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Sample records for encoding potential virulence

  1. Real-time PCR expression profiling of genes encoding potential virulence factors in Candida albicans biofilms: identification of model-dependent and -independent gene expression

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    Řičicová Markéta

    2010-04-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Candida albicans infections are often associated with biofilm formation. Previous work demonstrated that the expression of HWP1 (hyphal wall protein and of genes belonging to the ALS (agglutinin-like sequence, SAP (secreted aspartyl protease, PLB (phospholipase B and LIP (lipase gene families is associated with biofilm growth on mucosal surfaces. We investigated using real-time PCR whether genes encoding potential virulence factors are also highly expressed in biofilms associated with abiotic surfaces. For this, C. albicans biofilms were grown on silicone in microtiter plates (MTP or in the Centres for Disease Control (CDC reactor, on polyurethane in an in vivo subcutaneous catheter rat (SCR model, and on mucosal surfaces in the reconstituted human epithelium (RHE model. Results HWP1 and genes belonging to the ALS, SAP, PLB and LIP gene families were constitutively expressed in C. albicans biofilms. ALS1-5 were upregulated in all model systems, while ALS9 was mostly downregulated. ALS6 and HWP1 were overexpressed in all models except in the RHE and MTP, respectively. The expression levels of SAP1 were more pronounced in both in vitro models, while those of SAP2, SAP4 and SAP6 were higher in the in vivo model. Furthermore, SAP5 was highly upregulated in the in vivo and RHE models. For SAP9 and SAP10 similar gene expression levels were observed in all model systems. PLB genes were not considerably upregulated in biofilms, while LIP1-3, LIP5-7 and LIP9-10 were highly overexpressed in both in vitro models. Furthermore, an elevated lipase activity was detected in supernatans of biofilms grown in the MTP and RHE model. Conclusions Our findings show that HWP1 and most of the genes belonging to the ALS, SAP and LIP gene families are upregulated in C. albicans biofilms. Comparison of the fold expression between the various model systems revealed similar expression levels for some genes, while for others model-dependent expression

  2. Virulence potential of Staphylococcus aureus isolates from Buruli ulcer patients.

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    Amissah, Nana Ama; Chlebowicz, Monika A; Ablordey, Anthony; Tetteh, Caitlin S; Prah, Isaac; van der Werf, Tjip S; Friedrich, Alex W; van Dijl, Jan Maarten; Stienstra, Ymkje; Rossen, John W

    2017-06-01

    Buruli ulcer (BU) is a necrotizing infection of the skin and subcutaneous tissue caused by Mycobacterium ulcerans. BU wounds may also be colonized with other microorganisms including Staphylococcus aureus. This study aimed to characterize the virulence factors of S. aureus isolated from BU patients. Previously sequenced genomes of 21 S. aureus isolates from BU patients were screened for the presence of virulence genes. The results show that all S. aureus isolates harbored on their core genomes genes for known virulence factors like α-hemolysin, and the α- and β-phenol soluble modulins. Besides the core genome virulence genes, mobile genetic elements (MGEs), i.e. prophages, genomic islands, pathogenicity islands and a Staphylococcal cassette chromosome (SCC) were found to carry different combinations of virulence factors, among them genes that are known to encode factors that promote immune evasion, superantigens and Panton-Valentine Leucocidin. The present observations imply that the S. aureus isolates from BU patients harbor a diverse repertoire of virulence genes that may enhance bacterial survival and persistence in the wound environment and potentially contribute to delayed wound healing. Copyright © 2017 The Authors. Published by Elsevier GmbH.. All rights reserved.

  3. Gene encoding virulence markers among Escherichia coli isolates ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    River water sources and diarrhoeic stools of residents in the Venda Region, Limpopo Province of South Africa were analysed for the prevalence of Escherichia coli (E. coli) and the presence of virulence genes among the isolates. A control group of 100 nondiarrhoeic stool samples was included. Escherichia coli was ...

  4. Exploring potential virulence regulators in Paracoccidioides brasiliensis isolates of varying virulence through quantitative proteomics.

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    Castilho, Daniele G; Chaves, Alison F A; Xander, Patricia; Zelanis, André; Kitano, Eduardo S; Serrano, Solange M T; Tashima, Alexandre K; Batista, Wagner L

    2014-10-03

    Few virulence factors have been identified for Paracoccidioides brasiliensis, the agent of paracoccidioidomycosis. In this study, we quantitatively evaluated the protein composition of P. brasiliensis in the yeast phase using minimal and rich media to obtain a better understanding of its virulence and to gain new insights into pathogen adaptation strategies. This analysis was performed on two isolates of the Pb18 strain showing distinct infection profiles in B10.A mice. Using liquid chromatography/tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS) analysis, we identified and quantified 316 proteins in minimal medium, 29 of which were overexpressed in virulent Pb18. In rich medium, 29 out of 295 proteins were overexpressed in the virulent fungus. Three proteins were found to be up-regulated in both media, suggesting the potential roles of these proteins in virulence regulation in P. brasiliensis. Moreover, genes up-regulated in virulent Pb18 showed an increase in its expression after the recovery of virulence of attenuated Pb18. Proteins up-regulated in both isolates were grouped according to their functional categories. Virulent Pb18 undergoes metabolic reorganization and increased expression of proteins involved in fermentative respiration. This approach allowed us to identify potential virulence regulators and provided a foundation for achieving a molecular understanding of how Paracoccidioides modulates the host-pathogen interaction to its advantage.

  5. Unfolded Protein Response (UPR Regulator Cib1 Controls Expression of Genes Encoding Secreted Virulence Factors in Ustilago maydis.

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    Martin Hampel

    Full Text Available The unfolded protein response (UPR, a conserved eukaryotic signaling pathway to ensure protein homeostasis in the endoplasmic reticulum (ER, coordinates biotrophic development in the corn smut fungus Ustilago maydis. Exact timing of UPR activation is required for virulence and presumably connected to the elevated expression of secreted effector proteins during infection of the host plant Zea mays. In the baker's yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae, expression of UPR target genes is induced upon binding of the central regulator Hac1 to unfolded protein response elements (UPREs in their promoters. While a role of the UPR in effector secretion has been described previously, we investigated a potential UPR-dependent regulation of genes encoding secreted effector proteins. In silico prediction of UPREs in promoter regions identified the previously characterized effector genes pit2 and tin1-1, as bona fide UPR target genes. Furthermore, direct binding of the Hac1-homolog Cib1 to the UPRE containing promoter fragments of both genes was confirmed by quantitative chromatin immunoprecipitation (qChIP analysis. Targeted deletion of the UPRE abolished Cib1-dependent expression of pit2 and significantly affected virulence. Furthermore, ER stress strongly increased Pit2 expression and secretion. This study expands the role of the UPR as a signal hub in fungal virulence and illustrates, how biotrophic fungi can coordinate cellular physiology, development and regulation of secreted virulence factors.

  6. Potential drivers of virulence evolution in aquaculture

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    Kennedy, David A.; Kurath, Gael; Brito, Ilana L.; Purcell, Maureen K.; Read, Andrew F.; Winton, James R.; Wargo, Andrew R.

    2016-01-01

    Infectious diseases are economically detrimental to aquaculture, and with continued expansion and intensification of aquaculture, the importance of managing infectious diseases will likely increase in the future. Here, we use evolution of virulence theory, along with examples, to identify aquaculture practices that might lead to the evolution of increased pathogen virulence. We identify eight practices common in aquaculture that theory predicts may favor evolution toward higher pathogen virulence. Four are related to intensive aquaculture operations, and four others are related specifically to infectious disease control. Our intention is to make aquaculture managers aware of these risks, such that with increased vigilance, they might be able to detect and prevent the emergence and spread of increasingly troublesome pathogen strains in the future.

  7. Virulence properties of methicillin-susceptible Staphylococcus aureus food isolates encoding Panton-Valentine Leukocidin gene.

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    Sudagidan, Mert; Aydin, Ali

    2010-04-15

    In this study, three Panton-Valentine Leukocidin gene carrying methicillin-susceptible Staphylococcus aureus (MSSA) strains (M1-AAG42B, PY30C-b and YF1B-b) were isolated from different food samples in Kesan-Edirne, Turkey. These strains were characterized on the basis of MLST type, spa type, virulence factor gene contents, antibiotic susceptibilities against 21 antibiotics and biofilm formation. The genetic relatedness of the strains was determined by PFGE. In addition, the complete gene sequences of lukS-PV and lukF-PV were also investigated. All strains were found to be susceptible to tested antibiotics and they were mecA negative. Three strains showed the same PFGE band pattern, ST152 clonal type and t355 spa type. In the detection of virulence factor genes, sea, seb, sec, sed, see, seg, seh, sei, sej, sek, sel, sem, sen, seo, sep, seq, seu, eta, etb, set1, geh and tst genes were not detected. All strains showed the positive results for alpha- and beta-haemolysin genes (hla and hlb), protease encoding genes (sspA, sspB and aur), lukE and lukD leukocidin genes (lukED). The strains were found to be non-biofilm formers. By this study, the virulence properties of the strains were described and this is one of the first reports regarding PVL-positive MSSA strains from food. (c) 2010 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  8. Staphylococcus aureus nasal carriage in Ukraine: antibacterial resistance and virulence factor encoding genes.

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    Netsvyetayeva, Irina; Fraczek, Mariusz; Piskorska, Katarzyna; Golas, Marlena; Sikora, Magdalena; Mlynarczyk, Andrzej; Swoboda-Kopec, Ewa; Marusza, Wojciech; Palmieri, Beniamino; Iannitti, Tommaso

    2014-03-05

    The number of studies regarding the incidence of multidrug resistant strains and distribution of genes encoding virulence factors, which have colonized the post-Soviet states, is considerably limited. The aim of the study was (1) to assess the Staphylococcus (S.) aureus nasal carriage rate, including Methicillin Resistant S. aureus (MRSA) strains in adult Ukrainian population, (2) to determine antibiotic resistant pattern and (3) the occurrence of Panton Valentine Leukocidine (PVL)-, Fibronectin-Binding Protein A (FnBPA)- and Exfoliative Toxin (ET)-encoding genes. Nasal samples for S. aureus culture were obtained from 245 adults. The susceptibility pattern for several classes of antibiotics was determined by disk diffusion method according to the European Committee on Antimicrobial Susceptibility Testing (EUCAST) guidelines. The virulence factor encoding genes, mecA, lukS-lukF, eta, etb, etd, fnbA, were detected by Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR). The S. aureus nasal carriage rate was 40%. The prevalence of nasal MRSA carriage in adults was 3.7%. LukS-lukF genes were detected in over 58% of the strains. ET-encoding genes were detected in over 39% of the strains and the most prevalent was etd. The fnbA gene was detected in over 59% of the strains. All MRSA isolates tested were positive for the mecA gene. LukS-lukF genes and the etd gene were commonly co-present in MRSA, while lukS-lukF genes and the fnbA gene were commonly co-present in Methicillin Sensitive S. aureus (MSSA) isolates. No significant difference was detected between the occurrence of lukS-lukF genes (P > 0.05) and the etd gene (P > 0.05) when comparing MRSA and MSSA. The occurrence of the fnbA gene was significantly more frequent in MSSA strains (P aureus is a common cause of infection. The prevalence of S. aureus nasal carriage in our cohort of patients from Ukraine was 40.4%. We found that 9.1% of the strains were classified as MRSA and all MRSA isolates tested positive for the mecA gene

  9. The frequency of genes encoding three putative group B streptococcal virulence factors among invasive and colonizing isolates

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    Borchardt Stephanie M

    2006-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Group B Streptococcus (GBS causes severe infections in very young infants and invasive disease in pregnant women and adults with underlying medical conditions. GBS pathogenicity varies between and within serotypes, with considerable variation in genetic content between strains. Three proteins, Rib encoded by rib, and alpha and beta C proteins encoded by bca and bac, respectively, have been suggested as potential vaccine candidates for GBS. It is not known, however, whether these genes occur more frequently in invasive versus colonizing GBS strains. Methods We screened 162 invasive and 338 colonizing GBS strains from different collections using dot blot hybridization to assess the frequency of bca, bac and rib. All strains were defined by serotyping for capsular type, and frequency differences were tested using the Chi square test. Results Genes encoding the beta C protein (bac and Rib (rib occurred at similar frequencies among invasive and colonizing isolates, bac (20% vs. 23%, and rib (28% vs. 20%, while the alpha (bca C protein was more frequently found in colonizing strains (46% vs, invasive (29%. Invasive strains were associated with specific serotype/gene combinations. Conclusion Novel virulence factors must be identified to better understand GBS disease.

  10. Identification of novel substrates of Shigella T3SA through analysis of its virulence plasmid-encoded secretome

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    Pinaud, Laurie; Ferrari, Mariana L.; Friedman, Robin; Jehmlich, Nico; von Bergen, Martin; Phalipon, Armelle; Sansonetti, Philippe J.

    2017-01-01

    Many human Gram-negative bacterial pathogens express a Type Three Secretion Apparatus (T3SA), including among the most notorious Shigella spp., Salmonella enterica, Yersinia enterocolitica and enteropathogenic Escherichia coli (EPEC). These bacteria express on their surface multiple copies of the T3SA that mediate the delivery into host cells of specific protein substrates critical to pathogenesis. Shigella spp. are Gram-negative bacterial pathogens responsible for human bacillary dysentery. The effector function of several Shigella T3SA substrates has largely been studied but their potential cellular targets are far from having been comprehensively delineated. In addition, it is likely that some T3SA substrates have escaped scrutiny as yet. Indeed, sequencing of the virulence plasmid of Shigella flexneri has revealed numerous open reading frames with unknown functions that could encode additional T3SA substrates. Taking advantage of label-free mass spectrometry detection of proteins secreted by a constitutively secreting strain of S. flexneri, we identified five novel substrates of the T3SA. We further confirmed their secretion through the T3SA and translocation into host cells using β-lactamase assays. The coding sequences of two of these novel T3SA substrates (Orf13 and Orf131a) have a guanine-cytosine content comparable to those of T3SA components and effectors. The three other T3SA substrates identified (Orf48, Orf86 and Orf176) have significant homology with antitoxin moieties of type II Toxin-Antitoxin systems usually implicated in the maintenance of low copy plasmids. While Orf13 and Orf131a might constitute new virulence effectors contributing to S. flexneri pathogenicity, potential roles for the translocation into host cells of antitoxins or antitoxin-like proteins during Shigella infection are discussed. PMID:29073283

  11. Identification of novel substrates of Shigella T3SA through analysis of its virulence plasmid-encoded secretome.

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    Laurie Pinaud

    Full Text Available Many human Gram-negative bacterial pathogens express a Type Three Secretion Apparatus (T3SA, including among the most notorious Shigella spp., Salmonella enterica, Yersinia enterocolitica and enteropathogenic Escherichia coli (EPEC. These bacteria express on their surface multiple copies of the T3SA that mediate the delivery into host cells of specific protein substrates critical to pathogenesis. Shigella spp. are Gram-negative bacterial pathogens responsible for human bacillary dysentery. The effector function of several Shigella T3SA substrates has largely been studied but their potential cellular targets are far from having been comprehensively delineated. In addition, it is likely that some T3SA substrates have escaped scrutiny as yet. Indeed, sequencing of the virulence plasmid of Shigella flexneri has revealed numerous open reading frames with unknown functions that could encode additional T3SA substrates. Taking advantage of label-free mass spectrometry detection of proteins secreted by a constitutively secreting strain of S. flexneri, we identified five novel substrates of the T3SA. We further confirmed their secretion through the T3SA and translocation into host cells using β-lactamase assays. The coding sequences of two of these novel T3SA substrates (Orf13 and Orf131a have a guanine-cytosine content comparable to those of T3SA components and effectors. The three other T3SA substrates identified (Orf48, Orf86 and Orf176 have significant homology with antitoxin moieties of type II Toxin-Antitoxin systems usually implicated in the maintenance of low copy plasmids. While Orf13 and Orf131a might constitute new virulence effectors contributing to S. flexneri pathogenicity, potential roles for the translocation into host cells of antitoxins or antitoxin-like proteins during Shigella infection are discussed.

  12. A novel pAA virulence plasmid encoding toxins and two distinct variants of the fimbriae of enteroaggregative Escherichia coli

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jønsson, Rie; Struve, Carsten; Boll, Erik J.

    2017-01-01

    phylogenetically distinct, strains harboring the major pilin subunits from both AAF/III and AAF/V. Whole-genome and plasmid sequencing revealed that in these six strains the agg3A and agg5A genes were located on a novel pAA plasmid variant. Moreover, the plasmid also encoded several other virulence genes including...... some not previously found on pAA plasmids. Thus, this plasmid endows the host strains with a remarkably high number of EAEC associated virulence genes hereby likely promoting strain pathogenicity....

  13. A study of Staphylococcus aureusnasal carriage, antibacterial resistance and virulence factor encoding genes in a tertiary care hospital, Kayseri, Turkey.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oguzkaya-Artan, M; Artan, C; Baykan, Z; Sakalar, C; Turan, A; Aksu, H

    2015-01-01

    This study was to determine the virulence encoding genes, and the antibiotic resistance patterns of the Staphylococcus aureus isolates, which were isolated from the nasal samples of chest clinic patients. The nasal samples of the in-patients (431) and out-patients (1857) in Kayseri Training and Research Hospital's Chest Clinic, Kayseri, Turkey, were cultured on CHROMagar (Biolife, Italiana) S. aureus, and subcultured on sheep blood agar for the isolation of S. aureus. Disc diffusion method was used for antimicrobial susceptibility testing. The occurrence of the staphylococcal virulence encoding genes (enterotoksins [sea, seb, sec, see, seg, seh, sei, sej], fibronectin-binding proteins A, B [fnbA, fnbB], toxic shock syndrome toxin-1 [tst]) were detected by polymerase chain reaction. Forty-five of the 55 (81.8%) S. aureus isolates from inpatients, and 319 (90.6%) isolates from tested 352 out-patient's isolates were suspected to all the antibiotics tested. methicillin-resistant S. aureus (MRSA) was detected in 1.2% of S. aureus isolates. Rifampin, trimethoprim-sulfamethoxazole, clindamycin, erythromycin, gentamicin resistance rates were 1.2%, 1.7%, 2.0%, 8.8%, and 1.2%, respectively. The isolates were susceptible to teicoplanin and vancomycin. The genes most frequently found were tst (92.7%), seg (85.8%), sea (83.6%), fnbA (70.9%). There was no statistical significance detected between MRSA and mecA-negative S. aureus isolates in encoding genes distribution (P > 0.05). Our results show that virulence factor encoding genes were prevalent in patients with S. aureus carriage, whereas antibiotic resistance was low. These virulence determinants may increase the risk for subsequent invasive infections in carriers.

  14. How to kill the honey bee larva: genomic potential and virulence mechanisms of Paenibacillus larvae.

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    Marvin Djukic

    Full Text Available Paenibacillus larvae, a Gram positive bacterial pathogen, causes American Foulbrood (AFB, which is the most serious infectious disease of honey bees. In order to investigate the genomic potential of P. larvae, two strains belonging to two different genotypes were sequenced and used for comparative genome analysis. The complete genome sequence of P. larvae strain DSM 25430 (genotype ERIC II consisted of 4,056,006 bp and harbored 3,928 predicted protein-encoding genes. The draft genome sequence of P. larvae strain DSM 25719 (genotype ERIC I comprised 4,579,589 bp and contained 4,868 protein-encoding genes. Both strains harbored a 9.7 kb plasmid and encoded a large number of virulence-associated proteins such as toxins and collagenases. In addition, genes encoding large multimodular enzymes producing nonribosomally peptides or polyketides were identified. In the genome of strain DSM 25719 seven toxin associated loci were identified and analyzed. Five of them encoded putatively functional toxins. The genome of strain DSM 25430 harbored several toxin loci that showed similarity to corresponding loci in the genome of strain DSM 25719, but were non-functional due to point mutations or disruption by transposases. Although both strains cause AFB, significant differences between the genomes were observed including genome size, number and composition of transposases, insertion elements, predicted phage regions, and strain-specific island-like regions. Transposases, integrases and recombinases are important drivers for genome plasticity. A total of 390 and 273 mobile elements were found in strain DSM 25430 and strain DSM 25719, respectively. Comparative genomics of both strains revealed acquisition of virulence factors by horizontal gene transfer and provided insights into evolution and pathogenicity.

  15. How to kill the honey bee larva: genomic potential and virulence mechanisms of Paenibacillus larvae.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Djukic, Marvin; Brzuszkiewicz, Elzbieta; Fünfhaus, Anne; Voss, Jörn; Gollnow, Kathleen; Poppinga, Lena; Liesegang, Heiko; Garcia-Gonzalez, Eva; Genersch, Elke; Daniel, Rolf

    2014-01-01

    Paenibacillus larvae, a Gram positive bacterial pathogen, causes American Foulbrood (AFB), which is the most serious infectious disease of honey bees. In order to investigate the genomic potential of P. larvae, two strains belonging to two different genotypes were sequenced and used for comparative genome analysis. The complete genome sequence of P. larvae strain DSM 25430 (genotype ERIC II) consisted of 4,056,006 bp and harbored 3,928 predicted protein-encoding genes. The draft genome sequence of P. larvae strain DSM 25719 (genotype ERIC I) comprised 4,579,589 bp and contained 4,868 protein-encoding genes. Both strains harbored a 9.7 kb plasmid and encoded a large number of virulence-associated proteins such as toxins and collagenases. In addition, genes encoding large multimodular enzymes producing nonribosomally peptides or polyketides were identified. In the genome of strain DSM 25719 seven toxin associated loci were identified and analyzed. Five of them encoded putatively functional toxins. The genome of strain DSM 25430 harbored several toxin loci that showed similarity to corresponding loci in the genome of strain DSM 25719, but were non-functional due to point mutations or disruption by transposases. Although both strains cause AFB, significant differences between the genomes were observed including genome size, number and composition of transposases, insertion elements, predicted phage regions, and strain-specific island-like regions. Transposases, integrases and recombinases are important drivers for genome plasticity. A total of 390 and 273 mobile elements were found in strain DSM 25430 and strain DSM 25719, respectively. Comparative genomics of both strains revealed acquisition of virulence factors by horizontal gene transfer and provided insights into evolution and pathogenicity.

  16. Potential virulence of Klebsiella sp. isolates from enteral diets

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    S.C.L. Pereira

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available We aimed to evaluate the potential virulence of Klebsiella isolates from enteral diets in hospitals, to support nosocomial infection control measures, especially among critical-care patients. Phenotypic determination of virulence factors, such as capsular expression on the external membrane, production of aerobactin siderophore, synthesis of capsular polysaccharide, hemolytic and phospholipase activity, and resistance to antibiotics, which are used therapeutically, were investigated in strains of Klebsiella pneumoniae and K. oxytoca. Modular industrialized enteral diets (30 samples as used in two public hospitals were analyzed, and Klebsiella isolates were obtained from six (20% of them. The hypermucoviscous phenotype was observed in one of the K. pneumoniae isolates (6.7%. Capsular serotypes K1 to K6 were present, namely K5 and K4. Under the conditions of this study, no aerobactin production, hemolytic activity or lecithinase activity was observed in the isolates. All isolates were resistant to amoxicillin and ampicillin and sensitive to cefetamet, imipenem, chloramphenicol, gentamicin and sulfamethoxazole-trimethoprim. Most K. pneumoniae isolates (6/7, 85.7% from hospital B presented with a higher frequency of resistance to the antibiotics tested in this study, and multiple resistance to at least four antibiotics (3/8; 37.5% compared with isolates from Hospital A. The variations observed in the antibiotic resistance profiles allowed us to classify the Klebsiella isolates as eight antibiotypes. No production of broad-spectrum β-lactamases was observed among the isolates. Our data favor the hypothesis that Klebsiella isolates from enteral diets are potential pathogens for nosocomial infections.

  17. The Riemerella anatipestifer AS87_01735 Gene Encodes Nicotinamidase PncA, an Important Virulence Factor.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Xiaolan; Liu, Beibei; Dou, Yafeng; Fan, Hongjie; Wang, Shaohui; Li, Tao; Ding, Chan; Yu, Shengqing

    2016-10-01

    Riemerella anatipestifer is a major bacterial pathogen that causes septicemic and exudative diseases in domestic ducks. In our previous study, we found that deletion of the AS87_01735 gene significantly decreased the bacterial virulence of R. anatipestifer strain Yb2 (mutant RA625). The AS87_01735 gene was predicted to encode a nicotinamidase (PncA), a key enzyme that catalyzes the conversion of nicotinamide to nicotinic acid, which is an important reaction in the NAD(+) salvage pathway. In this study, the AS87_01735 gene was expressed and identified as the PncA-encoding gene, using an enzymatic assay. Western blot analysis demonstrated that R. anatipestifer PncA was localized to the cytoplasm. The mutant strain RA625 (named Yb2ΔpncA in this study) showed a similar growth rate but decreased NAD(+) quantities in both the exponential and stationary phases in tryptic soy broth culture, compared with the wild-type strain Yb2. In addition, Yb2ΔpncA-infected ducks showed much lower bacterial loads in their blood, and no visible histological changes were observed in the heart, liver, and spleen. Furthermore, Yb2ΔpncA immunization of ducks conferred effective protection against challenge with the virulent wild-type strain Yb2. Our results suggest that the R. anatipestifer AS87_01735 gene encodes PncA, which is an important virulence factor, and that the Yb2ΔpncA mutant can be used as a novel live vaccine candidate. Riemerella anatipestifer is reported worldwide as a cause of septicemic and exudative diseases of domestic ducks. The pncA gene encodes a nicotinamidase (PncA), a key enzyme that catalyzes the conversion of nicotinamide to nicotinic acid, which is an important reaction in the NAD(+) salvage pathway. In this study, we identified and characterized the pncA-homologous gene AS87_01735 in R. anatipestifer strain Yb2. R. anatipestifer PncA is a cytoplasmic protein that possesses similar PncA activity, compared with other organisms. Generation of the pncA mutant Yb

  18. The host-encoded Heme Regulated Inhibitor (HRI facilitates virulence-associated activities of bacterial pathogens.

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    Niraj Shrestha

    Full Text Available Here we show that cells lacking the heme-regulated inhibitor (HRI are highly resistant to infection by bacterial pathogens. By examining the infection process in wild-type and HRI null cells, we found that HRI is required for pathogens to execute their virulence-associated cellular activities. Specifically, unlike wild-type cells, HRI null cells infected with the gram-negative bacterial pathogen Yersinia are essentially impervious to the cytoskeleton-damaging effects of the Yop virulence factors. This effect is due to reduced functioning of the Yersinia type 3 secretion (T3S system which injects virulence factors directly into the host cell cytosol. Reduced T3S activity is also observed in HRI null cells infected with the bacterial pathogen Chlamydia which results in a dramatic reduction in its intracellular proliferation. We go on to show that a HRI-mediated process plays a central role in the cellular infection cycle of the Gram-positive pathogen Listeria. For this pathogen, HRI is required for the post-invasion trafficking of the bacterium to the infected host cytosol. Thus by depriving Listeria of its intracellular niche, there is a highly reduced proliferation of Listeria in HRI null cells. We provide evidence that these infection-associated functions of HRI (an eIF2α kinase are independent of its activity as a regulator of protein synthesis. This is the first report of a host factor whose absence interferes with the function of T3S secretion and cytosolic access by pathogens and makes HRI an excellent target for inhibitors due to its broad virulence-associated activities.

  19. Virulence potential of Staphylococcus aureus isolates from Buruli ulcer patients

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Amissah, Nana Ama; Chlebowicz, Monika A.; Ablordey, Anthony; Tetteh, Caitlin S.; Prah, Isaac; van der Werf, Tjip S.; Friedrich, Alex W.; van Dijl, Jan Maarten; Stienstra, Ymkje; Rossen, John W.

    Buruli ulcer (BU) is a necrotizing infection of the skin and subcutaneous tissue caused by Mycobacterium ulcerans. BU wounds may also be colonized with other microorganisms including Staphylococcus aureus. This study aimed to characterize the virulence factors of S. aureus isolated from BU patients.

  20. Klebsiella pneumoniae asparagine tDNAs are integration hotspots for different genomic islands encoding microcin E492 production determinants and other putative virulence factors present in hypervirulent strains

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    Andrés Esteban Marcoleta

    2016-06-01

    identified a total of 47 asn-tDNA-associated GIs that were classified into 12 groups of homology differing in the encoded functionalities but sharing with GIE492 a conserved recombination module and potentially its mobility features. Most of these GIs encoded factors with proven or potential role in pathogenesis, constituting a major reservoir of virulence factors in this species.

  1. The Fusarium oxysporum gnt2, Encoding a Putative N-Acetylglucosamine Transferase, Is Involved in Cell Wall Architecture and Virulence

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    López-Fernández, Loida; Ruiz-Roldán, Carmen; Pareja-Jaime, Yolanda; Prieto, Alicia; Khraiwesh, Husam; Roncero, M. Isabel G.

    2013-01-01

    With the aim to decipher the molecular dialogue and cross talk between Fusarium oxysporum f.sp. lycopersci and its host during infection and to understand the molecular bases that govern fungal pathogenicity, we analysed genes presumably encoding N-acetylglucosaminyl transferases, involved in glycosylation of glycoproteins, glycolipids, proteoglycans or small molecule acceptors in other microorganisms. In silico analysis revealed the existence of seven putative N-glycosyl transferase encoding genes (named gnt) in F. oxysporum f.sp. lycopersici genome. gnt2 deletion mutants showed a dramatic reduction in virulence on both plant and animal hosts. Δgnt2 mutants had αalterations in cell wall properties related to terminal αor β-linked N-acetyl glucosamine. Mutant conidia and germlings also showed differences in structure and physicochemical surface properties. Conidial and hyphal aggregation differed between the mutant and wild type strains, in a pH independent manner. Transmission electron micrographs of germlings showed strong cell-to-cell adherence and the presence of an extracellular chemical matrix. Δgnt2 cell walls presented a significant reduction in N-linked oligosaccharides, suggesting the involvement of Gnt2 in N-glycosylation of cell wall proteins. Gnt2 was localized in Golgi-like sub-cellular compartments as determined by fluorescence microscopy of GFP::Gnt2 fusion protein after treatment with the antibiotic brefeldin A or by staining with fluorescent sphingolipid BODIPY-TR ceramide. Furthermore, density gradient ultracentrifugation allowed co-localization of GFP::Gnt2 fusion protein and Vps10p in subcellular fractions enriched in Golgi specific enzymatic activities. Our results suggest that N-acetylglucosaminyl transferases are key components for cell wall structure and influence interactions of F. oxysporum with both plant and animal hosts during pathogenicity. PMID:24416097

  2. The Fusarium oxysporum gnt2, encoding a putative N-acetylglucosamine transferase, is involved in cell wall architecture and virulence.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Loida López-Fernández

    Full Text Available With the aim to decipher the molecular dialogue and cross talk between Fusarium oxysporum f.sp. lycopersci and its host during infection and to understand the molecular bases that govern fungal pathogenicity, we analysed genes presumably encoding N-acetylglucosaminyl transferases, involved in glycosylation of glycoproteins, glycolipids, proteoglycans or small molecule acceptors in other microorganisms. In silico analysis revealed the existence of seven putative N-glycosyl transferase encoding genes (named gnt in F. oxysporum f.sp. lycopersici genome. gnt2 deletion mutants showed a dramatic reduction in virulence on both plant and animal hosts. Δgnt2 mutants had αalterations in cell wall properties related to terminal αor β-linked N-acetyl glucosamine. Mutant conidia and germlings also showed differences in structure and physicochemical surface properties. Conidial and hyphal aggregation differed between the mutant and wild type strains, in a pH independent manner. Transmission electron micrographs of germlings showed strong cell-to-cell adherence and the presence of an extracellular chemical matrix. Δgnt2 cell walls presented a significant reduction in N-linked oligosaccharides, suggesting the involvement of Gnt2 in N-glycosylation of cell wall proteins. Gnt2 was localized in Golgi-like sub-cellular compartments as determined by fluorescence microscopy of GFP::Gnt2 fusion protein after treatment with the antibiotic brefeldin A or by staining with fluorescent sphingolipid BODIPY-TR ceramide. Furthermore, density gradient ultracentrifugation allowed co-localization of GFP::Gnt2 fusion protein and Vps10p in subcellular fractions enriched in Golgi specific enzymatic activities. Our results suggest that N-acetylglucosaminyl transferases are key components for cell wall structure and influence interactions of F. oxysporum with both plant and animal hosts during pathogenicity.

  3. Prevalence of genes encoding extracellular virulence factors among meticillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus isolates from the University Hospital, Olomouc, Czech Republic.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sauer, P; Síla, J; Stosová, T; Vecerová, R; Hejnar, P; Vágnerová, I; Kolár, M; Raclavsky, V; Petrzelová, J; Lovecková, Y; Koukalová, D

    2008-04-01

    A rather fast and complicated progression of an infection caused by some strains of Staphylococcus aureus could be associated with the expression and co-action of virulence factor complexes in these strains. This study screened the antibiotic susceptibility and prevalence of virulence markers in isolates of meticillin-resistant S. aureus (MRSA) obtained from patients hospitalized at the University Hospital in Olomouc, Czech Republic. A total of 100 isolates was screened for 13 genes encoding extracellular virulence determinants (tst, pvl, eta, etb, sea, seb, sec, sed, see, seg, seh, sei and sej) and for their distribution in sample types. Eighty-nine isolates were positive for at least one of the genes. Genes for etb, pvl, see and seh were not detected in any of the MRSA isolates. No statistically significant differences in the occurrence of the determinants studied among sample types were found.

  4. Sequence Analysis of Hypothetical Proteins from 26695 to Identify Potential Virulence Factors

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    Ahmad Abu Turab Naqvi

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available Helicobacter pylori is a Gram-negative bacteria that is responsible for gastritis in human. Its spiral flagellated body helps in locomotion and colonization in the host environment. It is capable of living in the highly acidic environment of the stomach with the help of acid adaptive genes. The genome of H. pylori 26695 strain contains 1,555 coding genes that encode 1,445 proteins. Out of these, 340 proteins are characterized as hypothetical proteins (HP. This study involves extensive analysis of the HPs using an established pipeline which comprises various bioinformatics tools and databases to find out probable functions of the HPs and identification of virulence factors. After extensive analysis of all the 340 HPs, we found that 104 HPs are showing characteristic similarities with the proteins with known functions. Thus, on the basis of such similarities, we assigned probable functions to 104 HPs with high confidence and precision. All the predicted HPs contain representative members of diverse functional classes of proteins such as enzymes, transporters, binding proteins, regulatory proteins, proteins involved in cellular processes and other proteins with miscellaneous functions. Therefore, we classified 104 HPs into aforementioned functional groups. During the virulence factors analysis of the HPs, we found 11 HPs are showing significant virulence. The identification of virulence proteins with the help their predicted functions may pave the way for drug target estimation and development of effective drug to counter the activity of that protein.

  5. The Aspergillus fumigatus siderophore biosynthetic gene sidA, encoding L-ornithine N5-oxygenase, is required for virulence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hissen, Anna H T; Wan, Adrian N C; Warwas, Mark L; Pinto, Linda J; Moore, Margo M

    2005-09-01

    Aspergillus fumigatus is the leading cause of invasive mold infection and is a serious problem in immunocompromised populations worldwide. We have previously shown that survival of A. fumigatus in serum may be related to secretion of siderophores. In this study, we identified and characterized the sidA gene of A. fumigatus, which encodes l-ornithine N(5)-oxygenase, the first committed step in hydroxamate siderophore biosynthesis. A. fumigatus sidA codes for a protein of 501 amino acids with significant homology to other fungal l-ornithine N(5)-oxygenases. A stable DeltasidA strain was created by deletion of A. fumigatus sidA. This strain was unable to synthesize the siderophores N',N",N'''-triacetylfusarinine C (TAF) and ferricrocin. Growth of the DeltasidA strain was the same as that of the wild type in rich media; however, the DeltasidA strain was unable to grow in low-iron defined media or media containing 10% human serum unless supplemented with TAF or ferricrocin. No significant differences in ferric reduction activities were observed between the parental strain and the DeltasidA strain, indicating that blocking siderophore secretion did not result in upregulation of this pathway. Unlike the parental strain, the DeltasidA strain was unable to remove iron from human transferrin. A rescued strain (DeltasidA + sidA) was constructed; it produced siderophores and had the same growth as the wild type on iron-limited media. Unlike the wild-type and rescued strains, the DeltasidA strain was avirulent in a mouse model of invasive aspergillosis, indicating that sidA is necessary for A. fumigatus virulence.

  6. Systematic mutagenesis of genes encoding predicted autotransported proteins of Burkholderia pseudomallei identifies factors mediating virulence in mice, net intracellular replication and a novel protein conferring serum resistance.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Natalie R Lazar Adler

    Full Text Available Burkholderia pseudomallei is the causative agent of the severe tropical disease melioidosis, which commonly presents as sepsis. The B. pseudomallei K96243 genome encodes eleven predicted autotransporters, a diverse family of secreted and outer membrane proteins often associated with virulence. In a systematic study of these autotransporters, we constructed insertion mutants in each gene predicted to encode an autotransporter and assessed them for three pathogenesis-associated phenotypes: virulence in the BALB/c intra-peritoneal mouse melioidosis model, net intracellular replication in J774.2 murine macrophage-like cells and survival in 45% (v/v normal human serum. From the complete repertoire of eleven autotransporter mutants, we identified eight mutants which exhibited an increase in median lethal dose of 1 to 2-log10 compared to the isogenic parent strain (bcaA, boaA, boaB, bpaA, bpaC, bpaE, bpaF and bimA. Four mutants, all demonstrating attenuation for virulence, exhibited reduced net intracellular replication in J774.2 macrophage-like cells (bimA, boaB, bpaC and bpaE. A single mutant (bpaC was identified that exhibited significantly reduced serum survival compared to wild-type. The bpaC mutant, which demonstrated attenuation for virulence and net intracellular replication, was sensitive to complement-mediated killing via the classical and/or lectin pathway. Serum resistance was rescued by in trans complementation. Subsequently, we expressed recombinant proteins of the passenger domain of four predicted autotransporters representing each of the phenotypic groups identified: those attenuated for virulence (BcaA, those attenuated for virulence and net intracellular replication (BpaE, the BpaC mutant with defects in virulence, net intracellular replication and serum resistance and those displaying wild-type phenotypes (BatA. Only BcaA and BpaE elicited a strong IFN-γ response in a restimulation assay using whole blood from seropositive donors

  7. Recent urbanization in China is correlated with a Westernized microbiome encoding increased virulence and antibiotic resistance genes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Winglee, Kathryn; Howard, Annie Green; Sha, Wei; Gharaibeh, Raad Z; Liu, Jiawu; Jin, Donghui; Fodor, Anthony A; Gordon-Larsen, Penny

    2017-09-15

    Urbanization is associated with an increased risk for a number of diseases, including obesity, diabetes, and cancer, which all also show associations with the microbiome. While microbial community composition has been shown to vary across continents and in traditional versus Westernized societies, few studies have examined urban-rural differences in neighboring communities within a single country undergoing rapid urbanization. In this study, we compared the gut microbiome, plasma metabolome, dietary habits, and health biomarkers of rural and urban people from a single Chinese province. We identified significant differences in the microbiota and microbiota-related plasma metabolites in rural versus recently urban subjects from the Hunan province of China. Microbes with higher relative abundance in Chinese urban samples have been associated with disease in other studies and were substantially more prevalent in the Human Microbiome Project cohort of American subjects. Furthermore, using whole metagenome sequencing, we found that urbanization was associated with a loss of microbial diversity and changes in the relative abundances of Viruses, Archaea, and Bacteria. Gene diversity, however, increased with urbanization, along with the proportion of reads associated with antibiotic resistance and virulence, which were strongly correlated with the presence of Escherichia and Shigella. Our data suggest that urbanization has produced convergent evolution of the gut microbial composition in American and urban Chinese populations, resulting in similar compositional patterns of abundant microbes through similar lifestyles on different continents, including a loss of potentially beneficial bacteria and an increase in potentially harmful genes via increased relative abundance of Escherichia and Shigella.

  8. Targeting Staphylococcus aureus Toxins: A Potential form of Anti-Virulence Therapy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cin Kong

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available Staphylococcus aureus is an opportunistic pathogen and the leading cause of a wide range of severe clinical infections. The range of diseases reflects the diversity of virulence factors produced by this pathogen. To establish an infection in the host, S. aureus expresses an inclusive set of virulence factors such as toxins, enzymes, adhesins, and other surface proteins that allow the pathogen to survive under extreme conditions and are essential for the bacteria’s ability to spread through tissues. Expression and secretion of this array of toxins and enzymes are tightly controlled by a number of regulatory systems. S. aureus is also notorious for its ability to resist the arsenal of currently available antibiotics and dissemination of various multidrug-resistant S. aureus clones limits therapeutic options for a S. aureus infection. Recently, the development of anti-virulence therapeutics that neutralize S. aureus toxins or block the pathways that regulate toxin production has shown potential in thwarting the bacteria’s acquisition of antibiotic resistance. In this review, we provide insights into the regulation of S. aureus toxin production and potential anti-virulence strategies that target S. aureus toxins.

  9. Comparative Genomics of Mycoplasma bovis Strains Reveals That Decreased Virulence with Increasing Passages Might Correlate with Potential Virulence-Related Factors

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Muhammad A. Rasheed

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available Mycoplasma bovis is an important cause of bovine respiratory disease worldwide. To understand its virulence mechanisms, we sequenced three attenuated M. bovis strains, P115, P150, and P180, which were passaged in vitro 115, 150, and 180 times, respectively, and exhibited progressively decreasing virulence. Comparative genomics was performed among the wild-type M. bovis HB0801 (P1 strain and the P115, P150, and P180 strains, and one 14.2-kb deleted region covering 14 genes was detected in the passaged strains. Additionally, 46 non-sense single-nucleotide polymorphisms and indels were detected, which confirmed that more passages result in more mutations. A subsequent collective bioinformatics analysis of paralogs, metabolic pathways, protein-protein interactions, secretory proteins, functionally conserved domains, and virulence-related factors identified 11 genes that likely contributed to the increased attenuation in the passaged strains. These genes encode ascorbate-specific phosphotransferase system enzyme IIB and IIA components, enolase, L-lactate dehydrogenase, pyruvate kinase, glycerol, and multiple sugar ATP-binding cassette transporters, ATP binding proteins, NADH dehydrogenase, phosphate acetyltransferase, transketolase, and a variable surface protein. Fifteen genes were shown to be enriched in 15 metabolic pathways, and they included the aforementioned genes encoding pyruvate kinase, transketolase, enolase, and L-lactate dehydrogenase. Hydrogen peroxide (H2O2 production in M. bovis strains representing seven passages from P1 to P180 decreased progressively with increasing numbers of passages and increased attenuation. However, eight mutants specific to eight individual genes within the 14.2-kb deleted region did not exhibit altered H2O2 production. These results enrich the M. bovis genomics database, and they increase our understanding of the mechanisms underlying M. bovis virulence.

  10. Carbon nanoparticles in lateral flow methods to detect genes encoding virulence factors of Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Noguera, P.; Posthuma-Trumpie, G.A.; Tuil, van M.; Wal, van der F.J.; Boer, de A.; Moers, A.P.H.A.; Amerongen, van A.

    2011-01-01

    The use of carbon nanoparticles is shown for the detection and identification of different Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli virulence factors (vt1, vt2, eae and ehxA) and a 16S control (specific for E. coli) based on the use of lateral flow strips (nucleic acid lateral flow immunoassay,

  11. The gut bacterium Bacteroides thetaiotaomicron influences the virulence potential of the enterohemorrhagic Escherichia coli O103:H25.

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    Hildegunn Iversen

    Full Text Available Enterohemorrhagic E. coli (EHEC is associated with severe gastrointestinal disease. Upon entering the gastrointestinal tract, EHEC is exposed to a fluctuating environment and a myriad of other bacterial species. To establish an infection, EHEC strains have to modulate their gene expression according to the GI tract environment. In order to explore the interspecies interactions between EHEC and an human intestinal commensal, the global gene expression profile was determined of EHEC O103:H25 (EHEC NIPH-11060424 co-cultured with B. thetaiotaomicron (CCUG 10774 or grown in the presence of spent medium from B. thetaiotaomicron. Microarray analysis revealed that approximately 1% of the EHEC NIPH-11060424 genes were significantly up-regulated both in co-culture (30 genes and in the presence of spent medium (44 genes, and that the affected genes differed between the two conditions. In co-culture, genes encoding structural components of the type three secretion system were among the most affected genes with an almost 4-fold up-regulation, while the most affected genes in spent medium were involved in chemotaxis and were more than 3-fold up-regulated. The operons for type three secretion system (TTSS are located on the Locus of enterocyte effacement (LEE pathogenicity island, and qPCR showed that genes of all five operons (LEE1-LEE5 were up-regulated. Moreover, an increased adherence to HeLa cells was observed in EHEC NIPH-11060424 exposed to B. thetaiotaomicron. Expression of stx2 genes, encoding the main virulence factor of EHEC, was down-regulated in both conditions (co-culture/spent medium. These results show that expression of EHEC genes involved in colonization and virulence is modulated in response to direct interspecies contact between cells, or to diffusible factors released from B. thetaiotaomicron. Such interspecies interactions could allow the pathogen to recognize its predilection site and modulate its behaviour accordingly, thus increasing

  12. Distribution of genes encoding virulence factors and molecular analysis of Shigella spp. isolated from patients with diarrhea in Kerman, Iran.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hosseini Nave, Hossein; Mansouri, Shahla; Emaneini, Mohammad; Moradi, Mohammad

    2016-03-01

    Shigella is one of the important causes of diarrhea worldwide. Shigella has several virulence factors contributing in colonization and invasion of epithelial cells and eventually death of host cells. The present study was performed in order to investigate the distribution of virulence factors genes in Shigella spp. isolated from patients with acute diarrhea in Kerman, Iran as well as the genetic relationship of these isolates. A total of 56 isolates including 31 S. flexneri, 18 S. sonnei and 7 S. boydii were evaluated by polymerase chain reaction (PCR) for the presence of 11 virulence genes (ipaH, ial, set1A, set1B, sen, virF, invE, sat, sigA, pic and sepA). Then, the clonal relationship of these strains was analyzed by multilocus variable-number tandem repeat analysis (MLVA) method. All isolates were positive for ipaH gene. The other genes include ial, invE and virF were found in 80.4%, 60.7% and 67.9% of the isolates, respectively. Both set1A and set1B were detected in 32.3% of S. flexneri isolates, whereas 66.1% of the isolates belonging to different serogroup carried sen gene. The sat gene was present in all S. flexneri isolates, but not in the S. sonnei and S. boydii isolates. The result showed, 30.4% of isolates were simultaneously positive and the rest of the isolates were negative for sepA and pic genes. The Shigella isolates were divided into 29 MLVA types. This study, for the first time, investigated distribution of 11 virulence genes in Shigella spp. Our results revealed heterogeneity of virulence genes in different Shigella serogroups. Furthermore, the strains belonging to the same species had little diversity. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  13. Virulence potential of filamentous fungi isolated from poultry barns in Cascavel, Paraná, Brazil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cleison Ledesma Taira

    2011-03-01

    Full Text Available Opportunistic fungi are those that normally would not cause diseases in otherwise healthy people, but are able to cause problems under some circumstances, and for this they need to possess a certain virulence potential. The objective of this study was to identify samples of filamentous fungi isolated from poultry barns in Cascavel, Paraná, and also to evaluate their virulence potential by assessing proteinase production, hemolytic activity, urease production, and growth rate at 37 ºC. We have evaluated the following samples: Acremonium hyalinulum (1 sample, Aspergillus sp. (12, Beauveria bassiana (1, Curvularia brachyspora (1, Paecilomyces variotti (1, and Penicillium sp. (2. Out of the 18 samples analyzed, 44.4% showed proteolytic activity using albumin as the substrate versus 66.7% when using casein; 66.7% showed hemolytic activity, 83.3% were positive for urea, and 88.9% grew at a temperature of 37 ºC. The results demonstrated that the majority of the isolates expressed virulence factors. Therefore, these isolates have the potential to harm human hosts, such as those working at poultry barns, especially predisposed or susceptible individuals.Fungos oportunistas são aqueles que normalmente não causariam doenças em pessoas saudáveis, mas eles são capazes de causar problemas sob certas circunstâncias e, para isso, eles necessitam possuir algum potencial de virulência. O objetivo deste trabalho foi identificar amostras de fungos filamentosos isolados de granjas de aves em Cascavel, Paraná, e também avaliar o seu potencial de virulência, verificando a produção de proteinase, atividade hemolítica, produção de urease e crescimento a 37 ºC. Foram avaliados Acremonium hyalinulum (01, Aspergillus sp (12, Beauveria bassiana (01, Curvularia brachyspora (01, Paecylomices variotti (01 e Penicillium sp (02. Das 18 amostras, 44,4% apresentaram atividade proteolítica usando como substrato a albumina e 66,7% com caseína; 66,7% demonstraram

  14. Bacteriocinogenic potential and virulence traits of Enterococcus faecium and E. faecalis isolated from human milk

    Science.gov (United States)

    Khalkhali, Soodabeh; Mojgani, Naheed

    2017-01-01

    Background and Objectives: Human milk is a continuous supply of Lactic Acid bacteria (LAB), including enterococci with probiotic potentials. The aim of this study was to analyze two Enterococcus species, isolated from human milk for their probiotic potential, bacteriocin producing ability and virulence traits. Materials and Methods: Enterococcus faecium TA0033 and E. faecalis TA102 were tested for acid and bile tolerance, survival in simulated gastric and intestinal conditions. The antibacterial spectrum of the isolates was tested by agar well diffusion assay. The antagonistic agent was characterized by physico-chemical methods. The enterocin structural genes, virulence determinants, vancomycin resistance and biogenic amine genes, such as hdc1, hdc2, tdc, ldc and odc were also determined. Results: The tested isolates survived acidic conditions, high bile salt (1%), simulated gastric and intestinal conditions. The culture supernatant fluids of the two isolates inhibited the growth of Escherichia coli, Listeria monocytogenes, Salmonella typhi, Staphylococcus aureus, Shigella dysenteriae and Streptococcus agalactiae. The antagonistic activity was lost in the presence of proteolytic enzymes but tolerated the action of catalase, lysozyme and lipase. In contrast to enterocin TA102, enterocin TA0033 possessed bactericidal mode of action. Bacteriocin structural genes, entA and entB were present in the genome of the two isolates, while E. faecalis TA102 additionally harboured entP and bac31 genes. The phenotypic and genotypic virulence assessment studies indicated hyaluronidase (hyl) production and vancomycin resistance in E. faecalis TA102 while, none of the isolates harboured the biogenic amine genes. Conclusion: The presence of virulence genes in E. faecalis TA102 calls for careful monitoring of Enterococcus isolates for their safety parameters. PMID:29238458

  15. Staphylococcus aureus Isolates from Bovine Mastitis in Eight Countries: Genotypes, Detection of Genes Encoding Different Toxins and Other Virulence Genes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Valentina Monistero

    2018-06-01

    Full Text Available Staphylococcus aureus is recognized worldwide as one of the major agents of dairy cow intra-mammary infections. This microorganism can express a wide spectrum of pathogenic factors used to attach, colonize, invade and infect the host. The present study evaluated 120 isolates from eight different countries that were genotyped by RS-PCR and investigated for 26 different virulence factors to increase the knowledge on the circulating genetic lineages among the cow population with mastitis. New genotypes were observed for South African strains while for all the other countries new variants of existing genotypes were detected. For each country, a specific genotypic pattern was found. Among the virulence factors, fmtB, cna, clfA and leucocidins genes were the most frequent. The sea and sei genes were present in seven out of eight countries; seh showed high frequency in South American countries (Brazil, Colombia, Argentina, while sel was harboured especially in one Mediterranean country (Tunisia. The etb, seb and see genes were not detected in any of the isolates, while only two isolates were MRSA (Germany and Italy confirming the low diffusion of methicillin resistance microorganism among bovine mastitis isolates. This work demonstrated the wide variety of S. aureus genotypes found in dairy cattle worldwide. This condition suggests that considering the region of interest might help to formulate strategies for reducing the infection spreading.

  16. Processing plant persistent strains of Listeria monocytogenes appear to have a lower virulence potential than clinical strains in selected virulence models

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jensen, Anne; Thomsen, L.E.; Jørgensen, R.L.

    2008-01-01

    cell line, Caco-2; time to death in a nematode model, Caenorhabditis elegans and in a fruit fly model, Drosophila melanogaster and fecal shedding in a guinea pig model. All strains adhered to and grew in Caco-2 cells in similar levels. When exposed to 10(6) CFU/ml, two strains representing......% killed C elegans worms was longer (110 h) for the RAPD type 9 strains than for the other four strains (80 h). The Scott A strain and one RAPD type 9 strain were suspended in whipping cream before being fed to guinea pigs and the persistent RAPD type 9 strain was isolated from feces in a lower level...... to contaminate food products, and it is important to determine their virulence potential to evaluate risk to consumers. We compared the behaviour of food processing persistent and clinical L. monocytogenes strains in four virulence models: Adhesion, invasion and intracellular growth was studied in an epithelial...

  17. VRprofile: gene-cluster-detection-based profiling of virulence and antibiotic resistance traits encoded within genome sequences of pathogenic bacteria.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Jun; Tai, Cui; Deng, Zixin; Zhong, Weihong; He, Yongqun; Ou, Hong-Yu

    2017-01-10

    VRprofile is a Web server that facilitates rapid investigation of virulence and antibiotic resistance genes, as well as extends these trait transfer-related genetic contexts, in newly sequenced pathogenic bacterial genomes. The used backend database MobilomeDB was firstly built on sets of known gene cluster loci of bacterial type III/IV/VI/VII secretion systems and mobile genetic elements, including integrative and conjugative elements, prophages, class I integrons, IS elements and pathogenicity/antibiotic resistance islands. VRprofile is thus able to co-localize the homologs of these conserved gene clusters using HMMer or BLASTp searches. With the integration of the homologous gene cluster search module with a sequence composition module, VRprofile has exhibited better performance for island-like region predictions than the other widely used methods. In addition, VRprofile also provides an integrated Web interface for aligning and visualizing identified gene clusters with MobilomeDB-archived gene clusters, or a variety set of bacterial genomes. VRprofile might contribute to meet the increasing demands of re-annotations of bacterial variable regions, and aid in the real-time definitions of disease-relevant gene clusters in pathogenic bacteria of interest. VRprofile is freely available at http://bioinfo-mml.sjtu.edu.cn/VRprofile. © The Author 2017. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  18. Overexpression of Adenylyl Cyclase Encoded by the Mycobacterium tuberculosis Rv2212 Gene Confers Improved Fitness, Accelerated Recovery from Dormancy and Enhanced Virulence in Mice

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Margarita O. Shleeva

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available Earlier we demonstrated that the adenylyl cyclase (AC encoded by the MSMEG_4279 gene plays a key role in the resuscitation and growth of dormant Mycobacterium smegmatis and that overexpression of this gene leads to an increase in intracellular cAMP concentration and prevents the transition of M. smegmatis from active growth to dormancy in an extended stationary phase accompanied by medium acidification. We surmised that the homologous Rv2212 gene of M. tuberculosis (Mtb, the main cAMP producer, plays similar physiological roles by supporting, under these conditions, the active state and reactivation of dormant bacteria. To test this hypothesis, we established Mtb strain overexpressing Rv2212 and compared its in vitro and in vivo growth characteristics with a control strain. In vitro, the AC-overexpressing pMindRv2212 strain demonstrated faster growth in a liquid medium, prolonged capacity to form CFUs and a significant delay or even prevention of transition toward dormancy. AC-overexpressing cells exhibited easier recovery from dormancy. In vivo, AC-overexpressing bacteria demonstrated significantly higher growth rates (virulence in the lungs and spleens of infected mice compared to the control strain, and, unlike the latter, killed mice in the TB-resistant strain before month 8 of infection. Even in the absence of selecting hygromycin B, all pMindRv2212 CFUs retained the Rv2212 insert during in vivo growth, strongly suggesting that AC overexpression is beneficial for bacteria. Taken together, our results indicate that cAMP supports the maintenance of Mtb cells vitality under unfavorable conditions in vitro and their virulence in vivo.

  19. Methodology optimization and diversification for the investigation of virulence potential in Haemophilus influenzae clinical strains.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Giucă, Mihaela Cristina; Străuţ, Monica; Surdeanu, Maria; Nica, Maria; Ungureanu, Vasilica; Mihăescu, Grigore

    2011-01-01

    Ten Haemophilus influenzae strains were isolated from patients aged between 1.6 - 24 years, with various diagnoses (acute meningitis, acute upper respiratory infection, otitis media and acute sinusitis). Identification was based on phenotypic and molecular characteristics; antibiotic susceptibility testing was performed by diffusion method according to CLSI standards 2011 for seven antibiotics. The results of molecular testing showed that all the studied strains produced an amplicon of 1000 bp with ompP2 primers indicating that all strains were H. influenzae. For six strains, the PCR amplicon obtained with bexA specific primers, proving that the strains were capsulated. The results of phenotypic testing showed that four strains were ampicillin nonsusceptible and (beta-lactamase-positive. The virulence potential of H. influenzae clinical strains was investigated by phenotypic methods, including the assessment of the soluble virulence factors on specific media containing the biochemical substratum for the investigated enzymatic factor, as well as the adherence and invasion capacity to HeLa cells monolayer using Cravioto modified method. The studied strains exhibited mainly a diffuse adherence pattern and different adherence indexes. Interestingly, two strains isolated from the same pacient (blood and CSF) showed a different degree of invasiveness, the strain isolated from blood being 20 times more invasive than the one isolated from CSF.

  20. Linking Genomo- and Pathotype: Exploiting the Zebrafish Embryo Model to Investigate the Divergent Virulence Potential among Cronobacter spp.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Athmanya K Eshwar

    Full Text Available Bacteria belonging to the genus Cronobacter have been recognized as causative agents of life-threatening systemic infections primarily in premature, low-birth weight and immune-compromised neonates. Apparently not all Cronobacter species are linked to infantile infections and it has been proposed that virulence varies among strains. Whole genome comparisons and in silico analysis have proven to be powerful tools in elucidating potential virulence determinants, the presence/absence of which may explain the differential virulence behaviour of strains. However, validation of these factors has in the past been hampered by the availability of a suitable neonatal animal model. In the present study we have used zebrafish embryos to model Cronobacter infections in vivo using wild type and genetically engineered strains. Our experiments confirmed the role of the RepF1B-like plasmids as "virulence plasmids" in Cronobacter and underpinned the importantce of two putative virulence factors-cpa and zpx-in in vivo pathogenesis. We propose that by using this model in vivo infection studies are now possible on a large scale level which will boost the understanding on the virulence strategies employed by these pathogens.

  1. Antibiotic susceptibility profiling and virulence potential of Campylobacter jejuni isolates from different sources in Pakistan.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Siddiqui, Fariha Masood; Akram, Muhammad; Noureen, Nighat; Noreen, Zobia; Bokhari, Habib

    2015-03-01

    To determine antibiotic resistance patterns and virulence potential of Campylobacter jejuni (C. jejuni) isolates from clinical human diarrheal infections, cattle and healthy broilers. Antibiotic sensitivity patterns of C. jejuni isolates were determined by Kirby Bauer Disc Diffusion assay. These isolates were then subjected to virulence profiling for the detection of mapA (membrane-associated protein), cadF (fibronectin binding protein), wlaN (beta-l,3-galactosyltransferase) and neuAB (sialic acid biosynthesis gene). Further C. jejuni isolates were grouped by random amplification of polymorphic DNA (RAPD) profiling. A total of 436 samples from poultry (n=88), cattle (n=216) and humans (n=132) from different locations were collected. Results revealed percentage of C. jejuni isolates were 35.2% (31/88), 25.0% (54/216) and 11.3% (15/132) among poultry, cattle and clinical human samples respectively. Antibiotic susceptibility results showed that similar resistance patterns to cephalothin was ie. 87.0%, 87.1% and 89%among humans, poultry and cattle respectively, followed by sulfamethoxazole+trimethoprim 40.0%, 38.7% and 31.0% in humans, poultry and cattle and Ampicillin 40%, 32% and 20% in humans, poultry and cattle respectively. Beta-lactamase activity was detected in 40.00% humans, 20.37% cattle and 32.25% in poultry C. jejuni isolates. CadF and mapA were present in all poultry, cattle and human C. jejuni isolates, wlaN was not detected in any isolate and neuAB was found in 9/31 (36%) poultry isolates. RAPD profiling results suggested high diversity of C. jejuni isolates. Detection of multidrug resistant C. jejuni strains from poultry and cattle is alarming as they can be potential hazard to humans. Moreover, predominant association of virulence factors, cadF and mapA (100% each) in C. jejuni isolates from all sources and neuAB (36%) with poultry isolates suggest the potential source of transmission of diverse types of C. jejuni to humans. Copyright © 2015 Hainan

  2. The plasmid-encoded Ipf and Klf fimbriae display different expression and varying roles in the virulence of Salmonella enterica serovar Infantis in mouse vs. avian hosts.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gili Aviv

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available Salmonella enterica serovar Infantis is one of the prevalent Salmonella serovars worldwide. Different emergent clones of S. Infantis were shown to acquire the pESI virulence-resistance megaplasmid affecting its ecology and pathogenicity. Here, we studied two previously uncharacterized pESI-encoded chaperone-usher fimbriae, named Ipf and Klf. While Ipf homologs are rare and were found only in S. enterica subspecies diarizonae and subspecies VII, Klf is related to the known K88-Fae fimbria and klf clusters were identified in seven S. enterica subspecies I serovars, harboring interchanging alleles of the fimbria major subunit, KlfG. Regulation studies showed that the klf genes expression is negatively and positively controlled by the pESI-encoded regulators KlfL and KlfB, respectively, and are activated by the ancestral leucine-responsive regulator (Lrp. ipf genes are negatively regulated by Fur and activated by OmpR. Furthermore, induced expression of both klf and ipf clusters occurs under microaerobic conditions and at 41°C compared to 37°C, in-vitro. Consistent with these results, we demonstrate higher expression of ipf and klf in chicks compared to mice, characterized by physiological temperature of 41.2°C and 37°C, respectively. Interestingly, while Klf was dispensable for S. Infantis colonization in the mouse, Ipf was required for maximal colonization in the murine ileum. In contrast to these phenotypes in mice, both Klf and Ipf contributed to a restrained infection in chicks, where the absence of these fimbriae has led to moderately higher bacterial burden in the avian host. Taken together, these data suggest that physiological differences between host species, such as the body temperature, can confer differences in fimbriome expression, affecting Salmonella colonization and other host-pathogen interplays.

  3. The α2,3-sialyltransferase encoded by myxoma virus is a virulence factor that contributes to immunosuppression.

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    Bérengère Boutard

    Full Text Available Myxoma virus (MYXV induces a lethal disease called Myxomatosis in European rabbits. MYXV is one of the rare viruses that encodes an α2,3-sialyltransferase through its M138L gene. In this study, we showed that although the absence of the enzyme was not associated with any in vitro deficit, the M138L deficient strains are highly attenuated in vivo. Indeed, while all rabbits infected with the parental and the revertant strains died within 9 days post-infection from severe myxomatosis, all but one rabbit inoculated with the M138L deficient strains survived the infection. In primary lesions, this resistance to the infection was associated with an increased ability of innate immune cells, mostly neutrophils, to migrate to the site of virus replication at 4 days post-infection. This was followed by the development of a better specific immune response against MYXV. Indeed, at day 9 post-infection, we observed an important proliferation of lymphocytes and an intense congestion of blood vessels in lymph nodes after M138L knockouts infection. Accordingly, in these rabbits, we observed an intense mononuclear cell infiltration throughout the dermis in primary lesions and higher titers of neutralizing antibodies. Finally, this adaptive immune response provided protection to these surviving rabbits against a challenge with the MYXV WT strain. Altogether, these results show that expression of the M138L gene contributes directly or indirectly to immune evasion by MYXV. In the future, these results could help us to better understand the pathogenesis of myxomatosis but also the importance of glycans in regulation of immune responses.

  4. The α2,3-sialyltransferase encoded by myxoma virus is a virulence factor that contributes to immunosuppression.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boutard, Bérengère; Vankerckhove, Sophie; Markine-Goriaynoff, Nicolas; Sarlet, Mickaël; Desmecht, Daniel; McFadden, Grant; Vanderplasschen, Alain; Gillet, Laurent

    2015-01-01

    Myxoma virus (MYXV) induces a lethal disease called Myxomatosis in European rabbits. MYXV is one of the rare viruses that encodes an α2,3-sialyltransferase through its M138L gene. In this study, we showed that although the absence of the enzyme was not associated with any in vitro deficit, the M138L deficient strains are highly attenuated in vivo. Indeed, while all rabbits infected with the parental and the revertant strains died within 9 days post-infection from severe myxomatosis, all but one rabbit inoculated with the M138L deficient strains survived the infection. In primary lesions, this resistance to the infection was associated with an increased ability of innate immune cells, mostly neutrophils, to migrate to the site of virus replication at 4 days post-infection. This was followed by the development of a better specific immune response against MYXV. Indeed, at day 9 post-infection, we observed an important proliferation of lymphocytes and an intense congestion of blood vessels in lymph nodes after M138L knockouts infection. Accordingly, in these rabbits, we observed an intense mononuclear cell infiltration throughout the dermis in primary lesions and higher titers of neutralizing antibodies. Finally, this adaptive immune response provided protection to these surviving rabbits against a challenge with the MYXV WT strain. Altogether, these results show that expression of the M138L gene contributes directly or indirectly to immune evasion by MYXV. In the future, these results could help us to better understand the pathogenesis of myxomatosis but also the importance of glycans in regulation of immune responses.

  5. The Potential Link between Thermal Resistance and Virulence in Salmonella: A Review

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    Turki M. Dawoud

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available In some animals, the typical body temperature can be higher than humans, for example, 42°C in poultry and 40°C in rabbits which can be a potential thermal stress challenge for pathogens. Even in animals with lower body temperatures, when infection occurs, the immune system may increase body temperature to reduce the chance of survival for pathogens. However, some pathogens can still easily overcome higher body temperatures and/or rise in body temperatures through expression of stress response mechanisms. Salmonella is the causative agent of one of the most prevalent foodborne illnesses, salmonellosis, and can readily survive over a wide range of temperatures due to the efficient expression of the heat (thermal stress response. Therefore, thermal resistance mechanisms can provide cross protection against other stresses including the non-specific host defenses found within the human body thus increasing pathogenic potential. Understanding the molecular mechanisms associated with thermal responses in Salmonella is crucial in designing and developing more effective or new treatments for reducing and eliminating infection caused by Salmonella that have survived heat stress. In this review, Salmonella thermal resistance is assessed followed by an overview of the thermal stress responses with a focus on gene regulation by sigma factors, heat shock proteins, along with the corresponding thermosensors and their association with virulence expression including a focus on a potential link between heat resistance and potential for infection.

  6. Virulence potential of Escherichia coli strains causing asymptomatic bacteriuria during pregnancy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lavigne, Jean-Philippe; Boutet-Dubois, Adeline; Laouini, Dorsaf; Combescure, Christophe; Bouziges, Nicole; Marès, Pierre; Sotto, Albert

    2011-11-01

    We compared the virulence properties of a collection of asymptomatic bacteriuria (ABU) Escherichia coli strains to urinary tract infection (UTI) strains isolated from pregnant women in a university hospital over 1 year. The in vitro and in vivo studies suggest that ABU strains presented a virulence behavior similar to that of strains isolated from cases of cystitis.

  7. Comparative profiling of the transcriptional response to iron restriction in six serotypes of Actinobacillus pleuropneumoniae with different virulence potential

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Schou, Kirstine Klitgaard; Friis, Carsten; Angen, Øystein

    2011-01-01

    Background Comparative analysis of gene expression among serotypes within a species can provide valuable information on important differences between related genomes. For the pig lung pathogen Actinobacillus pleuropneumoniae, 15 serotypes with a considerable variation in virulence potential...... and immunogenicity have been identified. This serotypic diversity can only partly be explained by amount of capsule and differences in the RTX toxin genes in their genomes. Iron acquisition in vivo is an important bacterial function and in pathogenic bacteria, iron-limitation is often a signal for the induction...... of virulence genes. We used a pan-genomic microarray to study the transcriptional response to iron restriction in vitro in six serotypes of A. pleuropneumoniae (1, 2, 3, 5b, 6, and 7), representing at least two levels of virulence. Results In total, 45 genes were significantly (p

  8. Genome-wide analysis of gene expression and protein secretion of Babesia canis during virulent infection identifies potential pathogenicity factors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eichenberger, Ramon M; Ramakrishnan, Chandra; Russo, Giancarlo; Deplazes, Peter; Hehl, Adrian B

    2017-06-13

    Infections of dogs with virulent strains of Babesia canis are characterized by rapid onset and high mortality, comparable to complicated human malaria. As in other apicomplexan parasites, most Babesia virulence factors responsible for survival and pathogenicity are secreted to the host cell surface and beyond where they remodel and biochemically modify the infected cell interacting with host proteins in a very specific manner. Here, we investigated factors secreted by B. canis during acute infections in dogs and report on in silico predictions and experimental analysis of the parasite's exportome. As a backdrop, we generated a fully annotated B. canis genome sequence of a virulent Hungarian field isolate (strain BcH-CHIPZ) underpinned by extensive genome-wide RNA-seq analysis. We find evidence for conserved factors in apicomplexan hemoparasites involved in immune-evasion (e.g. VESA-protein family), proteins secreted across the iRBC membrane into the host bloodstream (e.g. SA- and Bc28 protein families), potential moonlighting proteins (e.g. profilin and histones), and uncharacterized antigens present during acute crisis in dogs. The combined data provides a first predicted and partially validated set of potential virulence factors exported during fatal infections, which can be exploited for urgently needed innovative intervention strategies aimed at facilitating diagnosis and management of canine babesiosis.

  9. Nonlinear inversion of potential-field data using a hybrid-encoding genetic algorithm

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, C.; Xia, J.; Liu, J.; Feng, G.

    2006-01-01

    Using a genetic algorithm to solve an inverse problem of complex nonlinear geophysical equations is advantageous because it does not require computer gradients of models or "good" initial models. The multi-point search of a genetic algorithm makes it easier to find the globally optimal solution while avoiding falling into a local extremum. As is the case in other optimization approaches, the search efficiency for a genetic algorithm is vital in finding desired solutions successfully in a multi-dimensional model space. A binary-encoding genetic algorithm is hardly ever used to resolve an optimization problem such as a simple geophysical inversion with only three unknowns. The encoding mechanism, genetic operators, and population size of the genetic algorithm greatly affect search processes in the evolution. It is clear that improved operators and proper population size promote the convergence. Nevertheless, not all genetic operations perform perfectly while searching under either a uniform binary or a decimal encoding system. With the binary encoding mechanism, the crossover scheme may produce more new individuals than with the decimal encoding. On the other hand, the mutation scheme in a decimal encoding system will create new genes larger in scope than those in the binary encoding. This paper discusses approaches of exploiting the search potential of genetic operations in the two encoding systems and presents an approach with a hybrid-encoding mechanism, multi-point crossover, and dynamic population size for geophysical inversion. We present a method that is based on the routine in which the mutation operation is conducted in the decimal code and multi-point crossover operation in the binary code. The mix-encoding algorithm is called the hybrid-encoding genetic algorithm (HEGA). HEGA provides better genes with a higher probability by a mutation operator and improves genetic algorithms in resolving complicated geophysical inverse problems. Another significant

  10. Understanding Virulence in the Brucellae and Francisellae: Towards Efficacious Treatments for Two Potential Biothreat Agents

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Rasley, A; Parsons, D A; El-Etr, S; Roux, C; Tsolis, R

    2009-12-30

    Francisella tularensis, Yersinia pestis and Brucellae species are highly infectious pathogens classified as select agents by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) with the potential for use in bioterrorism attacks. These organisms are known to be facultative intracellular pathogens that preferentially infect human monocytes. As such, understanding how the host responds to infection with these organisms is paramount in detecting and combating human disease. We have compared the ability of fully virulent strains of each pathogen and their non-pathogenic near neighbors to enter and survive inside the human monocytic cell line THP-1 and have quantified the cellular response to infection with the goal of identifying both unique and common host response patterns. We expanded the scope of these studies to include experiments with pathogenic and non-pathogenic strains of Y. pestis, the causative agent of plague. Nonpathogenic strains of each organism were impaired in their ability to survive intracellularly compared with their pathogenic counterparts. Furthermore, infection of THP-1 cells with pathogenic strains of Y. pestis and F. tularensis resulted in marked increases in the secretion of the inflammatory chemokines IL-8, RANTES, and MIP-1{beta}. In contrast, B. melitensis infection failed to elicit any significant increases in a panel of cytokines tested. These differences may underscore distinct strategies in pathogenic mechanisms employed by these pathogens.

  11. New Insight into Biofilm Formation Ability, the Presence of Virulence Genes and Probiotic Potential of Enterococcus sp. Dairy Isolates

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    Nikola Popović

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available Enterococci have controversial status due to their emerging role in nosocomial infections and transmission of antibiotic resistance genes, while some enterococci strains are used as probiotics for humans and animals and starter cultures in dairy industry. In order to improve our understanding of factors involved in the safe use of enterococci as potential probiotics, the antibiotic susceptibility, virulence and probiotic traits of 75 dairy enterococci isolates belonging to Enterococcus durans (50, En. faecium (15, En. faecalis (6, En. italicus (3, and En. hirae (1 were evaluated. The results revealed that ciprofloxacin resistance and biofilm formation are correlated with isolates originated from Golija mountain (Serbia, while gelatinase activity was more common in isolates from Prigorje region (Croatia, pointing to uncontrolled use of antibiotics and anthropogenic impact on dairy products' microbiota in these regions. The virulence genes were sporadically present in 13 selected dairy enterococci isolates. Interestingly, biofilm formation was correlated with higher ability of strains to reduce the adhesion of E. coli and Salmonella Enteritidis to HT29-MTX cells. To our knowledge this is the first study reporting the presence of the esp gene (previously correlated with pathogenesis in dairy enterococci isolates, mostly associated with the genes involved in adhesion property. Hence, the results of this study revealed that the virulence genes are sporadically present in dairy isolates and more correlated to adhesion properties and biofilm formation, implicating their role in gut colonization rather than to the virulence traits.

  12. Characterization of Yersinia enterocolitica strains potentially virulent for humans and animals in river water.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Terech-Majewska, E; Pajdak, J; Platt-Samoraj, A; Szczerba-Turek, A; Bancerz-Kisiel, A; Grabowska, K

    2016-08-01

    The aim of this study was to isolate and identify potentially pathogenic strains of Yersinia enterocolitica in water samples collected from the upstream section of the Drwęca River in Poland. Thirty-nine water samples were collected. Strains were isolated, identified with the use of the API(®) 20E test kit (Biomerieux, Marcy l'Etoile, France) at 37°C, serotyped and subjected to a molecular analysis. Multiplex PCR was carried out to amplify three virulence genes: ail, ystA and ystB. Fragments of ail and ystA genes were not identified in the genetic material of the analysed strains. The ystB gene was identified in four strains. Yersinia enterocolitica strains of biotype 1A, which contain the ystB gene, may cause gastrointestinal problems. In our study, Y. enterocolitica strains of biotype 1A/ystB with serotypes 0 : 3, 0 : 5 and 0 : 8 were identified in samples collected from the Drwęca River which flows through the areas protected by Natura 2000, one of the largest networks of nature conservation areas in the European Union. The presence of Y. enterocolitica in the Drwęca River indicates that the analysed bacteria colonize natural water bodies. Most research focuses on food or sewage as a source of Y. enterocolitica infections. Little is known about the occurrence of this pathogen in natural waters. Our results show that natural waters are also a potential threat to human and animal health. © 2016 The Society for Applied Microbiology.

  13. Digital memory encoding in Chinese dyscalculia: An event-related potential study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Enguo; Qin, Shutao; Chang, MengYan; Zhu, Xiangru

    2014-10-22

    This study reports the neurophysiological and behavioral correlates of digital memory encoding features in Chinese individuals with and without dyscalculia. Eighteen children with dyscalculia (ages 11.5-13.5) and 18 matched controls were tested, and their event-related potentials (ERPs) were digitally recorded simultaneously with behavioral measures. The results showed that both groups had a significant Dm effect, and this effect was greater in the control group. In the 300-400-ms, 400-500-ms, and 600-700-ms processing stages, both groups showed significant differences of digital memory encoding in the frontal, central, and parietal regions. In the 500-600-ms period, the Dm effect in the control group was significantly greater than that in the dyscalculia group only in the parietal region. These results suggest that individuals with dyscalculia exhibit impaired digital memory encoding and deficits in psychological resource allocation. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  14. Data in support of quantitative proteomics to identify potential virulence regulators in Paracoccidioides brasiliensis isolates

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    Alexandre Keiji Tashima

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available Paracoccidioides genus are the etiologic agents of paracoccidioidomycosis (PCM, a systemic mycosis endemic in Latin America. Few virulence factors have been identified in these fungi. This paper describes support data from the quantitative proteomics of Paracoccidioides brasiliensis attenuated and virulent isolates [1]. The protein compositions of two isolates of the Pb18 strain showing distinct infection profiles were quantitatively assessed by stable isotopic dimethyl labeling and proteomic analysis. The mass spectrometry and the analysis dataset have been deposited to the ProteomeXchange Consortium via the PRIDE partner repository with identifier PXD000804.

  15. Comparative profiling of the transcriptional response to iron restriction in six serotypes of Actinobacillus pleuropneumoniae with different virulence potential

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Angen Øystein

    2010-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Comparative analysis of gene expression among serotypes within a species can provide valuable information on important differences between related genomes. For the pig lung pathogen Actinobacillus pleuropneumoniae, 15 serotypes with a considerable variation in virulence potential and immunogenicity have been identified. This serotypic diversity can only partly be explained by amount of capsule and differences in the RTX toxin genes in their genomes. Iron acquisition in vivo is an important bacterial function and in pathogenic bacteria, iron-limitation is often a signal for the induction of virulence genes. We used a pan-genomic microarray to study the transcriptional response to iron restriction in vitro in six serotypes of A. pleuropneumoniae (1, 2, 3, 5b, 6, and 7, representing at least two levels of virulence. Results In total, 45 genes were significantly (p A. pleuropneumoniae was the up-regulation of a putative cirA-like siderophore in all six serotypes. Three genes, recently described in A. pleuropneumoniae as possibly coding for haemoglobin-haptoglobin binding proteins, displayed significant serotype related up-regulation to iron limitation. For all three genes, the expression appeared at its lowest in serotype 3, which is generally considered one of the least virulent serotypes of A. pleuropneumoniae. The three genes share homology with the hmbR haemoglobin receptor of Neisseria meningitidis, a possible virulence factor which contributes to bacterial survival in rats. Conclusions By comparative analysis of gene expression among 6 different serotypes of A. pleuropneumoniae we identified a common set of presumably essential core genes, involved in iron regulation. The results support and expand previous observations concerning the identification of new potential iron acquisition systems in A. pleuropneumoniae, showing that this bacterium has evolved several strategies for scavenging the limited iron resources of the

  16. Profiling antibody responses to infections by Chlamydia abortus enables identification of potential virulence factors and candidates for serodiagnosis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Forsbach-Birk, Vera; Foddis, Corinna; Simnacher, Ulrike; Wilkat, Max; Longbottom, David; Walder, Gernot; Benesch, Christiane; Ganter, Martin; Sachse, Konrad; Essig, Andreas

    2013-01-01

    Enzootic abortion of ewes (EAE) due to infection with the obligate intracellular pathogen Chlamydia (C.) abortus is an important zoonosis leading to considerable economic loss to agriculture worldwide. The pathogen can be transmitted to humans and may lead to serious infection in pregnant women. Knowledge about epidemiology, clinical course and transmission to humans is hampered by the lack of reliable diagnostic tools. Immunoreactive proteins, which are expressed in infected animals and humans, may serve as novel candidates for diagnostic marker proteins and represent putative virulence factors. In order to broaden the spectrum of immunogenic C. abortus proteins we applied 2D immunoblot analysis and screening of an expression library using human and animal sera. We have identified 48 immunoreactive proteins representing potential diagnostic markers and also putative virulence factors, such as CAB080 (homologue of the "macrophage infectivity potentiator", MIP), CAB167 (homologue of the "translocated actin recruitment protein", TARP), CAB712 (homologue of the "chlamydial protease-like activity factor", CPAF), CAB776 (homologue of the "Polymorphic membrane protein D", PmpD), and the "hypothetical proteins" CAB063, CAB408 and CAB821, which are predicted to be type III secreted. We selected two putative virulence factors for further characterization, i.e. CAB080 (cMIP) and CAB063, and studied their expression profiles at transcript and protein levels. Analysis of the subcellular localization of both proteins throughout the developmental cycle revealed CAB063 being the first C. abortus protein shown to be translocated to the host cell nucleus.

  17. Profiling antibody responses to infections by Chlamydia abortus enables identification of potential virulence factors and candidates for serodiagnosis.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vera Forsbach-Birk

    Full Text Available Enzootic abortion of ewes (EAE due to infection with the obligate intracellular pathogen Chlamydia (C. abortus is an important zoonosis leading to considerable economic loss to agriculture worldwide. The pathogen can be transmitted to humans and may lead to serious infection in pregnant women. Knowledge about epidemiology, clinical course and transmission to humans is hampered by the lack of reliable diagnostic tools. Immunoreactive proteins, which are expressed in infected animals and humans, may serve as novel candidates for diagnostic marker proteins and represent putative virulence factors. In order to broaden the spectrum of immunogenic C. abortus proteins we applied 2D immunoblot analysis and screening of an expression library using human and animal sera. We have identified 48 immunoreactive proteins representing potential diagnostic markers and also putative virulence factors, such as CAB080 (homologue of the "macrophage infectivity potentiator", MIP, CAB167 (homologue of the "translocated actin recruitment protein", TARP, CAB712 (homologue of the "chlamydial protease-like activity factor", CPAF, CAB776 (homologue of the "Polymorphic membrane protein D", PmpD, and the "hypothetical proteins" CAB063, CAB408 and CAB821, which are predicted to be type III secreted. We selected two putative virulence factors for further characterization, i.e. CAB080 (cMIP and CAB063, and studied their expression profiles at transcript and protein levels. Analysis of the subcellular localization of both proteins throughout the developmental cycle revealed CAB063 being the first C. abortus protein shown to be translocated to the host cell nucleus.

  18. Molecular characteristics and virulence potential of Listeria monocytogenes isolates from Chinese food systems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Jianshun; Luo, Xiaokai; Jiang, Lingli; Jin, Peijie; Wei, Wei; Liu, Dongyou; Fang, Weihuan

    2009-02-01

    In this study, we examined Listeria monocytogenes isolates from Chinese food sources in an attempt to gain further insights on the molecular characteristics and virulence potential of this important foodborne pathogen. Of the 88 L. monocytogenes food isolates recovered, 42 (47.7%) were of serovars 1/2a or 3a; 23 (26.1%) of serovars 1/2b or 3b; 15 (17.0%) of 1/2c or 3c; 6 (6.8%) of serovars 4b, 4d or 4e; and 2 (2.2%) of serovars 4a or 4c. In contrast to inlAB locus conserved in all serovars, internalin cluster between ascB and dapE varies with different serovars, with inlC2DE, inlGC2DE and inlGHE predominantly in serovars 1/2b or 4b, serovar 1/2a and serovar 1/2c. While inlF existed in all the inlGHE- and inlGC2DE-containing isolates but 17.4% of those having inlC2DE, lmo2026 existed in all the inlGHE-containing isolates but 20.0% of those bearing inlGC2DE, suggesting that inlF might have co-evolved with inlGC2DE and inlGHE while lmo2026 with inlGHE only. With the exception of serovar 4a isolate, most serovar isolates demonstrated remarkable ability to form plaques on L929 cells and produced significant mouse mortality irrespective of the internalin gene organization and whether an intact actA gene is present or not. These results indicate that majority of these food isolates may have the potential to cause human diseases if ingested via contaminated foods. Given that serovar 4b accounts for nearly half of human clinical listeriosis cases documented, the relative low proportion of serovar 4b food isolates suggests that this serovar is probably more tolerant of the adverse conditions in the host's stomach and/or more efficient in entering host cells than serovars 1/2a, 1/2b and 1/2c.

  19. Differentiation of the virulence potential of Campylobacter jejuni strains by use of gene transcription analysis and a caco-2 assay

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Poli, Vanessa Fadanelli Schoenardie; Thorsen, Line; Olesen, Inger

    2012-01-01

    properties were evaluated by analyzing transcriptions of the virulence genes cdtB, ciaB, cadF and the stress associated genes clpP, htrB using reverse transcription quantitative PCR (RT-qPCR) and by the ability of the C. jejuni strains to adhere to and invade Caco-2 cells. Similar cell survival and no growth...... gene, cipA between DFVF1099 and NCTC11168 resulting in a 14 amino acid deletion and 28 amino acid addition at the N and C terminal ends respectively of the CipA protein of DFVF1099. In contrast to DFVF1099, strains NCTC1168 and TB1048 were able to invade Caco-2 cells. Invasion ability was not affected...... expression of C. jejuni. The clinical strains appeared to be more virulent than the chicken isolate as measured by the Caco-2 invasion assay which could be due to differences in CipA functionality. The RT-qPCR analysis and Caco-2 assay showed to be useful tools for differentiating virulence potentials...

  20. Genes that encodes NAGT, MIF1 and MIF2 are not virulence factors for kala-azar caused by Leishmania infantum

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    Bruno Guedes Alcoforado Aguiar

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available Introduction Kala-azar is a disease resulting from infection by Leishmania donovani and Leishmania infantum. Most patients with the disease exhibit prolonged fever, wasting, anemia and hepatosplenomegaly without complications. However, some patients develop severe disease with hemorrhagic manifestations, bacterial infections, jaundice, and edema dyspnea, among other symptoms, followed by death. Among the parasite molecules that might influence the disease severity are the macrophage migration inhibitory factor-like proteins (MIF1 and MIF2 and N-acetylglucosamine-1-phosphotransferase (NAGT, which act in the first step of protein N-glycosylation. This study aimed to determine whether MIF1, MIF2 and NAGT are virulence factors for severe kala-azar. Methods To determine the parasite genotype in kala-azar patients from Northeastern Brazil, we sequenced the NAGT genes of L. infantum from 68 patients as well as the MIF1 and MIF2 genes from 76 different subjects with diverse clinical manifestations. After polymerase chain reaction (PCR, the fragments were sequenced, followed by polymorphism identification. Results The nucleotide sequencing of the 144 amplicons revealed the absence of genetic variability of the NAGT, MIF1 and MIF2 genes between the isolates. The conservation of these genes suggests that the clinical variability of kala-azar does not depend upon these genes. Additionally, this conservation suggests that these genes may be critical for parasite survival. Conclusions NAGT, MIF1 and MIF2 do not alter the severity of kala-azar. NAGT, MIF1 and MIF2 are highly conserved among different isolates of identical species and exhibit potential for use in phylogenetic inferences or molecular diagnosis.

  1. Single Nucleotide Polymorphisms in Regulator-Encoding Genes Have an Additive Effect on Virulence Gene Expression in a Vibrio cholerae Clinical Isolate.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carignan, Bailey M; Brumfield, Kyle D; Son, Mike S

    2016-01-01

    Vibrio cholerae is the etiological agent of the infectious disease cholera, which is characterized by vomiting and severe watery diarrhea. Recently, V. cholerae clinical isolates have demonstrated increased virulence capabilities, causing more severe symptoms with a much higher rate of disease progression than previously observed. We have identified single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in four virulence-regulatory genes (hapR, hns, luxO, and vieA) of a hypervirulent V. cholerae clinical isolate, MQ1795. Herein, all SNPs and SNP combinations of interest were introduced into the prototypical El Tor reference strain N16961, and the effects on the production of numerous virulence-related factors, including cholera toxin (CT), the toxin-coregulated pilus (TCP), and ToxT, were analyzed. Our data show that triple-SNP (hapR hns luxO and hns luxO vieA) and quadruple-SNP combinations produced the greatest increases in CT, TCP, and ToxT production. The hns and hns luxO SNP combinations were sufficient for increased TCP and ToxT production. Notably, the hns luxO vieA triple-SNP combination strain produced TCP and ToxT levels similar to those of MQ1795. Certain SNP combinations (hapR and hapR vieA) had the opposite effect on CT, TCP, and ToxT expression. Interestingly, the hns vieA double-SNP combination strain increased TCP production while decreasing CT production. Our findings suggest that SNPs identified in the four regulatory genes, in various combinations, are associated with increased virulence capabilities observed in V. cholerae clinical isolates. These studies provide insight into the evolution of highly virulent strains. IMPORTANCE Cholera, an infectious disease of the small intestine caused by the aquatic bacterium Vibrio cholerae, often results in vomiting and acute watery diarrhea. If left untreated or if the response is too slow, the symptoms can quickly lead to extreme dehydration and ultimately death of the patient. Recent anecdotal evidence of cholera

  2. Virulence-related genes, adhesion and invasion of some Yersinia enterocolitica-like strains suggests its pathogenic potential.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Imori, Priscilla F M; Passaglia, Jaqueline; Souza, Roberto A; Rocha, Lenaldo B; Falcão, Juliana P

    2017-03-01

    Yersina enterocolitica-like species have not been extensively studied regarding its pathogenic potential. This work aimed to assess the pathogenic potential of some Y. enterocolitica-like strains by evaluating the presence of virulence-related genes by PCR and their ability to adhere to and invade Caco-2 and HEp-2 cells. A total of 50 Y. frederiksenii, 55 Y. intermedia and 13 Y. kristensenii strains were studied. The strains contained the following genes: Y. frederiksenii, fepA(44%), fes(44%) and ystB(18%); Y. intermedia, ail(53%), fepA (35%), fepD(2%), fes(97%), hreP(2%), ystB(2%) and tccC(35%); Y. kristensenii, ail(62%), ystB(23%), fepA(77%), fepD(54%), fes(54%) and hreP(77%). Generally, the Y. enterocolitica-like strains had a reduced ability to adhere to and invade mammalian cells compared to the highly pathogenic Y. enterocolitica 8081. However, Y. kristensenii FCF410 and Y. frederiksenii FCF461 presented high invasion potentials in Caco-2 cells after five days of pre-incubation increased by 45- and 7.2-fold compared to Y. enterocolitica 8081, respectively; but, the ail gene was not detected in these strains. The presence of virulence-related genes in some of the Y. enterocolitica-like strains indicated their possible pathogenic potential. Moreover, the results suggest the existence of alternative virulence mechanisms and that the pathogenicity of Y. kristensenii and Y. frederiksenii may be strain-dependent. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  3. VdCYC8, encoding CYC8 glucose repression mediator protein, is required for microsclerotia formation and full virulence in Verticillium dahliae

    Science.gov (United States)

    Verticillium dahliae is the primary causal agent for Verticillium wilt disease on a diverse array of economically important crops, including cotton. In previous research, we screened a T-DNA insertional mutant library of the highly virulent isolate Vd080 derived from cotton. In this study, the targ...

  4. Carbon nanoparticles as detection labels in antibody microarrays. Detection of genes encoding virulence factors in Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Noguera, P.S.; Posthuma-Trumpie, G.A.; Tuil, Van M.; Wal, van der F.J.; Boer, De A.; Moers, A.P.H.A.; Amerongen, Van A.

    2011-01-01

    The present study demonstrates that carbon nanoparticles (CNPs) can be used as labels in microarrays. CNPs were used in nucleic acid microarray immunoassays (NAMIAs) for the detection of different Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli (STEC) virulence factors: four genes specific for STEC (vt1,

  5. ICESag37, a Novel Integrative and Conjugative Element Carrying Antimicrobial Resistance Genes and Potential Virulence Factors in Streptococcus agalactiae.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhou, Kaixin; Xie, Lianyan; Han, Lizhong; Guo, Xiaokui; Wang, Yong; Sun, Jingyong

    2017-01-01

    ICE Sag37 , a novel integrative and conjugative element carrying multidrug resistance and potential virulence factors, was characterized in a clinical isolate of Streptococcus agalactiae . Two clinical strains of S. agalactiae , Sag37 and Sag158, were isolated from blood samples of new-borns with bacteremia. Sag37 was highly resistant to erythromycin and tetracycline, and susceptible to levofloxacin and penicillin, while Sag158 was resistant to tetracycline and levofloxacin, and susceptible to erythromycin. Transfer experiments were performed and selection was carried out with suitable antibiotic concentrations. Through mating experiments, the erythromycin resistance gene was found to be transferable from Sag37 to Sag158. Sma I-PFGE revealed a new Sma I fragment, confirming the transfer of the fragment containing the erythromycin resistance gene. Whole genome sequencing and sequence analysis revealed a mobile element, ICE Sag37 , which was characterized using several molecular methods and in silico analyses. ICE Sag37 was excised to generate a covalent circular intermediate, which was transferable to S. agalactiae . Inverse PCR was performed to detect the circular form. A serine family integrase mediated its chromosomal integration into rumA , which is a known hotspot for the integration of streptococcal ICEs. The integration site was confirmed using PCR. ICE Sag37 carried genes for resistance to multiple antibiotics, including erythromycin [ erm(B) ], tetracycline [ tet(O) ], and aminoglycosides [ aadE, aphA , and ant(6) ]. Potential virulence factors, including a two-component signal transduction system ( nisK/nisR ), were also observed in ICE Sag37 . S1-PFGE analysis ruled out the existence of plasmids. ICE Sag37 is the first ICE Sa2603 family-like element identified in S. agalactiae carrying both resistance and potential virulence determinants. It might act as a vehicle for the dissemination of multidrug resistance and pathogenicity among S. agalactiae .

  6. Biocontrol Potential of Steinernema thermophilum and Its Symbiont Xenorhabdus indica Against Lepidopteran Pests: Virulence to Egg and Larval Stages.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kalia, Vinay; Sharma, Garima; Shapiro-Ilan, David I; Ganguly, Sudershan

    2014-03-01

    Under laboratory conditions, the biocontrol potential of Steinernema thermophilum was tested against eggs and larval stages of two important lepidopteran insect pests, Helicoverpa armigera and Spodoptera litura (polyphagous pests), as well as Galleria mellonella (used as a model host). In terms of host susceptibility of lepidopteran larvae to S. thermophilum, based on the LC50 36 hr after treatment, G. mellonella (LC50 = 16.28 IJ/larva) was found to be more susceptible than S. litura (LC50 = 85 IJ/larva), whereas neither host was found to be significantly different from H. armigera (LC50 = 54.68 IJ/larva). In addition to virulence to the larval stages, ovicidal activity up to 84% was observed at 200 IJ/50 and 100 eggs of H. armigera and S. litura, respectively. To our knowledge this is the first report of entomopathogenic nematode pathogenicity to lepidopteran eggs. Production of infective juvenile (IJ) nematodes/insect larva was also measured and found to be positively correlated with rate of IJ for H. armigera (r = 0.990), S. litura (r = 0.892), as well as G. mellonella (r = 0.834). Both Phase I and Phase II of symbiotic bacteria Xenorhabdus indica were tested separately against neonates of H. armigera and S. litura by feeding assays and found to be virulent to the target pests; phase variation did not affect the level of virulence. Thus S. thermophilum as well as the nematode's symbiotic bacteria applied separately have the potential to be developed as biocontrol agents for key lepidopteran pests.

  7. Profiling Antibody Responses to Infections by Chlamydia abortus Enables Identification of Potential Virulence Factors and Candidates for Serodiagnosis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Forsbach-Birk, Vera; Foddis, Corinna; Simnacher, Ulrike; Wilkat, Max; Longbottom, David; Walder, Gernot; Benesch, Christiane; Ganter, Martin; Sachse, Konrad; Essig, Andreas

    2013-01-01

    Enzootic abortion of ewes (EAE) due to infection with the obligate intracellular pathogen Chlamydia (C.) abortus is an important zoonosis leading to considerable economic loss to agriculture worldwide. The pathogen can be transmitted to humans and may lead to serious infection in pregnant women. Knowledge about epidemiology, clinical course and transmission to humans is hampered by the lack of reliable diagnostic tools. Immunoreactive proteins, which are expressed in infected animals and humans, may serve as novel candidates for diagnostic marker proteins and represent putative virulence factors. In order to broaden the spectrum of immunogenic C. abortus proteins we applied 2D immunoblot analysis and screening of an expression library using human and animal sera. We have identified 48 immunoreactive proteins representing potential diagnostic markers and also putative virulence factors, such as CAB080 (homologue of the “macrophage infectivity potentiator”, MIP), CAB167 (homologue of the “translocated actin recruitment protein”, TARP), CAB712 (homologue of the “chlamydial protease-like activity factor”, CPAF), CAB776 (homologue of the “Polymorphic membrane protein D”, PmpD), and the “hypothetical proteins” CAB063, CAB408 and CAB821, which are predicted to be type III secreted. We selected two putative virulence factors for further characterization, i.e. CAB080 (cMIP) and CAB063, and studied their expression profiles at transcript and protein levels. Analysis of the subcellular localization of both proteins throughout the developmental cycle revealed CAB063 being the first C. abortus protein shown to be translocated to the host cell nucleus. PMID:24260366

  8. Olfactory short-term memory encoding and maintenance - an event-related potential study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lenk, Steffen; Bluschke, Annet; Beste, Christian; Iannilli, Emilia; Rößner, Veit; Hummel, Thomas; Bender, Stephan

    2014-09-01

    This study examined whether the memory encoding and short term maintenance of olfactory stimuli is associated with neurophysiological activation patterns which parallel those described for sensory modalities such as vision and auditory. We examined olfactory event-related potentials in an olfactory change detection task in twenty-four healthy adults and compared the measured activation to that found during passive olfactory stimulation. During the early olfactory post-processing phase, we found a sustained negativity over bilateral frontotemporal areas in the passive perception condition which was enhanced in the active memory task. There was no significant lateralization in either experimental condition. During the maintenance interval at the end of the delay period, we still found sustained activation over bilateral frontotemporal areas which was more negative in trials with correct - as compared to incorrect - behavioural responses. This was complemented by a general significantly stronger frontocentral activation. Summarizing, we were able to show that olfactory short term memory involves a parallel sequence of activation as found in other sensory modalities. In addition to olfactory-specific frontotemporal activations in the memory encoding phase, we found slow cortical potentials over frontocentral areas during the memory maintenance phase indicating the activation of a supramodal memory maintenance system. These findings could represent the neurophysiological underpinning of the 'olfactory flacon', the olfactory counter-part to the visual sketchpad and phonological loop embedded in Baddeley's working memory model. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  9. Genomic Insights and Its Comparative Analysis with Yersinia enterocolitica Reveals the Potential Virulence Determinants and Further Pathogenicity for Foodborne Outbreaks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gnanasekaran, Gopalsamy; Na, Eun Jung; Chung, Han Young; Kim, Suyeon; Kim, You-Tae; Kwak, Woori; Kim, Heebal; Ryu, Sangryeol; Choi, Sang Ho; Lee, Ju-Hoon

    2017-02-28

    Yersinia enterocolitica is a well-known foodborne pathogen causing gastrointestinal infections worldwide. The strain Y. enterocolitica FORC_002 was isolated from the gill of flatfish (plaice) and its genome was sequenced. The genomic DNA consists of 4,837,317 bp with a GC content of 47.1%, and is predicted to contain 4,221 open reading frames, 81 tRNA genes, and 26 rRNA genes. Interestingly, genomic analysis revealed pathogenesis and host immune evasion-associated genes encoding guanylate cyclase (Yst), invasin (Ail and Inv), outer membrane protein (Yops), autotransporter adhesin A (YadA), RTX-like toxins, and a type III secretion system. In particular, guanylate cyclase is a heat-stable enterotoxin causing Yersinia -associated diarrhea, and RTX-like toxins are responsible for attachment to integrin on the target cell for cytotoxic action. This genome can be used to identify virulence factors that can be applied for the development of novel biomarkers for the rapid detection of this pathogen in foods.

  10. Surface antigens and potential virulence factors from parasites detected by comparative genomics of perfect amino acid repeats

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Adler Joël

    2007-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Many parasitic organisms, eukaryotes as well as bacteria, possess surface antigens with amino acid repeats. Making up the interface between host and pathogen such repetitive proteins may be virulence factors involved in immune evasion or cytoadherence. They find immunological applications in serodiagnostics and vaccine development. Here we use proteins which contain perfect repeats as a basis for comparative genomics between parasitic and free-living organisms. Results We have developed Reptile http://reptile.unibe.ch, a program for proteome-wide probabilistic description of perfect repeats in proteins. Parasite proteomes exhibited a large variance regarding the proportion of repeat-containing proteins. Interestingly, there was a good correlation between the percentage of highly repetitive proteins and mean protein length in parasite proteomes, but not at all in the proteomes of free-living eukaryotes. Reptile combined with programs for the prediction of transmembrane domains and GPI-anchoring resulted in an effective tool for in silico identification of potential surface antigens and virulence factors from parasites. Conclusion Systemic surveys for perfect amino acid repeats allowed basic comparisons between free-living and parasitic organisms that were directly applicable to predict proteins of serological and parasitological importance. An on-line tool is available at http://genomics.unibe.ch/dora.

  11. Stenotrophomonas maltophilia isolated from patients exposed to invasive devices in a university hospital in Argentina: molecular typing, susceptibility and detection of potential virulence factors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alcaraz, Eliana; Garcia, Carlos; Papalia, Mariana; Vay, Carlos; Friedman, Laura; Passerini de Rossi, Beatriz

    2018-05-25

    The aim of this work was to investigate the presence of selected potential virulence factors, susceptibility and clonal relatedness among 63 Stenotrophomonas maltophilia isolates recovered from patients exposed to invasive devices in a university hospital in Argentina between January 2004 and August 2012. Genetic relatedness was assessed by enterobacterial repetitive intergenic consensus PCR (ERIC-PCR) and pulsed-field gel electrophoresis (PFGE). Isolates were characterized by antimicrobial resistance, the presence and/or expression of potential virulence determinants, and virulence in the Galleria mellonella model.Results/Key findings. ERIC-PCR generated 52 fingerprints, and PFGE added another pattern. Resistance to trimethoprim-sulfamethoxazole (6.35 %), levofloxacin (9.52 %) and ciprofloxacin (23.80 %) was detected. All isolates were susceptible to minocycline. All isolates were lipase, protease and siderophore producers, while all but Sm61 formed biofilms. However, 11/63 isolates did not amplify the major extracellular protease-coding gene (stmPr1). Sm61 is an stmPr1-negative isolate, and showed (as did Sm13 and the reference strain K279a) strong proteolysis and siderophore production, and high resistance to hydrogen peroxide. The three isolates were virulent in the G. mellonella model, while Sm10, a low-resistance hydrogen peroxide stmPr1-negative isolate, and weak proteolysis and siderophore producer, was not virulent. This is the first epidemiological study of the clonal relatedness of S. maltophilia clinical isolates in Argentina. Great genomic diversity was observed, and only two small clusters of related S. maltophilia types were found. Minocycline and trimethoprim-sulfamethoxazole were the most active agents. S. maltophilia virulence in the G. mellonella model is multifactorial, and further studies are needed to elucidate the role of each potential virulence factor.

  12. Genetic diversity and virulence potential of Staphylococcus aureus isolates from raw and processed food commodities in Shanghai.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Song, Minghui; Bai, Yalong; Xu, Jie; Carter, Michelle Qiu; Shi, Chunlei; Shi, Xianming

    2015-02-16

    The risk of zoonotic transmission to humans highlights the need to understand the molecular ecology of Staphylococcus aureus in foods. In this study, 142 S. aureus isolates obtained from various raw and processed foods from Shanghai, China were characterized to determine their genetic diversity and virulence gene content. A total of 16 clonal complexes (CCs), 34 staphylococcal protein A (spa) types, and 6 accessory gene regulator (agr) allelic groups were identified and analyzed among the 142 S. aureus isolates. Among these, the genotype CC188-t189-agr Ι was the most prevalent, constituting 28.2% of all isolates. The presence of virulence genes encoding 20 staphylococcal enterotoxins (se), toxic shock syndrome toxin (tsst1), exfoliative toxins (eta, etb, and etd), Panton-Valentine leukocidin (lukS-PV and lukF-PV), as well as methicillin resistance gene (mecA), was determined by PCR. Of these S. aureus isolates, 72.5% harbored toxin genes, in which the most frequent toxin gene was sep (43.7%), followed by sej (26.1%) and pvl (21.1%). In contrast, see, ses, set, tsst1, etb, and etd were not found in any of the isolates tested. Eight S. aureus isolates (5.6%, 8/142), seven from raw milk and one from frozen food, were mecA positive and resistant to oxacillin, thus were MRSA. The 142 S. aureus isolates displayed 52 different toxin gene profiles. Although no direct association was found between toxin gene profile and the S. aureus genotype, the isolates belonging to CC5, CC9, CC20, CC50, and CC72 clonal lineages in general carried more toxin genes (>5) compared with the isolates in other CCs. It was also revealed that raw milk and raw meat were the major sources of isolates containing multiple toxin genes. S. aureus isolates from food that were genetically highly related, displayed diverse toxin gene profiles, implying the significant role of horizontal gene transfer in the emergence of highly toxigenic S. aureus isolates. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights

  13. Potential virulence factors of bacteria associated with tail fan necrosis in the spiny lobster, Jasus edwardsii.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zha, H; Jeffs, A; Dong, Y; Lewis, G

    2018-05-01

    Tail fan necrosis (TFN) is a common condition found in commercially exploited spiny lobsters that greatly diminishes their commercial value. Bacteria possessing proteolytic, chitinolytic and lipolytic capabilities were associated with TFN in spiny lobsters, Jasus edwardsii. In this study, 69 bacterial isolates exhibiting all the three enzymatic capabilities from the haemolymph and tail fans of J. edwardsii with and without TFN were further characterized and compared, including morphology, biofilm formation, antimicrobial activity, antimicrobial resistance, and production of siderophores, melanin and ammonia. The genomic patterns of the most common Vibrio crassostreae isolates were also compared between TFN-affected and unaffected lobsters. Biofilm formation was stronger in bacterial isolates from both haemolymph and tail fans of TFN-affected lobsters compared to those from the unaffected lobsters, while melanin production and siderophore production were stronger in the isolates from tail fans of lobsters with TFN. By contrast, the other characteristics of isolates were similar in lobsters with and without TFN. The Vib. crassostreae isolates from the affected lobsters had similar genomic patterns. Overall, the results indicate that in addition to proteolytic, chitinolytic and lipolytic activities, the bacteria associated with TFN commonly have enhanced activity of important virulence factors, including biofilm formation, melanin production and siderophore production. © 2018 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  14. Insertional inactivation of a chromosomal locus that modulates expression of potential virulence determinants in Staphylococcus aureus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cheung, A L; Wolz, C; Yeaman, M R; Bayer, A S

    1995-06-01

    A single insertion of transposon Tn551 into a unique chromosomal locus of Staphylococcus aureus ISP479C has resulted in a pleiotropic effect on the expression of both extracellular and cell wall proteins. In particular, the expression of cell wall protein A and clumping activity with fibrinogen were rendered undetectable in the mutant 1E3 compared with the parent. The secretion of alpha-hemolysin in mutant 1E3 was modestly increased. Southern blot and phenotypic analyses indicated that this locus is distinct from agr, xpr, and sar, three previously described global regulatory loci. Transduction experiments demonstrated that the genotype associated with mutant 1E3 could be transferred back into the parental strain ISP479C. The transductant 1E3-2 displayed a phenotypic profile similar to that of the original mutant. Northern (RNA) blot studies showed that this locus may be involved in modulating target genes at the mRNA level. In the rabbit endocarditis model, there was a significant decrease in both the infectivity rate and intravegetation bacterial density with mutant 1E3 compared with the parent at an inoculum of 10(3) CFU. Since protein A and the fibrinogen-binding protein(s) are major surface proteins that may mediate bacterial adhesion to host tissues, this locus may be an important genetic element involved in the expression of virulence determinants in S. aureus.

  15. Encoding of faces and objects into visual working memory: an event-related brain potential study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meinhardt-Injac, Bozana; Persike, Malte; Berti, Stefan

    2013-09-11

    Visual working memory (VWM) is an important prerequisite for cognitive functions, but little is known on whether the general perceptual processing advantage for faces also applies to VWM processes. The aim of the present study was (a) to test whether there is a general advantage for face stimuli in VWM and (b) to unravel whether this advantage is related to early sensory processing stages. To address these questions, we compared encoding of faces and complex nonfacial objects into VWM within a combined behavioral and event-related brain potential (ERP) study. In detail, we tested whether the N170 ERP component - which is associated with face-specific holistic processing - is affected by memory load for faces or whether it might be involved in WM encoding of any complex object. Participants performed a same-different task with either face or watch stimuli and with two different levels of memory load. Behavioral measures show an advantage for faces on the level of VWM, mirrored in higher estimated VWM capacity (i.e. Cowan's K) for faces compared with watches. In the ERP, the N170 amplitude was enhanced for faces compared with watches. However, the N170 was not modulated by working memory load either for faces or for watches. In contrast, the P3b component was affected by memory load irrespective of the stimulus category. Taken together, the results suggest that the VWM advantage for faces is not reflected at the sensory stages of stimulus processing, but rather at later higher-level processes as reflected by the P3b component.

  16. Prevalence, Virulence Potential, and Antibiotic Susceptibility Profile of Listeria monocytogenes Isolated From Bovine Raw Milk Samples Obtained From Rajasthan, India.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sharma, Sanjita; Sharma, Vishnu; Dahiya, Dinesh Kumar; Khan, Aarif; Mathur, Manisha; Sharma, Amit

    2017-03-01

    Listeriosis is a serious foodborne disease of a global concern, and can effectively be controlled by a continuous surveillance of the virulent and multidrug-resistant strains of Listeria monocytogenes. This study was planned to investigate prevalence of L. monocytogenes in bovine raw milk samples. A total of 457 raw milk samples collected from 15 major cities in Rajasthan, India, were analyzed for the presence of L. monocytogenes by using standard microbiological and molecular methods. Five of the 457 samples screen tested positive for L. monocytogenes. Multiplex serotyping showed that 3/5 strains belonged to serotype 4b followed by one strain each to 1/2a and to 1/2c. Further virulence potential assessment indicated that all strains possessed inlA and inlC internalins, and, in addition, two strains also possessed the gene for inlB. All strains were positive for Listeriolysin O (LLO) and showed phosphatidylinositol-specific phospholipase C (PI-PLC) activity on an in vitro agar medium with variations in production levels among the strains. A good correlation between the in vitro pathogenicity test and the chick embryo test was observed, as the strains showing higher LLO and PI-PLC activity were found to be lethal to fertilized chick embryos. All strains were resistant to the majority of antibiotics and were designated as multidrug-resistant strains. However, these strains were susceptible to 9 of the 22 tested antibiotics. The maximum zone of inhibition (mm) and acceptable minimum inhibitory concentration were observed with azithromycin, and thus it could be the first choice of a treatment. Overall, the presence of multidrug-resistant L. monocytogenes strains in the raw milk of Rajasthan region is an indicator of public health hazard and highlighting the need of consumer awareness in place and implementation of stricter food safety regulations at all levels of milk production.

  17. A molecular study on the prevalence and virulence potential of Aeromonas spp. recovered from patients suffering from diarrhea in Israel.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yigal Senderovich

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Species of the genus Aeromonas are native inhabitants of aquatic environments and have recently been considered emerging human pathogens. Although the gastrointestinal tract is by far the most common anatomic site from which aeromonads are recovered, their role as etiologic agents of bacterial diarrhea is still disputed. Aeromonas-associated diarrhea is a phenomenon occurring worldwide; however, the exact prevalence of Aeromonas infections on a global scale is unknown. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: The prevalence and virulence potential of Aeromonas in patients suffering from diarrhea in Israel was studied using molecular methods. 1,033 diarrheal stools were sampled between April and September 2010 and Aeromonas species were identified in 17 (∼2% patients by sequencing the rpoD gene. Aeromonas species identity and abundance was: A. caviae (65%, A. veronii (29% and Aeromonas taiwanensis (6%. This is the first clinical record of A. taiwanensis as a diarrheal causative since its recent discovery from a wound infection in a patient in Taiwan. Most of the patients (77% from which Aeromonas species were isolated were negative for any other pathogens. The patients ranged from 1 to 92 years in age. Aeromonas isolates were found to possess different virulence-associated genes: ahpB (88%, pla/lip/lipH3/apl-1 (71%, act/hlyA/aerA (35%, alt (18%, ast (6%, fla (65%, lafA (41%, TTSS ascV (12%, TTSS ascF-ascG (12%, TTSS-dependent ADP-ribosylating toxins aexU (41% and aexT (6% in various combinations. Most of the identified strains were resistant to beta-lactam antibiotics but susceptible to third-generation cephalosporin antibiotics. CONCLUSIONS: Aeromonas may be a causative agent of diarrhea in patients in Israel and therefore should be included in routine bacteriological screenings.

  18. The Epstein-Barr virus encoded BART miRNAs potentiate tumor growth in vivo.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jin Qiu

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available The human herpes virus Epstein-Barr virus (EBV latently infects and drives the proliferation of B lymphocytes in vitro and is associated with several forms of lymphoma and carcinoma in vivo. The virus encodes ~30 miRNAs in the BART region, the function of most of which remains elusive. Here we have used a new mouse xenograft model of EBV driven carcinomagenesis to demonstrate that the BART miRNAs potentiate tumor growth and development in vivo. No effect was seen on invasion or metastasis, and the growth promoting activity was not seen in vitro. In vivo tumor growth was not associated with the expression of specific BART miRNAs but with up regulation of all the BART miRNAs, consistent with previous observations that all the BART miRNAs are highly expressed in all of the EBV associated cancers. Based on these observations, we suggest that deregulated expression of the BART miRNAs potentiates tumor growth and represents a general mechanism behind EBV associated oncogenesis.

  19. Chimeras taking shape: Potential functions of proteins encoded by chimeric RNA transcripts

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frenkel-Morgenstern, Milana; Lacroix, Vincent; Ezkurdia, Iakes; Levin, Yishai; Gabashvili, Alexandra; Prilusky, Jaime; del Pozo, Angela; Tress, Michael; Johnson, Rory; Guigo, Roderic; Valencia, Alfonso

    2012-01-01

    Chimeric RNAs comprise exons from two or more different genes and have the potential to encode novel proteins that alter cellular phenotypes. To date, numerous putative chimeric transcripts have been identified among the ESTs isolated from several organisms and using high throughput RNA sequencing. The few corresponding protein products that have been characterized mostly result from chromosomal translocations and are associated with cancer. Here, we systematically establish that some of the putative chimeric transcripts are genuinely expressed in human cells. Using high throughput RNA sequencing, mass spectrometry experimental data, and functional annotation, we studied 7424 putative human chimeric RNAs. We confirmed the expression of 175 chimeric RNAs in 16 human tissues, with an abundance varying from 0.06 to 17 RPKM (Reads Per Kilobase per Million mapped reads). We show that these chimeric RNAs are significantly more tissue-specific than non-chimeric transcripts. Moreover, we present evidence that chimeras tend to incorporate highly expressed genes. Despite the low expression level of most chimeric RNAs, we show that 12 novel chimeras are translated into proteins detectable in multiple shotgun mass spectrometry experiments. Furthermore, we confirm the expression of three novel chimeric proteins using targeted mass spectrometry. Finally, based on our functional annotation of exon organization and preserved domains, we discuss the potential features of chimeric proteins with illustrative examples and suggest that chimeras significantly exploit signal peptides and transmembrane domains, which can alter the cellular localization of cognate proteins. Taken together, these findings establish that some chimeric RNAs are translated into potentially functional proteins in humans. PMID:22588898

  20. Transient virulence of emerging pathogens.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bolker, Benjamin M; Nanda, Arjun; Shah, Dharmini

    2010-05-06

    Should emerging pathogens be unusually virulent? If so, why? Existing theories of virulence evolution based on a tradeoff between high transmission rates and long infectious periods imply that epidemic growth conditions will select for higher virulence, possibly leading to a transient peak in virulence near the beginning of an epidemic. This transient selection could lead to high virulence in emerging pathogens. Using a simple model of the epidemiological and evolutionary dynamics of emerging pathogens, along with rough estimates of parameters for pathogens such as severe acute respiratory syndrome, West Nile virus and myxomatosis, we estimated the potential magnitude and timing of such transient virulence peaks. Pathogens that are moderately evolvable, highly transmissible, and highly virulent at equilibrium could briefly double their virulence during an epidemic; thus, epidemic-phase selection could contribute significantly to the virulence of emerging pathogens. In order to further assess the potential significance of this mechanism, we bring together data from the literature for the shapes of tradeoff curves for several pathogens (myxomatosis, HIV, and a parasite of Daphnia) and the level of genetic variation for virulence for one (myxomatosis). We discuss the need for better data on tradeoff curves and genetic variance in order to evaluate the plausibility of various scenarios of virulence evolution.

  1. Association of clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeat (CRISPR) elements with specific serotypes and virulence potential of shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Toro, Magaly; Cao, Guojie; Ju, Wenting; Allard, Marc; Barrangou, Rodolphe; Zhao, Shaohua; Brown, Eric; Meng, Jianghong

    2014-02-01

    Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli (STEC) strains (n = 194) representing 43 serotypes and E. coli K-12 were examined for clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeat (CRISPR) arrays to study genetic relatedness among STEC serotypes. A subset of the strains (n = 81) was further analyzed for subtype I-E cas and virulence genes to determine a possible association of CRISPR elements with potential virulence. Four types of CRISPR arrays were identified. CRISPR1 and CRISPR2 were present in all strains tested; 1 strain also had both CRISPR3 and CRISPR4, whereas 193 strains displayed a short, combined array, CRISPR3-4. A total of 3,353 spacers were identified, representing 528 distinct spacers. The average length of a spacer was 32 bp. Approximately one-half of the spacers (54%) were unique and found mostly in strains of less common serotypes. Overall, CRISPR spacer contents correlated well with STEC serotypes, and identical arrays were shared between strains with the same H type (O26:H11, O103:H11, and O111:H11). There was no association identified between the presence of subtype I-E cas and virulence genes, but the total number of spacers had a negative correlation with potential pathogenicity (P CRISPR-cas system and potential virulence needs to be determined on a broader scale, and the biological link will need to be established.

  2. Microbial Diversity and Biochemical Potential Encoded by Thermal Spring Metagenomes Derived from the Kamchatka Peninsula

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bernd Wemheuer

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Volcanic regions contain a variety of environments suitable for extremophiles. This study was focused on assessing and exploiting the prokaryotic diversity of two microbial communities derived from different Kamchatkian thermal springs by metagenomic approaches. Samples were taken from a thermoacidophilic spring near the Mutnovsky Volcano and from a thermophilic spring in the Uzon Caldera. Environmental DNA for metagenomic analysis was isolated from collected sediment samples by direct cell lysis. The prokaryotic community composition was examined by analysis of archaeal and bacterial 16S rRNA genes. A total number of 1235 16S rRNA gene sequences were obtained and used for taxonomic classification. Most abundant in the samples were members of Thaumarchaeota, Thermotogae, and Proteobacteria. The Mutnovsky hot spring was dominated by the Terrestrial Hot Spring Group, Kosmotoga, and Acidithiobacillus. The Uzon Caldera was dominated by uncultured members of the Miscellaneous Crenarchaeotic Group and Enterobacteriaceae. The remaining 16S rRNA gene sequences belonged to the Aquificae, Dictyoglomi, Euryarchaeota, Korarchaeota, Thermodesulfobacteria, Firmicutes, and some potential new phyla. In addition, the recovered DNA was used for generation of metagenomic libraries, which were subsequently mined for genes encoding lipolytic and proteolytic enzymes. Three novel genes conferring lipolytic and one gene conferring proteolytic activity were identified.

  3. Differences in Virulence Markers between Helicobacter pylori Strains from Iraq and Those from Iran: Potential Importance of Regional Differences in H. pylori-Associated Disease▿

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hussein, Nawfal R.; Mohammadi, Marjan; Talebkhan, Yeganeh; Doraghi, Masoumeh; Letley, Darren P.; Muhammad, Merdan K.; Argent, Richard H.; Atherton, John C.

    2008-01-01

    Helicobacter pylori causes peptic ulceration and gastric adenocarcinoma; the latter is common in Iran but not in Iraq. We hypothesized that more virulent H. pylori strains may be found in Iran than in Iraq and so compared established and newly described virulence factors in strains from these countries. We studied 59 unselected dyspeptic patients from Iran and 49 from Iraq. cagA was found in similar proportions of strains from both countries (76% in Iran versus 71% in Iraq) and was significantly associated with peptic ulcer disease in Iraq (P ≤ 0.01) but not in Iran. cagA alleles encoding four or more tyrosine phosphorylation motifs were found in 12% of the Iranian strains but none of the Iraqi strains (P = 0.02). There were no significant differences in the vacA signal-, middle-, or intermediate-region types between Iranian and Iraqi strains. Among the strains from Iran, vacA genotypes showed no specific peptic ulcer associations, but among the strains from Iraq, vacA i1 strains were associated with gastric ulcer (P ≤ 0.02), mimicking their previously demonstrated association with gastric cancer in Iran. dupA was found in similar proportions of Iranian and Iraqi strains (38% and 32%, respectively) and was associated with peptic ulceration in Iraqi patients (P ≤ 0.01) but not Iranian patients. H. pylori strains from Iraq and Iran possess virulence factors similar to those in Western countries. The presence of cagA with more phosphorylation motifs in Iranian strains may contribute to the higher incidence of gastric cancer. However, the association between strain virulence markers and disease in Iraq but not Iran suggests that other host and environmental factors may be more important in the disease-prone Iranian population. PMID:18353934

  4. Biochemical, structural and molecular dynamics analyses of the potential virulence factor RipA from Yersinia pestis.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rodrigo Torres

    Full Text Available Human diseases are attributed in part to the ability of pathogens to evade the eukaryotic immune systems. A subset of these pathogens has developed mechanisms to survive in human macrophages. Yersinia pestis, the causative agent of the bubonic plague, is a predominately extracellular pathogen with the ability to survive and replicate intracellularly. A previous study has shown that a novel rip (required for intracellular proliferation operon (ripA, ripB and ripC is essential for replication and survival of Y. pestis in postactivated macrophages, by playing a role in lowering macrophage-produced nitric oxide (NO levels. A bioinformatics analysis indicates that the rip operon is conserved among a distally related subset of macrophage-residing pathogens, including Burkholderia and Salmonella species, and suggests that this previously uncharacterized pathway is also required for intracellular survival of these pathogens. The focus of this study is ripA, which encodes for a protein highly homologous to 4-hydroxybutyrate-CoA transferase; however, biochemical analysis suggests that RipA functions as a butyryl-CoA transferase. The 1.9 Å X-ray crystal structure reveals that RipA belongs to the class of Family I CoA transferases and exhibits a unique tetrameric state. Molecular dynamics simulations are consistent with RipA tetramer formation and suggest a possible gating mechanism for CoA binding mediated by Val227. Together, our structural characterization and molecular dynamic simulations offer insights into acyl-CoA specificity within the active site binding pocket, and support biochemical results that RipA is a butyryl-CoA transferase. We hypothesize that the end product of the rip operon is butyrate, a known anti-inflammatory, which has been shown to lower NO levels in macrophages. Thus, the results of this molecular study of Y. pestis RipA provide a structural platform for rational inhibitor design, which may lead to a greater understanding of the

  5. Gene Transcription and Virulence Potential of Listeria monocytogenes Strains After Exposure to Acidic and NaCl Stress

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Olesen, Inger; Vogensen, Finn Kvist; Jespersen, Lene

    2009-01-01

    transcription were observed both after exposure to shock (six genes) and after long-term adaptation to stress (18 genes). In the shock experiments, a transient induction of clpC and clpE was seen for both strains, while transient induction of sigB, inlA, and inlB was observed for strain 4140 only; actA was only...... induced in EGD-e after NaCl shock. The longterm stress experiments were included to imitate the stress conditions encountered by L. monocytogenes when present in food products. Long-term adaptation of EGD-e to acidic stress induced transcription of iap and repressed flaA, while genes related to stress......Gene transcription and virulence potential of two strains of Listeria monocytogenes, EGD-e and 4140, were compared by quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction and in a Caco-2 in vitro model after exposure to acidic (pH 5.5) and NaCl (4.5% w=v) stress. Strain-dependent differences in gene...

  6. Campylobacter fetus subspecies: Comparative genomics and prediction of potential virulence targets

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ali, Amjad; Soares, Siomar C.; Santos, Anderson R.

    2012-01-01

    . The potential candidate factors identified for attenuation and/or subunit vaccine development against C. fetus subspecies contain: nucleoside diphosphate kinase (Ndk), type IV secretion systems (T4SS), outer membrane proteins (OMP), substrate binding proteins CjaA and CjaC, surface array proteins, sap gene......, and cytolethal distending toxin (CDT). Significantly, many of those genes were found in genomic regions with signals of horizontal gene transfer and, therefore, predicted as putative pathogenicity islands. We found CRISPR loci and dam genes in an island specific for C. fetus subsp. fetus, and T4SS and sap genes...

  7. The Composition and Spatial Patterns of Bacterial Virulence Factors and Antibiotic Resistance Genes in 19 Wastewater Treatment Plants.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bing Zhang

    Full Text Available Bacterial pathogenicity and antibiotic resistance are of concern for environmental safety and public health. Accumulating evidence suggests that wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs are as an important sink and source of pathogens and antibiotic resistance genes (ARGs. Virulence genes (encoding virulence factors are good indicators for bacterial pathogenic potentials. To achieve a comprehensive understanding of bacterial pathogenic potentials and antibiotic resistance in WWTPs, bacterial virulence genes and ARGs in 19 WWTPs covering a majority of latitudinal zones of China were surveyed by using GeoChip 4.2. A total of 1610 genes covering 13 virulence factors and 1903 genes belonging to 11 ARG families were detected respectively. The bacterial virulence genes exhibited significant spatial distribution patterns of a latitudinal biodiversity gradient and a distance-decay relationship across China. Moreover, virulence genes tended to coexist with ARGs as shown by their strongly positive associations. In addition, key environmental factors shaping the overall virulence gene structure were identified. This study profiles the occurrence, composition and distribution of virulence genes and ARGs in current WWTPs in China, and uncovers spatial patterns and important environmental variables shaping their structure, which may provide the basis for further studies of bacterial virulence factors and antibiotic resistance in WWTPs.

  8. An Event Related Potentials Study of Semantic Coherence Effect during Episodic Encoding in Schizophrenia Patients

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lâle Battal Merlet

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available The objective of this electrophysiological study was to investigate the processing of semantic coherence during encoding in relation to episodic memory processes promoted at test, in schizophrenia patients, by using the N400 paradigm. Eighteen schizophrenia patients and 15 healthy participants undertook a recognition memory task. The stimuli consisted of pairs of words either semantically related or unrelated to a given category name (context. During encoding, both groups exhibited an N400 external semantic coherence effect. Healthy controls also showed an N400 internal semantic coherence effect, but this effect was not present in patients. At test, related stimuli were accompanied by an FN400 old/new effect in both groups and by a parietal old/new effect in the control group alone. In the patient group, external semantic coherence effect was associated with FN400, while, in the control group, it was correlated to the parietal old/new effect. Our results indicate that schizophrenia patients can process the contextual information at encoding to enhance familiarity process for related stimuli at test. Therefore, cognitive rehabilitation therapies targeting the implementation of semantic encoding strategies can mobilize familiarity which in turn can overcome the recollection deficit, promoting successful episodic memory performance in schizophrenia patients.

  9. Characterisation of potential virulence markers in Aeromonas caviae isolated from polluted and unpolluted aquatic environments in Morocco

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Imziln, Boujama; Krovacek, Karel; Baloda, Suraj B.

    1998-01-01

    A total of 100 Aeromonas caviae strains isolated from river waters (38 isolates), raw sewage (30 isolates) and effluents of stabilisation ponds (i.e. treated sewage; 32 isolates) in Marrakech, Morocco, were tested for the presence of putative virulence factors to delineate differences, if any...

  10. The effect of encoding manipulation on word-stem cued recall: an event-related potential study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fay, Séverine; Isingrini, Michel; Ragot, Richard; Pouthas, Viviane

    2005-08-01

    The purpose of the present study was to find out whether the neural correlates of explicit retrieval from episodic memory would vary according to conditions at encoding when the words were presented in separate study/test blocks. Event-related potentials (ERPs) were recorded while participants performed a word-stem cued-recall task. Deeply (semantically) studied words were associated with higher levels of recall and faster response times than shallowly (lexically) studied words. Robust ERP old/new effects were observed for each encoding condition. They varied in magnitude, being largest in the semantic condition. As expected, scalp distributions also differed: for deeply studied words, the old/new effect resembled that found in previous ERP studies of word-stem cued-recall tasks (parietal and right frontal effects, between 400-800 and 800-1100 ms post-stimulus), whereas for shallowly studied words, the parietal old/new effect was absent in the latter latency window. These results can be interpreted as reflecting access to different kinds of memory representation depending on the nature of the processing engaged during encoding. Furthermore, differences in the ERPs elicited by new items indicate that subjects adopted different processing strategies in the test blocks following each encoding condition.

  11. POTENTIAL FOR GREAT EGRETS (ARDEA ALBA) TO TRANSMIT A VIRULENT STRAIN OF AEROMONAS HYDROPHILA AMONG CHANNEL CATFISH (ICTALURUS PUNCTATUS) CULTURE PONDS.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jubirt, Madison M; Hanson, Larry A; Hanson-Dorr, Katie C; Ford, Lorelei; Lemmons, Scott; Fioranelli, Paul; Cunningham, Fred L

    2015-07-01

    Aeromonas hydrophila is a gram-negative, rod-shaped, facultative, anaerobic bacterium that is ubiquitous in freshwater and slightly brackish aquatic environments and infects fish, humans, reptiles, and birds. Recent severe outbreaks of disease in commercial channel catfish (Ictalurus punctatus) aquaculture ponds have been associated with a highly virulent A. hydrophila strain (VAH), which is genetically distinct from less-virulent strains. The epidemiology of this disease has not been determined. Given that A. hydrophila infects birds, we hypothesized that fish-eating birds may serve as a reservoir for VAH and spread the pathogen by flying to uninfected ponds. Great Egrets (Ardea alba) were used in this transmission model because these wading birds frequently prey on farmed catfish. Great Egrets that were fed VAH-infected catfish shed VAH in feces demonstrating their potential to spread VAH.

  12. Visual encoding and fixation target selection in free viewing: presaccadic brain potentials

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrey R Nikolaev

    2013-06-01

    Full Text Available In scrutinizing a scene, the eyes alternate between fixations and saccades. During a fixation, two component processes can be distinguished: visual encoding and selection of the next fixation target. We aimed to distinguish the neural correlates of these processes in the electrical brain activity prior to a saccade onset. Participants viewed color photographs of natural scenes, in preparation for a change detection task. Then, for each participant and each scene we computed an image heat map, with temperature representing the duration and density of fixations. The temperature difference between the start and end points of saccades was taken as a measure of the expected task-relevance of the information concentrated in specific regions of a scene. Visual encoding was evaluated according to whether subsequent change was correctly detected. Saccades with larger temperature difference were more likely to be followed by correct detection than ones with smaller temperature differences. The amplitude of presaccadic activity over anterior brain areas was larger for correct detection than for detection failure. This difference was observed for short scrutinizing but not for long explorative saccades, suggesting that presaccadic activity reflects top-down saccade guidance. Thus, successful encoding requires local scanning of scene regions which are expected to be task-relevant. Next, we evaluated fixation target selection. Saccades moving up in temperature were preceded by presaccadic activity of higher amplitude than those moving down. This finding suggests that presaccadic activity reflects attention deployed to the following fixation location. Our findings illustrate how presaccadic activity can elucidate concurrent brain processes related to the immediate goal of planning the next saccade and the larger-scale goal of constructing a robust representation of the visual scene.

  13. Complete genome sequence of hypervirulent and outbreak-associated Acinetobacter baumannii strain LAC-4: epidemiology, resistance genetic determinants and potential virulence factors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ou, Hong-Yu; Kuang, Shan N.; He, Xinyi; Molgora, Brenda M.; Ewing, Peter J.; Deng, Zixin; Osby, Melanie; Chen, Wangxue; Xu, H. Howard

    2015-01-01

    Acinetobacter baumannii is an important human pathogen due to its multi-drug resistance. In this study, the genome of an ST10 outbreak A. baumannii isolate LAC-4 was completely sequenced to better understand its epidemiology, antibiotic resistance genetic determinants and potential virulence factors. Compared with 20 other complete genomes of A. baumannii, LAC-4 genome harbors at least 12 copies of five distinct insertion sequences. It contains 12 and 14 copies of two novel IS elements, ISAba25 and ISAba26, respectively. Additionally, three novel composite transposons were identified: Tn6250, Tn6251 and Tn6252, two of which contain resistance genes. The antibiotic resistance genetic determinants on the LAC-4 genome correlate well with observed antimicrobial susceptibility patterns. Moreover, twelve genomic islands (GI) were identified in LAC-4 genome. Among them, the 33.4-kb GI12 contains a large number of genes which constitute the K (capsule) locus. LAC-4 harbors several unique putative virulence factor loci. Furthermore, LAC-4 and all 19 other outbreak isolates were found to harbor a heme oxygenase gene (hemO)-containing gene cluster. The sequencing of the first complete genome of an ST10 A. baumannii clinical strain should accelerate our understanding of the epidemiology, mechanisms of resistance and virulence of A. baumannii. PMID:25728466

  14. Carcinogenic Activities and Sperm Abnormalities of Methicillin Resistance Staphylococcus aureus and Inhibition of Their Virulence Potentials by Ayamycin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    El-Gendy, Mervat Morsy Abbas Ahmed; Abdel-Wahhab, Khaled G; Mannaa, Fathia A; Farghaly, Ayman A; El-Bondkly, Ahmed M A

    2017-11-01

    This investigation aimed to study the in vivo harmful effects of the subcutaneous injection of different methicillin resistance Staphylococcus aureus extracts (MRSA2, MRSA4, MRSA10, MRSA69, MRSA70, MRSA76, and MRSA78). Such strains represented the highest minimum inhibition concentration toward methicillin with various multidrug-resistant patterns. The obtained results revealed that rats injected with the MRSA4 extract died immediately after the last dose indicating the high cytotoxicity of MRSA4 strain (100% mortality). While the mortalities in other groups injected by the other MRSA extracts ranged from 50 to 75%. In comparison with the normal animal group, all MRSA extracts induced a hepatotoxic effect which was indicated from the significant (p study focused on fighting MRSA virulence factors by the new compound ayamycin, which proved to be potent anti-virulence factor against all MRSA strains under study by significant decreasing of their streptokinase activities, hemolysin synthesis, biofilm formation, and their cell surface hydrophobicity.

  15. Quorum sensing signals are produced by Aeromonas salmonicida and quorum sensing inhibitors can reduce production of a potential virulence factor

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rasch, Maria; Kastbjerg, Vicky Gaedt; Bruhn, Jesper Bartholin

    2007-01-01

    Many pathogens control production of virulence factors by self-produced signals in a process called quorum sensing (QS). We demonstrate that acyl homoserine lactone (AHL) signals, which enable bacteria to express certain phenotypes in relation to cell density, are produced by a wide spectrum...... of Aeromonas salmonicida strains. All 31 typical strains were AHL producers as were 21 of 26 atypical strains, but on a strain population basis, production of virulence factors such as protease, lipase, A-layer or pigment did not correlate with the production and accumulation of AHLs in the growth medium...... of Aeromonas salmonicida. The most efficient compound N-(heptylsulfanylacetyl)-L-homoserine lactone (HepS-AHL), reduced protease production by a factor of 10. Five extracellular proteases were detected on gelatin-containing sodium dodecyl sulphate polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis (SDS-PAGE) gels and 3...

  16. Effect of ethanol on differential protein production and expression of potential virulence functions in the opportunistic pathogen Acinetobacter baumannii.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chika C Nwugo

    Full Text Available Acinetobacter baumannii persists in the medical environment and causes severe human nosocomial infections. Previous studies showed that low-level ethanol exposure increases the virulence of A. baumannii ATCC 17978. To better understand the mechanisms involved in this response, 2-D gel electrophoresis combined with mass spectrometry was used to investigate differential protein production in bacteria cultured in the presence or absence of ethanol. This approach showed that the presence of ethanol significantly induces and represses the production of 22 and 12 proteins, respectively. Although over 25% of the ethanol-induced proteins were stress-response related, the overall bacterial viability was uncompromised when cultured under these conditions. Production of proteins involved in lipid and carbohydrate anabolism was increased in the presence of ethanol, a response that correlates with increased carbohydrate biofilm content, enhanced biofilm formation on abiotic surfaces and decrease bacterial motility on semi-solid surfaces. The presence of ethanol also induced the acidification of bacterial cultures and the production of indole-3-acetic acid (IAA, a ubiquitous plant hormone that signals bacterial stress-tolerance and promotes plant-bacteria interactions. These responses could be responsible for the significantly enhanced virulence of A. baumannii ATCC 17978 cells cultured in the presence of ethanol when tested with the Galleria mellonella experimental infection model. Taken together, these observations provide new insights into the effect of ethanol in bacterial virulence. This alcohol predisposes the human host to infections by A. baumannii and could favor the survival and adaptation of this pathogen to medical settings and adverse host environments.

  17. Sensitivity to acetic acid, ability to colonize abiotic surfaces and virulence potential of Listeria monocytogenes EGD-e after incubation on parsley leaves.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rieu, A; Guzzo, J; Piveteau, P

    2010-02-01

    To investigate how the survival of Listeria monocytogenes on parsley leaves may affect its ability to sustain process-related harsh conditions and its virulence. Parsley seedlings were spot inoculated with stationary phase cells of L. monocytogenes EGD-e and incubated for 15 days. Each day, bacterial cells were harvested and enumerated, and their ability to survive acetic acid challenge (90 min, pH 4.0), to colonize abiotic surfaces and to grow as biofilms was assessed. After a 3-log decrease over the first 48 h, the population stabilized to about 10(6) CFU g(-1) until the sixth day. After the sixth day, L. monocytogenes was no longer detected, even after specific enrichment. Incubation on parsley leaves affected the ability of L. monocytogenes to survive acetic acid challenge (90 min, pH 4.0) and to adhere to stainless steel although the ability to grow as biofilm was preserved. To further investigate these physiological alterations, the mRNA levels of six target genes (bsh, clpC, groEL, inlA, opuC, prfA) was quantified using reverse transcription qPCR after 5 h of incubation on parsley leaves. A decrease was observed in all but one (bsh) target, including groEL and clpC which are involved in resistance to salt and acid. Moreover, the decrease in the levels of inlA, prfA and opuC transcripts after incubation on parsley suggested a repression of some genes involved in pathogenicity. In vitro assessment of mammalian cell adherence and invasion using Caco-2 cells confirmed the repression of the virulence factor InlA; however, the virulence potential in vivo in the chick embryo model was not affected. Listeria monocytogenes did undergo rapid changes to adapt its physiology to the phyllosphere. This study highlights the physiological changes undergone by L. monocytogenes during/after survival on parsley leaves.

  18. Antibiotic resistance, phylogenetic grouping and virulence potential of Escherichia coli isolated from the faeces of intensively farmed and free range poultry.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Obeng, Akua Serwaah; Rickard, Heather; Ndi, Olasumbo; Sexton, Margaret; Barton, Mary

    2012-01-27

    Antibiotic use in poultry production is a risk factor for promoting the emergence of resistant Escherichia coli. To ascertain differences in different classes of chickens, the resistance profile, some virulence genes and phylogenetic grouping on 251 E. coli isolates from intensive meat (free range and indoor commercial) and free range egg layer chickens collected between December 2008 and June 2009 in South Australia were performed. Among the 251 strains, 102 (40.6%) and 67 (26.7%) were found to be resistant to tetracycline and ampicillin respectively. Resistance was also observed to trimethoprim-sulfamethoxazole (12.4%), streptomycin (10.8%), spectinomycin (9.6%), neomycin (6.0%) and florfenicol (2.0%) but no resistance was found to ceftiofur, ciprofloxacin or gentamicin. Amplification of DNA of the isolates by polymerase chain reaction revealed the presence of genes that code for resistant determinants: tetracycline (tet(A), tet(B) and tet(C)), ampicillin (bla(TEM) and bla(SHV)), trimethoprim (dhfrV and dhfrXIII), sulphonamide (sulI and sulII), neomycin (aph(3)-Ia(aphA1)), and spectinomycin-streptinomycin (aadA2). In addition, 32.3-39.4% of the isolates were found to belong to commensal groups (A and B1) and 11.2-17.1% belonged to the virulent groups (B2 and D). Among the 251 E. coli isolates, 25 (10.0%) carried two or more virulence genes typical of Extraintestinal pathogenic E. coli (ExPEC). Furthermore, 17 of the isolates with multi-resistance were identified to be groups B2 and D. Although no significant difference was observed between isolates from free range and indoor commercial meat chickens (P>0.05), significant differences was observed between the different classes of meat chickens (free range and indoor commercial) and egg layers (Pzoonotic potential of poultry E. coli isolates. Copyright © 2011. Published by Elsevier B.V.

  19. Time dependent effects of stress prior to encoding on event-related potentials and 24 h delayed retrieval

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Quaedflieg, C.W.E.M.; Schwabe, L.; Meyer, T.; Smeets, T.J.M.

    2013-01-01

    Stress can exert profound effects on memory encoding. Here, we investigated whether (sub)cortical information processing during encoding and memory retrieval at a 24 h delayed test are affected by the temporal proximity between stress and memory encoding. Sixty-four participants engaged in the

  20. Incidental encoding of emotional pictures: affective bias studied through event related brain potentials.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tapia, Manuel; Carretié, Luis; Sierra, Benjamín; Mercado, Francisco

    2008-06-01

    Emotional stimuli are better remembered than neutral stimuli. Most of the studies taking into account this emotional bias refer to explicit memory, use behavioral measures of the recall and predict better recall of negative stimuli. The few studies taking into account implicit memory and the valence emotional dimension are inconclusive on the effect of the stimulus' emotional valence. In the present study, 120 pictures (30 positive, 30 negative, 30 relaxing and 30 neutral) were shown to, and assessed by, 28 participants (study phase). Subsequently, event related brain potentials (ERPs) were recorded during the presentation of 120 new (shown for the first time) and 120 old (already shown in the study phase) pictures (test phase). No explicit instructions or clues related to recovery were given to participants, and a distractor task was employed, in order to maintain implicit the memory assessment. As expected from other studies' data, our results showed that old stimuli elicited an enhanced late positive component 450 ms after stimulus onset (repetition effect). Moreover, this effect was modulated by the stimuli's emotional valence, since the most positively valenced stimuli were associated with a decreased repetition effect with respect to the most negatively valenced stimuli. This effect was located at ventromedial prefrontal cortex. These results suggest the existence of a valence-mediated bias in implicit memory.

  1. Transient receptor potential channels encode volatile chemicals sensed by rat trigeminal ganglion neurons.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Matthias Lübbert

    Full Text Available Primary sensory afferents of the dorsal root and trigeminal ganglia constantly transmit sensory information depicting the individual's physical and chemical environment to higher brain regions. Beyond the typical trigeminal stimuli (e.g. irritants, environmental stimuli comprise a plethora of volatile chemicals with olfactory components (odorants. In spite of a complete loss of their sense of smell, anosmic patients may retain the ability to roughly discriminate between different volatile compounds. While the detailed mechanisms remain elusive, sensory structures belonging to the trigeminal system seem to be responsible for this phenomenon. In order to gain a better understanding of the mechanisms underlying the activation of the trigeminal system by volatile chemicals, we investigated odorant-induced membrane potential changes in cultured rat trigeminal neurons induced by the odorants vanillin, heliotropyl acetone, helional, and geraniol. We observed the dose-dependent depolarization of trigeminal neurons upon application of these substances occurring in a stimulus-specific manner and could show that distinct neuronal populations respond to different odorants. Using specific antagonists, we found evidence that TRPA1, TRPM8, and/or TRPV1 contribute to the activation. In order to further test this hypothesis, we used recombinantly expressed rat and human variants of these channels to investigate whether they are indeed activated by the odorants tested. We additionally found that the odorants dose-dependently inhibit two-pore potassium channels TASK1 and TASK3 heterologously expressed In Xenopus laevis oocytes. We suggest that the capability of various odorants to activate different TRP channels and to inhibit potassium channels causes neuronal depolarization and activation of distinct subpopulations of trigeminal sensory neurons, forming the basis for a specific representation of volatile chemicals in the trigeminal ganglia.

  2. Comparative Genomic Characterization of the Highly Persistent and Potentially Virulent Cronobacter sakazakii ST83, CC65 Strain H322 and Other ST83 Strains

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hannah R. Chase

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Cronobacter (C. sakazakii is an opportunistic pathogen and has been associated with serious infections with high mortality rates predominantly in pre-term, low-birth weight and/or immune compromised neonates and infants. Infections have been epidemiologically linked to consumption of intrinsically and extrinsically contaminated lots of reconstituted powdered infant formula (PIF, thus contamination of such products is a challenging task for the PIF producing industry. We present the draft genome of C. sakazakii H322, a highly persistent sequence type (ST 83, clonal complex (CC 65, serotype O:7 strain obtained from a batch of non-released contaminated PIF product. The presence of this strain in the production environment was traced back more than 4 years. Whole genome sequencing (WGS of this strain together with four more ST83 strains (PIF production environment-associated confirmed a high degree of sequence homology among four of the five strains. Phylogenetic analysis using microarray (MA and WGS data showed that the ST83 strains were highly phylogenetically related and MA showed that between 5 and 38 genes differed from one another in these strains. All strains possessed the pESA3-like virulence plasmid and one strain possessed a pESA2-like plasmid. In addition, a pCS1-like plasmid was also found. In order to assess the potential in vivo pathogenicity of the ST83 strains, each strain was subjected to infection studies using the recently developed zebrafish embryo model. Our results showed a high (90–100% zebrafish mortality rate for all of these strains, suggesting a high risk for infections and illness in neonates potentially exposed to PIF contaminated with ST83 C. sakazakii strains. In summary, virulent ST83, CC65, serotype CsakO:7 strains, though rarely found intrinsically in PIF, can persist within a PIF manufacturing facility for years and potentially pose significant quality assurance challenges to the PIF manufacturing industry.

  3. Detection of virulence-associated genes in Brucella melitensis ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Ibrahim Eldaghayes

    2018-03-20

    Mar 20, 2018 ... isolated from goats. This discrepancies may indicate that B. melitensis field strains prevailing in Egypt are more virulent than the strains of B. melitensis isolated from caprines in Iran. As, it was emphasized that the. T4SS of Brucella encoded by the virB operon is a major virulence factor (Delrue et al., 2005).

  4. Phosphotyrosine-Mediated Regulation of Enterohemorrhagic Escherichia coli Virulence

    Science.gov (United States)

    Robertson, Colin D.; Hazen, Tracy H.; Kaper, James B.

    2018-01-01

    ABSTRACT Enteric pathogens with low infectious doses rely on the ability to orchestrate the expression of virulence and metabolism-associated genes in response to environmental cues for successful infection. Accordingly, the human pathogen enterohemorrhagic Escherichia coli (EHEC) employs a complex multifaceted regulatory network to link the expression of type III secretion system (T3SS) components to nutrient availability. While phosphorylation of histidine and aspartate residues on two-component system response regulators is recognized as an integral part of bacterial signaling, the involvement of phosphotyrosine-mediated control is minimally explored in Gram-negative pathogens. Our recent phosphotyrosine profiling study of E. coli identified 342 phosphorylated proteins, indicating that phosphotyrosine modifications in bacteria are more prevalent than previously anticipated. The present study demonstrates that tyrosine phosphorylation of a metabolite-responsive LacI/GalR family regulator, Cra, negatively affects T3SS expression under glycolytic conditions that are typical for the colonic lumen environment where production of the T3SS is unnecessary. Our data suggest that Cra phosphorylation affects T3SS expression by modulating the expression of ler, which encodes the major activator of EHEC virulence gene expression. Phosphorylation of the Cra Y47 residue diminishes DNA binding to fine-tune the expression of virulence-associated genes, including those of the locus of enterocyte effacement pathogenicity island that encode the T3SS, and thereby negatively affects the formation of attaching and effacing lesions. Our data indicate that tyrosine phosphorylation provides an additional mechanism to control the DNA binding of Cra and other LacI/GalR family regulators, including LacI and PurR. This study describes an initial effort to unravel the role of global phosphotyrosine signaling in the control of EHEC virulence potential. PMID:29487233

  5. Phosphotyrosine-Mediated Regulation of Enterohemorrhagic Escherichia coli Virulence

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Colin D. Robertson

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available Enteric pathogens with low infectious doses rely on the ability to orchestrate the expression of virulence and metabolism-associated genes in response to environmental cues for successful infection. Accordingly, the human pathogen enterohemorrhagic Escherichia coli (EHEC employs a complex multifaceted regulatory network to link the expression of type III secretion system (T3SS components to nutrient availability. While phosphorylation of histidine and aspartate residues on two-component system response regulators is recognized as an integral part of bacterial signaling, the involvement of phosphotyrosine-mediated control is minimally explored in Gram-negative pathogens. Our recent phosphotyrosine profiling study of E. coli identified 342 phosphorylated proteins, indicating that phosphotyrosine modifications in bacteria are more prevalent than previously anticipated. The present study demonstrates that tyrosine phosphorylation of a metabolite-responsive LacI/GalR family regulator, Cra, negatively affects T3SS expression under glycolytic conditions that are typical for the colonic lumen environment where production of the T3SS is unnecessary. Our data suggest that Cra phosphorylation affects T3SS expression by modulating the expression of ler, which encodes the major activator of EHEC virulence gene expression. Phosphorylation of the Cra Y47 residue diminishes DNA binding to fine-tune the expression of virulence-associated genes, including those of the locus of enterocyte effacement pathogenicity island that encode the T3SS, and thereby negatively affects the formation of attaching and effacing lesions. Our data indicate that tyrosine phosphorylation provides an additional mechanism to control the DNA binding of Cra and other LacI/GalR family regulators, including LacI and PurR. This study describes an initial effort to unravel the role of global phosphotyrosine signaling in the control of EHEC virulence potential.

  6. Contemporary Avian Influenza A Virus Subtype H1, H6, H7, H10, and H15 Hemagglutinin Genes Encode a Mammalian Virulence Factor Similar to the 1918 Pandemic Virus H1 Hemagglutinin

    OpenAIRE

    Qi, Li; Pujanauski, Lindsey M.; Davis, A. Sally; Schwartzman, Louis M.; Chertow, Daniel S.; Baxter, David; Scherler, Kelsey; Hartshorn, Kevan L.; Slemons, Richard D.; Walters, Kathie-Anne; Kash, John C.; Taubenberger, Jeffery K.

    2014-01-01

    ABSTRACT Zoonotic avian influenza virus infections may lead to epidemics or pandemics. The 1918 pandemic influenza virus has an avian influenza virus-like genome, and its H1 hemagglutinin was identified as a key mammalian virulence factor. A chimeric 1918 virus expressing a contemporary avian H1 hemagglutinin, however, displayed murine pathogenicity indistinguishable from that of the 1918 virus. Here, isogenic chimeric avian influenza viruses were constructed on an avian influenza virus backb...

  7. The Environmental Acinetobacter baumannii Isolate DSM30011 Reveals Clues into the Preantibiotic Era Genome Diversity, Virulence Potential, and Niche Range of a Predominant Nosocomial Pathogen

    Science.gov (United States)

    Viale, Alejandro M.; Borges, Vítor; Cameranesi, María M.; Taib, Najwa; Espariz, Martín; Brochier-Armanet, Céline; Gomes, João Paulo; Salcedo, Suzana P.

    2017-01-01

    Abstract Acinetobacter baumannii represents nowadays an important nosocomial opportunistic pathogen whose reservoirs outside the clinical setting are obscure. Here, we traced the origins of the collection strain A. baumannii DSM30011 to an isolate first reported in 1944, obtained from the enriched microbiota responsible of the aerobic decomposition of the resinous desert shrub guayule. Whole-genome sequencing and phylogenetic analysis based on core genes confirmed DSM30011 affiliation to A. baumannii. Comparative studies with 32 complete A. baumannii genomes revealed the presence of 12 unique accessory chromosomal regions in DSM30011 including five encompassing phage-related genes, five containing toxin genes of the type-6 secretion system, and one with an atypical CRISPRs/cas cluster. No antimicrobial resistance islands were identified in DSM30011 agreeing with a general antimicrobial susceptibility phenotype including folate synthesis inhibitors. The marginal ampicillin resistance of DSM30011 most likely derived from chromosomal ADC-type ampC and blaOXA-51-type genes. Searching for catabolic pathways genes revealed several clusters involved in the degradation of plant defenses including woody tissues and a previously unreported atu locus responsible of aliphatic terpenes degradation, thus suggesting that resinous plants may provide an effective niche for this organism. DSM30011 also harbored most genes and regulatory mechanisms linked to persistence and virulence in pathogenic Acinetobacter species. This strain thus revealed important clues into the genomic diversity, virulence potential, and niche ranges of the preantibiotic era A. baumannii population, and may provide an useful tool for our understanding of the processes that led to the recent evolution of this species toward an opportunistic pathogen of humans. PMID:28934377

  8. Multiple activities of LigB potentiate virulence of Leptospira interrogans: inhibition of alternative and classical pathways of complement.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Henry A Choy

    Full Text Available Microbial pathogens acquire the immediate imperative to avoid or counteract the formidable defense of innate immunity as soon as they overcome the initial physical barriers of the host. Many have adopted the strategy of directly disrupting the complement system through the capture of its components, using proteins on the pathogen's surface. In leptospirosis, pathogenic Leptospira spp. are resistant to complement-mediated killing, in contrast to the highly vulnerable non-pathogenic strains. Pathogenic L. interrogans uses LenA/LfhA and LcpA to respectively sequester and commandeer the function of two regulators, factor H and C4BP, which in turn bind C3b or C4b to interrupt the alternative or classical pathways of complement activation. LigB, another surface-proximal protein originally characterized as an adhesin binding multiple host proteins, has other activities suggesting its importance early in infection, including binding extracellular matrix, plasma, and cutaneous repair proteins and inhibiting hemostasis. In this study, we used a recent model of ectopic expression of LigB in the saprophyte, L. biflexa, to test the hypothesis that LigB also interacts with complement proteins C3b and C4b to promote the virulence of L. interrogans. The surface expression of LigB partially rescued the non-pathogen from killing by 5% normal human serum, showing 1.3- to 48-fold greater survival 4 to 6 d following exposure to complement than cultures of the non-expressing parental strain. Recombinant LigB7'-12 comprising the LigB-specific immunoglobulin repeats binds directly to human complement proteins, C3b and C4b, with respective K(ds of 43±26 nM and 69±18 nM. Repeats 9 to 11, previously shown to contain the binding domain for fibronectin and fibrinogen, are also important in LigB-complement interactions, which interfere with the alternative and classical pathways measured by complement-mediated hemolysis of erythrocytes. Thus, LigB is an adaptable interface

  9. Contemporary avian influenza A virus subtype H1, H6, H7, H10, and H15 hemagglutinin genes encode a mammalian virulence factor similar to the 1918 pandemic virus H1 hemagglutinin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Qi, Li; Pujanauski, Lindsey M; Davis, A Sally; Schwartzman, Louis M; Chertow, Daniel S; Baxter, David; Scherler, Kelsey; Hartshorn, Kevan L; Slemons, Richard D; Walters, Kathie-Anne; Kash, John C; Taubenberger, Jeffery K

    2014-11-18

    Zoonotic avian influenza virus infections may lead to epidemics or pandemics. The 1918 pandemic influenza virus has an avian influenza virus-like genome, and its H1 hemagglutinin was identified as a key mammalian virulence factor. A chimeric 1918 virus expressing a contemporary avian H1 hemagglutinin, however, displayed murine pathogenicity indistinguishable from that of the 1918 virus. Here, isogenic chimeric avian influenza viruses were constructed on an avian influenza virus backbone, differing only by hemagglutinin subtype expressed. Viruses expressing the avian H1, H6, H7, H10, and H15 subtypes were pathogenic in mice and cytopathic in normal human bronchial epithelial cells, in contrast to H2-, H3-, H5-, H9-, H11-, H13-, H14-, and H16-expressing viruses. Mouse pathogenicity was associated with pulmonary macrophage and neutrophil recruitment. These data suggest that avian influenza virus hemagglutinins H1, H6, H7, H10, and H15 contain inherent mammalian virulence factors and likely share a key virulence property of the 1918 virus. Consequently, zoonotic infections with avian influenza viruses bearing one of these hemagglutinins may cause enhanced disease in mammals. Influenza viruses from birds can cause outbreaks in humans and may contribute to the development of pandemics. The 1918 pandemic influenza virus has an avian influenza virus-like genome, and its main surface protein, an H1 subtype hemagglutinin, was identified as a key mammalian virulence factor. In a previous study, a 1918 virus expressing an avian H1 gene was as virulent in mice as the reconstructed 1918 virus. Here, a set of avian influenza viruses was constructed, differing only by hemagglutinin subtype. Viruses with the avian H1, H6, H7, H10, and H15 subtypes caused severe disease in mice and damaged human lung cells. Consequently, infections with avian influenza viruses bearing one of these hemagglutinins may cause enhanced disease in mammals, and therefore surveillance for human infections

  10. Combinatorial mutagenesis of the voltage-sensing domain enables the optical resolution of action potentials firing at 60 Hz by a genetically encoded fluorescent sensor of membrane potential.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Piao, Hong Hua; Rajakumar, Dhanarajan; Kang, Bok Eum; Kim, Eun Ha; Baker, Bradley J

    2015-01-07

    ArcLight is a genetically encoded fluorescent voltage sensor using the voltage-sensing domain of the voltage-sensing phosphatase from Ciona intestinalis that gives a large but slow-responding optical signal in response to changes in membrane potential (Jin et al., 2012). Fluorescent voltage sensors using the voltage-sensing domain from other species give faster yet weaker optical signals (Baker et al., 2012; Han et al., 2013). Sequence alignment of voltage-sensing phosphatases from different species revealed conserved polar and charged residues at 7 aa intervals in the S1-S3 transmembrane segments of the voltage-sensing domain, suggesting potential coil-coil interactions. The contribution of these residues to the voltage-induced optical signal was tested using a cassette mutagenesis screen by flanking each transmembrane segment with unique restriction sites to allow for the testing of individual mutations in each transmembrane segment, as well as combinations in all four transmembrane segments. Addition of a counter charge in S2 improved the kinetics of the optical response. A double mutation in the S4 domain dramatically reduced the slow component of the optical signal seen in ArcLight. Combining that double S4 mutant with the mutation in the S2 domain yielded a probe with kinetics voltage-sensing domain could potentially lead to fluorescent sensors capable of optically resolving neuronal inhibition and subthreshold synaptic activity. Copyright © 2015 the authors 0270-6474/15/350372-15$15.00/0.

  11. DNA microarray-based assessment of virulence potential of Shiga toxin gene-carrying Escherichia coli O104:H7 isolated from feedlot cattle feces.

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    Pragathi B Shridhar

    Full Text Available Escherichia coli O104:H4, a hybrid pathotype reported in a large 2011 foodborne outbreak in Germany, has not been detected in cattle feces. However, cattle harbor and shed in the feces other O104 serotypes, particularly O104:H7, which has been associated with sporadic cases of diarrhea in humans. The objective of our study was to assess the virulence potential of Shiga toxin-producing E. coli (STEC O104:H7 isolated from feces of feedlot cattle using DNA microarray. Six strains of STEC O104:H7 isolated from cattle feces were analyzed using FDA-E. coli Identification (ECID DNA microarray to determine their virulence profiles and compare them to the human strains (clinical of O104:H7, STEC O104:H4 (German outbreak strain, and O104:H21 (milk-associated Montana outbreak strain. Scatter plots were generated from the array data to visualize the gene-level differences between bovine and human O104 strains, and Pearson correlation coefficients (r were determined. Splits tree was generated to analyze relatedness between the strains. All O104:H7 strains, both bovine and human, similar to O104:H4 and O104:H21 outbreak strains were negative for intimin (eae. The bovine strains were positive for Shiga toxin 1 subtype c (stx1c, enterohemolysin (ehxA, tellurite resistance gene (terD, IrgA homolog protein (iha, type 1 fimbriae (fimH, and negative for genes that code for effector proteins of type III secretory system. The six cattle O104 strains were closely related (r = 0.86-0.98 to each other, except for a few differences in phage related and non-annotated genes. One of the human clinical O104:H7 strains (2011C-3665 was more closely related to the bovine O104:H7 strains (r = 0.81-0.85 than the other four human clinical O104:H7 strains (r = 0.75-0.79. Montana outbreak strain (O104:H21 was more closely related to four of the human clinical O104:H7 strains than the bovine O104:H7 strains. None of the bovine E. coli O104 strains carried genes characteristic of E

  12. Encoding of rat working memory by power of multi-channel local field potentials via sparse non-negative matrix factorization

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Xu Liu; Tiao-Tiao Liu; Wen-Wen Bai; Hu Yi; Shuang-Yan Li; Xin Tian

    2013-01-01

    Working memory plays an important role in human cognition.This study investigated how working memory was encoded by the power of multi-channel local field potentials (LFPs) based on sparse nonnegative matrix factorization (SNMF).SNMF was used to extract features from LFPs recorded from the prefrontal cortex of four Sprague-Dawley rats during a memory task in a Y maze,with 10 trials for each rat.Then the power-increased LFP components were selected as working memory-related features and the other components were removed.After that,the inverse operation of SNMF was used to study the encoding of working memory in the timefrequency domain.We demonstrated that theta and gamma power increased significantly during the working memory task.The results suggested that postsynaptic activity was simulated well by the sparse activity model.The theta and gamma bands were meaningful for encoding working memory.

  13. Riverbed Sediments as Reservoirs of Multiple Vibrio cholerae Virulence-Associated Genes: A Potential Trigger for Cholera Outbreaks in Developing Countries.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abia, Akebe Luther King; Ubomba-Jaswa, Eunice; Momba, Maggy Ndombo Benteke

    2017-01-01

    Africa remains the most cholera stricken continent in the world as many people lacking access to safe drinking water rely mostly on polluted rivers as their main water sources. However, studies in these countries investigating the presence of Vibrio cholerae in aquatic environments have paid little attention to bed sediments. Also, information on the presence of virulence-associated genes (VAGs) in environmental ctx -negative V. cholerae strains in this region is lacking. Thus, we investigated the presence of V. cholerae VAGs in water and riverbed sediment of the Apies River, South Africa. Altogether, 120 samples (60 water and 60 sediment samples) collected from ten sites on the river (January and February 2014) were analysed using PCR. Of the 120 samples, 37 sediment and 31 water samples were positive for at least one of the genes investigated. The haemolysin gene (hlyA) was the most isolated gene. The cholera toxin (ctxAB) and non-O1 heat-stable (stn/sto) genes were not detected. Genes were frequently detected at sites influenced by human activities. Thus, identification of V. cholerae VAGs in sediments suggests the possible presence of V. cholerae and identifies sediments of the Apies River as a reservoir for potentially pathogenic V. cholerae with possible public health implications.

  14. Riverbed Sediments as Reservoirs of Multiple Vibrio cholerae Virulence-Associated Genes: A Potential Trigger for Cholera Outbreaks in Developing Countries

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Akebe Luther King Abia

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Africa remains the most cholera stricken continent in the world as many people lacking access to safe drinking water rely mostly on polluted rivers as their main water sources. However, studies in these countries investigating the presence of Vibrio cholerae in aquatic environments have paid little attention to bed sediments. Also, information on the presence of virulence-associated genes (VAGs in environmental ctx-negative V. cholerae strains in this region is lacking. Thus, we investigated the presence of V. cholerae VAGs in water and riverbed sediment of the Apies River, South Africa. Altogether, 120 samples (60 water and 60 sediment samples collected from ten sites on the river (January and February 2014 were analysed using PCR. Of the 120 samples, 37 sediment and 31 water samples were positive for at least one of the genes investigated. The haemolysin gene (hlyA was the most isolated gene. The cholera toxin (ctxAB and non-O1 heat-stable (stn/sto genes were not detected. Genes were frequently detected at sites influenced by human activities. Thus, identification of V. cholerae VAGs in sediments suggests the possible presence of V. cholerae and identifies sediments of the Apies River as a reservoir for potentially pathogenic V. cholerae with possible public health implications.

  15. Protective potential of non-dialyzable material fraction of cranberry juice on the virulence of P. gingivalis and F. nucleatum mixed infection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Polak, David; Naddaf, Raja; Shapira, Lior; Weiss, Ervin I; Houri-Haddad, Yael

    2013-07-01

    Periodontitis is a polymicrobial infectious disease. A novel potential chemical treatment modality may lie in bacterial anti-adhesive materials, such as cranberry juice fractions. The aim of this study is to explore the effect of high molecular weight cranberry constituent (non-dialyzable material [NDM]) on the virulence of a mixed infection with Porphyromonas gingivalis and Fusobacterium nucleatum in mice. In vitro, the anti-adhesive property of NDM was validated on epithelial cell culture, and inhibition of coaggregation was tested using a coaggregation assay. The in vivo effect was tested on the outcome of experimental periodontitis induced by a P. gingivalis and F. nucleatum mixed infection, and also on the local host response using the subcutaneous chamber model of infection. Phagocytosis was also tested on RAW macrophages by the use of fluorescent-labeled bacteria. NDM was found to inhibit the adhesion of both species of bacteria onto epithelial cells and to inhibit coaggregation in a dose-dependent manner. NDM consumption by mice attenuated the severity of experimental periodontitis compared with a mixed infection without NDM treatment. In infected subcutaneous chambers, NDM alone reduced tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α) levels induced by the mixed infection. In vitro, NDM eliminated TNF-α expression by macrophages that were exposed to P. gingivalis and F. nucleatum, without impairing their viability. Furthermore, NDM increased the phagocytosis of P. gingivalis. The results indicate that the use of NDM may hold potential protective and/or preventive modalities in periodontal disease. Underlying mechanisms for this trait may perhaps be the anti-adhesive properties of NDM or its potential effect on inflammation.

  16. Low virulence potential and in vivo transformation ability in the honey bee venom treated Clinostomum complanatum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rehman, Abdur; Ullah, Rizwan; Jaiswal, Neeshma; Khan, M A Hannan; Rehman, Lubna; Beg, Mirza Ahmar; Malhotra, Sandeep K; Abidi, S M A

    2017-12-01

    The helminth parasites possess great capabilities to adapt themselves within their hosts and also develop strategies to render the commonly used anthelmintics ineffective leading to the development of resistance against these drugs. Besides using anthelmintics the natural products have also been tested for their anti-parasitic effects. Therapeutic efficacy of honey bee venom (HBV) has been tested in various ailments including some protozoal infections but very little is known about its anthelmintic properties. To investigate the anthelmintic effect of HBV the excysted progenetic metacercariae of Clinostomum complanatum, a heamophagic, digenetic trematode with zoonotic potential, infecting a wide variety of hosts, were obtained from Trichogaster fasciatus, a forage fish, which serves as the intermediate host. The metacercarial worms were in vitro incubated in RPMI-1640 medium containing HBV along with the controls which were devoid of HBV for the analysis of worm motility, enzyme activity, polypeptide profile and surface topographical changes. The motility of the worms was significantly reduced in a time dependent manner with an increase in the concentration of HBV. Following incubation of worms the release of cysteine proteases was inhibited in the presence of HBV as revealed by gelatine substrate gel zymography. As well as the polypeptide profile was also significantly influenced, particularly intensity/expression of M r 19.4 kDa, 24 kDa and 34 kDa was significantly reduced upon HBV treatment. The HBV treatment also inhibited antioxidant enzyme, superoxide dismutase (SOD) and Glutathione-S-transferase (GST) significantly (p < 0.05) in the worms. The scanning electron microscopy of the HBV treated worms revealed tegumental disruptions and erosion of papillae as well as spines showing vacuolation in the tegument. The HBV treated worms also showed a marked decline in the transformation rate when introduced into an experimental host which further reflect the

  17. Detection of myxoma viruses encoding a defective M135R gene from clinical cases of myxomatosis; possible implications for the role of the M135R protein as a virulence factor

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Larsen Lars E

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Myxoma virus is a member of the Poxviridae and causes disease in European rabbits. Laboratory confirmation of the clinical disease, which occurs in the autumn of most years in Denmark, has been achieved previously using antigen ELISA and electron microscopy. Results An unusually large number of clinically suspected cases of myxomatosis were observed in Denmark during 2007. Myxoma virus DNA was detected, using a new real time PCR assay which targets the M029L gene, in over 70% of the clinical samples submitted for laboratory confirmation. Unexpectedly, further analysis revealed that a high proportion of these viral DNA preparations contained a frame-shift mutation within the M135R gene that has previously been identified as a virulence factor. This frame-shift mutation results in expression of a greatly truncated product. The same frame-shift mutation has also been found recently within an avirulent strain of myxoma virus (6918. However, three other frame-shift mutations found in this strain (in the genes M009L, M036L and M148R were not shared with the Danish viruses but a single nucleotide deletion in the M138R/M139R intergenic region was a common feature. Conclusions It appears that expression of the full-length myxoma virus M135R protein is not required for virulence in rabbits. Hence, the frame-shift mutation in the M135R gene in the nonpathogenic 6918 virus strain is not sufficient to explain the attenuation of this myxoma virus but one/some of the other frame-shift mutations alone or in conjunction with one/some of the thirty two amino acid substitutions must also contribute. The real time PCR assay for myxoma virus is a useful diagnostic tool for laboratory confirmation of suspected cases of myxomatosis.

  18. Detection of myxoma viruses encoding a defective M135R gene from clinical cases of myxomatosis; possible implications for the role of the M135R protein as a virulence factor.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Belsham, Graham J; Polacek, Charlotta; Breum, Solvej Ø; Larsen, Lars E; Bøtner, Anette

    2010-01-16

    Myxoma virus is a member of the Poxviridae and causes disease in European rabbits. Laboratory confirmation of the clinical disease, which occurs in the autumn of most years in Denmark, has been achieved previously using antigen ELISA and electron microscopy. An unusually large number of clinically suspected cases of myxomatosis were observed in Denmark during 2007. Myxoma virus DNA was detected, using a new real time PCR assay which targets the M029L gene, in over 70% of the clinical samples submitted for laboratory confirmation. Unexpectedly, further analysis revealed that a high proportion of these viral DNA preparations contained a frame-shift mutation within the M135R gene that has previously been identified as a virulence factor. This frame-shift mutation results in expression of a greatly truncated product. The same frame-shift mutation has also been found recently within an avirulent strain of myxoma virus (6918). However, three other frame-shift mutations found in this strain (in the genes M009L, M036L and M148R) were not shared with the Danish viruses but a single nucleotide deletion in the M138R/M139R intergenic region was a common feature. It appears that expression of the full-length myxoma virus M135R protein is not required for virulence in rabbits. Hence, the frame-shift mutation in the M135R gene in the nonpathogenic 6918 virus strain is not sufficient to explain the attenuation of this myxoma virus but one/some of the other frame-shift mutations alone or in conjunction with one/some of the thirty two amino acid substitutions must also contribute. The real time PCR assay for myxoma virus is a useful diagnostic tool for laboratory confirmation of suspected cases of myxomatosis.

  19. Time dependent effects of stress prior to encoding on event-related potentials and 24 h delayed retrieval.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Quaedflieg, Conny W E M; Schwabe, Lars; Meyer, Thomas; Smeets, Tom

    2013-12-01

    Stress can exert profound effects on memory encoding. Here, we investigated whether (sub)cortical information processing during encoding and memory retrieval at a 24 h delayed test are affected by the temporal proximity between stress and memory encoding. Sixty-four participants engaged in the Maastricht Acute Stress Test (MAST) or a no-stress control condition either immediately before (i.e., proximate condition) or 30 min before (i.e., distant condition) a picture encoding task. In general, stress decreased the number of freely recalled and recognized pictures and increased the number of false alarms. However, timing of stress exposure did not differentially affect picture recall, recognition or selective attention processes (i.e., LPP). Nevertheless, stress-induced cortisol responses and correctly recognized neutral pictures were positively associated within the proximate stress condition but negatively associated within the distant stress condition. These findings suggest that the time at which a stressor is applied might differentially impact the association between stress-induced cortisol elevations and memory formation and indicate the need for a finer delineation of the time window during which glucocorticoids affect memory formation processes. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  20. Carboxylesterase 1A2 encoding gene with increased transcription and potential rapid drug metabolism in Asian populations

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rasmussen, Henrik Berg; Madsen, Majbritt Busk; Lyauk, Yassine Kamal

    2017-01-01

    The carboxylesterase 1 gene (CES1) encodes a hydrolase implicated in the metabolism of commonly used drugs. CES1A2, a hybrid of CES1 and a CES1-like pseudogene, has a promoter that is weak in most individuals. However, some individuals harbor a promoter haplotype of this gene with two overlapping...

  1. Occurrence, Persistence, and Virulence Potential of Listeria ivanovii in Foods and Food Processing Environments in the Republic of Ireland

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morgan, Ciara A.; Hill, Colin; Gahan, Cormac G. M.; Jordan, Kieran

    2015-01-01

    The aim of this study was to assess the occurrence of L. ivanovii in foods and food processing environments in Ireland, to track persistence, and to characterize the disease causing potential of the isolated strains. A total of 2,006 samples (432 food samples and 1,574 environmental swabs) were collected between March 2013 and March 2014 from 48 food business operators (FBOs) belonging to different production sectors (dairy, fish, meat, and fresh-cut vegetable). Six of the forty-eight FBOs had samples positive for L. ivanovii on at least one sampling occasion. L. ivanovii was present in fifteen samples (fourteen environmental samples and one food sample). All but one of those positive samples derived from the dairy sector, where L. ivanovii prevalence was 1.7%. Six distinguishable pulsotypes were obtained by PFGE analysis, with one pulsotype being persistent in the environment of a dairy food business. Sequence analysis of the sigB gene showed that fourteen isolates belonged to L. ivanovii subsp. londoniensis, while only one isolate was L. ivanovii subsp. ivanovii. Cell invasion assays demonstrated that the majority of L. ivanovii strains were comparable to L. monocytogenes EGDe in their ability to invade CACO-2 epithelial cells whilst four isolates had significantly higher invasion efficiencies. PMID:26543856

  2. Occurrence, Persistence, and Virulence Potential of Listeria ivanovii in Foods and Food Processing Environments in the Republic of Ireland

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Avelino Alvarez-Ordóñez

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available The aim of this study was to assess the occurrence of L. ivanovii in foods and food processing environments in Ireland, to track persistence, and to characterize the disease causing potential of the isolated strains. A total of 2,006 samples (432 food samples and 1,574 environmental swabs were collected between March 2013 and March 2014 from 48 food business operators (FBOs belonging to different production sectors (dairy, fish, meat, and fresh-cut vegetable. Six of the forty-eight FBOs had samples positive for L. ivanovii on at least one sampling occasion. L. ivanovii was present in fifteen samples (fourteen environmental samples and one food sample. All but one of those positive samples derived from the dairy sector, where L. ivanovii prevalence was 1.7%. Six distinguishable pulsotypes were obtained by PFGE analysis, with one pulsotype being persistent in the environment of a dairy food business. Sequence analysis of the sigB gene showed that fourteen isolates belonged to L. ivanovii subsp. londoniensis, while only one isolate was L. ivanovii subsp. ivanovii. Cell invasion assays demonstrated that the majority of L. ivanovii strains were comparable to L. monocytogenes EGDe in their ability to invade CACO-2 epithelial cells whilst four isolates had significantly higher invasion efficiencies.

  3. The effects of modeled microgravity on growth kinetics, antibiotic susceptibility, cold growth, and the virulence potential of a Yersinia pestis ymoA-deficient mutant and its isogenic parental strain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lawal, Abidat; Kirtley, Michelle L; van Lier, Christina J; Erova, Tatiana E; Kozlova, Elena V; Sha, Jian; Chopra, Ashok K; Rosenzweig, Jason A

    2013-09-01

    Previously, we reported that there was no enhancement in the virulence potential (as measured by cell culture infections) of the bacterial pathogen Yersinia pestis (YP) following modeled microgravity/clinorotation growth. We have now further characterized the effects of clinorotation (CR) on YP growth kinetics, antibiotic sensitivity, cold growth, and YP's virulence potential in a murine model of infection. Surprisingly, none of the aforementioned phenotypes were altered. To better understand why CR did not enhance YP's virulence potential as it did for other bacterial pathogens, a YP ΔymoA isogenic mutant in the KIM/D27 background strain that is unable to produce the histone-like YmoA protein and influences DNA topography was used in both cell culture and murine models of infection. YmoA represses type three secretion system (T3SS) virulence gene expression in the yersiniae. Similar to our CR-grown parental YP strain data, the CR-grown ΔymoA mutant induced reduced HeLa cell cytotoxicity with concomitantly decreased Yersinia outer protein E (YopE) and low calcium response V (LcrV) antigen production and secretion. Important, however, were our findings that, although no significant differences were observed in survival of mice infected intraperitoneally with either normal gravity (NG)- or CR-grown parental YP, the ΔymoA mutant induced significantly more mortality in infected mice than did the parental strain following CR growth. Taken together, our data demonstrate that CR did enhance the virulence potential of the YP ΔymoA mutant in a murine infection model (relative to the CR-grown parental strain), despite inducing less HeLa cell rounding in our cell culture infection assay due to reduced T3SS activity. Therefore, CR, which induces a unique type of bacterial stress, might be enhancing YP's virulence potential in vivo through a T3SS-independent mechanism when the histone-like YmoA protein is absent.

  4. Host adaptation of Chlamydia pecorum towards low virulence evident in co-evolution of the ompA, incA, and ORF663 Loci.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mohamad, Khalil Yousef; Kaltenboeck, Bernhard; Rahman, Kh Shamsur; Magnino, Simone; Sachse, Konrad; Rodolakis, Annie

    2014-01-01

    Chlamydia (C.) pecorum, an obligate intracellular bacterium, may cause severe diseases in ruminants, swine and koalas, although asymptomatic infections are the norm. Recently, we identified genetic polymorphisms in the ompA, incA and ORF663 genes that potentially differentiate between high-virulence C. pecorum isolates from diseased animals and low-virulence isolates from asymptomatic animals. Here, we expand these findings by including additional ruminant, swine, and koala strains. Coding tandem repeats (CTRs) at the incA locus encoded a variable number of repeats of APA or AGA amino acid motifs. Addition of any non-APA/AGA repeat motif, such as APEVPA, APAVPA, APE, or APAPE, associated with low virulence (PincA CTRs (P = 0.0028). In ORF663, high numbers of 15-mer CTRs correlated with low virulence (P = 0.0001). Correction for ompA phylogram position in ORF663 and incA abolished the correlation between genetic changes and virulence, demonstrating co-evolution of ompA, incA, and ORF663 towards low virulence. Pairwise divergence of ompA, incA, and ORF663 among isolates from healthy animals was significantly higher than among strains isolated from diseased animals (P≤10-5), confirming the longer evolutionary path traversed by low-virulence strains. All three markers combined identified 43 unique strains and 4 pairs of identical strains among all 57 isolates tested, demonstrating the suitability of these markers for epidemiological investigations.

  5. The attentional blink reveals serial working memory encoding: evidence from virtual and human event-related potentials.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Craston, Patrick; Wyble, Brad; Chennu, Srivas; Bowman, Howard

    2009-03-01

    Observers often miss a second target (T2) if it follows an identified first target item (T1) within half a second in rapid serial visual presentation (RSVP), a finding termed the attentional blink. If two targets are presented in immediate succession, however, accuracy is excellent (Lag 1 sparing). The resource sharing hypothesis proposes a dynamic distribution of resources over a time span of up to 600 msec during the attentional blink. In contrast, the ST(2) model argues that working memory encoding is serial during the attentional blink and that, due to joint consolidation, Lag 1 is the only case where resources are shared. Experiment 1 investigates the P3 ERP component evoked by targets in RSVP. The results suggest that, in this context, P3 amplitude is an indication of bottom-up strength rather than a measure of cognitive resource allocation. Experiment 2, employing a two-target paradigm, suggests that T1 consolidation is not affected by the presentation of T2 during the attentional blink. However, if targets are presented in immediate succession (Lag 1 sparing), they are jointly encoded into working memory. We use the ST(2) model's neural network implementation, which replicates a range of behavioral results related to the attentional blink, to generate "virtual ERPs" by summing across activation traces. We compare virtual to human ERPs and show how the results suggest a serial nature of working memory encoding as implied by the ST(2) model.

  6. Accessory genes confer a high replication rate to virulent feline immunodeficiency virus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Troyer, Ryan M; Thompson, Jesse; Elder, John H; VandeWoude, Sue

    2013-07-01

    Feline immunodeficiency virus (FIV) is a lentivirus that causes AIDS in domestic cats, similar to human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)/AIDS in humans. The FIV accessory protein Vif abrogates the inhibition of infection by cat APOBEC3 restriction factors. FIV also encodes a multifunctional OrfA accessory protein that has characteristics similar to HIV Tat, Vpu, Vpr, and Nef. To examine the role of vif and orfA accessory genes in FIV replication and pathogenicity, we generated chimeras between two FIV molecular clones with divergent disease potentials: a highly pathogenic isolate that replicates rapidly in vitro and is associated with significant immunopathology in vivo, FIV-C36 (referred to here as high-virulence FIV [HV-FIV]), and a less-pathogenic strain, FIV-PPR (referred to here as low-virulence FIV [LV-FIV]). Using PCR-driven overlap extension, we produced viruses in which vif, orfA, or both genes from virulent HV-FIV replaced equivalent genes in LV-FIV. The generation of these chimeras is more straightforward in FIV than in primate lentiviruses, since FIV accessory gene open reading frames have very little overlap with other genes. All three chimeric viruses exhibited increased replication kinetics in vitro compared to the replication kinetics of LV-FIV. Chimeras containing HV-Vif or Vif/OrfA had replication rates equivalent to those of the virulent HV-FIV parental virus. Furthermore, small interfering RNA knockdown of feline APOBEC3 genes resulted in equalization of replication rates between LV-FIV and LV-FIV encoding HV-FIV Vif. These findings demonstrate that Vif-APOBEC interactions play a key role in controlling the replication and pathogenicity of this immunodeficiency-inducing virus in its native host species and that accessory genes act as mediators of lentiviral strain-specific virulence.

  7. Displacement encoder

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hesketh, T.G.

    1983-01-01

    In an optical encoder, light from an optical fibre input A is encoded by means of the encoding disc and is subsequently collected for transmission via optical fibre B. At some point in the optical path between the fibres A and B, the light is separated into component form by means of a filtering or dispersive system and each colour component is associated with a respective one of the coding channels of the disc. In this way, the significance of each bit of the coded information is represented by a respective colour thereby enabling the components to be re-combined for transmission by the fibre B without loss of information. (author)

  8. A comprehensive study on the role of the Yersinia pestis virulence markers in an animal model of pneumonic plague

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kaman, W.E.; Hawkey, S.; Kleij, D. van der; Broekhuijsen, M.P.; Silman, N.J.; Bikker, F.J.

    2011-01-01

    We determined the role of Yersinia pestis virulence markers in an animal model of pneumonic plague. Eleven strains of Y. pestis were characterized using PCR assays to detect the presence of known virulence genes both encoded by the three plasmids as well as chromosomal markers. The virulence of all

  9. Differences in virulence markers between Helicobacter pylori strains from Iraq and those from Iran: potential importance of regional differences in H. pylori-associated disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hussein, Nawfal R; Mohammadi, Marjan; Talebkhan, Yeganeh; Doraghi, Masoumeh; Letley, Darren P; Muhammad, Merdan K; Argent, Richard H; Atherton, John C

    2008-05-01

    Helicobacter pylori causes peptic ulceration and gastric adenocarcinoma; the latter is common in Iran but not in Iraq. We hypothesized that more virulent H. pylori strains may be found in Iran than in Iraq and so compared established and newly described virulence factors in strains from these countries. We studied 59 unselected dyspeptic patients from Iran and 49 from Iraq. cagA was found in similar proportions of strains from both countries (76% in Iran versus 71% in Iraq) and was significantly associated with peptic ulcer disease in Iraq (P dupA was found in similar proportions of Iranian and Iraqi strains (38% and 32%, respectively) and was associated with peptic ulceration in Iraqi patients (P virulence factors similar to those in Western countries. The presence of cagA with more phosphorylation motifs in Iranian strains may contribute to the higher incidence of gastric cancer. However, the association between strain virulence markers and disease in Iraq but not Iran suggests that other host and environmental factors may be more important in the disease-prone Iranian population.

  10. Secretome Analysis Identifies Potential Pathogenicity/Virulence Factors of Tilletia indica, a Quarantined Fungal Pathogen Inciting Karnal Bunt Disease in Wheat.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pandey, Vishakha; Singh, Manoj; Pandey, Dinesh; Marla, Soma; Kumar, Anil

    2018-04-01

    Tilletia indica is a smut fungus that incites Karnal bunt in wheat. It has been considered as quarantine pest in more than 70 countries. Despite its quarantine significance, there is meager knowledge regarding the molecular mechanisms of disease pathogenesis. Moreover, various disease management strategies have proven futile. Development of effective disease management strategy requires identification of pathogenicity/virulence factors. With this aim, the present study was conducted to compare the secretomes of T. indica isolates, that is, highly (TiK) and low (TiP) virulent isolates. About 120 and 95 protein spots were detected reproducibly in TiK and TiP secretome gel images. Nineteen protein spots, which were consistently observed as upregulated/differential in the secretome of TiK isolate, were selected for their identification by MALDI-TOF/TOF. Identified proteins exhibited homology with fungal proteins playing important role in fungal adhesion, penetration, invasion, protection against host-derived reactive oxygen species, production of virulence factors, cellular signaling, and degradation of host cell wall proteins and antifungal proteins. These results were complemented with T. indica genome sequence leading to identification of candidate pathogenicity/virulence factors homologs that were further subjected to sequence- and structure-based functional annotation. Thus, present study reports the first comparative secretome analysis of T. indica for identification of pathogenicity/virulence factors. This would provide insights into pathogenic mechanisms of T. indica and aid in devising effective disease management strategies. © 2018 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  11. Single-cell genomics reveals pyrrolysine-encoding potential in members of uncultivated archaeal candidate division MSBL1

    KAUST Repository

    Guan, Yue; Haroon, Mohamed; Alam, Intikhab; Ferry, James G.; Stingl, Ulrich

    2017-01-01

    Pyrrolysine (Pyl), the 22nd canonical amino acid, is only decoded and synthesized by a limited number of organisms in the domains Archaea and Bacteria. Pyl is encoded by the amber codon UAG, typically a stop codon. To date, all known Pyl-decoding archaea are able to carry out methylotrophic methanogenesis. The functionality of methylamine methyltransferases, an important component of corrinoid-dependent methyltransfer reactions, depends on the presence of Pyl. Here, we present a putative pyl gene cluster obtained from single-cell genomes of the archaeal Mediterranean Sea Brine Lakes group 1 (MSBL1) from the Red Sea. Functional annotation of the MSBL1 single cell amplified genomes (SAGs) also revealed a complete corrinoid-dependent methyl-transfer pathway suggesting that members of MSBL1 may possibly be capable of synthesizing Pyl and metabolizing methylated amines. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.

  12. Sensitization with vaccinia virus encoding H5N1 hemagglutinin restores immune potential against H5N1 influenza virus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yasui, Fumihiko; Itoh, Yasushi; Ikejiri, Ai; Kitabatake, Masahiro; Sakaguchi, Nobuo; Munekata, Keisuke; Shichinohe, Shintaro; Hayashi, Yukiko; Ishigaki, Hirohito; Nakayama, Misako; Sakoda, Yoshihiro; Kida, Hiroshi; Ogasawara, Kazumasa; Kohara, Michinori

    2016-11-28

    H5N1 highly pathogenic avian influenza (H5N1 HPAI) virus causes elevated mortality compared with seasonal influenza viruses like H1N1 pandemic influenza (H1N1 pdm) virus. We identified a mechanism associated with the severe symptoms seen with H5N1 HPAI virus infection. H5N1 HPAI virus infection induced a decrease of dendritic cell number in the splenic extrafollicular T-cell zone and impaired formation of the outer layers of B-cell follicles, resulting in insufficient levels of antibody production after infection. However, in animals vaccinated with a live recombinant vaccinia virus expressing the H5 hemagglutinin, infection with H5N1 HPAI virus induced parafollicular dendritic cell accumulation and efficient antibody production. These results indicate that a recombinant vaccinia encoding H5 hemagglutinin gene does not impair dendritic cell recruitment and can be a useful vaccine candidate.

  13. Single-cell genomics reveals pyrrolysine-encoding potential in members of uncultivated archaeal candidate division MSBL1

    KAUST Repository

    Guan, Yue

    2017-05-11

    Pyrrolysine (Pyl), the 22nd canonical amino acid, is only decoded and synthesized by a limited number of organisms in the domains Archaea and Bacteria. Pyl is encoded by the amber codon UAG, typically a stop codon. To date, all known Pyl-decoding archaea are able to carry out methylotrophic methanogenesis. The functionality of methylamine methyltransferases, an important component of corrinoid-dependent methyltransfer reactions, depends on the presence of Pyl. Here, we present a putative pyl gene cluster obtained from single-cell genomes of the archaeal Mediterranean Sea Brine Lakes group 1 (MSBL1) from the Red Sea. Functional annotation of the MSBL1 single cell amplified genomes (SAGs) also revealed a complete corrinoid-dependent methyl-transfer pathway suggesting that members of MSBL1 may possibly be capable of synthesizing Pyl and metabolizing methylated amines. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.

  14. Hunger for iron: the alternative siderophore iron scavenging systems in highly virulent Yersinia.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alexander eRakin

    2012-11-01

    Full Text Available Low molecular weight siderophores are used by many living organisms to scavenge scarcely available ferric iron. Presence of at least a single siderophore-based iron acquisition system is usually acknowledged as a virulence-associated trait and a prerequisite to become an efficient and successful pathogen. Currently it is assumed that yersiniabactin (Ybt is the solely functional endogenous siderophore iron uptake system in highly virulent Yersinia (Yersinia pestis, Y. pseudotuberculosis and Y. enterocolitica biotype 1B. Genes responsible for biosynthesis, transport and regulation of the yersiniabactin (ybt production are clustered on a mobile genetic element, the High Pathogenicity Island (HPI that is responsible for broad dissemination of the ybt genes in Enterobacteriaceae. However, the ybt gene cluster is absent from nearly half of Y. pseudotuberculosis O3 isolates and epidemic Y. pseudotuberculosis O1 isolates responsible for the Far East Scarlet-like Fever. Several potential siderophore-mediated iron uptake gene clusters are documented in Yersinia genomes, however neither of them have been proven to be functional. It has been suggested that at least two siderophores alternative to Ybt may operate in the highly virulent Yersinia pestis / Y. pseudotuberculosis group, and are referred to as pseudochelin (Pch and yersiniachelin (Ych. Furthermore, most sporadic Y. pseudotuberculosis O1 strains possess gene clusters encoding all three iron scavenging systems. Thus, the Ybt system appears not to be the sole endogenous siderophore iron uptake system in the highly virulent yersiniae and may be efficiently substituted and / or supplemented by alternative iron scavenging systems.

  15. The Regulatory Small RNA MarS Supports Virulence of Streptococcus pyogenes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pappesch, Roberto; Warnke, Philipp; Mikkat, Stefan; Normann, Jana; Wisniewska-Kucper, Aleksandra; Huschka, Franziska; Wittmann, Maja; Khani, Afsaneh; Schwengers, Oliver; Oehmcke-Hecht, Sonja; Hain, Torsten; Kreikemeyer, Bernd; Patenge, Nadja

    2017-09-25

    Small regulatory RNAs (sRNAs) play a role in the control of bacterial virulence gene expression. In this study, we investigated an sRNA that was identified in Streptococcus pyogenes (group A Streptococcus, GAS) but is conserved throughout various streptococci. In a deletion strain, expression of mga, the gene encoding the multiple virulence gene regulator, was reduced. Accordingly, transcript and proteome analyses revealed decreased expression of several Mga-activated genes. Therefore, and because the sRNA was shown to interact with the 5' UTR of the mga transcript in a gel-shift assay, we designated it MarS for m ga-activating regulatory sRNA. Down-regulation of important virulence factors, including the antiphagocytic M-protein, led to increased susceptibility of the deletion strain to phagocytosis and reduced adherence to human keratinocytes. In a mouse infection model, the marS deletion mutant showed reduced dissemination to the liver, kidney, and spleen. Additionally, deletion of marS led to increased tolerance towards oxidative stress. Our in vitro and in vivo results indicate a modulating effect of MarS on virulence gene expression and on the pathogenic potential of GAS.

  16. Emergence of non-albicans Candida among candidal vulvovaginitis cases and study of their potential virulence factors, from a tertiary care center, North India.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kumari, Varsha; Banerjee, Tuhina; Kumar, Pankaj; Pandey, Sulekha; Tilak, Ragini

    2013-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to determine the prevalence of various Candida species and study some of their virulence factors among thevulvovaginal candidiasis(VVC)patients. The study was conducted in a Tertiary Care University Hospital in North India. This study was carried out prospectively for a period of 1 year. High vaginal swabs (HVSs) were collected from women in childbearing age group attending the gynecology and obstetrics out-patient departments with the complaints suggestive of vulvovaginitis. Samples were plated on Sabouraud's dextrose agar slope. Candida spp. isolated was further speciated based on microscopy, biochemical tests and culture characteristics on special media. Virulence factors of these strains were determined by biofilm formation and phospholipase activity. A total of 464 HVS from 232 patients with the complaints of vulvovaginitis were included in this study. Following laboratory workup, 71 specimens were positive for genus Candida (30.6%). Further speciation showed 32.4% as Candida albicans, 45.07% Candida parapsilosis and 22.53% of Candida glabrata. Biofilm production was shown by 50 candidal strains (70.4%) and phospholipase activity was given by 41 candidal strains (57.74%). Our study suggests increasing prevalence of non-albicans Candida among the VVC cases along with their virulence factors. Therefore, we recommend that microbiological investigation upto species level should be mandatory to determine the emergence of non-albicans Candida as a major cause of VVC.

  17. Emergence of non-albicans Candida among candidal vulvovaginitis cases and study of their potential virulence factors, from a tertiary care center, North India

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Varsha Kumari

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Purpose: The purpose of this study was to determine the prevalence of various Candida species and study some of their virulence factors among thevulvovaginal candidiasis(VVCpatients. Study Design and Settings: The study was conducted in a Tertiary Care University Hospital in North India. Materials and Methods: This study was carried out prospectively for a period of 1 year. High vaginal swabs (HVSs were collected from women in childbearing age group attending the gynecology and obstetrics out-patient departments with the complaints suggestive of vulvovaginitis. Samples were plated on Sabouraud′s dextrose agar slope. Candida spp. isolated was further speciated based on microscopy, biochemical tests and culture characteristics on special media. Virulence factors of these strains were determined by biofilm formation and phospholipase activity. Result: A total of 464 HVS from 232 patients with the complaints of vulvovaginitis were included in this study. Following laboratory workup, 71 specimens were positive for genus Candida (30.6%. Further speciation showed 32.4% as Candida albicans, 45.07% Candida parapsilosis and 22.53% of Candida glabrata. Biofilm production was shown by 50 candidal strains (70.4% and phospholipase activity was given by 41 candidal strains (57.74%. Conclusion: Our study suggests increasing prevalence of non-albicans Candida among the VVC cases along with their virulence factors. Therefore, we recommend that microbiological investigation upto species level should be mandatory to determine the emergence of non-albicans Candida as a major cause of VVC.

  18. Contribution of the nos-pdt operon to virulence phenotypes in methicillin-sensitive Staphylococcus aureus.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    April M Sapp

    Full Text Available Nitric oxide (NO is emerging as an important regulator of bacterial stress resistance, biofilm development, and virulence. One potential source of endogenous NO production in the pathogen Staphylococcus aureus is its NO-synthase (saNOS enzyme, encoded by the nos gene. Although a role for saNOS in oxidative stress resistance, antibiotic resistance, and virulence has been recently-described, insights into the regulation of nos expression and saNOS enzyme activity remain elusive. To this end, transcriptional analysis of the nos gene in S. aureus strain UAMS-1 was performed, which revealed that nos expression increases during low-oxygen growth and is growth-phase dependent. Furthermore, nos is co-transcribed with a downstream gene, designated pdt, which encodes a prephenate dehydratase (PDT enzyme involved in phenylalanine biosynthesis. Deletion of pdt significantly impaired the ability of UAMS-1 to grow in chemically-defined media lacking phenylalanine, confirming the function of this enzyme. Bioinformatics analysis revealed that the operon organization of nos-pdt appears to be unique to the staphylococci. As described for other S. aureus nos mutants, inactivation of nos in UAMS-1 conferred sensitivity to oxidative stress, while deletion of pdt did not affect this phenotype. The nos mutant also displayed reduced virulence in a murine sepsis infection model, and increased carotenoid pigmentation when cultured on agar plates, both previously-undescribed nos mutant phenotypes. Utilizing the fluorescent stain 4-Amino-5-Methylamino-2',7'-Difluorofluorescein (DAF-FM diacetate, decreased levels of intracellular NO/reactive nitrogen species (RNS were detected in the nos mutant on agar plates. These results reinforce the important role of saNOS in S. aureus physiology and virulence, and have identified an in vitro growth condition under which saNOS activity appears to be upregulated. However, the significance of the operon organization of nos-pdt and

  19. Temporal dynamics of attention during encoding vs. maintenance of working memory: complementary views from event-related potentials and alpha-band oscillations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Myers, Nicholas E.; Walther, Lena; Wallis, George; Stokes, Mark G.; Nobre, Anna C.

    2015-01-01

    Working memory (WM) is strongly influenced by attention. In visual working-memory tasks, recall performance can be improved by an attention-guiding cue presented before encoding (precue) or during maintenance (retrocue). Although precues and retrocues recruit a similar fronto-parietal control network, the two are likely to exhibit some processing differences, since precues invite anticipation of upcoming information, while retrocues may guide prioritisation, protection, and selection of information already in mind. Here we explored the behavioral and electrophysiological differences between precueing and retrocueing in a new visual working-memory task designed to permit a direct comparison between cueing conditions. We found marked differences in event-related potential (ERP) profiles between the precue and retrocue conditions. In line with precues primarily generating an anticipatory shift of attention toward the location of an upcoming item, we found a robust lateralization in late cue-evoked potentials associated with target anticipation. Retrocues elicited a different pattern of ERPs that was compatible with an early selection mechanism, but not with stimulus anticipation. In contrast to the distinct ERP patterns, alpha band (8-14 Hz) lateralization was indistinguishable between cue types (reflecting, in both conditions, the location of the cued item). We speculate that whereas alpha-band lateralization after a precue is likely to enable anticipatory attention, lateralization after a retrocue may instead enable the controlled spatiotopic access to recently encoded visual information. PMID:25244118

  20. Mechanosensing regulates virulence in Escherichia coli O157:H7.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Islam, Md Shahidul; Krachler, Anne Marie

    2016-01-01

    Enterohemorrhagic Escherichia coli O157:H7 is a food-borne pathogen transmitted via the fecal-oral route, and can cause bloody diarrhea and hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS) in the human host. Although a range of colonization factors, Shiga toxins and a type III secretion system (T3SS) all contribute to disease development, the locus of enterocyte effacement (LEE) encoded T3SS is responsible for the formation of lesions in the intestinal tract. While a variety of chemical cues in the host environment are known to up-regulate LEE expression, we recently demonstrated that changes in physical forces at the site of attachment are required for localized, full induction of the system and thus spatial regulation of virulence in the intestinal tract. Here, we discuss our findings in the light of other recent studies describing mechanosensing of the host and force-dependent induction of virulence mechanisms. We discuss potential mechanisms of mechanosensing and mechanotransduction, and the level of conservation across bacterial species.

  1. Incidence of virulence determinants in clinical Enterococcus faecalis and Enterococcus faecium isolates collected in Bulgaria

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tanya Strateva

    2016-03-01

    Conclusion: Most E. faecalis attaches to abiotic surfaces in hospital environment, which correlates with higher prevalence of gene encoding for virulence factors involved in biofilm formation, such as enterococcal surface protein, aggregation substance, and gelatinase. The intestinal tract is an important reservoir for opportunistic enterococcal pathogens and allows them to access infectious sites through different virulence factors, demonstrated in outpatient isolates in this study.

  2. Propofol and midazolam inhibit conscious memory processes very soon after encoding: an event-related potential study of familiarity and recollection in volunteers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Veselis, Robert A; Pryor, Kane O; Reinsel, Ruth A; Li, Yuelin; Mehta, Meghana; Johnson, Ray

    2009-02-01

    Intravenous drugs active via gamma-aminobutyric acid receptors to produce memory impairment during conscious sedation. Memory function was assessed using event-related potentials (ERPs) while drug was present. The continuous recognition task measured recognition of photographs from working (6 s) and long-term (27 s) memory while ERPs were recorded from Cz (familiarity recognition) and Pz electrodes (recollection recognition). Volunteer participants received sequential doses of one of placebo (n = 11), 0.45 and 0.9 microg/ml propofol (n = 10), 20 and 40 ng/ml midazolam (n = 12), 1.5 and 3 microg/ml thiopental (n = 11), or 0.25 and 0.4 ng/ml dexmedetomidine (n = 11). End-of-day yes/no recognition 225 min after the end of drug infusion tested memory retention of pictures encoded on the continuous recognition tasks. Active drugs increased reaction times and impaired memory on the continuous recognition task equally, except for a greater effect of midazolam (P memory for familiarity (P = 0.03) and possibly for recollection processes (P = 0.12). Propofol shifted ERP amplitudes to smaller voltages (P memory but not working memory. ERP measures of memory revealed different pathways to end-of-day memory loss as early as 27 s after encoding.

  3. Chemical Inhibition of Kynureninase Reduces Pseudomonas aeruginosa Quorum Sensing and Virulence Factor Expression.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kasper, Stephen H; Bonocora, Richard P; Wade, Joseph T; Musah, Rabi Ann; Cady, Nathaniel C

    2016-04-15

    The opportunistic pathogen Pseudomonas aeruginosa utilizes multiple quorum sensing (QS) pathways to coordinate an arsenal of virulence factors. We previously identified several cysteine-based compounds inspired by natural products from the plant Petiveria alliacea which are capable of antagonizing multiple QS circuits as well as reducing P. aeruginosa biofilm formation. To understand the global effects of such compounds on virulence factor production and elucidate their mechanism of action, RNA-seq transcriptomic analysis was performed on P. aeruginosa PAO1 exposed to S-phenyl-l-cysteine sulfoxide, the most potent inhibitor from the prior study. Exposure to this inhibitor down-regulated expression of several QS-regulated virulence operons (e.g., phenazine biosynthesis, type VI secretion systems). Interestingly, many genes that were differentially regulated pertain to the related metabolic pathways that yield precursors of pyochelin, tricarboxylic acid cycle intermediates, phenazines, and Pseudomonas quinolone signal (PQS). Activation of the MexT-regulon was also indicated, including the multidrug efflux pump encoded by mexEF-oprN, which has previously been shown to inhibit QS and pathogenicity. Deeper investigation of the metabolites involved in these systems revealed that S-phenyl-l-cysteine sulfoxide has structural similarity to kynurenine, a precursor of anthranilate, which is critical for P. aeruginosa virulence. By supplementing exogenous anthranilate, the QS-inhibitory effect was reversed. Finally, it was shown that S-phenyl-l-cysteine sulfoxide competitively inhibits P. aeruginosa kynureninase (KynU) activity in vitro and reduces PQS production in vivo. The kynurenine pathway has been implicated in P. aeruginosa QS and virulence factor expression; however, this is the first study to show that targeted inhibition of KynU affects P. aeruginosa gene expression and QS, suggesting a potential antivirulence strategy.

  4. Alignment-independent comparison of binding sites based on DrugScore potential fields encoded by 3D Zernike descriptors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nisius, Britta; Gohlke, Holger

    2012-09-24

    Analyzing protein binding sites provides detailed insights into the biological processes proteins are involved in, e.g., into drug-target interactions, and so is of crucial importance in drug discovery. Herein, we present novel alignment-independent binding site descriptors based on DrugScore potential fields. The potential fields are transformed to a set of information-rich descriptors using a series expansion in 3D Zernike polynomials. The resulting Zernike descriptors show a promising performance in detecting similarities among proteins with low pairwise sequence identities that bind identical ligands, as well as within subfamilies of one target class. Furthermore, the Zernike descriptors are robust against structural variations among protein binding sites. Finally, the Zernike descriptors show a high data compression power, and computing similarities between binding sites based on these descriptors is highly efficient. Consequently, the Zernike descriptors are a useful tool for computational binding site analysis, e.g., to predict the function of novel proteins, off-targets for drug candidates, or novel targets for known drugs.

  5. The effect of mutation on Rhodococcus equi virulence plasmid gene expression and mouse virulence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ren, Jun; Prescott, John F

    2004-11-15

    An 81 kb virulence plasmid containing a pathogenicity island (PI) plays a crucial role in the pathogenesis of Rhodococcus equi pneumonia in foals but its specific function in virulence and regulation of plasmid-encoded virulence genes is unclear. Using a LacZ selection marker developed for R. equi in this study, in combination with an apramycin resistance gene, an efficient two-stage homologous recombination targeted gene mutation procedure was used to mutate three virulence plasmid genes, a LysR regulatory gene homologue (ORF4), a ResD-like two-component response regulator homologue (ORF8), and a gene (ORF10) of unknown function that is highly expressed by R. equi inside macrophages, as well as the chromosomal gene operon, phoPR. Virulence testing by liver clearance after intravenous injection in mice showed that the ORF4 and ORF8 mutants were fully attenuated, that the phoPR mutant was hypervirulent, and that virulence of the ORF10 mutant remained unchanged. A virulence plasmid DNA microarray was used to compare the plasmid gene expression profile of each of the four gene-targeted mutants against the parental R. equi strain. Changes were limited to PI genes and gene induction was observed for all mutants, suggesting that expression of virulence plasmid genes is dominated by a negative regulatory network. The finding of attenuation of ORF4 and ORF8 mutants despite enhanced transcription of vapA suggests that factors other than VapA are important for full expression of virulence. ORF1, a putative Lsr antigen gene, was strongly and similarly induced in all mutants, implying a common regulatory pathway affecting this gene for all four mutated genes. ORF8 is apparently the centre of this common pathway. Two distinct highly correlated gene induction patterns were observed, that of the ORF4 and ORF8 mutants, and that of the ORF10 and phoPR mutants. The gene induction pattern distinguishing these two groups paralleled their virulence in mice.

  6. Regulation of virulence by a two-component system in group B streptococcus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jiang, Sheng-Mei; Cieslewicz, Michael J; Kasper, Dennis L; Wessels, Michael R

    2005-02-01

    Group B Streptococcus (GBS) is frequently carried in the gastrointestinal or genitourinary tract as a commensal organism, yet it has the potential to cause life-threatening infection in newborn infants, pregnant women, and individuals with chronic illness. Regulation of virulence factor expression may affect whether GBS behaves as an asymptomatic colonizer or an invasive pathogen, but little is known about how such factors are controlled in GBS. We now report the characterization of a GBS locus that encodes a two-component regulatory system similar to CsrRS (or CovRS) in Streptococcus pyogenes. Inactivation of csrR, encoding the putative response regulator, in two unrelated wild-type strains of GBS resulted in a marked increase in production of beta-hemolysin/cytolysin and a striking decrease in production of CAMP factor, an unrelated cytolytic toxin. Quantitative RNA hybridization experiments revealed that these two phenotypes were associated with a marked increase and decrease in expression of the corresponding genes, cylE and cfb, respectively. The CsrR mutant strains also displayed increased expression of scpB encoding C5a peptidase. Similar, but less marked, changes in gene expression were observed in CsrS (putative sensor component) mutants, evidence that CsrR and CsrS constitute a functional two-component system. Experimental infection studies in mice demonstrated reduced virulence of both CsrR and CsrS mutant strains relative to the wild type. Together, these results indicate that CsrRS regulates expression of multiple GBS virulence determinants and is likely to play an important role in GBS pathogenesis.

  7. The Saccharomyces cerevisiae RAD18 gene encodes a protein that contains potential zinc finger domains for nucleic acid binding and a putative nucleotide binding sequence

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Jones, J.S.; Prakash, L. (Univ. of Rochester School of Medicine, NY (USA)); Weber, S. (Kodak Research Park, Rochester, NY (USA))

    1988-07-25

    The RAD18 gene of Saccharomyces cerevisiae is required for postreplication repair of UV damaged DNA. The authors have isolated the RAD18 gene, determined its nucleotide sequence and examined if deletion mutations of this gene show different or more pronounced phenotypic effects than the previously described point mutations. The RAD18 gene open reading frame encodes a protein of 487 amino acids, with a calculated molecular weight of 55,512. The RAD18 protein contains three potential zinc finger domains for nucleic acid binding, and a putative nucleotide binding sequence that is present in many proteins that bind and hydrolyze ATP. The DNA binding and nucleotide binding activities could enable the RAD18 protein to bind damaged sites in the template DNA with high affinity. Alternatively, or in addition, RAD18 protein may be a transcriptional regulator. The RAD18 deletion mutation resembles the previously described point mutations in its effects on viability, DNA repair, UV mutagenesis, and sporulation.

  8. Sporangiospore size dimorphism is linked to virulence of Mucor circinelloides.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Charles H; Cervantes, Maria; Springer, Deborah J; Boekhout, Teun; Ruiz-Vazquez, Rosa M; Torres-Martinez, Santiago R; Heitman, Joseph; Lee, Soo Chan

    2011-06-01

    Mucor circinelloides is a zygomycete fungus and an emerging opportunistic pathogen in immunocompromised patients, especially transplant recipients and in some cases otherwise healthy individuals. We have discovered a novel example of size dimorphism linked to virulence. M. circinelloides is a heterothallic fungus: (+) sex allele encodes SexP and (-) sex allele SexM, both of which are HMG domain protein sex determinants. M. circinelloides f. lusitanicus (Mcl) (-) mating type isolates produce larger asexual sporangiospores that are more virulent in the wax moth host compared to (+) isolates that produce smaller less virulent sporangiospores. The larger sporangiospores germinate inside and lyse macrophages, whereas the smaller sporangiospores do not. sexMΔ mutants are sterile and still produce larger virulent sporangiospores, suggesting that either the sex locus is not involved in virulence/spore size or the sexP allele plays an inhibitory role. Phylogenetic analysis supports that at least three extant subspecies populate the M. circinelloides complex in nature: Mcl, M. circinelloides f. griseocyanus, and M. circinelloides f. circinelloides (Mcc). Mcc was found to be more prevalent among clinical Mucor isolates, and more virulent than Mcl in a diabetic murine model in contrast to the wax moth host. The M. circinelloides sex locus encodes an HMG domain protein (SexP for plus and SexM for minus mating types) flanked by genes encoding triose phosphate transporter (TPT) and RNA helicase homologs. The borders of the sex locus between the three subspecies differ: the Mcg sex locus includes the promoters of both the TPT and the RNA helicase genes, whereas the Mcl and Mcc sex locus includes only the TPT gene promoter. Mating between subspecies was restricted compared to mating within subspecies. These findings demonstrate that spore size dimorphism is linked to virulence of M. circinelloides species and that plasticity of the sex locus and adaptations in pathogenicity have

  9. Personal significance is encoded automatically by the human brain: an event-related potential study with ringtones.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roye, Anja; Jacobsen, Thomas; Schröger, Erich

    2007-08-01

    In this human event-related brain potential (ERP) study, we have used one's personal--relative to another person's--ringtone presented in a two-deviant passive oddball paradigm to investigate the long-term memory effects of self-selected personal significance of a sound on the automatic deviance detection and involuntary attention system. Our findings extend the knowledge of long-term effects usually reported in group-approaches in the domains of speech, music and environmental sounds. In addition to the usual mismatch negativity (MMN) and P3a component elicited by deviants in contrast to standard stimuli, we observed a posterior ERP deflection directly following the MMN for the personally significant deviant only. This specific impact of personal significance started around 200 ms after sound onset and involved neural generators that were different from the mere physical deviance detection mechanism. Whereas the early part of the P3a component was unaffected by personal significance, the late P3a was enhanced for the ERPs to the personal significant deviant suggesting that this stimulus was more powerful in attracting attention involuntarily. Following the involuntary attention switch, the personally significant stimulus elicited a widely-distributed negative deflection, probably reflecting further analysis of the significant sound involving evaluation of relevance or reorienting to the primary task. Our data show, that the personal significance of mobile phone and text message technology, which have developed as a major medium of communication in our modern world, prompts the formation of individual memory representations, which affect the processing of sounds that are not in the focus of attention.

  10. Genomic comparison of virulent and non-virulent Streptococcus agalactiae in fish.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Delannoy, C M J; Zadoks, R N; Crumlish, M; Rodgers, D; Lainson, F A; Ferguson, H W; Turnbull, J; Fontaine, M C

    2016-01-01

    Streptococcus agalactiae infections in fish are predominantly caused by beta-haemolytic strains of clonal complex (CC) 7, notably its namesake sequence type (ST) 7, or by non-haemolytic strains of CC552, including the globally distributed ST260. In contrast, CC23, including its namesake ST23, has been associated with a wide homeothermic and poikilothermic host range, but never with fish. The aim of this study was to determine whether ST23 is virulent in fish and to identify genomic markers of fish adaptation of S. agalactiae. Intraperitoneal challenge of Nile tilapia, Oreochromis niloticus (Linnaeus), showed that ST260 is lethal at doses down to 10(2) cfu per fish, whereas ST23 does not cause disease at 10(7) cfu per fish. Comparison of the genome sequence of ST260 and ST23 with those of strains derived from fish, cattle and humans revealed the presence of genomic elements that are unique to subpopulations of S. agalactiae that have the ability to infect fish (CC7 and CC552). These loci occurred in clusters exhibiting typical signatures of mobile genetic elements. PCR-based screening of a collection of isolates from multiple host species confirmed the association of selected genes with fish-derived strains. Several fish-associated genes encode proteins that potentially provide fitness in the aquatic environment. © 2014 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  11. Characterization of T-DNA insertion mutants with decreased virulence in the entomopathogenic fungus Beauveria bassiana JEF-007.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Sihyeon; Lee, Se Jin; Nai, Yu-Shin; Yu, Jeong Seon; Lee, Mi Rong; Yang, Yi-Ting; Kim, Jae Su

    2016-10-01

    The bean bug, Riptortus pedestris, is a major agricultural pest that reduces crop quality and value. Chemical pesticides have contributed to pest management, but resistance to these chemicals has significantly limited their use. Alternative strategies with different modes of action, such as entomopathogenic fungi, are therefore of great interest. Herein, we explored how entomopathogenic fungi can potentially be used to control the bean bug and focused on identifying virulence-related genes. Beauveria bassiana (JEF isolates) were assayed against bean bugs under laboratory conditions. One isolate, JEF-007, showed >80 % virulence by both spray and contact exposure methods. Agrobacterium tumefaciens-mediated transformation (AtMT) of JEF-007 generated 249 random transformants, two of which (B1-06 and C1-49) showed significantly reduced virulence against Tenebrio molitor and R. pedestris immatures. Both species were used for rapid screening of virulence-reduced mutants. The two transformants had different morphologies, conidial production, and thermotolerance than the wild type. To determine the localization of the randomly inserted T-DNA, thermal asymmetric interlaced (TAIL) PCR was conducted and analysis of the two clones found multiple T-DNA insertions (two in B1-06 and three in C1-49). Genes encoding complex I intermediate-associated protein 30 (CIA30) and the autophagy protein (Atg22) were possibly disrupted by the T-DNA insertion and might be involved in the virulence. This work provides a strong platform for future functional genetic studies of bean bug-pathogenic B. bassiana. The genes putatively involved in fungal virulence should be experimentally validated by knockdown in future studies.

  12. Virulence characterisation of Salmonella enterica isolates of differing antimicrobial resistance recovered from UK livestock and imported meat samples.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Roderick eCard

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available Salmonella enterica is a foodborne zoonotic pathogen of significant public health concern. We have characterised the virulence and antimicrobial resistance gene content of 95 Salmonella isolates from 11 serovars by DNA microarray recovered from UK livestock or imported meat. Genes encoding resistance to sulphonamides (sul1, sul2, tetracycline (tet(A, tet(B, streptomycin (strA, strB, aminoglycoside (aadA1, aadA2, beta-lactam (blaTEM, and trimethoprim (dfrA17 were common. Virulence gene content differed between serovars; S. Typhimurium formed two subclades based on virulence plasmid presence. Thirteen isolates were selected by their virulence profile for pathotyping using the Galleria mellonella pathogenesis model. Infection with a chicken invasive S. Enteritidis or S. Gallinarum isolate, a multidrug resistant S. Kentucky, or a S. Typhimurium DT104 isolate resulted in high mortality of the larvae; notably presence of the virulence plasmid in S. Typhimurium was not associated with increased larvae mortality. Histopathological examination showed that infection caused severe damage to the Galleria gut structure. Enumeration of intracellular bacteria in the larvae 24 hours post-infection showed increases of up to 7 log above the initial inoculum and transmission electron microscopy (TEM showed bacterial replication in the haemolymph. TEM also revealed the presence of vacuoles containing bacteria in the haemocytes, similar to Salmonella containing vacuoles observed in mammalian macrophages; although there was no evidence from our work of bacterial replication within vacuoles. This work shows that microarrays can be used for rapid virulence genotyping of S. enterica and that the Galleria animal model replicates some aspects of Salmonella infection in mammals. These procedures can be used to help inform on the pathogenicity of isolates that may be antibiotic resistant and have scope to aid the assessment of their potential public and animal health risk.

  13. LPS structure and PhoQ activity are important for Salmonella Typhimurium virulence in the Galleria mellonella infection model [corrected].

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jennifer K Bender

    Full Text Available The larvae of the wax moth, Galleria mellonella, have been used experimentally to host a range of bacterial and fungal pathogens. In this study we evaluated the suitability of G. mellonella as an alternative animal model of Salmonella infection. Using a range of inoculum doses we established that the LD₅₀ of SalmonellaTyphimurium strain NCTC 12023 was 3.6 × 10³ bacteria per larva. Further, a set of isogenic mutant strains depleted of known virulence factors was tested to identify determinants essential for S. Typhimurium pathogenesis. Mutants depleted of one or both of the type III secretion systems encoded by Salmonella Pathogenicity Islands 1 and 2 showed no virulence defect. In contrast, we observed reduced pathogenic potential of a phoQ mutant indicating an important role for the PhoPQ two-component signal transduction system. Lipopolysaccharide (LPS structure was also shown to influence Salmonella virulence in G. mellonella. A waaL(rfaL mutant, which lacks the entire O-antigen (OAg, was virtually avirulent, while a wzz(ST/wzz(fepE double mutant expressing only a very short OAg was highly attenuated for virulence. Furthermore, shortly after infection both LPS mutant strains showed decreased replication when compared to the wild type in a flow cytometry-based competitive index assay. In this study we successfully established a G. mellonella model of S. Typhimurium infection. By identifying PhoQ and LPS OAg length as key determinants of virulence in the wax moth larvae we proved that there is an overlap between this and other animal model systems, thus confirming that the G. mellonella infection model is suitable for assessing aspects of Salmonella virulence function.

  14. Structural encoding processes contribute to individual differences in face and object cognition: Inferences from psychometric test performance and event-related brain potentials.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nowparast Rostami, Hadiseh; Sommer, Werner; Zhou, Changsong; Wilhelm, Oliver; Hildebrandt, Andrea

    2017-10-01

    The enhanced N1 component in event-related potentials (ERP) to face stimuli, termed N170, is considered to indicate the structural encoding of faces. Previously, individual differences in the latency of the N170 have been related to face and object cognition abilities. By orthogonally manipulating content domain (faces vs objects) and task demands (easy/speed vs difficult/accuracy) in both psychometric and EEG tasks, we investigated the uniqueness of the processes underlying face cognition as compared with object cognition and the extent to which the N1/N170 component can explain individual differences in face and object cognition abilities. Data were recorded from N = 198 healthy young adults. Structural equation modeling (SEM) confirmed that the accuracies of face perception (FP) and memory are specific abilities above general object cognition; in contrast, the speed of face processing was not differentiable from the speed of object cognition. Although there was considerable domain-general variance in the N170 shared with the N1, there was significant face-specific variance in the N170. The brain-behavior relationship showed that faster face-specific processes for structural encoding of faces are associated with higher accuracy in both perceiving and memorizing faces. Moreover, in difficult task conditions, qualitatively different processes are additionally needed for recognizing face and object stimuli as compared with easy tasks. The difficulty-dependent variance components in the N170 amplitude were related with both face and object memory (OM) performance. We discuss implications for understanding individual differences in face cognition. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  15. Cell Density Control of Staphylococcal Virulence Mediated by an Octapeptide Pheromone

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ji, Guangyong; Beavis, Ronald C.; Novick, Richard P.

    1995-12-01

    Some bacterial pathogens elaborate and secrete virulence factors in response to environmental signals, others in response to a specific host product, and still others in response to no discernible cue. In this study, we have demonstrated that the synthesis of Staphylococcus aureus virulence factors is controlled by a density-sensing system that utilizes an octapeptide produced by the organism itself. The octapeptide activates expression of the agr locus, a global regulator of the virulence response. This response involves the reciprocal regulation of genes encoding surface proteins and those encoding secreted virulence factors. As cells enter the postexponential phase, surface protein genes are repressed by agr and secretory protein genes are subsequently activated. The intracellular agr effector is a regulatory RNA, RNAIII, whose transcription is activated by an agr-encoded signal transduction system for which the octapeptide is the ligand.

  16. Comparative genomics analyses revealed two virulent Listeria monocytogenes strains isolated from ready-to-eat food.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lim, Shu Yong; Yap, Kien-Pong; Thong, Kwai Lin

    2016-01-01

    Listeria monocytogenes is an important foodborne pathogen that causes considerable morbidity in humans with high mortality rates. In this study, we have sequenced the genomes and performed comparative genomics analyses on two strains, LM115 and LM41, isolated from ready-to-eat food in Malaysia. The genome size of LM115 and LM41 was 2,959,041 and 2,963,111 bp, respectively. These two strains shared approximately 90% homologous genes. Comparative genomics and phylogenomic analyses revealed that LM115 and LM41 were more closely related to the reference strains F2365 and EGD-e, respectively. Our virulence profiling indicated a total of 31 virulence genes shared by both analysed strains. These shared genes included those that encode for internalins and L. monocytogenes pathogenicity island 1 (LIPI-1). Both the Malaysian L. monocytogenes strains also harboured several genes associated with stress tolerance to counter the adverse conditions. Seven antibiotic and efflux pump related genes which may confer resistance against lincomycin, erythromycin, fosfomycin, quinolone, tetracycline, and penicillin, and macrolides were identified in the genomes of both strains. Whole genome sequencing and comparative genomics analyses revealed two virulent L. monocytogenes strains isolated from ready-to-eat foods in Malaysia. The identification of strains with pathogenic, persistent, and antibiotic resistant potentials from minimally processed food warrant close attention from both healthcare and food industry.

  17. Cell-free propagation of Coxiella burnetii does not affect its relative virulence.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Runa Kuley

    Full Text Available Q fever is caused by the obligate intracellular bacterium Coxiella burnetii. In vitro growth of the bacterium is usually limited to viable eukaryotic host cells imposing experimental constraints for molecular studies, such as the identification and characterisation of major virulence factors. Studies of pathogenicity may benefit from the recent development of an extracellular growth medium for C. burnetii. However, it is crucial to investigate the consistency of the virulence phenotype of strains propagated by the two fundamentally different culturing systems. In the present study, we assessed the viability of C. burnetii and the lipopolysaccaride (LPS encoding region of the bacteria in both culture systems as indirect but key parameters to the infection potential of C. burnetii. Propidium monoazide (PMA treatment-based real-time PCR was used for enumeration of viable C. burnetii which were validated by fluorescent infectious focus forming unit counting assays. Furthermore, RNA isolated from C. burnetiipropagated in both the culture systems was examined for LPS-related gene expression. All thus far known LPS-related genes were found to be expressed in early passages in both culturing systems indicating the presence of predominantly the phase I form of C. burnetii. Finally, we used immune-competent mice to provide direct evidence, that the relative virulence of different C. burnetii strains is essentially the same for both axenic and cell-based methods of propagation.

  18. Glycosylphosphatidylinositol-Anchored Proteins in Fusarium graminearum: Inventory, Variability, and Virulence

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rittenour, William R.; Harris, Steven D.

    2013-01-01

    The contribution of cell surface proteins to plant pathogenicity of fungi is not well understood. As such, the objective of this study was to investigate the functions and importance of glycosylphosphatidylinositol-anchored proteins (GPI-APs) in the wheat pathogen F. graminearum. GPI-APs are surface proteins that are attached to either the membrane or cell wall. In order to simultaneously disrupt several GPI-APs, a phosphoethanolamine transferase-encoding gene gpi7 was deleted and the resultant mutant characterized in terms of growth, development, and virulence. The Δgpi7 mutants exhibited slower radial growth rates and aberrantly shaped macroconidia. Furthermore, virulence tests and microscopic analyses indicated that Gpi7 is required for ramification of the fungus throughout the rachis of wheat heads. In parallel, bioinformatics tools were utilized to predict and inventory GPI-APs within the proteome of F. graminearum. Two of the genes identified in this screen (FGSG_01588 and FGSG_08844) displayed isolate-specific length variability as observed for other fungal cell wall adhesion genes. Nevertheless, deletion of these genes failed to reveal obvious defects in growth, development, or virulence. This research demonstrates the global importance of GPI-APs to in planta proliferation in F. graminearum, and also highlights the potential of individual GPI-APs as diagnostic markers. PMID:24312325

  19. Virulence profiles of Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli and other potentially diarrheagenic E.coli of bovine origin, in Mendoza, Argentina

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M.A. Pizarro

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available This study described a group of strains obtained from a slaughter house in Mendoza, in terms of their pathogenic factors, serotype, antibiotype and molecular profile. Ninety one rectal swabs and one hundred eight plating samples taken from carcasses of healthy cattle intended for meat consumption were analyzed. Both the swab and the plate samples were processed to analyze the samples for the presence of virulence genes by PCR: stx1, stx2, eae and astA. The Stx positive strains were confirmed by citotoxicity assay in Vero cells. The isolates were subsequently investigated for their O:H serotype, antimicrobial susceptibility and molecular profile by Random Amplification of Polymorphic DNA (RAPD. Twelve E.coli strains were identified by their pathogenicity. Nine were from fecal origin and three from carcasses. Three strains carried the stx1 gene, three the stx2 gene, two carried eae and four the astA gene. The detected serotypes were: O172:H-; O150:H8; O91:H21; O178:H19 and O2:H5. The strains showed a similarity around 70% by RAPD. Some of the E.coli strains belonged to serogroups known for certain life-threatening diseases in humans. Their presence in carcasses indicates the high probability of bacterial spread during slaughter and processing.

  20. Dual Optical Recordings for Action Potentials and Calcium Handling in Induced Pluripotent Stem Cell Models of Cardiac Arrhythmias Using Genetically Encoded Fluorescent Indicators

    Science.gov (United States)

    Song, LouJin; Awari, Daniel W.; Han, Elizabeth Y.; Uche-Anya, Eugenia; Park, Seon-Hye E.; Yabe, Yoko A.; Chung, Wendy K.

    2015-01-01

    Reprogramming of human somatic cells to pluripotency has been used to investigate disease mechanisms and to identify potential therapeutics. However, the methods used for reprogramming, in vitro differentiation, and phenotyping are still complicated, expensive, and time-consuming. To address the limitations, we first optimized a protocol for reprogramming of human fibroblasts and keratinocytes into pluripotency using single lipofection and the episomal vectors in a 24-well plate format. This method allowed us to generate multiple lines of integration-free and feeder-free induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) from seven patients with cardiac diseases and three controls. Second, we differentiated human iPSCs derived from patients with Timothy syndrome into cardiomyocytes using a monolayer differentiation method. We found that Timothy syndrome cardiomyocytes showed slower, irregular contractions and abnormal calcium handling compared with the controls. The results are consistent with previous reports using a retroviral method for reprogramming and an embryoid body-based method for cardiac differentiation. Third, we developed an efficient approach for recording the action potentials and calcium transients simultaneously in control and patient cardiomyocytes using genetically encoded fluorescent indicators, ArcLight and R-GECO1. The dual optical recordings enabled us to observe prolonged action potentials and abnormal calcium handling in Timothy syndrome cardiomyocytes. We confirmed that roscovitine rescued the phenotypes in Timothy syndrome cardiomyocytes and that these findings were consistent with previous studies using conventional electrophysiological recordings and calcium imaging with dyes. The approaches using our optimized methods and dual optical recordings will improve iPSC applicability for disease modeling to investigate mechanisms underlying cardiac arrhythmias and to test potential therapeutics. PMID:25769651

  1. Reconstruction of the metabolic network of Pseudomonas aeruginosa to interrogate virulence factor synthesis

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bartell, Jennifer; Blazier, Anna S; Yen, Phillip

    2017-01-01

    Virulence-linked pathways in opportunistic pathogens are putative therapeutic targets that may be associated with less potential for resistance than targets in growth-essential pathways. However, efficacy of virulence-linked targets may be affected by the contribution of virulence-related genes t...

  2. CRISPR interference can prevent natural transformation and virulence acquisition during in vivo bacterial infection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bikard, David; Hatoum-Aslan, Asma; Mucida, Daniel; Marraffini, Luciano A

    2012-08-16

    Pathogenic bacterial strains emerge largely due to transfer of virulence and antimicrobial resistance genes between bacteria, a process known as horizontal gene transfer (HGT). Clustered, regularly interspaced, short palindromic repeat (CRISPR) loci of bacteria and archaea encode a sequence-specific defense mechanism against bacteriophages and constitute a programmable barrier to HGT. However, the impact of CRISPRs on the emergence of virulence is unknown. We programmed the human pathogen Streptococcus pneumoniae with CRISPR sequences that target capsule genes, an essential pneumococcal virulence factor, and show that CRISPR interference can prevent transformation of nonencapsulated, avirulent pneumococci into capsulated, virulent strains during infection in mice. Further, at low frequencies bacteria can lose CRISPR function, acquire capsule genes, and mount a successful infection. These results demonstrate that CRISPR interference can prevent the emergence of virulence in vivo and that strong selective pressure for virulence or antibiotic resistance can lead to CRISPR loss in bacterial pathogens. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  3. Squamous Cell Carcinoma Antigen-encoding Genes SERPINB3/B4 as Potentially Useful Markers for the Stratification of HNSCC Tumours.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saidak, Zuzana; Morisse, Mony Chenda; Chatelain, Denis; Sauzay, Chloé; Houessinon, Aline; Guilain, Nelly; Soyez, Marion; Chauffert, Bruno; Dakpé, Stéphanie; Galmiche, Antoine

    2018-03-01

    The squamous cell carcinoma antigen (SCCA), encoded by the genes SERPINB3/B4, is a tumour marker produced by head and neck squamous cell carcinoma (HNSCC). We aimed to examine SERPINB3/B4 mRNA levels and its clinical significance in the therapeutic context. We retrieved mRNA expression levels, clinical, pathological and genomic data for 520 HNSCC from The Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA). HNSCC tumours express high levels of SERPINB3/B4 mRNA. SERPINB3 expression differs depending on Human papillomavirus (HPV) infection status, primary tumour location, grade and differentiation, extension to lymph nodes and extracapsular spread. Interestingly, we observed an association between SERPINB3/B4 and the presence of tumour immune infiltrate as well as the expression of the immune checkpoint regulators PD-L1/PD-L2 that depended on HPV status. Our findings point to potential interest of SERPINB3/B4 for the stratification of HNSCC patients in the therapeutic context. Copyright© 2018, International Institute of Anticancer Research (Dr. George J. Delinasios), All rights reserved.

  4. A comprehensive study on the role of the Yersinia pestis virulence markers in an animal model of pneumonic plague

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    W.E. Kaman (Wendy); S. Hawkey; D. van der Kleij (Desiree); M.P. Broekhuijsen; N.J. Silman; F.J. Bikker (Floris)

    2011-01-01

    textabstractWe determined the role of Yersinia pestis virulence markers in an animal model of pneumonic plague. Eleven strains of Y. pestis were characterized using PCR assays to detect the presence of known virulence genes both encoded by the three plasmids as well as chromosomal markers. The

  5. Virulence Factors of Erwinia amylovora: A Review

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Núria Piqué

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available Erwinia amylovora, a Gram negative bacteria of the Enterobacteriaceae family, is the causal agent of fire blight, a devastating plant disease affecting a wide range of host species within Rosaceae and a major global threat to commercial apple and pear production. Among the limited number of control options currently available, prophylactic application of antibiotics during the bloom period appears the most effective. Pathogen cells enter plants through the nectarthodes of flowers and other natural openings, such as wounds, and are capable of rapid movement within plants and the establishment of systemic infections. Many virulence determinants of E. amylovora have been characterized, including the Type III secretion system (T3SS, the exopolysaccharide (EPS amylovoran, biofilm formation, and motility. To successfully establish an infection, E. amylovora uses a complex regulatory network to sense the relevant environmental signals and coordinate the expression of early and late stage virulence factors involving two component signal transduction systems, bis-(3′-5′-cyclic di-GMP (c-di-GMP and quorum sensing. The LPS biosynthetic gene cluster is one of the relatively few genetic differences observed between Rubus- and Spiraeoideae-infecting genotypes of E. amylovora. Other differential factors, such as the presence and composition of an integrative conjugative element associated with the Hrp T3SS (hrp genes encoding the T3SS apparatus, have been recently described. In the present review, we present the recent findings on virulence factors research, focusing on their role in bacterial pathogenesis and indicating other virulence factors that deserve future research to characterize them.

  6. Iron is a signal for Stenotrophomonas maltophilia biofilm formation, oxidative stress response, OMPs expression and virulence

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carlos Adrian Garcia

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available Stenotrophomonas maltophilia is an emerging nosocomial pathogen. In many bacteria iron availability regulates, trough the Fur system, not only iron homeostasis but also virulence. The aim of this work was to assess the role of iron on S. maltophilia biofilm formation, EPS production, oxidative stress response, OMPs regulation, quorum sensing (QS, and virulence. Studies were done on K279 and its isogenic fur mutant F60 cultured in the presence or absence of dipyridyl. This is the first report of spontaneous fur mutants obtained in S. maltophilia. F60 produced higher amounts of biofilms than K279a and CLSM analysis demonstrated improved adherence and biofilm organization. Under iron restricted conditions, K279a produced biofilms with more biomass and enhanced thickness. In addition, F60 produced higher amounts of EPS than K279a but with a similar composition, as revealed by ATR-FTIR spectroscopy. With respect to the oxidative stress response, MnSOD was the only SOD isoenzyme detected in K279a. F60 presented higher SOD activity than the wt strain in planktonic and biofilm cultures, and iron deprivation increased K279a SOD activity. Under iron starvation, SDS-PAGE profile from K279a presented two iron-repressed proteins. Mass spectrometry analysis revealed homology with FepA and another putative TonB-dependent siderophore receptor of K279a. In silico analysis allowed the detection of potential Fur boxes in the respective coding genes. K279a encodes the QS diffusible signal factor (DSF. Under iron restriction K279a produced higher amounts of DSF than under iron rich condition. Finally, F60 was more virulent than K279a in the Galleria mellonella killing assay. These results put in evidence that iron levels regulate, likely through the Fur system, S. maltophilia biofilm formation, oxidative stress response, OMPs expression, DSF production and virulence.

  7. Genomic sequence and virulence of clonal isolates of vaccinia virus Tiantan, the Chinese smallpox vaccine strain.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Qicheng Zhang

    Full Text Available Despite the worldwide eradication of smallpox in 1979, the potential bioterrorism threat from variola virus and the ongoing use of vaccinia virus (VACV as a vector for vaccine development argue for continued research on VACV. In China, the VACV Tiantan strain (TT was used in the smallpox eradication campaign. Its progeny strain is currently being used to develop a human immunodeficiency virus (HIV vaccine. Here we sequenced the full genomes of five TT clones isolated by plaque purification from the TT (752-1 viral stock. Phylogenetic analysis with other commonly used VACV strains showed that TT (752-1 and its clones clustered and exhibited higher sequence diversity than that found in Dryvax clones. The ∼190 kbp genomes of TT appeared to encode 273 open reading frames (ORFs. ORFs located in the middle of the genome were more conserved than those located at the two termini, where many virulence and immunomodulation associated genes reside. Several patterns of nucleotide changes including point mutations, insertions and deletions were identified. The polymorphisms in seven virulence-associated proteins and six immunomodulation-related proteins were analyzed. We also investigated the neuro- and skin- virulence of TT clones in mice and rabbits, respectively. The TT clones exhibited significantly less virulence than the New York City Board of Health (NYCBH strain, as evidenced by less extensive weight loss and morbidity in mice as well as produced smaller skin lesions and lower incidence of putrescence in rabbits. The complete genome sequences, ORF annotations, and phenotypic diversity yielded from this study aid our understanding of the Chinese historic TT strain and are useful for HIV vaccine projects employing TT as a vector.

  8. Genomic sequence and virulence of clonal isolates of vaccinia virus Tiantan, the Chinese smallpox vaccine strain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Qicheng; Tian, Meijuan; Feng, Yi; Zhao, Kai; Xu, Jing; Liu, Ying; Shao, Yiming

    2013-01-01

    Despite the worldwide eradication of smallpox in 1979, the potential bioterrorism threat from variola virus and the ongoing use of vaccinia virus (VACV) as a vector for vaccine development argue for continued research on VACV. In China, the VACV Tiantan strain (TT) was used in the smallpox eradication campaign. Its progeny strain is currently being used to develop a human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) vaccine. Here we sequenced the full genomes of five TT clones isolated by plaque purification from the TT (752-1) viral stock. Phylogenetic analysis with other commonly used VACV strains showed that TT (752-1) and its clones clustered and exhibited higher sequence diversity than that found in Dryvax clones. The ∼190 kbp genomes of TT appeared to encode 273 open reading frames (ORFs). ORFs located in the middle of the genome were more conserved than those located at the two termini, where many virulence and immunomodulation associated genes reside. Several patterns of nucleotide changes including point mutations, insertions and deletions were identified. The polymorphisms in seven virulence-associated proteins and six immunomodulation-related proteins were analyzed. We also investigated the neuro- and skin- virulence of TT clones in mice and rabbits, respectively. The TT clones exhibited significantly less virulence than the New York City Board of Health (NYCBH) strain, as evidenced by less extensive weight loss and morbidity in mice as well as produced smaller skin lesions and lower incidence of putrescence in rabbits. The complete genome sequences, ORF annotations, and phenotypic diversity yielded from this study aid our understanding of the Chinese historic TT strain and are useful for HIV vaccine projects employing TT as a vector.

  9. RNAi-Based Functional Genomics Identifies New Virulence Determinants in Mucormycosis.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Trung Anh Trieu

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Mucorales are an emerging group of human pathogens that are responsible for the lethal disease mucormycosis. Unfortunately, functional studies on the genetic factors behind the virulence of these organisms are hampered by their limited genetic tractability, since they are reluctant to classical genetic tools like transposable elements or gene mapping. Here, we describe an RNAi-based functional genomic platform that allows the identification of new virulence factors through a forward genetic approach firstly described in Mucorales. This platform contains a whole-genome collection of Mucor circinelloides silenced transformants that presented a broad assortment of phenotypes related to the main physiological processes in fungi, including virulence, hyphae morphology, mycelial and yeast growth, carotenogenesis and asexual sporulation. Selection of transformants with reduced virulence allowed the identification of mcplD, which encodes a Phospholipase D, and mcmyo5, encoding a probably essential cargo transporter of the Myosin V family, as required for a fully virulent phenotype of M. circinelloides. Knock-out mutants for those genes showed reduced virulence in both Galleria mellonella and Mus musculus models, probably due to a delayed germination and polarized growth within macrophages. This study provides a robust approach to study virulence in Mucorales and as a proof of concept identified new virulence determinants in M. circinelloides that could represent promising targets for future antifungal therapies.

  10. Random T-DNA mutagenesis identifies a Cu-Zn-superoxide dismutase gene as a virulence factor of Sclerotinia sclerotiorum

    Science.gov (United States)

    Agrobacterium-mediated transformation (AMT) was used to identify potential virulence factors in Sclerotinia sclerotiorum. Screening AMT transformants identified two mutants showing significantly reduced virulence. The mutants showed similar growth rate, colony morphology, and sclerotial and oxalate ...

  11. The association of eight potentially functional polymorphisms in five adrenergic receptor-encoding genes with myocardial infarction risk in Han Chinese.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xia, Kun; Ding, Rongjing; Zhang, Zhiyong; Li, Weiming; Shang, Xiaoming; Yang, Xinchun; Wang, Lefeng; Zhang, Qi

    2017-08-15

    Adrenergic receptors play a key role in activating the sympathetic nervous system, which often accompanies with the development of myocardial infarction (MI). Here, we aimed to test the association of eight potentially functional polymorphisms in five adrenergic receptor-encoding genes with MI risk. Genotypes were available for 717 MI patients and 612 controls. There were no detectable deviations from the Hardy-Weinberg equilibrium for all study polymorphisms. Allele frequencies differed remarkably for ADRA2B D/I (P<0.001), ADRB1 Ser49Gly (P=0.002), ADRB2 Gln27Glu (P=0.005), and ADRB3 Trp64Arg (P<0.001) polymorphisms, even after the Bonferroni correction. Systolic blood pressure was significantly lower in ADRA2B II genotype carriers than in the DD genotype carriers (P=0.006), while plasma high-density lipoprotein cholesterol was significantly higher in patients carrying ADRA2B I allele and ADRB1 49Ser allele than in patients with the DD genotype and 49Gly/49Gly genotype, respectively (P=0.018 and 0.033). Overall best interaction model consisted of ADRA2B D/I, ADRB1 Ser49Gly, dyslipidemia and hypertension, with the highest testing accuracy of 0.627 and the maximal 10-fold cross-validation consistency (P=0.017). Finally, a nomogram was depicted based on four significant polymorphisms and metabolic risk factors, and it had a better predictive utility and was internally validated with a discrimination C-index of 0.723 (P<0.001). Altogether, we identified two polymorphisms, ADRA2B D/I and ADRB1 Ser49Arg, which not only altered genetic susceptibility to MI, but also impacted on blood pressure and plasma lipid changes, and their combination with metabolic risk factors constituted the overall best interaction model. Copyright © 2017. Published by Elsevier B.V.

  12. RgpF Is Required for Maintenance of Stress Tolerance and Virulence in Streptococcus mutans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kovacs, C J; Faustoferri, R C; Quivey, R G

    2017-12-15

    Bacterial cell wall dynamics have been implicated as important determinants of cellular physiology, stress tolerance, and virulence. In Streptococcus mutans , the cell wall is composed primarily of a rhamnose-glucose polysaccharide (RGP) linked to the peptidoglycan. Despite extensive studies describing its formation and composition, the potential roles for RGP in S. mutans biology have not been well investigated. The present study characterizes the impact of RGP disruption as a result of the deletion of rgpF , the gene encoding a rhamnosyltransferase involved in the construction of the core polyrhamnose backbone of RGP. The Δ rgpF mutant strain displayed an overall reduced fitness compared to the wild type, with heightened sensitivities to various stress-inducing culture conditions and an inability to tolerate acid challenge. The loss of rgpF caused a perturbation of membrane-associated functions known to be critical for aciduricity, a hallmark of S. mutans acid tolerance. The proton gradient across the membrane was disrupted, and the Δ rgpF mutant strain was unable to induce activity of the F 1 F o ATPase in cultures grown under low-pH conditions. Further, the virulence potential of S. mutans was also drastically reduced following the deletion of rgpF The Δ rgpF mutant strain produced significantly less robust biofilms, indicating an impairment in its ability to adhere to hydroxyapatite surfaces. Additionally, the Δ rgpF mutant lost competitive fitness against oral peroxigenic streptococci, and it displayed significantly attenuated virulence in an in vivo Galleria mellonella infection model. Collectively, these results highlight a critical function of the RGP in the maintenance of overall stress tolerance and virulence traits in S. mutans IMPORTANCE The cell wall of Streptococcus mutans , the bacterium most commonly associated with tooth decay, is abundant in rhamnose-glucose polysaccharides (RGP). While these structures are antigenically distinct to S. mutans

  13. Virulence Gene Pool Detected in Bovine Group C Streptococcus dysgalactiae subsp. dysgalactiae Isolates by Use of a Group A S. pyogenes Virulence Microarray ▿

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rato, Márcia G.; Nerlich, Andreas; Bergmann, René; Bexiga, Ricardo; Nunes, Sandro F.; Vilela, Cristina L.; Santos-Sanches, Ilda; Chhatwal, Gursharan S.

    2011-01-01

    A custom-designed microarray containing 220 virulence genes of Streptococcus pyogenes (group A Streptococcus [GAS]) was used to test group C Streptococcus dysgalactiae subsp. dysgalactiae (GCS) field strains causing bovine mastitis and group C or group G Streptococcus dysgalactiae subsp. equisimilis (GCS/GGS) isolates from human infections, with the latter being used for comparative purposes, for the presence of virulence genes. All bovine and all human isolates carried a fraction of the 220 genes (23% and 39%, respectively). The virulence genes encoding streptolysin S, glyceraldehyde-3-phosphate dehydrogenase, the plasminogen-binding M-like protein PAM, and the collagen-like protein SclB were detected in the majority of both bovine and human isolates (94 to 100%). Virulence factors, usually carried by human beta-hemolytic streptococcal pathogens, such as streptokinase, laminin-binding protein, and the C5a peptidase precursor, were detected in all human isolates but not in bovine isolates. Additionally, GAS bacteriophage-associated virulence genes encoding superantigens, DNase, and/or streptodornase were detected in bovine isolates (72%) but not in the human isolates. Determinants located in non-bacteriophage-related mobile elements, such as the gene encoding R28, were detected in all bovine and human isolates. Several virulence genes, including genes of bacteriophage origin, were shown to be expressed by reverse transcriptase PCR (RT-PCR). Phylogenetic analysis of superantigen gene sequences revealed a high level (>98%) of identity among genes of bovine GCS, of the horse pathogen Streptococcus equi subsp. equi, and of the human pathogen GAS. Our findings indicate that alpha-hemolytic bovine GCS, an important mastitis pathogen and considered to be a nonhuman pathogen, carries important virulence factors responsible for virulence and pathogenesis in humans. PMID:21525223

  14. OrfX, a Nucleomodulin Required for Listeria monocytogenes Virulence

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    Andrzej Prokop

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available Listeria monocytogenes is a bacterial pathogen causing severe foodborne infections in humans and animals. Listeria can enter into host cells and survive and multiply therein, due to an arsenal of virulence determinants encoded in different loci on the chromosome. Several key Listeria virulence genes are clustered in Listeria pathogenicity island 1. This important locus also contains orfX (lmo0206, a gene of unknown function. Here, we found that OrfX is a small, secreted protein whose expression is positively regulated by PrfA, the major transcriptional activator of Listeria virulence genes. We provide evidence that OrfX is a virulence factor that dampens the oxidative response of infected macrophages, which contributes to intracellular survival of bacteria. OrfX is targeted to the nucleus and interacts with the regulatory protein RybP. We show that in macrophages, the expression of OrfX decreases the level of RybP, which controls cellular infection. Collectively, these data reveal that Listeria targets RybP and evades macrophage oxidative stress for efficient infection. Altogether, OrfX is after LntA, the second virulence factor acting directly in the nucleus.

  15. Aureusimines in Staphylococcus aureus are not involved in virulence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sun, Fei; Cho, Hoonsik; Jeong, Do-Won; Li, Chunling; He, Chuan; Bae, Taeok

    2010-12-29

    Recently, dipeptide aureusimines were reported to activate expression of staphylococcal virulence genes, such as alpha-hemolysin, and increase S. aureus virulence. Surprisingly, most of the virulence genes affected by aureusimines form part of the regulon of the SaeRS two component system (TCS), raising the possibility that SaeRS might be directly or indirectly involved in the aureusimine-dependent signaling process. Using HPLC analyses, we confirmed that a transposon mutant of ausA, the gene encoding the aureusimine dipeptide synthesis enzyme, does not produce dipeptides. However, the transposon mutant showed normal hemolysis activity and alpha-hemolysin/SaeP production. Furthermore, the P1 promoter of the sae operon, one of the targets of the SaeRS TCS, showed normal transcription activity. Moreover, in contrast to the original report, the ausA transposon mutant did not exhibit attenuated virulence in an animal infection model. DNA sequencing revealed that the ausA deletion mutant used in the original study has an 83 nt-duplication in saeS. Hemolysis activity of the original mutant was restored by a plasmid carrying the sae operon. A mutant of the sae operon showed elevated resistance to chloramphenicol and erythromycin, two antibiotics widely used during staphylococcal mutagenesis. At 43°C in the presence of erythromycin and aeration, the conditions typically employed for staphylococcal mutagenesis, an saeR transposon mutant grew much faster than a control mutant and the saeR mutant was highly enriched in a mixed culture experiment. Our results show that the previously reported roles of aureusimines in staphylococcal gene regulation and virulence were due to an unintended mutation in saeS, which was likely selected due to elevated resistance of the mutant to environmental stresses. Thus, there is no evidence indicating that the dipeptide aureusimines play a role in sae-mediated virulence factor production or contribute to staphylococcal virulence.

  16. Aureusimines in Staphylococcus aureus are not involved in virulence.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fei Sun

    2010-12-01

    Full Text Available Recently, dipeptide aureusimines were reported to activate expression of staphylococcal virulence genes, such as alpha-hemolysin, and increase S. aureus virulence. Surprisingly, most of the virulence genes affected by aureusimines form part of the regulon of the SaeRS two component system (TCS, raising the possibility that SaeRS might be directly or indirectly involved in the aureusimine-dependent signaling process.Using HPLC analyses, we confirmed that a transposon mutant of ausA, the gene encoding the aureusimine dipeptide synthesis enzyme, does not produce dipeptides. However, the transposon mutant showed normal hemolysis activity and alpha-hemolysin/SaeP production. Furthermore, the P1 promoter of the sae operon, one of the targets of the SaeRS TCS, showed normal transcription activity. Moreover, in contrast to the original report, the ausA transposon mutant did not exhibit attenuated virulence in an animal infection model. DNA sequencing revealed that the ausA deletion mutant used in the original study has an 83 nt-duplication in saeS. Hemolysis activity of the original mutant was restored by a plasmid carrying the sae operon. A mutant of the sae operon showed elevated resistance to chloramphenicol and erythromycin, two antibiotics widely used during staphylococcal mutagenesis. At 43°C in the presence of erythromycin and aeration, the conditions typically employed for staphylococcal mutagenesis, an saeR transposon mutant grew much faster than a control mutant and the saeR mutant was highly enriched in a mixed culture experiment.Our results show that the previously reported roles of aureusimines in staphylococcal gene regulation and virulence were due to an unintended mutation in saeS, which was likely selected due to elevated resistance of the mutant to environmental stresses. Thus, there is no evidence indicating that the dipeptide aureusimines play a role in sae-mediated virulence factor production or contribute to staphylococcal

  17. Brucella, nitrogen and virulence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ronneau, Severin; Moussa, Simon; Barbier, Thibault; Conde-Álvarez, Raquel; Zuniga-Ripa, Amaia; Moriyon, Ignacio; Letesson, Jean-Jacques

    2016-08-01

    The brucellae are α-Proteobacteria causing brucellosis, an important zoonosis. Although multiplying in endoplasmic reticulum-derived vacuoles, they cause no cell death, suggesting subtle but efficient use of host resources. Brucellae are amino-acid prototrophs able to grow with ammonium or use glutamate as the sole carbon-nitrogen source in vitro. They contain more than twice amino acid/peptide/polyamine uptake genes than the amino-acid auxotroph Legionella pneumophila, which multiplies in a similar vacuole, suggesting a different nutritional strategy. During these two last decades, many mutants of key actors in nitrogen metabolism (transporters, enzymes, regulators, etc.) have been described to be essential for full virulence of brucellae. Here, we review the genomic and experimental data on Brucella nitrogen metabolism and its connection with virulence. An analysis of various aspects of this metabolism (transport, assimilation, biosynthesis, catabolism, respiration and regulation) has highlighted differences and similarities in nitrogen metabolism with other α-Proteobacteria. Together, these data suggest that, during their intracellular life cycle, the brucellae use various nitrogen sources for biosynthesis, catabolism and respiration following a strategy that requires prototrophy and a tight regulation of nitrogen use.

  18. Identification of a novel gene in ROD9 island of Salmonella Enteritidis involved in the alteration of virulence-associated genes expression.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Das, Susmita; Ray, Shilpa; Ryan, Daniel; Sahu, Bikash; Suar, Mrutyunjay

    2018-01-01

    Salmonella enterica subsp. I serovar Enteritidis (S. Enteritidis), one of the causative agents for non-typhoidal gastrointestinal diseases in humans is an intracellular bacterium and mechanism for its invasion into host cells is critical to cause infection. The virulence of the pathogen is explained by the expression of genes located on its pathogenicity islands, mostly encoded under SPI-1 and SPI-2. However, S. Typhimurium SL1344, despite sharing ∼98% of its genome with S. Enteritidis P125109, lacks few regions of differences (ROD) that are hypothesized to impart virulence potential to S. Enteritidis. In this study, we created different mutants in the ROD9 island of S. Enteritidis, also referred as SPI-19 and identified a novel locus, SEN1005, encoding a hypothetical protein that is involved in its pathogenesis. ΔSEN1005 displayed significantly reduced entry into cultured epithelial cells as well as uptake by macrophages and failed to cause acute colitis in C57BL/6 mice at day 3 post-infection (p.i.). Additionally, the global transcriptome analysis revealed a highly repressed SPI-1 and other down-regulated genes responsible for flagellar assembly, chemotaxis and motility in the mutant which correlated with decreased invasion and abated inflammation as compared to the wild-type. Therefore, our findings revealed that ΔSEN1005 was attenuated in vitro as well as in vivo and we propose this hypothetical protein to play a role in altering the expression of genes involved in Salmonella virulence.

  19. A Bistable Switch and Anatomical Site Control Vibrio cholerae Virulence Gene Expression in the Intestine

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nielsen, Alex Toftgaard; Dolganov, N. A.; Rasmussen, Thomas

    2010-01-01

    A fundamental, but unanswered question in host-pathogen interactions is the timing, localization and population distribution of virulence gene expression during infection. Here, microarray and in situ single cell expression methods were used to study Vibrio cholerae growth and virulence gene...... expression during infection of the rabbit ligated ileal loop model of cholera. Genes encoding the toxin-coregulated pilus (TCP) and cholera toxin (CT) were powerfully expressed early in the infectious process in bacteria adjacent to epithelial surfaces. Increased growth was found to co......, a chemical inducer of virulence gene expression. Striking bifurcation of the population occurred during entry into stationary phase: one subpopulation continued to express tcpA, whereas the expression declined in the other subpopulation. ctxA, encoding the A subunit of CT, and toxT, encoding the proximal...

  20. FvBck1, a Component of Cell Wall Integrity MAP Kinase Pathway, is Required for Virulence and Oxidative Stress Response in Sugarcane Pokkah Boeng Pathogen

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chengkang eZhang

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available Fusarium verticillioides (formerly F. moniliforme is suggested as one of the causal agents of Pokkah Boeng, a serious disease of sugarcane worldwide. Currently, detailed molecular and physiological mechanism of pathogenesis is unknown. In this study, we focused on cell wall integrity MAPK pathway as one of the potential signaling mechanisms associated with Pokkah Boeng pathogenesis. We identified FvBCK1 gene that encodes a MAP kinase kinase kinase homolog and determined that it is not only required for growth, micro- and macro-conidia production, and cell wall integrity but also for response to osmotic and oxidative stresses. The deletion of FvBCK1 caused a significant reduction in virulence and FB1 production, a carcinogenic mycotoxin produced by the fungus. Moreover, we found the expression levels of three genes, which are known to be involved in superoxide scavenging, were down regulated in the mutant. We hypothesized that the loss of superoxide scavenging capacity was one of the reasons for reduced virulence, but overexpression of catalase or peroxidase gene failed to restore the virulence defect in the deletion mutant. When we introduced Magnaporthe oryzae MCK1 into the FvBck1 deletion mutant, while certain phenotypes were restored, the complemented strain failed to gain full virulence. In summary, FvBck1 plays a diverse role in F. verticillioides, and detailed investigation of downstream signaling pathways will lead to a better understanding of how this MAPK pathway regulates Pokkah Boeng on sugarcane.

  1. HD-GYP domain proteins regulate biofilm formation and virulence in Pseudomonas aeruginosa

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ryan, Robert P.; Lucey, Jean; O'Donovan, Karen

    2009-01-01

    residues (YN-GYP). Here we have investigated the role of these proteins in biofilm formation, virulence factor synthesis and virulence of P. aeruginosa. Mutation of PA4108 and PA4781 led to an increase in the level of cyclic-di-GMP in P. aeruginosa, consistent with the predicted activity of the encoded......2572 had a negative influence on swarming that was cryptic and was revealed only after removal of an uncharacterized C-terminal domain. Mutation of PA4108, PA4781 and PA2572 had distinct effects on biofilm formation and architecture of P. aeruginosa. All three proteins contributed to virulence of P...

  2. Beyond the chromosome: the prevalence of unique extra-chromosomal bacteriophages with integrated virulence genes in pathogenic Staphylococcus aureus.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bryan Utter

    Full Text Available In Staphylococcus aureus, the disease impact of chromosomally integrated prophages on virulence is well described. However, the existence of extra-chromosomal prophages, both plasmidial and episomal, remains obscure. Despite the recent explosion in bacterial and bacteriophage genomic sequencing, studies have failed to specifically focus on extra-chromosomal elements. We selectively enriched and sequenced extra-chromosomal DNA from S. aureus isolates using Roche-454 technology and uncovered evidence for the widespread distribution of multiple extra-chromosomal prophages (ExPΦs throughout both antibiotic-sensitive and -resistant strains. We completely sequenced one such element comprised of a 43.8 kbp, circular ExPΦ (designated ФBU01 from a vancomycin-intermediate S. aureus (VISA strain. Assembly and annotation of ФBU01 revealed a number of putative virulence determinants encoded within a bacteriophage immune evasion cluster (IEC. Our identification of several potential ExPΦs and mobile genetic elements (MGEs also revealed numerous putative virulence factors and antibiotic resistance genes. We describe here a previously unidentified level of genetic diversity of stealth extra-chromosomal elements in S. aureus, including phages with a larger presence outside the chromosome that likely play a prominent role in pathogenesis and strain diversity driven by horizontal gene transfer (HGT.

  3. Pleiotropic Regulation of Virulence Genes in Streptococcus mutans by the Conserved Small Protein SprV.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shankar, Manoharan; Hossain, Mohammad S; Biswas, Indranil

    2017-04-15

    critical for successful disease establishment. Sometimes these regulators, which are potential targets for antimicrobials, are lost in the genomic context due to the lack of annotated homologs. This work outlines the regulatory impact of a small, highly conserved hypothetical protein, SprV, encoded by S. mutans We show that SprV affects the transcript levels of various virulence factors required for normal growth, biofilm formation, stress tolerance, genetic competence, and bacteriocin production. Copyright © 2017 American Society for Microbiology.

  4. PoxA, yjeK, and elongation factor P coordinately modulate virulence and drug resistance in Salmonella enterica

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Navarre, William Wiley; Zou, S Betty; Roy, Hervé

    2010-01-01

    We report an interaction between poxA, encoding a paralog of lysyl tRNA-synthetase, and the closely linked yjeK gene, encoding a putative 2,3-beta-lysine aminomutase, that is critical for virulence and stress resistance in Salmonella enterica. Salmonella poxA and yjeK mutants share extensive...

  5. Complete genome-wide screening and subtractive genomic approach revealed new virulence factors, potential drug targets against bio-war pathogen Brucella melitensis 16M

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pradeepkiran JA

    2015-03-01

    glycerol structural analogs from the PubChem database. We identified five best inhibitors with strong affinities, stable interactions, and also with reliable drug-like properties. Hence, these leads might be used as the most effective inhibitors of modeled protein. The outcome of the present work of virtual screening of putative gene targets might facilitate design of potential drugs for better treatment against brucellosis. Keywords: Brucella melitensis 16M, homology modeling, putative genes, structure based virtual screening, subtractive genomic approach, targets

  6. Copper tolerance and virulence in bacteria

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ladomersky, Erik; Petris, Michael J.

    2015-01-01

    Copper (Cu) is an essential trace element for all aerobic organisms. It functions as a cofactor in enzymes that catalyze a wide variety of redox reactions due to its ability to cycle between two oxidation states, Cu(I) and Cu(II). This same redox property of copper has the potential to cause toxicity if copper homeostasis is not maintained. Studies suggest that the toxic properties of copper are harnessed by the innate immune system of the host to kill bacteria. To counter such defenses, bacteria rely on copper tolerance genes for virulence within the host. These discoveries suggest bacterial copper intoxication is a component of host nutritional immunity, thus expanding our knowledge of the roles of copper in biology. This review summarizes our current understanding of copper tolerance in bacteria, and the extent to which these pathways contribute to bacterial virulence within the host. PMID:25652326

  7. Calcineurin plays key roles in the dimorphic transition and virulence of the human pathogenic zygomycete Mucor circinelloides.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Soo Chan; Li, Alicia; Calo, Silvia; Heitman, Joseph

    2013-01-01

    Many pathogenic fungi are dimorphic and switch between yeast and filamentous states. This switch alters host-microbe interactions and is critical for pathogenicity. However, in zygomycetes, whether dimorphism contributes to virulence is a central unanswered question. The pathogenic zygomycete Mucor circinelloides exhibits hyphal growth in aerobic conditions but switches to multi-budded yeast growth under anaerobic/high CO₂ conditions. We found that in the presence of the calcineurin inhibitor FK506, Mucor exhibits exclusively multi-budded yeast growth. We also found that M. circinelloides encodes three calcineurin catalytic A subunits (CnaA, CnaB, and CnaC) and one calcineurin regulatory B subunit (CnbR). Mutations in the latch region of CnbR and in the FKBP12-FK506 binding domain of CnaA result in hyphal growth of Mucor in the presence of FK506. Disruption of the cnbR gene encoding the sole calcineurin B subunit necessary for calcineurin activity yielded mutants locked in permanent yeast phase growth. These findings reveal that the calcineurin pathway plays key roles in the dimorphic transition from yeast to hyphae. The cnbR yeast-locked mutants are less virulent than the wild-type strain in a heterologous host system, providing evidence that hyphae or the yeast-hyphal transition are linked to virulence. Protein kinase A activity (PKA) is elevated during yeast growth under anaerobic conditions, in the presence of FK506, or in the yeast-locked cnbR mutants, suggesting a novel connection between PKA and calcineurin. cnaA mutants lacking the CnaA catalytic subunit are hypersensitive to calcineurin inhibitors, display a hyphal polarity defect, and produce a mixture of yeast and hyphae in aerobic culture. The cnaA mutants also produce spores that are larger than wild-type, and spore size is correlated with virulence potential. Our results demonstrate that the calcineurin pathway orchestrates the yeast-hyphal and spore size dimorphic transitions that contribute to

  8. Restriction Fragment Length Polymorphisms of Virulence Plasmids in Rhodococcus equi

    Science.gov (United States)

    Takai, Shinji; Shoda, Masato; Sasaki, Yukako; Tsubaki, Shiro; Fortier, Guillaume; Pronost, Stephane; Rahal, Karim; Becu, Teotimo; Begg, Angela; Browning, Glenn; Nicholson, Vivian M.; Prescott, John F.

    1999-01-01

    Virulent Rhodococcus equi, which is a well-known cause of pyogranulomatous pneumonia in foals, possesses a large plasmid encoding virulence-associated 15- to 17-kDa antigens. Foal and soil isolates from five countries—Argentina, Australia, Canada, France, and Japan—were investigated for the presence of 15- to 17-kDa antigens by colony blotting, using the monoclonal antibody 10G5, and the gene coding for 15- to 17-kDa antigens by PCR. Plasmid DNAs extracted from positive isolates were digested with restriction endonucleases BamHI, EcoRI, EcoT22I, and HindIII, and the digestion patterns that resulted divided the plasmids of virulent isolates into five closely related types. Three of the five types had already been reported in Canadian and Japanese isolates, and the two new types had been found in French and Japanese isolates. Therefore, we tentatively designated these five types 85-kb type I (pREAT701), 85-kb type II (a new type), 87-kb type I (EcoRI and BamHI type 2 [V. M. Nicholson and J. F. Prescott, J. Clin. Microbiol. 35:738–740, 1997]), 87-kb type II (a new type), and 90-kb (pREL1) plasmids. The 85-kb type I plasmid was found in isolates from Argentina, Australia, Canada, and France. Plasmid 87-kb type I was isolated in specimens from Argentina, Canada, and France. The 85-kb type II plasmid appeared in isolates from France. On the other hand, plasmids 87-kb type II and 90-kb were found only in isolates from Japan. These results revealed geographic differences in the distribution of the virulence plasmids found in the five countries and suggested that the restriction fragment length polymorphism of virulence plasmids might be useful to elucidate the molecular epidemiology of virulent R. equi in the world. PMID:10488224

  9. Phenotypic and Genotypic Characterization of Virulent Yersinia enterocolitica Strains Unable To Ferment Sucrose

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guiyoule, Annie; Guinet, Françoise; Martin, Liliane; Benoit, Catherine; Desplaces, Nicole; Carniel, Elisabeth

    1998-01-01

    Several atypical sucrose-negative Yersinia strains, isolated from clinical samples and sometimes associated with symptoms, proved to have full virulence potential in in vitro and in vivo testings. DNA-relatedness studies revealed that they were authentic Yersinia enterocolitica strains. Therefore, atypical sucrose-negative Yersinia isolates should be analyzed for their virulence potential. PMID:9705424

  10. Galleria mellonella model identifies highly virulent strains among all major molecular types of Cryptococcus gattii.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carolina Firacative

    Full Text Available Cryptococcosis is mainly caused by Cryptococcus neoformans. However, the number of cases due to C. gattii is increasing, affecting mainly immunocompetent hosts. C. gattii is divided into four major molecular types, VGI to VGIV, which differ in their host range, epidemiology, antifungal susceptibility and geographic distribution. Besides studies on the Vancouver Island outbreak strains, which showed that the subtype VGIIa is highly virulent compared to the subtype VGIIb, little is known about the virulence of the other major molecular types. To elucidate the virulence potential of the major molecular types of C. gattii, Galleria mellonella larvae were inoculated with ten globally selected strains per molecular type. Survival rates were recorded and known virulence factors were studied. One VGII, one VGIII and one VGIV strain were more virulent (p 0.05, 21 (five VGI, five VGII, four VGIII and seven VGIV were less virulent (p <0.05 while one strain of each molecular type were avirulent. Cell and capsule size of all strains increased markedly during larvae infection (p <0.001. No differences in growth rate at 37°C were observed. Melanin synthesis was directly related with the level of virulence: more virulent strains produced more melanin than less virulent strains (p <0.05. The results indicate that all C. gattii major molecular types exhibit a range of virulence, with some strains having the potential to be more virulent. The study highlights the necessity to further investigate the genetic background of more and less virulent strains in order to recognize critical features, other than the known virulence factors (capsule, melanin and growth at mammalian body temperature, that maybe crucial for the development and progression of cryptococcosis.

  11. Yersinia enterocolitica of porcine origin: carriage of virulence genes and genotypic diversity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tadesse, Daniel A; Bahnson, Peter B; Funk, Julie A; Morrow, W E Morgan; Abley, Melanie J; Ponte, Valeria A; Thakur, Siddhartha; Wittum, Thomas; DeGraves, Fred J; Rajala-Schultz, Paivi J; Gebreyes, Wondwossen A

    2013-01-01

    Yersinia enterocolitica is an important foodborne pathogen, and pigs are recognized as a major reservoir and potential source of pathogenic strains to humans. A total of 172 Y. enterocolitica recovered from conventional and antimicrobial-free pig production systems from different geographic regions (North Carolina, Ohio, Michigan, Wisconsin, and Iowa) were investigated to determine their pathogenic significance to humans. Phenotypic and genotypic diversity of the isolates was assessed using antibiogram, serogrouping, and amplified fragment length polymorphism (AFLP). Carriage of chromosomal and plasmid-borne virulence genes were investigated using polymerase chain reaction. A total of 12 antimicrobial resistance patterns were identified. More than two-thirds (67.4%) of Y. enterocolitica were pan-susceptible, and 27.9% were resistant against β-lactams. The most predominant serogroup was O:3 (43%), followed by O:5 (25.6%) and O:9 (4.1%). Twenty-two of 172 (12.8%) isolates were found to carry Yersinia adhesion A (yadA), a virulence gene encoded on the Yersinia virulence plasmid. Sixty-nine (40.1%) isolates were found to carry ail gene. The ystA and ystB genes were detected in 77% and 26.2% of the strains, respectively. AFLP genotyping of isolates showed wide genotypic diversity and were grouped into nine clades with an overall genotypic similarity of 66.8-99.3%. AFLP analysis revealed that isolates from the same production system showed clonal relatedness, while more than one genotype of Y. enterocolitica circulates within a farm.

  12. Virulence Factors of Streptococcus mutans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    1986-08-01

    763512/715242 Final Report U VIRULENCE FACTORS OF STREPTOCOCCUS MUTANS U Samuel Rosen Department of Oral Biology For the Period April 1, 1983 - June 30...00 FINAL REPORT VIRULENCE FACTORS OF STREPTOCOCCUS MUTANS Sam Rosen, Irving Shklair, E. X. Beck and F. M. Beck Ohio State University Columbus,Oh and...206-212. Johnson CP, Gorss S, Hillman JD (1978). Cariogenic properties of LDH deficient mutants of streptococcus mutans . J Dent Res 57, Special Issue

  13. A meta-analysis of potential relationship between Epstein-Barr-Encoded-RNA (EBER and onset time of post-transplant lymphoproliferative disorders

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hossein Khedmat

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Epstein-Barr virus (EBV encodes two non-polyadenylated RNAs termed EBV-encoded RNAs (EBERs. In this study, we tried to find series in which data of EBER and onset time of post-transplant lymphoproliferative disorder (PTLD for patients have been documented to conduct a meta-analysis. A comprehensive search of the literature was performed by Pubmed and Google scholar to find reports indicating test results for EBER and PTLD onset in transplant patients. PTLD was considered "early onset" when it develops within the first post-transplant year. Finally, 265 patients from 15 studies have been included in the meta-analysis. The overall meta-analysis also showed a significant relation between EBER test positivity and early-onset PTLD development [relative risk (RR: 1.36; 95% CI: 1.16-1.59; P <0.001]. The i2 index was 49.8%. Our study suggests that PTLD lesions with positive EBER test are more likely to develop within the early post-transplant period. Since early-onset PTLD is supposed to have better prognosis, having a positive EBER test might not be a bad news. However, for having a precise conclusion, prospective studies are needed to be conducted.

  14. Virulent and avirulent strains of equine arteritis virus induce different quantities of TNF-α and other proinflammatory cytokines in alveolar and blood-derived equine macrophages

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Moore, Brian D.; Balasuriya, Udeni B.R.; Watson, Johanna L.; Bosio, Catharine M.; MacKay, Robert J.; MacLachlan, N. James

    2003-01-01

    Equine arteritis virus (EAV) infects endothelial cells (ECs) and macrophages in horses, and many of the clinical manifestations of equine viral arteritis (EVA) reflect vascular injury. To further evaluate the potential role of EAV-induced, macrophage-derived cytokines in the pathogenesis of EVA, we infected cultured equine alveolar macrophages (AMphi), blood monocyte-derived macrophages (BMphi), and pulmonary artery ECs with either a virulent (KY84) or an avirulent (CA95) strain of EAV. EAV infection of equine AMphi, BMphi, and ECs resulted in their activation with increased transcription of genes encoding proinflammatory mediators, including interleukin (IL)-1β, IL-6, IL-8, and tumor necrosis factor (TNF)-α. Furthermore, the virulent KY84 strain of EAV induced significantly higher levels of mRNA encoding proinflammatory cytokines in infected AMphi and BMphi than did the avirulent CA95 strain. Treatment of equine ECs with the culture supernatants of EAV-infected AMphi and BMphi also resulted in EC activation with cell surface expression of E-selectin, whereas infection of ECs with purified EAV alone caused only minimal expression of E-selectin. The presence of TNF-α in the culture supernatants of EAV-infected equine AMphi, BMphi, and ECs was confirmed by bioassay, and the virulent KY84 strain of EAV induced significantly more TNF-α in all cell types than did the avirulent CA95 strain. Thus, the data indicate that EAV-induced, macrophage-derived cytokines may contribute to the pathogenesis of EVA in horses, and that the magnitude of the cytokine response of equine AMphi, BMphi, and ECs to EAV infection reflects the virulence of the infecting virus strain

  15. Proteomics Analysis Reveals Previously Uncharacterized Virulence Factors in Vibrio proteolyticus

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ann Ray

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available Members of the genus Vibrio include many pathogens of humans and marine animals that share genetic information via horizontal gene transfer. Hence, the Vibrio pan-genome carries the potential to establish new pathogenic strains by sharing virulence determinants, many of which have yet to be characterized. Here, we investigated the virulence properties of Vibrio proteolyticus, a Gram-negative marine bacterium previously identified as part of the Vibrio consortium isolated from diseased corals. We found that V. proteolyticus causes actin cytoskeleton rearrangements followed by cell lysis in HeLa cells in a contact-independent manner. In search of the responsible virulence factor involved, we determined the V. proteolyticus secretome. This proteomics approach revealed various putative virulence factors, including active type VI secretion systems and effectors with virulence toxin domains; however, these type VI secretion systems were not responsible for the observed cytotoxic effects. Further examination of the V. proteolyticus secretome led us to hypothesize and subsequently demonstrate that a secreted hemolysin, belonging to a previously uncharacterized clan of the leukocidin superfamily, was the toxin responsible for the V. proteolyticus-mediated cytotoxicity in both HeLa cells and macrophages. Clearly, there remains an armory of yet-to-be-discovered virulence factors in the Vibrio pan-genome that will undoubtedly provide a wealth of knowledge on how a pathogen can manipulate host cells.

  16. Investigating the ?Trojan Horse? Mechanism of Yersinia pestis Virulence

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    McCutchen-Maloney, S L; Fitch, J P

    2005-02-08

    Yersinia pestis, the etiological agent of plague, is a Gram-negative, highly communicable, enteric bacterium that has been responsible for three historic plague pandemics. Currently, several thousand cases of plague are reported worldwide annually, and Y. pestis remains a considerable threat from a biodefense perspective. Y. pestis infection can manifest in three forms: bubonic, septicemic, and pneumonic plague. Of these three forms, pneumonic plague has the highest fatality rate ({approx}100% if left untreated), the shortest intervention time ({approx}24 hours), and is highly contagious. Currently, there are no rapid, widely available vaccines for plague and though plague may be treated with antibiotics, the emergence of both naturally occurring and potentially engineered antibiotic resistant strains makes the search for more effective therapies and vaccines for plague of pressing concern. The virulence mechanism of this deadly bacterium involves induction of a Type III secretion system, a syringe-like apparatus that facilitates the injection of virulence factors, termed Yersinia outer membrane proteins (Yops), into the host cell. These virulence factors inhibit phagocytosis and cytokine secretion, and trigger apoptosis of the host cell. Y. pestis virulence factors and the Type III secretion system are induced thermally, when the bacterium enters the mammalian host from the flea vector, and through host cell contact (or conditions of low Ca{sup 2+} in vitro). Apart from the temperature increase from 26 C to 37 C and host cell contact (or low Ca{sup 2+} conditions), other molecular mechanisms that influence virulence induction in Y. pestis are largely uncharacterized. This project focused on characterizing two novel mechanisms that regulate virulence factor induction in Y. pestis, immunoglobulin G (IgG) binding and quorum sensing, using a real-time reporter system to monitor induction of virulence. Incorporating a better understanding of the mechanisms of virulence

  17. Biofilm formation and virulence factor analysis of Staphylococcus aureus isolates collected from ovine mastitis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Azara, E; Longheu, C; Sanna, G; Tola, S

    2017-08-01

    To perform a phenotypic and genotypic characterization of 258 Staphylococcus aureus isolates from clinical ovine mastitis and used for the preparation of inactivated autogenous vaccines. The potential for biofilm production was determined by phenotypic test of Congo Red Agar (CRA) and by PCR for the detection of icaA/D genes. Isolates were also screened by PCR for the presence of enterotoxins (sea, seb, sec, sed and see), toxic shock syndrome toxin (tsst), leukotoxins (lukD-E, lukM and lukPV83), haemolysins (hly-β and hly-γ), autolysin (atlA) genes and encoding microbial surface components recognizing adhesive matrix molecules (MSCRAMMs: clfA, clfB, fnbA, fnbB, bbp, cna, eno, fib, epbs, sdrC, sdrD and SdrE). None of the 258 isolates showed biofilm-forming ability on CRA and harboured icaA/D genes. The most frequent pyrogenic toxin superantigen genes amplified were sec plus tsst-1, which were found strictly in combination with 71·3% of the Staph. aureus isolates tested. None of the isolates harboured the genes encoding sea and see. Of the 258 isolates tested, 159 (61·6%) possessed all lukD-E/lukM/lukPV83 genes, 123 (47·7%) harboured both hly-β/hly-γ genes, whereas almost all (97·3%) were PCR positive for atlA gene. With respect to adhesion determinants, 179 (69·4%) isolates presented simultaneously four genes (fnbA, fib, clfA and clfB) for fibronectin- and fibrinogen-binding proteins. In this search, several putative virulence determinants have been identified in ovine Staph. aureus isolates collected in Sardinia. Some of the putative virulence determinants could be considered as components of a vaccine because of their role in ovine mastitis pathogenesis. © 2017 The Society for Applied Microbiology.

  18. Single-nucleotide variations in the genes encoding the mitochondrial Hsp60/Hsp10 chaperone system and their disease-causing potential

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bross, Peter; Li, Zhijie; Hansen, Jakob

    2007-01-01

    for variations in the HSPD1 and HSPE1 genes encoding the mitochondrial Hsp60/Hsp10 chaperone complex: two patients with multiple mitochondrial enzyme deficiency, 61 sudden infant death syndrome cases (MIM: #272120), and 60 patients presenting with ethylmalonic aciduria carrying non-synonymous susceptibility...... variations in the ACADS gene (MIM: *606885 and #201470). Besides previously reported variations we detected six novel variations: two in the bidirectional promoter region, and one synonymous and three non-synonymous variations in the HSPD1 coding region. One of the non-synonymous variations was polymorphic...... in patient and control samples, and the rare variations were each only found in single patients and absent in 100 control chromosomes. Functional investigation of the effects of the variations in the promoter region and the non-synonymous variations in the coding region indicated that none of them had...

  19. The cell envelope subtilisin-like proteinase is a virulence determinant for Streptococcus suis

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    Gottschalk Marcelo

    2010-02-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Streptococcus suis is a major swine pathogen and zoonotic agent that mainly causes septicemia, meningitis, and endocarditis. It has recently been suggested that proteinases produced by S. suis (serotype 2 are potential virulence determinants. In the present study, we screened a S. suis mutant library created by the insertion of Tn917 transposon in order to isolate a mutant deficient in a cell surface proteinase. We characterized the gene and assessed the proteinase for its potential as a virulence factor. Results Two mutants (G6G and M3G possessing a single Tn917 insertion were isolated. The affected gene coded for a protein (SSU0757 that shared a high degree of identity with Streptococccus thermophilus PrtS (95.9% and, to a lesser extent, with Streptococcus agalactiae CspA (49.5%, which are cell surface serine proteinases. The SSU0757 protein had a calculated molecular mass of 169.6 kDa and contained the catalytic triad characteristic of subtilisin family proteinases: motif I (Asp200, motif II (His239, and motif III (Ser568. SSU0757 also had the Gram-positive cell wall anchoring motif (Leu-Pro-X-Thr-Gly at the carboxy-terminus, which was followed by a hydrophobic domain. All the S. suis isolates tested, which belonged to different serotypes, possessed the gene encoding the SSU0757 protein. The two mutants devoid of subtilisin-like proteinase activity had longer generation times and were more susceptible to killing by whole blood than the wild-type parent strain P1/7. The virulence of the G6G and M3G mutants was compared to the wild-type strain in the CD1 mouse model. Significant differences in mortality rates were noted between the P1/7 group and the M3G and G6G groups (p Conclusion In summary, we identified a gene coding for a cell surface subtilisin-like serine proteinase that is widely distributed in S. suis. Evidences were brought for the involvement of this proteinase in S. suis virulence.

  20. From cholera to corals: Viruses as drivers of virulence in a major coral bacterial pathogen

    KAUST Repository

    Weynberg, Karen D.

    2015-12-08

    Disease is an increasing threat to reef-building corals. One of the few identified pathogens of coral disease is the bacterium Vibrio coralliilyticus. In Vibrio cholerae, infection by a bacterial virus (bacteriophage) results in the conversion of non-pathogenic strains to pathogenic strains and this can lead to cholera pandemics. Pathogenicity islands encoded in the V. cholerae genome play an important role in pathogenesis. Here we analyse five whole genome sequences of V. coralliilyticus to examine whether virulence is similarly driven by horizontally acquired elements. We demonstrate that bacteriophage genomes encoding toxin genes with homology to those found in pathogenic V. cholerae are integrated in V. coralliilyticus genomes. Virulence factors located on chromosomal pathogenicity islands also exist in some strains of V. coralliilyticus. The presence of these genetic signatures indicates virulence in V. coralliilyticus is driven by prophages and other horizontally acquired elements. Screening for pathogens of coral disease should target conserved regions in these elements.

  1. From cholera to corals: Viruses as drivers of virulence in a major coral bacterial pathogen

    KAUST Repository

    Weynberg, Karen D.; Voolstra, Christian R.; Neave, Matthew J.; Buerger, Patrick; van Oppen, Madeleine J. H.

    2015-01-01

    Disease is an increasing threat to reef-building corals. One of the few identified pathogens of coral disease is the bacterium Vibrio coralliilyticus. In Vibrio cholerae, infection by a bacterial virus (bacteriophage) results in the conversion of non-pathogenic strains to pathogenic strains and this can lead to cholera pandemics. Pathogenicity islands encoded in the V. cholerae genome play an important role in pathogenesis. Here we analyse five whole genome sequences of V. coralliilyticus to examine whether virulence is similarly driven by horizontally acquired elements. We demonstrate that bacteriophage genomes encoding toxin genes with homology to those found in pathogenic V. cholerae are integrated in V. coralliilyticus genomes. Virulence factors located on chromosomal pathogenicity islands also exist in some strains of V. coralliilyticus. The presence of these genetic signatures indicates virulence in V. coralliilyticus is driven by prophages and other horizontally acquired elements. Screening for pathogens of coral disease should target conserved regions in these elements.

  2. Multidimensionally encoded magnetic resonance imaging.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lin, Fa-Hsuan

    2013-07-01

    Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) typically achieves spatial encoding by measuring the projection of a q-dimensional object over q-dimensional spatial bases created by linear spatial encoding magnetic fields (SEMs). Recently, imaging strategies using nonlinear SEMs have demonstrated potential advantages for reconstructing images with higher spatiotemporal resolution and reducing peripheral nerve stimulation. In practice, nonlinear SEMs and linear SEMs can be used jointly to further improve the image reconstruction performance. Here, we propose the multidimensionally encoded (MDE) MRI to map a q-dimensional object onto a p-dimensional encoding space where p > q. MDE MRI is a theoretical framework linking imaging strategies using linear and nonlinear SEMs. Using a system of eight surface SEM coils with an eight-channel radiofrequency coil array, we demonstrate the five-dimensional MDE MRI for a two-dimensional object as a further generalization of PatLoc imaging and O-space imaging. We also present a method of optimizing spatial bases in MDE MRI. Results show that MDE MRI with a higher dimensional encoding space can reconstruct images more efficiently and with a smaller reconstruction error when the k-space sampling distribution and the number of samples are controlled. Copyright © 2012 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  3. The OmpA-like protein Loa22 is essential for leptospiral virulence.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Paula Ristow

    2007-07-01

    Full Text Available Pathogenic mechanisms of Leptospira interrogans, the causal agent of leptospirosis, remain largely unknown. This is mainly due to the lack of tools for genetic manipulations of pathogenic species. In this study, we characterized a mutant obtained by insertion of the transposon Himar1 into a gene encoding a putative lipoprotein, Loa22, which has a predicted OmpA domain based on sequence identity. The resulting mutant did not express Loa22 and was attenuated in virulence in the guinea pig and hamster models of leptospirosis, whereas the genetically complemented strain was restored in Loa22 expression and virulence. Our results show that Loa22 was expressed during host infection and exposed on the cell surface. Loa22 is therefore necessary for virulence of L. interrogans in the animal model and represents, to our knowledge, the first genetically defined virulence factor in Leptospira species.

  4. trans-Acting Virulence Functions of the Octopine Ti Plasmid from Agrobacterium tumefaciens

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hille, Jacques; Kan, Jan van; Schilperoort, Rob

    1984-01-01

    All Ti plasmid-encoded virulence functions that were studied act in trans. An octopine Ti plasmid-specific vir operon, called vir-O, located on an EcoRI restriction fragment has been characterized. Sequences with promoter activity in Escherichia coli were identified for a second vir operon, called

  5. A SNARE-Like Protein and Biotin Are Implicated in Soybean Cyst Nematode Virulence.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sadia Bekal

    Full Text Available Phytoparasitic nematodes that are able to infect and reproduce on plants that are considered resistant are referred to as virulent. The mechanism(s that virulent nematodes employ to evade or suppress host plant defenses are not well understood. Here we report the use of a genetic strategy (allelic imbalance analysis to associate single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs with nematode virulence genes in Heterodera glycines, the soybean cyst nematode (SCN. To accomplish this analysis, a custom SCN SNP array was developed and used to genotype SCN F3-derived populations grown on resistant and susceptible soybean plants. Three SNPs reproducibly showed allele imbalances between nematodes grown on resistant and susceptible plants. Two candidate SCN virulence genes that were tightly linked to the SNPs were identified. One SCN gene encoded biotin synthase (HgBioB, and the other encoded a bacterial-like protein containing a putative SNARE domain (HgSLP-1. The two genes mapped to two different linkage groups. HgBioB contained sequence polymorphisms between avirulent and virulent nematodes. However, the gene encoding HgSLP-1 had reduced copy number in virulent nematode populations and appears to produce multiple forms of the protein via intron retention and alternative splicing. We show that HgSLP-1 is an esophageal-gland protein that is secreted by the nematode during plant parasitism. Furthermore, in bacterial co-expression experiments, HgSLP-1 co-purified with the SCN resistance protein Rhg1 α-SNAP, suggesting that these two proteins physically interact. Collectively our data suggest that multiple SCN genes are involved in SCN virulence, and that HgSLP-1 may function as an avirulence protein and when absent it helps SCN evade host defenses.

  6. Bacterial proteases and virulence

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Frees, Dorte; Brøndsted, Lone; Ingmer, Hanne

    2013-01-01

    signalling to short-circuit host cell processes. Common to both intra- and extracellular proteases is the tight control of their proteolytic activities. In general, substrate recognition by the intracellular proteases is highly selective which is, in part, attributed to the chaperone activity associated...... tolerance to adverse conditions such as those experienced in the host. In the membrane, HtrA performs similar functions whereas the extracellular proteases, in close contact with host components, pave the way for spreading infections by degrading host matrix components or interfering with host cell...... with the proteases either encoded within the same polypeptide or on separate subunits. In contrast, substrate recognition by extracellular proteases is less selective and therefore these enzymes are generally expressed as zymogens to prevent premature proteolytic activity that would be detrimental to the cell...

  7. [Analysis of virulence factors of Porphyromonas endodontalis based on comparative proteomics technique].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, H; Ji, H; Wu, S S; Hou, B X

    2016-12-09

    Objective: To analyze the protein expression profile and the potential virulence factors of Porphyromonas endodontalis (Pe) via comparison with that of two strains of Porphyromonas gingivalis (Pg) with high and low virulences, respectively. Methods: Whole cell comparative proteomics of Pe ATCC35406 was examined and compared with that of high virulent strain Pg W83 andlow virulent strain Pg ATCC33277, respectively. Isobaric tags for relative and absolute quantitation (iTRAQ) combined with nano liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry (Nano-LC-MS/MS) were adopted to identify and quantitate the proteins of Pe and two strains of Pg with various virulences by using the methods of isotopically labeled peptides, mass spectrometric detection and bioinformatics analysis. The biological functions of similar proteins expressed by Pe ATCC35406 and two strains of Pg were quantified and analyzed. Results: Totally 1 210 proteins were identified while Pe compared with Pg W83. There were 130 proteins (10.74% of the total proteins) expressed similarly, including 89 known functional proteins and 41 proteins of unknown functions. Totally 1 223 proteins were identified when Pe compared with Pg ATCC33277. There were 110 proteins (8.99% of the total proteins) expressed similarly, including 72 known functional proteins and 38 proteins of unknown functions. The similarly expressed proteins in Pe and Pg strains with various virulences mainly focused on catalytic activity and binding function, including recombination activation gene (RagA), lipoprotein, chaperonin Dnak, Clp family proteins (ClpC and ClpX) and various iron-binding proteins. They were involved in metabolism and cellular processes. In addition, the type and number of similar virulence proteins between Pe and high virulence Pg were higher than those between Pe and low virulence Pg. Conclusions: Lipoprotein, oxygen resistance protein, iron binding protein were probably the potential virulence factors of Pe ATCC35406. It was

  8. Spontaneous Loss of Virulence in Natural Populations of Listeria monocytogenes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maury, Mylène M; Chenal-Francisque, Viviane; Bracq-Dieye, Hélène; Han, Lei; Leclercq, Alexandre; Vales, Guillaume; Moura, Alexandra; Gouin, Edith; Scortti, Mariela; Disson, Olivier; Vázquez-Boland, José A; Lecuit, Marc

    2017-11-01

    The pathogenesis of Listeria monocytogenes depends on the ability of this bacterium to escape from the phagosome of the host cells via the action of the pore-forming toxin listeriolysin O (LLO). Expression of the LLO-encoding gene ( hly ) requires the transcriptional activator PrfA, and both hly and prfA genes are essential for L. monocytogenes virulence. Here, we used the hemolytic activity of LLO as a phenotypic marker to screen for spontaneous virulence-attenuating mutations in L. monocytogenes Sixty nonhemolytic isolates were identified among a collection of 57,820 confirmed L. monocytogenes strains isolated from a variety of sources (0.1%). In most cases (56/60; 93.3%), the nonhemolytic phenotype resulted from nonsense, missense, or frameshift mutations in prfA Five strains carried hly mutations leading to a single amino acid substitution (G299V) or a premature stop codon causing strong virulence attenuation in mice. In one strain, both hly and gshF (encoding a glutathione synthase required for full PrfA activity) were missing due to genomic rearrangements likely caused by a transposable element. The PrfA/LLO loss-of-function (PrfA - /LLO - ) mutants belonged to phylogenetically diverse clades of L. monocytogenes , and most were identified among nonclinical strains (57/60). Consistent with the rare occurrence of loss-of-virulence mutations, we show that prfA and hly are under purifying selection. Although occurring at a low frequency, PrfA - /LLO - mutational events in L. monocytogenes lead to niche restriction and open an evolutionary path for obligate saprophytism in this facultative intracellular pathogen. Copyright © 2017 Maury et al.

  9. Cationic antimicrobial peptides inactivate Shiga toxin-encoding bacteriophages

    Science.gov (United States)

    Del Cogliano, Manuel E.; Hollmann, Axel; Martinez, Melina; Semorile, Liliana; Ghiringhelli, Pablo D.; Maffía, Paulo C.; Bentancor, Leticia V.

    2017-12-01

    Shiga toxin (Stx) is the principal virulence factor during Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli (STEC) infections. We have previously reported the inactivation of bacteriophage encoding Stx after treatment with chitosan, a linear polysaccharide polymer with cationic properties. Cationic antimicrobial peptides (cAMPs) are short linear aminoacidic sequences, with a positive net charge, which display bactericidal or bacteriostatic activity against a wide range of bacterial species. They are promising novel antibiotics since they have shown bactericidal effects against multiresistant bacteria. To evaluate whether cationic properties are responsible for bacteriophage inactivation, we tested seven cationic peptides with proven antimicrobial activity as anti-bacteriophage agents, and one random sequence cationic peptide with no antimicrobial activity as a control. We observed bacteriophage inactivation after incubation with five cAMPs, but no inactivating activity was observed with the random sequence cationic peptide or with the non alpha helical cAMP Omiganan. Finally, to confirm peptide-bacteriophage interaction, zeta potential was analyzed by following changes on bacteriophage surface charges after peptide incubation. According to our results we could propose that: 1) direct interaction of peptides with phage is a necessary step for bacteriophage inactivation, 2) cationic properties are necessary but not sufficient for bacteriophage inactivation, and 3) inactivation by cationic peptides could be sequence (or structure) specific. Overall our data suggest that these peptides could be considered a new family of molecules potentially useful to decrease bacteriophage replication and Stx expression.

  10. Cationic Antimicrobial Peptides Inactivate Shiga Toxin-Encoding Bacteriophages

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Manuel E. Del Cogliano

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available Shiga toxin (Stx is the principal virulence factor during Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli (STEC infections. We have previously reported the inactivation of bacteriophage encoding Stx after treatment with chitosan, a linear polysaccharide polymer with cationic properties. Cationic antimicrobial peptides (cAMPs are short linear aminoacidic sequences, with a positive net charge, which display bactericidal or bacteriostatic activity against a wide range of bacterial species. They are promising novel antibiotics since they have shown bactericidal effects against multiresistant bacteria. To evaluate whether cationic properties are responsible for bacteriophage inactivation, we tested seven cationic peptides with proven antimicrobial activity as anti-bacteriophage agents, and one random sequence cationic peptide with no antimicrobial activity as a control. We observed bacteriophage inactivation after incubation with five cAMPs, but no inactivating activity was observed with the random sequence cationic peptide or with the non-alpha helical cAMP Omiganan. Finally, to confirm peptide-bacteriophage interaction, zeta potential was analyzed by following changes on bacteriophage surface charges after peptide incubation. According to our results we could propose that: (1 direct interaction of peptides with phage is a necessary step for bacteriophage inactivation, (2 cationic properties are necessary but not sufficient for bacteriophage inactivation, and (3 inactivation by cationic peptides could be sequence (or structure specific. Overall our data suggest that these peptides could be considered a new family of molecules potentially useful to decrease bacteriophage replication and Stx expression.

  11. Virulence determinants of pandemic influenza viruses

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tscherne, Donna M.; García-Sastre, Adolfo

    2011-01-01

    Influenza A viruses cause recurrent, seasonal epidemics and occasional global pandemics with devastating levels of morbidity and mortality. The ability of influenza A viruses to adapt to various hosts and undergo reassortment events ensures constant generation of new strains with unpredictable degrees of pathogenicity, transmissibility, and pandemic potential. Currently, the combination of factors that drives the emergence of pandemic influenza is unclear, making it impossible to foresee the details of a future outbreak. Identification and characterization of influenza A virus virulence determinants may provide insight into genotypic signatures of pathogenicity as well as a more thorough understanding of the factors that give rise to pandemics. PMID:21206092

  12. Targeted radiotherapy potentiates the cytotoxicity of a novel anti-human DR5 monoclonal antibody and the adenovirus encoding soluble TRAIL in prostate cancer

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Arafat, W.; Arafat, W.; Zhou, T.; Naoum, G.E.; Buchsbaum, D.J.

    2015-01-01

    TRAIL (tumor necrosis factor-related apoptosis-inducing ligand) induces a death signal following binding to death receptors (DR4, DR5). We have developed a novel anti-human DR-5 monoclonal antibody (TRA-8) and adenoviral encoding TRAIL (Ad/TRAIL). Herein, we are testing the combined effect of radiotherapy and TRA-8 or Ad TRAIL in prostate cancer cells. Human prostate cancer cell lines LnCap, PC-3 and DU145 were used in this study. Cells were treated either with TRA-8 alone or Ad/TRAIL, radiation alone, or a combination of each at different doses and intervals. Cell survival using the MTS assay and colony forming assay were used to determine radiosensitization. Immunohistochemistry was used to detect bax and bcl-2. Real-time PCR was performed on mRNA of treated prostate cancer cell lines. Finally, a murine model of subcutaneous prostate cancer was used to evaluate the in vivo effect. Cell survival assays detected by MTS assay showed that prostate cell lines treated with a combination of radiation and TRA-8 showed significantly lower survival than cells treated with either radiation or TRA-8 alone. Colony forming assay and cell proliferation assays showed increased killing after combination treatment with TRA-8 or Ad/TRAIL and radiation, than either single agent alone. Mechanistic studies showed that the killing effect was due to induction of apoptosis mostly by increased expression of bax in TRA-8 or Ad/TRAIL treated cells. Additionally, RT-PCR showed an increased copy number of bax in most cells treated with TRA-8 and radiation. It is concluded that radiation and TRA-8 or Ad/ TRAIL produced a synergistic effect in refractory prostrate cancer.

  13. A theoretical model of the evolution of virulence in sexually transmitted HIV/AIDS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    FAB Coutinho

    1999-08-01

    Full Text Available INTRODUCTION: The evolution of virulence in host-parasite relationships has been the subject of several publications. In the case of HIV virulence, some authors suggest that the evolution of HIV virulence correlates with the rate of acquisition of new sexual partners. In contrast some other authors argue that the level of HIV virulence is independent of the sexual activity of the host population. METHODS: Provide a mathematical model for the study of the potential influence of human sexual behaviour on the evolution of virulence of HIV is provided. RESULTS: The results indicated that, when the probability of acquisition of infection is a function both of the sexual activity and of the virulence level of HIV strains, the evolution of HIV virulence correlates positively with the rate of acquisition of new sexual partners. CONCLUSION: It is concluded that in the case of a host population with a low (high rate of exchange of sexual partners the evolution of HIV virulence is such that the less (more virulent strain prevails.

  14. A theoretical model of the evolution of virulence in sexually transmitted HIV/AIDS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Coutinho FAB

    1999-01-01

    Full Text Available INTRODUCTION: The evolution of virulence in host-parasite relationships has been the subject of several publications. In the case of HIV virulence, some authors suggest that the evolution of HIV virulence correlates with the rate of acquisition of new sexual partners. In contrast some other authors argue that the level of HIV virulence is independent of the sexual activity of the host population. METHODS: Provide a mathematical model for the study of the potential influence of human sexual behaviour on the evolution of virulence of HIV is provided. RESULTS: The results indicated that, when the probability of acquisition of infection is a function both of the sexual activity and of the virulence level of HIV strains, the evolution of HIV virulence correlates positively with the rate of acquisition of new sexual partners. CONCLUSION: It is concluded that in the case of a host population with a low (high rate of exchange of sexual partners the evolution of HIV virulence is such that the less (more virulent strain prevails.

  15. Systems analysis of multiple regulator perturbations allows discovery of virulence factors in Salmonella

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Yoon, Hyunjin; Ansong, Charles; McDermott, Jason E.; Gritsenko, Marina A.; Smith, Richard D.; Heffron, Fred; Adkins, Joshua N.

    2011-06-28

    Background: Systemic bacterial infections are highly regulated and complex processes that are orchestrated by numerous virulence factors. Genes that are coordinately controlled by the set of regulators required for systemic infection are potentially required for pathogenicity. Results: In this study we present a systems biology approach in which sample-matched multi-omic measurements of fourteen virulence-essential regulator mutants were coupled with computational network analysis to efficiently identify Salmonella virulence factors. Immunoblot experiments verified network-predicted virulence factors and a subset was determined to be secreted into the host cytoplasm, suggesting that they are virulence factors directly interacting with host cellular components. Two of these, SrfN and PagK2, were required for full mouse virulence and were shown to be translocated independent of either of the type III secretion systems in Salmonella or the type III injectisome-related flagellar mechanism. Conclusions: Integrating multi-omic datasets from Salmonella mutants lacking virulence regulators not only identified novel virulence factors but also defined a new class of translocated effectors involved in pathogenesis. The success of this strategy at discovery of known and novel virulence factors suggests that the approach may have applicability for other bacterial pathogens.

  16. Genome mining for new α-amylase and glucoamylase encoding sequences and high level expression of a glucoamylase from Talaromyces stipitatus for potential raw starch hydrolysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xiao, Zhizhuang; Wu, Meiqun; Grosse, Stephan; Beauchemin, Manon; Lévesque, Michelle; Lau, Peter C K

    2014-01-01

    Mining fungal genomes for glucoamylase and α-amylase encoding sequences led to the selection of 23 candidates, two of which (designated TSgam-2 and NFamy-2) were advanced to testing for cooked or raw starch hydrolysis. TSgam-2 is a 66-kDa glucoamylase recombinantly produced in Pichia pastoris and originally derived for Talaromyces stipitatus. When harvested in a 20-L bioreactor at high cell density (OD600 > 200), the secreted TSgam-2 enzyme activity from P. pastoris strain GS115 reached 800 U/mL. In a 6-L working volume of a 10-L fermentation, the TSgam-2 protein yield was estimated to be ∼8 g with a specific activity of 360 U/mg. In contrast, the highest activity of NFamy-2, a 70-kDa α-amylase originally derived from Neosartorya fischeri, and expressed in P. pastoris KM71 only reached 8 U/mL. Both proteins were purified and characterized in terms of pH and temperature optima, kinetic parameters, and thermostability. TSgam-2 was more thermostable than NFamy-2 with a respective half-life (t1/2) of >300 min at 55 °C and >200 min at 40 °C. The kinetic parameters for raw starch adsorption of TSgam-2 and NFamy-2 were also determined. A combination of NFamy-2 and TSgam-2 hydrolyzed cooked potato and triticale starch into glucose with yields, 71-87 %, that are competitive with commercially available α-amylases. In the hydrolysis of raw starch, the best hydrolysis condition was seen with a sequential addition of 40 U of a thermostable Bacillus globigii amylase (BgAmy)/g starch at 80 °C for 16 h, and 40 U TSgam-2/g starch at 45 °C for 24 h. The glucose released was 8.7 g/10 g of triticale starch and 7.9 g/10 g of potato starch, representing 95 and 86 % of starch degradation rate, respectively.

  17. Extended-Spectrum-Beta-Lactamase- and Plasmid-Encoded Cephamycinase-Producing Enterobacteria in the Broiler Hatchery as a Potential Mode of Pseudo-Vertical Transmission.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Projahn, Michaela; Daehre, Katrin; Roesler, Uwe; Friese, Anika

    2017-01-01

    Antimicrobial resistance through extended-spectrum beta-lactamases (ESBLs) and transferable (plasmid-encoded) cephamycinases (pAmpCs) represents an increasing problem in human and veterinary medicine. The presence of ESBL-/pAmpC-producing commensal enterobacteria in farm animals, such as broiler chickens, is considered one possible source of food contamination and could therefore also be relevant for human colonization. Studies on transmission routes along the broiler production chain showed that 1-day-old hatchlings are already affected. In this study, ESBL-/pAmpC-positive broiler parent flocks and their corresponding eggs, as well as various environmental and air samples from the hatchery, were analyzed. The eggs were investigated concerning ESBL-/pAmpC-producing enterobacteria on the outer eggshell surface (before/after disinfection), the inner eggshell surface, and the egg content. Isolates were analyzed concerning their species, their phylogroup in the case of Escherichia coli strains, the respective resistance genes, and the phenotypical antibiotic resistance. Of the tested eggs, 0.9% (n = 560) were contaminated on their outer shell surface. Further analyses using pulsed-field gel electrophoresis showed a relationship of these strains to those isolated from the corresponding parent flocks, which demonstrates a pseudo-vertical transfer of ESBL-/pAmpC-producing enterobacteria into the hatchery. Resistant enterobacteria were also found in environmental samples from the hatchery, such as dust or surfaces which could pose as a possible contamination source for the hatchlings. All 1-day-old chicks tested negative directly after hatching. The results show a possible entry of ESBL-/pAmpC-producing enterobacteria from the parent flocks into the hatchery; however, the impact of the hatchery on colonization of the hatchlings seems to be low. ESBL-/pAmpC-producing enterobacteria occur frequently in broiler-fattening farms. Recent studies investigated the prevalence and

  18. Comparative transcript profiling of Candida albicans and Candida dubliniensis identifies SFL2, a C. albicans gene required for virulence in a reconstituted epithelial infection model.

    LENUS (Irish Health Repository)

    Spiering, Martin J

    2010-02-01

    Candida albicans and Candida dubliniensis are closely related species displaying differences in virulence and genome content, therefore providing potential opportunities to identify novel C. albicans virulence genes. C. albicans gene arrays were used for comparative analysis of global gene expression in the two species in reconstituted human oral epithelium (RHE). C. albicans (SC5314) showed upregulation of hypha-specific and virulence genes within 30 min postinoculation, coinciding with rapid induction of filamentation and increased RHE damage. C. dubliniensis (CD36) showed no detectable upregulation of hypha-specific genes, grew as yeast, and caused limited RHE damage. Several genes absent or highly divergent in C. dubliniensis were upregulated in C. albicans. One such gene, SFL2 (orf19.3969), encoding a putative heat shock factor, was deleted in C. albicans. DeltaDeltasfl2 cells failed to filament under a range of hypha-inducing conditions and exhibited greatly reduced RHE damage, reversed by reintroduction of SFL2 into the DeltaDeltasfl2 strain. Moreover, SFL2 overexpression in C. albicans triggered hyphal morphogenesis. Although SFL2 deletion had no apparent effect on host survival in the murine model of systemic infection, DeltaDeltasfl2 strain-infected kidney tissues contained only yeast cells. These results suggest a role for SFL2 in morphogenesis and an indirect role in C. albicans pathogenesis in epithelial tissues.

  19. Bacterial Prostatitis: Bacterial Virulence, Clinical Outcomes, and New Directions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krieger, John N; Thumbikat, Praveen

    2016-02-01

    Four prostatitis syndromes are recognized clinically: acute bacterial prostatitis, chronic bacterial prostatitis, chronic prostatitis/chronic pelvic pain syndrome, and asymptomatic prostatitis. Because Escherichia coli represents the most common cause of bacterial prostatitis, we investigated the importance of bacterial virulence factors and antimicrobial resistance in E. coli strains causing prostatitis and the potential association of these characteristics with clinical outcomes. A structured literature review revealed that we have limited understanding of the virulence-associated characteristics of E. coli causing acute prostatitis. Therefore, we completed a comprehensive microbiological and molecular investigation of a unique strain collection isolated from healthy young men. We also considered new data from an animal model system suggesting certain E. coli might prove important in the etiology of chronic prostatitis/chronic pelvic pain syndrome. Our human data suggest that E. coli needs multiple pathogenicity-associated traits to overcome anatomic and immune responses in healthy young men without urological risk factors. The phylogenetic background and accumulation of an exceptional repertoire of extraintestinal pathogenic virulence-associated genes indicate that these E. coli strains belong to a highly virulent subset of uropathogenic variants. In contrast, antibiotic resistance confers little added advantage to E. coli strains in these healthy outpatients. Our animal model data also suggest that certain pathogenic E. coli may be important in the etiology of chronic prostatitis/chronic pelvic pain syndrome through mechanisms that are dependent on the host genetic background and the virulence of the bacterial strain.

  20. Metabolism and virulence in Neisseria meningitidis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christoph eSchoen

    2014-08-01

    Full Text Available A longstanding question in infection biology addresses the genetic basis for invasive behaviour in commensal pathogens. A prime example for such a pathogen is Neisseria meningitidis. On the one hand it is a harmless commensal bacterium exquisitely adapted to humans, and on the other hand it sometimes behaves like a ferocious pathogen causing potentially lethal disease such as sepsis and acute bacterial meningitis. Despite the lack of a classical repertoire of virulence genes in N. meningitidis separating commensal from invasive strains, molecular epidemiology suggests that carriage and invasive strains belong to genetically distinct populations. In recent years, it has become increasingly clear that metabolic adaptation enables meningococci to exploit host resources, supporting the concept of nutritional virulence as a crucial determinant of invasive capability. Here, we discuss the contribution of core metabolic pathways in the context of colonization and invasion with special emphasis on results from genome-wide surveys. The metabolism of lactate, the oxidative stress response, and, in particular, glutathione metabolism as well as the denitrification pathway provide examples of how meningococcal metabolism is intimately linked to pathogenesis. We further discuss evidence from genome-wide approaches regarding potential metabolic differences between strains from hyperinvasive and carriage lineages and present new data assessing in vitro growth differences of strains from these two populations. We hypothesize that strains from carriage and hyperinvasive lineages differ in the expression of regulatory genes involved particularly in stress responses and amino acid metabolism under infection conditions.

  1. Bacteriophage-encoded shiga toxin gene in atypical bacterial host

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Casas Veronica

    2011-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Contamination from fecal bacteria in recreational waters is a major health concern since bacteria capable of causing human disease can be found in animal feces. The Dog Beach area of Ocean Beach in San Diego, California is a beach prone to closures due to high levels of fecal indicator bacteria (FIB. A potential source of these FIB could be the canine feces left behind by owners who do not clean up after their pets. We tested this hypothesis by screening the DNA isolated from canine feces for the bacteriophage-encoded stx gene normally found in the virulent strains of the fecal bacterium Escherichia coli. Results Twenty canine fecal samples were collected, processed for total and bacterial fraction DNA, and screened by PCR for the stx gene. The stx gene was detected in the total and bacterial fraction DNA of one fecal sample. Bacterial isolates were then cultivated from the stx-positive fecal sample. Eighty nine of these canine fecal bacterial isolates were screened by PCR for the stx gene. The stx gene was detected in five of these isolates. Sequencing and phylogenetic analyses of 16S rRNA gene PCR products from the canine fecal bacterial isolates indicated that they were Enterococcus and not E. coli. Conclusions The bacteriophage-encoded stx gene was found in multiple species of bacteria cultivated from canine fecal samples gathered at the shoreline of the Dog Beach area of Ocean Beach in San Diego, California. The canine fecal bacteria carrying the stx gene were not the typical E. coli host and were instead identified through phylogenetic analyses as Enterococcus. This suggests a large degree of horizontal gene transfer of exotoxin genes in recreational waters.

  2. Prevalence of clonal complexes and virulence genes among commensal and invasive Staphylococcus aureus isolates in Sweden.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gunlög Rasmussen

    Full Text Available Staphylococcus aureus encodes a remarkable number of virulence factors which may contribute to its pathogenicity and ability to cause invasive disease. The main objective of this study was to evaluate the association between S. aureus invasiveness and bacterial genotype, in terms of the presence of virulence genes and affiliation to clonal complexes. Also, the significance of different virulence genes, mainly adhesins, for the development of infective endocarditis was investigated. DNA microarray technology was used to analyze 134 S. aureus isolates, all methicillin-susceptible, derived from three groups of clinically well-characterized patients: nasal carriers (n=46, bacteremia (n=55, and bacteremia with infective endocarditis (n=33. Invasive isolates were dominant in four of the major clonal complexes: 5, 8, 15, and 25. Of the 170 virulence genes examined, those encoding accessory gene regulator group II (agr II, capsule polysaccharide serotype 5 (cap5, and adhesins such as S. aureus surface protein G (sasG and fibronectin-binding protein B (fnbB were found to be associated with invasive disease. The same was shown for the leukocidin genes lukD/lukE, as well as the genes encoding serine protease A and B (splA/splB, staphylococcal complement inhibitor (scn and the staphylococcal exotoxin-like protein (setC or selX. In addition, there was a trend of higher prevalence of certain genes or gene clusters (sasG, agr II, cap5 among isolates causing infective endocarditis compared to other invasive isolates. In most cases, the presence of virulence genes was linked to clonal complex affiliation. In conclusion, certain S. aureus clonal lineages harboring specific sets of virulence genes seem to be more successful in causing invasive disease.

  3. Two-component regulators involved in the global control of virulence in Erwinia carotovora subsp. carotovora.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eriksson, A R; Andersson, R A; Pirhonen, M; Palva, E T

    1998-08-01

    Production of extracellular, plant cell wall degrading enzymes, the main virulence determinants of the plant pathogen Erwinia carotovora subsp. carotovora, is coordinately controlled by a complex regulatory network. Insertion mutants in the exp (extracellular enzyme production) loci exhibit pleiotropic defects in virulence and the growth-phase-dependent transcriptional activation of genes encoding extracellular enzymes. Two new exp mutations, designated expA and expS, were characterized. Introduction of the corresponding wild-type alleles to the mutants complemented both the lack of virulence and the impaired production of plant cell wall degrading enzymes. The expA gene was shown to encode a 24-kDa polypeptide that is structurally and functionally related to the uvrY gene product of Escherichia coli and the GacA response regulator of Pseudomonas fluorescens. Functional similarity of expA and uvrY was demonstrated by genetic complementation. The expA gene is organized in an operon together with a uvrC-like gene, identical to the organization of uvrY and uvrC in E. coli. The unlinked expS gene encodes a putative sensor kinase that shows 92% identity to the recently described rpfA gene product from another E. carotovora subsp. carotovora strain. Our data suggest that ExpS and ExpA are members of two-component sensor kinase and response regulator families, respectively. These two proteins might interact in controlling virulence gene expression in E. carotovora subsp. carotovora.

  4. Ciprofloxacin and Trimethoprim Cause Phage Induction and Virulence Modulation in Staphylococcus aureus

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goerke, Christiane; Köller, Johanna; Wolz, Christiane

    2006-01-01

    In Staphylococcus aureus strains of human origin, phages which integrate into the chromosomal gene coding for β-hemolysin (hlb) are widely distributed. Most of them encode accessory virulence determinants such as staphylokinase (sak) or enterotoxins. Here, we analyzed the effects of ciprofloxacin and trimethoprim on phage induction and expression of phage-encoded virulence factors by using isolates from patients with cystic fibrosis for which the induction of hlb-converting phages was demonstrated in vivo (C. Goerke, S. Matias y Papenberg, S. Dasbach, K. Dietz, R. Ziebach, B. C. Kahl, and C. Wolz, J. Infect. Dis. 189:724-734, 2004) as well as a φ13 lysogen of phage-cured strain 8325-4. Treatment of lysogens with subinhibitory concentrations of either antibiotic resulted in (i) delysogenization of strains resembling the isolates picked up after chronic lung infection and (ii) replication of phages in the bacterial host in a dose-dependent manner. Ciprofloxacin treatment resulted in enhanced recA transcription, indicating involvement of the SOS response in phage mobilization. Induction of φ13 was linked to elevated expression of the phage-encoded virulence gene sak, chiefly due to the activation of latent phage promoters. In summary, we could show the induction of hlb-converting phages and a subsequent virulence modulation of the host bacterium by ciprofloxacin and trimethoprim. PMID:16377683

  5. Landscape encodings enhance optimization.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Konstantin Klemm

    Full Text Available Hard combinatorial optimization problems deal with the search for the minimum cost solutions (ground states of discrete systems under strong constraints. A transformation of state variables may enhance computational tractability. It has been argued that these state encodings are to be chosen invertible to retain the original size of the state space. Here we show how redundant non-invertible encodings enhance optimization by enriching the density of low-energy states. In addition, smooth landscapes may be established on encoded state spaces to guide local search dynamics towards the ground state.

  6. Landscape Encodings Enhance Optimization

    Science.gov (United States)

    Klemm, Konstantin; Mehta, Anita; Stadler, Peter F.

    2012-01-01

    Hard combinatorial optimization problems deal with the search for the minimum cost solutions (ground states) of discrete systems under strong constraints. A transformation of state variables may enhance computational tractability. It has been argued that these state encodings are to be chosen invertible to retain the original size of the state space. Here we show how redundant non-invertible encodings enhance optimization by enriching the density of low-energy states. In addition, smooth landscapes may be established on encoded state spaces to guide local search dynamics towards the ground state. PMID:22496860

  7. Contrasting exome constancy and regulatory region variation in the gene encoding CYP3A4: an examination of the extent and potential implications.

    OpenAIRE

    Creemer, O. J.; Ansari-Pour, N.; Ekong, R.; Tarekegn, A.; Plaster, C.; Bains, R. K.; Itan, Y.; Bekele, E.; Bradman, N.

    2016-01-01

    OBJECTIVE: CYP3A4 expression varies up to 100-fold among individuals, and, to date, genetic causes remain elusive. As a major drug-metabolizing enzyme, elucidation of such genetic causes would increase the potential for introducing personalized dose adjustment of therapies involving CYP3A4 drug substrates. The foetal CYP3A isoform, CYP3A7, is reported to be expressed in ∼10% of European adults and may thus contribute towards the metabolism of endogenous substances and CYP3A drug substrates. H...

  8. The Capsule Is a Virulence Determinant in the Pathogenesis of Pasteurella multocida M1404 (B:2)

    OpenAIRE

    Boyce, John D.; Adler, Ben

    2000-01-01

    Capsules from a range of pathogenic bacteria are key virulence determinants, and the capsule has been implicated in virulence in Pasteurella multocida. We have previously identified and determined the nucleotide sequence of the P. multocida M1404 (B:2) capsule biosynthetic locus (J. D. Boyce, J. Y. Chung, and B. Adler, Vet. Microbiol. 72:121–134, 2000). The cap locus consists of 15 genes, which can be grouped into three functional regions. Regions 1 and 3 contain genes proposed to encode prot...

  9. Identification of virulence genes carried by bacteriophages obtained from clinically isolated methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Karasartova, Djursun; Cavusoglu, Zeynep Burcin; Turegun, Buse; Ozsan, Murat T; Şahin, Fikret

    2016-12-01

    Bacteriophages play an important role in the pathogenicity of Staphylococcus aureus (S. aureus) either by carrying accessory virulence factors or several superantigens. Despite their importance, there are not many studies showing the actual distribution of the virulence genes carried by the prophages obtained from the clinically isolated Staphylococcus. In this study, we investigated prophages obtained from methicillin-resistant S. aureus (MRSA) strains isolated from hospital- and community-associated (HA-CA) infections for the virulence factors. In the study, 43 phages isolated from 48 MRSA were investigated for carrying toxin genes including the sak, eta, lukF-PV, sea, selp, sek, seg, seq chp, and scn virulence genes using polymerase chain reaction (PCR) and Southern blot. Restriction fragment length polymorphism was used to analyze phage genomes to investigate the relationship between the phage profiles and the toxin genes' presence. MRSA strains isolated from HA infections tended to have higher prophage presence than the MRSA strains obtained from the CA infections (97% and 67%, respectively). The study showed that all the phages with the exception of one phage contained one or more virulence genes in their genomes with different combinations. The most common toxin genes found were sea (83%) followed by sek (77%) and seq (64%). The study indicates that prophages encode a significant proportion of MRSA virulence factors.

  10. Blind encoding into qudits

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Shaari, J.S.; Wahiddin, M.R.B.; Mancini, S.

    2008-01-01

    We consider the problem of encoding classical information into unknown qudit states belonging to any basis, of a maximal set of mutually unbiased bases, by one party and then decoding by another party who has perfect knowledge of the basis. Working with qudits of prime dimensions, we point out a no-go theorem that forbids 'shift' operations on arbitrary unknown states. We then provide the necessary conditions for reliable encoding/decoding

  11. An encoding device and a method of encoding

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    2012-01-01

    The present invention relates to an encoding device, such as an optical position encoder, for encoding input from an object, and a method for encoding input from an object, for determining a position of an object that interferes with light of the device. The encoding device comprises a light source...... in the area in the space and may interfere with the light, which interference may be encoded into a position or activation....

  12. Porphyromonas gingivalis : Its virulence and vaccine

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nymphea Pandit

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Background: The microbial florae in adult periodontitis lesions are comprised of anaerobic rods with Porphyromonas gingivalis as one of the major components (Slots 1976; Slots 1979; and Tanner et al., 1979. P. gingivalis is a black-pigmented gram-negative anaerobic rod and a secondary colonizer of dental plaque requiring antecedent organisms. The presence of this organism either alone or as a mixed infection with other bacteria and with the absence of beneficial species appears to be essential for disease activity. It is a predominant member of the subgingival microbiota in disease. It possesses and "excretes" numerous potentially toxic virulence factors. Aim of this study is to perform a systematic review of studies on P. gingivalis and its virulence factors with a special focus on its vaccine. Materials and Methods: An electronic and manual search based on agreed search phrases between the primary investigator and a secondary investigator was performed for the literature review till January 2014. The articles that were identified by this systematic review (total of 190 were analyzed in detail, which included the study of inference and conclusion. Conclusions: Within the limits of this systematic review, it can be concluded that P. gingivalis induce immune inflammatory response in periodontitis subjects. Therapeutic vaccines need to be developed and studied for their efficacy in controlling periodontitis.

  13. Contrasting exome constancy and regulatory region variation in the gene encoding CYP3A4: an examination of the extent and potential implications.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Creemer, Olivia J; Ansari-Pour, Naser; Ekong, Rosemary; Tarekegn, Ayele; Plaster, Christopher; Bains, Ripudaman K; Itan, Yuval; Bekele, Endashaw; Bradman, Neil

    2016-06-01

    CYP3A4 expression varies up to 100-fold among individuals, and, to date, genetic causes remain elusive. As a major drug-metabolizing enzyme, elucidation of such genetic causes would increase the potential for introducing personalized dose adjustment of therapies involving CYP3A4 drug substrates. The foetal CYP3A isoform, CYP3A7, is reported to be expressed in ∼10% of European adults and may thus contribute towards the metabolism of endogenous substances and CYP3A drug substrates. However, little is known about the distribution of the variant expressed in the adult. We resequenced the exons, flanking introns, regulatory elements and 3'UTR of CYP3A4 in five Ethiopian populations and incorporated data from the 1000 Genomes Project. Using bioinformatic analysis, we assessed likely consequences of observed CYP3A4 genomic variation. We also conducted the first extensive geographic survey of alleles associated with adult expression of CYP3A7 - that is, CYP3A7*1B and CYP3A7*1C. Ethiopia contained 60 CYP3A4 variants (26 novel) and more variants (>1%) than all non-African populations combined. No nonsynonymous mutation was found in the homozygous form or at more than 2.8% in any population. Seventy-nine per cent of haplotypes contained 3'UTR and/or regulatory region variation with striking pairwise population differentiation, highlighting the potential for interethnic variation in CYP3A4 expression. Conversely, coding region variation showed that significant interethnic variation is unlikely at the protein level. CYP3A7*1C was found at up to 17.5% in North African populations and in significant linkage disequilibrium with CYP3A5*3, indicating that adult expression of the foetal isoform is likely to be accompanied by reduced or null expression of CYP3A5.

  14. Nigribactin, a Novel Siderophore from Vibrio nigripulchritudo, Modulates Staphylococcus aureus Virulence Gene Expression

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nielsen, Anita; Månsson, Maria; Wietz, Matthias

    2012-01-01

    Staphylococcus aureus is a serious human pathogen that employs a number of virulence factors as part of its pathogenesis. The purpose of the present study was to explore marine bacteria as a source of compounds that modulate virulence gene expression in S. aureus. During the global marine Galathea...... 3 expedition, a strain collection was established comprising bacteria that express antimicrobial activity against Vibrio anguillarum and/or Staphylococcus aureus. Within this collection we searched colony material, culture supernatants, and cell extracts for virulence modulating activity showing......, enterobactin, failed to influence S. aureus virulence gene expression. This study shows that marine microorganisms produce compounds with potential use in therapeutic strategies targeting virulence rather than viability of human pathogens....

  15. Genomic characterization of Haemophilus parasuis SH0165, a highly virulent strain of serovar 5 prevalent in China.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zhuofei Xu

    Full Text Available Haemophilus parasuis can be either a commensal bacterium of the porcine respiratory tract or an opportunistic pathogen causing Glässer's disease, a severe systemic disease that has led to significant economical losses in the pig industry worldwide. We determined the complete genomic sequence of H. parasuis SH0165, a highly virulent strain of serovar 5, which was isolated from a hog pen in North China. The single circular chromosome was 2,269,156 base pairs in length and contained 2,031 protein-coding genes. Together with the full spectrum of genes detected by the analysis of metabolic pathways, we confirmed that H. parasuis generates ATP via both fermentation and respiration, and possesses an intact TCA cycle for anabolism. In addition to possessing the complete pathway essential for the biosynthesis of heme, this pathogen was also found to be well-equipped with different iron acquisition systems, such as the TonB system and ABC-type transport complexes, to overcome iron limitation during infection and persistence. We identified a number of genes encoding potential virulence factors, such as type IV fimbriae and surface polysaccharides. Analysis of the genome confirmed that H. parasuis is naturally competent, as genes related to DNA uptake are present. A nine-mer DNA uptake signal sequence (ACAAGCGGT, identical to that found in Actinobacillus pleuropneumoniae and Mannheimia haemolytica, followed by similar downstream motifs, was identified in the SH0165 genome. Genomic and phylogenetic comparisons with other Pasteurellaceae species further indicated that H. parasuis was closely related to another swine pathogenic bacteria A. pleuropneumoniae. The comprehensive genetic analysis presented here provides a foundation for future research on the metabolism, natural competence and virulence of H. parasuis.

  16. Role of Streptococcus pneumoniae OM001 operon in capsular polysaccharide production, virulence and survival in human saliva.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ahmad, Zuleeza; Harvey, Richard M; Paton, James C; Standish, Alistair J; Morona, Renato

    2018-01-01

    Streptococcus pneumoniae is the leading cause of community-acquired pneumonia in all ages worldwide, and with ever-increasing antibiotic resistance, the understanding of its pathogenesis and spread is as important as ever. Recently, we reported the presence of a Low Molecular Weight Tyrosine Phosphatase (LMWPTP) Spd1837 in the pneumococcus. This protein is encoded in an operon, OM001 with two other genes, with previous work implicating this operon as important for pneumococcal virulence. Thus, we set out to investigate the role of the individual genes in the operon during pneumococcal pathogenesis. As LMWPTPs play a major role in capsular polysaccharide (CPS) biosynthesis in many bacteria, we tested the effect of mutating spd1837 and its adjacent genes, spd1836 and spd1838 on CPS levels. Our results suggest that individual deletion of the genes, including the LMWPTP, did not modulate CPS levels, in multiple conditions, and in different strain backgrounds. Following in vivo studies, Spd1836 was identified as a novel virulence factor during pneumococcal invasive disease, in both the lungs and blood, with this protein alone responsible for the effects of operon's role in virulence. We also showed that a deletion in spd1836, spd1838 or the overall OM001 operon reduced survival in human saliva during the conditions that mimic transmission compared to the wildtype strain. With studies suggesting that survival in human saliva may be important for transmission, this study identifies Spd1836 and Spd1838 as transmission factors, potentially facilitating the spread of the pneumococcus from person to person. Overall, this study hopes to further our understanding of the bacterial transmission that precedes disease and outbreaks.

  17. Natural Selection in Virulence Genes of Francisella tularensis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gunnell, Mark K; Robison, Richard A; Adams, Byron J

    2016-06-01

    A fundamental tenet of evolution is that alleles that are under negative selection are often deleterious and confer no evolutionary advantage. Negatively selected alleles are removed from the gene pool and are eventually extinguished from the population. Conversely, alleles under positive selection do confer an evolutionary advantage and lead to an increase in the overall fitness of the organism. These alleles increase in frequency until they eventually become fixed in the population. Francisella tularensis is a zoonotic pathogen and a potential biothreat agent. The most virulent type of F. tularensis, Type A, is distributed across North America with Type A.I occurring mainly in the east and Type A.II appearing mainly in the west. F. tularensis is thought to be a genome in decay (losing genes) because of the relatively large number of pseudogenes present in its genome. We hypothesized that the observed frequency of gene loss/pseudogenes may be an artifact of evolution in response to a changing environment, and that genes involved in virulence should be under strong positive selection. To test this hypothesis, we sequenced and compared whole genomes of Type A.I and A.II isolates. We analyzed a subset of virulence and housekeeping genes from several F. tularensis subspecies genomes to ascertain the presence and extent of positive selection. Eleven previously identified virulence genes were screened for positive selection along with 10 housekeeping genes. Analyses of selection yielded one housekeeping gene and 7 virulence genes which showed significant evidence of positive selection at loci implicated in cell surface structures and membrane proteins, metabolism and biosynthesis, transcription, translation and cell separation, and substrate binding and transport. Our results suggest that while the loss of functional genes through disuse could be accelerated by negative selection, the genome decay in Francisella could also be the byproduct of adaptive evolution

  18. Viability and Virulence of Entomopathogenic Nematodes Exposed to Ultraviolet Radiation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shapiro-Ilan, David I; Hazir, Selcuk; Lete, Luis

    2015-09-01

    is not a sufficient measure for potential impact on biocontrol efficacy as other characters such as virulence may be severely affected even when viability remains high.

  19. Rare mutations and potentially damaging missense variants in genes encoding fibrillar collagens and proteins involved in their production are candidates for risk for preterm premature rupture of membranes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Modi, Bhavi P; Teves, Maria E; Pearson, Laurel N; Parikh, Hardik I; Chaemsaithong, Piya; Sheth, Nihar U; York, Timothy P; Romero, Roberto; Strauss, Jerome F

    2017-01-01

    Preterm premature rupture of membranes (PPROM) is the leading identifiable cause of preterm birth with ~ 40% of preterm births being associated with PPROM and occurs in 1% - 2% of all pregnancies. We hypothesized that multiple rare variants in fetal genes involved in extracellular matrix synthesis would associate with PPROM, based on the assumption that impaired elaboration of matrix proteins would reduce fetal membrane tensile strength, predisposing to unscheduled rupture. We performed whole exome sequencing (WES) on neonatal DNA derived from pregnancies complicated by PPROM (49 cases) and healthy term deliveries (20 controls) to identify candidate mutations/variants. Genotyping for selected variants from the WES study was carried out on an additional 188 PPROM cases and 175 controls. All mothers were self-reported African Americans, and a panel of ancestry informative markers was used to control for genetic ancestry in all genetic association tests. In support of the primary hypothesis, a statistically significant genetic burden (all samples combined, SKAT-O p-value = 0.0225) of damaging/potentially damaging rare variants was identified in the genes of interest-fibrillar collagen genes, which contribute to fetal membrane strength and integrity. These findings suggest that the fetal contribution to PPROM is polygenic, and driven by an increased burden of rare variants that may also contribute to the disparities in rates of preterm birth among African Americans.

  20. Cyt toxin expression reveals an inverse regulation of insect and plant virulence factors of Dickeya dadantii.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Costechareyre, Denis; Dridi, Bedis; Rahbé, Yvan; Condemine, Guy

    2010-12-01

    The plant pathogenic bacteria Dickeya dadantii is also a pathogen of the pea aphid Acyrthosiphon pisum. The genome of the bacteria contains four cyt genes, encoding homologues of Bacillus thuringiensis Cyt toxins, which are involved in its pathogenicity to insects. We show here that these genes are transcribed as an operon, and we determined the conditions necessary for their expression. Their expression is induced at high temperature and at an osmolarity equivalent to that found in the plant phloem sap. The regulators of cyt genes have also been identified: their expression is repressed by H-NS and VfmE and activated by PecS. These genes are already known to regulate plant virulence factors, but in an opposite way. When tested in a virulence assay by ingestion, the pecS mutant was almost non-pathogenic while hns and vfmE mutants behaved in the same way as the wild-type strain. Mutants of other regulators of plant virulence, GacA, OmpR and PhoP, that do not control Cyt toxin production, also showed reduced pathogenicity. In an assay by injection of bacteria, the gacA strain was less pathogenic but, surprisingly, the pecS mutant was slightly more virulent. These results show that Cyt toxins are not the only virulence factors required to kill aphids, and that these factors act at different stages of the infection. Moreover, their production is controlled by general virulence regulators known for their role in plant virulence. This integration could indicate that virulence towards insects is a normal mode of life for D. dadantii. © 2010 Society for Applied Microbiology and Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

  1. Salmonella-secreted Virulence Factors

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Heffron, Fred; Niemann, George; Yoon, Hyunjin; Kidwai, Afshan S.; Brown, Roslyn N.; McDermott, Jason E.; Smith, Richard D.; Adkins, Joshua N.

    2011-05-01

    In this short review we discuss secreted virulence factors of Salmonella, which directly affect Salmonella interaction with its host. Salmonella secretes protein to subvert host defenses but also, as discussed, to reduce virulence thereby permitting the bacteria to persist longer and more successfully disperse. The type III secretion system (TTSS) is the best known and well studied of the mechanisms that enable secretion from the bacterial cytoplasm to the host cell cytoplasm. Other secretion systems include outer membrane vesicles, which are present in all Gram-negative bacteria examined to date, two-partner secretion, and type VI secretion will also be addressed. Excellent reviews of Salmonella secreted effectors have focused on themes such as actin rearrangements, vesicular trafficking, ubiquitination, and the activities of the virulence factors themselves. This short review is based on S. Typhimurium infection of mice because it is a model of typhoid like disease in humans. We have organized effectors in terms of events that happen during the infection cycle and how secreted effectors may be involved.

  2. Cloning, expression, and purification of recombinant protein MPT-64 from a virulent strain of Mycobacterium bovis in a prokaryotic system

    OpenAIRE

    Maryam Mohammadi Tashakkori; Majid Tebianian; Mohammad Tabatabaei; Nader Mosavari

    2016-01-01

    Objective: Tuberculosis (TB) is a zoonotic infectious disease common to humans and animals that is caused by the rod-shaped acid-fast bacterium Mycobacterium bovis. Rapid and sensitive detection of TB is promoted by specific antigens. Virulent strains of the TB complex from M. bovis contain 16 regions of difference (RD) in their genome that encode important proteins, including major protein of Mycobacterium tuberculosis 64 (MBT-64, which is a primary immune-stimulating antigen encoded by RD-2...

  3. Chemical Space of DNA-Encoded Libraries.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Franzini, Raphael M; Randolph, Cassie

    2016-07-28

    In recent years, DNA-encoded chemical libraries (DECLs) have attracted considerable attention as a potential discovery tool in drug development. Screening encoded libraries may offer advantages over conventional hit discovery approaches and has the potential to complement such methods in pharmaceutical research. As a result of the increased application of encoded libraries in drug discovery, a growing number of hit compounds are emerging in scientific literature. In this review we evaluate reported encoded library-derived structures and identify general trends of these compounds in relation to library design parameters. We in particular emphasize the combinatorial nature of these libraries. Generally, the reported molecules demonstrate the ability of this technology to afford hits suitable for further lead development, and on the basis of them, we derive guidelines for DECL design.

  4. Helicobacter pylori virulence and cancer pathogenesis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yamaoka, Yoshio; Graham, David Y

    2014-06-01

    Helicobacter pylori is human gastric pathogen that causes chronic and progressive gastric mucosal inflammation and is responsible for the gastric inflammation-associated diseases, gastric cancer and peptic ulcer disease. Specific outcomes reflect the interplay between host-, environmental- and bacterial-specific factors. Progress in understanding putative virulence factors in disease pathogenesis has been limited and many false leads have consumed scarce resources. Few in vitro-in vivo correlations or translational applications have proved clinically relevant. Reported virulence factor-related outcomes reflect differences in relative risk of disease rather than specificity for any specific outcome. Studies of individual virulence factor associations have provided conflicting results. Since virulence factors are linked, studies of groups of putative virulence factors are needed to provide clinically useful information. Here, the authors discuss the progress made in understanding the role of H. pylori virulence factors CagA, vacuolating cytotoxin, OipA and DupA in disease pathogenesis and provide suggestions for future studies.

  5. ERP Correlates of Encoding Success and Encoding Selectivity in Attention Switching

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yeung, Nick

    2016-01-01

    Long-term memory encoding depends critically on effective processing of incoming information. The degree to which participants engage in effective encoding can be indexed in electroencephalographic (EEG) data by studying event-related potential (ERP) subsequent memory effects. The current study investigated ERP correlates of memory success operationalised with two different measures—memory selectivity and global memory—to assess whether previously observed ERP subsequent memory effects reflect focused encoding of task-relevant information (memory selectivity), general encoding success (global memory), or both. Building on previous work, the present study combined an attention switching paradigm—in which participants were presented with compound object-word stimuli and switched between attending to the object or the word across trials—with a later recognition memory test for those stimuli, while recording their EEG. Our results provided clear evidence that subsequent memory effects resulted from selective attentional focusing and effective top-down control (memory selectivity) in contrast to more general encoding success effects (global memory). Further analyses addressed the question of whether successful encoding depended on similar control mechanisms to those involved in attention switching. Interestingly, differences in the ERP correlates of attention switching and successful encoding, particularly during the poststimulus period, indicated that variability in encoding success occurred independently of prestimulus demands for top-down cognitive control. These results suggest that while effects of selective attention and selective encoding co-occur behaviourally their ERP correlates are at least partly dissociable. PMID:27907075

  6. Structure of the virulence-associated protein VapD from the intracellular pathogen Rhodococcus equi

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Whittingham, Jean L.; Blagova, Elena V.; Finn, Ciaran E.; Luo, Haixia; Miranda-CasoLuengo, Raúl; Turkenburg, Johan P.; Leech, Andrew P.; Walton, Paul H.; Murzin, Alexey G.; Meijer, Wim G.; Wilkinson, Anthony J.

    2014-01-01

    VapD is one of a set of highly homologous virulence-associated proteins from the multi-host pathogen Rhodococcus equi. The crystal structure reveals an eight-stranded β-barrel with a novel fold and a glycine rich ‘bald’ surface. Rhodococcus equi is a multi-host pathogen that infects a range of animals as well as immune-compromised humans. Equine and porcine isolates harbour a virulence plasmid encoding a homologous family of virulence-associated proteins associated with the capacity of R. equi to divert the normal processes of endosomal maturation, enabling bacterial survival and proliferation in alveolar macrophages. To provide a basis for probing the function of the Vap proteins in virulence, the crystal structure of VapD was determined. VapD is a monomer as determined by multi-angle laser light scattering. The structure reveals an elliptical, compact eight-stranded β-barrel with a novel strand topology and pseudo-twofold symmetry, suggesting evolution from an ancestral dimer. Surface-associated octyl-β-d-glucoside molecules may provide clues to function. Circular-dichroism spectroscopic analysis suggests that the β-barrel structure is preceded by a natively disordered region at the N-terminus. Sequence comparisons indicate that the core folds of the other plasmid-encoded virulence-associated proteins from R. equi strains are similar to that of VapD. It is further shown that sequences encoding putative R. equi Vap-like proteins occur in diverse bacterial species. Finally, the functional implications of the structure are discussed in the light of the unique structural features of VapD and its partial structural similarity to other β-barrel proteins

  7. Structure of the virulence-associated protein VapD from the intracellular pathogen Rhodococcus equi

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Whittingham, Jean L.; Blagova, Elena V. [University of York, Heslington, York YO10 5DD (United Kingdom); Finn, Ciaran E.; Luo, Haixia; Miranda-CasoLuengo, Raúl [University College Dublin, Dublin (Ireland); Turkenburg, Johan P.; Leech, Andrew P.; Walton, Paul H. [University of York, Heslington, York YO10 5DD (United Kingdom); Murzin, Alexey G. [MRC Laboratory of Molecular Biology, Francis Crick Avenue, Cambridge Biomedical Campus, Cambridge CB2 0QH (United Kingdom); Meijer, Wim G. [University College Dublin, Dublin (Ireland); Wilkinson, Anthony J., E-mail: tony.wilkinson@york.ac.uk [University of York, Heslington, York YO10 5DD (United Kingdom)

    2014-08-01

    VapD is one of a set of highly homologous virulence-associated proteins from the multi-host pathogen Rhodococcus equi. The crystal structure reveals an eight-stranded β-barrel with a novel fold and a glycine rich ‘bald’ surface. Rhodococcus equi is a multi-host pathogen that infects a range of animals as well as immune-compromised humans. Equine and porcine isolates harbour a virulence plasmid encoding a homologous family of virulence-associated proteins associated with the capacity of R. equi to divert the normal processes of endosomal maturation, enabling bacterial survival and proliferation in alveolar macrophages. To provide a basis for probing the function of the Vap proteins in virulence, the crystal structure of VapD was determined. VapD is a monomer as determined by multi-angle laser light scattering. The structure reveals an elliptical, compact eight-stranded β-barrel with a novel strand topology and pseudo-twofold symmetry, suggesting evolution from an ancestral dimer. Surface-associated octyl-β-d-glucoside molecules may provide clues to function. Circular-dichroism spectroscopic analysis suggests that the β-barrel structure is preceded by a natively disordered region at the N-terminus. Sequence comparisons indicate that the core folds of the other plasmid-encoded virulence-associated proteins from R. equi strains are similar to that of VapD. It is further shown that sequences encoding putative R. equi Vap-like proteins occur in diverse bacterial species. Finally, the functional implications of the structure are discussed in the light of the unique structural features of VapD and its partial structural similarity to other β-barrel proteins.

  8. A combination of independent transcriptional regulators shapes bacterial virulence gene expression during infection.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Samuel A Shelburne

    2010-03-01

    Full Text Available Transcriptional regulatory networks are fundamental to how microbes alter gene expression in response to environmental stimuli, thereby playing a critical role in bacterial pathogenesis. However, understanding how bacterial transcriptional regulatory networks function during host-pathogen interaction is limited. Recent studies in group A Streptococcus (GAS suggested that the transcriptional regulator catabolite control protein A (CcpA influences many of the same genes as the control of virulence (CovRS two-component gene regulatory system. To provide new information about the CcpA and CovRS networks, we compared the CcpA and CovR transcriptomes in a serotype M1 GAS strain. The transcript levels of several of the same genes encoding virulence factors and proteins involved in basic metabolic processes were affected in both DeltaccpA and DeltacovR isogenic mutant strains. Recombinant CcpA and CovR bound with high-affinity to the promoter regions of several co-regulated genes, including those encoding proteins involved in carbohydrate and amino acid metabolism. Compared to the wild-type parental strain, DeltaccpA and DeltacovRDeltaccpA isogenic mutant strains were significantly less virulent in a mouse myositis model. Inactivation of CcpA and CovR alone and in combination led to significant alterations in the transcript levels of several key GAS virulence factor encoding genes during infection. Importantly, the transcript level alterations in the DeltaccpA and DeltacovRDeltaccpA isogenic mutant strains observed during infection were distinct from those occurring during growth in laboratory medium. These data provide new knowledge regarding the molecular mechanisms by which pathogenic bacteria respond to environmental signals to regulate virulence factor production and basic metabolic processes during infection.

  9. A novel anti-virulence gene revealed by proteomic analysis in Shigella flexneri 2a

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ying Tianyi

    2010-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Shigella flexneri is a gram-negative, facultative pathogen that causes the majority of communicable bacterial dysenteries in developing countries. The virulence factors of S. flexneri have been shown to be produced at 37 degrees C but not at 30 degrees C. To discover potential, novel virulence-related proteins of S. flexneri, we performed differential in-gel electrophoresis (DIGE analysis to measure changes in the expression profile that are induced by a temperature increase. Results The ArgT protein was dramatically down-regulated at 37 degrees C. In contrast, the ArgT from the non-pathogenic E. coli did not show this differential expression as in S. flexneri, which suggested that argT might be a potential anti-virulence gene. Competitive invasion assays in HeLa cells and in BALB/c mice with argT mutants were performed, and the results indicated that the over-expression of ArgTY225D would attenuate the virulence of S. flexneri. A comparative proteomic analysis was subsequently performed to investigate the effects of ArgT in S. flexneri at the molecular level. We show that HtrA is differentially expressed among different derivative strains. Conclusion Gene argT is a novel anti-virulence gene that may interfere with the virulence of S. flexneri via the transport of specific amino acids or by affecting the expression of the virulence factor, HtrA.

  10. Metabolism of the vacuolar pathogen Legionella and implications for virulence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Manske, Christian; Hilbi, Hubert

    2014-01-01

    Legionella pneumophila is a ubiquitous environmental bacterium that thrives in fresh water habitats, either as planktonic form or as part of biofilms. The bacteria also grow intracellularly in free-living protozoa as well as in mammalian alveolar macrophages, thus triggering a potentially fatal pneumonia called "Legionnaires' disease." To establish its intracellular niche termed the "Legionella-containing vacuole" (LCV), L. pneumophila employs a type IV secretion system and translocates ~300 different "effector" proteins into host cells. The pathogen switches between two distinct forms to grow in its extra- or intracellular niches: transmissive bacteria are virulent for phagocytes, and replicative bacteria multiply within their hosts. The switch between these forms is regulated by different metabolic cues that signal conditions favorable for replication or transmission, respectively, causing a tight link between metabolism and virulence of the bacteria. Amino acids represent the prime carbon and energy source of extra- or intracellularly growing L. pneumophila. Yet, the genome sequences of several Legionella spp. as well as transcriptome and proteome data and metabolism studies indicate that the bacteria possess broad catabolic capacities and also utilize carbohydrates such as glucose. Accordingly, L. pneumophila mutant strains lacking catabolic genes show intracellular growth defects, and thus, intracellular metabolism and virulence of the pathogen are intimately connected. In this review we will summarize recent findings on the extra- and intracellular metabolism of L. pneumophila using genetic, biochemical and cellular microbial approaches. Recent progress in this field sheds light on the complex interplay between metabolism, differentiation and virulence of the pathogen.

  11. Contribution of lipoproteins and lipoprotein processing to endocarditis virulence in Streptococcus sanguinis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Das, Sankar; Kanamoto, Taisei; Ge, Xiuchun; Xu, Ping; Unoki, Takeshi; Munro, Cindy L; Kitten, Todd

    2009-07-01

    Streptococcus sanguinis is an important cause of infective endocarditis. Previous studies have identified lipoproteins as virulence determinants in other streptococcal species. Using a bioinformatic approach, we identified 52 putative lipoprotein genes in S. sanguinis strain SK36 as well as genes encoding the lipoprotein-processing enzymes prolipoprotein diacylglyceryl transferase (lgt) and signal peptidase II (lspA). We employed a directed signature-tagged mutagenesis approach to systematically disrupt these genes and screen each mutant for the loss of virulence in an animal model of endocarditis. All mutants were viable. In competitive index assays, mutation of a putative phosphate transporter reduced in vivo competitiveness by 14-fold but also reduced in vitro viability by more than 20-fold. Mutations in lgt, lspA, or an uncharacterized lipoprotein gene reduced competitiveness by two- to threefold in the animal model and in broth culture. Mutation of ssaB, encoding a putative metal transporter, produced a similar effect in culture but reduced in vivo competiveness by >1,000-fold. [(3)H]palmitate labeling and Western blot analysis confirmed that the lgt mutant failed to acylate lipoproteins, that the lspA mutant had a general defect in lipoprotein cleavage, and that SsaB was processed differently in both mutants. These results indicate that the loss of a single lipoprotein, SsaB, dramatically reduces endocarditis virulence, whereas the loss of most other lipoproteins or of normal lipoprotein processing has no more than a minor effect on virulence.

  12. Contribution of Lipoproteins and Lipoprotein Processing to Endocarditis Virulence in Streptococcus sanguinis▿ §

    Science.gov (United States)

    Das, Sankar; Kanamoto, Taisei; Ge, Xiuchun; Xu, Ping; Unoki, Takeshi; Munro, Cindy L.; Kitten, Todd

    2009-01-01

    Streptococcus sanguinis is an important cause of infective endocarditis. Previous studies have identified lipoproteins as virulence determinants in other streptococcal species. Using a bioinformatic approach, we identified 52 putative lipoprotein genes in S. sanguinis strain SK36 as well as genes encoding the lipoprotein-processing enzymes prolipoprotein diacylglyceryl transferase (lgt) and signal peptidase II (lspA). We employed a directed signature-tagged mutagenesis approach to systematically disrupt these genes and screen each mutant for the loss of virulence in an animal model of endocarditis. All mutants were viable. In competitive index assays, mutation of a putative phosphate transporter reduced in vivo competitiveness by 14-fold but also reduced in vitro viability by more than 20-fold. Mutations in lgt, lspA, or an uncharacterized lipoprotein gene reduced competitiveness by two- to threefold in the animal model and in broth culture. Mutation of ssaB, encoding a putative metal transporter, produced a similar effect in culture but reduced in vivo competiveness by >1,000-fold. [3H]palmitate labeling and Western blot analysis confirmed that the lgt mutant failed to acylate lipoproteins, that the lspA mutant had a general defect in lipoprotein cleavage, and that SsaB was processed differently in both mutants. These results indicate that the loss of a single lipoprotein, SsaB, dramatically reduces endocarditis virulence, whereas the loss of most other lipoproteins or of normal lipoprotein processing has no more than a minor effect on virulence. PMID:19395487

  13. Comparative transcriptome analysis of salivary glands of two populations of rice brown planthopper, Nilaparvata lugens, that differ in virulence.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rui Ji

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: The brown planthopper (BPH, Nilaparvata lugens (Stål, a destructive rice pest in Asia, can quickly overcome rice resistance by evolving new virulent populations. Herbivore saliva plays an important role in plant-herbivore interactions, including in plant defense and herbivore virulence. However, thus far little is known about BPH saliva at the molecular level, especially its role in virulence and BPH-rice interaction. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Using cDNA amplification in combination with Illumina short-read sequencing technology, we sequenced the salivary-gland transcriptomes of two BPH populations with different virulence; the populations were derived from rice variety TN1 (TN1 population and Mudgo (M population. In total, 37,666 and 38,451 unigenes were generated from the salivary glands of these populations, respectively. When combined, a total of 43,312 unigenes were obtained, about 18 times more than the number of expressed sequence tags previously identified from these glands. Gene ontology annotations and KEGG orthology classifications indicated that genes related to metabolism, binding and transport were significantly active in the salivary glands. A total of 352 genes were predicted to encode secretory proteins, and some might play important roles in BPH feeding and BPH-rice interactions. Comparative analysis of the transcriptomes of the two populations revealed that the genes related to 'metabolism,' 'digestion and absorption,' and 'salivary secretion' might be associated with virulence. Moreover, 67 genes encoding putative secreted proteins were differentially expressed between the two populations, suggesting these genes may contribute to the change in virulence. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: This study was the first to compare the salivary-gland transcriptomes of two BPH populations having different virulence traits and to find genes that may be related to this difference. Our data provide a rich molecular resource for

  14. Comparative transcriptome analysis of salivary glands of two populations of rice brown planthopper, Nilaparvata lugens, that differ in virulence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ji, Rui; Yu, Haixin; Fu, Qiang; Chen, Hongdan; Ye, Wenfeng; Li, Shaohui; Lou, Yonggen

    2013-01-01

    The brown planthopper (BPH), Nilaparvata lugens (Stål), a destructive rice pest in Asia, can quickly overcome rice resistance by evolving new virulent populations. Herbivore saliva plays an important role in plant-herbivore interactions, including in plant defense and herbivore virulence. However, thus far little is known about BPH saliva at the molecular level, especially its role in virulence and BPH-rice interaction. Using cDNA amplification in combination with Illumina short-read sequencing technology, we sequenced the salivary-gland transcriptomes of two BPH populations with different virulence; the populations were derived from rice variety TN1 (TN1 population) and Mudgo (M population). In total, 37,666 and 38,451 unigenes were generated from the salivary glands of these populations, respectively. When combined, a total of 43,312 unigenes were obtained, about 18 times more than the number of expressed sequence tags previously identified from these glands. Gene ontology annotations and KEGG orthology classifications indicated that genes related to metabolism, binding and transport were significantly active in the salivary glands. A total of 352 genes were predicted to encode secretory proteins, and some might play important roles in BPH feeding and BPH-rice interactions. Comparative analysis of the transcriptomes of the two populations revealed that the genes related to 'metabolism,' 'digestion and absorption,' and 'salivary secretion' might be associated with virulence. Moreover, 67 genes encoding putative secreted proteins were differentially expressed between the two populations, suggesting these genes may contribute to the change in virulence. This study was the first to compare the salivary-gland transcriptomes of two BPH populations having different virulence traits and to find genes that may be related to this difference. Our data provide a rich molecular resource for future functional studies on salivary glands and will be useful for elucidating the

  15. A small diffusible signal molecule is responsible for the global control of virulence and exoenzyme production in the plant pathogen Erwinia carotovora.

    OpenAIRE

    Pirhonen, M; Flego, D; Heikinheimo, R; Palva, E T

    1993-01-01

    Virulence of the plant pathogen Erwinia carotovora subsp. carotovora is dependent on the production and secretion of a complex arsenal of plant cell wall-degrading enzymes. Production of these exoenzymes is controlled by a global regulatory mechanism. A virulent mutants in one of the regulatory loci, expI, show a pleiotropic defect in the growth phase-dependent transcriptional activation of exoenzyme gene expression. The expI gene encodes a 26 kDa polypeptide that is structurally and function...

  16. The Streptococcus sanguinis Competence Regulon Is Not Required for Infective Endocarditis Virulence in a Rabbit Model

    OpenAIRE

    Callahan, Jill E.; Munro, Cindy L.; Kitten, Todd

    2011-01-01

    Streptococcus sanguinis is an important component of dental plaque and a leading cause of infective endocarditis. Genetic competence in S. sanguinis requires a quorum sensing system encoded by the early comCDE genes, as well as late genes controlled by the alternative sigma factor, ComX. Previous studies of Streptococcus pneumoniae and Streptococcus mutans have identified functions for the >100-gene com regulon in addition to DNA uptake, including virulence. We investigated this possibility i...

  17. Mycobacterium tuberculosis nuoG is a virulence gene that inhibits apoptosis of infected host cells.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kamalakannan Velmurugan

    2007-07-01

    Full Text Available The survival and persistence of Mycobacterium tuberculosis depends on its capacity to manipulate multiple host defense pathways, including the ability to actively inhibit the death by apoptosis of infected host cells. The genetic basis for this anti-apoptotic activity and its implication for mycobacterial virulence have not been demonstrated or elucidated. Using a novel gain-of-function genetic screen, we demonstrated that inhibition of infection-induced apoptosis of macrophages is controlled by multiple genetic loci in M. tuberculosis. Characterization of one of these loci in detail revealed that the anti-apoptosis activity was attributable to the type I NADH-dehydrogenase of M. tuberculosis, and was mainly due to the subunit of this multicomponent complex encoded by the nuoG gene. Expression of M. tuberculosis nuoG in nonpathogenic mycobacteria endowed them with the ability to inhibit apoptosis of infected human or mouse macrophages, and increased their virulence in a SCID mouse model. Conversely, deletion of nuoG in M. tuberculosis ablated its ability to inhibit macrophage apoptosis and significantly reduced its virulence in mice. These results identify a key component of the genetic basis for an important virulence trait of M. tuberculosis and support a direct causal relationship between virulence of pathogenic mycobacteria and their ability to inhibit macrophage apoptosis.

  18. The sensor kinase MprB is required for Rhodococcus equi virulence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    MacArthur, Iain; Parreira, Valeria R; Lepp, Dion; Mutharia, Lucy M; Vazquez-Boland, José A; Prescott, John F

    2011-01-10

    Rhodococcus equi is a soil bacterium and, like Mycobacterium tuberculosis, a member of the mycolata. Through possession of a virulence plasmid, it has the ability to infect the alveolar macrophages of foals, resulting in pyogranulomatous bronchopneumonia. The virulence plasmid has an orphan two-component system (TCS) regulatory gene, orf8, mutation of which completely attenuates virulence. This study attempted to find the cognate sensor kinase (SK) of orf8. Annotation of the R. equi strain 103 genome identified 23 TCSs encoded on the chromosome, which were used in a DNA microarray to compare TCS gene transcription in murine macrophage-like cells to growth in vitro. This identified six SKs as significantly up-regulated during growth in macrophages. Mutants of these SKs were constructed and their ability to persist in macrophages was determined with one SK, MprB, found to be required for intracellular survival. The attenuation of the mprB- mutant, and its complementation, was confirmed in a mouse virulence assay. In silico analysis of the R. equi genome sequence identified an MprA binding box motif homologous to that of M. tuberculosis, on mprA, pepD, sigB and sigE. The results of this study also show that R. equi responds to the macrophage environment differently from M. tuberculosis. MprB is the first SK identified as required for R. equi virulence and intracellular survival. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  19. The Streptococcus sanguinis competence regulon is not required for infective endocarditis virulence in a rabbit model.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jill E Callahan

    Full Text Available Streptococcus sanguinis is an important component of dental plaque and a leading cause of infective endocarditis. Genetic competence in S. sanguinis requires a quorum sensing system encoded by the early comCDE genes, as well as late genes controlled by the alternative sigma factor, ComX. Previous studies of Streptococcus pneumoniae and Streptococcus mutans have identified functions for the >100-gene com regulon in addition to DNA uptake, including virulence. We investigated this possibility in S. sanguinis. Strains deleted for the comCDE or comX master regulatory genes were created. Using a rabbit endocarditis model in conjunction with a variety of virulence assays, we determined that both mutants possessed infectivity equivalent to that of a virulent control strain, and that measures of disease were similar in rabbits infected with each strain. These results suggest that the com regulon is not required for S. sanguinis infective endocarditis virulence in this model. We propose that the different roles of the S. sanguinis, S. pneumoniae, and S. mutans com regulons in virulence can be understood in relation to the pathogenic mechanisms employed by each species.

  20. Identification of virulence determinants for endocarditis in Streptococcus sanguinis by signature-tagged mutagenesis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paik, Sehmi; Senty, Lauren; Das, Sankar; Noe, Jody C; Munro, Cindy L; Kitten, Todd

    2005-09-01

    Streptococcus sanguinis is a gram-positive, facultative anaerobe and a normal inhabitant of the human oral cavity. It is also one of the most common agents of infective endocarditis, a serious endovascular infection. To identify virulence factors for infective endocarditis, signature-tagged mutagenesis (STM) was applied to the SK36 strain of S. sanguinis, whose genome is being sequenced. STM allows the large-scale creation, in vivo screening, and recovery of a series of mutants with altered virulence. Screening of 800 mutants by STM identified 38 putative avirulent and 5 putative hypervirulent mutants. Subsequent molecular analysis of a subset of these mutants identified genes encoding undecaprenol kinase, homoserine kinase, anaerobic ribonucleotide reductase, adenylosuccinate lyase, and a hypothetical protein. Virulence reductions ranging from 2-to 150-fold were confirmed by competitive index assays. One putatively hypervirulent strain with a transposon insertion in an intergenic region was identified, though increased virulence was not confirmed in competitive index assays. All mutants grew comparably to SK36 in aerobic broth culture except for the homoserine kinase mutant. Growth of this mutant was restored by the addition of threonine to the medium. Mutants containing an insertion or in-frame deletion in the anaerobic ribonucleotide reductase gene failed to grow under strictly anaerobic conditions. The results suggest that housekeeping functions such as cell wall synthesis, amino acid and nucleic acid synthesis, and the ability to survive under anaerobic conditions are important virulence factors in S. sanguinis endocarditis.

  1. The Streptococcus sanguinis competence regulon is not required for infective endocarditis virulence in a rabbit model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Callahan, Jill E; Munro, Cindy L; Kitten, Todd

    2011-01-01

    Streptococcus sanguinis is an important component of dental plaque and a leading cause of infective endocarditis. Genetic competence in S. sanguinis requires a quorum sensing system encoded by the early comCDE genes, as well as late genes controlled by the alternative sigma factor, ComX. Previous studies of Streptococcus pneumoniae and Streptococcus mutans have identified functions for the >100-gene com regulon in addition to DNA uptake, including virulence. We investigated this possibility in S. sanguinis. Strains deleted for the comCDE or comX master regulatory genes were created. Using a rabbit endocarditis model in conjunction with a variety of virulence assays, we determined that both mutants possessed infectivity equivalent to that of a virulent control strain, and that measures of disease were similar in rabbits infected with each strain. These results suggest that the com regulon is not required for S. sanguinis infective endocarditis virulence in this model. We propose that the different roles of the S. sanguinis, S. pneumoniae, and S. mutans com regulons in virulence can be understood in relation to the pathogenic mechanisms employed by each species.

  2. Identification of Virulence Determinants for Endocarditis in Streptococcus sanguinis by Signature-Tagged Mutagenesis†

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paik, Sehmi; Senty, Lauren; Das, Sankar; Noe, Jody C.; Munro, Cindy L.; Kitten, Todd

    2005-01-01

    Streptococcus sanguinis is a gram-positive, facultative anaerobe and a normal inhabitant of the human oral cavity. It is also one of the most common agents of infective endocarditis, a serious endovascular infection. To identify virulence factors for infective endocarditis, signature-tagged mutagenesis (STM) was applied to the SK36 strain of S. sanguinis, whose genome is being sequenced. STM allows the large-scale creation, in vivo screening, and recovery of a series of mutants with altered virulence. Screening of 800 mutants by STM identified 38 putative avirulent and 5 putative hypervirulent mutants. Subsequent molecular analysis of a subset of these mutants identified genes encoding undecaprenol kinase, homoserine kinase, anaerobic ribonucleotide reductase, adenylosuccinate lyase, and a hypothetical protein. Virulence reductions ranging from 2-to 150-fold were confirmed by competitive index assays. One putatively hypervirulent strain with a transposon insertion in an intergenic region was identified, though increased virulence was not confirmed in competitive index assays. All mutants grew comparably to SK36 in aerobic broth culture except for the homoserine kinase mutant. Growth of this mutant was restored by the addition of threonine to the medium. Mutants containing an insertion or in-frame deletion in the anaerobic ribonucleotide reductase gene failed to grow under strictly anaerobic conditions. The results suggest that housekeeping functions such as cell wall synthesis, amino acid and nucleic acid synthesis, and the ability to survive under anaerobic conditions are important virulence factors in S. sanguinis endocarditis. PMID:16113327

  3. A gacS deletion in Pseudomonas aeruginosa cystic fibrosis isolate CHA shapes its virulence.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Khady Mayebine Sall

    Full Text Available Pseudomonas aeruginosa, a human opportunistic pathogen, is capable of provoking acute and chronic infections that are associated with defined sets of virulence factors. During chronic infections, the bacterium accumulates mutations that silence some and activate other genes. Here we show that the cystic fibrosis isolate CHA exhibits a unique virulence phenotype featuring a mucoid morphology, an active Type III Secretion System (T3SS, hallmark of acute infections, and no Type VI Secretion System (H1-T6SS. This virulence profile is due to a 426 bp deletion in the 3' end of the gacS gene encoding an essential regulatory protein. The absence of GacS disturbs the Gac/Rsm pathway leading to depletion of the small regulatory RNAs RsmY/RsmZ and, in consequence, to expression of T3SS, while switching off the expression of H1-T6SS and Pel polysaccharides. The CHA isolate also exhibits full ability to swim and twitch, due to active flagellum and Type IVa pili. Thus, unlike the classical scheme of balance between virulence factors, clinical strains may adapt to a local niche by expressing both alginate exopolysaccharide, a hallmark of membrane stress that protects from antibiotic action, host defences and phagocytosis, and efficient T3S machinery that is considered as an aggressive virulence factor.

  4. Antimicrobial medium- and long-chain free fatty acids prevent PrfA-dependent activation of virulence genes in Listeria monocytogenes

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Sternkopf Lillebæk, Eva Maria; Lambert Nielsen, Stine; Scheel Thomasen, Rikke

    2017-01-01

    of virulence factors required for bacterial entry, intracellular replication and cell-to-cell spread. PrfA-dependent activation of virulence genes occurs primarily in the blood and during intracellular infection. In contrast, PrfA does not play a significant role in regulation of virulence gene expression...... antimicrobial free fatty acids act to downregulate transcription of PrfA-activated virulence genes. Interestingly, the inhibitory effect is also evident in cells encoding a constitutively active variant of PrfA. Collectively, our data suggest that antimicrobial medium- and long-chain free fatty acids may act...... as signals to prevent PrfA-mediated activation of virulence genes in environments where PrfA activation is not required, such as in food and the gastrointestinal tract....

  5. How Do the Virulence Factors of Shigella Work Together to Cause Disease?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mattock, Emily; Blocker, Ariel J

    2017-01-01

    Shigella is the major cause of bacillary dysentery world-wide. It is divided into four species, named S. flexneri, S. sonnei, S. dysenteriae , and S. boydii , which are distinct genomically and in their ability to cause disease. Shigellosis, the clinical presentation of Shigella infection, is characterized by watery diarrhea, abdominal cramps, and fever. Shigella 's ability to cause disease has been attributed to virulence factors, which are encoded on chromosomal pathogenicity islands and the virulence plasmid. However, information on these virulence factors is not often brought together to create a detailed picture of infection, and how this translates into shigellosis symptoms. Firstly, Shigella secretes virulence factors that induce severe inflammation and mediate enterotoxic effects on the colon, producing the classic watery diarrhea seen early in infection. Secondly, Shigella injects virulence effectors into epithelial cells via its Type III Secretion System to subvert the host cell structure and function. This allows invasion of epithelial cells, establishing a replicative niche, and causes erratic destruction of the colonic epithelium. Thirdly, Shigella produces effectors to down-regulate inflammation and the innate immune response. This promotes infection and limits the adaptive immune response, causing the host to remain partially susceptible to re-infection. Combinations of these virulence factors may contribute to the different symptoms and infection capabilities of the diverse Shigella species, in addition to distinct transmission patterns. Further investigation of the dominant species causing disease, using whole-genome sequencing and genotyping, will allow comparison and identification of crucial virulence factors and may contribute to the production of a pan- Shigella vaccine.

  6. Identification of serotypes and virulence markers of Escherichia coli isolated from human stool and urine samples in Egypt

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    K M Osman

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Purpose: Haemorrhagic colitis and haemolytic-uremic syndrome are associated with Shiga-toxin producing Escherichia coli (STEC. There are others DEC (Diarrhoeagenic E. coli pathotypes responsible for outbreaks and others toxins associated to these. Most clinical signs of disease arise as a consequence of the production of Shiga toxin 1 (Stx1, Stx2 or combinations of these toxins. Other major virulence factors include E. coli haemolysin (hlyA, and intimin, the product of the eaeA gene that is involved in the attaching and effacing adherence phenotype. Materials and Methods: In this study, the PCR assay was used to detect 12 E. coli genes associated with virulence (stx1, stx2, hylA, Flic h7 , stb, F41, K99, sta, F17, LT-I, LT-II and eaeA. Results: A total of 108 E. coli strains were serotyped into 64 typable strains. The investigated strains from the stool, 8/80 (10% strains were O 164:K, while the 56/110 strains isolated from the urine were O126:K71 (44/110, 40% and O 86:K 61 (12/110, 11%. The distribution pattern of the detected virulence genes was observed to be in the following order: F17 (10% from the stool and 44% from the urine, Sta (10% from the stool, hylA (10% from the stool and 44% from the urine, Stb (44% from the urine and stx1 (27% from the urine. The 8 faecal strains encoded a combination of the F17, Sta and hylA genes, while the 56 urine strains encoded a combination of the F17 0+ Stb + hylA (44/110, 40% and Stx1 only (12/60, 20%. Conclusion: This is the first report on the molecular characterization of E. coli diarrhoeagenic strains in Egypt and the first report on the potential role of E. coli in diarrhoea and urinary tract infections in a localized geographic area where the people engage in various occupational activities.

  7. Analysis of a food-borne fungal pathogen outbreak: virulence and genome of a Mucor circinelloides isolate from yogurt.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Soo Chan; Billmyre, R Blake; Li, Alicia; Carson, Sandra; Sykes, Sean M; Huh, Eun Young; Mieczkowski, Piotr; Ko, Dennis C; Cuomo, Christina A; Heitman, Joseph

    2014-07-08

    Food-borne pathogens are ongoing problems, and new pathogens are emerging. The impact of fungi, however, is largely underestimated. Recently, commercial yogurts contaminated with Mucor circinelloides were sold, and >200 consumers became ill with nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea. Mucoralean fungi cause the fatal fungal infection mucormycosis, whose incidence has been continuously increasing. In this study, we isolated an M. circinelloides strain from a yogurt container, and multilocus sequence typing identified the strain as Mucor circinelloides f. circinelloides. M. circinelloides f. circinelloides is the most virulent M. circinelloides subspecies and is commonly associated with human infections, whereas M. circinelloides f. lusitanicus and M. circinelloides f. griseocyanus are less common causes of infection. Whole-genome analysis of the yogurt isolate confirmed it as being close to the M. circinelloides f. circinelloides subgroup, with a higher percentage of divergence with the M. circinelloides f. lusitanicus subgroup. In mating assays, the yogurt isolate formed sexual zygospores with the (-) M. circinelloides f. circinelloides tester strain, which is congruent with its sex locus encoding SexP, the (+) mating type sex determinant. The yogurt isolate was virulent in murine and wax moth larva host systems. In a murine gastromucormycosis model, Mucor was recovered from fecal samples of infected mice for up to 10 days, indicating that Mucor can survive transit through the GI tract. In interactions with human immune cells, M. circinelloides f. lusitanicus induced proinflammatory cytokines but M. circinelloides f. circinelloides did not, which may explain the different levels of virulence in mammalian hosts. This study demonstrates that M. circinelloides can spoil food products and cause gastrointestinal illness in consumers and may pose a particular risk to immunocompromised patients. Importance: The U.S. FDA reported that yogurt products were contaminated with M

  8. Genes involved in virulence of the entomopathogenic fungus Beauveria bassiana.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Valero-Jiménez, Claudio A; Wiegers, Harm; Zwaan, Bas J; Koenraadt, Constantianus J M; van Kan, Jan A L

    2016-01-01

    Pest insects cause severe damage to global crop production and pose a threat to human health by transmitting diseases. Traditionally, chemical pesticides (insecticides) have been used to control such pests and have proven to be effective only for a limited amount of time because of the rapid spread of genetic insecticide resistance. The basis of this resistance is mostly caused by (co)dominant mutations in single genes, which explains why insecticide use alone is an unsustainable solution. Therefore, robust solutions for insect pest control need to be sought in alternative methods such as biological control agents for which single-gene resistance is less likely to evolve. The entomopathogenic fungus Beauveria bassiana has shown potential as a biological control agent of insects, and insight into the mechanisms of virulence is essential to show the robustness of its use. With the recent availability of the whole genome sequence of B. bassiana, progress in understanding the genetics that constitute virulence toward insects can be made more quickly. In this review we divide the infection process into distinct steps and provide an overview of what is currently known about genes and mechanisms influencing virulence in B. bassiana. We also discuss the need for novel strategies and experimental methods to better understand the infection mechanisms deployed by entomopathogenic fungi. Such knowledge can help improve biocontrol agents, not only by selecting the most virulent genotypes, but also by selecting the genotypes that use combinations of virulence mechanisms for which resistance in the insect host is least likely to develop. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  9. A putative regulatory genetic locus modulates virulence in the pathogen Leptospira interrogans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eshghi, Azad; Becam, Jérôme; Lambert, Ambroise; Sismeiro, Odile; Dillies, Marie-Agnès; Jagla, Bernd; Wunder, Elsio A; Ko, Albert I; Coppee, Jean-Yves; Goarant, Cyrille; Picardeau, Mathieu

    2014-06-01

    Limited research has been conducted on the role of transcriptional regulators in relation to virulence in Leptospira interrogans, the etiological agent of leptospirosis. Here, we identify an L. interrogans locus that encodes a sensor protein, an anti-sigma factor antagonist, and two genes encoding proteins of unknown function. Transposon insertion into the gene encoding the sensor protein led to dampened transcription of the other 3 genes in this locus. This lb139 insertion mutant (the lb139(-) mutant) displayed attenuated virulence in the hamster model of infection and reduced motility in vitro. Whole-transcriptome analyses using RNA sequencing revealed the downregulation of 115 genes and the upregulation of 28 genes, with an overrepresentation of gene products functioning in motility and signal transduction and numerous gene products with unknown functions, predicted to be localized to the extracellular space. Another significant finding encompassed suppressed expression of the majority of the genes previously demonstrated to be upregulated at physiological osmolarity, including the sphingomyelinase C precursor Sph2 and LigB. We provide insight into a possible requirement for transcriptional regulation as it relates to leptospiral virulence and suggest various biological processes that are affected due to the loss of native expression of this genetic locus.

  10. Anaerobiosis induced virulence of Salmonella typhi

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kapoor, Sarika; Singh, R D; Sharma, P C

    2002-01-01

    , we examined the effect of anaerobiosis on the virulence of Salmonella Typhi, a Gram negative bacteria which invades through the gut mucosa and is responsible for typhoid fever. METHODS: Salmonella Typhi (ty2) was cultured in aerobic and anaerobic conditions to compare its virulence by rabbit ileal...

  11. Evolution of viral virulence: empirical studies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kurath, Gael; Wargo, Andrew R.

    2016-01-01

    The concept of virulence as a pathogen trait that can evolve in response to selection has led to a large body of virulence evolution theory developed in the 1980-1990s. Various aspects of this theory predict increased or decreased virulence in response to a complex array of selection pressures including mode of transmission, changes in host, mixed infection, vector-borne transmission, environmental changes, host vaccination, host resistance, and co-evolution of virus and host. A fundamental concept is prediction of trade-offs between the costs and benefits associated with higher virulence, leading to selection of optimal virulence levels. Through a combination of observational and experimental studies, including experimental evolution of viruses during serial passage, many of these predictions have now been explored in systems ranging from bacteriophage to viruses of plants, invertebrates, and vertebrate hosts. This chapter summarizes empirical studies of viral virulence evolution in numerous diverse systems, including the classic models myxomavirus in rabbits, Marek's disease virus in chickens, and HIV in humans. Collectively these studies support some aspects of virulence evolution theory, suggest modifications for other aspects, and show that predictions may apply in some virus:host interactions but not in others. Finally, we consider how virulence evolution theory applies to disease management in the field.

  12. Virulence, serotype and phylogenetic groups of diarrhoeagenic ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Dr DADIE Thomas

    2014-02-17

    Feb 17, 2014 ... The virulence, serotype and phylogenetic traits of diarrhoeagenic Escherichia coli were detected in 502 strains isolated during digestive infections. Molecular detection of the target virulence genes, rfb gene of operon O and phylogenetic grouping genes Chua, yjaA and TSPE4.C2 was performed.

  13. Inhibitors of Mycobacterium marinum virulence identified in a Dictyostelium discoideum host model.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hajer Ouertatani-Sakouhi

    Full Text Available Tuberculosis remains one of the major threats to public health worldwide. Given the prevalence of multi drug resistance (MDR in Mycobacterium tuberculosis strains, there is a strong need to develop new anti-mycobacterial drugs with modes of action distinct from classical antibiotics. Inhibitors of mycobacterial virulence might target new molecular processes and may represent a potential new therapeutic alternative. In this study, we used a Dictyostelium discoideum host model to assess virulence of Mycobacterium marinum and to identify compounds inhibiting mycobacterial virulence. Among 9995 chemical compounds, we selected 12 inhibitors of mycobacterial virulence that do not inhibit mycobacterial growth in synthetic medium. Further analyses revealed that 8 of them perturbed functions requiring an intact mycobacterial cell wall such as sliding motility, bacterial aggregation or cell wall permeability. Chemical analogs of two compounds were analyzed. Chemical modifications altered concomitantly their effect on sliding motility and on mycobacterial virulence, suggesting that the alteration of the mycobacterial cell wall caused the loss of virulence. We characterized further one of the selected compounds and found that it inhibited the ability of mycobacteria to replicate in infected cells. Together these results identify new antimycobacterial compounds that represent new tools to unravel the molecular mechanisms controlling mycobacterial pathogenicity. The isolation of compounds with anti-virulence activity is the first step towards developing new antibacterial treatments.

  14. Identification of a major IP5 kinase in Cryptococcus neoformans confirms that PP-IP5/IP7, not IP6, is essential for virulence

    OpenAIRE

    Li, Cecilia; Lev, Sophie; Saiardi, Adolfo; Desmarini, Desmarini; Sorrell, Tania C.; Djordjevic, Julianne T.

    2016-01-01

    Fungal inositol polyphosphate (IP) kinases catalyse phosphorylation of IP3 to inositol pyrophosphate, PP-IP5/IP7, which is essential for virulence of Cryptococcus neoformans. Cryptococcal Kcs1 converts IP6 to PP-IP5/IP7, but the kinase converting IP5 to IP6 is unknown. Deletion of a putative IP5 kinase-encoding gene (IPK1) alone (ipk1?), and in combination with KCS1 (ipk1?kcs1?), profoundly reduced virulence in mice. However, deletion of KCS1 and IPK1 had a greater impact on virulence attenua...

  15. Production Of Some Virulence Factors Under Different Growth ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Production Of Some Virulence Factors Under Different Growth Conditions And Antibiotic Susceptibility Pattern Of ... Animal Research International ... Keywords: Virulence, Haemolytic activity, Susceptibility, Antibiotics, Aeromonas hydrophila

  16. Citrus psorosis virus RNA 1 is of negative polarity and potentially encodes in its complementary strand a 24K protein of unknown function and 280K putative RNA dependent RNA polymerase.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Naum-Onganía, Gabriela; Gago-Zachert, Selma; Peña, Eduardo; Grau, Oscar; Garcia, Maria Laura

    2003-10-01

    Citrus psorosis virus (CPsV), the type member of genus Ophiovirus, has three genomic RNAs. Complete sequencing of CPsV RNA 1 revealed a size of 8184 nucleotides and Northern blot hybridization with chain specific probes showed that its non-coding strand is preferentially encapsidated. The complementary strand of RNA 1 contains two open reading frames (ORFs) separated by a 109-nt intergenic region, one located near the 5'-end potentially encoding a 24K protein of unknown function, and another of 280K containing the core polymerase motifs characteristic of viral RNA-dependent RNA polymerases (RdRp). Comparison of the core RdRp motifs of negative-stranded RNA viruses, supports grouping CPsV, Ranunculus white mottle virus (RWMV) and Mirafiori lettuce virus (MiLV) within the same genus (Ophiovirus), constituting a monophyletic group separated from all other negative-stranded RNA viruses. Furthermore, RNAs 1 of MiLV, CPsV and RWMV are similar in size and those of MiLV and CPsV also in genomic organization and sequence.

  17. a permutation encoding te algorithm solution of reso tation encoding

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    eobe

    Keywords: Genetic algorithm, resource constrained. 1. INTRODUCTION. 1. .... Nigerian Journal of Technology. Vol. 34, No. 1, January 2015. 128 ... 4. ENCODING OF CHROMOSOME. ENCODING OF CHROMOSOME .... International Multi conference of Engineers and ... method”, Naval Research Logistics, vol 48, issue 2,.

  18. Antimicrobial activity and the presence of virulence factors and bacteriocin structural genes in Enterococcus faecium CM33 isolated from ewe colostrum

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    YOUSEF eNAMI

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available AbstractScreening of lactic acid bacteria isolated from ewe colostrum led to the identification and isolation of Enterococcus faecium CM33 with interesting features, such as high-survival rates under acidic or bile salt conditions, high tolerance to the simulated gastrointestinal condition, and high adhesive potential to Caco-2 cells. According to the inhibition of pathogen adhesion test results, this strain could reduce more than 50% adhesion capacity of Escherichia coli, Shigella flexneri, Klebsiella pneumoniae, Listeria monocytogenes, and Staphylococcus aureus to Caco-2 cells. Based on the antibiotic sensitivity test findings, E. faecium CM33 was susceptible to gentamycin, vancomycin, erythromycin, ampicillin, penicillin, tetracycline, and rifampicin, but resistant to chloramphenicol, clindamycin, and kanamycin. Upon the assessment of the virulence determinants for E. faecium CM33, this strain was negative for all tested virulence genes. Furthermore, the genome of this strain was evaluated for the incidence of the known enterocin genes by specific PCR amplification, and the genes encoding enterocins A, 31, X, and Q were discovered. The findings of this study showed that the strain E. faecium CM33 could be considered a valuable nutraceutical, and it can be introduced as a new potential probiotic.

  19. A theoretical model of the evolution of virulence in sexually transmitted HIV/AIDS Modelo teórico da evolucão da virulência do HIV/AIDS transmitido sexualmente

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    FAB Coutinho

    1999-08-01

    Full Text Available INTRODUCTION: The evolution of virulence in host-parasite relationships has been the subject of several publications. In the case of HIV virulence, some authors suggest that the evolution of HIV virulence correlates with the rate of acquisition of new sexual partners. In contrast some other authors argue that the level of HIV virulence is independent of the sexual activity of the host population. METHODS: Provide a mathematical model for the study of the potential influence of human sexual behaviour on the evolution of virulence of HIV is provided. RESULTS: The results indicated that, when the probability of acquisition of infection is a function both of the sexual activity and of the virulence level of HIV strains, the evolution of HIV virulence correlates positively with the rate of acquisition of new sexual partners. CONCLUSION: It is concluded that in the case of a host population with a low (high rate of exchange of sexual partners the evolution of HIV virulence is such that the less (more virulent strain prevails.INTRODUÇÃO: A evolução da virulência na relação hospedeiro-parasita tem sido objeto de várias publicações. No caso do HIV, alguns autores sugerem que a evolução da virulência do HIV correlaciona-se com a taxa de aquisição de novos parceiros sexuais. Por outro lado, outros autores argumentam que o nível de virulência do HIV é independente da atividade sexual da população hospedeira. MÉTODOS: Propõe-se um modelo matemático para estudar a influência potencial que o comportamento sexual humano possa ter na evolução da virulência do HIV. RESULTADOS: Os resultados indicam que, quando a probabilidade de aquisição da infecção pelo HIV é uma função tanto da atividade sexual da população humana quanto da virulência das cepas de HIV, a evolução da virulência do HIV correlaciona-se positivamente com a taxa de aquisição de novos parceiros sexuais. CONCLUSÃO: Concluiu-se que no caso de uma popula

  20. Steps toward broad-spectrum therapeutics: discovering virulence-associated genes present in diverse human pathogens

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    de Rochefort Anna

    2009-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background New and improved antimicrobial countermeasures are urgently needed to counteract increased resistance to existing antimicrobial treatments and to combat currently untreatable or new emerging infectious diseases. We demonstrate that computational comparative genomics, together with experimental screening, can identify potential generic (i.e., conserved across multiple pathogen species and novel virulence-associated genes that may serve as targets for broad-spectrum countermeasures. Results Using phylogenetic profiles of protein clusters from completed microbial genome sequences, we identified seventeen protein candidates that are common to diverse human pathogens and absent or uncommon in non-pathogens. Mutants of 13 of these candidates were successfully generated in Yersinia pseudotuberculosis and the potential role of the proteins in virulence was assayed in an animal model. Six candidate proteins are suggested to be involved in the virulence of Y. pseudotuberculosis, none of which have previously been implicated in the virulence of Y. pseudotuberculosis and three have no record of involvement in the virulence of any bacteria. Conclusion This work demonstrates a strategy for the identification of potential virulence factors that are conserved across a number of human pathogenic bacterial species, confirming the usefulness of this tool.

  1. Identification of an essential virulence gene of cyprinid herpesvirus 3.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boutier, Maxime; Gao, Yuan; Vancsok, Catherine; Suárez, Nicolás M; Davison, Andrew J; Vanderplasschen, Alain

    2017-09-01

    The genus Cyprinivirus consists of a growing list of phylogenetically related viruses, some of which cause severe economic losses to the aquaculture industry. The archetypal member, cyprinid herpesvirus 3 (CyHV-3) causes mass mortalities worldwide in koi and common carp. A CyHV-3 mutant was described previously that is attenuated in vivo by a deletion affecting two genes (ORF56 and ORF57). The relative contributions of ORF56 and ORF57 to the safety and efficacy profile of this vaccine candidate have now been assessed by analysing viruses individually deleted for ORF56 or ORF57. Inoculation of these viruses into carp demonstrated that the absence of ORF56 did not affect virulence, whereas the absence of ORF57 led to an attenuation comparable to, though slightly less than, that of the doubly deleted virus. To demonstrate further the role of ORF57 as a key virulence factor, a mutant retaining the ORF57 region but unable to express the ORF57 protein was produced by inserting multiple in-frame stop codons into the coding region. Analysis of this virus in vivo revealed a safety and efficacy profile comparable to that of the doubly deleted virus. These findings show that ORF57 encodes an essential CyHV-3 virulence factor. They also indicate that ORF57 orthologues in other cypriniviruses may offer promising targets for the rational design of attenuated recombinant vaccines. Copyright © 2017 The Authors. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  2. Two cation transporters Ena1 and Nha1 cooperatively modulate ion homeostasis, antifungal drug resistance, and virulence of Cryptococcus neoformans via the HOG pathway

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jung, Kwang-Woo; Strain, Anna K; Nielsen, Kirsten; Jung, Kwang-Hwan; Bahn, Yong-Sun

    2012-01-01

    Maintenance of cation homeostasis is essential for survival of all living organisms in their biological niches. It is also important for the survival of human pathogenic fungi in the host, where cation concentrations and pH will vary depending on different anatomical sites. However, the exact role of diverse cation transporters and ion channels in virulence of fungal pathogens remains elusive. In this study we functionally characterized ENA1 and NHA1, encoding a putative Na+/ATPase and Na+/H+ antiporter, respectively, in Cryptococcus neoformans, a basidiomycete fungal pathogen which causes fatal meningoencephalitis. Expression of NHA1 and ENA1 is induced in response to salt and osmotic shock mainly in a Hog1-dependent manner. Phenotypic analysis of the ena1, nha1, and ena1 nha1 mutants revealed that Ena1 controls cellular levels of toxic cations, such as Na+ and Li+ whereas both Ena1 and Nha1 are important for controlling less toxic K+ ions. Under alkaline conditions, Ena1 was highly induced and required for growth in the presence of low levels of Na+ or K+ salt and Nha1 played a role in survival under K+ stress. In contrast, Nha1, but not Ena1, was essential for survival at acidic conditions (pH 4.5) under high K+ stress. In addition, Ena1 and Nha1 were required for maintenance of plasma membrane potential and stability, which appeared to modulate antifungal drug susceptibility. Perturbation of ENA1 and NHA1 enhanced capsule production and melanin synthesis. However, Nha1 was dispensable for virulence of C. neoformans although Ena1 was essential. In conclusion, Ena1 and Nha1 play redundant and discrete roles in cation homeostasis, pH regulation, membrane potential, and virulence in C. neoformans, suggesting that these transporters could be novel antifungal drug targets for treatment of cryptococcosis. PMID:22343280

  3. Critical role of the virus-encoded microRNA-155 ortholog in the induction of Marek's disease lymphomas.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yuguang Zhao

    2011-02-01

    Full Text Available Notwithstanding the well-characterised roles of a number of oncogenes in neoplastic transformation, microRNAs (miRNAs are increasingly implicated in several human cancers. Discovery of miRNAs in several oncogenic herpesviruses such as KSHV has further highlighted the potential of virus-encoded miRNAs to contribute to their oncogenic capabilities. Nevertheless, despite the identification of several possible cancer-related genes as their targets, the direct in vivo role of virus-encoded miRNAs in neoplastic diseases such as those induced by KSHV is difficult to demonstrate in the absence of suitable models. However, excellent natural disease models of rapid-onset Marek's disease (MD lymphomas in chickens allow examination of the oncogenic potential of virus-encoded miRNAs. Using viruses modified by reverse genetics of the infectious BAC clone of the oncogenic RB-1B strain of MDV, we show that the deletion of the six-miRNA cluster 1 from the viral genome abolished the oncogenicity of the virus. This loss of oncogenicity appeared to be primarily due to the single miRNA within the cluster, miR-M4, the ortholog of cellular miR-155, since its deletion or a 2-nucleotide mutation within its seed region was sufficient to inhibit the induction of lymphomas. The definitive role of this miR-155 ortholog in oncogenicity was further confirmed by the rescue of oncogenic phenotype by revertant viruses that expressed either the miR-M4 or the cellular homolog gga-miR-155. This is the first demonstration of the direct in vivo role of a virus-encoded miRNA in inducing tumors in a natural infection model. Furthermore, the use of viruses deleted in miRNAs as effective vaccines against virulent MDV challenge, enables the prospects of generating genetically defined attenuated vaccines.

  4. Parallel encoders for pixel detectors

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Nikityuk, N.M.

    1991-01-01

    A new method of fast encoding and determining the multiplicity and coordinates of fired pixels is described. A specific example construction of parallel encodes and MCC for n=49 and t=2 is given. 16 refs.; 6 figs.; 2 tabs

  5. Genetic diversity and virulence genes in Streptococcus uberis strains isolated from bovine mastitis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rafael Ambrósio Loures

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available Mastitis is one of the most common and costly infectious diseases in dairy cattle worldwide. This is a multifactorial illness caused by different microorganisms, including virus, yeasts, algae, parasites, and several species of bacteria. Among these bacteria, Streptococcus uberis is an important environmental pathogen that is responsible for a large range of clinical and subclinical mammary infections, especially in intensively managed herds. Despite the increasing importance of this pathogen in the etiology of bovine mastitis, data on its virulence and diversity in Brazilian dairy herds are scarce. The aims of the present study were to investigate the virulence characteristics of S. uberis isolated from bovine mastitis and to assess the molecular epidemiology of the Brazilian isolates using pulsed-field gel electrophoresis (PFGE. In this work, 46 strains of S. uberis isolated from bovine mastitis from 26 Brazilian dairy herds were evaluated regarding their genetic diversity by PFGE using with the SmaI enzyme. Additionally, the presence of the virulence genes skc and pauA, which encode plasminogen activators, and the gene sua, which encodes an adhesion molecule in mammary epithelial cells, were assessed by PCR. Our results showed a high genetic diversity in the population, displaying many different patterns in the PFGE analysis. A high proportion of strains was positive for virulence genes in the sampled population (sua [100%], pauA [91%], and skc [91%]. The high frequency of skc, pauA, and sua genes among the studied strains suggests the importance of these virulence factors, possibly helping S. uberis in the colonization of the bovine mammary gland. Surveys of the genetic and molecular characteristics of this pathogen can improve our knowledge of bacterial activity and identify molecules that have roles in the establishment of the infection. This might help in the development of more effective measures to control and prevent bovine mastitis.

  6. Three Herpes Simplex Virus Type 1 Latency-Associated Transcript Mutants with Distinct and Asymmetric Effects on Virulence in Mice Compared with Rabbits

    Science.gov (United States)

    Perng, Guey-Chuen; Esmaili, Daniel; Slanina, Susan M.; Yukht, Ada; Ghiasi, Homayon; Osorio, Nelson; Mott, Kevin R.; Maguen, Barak; Jin, Ling; Nesburn, Anthony B.; Wechsler, Steven L.

    2001-01-01

    Herpes simplex virus type 1 latency-associated transcript (LAT)-null mutants have decreased reactivation but normal virulence in rabbits and mice. We report here on dLAT1.5, a mutant with LAT nucleotides 76 to 1667 deleted. Following ocular infection of rabbits, dLAT1.5 reactivated at a lower rate than its wild-type parent McKrae (6.1 versus 11.8%; P = 0.0025 [chi-square test]). Reactivation was restored in the marker-rescued virus dLAT1.5R (12.6%; P = 0.53 versus wild type), confirming the importance of the deleted region in spontaneous reactivation. Compared with wild-type or marker-rescued virus, dLAT1.5 had similar or slightly reduced virulence in rabbits (based on survival following ocular infection). In contrast, in mice, dLAT1.5 had increased virulence (P Wechsler, J. Virol. 73:920–929, 1999), had decreased virulence in mice (P = 0.03). In addition, we also found that dLAT371, a LAT mutant that we previously reported to have wild-type virulence in rabbits (G. C. Perng, S. M. Slanina, H. Ghiasi, A. B. Nesburn, and S. L. Wechsler, J. Virol. 70:2014–2018, 1996), had decreased virulence in mice (P < 0.05). Thus, these three mutants, each of which encodes a different LAT RNA, have different virulence phenotypes. dLAT1.5 had wild-type virulence in rabbits but increased virulence in mice. In contrast, LAT2.9A had increased virulence in rabbits but decreased virulence in mice, and dLAT371 had wild-type virulence in rabbits but decreased virulence in mice. Taken together, these results suggest that (i) the 5′ end of LAT and/or a gene that overlaps part of this region is involved in viral virulence, (ii) this virulence appears to have species-specific effects, and (iii) regulation of this virulence may be complex. PMID:11533165

  7. Phenotypic, antimicrobial susceptibility profile and virulence factors of Klebsiella pneumoniae isolated from buffalo and cow mastitic milk.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Osman, Kamelia M; Hassan, Hany M; Orabi, Ahmed; Abdelhafez, Ahmed S T

    2014-06-01

    Studies on the prevalence and virulence genes of Klebsiella mastitis pathogens in a buffalo population are undocumented. Also, the association of rmpA kfu, uge, magA, Aerobactin, K1 and K2 virulent factors with K. pneumoniae buffalo, and cow mastitis is unreported. The virulence of K. pneumoniae was evaluated through both phenotypic and molecular assays. In vivo virulence was assessed by the Vero cell cytotoxicity, suckling mouse assay and mice lethality test. Antimicrobial susceptibility was tested by disk diffusion method. The 45 K. pneumoniae isolates from buffalo (n = 10/232) and cow (n = 35/293) milk were isolated (45/525; 8.6%) and screened via PCR for seven virulence genes encoding uridine diphosphate galactose 4 epimerase encoding gene responsible for capsule and smooth lipopolysaccharide synthesis (uge), siderophores (kfu and aerobactin), protectines or invasins (rmpA and magA), and the capsule and hypermucoviscosity (K1 and K2). The most common virulence genes were rmpA, kfu, uge, and magA (77.8% each). Aerobactin and K1 genes were found at medium rates of 66.7% each and K2 (55.6%). The Vero cell cytotoxicity and LD (50) in mice were found in 100% of isolates. A multidrug resistance pattern was observed for 40% of the antimicrobials. The distribution of virulence profiles indicate a role of rmpA, kfu, uge, magA, Aerobactin, and K1 and K2 in pathogenicity of K. pneumoniae in udder infections and invasiveness, and constitutes a threat for vulnerable animals, even more if they are in combination with antibiotic resistance.

  8. Invasive mold infections: virulence and pathogenesis of mucorales.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morace, Giulia; Borghi, Elisa

    2012-01-01

    Mucorales have been increasingly reported as cause of invasive fungal infections in immunocompromised subjects, particularly in patients with haematological malignancies or uncontrolled diabetes mellitus and in those under deferoxamine treatment or undergoing dialysis. The disease often leads to a fatal outcome, but the pathogenesis of the infection is still poorly understood as well as the role of specific virulence determinants and the interaction with the host immune system. Members of the order Mucorales are responsible of almost all cases of invasive mucormycoses, the majority of the etiological agents belonging to the Mucoraceae family. Mucorales are able to produce various proteins and metabolic products toxic to animals and humans, but the pathogenic role of these potential virulence factors is unknown. The availability of free iron in plasma and tissues is believed to be crucial for the pathogenesis of these mycoses. Vascular invasion and neurotropism are considered common pathogenic features of invasive mucormycoses.

  9. Invasive Mold Infections: Virulence and Pathogenesis of Mucorales

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    Giulia Morace

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Mucorales have been increasingly reported as cause of invasive fungal infections in immunocompromised subjects, particularly in patients with haematological malignancies or uncontrolled diabetes mellitus and in those under deferoxamine treatment or undergoing dialysis. The disease often leads to a fatal outcome, but the pathogenesis of the infection is still poorly understood as well as the role of specific virulence determinants and the interaction with the host immune system. Members of the order Mucorales are responsible of almost all cases of invasive mucormycoses, the majority of the etiological agents belonging to the Mucoraceae family. Mucorales are able to produce various proteins and metabolic products toxic to animals and humans, but the pathogenic role of these potential virulence factors is unknown. The availability of free iron in plasma and tissues is believed to be crucial for the pathogenesis of these mycoses. Vascular invasion and neurotropism are considered common pathogenic features of invasive mucormycoses.

  10. Streptomyces coelicolor Encodes a Urate-Responsive Transcriptional Regulator with Homology to PecS from Plant Pathogens

    OpenAIRE

    Huang, Hao; Mackel, Brian J.; Grove, Anne

    2013-01-01

    Many transcriptional regulators control gene activity by responding to specific ligands. Members of the multiple-antibiotic resistance regulator (MarR) family of transcriptional regulators feature prominently in this regard, and they frequently function as repressors in the absence of their cognate ligands. Plant pathogens such as Dickeya dadantii encode a MarR homolog named PecS that controls expression of a gene encoding the efflux pump PecM in addition to other virulence genes. We report h...

  11. Tyrosylprotein sulfotransferase-1 and tyrosine sulfation of chemokine receptor 4 are induced by Epstein-Barr virus encoded latent membrane protein 1 and associated with the metastatic potential of human nasopharyngeal carcinoma.

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    Juan Xu

    Full Text Available The latent membrane protein 1 (LMP1, which is encoded by the Epstein-Barr virus (EBV, is an important oncogenic protein that is closely related to carcinogenesis and metastasis of nasopharyngeal carcinoma (NPC, a prevalent cancer in China. We previously reported that the expression of the functional chemokine receptor CXCR4 is associated with human NPC metastasis. In this study, we show that LMP1 induces tyrosine sulfation of CXCR4 through tyrosylprotein sulfotransferase-1 (TPST-1, an enzyme that is responsible for catalysis of tyrosine sulfation in vivo, which is likely to contribute to the highly metastatic character of NPC. LMP1 could induce tyrosine sulfation of CXCR4 and its associated cell motility and invasiveness in a NPC cell culture model. In contrast, the expression of TPST-1 small interfering RNA reversed LMP1-induced tyrosine sulfation of CXCR4. LMP1 conveys signals through the epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR pathway, and EGFR-targeted siRNA inhibited the induction of TPST-1 by LMP1. We used a ChIP assay to show that EGFR could bind to the TPST-1 promoter in vivo under the control of LMP1. A reporter gene assay indicated that the activity of the TPST-1 promoter could be suppressed by deleting the binding site between EGFR and TPST-1. Finally, in human NPC tissues, the expression of TPST-1 and LMP1 was directly correlated and clinically, the expression of TPST-1 was associated with metastasis. These results suggest the up-regulation of TPST-1 and tyrosine sulfation of CXCR4 by LMP1 might be a potential mechanism contributing to NPC metastasis.

  12. Virulence regulation in Staphylococcus aureus: the need for in vivo analysis of virulence factor regulation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pragman, Alexa A; Schlievert, Patrick M

    2004-10-01

    Staphylococcus aureus is a pathogenic microorganism that is responsible for a wide variety of clinical infections. These infections can be relatively mild, but serious, life-threatening infections may result from the expression of staphylococcal virulence factors that are coordinated by virulence regulators. Much work has been done to characterize the actions of staphylococcal virulence regulators in broth culture. Recently, several laboratories showed that transcriptional analyses of virulence regulators in in vivo animal models or in human infection did not correlate with transcriptional analyses accomplished in vitro. In describing the differences between in vitro and in vivo transcription of staphylococcal virulence regulators, we hope to encourage investigators to study virulence regulators using infection models whenever possible.

  13. Comparative genomic analysis of Vibrio parahaemolyticus: serotype conversion and virulence

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    Gil Ana I

    2011-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Vibrio parahaemolyticus is a common cause of foodborne disease. Beginning in 1996, a more virulent strain having serotype O3:K6 caused major outbreaks in India and other parts of the world, resulting in the emergence of a pandemic. Other serovariants of this strain emerged during its dissemination and together with the original O3:K6 were termed strains of the pandemic clone. Two genomes, one of this virulent strain and one pre-pandemic strain have been sequenced. We sequenced four additional genomes of V. parahaemolyticus in this study that were isolated from different geographical regions and time points. Comparative genomic analyses of six strains of V. parahaemolyticus isolated from Asia and Peru were performed in order to advance knowledge concerning the evolution of V. parahaemolyticus; specifically, the genetic changes contributing to serotype conversion and virulence. Two pre-pandemic strains and three pandemic strains, isolated from different geographical regions, were serotype O3:K6 and either toxin profiles (tdh+, trh- or (tdh-, trh+. The sixth pandemic strain sequenced in this study was serotype O4:K68. Results Genomic analyses revealed that the trh+ and tdh+ strains had different types of pathogenicity islands and mobile elements as well as major structural differences between the tdh pathogenicity islands of the pre-pandemic and pandemic strains. In addition, the results of single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP analysis showed that 94% of the SNPs between O3:K6 and O4:K68 pandemic isolates were within a 141 kb region surrounding the O- and K-antigen-encoding gene clusters. The "core" genes of V. parahaemolyticus were also compared to those of V. cholerae and V. vulnificus, in order to delineate differences between these three pathogenic species. Approximately one-half (49-59% of each species' core genes were conserved in all three species, and 14-24% of the core genes were species-specific and in different

  14. Evaluating Different Virulence Traits of Klebsiella pneumoniae Using Dictyostelium discoideum and Zebrafish Larvae as Host Models

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    Andrés E. Marcoleta

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available Multiresistant and invasive hypervirulent Klebsiella pneumoniae strains have become one of the most urgent bacterial pathogen threats. Recent analyses revealed a high genomic plasticity of this species, harboring a variety of mobile genetic elements associated with virulent strains, encoding proteins of unknown function whose possible role in pathogenesis have not been addressed. K. pneumoniae virulence has been studied mainly in animal models such as mice and pigs, however, practical, financial, ethical and methodological issues limit the use of mammal hosts. Consequently, the development of simple and cost-effective experimental approaches with alternative host models is needed. In this work we described the use of both, the social amoeba and professional phagocyte Dictyostelium discoideum and the fish Danio rerio (zebrafish as surrogate host models to study K. pneumoniae virulence. We compared three K. pneumoniae clinical isolates evaluating their resistance to phagocytosis, intracellular survival, lethality, intestinal colonization, and innate immune cells recruitment. Optical transparency of both host models permitted studying the infective process in vivo, following the Klebsiella-host interactions through live-cell imaging. We demonstrated that K. pneumoniae RYC492, but not the multiresistant strains 700603 and BAA-1705, is virulent to both host models and elicits a strong immune response. Moreover, this strain showed a high resistance to phagocytosis by D. discoideum, an increased ability to form biofilms and a more prominent and irregular capsule. Besides, the strain 700603 showed the unique ability to replicate inside amoeba cells. Genomic comparison of the K. pneumoniae strains showed that the RYC492 strain has a higher overall content of virulence factors although no specific genes could be linked to its phagocytosis resistance, nor to the intracellular survival observed for the 700603 strain. Our results indicate that both zebrafish

  15. MaHog1, a Hog1-type mitogen-activated protein kinase gene, contributes to stress tolerance and virulence of the entomopathogenic fungus Metarhizium acridum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jin, Kai; Ming, Yue; Xia, Yu Xian

    2012-12-01

    Fungal biocontrol agents have great potential in integrated pest management. However, poor efficacy and sensitivity to various adverse factors have hampered their wide application. In eukaryotic cells, Hog1 kinase plays a critical role in stress responses. In this study, MaHog1 (GenBank accession no. EFY85878), encoding a member of the Hog1/Sty1/p38 mitogen-activated protein kinase family in Metarhizium (Me.) acridum, was identified. Targeted gene disruption was used to analyse the role of MaHog1 in virulence and tolerance of adverse factors. Mutants with MaHog1 depletion showed increased sensitivity to high osmotic stress, high temperature and oxidative stress, and exhibited remarkable resistance to cell wall-disturbing agents. These results suggest that Hog1 kinase has a conserved function in regulating multistress responses among fungi, and that MaHog1 might influence cell wall biogenesis in Me. acridum. Bioassays conducted with topical inoculation and intrahaemocoel injection revealed that MaHog1 is required for both penetration and postpenetration development of Me. acridum. MaHog1 disruption resulted in a significant reduction in virulence, likely due to the combination of a decrease in conidial germination, a reduction in appressorium formation and a decline in growth rate in insect haemolymph, which might be caused by impairing fungal tolerance of various stresses during infection.

  16. [Virulence and its relationship to antibiotic resistance].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Joly-Guillou, M L

    1998-12-01

    PATHOGENIC ISLANDS: Certain DNA blocks inserted into the chromosome of most Gram negative bacteria originated in pathogens found in plants. VIRULENCE-ANTIBIOTIC INTERACTIONS: During the invasive phase, the bacterial cell covers itself with adhesins which facilitate its adherence to tissues. The bacterial cell produces a fibronectin which protects its defense systems. Antibiotics favor bacterial resistance by increasing the expression of surface adhesins and fibronectin production. PENICILLIN RESISTANT PNEUMOCOCCI: Experimental models have demonstrated that mortality in mice and host resistance to pneumococcal infection are related to the type of capsule and not to antibiotic resistance. QUORUM SENSING: The bacterial inoculum regulates the production of virulence factors in vivo via quorum sensing. This regulation can play an important role in Pseudomonas aeruginosa infections. ACINETOBACTER BAUMANNI VIRULENCE: Long poorly understood, factors favoring A. baumanni virulence appear to result from bacterial production of IROMPs in the extracellular growth medium in response to iron depletion during the exponential growth phase.

  17. Virulence Factors IN Fungi OF Systemic Mycoses

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    KUROKAWA Cilmery Suemi

    1998-01-01

    Full Text Available Pathogenic fungi that cause systemic mycoses retain several factors which allow their growth in adverse conditions provided by the host, leading to the establishment of the parasitic relationship and contributing to disease development. These factors are known as virulence factors which favor the infection process and the pathogenesis of the mycoses. The present study evaluates the virulence factors of pathogenic fungi such as Blastomyces dermatitidis, Coccidioides immitis, Cryptococcus neoformans, Histoplasma capsulatum and Paracoccidioides brasiliensis in terms of thermotolerance, dimorphism, capsule or cell wall components as well as enzyme production. Virulence factors favor fungal adhesion, colonization, dissemination and the ability to survive in hostile environments and elude the immune response mechanisms of the host. Both the virulence factors presented by different fungi and the defense mechanisms provided by the host require action and interaction of complex processes whose knowledge allows a better understanding of the pathogenesis of systemic mycoses.

  18. Insights on the virulence mechanisms of European Edwardsiella tarda strains isolated from turbot

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    Nuria Castro Iglesias

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available Edwardsiella tarda is a common inhabitant of diverse ecological niches as well as a common guest of a high variety of animals including fish, reptiles, amphibians, chickens and other warm-blooded animals as humans. With regard to the aquatic environments, E. tarda has been described as the causative agent of infections in more than 20 fish species including some important fish species in aquaculture industry. Several potential pathogenic properties have been suggested to contribute to the infection process of E. tarda, which include adhesins, Type III and Type VI secretion system, and ability to survive and replicate in phagocytes, among others. Identification of these virulence-related genes is essential for understanding the pathogenesis of the species. Since E. tarda causes great losses in the Chinese aquaculture, great efforts have been recently devoted to study the pathogenicity mechanism of E. tarda in Asian countries. However, all these studies were conducted employing Asian isolates. Being E. tarda a pathogen of great economical concern in European turbot aquaculture and since the high intraspecific variability of E. tarda is well known, it becomes evident that additional pathogenicity studies conducted with non-Asiatic strains are needed. Enzymes such as chondroitinase are believed to play an important role in the pathogenicity of bacteria that cause infections (Tam et al., 1982. Chondroitinase activity was proposed to be one virulence contributor in Edwardsiella spp. and mediates the cartilage degradation in the chronic “hole-in-the-head” lesion. In Gram-negative bacteria, the most intensively studied quorum sensing systems rely on the use of N-acylhomoserine lactones (AHLs, which production is common among marine and fish pathogenic Proteobacteria, controlling the expression of key virulence factors. In the case of E. tarda, strain NUF251 from diseased flounder had the ability to produce two kinds of AHL molecules. It is likely

  19. A bistable switch and anatomical site control Vibrio cholerae virulence gene expression in the intestine.

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    Alex T Nielsen

    2010-09-01

    Full Text Available A fundamental, but unanswered question in host-pathogen interactions is the timing, localization and population distribution of virulence gene expression during infection. Here, microarray and in situ single cell expression methods were used to study Vibrio cholerae growth and virulence gene expression during infection of the rabbit ligated ileal loop model of cholera. Genes encoding the toxin-coregulated pilus (TCP and cholera toxin (CT were powerfully expressed early in the infectious process in bacteria adjacent to epithelial surfaces. Increased growth was found to co-localize with virulence gene expression. Significant heterogeneity in the expression of tcpA, the repeating subunit of TCP, was observed late in the infectious process. The expression of tcpA, studied in single cells in a homogeneous medium, demonstrated unimodal induction of tcpA after addition of bicarbonate, a chemical inducer of virulence gene expression. Striking bifurcation of the population occurred during entry into stationary phase: one subpopulation continued to express tcpA, whereas the expression declined in the other subpopulation. ctxA, encoding the A subunit of CT, and toxT, encoding the proximal master regulator of virulence gene expression also exhibited the bifurcation phenotype. The bifurcation phenotype was found to be reversible, epigenetic and to persist after removal of bicarbonate, features consistent with bistable switches. The bistable switch requires the positive-feedback circuit controlling ToxT expression and formation of the CRP-cAMP complex during entry into stationary phase. Key features of this bistable switch also were demonstrated in vivo, where striking heterogeneity in tcpA expression was observed in luminal fluid in later stages of the infection. When this fluid was diluted into artificial seawater, bacterial aggregates continued to express tcpA for prolonged periods of time. The bistable control of virulence gene expression points to a

  20. Evaluating virulence of waterborne and clinical Aeromonas isolates using gene expression and mortality in neonatal mice followed by assessing cell culture’s ability to predict virulence based on transcriptional response

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hayes, S L; Rodgers, M R; Lye, D J; Stelma, G N; McKinstry, Craig A.; Malard, Joel M.; Vesper, Sephen J.

    2007-10-01

    Aims: To assess the virulence of Aeromonas spp. using two models, a neonatal mouse assay and a mouse intestinal cell culture. Methods and Results: After artificial infection with a variety of Aeromonas spp., mRNA extracts from the two models were processed and hydridized to murine microarrays to determine host gene response. Definition of virulence was determined based on host mRNA production in murine neonatal intestinal tissue and mortality of infected animals. Infections of mouse intestinal cell cultures were then performed to determine whether this simpler model system’s mRNA responses correlated to neonatal results and therefore be predictive of virulence of Aeromonas spp. Virulent aeromonads up-regulated transcripts in both models including multiple host defense gene products (chemokines, regulation of transcription and apoptosis and cell signalling). Avirulent species exhibited little or no host response in neonates. Mortality results correlated well with both bacterial dose and average fold change of up-regulated transcripts in the neonatal mice. Conclusions: Cell culture results were less discriminating but showed promise as potentially being able to be predictive of virulence. Jun oncogene up-regulation in murine cell culture is potentially predictive of Aeromonas virulence. Significance and Impact of the Study: Having the ability to determine virulence of waterborne pathogens quickly would potentially assist public health officials to rapidly assess exposure risks.

  1. Comparative genomics and transcriptomics of Escherichia coli isolates carrying virulence factors of both enteropathogenic and enterotoxigenic E. coli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hazen, Tracy H; Michalski, Jane; Luo, Qingwei; Shetty, Amol C; Daugherty, Sean C; Fleckenstein, James M; Rasko, David A

    2017-06-14

    Escherichia coli that are capable of causing human disease are often classified into pathogenic variants (pathovars) based on their virulence gene content. However, disease-associated hybrid E. coli, containing unique combinations of multiple canonical virulence factors have also been described. Such was the case of the E. coli O104:H4 outbreak in 2011, which caused significant morbidity and mortality. Among the pathovars of diarrheagenic E. coli that cause significant human disease are the enteropathogenic E. coli (EPEC) and enterotoxigenic E. coli (ETEC). In the current study we use comparative genomics, transcriptomics, and functional studies to characterize isolates that contain virulence factors of both EPEC and ETEC. Based on phylogenomic analysis, these hybrid isolates are more genomically-related to EPEC, but appear to have acquired ETEC virulence genes. Global transcriptional analysis using RNA sequencing, demonstrated that the EPEC and ETEC virulence genes of these hybrid isolates were differentially-expressed under virulence-inducing laboratory conditions, similar to reference isolates. Immunoblot assays further verified that the virulence gene products were produced and that the T3SS effector EspB of EPEC, and heat-labile toxin of ETEC were secreted. These findings document the existence and virulence potential of an E. coli pathovar hybrid that blurs the distinction between E. coli pathovars.

  2. Virulence Factors of Helicobacter pylori

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Paul Sinclair

    1991-01-01

    environment with respect to pH. The spiral shape of the cells and their flagellar motility allow them to wind themselves into the mucous layer of the stomach. Some evidence exists for the production of strong proteolytic activity, hence degrading the mucous barrier and increasing permeability for the organism. Cyroroxin excreted by the bacteria may have some effect on the surrounding cells, with the possible lysis and release of bacterial growth factors. There is evidence that a chemotactic response is present due to these growth factors and their higher concentration in the intracellular spaces. The presence of specific and nonspecific adhesion has also been demonstrated, thus allowing the bacterium, once at the epithelial cell surface, to attach and avoid being washed off by movement within the stomach. Although treatment with antimicrobials eradicates the organism and improves symptoms of peptic ulcer patients, there is no indication that the same occurs in nonulcer dyspepsia patients. Further work is essential to describe the virulence mechanisms of H pylori and the possible pathogenic role of the organism.

  3. A functional gene array for detection of bacterial virulence elements

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Jaing, C

    2007-11-01

    We report our development of the first of a series of microarrays designed to detect pathogens with known mechanisms of virulence and antibiotic resistance. By targeting virulence gene families as well as genes unique to specific biothreat agents, these arrays will provide important data about the pathogenic potential and drug resistance profiles of unknown organisms in environmental samples. To validate our approach, we developed a first generation array targeting genes from Escherichia coli strains K12 and CFT073, Enterococcus faecalis and Staphylococcus aureus. We determined optimal probe design parameters for microorganism detection and discrimination, measured the required target concentration, and assessed tolerance for mismatches between probe and target sequences. Mismatch tolerance is a priority for this application, due to DNA sequence variability among members of gene families. Arrays were created using the NimbleGen Maskless Array Synthesizer at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory. Purified genomic DNA from combinations of one or more of the four target organisms, pure cultures of four related organisms, and environmental aerosol samples with spiked-in genomic DNA were hybridized to the arrays. Based on the success of this prototype, we plan to design further arrays in this series, with the goal of detecting all known virulence and antibiotic resistance gene families in a greatly expanded set of organisms.

  4. Virulence Factors Associated with Pediatric Shigellosis in Brazilian Amazon

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    Carolinie Batista Nobre da Cruz

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Shigellosis is a global human health problem and the incidence is highest among children. In the present work, main Shigella virulence genes was examined by PCR and compared to symptoms of pediatric shigellosis. Thirty Shigella isolates were identified from an etiologic study at which 1,339 children ranging 0–10 years old were enrolled. S. flexneri was the most frequent species reaching 60.0% of isolates, 22.2% were S. sonnei, and 6.6% were both S. dysenteriae and S. boydii. All Shigella infected children had diarrhea, but not all were accompanied by others symptoms of bacillary dysentery. Among major virulence genes, the PCR typing revealed ipaBCD was present in all isolates, followed by IpaH7.8, set-1A, set-1B, sen/ospD3, virF, and invE. The pathogenic potential of the ShET-1B subunit was observed in relation to dehydration (P<0.001 and ShET-2 related to the intestinal injury (P=0.033 evidenced by the presence of bloody diarrhea. Our results show associations among symptoms of shigellosis and virulence genes of clinical isolates of Shigella spp.

  5. Evaluation of phytochemicals from medicinal plants of Myrtaceae family on virulence factor production by Pseudomonas aeruginosa.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Musthafa, Khadar Syed; Sianglum, Wipawadee; Saising, Jongkon; Lethongkam, Sakkarin; Voravuthikunchai, Supayang Piyawan

    2017-05-01

    Virulence factors regulated by quorum sensing (QS) play a critical role in the pathogenesis of an opportunistic human pathogen, Pseudomonas aeruginosa in causing infections to the host. Hence, in the present work, the anti-virulence potential of the medicinal plant extracts and their derived phytochemicals from Myrtaceae family was evaluated against P. aeruginosa. In the preliminary screening of the tested medicinal plant extracts, Syzygium jambos and Syzygium antisepticum demonstrated a maximum inhibition in QS-dependent violacein pigment production by Chromobacterium violaceum DMST 21761. These extracts demonstrated an inhibitory activity over a virulence factor, pyoverdin, production by P. aeruginosa ATCC 27853. Gas chromatography-mass spectrometric (GC-MS) analysis revealed the presence of 23 and 12 phytochemicals from the extracts of S. jambos and S. antisepticum respectively. Three top-ranking phytochemicals, including phytol, ethyl linoleate and methyl linolenate, selected on the basis of docking score in molecular docking studies lowered virulence factors such as pyoverdin production, protease and haemolytic activities of P. aeruginosa to a significant level. In addition, the phytochemicals reduced rhamnolipid production by the organism. The work demonstrated an importance of plant-derived compounds as anti-virulence drugs to conquer P. aeruginosa virulence towards the host. © 2017 APMIS. Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  6. The Three Lineages of the Diploid Hybrid Verticillium longisporum Differ in Virulence and Pathogenicity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Novakazi, Fluturë; Inderbitzin, Patrik; Sandoya, German; Hayes, Ryan J; von Tiedemann, Andreas; Subbarao, Krishna V

    2015-05-01

    Verticillium longisporum is an economically important vascular pathogen of Brassicaceae crops in different parts of the world. V. longisporum is a diploid hybrid that consists of three different lineages, each of which originated from a separate hybridization event between two different sets of parental species. We used 20 isolates representing the three V. longisporum lineages and the relative V. dahliae, and performed pathogenicity tests on 11 different hosts, including artichoke, cabbage, cauliflower, cotton, eggplant, horseradish, lettuce, linseed, oilseed rape (canola), tomato, and watermelon. V. longisporum was overall more virulent on the Brassicaceae crops than V. dahliae, which was more virulent than V. longisporum across the non-Brassicaceae crops. There were differences in virulence between the three V. longisporum lineages. V. longisporum lineage A1/D1 was the most virulent lineage on oilseed rape, and V. longisporum lineage A1/D2 was the most virulent lineage on cabbage and horseradish. We also found that on the non-Brassicaceae hosts eggplant, tomato, lettuce, and watermelon, V. longisporum was more or equally virulent than V. dahliae. This suggests that V. longisporum may have a wider potential host range than currently appreciated.

  7. A polymerase chain reaction assay for detection of virulent and attenuated strains of duck plague virus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xie, Liji; Xie, Zhixun; Huang, Li; Wang, Sheng; Huang, Jiaoling; Zhang, Yanfang; Zeng, Tingting; Luo, Sisi

    2017-11-01

    Sequence analysis of duck plague virus (DPV) revealed that there was a 528bp (B fragment) deletion within the UL2 gene of DPV attenuated vaccine strain in comparison with field virulent strains. The finding of gene deletion provides a potential differentiation test between DPV virulent strain and attenuated strain based on their UL2 gene sizes. Thus we developed a polymerase chain reaction (PCR) assay targeting to the DPV UL2 gene for simultaneous detection of DPV virulent strain and attenuated strain, 827bp for virulent strain and 299bp for attenuated strain. This newly developed PCR for DPV was highly sensitive and specific. It detected as low as 100fg of DNA on both DPV virulent and attenuated strains, no same size bands were amplified from other duck viruses including duck paramyxovirus, duck tembusu virus, duck circovirus, Muscovy duck parvovirus, duck hepatitis virus type I, avian influenza virus and gosling plague virus. Therefore, this PCR assay can be used for the rapid, sensitive and specific detection of DPV virulent and attenuated strains affecting ducks. Copyright © 2017. Published by Elsevier B.V.

  8. Degradation of the benzoxazolinone class of phytoalexins is important for virulence of Fusarium pseudograminearum towards wheat.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kettle, Andrew J; Batley, Jacqueline; Benfield, Aurelie H; Manners, John M; Kazan, Kemal; Gardiner, Donald M

    2015-12-01

    Wheat, maize, rye and certain other agriculturally important species in the Poaceae family produce the benzoxazolinone class of phytoalexins on pest and pathogen attack. Benzoxazolinones can inhibit the growth of pathogens. However, certain fungi can actively detoxify these compounds. Despite this, a clear link between the ability to detoxify benzoxazolinones and pathogen virulence has not been shown. Here, through comparative genome analysis of several Fusarium species, we have identified a conserved genomic region around the FDB2 gene encoding an N-malonyltransferase enzyme known to be involved in benzoxazolinone degradation in the maize pathogen Fusarium verticillioides. Expression analyses demonstrated that a cluster of nine genes was responsive to exogenous benzoxazolinone in the important wheat pathogen Fusarium pseudograminearum. The analysis of independent F. pseudograminearum FDB2 knockouts and complementation of the knockout with FDB2 homologues from F. graminearum and F. verticillioides confirmed that the N-malonyltransferase enzyme encoded by this gene is central to the detoxification of benzoxazolinones, and that Fdb2 contributes quantitatively to virulence towards wheat in head blight inoculation assays. This contrasts with previous observations in F. verticillioides, where no effect of FDB2 mutations on pathogen virulence towards maize was observed. Overall, our results demonstrate that the detoxification of benzoxazolinones is a strategy adopted by wheat-infecting F. pseudograminearum to overcome host-derived chemical defences. © 2015 BSPP AND JOHN WILEY & SONS LTD.

  9. Identification and characterization of Nip, necrosis-inducing virulence protein of Erwinia carotovora subsp. carotovora.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mattinen, Laura; Tshuikina, Marina; Mäe, Andres; Pirhonen, Minna

    2004-12-01

    Erwinia carotovora subsp. carotovora is a gram-negative bacterium that causes soft rot disease of many cultivated crops. When a collection of E. carotovora subsp. carotovora isolates was analyzed on a Southern blot using the harpin-encoding gene hrpN as probe, several harpinless isolates were found. Regulation of virulence determinants in one of these, strain SCC3193, has been characterized extensively. It is fully virulent on potato and in Arabidopsis thaliana. An RpoS (SigmaS) mutant of SCC3193, producing elevated levels of secreted proteins, was found to cause lesions resembling the hypersensitive response when infiltrated into tobacco leaf tissue. This phenotype was evident only when bacterial cells had been cultivated on solid minimal medium at low pH and temperature. The protein causing'the cell death was purified and sequenced, and the corresponding gene was cloned. The deduced sequence of the necrosis-inducing protein (Nip) showed homology to necrosis- and ethylene-inducing elicitors of fungi and oomycetes. A mutant strain of E. carotovora subsp. carotovora lacking the nip gene showed reduced virulence in potato tuber assay but was unaffected in virulence in potato stem or on other tested host plants.

  10. The virulence regulator PrfA promotes biofilm formation by Listeria monocytogenes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lemon, Katherine P; Freitag, Nancy E; Kolter, Roberto

    2010-08-01

    Listeria monocytogenes is a food-borne facultative intracellular pathogen. It is widespread in the environment and has several distinct life-styles. The key transcriptional activator PrfA positively regulates L. monocytogenes virulence genes to mediate the transition from extracellular, flagellum-propelled cell to intracellular pathogen. Here we report the first evidence that PrfA also has a significant positive impact on extracellular biofilm formation. Mutants lacking prfA were defective in surface-adhered biofilm formation. The DeltaprfA mutant exhibited wild-type flagellar motility, and its biofilm defect occurred after initial surface adhesion. We also observed that mutations that led to the constitutive expression of PrfA-dependent virulence genes had a minimal impact on biofilm formation. Furthermore, biofilm development was enhanced in a mutant encoding a PrfA protein variant unable to fully transition from the extracellular form to the virulent, intracellular activity conformation. These results indicate that PrfA positively regulates biofilm formation and suggest that PrfA has a global role in modulating the life-style of L. monocytogenes. The requirement of PrfA for optimal biofilm formation may provide selective pressure to maintain this critical virulence regulator when L. monocytogenes is outside host cells in the environment.

  11. Antimicrobial resistance, virulence, and phylogenetic characteristics of Escherichia coli isolates from clinically healthy swine.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lay, Khin Khin; Koowattananukul, Chailai; Chansong, Nisit; Chuanchuen, Rungtip

    2012-11-01

    A total of 344 commensal Escherichia coli isolates from clinically healthy pigs were examined for antimicrobial resistance phenotypes, class 1 integrons, resistance genes, virulence gene profile, and phylogenetic groups. The majority of E. coli isolates were resistant to tetracycline (96.2%) and ampicillin (91.6%). Up to 98% were multidrug resistant. Seventy-three percent of the isolates carried class 1 integrons. Inserted-gene cassette arrays in variable regions included incomplete sat, aadA22, aadA1, dfrA12-aadA2, and sat-psp-aadA2, of which the aadA2 gene cassette was most prevalent (42.9%). Horizontal transfer was detected in eight E. coli isolates carrying class 1 integrons with dfrA12-aadA2 gene cassette array. Sixteen resistance genes were identified among the E. coli isolates with corresponding resistance phenotype. Ten virulence genes (including elt, estA, estB, astA, faeG, fasA, fedA, eaeA, paa, and sepA) were detected, of which fasA was most commonly found (98.3%). Most of the E. coli isolates belonged to phylogenetic group B1. Significantly positive associations were observed between some virulence genes and some resistance phenotypes and genotypes (p antimicrobial resistance-encoding genes and virulence determinants.

  12. Thiophenone Attenuates Enteropathogenic Escherichia coli O103:H2 Virulence by Interfering with AI-2 Signaling.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Witsø, Ingun Lund; Valen Rukke, Håkon; Benneche, Tore; Aamdal Scheie, Anne

    2016-01-01

    Interference with bacterial quorum sensing communication provides an anti-virulence strategy to control pathogenic bacteria. Here, using the Enteropathogenic E. coli (EPEC) O103:H2, we showed for the first time that thiophenone TF101 reduced expression of lsrB; the gene encoding the AI-2 receptor. Combined results of transcriptional and phenotypic analyses suggested that TF101 interfere with AI-2 signalling, possibly by competing with AI-2 for binding to LsrB. This is supported by in silico docking prediction of thiophenone TF101 in the LsrB pocket. Transcriptional analyses furthermore showed that thiophenone TF101 interfered with expression of the virulence genes eae and fimH. In addition, TF101 reduced AI-2 induced E. coli adhesion to colorectal adenocarcinoma cells. TF101, on the other hand, did not affect epinephrine or norepinephrine enhanced E. coli adhesion. Overall, our results showed that thiophenone TF101 interfered with virulence expression in E. coli O103:H2, suggestedly by interfering with AI-2 mediated quorum sensing. We thus conclude that thiophenone TF101 might represent a promising future anti-virulence agent in the fight against pathogenic E. coli.

  13. A preliminary survey of M. hyopneumoniae virulence factors based on comparative genomic analysis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Henrique Bunselmeyer Ferreira

    2007-01-01

    Full Text Available Mycoplasma hyopneumoniae is the etiological agent of porcine enzootic pneumonia (PEP, a major problem for the pig industry. The mechanisms of M. hyopneumoniae pathogenicity allow to predict the existence of several classes of virulence factors, whose study has been essentially restricted to the characterization of adhesion-related and major antigenic proteins. The now available complete sequences of the genomes of two pathogenic and one non-pathogenic strain of M. hyopneumoniae allowed to use a comparative genomics approach to putatively identify virulence genes. In this preliminary survey, we were able to identify 118 CDSs encoding putative virulence factors, based on specific criteria ranging from predicted cell surface location or variation between strains to previous functional studies showing antigenicity or involvement in host-pathogen interaction. This survey is expected to serve as a first step towards the functional characterization of new virulence genes/proteins that will be important not only for a better comprehension of M. hyopneumoniae biology, but also for the development of new and improved protocols for PEP vaccination, diagnosis and treatment.

  14. Characterisation of virulence genes in methicillin susceptible and resistant Staphylococcus aureus isolates from a paediatric population in a university hospital of Medellín, Colombia

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    Judy Natalia Jiménez

    2011-12-01

    Full Text Available Virulence and antibiotic resistance are significant determinants of the types of infections caused by Staphylococcus aureus and paediatric groups remain among the most commonly affected populations. The goal of this study was to characterise virulence genes of methicillin-susceptible S. aureus (MSSA and methicillin-resistant S. aureus (MRSA strains isolated from a paediatric population of a Colombian University Hospital during 2009. Sixty MSSA and MRSA isolates were obtained from paediatric patients between zero-14 years. We identified the genes encoding virulence factors, which included Panton-Valentine leucocidine (PVL, staphylococcal enterotoxins A-E, exfoliative toxins A and B and toxic shock syndrome toxin 1. Typing of the staphylococcal chromosome cassette mec (SCCmec was performed in MRSA strains. The virulence genes were more diverse and frequent in MSSA than in MRSA isolates (83% vs. 73%. MRSA strains harboured SCCmec types IVc (60%, I (30%, IVa (7% and V (3%. SCCmec type IVc isolates frequently carried the PVL encoding genes and harboured virulence determinants resembling susceptible strains while SCCmec type I isolates were often negative. PVL was not exclusive to skin and soft tissue infections. As previously suggested, these differences in the distribution of virulence factor genes may be due to the fitness cost associated with methicillin resistance.

  15. Characterisation of virulence genes in methicillin susceptible and resistant Staphylococcus aureus isolates from a paediatric population in a university hospital of Medellín, Colombia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jiménez, Judy Natalia; Ocampo, Ana María; Vanegas, Johanna Marcela; Rodríguez, Erika Andrea; Garcés, Carlos Guillermo; Patiño, Luz Adriana; Ospina, Sigifredo; Correa, Margarita María

    2011-12-01

    Virulence and antibiotic resistance are significant determinants of the types of infections caused by Staphylococcus aureus and paediatric groups remain among the most commonly affected populations. The goal of this study was to characterise virulence genes of methicillin-susceptible S. aureus (MSSA) and methicillin-resistant S. aureus (MRSA) strains isolated from a paediatric population of a Colombian University Hospital during 2009. Sixty MSSA and MRSA isolates were obtained from paediatric patients between zero-14 years. We identified the genes encoding virulence factors, which included Panton-Valentine leucocidine (PVL), staphylococcal enterotoxins A-E, exfoliative toxins A and B and toxic shock syndrome toxin 1. Typing of the staphylococcal chromosome cassette mec (SCCmec) was performed in MRSA strains. The virulence genes were more diverse and frequent in MSSA than in MRSA isolates (83% vs. 73%). MRSA strains harboured SCCmec types IVc (60%), I (30%), IVa (7%) and V (3%). SCCmec type IVc isolates frequently carried the PVL encoding genes and harboured virulence determinants resembling susceptible strains while SCCmec type I isolates were often negative. PVL was not exclusive to skin and soft tissue infections. As previously suggested, these differences in the distribution of virulence factor genes may be due to the fitness cost associated with methicillin resistance.

  16. Selecting Operations for Assembler Encoding

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tomasz Praczyk

    2010-04-01

    Full Text Available Assembler Encoding is a neuro-evolutionary method in which a neural network is represented in the form of a simple program called Assembler Encoding Program. The task of the program is to create the so-called Network Definition Matrix which maintains all the information necessary to construct the network. To generate Assembler Encoding Programs and the subsequent neural networks evolutionary techniques are used.
    The performance of Assembler Encoding strongly depends on operations used in Assembler Encoding Programs. To select the most effective operations, experiments in the optimization and the predator-prey problem were carried out. In the experiments, Assembler Encoding Programs equipped with different types of operations were tested. The results of the tests are presented at the end of the paper.

  17. Identification of a secreted casein kinase 1 in Leishmania donovani: effect of protein over expression on parasite growth and virulence.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mary Dan-Goor

    Full Text Available Casein kinase 1 (CK1 plays an important role in eukaryotic signaling pathways, and their substrates include key regulatory proteins involved in cell differentiation, proliferation and chromosome segregation. The Leishmania genome encodes six potential CK1 isoforms, of which five have orthologs in other trypanosomatidae. Leishmania donovani CK1 isoform 4 (Ldck1.4, orthologous to LmjF27.1780 is unique to Leishmania and contains a putative secretion signal peptide. The full-length gene and three shorter constructs were cloned and expressed in E. coli as His-tag proteins. Only the full-length 62.3 kDa protein showed protein kinase activity indicating that the N-terminal and C-terminal domains are essential for protein activity. LdCK1.4-FLAG was stably over expressed in L. donovani, and shown by immunofluorescence to be localized primarily in the cytosol. Western blotting using anti-FLAG and anti-CK1.4 antibodies showed that this CK1 isoform is expressed and secreted by promastigotes. Over expression of LdCK1.4 had a significant effect on promastigote growth in culture with these parasites growing to higher cell densities than the control parasites (wild-type or Ld:luciferase, P<0.001. Analysis by flow cytometry showed a higher percentage, ∼4-5-fold, of virulent metacyclic promastigotes on day 3 among the LdCK1.4 parasites. Finally, parasites over expressing LdCK1.4 gave significantly higher infections of mouse peritoneal macrophages compared to wild-type parasites, 28.6% versus 6.3%, respectively (p = 0.0005. These results suggest that LdCK1.4 plays an important role in parasite survival and virulence. Further studies are needed to validate CK1.4 as a therapeutic target in Leishmania.

  18. A mutation in the aroE gene affects pigment production, virulence, and chemotaxis in Xanthomonas oryzae pv. oryzae.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Hong-Il; Noh, Tae-Hwan; Lee, Chang-Soo; Park, Young-Jin

    2015-01-01

    Xanthomonas oryzae pv. oryzae (Xoo) causes bacterial blight (BB) in rice. To study its function, a random insertion mutation library of Xoo was constructed using the Tn5 transposon. A mutant strain with decreased virulence against the susceptible rice cultivar IR24 was isolated from the library (aroE mutant), which also had extremely low pigment production. Thermal asymmetric interlaced-polymerase chain reaction (TAIL-PCR) and sequence analysis of the mutant revealed that the transposon was inserted into the aroE gene (encoding shikimate dehydrogenase). To investigate gene expression changes in the pigment- and virulence-deficient mutant, DNA microarray analysis was performed, which showed downregulation of 20 genes involved in the chemotaxis of Xoo. Our findings reveal that mutation of the aroE gene affects virulence and pigment production, as well as expression of genes involved in Xoo chemotaxis. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier GmbH. All rights reserved.

  19. Comparative genome analysis of 24 bovine-associated Staphylococcus isolates with special focus on the putative virulence genes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Åvall-Jääskeläinen, Silja; Paulin, Lars; Blom, Jochen

    2018-01-01

    Non-aureus staphylococci (NAS) are most commonly isolated from subclinical mastitis. Different NAS species may, however, have diverse effects on the inflammatory response in the udder. We determined the genome sequences of 20 staphylococcal isolates from clinical or subclinical bovine mastitis, belonging to the NAS species Staphylococcus agnetis, S. chromogenes, and S. simulans, and focused on the putative virulence factor genes present in the genomes. For comparison we used our previously published genome sequences of four S. aureus isolates from bovine mastitis. The pan-genome and core genomes of the non-aureus isolates were characterized. After that, putative virulence factor orthologues were searched in silico. We compared the presence of putative virulence factors in the NAS species and S. aureus and evaluated the potential association between bacterial genotype and type of mastitis (clinical vs. subclinical). The NAS isolates had much less virulence gene orthologues than the S. aureus isolates. One third of the virulence genes were detected only in S. aureus. About 100 virulence genes were present in all S. aureus isolates, compared to about 40 to 50 in each NAS isolate. S. simulans differed the most. Several of the virulence genes detected among NAS were harbored only by S. simulans, but it also lacked a number of genes present both in S. agnetis and S. chromogenes. The type of mastitis was not associated with any specific virulence gene profile. It seems that the virulence gene profiles or cumulative number of different virulence genes are not directly associated with the type of mastitis (clinical or subclinical), indicating that host derived factors such as the immune status play a pivotal role in the manifestation of mastitis. PMID:29610707

  20. Comparative genome analysis of 24 bovine-associated Staphylococcus isolates with special focus on the putative virulence genes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Silja Åvall-Jääskeläinen

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available Non-aureus staphylococci (NAS are most commonly isolated from subclinical mastitis. Different NAS species may, however, have diverse effects on the inflammatory response in the udder. We determined the genome sequences of 20 staphylococcal isolates from clinical or subclinical bovine mastitis, belonging to the NAS species Staphylococcus agnetis, S. chromogenes, and S. simulans, and focused on the putative virulence factor genes present in the genomes. For comparison we used our previously published genome sequences of four S. aureus isolates from bovine mastitis. The pan-genome and core genomes of the non-aureus isolates were characterized. After that, putative virulence factor orthologues were searched in silico. We compared the presence of putative virulence factors in the NAS species and S. aureus and evaluated the potential association between bacterial genotype and type of mastitis (clinical vs. subclinical. The NAS isolates had much less virulence gene orthologues than the S. aureus isolates. One third of the virulence genes were detected only in S. aureus. About 100 virulence genes were present in all S. aureus isolates, compared to about 40 to 50 in each NAS isolate. S. simulans differed the most. Several of the virulence genes detected among NAS were harbored only by S. simulans, but it also lacked a number of genes present both in S. agnetis and S. chromogenes. The type of mastitis was not associated with any specific virulence gene profile. It seems that the virulence gene profiles or cumulative number of different virulence genes are not directly associated with the type of mastitis (clinical or subclinical, indicating that host derived factors such as the immune status play a pivotal role in the manifestation of mastitis.

  1. ArgO145, a Stx2a prophage of a bovine O145 : H-STEC strain, is closely related to phages of virulent human strains

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Krüger, A; Burgán, J; Friedrich, A W; Jwa, Rossen; Pma, Lucchesi

    Shiga toxins (Stx) are the main virulence factor of a pathogroup of Escherichia coli strains that cause severe human diseases. These toxins are encoded in prophages (Stx prophages), and generally their expression depends on prophage induction. Several studies have reported high diversity among both

  2. Complete genome sequence of the Pectobacterium carotovorum subsp. carotovorum virulent bacteriophage PM1.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lim, Jeong-A; Shin, Hakdong; Lee, Dong Hwan; Han, Sang-Wook; Lee, Ju-Hoon; Ryu, Sangryeol; Heu, Sunggi

    2014-08-01

    PM1, a novel virulent bacteriophage that infects Pectobacterium carotovorum subsp. carotovorum, was isolated. Its morphological features were examined by electron microscopy, which indicated that this phage belongs to the family Myoviridae. It has a 55,098-bp genome, including a 2,665-bp terminal repeat. A total of 63 open reading frames (ORFs) were predicted, but only 20 ORFs possessed homology with functional proteins. There is one tRNA coding region, and the GC-content of the genome is 44.9 %. Most ORFs in bacteriophage PM1 showed high homology to enterobacteria phage ΦEcoM-GJ1 and Erwinia phage νB EamM-Y2. Like these bacteriophages, PM1 encodes an RNA polymerase, which is a hallmark of T7-like phages. There is no integrase or repressor, suggesting that PM1 is a virulent bacteriophage.

  3. Norlichexanthone Reduces Virulence Gene Expression and Biofilm Formation in Staphylococcus aureus

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Baldry, Mara; Nielsen, Anita; Bojer, Martin S.

    2016-01-01

    Staphylococcus aureus is a serious human pathogen and antibiotic resistant, community-associated strains, such as the methicillin resistant S. aureus (MRSA) strain USA300, continue to spread. To avoid resistance, anti-virulence therapy has been proposed where toxicity is targeted rather than...... viability. Previously we have shown that norlichexanthone, a small non-reduced tricyclic polyketide produced by fungi and lichens, reduces expression of hla encoding α-hemolysin as well as the regulatory RNAIII of the agr quorum sensing system in S. aureus 8325-4. The aim of the present study was to further...... SaeRS system. Our data show that norlichexanthone treatment reduces expression of key virulence factors in CA-MRSA strain USA300 via AgrA binding and represses biofilm formation....

  4. The Complete Genome Sequence of the Fish Pathogen Tenacibaculum maritimum Provides Insights into Virulence Mechanisms

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David Pérez-Pascual

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available Tenacibaculum maritimum is a devastating bacterial pathogen of wild and farmed marine fish with a broad host range and a worldwide distribution. We report here the complete genome sequence of the T. maritimum type strain NCIMB 2154T. The genome consists of a 3,435,971-base pair circular chromosome with 2,866 predicted protein-coding genes. Genes encoding the biosynthesis of exopolysaccharides, the type IX secretion system, iron uptake systems, adhesins, hemolysins, proteases, and glycoside hydrolases were identified. They are likely involved in the virulence process including immune escape, invasion, colonization, destruction of host tissues, and nutrient scavenging. Among the predicted virulence factors, type IX secretion-mediated and cell-surface exposed proteins were identified including an atypical sialidase, a sphingomyelinase and a chondroitin AC lyase which activities were demonstrated in vitro.

  5. Differences in the stability of the plasmids of Yersinia pestis cultures in vitro: impact on virulence

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    TC Leal-Balbino

    2004-11-01

    Full Text Available Plasmid and chromosomal genes encode determinants of virulence for Yersinia pestis, the causative agent of plague. However, in vitro, Y. pestis genome is very plastic and several changes have been described. To evaluate the alterations in the plasmid content of the cultures in vitro and the impact of the alterations to their pathogenicity, three Y. pestis isolates were submitted to serial subculture, analysis of the plasmid content, and testing for the presence of characteristic genes in each plasmid of colonies selected after subculture. Different results were obtained with each strain. The plasmid content of one of them was shown to be stable; no apparent alteration was produced through 32 subcultures. In the other two strains, several alterations were observed. LD50 in mice of the parental strains and the derived cultures with different plasmid content were compared. No changes in the virulence plasmid content could be specifically correlated with changes in the LD50.

  6. Draft genome sequence of Actinotignum schaalii DSM 15541T: Genetic insights into the lifestyle, cell fitness and virulence.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Atteyet F Yassin

    Full Text Available The permanent draft genome sequence of Actinotignum schaalii DSM 15541T is presented. The annotated genome includes 2,130,987 bp, with 1777 protein-coding and 58 rRNA-coding genes. Genome sequence analysis revealed absence of genes encoding for: components of the PTS systems, enzymes of the TCA cycle, glyoxylate shunt and gluconeogensis. Genomic data revealed that A. schaalii is able to oxidize carbohydrates via glycolysis, the nonoxidative pentose phosphate and the Entner-Doudoroff pathways. Besides, the genome harbors genes encoding for enzymes involved in the conversion of pyruvate to lactate, acetate and ethanol, which are found to be the end products of carbohydrate fermentation. The genome contained the gene encoding Type I fatty acid synthase required for de novo FAS biosynthesis. The plsY and plsX genes encoding the acyltransferases necessary for phosphatidic acid biosynthesis were absent from the genome. The genome harbors genes encoding enzymes responsible for isoprene biosynthesis via the mevalonate (MVA pathway. Genes encoding enzymes that confer resistance to reactive oxygen species (ROS were identified. In addition, A. schaalii harbors genes that protect the genome against viral infections. These include restriction-modification (RM systems, type II toxin-antitoxin (TA, CRISPR-Cas and abortive infection system. A. schaalii genome also encodes several virulence factors that contribute to adhesion and internalization of this pathogen such as the tad genes encoding proteins required for pili assembly, the nanI gene encoding exo-alpha-sialidase, genes encoding heat shock proteins and genes encoding type VII secretion system. These features are consistent with anaerobic and pathogenic lifestyles. Finally, resistance to ciprofloxacin occurs by mutation in chromosomal genes that encode the subunits of DNA-gyrase (GyrA and topisomerase IV (ParC enzymes, while resistant to metronidazole was due to the frxA gene, which encodes NADPH

  7. Correlation between Group B Streptococcal Genotypes, Their Antimicrobial Resistance Profiles, and Virulence Genes among Pregnant Women in Lebanon

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Antoine Hannoun

    2009-01-01

    Full Text Available The antimicrobial susceptibility profiles of 76 Streptococcus agalactiae (Group B Streptococci [GBS] isolates from vaginal specimens of pregnant women near term were correlated to their genotypes generated by Random Amplified Polymorphic DNA analysis and their virulence factors encoding genes cylE, lmb, scpB, rib, and bca by PCR. Based on the distribution of the susceptibility patterns, six profiles were generated. RAPD analysis detected 7 clusters of genotypes. The cylE gene was present in 99% of the isolates, the lmb in 96%, scpB in 94.7%, rib in 33%, and bca in 56.5% of isolates. The isolates demonstrated a significant correlation between antimicrobial resistance and genotype clusters denoting the distribution of particular clones with different antimicrobial resistance profiles, entailing the practice of caution in therapeutic options. All virulence factors encoding genes were detected in all seven genotypic clusters with rib and bca not coexisting in the same genome.

  8. Comparison of Antibiotic Resistance and Virulence Factors among Escherichia coli Isolated from Conventional and Free-Range Poultry

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vanessa L. Koga

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Microbiological contamination in commercial poultry production has caused concerns for human health because of both the presence of pathogenic microorganisms and the increase in antimicrobial resistance in bacterial strains that can cause treatment failure of human infections. The aim of our study was to analyze the profile of antimicrobial resistance and virulence factors of E. coli isolates from chicken carcasses obtained from different farming systems (conventional and free-range poultry. A total of 156 E. coli strains were isolated and characterized for genes encoding virulence factors described in extraintestinal pathogenic E. coli (ExPEC. Antimicrobial susceptibility testing was performed for 15 antimicrobials, and strains were confirmed as extended spectrum of β-lactamases- (ESBLs- producing E. coli by phenotypic and genotypic tests. The results indicated that strains from free-range poultry have fewer virulence factors than strains from conventional poultry. Strains from conventionally raised chickens had a higher frequency of antimicrobial resistance for all antibiotics tested and also exhibited genes encoding ESBL and AmpC, unlike free-range poultry isolates, which did not. Group 2 CTX-M and CIT were the most prevalent ESBL and AmpC genes, respectively. The farming systems of poultries can be related with the frequency of virulence factors and resistance to antimicrobials in bacteria.

  9. Modulation of Replicative Lifespan in Cryptococcus neoformans: Implications for Virulence

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bouklas, Tejas; Jain, Neena; Fries, Bettina C.

    2017-01-01

    The fungal pathogen, Cryptococcus neoformans, has been shown to undergo replicative aging. Old cells are characterized by advanced generational age and phenotypic changes that appear to mediate enhanced resistance to host and antifungal-based killing. As a consequence of this age-associated resilience, old cells accumulate during chronic infection. Based on these findings, we hypothesized that shifting the generational age of a pathogenic yeast population would alter its vulnerability to the host and affect its virulence. SIR2 is a well-conserved histone deacetylase, and a pivotal target for the development of anti-aging drugs. We tested its effect on C. neoformans’ replicative lifespan (RLS). First, a mutant C. neoformans strain (sir2Δ) was generated, and confirmed a predicted shortened RLS in sir2Δ cells consistent with its known role in aging. Next, RLS analysis showed that treatment of C. neoformans with Sir2p-agonists resulted in a significantly prolonged RLS, whereas treatment with a Sir2p-antagonist shortened RLS. RLS modulating effects were dependent on SIR2 and not observed in sir2Δ cells. Because SIR2 loss resulted in a slightly impaired fitness, effects of genetic RLS modulation on virulence could not be compared with wild type cells. Instead we chose to chemically modulate RLS, and investigated the effect of Sir2p modulating drugs on C. neoformans cells in a Galleria mellonella infection model. Consistent with our hypothesis that shifts in the generational age of the infecting yeast population alters its vulnerability to host cells, we observed decreased virulence of C. neoformans in the Galleria host when RLS was prolonged by treatment with Sir2p agonists. In contrast, treatment with a Sir2p antagonist, which shortens RLS enhanced virulence in Galleria. In addition, combination of Sir2p agonists with antifungal therapy enhanced the antifungal’s effect. Importantly, no difference in virulence was observed with drug treatment when sir2Δ cells

  10. The capsule is a virulence determinant in the pathogenesis of Pasteurella multocida M1404 (B:2).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boyce, J D; Adler, B

    2000-06-01

    Capsules from a range of pathogenic bacteria are key virulence determinants, and the capsule has been implicated in virulence in Pasteurella multocida. We have previously identified and determined the nucleotide sequence of the P. multocida M1404 (B:2) capsule biosynthetic locus (J. D. Boyce, J. Y. Chung, and B. Adler, Vet. Microbiol. 72:121-134, 2000). The cap locus consists of 15 genes, which can be grouped into three functional regions. Regions 1 and 3 contain genes proposed to encode proteins involved in capsule export, and region 2 contains genes proposed to encode proteins involved in polysaccharide biosynthesis. In order to construct a mutant impaired in capsule export, the final gene of region 1, cexA, was disrupted by insertion of a tetracycline resistance cassette by allelic replacement. The genotype of the tet(M) OmegacexA mutant was confirmed by Southern hybridization and PCR. The acapsular phenotype was confirmed by immunofluorescence, and the strain could be complemented and returned to capsule production by the presence of a cloned uninterrupted copy of cexA. Wild-type, mutant, and complemented strains were tested for virulence by intraperitoneal challenge of mice; the presence of the capsule was shown to be a crucial virulence determinant. Following intraperitoneal challenge of mice, the acapsular bacteria were removed efficiently from the blood, spleen, and liver, while wild-type bacteria multiplied rapidly. Acapsular bacteria were readily taken up by murine peritoneal macrophages, but wild-type bacteria were significantly resistant to phagocytosis. Both wild-type and acapsular bacteria were resistant to complement in bovine and murine serum.

  11. NMDA receptors and memory encoding.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morris, Richard G M

    2013-11-01

    It is humbling to think that 30 years have passed since the paper by Collingridge, Kehl and McLennan showing that one of Jeff Watkins most interesting compounds, R-2-amino-5-phosphonopentanoate (d-AP5), blocked the induction of long-term potentiation in vitro at synapses from area CA3 of the hippocampus to CA1 without apparent effect on baseline synaptic transmission (Collingridge et al., 1983). This dissociation was one of the key triggers for an explosion of interest in glutamate receptors, and much has been discovered since that collectively contributes to our contemporary understanding of glutamatergic synapses - their biophysics and subunit composition, of the agonists and antagonists acting on them, and their diverse functions in different networks of the brain and spinal cord. It can be fairly said that Collingridge et al.'s (1983) observation was the stimulus that has led, on the one hand, to structural biological work at the atomic scale describing the key features of NMDA receptors that enables their coincidence function to happen; and, on the other, to work with whole animals investigating the contributions that calcium signalling via this receptor can have on rhythmical activities controlled by spinal circuits, memory encoding in the hippocampus (the topic of this article), visual cortical plasticity, sensitization in pain, and other functions. In this article, I lay out how my then interest in long-term potentiation (LTP) as a model of memory enabled me to recognise the importance of Collingridge et al.'s discovery - and how I and my colleagues endeavoured to take things forward in the area of learning and memory. This is in some respects a personal story, and I tell it as such. The idea that NMDA receptor activation is essential for memory encoding, though not for storage, took time to develop and to be accepted. Along the way, there have been confusions, challenges, and surprises surrounding the idea that activation of NMDA receptors can

  12. Regulation of Yersina pestis Virulence by AI-2 Mediated Quorum Sensing

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Segelke, B; Hok, S; Lao, V; Corzett, M; Garcia, E

    2010-03-29

    The proposed research was motivated by an interest in understanding Y. pestis virulence mechanisms and bacteria cell-cell communication. It is expected that a greater understanding of virulence mechanisms will ultimately lead to biothreat countermeasures and novel therapeutics. Y. pestis is the etiological agent of plague, the most devastating disease in human history. Y. pestis infection has a high mortality rate and a short incubation before mortality. There is no widely available and effective vaccine for Y. pestis and multi-drug resistant strains are emerging. Y. pestis is a recognized biothreat agent based on the wide distribution of the bacteria in research laboratories around the world and on the knowledge that methods exist to produce and aerosolize large amounts of bacteria. We hypothesized that cell-cell communication via signaling molecules, or quorum sensing, by Y. pestis is important for the regulation of virulence factor gene expression during host invasion, though a causative link had never been established. Quorum sensing is a mode of intercellular communication which enables orchestration of gene expression for many bacteria as a function of population density and available evidence suggests there may be a link between quorum sensing and regulation of Y. pesits virulence. Several pathogenic bacteria have been shown to regulate expression of virulence factor genes, including genes encoding type III secretion, via quorum sensing. The Y. pestis genome encodes several cell-cell signaling pathways and the interaction of at least three of these are thought to be involved in one or more modes of host invasion. Furthermore, Y. pestis gene expression array studies carried out at LLNL have established a correlation between expression of known virulence factors and genes involved in processing of the AI-2 quorum sensing signal. This was a basic research project that was intended to provide new insights into bacterial intercellular communication and how it is

  13. Specific DNA Binding of a Potential Transcriptional Regulator, Inosine 5′-Monophosphate Dehydrogenase-Related Protein VII, to the Promoter Region of a Methyl Coenzyme M Reductase I-Encoding Operon Retrieved from Methanothermobacter thermautotrophicus Strain ΔH▿

    OpenAIRE

    Shinzato, Naoya; Enoki, Miho; Sato, Hiroaki; Nakamura, Kohei; Matsui, Toru; Kamagata, Yoichi

    2008-01-01

    Two methyl coenzyme M reductases (MCRs) encoded by the mcr and mrt operons of the hydrogenotrophic methanogen Methanothermobacter thermautotrophicus ΔH are expressed in response to H2 availability. In the present study, cis elements and trans-acting factors responsible for the gene expression of MCRs were investigated by using electrophoretic mobility shift assay (EMSA) and affinity particle purification. A survey of their operator regions by EMSA with protein extracts from mrt-expressing cul...

  14. Proteolysis of virulence regulator ToxR is associated with entry of Vibrio cholerae into a dormant state.

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    Salvador Almagro-Moreno

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available Vibrio cholerae O1 is a natural inhabitant of aquatic environments and causes the diarrheal disease, cholera. Two of its primary virulence regulators, TcpP and ToxR, are localized in the inner membrane. TcpP is encoded on the Vibrio Pathogenicity Island (VPI, a horizontally acquired mobile genetic element, and functions primarily in virulence gene regulation. TcpP has been shown to undergo regulated intramembrane proteolysis (RIP in response to environmental conditions that are unfavorable for virulence gene expression. ToxR is encoded in the ancestral genome and is present in non-pathogenic strains of V. cholerae, indicating it has roles outside of the human host. In this study, we show that ToxR undergoes RIP in V. cholerae in response to nutrient limitation at alkaline pH, a condition that occurs during the stationary phase of growth. This process involves the site-2 protease RseP (YaeL, and is dependent upon the RpoE-mediated periplasmic stress response, as deletion mutants for the genes encoding these two proteins cannot proteolyze ToxR under nutrient limitation at alkaline pH. We determined that the loss of ToxR, genetically or by proteolysis, is associated with entry of V. cholerae into a dormant state in which the bacterium is normally found in the aquatic environment called viable but nonculturable (VBNC. Strains that can proteolyze ToxR, or do not encode it, lose culturability, experience a change in morphology associated with cells in VBNC, yet remain viable under nutrient limitation at alkaline pH. On the other hand, mutant strains that cannot proteolyze ToxR remain culturable and maintain the morphology of cells in an active state of growth. Overall, our findings provide a link between the proteolysis of a virulence regulator and the entry of a pathogen into an environmentally persistent state.

  15. Phenotypic Analysis and Virulence of Candida albicans LIG4 Mutants

    Science.gov (United States)

    Andaluz, Encarnación; Calderone, Richard; Reyes, Guadalupe; Larriba, Germán

    2001-01-01

    In previous studies, we reported the isolation and preliminary characterization of a DNA ligase-encoding gene of Candida albicans. This gene (LIG4) is the structural and functional homologue of both yeast and human ligase IV, which is involved in nonhomologous end joining (NHEJ) of DNA double-strand breaks. In the present study, we have shown that there are no other LIG4 homologues in C. albicans. In order to study the function of LIG4 in morphogenesis and virulence, we constructed gene deletions. LIG4 transcript levels were reduced in the heterozygote and were completely absent in null strains. Concomitantly, the heterozygote showed a pronounced defect in myceliation, which was slightly greater in the null strain. This was true with several solid and liquid media, such as Spider medium, medium 199, and 2% glucose–1% yeast extract–2% Bacto Peptone, at several pHs. Reintroduction of the wild-type allele into the null mutant partially restored the ability of cells to form hyphae. In agreement with the positive role of LIG4 in morphogenesis, we detected a significant rise in mRNA levels during the morphological transition. LIG4 is not essential for DNA replication or for the repair of DNA damage induced by ionizing radiation or UV light, indicating that these lesions are repaired primarily by homologous recombination. However, our data show that the NHEJ apparatus of C. albicans may control morphogenesis in this diploid organism. In addition, deletion of one or both copies of LIG4 resulted in attenuation of virulence in a murine model of candidiasis. PMID:11119499

  16. A Clostridium difficile Cell Wall Glycopolymer Locus Influences Bacterial Shape, Polysaccharide Production and Virulence.

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    Michele Chu

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available Clostridium difficile is a diarrheagenic pathogen associated with significant mortality and morbidity. While its glucosylating toxins are primary virulence determinants, there is increasing appreciation of important roles for non-toxin factors in C. difficile pathogenesis. Cell wall glycopolymers (CWGs influence the virulence of various pathogens. Five C. difficile CWGs, including PSII, have been structurally characterized, but their biosynthesis and significance in C. difficile infection is unknown. We explored the contribution of a conserved CWG locus to C. difficile cell-surface integrity and virulence. Attempts at disrupting multiple genes in the locus, including one encoding a predicted CWG exporter mviN, were unsuccessful, suggesting essentiality of the respective gene products. However, antisense RNA-mediated mviN downregulation resulted in slight morphology defects, retarded growth, and decreased surface PSII deposition. Two other genes, lcpA and lcpB, with putative roles in CWG anchoring, could be disrupted by insertional inactivation. lcpA- and lcpB- mutants had distinct phenotypes, implying non-redundant roles for the respective proteins. The lcpB- mutant was defective in surface PSII deposition and shedding, and exhibited a remodeled cell surface characterized by elongated and helical morphology, aberrantly-localized cell septae, and an altered surface-anchored protein profile. Both lcpA- and lcpB- strains also displayed heightened virulence in a hamster model of C. difficile disease. We propose that gene products of the C. difficile CWG locus are essential, that they direct the production/assembly of key antigenic surface polysaccharides, and thereby have complex roles in virulence.

  17. Development of genetic tools for in vivo virulence analysis of Streptococcus sanguinis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Turner, Lauren Senty; Das, Sankar; Kanamoto, Taisei; Munro, Cindy L; Kitten, Todd

    2009-08-01

    Completion of the genome sequence of Streptococcus sanguinis SK36 necessitates tools for further characterization of this species. It is often desirable to insert antibiotic resistance markers and other exogenous genes into the chromosome; therefore, we sought to identify a chromosomal site for ectopic expression of foreign genes, and to verify that insertion into this site did not affect important cellular phenotypes. We designed three plasmid constructs for insertion of erm, aad9 or tetM resistance determinants into a genomic region encoding only a small (65 aa) hypothetical protein. To determine whether this insertion affected important cellular properties, SK36 and its erythromycin-resistant derivative, JFP36, were compared for: (i) growth in vitro, (ii) genetic competence, (iii) biofilm formation and (iv) virulence for endocarditis in the rabbit model of infective endocarditis (IE). The spectinomycin-resistant strain, JFP56, and tetracycline-resistant strain, JFP76, were also tested for virulence in vivo. Insertion of erm did not affect growth, competence or biofilm development of JFP36. Recovery of bacteria from heart valves of co-inoculated rabbits was similar to wild-type for JFP36, JFP56 and JFP76, indicating that IE virulence was not significantly affected. The capacity for mutant complementation in vivo was explored in an avirulent ssaB mutant background. Expression of ssaB from its predicted promoter in the target region restored IE virulence. Thus, the chromosomal site utilized is a good candidate for further manipulations of S. sanguinis. In addition, the resistant strains developed may be further applied as controls to facilitate screening for virulence factors in vivo.

  18. Virulence evolution of the human pathogen Neisseria meningitidis by recombination in the core and accessory genome.

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    Biju Joseph

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Neisseria meningitidis is a naturally transformable, facultative pathogen colonizing the human nasopharynx. Here, we analyze on a genome-wide level the impact of recombination on gene-complement diversity and virulence evolution in N. meningitidis. We combined comparative genome hybridization using microarrays (mCGH and multilocus sequence typing (MLST of 29 meningococcal isolates with computational comparison of a subset of seven meningococcal genome sequences. PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We found that lateral gene transfer of minimal mobile elements as well as prophages are major forces shaping meningococcal population structure. Extensive gene content comparison revealed novel associations of virulence with genetic elements besides the recently discovered meningococcal disease associated (MDA island. In particular, we identified an association of virulence with a recently described canonical genomic island termed IHT-E and a differential distribution of genes encoding RTX toxin- and two-partner secretion systems among hyperinvasive and non-hyperinvasive lineages. By computationally screening also the core genome for signs of recombination, we provided evidence that about 40% of the meningococcal core genes are affected by recombination primarily within metabolic genes as well as genes involved in DNA replication and repair. By comparison with the results of previous mCGH studies, our data indicated that genetic structuring as revealed by mCGH is stable over time and highly similar for isolates from different geographic origins. CONCLUSIONS: Recombination comprising lateral transfer of entire genes as well as homologous intragenic recombination has a profound impact on meningococcal population structure and genome composition. Our data support the hypothesis that meningococcal virulence is polygenic in nature and that differences in metabolism might contribute to virulence.

  19. Virulence factors of the Mycobacterium tuberculosis complex

    Science.gov (United States)

    Forrellad, Marina A.; Klepp, Laura I.; Gioffré, Andrea; Sabio y García, Julia; Morbidoni, Hector R.; Santangelo, María de la Paz; Cataldi, Angel A.; Bigi, Fabiana

    2013-01-01

    The Mycobacterium tuberculosis complex (MTBC) consists of closely related species that cause tuberculosis in both humans and animals. This illness, still today, remains to be one of the leading causes of morbidity and mortality throughout the world. The mycobacteria enter the host by air, and, once in the lungs, are phagocytated by macrophages. This may lead to the rapid elimination of the bacillus or to the triggering of an active tuberculosis infection. A large number of different virulence factors have evolved in MTBC members as a response to the host immune reaction. The aim of this review is to describe the bacterial genes/proteins that are essential for the virulence of MTBC species, and that have been demonstrated in an in vivo model of infection. Knowledge of MTBC virulence factors is essential for the development of new vaccines and drugs to help manage the disease toward an increasingly more tuberculosis-free world. PMID:23076359

  20. Distribution of virulence determinants among antimicrobial-resistant and antimicrobial-susceptible Escherichia coli implicated in urinary tract infections.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stephenson, Sam; Brown, P D

    2016-01-01

    Uropathogenic Escherichia coli (UPEC) rely on the correlation of virulence expression with antimicrobial resistance to persist and cause severe urinary tract infections (UTIs). We assessed the virulence pattern and prevalence among UPEC strains susceptible and resistant to multiple antimicrobial classes. A total of 174 non-duplicate UPEC strains from patients with clinically significant UTIs were analysed for susceptibility to aminoglycoside, antifolate, cephalosporin, nitrofuran and quinolone antibiotics for the production of extended-spectrum β-lactamases and for the presence of six virulence determinants encoding adhesins (afimbrial, Type 1 fimbriae, P and S-fimbriae) and toxins (cytotoxic necrotising factor and haemolysin). Relatively high resistance rates to nalidixic acid, ciprofloxacin, cephalothin and trimethoprim-sulfamethoxazole (82%, 78%, 62% and 59%, respectively) were observed. Fourteen distinct patterns were identified for the virulence determinants such as afaBC, cnfI, fimH, hylA, papEF and sfaDE. The toxin gene, cnfI (75.3%), was the second most prevalent marker to the adhesin, fimH (97.1%). The significant association of sfaDE/hylA (P < 0.01) among antimicrobial resistant and susceptible strains was also observed notwithstanding an overall greater occurrence of virulence factors among the latter. This study provides a snapshot of UPEC complexity in Jamaica and highlights the significant clonal heterogeneity among strains. Such outcomes emphasise the need for evidence-based strategies in the effective management and control of UTIs.

  1. Multiple plasmid-borne virulence genes of Clavibacter michiganensis ssp. capsici critical for disease development in pepper.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hwang, In Sun; Oh, Eom-Ji; Kim, Donghyuk; Oh, Chang-Sik

    2018-02-01

    Clavibacter michiganensis ssp. capsici is a Gram-positive plant-pathogenic bacterium causing bacterial canker disease in pepper. Virulence genes and mechanisms of C. michiganensis ssp. capsici in pepper have not yet been studied. To identify virulence genes of C. michiganensis ssp. capsici, comparative genome analyses with C. michiganensis ssp. capsici and its related C. michiganensis subspecies, and functional analysis of its putative virulence genes during infection were performed. The C. michiganensis ssp. capsici type strain PF008 carries one chromosome (3.056 Mb) and two plasmids (39 kb pCM1 Cmc and 145 kb pCM2 Cmc ). The genome analyses showed that this bacterium lacks a chromosomal pathogenicity island and celA gene that are important for disease development by C. michiganensis ssp. michiganensis in tomato, but carries most putative virulence genes in both plasmids. Virulence of pCM1 Cmc -cured C. michiganensis ssp. capsici was greatly reduced compared with the wild-type strain in pepper. The complementation analysis with pCM1 Cmc -located putative virulence genes showed that at least five genes, chpE, chpG, ppaA1, ppaB1 and pelA1, encoding serine proteases or pectate lyase contribute to disease development in pepper. In conclusion, C. michiganensis ssp. capsici has a unique genome structure, and its multiple plasmid-borne genes play critical roles in virulence in pepper, either separately or together. © 2017 The Authors. New Phytologist © 2017 New Phytologist Trust.

  2. Glucose starvation boosts Entamoeba histolytica virulence.

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    Ayala Tovy

    2011-08-01

    Full Text Available The unicellular parasite, Entamoeba histolytica, is exposed to numerous adverse conditions, such as nutrient deprivation, during its life cycle stages in the human host. In the present study, we examined whether the parasite virulence could be influenced by glucose starvation (GS. The migratory behaviour of the parasite and its capability to kill mammalian cells and to lyse erythrocytes is strongly enhanced following GS. In order to gain insights into the mechanism underlying the GS boosting effects on virulence, we analyzed differences in protein expression levels in control and glucose-starved trophozoites, by quantitative proteomic analysis. We observed that upstream regulatory element 3-binding protein (URE3-BP, a transcription factor that modulates E.histolytica virulence, and the lysine-rich protein 1 (KRiP1 which is induced during liver abscess development, are upregulated by GS. We also analyzed E. histolytica membrane fractions and noticed that the Gal/GalNAc lectin light subunit LgL1 is up-regulated by GS. Surprisingly, amoebapore A (Ap-A and cysteine proteinase A5 (CP-A5, two important E. histolytica virulence factors, were strongly down-regulated by GS. While the boosting effect of GS on E. histolytica virulence was conserved in strains silenced for Ap-A and CP-A5, it was lost in LgL1 and in KRiP1 down-regulated strains. These data emphasize the unexpected role of GS in the modulation of E.histolytica virulence and the involvement of KRiP1 and Lgl1 in this phenomenon.

  3. Amino Acid Permeases and Virulence in Cryptococcus neoformans.

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    Kevin Felipe Cruz Martho

    Full Text Available Fungal opportunistic pathogens colonize various environments, from plants and wood to human and animal tissue. Regarding human pathogens, one great challenge during contrasting niche occupation is the adaptation to different conditions, such as temperature, osmolarity, salinity, pressure, oxidative stress and nutritional availability, which may constitute sources of stress that need to be tolerated and overcome. As an opportunistic pathogen, C. neoformans faces exactly these situations during the transition from the environment to the human host, encountering nutritional constraints. Our previous and current research on amino acid biosynthetic pathways indicates that amino acid permeases are regulated by the presence of the amino acids, nitrogen and temperature. Saccharomyces cerevisiae and Candida albicans have twenty-four and twenty-seven genes encoding amino acid permeases, respectively; conversely, they are scarce in number in Basidiomycetes (C. neoformans, Coprinopsis cinerea and Ustilago maydis, where nine to ten permease genes can be found depending on the species. In this study, we have demonstrated that two amino acid permeases are essential for virulence in C. neoformans. Our data showed that C. neoformans uses two global and redundant amino acid permeases, Aap4 and Aap5 to respond correctly to thermal and oxidative stress. Double deletion of these permeases causes growth arrest in C. neoformans at 37°C and in the presence of hydrogen peroxide. The inability to uptake amino acid at a higher temperature and under oxidative stress also led to virulence attenuation in vivo. Our data showed that thermosensitivity caused by the lack of permeases Aap4 and Aap5 can be remedied by alkaline conditions (higher pH and salinity. Permeases Aap4 and Aap5 are also required during fluconazole stress and they are the target of the plant secondary metabolite eugenol, a potent antifungal inhibitor that targets amino acid permeases. In summary, our work

  4. Nitrogen Metabolite Repression of Metabolism and Virulence in the Human Fungal Pathogen Cryptococcus neoformans

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, I. Russel; Chow, Eve W. L.; Morrow, Carl A.; Djordjevic, Julianne T.; Fraser, James A.

    2011-01-01

    Proper regulation of metabolism is essential to maximizing fitness of organisms in their chosen environmental niche. Nitrogen metabolite repression is an example of a regulatory mechanism in fungi that enables preferential utilization of easily assimilated nitrogen sources, such as ammonium, to conserve resources. Here we provide genetic, transcriptional, and phenotypic evidence of nitrogen metabolite repression in the human pathogen Cryptococcus neoformans. In addition to loss of transcriptional activation of catabolic enzyme-encoding genes of the uric acid and proline assimilation pathways in the presence of ammonium, nitrogen metabolite repression also regulates the production of the virulence determinants capsule and melanin. Since GATA transcription factors are known to play a key role in nitrogen metabolite repression, bioinformatic analyses of the C. neoformans genome were undertaken and seven predicted GATA-type genes were identified. A screen of these deletion mutants revealed GAT1, encoding the only global transcription factor essential for utilization of a wide range of nitrogen sources, including uric acid, urea, and creatinine—three predominant nitrogen constituents found in the C. neoformans ecological niche. In addition to its evolutionarily conserved role in mediating nitrogen metabolite repression and controlling the expression of catabolic enzyme and permease-encoding genes, Gat1 also negatively regulates virulence traits, including infectious basidiospore production, melanin formation, and growth at high body temperature (39°–40°). Conversely, Gat1 positively regulates capsule production. A murine inhalation model of cryptococcosis revealed that the gat1Δ mutant is slightly more virulent than wild type, indicating that Gat1 plays a complex regulatory role during infection. PMID:21441208

  5. Identification and Pathogenic Potential of Clinical Bacillus and Paenibacillus Isolates.

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    Francesco Celandroni

    Full Text Available The soil-related Bacillus and Paenibacillus species have increasingly been implicated in various human diseases. Nevertheless, their identification still poses problems in the clinical microbiology laboratory and, with the exception of Bacillus anthracis and Bacillus cereus, little is known on their pathogenicity for humans. In this study, we evaluated the use of matrix-assisted laser desorption-ionization time of flight mass spectrometry (MALDI-TOF MS in the identification of clinical isolates of these genera and conducted genotypic and phenotypic analyses to highlight specific virulence properties. Seventy-five clinical isolates were subjected to biochemical and MALDI-TOF MS identification. 16S rDNA sequencing and supplemental tests were used to solve any discrepancies or failures in the identification results. MALDI-TOF MS significantly outperformed classical biochemical testing for correct species identification and no misidentification was obtained. One third of the collected strains belonged to the B. cereus species, but also Bacillus pumilus and Bacillus subtilis were isolated at high rate. Antimicrobial susceptibility testing showed that all the B. cereus, B. licheniformis, B. simplex, B. mycoides, Paenibacillus glucanolyticus and Paenibacillus lautus isolates are resistant to penicillin. The evaluation of toxin/enzyme secretion, toxin-encoding genes, motility, and biofilm formation revealed that B. cereus displays the highest virulence potential. However, although generally considered nonpathogenic, most of the other species were shown to swim, swarm, produce biofilms, and secrete proteases that can have a role in bacterial virulence. In conclusion, MALDI-TOF MS appears useful for fast and accurate identification of Bacillus and Paenibacillus strains whose virulence properties make them of increasing clinical relevance.

  6. Functional genomic characterization of virulence factors from necrotizing fasciitis-causing strains of Aeromonas hydrophila.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grim, Christopher J; Kozlova, Elena V; Ponnusamy, Duraisamy; Fitts, Eric C; Sha, Jian; Kirtley, Michelle L; van Lier, Christina J; Tiner, Bethany L; Erova, Tatiana E; Joseph, Sandeep J; Read, Timothy D; Shak, Joshua R; Joseph, Sam W; Singletary, Ed; Felland, Tracy; Baze, Wallace B; Horneman, Amy J; Chopra, Ashok K

    2014-07-01

    The genomes of 10 Aeromonas isolates identified and designated Aeromonas hydrophila WI, Riv3, and NF1 to NF4; A. dhakensis SSU; A. jandaei Riv2; and A. caviae NM22 and NM33 were sequenced and annotated. Isolates NF1 to NF4 were from a patient with necrotizing fasciitis (NF). Two environmental isolates (Riv2 and -3) were from the river water from which the NF patient acquired the infection. While isolates NF2 to NF4 were clonal, NF1 was genetically distinct. Outside the conserved core genomes of these 10 isolates, several unique genomic features were identified. The most virulent strains possessed one of the following four virulence factors or a combination of them: cytotoxic enterotoxin, exotoxin A, and type 3 and 6 secretion system effectors AexU and Hcp. In a septicemic-mouse model, SSU, NF1, and Riv2 were the most virulent, while NF2 was moderately virulent. These data correlated with high motility and biofilm formation by the former three isolates. Conversely, in a mouse model of intramuscular infection, NF2 was much more virulent than NF1. Isolates NF2, SSU, and Riv2 disseminated in high numbers from the muscular tissue to the visceral organs of mice, while NF1 reached the liver and spleen in relatively lower numbers on the basis of colony counting and tracking of bioluminescent strains in real time by in vivo imaging. Histopathologically, degeneration of myofibers with significant infiltration of polymorphonuclear cells due to the highly virulent strains was noted. Functional genomic analysis provided data that allowed us to correlate the highly infectious nature of Aeromonas pathotypes belonging to several different species with virulence signatures and their potential ability to cause NF. Copyright © 2014, American Society for Microbiology. All Rights Reserved.

  7. Feeding behaviour of Caenorhabditis elegans is an indicator of Pseudomonas aeruginosa PAO1 virulence

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    Shawn Lewenza

    2014-08-01

    Full Text Available Caenorhabditis elegans is commonly used as an infection model for pathogenesis studies in Pseudomonas aeruginosa. The standard virulence assays rely on the slow and fast killing or paralysis of nematodes but here we developed a behaviour assay to monitor the preferred bacterial food sources of C. elegans. We monitored the food preferences of nematodes fed the wild type PAO1 and mutants in the type III secretion (T3S system, which is a conserved mechanism to inject secreted effectors into the host cell cytosol. A ΔexsEΔpscD mutant defective for type III secretion served as a preferred food source, while an ΔexsE mutant that overexpresses the T3S effectors was avoided. Both food sources were ingested and observed in the gastrointestinal tract. Using the slow killing assay, we showed that the ΔexsEΔpscD had reduced virulence and thus confirmed that preferred food sources are less virulent than the wild type. Next we developed a high throughput feeding behaviour assay with 48 possible food colonies in order to screen a transposon mutant library and identify potential virulence genes. C. elegans identified and consumed preferred food colonies from a grid of 48 choices. The mutants identified as preferred food sources included known virulence genes, as well as novel genes not identified in previous C. elegans infection studies. Slow killing assays were performed and confirmed that several preferred food sources also showed reduced virulence. We propose that C. elegans feeding behaviour can be used as a sensitive indicator of virulence for P. aeruginosa PAO1.

  8. Differential protein accumulations in isolates of the strawberry wilt pathogen Fusarium oxysporum f. sp. fragariae differing in virulence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fang, Xiangling; Barbetti, Martin J

    2014-08-28

    This study was conducted to define differences in Fusarium oxysporum f. sp. fragariae (Fof) isolates with different virulence efficiency to strawberry at the proteome level, in combination with their differences in mycelial growth, conidial production and germination. Comparative proteome analyses revealed substantial differences in mycelial proteomes between Fof isolates, where the 54 differentially accumulated protein spots were consistently over-accumulated or exclusively in the highly virulent isolate. These protein spots were identified through MALDI-TOF/TOF mass spectrometry analyses, and the identified proteins were mainly related to primary and protein metabolism, antioxidation, electron transport, cell cycle and transcription based on their putative functions. Proteins of great potential as Fof virulence factors were those involved in ubiquitin/proteasome-mediated protein degradation and reactive oxygen species detoxification; the hydrolysis-related protein haloacid dehalogenase superfamily hydrolase; 3,4-dihydroxy-2-butanone 4-phosphate synthase associated with riboflavin biosynthesis; and those exclusive to the highly virulent isolate. In addition, post-translational modifications may also make an important contribution to Fof virulence. F. oxysporum f. sp. fragariae (Fof), the causal agent of Fusarium wilt in strawberry, is a serious threat to commercial strawberry production worldwide. However, factors and mechanisms contributing to Fof virulence remained unknown. This study provides knowledge of the molecular basis for the differential expression of virulence in Fof, allowing new possibilities towards developing alternative and more effective strategies to manage Fusarium wilt. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  9. Countermeasure development for Rift Valley fever: deletion, modification or targeting of major virulence factor NSs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lihoradova, Olga; Ikegami, Tetsuro

    2014-01-01

    Rift Valley fever (RVF) is a mosquito-borne zoonotic disease characterized by a high rate of abortion in ruminants, and febrile illness, hemorrhagic fever, retinitis and encephalitis in humans. RVF is caused by the RVF virus (RVFV), belonging to the genus Phlebovirus of the family Bunyaviridae . RVFV encodes a major virulence factor, NSs , which is dispensable for viral replication, yet required for evasion of host innate immune responses. RVFV NSs inhibits host gene upregulation at the transcriptional level, while promoting viral translation in the cytoplasm. In this article, we summarize the virology and pathology of RVF, and countermeasure development for RVF, with emphasis on NSs function and applications.

  10. Targeted Disruption of Nonribosomal Peptide Synthetase pes3 Augments the Virulence of Aspergillus fumigatus

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    O'Hanlon, Karen A.; Cairns, Timothy; Stack, Deirdre

    2011-01-01

    metabolite profiling revealed that Pes3 does not produce a secreted or intracellularly stored NRP in A. fumigatus. Macrophage infections and histological analysis of infected murine tissue indicate that Δpes3 heightened virulence appears to be mediated by aberrant innate immune recognition of the fungus....... Proteome alterations in A. fumigatus Δpes3 strongly suggest impaired germination capacity. Uniquely, our data strongly indicate a structural role for the Pes3-encoded NRP, a finding that appears to be novel for an NRP synthetase....

  11. Chromosomal islands of Streptococcus pyogenes and related streptococci: molecular switches for survival and virulence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nguyen, Scott V; McShan, William M

    2014-01-01

    Streptococcus pyogenes is a significant pathogen of humans, annually causing over 700,000,000 infections and 500,000 deaths. Virulence in S. pyogenes is closely linked to mobile genetic elements like phages and chromosomal islands (CI). S. pyogenes phage-like chromosomal islands (SpyCI) confer a complex mutator phenotype on their host. SpyCI integrate into the 5' end of DNA mismatch repair (MMR) gene mutL, which also disrupts downstream operon genes lmrP, ruvA, and tag. During early logarithmic growth, SpyCI excise from the bacterial chromosome and replicate as episomes, relieving the mutator phenotype. As growth slows and the cells enter stationary phase, SpyCI reintegrate into the chromosome, again silencing the MMR operon. This system creates a unique growth-dependent and reversible mutator phenotype. Additional CI using the identical attachment site in mutL have been identified in related species, including Streptococcus dysgalactiae subsp. equisimilis, Streptococcus anginosus, Streptococcus intermedius, Streptococcus parauberis, and Streptococcus canis. These CI have small genomes, which range from 13 to 20 kB, conserved integrase and DNA replication genes, and no identifiable genes encoding capsid proteins. SpyCI may employ a helper phage for packaging and dissemination in a fashion similar to the Staphylococcus aureus pathogenicity islands (SaPI). Outside of the core replication and integration genes, SpyCI and related CI show considerable diversity with the presence of many indels that may contribute to the host cell phenotype or fitness. SpyCI are a subset of a larger family of streptococcal CI who potentially regulate the expression of other host genes. The biological and phylogenetic analysis of streptococcal chromosomal islands provides important clues as to how these chromosomal islands help S. pyogenes and other streptococcal species persist in human populations in spite of antibiotic therapy and immune challenges.

  12. Streptomyces coelicolor encodes a urate-responsive transcriptional regulator with homology to PecS from plant pathogens.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huang, Hao; Mackel, Brian J; Grove, Anne

    2013-11-01

    Many transcriptional regulators control gene activity by responding to specific ligands. Members of the multiple-antibiotic resistance regulator (MarR) family of transcriptional regulators feature prominently in this regard, and they frequently function as repressors in the absence of their cognate ligands. Plant pathogens such as Dickeya dadantii encode a MarR homolog named PecS that controls expression of a gene encoding the efflux pump PecM in addition to other virulence genes. We report here that the soil bacterium Streptomyces coelicolor also encodes a PecS homolog (SCO2647) that regulates a pecM gene (SCO2646). S. coelicolor PecS, which exists as a homodimer, binds the intergenic region between pecS and pecM genes with high affinity. Several potential PecS binding sites were found in this intergenic region. The binding of PecS to its target DNA can be efficiently attenuated by the ligand urate, which also quenches the intrinsic fluorescence of PecS, indicating a direct interaction between urate and PecS. In vivo measurement of gene expression showed that activity of pecS and pecM genes is significantly elevated after exposure of S. coelicolor cultures to urate. These results indicate that S. coelicolor PecS responds to the ligand urate by attenuated DNA binding in vitro and upregulation of gene activity in vivo. Since production of urate is associated with generation of reactive oxygen species by xanthine dehydrogenase, we propose that PecS functions under conditions of oxidative stress.

  13. Comparative Transcriptome Analysis of Salivary Glands of Two Populations of Rice Brown Planthopper, Nilaparvata lugens, That Differ in Virulence

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Hongdan; Ye, Wenfeng; Li, Shaohui; Lou, Yonggen

    2013-01-01

    Background The brown planthopper (BPH), Nilaparvata lugens (Stål), a destructive rice pest in Asia, can quickly overcome rice resistance by evolving new virulent populations. Herbivore saliva plays an important role in plant–herbivore interactions, including in plant defense and herbivore virulence. However, thus far little is known about BPH saliva at the molecular level, especially its role in virulence and BPH–rice interaction. Methodology/Principal Findings Using cDNA amplification in combination with Illumina short-read sequencing technology, we sequenced the salivary-gland transcriptomes of two BPH populations with different virulence; the populations were derived from rice variety TN1 (TN1 population) and Mudgo (M population). In total, 37,666 and 38,451 unigenes were generated from the salivary glands of these populations, respectively. When combined, a total of 43,312 unigenes were obtained, about 18 times more than the number of expressed sequence tags previously identified from these glands. Gene ontology annotations and KEGG orthology classifications indicated that genes related to metabolism, binding and transport were significantly active in the salivary glands. A total of 352 genes were predicted to encode secretory proteins, and some might play important roles in BPH feeding and BPH–rice interactions. Comparative analysis of the transcriptomes of the two populations revealed that the genes related to ‘metabolism,’ ‘digestion and absorption,’ and ‘salivary secretion’ might be associated with virulence. Moreover, 67 genes encoding putative secreted proteins were differentially expressed between the two populations, suggesting these genes may contribute to the change in virulence. Conclusions/Significance This study was the first to compare the salivary-gland transcriptomes of two BPH populations having different virulence traits and to find genes that may be related to this difference. Our data provide a rich molecular resource for

  14. Amphibian antimicrobial peptide fallaxin analogue FL9 affects virulence gene expression and DNA replication in Staphylococcus aureus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gottschalk, Sanne; Gottlieb, Caroline T; Vestergaard, Martin; Hansen, Paul R; Gram, Lone; Ingmer, Hanne; Thomsen, Line E

    2015-12-01

    The rapid rise in antibiotic-resistant pathogens is causing increased health concerns, and consequently there is an urgent need for novel antimicrobial agents. Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs), which have been isolated from a wide range of organisms, represent a very promising class of novel antimicrobials. In the present study, the analogue FL9, based on the amphibian AMP fallaxin, was studied to elucidate its mode of action and antibacterial activity against the human pathogen Staphylococcus aureus. Our data showed that FL9 may have a dual mode of action against S. aureus. At concentrations around the MIC, FL9 bound DNA, inhibited DNA synthesis and induced the SOS DNA damage response, whereas at concentrations above the MIC the interaction between S. aureus and FL9 led to membrane disruption. The antibacterial activity of the peptide was maintained over a wide range of NaCl and MgCl(2) concentrations and at alkaline pH, while it was compromised by acidic pH and exposure to serum. Furthermore, at subinhibitory concentrations of FL9, S. aureus responded by increasing the expression of two major virulence factor genes, namely the regulatory rnaIII and hla, encoding α-haemolysin. In addition, the S. aureus-encoded natural tolerance mechanisms included peptide cleavage and the addition of positive charge to the cell surface, both of which minimized the antimicrobial activity of FL9. Our results add new information about FL9 and its effect on S. aureus, which may aid in the future development of analogues with improved therapeutic potential.

  15. Molecular characterization of podoviral bacteriophages virulent for Clostridium perfringens and their comparison with members of the Picovirinae.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nikolay V Volozhantsev

    Full Text Available Clostridium perfringens is a Gram-positive, spore-forming anaerobic bacterium responsible for human food-borne disease as well as non-food-borne human, animal and poultry diseases. Because bacteriophages or their gene products could be applied to control bacterial diseases in a species-specific manner, they are potential important alternatives to antibiotics. Consequently, poultry intestinal material, soil, sewage and poultry processing drainage water were screened for virulent bacteriophages that lysed C. perfringens. Two bacteriophages, designated ΦCPV4 and ΦZP2, were isolated in the Moscow Region of the Russian Federation while another closely related virus, named ΦCP7R, was isolated in the southeastern USA. The viruses were identified as members of the order Caudovirales in the family Podoviridae with short, non-contractile tails of the C1 morphotype. The genomes of the three bacteriophages were 17.972, 18.078 and 18.397 kbp respectively; encoding twenty-six to twenty-eight ORF's with inverted terminal repeats and an average GC content of 34.6%. Structural proteins identified by mass spectrometry in the purified ΦCP7R virion included a pre-neck/appendage with putative lyase activity, major head, tail, connector/upper collar, lower collar and a structural protein with putative lysozyme-peptidase activity. All three podoviral bacteriophage genomes encoded a predicted N-acetylmuramoyl-L-alanine amidase and a putative stage V sporulation protein. Each putative amidase contained a predicted bacterial SH3 domain at the C-terminal end of the protein, presumably involved with binding the C. perfringens cell wall. The predicted DNA polymerase type B protein sequences were closely related to other members of the Podoviridae including Bacillus phage Φ29. Whole-genome comparisons supported this relationship, but also indicated that the Russian and USA viruses may be unique members of the sub-family Picovirinae.

  16. Genotypic and Phenotypic Diversity of Cryptococcus gattii VGII Clinical Isolates and Its Impact on Virulence

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vanessa A. Barcellos

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available The Cryptococcus gattii species complex harbors the main etiological agents of cryptococcosis in immunocompetent patients. C. gattii molecular type VGII predominates in the north and northeastern regions of Brazil, leading to high morbidity and mortality rates. C. gattii VGII isolates have a strong clinical relevance and phenotypic variations. These phenotypic variations among C. gattii species complex isolates suggest that some strains are more virulent than others, but little information is available related to the pathogenic properties of those strains. In this study, we analyzed some virulence determinants of C. gattii VGII strains (CG01, CG02, and CG03 isolated from patients in the state of Piauí, Brazil. The C. gattii R265 VGIIa strain, which was isolated from the Vancouver outbreak, differed from C. gattii CG01, CG02 and CG03 isolates (also classified as VGII when analyzed the capsular dimensions, melanin production, urease activity, as well as the glucuronoxylomannan (GXM secretion. Those differences directly reflected in their virulence potential. In addition, CG02 displayed higher virulence compared to R265 (VGIIa strain in a cryptococcal murine model of infection. Lastly, we examined the genotypic diversity of these strains through Multilocus Sequence Type (MLST and one new subtype was described for the CG02 isolate. This study confirms the presence and the phenotypic and genotypic diversity of highly virulent strains in the Northeast region of Brazil.

  17. Plasmid transferability of KPC into a virulent K2 serotype Klebsiella pneumoniae.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Siu, Leung-Kei Kristopher; Huang, David B; Chiang, Tom

    2014-03-31

    KPC-producing carbapenem-resistant Klebsiella pneumoniae (CRKP) infections are associated with high mortality; however, their virulence determinants are not well defined. We investigated the virulence and plasmid transferability among KPC-containing K. pneumoniae isolates. KPC-2 and -3 were successfully conjugated and retained by a virulent K2 K. pneumoniae recipient isolate. Antimicrobial susceptibility testing showed KPC-2 and -3 donor strains were resistant to more than four classes of antibiotics while the K2 isolate was only initially resistant to ampicillin. After conjugation of KPC-2 and -3, the K2 K. pneumoniae transconjugants became resistant to all beta-lactams. Additionally, the KPC K2 K. pneumoniae transconjugants continued to retain its high serum resistance and murine lethality. Conjugation and retainment of KPC by virulent K2 K. pneumoniae and the ability of the tranconjugants to maintain its high serum resistance and murine lethality after conjugation was demonstrated in this study. These findings are concerning for the potential of KPC-like genes to disseminate among virulent K. pneumoniae isolates.

  18. Microarray Evaluation of Antimicrobial Resistance and Virulence of Escherichia coli Isolates from Portuguese Poultry

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nuno Mendonça

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available The presence of antimicrobial resistance and virulence factors of 174 Escherichia coli strains isolated from healthy Portuguese Gallus gallus was evaluated. Resistance profiles were determined against 33 antimicrobials by microbroth dilution. Resistance was prevalent for tetracycline (70% and ampicillin (63%. Extended-spectrum beta-lactamase (ESBL phenotype was observed in 18% of the isolates. Multidrug resistance was found in 56% of isolates. A subset of 74 isolates were screened by DNA microarrays for the carriage of 88 antibiotic resistance genes and 62 virulence genes. Overall, 37 different resistance genes were detected. The most common were tet(A (72%, blaTEM (68%, and sul1 (47%, while 21% isolates harbored an ESBL gene (blaCTX-M group 1, group 2, or group 9. Of these, 96% carried the increased serum survival (iss virulence gene, while 89% presented the enterobactin siderophore receptor protein (iroN, 70% the temperature-sensitive hemagglutinin (tsh, and 68% the long polar fimbriae (lpfA virulence genes associated with extraintestinal pathogenic E. coli. In conclusion, prevalence of antibiotic resistant E. coli from the microbiota of Portuguese chickens was high, including to extended spectrum cephalosporins. The majority of isolates seems to have the potential to trigger extraintestinal human infection due to the presence of some virulence genes. However, the absence of genes specific for enteropathogenic E. coli reduces the risk for human intestinal infection.

  19. The highly virulent variola and monkeypox viruses express secreted inhibitors of type I interferon

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fernández de Marco, María del Mar; Alejo, Alí; Hudson, Paul; Damon, Inger K.; Alcami, Antonio

    2010-01-01

    Variola virus (VARV) caused smallpox, one of the most devastating human diseases and the first to be eradicated, but its deliberate release represents a dangerous threat. Virulent orthopoxviruses infecting humans, such as monkeypox virus (MPXV), could fill the niche left by smallpox eradication and the cessation of vaccination. However, immunomodulatory activities and virulence determinants of VARV and MPXV remain largely unexplored. We report the molecular characterization of the VARV- and MPXV-secreted type I interferon-binding proteins, which interact with the cell surface after secretion and prevent type I interferon responses. The proteins expressed in the baculovirus system have been purified, and their interferon-binding properties characterized by surface plasmon resonance. The ability of these proteins to inhibit a broad range of interferons was investigated to identify potential adaptation to the human immune system. Furthermore, we demonstrate by Western blot and activity assays the expression of the type I interferon inhibitor during VARV and MPXV infections. These findings are relevant for the design of new vaccines and therapeutics to smallpox and emergent virulent orthopoxviruses because the type I interferon-binding protein is a major virulence factor in animal models, vaccination with this protein induces protective immunity, and its neutralization prevents disease progression.—Fernández de Marco, M. M., Alejo, A., Hudson, P., Damon, I. K., Alcami, A. The highly virulent variola and monkeypox viruses express secreted inhibitors of type I interferon. PMID:20019241

  20. The Toxin and Virulence Database: A Resource for Signature Development and Analysis of Virulence

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Wolinsky, Murray A

    2004-01-01

    In this joint effort with the University of Alabama at Birmingham, Walter Reed, MITRE and USAMRIID, we are developing a comprehensive database for microbial toxins and virulence factors (www.tvfac.lanl.gov...

  1. Are secondary metabolites dispensable for virulence?

    Science.gov (United States)

    The production of toxins by conidial fungal pathogens and their association with virulence has been assumed to occur in vivo and is widely accepted as dogma, but this association has yet to be definitively proven by either genetic or chemical means. Several studies from our labs have used targeted g...

  2. Mechanisms of disease: Helicobacter pylori virulence factors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yamaoka, Yoshio

    2010-11-01

    Helicobacter pylori plays an essential role in the development of various gastroduodenal diseases; however, only a small proportion of people infected with H. pylori develop these diseases. Some populations that have a high prevalence of H. pylori infection also have a high incidence of gastric cancer (for example, in East Asia), whereas others do not (for example, in Africa and South Asia). Even within East Asia, the incidence of gastric cancer varies (decreasing in the south). H. pylori is a highly heterogeneous bacterium and its virulence varies geographically. Geographic differences in the incidence of gastric cancer can be explained, at least in part, by the presence of different types of H. pylori virulence factor, especially CagA, VacA and OipA. However, it is still unclear why the pathogenicity of H. pylori increased as it migrated from Africa to East Asia during the course of evolution. H. pylori infection is also thought to be involved in the development of duodenal ulcer, which is at the opposite end of the disease spectrum to gastric cancer. This discrepancy can be explained in part by the presence of H. pylori virulence factor DupA. Despite advances in our understanding of the development of H. pylori-related diseases, further work is required to clarify the roles of H. pylori virulence factors.

  3. Efflux inhibitor suppresses Streptococcus mutans virulence properties.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zeng, Huihui; Liu, Jia; Ling, Junqi

    2017-04-01

    It is well established that efflux pumps play important roles in bacterial pathogenicity and efflux inhibitors (EIs) have been proved to be effective in suppressing bacterial virulence properties. However, little is known regarding the EI of Streptococcus mutans, a well-known caries-inducing bacterium. In this study, we identified the EI of S. mutans through ethidium bromide efflux assay and investigated how EI affected S. mutans virulence regarding the cariogenicity and stress response. Results indicated that reserpine, the identified EI, suppressed acid tolerance, mutacin production and transformation efficiency of S. mutans, and modified biofilm architecture and extracellular polysaccharide distribution. Suppressed glycosyltransferase activity was also noted after reserpine exposure. The data from quantitative real-time-PCR demonstrated that reserpine significantly altered the expression profile of quorum-sensing and virulence-associated genes. These findings suggest that reserpine represents a promising adjunct anticariogenic agent in that it suppresses virulence properties of S. mutans. © FEMS 2017. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  4. Microbial virulence and interactions with metals

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    German, N.; Lüthje, Freja Lea; Hao, X.

    2016-01-01

    Transition metals, such as iron, copper, zinc, and manganese play an important role in many bacterial biological processes that add to an overall evolutional fitness of bacteria. They are often involved in regulation of bacterial virulence as a mechanism of host invasion. However, the same transi...

  5. NEW VIRULENCE FACTORS OF STREPTOCOCCUS PNEUMONIAE

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hermans, Peter Wilhelmus Maria; Bootsma, Jeanette Hester; Burghout, Pieter Jan; Kuipers, Oscar; Bijlsma, Johanna Jacoba Elisabeth; Kloosterman, Tomas Gerrit; Andersen, Christian O.

    2011-01-01

    The present invention provides proteins/genes, which are essential for survival, and consequently, for virulence of Streptococcus pneumoniae in vivo, and thus are ideal vaccine candidates for a vaccine preparation against pneumococcal infection. Further, also antibodies against said protein(s) are

  6. Analysing and Comparing Encodability Criteria

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kirstin Peters

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available Encodings or the proof of their absence are the main way to compare process calculi. To analyse the quality of encodings and to rule out trivial or meaningless encodings, they are augmented with quality criteria. There exists a bunch of different criteria and different variants of criteria in order to reason in different settings. This leads to incomparable results. Moreover it is not always clear whether the criteria used to obtain a result in a particular setting do indeed fit to this setting. We show how to formally reason about and compare encodability criteria by mapping them on requirements on a relation between source and target terms that is induced by the encoding function. In particular we analyse the common criteria full abstraction, operational correspondence, divergence reflection, success sensitiveness, and respect of barbs; e.g. we analyse the exact nature of the simulation relation (coupled simulation versus bisimulation that is induced by different variants of operational correspondence. This way we reduce the problem of analysing or comparing encodability criteria to the better understood problem of comparing relations on processes.

  7. Specific DNA binding of a potential transcriptional regulator, inosine 5'-monophosphate dehydrogenase-related protein VII, to the promoter region of a methyl coenzyme m reductase I-encoding operon retrieved from Methanothermobacter thermautotrophicus strain DeltaH.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shinzato, Naoya; Enoki, Miho; Sato, Hiroaki; Nakamura, Kohei; Matsui, Toru; Kamagata, Yoichi

    2008-10-01

    Two methyl coenzyme M reductases (MCRs) encoded by the mcr and mrt operons of the hydrogenotrophic methanogen Methanothermobacter thermautotrophicus DeltaH are expressed in response to H(2) availability. In the present study, cis elements and trans-acting factors responsible for the gene expression of MCRs were investigated by using electrophoretic mobility shift assay (EMSA) and affinity particle purification. A survey of their operator regions by EMSA with protein extracts from mrt-expressing cultures restricted them to 46- and 41-bp-long mcr and mrt upstream regions, respectively. Affinity particle purification of DNA-binding proteins conjugated with putative operator regions resulted in the retrieval of a protein attributed to IMP dehydrogenase-related protein VII (IMPDH VII). IMPDH VII is predicted to have a winged helix-turn-helix DNA-binding motif and two cystathionine beta-synthase domains, and it has been suspected to be an energy-sensing module. EMSA with oligonucleotide probes with unusual sequences showed that the binding site of IMPDH VII mostly overlaps the factor B-responsible element-TATA box of the mcr operon. The results presented here suggest that IMPDH VII encoded by MTH126 is a plausible candidate for the transcriptional regulator of the mcr operon in this methanogen.

  8. Protein kinase A and fungal virulence: a sinister side to a conserved nutrient sensing pathway.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fuller, Kevin K; Rhodes, Judith C

    2012-01-01

    Diverse fungal species are the cause of devastating agricultural and human diseases. As successful pathogenesis is dependent upon the ability of the fungus to adapt to the nutritional and chemical environment of the host, the understanding of signaling pathways required for such adaptation will provide insights into the virulence of these pathogens and the potential identification of novel targets for antifungal intervention. The cAMP-PKA signaling pathway is well conserved across eukaryotes. In the nonpathogenic yeast, S. cerevisiae, PKA is activated in response to extracellular nutrients and subsequently regulates metabolism and growth. Importantly, this pathway is also a regulator of pathogenesis, as defects in PKA signaling lead to an attenuation of virulence in diverse plant and human pathogenic fungi. This review will compare and contrast PKA signaling in S. cerevisiae vs. various pathogenic species and provide a framework for the role of this pathway in regulating fungal virulence.

  9. The worm has turned--microbial virulence modeled in Caenorhabditis elegans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sifri, Costi D; Begun, Jakob; Ausubel, Frederick M

    2005-03-01

    The nematode Caenorhabditis elegans is emerging as a facile and economical model host for the study of evolutionarily conserved mechanisms of microbial pathogenesis and innate immunity. A rapidly growing number of human and animal microbial pathogens have been shown to injure and kill nematodes. In many cases, microbial genes known to be important for full virulence in mammalian models have been shown to be similarly required for maximum pathogenicity in nematodes. C. elegans has been used in mutation-based screening systems to identify novel virulence-related microbial genes and immune-related host genes, many of which have been validated in mammalian models of disease. C. elegans-based pathogenesis systems hold the potential to simultaneously explore the molecular genetic determinants of both pathogen virulence and host defense.

  10. Prevalence and virulence factors of Candida spp. associated with blow flies

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wimonrat GunTang

    2017-05-01

    Conclusions: The results indicate that blow flies could play an essential role in the transmission of potentially pathogenic and antifungal resistant C. albicans into the environment. Further investigation on other virulence factors and genetic relatedness among isolates from the blow flies, the environment and clinical specimens is required to confirm this role.

  11. Virulence of Fusarium oxysporum and F. commune to Douglas-fir (Pseudotsuga menziesii) seedlings

    Science.gov (United States)

    J. E. Stewart; Z. Abdo; R. K. Dumroese; N. B. Klopfenstein; M. -S. Kim

    2012-01-01

    Fusarium species can cause damping-off and root rot of young conifer seedlings, resulting in severe crop and economic losses in forest nurseries. Disease control within tree nurseries is difficult because of the inability to characterize and quantify Fusarium spp. populations with regard to disease potential because of high variability in isolate virulence. Fusarium...

  12. Incidence and virulence characteristics of Aeromonas spp. in fish

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ashraf M. Abd-El-Malek

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Aim: This study was conducted to evaluate the presence of Aeromonas spp. in raw and ready-to-eat (RTE fish commonly consumed in Assiut city, Egypt, and to determine virulence factors due to they play a key role in their pathogenicity. Materials and Methods: A total of 125 samples of raw and RTE fish samples were taken from different fish markets and fish restaurants in Assiut Governorate and screened for the presence of Aeromonas spp. by enrichment on tryptic soy broth then incubated at 30°C for 24 h. Plating unto the sterile Petri dishes containing Aeromonas agar base to which Aeromonas selective supplement was added. The plates were incubated at 37°C for 24 h. Presumptive Aeromonas colonies were biochemically confirmed and analyzed for pathogenicity by hemolysin production, protease, and lipase detection. Results: The results indicated that raw fish were contaminated with Aeromonas spp. (40% in wild and 36% in cultured Nile tilapia. Regarding RTE, Aeromonas spp. could be isolated with the percentage of 16%, 28% and 20% in fried Bolti, grilled Bolti and fried Bayad, respectively. Out of 35 isolates obtained, 22 were categorized as Aeromonas hydrophila, 12 were classified as Aeromonas sobria and Aeromonas caviae were found in only one isolate. The virulence factors of Aeromonas spp. were detected and the results showed that all isolates produced of hemolysin (91.4%, protease (77.1%, and lipase enzyme (17.1%. Conclusion: This study indicates that the presence of A. hydrophila with virulence potential in fresh and RTE fish may be a major threat to public health.

  13. Antibiotic modulation of capsular exopolysaccharide and virulence in Acinetobacter baumannii.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Edward Geisinger

    2015-02-01

    between states of low and high virulence potential, which may contribute to the opportunistic nature of the pathogen.

  14. 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.

  15. Catheter-related infections caused by Pseudomonas aeruginosa: virulence factors involved and their relationships.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Olejnickova, Katerina; Hola, Veronika; Ruzicka, Filip

    2014-11-01

    The nosocomial pathogen Pseudomonas aeruginosa is equipped with a large arsenal of cell-associated and secreted virulence factors which enhance its invasive potential. The complex relationships among virulence determinants have hitherto not been fully elucidated. In the present study, 175 catheter-related isolates were observed for the presence of selected virulence factors, namely extracellular enzymes and siderophore production, biofilm formation, resistance to antibiotics, and motility. A high percentage of the strains produced most of the tested virulence factors. A positive correlation was identified between the production of several exoproducts, and also between the formation of both types of biofilm. An opposite trend was observed between the two types of biofilm and the production of siderophores. Whereas the relationship between the submerged biofilm production (i.e. the biofilm formed on the solid surface below the water level) and the siderophore secretion was negative, the production of air-liquid interface (A-L) biofilm (i.e. the biofilm floating on the surface of the cultivation medium) and the siderophore secretion were positively correlated. All correlations were statistically significant at the level P = 0.05 with the correlation coefficient γ ≥ 0.50. Our results suggest that: (1) the co-production of the lytic enzymes and siderophores can play an important role in the pathogenesis of the catheter-related infections and should be taken into account when the virulence potential is assessed; (2) biofilm-positive strains are capable of forming both submerged and non-attached A-L biofilms; and (3) the different micro-environment in the submerged biofilm and A-L biofilm layers have opposite consequences for the production of other virulence factors. © 2014 Federation of European Microbiological Societies. Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd. All rights reserved.

  16. Bacteriophages encode factors required for protection in a symbiotic mutualism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oliver, Kerry M; Degnan, Patrick H; Hunter, Martha S; Moran, Nancy A

    2009-08-21

    Bacteriophages are known to carry key virulence factors for pathogenic bacteria, but their roles in symbiotic bacteria are less well understood. The heritable symbiont Hamiltonella defensa protects the aphid Acyrthosiphon pisum from attack by the parasitoid Aphidius ervi by killing developing wasp larvae. In a controlled genetic background, we show that a toxin-encoding bacteriophage is required to produce the protective phenotype. Phage loss occurs repeatedly in laboratory-held H. defensa-infected aphid clonal lines, resulting in increased susceptibility to parasitism in each instance. Our results show that these mobile genetic elements can endow a bacterial symbiont with benefits that extend to the animal host. Thus, phages vector ecologically important traits, such as defense against parasitoids, within and among symbiont and animal host lineages.

  17. A highly conserved metalloprotease effector enhances virulence in the maize anthracnose fungus Colletotrichum graminicola.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sanz-Martín, José M; Pacheco-Arjona, José Ramón; Bello-Rico, Víctor; Vargas, Walter A; Monod, Michel; Díaz-Mínguez, José M; Thon, Michael R; Sukno, Serenella A

    2016-09-01

    Colletotrichum graminicola causes maize anthracnose, an agronomically important disease with a worldwide distribution. We have identified a fungalysin metalloprotease (Cgfl) with a role in virulence. Transcriptional profiling experiments and live cell imaging show that Cgfl is specifically expressed during the biotrophic stage of infection. To determine whether Cgfl has a role in virulence, we obtained null mutants lacking Cgfl and performed pathogenicity and live microscopy assays. The appressorium morphology of the null mutants is normal, but they exhibit delayed development during the infection process on maize leaves and roots, showing that Cgfl has a role in virulence. In vitro chitinase activity assays of leaves infected with wild-type and null mutant strains show that, in the absence of Cgfl, maize leaves exhibit increased chitinase activity. Phylogenetic analyses show that Cgfl is highly conserved in fungi. Similarity searches, phylogenetic analysis and transcriptional profiling show that C. graminicola encodes two LysM domain-containing homologues of Ecp6, suggesting that this fungus employs both Cgfl-mediated and LysM protein-mediated strategies to control chitin signalling. © 2015 BSPP and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  18. Lvr, a Signaling System That Controls Global Gene Regulation and Virulence in Pathogenic Leptospira

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adhikarla, Haritha; Wunder, Elsio A.; Mechaly, Ariel E.; Mehta, Sameet; Wang, Zheng; Santos, Luciane; Bisht, Vimla; Diggle, Peter; Murray, Gerald; Adler, Ben; Lopez, Francesc; Townsend, Jeffrey P.; Groisman, Eduardo; Picardeau, Mathieu; Buschiazzo, Alejandro; Ko, Albert I.

    2018-01-01

    Leptospirosis is an emerging zoonotic disease with more than 1 million cases annually. Currently there is lack of evidence for signaling pathways involved during the infection process of Leptospira. In our comprehensive genomic analysis of 20 Leptospira spp. we identified seven pathogen-specific Two-Component System (TCS) proteins. Disruption of two these TCS genes in pathogenic Leptospira strain resulted in loss-of-virulence in a hamster model of leptospirosis. Corresponding genes lvrA and lvrB (leptospira virulence regulator) are juxtaposed in an operon and are predicted to encode a hybrid histidine kinase and a hybrid response regulator, respectively. Transcriptome analysis of lvr mutant strains with disruption of one (lvrB) or both genes (lvrA/B) revealed global transcriptional regulation of 850 differentially expressed genes. Phosphotransfer assays demonstrated that LvrA phosphorylates LvrB and predicted further signaling downstream to one or more DNA-binding response regulators, suggesting that it is a branched pathway. Phylogenetic analyses indicated that lvrA and lvrB evolved independently within different ecological lineages in Leptospira via gene duplication. This study uncovers a novel-signaling pathway that regulates virulence in pathogenic Leptospira (Lvr), providing a framework to understand the molecular bases of regulation in this life-threatening bacterium. PMID:29600195

  19. Involvement of NADH Oxidase in Competition and Endocarditis Virulence in Streptococcus sanguinis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ge, Xiuchun; Yu, Yang; Zhang, Min; Chen, Lei; Chen, Weihua; Elrami, Fadi; Kong, Fanxiang; Kitten, Todd; Xu, Ping

    2016-05-01

    Here, we report for the first time that the Streptococcus sanguinis nox gene encoding NADH oxidase is involved in both competition with Streptococcus mutans and virulence for infective endocarditis. An S. sanguinis nox mutant was found to fail to inhibit the growth of Streptococcus mutans under microaerobic conditions. In the presence of oxygen, the recombinant Nox protein of S. sanguinis could reduce oxygen to water and oxidize NADH to NAD(+) The oxidation of NADH to NAD(+) was diminished in the nox mutant. The nox mutant exhibited decreased levels of extracellular H2O2; however, the intracellular level of H2O2 in the mutant was increased. Furthermore, the virulence of the nox mutant was attenuated in a rabbit endocarditis model. The nox mutant also was shown to be more sensitive to blood killing, oxidative and acid stresses, and reduced growth in serum. Thus, NADH oxidase contributes to multiple phenotypes related to competitiveness in the oral cavity and systemic virulence. Copyright © 2016 Ge et al.

  20. Natural variation in the VELVET gene bcvel1 affects virulence and light-dependent differentiation in Botrytis cinerea.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schumacher, Julia; Pradier, Jean-Marc; Simon, Adeline; Traeger, Stefanie; Moraga, Javier; Collado, Isidro González; Viaud, Muriel; Tudzynski, Bettina

    2012-01-01

    Botrytis cinerea is an aggressive plant pathogen causing gray mold disease on various plant species. In this study, we identified the genetic origin for significantly differing phenotypes of the two sequenced B. cinerea isolates, B05.10 and T4, with regard to light-dependent differentiation, oxalic acid (OA) formation and virulence. By conducting a map-based cloning approach we identified a single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) in an open reading frame encoding a VELVET gene (bcvel1). The SNP in isolate T4 results in a truncated protein that is predominantly found in the cytosol in contrast to the full-length protein of isolate B05.10 that accumulates in the nuclei. Deletion of the full-length gene in B05.10 resulted in the T4 phenotype, namely light-independent conidiation, loss of sclerotial development and oxalic acid production, and reduced virulence on several host plants. These findings indicate that the identified SNP represents a loss-of-function mutation of bcvel1. In accordance, the expression of the B05.10 copy in T4 rescued the wild-type/B05.10 phenotype. BcVEL1 is crucial for full virulence as deletion mutants are significantly hampered in killing and decomposing plant tissues. However, the production of the two best known secondary metabolites, the phytotoxins botcinic acid and botrydial, are not affected by the deletion of bcvel1 indicating that other factors are responsible for reduced virulence. Genome-wide expression analyses of B05.10- and Δbcvel1-infected plant material revealed a number of genes differentially expressed in the mutant: while several protease- encoding genes are under-expressed in Δbcvel1 compared to the wild type, the group of over-expressed genes is enriched for genes encoding sugar, amino acid and ammonium transporters and glycoside hydrolases reflecting the response of Δbcvel1 mutants to nutrient starvation conditions.

  1. A Novel ESAT-6 Secretion System-Secreted Protein EsxX of Community-Associated Staphylococcus aureus Lineage ST398 Contributes to Immune Evasion and Virulence

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yingxin Dai

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available The ESAT-6 secretion system (ESS has been reported to contribute to the virulence and pathogenicity of several Staphylococcus aureus strains such as USA300 and Newman. However, the role of the ESS in community-associated S. aureus (CA-SA lineage ST398 in China is not well understood. By comparing the ess locus of ST398 with the published S. aureus sequence in the NCBI database, we found one gene in the ess locus encoding a novel WXG superfamily protein that is highly conserved only in ST398. LC-MS/MS and Western blot analysis revealed that this protein is a novel secreted protein controlled by the ST398 ESS, and we named the protein EsxX. Although EsxX was not under the control of the accessory gene regulator like many other virulence factors and had no influence on several phenotypes of ST398, such as growth, hemolysis, and biofilm formation, it showed important impacts on immune evasion and virulence in ST398. An esxX deletion mutant led to significantly reduced resistance to neutrophil killing and decreased virulence in murine skin and blood infection models, indicating its essential contribution to the evasion of innate host defense and virulence to support the pathogenesis of ST398 infections. The function of this novel secreted protein EsxX might help us better understand the role of the ESS in the virulence and epidemic success of the CA-SA lineage ST398.

  2. A Novel ESAT-6 Secretion System-Secreted Protein EsxX of Community-Associated Staphylococcus aureus Lineage ST398 Contributes to Immune Evasion and Virulence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dai, Yingxin; Wang, Yanan; Liu, Qian; Gao, Qianqian; Lu, Huiying; Meng, Hongwei; Qin, Juanxiu; Hu, Mo; Li, Min

    2017-01-01

    The ESAT-6 secretion system (ESS) has been reported to contribute to the virulence and pathogenicity of several Staphylococcus aureus strains such as USA300 and Newman. However, the role of the ESS in community-associated S. aureus (CA-SA) lineage ST398 in China is not well understood. By comparing the ess locus of ST398 with the published S. aureus sequence in the NCBI database, we found one gene in the ess locus encoding a novel WXG superfamily protein that is highly conserved only in ST398. LC-MS/MS and Western blot analysis revealed that this protein is a novel secreted protein controlled by the ST398 ESS, and we named the protein EsxX. Although EsxX was not under the control of the accessory gene regulator like many other virulence factors and had no influence on several phenotypes of ST398, such as growth, hemolysis, and biofilm formation, it showed important impacts on immune evasion and virulence in ST398. An esxX deletion mutant led to significantly reduced resistance to neutrophil killing and decreased virulence in murine skin and blood infection models, indicating its essential contribution to the evasion of innate host defense and virulence to support the pathogenesis of ST398 infections. The function of this novel secreted protein EsxX might help us better understand the role of the ESS in the virulence and epidemic success of the CA-SA lineage ST398.

  3. Basis of Virulence in Enterotoxin-Mediated Staphylococcal Food Poisoning

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Emilie L. Fisher

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available The Staphylococcus aureus enterotoxins are a superfamily of secreted virulence factors that share structural and functional similarities and possess potent superantigenic activity causing disruptions in adaptive immunity. The enterotoxins can be separated into two groups; the classical (SEA-SEE and the newer (SEG-SElY and counting enterotoxin groups. Many members from both these groups contribute to the pathogenesis of several serious human diseases, including toxic shock syndrome, pneumonia, and sepsis-related infections. Additionally, many members demonstrate emetic activity and are frequently responsible for food poisoning outbreaks. Due to their robust tolerance to denaturing, the enterotoxins retain activity in food contaminated previously with S. aureus. The genes encoding the enterotoxins are found mostly on a variety of different mobile genetic elements. Therefore, the presence of enterotoxins can vary widely among different S. aureus isolates. Additionally, the enterotoxins are regulated by multiple, and often overlapping, regulatory pathways, which are influenced by environmental factors. In this review, we also will focus on the newer enterotoxins (SEG-SElY, which matter for the role of S. aureus as an enteropathogen, and summarize our current knowledge on their prevalence in recent food poisoning outbreaks. Finally, we will review the current literature regarding the key elements that govern the complex regulation of enterotoxins, the molecular mechanisms underlying their enterotoxigenic, superantigenic, and immunomodulatory functions, and discuss how these activities may collectively contribute to the overall manifestation of staphylococcal food poisoning.

  4. Haemophilus ducreyi Hfq contributes to virulence gene regulation as cells enter stationary phase.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gangaiah, Dharanesh; Labandeira-Rey, Maria; Zhang, Xinjun; Fortney, Kate R; Ellinger, Sheila; Zwickl, Beth; Baker, Beth; Liu, Yunlong; Janowicz, Diane M; Katz, Barry P; Brautigam, Chad A; Munson, Robert S; Hansen, Eric J; Spinola, Stanley M

    2014-02-11

    To adapt to stresses encountered in stationary phase, Gram-negative bacteria utilize the alternative sigma factor RpoS. However, some species lack RpoS; thus, it is unclear how stationary-phase adaptation is regulated in these organisms. Here we defined the growth-phase-dependent transcriptomes of Haemophilus ducreyi, which lacks an RpoS homolog. Compared to mid-log-phase organisms, cells harvested from the stationary phase upregulated genes encoding several virulence determinants and a homolog of hfq. Insertional inactivation of hfq altered the expression of ~16% of the H. ducreyi genes. Importantly, there were a significant overlap and an inverse correlation in the transcript levels of genes differentially expressed in the hfq inactivation mutant relative to its parent and the genes differentially expressed in stationary phase relative to mid-log phase in the parent. Inactivation of hfq downregulated genes in the flp-tad and lspB-lspA2 operons, which encode several virulence determinants. To comply with FDA guidelines for human inoculation experiments, an unmarked hfq deletion mutant was constructed and was fully attenuated for virulence in humans. Inactivation or deletion of hfq downregulated Flp1 and impaired the ability of H. ducreyi to form microcolonies, downregulated DsrA and rendered H. ducreyi serum susceptible, and downregulated LspB and LspA2, which allow H. ducreyi to resist phagocytosis. We propose that, in the absence of an RpoS homolog, Hfq serves as a major contributor of H. ducreyi stationary-phase and virulence gene regulation. The contribution of Hfq to stationary-phase gene regulation may have broad implications for other organisms that lack an RpoS homolog. Pathogenic bacteria encounter a wide range of stresses in their hosts, including nutrient limitation; the ability to sense and respond to such stresses is crucial for bacterial pathogens to successfully establish an infection. Gram-negative bacteria frequently utilize the alternative sigma

  5. Deep and shallow encoding effects on face recognition: an ERP study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marzi, Tessa; Viggiano, Maria Pia

    2010-12-01

    Event related potentials (ERPs) were employed to investigate whether and when brain activity related to face recognition varies according to the processing level undertaken at encoding. Recognition was assessed when preceded by a "shallow" (orientation judgement) or by a "deep" study task (occupation judgement). Moreover, we included a further manipulation by presenting at encoding faces either in the upright or inverted orientation. As expected, deeply encoded faces were recognized more accurately and more quickly with respect to shallowly encoded faces. The ERP showed three main findings: i) as witnessed by more positive-going potentials for deeply encoded faces, at early and later processing stage, face recognition was influenced by the processing strategy adopted during encoding; ii) structural encoding, indexed by the N170, turned out to be "cognitively penetrable" showing repetition priming effects for deeply encoded faces; iii) face inversion, by disrupting configural processing during encoding, influenced memory related processes for deeply encoded faces and impaired the recognition of faces shallowly processed. The present study adds weight to the concept that the depth of processing during memory encoding affects retrieval. We found that successful retrieval following deep encoding involved both familiarity- and recollection-related processes showing from 500 ms a fronto-parietal distribution, whereas shallow encoding affected only earlier processing stages reflecting perceptual priming. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  6. Molecular comparison of the structural proteins encoding gene clusters of two related Lactobacillus delbrueckii bacteriophages.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vasala, A; Dupont, L; Baumann, M; Ritzenthaler, P; Alatossava, T

    1993-01-01

    Virulent phage LL-H and temperate phage mv4 are two related bacteriophages of Lactobacillus delbrueckii. The gene clusters encoding structural proteins of these two phages have been sequenced and further analyzed. Six open reading frames (ORF-1 to ORF-6) were detected. Protein sequencing and Western immunoblotting experiments confirmed that ORF-3 (g34) encoded the main capsid protein Gp34. The presence of a putative late promoter in front of the phage LL-H g34 gene was suggested by primer extension experiments. Comparative sequence analysis between phage LL-H and phage mv4 revealed striking similarities in the structure and organization of this gene cluster, suggesting that the genes encoding phage structural proteins belong to a highly conservative module. Images PMID:8497043

  7. Detection of a Bacteriophage Gene Encoding a Mu-like Portal Protein in Haemophilus parasuis Reference Strains and Field Isolates by Nested Polymerase Chain Reaction

    Science.gov (United States)

    A nested PCR assay was developed to determine the presence of a gene encoding a bacteriophage Mu-like portal protein, gp29, in 15 reference strains and 31 field isolates of Haemophilus parasuis. Specific primers, based on the gene’s sequence, were utilized. A majority of the virulent reference strai...

  8. Alternaria Toxins: Potential Virulence Factors and Genes Related to Pathogenesis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mukesh Meena

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available Alternaria is an important fungus to study due to their different life style from saprophytes to endophytes and a very successful fungal pathogen that causes diseases to a number of economically important crops. Alternaria species have been well-characterized for the production of different host-specific toxins (HSTs and non-host specific toxins (nHSTs which depend upon their physiological and morphological stages. The pathogenicity of Alternaria species depends on host susceptibility or resistance as well as quantitative production of HSTs and nHSTs. These toxins are chemically low molecular weight secondary metabolites (SMs. The effects of toxins are mainly on different parts of cells like mitochondria, chloroplast, plasma membrane, Golgi complex, nucleus, etc. Alternaria species produce several nHSTs such as brefeldin A, tenuazonic acid, tentoxin, and zinniol. HSTs that act in very low concentrations affect only certain plant varieties or genotype and play a role in determining the host range of specificity of plant pathogens. The commonly known HSTs are AAL-, AK-, AM-, AF-, ACR-, and ACT-toxins which are named by their host specificity and these toxins are classified into different family groups. The HSTs are differentiated on the basis of bio-statistical and other molecular analyses. All these toxins have different mode of action, biochemical reactions and signaling mechanisms to cause diseases. Different species of Alternaria produced toxins which reveal its biochemical and genetic effects on itself as well as on its host cells tissues. The genes responsible for the production of HSTs are found on the conditionally dispensable chromosomes (CDCs which have been well characterized. Different bio-statistical methods like basic local alignment search tool (BLAST data analysis used for the annotation of gene prediction, pathogenicity-related genes may provide surprising knowledge in present and future.

  9. The Sit-and-Wait Hypothesis in Bacterial Pathogens: A Theoretical Study of Durability and Virulence

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Liang Wang

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available The intriguing sit-and-wait hypothesis predicts that bacterial durability in the external environment is positively correlated with their virulence. Since its first proposal in 1987, the hypothesis has been spurring debates in terms of its validity in the field of bacterial virulence. As a special case of the vector-borne transmission versus virulence tradeoff, where vector is now replaced by environmental longevity, there are only sporadic studies over the last three decades showing that environmental durability is possibly linked with virulence. However, no systematic study of these works is currently available and epidemiological analysis has not been updated for the sit-and-wait hypothesis since the publication of Walther and Ewald’s (2004 review. In this article, we put experimental evidence, epidemiological data and theoretical analysis together to support the sit-and-wait hypothesis. According to the epidemiological data in terms of gain and loss of virulence (+/- and durability (+/- phenotypes, we classify bacteria into four groups, which are: sit-and-wait pathogens (++, vector-borne pathogens (+-, obligate-intracellular bacteria (--, and free-living bacteria (-+. After that, we dive into the abundant bacterial proteomic data with the assistance of bioinformatics techniques in order to investigate the two factors at molecular level thanks to the fast development of high-throughput sequencing technology. Sequences of durability-related genes sourced from Gene Ontology and UniProt databases and virulence factors collected from Virulence Factor Database are used to search 20 corresponding bacterial proteomes in batch mode for homologous sequences via the HMMER software package. Statistical analysis only identified a modest, and not statistically significant correlation between mortality and survival time for eight non-vector-borne bacteria with sit-and-wait potentials. Meanwhile, through between-group comparisons, bacteria with higher

  10. Characterization of Aeromonas hydrophila wound pathotypes by comparative genomic and functional analyses of virulence genes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grim, Christopher J; Kozlova, Elena V; Sha, Jian; Fitts, Eric C; van Lier, Christina J; Kirtley, Michelle L; Joseph, Sandeep J; Read, Timothy D; Burd, Eileen M; Tall, Ben D; Joseph, Sam W; Horneman, Amy J; Chopra, Ashok K; Shak, Joshua R

    2013-04-23

    strains remains a challenge for this genus, as it is for other opportunistic pathogens. This paper demonstrates, by using whole-genome sequencing of clinical Aeromonas strains, followed by corresponding virulence assays, that comparative genomics can be used to identify a virulent subtype of A. hydrophila that is aggressive during human infection and more lethal in a mouse model of infection. This aggressive pathotype contained genes for toxin production, toxin secretion, and bacterial motility that likely enabled its pathogenicity. Our results highlight the potential of whole-genome sequencing to transform microbial diagnostics; with further advances in rapid sequencing and annotation, genomic analysis will be able to provide timely information on the identities and virulence potential of clinically isolated microorganisms.

  11. Brucella abortusΔcydCΔcydD and ΔcydCΔpurD double-mutants are highly attenuated and confer long-term protective immunity against virulent Brucella abortus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Truong, Quang Lam; Cho, Youngjae; Park, Soyeon; Kim, Kiju; Hahn, Tae-Wook

    2016-01-04

    We constructed double deletion (ΔcydCΔcydD and ΔcydCΔpurD) mutants from virulent Brucella abortus biovar 1 field isolate (BA15) by deleting the genes encoding an ATP-binding cassette-type transporter (cydC and cydD genes) and a phosphoribosylamine-glycine ligase (purD). Both BA15ΔcydCΔcydD and BA15ΔcydCΔpurD double-mutants exhibited significant attenuation of virulence when assayed in murine macrophages or in BALB/c mice. Both double-mutants were readily cleared from spleens by 4 weeks post-inoculation even when inoculated at the dose of 10(8) CFU per mouse. Moreover, the inoculated mice showed no splenomegaly, which indicates that the mutants are highly attenuated. Importantly, the attenuation of in vitro and in vivo growth did not impair the ability of these mutants to confer long-term protective immunity in mice against challenge with B. abortus strain 2308. Vaccination of mice with either mutant induced humoral and cell-mediated immune responses, and provided significantly better protection than commercial B. abortus strain RB51 vaccine. These results suggest that highly attenuated BA15ΔcydCΔcydD and BA15ΔcydCΔpurD mutants can be used effectively as potential live vaccine candidates against bovine brucellosis. Copyright © 2015 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd.. All rights reserved.

  12. An electrophysiological investigation of memory encoding, depth of processing, and word frequency in humans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guo, Chunyan; Zhu, Ying; Ding, Jinhong; Fan, Silu; Paller, Ken A

    2004-02-12

    Memory encoding can be studied by monitoring brain activity correlated with subsequent remembering. To understand brain potentials associated with encoding, we compared multiple factors known to affect encoding. Depth of processing was manipulated by requiring subjects to detect animal names (deep encoding) or boldface (shallow encoding) in a series of Chinese words. Recognition was more accurate with deep than shallow encoding, and for low- compared to high-frequency words. Potentials were generally more positive for subsequently recognized versus forgotten words; for deep compared to shallow processing; and, for remembered words only, for low- than for high-frequency words. Latency and topographic differences between these potentials suggested that several factors influence the effectiveness of encoding and can be distinguished using these methods, even with Chinese logographic symbols.

  13. Riboregulators: Fine-Tuning Virulence in Shigella.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fris, Megan E; Murphy, Erin R

    2016-01-01

    Within the past several years, RNA-mediated regulation (ribo-regulation) has become increasingly recognized for its importance in controlling critical bacterial processes. Regulatory RNA molecules, or riboregulators, are perpetually responsive to changes within the micro-environment of a bacterium. Notably, several characterized riboregulators control virulence in pathogenic bacteria, as is the case for each riboregulator characterized to date in Shigella. The timing of virulence gene expression and the ability of the pathogen to adapt to rapidly changing environmental conditions is critical to the establishment and progression of infection by Shigella species; ribo-regulators mediate each of these important processes. This mini review will present the current state of knowledge regarding RNA-mediated regulation in Shigella by detailing the characterization and function of each identified riboregulator in these pathogens.

  14. Novel cyclic di-GMP effectors of the YajQ protein family control bacterial virulence.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shi-qi An

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available Bis-(3',5' cyclic di-guanylate (cyclic di-GMP is a key bacterial second messenger that is implicated in the regulation of many critical processes that include motility, biofilm formation and virulence. Cyclic di-GMP influences diverse functions through interaction with a range of effectors. Our knowledge of these effectors and their different regulatory actions is far from complete, however. Here we have used an affinity pull-down assay using cyclic di-GMP-coupled magnetic beads to identify cyclic di-GMP binding proteins in the plant pathogen Xanthomonas campestris pv. campestris (Xcc. This analysis identified XC_3703, a protein of the YajQ family, as a potential cyclic di-GMP receptor. Isothermal titration calorimetry showed that the purified XC_3703 protein bound cyclic di-GMP with a high affinity (K(d∼2 µM. Mutation of XC_3703 led to reduced virulence of Xcc to plants and alteration in biofilm formation. Yeast two-hybrid and far-western analyses showed that XC_3703 was able to interact with XC_2801, a transcription factor of the LysR family. Mutation of XC_2801 and XC_3703 had partially overlapping effects on the transcriptome of Xcc, and both affected virulence. Electromobility shift assays showed that XC_3703 positively affected the binding of XC_2801 to the promoters of target virulence genes, an effect that was reversed by cyclic di-GMP. Genetic and functional analysis of YajQ family members from the human pathogens Pseudomonas aeruginosa and Stenotrophomonas maltophilia showed that they also specifically bound cyclic di-GMP and contributed to virulence in model systems. The findings thus identify a new class of cyclic di-GMP effector that regulates bacterial virulence.

  15. Virally encoded 7TM receptors

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rosenkilde, M M; Waldhoer, M; Lüttichau, H R

    2001-01-01

    expression of this single gene in certain lymphocyte cell lineages leads to the development of lesions which are remarkably similar to Kaposi's sarcoma, a human herpesvirus 8 associated disease. Thus, this and other virally encoded 7TM receptors appear to be attractive future drug targets.......A number of herpes- and poxviruses encode 7TM G-protein coupled receptors most of which clearly are derived from their host chemokine system as well as induce high expression of certain 7TM receptors in the infected cells. The receptors appear to be exploited by the virus for either immune evasion...

  16. Virulence meets metabolism: Cra and KdpE gene regulation in enterohemorrhagic Escherichia coli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Njoroge, Jacqueline W; Nguyen, Y; Curtis, Meredith M; Moreira, Cristiano G; Sperandio, Vanessa

    2012-10-16

    Gastrointestinal (GI) bacteria sense diverse environmental signals as cues for differential gene regulation and niche adaptation. Pathogens such as enterohemorrhagic Escherichia coli (EHEC), which causes bloody diarrhea, use these signals for the temporal and energy-efficient regulation of their virulence factors. One of the main virulence strategies employed by EHEC is the formation of attaching and effacing (AE) lesions on enterocytes. Most of the genes necessary for the formation of these lesions are grouped within a pathogenicity island, the locus of enterocyte effacement (LEE), whose expression requires the LEE-encoded regulator Ler. Here we show that growth of EHEC in glycolytic environments inhibits the expression of ler and consequently all other LEE genes. Conversely, growth within a gluconeogenic environment activates expression of these genes. This sugar-dependent regulation is achieved through two transcription factors: KdpE and Cra. Both Cra and KdpE directly bind to the ler promoter, and Cra's affinity to this promoter is catabolite dependent. Moreover, we show that the Cra and KdpE proteins interact in vitro and that KdpE's ability to bind DNA is enhanced by the presence of Cra. Cra is important for AE lesion formation, and KdpE contributes to this Cra-dependent regulation. The deletion of cra and kdpE resulted in the ablation of AE lesions. One of the many challenges that bacteria face within the GI tract is to successfully compete for carbon sources. Linking carbon metabolism to the precise coordination of virulence expression is a key step in the adaptation of pathogens to the GI environment. IMPORTANCE An appropriate and prompt response to environmental cues is crucial for bacterial survival. Cra and KdpE are two proteins found in both nonpathogenic and pathogenic bacteria that regulate genes in response to differences in metabolite concentration. In this work, we show that, in the deadly pathogen enterohemorrhagic Escherichia coli (EHEC) O157:H7

  17. Responsiveness to acidity via metal ion regulators mediates virulence in the gastric pathogen Helicobacter pylori.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bury-Moné, Stéphanie; Thiberge, Jean-Michel; Contreras, Monica; Maitournam, Aboubakar; Labigne, Agnès; De Reuse, Hilde

    2004-07-01

    The virulence of pathogenic bacteria is dependent on their adaptation to and survival in the stressful conditions encountered in their hosts. Helicobacter pylori exclusively colonizes the acid stomach of primates, making it an ideal study model. Little is known about how H. pylori responds to the moderately acidic conditions encountered at its colonization site, the gastric mucus layer. Thus, we compared gene expression profiles of H. pylori 26695 grown at neutral and acidic pH, and validated the data for a selection of genes by real-time polymerase chain reaction, dot-blots or enzymatic assays. During growth in acidic conditions, 56 genes were upregulated and 45 genes downregulated. We found that acidity is a signal modulating the expression of several virulence factors. Regulation of genes related to metal ion homeostasis suggests protective mechanisms involving diminished transport and enhanced storage. Genes encoding subunits of the F0F1 ATPase and of a newly identified Na+/H+ antiporter (NhaC-HP0946) were downregulated, revealing that this bacterium uses original mechanisms to control proton entry. Five of the upregulated genes encoded proteins controlling intracellular ammonia synthesis, including urease, amidase and formamidase, underlining the major role of this buffering compound in the protection against acidity in H. pylori. Regulatory networks and transcriptome analysis as well as enzymatic assays implicated two metal-responsive transcriptional regulators (NikR and Fur) and an essential two-component response regulator (HP0166, OmpR-like) as effectors of the H. pylori acid response. Finally, a nikR-fur mutant is attenuated in the mouse model, emphasizing the link between response to acidity, metal metabolism and virulence in this gastric pathogen.

  18. PecS is an important player in the regulatory network governing the coordinated expression of virulence genes during the interaction between Dickeya dadantii 3937 and plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mhedbi-Hajri, Nadia; Malfatti, Pierrette; Pédron, Jacques; Gaubert, Stéphane; Reverchon, Sylvie; Van Gijsegem, Frédérique

    2011-11-01

    Successful infection of a pathogen relies on the coordinated expression of numerous virulence factor-encoding genes. In plant-bacteria interactions, this control is very often achieved through the integration of several regulatory circuits controlling cell-cell communication or sensing environmental conditions. Dickeya dadantii (formerly Erwinia chrysanthemi), the causal agent of soft rot on many crops and ornamentals, provokes maceration of infected plants mainly by producing and secreting a battery of plant cell wall-degrading enzymes. However, several other virulence factors have also been characterized. During Arabidopsis infection, most D. dadantii virulence gene transcripts accumulated in a coordinated manner during infection. This activation requires a functional GacA-GacS two-component regulatory system but the Gac system is not involved in the growth phase dependence of virulence gene expression. Here we show that, contrary to Pectobacterium, the AHL-mediated ExpIR quorum-sensing system does not play a major role in the growth phase-dependent control of D. dadantii virulence genes. On the other hand, the global regulator PecS participates in this coordinated expression since, in a pecS mutant, an early activation of virulence genes is observed both in vitro and in planta. This correlated with the known hypervirulence phenotype of the pecS mutant. Analysis of the relationship between the regulatory circuits governed by the PecS and GacA global regulators indicates that these two regulators act independently. PecS prevents a premature expression of virulence genes in the first stages of colonization whereas GacA, presumably in conjunction with other regulators, is required for the activation of virulence genes at the onset of symptom occurrence. © 2011 Society for Applied Microbiology and Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

  19. Type IV pili in Francisella – A virulence trait in an intracellular pathogen

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Emelie eNäslund Salomonsson

    2011-02-01

    Full Text Available Francisella tularensis is a highly virulent intracellular human pathogen that is capable of rapid proliferation in the infected host. Mutants affected in intracellular survival and growth are highly attenuated which highlights the importance of the intracellular phase of the infection. Genomic analysis has revealed that Francisella encodes all genes required for expression of functional type IV pili (Tfp, and in this focused review we summarise recent findings regarding this system in the pathogenesis of tularemia. Tfp are dynamic adhesive structures that have been identified as major virulence determinants in several human pathogens, but it is not obvious what role these structures could have in an intracellular pathogen like Francisella. In the human pathogenic strains, genes required for secretion and assembly of Tfp and one pilin, PilA, have shown to be required for full virulence. Importantly, specific genetic differences have been identified between the different Francisella subspecies where in the most pathogenic type A variants all genes are intact while several Tfp genes are pseudogenes in the less pathogenic type B strains. This suggests that there has been a selection for expression of Tfp with different properties in the different subspecies. There is also a possibility that the genetic differences reflect adaption to different environmental niches of the subspecies and plays a role in transmission of tularemia. This is also in line with recent findings where Tfp pilins are found to be glycosylated which could reflect a role for Tfp in the environment to promote survival and transmission. We are still far from understanding the role of Tfp in virulence and transmission of tularemia, but with the genomic information and genetic tools available we are in a good position to address these issues in the future.

  20. aes, the gene encoding the esterase B in Escherichia coli, is a powerful phylogenetic marker of the species

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tuffery Pierre

    2009-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Previous studies have established a correlation between electrophoretic polymorphism of esterase B, and virulence and phylogeny of Escherichia coli. Strains belonging to the phylogenetic group B2 are more frequently implicated in extraintestinal infections and include esterase B2 variants, whereas phylogenetic groups A, B1 and D contain less virulent strains and include esterase B1 variants. We investigated esterase B as a marker of phylogeny and/or virulence, in a thorough analysis of the esterase B-encoding gene. Results We identified the gene encoding esterase B as the acetyl-esterase gene (aes using gene disruption. The analysis of aes nucleotide sequences in a panel of 78 reference strains, including the E. coli reference (ECOR strains, demonstrated that the gene is under purifying selection. The phylogenetic tree reconstructed from aes sequences showed a strong correlation with the species phylogenetic history, based on multi-locus sequence typing using six housekeeping genes. The unambiguous distinction between variants B1 and B2 by electrophoresis was consistent with Aes amino-acid sequence analysis and protein modelling, which showed that substituted amino acids in the two esterase B variants occurred mostly at different sites on the protein surface. Studies in an experimental mouse model of septicaemia using mutant strains did not reveal a direct link between aes and extraintestinal virulence. Moreover, we did not find any genes in the chromosomal region of aes to be associated with virulence. Conclusion Our findings suggest that aes does not play a direct role in the virulence of E. coli extraintestinal infection. However, this gene acts as a powerful marker of phylogeny, illustrating the extensive divergence of B2 phylogenetic group strains from the rest of the species.

  1. Differences in virulence genes and genome patterns of mastitis-associated Staphylococcus aureus among goat, cow, and human isolates in Taiwan.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chu, Chishih; Wei, Yajiun; Chuang, Shih-Te; Yu, Changyou; Changchien, Chih-Hsuan; Su, Yaochi

    2013-03-01

    A total of 117 mastitis-associated Staphylococcus aureus isolates from cow, goat, and human patients were analyzed for differences in antibiotic susceptibility, virulence genes, and genotypes using accessory gene regulator (agr) typing, pulsed-field gel electrophoresis (PFGE) and multilocus sequence typing (MLST). Multidrug-resistant (MDR) S. aureus were commonly found in all sources, though they were predominantly found in human and goat isolates. Almost 70% of the isolates were resistant to ampicillin and penicillin. Host-associated virulence genes were identified as follows: tst, a gene encoding toxic shock syndrome toxin, was found in goat isolates; lukED and lukM, genes encoding leukocidin, found in cow isolates; lukPV, a gene encoding leukocidin, found in human isolates; and eta, a gene encoding for exfoliative toxin, found in both human and cow isolates. All four types of hemolysin, α, β, γ, and δ, were identified in human isolates, three types (α, γ, and δ), were identified in cow isolates, and two types (α and δ) were identified in goat isolates. Agr-typing determined agr1 to be the main subtype in human and cow isolates. PFGE and MLST analysis revealed the presence of diverse genotypes among the three sources. In conclusion, mastitis-associated, genetically diverse strains of MDR S. aureus differed in virulence genes among human, cow, and goat isolates.

  2. Virulence Inhibitors from Brazilian Peppertree Block Quorum Sensing and Abate Dermonecrosis in Skin Infection Models

    Science.gov (United States)

    Muhs, Amelia; Lyles, James T.; Parlet, Corey P.; Nelson, Kate; Kavanaugh, Jeffery S.; Horswill, Alexander R.; Quave, Cassandra L.

    2017-01-01

    Widespread antibiotic resistance is on the rise and current therapies are becoming increasingly limited in both scope and efficacy. Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) represents a major contributor to this trend. Quorum sensing controlled virulence factors include secreted toxins responsible for extensive damage to host tissues and evasion of the immune system response; they are major contributors to morbidity and mortality. Investigation of botanical folk medicines for wounds and infections led us to study Schinus terebinthifolia (Brazilian Peppertree) as a potential source of virulence inhibitors. Here, we report the inhibitory activity of a flavone rich extract “430D-F5” against all S. aureus accessory gene regulator (agr) alleles in the absence of growth inhibition. Evidence for this activity is supported by its agr-quenching activity (IC50 2–32 μg mL−1) in transcriptional reporters, direct protein outputs (α-hemolysin and δ-toxin), and an in vivo skin challenge model. Importantly, 430D-F5 was well tolerated by human keratinocytes in cell culture and mouse skin in vivo; it also demonstrated significant reduction in dermonecrosis following skin challenge with a virulent strain of MRSA. This study provides an explanation for the anti-infective activity of peppertree remedies and yields insight into the potential utility of non-biocide virulence inhibitors in treating skin infections. PMID:28186134

  3. Intracellularly Induced Cyclophilins Play an Important Role in Stress Adaptation and Virulence of Brucella abortus

    Science.gov (United States)

    García Fernández, Lucía; DelVecchio, Vito G.; Briones, Gabriel

    2013-01-01

    Brucella is an intracellular bacterial pathogen that causes the worldwide zoonotic disease brucellosis. Brucella virulence relies on its ability to transition to an intracellular lifestyle within host cells. Thus, this pathogen must sense its intracellular localization and then reprogram gene expression for survival within the host cell. A comparative proteomic investigation was performed to identify differentially expressed proteins potentially relevant for Brucella intracellular adaptation. Two proteins identified as cyclophilins (CypA and CypB) were overexpressed in the intracellular environment of the host cell in comparison to laboratory-grown Brucella. To define the potential role of cyclophilins in Brucella virulence, a double-deletion mutant was constructed and its resulting phenotype was characterized. The Brucella abortus ΔcypAB mutant displayed increased sensitivity to environmental stressors, such as oxidative stress, pH, and detergents. In addition, the B. abortus ΔcypAB mutant strain had a reduced growth rate at lower temperature, a phenotype associated with defective expression of cyclophilins in other microorganisms. The B. abortus ΔcypAB mutant also displays reduced virulence in BALB/c mice and defective intracellular survival in HeLa cells. These findings suggest that cyclophilins are important for Brucella virulence and survival in the host cells. PMID:23230297

  4. Antibiotics resistance phenomenon and virulence ability in bacteria from water environment

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    Mohamed I. Azzam

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available This study aims to determine the impact of five main drains as sources of antibiotics resistant bacteria in River Nile at Rosetta branch, and to generate a baseline data on their virulence ability. Out of 212 bacterial isolates, 39.2% and 60.8% were recovered from drains and Rosetta branch, respectively. Susceptibility of bacteria to different antibiotics showed multiple antibiotics resistances (MAR for the majority of isolates. Meanwhile, sensitivity was mostly directed to ofloxacin and norfloxacin antibiotics. Calculated MAR index values (>0.25 classified area of study as potentially health risk environment. Testing virulence ability of bacteria from drains showed positive results (65%. Contrastively, virulent strains in Rosetta branch were mostly lacking in this study. Concluding remarks justify the strong correlation (r = +0.82 between MAR and virulence of bacteria in polluted aquatic ecosystems, and highlight the potential of drains as reactors for their amplification and dissemination. The study suggests regular monitoring for antibiotics resistance in native bacteria of River Nile, prohibition of unregulated use of antibiotics, and proper management for wastes disposal.

  5. Multilocus Sequence Typing and Virulence Profiles in Uropathogenic Escherichia coli Isolated from Cats in the United States.

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    Xiaoqiang Liu

    Full Text Available The population structure, virulence, and antimicrobial resistance of uropathogenic E. coli (UPEC from cats are rarely characterized. The aim of this study was to compare and characterize the UPEC isolated from cats in four geographic regions of USA in terms of their multilocus sequence typing (MLST, virulence profiles, clinical signs, antimicrobial resistance and phylogenetic grouping. The results showed that a total of 74 E. coli isolates were typed to 40 sequence types with 10 being novel. The most frequent phylogenetic group was B2 (n = 57. The most frequent sequence types were ST73 (n = 12 and ST83 (n = 6, ST73 was represented by four multidrug resistant (MDR and eight non-multidrug resistant (SDR isolates, and ST83 were significantly more likely to exhibit no drug resistant (NDR isolates carrying the highest number of virulence genes. Additionally, MDR isolates were more diverse, and followed by SDR and NDR isolates in regards to the distribution of the STs. afa/draBC was the most prevalent among the 29 virulence-associated genes. Linking virulence profile and antimicrobial resistance, the majority of virulence-associated genes tested were more prevalent in NDR isolates, and followed by SDR and MDR isolates. Twenty (50% MLST types in this study have previously been associated with human isolates, suggesting that these STs are potentially zoonotic. Our data enhanced the understanding of E. coli population structure and virulence association from cats. The diverse and various combinations of virulence-associated genes implied that the infection control may be challenging.

  6. The effect of γ radiation on the expression of the virulence genes of Salmonella typhimurium and Vibrio spp

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lim, Sangyong; Jung, Jinwoo; Kim, Dongho

    2007-01-01

    The principle benefit of food irradiation is the reduction of food-borne bacteria in food products. However, the microbiological safety with respect to increased virulence of surviving pathogens after irradiation remains an important issue with regard to the effectiveness of food irradiation. In this study, the transcriptional changes of virulence genes of Salmonella and Vibrio spp. after γ radiation were investigated by real-time PCR (RT-PCR). Samonella typhimurium is dependent upon the products of a large number of genes located within Salmonella pathogenicity islands (SPI) on the chromosome. The expressions of seven genes including four SPI genes, hilD, ssrB, pipB, and sopD, were measured at 1 h after 1 kGy irradiation. Compared with non-irradiated controls, the expression of hilD encoded within SPI1 and sopD encoding SPI1-related effector proteins was reduced about 4- and 16-fold, respectively. The expressions of Vibrio toxin genes, vvhA, ctxA, and tdh, were also monitored during the course of a growth cycle after re-inoculation of irradiated Vibrio spp. (0.5 and 1.0 kGy). The expressions of Vibrio toxin genes tested did not increase compared with non-irradiated counterparts. Results from this study indicate that γ radiation is much more likely to reduce the virulence gene expression of surviving pathogens

  7. The effect of {gamma} radiation on the expression of the virulence genes of Salmonella typhimurium and Vibrio spp

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lim, Sangyong; Jung, Jinwoo [Radiation Food Science and Biotechnology Team, Advanced Radiation Technology Institute, Korea Atomic Energy Research Institute, Jeongup 580-185 (Korea, Republic of); Kim, Dongho [Radiation Food Science and Biotechnology Team, Advanced Radiation Technology Institute, Korea Atomic Energy Research Institute, Jeongup 580-185 (Korea, Republic of)], E-mail: fungikim@kaeri.re.kr

    2007-11-15

    The principle benefit of food irradiation is the reduction of food-borne bacteria in food products. However, the microbiological safety with respect to increased virulence of surviving pathogens after irradiation remains an important issue with regard to the effectiveness of food irradiation. In this study, the transcriptional changes of virulence genes of Salmonella and Vibrio spp. after {gamma} radiation were investigated by real-time PCR (RT-PCR). Samonella typhimurium is dependent upon the products of a large number of genes located within Salmonella pathogenicity islands (SPI) on the chromosome. The expressions of seven genes including four SPI genes, hilD, ssrB, pipB, and sopD, were measured at 1 h after 1 kGy irradiation. Compared with non-irradiated controls, the expression of hilD encoded within SPI1 and sopD encoding SPI1-related effector proteins was reduced about 4- and 16-fold, respectively. The expressions of Vibrio toxin genes, vvhA, ctxA, and tdh, were also monitored during the course of a growth cycle after re-inoculation of irradiated Vibrio spp. (0.5 and 1.0 kGy). The expressions of Vibrio toxin genes tested did not increase compared with non-irradiated counterparts. Results from this study indicate that {gamma} radiation is much more likely to reduce the virulence gene expression of surviving pathogens.

  8. Three regulators of G protein signaling differentially affect mating, morphology and virulence in the smut fungus Ustilago maydis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moretti, Marino; Wang, Lei; Grognet, Pierre; Lanver, Daniel; Link, Hannes; Kahmann, Regine

    2017-09-01

    Regulators of G protein signaling (RGS) proteins modulate heterotrimeric G protein signaling negatively. To broaden an understanding of the roles of RGS proteins in fungal pathogens, we functionally characterized the three RGS protein-encoding genes (rgs1, rgs2 and rgs3) in the phytopathogenic fungus Ustilago maydis. It was found that RGS proteins played distinct roles in the regulation of development and virulence. rgs1 had a minor role in virulence when deleted in a solopathogenic strain. In crosses, rgs1 was dispensable for mating and filamentation, but was required for teliospore production. Haploid rgs2 mutants were affected in cell morphology, growth, mating and were unable to cause disease symptoms in crosses. However, virulence was unaffected when rgs2 was deleted in a solopathogenic strain, suggesting an exclusive involvement in pre-fusion events. These rgs2 phenotypes are likely connected to elevated intracellular cAMP levels. rgs3 mutants were severely attenuated in mating, in their response to pheromone, virulence and formation of mature teliospores. The mating defect could be traced back to reduced expression of the transcription factor rop1. It was speculated that the distinct roles of the three U. maydis RGS proteins were achieved by direct modulation of the Gα subunit-activated signaling pathways as well as through Gα-independent functions. © 2017 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  9. FvSTR1, a striatin orthologue in Fusarium virguliforme, is required for asexual development and virulence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Islam, Kazi T; Bond, Jason P; Fakhoury, Ahmad M

    2017-08-01

    The soil-borne fungus Fusarium virguliforme causes sudden death syndrome (SDS), one of the most devastating diseases of soybean in North and South America. Despite the importance of SDS, a clear understanding of the fungal pathogenicity factors that affect the development of this disease is still lacking. We have identified FvSTR1, a F. virguliforme gene, which encodes a protein similar to a family of striatin proteins previously reported to regulate signalling pathways, cell differentiation, conidiation, sexual development, and virulence in filamentous fungi. Striatins are multi-domain proteins that serve as scaffolding units in the striatin-interacting phosphatase and kinase (STRIPAK) complex in fungi and animals. To address the function of a striatin homologue in F. virguliforme, FvSTR1 was disrupted and functionally characterized using a gene knock out strategy. The resulting Fvstr1 mutants were largely impaired in conidiation and pigmentation, and displayed defective conidia and conidiophore morphology compared to the wild-type and ectopic transformants. Greenhouse virulence assays revealed that the disruption of FvSTR1 resulted in complete loss of virulence in F. virguliforme. Microtome studies using fluorescence microscopy showed that the Fvstr1 mutants were defective in their ability to colonize the vascular system. The Fvstr1 mutants also showed a reduced transcript level of genes involved in asexual reproduction and in the production of secondary metabolites. These results suggest that FvSTR1 has a critical role in asexual development and virulence in F. virguliforme.

  10. Knocking out Bcsas1 in Botrytis cinerea impacts growth, development, and secretion of extracellular proteins, which decreases virulence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Zhanquan; Qin, Guozheng; Li, Boqiang; Tian, Shiping

    2014-06-01

    Pathogenic fungi usually secrete a series of virulence factors to the extracellular environment to facilitate infection. Rab GTPases play a central role in the secretory pathway. To explore the function of Rab/GTPase in filamentous fungi, we knocked out a Rab/GTPase family gene, Bcsas1, in Botrytis cinerea, an aggressive fungal pathogen that infects more than 200 plant species. A detailed analysis was conducted on the virulence and the secretory capability of the mutants. The results indicated that knockout of Bcsas1 inhibited hyphal development and reduced sporulation of B. cinerea on potato dextrose agar plates resulting in reduced virulence on various fruit hosts. Knocking out the Bcsas1 gene led to an accumulation of transport vesicles at the hyphal tip, significantly reduced extracellular protein content, and lowered the activity of polygalacturonase and xylanase in the extracellular medium. However, mutation of Bcsas1 did not affect the expression of genes encoding polygalacturonase and xylanase, suggesting the secretion of these two family enzymes was suppressed in the mutant. Moreover, a comparative analysis of the secretome provided further evidence that the disruption of Bcsas1 in mutant strains significantly depressed the secretion of polysaccharide hydrolases and proteases. The results indicate that Bcsas1, the Rab8/SEC4-like gene, plays a crucial role in development, protein secretion, and virulence of B. cinerea.

  11. Within-host competition does not select for virulence in malaria parasites; studies with Plasmodium yoelii.

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    Hussein M Abkallo

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available In endemic areas with high transmission intensities, malaria infections are very often composed of multiple genetically distinct strains of malaria parasites. It has been hypothesised that this leads to intra-host competition, in which parasite strains compete for resources such as space and nutrients. This competition may have repercussions for the host, the parasite, and the vector in terms of disease severity, vector fitness, and parasite transmission potential and fitness. It has also been argued that within-host competition could lead to selection for more virulent parasites. Here we use the rodent malaria parasite Plasmodium yoelii to assess the consequences of mixed strain infections on disease severity and parasite fitness. Three isogenic strains with dramatically different growth rates (and hence virulence were maintained in mice in single infections or in mixed strain infections with a genetically distinct strain. We compared the virulence (defined as harm to the mammalian host of mixed strain infections with that of single infections, and assessed whether competition impacted on parasite fitness, assessed by transmission potential. We found that mixed infections were associated with a higher degree of disease severity and a prolonged infection time. In the mixed infections, the strain with the slower growth rate was often responsible for the competitive exclusion of the faster growing strain, presumably through host immune-mediated mechanisms. Importantly, and in contrast to previous work conducted with Plasmodium chabaudi, we found no correlation between parasite virulence and transmission potential to mosquitoes, suggesting that within-host competition would not drive the evolution of parasite virulence in P. yoelii.

  12. Multilocus Sequence Typing and Virulence-Associated Gene Profile Analysis of Staphylococcus aureus Isolates From Retail Ready-to-Eat Food in China.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Xiaojuan; Yu, Shubo; Wu, Qingping; Zhang, Jumei; Wu, Shi; Rong, Dongli

    2018-01-01

    The aim of this study was to characterize the subtypes and virulence profiles of 69 Staphylococcus aureus isolates obtained from retail ready-to-eat food in China. The isolates were analyzed using multilocus sequence typing (MLST) and polymerase chain reaction (PCR) analysis of important virulence factor genes, including the staphylococcal enterotoxin (SE) genes ( sea , seb , sec , sed , see , seg , seh , sei , sej ), the exfoliative toxin genes ( eta and etb ), the toxic shock syndrome toxin-1 gene ( tst ), and the Panton-Valentine leucocidin-encoding gene ( pvl ). The isolates encompassed 26 different sequence types (STs), including four new STs (ST3482, ST3484, ST3485, ST3504), clustered in three clonal complexes and 17 singletons. The most prevalent STs were ST1, ST6, and ST15, constituting 34.8% of all isolates. Most STs (15/26, 57.7%) detected have previously been associated with human infections. All 13 toxin genes examined were detected in the S. aureus isolates, with 84.1% of isolates containing toxin genes. The three most prevalent toxin genes were seb (36.2%), sea (33.3%), and seg (33.3%). The classical SE genes ( sea - see ), which contribute significantly to staphylococcal food poisoning (SFP), were detected in 72.5% of the S. aureus isolates. In addition, pvl , eta , etb , and tst were found in 11.6, 10.1, 10.1, and 7.2% of the S. aureus isolates, respectively. Strains ST6 carrying sea and ST1 harboring sec-seh enterotoxin profile, which are the two most common clones associated with SFP, were also frequently detected in the food samples in this study. This study indicates that these S. aureus isolates present in Chinese ready-to-eat food represents a potential public health risk. These data are valuable for epidemiological studies, risk management, and public health strategies.

  13. Multilocus Sequence Typing and Virulence-Associated Gene Profile Analysis of Staphylococcus aureus Isolates From Retail Ready-to-Eat Food in China

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xiaojuan Yang

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available The aim of this study was to characterize the subtypes and virulence profiles of 69 Staphylococcus aureus isolates obtained from retail ready-to-eat food in China. The isolates were analyzed using multilocus sequence typing (MLST and polymerase chain reaction (PCR analysis of important virulence factor genes, including the staphylococcal enterotoxin (SE genes (sea, seb, sec, sed, see, seg, seh, sei, sej, the exfoliative toxin genes (eta and etb, the toxic shock syndrome toxin-1 gene (tst, and the Panton-Valentine leucocidin-encoding gene (pvl. The isolates encompassed 26 different sequence types (STs, including four new STs (ST3482, ST3484, ST3485, ST3504, clustered in three clonal complexes and 17 singletons. The most prevalent STs were ST1, ST6, and ST15, constituting 34.8% of all isolates. Most STs (15/26, 57.7% detected have previously been associated with human infections. All 13 toxin genes examined were detected in the S. aureus isolates, with 84.1% of isolates containing toxin genes. The three most prevalent toxin genes were seb (36.2%, sea (33.3%, and seg (33.3%. The classical SE genes (sea–see, which contribute significantly to staphylococcal food poisoning (SFP, were detected in 72.5% of the S. aureus isolates. In addition, pvl, eta, etb, and tst were found in 11.6, 10.1, 10.1, and 7.2% of the S. aureus isolates, respectively. Strains ST6 carrying sea and ST1 harboring sec-seh enterotoxin profile, which are the two most common clones associated with SFP, were also frequently detected in the food samples in this study. This study indicates that these S. aureus isolates present in Chinese ready-to-eat food represents a potential public health risk. These data are valuable for epidemiological studies, risk management, and public health strategies.

  14. Aerobic Exercise During Encoding Impairs Hippocampus-Dependent Memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Soga, Keishi; Kamijo, Keita; Masaki, Hiroaki

    2017-08-01

    We investigated how aerobic exercise during encoding affects hippocampus-dependent memory through a source memory task that assessed hippocampus-independent familiarity and hippocampus-dependent recollection processes. Using a within-participants design, young adult participants performed a memory-encoding task while performing a cycling exercise or being seated. The subsequent retrieval phase was conducted while sitting on a chair. We assessed behavioral and event-related brain potential measures of familiarity and recollection processes during the retrieval phase. Results indicated that source accuracy was lower for encoding with exercise than for encoding in the resting condition. Event-related brain potential measures indicated that the parietal old/new effect, which has been linked to recollection processing, was observed in the exercise condition, whereas it was absent in the rest condition, which is indicative of exercise-induced hippocampal activation. These findings suggest that aerobic exercise during encoding impairs hippocampus-dependent memory, which may be attributed to inefficient source encoding during aerobic exercise.

  15. Emotion experienced during encoding enhances odor retrieval cue effectiveness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Herz, R S

    1997-01-01

    Emotional potentiation may be a key variable in the formation of odor-associated memory. Two experiments were conducted in which a distinctive ambient odor was present or absent during encoding and retrieval sessions and subjects were in an anxious or neutral mood during encoding. Subjects' mood at retrieval was not manipulated. The laboratory mood induction used in Experiment 1 suggested that anxiety might increase the effectiveness of an odor retrieval cue. This trend was confirmed in Experiment 2 by capturing a naturally stressful situation. Subjects who had an ambient odor cue available and were in a preexam state during encoding recalled more words than subjects in any other group. These data are evidence that heightened emotion experienced during encoding with an ambient odor can enhance the effectiveness of an odor as a cue to memory.

  16. Virulence of Rhodococcus equi Isolated from Cats and Dogs

    OpenAIRE

    Takai, Shinji; Martens, Ronald J.; Julian, Alan; Garcia Ribeiro, Márcio; Rodrigues de Farias, Marconi; Sasaki, Yukako; Inuzuka, Kazuho; Kakuda, Tsutomu; Tsubaki, Shiro; Prescott, John F.

    2003-01-01

    Nine cat isolates and nine dog isolates of Rhodococcus equi from clinical material were investigated for the presence of the virulence-associated antigens (VapA and VapB) and virulence plasmids. Five of the cat isolates and one dog isolate were VapA positive and contained an 85-kb type I or an 87-kb type I plasmid. The remaining 12 isolates were avirulent R. equi strains and contained no virulence plasmids.

  17. Patterns of variation at Ustilago maydis virulence clusters 2A and 19A largely reflect the demographic history of its populations.

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    Ronny Kellner

    Full Text Available The maintenance of an intimate interaction between plant-biotrophic fungi and their hosts over evolutionary times involves strong selection and adaptative evolution of virulence-related genes. The highly specialised maize pathogen Ustilago maydis is assigned with a high evolutionary capability to overcome host resistances due to its high rates of sexual recombination, large population sizes and long distance dispersal. Unlike most studied fungus-plant interactions, the U. maydis - Zea mays pathosystem lacks a typical gene-for-gene interaction. It exerts a large set of secreted fungal virulence factors that are mostly organised in gene clusters. Their contribution to virulence has been experimentally demonstrated but their genetic diversity within U. maydis remains poorly understood. Here, we report on the intraspecific diversity of 34 potential virulence factor genes of U. maydis. We analysed their sequence polymorphisms in 17 isolates of U. maydis from Europe, North and Latin America. We focused on gene cluster 2A, associated with virulence attenuation, cluster 19A that is crucial for virulence, and the cluster-independent effector gene pep1. Although higher compared to four house-keeping genes, the overall levels of intraspecific genetic variation of virulence clusters 2A and 19A, and pep1 are remarkably low and commensurate to the levels of 14 studied non-virulence genes. In addition, each gene is present in all studied isolates and synteny in cluster 2A is conserved. Furthermore, 7 out of 34 virulence genes contain either no polymorphisms or only synonymous substitutions among all isolates. However, genetic variation of clusters 2A and 19A each resolve the large scale population structure of U. maydis indicating subpopulations with decreased gene flow. Hence, the genetic diversity of these virulence-related genes largely reflect the demographic history of U. maydis populations.

  18. Mutations induced by ultraviolet radiation affecting virulence in Puccinia striiformis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Shang Hongsheng; Jing Jinxue; Li Zhenqi

    1994-01-01

    Uredospores of parent culture, cy 29-1, were treated by ultraviolet radiation and mutations to virulent were tested on resistant wheat cultivars inoculated with treated spores. 7 mutant cultures virulent to the test cultivars were developed with estimated mutation rate 10~6~10~4. The virulence of mutant cultures was different from the all known races of stripe rust. Resistance segregation to mutant cultures was detected in two test cultivars. The results suggested that mutation was important mechanism of virulence variation operative in asexual population of rust fungi

  19. Limiting opportunities for cheating stabilizes virulence in insect parasitic nematodes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shapiro-Ilan, David; Raymond, Ben

    2016-03-01

    Cooperative secretion of virulence factors by pathogens can lead to social conflict when cheating mutants exploit collective secretion, but do not contribute to it. If cheats outcompete cooperators within hosts, this can cause loss of virulence. Insect parasitic nematodes are important biocontrol tools that secrete a range of significant virulence factors. Critically, effective nematodes are hard to maintain without live passage, which can lead to virulence attenuation. Using experimental evolution, we tested whether social cheating might explain unstable virulence in the nematode Heterorhabditis floridensis by manipulating relatedness via multiplicity of infection (MOI), and the scale of competition. Passage at high MOI, which should reduce relatedness, led to loss of fitness: virulence and reproductive rate declined together and all eight independent lines suffered premature extinction. As theory predicts, relatedness treatments had more impact under stronger global competition. In contrast, low MOI passage led to more stable virulence and increased reproduction. Moreover, low MOI lineages showed a trade-off between virulence and reproduction, particularly for lines under stronger between-host competition. Overall, this study indicates that evolution of virulence theory is valuable for the culture of biocontrol agents: effective nematodes can be improved and maintained if passage methods mitigate possible social conflicts.

  20. Analysis of multilocus sequence typing and virulence characterization of Listeria monocytogenes isolates from Chinese retail ready-to-eat food

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    Shi eWu

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available Eighty Listeria monocytogenes isolates were obtained from Chinese retail ready-to-eat (RTE food and were previously characterized with serotyping and antibiotic susceptibility tests. The aim of this study was to characterize the subtype and virulence potential of these L. monocytogenes isolates by multilocus sequence typing (MLST, virulence-associate genes, epidemic clones (ECs and sequence analysis of the important virulence factor: internalin A (inlA. The result of MLST revealed that these L. monocytogenes isolates belonged to 14 different sequence types (STs. With the exception of four new STs (ST804, ST805, ST806 and ST807, all other STs observed in this study have been associated with human listeriosis and outbreaks to varying extents. Six virulence-associate genes (inlA, inlB, inlC, inlJ, hly and llsX were selected and their presence was investigated using PCR. All strains carried inlA, inlB, inlC, inlJ, and hly, whereas 38.8% (31/80 of strains harbored the listeriolysin S genes (llsX. A multiplex PCR assay was used to evaluate the presence of markers specific to epidemic clones of L. monocytogenes and identified 26.3% (21/80 of ECI in the 4b-4d-4e strains. Further study of inlA sequencing revealed that most strains contained the full-length InlA required for host cell invasion, whereas three mutations lead to premature stop codons (PMSC within a novel PMSCs at position 326 (GAA→TAA. MLST and inlA sequence analysis results were concordant, and different virulence potentials within isolates were observed. These findings suggest that L. monocytogenes isolates from RTE food in China could be virulent and be capable of causing human illness. Furthermore, the STs and virulence profiles of L. monocytogenes isolates have significant implications for epidemiological and public health studies of this pathogen.

  1. Analysis of Multilocus Sequence Typing and Virulence Characterization of Listeria monocytogenes Isolates from Chinese Retail Ready-to-Eat Food.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, Shi; Wu, Qingping; Zhang, Jumei; Chen, Moutong; Guo, Weipeng

    2016-01-01

    Eighty Listeria monocytogenes isolates were obtained from Chinese retail ready-to-eat (RTE) food and were previously characterized with serotyping and antibiotic susceptibility tests. The aim of this study was to characterize the subtype and virulence potential of these L. monocytogenes isolates by multilocus sequence typing (MLST), virulence-associate genes, epidemic clones (ECs), and sequence analysis of the important virulence factor: internalin A (inlA). The result of MLST revealed that these L. monocytogenes isolates belonged to 14 different sequence types (STs). With the exception of four new STs (ST804, ST805, ST806, and ST807), all other STs observed in this study have been associated with human listeriosis and outbreaks to varying extents. Six virulence-associate genes (inlA, inlB, inlC, inlJ, hly, and llsX) were selected and their presence was investigated using PCR. All strains carried inlA, inlB, inlC, inlJ, and hly, whereas 38.8% (31/80) of strains harbored the listeriolysin S genes (llsX). A multiplex PCR assay was used to evaluate the presence of markers specific to epidemic clones of L. monocytogenes and identified 26.3% (21/80) of ECI in the 4b-4d-4e strains. Further study of inlA sequencing revealed that most strains contained the full-length InlA required for host cell invasion, whereas three mutations lead to premature stop codons (PMSC) within a novel PMSCs at position 326 (GAA → TAA). MLST and inlA sequence analysis results were concordant, and different virulence potentials within isolates were observed. These findings suggest that L. monocytogenes isolates from RTE food in China could be virulent and be capable of causing human illness. Furthermore, the STs and virulence profiles of L. monocytogenes isolates have significant implications for epidemiological and public health studies of this pathogen.

  2. Molecular investigation of virulence factors of Brucella melitensis and Brucella abortus strains isolated from clinical and non-clinical samples.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mirnejad, Reza; Jazi, Faramarz Masjedian; Mostafaei, Shayan; Sedighi, Mansour

    2017-08-01

    Brucella is zoonotic pathogen that induces abortion and sterility in domestic mammals and chronic infections in humans called Malta fever. It is a facultative intracellular potential pathogen with high infectivity. The virulence of Brucella is dependent upon its potential virulence factors such as enzymes and cell envelope associated virulence genes. The aim of this study was to investigate the Brucella virulence factors among strains isolated from humans and animals in different parts of Iran. Seventy eight strains of Brucella species isolated from suspected human and animal cases from several provinces of Iran during 2015-2016 and identified by phenotypic and molecular methods. The multiplex-PCR (M-PCR) assay was performed in order to detect the ure, wbkA, omp19, mviN, manA and perA genes by using gene specific primers. Out of 78 isolates of Brucella spp., 57 (73%) and 21 (27%) isolates were detected as B. melitensis and B. abortus, respectively, by molecular method. The relative frequency of virulence genes ure, wbkA, omp19, mviN, manA and perA were 74.4%, 89.7%, 93.6%, 94.9%, 100% and 92.3%, respectively. Our results indicate that the most of Brucella strains isolated from this region possess high percent of virulence factor genes (ure, wbkA, omp19, mviN, manA and perA) in their genome. So, each step of infection can be mediated by a number of virulence factors and each strain may have a unique combination of these factors that affected the rate of bacterial pathogenesis. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  3. Adaptation of Listeria monocytogenes in a simulated cheese medium: effects on virulence using the Galleria mellonella infection model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schrama, D; Helliwell, N; Neto, L; Faleiro, M L

    2013-06-01

    The aim of this study was to evaluate the effect of the acid and salt adaptation in a cheese-based medium on the virulence potential of Listeria monocytogenes strains isolated from cheese and dairy processing environment using the Galleria mellonella model. Four L. monocytogenes strains were exposed to a cheese-based medium in conditions of induction of an acid tolerance response and osmotolerance response (pH 5·5 and 3·5% w/v NaCl) and injected in G. mellonella insects. The survival of insects and the L. monocytogenes growth kinetics in insects were evaluated. The gene expression of hly, actA and inlA genes was determined by real-time PCR. The adapted cells of two dairy strains showed reduced insect mortality (P 0·05) was found between adapted and nonadapted cells. The gene expression results evidenced an overexpression of virulence genes in cheese-based medium, but not in simulated insect-induced conditions. Our results suggest that adaptation to low pH and salt in a cheese-based medium can affect the virulence of L. monocytogenes, but this effect is strain dependent. In this study, the impact of adaptation to low pH and salt in a cheese-based medium on L. monocytogenes virulence was tested using the Wax Moth G. mellonella model. This model allowed the differentiation of the virulence potential between the L. monocytogenes strains. The effect of adaptation on virulence is strain dependent. The G. mellonella model revealed to be a prompt method to test food-related factors on L. monocytogenes virulence. © 2013 The Society for Applied Microbiology.

  4. Effect of subinhibitory concentrations of chlorogenic acid on reducing the virulence factor production by Staphylococcus aureus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Guanghui; Qiao, Mingyu; Guo, Yan; Wang, Xin; Xu, Yunfeng; Xia, Xiaodong

    2014-09-01

    Chlorogenic acid (CA) has been reported to inhibit several pathogens, but the influence of subinhibitory concentrations of CA on virulence expression of pathogens has not been fully elucidated. The aim of this study was to explore the effect of CA on the virulence factor production of Staphylococcus aureus. The minimum inhibitory concentration (MIC) of CA against S. aureus was determined using a broth microdilution method. Hemolysin assays, coagulase titer assays, adherence to solid-phase fibrinogen assays, Western blot, and real-time reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction were performed to evaluate the effect of subinhibitory concentrations of CA on the virulence factors of S. aureus. MIC of CA against S. aureus ATCC29213 was found to be 2.56 mg/mL. At subinhibitory concentrations, CA significantly inhibited the hemolysis and dose-dependently decreased coagulase titer. Reduced binding to fibrinogen and decreased production of SEA were observed with treatment of CA at concentrations ranging from 1/16MIC to 1/2MIC. CA markedly inhibited the expression of hla, sea, and agr genes in S. aureus. These data demonstrate that the virulence expression of S. aureus could be reduced by CA and suggest that CA could be potentially developed as a supplemental strategy to control S. aureus infection and to prevent staphylococcal food poisoning.

  5. Inactivation of glutamate racemase (MurI) eliminates virulence in Streptococcus mutans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Jianying; Liu, Jia; Ling, Junqi; Tong, Zhongchun; Fu, Yun; Liang, Min

    2016-01-01

    Inhibition of enzymes required for bacterial cell wall synthesis is often lethal or leads to virulence defects. Glutamate racemase (MurI), an essential enzyme in peptidoglycan biosynthesis, has been an attractive target for therapeutic interventions. Streptococcus mutans, one of the many etiological factors of dental caries, possesses a series of virulence factors associated with cariogenicity. However, little is known regarding the mechanism by which MurI influences pathogenesis of S. mutans. In this work, a stable mutant of S. mutans deficient in glutamate racemase (S. mutans FW1718) was constructed to investigate the impact of murI inactivation on cariogenic virulence in S. mutans UA159. Microscopy revealed that the murI mutant exhibited an enlarged cell size, longer cell chains, diminished cell⬜cell aggregation, and altered cell surface ultrastructure compared with the wild-type. Characterization of this mutant revealed that murI deficiency weakened acidogenicity, aciduricity, and biofilm formation ability of S. mutans (Pmutans virulence properties, making MurI a potential target for controlling dental caries. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier GmbH. All rights reserved.

  6. Genome-wide screen of Pseudomonas aeruginosa In Saccharomyces cerevisiae identifies new virulence factors

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    Rafat eZrieq

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available Pseudomonas aeruginosa is a human opportunistic pathogen that causes mortality in cystic fibrosis and immunocompromised patients. While many virulence factors of this pathogen have already been identified, several remain to be discovered. In this respect we set an unprecedented genome-wide screen of a P. aeruginosa expression library based on a yeast growth phenotype. 51 candidates were selected in a three-round screening process. The robustness of the screen was validated by the selection of three well known secreted proteins including one demonstrated virulence factor, the protease LepA. Further in silico sorting of the 51 candidates highlighted three potential new Pseudomonas effector candidates (Pec. By testing the cytotoxicity of wild type P. aeruginosa vs pec mutants towards macrophages and the virulence in the Caenorhabditis elegans model, we demonstrated that the three selected Pecs are novel virulence factors of P. aeruginosa. Additional cellular localization experiments in the host revealed specific localization for Pec1 and Pec2 that could inform about their respective functions.

  7. Distribution Patterns of Polyphosphate Metabolism Pathway and Its Relationships With Bacterial Durability and Virulence

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    Liang Wang

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available Inorganic polyphosphate (polyP is a linear polymer of orthophosphate residues. It is reported to be present in all life forms. Experimental studies showed that polyP plays important roles in bacterial durability and virulence. Here we investigated the relationships of polyP with bacterial durability and virulence theoretically. Bacterial lifestyle, environmental persistence, virulence factors (VFs, and species evolution are all included in the analysis. The presence of seven genes involved in polyP metabolism (ppk1, ppk2, pap, surE, gppA, ppnK, and ppgK and 2595 core VFs were verified in 944 bacterial reference proteomes for distribution patterns via HMMER. Proteome size and VFs were compared in terms of gain and loss of polyP pathway. Literature mining and phylogenetic analysis were recruited to support the study. Our analyzes revealed that the presence of polyP metabolism is positively correlated with bacterial proteome size and the number of virulence genes. A potential relationship of polyP in bacterial lifestyle and environmental durability is suggested. Evolutionary analysis shows that polyP genes are randomly lost along the phylogenetic tree. In sum, based on our theoretical analysis, we confirmed that bacteria with polyP metabolism are associated with high environmental durability and more VFs.

  8. Evaluation of a FRET-peptide substrate to predict virulence in Pseudomonas aeruginosa.

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    Wendy E Kaman

    Full Text Available Pseudomonas aeruginosa produces a number of proteases that are associated with virulence and disease progression. A substrate able to detect P. aeruginosa-specific proteolytic activity could help to rapidly alert clinicians to the virulence potential of individual P. aeruginosa strains. For this purpose we designed a set of P. aeruginosa-specific fluorogenic substrates, comprising fluorescence resonance energy transfer (FRET-labeled peptides, and evaluated their applicability to P. aeruginosa virulence in a range of clinical isolates. A FRET-peptide comprising three glycines (3xGly was found to be specific for the detection of P. aeruginosa proteases. Further screening of 97 P. aeruginosa clinical isolates showed a wide variation in 3xGly cleavage activity. The absence of 3xGly degradation by a lasI knock out strain indicated that 3xGly cleavage by P. aeruginosa could be quorum sensing (QS-related, a hypothesis strengthened by the observation of a strong correlation between 3xGly cleavage, LasA staphylolytic activity and pyocyanin production. Additionally, isolates able to cleave 3xGly were more susceptible to the QS inhibiting antibiotic azithromycin (AZM. In conclusion, we designed and evaluated a 3xGly substrate possibly useful as a simple tool to predict virulence and AZM susceptibility.

  9. Encoding information into precipitation structures

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Martens, Kirsten; Bena, Ioana; Droz, Michel; Rácz, Zoltan

    2008-01-01

    Material design at submicron scales would be profoundly affected if the formation of precipitation patterns could be easily controlled. It would allow the direct building of bulk structures, in contrast to traditional techniques which consist of removing material in order to create patterns. Here, we discuss an extension of our recent proposal of using electrical currents to control precipitation bands which emerge in the wake of reaction fronts in A + + B – → C reaction–diffusion processes. Our main result, based on simulating the reaction–diffusion–precipitation equations, is that the dynamics of the charged agents can be guided by an appropriately designed time-dependent electric current so that, in addition to the control of the band spacing, the width of the precipitation bands can also be tuned. This makes straightforward the encoding of information into precipitation patterns and, as an amusing example, we demonstrate the feasibility by showing how to encode a musical rhythm

  10. Chromosomal and plasmid-encoded factors of Shigella flexneri induce secretogenic activity ex vivo.

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    Christina S Faherty

    Full Text Available Shigella flexneri is a Gram-negative, facultative intracellular pathogen that causes millions of cases of watery or bloody diarrhea annually, resulting in significant global mortality. Watery diarrhea is thought to arise in the jejunum, and subsequent bloody diarrhea occurs as a result of invasion of the colonic epithelium. Previous literature has demonstrated that Shigella encodes enterotoxins, both chromosomally and on the 220 kilobase virulence plasmid. The ShigellaEnterotoxins 1 and 2 (ShET1 and ShET2 have been shown to increase water accumulation in the rabbit ileal loop model. In addition, these toxins increase the short circuit current in rabbit tissue mounted in Ussing chambers, which is a model for the ion exchange that occurs during watery diarrhea. In this study, we sought to validate the use of mouse jejunum in Ussing chamber as an alternative, more versatile model to study bacterial pathogenesis. In the process, we also identified enterotoxins in addition to ShET1 and ShET2 encoded by S. flexneri. Through analysis of proteins secreted from wildtype bacteria and various deletion mutants, we have identified four factors responsible for enterotoxin activity: ShET1 and Pic, which are encoded on the chromosome; ShET2 (encoded by sen or ospD3, which requires the type-III secretion system for secretion; and SepA, an additional factor encoded on the virulence plasmid. The use of mouse jejunum serves as a reliable and reproducible model to identify the enterotoxins elaborated by enteric bacteria. Moreover, the identification of all Shigella proteins responsible for enterotoxin activity is vital to our understanding of Shigella pathogenicity and to our success in developing safe and effective vaccine candidates.

  11. Mutations in the β-Subunit of the RNA Polymerase Impair the Surface-Associated Motility and Virulence of Acinetobacter baumannii.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pérez-Varela, María; Corral, Jordi; Vallejo, Juan Andrés; Rumbo-Feal, Soraya; Bou, Germán; Aranda, Jesús; Barbé, Jordi

    2017-08-01

    Acinetobacter baumannii is a major cause of antibiotic-resistant nosocomial infections worldwide. In this study, several rifampin-resistant spontaneous mutants obtained from the A. baumannii ATCC 17978 strain that differed in their point mutations in the rpoB gene, encoding the β-subunit of the RNA polymerase, were isolated. All the mutants harboring amino acid substitutions in position 522 or 540 of the RpoB protein were impaired in surface-associated motility and had attenuated virulence in the fertility model of Caenorhabditis elegans The transcriptional profile of these mutants included six downregulated genes encoding proteins homologous to transporters and metabolic enzymes widespread among A. baumannii clinical isolates. The construction of knockout mutants in each of the six downregulated genes revealed a significant reduction in the surface-associated motility and virulence of four of them in the A. baumannii ATCC 17978 strain, as well as in the virulent clinical isolate MAR002. Taken together, our results provide strong evidence of the connection between motility and virulence in this multiresistant nosocomial pathogen. Copyright © 2017 American Society for Microbiology.

  12. PhoB activates Escherichia coli O157:H7 virulence factors in response to inorganic phosphate limitation.

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    Samuel Mohammed Chekabab

    Full Text Available Enterohemorrhagic Escherichia coli (EHEC, an emerging food- and water-borne hazard, is highly pathogenic to humans. In the environment, EHEC must survive phosphate (Pi limitation. The response to such Pi starvation is an induction of the Pho regulon including the Pst system that senses Pi variation. The interplay between the virulence of EHEC, Pho-Pst system and environmental Pi remains unknown. To understand the effects of Pi deprivation on the molecular mechanisms involved in EHEC survival and virulence under Pho regulon control, we undertook transcriptome profiling of the EDL933 wild-type strain grown under high Pi and low Pi conditions and its isogenic ΔphoB mutant grown in low Pi conditions. The differentially expressed genes included 1067 Pi-dependent genes and 603 PhoB-dependent genes. Of these 131 genes were both Pi and PhoB-dependent. Differentially expressed genes that were selected included those involved in Pi homeostasis, cellular metabolism, acid stress, oxidative stress and RpoS-dependent stress responses. Differentially expressed virulence systems included the locus of enterocyte effacement (LEE encoding the type-3 secretion system (T3SS and its effectors, as well as BP-933W prophage encoded Shiga toxin 2 genes. Moreover, PhoB directly regulated LEE and stx2 gene expression through binding to specific Pho boxes. However, in Pi-rich medium, constitutive activation of the Pho regulon decreased LEE gene expression and reduced adherence to HeLa cells. Together, these findings reveal that EHEC has evolved a sophisticated response to Pi limitation involving multiple biochemical strategies that contribute to its ability to respond to variations in environmental Pi and to coordinating the virulence response.

  13. Omics strategies for revealing Yersinia pestis virulence

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Ruifu; Du, Zongmin; Han, Yanping; Zhou, Lei; Song, Yajun; Zhou, Dongsheng; Cui, Yujun

    2012-01-01

    Omics has remarkably changed the way we investigate and understand life. Omics differs from traditional hypothesis-driven research because it is a discovery-driven approach. Mass datasets produced from omics-based studies require experts from different fields to reveal the salient features behind these data. In this review, we summarize omics-driven studies to reveal the virulence features of Yersinia pestis through genomics, trascriptomics, proteomics, interactomics, etc. These studies serve as foundations for further hypothesis-driven research and help us gain insight into Y. pestis pathogenesis. PMID:23248778

  14. Metal acquisition and virulence in Brucella

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roop, R. Martin

    2013-01-01

    Similar to other bacteria, Brucella strains require several biologically essential metals for their survival in vitro and in vivo. Acquiring sufficient levels of some of these metals, particularly iron, manganese and zinc, is especially challenging in the mammalian host, where sequestration of these micronutrients is a well-documented component of both the innate and acquired immune responses. This review describes the Brucella metal transporters that have been shown to play critical roles in the virulence of these bacteria in experimental and natural hosts. PMID:22632611

  15. Inhibition of Virulence Gene Expression in Staphylococcus aureus by Novel Depsipeptides from a Marine Photobacterium

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    Lone Gram

    2011-12-01

    Full Text Available During a global research expedition, more than five hundred marine bacterial strains capable of inhibiting the growth of pathogenic bacteria were collected. The purpose of the present study was to determine if these marine bacteria are also a source of compounds that interfere with the agr quorum sensing system that controls virulence gene expression in Staphylococcus aureus. Using a gene reporter fusion bioassay, we recorded agr interference as enhanced expression of spa, encoding Protein A, concomitantly with reduced expression of hla, encoding α-hemolysin, and rnaIII encoding RNAIII, the effector molecule of agr. A marine Photobacterium produced compounds interfering with agr in S. aureus strain 8325-4, and bioassay-guided fractionation of crude extracts led to the isolation of two novel cyclodepsipeptides, designated solonamide A and B. Northern blot analysis confirmed the agr interfering activity of pure solonamides in both S. aureus strain 8325-4 and the highly virulent, community-acquired strain USA300 (CA-MRSA. To our knowledge, this is the first report of inhibitors of the agr system by a marine bacterium.

  16. Immunogenicity and protective efficacy of Semliki forest virus replicon-based DNA vaccines encoding goatpox virus structural proteins

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Zheng Min; Jin Ningyi; Liu Qi; Huo Xiaowei; Li Yang; Hu Bo; Ma Haili; Zhu Zhanbo; Cong Yanzhao; Li Xiao; Jin Minglan; Zhu Guangze

    2009-01-01

    Goatpox, caused by goatpox virus (GTPV), is an acute feverish and contagious disease in goats often associated with high morbidity and high mortality. To resolve potential safety risks and vaccination side effects of existing live attenuated goatpox vaccine (AV41), two Semliki forest virus (SFV) replicon-based bicistronic expression DNA vaccines (pCSm-AAL and pCSm-BAA) which encode GTPV structural proteins corresponding to the Vaccinia virus proteins A27, L1, A33, and B5, respectively, were constructed. Then, theirs ability to induce humoral and cellular response in mice and goats, and protect goats against virulent virus challenge were evaluated. The results showed that, vaccination with pCSm-AAL and pCSm-BAA in combination could elicit strong humoral and cellular responses in mice and goats, provide partial protection against viral challenge in goats, and reduce disease symptoms. Additionally, priming vaccination with the above-mentioned DNA vaccines could significantly reduce the goats' side reactions from boosting vaccinations with current live vaccine (AV41), which include skin lesions at the inoculation site and fevers. Data obtained in this study could not only facilitate improvement of the current goatpox vaccination strategy, but also provide valuable guidance to suitable candidates for evaluation and development of orthopoxvirus vaccines.

  17. Presence and Characterization of Extraintestinal Pathogenic Escherichia coli Virulence Genes in F165-Positive E. coli Strains Isolated from Diseased Calves and Pigs

    OpenAIRE

    Dezfulian, Hojabr; Batisson, Isabelle; Fairbrother, John M.; Lau, Peter C. K.; Nassar, Atef; Szatmari, George; Harel, Josée

    2003-01-01

    The virulence genotype profile and presence of a pathogenicity island(s) (PAI) were studied in 18 strains of F165-positive Escherichia coli originally isolated from diseased calves or piglets. On the basis of their adhesion phenotypes and genotypes, these extraintestinal pathogenic strains were classified into three groups. The F165 fimbrial complex consists of at least two serologically and genetically distinct fimbriae: F1651 and F1652. F1651 is encoded by the foo operon (pap-like), and F16...

  18. Role and regulation of the Flp/Tad pilus in the virulence of Pectobacterium atrosepticum SCRI1043 and Pectobacterium wasabiae SCC3193.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nykyri, Johanna; Mattinen, Laura; Niemi, Outi; Adhikari, Satish; Kõiv, Viia; Somervuo, Panu; Fang, Xin; Auvinen, Petri; Mäe, Andres; Palva, E Tapio; Pirhonen, Minna

    2013-01-01

    In this study, we characterized a putative Flp/Tad pilus-encoding gene cluster, and we examined its regulation at the transcriptional level and its role in the virulence of potato pathogenic enterobacteria of the genus Pectobacterium. The Flp/Tad pilus-encoding gene clusters in Pectobacterium atrosepticum, Pectobacterium wasabiae and Pectobacterium aroidearum were compared to previously characterized flp/tad gene clusters, including that of the well-studied Flp/Tad pilus model organism Aggregatibacter actinomycetemcomitans, in which this pilus is a major virulence determinant. Comparative analyses revealed substantial protein sequence similarity and open reading frame synteny between the previously characterized flp/tad gene clusters and the cluster in Pectobacterium, suggesting that the predicted flp/tad gene cluster in Pectobacterium encodes a Flp/Tad pilus-like structure. We detected genes for a novel two-component system adjacent to the flp/tad gene cluster in Pectobacterium, and mutant analysis demonstrated that this system has a positive effect on the transcription of selected Flp/Tad pilus biogenesis genes, suggesting that this response regulator regulate the flp/tad gene cluster. Mutagenesis of either the predicted regulator gene or selected Flp/Tad pilus biogenesis genes had a significant impact on the maceration ability of the bacterial strains in potato tubers, indicating that the Flp/Tad pilus-encoding gene cluster represents a novel virulence determinant in Pectobacterium. Soft-rot enterobacteria in the genera Pectobacterium and Dickeya are of great agricultural importance, and an investigation of the virulence of these pathogens could facilitate improvements in agricultural practices, thus benefiting farmers, the potato industry and consumers.

  19. Experimental evaluation of the relationship between lethal or non-lethal virulence and transmission success in malaria parasite infections

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    Nithiuthai S

    2004-09-01

    research and adds support to the prediction that partially effective vaccines may select for increasingly virulent malaria parasite strains. By contrast, there was no consistent correlation between transmission and sub-lethal anaemia, a more common outcome of malaria infection. However, overall, the data are not inconsistent with the recent proposal that sub-lethal effects may impose an upper limit on virulence. Moreover, clone specific differences in transmission phenotypes linked to anaemia do suggest that there is considerable adaptive potential relating anaemia and transmission that may lead to uncertain consequences following intervention strategies.

  20. Molecular characterization of the virulent infectious hematopoietic necrosis virus (IHNV strain 220-90

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    LaPatra Scott E

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Infectious hematopoietic necrosis virus (IHNV is the type species of the genus Novirhabdovirus, within the family Rhabdoviridae, infecting several species of wild and hatchery reared salmonids. Similar to other rhabdoviruses, IHNV has a linear single-stranded, negative-sense RNA genome of approximately 11,000 nucleotides. The IHNV genome encodes six genes; the nucleocapsid, phosphoprotein, matrix protein, glycoprotein, non-virion protein and polymerase protein genes, respectively. This study describes molecular characterization of the virulent IHNV strain 220-90, belonging to the M genogroup, and its phylogenetic relationships with available sequences of IHNV isolates worldwide. Results The complete genomic sequence of IHNV strain 220-90 was determined from the DNA of six overlapping clones obtained by RT-PCR amplification of genomic RNA. The complete genome sequence of 220-90 comprises 11,133 nucleotides (GenBank GQ413939 with the gene order of 3'-N-P-M-G-NV-L-5'. These genes are separated by conserved gene junctions, with di-nucleotide gene spacers. An additional uracil nucleotide was found at the end of the 5'-trailer region, which was not reported before in other IHNV strains. The first 15 of the 16 nucleotides at the 3'- and 5'-termini of the genome are complementary, and the first 4 nucleotides at 3'-ends of the IHNV are identical to other novirhadoviruses. Sequence homology and phylogenetic analysis of the glycoprotein genes show that 220-90 strain is 97% identical to most of the IHNV strains. Comparison of the virulent 220-90 genomic sequences with less virulent WRAC isolate shows more than 300 nucleotides changes in the genome, which doesn't allow one to speculate putative residues involved in the virulence of IHNV. Conclusion We have molecularly characterized one of the well studied IHNV isolates, 220-90 of genogroup M, which is virulent for rainbow trout, and compared phylogenetic relationship with North American

  1. Antimicrobial resistance and virulence genes in enterococci from wild game meat in Spain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guerrero-Ramos, Emilia; Cordero, Jorge; Molina-González, Diana; Poeta, Patrícia; Igrejas, Gilberto; Alonso-Calleja, Carlos; Capita, Rosa

    2016-02-01

    A total of 55 enterococci (45 Enterococcus faecium, 7 Enterococcus faecalis, and three Enterococcus durans) isolated from the meat of wild game animals (roe deer, boar, rabbit, pheasant, and pigeon) in North-Western Spain were tested for susceptibility to 14 antimicrobials by the disc diffusion method. All strains showed a multi-resistant phenotype (resistance to between three and 10 antimicrobials). The strains exhibited high percentages of resistance to erythromycin (89.1%), tetracycline (67.3%), ciprofloxacin (92.7%), nitrofurantoin (67.3%), and quinupristin-dalfopristin (81.8%). The lowest values (9.1%) were observed for high-level resistance to gentamicin, kanamycin, and streptomycin. The average number of resistances per strain was 5.8 for E. faecium isolates, 7.9 for E. faecalis, and 5.7 for E. durans. Genes encoding antimicrobial resistance and virulence were studied by polymerase chain reaction. A total of 15 (57.7%) of the 26 vancomycin-resistant isolates harboured the vanA gene. Other resistance genes detected included vanB, erm(B) and/or erm(C), tet(L) and/or tet(M), acc(6')-aph(2″), and aph(3')-IIIa in strains resistant to vancomycin, erythromycin, tetracycline, gentamicin, and kanamycin, respectively. Specific genes of the Tn5397 transposon were detected in 54.8% of the tet(M)-positive enterococci. Nine virulence factors (gelE, agg, ace, cpd, frs, esp, hyl, efaAfs and efaAfm) were studied. All virulence genes, with the exception of the frs gene, were found to be present in the enterococcal isolates. At least one virulence gene was detected in 20.0% of E. faecium, 71.4% of E. faecalis and 33.3% of E. durans isolates, with ace and cpd being the most frequently detected genes (6 isolates each). This suggests that wild game meat might play a role in the spreading through the food chain of enterococci with antimicrobial resistance and virulence determinants to humans. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  2. The NlpD lipoprotein is a novel Yersinia pestis virulence factor essential for the development of plague.

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    Avital Tidhar

    Full Text Available Yersinia pestis is the causative agent of plague. Previously we have isolated an attenuated Y. pestis transposon insertion mutant in which the pcm gene was disrupted. In the present study, we investigated the expression and the role of pcm locus genes in Y. pestis pathogenesis using a set of isogenic surE, pcm, nlpD and rpoS mutants of the fully virulent Kimberley53 strain. We show that in Y. pestis, nlpD expression is controlled from elements residing within the upstream genes surE and pcm. The NlpD lipoprotein is the only factor encoded from the pcm locus that is essential for Y. pestis virulence. A chromosomal deletion of the nlpD gene sequence resulted in a drastic reduction in virulence to an LD(50 of at least 10(7 cfu for subcutaneous and airway routes of infection. The mutant was unable to colonize mouse organs following infection. The filamented morphology of the nlpD mutant indicates that NlpD is involved in cell separation; however, deletion of nlpD did not affect in vitro growth rate. Trans-complementation experiments with the Y. pestis nlpD gene restored virulence and all other phenotypic defects. Finally, we demonstrated that subcutaneous administration of the nlpD mutant could protect animals against bubonic and primary pneumonic plague. Taken together, these results demonstrate that Y. pestis NlpD is a novel virulence factor essential for the development of bubonic and pneumonic plague. Further, the nlpD mutant is superior to the EV76 prototype live vaccine strain in immunogenicity and in conferring effective protective immunity. Thus it could serve as a basis for a very potent live vaccine against bubonic and pneumonic plague.

  3. Differentiation of highly virulent strains of Streptococcus suis serotype 2 according to glutamate dehydrogenase electrophoretic and sequence type.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kutz, Russell; Okwumabua, Ogi

    2008-10-01

    The glutamate dehydrogenase (GDH) enzymes of 19 Streptococcus suis serotype 2 strains, consisting of 18 swine isolates and 1 human clinical isolate from a geographically varied collection, were analyzed by activity staining on a nondenaturing gel. All seven (100%) of the highly virulent strains tested produced an electrophoretic type (ET) distinct from those of moderately virulent and nonvirulent strains. By PCR and nucleotide sequence determination, the gdh genes of the 19 strains and of 2 highly virulent strains involved in recent Chinese outbreaks yielded a 1,820-bp fragment containing an open reading frame of 1,344 nucleotides, which encodes a protein of 448 amino acid residues with a calculated molecular mass of approximately 49 kDa. The nucleotide sequences contained base pair differences, but most were silent. Cluster analysis of the deduced amino acid sequences separated the isolates into three groups. Group I (ETI) consisted of the seven highly virulent isolates and the two Chinese outbreak strains, containing Ala(299)-to-Ser, Glu(305)-to-Lys, and Glu(330)-to-Lys amino acid substitutions compared with groups II and III (ETII). Groups II and III consisted of moderately virulent and nonvirulent strains, which are separated from each other by Tyr(72)-to-Asp and Thr(296)-to-Ala substitutions. Gene exchange studies resulted in the change of ETI to ETII and vice versa. A spectrophotometric activity assay for GDH did not show significant differences between the groups. These results suggest that the GDH ETs and sequence types may serve as useful markers in predicting the pathogenic behavior of strains of this serotype and that the molecular basis for the observed differences in the ETs was amino acid substitutions and not deletion, insertion, or processing uniqueness.

  4. Genomic Changes Associated with the Loss of Nocardia brasiliensis Virulence in Mice after 200 In Vitro Passages.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gonzalez-Carrillo, Carolina; Millan-Sauceda, Cassandra; Lozano-Garza, Hector Gerardo; Ortiz-Lopez, Rocio; Elizondo-Gonzalez, Ramiro; Welsh, Oliverio; Ocampo-Candiani, Jorge; Vera-Cabrera, Lucio

    2016-09-01

    Nocardia species, particularly Nocardia brasiliensis, are etiologic agents of mycetoma, a chronic subcutaneous infection. Until now, little has been known about the pathogenic mechanisms involved in nocardial infection. Traditionally, subculture in rich media has been a simple way to induce attenuation. In this work, we report the changes in virulence toward mice and in genomic constitution of N. brasiliensis produced after 200 continuous subcultures in brain heart infusion (BHI) medium (P-200 strain). The ability of the N. brasiliensis P-200 strain to produce experimental infection was tested using BALB/c mice. P-200 was also used to immunize mice to determine whether it could induce resistance against a challenge with a nonsubcultured isolate (P-0). Comparative proteomic analysis between N. brasiliensis P-0 and P-200 was performed by two-dimensional (2-D) electrophoresis, and the genome sequence was obtained through Roche 454 sequence analysis. Virulence in BALB/c mice was completely lost, and BALB/c mice immunized with P-200 bacterial cells were resistant to mycetoma production by the nonsubcultured strain. Whole-genome sequence analysis revealed that P-200 lost a total of 262,913 bp distributed in 19 deleted regions, involving a total of 213 open reading frames (ORFs). The deleted genes included those encoding bacterial virulence factors, e.g., catalase, nitrate reductase enzymes, and a group of mammalian cell entry (MCE) family proteins, which may explain the loss of virulence of the isolate. Thus, completely attenuated N. brasiliensis was obtained after 200 passages in BHI medium, and putative Nocardia virulence genes were identified for the first time. Copyright © 2016, American Society for Microbiology. All Rights Reserved.

  5. Ulcerogenic Helicobacter pylori strains isolated from children: a contribution to get insight into the virulence of the bacteria.

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    Inês Vitoriano

    Full Text Available Infection with Helicobacter pylori is the major cause for the development of peptic ulcer disease (PUD. In children, with no other etiology for the disease, this rare event occurs shortly after infection. In these young patients, habits of smoking, diet, consumption of alcohol and non-steroid anti-inflammatory drugs and stress, in addition to the genetic susceptibility of the patient, represent a minor influence. Accordingly, the virulence of the implicated H. pylori strain should play a crucial role in the development of PUD. Corroborating this, our in vitro infection assays comparing a pool of five H. pylori strains isolated from children with PUD to a pool of five other pediatric clinical isolates associated with non-ulcer dyspepsia (NUD showed the greater ability of PUD strains to induce a marked decrease in the viability of gastric cells and to cause severe damage in the cells cytoskeleton as well as an impairment in the production/secretion of mucins. To uncover virulence features, we compared the proteome of these two groups of H. pylori strains. Two-dimensional gel electrophoresis followed by mass-spectrometry allowed us to detect 27 differentially expressed proteins between them. In addition to the presence of genes encoding well established virulence factors, namely cagA, vacAs1, oipA "on" status, homB and jhp562 genes, the pediatric ulcerogenic strains shared a proteome profile characterized by changes in the abundance of: motility-associated proteins, accounting for higher motility; antioxidant proteins, which may confer increased resistance to inflammation; and enzymes involved in key steps in the metabolism of glucose, amino acids and urea, which may be advantageous to face fluctuations of nutrients. In conclusion, the enhanced virulence of the pediatric ulcerogenic H. pylori strains may result from a synergy between their natural ability to better adapt to the hostile human stomach and the expression of the established virulence

  6. Antimicrobial medium- and long-chain free fatty acids prevent PrfA-dependent activation of virulence genes in Listeria monocytogenes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sternkopf Lillebæk, Eva Maria; Lambert Nielsen, Stine; Scheel Thomasen, Rikke; Færgeman, Nils J; Kallipolitis, Birgitte H

    The foodborne pathogen Listeria monocytogenes is the causative agent of the invasive disease listeriosis. Infection by L. monocytogenes involves bacterial crossing of the intestinal barrier and intracellular replication in a variety of host cells. The PrfA protein is the master regulator of virulence factors required for bacterial entry, intracellular replication and cell-to-cell spread. PrfA-dependent activation of virulence genes occurs primarily in the blood and during intracellular infection. In contrast, PrfA does not play a significant role in regulation of virulence gene expression in the intestinal environment. In the gastrointestinal phase of infection, the bacterium encounters a variety of antimicrobial agents, including medium- and long-chain free fatty acids that are commonly found in our diet and as active components of bile. Here we show that subinhibitory concentrations of specific antimicrobial free fatty acids act to downregulate transcription of PrfA-activated virulence genes. Interestingly, the inhibitory effect is also evident in cells encoding a constitutively active variant of PrfA. Collectively, our data suggest that antimicrobial medium- and long-chain free fatty acids may act as signals to prevent PrfA-mediated activation of virulence genes in environments where PrfA activation is not required, such as in food and the gastrointestinal tract. Copyright © 2017 Institut Pasteur. Published by Elsevier Masson SAS. All rights reserved.

  7. The subtilisin-like protease AprV2 is required for virulence and uses a novel disulphide-tethered exosite to bind substrates.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ruth M Kennan

    Full Text Available Many bacterial pathogens produce extracellular proteases that degrade the extracellular matrix of the host and therefore are involved in disease pathogenesis. Dichelobacter nodosus is the causative agent of ovine footrot, a highly contagious disease that is characterized by the separation of the hoof from the underlying tissue. D. nodosus secretes three subtilisin-like proteases whose analysis forms the basis of diagnostic tests that differentiate between virulent and benign strains and have been postulated to play a role in virulence. We have constructed protease mutants of D. nodosus; their analysis in a sheep virulence model revealed that one of these enzymes, AprV2, was required for virulence. These studies challenge the previous hypothesis that the elastase activity of AprV2 is important for disease progression, since aprV2 mutants were virulent when complemented with aprB2, which encodes a variant that has impaired elastase activity. We have determined the crystal structures of both AprV2 and AprB2 and characterized the biological activity of these enzymes. These data reveal that an unusual extended disulphide-tethered loop functions as an exosite, mediating effective enzyme-substrate interactions. The disulphide bond and Tyr92, which was located at the exposed end of the loop, were functionally important. Bioinformatic analyses suggested that other pathogenic bacteria may have proteases that utilize a similar mechanism. In conclusion, we have used an integrated multidisciplinary combination of bacterial genetics, whole animal virulence trials in the original host, biochemical studies, and comprehensive analysis of crystal structures to provide the first definitive evidence that the extracellular secreted proteases produced by D. nodosus are required for virulence and to elucidate the molecular mechanism by which these proteases bind to their natural substrates. We postulate that this exosite mechanism may be used by proteases produced by

  8. Virulence-associated gene profiling of Streptococcus suis isolates by PCR

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Silva, L.M.G.; Baums, C.G.; Rehm, T.; Wisselink, H.J.; Goethe, R.; Valentin-Weigand, P.

    2006-01-01

    Definition of virulent Streptococcus suis strains is controversial. One successful approach for identification of virulent European strains is differentiation of capsular serotypes (or the corresponding cps types) and subsequent detection of virulence-associated factors, namely the extracellular

  9. High-throughput, signature-tagged mutagenic approach to identify novel virulence factors of Yersinia pestis CO92 in a mouse model of infection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ponnusamy, Duraisamy; Fitts, Eric C; Sha, Jian; Erova, Tatiana E; Kozlova, Elena V; Kirtley, Michelle L; Tiner, Bethany L; Andersson, Jourdan A; Chopra, Ashok K

    2015-05-01

    The identification of new virulence factors in Yersinia pestis and understanding their molecular mechanisms during an infection process are necessary in designing a better vaccine or to formulate an appropriate therapeutic intervention. By using a high-throughput, signature-tagged mutagenic approach, we created 5,088 mutants of Y. pestis strain CO92 and screened them in a mouse model of pneumonic plague at a dose equivalent to 5 50% lethal doses (LD50) of wild-type (WT) CO92. From this screen, we obtained 118 clones showing impairment in disseminating to the spleen, based on hybridization of input versus output DNA from mutant pools with 53 unique signature tags. In the subsequent screen, 20/118 mutants exhibited attenuation at 8 LD50 when tested in a mouse model of bubonic plague, with infection by 10/20 of the aforementioned mutants resulting in 40% or higher survival rates at an infectious dose of 40 LD50. Upon sequencing, six of the attenuated mutants were found to carry interruptions in genes encoding hypothetical proteins or proteins with putative functions. Mutants with in-frame deletion mutations of two of the genes identified from the screen, namely, rbsA, which codes for a putative sugar transport system ATP-binding protein, and vasK, a component of the type VI secretion system, were also found to exhibit some attenuation at 11 or 12 LD50 in a mouse model of pneumonic plague. Likewise, among the remaining 18 signature-tagged mutants, 9 were also attenuated (40 to 100%) at 12 LD50 in a pneumonic plague mouse model. Previously, we found that deleting genes encoding Braun lipoprotein (Lpp) and acyltransferase (MsbB), the latter of which modifies lipopolysaccharide function, reduced the virulence of Y. pestis CO92 in mouse models of bubonic and pneumonic plague. Deletion of rbsA and vasK genes from either the Δlpp single or the Δlpp ΔmsbB double mutant augmented the attenuation to provide 90 to 100% survivability to mice in a pneumonic plague model at 20

  10. [Virulence of Sporothrix globosa in murine models].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cruz Choappa, Rodrigo; Pérez Gaete, Salomón; Rodríguez Badilla, Valentina; Vieille Oyarzo, Peggy; Opazo Sanchez, Héctor

    The sporothricosis disease is an infection caused by species included in Sporothrix schenkii complex. Verify the virulence of a strain of S. globosa using two different concentrations of inoculum by intraperitoneally and subcutaneously, into a mouse model. Nonrandomized pilot study, in murine inoculated with a strain of S. globosa (CBS 14.076M) by intraperitoneally and subcutaneously with inoculum concentrations of 0.5 and 4 McFarland. For this purpose 18 rodents CF-1 (ISP, Santiago, Chile) were used. The studied strain did not induce illness or injury on animals, they all survived and neither the tissue culture nor the histopathological analysis showed fungal growth or suggestive infection by organ abnormalities. The S. globosa strain did not present any virulence enough to cause disease at 0.5 and 4.0 McFarland concentration inoculum when inoculated in both intraperitoneally and subcutaneously, in murine models. Copyright © 2016 Asociación Argentina de Microbiología. Publicado por Elsevier España, S.L.U. All rights reserved.

  11. Hall effect encoding of brushless dc motors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Berard, C. A.; Furia, T. J.; Goldberg, E. A.; Greene, R. C.

    1970-01-01

    Encoding mechanism integral to the motor and using the permanent magnets embedded in the rotor eliminates the need for external devices to encode information relating the position and velocity of the rotating member.

  12. XocR, a LuxR solo required for virulence in Xanthomonas oryzae pv. oryzicola.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xu, Huiyong; Zhao, Yancun; Qian, Guoliang; Liu, Fengquan

    2015-01-01

    Xanthomonas oryzae pv. oryzicola (Xoc) causes bacterial leaf streak (BLS) in rice, a serious bacterial disease of rice in Asia and parts of Africa. The virulence mechanisms of Xoc are not entirely clear and control measures for BLS are poorly developed. The solo LuxR proteins are widespread and shown to be involved in virulence in some plant associated bacteria (PAB). Here, we have cloned and characterized a PAB LuxR solo from Xoc, named as XocR. Mutation of xocR almost completely impaired the virulence ability of Xoc on host rice, but did not alter the ability to trigger HR (hypersensitive response, a programmed cell death) on non-host (plant) tobacco, suggesting the diversity of function of xocR in host and non-host plants. We also provide evidence to show that xocR is involved in the regulation of growth-independent cell motility in response to a yet-to-be-identified rice signal, as mutation of xocR impaired cell swimming motility of wild-type Rs105 in the presence but not absence of rice macerate. We further found that xocR regulated the transcription of two characterized virulence-associated genes (recN and trpE) in the presence of rice macerate. The promoter regions of recN and trpE possessed a potential binding motif (an imperfect pip box-like element) of XocR, raising the possibility that XocR might directly bind the promoter regions of these two genes to regulate their transcriptional activity. Our studies add a new member of PAB LuxR solos and also provide new insights into the role of PAB LuxR solo in the virulence of Xanthomonas species.

  13. Natural variation in virulence of the entomopathogenic fungus Beauveria bassiana against malaria mosquitoes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Valero-Jiménez, Claudio A; Debets, Alfons J M; van Kan, Jan A L; Schoustra, Sijmen E; Takken, Willem; Zwaan, Bas J; Koenraadt, Constantianus J M

    2014-12-06

    Insecticide resistance is greatly hampering current efforts to control mal