Issue Date: March 20, 2017
Inflammation encourages spread of bacterial viruses
Pathogenic bacteria sometimes wreak havoc thanks to viral invaders called bacteriophages. Some phages infect bacteria and incorporate their DNA, as well as genes for toxins and other virulence factors, into the genomes of the microbes. In fact, the genes for the cholera toxin came from a phage that infected the ancestor of Vibrio cholerae. Such phages lie dormant and then reawaken and burst out of bacteria to infect other bacteria . . .
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