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Sample records for anthracis lethal factor

  1. Biochip for the Detection of Bacillus anthracis Lethal Factor and Therapeutic Agents against Anthrax Toxins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Silin, Vitalii; Kasianowicz, John J; Michelman-Ribeiro, Ariel; Panchal, Rekha G; Bavari, Sina; Robertson, Joseph W F

    2016-01-01

    Tethered lipid bilayer membranes (tBLMs) have been used in many applications, including biosensing and membrane protein structure studies. This report describes a biosensor for anthrax toxins that was fabricated through the self-assembly of a tBLM with B. anthracis protective antigen ion channels that are both the recognition element and electrochemical transducer. We characterize the sensor and its properties with electrochemical impedance spectroscopy and surface plasmon resonance. The sensor shows a sensitivity similar to ELISA and can also be used to rapidly screen for molecules that bind to the toxins and potentially inhibit their lethal effects. PMID:27348008

  2. Immunoelectrophoretic analysis, toxicity, and kinetics of in vitro production of the protective antigen and lethal factor components of Bacillus anthracis toxin.

    OpenAIRE

    Ezzell, J W; Ivins, B E; Leppla, S H

    1984-01-01

    The kinetics of Bacillus anthracis toxin production in culture and its lethal activity in rats, mice, and guinea pigs were investigated. Lethal toxin activity was produced in vitro throughout exponential growth at essentially identical rates in both encapsulated virulent and nonencapsulated avirulent strains. The two toxin proteins which produce lethality when in combination, lethal factor (LF) and protective antigen (PA), could be quantitated directly from culture fluids by rocket immunoelec...

  3. CD4+ T cells targeting dominant and cryptic epitopes from Bacillus anthracis Lethal Factor

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    Stephanie eAscough

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Anthrax is an endemic infection in many countries, particularly in the developing world. The causative agent, Bacillus anthracis, mediates disease through the secretion of binary exotoxins. Until recently, research into adaptive immunity targeting this bacterial pathogen has largely focused on the humoral response to these toxins. There is, however, growing recognition that cellular immune responses involving IFNγ producing CD4+ T cells also contribute significantly to a protective memory response. An established concept in adaptive immunity to infection is that during infection of host cells, new microbial epitopes may be revealed, leading to immune recognition of so called ‘cryptic’ or ‘subdominant’ epitopes. We analysed the response to both cryptic and immunodominant T cell epitopes derived from the toxin component lethal factor and presented by a range of HLA-DR alleles. Using IFNγ-ELISPOT assays we characterised epitopes that elicited a response following immunisation with synthetic peptide and the whole protein and tested their capacities to bind purified HLA-DR molecules in vitro. We found that DR1 transgenics demonstrated T cell responses to a greater number of domain III cryptic epitopes than other HLA-DR transgenics, and that this pattern was repeated with the immunodominant epitopes, a greater proportion of these epitopes induced a T cell response when presented within the context of the whole protein. Immunodominant epitopes LF457-476 and LF467-487 were found to induce a T cell response to the peptide, as well as to the whole native LF protein in DR1 and DR15, but not in DR4 trangenics. The analysis of Domain I revealed the presence of several unique cryptic epitopes all of which showed a strong to moderate relative binding affinity to HLA-DR4 molecules. However, none of the cryptic epitopes from either domain III or I displayed notably high binding affinities across all HLA-DR alleles assayed. These responses were

  4. Mapping the epitopes of a neutralizing antibody fragment directed against the lethal factor of Bacillus anthracis and cross-reacting with the homologous edema factor.

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    Philippe Thullier

    Full Text Available The lethal toxin (LT of Bacillus anthracis, composed of the protective antigen (PA and the lethal factor (LF, plays an essential role in anthrax pathogenesis. PA also interacts with the edema factor (EF, 20% identity with LF to form the edema toxin (ET, which has a lesser role in anthrax pathogenesis. The first recombinant antibody fragment directed against LF was scFv 2LF; it neutralizes LT by blocking the interaction between PA and LF. Here, we report that scFv 2LF cross-reacts with EF and cross-neutralizes ET, and we present an in silico method taking advantage of this cross-reactivity to map the epitope of scFv 2LF on both LF and EF. This method identified five epitope candidates on LF, constituted of a total of 32 residues, which were tested experimentally by mutating the residues to alanine. This combined approach precisely identified the epitope of scFv 2LF on LF as five residues (H229, R230, Q234, L235 and Y236, of which three were missed by the consensus epitope candidate identified by pre-existing in silico methods. The homolog of this epitope on EF (H253, R254, E258, L259 and Y260 was experimentally confirmed to constitute the epitope of scFv 2LF on EF. Other inhibitors, including synthetic molecules, could be used to target these epitopes for therapeutic purposes. The in silico method presented here may be of more general interest.

  5. Neutralizing Activity of Vaccine-Induced Antibodies to Two Bacillus anthracis Toxin Components, Lethal Factor and Edema Factor▿

    OpenAIRE

    Taft, Sarah C.; Weiss, Alison A.

    2007-01-01

    Anthrax vaccine adsorbed (AVA; BioThrax), the current FDA-licensed human anthrax vaccine, contains various amounts of the three anthrax toxin components, protective antigen (PA), lethal factor (LF), and edema factor (EF). While antibody to PA is sufficient to mediate protection against anthrax in animal models, it is not known if antibodies to LF or EF contribute to protection in humans. Toxin-neutralizing activity was evaluated in sera from AVA-vaccinated volunteers, all of whom had antibody...

  6. Cloning, expression and purification of binding domains of lethal factor and protective antigen of Bacillus anthracis in Escherichia coli and evaluation of their related murine antibody.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rezaee, Mehdi; Honari, Hossein; Kooshk, Mohammad Reza Ashrafi

    2014-01-01

    Anthrax is common disease between human and animals caused by Bacillus anthracis. The cell binding domain of protective antigen (PAD4) and the binding domain of lethal factor (LFD1) have high immunogenicity potential and always were considered as a vaccine candidate against anthrax. The aims of this study are cloning and expressing of PAD4 and LFD1 in Escherichia coli, purification of the recombinant proteins and determination of their immunogenicity through evaluating of the relative produced polyclonal antibodies in mice. PAD4 and LFD1 genes were cloned in pET28a(+) vector and expressed in E. coli Bl21(DE3)PlysS. Expression and purification of the two recombinant proteins were confirmed by SDS-PAGE and Western blotting techniques. The PAD4 and LFD1 were purified using Ni(+)-NTA affinity chromatography (95-98 %), yielding 37.5 and 45 mg/l of culture, respectively. The antigens were injected three times into mice and production of relative antibodies was evaluated by ELISA test. The results showed that both PAD4 and LFD1 are immunogenic, but LFD1 has higher potential to stimulate Murine immune system. With regard to the high level of LFD1 and PAD4 expression and also significant increment in produced polyclonal antibodies, these recombinant proteins can be considered as a recombinant vaccine candidate against anthrax. PMID:24430302

  7. Development of a Cell-Based Fluorescence Resonance Energy Transfer Reporter for Bacillus anthracis Lethal Factor Protease

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kimura, R H; Steenblock, E R; Camarero, J A

    2007-03-22

    We report the construction of a cell-based fluorescent reporter for anthrax lethal factor (LF) protease activity using the principle of fluorescence resonance energy transfer (FRET). This was accomplished by engineering an Escherichia coli cell line to express a genetically encoded FRET reporter and LF protease. Both proteins were encoded in two different expression plasmids under the control of different tightly controlled inducible promoters. The FRET-based reporter was designed to contain a LF recognition sequence flanked by the FRET pair formed by CyPet and YPet fluorescent proteins. The length of the linker between both fluorescent proteins was optimized using a flexible peptide linker containing several Gly-Gly-Ser repeats. Our results indicate that this FRET-based LF reporter was readily expressed in E. coli cells showing high levels of FRET in vivo in the absence of LF. The FRET signal, however, decreased 5 times after inducing LF expression in the same cell. These results suggest that this cell-based LF FRET reporter may be used to screen genetically encoded libraries in vivo against LF.

  8. Quantitative Determination of Lethal Toxin Proteins in Culture Supernatant of Human Live Anthrax Vaccine Bacillus anthracis A16R

    OpenAIRE

    Zai, Xiaodong; Zhang, Jun; Liu, Ju; Liu,Jie; Li, Liangliang; Yin, Ying; Fu, Ling; Xu, Junjie; Chen, Wei

    2016-01-01

    Bacillus anthracis (B. anthracis) is the etiological agent of anthrax affecting both humans and animals. Anthrax toxin (AT) plays a major role in pathogenesis. It includes lethal toxin (LT) and edema toxin (ET), which are formed by the combination of protective antigen (PA) and lethal factor (LF) or edema factor (EF), respectively. The currently used human anthrax vaccine in China utilizes live-attenuated B. anthracis spores (A16R; pXO1+, pXO2−) that produce anthrax toxin but cannot produce t...

  9. Circulating lethal toxin decreases the ability of neutrophils to respond to Bacillus anthracis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weiner, Zachary P; Ernst, Stephen M; Boyer, Anne E; Gallegos-Candela, Maribel; Barr, John R; Glomski, Ian J

    2014-04-01

    Polymorphonuclear leucocytes (PMNs) play a protective role during Bacillus anthracis infection. However, B. anthracis is able to subvert the PMN response effectively as evidenced by the high mortality rates of anthrax. One major virulence factor produced by B. anthracis, lethal toxin (LT), is necessary for dissemination in the BSL2 model of mouse infection. While human and mouse PMNs kill vegetative B. anthracis, short in vitro half-lives of PMNs have made it difficult to determine how or if LT alters their bactericidal function. Additionally, the role of LT intoxication on PMN's ability to migrate to inflammatory signals remains controversial. LF concentrations in both serum and major organs were determined from mice infected with B. anthracis Sterne strain at defined stages of infection to guide subsequent administration of purified toxin. Bactericidal activity of PMNs assessed using ex vivo cell culture assays showed significant defects in killing B. anthracis. In vivo PMN recruitment to inflammatory stimuli was significantly impaired at 24 h as assessed by real-time analysis of light-producing PMNs within the mouse. The observations described above suggest that LT serves dual functions; it both attenuates accumulation of PMNs at sites of inflammation and impairs PMNs bactericidal activity against vegetative B. anthracis. PMID:24152301

  10. Molecular analysis of adenylyl cyclase: Bacillus anthracis edema factor exotoxin

    OpenAIRE

    Mohammed, Hesham Hamada Taha

    2010-01-01

    Bacillus anthracis causes anthrax disease and exerts its deleterious effects by the release of three exotoxins, i.e. lethal factor, protective antigen and edema factor EF), a highly active calmodulin-dependent adenylyl cyclase (AC). However, conventional antibiotic treatment is ineffective against either toxemia or antibiotic- resistant strains. Thus, more effective drugs for anthrax treatment are needed. We successfully purified the recombinant full-length EF and EF3(F586A) from E. coli with...

  11. Activated protein C ameliorates Bacillus anthracis lethal toxin-induced lethal pathogenesis in rats

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    Kau Jyh-Hwa

    2012-11-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Lethal toxin (LT is a major virulence factor of Bacillus anthracis. Sprague Dawley rats manifest pronounced lung edema and shock after LT treatments, resulting in high mortality. The heart failure that is induced by LT has been suggested to be a principal mechanism of lung edema and mortality in rodents. Since LT-induced death occurs more rapidly in rats than in mice, suggesting that other mechanisms in addition to the heart dysfunction may be contributed to the fast progression of LT-induced pathogenesis in rats. Coagulopathy may contribute to circulatory failure and lung injury. However, the effect of LT on coagulation-induced lung dysfunction is unclear. Methods To investigate the involvement of coagulopathy in LT-mediated pathogenesis, the mortality, lung histology and coagulant levels of LT-treated rats were examined. The effects of activated protein C (aPC on LT-mediated pathogenesis were also evaluated. Results Fibrin depositions were detected in the lungs of LT-treated rats, indicating that coagulation was activated. Increased levels of plasma D-dimer and thrombomodulin, and the ameliorative effect of aPC further suggested that the activation of coagulation-fibrinolysis pathways plays a role in LT-mediated pathogenesis in rats. Reduced mortality was associated with decreased plasma levels of D-dimer and thrombomodulin following aPC treatments in rats with LT-mediated pathogenesis. Conclusions These findings suggest that the activation of coagulation in lung tissue contributes to mortality in LT-mediated pathogenesis in rats. In addition, anticoagulant aPC may help to develop a feasible therapeutic strategy.

  12. Human monoclonal antibodies against anthrax lethal factor and protective antigen act independently to protect against Bacillus anthracis infection and enhance endogenous immunity to anthrax

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Albrecht, Mark T.; Li, Han; Williamson, E. Diane; LeButt, Chris S.; Flick-Smith, Helen C.; Quinn, Conrad P.; Westra, Hans; Galloway, Darrell; Mateczun, Alfred; Goldman, Stanley; Groen, Herman; Baillie, Les W. J.

    2007-01-01

    The unpredictable nature of bioterrorism and the absence of real-time detection systems have highlighted the need for an efficient postexposure therapy for Bacillus anthracis infection. One approach is passive immunization through the administration of antibodies that mitigate the biological action

  13. ATP Depletion Via Mitochondrial F1F0 Complex by Lethal Factor is an Early Event in B. Anthracis-Induced Sudden Cell Death

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    Mitchell W. Woodberry

    2009-08-01

    Full Text Available Bacillus anthracis’ primary virulence factor is a tripartite anthrax toxin consisting of edema factor (EF, lethal factor (LF and protective antigen (PA. In complex with PA, EF and LF are internalized via receptor-mediated endocytosis. EF is a calmodulin- dependent adenylate cyclase that induces tissue edema. LF is a zinc-metalloprotease that cleaves members of mitogen-activated protein kinase kinases. Lethal toxin (LT: PA plus LF-induced death of macrophages is primarily attributed to expression of the sensitive Nalp1b allele, inflammasome formation and activation of caspase-1, but early events that initiate these processes are unknown. Here we provide evidence that an early essential event in pyroptosis of alveolar macrophages is LF-mediated depletion of cellular ATP. The underlying mechanism involves interaction of LF with F1F0-complex gamma and beta subunits leading to increased ATPase activity in mitochondria. In support, mitochondrial DNA-depleted MH-S cells have decreased F1F0 ATPase activity due to the lack of F06 and F08 polypeptides and show increased resistance to LT. We conclude that ATP depletion is an important early event in LT-induced sudden cell death and its prevention increases survival of toxin-sensitive cells.

  14. MHC Class II and Non-MHC Class II Genes Differentially Influence Humoral Immunity to Bacillus anthracis Lethal Factor and Protective Antigen

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    Judith A. James

    2012-12-01

    Full Text Available Anthrax Lethal Toxin consists of Protective Antigen (PA and Lethal Factor (LF, and current vaccination strategies focus on eliciting antibodies to PA. In human vaccination, the response to PA can vary greatly, and the response is often directed toward non-neutralizing epitopes. Variable vaccine responses have been shown to be due in part to genetic differences in individuals, with both MHC class II and other genes playing roles. Here, we investigated the relative contribution of MHC class II versus non-MHC class II genes in the humoral response to PA and LF immunization using three immunized strains of inbred mice: A/J (H-2k at the MHC class II locus, B6 (H-2b, and B6.H2k (H-2k. IgG antibody titers to LF were controlled primarily by the MHC class II locus, whereas IgG titers to PA were strongly influenced by the non-MHC class II genetic background. Conversely, the humoral fine specificity of reactivity to LF appeared to be controlled primarily through non-MHC class II genes, while the specificity of reactivity to PA was more dependent on MHC class II. Common epitopes, reactive in all strains, occurred in both LF and PA responses. These results demonstrate that MHC class II differentially influences humoral immune responses to LF and PA.

  15. Evaluation of the ability of N-terminal fragment of lethal factor of Bacillus anthracis for delivery of Mycobacterium T cell antigen ESAT-6 into cytosol of antigen presenting cells to elicit effective cytotoxic T lymphocyte response

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    We report the ability of N-terminal fragment of lethal factor of Bacillus anthracis to deliver genetically fused ESAT-6 (early secretory antigen target), a potent T cell antigen of Mycobacterium tuberculosis, into cytosol to elicit Cytotoxic T lymphocyte (CTL) response. In vitro Th1 cytokines data and CTL assay proved that efficient delivery of LFn.ESAT-6 occurs in cytosol, in the presence of protective antigen (PA), and leads to generation of effective CTL response. Since CTL response is essential for protection against intracellular pathogens and, it is well known that only single T cell epitope or single antigenic protein is not sufficient to elicit protective CTL response due to variation or polymorphism in MHC-I alleles among the individuals, we suggest that as a fusion protein LFn can be used to deliver multiepitopes of T cells or multiproteins which can generate effective CTLs against intracellular pathogens like M. tuberculosis. It can be used to enhance the protective efficacy of BCG vaccine

  16. Quantitative Determination of Lethal Toxin Proteins in Culture Supernatant of Human Live Anthrax Vaccine Bacillus anthracis A16R.

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    Zai, Xiaodong; Zhang, Jun; Liu, Ju; Liu, Jie; Li, Liangliang; Yin, Ying; Fu, Ling; Xu, Junjie; Chen, Wei

    2016-03-01

    Bacillus anthracis (B. anthracis) is the etiological agent of anthrax affecting both humans and animals. Anthrax toxin (AT) plays a major role in pathogenesis. It includes lethal toxin (LT) and edema toxin (ET), which are formed by the combination of protective antigen (PA) and lethal factor (LF) or edema factor (EF), respectively. The currently used human anthrax vaccine in China utilizes live-attenuated B. anthracis spores (A16R; pXO1+, pXO2-) that produce anthrax toxin but cannot produce the capsule. Anthrax toxins, especially LT, have key effects on both the immunogenicity and toxicity of human anthrax vaccines. Thus, determining quantities and biological activities of LT proteins expressed by the A16R strain is meaningful. Here, we explored LT expression patterns of the A16R strain in culture conditions using another vaccine strain Sterne as a control. We developed a sandwich ELISA and cytotoxicity-based method for quantitative detection of PA and LF. Expression and degradation of LT proteins were observed in culture supernatants over time. Additionally, LT proteins expressed by the A16R and Sterne strains were found to be monomeric and showed cytotoxic activity, which may be the main reason for side effects of live anthrax vaccines. Our work facilitates the characterization of anthrax vaccines components and establishment of a quality control standard for vaccine production which may ultimately help to ensure the efficacy and safety of the human anthrax vaccine A16R. PMID:26927174

  17. Bacillus anthracis lethal toxin disrupts TCR signaling in CD1d-restricted NKT cells leading to functional anergy.

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    Sunil K Joshi

    2009-09-01

    Full Text Available Exogenous CD1d-binding glycolipid (alpha-Galactosylceramide, alpha-GC stimulates TCR signaling and activation of type-1 natural killer-like T (NKT cells. Activated NKT cells play a central role in the regulation of adaptive and protective immune responses against pathogens and tumors. In the present study, we tested the effect of Bacillus anthracis lethal toxin (LT on NKT cells both in vivo and in vitro. LT is a binary toxin known to suppress host immune responses during anthrax disease and intoxicates cells by protective antigen (PA-mediated intracellular delivery of lethal factor (LF, a potent metalloprotease. We observed that NKT cells expressed anthrax toxin receptors (CMG-2 and TEM-8 and bound more PA than other immune cell types. A sub-lethal dose of LT administered in vivo in C57BL/6 mice decreased expression of the activation receptor NKG2D by NKT cells but not by NK cells. The in vivo administration of LT led to decreased TCR-induced cytokine secretion but did not affect TCR expression. Further analysis revealed LT-dependent inhibition of TCR-stimulated MAP kinase signaling in NKT cells attributable to LT cleavage of the MAP kinase kinase MEK-2. We propose that Bacillus anthracis-derived LT causes a novel form of functional anergy in NKT cells and therefore has potential for contributing to immune evasion by the pathogen.

  18. Molecular cloning and expression of the Bacillus anthracis edema factor toxin gene: a calmodulin-dependent adenylate cyclase.

    OpenAIRE

    Tippetts, M T; Robertson, D L

    1988-01-01

    The Bacillus anthracis exotoxin is composed of a lethal factor, a protective antigen, and an edema factor (EF). EF is a calmodulin-dependent adenylate cyclase which elevates cyclic AMP levels within cells. The entire EF gene (cya) has been cloned in Escherichia coli, but EF gene expression by its own B. anthracis promoter could not be detected in E. coli. However, when the EF gene was placed downstream from the lac or the T7 promoter, enzymatically active EF was produced. The EF gene, like th...

  19. Does Bacillus anthracis Lethal Toxin Directly Depress Myocardial Function? A Review of Clinical Cases and Preclinical Studies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Suffredini, Dante A; Sampath-Kumar, Hanish; Li, Yan; Ohanjanian, Lernik; Remy, Kenneth E; Cui, Xizhong; Eichacker, Peter Q

    2015-12-01

    The US outbreak of B.anthracis infection in 2001 and subsequent cases in the US and Europe demonstrate that anthrax is a continuing risk for the developed world. While several bacterial components contribute to the pathogenesis of B. anthracis, production of lethal toxin (LT) is strongly associated with the development of hypotension and lethality. However, the mechanisms underlying the cardiovascular instability LT produces are unclear. Some evidence suggests that LT causes shock by impairing the peripheral vasculature, effects consistent with the substantial extravasation of fluid in patients dying with B. anthracis. Other data suggests that LT directly depresses myocardial function. However a clinical correlate for this latter possibility is less evident since functional studies and post-mortem examination in patients demonstrate absent or minimal cardiac changes. The purposes of this review were to first present clinical studies of cardiac functional and histologic pathology with B. anthracis infection and to then examine in vivo, in vitro, and ex vivo preclinical studies of LT's myocardial effects. Together, these data suggest that it is unclear whether that LT directly depresses cardiac function. This question is important for the clinical management and development of new therapies for anthrax and efforts should continue to be made to answer it. PMID:26703730

  20. Does Bacillus anthracis Lethal Toxin Directly Depress Myocardial Function? A Review of Clinical Cases and Preclinical Studies

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    Dante A. Suffredini

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available The US outbreak of B.anthracis infection in 2001 and subsequent cases in the US and Europe demonstrate that anthrax is a continuing risk for the developed world. While several bacterial components contribute to the pathogenesis of B. anthracis, production of lethal toxin (LT is strongly associated with the development of hypotension and lethality. However, the mechanisms underlying the cardiovascular instability LT produces are unclear. Some evidence suggests that LT causes shock by impairing the peripheral vasculature, effects consistent with the substantial extravasation of fluid in patients dying with B. anthracis. Other data suggests that LT directly depresses myocardial function. However a clinical correlate for this latter possibility is less evident since functional studies and post-mortem examination in patients demonstrate absent or minimal cardiac changes. The purposes of this review were to first present clinical studies of cardiac functional and histologic pathology with B. anthracis infection and to then examine in vivo, in vitro, and ex vivo preclinical studies of LT’s myocardial effects. Together, these data suggest that it is unclear whether that LT directly depresses cardiac function. This question is important for the clinical management and development of new therapies for anthrax and efforts should continue to be made to answer it.

  1. Recombinant expression of Bacillus anthracis lethal toxin components of Indian isolate in Escherichia coli and determination of its acute toxicity level in mouse model.

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    Nagendra, Suryanarayana; Vanlalhmuaka; Verma, Sarika; Tuteja, Urmil; Thavachelvam, Kulanthaivel

    2015-12-15

    Bacillus anthracis lethal toxin (LeTx) is the principle factor responsible for toxaemia and anthrax related death. Lethal toxin consist of two proteins viz protective antigen (PA) and lethal factor which combines in a typical fashion similar to other toxins belonging to A-B toxin super family. The amount of LeTx required to kill a particular organism generally differs among strains owing to their geographical distributions and genetic variation. In the present study, we have cloned PA and LF genes from B. anthracis clinical isolate of Indian origin and expressed them in soluble form employing Escherichia coli expression system. Both the proteins were purified to near homogeneity level using Immobilized metal ion affinity chromatography (IMAC). Further we have used equal ratio of both the proteins to form LeTx and determined its acute toxicity level in Balb/c mice by graphical method of Miller and Tainter. The LD50 value of LeTx by intravenous (i.v) route was found to be 0.97 ± 0.634 mg kg(-1) Balb/c mice. This study highlights the expression of recombinant LeTx from E. coli and assessing its acute toxicity level in experimental mouse model. PMID:26472254

  2. Bacillus anthracis Factors for Phagosomal Escape

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    Irene Zornetta

    2012-07-01

    Full Text Available The mechanism of phagosome escape by intracellular pathogens is an important step in the infectious cycle. During the establishment of anthrax, Bacillus anthracis undergoes a transient intracellular phase in which spores are engulfed by local phagocytes. Spores germinate inside phagosomes and grow to vegetative bacilli, which emerge from their resident intracellular compartments, replicate and eventually exit from the plasma membrane. During germination, B. anthracis secretes multiple factors that can help its resistance to the phagocytes. Here the possible role of B. anthracis toxins, phospholipases, antioxidant enzymes and capsules in the phagosomal escape and survival, is analyzed and compared with that of factors of other microbial pathogens involved in the same type of process.

  3. Contractile actin cables induced by Bacillus anthracis lethal toxin depend on the histone acetylation machinery.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rolando, Monica; Stefani, Caroline; Doye, Anne; Acosta, Maria I; Visvikis, Orane; Yevick, Hannah G; Buchrieser, Carmen; Mettouchi, Amel; Bassereau, Patricia; Lemichez, Emmanuel

    2015-10-01

    It remains a challenge to decode the molecular basis of the long-term actin cytoskeleton rearrangements that are governed by the reprogramming of gene expression. Bacillus anthracis lethal toxin (LT) inhibits mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) signaling, thereby modulating gene expression, with major consequences for actin cytoskeleton organization and the loss of endothelial barrier function. Using a laser ablation approach, we characterized the contractile and tensile mechanical properties of LT-induced stress fibers. These actin cables resist pulling forces that are transmitted at cell-matrix interfaces and at cell-cell discontinuous adherens junctions. We report that treating the cells with trichostatin A (TSA), a broad range inhibitor of histone deacetylases (HDACs), or with MS-275, which targets HDAC1, 2 and 3, induces stress fibers. LT decreased the cellular levels of HDAC1, 2 and 3 and reduced the global HDAC activity in the nucleus. Both the LT and TSA treatments induced Rnd3 expression, which is required for the LT-mediated induction of actin stress fibers. Furthermore, we reveal that treating the LT-intoxicated cells with garcinol, an inhibitor of histone acetyl-transferases (HATs), disrupts the stress fibers and limits the monolayer barrier dysfunctions. These data demonstrate the importance of modulating the flux of protein acetylation in order to control actin cytoskeleton organization and the endothelial cell monolayer barrier. PMID:26403219

  4. Bacillus anthracis Spore Surface Protein BclA Mediates Complement Factor H Binding to Spores and Promotes Spore Persistence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Yanyu; Jenkins, Sarah A; Gu, Chunfang; Shree, Ankita; Martinez-Moczygemba, Margarita; Herold, Jennifer; Botto, Marina; Wetsel, Rick A; Xu, Yi

    2016-06-01

    Spores of Bacillus anthracis, the causative agent of anthrax, are known to persist in the host lungs for prolonged periods of time, however the underlying mechanism is poorly understood. In this study, we demonstrated that BclA, a major surface protein of B. anthracis spores, mediated direct binding of complement factor H (CFH) to spores. The surface bound CFH retained its regulatory cofactor activity resulting in C3 degradation and inhibition of downstream complement activation. By comparing results from wild type C57BL/6 mice and complement deficient mice, we further showed that BclA significantly contributed to spore persistence in the mouse lungs and dampened antibody responses to spores in a complement C3-dependent manner. In addition, prior exposure to BclA deletion spores (ΔbclA) provided significant protection against lethal challenges by B. anthracis, whereas the isogenic parent spores did not, indicating that BclA may also impair protective immunity. These results describe for the first time an immune inhibition mechanism of B. anthracis mediated by BclA and CFH that promotes spore persistence in vivo. The findings also suggested an important role of complement in persistent infections and thus have broad implications. PMID:27304426

  5. Bacillus anthracis Spore Surface Protein BclA Mediates Complement Factor H Binding to Spores and Promotes Spore Persistence.

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    Yanyu Wang

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available Spores of Bacillus anthracis, the causative agent of anthrax, are known to persist in the host lungs for prolonged periods of time, however the underlying mechanism is poorly understood. In this study, we demonstrated that BclA, a major surface protein of B. anthracis spores, mediated direct binding of complement factor H (CFH to spores. The surface bound CFH retained its regulatory cofactor activity resulting in C3 degradation and inhibition of downstream complement activation. By comparing results from wild type C57BL/6 mice and complement deficient mice, we further showed that BclA significantly contributed to spore persistence in the mouse lungs and dampened antibody responses to spores in a complement C3-dependent manner. In addition, prior exposure to BclA deletion spores (ΔbclA provided significant protection against lethal challenges by B. anthracis, whereas the isogenic parent spores did not, indicating that BclA may also impair protective immunity. These results describe for the first time an immune inhibition mechanism of B. anthracis mediated by BclA and CFH that promotes spore persistence in vivo. The findings also suggested an important role of complement in persistent infections and thus have broad implications.

  6. A plant-produced protective antigen vaccine confers protection in rabbits against a lethal aerosolized challenge with Bacillus anthracis Ames spores

    OpenAIRE

    Chichester, Jessica A.; Manceva, Slobodanka D; Rhee, Amy; Coffin, Megan V.; Musiychuk, Konstantin; Mett, Vadim; Shamloul, Moneim; Norikane, Joey; Streatfield, Stephen J.; Yusibov, Vidadi

    2013-01-01

    The potential use of Bacillus anthracis as a bioterrorism weapon threatens the security of populations globally, requiring the immediate availability of safe, efficient and easily delivered anthrax vaccine for mass vaccination. Extensive research efforts have been directed toward the development of recombinant subunit vaccines based on protective antigen (PA), the principal virulence factor of B. anthracis. Among the emerging technologies for the production of these vaccine antigens is our la...

  7. Ligand-induced expansion of the S1' site in the anthrax toxin lethal factor

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Maize, Kimberly M.; Kurbanov, Elbek K.; Johnson, Rodney L.; Amin, Elizabeth Ambrose; Finzel, Barry C. (UMM)

    2016-07-05

    The Bacillus anthracis lethal factor (LF) is one component of a tripartite exotoxin partly responsible for persistent anthrax cytotoxicity after initial bacterial infection. Inhibitors of the zinc metalloproteinase have been investigated as potential therapeutic agents, but LF is a challenging target because inhibitors lack sufficient selectivity or possess poor pharmaceutical properties. These structural studies reveal an alternate conformation of the enzyme, induced upon binding of specific inhibitors, that opens a previously unobserved deep pocket termed S1'* which might afford new opportunities to design selective inhibitors that target this subsite.

  8. Ligand-induced expansion of the S1' site in the anthrax toxin lethal factor.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maize, Kimberly M; Kurbanov, Elbek K; Johnson, Rodney L; Amin, Elizabeth Ambrose; Finzel, Barry C

    2015-12-21

    The Bacillus anthracis lethal factor (LF) is one component of a tripartite exotoxin partly responsible for persistent anthrax cytotoxicity after initial bacterial infection. Inhibitors of the zinc metalloproteinase have been investigated as potential therapeutic agents, but LF is a challenging target because inhibitors lack sufficient selectivity or possess poor pharmaceutical properties. These structural studies reveal an alternate conformation of the enzyme, induced upon binding of specific inhibitors, that opens a previously unobserved deep pocket termed S1'(∗) which might afford new opportunities to design selective inhibitors that target this subsite. PMID:26578066

  9. Capsules, toxins and AtxA as virulence factors of emerging Bacillus cereus biovar anthracis.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christophe Brézillon

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available Emerging B. cereus strains that cause anthrax-like disease have been isolated in Cameroon (CA strain and Côte d'Ivoire (CI strain. These strains are unusual, because their genomic characterisation shows that they belong to the B. cereus species, although they harbour two plasmids, pBCXO1 and pBCXO2, that are highly similar to the pXO1 and pXO2 plasmids of B. anthracis that encode the toxins and the polyglutamate capsule respectively. The virulence factors implicated in the pathogenicity of these B. cereus bv anthracis strains remain to be characterised. We tested their virulence by cutaneous and intranasal delivery in mice and guinea pigs; they were as virulent as wild-type B. anthracis. Unlike as described for pXO2-cured B. anthracis, the CA strain cured of the pBCXO2 plasmid was still highly virulent, showing the existence of other virulence factors. Indeed, these strains concomitantly expressed a hyaluronic acid (HA capsule and the B. anthracis polyglutamate (PDGA capsule. The HA capsule was encoded by the hasACB operon on pBCXO1, and its expression was regulated by the global transcription regulator AtxA, which controls anthrax toxins and PDGA capsule in B. anthracis. Thus, the HA and PDGA capsules and toxins were co-regulated by AtxA. We explored the respective effect of the virulence factors on colonisation and dissemination of CA within its host by constructing bioluminescent mutants. Expression of the HA capsule by itself led to local multiplication and, during intranasal infection, to local dissemination to the adjacent brain tissue. Co-expression of either toxins or PDGA capsule with HA capsule enabled systemic dissemination, thus providing a clear evolutionary advantage. Protection against infection by B. cereus bv anthracis required the same vaccination formulation as that used against B. anthracis. Thus, these strains, at the frontier between B. anthracis and B. cereus, provide insight into how the monomorphic B. anthracis may have

  10. Glycerol Monolaurate Inhibits Virulence Factor Production in Bacillus anthracis

    OpenAIRE

    Vetter, Sara M; Schlievert, Patrick M.

    2005-01-01

    Anthrax, caused by Bacillus anthracis, has been brought to the public's attention because of the 2001 bioterrorism attacks. However, anthrax is a disease that poses agricultural threats in the United States as well as human populations in Europe, China, Africa, and Australia. Glycerol monolaurate (GML) is a compound that has been shown to inhibit exotoxin production by Staphylococcus aureus and other gram-positive bacteria. Here, we study the effects of GML on growth and toxin production in B...

  11. Noncapsulated Toxinogenic Bacillus anthracis Presents a Specific Growth and Dissemination Pattern in Naive and Protective Antigen-Immune Mice▿

    OpenAIRE

    Glomski, Ian J.; Corre, Jean-Philippe; Mock, Michèle; Goossens, Pierre L

    2007-01-01

    Bacillus anthracis is a spore-forming bacterium that causes anthrax. B. anthracis has three major virulence factors, namely, lethal toxin, edema toxin, and a poly-γ-d-glutamic acid capsule. The toxins modulate host immune responses, and the capsule inhibits phagocytosis. With the goal of increasing safety, decreasing security concerns, and taking advantage of mammalian genetic tools and reagents, mouse models of B. anthracis infection have been developed using attenuated bacteria that produce...

  12. The poly-γ-d-glutamic acid capsule surrogate of the Bacillus anthracis capsule induces nitric oxide production via the platelet activating factor receptor signaling pathway.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Hae-Ri; Jeon, Jun Ho; Park, Ok-Kyu; Chun, Jeong-Hoon; Park, Jungchan; Rhie, Gi-Eun

    2015-12-01

    The poly-γ-d-glutamic acid (PGA) capsule, a major virulence factor of Bacillus anthracis, confers protection of the bacillus from phagocytosis and allows its unimpeded growth in the host. PGA capsules released from B. anthracis are associated with lethal toxin in the blood of experimentally infected animals and enhance the cytotoxic effect of lethal toxin on macrophages. In addition, PGA capsule itself activates macrophages and dendritic cells to produce proinflammatory cytokine such as IL-1β, indicating multiple roles of PGA capsule in anthrax pathogenesis. Here we report that PGA capsule of Bacillus licheniformis, a surrogate of B. anthracis capsule, induces production of nitric oxide (NO) in RAW264.7 cells and bone marrow-derived macrophages. NO production was induced by PGA in a dose-dependent manner and was markedly reduced by inhibitors of inducible NO synthase (iNOS), suggesting iNOS-dependent production of NO. Induction of NO production by PGA was not observed in macrophages from TLR2-deficient mice and was also substantially inhibited in RAW264.7 cells by pretreatment of TLR2 blocking antibody. Subsequently, the downstream signaling events such as ERK, JNK and p38 of MAPK pathways as well as NF-κB activation were required for PGA-induced NO production. In addition, the induced NO production was significantly suppressed by treatment with antagonists of platelet activating factor receptor (PAFR) or PAFR siRNA, and mediated through PAFR/Jak2/STAT-1 signaling pathway. These findings suggest that PGA capsule induces NO production in macrophages by triggering both TLR2 and PAFR signaling pathways which lead to activation of NF-kB and STAT-1, respectively. PMID:26350415

  13. Modulation of the Bacillus anthracis Secretome by the Immune Inhibitor A1 Protease

    OpenAIRE

    Pflughoeft, Kathryn J.; Swick, Michelle C.; Engler, David A.; Yeo, Hye-Jeong; Koehler, Theresa M.

    2014-01-01

    The Bacillus anthracis secretome includes protective antigen, lethal factor, and edema factor, which are the components of anthrax toxin, and other proteins with known or potential roles in anthrax disease. Immune inhibitor A1 (InhA1) is a secreted metalloprotease that is unique to pathogenic members of the Bacillus genus and has been associated with cleavage of host proteins during infection. Here, we report the effect of InhA1 on the B. anthracis secretome. Differential in-gel electrophores...

  14. In vivo dynamics of active edema and lethal factors during anthrax.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rougeaux, Clémence; Becher, François; Ezan, Eric; Tournier, Jean-Nicolas; Goossens, Pierre L

    2016-01-01

    Lethal and edema toxins are critical virulence factors of Bacillus anthracis. However, little is known about their in vivo dynamics of production during anthrax. In this study, we unraveled for the first time the in vivo kinetics of production of the toxin components EF (edema factor) and LF (lethal factor) during cutaneous infection with a wild-type toxinogenic encapsulated strain in immuno-competent mice. We stratified the asynchronous infection process into defined stages through bioluminescence imaging (BLI), while exploiting sensitive quantitative methods by measuring the enzymatic activity of LF and EF. LF was produced in high amounts, while EF amounts steadily increased during the infectious process. This led to high LF/EF ratios throughout the infection, with variations between 50 to a few thousands. In the bloodstream, the early detection of active LF and EF despite the absence of bacteria suggests that they may exert long distance effects. Infection with a strain deficient in the protective antigen toxin component enabled to address its role in the diffusion of LF and EF within the host. Our data provide a picture of the in vivo complexity of the infectious process. PMID:26996161

  15. A Bacillus anthracis strain deleted for six proteases serves as an effective host for production of recombinant proteins

    OpenAIRE

    Pomerantsev, Andrei P.; Pomerantseva, Olga M.; Moayeri, Mahtab; Fattah, Rasem; Tallant, Cynthia; Leppla, Stephen H.

    2011-01-01

    Bacillus anthracis produces a number of extracellular proteases that impact the integrity and yield of other proteins in the B. anthracis secretome. In this study we show that anthrolysin O (ALO) and the three anthrax toxin proteins, protective antigen (PA), lethal factor (LF), and edema factor (EF), produced from the B. anthracis Ames 35 strain (pXO1+, pXO2−), are completely degraded at the onset of stationary phase due to the action of proteases. An improved Cre-loxP gene knockout system wa...

  16. Anthrolysin O and fermentation products mediate the toxicity of Bacillus anthracis to lung epithelial cells under microaerobic conditions

    OpenAIRE

    Popova, Taissia G.; Millis, Bryan; Chung, Myung-Chul; Bailey, Charles; Popov, Serguei G

    2010-01-01

    Bacillus anthracis generates virulence factors such as lethal and edema toxins, capsule, and hemolytic proteins under conditions of reduced oxygenation. Here, we report on the acute cytotoxicity of culture supernatants (Sups) of six nonencapsulated B. anthracis strains grown till the stationary phase under static microaerobic conditions. Human small airway epithelial, umbilical vein endothelial, Caco-2, and Hep-G2 cells were found to be susceptible. Sups displayed a reduction of pH to 5.3–5.5...

  17. The Early Humoral Immune Response to Bacillus anthracis Toxins in Patients Infected with Cutaneous Anthrax

    OpenAIRE

    Doganay, Mehmet; Brenneman, Karen E.; Akmal, Arya; Goldman, Stanley; Galloway, Darrell R.; Mateczun, Alfred J; Cross, Alan S.; Baillie, Leslie W.

    2011-01-01

    Bacillus anthracis, the causative agent of anthrax, elaborates a tripartite toxin composed of two enzymatically active subunits, lethal factor (LF) and edema factor (EF) which, when associated with a cell-binding component, protective antigen (PA), form lethal toxin (LT) and edema toxin (ET), respectively. In this preliminary study we characterised the toxin-specific antibody responses observed in 17 individuals infected with cutaneous anthrax. The majority of the toxin-specific antibody resp...

  18. Highly predictive support vector machine (SVM) models for anthrax toxin lethal factor (LF) inhibitors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Xia; Amin, Elizabeth Ambrose

    2016-01-01

    Anthrax is a highly lethal, acute infectious disease caused by the rod-shaped, Gram-positive bacterium Bacillus anthracis. The anthrax toxin lethal factor (LF), a zinc metalloprotease secreted by the bacilli, plays a key role in anthrax pathogenesis and is chiefly responsible for anthrax-related toxemia and host death, partly via inactivation of mitogen-activated protein kinase kinase (MAPKK) enzymes and consequent disruption of key cellular signaling pathways. Antibiotics such as fluoroquinolones are capable of clearing the bacilli but have no effect on LF-mediated toxemia; LF itself therefore remains the preferred target for toxin inactivation. However, currently no LF inhibitor is available on the market as a therapeutic, partly due to the insufficiency of existing LF inhibitor scaffolds in terms of efficacy, selectivity, and toxicity. In the current work, we present novel support vector machine (SVM) models with high prediction accuracy that are designed to rapidly identify potential novel, structurally diverse LF inhibitor chemical matter from compound libraries. These SVM models were trained and validated using 508 compounds with published LF biological activity data and 847 inactive compounds deposited in the Pub Chem BioAssay database. One model, M1, demonstrated particularly favorable selectivity toward highly active compounds by correctly predicting 39 (95.12%) out of 41 nanomolar-level LF inhibitors, 46 (93.88%) out of 49 inactives, and 844 (99.65%) out of 847 Pub Chem inactives in external, unbiased test sets. These models are expected to facilitate the prediction of LF inhibitory activity for existing molecules, as well as identification of novel potential LF inhibitors from large datasets. PMID:26615468

  19. Sublethal Doses of Anthrax Lethal Toxin on the Suppression of Macrophage Phagocytosis

    OpenAIRE

    Kau, Jyh-Hwa; Sun, Der-Shan; Huang, Hsuan-Shun; Lien, Te-Sheng; Huang, Hsin-Hsien; Lin, Hung-Chi; Chang, Hsin-Hou

    2010-01-01

    Background Lethal toxin (LT), the major virulence factor produced by Bacillus anthracis, has been shown to suppress the immune system, which is beneficial to the establishment of B. anthracis infections. It has been suggested that the suppression of MEK/MAPK signaling pathways of leukocytes contributes to LT-mediated immunosuppressive effects. However, the involvement of MAPK independent pathways has not been clearly elucidated; nor has the crucial role played by LT in the early stages of inf...

  20. Preparation and characterization of cobalt-substituted anthrax lethal factor

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Highlights: ► Cobalt-substituted anthrax lethal factor (CoLF) is highly active. ► CoLF can be prepared by bio-assimilation and direct exchange. ► Lethal factor binds cobalt tightly. ► The electronic spectrum of CoLF reveals penta-coordination. ► Interaction of CoLF with thioglycolic acid follows a 2-step mechanism. -- Abstract: Anthrax lethal factor (LF) is a zinc-dependent endopeptidase involved in the cleavage of mitogen-activated protein kinase kinases near their N-termini. The current report concerns the preparation of cobalt-substituted LF (CoLF) and its characterization by electronic spectroscopy. Two strategies to produce CoLF were explored, including (i) a bio-assimilation approach involving the cultivation of LF-expressing Bacillus megaterium cells in the presence of CoCl2, and (ii) direct exchange by treatment of zinc-LF with CoCl2. Independent of the method employed, the protein was found to contain one Co2+ per LF molecule, and was shown to be twice as active as its native zinc counterpart. The electronic spectrum of CoLF suggests the Co2+ ion to be five-coordinate, an observation similar to that reported for other Co2+-substituted gluzincins, but distinct from that documented for the crystal structure of native LF. Furthermore, spectroscopic studies following the exposure of CoLF to thioglycolic acid (TGA) revealed a sequential mechanism of metal removal from LF, which likely involves the formation of an enzyme: Co2+:TGA ternary complex prior to demetallation of the active site. CoLF reported herein constitutes the first spectroscopic probe of LF’s active site, which may be utilized in future studies to gain further insight into the enzyme’s mechanism and inhibitor interactions.

  1. Direct proteolytic cleavage of NLRP1B is necessary and sufficient for inflammasome activation by anthrax lethal factor.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Joseph Chavarría-Smith

    Full Text Available Inflammasomes are multimeric protein complexes that respond to infection by recruitment and activation of the Caspase-1 (CASP1 protease. Activated CASP1 initiates immune defense by processing inflammatory cytokines and by causing a rapid and lytic cell death called pyroptosis. Inflammasome formation is orchestrated by members of the nucleotide-binding domain and leucine-rich repeat (NLR or AIM2-like receptor (ALR protein families. Certain NLRs and ALRs have been shown to function as direct receptors for specific microbial ligands, such as flagellin or DNA, but the molecular mechanism responsible for activation of most NLRs is still poorly understood. Here we determine the mechanism of activation of the NLRP1B inflammasome in mice. NLRP1B, and its ortholog in rats, is activated by the lethal factor (LF protease that is a key virulence factor secreted by Bacillus anthracis, the causative agent of anthrax. LF was recently shown to cleave mouse and rat NLRP1 directly. However, it is unclear if cleavage is sufficient for NLRP1 activation. Indeed, other LF-induced cellular events have been suggested to play a role in NLRP1B activation. Surprisingly, we show that direct cleavage of NLRP1B is sufficient to induce inflammasome activation in the absence of LF. Our results therefore rule out the need for other LF-dependent cellular effects in activation of NLRP1B. We therefore propose that NLRP1 functions primarily as a sensor of protease activity and thus could conceivably detect a broader spectrum of pathogens than just B. anthracis. By adding proteolytic cleavage to the previously established ligand-receptor mechanism of NLR activation, our results illustrate the remarkable flexibility with which the NLR architecture can be deployed for the purpose of pathogen-detection and host defense.

  2. Profiling lethal factor interacting proteins from human stomach using T7 phage display screening.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cardona-Correa, Albin; Rios-Velazquez, Carlos

    2016-05-01

    The anthrax lethal factor (LF) is a zinc dependent metalloproteinase that cleaves the majority of mitogen-activated protein kinase kinases and a member of NOD-like receptor proteins, inducing cell apoptosis. Despite efforts to fully understand the Bacillus anthracis toxin components, the gastrointestinal (GI) anthrax mechanisms have not been fully elucidated. Previous studies demonstrated gastric ulceration, and a substantial bacterial growth rate in Peyer's patches. However, the complete molecular pathways of the disease that results in tissue damage by LF proteolytic activity remains unclear. In the present study, to identify the profile of the proteins potentially involved in GI anthrax, protein‑protein interactions were investigated using human stomach T7 phage display (T7PD) cDNA libraries. T7PD is a high throughput technique that allows the expression of cloned DNA sequences as peptides on the phage surface, enabling the selection and identification of protein ligands. A wild type and mutant LF (E687A) were used to differentiate interaction sites. A total of 124 clones were identified from 194 interacting‑phages, at both the DNA and protein level, by in silico analysis. Databases revealed that the selected candidates were proteins from different families including lipase, peptidase‑A1 and cation transport families, among others. Furthermore, individual T7PD candidates were tested against LF in order to detect their specificity to the target molecule, resulting in 10 LF‑interacting peptides. With a minimum concentration of LF for interaction at 1 µg/ml, the T7PD isolated pepsin A3 pre‑protein (PAP) demonstrated affinity to both types of LF. In addition, PAP was isolated in various lengths for the same protein, exhibiting common regions following PRALINE alignment. These findings will help elucidate and improve the understanding of the molecular pathogenesis of GI anthrax, and aid in the development of potential therapeutic agents. PMID

  3. Preparation and characterization of cobalt-substituted anthrax lethal factor

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Saebel, Crystal E.; Carbone, Ryan; Dabous, John R.; Lo, Suet Y. [Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, Laurentian University, 935 Ramsey Lake Rd., Sudbury, Ontario, Canada P3E 2C6 (Canada); Siemann, Stefan, E-mail: ssiemann@laurentian.ca [Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, Laurentian University, 935 Ramsey Lake Rd., Sudbury, Ontario, Canada P3E 2C6 (Canada)

    2011-12-09

    Highlights: Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Cobalt-substituted anthrax lethal factor (CoLF) is highly active. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer CoLF can be prepared by bio-assimilation and direct exchange. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Lethal factor binds cobalt tightly. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer The electronic spectrum of CoLF reveals penta-coordination. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Interaction of CoLF with thioglycolic acid follows a 2-step mechanism. -- Abstract: Anthrax lethal factor (LF) is a zinc-dependent endopeptidase involved in the cleavage of mitogen-activated protein kinase kinases near their N-termini. The current report concerns the preparation of cobalt-substituted LF (CoLF) and its characterization by electronic spectroscopy. Two strategies to produce CoLF were explored, including (i) a bio-assimilation approach involving the cultivation of LF-expressing Bacillus megaterium cells in the presence of CoCl{sub 2}, and (ii) direct exchange by treatment of zinc-LF with CoCl{sub 2}. Independent of the method employed, the protein was found to contain one Co{sup 2+} per LF molecule, and was shown to be twice as active as its native zinc counterpart. The electronic spectrum of CoLF suggests the Co{sup 2+} ion to be five-coordinate, an observation similar to that reported for other Co{sup 2+}-substituted gluzincins, but distinct from that documented for the crystal structure of native LF. Furthermore, spectroscopic studies following the exposure of CoLF to thioglycolic acid (TGA) revealed a sequential mechanism of metal removal from LF, which likely involves the formation of an enzyme: Co{sup 2+}:TGA ternary complex prior to demetallation of the active site. CoLF reported herein constitutes the first spectroscopic probe of LF's active site, which may be utilized in future studies to gain further insight into the enzyme's mechanism and inhibitor interactions.

  4. Passive protection by polyclonal antibodies against Bacillus anthracis infection in guinea pigs.

    OpenAIRE

    Little, S F; Ivins, B E; Fellows, P F; Friedlander, A M

    1997-01-01

    The protective effects of polyclonal antisera produced by injecting guinea pigs with protective antigen (PA), the chemical anthrax vaccine AVA, or Sterne spore vaccine, as well as those of toxin-neutralizing monoclonal antibodies (MAbs) produced against PA, lethal factor, and edema factor, were examined in animals infected with Bacillus anthracis spores. Only the anti-PA polyclonal serum significantly protected the guinea pigs from death, with 67% of infected animals surviving. Although none ...

  5. Tumour necrosis factor alpha antibody protects against lethal meningococcaemia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nassif, X; Mathison, J C; Wolfson, E; Koziol, J A; Ulevitch, R J; So, M

    1992-03-01

    Tumour necrosis factor alpha (TNF-alpha) has been shown to be the principal mediator of Gram-negative bacterial endotoxin-induced shock. Nevertheless, evidence suggests that TNF-alpha plays a beneficial role in controlling bacterial infections when multiplication of the microorganism is required to kill the host. Using an infant rat model of Neisseria meningitidis infection, we found that blood TNF-alpha concentration reaches a peak three hours after intraperitoneal injection of 3 x 10(6) bacteria. Thereafter, the level of TNF-alpha decreased and was undetectable six to eight hours after infection. A correlation was observed between the magnitude of initial TNF-alpha response and a fatal outcome. Pretreatment of the animals with polyclonal anti-TNF antiserum significantly reduced mortality relative to animals pretreated with control serum. However, pretreatment of animals with anti-TNF antibody did not alter the bacterial invasion of the cerebrospinal fluid. Injection of heat-killed bacteria did not cause death and induced lower TNF-alpha levels than the same number of live bacteria. This excludes the possibility that the role of TNF-alpha is to mediate a shock induced by the endotoxin component of the bacterial inoculum. These results indicate that TNF-alpha has a deleterious effect in this model of bacteraemia. Identification of the critical factors that determine the action of TNF-alpha during lethal bacteraemia will lead to a better understanding of these diseases and the development of appropriate therapeutic intervention. PMID:1552859

  6. Bacillus anthracis

    OpenAIRE

    2003-01-01

    The events of 11 September 2001 and the subsequent anthrax outbreaks have shown that the West needs to be prepared for an increasing number of terrorist attacks, which may include the use of biological warfare. Bacillus anthracis has long been considered a potential biological warfare agent, and this review will discuss the history of its use as such. It will also cover the biology of this organism and the clinical features of the three disease forms that it can produce: cutaneous, gastrointe...

  7. Bacillus anthracis

    OpenAIRE

    BOSERET, GÉRALDINE; Linden, Annick; Mainil, Jacques

    2002-01-01

    The literature describes several methods for detection of Bacillus anthracis based on application of specific bacteriophages. The following methods of pahoinpitely are used to identify the causative agent of anthrax: the reaction of bacteriophage titer growth (RBTG), the reaction of phage adsorption (RPA), fagoterapii method (FTM) and fluorescentserological method (FSM). The essence of RBTG consists in the following: if there is the researchform of bacteria presents in the test material, then...

  8. The Bacillus anthracis cholesterol-dependent cytolysin, Anthrolysin O, kills human neutrophils, monocytes and macrophages

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rest Richard F

    2006-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Bacillus anthracis is an animal and human pathogen whose virulence is characterized by lethal and edema toxin, as well as a poly-glutamic acid capsule. In addition to these well characterized toxins, B. anthracis secretes several proteases and phospholipases, and a newly described toxin of the cholesterol-dependent cytolysin (CDC family, Anthrolysin O (ALO. Results In the present studies we show that recombinant ALO (rALO or native ALO, secreted by viable B. anthracis, is lethal to human primary polymorphonuclear leukocytes (PMNs, monocytes, monocyte-derived macrophages (MDMs, lymphocytes, THP-1 monocytic human cell line and ME-180, Detroit 562, and A549 epithelial cells by trypan blue exclusion or lactate dehydrogenase (LDH release viability assays. ALO cytotoxicity is dose and time dependent and susceptibility to ALO-mediated lysis differs between cell types. In addition, the viability of monocytes and hMDMs was assayed in the presence of vegetative Sterne strains 7702 (ALO+, UT231 (ALO-, and a complemented strain expressing ALO, UT231 (pUTE544, and was dependent upon the expression of ALO. Cytotoxicity of rALO is seen as low as 0.070 nM in the absence of serum. All direct cytotoxic activity is inhibited by the addition of cholesterol or serum concentration as low as 10%. Conclusion The lethality of rALO and native ALO on human monocytes, neutrophils, macrophages and lymphocytes supports the idea that ALO may represent a previously unidentified virulence factor of B. anthracis. The study of other factors produced by B. anthracis, along with the major anthrax toxins, will lead to a better understanding of this bacterium's pathogenesis, as well as provide information for the development of antitoxin vaccines for treating and preventing anthrax.

  9. BslA, the S-layer adhesin of B. anthracis, is a virulence factor for anthrax pathogenesis

    OpenAIRE

    Kern, Justin; Schneewind, Olaf

    2009-01-01

    Microbial pathogens use adhesive surface proteins to bind to and interact with host tissues, events that are universal for the pathogenesis of infectious diseases. A surface adhesin of Bacillus anthracis, the causative agent of anthrax, required to mediate these steps has not been discovered. Previous work identified BslA, an S-layer protein, to be necessary and sufficient for adhesion of the anthrax vaccine strain, Bacillus anthracis Sterne, to host cells. Here we asked whether encapsulated ...

  10. Lifestyle and dietary factors in the prevention of lethal prostate cancer

    OpenAIRE

    Wilson, Kathryn M.; Giovannucci, Edward L.; Mucci, Lorelei A.

    2012-01-01

    The prevention of lethal prostate cancer is a critical public health challenge that would improve health and reduce suffering from this disease. In this review, we discuss the evidence surrounding specific lifestyle and dietary factors in the prevention of lethal prostate cancer. We present a summary of evidence for the following selected behavioral risk factors: obesity and weight change, physical activity, smoking, antioxidant intake, vitamin D and calcium, and coffee intake.

  11. Lifestyle and dietary factors in the prevention of lethal prostate cancer

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Kathryn M Wilson; Edward L Giovannucci; Lorelei A Mucci

    2012-01-01

    The prevention of lethal prostate cancer is a critical public health challenge that would improve health and reduce suffering from this disease.In this review,we discuss the evidence surrounding specific lifestyle and dietary factors in the prevention of lethal prostate cancer.We present a summary of evidence for the following selected behavioral risk factors:obesity and weight change,physical activity,smoking,antioxidant intake,vitamin D and calcium,and coffee intake.

  12. Mechanism of Lethal Toxin Neutralization by a Human Monoclonal Antibody Specific for the PA20 Region of Bacillus anthracis Protective Antigen

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jessica Camacho

    2011-08-01

    Full Text Available The primary immunogenic component of the currently approved anthrax vaccine is the protective antigen (PA unit of the binary toxin system. PA-specific antibodies neutralize anthrax toxins and protect against infection. Recent research has determined that in humans, only antibodies specific for particular determinants are capable of effecting toxin neutralization, and that the neutralizing epitopes recognized by these antibodies are distributed throughout the PA monomer. The mechanisms by which the majority of these epitopes effect neutralization remain unknown. In this report we investigate the process by which a human monoclonal antibody specific for the amino-terminal domain of PA neutralizes lethal toxin in an in vitro assay of cytotoxicity, and find that it neutralizes LT by blocking the requisite cleavage of the amino-terminal 20 kD portion of the molecule (PA20 from the remainder of the PA monomer. We also demonstrate that the epitope recognized by this human monoclonal does not encompass the 166RKKR169 furin recognition sequence in domain 1 of PA.

  13. Anthrax lethal toxin inhibits translation of hypoxia-inducible factor 1α and causes decreased tolerance to hypoxic stress.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ouyang, Weiming; Torigoe, Chikako; Fang, Hui; Xie, Tao; Frucht, David M

    2014-02-14

    Hypoxia is considered to be a contributor to the pathology associated with administration of anthrax lethal toxin (LT). However, we report here that serum lactate levels in LT-treated mice are reduced, a finding inconsistent with the anaerobic metabolism expected to occur during hypoxia. Reduced lactate levels are also observed in the culture supernatants of LT-treated cells. LT inhibits the accumulation of hypoxia-inducible factor (HIF)-1α, a subunit of HIF-1, the master regulator directing cellular responses to hypoxia. The toxin has no effect on the transcription or protein turnover of HIF-1α, but instead it acts to inhibit HIF-1α translation. LT treatment diminishes phosphorylation of eIF4B, eIF4E, and rpS6, critical components of the intracellular machinery required for HIF-1α translation. Moreover, blockade of MKK1/2-ERK1/2, but not p38 or JNK signaling, lowers HIF-1α protein levels in both normoxic and hypoxic conditions, consistent with a role for MKK1 and MKK2 as the major targets of LT responsible for the inhibition of HIF-1α translation. The physiological importance of the LT-induced translation blockade is demonstrated by the finding that LT treatment decreases the survival of hepatocyte cell lines grown in hypoxic conditions, an effect that is overcome by preinduction of HIF-1α. Taken together, these data support a role for LT in dysregulating HIF-1α and thereby disrupting homeostatic responses to hypoxia, an environmental characteristic of certain tissues at baseline and/or during disseminated infection with Bacillus anthracis. PMID:24366872

  14. Detection of Anthrax Toxin in the Serum of Animals Infected with Bacillus anthracis by Using Engineered Immunoassays

    OpenAIRE

    Mabry, Robert; Brasky, Kathleen; Geiger, Robert; Carrion, Ricardo; Hubbard, Gene B; Leppla, Stephen; Patterson, Jean L.; Georgiou, George; Iverson, B L

    2006-01-01

    Several strategies that target anthrax toxin are being developed as therapies for infection by Bacillus anthracis. Although the action of the tripartite anthrax toxin has been extensively studied in vitro, relatively little is known about the presence of toxins during an infection in vivo. We developed a series of sensitive sandwich enzyme-linked immunosorbent assays (ELISAs) for detection of both the protective antigen (PA) and lethal factor (LF) components of the anthrax exotoxin in serum. ...

  15. Different Roles of N-Terminal and C-Terminal Domains in Calmodulin for Activation of Bacillus anthracis Edema Factor

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carolin Lübker

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available Bacillus anthracis adenylyl cyclase toxin edema factor (EF is one component of the anthrax toxin and is essential for establishing anthrax disease. EF activation by the eukaryotic Ca2+-sensor calmodulin (CaM leads to massive cAMP production resulting in edema. cAMP also inhibits the nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide phosphate (NADPH-oxidase, thus reducing production of reactive oxygen species (ROS used for host defense in activated neutrophils and thereby facilitating bacterial growth. Methionine (Met residues in CaM, important for interactions between CaM and its binding partners, can be oxidized by ROS. We investigated the impact of site-specific oxidation of Met in CaM on EF activation using thirteen CaM-mutants (CaM-mut with Met to leucine (Leu substitutions. EF activation shows high resistance to oxidative modifications in CaM. An intact structure in the C-terminal region of oxidized CaM is sufficient for major EF activation despite altered secondary structure in the N-terminal region associated with Met oxidation. The secondary structures of CaM-mut were determined and described in previous studies from our group. Thus, excess cAMP production and the associated impairment of host defence may be afforded even under oxidative conditions in activated neutrophils.

  16. Modulation of the Bacillus anthracis secretome by the immune inhibitor A1 protease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pflughoeft, Kathryn J; Swick, Michelle C; Engler, David A; Yeo, Hye-Jeong; Koehler, Theresa M

    2014-01-01

    The Bacillus anthracis secretome includes protective antigen, lethal factor, and edema factor, which are the components of anthrax toxin, and other proteins with known or potential roles in anthrax disease. Immune inhibitor A1 (InhA1) is a secreted metalloprotease that is unique to pathogenic members of the Bacillus genus and has been associated with cleavage of host proteins during infection. Here, we report the effect of InhA1 on the B. anthracis secretome. Differential in-gel electrophoresis of proteins present in culture supernatants from a parent strain and an isogenic inhA1-null mutant revealed multiple differences. Of the 1,340 protein spots observed, approximately one-third were less abundant and one-third were more abundant in the inhA1 secretome than in the parent strain secretome. Proteases were strongly represented among those proteins exhibiting a 9-fold or greater change. InhA1 purified from a B. anthracis culture supernatant directly cleaved each of the anthrax toxin proteins as well as an additional secreted protease, Npr599. The conserved zinc binding motif HEXXH of InhA1 (HEYGH) was critical for its proteolytic activity. Our data reveal that InhA1 directly and indirectly modulates the form and/or abundance of over half of all the secreted proteins of B. anthracis. The proteolytic activity of InhA1 on established secreted virulence factors, additional proteases, and other secreted proteins suggests that this major protease plays an important role in virulence not only by cleaving mammalian substrates but also by modulating the B. anthracis secretome itself. PMID:24214942

  17. A Bacillus anthracis strain deleted for six proteases serves as an effective host for production of recombinant proteins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pomerantsev, Andrei P; Pomerantseva, Olga M; Moayeri, Mahtab; Fattah, Rasem; Tallant, Cynthia; Leppla, Stephen H

    2011-11-01

    Bacillus anthracis produces a number of extracellular proteases that impact the integrity and yield of other proteins in the B. anthracis secretome. In this study we show that anthrolysin O (ALO) and the three anthrax toxin proteins, protective antigen (PA), lethal factor (LF), and edema factor (EF), produced from the B. anthracis Ames 35 strain (pXO1⁺, pXO2⁻), are completely degraded at the onset of stationary phase due to the action of proteases. An improved Cre-loxP gene knockout system was used to sequentially delete the genes encoding six proteases (InhA1, InhA2, camelysin, TasA, NprB, and MmpZ). The role of each protease in degradation of the B. anthracis toxin components and ALO was demonstrated. Levels of the anthrax toxin components and ALO in the supernatant of the sporulation defective, pXO1⁺ A35HMS mutant strain deleted for the six proteases were significantly increased and remained stable over 24 h. A pXO1-free variant of this six-protease mutant strain, designated BH460, provides an improved host strain for the preparation of recombinant proteins. As an example, BH460 was used to produce recombinant EF, which previously has been difficult to obtain from B. anthracis. The EF protein produced from BH460 had the highest in vivo potency of any EF previously purified from B. anthracis or Escherichia coli hosts. BH460 is recommended as an effective host strain for recombinant protein production, typically yielding greater than 10mg pure protein per liter of culture. PMID:21827967

  18. Anthrax lethal factor as an immune target in humans and transgenic mice and the impact of HLA polymorphism on CD4+ T cell immunity.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stephanie Ascough

    2014-05-01

    Full Text Available Bacillus anthracis produces a binary toxin composed of protective antigen (PA and one of two subunits, lethal factor (LF or edema factor (EF. Most studies have concentrated on induction of toxin-specific antibodies as the correlate of protective immunity, in contrast to which understanding of cellular immunity to these toxins and its impact on infection is limited. We characterized CD4+ T cell immunity to LF in a panel of humanized HLA-DR and DQ transgenic mice and in naturally exposed patients. As the variation in antigen presentation governed by HLA polymorphism has a major impact on protective immunity to specific epitopes, we examined relative binding affinities of LF peptides to purified HLA class II molecules, identifying those regions likely to be of broad applicability to human immune studies through their ability to bind multiple alleles. Transgenics differing only in their expression of human HLA class II alleles showed a marked hierarchy of immunity to LF. Immunogenicity in HLA transgenics was primarily restricted to epitopes from domains II and IV of LF and promiscuous, dominant epitopes, common to all HLA types, were identified in domain II. The relevance of this model was further demonstrated by the fact that a number of the immunodominant epitopes identified in mice were recognized by T cells from humans previously infected with cutaneous anthrax and from vaccinated individuals. The ability of the identified epitopes to confer protective immunity was demonstrated by lethal anthrax challenge of HLA transgenic mice immunized with a peptide subunit vaccine comprising the immunodominant epitopes that we identified.

  19. Lethality by pneumonia and factors associated to death

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sidnei Ferreira

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available OBJECTIVE: To describe the case-fatality rate (CFR and risk factors of death in children with community-acquired acute pneumonia (CAP in a pediatric university hospital. METHOD: A longitudinal study was developed with prospective data collected from 1996 to 2011. Patients aged 1 month to 12 years were included in the study. Those who left the hospital against medical orders and those transferred to ICU or other units were excluded. Demographic andclinical-etiological characteristics and the initial treatment were studied. Variables associated to death were determined by bivariate and multivariate analysis using logistic regression. RESULTS: A total of 871 patients were selected, of whom 11 were excluded; thus 860 children were included in the study. There were 26 deaths, with a CFR of 3%; in 58.7% of these, penicillin G was the initial treatment. Pneumococcus was the most common pathogen (50.4%. From 1996 to 2000, there were 24 deaths (93%, with a CFR of 5.8% (24/413. From 2001 to 2011, the age group of hospitalized patients was older (p = 0.03, and the number of deaths (p = 0.02 and the percentage of disease severity were lower (p = 0.06. Only disease severity remained associated to death in the multivariate analysis (OR = 3.2; 95%CI: 1.2-8.9; p = 0.02. CONCLUSION: When the 1996-2000 and 2001-2011 periods were compared, a significant reduction in CFR was observed in the latter, as well as a change in the clinical profile of the pediatric in patients at the institute. These findings may be related to the improvement in the socio-economical status of the population. Penicillin use did not influence CFR.

  20. Matrix Assisted Laser Desorption Ionization Mass Spectrometric Analysis of Bacillus anthracis: From Fingerprint Analysis of the Bacterium to Quantification of its Toxins in Clinical Samples

    Science.gov (United States)

    Woolfitt, Adrian R.; Boyer, Anne E.; Quinn, Conrad P.; Hoffmaster, Alex R.; Kozel, Thomas R.; de, Barun K.; Gallegos, Maribel; Moura, Hercules; Pirkle, James L.; Barr, John R.

    A range of mass spectrometry-based techniques have been used to identify, characterize and differentiate Bacillus anthracis, both in culture for forensic applications and for diagnosis during infection. This range of techniques could usefully be considered to exist as a continuum, based on the degrees of specificity involved. We show two examples here, a whole-organism fingerprinting method and a high-specificity assay for one unique protein, anthrax lethal factor.

  1. Bacillus anthracis Capsule Activates Caspase-1 and Induces Interleukin-1β Release from Differentiated THP-1 and Human Monocyte-Derived Dendritic Cells▿ †

    OpenAIRE

    Cho, Min-Hee; Ahn, Hae-Jeong; Ha, Hyun-Joon; Park, Jungchan; Chun, Jeong-Hoon; Kim, Bong-Su; Oh, Hee-Bok; Rhie, Gi-eun

    2009-01-01

    The poly-γ-d-glutamic acid (PGA) capsule is one of the major virulence factors of Bacillus anthracis, which causes a highly lethal infection. The antiphagocytic PGA capsule disguises the bacilli from immune surveillance and allows unimpeded growth of bacilli in the host. Recently, efforts have been made to include PGA as a component of anthrax vaccine; however, the innate immune response of PGA itself has been poorly investigated. In this study, we characterized the innate immune response eli...

  2. Recombinant expression and purification of a tumor-targeted toxin in Bacillus anthracis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bachran, Christopher; Abdelazim, Suzanne; Fattah, Rasem J; Liu, Shihui; Leppla, Stephen H

    2013-01-01

    Many recombinant therapeutic proteins are purified from Escherichia coli. While expression in E. coli is easily achieved, some disadvantages such as protein aggregation, formation of inclusion bodies, and contamination of purified proteins with the lipopolysaccharides arise. Lipopolysaccharides have to be removed to prevent inflammatory responses in patients. Use of the Gram-positive Bacillus anthracis as an expression host offers a solution to circumvent these problems. Using the multiple protease-deficient strain BH460, we expressed a fusion of the N-terminal 254 amino acids of anthrax lethal factor (LFn), the N-terminal 389 amino acids of diphtheria toxin (DT389) and human transforming growth factor alpha (TGFα). The resulting fusion protein was constitutively expressed and successfully secreted by B. anthracis into the culture supernatant. Purification was achieved by anion exchange chromatography and proteolytic cleavage removed LFn from the desired fusion protein (DT389 fused to TGFα). The fusion protein showed the intended specific cytotoxicity to epidermal growth factor receptor-expressing human head and neck cancer cells. Final analyses showed low levels of lipopolysaccharides, originating most likely from contamination during the purification process. Thus, the fusion to LFn for protein secretion and expression in B. anthracis BH460 provides an elegant tool to obtain high levels of lipopolysaccharide-free recombinant protein. PMID:23200832

  3. Myxoma virus M130R is a novel virulence factor required for lethal myxomatosis in rabbits.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barrett, John W; Werden, Steven J; Wang, Fuan; McKillop, William M; Jimenez, June; Villeneuve, Danielle; McFadden, Grant; Dekaban, Gregory A

    2009-09-01

    Myxoma virus (MV) is a highly lethal, rabbit-specific poxvirus that induces a disease called myxomatosis in European rabbits. In an effort to understand the function of predicted immunomodulatory genes we have deleted various viral genes from MV and tested the ability of these knockout viruses to induce lethal myxomatosis. MV encodes a unique 15 kD cytoplasmic protein (M130R) that is expressed late (12h post infection) during infection. M130R is a non-essential gene for MV replication in rabbit, monkey or human cell lines. Construction of a targeted gene knockout virus (vMyx130KO) and infection of susceptible rabbits demonstrate that the M130R knockout virus is attenuated and that loss of M130R expression allows the rabbit host immune system to effectively respond to and control the lethal effects of MV. M130R expression is a bona fide poxviral virulence factor necessary for full and lethal development of myxomatosis. PMID:19477207

  4. Bacillus anthracis Protective Antigen Kinetics in Inhalation Spore-Challenged Untreated or Levofloxacin/ Raxibacumab-Treated New Zealand White Rabbits

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cecil Chen

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Inhaled Bacillus anthracis spores germinate and the subsequent vegetative growth results in bacteremia and toxin production. Anthrax toxin is tripartite: the lethal factor and edema factor are enzymatic moieties, while the protective antigen (PA binds to cell receptors and the enzymatic moieties. Antibiotics can control B. anthracis bacteremia, whereas raxibacumab binds PA and blocks lethal toxin effects. This study assessed plasma PA kinetics in rabbits following an inhaled B. anthracis spore challenge. Additionally, at 84 h post-challenge, 42% of challenged rabbits that had survived were treated with either levofloxacin/placebo or levofloxacin/raxibacumab. The profiles were modeled using a modified Gompertz/second exponential growth phase model in untreated rabbits, with added monoexponential PA elimination in treated rabbits. Shorter survival times were related to a higher plateau and a faster increase in PA levels. PA elimination half-lives were 10 and 19 h for the levofloxacin/placebo and levofloxacin/raxibacumab groups, respectively, with the difference attributable to persistent circulating PA-raxibacumab complex. PA kinetics were similar between untreated and treated rabbits, with one exception: treated rabbits had a plateau phase nearly twice as long as that for untreated rabbits. Treated rabbits that succumbed to disease had higher plateau PA levels and shorter plateau duration than surviving treated rabbits.

  5. Noncapsulated toxinogenic Bacillus anthracis presents a specific growth and dissemination pattern in naive and protective antigen-immune mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Glomski, Ian J; Corre, Jean-Philippe; Mock, Michèle; Goossens, Pierre L

    2007-10-01

    Bacillus anthracis is a spore-forming bacterium that causes anthrax. B. anthracis has three major virulence factors, namely, lethal toxin, edema toxin, and a poly-gamma-D-glutamic acid capsule. The toxins modulate host immune responses, and the capsule inhibits phagocytosis. With the goal of increasing safety, decreasing security concerns, and taking advantage of mammalian genetic tools and reagents, mouse models of B. anthracis infection have been developed using attenuated bacteria that produce toxins but no capsule. While these models have been useful in studying both toxinogenic infections and antitoxin vaccine efficacy, we questioned whether eliminating the capsule changed bacterial growth and dissemination characteristics. Thus, the progression of infection by toxinogenic noncapsulated B. anthracis was analyzed and compared to that by previously reported nontoxinogenic capsulated bacteria, using in vivo bioluminescence imaging. The influence of immunization with the toxin component protective antigen (PA) on the development of infection was also examined. The toxinogenic noncapsulated bacteria were initially confined to the cutaneous site of infection. Bacteria then progressed to the draining lymph nodes and, finally, late in the infection, to the lungs, kidneys, and frequently the gastrointestinal tract. There was minimal colonization of the spleen. PA immunization reduced bacterial growth from the outset and limited infection to the site of inoculation. These in vivo observations show that dissemination by toxinogenic noncapsulated strains differs markedly from that by nontoxinogenic capsulated strains. Additionally, PA immunization counters bacterial growth and dissemination in vivo from the onset of infection. PMID:17635863

  6. Recombinant expression and purification of a tumor-targeted toxin in Bacillus anthracis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Highlights: ► Non-infectious and protease-deficient Bacillus anthracis protein expression system. ► Successful expression and purification of a tumor-targeted fusion protein drug. ► Very low endotoxin contamination of purified protein. ► Efficient protein secretion simplifies purification. ► Functional anti-tumor fusion protein purified. -- Abstract: Many recombinant therapeutic proteins are purified from Escherichia coli. While expression in E. coli is easily achieved, some disadvantages such as protein aggregation, formation of inclusion bodies, and contamination of purified proteins with the lipopolysaccharides arise. Lipopolysaccharides have to be removed to prevent inflammatory responses in patients. Use of the Gram-positive Bacillus anthracis as an expression host offers a solution to circumvent these problems. Using the multiple protease-deficient strain BH460, we expressed a fusion of the N-terminal 254 amino acids of anthrax lethal factor (LFn), the N-terminal 389 amino acids of diphtheria toxin (DT389) and human transforming growth factor alpha (TGFα). The resulting fusion protein was constitutively expressed and successfully secreted by B. anthracis into the culture supernatant. Purification was achieved by anion exchange chromatography and proteolytic cleavage removed LFn from the desired fusion protein (DT389 fused to TGFα). The fusion protein showed the intended specific cytotoxicity to epidermal growth factor receptor-expressing human head and neck cancer cells. Final analyses showed low levels of lipopolysaccharides, originating most likely from contamination during the purification process. Thus, the fusion to LFn for protein secretion and expression in B. anthracis BH460 provides an elegant tool to obtain high levels of lipopolysaccharide-free recombinant protein.

  7. Recombinant expression and purification of a tumor-targeted toxin in Bacillus anthracis

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bachran, Christopher; Abdelazim, Suzanne; Fattah, Rasem J.; Liu, Shihui [National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, MD 20892 (United States); Leppla, Stephen H., E-mail: sleppla@niaid.nih.gov [National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, MD 20892 (United States)

    2013-01-04

    Highlights: Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Non-infectious and protease-deficient Bacillus anthracis protein expression system. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Successful expression and purification of a tumor-targeted fusion protein drug. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Very low endotoxin contamination of purified protein. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Efficient protein secretion simplifies purification. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Functional anti-tumor fusion protein purified. -- Abstract: Many recombinant therapeutic proteins are purified from Escherichia coli. While expression in E. coli is easily achieved, some disadvantages such as protein aggregation, formation of inclusion bodies, and contamination of purified proteins with the lipopolysaccharides arise. Lipopolysaccharides have to be removed to prevent inflammatory responses in patients. Use of the Gram-positive Bacillus anthracis as an expression host offers a solution to circumvent these problems. Using the multiple protease-deficient strain BH460, we expressed a fusion of the N-terminal 254 amino acids of anthrax lethal factor (LFn), the N-terminal 389 amino acids of diphtheria toxin (DT389) and human transforming growth factor alpha (TGF{alpha}). The resulting fusion protein was constitutively expressed and successfully secreted by B. anthracis into the culture supernatant. Purification was achieved by anion exchange chromatography and proteolytic cleavage removed LFn from the desired fusion protein (DT389 fused to TGF{alpha}). The fusion protein showed the intended specific cytotoxicity to epidermal growth factor receptor-expressing human head and neck cancer cells. Final analyses showed low levels of lipopolysaccharides, originating most likely from contamination during the purification process. Thus, the fusion to LFn for protein secretion and expression in B. anthracis BH460 provides an elegant tool to obtain high levels of lipopolysaccharide-free recombinant protein.

  8. Plant-Based Vaccine: Mice Immunized with Chloroplast-Derived Anthrax Protective Antigen Survive Anthrax Lethal Toxin Challenge

    OpenAIRE

    Koya, Vijay; Moayeri, Mahtab; Leppla, Stephen H.; Daniell, Henry

    2005-01-01

    The currently available human vaccine for anthrax, derived from the culture supernatant of Bacillus anthracis, contains the protective antigen (PA) and traces of the lethal and edema factors, which may contribute to adverse side effects associated with this vaccine. Therefore, an effective expression system that can provide a clean, safe, and efficacious vaccine is required. In an effort to produce anthrax vaccine in large quantities and free of extraneous bacterial contaminants, PA was expre...

  9. Allelic variation on murine chromosome 11 modifies host inflammatory responses and resistance to Bacillus anthracis.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jill K Terra

    2011-12-01

    Full Text Available Anthrax is a potentially fatal disease resulting from infection with Bacillus anthracis. The outcome of infection is influenced by pathogen-encoded virulence factors such as lethal toxin (LT, as well as by genetic variation within the host. To identify host genes controlling susceptibility to anthrax, a library of congenic mice consisting of strains with homozygous chromosomal segments from the LT-responsive CAST/Ei strain introgressed on a LT-resistant C57BL/6 (B6 background was screened for response to LT. Three congenic strains containing CAST/Ei regions of chromosome 11 were identified that displayed a rapid inflammatory response to LT similar to, but more severe than that driven by a LT-responsive allele of the inflammasome constituent NRLP1B. Importantly, increased response to LT in congenic mice correlated with greater resistance to infection by the Sterne strain of B. anthracis. The genomic region controlling the inflammatory response to LT was mapped to 66.36-74.67 Mb on chromosome 11, a region that encodes the LT-responsive CAST/Ei allele of Nlrp1b. However, known downstream effects of NLRP1B activation, including macrophage pyroptosis, cytokine release, and leukocyte infiltration could not fully explain the response to LT or the resistance to B. anthracis Sterne in congenic mice. Further, the exacerbated response in congenic mice is inherited in a recessive manner while the Nlrp1b-mediated response to LT is dominant. Finally, congenic mice displayed increased responsiveness in a model of sepsis compared with B6 mice. In total, these data suggest that allelic variation of one or more chromosome 11 genes in addition to Nlrp1b controls the severity of host response to multiple inflammatory stimuli and contributes to resistance to B. anthracis Sterne. Expression quantitative trait locus analysis revealed 25 genes within this region as high priority candidates for contributing to the host response to LT.

  10. Development of a comprehensive, validated pharmacophore hypothesis for anthrax toxin lethal factor (LF) inhibitors using genetic algorithms, Pareto scoring, and structural biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chiu, Ting-Lan; Amin, Elizabeth A

    2012-07-23

    Anthrax is an acute infectious disease caused by the spore-forming bacterium Bacillus anthracis. The anthrax toxin lethal factor (LF), an 89-kDa zinc hydrolase secreted by the bacilli, is the toxin component chiefly responsible for pathogenesis and has been a popular target for rational and structure-based drug design. Although hundreds of small-molecule compounds have been designed to target the LF active site, relatively few reported inhibitors have exhibited activity in cell-based assays, and no LF inhibitor is currently available to treat or prevent anthrax. This study presents a new pharmacophore map assembly, validated by experiment, designed to rapidly identify and prioritize promising LF inhibitor scaffolds from virtual compound libraries. The new hypothesis incorporates structural information from all five available LF enzyme-inhibitor complexes deposited in the Protein Data Bank (PDB) and is the first LF pharmacophore map reported to date that includes features representing interactions involving all three key subsites of the LF catalytic binding region. In a wide-ranging validation study on all 546 compounds for which published LF biological activity data exist, this model displayed strong selectivity toward nanomolar-level LF inhibitors, successfully identifying 72.1% of existing nanomolar-level compounds in an unbiased test set, while rejecting 100% of weakly active (>100 μM) compounds. In addition to its capabilities as a database searching tool, this comprehensive model points to a number of key design principles and previously unidentified ligand-receptor interactions that are likely to influence compound potency. PMID:22697455

  11. Anthrolysin O and fermentation products mediate the toxicity of Bacillus anthracis to lung epithelial cells under microaerobic conditions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Popova, Taissia G; Millis, Bryan; Chung, Myung-Chul; Bailey, Charles; Popov, Serguei G

    2011-02-01

    Bacillus anthracis generates virulence factors such as lethal and edema toxins, capsule, and hemolytic proteins under conditions of reduced oxygenation. Here, we report on the acute cytotoxicity of culture supernatants (Sups) of six nonencapsulated B. anthracis strains grown till the stationary phase under static microaerobic conditions. Human small airway epithelial, umbilical vein endothelial, Caco-2, and Hep-G2 cells were found to be susceptible. Sups displayed a reduction of pH to 5.3-5.5, indicating the onset of acid anaerobic fermentation; however, low pH itself was not a major factor of toxicity. The pore-forming hemolysin, anthrolysin O (ALO), contributed to the toxicity in a concentration-dependent manner. Its effect was found to be synergistic with a metabolic product of B. anthracis, succinic acid. Cells exposed to Sups demonstrated cytoplasmic membrane blebbing, increased permeability, loss of ATP, mitochondrial membrane potential collapse, and arrest of cell respiration. The toxicity was reduced by inhibition of ALO by cholesterol, decomposition of reactive oxygen species, and inhibition of mitochondrial succinate dehydrogenase. Cell death appears to be caused by an acute primary membrane permeabilization by ALO, followed by a burst of reactive radicals from the mitochondria fuelled by the succinate, which is generated by bacteria in the hypoxic environment. This mechanism of metabolic toxicity is relevant to the late-stage conditions of hypoxia and acidosis found in anthrax patients and might operate at anatomical locations of the host deprived from oxygen supply. PMID:20946354

  12. What sets Bacillus anthracis apart from other Bacillus species?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kolstø, Anne-Brit; Tourasse, Nicolas J; Økstad, Ole Andreas

    2009-01-01

    Bacillus anthracis is the cause of anthrax, and two large plasmids are essential for toxicity: pXO1, which contains the toxin genes, and pXO2, which encodes a capsule. B. anthracis forms a highly monomorphic lineage within the B. cereus group, but strains of Bacillus thuringiensis and B. cereus exist that are genetically closely related to the B. anthracis cluster. During the past five years B. cereus strains that contain the pXO1 virulence plasmid were discovered, and strains with both pXO1 and pXO2 have been isolated from great apes in Africa. Therefore, the presence of pXO1 and pXO2 no longer principally separates B. anthracis from other Bacilli. The B. anthracis lineage carries a specific mutation in the global regulator PlcR, which controls the transcription of secreted virulence factors in B. cereus and B. thuringiensis. Coevolution of the B. anthracis chromosome with its plasmids may be the basis for the successful development and uniqueness of the B. anthracis lineage. PMID:19514852

  13. Anthrax Lethal Toxin and the Induction of CD4 T Cell Immunity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Daniel M. Altmann

    2012-10-01

    Full Text Available Bacillus anthracis secretes exotoxins which act through several mechanisms including those that can subvert adaptive immunity with respect both to antigen presenting cell and T cell function. The combination of Protective Antigen (PA and Lethal Factor (LF forming Lethal Toxin (LT, acts within host cells to down-regulate the mitogen activated protein kinase (MAPK signaling cascade. Until recently the MAPK kinases were the only known substrate for LT; over the past few years it has become evident that LT also cleaves Nlrp1, leading to inflammasome activation and macrophage death. The predicted downstream consequences of subverting these important cellular pathways are impaired antigen presentation and adaptive immunity. In contrast to this, recent work has indicated that robust memory T cell responses to B. anthracis antigens can be identified following natural anthrax infection. We discuss how LT affects the adaptive immune response and specifically the identification of B. anthracis epitopes that are both immunogenic and protective with the potential for inclusion in protein sub-unit based vaccines.

  14. Factor V Leiden mutation does not affect coagulopathy or outcome in lethal H1N1 influenza.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schouten, M; van der Sluijs, K F; Roelofs, J J T H; Levi, M; Van't Veer, C; van der Poll, T

    2010-12-01

    Influenza A is a major cause of mortality. Knowledge on coagulation activation in influenza infection is limited. The factor V Leiden (FVL) mutation is possibly subject to positive selection pressure. It is unknown whether this mutation impacts on the outcome of severe influenza. In the present study, the effect of lethal influenza on pulmonary and systemic coagulation activation and whether or not FVL mutation alters coagulation activation in and the course of lethal influenza, was determined. Wild-type mice, and mice heterozygous or homozygous for FVL were infected intranasally with a lethal dose of H1N1 (haemagglutinin 1 and neuraminidase 1) influenza A. Mice were sacrificed after 48 or 96 h for determination of coagulation activation, histopathology, pulmonary inflammatory parameters and viral load, or were observed in a survival study. Extensive local and systemic coagulation activation during lethal influenza was demonstrated by increased lung and plasma levels of thrombin-antithrombin complexes and fibrin degradation products, and by pulmonary fibrin deposition. FVL mutation did not influence the procoagulant response, lung histopathology or survival. FVL mice demonstrated elevated viral loads 48 h after infection. In conclusion, coagulation is activated locally and systemically during lethal murine influenza A infection. The FVL mutation does not influence coagulation activation, lung inflammation or survival in lethal influenza A. PMID:20413539

  15. Insulin-Like Growth Factor 1 Mitigates Hematopoietic Toxicity After Lethal Total Body Irradiation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Zhou, Dunhua; Deoliveira, Divino; Kang, Yubin; Choi, Seung S. [Department of Medicine, Duke University Medical Center, Durham, North Carolina (United States); Li, Zhiguo [Department of Biostatistics and Bioinformatics, Duke University Medical Center, Durham, North Carolina (United States); Chao, Nelson J. [Department of Medicine, Duke University Medical Center, Durham, North Carolina (United States); Department of Pathology, Duke University Medical Center, Durham, North Carolina (United States); Department of Immunology, Duke University Medical Center, Durham, North Carolina (United States); Duke Cancer Institute, Duke University Medical Center, Durham, North Carolina (United States); Chen, Benny J., E-mail: chen0032@mc.duke.edu [Duke Cancer Institute, Duke University Medical Center, Durham, North Carolina (United States); Department of Medicine, Duke University Medical Center, Durham, North Carolina (United States)

    2013-03-15

    Purpose: To investigate whether and how insulin-like growth factor 1 (IGF-1) mitigates hematopoietic toxicity after total body irradiation. Methods and Materials: BALB/c mice were irradiated with a lethal dose of radiation (7.5 Gy) and treated with IGF-1 at a dose of 100 μg/dose intravenously once a day for 5 consecutive days starting within 1 hour after exposure. Survival and hematopoietic recovery were monitored. The mechanisms by which IGF-1 promotes hematopoietic recovery were also studied by use of an in vitro culture system. Results: IGF-1 protected 8 of 20 mice (40%) from lethal irradiation, whereas only 2 of 20 mice (10%) in the saline control group survived for more than 100 days after irradiation. A single dose of IGF-1 (500 μg) was as effective as daily dosing for 5 days. Positive effects were noted even when the initiation of treatment was delayed as long as 6 hours after irradiation. In comparison with the saline control group, treatment with IGF-1 significantly accelerated the recovery of both platelets and red blood cells in peripheral blood, total cell numbers, hematopoietic stem cells, and progenitor cells in the bone marrow when measured at day 14 after irradiation. IGF-1 protected both hematopoietic stem cells and progenitor cells from radiation-induced apoptosis and cell death. In addition, IGF-1 was able to facilitate the proliferation and differentiation of nonirradiated and irradiated hematopoietic progenitor cells. Conclusions: IGF-1 mitigates radiation-induced hematopoietic toxicity through protecting hematopoietic stem cells and progenitor cells from apoptosis and enhancing proliferation and differentiation of the surviving hematopoietic progenitor cells.

  16. Lethal exposure: An integrated approach to pathogen transmission via environmental reservoirs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Turner, Wendy C; Kausrud, Kyrre L; Beyer, Wolfgang; Easterday, W Ryan; Barandongo, Zoë R; Blaschke, Elisabeth; Cloete, Claudine C; Lazak, Judith; Van Ert, Matthew N; Ganz, Holly H; Turnbull, Peter C B; Stenseth, Nils Chr; Getz, Wayne M

    2016-01-01

    To mitigate the effects of zoonotic diseases on human and animal populations, it is critical to understand what factors alter transmission dynamics. Here we assess the risk of exposure to lethal concentrations of the anthrax bacterium, Bacillus anthracis, for grazing animals in a natural system over time through different transmission mechanisms. We follow pathogen concentrations at anthrax carcass sites and waterholes for five years and estimate infection risk as a function of grass, soil or water intake, age of carcass sites, and the exposure required for a lethal infection. Grazing, not drinking, seems the dominant transmission route, and transmission is more probable from grazing at carcass sites 1-2 years of age. Unlike most studies of virulent pathogens that are conducted under controlled conditions for extrapolation to real situations, we evaluate exposure risk under field conditions to estimate the probability of a lethal dose, showing that not all reservoirs with detectable pathogens are significant transmission pathways. PMID:27265371

  17. Production and purification of Bacillus anthracis protective antigen from Escherichia coli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Laird, Michael W; Zukauskas, David; Johnson, Kelly; Sampey, Gavin C; Olsen, Henrik; Garcia, Andy; Karwoski, Jeffrey D; Cooksey, Bridget A; Choi, Gil H; Askins, Janine; Tsai, Amos; Pierre, Jennifer; Gwinn, William

    2004-11-01

    Anthrax is caused by the gram-positive, spore-forming bacterium, Bacillus anthracis. The anthrax toxin consists of three proteins, protective antigen (PA), lethal factor, and edema factor. Current vaccines against anthrax use PA as their primary component since it confers protective immunity. In this work, we expressed soluble, recombinant PA in relatively high amounts in the periplasm of E. coli from shake flasks and bioreactors. The PA protein was purified using Q-Sepharose-HP and hydroxyapatite chromatography, and routinely found to be 96-98% pure. Yields of purified PA varied depending on the method of production; however, medium cell density fermentations resulted in approximately 370 mg/L of highly pure biologically active PA protein. These results exhibit the ability to generate gram quantities of PA from E. coli. PMID:15477093

  18. Scalable purification of Bacillus anthracis protective antigen from Escherichia coli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gwinn, William; Zhang, Mei; Mon, Sandii; Sampey, Darryl; Zukauskas, David; Kassebaum, Corby; Zmuda, Jonathan F; Tsai, Amos; Laird, Michael W

    2006-01-01

    The anthrax toxin consists of three proteins, protective antigen (PA), lethal factor, and edema factor that are produced by the Gram-positive bacterium, Bacillus anthracis. Current vaccines against anthrax use PA as their primary component. In this study, we developed a scalable process to produce and purify multi-gram quantities of highly pure, recombinant PA (rPA) from Escherichia coli. The rPA protein was produced in a 50-L fermentor and purified to >99% purity using anion-exchange, hydrophobic interaction, and hydroxyapatite chromatography. The final yield of purified rPA from medium cell density fermentations resulted in approximately 2.7 g of rPA per kg of cell paste (approximately 270 mg/L) of highly pure, biologically active rPA protein. The results presented here exhibit the ability to generate multi-gram quantities of rPA from E. coli that may be used for the development of new anthrax vaccines and anthrax therapeutics. PMID:15935696

  19. Implications of Limits of Detection of Various Methods for Bacillus anthracis in Computing Risks to Human Health▿ †

    OpenAIRE

    Herzog, Amanda B.; McLennan, S. Devin; Pandey, Alok K.; Gerba, Charles P.; Haas, Charles N.; Joan B. Rose; Hashsham, Syed A.

    2009-01-01

    Used for decades for biological warfare, Bacillus anthracis (category A agent) has proven to be highly stable and lethal. Quantitative risk assessment modeling requires descriptive statistics of the limit of detection to assist in defining the exposure. Furthermore, the sensitivities of various detection methods in environmental matrices are vital information for first responders. A literature review of peer-reviewed journal articles related to methods for detection of B. anthracis was undert...

  20. The Pathogenomic Sequence Analysis of B. cereus and B. Thuringiensis isolates closely related to Bacillus anthracis

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Han, C S; Xie, G; Challacombe, J F; Altherr, M R; Bhotika, S S; Bruce, D; Campbell, C S; Campbell, M L; Chen, J; Chertkov, O; Cleland, C; Dimitrijevic-Bussod, M; Doggett, N A; Fawcett, J J; Glavina, T; Goodwin, L A; Hill, K K; Hitchcock, P; Jackson, P J; Keim, P; Kewalramani, A R; Longmire, J; Lucas, S; Malfatti, S; McMurry, K; Meincke, L J; Misra, M; Moseman, B L; Mundt, M; Munk, A C; Okinaka, R T; Parson-Quintana, B; Reilly, L P; Richardson, P; Robinson, D L; Rubin, E; Saunders, E; Tapia, R; Tesmer, J G; Thayer, N; Thompson, L S; Tice, H; Ticknor, L O; Wills, P L; Gilna, P; Brettin, T S

    2005-10-12

    The sequencing and analysis of two close relatives of Bacillus anthracis are reported. AFLP analysis of over 300 isolates of B. cereus, B. thuringiensis and B. anthracis identified two isolates as being very closely related to B. anthracis. One, a B. cereus, BcE33L, was isolated from a zebra carcass in Nambia; the second, a B. thuringiensis, 97-27, was isolated from a necrotic human wound. The B. cereus appears to be the closest anthracis relative sequenced to date. A core genome of over 3,900 genes was compiled for the Bacillus cereus group, including B anthracis. Comparative analysis of these two genomes with other members of the B. cereus group provides insight into the evolutionary relationships among these organisms. Evidence is presented that differential regulation modulates virulence, rather than simple acquisition of virulence factors. These genome sequences provide insight into the molecular mechanisms contributing to the host range and virulence of this group of organisms.

  1. Insights into the anthrax lethal factor–substrate interaction and selectivity using docking and molecular dynamics simulations

    OpenAIRE

    Dalkas, Georgios A; Papakyriakou, Athanasios; Vlamis-Gardikas, Alexios; Spyroulias, Georgios A

    2009-01-01

    The anthrax toxin of the bacterium Bacillus anthracis consists of three distinct proteins, one of which is the anthrax lethal factor (LF). LF is a gluzincin Zn-dependent, highly specific metalloprotease with a molecular mass of ∼90 kDa that cleaves most isoforms of the family of mitogen-activated protein kinase kinases (MEKs/MKKs) close to their amino termini, resulting in the inhibition of one or more signaling pathways. Previous studies on the crystal structures of uncomplexed LF and LF com...

  2. Rapid detection methods for Bacillus anthracis in environmental samples: a review.

    OpenAIRE

    Irenge, Léonid; Gala, Jean-Luc

    2012-01-01

    Bacillus anthracis is a Gram-positive, spore-forming bacterium, which causes anthrax, an often lethal disease of animals and humans. Although the disease has been well studied since the nineteenth century, it has witnessed a renewed interest during the past decade, due to its use as a bioterrorist agent in the fall of 2001 in the USA. A number of techniques aimed at rapidly detecting B. anthracis, in environmental samples as well as in point-of-care settings for humans suspected of exposure t...

  3. Caffeine potentiates the lethality of tumour necrosis factor in cancer cells.

    OpenAIRE

    Belizario, J. E.; Tilly, J L; Sherwood, S W

    1993-01-01

    In this study we have investigated the interaction of caffeine, a prototypic methylxanthine, and TNF on the induction of cell death in mouse and human cell lines during progression from G1 to successive phases of the cell cycle. Exposure of cells to TNF (0.1-100 ng ml-1) as single agent for 48 h caused low or no lethality. The rates of cell death increased significantly when cells cultured with TNF for 24 h were exposed to caffeine (2.5-20 mM). The magnitude of the enhancement by caffeine was...

  4. Lethal Factor and Anti-Protective Antigen IgG Levels Associated with Inhalation Anthrax, Minnesota, USA

    OpenAIRE

    Sprenkle, Mark D.; Griffith, Jayne; Marinelli, William; Boyer, Anne E.; Quinn, Conrad P.; Pesik, Nicki T.; Hoffmaster, Alex; Keenan, Joseph; Billie A. Juni; Blaney, David D.

    2014-01-01

    Bacillus anthracis was identified in a 61-year-old man hospitalized in Minnesota, USA. Cooperation between the hospital and the state health agency enhanced prompt identification of the pathogen. Treatment comprising antimicrobial drugs, anthrax immune globulin, and pleural drainage led to full recovery; however, the role of passive immunization in anthrax treatment requires further evaluation.

  5. Lethal, potentially lethal lesion model

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Curtis, S.B.

    1983-07-01

    A theoretical framework to describe the formation of lethal mutations by radiation is presented. Lesions that are repaired (and misrepaired) in each type of experiment described (delayed plating and split dose) are assumed to be the same. In this model the same (potentially lethal) lesions cause both sublethal and potentially lethal damage. Potentially lethal damage is defined as damage which may be modified by alterations in postirradiation conditions. Sublethal damage is cellular damage whose accumulation may lead to lethality. A crucial consideration in the expression of the damage is the kind of medium in which the cells are placed during the repair period. Fresh or growth medium (F-medium) is assumed to cause fixation of damage after about 3 hours, while no fixation (only misrepair) occurs in conditioned medium (C-medium).

  6. Factors influencing recovery from potentially lethal radiation damage in A549 human lung carcinoma cells

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Plateau phase A549 cells exhibit potentially lethal radiation damage recovery (PLDR) that is dependent upon both the pH and the glucose content of the spent medium. At 9-10 days after plating, unfed A549 plateau cultures are acidic (pH 6.5 - 6.7), contain 2 to 4 mM glucose, and exhibit an approximately 40-fold increase in survival when held for 6 hrs in spent medium vs being subcultured immediately after 10 Gy aerobic irradiation. PLDR is maximal 24 hrs. post-irradiation. Adjustment of the pH of the spent medium to 7.5, by NaOH addition, either prior to or immediately post irradiation, nearly completely inhibits PLDR in this cell line. The authors found that medium acidity inhibits glucose utilization, and that alkalinization of spent medium, to pH 7.5, results in stimulation of glucose consumption. Plateau phase cultures depleted of glucose, as a result of medium alkalinization, are not capable of PLDR. In addition to pH effects, they observed that several agents, including nicotinamide, 3-aminobenzamide, caffeine, 2-deoxyglucose and glucosamine, partially inhibit PLDR in A549 plateau phase cultures

  7. Rapid detection methods for Bacillus anthracis in environmental samples: a review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Irenge, Léonid M; Gala, Jean-Luc

    2012-02-01

    Bacillus anthracis is a Gram-positive, spore-forming bacterium, which causes anthrax, an often lethal disease of animals and humans. Although the disease has been well studied since the nineteenth century, it has witnessed a renewed interest during the past decade, due to its use as a bioterrorist agent in the fall of 2001 in the USA. A number of techniques aimed at rapidly detecting B. anthracis, in environmental samples as well as in point-of-care settings for humans suspected of exposure to the pathogen, are now available. These technologies range from culture-based methods to portable DNA amplification devices. Despite recent developments, specific identification of B. anthracis still remains difficult because of its phenotypic and genotypic similarities with other Bacillus species. Accordingly, many efforts are being made to improve the specificity of B. anthracis identification. This mini-review discusses the current challenges around B. anthracis identification, not only in reach-back laboratories but also in the field (in operational conditions). PMID:22262227

  8. Species origin of genomic factors in Nicotiana nudicaulis Watson controlling hybrid lethality in interspecific hybrids between N. nudicaulis Watson and N. tabacum L.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hongshuo Liu

    Full Text Available Hybrid lethality is expressed at 28°C in the cross Nicotiana nudicaulis × N. tabacum. The S subgenome of N. tabacum has been identified as controlling this hybrid lethality. To clarify the responsible genomic factor(s of N. nudicaulis, we crossed N. trigonophylla (paternal progenitor of N. nudicaulis with N. tabacum, because hybrids between N. sylvestris (maternal progenitor of N. nudicaulis and N. tabacum are viable when grown in a greenhouse. In the cross N. trigonophylla×N. tabacum, approximately 50% of hybrids were vitrified, 20% were viable, and 20% were nonviable at 28°C. To reveal which subgenome of N. tabacum was responsible for these phenotypes, we crossed N. trigonophylla with two progenitors of N. tabacum, N. sylvestris (SS and N. tomentosiformis (TT. In the cross N. sylvestris × N. trigonophylla, we confirmed that over half of hybrids of N. sylvestris × N. trigonophylla were vitrified, and none of the hybrids of N. trigonophylla × N. tomentosiformis were. The results imply that the S subgenome, encoding a gene or genes inducing hybrid lethality in the cross between N. nudicaulis and N. tabacum, has one or more genomic factors that induce vitrification. Furthermore, in vitrified hybrids of N. trigonophylla × N. tabacum and N. sylvestris × N. trigonophylla, we found that nuclear fragmentation, which progresses during expression of hybrid lethality, was accompanied by vitrification. This observation suggests that vitrification has a relationship to hybrid lethality. Based on these results, we speculate that when N. nudicaulis was formed approximately 5 million years ago, several causative genomic factors determining phenotypes of hybrid seedlings were inherited from N. trigonophylla. Subsequently, genome downsizing and various recombination-based processes took place. Some of the causative genomic factors were lost and some became genomic factor(s controlling hybrid lethality in extant N. nudicaulis.

  9. Inflammatory Cytokine Response to Bacillus anthracis Peptidoglycan Requires Phagocytosis and Lysosomal Trafficking▿

    OpenAIRE

    Iyer, Janaki K.; Khurana, Taruna; Langer, Marybeth; West, Christopher M.; Ballard, Jimmy D.; Metcalf, Jordan P.; Merkel, Tod J.; Coggeshall, K. Mark

    2010-01-01

    During advanced stages of inhalation anthrax, Bacillus anthracis accumulates at high levels in the bloodstream of the infected host. This bacteremia leads to sepsis during late-stage anthrax; however, the mechanisms through which B. anthracis-derived factors contribute to the pathology of infected hosts are poorly defined. Peptidoglycan, a major component of the cell wall of Gram-positive bacteria, can provoke symptoms of sepsis in animal models. We have previously shown that peptidoglycan of...

  10. Defensive strategies of Bacillus anthracis that promote a fatal disease

    OpenAIRE

    Mogridge, Jeremy

    2007-01-01

    Bacillus anthracis is a Gram-positive bacterium that causes anthrax. Bacterial spores that enter the host germinate into metabolically active bacilli that disseminate throughout the body and replicate to high numbers. Two virulence factors are essential for this unrestrained growth. The first is a weakly immunogenic poly γ-D-glutamic acid capsule that surrounds the bacilli and confers resistance to phagocytosis. The second virulence factor, anthrax toxin, disrupts multiple host functions to d...

  11. Development of an Inhalational Bacillus anthracis Exposure Therapeutic Model in Cynomolgus Macaques

    OpenAIRE

    Henning, Lisa N.; Comer, Jason E.; Stark, Gregory V.; Ray, Bryan D.; Tordoff, Kevin P.; Knostman, Katherine A. B.; Meister, Gabriel T.

    2012-01-01

    Appropriate animal models are required to test medical countermeasures to bioterrorist threats. To that end, we characterized a nonhuman primate (NHP) inhalational anthrax therapeutic model for use in testing anthrax therapeutic medical countermeasures according to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration Animal Rule. A clinical profile was recorded for each NHP exposed to a lethal dose of Bacillus anthracis Ames spores. Specific diagnostic parameters were detected relatively early in disease pr...

  12. The role of anthrolysin O in gut epithelial barrier disruption during Bacillus anthracis infection

    OpenAIRE

    Bishop, Brian L.; Lodolce, James P.; Kolodziej, Lauren; Boone, David L.; Tang, Wei Jen

    2010-01-01

    Gastrointestinal (GI) anthrax, caused by the bacterial infection of Bacillus anthracis, posts a significant bioterrorism threat by its relatively high mortality rate in humans. Different from inhalational anthrax by the route of infection, accumulating evidence indicates the bypass of vegetative bacteria across GI epithelium is required to initiate GI anthrax. Previously, we reported that purified anthrolysin O (ALO), instead of tripartite anthrax edema and lethal toxins, is capable of disrup...

  13. Synthetic Lethality Screen Identifies RPS6KA2 as Modifier of Epidermal Growth Factor Receptor Activity in Pancreatic Cancer

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nada Milosevic

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available Pancreatic cancer is characterized by a high degree of resistance to chemotherapy. Epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR inhibition using the small-molecule inhibitor erlotinib was shown to provide a small survival benefit in a subgroup of patients. To identify kinases whose inhibition acts synergistically with erlotinib, we employed a kinome-wide small-interfering RNA (siRNA-based loss-of-function screen in the presence of erlotinib. Of 779 tested kinases, we identified several targets whose inhibition acted synergistically lethal with EGFR inhibition by erlotinib, among them the S6 kinase ribosomal protein S6 kinase 2 (RPS6KA2/ribosomal S6 kinase 3. Activated RPS6KA2 was expressed in approximately 40% of 123 human pancreatic cancer tissues. RPS6KA2 was shown to act downstream of EGFR/RAS/mitogen-activated protein kinase kinase (MEK/extracellular-signal regulated kinase (ERK signaling and was activated by EGF independently of the presence of KRAS mutations. Knockdown of RPS6KA2 by siRNA led to increased apoptosis only in the presence of erlotinib, whereas RPS6KA2 activation or overexpression rescued from erlotinib- and gemcitabine-induced apoptosis. This effect was at least in part mediated by downstream activation of ribosomal protein S6. Genetic as well as pharmacological inhibition of RPS6KA2 by the inhibitor BI-D1870 acted synergistically with erlotinib. By applying this synergistic lethality screen using a kinome-wide RNA interference-library approach, we identified RPS6KA2 as potential drug target whose inhibition synergistically enhanced the effect of erlotinib on tumor cell survival. This kinase therefore represents a promising drug candidate suitable for the development of novel inhibitors for pancreatic cancer therapy.

  14. Mechanical transmission of Bacillus anthracis by stable flies (Stomoxys calcitrans) and mosquitoes (Aedes aegypti and Aedes taeniorhynchus).

    OpenAIRE

    Turell, M J; Knudson, G B

    1987-01-01

    We evaluated the potential of stable flies, Stomoxys calcitrans, and two species of mosquitoes, Aedes aegypti and Aedes taeniorhynchus, to transmit Bacillus anthracis Vollum 1B mechanically. After probing on Hartley guinea pigs with a bacteremia of ca. 10(8.6) CFU of B. anthracis per ml of blood, individual or pools of two to four stable flies or mosquitoes were allowed to continue feeding on either uninfected guinea pigs or A/J mice. All three insect species transmitted lethal anthrax infect...

  15. Absence of tumor necrosis factor rescues RelA-deficient mice from embryonic lethality

    OpenAIRE

    Doi, Takahiro S.; Marino, Michael W.; Takahashi, Toshitada; Yoshida, Toshimichi; Sakakura, Teruyo; Old, Lloyd J.; Obata, Yuichi

    1999-01-01

    Mice lacking the RelA (p65) subunit of NF-κB die between days 14 and 15 of embryogenesis because of massive liver destruction. Fibroblasts and macrophages isolated from relA−/− embryos were found to be highly sensitive to tumor necrosis factor (TNF) cytotoxicity, raising the possibility that endogenous TNF is the cause of liver cell apoptosis. To test this idea, we generated mice lacking both TNF and RelA. Embryogenesis proceeds normally in such mice, and TNF/RelA double-deficient mice are vi...

  16. Quantitative immunofluorescence studies of the serology of Bacillus anthracis spores.

    OpenAIRE

    Phillips, A. P.; Martin, K L

    1983-01-01

    A fluorescein-conjugated antibody against formalin-inactivated spores of Bacillus anthracis Vollum reacted only weakly with a variety of Bacillus species in microfluorometric immunofluorescence assays. A conjugated antibody against spores of B. anthracis Sterne showed little affinity for spores of several B. anthracis isolates including B. anthracis Vollum, indicating that more than one anthrax spore serotype exists.

  17. Inflammatory cytokine response to Bacillus anthracis peptidoglycan requires phagocytosis and lysosomal trafficking.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Iyer, Janaki K; Khurana, Taruna; Langer, Marybeth; West, Christopher M; Ballard, Jimmy D; Metcalf, Jordan P; Merkel, Tod J; Coggeshall, K Mark

    2010-06-01

    During advanced stages of inhalation anthrax, Bacillus anthracis accumulates at high levels in the bloodstream of the infected host. This bacteremia leads to sepsis during late-stage anthrax; however, the mechanisms through which B. anthracis-derived factors contribute to the pathology of infected hosts are poorly defined. Peptidoglycan, a major component of the cell wall of Gram-positive bacteria, can provoke symptoms of sepsis in animal models. We have previously shown that peptidoglycan of B. anthracis can induce the production of proinflammatory cytokines by cells in human blood. Here, we show that biologically active peptidoglycan is shed from an active culture of encapsulated B. anthracis strain Ames in blood. Peptidoglycan is able to bind to surfaces of responding cells, and internalization of peptidoglycan is required for the production of inflammatory cytokines. We also show that the peptidoglycan traffics to lysosomes, and lysosomal function is required for cytokine production. We conclude that peptidoglycan of B. anthracis is initially bound by an unknown extracellular receptor, is phagocytosed, and traffics to lysosomes, where it is degraded to a product recognized by an intracellular receptor. Binding of the peptidoglycan product to the intracellular receptor causes a proinflammatory response. These findings provide new insight into the mechanism by which B. anthracis triggers sepsis during a critical stage of anthrax disease. PMID:20308305

  18. NMR conformational properties of an Anthrax Lethal Factor domain studied by multiple amino acid-selective labeling

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Vourtsis, Dionysios J.; Chasapis, Christos T.; Pairas, George [Department of Pharmacy, University of Patras, GR-26504 Patras (Greece); Bentrop, Detlef [Institute of Physiology II, University of Freiburg, D-79104 Freiburg (Germany); Spyroulias, Georgios A., E-mail: G.A.Spyroulias@upatras.gr [Department of Pharmacy, University of Patras, GR-26504 Patras (Greece)

    2014-07-18

    Highlights: • A polypeptide, N-ALF{sub 233}, was overexpressed in E. coli and successfully isolated. • We produced {sup 2}H/{sup 15}N/{sup 13}C labeled protein samples. • Amino acid selective approaches were applied. • We acquired several heteronuclear NMR spectra, to complete the backbone assignment. • Prediction of the secondary structure was performed. - Abstract: NMR-based structural biology urgently needs cost- and time-effective methods to assist both in the process of acquiring high-resolution NMR spectra and their subsequent analysis. Especially for bigger proteins (>20 kDa) selective labeling is a frequently used means of sequence-specific assignment. In this work we present the successful overexpression of a polypeptide of 233 residues, corresponding to the structured part of the N-terminal domain of Anthrax Lethal Factor, using Escherichia coli expression system. The polypeptide was subsequently isolated in pure, soluble form and analyzed structurally by solution NMR spectroscopy. Due to the non-satisfying quality and resolution of the spectra of this 27 kDa protein, an almost complete backbone assignment became feasible only by the combination of uniform and novel amino acid-selective labeling schemes. Moreover, amino acid-type selective triple-resonance NMR experiments proved to be very helpful.

  19. Bacillus anthracis capsule activates caspase-1 and induces interleukin-1beta release from differentiated THP-1 and human monocyte-derived dendritic cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cho, Min-Hee; Ahn, Hae-Jeong; Ha, Hyun-Joon; Park, Jungchan; Chun, Jeong-Hoon; Kim, Bong-Su; Oh, Hee-Bok; Rhie, Gi-Eun

    2010-01-01

    The poly-gamma-d-glutamic acid (PGA) capsule is one of the major virulence factors of Bacillus anthracis, which causes a highly lethal infection. The antiphagocytic PGA capsule disguises the bacilli from immune surveillance and allows unimpeded growth of bacilli in the host. Recently, efforts have been made to include PGA as a component of anthrax vaccine; however, the innate immune response of PGA itself has been poorly investigated. In this study, we characterized the innate immune response elicited by PGA in the human monocytic cell line THP-1, which was differentiated into macrophages with phorbol 12-myristate 13-acetate (PMA) and human monocyte-derived dendritic cells (hMoDCs). PGA capsules were isolated from the culture supernatant of either the pXO1-cured strain of B. anthracis H9401 or B. licheniformis ATCC 9945a. PGA treatment of differentiated THP-1 cells and hMoDCs led to the specific extracellular release of interleukin-1beta (IL-1beta) in a dose-dependent manner. Evaluation of IL-1beta processing by Western blotting revealed that cleaved IL-1beta increased in THP-1 cells and hMoDCs after PGA treatment. Enhanced processing of IL-1beta directly correlated with increased activation of its upstream regulator, caspase-1, also known as IL-1beta-converting enzyme (ICE). The extracellular release of IL-1beta in response to PGA was ICE dependent, since the administration of an ICE inhibitor prior to PGA treatment blocked induction of IL-1beta. These results demonstrate that B. anthracis PGA elicits IL-1beta production through activation of ICE in PMA-differentiated THP-1 cells and hMoDCs, suggesting the potential for PGA as a therapeutic target for anthrax. PMID:19737897

  20. Revisiting the Concept of Targeting Only Bacillus anthracis Toxins as a Treatment for Anthrax.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Glinert, Itai; Bar-David, Elad; Sittner, Assa; Weiss, Shay; Schlomovitz, Josef; Ben-Shmuel, Amir; Mechaly, Adva; Altboum, Zeev; Kobiler, David; Levy, Haim

    2016-08-01

    Protective antigen (PA)-based vaccines are effective in preventing the development of fatal anthrax disease both in humans and in relevant animal models. The Bacillus anthracis toxins lethal toxin (lethal factor [LF] plus PA) and edema toxin (edema factor [EF] plus PA) are essential for the establishment of the infection, as inactivation of these toxins results in attenuation of the pathogen. Since the toxins reach high toxemia levels at the bacteremic stages of the disease, the CDC's recommendations include combining antibiotic treatment with antitoxin (anti-PA) immunotherapy. We demonstrate here that while treatment with a highly potent neutralizing monoclonal antibody was highly efficient as postexposure prophylaxis treatment, it failed to protect rabbits with any detectable bacteremia (≥10 CFU/ml). In addition, we show that while PA vaccination was effective against a subcutaneous spore challenge, it failed to protect rabbits against systemic challenges (intravenous injection of vegetative bacteria) with the wild-type Vollum strain or a toxin-deficient mutant. To test the possibility that additional proteins, which are secreted by the bacteria under pathogenicity-stimulating conditions in vitro, may contribute to the vaccine's potency, we immunized rabbits with a secreted protein fraction from a toxin-null mutant. The antiserum raised against the secreted fraction reacts with the bacteria in an immunofluorescence assay. Immunization with the secreted protein fraction did not protect the rabbits against a systemic challenge with the fully pathogenic bacteria. Full protection was obtained only by a combined vaccination with PA and the secreted protein fraction. Therefore, these results indicate that an effective antiserum treatment in advanced stages of anthrax must include toxin-neutralizing antibodies in combination with antibodies against bacterial cell targets. PMID:27270276

  1. Anthrax lethal toxin disrupts intestinal barrier function and causes systemic infections with enteric bacteria.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chen Sun

    Full Text Available A variety of intestinal pathogens have virulence factors that target mitogen activated protein kinase (MAPK signaling pathways, including Bacillus anthracis. Anthrax lethal toxin (LT has specific proteolytic activity against the upstream regulators of MAPKs, the MAPK kinases (MKKs. Using a murine model of intoxication, we show that LT causes the dose-dependent disruption of intestinal epithelial integrity, characterized by mucosal erosion, ulceration, and bleeding. This pathology correlates with an LT-dependent blockade of intestinal crypt cell proliferation, accompanied by marked apoptosis in the villus tips. C57BL/6J mice treated with intravenous LT nearly uniformly develop systemic infections with commensal enteric organisms within 72 hours of administration. LT-dependent intestinal pathology depends upon its proteolytic activity and is partially attenuated by co-administration of broad spectrum antibiotics, indicating that it is both a cause and an effect of infection. These findings indicate that targeting of MAPK signaling pathways by anthrax LT compromises the structural integrity of the mucosal layer, serving to undermine the effectiveness of the intestinal barrier. Combined with the well-described immunosuppressive effects of LT, this disruption of the intestinal barrier provides a potential mechanism for host invasion via the enteric route, a common portal of entry during the natural infection cycle of Bacillus anthracis.

  2. Sublethal doses of anthrax lethal toxin on the suppression of macrophage phagocytosis.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jyh-Hwa Kau

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Lethal toxin (LT, the major virulence factor produced by Bacillus anthracis, has been shown to suppress the immune system, which is beneficial to the establishment of B. anthracis infections. It has been suggested that the suppression of MEK/MAPK signaling pathways of leukocytes contributes to LT-mediated immunosuppressive effects. However, the involvement of MAPK independent pathways has not been clearly elucidated; nor has the crucial role played by LT in the early stages of infection. Determining whether LT exerts any pathological effects before being enriched to an MEK inhibitory level is an important next step in the furtherance of this field. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Using a cell culture model, we determined that low doses of LT inhibited phagocytosis of macrophages, without influencing MAPK pathways. Consistent low doses of LT significantly suppressed bacterial clearance and enhanced the mortality of mice with bacteremia, without suppressing the MEK1 of splenic and peripheral blood mononuclear cells. CONCLUSION/SIGNIFICANCE: These results suggest that LT suppresses the phagocytes in a dose range lower than that required to suppress MEK1 in the early stages of infection.

  3. Inactivation of Bacillus anthracis by Gamma irradiation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    N. Natalia

    2013-09-01

    Full Text Available The use of Bacillus anthracis as a biological weapon heighlightened awareness of the need for validated methods for the inactivation of B. anthracis spores. Ionizing radiation is capable of causing a variety of chemical changes and biological effects on bacteria which can be due both to direct interactions with critical cell components and to indirect actions on bacteria by molecular entities formed as a result of radiolysis of other molecules in the bacterial cell. This study determined the gamma irradiation dose for inactivating B. anthracis spores and its biological effects on the bacterial characteristics. Gamma irradiation was conducted at the IRKA irradiator at the National Nuclear Energy Agency, Jakarta and cobalt-60 was used as the source of ionizing radiation (capacity of ca. 134,044 Kci. Freeze dried culture of B. anthracis in glass ampoules was irradiated using variable doses of 30, 20 and 10 KGy. Viability, biochemical and protease enzyme characteristics of B. anthracis were evaluated before and after irradiation. The ability of B. anthracis to degrade gelatin, haemoglobin and bovine immunoglobulin G was also tested. The results showed that ionizing radiation was able to inactivate or kill 11,05 x 108 cfu B. anthracis by 95.37%, 99.58% and 99.99 at respective doses of 10, 20 and 30 KGy. Bacterial spores appear to be less susceptible to irradiation than the vegetative cells, because of their specific structure. The survive spores irradiated at 30kGy shows some biochemical characteristic changes. The survivors failed to degrade methyl -D-glucopyranoside and arbutine. The ability of B. anthracis protease to degrade gelatin, haemoglobin and bovine immunoglobulin G was not affected by irradiation. These findings showed that a gamma irradiation at 30 KGy effectively inactivates B. anthracis spores without changing the protease activities.

  4. Soluble Expression and Characterization of Biologically Active Bacillus anthracis Protective Antigen in Escherichia coli

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nagendra Suryanarayana

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Bacillus anthracis secretory protein protective antigen (PA is primary candidate for subunit vaccine against anthrax. Attempts to obtain large quantity of PA from Escherichia coli expression system often result in the formation of insoluble inclusion bodies. Therefore, it is always better to produce recombinant proteins in a soluble form. In the present study, we have obtained biologically active recombinant PA in small scale E. coli shake culture system using three different expression constructs. The PA gene was cloned in expression vectors bearing trc, T5, and T7 promoters and transformed into their respective E. coli hosts. The growth conditions were optimized to obtain maximum expression of PA in soluble form. The expression construct PA-pET32c in DE3-pLysS E. coli host resulted in a maximum production of soluble PA (15 mg L−1 compared to other combinations. Purified PA was subjected to trypsin digestion and binding assay with lethal factor to confirm the protein’s functionality. Biological activity was confirmed by cytotoxicity assay on J774.1 cells. Balb/c mice were immunized with PA and the immunogenicity was tested by ELISA and toxin neutralization assay. This study highlights the expression of soluble and biologically active recombinant PA in larger quantity using simpler E. coli production platform.

  5. Soluble Expression and Characterization of Biologically Active Bacillus anthracis Protective Antigen in Escherichia coli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Suryanarayana, Nagendra; Vanlalhmuaka; Mankere, Bharti; Verma, Monika; Thavachelvam, Kulanthaivel; Tuteja, Urmil

    2016-01-01

    Bacillus anthracis secretory protein protective antigen (PA) is primary candidate for subunit vaccine against anthrax. Attempts to obtain large quantity of PA from Escherichia coli expression system often result in the formation of insoluble inclusion bodies. Therefore, it is always better to produce recombinant proteins in a soluble form. In the present study, we have obtained biologically active recombinant PA in small scale E. coli shake culture system using three different expression constructs. The PA gene was cloned in expression vectors bearing trc, T5, and T7 promoters and transformed into their respective E. coli hosts. The growth conditions were optimized to obtain maximum expression of PA in soluble form. The expression construct PA-pET32c in DE3-pLysS E. coli host resulted in a maximum production of soluble PA (15 mg L(-1)) compared to other combinations. Purified PA was subjected to trypsin digestion and binding assay with lethal factor to confirm the protein's functionality. Biological activity was confirmed by cytotoxicity assay on J774.1 cells. Balb/c mice were immunized with PA and the immunogenicity was tested by ELISA and toxin neutralization assay. This study highlights the expression of soluble and biologically active recombinant PA in larger quantity using simpler E. coli production platform. PMID:26966576

  6. Influence of body weight on response of Fischer 344 rats to anthrax lethal toxin.

    OpenAIRE

    Ivins, B E; Ristroph, J D; Nelson, G O

    1989-01-01

    Groups of Fischer 344 rats were injected intravenously with Bacillus anthracis culture supernatant containing crude anthrax toxin. Times to death of rats given identical toxin preparations varied directly with the weights of the rats (P = 0.0001). In contrast to previous reports, the data indicate that rat weight must be taken into account during in vivo assays of anthrax lethal toxin activity.

  7. Anthrax edema toxin differentially regulates lipopolysaccharide-induced monocyte production of tumor necrosis factor alpha and interleukin-6 by increasing intracellular cyclic AMP.

    OpenAIRE

    Hoover, D L; Friedlander, A M; Rogers, L.C.; Yoon, I. K.; Warren, R L; Cross, A S

    1994-01-01

    Bacillus anthracis exotoxins mediate most of the symptomatology of severe anthrax. In addition to a clinical syndrome reminiscent of septic shock, which may be mediated by cytokines produced by macrophages stimulated with lethal toxin, infected patients show profound edema at sites of infection. Edema is mediated by edema toxin (ET), which comprises of a binding molecule, protective antigen, and an active moiety, edema factor, which possesses intrinsic adenylyl cyclase activity. Intracellular...

  8. Development of antibodies to protective antigen and lethal factor components of anthrax toxin in humans and guinea pigs and their relevance to protective immunity.

    OpenAIRE

    Turnbull, P. C.; Broster, M G; Carman, J A; Manchee, R J; Melling, J

    1986-01-01

    A competitive inhibition enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) was developed to detect antibodies in serum to the protective antigen (PA) and lethal factor (LF) components of anthrax toxin. Current human vaccination schedules with an acellular vaccine induce predictable and lasting antibody titers to PA and, when present in the vaccine, to LF. Live spore vaccine administered to guinea pigs in a single dose conferred significantly better protection than the human vaccines (P less than 0.00...

  9. Bacillus anthracis interacts with plasmin(ogen to evade C3b-dependent innate immunity.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Myung-Chul Chung

    Full Text Available The causative agent of anthrax, Bacillus anthracis, is capable of circumventing the humoral and innate immune defense of the host and modulating the blood chemistry in circulation to initiate a productive infection. It has been shown that the pathogen employs a number of strategies against immune cells using secreted pathogenic factors such as toxins. However, interference of B. anthracis with the innate immune system through specific interaction of the spore surface with host proteins such as the complement system has heretofore attracted little attention. In order to assess the mechanisms by which B. anthracis evades the defense system, we employed a proteomic analysis to identify human serum proteins interacting with B. anthracis spores, and found that plasminogen (PLG is a major surface-bound protein. PLG efficiently bound to spores in a lysine- and exosporium-dependent manner. We identified α-enolase and elongation factor tu as PLG receptors. PLG-bound spores were capable of exhibiting anti-opsonic properties by cleaving C3b molecules in vitro and in rabbit bronchoalveolar lavage fluid, resulting in a decrease in macrophage phagocytosis. Our findings represent a step forward in understanding the mechanisms involved in the evasion of innate immunity by B. anthracis through recruitment of PLG resulting in the enhancement of anti-complement and anti-opsonization properties of the pathogen.

  10. Observations on the Inactivation Efficacy of a MALDI-TOF MS Chemical Extraction Method on Bacillus anthracis Vegetative Cells and Spores.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Simon A Weller

    Full Text Available A chemical (ethanol; formic acid; acetonitrile protein extraction method for the preparation of bacterial samples for matrix assisted laser desorption ionisation time-of-flight mass spectrometry (MALDI-TOF MS identification was evaluated for its ability to inactivate bacterial species. Initial viability tests (with and without double filtration of the extract through 0.2 μM filters, indicated that the method could inactivate Escherichia coli MRE 162 and Klebsiella pneumoniae ATCC 35657, with or without filtration, but that filtration was required to exclude viable, avirulent, Bacillus anthracis UM23CL2 from extracts. Multiple, high stringency, viability experiments were then carried out on entire filtered extracts prepared from virulent B. anthracis Vollum vegetative cells and spores ranging in concentration from 10(6-10(8 cfu per extract. B. anthracis was recovered in 3/18 vegetative cell extracts and 10/18 spore extracts. From vegetative cell extracts B. anthracis was only recovered from extracts that had undergone prolonged Luria (L-broth (7 day and L-agar plate (a further 7 days incubations. We hypothesise that the recovery of B. anthracis in vegetative cell extracts is due to the escape of individual sub-lethally injured cells. We discuss our results in view of working practises in clinical laboratories and in the context of recent inadvertent releases of viable B. anthracis.

  11. Observations on the Inactivation Efficacy of a MALDI-TOF MS Chemical Extraction Method on Bacillus anthracis Vegetative Cells and Spores.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weller, Simon A; Stokes, Margaret G M; Lukaszewski, Roman A

    2015-01-01

    A chemical (ethanol; formic acid; acetonitrile) protein extraction method for the preparation of bacterial samples for matrix assisted laser desorption ionisation time-of-flight mass spectrometry (MALDI-TOF MS) identification was evaluated for its ability to inactivate bacterial species. Initial viability tests (with and without double filtration of the extract through 0.2 μM filters), indicated that the method could inactivate Escherichia coli MRE 162 and Klebsiella pneumoniae ATCC 35657, with or without filtration, but that filtration was required to exclude viable, avirulent, Bacillus anthracis UM23CL2 from extracts. Multiple, high stringency, viability experiments were then carried out on entire filtered extracts prepared from virulent B. anthracis Vollum vegetative cells and spores ranging in concentration from 10(6)-10(8) cfu per extract. B. anthracis was recovered in 3/18 vegetative cell extracts and 10/18 spore extracts. From vegetative cell extracts B. anthracis was only recovered from extracts that had undergone prolonged Luria (L)-broth (7 day) and L-agar plate (a further 7 days) incubations. We hypothesise that the recovery of B. anthracis in vegetative cell extracts is due to the escape of individual sub-lethally injured cells. We discuss our results in view of working practises in clinical laboratories and in the context of recent inadvertent releases of viable B. anthracis. PMID:26633884

  12. New aspects of the infection mechanisms of Bacillus anthracis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zakowska, Dorota; Bartoszcze, Michał; Niemcewicz, Marcin; Bielawska-Drózd, Agata; Kocik, Janusz

    2012-01-01

    Articles concerning new aspects of B. anthracis mechanisms of infection were reviewed. It was found, that the hair follicle plays an important role in the spore germination process. The hair follicle represent an important portal of entry in the course of the cutaneous form of disease infections. After mouse exposition to aerosol of spores prepared from B. anthracis strains, an increase in the level of TNF-α cytokines was observed. The TNF-α cytokines were produced after intrusion into the host by the microorganism. This process may play a significant role in the induced migration of infected cells APCs (Antigen Presenting Cells) via chemotactic signals to the lymph nodes. It was explained that IgG, which binds to the spore surface, activates the adaptive immune system response. As a result, the release C3b opsonin from the spore surface, and mediating of C3 protein fragments of B. anthracis spores phagocytosis by human macrophages, was observed. The genes coding germination spores protein in mutant strains of B. anthracis MIGD was a crucial discovery. According to this, it could be assumed that the activity of B. anthracis spores germination process is dependent upon the sleB, cwlJ1 and cwlJ2 genes, which code the GSLEs lithic enzymes. It was also discovered that the specific antibody for PA20, which binds to the PA20 antigenic determinant, are able to block further PA83 proteolytic fission on the surface of cells. This process neutralized PA functions and weakened the activity of free PA20, which is produced during the PA83 enzyme fission process. Interaction between PA63 monomer and LF may be helpful in the PA63 oligomerization and grouping process, and the creation of LF/PA63 complexes may be a part of an alternative process of assembling the anthrax toxin on the surface of cells. It was found that actin-dependent endocytosis plays an important role in the PA heptamerisation process and leads to blocking the toxin activity. Chaperones, a protein derived from

  13. The Pathogenomic Sequence Analysis of B. cereus and B.thuringiensis Isolates Closely Related to Bacillus anthracis

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Han, Cliff S.; Xie, Gary; Challacombe, Jean F.; Altherr, MichaelR.; Smriti, B.; Bruce, David; Campbell, Connie S.; Campbell, Mary L.; Chen, Jin; Chertkov, Olga; Cleland, Cathy; Dimitrijevic-Bussod, M.; Doggett, Norman A.; Fawcett, John J.; Glavina, Tijana; Goodwin, Lynne A.; Hill, Karen K.; Hitchcock, Penny; Jackson, Paul J.; Keim, Paul; Kewalramani, Avinash Ramesh; Longmire, Jon; Lucas, Susan; Malfatti,Stephanie; McMurry, Kim; Meincke, Linda J.; Misra, Monica; Moseman,Bernice L.; Mundt, Mark; Munk, A. Christine; Okinaka, Richard T.; Parson-Quintana, B.; Reilly, Lee P.; Richardson, Paul; Robinson, DonnaL.; Rubin, Eddy; Saunders, Elizabeth; Tapia, Roxanne; Tesmer, Judith G.; Thayer, Nina; Thompson, Linda S.; Tice, Hope; Ticknor, Lawrence O.; Wills, Patti L.; Gilna, Payl; Brettin, Thomas S.

    2005-08-18

    The sequencing and analysis of two close relatives of Bacillus anthracis are reported. AFLP analysis of over 300 isolates of B.cereus, B. thuringiensis and B. anthracis identified two isolates as being very closely related to B. anthracis. One, a B. cereus, BcE33L, was isolated from a zebra carcass in Nambia; the second, a B. thuringiensis, 97-27, was isolated from a necrotic human wound. The B. cereus appears to be the closest anthracis relative sequenced to date. A core genome of over 3,900 genes was compiled for the Bacillus cereus group, including Banthracis. Comparative analysis of these two genomes with other members of the B. cereus group provides insight into the evolutionary relationships among these organisms. Evidence is presented that differential regulation modulates virulence, rather than simple acquisition of virulence factors. These genome sequences provide insight into the molecular mechanisms contributing to the host range and virulence of this group of organisms.

  14. ANTI-LETHAL FACTOR FROM OPOSSUM SERUM IS A POTENT ANTIDOTE FOR ANIMAL, PLANT AND BACTERIAL TOXINS

    OpenAIRE

    Lipps, B V

    1999-01-01

    Currently, the use of antivenoms is the only available treatment for envenomation caused by venomous animals namely, snake, scorpion, spider, tick and jelly fish. Antivenoms are generally produced in large animals, mostly in horses. A large percentage of the population is allergic to horse proteins. Several animals are known to be resistant to snakebites and the antihemorrhagic and anti-lethal components have been isolated from sera of opossum, mongoose, meerkat and hedgehog, as well as from ...

  15. Structure of purine nucleoside phosphorylase (DeoD) from Bacillus anthracis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The crystal structure of purine nucleoside phosphorylase (DeoD) from B. anthracis was solved by X-ray crystallography using molecular replacement and refined at a resolution of 2.24 Å. Protein structures from the causative agent of anthrax (Bacillus anthracis) are being determined as part of a structural genomics programme. Amongst initial candidates for crystallographic analysis are enzymes involved in nucleotide biosynthesis, since these are recognized as potential targets in antibacterial therapy. Purine nucleoside phosphorylase is a key enzyme in the purine-salvage pathway. The crystal structure of purine nucleoside phosphorylase (DeoD) from B. anthracis has been solved by molecular replacement at 2.24 Å resolution and refined to an R factor of 18.4%. This is the first report of a DeoD structure from a Gram-positive bacterium

  16. The role of anthrolysin O in gut epithelial barrier disruption during Bacillus anthracis infection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bishop, Brian L; Lodolce, James P; Kolodziej, Lauren E; Boone, David L; Tang, Wei Jen

    2010-04-01

    Gastrointestinal (GI) anthrax, caused by the bacterial infection of Bacillus anthracis, posts a significant bioterrorism threat by its relatively high mortality rate in humans. Different from inhalational anthrax by the route of infection, accumulating evidence indicates the bypass of vegetative bacteria across GI epithelium is required to initiate GI anthrax. Previously, we reported that purified anthrolysin O (ALO), instead of tripartite anthrax edema and lethal toxins, is capable of disrupting gut epithelial tight junctions and barrier function in cultured cells. Here, we show that ALO can disrupt intestinal tissue barrier function in an ex vivo mouse model. To explore the effects of ALO in a cell culture model of B. anthracis infection, we showed that anthrax bacteria can effectively reduce the monolayer integrity of human Caco-2 brush-border expressor (C2BBE) cells based on the reduced transepithelial resistance and the increased leakage of fluorescent dye. This disruption is likely caused by tight junction dysfunction observed by the reorganization of the tight junction protein occludin. Consequently, we observe significant passage of vegetative anthrax bacteria across C2BBE cells. This barrier disruption and bacterial crossover requires ALO since ALO-deficient B. anthracis strains fail to induce monolayer dysfunction and allow the passage of anthrax bacteria. Together these findings point to a pivotal role for ALO within the establishment of GI anthrax infection and the initial bypass of the epithelial barrier. PMID:20188700

  17. A Novel FtsZ-Like Protein Is Involved in Replication of the Anthrax Toxin-Encoding pXO1 Plasmid in Bacillus anthracis

    OpenAIRE

    Tinsley, Eowyn; Khan, Saleem A.

    2006-01-01

    Plasmid pXO1 encodes the tripartite anthrax toxin, which is the major virulence factor of Bacillus anthracis. In spite of the important role of pXO1 in anthrax pathogenesis, very little is known about its replication and maintenance in B. anthracis. We cloned a 5-kb region of the pXO1 plasmid into an Escherichia coli vector and showed that this plasmid can replicate when introduced into B. anthracis. Mutational analysis showed that open reading frame 45 (repX) of pXO1 was required for the rep...

  18. Passive Immunotherapy Protects against Enteric Invasion and Lethal Sepsis in a Murine Model of Gastrointestinal Anthrax

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huang, Bruce; Xie, Tao; Rotstein, David; Fang, Hui; Frucht, David M.

    2015-01-01

    The principal portal for anthrax infection in natural animal outbreaks is the digestive tract. Enteric exposure to anthrax, which is difficult to detect or prevent in a timely manner, could be exploited as an act of terror through contamination of human or animal food. Our group has developed a novel animal model of gastrointestinal (GI) anthrax for evaluation of disease pathogenesis and experimental therapeutics, utilizing vegetative Bacillus anthracis (Sterne strain) administered to A/J mice (a complement-deficient strain) by oral gavage. We hypothesized that a humanized recombinant monoclonal antibody (mAb) * that neutralizes the protective antigen (PA) component of B. anthracis lethal toxin (LT) and edema toxin (ET) could be an effective treatment. Although the efficacy of this anti-anthrax PA mAb has been shown in animal models of inhalational anthrax, its activity in GI infection had not yet been ascertained. We hereby demonstrate that passive immunotherapy with anti-anthrax PA mAb, administered at the same time as gastrointestinal exposure to B. anthracis, prevents lethal sepsis in nearly all cases (>90%), while a delay of up to forty-eight hours in treatment still greatly reduces mortality following exposure (65%). Moreover, passive immunotherapy protects against enteric invasion, associated mucosal injury and subsequent dissemination by gastrointestinal B. anthracis, indicating that it acts to prevent the initial stages of infection. * Expired raxibacumab being cycled off the Strategic National Stockpile; biological activity confirmed by in vitro assay. PMID:26426050

  19. A synthetic lethality-based strategy to treat cancers harboring a genetic deficiency in the chromatin remodeling factor BRG1.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oike, Takahiro; Ogiwara, Hideaki; Tominaga, Yuichi; Ito, Kentaro; Ando, Osamu; Tsuta, Koji; Mizukami, Tatsuji; Shimada, Yoko; Isomura, Hisanori; Komachi, Mayumi; Furuta, Koh; Watanabe, Shun-Ichi; Nakano, Takashi; Yokota, Jun; Kohno, Takashi

    2013-09-01

    The occurrence of inactivating mutations in SWI/SNF chromatin-remodeling genes in common cancers has attracted a great deal of interest. However, mechanistic strategies to target tumor cells carrying such mutations are yet to be developed. This study proposes a synthetic-lethality therapy for treating cancers deficient in the SWI/SNF catalytic (ATPase) subunit, BRG1/SMARCA4. The strategy relies upon inhibition of BRM/SMARCA2, another catalytic SWI/SNF subunit with a BRG1-related activity. Immunohistochemical analysis of a cohort of non-small-cell lung carcinomas (NSCLC) indicated that 15.5% (16 of 103) of the cohort, corresponding to preferentially undifferentiated tumors, was deficient in BRG1 expression. All BRG1-deficient cases were negative for alterations in known therapeutic target genes, for example, EGFR and DDR2 gene mutations, ALK gene fusions, or FGFR1 gene amplifications. RNA interference (RNAi)-mediated silencing of BRM suppressed the growth of BRG1-deficient cancer cells relative to BRG1-proficient cancer cells, inducing senescence via activation of p21/CDKN1A. This growth suppression was reversed by transduction of wild-type but not ATPase-deficient BRG1. In support of these in vitro results, a conditional RNAi study conducted in vivo revealed that BRM depletion suppressed the growth of BRG1-deficient tumor xenografts. Our results offer a rationale to develop BRM-ATPase inhibitors as a strategy to treat BRG1/SMARCA4-deficient cancers, including NSCLCs that lack mutations in presently known therapeutic target genes. PMID:23872584

  20. Anthrax lethal toxin induces cell death-independent permeability in zebrafish vasculature

    OpenAIRE

    Bolcome, Robert E.; Sullivan, Sarah E.; Zeller, René; Barker, Adam P.; Collier, R. John; Chan, Joanne

    2008-01-01

    Vascular dysfunction has been reported in human cases of anthrax, in mammalian models of Bacillus anthracis, and in animals injected with anthrax toxin proteins. To examine anthrax lethal toxin effects on intact blood vessels, we developed a zebrafish model that permits in vivo imaging and evaluation of vasculature and cardiovascular function. Vascular defects monitored in hundreds of embryos enabled us to define four stages of phenotypic progression leading to circulatory dysfunction. We dem...

  1. Anthrax toxin targeting of myeloid cells through the CMG2 receptor is essential for establishment of Bacillus anthracis infections in mice

    OpenAIRE

    Liu, Shihui; Miller-Randolph, Sharmina; Crown, Devorah; Moayeri, Mahtab; Sastalla, Inka; Okugawa, Shu; Leppla, Stephen H.

    2010-01-01

    Bacillus anthracis kills through a combination of bacterial infection and toxemia. Anthrax toxin working via the CMG2 receptor mediates lethality late in infection, but its roles early in infection remain unclear. We generated myeloid-lineage specific CMG2-deficient mice to examine the roles of macrophages, neutrophils, and other myeloid cells in anthrax pathogenesis. Macrophages and neutrophils isolated from these mice were resistant to anthrax toxin. However, the myeloid-specific CMG2-defic...

  2. Inactivation of Bacillus anthracis Spores during Laboratory-Scale Composting of Feedlot Cattle Manure

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xu, Shanwei; Harvey, Amanda; Barbieri, Ruth; Reuter, Tim; Stanford, Kim; Amoako, Kingsley K.; Selinger, Leonard B.; McAllister, Tim A.

    2016-01-01

    Anthrax outbreaks in livestock have social, economic and health implications, altering farmer’s livelihoods, impacting trade and posing a zoonotic risk. Our study investigated the survival of Bacillus thuringiensis and B. anthracis spores sporulated at 15, 20, or 37°C, over 33 days of composting. Spores (∼7.5 log10 CFU g-1) were mixed with manure and composted in laboratory scale composters. After 15 days, the compost was mixed and returned to the composter for a second cycle. Temperatures peaked at 71°C on day 2 and remained ≥55°C for an average of 7 days in the first cycle, but did not exceed 55°C in the second. For B. thuringiensis, spores generated at 15 and 21°C exhibited reduced (P < 0.05) viability of 2.7 and 2.6 log10 CFU g-1 respectively, as compared to a 0.6 log10 CFU g-1 reduction for those generated at 37°C. For B. anthracis, sporulation temperature did not impact spore survival as there was a 2.5, 2.2, and 2.8 log10 CFU g-1 reduction after composting for spores generated at 15, 21, and 37°C, respectively. For both species, spore viability declined more rapidly (P < 0.05) in the first as compared to the second composting cycle. Our findings suggest that the duration of thermophilic exposure (≥55°C) is the main factor influencing survival of B. anthracis spores in compost. As sporulation temperature did not influence survival of B. anthracis, composting may lower the viability of spores associated with carcasses infected with B. anthracis over a range of sporulation temperatures. PMID:27303388

  3. Inactivation of Bacillus anthracis Spores during Laboratory-Scale Composting of Feedlot Cattle Manure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xu, Shanwei; Harvey, Amanda; Barbieri, Ruth; Reuter, Tim; Stanford, Kim; Amoako, Kingsley K; Selinger, Leonard B; McAllister, Tim A

    2016-01-01

    Anthrax outbreaks in livestock have social, economic and health implications, altering farmer's livelihoods, impacting trade and posing a zoonotic risk. Our study investigated the survival of Bacillus thuringiensis and B. anthracis spores sporulated at 15, 20, or 37°C, over 33 days of composting. Spores (∼7.5 log10 CFU g(-1)) were mixed with manure and composted in laboratory scale composters. After 15 days, the compost was mixed and returned to the composter for a second cycle. Temperatures peaked at 71°C on day 2 and remained ≥55°C for an average of 7 days in the first cycle, but did not exceed 55°C in the second. For B. thuringiensis, spores generated at 15 and 21°C exhibited reduced (P < 0.05) viability of 2.7 and 2.6 log10 CFU g(-1) respectively, as compared to a 0.6 log10 CFU g(-1) reduction for those generated at 37°C. For B. anthracis, sporulation temperature did not impact spore survival as there was a 2.5, 2.2, and 2.8 log10 CFU g(-1) reduction after composting for spores generated at 15, 21, and 37°C, respectively. For both species, spore viability declined more rapidly (P < 0.05) in the first as compared to the second composting cycle. Our findings suggest that the duration of thermophilic exposure (≥55°C) is the main factor influencing survival of B. anthracis spores in compost. As sporulation temperature did not influence survival of B. anthracis, composting may lower the viability of spores associated with carcasses infected with B. anthracis over a range of sporulation temperatures. PMID:27303388

  4. Redefining the Australian Anthrax Belt: Modeling the Ecological Niche and Predicting the Geographic Distribution of Bacillus anthracis.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alassane S Barro

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available The ecology and distribution of B. anthracis in Australia is not well understood, despite the continued occurrence of anthrax outbreaks in the eastern states of the country. Efforts to estimate the spatial extent of the risk of disease have been limited to a qualitative definition of an anthrax belt extending from southeast Queensland through the centre of New South Wales and into northern Victoria. This definition of the anthrax belt does not consider the role of environmental conditions in the distribution of B. anthracis. Here, we used the genetic algorithm for rule-set prediction model system (GARP, historical anthrax outbreaks and environmental data to model the ecological niche of B. anthracis and predict its potential geographic distribution in Australia. Our models reveal the niche of B. anthracis in Australia is characterized by a narrow range of ecological conditions concentrated in two disjunct corridors. The most dominant corridor, used to redefine a new anthrax belt, parallels the Eastern Highlands and runs from north Victoria to central east Queensland through the centre of New South Wales. This study has redefined the anthrax belt in eastern Australia and provides insights about the ecological factors that limit the distribution of B. anthracis at the continental scale for Australia. The geographic distributions identified can help inform anthrax surveillance strategies by public and veterinary health agencies.

  5. Redefining the Australian Anthrax Belt: Modeling the Ecological Niche and Predicting the Geographic Distribution of Bacillus anthracis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barro, Alassane S; Fegan, Mark; Moloney, Barbara; Porter, Kelly; Muller, Janine; Warner, Simone; Blackburn, Jason K

    2016-06-01

    The ecology and distribution of B. anthracis in Australia is not well understood, despite the continued occurrence of anthrax outbreaks in the eastern states of the country. Efforts to estimate the spatial extent of the risk of disease have been limited to a qualitative definition of an anthrax belt extending from southeast Queensland through the centre of New South Wales and into northern Victoria. This definition of the anthrax belt does not consider the role of environmental conditions in the distribution of B. anthracis. Here, we used the genetic algorithm for rule-set prediction model system (GARP), historical anthrax outbreaks and environmental data to model the ecological niche of B. anthracis and predict its potential geographic distribution in Australia. Our models reveal the niche of B. anthracis in Australia is characterized by a narrow range of ecological conditions concentrated in two disjunct corridors. The most dominant corridor, used to redefine a new anthrax belt, parallels the Eastern Highlands and runs from north Victoria to central east Queensland through the centre of New South Wales. This study has redefined the anthrax belt in eastern Australia and provides insights about the ecological factors that limit the distribution of B. anthracis at the continental scale for Australia. The geographic distributions identified can help inform anthrax surveillance strategies by public and veterinary health agencies. PMID:27280981

  6. Redefining the Australian Anthrax Belt: Modeling the Ecological Niche and Predicting the Geographic Distribution of Bacillus anthracis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barro, Alassane S.; Fegan, Mark; Moloney, Barbara; Porter, Kelly; Muller, Janine; Warner, Simone; Blackburn, Jason K.

    2016-01-01

    The ecology and distribution of B. anthracis in Australia is not well understood, despite the continued occurrence of anthrax outbreaks in the eastern states of the country. Efforts to estimate the spatial extent of the risk of disease have been limited to a qualitative definition of an anthrax belt extending from southeast Queensland through the centre of New South Wales and into northern Victoria. This definition of the anthrax belt does not consider the role of environmental conditions in the distribution of B. anthracis. Here, we used the genetic algorithm for rule-set prediction model system (GARP), historical anthrax outbreaks and environmental data to model the ecological niche of B. anthracis and predict its potential geographic distribution in Australia. Our models reveal the niche of B. anthracis in Australia is characterized by a narrow range of ecological conditions concentrated in two disjunct corridors. The most dominant corridor, used to redefine a new anthrax belt, parallels the Eastern Highlands and runs from north Victoria to central east Queensland through the centre of New South Wales. This study has redefined the anthrax belt in eastern Australia and provides insights about the ecological factors that limit the distribution of B. anthracis at the continental scale for Australia. The geographic distributions identified can help inform anthrax surveillance strategies by public and veterinary health agencies. PMID:27280981

  7. Enhanced survival of lethally irradiated adenosine A(3) receptor knockout mice. A role for hematopoietic growth factors?

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Hofer, Michal; Pospíšil, Milan; Dušek, L.; Hoferová, Zuzana; Komůrková, Denisa

    2015-01-01

    Roč. 11, č. 1 (2015), s. 79-85. ISSN 1573-9538 Institutional support: RVO:68081707 Keywords : G-CSF PRODUCTION * CANCER -THERAPY * CELL-GROWTH Subject RIV: BO - Biophysics Impact factor: 3.886, year: 2014

  8. cis-Acting Elements That Control Expression of the Master Virulence Regulatory Gene atxA in Bacillus anthracis

    OpenAIRE

    Dale, Jennifer L.; Raynor, Malik J.; Dwivedi, Prabhat; Koehler, Theresa M.

    2012-01-01

    Transcription of the Bacillus anthracis structural genes for the anthrax toxin proteins and biosynthetic operon for capsule is positively regulated by AtxA, a transcription regulator with unique properties. Consistent with the role of atxA in virulence factor expression, a B. anthracis atxA-null mutant is avirulent in a murine model for anthrax. In culture, multiple signals impact atxA transcript levels, and the timing and steady-state level of atxA expression are critical for optimal toxin a...

  9. Bronchial hyperreactivity, increased endotoxin lethality and melanocytic tumorigenesis in transgenic mice overexpressing platelet-activating factor receptor.

    OpenAIRE

    Ishii, S.; Nagase, T; Tashiro, F; Ikuta, K. (Koichi); Sato, S.; Waga, I.; Kume, K.; Miyazaki, J; Shimizu, T

    1997-01-01

    Although platelet-activating factor (PAF) has been shown to exert pleiotropic effects on isolated cells or tissues, controversy still exists as to whether it plays significant pathophysiological roles in vivo. To answer this question, we established transgenic mice over-expressing a guinea-pig PAF receptor (PAFR). The transgenic mice showed a bronchial hyperreactivity to methacholine and an increased mortality when exposed to bacterial endotoxin. An aberrant melanogenesis and proliferative ab...

  10. Genomic and immunologic factors associated with viral pathogenesis in a lethal EV71 infected neonatal mouse model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yue, Yingying; Li, Peng; Song, Nannan; Li, Bingqing; Li, Zhihui; Guo, Yuqi; Zhang, Weidong; Wei, Ming Q; Gai, Zhongtao; Meng, Hong; Wang, Jiwen; Qin, Lizeng

    2016-05-01

    Hand, foot and mouth disease (HFMD) caused by enterovirus 71 (EV71) has emerged as a major health problem in China and worldwide. The present study aimed to understand the virological features of EV71 and host responses resulting from EV71 infection. Six different EV71 strains were isolated from HFMD patients with severe or mild clinical symptoms, and were analyzed for pathogenicity in vitro and in vivo. The results demonstrated that the six virus strains exhibited similar cytopathogenic effects on susceptible MA104 cells. However, marked differences in histological and immunopathological changes were observed when mice were inoculated with the different virus strains. Thus, the viruses studied were divided into two groups, highly or weakly pathogenic. Two representative virus strains, JN200804 and JN200803 (highly and weakly pathogenic, respectively) were studied further to investigate pathogenicity-associated factors, including genetic mutations and immunopathogenesis. The present study has demonstrated that highly pathogenic strains have stable genome and amino acid sequences. Notably, the present study demonstrated that a highly pathogenic strain induced a significant increase of the bulk CD4 T cell levels at 3 days post‑inoculation. In conclusion, the current study demonstrates that genomic and immunologic factors may be responsible for the multiple tissue damage caused by highly pathogenic EV71 infection. PMID:27035332

  11. Genetic Characterization of Bacillus anthracis 17 JB strain

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sakineh Seyed-Mohamadi

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available Background and Objectives: Bacillus anthracis is one of the most homogenous bacteria ever described. Bacillus anthracis 17JB is a laboratory strain. It is broadly used as a challenge strain in guinea pigs for potency test of anthrax vaccine.Material and Methods: This work describes genetic characterization of B. anthracis 17 JB strain using the SNPs and MLVA genotyping.Results and Conclusion: In SNPs typing, the originally French 17JB strain represented the A. Br. 008/009 subgroup. In Levy's genotyping method, 843, 451 and 864 bp long fragments were identified at AA03, AJ03 and AA07 loci, respectively. In the vaccine manufacturer perspective these findings are much valuable on their own account, but similar research is required to extend molecular knowledge of B. anthracis epidemiology in Persia.Keywords: Bacillus anthracis 17JB, Genetic characterization, SNPs typing

  12. Identifying experimental surrogates for Bacillus anthracis spores: a review

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Greenberg David L

    2010-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Bacillus anthracis, the causative agent of anthrax, is a proven biological weapon. In order to study this threat, a number of experimental surrogates have been used over the past 70 years. However, not all surrogates are appropriate for B. anthracis, especially when investigating transport, fate and survival. Although B. atrophaeus has been widely used as a B. anthracis surrogate, the two species do not always behave identically in transport and survival models. Therefore, we devised a scheme to identify a more appropriate surrogate for B. anthracis. Our selection criteria included risk of use (pathogenicity, phylogenetic relationship, morphology and comparative survivability when challenged with biocides. Although our knowledge of certain parameters remains incomplete, especially with regards to comparisons of spore longevity under natural conditions, we found that B. thuringiensis provided the best overall fit as a non-pathogenic surrogate for B. anthracis. Thus, we suggest focusing on this surrogate in future experiments of spore fate and transport modelling.

  13. Fate of Bacillus anthracis during production of laboratory-scale cream cheese and homemade-style yoghurt.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mertens, Katja; Schneider, Oda; Schmoock, Gernot; Melzer, Falk; Elschner, Mandy C

    2015-04-01

    The viability of Bacillus anthracis during production and storage of cream cheese and yoghurt was evaluated. Experimental cheeses were manufactured from whole milk inoculated with a suspension of B. anthracis vegetative cells and spores at a final concentration of 10(4) cfu/ml. Lactic acid bacteria (LAB) and lab ferment were used to induce milk ripening and milk coagulation. The pH-value of the contaminated milk dropped below 4.5 within the first 6 h and the amount of LAB increased by approximately 2-logs. During cheese production and storage at 5-9 °C for 24 days no growth of B. anthracis was observed. The amount of vegetative cells and spores fluctuated by 1-log. Inoculation of whole milk with heat-treated spores at 10(4) cfu/ml resulted in a slight increase of vegetative cell counts during the first 6 h. This indicated that germination occurred, but replication of vegetative cells was still inhibited in the produced cheese. Incubation of cheeses at room temperature or heating after milk coagulation strongly reduced the amount of LAB but had no effect on the growth behaviour of B. anthracis. The vegetative cell and spore content remained steady at 10(4) cfu/100 mg. During yoghurt production the pH-value decreased within 5 h below 5 and growth of B. anthracis was inhibited throughout storage. A pH-value of 5 or less is likely a critical factor to control the growth of B. anthracis. However, spores remained viable in experimental cream cheeses and yoghurts and are a potential risk of infection. PMID:25475304

  14. Development of an in Vitro Potency Assay for Anti-anthrax Lethal Toxin Neutralizing Antibodies

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    Sjoerd Rijpkema

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Lethal toxin (LT of Bacillus anthracis reduces the production of a number of inflammatory mediators, including transcription factors, chemokines and cytokines in various human cell lines, leading to down-regulation of the host inflammatory response. Previously we showed that the reduction of interleukin-8 (IL-8 is a sensitive marker of LT-mediated intoxication in human neutrophil-like NB-4 cells and that IL-8 levels are restored to normality when therapeutic monoclonal antibodies (mAb with toxin-neutralising (TN activity are added. We used this information to develop cell-based assays that examine the effects of TN therapeutic mAbs designed to treat LT intoxication and here we extend these findings. We present an in vitro assay based on human endothelial cell line HUVEC jr2, which measures the TN activity of therapeutic anti-LT mAbs using IL-8 as a marker for intoxication. HUVEC jr2 cells have the advantage over NB-4 cells that they are adherent, do not require a differentiation step and can be used in a microtitre plate format and therefore can facilitate high throughput analysis. This human cell-based assay provides a valid alternative to the mouse macrophage assay as it is a more biologically relevant model of the effects of toxin-neutralising antibodies in human infection.

  15. Detection of Bacillus anthracis DNA by LightCycler PCR

    OpenAIRE

    Bell, Constance A.; Uhl, James R.; Hadfield, Ted L.; David, John C.; Meyer, Richard F.; Smith, Thomas F.; Cockerill III, Franklin R.

    2002-01-01

    Anthrax is a zoonotic disease that is also well recognized as a potential agent of bioterrorism. Routine culture and biochemical testing methods are useful for the identification of Bacillus anthracis, but a definitive identification may take 24 to 48 h or longer and may require that specimens be referred to another laboratory. Virulent isolates of B. anthracis contain two plasmids (pX01 and pX02) with unique targets that allow the rapid and specific identification of B. anthracis by PCR. We ...

  16. Next-Generation Bacillus anthracis Live Attenuated Spore Vaccine Based on the htrA(-) (High Temperature Requirement A) Sterne Strain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chitlaru, Theodor; Israeli, Ma'ayan; Bar-Haim, Erez; Elia, Uri; Rotem, Shahar; Ehrlich, Sharon; Cohen, Ofer; Shafferman, Avigdor

    2016-01-01

    Anthrax is a lethal disease caused by the gram-positive spore-producing bacterium Bacillus anthracis. Live attenuated vaccines, such as the nonencapsulated Sterne strain, do not meet the safety standards mandated for human use in the Western world and are approved for veterinary purposes only. Here we demonstrate that disrupting the htrA gene, encoding the chaperone/protease HtrA (High Temperature Requirement A), in the virulent Bacillus anthracis Vollum strain results in significant virulence attenuation in guinea pigs, rabbits and mice, underlying the universality of the attenuated phenotype associated with htrA knockout. Accordingly, htrA disruption was implemented for the development of a Sterne-derived safe live vaccine compatible with human use. The novel B. anthracis SterneΔhtrA strain secretes functional anthrax toxins but is 10-10(4)-fold less virulent than the Sterne vaccine strain depending on animal model (mice, guinea pigs, or rabbits). In spite of this attenuation, double or even single immunization with SterneΔhtrA spores elicits immune responses which target toxaemia and bacteremia resulting in protection from subcutaneous or respiratory lethal challenge with a virulent strain in guinea pigs and rabbits. The efficacy of the immune-protective response in guinea pigs was maintained for at least 50 weeks after a single immunization. PMID:26732659

  17. Acceleration of epithelial cell syndecan-1 shedding by anthrax hemolytic virulence factors

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chandhoke Vikas

    2006-02-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background It has been recently reported that major pathogens Staphylococcus aureus and Pseudomonas aeruginosa accelerate a normal process of cell surface syndecan-1 (Synd1 ectodomain shedding as a mechanism of host damage due to the production of shedding-inducing virulence factors. We tested if acceleration of Synd1 shedding takes place in vitro upon treatment of epithelial cells with B. anthracis hemolysins, as well as in vivo during anthrax infection in mice. Results The isolated anthrax hemolytic proteins AnlB (sphingomyelinase and AnlO (cholesterol-binding pore-forming factor, as well as ClnA (B. cereus homolog of B. anthracis phosphatidyl choline-preferring phospholipase C cause accelerated shedding of Synd1 and E-cadherin from epithelial cells and compromise epithelial barrier integrity within a few hours. In comparison with hemolysins in a similar range of concentrations, anthrax lethal toxin (LT also accelerates shedding albeit at slower rate. Individual components of LT, lethal factor and protective antigen are inactive with regard to shedding. Inhibition experiments favor a hypothesis that activities of tested bacterial shedding inducers converge on the stimulation of cytoplasmic tyrosine kinases of the Syk family, ultimately leading to activation of cellular sheddase. Both LT and AnlO modulate ERK1/2 and p38 MAPK signaling pathways, while JNK pathway seems to be irrelevant to accelerated shedding. Accelerated shedding of Synd1 also takes place in DBA/2 mice challenged with Bacillus anthracis (Sterne spores. Elevated levels of shed ectodomain are readily detectable in circulation after 24 h. Conclusion The concerted acceleration of shedding by several virulence factors could represent a new pathogenic mechanism contributing to disruption of epithelial or endothelial integrity, hemorrhage, edema and abnormal cell signaling during anthrax infection.

  18. Identification of the pXO1 plasmid in attenuated Bacillus anthracis vaccine strains.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liang, Xudong; Zhang, Huijuan; Zhang, Enmin; Wei, Jianchun; Li, Wei; Wang, Bingxiang; Dong, Shulin; Zhu, Jin

    2016-07-01

    Anthrax toxins and capsule are the major virulence factors of Bacillus anthracis. They are encoded by genes located on the plasmids pXO1 and pXO2, respectively. The vaccine strain Pasteur II was produced from high temperature subcultures of B. anthracis, which resulted in virulence attenuation through the loss of the plasmid pXO1. However, it is unclear whether the high temperature culture completely abolishes the plasmid DNA or affects the replication of the plasmid pXO1. In this study, we tested 3 B. anthracis vaccine strains, including Pasteur II from France, Qiankefusiji II from Russia, and Rentian II from Japan, which were all generated from subcultures at high temperatures. Surprisingly, we detected the presence of pXO1 plasmid DNA using overlap PCR in all these vaccine strains. DNA sequencing analysis of overlap PCR products further confirmed the presence of pXO1. Moreover, the expression of the protective antigen (PA) encoded on pXO1 was determined by using SDS-PAGE and western blotting. In addition, we mimicked Pasteur's method and exposed the A16R vaccine strain, which lacks the pXO2 plasmid, to high temperature, and identified the pXO1 plasmid in the subcultures at high temperatures. This indicated that the high temperature treatment at 42.5°C was unable to eliminate pXO1 plasmid DNA from B. anthracis. Our results suggest that the attenuation of the Pasteur II vaccine strain is likely due to the impact of high temperature stress on plasmid replication, which in turn limits the copy number of pXO1. Our data provide new insights into the mechanisms of the remaining immunogenicity and toxicity of the vaccine strains. PMID:27029580

  19. Potential role of autophagy in the bactericidal activity of human PMNs for Bacillus anthracis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ramachandran, Girish; Gade, Padmaja; Tsai, Pei; Lu, Wuyuan; Kalvakolanu, Dhananjaya V; Rosen, Gerald M; Cross, Alan S

    2015-12-01

    Bacillus anthracis, the causative agent of anthrax, is acquired by mammalian hosts from the environment, as quiescent endospores. These endospores must germinate inside host cells, forming vegetative bacilli, before they can express the virulence factors that enable them to evade host defenses and disseminate throughout the body. While the role of macrophages and dendritic cells in this initial interaction has been established, the role of polymorphonuclear leukocytes (PMNs) has not been adequately defined. We discovered that while B. anthracis 34F2 Sterne endospores germinate poorly within non-activated human PMNs, these phagocytes exhibit rapid microbicidal activity toward the outgrown vegetative bacilli, independent of superoxide and nitric oxide. These findings suggest that a non-free radical pathway kills B. anthracis bacilli. We also find in PMNs an autophagic mechanism of bacterial killing based on the rapid induction of LC-3 conversion, beclin-1 expression, sequestosome 1 (SQSTM1) degradation and inhibition of bactericidal activity by the inhibitor, 3-methyladenine. These findings extend to PMNs an autophagic bactericidal mechanism previously described for other phagocytes. PMID:26424808

  20. Immunological analysis of cell-associated antigens of Bacillus anthracis.

    OpenAIRE

    Ezzell, J W; Abshire, T. G.

    1988-01-01

    Sera from Hartley guinea pigs vaccinated with a veterinary live spore anthrax vaccine were compared with sera from guinea pigs vaccinated with the human anthrax vaccine, which consists of aluminum hydroxide-adsorbed culture proteins of Bacillus anthracis V770-NP-1R. Sera from animals vaccinated with the spore vaccine recognized two major B. anthracis vegetative cell-associated proteins that were either not recognized or poorly recognized by sera from animals that received the human vaccine. T...

  1. Functional Comparison of the Two Bacillus anthracis Glutamate Racemases▿

    OpenAIRE

    Dodd, Dylan; Reese, Joseph G.; Louer, Craig R.; Ballard, Jimmy D.; Spies, M. Ashley; Blanke, Steven R.

    2007-01-01

    Glutamate racemase activity in Bacillus anthracis is of significant interest with respect to chemotherapeutic drug design, because l-glutamate stereoisomerization to d-glutamate is predicted to be closely associated with peptidoglycan and capsule biosynthesis, which are important for growth and virulence, respectively. In contrast to most bacteria, which harbor a single glutamate racemase gene, the genomic sequence of B. anthracis predicts two genes encoding glutamate racemases, racE1 and rac...

  2. Molecular Epidemiology of Bacillus anthracis: Determining the Correct Origin▿

    OpenAIRE

    Pilo, Paola; Perreten, Vincent; Frey, Joachim

    2008-01-01

    We analyzed and compared strains of Bacillus anthracis isolated from husbandry and industrial anthrax cases in Switzerland between 1952 and 1981 with published data using multiple-locus variable-number tandem repeat analysis. Strains isolated from autochthonous cases of anthrax in cattle belong to genotype B2, together with strains from continental Europe, while human B. anthracis strains clustered with genotype A4. These strains could be traced back to outbreaks of human anthrax that occurre...

  3. Natural Dissemination of Bacillus anthracis Spores in Northern Canada

    OpenAIRE

    Dragon, D C; Bader, D. E.; Mitchell, J.; Woollen, N.

    2005-01-01

    Soil samples were collected from around fresh and year-old bison carcasses and areas not associated with known carcasses in Wood Buffalo National Park during an active anthrax outbreak in the summer of 2001. Sample selection with a grid provided the most complete coverage of a site. Soil samples were screened for viable Bacillus anthracis spores via selective culture, phenotypic analysis, and PCR. Bacillus anthracis spores were isolated from 28.4% of the samples. The highest concentrations of...

  4. Production and purification of Bacillus anthracis protective antigen

    OpenAIRE

    2005-01-01

    Protective antigen (PA) plays crucial roles in the pathogenicity and virulence of Bacillus anthracis. Animals or human immunised with the protein acquire a complete protection against the disease. In addition to vaccine, PA can also be developed into a sensitive diagnostic test for anthrax. The purpose of this study was to produce PA using a culture medium easily obtained, and to develop a simple and effective technique for purification of the protein. To produce PA, B. anthracis Sterne 34F2 ...

  5. Bacillus anthracis IsdG, a Heme-Degrading Monooxygenase

    OpenAIRE

    Skaar, Eric P.; Gaspar, Andrew H.; Schneewind, Olaf

    2006-01-01

    Bacillus anthracis, the causative agent of anthrax, utilizes hemin and hemoglobin for growth in culture, suggesting that these host molecules serve as sources for the nutrient iron during bacterial infection. Bioinformatic analyses of the B. anthracis genome revealed genes with similarity to the iron-regulated surface determinant (isd) system responsible for heme uptake in Staphylococcus aureus. We show that the protein product of one of these genes, isdG, binds hemin in a manner resembling t...

  6. Genetic analysis of petrobactin transport in Bacillus anthracis

    OpenAIRE

    Carlson, Paul E.; Dixon, Shandee D.; Janes, Brian K.; Carr, Katherine A.; Nusca, Tyler D.; Anderson, Erica C.; Keene, Sarra E.; Sherman, David H.; Hanna, Philip C.

    2010-01-01

    Iron acquisition mechanisms play an important role in the pathogenesis of many infectious microbes. In Bacillus anthracis, the siderophore petrobactin is required for both growth in iron depleted conditions and for full virulence of the bacterium. Here we demonstrate the roles of two putative petrobactin binding proteins FatB and FpuA (encoded by GBAA5330 and GBAA4766, respectively) in Bacillus anthracis iron acquisition and pathogenesis. Markerless deletion mutants were created using allelic...

  7. Human Monoclonal Antibody AVP-21D9 to Protective Antigen Reduces Dissemination of the Bacillus anthracis Ames Strain from the Lungs in a Rabbit Model▿

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peterson, Johnny W.; Comer, Jason E.; Baze, Wallace B.; Noffsinger, David M.; Wenglikowski, Autumn; Walberg, Kristin G.; Hardcastle, Jason; Pawlik, Jennifer; Bush, Kathryn; Taormina, Joanna; Moen, Scott; Thomas, John; Chatuev, Bagram M.; Sower, Laurie; Chopra, Ashok K.; Stanberry, Lawrence R.; Sawada, Ritsuko; Scholz, Wolfgang W.; Sircar, Jagadish

    2007-01-01

    Dutch-belted and New Zealand White rabbits were passively immunized with AVP-21D9, a human monoclonal antibody to protective antigen (PA), at the time of Bacillus anthracis spore challenge using either nasal instillation or aerosol challenge techniques. AVP-21D9 (10 mg/kg) completely protected both rabbit strains against lethal infection with Bacillus anthracis Ames spores, regardless of the inoculation method. Further, all but one of the passively immunized animals (23/24) were completely resistant to rechallenge with spores by either respiratory challenge method at 5 weeks after primary challenge. Analysis of the sera at 5 weeks after primary challenge showed that residual human anti-PA levels decreased by 85 to 95%, but low titers of rabbit-specific anti-PA titers were also measured. Both sources of anti-PA could have contributed to protection from rechallenge. In a subsequent study, bacteriological and histopathology analyses revealed that B. anthracis disseminated to the bloodstream in some naïve animals as early as 24 h postchallenge and increased in frequency with time. AVP-21D9 significantly reduced the dissemination of the bacteria to the bloodstream and to various organs following infection. Examination of tissue sections from infected control animals, stained with hematoxylin-eosin and the Gram stain, showed edema and/or hemorrhage in the lungs and the presence of bacteria in mediastinal lymph nodes, with necrosis and inflammation. Tissue sections from infected rabbits dosed with AVP-21D9 appeared comparable to corresponding tissues from uninfected animals despite lethal challenge with B. anthracis Ames spores. Concomitant treatment with AVP-21D9 at the time of challenge conferred complete protection in the rabbit inhalation anthrax model. Early treatment increased the efficacy progressively and in a dose-dependent manner. Thus, AVP-21D9 could offer an adjunct or alternative clinical treatment regimen against inhalation anthrax. PMID:17452469

  8. Human monoclonal antibody AVP-21D9 to protective antigen reduces dissemination of the Bacillus anthracis Ames strain from the lungs in a rabbit model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peterson, Johnny W; Comer, Jason E; Baze, Wallace B; Noffsinger, David M; Wenglikowski, Autumn; Walberg, Kristin G; Hardcastle, Jason; Pawlik, Jennifer; Bush, Kathryn; Taormina, Joanna; Moen, Scott; Thomas, John; Chatuev, Bagram M; Sower, Laurie; Chopra, Ashok K; Stanberry, Lawrence R; Sawada, Ritsuko; Scholz, Wolfgang W; Sircar, Jagadish

    2007-07-01

    Dutch-belted and New Zealand White rabbits were passively immunized with AVP-21D9, a human monoclonal antibody to protective antigen (PA), at the time of Bacillus anthracis spore challenge using either nasal instillation or aerosol challenge techniques. AVP-21D9 (10 mg/kg) completely protected both rabbit strains against lethal infection with Bacillus anthracis Ames spores, regardless of the inoculation method. Further, all but one of the passively immunized animals (23/24) were completely resistant to rechallenge with spores by either respiratory challenge method at 5 weeks after primary challenge. Analysis of the sera at 5 weeks after primary challenge showed that residual human anti-PA levels decreased by 85 to 95%, but low titers of rabbit-specific anti-PA titers were also measured. Both sources of anti-PA could have contributed to protection from rechallenge. In a subsequent study, bacteriological and histopathology analyses revealed that B. anthracis disseminated to the bloodstream in some naïve animals as early as 24 h postchallenge and increased in frequency with time. AVP-21D9 significantly reduced the dissemination of the bacteria to the bloodstream and to various organs following infection. Examination of tissue sections from infected control animals, stained with hematoxylin-eosin and the Gram stain, showed edema and/or hemorrhage in the lungs and the presence of bacteria in mediastinal lymph nodes, with necrosis and inflammation. Tissue sections from infected rabbits dosed with AVP-21D9 appeared comparable to corresponding tissues from uninfected animals despite lethal challenge with B. anthracis Ames spores. Concomitant treatment with AVP-21D9 at the time of challenge conferred complete protection in the rabbit inhalation anthrax model. Early treatment increased the efficacy progressively and in a dose-dependent manner. Thus, AVP-21D9 could offer an adjunct or alternative clinical treatment regimen against inhalation anthrax. PMID:17452469

  9. Structure of nicotinic acid mononucleotide adenylyltransferase from Bacillus anthracis

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lu, S.; Smith, C.; Yang, Z.; Pruett, P.; Nagy, L.; McCombs, D; DeLucas, L.; Brouillette, W.; Brouillette, C. (UAB)

    2008-11-25

    Nicotinic acid mononucleotide adenylyltransferase (NaMNAT; EC 2.7.7.18) is the penultimate enzyme in the biosynthesis of NAD{sup +} and catalyzes the adenylation of nicotinic acid mononucleotide (NaMN) by ATP to form nicotinic acid adenine dinucleotide (NaAD). This enzyme is regarded as a suitable candidate for antibacterial drug development; as such, Bacillus anthracis NaMNAT (BA NaMNAT) was heterologously expressed in Escherichia coli for the purpose of inhibitor discovery and crystallography. The crystal structure of BA NaMNAT was determined by molecular replacement, revealing two dimers per asymmetric unit, and was refined to an R factor and R{sub free} of 0.228 and 0.263, respectively, at 2.3 {angstrom} resolution. The structure is very similar to that of B. subtilis NaMNAT (BS NaMNAT), which is also a dimer, and another independently solved structure of BA NaMNAT recently released from the PDB along with two ligated forms. Comparison of these and other less related bacterial NaMNAT structures support the presence of considerable conformational heterogeneity and flexibility in three loops surrounding the substrate-binding area.

  10. Structure of nicotinic acid mononucleotide adenylyltransferase from Bacillus anthracis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lu, Shanyun; Smith, Craig D.; Yang, Zhengrong; Pruett, Pamela S.; Nagy, Lisa; McCombs, Deborah; DeLucas, Lawrence J.; Brouillette, Wayne J.; Brouillette, Christie G.

    2008-01-01

    Nicotinic acid mononucleotide adenylyltransferase (NaMNAT; EC 2.7.7.18) is the penultimate enzyme in the biosynthesis of NAD+ and catalyzes the adenylation of nicotinic acid mononucleotide (NaMN) by ATP to form nicotinic acid adenine dinucleotide (NaAD). This enzyme is regarded as a suitable candidate for antibacterial drug development; as such, Bacillus anthracis NaMNAT (BA NaMNAT) was heterologously expressed in Escherichia coli for the purpose of inhibitor discovery and crystallography. The crystal structure of BA NaMNAT was determined by molecular replacement, revealing two dimers per asymmetric unit, and was refined to an R factor and R free of 0.228 and 0.263, respectively, at 2.3 Å resolution. The structure is very similar to that of B. subtilis NaMNAT (BS NaMNAT), which is also a dimer, and another independently solved structure of BA NaMNAT recently released from the PDB along with two ligated forms. Comparison of these and other less related bacterial NaMNAT structures support the presence of considerable conformational heterogeneity and flexibility in three loops surrounding the substrate-binding area. PMID:18931430

  11. Novel giant siphovirus from Bacillus anthracis features unusual genome characteristics.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Holly H Ganz

    Full Text Available Here we present vB_BanS-Tsamsa, a novel temperate phage isolated from Bacillus anthracis, the agent responsible for anthrax infections in wildlife, livestock and humans. Tsamsa phage is a giant siphovirus (order Caudovirales, featuring a long, flexible and non-contractile tail of 440 nm (not including baseplate structure and an isometric head of 82 nm in diameter. We induced Tsamsa phage in samples from two different carcass sites in Etosha National Park, Namibia. The Tsamsa phage genome is the largest sequenced Bacillus siphovirus, containing 168,876 bp and 272 ORFs. The genome features an integrase/recombinase enzyme, indicative of a temperate lifestyle. Among bacterial strains tested, the phage infected only certain members of the Bacillus cereus sensu lato group (B. anthracis, B. cereus and B. thuringiensis and exhibited moderate specificity for B. anthracis. Tsamsa lysed seven out of 25 B. cereus strains, two out of five B. thuringiensis strains and six out of seven B. anthracis strains tested. It did not lyse B. anthracis PAK-1, an atypical strain that is also resistant to both gamma phage and cherry phage. The Tsamsa endolysin features a broader lytic spectrum than the phage host range, indicating possible use of the enzyme in Bacillus biocontrol.

  12. Fragmentation and lethality

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    V. R. Thiruvenkatachar

    1958-04-01

    Full Text Available "The lethality of a H.E. shell or bomb depends on its ability to produce high velocity fragments and blast. The relative importance of these two damaging agents depends on the nature of the targets it is proposed to destroy. Small, high-velocity fragments are effective for the attack of personnel in the open, but aircraft targets require larger fragments. The blast effect from shell-burst inside aircraft wings does considerable damage, but blast is of relatively little importance against heavily armoured targets such as tanks. Fragment effect ceases to be of primary importance here and if the HE shell is to be lethal to such targets it must carry a very large charge of explosive, which will either ""scab"" the armour or do extensive structural damage by blast and shock. For assessing the effectiveness of a fragmenting shell or bomb against a given type of target, we have to take into account different characteristics of ammunition and target. The solution of the problem of lethality of ammunition will involve a determination of fragmentation in regard to total number of a design with a specific level of lethality in a given situation, it will be necessary to predict the performance for given design data, a process which demands a theoretical treatment if possible, or at least a sufficient quantity of experimental data which can yield reliable empirical formulae. In this paper an account is given of the various theoretical and empirical aspects and a discussion of these with reference to certain special cases. "

  13. Lethal Mutagenesis of Bacteria

    OpenAIRE

    Bull, James J; Wilke, Claus O.

    2008-01-01

    Lethal mutagenesis, the killing of a microbial pathogen with a chemical mutagen, is a potential broad-spectrum antiviral treatment. It operates by raising the genomic mutation rate to the point that the deleterious load causes the population to decline. Its use has been limited to RNA viruses because of their high intrinsic mutation rates. Microbes with DNA genomes, which include many viruses and bacteria, have not been considered for this type of treatment because their low intrinsic mutatio...

  14. Bacillus anthracis secretes proteins that mediate heme acquisition from hemoglobin.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anthony W Maresso

    Full Text Available Acquisition of iron is necessary for the replication of nearly all bacterial pathogens; however, iron of vertebrate hosts is mostly sequestered by heme and bound to hemoglobin within red blood cells. In Bacillus anthracis, the spore-forming agent of anthrax, the mechanisms of iron scavenging from hemoglobin are unknown. We report here that B. anthracis secretes IsdX1 and IsdX2, two NEAT domain proteins, to remove heme from hemoglobin, thereby retrieving iron for bacterial growth. Unlike other Gram-positive bacteria, which rely on cell wall anchored Isd proteins for heme scavenging, B. anthracis seems to have also evolved NEAT domain proteins in the extracellular milieu and in the bacterial envelope to provide for the passage of heme.

  15. Anthrax protective antigen delivered by Salmonella enterica serovar Typhi Ty21a protects mice from a lethal anthrax spore challenge.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Osorio, Manuel; Wu, Yanping; Singh, Sunil; Merkel, Tod J; Bhattacharyya, Siba; Blake, Milan S; Kopecko, Dennis J

    2009-04-01

    Bacillus anthracis, the etiological agent of anthrax disease, is a proven weapon of bioterrorism. Currently, the only licensed vaccine against anthrax in the United States is AVA Biothrax, which, although efficacious, suffers from several limitations. This vaccine requires six injectable doses over 18 months to stimulate protective immunity, requires a cold chain for storage, and in many cases has been associated with adverse effects. In this study, we modified the B. anthracis protective antigen (PA) gene for optimal expression and stability, linked it to an inducible promoter for maximal expression in the host, and fused it to the secretion signal of the Escherichia coli alpha-hemolysin protein (HlyA) on a low-copy-number plasmid. This plasmid was introduced into the licensed typhoid vaccine strain, Salmonella enterica serovar Typhi strain Ty21a, and was found to be genetically stable. Immunization of mice with three vaccine doses elicited a strong PA-specific serum immunoglobulin G response with a geometric mean titer of 30,000 (range, 5,800 to 157,000) and lethal-toxin-neutralizing titers greater than 16,000. Vaccinated mice demonstrated 100% protection against a lethal intranasal challenge with aerosolized spores of B. anthracis 7702. The ultimate goal is a temperature-stable, safe, oral human vaccine against anthrax infection that can be self-administered in a few doses over a short period of time. PMID:19179420

  16. Secretion Genes as Determinants of Bacillus anthracis Chain Length

    OpenAIRE

    Nguyen-Mau, Sao-Mai; Oh, So-Young; Kern, Valerie J.; Missiakas, Dominique M.; Schneewind, Olaf

    2012-01-01

    Bacillus anthracis grows in chains of rod-shaped cells, a trait that contributes to its escape from phagocytic clearance in host tissues. Using a genetic approach to search for determinants of B. anthracis chain length, we identified mutants with insertional lesions in secA2. All isolated secA2 mutants exhibited an exaggerated chain length, whereas the dimensions of individual cells were not changed. Complementation studies revealed that slaP (S-layer assembly protein), a gene immediately dow...

  17. Radiation-induced mouse chimeras: a cellular analysis of the major lymphoid compartments, factors affecting lethal graft versus host disease and host-tumor interactions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The major lymphoid compartments of allogeneic bone marrow chimeras were evaluated for the extent of cell chimerism and distribution of Thy 1 and la bearing cells. These chimeras contained lymphoid cell primarily of donor origin. The bone marrow compartment was a mixture of host and donor origin cells. The distribution of Thy 1 and la bearing cells was similar as in normal mice. The effect of adult thymectomy alone or followed by whole-body irradiation and bone marrow reconstitution on the distribution of the Thy 1 positive cells was also investigated. Thymectomy with or without WBI and bone marrow reconstitution significantly lowered the number of Thy 1 bearing cells in the blood and spleen. The number of la bearing cells did not appear to be affected by thymectomy. The role of circulating lymphoid cells in the incidence of lethal graft versus host disease (GVHD) in radiation induced fully allogeneic mouse chimeras was studied. Mice reconstituted with allogeneic bone marrow from bled donors had a statistically lower incidence of GVHD than those reconstituted with bone marrow from unbled donors. Addition of mature peripheral lymphocytes from blood to the reconstituting bone marrow cells from bled donors reduplicated the high incidence of lethal GVHD. It was demonstrated that the bone marrow of mice not exsanguinated prior to harvesting of bone marrow contained significant numbers of peripheral contaminating cells in the harvested bone marrow. The role of suppressor cell elimination in resisting tumor growth was investigated using radiation induced mouse chimeras. Local effects of irradiation alone at the site of tumor inoculation could account for this lack of growth

  18. The central nervous system as target of Bacillus anthracis toxin independent virulence in rabbits and guinea pigs.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Haim Levy

    Full Text Available Infection of the central nervous system is considered a complication of Anthrax and was reported in humans and non-human primates. Previously we have reported that Bacillus anthracis possesses a toxin-independent virulent trait that, like the toxins, is regulated by the major virulence regulator, AtxA, in the presence of pXO2. This toxin-independent lethal trait is exhibited in rabbits and Guinea pigs following significant bacteremia and organ dissemination. Various findings, including meningitis seen in humans and primates, suggested that the CNS is a possible target for this AtxA-mediated activity. In order to penetrate into the brain tissue, the bacteria have to overcome the barriers isolating the CNS from the blood stream. Taking a systematic genetic approach, we compared intracranial (IC inoculation and IV/SC inoculation for the outcome of the infection in rabbits/GP, respectively. The outstanding difference between the two models is exhibited by the encapsulated strain VollumΔpXO1, which is lethal when injected IC, but asymptomatic when inoculated IV/SC. The findings demonstrate that there is an apparent bottleneck in the ability of mutants to penetrate into the brain. Any mutant carrying either pXO1 or pXO2 will kill the host upon IC injection, but only those carrying AtxA either on pXO1 or in the chromosome in the background of pXO2 can penetrate into the brain following peripheral inoculation. The findings were corroborated by histological examination by H&E staining and immunofluorescence of rabbits' brains following IV and IC inoculations. These findings may have major implications on future research both on B. anthracis pathogenicity and on vaccine development.

  19. Comparative analysis of the immunologic response induced by the Sterne 34F2 live spore Bacillus anthracis vaccine in a ruminant model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ndumnego, Okechukwu C; Köhler, Susanne M; Crafford, Jannie; van Heerden, Henriette; Beyer, Wolfgang

    2016-10-01

    The Sterne 34F2 live spore vaccine (SLSV) developed in 1937 is the most widely used veterinary vaccine against anthrax. However, literature on the immunogenicity of this vaccine in a target ruminant host is scarce. In this study, we evaluated the humoral response to the Bacillus anthracis protective antigen (rPA), a recombinant bacillus collagen-like protein of anthracis (rBclA), formaldehyde inactivated spores (FIS) prepared from strain 34F2 and a vegetative antigen formulation prepared from a capsule and toxin deficient strain (CDC 1014) in Boer goats. The toxin neutralizing ability of induced antibodies was evaluated using an in vitro toxin neutralization assay. The protection afforded by the vaccine was also assessed in vaccinates. Anti-rPA, anti-FIS and lethal toxin neutralizing titres were superior after booster vaccinations, compared to single vaccinations. Qualitative analysis of humoral responses to rPA, rBclA and FIS antigens revealed a preponderance of anti-FIS IgG titres following either single or double vaccinations with the SLSV. Antibodies against FIS and rPA both increased by 350 and 300-fold following revaccinations respectively. There was no response to rBclA following vaccinations with the SLSV. Toxin neutralizing titres increased by 80-fold after single vaccination and 700-fold following a double vaccination. Lethal challenge studies in naïve goats indicated a minimum infective dose of 36 B. anthracis spores. Single and double vaccination with the SLSV protected 4/5 and 3/3 of goats challenged with>800 spores respectively. An early booster vaccination following the first immunization is suggested in order to achieve a robust immunity. Results from this study indicate that this crucial second vaccination can be administered as early as 3 months after the initial vaccination. PMID:27496738

  20. The Lethality Test System

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parsons, W. M.; Sims, J. R.; Parker, J. V.

    1986-11-01

    The Lethality Test System (LTS) under construction at Los Alamos is an electromagnetic launcher facility designed to perform impact experiments at velocities up to 15 km/sec. The launcher is a 25 mm round bore, plasma armature railgun 22 m in length. Preinjection is accomplished with a two-stage light gas gun capable of 7 km/sec. The railgun power supply utilizes traction motors, vacuum interrupters, and pulse transformers. An assembly of 28 traction motors, equipped with flywheels, stores approximately 80 MJ at 92 percent of full speed and energizes the primary windings of three pulse transformers at a current of 50 kA. At peak current an array of vacuum interrupters disconnects the transformer primary windings and forces the current to flow in the secondary windings. The secondary windings are connected to the railgun, and by staging the vacuum interrupter openings, a 1-1.3 MA ramped current waveform will be delivered to the railgun.

  1. Anthrax lethal toxin suppresses murine cardiomyocyte contractile function and intracellular Ca2+ handling via a NADPH oxidase-dependent mechanism.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Machender R Kandadi

    Full Text Available OBJECTIVES: Anthrax infection is associated with devastating cardiovascular sequelae, suggesting unfavorable cardiovascular effects of toxins originated from Bacillus anthracis namely lethal and edema toxins. This study was designed to examine the direct effect of lethal toxins on cardiomyocyte contractile and intracellular Ca(2+ properties. METHODS: Murine cardiomyocyte contractile function and intracellular Ca(2+ handling were evaluated including peak shortening (PS, maximal velocity of shortening/ relengthening (± dL/dt, time-to-PS (TPS, time-to-90% relengthening (TR(90, intracellular Ca(2+ rise measured as fura-2 fluorescent intensity (ΔFFI, and intracellular Ca(2+ decay rate. Stress signaling and Ca(2+ regulatory proteins were assessed using Western blot analysis. RESULTS: In vitro exposure to a lethal toxin (0.05-50 nM elicited a concentration-dependent depression on cardiomyocyte contractile and intracellular Ca(2+ properties (PS, ± dL/dt, ΔFFI, along with prolonged duration of contraction and intracellular Ca(2+ decay, the effects of which were nullified by the NADPH oxidase inhibitor apocynin. The lethal toxin significantly enhanced superoxide production and cell death, which were reversed by apocynin. In vivo lethal toxin exposure exerted similar time-dependent cardiomyocyte mechanical and intracellular Ca(2+ responses. Stress signaling cascades including MEK1/2, p38, ERK and JNK were unaffected by in vitro lethal toxins whereas they were significantly altered by in vivo lethal toxins. Ca(2+ regulatory proteins SERCA2a and phospholamban were also differentially regulated by in vitro and in vivo lethal toxins. Autophagy was drastically triggered although ER stress was minimally affected following lethal toxin exposure. CONCLUSIONS: Our findings indicate that lethal toxins directly compromised murine cardiomyocyte contractile function and intracellular Ca(2+ through a NADPH oxidase-dependent mechanism.

  2. Bacillus anthracis Co-Opts Nitric Oxide and Host Serum Albumin for Pathogenicity in Hypoxic Conditions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stephen eSt John

    2013-05-01

    Full Text Available Bacillus anthracis is a dangerous pathogen of humans and many animal species. Its virulence has been mainly attributed to the production of Lethal and Edema toxins as well as the antiphagocytic capsule. Recent data indicate that the nitric oxide (NO synthase (baNOS plays an important pathogenic role at the early stage of disease by protecting bacteria from the host reactive species and S-nytrosylating the mitochondrial proteins in macrophages. In this study we for the first time present evidence that bacteria-derived NO participates in the generation of highly reactive oxidizing species which could be abolished by the NOS inhibitor L-NAME, free thiols, and superoxide dismutase but not catalase. The formation of toxicants is likely a result of the simultaneous formation of NO and superoxide leading to a labile peroxynitrite and its stable decomposition product, nitrogen dioxide. The toxicity of bacteria could be potentiated in the presence of bovine serum albumin. This effect is consistent with the property of serum albumin to serves as a trap of a volatile NO accelerating its reactions. Our data suggest that during infection in the hypoxic environment of pre-mortal host the accumulated NO is expected to have a broad toxic impact on host cell functions.

  3. The Saccharomyces boulardii CNCM I-745 Strain Shows Protective Effects against the B. anthracis LT Toxin

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rodolphe Pontier-Bres

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available The probiotic yeast Saccharomyces boulardii (S. boulardii has been prescribed for the prophylaxis and treatment of several infectious diarrheal diseases. Gastrointestinal anthrax causes fatal systemic disease. In the present study, we investigated the protective effects conferred by Saccharomyces boulardii CNCM I-745 strain on polarized T84 columnar epithelial cells intoxicated by the lethal toxin (LT of Bacillus anthracis. Exposure of polarized T84 cells to LT affected cell monolayer integrity, modified the morphology of tight junctions and induced the formation of actin stress fibers. Overnight treatment of cells with S. boulardii before incubation with LT maintained the integrity of the monolayers, prevented morphological modification of tight junctions, restricted the effects of LT on actin remodeling and delayed LT-induced MEK-2 cleavage. Mechanistically, we demonstrated that in the presence of S. boulardii, the medium is depleted of both LF and PA sub-units of LT and the appearance of a cleaved form of PA. Our study highlights the potential of the S. boulardii CNCM I-745 strain as a prophylactic agent against the gastrointestinal form of anthrax.

  4. Killed but Metabolically Active Bacillus anthracis Vaccines Induce Broad and Protective Immunity against Anthrax▿

    OpenAIRE

    Skoble, Justin; Beaber, John W.; Gao, Yi; Lovchik, Julie A.; Sower, Laurie E.; Liu, Weiqun; Luckett, William; Johnny W. Peterson; Calendar, Richard; Daniel A Portnoy; Lyons, C. Rick; Dubensky, Thomas W

    2009-01-01

    Bacillus anthracis is the causative agent of anthrax. We have developed a novel whole-bacterial-cell anthrax vaccine utilizing B. anthracis that is killed but metabolically active (KBMA). Vaccine strains that are asporogenic and nucleotide excision repair deficient were engineered by deleting the spoIIE and uvrAB genes, rendering B. anthracis extremely sensitive to photochemical inactivation with S-59 psoralen and UV light. We also introduced point mutations into the lef and cya genes, which ...

  5. Detection of Bacillus anthracis in the air, soil and animal tissue

    OpenAIRE

    Kušar D.; Pate M.; Hubad B.; Avberšek J.; Logar K.; Lapanje A.; Zrimec A.; Ocepek M.

    2012-01-01

    The objective of the present work was to establish effective and rapid diagnostic methods for the detection of Bacillus anthracis, a highly virulent zoonotic pathogen, in the air, soil and animal (or human) tissue samples. Liquid culture of B. anthracis was aerosolized and four air sampling procedures were employed. Detection of B. anthracis in the air samples was successful with RCS High Flow sampler (culturebased detection) and when sampling through the a...

  6. Bacillus anthracis HssRS signaling to HrtAB regulates heme resistance during infection

    OpenAIRE

    Stauff, Devin L; Skaar, Eric P.

    2009-01-01

    Bacillus anthracis proliferates to high levels within vertebrate tissues during the pathogenesis of anthrax. This growth is facilitated by the acquisition of nutrient iron from host heme. However, heme acquisition can lead to the accumulation of toxic amounts of heme within B. anthracis. Here, we show that B. anthracis resists heme toxicity by sensing heme through the HssRS two-component system, which regulates expression of the heme-detoxifying transporter HrtAB. In addition, we demonstrate ...

  7. Identifying experimental surrogates for Bacillus anthracis spores: a review

    OpenAIRE

    Greenberg David L; Busch Joseph D; Keim Paul; Wagner David M

    2010-01-01

    Abstract Bacillus anthracis, the causative agent of anthrax, is a proven biological weapon. In order to study this threat, a number of experimental surrogates have been used over the past 70 years. However, not all surrogates are appropriate for B. anthracis, especially when investigating transport, fate and survival. Although B. atrophaeus has been widely used as a B. anthracis surrogate, the two species do not always behave identically in transport and survival models. Therefore, we devised...

  8. Differentiation between spores of Bacillus anthracis and Bacillus cereus by a quantitative immunofluorescence technique.

    OpenAIRE

    Phillips, A. P.; Martin, K L; Broster, M G

    1983-01-01

    A quantitative immunofluorescence assay based on fiber optic microscopy was used to measure the reaction of formalized spores of Bacillus anthracis and Bacillus cereus isolates with fluorescein conjugates prepared by hyperimmunization with B. anthracis Vollum spores. The spores of 11 of the 20 B. cereus strains reacted with the anti-anthrax conjugate to such an extent that they were indistinguishable from the spores of the several B. anthracis isolates tested. However, absorption of the conju...

  9. Historical distribution and molecular diversity of Bacillus anthracis, Kazakhstan.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aikembayev, Alim M; Lukhnova, Larissa; Temiraliyeva, Gulnara; Meka-Mechenko, Tatyana; Pazylov, Yerlan; Zakaryan, Sarkis; Denissov, Georgiy; Easterday, W Ryan; Van Ert, Matthew N; Keim, Paul; Francesconi, Stephen C; Blackburn, Jason K; Hugh-Jones, Martin; Hadfield, Ted

    2010-05-01

    To map the distribution of anthrax outbreaks and strain subtypes in Kazakhstan during 1937-2005, we combined geographic information system technology and genetic analysis by using archived cultures and data. Biochemical and genetic tests confirmed the identity of 93 archived cultures in the Kazakhstan National Culture Collection as Bacillus anthracis. Multilocus variable number tandem repeat analysis genotyping identified 12 genotypes. Cluster analysis comparing these genotypes with previously published genotypes indicated that most (n = 78) isolates belonged to the previously described A1.a genetic cluster, 6 isolates belonged to the A3.b cluster, and 2 belonged to the A4 cluster. Two genotypes in the collection appeared to represent novel genetic sublineages; 1 of these isolates was from Krygystan. Our data provide a description of the historical, geographic, and genetic diversity of B. anthracis in this Central Asian region. PMID:20409368

  10. Bacillus anthracis infections – new possibilities of treatment

    OpenAIRE

    Dorota Żakowska; Michał Bartoszcze; Marcin Niemcewicz; Agata Bielawska-Drózd; Józef Knap; Piotr Cieślik; Krzysztof Chomiczewski; Janusz Kocik

    2015-01-01

    [b]Introduction and objective[/b]. [i]Bacillus anthracis[/i] is one of biological agents which may be used in bioterrorism attacks. The aim of this study a review of the new treatment possibilities of anthrax, with particular emphasis on the treatment of pulmonary anthrax. [b]Abbreviated description of the state of knowledge[/b]. Pulmonary anthrax, as the most dangerous clinical form of the disease, is also extremely difficult to treat. Recently, considerable progress in finding new dru...

  11. Genotype Analysis of Bacillus anthracis Strains Circulating in Bangladesh.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rume, Farzana Islam; Affuso, Alessia; Serrecchia, Luigina; Rondinone, Valeria; Manzulli, Viviana; Campese, Emanuele; Di Taranto, Pietro; Biswas, Paritosh Kumar; Ahsan, Chowdhury Rafiqul; Yasmin, Mahmuda; Fasanella, Antonio; Hugh-Jones, Martin

    2016-01-01

    In Bangladesh, anthrax, caused by the bacterium Bacillus anthracis, is considered an endemic disease affecting ruminants with sporadic zoonotic occurrences in humans. Due to the lack of knowledge about risks from an incorrect removal of infected carcasses, the disease is not properly monitored, and because of the socio-economic conditions, the situation is under-reported and under-diagnosed. For sensitive species, anthrax represents a fatal outcome with sudden death and sometimes bleeding from natural orifices. The most common source of infection for ruminants is ingestion of spores during grazing in contaminated pastures or through grass and water contaminated with anthrax spores. Domestic cattle, sheep and goats can also become infected through contaminated bone meal (used as feed) originating from anthrax-infected carcasses. The present investigation was conducted to isolate B. anthracis organisms from 169 samples (73 soil, 1 tissue, 4 bone and 91 bone meal samples) collected from 12 different districts of Bangladesh. The sampling was carried out from 2012 to 2015. Twelve samples resulted positive for B. anthracis. Biomolecular analyses were conducted starting from the Canonical Single Nucleotide Polymorphism (CanSNP) to analyze the phylogenetic origin of strains. The analysis of genotype, obtained through the Multiple Locus Variable Number Tandem Repeat Analysis (MLVA) with the analysis of 15 Variable Number Tandem Repeats (VNTR), demonstrated four different genotypes: two of them were previously identified in the district of Sirajganj. The sub-genotyping, conducted with Single Nucleotide Repeats analysis, revealed the presence of eight subgenotypes. The data of the present study concluded that there was no observed correlation between imported cattle feed and anthrax occurrence in Bangladesh and that the remarkable genetic variations of B. anthracis were found in the soil of numerous outbreaks in this country. PMID:27082248

  12. Cytokine Response to Infection with Bacillus anthracis Spores

    OpenAIRE

    Pickering, Alison K.; Osorio, Manuel; Lee, Gloria M.; Grippe, Vanessa K.; Bray, Mechelle; Merkel, Tod J.

    2004-01-01

    Bacillus anthracis, the etiological agent of anthrax, is a gram-positive, spore-forming bacterium. The inhalational form of anthrax is the most severe and is associated with rapid progression of the disease and the outcome is frequently fatal. Transfer from the respiratory epithelium to regional lymph nodes appears to be an essential early step in the establishment of infection. This transfer is believed to occur by means of carriage within alveolar macrophages following phagocytosis. Therefo...

  13. Historical Distribution and Molecular Diversity of Bacillus anthracis, Kazakhstan

    OpenAIRE

    Aikembayev, Alim M.; Lukhnova, Larissa; Temiraliyeva, Gulnara; Meka-Mechenko, Tatyana; Pazylov, Yerlan; Zakaryan, Sarkis; Denissov, Georgiy; Easterday, W. Ryan; Matthew N. Van Ert; Keim, Paul; Francesconi, Stephen C.; Jason K Blackburn; Hugh-Jones, Martin; Hadfield, Ted

    2010-01-01

    To map the distribution of anthrax outbreaks and strain subtypes in Kazakhstan during 1937–2005, we combined geographic information system technology and genetic analysis by using archived cultures and data. Biochemical and genetic tests confirmed the identity of 93 archived cultures in the Kazakhstan National Culture Collection as Bacillus anthracis. Multilocus variable number tandem repeat analysis genotyping identified 12 genotypes. Cluster analysis comparing these genotypes with previousl...

  14. The Bacillus anthracis Exosporium: What's the Big "Hairy" Deal?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bozue, Joel A; Welkos, Susan; Cote, Christopher K

    2015-10-01

    In some Bacillus species, including Bacillus subtilis, the coat is the outermost layer of the spore. In others, such as the Bacillus cereus family, there is an additional layer that envelops the coat, called the exosporium. In the case of Bacillus anthracis, a series of fine hair-like projections, also referred to as a "hairy" nap, extends from the exosporium basal layer. The exact role of the exosporium in B. anthracis, or for any of the Bacillus species possessing this structure, remains unclear. However, it has been assumed that the exosporium would play some role in infection for B. anthracis, because it is the outermost structure of the spore and would make initial contact with host and immune cells during infection. Therefore, the exosporium has been a topic of great interest, and over the past decade much progress has been made to understand its composition, biosynthesis, and potential roles. Several key aspects of this spore structure, however, are still debated and remain undetermined. Although insights have been gained on the interaction of exosporium with the host during infection, the exact role and significance of this complex structure remain to be determined. Furthermore, because the exosporium is a highly antigenic structure, future strategies for the next-generation anthrax vaccine should pursue its inclusion as a component to provide protection against the spore itself during the initial stages of anthrax. PMID:26542035

  15. Multigeneration Cross-Contamination of Mail with Bacillus anthracis Spores.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jason Edmonds

    Full Text Available The release of biological agents, including those which could be used in biowarfare or bioterrorism in large urban areas, has been a concern for governments for nearly three decades. Previous incidents from Sverdlosk and the postal anthrax attack of 2001 have raised questions on the mechanism of spread of Bacillus anthracis spores as an aerosol or contaminant. Prior studies have demonstrated that Bacillus atrophaeus is easily transferred through simulated mail handing, but no reports have demonstrated this ability with Bacillus anthracis spores, which have morphological differences that may affect adhesion properties between spore and formite. In this study, equipment developed to simulate interactions across three generations of envelopes subjected to tumbling and mixing was used to evaluate the potential for cross-contamination of B. anthracis spores in simulated mail handling. In these experiments, we found that the potential for cross-contamination through letter tumbling from one generation to the next varied between generations while the presence of a fluidizer had no statistical impact on the transfer of material. Likewise, the presence or absence of a fluidizer had no statistically significant impact on cross-contamination levels or reaerosolization from letter opening.

  16. Molecular characterization of the circulating Bacillus anthracis in Jordan.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aqel, Amin Abdelfattah; Hailat, Ekhlas; Serrecchia, Luigina; Aqel, Suad; Campese, Emanuele; Vicari, Nadia; Fasanella, Antonio

    2015-12-01

    To understand the biomolecular charcteristics of Bacillus anthracis in Jordan, 20 blood smear slides from dead animals with suspected anthrax were analyzed using conventional and molecular approaches. All slides were positive for B. anthracis by conventional staining but no growth of the organism on selective media was detected. However, of the 20 samples, 16 were B. anthracis DNA-positive using polymerase chain reaction (PCR). Seven samples provided enough quantity and quality of DNA, and their multilocus variable tandem repeat analysis (MLVA)-15 loci analysis revealed two different genotypes. All genotypes were belonging to A.B..r. 008/009 which is very common in Asia and Europe. Single nucleotide repeat (SNR) analysis revealed that there were no sub genotypes. Molecular diagnosis of animal anthrax in Jordan is not used routinely; henceforth, official diagnosis of anthrax is based on the observation of the slides by optical microscope and this can often cause reading errors. Therefore, the prevalence of the disease in Jordan might be slightly lower than that reported by the official bodies. PMID:26156620

  17. Multigeneration Cross-Contamination of Mail with Bacillus anthracis Spores.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Edmonds, Jason; Lindquist, H D Alan; Sabol, Jonathan; Martinez, Kenneth; Shadomy, Sean; Cymet, Tyler; Emanuel, Peter

    2016-01-01

    The release of biological agents, including those which could be used in biowarfare or bioterrorism in large urban areas, has been a concern for governments for nearly three decades. Previous incidents from Sverdlosk and the postal anthrax attack of 2001 have raised questions on the mechanism of spread of Bacillus anthracis spores as an aerosol or contaminant. Prior studies have demonstrated that Bacillus atrophaeus is easily transferred through simulated mail handing, but no reports have demonstrated this ability with Bacillus anthracis spores, which have morphological differences that may affect adhesion properties between spore and formite. In this study, equipment developed to simulate interactions across three generations of envelopes subjected to tumbling and mixing was used to evaluate the potential for cross-contamination of B. anthracis spores in simulated mail handling. In these experiments, we found that the potential for cross-contamination through letter tumbling from one generation to the next varied between generations while the presence of a fluidizer had no statistical impact on the transfer of material. Likewise, the presence or absence of a fluidizer had no statistically significant impact on cross-contamination levels or reaerosolization from letter opening. PMID:27123934

  18. Cardiac-specific catalase overexpression rescues anthrax lethal toxin-induced cardiac contractile dysfunction: role of oxidative stress and autophagy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kandadi Machender R

    2012-11-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Lethal and edema toxins secreted by Bacillus anthracis during anthrax infection were found to incite serious cardiovascular complications. However, the underlying mechanisms in anthrax lethal toxin-induced cardiac anomalies remain unknown. This study was designed to evaluate the impact of antioxidant enzyme catalase in anthrax lethal toxin-induced cardiomyocyte contractile dysfunction. Methods Wild type (WT and cardiac-specific catalase overexpression mice were challenged with lethal toxin (2 μg/g, intraperotineally (i.p.. Cardiomyocyte contractile and intracellular Ca2+ properties were assessed 18 h later using an IonOptix edge-detection system. Proteasome function was assessed using chymotrypsin-like and caspase-like activities. GFP-LC3 puncta and Western blot analysis were used to evaluate autophagy and protein ubiquitination. Results Lethal toxin exposure suppressed cardiomyocyte contractile function (suppressed peak shortening, maximal velocity of shortening/re-lengthening, prolonged duration of shortening/re-lengthening, and impaired intracellular Ca2+ handling, the effects of which were alleviated by catalase. In addition, lethal toxin triggered autophagy, mitochondrial and ubiquitin-proteasome defects, the effects of which were mitigated by catalase. Pretreatment of cardiomyocytes from catalase mice with the autophagy inducer rapamycin significantly attenuated or ablated catalase-offered protection against lethal toxin-induced cardiomyocyte dysfunction. On the other hand, the autophagy inhibitor 3-MA ablated or significantly attenuated lethal toxin-induced cardiomyocyte contractile anomalies. Conclusions Our results suggest that catalase is protective against anthrax lethal toxin-induced cardiomyocyte contractile and intracellular Ca2+ anomalies, possibly through regulation of autophagy and mitochondrial function.

  19. Development of a Rapid and Sensitive Immunoassay for Detection and Subsequent Recovery of Bacillus anthracis Spores in Environmental Samples

    OpenAIRE

    Hang, Jun; Sundaram, Appavu K.; Zhu, Peixuan; Shelton, Daniel R.; Karns, Jeffrey S.; Martin, Phyllis A. W.; Li, Shuhong; Amstutz, Platte; Tang, Cha-Mei

    2008-01-01

    Bacillusanthracis is considered a major threat as an agent of bioterrorism. B. anthracis spores are readily dispersed as aerosols, are very persistent, and are resistant to normal disinfection treatments. Immunoassays have been developed to rapidly detect B. anthracis spores at high concentrations. However, detection of B. anthracis spores at lower concentrations is problematic due to the fact that closely related Bacillus species (e.g., B. thuringiensis) can cross react with anti-B. anthraci...

  20. Inactivation of Spores of Bacillus anthracis Sterne, Bacillus cereus, and Bacillus thuringiensis subsp. israelensis by Chlorination

    OpenAIRE

    Rice, E W; Adcock, N. J.; Sivaganesan, M; Rose, L. J.

    2005-01-01

    Three species of Bacillus were evaluated as potential surrogates for Bacillus anthracis for determining the sporicidal activity of chlorination as commonly used in drinking water treatment. Spores of Bacillus thuringiensis subsp. israelensis were found to be an appropriate surrogate for spores of B. anthracis for use in chlorine inactivation studies.

  1. A single-dose PLGA encapsulated protective antigen domain 4 nanoformulation protects mice against Bacillus anthracis spore challenge.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Manish Manish

    Full Text Available Bacillus anthracis, the etiological agent of anthrax, is a major bioterror agent. Vaccination is the most effective prophylactic measure available against anthrax. Currently available anthrax vaccines have issues of the multiple booster dose requirement, adjuvant-associated side effects and stability. Use of biocompatible and biodegradable nanoparticles to deliver the antigens to immune cells could solve the issues associated with anthrax vaccines. We hypothesized that the delivery of a stable immunogenic domain 4 of protective antigen (PAD4 of Bacillus anthracis encapsulated in a poly (lactide-co-glycolide (PLGA--an FDA approved biocompatible and biodegradable material, may alleviate the problems of booster dose, adjuvant toxicity and stability associated with anthrax vaccines. We made a PLGA based protective antigen domain 4 nanoparticle (PAD4-NP formulation using water/oil/water solvent evaporation method. Nanoparticles were characterized for antigen content, morphology, size, polydispersity and zeta potential. The immune correlates and protective efficacy of the nanoparticle formulation was evaluated in Swiss Webster outbred mice. Mice were immunized with single dose of PAD4-NP or recombinant PAD4. The PAD4-NP elicited a robust IgG response with mixed IgG1 and IgG2a subtypes, whereas the control PAD4 immunized mice elicited low IgG response with predominant IgG1 subtype. The PAD4-NP generated mixed Th1/Th2 response, whereas PAD4 elicited predominantly Th2 response. When we compared the efficacy of this single-dose vaccine nanoformulation PAD4-NP with that of the recombinant PAD4 in providing protective immunity against a lethal challenge with Bacillus anthracis spores, the median survival of PAD4-NP immunized mice was 6 days as compared to 1 day for PAD4 immunized mice (p<0.001. Thus, we demonstrate, for the first time, the possibility of the development of a single-dose and adjuvant-free protective antigen based anthrax vaccine in the form

  2. Dietary omega-3 fatty acids attenuate myocardial arrhythmogenic factors and propensity of the heart to lethal arrhythmias in a rodent model of human essential hypertension

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Radošinská, J.; Bačová, B.; Knezl, V.; Beňová, T.; Žurmanová, J.; Soukup, Tomáš; Arnoštová, P.; Slezák, J.; Goncalvesová, E.; Tribulová, N.

    2013-01-01

    Roč. 31, č. 9 (2013), s. 1876-1885. ISSN 0263-6352 R&D Projects: GA ČR(CZ) GA304/08/0256; GA MŠk(CZ) 7AMB12SK158 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z50110509 Institutional support: RVO:67985823 Keywords : hypertension * omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids * ventricular fibrillation * sinus rhythm restoration * myocardial connexin-43 * protein kinase C * myosin heavy chain Subject RIV: EA - Cell Biology Impact factor: 4.222, year: 2013

  3. Cloning and Expression of Fusion Genes of Domain A-1 Protective Antigen of Bacillus Anthracis and Shigella Enterotoxin B Subunit (Stxb In E. Coil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    AH ahmadi

    2015-02-01

    Conclusion: The findings of the current study revealed that this antigen can be raised as an anti-cancer and recombinant vaccine candidate against types of Shigella, Escherichia coli and Bacillus anthracis which can be due to such factors as identification of antigen(PA by antibody PA20, its apoptosis induction properties, property of immunogenicity, adjuvant and delivery of STxB protein and high expression levels of Gb3 in human cancer cells.

  4. Anthrax lethal and edema toxins in anthrax pathogenesis

    OpenAIRE

    Liu, Shihui; Moayeri, Mahtab; Leppla, Stephen H.

    2014-01-01

    The pathophysiological effects resulting from many bacterial diseases are caused by exotoxins released by the bacteria. Bacillus anthracis, a spore-forming bacterium, is such a pathogen, causing anthrax through a combination of bacterial infection and toxemia. B. anthracis causes natural infection in humans and animals and has been a top bioterrorism concern since the 2001 anthrax attacks in the USA. The exotoxins secreted by B. anthracis use CMG2 as the major toxin receptor and play essentia...

  5. Survival and Predictive Factors of Lethality in Hemodyalisis: D/I Polymorphism of The Angiotensin I-Converting Enzyme and of the Angiotensinogen M235T Genes

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    End-stage kidney disease patients continue to have markedly increased cardiovascular disease morbidity and mortality. Analysis of genetic factors connected with the renin-angiotensin system that influences the survival of the patients with end-stage kidney disease supports the ongoing search for improved outcomes. To assess survival and its association with the polymorphism of renin-angiotensin system genes: angiotensin I-converting enzyme insertion/deletion and angiotensinogen M235T in patients undergoing hemodialysis. Our study was designed to examine the role of renin-angiotensin system genes. It was an observational study. We analyzed 473 chronic hemodialysis patients in four dialysis units in the state of Rio de Janeiro. Survival rates were calculated by the Kaplan-Meier method and the differences between the curves were evaluated by Tarone-Ware, Peto-Prentice, and log rank tests. We also used logistic regression analysis and the multinomial model. A p value ≤ 0.05 was considered to be statistically significant. The local medical ethics committee gave their approval to this study. The mean age of patients was 45.8 years old. The overall survival rate was 48% at 11 years. The major causes of death were cardiovascular diseases (34%) and infections (15%). Logistic regression analysis found statistical significance for the following variables: age (p = 0.000038), TT angiotensinogen (p = 0.08261), and family income greater than five times the minimum wage (p = 0.03089), the latter being a protective factor. The survival of hemodialysis patients is likely to be influenced by the TT of the angiotensinogen M235T gene

  6. Survival and Predictive Factors of Lethality in Hemodyalisis: D/I Polymorphism of The Angiotensin I-Converting Enzyme and of the Angiotensinogen M235T Genes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mauro Alves

    2014-09-01

    Full Text Available Background: End-stage kidney disease patients continue to have markedly increased cardiovascular disease morbidity and mortality. Analysis of genetic factors connected with the renin-angiotensin system that influences the survival of the patients with end-stage kidney disease supports the ongoing search for improved outcomes. Objective: To assess survival and its association with the polymorphism of renin-angiotensin system genes: angiotensin I-converting enzyme insertion/deletion and angiotensinogen M235T in patients undergoing hemodialysis. Methods: Our study was designed to examine the role of renin-angiotensin system genes. It was an observational study. We analyzed 473 chronic hemodialysis patients in four dialysis units in the state of Rio de Janeiro. Survival rates were calculated by the Kaplan-Meier method and the differences between the curves were evaluated by Tarone-Ware, Peto-Prentice, and log rank tests. We also used logistic regression analysis and the multinomial model. A p value ≤ 0.05 was considered to be statistically significant. The local medical ethics committee gave their approval to this study. Results: The mean age of patients was 45.8 years old. The overall survival rate was 48% at 11 years. The major causes of death were cardiovascular diseases (34% and infections (15%. Logistic regression analysis found statistical significance for the following variables: age (p = 0.000038, TT angiotensinogen (p = 0.08261, and family income greater than five times the minimum wage (p = 0.03089, the latter being a protective factor. Conclusions: The survival of hemodialysis patients is likely to be influenced by the TT of the angiotensinogen M235T gene.

  7. Survival and Predictive Factors of Lethality in Hemodyalisis: D/I Polymorphism of The Angiotensin I-Converting Enzyme and of the Angiotensinogen M235T Genes

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Alves, Mauro, E-mail: malves@cardiol.br; Silva, Nelson Albuquerque de Souza e; Salis, Lucia Helena Alvares; Pereira, Basilio de Bragança; Godoy, Paulo Henrique; Nascimento, Emília Matos do [Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro, RJ (Brazil); Oliveira, Jose Mario Franco [Universidade Federal Fluminense, Niterói, RJ (Brazil)

    2014-09-15

    End-stage kidney disease patients continue to have markedly increased cardiovascular disease morbidity and mortality. Analysis of genetic factors connected with the renin-angiotensin system that influences the survival of the patients with end-stage kidney disease supports the ongoing search for improved outcomes. To assess survival and its association with the polymorphism of renin-angiotensin system genes: angiotensin I-converting enzyme insertion/deletion and angiotensinogen M235T in patients undergoing hemodialysis. Our study was designed to examine the role of renin-angiotensin system genes. It was an observational study. We analyzed 473 chronic hemodialysis patients in four dialysis units in the state of Rio de Janeiro. Survival rates were calculated by the Kaplan-Meier method and the differences between the curves were evaluated by Tarone-Ware, Peto-Prentice, and log rank tests. We also used logistic regression analysis and the multinomial model. A p value ≤ 0.05 was considered to be statistically significant. The local medical ethics committee gave their approval to this study. The mean age of patients was 45.8 years old. The overall survival rate was 48% at 11 years. The major causes of death were cardiovascular diseases (34%) and infections (15%). Logistic regression analysis found statistical significance for the following variables: age (p = 0.000038), TT angiotensinogen (p = 0.08261), and family income greater than five times the minimum wage (p = 0.03089), the latter being a protective factor. The survival of hemodialysis patients is likely to be influenced by the TT of the angiotensinogen M235T gene.

  8. Parenteral Administration of Capsule Depolymerase EnvD Prevents Lethal Inhalation Anthrax Infection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Negus, David; Vipond, Julia; Hatch, Graham J; Rayner, Emma L; Taylor, Peter W

    2015-12-01

    Left untreated, inhalation anthrax is usually fatal. Vegetative forms of Bacillus anthracis survive in blood and tissues during infection due to elaboration of a protective poly-γ-D-glutamic acid (PDGA) capsule that permits uncontrolled bacterial growth in vivo, eventually leading to overwhelming bacillosis and death. As a measure to counter threats from multidrug-resistant strains, we are evaluating the prophylactic and therapeutic potential of the PDGA depolymerase EnvD, a stable and potent enzyme which rapidly and selectively removes the capsule from the surface of vegetative cells. Repeated intravenous administration of 10 mg/kg recombinant EnvD (rEnvD) to mice infected with lethal doses of B. anthracis Ames spores by inhalation prevented the emergence of symptoms of anthrax and death; all animals survived the 5-day treatment period, and 70% survived to the end of the 14-day observation period. In contrast to results in sham-treated animals, the lungs and spleen of rEnvD-dosed animals were free of gross pathological changes. We conclude that rEnvD has potential as an agent to prevent the emergence of inhalation anthrax in infected animals and is likely to be effective against drug-resistant forms of the pathogen. PMID:26438506

  9. Loss of σI affects heat-shock response and virulence gene expression in Bacillus anthracis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Jenny Gi Yae; Wilson, Adam C

    2016-02-01

    The pathogenesis of Bacillus anthracis depends on several virulence factors, including the anthrax toxin. Loss of the alternative sigma factor σI results in a coordinate decrease in expression of all three toxin subunits. Our observations suggest that loss of σI alters the activity of the master virulence regulator AtxA, but atxA transcription is unaffected by loss of σI. σI-containing RNA polymerase does not appear to directly transcribe either atxA or the toxin gene pagA. As in Bacillus subtilis, loss of σI in B. anthracis results in increased sensitivity to heat shock and transcription of sigI, encoding σI, is induced by elevated temperature. Encoded immediately downstream of and part of a bicistronic message with sigI is an anti-sigma factor, RsgI, which controls σI activity. Loss of RsgI has no direct effect on virulence gene expression. sigI appears to be expressed from both the σI and σA promoters, and transcription from the σA promoter is likely more significant to virulence regulation. We propose a model in which σI can be induced in response to heat shock, whilst, independently, σI is produced under non-heat-shock, toxin-inducing conditions to indirectly regulate virulence gene expression. PMID:26744224

  10. Immunization with a Recombinant, Pseudomonas fluorescens-Expressed, Mutant Form of Bacillus anthracis-Derived Protective Antigen Protects Rabbits from Anthrax Infection.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Matthew D Reed

    Full Text Available Protective antigen (PA, one of the components of the anthrax toxin, is the major component of human anthrax vaccine (Biothrax. Human anthrax vaccines approved in the United States and Europe consist of an alum-adsorbed or precipitated (respectively supernatant material derived from cultures of toxigenic, non-encapsulated strains of Bacillus anthracis. Approved vaccination schedules in humans with either of these vaccines requires several booster shots and occasionally causes adverse injection site reactions. Mutant derivatives of the protective antigen that will not form the anthrax toxins have been described. We have cloned and expressed both mutant (PA SNKE167-ΔFF-315-E308D and native PA molecules recombinantly and purified them. In this study, both the mutant and native PA molecules, formulated with alum (Alhydrogel, elicited high titers of anthrax toxin neutralizing anti-PA antibodies in New Zealand White rabbits. Both mutant and native PA vaccine preparations protected rabbits from lethal, aerosolized, B. anthracis spore challenge subsequent to two immunizations at doses of less than 1 μg.

  11. A novel multiplex PCR discriminates Bacillus anthracis and its genetically related strains from other Bacillus cereus group species.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hirohito Ogawa

    Full Text Available Anthrax is an important zoonotic disease worldwide that is caused by Bacillus anthracis, a spore-forming pathogenic bacterium. A rapid and sensitive method to detect B. anthracis is important for anthrax risk management and control in animal cases to address public health issues. However, it has recently become difficult to identify B. anthracis by using previously reported molecular-based methods because of the emergence of B. cereus, which causes severe extra-intestinal infection, as well as the human pathogenic B. thuringiensis, both of which are genetically related to B. anthracis. The close genetic relation of chromosomal backgrounds has led to complexity of molecular-based diagnosis. In this study, we established a B. anthracis multiplex PCR that can screen for the presence of B. anthracis virulent plasmids and differentiate B. anthracis and its genetically related strains from other B. cereus group species. Six sets of primers targeting a chromosome of B. anthracis and B. anthracis-like strains, two virulent plasmids, pXO1 and pXO2, a bacterial gene, 16S rRNA gene, and a mammalian gene, actin-beta gene, were designed. The multiplex PCR detected approximately 3.0 CFU of B. anthracis DNA per PCR reaction and was sensitive to B. anthracis. The internal control primers also detected all bacterial and mammalian DNAs examined, indicating the practical applicability of this assay as it enables monitoring of appropriate amplification. The assay was also applied for detection of clinical strains genetically related to B. anthracis, which were B. cereus strains isolated from outbreaks of hospital infections in Japan, and field strains isolated in Zambia, and the assay differentiated B. anthracis and its genetically related strains from other B. cereus group strains. Taken together, the results indicate that the newly developed multiplex PCR is a sensitive and practical method for detecting B. anthracis.

  12. Development of an inhalational Bacillus anthracis exposure therapeutic model in cynomolgus macaques.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Henning, Lisa N; Comer, Jason E; Stark, Gregory V; Ray, Bryan D; Tordoff, Kevin P; Knostman, Katherine A B; Meister, Gabriel T

    2012-11-01

    Appropriate animal models are required to test medical countermeasures to bioterrorist threats. To that end, we characterized a nonhuman primate (NHP) inhalational anthrax therapeutic model for use in testing anthrax therapeutic medical countermeasures according to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration Animal Rule. A clinical profile was recorded for each NHP exposed to a lethal dose of Bacillus anthracis Ames spores. Specific diagnostic parameters were detected relatively early in disease progression, i.e., by blood culture (∼37 h postchallenge) and the presence of circulating protective antigen (PA) detected by electrochemiluminescence (ECL) ∼38 h postchallenge, whereas nonspecific clinical signs of disease, i.e., changes in body temperature, hematologic parameters (ca. 52 to 66 h), and clinical observations, were delayed. To determine whether the presentation of antigenemia (PA in the blood) was an appropriate trigger for therapeutic intervention, a monoclonal antibody specific for PA was administered to 12 additional animals after the circulating levels of PA were detected by ECL. Seventy-five percent of the monoclonal antibody-treated animals survived compared to 17% of the untreated controls, suggesting that intervention at the onset of antigenemia is an appropriate treatment trigger for this model. Moreover, the onset of antigenemia correlated with bacteremia, and NHPs were treated in a therapeutic manner. Interestingly, brain lesions were observed by histopathology in the treated nonsurviving animals, whereas this observation was absent from 90% of the nonsurviving untreated animals. Our results support the use of the cynomolgus macaque as an appropriate therapeutic animal model for assessing the efficacy of medical countermeasures developed against anthrax when administered after a confirmation of infection. PMID:22956657

  13. Identification of Bacillus anthracis specific chromosomal sequences by suppressive subtractive hybridization

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Redkar Rajendra

    2004-02-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Bacillus anthracis, Bacillus thuringiensis and Bacillus cereus are closely related members of the B. cereus-group of bacilli. Suppressive subtractive hybridization (SSH was used to identify specific chromosomal sequences unique to B. anthracis. Results Two SSH libraries were generated. Genomic DNA from plasmid-cured B. anthracis was used as the tester DNA in both libraries, while genomic DNA from either B. cereus or B. thuringiensis served as the driver DNA. Progressive screening of the libraries by colony filter and Southern blot analyses identified 29 different clones that were specific for the B. anthracis chromosome relative not only to the respective driver DNAs, but also to seven other different strains of B. cereus and B. thuringiensis included in the process. The nucleotide sequences of the clones were compared with those found in genomic databases, revealing that over half of the clones were located into 2 regions on the B. anthracis chromosome. Conclusions Genes encoding potential cell wall synthesis proteins dominated one region, while bacteriophage-related sequences dominated the other region. The latter supports the hypothesis that acquisition of these bacteriophage sequences occurred during or after speciation of B. anthracis relative to B. cereus and B. thuringiensis. This study provides insight into the chromosomal differences between B. anthracis and its closest phylogenetic relatives.

  14. Insulin and insulin-like growth factor-1 (lGF-1) inhibit repair of potentially lethal radiation damage and chromosome aberrations and later DNA repair kinetics in plateau-phase A549 cells

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Plateau-phase A549 cells exhibit a high capacity for repair of potentially lethal radiation damage (PLD) when allowed to recover in their own spent medium. Addition of either insulin or insulin-like growth factor-1 (IGF-1) to the spent medium 60 to 120 min before irradiation significantly inhibits PLD repair. The 9-h recovery factor (survival with holding/survival without holding)is reduced from 10.8 ± 0.7 to 3.4 ±0.3 by insulin and to 3.0 ± 0.4 by IGF-1. Neither growth factor alters the cell age distribution of the plateau-phase cells, increases the rate of incorporation of 5-bromo-2'-deoxyuridine into DNA, or alters the extent of radiation-induced mitotic delay in cells subcultured immediately after irradiation. Both insulin and IGF-1 alter the kinetics for rejoining of DNA double-strand breaks (DSBs), slowing the fast component of rejoining significantly. However, these growth factors have no effect on the initial level of DSBs or on the percentage of residual unrejoined breaks at 120 min postirradiation. Both growth factors affect repair of lesions leading to dicentric, but not to acentric, chromosome aberrations significantly. In control cells (treated with phosphate-buffered saline, 90 min prior to irradiation), the half-time for disappearance of dicentrics was 4.1 h (3.4 to 5.1 h), and 47.1 ± 3.7% of the residual damage remained at 24 h postirradiation. Insulin and IGF-1 increased the half-time for disappearance of dicentrics to 5.2 h (3.9 to 7.7 h) and 5.7 h (5.5 to 5.9 h), respectively, and increased residual damage to 56.1 ±5.9% and 60.8 ± 6.0%, respectively. Overall, these data show that insulin and IGF-1 inhibit PLD repair in A54j9 cells by mechanisms which are independent of changes in cell cycle parameters. The data suggest that the growth factors act by inducing changes in chromatin conformation which promote misrepair of radiation-damaged DNA. 49 refs., 5 figs., 4 tabs

  15. Environmental Persistence of Bacillus anthracis and Bacillus subtilis Spores

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wood, Joseph P.; Meyer, Kathryn M.; Kelly, Thomas J.; Choi, Young W.; Rogers, James V.; Riggs, Karen B.; Willenberg, Zachary J.

    2015-01-01

    There is a lack of data for how the viability of biological agents may degrade over time in different environments. In this study, experiments were conducted to determine the persistence of Bacillus anthracis and Bacillus subtilis spores on outdoor materials with and without exposure to simulated sunlight, using ultraviolet (UV)-A/B radiation. Spores were inoculated onto glass, wood, concrete, and topsoil and recovered after periods of 2, 14, 28, and 56 days. Recovery and inactivation kinetics for the two species were assessed for each surface material and UV exposure condition. Results suggest that with exposure to UV, decay of spore viability for both Bacillus species occurs in two phases, with an initial rapid decay, followed by a slower inactivation period. The exception was with topsoil, in which there was minimal loss of spore viability in soil over 56 days, with or without UV exposure. The greatest loss in viable spore recovery occurred on glass with UV exposure, with nearly a four log10 reduction after just two days. In most cases, B. subtilis had a slower rate of decay than B. anthracis, although less B. subtilis was recovered initially. PMID:26372011

  16. Crystal structure of Bacillus anthracis transpeptidase enzyme CapD.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Wu, R.; Richter, S.; Zhang, R.; Anderson, V. J.; Missiakas, D.; Joachimiak, A.; Biosciences Division; Univ. of Chicago

    2009-09-04

    Bacillus anthracis elaborates a poly-{gamma}-d-glutamic acid capsule that protects bacilli from phagocytic killing during infection. The enzyme CapD generates amide bonds with peptidoglycan cross-bridges to anchor capsular material within the cell wall envelope of B. anthracis. The capsular biosynthetic pathway is essential for virulence during anthrax infections and can be targeted for anti-infective inhibition with small molecules. Here, we present the crystal structures of the {gamma}-glutamyltranspeptidase CapD with and without {alpha}-l-Glu-l-Glu dipeptide, a non-hydrolyzable analog of poly-{gamma}-d-glutamic acid, in the active site. Purified CapD displays transpeptidation activity in vitro, and its structure reveals an active site broadly accessible for poly-{gamma}-glutamate binding and processing. Using structural and biochemical information, we derive a mechanistic model for CapD catalysis whereby Pro{sup 427}, Gly{sup 428}, and Gly{sup 429} activate the catalytic residue of the enzyme, Thr{sup 352}, and stabilize an oxyanion hole via main chain amide hydrogen bonds.

  17. Bacillus anthracis genome organization in light of whole transcriptome sequencing

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Martin, Jeffrey; Zhu, Wenhan; Passalacqua, Karla D.; Bergman, Nicholas; Borodovsky, Mark

    2010-03-22

    Emerging knowledge of whole prokaryotic transcriptomes could validate a number of theoretical concepts introduced in the early days of genomics. What are the rules connecting gene expression levels with sequence determinants such as quantitative scores of promoters and terminators? Are translation efficiency measures, e.g. codon adaptation index and RBS score related to gene expression? We used the whole transcriptome shotgun sequencing of a bacterial pathogen Bacillus anthracis to assess correlation of gene expression level with promoter, terminator and RBS scores, codon adaptation index, as well as with a new measure of gene translational efficiency, average translation speed. We compared computational predictions of operon topologies with the transcript borders inferred from RNA-Seq reads. Transcriptome mapping may also improve existing gene annotation. Upon assessment of accuracy of current annotation of protein-coding genes in the B. anthracis genome we have shown that the transcriptome data indicate existence of more than a hundred genes missing in the annotation though predicted by an ab initio gene finder. Interestingly, we observed that many pseudogenes possess not only a sequence with detectable coding potential but also promoters that maintain transcriptional activity.

  18. Impact of Gastrointestinal Bacillus anthracis Infection on Hepatic B Cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Natacha Colliou

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available Ingestion of Bacillus anthracis results in rapid gastrointestinal (GI infection, known as GI anthrax. We previously showed that during GI anthrax, there is swift deterioration of intestinal barrier function leading to translocation of gut-associated bacteria into systemic circulation. Additionally, we described dysfunction in colonic B cells. In concordance with our previous studies, here, we report early migration of the Sterne strain of B. anthracis along with other gut-resident bacteria into the infected murine liver. Additionally, despite a global decrease in the B cell population, we observed an increase in both B-1a and marginal zone (MZ-like B cells. Both of these cell types are capable of producing immunoglobulins against common pathogens and commensals, which act as a general antibody barrier before an antigen-specific antibody response. Accumulation of these cells in the liver was associated with an increase in chemokine expression. These data suggest that the presence of Sterne and other commensals in the liver trigger migration of MZ-like B cells from the spleen to the liver to neutralize systemic spread. Further research is required to evaluate the possible cause of their failure to clear the infection within the liver, including the potential role of dysfunctional mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK signaling.

  19. Genetic analysis of petrobactin transport in Bacillus anthracis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carlson, Paul E; Dixon, Shandee D; Janes, Brian K; Carr, Katherine A; Nusca, Tyler D; Anderson, Erica C; Keene, Sarra E; Sherman, David H; Hanna, Philip C

    2010-02-01

    Iron acquisition mechanisms play an important role in the pathogenesis of many infectious microbes. In Bacillus anthracis, the siderophore petrobactin is required for both growth in iron-depleted conditions and for full virulence of the bacterium. Here we demonstrate the roles of two putative petrobactin binding proteins FatB and FpuA (encoded by GBAA5330 and GBAA4766 respectively) in B. anthracis iron acquisition and pathogenesis. Markerless deletion mutants were created using allelic exchange. The Delta fatB strain was capable of wild-type levels of growth in iron-depleted conditions, indicating that FatB does not play an essential role in petrobactin uptake. In contrast, Delta fpuA bacteria exhibited a significant decrease in growth under low-iron conditions when compared with wild-type bacteria. This mutant could not be rescued by the addition of exogenous purified petrobactin. Further examination of this strain demonstrated increased levels of petrobactin accumulation in the culture supernatants, suggesting no defect in siderophore synthesis or export but, instead, an inability of Delta fpuA to import this siderophore. Delta fpuA spores were also significantly attenuated in a murine model of inhalational anthrax. These results provide the first genetic evidence demonstrating the role of FpuA in petrobactin uptake. PMID:20487286

  20. Mechanisms of DNA Binding and Regulation of Bacillus anthracis DNA Primase

    OpenAIRE

    Biswas, Subhasis B; Wydra, Eric; Biswas, Esther E.

    2009-01-01

    DNA primases are pivotal enzymes in chromosomal DNA replication in all organisms. In this article, we report unique mechanistic characteristics of recombinant DNA primase from Bacillus anthracis (B. anthracis). The mechanism of action of B. anthracis DNA primase (DnaGBA) may be described in several distinct steps as follows. Its mechanism of action is initiated when it binds to single-stranded DNA (ssDNA) in the form of a trimer. Although DnaGBA binds to different DNA sequences with moderate ...

  1. Structural Basis for Latency and Function of Immune Inhibitor A Metallopeptidase, a Modulator of the Bacillus anthracis Secretome.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arolas, Joan L; Goulas, Theodoros; Pomerantsev, Andrei P; Leppla, Stephen H; Gomis-Rüth, F Xavier

    2016-01-01

    Immune inhibitor A(InhA)-type metallopeptidases are potential virulence factors secreted by members of the Bacillus cereus group. Two paralogs from anthrax-causing Bacillus anthracis (BaInhA1 and BaInhA2) were shown to degrade host tissue proteins with broad substrate specificity. Analysis of their activation mechanism and the crystal structure of a zymogenic BaInhA2 variant revealed a ∼750-residue four-domain structure featuring a pro-peptide, a catalytic domain, a domain reminiscent of viral envelope glycoproteins, and a MAM domain grafted into the latter. This domain, previously found only in eukaryotes, is required for proper protein expression in B. anthracis and evinces certain flexibility. Latency is uniquely modulated by the N-terminal segment of the pro-peptide, which binds the catalytic zinc through its α-amino group and occupies the primed side of the active-site cleft. The present results further our understanding of the modus operandi of an anthrax secretome regulator. PMID:26745529

  2. Colonic immune suppression, barrier dysfunction, and dysbiosis by gastrointestinal bacillus anthracis Infection.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yaíma L Lightfoot

    Full Text Available Gastrointestinal (GI anthrax results from the ingestion of Bacillus anthracis. Herein, we investigated the pathogenesis of GI anthrax in animals orally infected with toxigenic non-encapsulated B. anthracis Sterne strain (pXO1+ pXO2- spores that resulted in rapid animal death. B. anthracis Sterne induced significant breakdown of intestinal barrier function and led to gut dysbiosis, resulting in systemic dissemination of not only B. anthracis, but also of commensals. Disease progression significantly correlated with the deterioration of innate and T cell functions. Our studies provide critical immunologic and physiologic insights into the pathogenesis of GI anthrax infection, whereupon cleavage of mitogen-activated protein kinases (MAPKs in immune cells may play a central role in promoting dysfunctional immune responses against this deadly pathogen.

  3. Synthetic and Crystallographic Studies of a New Inhibitor Series Targeting Bacillus anthracis Dihydrofolate Reductase

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Beierlein, J.; Frey, K; Bolstad, D; Pelphrey, P; Joska, T; Smith, A; Priestley, N; Wright, D; Anderson, A

    2008-01-01

    Bacillus anthracis, the causative agent of anthrax, poses a significant biodefense danger. Serious limitations in approved therapeutics and the generation of resistance have produced a compelling need for new therapeutic agents against this organism. Bacillus anthracis is known to be insensitive to the clinically used antifolate, trimethoprim, because of a lack of potency against the dihydrofolate reductase enzyme. Herein, we describe a novel lead series of B. anthracis dihydrofolate reductase inhibitors characterized by an extended trimethoprim-like scaffold. The best lead compound adds only 22 Da to the molecular weight and is 82-fold more potent than trimethoprim. An X-ray crystal structure of this lead compound bound to B. anthracis dihydrofolate reductase in the presence of NADPH was determined to 2.25 A resolution. The structure reveals several features that can be exploited for further development of this lead series.

  4. Structures of two superoxide dismutases from Bacillus anthracis reveal a novel active centre

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The crystal structures of two manganese superoxide dismutases from B. anthracis were solved by X-ray crystallography using molecular replacement. The BA4499 and BA5696 genes of Bacillus anthracis encode proteins homologous to manganese superoxide dismutase, suggesting that this organism has an expanded repertoire of antioxidant proteins. Differences in metal specificity and quaternary structure between the dismutases of prokaryotes and higher eukaryotes may be exploited in the development of therapeutic antibacterial compounds. Here, the crystal structure of two Mn superoxide dismutases from B. anthracis solved to high resolution are reported. Comparison of their structures reveals that a highly conserved residue near the active centre is substituted in one of the proteins and that this is a characteristic feature of superoxide dismutases from the B. cereus/B. anthracis/B. thuringiensis group of organisms

  5. Genome Sequence of Bacillus anthracis Strain Stendal, Isolated from an Anthrax Outbreak in Cattle in Germany

    OpenAIRE

    Antwerpen, Markus; Elschner, Mandy; Gaede, Wolfgang; Schliephake, Annette; Grass, Gregor; Tomaso, Herbert

    2016-01-01

    In July 2012, an anthrax outbreak occurred among cattle in northern Germany resulting in ten losses. Here, we report the draft genome sequence of Bacillus anthracis strain Stendal, isolated from one of the diseased cows.

  6. Bacillus anthracis-like bacteria and other B. cereus group members in a microbial community within the international space station: a challenge for rapid and easy molecular detection of virulent B. anthracis.

    OpenAIRE

    Tongeren, van, F.W.; Roest, H.I.J.; Degener, J. E.; Harmsen, H. J. M.

    2014-01-01

    For some microbial species, such as Bacillus anthracis, the etiologic agent of the disease anthrax, correct detection and identification by molecular methods can be problematic. The detection of virulent B. anthracis is challenging due to multiple virulence markers that need to be present in order for B. anthracis to be virulent and its close relationship to Bacillus cereus and other members of the B. cereus group. This is especially the case in environments where build-up of Bacillus spores ...

  7. Decontamination Efficacy and Skin Toxicity of Two Decontaminants against Bacillus anthracis

    OpenAIRE

    Chad W Stratilo; Crichton, Melissa K. F.; Sawyer, Thomas W.

    2015-01-01

    Decontamination of bacterial endospores such as Bacillus anthracis has traditionally required the use of harsh or caustic chemicals. The aim of this study was to evaluate the efficacy of a chlorine dioxide decontaminant in killing Bacillus anthracis spores in solution and on a human skin simulant (porcine cadaver skin), compared to that of commonly used sodium hypochlorite or soapy water decontamination procedures. In addition, the relative toxicities of these decontaminants were compared in ...

  8. Genome Differences That Distinguish Bacillus anthracis from Bacillus cereus and Bacillus thuringiensis

    OpenAIRE

    Radnedge, Lyndsay; Agron, Peter G.; Hill, Karen K.; Jackson, Paul J.; Ticknor, Lawrence O; Keim, Paul; Andersen, Gary L.

    2003-01-01

    The three species of the group 1 bacilli, Bacillus anthracis, B. cereus, and B. thuringiensis, are genetically very closely related. All inhabit soil habitats but exhibit different phenotypes. B. anthracis is the causative agent of anthrax and is phylogenetically monomorphic, while B. cereus and B. thuringiensis are genetically more diverse. An amplified fragment length polymorphism analysis described here demonstrates genetic diversity among a collection of non-anthrax-causing Bacillus speci...

  9. Bacillus anthracis, Bacillus cereus, and Bacillus thuringiensis—One Species on the Basis of Genetic Evidence

    OpenAIRE

    Helgason, Erlendur; Økstad, Ole Andreas; Dominique A. Caugant; Johansen, Henning A.; Fouet, Agnes; Mock, Michéle; Hegna, Ida; Kolstø, Anne-Brit

    2000-01-01

    Bacillus anthracis, Bacillus cereus, and Bacillus thuringiensis are members of the Bacillus cereus group of bacteria, demonstrating widely different phenotypes and pathological effects. B. anthracis causes the acute fatal disease anthrax and is a potential biological weapon due to its high toxicity. B. thuringiensis produces intracellular protein crystals toxic to a wide number of insect larvae and is the most commonly used biological pesticide worldwide. B. cereus is a probably ubiquitous so...

  10. In Vivo Demonstration and Quantification of Intracellular Bacillus anthracis in Lung Epithelial Cells▿

    OpenAIRE

    Russell, Brooke H.; Liu, Qing; Sarah A Jenkins; Tuvim, Michael J.; Dickey, Burton F.; Xu, Yi

    2008-01-01

    Inhalational anthrax is initiated by the entry of Bacillus anthracis spores into the lung. A critical early event in the establishment of an infection is the dissemination of spores from the lung. Using in vitro cell culture assays, we previously demonstrated that B. anthracis spores are capable of entering into epithelial cells of the lung and crossing a barrier of lung epithelial cells without apparent disruption of the barrier integrity, suggesting a novel portal for spores to disseminate ...

  11. A recombinant Bacillus anthracis strain producing the Clostridium perfringens Ib component induces protection against iota toxins.

    OpenAIRE

    Sirard, J C; Weber, M.; Duflot, E; Popoff, M R; Mock, M

    1997-01-01

    The Bacillus anthracis toxinogenic Sterne strain is currently used as a live veterinary vaccine against anthrax. The capacity of a toxin-deficient derivative strain to produce a heterologous antigen by using the strong inducible promoter of the B. anthracis pag gene was investigated. The expression of the foreign gene ibp, encoding the Ib component of iota toxin from Clostridium perfringens, was analyzed. A pag-ibp fusion was introduced by allelic exchange into a toxin-deficient Sterne strain...

  12. Rapid identification of Bacillus anthracis by cell wall and capsule components direct fluorescent antibody assay

    OpenAIRE

    Lily Natalia; Rahmat Setya AdjI

    2008-01-01

    During the outbreak of anthrax, early diagnosis is critical for effective treatment. Numerous attempts have been made to design antigen based detection tests and to rapidly identify truly anthrax specific antigens for B. anthracis. In Indonesia, standard identification of B. anthracis relies on a combination of time consuming steps including bacterial culture and Ascoli precipitin test, which can take several days to provide a diagnosis. In this study, two component (cell wall and capsule) di...

  13. Aerosolized Bacillus anthracis Infection in New Zealand White Rabbits: Natural History and Intravenous Levofloxacin Treatment

    OpenAIRE

    Yee, Steven B.; Hatkin, Joshua M; Dyer, David N; Orr, Steven A.; Pitt, M. Louise M.

    2010-01-01

    The natural history for inhalational Bacillus anthracis (Ames strain) exposure in New Zealand white rabbits was investigated to better identify potential, early biomarkers of anthrax. Twelve SPF Bordetella-free rabbits were exposed to 150 LD50 aerosolized B. anthracis spores, and clinical signs, body temperature, complete blood count, bacteremia, and presence of protective antigen in the blood (that is, antigenemia) were examined. The development of antigenemia and bacteremia coincided and pr...

  14. Bridging the gap between detection and confirmation of B. anthracis in blood cultures

    OpenAIRE

    Hawkey, Suzanna

    2015-01-01

    The spore forming bacterium, Bacillus anthracis is the aetiological agent of anthrax. The 2001 US anthrax letter attacks and the 2009‐2010 outbreak of injectional anthrax in the UK highlighted the importance of early detection and confirmation of this agent, both for patient outcome and forensic investigations. A reliable and consistent method was used in this study to safely simulate blood cultures with B. anthracis and used to determine the time to positive detection. This was performed...

  15. Pathogenomic Sequence Analysis of Bacillus cereus and Bacillus thuringiensis Isolates Closely Related to Bacillus anthracis

    OpenAIRE

    Han, Cliff S.; Xie, Gary; Challacombe, Jean F.; Altherr, Michael R.; Bhotika, Smriti S.; Bruce, David; Campbell, Connie S.; Campbell, Mary L.; Chen, Jin; Chertkov, Olga; Cleland, Cathy; Dimitrijevic, Mira; Doggett, Norman A.; Fawcett, John J.; Glavina, Tijana

    2006-01-01

    Bacillus anthracis, Bacillus cereus, and Bacillus thuringiensis are closely related gram-positive, spore-forming bacteria of the B. cereus sensu lato group. While independently derived strains of B. anthracis reveal conspicuous sequence homogeneity, environmental isolates of B. cereus and B. thuringiensis exhibit extensive genetic diversity. Here we report the sequencing and comparative analysis of the genomes of two members of the B. cereus group, B. thuringiensis 97-27 subsp. konkukian sero...

  16. Identification of anthrax-specific signature sequence from Bacillus anthracis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rastogi, Vipin K.; Cheng, Tu-chen

    2001-08-01

    The primary objective was to identify and clone novel chromosomal DNA fragments for use as B. anthracis-specific markers. Towards this goal, 300 random primers (RAPD technology, randomly amplified polymorphic DNA) were screened to identify polymorphic loci on the anthrax chromosome. Five such DNA fragments uniquely amplifying from anthrax chromosome were identified and isolated. These fragments were cloned in pCR vector and sequenced. Database (genebank) analysis of one of the cloned probe, VRTC899, revealed the presence of specific chromosomal DNA probe, Ba813 from anthrax. This prove also contains flanking DNA with no homology to known sequences. Availability of signature DNA probes for detection of antrax-causing agent in environmental samples is critical for field application of DNA-based sensor technologies. In conclusion, we have demonstrated application of RAPD technology for identification of anthrax-specific signature sequences. This strategy can be extended to identify signature sequences from other BW agents.

  17. Bacillus anthracis Virulent Plasmid pX02 Genes Found in Large Plasmids of Two Other Bacillus Species

    OpenAIRE

    Luna, Vicki A.; King, Debra S.; Peak, K. Kealy; Reeves, Frank; Heberlein-Larson, Lea; Veguilla, William; Heller, L.; Duncan, Kathleen E; Cannons, Andrew C.; Amuso, Philip; Cattani, Jacqueline

    2006-01-01

    In order to cause the disease anthrax, Bacillus anthracis requires two plasmids, pX01 and pX02, which carry toxin and capsule genes, respectively, that are used as genetic targets in the laboratory detection of the bacterium. Clinical, forensic, and environmental samples that test positive by PCR protocols established by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for B. anthracis are considered to be potentially B. anthracis until confirmed by culture and a secondary battery of tests. We ...

  18. Decontamination Options for Drinking Water Contaminated with Bacillus anthracis Spores

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Raber, E; Burklund, A

    2010-02-16

    Five parameters were evaluated with surrogates of Bacillus anthracis spores to determine effective decontamination options for use in a contaminated drinking water supply. The parameters were: (1) type of Bacillus spore surrogate (B. thuringiensis or B. atrophaeus); (2) spore concentration in suspension (10{sup 2} to 10{sup 6} spores/ml); (3) chemical characteristics of decontaminant [sodium dicholor-s-triazinetrione dihydrate (Dichlor), hydrogen peroxide, potassium peroxymonosulfate (Oxone), sodium hypochlorite, and VirkonS{reg_sign}]; (4) decontaminant concentration (0.01% to 5%); and (5) decontaminant exposure time (10 min to 24 hr). Results from 162 suspension tests with appropriate controls are reported. Hydrogen peroxide at a concentration of 5%, and Dichlor and sodium hypochlorite at a concentration of 2%, were effective at spore inactivation regardless of spore type tested, spore exposure time, or spore concentration evaluated. This is the first reported study of Dichlor as an effective decontaminant for B. anthracis spore surrogates. Dichlor's desirable characteristics of high oxidation potential, high level of free chlorine, and more neutral pH than that of other oxidizers evaluated appear to make it an excellent alternative. All three oxidizers were effective against B. atrophaeus spores in meeting EPA's biocide standard of greater than a 6 log kill after a 10-minute exposure time and at lower concentrations than typically reported for biocide use. Solutions of 5% VirkonS{reg_sign} and Oxone were less effective decontaminants than other options evaluated in this study and did not meet the EPA's efficacy standard for biocides. Differences in methods and procedures reported by other investigators make quantitative comparisons among studies difficult.

  19. Capillary morphogenesis protein-2 is the major receptor mediating lethality of anthrax toxin in vivo

    OpenAIRE

    Liu, Shihui; Crown, Devorah; Miller-Randolph, Sharmina; Moayeri, Mahtab; Wang, Hailun; Hu, Haijing; Morley, Thomas; Leppla, Stephen H.

    2009-01-01

    Anthrax toxin, a major virulence factor of Bacillus anthracis, gains entry into target cells by binding to either of 2 von Willebrand factor A domain-containing proteins, tumor endothelium marker-8 (TEM8) and capillary morphogenesis protein-2 (CMG2). The wide tissue expression of TEM8 and CMG2 suggest that both receptors could play a role in anthrax pathogenesis. To explore the roles of TEM8 and CMG2 in normal physiology, as well as in anthrax pathogenesis, we generated TEM8- and CMG2-null mi...

  20. Tasers – Less than Lethal!

    OpenAIRE

    Sharma, Abiram; Theivacumar, Nada S; Souka, Hesham M

    2009-01-01

    We report a case of potentially lethal injury associated with the use of Taser. A 42-year-old man was stopped by police for potential detention. He held a large carving knife over his epigasrium threatening to stab himself.With a view to achieving immobilisation, a Taser gun was used. On activation of the Taser, the subject suffered a 7-cm wide and 10-cm deep stab injury to the upper abdomen. In this case, activation of the Taser resulted in the contraction of skeletal muscles, flexors more i...

  1. Tasers – Less than Lethal!

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sharma, Abiram; Theivacumar, Nada S; Souka, Hesham M

    2009-01-01

    We report a case of potentially lethal injury associated with the use of Taser. A 42-year-old man was stopped by police for potential detention. He held a large carving knife over his epigasrium threatening to stab himself.With a view to achieving immobilisation, a Taser gun was used. On activation of the Taser, the subject suffered a 7-cm wide and 10-cm deep stab injury to the upper abdomen. In this case, activation of the Taser resulted in the contraction of skeletal muscles, flexors more intensely than extensors, resulting in the stab injury. PMID:19416583

  2. Application of in vivo induced antigen technology (IVIAT to Bacillus anthracis.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sean M Rollins

    Full Text Available In vivo induced antigen technology (IVIAT is an immuno-screening technique that identifies bacterial antigens expressed during infection and not during standard in vitro culturing conditions. We applied IVIAT to Bacillus anthracis and identified PagA, seven members of a N-acetylmuramoyl-L-alanine amidase autolysin family, three P60 family lipoproteins, two transporters, spore cortex lytic protein SleB, a penicillin binding protein, a putative prophage holin, respiratory nitrate reductase NarG, and three proteins of unknown function. Using quantitative real-time PCR comparing RNA isolated from in vitro cultured B. anthracis to RNA isolated from BALB/c mice infected with virulent Ames strain B. anthracis, we confirmed induced expression in vivo for a subset of B. anthracis genes identified by IVIAT, including L-alanine amidases BA3767, BA4073, and amiA (pXO2-42; the bacteriophage holin gene BA4074; and pagA (pXO1-110. The exogenous addition of two purified putative autolysins identified by IVIAT, N-acetylmuramoyl-L-alanine amidases BA0485 and BA2446, to vegetative B. anthracis cell suspensions induced a species-specific change in bacterial morphology and reduction in viable bacterial cells. Many of the proteins identified in our screen are predicted to affect peptidoglycan re-modeling, and our results support significant cell wall structural remodeling activity during B. anthracis infection. Identification of L-alanine amidases with B. anthracis specificity may suggest new potential therapeutic targets.

  3. Bacillus anthracis in China and its relationship to worldwide lineages

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Schupp James M

    2009-04-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The global pattern of distribution of 1033 B. anthracis isolates has previously been defined by a set of 12 conserved canonical single nucleotide polymorphisms (canSNP. These studies reinforced the presence of three major lineages and 12 sub-lineages and sub-groups of this anthrax-causing pathogen. Isolates that form the A lineage (unlike the B and C lineages have become widely dispersed throughout the world and form the basis for the geographical disposition of "modern" anthrax. An archival collection of 191 different B. anthracis isolates from China provides a glimpse into the possible role of Chinese trade and commerce in the spread of certain sub-lineages of this pathogen. Canonical single nucleotide polymorphism (canSNP and multiple locus VNTR analysis (MLVA typing has been used to examine this archival collection of isolates. Results The canSNP study indicates that there are 5 different sub-lineages/sub-groups in China out of 12 previously described world-wide canSNP genotypes. Three of these canSNP genotypes were only found in the western-most province of China, Xinjiang. These genotypes were A.Br.008/009, a sub-group that is spread across most of Europe and Asia; A.Br.Aust 94, a sub-lineage that is present in Europe and India, and A.Br.Vollum, a lineage that is also present in Europe. The remaining two canSNP genotypes are spread across the whole of China and belong to sub-group A.Br.001/002 and the A.Br.Ames sub-lineage, two closely related genotypes. MLVA typing adds resolution to the isolates in each canSNP genotype and diversity indices for the A.Br.008/009 and A.Br.001/002 sub-groups suggest that these represent older and established clades in China. Conclusion B. anthracis isolates were recovered from three canSNP sub-groups (A.Br.008/009, A.Br.Aust94, and A.Br.Vollum in the western most portion of the large Chinese province of Xinjiang. The city of Kashi in this province appears to have served as a crossroads

  4. Determinants of the lethality of climate-related disasters in the Caribbean Community (CARICOM): a cross-country analysis

    OpenAIRE

    Andrewin, Aisha N.; Jose M. Rodriguez-Llanes; Debarati Guha-Sapir

    2015-01-01

    Floods and storms are climate-related hazards posing high mortality risk to Caribbean Community (CARICOM) nations. However risk factors for their lethality remain untested. We conducted an ecological study investigating risk factors for flood and storm lethality in CARICOM nations for the period 1980–2012. Lethality - deaths versus no deaths per disaster event- was the outcome. We examined biophysical and social vulnerability proxies and a decadal effect as predictors. We developed our regres...

  5. Curing of plasmid pXO1 from Bacillus anthracis using plasmid incompatibility.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xiankai Liu

    Full Text Available The large plasmid pXO1 encoding the anthrax toxin is important for the virulence of Bacillus anthracis. It is essential to cure pXO1 from B. anthracis to evaluate its role in the pathogenesis of anthrax infection. Because conventional methods for curing plasmids (e.g., curing agents or growth at elevated temperatures can induce mutations in the host chromosomal DNA, we developed a specific and reliable method to eliminate pXO1 from B. anthracis using plasmid incompatibility. Three putative replication origins of pXO1 were inserted into a temperature-sensitive plasmid to generate three incompatible plasmids. One of the three plasmids successfully eliminated the large plasmid pXO1 from B. anthracis vaccine strain A16R and wild type strain A16. These findings provided additional information about the replication/partitioning of pXO1 and demonstrated that introducing a small incompatible plasmid can generate plasmid-cured strains of B. anthracis without inducing spontaneous mutations in the host chromosome.

  6. Decontamination Efficacy and Skin Toxicity of Two Decontaminants against Bacillus anthracis.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chad W Stratilo

    Full Text Available Decontamination of bacterial endospores such as Bacillus anthracis has traditionally required the use of harsh or caustic chemicals. The aim of this study was to evaluate the efficacy of a chlorine dioxide decontaminant in killing Bacillus anthracis spores in solution and on a human skin simulant (porcine cadaver skin, compared to that of commonly used sodium hypochlorite or soapy water decontamination procedures. In addition, the relative toxicities of these decontaminants were compared in human skin keratinocyte primary cultures. The chlorine dioxide decontaminant was similarly effective to sodium hypochlorite in reducing spore numbers of Bacillus anthracis Ames in liquid suspension after a 10 minute exposure. After five minutes, the chlorine dioxide product was significantly more efficacious. Decontamination of isolated swine skin contaminated with Bacillus anthracis Sterne with the chlorine dioxide product resulted in no viable spores sampled. The toxicity of the chlorine dioxide decontaminant was up to two orders of magnitude less than that of sodium hypochlorite in human skin keratinocyte cultures. In summary, the chlorine dioxide based decontaminant efficiently killed Bacillus anthracis spores in liquid suspension, as well as on isolated swine skin, and was less toxic than sodium hypochlorite in cultures of human skin keratinocytes.

  7. Rapid detection of Bacillus anthracis by γ phage amplification and lateral flow immunochromatography.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cox, Christopher R; Jensen, Kirk R; Mondesire, Roy R; Voorhees, Kent J

    2015-11-01

    New, rapid point-of-need diagnostic methods for Bacillus anthracis detection can enhance civil and military responses to accidental or deliberate dispersal of anthrax as a biological weapon. Current laboratory-based methods for clinical identification of B. anthracis require 12 to 120h, and are confirmed by plaque assay using the well-characterized γ typing phage, which requires an additional minimum of 24h for bacterial culture. To reduce testing time, the natural specificity of γ phage amplification was investigated in combination with lateral flow immunochromatography (LFI) for rapid, point-of-need B. anthracis detection. Phage-based LFI detection of B. anthracis Sterne was validated over a range of bacterial and phage concentrations with optimal detection achieved in as little as 2h from the onset of amplification with a threshold sensitivity of 2.5×10(4)cfu/mL. The novel use of γ phage amplification detected with a simple, inexpensive LFI assay provides a rapid, sensitive, highly accurate, and field-deployable method for diagnostic ID of B. anthracis in a fraction of the time required by conventional techniques, and without the need for extensive laboratory culture. PMID:26310605

  8. [Species-specific sera against surface antigens of Bacillus anthracis strains].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barkova, I A; Barkov, A M; Alekseev, V V; Lipnitskiĭ, A V

    2010-11-01

    The species-related specificity of sera against 94-KD proteins isolated from culture filtrates of B. anthracis strains with different levels of virulence plasmids was studied to determine whether they might be used to identify the pathogen of anthrax. Sera against fractions 1 of culture filtrates of B. anthracis strains CTI (pXO1+ pXO2-), 81/1TR (pXO1- pXO2-), Davies (pXO1- pXO) separated by gel chromatography on Sephacryl S-300 were examined. In the gel immunodiffusion test with growing cultures, the sera exhibited non-identical antigens and differed in the presence of antibodies to antigens of related bacilli. The sera against fractions 1 of culture filtrates of toxin-producing and plasmidless strains displayed antigens produced only by B. anthracis strains into nutrient agar. Electroimmunotransblotting revealed that they contained antibodies mainly to 94-kD proteins and failed to react with B. cereus proteins with a molecular weight of 94 kD and with B. thuringiensis proteins with a molecular weight of 97 kD, which were extracted from autonomous cells. In the immunofluorescence test, immunoglobulins of sera against fractions 1 of culture filtrates of three strains stained autonomous cells and spores of 23 B. anthracis strains with different levels of virulence plasmids. In working dilutions, they did not react with antigens of 18 strains of related bacilli, which presents a possibility of using them for species identification of B. anthracis. PMID:21319392

  9. The population genetics of synthetic lethals.

    OpenAIRE

    Phillips, P. C.; Johnson, N. A.

    1998-01-01

    Synthetic lethals are variants at different loci that have little or no effect on viability singly but cause lethality in combination. The importance of synthetic lethals and, more generally, of synthetic deleterious loci (SDL) has been controversial. Here, we derive the expected frequencies for SDL under a mutation-selection balance for the complete haploid model and selected cases of the diploid model. We have also obtained simple approximations that demonstrate good fit to exact solutions ...

  10. Genome Sequence of Bacillus anthracis Isolated from an Anthrax Burial Site in Pollino National Park, Basilicata Region (Southern Italy)

    OpenAIRE

    Fasanella, Antonio; Braun, Peter; Grass, Gregor; Hanczaruk, Matthias; Aceti, Angela; Serrecchia, Luigina; Leonzio, Giuseppe; Tolve, Francesco; Georgi, Enrico; Antwerpen, Markus

    2015-01-01

    A Bacillus anthracis strain was isolated from a burial-site in Pollino National Park where a bovine died of anthrax and was buried in 2004. We report the first genome sequence of B. anthracis isolated in the Basilicata region (southern Italy), which is the highest risk area of anthrax infection in Italy.

  11. Novel Sample Preparation Method for Safe and Rapid Detection of Bacillus anthracis Spores in Environmental Powders and Nasal Swabs

    OpenAIRE

    Luna, Vicki A.; King, Debra; Davis, Carisa; Rycerz, Tony; Ewert, Matthew; Cannons, Andrew; Amuso, Philip; Cattani, Jacqueline

    2003-01-01

    Bacillus anthracis spores have been used as a biological weapon in the United States. We wanted to develop a safe, rapid method of sample preparation that provided safe DNA for the detection of spores in environmental and clinical specimens. Our method reproducibly detects B. anthracis in samples containing

  12. Testing nucleoside analogues as inhibitors of Bacillus anthracis spore germination in vitro and in macrophage cell culture.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alvarez, Zadkiel; Lee, Kyungae; Abel-Santos, Ernesto

    2010-12-01

    Bacillus anthracis, the etiological agent of anthrax, has a dormant stage in its life cycle known as the endospore. When conditions become favorable, spores germinate and transform into vegetative bacteria. In inhalational anthrax, the most fatal manifestation of the disease, spores enter the organism through the respiratory tract and germinate in phagosomes of alveolar macrophages. Germinated cells can then produce toxins and establish infection. Thus, germination is a crucial step for the initiation of pathogenesis. B. anthracis spore germination is activated by a wide variety of amino acids and purine nucleosides. Inosine and l-alanine are the two most potent nutrient germinants in vitro. Recent studies have shown that germination can be hindered by isomers or structural analogues of germinants. 6-Thioguanosine (6-TG), a guanosine analogue, is able to inhibit germination and prevent B. anthracis toxin-mediated necrosis in murine macrophages. In this study, we screened 46 different nucleoside analogues as activators or inhibitors of B. anthracis spore germination in vitro. These compounds were also tested for their ability to protect the macrophage cell line J774a.1 from B. anthracis cytotoxicity. Structure-activity relationship analysis of activators and inhibitors clarified the binding mechanisms of nucleosides to B. anthracis spores. In contrast, no structure-activity relationships were apparent for compounds that protected macrophages from B. anthracis-mediated killing. However, multiple inhibitors additively protected macrophages from B. anthracis. PMID:20921305

  13. cis-Acting elements that control expression of the master virulence regulatory gene atxA in Bacillus anthracis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dale, Jennifer L; Raynor, Malik J; Dwivedi, Prabhat; Koehler, Theresa M

    2012-08-01

    Transcription of the Bacillus anthracis structural genes for the anthrax toxin proteins and biosynthetic operon for capsule is positively regulated by AtxA, a transcription regulator with unique properties. Consistent with the role of atxA in virulence factor expression, a B. anthracis atxA-null mutant is avirulent in a murine model for anthrax. In culture, multiple signals impact atxA transcript levels, and the timing and steady-state level of atxA expression are critical for optimal toxin and capsule synthesis. Despite the apparent complex control of atxA transcription, only one trans-acting protein, the transition state regulator AbrB, has been demonstrated to interact directly with the atxA promoter. Here we employ 5' and 3' deletion analysis and site-directed mutagenesis of the atxA control region to demonstrate that atxA transcription from the major start site P1 is dependent upon a consensus sequence for the housekeeping sigma factor SigA and an A+T-rich upstream element for RNA polymerase. We also show that an additional trans-acting protein(s) binds specifically to atxA promoter sequences located between -13 and +36 relative to P1 and negatively impacts transcription. Deletion of this region increases promoter activity up to 15-fold. Site-directed mutagenesis of a 9-bp palindromic sequence within the region prevents binding of the trans-acting protein(s), increasing promoter activity 7-fold and resulting in a corresponding increase in AtxA and anthrax toxin production. Notably, an atxA promoter mutant that produced elevated levels of AtxA and toxin proteins during culture was unaffected for virulence in a murine model for anthrax. PMID:22636778

  14. Microbial forensics: fiber optic microarray subtyping of Bacillus anthracis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shepard, Jason R. E.

    2009-05-01

    The past decade has seen increased development and subsequent adoption of rapid molecular techniques involving DNA analysis for detection of pathogenic microorganisms, also termed microbial forensics. The continued accumulation of microbial sequence information in genomic databases now better positions the field of high-throughput DNA analysis to proceed in a more manageable fashion. The potential to build off of these databases exists as technology continues to develop, which will enable more rapid, cost effective analyses. This wealth of genetic information, along with new technologies, has the potential to better address some of the current problems and solve the key issues involved in DNA analysis of pathogenic microorganisms. To this end, a high density fiber optic microarray has been employed, housing numerous DNA sequences simultaneously for detection of various pathogenic microorganisms, including Bacillus anthracis, among others. Each organism is analyzed with multiple sequences and can be sub-typed against other closely related organisms. For public health labs, real-time PCR methods have been developed as an initial preliminary screen, but culture and growth are still considered the gold standard. Technologies employing higher throughput than these standard methods are better suited to capitalize on the limitless potential garnered from the sequence information. Microarray analyses are one such format positioned to exploit this potential, and our array platform is reusable, allowing repetitive tests on a single array, providing an increase in throughput and decrease in cost, along with a certainty of detection, down to the individual strain level.

  15. Glyconanobiotics: Novel carbohydrated nanoparticle antibiotics for MRSA and Bacillus anthracis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abeylath, Sampath C; Turos, Edward; Dickey, Sonja; Lim, Daniel V

    2008-03-01

    This report describes the synthesis and evaluation of glycosylated polyacrylate nanoparticles that have covalently-bound antibiotics within their framework. The requisite glycosylated drug monomers were prepared from one of three known antibiotics, an N-sec-butylthio beta-lactam, ciprofloxacin, and a penicillin, by acylation with 3-O-acryloyl-1,2-O-isopropylidene-5,6 bis((chlorosuccinyl)oxy)-d-glucofuranose (7) or 6-O-acetyl-3-O-acryloyl-1,2-O-isopropylidene-5-(chlorosuccinyl)oxy-alpha-d-glucofuranose (10). These acrylated monomers were subjected to emulsion polymerization in a 7:3 (w:w) mixture of butyl acrylate-styrene in the presence of sodium dodecyl sulfate as surfactant (3 weight %) and potassium persulfate as a radical initiator (1 weight %). The resulting nanoparticle emulsions were characterized by dynamic light scattering and found to have similar diameters ( approximately 40 nm) and size distributions to those of our previously studied systems. Microbiological testing showed that the N-sec-butylthio beta-lactam and ciprofloxacin nanoparticles both have powerful in vitro activities against methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus and Bacillus anthracis, while the penicillin-bound nanoparticles have no antimicrobial activity. This indicates the need for matching a suitable antibiotic with the nanoparticle carrier. Overall, the study shows that even relatively large, polar acrylate monomers (MW>1000 amu) can be efficiently incorporated into the nanoparticle matrix by emulsion polymerization, providing opportunities for further advances in nanomedicine. PMID:18063370

  16. Potential lethal and non-lethal effects of predators on dispersal of spider mites.

    OpenAIRE

    Otsuki, Hatsune; Yano, Shuichi

    2014-01-01

    Predators can affect prey dispersal lethally by direct consumption or non-lethally by making prey hesitate to disperse. These lethal and non-lethal effects are detectable only in systems where prey can disperse between multiple patches. However, most studies have drawn their conclusions concerning the ability of predatory mites to suppress spider mites based on observations of their interactions on a single patch or on heavily infested host plants where spider mites could hardly disperse towa...

  17. Structure of 5-formyltetrahydrofolate cyclo-ligase from Bacillus anthracis (BA4489)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The structure of 5-formyltetrahydrofolate cyclo-ligase from B. anthracis determined by X-ray crystallography at a resolution of 1.6 Å is described. Bacillus anthracis is a spore-forming bacterium and the causative agent of the disease anthrax. The Oxford Protein Production Facility has been targeting proteins from B. anthracis in order to develop high-throughput technologies within the Structural Proteomics in Europe project. As part of this work, the structure of 5-formyltetrahydrofolate cyclo-ligase (BA4489) has been determined by X-ray crystallography to 1.6 Å resolution. The structure, solved in complex with magnesium-ion-bound ADP and phosphate, gives a detailed picture of the proposed catalytic mechanism of the enzyme. Chemical differences from other cyclo-ligase structures close to the active site that could be exploited to design specific inhibitors are also highlighted

  18. Factors associated with repeated outbreak of anthrax in Bangladesh: qualitative and quantitative study

    OpenAIRE

    Jayedul Hassan; Md. Murshidul Ahsan; Md. Bahanur Rahman; Shah Md. Ziqrul Haq Chowdhury; Md. Shafiullah Parvej; KHM Nazmul Hussain Nazir

    2015-01-01

    Anthrax, caused by Bacillus anthracis is an acute, febrile disease of warm blooded animals including humans. Social norms and poverty in addition to climatic factors such as soil conditions, seasons of year, ambient temperature and rainfall influence the persistence of the B. anthracis and anthrax outbreaks. The present study was designed to reveal the factors influencing the repeated outbreak of anthrax in Bangladesh. Considering the previous outbreaks of anthrax, Sirajganj, Bogra, Kushtia, ...

  19. Whole genome protein microarrays for serum profiling of immunodominant antigens of Bacillus anthracis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Karen Elizabeth Kempsell

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available A commercial Bacillus anthracis (Anthrax whole genome protein microarray has been used to identify immunogenic Anthrax proteins using sera from groups of donors with (a confirmed B. anthracis naturally acquired cutaneous infection, (b confirmed B. anthracis intravenous drug use-acquired infection (c occupational exposure in a wool-sorters factory (d humans and rabbits vaccinated with the UK Anthrax protein vaccine and compared to naïve unexposed controls. Anti-IAP responses were observed for both IgG and IgA in the challenged groups; however the anti-IAP IgG response was more evident in the vaccinated group and the anti-IAP IgA response more evident in the B. anthracis-infected groups. Infected individuals appeared somewhat suppressed for their general IgG response, compared with other challenged groups.Immunogenic protein antigens were identified in all groups, some of which were shared between groups whilst others were specific for individual groups. The toxin proteins were immunodominant in all vaccinated, infected or other challenged groups. However a number of other chromosomally-located and plasmid encoded open reading frames were also recognised by infected or exposed groups in comparison to controls. Some of these antigens e.g. BA4182 are not recognised by vaccinated individuals, suggesting that there are proteins more specifically expressed by live Anthrax spores in vivo and are not currently found in the UK licensed Anthrax Vaccine (AVP. These may perhaps be preferentially expressed during infection and represent expression of alternative pathways in the B. anthracis ‘infectome’. These may make highly attractive candidates for diagnostic and vaccine biomarker development as they may be more specifically associated with the infectious phase of the pathogen. A number of B. anthracis small hypothetical protein targets have been synthesised, tested in mouse immunogenicity studies and validated in parallel using human sera from the

  20. Lethality of Suicide Attempt Rating Scale.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, K.; And Others

    1984-01-01

    Presents an 11-point scale for measuring the degree of lethality of suicide attempts. The scale has nine example "anchors" and uses the relative lethality of an extensive table of drugs. The scale can be used reliably by nonmedical personnel with no prior training. (Author/BL)

  1. Activation of the latent PlcR regulon in Bacillus anthracis

    OpenAIRE

    Sastalla, Inka; Maltese, Lauren M.; Pomerantseva, Olga M.; Pomerantsev, Andrei P; Keane-Myers, Andrea; Stephen H Leppla

    2010-01-01

    Many genes in Bacillus cereus and Bacillus thuringiensis are under the control of the transcriptional regulator PlcR and its regulatory peptide, PapR. In Bacillus anthracis, the causative agent of anthrax, PlcR is inactivated by truncation, and consequently genes having PlcR binding sites are expressed at very low levels when compared with B. cereus. We found that activation of the PlcR regulon in B. anthracis by expression of a PlcR–PapR fusion protein does not alter sporulation in strains c...

  2. Untersuchung der Virulenz Bacillus anthracis-ähnlicher Isolate aus West- und Zentralafrika

    OpenAIRE

    Dupke, Susann

    2011-01-01

    In 2001 and 2004 several great apes died of an Anthrax-like disease in Cameroon and the Côte d´Ivoire on the African continent. PCR analysis and histological studies of carcasses led to the assumption that the animals died due to infection with a new strain of B. anthracis. Further molecular genetic methods and sequencing of one of the isolates from Côte d´Ivoire revealed a close relationship of the new strains to B. cereus rather than B. anthracis, even though both characteristic virulence p...

  3. Confirmation of Bacillus anthracis from flesh-eating flies collected during a West Texas anthrax season.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blackburn, Jason K; Curtis, Andrew; Hadfield, Ted L; O'Shea, Bob; Mitchell, Mark A; Hugh-Jones, Martin E

    2010-07-01

    This case study confirms the interaction between necrophilic flies and white-tailed deer, Odocoileus virginianus, during an anthrax outbreak in West Texas (summer 2005). Bacillus anthracis was identified by culture and PCR from one of eight pooled fly collections from deer carcasses on a deer ranch with a well-documented history of anthrax. These results provide the first known isolation of B. anthracis from flesh-eating flies associated with a wildlife anthrax outbreak in North America and are discussed in the context of wildlife ecology and anthrax epizootics. PMID:20688697

  4. Sequencing of 16S rRNA Gene: A Rapid Tool for Identification of Bacillus anthracis

    OpenAIRE

    Sacchi, Claudio T.; Whitney, Anne M.; Mayer, Leonard W.; Morey, Roger; Steigerwalt, Arnold; Boras, Ariana; Weyant, Robin S.; Popovic, Tanja

    2002-01-01

    In a bioterrorism event, a tool is needed to rapidly differentiate Bacillus anthracis from other closely related spore-forming Bacillus species. During the recent outbreak of bioterrorism-associated anthrax, we sequenced the 16S rRNA generom these species to evaluate the potential of 16S rRNA gene sequencing as a diagnostic tool. We found eight distinct 16S types among all 107 16S rRNA gene seqs fuences that differed from each other at 1 to 8 positions (0.06% to 0.5%). All 86 B. anthracis had...

  5. Baulamycins A and B, broad-spectrum antibiotics identified as inhibitors of siderophore biosynthesis in Staphylococcus aureus and Bacillus anthracis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tripathi, Ashootosh; Schofield, Michael M; Chlipala, George E; Schultz, Pamela J; Yim, Isaiah; Newmister, Sean A; Nusca, Tyler D; Scaglione, Jamie B; Hanna, Philip C; Tamayo-Castillo, Giselle; Sherman, David H

    2014-01-29

    Siderophores are high-affinity iron chelators produced by microorganisms and frequently contribute to the virulence of human pathogens. Targeted inhibition of the biosynthesis of siderophores staphyloferrin B of Staphylococcus aureus and petrobactin of Bacillus anthracis hold considerable potential as a single or combined treatment for methicillin-resistant S. aureus (MRSA) and anthrax infection, respectively. The biosynthetic pathways for both siderophores involve a nonribosomal peptide synthetase independent siderophore (NIS) synthetase, including SbnE in staphyloferrin B and AsbA in petrobactin. In this study, we developed a biochemical assay specific for NIS synthetases to screen for inhibitors of SbnE and AsbA against a library of marine microbial-derived natural product extracts (NPEs). Analysis of the NPE derived from Streptomyces tempisquensis led to the isolation of the novel antibiotics baulamycins A (BmcA, 6) and B (BmcB, 7). BmcA and BmcB displayed in vitro activity with IC50 values of 4.8 μM and 19 μM against SbnE and 180 μM and 200 μM against AsbA, respectively. Kinetic analysis showed that the compounds function as reversible competitive enzyme inhibitors. Liquid culture studies with S. aureus , B. anthracis , E. coli , and several other bacterial pathogens demonstrated the capacity of these natural products to penetrate bacterial barriers and inhibit growth of both Gram-positive and Gram-negative species. These studies provide proof-of-concept that natural product inhibitors targeting siderophore virulence factors can provide access to novel broad-spectrum antibiotics, which may serve as important leads for the development of potent anti-infective agents. PMID:24401083

  6. Bacillus anthracis infections – new possibilities of treatment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dorota Żakowska

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available [b]Introduction and objective[/b]. [i]Bacillus anthracis[/i] is one of biological agents which may be used in bioterrorism attacks. The aim of this study a review of the new treatment possibilities of anthrax, with particular emphasis on the treatment of pulmonary anthrax. [b]Abbreviated description of the state of knowledge[/b]. Pulmonary anthrax, as the most dangerous clinical form of the disease, is also extremely difficult to treat. Recently, considerable progress in finding new drugs and suitable therapy for anthrax has been achieved, for example, new antibiotics worth to mentioning, levofloxacin, daptomycin, gatifloxacin and dalbavancin. However, alternative therapeutic options should also be considered, among them the antimicrobial peptides, characterized by lack of inducible mechanisms of pathogen resistance. Very promising research considers bacteriophages lytic enzymes against selected bacteria species, including antibiotic-resistant strains. [b]Results[/b]. Interesting results were obtained using monoclonal antibodies: raxibacumab, cAb29 or cocktails of antibodies. The application of CpG oligodeoxynucleotides to boost the immune response elicited by Anthrax Vaccine Adsorbed and CMG2 protein complexes, also produced satisfying therapy results. Furthermore, the IFN-α and IFN-β, PA-dominant negative mutant, human inter-alpha inhibitor proteins and LF inhibitors in combination with ciprofloxacin, also showed very promising results. [b]Conclusions[/b]. Recently, progress has been achieved in inhalation anthrax treatment. The most promising new possibilities include: new antibiotics, peptides and bacteriophages enzymes, monoclonal antibodies, antigen PA mutants, and inter alpha inhibitors applications. In the case of the possibility of bioterrorist attacks, the examination of inhalation anthrax treatment should be intensively continued.

  7. In silico and in vitro evaluation of PCR-based assays for the detection of Bacillus anthracis chromosomal signature sequences

    OpenAIRE

    Ågren, Joakim; Hamidjaja, Raditijo A; Hansen, Trine; Ruuls, Robin; Thierry, Simon; Vigre, Håkan; Janse, Ingmar; Sundström, Anders; Segerman, Bo; Koene, Miriam; Löfström, Charlotta; van Rotterdam, Bart; Derzelle, Sylviane

    2013-01-01

    Bacillus anthracis, the causative agent of anthrax, is a zoonotic pathogen that is relatively common throughout the world and may cause life threatening diseases in animals and humans. There are many PCR-based assays in use for the detection of B. anthracis. While most of the developed assays rely on unique markers present on virulence plasmids pXO1 and pXO2, relatively few assays incorporate chromosomal DNA markers due to the close relatedness of B. anthracis to the B. cereus group strains. ...

  8. Comparison of Growth and Toxin Production in Two Vaccine Strains of Bacillus anthracis

    OpenAIRE

    Johnson, Anna D; Spero, Leonard

    1981-01-01

    Two vaccine strains of Bacillus anthracis were monitored in a 10-liter fermentor to compare growth patterns and toxin production. Under identical conditions, the Sterne strain produced all three components of anthrax toxin, whereas strain V770 produced only the protective antigen.

  9. Macrophage-Enhanced Germination of Bacillus anthracis Endospores Requires gerS

    OpenAIRE

    Ireland, John A. W.; Hanna, Philip C.

    2002-01-01

    Germination of Bacillus anthracis Sterne and plasmidless Δ-Sterne endospores was dramatically enhanced in RAW264.7 macrophage-like cells, while germination of nonpathogenic Bacillus endospores was not. Elimination of gerS, a germinant receptor locus, caused a complete loss of cell-enhanced germination, implicating gerS in the breaking of endospore dormancy in vivo.

  10. Feeding Anthrax: The Crystal Structure of Bacillus anthracis InhA Protease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schacherl, Magdalena; Baumann, Ulrich

    2016-01-01

    Pathogenic bacteria secrete proteases to evade host defense and to acquire nutrients. In this issue of Structure, Arolas et al. (2016) describe the structural basis of activation and latency of InhA, a major secreted protease of Bacillus anthracis. PMID:26745525

  11. Anthrax Toxins in Context of Bacillus anthracis Spores and Spore Germination

    OpenAIRE

    Cote, Christopher K.; Susan L. Welkos

    2015-01-01

    The interaction of anthrax toxin or toxin components with B. anthracis spores has been demonstrated. Germinating spores can produce significant amounts of toxin components very soon after the initiation of germination. In this review, we will summarize the work performed that has led to our understanding of toxin and spore interactions and discuss the complexities associated with these interactions.

  12. Functional characterization of WalRK: A two-component signal transduction system from Bacillus anthracis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alisha Dhiman

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Two-component signal transduction systems (TCS, consisting of a sensor histidine protein kinase and its cognate response regulator, are an important mode of environmental sensing in bacteria. Additionally, they have been found to regulate virulence determinants in several pathogens. Bacillus anthracis, the causative agent of anthrax and a bioterrorism agent, harbours 41 pairs of TCS. However, their role in its pathogenicity has remained largely unexplored. Here, we show that WalRK of B. anthracis forms a functional TCS which exhibits some species-specific functions. Biochemical studies showed that domain variants of WalK, the histidine kinase, exhibit classical properties of autophosphorylation and phosphotransfer to its cognate response regulator WalR. Interestingly, these domain variants also show phosphatase activity towards phosphorylated WalR, thereby making WalK a bifunctional histidine kinase/phosphatase. An in silico regulon determination approach, using a consensus binding sequence from Bacillus subtilis, provided a list of 30 genes that could form a putative WalR regulon in B. anthracis. Further, electrophoretic mobility shift assay was used to show direct binding of purified WalR to the upstream regions of three putative regulon candidates, an S-layer protein EA1, a cell division ABC transporter FtsE and a sporulation histidine kinase KinB3. Our work lends insight into the species-specific functions and mode of action of B. anthracis WalRK.

  13. Bacillus thuringiensis as a surrogate for Bacillus anthracis in aerosol research.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tufts, Jenia A M; Calfee, M Worth; Lee, Sang Don; Ryan, Shawn P

    2014-05-01

    Characterization of candidate surrogate spores prior to experimental use is critical to confirm that the surrogate characteristics are as closely similar as possible to those of the pathogenic agent of interest. This review compares the physical properties inherent to spores of Bacillus anthracis (Ba) and Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt) that impact their movement in air and interaction with surfaces, including size, shape, density, surface morphology, structure and hydrophobicity. Also evaluated is the impact of irradiation on the physical properties of both Bacillus species. Many physical features of Bt and Ba have been found to be similar and, while Bt is considered typically non-pathogenic, it is in the B. cereus group, as is Ba. When cultured and sporulated under similar conditions, both microorganisms share a similar cylindrical pellet shape, an aerodynamic diameter of approximately 1 μm (in the respirable size range), have an exosporium with a hairy nap, and have higher relative hydrophobicities than other Bacillus species. While spore size, morphology, and other physical properties can vary among strains of the same species, the variations can be due to growth/sporulation conditions and may, therefore, be controlled. Growth and sporulation conditions are likely among the most important factors that influence the representativeness of one species, or preparation, to another. All Bt spores may, therefore, not be representative of all Ba spores. Irradiated spores do not appear to be a good surrogate to predict the behavior of non-irradiated spores due to structural damage caused by the irradiation. While the use of Bt as a surrogate for Ba in aerosol testing appears to be well supported, this review does not attempt to narrow selection between Bt strains. Comparative studies should be performed to test the hypothesis that viable Ba and Bt spores will behave similarly when suspended in the air (as an aerosol) and to compare the known microscale characteristics

  14. 40 CFR 725.421 - Introduced genetic material.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-07-01

    .... Sequence Source Toxin Name Bacillus alve Alveolysin Bacillus cereus Cereolysin Bacillus laterosporus Laterosporolysin Bacillus thuringiensis Thuringiolysin Clostridium bifermentans Lysin Clostridium botulinum Lysin... anthracis Edema factor (Factors I II); Lethal factor (Factors II III) Bacillus cereus...

  15. BAC Library Construction and Physical Mapping of Bacillus anthracis A16R

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Zhang Da; Zhu Houchu; Huang Liuyu

    2013-01-01

    Bacillus anthracis is an endospore-forming bacterium that causes severe inhalational anthrax, and bacillus anthracis A16R is an attenuated strain derived from Bacillus anthracis A16. The development of bacterial artificial chromosome (BAC) system has allowed the construction of large insert-size DNA libraries, and the bacterial artificial chromosomes (BACs) have become the preferred large insert cloning system for genomic analysis because such libraries are characteristically stable, high in ifdelity and easy to handle. To facilitate genome studies of this bacterium, a bacterial artiifcial chromosome library (BAC) has been established from genome DNA of Bacillus anthracis A16R. This library consisted of 9 600 clones randomly selected from more than 15 000 recombinant clones carrying inserts in the plindigoBAC-5 vectors. The mean insert size was 56 kbp, representing an approximate 12-fold genome coverage, while end sequences were obtained from 700 randomly selected clones. Sequences were compared with Bacillus anthracis Ames and Bacillus cereus ATCC 14579 Genome Project databases using the NCBI BLASTN search project. And most BLASTN results showed high identities and that the sequences’ sites could be used as STSs. To construct this physical map, Excel was used for the array of STSs and some gaps of the map were iflled up by PCR walking. Artemis-V4 was used in the construction of a genome-wide physical map with 93%genome coverage. The A16R BAC library proved to be a vital tool for the generation of a map that would not only allow the subsequent sequencing of defined areas of genome, but also provide immediate access to clones that were stable and convenient for functional genomic researches.

  16. The search and identification of the new immunodiagnostic targets of bacillus anthracis spore

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Spores of Bacillus anthracis have been used as bio warfare agent to bio terrorize purposes. As efficiency of anti-epidemic measures included urgent prevention and treatment is determined by terms within which the bio agent is identified. Direct and rapid spore detection by antibodies based detection system is very attractive alternative to current PCR-based assays or routine phenotyping which are the most accurate but are also complex, time-consumption and expensive. The main difficulty with respect to such kind of anthrax spores detection is a cross-reaction with spores of closely related bacteria. For development of species-specific antibodies to anthrax spores recombinant scFvs or hybridoma technique were used. In both case surface spore antigens contained species-specific epitopes are need. Among exosporium proteins only ExsF(BxpB), ExsK and SoaA are specific to B.cereus group. On the surface of B. anthracis spores, a unique tetrasaccharides containing an novel monosaccharide - anthrose, was discovered. It was shown that anthrose can be serving as species-specific target for B. anthracis spores detection. We have revealed that EA1 isolated from spore of Russians strain STI-1 contain carbohydrate which formed species-specific epitopes and determine immunogenicity of this antigen. Antibodies to this antigen specifically recognized the surface target of B. anthracis spores and do not reacted with others Bacillus spore. Based on these antibodies we developed the test-systems in different formats for rapid direct detection and identification of B. anthracis spores. The results of trial these test-systems with using more than 50 different Bacillus strains were indicated that carbohydrate of EA1 isolated from spore is effective immunodiagnostic target for anthrax spores bio detection.(author)

  17. The Use of Germinants to Potentiate the Sensitivity of Bacillus anthracis Spores to Peracetic Acid.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Celebi, Ozgur; Buyuk, Fatih; Pottage, Tom; Crook, Ant; Hawkey, Suzanna; Cooper, Callum; Bennett, Allan; Sahin, Mitat; Baillie, Leslie

    2016-01-01

    Elimination of Bacillus anthracis spores from the environment is a difficult and costly process due in part to the toxicity of current sporicidal agents. For this reason we investigated the ability of the spore germinants L-alanine (100 mM) and inosine (5 mM) to reduce the concentration of peracetic acid (PAA) required to inactivate B. anthracis spores. While L-alanine significantly enhanced (p = 0.0085) the bactericidal activity of 500 ppm PAA the same was not true for inosine suggesting some form of negative interaction. In contrast the germinant combination proved most effective at 100 ppm PAA (p = 0.0009). To determine if we could achieve similar results in soil we treated soil collected from the burial site of an anthrax infected animal which had been supplemented with spores of the Sterne strain of B. anthracis to increase the level of contamination to 10(4) spores/g. Treatment with germinants followed 1 h later by 5000 ppm PAA eliminated all of the spores. In contrast direct treatment of the animal burial site using this approach delivered using a back pack sprayer had no detectable effect on the level of B. anthracis contamination or on total culturable bacterial numbers over the course of the experiment. It did trigger a significant, but temporary, reduction (p < 0.0001) in the total spore count suggesting that germination had been triggered under real world conditions. In conclusion, we have shown that the application of germinants increase the sensitivity of bacterial spores to PAA. While the results of the single field trial were inconclusive, the study highlighted the potential of this approach and the challenges faced when attempting to perform real world studies on B. anthracis spores contaminated sites. PMID:26858699

  18. BAC Library Construction and Physical Mapping of Bacillus anthracis A16R

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Da Zhang

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available Bacillus anthracis is an endospore-forming bacterium that causes severe inhalational anthrax, and bacillus anthracis A16R is an attenuated strain derived from Bacillus anthracis A16. The development of bacterial artificial chromosome (BAC system has allowed the construction of large insert-size DNA libraries, and the bacterial artificial chromosomes (BACs have become the preferred large insert cloning system for genomic analysis because such libraries are characteristically stable, high in fidelity and easy to handle. To facilitate genome studies of this bacterium, a bacterial artificial chromosome library (BAC has been established from genome DNA of Bacillus anthracis A16R. This library consisted of 9 600 clones randomly selected from more than 15 000 recombinant clones carrying inserts in the plindigoBAC-5 vectors. The mean insert size was 56 kbp, representing an approximate 12-fold genome coverage, while end sequences were obtained from 700 randomly selected clones. Sequences were compared with Bacillus anthracis Ames and Bacillus cereus ATCC 14579 Genome Project databases using the NCBI BLASTN search project. And most BLASTN results showed high identities and that the sequences’ sites could be used as STSs. To construct this physical map, Excel was used for the array of STSs and some gaps of the map were filled up by PCR walking. Artemis-V4 was used in the construction of a genome-wide physical map with 93% genome coverage. The A16R BAC library proved to be a vital tool for the generation of a map that would not only allow the subsequent sequencing of defined areas of genome, but also provide immediate access to clones that were stable and convenient for functional genomic researches.

  19. The Use of Germinants to Potentiate the Sensitivity of Bacillus anthracis Spores to Peracetic Acid

    Science.gov (United States)

    Celebi, Ozgur; Buyuk, Fatih; Pottage, Tom; Crook, Ant; Hawkey, Suzanna; Cooper, Callum; Bennett, Allan; Sahin, Mitat; Baillie, Leslie

    2016-01-01

    Elimination of Bacillus anthracis spores from the environment is a difficult and costly process due in part to the toxicity of current sporicidal agents. For this reason we investigated the ability of the spore germinants L-alanine (100 mM) and inosine (5 mM) to reduce the concentration of peracetic acid (PAA) required to inactivate B. anthracis spores. While L-alanine significantly enhanced (p = 0.0085) the bactericidal activity of 500 ppm PAA the same was not true for inosine suggesting some form of negative interaction. In contrast the germinant combination proved most effective at 100 ppm PAA (p = 0.0009). To determine if we could achieve similar results in soil we treated soil collected from the burial site of an anthrax infected animal which had been supplemented with spores of the Sterne strain of B. anthracis to increase the level of contamination to 104 spores/g. Treatment with germinants followed 1 h later by 5000 ppm PAA eliminated all of the spores. In contrast direct treatment of the animal burial site using this approach delivered using a back pack sprayer had no detectable effect on the level of B. anthracis contamination or on total culturable bacterial numbers over the course of the experiment. It did trigger a significant, but temporary, reduction (p < 0.0001) in the total spore count suggesting that germination had been triggered under real world conditions. In conclusion, we have shown that the application of germinants increase the sensitivity of bacterial spores to PAA. While the results of the single field trial were inconclusive, the study highlighted the potential of this approach and the challenges faced when attempting to perform real world studies on B. anthracis spores contaminated sites. PMID:26858699

  20. DNA probe functionalized QCM biosensor based on gold nanoparticle amplification for Bacillus anthracis detection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hao, Rong-Zhang; Song, Hong-Bin; Zuo, Guo-Min; Yang, Rui-Fu; Wei, Hong-Ping; Wang, Dian-Bing; Cui, Zong-Qiang; Zhang, ZhiPing; Cheng, Zhen-Xing; Zhang, Xian-En

    2011-04-15

    The rapid detection of Bacillus anthracis, the causative agent of anthrax disease, has gained much attention since the anthrax spore bioterrorism attacks in the United States in 2001. In this work, a DNA probe functionalized quartz crystal microbalance (QCM) biosensor was developed to detect B. anthracis based on the recognition of its specific DNA sequences, i.e., the 168 bp fragment of the Ba813 gene in chromosomes and the 340 bp fragment of the pag gene in plasmid pXO1. A thiol DNA probe was immobilized onto the QCM gold surface through self-assembly via Au-S bond formation to hybridize with the target ss-DNA sequence obtained by asymmetric PCR. Hybridization between the target DNA and the DNA probe resulted in an increase in mass and a decrease in the resonance frequency of the QCM biosensor. Moreover, to amplify the signal, a thiol-DNA fragment complementary to the other end of the target DNA was functionalized with gold nanoparticles. The results indicate that the DNA probe functionalized QCM biosensor could specifically recognize the target DNA fragment of B. anthracis from that of its closest species, such as Bacillus thuringiensis, and that the limit of detection (LOD) reached 3.5 × 10(2)CFU/ml of B. anthracis vegetative cells just after asymmetric PCR amplification, but without culture enrichment. The DNA probe functionalized QCM biosensor demonstrated stable, pollution-free, real-time sensing, and could find application in the rapid detection of B. anthracis. PMID:21315574

  1. The effects of posture, body armor, and other equipment on rifleman lethality

    OpenAIRE

    Kramlich, Gary R.

    2005-01-01

    How does body armor and posture affect Soldier marksmanship? The Interceptor Body Armor (IBA) has significantly improved Soldier combat survivability, but in what ways does it change rifleman lethality? Moreover, can we model these effects so as to develop better tactics and operational plans? This study quantifies the effects of Soldier equipment on lethality through multi-factor logistic regression using data from range experiments with the 1st Brigade, 1st Infantry Division (Mechanized), a...

  2. The Potential Contributions of Lethal and Edema Toxins to the Pathogenesis of Anthrax Associated Shock

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Peter Q. Eichacker

    2011-09-01

    Full Text Available Outbreaks of Bacillus anthracis in the US and Europe over the past 10 years have emphasized the health threat this lethal bacteria poses even for developed parts of the world. In contrast to cutaneous anthrax, inhalational disease in the US during the 2001 outbreaks and the newly identified injectional drug use form of disease in the UK and Germany have been associated with relatively high mortality rates. One notable aspect of these cases has been the difficulty in supporting patients once shock has developed. Anthrax bacilli produce several different components which likely contribute to this shock. Growing evidence indicates that both major anthrax toxins may produce substantial cardiovascular dysfunction. Lethal toxin (LT can alter peripheral vascular function; it also has direct myocardial depressant effects. Edema toxin (ET may have even more pronounced peripheral vascular effects than LT, including the ability to interfere with the actions of conventional vasopressors. Additionally, ET also appears capable of interfering with renal sodium and water retention. Importantly, the two toxins exert their actions via quite different mechanisms and therefore have the potential to worsen shock and outcome in an additive fashion. Finally, both toxins have the ability to inhibit host defense and microbial clearance, possibly contributing to the very high bacterial loads noted in patients dying with anthrax. This last point is clinically relevant since emerging data has begun to implicate other bacterial components such as anthrax cell wall in the shock and organ injury observed with infection. Taken together, accumulating evidence regarding the potential contribution of LT and ET to anthrax-associated shock supports efforts to develop adjunctive therapies that target both toxins in patients with progressive shock.

  3. Comparative efficacy of Bacillus anthracis live spore vaccine and protective antigen vaccine against anthrax in the guinea pig.

    OpenAIRE

    Little, S F; Knudson, G B

    1986-01-01

    Several strains of Bacillus anthracis have been reported previously to cause fatal infection in immunized guinea pigs. In this study, guinea pigs were immunized with either a protective antigen vaccine or a live Sterne strain spore vaccine, then challenged with virulent B. anthracis strains isolated from various host species from the United States and foreign sources. Confirmation of previously reported studies (which used only protective antigen vaccines) was made with the identification of ...

  4. Roles of Macrophages and Neutrophils in the Early Host Response to Bacillus anthracis Spores in a Mouse Model of Infection

    OpenAIRE

    Cote, Christopher K.; Van Rooijen, Nico; Welkos, Susan L.

    2006-01-01

    The development of new approaches to combat anthrax requires that the pathogenesis and host response to Bacillus anthracis spores be better understood. We investigated the roles that macrophages and neutrophils play in the progression of infection by B. anthracis in a mouse model. Mice were treated with a macrophage depletion agent (liposome-encapsulated clodronate) or with a neutrophil depletion agent (cyclophosphamide or the rat anti-mouse granulocyte monoclonal antibody RB6-8C5), and the a...

  5. Rapid Focused Sequencing: A Multiplexed Assay for Simultaneous Detection and Strain Typing of Bacillus anthracis, Francisella tularensis, and Yersinia pestis

    OpenAIRE

    Turingan, Rosemary S.; Thomann, Hans-Ulrich; Zolotova, Anna; Tan, Eugene; Selden, Richard F.

    2013-01-01

    Background The intentional release of Bacillus anthracis in the United States in 2001 has heightened concern about the use of pathogenic microorganisms in bioterrorism attacks. Many of the deadliest bacteria, including the Class A Select Agents Bacillus anthracis, Francisella tularensis, and Yersinia pestis, are highly infectious via the pulmonary route when released in aerosolized form. Hence, rapid, sensitive, and reliable methods for detection of these biothreats and characterization of th...

  6. Bacillus anthracis Phospholipases C Facilitate Macrophage-Associated Growth and Contribute to Virulence in a Murine Model of Inhalation Anthrax

    OpenAIRE

    Heffernan, Brian J.; Thomason, Brendan; Herring-Palmer, Amy; Shaughnessy, Lee; McDonald, Rod; Fisher, Nathan; Huffnagle, Gary B.; Hanna, Philip

    2006-01-01

    Several models of anthrax pathogenesis suggest that early in the infectious process Bacillus anthracis endospores germinate and outgrow into vegetative bacilli within phagocytes before being released into the blood. Here, we define the respective contributions of three phospholipases C (PLCs) to the pathogenesis of B. anthracis. Genetic deletions of the PLCs were made in the Sterne 7702 background, resulting in the respective loss of their activities. The PLCs were redundant both in tissue cu...

  7. Herstellung monoklonaler Antikörper gegen thermostabile Antigene von Bacillus anthracis zur Anwendung in der Anthraxdiagnostik

    OpenAIRE

    Hilss, Karen

    2012-01-01

    Bei dem Ascoli Präzipitin Test (ASCOLI, 1911) handelt es sich um eine schnelle und kostengünstige Diagnostikmethode, bei der polyklonales Serum gegen thermostabile Antigene von B. anthracis eingesetzt wird. Allerdings ist dieser Test ungeeignet für Umweltproben, da Kreuzreaktionen mit anderen Bacillus Spezies auftreten. Durch die Verwendung monoklonaler Antikörper gegen spezifische thermostabile Antigene von B. anthracis könnte jedoch die Kreuzreaktivität mit anderen Bacillus Spezies eliminie...

  8. A Randomly Amplified Polymorphic DNA Marker Specific for the Bacillus cereus Group Is Diagnostic for Bacillus anthracis

    OpenAIRE

    Daffonchio, Daniele; Borin, Sara; Frova, Giuseppe; Gallo, Romina; Mori, Elena; Fani, Renato; Sorlini, Claudia

    1999-01-01

    Aiming to develop a DNA marker specific for Bacillus anthracis and able to discriminate this species from Bacillus cereus, Bacillus thuringiensis, and Bacillus mycoides, we applied the randomly amplified polymorphic DNA (RAPD) fingerprinting technique to a collection of 101 strains of the genus Bacillus, including 61 strains of the B. cereus group. An 838-bp RAPD marker (SG-850) specific for B. cereus, B. thuringiensis, B. anthracis, and B. mycoides was identified. This fragment included a pu...

  9. Differential Effects of Linezolid and Ciprofloxacin on Toxin Production by Bacillus anthracis in an In Vitro Pharmacodynamic System

    OpenAIRE

    Louie, Arnold; VanScoy, Brian D.; Heine, Henry S.; Liu, Weiguo; Abshire, Terry; Holman, Kari; Kulawy, Robert; Brown, David L.; Drusano, George L.

    2012-01-01

    Bacillus anthracis causes anthrax. Ciprofloxacin is a gold standard for the treatment of anthrax. Previously, using the non-toxin-producing ΔSterne strain of B. anthracis, we demonstrated that linezolid was equivalent to ciprofloxacin for reducing the total (vegetative and spore) bacterial population. With ciprofloxacin therapy, the total population consisted of spores. With linezolid therapy, the population consisted primarily of vegetative bacteria. Linezolid is a protein synthesis inhibito...

  10. Discerning Viable from Nonviable Yersinia pestis pgm- and Bacillus anthracis Sterne using Propidium Monoazide in the Presence of White Powders

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hess, Becky M.; Kaiser, Brooke LD; Sydor, Michael A.; Wunschel, David S.; Bruckner-Lea, Cindy J.; Hutchison, Janine R.

    2015-12-23

    ABSTRACT Aims To develop and optimize an assay to determine viability status of Bacillus anthracis Sterne and Yersinia pestis pgm- strains in the presence of white powders by coupling propidium monoazide (PMA) treatment with real-time PCR (qPCR) analysis. Methods and Results PMA selectively enters nonviable cells and binds DNA, thereby increasing qPCR assay cycle threshold (CT) values compared to untreated samples. Dye concentration, cell number and fitness, incubation time, inactivation methods, and assay buffer were optimized for B. anthracis Sterne and Y. pestis pgm-. Differences in CT values in nonviable cells compared to untreated samples were consistently > 9 for both B. anthracis Sterne vegetative cells and Y. pestis pgm- in the presence and absence of three different white powders. Our method eliminates the need for a DNA extraction step prior to detection by qPCR. Conclusions The developed assay enables simultaneous identification and viability assessment for B. anthracis Sterne and Y. pestis pgm- under laboratory conditions, even in the presence of white powders. Eliminating the DNA extraction step that is typically used reduces total assay time and labor requirements for sample analysis. Significance and Impact of the Study The method developed for simultaneous detection and viability assessment for B. anthracis and Y. pestis can be employed in forming decisions about the severity of a biothreat event or the safety of food. Keywords Bacillus anthracis, Yersinia pestis, Propidium Monoazide, qPCR, White Powders, Rapid Viability Detection

  11. Protection of rhesus macaques against inhalational anthrax with a Bacillus anthracis capsule conjugate vaccine.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chabot, Donald J; Ribot, Wilson J; Joyce, Joseph; Cook, James; Hepler, Robert; Nahas, Debbie; Chua, Jennifer; Friedlander, Arthur M

    2016-07-25

    The efficacy of currently licensed anthrax vaccines is largely attributable to a single Bacillus anthracis immunogen, protective antigen. To broaden protection against possible strains resistant to protective antigen-based vaccines, we previously developed a vaccine in which the anthrax polyglutamic acid capsule was covalently conjugated to the outer membrane protein complex of Neisseria meningitidis serotype B and demonstrated that two doses of 2.5μg of this vaccine conferred partial protection of rhesus macaques against inhalational anthrax . Here, we demonstrate complete protection of rhesus macaques against inhalational anthrax with a higher 50μg dose of the same capsule conjugate vaccine. These results indicate that B. anthracis capsule is a highly effective vaccine component that should be considered for incorporation in future generation anthrax vaccines. PMID:27329184

  12. Variable Lymphocyte Receptor Recognition of the Immunodominant Glycoprotein of Bacillus anthracis Spores

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kirchdoerfer, Robert N.; Herrin, Brantley R.; Han, Byung Woo; Turnbough, Jr., Charles L.; Cooper, Max D.; Wilson, Ian A. (SNU); (Scripps); (Emory); (UAB); (Emory Vaccine)

    2012-07-25

    Variable lymphocyte receptors (VLRs) are the adaptive immune receptors of jawless fish, which evolved adaptive immunity independent of other vertebrates. In lieu of the immunoglobulin fold-based T and B cell receptors, lymphocyte-like cells of jawless fish express VLRs (VLRA, VLRB, or VLRC) composed of leucine-rich repeats and are similar to toll-like receptors (TLRs) in structure, but antibodies (VLRB) and T cell receptors (VLRA and VLRC) in function. Here, we present the structural and biochemical characterization of VLR4, a VLRB, in complex with BclA, the immunodominant glycoprotein of Bacillus anthracis spores. Using a combination of crystallography, mutagenesis, and binding studies, we delineate the mode of antigen recognition and binding between VLR4 and BclA, examine commonalities in VLRB recognition of antigens, and demonstrate the potential of VLR4 as a diagnostic tool for the identification of B. anthracis spores.

  13. Laboratory Studies on Surface Sampling of Bacillus anthracis Contamination: Summary, Gaps, and Recommendations

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Piepel, Gregory F.; Amidan, Brett G.; Hu, Rebecca

    2011-11-28

    This report summarizes previous laboratory studies to characterize the performance of methods for collecting, storing/transporting, processing, and analyzing samples from surfaces contaminated by Bacillus anthracis or related surrogates. The focus is on plate culture and count estimates of surface contamination for swab, wipe, and vacuum samples of porous and nonporous surfaces. Summaries of the previous studies and their results were assessed to identify gaps in information needed as inputs to calculate key parameters critical to risk management in biothreat incidents. One key parameter is the number of samples needed to make characterization or clearance decisions with specified statistical confidence. Other key parameters include the ability to calculate, following contamination incidents, the (1) estimates of Bacillus anthracis contamination, as well as the bias and uncertainties in the estimates, and (2) confidence in characterization and clearance decisions for contaminated or decontaminated buildings. Gaps in knowledge and understanding identified during the summary of the studies are discussed and recommendations are given for future studies.

  14. Study of Immunization against Anthrax with the Purified Recombinant Protective Antigen of Bacillus anthracis

    OpenAIRE

    Singh,Yogendra; Ivins, Bruce E.; Leppla, Stephen H.

    1998-01-01

    Protective antigen (PA) of anthrax toxin is the major component of human anthrax vaccine. Currently available human vaccines in the United States and Europe consist of alum-precipitated supernatant material from cultures of toxigenic, nonencapsulated strains of Bacillus anthracis. Immunization with these vaccines requires several boosters and occasionally causes local pain and edema. We previously described the biological activity of a nontoxic mutant of PA expressed in Bacillus subtilis. In ...

  15. New Developments in Vaccines, Inhibitors of Anthrax Toxins, and Antibiotic Therapeutics for Bacillus anthracis

    OpenAIRE

    Beierlein, J.M.; Anderson, A. C.

    2011-01-01

    Bacillus anthracis, the causative agent responsible for anthrax infections, poses a significant biodefense threat. There is a high mortality rate associated with untreated anthrax infections; specifically, inhalation anthrax is a particularly virulent form of infection with mortality rates close to 100%, even with aggressive treatment. Currently, a vaccine is not available to the general public and few antibiotics have been approved by the FDA for the treatment of inhalation anthrax. With the...

  16. Modeling the potential distribution of Bacillus anthracis under multiple climate change scenarios for Kazakhstan.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Timothy Andrew Joyner

    Full Text Available Anthrax, caused by the bacterium Bacillus anthracis, is a zoonotic disease that persists throughout much of the world in livestock, wildlife, and secondarily infects humans. This is true across much of Central Asia, and particularly the Steppe region, including Kazakhstan. This study employed the Genetic Algorithm for Rule-set Prediction (GARP to model the current and future geographic distribution of Bacillus anthracis in Kazakhstan based on the A2 and B2 IPCC SRES climate change scenarios using a 5-variable data set at 55 km(2 and 8 km(2 and a 6-variable BioClim data set at 8 km(2. Future models suggest large areas predicted under current conditions may be reduced by 2050 with the A2 model predicting approximately 14-16% loss across the three spatial resolutions. There was greater variability in the B2 models across scenarios predicting approximately 15% loss at 55 km(2, approximately 34% loss at 8 km(2, and approximately 30% loss with the BioClim variables. Only very small areas of habitat expansion into new areas were predicted by either A2 or B2 in any models. Greater areas of habitat loss are predicted in the southern regions of Kazakhstan by A2 and B2 models, while moderate habitat loss is also predicted in the northern regions by either B2 model at 8 km(2. Anthrax disease control relies mainly on livestock vaccination and proper carcass disposal, both of which require adequate surveillance. In many situations, including that of Kazakhstan, vaccine resources are limited, and understanding the geographic distribution of the organism, in tandem with current data on livestock population dynamics, can aid in properly allocating doses. While speculative, contemplating future changes in livestock distributions and B. anthracis spore promoting environments can be useful for establishing future surveillance priorities. This study may also have broader applications to global public health surveillance relating to other diseases in addition to B

  17. Analysis of the sporicidal activity of chlorine dioxide disinfectant against Bacillus anthracis (Sterne strain)

    OpenAIRE

    Chatuev, B.A.; Peterson, J W

    2010-01-01

    Routine surface decontamination is an essential hospital and laboratory procedure, but the list of effective, noncorrosive disinfectants that kill spores is limited. We investigated the sporicidal potential of an aqueous chlorine dioxide solution and encountered some unanticipated problems. Quantitative bacteriological culture methods were used to determine the log10 reduction of Bacillus anthracis (Sterne strain) spores following 3 min exposure to various concentrations of aqueous chlorine d...

  18. Fluorescent Amplified Fragment Length Polymorphism Analysis of Bacillus anthracis, Bacillus cereus, and Bacillus thuringiensis Isolates

    OpenAIRE

    Hill, Karen K.; Ticknor, Lawrence O.; Okinaka, Richard T.; Asay, Michelle; Blair, Heather; Bliss, Katherine A.; Laker, Mariam; Pardington, Paige E.; Richardson, Amber P.; Tonks, Melinda; Beecher, Douglas J.; Kemp, John D.; Kolstø, Anne-Brit; Wong, Amy C. Lee; Keim, Paul

    2004-01-01

    DNA from over 300 Bacillus thuringiensis, Bacillus cereus, and Bacillus anthracis isolates was analyzed by fluorescent amplified fragment length polymorphism (AFLP). B. thuringiensis and B. cereus isolates were from diverse sources and locations, including soil, clinical isolates and food products causing diarrheal and emetic outbreaks, and type strains from the American Type Culture Collection, and over 200 B. thuringiensis isolates representing 36 serovars or subspecies were from the U.S. D...

  19. Application of In Vivo Induced Antigen Technology (IVIAT) to Bacillus anthracis

    OpenAIRE

    Peppercorn, Amanda; Young, John S; Drysdale, Melissa; Baresch, Andrea; Bikowski, Margaret V.; Ashford, David A.; Quinn, Conrad P.; Handfield, Martin; Hillman, Jeffrey D.; Lyons, C. Rick; Koehler, Theresa M.; Sonenshein, Abraham L.; Rollins, Sean McKenzie; Calderwood, Stephen Beaven; Ryan, Edward Thomas

    2008-01-01

    In vivo induced antigen technology (IVIAT) is an immuno-screening technique that identifies bacterial antigens expressed during infection and not during standard in vitro culturing conditions. We applied IVIAT to Bacillus anthracis and identified PagA, seven members of a N-acetylmuramoyl-L-alanine amidase autolysin family, three P60 family lipoproteins, two transporters, spore cortex lytic protein SleB, a penicillin binding protein, a putative prophage holin, respiratory nitrate reductase Nar...

  20. Automated thermochemolysis reactor for detection of Bacillus anthracis endospores by gas chromatography–mass spectrometry

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Graphical abstract: -- Highlights: •An automated sample preparation system for Bacillus anthracis endospores was developed. •A thermochemolysis method was applied to produce and derivatize biomarkers for Bacillus anthracis detection. •The autoreactor controlled the precise delivery of reagents, and TCM reaction times and temperatures. •Solid phase microextraction was used to extract biomarkers, and GC–MS was used for final identification. •This autoreactor was successfully applied to the identification of Bacillus anthracis endospores. -- Abstract: An automated sample preparation system was developed and tested for the rapid detection of Bacillus anthracis endospores by gas chromatography–mass spectrometry (GC–MS) for eventual use in the field. This reactor is capable of automatically processing suspected bio-threat agents to release and derivatize unique chemical biomarkers by thermochemolysis (TCM). The system automatically controls the movement of sample vials from one position to another, crimping of septum caps onto the vials, precise delivery of reagents, and TCM reaction times and temperatures. The specific operations of introduction of sample vials, solid phase microextraction (SPME) sampling, injection into the GC–MS system, and ejection of used vials from the system were performed manually in this study, although they can be integrated into the automated system. Manual SPME sampling is performed by following visual and audible signal prompts for inserting the fiber into and retracting it from the sampling port. A rotating carousel design allows for simultaneous sample collection, reaction, biomarker extraction and analysis of sequential samples. Dipicolinic acid methyl ester (DPAME), 3-methyl-2-butenoic acid methyl ester (a fragment of anthrose) and two methylated sugars were used to compare the performance of the autoreactor with manual TCM. Statistical algorithms were used to construct reliable bacterial endospore signatures, and 24

  1. PCR Assay To Detect Bacillus anthracis Spores in Heat-Treated Specimens

    OpenAIRE

    Fasanella, A.; Losito, S.; Adone, R.; Ciuchini, F.; Trotta, T.; Altamura, S. A.; D. Chiocco; Ippolito, G

    2003-01-01

    Recent interest in anthrax is due to its potential use in bioterrorism and as a biowarfare agent against civilian populations. The development of rapid and sensitive techniques to detect anthrax spores in suspicious specimens is the most important aim for public health. With a view to preventing exposure of laboratory workers to viable Bacillus anthracis spores, this study evaluated the suitability of PCR assays for detecting anthrax spores previously inactivated at 121°C for 45 min. The resu...

  2. GcoGSA-BA: A Global Core Genome SNP Analysis for Bacillus anthracis

    OpenAIRE

    Yamashita, Akifmi; Sekizuka, Tsuyoshi; Kuroda, Makoto

    2015-01-01

    As an issue of biosecurity, it is important to identify the origin of a suspected sample to distinguish whether it originated from the release of a bioterrorism agent or from environmental contamination with a virulent agent. Here we have developed an analytical pipeline that can infer the phylogenetic position of Bacillus cereus group species, including B. anthracis, from next-generation sequencing reads without extensive genomics skills. GcoGSA-BA can also detect the existence of anthrax pl...

  3. Forensic Application of Microbiological Culture Analysis To Identify Mail Intentionally Contaminated with Bacillus anthracis Spores†

    OpenAIRE

    Beecher, Douglas J.

    2006-01-01

    The discovery of a letter intentionally filled with dried Bacillus anthracis spores in the office of a United States senator prompted the collection and quarantine of all mail in congressional buildings. This mail was subsequently searched for additional intentionally contaminated letters. A microbiological sampling strategy was used to locate heavy contamination within the 642 separate plastic bags containing the mail. Swab sampling identified 20 bags for manual and visual examination. Air s...

  4. Activation of the latent PlcR regulon in Bacillus anthracis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sastalla, Inka; Maltese, Lauren M; Pomerantseva, Olga M; Pomerantsev, Andrei P; Keane-Myers, Andrea; Leppla, Stephen H

    2010-10-01

    Many genes in Bacillus cereus and Bacillus thuringiensis are under the control of the transcriptional regulator PlcR and its regulatory peptide, PapR. In Bacillus anthracis, the causative agent of anthrax, PlcR is inactivated by truncation, and consequently genes having PlcR binding sites are expressed at very low levels when compared with B. cereus. We found that activation of the PlcR regulon in B. anthracis by expression of a PlcR-PapR fusion protein does not alter sporulation in strains containing the virulence plasmid pXO1 and thereby the global regulator AtxA. Using comparative 2D gel electrophoresis, we showed that activation of the PlcR regulon in B. anthracis leads to upregulation of many proteins found in the secretome of B. cereus, including phospholipases and proteases, such as the putative protease BA1995. Transcriptional analysis demonstrated expression of BA1995 to be dependent on PlcR-PapR, even though the putative PlcR recognition site of the BA1995 gene does not exactly match the PlcR consensus sequence, explaining why this protein had escaped recognition as belonging to the PlcR regulon. Additionally, while transcription of major PlcR-dependent haemolysins, sphingomyelinase and anthrolysin O is enhanced in response to PlcR activation in B. anthracis, only anthrolysin O contributes significantly to lysis of human erythrocytes. In contrast, the toxicity of bacterial culture supernatants from a PlcR-positive strain towards murine macrophages occurred independently of anthrolysin O expression in vitro and in vivo. PMID:20688829

  5. Soluble Expression and Characterization of Biologically Active Bacillus anthracis Protective Antigen in Escherichia coli

    OpenAIRE

    Nagendra Suryanarayana; Vanlalhmuaka,; Bharti Mankere; Monika Verma; Kulanthaivel Thavachelvam; Urmil Tuteja

    2016-01-01

    Bacillus anthracis secretory protein protective antigen (PA) is primary candidate for subunit vaccine against anthrax. Attempts to obtain large quantity of PA from Escherichia coli expression system often result in the formation of insoluble inclusion bodies. Therefore, it is always better to produce recombinant proteins in a soluble form. In the present study, we have obtained biologically active recombinant PA in small scale E. coli shake culture system using three different expression cons...

  6. EXPRESSION OF BACILLUS ANTHRACIS PROTECTIVE ANTIGEN IN VACCINE STRAIN BRUCELLA ABORTUS RB51

    OpenAIRE

    Poff, Sherry Ann

    1997-01-01

    Bacillus anthracis is a facultative intracellular bacterial pathogen that can cause cutaneous, gastrointestinal or respiratory disease in many vertebrates, including humans. Commercially available anthrax vaccines for immunization of humans are of limited duration and do not protect against the respiratory form of the disease. Brucella abortus is a facultative intracellular bacterium that causes chronic infection in animals and humans. As with other intracellular pathogens, cell mediated im...

  7. Effective Antimicrobial Regimens for Use in Humans for Therapy of Bacillus anthracis Infections and Postexposure Prophylaxis†

    OpenAIRE

    Deziel, Mark R.; Heine, Henry; Louie, Arnold; Kao, Mark; Byrne, William R.; Basset, Jennifer; Miller, Lynda; Bush, Karen; Kelly, Michael; Drusano, G L

    2005-01-01

    Expanded options for treatments directed against pathogens that can be used for bioterrorism are urgently needed. Treatment regimens directed against such pathogens can be identified only by using data derived from in vitro and animal studies. It is crucial that these studies reliably predict the efficacy of proposed treatments in humans. The objective of this study was to identify a levofloxacin treatment regimen that will serve as an effective therapy for Bacillus anthracis infections and p...

  8. Recombinant Expression and Purification of a Tumor-Targeted Toxin in Bacillus anthracis

    OpenAIRE

    Bachran, Christopher; Abdelazim, Suzanne; Fattah, Rasem J.; Liu, Shihui; Leppla, Stephen H.

    2012-01-01

    Many recombinant therapeutic proteins are purified from Escherichia coli. While expression in E. coli is easily achieved, some disadvantages such as protein aggregation, formation of inclusion bodies, and contamination of purified proteins with the lipopolysaccharides arise. Lipopolysaccharides have to be removed to prevent inflammatory responses in patients. Use of the Gram-positive Bacillus anthracis as an expression host offers a solution to circumvent these problems. Using the multiple pr...

  9. Aerosolized Bacillus anthracis infection in New Zealand white rabbits: natural history and intravenous levofloxacin treatment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yee, Steven B; Hatkin, Joshua M; Dyer, David N; Orr, Steven A; Pitt, M Louise M

    2010-12-01

    The natural history for inhalational Bacillus anthracis (Ames strain) exposure in New Zealand white rabbits was investigated to better identify potential, early biomarkers of anthrax. Twelve SPF Bordetella-free rabbits were exposed to 150 LD(50) aerosolized B. anthracis spores, and clinical signs, body temperature, complete blood count, bacteremia, and presence of protective antigen in the blood (that is, antigenemia) were examined. The development of antigenemia and bacteremia coincided and preceded both pyrexia and inversion of the heterophil:lymphocyte ratio, an indicator of infection. Antigenemia was determined within 1 h by electrochemiluminescence immunoassay, compared with the 24-h traditional culture needed for bacteremia determination. Rabbits appeared clinically normal until shortly before succumbing to anthrax approximately 47 h after challenge or approximately 22 h after antigenemia, which suggests a relatively narrow therapeutic window of opportunity. To evaluate the therapeutic rabbit model, B. anthracis-exposed rabbits were treated (after determination of antigenemia and later confirmed to be bacteremic) intravenously with the fluoroquinolone antibiotic levofloxacin for 5 d at a total daily dose of 25 or 12.5 mg/kg, resulting in nearly 90% and 70% survival, respectively, to the study end (28 d after challenge). The peak level for 12.5 mg/kg was equivalent to that observed for a 500-mg daily levofloxacin dose in humans. These results suggest that intravenous levofloxacin is an effective therapeutic against inhalational anthrax. Taken together, our findings indicate that antigenemia is a viable and early biomarker for B. anthracis infection that can be used as a treatment trigger to allow for timely intervention against this highly pathogenic disease. PMID:21262133

  10. Siderophore-mediated iron acquisition in Bacillus anthracis and related strains.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hotta, Kinya; Kim, Chu-Young; Fox, David T; Koppisch, Andrew T

    2010-07-01

    Recent observations have shed light on some of the endogenous iron-acquisition mechanisms of members of the Bacillus cereus sensu lato group. In particular, pathogens in the B. cereus group use siderophores with both unique chemical structures and biological roles. This review will focus on recent discoveries in siderophore biosynthesis and biology in this group, which contains numerous human pathogens, most notably the causative agent of anthrax, Bacillus anthracis. PMID:20466767

  11. Sample collection of virulent and non-virulent B. anthracis and Y. pestis for bioforensics analysis

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hong-geller, Elizabeth [Los Alamos National Laboratory; Valdez, Yolanda E [Los Alamos National Laboratory; Shou, Yulin [Los Alamos National Laboratory; Yoshida, Thomas M [Los Alamos National Laboratory; Marrone, Babetta L [Los Alamos National Laboratory; Dunbar, John [Los Alamos National Laboratory

    2009-01-01

    Validated sample collection methods are needed for recovery of microbial evidence in the event of accidental or intentional release of biological agents into the environment. To address this need, we evaluated the sample recovery efficiencies of two collection methods -- swabs and wipes -- for both non-virulent and virulent strains of B. anthracis and Y. pestis from four types of non-porous surfaces: two hydrophilic surfaces, stainless steel and glass, and two hydrophobic surfaces, vinyl and plastic. Sample recovery was quantified using Real-time qPCR to assay for intact DNA signatures. We found no consistent difference in collection efficiency between swabs or wipes. Furthermore, collection efficiency was more surface-dependent for virulent strains than non-virulent strains. For the two non-virulent strains, B. anthracis Sterne and Y. pestis A1122, collection efficiency was approximately 100% and 1 %, respectively, from all four surfaces. In contrast, recovery of B. anthracis Ames spores and Y. pestis C092 from vinyl and plastic was generally lower compared to collection from glass or stainless steel, suggesting that surface hydrophobicity may playa role in the strength of pathogen adhesion. The surface-dependent collection efficiencies observed with the virulent strains may arise from strain-specific expression of capsular material or other cell surface receptors that alter cell adhesion to specific surfaces. These findings contribute to validation of standard bioforensics procedures and emphasize the importance of specific strain and surface interactions in pathogen detection.

  12. Laboratory studies on surface sampling of Bacillus anthracis contamination: summary, gaps and recommendations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Piepel, G F; Amidan, B G; Hu, R

    2012-12-01

    This article summarizes previous laboratory studies to characterize the performance of methods for collecting, storing/transporting, processing and analysing samples from surfaces contaminated by Bacillus anthracis or related surrogates. The focus is on plate culture and count estimates of surface contamination for swab, wipe and vacuum samples of porous and nonporous surfaces. Summaries of the previous studies and their results were assessed to identify gaps in information needed as inputs to calculate key parameters critical to risk management in biothreat incidents. One key parameter is the number of samples needed to make characterization or clearance decisions with specified statistical confidence. Other key parameters include the ability to calculate, following contamination incidents, the (i) estimates of B. anthracis contamination, as well as the bias and uncertainties in the estimates and (ii) confidence in characterization and clearance decisions for contaminated or decontaminated buildings. Gaps in knowledge and understanding identified during the summary of the studies are discussed. Additional work is needed to quantify (i) the false-negative rates of surface-sampling methods with lower concentrations on various surfaces and (ii) the effects on performance characteristics of: aerosol vs liquid deposition of spores, using surrogates instead of B. anthracis, real-world vs laboratory conditions and storage and transportation conditions. Recommendations are given for future evaluations of data from existing studies and possible new studies. PMID:22747878

  13. Crystallization and initial crystallographic analysis of phosphoglucosamine mutase from Bacillus anthracis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The enzyme phosphoglucosamine mutase from B. anthracis participates in the peptidoglycan-biosynthetic pathway. The expression, purification and crystallization of this enzyme are described; diffraction data have been collected to 2.7 Å resolution. The enzyme phosphoglucosamine mutase catalyzes the conversion of glucosamine 6-phosphate to glucosamine 1-phosphate, an early step in the formation of the nucleotide sugar UDP-N-acetylglucosamine, which is involved in peptidoglycan biosynthesis. These enzymes are part of the large α-d-phosphohexomutase enzyme superfamily, but no proteins from the phosphoglucosamine mutase subgroup have been structurally characterized to date. Here, the crystallization of phosphoglucosamine mutase from Bacillus anthracis in space group P3221 by hanging-drop vapor diffusion is reported. The crystals diffracted to 2.7 Å resolution under cryocooling conditions. Structure determination by molecular replacement was successful and refinement is under way. The crystal structure of B. anthracis phosphoglucosamine mutase should shed light on the substrate-specificity of these enzymes and will also serve as a template for inhibitor design

  14. Bacillus anthracis TIR Domain-Containing Protein Localises to Cellular Microtubule Structures and Induces Autophagy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carlsson, Emil; Thwaite, Joanne E; Jenner, Dominic C; Spear, Abigail M; Flick-Smith, Helen; Atkins, Helen S; Byrne, Bernadette; Ding, Jeak Ling

    2016-01-01

    Toll-like receptors (TLRs) recognise invading pathogens and mediate downstream immune signalling via Toll/IL-1 receptor (TIR) domains. TIR domain proteins (Tdps) have been identified in multiple pathogenic bacteria and have recently been implicated as negative regulators of host innate immune activation. A Tdp has been identified in Bacillus anthracis, the causative agent of anthrax. Here we present the first study of this protein, designated BaTdp. Recombinantly expressed and purified BaTdp TIR domain interacted with several human TIR domains, including that of the key TLR adaptor MyD88, although BaTdp expression in cultured HEK293 cells had no effect on TLR4- or TLR2- mediated immune activation. During expression in mammalian cells, BaTdp localised to microtubular networks and caused an increase in lipidated cytosolic microtubule-associated protein 1A/1B-light chain 3 (LC3), indicative of autophagosome formation. In vivo intra-nasal infection experiments in mice showed that a BaTdp knockout strain colonised host tissue faster with higher bacterial load within 4 days post-infection compared to the wild type B. anthracis. Taken together, these findings indicate that BaTdp does not play an immune suppressive role, but rather, its absence increases virulence. BaTdp present in wild type B. anthracis plausibly interact with the infected host cell, which undergoes autophagy in self-defence. PMID:27391310

  15. Ecological niche modeling of Bacillus anthracis on three continents: evidence for genetic-ecological divergence?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jocelyn C Mullins

    Full Text Available We modeled the ecological niche of a globally successful Bacillus anthracis sublineage in the United States, Italy and Kazakhstan to better understand the geographic distribution of anthrax and potential associations between regional populations and ecology. Country-specific ecological-niche models were developed and reciprocally transferred to the other countries to determine if pathogen presence could be accurately predicted on novel landscapes. Native models accurately predicted endemic areas within each country, but transferred models failed to predict known occurrences in the outside countries. While the effects of variable selection and limitations of the genetic data should be considered, results suggest differing ecological associations for the B. anthracis populations within each country and may reflect niche specialization within the sublineage. Our findings provide guidance for developing accurate ecological niche models for this pathogen; models should be developed regionally, on the native landscape, and with consideration to population genetics. Further genomic analysis will improve our understanding of the genetic-ecological dynamics of B. anthracis across these countries and may lead to more refined predictive models for surveillance and proactive vaccination programs. Further studies should evaluate the impact of variable selection of native and transferred models.

  16. Global metabolomic analysis of a mammalian host infected with Bacillus anthracis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nguyen, Chinh T Q; Shetty, Vivekananda; Maresso, Anthony W

    2015-12-01

    Whereas DNA provides the information to design life and proteins provide the materials to construct it, the metabolome can be viewed as the physiology that powers it. As such, metabolomics, the field charged with the study of the dynamic small-molecule fluctuations that occur in response to changing biology, is now being used to study the basis of disease. Here, we describe a comprehensive metabolomic analysis of a systemic bacterial infection using Bacillus anthracis, the etiological agent of anthrax disease, as the model pathogen. An organ and blood analysis identified approximately 400 metabolites, including several key classes of lipids involved in inflammation, as being suppressed by B. anthracis. Metabolite changes were detected as early as 1 day postinfection, well before the onset of disease or the spread of bacteria to organs, which testifies to the sensitivity of this methodology. Functional studies using pharmacologic inhibition of host phospholipases support the idea of a role of these key enzymes and lipid mediators in host survival during anthrax disease. Finally, the results are integrated to provide a comprehensive picture of how B. anthracis alters host physiology. Collectively, the results of this study provide a blueprint for using metabolomics as a platform to identify and study novel host-pathogen interactions that shape the outcome of an infection. PMID:26438791

  17. Structural study and thermodynamic characterization of inhibitor binding to lumazine synthase from Bacillus anthracis

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Morgunova, Ekaterina [Karolinska Institutet NOVUM, Center of Structural Biochemistry, Hälsovägen 7-9, 141 57 Huddinge (Sweden); Illarionov, Boris; Saller, Sabine [Institut für Lebensmittelchemie, Universität Hamburg, Grindelallee 117, 20146 Hamburg (Germany); Popov, Aleksander [European Synchrotron Radiation Facility, BP 220, F-38043 Grenoble CEDEX 09 (France); Sambaiah, Thota [Department of Medicinal Chemistry and Molecular Pharmacology, Purdue University (United States); Bacher, Adelbert [Chemistry Department, Technical University of Munich, 85747 Garching (Germany); Cushman, Mark [Department of Medicinal Chemistry and Molecular Pharmacology, Purdue University (United States); Fischer, Markus [Institut für Lebensmittelchemie, Universität Hamburg, Grindelallee 117, 20146 Hamburg (Germany); Ladenstein, Rudolf, E-mail: rudolf.ladenstein@ki.se [Karolinska Institutet NOVUM, Center of Structural Biochemistry, Hälsovägen 7-9, 141 57 Huddinge (Sweden)

    2010-09-01

    Crystallographic studies of lumazine synthase, the penultimate enzyme of the riboflavin-biosynthetic pathway in B. anthracis, provide a structural framework for the design of antibiotic inhibitors, together with calorimetric and kinetic investigations of inhibitor binding. The crystal structure of lumazine synthase from Bacillus anthracis was solved by molecular replacement and refined to R{sub cryst} = 23.7% (R{sub free} = 28.4%) at a resolution of 3.5 Å. The structure reveals the icosahedral symmetry of the enzyme and specific features of the active site that are unique in comparison with previously determined orthologues. The application of isothermal titration calorimetry in combination with enzyme kinetics showed that three designed pyrimidine derivatives bind to lumazine synthase with micromolar dissociation constants and competitively inhibit the catalytic reaction. Structure-based modelling suggested the binding modes of the inhibitors in the active site and allowed an estimation of the possible contacts formed upon binding. The results provide a structural framework for the design of antibiotics active against B. anthracis.

  18. Over-expression, purification, and confirmation of Bacillus anthracis transcriptional regulator NprR.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rice, Amy J; Woo, Jerry K; Khan, Attiya; Szypulinski, Michael Z; Johnson, Michael E; Lee, Hyunwoo; Lee, Hyun

    2016-09-01

    Quorum sensing (QS) has been recognized as an important biological phenomenon in which bacterial cells communicate and coordinate their gene expression and cellular processes with respect to population density. Bacillus anthracis is the etiological agent of fatal pulmonary anthrax infections, and the NprR/NprX QS system may be involved in its pathogenesis. NprR, renamed as aqsR for anthrax quorum sensing Regulator, is a transcriptional regulator that may control the expression of genes required for proliferation and survival. Currently, there is no protocol reported to over-express and purify B. anthracis AqsR. In this study, we describe cloning, purification, and confirmation of functional full-length B. anthracis AqsR protein. The AqsR gene was cloned into the pQE-30 vector with an HRV 3C protease recognition site between AqsR and the N-terminal His6-tag in order to yield near native AqsR after the His-tag cleavage, leaving only two additional amino acid residues at the N-terminus. PMID:26344899

  19. Optimization Studies on Cellulase Production from Bacillus Anthracis and Ochrobactrum Anthropic (YZ1 Isolated from Soil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mohammad Badrud Duza

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available The present study was carried out to demonstrate the optimization of growth conditions of bacteria with high cellulase activity. Cellulose degrading bacteria were isolated from soil samples collected from different areas of Guntur district, A.P. The bacteria were isolated using serial dilution and pour plate methods. The isolated bacteria were identified by morphological, biochemical and molecular procedures. The isolated bacterial species were screened for cellulase production in sub-merged fermentation process. The two tested bacterial species showed maximum yield for cellulase production. These two bacteria were identified as Bacillus anthracis and Ochrobactrum anthropi (YZ1. Supplementation of glucose, peptone, tyrosine and EDTA to the fermentation medium is favoured enzyme secretion. The optimum pH and temperature for the activity of crude enzyme was 8 and 45°C, respectively for Ochrobactrum anthropi (YZ1 while for Bacillus anthracis, it was 8 and 4°C, respectively.14% of inoculum level and 96 h of incubation period showed the maximum yield by both the species bacteria for cellulase production. The results of present study indicated that favorable fermentation conditions and the selection of a suitable growth medium played a key role in the production of cellulase from newly isolated Bacillus anthracis and Ochrobactrum anthropi (YZ1.

  20. Ultraviolet-B lethal damage on Pseudomonas aeruginosa

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Pseudomonas aeruginosa has shown an increased sensitivity compared with that of Escherichia coli and Enterobacter cloacae, when they were exposed to 0.4 kJ/m2 of ultraviolet-B radiation. The rapid decay in cell viability observed in Pseudomonas aeruginosa after the irradiation was influenced by factors such as culture media and the presence of pyocyanine during the irradiation. The radioinduced lethal damage could be prevented by photoreactivating treatment, indicating that pyrimidine dimer formation was the mechanism causing bacterial death. The results indicate that several environmental conditions may act as protective agents against ultraviolet-B-induced damage

  1. The Role of NF-κB and H3K27me3 Demethylase, Jmjd3, on the Anthrax Lethal Toxin Tolerance of RAW 264.7 Cells

    Science.gov (United States)

    Das, Nando Dulal; Jung, Kyoung Hwa; Chai, Young Gyu

    2010-01-01

    Background In Bacillus anthracis, lethal toxin (LeTx) is a critical virulence factor that causes immune suppression and toxic shock in the infected host. NF-κB is a key mediator of the inflammatory response and is crucial for the plasticity of first level immune cells such as macrophages, monocytes and neutrophils. In macrophages, this inflammatory response, mediated by NF-κB, can regulate host defense against invading pathogens. A Jumonji C family histone 3 lysine-27 (H3K27) demethylase, Jmjd3, plays a crucial role in macrophage plasticity and inflammation. Here we report that NF-κB and Jmjd3 can modulate the LeTx intoxication resistance of RAW 264.7 cells. Principal Findings This study showed that a 2 h exposure of macrophages to LeTx caused substantial cell death with a survival rate of around 40%. The expression of the Jmjd3 gene was induced 8-fold in intoxication-resistant cells generated by treatment with lipopolysaccharides of RAW 264.7 cells. These intoxication-resistant cell lines (PLx intox and PLxL intox) were maintained for 8 passages and had a survival rate of around 100% on secondary exposure to LeTx and lipopolysaccharides. Analysis of NF-κB gene expression showed that the expression of p100, p50 and p65 was induced around 20, 7 and 4 fold, respectively, in both of the intoxication-resistant cell lines following a 2 h treatment with PLxL (0.1+0.1+1 µg/ml). In contrast, these NF-κB genes were not induced following treatment with PLx treatment at the same concentrations. Conclusions Although LeTx influences macrophage physiology and causes defects of some key signaling pathways such as GSK3β which contributes to cytotoxicity, these results indicate that modulation of NF-κB by p50, p100 and Jmjd3 could be vital for the recovery of murine macrophages from exposure to the anthrax lethal toxin. PMID:20360974

  2. The role of NF-kappaB and H3K27me3 demethylase, Jmjd3, on the anthrax lethal toxin tolerance of RAW 264.7 cells.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nando Dulal Das

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: In Bacillus anthracis, lethal toxin (LeTx is a critical virulence factor that causes immune suppression and toxic shock in the infected host. NF-kappaB is a key mediator of the inflammatory response and is crucial for the plasticity of first level immune cells such as macrophages, monocytes and neutrophils. In macrophages, this inflammatory response, mediated by NF-kappaB, can regulate host defense against invading pathogens. A Jumonji C family histone 3 lysine-27 (H3K27 demethylase, Jmjd3, plays a crucial role in macrophage plasticity and inflammation. Here we report that NF-kappaB and Jmjd3 can modulate the LeTx intoxication resistance of RAW 264.7 cells. PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: This study showed that a 2 h exposure of macrophages to LeTx caused substantial cell death with a survival rate of around 40%. The expression of the Jmjd3 gene was induced 8-fold in intoxication-resistant cells generated by treatment with lipopolysaccharides of RAW 264.7 cells. These intoxication-resistant cell lines (PLx intox and PLxL intox were maintained for 8 passages and had a survival rate of around 100% on secondary exposure to LeTx and lipopolysaccharides. Analysis of NF-kappaB gene expression showed that the expression of p100, p50 and p65 was induced around 20, 7 and 4 fold, respectively, in both of the intoxication-resistant cell lines following a 2 h treatment with PLxL (0.1+0.1+1 microg/ml. In contrast, these NF-kappaB genes were not induced following treatment with PLx treatment at the same concentrations. CONCLUSIONS: Although LeTx influences macrophage physiology and causes defects of some key signaling pathways such as GSK3beta which contributes to cytotoxicity, these results indicate that modulation of NF-kappaB by p50, p100 and Jmjd3 could be vital for the recovery of murine macrophages from exposure to the anthrax lethal toxin.

  3. Reproductive-phase and interphase lethal cell damage after irradiation and treatment with cytostatics

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    After X-ray irradiation of manual cells, two lethal fractions occur due to reproductive and interphase death under low and high radiation doses. The damage kinetics on which this fact is based is compared with hypothetical tumour frequencies and leucemia induction caused in experiments. The reproductive-lethal damage can be manifested by means of colony size spectrometry, with the median colony size class differences (MCD) serving as measure for the damage found. The simultaneous effects of the cytostatics BLEOMYCIN or ICRF 159 and X-rays on reproductive lethal and interphase-lethal damage are measured by means of MCD and survival fraction, and the additive and intensifying effect' is judged with the help of suitably defined terms. This shows that the clinically used ICRF 159 has an additive effect on interphase-lethal and a sub-additive effect on reproductive-lethal cell damage. Thus, favourable results may be expected for the electivity factor in fractionated irradiation and with regard to delayed damage in healthy tissue. (orig.) 891 MG/orig. 892 RDG

  4. Sarcocystis Species Lethal for Domestic Pigeons

    OpenAIRE

    Olias, Philipp; Achim D Gruber; Kohls, Andrea; Hafez, Hafez M.; Heydorn, Alfred Otto; Mehlhorn, Heinz; Lierz, Michael

    2010-01-01

    A large number of Sarcocystis spp. infect birds as intermediate hosts, but pigeons are rarely affected. We identified a novel Sarcocystis sp. that causes lethal neurologic disease in domestic pigeons in Germany. Experimental infections indicated transmission by northern goshawks, and sequence analyses indicated transnational distribution. Worldwide spread is possible.

  5. Guidebook for non-lethal experimentation

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Paulissen, J.J.M.; Rahimi, R.

    2011-01-01

    In the 2009-2011 timeframe, NATO conducts a capability based assessment of Non-Lethal Weapon (NLW) systems. The work, performed by the RTO study team SAS-078, involves the development of NLW requirement descriptions, which are put against a set of NLW systems. Gaps are likely to occur, indicating th

  6. Bacillus anthracis-like bacteria and other B. cereus group members in a microbial community within the International Space Station: a challenge for rapid and easy molecular detection of virulent B. anthracis.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sandra P van Tongeren

    Full Text Available For some microbial species, such as Bacillus anthracis, the etiologic agent of the disease anthrax, correct detection and identification by molecular methods can be problematic. The detection of virulent B. anthracis is challenging due to multiple virulence markers that need to be present in order for B. anthracis to be virulent and its close relationship to Bacillus cereus and other members of the B. cereus group. This is especially the case in environments where build-up of Bacillus spores can occur and several representatives of the B. cereus group may be present, which increases the chance for false-positives. In this study we show the presence of B. anthracis-like bacteria and other members of the B. cereus group in a microbial community within the human environment of the International Space Station and their preliminary identification by using conventional culturing as well as molecular techniques including 16S rDNA sequencing, PCR and real-time PCR. Our study shows that when monitoring the microbial hygiene in a given human environment, health risk assessment is troublesome in the case of virulent B. anthracis, especially if this should be done with rapid, easy to apply and on-site molecular methods.

  7. gyrB as a phylogenetic discriminator for members of the Bacillus anthracis-cereus-thuringiensis group

    Science.gov (United States)

    La Duc, Myron T.; Satomi, Masataka; Agata, Norio; Venkateswaran, Kasthuri

    2004-01-01

    Bacillus anthracis, the causative agent of the human disease anthrax, Bacillus cereus, a food-borne pathogen capable of causing human illness, and Bacillus thuringiensis, a well-characterized insecticidal toxin producer, all cluster together within a very tight clade (B. cereus group) phylogenetically and are indistinguishable from one another via 16S rDNA sequence analysis. As new pathogens are continually emerging, it is imperative to devise a system capable of rapidly and accurately differentiating closely related, yet phenotypically distinct species. Although the gyrB gene has proven useful in discriminating closely related species, its sequence analysis has not yet been validated by DNA:DNA hybridization, the taxonomically accepted "gold standard". We phylogenetically characterized the gyrB sequences of various species and serotypes encompassed in the "B. cereus group," including lab strains and environmental isolates. Results were compared to those obtained from analyses of phenotypic characteristics, 16S rDNA sequence, DNA:DNA hybridization, and virulence factors. The gyrB gene proved more highly differential than 16S, while, at the same time, as analytical as costly and laborious DNA:DNA hybridization techniques in differentiating species within the B. cereus group.

  8. A Viral Nanoparticle with Dual Function as an Anthrax Antitoxin and Vaccine

    OpenAIRE

    Darly J Manayani; Diane Thomas; Dryden, Kelly A; Vijay Reddy; Marc E Siladi; Marlett, John M; Rainey, G. Jonah A.; Pique, Michael E.; Heather M Scobie; Mark Yeager; Young, John A. T.; Marianne Manchester; Anette Schneemann

    2007-01-01

    Author Summary Anthrax is caused by the spore-forming, Gram-positive bacterium Bacillus anthracis. The toxic effects of B. anthracis are predominantly due to an AB-type toxin made up of the receptor-binding subunit protective antigen (PA) and two enzymatic subunits called lethal factor and edema factor. Protective immunity to B. anthracis infection is conferred by antibodies against PA, which is the primary component of the current anthrax vaccine. Although the vaccine is safe and effective, ...

  9. Experimental Design for a Macrofoam-Swab Study Relating the Recovery Efficiency and False Negative Rate to Low Concentrations of Two Bacillus anthracis Surrogates on Four Surface Materials

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Piepel, Gregory F.; Hutchison, Janine R.

    2014-12-05

    This report describes the experimental design for a laboratory study to quantify the recovery efficiencies and false negative rates of a validated, macrofoam-swab sampling method for low concentrations of Bacillus anthracis Sterne (BAS) and Bacillus atrophaeus (BG) spores on four surface materials (stainless steel, glass, vinyl tile, plastic light cover panel). Two analytical methods (culture and polymerase chain reaction) will be used. Only one previous study has investigated how the false negative rate depends on test factors. The surrogates BAS and BG have not been tested together in the same study previously. Hence, this study will provide for completing gaps in the available information on the performance of macrofoam-swab sampling at low concentrations.

  10. Experimental Design for a Macrofoam Swab Study Relating the Recovery Efficiency and False Negative Rate to Low Concentrations of Two Bacillus anthracis Surrogates on Four Surface Materials

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Piepel, Gregory F.; Hutchison, Janine R.

    2014-04-16

    This report describes the experimental design for a laboratory study to quantify the recovery efficiencies and false negative rates of a validated, macrofoam swab sampling method for low concentrations of Bacillus anthracis Sterne (BAS) and Bacillus atrophaeus (BG) spores on four surface materials (stainless steel, glass, vinyl tile, plastic light cover panel). Two analytical methods (plating/counting and polymerase chain reaction) will be used. Only one previous study has investigated false negative as a function of affecting test factors. The surrogates BAS and BG have not been tested together in the same study previously. Hence, this study will provide for completing gaps in the available information on the performance of macrofoam swab sampling at low concentrations.

  11. Effects of lethal and non-lethal malaria on the mononuclear phagocyte system

    OpenAIRE

    Carlos Eduardo Tosta; Greta Ruiz; Nina Wedderburn

    1983-01-01

    The effects ofone non-lethal species ofmalarialparasite, Plasmodium yoelii, and one lethal species, P. berghei, on the mononuclear phagocyte system (MPS) of BALB/c mice were studied. P. yoelii caused a greater and more sustained expansion and activation of the MPS, and the two major populations of spleen phagocytic cells-red pulp and marginal zone macrophages - exhibited a greater increase in numbers in this infection. During the course of P. berghei mataria, the spleen was progressively occu...

  12. Proteomics study of anthrax lethal toxin-treated murine macrophages.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kuhn, Jeffrey F; Hoerth, Patric; Hoehn, Silvia T; Preckel, Tobias; Tomer, Kenneth B

    2006-04-01

    The anthrax lethal toxin (LeTx) is composed of two proteins, protective antigen and lethal factor, which bind and enter the cell through a host receptor termed the anthrax toxin receptor (ATR). In the cell, LeTx targets p38, part of the MAP kinase signaling pathway. The toxin appears to initiate an apoptotic pathway in infected cells, indicating additional downstream targets of the toxin. We have applied a proteomics approach to investigate these downstream targets and the affected processes. In this study we have used an improved strategy for fractionation based on protein pI, off-gel electrophoresis, employed in conjunction with relative quantitation using the mass labeling approach. In our survey, 67 proteins were observed and quantified from the cytosol of RAW 264.7 cells with respect to control versus toxin-treated cells. Many of these proteins are involved in the oxidative stress response, as well as apoptosis, and thus likely to be relevant to the effects of anthrax in infected cells. Our results indicate that the tumor necrosis factor-alpha-mediated pathway is compromised in intoxicated cells. The knowledge of such changes and the pathways leading to the changes should be of great value in understanding and combating this disease. PMID:16609935

  13. Production of Functionally Active and Immunogenic Non-Glycosylated Protective Antigen from Bacillus anthracis in Nicotiana benthamiana by Co-Expression with Peptide-N-Glycosidase F (PNGase F) of Flavobacterium meningosepticum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mamedov, Tarlan; Chichester, Jessica A; Jones, R Mark; Ghosh, Ananya; Coffin, Megan V; Herschbach, Kristina; Prokhnevsky, Alexey I; Streatfield, Stephen J; Yusibov, Vidadi

    2016-01-01

    Bacillus anthracis has long been considered a potential biological warfare agent, and therefore, there is a need for a safe, low-cost and highly efficient anthrax vaccine with demonstrated long-term stability for mass vaccination in case of an emergency. Many efforts have been made towards developing an anthrax vaccine based on recombinant protective antigen (rPA) of B. anthracis, a key component of the anthrax toxin, produced using different expression systems. Plants represent a promising recombinant protein production platform due to their relatively low cost, rapid scalability and favorable safety profile. Previous studies have shown that full-length rPA produced in Nicotiana benthamiana (pp-PA83) is immunogenic and can provide full protection against lethal spore challenge; however, further improvement in the potency and stability of the vaccine candidate is necessary. PA of B. anthracis is not a glycoprotein in its native host; however, this protein contains potential N-linked glycosylation sites, which can be aberrantly glycosylated during expression in eukaryotic systems including plants. This glycosylation could affect the availability of certain key epitopes either due to masking or misfolding of the protein. Therefore, a non-glycosylated form of pp-PA83 was engineered and produced in N. benthamiana using an in vivo deglycosylation approach based on co-expression of peptide-N-glycosidase F (PNGase F) from Flavobacterium meningosepticum. For comparison, versions of pp-PA83 containing point mutations in six potential N-glycosylation sites were also engineered and expressed in N. benthamiana. The in vivo deglycosylated pp-PA83 (pp-dPA83) was shown to have in vitro activity, in contrast to glycosylated pp-PA83, and to induce significantly higher levels of toxin-neutralizing antibody responses in mice compared with glycosylated pp-PA83, in vitro deglycosylated pp-PA83 or the mutated versions of pp-PA83. These results suggest that pp-dPA83 may offer advantages

  14. The mutational landscape of lethal castration-resistant prostate cancer.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grasso, Catherine S; Wu, Yi-Mi; Robinson, Dan R; Cao, Xuhong; Dhanasekaran, Saravana M; Khan, Amjad P; Quist, Michael J; Jing, Xiaojun; Lonigro, Robert J; Brenner, J Chad; Asangani, Irfan A; Ateeq, Bushra; Chun, Sang Y; Siddiqui, Javed; Sam, Lee; Anstett, Matt; Mehra, Rohit; Prensner, John R; Palanisamy, Nallasivam; Ryslik, Gregory A; Vandin, Fabio; Raphael, Benjamin J; Kunju, Lakshmi P; Rhodes, Daniel R; Pienta, Kenneth J; Chinnaiyan, Arul M; Tomlins, Scott A

    2012-07-12

    Characterization of the prostate cancer transcriptome and genome has identified chromosomal rearrangements and copy number gains and losses, including ETS gene family fusions, PTEN loss and androgen receptor (AR) amplification, which drive prostate cancer development and progression to lethal, metastatic castration-resistant prostate cancer (CRPC). However, less is known about the role of mutations. Here we sequenced the exomes of 50 lethal, heavily pre-treated metastatic CRPCs obtained at rapid autopsy (including three different foci from the same patient) and 11 treatment-naive, high-grade localized prostate cancers. We identified low overall mutation rates even in heavily treated CRPCs (2.00 per megabase) and confirmed the monoclonal origin of lethal CRPC. Integrating exome copy number analysis identified disruptions of CHD1 that define a subtype of ETS gene family fusion-negative prostate cancer. Similarly, we demonstrate that ETS2, which is deleted in approximately one-third of CRPCs (commonly through TMPRSS2:ERG fusions), is also deregulated through mutation. Furthermore, we identified recurrent mutations in multiple chromatin- and histone-modifying genes, including MLL2 (mutated in 8.6% of prostate cancers), and demonstrate interaction of the MLL complex with the AR, which is required for AR-mediated signalling. We also identified novel recurrent mutations in the AR collaborating factor FOXA1, which is mutated in 5 of 147 (3.4%) prostate cancers (both untreated localized prostate cancer and CRPC), and showed that mutated FOXA1 represses androgen signalling and increases tumour growth. Proteins that physically interact with the AR, such as the ERG gene fusion product, FOXA1, MLL2, UTX (also known as KDM6A) and ASXL1 were found to be mutated in CRPC. In summary, we describe the mutational landscape of a heavily treated metastatic cancer, identify novel mechanisms of AR signalling deregulated in prostate cancer, and prioritize candidates for future study. PMID

  15. Complications and lethality rate in the surgery of cerebral aneurysms

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Roganović Zoran

    2002-01-01

    Full Text Available Aim. To establish the risk factors for complications and fatal outcome after the operative occlusion of cerebral aneurysms. Methods. Retrospective study on 91 (lethality rate and on 72 operated patients (complications. For survived and dead patients, as well as for patients with and without complications, following parameters were compared: gender, age, clinical condition, preoperative interval, use of temporary clips, vasospasm, outcome, as well as localization, size and intraoperative rupture of the aneurysm. Results. Complications existed: in 54.5% of aneurysms of middle cerebral and 13.6% of aneurysms of internal carotid artery (p<0.01; in 18.2% of patients in the first and 45.8% of patients in the third clinical Hunt and Hess group (p<0.05; in 57.9% of patients with and 20.5% of patients without intraoperative rupture (p<0.01; in 50% of patients with and 18.7% of patients without vasospasm (p<0.05. Average aneurysmal size was 18 mm in group with complications and 10.8 mm in patients with no complications (p<0.05, while average preoperative intervals in these two groups were 20 and 8.7 days (p<0.05. Lethality rate was 25% for the third and 83.3% for the fourth and fifth clinical group (p<0.01, and the existence of complications significantly increased mortality (from 15.7% to 50%, p<0.01. Good outcome existed in 19.2% of operated patients with complications and in 78.3% of those without complications (p<0.01. Conclusions. Incidence of complications depended significantly on preoperative clinical condition, duration of preoperative interval, size, localization and intraoperative rupture of aneurysm. Complications significantly minimized the surgical treatment outcome and increased the lethality rate mortality.

  16. Left ventricular function during lethal and sublethal endotoxemia in swine

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Previous studies suggested that after a median lethal dose (LD50) of endotoxin, cardiac contractility was depressed in nonsurviving dogs. The canine cardiovascular system is unlike humans in that dogs have a hepatic vein sphincter that is susceptible to adrenergic stimulation capable of raising hepatic and splanchnic venous pressures. The authors retested the hypothesis that lethality after endotoxin administration is associated with cardiac contractile depression in pigs, because of the hepatic circulation in this species is similar to that of humans. They compared cardiac mechanical function of pigs administered a high dose (250 μg/kg) or a low dose (100 μg/kg) endotoxin by use of the slope of the end-systolic pressure-diameter relationship (ESPDR) as well as other measurements of cardiac performance. In all the pigs administered a high dose, ESPDR demonstrated a marked, time-dependent depression whereas we observed no significant ESPDR changes after low endotoxin doses. The other cardiodynamic variables were uninterpretable, due to the significant changes in heart rate, end-diastolic diameter (preload), and aortic diastolic pressure (afterload). Plasma myocardia depressant factor activity accumulated in all endotoxin-administered animals, tending to be greater in the high-dose group. In this group, both subendocardial blood flow and global function were depressed, whereas pigs administered the low dose endotoxin demonstrated slight, but nonsignificant, increases in flow and function. These observations indicate that myocardial contractile depression is associated with a lethal outcome to high doses of endotoxin. Myocardial perfusion was measured using radiolabeled microspheres infused into the left atria

  17. 40 CFR 798.5450 - Rodent dominant lethal assay.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-07-01

    ... reporting recommendations as specified under 40 CFR part 792, subpart J the following specific information... 40 Protection of Environment 31 2010-07-01 2010-07-01 true Rodent dominant lethal assay. 798.5450... lethal assay. (a) Purpose. Dominant lethal (DL) effects cause embryonic or fetal death. Induction of...

  18. Toll-Like Receptor 2- and 6-Mediated Stimulation by Macrophage-Activating Lipopeptide 2 Induces Lipopolysaccharide (LPS) Cross Tolerance in Mice, Which Results in Protection from Tumor Necrosis Factor Alpha but in Only Partial Protection from Lethal LPS Doses

    OpenAIRE

    Deiters, Ursula; Gumenscheimer, Marina; Galanos, Chris; Mühlradt, Peter F.

    2003-01-01

    Patients or experimental animals previously exposed to lipopolysaccharide (LPS) become tolerant to further LPS challenge. We investigated the potential of the macrophage-activating lipopeptide 2 (MALP-2) to induce in vivo cross tolerance to tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF-α) and LPS. MALP-2-induced tolerance could be of practical interest, as MALP-2 proved much less pyrogenic in rabbits than LPS. Whereas LPS signals via Toll-like receptor 4 (TLR4), MALP-2 uses TLR2 and TLR6. LPS-mediated cyt...

  19. Lethal midline granuloma syndrome: a diagnostic dilemma

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The rare lethal midline granuloma syndrome is difficult to diagnose because of the wide array of related diseases and lack of knowledge by the majority of physicians. In the present report, the authors describe the case of a patient with this disease, caused by squamous cell carcinoma, drawing attention to differential diagnoses and to clinical and radiological findings that may be useful to define the diagnosis. (author)

  20. Lethal Interpersonal Violence in the Middle Pleistocene

    OpenAIRE

    Nohemi Sala; Juan Luis Arsuaga; Ana Pantoja-Pérez; Adrián Pablos; Ignacio Martínez; Quam, Rolf M.; Asier Gómez-Olivencia; José María Bermúdez de Castro; Eudald Carbonell

    2015-01-01

    Evidence of interpersonal violence has been documented previously in Pleistocene members of the genus Homo, but only very rarely has this been posited as the possible manner of death. Here we report the earliest evidence of lethal interpersonal violence in the hominin fossil record. Cranium 17 recovered from the Sima de los Huesos Middle Pleistocene site shows two clear perimortem depression fractures on the frontal bone, interpreted as being produced by two episodes of localized blunt force ...

  1. Lethal midline granuloma syndrome: a diagnostic dilemma

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ribeiro, Bruno Niemeyer de Freitas; Bahia, Paulo Roberto Valle [Radiology, Hospital Universitario Clementino Fraga Filho - Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro (HUCFF-UFRJ), Rio de Janeiro, RJ (Brazil); Oliveira, Ana Luiza Vianna Sobral de Magalhaes [Resident of Medical Practice, Hospital Federal da Lagoa, Rio de Janeiro, RJ (Brazil); Marchon Junior, Joao Luiz [Unit of Computed Tomography, Hospital Federal da Lagoa, Rio de Janeiro, RJ (Brazil)

    2012-11-15

    The rare lethal midline granuloma syndrome is difficult to diagnose because of the wide array of related diseases and lack of knowledge by the majority of physicians. In the present report, the authors describe the case of a patient with this disease, caused by squamous cell carcinoma, drawing attention to differential diagnoses and to clinical and radiological findings that may be useful to define the diagnosis. (author)

  2. Coconut lethal yellowing phytoplasma disease in Mozambique

    OpenAIRE

    Bila, João

    2016-01-01

    The coconut palm (Cocos nucifera) is a major cash crop that is widely grown in coastal tropical regions of the world, including Mozambique. Outbreaks of coconut lethal yellowing disease (CLYD) are threatening the industry and the livelihood of a large part of the Mozambican population. The aim of this thesis was to study different epidemiological aspects of CLYD in Mozambique. Phylogenetic analyses of the 16S and secA genes were performed on plant and insect samples collected from different a...

  3. Effects of carragheenan on radiation lethality

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The effect of carragheenan, a macrophage-toxic agent, on lethality of irradiated animals was studied in order to elucidate the possible participation of stromal elements on haemopoietic function. Treatment of mice with the agent resulted in an impaired differentiation of CFU sub(c) from CFU sub(s) which is considered to be responsible for the lower survival of the carragheenan-treated animals after irradiation. (author)

  4. Lethal interpersonal violence in the Middle Pleistocene.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sala, Nohemi; Arsuaga, Juan Luis; Pantoja-Pérez, Ana; Pablos, Adrián; Martínez, Ignacio; Quam, Rolf M; Gómez-Olivencia, Asier; Bermúdez de Castro, José María; Carbonell, Eudald

    2015-01-01

    Evidence of interpersonal violence has been documented previously in Pleistocene members of the genus Homo, but only very rarely has this been posited as the possible manner of death. Here we report the earliest evidence of lethal interpersonal violence in the hominin fossil record. Cranium 17 recovered from the Sima de los Huesos Middle Pleistocene site shows two clear perimortem depression fractures on the frontal bone, interpreted as being produced by two episodes of localized blunt force trauma. The type of injuries, their location, the strong similarity of the fractures in shape and size, and the different orientations and implied trajectories of the two fractures suggest they were produced with the same object in face-to-face interpersonal conflict. Given that either of the two traumatic events was likely lethal, the presence of multiple blows implies an intention to kill. This finding shows that the lethal interpersonal violence is an ancient human behavior and has important implications for the accumulation of bodies at the site, supporting an anthropic origin. PMID:26018668

  5. Lethal interpersonal violence in the Middle Pleistocene.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nohemi Sala

    Full Text Available Evidence of interpersonal violence has been documented previously in Pleistocene members of the genus Homo, but only very rarely has this been posited as the possible manner of death. Here we report the earliest evidence of lethal interpersonal violence in the hominin fossil record. Cranium 17 recovered from the Sima de los Huesos Middle Pleistocene site shows two clear perimortem depression fractures on the frontal bone, interpreted as being produced by two episodes of localized blunt force trauma. The type of injuries, their location, the strong similarity of the fractures in shape and size, and the different orientations and implied trajectories of the two fractures suggest they were produced with the same object in face-to-face interpersonal conflict. Given that either of the two traumatic events was likely lethal, the presence of multiple blows implies an intention to kill. This finding shows that the lethal interpersonal violence is an ancient human behavior and has important implications for the accumulation of bodies at the site, supporting an anthropic origin.

  6. The population genetics of synthetic lethals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Phillips, P C; Johnson, N A

    1998-09-01

    Synthetic lethals are variants at different loci that have little or no effect on viability singly but cause lethality in combination. The importance of synthetic lethals and, more generally, of synthetic deleterious loci (SDL) has been controversial. Here, we derive the expected frequencies for SDL under a mutation-selection balance for the complete haploid model and selected cases of the diploid model. We have also obtained simple approximations that demonstrate good fit to exact solutions based on numerical iterations. In the haploid case, equilibrium frequencies of carrier haplotypes (individuals with only a single mutation) are comparable to analogous single-locus results, after allowing for the effects of linkage. Frequencies in the diploid case, however, are much higher and more comparable to the square root of the single-locus results. In particular, when selection operates only on the double-mutant homozygote and linkage is not too tight, the expected frequency of the carriers is approximately the quartic root of the ratio between the mutation rate and the selection coefficient of the synthetics. For a reasonably wide set of models, the frequencies of carriers can be on the order of a few percent. The equilibrium frequencies of these deleterious alleles can be relatively high because, with SDL, both dominance and epistasis act to shield carriers from exposure to selection. We also discuss the possible role of SDL in maintaining genetic variation and in hybrid breakdown. PMID:9725860

  7. In silico and in vitro evaluation of PCR-based assays for the detection of Bacillus anthracis chromosomal signature sequences.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ågren, Joakim; Hamidjaja, Raditijo A; Hansen, Trine; Ruuls, Robin; Thierry, Simon; Vigre, Håkan; Janse, Ingmar; Sundström, Anders; Segerman, Bo; Koene, Miriam; Löfström, Charlotta; Van Rotterdam, Bart; Derzelle, Sylviane

    2013-11-15

    Bacillus anthracis, the causative agent of anthrax, is a zoonotic pathogen that is relatively common throughout the world and may cause life threatening diseases in animals and humans. There are many PCR-based assays in use for the detection of B. anthracis. While most of the developed assays rely on unique markers present on virulence plasmids pXO1 and pXO2, relatively few assays incorporate chromosomal DNA markers due to the close relatedness of B. anthracis to the B. cereus group strains. For the detection of chromosomal DNA, different genes have been used, such as BA813, rpoB, gyrA, plcR, S-layer, and prophage-lambda. Following a review of the literature, an in silico analysis of all signature sequences reported for identification of B. anthracis was conducted. Published primer and probe sequences were compared for specificity against 134 available Bacillus spp. genomes. Although many of the chromosomal targets evaluated are claimed to be specific to B. anthracis, cross-reactions with closely related B. cereus and B. thuringiensis strains were often observed. Of the 35 investigated PCR assays, only 4 were 100% specific for the B. anthracis chromosome. An interlaboratory ring trial among five European laboratories was then performed to evaluate six assays, including the WHO recommended procedures, using a collection of 90 Bacillus strains. Three assays performed adequately, yielding no false positive or negative results. All three assays target chromosomal markers located within the lambdaBa03 prophage region (PL3, BA5345, and BA5357). Detection limit was further assessed for one of these highly specific assays. PMID:24005110

  8. Diminished but Not Abolished Effect of Two His351 Mutants of Anthrax Edema Factor in a Murine Model

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Taoran Zhao

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available Edema toxin (ET, which is composed of a potent adenylate cyclase (AC, edema factor (EF, and protective antigen (PA, is one of the major toxicity factors of Bacillus anthracis. In this study, we introduced mutations in full-length EF to generate alanine EF(H351A and arginine EF(H351R variants. In vitro activity analysis displayed that the adenylyl cyclase activity of both the mutants was significantly diminished compared with the wild-type EF. When the native and mutant toxins were administered subcutaneously in a mouse footpad edema model, severe acute swelling was evoked by wild-type ET, while the symptoms induced by mutant toxins were very minor. Systemic administration of these EF variants caused non-lethal hepatotoxicity. In addition, EF(H351R exhibited slightly higher activity in causing more severe edema than EF(H351A. Our findings demonstrate that the toxicity of ET is not abolished by substitution of EF residue His351 by alanine or arginine. These results also indicate the potential of the mouse footpad edema model as a sensitive method for evaluating both ET toxicity and the efficacy of candidate therapeutic agents.

  9. Diminished but Not Abolished Effect of Two His351 Mutants of Anthrax Edema Factor in a Murine Model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhao, Taoran; Zhao, Xinghui; Liu, Ju; Meng, Yingying; Feng, Yingying; Fang, Ting; Zhang, Jinlong; Yang, Xiuxu; Li, Jianmin; Xu, Junjie; Chen, Wei

    2016-02-01

    Edema toxin (ET), which is composed of a potent adenylate cyclase (AC), edema factor (EF), and protective antigen (PA), is one of the major toxicity factors of Bacillus anthracis. In this study, we introduced mutations in full-length EF to generate alanine EF(H351A) and arginine EF(H351R) variants. In vitro activity analysis displayed that the adenylyl cyclase activity of both the mutants was significantly diminished compared with the wild-type EF. When the native and mutant toxins were administered subcutaneously in a mouse footpad edema model, severe acute swelling was evoked by wild-type ET, while the symptoms induced by mutant toxins were very minor. Systemic administration of these EF variants caused non-lethal hepatotoxicity. In addition, EF(H351R) exhibited slightly higher activity in causing more severe edema than EF(H351A). Our findings demonstrate that the toxicity of ET is not abolished by substitution of EF residue His351 by alanine or arginine. These results also indicate the potential of the mouse footpad edema model as a sensitive method for evaluating both ET toxicity and the efficacy of candidate therapeutic agents. PMID:26848687

  10. Achieving consistent multiple daily low-dose Bacillus anthracis spore inhalation exposures in the rabbit model

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Roy E Barnewall

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available Repeated low-level exposures to Bacillus anthracis could occur before or after the remediation of an environmental release. This is especially true for persistent agents such as Bacillus anthracis spores, the causative agent of anthrax. Studies were conducted to examine aerosol methods needed for consistent daily low aerosol concentrations to deliver a low-dose (less than 106 colony forming units (CFU of B. anthracis spores and included a pilot feasibility characterization study, acute exposure study, and a multiple fifteen day exposure study. This manuscript focuses on the state-of-the-science aerosol methodologies used to generate and aerosolize consistent daily low aerosol concentrations and resultant low inhalation doses. The pilot feasibility characterization study determined that the aerosol system was consistent and capable of producing very low aerosol concentrations. In the acute, single day exposure experiment, targeted inhaled doses of 1 x 102, 1 x 103, 1 x 104, and 1 x 105 CFU were used. In the multiple daily exposure experiment, rabbits were exposed multiple days to targeted inhaled doses of 1 x 102, 1 x 103, and 1 x 104 CFU. In all studies, targeted inhaled doses remained fairly consistent from rabbit to rabbit and day to day. The aerosol system produced aerosolized spores within the optimal mass median aerodynamic diameter particle size range to reach deep lung alveoli. Consistency of the inhaled dose was aided by monitoring and recording respiratory parameters during the exposure with real-time plethysmography. Overall, the presented results show that the animal aerosol system was stable and highly reproducible between different studies and multiple exposure days.

  11. Transcriptional Stimulation of Anthrax Toxin Receptors by Anthrax Edema Toxin and Bacillus anthracis Sterne Spore

    OpenAIRE

    Xu, Qingfu; Hesek, Eric D.; Zeng, Mingtao

    2007-01-01

    We used quantitative real-time RT-PCR to not only investigate the mRNA levels of anthrax toxin receptor 1 (ANTXR1) and 2 (ANTXR2) in the murine J774A.1 macrophage cells and different tissues of mice, but also evaluate the effect of anthrax edema toxin and Bacillus anthracis Sterne spores on the expression of mRNA of these receptors. The mRNA transcripts of both receptors was detected in J774A.1 cells and mouse tissues such as the lung, heart, kidney, spleen, stomach, jejunum, brain, skeleton ...

  12. Protein profiles of field isolates ofBacillus anthracis from different endemic areas of Indonesia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M Bhakti Poerwadikarta

    1998-03-01

    Full Text Available Sonicated cell-free extract proteins of 14 field isolates ofBacillus anthracis from six different endemic areas of Indonesia were analyzed by the use of sodium dodecyl sulphate-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis (SDS-PAGE methods . The protein profiles of each field isolate tested demonstrated slightly different at the protein bands with molecular weights of 18, 37, 52, 65 and 70 kDa, and varied between the field isolates and vaccine strains. The variation could provide clues to the source of anthrax transmission whether it was originated from similar strain or not.

  13. An Essential DnaB Helicase of Bacillus anthracis: Identification, Characterization, and Mechanism of Action▿

    OpenAIRE

    Biswas, Esther E.; Barnes, Marjorie H.; Moir, Donald T.; Biswas, Subhasis B

    2008-01-01

    We have described a novel essential replicative DNA helicase from Bacillus anthracis, the identification of its gene, and the elucidation of its enzymatic characteristics. Anthrax DnaB helicase (DnaBBA) is a 453-amino-acid, 50-kDa polypeptide with ATPase and DNA helicase activities. DnaBBA displayed distinct enzymatic and kinetic properties. DnaBBA has low single-stranded DNA (ssDNA)-dependent ATPase activity but possesses a strong 5′→3′ DNA helicase activity. The stimulation of ATPase activi...

  14. Physical Sequestration of Bacillus anthracis in the Pulmonary Capillaries in Terminal Infection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jouvion, Gregory; Corre, Jean-Philippe; Khun, Huot; Moya-Nilges, Marie; Roux, Pascal; Latroche, Claire; Tournier, Jean-Nicolas; Huerre, Michel; Chrétien, Fabrice; Goossens, Pierre L

    2016-07-15

    The lung is the terminal target of Bacillus anthracis before death, whatever the route of infection (cutaneous, inhalational, or digestive). During a cutaneous infection in absence of toxins, we observed encapsulated bacteria colonizing the alveolar capillary network, bacteria and hemorrhages in alveolar and bronchiolar spaces, and hypoxic foci in the lung (endothelial cells) and brain (neurons and neuropil). Circulating encapsulated bacteria were as chains of approximately 13 µm in length. Bacteria of such size were immediately trapped within the lung capillary network, but bacteria of shorter length were not. Controlling lung-targeted pathology would be beneficial for anthrax treatment. PMID:26977051

  15. Efficacy of Daptomycin against Bacillus anthracis in a Murine Model of Anthrax Spore Inhalation▿

    OpenAIRE

    Heine, Henry S.; Bassett, Jennifer; Miller, Lynda; Purcell, Bret K.; Byrne, W. Russell

    2010-01-01

    Daptomycin demonstrated in vitro (MIC90, 4 μg/ml) and in vivo activities against Bacillus anthracis. Twice-daily treatment with a dose of 50 mg/kg of body weight was begun 24 h after challenge and continued for 14 or 21 days; results were compared to those for controls treated with phosphate-buffered saline or ciprofloxacin. Day 43 survival rates were 6/10 mice for the 14-day and 9/10 mice for the 21-day treatment groups, compared to survival with ciprofloxacin: 8/10 and 9/10 mice, respective...

  16. Importance of srtA and srtB for Growth of Bacillus anthracis in Macrophages

    OpenAIRE

    Zink, Steven D.; Burns, Drusilla L.

    2005-01-01

    We examined the effect of mutation of two sortase genes of Bacillus anthracis, srtA and srtB, on the ability of the bacterium to grow in J774A.1 cells, a mouse macrophage-like cell line. While disruption of either srtA or srtB had no effect on the ability of the bacteria to grow in rich culture media, mutations in each of these genes dramatically attenuated growth of the bacterium in J774A.1 cells. Complementation of the mutation restored the ability of bacteria to grow in the cells. Since th...

  17. The Gottingen Minipig Is a Model of the Hematopoietic Acute Radiation Syndrome: G-Colony Stimulating Factor Stimulates Hematopoiesis and Enhances Survival From Lethal Total-Body γ-Irradiation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Purpose: We are characterizing the Gottingen minipig as an additional large animal model for advanced drug testing for the acute radiation syndrome (ARS) to enhance the discovery and development of novel radiation countermeasures. Among the advantages provided by this model, the similarities to human hematologic parameters and dynamics of cell loss/recovery after irradiation provide a convenient means to compare the efficacy of drugs known to affect bone marrow cellularity and hematopoiesis. Methods and Materials: Male Gottingen minipigs, 4 to 5 months old and weighing 9 to 11 kg, were used for this study. We tested the standard off-label treatment for ARS, rhG-CSF (Neupogen, 10 μg/kg/day for 17 days), at the estimated LD70/30 total-body γ-irradiation (TBI) radiation dose for the hematopoietic syndrome, starting 24 hours after irradiation. Results: The results indicated that granulocyte colony stimulating factor (G-CSF) enhanced survival, stimulated recovery from neutropenia, and induced mobilization of hematopoietic progenitor cells. In addition, the administration of G-CSF resulted in maturation of monocytes/macrophages. Conclusions: These results support continuing efforts toward validation of the minipig as a large animal model for advanced testing of radiation countermeasures and characterization of the pathophysiology of ARS, and they suggest that the efficacy of G-CSF in improving survival after total body irradiation may involve mechanisms other than increasing the numbers of circulating granulocytes

  18. The Gottingen Minipig Is a Model of the Hematopoietic Acute Radiation Syndrome: G-Colony Stimulating Factor Stimulates Hematopoiesis and Enhances Survival From Lethal Total-Body γ-Irradiation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Moroni, Maria, E-mail: maria.moroni@usuhs.edu [Radiation Countermeasures Program, Armed Forces Radiobiology Research Institute, Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences, Bethesda, Maryland (United States); Ngudiankama, Barbara F. [Laboratory of Viral Diseases, National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, Bethesda, Maryland (United States); Christensen, Christine [Division of Comparative Pathology, Armed Forces Radiobiology Research Institute, Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences, Bethesda, Maryland (United States); Olsen, Cara H. [Biostatistics Consulting Center, Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences, Bethesda, Maryland (United States); Owens, Rossitsa [Radiation Countermeasures Program, Armed Forces Radiobiology Research Institute, Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences, Bethesda, Maryland (United States); Lombardini, Eric D. [Veterinary Medicine Department, Armed Forces Research Institute of Medical Sciences, Bangkok (Thailand); Holt, Rebecca K. [Veterinary Science Department, Armed Forces Radiobiology Research Institute, Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences, Bethesda, Maryland (United States); Whitnall, Mark H. [Radiation Countermeasures Program, Armed Forces Radiobiology Research Institute, Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences, Bethesda, Maryland (United States)

    2013-08-01

    Purpose: We are characterizing the Gottingen minipig as an additional large animal model for advanced drug testing for the acute radiation syndrome (ARS) to enhance the discovery and development of novel radiation countermeasures. Among the advantages provided by this model, the similarities to human hematologic parameters and dynamics of cell loss/recovery after irradiation provide a convenient means to compare the efficacy of drugs known to affect bone marrow cellularity and hematopoiesis. Methods and Materials: Male Gottingen minipigs, 4 to 5 months old and weighing 9 to 11 kg, were used for this study. We tested the standard off-label treatment for ARS, rhG-CSF (Neupogen, 10 μg/kg/day for 17 days), at the estimated LD70/30 total-body γ-irradiation (TBI) radiation dose for the hematopoietic syndrome, starting 24 hours after irradiation. Results: The results indicated that granulocyte colony stimulating factor (G-CSF) enhanced survival, stimulated recovery from neutropenia, and induced mobilization of hematopoietic progenitor cells. In addition, the administration of G-CSF resulted in maturation of monocytes/macrophages. Conclusions: These results support continuing efforts toward validation of the minipig as a large animal model for advanced testing of radiation countermeasures and characterization of the pathophysiology of ARS, and they suggest that the efficacy of G-CSF in improving survival after total body irradiation may involve mechanisms other than increasing the numbers of circulating granulocytes.

  19. Lethal Encephalitozoon cuniculi genotype III infection in Steppe lemmings (Lagurus lagurus)

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Hofmannová, L.; Sak, Bohumil; Jekl, V.; Mináriková, A.; Škorič, M.; Kváč, Martin

    2014-01-01

    Roč. 205, 1-2 (2014), s. 357-360. ISSN 0304-4017 R&D Projects: GA ČR(CZ) GAP505/11/1163 Institutional support: RVO:60077344 Keywords : Encephalitozoon cuniculi genotype III * Steppe lemmings * Lethal infection * PCR * Histology Subject RIV: EG - Zoology Impact factor: 2.460, year: 2014

  20. The host response to anthrax lethal toxin: unexpected observations

    OpenAIRE

    Prince, Alice S.

    2003-01-01

    Bacillus anthracis, the causative agent of anthrax, is believed to induce disease and death in humans in an endotoxic shock–like manner. A comprehensive study of the effects of anthrax toxin in mice demonstrates that toxin-induced death is mediated not by cytokine release, as previously thought, but by hypoxia-induced liver failure. The study strongly suggests that the therapies developed for treatment of cytokine-mediated septic shock will not be appropriate for the treatment of anthrax.

  1. Lethal effects of Clostridium perfringens epsilon toxin are potentiated by alpha and perfringolysin-O toxins in a mouse model

    OpenAIRE

    Fernandez-Miyakawa, Mariano E.; Jost, B. Helen; Billington, Stephen J; Uzal, Francisco A.

    2007-01-01

    Epsilon-toxin (ETX) is the most important virulence factor of Clostridium perfringens type D. Two other important toxins, alpha-toxin (CPA) and perfringolysin-O (PFO), are encoded and potentially produced by most C. perfringens type D isolates. The biological effects of these toxins are dissimilar although they are all lethal. Since the possible interaction of these toxins during infection is unknown, the effects of CPA and PFO on the lethal activity of ETX were studied in a mouse model. Mice...

  2. Lethal and non-lethal violence against women in Australia: measurement challenges, conceptual frameworks, and limitations in knowledge.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McPhedran, Samara; Baker, Jeanine

    2012-08-01

    Understanding pathways from non-lethal violence to lethal violence between intimate partners is a notable challenge for both policy and practice in partner violence prevention. Of particular interest is whether lethal violence represents an "escalation" of violence from "low" to "high" risk over time, or is best predicted by specific behavioral "typologies" of perpetrators. Testing the "escalation" and "typology" theories is hampered in Australia by limitations in knowledge about non-lethal and lethal violence against women. This article discusses data limitations, measurement problems, and conceptual shortcomings, and suggests approaches to improving evidence quality in the field of violence prevention and risk assessment. PMID:23008430

  3. Mutation induced extinction in finite populations: lethal mutagenesis and lethal isolation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wylie, C Scott; Shakhnovich, Eugene I

    2012-01-01

    Reproduction is inherently risky, in part because genomic replication can introduce new mutations that are usually deleterious toward fitness. This risk is especially severe for organisms whose genomes replicate "semi-conservatively," e.g. viruses and bacteria, where no master copy of the genome is preserved. Lethal mutagenesis refers to extinction of populations due to an unbearably high mutation rate (U), and is important both theoretically and clinically, where drugs can extinguish pathogens by increasing their mutation rate. Previous theoretical models of lethal mutagenesis assume infinite population size (N). However, in addition to high U, small N can accelerate extinction by strengthening genetic drift and relaxing selection. Here, we examine how the time until extinction depends jointly on N and U. We first analytically compute the mean time until extinction (τ) in a simplistic model where all mutations are either lethal or neutral. The solution motivates the definition of two distinct regimes: a survival phase and an extinction phase, which differ dramatically in both how τ scales with N and in the coefficient of variation in time until extinction. Next, we perform stochastic population-genetics simulations on a realistic fitness landscape that both (i) features an epistatic distribution of fitness effects that agrees with experimental data on viruses and (ii) is based on the biophysics of protein folding. More specifically, we assume that mutations inflict fitness penalties proportional to the extent that they unfold proteins. We find that decreasing N can cause phase transition-like behavior from survival to extinction, which motivates the concept of "lethal isolation." Furthermore, we find that lethal mutagenesis and lethal isolation interact synergistically, which may have clinical implications for treating infections. Broadly, we conclude that stably folded proteins are only possible in ecological settings that support sufficiently large populations

  4. Mutation induced extinction in finite populations: lethal mutagenesis and lethal isolation.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    C Scott Wylie

    Full Text Available Reproduction is inherently risky, in part because genomic replication can introduce new mutations that are usually deleterious toward fitness. This risk is especially severe for organisms whose genomes replicate "semi-conservatively," e.g. viruses and bacteria, where no master copy of the genome is preserved. Lethal mutagenesis refers to extinction of populations due to an unbearably high mutation rate (U, and is important both theoretically and clinically, where drugs can extinguish pathogens by increasing their mutation rate. Previous theoretical models of lethal mutagenesis assume infinite population size (N. However, in addition to high U, small N can accelerate extinction by strengthening genetic drift and relaxing selection. Here, we examine how the time until extinction depends jointly on N and U. We first analytically compute the mean time until extinction (τ in a simplistic model where all mutations are either lethal or neutral. The solution motivates the definition of two distinct regimes: a survival phase and an extinction phase, which differ dramatically in both how τ scales with N and in the coefficient of variation in time until extinction. Next, we perform stochastic population-genetics simulations on a realistic fitness landscape that both (i features an epistatic distribution of fitness effects that agrees with experimental data on viruses and (ii is based on the biophysics of protein folding. More specifically, we assume that mutations inflict fitness penalties proportional to the extent that they unfold proteins. We find that decreasing N can cause phase transition-like behavior from survival to extinction, which motivates the concept of "lethal isolation." Furthermore, we find that lethal mutagenesis and lethal isolation interact synergistically, which may have clinical implications for treating infections. Broadly, we conclude that stably folded proteins are only possible in ecological settings that support sufficiently

  5. Genomic analysis of three African strains of Bacillus anthracis demonstrates that they are part of the clonal expansion of an exclusively pathogenic bacterium.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rouli, L; MBengue, M; Robert, C; Ndiaye, M; La Scola, B; Raoult, D

    2014-11-01

    Bacillus anthracis is the causative agent of anthrax and is classified as a 'Category A' biological weapon. Six complete genomes of B. anthracis (A0248, Ames, Ames Ancestor, CDC684, H0491, and Sterne) are currently available. In this report, we add three African strain genomes: Sen2Col2, Sen3 and Gmb1. To study the pan-genome of B. anthracis, we used bioinformatics tools, such as Cluster of Orthologous Groups, and performed phylogenetic analysis. We found that the three African strains contained the pX01 and pX02 plasmids, the nonsense mutation in the plcR gene and the four known prophages. These strains are most similar to the CDC684 strain and belong to the A cluster. We estimated that the B. anthracis pan-genome has 2893 core genes (99% of the genome size) and 85 accessory genes. We validated the hypothesis that B. anthracis has a closed pan-genome and found that the three African strains carry the two plasmids associated with bacterial virulence. The pan-genome nature of B. anthracis confirms its lack of exchange (similar to Clostridium tetani) and supports its exclusively pathogenic role, despite its survival in the environment. Moreover, thanks to the study of the core content single nucleotide polymorphisms, we can see that our three African strains diverged very recently from the other B. anthracis strains. PMID:25566394

  6. Genomic analysis of three African strains of Bacillus anthracis demonstrates that they are part of the clonal expansion of an exclusively pathogenic bacterium

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    L. Rouli

    2014-11-01

    Full Text Available Bacillus anthracis is the causative agent of anthrax and is classified as a ‘Category A’ biological weapon. Six complete genomes of B. anthracis (A0248, Ames, Ames Ancestor, CDC684, H0491, and Sterne are currently available. In this report, we add three African strain genomes: Sen2Col2, Sen3 and Gmb1. To study the pan‐genome of B. anthracis, we used bioinformatics tools, such as Cluster of Orthologous Groups, and performed phylogenetic analysis. We found that the three African strains contained the pX01 and pX02 plasmids, the nonsense mutation in the plcR gene and the four known prophages. These strains are most similar to the CDC684 strain and belong to the A cluster. We estimated that the B. anthracis pan‐genome has 2893 core genes (99% of the genome size and 85 accessory genes. We validated the hypothesis that B. anthracis has a closed pan‐genome and found that the three African strains carry the two plasmids associated with bacterial virulence. The pan‐genome nature of B. anthracis confirms its lack of exchange (similar to Clostridium tetani and supports its exclusively pathogenic role, despite its survival in the environment. Moreover, thanks to the study of the core content single nucleotide polymorphisms, we can see that our three African strains diverged very recently from the other B. anthracis strains.

  7. Ultrasensitive electrochemical immunoassay for surface array protein, a Bacillus anthracis biomarker using Au-Pd nanocrystals loaded on boron-nitride nanosheets as catalytic labels.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sharma, Mukesh Kumar; Narayanan, J; Pardasani, Deepak; Srivastava, Divesh N; Upadhyay, Sanjay; Goel, Ajay Kumar

    2016-06-15

    Bacillus anthracis, the causative agent of anthrax, is a well known bioterrorism agent. The determination of surface array protein (Sap), a unique biomarker for B. anthracis can offer an opportunity for specific detection of B. anthracis in culture broth. In this study, we designed a new catalytic bionanolabel and fabricated a novel electrochemical immunosensor for ultrasensitive detection of B. anthracis Sap antigen. Bimetallic gold-palladium nanoparticles were in-situ grown on poly (diallyldimethylammonium chloride) functionalized boron nitride nanosheets (Au-Pd NPs@BNNSs) and conjugated with the mouse anti-B. anthracis Sap antibodies (Ab2); named Au-Pd NPs@BNNSs/Ab2. The resulting Au-Pd NPs@BNNSs/Ab2 bionanolabel demonstrated high catalytic activity towards reduction of 4-nitrophenol. The sensitivity of the electrochemical immunosensor along with redox cycling of 4-aminophenol to 4-quinoneimine was improved to a great extent. Under optimal conditions, the proposed immunosensor exhibited a wide working range from 5 pg/mL to 100 ng/mL with a minimum detection limit of 1 pg/mL B. anthracis Sap antigen. The practical applicability of the immunosensor was demonstrated by specific detection of Sap secreted by the B. anthracis in culture broth just after 1h of growth. These labels open a new direction for the ultrasensitive detection of different biological warfare agents and their markers in different matrices. PMID:26874112

  8. Susceptibility to anthrax lethal toxin-induced rat death is controlled by a single chromosome 10 locus that includes rNlrp1.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zachary L Newman

    2010-05-01

    Full Text Available Anthrax lethal toxin (LT is a bipartite protease-containing toxin and a key virulence determinant of Bacillus anthracis. In mice, LT causes the rapid lysis of macrophages isolated from certain inbred strains, but the correlation between murine macrophage sensitivity and mouse strain susceptibility to toxin challenge is poor. In rats, LT induces a rapid death in as little as 37 minutes through unknown mechanisms. We used a recombinant inbred (RI rat panel of 19 strains generated from LT-sensitive and LT-resistant progenitors to map LT sensitivity in rats to a locus on chromosome 10 that includes the inflammasome NOD-like receptor (NLR sensor, Nlrp1. This gene is the closest rat homolog of mouse Nlrp1b, which was previously shown to control murine macrophage sensitivity to LT. An absolute correlation between in vitro macrophage sensitivity to LT-induced lysis and animal susceptibility to the toxin was found for the 19 RI strains and 12 additional rat strains. Sequencing Nlrp1 from these strains identified five polymorphic alleles. Polymorphisms within the N-terminal 100 amino acids of the Nlrp1 protein were perfectly correlated with LT sensitivity. These data suggest that toxin-mediated lethality in rats as well as macrophage sensitivity in this animal model are controlled by a single locus on chromosome 10 that is likely to be the inflammasome NLR sensor, Nlrp1.

  9. Development of an embryonic lethality system for transgenic SIT in the fruit pest, Ceratitis capitata

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Full text: An approach to cause sterility was designed without interfering with spermatogenesis to maintain males and their sperm as competitive as possible. We followed a strategy, which is based on the expression of a lethal factor under the control of a promoter that is active at early blastoderm stages. If the male has been homozygous for this gene construct, each fertilization event will lead to embryonic lethality. The advantage of this approach lies in the proposed high competitiveness of such males, since none of their reproductive organs will be touched and matings actually lead to sperm transfer. However, it will be very important that the promoter is active only in early stages of development. Then the lethal phase can be overcome while developing under permissive conditions in the rearing facilities, whereas after release non-permissive conditions will not affect the males themselves but only their progeny. In this respect we were able to successfully establish a suppressible embryonic lethality system to generate competitive males for a transgenic Sterile Insect Technique (Horn and Wimmer, 2003. Nature Biotechnology 21, 64-70). In this publication, we report the first transgene-based, embryonic lethality system, which makes it possible to generate large quantities of competitive but sterile insects without the need of irradiation. The system employs the ectopic expression of a hyperactive proapoptotic gene that causes embryospecific lethality when driven by the tetracycline-controlled transactivator tTA under the regulation of a cellularization gene enhancer/promoter. We have successfully tested this system in Drosophila melanogaster. The embryonic lethality can be suppressed maternally, which will allow for combination with transgenic female-specific lethality systems to raise vigorous, but sterile males only. Currently we are examining, if the embryonic lethality system to generate sterile but competitive insects can be transferred to tephritid fruit

  10. A Study on molecular characterization of Razi Bacillus anthracis Sterne 34F2 substrain in Iran

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tadayon, K.

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available Anthrax, a zoonotic disease caused by Bacillus anthracis, has affected humans since ancient times. For genomic characterization of Razi B. anthracis Sterne 34F2 substrain, single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP genotyping method developed by Van Erth, variable-number tandem-repeat (VNTR-8 analysis proposed by Keim, and multiple-locus VNTR analysis (MLVA-3 introduced by Levy were employed. In the SNPs typing system, where the nucleotide content of the genome at 13 evolutionary canonical loci was collectively analyzed, the originally South African 34F2 substrain was categorized in the A.Br.001/002 subgroup. In the VNTR-8 analysis, fragments with lengths of 314, 229, 162, 580, 532, 158, and 137 bp were identified at the following loci: vrrA, vrrB1, vrrB2, vrrC1, vrrC2, CG3, and pxO1, respectively. In addition, application of Levy's MLVA-3 genotyping method revealed that the genome of this strain carried 941, 451, and 864 bp fragments at AA03, AJ03, and AA07 loci, respectively. The present findings are undoubtedly helpful in meeting the requirements set by the World Organization for Animal Health (OIE and World Health Organization (WHO for anthrax vaccine manufacturers including Razi Institute. However, further similar studies are required to promote the current epidemiological knowledge of anthrax in Iran.

  11. Identification of the immunogenic spore and vegetative proteins of Bacillus anthracis vaccine strain A16R.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xiankai Liu

    Full Text Available Immunoproteomics was used to screen the immunogenic spore and vegetative proteins of Bacillus anthracis vaccine strain A16R. The spore and vegetative proteins were separated by 2D gel electrophoresis and transferred to polyvinylidene difluoride membranes, and then western blotting was performed with rabbit immune serum against B.anthracis live spores. Immunogenic spots were cut and digested by trypsin. Matrix-assisted laser desorption ionization time-of-flight mass spectrometry was performed to identify the proteins. As a result, 11 and 45 immunogenic proteins were identified in the spores and vegetative cells, respectively; 26 of which have not been reported previously. To verify their immunogenicity, 12 of the identified proteins were selected to be expressed, and the immune sera from the mice vaccinated by the 12 expressed proteins, except BA0887, had a specific western blot band with the A16R whole cellular lytic proteins. Some of these immunogenic proteins might be used as novel vaccine candidates themselves or for enhancing the protective efficacy of a protective-antigen-based vaccine.

  12. Improved Proteomic Analysis Following Trichloroacetic Acid Extraction of Bacillus anthracis Spore Proteins

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kaiser, Brooke LD; Wunschel, David S.; Sydor, Michael A.; Warner, Marvin G.; Wahl, Karen L.; Hutchison, Janine R.

    2015-08-07

    Proteomic analysis of bacterial samples provides valuable information about cellular responses and functions under different environmental pressures. Proteomic analysis is dependent upon efficient extraction of proteins from bacterial samples without introducing bias toward extraction of particular protein classes. While no single method can recover 100% of the bacterial proteins, selected protocols can improve overall protein isolation, peptide recovery, or enrich for certain classes of proteins. The method presented here is technically simple and does not require specialized equipment such as a mechanical disrupter. Our data reveal that for particularly challenging samples, such as B. anthracis Sterne spores, trichloroacetic acid extraction improved the number of proteins identified within a sample compared to bead beating (714 vs 660, respectively). Further, TCA extraction enriched for 103 known spore specific proteins whereas bead beating resulted in 49 unique proteins. Analysis of C. botulinum samples grown to 5 days, composed of vegetative biomass and spores, showed a similar trend with improved protein yields and identification using our method compared to bead beating. Interestingly, easily lysed samples, such as B. anthracis vegetative cells, were equally as effectively processed via TCA and bead beating, but TCA extraction remains the easiest and most cost effective option. As with all assays, supplemental methods such as implementation of an alternative preparation method may provide additional insight to the protein biology of the bacteria being studied.

  13. Laboratory studies on surface sampling of Bacillus anthracis contamination: summary, gaps, and recommendations

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Piepel, Gregory F.; Amidan, Brett G.; Hu, Rebecca

    2012-12-01

    This article summarizes previous laboratory studies to characterize the performance of methods for collecting, storing/transporting, processing, and analyzing samples from surfaces contaminated by Bacillus anthracis or related surrogates. The focus is on plate culture and count estimates of surface contamination for swab, wipe, and vacuum samples of porous and nonporous surfaces. Summaries of the previous studies and their results were assessed to identify gaps in information needed as inputs to calculate key parameters critical to risk management in biothreat incidents. One key parameter is the number of samples needed to make characterization or clearance decisions with specified statistical confidence. Other key parameters include the ability to calculate, following contamination incidents, the 1) estimates of Bacillus anthracis contamination, as well as the bias and uncertainties in the estimates, and 2) confidence in characterization and clearance decisions for contaminated or decontaminated buildings. Gaps in knowledge and understanding identified during the summary of the studies are discussed. Recommendations are given for future evaluations of data from existing studies and possible new studies.

  14. Gene expression profiling of human alveolar macrophages infected by B. anthracis spores demonstrates TNF-α and NF-κb are key components of the innate immune response to the pathogen

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hurst Robert E

    2009-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Bacillus anthracis, the etiologic agent of anthrax, has recently been used as an agent of bioterrorism. The innate immune system initially appears to contain the pathogen at the site of entry. Because the human alveolar macrophage (HAM plays a key role in lung innate immune responses, studying the HAM response to B. anthracis is important in understanding the pathogenesis of the pulmonary form of this disease. Methods In this paper, the transcriptional profile of B. anthracis spore-treated HAM was compared with that of mock-infected cells, and differentially expressed genes were identified by Affymetrix microarray analysis. A portion of the results were verified by Luminex protein analysis. Results The majority of genes modulated by spores were upregulated, and a lesser number were downregulated. The differentially expressed genes were subjected to Ingenuity Pathway analysis, the Database for Annotation, Visualization and Integrated Discovery (DAVID analysis, the Promoter Analysis and Interaction Network Toolset (PAINT and Oncomine analysis. Among the upregulated genes, we identified a group of chemokine ligand, apoptosis, and, interestingly, keratin filament genes. Central hubs regulating the activated genes were TNF-α, NF-κB and their ligands/receptors. In addition to TNF-α, a broad range of cytokines was induced, and this was confirmed at the level of translation by Luminex multiplex protein analysis. PAINT analysis revealed that many of the genes affected by spores contain the binding site for c-Rel, a member of the NF-κB family of transcription factors. Other transcription regulatory elements contained in many of the upregulated genes were c-Myb, CP2, Barbie Box, E2F and CRE-BP1. However, many of the genes are poorly annotated, indicating that they represent novel functions. Four of the genes most highly regulated by spores have only previously been associated with head and neck and lung carcinomas. Conclusion The

  15. Role of Toxin Functional Domains in Anthrax Pathogenesis

    OpenAIRE

    Brossier, Fabien; Weber-Levy, Martine; Mock, Michele; SIRARD, Jean-Claude

    2000-01-01

    We investigated the role of the functional domains of anthrax toxins during infection. Three proteins produced by Bacillus anthracis, the protective antigen (PA), the lethal factor (LF), and the edema factor (EF), combine in pairs to produce the lethal (PA+LF) and edema (PA+EF) toxins. A genetic strategy was developed to introduce by allelic exchange specific point mutations or in-frame deletions into B. anthracis toxin genes, thereby impairing either LF metalloprotease or EF adenylate cyclas...

  16. Bacillus anthracis Diversity and Geographic Potential across Nigeria, Cameroon and Chad: Further Support of a Novel West African Lineage.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jason K Blackburn

    Full Text Available Zoonoses, diseases affecting both humans and animals, can exert tremendous pressures on human and veterinary health systems, particularly in resource limited countries. Anthrax is one such zoonosis of concern and is a disease requiring greater public health attention in Nigeria. Here we describe the genetic diversity of Bacillus anthracis in Nigeria and compare it to Chad, Cameroon and a broader global dataset based on the multiple locus variable number tandem repeat (MLVA-25 genetic typing system. Nigerian B. anthracis isolates had identical MLVA genotypes and could only be resolved by measuring highly mutable single nucleotide repeats (SNRs. The Nigerian MLVA genotype was identical or highly genetically similar to those in the neighboring countries, confirming the strains belong to this unique West African lineage. Interestingly, sequence data from a Nigerian isolate shares the anthrose deficient genotypes previously described for strains in this region, which may be associated with vaccine evasion. Strains in this study were isolated over six decades, indicating a high level of temporal strain stability regionally. Ecological niche models were used to predict the geographic distribution of the pathogen for all three countries. We describe a west-east habitat corridor through northern Nigeria extending into Chad and Cameroon. Ecological niche models and genetic results show B. anthracis to be ecologically established in Nigeria. These findings expand our understanding of the global B. anthracis population structure and can guide regional anthrax surveillance and control planning.

  17. Sporulation and germination gene expression analysis of Bacillus anthracis Sterne spores in skim milk under heat and different intervention techniques

    Science.gov (United States)

    To investigate how B. anthracis Stene spores survive in milk under heat (80 degree C, 10 minutes), pasteurization (72 degree C, 15 seconds) and pasteurization plus microfiltration, the expression levels of genes that related to sporulation and germination were tested using real-time PCR assays. Tw...

  18. Glycosylation of BclA Glycoprotein from Bacillus cereus and Bacillus anthracis Exosporium Is Domain-specific.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maes, Emmanuel; Krzewinski, Frederic; Garenaux, Estelle; Lequette, Yannick; Coddeville, Bernadette; Trivelli, Xavier; Ronse, Annette; Faille, Christine; Guerardel, Yann

    2016-04-29

    The spores of the Bacillus cereus group (B. cereus, Bacillus anthracis, and Bacillus thuringiensis) are surrounded by a paracrystalline flexible yet resistant layer called exosporium that plays a major role in spore adhesion and virulence. The major constituent of its hairlike surface, the trimerized glycoprotein BclA, is attached to the basal layer through an N-terminal domain. It is then followed by a repetitive collagen-like neck bearing a globular head (C-terminal domain) that promotes glycoprotein trimerization. The collagen-like region of B. anthracis is known to be densely substituted by unusual O-glycans that may be used for developing species-specific diagnostics of B. anthracis spores and thus targeted therapeutic interventions. In the present study, we have explored the species and domain specificity of BclA glycosylation within the B. cereus group. First, we have established that the collagen-like regions of both B. anthracis and B. cereus are similarly substituted by short O-glycans that bear the species-specific deoxyhexose residues anthrose and the newly observed cereose, respectively. Second we have discovered that the C-terminal globular domains of BclA from both species are substituted by polysaccharide-like O-linked glycans whose structures are also species-specific. The presence of large carbohydrate polymers covering the surface of Bacillus spores may have a profound impact on the way that spores regulate their interactions with biotic and abiotic surfaces and represents potential new diagnostic targets. PMID:26921321

  19. Reagent-free and portable detection of Bacillus anthracis spores using a microfluidic incubator and smartphone microscope

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hutchison, Janine R.; Erikson, Rebecca L.; Sheen, Allison M.; Ozanich, Richard M.; Kelly, Ryan T.

    2015-08-06

    Rapid, cost-effective bacterial detection systems are needed to respond to potential biothreat events. Here we report the use of smartphone-based microscopy in combination with a simple microfluidic incubation device to detect 5000 Bacillus anthracis spores in 3 hours. This field-deployable approach is compatible with real-time PCR for secondary confirmation.

  20. Technical Note: Simple, scalable, and sensitive protocol for retrieving Bacillus anthracis (and other live bacteria) from heroin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grass, Gregor; Ahrens, Bjoern; Schleenbecker, Uwe; Dobrzykowski, Linda; Wagner, Matthias; Krüger, Christian; Wölfel, Roman

    2016-02-01

    We describe a culture-based method suitable for isolating Bacillus anthracis and other live bacteria from heroin. This protocol was developed as a consequence of the bioforensic need to retrieve bacteria from batches of the drug associated with cases of injectional anthrax among heroin-consumers in Europe. This uncommon manifestation of infection with the notorious pathogen B. anthracis has resulted in 26 deaths between the years 2000 to 2013. Thus far, no life disease agent has been isolated from heroin during forensic investigations surrounding these incidences. Because of the conjectured very small number of disease-causing endospores in the contaminated drug it is likely that too few target sequences are available for molecular genetic analysis. Therefore, a direct culture-based approach was chosen here. Endospores of attenuated B. anthracis artificially spiked into heroin were successfully retrieved at 84-98% recovery rates using a wash solution consisting of 0.5% Tween 20 in water. Using this approach, 82 samples of un-cut heroin originating from the German Federal Criminal Police Office's heroin analysis program seized during the period between 2000 and 2014 were tested and found to be surprisingly poor in retrievable bacteria. Notably, while no B. anthracis was isolated from the drug batches, other bacteria were successfully cultured. The resulting methodical protocol is therefore suitable for analyzing un-cut heroin which can be anticipated to comprise the original microbiota from the drug's original source without interference from contaminations introduced by cutting. PMID:26734987

  1. Antimicrobial properties of CuO nanorods and multi-armed nanoparticles against B. anthracis vegetative cells and endospores

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pratibha Pandey

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available Two different kinds of CuO nanoparticles (NPs namely CuO nanorods (PS2 and multi-armed nanoparticles (P5 were synthesized by wet and electrochemical routes, respectively. Their structure, morphology, size and compositions were characterized by SEM, EDX and XRD. The NPs demonstrated strong bactericidal potential against Bacillus anthracis cells and endospores. PS2 killed 92.17% of 4.5 × 104 CFU/mL B. anthracis cells within 1 h at a dose of 1 mg/mL. Whereas P5 showed a higher efficacy by killing 99.92% of 7 × 105 CFU/mL B. anthracis cells within 30 min at a dose of 0.5 mg/mL and 99.6% of 1.25 × 104 CFU/mL B. anthracis cells within 5 min at a dose of 2 mg/mL. More than 99% of spores were killed within 8 h with 2 mg/mL PS2 in LB media.

  2. Effect of pH on the Electrophoretic Mobility of Spores of Bacillus anthracis and Its Surrogates in Aqueous Solutions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Electrophoretic mobility (EPM) of endospores of Bacillus anthracis and surrogates were measured in aqueous solution across a broad pH range and several ionic strengths. EPM values trended around phylogenetic clustering based on the 16S rRNA gene. Measurements reported here prov...

  3. In silico and in vitro evaluation of PCR-based assays for the detection of Bacillus anthracis chromosomal signature sequences

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ågren, Joakim; Hamidjaja, Raditijo A.; Hansen, Trine;

    2013-01-01

    -layer, and prophage-lambda. Following a review of the literature, an in silico analysis of all signature sequences reported for identification of B. anthracis was conducted. Published primer and probe sequences were compared for specificity against 134 available Bacillus spp. genomes. Although many of the chromosomal...

  4. Bacterial spores as possible contaminants of biomedical materials and devices. [Bacillus anthracis, clostridium botulinum, C. perfringens, C. tetani

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Grecz, N.; Kang, T.

    1973-01-01

    Destruction of spores on biomedical devices in drugs, and biologicals is essential for prevention of infection of patients with pathogenic sporeformers. Of particular concern are Clostridium tetani, C. perfringens, C. botulinum, Bacillus anthracis and other sporeforming pathogens. Spores are ubiquitous in nature and contamination of biomedical devices varies depending on manufacturing process, handling, raw materials and other variables. In the last 20 years the number of cases per year of specific notifiable diseases in the United States was as follows: tetanus, 120 to 500 cases, botulism, 7 to 47 cases, and anthrax, 2 to 10 cases. Gas gangrene is caused by a mixed flora consisting predominantly of sporeformers. C botulinum, which usually acts as saprophytic agent of food poisoning, may also initiate pathogenic processes; there are nine cases on record in the United States of botulism wound infections almost half of which ended in death. The spores of these organisms are distinguished by high radiation resistance and their erradication often requires severe radiation treatments. Representative bacterial spores in various suspending media show D/sub 10/ values (dose necessary to destroy 90 percent of a given population) ranging from approximately 0.1 to 0.4 Mrad. Some viruses show D/sub 10/ values up to greater than 1 Mrad. The D/sub 10/-values of spores vary depending on physical, chemical and biological factors. This variability is important in evaluation and selection of biological indicator organisms. Radiation sterilization of biomedical devices and biomedical materials must provide safety from infectious microorganisms including radiation resistant spores and viruses.

  5. Potential lethal and non-lethal effects of predators on dispersal of spider mites.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Otsuki, Hatsune; Yano, Shuichi

    2014-11-01

    Predators can affect prey dispersal lethally by direct consumption or non-lethally by making prey hesitate to disperse. These lethal and non-lethal effects are detectable only in systems where prey can disperse between multiple patches. However, most studies have drawn their conclusions concerning the ability of predatory mites to suppress spider mites based on observations of their interactions on a single patch or on heavily infested host plants where spider mites could hardly disperse toward intact patches. In these systems, specialist predatory mites that penetrate protective webs produced by spider mites quickly suppress the spider mites, whereas generalist predators that cannot penetrate the webs were ineffective. By using a connected patch system, we revealed that a generalist ant, Pristomyrmex punctatus Mayr (Hymenoptera: Formicidae), effectively prevented dispersal of spider mites, Tetranychus kanzawai Kishida (Acari: Tetranychidae), by directly consuming dispersing individuals. We also revealed that a generalist predatory mite, Euseius sojaensis Ehara (Acari: Phytoseiidae), prevented between-patch dispersal of T. kanzawai by making them hesitate to disperse. In contrast, a specialist phytoseiid predatory mite, Neoseiulus womersleyi Schicha, allowed spider mites to escape an initial patch, increasing the number of colonized patches within the system. Our results suggest that ants and generalist predatory mites can effectively suppress Tetranychus species under some conditions, and should receive more attention as agents for conservation biological control in agroecosystems. PMID:24867061

  6. Tityus serrulatus venom--A lethal cocktail.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pucca, Manuela Berto; Cerni, Felipe Augusto; Pinheiro Junior, Ernesto Lopes; Bordon, Karla de Castro Figueiredo; Amorim, Fernanda Gobbi; Cordeiro, Francielle Almeida; Longhim, Heloisa Tavoni; Cremonez, Caroline Marroni; Oliveira, Guilherme Honda; Arantes, Eliane Candiani

    2015-12-15

    Tityus serrulatus (Ts) is the main scorpion species of medical importance in Brazil. Ts venom is composed of several compounds such as mucus, inorganic salts, lipids, amines, nucleotides, enzymes, kallikrein inhibitor, natriuretic peptide, proteins with high molecular mass, peptides, free amino acids and neurotoxins. Neurotoxins are considered the most responsible for the envenoming syndrome due to their pharmacological action on ion channels such as voltage-gated sodium (Nav) and potassium (Kv) channels. The major goal of this review is to present important advances in Ts envenoming research, correlating both the crude Ts venom and isolated toxins with alterations observed in all human systems. The most remarkable event lies in the Ts induced massive releasing of neurotransmitters influencing, directly or indirectly, the entire body. Ts venom proved to extremely affect nervous and muscular systems, to modulate the immune system, to induce cardiac disorders, to cause pulmonary edema, to decrease urinary flow and to alter endocrine, exocrine, reproductive, integumentary, skeletal and digestive functions. Therefore, Ts venom possesses toxins affecting all anatomic systems, making it a lethal cocktail. However, its low lethality may be due to the low venom mass injected, to the different venom compositions, the body characteristics and health conditions of the victim and the local of Ts sting. Furthermore, we also described the different treatments employed during envenoming cases. In particular, throughout the review, an effort will be made to provide information from an extensive documented studies concerning Ts venom in vitro, in animals and in humans (a total of 151 references). PMID:26522893

  7. Lethal domestic violence in eastern North Carolina.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gilliland, M G; Spence, P R; Spence, R L

    2000-01-01

    Strategies for preventing domestic violence can be tailored to a particular geographic or socioeconomic area if the patterns of domestic violence in the area are known. National statistics, although widely available, may not be applicable to a specific region. We reviewed homicide deaths in Eastern North Carolina between 1978 and 1999 to identify patterns in this rural area. Approximately 20% of the homicide deaths in eastern North Carolina are caused by intimate partners. Women accounted for 53% of the victims in 1976, similar to national figures but not rising to 72% as seen nationally in 1998. Latinos are an increasing presence in the area, but had only one recorded episode of lethal violence against an intimate partner. Gunshots accounted for most of the deaths (59% in men, 72% in women). Knowledge of such patterns can assist in selecting prevention strategies for this particular area. Over the last 25 years increasing attention has been devoted to domestic violence (DV), initially defined as abuse committed against a spouse, former spouse, fiancée, boy- or girlfriend, or cohabitant. As time has passed, the definition has been broadened to include other family members--elders, children, and siblings. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) now uses the term "intimate partner violence" for intentional emotional or physical abuse inflicted by a spouse, ex-spouse, a present or former boy- or girlfriend, or date. For the purposes of this paper, we consider DV interchangeable with intimate partner violence. There has been a national concern that abusive events are under-reported. The National Crime Victimization Survey, an anonymous household survey, indicated nearly 1 million incidents of non-lethal intimate partner violence per year between 1992 and 1996. The number decreased from 1.1 million in 1993 to 840,000 in 1996. Attempts to validate such data for a given geographic area often require subjects to violate anonymity--this may account for lower

  8. Development of an edema factor-mediated cAMP-induction bioassay for detecting antibody-mediated neutralization of anthrax protective antigen.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zmuda, Jonathan F; Zhang, Linyi; Richards, Terri; Pham, Quyen; Zukauskas, David; Pierre, Jennifer L; Laird, Michael W; Askins, Janine; Choi, Gil H

    2005-03-01

    Intoxication of mammalian cells by Bacillus anthracis requires the coordinate activity of three distinct bacterial proteins: protective antigen (PA), edema factor (EF), and lethal factor (LF). Among these proteins, PA has become the major focus of work on monoclonal antibodies and vaccines designed to treat or prevent anthrax infection since neither EF nor LF is capable of inducing cellular toxicity in its absence. Here, we present the development of a sensitive, precise, and biologically relevant bioassay platform capable of quantifying antibody-mediated PA neutralization. This bioassay is based on the ability of PA to bind and shuttle EF, a bacterial adenylate cyclase, into mammalian cells leading to an increase in cAMP that can be quantified using a sensitive chemiluminescent ELISA. The results of this study indicate that the cAMP-induction assay possesses the necessary performance characteristics for use as both a potency-indicating release assay in a quality control setting and as a surrogate pharmacodynamic marker for ensuring the continued bioactivity of therapeutic antibodies against PA during clinical trials. PMID:15847796

  9. Bacillus anthracis spore interactions with mammalian cells: Relationship between germination state and the outcome of in vitro

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stojkovic Bojana

    2011-02-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background During inhalational anthrax, internalization of Bacillus anthracis spores by host cells within the lung is believed to be a key step for initiating the transition from the localized to disseminated stages of infection. Despite compelling in vivo evidence that spores remain dormant within the bronchioalveolar spaces of the lungs, and germinate only after uptake into host cells, most in vitro studies of infection have been conducted under conditions that promote rapid germination of spores within the culture medium. Results Using an in vitro model of infection, we evaluated the influence of the germination state of B. anthracis spores, as controlled by defined culture conditions, on the outcome of infection. Spores prepared from B. anthracis Sterne 7702 germinated in a variety of common cell culture media supplemented with fetal bovine serum (FBS while, in the absence of FBS, germination was strictly dependent on medium composition. RAW264.7 macrophage-like cells internalized spores to the same extent in either germinating or non-germinating media. However, significantly more viable, intracellular B. anthracis were recovered from cells infected under non-germinating conditions compared to germinating conditions. At the same time, RAW264.7 cells demonstrated a significant loss in viability when infected under non-germinating conditions. Conclusions These results suggest that the outcome of host cell infection is sensitive to the germination state of spores at the time of uptake. Moreover, this study demonstrates the efficacy of studying B. anthracis spore infection of host cells within a defined, non-germinating, in vitro environment.

  10. Mapping Genetically Compensatory Pathways from Synthetic Lethal Interactions in Yeast

    OpenAIRE

    Ma, Xiaotu; Tarone, Aaron M.; Li, Wenyuan

    2008-01-01

    Background Synthetic lethal genetic interaction analysis has been successfully applied to predicting the functions of genes and their pathway identities. In the context of synthetic lethal interaction data alone, the global similarity of synthetic lethal interaction patterns between two genes is used to predict gene function. With physical interaction data, such as protein-protein interactions, the enrichment of physical interactions within subsets of genes and the enrichment of synthetic let...

  11. Structural Analysis of a Putative Aminoglycoside N-Acetyltransferase from Bacillus anthracis

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Klimecka, Maria M.; Chruszcz, Maksymilian; Font, Jose; Skarina, Tatiana; Shumilin, Igor; Onopryienko, Olena; Porebski, Przemyslaw J.; Cymborowski, Marcin; Zimmerman, Matthew D.; Hasseman, Jeremy; Glomski, Ian J.; Lebioda, Lukasz; Savchenko, Alexei; Edwards, Aled; Minor, Wladek (SC); (Toronto); (UV)

    2012-02-15

    For the last decade, worldwide efforts for the treatment of anthrax infection have focused on developing effective vaccines. Patients that are already infected are still treated traditionally using different types of standard antimicrobial agents. The most popular are antibiotics such as tetracyclines and fluoroquinolones. While aminoglycosides appear to be less effective antimicrobial agents than other antibiotics, synthetic aminoglycosides have been shown to act as potent inhibitors of anthrax lethal factor and may have potential application as antitoxins. Here, we present a structural analysis of the BA2930 protein, a putative aminoglycoside acetyltransferase, which may be a component of the bacterium's aminoglycoside resistance mechanism. The determined structures revealed details of a fold characteristic only for one other protein structure in the Protein Data Bank, namely, YokD from Bacillus subtilis. Both BA2930 and YokD are members of the Antibiotic-NAT superfamily (PF02522). Sequential and structural analyses showed that residues conserved throughout the Antibiotic-NAT superfamily are responsible for the binding of the cofactor acetyl coenzyme A. The interaction of BA2930 with cofactors was characterized by both crystallographic and binding studies.

  12. Bacillus anthracis secretome time course under host-simulated conditions and identification of immunogenic proteins

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Whittington Jessica

    2007-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The secretion time course of Bacillus anthracis strain RA3R (pXO1+/pXO2- during early, mid, and late log phase were investigated under conditions that simulate those encountered in the host. All of the identified proteins were analyzed by different software algorithms to characterize their predicted mode of secretion and cellular localization. In addition, immunogenic proteins were identified using sera from humans with cutaneous anthrax. Results A total of 275 extracellular proteins were identified by a combination of LC MS/MS and MALDI-TOF MS. All of the identified proteins were analyzed by SignalP, SecretomeP, PSORT, LipoP, TMHMM, and PROSITE to characterize their predicted mode of secretion, cellular localization, and protein domains. Fifty-three proteins were predicted by SignalP to harbor the cleavable N-terminal signal peptides and were therefore secreted via the classical Sec pathway. Twenty-three proteins were predicted by SecretomeP for secretion by the alternative Sec pathway characterized by the lack of typical export signal. In contrast to SignalP and SecretomeP predictions, PSORT predicted 171 extracellular proteins, 7 cell wall-associated proteins, and 6 cytoplasmic proteins. Moreover, 51 proteins were predicted by LipoP to contain putative Sec signal peptides (38 have SpI sites, lipoprotein signal peptides (13 have SpII sites, and N-terminal membrane helices (9 have transmembrane helices. The TMHMM algorithm predicted 25 membrane-associated proteins with one to ten transmembrane helices. Immunogenic proteins were also identified using sera from patients who have recovered from anthrax. The charge variants (83 and 63 kDa of protective antigen (PA were the most immunodominant secreted antigens, followed by charge variants of enolase and transketolase. Conclusion This is the first description of the time course of protein secretion for the pathogen Bacillus anthracis. Time course studies of protein secretion and

  13. The genome of a Bacillus isolate causing anthrax in chimpanzees combines chromosomal properties of B. cereus with B. anthracis virulence plasmids.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Silke R Klee

    Full Text Available Anthrax is a fatal disease caused by strains of Bacillus anthracis. Members of this monophyletic species are non motile and are all characterized by the presence of four prophages and a nonsense mutation in the plcR regulator gene. Here we report the complete genome sequence of a Bacillus strain isolated from a chimpanzee that had died with clinical symptoms of anthrax. Unlike classic B. anthracis, this strain was motile and lacked the four prohages and the nonsense mutation. Four replicons were identified, a chromosome and three plasmids. Comparative genome analysis revealed that the chromosome resembles those of non-B. anthracis members of the Bacillus cereus group, whereas two plasmids were identical to the anthrax virulence plasmids pXO1 and pXO2. The function of the newly discovered third plasmid with a length of 14 kbp is unknown. A detailed comparison of genomic loci encoding key features confirmed a higher similarity to B. thuringiensis serovar konkukian strain 97-27 and B. cereus E33L than to B. anthracis strains. For the first time we describe the sequence of an anthrax causing bacterium possessing both anthrax plasmids that apparently does not belong to the monophyletic group of all so far known B. anthracis strains and that differs in important diagnostic features. The data suggest that this bacterium has evolved from a B. cereus strain independently from the classic B. anthracis strains and established a B. anthracis lifestyle. Therefore we suggest to designate this isolate as "B. cereus variety (var. anthracis".

  14. Hypopigmentation and maternal-zygotic embryonic lethality caused by a hypomorphic mbtps1 mutation in mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rutschmann, Sophie; Crozat, Karine; Li, Xiaohong; Du, Xin; Hanselman, Jeffrey C; Shigeoka, Alana A; Brandl, Katharina; Popkin, Daniel L; McKay, Dianne B; Xia, Yu; Moresco, Eva Marie Y; Beutler, Bruce

    2012-04-01

    The site 1 protease, encoded by Mbtps1, mediates the initial cleavage of site 2 protease substrates, including sterol regulatory element binding proteins and CREB/ATF transcription factors. We demonstrate that a hypomorphic mutation of Mbtps1 called woodrat (wrt) caused hypocholesterolemia, as well as progressive hypopigmentation of the coat, that appears to be mechanistically unrelated. Hypopigmentation was rescued by transgenic expression of wild-type Mbtps1, and reciprocal grafting studies showed that normal pigmentation depended upon both cell-intrinsic or paracrine factors, as well as factors that act systemically, both of which are lacking in wrt homozygotes. Mbtps1 exhibited a maternal-zygotic effect characterized by fully penetrant embryonic lethality of maternal-zygotic wrt mutant offspring and partial embryonic lethality (~40%) of zygotic wrt mutant offspring. Mbtps1 is one of two maternal-zygotic effect genes identified in mammals to date. It functions nonredundantly in pigmentation and embryogenesis. PMID:22540041

  15. Phages preying on Bacillus anthracis, Bacillus cereus, and Bacillus thuringiensis: past, present and future.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gillis, Annika; Mahillon, Jacques

    2014-07-01

    Many bacteriophages (phages) have been widely studied due to their major role in virulence evolution of bacterial pathogens. However, less attention has been paid to phages preying on bacteria from the Bacillus cereus group and their contribution to the bacterial genetic pool has been disregarded. Therefore, this review brings together the main information for the B. cereus group phages, from their discovery to their modern biotechnological applications. A special focus is given to phages infecting Bacillus anthracis, B. cereus and Bacillus thuringiensis. These phages belong to the Myoviridae, Siphoviridae, Podoviridae and Tectiviridae families. For the sake of clarity, several phage categories have been made according to significant characteristics such as lifestyles and lysogenic states. The main categories comprise the transducing phages, phages with a chromosomal or plasmidial prophage state, γ-like phages and jumbo-phages. The current genomic characterization of some of these phages is also addressed throughout this work and some promising applications are discussed here. PMID:25010767

  16. Efficacy of Daptomycin against Bacillus anthracis in a murine model of anthrax spore inhalation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heine, Henry S; Bassett, Jennifer; Miller, Lynda; Purcell, Bret K; Byrne, W Russell

    2010-10-01

    Daptomycin demonstrated in vitro (MIC(90), 4 μg/ml) and in vivo activities against Bacillus anthracis. Twice-daily treatment with a dose of 50 mg/kg of body weight was begun 24 h after challenge and continued for 14 or 21 days; results were compared to those for controls treated with phosphate-buffered saline or ciprofloxacin. Day 43 survival rates were 6/10 mice for the 14-day and 9/10 mice for the 21-day treatment groups, compared to survival with ciprofloxacin: 8/10 and 9/10 mice, respectively. Culture results from tissues removed at the termination of the experiment were negative. PMID:20643899

  17. Phages Preying on Bacillus anthracis, Bacillus cereus, and Bacillus thuringiensis: Past, Present and Future

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Annika Gillis

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available Many bacteriophages (phages have been widely studied due to their major role in virulence evolution of bacterial pathogens. However, less attention has been paid to phages preying on bacteria from the Bacillus cereus group and their contribution to the bacterial genetic pool has been disregarded. Therefore, this review brings together the main information for the B. cereus group phages, from their discovery to their modern biotechnological applications. A special focus is given to phages infecting Bacillus anthracis, B. cereus and Bacillus thuringiensis. These phages belong to the Myoviridae, Siphoviridae, Podoviridae and Tectiviridae families. For the sake of clarity, several phage categories have been made according to significant characteristics such as lifestyles and lysogenic states. The main categories comprise the transducing phages, phages with a chromosomal or plasmidial prophage state, γ-like phages and jumbo-phages. The current genomic characterization of some of these phages is also addressed throughout this work and some promising applications are discussed here.

  18. Chronic Exposure of Corals to Fine Sediments: Lethal and Sub-Lethal Impacts

    Science.gov (United States)

    Flores, Florita; Hoogenboom, Mia O.; Smith, Luke D.; Cooper, Timothy F.; Abrego, David; Negri, Andrew P.

    2012-01-01

    Understanding the sedimentation and turbidity thresholds for corals is critical in assessing the potential impacts of dredging projects in tropical marine systems. In this study, we exposed two species of coral sampled from offshore locations to six levels of total suspended solids (TSS) for 16 weeks in the laboratory, including a 4 week recovery period. Dose-response relationships were developed to quantify the lethal and sub-lethal thresholds of sedimentation and turbidity for the corals. The sediment treatments affected the horizontal foliaceous species (Montipora aequituberculata) more than the upright branching species (Acropora millepora). The lowest sediment treatments that caused full colony mortality were 30 mg l−1 TSS (25 mg cm−2 day−1) for M. aequituberculata and 100 mg l−1 TSS (83 mg cm−2 day−1) for A. millepora after 12 weeks. Coral mortality generally took longer than 4 weeks and was closely related to sediment accumulation on the surface of the corals. While measurements of damage to photosystem II in the symbionts and reductions in lipid content and growth indicated sub-lethal responses in surviving corals, the most reliable predictor of coral mortality in this experiment was long-term sediment accumulation on coral tissue. PMID:22662225

  19. Do lethal mutations influence radiation transformation frequencies; and reply

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    A recent paper by Mothersill and Seymour (1987), and its precursor by Seymour et al. (1986), prompt several comments. The points the letter makes are: (1) the dose-dependence of lethal mutations, or lethal sectoring, in a developing colony can depend upon the cells in question and/or the cell culture conditions which may apply; (2) lethal mutation probably depends upon radiation quality; (3) damage which may give rise to lethal mutations is very likely reparable; and (4) the dose-dependence of the frequency of induction of the neoplastic transformation of C3H 10T1/2 mouse cells, normalized to surviving cells, is probably not influenced by lethal mutations. The reply discusses the distinction between initiation and expression of transformation. (author)

  20. Rapid Antimicrobial Susceptibility Testing of Bacillus anthracis, Yersinia pestis, and Burkholderia pseudomallei by Use of Laser Light Scattering Technology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bugrysheva, Julia V; Lascols, Christine; Sue, David; Weigel, Linda M

    2016-06-01

    Rapid methods to determine antimicrobial susceptibility would assist in the timely distribution of effective treatment or postexposure prophylaxis in the aftermath of the release of bacterial biothreat agents such as Bacillus anthracis, Yersinia pestis, or Burkholderia pseudomallei Conventional susceptibility tests require 16 to 48 h of incubation, depending on the bacterial species. We evaluated a method that is based on laser light scattering technology that measures cell density in real time. We determined that it has the ability to rapidly differentiate between growth (resistant) and no growth (susceptible) of several bacterial threat agents in the presence of clinically relevant antimicrobials. Results were available in 10 h of incubation. Use of laser scattering technology decreased the time required to determine antimicrobial susceptibility by 50% to 75% for B. anthracis, Y. pestis, and B. pseudomallei compared to conventional methods. PMID:26984973

  1. Expression, purification, crystallization and preliminary X-ray studies of a prolyl-4-hydroxylase protein from Bacillus anthracis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Prolyl-4-hydroxylase from B. anthracis has been cloned, expressed and crystallized. A complete MAD data set has been collected to 1.4 Å resolution. Collagen prolyl-4-hydroxylase (C-P4H) catalyzes the hydroxylation of specific proline residues in procollagen, which is an essential step in collagen biosynthesis. A new form of P4H from Bacillus anthracis (anthrax-P4H) that shares many characteristics with the type I C-P4H from human has recently been characterized. The structure of anthrax-P4H could provide important insight into the chemistry of C-P4Hs and into the function of this unique homodimeric P4H. X-ray diffraction data of selenomethionine-labeled anthrax-P4H recombinantly expressed in Escherichia coli have been collected to 1.4 Å resolution

  2. Perinatal lethal skeletal dysplasia: a case report

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sunita Dubey

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available The word dysplasia originates from ancient Greek words dys (anomalous and plasia (formation. Skeltal dysplasia (SD is a heterogeneous group of congenital anomalies characterized by abnormalities in the development of the bone and cartilage tissue. This results in mark disproportion of the long bones, the spine and fetal head relation to the trunk. Perinatal lethal skeletal dysplasia leads to still birth or early neonatal death due to pulmonary hypoplasia. 30 yrs old G3P3L2 at 32 weeks presented with leaking per vaginum. Her serial scan was done as she had previous stillborn male child with short limbs. Her antenatal scan revealed short limbs from 24 weeks. From18 weeks to 24 weeks she did not underwent any sonography. She went into spontaneous labor and delivered still born male baby with clinical and radiological features suggestive of skeletal dysplasia. Skeletal dysplasia can be diagnosed on antenatal 2 D ultrasound from 14 - 16 weeks onwards. Prenatal genetic testing should be done to diagnose the genetic anomaly and patient should be referred to higher institute for this test. Even if genetic test not done even then termination of pregnancy should be considered based on ultrasound diagnosis especially with family history because of poor fetal prognosis and long term morbidity if survived. [Int J Reprod Contracept Obstet Gynecol 2016; 5(1.000: 224-229

  3. Anthrax Vaccine Antigen-Adjuvant Formulations Completely Protect New Zealand White Rabbits against Challenge with Bacillus anthracis Ames Strain Spores

    OpenAIRE

    Peachman, Kristina K.; Li, Qin; Matyas, Gary R.; Shivachandra, Sathish B.; Lovchik, Julie; Lyons, Rick C.; Alving, Carl R; Rao, Venigalla B.; Rao, Mangala

    2012-01-01

    In an effort to develop an improved anthrax vaccine that shows high potency, five different anthrax protective antigen (PA)-adjuvant vaccine formulations that were previously found to be efficacious in a nonhuman primate model were evaluated for their efficacy in a rabbit pulmonary challenge model using Bacillus anthracis Ames strain spores. The vaccine formulations include PA adsorbed to Alhydrogel, PA encapsulated in liposomes containing monophosphoryl lipid A, stable liposomal PA oil-in-wa...

  4. Testing Nucleoside Analogues as Inhibitors of Bacillus anthracis Spore Germination In Vitro and in Macrophage Cell Culture ▿

    OpenAIRE

    Alvarez, Zadkiel; Lee, Kyungae; Abel-Santos, Ernesto

    2010-01-01

    Bacillus anthracis, the etiological agent of anthrax, has a dormant stage in its life cycle known as the endospore. When conditions become favorable, spores germinate and transform into vegetative bacteria. In inhalational anthrax, the most fatal manifestation of the disease, spores enter the organism through the respiratory tract and germinate in phagosomes of alveolar macrophages. Germinated cells can then produce toxins and establish infection. Thus, germination is a crucial step for the i...

  5. Baulamycins A and B, Broad-Spectrum Antibiotics Identified as Inhibitors of Siderophore Biosynthesis in Staphylococcus aureus and Bacillus anthracis

    OpenAIRE

    Tripathi, Ashootosh; Schofield, Michael M.; Chlipala, George E.; Schultz, Pamela J.; Yim, Isaiah; Newmister, Sean A.; Nusca, Tyler D.; Scaglione, Jamie B.; Hanna, Philip C.; Tamayo-Castillo, Giselle; Sherman, David H.

    2014-01-01

    Siderophores are high-affinity iron chelators produced by microorganisms and frequently contribute to the virulence of human pathogens. Targeted inhibition of the biosynthesis of siderophores staphyloferrin B of Staphylococcus aureus and petrobactin of Bacillus anthracis hold considerable potential as a single or combined treatment for methicillin-resistant S. aureus (MRSA) and anthrax infection, respectively. The biosynthetic pathways for both siderophores involve a nonribosomal peptide synt...

  6. Ground Anthrax Bacillus Refined Isolation (GABRI) method for analyzing environmental samples with low levels of Bacillus anthracis contamination

    OpenAIRE

    Fasanella, Antonio; Di Taranto, Pietro; Garofolo, Giuliano; Colao, Valeriana; Marino, Leonardo; Buonavoglia, Domenico; Pedarra, Carmine; Adone, Rosanna; Hugh-Jones, Martin

    2013-01-01

    Background In this work are reported the results of a qualitative analytical method capable of detecting Bacillus anthracis spores when they are present in very low concentration in the soil. The Ground Anthrax Bacillus Refined Isolation (GABRI) method, assessed in our laboratory, was compared with the classic method. The comparison involved artificially anthrax-contaminated soil samples (500 spores/7.5 grams soil) and naturally contaminated soil samples collected in Bangladesh during a field...

  7. Bacillus anthracis spore interactions with mammalian cells: Relationship between germination state and the outcome of in vitro

    OpenAIRE

    Stojkovic Bojana; Prouty Angela M; Tamilselvam Batcha; Gut Ian M; Czeschin Stephanie; van der Donk Wilfred A; Blanke Steven R

    2011-01-01

    Abstract Background During inhalational anthrax, internalization of Bacillus anthracis spores by host cells within the lung is believed to be a key step for initiating the transition from the localized to disseminated stages of infection. Despite compelling in vivo evidence that spores remain dormant within the bronchioalveolar spaces of the lungs, and germinate only after uptake into host cells, most in vitro studies of infection have been conducted under conditions that promote rapid germin...

  8. Immunoassay for Capsular Antigen of Bacillus anthracis Enables Rapid Diagnosis in a Rabbit Model of Inhalational Anthrax

    OpenAIRE

    Marcellene A Gates-Hollingsworth; Perry, Mark R.; Chen, Hongjing; Needham, James; Houghton, Raymond L.; Raychaudhuri, Syamal; Mark A Hubbard; Thomas R Kozel

    2015-01-01

    Inhalational anthrax is a serious biothreat. Effective antibiotic treatment of inhalational anthrax requires early diagnosis; the further the disease has progressed, the less the likelihood for cure. Current means for diagnosis such as blood culture require several days to a result and require advanced laboratory infrastructure. An alternative approach to diagnosis is detection of a Bacillus anthracis antigen that is shed into blood and can be detected by rapid immunoassay. The goal of the st...

  9. Role of Natural Killer Cells in Innate Protection against Lethal Ebola Virus Infection

    OpenAIRE

    Warfield, Kelly L.; Perkins, Jeremy G.; Swenson, Dana L.; Deal, Emily M.; Bosio, Catharine M.; Aman, M. Javad; Yokoyama, Wayne M; Young, Howard A.; Bavari, Sina

    2004-01-01

    Ebola virus is a highly lethal human pathogen and is rapidly driving many wild primate populations toward extinction. Several lines of evidence suggest that innate, nonspecific host factors are potentially critical for survival after Ebola virus infection. Here, we show that nonreplicating Ebola virus-like particles (VLPs), containing the glycoprotein (GP) and matrix protein virus protein (VP)40, administered 1–3 d before Ebola virus infection rapidly induced protective immunity. VLP injectio...

  10. Measurement of 100 B. anthracis Ames spores within 15 minutes by SERS at the US Army Edgewood Chemical Biological Ctr.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Farquharson, Stuart; Shende, Chetan; Smith, Wayne; Huang, Hermes; Sperry, Jay; Sickler, Todd; Prugh, Amber; Guicheteau, Jason

    2014-05-01

    Since the distribution of Bacillus anthracis-Ames spores through the US Postal System, there has been a persistent fear that biological warfare agents will be used by terrorists against our military abroad and our civilians at home. While there has been substantial effort since the anthrax attack of 2001 to develop analyzers to detect this and other biological warfare agents, the analyzers remain either too slow, lack sensitivity, produce high false-positive rates, or cannot be fielded. In an effort to overcome these limitations we have been developing a surface-enhanced Raman spectroscopy system. Here we describe the use of silver nanoparticles functionalized with a short peptide to selectively capture Bacillus anthracis spores and produce SER scattering. Specifically, measurements of 100 B. anthracis-Ames spores/mL in ~25 minutes performed at the US Army's Edgewood Chemical Biological Center are presented. The measurements provide a basis for the development of systems that can detect spores collected from the air or water supplies with the potential of saving lives during a biological warfare attack.

  11. Immunoassay for Capsular Antigen of Bacillus anthracis Enables Rapid Diagnosis in a Rabbit Model of Inhalational Anthrax.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marcellene A Gates-Hollingsworth

    Full Text Available Inhalational anthrax is a serious biothreat. Effective antibiotic treatment of inhalational anthrax requires early diagnosis; the further the disease has progressed, the less the likelihood for cure. Current means for diagnosis such as blood culture require several days to a result and require advanced laboratory infrastructure. An alternative approach to diagnosis is detection of a Bacillus anthracis antigen that is shed into blood and can be detected by rapid immunoassay. The goal of the study was to evaluate detection of poly-γ-D-glutamic acid (PGA, the capsular antigen of B. anthracis, as a biomarker surrogate for blood culture in a rabbit model of inhalational anthrax. The mean time to a positive blood culture was 26 ± 5.7 h (mean ± standard deviation, whereas the mean time to a positive ELISA was 22 ± 4.2 h; P = 0.005 in comparison with blood culture. A lateral flow immunoassay was constructed for detection of PGA in plasma at concentrations of less than 1 ng PGA/ml. Use of the lateral flow immunoassay for detection of PGA in the rabbit model found that antigen was detected somewhat earlier than the earliest time point at which the blood culture became positive. The low cost, ease of use, and rapid time to result of the lateral flow immunoassay format make an immunoassay for PGA a viable surrogate for blood culture for detection of infection in individuals who have a likelihood of exposure to B. anthracis.

  12. Immunoassay for Capsular Antigen of Bacillus anthracis Enables Rapid Diagnosis in a Rabbit Model of Inhalational Anthrax.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gates-Hollingsworth, Marcellene A; Perry, Mark R; Chen, Hongjing; Needham, James; Houghton, Raymond L; Raychaudhuri, Syamal; Hubbard, Mark A; Kozel, Thomas R

    2015-01-01

    Inhalational anthrax is a serious biothreat. Effective antibiotic treatment of inhalational anthrax requires early diagnosis; the further the disease has progressed, the less the likelihood for cure. Current means for diagnosis such as blood culture require several days to a result and require advanced laboratory infrastructure. An alternative approach to diagnosis is detection of a Bacillus anthracis antigen that is shed into blood and can be detected by rapid immunoassay. The goal of the study was to evaluate detection of poly-γ-D-glutamic acid (PGA), the capsular antigen of B. anthracis, as a biomarker surrogate for blood culture in a rabbit model of inhalational anthrax. The mean time to a positive blood culture was 26 ± 5.7 h (mean ± standard deviation), whereas the mean time to a positive ELISA was 22 ± 4.2 h; P = 0.005 in comparison with blood culture. A lateral flow immunoassay was constructed for detection of PGA in plasma at concentrations of less than 1 ng PGA/ml. Use of the lateral flow immunoassay for detection of PGA in the rabbit model found that antigen was detected somewhat earlier than the earliest time point at which the blood culture became positive. The low cost, ease of use, and rapid time to result of the lateral flow immunoassay format make an immunoassay for PGA a viable surrogate for blood culture for detection of infection in individuals who have a likelihood of exposure to B. anthracis. PMID:25942409

  13. Cloning, expression, and characterization of recombinant nitric oxide synthase-like protein from Bacillus anthracis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Nitric oxide synthase (NOS) is amongst a family of evolutionarily conserved enzymes, involved in a multi-turnover process that results in NO as a product. The significant role of NO in various pathological and physiological processes has created an interest in this enzyme from several perspectives. This study describes for the first time, cloning and expression of a NOS-like protein, baNOS, from Bacillus anthracis, a pathogenic bacterium responsible for causing anthrax. baNOS was expressed in Escherichia coli as a soluble and catalytically active enzyme. Homology models generated for baNOS indicated that the key structural features that are involved in the substrate and active site interaction have been highly conserved. Further, the behavior of baNOS in terms of heme-substrate interactions and heme-transitions was studied in detail. The optical perturbation spectra of the heme domain demonstrated that the ligands perturb the heme site in a ligand specific manner. baNOS forms a five-coordinate, high-spin complex with L-arginine analogs and a six-coordinate low-spin complex with inhibitor imidazole. Studies indicated that the binding of L-arginine, N ω-hydroxy-L-arginine, and imidazole produces various spectroscopic species that closely correspond to the equivalent complexes of mammalian NOS. The values of spectral binding constants further corroborated these results. The overall conservation of the key structural features and the correlation of heme-substrate interactions in baNOS and mammalian NOS, thus, point towards an interesting phenomenon of convergent evolution. Importantly, the NO generated by NOS of mammalian macrophages plays a potent role in antimicrobicidal activity. Because of the existence of high structural and behavioral similarity between mammalian NOS and baNOS, we propose that NO produced by B. anthracis may also have a pivotal pathophysiological role in anthrax infection. Therefore, this first report of characterization of a NOS-like protein

  14. Lethal Lullabies: A History of Opium Use in Infants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Obladen, Michael

    2016-02-01

    Poppy extract accompanied the human infant for more than 3 millenia. Motives for its use included excessive crying, suspected pain, and diarrhea. In antiquity, infantile sleeplessness was regarded as a disease. When treatment with opium was recommended by Galen, Rhazes, and Avicenna, baby sedation made its way into early medical treatises and pediatric instructions. Dabbing maternal nipples with bitter substances and drugging the infant with opium were used to hasten weaning. A freerider of gum lancing, opiates joined the treatment of difficult teething in the 17th century. Foundling hospitals and wet-nurses used them extensively. With industrialization, private use was rampant among the working class. In German-speaking countries, poppy extracts were administered in soups and pacifiers. In English-speaking countries, proprietary drugs containing opium were marketed under names such as soothers, nostrums, anodynes, cordials, preservatives, and specifics and sold at the doorstep or in grocery stores. Opium's toxicity for infants was common knowledge; thousands of cases of lethal intoxication had been reported from antiquity. What is remarkable is that the willingness to use it in infants persisted and that physicians continued to prescribe it for babies. Unregulated trade, and even that protected by governments, led to greatly increased private use of opiates during the 19th century. Intoxication became a significant factor in infant mortality. As late as 1912, the International Hague Convention forced governments to implement legislation that effectively curtailed access to opium and broke the dangerous habit of sedating infants. PMID:26163533

  15. Pegfilgrastim Improves Survival of Lethally Irradiated Nonhuman Primates.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hankey, Kim G; Farese, Ann M; Blaauw, Erica C; Gibbs, Allison M; Smith, Cassandra P; Katz, Barry P; Tong, Yan; Prado, Karl L; MacVittie, Thomas J

    2015-06-01

    Leukocyte growth factors (LGF), such as filgrastim, pegfilgrastim and sargramostim, have been used to mitigate the hematologic symptoms of acute radiation syndrome (ARS) after radiation accidents. Although these pharmaceuticals are currently approved for treatment of chemotherapy-induced myelosuppression, such approval has not been granted for myelosuppression resulting from acute radiation exposure. Regulatory approval of drugs used to treat radiological or nuclear exposure injuries requires their development and testing in accordance with the Animal Efficacy Rule, set forth by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. To date, filgrastim is the only LGF that has undergone efficacy assessment conducted under the Animal Efficacy Rule. To confirm the efficacy of another LGF with a shorter dosing regimen compared to filgrastim, we evaluated the use of pegfilgrastim (Neulasta(®)) in a lethal nonhuman primate (NHP) model of hematopoietic acute radiation syndrome (H-ARS). Rhesus macaques were exposed to 7.50 Gy total-body irradiation (the LD(50/60)), delivered at 0.80 Gy/min using linear accelerator 6 MV photons. Pegfilgrastim (300 μg/kg, n = 23) or 5% dextrose in water (n = 23) was administered on day 1 and 8 postirradiation and all animals received medical management. Hematologic and physiologic parameters were evaluated for 60 days postirradiation. The primary, clinically relevant end point was survival to day 60; secondary end points included hematologic-related parameters. Pegfilgrastim significantly (P = 0.0014) increased 60 day survival to 91.3% (21/23) from 47.8% (11/23) in the control. Relative to the controls, pegfilgrastim also significantly: 1. decreased the median duration of neutropenia and thrombocytopenia; 2. improved the median time to recovery of absolute neutrophil count (ANC) ≥500/μL, ANC ≥1,000/μL and platelet (PLT) count ≥20,000/μL; 3. increased the mean ANC at nadir; and 4. decreased the incidence of Gram-negative bacteremia. These data

  16. Panning of a phage display library against a synthetic capsule for peptide ligands that bind to the native capsule of Bacillus anthracis.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michael Beer

    Full Text Available Bacillus anthracis is the causative agent of anthrax with the ability to not only produce a tripartite toxin, but also an enveloping capsule comprised primarily of γ-D-glutamic acid residues. The purpose of this study was to isolate peptide ligands capable of binding to the native capsule of B. anthracis from a commercial phage display peptide library using a synthetic form of the capsule consisting of 12 γ-D-glutamic acid residues. Following four rounds of selection, 80 clones were selected randomly and analysed by DNA sequencing. Four clones, each containing a unique consensus sequence, were identified by sequence alignment analysis. Phage particles were prepared and their derived 12-mer peptides were also chemically synthesized and conjugated to BSA. Both the phage particles and free peptide-BSA conjugates were evaluated by ELISA for binding to encapsulated cells of B. anthracis as well as a B. anthracis capsule extract. All the phage particles tested except one were able to bind to both the encapsulated cells and the capsule extract. However, the peptide-BSA conjugates could only bind to the encapsulated cells. One of the peptide-BSA conjugates, with the sequence DSSRIPMQWHPQ (termed G1, was fluorescently labelled and its binding to the encapsulated cells was further confirmed by confocal microscopy. The results demonstrated that the synthetic capsule was effective in isolating phage-displayed peptides with binding affinity for the native capsule of B. anthracis.

  17. Late-acting dominant lethal genetic systems and mosquito control

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Scaife Sarah

    2007-03-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Reduction or elimination of vector populations will tend to reduce or eliminate transmission of vector-borne diseases. One potential method for environmentally-friendly, species-specific population control is the Sterile Insect Technique (SIT. SIT has not been widely used against insect disease vectors such as mosquitoes, in part because of various practical difficulties in rearing, sterilization and distribution. Additionally, vector populations with strong density-dependent effects will tend to be resistant to SIT-based control as the population-reducing effect of induced sterility will tend to be offset by reduced density-dependent mortality. Results We investigated by mathematical modeling the effect of manipulating the stage of development at which death occurs (lethal phase in an SIT program against a density-dependence-limited insect population. We found late-acting lethality to be considerably more effective than early-acting lethality. No such strains of a vector insect have been described, so as a proof-of-principle we constructed a strain of the principal vector of the dengue and yellow fever viruses, Aedes (Stegomyia aegypti, with the necessary properties of dominant, repressible, highly penetrant, late-acting lethality. Conclusion Conventional SIT induces early-acting (embryonic lethality, but genetic methods potentially allow the lethal phase to be tailored to the program. For insects with strong density-dependence, we show that lethality after the density-dependent phase would be a considerable improvement over conventional methods. For density-dependent parameters estimated from field data for Aedes aegypti, the critical release ratio for population elimination is modeled to be 27% to 540% greater for early-acting rather than late-acting lethality. Our success in developing a mosquito strain with the key features that the modeling indicated were desirable demonstrates the feasibility of this approach for

  18. The effects of oil sands wastewater on fish resulting from exposure to sub-lethal concentrations

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rainbow trout, Oncorhynchus mykiss, were exposed to sub-lethal concentrations of oil sands wastewater in flow through laboratory experiments as well as to artificial ponds containing sub-lethal concentrations of tailings pond water and fine tails in order to study the viability of the wet landscape remediation option. Large (200--300 g) fish were used for all the exposures in this preliminary study and the following data were collected: blood cell counts, sex hormone concentrations, sexual maturation, stress protein concentrations, PAH-metabolites in bile, condition factors, liver somatic indices, mixed function oxygenase induction, PAHs in muscle, external condition and the condition of internal organs. The data obtained from this study revealed no adverse effects upon fish during extended field exposures. Given similar exposure conditions in the release waters of a wet landscape reclamation, the data suggest that there may be no adverse effects upon fish, however, longer term studies, other indicator organisms and additional chronic tests should be conducted

  19. Lethal effects of Clostridium perfringens epsilon toxin are potentiated by alpha and perfringolysin-O toxins in a mouse model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fernandez-Miyakawa, Mariano E; Jost, B Helen; Billington, Stephen J; Uzal, Francisco A

    2008-03-18

    Epsilon toxin (ETX) is the most important virulence factor of Clostridium perfringens type D. Two other important toxins, alpha toxin (CPA) and perfringolysin-O (PFO), are encoded and potentially produced by most C. perfringens type D isolates. The biological effects of these toxins are dissimilar although they are all lethal. Since the possible interaction of these toxins during infection is unknown, the effects of CPA and PFO on the lethal activity of ETX were studied in a mouse model. Mice were injected intravenously or intragastrically with CPA or PFO with or without ETX. Sublethal doses of CPA or PFO did not affect the lethality of ETX when either was injected together with the latter intravenously. However, sublethal or lethal doses of CPA or PFO resulted in reduction of the survival time of mice injected simultaneously with ETX when compared with the intravenous effect of ETX injected alone. When PFO was inoculated intragastrically with ETX, a reduction of the survival time was observed. CPA did not alter the survival time when inoculated intragastrically with ETX. The results of the present study suggest that both CPA and PFO have the potential to enhance the ETX lethal effects during enterotoxemia in natural hosts such as sheep and goats. PMID:17997054

  20. Impact of the Timing of Morphine Administration on Lipopolysaccharide-Mediated Lethal Endotoxic Shock in Mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fukada, Tomoko; Kato, Hidehito; Ozaki, Makoto; Yagi, Junji

    2016-05-01

    Sepsis is a serious condition related to systemic inflammation, organ dysfunction, and organ failure. It is a subset of the cytokine storm caused by dysregulation of cytokine production. Morphine influences the severity of infection in vivo and in vitro because it regulates cytokine production. We investigated the immunological function of morphine using a mouse model of septic shock. We treated mice with α-galactosylceramide (2 μg/mouse) to induce lethal endotoxic shock following a challenge with lipopolysaccharide (LPS, 1.5 μg/mouse). This model represents acute lung injury and respiratory failure, and reflects the clinical features of severe septic shock. We evaluated the effect of the timing of morphine (0.8 mg/mouse) administration on the survival rate, cytokine production in vivo, and histological changes of mice with LPS-mediated lethal endotoxic shock. Morphine treatment before LPS challenge suppressed lethal endotoxic shock. In contrast, when we administered after LPS, morphine exacerbated lethal endotoxic shock; hematoxylin and eosin staining revealed a marked increase in the accumulation of infiltrates comprising polymorphonuclear leukocytes and mononuclear cells in the lung; and Elastica van Gieson staining revealed the destruction of alveoli. The plasma levels of tumor necrosis factor-α, interferon-γ, monocyte-chemotactic protein-1, and interleukin-12 in the group treated with morphine after LPS challenge were higher than those treated with morphine before LPS challenge. In conclusion, one of the factors that determine whether morphine exacerbates or inhibits infection is the timing of its administration. Morphine treatment before shock improved the survival rate, and morphine treatment after shock decreased the rate of survival. PMID:26682949

  1. Intranasal immunization with protective antigen of Bacillus anthracis induces a long-term immunological memory response.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Woo, Sun-Je; Kang, Seok-Seong; Park, Sung-Moo; Yang, Jae Seung; Song, Man Ki; Yun, Cheol-Heui; Han, Seung Hyun

    2015-10-01

    Although intranasal vaccination has been shown to be effective for the protection against inhalational anthrax, establishment of long-term immunity has yet to be achieved. Here, we investigated whether intranasal immunization with recombinant protective antigen (rPA) of Bacillus anthracis induces immunological memory responses in the mucosal and systemic compartments. Intranasal immunization with rPA plus cholera toxin (CT) sustained PA-specific antibody responses for 6 months in lung, nasal washes, and vaginal washes as well as serum. A significant induction of PA-specific memory B cells was observed in spleen, cervical lymph nodes (CLNs) and lung after booster immunization. Furthermore, intranasal immunization with rPA plus CT remarkably generated effector memory CD4(+) T cells in the lung. PA-specific CD4(+) T cells preferentially increased the expression of Th1- and Th17-type cytokines in lung, but not in spleen or CLNs. Collectively, the intranasal immunization with rPA plus CT promoted immunologic memory responses in the mucosal and systemic compartments, providing long-term immunity. PMID:26278659

  2. Measurements of the Ultraviolet Fluorescence Cross Sections and Spectra of Bacillus Anthracis Simulants

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Stephens, J.R.

    1998-09-01

    Measurements of the ultraviolet autofluorescence spectra and absolute cross sections of the Bacillus anthracis (Ba) simulants Bacillus globigii (Bg), Bacillus megaterium (Bm), Bacillus subtilis (Bs), and Bacillus cereus (Bc) were measured. Fluorescence spectra and cross sections of pine pollen (Pina echinata) were measured for comparison. Both dried vegetative cells and spores separated from the sporulated vegetative material were studied. The spectra were obtained by suspending a small number (<10) of particles in air in our Single Particle Spectroscopy Apparatus (SPSA), illuminating the particles with light from a spectrally filtered arc lamp, and measuring the fluorescence spectra of the particles. The illumination was 280 nm (20 nm FWHM) and the fluorescence spectra was measured between 300 and 450 nm. The fluorescence cross section of vegetative Bg peaks at 320 nm with a maximum cross section of 5 X 10{sup -14} cm{sup 2}/sr-nm-particle while the Bg spore fluorescence peaks at 310 nm with peak fluorescence of 8 X 10{sup -15} cm{sup 2}/sr-nm-particle. Pine pollen particles showed a higher fluorescence peaking at 355 nm with a cross section of 1.7 X 10{sup -13} cm{sup 2}/sr-nm-particle. Integrated cross sections ranged from 3.0 X 10{sup -13} for the Bg spores through 2.25 X 10{sup -12} (cm{sup 2}/sr-particle) for the vegetative cells.

  3. Thermal inactivation of Bacillus anthracis surrogate spores in a bench-scale enclosed landfill gas flare.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tufts, Jenia A McBrian; Rosati, Jacky A

    2012-02-01

    A bench-scale landfill flare system was designed and built to test the potential for landfilled biological spores that migrate from the waste into the landfill gas to pass through the flare and exit into the environment as viable. The residence times and temperatures of the flare were characterized and compared to full-scale systems. Geobacillus stearothermophilus and Bacillus atrophaeus, nonpathogenic spores that may serve as surrogates for Bacillus anthracis, the causative agent for anthrax, were investigated to determine whether these organisms would be inactivated or remain viable after passing through a simulated landfill flare. High concentration spore solutions were aerosolized, dried, and sent through a bench-scale system to simulate the fate of biological weapon (BW)-grade spores in a landfill gas flare. Sampling was conducted downstream of the flare using a bioaerosol collection device containing sterile white mineral oil. The samples were cultured, incubated for seven days, and assessed for viability. Results showed that the bench-scale system exhibited good similarity to the real-world conditions of an enclosed standard combustor flare stack with a single orifice, forced-draft diffusion burner. All spores of G. stearothermophilus and B. atrophaeus were inactivated in the flare, indicating that spores that become re-entrained in landfill gas may not escape the landfill as viable, apparently becoming completely inactivated as they exit through a landfill flare. PMID:22442931

  4. In Silico Genomic Fingerprints of the Bacillus anthracis Group Obtained by Virtual Hybridization

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hueman Jaimes-Díaz

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available In this study we evaluate the capacity of Virtual Hybridization to identify between highly related bacterial strains. Eight genomic fingerprints were obtained by virtual hybridization for the Bacillus anthracis genome set, and a set of 15,264 13-nucleotide short probes designed to produce genomic fingerprints unique for each organism. The data obtained from each genomic fingerprint were used to obtain hybridization patterns simulating a DNA microarray. Two virtual hybridization methods were used: the Direct and the Extended method to identify the number of potential hybridization sites and thus determine the minimum sensitivity value to discriminate between genomes with 99.9% similarity. Genomic fingerprints were compared using both methods and phylogenomic trees were constructed to verify that the minimum detection value is 0.000017. Results obtained from the genomic fingerprints suggest that the distribution in the trees is correct, as compared to other taxonomic methods. Specific virtual hybridization sites for each of the genomes studied were also identified.

  5. Rugged single domain antibody detection elements for Bacillus anthracis spores and vegetative cells.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Scott A Walper

    Full Text Available Significant efforts to develop both laboratory and field-based detection assays for an array of potential biological threats started well before the anthrax attacks of 2001 and have continued with renewed urgency following. While numerous assays and methods have been explored that are suitable for laboratory utilization, detection in the field is often complicated by requirements for functionality in austere environments, where limited cold-chain facilities exist. In an effort to overcome these assay limitations for Bacillus anthracis, one of the most recognizable threats, a series of single domain antibodies (sdAbs were isolated from a phage display library prepared from immunized llamas. Characterization of target specificity, affinity, and thermal stability was conducted for six sdAb families isolated from rounds of selection against the bacterial spore. The protein target for all six sdAb families was determined to be the S-layer protein EA1, which is present in both vegetative cells and bacterial spores. All of the sdAbs examined exhibited a high degree of specificity for the target bacterium and its spore, with affinities in the nanomolar range, and the ability to refold into functional antigen-binding molecules following several rounds of thermal denaturation and refolding. This research demonstrates the capabilities of these sdAbs and their potential for integration into current and developing assays and biosensors.

  6. A poly-γ-(D)-glutamic acid depolymerase that degrades the protective capsule of Bacillus anthracis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Negus, David; Taylor, Peter W

    2014-03-01

    A mixed culture of Pseudomonas fluorescens and Pusillimonas noertemanii, obtained by soil enrichment, elaborated an enzyme (EnvD) which rapidly hydrolysed poly-γ-d-glutamic acid (PDGA), the constituent of the anti-phagocytic capsule conferring virulence on Bacillus anthracis. The EnvD gene is carried on the P. noertemanii genome but co-culture is required for the elaboration of PDGA depolymerase activity. EnvD showed strong sequence homology to dienelactone hydrolases from other Gram-negative bacteria, possessed no general protease activity but cleaved γ-links in both d- and l-glutamic acid-containing polymers. The stability at 37°C was markedly superior to that of CapD, a γ-glutamyltranspeptidase with PDGA depolymerase activity. Recombinant EnvD was recovered from inclusion bodies in soluble form from an Escherichia coli expression vector and the enzyme stripped the PDGA capsule from the surface of B. anthracis Pasteur within 5 min. We conclude from this in vitro study that rEnvD shows promise as a potential therapeutic for the treatment of anthrax. PMID:24428662

  7. Expression and Purification of the Bacillus anthracis Protective Antigen Receptor-binding Domain

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    葛猛; 徐俊杰; 李冰; 董大勇; 宋小红; 郭强; 赵剑; 陈薇

    2004-01-01

    The aim of this study is to express the receptor-binding domain of Bacillus anthracis protective antigen in E. coli. Signal sequence of the outer membrane protein A (OmpA) of E. coli was attached to the 5' end of the gene encoding protective antigen receptor-binding domain (the 4th domain of PA, PALM). The plasmid carrying the fusion gene was then transformed into E. coli and induced to express recombinant PAlM by IFFG. The recombinant protein was purified by chromatography and then identified by N-terrainal sequencing and Western blot. The recombinant protein, about 10% of the total bacterial protein in volume, was secreted to the periplasmic space of the cell. After a purification procedure including ionexchange chromatography and gel filtration, about 10 mg of homogenous recombinant PAD4 was obtained from 1 L culture. Data from N-terminal sequencing suggested that the amino acid sequence of recombinant PAD4 was identical with its natural counterpart. And the result of Western blot showed the recombinant protein could bind with anti-PA serum from rabbit. High level secreted expression of PAD4 was obtained in E. coli. The results reported here are parts of a continuing research to evaluate PAD4 as a potential drug for anthrax therapy or a candidate of new vaccine.

  8. Anthrax lethal toxin induced lysosomal membrane permeabilization and cytosolic cathepsin release is Nlrp1b/Nalp1b-dependent.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kathleen M Averette

    Full Text Available NOD-like receptors (NLRs are a group of cytoplasmic molecules that recognize microbial invasion or 'danger signals'. Activation of NLRs can induce rapid caspase-1 dependent cell death termed pyroptosis, or a caspase-1 independent cell death termed pyronecrosis. Bacillus anthracis lethal toxin (LT, is recognized by a subset of alleles of the NLR protein Nlrp1b, resulting in pyroptotic cell death of macrophages and dendritic cells. Here we show that LT induces lysosomal membrane permeabilization (LMP. The presentation of LMP requires expression of an LT-responsive allele of Nlrp1b, and is blocked by proteasome inhibitors and heat shock, both of which prevent LT-mediated pyroptosis. Further the lysosomal protease cathepsin B is released into the cell cytosol and cathepsin inhibitors block LT-mediated cell death. These data reveal a role for lysosomal membrane permeabilization in the cellular response to bacterial pathogens and demonstrate a shared requirement for cytosolic relocalization of cathepsins in pyroptosis and pyronecrosis.

  9. Discrimination of Bacillus anthracis from closely related microorganisms by analysis of 16S and 23S rRNA with oligonucleotide microchips

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bavykin, Sergei G.; Mirzabekov, Andrei D.

    2007-10-30

    The present invention is directed to a novel method of discriminating a highly infectious bacterium Bacillus anthracis from a group of closely related microorganisms. Sequence variations in the 16S and 23S rRNA of the B. cereus subgroup including B. anthracis are utilized to construct an array that can detect these sequence variations through selective hybridizations. The identification and analysis of these sequence variations enables positive discrimination of isolates of the B. cereus group that includes B. anthracis. Discrimination of single base differences in rRNA was achieved with a microchip during analysis of B. cereus group isolates from both single and in mixed probes, as well as identification of polymorphic sites. Successful use of a microchip to determine the appropriate subgroup classification using eight reference microorganisms from the B. cereus group as a study set, was demonstrated.

  10. Possible use of bacteriophages active against Bacillus anthracis and other B. cereus group members in the face of a bioterrorism threat.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jończyk-Matysiak, Ewa; Kłak, Marlena; Weber-Dąbrowska, Beata; Borysowski, Jan; Górski, Andrzej

    2014-01-01

    Anthrax is an infectious fatal disease with epidemic potential. Nowadays, bioterrorism using Bacillus anthracis is a real possibility, and thus society needs an effective weapon to neutralize this threat. The pathogen may be easily transmitted to human populations. It is easy to store, transport, and disseminate and may survive for many decades. Recent data strongly support the effectiveness of bacteriophage in treating bacterial diseases. Moreover, it is clear that bacteriophages should be considered a potential incapacitative agent against bioterrorism using bacteria belonging to B. cereus group, especially B. anthracis. Therefore, we have reviewed the possibility of using bacteriophages active against Bacillus anthracis and other species of the B. cereus group in the face of a bioterrorism threat. PMID:25247187

  11. Influence of nuclear structure on the formation of radiation-induced lethal lesions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Friedman, Daniel A; Tait, Lauren; Vaughan, Andrew T M

    2016-05-01

    Purpose The rejoining of fragmented nuclear DNA caused by ionizing radiation may lead to lethal chromosome rearrangements, such as rings or dicentrics. The clinically useful linear quadratic relationship between dose and cell survival has been interpreted as the generation of lethal lesions secondary to damage occurring in two separate chromosomes simultaneously (α component), or as potentially repairable separate events (β component). Here, the generation of such lesions is discussed, synthesizing existing knowledge with new insights gleaned from spatial proximity data made possible by high-throughput sequencing of chromosome conformation capture experiments. Over a range of several Mbp, the linear DNA strand is organized as a fractal globule generating multiple sites of contact that may facilitate deletions or inversions if the points of contact are damaged. On a larger scale, transcriptionally active euchromatin occupies a physically identifiable space separate from inactive areas and is preferentially susceptible to free radical attack after irradiation. Specific transcriptional programs link genomic locations within that space, potentially enhancing their interaction if subject to simultaneous fragmentation by a single radiation event. Conclusions High throughput spatial analysis of the factors that control chromosome proximity has the potential to better describe the formation of the lethal chromosome aberrations that kill irradiated cells. PMID:26917327

  12. Clinical Characteristics, Precipitating Stressors, and Correlates of Lethality among Suicide Attempters

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ya-Wen Wu

    2009-10-01

    Full Text Available Background: Given that suicide attempt is a major risk factor for suicide completion, thisstudy investigated the clinical features, precipitating stressors, and the correlatesof lethality in suicide attempters.Methods: The sample comprised 357 people who had attempted suicide and had beensent to the emergency room in a general hospital from November 2002 toJune 2005. Data collection was conducted by a consultant psychiatrist andsocial worker through interview.Results: The proportion of females was much higher than that of males. Suicideattempts peaked at 20 to 29 years old in females, and 30 to 39 years old inmales. The females reported significantly more family relationship problemsthan the males, while the males more commonly reported unemployment oreconomic problems. The most prevalent psychiatric diagnosis was affectivedisorders. The females had a higher rate of self-poisoning by medication thanthe males, while the males had a higher rate of self-poisoning by non-medicinalchemicals than the females. Those with high-lethality attempts wereolder than those with medium- and low-lethality attempts, and more weremales.Conclusion: While females and young adults had higher rates of suicide attempts, malesand the elderly were considered at higher risk for suicide completion.

  13. Rapid focused sequencing: a multiplexed assay for simultaneous detection and strain typing of Bacillus anthracis, Francisella tularensis, and Yersinia pestis.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rosemary S Turingan

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: The intentional release of Bacillus anthracis in the United States in 2001 has heightened concern about the use of pathogenic microorganisms in bioterrorism attacks. Many of the deadliest bacteria, including the Class A Select Agents Bacillus anthracis, Francisella tularensis, and Yersinia pestis, are highly infectious via the pulmonary route when released in aerosolized form. Hence, rapid, sensitive, and reliable methods for detection of these biothreats and characterization of their potential impact on the exposed population are of critical importance to initiate and support rapid military, public health, and clinical responses. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We have developed microfluidic multiplexed PCR and sequencing assays based on the simultaneous interrogation of three pathogens per assay and ten loci per pathogen. Microfluidic separation of amplified fluorescently labeled fragments generated characteristic electrophoretic signatures for identification of each agent. The three sets of primers allowed significant strain typing and discrimination from non-pathogenic closely-related species and environmental background strains based on amplicon sizes alone. Furthermore, sequencing of the 10 amplicons per pathogen, termed "Rapid Focused Sequencing," allowed an even greater degree of strain discrimination and, in some cases, can be used to determine virulence. Both amplification and sequencing assays were performed in microfluidic biochips developed for fast thermal cycling and requiring 7 µL per reaction. The 30-plex sequencing assay resulted in genotypic resolution of 84 representative strains belonging to each of the three biothreat species. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: The microfluidic multiplexed assays allowed identification and strain differentiation of the biothreat agents Bacillus anthracis, Francisella tularensis, and Yersinia pestis and clear discrimination from closely-related species and several environmental

  14. Development and field testing of a mobile chlorine dioxide generation system for the decontamination of buildings contaminated with Bacillus anthracis

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Wood, Joseph P., E-mail: wood.joe@epa.gov [U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Office of Research and Development, National Homeland Security Research Center, MC-E343-06, Research Triangle Park, NC 27711 (United States); Blair Martin, G., E-mail: martin.blair@epa.gov [U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Office of Research and Development, National Risk Management Research Laboratory, MC-E340-C, Research Triangle Park, NC 27711 (United States)

    2009-05-30

    The numerous buildings that became contaminated with Bacillus anthracis (the bacterium causing the disease anthrax) in 2001, and more recent B. anthracis - related events, point to the need to have effective decontamination technologies for buildings contaminated with biological threat agents. The U.S. Government developed a portable chlorine dioxide (ClO{sub 2}) generation system to decontaminate buildings contaminated with B. anthracis spores, and this so-called mobile decontamination trailer (MDT) prototype was tested through a series of three field trials. The first test of the MDT was conducted at Fort McClellan in Anniston, AL. during October 2004. Four test attempts occurred over two weekends; however, a number of system problems resulted in termination of the activity prior to any ClO{sub 2} introduction into the test building. After making several design enhancements and equipment changes, the MDT was subjected to a second test. During this test, extensive leak checks were made using argon and nitrogen in lieu of chlorine gas; each subsystem was checked for functionality, and the MDT was operated for 24 h. This second test demonstrated the MDT flow and control systems functioned satisfactorily, and thus it was decided to proceed to a third, more challenging field trial. In the last field test, ClO{sub 2} was generated and routed directly to the scrubber in a 12-h continuous run. Measurement of ClO{sub 2} levels at the generator outlet showed that the desired production rate was not achieved. Additionally, only one of the two scrubbers performed adequately with regard to maintaining ClO{sub 2} emissions below the limit. Numerous lessons were learned in the field trials of this ClO{sub 2} decontamination technology.

  15. Development and field testing of a mobile chlorine dioxide generation system for the decontamination of buildings contaminated with Bacillus anthracis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The numerous buildings that became contaminated with Bacillus anthracis (the bacterium causing the disease anthrax) in 2001, and more recent B. anthracis - related events, point to the need to have effective decontamination technologies for buildings contaminated with biological threat agents. The U.S. Government developed a portable chlorine dioxide (ClO2) generation system to decontaminate buildings contaminated with B. anthracis spores, and this so-called mobile decontamination trailer (MDT) prototype was tested through a series of three field trials. The first test of the MDT was conducted at Fort McClellan in Anniston, AL. during October 2004. Four test attempts occurred over two weekends; however, a number of system problems resulted in termination of the activity prior to any ClO2 introduction into the test building. After making several design enhancements and equipment changes, the MDT was subjected to a second test. During this test, extensive leak checks were made using argon and nitrogen in lieu of chlorine gas; each subsystem was checked for functionality, and the MDT was operated for 24 h. This second test demonstrated the MDT flow and control systems functioned satisfactorily, and thus it was decided to proceed to a third, more challenging field trial. In the last field test, ClO2 was generated and routed directly to the scrubber in a 12-h continuous run. Measurement of ClO2 levels at the generator outlet showed that the desired production rate was not achieved. Additionally, only one of the two scrubbers performed adequately with regard to maintaining ClO2 emissions below the limit. Numerous lessons were learned in the field trials of this ClO2 decontamination technology.

  16. Genotyping of Bacillus anthracis strains based on automated capillary 25-loci Multiple Locus Variable-Number Tandem Repeats Analysis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ciervo Alessandra

    2006-04-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The genome of Bacillus anthracis, the etiological agent of anthrax, is highly monomorphic which makes differentiation between strains difficult. A Multiple Locus Variable-number tandem repeats (VNTR Analysis (MLVA assay based on 20 markers was previously described. It has considerable discrimination power, reproducibility, and low cost, especially since the markers proposed can be typed by agarose-gel electrophoresis. However in an emergency situation, faster genotyping and access to representative databases is necessary. Results Genotyping of B. anthracis reference strains and isolates from France and Italy was done using a 25 loci MLVA assay combining 21 previously described loci and 4 new ones. DNA was amplified in 4 multiplex PCR reactions and the length of the resulting 25 amplicons was estimated by automated capillary electrophoresis. The results were reproducible and the data were consistent with other gel based methods once differences in mobility patterns were taken into account. Some alleles previously unresolved by agarose gel electrophoresis could be resolved by capillary electrophoresis, thus further increasing the assay resolution. One particular locus, Bams30, is the result of a recombination between a 27 bp tandem repeat and a 9 bp tandem repeat. The analysis of the array illustrates the evolution process of tandem repeats. Conclusion In a crisis situation of suspected bioterrorism, standardization, speed and accuracy, together with the availability of reference typing data are important issues, as illustrated by the 2001 anthrax letters event. In this report we describe an upgrade of the previously published MLVA method for genotyping of B. anthracis and apply the method to the typing of French and Italian B. anthracis strain collections. The increased number of markers studied compared to reports using only 8 loci greatly improves the discrimination power of the technique. An Italian strain belonging to the

  17. Enhanced Immune Response to DNA Vaccine Encoding Bacillus anthracis PA-D4 Protects Mice against Anthrax Spore Challenge

    OpenAIRE

    Kim, Na Young; Chang, Dong Suk; Kim, Yeonsu; Kim, Chang Hwan; Hur, Gyeung Haeng; Yang, Jai Myung; Shin, Sungho

    2015-01-01

    Anthrax has long been considered the most probable bioweapon-induced disease. The protective antigen (PA) of Bacillus anthracis plays a crucial role in the pathogenesis of anthrax. In the current study, we evaluated the efficiency of a genetic vaccination with the fourth domain (D4) of PA, which is responsible for initial binding of the anthrax toxin to the cellular receptor. The eukaryotic expression vector was designed with the immunoglobulin M (IgM) signal sequence encoding for PA-D4, whic...

  18. Factoring

    OpenAIRE

    Lenstra, Arjen K.

    1994-01-01

    Factoring, finding a non-trivial factorization of a composite positive integer, is believed to be a hard problem. How hard we think it is, however, changes almost on a daily basis. Predicting how hard factoring will be in the future, an important issue for cryptographic applications of composite numbers, is therefore a challenging task. The author presents a brief survey of general purpose integer factoring algorithms and their implementations

  19. Effects of lethal and non-lethal malaria on the mononuclear phagocyte system

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carlos Eduardo Tosta

    1983-03-01

    Full Text Available The effects ofone non-lethal species ofmalarialparasite, Plasmodium yoelii, and one lethal species, P. berghei, on the mononuclear phagocyte system (MPS of BALB/c mice were studied. P. yoelii caused a greater and more sustained expansion and activation of the MPS, and the two major populations of spleen phagocytic cells-red pulp and marginal zone macrophages - exhibited a greater increase in numbers in this infection. During the course of P. berghei mataria, the spleen was progressively occupied by haematopoietic tissue and, at the terminal stage of infection, an extensive depletion of lymphocytes and macrophages was apparent. The possibility was suggested that the outcome of mataria may be inftuenced by the particular way the parasite interacts with the MPS.Estudou-se o efeito da infecção causada por espécie letal (Plasmodium berghei e não- letal (P. yoelii de plasmódio sobre o sistema de fagócitos mononucleares de camundongo BALB/c. O P. yoelii causou maior e mais prolongada expansão e ativação do sistema de macrófagos. As duas mais importantes populações de fagócitos esplênicos - macrófagos de polpa vermelha e da zona marginal - exibiam maior aumento do número de células nesta infecção. Durante a evolução da malária por P. berghei, o baço foi progressivamente ocupado por tecido hematopoiético e, na fase terminal da infecção, observou-se significativa depleção dos linfócitos e macrófagos esplênicos. Os dados apresentados indicam que a evolução da malária depende do tipo de interação entre o plasmódio e o sistema de fagócitos mononucleares.

  20. Determinants of the lethality of climate-related disasters in the Caribbean Community (CARICOM): a cross-country analysis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Andrewin, Aisha N.; Rodriguez-Llanes, Jose M.; Guha-Sapir, Debarati

    2015-07-01

    Floods and storms are climate-related hazards posing high mortality risk to Caribbean Community (CARICOM) nations. However risk factors for their lethality remain untested. We conducted an ecological study investigating risk factors for flood and storm lethality in CARICOM nations for the period 1980-2012. Lethality - deaths versus no deaths per disaster event- was the outcome. We examined biophysical and social vulnerability proxies and a decadal effect as predictors. We developed our regression model via multivariate analysis using a generalized logistic regression model with quasi-binomial distribution; removal of multi-collinear variables and backward elimination. Robustness was checked through subset analysis. We found significant positive associations between lethality, percentage of total land dedicated to agriculture (odds ratio [OR] 1.032; 95% CI: 1.013-1.053) and percentage urban population (OR 1.029, 95% CI 1.003-1.057). Deaths were more likely in the 2000-2012 period versus 1980-1989 (OR 3.708, 95% CI 1.615-8.737). Robustness checks revealed similar coefficients and directions of association. Population health in CARICOM nations is being increasingly impacted by climate-related disasters connected to increasing urbanization and land use patterns. Our findings support the evidence base for setting sustainable development goals (SDG).

  1. Rapid vascular responses to anthrax lethal toxin in mice containing a segment of chromosome 11 from the CAST/Ei strain on a C57BL/6 genetic background.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weigel, Kelsey J; Rues, Laura; Doyle, Edward J; Buchheit, Cassandra L; Wood, John G; Gallagher, Ryan J; Kelly, Laura E; Radel, Jeffrey D; Bradley, Kenneth A; LeVine, Steven M

    2012-01-01

    Host allelic variation controls the response to B. anthracis and the disease course of anthrax. Mouse strains with macrophages that are responsive to anthrax lethal toxin (LT) show resistance to infection while mouse strains with LT non-responsive macrophages succumb more readily. B6.CAST.11M mice have a region of chromosome 11 from the CAST/Ei strain (a LT responsive strain) introgressed onto a LT non-responsive C57BL/6J genetic background. Previously, B6.CAST.11M mice were found to exhibit a rapid inflammatory reaction to LT termed the early response phenotype (ERP), and displayed greater resistance to B. anthracis infection compared to C57BL/6J mice. Several ERP features (e.g., bloat, hypothermia, labored breathing, dilated pinnae vessels) suggested vascular involvement. To test this, Evan's blue was used to assess vessel leakage and intravital microscopy was used to monitor microvascular blood flow. Increased vascular leakage was observed in lungs of B6.CAST.11M mice compared to C57BL/6J mice 1 hour after systemic administration of LT. Capillary blood flow was reduced in the small intestine mesentery without concomitant leukocyte emigration following systemic or topical application of LT, the latter suggesting a localized tissue mechanism in this response. Since LT activates the Nlrp1b inflammasome in B6.CAST.11M mice, the roles of inflammasome products, IL-1β and IL-18, were examined. Topical application to the mesentery of IL-1β but not IL-18 revealed pronounced slowing of blood flow in B6.CAST.11M mice that was not present in C57BL/6J mice. A neutralizing anti-IL-1β antibody suppressed the slowing of blood flow induced by LT, indicating a role for IL-1β in the response. Besides allelic differences controlling Nlrp1b inflammasome activation by LT observed previously, evidence presented here suggests that an additional genetic determinant(s) could regulate the vascular response to IL-1β. These results demonstrate that vessel leakage and alterations to

  2. Bacillus anthracis Prolyl 4-Hydroxylase Modifies Collagen-like Substrates in Asymmetric Patterns.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schnicker, Nicholas J; Dey, Mishtu

    2016-06-17

    Proline hydroxylation is the most prevalent post-translational modification in collagen. The resulting product trans-4-hydroxyproline (Hyp) is of critical importance for the stability and thus function of collagen, with defects leading to several diseases. Prolyl 4-hydroxylases (P4Hs) are mononuclear non-heme iron α-ketoglutarate (αKG)-dependent dioxygenases that catalyze Hyp formation. Although animal and plant P4Hs target peptidyl proline, prokaryotes have been known to use free l-proline as a precursor to form Hyp. The P4H from Bacillus anthracis (BaP4H) has been postulated to act on peptidyl proline in collagen peptides, making it unusual within the bacterial clade, but its true physiological substrate remains enigmatic. Here we use mass spectrometry, fluorescence binding, x-ray crystallography, and docking experiments to confirm that BaP4H recognizes and acts on peptidyl substrates but not free l-proline, using elements characteristic of an Fe(II)/αKG-dependent dioxygenases. We further show that BaP4H can hydroxylate unique peptidyl proline sites in collagen-derived peptides with asymmetric hydroxylation patterns. The cofactor-bound crystal structures of BaP4H reveal active site conformational changes that define open and closed forms and mimic "ready" and "product-released" states of the enzyme in the catalytic cycle. These results help to clarify the role of BaP4H as well as provide broader insights into human collagen P4H and proteins with poly-l-proline type II helices. PMID:27129244

  3. Composite sampling of a Bacillus anthracis surrogate with cellulose sponge surface samplers from a nonporous surface.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jenia A M Tufts

    Full Text Available A series of experiments was conducted to explore the utility of composite-based collection of surface samples for the detection of a Bacillus anthracis surrogate using cellulose sponge samplers on a nonporous stainless steel surface. Two composite-based collection approaches were evaluated over a surface area of 3716 cm2 (four separate 929 cm2 areas, larger than the 645 cm2 prescribed by the standard Centers for Disease Control (CDC and Prevention cellulose sponge sampling protocol for use on nonporous surfaces. The CDC method was also compared to a modified protocol where only one surface of the sponge sampler was used for each of the four areas composited. Differences in collection efficiency compared to positive controls and the potential for contaminant transfer for each protocol were assessed. The impact of the loss of wetting buffer from the sponge sampler onto additional surface areas sampled was evaluated. Statistical tests of the results using ANOVA indicate that the collection of composite samples using the modified sampling protocol is comparable to the collection of composite samples using the standard CDC protocol (p  =  0.261. Most of the surface-bound spores are collected on the first sampling pass, suggesting that multiple passes with the sponge sampler over the same surface may be unnecessary. The effect of moisture loss from the sponge sampler on collection efficiency was not significant (p  =  0.720 for both methods. Contaminant transfer occurs with both sampling protocols, but the magnitude of transfer is significantly greater when using the standard protocol than when the modified protocol is used (p<0.001. The results of this study suggest that composite surface sampling, by either method presented here, could successfully be used to increase the surface area sampled per sponge sampler, resulting in reduced sampling times in the field and decreased laboratory processing cost and turn-around times.

  4. Examination of serological memory in rabbits injected with Bacillus anthracis protective antigen adsorbed to Alhydrogel

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stephen F. Little

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Serological memory after inoculation of protective antigen (PA combined with Alhydrogel adjuvant (PA/Alhydrogel was examined in New Zealand white rabbits, an animal model for anthrax. A threshold dose of 0.1 μg of PA/Alhydrogel was identified which resulted in an ELISA titer 2 weeks after a primary immunization of only 0.168 μg anti-PA IgG per ml and a toxin-neutralizing antibody titer (TNA ED50 of 1.8 (n = 40. A significant increase in anti-PA IgG and TNA ED50 titers were measured (p < 0.0001 2 weeks after a booster immunization with 0.1 μg of PA/Alhydrogel at 14 days (n = 10; 40.9 μg anti-PA IgG per ml; 522 TNA ED50 and 28 days (n = 10; 63.8 μg anti-PA IgG per ml; 501 TNA ED50. At this threshold dose of PA/Alhydrogel, protection against an aerosol exposure to Bacillus anthracis Ames spores improved as the booster immunization was administered from 4 days (40% survival, to 8 days (50% survival, and to 12 days (80% survival before challenge. The partial protection of rabbits, even in the absence of protective antibody titers (0.9 μg anti-PA IgG per ml and 26 TNA ED50 when the booster immunization was administered 4 days before challenge, suggested a protective potential for serologic memory.

  5. Rapid Detection of Viable Bacillus anthracis Spores in Environmental Samples by Using Engineered Reporter Phages.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sharp, Natasha J; Molineux, Ian J; Page, Martin A; Schofield, David A

    2016-04-15

    Bacillus anthracis, the causative agent of anthrax, was utilized as a bioterrorism agent in 2001 when spores were distributed via the U.S. postal system. In responding to this event, the Federal Bureau of Investigation used traditional bacterial culture viability assays to ascertain the extent of contamination of the postal facilities within 24 to 48 h of environmental sample acquisition. Here, we describe a low-complexity, second-generation reporter phage assay for the rapid detection of viableB. anthracisspores in environmental samples. The assay uses an engineeredB. anthracisreporter phage (Wβ::luxAB-2) which transduces bioluminescence to infected cells. To facilitate low-level environmental detection and maximize the signal response, expression ofluxABin an earlier version of the reporter phage (Wβ::luxAB-1) was optimized. These alterations prolonged signal kinetics, increased light output, and improved assay sensitivity. Using Wβ::luxAB-2, detection ofB. anthracisspores was 1 CFU in 8 h from pure cultures and as low as 10 CFU/g in sterile soil but increased to 10(5)CFU/g in unprocessed soil due to an unstable signal and the presence of competing bacteria. Inclusion of semiselective medium, mediated by a phage-expressed antibiotic resistance gene, maintained signal stability and enabled the detection of 10(4)CFU/g in 6 h. The assay does not require spore extraction and relies on the phage infecting germinating cells directly in the soil sample. This reporter phage displays promise for the rapid detection of low levels of spores on clean surfaces and also in grossly contaminated environmental samples from complex matrices such as soils. PMID:26873316

  6. Early events of lethal action by tobramycin in Pseudomonas aeruginosa

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The immediate activities of the aminoglycoside antibiotic, tobramycin, were investigated in Pseudomonas aeruginosa PAO1. The influence of carbon growth substate and the antibiotic exposure environment in the magnitude of activity were examined. Lethality by 8 μg/ml tobramycin occurred rapidly (1 to 3 minutes). The release of specific cellular components into the supernatant was associated with lethality. This material was initially detected as an increase in UV-absorbance. Magnesium in the reaction mixture provided protection against lethality and leakage, but did not reverse lethal damage after a 3 minute tobramycin treatment. Also, uptake of 3H-tobramycin was reduced in the presence of magnesium. Cells grown with glucose as a carbon source were more susceptible than organic acid grown cells as was the rapidity and amount of cell damage. Analyses of the leakage material revealed a 2-fold increase of protein in the supernatant after a 1-3 minute treatment which paralleled lethality. A prominent 29 kDa protein was observed by SDS-PAGE in the released material, which has been identified as the periplasmic enzyme, β-lactamase. The immediate activities of tobramycin did not involve (i) release of overall cell protein, (ii) massive loss of total pool amino acids, (iii) cell lysis, (iv) inhibition of proline uptake, (v) release of lipopolysaccharide, or (vi) leakage of ATP. Electron microscopy showed no apparent damage after a 3 minute exposure. 40% inhibition of protein synthesis had occurred by 3 minutes of exposure, while release of UV-absorbing material and lethality were detectable after only 1 minute. Resistant cystic fibrosis isolates of P. aeruginosa did not leak under the same experimental conditions, but one of two susceptible strains examined did show increased UV-absorbance following treatment

  7. Prenatal diagnosis of lethal osteogenesis imperfecta in twin pregnancy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morin, L R; Herlicoviez, M; Loisel, J C; Jacob, B; Feuilly, C; Stanescu, V

    1991-06-01

    Lethal osteogenesis imperfecta was diagnosed at 27 weeks amenorrea in one fetus of a bichorial twin pregnancy. Sonographic findings included: short-limb dwarfism, hypotrophy and hypoechoic bones. The affected fetus was so translucent that only the normal fetus could be seen on plain in utero radiography. The affected fetus died immediately after birth. Postmortem radiography and histology were typical of lethal osteogenesis imperfecta of type IIA. Aids to the etiological diagnosis of in utero dwarfism are presented. Sonographic features correlated with neonatal death are described. PMID:1863995

  8. Effective antiprotease-antibiotic treatment of experimental anthrax

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    MacAfee Rebecca

    2005-04-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Inhalation anthrax is characterized by a systemic spread of the challenge agent, Bacillus anthracis. It causes severe damage, including multiple hemorrhagic lesions, to host tissues and organs. It is widely believed that anthrax lethal toxin secreted by proliferating bacteria is a major cause of death, however, the pathology of intoxication in experimental animals is drastically different from that found during the infectious process. In order to close a gap between our understanding of anthrax molecular pathology and the most prominent clinical features of the infectious process we undertook bioinformatic and experimental analyses of potential proteolytic virulence factors of B. anthracis distinct from lethal toxin. Methods Secreted proteins (other than lethal and edema toxins produced by B. anthracis were tested for tissue-damaging activity and toxicity in mice. Chemical protease inhibitors and rabbit immune sera raised against B. anthracis proteases were used to treat mice challenged with B. anthracis (Sterne spores. Results B. anthracis strain delta Ames (pXO1-, pXO2- producing no lethal and edema toxins secrets a number of metalloprotease virulence factors upon cultivation under aerobic conditions, including those with hemorrhagic, caseinolytic and collagenolytic activities, belonging to M4 and M9 thermolysin and bacterial collagenase families, respectively. These factors are directly toxic to DBA/2 mice upon intratracheal administration at 0.5 mg/kg and higher doses. Chemical protease inhibitors (phosphoramidon and 1, 10-phenanthroline, as well as immune sera against M4 and M9 proteases of B. anthracis, were used to treat mice challenged with B. anthracis (Sterne spores. These substances demonstrate a substantial protective efficacy in combination with ciprofloxacin therapy initiated as late as 48 h post spore challenge, compared to the antibiotic alone. Conclusion Secreted proteolytic enzymes are important pathogenic

  9. Distinct mechanisms of splicing regulation in vivo by the Drosophila protein Sex-lethal

    OpenAIRE

    Granadino, Begoña; Luiz O. F. Penalva; Green, Michael R.; Valcárcel, Juán; Sánchez, Lucas

    1997-01-01

    The protein Sex-lethal (SXL) controls pre-mRNA splicing of two genes involved in Drosophila sex determination: transformer (tra) and the Sxl gene itself. Previous in vitro results indicated that SXL antagonizes the general splicing factor U2AF65 to regulate splicing of tra. In this report, we have used transgenic flies expressing chimeric proteins between SXL and the effector domain of U2AF65 to study the mechanisms of splicing regulation by SXL in vivo. Conferring U2AF activity to SXL reliev...

  10. MYC, Metabolic Synthetic Lethality, and Cancer.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hsieh, Annie L; Dang, Chi V

    2016-01-01

    The MYC oncogene plays a pivotal role in the development and progression of human cancers. It encodes a transcription factor that has broad reaching effects on many cellular functions, most importantly in driving cell growth through regulation of genes involved in ribosome biogenesis, metabolism, and cell cycle. Upon binding DNA with its partner MAX, MYC recruits factors that release paused RNA polymerases to drive transcription and amplify gene expression. At physiologic levels of MYC, occupancy of high-affinity DNA-binding sites drives 'house-keeping' metabolic genes and those involved in ribosome and mitochondrial biogenesis for biomass accumulation. At high oncogenic levels of MYC, invasion of low-affinity sites and enhancer sequences alter the transcriptome and cause metabolic imbalances, which activates stress response and checkpoints such as p53. Loss of checkpoints unleashes MYC's full oncogenic potential to couple metabolism with neoplastic cell growth and division. Cells that overexpress MYC, however, are vulnerable to metabolic perturbations that provide potential new avenues for cancer therapy. PMID:27557535

  11. Protection Afforded by Fluoroquinolones in Animal Models of Respiratory Infections with Bacillus anthracis, Yersinia pestis, and Francisella tularensis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peterson, Johnny W; Moen, Scott T; Healy, Daniel; Pawlik, Jennifer E; Taormina, Joanna; Hardcastle, Jason; Thomas, John M; Lawrence, William S; Ponce, Cindy; Chatuev, Bagram M; Gnade, Bryan T; Foltz, Sheri M; Agar, Stacy L; Sha, Jian; Klimpel, Gary R; Kirtley, Michelle L; Eaves-Pyles, Tonyia; Chopra, Ashok K

    2010-01-01

    Successful treatment of inhalation anthrax, pneumonic plague and tularemia can be achieved with fluoroquinolone antibiotics, such as ciprofloxacin and levofloxacin, and initiation of treatment is most effective when administered as soon as possible following exposure. Bacillus anthracis Ames, Yersinia pestis CO92, and Francisella tularensis SCHU S4 have equivalent susceptibility in vitro to ciprofloxacin and levofloxacin (minimal inhibitory concentration is 0.03 μg/ml); however, limited information is available regarding in vivo susceptibility of these infectious agents to the fluoroquinolone antibiotics in small animal models. Mice, guinea pig, and rabbit models have been developed to evaluate the protective efficacy of antibiotic therapy against these life-threatening infections. Our results indicated that doses of ciprofloxacin and levofloxacin required to protect mice against inhalation anthrax were approximately 18-fold higher than the doses of levofloxacin required to protect against pneumonic plague and tularemia. Further, the critical period following aerosol exposure of mice to either B. anthracis spores or Y. pestis was 24 h, while mice challenged with F. tularensis could be effectively protected when treatment was delayed for as long as 72 h postchallenge. In addition, it was apparent that prolonged antibiotic treatment was important in the effective treatment of inhalation anthrax in mice, but short-term treatment of mice with pneumonic plague or tularemia infections were usually successful. These results provide effective antibiotic dosages in mice, guinea pigs, and rabbits and lay the foundation for the development and evaluation of combinational treatment modalities. PMID:21127743

  12. Crystallization and preliminary X-ray characterization of arylamine N-acetyltransferase C (BanatC) from Bacillus anthracis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bacillus anthracis arylamine N-acetyltransferase C (BanatC) is an enzyme that metabolizes the drug sulfamethoxazole. Crystals of the purified enzyme that diffract at 1.95 Å are reported. The arylamine N-acetyltransferase (NAT) enzymes are xenobiotic metabolizing enzymes that have been found in a large range of eukaryotes and prokaryotes. These enzymes catalyse the acetylation of arylamine drugs and/or pollutants. Recently, a Bacillus anthracis NAT isoform (BanatC) has been cloned and shown to acetylate the sulfonamide antimicrobial sulfamethoxazole (SMX). Subsequently, it was shown that BanatC contributes to the resistance of this bacterium to SMX. Here, the crystallization and the X-ray characterization of BanatC (Y38F mutant) are reported. The crystals belong to the tetragonal space group P41212 or P43212, with unit-cell parameters a = b = 53.70, c = 172.40 Å, and diffract to 1.95 Å resolution on a synchrotron source

  13. A Spontaneous Translational Fusion of Bacillus cereus PlcR and PapR Activates Transcription of PlcR-Dependent Genes in Bacillus anthracis via Binding with a Specific Palindromic Sequence

    OpenAIRE

    Pomerantsev, Andrei P; Pomerantseva, Olga M.; Stephen H Leppla

    2004-01-01

    Transformation of Bacillus anthracis with plasmid pUTE29-plcR-papR carrying the native Bacillus cereus plcR-papR gene cluster did not activate expression of B. anthracis hemolysin genes, even though these are expected to be responsive to activation by the global regulator PlcR. To further characterize the action of PlcR, we examined approximately 3,000 B. anthracis transformants containing pUTE29-plcR-papR and found a single hemolytic colony. The hemolytic strain contained a plasmid having a ...

  14. Dominant-lethal mutations and heritable translocations in mice

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Chromosome aberrations are a major component of radiation or chemically induced genetic damage in mammalian germ cells. The types of aberration produced are dependent upon the mutagen used and the germ-cell stage treated. For example, in male meiotic and postmeiotic germ cells certain alkylating chemicals induce both dominant-lethal mutations and heritable translocations while others induce primarily dominant-lethal mutations. Production of these two endpoints appears to be determined by the stability of alkylation products with the chromosomes. If the reaction products are intact in the male chromosomes at the time of sperm entry, they may be repaired in fertilized eggs. If repair is not effected and the alkylation products persist to the time of pronuclear chromosome replication, they lead to chromatid-type aberrations and eventually to dominant-lethality. The production of heritable translocations, on the other hand, requires a transformation of unstable alkylation products into suitable intermediate lesions. The process by which these lesions are converted into chromosome exchange within the male genome takes place after sperm enters the egg but prior to the time of pronuclear chromosome replication (i.e., chromosome-type). Thus, dominant-lethal mutations result from both chromatid- and chromosome-type aberrations while heritable translocations result primarily from the latter type. DNA target sites associated with the production of these two endpoints are discussed

  15. Subcutaneous wounding postirradiation reduces radiation lethality in mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garrett, Joy; Orschell, Christie M; Mendonca, Marc S; Bigsby, Robert M; Dynlacht, Joseph R

    2014-06-01

    The detonation of an improvised nuclear device during a radiological terrorist attack could result in the exposure of thousands of civilians and first responders to lethal or potentially lethal doses of ionizing radiation (IR). There is a major effort in the United States to develop phamacological mitigators of radiation lethality that would be effective particularly if administered after irradiation. We show here that giving female C57BL/6 mice a subcutaneous surgical incision after whole body exposure to an LD50/30 X-ray dose protects against radiation lethality and increases survival from 50% to over 90% (P = 0.0001). The increase in survival, at least in part, appears to be due to enhanced recovery of hematopoiesis, notably red blood cells, neutrophils and platelets. While a definitive mechanism has yet to be elucidated, we propose that this approach may be used to identify potentially novel mechanisms and pathways that could aid in the development of novel pharmacological radiation countermeasures. PMID:24811864

  16. Dominant-lethal mutations and heritable translocations in mice

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Generoso, W.M.

    1983-01-01

    Chromosome aberrations are a major component of radiation or chemically induced genetic damage in mammalian germ cells. The types of aberration produced are dependent upon the mutagen used and the germ-cell stage treated. For example, in male meiotic and postmeiotic germ cells certain alkylating chemicals induce both dominant-lethal mutations and heritable translocations while others induce primarily dominant-lethal mutations. Production of these two endpoints appears to be determined by the stability of alkylation products with the chromosomes. If the reaction products are intact in the male chromosomes at the time of sperm entry, they may be repaired in fertilized eggs. If repair is not effected and the alkylation products persist to the time of pronuclear chromosome replication, they lead to chromatid-type aberrations and eventually to dominant-lethality. The production of heritable translocations, on the other hand, requires a transformation of unstable alkylation products into suitable intermediate lesions. The process by which these lesions are converted into chromosome exchange within the male genome takes place after sperm enters the egg but prior to the time of pronuclear chromosome replication (i.e., chromosome-type). Thus, dominant-lethal mutations result from both chromatid- and chromosome-type aberrations while heritable translocations result primarily from the latter type. DNA target sites associated with the production of these two endpoints are discussed.

  17. The "Lethal Chamber": Further Evidence of the Euthanasia Option.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Elks, Martin A.

    1993-01-01

    Historical discussions of the euthanasia or "lethal chamber" option in relation to people with mental retardation are presented. The paper concludes that eugenic beliefs in the primacy of heredity over environment and the positive role of natural selection may have condoned the poor conditions characteristic of large, segregated institutions and…

  18. Papaya Lethal Yellowing Virus (PLYV) Infects Vasconcellea cauliflora

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Amaral, P.P.R.; Resende, de R.O.; Souza, M.T.

    2006-01-01

    Papaya lethal yellowing virus (PLYV) é um dos três vírus descritos infectando mamoeiros (Carica papaya L.) no Brasil. Vasconcellea cauliflora (Jacq.) A. DC., antes denominada de Carica cauliflora (Jacq.), é uma reconhecida fonte de resistência natural ao Papaya ringspot virus (PRSV), causador da "Ma

  19. Conditional lethality strains for the biological control of Anastrepha species

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pro-apoptotic cell death genes are promising candidates for biologically-based autocidal control of pest insects as demonstrated by tetracycline (tet)-suppressible systems for conditional embryonic lethality in Drosophila melanogaster (Dm) and the medfly, Ceratitis capitata (Cc). However, for medfly...

  20. Staphylococcal Superantigens Cause Lethal Pulmonary Disease in Rabbits

    OpenAIRE

    Strandberg, Kristi L.; Jessica H Rotschafer; Vetter, Sara M.; Buonpane, Rebecca A.; Kranz, David M.; Patrick M Schlievert

    2010-01-01

    Background. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and others reported that methicillinresistant S. aureus (MRSA) are significant causes of serious human infections, including pulmonary illnesses. We investigated the role played by superantigens in lung-associated lethal illness in rabbits.

  1. Resveratrol Antagonizes Antimicrobial Lethality and Stimulates Recovery of Bacterial Mutants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Yuanli; Zhou, Jinan; Qu, Yilin; Yang, Xinguang; Shi, Guojing; Wang, Xiuhong; Hong, Yuzhi; Drlica, Karl; Zhao, Xilin

    2016-01-01

    Reactive oxygen species (ROS; superoxide, peroxide, and hydroxyl radical) are thought to contribute to the rapid bactericidal activity of diverse antimicrobial agents. The possibility has been raised that consumption of antioxidants in food may interfere with the lethal action of antimicrobials. Whether nutritional supplements containing antioxidant activity are also likely to interfere with antimicrobial lethality is unknown. To examine this possibility, resveratrol, a popular antioxidant dietary supplement, was added to cultures of Escherichia coli and Staphylococcus aureus that were then treated with antimicrobial and assayed for bacterial survival and the recovery of mutants resistant to an unrelated antimicrobial, rifampicin. Resveratrol, at concentrations likely to be present during human consumption, caused a 2- to 3-fold reduction in killing during a 2-hr treatment with moxifloxacin or kanamycin. At higher, but still subinhibitory concentrations, resveratrol reduced antimicrobial lethality by more than 3 orders of magnitude. Resveratrol also reduced the increase in reactive oxygen species (ROS) characteristic of treatment with quinolone (oxolinic acid). These data support the general idea that the lethal activity of some antimicrobials involves ROS. Surprisingly, subinhibitory concentrations of resveratrol promoted (2- to 6-fold) the recovery of rifampicin-resistant mutants arising from the action of ciprofloxacin, kanamycin, or daptomycin. This result is consistent with resveratrol reducing ROS to sublethal levels that are still mutagenic, while the absence of resveratrol allows ROS levels to high enough to kill mutagenized cells. Suppression of antimicrobial lethality and promotion of mutant recovery by resveratrol suggests that the antioxidant may contribute to the emergence of resistance to several antimicrobials, especially if new derivatives and/or formulations of resveratrol markedly increase bioavailability. PMID:27045517

  2. Annotating novel genes by integrating synthetic lethals and genomic information

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Faty Mahamadou

    2008-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Large scale screening for synthetic lethality serves as a common tool in yeast genetics to systematically search for genes that play a role in specific biological processes. Often the amounts of data resulting from a single large scale screen far exceed the capacities of experimental characterization of every identified target. Thus, there is need for computational tools that select promising candidate genes in order to reduce the number of follow-up experiments to a manageable size. Results We analyze synthetic lethality data for arp1 and jnm1, two spindle migration genes, in order to identify novel members in this process. To this end, we use an unsupervised statistical method that integrates additional information from biological data sources, such as gene expression, phenotypic profiling, RNA degradation and sequence similarity. Different from existing methods that require large amounts of synthetic lethal data, our method merely relies on synthetic lethality information from two single screens. Using a Multivariate Gaussian Mixture Model, we determine the best subset of features that assign the target genes to two groups. The approach identifies a small group of genes as candidates involved in spindle migration. Experimental testing confirms the majority of our candidates and we present she1 (YBL031W as a novel gene involved in spindle migration. We applied the statistical methodology also to TOR2 signaling as another example. Conclusion We demonstrate the general use of Multivariate Gaussian Mixture Modeling for selecting candidate genes for experimental characterization from synthetic lethality data sets. For the given example, integration of different data sources contributes to the identification of genetic interaction partners of arp1 and jnm1 that play a role in the same biological process.

  3. Microevolution of Anthrax from a Young Ancestor (M.A.Y.A. Suggests a Soil-Borne Life Cycle of Bacillus anthracis.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Peter Braun

    Full Text Available During an anthrax outbreak at the Pollino National Park (Basilicata, Italy in 2004, diseased cattle were buried and from these anthrax-foci Bacillus anthracis endospores still diffuse to the surface resulting in local accumulations. Recent data suggest that B. anthracis multiplies in soil outside the animal-host body. This notion is supported by the frequent isolation of B. anthracis from soil lacking one or both virulence plasmids. Such strains represent an evolutionary dead end, as they are likely no longer able to successfully infect new hosts. This loss of virulence plasmids is explained most simply by postulating a soil-borne life cycle of the pathogen. To test this hypothesis we investigated possible microevolution at two natural anthrax foci from the 2004 outbreak. If valid, then genotypes of strains isolated from near the surface at these foci should be on a different evolutionary trajectory from those below residing in deeper-laying horizons close to the carcass. Thus, the genetic diversity of B. anthracis isolates was compared conducting Progressive Hierarchical Resolving Assays using Nucleic Acids (PHRANA and next generation Whole Genome Sequencing (WGS. PHRANA was not discriminatory enough to resolve the fine genetic relationships between the isolates. Conversely, WGS of nine isolates from near-surface and nine from near-carcass revealed five isolate specific SNPs, four of which were found only in different near-surface isolates. In support of our hypothesis, one surface-isolate lacked plasmid pXO1 and also harbored one of the unique SNPs. Taken together, our results suggest a limited soil-borne life cycle of B. anthracis.

  4. Antimicrobial effects of gold/copper sulphide (Gold/Copper monosulfide) core/shell nanoparticles on Bacillus anthracis spores and cells

    Science.gov (United States)

    Addae, Ebenezer

    Bacillus anthracis is a gram positive, rod shaped and spore forming bacteria. It causes anthrax, a deadly human and animal disease that can kill its victims in three days. The spores of B. anthracis can survive extreme environmental conditions for decades and germinate when exposed to proper conditions. Due to its potential as a bio-weapon, effective disinfectants that pose less harm to the environment and animals are urgently needed. Metal nanoparticles have the potential of killing microbial cells and spores. We present here the effect of Gold/Copper Sulphide core/shell (Au/CuS) nanoparticles on B. anthracis cells and spores. The results indicated that the continuous presence of 0.83 microM during the spore growth in nutrient medium completely inhibited spore outgrowth. Au/CuS nanoparticles at concentration of 4.15 μM completely inactivated B. anthracis cells (x 107) after 30 min of pre-treatment in any of the three buffers including water, PBS, and nutrient broth. However, the same and even higher concentrations of nanoparticles produce no significant spore (x 105) killing after 24 h of pre-treatment. SEM imaging, EDS analysis, and DNA extrusion experiments revealed that nanoparticles damaged the cell membrane causing DNA and cytosolic content efflux and eventually cell death. The study demonstrated the strong antimicrobial activity of Au/CuS nanoparticles to B. anthracis cells and revealed that Au/CuS NPs showed more effective inactivation effect against the cells than they did against the spores.

  5. Monoclonal Antibody Therapies against Anthrax

    OpenAIRE

    Zhaochun Chen; Mahtab Moayeri; Robert Purcell

    2011-01-01

    Anthrax is a highly lethal infectious disease caused by the spore-forming bacterium Bacillus anthracis. It not only causes natural infection in humans but also poses a great threat as an emerging bioterror agent. The lethality of anthrax is primarily attributed to the two major virulence factors: toxins and capsule. An extensive effort has been made to generate therapeutically useful monoclonal antibodies to each of the virulence components: protective antigen (PA), lethal factor (LF) and ede...

  6. Identification of Novel Raft Marker Protein, FlotP in Bacillus anthracis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Somani, Vikas K; Aggarwal, Somya; Singh, Damini; Prasad, Tulika; Bhatnagar, Rakesh

    2016-01-01

    Lipid rafts are dynamic, nanoscale assemblies of specific proteins and lipids, distributed heterogeneously on eukaryotic membrane. Flotillin-1, a conserved eukaryotic raft marker protein (RMP) harbor SPFH (Stomatin, Prohibitin, Flotillin, and HflK/C) and oligomerization domains to regulate various cellular processes through its interactions with other signaling or transport proteins. Rafts were thought to be absent in prokaryotes hitherto, but recent report of its presence and significance in physiology of Bacillus subtilis prompted us to investigate the same in pathogenic bacteria (PB) also. In prokaryotes, proteins of SPFH2a subfamily show highest identity to SPFH domain of Flotillin-1. Moreover, bacterial genome organization revealed that Flotillin homolog harboring SPFH2a domain exists in an operon with an upstream gene containing NFeD domain. Here, presence of RMP in PB was initially investigated in silico by analyzing the presence of SPFH2a, oligomerization domains in the concerned gene and NfeD domain in the adjacent upstream gene. After investigating 300 PB, four were found to harbor RMP. Among them, domains of Bas0525 (FlotP) of Bacillus anthracis (BA) showed highest identity with characteristic domains of RMP. Considering the global threat of BA as the bioterror agent, it was selected as a model for further in vitro characterization of rafts in PB. In silico and in vitro analysis showed significant similarity of FlotP with numerous attributes of Flotillin-1. Its punctate distribution on membrane with exclusive localization in detergent resistant membrane fraction; strongly favors presence of raft with RMP FlotP in BA. Furthermore, significant effect of Zaragozic acid (ZA), a raft associated lipid biosynthesis inhibitor, on several patho-physiological attributes of BA such as growth, morphology, membrane rigidity etc., were also observed. Specifically, a considerable decrease in membrane rigidity, strongly recommended presence of an unknown raft associated

  7. Naturally acquired antibodies to Bacillus anthracis protective antigen in vultures of southern Africa

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    P. C.B. Turnbull

    2008-08-01

    Full Text Available TURNBULLP, P.C.B. DIEKMANNM,M., KILIAN, J.W., VERSFELDW, W.,DE VOS, V., ARNTZENL, L.,WOLTER, K., BARTELS, P. & KOTZE, A. 2008.N aturally acquired antibodies to Bacillusa nthracisp rotective antigeni n vultureso f southern Africa. Onderstepoort Journal of Veterinary Research, T5:95-102 Sera from 19 wild caught vultures in northern Namibia and 15 (12 wild caught and three captive bred but with minimal histories in North West Province, South Africa, were examined by an enzyme-linked immunosorbenats say( ELISAf or antibodiesto the Bacillus anthracis toxin protective antigen (PA. As assessed from the baseline established with a control group of ten captive reared vultures with well-documented histories, elevated titres were found in 12 of the 19 (63% wild caught Namibian birds as compared with none of the 15 South African ones. There was a highly significant difference between the Namibian group as a hole and the other groups (P < 0.001 and no significant difference between the South African and control groups (P > 0.05. Numbers in the Namibian group were too small to determine any significances in species-, sex- or age-related differences within the raw data showing elevated titres in four out of six Cape Vultures, Gyps coprotheress, six out of ten Whitebacked Vultures, Gyps africanus, and one out of three Lappet-faced Vultures, Aegypiust racheliotus, or in five of six males versus three of seven females, and ten of 15 adults versus one of four juveniles. The results are in line with the available data on the incidence of anthrax in northern Namibia and South Africa and the likely contact of the vultures tested with anthrax carcasses. lt is not known whether elevated titre indicates infection per se in vultures or absorption of incompletely digested epitopes of the toxin or both. The results are discussed in relation to distances travelled by vultures as determined by new tracking techniques, how serology can reveal anthrax activity in an area and

  8. Identification of novel raft marker protein, FlotP in Bacillus anthracis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vikas Kumar Somani

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available Lipid rafts are dynamic, nanoscale assemblies of specific proteins and lipids, distributed heterogeneously on eukaryotic membrane. Flotillin-1, a conserved eukaryotic raft marker protein (RMP harbor SPFH (Stomatin, Prohibitin, Flotillin, and HflK/C and oligomerization domains to regulate various cellular processes through its interactions with other signaling or transport proteins. Rafts were thought to be absent in prokaryotes hitherto, but recent report of its presence and significance in physiology of Bacillus subtilis prompted us to investigate the same in pathogenic bacteria (PB also. In prokaryotes, proteins of SPFH2a subfamily show highest identity to SPFH domain of Flotillin-1. Moreover, bacterial genome organization revealed that Flotillin homologue harbouring SPFH2a domain exists in an operon with an upstream gene containing NFeD domain. Here, presence of RMP in PB was initially investigated in silico by analyzing the presence of SPFH2a, oligomerization domains in the concerned gene and NfeD domain in the adjacent upstream gene. After investigating 300 PB, 4 were found to harbor RMP. Among them, domains of Bas0525 (FlotP of Bacillus anthracis (BA showed highest identity with characteristic domains of RMP. Considering the global threat of BA as the bioterror agent, it was selected as a model for further in vitro characterization of rafts in PB. In silico and in vitro analysis showed significant similarity of FlotP with numerous attributes of Flotillin-1. Its punctate distribution on membrane with exclusive localization in detergent resistant membrane fraction; strongly favors presence of raft with RMP FlotP in BA. Furthermore, significant effect of Zaragozic acid (ZA, a raft associated lipid biosynthesis inhibitor, on several patho-physiological attributes of BA such as growth, morphology, membrane rigidity etc., were also observed. Specifically, a considerable decrease in membrane rigidity, strongly recommended presence of an unknown

  9. The repair of sub-lethal damage and the stimulated repair of potentially lethal damage in Saintpaulia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leenhouts, H P; Sijsma, M J; Litwiniszyn, M; Chadwick, K H

    1981-10-01

    The repair of sublethal and potentially lethal damage in stationary resting epidermal cells of Saintpaulia has been investigated. Fractionation experiments reveal an efficient repair of sublethal damage with a half-life of 1.9 hours. No repair of potentially lethal damage was noted when cultivation of the leaves was delayed for 24 hours after irradiation. At delay times of 2, 3 and 4 days some repair of potentially lethal damage has been found. A small pre-dose given 24 hours before a challenging dose improved the cells' chance to regenerate and the improvement has been shown to be compatible with an improved repair of potentially lethal damage induced by X-rays and fast neutrons. It hs been shown that the stimulated repair process takes 12 to 24 hours to develop, is dependent on the size of the pre-dose, has single-hit dose kinetics, and an r.b.e. of 1 for neutrons. With delayed cultivation of 2 days the stimulated repair process leads to an alteration in the shape of the regeneration (survival)-dose relationship which increases the low dose r.b.e. for neutrons from 10 to 35. PMID:6975252

  10. Development and evaluation of a conditionally lethal transgenic pink bollworm

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    A new area-wide pest control strategy using the pink bollworm, Pectinophora gossypiella (Saunders) (Lepidoptera: Gelechiidae), genetically transformed with a conditionally lethal gene, is under development. Conditional lethality of several transgenic pink bollworm strains was demonstrated in a series of laboratory rearing experiments. Pink bollworms were transformed with genetic constructs using the RIDL technology (Release of Insects with a Dominant Lethal gene) for development of an autocidal biological control system for possible supplement or replacement of radiation based sterile insect release. LA1124 is a lethal construct controlled by a tetracycline repressible transactivator protein (tTA), in which binding of tTA to its specific target sequence tetO drives production of more tTA. In the absence of tetracycline, this leads to lethality by high expression of tTA. When tetracycline is present, tTA does not bind tetO, and so the positive feedback cycle is not established and tTA remains at a low, non-lethal level for more detail on the tetO-tTA system). Tetracycline (in the form of chlortetracycline or CTC) is a normal part of the pink bollworm artificial diet, so such a strain of pink bollworm could readily be incorporated into the current mass-rearing system. Eight laboratory rearing experiments have been conducted with the LA1124 lines where pink bollworm heterozygous for the RIDL gene were crossed to wild type pink bollworm to produce an F1 generation with a 1:1 ratio of progeny of two genotypes: one that is heterozygous for the RIDL gene and one that is wild type. These were reared with and without CTC and mortality was scored at larval, pupal, and adult stages. This experiment was designed to simulate progeny mortality that would occur from the mating of a homozygous RIDL moth with a wild type pink bollworm after release of RIDL moths in a cotton field, while also including an internal wild type control (the wild type siblings of the heterozygous F1

  11. Thymic regeneration in lethally x-irradiated mice

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The effects of a lethal dose of 750 rad of whole-body x irradiation on the murine lymphomyeloid complex have been investigated. During the first 4 days after exposure there was a marked decrease in the weight of the thymus, spleen, and lymph nodes and in the cellularity of the femoral bone marrow. Subsequently, a phase of thymic regeneration, maximal on the tenth day, was observed in the absence of detectable regeneration elsewhere in the lymphomyeloid complex. The thymus, from the third to the fifth days postirradiation, although very hypocellular, was a site of extensive tritiated thymidine incorporation indicating the presence of a precursor cell population undertaking DNA synthesis. No comparable changes in the tritiated thymidine incorporation of the spleen, lymph nodes or bone marrow were observed. Thymic regeneration in the absence of detectable regeneration elsewhere in the lymphomyeloid complex occurred over a range of doses within the lethal range in several strains of mice

  12. Dominant lethals following administration of tritium (THO) to rat males

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Adult rat males were given a single intraperitoneal tritium (THO) injection at 0,01 or 0,001 mCi/g body weight (1/100 or 1/1000 of LDsub(50/30), respectively). Twelve days after treatment each male was mated to 3-5 intact females, and the latter were replaced by fresh ones every 12 following days over a 120-day period. Mated females were killed to score conceptions, corpora lutea, and live and dead embryos. Estimations were made of F1 prenatal death rate (according to Bateman, 1958) and the frequency of induction of dominant lethal mutations (according to Roehrborn, 1970). The results observed indicated paternal exposure to tritium (THO) to produce dominant lethals both in pre- and post-meiotic germ cells in the rat. The extent of the genetic damage studied was found to depend on the amount of activity administered as well as on the time interval between treatment and conception. (author)

  13. Regeneration of transplanted intact cell populations in lethally irradiated hydra

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    A single irradiation of the hydra Pelmatohydra robusta with 0.4 to 10 kR of x rays induced no lethal effects at all, while animals exposed to 40 kR ceased to produce a bud within 24 hr and died within a limited period of time, varying from 10 to 14 days at 250C, and from 28 to 50 days at 100C. This lethal dose of x rays inhibited the proliferation of the cells completely and destroyed interstitial cells. When a small cell mass, which was too small to regenerate alone, was transplanted from the subhypostomal region of an intact animal into the subhypostomal region of the irradiated hydra, the recipient began to produce buds by the proliferation of the graft cells. However, the transplantation of intact peduncle tissue, in which mitotic figures and interstitial cells rarely occurred, failed to produce new buds

  14. Drug for the treatment of acute lethal or chronic radiolesions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The patent claim refers to a drug for total or partial treatment of acute lethal or chronic radiolesions and their harmful effects, marked by the fact that it contains the following components for a daily dose: 103 - 8 x 105 KJU of a Kallikrein-Inhibitor-Polypeptide, 1 mg - 2 x 102 mg thiamine diphosphate, 0.1 mg - 102 mg of an α1-glycoprotein complex, 1 mg - 2 x 102 mg L-Tryptophane, 1 mg - 103 mg Arginin, and 0.1 mg - 102 mg of a lipoprotein complex. The drug is marked by being effective in 60-70% of the cases of Wistar- or R-incest rats after use over at least 30 days. It is also effective in 50-60% of the cases of York-pigs after LD 80-100/30 C060, the foregoing knowledge of the (lethal) moment of radiation being unnecessary. (orig./MG)

  15. Hematologic syndrome in man modeled from mammalian lethality

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Data on acute radiation lethality due to failure of the hematologic system in rats, mice, dogs, swine, monkeys and man are analyzed. Based on the available data, the mortality incidences for 1-100% levels can be computed directly if one has only an estimate of the dose lethal to 50% of the population (LD50) for the mammalian strain and radiation environment of interest. The sole restriction is that the dose profile to the marrow be moderately uniform. If an LD50 for any exposure situation has been measured, then one can readily scale to any desired situation through implicit-biological and empirical-physical relationships. The LD50 for man, exposed to an isotropic cloud of photons, and knowledge of the bone-marrow dose profiles readily permit evaluation of the model for other levels of human mortality from different irradiating particles, partial body irradiation and spatially dependent and/or mixed radiation environments. (author)

  16. Two Modes of Pseudorabies Virus Neuroinvasion and Lethality in Mice

    OpenAIRE

    Brittle, Elizabeth E.; Reynolds, Ashley E.; Enquist, L W

    2004-01-01

    We describe two distinct modes of neuroinvasion and lethality after murine flank inoculation with virulent and attenuated strains of pseudorabies virus (PRV). Mice infected with virulent (e.g., PRV-Becker, PRV-Kaplan, or PRV-NIA3) strains self-mutilate their flank skin in response to virally induced pruritus, die rapidly with no identifiable symptoms of central nervous system (CNS) infection such as behavioral abnormalities, and have little infectious virus or viral antigen in the brain. In d...

  17. Neonatal Carnitine Palmitoyltransferase II Deficiency: A Lethal Entity

    OpenAIRE

    Malik, Sushma; Paldiwal, Ashutosh Abhimanyu; Korday, Charusheela Sujit; Jadhav, Shruti Sudhir

    2015-01-01

    Carnitine palmitoyltransferase II (CPTII) deficiency is a rare disorder of mitochondrial fatty acid oxidation with autosomal recessive mode of inheritance. Three classic forms of CPT II deficiency have been described namely the lethal neonatal form, severe infantile hepatocardiomuscular form and the myopathic form. We present a three-day-old female child, admitted to us for lethargy, icterus, low sugars and convulsions. Persistent non ketotic hypoglycaemia, hyperammonemia, raised liver enzyme...

  18. Brine shrimp lethality bioassay of selected Centaurea L. species (Asteraceae)

    OpenAIRE

    Janaćković P.; Tešević V.; Marin P.D.; Milosavljević S.; Duletić-Laušević Sonja; Janaćković Slavica; Veljić M.

    2008-01-01

    Ether extracts of 15 Centaurea L. species (Asteraceae) methanol extracts of 12species, and cnicin isolated from C. derventana were tested for general bioactivity using the brine shrimp lethality test. Cnicin showed the most potent activity with LC50 0.2. Also, ether extract of C. splendens showed significant activity with LC50 7.3, as did methanol extract of C. arenaria with LC50 12.4.

  19. A pedigree study of perinatally lethal renal disease.

    OpenAIRE

    Bankier, A; de Campo, M; Newell, R.; Rogers, J. G.; Danks, D M

    1985-01-01

    A family study of perinatally lethal renal disease (PLRD) was undertaken in the State of Victoria, Australia, for the years 1961 to 1980. A total of 221 cases was ascertained through hospital and necropsy records and confirmed by necropsy findings. There were 134 cases of bilateral renal agenesis (BRA), 34 cases of unilateral agenesis with dysplasia of the other kidney (URA/RD), 42 cases of bilateral renal dysplasia (BRD), and 11 cases of renal aplasia. Parents of 131 babies were interviewed ...

  20. Osteogenesis imperfecta (lethal) bones contain types III and V collagens.

    OpenAIRE

    Pope, F. M.; Nicholls, A. C.; Eggleton, C; Narcissi, P; Hey, E N; Parkin, J M

    1980-01-01

    Lethal osteogenesis imperfecta (OI-L) and normal fetal bones contain types I and V collagen with relatively more type V in OI-L bones. The latter, unlike normal fetal bone, also contain some type III collagen. Such altered collagen ratios could directly produce the bony fragility and radiotranslucency of OI-L bones. Since this is an inherited osteoporosis similar alterations in acquired osteoporoses are also possible.

  1. Injury Risk Assessment of Non-Lethal Projectile Head Impacts

    OpenAIRE

    Oukara, Amar; Nsiampa, Nestor; Robbe, Cyril; Papy, Alexandre

    2014-01-01

    Kinetic energy non-lethal projectiles are used to impart sufficient effect onto a person in order to deter uncivil or hazardous behavior with a low probability of permanent injury. Since their first use, real cases indicate that the injuries inflicted by such projectiles may be irreversible and sometimes lead to death, especially for the head impacts. Given the high velocities and the low masses involved in such impacts, the assessment approaches proposed in automotive crash tests and sports ...

  2. Evaluation of the FilmArray® system for detection of Bacillus anthracis, Francisella tularensis, and Yersinia pestis

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Seiner, Derrick R.; Colburn, Heather A.; Baird, Cheryl L.; Bartholomew, Rachel A.; Straub, Tim M.; Victry, Kristin D.; Hutchison, Janine R.; Valentine, Nancy B.; Bruckner-Lea, Cindy J.

    2013-04-29

    To evaluate the sensitivity and specificity of the Idaho Technologies FilmArray® Biothreat Panel for the detection of Bacillus anthracis (Ba), Francisella tularensis (Ft), and Yersinia pestis (Yp) DNA, and demonstrate the detection of Ba spores. Methods and Results: DNA samples from Ba, Ft and Yp strains and near-neighbors, and live Ba spores were analyzed using the Biothreat Panel, a multiplexed PCR-based assay for 17 pathogens and toxins. Sensitivity studies with DNA suggest a limit of detection of 250 genome equivalents (GEs) per sample. Furthermore, the correct call of Ft, Yp or Bacillus species was made in 63 of 72 samples tested at 25 GE or less. With samples containing 25 Ba Sterne spores, at least one of the two possible Ba markers were identified in all samples tested. We observed no cross-reactivity with near-neighbor DNAs.

  3. Evaluation of New Dihydrophthalazine-Appended 2,4-Diaminopyrimidines against Bacillus anthracis: Improved Syntheses Using a New Pincer Complex

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nagendra Prasad Muddala

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available The synthesis and evaluation of ten new dihydrophthalazine-appended 2,4-diaminopyrimidines as potential drugs to treat Bacillus anthracis is reported. An improved synthesis utilizing a new pincer catalyst, dichlorobis[1-(dicyclohexylphosphanyl-piperidine]palladium(II, allows the final Heck coupling to be performed at 90 °C using triethylamine as the base. These milder conditions have been used to achieve improved yields for new and previously reported substrates with functional groups that degrade or react at the normal 140 °C reaction temperature. An analytical protocol for separating the S and R enantiomers of two of the most active compounds is also disclosed. Finally, the X-ray structure for the most active enantiomer of the lead compound, (S-RAB1, is given.

  4. A multiplex bead-based suspension array assay for interrogation of phylogenetically informative single nucleotide polymorphisms for Bacillus anthracis

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Thierry, Simon; Hamidjaja, Raditijo A.; Girault, Guillaume;

    2013-01-01

    reaction for signal amplification and labeling of ligation products carrying SNP targets. These innovations significantly reduce cross-reactivity observed when initial MOLigo probes were used and enhance hybridization efficiency onto the microsphere array, respectively. When evaluated on 73 representative...... need. By using the versatile Luminex® xTAG technology, we developed an efficient multiplexed SNP genotyping assay to score 13 phylogenetically informative SNPs within the genome of Bacillus anthracis. The Multiplex Oligonucleotide Ligation-PCR procedure (MOL-PCR) described by Deshpande et al., 2010 has...... been modified and adapted for simultaneous interrogation of 13 biallelic canonical SNPs in a 13-plex assay. Changes made to the originally published method include the design of allele-specific dual-priming-oligonucleotides (DPOs) as competing detection probes (MOLigo probes) and use of asymmetric PCR...

  5. A strain-variable bacteriocin in Bacillus anthracis and Bacillus cereus with repeated Cys-Xaa-Xaa motifs

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Haft Daniel H

    2009-04-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Bacteriocins are peptide antibiotics from ribosomally translated precursors, produced by bacteria often through extensive post-translational modification. Minimal sequence conservation, short gene lengths, and low complexity sequence can hinder bacteriocin identification, even during gene calling, so they are often discovered by proximity to accessory genes encoding maturation, immunity, and export functions. This work reports a new subfamily of putative thiazole-containing heterocyclic bacteriocins. It appears universal in all strains of Bacillus anthracis and B. cereus, but has gone unrecognized because it is always encoded far from its maturation protein operon. Patterns of insertions and deletions among twenty-four variants suggest a repeating functional unit of Cys-Xaa-Xaa. Reviewers This article was reviewed by Andrei Osterman and Lakshminarayan Iyer.

  6. The characteristic of lethality as an indicator of combinad infections

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    V. V. Nechaev

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available The Combined Socially Important Infections (CSII in St. Petersburg are result of accumulation of chroniogenic potential of HIV infection, tuberculosis and chronic viral hepatitis B and C. The analysis of a lethality from the combined infection (CI for the long-term period in dynamics by years, showed to age and sexual groups and other signs that it exceeds that from tuberculosis by 2,4 times, from chronic hepatitis by 7,5 times. High level of a lethality of persons of young age, sharp growth of tuberculosis of intra chest, intra belly lymph nodes, frequent generalization of process with involvement in process of a liver, a spleen, kidneys testifies to the leading role of HIV infection in failures of diseases. The system and algorithm of proofs about the reasons of lethal outcomes of SI have to be based on representative selections. For this purpose it is necessary to carry out registration of HIV infection not only in the AIDS centers, but also regional in the form of the uniform register SI (HIV+TB+HIC or HIB for the purpose of complex impact on epidemic process.

  7. Intact alternation performance in high lethality suicide attempters.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Keilp, John G; Wyatt, Gwinne; Gorlyn, Marianne; Oquendo, Maria A; Burke, Ainsley K; John Mann, J

    2014-09-30

    Suicide attempters often perform poorly on tasks linked to ventral prefrontal cortical (VPFC) function. Object Alternation (OA) - a VPFC probe - has not been used in these studies. In this study, currently depressed medication-free past suicide attempters whose most severe attempt was of high (n=31) vs. low (n=64) lethality, 114 medication-free depressed non-attempters, and 86 non-patients completed a computerized OA task. Participants also completed comparison tasks assessing the discriminant validity of OA (Wisconsin Card Sort), its concurrent validity relative to tasks associated with past attempt status (computerized Stroop task, Buschke Selective Reminding Test), and its construct validity as a VPFC measure (Go-No Go and Iowa Gambling Task). Against expectations, high lethality suicide attempters - the majority of whom used non-violent methods in their attempts with some planning - outperformed other depressed groups on OA, with no group differences observed on Wisconsin Card Sort. Despite intact performance on OA, past attempters exhibited deficits on the Stroop and Buschke. OA performance was associated with performance on Go-No Go and Iowa Gambling, confirming that OA measures a similar construct. VPFC dysfunction may not be a characteristic of all suicide attempters, especially those who make more carefully planned, non-violent - though potentially lethal - attempts. PMID:24878299

  8. Two-component system cross-regulation integrates Bacillus anthracis response to heme and cell envelope stress.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Laura A Mike

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available Two-component signaling systems (TCSs are one of the mechanisms that bacteria employ to sense and adapt to changes in the environment. A prototypical TCS functions as a phosphorelay from a membrane-bound sensor histidine kinase (HK to a cytoplasmic response regulator (RR that controls target gene expression. Despite significant homology in the signaling domains of HKs and RRs, TCSs are thought to typically function as linear systems with little to no cross-talk between non-cognate HK-RR pairs. Here we have identified several cell envelope acting compounds that stimulate a previously uncharacterized Bacillus anthracis TCS. Furthermore, this TCS cross-signals with the heme sensing TCS HssRS; therefore, we have named it HssRS interfacing TCS (HitRS. HssRS reciprocates cross-talk to HitRS, suggesting a link between heme toxicity and cell envelope stress. The signaling between HssRS and HitRS occurs in the parental B. anthracis strain; therefore, we classify HssRS-HitRS interactions as cross-regulation. Cross-talk between HssRS and HitRS occurs at both HK-RR and post-RR signaling junctions. Finally, HitRS also regulates a previously unstudied ABC transporter implicating this transporter in the response to cell envelope stress. This chemical biology approach to probing TCS signaling provides a new model for understanding how bacterial signaling networks are integrated to enable adaptation to complex environments such as those encountered during colonization of the vertebrate host.

  9. Comparison of Packed Beds and Qiagen Columns for Recovering Trace Amounts of B. anthracis DNA from Liquid Suspensions

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sorensen, K; Arroyo, E; Erler, A; Christian, A T; Camp, D; Wheeler, E K

    2006-06-23

    The goal of this work was to optimize and evaluate LLNL's in-bed amplification technology to improve the level of detection for suspensions containing trace amounts of anthracis DNA. The binding/cleaning performance of the packed bed is compared to the conventional commercial approach; Qiagen column cleanup and elution, followed by detection through an ex-situ amplification process. Five liquid suspensions were spiked with B.anthracis DNA in concentration series. These suspensions were: (1) water, (2) water with EDTA, (3) dirty water from carpet extraction, (4) dirty carpet extraction with phosphate buffered saline (PBS) plus 0.1% Tween 20 plus 0.1% gelatin, and (5) a subway aerosol collected in water. Each suspension matrix was spiked with DNA and injected (in replicate) into either Qiagen Microcolumns (using the kit processing instructions) or LLNL's packed bed (using the LLNL in-bed purification and amplification protocol). The process output was assayed by quantitative polymerase chain reaction (QPCR). Table ES-1 shows the level of DNA (pg per 100 uL of input suspension) that resulted in successful amplification for all reactions (X=Y), and the level for which at least one of the reactions was successful (X>0). For each suspension and DNA concentration, there were Y QPCR assays of which X showed successful amplification. LLNL's packed bed technology outperformed Qiagen Microcolumns for all five suspensions, typically by one order of magnitude in both the limit of assured detection (all reactions positive), and the lower limit of detection (some reactions positive).

  10. Lethal effects of solar radiation in proficient and deficient bacteria in repair systems

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    A study of the lethal action of solar radiation on strains of E.coli K12, proficient or deficient in repair systems, as well as the wild type strain gene products are involved in repair of damage induced by solar radiation. The inactivation of the various bacterial strains (normalized to a dose equivalent to radiation at a wavelength 254 nm) suggests that the more energetic wavelengths of the solar spectrum (290-320 nm) could be responsible for the primary damage that occurs in the DNA. The reduction in the shoulder of the survival curve in wild type strains in indicative of induction of sub-lethal damage in this region of the curve. Analysing solar inactivation curves of the bacterial strains (normalised by spore dosimetry) together with those of the same strains irradiated with UV at 254 nm, it was evident that 254 nm is not the ideal wavelength for comparison. This analysis also indicated that in addition to damage to DNA, other factors are involved in the solar radiation inactivation of wild type strains. (author)

  11. Delivery of Non-Native Cargo into Mammalian Cells Using Anthrax Lethal Toxin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rabideau, Amy E; Pentelute, Bradley Lether

    2016-06-17

    The intracellular delivery of peptide and protein therapeutics is a major challenge due to the plasma membrane, which acts as a barrier between the extracellular environment and the intracellular milieu. Over the past two decades, a nontoxic PA/LFN delivery platform derived from anthrax lethal toxin has been developed for the transport of non-native cargo into the cytosol of cells in order to understand the translocation process through a protective antigen (PA) pore and to probe intracellular biological functions. Enzyme-mediated ligation using sortase A and native chemical ligation are two facile methods used to synthesize these non-native conjugates, inaccessible by recombinant technology. Cargo molecules that translocate efficiently include enzymes from protein toxins, antibody mimic proteins, and peptides of varying lengths and non-natural amino acid compositions. The PA pore has been found to effectively convey over 30 known cargos other than native lethal factor (LF; i.e., non-native) with diverse sequences and functionalities on the LFN transporter protein. All together these studies demonstrated that non-native cargos must adopt an unfolded or extended conformation and contain a suitable charge composition in order to efficiently pass through the PA pore. This review provides insight into design parameters for the efficient delivery of new cargos using PA and LFN. PMID:27055654

  12. Molecular markers in prostate cancer.Part I:predicting lethality

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Sachin Agrawal; William D.Dunsmuir

    2009-01-01

    Assessing the lethality of 'early,' potentially organ-confined prostate cancer (PCa) is one of the central controversies in moderu-day urological clinical practice.Such cases are often considered for radical 'curative' treatment,although active surveillance may be equally appropriate for many men.Moreover,the balance between judicious intervention and overtreatment can be difficult to judge.The patient's age,comorbidities,family history and philosophy of self-health care can be weighed against clinical features such as the palpability of disease,the number and percentage of biopsy cores involved with the disease,histological grade,presenting prostate-specific antigen (PSA) and possible previous PSA kinetics.For many years,scientists and physicians have sought additional molecular factors that may be predictive for disease stage,progression and lethality.Usually,claims for a 'new' unique marker fall short of true clinical value.More often than not,such molecular markers are useful only in multivariate models.This review summarizes relevant molecular markers and models reported up to and including 2008.

  13. [Bladder tumor lethality. Results in the autonomous community of Rioja between 1975-1991].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fernández Fernández, A; Gil Fabra, J; Fernández Ruíz, M; Angulo Castellanos, M G; Blanco Martín, E; Otero Mauricio, G

    1998-01-01

    Between 1975-1991, a total of 557 cases of bladder carcinoma were identified in the Autonomous Community of La Rioja (CAR) which were followed up to December 1994. The overall lethality was 21.9%. 492 cases with 22.35% lethality were identified in males. In females, however, there was 65 cases with 18.46% lethality. The comparison of males and females lethality resulted in p = 0.525. Lethality between cases diagnosed within each 5-year period analyzed is: 1975-1981: 177 cases, lethality 23.72%. 1982-1986: 168 cases, lethality 30.95%. 1987-1991: 212 cases, lethality 13.20%. Between the first and the second 5-year periods, p = 0.132; between the first and third 5-year periods p = 0.007 and between the second and third 5-year periods p CAR for a 22.35% lethality. Lethality is higher in males that in females but the difference is not statistically significant. In the last 5-year period assessed, 1987-1991, a reduction of lethality from bladder neoplasms has been documented. PMID:9807870

  14. Development of a killed but metabolically active anthracis vaccine candidate strain%一种KBMA炭疽疫苗候选株的研制

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    沈非; 刘纯杰; 袁盛凌; 展德文; 王艳春; 任敏; 陶好霞; 王芃; 王令春; 陈冬生

    2011-01-01

    Anthrax is a zoonosis caused by Bacillus anthracis, which seriously affects human health. In recent years, a special phenomenon is found that the metabolic active of a bacterium remains after it is killed. To development of a KBMA (killed but metabolically active) Bacillus anthracis vaccine candidate strain, a plasmid pMAD and a recombinase system Cre-loxP were used to knockout the uvrAB gene of B. anthracis AP422 which lacks both of two plasmids pXOl and pXO2. The results of PCR and RT-PCR shows that uvrAB genes were deleted from B. anthracis AP422 chromosome successfully. The constructed B. anthracis AP422ΔuvrAB was inactivated by photochemical treatment (PCT) including an exposure in a long-wave-length ultraviolet (UVA)light and a treatment of 8-Methoxypsoralen (8-MOP), then the metabolic activity were detected by the method of MTS. The results showed that the killed B. anthracis AP422ΔuvrAB maintained a highly metabolic activity for at least 4 hours, showing a state of KBMA. The KBMA strain of B. anthracis AP422ΔuvrAB provides the prospective vaccine candidate strain for anthrax.%炭疽病是由炭疽芽胞杆菌Bacillus anthracis 引起的一种人畜共患传染病,严重影响着人类的健康.近年来在细菌疫苗的研究中发现一种特殊的现象:细菌被杀死后,体内的代谢活性却仍然维持(Killed but metabolically active,KBMA).此发现为炭疽新型疫苗候选株的研制提供了新思路.先通过同源重组的方法,利用pMAD质粒和Cre-loxP重组酶系统完成对缺失两个毒性大质粒的炭疽芽胞杆菌减毒株AP422的uvrAB基因的敲除,得到AP422△uvrAB菌株,然后通过光化学处理(包括长波紫外光的照射和8-甲氧基补骨脂素处理),使炭疽芽胞杆菌AP422△uvrAB失去繁殖能力.利用四氮唑化合物MTS检测其代谢活性,表明光化学处理杀死后的炭疽芽胞杆菌AP422△uvrAB在至少4 h内维持一个很高的代谢活性水平,即具备

  15. Immunization with a Recombinant, Pseudomonas fluorescens-Expressed, Mutant Form of Bacillus anthracis-Derived Protective Antigen Protects Rabbits from Anthrax Infection

    OpenAIRE

    Reed, Matthew D.; Wilder, Julie A.; Mega, William M.; Hutt, Julie A.; Kuehl, Philip J.; Valderas, Michelle W.; Chew, Lawrence L.; Liang, Bertrand C.; Squires, Charles H.

    2015-01-01

    Protective antigen (PA), one of the components of the anthrax toxin, is the major component of human anthrax vaccine (Biothrax). Human anthrax vaccines approved in the United States and Europe consist of an alum-adsorbed or precipitated (respectively) supernatant material derived from cultures of toxigenic, non-encapsulated strains of Bacillus anthracis. Approved vaccination schedules in humans with either of these vaccines requires several booster shots and occasionally causes adverse inject...

  16. A Novel Immunogenic Spore Coat-Associated Protein in Bacillus Anthracis: Characterization via Proteomics Approaches and a Vector-Based Vaccine System

    OpenAIRE

    Liu, Yu-Tsueng; Lin, Shwu-Bin; Huang, Cheng-Po; Huang, Chun-Ming

    2007-01-01

    New generation anthrax vaccines have been actively explored with the aim of enhancing efficacies and decreasing undesirable side effects that could be caused by licensed vaccines. Targeting novel antigens and/or eliminating the requirements for multiple needle injections and adjuvants are major objectives in the development of new anthrax vaccines. Using proteomics approaches, we identified a spore coat-associated protein (SCAP) in Bacillus anthracis. An E. coli vector-based vaccine system wa...

  17. Immunological Correlates for Protection against Intranasal Challenge of Bacillus anthracis Spores Conferred by a Protective Antigen-Based Vaccine in Rabbits

    OpenAIRE

    Weiss, Shay; Kobiler, David; Levy, Haim; Marcus, Hadar; Pass, Avi; Rothschild, Nili; Altboum, Zeev

    2006-01-01

    Correlates between immunological parameters and protection against Bacillus anthracis infection in animals vaccinated with protective antigen (PA)-based vaccines could provide surrogate markers to evaluate the putative protective efficiency of immunization in humans. In previous studies we demonstrated that neutralizing antibody levels serve as correlates for protection in guinea pigs (S. Reuveny et al., Infect. Immun. 69:2888-2893, 2001; H. Marcus et al., Infect. Immun. 72:3471-3477, 2004). ...

  18. Bacillus anthracis spores germinate extracellularly at air–liquid interface in an in vitro lung model under serum‐free conditions

    OpenAIRE

    Powell, J D; Hutchison, J.R.; Hess, B.M.; Straub, T.M.

    2015-01-01

    Abstract Aims To better understand the parameters that govern spore dissemination after lung exposure using in vitro cell systems. Methods and Results We evaluated the kinetics of uptake, germination and proliferation of Bacillus anthracis Sterne spores in association with human primary lung epithelial cells, Calu‐3 and A549 cell lines. We also analysed the influence of various cell culture medium formulations related to spore germination. Conclusions We found negligible spore uptake by epith...

  19. Characterization of Bacillus anthracis-Like Bacteria Isolated from Wild Great Apes from Côte d'Ivoire and Cameroon

    OpenAIRE

    Klee, Silke R.; Özel, Muhsin; Appel, Bernd; Boesch, Christophe; Ellerbrok, Heinz; Jacob, Daniela; Holland, Gudrun; Leendertz, Fabian H; Pauli, Georg; Grunow, Roland; Nattermann, Herbert

    2006-01-01

    We present the microbiological and molecular characterization of bacteria isolated from four chimpanzees and one gorilla thought to have died of an anthrax-like disease in Côte d'Ivoire and Cameroon. These isolates differed significantly from classic Bacillus anthracis by the following criteria: motility, resistance to the gamma phage, and, for isolates from Cameroon, resistance to penicillin G. A capsule was expressed not only after induction by CO2 and bicarbonate but also under normal grow...

  20. Generierung und genotypische Untersuchung eines Ciprofloxacin-resistenten Bacillus cereus Stammes und Entwicklung von real-time-PCR-Schnelltests zum Nachweis von Resistenzen gegen Ciprofloxacin in Bacillus anthracis

    OpenAIRE

    Hübner, Anika

    2014-01-01

    Die gebräuchliche Therapie gegen Milzbrand besteht aus der Gabe von Antibiotika. Als Therapie der Wahl gilt hierbei das Fluorochinolon Ciprofloxacin. Resistenzen gegen dieses Antibiotikum wurden bei B. anthracis in vivo noch nicht, in vitro jedoch im Rahmen mehrerer Studien beschrieben. Es existieren herkömmliche Resistenztests, wie der Gradientendiffusions- oder der Mikrodilutionstest, welche bei einer Milzbranderkrankung genutzt werden können. Diese nehmen jedoch aufgrund der kulturellen An...

  1. A Field Investigation of Bacillus anthracis Contamination of U.S. Department of Agriculture and Other Washington, D.C., Buildings during the Anthrax Attack of October 2001

    OpenAIRE

    Higgins, James A.; Cooper, Mary; Schroeder-Tucker, Linda; Black, Scott; Miller, David; Karns, Jeffrey S.; Manthey, Erlynn; Breeze, Roger; Perdue, Michael L

    2003-01-01

    In response to a bioterrorism attack in the Washington, D.C., area in October 2001, a mobile laboratory (ML) was set up in the city to conduct rapid molecular tests on environmental samples for the presence of Bacillus anthracis spores and to route samples for further culture analysis. The ML contained class I laminar-flow hoods, a portable autoclave, two portable real-time PCR devices (Ruggedized Advanced Pathogen Identification Device [RAPID]), and miscellaneous supplies and equipment to pr...

  2. Discrimination of Bacillus anthracis Spores by Direct in-situ Analysis of Matrix-Assisted Laser Desorption/Ionization Time-Of-Flight Mass Spectrometry

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The rapid and accurate identification of biological agents is a critical step in the case of bio-terror and biological warfare attacks. Recently, matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization time-of-flight mass spectrometry has been widely used for the identification of microorganisms. In this study, we describe a method for the rapid and accurate discrimination of Bacillus anthracis spores using MALDI-TOF MS. Our direct in-situ analysis of MALDI-TOF MS does not involve subsequent high-resolution mass analyses and sample preparation steps. This method allowed the detection of species-specific biomarkers from each Bacillus spores. Especially, B. anthracis spores had specific biomarker peaks at 2503, 3089, 3376, 6684, 6698, 6753, and 6840 m/z. Cluster and PCA analyses of the mass spectra of Bacillus spores revealed distinctively separated clusters and within-groups similarity. Therefore, we believe that this method is effective in the real-time identification of biological warfare agents such as B. anthracis as well as other microorganisms in the field

  3. Structures of an alanine racemase from Bacillus anthracis (BA0252) in the presence and absence of (R)-1-aminoethylphosphonic acid (l-Ala-P)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Structures of BA0252, an alanine racemase from B. anthracis, in the presence and absence of the inhibitor (R)-1-aminoethylphosphonic acid (l-Ala-P) and determined by X-ray crystallography to resolutions of 2.1 and 1.47 Å, respectively, are described. Bacillus anthracis, the causative agent of anthrax, has been targeted by the Oxford Protein Production Facility to validate high-throughput protocols within the Structural Proteomics in Europe project. As part of this work, the structures of an alanine racemase (BA0252) in the presence and absence of the inhibitor (R)-1-aminoethylphosphonic acid (l-Ala-P) have determined by X-ray crystallo@@graphy to resolutions of 2.1 and 1.47 Å, respectively. Difficulties in crystallizing this protein were overcome by the use of reductive methylation. Alanine racemase has attracted much interest as a possible target for anti-anthrax drugs: not only is d-alanine a vital component of the bacterial cell wall, but recent studies also indicate that alanine racemase, which is accessible in the exosporium, plays a key role in inhibition of germination in B. anthracis. These structures confirm the binding mode of l-Ala-P but suggest an unexpected mechanism of inhibition of alanine racemase by this compound and could provide a basis for the design of improved alanine racemase inhibitors with potential as anti-anthrax therapies

  4. EXCALIBIR - A space experiment in orbital debris lethality

    Science.gov (United States)

    Culp, Robert D.; Dickey, Michael R.

    1991-01-01

    The study proposes a space experiment using extended Space Shuttle external tanks to test the impact of orbital debris. The External Tank Calibrated Impact Response test, EXCALIBIR, is a low-cost low-risk, high-payoff approach to investigating the threat to resident space objects posed by untrackable orbital debris, to provide lethality data to the kinetic energy weapons community, and to aid in the testing of space and missile interceptor technology. This experiment is a feasible use of existing assets - the external tank, observation and data collection facilities, launch facilities, and interceptor technology and tests planned for other programs.

  5. Neonatal Carnitine Palmitoyltransferase II Deficiency: A Lethal Entity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Malik, Sushma; Paldiwal, Ashutosh Abhimanyu; Korday, Charusheela Sujit; Jadhav, Shruti Sudhir

    2015-10-01

    Carnitine palmitoyltransferase II (CPTII) deficiency is a rare disorder of mitochondrial fatty acid oxidation with autosomal recessive mode of inheritance. Three classic forms of CPT II deficiency have been described namely the lethal neonatal form, severe infantile hepatocardiomuscular form and the myopathic form. We present a three-day-old female child, admitted to us for lethargy, icterus, low sugars and convulsions. Persistent non ketotic hypoglycaemia, hyperammonemia, raised liver enzymes with hepatomegaly and cardiomyopathy led to the suspicion of fatty acid oxidation defect. Tandem mass spectrometry helped to clinch the diagnosis of CPT II Deficiency in the present case. PMID:26557586

  6. Ceramide targets autophagosomes to mitochondria and induces lethal mitophagy

    OpenAIRE

    Sentelle, R. David; Senkal, Can E.; Jiang, Wenhui; Ponnusamy, Suriyan; Gencer, Salih; Selvam, Shanmugam Panneer; Ramshesh, Venkat K.; Peterson, Yuri K.; Lemasters, John J.; Szulc, Zdzislaw M.; Bielawski, Jacek; Ogretmen, Besim

    2012-01-01

    Mechanisms by which autophagy promotes cell survival or death are unclear. We provide evidence that C18-pyridinium ceramide (C18-Pyr-Cer) treatment, or endogenous C18-ceramide generation by ceramide synthase 1 (CerS1) expression mediates autophagic cell death, independent of apoptosis in human cancer cells. C18-ceramide-induced lethal autophagy was regulated via microtubule-associated protein 1 light chain 3 beta lipidation (LC3B-II) and selective targeting of mitochondria by LC3B-II-containi...

  7. Lethal subarachnoid bleeding under immunosuppressive therapy due to mycotic arteritis

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Weigel, S.; Kloska, S.; Freund, M. [Dept. of Clinical Radiology, Univ. Hospital of Muenster, Muenster (Germany); Kehl, H.G. [Dept. of Pediatric Cardiology, Univ. Hospital of Muenster, Muenster (Germany)

    2003-12-01

    A subarachnoid haemorrhage (SAH) occurred 67 days after cardiac transplantation in 10-year-old girl with consecutive immunocompromising therapy. Neither digital subtraction angiography (DSA) nor computed tomographic angiography showed signs of intracranial vascular malformations. One month before the lethal SAH occurred, she had developed arterial hypertension and attacks of severe headache with cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) pleocytosis while CT scans showed an infarct of the left thalamus. Pathologic findings established the rare diagnosis of SAH due to aspergillosis-related mycotic arteritis. Imaging characteristics are presented. (orig.)

  8. Embryonic Lethality Due to Arrested Cardiac Development in Psip1/Hdgfrp2 Double-Deficient Mice.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hao Wang

    Full Text Available Hepatoma-derived growth factor (HDGF related protein 2 (HRP2 and lens epithelium-derived growth factor (LEDGF/p75 are closely related members of the HRP2 protein family. LEDGF/p75 has been implicated in numerous human pathologies including cancer, autoimmunity, and infectious disease. Knockout of the Psip1 gene, which encodes for LEDGF/p75 and the shorter LEDGF/p52 isoform, was previously shown to cause perinatal lethality in mice. The function of HRP2 was by contrast largely unknown. To learn about the role of HRP2 in development, we knocked out the Hdgfrp2 gene, which encodes for HRP2, in both normal and Psip1 knockout mice. Hdgfrp2 knockout mice developed normally and were fertile. By contrast, the double deficient mice died at approximate embryonic day (E 13.5. Histological examination revealed ventricular septal defect (VSD associated with E14.5 double knockout embryos. To investigate the underlying molecular mechanism(s, RNA recovered from ventricular tissue was subjected to RNA-sequencing on the Illumina platform. Bioinformatic analysis revealed several genes and biological pathways that were significantly deregulated by the Psip1 knockout and/or Psip1/Hdgfrp2 double knockout. Among the dozen genes known to encode for LEDGF/p75 binding factors, only the expression of Nova1, which encodes an RNA splicing factor, was significantly deregulated by the knockouts. However the expression of other RNA splicing factors, including the LEDGF/p52-interacting protein ASF/SF2, was not significantly altered, indicating that deregulation of global RNA splicing was not a driving factor in the pathology of the VSD. Tumor growth factor (Tgf β-signaling, which plays a key role in cardiac morphogenesis during development, was the only pathway significantly deregulated by the double knockout as compared to control and Psip1 knockout samples. We accordingly speculate that deregulated Tgf-β signaling was a contributing factor to the VSD and prenatal lethality

  9. Non-lethal Clostridium sordellii bacteraemia in an immunocompromised patient with pleomorphic sarcoma.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bonnecaze, Alex K; Stephens, Sarah Ellen Elza; Miller, Peter John

    2016-01-01

    Clostridium sordellii is a spore-forming anaerobic Gram-positive rod that has rarely been reported to cause disease in humans. Resultant mortality from infection is estimated at nearly 70% and is most often correlated with gynaecological procedures, intravenous drug abuse or trauma. C. sordellii infection often presents similarly to toxic shock syndrome (TSS); notable features of infection include refractory hypotension, haemoconcentration and marked leucocytosis. Although clinically similar to TSS, a notable difference is C. sordellii infections rarely involve fever. The organism's major toxins include haemorrhagic (TcsH) and lethal factor (TcsL), which function to disrupt cytoskeletal integrity. Current literature suggests treating C. sordelli infection with a broad-spectrum penicillin, metronidazole and clindamycin. We present a case of C. sordellii bacteraemia and septic shock in an immunocompromised patient who was recently diagnosed with pleomorphic gluteal sarcoma. Despite presenting in critical condition, the patient improved after aggressive hemodynamic resuscitation, source control and intravenous antibiotic therapy. PMID:27489063

  10. Reduction of radio-contamination of vines by the method of 'non-lethal defoliation'

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    This study is included in the European Commission Programme RESSAC (Rehabilitation of Soils and Surfaces after a nuclear Accident). Its objective is to investigate the possibility of using 'non-lethal defoliation' as a countermeasure to mitigate the foliar uptake of radionuclides by plant leaves. We experimented on vines in productive agricultural fields in Spata - Attica, Greece. Interception factors and translocation of radionuclides studies were performed by using 134Cs as marker. The deposition of 134Cs was dry. Two pesticides, Harvade 60% FL and Basta 20 S.L., were used as defoliants. Our data showed that the recommended commercial doses of these chemicals resulted in defoliating up to 80% of the plants. We observed a reduction of radioactivity translocation to grapes by half, related to the defoliating degree. The efficacy of Harvade seemed higher than that of Basta. (authors)

  11. Lethal and sub-lethal effects of elevated CO2 concentrations on marine benthic invertebrates and fish.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Changkeun; Hong, Seongjin; Kwon, Bong-Oh; Lee, Jung-Ho; Ryu, Jongseong; Park, Young-Gyu; Kang, Seong-Gil; Khim, Jong Seong

    2016-08-01

    Concern about leakage of carbon dioxide (CO2) from deep-sea storage in geological reservoirs is increasing because of its possible adverse effects on marine organisms locally or at nearby coastal areas both in sediment and water column. In the present study, we examined how elevated CO2 affects various intertidal epibenthic (benthic copepod), intertidal endobenthic (Manila clam and Venus clam), sub-tidal benthic (brittle starfish), and free-living (marine medaka) organisms in areas expected to be impacted by leakage. Acute lethal and sub-lethal effects were detected in the adult stage of all test organisms exposed to varying concentrations of CO2, due to the associated decline in pH (8.3 to 5.2) during 96-h exposure. However, intertidal organisms (such as benthic copepods and clams) showed remarkable resistance to elevated CO2, with the Venus clam being the most tolerant (LpH50 = 5.45). Sub-tidal species (such as brittle starfish [LpH50 = 6.16] and marine medaka [LpH50 = 5.91]) were more sensitive to elevated CO2 compared to intertidal species, possibly because they have fewer defensive capabilities. Of note, the exposure duration might regulate the degree of acute sub-lethal effects, as evidenced by the Venus clam, which showed a time-dependent effect to elevated CO2. Finally, copper was chosen as a model toxic element to find out the synergistic or antagonistic effects between ocean acidification and metal pollution. Combination of CO2 and Cu exposure enhances the adverse effects to organisms, generally supporting a synergistic effect scenario. Overall, the significant variation in the degree to which CO2 adversely affected organisms (viz., working range and strength) was clearly observed, supporting the general concept of species-dependent effects of elevated CO2. PMID:27074931

  12. Lethal and sub-lethal effects on the Asian common toad Duttaphrynus melanostictus from exposure to hexavalent chromium.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fernando, Vindhya A K; Weerasena, Jagathpriya; Lakraj, G Pemantha; Perera, Inoka C; Dangalle, Chandima D; Handunnetti, Shiroma; Premawansa, Sunil; Wijesinghe, Mayuri R

    2016-08-01

    Chromium discharged in industrial effluents frequently occurs as an environmental pollutant, but the lethal and sub-lethal effects the heavy metal might cause in animals exposed to it have been insufficiently investigated. Selecting the amphibian Duttaphrynus melanostictus, we carried out laboratory tests to investigate the effects of short and long term exposure to hexavalent chromium (Cr(VI)) in both tadpoles and adult toads. The concentrations used were 0.002, 0.02, 0.2, 1.0 and 2.0mg/L, the first three corresponding to field levels. In vitro exposures were also carried out using toad erythrocytes and Cr(VI) concentrations of 0.0015, 0.003, 0.015, 0.03, 0.15mg/L. Mortality, growth retardation, developmental delays and structural aberrations were noted in the metal-treated tadpoles, with increasing incidence corresponding to increase in Cr(VI) level and duration of exposure. Many of the sub-lethal effects were evident with long term exposure to environmentally relevant levels of the toxicant. Changes in selected blood parameters and erythrocyte morphometry were also detected in Cr(VI) exposed toads, indicating anaemic and leucopenic conditions. In the genotoxicity study, DNA damage indicated by comet assay and increased micronuclei frequency, occurred at the low Cr(VI) concentrations tested. The multiple deleterious effects of exposure to chromium signal the need for monitoring and controlling the discharge of chromium to the environment. The dose-dependency and genotoxic effects observed in this widely distributed Asian toad indicates its suitability for monitoring heavy metal pollution in aquatic systems. PMID:27262939

  13. Characterization of the N-Acetyl-[alpha]-d-glucosaminyl l-Malate Synthase and Deacetylase Functions for Bacillithiol Biosynthesis in Bacillus anthracis

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Parsonage, Derek; Newton, Gerald L.; Holder, Robert C.; Wallace, Bret D.; Paige, Carleitta; Hamilton, Chris J.; Dos Santos, Patricia C.; Redinbo, Matthew R.; Reid, Sean D.; Claiborne, Al (Wake Forest); (UNC); (East Anglia); (UCSD)

    2012-02-21

    Bacillithiol (Cys-GlcN-malate, BSH) has recently been identified as a novel low-molecular weight thiol in Bacillus anthracis, Staphylococcus aureus, and several other Gram-positive bacteria lacking glutathione and mycothiol. We have now characterized the first two enzymes for the BSH biosynthetic pathway in B. anthracis, which combine to produce {alpha}-D-glucosaminyl L-malate (GlcN-malate) from UDP-GlcNAc and L-malate. The structure of the GlcNAc-malate intermediate has been determined, as have the kinetic parameters for the BaBshA glycosyltransferase ({yields}GlcNAc-malate) and the BaBshB deacetylase ({yields}GlcN-malate). BSH is one of only two natural products reported to contain a malyl glycoside, and the crystal structure of the BaBshA-UDP-malate ternary complex, determined in this work at 3.3 {angstrom} resolution, identifies several active-site interactions important for the specific recognition of L-malate, but not other {alpha}-hydroxy acids, as the acceptor substrate. In sharp contrast to the structures reported for the GlcNAc-1-D-myo-inositol-3-phosphate synthase (MshA) apo and ternary complex forms, there is no major conformational change observed in the structures of the corresponding BaBshA forms. A mutant strain of B. anthracis deficient in the BshA glycosyltransferase fails to produce BSH, as predicted. This B. anthracis bshA locus (BA1558) has been identified in a transposon-site hybridization study as required for growth, sporulation, or germination [Day, W. A., Jr., Rasmussen, S. L., Carpenter, B. M., Peterson, S. N., and Friedlander, A. M. (2007) J. Bacteriol. 189, 3296-3301], suggesting that the biosynthesis of BSH could represent a target for the development of novel antimicrobials with broad-spectrum activity against Gram-positive pathogens like B. anthracis. The metabolites that function in thiol redox buffering and homeostasis in Bacillus are not well understood, and we present a composite picture based on this and other recent work.

  14. Experimental evaluation of the relationship between lethal or non-lethal virulence and transmission success in malaria parasite infections

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nithiuthai S

    2004-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Evolutionary theory suggests that the selection pressure on parasites to maximize their transmission determines their optimal host exploitation strategies and thus their virulence. Establishing the adaptive basis to parasite life history traits has important consequences for predicting parasite responses to public health interventions. In this study we examine the extent to which malaria parasites conform to the predicted adaptive trade-off between transmission and virulence, as defined by mortality. The majority of natural infections, however, result in sub-lethal virulent effects (e.g. anaemia and are often composed of many strains. Both sub-lethal effects and pathogen population structure have been theoretically shown to have important consequences for virulence evolution. Thus, we additionally examine the relationship between anaemia and transmission in single and mixed clone infections. Results Whereas there was a trade-off between transmission success and virulence as defined by host mortality, contradictory clone-specific patterns occurred when defining virulence by anaemia. A negative relationship between anaemia and transmission success was found for one of the parasite clones, whereas there was no relationship for the other. Notably the two parasite clones also differed in a transmission phenotype (gametocyte sex ratio that has previously been shown to respond adaptively to a changing blood environment. In addition, as predicted by evolutionary theory, mixed infections resulted in increased anaemia. The increased anaemia was, however, not correlated with any discernable parasite trait (e.g. parasite density or with increased transmission. Conclusions We found some evidence supporting the hypothesis that there is an adaptive basis correlating virulence (as defined by host mortality and transmission success in malaria parasites. This confirms the validity of applying evolutionary virulence theory to biomedical

  15. Less-lethal munitions as extended-range impact weapons

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hubbs, Ken

    1997-01-01

    With the proliferation of 'suicide by cop' incidents, the concept of less lethal (LL) impact munitions has definitely caught on. There is much to be said for sterile laboratory testing and wound ballistic studies, but having 'real world' operational data is invaluable. Two years ago, a data base was set up to collect this information. The data base continues to grow with incidents from a cross the country and others pursued internationally. Indications are that LL munitions deliver a similar amount of force as conventional police impact weapons i.e., police batons, PR-24's, nunchakus, etc. One advantage over conventional impact weapons, is that LL munitions can be used at much greater distances from a suspect or crown of rioters. This gave rise to the term: extended range impact weapons. Having the ability to examine numerous cases in which these LL munitions have been successfully used for the resolution of critical incidents, is beneficial in evaluating the application and defending the usage of these force options. This paper examines 187 less lethal shootings and discusses such things as: the distance the munitions were fired, the types of injuries sustained by the targeted suspect, the body area of impact, what, if any weapons the suspect was armed with, and the type of incident requiring police response.

  16. Novel neutralizing monoclonal antibodies protect rodents against lethal filovirus challenges

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Caleb D. Marceau

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Filoviruses are the causative agents of lethal hemorrhagic fever in human and non-human primates (NHP. The family of Filoviridae is composed of three genera, Ebolavirus, Marburgvirus and Cuevavirus. There are currently no approved vaccines or antiviral therapeutics for the treatment of filovirus infections in humans. Passive transfer of neutralizing antibodies targeting the Ebola virus (EBOV glycoprotein (GP has proven effective in protecting mice, guinea pigs and NHP from lethal challenges with EBOV. In this study, we generated two neutralizing monoclonal antibodies (MAbs, termed S9 and M4 that recognize the GP of EBOV or multiple strains of Marburg virus (MARV, respectively. We characterized the putative binding site of S9 as a linear epitope on the glycan cap of the GP1 subunit of the EBOV-GP. The M4 antibody recognizes an unknown conformational epitope on MARV-GP. Additionally, we demonstrated the post-exposure protection potential of these antibodies in both the mouse and guinea pig models of filovirus infection. These data indicate that MAbs S9 and M4 would be good candidates for inclusion in an antibody cocktail for the treatment of filovirus infections.

  17. Injury risk assessment of non-lethal projectile head impacts.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oukara, Amar; Nsiampa, Nestor; Robbe, Cyril; Papy, Alexandre

    2014-01-01

    Kinetic energy non-lethal projectiles are used to impart sufficient effect onto a person in order to deter uncivil or hazardous behavior with a low probability of permanent injury. Since their first use, real cases indicate that the injuries inflicted by such projectiles may be irreversible and sometimes lead to death, especially for the head impacts. Given the high velocities and the low masses involved in such impacts, the assessment approaches proposed in automotive crash tests and sports may not be appropriate. Therefore, there is a need of a specific approach to assess the lethality of these projectiles. In this framework, some recent research data referred in this article as "force wall approach" suggest the use of three lesional thresholds (unconsciousness, meningeal damages and bone damages) that depend on the intracranial pressure. Three corresponding critical impact forces are determined for a reference projectile. Based on the principle that equal rigid wall maximal impact forces will produce equal damage on the head, these limits can be determined for any other projectile. In order to validate the consistence of this innovative method, it is necessary to compare the results with other existing assessment methods. This paper proposes a comparison between the "force wall approach" and two different head models. The first one is a numerical model (Strasbourg University Finite Element Head Model-SUFEHM) from Strasbourg University; the second one is a mechanical surrogate (Ballistics Load Sensing Headform-BLSH) from Biokinetics. PMID:25400712

  18. Lethal and sub-lethal effects of five pesticides used in rice farming on the earthworm Eisenia fetida.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rico, Andreu; Sabater, Consuelo; Castillo, María-Ángeles

    2016-05-01

    The toxicity of five pesticides typically used in rice farming (trichlorfon, dimethoate, carbendazim, tebuconazole and prochloraz) was evaluated on different lethal and sub-lethal endpoints of the earthworm Eisenia fetida. The evaluated endpoints included: avoidance behaviour after an exposure period of 2 days; and mortality, weight loss, enzymatic activities (cholinesterase, lactate dehydrogenase and alkaline phosphatase) and histopathological effects after an exposure period of 14 days. Carbendazim was found to be highly toxic to E. fetida (LC50=2mg/kg d.w.), significantly reducing earthworm weight and showing an avoidance response at soil concentrations that are close to those predicted in rice-fields and in surrounding ecosystems. The insecticide dimethoate showed a moderate acute toxicity (LC50=28mg/kg d.w.), whereas the rest of tested pesticides showed low toxicity potential (LC50 values above 100mg/kg d.w.). For these pesticides, however, weight loss was identified as a sensitive endpoint, with NOEC values approximately 2 times or lower than the calculated LC10 values. The investigated effects on the enzymatic activities of E. fetida and the observed histopathological alterations (longitudinal and circular muscle lesions, edematous tissues, endothelial degeneration and necrosis) proved to be sensitive biomarkers to monitor pesticide contamination and are proposed as alternative measures to evaluate pesticide risks on agro-ecosystems. PMID:26874341

  19. What Are Reasons for the Large Gender Differences in the Lethality of Suicidal Acts? An Epidemiological Analysis in Four European Countries.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Roland Mergl

    Full Text Available In Europe, men have lower rates of attempted suicide compared to women and at the same time a higher rate of completed suicides, indicating major gender differences in lethality of suicidal behaviour. The aim of this study was to analyse the extent to which these gender differences in lethality can be explained by factors such as choice of more lethal methods or lethality differences within the same suicide method or age. In addition, we explored gender differences in the intentionality of suicide attempts.Methods. Design: Epidemiological study using a combination of self-report and official data. Setting: Mental health care services in four European countries: Germany, Hungary, Ireland, and Portugal. Data basis: Completed suicides derived from official statistics for each country (767 acts, 74.4% male and assessed suicide attempts excluding habitual intentional self-harm (8,175 acts, 43.2% male. Main Outcome Measures and Data Analysis. We collected data on suicidal acts in eight regions of four European countries participating in the EU-funded "OSPI-Europe"-project (www.ospi-europe.com. We calculated method-specific lethality using the number of completed suicides per method * 100 / (number of completed suicides per method + number of attempted suicides per method. We tested gender differences in the distribution of suicidal acts for significance by using the χ2-test for two-by-two tables. We assessed the effect sizes with phi coefficients (φ. We identified predictors of lethality with a binary logistic regression analysis. Poisson regression analysis examined the contribution of choice of methods and method-specific lethality to gender differences in the lethality of suicidal acts.Suicidal acts (fatal and non-fatal were 3.4 times more lethal in men than in women (lethality 13.91% (regarding 4106 suicidal acts versus 4.05% (regarding 4836 suicidal acts, the difference being significant for the methods hanging, jumping, moving objects, sharp

  20. The role of sub-lethal weapons in human rights abuse.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wright, S

    2001-01-01

    This article is based on two recent reports contracted by the European Parliament (EP), which assessed sub-lethal weapons as flexible tools of political control. It analyses the role and function of existing weapons systems in human rights abuses using examples from Indonesia, Israel, Kenya, Northern Ireland and Turkey. These weapons are designed to 'appear' rather than 'be' safe and, since they augment rather than replace lethal technologies, their use can distort conflicts and actually bridge the firewall between use of less-lethal and lethal technologies. PMID:11578040