Research Highlight

Drug-resistance beating adhesins

doi:10.1038/nindia.2011.27 Published online 28 February 2011

Scientists hunting for new virulence proteins in the bacteria Salmonella typhi have identified several promising adhesins — components that enable the bacteria to adhere to and colonize a host. These adhesins could help overcome the problem of drug resistance in typhoid.

Typhoid fever has demonstrated a resistance to treatment in many cases. Available vaccines have also shown limited effectiveness.

Looking for novel virulence proteins through computational approaches, the researchers found that T2544, an outer membrane protein of S. typhi that plays a major role in binding the bacteria to the host, had strong immune-boosting components.

In animal experiments, the T2544 antiserum was found to contribute antibodies that killed the bacteria. The researchers suggest that T2544 could be a potential vaccine candidate to protect against typhoid fever.


  1. Ghosh, S. et al. An adhesion protein of Salmonella enterica serovar Typhi is required for pathogenesis and potential target for vaccine development. Proc. Natl Acad. Sci. USA. doi: 10.1073/pnas.1016180108 (2011)