Bacterial colonization prior to catching flu may protect against severe illness

10 julio 2014

Severe illness and even death are likely to result if you develop another respiratory infection after catching the flu. Now, however, a team of researchers has determined that if you reverse the order of infection, pneumococcus bacteria may actually protect against a bad case of the flu. The bacterial protein pneumolysin, a bacterial virulence factor, might protect certain immune system cells (macrophages) in the alveoli of the lungs, preventing inflammation and, thus, pneumonia.