Microbe Profile: Mycobacterium tuberculosis: Humanity’s deadly microbial foe.

Microbiology (Reading, England), Volume: 164, Issue: 4
April 21, 2018
Stephen V Gordon SV, Tanya Parish T

Mycobacterium tuberculosis is an expert and deadly pathogen, causing the disease tuberculosis (TB) in humans. It has several notable features: the ability to enter non-replicating states for long periods and cause latent infection; metabolic remodelling during chronic infection; a thick, waxy cell wall; slow growth rate in culture; and intrinsic drug resistance and antibiotic tolerance. As a pathogen, M. tuberculosis has a complex relationship with its host, is able to replicate inside macrophages, and expresses diverse immunomodulatory molecules. M. tuberculosis currently causes over 1.8 million deaths a year, making it the world’s most deadly human pathogen.

Courtesy of the U.S. National Library of Medicine