Like their human hosts, bacteria need iron to survive and they must obtain that iron from the environment. While humans obtain iron primarily through the food they eat, bacteria have evolved complex and diverse mechanisms to allow them access to iron. A Syracuse University research team led by Robert Doyle, assistant professor of chemistry in The College of Arts and Sciences, discovered that some bacteria are equipped with a gene that enables them to harvest iron from their environment or human host in a unique and energy efficient manner. Doyle's discovery could provide researchers with new ways to target such diseases as tuberculosis. The research will be published in the August issue (volume 190, issue 16) of the prestigious Journal of Bacteriology, published by the American Society for Microbiology.
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