Mycobacterium abscessus (Mab) is a rapidly-growing nontuberculous mycobacterium that is a growing health concern among both immunocompetent and immunocompromised patient populations. It most commonly causes skin and soft tissue or pulmonary infection. As an emerging health issue there is much that still needs to be understood about the infection and its progression to disease. In the context of pulmonary infection, an in vivo system of Mab infection that permits investigation of host-microbe interactions that result in Mab infection and the transition to pathogenesis, and also the evaluation of treatments, is an essential tool that is currently lacking. Here, we describe a system of pulmonary Mab infection in the C3HeB/FeJ mouse strain under corticosteroid immunosuppressive therapy that progresses to pathology.
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