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Identifying experimental surrogates for Bacillus anthracis spores: a review

Greenberg, David L. and Busch, Joseph D. and Keim, Paul and Wagner, David M. (2010) Identifying experimental surrogates for Bacillus anthracis spores: a review. Investigative Genetics, 1 (1). p. 4. ISSN 2041-2223


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Publisher’s or external URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/2041-2223-1-4


Bacillus anthracis, the causative agent of anthrax, is a proven biological weapon. In order to study this threat, a number of experimental surrogates have been used over the past 70 years. However, not all surrogates are appropriate for B. anthracis, especially when investigating transport, fate and survival. Although B. atrophaeus has been widely used as a B. anthracis surrogate, the two species do not always behave identically in transport and survival models. Therefore, we devised a scheme to identify a more appropriate surrogate for B. anthracis. Our selection criteria included risk of use (pathogenicity), phylogenetic relationship, morphology and comparative survivability when challenged with biocides. Although our knowledge of certain parameters remains incomplete, especially with regards to comparisons of spore longevity under natural conditions, we found that B. thuringiensis provided the best overall fit as a non-pathogenic surrogate for B. anthracis. Thus, we suggest focusing on this surrogate in future experiments of spore fate and transport modelling. PMID: 21092338

Item Type: Article
ID number or DOI: 10.1186/2041-2223-1-4
Keywords: Anthrax; Bacillus anthracis; Bacillus (Bacteria); Bacterial diseases; Bacterial spores
Subjects: Q Science > QH Natural history > QH426 Genetics
Q Science > QR Microbiology
MeSH Subjects: B Organisms > B03 Bacteria
NAU Depositing Author Academic Status: Faculty/Staff
Department/Unit: College of Engineering, Forestry, and Natural Science > Biological Sciences
Date Deposited: 30 Sep 2015 05:12
URI: http://openknowledge.nau.edu/id/eprint/254

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