Influence of bacterial interactions on pneumococcal colonization of the nasopharynx

Trends in Microbiology
Joshua ShakKeith P Klugman

Abstract

Streptococcus pneumoniae (the pneumococcus) is a common commensal inhabitant of the nasopharynx and a frequent etiologic agent in serious diseases such as pneumonia, otitis media, bacteremia, and meningitis. Multiple pneumococcal strains can colonize the nasopharynx, which is also home to many other bacterial species. Intraspecies and interspecies interactions influence pneumococcal carriage in important ways. Co-colonization by two or more pneumococcal strains has implications for vaccine serotype replacement, carriage detection, and pneumonia diagnostics. Interactions between the pneumococcus and other bacterial species alter carriage prevalence, modulate virulence, and affect biofilm formation. By examining these interactions, this review highlights how the bacterial ecosystem of the nasopharynx changes the nature and course of pneumococcal carriage.

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Related Concepts

Carrier of Disorder
Structure of Choanae
Pneumococcal Infections
Streptococcus pneumoniae
Competitive Behavior, Microbial
Secondary Infections
Bacteremia
Meningitis
Nasopharynx
Otitis Media

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