Assays done in mammals has shown that enteric salmonellas are able to use the inflammatory process provoked by them as a source of energy to survive and multiply inside the gut. This process is associated with the use of tetrathionate (ttr) as a by-product of the host inflammatory gut response. After the production of tetrathionate it becomes possible to use propanediol (pdu) as an energy source. Therefore, the intestinal inflammatory response of the host promotes efficient bacterial multiplication in the intestinal lumen, with consequent colonization and fecal-oral transmission. Poultry products have been associated with human foodborne diseases. Most of them caused by Salmonella enteritidis (SE) and Salmonella typhimurium (ST). In the last years, the European Community has rejected several poultry products from Brazil because they were contaminated by Salmonella heidelberg (SH). In view of the importance of poultry foods in foodborne salmonellosis we will investigate the relevance of genes related to tetrathionate and ethanolamine metabolism to the intestinal colonization of Salmonella in chickens. It is proposed the construction of mutant strains of SE, ST and SH containing deletions in the genes ttrA and pduA, to assess their behaviour during the infection. The knowledge acquired may help to better understand the relationship between the bacteria and the host, contributing to a better understanding of bacterial behaviour and the search for alternatives to inhibit intestinal survival and colonization.
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