Host-Pathogen Interaction and Human Disease: Part 2: Helicobacter pylori and Gastric Cancer (48:57)

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Helicobacter pylori lives in the human stomach. It causes gastritis, ulcer disease and even gastric cancer. Some H. pylori can inject a protein, CagA, into gastric epithelial cells. CagA interacts with the tight junctions that bind cells together and with signaling molecules affecting motility and proliferation. CagA is associated with ulcer disease and cancer but we don't understand how it works to favor malignancy. Not long ago in history most humans carried H. pylori ; the incidence of...

Host-Pathogen Interaction and Human Disease: Part 1: What is a Pathogen? Trying to Understand Human Biology by the Study of Pathogenic Bacteria (37:48)

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Ninety percent of the cells humans carry are microbes. Only a few of the bacteria we encounter are pathogenic and can cause disease. Pathogens possess the inherent ability to cross anatomic barriers or breach other host defenses that limit the microbes that make up our normal flora. A significant part of human evolution has gone into developing ways to thwart microbial intrusion. In turn, microbes have come up with clever ways to avoid and circumvent host defenses but human — microbe...