Theodicy: bad bacteria seen differently (Introduction)

by David Turell @, Wednesday, July 14, 2021, 17:50 (197 days ago) @ David Turell

There are bad vaginal bacteria that fight the good ones:

Bacterial vaginosis is the most common and recurrent gynecological condition affecting nearly 30% of women between the ages of 15 and 44, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Led by Melissa Herbst-Kralovetz, PhD, a member of the BIO5 Institute and associate professor of basic medical sciences at the College of Medicine -- Phoenix, researchers found that members of the Veillonellaceae bacteria family contribute to an increase in inflammation and cell death, and alter the acidity of the cervical microenvironment. These changes support bacterial vaginosis and create favorable conditions for subsequent gynecological diseases, such as sexually transmitted infections and cancer.

"Bacterial vaginosis is an enigma," said Dr. Herbst-Kralovetz, who is also director of the Women's Health Research Program. "We know many factors contribute to this disease, but little is known about the functional impact of the major players and how they're changing the local landscape."

The paper, "Veillonellaceae family members uniquely alter the cervical metabolic microenvironment in a human three-dimensional epithelial model," published July 6 in the journal npj Biofilms and Microbiomes, found that Veillonellaceae family members contribute to disease by altering inflammation and metabolism in the cervicovaginal region.


The female reproductive tract is typically colonized by bacteria that promote health, such as Lactobacillus. While these bacteria are considered friendly, an imbalance can lead to the creation of a biofilm -- a consortium of many different harmful microbes -- that promotes disease.


Using a 3D human model, Dr. Herbst-Kralovetz's group evaluated the effects of three bacterium -- Veillonella atypica, Veillonella montpellierensis, and Megasphaera micronuciformis -- on the cervical microenvironment.

They found that two species -- V. atypica and V. montpellierensis -- decreased lactate, an acid typically produced by beneficial bacteria that provides protection from harmful infections. These two species also increased substances that play a role in bacterial vaginosis-associated vaginal odor.

They also found that M. micronuciformis further drives disease progression by increasing inflammation and promoting cell death through the production of certain fat molecules.

Comment: Once again, we have good bacteria, which help us, fighting with bad ones and we get caught in the middle. Not God's fault.

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