Mycobacterium tuberculosis can stay silent for years inside a person and then suddenly reactive itself and cause tuberculosis.
Scientists from Stanford University discover a new place where the TB bacteria can hide out during this silent state: bone marrow cells.
The researchers found the bacteria living inside the bone marrow cells of two patients previously “cured” of TB. And, M. tuberculosis readily grows inside bone marrow cells in the laboratory.
At the top, the M. tuberculosis, stained red, infects human CD271+/CD133+ bone marrow cells. At the bottom, the bacteria, labeled green, grows inside mouse bone marrow cells.
Learn more about these findings in the journal Science Translational Medicine.
Images from Science Translational Medicine.