Mycobacterium tuberculosis, the causative agent of tuberculosis (TB), infects primarily macrophages, causing them to differentiate into lipid-laden foamy macrophages that are a primary source of tissue destruction in patients with TB. In this issue of the JCI, Bedard et al. demonstrate that 1-tuberculosinyladenosine, a virulence factor produced by M. tuberculosis, caused lysosomal dysfunction associated with lipid storage in the phagolysosome of macrophages in a manner that mimicked lysosomal storage diseases. This work sheds light on how M. tuberculosis manipulates host lipid metabolism for its survival and opens avenues toward host-directed therapy against TB.
Yoann Rombouts, Olivier Neyrolles