Bacterial load

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Quantity of bacteria built up in body tissues.

Dr. A comments on EB load and severity of illness.

There is another issue with Chlamydia therapy that may be a factor. There is definitely a "Chlamydia load" that is a major problem. By load, I mean chlamydial elementary bodies (EBs) that have accumulated in blood and tissue as a part of the infection and life cycle of the organism. In blood, these EBs ride around on RBCs (photo taken with a Bradford microscope - which can magnify 18,000 fold).
  (see the attached file for this picture)
Presumably, these EBs can infect cells. Interestingly, cells already infected by Chlamydia are protected from further infection. As infected cells are cleared or die during chlamydial therapy, there are new cells that are now susceptible to infection by these EBs.

This is one reason we like to add rifampin to the regimen. If you break open chlamydial EBs using a reducing agent such as penicillamine, there is immediately present a preformed DNA-dependent RNA polymerase - which is the target of rifampin. Rifampin does not allow the EBs to transform to reticulate bodies - which then must be killed - or are killed and cause antigens to be released. these EBs have been documented by Bradford microscopy many times and the magnitude of these EBs clinging to RBCs correlates with the severity of illness and the reactions with therapy.
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