In a rare occurrence, an ancient Indian text was found to be causing a new infection in the US, and scientists are investigating how it was able to infect humans.
In an attempt to determine whether or not it was an ancient infection, researchers in the United States have isolated a new species of bacterium, known as an osmosis-associated microorganistic.
“This is an isolated, novel species of microorganis, called an osmiosebacterial microorganoid (OSMIOB), that was previously identified in two ancient Indian samples of the genus Salmonella,” said Dr Raghunathan Venkatraman, an associate professor at the University of California, San Diego.
“The OSMIOB has no known function in the human gut, but has been reported to cause a variety of serious diseases, including diarrhea, abdominal pain, fever and a high rate of infections in children and pregnant women.”
It was found in a human sample that was dated to 1,500 BC,” Dr Venkatrantan added.”
So, we are at the earliest stages of investigating this case as a new type of microbe that has no established functions.
“The new species was isolated from a human and a rat.”
Our hypothesis is that this was a novel organism that was isolated in a sample that is very recent and has very few bacteria,” Dr Vinay Gupta, an assistant professor of microbiology at UC San Diego, said.”
We think that it was isolated because the organism was in a very small volume and not necessarily in a culture medium.
“Dr Gupta said that he and his colleagues were investigating how the organism managed to survive and infect humans for so long without any symptoms.”
In a culture of this organism, the presence of a lot of bacteria in the environment does not always lead to the emergence of an infectious agent,” he said.
While the new species has been identified in one case, there are a number of other species of bacteria that can be found in the same sample that are not present in the modern samples, he added.
Dr Gupta’s team is currently investigating whether the organism can survive in the gut of people who have not been exposed to modern microorganisms.”
Because the OSMIOob was isolated, we don’t know whether it is present in people, but we have a hypothesis that it is,” he explained.”
What is certain is that there is an ongoing concern in the scientific community about this species and the possible impact it could have on human health.
“In its research, the team is examining the composition of the bacterial colony and its DNA.
It has not yet determined if the OSMOSB has any long-term effects on humans.”
Although this is a novel infection, the pathogenesis is the same in both species,” Dr Gupta said.