The patent's assignee for patent number 8530224 is Helmholtz-Zentrum fur
News editors obtained the following quote from the background information supplied by the inventors: "Despite the availability of antibiotic treatment streptococcal infections remain a serious threat to human health. Within the genus 'Streptococcus', that comprises a rather heterogeneous variety of species, are pathogens like S. pyogenes, S. agalactiae, and S. pneumoniae that have an prominent role in human infections. S. pyogenes is a major cause for pharyngitis and causes galling skin diseases. This streptococcal species is characterized by .beta.-hemolysis and the presence of Lancefield group A carbohydrates on its surface. In recent years it has become clear, both from epidemiologic as well as from functional studies, that .beta.-hemolytic streptococcal species, which belong to Lancefield group C and G, have a pathogenic potential which is similar to that of S. pyogenes. Like infections with S. pyogenes, infections with group C- and group G streptococci (GCS, GGS, or together GCGS) can develop into life threatening necrotizing fasciitis, sepsis, and streptococcal toxic shock syndrome. Not only acute stages of S. pyogenes- and GCGS infections are threatening to the patient's life. Auto-immune sequelae with an often fatal outcome, namely poststreptococcal glomerulonephritis and acute rheumatic fever (ARF), arise in the wake of streptococcal infections.
"Lancefield groups C and G comprise a number of different species of which S. dysgalactiae equisimilis is considered as the most frequent in human infections. Other rather neglected species that can expose group C and G carbohydrates are those gathered under the umbrella-term 'anginosus group'. Their role in human infection is documented, but their epidemiological significance has not been sufficiently investigated and assessed. Streptococci of the anginosus group (S. anginosus, S. constellatus, S. intermedius), which were formerly also referred to as S. milleri, are associated with purulent infections and severe abscess formation in the deep neck, the central nervous system and in inner organs. They exhibit a prominent phenotypic as well as immunogenic diversity as compared to other streptococci. Although the majority of isolates is non-.beta.-hemolytic, there are .beta.-hemolytic strains of each of the three species. When they carry a typable Lancefield group antigen, it belongs to group F, C, A, or G (for details see: (1)). Moreover, data base entries indicate that strains of the anginosus group may carry M proteins.
"Microbiological routine diagnostic of streptococcal infections is often restricted to determination of the type of hemolysis and of the Lancefield group. Identification to the species level is rarely carried out and under these conditions bares a considerable risk for misidentification of causative pathogens. Consequently our insight into the epidemiology of infections with .beta.-hemolytic streptococci is not precise. Comprehensive insight, however, is necessary for the development of improved treatments, aspired vaccination programs (although primarily targeting S. pyogenes), and the survey of the latter.
Most Popular Stories
- Accenture Gets 8 Percent Bump in Q1
- Lockheed Martin Ends Gifts to Boy Scouts Over Gay Ban
- Texting With Vodka: Booze and Social Media Can Mix After All
- Menendez Pushes for Iran Sanctions
- Stripped-Down Defense Bill Creates Winners, Losers
- Mazda Leads the Pack for Fuel Efficiency
- Debt Ceiling Looms Again as Deadline Approaches
- How to Protect Yourself After Target Data Breach
- Deportation Threat Looms Larger Than Citizenship Among Hispanics
- Baucus May Be Next China Ambassador