Bodyguards in the gut have a chemical weapon

(Max Planck Institute for Chemical Ecology) Beneficial bacteria in the gut of moth larvae produce an antibiotic that kills competing bacteria which otherwise have detrimental effects on insect development. An international team of scientists under the direction of the Max Planck Institute for Chemical Ecology in Jena, Germany, were able to demonstrate for the first time that symbiotic Enterococcus mundtii bacteria secrete the antimicrobial peptide mundticin. It enters harmful germs in the gut of the African cotton leafworm and kills them.
Source: EurekAlert! - Biology - Category: Biology Source Type: news