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Sample records for surface anthrax toxin

  1. Anthrax

    Science.gov (United States)

    2017-06-30

    capsule and toxins. Hemorrhagic edema and necrosis of mediastinal lymph nodes ensue. Alveoli show a hemorrhagic exudate and only rarely bacilli...follow cutaneous anthrax and, almost invariably, accompanies inhalational and gastrointestinal anthrax. Vascular injury may result from the proliferation

  2. Monitoring the kinetics of the pH-driven transition of the anthrax toxin prepore to the pore by biolayer interferometry and surface plasmon resonance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Naik, Subhashchandra; Brock, Susan; Akkaladevi, Narahari; Tally, Jon; McGinn-Straub, Wesley; Zhang, Na; Gao, Phillip; Gogol, E P; Pentelute, B L; Collier, R John; Fisher, Mark T

    2013-09-17

    Domain 2 of the anthrax protective antigen (PA) prepore heptamer unfolds and refolds during endosome acidification to generate an extended 100 Å β barrel pore that inserts into the endosomal membrane. The PA pore facilitates the pH-dependent unfolding and translocation of bound toxin enzymic components, lethal factor (LF) and/or edema factor, from the endosome to the cytoplasm. We constructed immobilized complexes of the prepore with the PA-binding domain of LF (LFN) to monitor the real-time prepore to pore kinetic transition using surface plasmon resonance and biolayer interferometry (BLI). The kinetics of this transition increased as the solution pH was decreased from 7.5 to 5.0, mirroring acidification of the endosome. Once it had undergone the transition, the LFN-PA pore complex was removed from the BLI biosensor tip and deposited onto electron microscopy grids, where PA pore formation was confirmed by negative stain electron microscopy. When the soluble receptor domain (ANTRX2/CMG2) binds the immobilized PA prepore, the transition to the pore state was observed only after the pH was lowered to early (pH 5.5) or late (pH 5.0) endosomal pH conditions. Once the pore formed, the soluble receptor readily dissociated from the PA pore. Separate binding experiments with immobilized PA pores and the soluble receptor indicate that the receptor has a weakened propensity to bind to the transitioned pore. This immobilized anthrax toxin platform can be used to identify or validate potential antimicrobial lead compounds capable of regulating and/or inhibiting anthrax toxin complex formation or pore transitions.

  3. Monitoring the kinetics of the pH driven transition of the anthrax toxin prepore to the pore by biolayer interferometry and surface plasmon resonance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Naik, Subhashchandra; Brock, Susan; Akkaladevi, Narahari; Tally, Jon; Mcginn-Straub, Wesley; Zhang, Na; Gao, Phillip; Gogol, E. P.; Pentelute, B. L.; Collier, R. John; Fisher, Mark T.

    2013-01-01

    Domain 2 of the anthrax protective antigen (PA) prepore heptamer unfolds and refolds during endosome acidification to generate an extended 100 Å beta barrel pore that inserts into the endosomal membrane. The PA pore facilitates the pH dependent unfolding and translocation of bound toxin enzymic components, lethal factor (LF) and/or edema factor (EF), from the endosome into the cytoplasm. We constructed immobilized complexes of the prepore with the PA-binding domain of LF (LFN) to monitor the real-time prepore to pore kinetic transition using surface plasmon resonance (SPR) and bio-layer interferometry (BLI). The kinetics of this transition increased as the solution pH was decreased from pH 7.5 to pH 5.0, mirroring acidification of the endosome. Once transitioned, the LFN-PA pore complex was removed from the BLI biosensor tip and deposited onto EM grids, where the PA pore formation was confirmed by negative stain electron microscopy. When the soluble receptor domain (ANTRX2/CMG2) binds the immobilized PA prepore, the transition to the pore state was observed only after the pH was lowered to early or late endosomal pH conditions (5.5 to 5.0 respectively). Once the pore formed, the soluble receptor readily dissociated from the PA pore. Separate binding experiments with immobilized PA pores and soluble receptor indicate that the receptor has a weakened propensity to bind to the transitioned pore. This immobilized anthrax toxin platform can be used to identify or validate potential antimicrobial lead compounds capable of regulating and/or inhibiting anthrax toxin complex formation or pore transitions. PMID:23964683

  4. Potent antitumor activity of a urokinase-activated engineered anthrax toxin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Shihui; Aaronson, Hannah; Mitola, David J.; Leppla, Stephen H.; Bugge, Thomas H.

    2003-01-01

    The acquisition of cell-surface urokinase plasminogen activator activity is a hallmark of malignancy. We generated an engineered anthrax toxin that is activated by cell-surface urokinase in vivo and displays limited toxicity to normal tissue but broad and potent tumoricidal activity. Native anthrax toxin protective antigen, when administered with a chimeric anthrax toxin lethal factor, Pseudomonas exotoxin fusion protein, was extremely toxic to mice, causing rapid and fatal organ damage. Replacing the furin activation sequence in anthrax toxin protective antigen with an artificial peptide sequence efficiently activated by urokinase greatly attenuated toxicity to mice. In addition, the mutation conferred cell-surface urokinase-dependent toxin activation in vivo, as determined by using a panel of plasminogen, plasminogen activator, plasminogen activator receptor, and plasminogen activator inhibitor-deficient mice. Surprisingly, toxin activation critically depended on both urokinase plasminogen activator receptor and plasminogen in vivo, showing that both proteins are essential cofactors for the generation of cell-surface urokinase. The engineered toxin displayed potent tumor cell cytotoxicity to a spectrum of transplanted tumors of diverse origin and could eradicate established solid tumors. This tumoricidal activity depended strictly on tumor cell-surface plasminogen activation. The data show that a simple change of protease activation specificity converts anthrax toxin from a highly lethal to a potent tumoricidal agent.

  5. Tumor Targeting and Drug Delivery by Anthrax Toxin

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christopher Bachran

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available Anthrax toxin is a potent tripartite protein toxin from Bacillus anthracis. It is one of the two virulence factors and causes the disease anthrax. The receptor-binding component of the toxin, protective antigen, needs to be cleaved by furin-like proteases to be activated and to deliver the enzymatic moieties lethal factor and edema factor to the cytosol of cells. Alteration of the protease cleavage site allows the activation of the toxin selectively in response to the presence of tumor-associated proteases. This initial idea of re-targeting anthrax toxin to tumor cells was further elaborated in recent years and resulted in the design of many modifications of anthrax toxin, which resulted in successful tumor therapy in animal models. These modifications include the combination of different toxin variants that require activation by two different tumor-associated proteases for increased specificity of toxin activation. The anthrax toxin system has proved to be a versatile system for drug delivery of several enzymatic moieties into cells. This highly efficient delivery system has recently been further modified by introducing ubiquitin as a cytosolic cleavage site into lethal factor fusion proteins. This review article describes the latest developments in this field of tumor targeting and drug delivery.

  6. Tumor Targeting and Drug Delivery by Anthrax Toxin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bachran, Christopher; Leppla, Stephen H

    2016-07-01

    Anthrax toxin is a potent tripartite protein toxin from Bacillus anthracis. It is one of the two virulence factors and causes the disease anthrax. The receptor-binding component of the toxin, protective antigen, needs to be cleaved by furin-like proteases to be activated and to deliver the enzymatic moieties lethal factor and edema factor to the cytosol of cells. Alteration of the protease cleavage site allows the activation of the toxin selectively in response to the presence of tumor-associated proteases. This initial idea of re-targeting anthrax toxin to tumor cells was further elaborated in recent years and resulted in the design of many modifications of anthrax toxin, which resulted in successful tumor therapy in animal models. These modifications include the combination of different toxin variants that require activation by two different tumor-associated proteases for increased specificity of toxin activation. The anthrax toxin system has proved to be a versatile system for drug delivery of several enzymatic moieties into cells. This highly efficient delivery system has recently been further modified by introducing ubiquitin as a cytosolic cleavage site into lethal factor fusion proteins. This review article describes the latest developments in this field of tumor targeting and drug delivery.

  7. Tumor Targeting and Drug Delivery by Anthrax Toxin

    OpenAIRE

    Bachran, Christopher; Leppla, Stephen H.

    2016-01-01

    Anthrax toxin is a potent tripartite protein toxin from Bacillus anthracis. It is one of the two virulence factors and causes the disease anthrax. The receptor-binding component of the toxin, protective antigen, needs to be cleaved by furin-like proteases to be activated and to deliver the enzymatic moieties lethal factor and edema factor to the cytosol of cells. Alteration of the protease cleavage site allows the activation of the toxin selectively in response to the presence of tumor-associ...

  8. Delayed Toxicity Associated with Soluble Anthrax Toxin Receptor Decoy-Ig Fusion Protein Treatment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cote, Christopher; Welkos, Susan; Manchester, Marianne; Young, John A. T.

    2012-01-01

    Soluble receptor decoy inhibitors, including receptor-immunogloubulin (Ig) fusion proteins, have shown promise as candidate anthrax toxin therapeutics. These agents act by binding to the receptor-interaction site on the protective antigen (PA) toxin subunit, thereby blocking toxin binding to cell surface receptors. Here we have made the surprising observation that co-administration of receptor decoy-Ig fusion proteins significantly delayed, but did not protect, rats challenged with anthrax lethal toxin. The delayed toxicity was associated with the in vivo assembly of a long-lived complex comprised of anthrax lethal toxin and the receptor decoy-Ig inhibitor. Intoxication in this system presumably results from the slow dissociation of the toxin complex from the inhibitor following their prolonged circulation. We conclude that while receptor decoy-Ig proteins represent promising candidates for the early treatment of B. anthracis infection, they may not be suitable for therapeutic use at later stages when fatal levels of toxin have already accumulated in the bloodstream. PMID:22511955

  9. Anthrax Toxin Receptor 2–Dependent Lethal Toxin Killing In Vivo

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scobie, Heather M; Wigelsworth, Darran J; Marlett, John M; Thomas, Diane; Rainey, G. Jonah A; Lacy, D. Borden; Manchester, Marianne; Collier, R. John; Young, John A. T

    2006-01-01

    Anthrax toxin receptors 1 and 2 (ANTXR1 and ANTXR2) have a related integrin-like inserted (I) domain which interacts with a metal cation that is coordinated by residue D683 of the protective antigen (PA) subunit of anthrax toxin. The receptor-bound metal ion and PA residue D683 are critical for ANTXR1-PA binding. Since PA can bind to ANTXR2 with reduced affinity in the absence of metal ions, we reasoned that D683 mutant forms of PA might specifically interact with ANTXR2. We show here that this is the case. The differential ability of ANTXR1 and ANTXR2 to bind D683 mutant PA proteins was mapped to nonconserved receptor residues at the binding interface with PA domain 2. Moreover, a D683K mutant form of PA that bound specifically to human and rat ANTXR2 mediated killing of rats by anthrax lethal toxin, providing strong evidence for the physiological importance of ANTXR2 in anthrax disease pathogenesis. PMID:17054395

  10. The Effects of Anthrax Lethal Toxin on Host Barrier Function

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    David M. Frucht

    2011-06-01

    Full Text Available The pathological actions of anthrax toxin require the activities of its edema factor (EF and lethal factor (LF enzyme components, which gain intracellular access via its receptor-binding component, protective antigen (PA. LF is a metalloproteinase with specificity for selected mitogen-activated protein kinase kinases (MKKs, but its activity is not directly lethal to many types of primary and transformed cells in vitro. Nevertheless, in vivo treatment of several animal species with the combination of LF and PA (termed lethal toxin or LT leads to morbidity and mortality, suggesting that LT-dependent toxicity is mediated by cellular interactions between host cells. Decades of research have revealed that a central hallmark of this toxicity is the disruption of key cellular barriers required to maintain homeostasis. This review will focus on the current understanding of the effects of LT on barrier function, highlighting recent progress in establishing the molecular mechanisms underlying these effects.

  11. The medicinal chemistry of botulinum, ricin and anthrax toxins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hicks, Rickey P; Hartell, Mark G; Nichols, Daniel A; Bhattacharjee, Apurba K; van Hamont, John E; Skillman, Donald R

    2005-01-01

    The potential use of weapons of mass destruction (nuclear, biological or chemical) by terrorist organizations represents a major threat to world peace and safety. Only a limited number of vaccines are available to protect the general population from the medical consequences of these weapons. In addition there are major health concerns associated with a pre-exposure mass vaccination of the general population. To reduce or eliminate the impact of these terrible threats, new drugs must be developed to safely treat individuals exposed to these agents. A review of all therapeutic agents under development for the treatment of the illnesses and injuries that result from exposure to nuclear, biological or chemical warfare agents is beyond the scope of any single article. The intent here is to provide a focused review for medicinal and organic chemists of three widely discussed and easily deployed biological warfare agents, botulinum neurotoxin and ricin toxins and the bacteria Bacillus anthracis. Anthrax will be addressed because of its similarity in both structure and mechanism of catalytic activity with botulinum toxin. The common feature of these three agents is that they exhibit their biological activity via toxin enzymatic hydrolysis of a specific bond in their respective substrate molecules. A brief introduction to the history of each of the biological warfare agents is presented followed by a discussion on the mechanisms of action of each at the molecular level, and a review of current potential inhibitors under investigation.

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

    OpenAIRE

    Kandadi, Machender R; Yu, Xuejun; Frankel, Arthur E; Ren, Jun

    2012-01-01

    Abstract Background Lethal and edema toxins secreted by Bacillus anthracis during anthrax infection were found to incite serious cardiovascular complications. However, the underlying mechanisms in anthrax lethal toxin-induced cardiac anomalies remain unknown. This study was designed to evaluate the impact of antioxidant enzyme catalase in anthrax lethal toxin-induced cardiomyocyte contractile dysfunction. Methods Wild type (WT) and cardiac-specific catalase overexpression mice were challenged...

  13. Comparative toxicity and efficacy of engineered anthrax lethal toxin variants with broad anti-tumor activities

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Peters, Diane E.; Hoover, Benjamin; Cloud, Loretta Grey; Liu, Shihui; Molinolo, Alfredo A.; Leppla, Stephen H.; Bugge, Thomas H.

    2014-01-01

    We have previously designed and characterized versions of anthrax lethal toxin that are selectively cytotoxic in the tumor microenvironment and which display broad and potent anti-tumor activities in vivo. Here, we have performed the first direct comparison of the safety and efficacy of three engineered anthrax lethal toxin variants requiring activation by either matrix-metalloproteinases (MMPs), urokinase plasminogen activator (uPA) or co-localized MMP/uPA activities. C57BL/6J mice were challenged with six doses of engineered toxins via intraperitoneal (I.P.) or intravenous (I.V.) dose routes to determine the maximum tolerated dose for six administrations (MTD6) and dose-limiting toxicities. Efficacy was evaluated using the B16-BL6 syngraft model of melanoma; mice bearing established tumors were treated with six I.P. doses of toxin and tumor measurements and immunohistochemistry, paired with terminal blood work, were used to elaborate upon the anti-tumor mechanism and relative efficacy of each variant. We found that MMP-, uPA- and dual MMP/uPA-activated anthrax lethal toxins exhibited the same dose-limiting toxicity; dose-dependent GI toxicity. In terms of efficacy, all three toxins significantly reduced primary B16-BL6 tumor burden, ranging from 32% to 87% reduction, and they also delayed disease progression as evidenced by dose-dependent normalization of blood work values. While target organ toxicity and effective doses were similar amongst the variants, the dual MMP/uPA-activated anthrax lethal toxin exhibited the highest I.P. MTD6 and was 1.5–3-fold better tolerated than the single MMP- and uPA-activated toxins. Overall, we demonstrate that this dual MMP/uPA-activated anthrax lethal toxin can be administered safely and is highly effective in a preclinical model of melanoma. This modified bacterial cytotoxin is thus a promising candidate for further clinical development and evaluation for use in treating human cancers. - Highlights: • Toxicity and anti

  14. Comparative toxicity and efficacy of engineered anthrax lethal toxin variants with broad anti-tumor activities

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Peters, Diane E. [Proteases and Tissue Remodeling Section, Oral and Pharyngeal Cancer Branch, National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, MD (United States); Program of Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics, Tufts University School of Medicine, Boston, MA (United States); Hoover, Benjamin [Laboratory of Parasitic Diseases, National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, MD (United States); Cloud, Loretta Grey [Proteases and Tissue Remodeling Section, Oral and Pharyngeal Cancer Branch, National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, MD (United States); Liu, Shihui [Laboratory of Parasitic Diseases, National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, MD (United States); Molinolo, Alfredo A. [Oral and Pharyngeal Cancer Branch, National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, MD (United States); Leppla, Stephen H. [Laboratory of Parasitic Diseases, National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, MD (United States); Bugge, Thomas H., E-mail: thomas.bugge@nih.go [Proteases and Tissue Remodeling Section, Oral and Pharyngeal Cancer Branch, National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, MD (United States)

    2014-09-01

    We have previously designed and characterized versions of anthrax lethal toxin that are selectively cytotoxic in the tumor microenvironment and which display broad and potent anti-tumor activities in vivo. Here, we have performed the first direct comparison of the safety and efficacy of three engineered anthrax lethal toxin variants requiring activation by either matrix-metalloproteinases (MMPs), urokinase plasminogen activator (uPA) or co-localized MMP/uPA activities. C57BL/6J mice were challenged with six doses of engineered toxins via intraperitoneal (I.P.) or intravenous (I.V.) dose routes to determine the maximum tolerated dose for six administrations (MTD6) and dose-limiting toxicities. Efficacy was evaluated using the B16-BL6 syngraft model of melanoma; mice bearing established tumors were treated with six I.P. doses of toxin and tumor measurements and immunohistochemistry, paired with terminal blood work, were used to elaborate upon the anti-tumor mechanism and relative efficacy of each variant. We found that MMP-, uPA- and dual MMP/uPA-activated anthrax lethal toxins exhibited the same dose-limiting toxicity; dose-dependent GI toxicity. In terms of efficacy, all three toxins significantly reduced primary B16-BL6 tumor burden, ranging from 32% to 87% reduction, and they also delayed disease progression as evidenced by dose-dependent normalization of blood work values. While target organ toxicity and effective doses were similar amongst the variants, the dual MMP/uPA-activated anthrax lethal toxin exhibited the highest I.P. MTD6 and was 1.5–3-fold better tolerated than the single MMP- and uPA-activated toxins. Overall, we demonstrate that this dual MMP/uPA-activated anthrax lethal toxin can be administered safely and is highly effective in a preclinical model of melanoma. This modified bacterial cytotoxin is thus a promising candidate for further clinical development and evaluation for use in treating human cancers. - Highlights: • Toxicity and anti

  15. Disulfide bonds in the ectodomain of anthrax toxin receptor 2 are required for the receptor-bound protective-antigen pore to function.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jianjun Sun

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Cell-surface receptors play essential roles in anthrax toxin action by providing the toxin with a high-affinity anchor and self-assembly site on the plasma membrane, mediating the toxin entry into cells through endocytosis, and shifting the pH threshold for prepore-to-pore conversion of anthrax toxin protective antigen (PA to a more acidic pH, thereby inhibiting premature pore formation. Each of the two known anthrax toxin receptors, ANTXR1 and ANTXR2, has an ectodomain comprised of an N-terminal von Willebrand factor A domain (VWA, which binds PA, and an uncharacterized immunoglobulin-like domain (Ig that connects VWA to the membrane-spanning domain. Potential roles of the receptor Ig domain in anthrax toxin action have not been investigated heretofore. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We expressed and purified the ANTXR2 ectodomain (R2-VWA-Ig in E. coli and showed that it contains three disulfide bonds: one in R2-VWA and two in R2-Ig. Reduction of the ectodomain inhibited functioning of the pore, as measured by K(+ release from liposomes or Chinese hamster ovary cells or by PA-mediated translocation of a model substrate across the plasma membrane. However, reduction did not affect binding of the ectodomain to PA or the transition of ectodomain-bound PA prepore to the pore conformation. The inhibitory effect depended specifically on reduction of the disulfides within R2-Ig. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: We conclude that disulfide integrity within R2-Ig is essential for proper functioning of receptor-bound PA pore. This finding provides a novel venue to investigate the mechanism of anthrax toxin action and suggests new strategies for inhibiting toxin action.

  16. Tumor endothelium marker-8 based decoys exhibit superiority over capillary morphogenesis protein-2 based decoys as anthrax toxin inhibitors.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chenguang Cai

    Full Text Available Anthrax toxin is the major virulence factor produced by Bacillus anthracis. The toxin consists of three protein subunits: protective antigen (PA, lethal factor, and edema factor. Inhibition of PA binding to its receptors, tumor endothelium marker-8 (TEM8 and capillary morphogenesis protein-2 (CMG2 can effectively block anthrax intoxication, which is particularly valuable when the toxin has already been overproduced at the late stage of anthrax infection, thus rendering antibiotics ineffectual. Receptor-like agonists, such as the mammalian cell-expressed von Willebrand factor type A (vWA domain of CMG2 (sCMG2, have demonstrated potency against the anthrax toxin. However, the soluble vWA domain of TEM8 (sTEM8 was ruled out as an anthrax toxin inhibitor candidate due to its inferior affinity to PA. In the present study, we report that L56A, a PA-binding-affinity-elevated mutant of sTEM8, could inhibit anthrax intoxication as effectively as sCMG2 in Fisher 344 rats. Additionally, pharmacokinetics showed that L56A and sTEM8 exhibit advantages over sCMG2 with better lung-targeting and longer plasma retention time, which may contribute to their enhanced protective ability in vivo. Our results suggest that receptor decoys based on TEM8 are promising anthrax toxin inhibitors and, together with the pharmacokinetic studies in this report, may contribute to the development of novel anthrax drugs.

  17. Peptide Probes Reveal a Hydrophobic Steric Ratchet in the Anthrax Toxin Protective Antigen Translocase.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Colby, Jennifer M; Krantz, Bryan A

    2015-11-06

    Anthrax toxin is a tripartite virulence factor produced by Bacillus anthracis during infection. Under acidic endosomal pH conditions, the toxin's protective antigen (PA) component forms a transmembrane channel in host cells. The PA channel then translocates its two enzyme components, lethal factor and edema factor, into the host cytosol under the proton motive force. Protein translocation under a proton motive force is catalyzed by a series of nonspecific polypeptide binding sites, called clamps. A 10-residue guest/host peptide model system, KKKKKXXSXX, was used to functionally probe polypeptide-clamp interactions within wild-type PA channels. The guest residues were Thr, Ala, Leu, Phe, Tyr, and Trp. In steady-state translocation experiments, the channel blocked most tightly with peptides that had increasing amounts of nonpolar surface area. Cooperative peptide binding was observed in the Trp-containing peptide sequence but not the other tested sequences. Trp substitutions into a flexible, uncharged linker between the lethal factor amino-terminal domain and diphtheria toxin A chain expedited translocation. Therefore, peptide-clamp sites in translocase channels can sense large steric features (like tryptophan) in peptides, and while these steric interactions may make a peptide translocate poorly, in the context of folded domains, they can make the protein translocate more rapidly presumably via a hydrophobic steric ratchet mechanism. Copyright © 2015 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd.. All rights reserved.

  18. Anthrax

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... it's most commonly seen in grazing animals like sheep, pigs, cattle, horses, and goats, anthrax also can ... at first, but it rapidly turns into severe pneumonia and requires hospitalization. It usually takes fewer than ...

  19. Anthrax

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... site may get infected. Exams and Tests The health care provider will perform a physical examination. The tests to diagnose anthrax depend on the type of disease that is suspected. A culture of the skin, and sometimes a biopsy , are ...

  20. Anthrax toxin: the long and winding road that leads to the kill.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abrami, Laurence; Reig, Nuria; van der Goot, F Gisou

    2005-02-01

    The past five years have led to a tremendous increase in our molecular understanding of the mode of action of the anthrax toxin, one of the two main virulence factors produced by Bacillus anthracis. The structures of each of the three components of the toxin--lethal factor (LF), edema factor (EF) and protective antigen (PA)--have been solved not only in their monomeric forms but, depending on the subunit, in a heptameric form, bound to their substrate, co-factor or receptor. The endocytic route followed by the toxin has also been unraveled and the enzymatic mechanisms of EF and LF elucidated.

  1. Comparative toxicity and efficacy of engineered anthrax lethal toxin variants with broad anti-tumor activities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peters, Diane E; Hoover, Benjamin; Cloud, Loretta Grey; Liu, Shihui; Molinolo, Alfredo A; Leppla, Stephen H; Bugge, Thomas H

    2014-09-01

    We have previously designed and characterized versions of anthrax lethal toxin that are selectively cytotoxic in the tumor microenvironment and which display broad and potent anti-tumor activities in vivo. Here, we have performed the first direct comparison of the safety and efficacy of three engineered anthrax lethal toxin variants requiring activation by either matrix-metalloproteinases (MMPs), urokinase plasminogen activator (uPA) or co-localized MMP/uPA activities. C57BL/6J mice were challenged with six doses of engineered toxins via intraperitoneal (I.P.) or intravenous (I.V.) dose routes to determine the maximum tolerated dose for six administrations (MTD6) and dose-limiting toxicities. Efficacy was evaluated using the B16-BL6 syngraft model of melanoma; mice bearing established tumors were treated with six I.P. doses of toxin and tumor measurements and immunohistochemistry, paired with terminal blood work, were used to elaborate upon the anti-tumor mechanism and relative efficacy of each variant. We found that MMP-, uPA- and dual MMP/uPA-activated anthrax lethal toxins exhibited the same dose-limiting toxicity; dose-dependent GI toxicity. In terms of efficacy, all three toxins significantly reduced primary B16-BL6 tumor burden, ranging from 32% to 87% reduction, and they also delayed disease progression as evidenced by dose-dependent normalization of blood work values. While target organ toxicity and effective doses were similar amongst the variants, the dual MMP/uPA-activated anthrax lethal toxin exhibited the highest I.P. MTD6 and was 1.5-3-fold better tolerated than the single MMP- and uPA-activated toxins. Overall, we demonstrate that this dual MMP/uPA-activated anthrax lethal toxin can be administered safely and is highly effective in a preclinical model of melanoma. This modified bacterial cytotoxin is thus a promising candidate for further clinical development and evaluation for use in treating human cancers. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  2. Design of monodisperse and well-defined polypeptide-based polyvalent inhibitors of anthrax toxin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Patke, Sanket; Boggara, Mohan; Maheshwari, Ronak; Srivastava, Sunit K; Arha, Manish; Douaisi, Marc; Martin, Jacob T; Harvey, Ian B; Brier, Matthew; Rosen, Tania; Mogridge, Jeremy; Kane, Ravi S

    2014-07-28

    The design of polyvalent molecules, presenting multiple copies of a specific ligand, represents a promising strategy to inhibit pathogens and toxins. The ability to control independently the valency and the spacing between ligands would be valuable for elucidating structure-activity relationships and for designing potent polyvalent molecules. To that end, we designed monodisperse polypeptide-based polyvalent inhibitors of anthrax toxin in which multiple copies of an inhibitory toxin-binding peptide were separated by flexible peptide linkers. By tuning the valency and linker length, we designed polyvalent inhibitors that were over four orders of magnitude more potent than the corresponding monovalent ligands. This strategy for the rational design of monodisperse polyvalent molecules may not only be broadly applicable for the inhibition of toxins and pathogens, but also for controlling the nanoscale organization of cellular receptors to regulate signaling and the fate of stem cells. © 2014 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  3. Differential dependence on N-glycosylation of anthrax toxin receptors CMG2 and TEM8.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sarah Friebe

    Full Text Available ANTXR 1 and 2, also known as TEM8 and CMG2, are two type I membrane proteins, which have been extensively studied for their role as anthrax toxin receptors, but with a still elusive physiological function. Here we have analyzed the importance of N-glycosylation on folding, trafficking and ligand binding of these closely related proteins. We find that TEM8 has a stringent dependence on N-glycosylation. The presence of at least one glycan on each of its two extracellular domains, the vWA and Ig-like domains, is indeed necessary for efficient trafficking to the cell surface. In the absence of any N-linked glycans, TEM8 fails to fold correctly and is recognized by the ER quality control machinery. Expression of N-glycosylation mutants reveals that CMG2 is less vulnerable to sugar loss. The absence of N-linked glycans in one of the extracellular domains indeed has little impact on folding, trafficking or receptor function of the wild type protein expressed in tissue culture cells. N-glycans do, however, seem required in primary fibroblasts from human patients. Here, the presence of N-linked sugars increases the tolerance to mutations in cmg2 causing the rare genetic disease Hyaline Fibromatosis Syndrome. It thus appears that CMG2 glycosylation provides a buffer towards genetic variation by promoting folding of the protein in the ER lumen.

  4. Immunization of Mice with Anthrax Protective Antigen Limits Cardiotoxicity but Not Hepatotoxicity Following Lethal Toxin Challenge

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    T. Scott Devera

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available Protective immunity against anthrax is inferred from measurement of vaccine antigen-specific neutralizing antibody titers in serum samples. In animal models, in vivo challenges with toxin and/or spores can also be performed. However, neither of these approaches considers toxin-induced damage to specific organ systems. It is therefore important to determine to what extent anthrax vaccines and existing or candidate adjuvants can provide organ-specific protection against intoxication. We therefore compared the ability of Alum, CpG DNA and the CD1d ligand α-galactosylceramide (αGC to enhance protective antigen-specific antibody titers, to protect mice against challenge with lethal toxin, and to block cardiotoxicity and hepatotoxicity. By measurement of serum cardiac Troponin I (cTnI, and hepatic alanine aminotransferase (ALT, and aspartate aminotransferase (AST, it was apparent that neither vaccine modality prevented hepatic intoxication, despite high Ab titers and ultimate survival of the subject. In contrast, cardiotoxicity was greatly diminished by prior immunization. This shows that a vaccine that confers survival following toxin exposure may still have an associated morbidity. We propose that organ-specific intoxication should be monitored routinely during research into new vaccine modalities.

  5. The Disulfide Bond Cys255-Cys279 in the Immunoglobulin-Like Domain of Anthrax Toxin Receptor 2 Is Required for Membrane Insertion of Anthrax Protective Antigen Pore.

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    Pedro Jacquez

    Full Text Available Anthrax toxin receptors act as molecular clamps or switches that control anthrax toxin entry, pH-dependent pore formation, and translocation of enzymatic moieties across the endosomal membranes. We previously reported that reduction of the disulfide bonds in the immunoglobulin-like (Ig domain of the anthrax toxin receptor 2 (ANTXR2 inhibited the function of the protective antigen (PA pore. In the present study, the disulfide linkage in the Ig domain was identified as Cys255-Cys279 and Cys230-Cys315. Specific disulfide bond deletion mutants were achieved by replacing Cys residues with Ala residues. Deletion of the disulfide bond C255-C279, but not C230-C315, inhibited the PA pore-induced release of the fluorescence dyes from the liposomes, suggesting that C255-C279 is essential for PA pore function. Furthermore, we found that deletion of C255-C279 did not affect PA prepore-to-pore conversion, but inhibited PA pore membrane insertion by trapping the PA membrane-inserting loops in proteinaceous hydrophobic pockets. Fluorescence spectra of Trp59, a residue adjacent to the PA-binding motif in von Willebrand factor A (VWA domain of ANTXR2, showed that deletion of C255-C279 resulted in a significant conformational change on the receptor ectodomain. The disulfide deletion-induced conformational change on the VWA domain was further confirmed by single-particle 3D reconstruction of the negatively stained PA-receptor heptameric complexes. Together, the biochemical and structural data obtained in this study provides a mechanistic insight into the role of the receptor disulfide bond C255-C279 in anthrax toxin action. Manipulation of the redox states of the receptor, specifically targeting to C255-C279, may become a novel strategy to treat anthrax.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Xia; Amin, Elizabeth Ambrose

    2016-01-01

    Anthrax is a highly lethal, acute infectious disease caused by the rod-shaped, Gram-positive bacterium Bacillus anthracis. The anthrax toxin lethal factor (LF), a zinc metalloprotease secreted by the bacilli, plays a key role in anthrax pathogenesis and is chiefly responsible for anthrax-related toxemia and host death, partly via inactivation of mitogen-activated protein kinase kinase (MAPKK) enzymes and consequent disruption of key cellular signaling pathways. Antibiotics such as fluoroquinolones are capable of clearing the bacilli but have no effect on LF-mediated toxemia; LF itself therefore remains the preferred target for toxin inactivation. However, currently no LF inhibitor is available on the market as a therapeutic, partly due to the insufficiency of existing LF inhibitor scaffolds in terms of efficacy, selectivity, and toxicity. In the current work, we present novel support vector machine (SVM) models with high prediction accuracy that are designed to rapidly identify potential novel, structurally diverse LF inhibitor chemical matter from compound libraries. These SVM models were trained and validated using 508 compounds with published LF biological activity data and 847 inactive compounds deposited in the Pub Chem BioAssay database. One model, M1, demonstrated particularly favorable selectivity toward highly active compounds by correctly predicting 39 (95.12%) out of 41 nanomolar-level LF inhibitors, 46 (93.88%) out of 49 inactives, and 844 (99.65%) out of 847 Pub Chem inactives in external, unbiased test sets. These models are expected to facilitate the prediction of LF inhibitory activity for existing molecules, as well as identification of novel potential LF inhibitors from large datasets. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  7. Crystallization and preliminary X-ray analysis of the vWA domain of human anthrax toxin receptor 1

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Cai, Chenguang; Zhao, Ying; Tong, Xiaohang; Fu, Sheng; Li, Yuanyuan; Wu, Yang; Li, Xumei; Lou, Zhiyong

    2010-01-01

    The vWA domain of human anthrax toxin receptor 1 was overexpressed in E. coli, purified and crystallized. Diffraction data were collected to 1.8 Å resolution. The Gram-positive spore-forming bacterium Bacillus anthracis causes anthrax by secreting anthrax toxin, which consists of protective antigen (PA), lethal factor and oedema factor. Binding of PA to receptors triggers the multi-step process of anthrax toxin entry into target cells. Two distinct cellular receptors, ANTXR1 (also known as tumour endothelial marker 8; TEM8) and ANTXR2 (also known as capillary morphogenesis protein 2; CMG2), for anthrax toxin have been identified. Although the crystal structure of the extracellular von Willebrand factor A (vWA) domain of CMG2 has been reported, the difference between the vWA domains of TEM8 and CMG2 remains unclear because there are no structural data for the TEM8 vWA domain. In this report, the TEM8 vWA domain was expressed, purified and crystallized. X-ray diffraction data were collected to 1.8 Å resolution from a single crystal, which belonged to space group P1 with unit-cell parameters a = 65.9, b = 66.1, c = 74.4 Å, α = 63.7, β = 88.2, γ = 59.9°

  8. Impact of Dendrimer Terminal Group Chemistry on Blockage of the Anthrax Toxin Channel: A Single Molecule Study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yamini, Goli; Kalu, Nnanya; Nestorovich, Ekaterina M

    2016-11-15

    Nearly all the cationic molecules tested so far have been shown to reversibly block K⁺ current through the cation-selective PA 63 channels of anthrax toxin in a wide nM-mM range of effective concentrations. A significant increase in channel-blocking activity of the cationic compounds was achieved when multiple copies of positively charged ligands were covalently linked to multivalent scaffolds, such as cyclodextrins and dendrimers. Even though multivalent binding can be strong when the individual bonds are relatively weak, for drug discovery purposes we often strive to design multivalent compounds with high individual functional group affinity toward the respective binding site on a multivalent target. Keeping this requirement in mind, here we perform a single-channel/single-molecule study to investigate kinetic parameters of anthrax toxin PA 63 channel blockage by second-generation (G2) poly(amido amine) (PAMAM) dendrimers functionalized with different surface ligands, including G2-NH₂, G2-OH, G2-succinamate, and G2-COONa. We found that the previously reported difference in IC 50 values of the G2-OH/PA 63 and G2-NH₂/PA 63 binding was determined by both on- and off-rates of the reversible dendrimer/channel binding reaction. In 1 M KCl, we observed a decrease of about three folds in k o n and a decrease of only about ten times in t r e s with G2-OH compared to G2-NH₂. At the same time for both blockers, k o n and t r e s increased dramatically with transmembrane voltage increase. PAMAM dendrimers functionalized with negatively charged succinamate, but not carboxyl surface groups, still had some residual activity in inhibiting the anthrax toxin channels. At 100 mV, the on-rate of the G2-succinamate binding was comparable with that of G2-OH but showed weaker voltage dependence when compared to G2-OH and G2-NH₂. The residence time of G2-succinamate in the channel exhibited opposite voltage dependence compared to G2-OH and G2-NH₂, increasing with the cis

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kandadi, Machender R; Yu, Xuejun; Frankel, Arthur E; Ren, Jun

    2012-11-07

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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kandadi Machender R

    2012-11-01

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

  11. Noninvasive imaging technologies reveal edema toxin as a key virulence factor in anthrax.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dumetz, Fabien; Jouvion, Grégory; Khun, Huot; Glomski, Ian Justin; Corre, Jean-Philippe; Rougeaux, Clémence; Tang, Wei-Jen; Mock, Michèle; Huerre, Michel; Goossens, Pierre Louis

    2011-06-01

    Powerful noninvasive imaging technologies enable real-time tracking of pathogen-host interactions in vivo, giving access to previously elusive events. We visualized the interactions between wild-type Bacillus anthracis and its host during a spore infection through bioluminescence imaging coupled with histology. We show that edema toxin plays a central role in virulence in guinea pigs and during inhalational infection in mice. Edema toxin (ET), but not lethal toxin (LT), markedly modified the patterns of bacterial dissemination leading, to apparent direct dissemination to the spleen and provoking apoptosis of lymphoid cells. Each toxin alone provoked particular histological lesions in the spleen. When ET and LT are produced together during infection, a specific temporal pattern of lesion developed, with early lesions typical of LT, followed at a later stage by lesions typical of ET. Our study provides new insights into the complex spatial and temporal effects of B. anthracis toxins in the infected host, suggesting a greater role than previously suspected for ET in anthrax and suggesting that therapeutic targeting of ET contributes to protection. Copyright © 2011 American Society for Investigative Pathology. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chen Sun

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

  13. Functions of phenylalanine residues within the beta-barrel stem of the anthrax toxin pore.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jie Wang

    2009-07-01

    Full Text Available A key step of anthrax toxin action involves the formation of a protein-translocating pore within the endosomal membrane by the Protective Antigen (PA moiety. Formation of this transmembrane pore by PA involves interaction of the seven 2beta2-2beta3 loops of the heptameric precursor to generate a 14-strand transmembrane beta barrel.We examined the effects on pore formation, protein translocation, and cytotoxicity, of mutating two phenylalanines, F313 and F314, that lie at the tip the beta barrel, and a third one, F324, that lies part way up the barrel.Our results show that the function of these phenylalanine residues is to mediate membrane insertion and formation of stable transmembrane channels. Unlike F427, a key luminal residue in the cap of the pore, F313, F314, and F324 do not directly affect protein translocation through the pore. Our findings add to our knowledge of structure-function relationships of a key virulence factor of the anthrax bacillus.

  14. In vitro evaluation, biodistribution and scintigraphic imaging in mice of radiolabeled anthrax toxins

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Dadachova, Ekaterina; Rivera, Johanna; Revskaya, Ekaterina; Nakouzi, Antonio; Cahill, Sean M.; Blumenstein, Michael; Xiao, Hui; Rykunov, Dmitry; Casadevall, Arturo

    2008-01-01

    Introduction: There is a lot of interest towards creating therapies and vaccines for Bacillus anthracis, a bacterium which causes anthrax in humans and which spores can be made into potent biological weapons. Systemic injection of lethal factor (LF), edema factor (EF) and protective antigen (PA) in mice produces toxicity, and this protocol is commonly used to investigate the efficacy of specific antibodies in passive protection and vaccine studies. Availability of toxins labeled with imageable radioisotopes would allow to demonstrate their tissue distribution after intravenous injection at toxin concentration that are below pharmacologically significant to avoid masking by toxic effects. Methods: LF, EF and PA were radiolabeled with 188 Re and 99m Tc, and their performance in vitro was evaluated by macrophages and Chinese hamster ovary cells toxicity assays and by binding to macrophages. Scintigraphic imaging and biodistribution of intravenously (IV) injected 99m Tc-and 123 I-labeled toxins was performed in BALB/c mice. Results: Radiolabeled toxins preserved their biological activity. Scatchard-type analysis of the binding of radiolabeled PA to the J774.16 macrophage-like cells revealed 6.6x10 4 binding sites per cell with a dissociation constant of 6.7 nM. Comparative scintigraphic imaging of mice injected intravenously with either 99m Tc-or 123 I-labeled PA, EF and LF toxins demonstrated similar biodistribution patterns with early localization of radioactivity in the liver, spleen, intestines and excretion through kidneys. The finding of renal excretion shortly after IV injection strongly suggests that toxins are rapidly degraded which could contribute to the variability of mouse toxigenic assays. Biodistribution studies confirmed that all three toxins concentrated in the liver and the presence of high levels of radioactivity again implied rapid degradation in vivo. Conclusions: The availability of 188 Re and 99m Tc-labeled PA, LF and EF toxins allowed us to

  15. Regulatory mechanisms of anthrax toxin receptor 1-dependent vascular and connective tissue homeostasis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Besschetnova, Tatiana Y; Ichimura, Takaharu; Katebi, Negin; St Croix, Brad; Bonventre, Joseph V; Olsen, Bjorn R

    2015-03-01

    It is well known that angiogenesis is linked to fibrotic processes in fibroproliferative diseases, but insights into pathophysiological processes are limited, due to lack of understanding of molecular mechanisms controlling endothelial and fibroblastic homeostasis. We demonstrate here that the matrix receptor anthrax toxin receptor 1 (ANTXR1), also known as tumor endothelial marker 8 (TEM8), is an essential component of these mechanisms. Loss of TEM8 function in mice causes reduced synthesis of endothelial basement membrane components and hyperproliferative and leaky blood vessels in skin. In addition, endothelial cell alterations in mutants are almost identical to those of endothelial cells in infantile hemangioma lesions, including activated VEGF receptor signaling in endothelial cells, increased expression of the downstream targets VEGF and CXCL12, and increased numbers of macrophages and mast cells. In contrast, loss of TEM8 in fibroblasts leads to increased rates of synthesis of fiber-forming collagens, resulting in progressive fibrosis in skin and other organs. Compromised interactions between TEM8-deficient endothelial and fibroblastic cells cause dramatic reduction in the activity of the matrix-degrading enzyme MMP2. In addition to insights into mechanisms of connective tissue homeostasis, our data provide molecular explanations for vascular and connective tissue abnormalities in GAPO syndrome, caused by loss-of-function mutations in ANTXR1. Furthermore, the loss of MMP2 activity suggests that fibrotic skin abnormalities in GAPO syndrome are, in part, the consequence of pathophysiological mechanisms underlying syndromes (NAO, Torg and Winchester) with multicentric skin nodulosis and osteolysis caused by homozygous loss-of-function mutations in MMP2. Copyright © 2014 International Society of Matrix Biology. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  16. Antibodies to Anthrax Toxin in Humans and Guinea Pigs and Their Relevance to Protective Immunity

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Turnbull, P

    1988-01-01

    ... stimulation of more than just production of antibody to PA. Titers to the three components in sera of individuals with histories of clinically diagnosed anthrax as well as from human vaccinees are included in the report.

  17. Genetically modified anthrax lethal toxin safely delivers whole HIV protein antigens into the cytosol to induce T cell immunity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lu, Yichen; Friedman, Rachel; Kushner, Nicholas; Doling, Amy; Thomas, Lawrence; Touzjian, Neal; Starnbach, Michael; Lieberman, Judy

    2000-07-01

    Bacillus anthrax lethal toxin can be engineered to deliver foreign proteins to the cytosol for antigen presentation to CD8 T cells. Vaccination with modified toxins carrying 8-9 amino acid peptide epitopes induces protective immunity in mice. To evaluate whether large protein antigens can be used with this system, recombinant constructs encoding several HIV antigens up to 500 amino acids were produced. These candidate HIV vaccines are safe in animals and induce CD8 T cells in mice. Constructs encoding gag p24 and nef stimulate gag-specific CD4 proliferation and a secondary cytotoxic T lymphocyte response in HIV-infected donor peripheral blood mononuclear cells in vitro. These results lay the foundation for future clinical vaccine studies.

  18. Tumor therapy with a urokinase plasminogen activator-activated anthrax lethal toxin alone and in combination with paclitaxel.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wein, Alexander N; Liu, Shihui; Zhang, Yi; McKenzie, Andrew T; Leppla, Stephen H

    2013-02-01

    PA-U2, an engineered anthrax protective antigen that is activated by urokinase was combined with wildtype lethal factor in the treatment of Colo205 colon adenocarcinoma in vitro and B16-BL6 mouse melanoma in vitro and in vivo. This therapy was also tested in combination with the small molecule paclitaxel, based on prior reports suggesting synergy between ERK1/2 inhibition and chemotherapeutics. Colo205 was sensitive to PA-U2/LF while B16-BL6 was not. For the combination treatment of B16-BL6, paclitaxel showed a dose response in vitro, but cells remained resistant to PA-U2/LF even in the presence of paclitaxel. In vivo, each therapy slowed tumor progression, and an additive effect between the two was observed. Since LF targets tumor vasculature while paclitaxel is an antimitotic, it is possible the agents were acting against different cells in the stroma, precluding a synergistic effect. The engineered anthrax toxin PA-U2/LF warrants further development and testing, possibly in combination with an antiangiogenesis therapy such as sunitinib or sorafinib.

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

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

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

    2016-07-05

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

  20. A Dual Role for the Bacillus anthracis Master Virulence Regulator AtxA: Control of Sporulation and Anthrax Toxin Production.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dale, Jennifer L; Raynor, Malik J; Ty, Maureen C; Hadjifrangiskou, Maria; Koehler, Theresa M

    2018-01-01

    Bacillus anthracis is an endemic soil bacterium that exhibits two different lifestyles. In the soil environment, B. anthracis undergoes a cycle of saprophytic growth, sporulation, and germination. In mammalian hosts, the pathogenic lifestyle of B. anthracis is spore germination followed by vegetative cell replication, but cells do not sporulate. During infection, and in specific culture conditions, transcription of the structural genes for the anthrax toxin proteins and the biosynthetic operon for capsule synthesis is positively controlled by the regulatory protein AtxA. A critical role for the atxA gene in B. anthracis virulence has been established. Here we report an inverse relationship between toxin production and sporulation that is linked to AtxA levels. During culture in conditions favoring sporulation, B. anthracis produces little to no AtxA. When B. anthracis is cultured in conditions favoring toxin gene expression, AtxA is expressed at relatively high levels and sporulation rate and efficiency are reduced. We found that a mutation within the atxA promoter region resulting in AtxA over-expression leads to a marked sporulation defect. The sporulation phenotype of the mutant is dependent upon pXO2-0075 , an atxA -regulated open reading frame located on virulence plasmid pXO2. The predicted amino acid sequence of the pXO2-0075 protein has similarity to the sensor domain of sporulation sensor histidine kinases. It was shown previously that pXO2-0075 overexpression suppresses sporulation. We have designated pXO2-0075 " skiA " for "sporulation kinase inhibitor." Our results indicate that in addition to serving as a positive regulator of virulence gene expression, AtxA modulates B. anthracis development.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2014-02-14

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

  2. Anthrax: Diagnosis

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... Diagnosis Language: English (US) Español (Spanish) Recommend on Facebook Tweet Share Compartir Doctors in the United States rarely see a patient with anthrax. CDC Guidance and case definitions are available to help doctors diagnose anthrax, take ...

  3. Tumor therapy with a urokinase plasminogen activator-activated anthrax lethal toxin alone and in combination with paclitaxel

    OpenAIRE

    Wein, Alexander N.; Liu, Shihui; Zhang, Yi; McKenzie, Andrew T.; Leppla, Stephen H.

    2012-01-01

    PA-U2, an engineered anthrax protective antigen that is activated by urokinase was combined with wild-type lethal factor in the treatment of Colo205 colon adenocarcinoma in vitro and B16-BL6 mouse melanoma in vitro and in vivo. This therapy was also tested in combination with the small molecule paclitaxel, based on prior reports suggesting synergy between ERK1/2 inhibition and chemotherapeutics. Colo205 was sensitive to PA-U2/LF while B16-BL6 was not. For the combination treatment of B16-BL6,...

  4. Anthrax Remembered

    Centers for Disease Control (CDC) Podcasts

    2015-08-03

    Dr. John Jernigan and Dr. D. Peter Drotman recall the 2001 anthrax attacks and rapid publication of the landmark paper reporting the initial cases of inhalational anthrax.  Created: 8/3/2015 by National Center for Emerging and Zoonotic Infectious Diseases (NCEZID).   Date Released: 8/3/2015.

  5. A modified anthrax toxin-based enzyme-linked immunospot assay reveals robust T cell responses in symptomatic and asymptomatic Ebola virus exposed individuals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Herrera, Bobby Brooke; Hamel, Donald J; Oshun, Philip; Akinsola, Rolake; Akanmu, Alani S; Chang, Charlotte A; Eromon, Philomena; Folarin, Onikepe; Adeyemi, Kayode T; Happi, Christian T; Lu, Yichen; Ogunsola, Folasade; Kanki, Phyllis J

    2018-05-01

    Ebola virus (EBOV) caused more than 11,000 deaths during the 2013-2016 epidemic in West Africa without approved vaccines or immunotherapeutics. Despite its high lethality in some individuals, EBOV infection can produce little to no symptoms in others. A better understanding of the immune responses in individuals who experienced minimally symptomatic and asymptomatic infection could aid the development of more effective vaccines and antivirals against EBOV and related filoviruses. Between August and November 2017, blood samples were collected from 19 study participants in Lagos, Nigeria, including 3 Ebola virus disease (EVD) survivors, 10 individuals with documented close contact with symptomatic EVD patients, and 6 control healthcare workers for a cross-sectional serosurvey and T cell analysis. The Lagos samples, as well as archived serum collected from healthy individuals living in surrounding areas of the 1976 Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) epidemic, were tested for EBOV IgG using commercial enzyme-linked immunosorbent assays (ELISAs) and Western blots. We detected antibodies in 3 out of 3 Lagos survivors and identified 2 seropositive individuals not known to have ever been infected. Of the DRC samples tested, we detected antibodies in 9 out of 71 (12.7%). To characterize the T cell responses in the Lagos samples, we developed an anthrax toxin-based enzyme-linked immunospot (ELISPOT) assay. The seropositive asymptomatic individuals had T cell responses against EBOV nucleoprotein, matrix protein, and glycoprotein 1 that were stronger in magnitude compared to the survivors. Our data provide further evidence of EBOV exposure in individuals without EVD-like illness and, for the first time, demonstrate that these individuals have T cell responses that are stronger in magnitude compared to severe cases. These findings suggest that T cell immunity may protect against severe EVD, which has important implications for vaccine development.

  6. Anthrax blood test

    Science.gov (United States)

    Anthrax serology test; Antibody test for anthrax; Serologic test for B. anthracis ... This test may be performed when the health care provider suspects you have anthrax infection. The bacteria that cause ...

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2007-01-01

    The recent use of Bacillus anthracis as a bioweapon has stimulated the search for novel antitoxins and vaccines that act rapidly and with minimal adverse effects. B. anthracis produces an AB-type toxin composed of the receptor-binding moiety protective antigen (PA) and the enzymatic moieties edema factor and lethal factor. PA is a key target for both antitoxin and vaccine development. We used the icosahedral insect virus Flock House virus as a platform to display 180 copies of the high affinity, PA-binding von Willebrand A domain of the ANTXR2 cellular receptor. The chimeric virus-like particles (VLPs) correctly displayed the receptor von Willebrand A domain on their surface and inhibited lethal toxin action in in vitro and in vivo models of anthrax intoxication. Moreover, VLPs complexed with PA elicited a potent toxin-neutralizing antibody response that protected rats from anthrax lethal toxin challenge after a single immunization without adjuvant. This recombinant VLP platform represents a novel and highly effective, dually-acting reagent for treatment and protection against anthrax. PMID:17922572

  8. Effective antiprotease-antibiotic treatment of experimental anthrax

    OpenAIRE

    Popov, Serguei G; Popova, Taissia G; Hopkins, Svetlana; Weinstein, Raymond S; MacAfee, Rebecca; Fryxell, Karl J; Chandhoke, Vikas; Bailey, Charles; Alibek, Ken

    2005-01-01

    Abstract Background Inhalation anthrax is characterized by a systemic spread of the challenge agent, Bacillus anthracis. It causes severe damage, including multiple hemorrhagic lesions, to host tissues and organs. It is widely believed that anthrax lethal toxin secreted by proliferating bacteria is a major cause of death, however, the pathology of intoxication in experimental animals is drastically different from that found during the infectious process. In order to close a gap between our un...

  9. Serology and anthrax in humans, livestock and Etosha National Park wildlife.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Turnbull, P C; Doganay, M; Lindeque, P M; Aygen, B; McLaughlin, J

    1992-04-01

    Results are presented from a number of epidemiological studies using enzyme immunoassays (EIA) based on the purified anthrax toxin antigens, protective antigen, lethal factor and oedema factor. Studies on sera from a group of 62 human anthrax patients in Turkey and from cattle in Britain following two unrelated outbreaks of anthrax show that EIA using protective antigen can be a useful diagnostic aid and will detect subclinical infections in appropriate circumstances. A serological survey on wildlife in the Etosha National Park, Namibia, where anthrax is endemic, showed that naturally acquired anthrax-specific antibodies are rare in herbivores but common in carnivores; in carnivores, titres appear to reflect the prevalence of anthrax in their ranges. Problems, as yet unresolved, were encountered in studies on sera from pigs following an outbreak of anthrax on a farm in Wales. Clinical details, including treatment, of the human and one of the bovine outbreaks are summarized and discussed in relation to the serological findings.

  10. A 2011 Risk/Benefit Analysis of the Anthrax Vaccine Immunization Program

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-06-10

    filled with botulinum toxin, 10 with anthrax, and 2 with aflatoxin.‖18 In 1992, Ken Alibek, a senior Russian bioweapons program manager defected...William K. Honner, Rosha A. Loach , Cynthia A. Moore, and J. David Erickson. ―Birth Defects Among Infants Born to Women Who Received Anthrax Vaccine In

  11. Small molecule inhibitors of anthrax edema factor.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jiao, Guan-Sheng; Kim, Seongjin; Moayeri, Mahtab; Thai, April; Cregar-Hernandez, Lynne; McKasson, Linda; O'Malley, Sean; Leppla, Stephen H; Johnson, Alan T

    2018-01-15

    Anthrax is a highly lethal disease caused by the Gram-(+) bacteria Bacillus anthracis. Edema toxin (ET) is a major contributor to the pathogenesis of disease in humans exposed to B. anthracis. ET is a bipartite toxin composed of two proteins secreted by the vegetative bacteria, edema factor (EF) and protective antigen (PA). Our work towards identifying a small molecule inhibitor of anthrax edema factor is the subject of this letter. First we demonstrate that the small molecule probe 5'-Fluorosulfonylbenzoyl 5'-adenosine (FSBA) reacts irreversibly with EF and blocks enzymatic activity. We then show that the adenosine portion of FSBA can be replaced to provide more drug-like molecules which are up to 1000-fold more potent against EF relative to FSBA, display low cross reactivity when tested against a panel of kinases, and are nanomolar inhibitors of EF in a cell-based assay of cAMP production. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  12. Tarantula toxins use common surfaces for interacting with Kv and ASIC ion channels.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gupta, Kanchan; Zamanian, Maryam; Bae, Chanhyung; Milescu, Mirela; Krepkiy, Dmitriy; Tilley, Drew C; Sack, Jon T; Yarov-Yarovoy, Vladimir; Kim, Jae Il; Swartz, Kenton J

    2015-05-07

    Tarantula toxins that bind to voltage-sensing domains of voltage-activated ion channels are thought to partition into the membrane and bind to the channel within the bilayer. While no structures of a voltage-sensor toxin bound to a channel have been solved, a structural homolog, psalmotoxin (PcTx1), was recently crystalized in complex with the extracellular domain of an acid sensing ion channel (ASIC). In the present study we use spectroscopic, biophysical and computational approaches to compare membrane interaction properties and channel binding surfaces of PcTx1 with the voltage-sensor toxin guangxitoxin (GxTx-1E). Our results show that both types of tarantula toxins interact with membranes, but that voltage-sensor toxins partition deeper into the bilayer. In addition, our results suggest that tarantula toxins have evolved a similar concave surface for clamping onto α-helices that is effective in aqueous or lipidic physical environments.

  13. A FRET-based high throughput screening assay to identify inhibitors of anthrax protective antigen binding to capillary morphogenesis gene 2 protein.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michael S Rogers

    Full Text Available Anti-angiogenic therapies are effective for the treatment of cancer, a variety of ocular diseases, and have potential benefits in cardiovascular disease, arthritis, and psoriasis. We have previously shown that anthrax protective antigen (PA, a non-pathogenic component of anthrax toxin, is an inhibitor of angiogenesis, apparently as a result of interaction with the cell surface receptors capillary morphogenesis gene 2 (CMG2 protein and tumor endothelial marker 8 (TEM8. Hence, molecules that bind the anthrax toxin receptors may be effective to slow or halt pathological vascular growth. Here we describe development and testing of an effective homogeneous steady-state fluorescence resonance energy transfer (FRET high throughput screening assay designed to identify molecules that inhibit binding of PA to CMG2. Molecules identified in the screen can serve as potential lead compounds for the development of anti-angiogenic and anti-anthrax therapies. The assay to screen for inhibitors of this protein-protein interaction is sensitive and robust, with observed Z' values as high as 0.92. Preliminary screens conducted with a library of known bioactive compounds identified tannic acid and cisplatin as inhibitors of the PA-CMG2 interaction. We have confirmed that tannic acid both binds CMG2 and has anti-endothelial properties. In contrast, cisplatin appears to inhibit PA-CMG2 interaction by binding both PA and CMG2, and observed cisplatin anti-angiogenic effects are not mediated by interaction with CMG2. This work represents the first reported high throughput screening assay targeting CMG2 to identify possible inhibitors of both angiogenesis and anthrax intoxication.

  14. Binding modes and functional surface of anti-mammalian scorpion α-toxins to sodium channels.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Rong; Chung, Shin-Ho

    2012-10-02

    Scorpion α-toxins bind to the voltage-sensing domains of voltage-gated sodium (Na(V)) channels and interfere with the inactivation mechanisms. The functional surface of α-toxins has been shown to contain an NC-domain consisting of the five-residue turn (positions 8-12) and the C-terminus (positions 56-64) and a core-domain centered on the residue 18. The NC- and core-domains are interconnected by the linker-domain (positions 8-18). Here with atomistic molecular dynamics simulations, we examine the binding modes between two α-toxins, the anti-mammalian AahII and the anti-insect LqhαIT, and the voltage-sensing domain of rat Na(V)1.2, a subtype of Na(V) channels expressed in nerve cells. Both toxins are docked to the extracellular side of the voltage-sensing domain of Na(V)1.2 using molecular dynamics simulations, with the linker-domain assumed to wedge into the binding pocket. Several salt bridges and hydrophobic clusters are observed to form between the NC- and core-domains of the toxins and Na(V)1.2 and stabilize the toxin-channel complexes. The binding modes predicted are consistent with available mutagenesis data and can readily explain the relative affinities of AahII and LqhαIT for Na(V)1.2. The dissociation constants for the two toxin-channel complexes are derived, which compare favorably with experiment. Our models demonstrate that the functional surface of anti-mammalian scorpion α-toxins is centered on the linker-domain, similar to that of β-toxins.

  15. Effective antiprotease-antibiotic treatment of experimental anthrax

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    MacAfee Rebecca

    2005-04-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Inhalation anthrax is characterized by a systemic spread of the challenge agent, Bacillus anthracis. It causes severe damage, including multiple hemorrhagic lesions, to host tissues and organs. It is widely believed that anthrax lethal toxin secreted by proliferating bacteria is a major cause of death, however, the pathology of intoxication in experimental animals is drastically different from that found during the infectious process. In order to close a gap between our understanding of anthrax molecular pathology and the most prominent clinical features of the infectious process we undertook bioinformatic and experimental analyses of potential proteolytic virulence factors of B. anthracis distinct from lethal toxin. Methods Secreted proteins (other than lethal and edema toxins produced by B. anthracis were tested for tissue-damaging activity and toxicity in mice. Chemical protease inhibitors and rabbit immune sera raised against B. anthracis proteases were used to treat mice challenged with B. anthracis (Sterne spores. Results B. anthracis strain delta Ames (pXO1-, pXO2- producing no lethal and edema toxins secrets a number of metalloprotease virulence factors upon cultivation under aerobic conditions, including those with hemorrhagic, caseinolytic and collagenolytic activities, belonging to M4 and M9 thermolysin and bacterial collagenase families, respectively. These factors are directly toxic to DBA/2 mice upon intratracheal administration at 0.5 mg/kg and higher doses. Chemical protease inhibitors (phosphoramidon and 1, 10-phenanthroline, as well as immune sera against M4 and M9 proteases of B. anthracis, were used to treat mice challenged with B. anthracis (Sterne spores. These substances demonstrate a substantial protective efficacy in combination with ciprofloxacin therapy initiated as late as 48 h post spore challenge, compared to the antibiotic alone. Conclusion Secreted proteolytic enzymes are important pathogenic

  16. Mechanism of Diphtheria Toxin Catalytic Domain Delivery to the Eukaryotic Cell Cytosol and the Cellular Factors that Directly Participate in the Process

    Science.gov (United States)

    Murphy, John R.

    2011-01-01

    Research on diphtheria and anthrax toxins over the past three decades has culminated in a detailed understanding of their structure function relationships (e.g., catalytic (C), transmembrane (T), and receptor binding (R) domains), as well as the identification of their eukaryotic cell surface receptor, an understanding of the molecular events leading to the receptor-mediated internalization of the toxin into an endosomal compartment, and the pH triggered conformational changes required for pore formation in the vesicle membrane. Recently, a major research effort has been focused on the development of a detailed understanding of the molecular interactions between each of these toxins and eukaryotic cell factors that play an essential role in the efficient translocation of their respective catalytic domains through the trans-endosomal vesicle membrane pore and delivery into the cell cytosol. In this review, I shall focus on recent findings that have led to a more detailed understanding of the mechanism by which the diphtheria toxin catalytic domain is delivered to the eukaryotic cell cytosol. While much work remains, it is becoming increasingly clear that the entry process is facilitated by specific interactions with a number of cellular factors in an ordered sequential fashion. In addition, since diphtheria, anthrax lethal factor and anthrax edema factor all carry multiple coatomer I complex binding motifs and COPI complex has been shown to play an essential role in entry process, it is likely that the initial steps in catalytic domain entry of these divergent toxins follow a common mechanism. PMID:22069710

  17. Anthrax of the eyelids.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Amraoui, A.; Tabbara, K. F.; Zaghloul, K.

    1992-01-01

    Anthrax is a disease caused by Bacillus anthracis. The disease affects primarily herbivores including sheep, cattle, horses, and other domestic animals. Humans may rarely be affected. We examined one male and two female patients with a localised itchy erythematous papule of the eyelid. A necrotising ulcer formed in each of the three cases resulting in a black lesion. Scraping in each case showed Gram positive rods and culture grew Bacillus anthracis. All three patients responded to the intravenous administration of penicillin G, and the lesion resolved leaving scars in two cases. Anthrax is a rare disease but should be considered in the differential diagnosis of ulcers or pustules of the eyelids. Images PMID:1486081

  18. [Anthrax due to deliberate infection

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Dissel, J.T. van; Kullberg, B.J.; Berg, P.C. van den; Steenbergen, J.E. van

    2001-01-01

    Anthrax is a zoonosis which is particularly prevalent in cattle, goats and sheep and is caused by Bacillus anthracis, a Gram-positive spore forming aerobic microorganism. The endospores can survive outside of the body for many decades. The natural form of anthrax has a cutaneous, pulmonary and

  19. Cigarette smoke toxins deposited on surfaces: implications for human health.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Manuela Martins-Green

    Full Text Available Cigarette smoking remains a significant health threat for smokers and nonsmokers alike. Secondhand smoke (SHS is intrinsically more toxic than directly inhaled smoke. Recently, a new threat has been discovered - Thirdhand smoke (THS - the accumulation of SHS on surfaces that ages with time, becoming progressively more toxic. THS is a potential health threat to children, spouses of smokers and workers in environments where smoking is or has been allowed. The goal of this study is to investigate the effects of THS on liver, lung, skin healing, and behavior, using an animal model exposed to THS under conditions that mimic exposure of humans. THS-exposed mice show alterations in multiple organ systems and excrete levels of NNAL (a tobacco-specific carcinogen biomarker similar to those found in children exposed to SHS (and consequently to THS. In liver, THS leads to increased lipid levels and non-alcoholic fatty liver disease, a precursor to cirrhosis and cancer and a potential contributor to cardiovascular disease. In lung, THS stimulates excess collagen production and high levels of inflammatory cytokines, suggesting propensity for fibrosis with implications for inflammation-induced diseases such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and asthma. In wounded skin, healing in THS-exposed mice has many characteristics of the poor healing of surgical incisions observed in human smokers. Lastly, behavioral tests show that THS-exposed mice become hyperactive. The latter data, combined with emerging associated behavioral problems in children exposed to SHS/THS, suggest that, with prolonged exposure, they may be at significant risk for developing more severe neurological disorders. These results provide a basis for studies on the toxic effects of THS in humans and inform potential regulatory policies to prevent involuntary exposure to THS.

  20. A Biologically-Based Computational Approach to Drug Repurposing for Anthrax Infection

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jane P. F. Bai

    2017-03-01

    Full Text Available Developing drugs to treat the toxic effects of lethal toxin (LT and edema toxin (ET produced by B. anthracis is of global interest. We utilized a computational approach to score 474 drugs/compounds for their ability to reverse the toxic effects of anthrax toxins. For each toxin or drug/compound, we constructed an activity network by using its differentially expressed genes, molecular targets, and protein interactions. Gene expression profiles of drugs were obtained from the Connectivity Map and those of anthrax toxins in human alveolar macrophages were obtained from the Gene Expression Omnibus. Drug rankings were based on the ability of a drug/compound’s mode of action in the form of a signaling network to reverse the effects of anthrax toxins; literature reports were used to verify the top 10 and bottom 10 drugs/compounds identified. Simvastatin and bepridil with reported in vitro potency for protecting cells from LT and ET toxicities were computationally ranked fourth and eighth. The other top 10 drugs were fenofibrate, dihydroergotamine, cotinine, amantadine, mephenytoin, sotalol, ifosfamide, and mefloquine; literature mining revealed their potential protective effects from LT and ET toxicities. These drugs are worthy of investigation for their therapeutic benefits and might be used in combination with antibiotics for treating B. anthracis infection.

  1. Role of the Antigen Capture Pathway in the Induction of a Neutralizing Antibody Response to Anthrax Protective Antigen

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anita Verma

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available Toxin neutralizing antibodies represent the major mode of protective immunity against a number of toxin-mediated bacterial diseases, including anthrax; however, the cellular mechanisms that lead to optimal neutralizing antibody responses remain ill defined. Here we show that the cellular binding pathway of anthrax protective antigen (PA, the binding component of anthrax toxin, determines the toxin neutralizing antibody response to this antigen. PA, which binds cellular receptors and efficiently enters antigen-presenting cells by receptor-mediated endocytosis, was found to elicit robust anti-PA IgG and toxin neutralizing antibody responses. In contrast, a receptor binding-deficient mutant of PA, which does not bind receptors and only inefficiently enters antigen-presenting cells by macropinocytosis, elicited very poor antibody responses. A chimeric protein consisting of the receptor binding-deficient PA mutant tethered to the binding subunit of cholera toxin, which efficiently enters cells using the cholera toxin receptor rather than the PA receptor, elicited an anti-PA IgG antibody response similar to that elicited by wild-type PA; however, the chimeric protein elicited a poor toxin neutralizing antibody response. Taken together, our results demonstrate that the antigen capture pathway can dictate the magnitudes of the total IgG and toxin neutralizing antibody responses to PA as well as the ratio of the two responses.

  2. Anthrax, People and Dead Hippos

    Centers for Disease Control (CDC) Podcasts

    2017-11-07

    Epidemiologist, Dr. Melissa Marx, discuses anthrax deaths in people who ate dead hippos.  Created: 11/7/2017 by National Center for Emerging and Zoonotic Infectious Diseases (NCEZID).   Date Released: 11/7/2017.

  3. Progress and novel strategies in vaccine development and treatment of anthrax.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chitlaru, Theodor; Altboum, Zeev; Reuveny, Shaul; Shafferman, Avigdor

    2011-01-01

    The lethal anthrax disease is caused by spores of the gram-positive Bacillus anthracis, a member of the cereus group of bacilli. Although the disease is very rare in the Western world, development of anthrax countermeasures gains increasing attention due to the potential use of B. anthracis spores as a bio-terror weapon. Protective antigen (PA), the non-toxic subunit of the bacterial secreted exotoxin, fulfills the role of recognizing a specific receptor and mediating the entry of the toxin into the host target cells. PA elicits a protective immune response and represents the basis for all current anthrax vaccines. Anti-PA neutralizing antibodies are useful correlates for protection and for vaccine efficacy evaluation. Post exposure anti-toxemic and anti-bacteremic prophylactic treatment of anthrax requires prolonged antibiotic administration. Shorter efficient postexposure treatments may require active or passive immunization, in addition to antibiotics. Although anthrax is acknowledged as a toxinogenic disease, additional factors, other than the bacterial toxin, may be involved in the virulence of B. anthracis and may be needed for the long-lasting protection conferred by PA immunization. The search for such novel factors is the focus of several high throughput genomic and proteomic studies that are already leading to identification of novel targets for therapeutics, for vaccine candidates, as well as biomarkers for detection and diagnosis. © 2010 John Wiley & Sons A/S.

  4. Tobacco toxins deposited on surfaces (third hand smoke) impair wound healing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dhall, Sandeep; Alamat, Raquelle; Castro, Anthony; Sarker, Altaf H; Mao, Jian-Hua; Chan, Alex; Hang, Bo; Martins-Green, Manuela

    2016-07-01

    Third hand smoke (THS) is the accumulation of second hand smoke (SHS) toxins on surfaces in homes, cars, clothing and hair of smokers. It is known that 88M US nonsmokers ≥3 years old living in homes of smokers are exposed to THS toxicants and show blood cotinine levels of ≥0.05 ng/ml, indicating that the toxins are circulating in their circulatory systems. The goal of the present study is to investigate the mechanisms by which THS causes impaired wound healing. We show that mice living under conditions that mimic THS exposure in humans display delayed wound closure, impaired collagen deposition, altered inflammatory response, decreased angiogenesis, microvessels with fibrin cuffs and a highly proteolytic wound environment. Moreover, THS-exposed mouse wounds have high levels of oxidative stress and significantly lower levels of antioxidant activity leading to molecular damage, including protein nitration, lipid peroxidation and DNA damage that contribute to tissue dysfunction. Furthermore, we show that elastase is elevated, suggesting that elastin is degraded and the plasticity of the wound tissue is decreased. Taken together, our results lead us to conclude that THS toxicants delay and impair wound healing by disrupting the sequential processes that lead to normal healing. In addition, the lack of elastin results in loss of wound plasticity, which may be responsible for reopening of wounds. © 2016 The Author(s). published by Portland Press Limited on behalf of the Biochemical Society.

  5. Radiologic findings of the anthrax: focus on alimentary anthrax

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kim, Sung Woo; Kim, Won Ho; Yang, Geun Seok; Kim, Tae Hun; Kang, Duk Sik

    1995-01-01

    To evaluate the radiologic findings of alimentary anthrax. 19 patients with alimentary anthrax, which was caused by ingestion of contaminated beef, were included in this study. The diagnosis was made by demonstration of Bacillus anthracis in smear and culture of the contaminated meat. We evaluated the clinical manifestations and the findings of thoracic, abdominal radiographs, cervical, abdominal ultrasonograms and abdominal CT scans. Out of the 19 patients with the alimentary infection, 9 had oropharyngeal form, 18 had abdominal form and 8 had combination of oropharyngeal and abdominal form. The patients had general symptoms and signs such as fever, chill, myalgia. Clinical symptoms and signs were sore throat, throat injection, throat ulcer and patch in oropharyngeal form, and nausea, vomiting abdominal pain, diarrhea, and gross GI bleeding in abdominal form. Radiologic findings included enlarged cervical lymph nodes (36%) in oropharyngeal form, and paralytic ileus (26%), ascites (26%), hepatomegaly (21%), enlarged mesenteric lymph nodes (26%), small bowel wall thickening (5%) in abdominal form. In two patients, late complications occurred as intestinal obstruction due to ileal stricture with perforation, and inflammatory changes of pelvic cavity due to ileovesical fistula. Radiologic findings of alimentary anthrax are difficult in differentiation from those of other inflammatory bowel disease, but those radiologic findings with clinical manifestations may be helpful in diagnosis and evaluation of disease process in patients with alimentary anthrax

  6. Multiplexed imaging surface plasmon resonance (iSPR) biosensor assay for the detection of Fusarium toxins in wheat

    Science.gov (United States)

    Certain Fusarium species (F. graminearum and F. verticilloides in particular) infest grains and can produce a wide range of fungal (myco)-toxins, causing huge economic losses worldwide. A reproducible and sensitive imaging surface plasmon resonance (iSPR) assay was developed and validated for three ...

  7. Orbito-Maxillofacial Cutaneous Anthrax

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    and development of a black eschar were reviewed. Occupational history, falls and/or contact with animal meat was ... and oral ciprofloxacin (500mg BD for 21 days). The culture results isolated Bacillus anthracis highly ... The clinical evolution of cutaneous anthrax is typical with the initial development of minute red macules.

  8. Indirect Detection Of Bacillus Anthracis (Anthrax) Using Amplified Gamma Phage-Based Assays

    Science.gov (United States)

    2007-11-01

    enter 26 Figure 3.0 Model of anthrax toxin entry into eukaryotic cells 27 the lungs and into the mucus membrane...extract from porcine and mixture meat and milk peptones, 2.0 g D(+) glucose, 5.0 g NaCl and 2.5 g disodium phosphate) and TSB (g/L: 17.0 pancreatic...are present in blood serum, lymph fluid, gastric secretions, milk , and saliva. Serum antibody concentrations are commonly determined using the

  9. The anthrax letters: a medical detective story

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Cole, Leonard A

    2003-01-01

    .... Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data Cole, Leonard A., 1933The anthrax letters : a medical detective story / Leonard A. Cole. p. cm. Includes bibliographical references and index. ISBN 0-309-08881-X - ISBN 0-309-52584-5 (PDF) 1. Bioterrorism- United States. 2. Anthrax- United States. 3. Postal service- United States. 4. Victims of...

  10. Treatment of Anthrax Disease Frequently Asked Questions

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Judd, Kathleen S.; Young, Joan E.; Lesperance, Ann M.; Malone, John D.

    2010-05-14

    This document provides a summary of Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) on the treatment of anthrax disease caused by a wide-area release of Bacillus anthracis spores as an act bioterrorism. These FAQs are intended to provide the public health and medical community, as well as others, with guidance and communications to support the response and long-term recovery from an anthrax event.

  11. Stool C difficile toxin

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... toxin; Colitis - toxin; Pseudomembranous - toxin; Necrotizing colitis - toxin; C difficile - toxin ... be analyzed. There are several ways to detect C difficile toxin in the stool sample. Enzyme immunoassay ( ...

  12. Anthrax Meningitis - Report Of An Autopsied Case

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mahadevan A

    1999-01-01

    Full Text Available Anthrax is a rare cause of hemorrhagic meningitis in man. This report illustrates the characteristic hemorrhagic manifestations in the brain of a patient dying of anthrax meningitis secondary to overwhelming bacteremia. Gross examination of the brain revealed a thick dense subarachnoid hemorrhage with numerous petechial hemorrhages in the cortex. Histologically, meningoencephalitis with vascular necrosis, edema, perivascular cortical hemorrhages and clumps of Gram positive bacilli in the vascular lumen and invading vessel wall were the salient features. The anthrax bacillus was isolated from CSF and brain tissue and further its pathogenecity was confirmed by animal inoculation.

  13. Monoclonal antibodies and toxins--a perspective on function and isotype.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chow, Siu-Kei; Casadevall, Arturo

    2012-06-01

    Antibody therapy remains the only effective treatment for toxin-mediated diseases. The development of hybridoma technology has allowed the isolation of monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) with high specificity and defined properties, and numerous mAbs have been purified and characterized for their protective efficacy against different toxins. This review summarizes the mAb studies for 6 toxins--Shiga toxin, pertussis toxin, anthrax toxin, ricin toxin, botulinum toxin, and Staphylococcal enterotoxin B (SEB)--and analyzes the prevalence of mAb functions and their isotypes. Here we show that most toxin-binding mAbs resulted from immunization are non-protective and that mAbs with potential therapeutic use are preferably characterized. Various common practices and caveats of protection studies are discussed, with the goal of providing insights for the design of future research on antibody-toxin interactions.

  14. Role of visible light-activated photocatalyst on the reduction of anthrax spore-induced mortality in mice.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jyh-Hwa Kau

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Photocatalysis of titanium dioxide (TiO(2 substrates is primarily induced by ultraviolet light irradiation. Anion-doped TiO(2 substrates were shown to exhibit photocatalytic activities under visible-light illumination, relative environmentally-friendly materials. Their anti-spore activity against Bacillus anthracis, however, remains to be investigated. We evaluated these visible-light activated photocatalysts on the reduction of anthrax spore-induced pathogenesis. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Standard plating method was used to determine the inactivation of anthrax spore by visible light-induced photocatalysis. Mouse models were further employed to investigate the suppressive effects of the photocatalysis on anthrax toxin- and spore-mediated mortality. We found that anti-spore activities of visible light illuminated nitrogen- or carbon-doped titania thin films significantly reduced viability of anthrax spores. Even though the spore-killing efficiency is only approximately 25%, our data indicate that spores from photocatalyzed groups but not untreated groups have a less survival rate after macrophage clearance. In addition, the photocatalysis could directly inactivate lethal toxin, the major virulence factor of B. anthracis. In agreement with these results, we found that the photocatalyzed spores have tenfold less potency to induce mortality in mice. These data suggest that the photocatalysis might injury the spores through inactivating spore components. CONCLUSION/SIGNIFICANCE: Photocatalysis induced injuries of the spores might be more important than direct killing of spores to reduce pathogenicity in the host.

  15. Monte Carlo N-particle simulation of neutron-based sterilisation of anthrax contamination.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, B; Xu, J; Liu, T; Ouyang, X

    2012-10-01

    To simulate the neutron-based sterilisation of anthrax contamination by Monte Carlo N-particle (MCNP) 4C code. Neutrons are elementary particles that have no charge. They are 20 times more effective than electrons or γ-rays in killing anthrax spores on surfaces and inside closed containers. Neutrons emitted from a (252)Cf neutron source are in the 100 keV to 2 MeV energy range. A 2.5 MeV D-D neutron generator can create neutrons at up to 10(13) n s(-1) with current technology. All these enable an effective and low-cost method of killing anthrax spores. There is no effect on neutron energy deposition on the anthrax sample when using a reflector that is thicker than its saturation thickness. Among all three reflecting materials tested in the MCNP simulation, paraffin is the best because it has the thinnest saturation thickness and is easy to machine. The MCNP radiation dose and fluence simulation calculation also showed that the MCNP-simulated neutron fluence that is needed to kill the anthrax spores agrees with previous analytical estimations very well. The MCNP simulation indicates that a 10 min neutron irradiation from a 0.5 g (252)Cf neutron source or a 1 min neutron irradiation from a 2.5 MeV D-D neutron generator may kill all anthrax spores in a sample. This is a promising result because a 2.5 MeV D-D neutron generator output >10(13) n s(-1) should be attainable in the near future. This indicates that we could use a D-D neutron generator to sterilise anthrax contamination within several seconds.

  16. The Medicinal Chemistry of Botulinum, Ricin and Anthrax Toxins

    Science.gov (United States)

    2005-01-01

    workers 68 reported that the natural peptide determined that upon complexation with BABIM, the active buforin I, isolated From the stomach of the...active site by the BABIM and is then concentrations. Buforin I consists of 39 amino acid residues, transported to another region of the protein. The IC50...cleavage site [79]. Similar analysis of buforin I S, subsite of BoNT/B that recognizes the Glu [76] residue suggest that it exists as a helix-turn

  17. Detecting Anthrax, Botulinum Toxin, and Ricin – Immunoassay Test Strips

    Science.gov (United States)

    This assay is listed as Tier I for presumptive analysis of BoNTs in drinking water samples and Tier II for presumptive analysis of BoNTs in other environmental sample types. The lateral flow immunochromatographic assay uses two antibodies in combination to

  18. Detailed Safety Review of Anthrax Vaccine Adsorbed

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    2001-01-01

    To date, 18 human studies have assessed the safety of anthrax vaccination. These studies, some stretching back almost 50 years, reported adverse events after vaccination in varying degrees of detail...

  19. Vaccines and bioterrorism: smallpox and anthrax.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kimmel, Sanford R; Mahoney, Martin C; Zimmerman, Richard K

    2003-01-01

    Because of the success of vaccination and the ring strategy in eradicating smallpox from the world, smallpox vaccine has not been recommended for the United States civilian populations for decades. Given the low but possible threat of bioterrorism, smallpox vaccination is now recommended for those teams investigating potential smallpox cases and for selected personnel of acute-care hospitals who would be needed to care for victims in the event of a terrorist attack. Treatment and post-exposure prophylaxis for anthrax are ciprofloxacin or doxycycline. Anthrax vaccine alone is not effective for post-exposure prevention of anthrax; vaccination is accompanied by 60 days of antibiotic therapy. In addition to military use, anthrax vaccine is recommended for pre-exposure use in those persons whose work involves repeated exposure to Bacillus anthracis spores.

  20. Radiolabelling of cholera toxin

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Santos, R.G.; Neves, Nicoli M.J. [Centro de Desenvolvimento da Tecnologia Nuclear (CDTN), Belo Horizonte, MG (Brazil); Abdalla, L.F.; Brandao, R.L.; Etchehebehere, L. [Ouro Preto Univ., MG (Brazil). Escola de Farmacia. Lab. de Fisiologia e Bioquimica de Microorganismos; Lima, M.E. de [Minas Gerais Univ., Belo Horizonte, MG (Brazil). Inst. de Ciencias Biologicas. Dept. de Bioquimica e Imunologia; Nicoli, J.R. [Minas Gerais Univ., Belo Horizonte, MG (Brazil). Inst. de Ciencias Biologicas. Dept. de Microbiologia

    1999-11-01

    Binding of cholera toxin to ganglioside receptors of enterocyte microvilli catalyzes the activation of adenylate cyclase causing a rise in cAMP which final result is a copious diarrhea. Saccharomyces boulardii, a nonpathogenic yeast has been used to prevent diarrhea. Although the antidiarrheic properties of S. boulardii are widely recognized, this yeast has been used on empirical basis, and the mechanism of this protective effect is unknown. The addition of cholera toxin to S. boulardii induces the raising of cAMP that triggers the activation of neutral trehalase. This suggests that toxin specifically binding to cells, is internalized and active the protein phosphorylation cascade. Our objective is labeling the cholera toxin to verify the presence of binding sites on yeast cell surfaces for the cholera toxin. Cholera toxin was radiolabelled with Na {sup 125} I by a chloramine-T method modified from Cuatrecasas and Griffiths et alii. The {sup 125} I-Cholera toxin showed a specific radioactivity at about 1000 cpm/fmol toxin. Biological activity of labeled cholera toxin measured by trehalase activation was similar to the native toxin. (author) 5 refs., 3 figs.; e-mail: nevesmj at urano.cdtn.br

  1. Radiolabelling of cholera toxin

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Santos, R.G.; Neves, Nicoli M.J.; Abdalla, L.F.; Brandao, R.L.; Etchehebehere, L.; Lima, M.E. de; Nicoli, J.R.

    1999-01-01

    Binding of cholera toxin to ganglioside receptors of enterocyte microvilli catalyzes the activation of adenylate cyclase causing a rise in cAMP which final result is a copious diarrhea. Saccharomyces boulardii, a nonpathogenic yeast has been used to prevent diarrhea. Although the antidiarrheic properties of S. boulardii are widely recognized, this yeast has been used on empirical basis, and the mechanism of this protective effect is unknown. The addition of cholera toxin to S. boulardii induces the raising of cAMP that triggers the activation of neutral trehalase. This suggests that toxin specifically binding to cells, is internalized and active the protein phosphorylation cascade. Our objective is labeling the cholera toxin to verify the presence of binding sites on yeast cell surfaces for the cholera toxin. Cholera toxin was radiolabelled with Na 125 I by a chloramine-T method modified from Cuatrecasas and Griffiths et alii. The 125 I-Cholera toxin showed a specific radioactivity at about 1000 cpm/fmol toxin. Biological activity of labeled cholera toxin measured by trehalase activation was similar to the native toxin. (author)

  2. Screening Mixtures of Small Molecules for Binding to Multiple Sites on the Surface Tetanus Toxin C Fragment by Bioaffinity NMR

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Cosman, M; Zeller, L; Lightstone, F C; Krishnan, V V; Balhorn, R

    2002-01-01

    The clostridial neurotoxins include the closely related tetanus (TeNT) and botulinum (BoNT) toxins. Botulinum toxin is used to treat severe muscle disorders and as a cosmetic wrinkle reducer. Large quantities of botulinum toxin have also been produced by terrorists for use as a biological weapon. Because there are no known antidotes for these toxins, they thus pose a potential threat to human health whether by an accidental overdose or by a hostile deployment. Thus, the discovery of high specificity and affinity compounds that can inhibit their binding to neural cells can be used as antidotes or in the design of chemical detectors. Using the crystal structure of the C fragment of the tetanus toxin (TetC), which is the cell recognition and cell surface binding domain, and the computational program DOCK, sets of small molecules have been predicted to bind to two different sites located on the surface of this protein. While Site-1 is common to the TeNT and BoNTs, Site-2 is unique to TeNT. Pairs of these molecules from each site can then be linked together synthetically to thereby increase the specificity and affinity for this toxin. Electrospray ionization mass spectroscopy was used to experimentally screen each compound for binding. Mixtures containing binders were further screened for activity under biologically relevant conditions using nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) methods. The screening of mixtures of compounds offers increased efficiency and throughput as compared to testing single compounds and can also evaluate how possible structural changes induced by the binding of one ligand can influence the binding of the second ligand. In addition, competitive binding experiments with mixtures containing ligands predicted to bind the same site could identify the best binder for that site. NMR transfer nuclear Overhauser effect (trNOE) confirm that TetC binds doxorubicin but that this molecule is displaced by N-acetylneuraminic acid (sialic acid) in a mixture that

  3. Human and animal anthrax in Ethiopia: A retrospective record ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    26,737 animal anthrax cases (human to animal ratio 1:5) were reported from 2009 to 2013 ... respectively) This data analysis revealed that less number of human anthrax cases ..... quality to reach to strong conclusions and recommendations.

  4. Anthrax in Vintage Animal-hair Shaving Brushes

    Centers for Disease Control (CDC) Podcasts

    2017-08-08

    Dr. Kate Hendricks, a CDC anthrax expert, discusses anthrax in vintage shaving brushes.  Created: 8/8/2017 by National Center for Emerging and Zoonotic Infectious Diseases (NCEZID).   Date Released: 8/8/2017.

  5. Anthrax

    Science.gov (United States)

    2009-01-01

    chest radiograph will almost always exhibit a widened mediastinal contour that includes unilat- eral or bilateral hilar enlargement , as. well as...express B-Iactamase variants, peni - cillinases and cephalosporinases, which would undermine a lone-penicillin therapy (Lightfoot et ai., 1990

  6. Forecasting of interaction between bee propolis and protective antigenic domain in anthrax using the software and bioinformatics web servers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elmira Mohammadi

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Background: Protective antigen of anthrax toxin, after touching the cell receptors, plays an important role in the pathogenesis of toxin. The purpose of this study was to investigate the interaction of anthrax toxin protective antigen and four great combination propolis included caffeic acid, benzyl caffeate, cinnamic acid and kaempferol using the softwares and bioinformatics web servers. Methods: Three-dimensional structure of protective antigen (receptor obtains from Protein Data Bank (PDB. Four of the main components from propolis were selected          as ligand and their 3D-structures were obtained from ChemSpider and ZINC     compound database. The interaction of each ligand and receptor was assessed                   by SwissDock server (http://www.swissdock.ch/ and BSP-SLIM server (http://zhanglab.ccmb.med.umich.edu/BSP-SLIM. Docking results appears with Fullfitness numbers (in kcal/mol. Identification of amino acids involved in ligand and receptor interaction, was performed using the Chimera software; UCSF Chimera program (http://www.cgl.ucsf.edu/. Results: The results of interaction between propolis components and protective antigen by BSP-SLIM server showed that the most interaction was related with benzyl caffeate, caffeic acid, kaempferol and cinnamic acid, respectively. Results for the desired ligand Interaction with protective antigen genes using SwissDock server showed that the caffeic acid had ΔG equals -9.10 kcal/mol and FullFitness equal to -993.16 kcal/mol respectively. The analysis of interaction between ligands with amino-acids of protective antigen indicated that the interaction of Caffeic acid whit Glutamic acid 117 had energy -15.5429 kcal/mol. Conclusion: Finding strong and safe inhibitors for anthrax toxin is very useful method for inhibiting its toxicity to cell. In this study the binding ability of four flavonoids to protective antigen was studied. Glutamic acid 117 is very effective

  7. Toxin-independent virulence of Bacillus anthracis in rabbits.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Haim Levy

    Full Text Available The accepted paradigm states that anthrax is both an invasive and toxinogenic disease and that the toxins play a major role in pathogenicity. In the guinea pig (GP model we have previously shown that deletion of all three toxin components results in a relatively moderate attenuation in virulence, indicating that B. anthracis possesses an additional toxin-independent virulence mechanism. To characterize this toxin-independent mechanism in anthrax disease, we developed a new rabbit model by intravenous injection (IV of B. anthracis encapsulated vegetative cells, artificially creating bacteremia. Using this model we were able to demonstrate that also in rabbits, B. anthracis mutants lacking the toxins are capable of killing the host within 24 hours. This virulent trait depends on the activity of AtxA in the presence of pXO2, as, in the absence of the toxin genes, deletion of either component abolishes virulence. Furthermore, this IV virulence depends mainly on AtxA rather than the whole pXO1. A similar pattern was shown in the GP model using subcutaneous (SC administration of spores of the mutant strains, demonstrating the generality of the phenomenon. The virulent strains showed higher bacteremia levels and more efficient tissue dissemination; however our interpretation is that tissue dissemination per se is not the main determinant of virulence whose exact nature requires further elucidation.

  8. Rabies virus glycoprotein as a carrier for anthrax protective antigen

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Smith, Mary Ellen; Koser, Martin; Xiao Sa; Siler, Catherine; McGettigan, James P.; Calkins, Catherine; Pomerantz, Roger J.; Dietzschold, Bernhard; Schnell, Matthias J.

    2006-01-01

    Live viral vectors expressing foreign antigens have shown great promise as vaccines against viral diseases. However, safety concerns remain a major problem regarding the use of even highly attenuated viral vectors. Using the rabies virus (RV) envelope protein as a carrier molecule, we show here that inactivated RV particles can be utilized to present Bacillus anthracis protective antigen (PA) domain-4 in the viral membrane. In addition to the RV glycoprotein (G) transmembrane and cytoplasmic domains, a portion of the RV G ectodomain was required to express the chimeric RV G anthrax PA on the cell surface. The novel antigen was also efficiently incorporated into RV virions. Mice immunized with the inactivated recombinant RV virions exhibited seroconversion against both RV G and anthrax PA, and a second inoculation greatly increased these responses. These data demonstrate that a viral envelope protein can carry a bacterial protein and that a viral carrier can display whole polypeptides compared to the limited epitope presentation of previous viral systems

  9. Military Hospitalizations among Deployed US Service Members Following Anthrax Vaccination, 1998-2001

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Wells, Timothy S; Sato, Paul A; Smith, Tyler C; Wang, Linda Z; Reed, Robert J; Kappel Ryan, Margaret A

    2006-01-01

    .... To determine if anthrax vaccination was associated with an increased risk of hospitalization, a historical cohort study utilizing pre- and post-anthrax-vaccination hospitalizations was undertaken...

  10. Meningoencephalitis due to anthrax: CT and MR findings

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Yildirim, Hanefi; Koc, Mustafa; Murat, Ayse [Firat University, Department of Radiology, Elazig (Turkey); Kabakus, Nimet; Incekoey Girgin, Feyza [Firat University, Department of Paediatric Neurology, Elazig (Turkey)

    2006-11-15

    Anthrax is primarily a disease of herbivores, but it also causes cutaneous, respiratory and gastrointestinal infections in humans. Bacillus anthracis is an uncommon cause of meningitis and generally produces a haemorrhagic meningoencephalitis. We present the CT and MR findings of anthrax meningoencephalitis due to the cutaneous form of anthrax in a 12-year-old boy. They showed focal intracerebral haemorrhage with leptomeningeal enhancement. (orig.)

  11. Human anthrax as a re-emerging disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Doganay, Mehmet; Demiraslan, Hayati

    2015-01-01

    Anthrax is primarily a disease of herbivores and the etiological agent is B. anthracis which is a gram-positive, aerobic, spore-forming, and rod shaped bacterium. Bacillus anthracis spores are highly resistant to heat, pressure, ultraviolet and ionizing radiation, chemical agents and disinfectants. For these reasons, B. anthracis spores are an attractive choice as biological agents for the use of bioweapon and/or bioterrorism. Soil is the main reservoir for the infectious agent. The disease most commonly affects wild and domestic mammals. Human are secondarily infected by contact with infected animals and contaminated animal products or directly expose to B. anthracis spores. Anthrax occurs worldwide. This infection is still endemic or hyperendemic in both animals and humans in some part of areas of the world; particularly in Middle East, West Africa, Central Asia, some part of India, South America. However, some countries are claiming free of anthrax, and anthrax has become a re-emerging disease in western countries with the intentional outbreak. Currently, anthrax is classified according to its setting as (1) naturally occurring anthrax, (2) bioterrorism-related anthrax. Vast majority of human anthrax are occurring as naturally occurring anthrax in the world. It is also a threaten disease for western countries. The aim of this paper is to review the relevant patents, short historical perspective, microbiological and epidemiological features, clinical presentations and treatment.

  12. Polyamine toxins

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Strømgaard, Kristian; Jensen, Lars S; Vogensen, Stine B

    2005-01-01

    Polyamine toxins, isolated from spiders and wasps, have been used as pharmacological tools for the study of ionotropic receptors, but their use have so far been hampered by their lack of selectivity. In this mini-review, we describe how careful synthetic modification of native polyamine toxins ha...

  13. Pharmacophore selection and redesign of non-nucleotide inhibitors of anthrax edema factor.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schein, Catherine H; Chen, Deliang; Ma, Lili; Kanalas, John J; Gao, Jian; Jimenez, Maria Estrella; Sower, Laurie E; Walter, Mary A; Gilbertson, Scott R; Peterson, Johnny W

    2012-11-08

    Antibiotic treatment may fail to protect individuals, if not started early enough, after infection with Bacillus anthracis, due to the continuing activity of toxins that the bacterium produces. Stable and easily stored inhibitors of the edema factor toxin (EF), an adenylyl cyclase, could save lives in the event of an outbreak, due to natural causes or a bioweapon attack. The toxin's basic activity is to convert ATP to cAMP, and it is thus in principle a simple phosphatase, which means that many mammalian enzymes, including intracellular adenylcyclases, may have a similar activity. While nucleotide based inhibitors, similar to its natural substrate, ATP, were identified early, these compounds had low activity and specificity for EF. We used a combined structural and computational approach to choose small organic molecules in large, web-based compound libraries that would, based on docking scores, bind to residues within the substrate binding pocket of EF. A family of fluorenone-based inhibitors was identified that inhibited the release of cAMP from cells treated with EF. The lead inhibitor was also shown to inhibit the diarrhea caused by enterotoxigenic E. coli (ETEC) in a murine model, perhaps by serving as a quorum sensor. These inhibitors are now being tested for their ability to inhibit Anthrax infection in animal models and may have use against other pathogens that produce toxins similar to EF, such as Bordetella pertussis or Vibrio cholera.

  14. Two anthrax cases with soft tissue infection, severe oedema and sepsis in Danish heroin users

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Russell, Lene; Pedersen, Michael; Jensen, Andreas V

    2013-01-01

    Anthrax had become extremely rare in Europe, but in 2010 an outbreak of anthrax among heroin users in Scotland increased awareness of contaminated heroin as a source of anthrax. We present the first two Danish cases of injectional anthrax and discuss the clinical presentations, which included both...

  15. Botulinum toxin

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nigam P

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available Botulinum toxin, one of the most poisonous biological substances known, is a neurotoxin produced by the bacterium Clostridium botulinum. C. botulinum elaborates eight antigenically distinguishable exotoxins (A, B, C 1 , C 2 , D, E, F and G. All serotypes interfere with neural transmission by blocking the release of acetylcholine, the principal neurotransmitter at the neuromuscular junction, causing muscle paralysis. The weakness induced by injection with botulinum toxin A usually lasts about three months. Botulinum toxins now play a very significant role in the management of a wide variety of medical conditions, especially strabismus and focal dystonias, hemifacial spasm, and various spastic movement disorders, headaches, hypersalivation, hyperhidrosis, and some chronic conditions that respond only partially to medical treatment. The list of possible new indications is rapidly expanding. The cosmetological applications include correction of lines, creases and wrinkling all over the face, chin, neck, and chest to dermatological applications such as hyperhidrosis. Injections with botulinum toxin are generally well tolerated and side effects are few. A precise knowledge and understanding of the functional anatomy of the mimetic muscles is absolutely necessary to correctly use botulinum toxins in clinical practice.

  16. Pharmacophore Selection and Redesign of Non-nucleotide Inhibitors of Anthrax Edema Factor

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maria Estrella Jimenez

    2012-11-01

    Full Text Available Antibiotic treatment may fail to protect individuals, if not started early enough, after infection with Bacillus anthracis, due to the continuing activity of toxins that the bacterium produces. Stable and easily stored inhibitors of the edema factor toxin (EF, an adenylyl cyclase, could save lives in the event of an outbreak, due to natural causes or a bioweapon attack. The toxin’s basic activity is to convert ATP to cAMP, and it is thus in principle a simple phosphatase, which means that many mammalian enzymes, including intracellular adenylcyclases, may have a similar activity. While nucleotide based inhibitors, similar to its natural substrate, ATP, were identified early, these compounds had low activity and specificity for EF. We used a combined structural and computational approach to choose small organic molecules in large, web-based compound libraries that would, based on docking scores, bind to residues within the substrate binding pocket of EF. A family of fluorenone-based inhibitors was identified that inhibited the release of cAMP from cells treated with EF. The lead inhibitor was also shown to inhibit the diarrhea caused by enterotoxigenic E. coli (ETEC in a murine model, perhaps by serving as a quorum sensor. These inhibitors are now being tested for their ability to inhibit Anthrax infection in animal models and may have use against other pathogens that produce toxins similar to EF, such as Bordetella pertussis or Vibrio cholera.

  17. Phenotypic and genotypic characteristics of Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli isolated from surface waters and sediments in a Canadian urban-agricultural landscape

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stephanie eNadya

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available A hydrophobic grid membrane filtration – Shiga toxin immunoblot method was used to examine the prevalence of Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli (STEC in four watersheds located in the Lower Mainland of British Columbia, Canada, a region characterized by rapid urbanization and intensive agricultural activity. STEC were recovered from 21.6, 23.2, 19.5 and 9.2 % of surface water samples collected monthly from five sites in each watershed over a period of one year. Overall prevalence was subject to seasonal variation however, ranging between 13.3 % during fall months and 34.3 % during winter months. STEC were also recovered from 23.8 % of sediment samples collected in one randomly selected site. One hundred distinct STEC isolates distributed among 29 definitive and 4 ambiguous or indeterminate serotypes were recovered from water and sediments, including isolates from Canadian priority serogroups O157 (3, O26 (4, O103 (5 and O111 (7. Forty seven isolates were further characterized by analysis of whole genome sequences to detect Shiga toxin gene (stx 1 and stx 2, intimin gene (eaeA allelic variants and acquired virulence factors. These analyses collectively showed that surface waters from the region support highly diverse STEC populations that include strains with virulence factors commonly associated with human pathotypes. The present work served to characterize the microbiological hazard implied by STEC to support future assessments of risks to public health arising from non-agricultural and agricultural uses of surface water resources in the region.

  18. Lymphocyte receptors for pertussis toxin

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Clark, C.G.; Armstrong, G.D. (Univ. of Alberta, Edmonton (Canada))

    1990-12-01

    We have investigated human T-lymphocyte receptors for pertussis toxin by affinity isolation and photoaffinity labeling procedures. T lymphocytes were obtained from peripheral human blood, surface iodinated, and solubilized in Triton X-100. The iodinated mixture was then passed through pertussis toxin-agarose, and the fractions were analyzed by sodium dodecyl sulfate-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis. Autoradiography of the fixed, dried gels revealed several bands in the pertussis toxin-bound fraction that were not observed in fractions obtained from histone or fetuin-agarose. Further investigations employed a photoaffinity labeling reagent, sulfosuccinimidyl 2-(p-azido-salicylamido)-1,3'-dithiopropionate, to identify pertussis toxin receptors in freshly isolated peripheral blood monocytic cells, T lymphocytes, and Jurkat cells. In all three cell systems, the pertussis toxin affinity probe specifically labeled a single protein species with an apparent molecular weight of 70,000 that was not observed when the procedure was performed in the presence of excess unmodified pertussis toxin. A protein comparable in molecular weight to the one detected by the photoaffinity labeling technique was also observed among the species that bound to pertussis toxin-agarose. The results suggest that pertussis toxin may bind to a 70,000-Da receptor in human T lymphocytes.

  19. The use of anthrax and orthopox therapeutic antibodies from human origin in biodefense

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Stienstra, S.

    2009-01-01

    It is impossible to protect whole nations from the effects of bioterrorism by preventive vaccination; there are too many possible agents, costs would be exorbitantly high, and the health risks associated with complex mass vaccination programs would be unacceptable. Adequate protection, however, could be provided via a combination of rapid detection and diagnosis and the treatment of those exposed with drugs which would be beneficial in all stages of disease. Monoclonal antibodies, preferably from human origin to prevent severe complications, which neutralize or block the pathological effects of biological agents, are the optimal candidates to be deployed in case of biological warfare or a bioterrorist event. The human body is one of the better and most suitably equipped places for the generation of monoclonal antibodies which are to be used effectively in humans for treatment. Such antibodies will be of optimal physiological specificity, affinity, and pharmacological properties. In addition, the chances on severe adverse effects and cross-reactivity with human tissues will be slim. Therefore the human immune response is used by the Dutch company IQ Therapeutics, a spin-off of the Groningen University, as a basis for selecting the antibodies. People, immunised against or infected with the agent in question, donate blood cells voluntarily, which are used to generate fully human monoclonal antibodies. In this way effective therapeutics against the protective antigen (PA) and lethal factor (LF) toxin components of Bacillus anthracis are developed and currently antibodies against orthopox viruses are generated as well from donors, which have been immunized with vaccinia. Other projects are the development of therapeutic antibodies for MRSA (antibiotics resistant Staphylococcus aureus) and Enterococcus spp. Both human antibodies against the anthrax toxin components are efficacious in vitro and in pre- and post-exposure settings in mice and rabbits. The anti-LF antibody

  20. Screen-printed fluorescent sensors for rapid and sensitive anthrax biomarker detection

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lee, Inkyu; Oh, Wan-Kyu; Jang, Jyongsik

    2013-01-01

    Highlights: •We fabricated flexible anthrax sensors with a simple screen-printing method. •The sensors selectively detected B. anthracis biomarker. •The sensors provide the visible alarm against anthrax attack. -- Abstract: Since the 2001 anthrax attacks, efforts have focused on the development of an anthrax detector with rapid response and high selectivity and sensitivity. Here, we demonstrate a fluorescence sensor for detecting anthrax biomarker with high sensitivity and selectivity using a screen-printing method. A lanthanide–ethylenediamine tetraacetic acid complex was printed on a flexible polyethersulfone film. Screen-printing deposition of fluorescent detecting moieties produced fluorescent patterns that acted as a visual alarm against anthrax

  1. The anthrax vaccine: is it safe? does it work?

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Committee to Assess the Safety and Efficacy of the Anthrax Vaccine, Medical Follow-Up Agency

    2002-01-01

    ...), was licensed in 1970. It was initially used to protect people who might be exposed to anthrax where they worked, such as veterinarians and textile plant workers who process animal hair. When the U...

  2. Dendritic Cells Endocytose Bacillus Anthracis Spores: Implications for Anthrax Pathogenesis

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Brittingham, Katherine C; Ruthel, Gordon; Panchal, Rekha G; Fuller, Claudette L; Ribot, Wilson J

    2005-01-01

    Phagocytosis of inhaled Bacillus anthracis spores and subsequent trafficking to lymph nodes are decisive events in the progression of inhaled anthrax because they initiate germination and dissemination of spores...

  3. [Anthrax meningoencephalitis: a case report and review of Turkish literature].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Metan, Gökhan; Uysal, Burcu; Coşkun, Ramazan; Perçin, Duygu; Doğanay, Mehmet

    2009-10-01

    The incidence of anthrax is decreasing in Turkey, however, it is still endemic in some regions of the country. Although central nervous system involvement is rare in cases with anthrax, high mortality rates are significant. Here, we report a 46-years old woman who was anthrax meningoencephalitis. The patient was from Yozgat located in Central Anatolia, Turkey. Her history revealed that following peeling the skin of sheeps and consuming their meat a week ago, a lesion developed in her left forearm and she had been treated with penicilin G with the diagnosis of cutaneous anthrax in a local health center. The patient was admitted to the emergency room of our hospital due to increased headache and loss of conciousness and diagnosed as anthrax meningitis. Crytallized penicilin G (24 MU/day IV) and vancomycin (2 g/day IV) were initiated. The macroscopy of cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) sample was haemorrhagic, white blood cell count was 40/mm3 (80% of neutrophil) and Gram staining of CSF yielded abundant gram-positive bacilli. The diagnosis was confirmed by the isolation of Bacillus anthracis from CSF culture. Although the isolate was susceptible to penicillin and dexamethasone was added to the treatment, the patient died. Review of the Turkish literature revealed seven cases of anthrax with central nervous system involvement between 1980-2008. One of the patients was an 11-years old boy and the others were adults aged between 19 and 64 years. The source of the infection was skin in four patients and inhalation in one patient. The most common findings in all of the patients were inhabitance in rural area, haemorrhagic CSF and loss of all patients despite appropriate antibiotic therapy. In conclusion, anthrax meningitis and meningoencephalitis should be considered in the differential diagnosis of haemorrhagic meningitis in areas where anthrax is endemic and high rate of mortality despite appropriate therapy should always be kept in mind.

  4. 2014 Anthrax epidemic in Koubia prefecture, Guinea-Conakry.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sow, M S; Boushab, M B; Balde, H; Camara, A; Sako, F B; Traoré, F A; Diallo, M O S; Diallo, M D; Keita, M; Sylla, A O; Tounkara, T M; Cissé, M

    2016-11-01

    Anthrax disease is an anthropozoonosis caused by a Gram-positive bacterium, Bacillus anthracis. Our objective was to describe the epidemiological, clinical and therapeutic features of the 2014 epidemic in Koubia prefecture. This retrospective study examined all of the anthrax cases reported in Fafaya, Koubia Prefecture. In March and April 2014, there were 39 cases of human anthrax reported, for an incidence of 1.135%. The mean age was 20.9 (± 18.3) with a sex ratio of 2.54 (28/11) in favor of men. Seventy-six percent (23/39) were single. More than one half were students (53.8%). The main clinical signs were fever in 71, 8% (n = 28 /), papules 59% (n = 23), vesicles of 59% (n = 23) Digestive and cutaneous signs represented 35.9 % and 64.1% respectively; 35% had ingested contaminated meat and 17.95% were in direct contact with a sick animal. We didn't find any correlation between the mode of infection and onset of signs. The fatality rate was 28.21%. The 2014 epidemic of anthrax disease in the Koubia prefecture was marked by a high incidence and lethality. Clinical manifestations were cutaneaous and digestive. These results may serve further interventions to fight against anthrax disease. They should mainly focus on an awareness of peasants, surveillance and vaccination of cattle. Other studies seem to be necessary.

  5. Sverdlovsk Anthrax Outbreak: An Educational Case Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Steele, S. J.; van der Vink, G.

    2002-05-01

    In April and May of 1979 an Anthrax epidemic broke out in the city of Sverdlovsk (now Ekaterinburg) in the former Soviet Union. Sixty-four people were reported to have died from the outbreak, although there is still debate concerning the actual number of victims. While Soviet officials initially attributed this outbreak to contaminated meat, the US Government maintained that the outbreak was due to a leakage from a biological weapons facility. We have created and implemented an undergraduate educational exercise based on the forensic analysis of this event. Students were provided case data of the victims, area satellite images and meteorological data. One goal of the exercise was for students to reconstruct the most probable scenario of events through valid inference based on the limited information and uncertainties associated with the data set. Another goal was to make students sensitive to issues of biological weapons and bioterrorism. The exercise was highly rated by students even before the events of September 11. There is a clear need to educate students, particularly in the sciences, to be aware of the signatures of terrorist activities. Evidence of terrorist activities is more likely to appear from unintended discoveries than from active intelligence gathering. We believe our national security can be enhanced by sensitizing those that monitor the natural environment to the signatures of terrorist activities through the types of educational exercises that we have developed.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jayedul Hassan

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available Anthrax, caused by Bacillus anthracis is an acute, febrile disease of warm blooded animals including humans. Social norms and poverty in addition to climatic factors such as soil conditions, seasons of year, ambient temperature and rainfall influence the persistence of the B. anthracis and anthrax outbreaks. The present study was designed to reveal the factors influencing the repeated outbreak of anthrax in Bangladesh. Considering the previous outbreaks of anthrax, Sirajganj, Bogra, Kushtia, Tangail and Mymensingh districts of Bangladesh were selected for this study. To elucidate the factors, qualitative data relating to the animal management, knowledge and behavior of the people; and quantitative data relating to soil conditions, ambient temperature and rainfall were acquired, and analyzed critically. Based on the outbreak histories, a year was divided into two seasons, anthrax prone season (May-November and anthrax dry season (December-April. Anthrax spores could be isolated from 11.67% (n=14/120 of the soil samples collected from the study areas. The present study revealed that poor knowledge, lack of awareness, improper carcass disposal, inadequate vaccination, high Ca content and moisture in the soil along with high ambient temperature and rainfall during the anthrax prone season were the possible influencing factors of repeated outbreaks of anthrax in the study areas. Intensive propaganda to create public awareness of anthrax together with proper vaccination may reduce anthrax outbreaks in Bangladesh.

  7. Obiltoxaximab Prevents Disseminated Bacillus anthracis Infection and Improves Survival during Pre- and Postexposure Prophylaxis in Animal Models of Inhalational Anthrax

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yamamoto, Brent J.; Shadiack, Annette M.; Carpenter, Sarah; Sanford, Daniel; Henning, Lisa N.; Gonzales, Nestor; O'Connor, Edward; Casey, Leslie S.

    2016-01-01

    The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommend adjunctive antitoxins when systemic anthrax is suspected. Obiltoxaximab, a monoclonal antibody against protective antigen (PA), is approved for treatment of inhalational anthrax in combination with antibiotics and for prophylaxis when alternative therapies are not available. The impact of toxin neutralization with obiltoxaximab during pre- and postexposure prophylaxis was explored, and efficacy results that supported the prophylaxis indication are presented here. New Zealand White rabbits and cynomolgus macaques received obiltoxaximab as a single intramuscular or intravenous dose of 2 to 16 mg/kg of body weight at various times relative to Bacillus anthracis aerosol spore challenge. The primary endpoint was survival, and effect of treatment timing was explored. In rabbits, obiltoxaximab administration 9 h postchallenge singly or combined with a 5-day levofloxacin regimen protected 89% to 100% of animals compared to 33% with levofloxacin monotherapy. In cynomolgus macaques, a single intramuscular dose of 16 mg/kg obiltoxaximab led to 100% survival when given 1 to 3 days preexposure and 83% to 100% survival when given 18 to 24 h postexposure and prior to systemic bacteremia onset. Obiltoxaximab administration after bacteremia onset resulted in lower (25% to 50%) survival rates reflective of treatment setting. Prophylactic administration of obiltoxaximab before spore challenge or to spore-challenged animals before systemic bacterial dissemination is efficacious in promoting survival, ameliorating toxemia, and inhibiting bacterial spread to the periphery. PMID:27431219

  8. Micromotors to capture and destroy anthrax simulant spores.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Orozco, Jahir; Pan, Guoqing; Sattayasamitsathit, Sirilak; Galarnyk, Michael; Wang, Joseph

    2015-03-07

    Towards addressing the need for detecting and eliminating biothreats, we describe a micromotor-based approach for screening, capturing, isolating and destroying anthrax simulant spores in a simple and rapid manner with minimal sample processing. The B. globilli antibody-functionalized micromotors can recognize, capture and transport B. globigii spores in environmental matrices, while showing non-interactions with excess of non-target bacteria. Efficient destruction of the anthrax simulant spores is demonstrated via the micromotor-induced mixing of a mild oxidizing solution. The new micromotor-based approach paves a way to dynamic multifunctional systems that rapidly recognize, isolate, capture and destroy biological threats.

  9. Growth medium for the rapid isolation and identification of anthrax

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kiel, Johnathan L.; Parker, Jill E.; Grubbs, Teri R.; Alls, John L.

    2000-07-01

    Anthrax has been recognized as a highly likely biological warfare or terrorist agent. The purpose of this work was to design a culture technique to rapidly isolate and identify `live' anthrax. In liquid or solid media form, 3AT medium (3-amino-L-tyrosine, the main ingredient) accelerated germination and growth of anthrax spores in 5 to 6 hours to a point expected at 18 to 24 hours with ordinary medium. During accelerated growth, standard definitive diagnostic tests such as sensitivity to lysis by penicillin or bacteriophage can be run. During this time, the bacteria synthesized a fluorescent and thermochemiluminescent polymer. Bacteria captured by specific antibody are, therefore, already labeled. Because living bacteria are required to generate the polymer, the test converts immunoassays for anthrax into viability assays. Furthermore, the polymer formation leads to the death of the vegetative form and non-viability of the spores produced in the medium. By altering the formulation of the medium, other microbes and even animal and human cells can be grown in it and labeled (including viruses grown in the animal or human cells).

  10. Non-Replicating Adenovirus-Vectored Anthrax Vaccine

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Van Kampen, K. R.; Zhang, J.; Jex, E.; Tang, D. C.

    2007-01-01

    As bioterrorism is emerging as a national threat, it is urgent to develop a new generation of anthrax vaccines that can be rapidly produced and mass administered in an emergency setting. We have demonstrated that protective immunity against anthrax spores could be elicited in mice by intranasal administration of a non-replicating human adenovirus serotype 5 (Ad5)-derived vector encoding Bacillus anthracis protective antigen (PA) in a single-dose regimen. The potency of an Ad5 vector encoding PA was remarkably enhanced by codon optimization of the PA gene to match the tRNA pool found in human cells. This nasal vaccine can be mass-administered by non-medical personnel during a bioterrorist attack. In addition, replication-competent adenovirus (RCA)-free Ad5-vectored anthrax vaccines can be mass produced in PER.C6 cells in serum-free wave bioreactors and purified by column chromatography to meet a surge in demand. The non-replicating nature of this new generation of anthrax vaccine ensures an excellent safety profile for vaccines and the environment.(author)

  11. Transient Co-Expression of Post-Transcriptional Gene Silencing Suppressors for Increased in Planta Expression of a Recombinant Anthrax Receptor Fusion Protein

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kittipong Rattanaporn

    2011-08-01

    Full Text Available Potential epidemics of infectious diseases and the constant threat of bioterrorism demand rapid, scalable, and cost-efficient manufacturing of therapeutic proteins. Molecular farming of tobacco plants provides an alternative for the recombinant production of therapeutics. We have developed a transient production platform that uses Agrobacterium infiltration of Nicotiana benthamiana plants to express a novel anthrax receptor decoy protein (immunoadhesin, CMG2-Fc. This chimeric fusion protein, designed to protect against the deadly anthrax toxins, is composed of the von Willebrand factor A (VWA domain of human capillary morphogenesis 2 (CMG2, an effective anthrax toxin receptor, and the Fc region of human immunoglobulin G (IgG. We evaluated, in N. benthamiana intact plants and detached leaves, the expression of CMG2-Fc under the control of the constitutive CaMV 35S promoter, and the co-expression of CMG2-Fc with nine different viral suppressors of post-transcriptional gene silencing (PTGS: p1, p10, p19, p21, p24, p25, p38, 2b, and HCPro. Overall, transient CMG2-Fc expression was higher on intact plants than detached leaves. Maximum expression was observed with p1 co-expression at 3.5 days post-infiltration (DPI, with a level of 0.56 g CMG2-Fc per kg of leaf fresh weight and 1.5% of the total soluble protein, a ten-fold increase in expression when compared to absence of suppression. Co-expression with the p25 PTGS suppressor also significantly increased the CMG2-Fc expression level after just 3.5 DPI.

  12. Transient co-expression of post-transcriptional gene silencing suppressors for increased in planta expression of a recombinant anthrax receptor fusion protein.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arzola, Lucas; Chen, Junxing; Rattanaporn, Kittipong; Maclean, James M; McDonald, Karen A

    2011-01-01

    Potential epidemics of infectious diseases and the constant threat of bioterrorism demand rapid, scalable, and cost-efficient manufacturing of therapeutic proteins. Molecular farming of tobacco plants provides an alternative for the recombinant production of therapeutics. We have developed a transient production platform that uses Agrobacterium infiltration of Nicotiana benthamiana plants to express a novel anthrax receptor decoy protein (immunoadhesin), CMG2-Fc. This chimeric fusion protein, designed to protect against the deadly anthrax toxins, is composed of the von Willebrand factor A (VWA) domain of human capillary morphogenesis 2 (CMG2), an effective anthrax toxin receptor, and the Fc region of human immunoglobulin G (IgG). We evaluated, in N. benthamiana intact plants and detached leaves, the expression of CMG2-Fc under the control of the constitutive CaMV 35S promoter, and the co-expression of CMG2-Fc with nine different viral suppressors of post-transcriptional gene silencing (PTGS): p1, p10, p19, p21, p24, p25, p38, 2b, and HCPro. Overall, transient CMG2-Fc expression was higher on intact plants than detached leaves. Maximum expression was observed with p1 co-expression at 3.5 days post-infiltration (DPI), with a level of 0.56 g CMG2-Fc per kg of leaf fresh weight and 1.5% of the total soluble protein, a ten-fold increase in expression when compared to absence of suppression. Co-expression with the p25 PTGS suppressor also significantly increased the CMG2-Fc expression level after just 3.5 DPI.

  13. A Supramolecular Sensing Platform for Phosphate Anions and an Anthrax Biomarker in a Microfluidic Device

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jurriaan Huskens

    2011-10-01

    Full Text Available A supramolecular platform based on self-assembled monolayers (SAMs has been implemented in a microfluidic device. The system has been applied for the sensing of two different analyte types: biologically relevant phosphate anions and aromatic carboxylic acids, which are important for anthrax detection. A Eu(III-EDTA complex was bound to β-cyclodextrin monolayers via orthogonal supramolecular host-guest interactions. The self-assembly of the Eu(III-EDTA conjugate and naphthalene β-diketone as an antenna resulted in the formation of a highly luminescent lanthanide complex on the microchannel surface. Detection of different phosphate anions and aromatic carboxylic acids was demonstrated by monitoring the decrease in red emission following displacement of the antenna by the analyte. Among these analytes, adenosine triphosphate (ATP and pyrophosphate, as well as dipicolinic acid (DPA which is a biomarker for anthrax, showed a strong response. Parallel fabrication of five sensing SAMs in a single multichannel chip was performed, as a first demonstration of phosphate and carboxylic acid screening in a multiplexed format that allows a general detection platform for both analyte systems in a single test run with µM and nM detection sensitivity for ATP and DPA, respectively.

  14. First Autochthonous Coinfected Anthrax in an Immunocompetent Patient

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Parvaneh Afshar

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Cutaneous anthrax has a mortality rate of 20% if no antibacterial treatment is applied. The clinical manifestations of cutaneous anthrax are obviously striking, but coinfection may produce atypical lesions and mask the clinical manifestations and proper laboratory diagnosis. Anthrax is known to be more common in the Middle East and Iran is one of the countries in which the zoonotic form of anthrax may still be encountered. We report a case of a 19-years-old male who used to apply Venetian ceruse on his skin. Venetian ceruse (also known as Spirits of Saturn is an old cosmetic product used for skin whitening traditionally made from sheep’s spinal cord. The patient referred to the Referral Laboratory, Mazandaran University of Medical Sciences, Sari, Iran, with atypical dermatosis, pronounced pain, and oedema of the affected tissue. It was confirmed by both conventional and molecular analysis that culture was a mixture of Bacillus anthracis and Trichophyton interdigitale. The patient was initially treated with ceftriaxone (1000 mg/day for two weeks, gentamicin (1.5–2 mg/kg/day, terbinafine (200 mg/week for one month, and 1% clotrimazole cream (5 weeks two times per day which resulted in gradual improvement. No relapse could be detected after one-year follow-up. Anthrax infection might present a broader spectrum of symptoms than expected by clinicians. These unfamiliar characteristics may lead to delayed diagnosis, inadequate treatment, and higher mortality rate. Clinicians need to be aware of this issue in order to have successful management over this infection.

  15. Cationic PAMAM dendrimers as pore-blocking binary toxin inhibitors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Förstner, Philip; Bayer, Fabienne; Kalu, Nnanya; Felsen, Susanne; Förtsch, Christina; Aloufi, Abrar; Ng, David Y W; Weil, Tanja; Nestorovich, Ekaterina M; Barth, Holger

    2014-07-14

    Dendrimers are unique highly branched macromolecules with numerous groundbreaking biomedical applications under development. Here we identified poly(amido amine) (PAMAM) dendrimers as novel blockers for the pore-forming B components of the binary anthrax toxin (PA63) and Clostridium botulinum C2 toxin (C2IIa). These pores are essential for delivery of the enzymatic A components of the internalized toxins from endosomes into the cytosol of target cells. We demonstrate that at low μM concentrations cationic PAMAM dendrimers block PA63 and C2IIa to inhibit channel-mediated transport of the A components, thereby protecting HeLa and Vero cells from intoxication. By channel reconstitution and high-resolution current recording, we show that the PAMAM dendrimers obstruct transmembrane PA63 and C2IIa pores in planar lipid bilayers at nM concentrations. These findings suggest a new potential role for the PAMAM dendrimers as effective polyvalent channel-blocking inhibitors, which can protect human target cells from intoxication with binary toxins from pathogenic bacteria.

  16. Botulinum toxin injection - larynx

    Science.gov (United States)

    Injection laryngoplasty; Botox - larynx: spasmodic dysphonia-BTX; Essential voice tremor (EVT)-btx; Glottic insufficiency; Percutaneous electromyography - guided botulinum toxin treatment; Percutaneous indirect laryngoscopy - guided botulinum toxin treatment; ...

  17. Defense against Toxin Weapons

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Franz, David

    1998-01-01

    .... We typically fear what we do not understand. Although un- derstanding toxin poisoning is less useful in a toxin attack than knowledge of cold injury on an Arctic battlefield, information on any threat reduces its potential to harm...

  18. A Health Threat to Bystanders Living in the Homes of Smokers: How Smoke Toxins Deposited on Surfaces Can Cause Insulin Resistance.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Neema Adhami

    Full Text Available Thirdhand smoke (THS is the accumulation of secondhand smoke on environmental surfaces. THS is found on the clothing and hair of smokers as well as on surfaces in homes and cars of smokers. Exposure occurs by ingestion, inhalation and dermal absorption. Children living in homes of smokers are at highest risk because they crawl on the floor, touch parents' clothing/hair and household objects. Using mice exposed to THS under conditions that mimic exposure of humans, we show that THS increases cellular oxidative stress by increasing superoxide dismutase (SOD activity and hydrogen peroxide (H2O2 levels while reducing the activity of antioxidant enzymes catalase and glutathione peroxidase (GPx that break down H2O2 into H2O and O2. This results in lipid peroxidation, protein nitrosylation and DNA damage. Consequences of these cell and molecular changes are hyperglycemia and insulinemia. Indeed, we found reduced levels of insulin receptor, PI3K, AKT, all important molecules in insulin signaling and glucose uptake by cells. To determine whether these effects on THS-induced insulin resistance are due to increase in oxidative stress, we treated mice exposed to THS with the antioxidants N-acetyl cysteine (NAC and alpha-tocopherol (alpha-toc and showed that the oxidative stress, the molecular damage, and the insulin resistance, were significantly reversed. Conversely, feeding the mice with chow that mimics "western diet", which is known to increase oxidative stress, while exposing the mice to THS, further increased the oxidative stress and aggravated hyperglycemia and insulinemia. In conclusion, THS exposure results in insulin resistance in the form of non-obese type II diabetes (NODII through oxidative stress. If confirmed in humans, these studies could have a major impact on how people view exposure to environmental tobacco toxins, in particular to children, elderly and workers in environments where tobacco smoke has taken place.

  19. Evaluation of the house fly Musca domestica as a mechanical vector for an anthrax.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Antonio Fasanella

    Full Text Available Anthrax is a disease of human beings and animals caused by the encapsulated, spore-forming, Bacillus anthracis. The potential role of insects in the spread of B. anthracis to humans and domestic animals during an anthrax outbreak has been confirmed by many studies. Among insect vectors, the house fly Musca domestica is considered a potential agent for disease transmission. In this study, laboratory-bred specimens of Musca domestica were infected by feeding on anthrax-infected rabbit carcass or anthrax contaminated blood, and the presence of anthrax spores in their spots (faeces and vomitus was microbiologically monitored. It was also evaluated if the anthrax spores were able to germinate and replicate in the gut content of insects. These results confirmed the role of insects in spreading anthrax infection. This role, although not major, given the huge size of fly populations often associated with anthrax epidemics in domestic animals, cannot be neglected from an epidemiological point of view and suggest that fly control should be considered as part of anthrax control programs.

  20. Ecological suitability modeling for anthrax in the Kruger National Park, South Africa.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pieter Johan Steenkamp

    Full Text Available The spores of the soil-borne bacterium, Bacillus anthracis, which causes anthrax are highly resistant to adverse environmental conditions. Under ideal conditions, anthrax spores can survive for many years in the soil. Anthrax is known to be endemic in the northern part of Kruger National Park (KNP in South Africa (SA, with occasional epidemics spreading southward. The aim of this study was to identify and map areas that are ecologically suitable for the harboring of B. anthracis spores within the KNP. Anthrax surveillance data and selected environmental variables were used as inputs to the maximum entropy (Maxent species distribution modeling method. Anthrax positive carcasses from 1988-2011 in KNP (n = 597 and a total of 40 environmental variables were used to predict and evaluate their relative contribution to suitability for anthrax occurrence in KNP. The environmental variables that contributed the most to the occurrence of anthrax were soil type, normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI and precipitation. Apart from the endemic Pafuri region, several other areas within KNP were classified as ecologically suitable. The outputs of this study could guide future surveillance efforts to focus on predicted suitable areas for anthrax, since the KNP currently uses passive surveillance to detect anthrax outbreaks.

  1. Integrated MOSFET-Embedded-Cantilever-Based Biosensor Characteristic for Detection of Anthrax Simulant

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Mostafa, Salwa [University of Tennessee, Knoxville (UTK); Lee, Ida [ORNL; Islam, Syed K [University of Tennessee, Knoxville (UTK); Eliza, Sazia A. [University of Tennessee, Knoxville (UTK); Shekhawat, Gajendra [Northwestern University, Evanston; Dravid, Vinayak [Northwestern University, Evanston; Tulip, Fahmida S [ORNL

    2011-01-01

    In this work, MOSFET-embedded cantilevers are configured as microbial sensors for detection of anthrax simulants, Bacillus thuringiensis. Anthrax simulants attached to the chemically treated gold-coated cantilever cause changes in the MOSFET drain current due to the bending of the cantilever which indicates the detection of anthrax simulant. Electrical properties of the anthrax simulant are also responsible for the change in the drain current. The test results suggest a detection range of 10 L of stimulant test solution (a suspension population of 1.3 107 colony-forming units/mL diluted in 40% ethanol and 60% deionized water) with a linear response of 31 A/ L.

  2. Bioterrorism: toxins as weapons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Anderson, Peter D

    2012-04-01

    The potential for biological weapons to be used in terrorism is a real possibility. Biological weapons include infectious agents and toxins. Toxins are poisons produced by living organisms. Toxins relevant to bioterrorism include ricin, botulinum, Clostridium perfrigens epsilson toxin, conotoxins, shigatoxins, saxitoxins, tetrodotoxins, mycotoxins, and nicotine. Toxins have properties of biological and chemical weapons. Unlike pathogens, toxins do not produce an infection. Ricin causes multiorgan toxicity by blocking protein synthesis. Botulinum blocks acetylcholine in the peripheral nervous system leading to muscle paralysis. Epsilon toxin damages cell membranes. Conotoxins block potassium and sodium channels in neurons. Shigatoxins inhibit protein synthesis and induce apoptosis. Saxitoxin and tetrodotoxin inhibit sodium channels in neurons. Mycotoxins include aflatoxins and trichothecenes. Aflatoxins are carcinogens. Trichothecenes inhibit protein and nucleic acid synthesis. Nicotine produces numerous nicotinic effects in the nervous system.

  3. [Anthrax in the canton of Zurich between 1878 and 2005].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brandes Ammann, A; Brandl, H

    2007-07-01

    Historical records reporting cases of animal anthrax in the canton of Zurich between 1878 and 2005 were analysed on the level of political communities regarding occurrence and number of cases, animals affected, and number of communities affected. Data were correlated with industrial activities (tanning, wool and horse hair processing) in a community and to the prevailing meteorological conditions. A total of 830 cases of animal anthrax has been recorded in 140 of 171 communities. Occurrence correlated with industrial activities in a community such as companies handling potentially contaminated materials (hides, fur, wool, hair, meat, or bone meal). The influence of wool processing companies (P = 0. 004) and tanneries (P = 0. 032) was significant whereas horse hair processing had no effect. However, a statistical relationship between the number of cases reported and meteorological data (rainfall, mean temperature) was not found.

  4. Three Models of Anthrax Toxin Effects on the MAP-Kinase Pathway and Macrophage Survival

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Schneider, Daniel J

    2008-01-01

    .... This research modifies three published MAPK models to reflect this signal inhibition and to estimate a first-order reaction rate by fitting the models to published viability data for two macrophage...

  5. Anthrax Lethal Toxin Impairs Innate Immune Functions of Alveolar Macrophages and Facilitates Bacillus anthracis Survival

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Ribot, Wilson J; Panchal, Rekha G; Brittingham, Katherine C; Ruthel, Gordon; Kenny, Tara A; Lane, Douglas; Curry, Bob; Hoover, Timothy A; Friedlander, Arthur M; Bavari, Sina

    2006-01-01

    Alveolar macrophages (AM) are very important for pulmonary innate immune responses against invading inhaled pathogens because they directly kill the organisms and initiate a cascade of innate and adaptive immune responses...

  6. Three Models of Anthrax Toxin Effects on the MAP-Kinase Pathway and Macrophage Survival

    Science.gov (United States)

    2008-03-01

    2005). Apic, Gordana, Tijana Ignjatovic, Scott Boyer , and Robert B. Russell. “Illuminating drug discovery with biological pathways,” FEBS Letters...Molecular Biology Reviews, 68(2): 320–344 (June 2004). Sauro, Herbert M. and Boris N. Kholodenko. “Quantitative analysis of signaling networks

  7. [Anthrax meningoencephalitis: a case following a cutaneous lesion in Morocco].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ziadi, A; Hachimi, A; Soraa, N; Tassi, N; Nejmi, H; Elkhayari, M; Samkaoui, M A

    2014-05-01

    Anthrax meningoencephalitis is very rare especially following skin location. We report a case of meningoencephalitis secondary to skin lesion. The diagnosis is based on clinical presentation and confirmed by microbiological tests. Its evolution remains fatal despite aggressive resuscitation. Copyright © 2014 Société française d’anesthésie et de réanimation (Sfar). Published by Elsevier SAS. All rights reserved.

  8. America’s Food: Does Anthrax Pose A Threat?

    Science.gov (United States)

    2002-04-01

    a 1996 JAMA article, “Unexplained Severe Illness Possibly Associated with Consumption of Kombucha Tea - Iowa 1995.”13 For clarification, the... Kombucha “mush- room” is a “ symbiotic colony of several species of yeast and bacteria that are bound to- gether by a surrounding membrane.”14 Dr. Sadjadi...described an outbreak in Iran of cuta- 9 neous anthrax related to the Kombucha mushroom. In 1996 in a village on the outskirts of Tehran, 20 people

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ascough, Stephanie; Ingram, Rebecca J; Chu, Karen K; Reynolds, Catherine J; Musson, Julie A; Doganay, Mehmet; Metan, Gökhan; Ozkul, Yusuf; Baillie, Les; Sriskandan, Shiranee; Moore, Stephen J; Gallagher, Theresa B; Dyson, Hugh; Williamson, E Diane; Robinson, John H; Maillere, Bernard; Boyton, Rosemary J; Altmann, Daniel M

    2014-05-01

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

  10. Modeling the Ecological Niche of Bacillus anthracis to Map Anthrax Risk in Kyrgyzstan.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blackburn, Jason K; Matakarimov, Saitbek; Kozhokeeva, Sabira; Tagaeva, Zhyldyz; Bell, Lindsay K; Kracalik, Ian T; Zhunushov, Asankadyr

    2017-03-01

    AbstractAnthrax, caused by the environmental bacterium Bacillus anthracis , is an important zoonosis nearly worldwide. In Central Asia, anthrax represents a major veterinary and public health concern. In the Republic of Kyrgyzstan, ongoing anthrax outbreaks have been reported in humans associated with handling infected livestock and contaminated animal by-products such as meat or hides. The current anthrax situation has prompted calls for improved insights into the epidemiology, ecology, and spatial distribution of the disease in Kyrgyzstan to better inform control and surveillance. Disease control for both humans and livestock relies on annual livestock vaccination ahead of outbreaks. Toward this, we used a historic database of livestock anthrax reported from 1932 to 2006 mapped at high resolution to develop an ecological niche model-based prediction of B. anthracis across Kyrgyzstan and identified spatial clusters of livestock anthrax using a cluster morphology statistic. We also defined the seasonality of outbreaks in livestock. Cattle were the most frequently reported across the time period, with the greatest number of cases in late summer months. Our niche models defined four areas as suitable to support pathogen persistence, the plateaus near Talas and Bishkek, the valleys of western Kyrgyzstan along the Fergana Valley, and the low-lying areas along the shore of Lake Isyk-Kul. These areas should be considered "at risk" for livestock anthrax and subsequent human cases. Areas defined by the niche models can be used to prioritize anthrax surveillance and inform efforts to target livestock vaccination campaigns.

  11. The pattern of anthrax cases on livestock in West Nusa Tenggara Province

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Enymartindah

    1998-03-01

    Full Text Available A retrospective study on anthrax in endemic area was carried out from 1984 to 1994 in West Nusa Tenggara Province (NTB to uncover the occurrence of anthrax and the pattern of the disease in livestock. Data of anthrax incidence had been compiled for the 11 years from Animal Health Section and Type B Laboratory of the Livestock Service Office, NTB Province in Mataram. This was done to get the information about locations and times when the cases occurred, and the vaccination status of livestock in the anthrax area. The pattern of anthrax in livestock was analyzed by using time series analysis, and the long term trend was then illustrated by linier regression . During the years, anthrax cases in livestock were reported high in Sumbawa island, while the cases in Lombok island were relatively low. There were no anthrax cases reported from East Lombok District . The long term trend of anthrax occurrence in livestock from 1984 to 1994 tended to decrease (Y= 6,04 - 0,0162 X.

  12. [Intoxication of botulinum toxin].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chudzicka, Aleksandra

    2015-09-01

    Botulinum toxin is an egzotoxin produced by Gram positive bacteria Clostridium botulinum. It is among the most potent toxins known. The 3 main clinical presentations of botulism are as follows: foodborne botulism, infant botulism and wound botulism. The main symptom of intoxication is flat muscles paralysis. The treatment is supportive care and administration of antitoxin. In prevention the correct preparing of canned food is most important. Botulinum toxin is accepted as a biological weapon. © 2015 MEDPRESS.

  13. Phase I study of safety and immunogenicity of an Escherichia coli-derived recombinant protective antigen (rPA) vaccine to prevent anthrax in adults.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brown, Bruce K; Cox, Josephine; Gillis, Anita; VanCott, Thomas C; Marovich, Mary; Milazzo, Mark; Antonille, Tanya Santelli; Wieczorek, Lindsay; McKee, Kelly T; Metcalfe, Karen; Mallory, Raburn M; Birx, Deborah; Polonis, Victoria R; Robb, Merlin L

    2010-11-05

    The fatal disease caused by Bacillus anthracis is preventable with a prophylactic vaccine. The currently available anthrax vaccine requires a lengthy immunization schedule, and simpler and more immunogenic options for protection against anthrax are a priority for development. In this report we describe a phase I clinical trial testing the safety and immunogenicity of an anthrax vaccine using recombinant Escherichia coli-derived, B. anthracis protective antigen (rPA). A total of 73 healthy adults ages 18-40 were enrolled and 67 received 2 injections separated by 4 weeks of either buffered saline placebo, or rPA formulated with or without 704 µg/ml Alhydrogel® adjuvant in increasing doses (5, 25, 50, 100 µg) of rPA. Participants were followed for one year and safety and immunologic data were assessed. Tenderness and warmth were the most common post-injection site reactions. No serious adverse events related to the vaccine were observed. The most robust humoral immune responses were observed in subjects receiving 50 µg of rPA formulated with Alhydrogel® with a geometric mean concentration of anti-rPA IgG antibodies of 283 µg/ml and a toxin neutralizing geometric 50% reciprocal geometric mean titer of 1061. The highest lymphoproliferative peak cellular response (median Lymphocyte Stimulation Index of 29) was observed in the group receiving 25 µg Alhydrogel®-formulated rPA. The vaccine was safe, well tolerated and stimulated a robust humoral and cellular response after two doses. ClinicalTrials.gov NCT00057525.

  14. EGA Protects Mammalian Cells from Clostridium difficile CDT, Clostridium perfringens Iota Toxin and Clostridium botulinum C2 Toxin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schnell, Leonie; Mittler, Ann-Katrin; Sadi, Mirko; Popoff, Michel R; Schwan, Carsten; Aktories, Klaus; Mattarei, Andrea; Azarnia Tehran, Domenico; Montecucco, Cesare; Barth, Holger

    2016-04-01

    The pathogenic bacteria Clostridium difficile, Clostridium perfringens and Clostridium botulinum produce the binary actin ADP-ribosylating toxins CDT, iota and C2, respectively. These toxins are composed of a transport component (B) and a separate enzyme component (A). When both components assemble on the surface of mammalian target cells, the B components mediate the entry of the A components via endosomes into the cytosol. Here, the A components ADP-ribosylate G-actin, resulting in depolymerization of F-actin, cell-rounding and eventually death. In the present study, we demonstrate that 4-bromobenzaldehyde N-(2,6-dimethylphenyl)semicarbazone (EGA), a compound that protects cells from multiple toxins and viruses, also protects different mammalian epithelial cells from all three binary actin ADP-ribosylating toxins. In contrast, EGA did not inhibit the intoxication of cells with Clostridium difficile toxins A and B, indicating a possible different entry route for this toxin. EGA does not affect either the binding of the C2 toxin to the cells surface or the enzyme activity of the A components of CDT, iota and C2, suggesting that this compound interferes with cellular uptake of the toxins. Moreover, for C2 toxin, we demonstrated that EGA inhibits the pH-dependent transport of the A component across cell membranes. EGA is not cytotoxic, and therefore, we propose it as a lead compound for the development of novel pharmacological inhibitors against clostridial binary actin ADP-ribosylating toxins.

  15. EGA Protects Mammalian Cells from Clostridium difficile CDT, Clostridium perfringens Iota Toxin and Clostridium botulinum C2 Toxin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schnell, Leonie; Mittler, Ann-Katrin; Sadi, Mirko; Popoff, Michel R.; Schwan, Carsten; Aktories, Klaus; Mattarei, Andrea; Tehran, Domenico Azarnia; Montecucco, Cesare; Barth, Holger

    2016-01-01

    The pathogenic bacteria Clostridium difficile, Clostridium perfringens and Clostridium botulinum produce the binary actin ADP-ribosylating toxins CDT, iota and C2, respectively. These toxins are composed of a transport component (B) and a separate enzyme component (A). When both components assemble on the surface of mammalian target cells, the B components mediate the entry of the A components via endosomes into the cytosol. Here, the A components ADP-ribosylate G-actin, resulting in depolymerization of F-actin, cell-rounding and eventually death. In the present study, we demonstrate that 4-bromobenzaldehyde N-(2,6-dimethylphenyl)semicarbazone (EGA), a compound that protects cells from multiple toxins and viruses, also protects different mammalian epithelial cells from all three binary actin ADP-ribosylating toxins. In contrast, EGA did not inhibit the intoxication of cells with Clostridium difficile toxins A and B, indicating a possible different entry route for this toxin. EGA does not affect either the binding of the C2 toxin to the cells surface or the enzyme activity of the A components of CDT, iota and C2, suggesting that this compound interferes with cellular uptake of the toxins. Moreover, for C2 toxin, we demonstrated that EGA inhibits the pH-dependent transport of the A component across cell membranes. EGA is not cytotoxic, and therefore, we propose it as a lead compound for the development of novel pharmacological inhibitors against clostridial binary actin ADP-ribosylating toxins. PMID:27043629

  16. Structure, Function and Evolution of Clostridium botulinum C2 and C3 Toxins: Insight to Poultry and Veterinary Vaccines.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chellapandi, Paulchamy; Prisilla, Arokiyasamy

    2017-01-01

    Clostridium botulinum group III strains are able to produce cytotoxins, C2 toxin and C3 exotoxin, along with botulinum neurotoxin types C and D. C2 toxin and C3 exotoxin produced by this organism are the most important members of bacterial ADP-ribosyltransferase superfamily. Both toxins have distinct pathophysiological functions in the avian and mammalian hosts. The members of this superfamily transfer an ADP-ribose moiety of NAD+ to specific eukaryotic target proteins. The present review describes the structure, function and evolution aspects of these toxins with a special emphasis to the development of veterinary vaccines. C2 toxin is a binary toxin that consists of a catalytic subunit (C2I) and a translocation subunit (C2II). C2I component is structurally and functionally similar to the VIP2 and iota A toxin whereas C2II component shows a significant homology with the protective antigen from anthrax toxin and iota B. Unlike C2 toxin, C3 toxin is devoid of translocation/binding subunit. Extensive studies on their sequence-structure-function link spawn additional efforts to understand the catalytic mechanisms and target recognition. Structural and functional relationships with them are often determined by using evolutionary constraints as valuable biological measures. Enzyme-deficient mutants derived from these toxins have been used as drug/protein delivery systems in eukaryotic cells. Thus, current knowledge on their molecular diversity is a well-known perspective to design immunotoxin or subunit vaccine for C. botulinum infection. Copyright© Bentham Science Publishers; For any queries, please email at epub@benthamscience.org.

  17. Analysing the spatial patterns of livestock anthrax in Kazakhstan in relation to environmental factors: a comparison of local (Gi* and morphology cluster statistics

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ian T. Kracalik

    2012-11-01

    Full Text Available We compared a local clustering and a cluster morphology statistic using anthrax outbreaks in large (cattle and small (sheep and goats domestic ruminants across Kazakhstan. The Getis-Ord (Gi* statistic and a multidirectional optimal ecotope algorithm (AMOEBA were compared using 1st, 2nd and 3rd order Rook contiguity matrices. Multivariate statistical tests were used to evaluate the environmental signatures between clusters and non-clusters from the AMOEBA and Gi* tests. A logistic regression was used to define a risk surface for anthrax outbreaks and to compare agreement between clustering methodologies. Tests revealed differences in the spatial distribution of clusters as well as the total number of clusters in large ruminants for AMOEBA (n = 149 and for small ruminants (n = 9. In contrast, Gi* revealed fewer large ruminant clusters (n = 122 and more small ruminant clusters (n = 61. Significant environmental differences were found between groups using the Kruskall-Wallis and Mann- Whitney U tests. Logistic regression was used to model the presence/absence of anthrax outbreaks and define a risk surface for large ruminants to compare with cluster analyses. The model predicted 32.2% of the landscape as high risk. Approximately 75% of AMOEBA clusters corresponded to predicted high risk, compared with ~64% of Gi* clusters. In general, AMOEBA predicted more irregularly shaped clusters of outbreaks in both livestock groups, while Gi* tended to predict larger, circular clusters. Here we provide an evaluation of both tests and a discussion of the use of each to detect environmental conditions associated with anthrax outbreak clusters in domestic livestock. These findings illustrate important differences in spatial statistical methods for defining local clusters and highlight the importance of selecting appropriate levels of data aggregation.

  18. Diphtheria toxin translocation across cellular membranes is regulated by sphingolipids

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Spilsberg, Bjorn; Hanada, Kentaro; Sandvig, Kirsten

    2005-01-01

    Diphtheria toxin is translocated across cellular membranes when receptor-bound toxin is exposed to low pH. To study the role of sphingolipids for toxin translocation, both a mutant cell line lacking the first enzyme in de novo sphingolipid synthesis, serine palmitoyltransferase, and a specific inhibitor of the same enzyme, myriocin, were used. The serine palmitoyltransferase-deficient cell line (LY-B) was found to be 10-15 times more sensitive to diphtheria toxin than the genetically complemented cell line (LY-B/cLCB1) and the wild-type cell line (CHO-K1), both when toxin translocation directly across the plasma membrane was induced by exposing cells with surface-bound toxin to low pH, and when the toxin followed its normal route via acidified endosomes into the cytosol. Toxin binding was similar in these three cell lines. Furthermore, inhibition of serine palmitoyltransferase activity by addition of myriocin sensitized the two control cell lines (LY-B/cLCB1 and CHO-K1) to diphtheria toxin, whereas, as expected, no effect was observed in cells lacking serine palmitoyltransferase (LY-B). In conclusion, diphtheria toxin translocation is facilitated by depletion of membrane sphingolipids

  19. DUST-BATHING BEHAVIORS OF AFRICAN HERBIVORES AND THE POTENTIAL RISK OF INHALATIONAL ANTHRAX.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barandongo, Zoe R; Mfune, John K E; Turner, Wendy C

    2018-01-01

    :  Anthrax in herbivorous wildlife and livestock is generally assumed to be transmitted via ingestion or inhalation of Bacillus anthracis spores. Although recent studies have highlighted the importance of the ingestion route for anthrax transmission, little is known about the inhalational route in natural systems. Dust bathing could aerosolize soilborne pathogens such as B. anthracis, exposing dust-bathing individuals to inhalational infections. We investigated the potential role of dust bathing in the transmission of inhalational anthrax to herbivorous wildlife in Etosha National Park, Namibia, an area with endemic seasonal anthrax outbreaks. We 1) cultured soils from dust-bathing sites for the presence and concentration of B. anthracis spores, 2) monitored anthrax carcass sites, the locations with the highest B. anthracis concentrations, for evidence of dust bathing, including a site where a zebra died of anthrax on a large dust bath, and 3) characterized the ecology and seasonality of dust bathing in plains zebra ( Equus quagga), blue wildebeest ( Connochaetes taurinus), and African savanna elephant ( Loxodonta africana) using a combination of motion-sensing camera traps and direct observations. Only two out of 83 dust-bath soils were positive for B. anthracis, both with low spore concentrations (≤20 colony-forming units per gram). We also detected no evidence of dust baths occurring at anthrax carcass sites, perhaps due to carcass-induced changes in soil composition that may deter dust bathing. Finally, despite observing some seasonal variation in dust bathing, preliminary evidence suggests that the seasonality of dust bathing and anthrax mortalities are not correlated. Thus, although dust bathing creates a dramatic cloud of aerosolized soil around an individual, our microbiologic, ecologic, and behavioral results in concert demonstrate that dust bathing is highly unlikely to transmit inhalational anthrax infections.

  20. Mapping the Distribution of Anthrax in Mainland China, 2005-2013.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wan-Jun Chen

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available Anthrax, a global re-emerging zoonotic disease in recent years is enzootic in mainland China. Despite its significance to the public health, spatiotemporal distributions of the disease in human and livestock and its potential driving factors remain poorly understood.Using the national surveillance data of human and livestock anthrax from 2005 to 2013, we conducted a retrospective epidemiological study and risk assessment of anthrax in mainland China. The potential determinants for the temporal and spatial distributions of human anthrax were also explored. We found that the majority of human anthrax cases were located in six provinces in western and northeastern China, and five clustering areas with higher incidences were identified. The disease mostly peaked in July or August, and males aged 30-49 years had higher incidence than other subgroups. Monthly incidence of human anthrax was positively correlated with monthly average temperature, relative humidity and monthly accumulative rainfall with lags of 0-2 months. A boosted regression trees (BRT model at the county level reveals that densities of cattle, sheep and human, coverage of meadow, coverage of typical grassland, elevation, coverage of topsoil with pH > 6.1, concentration of organic carbon in topsoil, and the meteorological factors have contributed substantially to the spatial distribution of the disease. The model-predicted probability of occurrence of human cases in mainland China was mapped at the county level.Anthrax in China was characterized by significant seasonality and spatial clustering. The spatial distribution of human anthrax was largely driven by livestock husbandry, human density, land cover, elevation, topsoil features and climate. Enhanced surveillance and intervention for livestock and human anthrax in the high-risk regions, particularly on the Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau, is the key to the prevention of human infections.

  1. Microalgal toxin(s): characteristics and importance

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Prokaryotic and eukaryotic microalgae produce a wide array of compounds with biological activities. These include antibiotics, algicides, toxins, pharmaceutically active compounds and plant growth regulators. Toxic microalgae, in this sense, are common only among the cyanobacteria and dinoflagellates. The microalgal ...

  2. Defining Moments in MMWR History: CDC's Response to Intentional Release of Anthrax - 2001

    Centers for Disease Control (CDC) Podcasts

    On October 4, 2001, shortly after the September 11 attacks in New York City and Washington, DC, the Palm Beach County Health Department, the Florida State Department of Health, and CDC reported a case of anthrax in a 63-year-old man from Florida. This case was first reported in MMWR and marked the beginning of a series of anthrax cases that resulted from intentional delivery of Bacillus anthracis spores sent through the mail. In this podcast, Dr. Sherif Zaki recalls CDC's investigation and response to the anthrax attacks.

  3. PREDICTION OF AEROSOL HAZARDS ARISING FROM THE OPENING OF AN ANTHRAX-TAINTED LETTER IN AN OPEN OFFICE ENVIRONMENT USING COMPUTATIONAL FLUID DYNAMICS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    FUE-SANG LIEN

    2010-09-01

    Full Text Available Early experimental work, conducted at Defence R&D Canada–Suffield, measured and characterized the personal and environmental contamination associated with simulated anthrax-tainted letters under a number of different scenarios in order to obtain a better understanding of the physical and biological processes for detecting, assessing, and formulating potential mitigation strategies for managing the risks associated with opening an anthrax-tainted letter. These experimental investigations have been extended in the present study to simulate numerically the contamination from the opening of anthrax-tainted letters in an open office environment using computational fluid dynamics (CFD. A quantity of 0.1 g of Bacillus atropheus (formerly referred to as Bacillus subtilis var globigii (BG spores in dry powder form, which was used here as a surrogate species for Bacillus anthracis (anthrax, was released from an opened letter in the experiment. The accuracy of the model for prediction of the spatial distribution of BG spores in the office from the opened letter is assessed qualitatively (and to the extent possible, quantitatively by detailed comparison with measured BG concentrations obtained under a number of different scenarios, some involving people moving within the office. The observed discrepancy between the numerical predictions and experimental measurements of concentration was probably the result of a number of physical processes which were not accounted for in the numerical simulation. These include air flow leakage from cracks and crevices of the building shell; the dispersion of BG spores in the Heating, Ventilation, and Air Conditioning (HVAC system; and, the effect of deposition and re-suspension of BG spores from various surfaces in the office environment.

  4. Retrograde transport of protein toxins through the Golgi apparatus

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Sandvig, Kirsten; Skotland, Tore; van Deurs, Bo

    2013-01-01

    at the cell surface, and they are endocytosed both by clathrin-dependent and clathrin-independent mechanisms. Sorting to the Golgi and retrograde transport to the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) are common to these toxins, but the exact mechanisms turn out to be toxin and cell-type dependent. In the ER...

  5. Loading and Light Degradation Characteristics of B t Toxin on Nano goethite: A Potential Material for Controlling the Environmental Risk of B t Toxin

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Zhou, X.; She, Ch.; She, Ch.; Liu, H.

    2015-01-01

    Transgenic B t-modified crops release toxins into soil through root exudate s and upon decomposition of residues. The fate of these toxins in soil has not been yet clearly elucidated. Nano goethite was found to have a different influence on the lifetime and identicalness activity of B t toxin. The aim of this study was to elucidate the adsorption characteristics of B t toxin on nano goethite and its activity changes before and after adsorption. The adsorption of toxin on nano goethite reached equilibrium within 5 h, and the adsorption isotherm of B t toxin on nano goethite conformed to the Langmuir equation (). In the range of ph from 6.0 to 8.0, larger adsorption occurred at lower ph value. The toxin adsorption decreased with the temperature between 10 and 50 degree. The results of Ftir, XRD, and SEM indicated that toxin did not influence the structure of nano goethite and the adsorption of toxin only on the surface of nano goethite. The LC_5_0 value for bound toxin was higher than that of free toxin, and the nano goethite greatly accelerated the degradation of toxin by ultraviolet irradiation. The above results suggested that nano goethite is a potential material for controlling the environmental risk of toxin released by Bt transgenic plants

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sunil K Joshi

    2009-09-01

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

  7. Topical botulinum toxin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Collins, Ashley; Nasir, Adnan

    2010-03-01

    Nanotechnology is a rapidly growing discipline that capitalizes on the unique properties of matter engineered on the nanoscale. Vehicles incorporating nanotechnology have led to great strides in drug delivery, allowing for increased active ingredient stability, bioavailability, and site-specific targeting. Botulinum toxin has historically been used for the correction of neurological and neuromuscular disorders, such as torticollis, blepharospasm, and strabismus. Recent dermatological indications have been for the management of axillary hyperhydrosis and facial rhytides. Traditional methods of botulinum toxin delivery have been needle-based. These have been associated with increased pain and cost. Newer methods of botulinum toxin formulation have yielded topical preparations that are bioactive in small pilot clinical studies. While there are some risks associated with topical delivery, the refinement and standardization of delivery systems and techniques for the topical administration of botulinum toxin using nanotechnology is anticipated in the near future.

  8. Cellular Uptake of the Clostridium perfringens Binary Iota-Toxin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blöcker, Dagmar; Behlke, Joachim; Aktories, Klaus; Barth, Holger

    2001-01-01

    The binary iota-toxin is produced by Clostridium perfringens type E strains and consists of two separate proteins, the binding component iota b (98 kDa) and an actin-ADP-ribosylating enzyme component iota a (47 kDa). Iota b binds to the cell surface receptor and mediates the translocation of iota a into the cytosol. Here we studied the cellular uptake of iota-toxin into Vero cells. Bafilomycin A1, but not brefeldin A or nocodazole, inhibited the cytotoxic effects of iota-toxin, indicating that toxin is translocated from an endosomal compartment into the cytoplasm. Acidification (pH ≤ 5.0) of the extracellular medium enabled iota a to directly enter the cytosol in the presence of iota b. Activation by chymotrypsin induced oligomerization of iota b in solution. An average mass of 530 ± 28 kDa for oligomers was determined by analytical ultracentrifugation, indicating heptamer formation. The entry of iota-toxin into polarized CaCo-2 cells was studied by measuring the decrease in transepithelial resistance after toxin treatment. Iota-toxin led to a significant decrease in resistance when it was applied to the basolateral surface of the cells but not following application to the apical surface, indicating a polarized localization of the iota-toxin receptor. PMID:11292715

  9. Whole Genome Analysis of Injectional Anthrax Identifies Two Disease Clusters Spanning More Than 13 Years

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Paul Keim

    2015-11-01

    Lay Person Interpretation: Injectional anthrax has been plaguing heroin drug users across Europe for more than 10 years. In order to better understand this outbreak, we assessed genomic relationships of all available injectional anthrax strains from four countries spanning a >12 year period. Very few differences were identified using genome-based analysis, but these differentiated the isolates into two distinct clusters. This strongly supports a hypothesis of at least two separate anthrax spore contamination events perhaps during the drug production processes. Identification of two events would not have been possible from standard epidemiological analysis. These comprehensive data will be invaluable for classifying future injectional anthrax isolates and for future geographic attribution.

  10. Persistent anthrax as a major driver of wildlife mortality in a tropical rainforest.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hoffmann, Constanze; Zimmermann, Fee; Biek, Roman; Kuehl, Hjalmar; Nowak, Kathrin; Mundry, Roger; Agbor, Anthony; Angedakin, Samuel; Arandjelovic, Mimi; Blankenburg, Anja; Brazolla, Gregory; Corogenes, Katherine; Couacy-Hymann, Emmanuel; Deschner, Tobias; Dieguez, Paula; Dierks, Karsten; Düx, Ariane; Dupke, Susann; Eshuis, Henk; Formenty, Pierre; Yuh, Yisa Ginath; Goedmakers, Annemarie; Gogarten, Jan F; Granjon, Anne-Céline; McGraw, Scott; Grunow, Roland; Hart, John; Jones, Sorrel; Junker, Jessica; Kiang, John; Langergraber, Kevin; Lapuente, Juan; Lee, Kevin; Leendertz, Siv Aina; Léguillon, Floraine; Leinert, Vera; Löhrich, Therese; Marrocoli, Sergio; Mätz-Rensing, Kerstin; Meier, Amelia; Merkel, Kevin; Metzger, Sonja; Murai, Mizuki; Niedorf, Svenja; De Nys, Hélène; Sachse, Andreas; van Schijndel, Joost; Thiesen, Ulla; Ton, Els; Wu, Doris; Wieler, Lothar H; Boesch, Christophe; Klee, Silke R; Wittig, Roman M; Calvignac-Spencer, Sébastien; Leendertz, Fabian H

    2017-08-02

    Anthrax is a globally important animal disease and zoonosis. Despite this, our current knowledge of anthrax ecology is largely limited to arid ecosystems, where outbreaks are most commonly reported. Here we show that the dynamics of an anthrax-causing agent, Bacillus cereus biovar anthracis, in a tropical rainforest have severe consequences for local wildlife communities. Using data and samples collected over three decades, we show that rainforest anthrax is a persistent and widespread cause of death for a broad range of mammalian hosts. We predict that this pathogen will accelerate the decline and possibly result in the extirpation of local chimpanzee (Pan troglodytes verus) populations. We present the epidemiology of a cryptic pathogen and show that its presence has important implications for conservation.

  11. Enhancement of an Analytical Method for the Determination of Squalene in Anthrax Vaccine Absorbed Formulations

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Spanggord, Ronald J; Sun, Meg; Lim, Peter; Ellis, William Y

    2006-01-01

    Specific lots of anthrax vaccine adsorbed administered to members of the U.S. Armed Forces have been alleged to contain squalene, a chemical purported to be associated with illnesses of Gulf War veterans...

  12. Efficacy of Oritavancin in a Murine Model of Bacillus anthracis Spore Inhalation Anthrax

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Heine, H. S; Bassett, J; Miller, L; Bassett, A; Ivins, B. E; Lehous, D; Arhin, F. F; Parr, Jr., T. R; Moeck, G

    2008-01-01

    The inhaled form of Bacillus anthracis infection may be fatal to humans. The current standard of care for inhalational anthrax postexposure prophylaxis is ciprofloxacin therapy twice daily for 60 days...

  13. Persistent anthrax as a major driver of wildlife mortality in a tropical rainforest

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hoffmann, Constanze; Zimmermann, Fee; Biek, Roman; Kuehl, Hjalmar; Nowak, Kathrin; Mundry, Roger; Agbor, Anthony; Angedakin, Samuel; Arandjelovic, Mimi; Blankenburg, Anja; Brazolla, Gregory; Corogenes, Katherine; Couacy-Hymann, Emmanuel; Deschner, Tobias; Dieguez, Paula; Dierks, Karsten; Düx, Ariane; Dupke, Susann; Eshuis, Henk; Formenty, Pierre; Yuh, Yisa Ginath; Goedmakers, Annemarie; Gogarten, Jan F.; Granjon, Anne-Céline; McGraw, Scott; Grunow, Roland; Hart, John; Jones, Sorrel; Junker, Jessica; Kiang, John; Langergraber, Kevin; Lapuente, Juan; Lee, Kevin; Leendertz, Siv Aina; Léguillon, Floraine; Leinert, Vera; Löhrich, Therese; Marrocoli, Sergio; Mätz-Rensing, Kerstin; Meier, Amelia; Merkel, Kevin; Metzger, Sonja; Murai, Mizuki; Niedorf, Svenja; de Nys, Hélène; Sachse, Andreas; van Schijndel, Joost; Thiesen, Ulla; Ton, Els; Wu, Doris; Wieler, Lothar H.; Boesch, Christophe; Klee, Silke R.; Wittig, Roman M.; Calvignac-Spencer, Sébastien; Leendertz, Fabian H.

    2017-08-01

    Anthrax is a globally important animal disease and zoonosis. Despite this, our current knowledge of anthrax ecology is largely limited to arid ecosystems, where outbreaks are most commonly reported. Here we show that the dynamics of an anthrax-causing agent, Bacillus cereus biovar anthracis, in a tropical rainforest have severe consequences for local wildlife communities. Using data and samples collected over three decades, we show that rainforest anthrax is a persistent and widespread cause of death for a broad range of mammalian hosts. We predict that this pathogen will accelerate the decline and possibly result in the extirpation of local chimpanzee (Pan troglodytes verus) populations. We present the epidemiology of a cryptic pathogen and show that its presence has important implications for conservation.

  14. The Importance of Health Risk Communication in the Creation of the Anthrax Vaccine Immunization Program

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Freeman, Bradley

    2001-01-01

    ... press. This paper suggests that a more proactive educational program with a greater utilization of health risk communication techniques would have reduced much of the negative reaction to the anthrax vaccine...

  15. Soil geochemical parameters influencing the spatial distribution of anthrax in Northwest Minnesota, USA

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Nath, Samuel; Dere, Ashlee

    2016-01-01

    Bacillus anthracis is the pathogenic bacterium that causes anthrax, which dwells in soils as highly resilient endospores. B. anthracis spore viability in soil is dependent upon environmental conditions, but the soil properties necessary for spore survival are unclear. In this study we used a range of soil geochemical and physical parameters to predict the spatial distribution of B. anthracis in northwest Minnesota, where 64 cases of anthrax in livestock were reported from 2000 to 2013. Two modeling approaches at different spatial scales were used to identify the soil conditions most correlated to known anthrax cases using both statewide and locally collected soil data. Ecological niche models were constructed using the Maximum Entropy (Maxent) approach and included 11 soil parameters as environmental inputs and recorded anthrax cases as known presences. One ecological niche model used soil data and anthrax presences for the entire state while a second model used locally sampled soil data (n = 125) and a subset of anthrax presences, providing a test of spatial scale. In addition, simple logistic regression models using the localized soil data served as an independent measure of variable importance. Maxent model results indicate that at a statewide level, soil calcium and magnesium concentrations, soil pH, and sand content are the most important properties for predicting soil suitability for B. anthracis while at the local level, clay and sand content along with phosphorous and strontium concentrations are most important. These results also show that the spatial scale of analysis is important when considering soil parameters most important for B. anthracis spores. For example, at a broad scale, B. anthracis spores may require Ca-rich soils and an alkaline pH, but may also concentrate in microenvironments with high Sr concentrations. The study is also one of the first ecological niche models that demonstrates the major importance of soil texture for defining

  16. [Properties of live antibiotics-resistant anthrax vaccine STI-PR after long-term storage].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aksenova, L Iu; Buravtseva, N P; Kogotkova, O I; Eremenko, E I; Tsygankova, O I

    2007-01-01

    Study showed that cultural, morphologic, genetic, immunologic characteristics, and resistance to antibiotics of STI-PR anthrax vaccine did not change after storage during 20 years in lyophilized condition. It has been shown that medium for lyophilization plays important role in preservation of vitality of anthrax spores. Optimal preservative properties have been observed for thioureal and sucrose-gelatinous media for lyophilization. Obtained results give reasons for prolongation of shelf live of STI-PR vaccine from 2 - 3 to 5 - 8 years.

  17. Microevolution of Anthrax from a Young Ancestor (M.A.Y.A. Suggests a Soil-Borne Life Cycle of Bacillus anthracis.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Peter Braun

    Full Text Available During an anthrax outbreak at the Pollino National Park (Basilicata, Italy in 2004, diseased cattle were buried and from these anthrax-foci Bacillus anthracis endospores still diffuse to the surface resulting in local accumulations. Recent data suggest that B. anthracis multiplies in soil outside the animal-host body. This notion is supported by the frequent isolation of B. anthracis from soil lacking one or both virulence plasmids. Such strains represent an evolutionary dead end, as they are likely no longer able to successfully infect new hosts. This loss of virulence plasmids is explained most simply by postulating a soil-borne life cycle of the pathogen. To test this hypothesis we investigated possible microevolution at two natural anthrax foci from the 2004 outbreak. If valid, then genotypes of strains isolated from near the surface at these foci should be on a different evolutionary trajectory from those below residing in deeper-laying horizons close to the carcass. Thus, the genetic diversity of B. anthracis isolates was compared conducting Progressive Hierarchical Resolving Assays using Nucleic Acids (PHRANA and next generation Whole Genome Sequencing (WGS. PHRANA was not discriminatory enough to resolve the fine genetic relationships between the isolates. Conversely, WGS of nine isolates from near-surface and nine from near-carcass revealed five isolate specific SNPs, four of which were found only in different near-surface isolates. In support of our hypothesis, one surface-isolate lacked plasmid pXO1 and also harbored one of the unique SNPs. Taken together, our results suggest a limited soil-borne life cycle of B. anthracis.

  18. Cutaneous anthrax in the northeast of Iran: A case report and review of the literature

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mohsen Karbalaei Zadeh Babaki

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available Bacillus anthracis is an aerobic, gram-positive, and spore-forming Bacillus species. The most common form of anthrax infection is the cutaneous form. The infection usually develops several days after exposure to products of infected animals and manifest as black sore with severe swelling on the skin.A 52-year-old female with a black and swollen lesion on her index finger presented to Ghaem Hospital, Mashhad, Iran, in October 2015. Biopsy and swab culture were performed immediately. Cutaneous anthrax was characterized by microscopic examination of B. anthracis spore using Gram staining. The patient was then treated with antibiotics after diagnosis.According to the reports of Provincial Health Center of Khorasan Razavi, northeast of Iran, no cases of anthrax have been reported in humans since 2013. There were neither occupational risk factors, nor any routine predisposing factors for acquiring anthrax in this woman. Although this patient is the first case reported with cutaneous anthrax since the past three years, two cases of sheep anthrax have been reported in Khorasan Razavi Province during 2013-2015. This patient had a history of contact with the skull of a slaughtered sheep. The patient was treated after making correct and rapid diagnosis and sufficient antibiotic therapy.

  19. Pathology of wild-type and toxin-independent Bacillus anthracis meningitis in rabbits.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Assa Sittner

    Full Text Available Hemorrhagic meningitis is considered a complication of anthrax and was reported in about 50% of deadly cases in humans and non-human primates (NHP. Recently we demonstrated in Guinea pigs and rabbits that 100% of the B. anthracis-infected animals presented histopathology of meningitis at the time of death, some without any sign of hemorrhage. A similar pathology was observed in animals that succumbed following infection with the toxin deficient mutant, thus indicating that anthrax meningitis is a toxin-independent phenomenon. In this manuscript we describe a histopathological study of the B. anthracis infection of the central nervous system (CNS. Though we could find sporadic growth of the bacteria around blood vessels in the cortex, we report that the main infiltration route is the choroid plexus. We found massive destruction of entire sections of the choroid plexus coupled with massive aggregation of bacilli in the ventricles, in close proximity to the parenchyma. The choroid plexus also contained significant amounts of intravascular bacterial aggregates, often enclosed in what appear to be fibrin-like clots. The high concentration of these aggregates in areas of significant tissue destruction combined with the fact that capsular B. anthracis bacteria have a low tendency to adhere to endothelial cells, might suggest that these clots are used as an adherence mechanism by the bacteria. The major histopathological finding is meningitis. We find massive bacterial growth in the meninges without evidence of encephalitis, even when the bacteria emerge from a parenchymal blood vessel. Erythrocytes were present within the meningeal space but no clear vasculitis could be detected. Histology of the brain stem indicates meningitis, edema and hemorrhages that might explain death from suffocation due to direct damage to the respiratory center. All of these processes are toxin-independent, since they were observed following infection with either the wild

  20. Anthrax Cases Associated with Animal-Hair Shaving Brushes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Szablewski, Christine M; Hendricks, Kate; Bower, William A; Shadomy, Sean V; Hupert, Nathaniel

    2017-05-01

    During the First World War, anthrax cases in the United States and England increased greatly and seemed to be associated with use of new shaving brushes. Further investigation revealed that the source material and origin of shaving brushes had changed during the war. Cheap brushes of imported horsehair were being made to look like the preferred badger-hair brushes. Unfortunately, some of these brushes were not effectively disinfected and brought with them a nasty stowaway: Bacillus anthracis. A review of outbreak summaries, surveillance data, and case reports indicated that these cases originated from the use of ineffectively disinfected animal-hair shaving brushes. This historical information is relevant to current public health practice because renewed interest in vintage and animal-hair shaving brushes has been seen in popular culture. This information should help healthcare providers and public health officials answer questions on this topic.

  1. Identification and validation of a linear protective neutralizing epitope in the β-pore domain of alpha toxin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oscherwitz, Jon; Cease, Kemp B

    2015-01-01

    The plethora of virulence factors associated with Staphylococcus aureus make this bacterium an attractive candidate for a molecularly-designed epitope-focused vaccine. This approach, which necessitates the identification of neutralizing epitopes for incorporation into a vaccine construct, is being evaluated for pathogens where conventional approaches have failed to elicit protective humoral responses, like HIV-1 and malaria, but may also hold promise for pathogens like S. aureus, where the elicitation of humoral immunity against multiple virulence factors may be required for development of an effective vaccine. Among the virulence factors employed by S. aureus, animal model and epidemiological data suggest that alpha toxin, a multimeric β-pore forming toxin like protective antigen from Bacillus anthracis, is particularly critical, yet no candidate neutralizing epitopes have been delineated in alpha toxin to date. We have previously shown that a linear determinant in the 2β2-2β3 loop of the pore forming domain of B. anthracis protective antigen is a linear neutralizing epitope. Antibody against this site is highly potent for neutralizing anthrax lethal toxin in vitro and for protection of rabbits in vivo from virulent B. anthracis. We hypothesized that sequences in the β-pore of S. aureus alpha toxin that share structural and functional homology to β-pore sequences in protective antigen would contain a similarly critical neutralizing epitope. Using an in vivo mapping strategy employing peptide immunogens, an optimized in vitro toxin neutralization assay, and an in vivo dermonecrosis model, we have now confirmed the presence of this epitope in alpha toxin, termed the pore neutralizing determinant. Antibody specific for this determinant neutralizes alpha toxin in vitro, and is highly effective for mitigating dermonecrosis and bacterial growth in a mouse model of S. aureus USA300 skin infection. The delineation of this linear neutralizing determinant in alpha

  2. Identification and validation of a linear protective neutralizing epitope in the β-pore domain of alpha toxin.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jon Oscherwitz

    Full Text Available The plethora of virulence factors associated with Staphylococcus aureus make this bacterium an attractive candidate for a molecularly-designed epitope-focused vaccine. This approach, which necessitates the identification of neutralizing epitopes for incorporation into a vaccine construct, is being evaluated for pathogens where conventional approaches have failed to elicit protective humoral responses, like HIV-1 and malaria, but may also hold promise for pathogens like S. aureus, where the elicitation of humoral immunity against multiple virulence factors may be required for development of an effective vaccine. Among the virulence factors employed by S. aureus, animal model and epidemiological data suggest that alpha toxin, a multimeric β-pore forming toxin like protective antigen from Bacillus anthracis, is particularly critical, yet no candidate neutralizing epitopes have been delineated in alpha toxin to date. We have previously shown that a linear determinant in the 2β2-2β3 loop of the pore forming domain of B. anthracis protective antigen is a linear neutralizing epitope. Antibody against this site is highly potent for neutralizing anthrax lethal toxin in vitro and for protection of rabbits in vivo from virulent B. anthracis. We hypothesized that sequences in the β-pore of S. aureus alpha toxin that share structural and functional homology to β-pore sequences in protective antigen would contain a similarly critical neutralizing epitope. Using an in vivo mapping strategy employing peptide immunogens, an optimized in vitro toxin neutralization assay, and an in vivo dermonecrosis model, we have now confirmed the presence of this epitope in alpha toxin, termed the pore neutralizing determinant. Antibody specific for this determinant neutralizes alpha toxin in vitro, and is highly effective for mitigating dermonecrosis and bacterial growth in a mouse model of S. aureus USA300 skin infection. The delineation of this linear neutralizing

  3. Temporal dynamics in microbial soil communities at anthrax carcass sites.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Valseth, Karoline; Nesbø, Camilla L; Easterday, W Ryan; Turner, Wendy C; Olsen, Jaran S; Stenseth, Nils Chr; Haverkamp, Thomas H A

    2017-09-26

    Anthrax is a globally distributed disease affecting primarily herbivorous mammals. It is caused by the soil-dwelling and spore-forming bacterium Bacillus anthracis. The dormant B. anthracis spores become vegetative after ingestion by grazing mammals. After killing the host, B. anthracis cells return to the soil where they sporulate, completing the lifecycle of the bacterium. Here we present the first study describing temporal microbial soil community changes in Etosha National Park, Namibia, after decomposition of two plains zebra (Equus quagga) anthrax carcasses. To circumvent state-associated-challenges (i.e. vegetative cells/spores) we monitored B. anthracis throughout the period using cultivation, qPCR and shotgun metagenomic sequencing. The combined results suggest that abundance estimation of spore-forming bacteria in their natural habitat by DNA-based approaches alone is insufficient due to poor recovery of DNA from spores. However, our combined approached allowed us to follow B. anthracis population dynamics (vegetative cells and spores) in the soil, along with closely related organisms from the B. cereus group, despite their high sequence similarity. Vegetative B. anthracis abundance peaked early in the time-series and then dropped when cells either sporulated or died. The time-series revealed that after carcass deposition, the typical semi-arid soil community (e.g. Frankiales and Rhizobiales species) becomes temporarily dominated by the orders Bacillales and Pseudomonadales, known to contain plant growth-promoting species. Our work indicates that complementing DNA based approaches with cultivation may give a more complete picture of the ecology of spore forming pathogens. Furthermore, the results suggests that the increased vegetation biomass production found at carcass sites is due to both added nutrients and the proliferation of microbial taxa that can be beneficial for plant growth. Thus, future B. anthracis transmission events at carcass sites may be

  4. Mechanism of Shiga Toxin Clustering on Membranes

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pezeshkian, Weria; Gao, Haifei; Arumugam, Senthil

    2017-01-01

    between them. The precise mechanism by which this clustering occurs remains poorly defined. Here, we used vesicle and cell systems and computer simulations to show that line tension due to curvature, height, or compositional mismatch, and lipid or solvent depletion cannot drive the clustering of Shiga...... toxin molecules. By contrast, in coarse-grained computer simulations, a correlation was found between clustering and toxin nanoparticle-driven suppression of membrane fluctuations, and experimentally we observed that clustering required the toxin molecules to be tightly bound to the membrane surface...... molecules (several nanometers), and persist even beyond. This force is predicted to operate between manufactured nanoparticles providing they are sufficiently rigid and tightly bound to the plasma membrane, thereby suggesting a route for the targeting of nanoparticles to cells for biomedical applications....

  5. Crystal structure of Clostridium difficile toxin A

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Chumbler, Nicole M.; Rutherford, Stacey A.; Zhang, Zhifen; Farrow, Melissa A.; Lisher, John P.; Farquhar, Erik; Giedroc, David P.; Spiller, Benjamin W.; Melnyk, Roman A.; Lacy, D. Borden

    2016-01-11

    Clostridium difficile infection is the leading cause of hospital-acquired diarrhoea and pseudomembranous colitis. Disease is mediated by the actions of two toxins, TcdA and TcdB, which cause the diarrhoea, as well as inflammation and necrosis within the colon. The toxins are large (308 and 270 kDa, respectively), homologous (47% amino acid identity) glucosyltransferases that target small GTPases within the host. The multidomain toxins enter cells by receptor-mediated endocytosis and, upon exposure to the low pH of the endosome, insert into and deliver two enzymatic domains across the membrane. Eukaryotic inositol-hexakisphosphate (InsP6) binds an autoprocessing domain to activate a proteolysis event that releases the N-terminal glucosyltransferase domain into the cytosol. Here, we report the crystal structure of a 1,832-amino-acid fragment of TcdA (TcdA1832), which reveals a requirement for zinc in the mechanism of toxin autoprocessing and an extended delivery domain that serves as a scaffold for the hydrophobic α-helices involved in pH-dependent pore formation. A surface loop of the delivery domain whose sequence is strictly conserved among all large clostridial toxins is shown to be functionally important, and is highlighted for future efforts in the development of vaccines and novel therapeutics.

  6. Array biosensor for detection of toxins

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ligler, Frances S.; Taitt, Chris Rowe; Shriver-Lake, Lisa C.; Sapsford, Kim E.; Shubin, Yura; Golden, Joel P.

    2003-01-01

    The array biosensor is capable of detecting multiple targets rapidly and simultaneously on the surface of a single waveguide. Sandwich and competitive fluoroimmunoassays have been developed to detect high and low molecular weight toxins, respectively, in complex samples. Recognition molecules (usually antibodies) were first immobilized in specific locations on the waveguide and the resultant patterned array was used to interrogate up to 12 different samples for the presence of multiple different analytes. Upon binding of a fluorescent analyte or fluorescent immunocomplex, the pattern of fluorescent spots was detected using a CCD camera. Automated image analysis was used to determine a mean fluorescence value for each assay spot and to subtract the local background signal. The location of the spot and its mean fluorescence value were used to determine the toxin identity and concentration. Toxins were measured in clinical fluids, environmental samples and foods, with minimal sample preparation. Results are shown for rapid analyses of staphylococcal enterotoxin B, ricin, cholera toxin, botulinum toxoids, trinitrotoluene, and the mycotoxin fumonisin. Toxins were detected at levels as low as 0.5 ng mL(-1).

  7. Higher cytotoxicity of divalent antibody-toxins than monovalent antibody-toxins

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Won, JaeSeon; Nam, PilWon; Lee, YongChan; Choe, MuHyeon

    2009-01-01

    Recombinant antibody-toxins are constructed via the fusion of a 'carcinoma-specific' antibody fragment to a toxin. Due to the high affinity and high selectivity of the antibody fragments, antibody-toxins can bind to surface antigens on cancer cells and kill them without harming normal cells [L.H. Pai, J.K. Batra, D.J. FitzGerald, M.C. Willingham, I. Pastan, Anti-tumor activities of immunotoxins made of monoclonal antibody B3 and various forms of Pseudomonas exotoxin, Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA 88 (1991) 3358-3362]. In this study, we constructed the antibody-toxin, Fab-SWn-PE38, with SWn (n = 3, 6, 9) sequences containing n-time repeated (G 4 S) between the Fab fragment and PE38 (38 kDa truncated form of Pseudomonas exotoxin A). The SWn sequence also harbored one cysteine residue that could form a disulfide bridge between two Fab-SWn-PE38 monomers. We assessed the cytotoxicity of the monovalent (Fab-SWn-PE38), and divalent ([Fab-SWn-PE38] 2 ) antibody-toxins. The cytotoxicity of the dimer against the CRL1739 cell line was approximately 18.8-fold higher than that of the monomer on the ng/ml scale, which was approximately 37.6-fold higher on the pM scale. These results strongly indicate that divalency provides higher cytotoxicity for an antibody-toxin.

  8. Translational errors in expression of Shiga toxin from pathogenic Escherichia coli as measured by MALDI-TOF-TOF and Orbitrap mass spectrometry

    Science.gov (United States)

    Introduction: Shiga toxin (Stx) is an AB5 toxin expressed by Shiga toxin-producing E. coli (STEC) and Shigella dysenteriae. The Stx holotoxin attaches to surface receptors of eukaryotic cells. After cellular envelopment, the toxin disrupts ribosomal protein synthesis causing cell death. Variations i...

  9. The evaluation of clinical and laboratory findings of 63 inpatient with cutaneous anthrax: Characteristics of cutaneous anthrax in Turkey

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hatice Uce Özkol

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available Background and Design: Despite a very uncommon disease in developed countries, cutaneous anthrax (CA is currently endemic in our countries. In this study, we aimed to bring out characteristic of anthrax of Turkey by comparing our results and the other CA reports in Turkey. Materials and Methods: Sixty three inpatients with CA between October 2009 and December 2012 were investigated retrospectively. All patients were diagnosed CA by clinical finding and/or microbiological examination. The demographic characteristics patient, routine tests, wound culture and gram staining results were recorded. Results were recorded on statistical program of SPSS 13.0 and were written using percent (%. Results: There were 63 inpatients (41 female (65.1%, 22 male (34.9%, mean age 35.9 years range10-83. Forty nine patients (77.8% had a history of contact with animals or animal product. Thirty-eight (60.3% and twenty-one (33.3% patients were found in the summer and fall season, respectively. Gram staining and culture were performed in 51 patients. Gram-positive bacilli were detected in 17 patients (33.3% by gram smear. Bacillus anthracis bacilli were produced in 11 patients (21.5% in cultures test. The lesions were mostly seen on the left hand (30.2%. Penicillin was most frequently preferred in treatment of CA (87.3%. Conclusion: CA is still endemic in Eastern Anatolia and continues to increase in recent years. Women living in the villages in which income is obtained from buying and selling of animals constitute the most important risk group. Preventive actions such as training of the risky society, vaccination of animals, and obstructing of illegal animal entries across the border, will reduce the incidence of CA.

  10. Marine and freshwater toxins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hungerford, James M

    2006-01-01

    In a very busy and exciting year, 2005 included First Action approval of a much needed official method for paralytic shellfish toxins and multiple international toxin symposia highlighted by groundbreaking research. These are the first-year milestones and activities of the Marine and Freshwater Toxins Task Force and Analytical Community. Inaugurated in 2004 and described in detail in last year's General Referee Report (1) this international toxins group has grown to 150 members from many regions and countries. Perhaps most important they are now making important and global contributions to food safety and to providing alternatives to animal-based assays. Official Method 2005.06 was first approved in late 2004 by the Task Force and subsequently Official First Action in 2005 (2) by the Methods Committee on Natural Toxins and Food Allergens and the Official Methods Board. This nonproprietary method (3) is a precolumn oxidation, liquid chromatographic method that makes good use of fluorescence detection to provide high sensitivity detection of the saxitoxins. It has also proven to be rugged enough for regulatory use and the highest level of validation. As pointed out in the report of method principle investigator and Study Director James Lawrence, approval of 2005.06 now provides the first official alternative to the mouse bioassay after many decades of shellfish monitoring. This past year in April 2005 the group also held their first international conference, "Marine and Freshwater Toxins Analysis: Ist Joint Symposium and AOAC Task Force Meeting," in Baiona, Spain. The 4-day conference consisted of research and stakeholder presentations and symposium-integrated subgroup sessions on ciguatoxins, saxitoxin assays and liquid chromatography (LC) methods for saxitoxins and domoic acids, okadaiates and azaspiracids, and yessotoxins. Many of these subgroups were recently formed in 2005 and are working towards their goals of producing officially validated analytical methods

  11. Assessment of listing and categorisation of animal diseases within the framework of the Animal Health Law (Regulation (EU) No 2016/429): anthrax

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    EFSA Panel on Animal Health and Welfare; More, Simon J.; Bøtner, Anette

    2017-01-01

    Anthrax has been assessed according to the criteria of the Animal Health Law (AHL), in particular criteria of Article 7 on disease profile and impacts, Article 5 on the eligibility of anthrax to be listed, Article 9 for the categorisation of anthrax according to disease prevention and control rul...... species to be listed for anthrax according to Article 8(3) are several species of mammals, birds and reptiles, and susceptible herbivores and pigs as reservoir....

  12. Historical evolution of human anthrax from occupational disease to potentially global threat as bioweapon.

    Science.gov (United States)

    D'Amelio, Enrico; Gentile, Bernardina; Lista, Florigio; D'Amelio, Raffaele

    2015-12-01

    Anthrax is caused by Bacillus anthracis, which can naturally infect livestock, wildlife and occupationally exposed humans. However, for its resistance due to spore formation, ease of dissemination, persistence in the environment and high virulence, B. anthracis has been considered the most serious bioterrorism agent for a long time. During the last century anthrax evolved from limited natural disease to potentially global threat if used as bioweapon. Several factors may mitigate the consequences of an anthrax attack, including 1. the capability to promptly recognize and manage the illness and its public health consequences; 2. the limitation of secondary contamination risk through an appropriate decontamination; and 3. the evolution of genotyping methods (for microbes characterization at high resolution level) that can influence the course and/or focus of investigations, impacting the response of the government to an attack. A PubMed search has been done using the key words “bioterrorism anthrax”. Over one thousand papers have been screened and the most significant examined to present a comprehensive literature review in order to discuss the current knowledge and strategies in preparedness for a possible deliberate release of B. anthracis spores and to indicate the most current and complete documents in which to deepen. The comprehensive analysis of the two most relevant unnatural anthrax release events, Sverdlovsk in the former Soviet Union (1979) and the contaminated letters in the USA (2001), shows that inhalational anthrax may easily and cheaply be spread resulting in serious consequences. The damage caused by an anthrax attack can be limited if public health organization, first responders, researchers and investigators will be able to promptly manage anthrax cases and use new technologies for decontamination methods and in forensic microbiology.

  13. Toxins of filamentous fungi.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bhatnagar, Deepak; Yu, Jiujiang; Ehrlich, Kenneth C

    2002-01-01

    Mycotoxins are low-molecular-weight secondary metabolites of fungi. The most significant mycotoxins are contaminants of agricultural commodities, foods and feeds. Fungi that produce these toxins do so both prior to harvest and during storage. Although contamination of commodities by toxigenic fungi occurs frequently in areas with a hot and humid climate (i.e. conditions favorable for fungal growth), they can also be found in temperate conditions. Production of mycotoxins is dependent upon the type of producing fungus and environmental conditions such as the substrate, water activity (moisture and relative humidity), duration of exposure to stress conditions and microbial, insect or other animal interactions. Although outbreaks of mycotoxicoses in humans have been documented, several of these have not been well characterized, neither has a direct correlation between the mycotoxin and resulting toxic effect been well established in vivo. Even though the specific modes of action of most of the toxins are not well established, acute and chronic effects in prokaryotic and eukaryotic systems, including humans have been reported. The toxicity of the mycotoxins varies considerably with the toxin, the animal species exposed to it, and the extent of exposure, age and nutritional status. Most of the toxic effects of mycotoxins are limited to specific organs, but several mycotoxins affect many organs. Induction of cancer by some mycotoxins is a major concern as a chronic effect of these toxins. It is nearly impossible to eliminate mycotoxins from the foods and feed in spite of the regulatory efforts at the national and international levels to remove the contaminated commodities. This is because mycotoxins are highly stable compounds, the producing fungi are ubiquitous, and food contamination can occur both before and after harvest. Nevertheless, good farm management practices and adequate storage facilities minimize the toxin contamination problems. Current research is

  14. Anti-idiotypic antibodies that protect cells against the action of diphtheria toxin

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rolf, J.M.; Gaudin, H.M.; Tirrell, S.M.; MacDonald, A.B.; Eidels, L.

    1989-01-01

    An anti-idiotypic serum prepared against the combining site (idiotype) of specific anti-diphtheria toxoid antibodies was characterized with respect to its interaction with highly diphtheria toxin-sensitive Vero cells. Although the anti-idiotypic serum protected Vero cells against the cytotoxic action of diphtheria toxin, it did not prevent the binding of 125 I-labeled diphtheria toxin to the cells but did inhibit the internalization and degradation of 125 I-labeled toxin. This anti-idiotypic serum immunoprecipitated a cell-surface protein from radiolabeled Vero cells with an apparent Mr of approximately 15,000. These results are consistent with the hypothesis that the anti-idiotypic serum contains antibodies that carry an internal image of an internalization site on the toxin and that a cell-surface protein involved in toxin internalization possesses a complementary site recognized by both the toxin and the anti-idiotypic antibodies

  15. Anti-idiotypic antibodies that protect cells against the action of diphtheria toxin

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Rolf, J.M.; Gaudin, H.M.; Tirrell, S.M.; MacDonald, A.B.; Eidels, L.

    1989-03-01

    An anti-idiotypic serum prepared against the combining site (idiotype) of specific anti-diphtheria toxoid antibodies was characterized with respect to its interaction with highly diphtheria toxin-sensitive Vero cells. Although the anti-idiotypic serum protected Vero cells against the cytotoxic action of diphtheria toxin, it did not prevent the binding of /sup 125/I-labeled diphtheria toxin to the cells but did inhibit the internalization and degradation of /sup 125/I-labeled toxin. This anti-idiotypic serum immunoprecipitated a cell-surface protein from radiolabeled Vero cells with an apparent Mr of approximately 15,000. These results are consistent with the hypothesis that the anti-idiotypic serum contains antibodies that carry an internal image of an internalization site on the toxin and that a cell-surface protein involved in toxin internalization possesses a complementary site recognized by both the toxin and the anti-idiotypic antibodies.

  16. Diphtheria toxin-induced channels in Vero cells selective for monovalent cations

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sandvig, K.; Olsnes, S.

    1988-01-01

    Ion fluxes associated with translocation of diphtheria toxin across the surface membrane of Vero cells were studied. When cells with surface-bound toxin were exposed to low pH to induce toxin entry, the cells became permeable to Na+, K+, H+, choline+, and glucosamine+. There was no increased permeability to Cl-, SO4(-2), glucose, or sucrose, whereas the uptake of 45 Ca2+ was slightly increased. The influx of Ca2+, which appears to be different from that of monovalent cations, was reduced by several inhibitors of anion transport and by verapamil, Mn2+, Co2+, and Ca2+, but not by Mg2+. The toxin-induced fluxes of N+, K+, and protons were inhibited by Cd2+. Cd2+ also protected the cells against intoxication by diphtheria toxin, suggesting that the open cation-selective channel is required for toxin translocation. The involvement of the toxin receptor is discussed

  17. Clostridial Binary Toxins: Iota and C2 Family Portraits

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stiles, Bradley G.; Wigelsworth, Darran J.; Popoff, Michel R.; Barth, Holger

    2011-01-01

    There are many pathogenic Clostridium species with diverse virulence factors that include protein toxins. Some of these bacteria, such as C. botulinum, C. difficile, C. perfringens, and C. spiroforme, cause enteric problems in animals as well as humans. These often fatal diseases can partly be attributed to binary protein toxins that follow a classic AB paradigm. Within a targeted cell, all clostridial binary toxins destroy filamentous actin via mono-ADP-ribosylation of globular actin by the A component. However, much less is known about B component binding to cell-surface receptors. These toxins share sequence homology amongst themselves and with those produced by another Gram-positive, spore-forming bacterium also commonly associated with soil and disease: Bacillus anthracis. This review focuses upon the iota and C2 families of clostridial binary toxins and includes: (1) basics of the bacterial source; (2) toxin biochemistry; (3) sophisticated cellular uptake machinery; and (4) host–cell responses following toxin-mediated disruption of the cytoskeleton. In summary, these protein toxins aid diverse enteric species within the genus Clostridium. PMID:22919577

  18. Headache and botulinum toxin

    OpenAIRE

    Porta, M.; Camerlingo, M.

    2005-01-01

    The authors discuss clinical and international experience about botulinum toxins (BTX types A and B) in headache treatment. Data from literature suggest good results for the treatment of tensiontype headache, migraine and chronic tension–type headache. In the present paper mechanisms of action and injection sites will also be discussed.

  19. Botulinum Toxin for Rhinitis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ozcan, Cengiz; Ismi, Onur

    2016-08-01

    Rhinitis is a common clinical entity. Besides nasal obstruction, itching, and sneezing, one of the most important symptoms of rhinitis is nasal hypersecretion produced by nasal glands and exudate from the nasal vascular bed. Allergic rhinitis is an IgE-mediated inflammatory reaction of nasal mucosa after exposure to environmental allergens. Idiopathic rhinitis describes rhinitis symptoms that occur after non-allergic, noninfectious irritants. Specific allergen avoidance, topical nasal decongestants, nasal corticosteroids, immunotherapy, and sinonasal surgery are the main treatment options. Because the current treatment modalities are not enough for reducing rhinorrhea in some patients, novel treatment options are required to solve this problem. Botulinum toxin is an exotoxin generated by Clostridium botulinum. It disturbs the signal transmission at the neuromuscular and neuroglandular junction by inhibiting the acetylcholine release from the presynaptic nerve terminal. It has been widely used in neuromuscular, hypersecretory, and autonomic nerve system disorders. There have been a lot of published articles concerning the effect of this toxin on rhinitis symptoms. Based on the results of these reports, intranasal botulinum toxin A administration appears to be a safe and effective treatment method for decreasing rhinitis symptoms in rhinitis patients with a long-lasting effect. Botulinum toxin type A will be a good treatment option for the chronic rhinitis patients who are resistant to other treatment methods.

  20. Diffusion of Botulinum Toxins

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Matthew A. Brodsky

    2012-08-01

    Full Text Available Background: It is generally agreed that diffusion of botulinum toxin occurs, but the extent of the spread and its clinical importance are disputed. Many factors have been suggested to play a role but which have the most clinical relevance is a subject of much discussion.Methods: This review discusses the variables affecting diffusion, including protein composition and molecular size as well as injection factors (e.g., volume, dose, injection method. It also discusses data on diffusion from comparative studies in animal models and human clinical trials that illustrate differences between the available botulinum toxin products (onabotulinumtoxinA, abobotulinumtoxinA, incobotulinumtoxinA, and rimabotulinumtoxinB.Results: Neither molecular weight nor the presence of complexing proteins appears to affect diffusion; however, injection volume, concentration, and dose all play roles and are modifiable. Both animal and human studies show that botulinum toxin products are not interchangeable, and that some products are associated with greater diffusion and higher rates of diffusion-related adverse events than others.Discussion: Each of the botulinum toxins is a unique pharmacologic entity. A working knowledge of the different serotypes is essential to avoid unwanted diffusion-related adverse events. In addition, clinicians should be aware that the factors influencing diffusion may range from properties intrinsic to the drug to accurate muscle selection as well as dilution, volume, and dose injected.

  1. Topical Botulinum Toxin

    OpenAIRE

    Collins, Ashley; Nasir, Adnan

    2010-01-01

    Nanotechnology is a rapidly growing discipline that capitalizes on the unique properties of matter engineered on the nanoscale. Vehicles incorporating nanotechnology have led to great strides in drug delivery, allowing for increased active ingredient stability, bioavailability, and site-specific targeting. Botulinum toxin has historically been used for the correction of neurological and neuromuscular disorders, such as torticollis, blepharospasm, and strabismus. Recent dermatological indicati...

  2. Evaluation of cutaneous anthrax cases during an outbreak in the east region of Turkey.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kural Ünüvar, Esra; Akgün Karapınar, Deniz Bahar; Dizen Namdar, Nazlı

    2016-11-17

    Anthrax is a zoonotic infection caused by Bacillus anthracis. We aimed to retrospectively evaluate cutaneous anthrax cases that occurred during an outbreak in eastern Turkey (Hakkari-Yüksekova), where people mostly earn their living from animal husbandry. Forty-six cutaneous anthrax patients that were admitted to the hospital during a very short duration of 3 months (June-August 2011) were evaluated. Out of 46 patients, 27 (52%) were women and 19 (48%) were men. The mean age was 37 ± 13 years. The distribution of occupations was 1 butcher, 1 cook, 5 farmers, 27 housewives, 11 shepherds, and 1 teacher. Multiple lesions were seen in 7 patients (15%) and the rest of the patients had only 1 lesion. We observed significant clinical differences among the cases and noted which particular symptoms were associated with the various skin lesions. We treated our patients with intramuscular procaine penicillin or oral ciprofloxacin/doxycycline. Anthrax is an important health problem that can cause lethal outbreaks. Therefore, one should think about anthrax when faced with a patient with history of animal contact that has a painless ulcer with edema and/or vesicles, especially in endemic countries like Turkey.

  3. Glycan Encapsulated Gold Nanoparticles Selectively Inhibit Shiga Toxins 1 and 2

    OpenAIRE

    Kulkarni, Ashish A.; Fuller-Schaefer, Cynthia; Korman, Henry; Weiss, Alison A.; Iyer, Suri S.

    2010-01-01

    Shiga toxins (Stx) released by Escherichia coli O157:H7 and Shigella dysentriae, cause life-threatening conditions that include hemolytic-uremic syndrome (HUS), kidney failure and neurological complications. Cellular entry is mediated by the B subunit of the AB5 toxin, which recognizes cell surface glycolipids present in lipid raft like structures. We developed gold glyconanoparticles that present a multivalent display similar to the cell surface glycolipids to compete for these toxins. These...

  4. Anthrax does not forgive mistakes: the information assessment following the yamal peninsula outbreak in the summer of 2016

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    I. V. Shestakova

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available For the first time in a long time period the sources of actual information about anthrax in Russia and in the world are systematized. The essence of the problem, features of epidemiology and clinical manifestations of the current forms of anthrax disease are analyzed. The upgraded classification of anthrax is presented, the clinical manifestations of oro-oropharyngeal varieties of intestinal form and injectable form of anthrax are described, according to extensive literature data and international guidelines and recommendations. The recommendations for clinical management of patients and diagnosis of disease are given. The need for strict compliance to the vaccination requirements of anthrax among animals and persons from risk groups is proven.

  5. Autoproteolytic Activation of Bacterial Toxins

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Aimee Shen

    2010-05-01

    Full Text Available Protease domains within toxins typically act as the primary effector domain within target cells. By contrast, the primary function of the cysteine protease domain (CPD in Multifunctional Autoprocessing RTX-like (MARTX and Clostridium sp. glucosylating toxin families is to proteolytically cleave the toxin and release its cognate effector domains. The CPD becomes activated upon binding to the eukaryotic-specific small molecule, inositol hexakisphosphate (InsP6, which is found abundantly in the eukaryotic cytosol. This property allows the CPD to spatially and temporally regulate toxin activation, making it a prime candidate for developing anti-toxin therapeutics. In this review, we summarize recent findings related to defining the regulation of toxin function by the CPD and the development of inhibitors to prevent CPD-mediated activation of bacterial toxins.

  6. Modeling the environmental suitability of anthrax in Ghana and estimating populations at risk: Implications for vaccination and control.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kracalik, Ian T; Kenu, Ernest; Ayamdooh, Evans Nsoh; Allegye-Cudjoe, Emmanuel; Polkuu, Paul Nokuma; Frimpong, Joseph Asamoah; Nyarko, Kofi Mensah; Bower, William A; Traxler, Rita; Blackburn, Jason K

    2017-10-01

    Anthrax is hyper-endemic in West Africa. Despite the effectiveness of livestock vaccines in controlling anthrax, underreporting, logistics, and limited resources makes implementing vaccination campaigns difficult. To better understand the geographic limits of anthrax, elucidate environmental factors related to its occurrence, and identify human and livestock populations at risk, we developed predictive models of the environmental suitability of anthrax in Ghana. We obtained data on the location and date of livestock anthrax from veterinary and outbreak response records in Ghana during 2005-2016, as well as livestock vaccination registers and population estimates of characteristically high-risk groups. To predict the environmental suitability of anthrax, we used an ensemble of random forest (RF) models built using a combination of climatic and environmental factors. From 2005 through the first six months of 2016, there were 67 anthrax outbreaks (851 cases) in livestock; outbreaks showed a seasonal peak during February through April and primarily involved cattle. There was a median of 19,709 vaccine doses [range: 0-175 thousand] administered annually. Results from the RF model suggest a marked ecological divide separating the broad areas of environmental suitability in northern Ghana from the southern part of the country. Increasing alkaline soil pH was associated with a higher probability of anthrax occurrence. We estimated 2.2 (95% CI: 2.0, 2.5) million livestock and 805 (95% CI: 519, 890) thousand low income rural livestock keepers were located in anthrax risk areas. Based on our estimates, the current anthrax vaccination efforts in Ghana cover a fraction of the livestock potentially at risk, thus control efforts should be focused on improving vaccine coverage among high risk groups.

  7. Modeling the environmental suitability of anthrax in Ghana and estimating populations at risk: Implications for vaccination and control.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ian T Kracalik

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available Anthrax is hyper-endemic in West Africa. Despite the effectiveness of livestock vaccines in controlling anthrax, underreporting, logistics, and limited resources makes implementing vaccination campaigns difficult. To better understand the geographic limits of anthrax, elucidate environmental factors related to its occurrence, and identify human and livestock populations at risk, we developed predictive models of the environmental suitability of anthrax in Ghana. We obtained data on the location and date of livestock anthrax from veterinary and outbreak response records in Ghana during 2005-2016, as well as livestock vaccination registers and population estimates of characteristically high-risk groups. To predict the environmental suitability of anthrax, we used an ensemble of random forest (RF models built using a combination of climatic and environmental factors. From 2005 through the first six months of 2016, there were 67 anthrax outbreaks (851 cases in livestock; outbreaks showed a seasonal peak during February through April and primarily involved cattle. There was a median of 19,709 vaccine doses [range: 0-175 thousand] administered annually. Results from the RF model suggest a marked ecological divide separating the broad areas of environmental suitability in northern Ghana from the southern part of the country. Increasing alkaline soil pH was associated with a higher probability of anthrax occurrence. We estimated 2.2 (95% CI: 2.0, 2.5 million livestock and 805 (95% CI: 519, 890 thousand low income rural livestock keepers were located in anthrax risk areas. Based on our estimates, the current anthrax vaccination efforts in Ghana cover a fraction of the livestock potentially at risk, thus control efforts should be focused on improving vaccine coverage among high risk groups.

  8. Anthrax Sampling and Decontamination: Technology Trade-Offs

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Price, Phillip N.; Hamachi, Kristina; McWilliams, Jennifer; Sohn, Michael D.

    2008-09-12

    The goal of this project was to answer the following questions concerning response to a future anthrax release (or suspected release) in a building: 1. Based on past experience, what rules of thumb can be determined concerning: (a) the amount of sampling that may be needed to determine the extent of contamination within a given building; (b) what portions of a building should be sampled; (c) the cost per square foot to decontaminate a given type of building using a given method; (d) the time required to prepare for, and perform, decontamination; (e) the effectiveness of a given decontamination method in a given type of building? 2. Based on past experience, what resources will be spent on evaluating the extent of contamination, performing decontamination, and assessing the effectiveness of the decontamination in abuilding of a given type and size? 3. What are the trade-offs between cost, time, and effectiveness for the various sampling plans, sampling methods, and decontamination methods that have been used in the past?

  9. Naturally acquired anthrax antibodies in a cheetah (Acinonyx jubatus) in Botswana.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Good, Kyle M; Houser, Annmarie; Arntzen, Lorraine; Turnbull, Peter C B

    2008-07-01

    An outbreak of anthrax in the Jwana Game Reserve in Jwaneng, Botswana, was first observed when three cheetahs (Acinonyx jubatus) died of the disease in November 2004. In the aftermath of this event, banked serum samples collected from 23 wild-caught cheetahs were examined, by the inhibition enzyme-linked immunoassay (ELISA), for antibodies to the protective antigen (PA) of Bacillus anthracis. Of the 23 cheetahs, 16 regularly accessed the reserve. Antibodies to PA were detected in one cheetah collected in May 2004, indicating the disease was occurring well before it was first noticed. This appears to be the first demonstration of naturally acquired anthrax antibodies in cheetahs. The finding of one antibody-positive animal amongst at least 16 potentially exposed individuals is consistent with existing reports that it is uncommon for cheetahs to develop natural immunity to anthrax.

  10. Recombinant protective antigen 102 (rPA102): profile of a second-generation anthrax vaccine.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Keitel, Wendy A

    2006-08-01

    Recent terrorist attacks involving the use of Bacillus anthracis spores have stimulated interest in the development of new vaccines for anthrax prevention. Studies of the pathogenesis of anthrax and of the immune responses following infection and immunization underscore the pivotal role that antibodies to the protective antigen play in protection. The most promising vaccine candidates contain purified recombinant protective antigen. Clinical trials of one of these, recombinant protective antigen (rPA)102, are underway. Initial results suggest that rPA102 is well tolerated and immunogenic. Additional trials are necessary to identify optimal formulations and immunization regimens for pre- and postexposure prophylaxis. Future licensure of these and other candidate vaccines will depend on their safety and immunogenicity profiles in humans, and their ability to confer protection in animal models of inhalational anthrax.

  11. Patient and family physician preferences for care and communication in the eventuality of anthrax terrorism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kahan, Ernesto; Fogelman, Yacov; Kitai, Eliezer; Vinker, Shlomo

    2003-08-01

    The threat of bioterrorism consequent to the September 11, 2001 attack in the USA generated suggestions for improved medical response mainly through hospital preparedness. The aim of the present study was to investigate the impact of this period of tension on patients' first choice for care and for receiving relevant information, and on primary care doctors' feelings of responsibility in the eventuality of an anthrax attack. During October 11-31, 2001, 500 patients from 30 clinics throughout Israel were asked to complete a questionnaire on their awareness of the anthrax threat, measures taken to prepare for it, and preferred sources of care and information. Their 30 physicians, and an additional 20, completed a questionnaire on knowledge about anthrax and anthrax-related patient behaviours and clinic visits. The outstanding finding was the low rate (30%) of patients who chose the hospital emergency department as their first choice for care or information if they were worried about an anthrax attack or the media communicated that an attack was in progress. The other two-thirds preferred their family doctor or the health authorities. Most of the physicians (89%) felt it was their responsibility to treat anthrax-infected patients and that they should therefore be supplied with appropriate guidelines. This study suggests that in Israel, a country with a high degree of awareness of civil defence aspects, both patients and primary care doctors believe that family physicians should have a major role in the case of bioterrorist attacks. This must be seriously considered during formulation of relevant health services programmes.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rodolphe Pontier-Bres

    2015-10-01

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

  13. The Saccharomyces boulardii CNCM I-745 strain shows protective effects against the B. anthracis LT toxin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pontier-Bres, Rodolphe; Rampal, Patrick; Peyron, Jean-François; Munro, Patrick; Lemichez, Emmanuel; Czerucka, Dorota

    2015-10-30

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

  14. Toxins and drug discovery.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harvey, Alan L

    2014-12-15

    Components from venoms have stimulated many drug discovery projects, with some notable successes. These are briefly reviewed, from captopril to ziconotide. However, there have been many more disappointments on the road from toxin discovery to approval of a new medicine. Drug discovery and development is an inherently risky business, and the main causes of failure during development programmes are outlined in order to highlight steps that might be taken to increase the chances of success with toxin-based drug discovery. These include having a clear focus on unmet therapeutic needs, concentrating on targets that are well-validated in terms of their relevance to the disease in question, making use of phenotypic screening rather than molecular-based assays, and working with development partners with the resources required for the long and expensive development process. Copyright © 2014 The Author. Published by Elsevier Ltd.. All rights reserved.

  15. Botulinum toxin for treatment of the focal dystonia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nakamura, Yusaku

    2017-07-29

    Dystonia is defined as a movement disorder characterized by sustained or intermittent muscles contraction causing abnormal, often repetitive, movements, postures, or both. Dystonic movements are typically patterned and twisting, and may be tremulous. The precis diagnosis of dystonia is difficult for physicians because neurological brain imaging does not provide enough practical information. The diagnosis is depend on clinical experience of physicians. Botulinum toxin treatment is the accepted standard of care for patients with focal dystonia. Botulinum toxin treatment results in significant improvement of decreasing the symptom of dystonia. The success of treatment is dependent on muscle selection for treating involved muscles. Usually performance of botulinum toxin treatment is injected according to clinical experience of surface anatomy or clinical location method. However, the benefit of guidance of botulinum toxin treatment is improve outcome in dystonia. Injection techniques with ultra sound echogram or EMG guidance to identify dystonic muscles can be more benefit for patients.

  16. Defining Moments in MMWR History: CDC’s Response to Intentional Release of Anthrax - 2001

    Centers for Disease Control (CDC) Podcasts

    2017-10-12

    On October 4, 2001, shortly after the September 11 attacks in New York City and Washington, DC, the Palm Beach County Health Department, the Florida State Department of Health, and CDC reported a case of anthrax in a 63-year-old man from Florida. This case was first reported in MMWR and marked the beginning of a series of anthrax cases that resulted from intentional delivery of Bacillus anthracis spores sent through the mail. In this podcast, Dr. Sherif Zaki recalls CDC’s investigation and response to the anthrax attacks.  Created: 10/12/2017 by MMWR.   Date Released: 10/12/2017.

  17. Toxin studies using an integrated biophysical and structural biology approach.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Last, Julie A.; Schroeder, Anne E.; Slade, Andrea Lynn; Sasaki, Darryl Yoshio; Yip, Christopher M. (University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario, Canada); Schoeniger, Joseph S. (Sandia National Laboratories, Livermore, CA)

    2005-03-01

    Clostridial neurotoxins, such as botulinum and tetanus, are generally thought to invade neural cells through a process of high affinity binding mediated by gangliosides, internalization via endosome formation, and subsequent membrane penetration of the catalytic domain activated by a pH drop in the endosome. This surface recognition and internalization process is still not well understood with regard to what specific membrane features the toxins target, the intermolecular interactions between bound toxins, and the molecular conformational changes that occur as a result of pH lowering. In an effort to elucidate the mechanism of tetanus toxin binding and permeation through the membrane a simple yet representative model was developed that consisted of the ganglioside G{sub tlb} incorporated in a bilayer of cholesterol and DPPC (dipalmitoylphosphatidyl choline). The bilayers were stable over time yet sensitive towards the binding and activity of whole toxin. A liposome leakage study at constant pH as well as with a pH gradient, to mimic the processes of the endosome, was used to elucidate the effect of pH on the toxin's membrane binding and permeation capability. Topographic imaging of the membrane surface, via in situ tapping mode AFM, provided nanoscale characterization of the toxin's binding location and pore formation activity.

  18. The anthrax vaccine and research: reactions from postal workers and public health professionals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Quinn, Sandra Crouse; Thomas, Tammy; Kumar, Supriya

    2008-12-01

    During the 2001 anthrax attacks, public health agencies faced operational and communication decisions about the use of antibiotic prophylaxis and the anthrax vaccine with affected groups, including postal workers. This communication occurred within an evolving situation with incomplete and uncertain data. Guidelines for prophylactic antibiotics changed several times, contributing to confusion and mistrust. At the end of 60 days of taking antibiotics, people were offered an additional 40 days' supply of antibiotics, with or without the anthrax vaccine, the former constituting an investigational new drug protocol. Using data from interviews and focus groups with 65 postal workers in 3 sites and structured interviews with 16 public health professionals, this article examines the challenges for public health professionals who were responsible for communication with postal workers about the vaccine. Multiple factors affected the response, including a lack of trust, risk perception, disagreement about the recommendation, and the controversy over the military's use of the vaccine. Some postal workers reacted with suspicion to the vaccine offer, believing that they were the subjects of research, and some African American workers specifically drew an analogy to the Tuskegee syphilis study. The consent forms required for the protocol heightened mistrust. Postal workers also had complex and ambivalent responses to additional research on their health. The anthrax attacks present us with an opportunity to understand the challenges of communication in the context of uncertain science and suggest key strategies that may improve communications about vaccines and other drugs authorized for experimental use in future public health emergencies.

  19. Evaluation of clinical and serological findings for diagnosis of cutaneous anthrax infection after an outbreak.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gulseren, Duygu; Süzük-Yıldız, Serap; Çelebi, Bekir; Kılıç, Selçuk

    2017-09-01

    Anthrax, caused by the bacterium Bacillus anthracis, is one of the oldest documented infectious diseases in both livestock and humans. We aimed to evaluate clinical findings and risk factors of patients with cutaneous anthrax infection and report anti-lethal factor (LF) IgG and anti-protective antigen (PA) IgG titers in the serologic diagnosis of disease. In this study, serum samples of 18 cutaneous anthrax patients were collected and anti-LF IgG and anti-PA IgG titers were measured by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). Twelve (67%) males and 6 (33%) females, with a mean age of 36.06 ± 16.58 years were included in the study. Risk factors identified in the patient population studied were slaughtering (28%), flaying (56%), chopping meat (67%), burying diseased animal corpses (17%) and milking (6%) livestock. Black eschar formation (94%), pruritus (78%) and painful lymphadenopathy (61%) were first three common clinical signs and symptoms, respectively. Fourteen (78%) patients produced a positive IgG response against PA, 11 (61%) patients produced against LF. Three (17%) patients had no response to either antigen. A detailed history of contact with sick animals or animal products along with clinical findings should be taken at the first step for the diagnosis of cutaneous anthrax infection. Serologic detection of anti-LF IgG and anti-PA IgG with ELISA may be useful auxillary method for establishing the diagnosis.

  20. Analysis of anthrax and plague biowarfare vaccine interactions with human monocyte-derived dendritic cells

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Skowera, Anna; de Jong, Esther C.; Schuitemaker, Joost H. N.; Allen, Jennifer S.; Wessely, Simon C.; Griffiths, Gareth; Kapsenberg, Martien; Peakman, Mark

    2005-01-01

    The anti-biowarfare anthrax and plague vaccines require repeated dosing to achieve adequate protection. To test the hypothesis that this limited immunogenicity results from the nature of vaccine interactions with the host innate immune system, we investigated molecular and cellular interactions

  1. Anthrax in America: A Chronology and Analysis of the Fall 2001 Attacks

    Science.gov (United States)

    2002-11-01

    Glenville, CT, 55 miles west of Oxford. • Officials confirm that the anthrax spores in a letter received by Santiago, Chile pediatrician Antonio Barfi were...process of opening the Leahy letter after two weeks of planning and rehearsals. In charge is John Ezzell , a man described by the Weekend Australian as

  2. The Biology of the Cytolethal Distending Toxins

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Teresa Frisan

    2011-03-01

    Full Text Available The cytolethal distending toxins (CDTs, produced by a variety of Gram-negative pathogenic bacteria, are the first bacterial genotoxins described, since they cause DNA damage in the target cells. CDT is an A-B2 toxin, where the CdtA and CdtC subunits are required to mediate the binding on the surface of the target cells, allowing internalization of the active CdtB subunit, which is functionally homologous to the mammalian deoxyribonuclease I. The nature of the surface receptor is still poorly characterized, however binding of CDT requires intact lipid rafts, and its internalization occurs via dynamin-dependent endocytosis. The toxin is retrograde transported through the Golgi complex and the endoplasmic reticulum, and subsequently translocated into the nuclear compartment, where it exerts the toxic activity. Cellular intoxication induces DNA damage and activation of the DNA damage responses, which results in arrest of the target cells in the G1 and/or G2 phases of the cell cycle and activation of DNA repair mechanisms. Cells that fail to repair the damage will senesce or undergo apoptosis. This review will focus on the well-characterized aspects of the CDT biology and discuss the questions that still remain unanswered.

  3. Efficacy of a Blend of Sulfuric Acid and Sodium Sulfate against Shiga Toxin-Producing Escherichia coli, Salmonella, and Nonpathogenic Escherichia coli Biotype I on Inoculated Prerigor Beef Surface Tissue.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scott-Bullard, Britteny R; Geornaras, Ifigenia; Delmore, Robert J; Woerner, Dale R; Reagan, James O; Morgan, J Bred; Belk, Keith E

    2017-12-01

    A study was conducted to investigate the efficacy of a sulfuric acid-sodium sulfate blend (SSS) against Escherichia coli O157:H7, non-O157 Shiga toxin-producing E. coli (STEC), Salmonella, and nonpathogenic E. coli biotype I on prerigor beef surface tissue. The suitability of using the nonpathogenic E. coli as a surrogate for in-plant validation studies was also determined by comparing the data obtained for the nonpathogenic inoculum with those for the pathogenic inocula. Prerigor beef tissue samples (10 by 10 cm) were inoculated (ca. 6 log CFU/cm 2 ) on the adipose side in a laboratory-scale spray cabinet with multistrain mixtures of E. coli O157:H7 (5 strains), non-O157 STEC (12 strains), Salmonella (6 strains), or E. coli biotype I (5 strains). Treatment parameters evaluated were two SSS pH values (1.5 and 1.0) and two spray application pressures (13 and 22 lb/in 2 ). Untreated inoculated beef tissue samples served as controls for initial bacterial populations. Overall, the SSS treatments lowered inoculated (6.1 to 6.4 log CFU/cm 2 ) bacterial populations by 0.6 to 1.5 log CFU/cm 2 (P SSS was applied to samples inoculated with any of the tested E. coli inocula; however, solution pH did have a significant effect (P SSS was applied to samples inoculated with Salmonella. Results indicated that the response of the nonpathogenic E. coli inoculum to the SSS treatments was similar (P ≥ 0.05) to that of the pathogenic inocula tested, making the E. coli biotype I strains viable surrogate organisms for in-plant validation of SSS efficacy on beef. The application of SSS at the tested parameters to prerigor beef surface tissue may be an effective intervention for controlling pathogens in a commercial beef harvest process.

  4. Transcriptome dysregulation by anthrax lethal toxin plays a key role in induction of human endothelial cell cytotoxicity

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Rolando, M

    2010-07-01

    Full Text Available . They show that knock-down of cortactin and rhophilin-2 under conditions of calponin-1 expression defines the minimal set of genes regulated by LT for actin cable formation. Together their data establish that the modulation of the cell transcriptome by LT...

  5. AN ENVIRONMENTAL TECHNOLOGY VERIFICATION (ETV) TESTING OF THREE IMMUNOASSAY TEST KITS FOR ANTHRAX, BOTULINUM TOXIN AND RICIN

    Science.gov (United States)

    Immunoassay test kits are based on immunoassay methods, where specific antibodies are used to detect and measure the contaminants of interest. Immunoassay test kits rely on the reaction of a contaminant or antigen with a selective antibody to give a product that can be measures....

  6. The toxins of Cyanobacteria.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Patocka, J

    2001-01-01

    Cyanobacteria, formerly called "blue-green algae", are simple, primitive photosynthetic microorganism wide occurrence in fresh, brackish and salt waters. Forty different genera of Cyanobacteria are known and many of them are producers of potent toxins responsible for a wide array of human illnesses, aquatic mammal and bird morbidity and mortality, and extensive fish kills. These cyanotoxins act as neurotoxins or hepatotoxins and are structurally and functionally diverse, and many are derived from unique biosynthetic pathways. All known cyanotoxins and their chemical and toxicological characteristics are presented in this article.

  7. Botulinum toxin: bioweapon & magic drug.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dhaked, Ram Kumar; Singh, Manglesh Kumar; Singh, Padma; Gupta, Pallavi

    2010-11-01

    Botulinum neurotoxins, causative agents of botulism in humans, are produced by Clostridium botulinum, an anaerobic spore-former Gram positive bacillus. Botulinum neurotoxin poses a major bioweapon threat because of its extreme potency and lethality; its ease of production, transport, and misuse; and the need for prolonged intensive care among affected persons. A single gram of crystalline toxin, evenly dispersed and inhaled, can kill more than one million people. The basis of the phenomenal potency of botulinum toxin is enzymatic; the toxin is a zinc proteinase that cleaves neuronal vesicle associated proteins responsible for acetylcholine release into the neuromuscular junction. As a military or terrorist weapon, botulinum toxin could be disseminated via aerosol or by contamination of water or food supplies, causing widespread casualties. A fascinating aspect of botulinum toxin research in recent years has been development of the most potent toxin into a molecule of significant therapeutic utility . It is the first biological toxin which is licensed for treatment of human diseases. In the late 1980s, Canada approved use of the toxin to treat strabismus, in 2001 in the removal of facial wrinkles and in 2002, the FDA in the United States followed suit. The present review focuses on both warfare potential and medical uses of botulinum neurotoxin.

  8. Toxin-Based Therapeutic Approaches

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Itai Benhar

    2010-10-01

    Full Text Available Protein toxins confer a defense against predation/grazing or a superior pathogenic competence upon the producing organism. Such toxins have been perfected through evolution in poisonous animals/plants and pathogenic bacteria. Over the past five decades, a lot of effort has been invested in studying their mechanism of action, the way they contribute to pathogenicity and in the development of antidotes that neutralize their action. In parallel, many research groups turned to explore the pharmaceutical potential of such toxins when they are used to efficiently impair essential cellular processes and/or damage the integrity of their target cells. The following review summarizes major advances in the field of toxin based therapeutics and offers a comprehensive description of the mode of action of each applied toxin.

  9. Toxin-Based Therapeutic Approaches

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shapira, Assaf; Benhar, Itai

    2010-01-01

    Protein toxins confer a defense against predation/grazing or a superior pathogenic competence upon the producing organism. Such toxins have been perfected through evolution in poisonous animals/plants and pathogenic bacteria. Over the past five decades, a lot of effort has been invested in studying their mechanism of action, the way they contribute to pathogenicity and in the development of antidotes that neutralize their action. In parallel, many research groups turned to explore the pharmaceutical potential of such toxins when they are used to efficiently impair essential cellular processes and/or damage the integrity of their target cells. The following review summarizes major advances in the field of toxin based therapeutics and offers a comprehensive description of the mode of action of each applied toxin. PMID:22069564

  10. Use of an Electrostatic Spraying System or the Sprayed Lethality in Container Method To Deliver Antimicrobial Agents onto the Surface of Beef Subprimals To Control Shiga Toxin-Producing Escherichia coli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stella, J Max; Luchansky, John B; Miller, Kelsey; Shoyer, Bradley A; Shane, Laura E; McGeary, Lianna; Osoria, Manuela; Stahler, Laura J; Sevart, Nicholas J; Phebus, Randall K; Thippareddi, Harshavardhan; Porto-Fett, Anna C S

    2017-08-01

    The efficacy of an electrostatic spraying system (ESS) and/or the sprayed lethality in container (SLIC) method to deliver antimicrobial agents onto the surface of beef subprimals to reduce levels of Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli (STEC) was evaluated. Beef subprimals were surface inoculated (lean side; ca. 5.8 log CFU per subprimal) with 2 mL of an eight-strain cocktail comprising single strains of rifampin-resistant (100 μg/mL) STEC (O26:H11, O45:H2, O103:H2, O104:H4, O111:H - , O121:H19, O145:NM, and O157:H7). Next, inoculated subprimals were surface treated with lauric arginate (LAE; 1%), peroxyacetic acid (PAA; 0.025%), or cetylpyridinium chloride (CPC; 0.4%) by passing each subprimal, with the inoculated lean side facing upward, through an ESS cabinet or via SLIC. Subprimals were then vacuum packaged and stored at 4°C. One set of subprimals was sampled after an additional 2 h, 3 days, or 7 days of refrigerated storage, whereas another set was retreated via SLIC after 3 days of storage with a different one of the three antimicrobial agents (e.g., a subprimal treated with LAE on day 0 was then treated with PAA or CPE on day 3). Retreated subprimals were sampled after 2 h or 4 days of additional storage at 4°C. A single initial application of LAE, PAA, or CPC via ESS or SLIC resulted in STEC reductions of ca. 0.3 to 1.3 log CFU per subprimal after 7 days of storage. However, when subprimals were initially treated with LAE, PAA, or CPC via ESS or SLIC and then separately retreated with a different one of these antimicrobial agents via SLIC on day 3, additional STEC reductions of 0.4 to 1.0 log CFU per subprimal were observed after an additional 4 days of storage. Application of LAE, PAA, or CPC, either alone or in combination, via ESS or SLIC is effective for reducing low levels (ca. 0.3 to 1.6 log CFU) of STEC that may be naturally present on the surface of beef subprimals.

  11. Binding of ATP by pertussis toxin and isolated toxin subunits

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hausman, S.Z.; Manclark, C.R.; Burns, D.L.

    1990-01-01

    The binding of ATP to pertussis toxin and its components, the A subunit and B oligomer, was investigated. Whereas, radiolabeled ATP bound to the B oligomer and pertussis toxin, no binding to the A subunit was observed. The binding of [ 3 H]ATP to pertussis toxin and the B oligomer was inhibited by nucleotides. The relative effectiveness of the nucleotides was shown to be ATP > GTP > CTP > TTP for pertussis toxin and ATP > GTP > TTP > CTP for the B oligomer. Phosphate ions inhibited the binding of [ 3 H]ATP to pertussis toxin in a competitive manner; however, the presence of phosphate ions was essential for binding of ATP to the B oligomer. The toxin substrate, NAD, did not affect the binding of [ 3 H]ATP to pertussis toxin, although the glycoprotein fetuin significantly decreased binding. These results suggest that the binding site for ATP is located on the B oligomer and is distinct from the enzymatically active site but may be located near the eukaryotic receptor binding site

  12. Binding of ATP by pertussis toxin and isolated toxin subunits

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hausman, S.Z.; Manclark, C.R.; Burns, D.L. (Center for Biologics Evaluation and Research, Bethesda, MD (USA))

    1990-07-03

    The binding of ATP to pertussis toxin and its components, the A subunit and B oligomer, was investigated. Whereas, radiolabeled ATP bound to the B oligomer and pertussis toxin, no binding to the A subunit was observed. The binding of ({sup 3}H)ATP to pertussis toxin and the B oligomer was inhibited by nucleotides. The relative effectiveness of the nucleotides was shown to be ATP > GTP > CTP > TTP for pertussis toxin and ATP > GTP > TTP > CTP for the B oligomer. Phosphate ions inhibited the binding of ({sup 3}H)ATP to pertussis toxin in a competitive manner; however, the presence of phosphate ions was essential for binding of ATP to the B oligomer. The toxin substrate, NAD, did not affect the binding of ({sup 3}H)ATP to pertussis toxin, although the glycoprotein fetuin significantly decreased binding. These results suggest that the binding site for ATP is located on the B oligomer and is distinct from the enzymatically active site but may be located near the eukaryotic receptor binding site.

  13. Awareness and attitudes towards anthrax and meat consumption practices among affected communities in Zambia: A mixed methods approach.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Doreen Chilolo Sitali

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available In Zambia, human anthrax cases often occur following cases of animal anthrax. Human behaviour has been implicated in this transmission. The objective of the study was to explore human behavioural patterns that may contribute to outbreaks of anthrax among affected communities.A mixed methods study was conducted in four districts of Zambia from November 2015 to February 2016. A cross sectional survey involving 1,127 respondents, six focus group discussions and seven key informant interviews with professional staff were conducted. Descriptive statistics on socio-demographic characteristics, awareness of anthrax, attitudes towards cattle vaccination and risk factors for anthrax and vaccination practices were run using STATA 12 for analysis.Overall, 88% of respondents heard about anthrax, 85.1% were aware that anthrax is transmitted by eating infected meat and 64.2% knew that animals and humans can be infected with anthrax. However, qualitative data suggested that awareness of anthrax varied across communities. Qualitative findings also indicated that, in Western and Muchinga provinces, human anthrax was transmitted by eating infected beef and hippo (Hippopotamus amphibious meat, respectively. Although survey data indicated that 62.2% of respondents vaccinated their animals, qualitative interviews and annual vaccination reports indicated low vaccination rates, which were attributed to inadequate veterinary service provision and logistical challenges. While 82% of respondents indicated that they reported animal deaths to veterinary officers, only 13.5% of respondents buried infected carcasses. Majority (78.1% of respondents either ate, sold or shared meat from dead animals with other community members. Poverty, lack of access to meat protein and economic reasons were cited as drivers for consuming infected meat.Health education campaigns must be intensified to reduce the risk of human exposure. Veterinary extension services should be strengthened and

  14. Rapid generation of an anthrax immunotherapeutic from goats using a novel non-toxic muramyl dipeptide adjuvant

    OpenAIRE

    Kelly, Cassandra D; O'Loughlin, Chris; Gelder, Frank B; Peterson, Johnny W; Sower, Laurie E; Cirino, Nick M

    2007-01-01

    Background There is a clear need for vaccines and therapeutics for potential biological weapons of mass destruction and emerging diseases. Anthrax, caused by the bacterium Bacillus anthracis, has been used as both a biological warfare agent and bioterrorist weapon previously. Although antibiotic therapy is effective in the early stages of anthrax infection, it does not have any effect once exposed individuals become symptomatic due to B. anthracis exotoxin accumulation. The bipartite exotoxin...

  15. Changing patterns of human anthrax in Azerbaijan during the post-Soviet and preemptive livestock vaccination eras.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ian Kracalik

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available We assessed spatial and temporal changes in the occurrence of human anthrax in Azerbaijan during 1984 through 2010. Data on livestock outbreaks, vaccination efforts, and human anthrax incidence during Soviet governance, post-Soviet governance, preemptive livestock vaccination were analyzed. To evaluate changes in the spatio-temporal distribution of anthrax, we used a combination of spatial analysis, cluster detection, and weighted least squares segmented regression. Results indicated an annual percent change in incidence of (+11.95% from 1984 to 1995 followed by declining rate of -35.24% after the initiation of livestock vaccination in 1996. Our findings also revealed geographic variation in the spatial distribution of reporting; cases were primarily concentrated in the west early in the study period and shifted eastward as time progressed. Over twenty years after the dissolution of the Soviet Union, the distribution of human anthrax in Azerbaijan has undergone marked changes. Despite decreases in the incidence of human anthrax, continued control measures in livestock are needed to mitigate its occurrence. The shifting patterns of human anthrax highlight the need for an integrated "One Health" approach that takes into account the changing geographic distribution of the disease.

  16. CD44 Promotes intoxication by the clostridial iota-family toxins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wigelsworth, Darran J; Ruthel, Gordon; Schnell, Leonie; Herrlich, Peter; Blonder, Josip; Veenstra, Timothy D; Carman, Robert J; Wilkins, Tracy D; Van Nhieu, Guy Tran; Pauillac, Serge; Gibert, Maryse; Sauvonnet, Nathalie; Stiles, Bradley G; Popoff, Michel R; Barth, Holger

    2012-01-01

    Various pathogenic clostridia produce binary protein toxins associated with enteric diseases of humans and animals. Separate binding/translocation (B) components bind to a protein receptor on the cell surface, assemble with enzymatic (A) component(s), and mediate endocytosis of the toxin complex. Ultimately there is translocation of A component(s) from acidified endosomes into the cytosol, leading to destruction of the actin cytoskeleton. Our results revealed that CD44, a multifunctional surface protein of mammalian cells, facilitates intoxication by the iota family of clostridial binary toxins. Specific antibody against CD44 inhibited cytotoxicity of the prototypical Clostridium perfringens iota toxin. Versus CD44(+) melanoma cells, those lacking CD44 bound less toxin and were dose-dependently resistant to C. perfringens iota, as well as Clostridium difficile and Clostridium spiroforme iota-like, toxins. Purified CD44 specifically interacted in vitro with iota and iota-like, but not related Clostridium botulinum C2, toxins. Furthermore, CD44 knockout mice were resistant to iota toxin lethality. Collective data reveal an important role for CD44 during intoxication by a family of clostridial binary toxins.

  17. Nanoporous biomaterials for uremic toxin adsorption in artificial kidney systems: A review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cheah, Wee-Keat; Ishikawa, Kunio; Othman, Radzali; Yeoh, Fei-Yee

    2017-07-01

    Hemodialysis, one of the earliest artificial kidney systems, removes uremic toxins via diffusion through a semipermeable porous membrane into the dialysate fluid. Miniaturization of the present hemodialysis system into a portable and wearable device to maintain continuous removal of uremic toxins would require that the amount of dialysate used within a closed-system is greatly reduced. Diffused uremic toxins within a closed-system dialysate need to be removed to maintain the optimum concentration gradient for continuous uremic toxin removal by the dialyzer. In this dialysate regenerative system, adsorption of uremic toxins by nanoporous biomaterials is essential. Throughout the years of artificial kidney development, activated carbon has been identified as a potential adsorbent for uremic toxins. Adsorption of uremic toxins necessitates nanoporous biomaterials, especially activated carbon. Nanoporous biomaterials are also utilized in hemoperfusion for uremic toxin removal. Further miniaturization of artificial kidney system and improvements on uremic toxin adsorption capacity would require high performance nanoporous biomaterials which possess not only higher surface area, controlled pore size, but also designed architecture or structure and surface functional groups. This article reviews on various nanoporous biomaterials used in current artificial kidney systems and several emerging nanoporous biomaterials. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J Biomed Mater Res Part B: Appl Biomater, 105B: 1232-1240, 2017. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  18. Perfringolysin O: The Underrated Clostridium perfringens Toxin?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Verherstraeten, Stefanie; Goossens, Evy; Valgaeren, Bonnie; Pardon, Bart; Timbermont, Leen; Haesebrouck, Freddy; Ducatelle, Richard; Deprez, Piet; Wade, Kristin R; Tweten, Rodney; Van Immerseel, Filip

    2015-05-14

    The anaerobic bacterium Clostridium perfringens expresses multiple toxins that promote disease development in both humans and animals. One such toxin is perfringolysin O (PFO, classically referred to as θ toxin), a pore-forming cholesterol-dependent cytolysin (CDC). PFO is secreted as a water-soluble monomer that recognizes and binds membranes via cholesterol. Membrane-bound monomers undergo structural changes that culminate in the formation of an oligomerized prepore complex on the membrane surface. The prepore then undergoes conversion into the bilayer-spanning pore measuring approximately 250-300 Å in diameter. PFO is expressed in nearly all identified C. perfringens strains and harbors interesting traits that suggest a potential undefined role for PFO in disease development. Research has demonstrated a role for PFO in gas gangrene progression and bovine necrohemorrhagic enteritis, but there is limited data available to determine if PFO also functions in additional disease presentations caused by C. perfringens. This review summarizes the known structural and functional characteristics of PFO, while highlighting recent insights into the potential contributions of PFO to disease pathogenesis.

  19. Perfringolysin O: The Underrated Clostridium perfringens Toxin?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stefanie Verherstraeten

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available The anaerobic bacterium Clostridium perfringens expresses multiple toxins that promote disease development in both humans and animals. One such toxin is perfringolysin O (PFO, classically referred to as θ toxin, a pore-forming cholesterol-dependent cytolysin (CDC. PFO is secreted as a water-soluble monomer that recognizes and binds membranes via cholesterol. Membrane-bound monomers undergo structural changes that culminate in the formation of an oligomerized prepore complex on the membrane surface. The prepore then undergoes conversion into the bilayer-spanning pore measuring approximately 250–300 Å in diameter. PFO is expressed in nearly all identified C. perfringens strains and harbors interesting traits that suggest a potential undefined role for PFO in disease development. Research has demonstrated a role for PFO in gas gangrene progression and bovine necrohemorrhagic enteritis, but there is limited data available to determine if PFO also functions in additional disease presentations caused by C. perfringens. This review summarizes the known structural and functional characteristics of PFO, while highlighting recent insights into the potential contributions of PFO to disease pathogenesis.

  20. Food toxin detection with atomic force microscope

    Science.gov (United States)

    Externally introduced toxins or internal spoilage correlated pathogens and their metabolites are all potential sources of food toxins. To prevent and protect unsafe food, many food toxin detection techniques have been developed to detect various toxins for quality control. Although several routine m...

  1. Botulinum Toxin (Botox) for Facial Wrinkles

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... Stories Español Eye Health / Eye Health A-Z Botulinum Toxin (Botox) for Facial Wrinkles Sections Botulinum Toxin (Botox) ... Facial Wrinkles How Does Botulinum Toxin (Botox) Work? Botulinum Toxin (Botox) for Facial Wrinkles Leer en Español: La ...

  2. An Alternative Approach to Combination Vaccines: Intradermal Administration of Isolated Components for Control of Anthrax, Botulism, Plague and Staphylococcal Toxic Shock

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Morefield, Garry L; Tammariello, Ralph F; Purcell, Bret K; Worsham, Patricia L; Chapman, Jennifer; Smith, Leonard A; Alarcon, Jason B; Mikszta, John A; Ulrich, Robert G

    2008-01-01

    ... incompatible vaccine mixtures. Intradermally administered arrays of vaccines for protection from anthrax, botulism, plague, and staphylococcal toxic shock were biocompatible in vivo, retained potent antibody responses...

  3. Bio Warfare and Terrorism: Toxins and Other Mid-Spectrum Agents

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Madsen, James M

    2005-01-01

    ... counterparts are still by definition toxins. Related terms include phycotoxins (toxins from algae), mycotoxins (fungal toxins), phytotoxins (plant toxins), and venoms (toxins from animals, especially vertebrates...

  4. Frequent and seasonally variable sublethal anthrax infections are accompanied by short-lived immunity in an endemic system.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cizauskas, Carrie A; Bellan, Steven E; Turner, Wendy C; Vance, Russell E; Getz, Wayne M

    2014-09-01

    Few studies have examined host-pathogen interactions in wildlife from an immunological perspective, particularly in the context of seasonal and longitudinal dynamics. In addition, though most ecological immunology studies employ serological antibody assays, endpoint titre determination is usually based on subjective criteria and needs to be made more objective. Despite the fact that anthrax is an ancient and emerging zoonotic infectious disease found world-wide, its natural ecology is not well understood. In particular, little is known about the adaptive immune responses of wild herbivore hosts against Bacillus anthracis. Working in the natural anthrax system of Etosha National Park, Namibia, we collected 154 serum samples from plains zebra (Equus quagga), 21 from springbok (Antidorcas marsupialis) and 45 from African elephants (Loxodonta africana) over 2-3 years, resampling individuals when possible for seasonal and longitudinal comparisons. We used enzyme-linked immunosorbent assays to measure anti-anthrax antibody titres and developed three increasingly conservative models to determine endpoint titres with more rigourous, objective mensuration. Between 52 and 87% of zebra, 0-15% of springbok and 3-52% of elephants had measurable anti-anthrax antibody titres, depending on the model used. While the ability of elephants and springbok to mount anti-anthrax adaptive immune responses is still equivocal, our results indicate that zebra in ENP often survive sublethal anthrax infections, encounter most B. anthracis in the wet season and can partially booster their immunity to B. anthracis. Thus, rather than being solely a lethal disease, anthrax often occurs as a sublethal infection in some susceptible hosts. Though we found that adaptive immunity to anthrax wanes rapidly, subsequent and frequent sublethal B. anthracis infections cause maturation of anti-anthrax immunity. By triggering host immune responses, these common sublethal infections may act as

  5. Botulinum toxin in trigeminal neuralgia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Castillo-Álvarez, Federico; Hernando de la Bárcena, Ignacio; Marzo-Sola, María Eugenia

    2017-01-06

    Trigeminal neuralgia is one of the most disabling facial pain syndromes, with a significant impact on patients' quality of life. Pharmacotherapy is the first choice for treatment but cases of drug resistance often require new strategies, among which various interventional treatments have been used. In recent years a new therapeutic strategy consisting of botulinum toxin has emerged, with promising results. We reviewed clinical cases and case series, open-label studies and randomized clinical trials examining the use of botulinum toxin for drug-refractory trigeminal neuralgia published in the literature. The administration of botulinum toxin has proven to be a safe and effective therapeutic strategy in patients with drug-refractory idiopathic trigeminal neuralgia, but many questions remain unanswered as to the precise role of botulinum toxin in the treatment of this disease. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier España, S.L.U. All rights reserved.

  6. Clostridium botulinum C2 toxin--new insights into the cellular up-take of the actin-ADP-ribosylating toxin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aktories, Klaus; Barth, Holger

    2004-04-01

    Clostridium botulinum C2 toxin is a member of the family of binary actin-ADP-ribosylating toxins. It consists of the enzyme component C2I, and the separated binding/translocation component C2II. Proteolytically activated C2II forms heptamers and binds to a carbohydrate cell surface receptor. After attachment of C2I, the toxin complex is endocytosed to reach early endosomes. At low pH of endosomes, C2II-heptamers insert into the membrane, form pores and deliver C2I into the cytosol. Here, C2I ADP-ribosylates actin at Arg177 to block actin polymerization and to induce depolymerization of actin filaments. The mini-review describes main properties of C2 toxin and discusses new findings on the involvement of chaperones in the up-take process of the toxin.

  7. [PERSPECTIVES OF DEVELOPMENT OF LIVE RECOMBINANT ANTHRAX VACCINES BASED ON OPPORTUNISTIC AND APATHOGENIC MICROORGANISMS].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Popova, P Yu; Mikshis, N I

    2016-01-01

    Live genetic engineering anthrax vaccines on the platform of avirulent and probiotic micro-organisms are a safe and adequate alternative to preparations based on attenuated Bacillus anthracis strains. Mucosal application results in a direct contact of the vaccine preparations with mucous membranes in those organs arid tissues of the macro-organisms, that are exposed to the pathogen in the first place, resulting in a development of local and systemic immune response. Live recombinant anthrax vaccines could be used both separately as well as in a prime-boost immunization scheme. The review focuses on immunogenic and protective properties of experimental live genetic engineering prearations, created based on members of geni of Salmonella, Lactobacillus and adenoviruses.

  8. Toxin-Based Therapeutic Approaches

    OpenAIRE

    Itai Benhar; Assaf Shapira

    2010-01-01

    Protein toxins confer a defense against predation/grazing or a superior pathogenic competence upon the producing organism. Such toxins have been perfected through evolution in poisonous animals/plants and pathogenic bacteria. Over the past five decades, a lot of effort has been invested in studying their mechanism of action, the way they contribute to pathogenicity and in the development of antidotes that neutralize their action. In parallel, many research groups turned to explore the pharmac...

  9. Catastrophic Incident Recovery: Long-Term Recovery from an Anthrax Event Symposium

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lesperance, Ann M.

    2008-06-30

    On March 19, 2008, policy makers, emergency managers, and medical and Public Health officials convened in Seattle, Washington, for a workshop on Catastrophic Incident Recovery: Long-Term Recovery from an Anthrax Event. The day-long symposium was aimed at generating a dialogue about restoration and recovery through a discussion of the associated challenges that impact entire communities, including people, infrastructure, and critical systems.

  10. Anthrax outbreak in a Swedish beef cattle herd - 1st case in 27 years: Case report

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Granberg Malin

    2010-02-01

    Full Text Available Abstract After 27 years with no detected cases, an outbreak of anthrax occurred in a beef cattle herd in the south of Sweden. The outbreak was unusual as it occurred in winter, in animals not exposed to meat-and-bone meal, in a non-endemic country. The affected herd consisted of 90 animals, including calves and young stock. The animals were kept in a barn on deep straw bedding and fed only roughage. Seven animals died during 10 days, with no typical previous clinical signs except fever. The carcasses were reportedly normal in appearance, particularly as regards rigor mortis, bleeding and coagulation of the blood. Subsequently, three more animals died and anthrax was suspected at necropsy and confirmed by culture and PCR on blood samples. The isolated strain was susceptible to tetracycline, ciprofloxacin and ampicillin. Subtyping by MLVA showed the strain to cluster with isolates in the A lineage of Bacillus anthracis. Environmental samples from the holding were all negative except for two soil samples taken from a spot where infected carcasses had been kept until they were picked up for transport. The most likely source of the infection was concluded to be contaminated roughage, although this could not be substantiated by laboratory analysis. The suspected feed was mixed with soil and dust and originated from fields where flooding occurred the previous year, followed by a dry summer with a very low water level in the river allowing for the harvesting on soil usually not exposed. In the early 1900s, animal carcasses are said to have been dumped in this river during anthrax outbreaks and it is most likely that some anthrax spores could remain in the area. The case indicates that untypical cases in non-endemic areas may be missed to a larger extent than previously thought. Field tests allowing a preliminary risk assessment of animal carcasses would be helpful for increased sensitivity of detection and prevention of further exposure to the causative

  11. Large-Scale Investigation of Leishmania Interaction Networks with Host Extracellular Matrix by Surface Plasmon Resonance Imaging

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fatoux-Ardore, Marie; Peysselon, Franck; Weiss, Anthony; Bastien, Patrick; Pratlong, Francine

    2014-01-01

    We have set up an assay to study the interactions of live pathogens with their hosts by using protein and glycosaminoglycan arrays probed by surface plasmon resonance imaging. We have used this assay to characterize the interactions of Leishmania promastigotes with ∼70 mammalian host biomolecules (extracellular proteins, glycosaminoglycans, growth factors, cell surface receptors). We have identified, in total, 27 new partners (23 proteins, 4 glycosaminoglycans) of procyclic promastigotes of six Leishmania species and 18 partners (15 proteins, 3 glycosaminoglycans) of three species of stationary-phase promastigotes for all the strains tested. The diversity of the interaction repertoires of Leishmania parasites reflects their dynamic and complex interplay with their mammalian hosts, which depends mostly on the species and strains of Leishmania. Stationary-phase Leishmania parasites target extracellular matrix proteins and glycosaminoglycans, which are highly connected in the extracellular interaction network. Heparin and heparan sulfate bind to most Leishmania strains tested, and 6-O-sulfate groups play a crucial role in these interactions. Numerous Leishmania strains bind to tropoelastin, and some strains are even able to degrade it. Several strains interact with collagen VI, which is expressed by macrophages. Most Leishmania promastigotes interact with several regulators of angiogenesis, including antiangiogenic factors (endostatin, anastellin) and proangiogenic factors (ECM-1, VEGF, and TEM8 [also known as anthrax toxin receptor 1]), which are regulated by hypoxia. Since hypoxia modulates the infection of macrophages by the parasites, these interactions might influence the infection of host cells by Leishmania. PMID:24478075

  12. False alarms, real challenges--one university's communication response to the 2001 anthrax crisis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clarke, Christopher E; Chess, Caron

    2006-01-01

    Considerable research exists on how government agencies at the federal, state, and local levels communicated during the fall 2001 anthrax attacks. However, there is little research on how other institutions handled this crisis, in terms of their response to potential anthrax contamination (aka "white powder scares") and their approach to disseminating important health and safety information. In this article, we investigate a major university's communication response to the anthrax crisis. First, we describe its communication experiences relating to a large white powder scare that occurred in October 2001. Second, we describe the university's broader communication efforts in terms of several important elements of risk communication research, including influence of source attributes, key messages, preferred channels, responses to information requests, and organizational influences. This study underlines that an institution does not have to be directly affected by a crisis to find itself on the communication "front lines." Moreover, other institutions may find it useful to learn from the experiences of this university, so that they may communicate more effectively during future crises.

  13. Confirmation of acute nitrate poisoning differentiating from anthrax in three Indian indigenous cattle

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kumaresan Nagarajan

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available This article reports cases of nitrate poisoning in Indian indigenous cattle breeds comprising two Gir cows aging 4 years each, and one Barugur cow at 1.5 years of age. The cattle with case history of sudden death and oozing of partially clotted blood from the anal opening were brought to the Central University Laboratory (CUL, Center for Animal Health Studies (CAHS, Tamil Nadu Veterinary and Animal Sciences University (TANUVAS for diagnostic investigation with a suspicion of anthrax. According to anamnesis, all the animals were clinically normal and did not reveal any abnormality on the previous day. The animals were fed with recently harvested sorghum leaves and stalks. Smears examined for anthrax were found negative. Biological test (mice inoculation for anthrax was also negative. Gross lesions on necropsy examination of the carcases were suggestive of nitrate intoxication. Finally, nitrate intoxication of these cattle was confirmed by chemical and toxicological analysis of fodder, rumen content, aqueous humor, liver, kidney and urine.

  14. Anthrax and the Geochemistry of Soils in the Contiguous United States

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dale W. Griffin

    2014-08-01

    Full Text Available Soil geochemical data from sample sites in counties that reported occurrences of anthrax in wildlife and livestock since 2000 were evaluated against counties within the same states (MN, MT, ND, NV, OR, SD and TX that did not report occurrences. These data identified the elements, calcium (Ca, manganese (Mn, phosphorus (P and strontium (Sr, as having statistically significant differences in concentrations between county type (anthrax occurrence versus no occurrence. Tentative threshold values of the lowest concentrations of each of these elements (Ca = 0.43 wt %, Mn = 142 mg/kg, P = 180 mg/kg and Sr = 51 mg/kg and average concentrations (Ca = 1.3 wt %, Mn = 463 mg/kg, P = 580 mg/kg and Sr = 170 mg/kg were identified from anthrax-positive counties as prospective investigative tools in determining whether an outbreak had “potential” or was “likely” at any given geographic location in the contiguous United States.

  15. Fucosylation and protein glycosylation create functional receptors for cholera toxin

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Wands, Amberlyn M; Fujita, Akiko; McCombs, Janet E

    2015-01-01

    Cholera toxin (CT) enters and intoxicates host cells after binding cell surface receptors using its B subunit (CTB). The ganglioside (glycolipid) GM1 is thought to be the sole CT receptor; however, the mechanism by which CTB binding to GM1 mediates internalization of CT remains enigmatic. Here we...... in normal human intestinal epithelia and could play a role in cholera....

  16. Gastrointestinal helminths may affect host susceptibility to anthrax through seasonal immune trade-offs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cizauskas, Carrie A; Turner, Wendy C; Wagner, Bettina; Küsters, Martina; Vance, Russell E; Getz, Wayne M

    2014-11-12

    Most vertebrates experience coinfections, and many pathogen-pathogen interactions occur indirectly through the host immune system. These interactions are particularly strong in mixed micro-macroparasite infections because of immunomodulatory effects of helminth parasites. While these trade-offs have been examined extensively in laboratory animals, few studies have examined them in natural systems. Additionally, many wildlife pathogens fluctuate seasonally, at least partly due to seasonal host immune changes. We therefore examined seasonality of immune resource allocation, pathogen abundance and exposure, and interactions between infections and immunity in plains zebra (Equus quagga) in Etosha National Park (ENP), Namibia, a system with strongly seasonal patterns of gastrointestinal (GI) helminth infection intensity and concurrent anthrax outbreaks. Both pathogens are environmentally transmitted, and helminth seasonality is driven by environmental pressures on free living life stages. The reasons behind anthrax seasonality are currently not understood, though anthrax is less likely directly driven by environmental factors. We measured a complex, interacting set of variables and found evidence that GI helminth infection intensities, eosinophil counts, IgE and IgGb antibody titers, and possibly IL-4 cytokine signaling were increased in wetter seasons, and that ectoparasite infestations and possibly IFN-γ cytokine signaling were increased in drier seasons. Monocyte counts and anti-anthrax antibody titers were negatively associated with wet season eosinophilia, and monocytes were negatively correlated with IgGb and IgE titers. Taken together, this supports the hypothesis that ENP wet seasons are characterized by immune resource allocation toward Th-2 type responses, while Th1-type immunity may prevail in drier seasons, and that hosts may experience Th1-Th2 trade-offs. We found evidence that this Th2-type resource allocation is likely driven by GI parasite infections

  17. Edema toxin impairs anthracidal phospholipase A2 expression by alveolar macrophages.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Benoit Raymond

    2007-12-01

    Full Text Available Bacillus anthracis, the etiological agent of anthrax, is a spore-forming gram-positive bacterium. Infection with this pathogen results in multisystem dysfunction and death. The pathogenicity of B. anthracis is due to the production of virulence factors, including edema toxin (ET. Recently, we established the protective role of type-IIA secreted phospholipase A2 (sPLA2-IIA against B. anthracis. A component of innate immunity produced by alveolar macrophages (AMs, sPLA2-IIA is found in human and animal bronchoalveolar lavages at sufficient levels to kill B. anthracis. However, pulmonary anthrax is almost always fatal, suggesting the potential impairment of sPLA2-IIA synthesis and/or action by B. anthracis factors. We investigated the effect of purified ET and ET-deficient B. anthracis strains on sPLA2-IIA expression in primary guinea pig AMs. We report that ET inhibits sPLA2-IIA expression in AMs at the transcriptional level via a cAMP/protein kinase A-dependent process. Moreover, we show that live B. anthracis strains expressing functional ET inhibit sPLA2-IIA expression, whereas ET-deficient strains induced this expression. This stimulatory effect, mediated partly by the cell wall peptidoglycan, can be counterbalanced by ET. We conclude that B. anthracis down-regulates sPLA2-IIA expression in AMs through a process involving ET. Our study, therefore, describes a new molecular mechanism implemented by B. anthracis to escape innate host defense. These pioneering data will provide new molecular targets for future intervention against this deadly pathogen.

  18. Botulinum toxin in pain treatment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Colhado, Orlando Carlos Gomes; Boeing, Marcelo; Ortega, Luciano Bornia

    2009-01-01

    Botulinum toxin (BTX) is one of the most potent bacterial toxins known and its effectiveness in the treatment of some pain syndromes is well known. However, the efficacy of some of its indications is still in the process of being confirmed. The objective of this study was to review the history, pharmacological properties, and clinical applications of BTX in the treatment of pain of different origins. Botulinum toxin is produced by fermentation of Clostridium botulinum, a Gram-positive, anaerobic bacterium. Commercially, BTX comes in two presentations, types A and B. Botulinum toxin, a neurotoxin with high affinity for cholinergic synapses, blocks the release of acetylcholine by nerve endings without interfering with neuronal conduction of electrical signals or synthesis and storage of acetylcholine. It has been proven that BTX can selectively weaken painful muscles, interrupting the spasm-pain cycle. Several studies have demonstrated the efficacy and safety of BTX-A in the treatment of tension headaches, migraines, chronic lumbar pain, and myofascial pain. Botulinum toxin type A is well tolerated in the treatment of chronic pain disorders in which pharmacotherapy regimens can cause side effects. The reduction in the consumption of analgesics and length of action of 3 to 4 months per dose represent other advantages of its use. However, further studies are necessary to establish the efficacy of BTX-A in chronic pain disorders and its exact mechanism of action, as well as its potential in multifactorial treatments.

  19. Entry of Shiga toxin into cells

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Sandvig, Kirsten; van Deurs, Bo

    1994-01-01

    Cellebiologi, Shiga toxin, receptors, glycolipids, endocytosis, trans-Golgi network, endoplasmic reticulum, retrograde transport......Cellebiologi, Shiga toxin, receptors, glycolipids, endocytosis, trans-Golgi network, endoplasmic reticulum, retrograde transport...

  20. Inhibition of cholera toxin and other AB toxins by polyphenolic compounds

    Science.gov (United States)

    All AB-type protein toxins have intracellular targets despite an initial extracellular location. These toxins use different methods to reach the cytosol and have different effects on the target cell. Broad-spectrum inhibitors against AB toxins are therefore hard to develop because the toxins use dif...

  1. Toxin synergism in snake venoms

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Laustsen, Andreas Hougaard

    2016-01-01

    Synergism between venom toxins exists for a range of snake species. Synergism can be derived from both intermolecular interactions and supramolecular interactions between venom components, and can be the result of toxins targeting the same protein, biochemical pathway or physiological process. Few...... simple systematic tools and methods for determining the presence of synergism exist, but include co-administration of venom components and assessment of Accumulated Toxicity Scores. A better understanding of how to investigate synergism in snake venoms may help unravel strategies for developing novel...

  2. Binding properties of Clostridium botulinum type C progenitor toxin to mucins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nakamura, Toshio; Takada, Noriko; Tonozuka, Takashi; Sakano, Yoshiyuki; Oguma, Keiji; Nishikawa, Atsushi

    2007-04-01

    It has been reported that Clostridium botulinum type C 16S progenitor toxin (C16S toxin) first binds to the sialic acid on the cell surface of mucin before invading cells [A. Nishikawa, N. Uotsu, H. Arimitsu, J.C. Lee, Y. Miura, Y. Fujinaga, H. Nakada, T. Watanabe, T. Ohyama, Y. Sakano, K. Oguma, The receptor and transporter for internalization of Clostridium botulinum type C progenitor toxin into HT-29 cells, Biochem. Biophys. Res. Commun. 319 (2004) 327-333]. In this study we investigated the binding properties of the C16S toxin to glycoproteins. Although the toxin bound to membrane blotted mucin derived from the bovine submaxillary gland (BSM), which contains a lot of sialyl oligosaccharides, it did not bind to neuraminidase-treated BSM. The binding of the toxin to BSM was inhibited by N-acetylneuraminic acid, N-glycolylneuraminic acid, and sialyl oligosaccharides strongly, but was not inhibited by neutral oligosaccharides. Both sialyl alpha2-3 lactose and sialyl alpha2-6 lactose prevented binding similarly. On the other hand, the toxin also bound well to porcine gastric mucin. In this case, neutral oligosaccharides might play an important role as ligand, since galactose and lactose inhibited binding. These results suggest that the toxin is capable of recognizing a wide variety of oligosaccharide structures.

  3. Approval of raxibacumab for the treatment of inhalation anthrax under the US Food and Drug Administration Animal rule

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chia-Wei eTsai

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available On December 14, 2012, the FDA approved raxibacumab, the first product developed under Project BioShield to achieve this milestone, and the first biologic product to be approved through the FDA animal efficacy rule (or Animal Rule. Raxibacumab is approved for the treatment of adult and pediatric patients with inhalational anthrax due to Bacillus anthracis in combination with appropriate antibiotic drugs and for prophylaxis of inhalational anthrax when alternative therapies are not available or are not appropriate. The approval of Raxibacumab illustrates many of the challenges that product developers may encounter when pursuing approval under the Animal Rule and highlights a number of important regulatory and policy issues.

  4. Estimating the location and spatial extent of a covert anthrax release.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Judith Legrand

    2009-01-01

    Full Text Available Rapidly identifying the features of a covert release of an agent such as anthrax could help to inform the planning of public health mitigation strategies. Previous studies have sought to estimate the time and size of a bioterror attack based on the symptomatic onset dates of early cases. We extend the scope of these methods by proposing a method for characterizing the time, strength, and also the location of an aerosolized pathogen release. A back-calculation method is developed allowing the characterization of the release based on the data on the first few observed cases of the subsequent outbreak, meteorological data, population densities, and data on population travel patterns. We evaluate this method on small simulated anthrax outbreaks (about 25-35 cases and show that it could date and localize a release after a few cases have been observed, although misspecifications of the spore dispersion model, or the within-host dynamics model, on which the method relies can bias the estimates. Our method could also provide an estimate of the outbreak's geographical extent and, as a consequence, could help to identify populations at risk and, therefore, requiring prophylactic treatment. Our analysis demonstrates that while estimates based on the first ten or 15 observed cases were more accurate and less sensitive to model misspecifications than those based on five cases, overall mortality is minimized by targeting prophylactic treatment early on the basis of estimates made using data on the first five cases. The method we propose could provide early estimates of the time, strength, and location of an aerosolized anthrax release and the geographical extent of the subsequent outbreak. In addition, estimates of release features could be used to parameterize more detailed models allowing the simulation of control strategies and intervention logistics.

  5. [Environmental toxins in breast milk].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bratlid, Dag

    2009-12-17

    Breast milk is very important to ensure infants a well-composed and safe diet during the first year of life. However, the quality of breast milk seems to be affected by an increasing amount of environmental toxins (particularly so-called Persistent, Bioaccumulative Toxins [PBTs]). Many concerns have been raised about the negative effects this may have on infant health. The article is a review of literature (mainly review articles) identified through a non-systematic search in PubMed. The concentration of PBTs in breast milk is mainly caused by man's position as the terminal link in the nutritional chain. Many breast-fed infants have a daily intake of such toxins that exceed limits defined for the population in general. Animal studies demonstrate effects on endocrine function and neurotoxicity in the offspring, and a number of human studies seem to point in the same direction. However the "original" optimal composition of breast milk still seems to protect against long-term effects of such toxicity. There is international consensus about the need to monitor breast milk for the presence of PBTs. Such surveillance will be a good indicator of the population's general exposure to these toxins and may also contribute to identifying groups as risk who should not breast-feed their children for a long time.

  6. Risk Assessment of Shellfish Toxins

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rex Munday

    2013-11-01

    Full Text Available Complex secondary metabolites, some of which are highly toxic to mammals, are produced by many marine organisms. Some of these organisms are important food sources for marine animals and, when ingested, the toxins that they produce may be absorbed and stored in the tissues of the predators, which then become toxic to animals higher up the food chain. This is a particular problem with shellfish, and many cases of poisoning are reported in shellfish consumers each year. At present, there is no practicable means of preventing uptake of the toxins by shellfish or of removing them after harvesting. Assessment of the risk posed by such toxins is therefore required in order to determine levels that are unlikely to cause adverse effects in humans and to permit the establishment of regulatory limits in shellfish for human consumption. In the present review, the basic principles of risk assessment are described, and the progress made toward robust risk assessment of seafood toxins is discussed. While good progress has been made, it is clear that further toxicological studies are required before this goal is fully achieved.

  7. Food irradiation and bacterial toxins

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Tranter, H.S.; Modi, N.K.; Hambleton, P.; Melling, J.; Rose, S.; Stringer, M.F.

    1987-01-01

    The authors' findings indicate that irradiation confers no advantage over heat processing in respect of bacterial toxins (clostridium botulinum, neurotoxin A and staphylococcal enterotoxin A). It follows that irradiation at doses less than the ACINF recommended upper limit of 10 kGy could not be used to improve the ambient temperature shelf life on non-acid foods. (author)

  8. Botulinum toxin for vaginismus treatment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ferreira, Juliana Rocha; Souza, Renan Pedra

    2012-01-01

    Vaginismus is characterized by recurrent or persistent involuntary contraction of the perineal muscles surrounding the outer third of the vagina when penile, finger, tampon, or speculum penetration is attempted. Recent results have suggested the use of botulinum toxin for the treatment of vaginismus. Here, we assessed previously published data to evaluate the therapeutic effectiveness of botulinum toxin for vaginismus. We have carried out a systematic review followed by a meta-analysis. Our results indicate that botulinum toxin is an effective therapeutic option for patients with vaginismus (pooled odds ratio of 8.723 with 95% confidence interval limits of 1.942 and 39.162, p = 0.005). This may hold particularly true in treatment-refractory patients because most of the studies included in this meta-analysis have enrolled these subjects in their primary analysis. Botulinum toxin appears to bea reasonable intervention for vaginismus. However, this conclusion should be read carefully because of the deficiency of placebo-controlled randomized clinical trials and the quality issues presented in the existing ones.

  9. Shigella Sonnei and Shiga Toxin

    Centers for Disease Control (CDC) Podcasts

    2016-07-28

    Katherine Lamba, an infectious disease epidemiologist with the California Department of Public Health, discusses Shiga Toxin producing Shigella sonnei.  Created: 7/28/2016 by National Center for Emerging and Zoonotic Infectious Diseases (NCEZID).   Date Released: 7/28/2016.

  10. Elimination of Endogenous Toxin, Creatinine from Blood Plasma Depends on Albumin Conformation: Site Specific Uremic Toxicity & Impaired Drug Binding

    Science.gov (United States)

    Varshney, Ankita; Rehan, Mohd; Subbarao, Naidu; Rabbani, Gulam; Khan, Rizwan Hasan

    2011-01-01

    Uremic syndrome results from malfunctioning of various organ systems due to the retention of uremic toxins which, under normal conditions, would be excreted into the urine and/or metabolized by the kidneys. The aim of this study was to elucidate the mechanisms underlying the renal elimination of uremic toxin creatinine that accumulate in chronic renal failure. Quantitative investigation of the plausible correlations was performed by spectroscopy, calorimetry, molecular docking and accessibility of surface area. Alkalinization of normal plasma from pH 7.0 to 9.0 modifies the distribution of toxin in the body and therefore may affect both the accumulation and the rate of toxin elimination. The ligand loading of HSA with uremic toxin predicts several key side chain interactions of site I that presumably have the potential to impact the specificity and impaired drug binding. These findings provide useful information for elucidating the complicated mechanism of toxin disposition in renal disease state. PMID:21386972

  11. Multiagent vaccines vectored by Venezuelan equine encephalitis virus replicon elicits immune responses to Marburg virus and protection against anthrax and botulinum neurotoxin in mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, John S; Groebner, Jennifer L; Hadjipanayis, Angela G; Negley, Diane L; Schmaljohn, Alan L; Welkos, Susan L; Smith, Leonard A; Smith, Jonathan F

    2006-11-17

    The development of multiagent vaccines offers the advantage of eliciting protection against multiple diseases with minimal inoculations over a shorter time span. We report here the results of using formulations of individual Venezuelan equine encephalitis (VEE) virus replicon-vectored vaccines against a bacterial disease, anthrax; a viral disease, Marburg fever; and against a toxin-mediated disease, botulism. The individual VEE replicon particles (VRP) expressed mature 83-kDa protective antigen (MAT-PA) from Bacillus anthracis, the glycoprotein (GP) from Marburg virus (MBGV), or the H(C) fragment from botulinum neurotoxin (BoNT H(C)). CBA/J mice inoculated with a mixture of VRP expressing BoNT H(C) serotype C (BoNT/C H(C)) and MAT-PA were 80% protected from a B. anthracis (Sterne strain) challenge and then 100% protected from a sequential BoNT/C challenge. Swiss mice inoculated with individual VRP or with mixtures of VRP vaccines expressing BoNT H(C) serotype A (BoNT/A H(C)), MAT-PA, and MBGV-GP produced antibody responses specific to the corresponding replicon-expressed protein. Combination of the different VRP vaccines did not diminish the antibody responses measured for Swiss mice inoculated with formulations of two or three VRP vaccines as compared to mice that received only one VRP vaccine. Swiss mice inoculated with VRP expressing BoNT/A H(C) alone or in combination with VRP expressing MAT-PA and MBGV GP, were completely protected from a BoNT/A challenge. These studies demonstrate the utility of combining individual VRP vaccines into multiagent formulations for eliciting protective immune responses to various types of diseases.

  12. [Genodiagnosis and molecular typing of the pathogens for plague, cholera, and anthrax].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kutyrev, V V; Smirnova, N I

    2003-01-01

    The paper contains a survey of published data about the use of DNA-diagnostics in indicating and identifying the causative agents of highly dangerous infections like plague, cholera and anthrax. A discussion of data about the genetic relationship between strains of the mentioned causative agents isolated from different sources by using the molecular-typing methods as well as about the evolution ties between strains of different origins is in the focus of attention. Results of comparative studies of nucleotide sequences of genomes or of individual genomes in different Yersinia pestis, Vibrio cholerae and Bacillus anthracis strains, which are indicative of the evolution of their pathogenicity, are also under discussion.

  13. Clostridium difficile toxin CDT induces formation of microtubule-based protrusions and increases adherence of bacteria.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carsten Schwan

    2009-10-01

    Full Text Available Clostridium difficile causes antibiotic-associated diarrhea and pseudomembranous colitis by production of the Rho GTPase-glucosylating toxins A and B. Recently emerging hypervirulent Clostridium difficile strains additionally produce the binary ADP-ribosyltransferase toxin CDT (Clostridium difficile transferase, which ADP-ribosylates actin and inhibits actin polymerization. Thus far, the role of CDT as a virulence factor is not understood. Here we report by using time-lapse- and immunofluorescence microscopy that CDT and other binary actin-ADP-ribosylating toxins, including Clostridium botulinum C2 toxin and Clostridium perfringens iota toxin, induce redistribution of microtubules and formation of long (up to >150 microm microtubule-based protrusions at the surface of intestinal epithelial cells. The toxins increase the length of decoration of microtubule plus-ends by EB1/3, CLIP-170 and CLIP-115 proteins and cause redistribution of the capture proteins CLASP2 and ACF7 from microtubules at the cell cortex into the cell interior. The CDT-induced microtubule protrusions form a dense meshwork at the cell surface, which wrap and embed bacterial cells, thereby largely increasing the adherence of Clostridia. The study describes a novel type of microtubule structure caused by less efficient microtubule capture and offers a new perspective for the pathogenetic role of CDT and other binary actin-ADP-ribosylating toxins in host-pathogen interactions.

  14. Bacterial community affects toxin production by Gymnodinium catenatum.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maria E Albinsson

    Full Text Available The paralytic shellfish toxin (PST-producing dinoflagellate Gymnodinium catenatum grows in association with a complex marine bacterial community that is both essential for growth and can alter culture growth dynamics. Using a bacterial community replacement approach, we examined the intracellular PST content, production rate, and profile of G. catenatum cultures grown with bacterial communities of differing complexity and composition. Clonal offspring were established from surface-sterilized resting cysts (produced by sexual crosses of strain GCDE06 and strain GCLV01 and grown with: 1 complex bacterial communities derived from each of the two parent cultures; 2 simplified bacterial communities composed of the G. catenatum-associated bacteria Marinobacter sp. strain DG879 or Alcanivorax sp. strain DG881; 3 a complex bacterial community associated with an untreated, unsterilized sexual cross of the parents. Toxin content (STX-equivalent per cell of clonal offspring (134-197 fmol STX cell(-1 was similar to the parent cultures (169-206 fmol STX cell(-1, however cultures grown with single bacterial types contained less toxin (134-146 fmol STX cell(-1 than offspring or parent cultures grown with more complex mixed bacterial communities (152-176 fmol STX cell(-1. Specific toxin production rate (fmol STX day(-1 was strongly correlated with culture growth rate. Net toxin production rate (fmol STX cell(-1 day(-1 did not differ among treatments, however, mean net toxin production rate of offspring was 8-fold lower than the parent cultures, suggesting that completion of the sexual lifecycle in laboratory cultures leads to reduced toxin production. The PST profiles of offspring cultures were most similar to parent GCDE06 with the exception of cultures grown with Marinobacter sp. DG879 which produced higher proportions of dcGTX2+3 and GC1+2, and lower proportions of C1+2 and C3+4. Our data demonstrate that the bacterial community can alter intracellular STX

  15. Bacterial community affects toxin production by Gymnodinium catenatum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Albinsson, Maria E; Negri, Andrew P; Blackburn, Susan I; Bolch, Christopher J S

    2014-01-01

    The paralytic shellfish toxin (PST)-producing dinoflagellate Gymnodinium catenatum grows in association with a complex marine bacterial community that is both essential for growth and can alter culture growth dynamics. Using a bacterial community replacement approach, we examined the intracellular PST content, production rate, and profile of G. catenatum cultures grown with bacterial communities of differing complexity and composition. Clonal offspring were established from surface-sterilized resting cysts (produced by sexual crosses of strain GCDE06 and strain GCLV01) and grown with: 1) complex bacterial communities derived from each of the two parent cultures; 2) simplified bacterial communities composed of the G. catenatum-associated bacteria Marinobacter sp. strain DG879 or Alcanivorax sp. strain DG881; 3) a complex bacterial community associated with an untreated, unsterilized sexual cross of the parents. Toxin content (STX-equivalent per cell) of clonal offspring (134-197 fmol STX cell(-1)) was similar to the parent cultures (169-206 fmol STX cell(-1)), however cultures grown with single bacterial types contained less toxin (134-146 fmol STX cell(-1)) than offspring or parent cultures grown with more complex mixed bacterial communities (152-176 fmol STX cell(-1)). Specific toxin production rate (fmol STX day(-1)) was strongly correlated with culture growth rate. Net toxin production rate (fmol STX cell(-1) day(-1)) did not differ among treatments, however, mean net toxin production rate of offspring was 8-fold lower than the parent cultures, suggesting that completion of the sexual lifecycle in laboratory cultures leads to reduced toxin production. The PST profiles of offspring cultures were most similar to parent GCDE06 with the exception of cultures grown with Marinobacter sp. DG879 which produced higher proportions of dcGTX2+3 and GC1+2, and lower proportions of C1+2 and C3+4. Our data demonstrate that the bacterial community can alter intracellular STX

  16. Patients' request for and emergency physicians' prescription of antimicrobial prophylaxis for anthrax during the 2001 bioterrorism-related outbreak

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Aber Robert C

    2005-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Inappropriate use of antibiotics by individuals worried about biological agent exposures during bioterrorism events is an important public health concern. However, little is documented about the extent to which individuals with self-identified risk of anthrax exposure approached physicians for antimicrobial prophylaxis during the 2001 bioterrorism attacks in the United States. Methods We conducted a telephone survey of randomly selected members of the Pennsylvania Chapter of the American College of Emergency Physicians to assess patients' request for and emergency physicians' prescription of antimicrobial agents during the 2001 anthrax attacks. Results Ninety-seven physicians completed the survey. Sixty-four (66% respondents had received requests from patients for anthrax prophylaxis; 16 (25% of these physicians prescribed antibiotics to a total of 23 patients. Ten physicians prescribed ciprofloxacin while 8 physicians prescribed doxycycline. Conclusion During the 2001 bioterrorist attacks, the majority of the emergency physicians we surveyed encountered patients who requested anthrax prophylaxis. Public fears may lead to a high demand for antibiotic prophylaxis during bioterrorism events. Elucidation of the relationship between public health response to outbreaks and outcomes would yield insights to ease burden on frontline clinicians and guide strategies to control inappropriate antibiotic allocation during bioterrorist events.

  17. 9 CFR 310.9 - Anthrax; carcasses not to be eviscerated; disposition of affected carcasses; hides, hoofs, horns...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-01-01

    ... have handled anthrax material is thorough cleansing of the hands and arms with liquid soap and running... Animal Products FOOD SAFETY AND INSPECTION SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE AGENCY ORGANIZATION AND... request to the Scientific Services, Meat and Poultry Inspection, Food Safety and Inspection Service, U.S...

  18. 9 CFR 309.7 - Livestock affected with anthrax; cleaning and disinfection of infected livestock pens and driveways.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-01-01

    ...; cleaning and disinfection of infected livestock pens and driveways. 309.7 Section 309.7 Animals and Animal... INSPECTION § 309.7 Livestock affected with anthrax; cleaning and disinfection of infected livestock pens and... followed immediately by a thorough disinfection of the exposed premises by soaking the ground, fences...

  19. Detection of anthrax lef with DNA-based photonic crystal sensors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Bailin; Dallo, Shatha; Peterson, Ralph; Hussain, Syed; Weitao, Tao; Ye, Jing Yong

    2011-12-01

    Bacillus anthracis has posed a threat of becoming biological weapons of mass destruction due to its virulence factors encoded by the plasmid-borne genes, such as lef for lethal factor. We report the development of a fast and sensitive anthrax DNA biosensor based on a photonic crystal structure used in a total-internal-reflection configuration. For the detection of the lef gene, a single-stranded DNA lef probe was biotinylated and immobilized onto the sensor via biotin-streptavidin interactions. A positive control, lef-com, was the complementary strand of the probe, while a negative control was an unrelated single-stranded DNA fragment from the 16S rRNA gene of Acinetobacter baumannii. After addition of the biotinylated lef probe onto the sensor, significant changes in the resonance wavelength of the sensor were observed, resulting from binding of the probe to streptavidin on the sensor. The addition of lef-com led to another significant increase as a result of hybridization between the two DNA strands. The detection sensitivity for the target DNA reached as low as 0.1 nM. In contrast, adding the unrelated DNAs did not cause an obvious shift in the resonant wavelength. These results demonstrate that detection of the anthrax lef by the photonic crystal structure in a total-internal-reflection sensor is highly specific and sensitive.

  20. Molecular Dynamics Simulation of Cholera Toxin A-1 Polypeptide

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Badshah Syed Lal

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available A molecular dynamics (MD simulation study of the enzymatic portion of cholera toxin; cholera toxin A-1 polypeptide (CTA1 was performed at 283, 310 and 323 K. From total energy analysis it was observed that this toxin is stable thermodynamically and these outcomes were likewise confirmed by root mean square deviations (RMSD investigations. The Cα root mean square fluctuation (RMSF examinations revealed that there are a number of residues inside CTA1, which can be used as target for designing and synthesizing inhibitory drugs, in order to inactivate cholera toxin inside the human body. The fluctuations in the radius of gyration and hydrogen bonding in CTA1 proved that protein unfolding and refolding were normal routine phenomena in its structure at all temperatures. Solvent accessible surface area study identified the hydrophilic nature of the CTA1, and due to this property it can be a potential biological weapon. The structural identification (STRIDE algorithm for proteins was successfully used to determine the partially disordered secondary structure of CTA1. On account of this partially disordered secondary structure, it can easily deceive the proteolytic enzymes of the endoplasmic reticulum of host cells.

  1. Structure of a bacterial toxin-activating acyltransferase.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Greene, Nicholas P; Crow, Allister; Hughes, Colin; Koronakis, Vassilis

    2015-06-09

    Secreted pore-forming toxins of pathogenic Gram-negative bacteria such as Escherichia coli hemolysin (HlyA) insert into host-cell membranes to subvert signal transduction and induce apoptosis and cell lysis. Unusually, these toxins are synthesized in an inactive form that requires posttranslational activation in the bacterial cytosol. We have previously shown that the activation mechanism is an acylation event directed by a specialized acyl-transferase that uses acyl carrier protein (ACP) to covalently link fatty acids, via an amide bond, to specific internal lysine residues of the protoxin. We now reveal the 2.15-Å resolution X-ray structure of the 172-aa ApxC, a toxin-activating acyl-transferase (TAAT) from pathogenic Actinobacillus pleuropneumoniae. This determination shows that bacterial TAATs are a structurally homologous family that, despite indiscernible sequence similarity, form a distinct branch of the Gcn5-like N-acetyl transferase (GNAT) superfamily of enzymes that typically use acyl-CoA to modify diverse bacterial, archaeal, and eukaryotic substrates. A combination of structural analysis, small angle X-ray scattering, mutagenesis, and cross-linking defined the solution state of TAATs, with intermonomer interactions mediated by an N-terminal α-helix. Superposition of ApxC with substrate-bound GNATs, and assay of toxin activation and binding of acyl-ACP and protoxin peptide substrates by mutated ApxC variants, indicates the enzyme active site to be a deep surface groove.

  2. Trimethyl Chitosan Nanoparticles Encapsulated Protective Antigen Protects the Mice Against Anthrax

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anshu Malik

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available Anthrax is an era old deadly disease against which there are only two currently available licensed vaccines named anthrax vaccine adsorbed and precipitated (AVP. Though they can provide a protective immunity, their multiple side-effects owing to their ill-defined composition and presence of toxic proteins (LF and EF of Bacillus anthracis, the causative organism of anthrax, in the vaccine formulation makes their widespread use objectionable. Hence, an anthrax vaccine that contains well-defined and controlled components would be highly desirable. In this context, we have evaluated the potential of various vaccine formulations comprising of protective antigen (PA encapsulated trimethyl-chitosan nanoparticles (TMC-PA in conjunction with either CpG-C ODN 2395 (CpG or Poly I:C. Each formulation was administered via three different routes, viz., subcutaneous (SC, intramuscular (IM, and intraperitoneal in female BALB/c mice. Irrespective of the route of immunization, CpG or Poly I:C adjuvanted TMC-PA nanoparticles induced a significantly higher humoral response (total serum IgG and its isotypes viz., IgG1, IgG2a, and IgG2b, compared to their CpG or Poly I:C PA counterparts. This clearly demonstrates the synergistic behavior of CpG and Poly I:C with TMC nanoparticles. The adjuvant potential of TMC nanoparticles could be observed in all the three routes as the TMC-PA nanoparticles by themselves induced IgG titers (1–1.5 × 105 significantly higher than both CpG PA and Poly I:C PA groups (2–8 × 104. The effect of formulations on T-helper (Th cell development was assessed by quantifying the Th1-dependant (TNF-α, IFN-γ, and IL-2, Th2-dependant (IL-4, IL-6, and IL-10, and Th17-type (IL-17A cytokines. Adjuvanation with CpG and Poly I:C, the TMC-PA nanoparticles triggered a Th1 skewed immune response, as suggested by an increase in the levels of total IgG2a along with IFN-γ cytokine production. Interestingly, the TMC-PA group showed a Th2-biased

  3. Why do we study animal toxins?

    Science.gov (United States)

    ZHANG, Yun

    2015-01-01

    Venom (toxins) is an important trait evolved along the evolutionary tree of animals. Our knowledges on venoms, such as their origins and loss, the biological relevance and the coevolutionary patterns with other organisms are greatly helpful in understanding many fundamental biological questions, i.e., the environmental adaptation and survival competition, the evolution shaped development and balance of venoms, and the sophisticated correlations among venom, immunity, body power, intelligence, their genetic basis, inherent association, as well as the cost-benefit and trade-offs of biological economy. Lethal animal envenomation can be found worldwide. However, from foe to friend, toxin studies have led lots of important discoveries and exciting avenues in deciphering and fighting human diseases, including the works awarded the Nobel Prize and lots of key clinic therapeutics. According to our survey, so far, only less than 0.1% of the toxins of the venomous animals in China have been explored. We emphasize on the similarities shared by venom and immune systems, as well as the studies of toxin knowledge-based physiological toxin-like proteins/peptides (TLPs). We propose the natural pairing hypothesis. Evolution links toxins with humans. Our mission is to find out the right natural pairings and interactions of our body elements with toxins, and with endogenous toxin-like molecules. Although, in nature, toxins may endanger human lives, but from a philosophical point of view, knowing them well is an effective way to better understand ourselves. So, this is why we study toxins. PMID:26228472

  4. Mutagenic Deimmunization of Diphtheria Toxin for Use in Biologic Drug Development

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Joerg U. Schmohl

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available Background: Targeted toxins require multiple treatments and therefore must be deimmunized. We report a method of protein deimmunization based on the point mutation of highly hydrophilic R, K, D, E, and Q amino acids on the molecular surface of truncated diphtheria-toxin (DT390. Methods: Based on their surface position derived from an X-ray-crystallographic model, residues were chosen for point mutation that were located in prominent positions on the molecular surface and away from the catalytic site. Mice were immunized with a targeted toxin containing either a mutated DT390 containing seven critical point mutations or the non-mutated parental toxin form. Results: Serum analysis revealed a significant 90% reduction in anti-toxin antibodies in mice immunized with the mutant, but not the parental drug form despite multiple immunizations. The experiment was repeated in a second strain of mice with a different MHC-haplotype to address whether point mutation removed T or B cell epitopes. Findings were identical indicating that B cell epitopes were eliminated from DT. The mutant drug form lost only minimal activity in vitro as well as in vivo. Conclusion: These findings indicate that this method may be effective for deimmunizing of other proteins and that discovery of a deimmunized form of DT may lead to the development of more effective targeted toxin.

  5. Acid Sphingomyelinase Promotes Cellular Internalization of Clostridium perfringens Iota-Toxin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nagahama, Masahiro; Takehara, Masaya; Miyamoto, Kazuaki; Ishidoh, Kazumi; Kobayashi, Keiko

    2018-05-20

    Clostridium perfringens iota-toxin is a binary actin-ADP-ribosylating toxin composed of the enzymatic component Ia and receptor binding component Ib. Ib binds to a cell surface receptor, forms Ib oligomer in lipid rafts, and associates with Ia. The Ia-Ib complex then internalizes by endocytosis. Here, we showed that acid sphingomyelinase (ASMase) facilitates the cellular uptake of iota-toxin. Inhibitions of ASMase and lysosomal exocytosis by respective blockers depressed cell rounding induced by iota-toxin. The cytotoxicity of the toxin increased in the presence of Ca 2+ in extracellular fluids. Ib entered target cells in the presence but not the absence of Ca 2+ . Ib induced the extracellular release of ASMase in the presence of Ca 2+ . ASMase siRNA prevented the cell rounding induced by iota-toxin. Furthermore, treatment of the cells with Ib resulted in the production of ceramide in cytoplasmic vesicles. These observations showed that ASMase promotes the internalization of iota-toxin into target cells.

  6. Adenylate cyclase toxin promotes internalisation of integrins and raft components and decreases macrophage adhesion capacity.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    César Martín

    Full Text Available Bordetella pertussis, the bacterium that causes whooping cough, secretes an adenylate cyclase toxin (ACT that must be post-translationally palmitoylated in the bacterium cytosol to be active. The toxin targets phagocytes expressing the CD11b/CD18 integrin receptor. It delivers a catalytic adenylate cyclase domain into the target cell cytosol producing a rapid increase of intracellular cAMP concentration that suppresses bactericidal functions of the phagocyte. ACT also induces calcium fluxes into target cells. Biochemical, biophysical and cell biology approaches have been applied here to show evidence that ACT and integrin molecules, along with other raft components, are rapidly internalized by the macrophages in a toxin-induced calcium rise-dependent process. The toxin-triggered internalisation events occur through two different routes of entry, chlorpromazine-sensitive receptor-mediated endocytosis and clathrin-independent internalisation, maybe acting in parallel. ACT locates into raft-like domains, and is internalised, also in cells devoid of receptor. Altogether our results suggest that adenylate cyclase toxin, and maybe other homologous pathogenic toxins from the RTX (Repeats in Toxin family to which ACT belongs, may be endowed with an intrinsic capacity to, directly and efficiently, insert into raft-like domains, promoting there its multiple activities. One direct consequence of the integrin removal from the cell surface of the macrophages is the hampering of their adhesion ability, a fundamental property in the immune response of the leukocytes that could be instrumental in the pathogenesis of Bordetella pertussis.

  7. Adenylate cyclase toxin promotes internalisation of integrins and raft components and decreases macrophage adhesion capacity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martín, César; Uribe, Kepa B; Gómez-Bilbao, Geraxane; Ostolaza, Helena

    2011-02-23

    Bordetella pertussis, the bacterium that causes whooping cough, secretes an adenylate cyclase toxin (ACT) that must be post-translationally palmitoylated in the bacterium cytosol to be active. The toxin targets phagocytes expressing the CD11b/CD18 integrin receptor. It delivers a catalytic adenylate cyclase domain into the target cell cytosol producing a rapid increase of intracellular cAMP concentration that suppresses bactericidal functions of the phagocyte. ACT also induces calcium fluxes into target cells. Biochemical, biophysical and cell biology approaches have been applied here to show evidence that ACT and integrin molecules, along with other raft components, are rapidly internalized by the macrophages in a toxin-induced calcium rise-dependent process. The toxin-triggered internalisation events occur through two different routes of entry, chlorpromazine-sensitive receptor-mediated endocytosis and clathrin-independent internalisation, maybe acting in parallel. ACT locates into raft-like domains, and is internalised, also in cells devoid of receptor. Altogether our results suggest that adenylate cyclase toxin, and maybe other homologous pathogenic toxins from the RTX (Repeats in Toxin) family to which ACT belongs, may be endowed with an intrinsic capacity to, directly and efficiently, insert into raft-like domains, promoting there its multiple activities. One direct consequence of the integrin removal from the cell surface of the macrophages is the hampering of their adhesion ability, a fundamental property in the immune response of the leukocytes that could be instrumental in the pathogenesis of Bordetella pertussis.

  8. Structure and action of the binary C2 toxin from Clostridium botulinum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schleberger, Christian; Hochmann, Henrike; Barth, Holger; Aktories, Klaus; Schulz, Georg E

    2006-12-08

    C2 toxin from Clostridium botulinum is composed of the enzyme component C2-I, which ADP-ribosylates actin, and the binding and translocation component C2-II, responsible for the interaction with eukaryotic cell receptors and the following endocytosis. Three C2-I crystal structures at resolutions of up to 1.75 A are presented together with a crystal structure of C2-II at an appreciably lower resolution and a model of the prepore formed by fragment C2-IIa. The C2-I structure was determined at pH 3.0 and at pH 6.1. The structural differences are small, indicating that C2-I does not unfold, even at a pH value as low as 3.0. The ADP-ribosyl transferase activity of C2-I was determined for alpha and beta/gamma-actin and related to that of Iota toxin and of mutant S361R of C2-I that introduced the arginine observed in Iota toxin. The substantial activity differences between alpha and beta/gamma-actin cannot be explained by the protein structures currently available. The structure of the transport component C2-II at pH 4.3 was established by molecular replacement using a model of the protective antigen of anthrax toxin at pH 6.0. The C-terminal receptor-binding domain of C2-II could not be located but was present in the crystals. It may be mobile. The relative orientation and positions of the four other domains of C2-II do not differ much from those of the protective antigen, indicating that no large conformational changes occur between pH 4.3 and pH 6.0. A model of the C2-IIa prepore structure was constructed based on the corresponding assembly of the protective antigen. It revealed a surprisingly large number of asparagine residues lining the pore. The interaction between C2-I and C2-IIa and the translocation of C2-I into the target cell are discussed.

  9. Role of Food Insecurity in Outbreak of Anthrax Infections among Humans and Hippopotamuses Living in a Game Reserve Area, Rural Zambia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lehman, Mark W; Craig, Allen S; Malama, Constantine; Kapina-Kany'anga, Muzala; Malenga, Philip; Munsaka, Fanny; Muwowo, Sergio; Shadomy, Sean; Marx, Melissa A

    2017-09-01

    In September 2011, a total of 511 human cases of anthrax (Bacillus anthracis) infection and 5 deaths were reported in a game management area in the district of Chama, Zambia, near where 85 hippopotamuses (Hippopotamus amphibious) had recently died of suspected anthrax. The human infections generally responded to antibiotics. To clarify transmission, we conducted a cross-sectional, interviewer-administered household survey in villages where human anthrax cases and hippopotamuses deaths were reported. Among 284 respondents, 84% ate hippopotamus meat before the outbreak. Eating, carrying, and preparing meat were associated with anthrax infection. Despite the risk, 23% of respondents reported they would eat meat from hippopotamuses found dead again because of food shortage (73%), lack of meat (12%), hunger (7%), and protein shortage (5%). Chronic food insecurity can lead to consumption of unsafe foods, leaving communities susceptible to zoonotic infection. Interagency cooperation is necessary to prevent outbreaks by addressing the root cause of exposure, such as food insecurity.

  10. Computational Studies of Snake Venom Toxins

    OpenAIRE

    Paola G. Ojeda; David Ramírez; Jans Alzate-Morales; Julio Caballero; Quentin Kaas; Wendy González

    2017-01-01

    Most snake venom toxins are proteins, and participate to envenomation through a diverse array of bioactivities, such as bleeding, inflammation, and pain, cytotoxic, cardiotoxic or neurotoxic effects. The venom of a single snake species contains hundreds of toxins, and the venoms of the 725 species of venomous snakes represent a large pool of potentially bioactive proteins. Despite considerable discovery efforts, most of the snake venom toxins are still uncharacterized. Modern bioinformatics t...

  11. Collaborative Research Program on Seafood Toxins

    Science.gov (United States)

    1988-08-14

    Crystallographic Structures of Saxitoxins Cl and C2 Appendix C: Collaborative Research Program an Seafcod Toxins Progress Report on Ciguatera and Related...radioimmunoassay for PSP were also evalumted. The Hokama stick test for ciguatera toxin was also evaluated. 4. initiate Studies on the Accumulation...tco•d which caie a form of b-mnn poisoning referred to as ciguatera . The respcnsible toxins originate from ll1ular rine algae of the division

  12. PREDICTION OF AEROSOL HAZARDS ARISING FROM THE OPENING OF AN ANTHRAX-TAINTED LETTER IN AN OPEN OFFICE ENVIRONMENT USING COMPUTATIONAL FLUID DYNAMICS

    OpenAIRE

    FUE-SANG LIEN; HUA JI; EUGENE YEE; BILL KOURNIKAKIS

    2010-01-01

    Early experimental work, conducted at Defence R&D Canada–Suffield, measured and characterized the personal and environmental contamination associated with simulated anthrax-tainted letters under a number of different scenarios in order to obtain a better understanding of the physical and biological processes for detecting, assessing, and formulating potential mitigation strategies for managing the risks associated with opening an anthrax-tainted letter. These experimental investigations have ...

  13. Failure of botulinum toxin injection for neurogenic detrusor overactivity: Switch of toxin versus second injection of the same toxin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peyronnet, Benoit; Castel-Lacanal, Evelyne; Manunta, Andréa; Roumiguié, Mathieu; Marque, Philippe; Rischmann, Pascal; Gamé, Xavier

    2015-12-01

    To evaluate the efficacy of a second injection of the same toxin versus switching to a different botulinum toxin A after failure of a first detrusor injection in patients with neurogenic detrusor overactivity. The charts of all patients who underwent detrusor injections of botulinum toxin A (either abobotulinumtoxinA or onabotulinumtoxinA) for the management of neurogenic detrusor overactivity at a single institution were retrospectively reviewed. Patients in whom a first detrusor injection had failed were included in the present study. They were managed by a second injection of the same toxin at the same dosage or by a new detrusor injection using a different botulinum toxin A. Success was defined as a resolution of urgency, urinary incontinence and detrusor overactivity in a patient self-catheterizing seven times or less per 24 h. A total of 58 patients were included for analysis. A toxin switch was carried out in 29 patients, whereas the other 29 patients received a reinjection of the same toxin at the same dose. The success rate was higher in patients who received a toxin switch (51.7% vs. 24.1%, P = 0.03). Patients treated with a switch from abobotulinumtoxinA to onabotulinumtoxinA and those treated with a switch from onabotulinumtoxinA to abobotulinumtoxinA had similar success rates (52.9% vs. 50%, P = 0.88). After failure of a first detrusor injection of botulinum toxin for neurogenic detrusor overactivity, a switch to a different toxin seems to be more effective than a second injection of the same toxin. The replacement of onabotulinumtoxin by abobotulinumtoxin or the reverse provides similar results. © 2015 The Japanese Urological Association.

  14. Filaggrin-dependent secretion of sphingomyelinase protects against staphylococcal α-toxin-induced keratinocyte death.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brauweiler, Anne M; Bin, Lianghua; Kim, Byung Eui; Oyoshi, Michiko K; Geha, Raif S; Goleva, Elena; Leung, Donald Y M

    2013-02-01

    The skin of patients with atopic dermatitis (AD) has defects in keratinocyte differentiation, particularly in expression of the epidermal barrier protein filaggrin. AD skin lesions are often exacerbated by Staphylococcus aureus-mediated secretion of the virulence factor α-toxin. It is unknown whether lack of keratinocyte differentiation predisposes to enhanced lethality from staphylococcal toxins. We investigated whether keratinocyte differentiation and filaggrin expression protect against cell death induced by staphylococcal α-toxin. Filaggrin-deficient primary keratinocytes were generated through small interfering RNA gene knockdown. RNA expression was determined by using real-time PCR. Cell death was determined by using the lactate dehydrogenase assay. Keratinocyte cell survival in filaggrin-deficient (ft/ft) mouse skin biopsies was determined based on Keratin 5 staining. α-Toxin heptamer formation and acid sphingomyelinase expression were determined by means of immunoblotting. We found that filaggrin expression, occurring as the result of keratinocyte differentiation, significantly inhibits staphylococcal α-toxin-mediated pathogenicity. Furthermore, filaggrin plays a crucial role in protecting cells by mediating the secretion of sphingomyelinase, an enzyme that reduces the number of α-toxin binding sites on the keratinocyte surface. Finally, we determined that sphingomyelinase enzymatic activity directly prevents α-toxin binding and protects keratinocytes against α-toxin-induced cytotoxicity. The current study introduces the novel concept that S aureus α-toxin preferentially targets and destroys filaggrin-deficient keratinocytes. It also provides a mechanism to explain the increased propensity for S aureus-mediated exacerbation of AD skin disease. Copyright © 2012 American Academy of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology. Published by Mosby, Inc. All rights reserved.

  15. Analysis of Life Cycle within Various Strains of Cyanobacteria with a Focus on Internal Regulators & Toxin Production

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cyanobacteria are photosynthetic bacteria that exhibit some similarities to algae and can be found naturally in lakes, streams, ponds, and other surface waters. However, toxin producing cyanobacteria have become an increasing concern as growth rates have been escalating. Neverthe...

  16. Bacillus anthracis-derived edema toxin (ET counter-regulates movement of neutrophils and macromolecules through the endothelial paracellular pathway

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nguyen Chinh

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background A common finding amongst patients with inhalational anthrax is a paucity of polymorphonuclear leukocytes (PMNs in infected tissues in the face of abundant circulating PMNs. A major virulence determinant of anthrax is edema toxin (ET, which is formed by the combination of two proteins produced by the organism, edema factor (EF, which is an adenyl cyclase, and protective antigen (PA. Since cAMP, a product of adenyl cyclase, is known to enhance endothelial barrier integrity, we asked whether ET might decrease extravasation of PMNs into tissues through closure of the paracellular pathway through which PMNs traverse. Results Pretreatment of human microvascular endothelial cell(ECs of the lung (HMVEC-L with ET decreased interleukin (IL-8-driven transendothelial migration (TEM of PMNs with a maximal reduction of nearly 60%. This effect required the presence of both EF and PA. Conversely, ET did not diminish PMN chemotaxis in an EC-free system. Pretreatment of subconfluent HMVEC-Ls decreased transendothelial 14 C-albumin flux by ~ 50% compared to medium controls. Coadministration of ET with either tumor necrosis factor-α or bacterial lipopolysaccharide, each at 100 ng/mL, attenuated the increase of transendothelial 14 C-albumin flux caused by either agent alone. The inhibitory effect of ET on TEM paralleled increases in protein kinase A (PKA activity, but could not be blocked by inhibition of PKA with either H-89 or KT-5720. Finally, we were unable to replicate the ET effect with either forskolin or 3-isobutyl-1-methylxanthine, two agents known to increase cAMP. Conclusions We conclude that ET decreases IL-8-driven TEM of PMNs across HMVEC-L monolayers independent of cAMP/PKA activity.

  17. Standardization of process for increased production of pure and potent tetanus toxin

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chellamani Muniandi

    2013-09-01

    Full Text Available When stationary pot culture was replaced by submerged cultivation of Clostridium tetani, an anaerobic organism, in afermentor using a vibromixer and optimum supply of sterile air to the headspace of the fermentor to flush out the accumulatedgases, a significant increase in the tetanus toxin yield in a short time cultivation (about 5 to 6 days against8 days was noticed. It was found that under optimal conditions of temperature, vibromixing, surface aeration, and analkaline pH favored toxin release. Furthermore, to enhance the production volume, fermentor culture is more suitable.The tetanus toxin was produced with good Limes flocculation (Lf titre and high antigenic purity. Under optimal conditions,the papain digest broth was successfully substituted in place of N.Z Case for the production of pure and potenttetanus toxin. J Microbiol Infect Dis 2013; 3(3: 133-139Key words: Clostridium tetani, modified mueller miller medium, papain digest, limes flocculation

  18. Botulinum toxin in bruxism treatment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Piotr Piech

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available Introduction: Bruxism is defined as abnormal, fixed, unconscious chewing organ function, deviating qualitatively and quantitatively from normal function. Another definition speaks of motor dysfunction in the mouth, characterized by grinding and clenching of the teeth, occurring during sleep. The etiology of this disorder has not been explained until now, but it is believed to be related to localized, mental, nervous and neurotransmitter disorders. Purpose: The aim of the study is to review literature and knowledge about the use of botulinum toxin in the treatment of bruxism. Methods of treatment: The patient reports to the physician usually after a distressing, difficult to locate pain. The basis for proper treatment is to detect parafunctions and to make the patient aware of their existence. Diagnostic symptoms include dentinal lesions, recesses, enamel cracks and abfractive cavities, as well as changes in the mucosal area of the cheeks. Treatment begins with the use of an occlusive therapy to relax muscles, reduce parafunction and relieve pain. In the form of severe pain, NSAIDs are introduced and, if necessary, anxiolytics, sedatives and antidepressants. In the absence of response to the treatment used, botulinum toxin type A injections are used. The dose of the agent depends on the initial muscle tone and the effect of decrease in its activity is maintained for 4 to 6 months. Conclusions: The use of botulinum toxin makes it possible to selectively exclude overactive muscles, which is a great advantage over other techniques. An additional benefit of this therapy is achieved good cosmetic effect, reversible effect and minimal amount of side effects.

  19. Facilitation of risk communication during the anthrax attacks of 2001: the organizational backstory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chess, Caron; Clarke, Lee

    2007-09-01

    The anthrax attacks of 2001 created risk communication problems that cannot be fully understood without appreciating the dynamics among organizations. Case studies of communication in New Jersey, consisting of interviews with a range of participants, found that existing organizational and professional networks facilitated trust among decisionmakers. This interpersonal trust improved communication among agencies and thereby risk communication with the public. For example, "white powder scares" were a problem even in places without contamination. Professionals' trust in each other was vital for responding productively. Conversely, organizational challenges, including conflict among agencies, hindered communication with key audiences. Although centralization and increased control are often seen as the remedy for communicative confusion, they also can quash the improvisational responses needed during crises.

  20. Botulinum toxin: The Midas touch.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shilpa, P S; Kaul, Rachna; Sultana, Nishat; Bhat, Suraksha

    2014-01-01

    Botulinum Toxin (BT) is a natural molecule produced during growth and autolysis of bacterium called Clostridium botulinum. Use of BT for cosmetic purposes has gained popularity over past two decades, and recently, other therapeutic uses of BT has been extensively studied. BT is considered as a minimally invasive agent that can be used in the treatment of various orofacial disorders and improving the quality of life in such patients. The objective of this article is to review the nature, mechanism of action of BT, and its application in various head and neck diseases.

  1. Synthesis and biology of cyclic imine toxins, an emerging class of potent, globally distributed marine toxins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stivala, Craig E; Benoit, Evelyne; Aráoz, Rómulo; Servent, Denis; Novikov, Alexei; Molgó, Jordi; Zakarian, Armen

    2015-03-01

    From a small group of exotic compounds isolated only two decades ago, Cyclic Imine (CI) toxins have become a major class of marine toxins with global distribution. Their distinct chemical structure, biological mechanism of action, and intricate chemistry ensures that CI toxins will continue to be the subject of fascinating fundamental studies in the broad fields of chemistry, chemical biology, and toxicology. The worldwide occurrence of potent CI toxins in marine environments, their accumulation in shellfish, and chemical stability are important considerations in assessing risk factors for human health. This review article aims to provide an account of chemistry, biology, and toxicology of CI toxins from their discovery to the present day.

  2. Removal of cyanobacterial toxins by sediment passage

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gruetzmacher, G.; Boettcher, G.; Chorus, I.; Bartel, H.

    2003-04-01

    Cyanbacterial toxins ("Cyanotoxins") comprise a wide range of toxic substances produced by cyanobacteria ("blue-green algae"). Cyanobacteria occur in surface water word wide and can be found in high concentrations during so-called algal blooms when conditions are favourable (e.g. high nutrient levels, high temperatures). Some cyanobacteria produce hepato- or neurotoxins, of which the hepatotoxic microcystins are the most common in Germany. The WHO guideline value for drinking water was set at 1 μg/L. However, maximum concentrations in surface water can reach 25 mg/L, so that a secure method for toxin elimination has to be found when this water is used as source water for drinking water production. In order to assess if cyanotoxins can be removed by sediment passage the German Federal Environmental Agency (UBA) conducted laboratory- and field scale experiments as well as observations on bank filtration field sites. Laboratory experiments (batch- and column experiments for adsorption and degradation parameters) were conducted in order to vary a multitude of experimental conditions. These experiments were followed by field scale experiments on the UBA's experimental field in Berlin. This plant offers the unique possibility to conduct experiments on the behaviour of various agents - such as harmful substances - during infiltration and bank filtration under well-defined conditions on a field scale, and without releasing these substances to the environment. Finally the development of microcystin concentrations was observed between infiltrating surface water and a drinking water well along a transsecte of observation wells. The results obtained show that infiltration and bank filtration normally seem to be secure treatment methods for source water contaminated by microcystins. However, elimination was shown to be difficult under the following circumstances: - dying cyanobacterial population due to insufficient light and / or nutrients, low temperatures or application of

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Haim Levy

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

  4. Initiating informatics and GIS support for a field investigation of Bioterrorism: The New Jersey anthrax experience

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Skinner Ric

    2003-11-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The investigation of potential exposure to anthrax spores in a Trenton, New Jersey, mail-processing facility required rapid assessment of informatics needs and adaptation of existing informatics tools to new physical and information-processing environments. Because the affected building and its computers were closed down, data to list potentially exposed persons and map building floor plans were unavailable from the primary source. Results Controlling the effects of anthrax contamination required identification and follow-up of potentially exposed persons. Risk of exposure had to be estimated from the geographic relationship between work history and environmental sample sites within the contaminated facility. To assist in establishing geographic relationships, floor plan maps of the postal facility were constructed in ArcView Geographic Information System (GIS software and linked to a database of personnel and visitors using Epi Info and Epi Map 2000. A repository for maintaining the latest versions of various documents was set up using Web page hyperlinks. Conclusions During public health emergencies, such as bioterrorist attacks and disease epidemics, computerized information systems for data management, analysis, and communication may be needed within hours of beginning the investigation. Available sources of data and output requirements of the system may be changed frequently during the course of the investigation. Integrating data from a variety of sources may require entering or importing data from a variety of digital and paper formats. Spatial representation of data is particularly valuable for assessing environmental exposure. Written documents, guidelines, and memos important to the epidemic were frequently revised. In this investigation, a database was operational on the second day and the GIS component during the second week of the investigation.

  5. Vaccine-induced protection against anthrax in cheetah (Acinonyx jubatus) and black rhinoceros (Diceros bicornis).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Turnbull, P C B; Tindall, B W; Coetzee, J D; Conradie, C M; Bull, R L; Lindeque, P M; Huebschle, O J B

    2004-09-03

    Institution of a policy of vaccination in endangered species with a vaccine not previously administered to it cannot be undertaken lightly. This applies even more in the case of cheetah (Acinonyx jubatus) with their unusually monomorphic gene pool and the potential restrictions this places on their immune responses. However, the recently observed mortalities from anthrax in these animals in the Etosha National Park, Namibia, made it imperative to evaluate vaccination. Black rhinoceros (Diceros bicornis), another endangered species in the park, have been vaccinated for over three decades but the effectiveness of this has never been evaluated. Passive protection tests in A/J mice using sera from 12 cheetahs together with enzyme immunoassay indicated that cheetah are able to mount seemingly normal primary and secondary humoral immune responses to the Sterne 34F2 live spore livestock vaccine. Overall protection rates in mice injected with the sera rose and fell in concert with rises and declines in antibody titres, although fine analysis showed that the correlation between titre and protection was complex. Once a high level of protection (96% of mice 1 month after a second booster in the cheetahs) had been achieved, the duration of substantial protection appeared good (60% of the mice 5 months after the second booster). Protection conferred on mice by sera from three of four vaccinated rhino was almost complete, but, obscurely, none of the mice receiving serum from the fourth rhino were protected. Sera from three park lions with naturally acquired high antibody titres, included as controls, also conferred high levels of protection. For the purposes of wildlife management, the conclusions were that vaccination of cheetah with the standard animal anthrax vaccine causes no observable ill effect in the animals and does appear to confer protective immunity. At least one well-separated booster does appear to be desirable. Vaccination of rhino also appears to be justified

  6. A Quantitative Electrochemiluminescence Assay for Clostridium perfringens alpha toxin

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Merrill, Gerald A; Rivera, Victor R; Neal, Dwayne D; Young, Charles; Poli, Mark A

    2006-01-01

    .... Biotinylated antibodies to C. perfringens alpha toxin bound to streptavidin paramagnetic beads specifically immunoadsorbed soluble sample alpha toxin which subsequently selectively immunoadsorbed ruthenium (Ru...

  7. Alternaria toxin-induced resistance in rose plants against rose aphid (Macrosiphum rosivorum): effect of tenuazonic acid.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Fa-zhong; Yang, Bin; Li, Bei-bei; Xiao, Chun

    2015-04-01

    Many different types of toxins are produced by the fungus, Alternaria alternata (Fr.) Keissler. Little is known, however, regarding the influence of these toxins on insects. In this study, we investigated the toxin-induced inhibitory effects of the toxin produced by A. alternata on the rose aphid, Macrosiphum rosivorum, when the toxin was applied to leaves of the rose, Rosa chinensis. The results demonstrated that the purified crude toxin was non-harmful to rose plants and rose aphids, but had an intensive inhibitory effect on the multiplication of aphids. The inhibitory index against rose aphids reached 87.99% when rose plants were sprayed with the toxin solution at a low concentration. Further results from bioassays with aphids and high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) analyses demonstrated that tenuazonic acid (TeA) was one of the most important resistance-related active components in the crude toxin. The content of TeA was 0.1199% in the crude toxin under the HPLC method. Similar to the crude toxin, the inhibitory index of pure TeA reached 83.60% 15 d after the rose plants were sprayed with pure TeA solution at the lower concentration of 0.060 μg/ml, while the contents of residual TeA on the surface and in the inner portion of the rose plants were only 0.04 and 0.00 ng/g fresh weight of TeA-treated rose twigs, respectively, 7 d after the treatment. Our results show that TeA, an active component in the A. alternata toxin, can induce the indirect plant-mediated responses in rose plants to intensively enhance the plant's resistances against rose aphids, and the results are very helpful to understand the plant-mediated interaction between fungi and insects on their shared host plants.

  8. Toxin-Antitoxin Battle in Bacteria

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Cataudella, Ilaria

    This PhD thesis consists of three research projects revolving around the common thread of investigation of the properties and biological functions of Toxin-Antitoxin loci. Toxin-Antitoxin (TA) loci are transcriptionally regulated via an auto-inhibition mechanism called conditional cooperativity, ...

  9. Plant insecticidal toxins in ecological networks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ibanez, Sébastien; Gallet, Christiane; Després, Laurence

    2012-04-01

    Plant secondary metabolites play a key role in plant-insect interactions, whether constitutive or induced, C- or N-based. Anti-herbivore defences against insects can act as repellents, deterrents, growth inhibitors or cause direct mortality. In turn, insects have evolved a variety of strategies to act against plant toxins, e.g., avoidance, excretion, sequestration and degradation of the toxin, eventually leading to a co-evolutionary arms race between insects and plants and to co-diversification. Anti-herbivore defences also negatively impact mutualistic partners, possibly leading to an ecological cost of toxin production. However, in other cases toxins can also be used by plants involved in mutualistic interactions to exclude inadequate partners and to modify the cost/benefit ratio of mutualism to their advantage. When considering the whole community, toxins have an effect at many trophic levels. Aposematic insects sequester toxins to defend themselves against predators. Depending on the ecological context, toxins can either increase insects' vulnerability to parasitoids and entomopathogens or protect them, eventually leading to self-medication. We conclude that studying the community-level impacts of plant toxins can provide new insights into the synthesis between community and evolutionary ecology.

  10. Plant Insecticidal Toxins in Ecological Networks

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sébastien Ibanez

    2012-04-01

    Full Text Available Plant secondary metabolites play a key role in plant-insect interactions, whether constitutive or induced, C- or N-based. Anti-herbivore defences against insects can act as repellents, deterrents, growth inhibitors or cause direct mortality. In turn, insects have evolved a variety of strategies to act against plant toxins, e.g., avoidance, excretion, sequestration and degradation of the toxin, eventually leading to a co-evolutionary arms race between insects and plants and to co-diversification. Anti-herbivore defences also negatively impact mutualistic partners, possibly leading to an ecological cost of toxin production. However, in other cases toxins can also be used by plants involved in mutualistic interactions to exclude inadequate partners and to modify the cost/benefit ratio of mutualism to their advantage. When considering the whole community, toxins have an effect at many trophic levels. Aposematic insects sequester toxins to defend themselves against predators. Depending on the ecological context, toxins can either increase insects’ vulnerability to parasitoids and entomopathogens or protect them, eventually leading to self-medication. We conclude that studying the community-level impacts of plant toxins can provide new insights into the synthesis between community and evolutionary ecology.

  11. Stealth and mimicry by deadly bacterial toxins

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Yates, S.P.; Jørgensen, Rene; Andersen, Gregers Rom

    2006-01-01

    Diphtheria toxin and exotoxin A are well-characterized members of the ADP-ribosyltransferase toxin family that serve as virulence factors in the pathogenic bacteria, Corynebacterium diphtheriae and Pseudomonas aeruginosa.  New high-resolution structural data of the Michaelis complex...

  12. Brown spider dermonecrotic toxin directly induces nephrotoxicity

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Chaim, Olga Meiri; Sade, Youssef Bacila; Bertoni da Silveira, Rafael; Toma, Leny; Kalapothakis, Evanguedes; Chavez-Olortegui, Carlos; Mangili, Oldemir Carlos; Gremski, Waldemiro; Dietrich, Carl Peter von; Nader, Helena B.; Sanches Veiga, Silvio

    2006-01-01

    Brown spider (Loxosceles genus) venom can induce dermonecrotic lesions at the bite site and systemic manifestations including fever, vomiting, convulsions, disseminated intravascular coagulation, hemolytic anemia and acute renal failure. The venom is composed of a mixture of proteins with several molecules biochemically and biologically well characterized. The mechanism by which the venom induces renal damage is unknown. By using mice exposed to Loxosceles intermedia recombinant dermonecrotic toxin (LiRecDT), we showed direct induction of renal injuries. Microscopic analysis of renal biopsies from dermonecrotic toxin-treated mice showed histological alterations including glomerular edema and tubular necrosis. Hyalinization of tubules with deposition of proteinaceous material in the tubule lumen, tubule epithelial cell vacuoles, tubular edema and epithelial cell lysis was also observed. Leukocytic infiltration was neither observed in the glomerulus nor the tubules. Renal vessels showed no sign of inflammatory response. Additionally, biochemical analyses showed such toxin-induced changes in renal function as urine alkalinization, hematuria and azotemia with elevation of blood urea nitrogen levels. Immunofluorescence with dermonecrotic toxin antibodies and confocal microscopy analysis showed deposition and direct binding of this toxin to renal intrinsic structures. By immunoblotting with a hyperimmune dermonecrotic toxin antiserum on renal lysates from toxin-treated mice, we detected a positive signal at the region of 33-35 kDa, which strengthens the idea that renal failure is directly induced by dermonecrotic toxin. Immunofluorescence reaction with dermonecrotic toxin antibodies revealed deposition and binding of this toxin directly in MDCK epithelial cells in culture. Similarly, dermonecrotic toxin treatment caused morphological alterations of MDCK cells including cytoplasmic vacuoles, blebs, evoked impaired spreading and detached cells from each other and from

  13. Interplay between toxin transport and flotillin localization

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pust, Sascha; Dyve, Anne Berit; Torgersen, Maria L

    2010-01-01

    The flotillin proteins are localized in lipid domains at the plasma membrane as well as in intracellular compartments. In the present study, we examined the importance of flotillin-1 and flotillin-2 for the uptake and transport of the bacterial Shiga toxin (Stx) and the plant toxin ricin and we...... for flotillin-1 or -2. However, the Golgi-dependent sulfation of both toxins was significantly reduced in flotillin knockdown cells. Interestingly, when the transport of ricin to the ER was investigated, we obtained an increased mannosylation of ricin in flotillin-1 and flotillin-2 knockdown cells. The toxicity...... of both toxins was twofold increased in flotillin-depleted cells. Since BFA (Brefeldin A) inhibits the toxicity even in flotillin knockdown cells, the retrograde toxin transport is apparently still Golgi-dependent. Thus, flotillin proteins regulate and facilitate the retrograde transport of Stx and ricin....

  14. Crystallization of isoelectrically homogeneous cholera toxin

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Spangler, B.D.; Westbrook, E.M.

    1989-01-01

    Past difficulty in growing good crystals of cholera toxin has prevented the study of the crystal structure of this important protein. The authors have determined that failure of cholera toxin to crystallize well has been due to its heterogeneity. They have now succeeded in overcoming the problem by isolating a single isoelectric variant of this oligomeric protein (one A subunit and five B subunits). Cholera toxin purified by their procedure readily forms large single crystals. The crystal form has been described previously. They have recorded data from native crystals of cholera toxin to 3.0-angstrom resolution with our electronic area detectors. With these data, they have found the orientation of a 5-fold symmetry axis within these crystals, perpendicular to the screw dyad of the crystal. They are now determining the crystal structure of cholera toxin by a combination of multiple heavy-atom isomorphous replacement and density modification techniques, making use of rotational 5-fold averaging of the B subunits

  15. Immunotoxins: The Role of the Toxin

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David FitzGerald

    2013-08-01

    Full Text Available Immunotoxins are antibody-toxin bifunctional molecules that rely on intracellular toxin action to kill target cells. Target specificity is determined via the binding attributes of the chosen antibody. Mostly, but not exclusively, immunotoxins are purpose-built to kill cancer cells as part of novel treatment approaches. Other applications for immunotoxins include immune regulation and the treatment of viral or parasitic diseases. Here we discuss the utility of protein toxins, of both bacterial and plant origin, joined to antibodies for targeting cancer cells. Finally, while clinical goals are focused on the development of novel cancer treatments, much has been learned about toxin action and intracellular pathways. Thus toxins are considered both medicines for treating human disease and probes of cellular function.

  16. Comparison of the Structural Stability and Dynamic Properties of Recombinant Anthrax Protective Antigen and its 2-Fluorohistidine Labeled Analogue

    OpenAIRE

    Hu, Lei; Joshi, Sangeeta B.; Andra, Kiran K.; Thakkar, Santosh V.; Volkin, David B.; Bann, James G.; Middaugh, C. Russell

    2012-01-01

    Protective antigen (PA) is the primary protein antigenic component of both the currently used anthrax vaccine and related recombinant vaccines under development. An analogue of recombinant PA (2-FHis rPA) has been recently shown to block the key steps of pore formation in the process of inducing cytotoxicity in cells, and thus can potentially be used as an antitoxin or a vaccine. This rPA analogue was produced by fermentation to incorporate the unnatural amino acid 2-fluorohistidine (2-FHis)....

  17. Possible importance of algal toxins in the Salton Sea, California

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reifel, K.M.; McCoy, M.P.; Rocke, T.E.; Tiffany, M.A.; Hurlbert, S.H.; Faulkner, D.J.

    2002-01-01

    In response to wildlife mortality including unexplained eared grebe (Podiceps nigricollis) die-off events in 1992 and 1994 and other mortality events including large fish kills, a survey was conducted for the presence of algal toxins in the Salton Sea. Goals of this survey were to determine if and when algal toxins are present in the Salton Sea and to describe the phytoplankton composition during those times. A total of 29 samples was collected for toxicity analysis from both nearshore and midlake sites visited biweekly from January to December 1999. Dinoflagellates and diatoms dominated most samples, but some were dominated by a prymnesiophyte (Pleurochrysis pseudoroscoffensis) or a raphidophyte (Chattonella marina). Several types of blooms were observed and sampled. The dinoflagellate Gyrodinium uncatenum formed an extensive, dense (up to 310 000 cells ml−1) and long-lasting bloom during the winter in 1999. A coccolithophorid, Pleurochrysis pseudoroscoffensis, occurred at high densities in surface films and nearshore areas during the spring and summer of 1999. These surface films also contained high densities of one or two other species (an unidentified scrippsielloid, Heterocapsa niei, Chattonella marina). Localized blooms were also observed in the Salton Sea. An unknown small dinoflagellate reached high densities (110 000 cells ml−1) inside Varner Harbor, and an unidentified species of Gymnodinium formed a dense (270 000 cells ml−1) band along part of the southern shoreline during the summer. Three species known to produce toxins in other systems were found. Protoceratium reticulatum (=Gonyaulax grindleyi) and Chattonella marina were found in several samples taken during summer months, and Prorocentrum minimum was found in low densities in several samples. Extracts of most samples, including those containing known toxic species, showed a low level (Salton Sea, no evidence gathered in this study suggests that algal toxins are present

  18. 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.

  19. Occurrence and elimination of cyanobacterial toxins in drinking water treatment plants

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hoeger, Stefan J.; Hitzfeld, Bettina C.; Dietrich, Daniel R.

    2005-01-01

    Toxin-producing cyanobacteria (blue-green algae) are abundant in surface waters used as drinking water resources. The toxicity of one group of these toxins, the microcystins, and their presence in surface waters used for drinking water production has prompted the World Health Organization (WHO) to publish a provisional guideline value of 1.0 μg microcystin (MC)-LR/l drinking water. To verify the efficiency of two different water treatment systems with respect to reduction of cyanobacterial toxins, the concentrations of MC in water samples from surface waters and their associated water treatment plants in Switzerland and Germany were investigated. Toxin concentrations in samples from drinking water treatment plants ranged from below 1.0 μg MC-LR equiv./l to more than 8.0 μg/l in raw water and were distinctly below 1.0 μg/l after treatment. In addition, data to the worldwide occurrence of cyanobacteria in raw and final water of water works and the corresponding guidelines for cyanobacterial toxins in drinking water worldwide are summarized

  20. Immunoassay for Capsular Antigen of Bacillus anthracis Enables Rapid Diagnosis in a Rabbit Model of Inhalational Anthrax.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marcellene A Gates-Hollingsworth

    Full Text Available Inhalational anthrax is a serious biothreat. Effective antibiotic treatment of inhalational anthrax requires early diagnosis; the further the disease has progressed, the less the likelihood for cure. Current means for diagnosis such as blood culture require several days to a result and require advanced laboratory infrastructure. An alternative approach to diagnosis is detection of a Bacillus anthracis antigen that is shed into blood and can be detected by rapid immunoassay. The goal of the study was to evaluate detection of poly-γ-D-glutamic acid (PGA, the capsular antigen of B. anthracis, as a biomarker surrogate for blood culture in a rabbit model of inhalational anthrax. The mean time to a positive blood culture was 26 ± 5.7 h (mean ± standard deviation, whereas the mean time to a positive ELISA was 22 ± 4.2 h; P = 0.005 in comparison with blood culture. A lateral flow immunoassay was constructed for detection of PGA in plasma at concentrations of less than 1 ng PGA/ml. Use of the lateral flow immunoassay for detection of PGA in the rabbit model found that antigen was detected somewhat earlier than the earliest time point at which the blood culture became positive. The low cost, ease of use, and rapid time to result of the lateral flow immunoassay format make an immunoassay for PGA a viable surrogate for blood culture for detection of infection in individuals who have a likelihood of exposure to B. anthracis.

  1. Converting a Staphylococcus aureus toxin into effective cyclic pseudopeptide antibiotics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Solecki, Olivia; Mosbah, Amor; Baudy Floc'h, Michèle; Felden, Brice

    2015-03-19

    Staphylococcus aureus produces peptide toxins that it uses to respond to environmental cues. We previously characterized PepA1, a peptide toxin from S. aureus, that induces lytic cell death of both bacterial and host cells. That led us to suggest that PepA1 has an antibacterial activity. Here, we demonstrate that exogenously provided PepA1 has activity against both Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria. We also see that PepA1 is significantly hemolytic, thus limiting its use as an antibacterial agent. To overcome these limitations, we converted PepA1 into nonhemolytic derivatives. Our most promising derivative is a cyclic heptapseudopeptide with inconsequential toxicity to human cells, enhanced stability in human sera, and sharp antibacterial activity. Mechanistically, linear and helical PepA1 derivatives form pores at the bacterial and erythrocyte surfaces, while the cyclic peptide induces bacterial envelope reorganization, with insignificant action on the erythrocytes. Our work demonstrates that bacterial toxins might be an attractive starting point for antibacterial drug development. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  2. Challenging the roles of CD44 and lipolysis stimulated lipoprotein receptor in conveying Clostridium perfringens iota toxin cytotoxicity in breast cancer.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fagan-Solis, Katerina D; Reaves, Denise K; Rangel, M Cristina; Popoff, Michel R; Stiles, Bradley G; Fleming, Jodie M

    2014-07-02

    Translational exploration of bacterial toxins has come to the forefront of research given their potential as a chemotherapeutic tool. Studies in select tissues have demonstrated that Clostridium perfringens iota toxin binds to CD44 and lipolysis stimulated lipoprotein receptor (LSR) cell-surface proteins. We recently demonstrated that LSR expression correlates with estrogen receptor positive breast cancers and that LSR signaling directs aggressive, tumor-initiating cell behaviors. Herein, we identify the mechanisms of iota toxin cytotoxicity in a tissue-specific, breast cancer model with the ultimate goal of laying the foundation for using iota toxin as a targeted breast cancer therapy. In vitro model systems were used to determine the cytotoxic effect of iota toxin on breast cancer intrinsic subtypes. The use of overexpression and knockdown technologies confirmed the roles of LSR and CD44 in regulating iota toxin endocytosis and induction of cell death. Lastly, cytotoxicity assays were used to demonstrate the effect of iota toxin on a validated set of tamoxifen resistant breast cancer cell lines. Treatment of 14 breast cancer cell lines revealed that LSR+/CD44- lines were highly sensitive, LSR+/CD44+ lines were slightly sensitive, and LSR-/CD44+ lines were resistant to iota cytotoxicity. Reduction in LSR expression resulted in a significant decrease in toxin sensitivity; however, overexpression of CD44 conveyed toxin resistance. CD44 overexpression was correlated with decreased toxin-stimulated lysosome formation and decreased cytosolic levels of iota toxin. These findings indicated that expression of CD44 drives iota toxin resistance through inhibition of endocytosis in breast cancer cells, a role not previously defined for CD44. Moreover, tamoxifen-resistant breast cancer cells exhibited robust expression of LSR and were highly sensitive to iota-induced cytotoxicity. Collectively, these data are the first to show that iota toxin has the potential to be an

  3. Cyanobacterial toxins: risk management for health protection

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Codd, Geoffrey A.; Morrison, Louise F.; Metcalf, James S.

    2005-01-01

    This paper reviews the occurrence and properties of cyanobacterial toxins, with reference to the recognition and management of the human health risks which they may present. Mass populations of toxin-producing cyanobacteria in natural and controlled waterbodies include blooms and scums of planktonic species, and mats and biofilms of benthic species. Toxic cyanobacterial populations have been reported in freshwaters in over 45 countries, and in numerous brackish, coastal, and marine environments. The principal toxigenic genera are listed. Known sources of the families of cyanobacterial toxins (hepato-, neuro-, and cytotoxins, irritants, and gastrointestinal toxins) are briefly discussed. Key procedures in the risk management of cyanobacterial toxins and cells are reviewed, including derivations (where sufficient data are available) of tolerable daily intakes (TDIs) and guideline values (GVs) with reference to the toxins in drinking water, and guideline levels for toxigenic cyanobacteria in bathing waters. Uncertainties and some gaps in knowledge are also discussed, including the importance of exposure media (animal and plant foods), in addition to potable and recreational waters. Finally, we present an outline of steps to develop and implement risk management strategies for cyanobacterial cells and toxins in waterbodies, with recent applications and the integration of Hazard Assessment Critical Control Point (HACCP) principles

  4. Computational Studies of Snake Venom Toxins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ojeda, Paola G; Ramírez, David; Alzate-Morales, Jans; Caballero, Julio; Kaas, Quentin; González, Wendy

    2017-12-22

    Most snake venom toxins are proteins, and participate to envenomation through a diverse array of bioactivities, such as bleeding, inflammation, and pain, cytotoxic, cardiotoxic or neurotoxic effects. The venom of a single snake species contains hundreds of toxins, and the venoms of the 725 species of venomous snakes represent a large pool of potentially bioactive proteins. Despite considerable discovery efforts, most of the snake venom toxins are still uncharacterized. Modern bioinformatics tools have been recently developed to mine snake venoms, helping focus experimental research on the most potentially interesting toxins. Some computational techniques predict toxin molecular targets, and the binding mode to these targets. This review gives an overview of current knowledge on the ~2200 sequences, and more than 400 three-dimensional structures of snake toxins deposited in public repositories, as well as of molecular modeling studies of the interaction between these toxins and their molecular targets. We also describe how modern bioinformatics have been used to study the snake venom protein phospholipase A2, the small basic myotoxin Crotamine, and the three-finger peptide Mambalgin.

  5. Computational Studies of Snake Venom Toxins

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Paola G. Ojeda

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available Most snake venom toxins are proteins, and participate to envenomation through a diverse array of bioactivities, such as bleeding, inflammation, and pain, cytotoxic, cardiotoxic or neurotoxic effects. The venom of a single snake species contains hundreds of toxins, and the venoms of the 725 species of venomous snakes represent a large pool of potentially bioactive proteins. Despite considerable discovery efforts, most of the snake venom toxins are still uncharacterized. Modern bioinformatics tools have been recently developed to mine snake venoms, helping focus experimental research on the most potentially interesting toxins. Some computational techniques predict toxin molecular targets, and the binding mode to these targets. This review gives an overview of current knowledge on the ~2200 sequences, and more than 400 three-dimensional structures of snake toxins deposited in public repositories, as well as of molecular modeling studies of the interaction between these toxins and their molecular targets. We also describe how modern bioinformatics have been used to study the snake venom protein phospholipase A2, the small basic myotoxin Crotamine, and the three-finger peptide Mambalgin.

  6. Botulinum toxin for the treatment of bruxism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tinastepe, Neslihan; Küçük, Burcu Bal; Oral, Koray

    2015-10-01

    Botulinum toxin, the most potent biological toxin, has been shown to be effective for a variety of disorders in several medical conditions, when used both therapeutically and cosmetically. In recent years, there has been a rising trend in the use of this pharmacological agent to control bruxing activity, despite its reported adverse effects. The aim of this review was to provide a brief overview to clarify the underlying essential ideas for the use of botulinum toxin in bruxism based on available scientific papers. An electronic literature search was performed to identify publications related to botulinum toxin and its use for bruxism in PubMed. Hand searching of relevant articles was also made to identify additional studies. Of the eleven identified studies, only two were randomized controlled trials, compared with the effectiveness of botulinum toxins on the reduction in the frequency of bruxism events and myofascial pain after injection. The authors of these studies concluded that botulinum toxin could be used as an effective treatment for reducing nocturnal bruxism and myofascial pain in patients with bruxism. Evidence-based research was limited on this topic. More randomized controlled studies are needed to confirm that botulinum toxin is safe and reliable for routine clinical use in bruxism.

  7. Engineering toxins for 21st century therapies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chaddock, John A; Acharya, K Ravi

    2011-04-01

    'Engineering Toxins for 21st Century Therapies' (9-10 September 2010) was part of the Royal Society International Seminar series held at the Kavli International Centre, UK. Participants were assembled from a range of disciplines (academic, industry, regulatory, public health) to discuss the future potential of toxin-based therapies. The meeting explored how the current structural and mechanistic knowledge of toxins could be used to engineer future toxin-based therapies. To date, significant progress has been made in the design of novel recombinant biologics based on domains of natural toxins, engineered to exhibit advantageous properties. The meeting concluded, firstly that future product development vitally required the appropriate combination of creativity and innovation that can come from the academic, biotechnology and pharma sectors. Second, that continued investigation into understanding the basic science of the toxins and their targets was essential in order to develop new opportunities for the existing products and to create new products with enhanced properties. Finally, it was concluded that the clinical potential for development of novel biologics based on toxin domains was evident. © 2011 The Authors Journal compilation © 2011 FEBS.

  8. Role of Botulinum Toxin in Depression.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parsaik, Ajay K; Mascarenhas, Sonia S; Hashmi, Aqeel; Prokop, Larry J; John, Vineeth; Okusaga, Olaoluwa; Singh, Balwinder

    2016-03-01

    The goal of this review was to consolidate the evidence concerning the efficacy of botulinum toxin type A (onabotulinumtoxinA) in depression. We searched MEDLINE, EMBASE, Cochrane, and Scopus through May 5, 2014, for studies evaluating the efficacy of botulinum toxin A in depression. Only randomized controlled trials were included in the meta-analysis. A pooled mean difference in primary depression score, and pooled odds ratio for response and remission rate with 95% confidence interval (CI) were estimated using the random-effects model. Heterogeneity was assessed using Cochran Q test and χ statistic. Of the 639 articles that were initially retrieved, 5 studies enrolling 194 subjects (age 49±9.6 y) were included in the systematic review, and 3 randomized controlled trials enrolling 134 subjects were included in the meta-analysis. The meta-analysis showed a significant decrease in mean primary depression scores among patients who received botulinum toxin A compared with placebo (-9.80; 95% CI, -12.90 to -6.69) with modest heterogeneity between the studies (Cochran Q test, χ=70). Response and remission rates were 8.3 and 4.6 times higher, respectively, among patients receiving botulinum toxin A compared with placebo, with no heterogeneity between the studies. The 2 studies excluded from the meta-analysis also found a significant decrease in primary depression scores in patients after receiving botulinum toxin A. A few subjects had minor side effects, which were similar between the groups receiving botulinum toxin and those receiving placebo. This study suggests that botulinum toxin A can produce significant improvement in depressive symptoms and is a safe adjunctive treatment for patients receiving pharmacotherapy for depression. Future trials are needed to evaluate the antidepressant effect per se of botulinum toxin A and to further elucidate the underlying antidepressant mechanism of botulinum toxin A.

  9. Botulinum toxin: yesterday, today, tomorrow

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. R. Artemenko

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Botulinum toxin (BoNT is a bacterial neurotoxin presented with seven serotypes that inhibit neurotransmitter release from nerve endings. The serotypes of BoNT are antigenically dissimilar, act via different, but interconnected mechanisms, and are not interchangeable. The activity of BoNT is associated with impaired neuroexocytosis occurring in several steps: from the binding of BoNT to its specific receptor on the axon terminal membrane to the proteolytic enzymatic cleavage of SNARE substrate. The effect of BoNT is considered to be restricted to the peripheral nervous system, but when given in particularly high doses, it has been recently shown to affect individual brain structures. In addition, by modulating peripheral afferentation, BoNT may influence the excitability of central neuronal structures at both spinal and cortical levels. Only BoNT serotypes A and B are used in clinical practice and aesthetic medicine. The type A has gained the widest acceptance as a therapeutic agent for more than 100 abnormalities manifesting themselves as muscular hyperactivity, hyperfunction of endocrine gland, and chronic pain. The effect of BoNT preparations shows itself 2-5 days after injection, lasts 3 months or more, and gradually decreases with as a result of pharmacokinetic and intracellular reparative processes. Biotechnology advances and potentialities allow purposefully modification of the protein molecular structure of BoNT, which expands the use and efficiency of performed therapy with neurotoxins. Recombinant technologies provide a combination of major therapeutic properties of each used BoNT serotype and expand indications for recombinant chimeric toxins.

  10. Toxin production in Dinophysis and the fate of these toxins in marine mussels

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nielsen, Lasse Tor

    Diarrhetic shellfish poisoning (DSP) poses a considerable threat to food safety and to the economy of shellfish fishers and farmers in many parts of the world. Thousands of DSP intoxications have been reported, and bivalve harvesting can sometimes be closed down several months in a row. The toxins....... acuta. I grew the two species in laboratory cultures at different irradiances (7-130 μmol photons m-2 s-1) and with different food availability. The results showed that irradiance had no effects on toxin profiles, and only limited effects of the cellular toxin contents. Rather, toxin production rates...... are primarily produced by the marine mixotrophic dinoflagellates Dinophysis spp., known to occur in most parts of the world. Dinophysis can, along with other planktonic organisms, be consumed by filter-feeding bivalves, and thus the toxins can accumulate. Dinophysis can produce the three toxin groups, okadaic...

  11. Nanomechanical detection of cholera toxin using microcantilevers functionalized with ganglioside nanodiscs

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Tark, Soo-Hyun; Dravid, Vinayak P [Department of Materials Science and Engineering, Northwestern University, Evanston, IL 60208 (United States); Das, Aditi; Sligar, Stephen, E-mail: s-sligar@illinois.edu, E-mail: v-dravid@northwestern.edu [Department of Biochemistry and Chemistry, Beckman Institute for Advanced Science and Technology, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Urbana, IL 61801 (United States)

    2010-10-29

    The label-free detection of cholera toxin is demonstrated using microcantilevers functionalized with ganglioside nanodiscs. The cholera toxin molecules bind specifically to the active membrane protein encased in nanodiscs, nanoscale lipid bilayers surrounded by an amphipathic protein belt, immobilized on the cantilever surface. The specific molecular binding results in cantilever deflection via the formation of a surface stress-induced bending moment. The nanomechanical cantilever response is quantitatively monitored by optical interference. The consistent and reproducible nanomechanical detection of cholera toxin in nanomolar range concentrations is demonstrated. The results validated with such a model system suggest that the combination of a microcantilever platform with receptor nanodiscs is a promising approach for monitoring invasive pathogens and other types of biomolecular detection relevant to drug discovery.

  12. Nanomechanical detection of cholera toxin using microcantilevers functionalized with ganglioside nanodiscs

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Tark, Soo-Hyun; Dravid, Vinayak P; Das, Aditi; Sligar, Stephen

    2010-01-01

    The label-free detection of cholera toxin is demonstrated using microcantilevers functionalized with ganglioside nanodiscs. The cholera toxin molecules bind specifically to the active membrane protein encased in nanodiscs, nanoscale lipid bilayers surrounded by an amphipathic protein belt, immobilized on the cantilever surface. The specific molecular binding results in cantilever deflection via the formation of a surface stress-induced bending moment. The nanomechanical cantilever response is quantitatively monitored by optical interference. The consistent and reproducible nanomechanical detection of cholera toxin in nanomolar range concentrations is demonstrated. The results validated with such a model system suggest that the combination of a microcantilever platform with receptor nanodiscs is a promising approach for monitoring invasive pathogens and other types of biomolecular detection relevant to drug discovery.

  13. Diversification of a single ancestral gene into a successful toxin superfamily in highly venomous Australian funnel-web spiders.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pineda, Sandy S; Sollod, Brianna L; Wilson, David; Darling, Aaron; Sunagar, Kartik; Undheim, Eivind A B; Kely, Laurence; Antunes, Agostinho; Fry, Bryan G; King, Glenn F

    2014-03-05

    Spiders have evolved pharmacologically complex venoms that serve to rapidly subdue prey and deter predators. The major toxic factors in most spider venoms are small, disulfide-rich peptides. While there is abundant evidence that snake venoms evolved by recruitment of genes encoding normal body proteins followed by extensive gene duplication accompanied by explosive structural and functional diversification, the evolutionary trajectory of spider-venom peptides is less clear. Here we present evidence of a spider-toxin superfamily encoding a high degree of sequence and functional diversity that has evolved via accelerated duplication and diversification of a single ancestral gene. The peptides within this toxin superfamily are translated as prepropeptides that are posttranslationally processed to yield the mature toxin. The N-terminal signal sequence, as well as the protease recognition site at the junction of the propeptide and mature toxin are conserved, whereas the remainder of the propeptide and mature toxin sequences are variable. All toxin transcripts within this superfamily exhibit a striking cysteine codon bias. We show that different pharmacological classes of toxins within this peptide superfamily evolved under different evolutionary selection pressures. Overall, this study reinforces the hypothesis that spiders use a combinatorial peptide library strategy to evolve a complex cocktail of peptide toxins that target neuronal receptors and ion channels in prey and predators. We show that the ω-hexatoxins that target insect voltage-gated calcium channels evolved under the influence of positive Darwinian selection in an episodic fashion, whereas the κ-hexatoxins that target insect calcium-activated potassium channels appear to be under negative selection. A majority of the diversifying sites in the ω-hexatoxins are concentrated on the molecular surface of the toxins, thereby facilitating neofunctionalisation leading to new toxin pharmacology.

  14. Modular organization of α-toxins from scorpion venom mirrors domain structure of their targets, sodium channels.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chugunov, Anton O; Koromyslova, Anna D; Berkut, Antonina A; Peigneur, Steve; Tytgat, Jan; Polyansky, Anton A; Pentkovsky, Vladimir M; Vassilevski, Alexander A; Grishin, Eugene V; Efremov, Roman G

    2013-06-28

    To gain success in the evolutionary "arms race," venomous animals such as scorpions produce diverse neurotoxins selected to hit targets in the nervous system of prey. Scorpion α-toxins affect insect and/or mammalian voltage-gated sodium channels (Na(v)s) and thereby modify the excitability of muscle and nerve cells. Although more than 100 α-toxins are known and a number of them have been studied into detail, the molecular mechanism of their interaction with Na(v)s is still poorly understood. Here, we employ extensive molecular dynamics simulations and spatial mapping of hydrophobic/hydrophilic properties distributed over the molecular surface of α-toxins. It is revealed that despite the small size and relatively rigid structure, these toxins possess modular organization from structural, functional, and evolutionary perspectives. The more conserved and rigid "core module" is supplemented with the "specificity module" (SM) that is comparatively flexible and variable and determines the taxon (mammal versus insect) specificity of α-toxin activity. We further show that SMs in mammal toxins are more flexible and hydrophilic than in insect toxins. Concomitant sequence-based analysis of the extracellular loops of Na(v)s suggests that α-toxins recognize the channels using both modules. We propose that the core module binds to the voltage-sensing domain IV, whereas the more versatile SM interacts with the pore domain in repeat I of Na(v)s. These findings corroborate and expand the hypothesis on different functional epitopes of toxins that has been reported previously. In effect, we propose that the modular structure in toxins evolved to match the domain architecture of Na(v)s.

  15. Conditional Toxin Splicing Using a Split Intein System.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alford, Spencer C; O'Sullivan, Connor; Howard, Perry L

    2017-01-01

    Protein toxin splicing mediated by split inteins can be used as a strategy for conditional cell ablation. The approach requires artificial fragmentation of a potent protein toxin and tethering each toxin fragment to a split intein fragment. The toxin-intein fragments are, in turn, fused to dimerization domains, such that addition of a dimerizing agent reconstitutes the split intein. These chimeric toxin-intein fusions remain nontoxic until the dimerizer is added, resulting in activation of intein splicing and ligation of toxin fragments to form an active toxin. Considerations for the engineering and implementation of conditional toxin splicing (CTS) systems include: choice of toxin split site, split site (extein) chemistry, and temperature sensitivity. The following method outlines design criteria and implementation notes for CTS using a previously engineered system for splicing a toxin called sarcin, as well as for developing alternative CTS systems.

  16. Cyanobacteria toxins in the Salton Sea.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carmichael, Wayne W; Li, RenHui

    2006-04-19

    The Salton Sea (SS) is the largest inland body of water in California: surface area 980 km2, volume 7.3 million acre-feet, 58 km long, 14-22 km wide, maximum depth 15 m. Located in the southeastern Sonoran desert of California, it is 85 m below sea level at its lowest point. It was formed between 1905 and 1907 from heavy river flows of the Colorado River. Since its formation, it has attracted both people and wildlife, including flocks of migratory birds that have made the Salton Sea a critical stopover on the Pacific flyway. Over the past 15 years wintering populations of eared grebe (Podiceps nigricollis) at the Salton Sea, have experienced over 200,000 mortalities. The cause of these large die-offs remains unknown. The unique environmental conditions of the Salton Sea, including salinities from brackish freshwater at river inlets to hypersaline conditions, extreme daily summer temperatures (>38 degrees C), and high nutrient loading from rivers and agricultural drainage favor eutrophic conditions that encourage algal blooms throughout the year. A significant component of these algal blooms are the prokaryotic group - the Cyanophyta or blue-green algae (also called Cyanobacteria). Since many Cyanobacteria produce toxins (the cyanotoxins) it became important to evaluate their presence and to determine if they are a contributing factor in eared-grebe mortalities at the Salton Sea. From November 1999 to April 2001, 247 water and sediment samples were received for phytoplankton identification and cyanotoxin analyses. Immunoassay (ELISA) screening of these samples found that eighty five percent of all water samples contained low but detectable levels of the potent cyclic peptide liver toxin called microcystins. Isolation and identification of cyanobacteria isolates showed that the picoplanktonic Synechococcus and the benthic filamentous Oscillatoria were dominant. Both organisms were found to produce microcystins dominated by microcystin-LR and YR. A laboratory strain

  17. NNDSS - Table II. Shiga toxin to Shigellosis

    Data.gov (United States)

    U.S. Department of Health & Human Services — NNDSS - Table II. Shiga toxin to Shigellosis - 2015. In this Table, provisional cases of selected notifiable diseases (≥1,000 cases reported during the preceding...

  18. Toxins and antimicrobial peptides: interactions with membranes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schlamadinger, Diana E.; Gable, Jonathan E.; Kim, Judy E.

    2009-08-01

    The innate immunity to pathogenic invasion of organisms in the plant and animal kingdoms relies upon cationic antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) as the first line of defense. In addition to these natural peptide antibiotics, similar cationic peptides, such as the bee venom toxin melittin, act as nonspecific toxins. Molecular details of AMP and peptide toxin action are not known, but the universal function of these peptides to disrupt cell membranes of pathogenic bacteria (AMPs) or a diverse set of eukaryotes and prokaryotes (melittin) is widely accepted. Here, we have utilized spectroscopic techniques to elucidate peptide-membrane interactions of alpha-helical human and mouse AMPs of the cathelicidin family as well as the peptide toxin melittin. The activity of these natural peptides and their engineered analogs was studied on eukaryotic and prokaryotic membrane mimics consisting of resistant pathogens.

  19. Bacterial toxins as pathogen weapons against phagocytes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ana edo Vale

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available Bacterial toxins are virulence factors that manipulate host cell functions and take over the control of vital processes of living organisms to favour microbial infection. Some toxins directly target innate immune cells, thereby annihilating a major branch of the host immune response. In this review we will focus on bacterial toxins that act from the extracellular milieu and hinder the function of macrophages and neutrophils. In particular, we will concentrate on toxins from Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria that manipulate cell signalling or induce cell death by either imposing direct damage to the host cells cytoplasmic membrane or enzymatically modifying key eukaryotic targets. Outcomes regarding pathogen dissemination, host damage and disease progression will be discussed.

  20. How Parkinsonian Toxins Dysregulate the Autophagy Machinery

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ruben K. Dagda

    2013-11-01

    Full Text Available Since their discovery, Parkinsonian toxins (6-hydroxydopamine, MPP+, paraquat, and rotenone have been widely employed as in vivo and in vitro chemical models of Parkinson’s disease (PD. Alterations in mitochondrial homeostasis, protein quality control pathways, and more recently, autophagy/mitophagy have been implicated in neurotoxin models of PD. Here, we highlight the molecular mechanisms by which different PD toxins dysregulate autophagy/mitophagy and how alterations of these pathways play beneficial or detrimental roles in dopamine neurons. The convergent and divergent effects of PD toxins on mitochondrial function and autophagy/mitophagy are also discussed in this review. Furthermore, we propose new diagnostic tools and discuss how pharmacological modulators of autophagy/mitophagy can be developed as disease-modifying treatments for PD. Finally, we discuss the critical need to identify endogenous and synthetic forms of PD toxins and develop efficient health preventive programs to mitigate the risk of developing PD.

  1. Botulinum toxin type a for chronic migraine.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ashkenazi, Avi

    2010-03-01

    Chronic migraine (CM) is the leading cause of chronic daily headache, a common and debilitating headache syndrome. The management of CM patients is challenging, with only limited benefit from available oral preventive medications. Botulinum neurotoxin (BoNT) has been used extensively to treat disorders associated with increased muscle tone. More recent scientific data support an analgesic effect of the toxin. The pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic profiles of BoNT make it an appealing candidate for migraine prevention. Results from older clinical trials on the efficacy of the toxin in CM were inconclusive. However, recent trials using more stringent inclusion criteria have shown positive results, supporting the use of the toxin in some patients with this disorder. This review summarizes the scientific data on the analgesic properties of BoNT, as well as the clinical data on the efficacy of the toxin in treating CM.

  2. NNDSS - Table II. Shiga toxin to Shigellosis

    Data.gov (United States)

    U.S. Department of Health & Human Services — NNDSS - Table II. Shiga toxin to Shigellosis - 2016. In this Table, provisional* cases of selected† notifiable diseases (≥1,000 cases reported during the preceding...

  3. Virulence and the Environment: a Novel Role for Vibrio cholerae Toxin-Coregulated Pili in Biofilm Formation on Chitin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reguera, Gemma; Kolter, Roberto

    2005-01-01

    The toxin-coregulated pilus (TCP) of Vibrio cholerae is required for intestinal colonization and cholera toxin acquisition. Here we report that TCP mediates bacterial interactions required for biofilm differentiation on chitinaceous surfaces. We also show that undifferentiated TCP− biofilms have reduced ecological fitness and, thus, that chitin colonization may represent an ecological setting outside the host in which selection for a host colonization factor may take place. PMID:15866944

  4. Investigation of a panel of monoclonal antibodies and polyclonal sera against anthrax toxins resulted in identification of an anti-lethal factor antibody with disease-enhancing characteristics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kulshreshtha, Parul; Tiwari, Ashutosh; Priyanka; Joon, Shikha; Sinha, Subrata; Bhatnagar, Rakesh

    2015-12-01

    Hybridomas were created using spleen of mice that were actively immunized with rLFn (recombinant N-terminal domain of lethal factor). Later on, separate group of mice were immunized with rLFn to obtain a polyclonal control for passive immunization studies of monoclonal antibodies. This led to the identification of one cohort of rLFn-immnized mice that harboured disease-enhancing polyclonal antibodies. At the same time, the monoclonal antibodies secreted by all the hybridomas were being tested. Two hybridomas secreted monoclonal antibodies (H10 and H8) that were cross-reactive with EF (edema factor) and LF (lethal factor), while the other two hybridomas secreted LF-specific antibodies (H7 and H11). Single chain variable fragment (LETscFv) was derived from H10 hybridoma. H11 was found to have disease-enhancing property. Combination of H11 with protective monoclonal antibodies (H8 and H10) reduced its disease enhancing nature. This in vitro abrogation of disease-enhancement provides the proof of concept that in polyclonal sera the disease enhancing character of a fraction of antibodies is overshadowed by the protective nature of the rest of the antibodies generated on active immunization. Copyright © 2015. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  5. Updates on tetanus toxin: a fundamental approach

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Md. Ahaduzzaman

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available Clostridium tetani is an anaerobic bacterium that produces second most poisonous protein toxins than any other bacteria. Tetanus in animals is sporadic in nature but difficult to combat even by using antibiotics and antiserum. It is crucial to understand the fundamental mechanisms and signals that control toxin production for advance research and medicinal uses. This review was intended for better understanding the basic patho-physiology of tetanus and neurotoxins (TeNT among the audience of related field.

  6. Botulinum toxin therapy for limb dystonias.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yoshimura, D M; Aminoff, M J; Olney, R K

    1992-03-01

    We investigated the effectiveness of botulinum toxin in 17 patients with limb dystonias (10 with occupational cramps, three with idiopathic dystonia unrelated to activity, and two each with post-stroke and parkinsonian dystonia) in a placebo-controlled, blinded study. We identified affected muscles clinically and by recording the EMG from implanted wire electrodes at rest and during performance of tasks that precipitated abnormal postures. There were three injections given with graded doses of toxin (average doses, 5 to 10, 10 to 20, and 20 to 40 units per muscle) and one with placebo, in random order. Subjective improvement occurred after 53% of injections of botulinum toxin, and this was substantial in 24%. Only one patient (7%) improved after placebo injection. Subjective improvement occurred in 82% of patients with at least one dose of toxin, lasting for 1 to 4 months. Response rates were similar between clinical groups. Objective evaluation failed to demonstrate significant improvement following treatment with toxin compared with placebo. The major side effect was transient focal weakness after 53% of injections of toxin.

  7. Botulinum toxin for the treatment of strabismus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rowe, Fiona J; Noonan, Carmel P

    2017-03-02

    The use of botulinum toxin as an investigative and treatment modality for strabismus is well reported in the medical literature. However, it is unclear how effective it is in comparison to other treatment options for strabismus. The primary objective was to examine the efficacy of botulinum toxin therapy in the treatment of strabismus compared with alternative conservative or surgical treatment options. This review sought to ascertain those types of strabismus that particularly benefit from the use of botulinum toxin as a treatment option (such as small angle strabismus or strabismus with binocular potential, i.e. the potential to use both eyes together as a pair). The secondary objectives were to investigate the dose effect and complication rates associated with botulinum toxin. We searched CENTRAL (which contains the Cochrane Eyes and Vision Trials Register) (2016, Issue 6), Ovid MEDLINE, Ovid MEDLINE In-Process and Other Non-Indexed Citations, Ovid MEDLINE Daily, Ovid OLDMEDLINE (January 1946 to July 2016), Embase (January 1980 to July 2016), Latin American and Caribbean Literature on Health Sciences (LILACS) (January 1982 to July 2016), the ISRCTN registry (www.isrctn.com/editAdvancedSearch), ClinicalTrials.gov (www.clinicaltrials.gov), and the World Health Organization (WHO) International Clinical Trials Registry Platform (ICTRP) (www.who.int/ictrp/search/en). We did not use any date or language restrictions in the electronic searches for trials. We last searched the electronic databases on 11 July 2016. We handsearched the British and Irish Orthoptic Journal, Australian Orthoptic Journal, proceedings of the European Strabismological Association (ESA), International Strabismological Association (ISA) and International Orthoptic Association (IOA) (www.liv.ac.uk/orthoptics/research/search.htm) and American Academy of Paediatric Ophthalmology and Strabismus meetings (AAPOS). We contacted researchers who are active in this field for information about further

  8. Development of a Zealand white rabbit deposition model to study inhalation anthrax

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Asgharian, Bahman; Price, Owen; Kabilan, Senthil; Jacob, Richard E.; Einstein, Daniel R.; Kuprat, Andrew P.; Corley, Richard A.

    2016-01-28

    Despite using rabbits in several inhalation exposure experiments to study diseases such as anthrax, there is a lack of understanding regarding deposition characteristics and fate of inhaled particles (bio-aerosols and viruses) in the respiratory tracts of rabbits. Such information allows dosimetric extrapolation to humans to inform human outcomes. The lung geometry of the New Zealand white rabbit (referred to simply as rabbits throughout the article) was constructed using recently acquired scanned images of the conducting airways of rabbits and available information on its acinar region. In addition, functional relationships were developed for the lung and breathing parameters of rabbits as a function of body weight. The lung geometry and breathing parameters were used to extend the existing deposition model for humans and several other species to rabbits. Evaluation of the deposition model for rabbits was made by comparing predictions with available measurements in the literature. Deposition predictions in the lungs of rabbits indicated smaller deposition fractions compared to those found in humans across various particle diameter ranges. The application of the deposition model for rabbits was demonstrated by extrapolating deposition predictions in rabbits to find equivalent human exposure concentrations assuming the same dose-response relationship between the two species. Human equivalent exposure concentration levels were found to be much smaller than those for rabbits.

  9. The secret life of the anthrax agent Bacillus anthracis: bacteriophage-mediated ecological adaptations.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Raymond Schuch

    2009-08-01

    Full Text Available Ecological and genetic factors that govern the occurrence and persistence of anthrax reservoirs in the environment are obscure. A central tenet, based on limited and often conflicting studies, has long held that growing or vegetative forms of Bacillus anthracis survive poorly outside the mammalian host and must sporulate to survive in the environment. Here, we present evidence of a more dynamic lifecycle, whereby interactions with bacterial viruses, or bacteriophages, elicit phenotypic alterations in B. anthracis and the emergence of infected derivatives, or lysogens, with dramatically altered survival capabilities. Using both laboratory and environmental B. anthracis strains, we show that lysogeny can block or promote sporulation depending on the phage, induce exopolysaccharide expression and biofilm formation, and enable the long-term colonization of both an artificial soil environment and the intestinal tract of the invertebrate redworm, Eisenia fetida. All of the B. anthracis lysogens existed in a pseudolysogenic-like state in both the soil and worm gut, shedding phages that could in turn infect non-lysogenic B. anthracis recipients and confer survival phenotypes in those environments. Finally, the mechanism behind several phenotypic changes was found to require phage-encoded bacterial sigma factors and the expression of at least one host-encoded protein predicted to be involved in the colonization of invertebrate intestines. The results here demonstrate that during its environmental phase, bacteriophages provide B. anthracis with alternatives to sporulation that involve the activation of soil-survival and endosymbiotic capabilities.

  10. Development of a Zealand White Rabbit Deposition Model to Study Inhalation Anthrax

    Science.gov (United States)

    Asgharian, Bahman; Price, Owen; Kabilan, Senthil; Jacob, Richard E.; Einstein, Daniel R.; Kuprat, A.P.; Corley, Richard A.

    2016-01-01

    Despite using rabbits in several inhalation exposure experiments to study diseases such as anthrax, there is a lack of understanding regarding deposition characteristics and fate of inhaled particles (bio-aerosols and viruses) in the respiratory tracts of rabbits. Such information allows dosimetric extrapolation to humans to inform human outcomes. The lung geometry of the New Zealand white rabbit (referred to simply as rabbits throughout the article) was constructed using recently acquired scanned images of the conducting airways of rabbits and available information on its acinar region. In addition, functional relationships were developed for the lung and breathing parameters of rabbits as a function of body weight. The lung geometry and breathing parameters were used to extend the existing deposition model for humans and several other species to rabbits. Evaluation of the deposition model for rabbits was made by comparing predictions with available measurements in the literature. Deposition predictions in the lungs of rabbits indicated smaller deposition fractions compared to those found in humans across various particle diameter ranges. The application of the deposition model for rabbits was demonstrated by extrapolating deposition predictions in rabbits to find equivalent human exposure concentrations assuming the same dose-response relationship between the two species. Human equivalent exposure concentration levels were found to be much smaller than those for rabbits. PMID:26895308

  11. Fatal attraction: vegetation responses to nutrient inputs attract herbivores to infectious anthrax carcass sites.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Turner, Wendy C; Kausrud, Kyrre L; Krishnappa, Yathin S; Cromsigt, Joris P G M; Ganz, Holly H; Mapaure, Isaac; Cloete, Claudine C; Havarua, Zepee; Küsters, Martina; Getz, Wayne M; Stenseth, Nils Chr

    2014-11-22

    Parasites can shape the foraging behaviour of their hosts through cues indicating risk of infection. When cues for risk co-occur with desired traits such as forage quality, individuals face a trade-off between nutrient acquisition and parasite exposure. We evaluated how this trade-off may influence disease transmission in a 3-year experimental study of anthrax in a guild of mammalian herbivores in Etosha National Park, Namibia. At plains zebra (Equus quagga) carcass sites we assessed (i) carcass nutrient effects on soils and grasses, (ii) concentrations of Bacillus anthracis (BA) on grasses and in soils, and (iii) herbivore grazing behaviour, compared with control sites, using motion-sensing camera traps. We found that carcass-mediated nutrient pulses improved soil and vegetation, and that BA is found on grasses up to 2 years after death. Host foraging responses to carcass sites shifted from avoidance to attraction, and ultimately to no preference, with the strength and duration of these behavioural responses varying among herbivore species. Our results demonstrate that animal carcasses alter the environment and attract grazing hosts to parasite aggregations. This attraction may enhance transmission rates, suggesting that hosts are limited in their ability to trade off nutrient intake with parasite avoidance when relying on indirect cues. © 2014 The Author(s) Published by the Royal Society. All rights reserved.

  12. Affinity chromatography of tetanus toxin, tetanus toxoid, and botulinum A toxin on synaptosomes, and differentiation of their acceptors

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Habermann, E [Giessen Univ. (Germany, F.R.). Pharmakologisches Inst.

    1976-01-01

    /sup 125/I-labelled tetanus toxin and /sup 125/I-labelled botulinum A neurotoxin are known to be specifically bound to brain synaptosomes. In order to discriminate between active toxin and inactive admixtures present in the starting material or arising during iodination, synaptosome columns were prepared using bromacetylcellulose and/or kieselgur (Celite) as carriers. Both types of columns adsorb the toxins from low ionic strength medium and release them if the pH and ionic strength are raised. Botulinum toxin was eluted with lower ionic strength than tetanus toxin, and could be freed from nontoxic admixtures. Analysis by affinity chromatography disclosed partially toxoided tetanus toxin in both labelled and unlabelled toxin samples. High concentrations of formaldehyde (0.5%) destroyed both toxicity and affinity to the synaptosomes of tetanus toxin. Low concentrations of formaldehyde (0.05%) yielded a derivative of low toxicity which was still, however less firmly, bound to synaptosomes. Tetanus and botulinum toxin differ by their acceptors. Whereas unlabelled botulinum toxin is unable to compete with labelled tetanus toxin, unlabelled tetanus toxin slightly competes with botulinum toxin. Both labelled toxins display anomalous binding behaviour in that they cannot be displaced completely even with a large excess of unlabelled toxin.

  13. Affinity chromatography of tetanus toxin, tetanus toxoid, and botulinum A toxin on synaptosomes, and differentiation of their acceptors

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Habermann, E.

    1976-01-01

    125 I-labelled tetanus toxin and 125 I-labelled botulinum A neurotoxin are known to be specifically bound to brain synaptosomes. In order to discriminate between active toxin and inactive admixtures present in the starting material or arising during iodination, synaptosome columns were prepared using bromacetylcellulose and/or kieselgur (Celite) as carriers. Both types of columns adsorb the toxins from low ionic strength medium and release them if the pH and ionic strength are raised. Botulinum toxin was eluted with lower ionic strength than tetanus toxin, and could be freed from nontoxic admixtures. Analysis by affinity chromatography disclosed partially toxoided tetanus toxin in both labelled and unlabelled toxin samples. High concentrations of formaldehyde (0.5%) destroyed both toxicity and affinity to the synaptosomes of tetanus toxin. Low concentrations of formaldehyde (0.05%) yielded a derivative of low toxicity which was still, however less firmly, bound to synaptosomes. Tetanus and botulinum toxin differ by their acceptors. Whereas unlabelled botulinum toxin is unable to compete with labelled tetanus toxin, unlabelled tetanus toxin slightly competes with botulinum toxin. Both labelled toxins display anomalous binding behaviour in that they cannot be displaced completely even with a large excess of unlabelled toxin. (orig.) [de

  14. Warm temperature acclimation impacts metabolism of paralytic shellfish toxins from Alexandrium minutum in commercial oysters.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Farrell, Hazel; Seebacher, Frank; O'Connor, Wayne; Zammit, Anthony; Harwood, D Tim; Murray, Shauna

    2015-09-01

    Species of Alexandrium produce potent neurotoxins termed paralytic shellfish toxins and are expanding their ranges worldwide, concurrent with increases in sea surface temperature. The metabolism of molluscs is temperature dependent, and increases in ocean temperature may influence both the abundance and distribution of Alexandrium and the dynamics of toxin uptake and depuration in shellfish. Here, we conducted a large-scale study of the effect of temperature on the uptake and depuration of paralytic shellfish toxins in three commercial oysters (Saccostrea glomerata and diploid and triploid Crassostrea gigas, n = 252 per species/ploidy level). Oysters were acclimated to two constant temperatures, reflecting current and predicted climate scenarios (22 and 27 °C), and fed a diet including the paralytic shellfish toxin-producing species Alexandrium minutum. While the oysters fed on A. minutum in similar quantities, concentrations of the toxin analogue GTX1,4 were significantly lower in warm-acclimated S. glomerata and diploid C. gigas after 12 days. Following exposure to A. minutum, toxicity of triploid C. gigas was not affected by temperature. Generally, detoxification rates were reduced in warm-acclimated oysters. The routine metabolism of the oysters was not affected by the toxins, but a significant effect was found at a cellular level in diploid C. gigas. The increasing incidences of Alexandrium blooms worldwide are a challenge for shellfish food safety regulation. Our findings indicate that rising ocean temperatures may reduce paralytic shellfish toxin accumulation in two of the three oyster types; however, they may persist for longer periods in oyster tissue. © 2015 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  15. Function-based Biosensor for Hazardous Waste Toxin Detection

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    James J Hickman

    2008-07-09

    There is a need for new types of toxicity sensors in the DOE and other agencies that are based on biological function as the toxins encountered during decontamination or waste remediation may be previously unknown or their effects subtle. Many times the contents of the environmental waste, especially the minor components, have not been fully identified and characterized. New sensors of this type could target unknown toxins that cause death as well as intermediate levels of toxicity that impair function or cause long term impairment that may eventually lead to death. The primary question posed in this grant was to create an electronically coupled neuronal cellular circuit to be used as sensor elements for a hybrid non-biological/biological toxin sensor system. A sensor based on the electrical signals transmitted between two mammalian neurons would allow the marriage of advances in solid state electronics with a functioning biological system to develop a new type of biosensor. Sensors of this type would be a unique addition to the field of sensor technology but would also be complementary to existing sensor technology that depends on knowledge of what is to be detected beforehand. We integrated physics, electronics, surface chemistry, biotechnology, and fundamental neuroscience in the development of this biosensor. Methods were developed to create artificial surfaces that enabled the patterning of discrete cells, and networks of cells, in culture; the networks were then aligned with transducers. The transducers were designed to measure electromagnetic fields (EMF) at low field strength. We have achieved all of the primary goals of the project. We can now pattern neurons routinely in our labs as well as align them with transducers. We have also shown the signals between neurons can be modulated by different biochemicals. In addition, we have made another significant advance where we have repeated the patterning results with adult hippocampal cells. Finally, we

  16. Epidermal Growth Factor Receptor Signaling Enhances the Proinflammatory Effects of Staphylococcus aureus Gamma-Toxin on the Mucosa.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gillman, Aaron N; Breshears, Laura M; Kistler, Charles K; Finnegan, Patrick M; Torres, Victor J; Schlievert, Patrick M; Peterson, Marnie L

    2017-06-28

    Staphylococcus aureus ( S. aureus ) produces many different exotoxins including the gamma-toxins, HlgAB and HlgCB. Gamma-toxins form pores in both leukocyte and erythrocyte membranes, resulting in cell lysis. The genes encoding gamma-toxins are present in most strains of S. aureus, and are commonly expressed in clinical isolates recovered from menstrual Toxic Shock Syndrome (mTSS) patients. This study set out to investigate the cytotoxic and proinflammatory effects of gamma-toxins on vaginal epithelial surfaces. We found that both HlgAB and HlgCB were cytotoxic to cultured human vaginal epithelial cells (HVECs) and induced cytokine production at sub-cytotoxic doses. Cytokine production induced by gamma-toxin treatment of HVECs was found to involve epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) signaling and mediated by shedding of EGFR ligands from the cell surface. The gamma-toxin subunits displayed differential binding to HVECs (HlgA 93%, HlgB 97% and HlgC 28%) with both components (HlgAB or HlgCB) required for maximum detectable binding and significant stimulation of cytokine production. In studies using full thickness ex vivo porcine vaginal mucosa, HlgAB or HlgCB stimulated a dose-dependent cytokine response, which was reduced significantly by inhibition of EGFR signaling. The effects of gamma-toxins on porcine vaginal tissue and cultured HVECs were validated using ex vivo human ectocervical tissue. Collectively, these studies have identified the EGFR-signaling pathway as a key component in gamma-toxin-induced proinflammatory changes at epithelial surfaces and highlight a potential therapeutic target to diminish toxigenic effects of S. aureus infections.

  17. Yeast β-1,6-glucan is a primary target for the Saccharomyces cerevisiae K2 toxin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lukša, Juliana; Podoliankaitė, Monika; Vepštaitė, Iglė; Strazdaitė-Žielienė, Živilė; Urbonavičius, Jaunius; Servienė, Elena

    2015-04-01

    Certain Saccharomyces cerevisiae strains secrete different killer proteins of double-stranded-RNA origin. These proteins confer a growth advantage to their host by increasing its survival. K2 toxin affects the target cell by binding to the cell surface, disrupting the plasma membrane integrity, and inducing ion leakage. In this study, we determined that K2 toxin saturates the yeast cell surface receptors in 10 min. The apparent amount of K2 toxin, bound to a single cell of wild type yeast under saturating conditions, was estimated to be 435 to 460 molecules. It was found that an increased level of β-1,6-glucan directly correlates with the number of toxin molecules bound, thereby impacting the morphology and determining the fate of the yeast cell. We observed that the binding of K2 toxin to the yeast surface receptors proceeds in a similar manner as in case of the related K1 killer protein. It was demonstrated that the externally supplied pustulan, a poly-β-1,6-glucan, but not the glucans bearing other linkage types (such as laminarin, chitin, and pullulan) efficiently inhibits the K2 toxin killing activity. In addition, the analysis of toxin binding to the intact cells and spheroplasts confirmed that majority of K2 protein molecules attach to the β-1,6-glucan, rather than the plasma membrane-localized receptors. Taken together, our results reveal that β-1,6-glucan is a primary target of K2 toxin and is important for the execution of its killing property. Copyright © 2015, American Society for Microbiology. All Rights Reserved.

  18. Structural constraints-based evaluation of immunogenic avirulent toxins from Clostridium botulinum C2 and C3 toxins as subunit vaccines.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Prisilla, A; Prathiviraj, R; Sasikala, R; Chellapandi, P

    2016-10-01

    Clostridium botulinum (group-III) is an anaerobic bacterium producing C2 and C3 toxins in addition to botulinum neurotoxins in avian and mammalian cells. C2 and C3 toxins are members of bacterial ADP-ribosyltransferase superfamily, which modify the eukaryotic cell surface proteins by ADP-ribosylation reaction. Herein, the mutant proteins with lack of catalytic and pore forming function derived from C2 (C2I and C2II) and C3 toxins were computationally evaluated to understand their structure-function integrity. We have chosen many structural constraints including local structural environment, folding process, backbone conformation, conformational dynamic sub-space, NAD-binding specificity and antigenic determinants for screening of suitable avirulent toxins. A total of 20 avirulent mutants were identified out of 23 mutants, which were experimentally produced by site-directed mutagenesis. No changes in secondary structural elements in particular to α-helices and β-sheets and also in fold rate of all-β classes. Structural stability was maintained by reordered hydrophobic and hydrogen bonding patterns. Molecular dynamic studies suggested that coupled mutations may restrain the binding affinity to NAD(+) or protein substrate upon structural destabilization. Avirulent toxins of this study have stable energetic backbone conformation with a common blue print of folding process. Molecular docking studies revealed that avirulent mutants formed more favorable hydrogen bonding with the side-chain of amino acids near to conserved NAD-binding core, despite of restraining NAD-binding specificity. Thus, structural constraints in the avirulent toxins would determine their immunogenic nature for the prioritization of protein-based subunit vaccine/immunogens to avian and veterinary animals infected with C. botulinum. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  19. Botulinum toxin in parkinsonism: The when, how, and which for botulinum toxin injections.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cardoso, Francisco

    2018-06-01

    The aim of this article is to provide a review of the use of injections of botulinum toxin in the management of selected symptoms and signs of Parkinson's disease and other forms of parkinsonism. Sialorrhea is defined as inability to control oral secretions, resulting in excessive saliva in the oropharynx. There is a high level of evidence for the treatment of sialorrhea in parkinsonism with injections of different forms of botulinum toxin type A as well as botulinum toxin type B. Tremor can be improved by the use of botulinum toxin injections but improved tremor control often leads to concomitant motor weakness, limiting its use. Levodopa induced dyskinesias are difficult to treat with botulinum toxin injections because of their variable frequency and direction. Apraxia of eyelid opening, a sign more commonly seen in progressive supranuclear palsy and other tauopathies, often improves after botulinum toxin injections. Recent data suggest that regardless of the underlying mechanism, pain in parkinsonism can be alleviated by botulinum toxin injections. Finally, freezing of gait, camptocormia and Pisa syndrome in parkinsonism almost invariably fail to respond to botulinum toxin injections. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  20. Single toxin dose-response models revisited

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Demidenko, Eugene, E-mail: eugened@dartmouth.edu [Department of Biomedical Data Science, Geisel School of Medicine at Dartmouth, Hanover, NH03756 (United States); Glaholt, SP, E-mail: sglaholt@indiana.edu [Indiana University, School of Public & Environmental Affairs, Bloomington, IN47405 (United States); Department of Biological Sciences, Dartmouth College, Hanover, NH03755 (United States); Kyker-Snowman, E, E-mail: ek2002@wildcats.unh.edu [Department of Natural Resources and the Environment, University of New Hampshire, Durham, NH03824 (United States); Shaw, JR, E-mail: joeshaw@indiana.edu [Indiana University, School of Public & Environmental Affairs, Bloomington, IN47405 (United States); Chen, CY, E-mail: Celia.Y.Chen@dartmouth.edu [Department of Biological Sciences, Dartmouth College, Hanover, NH03755 (United States)

    2017-01-01

    The goal of this paper is to offer a rigorous analysis of the sigmoid shape single toxin dose-response relationship. The toxin efficacy function is introduced and four special points, including maximum toxin efficacy and inflection points, on the dose-response curve are defined. The special points define three phases of the toxin effect on mortality: (1) toxin concentrations smaller than the first inflection point or (2) larger then the second inflection point imply low mortality rate, and (3) concentrations between the first and the second inflection points imply high mortality rate. Probabilistic interpretation and mathematical analysis for each of the four models, Hill, logit, probit, and Weibull is provided. Two general model extensions are introduced: (1) the multi-target hit model that accounts for the existence of several vital receptors affected by the toxin, and (2) model with a nonzero mortality at zero concentration to account for natural mortality. Special attention is given to statistical estimation in the framework of the generalized linear model with the binomial dependent variable as the mortality count in each experiment, contrary to the widespread nonlinear regression treating the mortality rate as continuous variable. The models are illustrated using standard EPA Daphnia acute (48 h) toxicity tests with mortality as a function of NiCl or CuSO{sub 4} toxin. - Highlights: • The paper offers a rigorous study of a sigmoid dose-response relationship. • The concentration with highest mortality rate is rigorously defined. • A table with four special points for five morality curves is presented. • Two new sigmoid dose-response models have been introduced. • The generalized linear model is advocated for estimation of sigmoid dose-response relationship.

  1. Staphylococcal β-Toxin Modulates Human Aortic Endothelial Cell and Platelet Function through Sphingomyelinase and Biofilm Ligase Activities

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alfa Herrera

    2017-03-01

    Full Text Available Staphylococcus aureus causes many infections, such as skin and soft tissue, pneumonia, osteomyelitis, and infective endocarditis (IE. IE is an endovascular infection of native and prosthetic valves and the lining of the heart; it is characterized by the formation of cauliflower-like “vegetations” composed of fibrin, platelets, other host factors, bacteria, and bacterial products. β-Toxin is an S. aureus virulence factor that contributes to the microorganism’s ability to cause IE. This cytolysin has two enzymatic activities: sphingomyelinase (SMase and biofilm ligase. Although both activities have functions in a rabbit model of IE, the mechanism(s by which β-toxin directly affects human cells and is involved in the infectious process has not been elucidated. Here, we compared the in vitro effects of purified recombinant wild-type β-toxin, SMase-deficient β-toxin (H289N, and biofilm ligase-deficient β-toxin (H162A and/or D163A on human aortic endothelial cells (HAECs and platelets. β-Toxin was cytotoxic to HAECs and inhibited the production of interleukin 8 (IL-8 from these cells by both SMase and biofilm ligase activities. β-Toxin altered HAEC surface expression of CD40 and vascular cell adhesion molecule 1 (VCAM-1. HAECs treated with β-toxin displayed granular membrane morphology not seen in treatment with the SMase-deficient mutant. The altered morphology resulted in two possibly separable activities, cell rounding and redistribution of cell membranes into granules, which were not the result of endosome production from the Golgi apparatus or lysosomes. β-Toxin directly aggregated rabbit platelets via SMase activity.

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

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

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

    2013-01-01

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

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

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

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

    2013-01-04

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

  4. Botulinum toxin detection using AlGaN /GaN high electron mobility transistors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Yu-Lin; Chu, B. H.; Chen, K. H.; Chang, C. Y.; Lele, T. P.; Tseng, Y.; Pearton, S. J.; Ramage, J.; Hooten, D.; Dabiran, A.; Chow, P. P.; Ren, F.

    2008-12-01

    Antibody-functionalized, Au-gated AlGaN /GaN high electron mobility transistors (HEMTs) were used to detect botulinum toxin. The antibody was anchored to the gate area through immobilized thioglycolic acid. The AlGaN /GaN HEMT drain-source current showed a rapid response of less than 5s when the target toxin in a buffer was added to the antibody-immobilized surface. We could detect a range of concentrations from 1to10ng/ml. These results clearly demonstrate the promise of field-deployable electronic biological sensors based on AlGaN /GaN HEMTs for botulinum toxin detection.

  5. Current advances in aptamer-assisted technologies for detecting bacterial and fungal toxins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alizadeh, N; Memar, M Y; Mehramuz, B; Abibiglou, S S; Hemmati, F; Samadi Kafil, H

    2018-03-01

    Infectious diseases are among the common leading causes of morbidity and mortality worldwide. Associated with the emergence of new infectious diseases, the increasing number of antimicrobial-resistant isolates presents a serious threat to public health and hospitalized patients. A microbial pathogen may elicit several host responses and use a variety of mechanisms to evade host defences. These methods and mechanisms include capsule, lipopolysaccharides or cell wall components, adhesions and toxins. Toxins inhibit phagocytosis, cause septic shock and host cell damages by binding to host surface receptors and invasion. Bacterial and fungal pathogens are able to apply many different toxin-dependent mechanisms to disturb signalling pathways and the structural integrity of host cells for establishing and maintaining infections Initial techniques for analysis of bacterial toxins were based on in vivo or in vitro assessments. There is a permanent demand for appropriate detection methods which are affordable, practical, careful, rapid, sensitive, efficient and economical. Aptamers are DNA or RNA oligonucleotides that are selected by systematic evolution of ligands using exponential enrichment (SELEX) methods and can be applied in diagnostic applications. This review provides an overview of aptamer-based methods as a novel approach for detecting toxins in bacterial and fungal pathogens. © 2017 The Society for Applied Microbiology.

  6. Infectious polymorphic toxins delivered by outer membrane exchange discriminate kin in myxobacteria.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vassallo, Christopher N; Cao, Pengbo; Conklin, Austin; Finkelstein, Hayley; Hayes, Christopher S; Wall, Daniel

    2017-08-18

    Myxobacteria are known for complex social behaviors including outer membrane exchange (OME), in which cells exchange large amounts of outer membrane lipids and proteins upon contact. The TraA cell surface receptor selects OME partners based on a variable domain. However, traA polymorphism alone is not sufficient to precisely discriminate kin. Here, we report a novel family of OME-delivered toxins that promote kin discrimination of OME partners. These SitA lipoprotein toxins are polymorphic and widespread in myxobacteria. Each sitA is associated with a cognate sitI immunity gene, and in some cases a sitB accessory gene. Remarkably, we show that SitA is transferred serially between target cells, allowing the toxins to move cell-to-cell like an infectious agent. Consequently, SitA toxins define strong identity barriers between strains and likely contribute to population structure, maintenance of cooperation, and strain diversification. Moreover, these results highlight the diversity of systems evolved to deliver toxins between bacteria.

  7. Monitoring of DSP toxins in small-sized plankton fraction of seawater collected in Mutsu Bay, Japan, by ELISA method: relation with toxin contamination of scallop.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Imai, Ichiro; Sugioka, Hikaru; Nishitani, Goh; Mitsuya, Tadashi; Hamano, Yonekazu

    2003-01-01

    Monitorings were conducted on DSP toxins in mid-gut gland of scallop (mouse assay), cell numbers of toxic dinoflagellate species of Dinophysis, and diarrhetic shellfish poisoning (DSP) toxins in small-sized (0.7-5 microm) plankton fraction of seawater collected from surface (0 m) and 20 m depth at a station in Mutsu Bay, Aomori Prefecture, Japan, in 2000. A specific enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) was employed for the analysis of DSP toxins in small-sized plankton fraction using a mouse monoclonal anti-okadaic acid antibody which recognizes okadaic acid, dinophysistoxin-1, and dinophysistoxin-3. DSP toxins were detected twice in the mid-gut gland of scallops at 1.1-2.3 MU (mouse units) g(-1) on 26 June and at 0.6-1.2 MU g(-1) on 3 July, respectively. Relatively high cell densities of D. fortii were observed on 26 June and 11 September, and may only contribute to the bivalve toxicity during late June to early July. D. acuminata did not appear to be responsible for the toxicity of scallops in Mutsu Bay in 2000. ELISA monitoring of small-sized plankton fraction in seawater could detect DSP toxins two weeks before the detection of the toxin in scallops, and could do so two weeks after the loss of the bivalve toxicity by mouse assay. On 17 July, toxic D. fortii was detected at only small number, <10 cells l(-1), but DSP toxins were detected by the ELISA assay, suggesting a presence of other toxic small-sized plankton in seawater. For the purpose of reducing negative impacts of DSP occurrences, monitorings have been carried out hitherto on DSP toxins of bivalve tissues by mouse assay and on cell densities of "toxic" species of Dinophysis. Here we propose a usefulness of ELISA monitoring of plankton toxicity, especially in small-sized fraction, which are possible foods of mixotrophic Dinophysis, as a practical tool for detecting and predicting DSPs in coastal areas of fisheries grounds of bivalve aquaculture.

  8. Botulinum Toxin in Management of Limb Tremor

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elina Zakin

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available Essential tremor is characterized by persistent, usually bilateral and symmetric, postural or kinetic activation of agonist and antagonist muscles involving either the distal or proximal upper extremity. Quality of life is often affected and one’s ability to perform daily tasks becomes impaired. Oral therapies, including propranolol and primidone, can be effective in the management of essential tremor, although adverse effects can limit their use and about 50% of individuals lack response to oral pharmacotherapy. Locally administered botulinum toxin injection has become increasingly useful in the management of essential tremor. Targeting of select muscles with botulinum toxin is an area of active research, and muscle selection has important implications for toxin dosing and functional outcomes. The use of anatomical landmarks with palpation, EMG guidance, electrical stimulation, and ultrasound has been studied as a technique for muscle localization in toxin injection. Earlier studies implemented a standard protocol for the injection of (predominantly wrist flexors and extensors using palpation and EMG guidance. Targeting of muscles by selection of specific activators of tremor (tailored to each patient using kinematic analysis might allow for improvement in efficacy, including functional outcomes. It is this individualized muscle selection and toxin dosing (requiring injection within various sites of a single muscle that has allowed for success in the management of tremors.

  9. Update on botulinum toxin and dermal fillers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Berbos, Zachary J; Lipham, William J

    2010-09-01

    The art and science of facial rejuvenation is an ever-evolving field of medicine, as evidenced by the continual development of new surgical and nonsurgical treatment modalities. Over the past 10 years, the use of botulinum toxin and dermal fillers for aesthetic purposes has risen sharply. Herein, we discuss properties of several commonly used injectable products and provide basic instruction for their use toward the goal of achieving facial rejuvenation. The demand for nonsurgical injection-based facial rejuvenation products has risen enormously in recent years. Used independently or concurrently, botulinum toxin and dermal filler agents offer an affordable, minimally invasive approach to facial rejuvenation. Botulinum toxin and dermal fillers can be used to diminish facial rhytides, restore facial volume, and sculpt facial contours, thereby achieving an aesthetically pleasing, youthful facial appearance.

  10. Mobility of adsorbed Cry1Aa insecticidal toxin from Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt) on montmorillonite measured by fluorescence recovery after photobleaching (FRAP)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Helassa, Nordine; Daudin, Gabrielle; Noinville, Sylvie; Janot, Jean-Marc; Déjardin, Philippe; Staunton, Siobhán; Quiquampoix, Hervé

    2010-06-01

    The insecticidal toxins produced by genetically modified Bt crops are introduced into soil through root exudates and tissue decomposition and adsorb readily on soil components, especially on clays. This immobilisation and the consequent concentration of the toxins in "hot spots" could increase the exposure of soil organisms. Whereas the effects on non-target organisms are well documented, few studies consider the migration of the toxin in soil. In this study, the residual mobility of Bt Cry1Aa insecticidal toxin adsorbed on montmorillonite was assessed using fluorescence recovery after photobleaching (FRAP). This technique, which is usually used to study dynamics of cytoplasmic and membrane molecules in live cells, was applied for the first time to a protein adsorbed on a finely divided swelling clay mineral, montmorillonite. No mobility of adsorbed toxin was observed at any pH and at different degrees of surface saturation.

  11. Toxin Mediates Sepsis Caused by Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus epidermidis.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Li Qin

    2017-02-01

    Full Text Available Bacterial sepsis is a major killer in hospitalized patients. Coagulase-negative staphylococci (CNS with the leading species Staphylococcus epidermidis are the most frequent causes of nosocomial sepsis, with most infectious isolates being methicillin-resistant. However, which bacterial factors underlie the pathogenesis of CNS sepsis is unknown. While it has been commonly believed that invariant structures on the surface of CNS trigger sepsis by causing an over-reaction of the immune system, we show here that sepsis caused by methicillin-resistant S. epidermidis is to a large extent mediated by the methicillin resistance island-encoded peptide toxin, PSM-mec. PSM-mec contributed to bacterial survival in whole human blood and resistance to neutrophil-mediated killing, and caused significantly increased mortality and cytokine expression in a mouse sepsis model. Furthermore, we show that the PSM-mec peptide itself, rather than the regulatory RNA in which its gene is embedded, is responsible for the observed virulence phenotype. This finding is of particular importance given the contrasting roles of the psm-mec locus that have been reported in S. aureus strains, inasmuch as our findings suggest that the psm-mec locus may exert effects in the background of S. aureus strains that differ from its original role in the CNS environment due to originally "unintended" interferences. Notably, while toxins have never been clearly implied in CNS infections, our tissue culture and mouse infection model data indicate that an important type of infection caused by the predominant CNS species is mediated to a large extent by a toxin. These findings suggest that CNS infections may be amenable to virulence-targeted drug development approaches.

  12. Marine toxins and their toxicological significance: An overview

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Sarkar, A.

    , Hemolysins-1 and hemolysin-2, saxitoxin, neosaxitoxin, gonyautoxin, tetrodotoxin, ptychodiscus brevis toxin and theonellamide F. According to their mode of action, these toxins are classified into different categories such as cytotoxin, enterotoxin...

  13. Vth Pan American Symposium on Animal, Plant and Microbial Toxins

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Ownby, Charlotte

    1996-01-01

    .... Presentations on arthropod toxins included work on scorpion neurotoxins, K+ channel-blocking peptides, lice and wasp proteins, stinging insect venom allergens and Australian funnel-web spider toxins...

  14. Cellular Entry of Clostridium perfringens Iota-Toxin and Clostridium botulinum C2 Toxin

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Masaya Takehara

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available Clostridium perfringens iota-toxin and Clostridium botulinum C2 toxin are composed of two non-linked proteins, one being the enzymatic component and the other being the binding/translocation component. These latter components recognize specific receptors and oligomerize in plasma membrane lipid-rafts, mediating the uptake of the enzymatic component into the cytosol. Enzymatic components induce actin cytoskeleton disorganization through the ADP-ribosylation of actin and are responsible for cell rounding and death. This review focuses upon the recent advances in cellular internalization of clostridial binary toxins.

  15. Cellular Entry of Clostridium perfringens Iota-Toxin and Clostridium botulinum C2 Toxin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Takehara, Masaya; Takagishi, Teruhisa; Seike, Soshi; Oda, Masataka; Sakaguchi, Yoshihiko; Hisatsune, Junzo; Ochi, Sadayuki; Kobayashi, Keiko; Nagahama, Masahiro

    2017-08-11

    Clostridium perfringens iota-toxin and Clostridium botulinum C2 toxin are composed of two non-linked proteins, one being the enzymatic component and the other being the binding/translocation component. These latter components recognize specific receptors and oligomerize in plasma membrane lipid-rafts, mediating the uptake of the enzymatic component into the cytosol. Enzymatic components induce actin cytoskeleton disorganization through the ADP-ribosylation of actin and are responsible for cell rounding and death. This review focuses upon the recent advances in cellular internalization of clostridial binary toxins.

  16. Therapeutic Approaches of Botulinum Toxin in Gynecology

    OpenAIRE

    Marius Alexandru Moga; Oana Gabriela Dimienescu; Andreea Bălan; Ioan Scârneciu; Barna Barabaș; Liana Pleș

    2018-01-01

    Botulinum toxins (BoNTs) are produced by several anaerobic species of the genus Clostridium and, although they were originally considered lethal toxins, today they find their usefulness in the treatment of a wide range of pathologies in various medical specialties. Botulinum neurotoxin has been identified in seven different isoforms (BoNT-A, BoNT-B, BoNT-C, BoNT-D, BoNT-E, BoNT-F, and BoNT-G). Neurotoxigenic Clostridia can produce more than 40 different BoNT subtypes and, recently, a new BoNT...

  17. Inhalation Anthrax (Ames aerosol) in Naive and Vaccinated New Zealand Rabbits: Characterizing the Spread of Bacteria from Lung Deposition to Bacteremia

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-06-28

    Lond.) 51, 372–385. Henderson, D. W., Peacock , S., and Belton, F. C. (1956). Observations on the prophylaxis of experimental pulmonary anthrax in...terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial License, which permits non-commercial use, distribution, and reproduction in other forums

  18. Bacillus cereus Biovar Anthracis Causing Anthrax in Sub-Saharan Africa-Chromosomal Monophyly and Broad Geographic Distribution.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kym S Antonation

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available Through full genome analyses of four atypical Bacillus cereus isolates, designated B. cereus biovar anthracis, we describe a distinct clade within the B. cereus group that presents with anthrax-like disease, carrying virulence plasmids similar to those of classic Bacillus anthracis. We have isolated members of this clade from different mammals (wild chimpanzees, gorillas, an elephant and goats in West and Central Africa (Côte d'Ivoire, Cameroon, Central African Republic and Democratic Republic of Congo. The isolates shared several phenotypic features of both B. anthracis and B. cereus, but differed amongst each other in motility and their resistance or sensitivity to penicillin. They all possessed the same mutation in the regulator gene plcR, different from the one found in B. anthracis, and in addition, carry genes which enable them to produce a second capsule composed of hyaluronic acid. Our findings show the existence of a discrete clade of the B. cereus group capable of causing anthrax-like disease, found in areas of high biodiversity, which are possibly also the origin of the worldwide distributed B. anthracis. Establishing the impact of these pathogenic bacteria on threatened wildlife species will require systematic investigation. Furthermore, the consumption of wildlife found dead by the local population and presence in a domestic animal reveal potential sources of exposure to humans.

  19. 77 FR 9888 - Shiga Toxin-Producing Escherichia coli

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-02-21

    ... Toxin-Producing Escherichia coli in Certain Raw Beef Products AGENCY: Food Safety and Inspection Service... toxin-producing Escherichia coli (STEC) serogroups (O26, O45, O103, O111, O121, and O145). This new date..., that are contaminated with Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli (STEC) O26, O45, O103, O111, O121...

  20. Military Importance of Natural Toxins and Their Analogs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pitschmann, Vladimír; Hon, Zdeněk

    2016-04-28

    Toxin weapon research, development, production and the ban on its uses is an integral part of international law, with particular attention paid to the protection against these weapons. In spite of this, hazards associated with toxins cannot be completely excluded. Some of these hazards are also pointed out in the present review. The article deals with the characteristics and properties of natural toxins and synthetic analogs potentially constituting the basis of toxin weapons. It briefly describes the history of military research and the use of toxins from distant history up to the present age. With respect to effective disarmament conventions, it mentions certain contemporary concepts of possible toxin applications for military purposes and the protection of public order (suppression of riots); it also briefly refers to the question of terrorism. In addition, it deals with certain traditional as well as modern technologies of the research, synthesis, and use of toxins, which can affect the continuing development of toxin weapons. These are, for example, cases of new toxins from natural sources, their chemical synthesis, production of synthetic analogs, the possibility of using methods of genetic engineering and modern biotechnologies or the possible applications of nanotechnology and certain pharmaceutical methods for the effective transfer of toxins into the organism. The authors evaluate the military importance of toxins based on their comparison with traditional chemical warfare agents. They appeal to the ethics of the scientific work as a principal condition for the prevention of toxin abuse in wars, military conflicts, as well as in non-military attacks.

  1. Recent outbreak of cutaneous anthrax in Bangladesh: clinico-demographic profile and treatment outcome of cases attended at Rajshahi Medical College Hospital

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Siddiqui Muhammad

    2012-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Human cutaneous anthrax results from skin exposure to B. anthracis, primarily due to occupational exposure. Bangladesh has experienced a number of outbreaks of cutaneous anthrax in recent years. The last episode occurred from April to August, 2011 and created mass havoc due to its dreadful clinical outcome and socio-cultural consequences. We report here the clinico-demographic profile and treatment outcome of 15 cutaneous anthrax cases attended at the Dermatology Outpatient Department of Rajshahi Medical College Hospital, Bangladesh between April and August, 2011 with an aim to create awareness for early case detection and management. Findings Anthrax was suspected primarily based on cutaneous manifestations of typical non-tender ulcer with black eschar, with or without oedema, and a history of butchering, or dressing/washing of cattle/goat or their meat. Diagnosis was established by demonstration of large gram-positive rods, typically resembling B. anthracis under light microscope where possible and also by ascertaining therapeutic success. The mean age of cases was 21.4 years (ranging from 3 to 46 years, 7 (46.7% being males and 8 (53.3% females. The majority of cases were from lower middle socioeconomic status. Types of exposures included butchering (20%, contact with raw meat (46.7%, and live animals (33.3%. Malignant pustule was present in upper extremity, both extremities, face, and trunk at frequencies of 11 (73.3%, 2 (13.3%, 1 (6.7% and 1 (6.7% respectively. Eight (53.3% patients presented with fever, 7 (46.7% had localized oedema and 5 (33.3% had regional lymphadenopathy. Anthrax was confirmed in 13 (86.7% cases by demonstration of gram-positive rods. All cases were cured with 2 months oral ciprofloxacin combined with flucoxacillin for 2 weeks. Conclusions We present the findings from this series of cases to reinforce the criteria for clinical diagnosis and to urge prompt therapeutic measures to treat

  2. Prevention, detection, and response to anthrax outbreak in Northern Tanzania using one health approach: A case study of Selela ward in Monduli district

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elibariki R. Mwakapeje

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available Background: Anthrax is an infectious fatal zoonotic disease caused by Bacillus anthracis. Anthrax outbreak was confirmed in samples of wild animals following rumors of the outbreak in wild animals, livestock, and humans in Selela ward, Monduli district of Northern Tanzania. Therefore, a multi-sectorial team was deployed for outbreak response in the affected areas. Objectives: The aim of the response was to manage the outbreak in a One Health approach and specifically: (i To determine the magnitude of anthrax outbreak in humans, livestock, and wild animals in Selela ward, (ii to assess the outbreak local response capacity, (iii to establish mechanisms for safe disposal of animal carcasses in the affected areas, and (iv to mount effective control and preventive strategies using One Health approach in the affected areas. Materials and Methods: This was a cross-sectional field survey using: (i Active searching of suspected human cases at health facilities and community level, (ii physical counting and disposal of wild animal carcasses in the affected area, (iii collection of specimens from suspected human cases and animal carcasses for laboratory analysis, and (iv meetings with local animal and human health staff, political, and traditional leaders at local levels. We analyzed data by STATA software, and a map was created using Quantum GIS software. Results: A total of 21 humans were suspected, and most of them (62% being from Selela ward. The outbreak caused deaths of 10 cattle, 26 goats, and three sheep, and 131 wild animal carcasses were discarded the majority of them being wildebeest (83%. Based on laboratory results, three blood smears tested positive for anthrax using Giemsa staining while two wildebeest samples tested positive and five human blood samples tested negative for anthrax using quantitative polymerase chain reaction techniques. Clinical forms of anthrax were also observed in humans and livestock which suggest that wild animals may

  3. Expression and mutagenesis of the sea anemone toxin Av2 reveals key amino acid residues important for activity on voltage-gated sodium channels.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moran, Yehu; Cohen, Lior; Kahn, Roy; Karbat, Izhar; Gordon, Dalia; Gurevitz, Michael

    2006-07-25

    Type I sea anemone toxins are highly potent modulators of voltage-gated Na-channels (Na(v)s) and compete with the structurally dissimilar scorpion alpha-toxins on binding to receptor site-3. Although these features provide two structurally different probes for studying receptor site-3 and channel fast inactivation, the bioactive surface of sea anemone toxins has not been fully resolved. We established an efficient expression system for Av2 (known as ATX II), a highly insecticidal sea anemone toxin from Anemonia viridis (previously named A. sulcata), and mutagenized it throughout. Each toxin mutant was analyzed in toxicity and binding assays as well as by circular dichroism spectroscopy to discern the effects derived from structural perturbation from those related to bioactivity. Six residues were found to constitute the anti-insect bioactive surface of Av2 (Val-2, Leu-5, Asn-16, Leu-18, and Ile-41). Further analysis of nine Av2 mutants on the human heart channel Na(v)1.5 expressed in Xenopus oocytes indicated that the bioactive surfaces toward insects and mammals practically coincide but differ from the bioactive surface of a structurally similar sea anemone toxin, Anthopleurin B, from Anthopleura xanthogrammica. Hence, our results not only demonstrate clear differences in the bioactive surfaces of Av2 and scorpion alpha-toxins but also indicate that despite the general conservation in structure and importance of the Arg-14 loop and its flanking residues Gly-10 and Gly-20 for function, the surface of interaction between different sea anemone toxins and Na(v)s varies.

  4. 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.

  5. 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.

  6. The genome of a Bacillus isolate causing anthrax in chimpanzees combines chromosomal properties of B. cereus with B. anthracis virulence plasmids.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Silke R Klee

    Full Text Available Anthrax is a fatal disease caused by strains of Bacillus anthracis. Members of this monophyletic species are non motile and are all characterized by the presence of four prophages and a nonsense mutation in the plcR regulator gene. Here we report the complete genome sequence of a Bacillus strain isolated from a chimpanzee that had died with clinical symptoms of anthrax. Unlike classic B. anthracis, this strain was motile and lacked the four prohages and the nonsense mutation. Four replicons were identified, a chromosome and three plasmids. Comparative genome analysis revealed that the chromosome resembles those of non-B. anthracis members of the Bacillus cereus group, whereas two plasmids were identical to the anthrax virulence plasmids pXO1 and pXO2. The function of the newly discovered third plasmid with a length of 14 kbp is unknown. A detailed comparison of genomic loci encoding key features confirmed a higher similarity to B. thuringiensis serovar konkukian strain 97-27 and B. cereus E33L than to B. anthracis strains. For the first time we describe the sequence of an anthrax causing bacterium possessing both anthrax plasmids that apparently does not belong to the monophyletic group of all so far known B. anthracis strains and that differs in important diagnostic features. The data suggest that this bacterium has evolved from a B. cereus strain independently from the classic B. anthracis strains and established a B. anthracis lifestyle. Therefore we suggest to designate this isolate as "B. cereus variety (var. anthracis".

  7. Fate of Fusarium Toxins during Brewing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Habler, Katharina; Geissinger, Cajetan; Hofer, Katharina; Schüler, Jan; Moghari, Sarah; Hess, Michael; Gastl, Martina; Rychlik, Michael

    2017-01-11

    Some information is available about the fate of Fusarium toxins during the brewing process, but only little is known about the single processing steps in detail. In our study we produced beer from two different barley cultivars inoculated with three different Fusarium species, namely, Fusarium culmorum, Fusarium sporotrichioides, and Fusarium avenaceum, producing a wide range of mycotoxins such as type B trichothecenes, type A trichothecenes, and enniatins. By the use of multi-mycotoxin LC-MS/MS stable isotope dilution methods we were able to follow the fate of Fusarium toxins during the entire brewing process. In particular, the type B trichothecenes deoxynivalenol, 3-acetyldeoxynivalenol, and 15-acetyldeoxynivalenol showed similar behaviors. Between 35 and 52% of those toxins remained in the beer after filtration. The contents of the potentially hazardous deoxynivalenol-3-glucoside and the type A trichothecenes increased during mashing, but a rapid decrease of deoxynivalenol-3-glucoside content was found during the following steps of lautering and wort boiling. The concentration of enniatins greatly decreased with the discarding of spent grains or finally with the hot break. The results of our study show the retention of diverse Fusarium toxins during the brewing process and allow for assessing the food safety of beer regarding the monitored Fusarium mycotoxins.

  8. Botulinum Toxin in Neurogenic Detrusor Overactivity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carlos Arturo Levi D'Ancona

    2012-09-01

    Full Text Available Purpose To evaluate the effects of botulinum toxin on urodynamic parameters and quality of life in patients with neurogenic detrusor overactivity. Methods Thirty four adult patients with spinal cord injury and detrusor overactivity were selected. The patients received 300 units of botulinum toxin type A. The endpoints evaluated with the episodes of urinary incontinence and measured the maximum cystometric capacity, maximum amplitude of detrusor pressure and bladder compliance at the beginning and end of the study (24 weeks and evaluated the quality of life by applying the Qualiveen questionnaire. Results A significant decrease in the episodes of urinary incontinence was observed. All urodynamic parameters presented a significant improvement. The same was observed in the quality of life index and the specific impact of urinary problems scores from the Qualiveen questionnaire. Six patients did not complete the study, two due to incomplete follow-up, and four violated protocol and were excluded from the analyses. No systemic adverse events of botulinum toxin type A were reported. Conclusions A botulinum toxin type A showed a significantly improved response in urodynamics parameters and specific and general quality of life.

  9. Bioengineered kidney tubules efficiently excrete uremic toxins

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Jansen, Jitske; Fedecostante, M.; Wilmer, M.; Peters, J.G.; Kreuser, U.M.; Broek, P.H.; Mensink, R.A.; Boltje, T.J.; Stamatialis, Dimitrios; Wetzels, J.F.; van der Heuvel, L.P.; Hoenderop, J.G.; Masereeuw, R.

    2016-01-01

    The development of a biotechnological platform for the removal of waste products (e.g. uremic toxins), often bound to proteins in plasma, is a prerequisite to improve current treatment modalities for patients suffering from end stage renal disease (ESRD). Here, we present a newly designed

  10. Treatment diary for botulinum toxin spasticity treatment

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Biering-Sørensen, Bo; Iversen, Helle K; Frederiksen, Inge M S

    2017-01-01

    The aim of this study is to develop a treatment diary for patients receiving spasticity treatment including botulinum toxin injection and physiotherapy and/or occupational therapy. The diary focuses on problems triggered by skeletal muscle overactivity; agreed goals for treatment and the patient...

  11. Diffusion, spread, and migration of botulinum toxin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ramirez-Castaneda, Juan; Jankovic, Joseph; Comella, Cynthia; Dashtipour, Khashayar; Fernandez, Hubert H; Mari, Zoltan

    2013-11-01

    Botulinum toxin (BoNT) is an acetylcholine release inhibitor and a neuromuscular blocking agent used for the treatment of a variety of neurologic and medical conditions. The efficacy and safety of BoNT depends on accurate selection and identification of intended targets but also may be determined by other factors, including physical spread of the molecule from the injection site, passive diffusion, and migration to distal sites via axonal or hematogenous transport. The passive kinetic dispersion of the toxin away from the injection site in a gradient-dependent manner may also play a role in toxin spread. In addition to unique properties of the various BoNT products, volume and dilution may also influence local and systemic distribution of BoNT. Most of the local and remote complications of BoNT injections are thought to be due to unwanted spread or diffusion of the toxin's biologic activity into adjacent and distal muscles. Despite widespread therapeutic and cosmetic use of BoNT over more than three decades, there is a remarkable paucity of published data on the mechanisms of distribution and its effects on clinical outcomes. The primary aim of this article is to critically review the available experimental and clinical literature and place it in the practical context. © 2013 International Parkinson and Movement Disorder Society.

  12. Mutant with diphtheria toxin receptor and acidification function but defective in entry of toxin

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kohno, Kenji; Hayes, H.; Mekada, Eisuke; Uchida, Tsuyoshi

    1987-01-01

    A mutant of Chinese hamster ovary cells, GE1, that is highly resistant to diphtheria toxin was isolated. The mutant contains 50% ADP-ribosylatable elongation factor 2, but its protein synthesis was not inhibited by the toxin even at concentrations above 100 μg/ml. 125 I-labeled diphtheria toxin was associated with GE1 cells as well as with the parent cells but did not block protein synthesis of GE1 cells even when the cells were exposed to low pH in the presence or absence of NH 4 Cl. The infections of GE1 cells and the parent cells by vesicular stomatitis virus were similar. GE1 cells were cross-resistant to Pseudomonas aeruginosa exotoxin A and so were about 1,000 times more resistant to this toxin than the parent cells. Hybrids of GE1 cells and the parent cells or mutant cells lacking a functional receptor were more sensitive to diphtheria toxin than GE1 cells. These results suggest that entry of diphtheria toxin into cells requires a cellular factor(s) in addition to those involved in receptor function and acidification of endosomes and that GE1 cells do not express this cellular factor. This character is recessive in GE1 cells

  13. Characterization of Hemagglutinin Negative Botulinum Progenitor Toxins

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Suzanne R. Kalb

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Botulism is a disease involving intoxication with botulinum neurotoxins (BoNTs, toxic proteins produced by Clostridium botulinum and other clostridia. The 150 kDa neurotoxin is produced in conjunction with other proteins to form the botulinum progenitor toxin complex (PTC, alternating in size from 300 kDa to 500 kDa. These progenitor complexes can be classified into hemagglutinin positive or hemagglutinin negative, depending on the ability of some of the neurotoxin-associated proteins (NAPs to cause hemagglutination. The hemagglutinin positive progenitor toxin complex consists of BoNT, nontoxic non-hemagglutinin (NTNH, and three hemagglutinin proteins; HA-70, HA-33, and HA-17. Hemagglutinin negative progenitor toxin complexes contain BoNT and NTNH as the minimally functional PTC (M-PTC, but not the three hemagglutinin proteins. Interestingly, the genome of hemagglutinin negative progenitor toxin complexes comprises open reading frames (orfs which encode for three proteins, but the existence of these proteins has not yet been extensively demonstrated. In this work, we demonstrate that these three proteins exist and form part of the PTC for hemagglutinin negative complexes. Several hemagglutinin negative strains producing BoNT/A, /E, and /F were found to contain the three open reading frame proteins. Additionally, several BoNT/A-containing bivalent strains were examined, and NAPs from both genes, including the open reading frame proteins, were associated with BoNT/A. The open reading frame encoded proteins are more easily removed from the botulinum complex than the hemagglutinin proteins, but are present in several BoNT/A and /F toxin preparations. These are not easily removed from the BoNT/E complex, however, and are present even in commercially-available purified BoNT/E complex.

  14. Evaluation of personal inhalable aerosol samplers with different filters for use during anthrax responses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grinshpun, Sergey A; Weber, Angela M; Yermakov, Michael; Indugula, Reshmi; Elmashae, Yousef; Reponen, Tiina; Rose, Laura

    2017-08-01

    Risk of inhalation exposure to viable Bacillus anthracis (B. anthracis) spores has primarily been assessed using short-term, stationary sampling methods which may not accurately characterize the concentration of inhalable-sized spores reaching a person's breathing zone. While a variety of aerosol sampling methods have been utilized during previous anthrax responses, no consensus has yet been established for personal air sampling. The goal of this study was to determine the best sampler-filter combination(s) for the collection and extraction of B. anthracis spores. The study was designed to (1) evaluate the performance of four filter types (one mixed cellulose ester, MCE (pore size = 3 µm), two polytetrafluoroethylene, PTFE (1 and 3 µm), and one polycarbonate, PC (3 µm)); and (2) evaluate the best performing filters in two commercially available inhalable aerosol samplers (IOM and Button). Bacillus thuringiensis kurstaki [Bt(k)], a simulant for B. anthracis, served as the aerosol challenge. The filters were assessed based on criteria such as ability to maintain low pressure drop over an extended sampling period, filter integrity under various environmental conditions, spore collection and extraction efficiencies, ease of loading and unloading the filters into the samplers, cost, and availability. Three of the four tested collection filters-except MCE-were found suitable for efficient collection and recovery of Bt(k) spores sampled from dry and humid as well as dusty and clean air environments for up to 8 hr. The PC (3 µm) filter was identified as the best performing filter in this study. The PTFE (3 µm) demonstrated a comparable performance, but it is more expensive. Slightly higher concentrations were measured with the IOM inhalable sampler which is the preferred sampler's performance criterion when detecting a highly pathogenic agent with no established "safe" inhalation exposure level. Additional studies are needed to address the effects of

  15. Discovery of novel bacterial toxins by genomics and computational biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Doxey, Andrew C; Mansfield, Michael J; Montecucco, Cesare

    2018-06-01

    Hundreds and hundreds of bacterial protein toxins are presently known. Traditionally, toxin identification begins with pathological studies of bacterial infectious disease. Following identification and cultivation of a bacterial pathogen, the protein toxin is purified from the culture medium and its pathogenic activity is studied using the methods of biochemistry and structural biology, cell biology, tissue and organ biology, and appropriate animal models, supplemented by bioimaging techniques. The ongoing and explosive development of high-throughput DNA sequencing and bioinformatic approaches have set in motion a revolution in many fields of biology, including microbiology. One consequence is that genes encoding novel bacterial toxins can be identified by bioinformatic and computational methods based on previous knowledge accumulated from studies of the biology and pathology of thousands of known bacterial protein toxins. Starting from the paradigmatic cases of diphtheria toxin, tetanus and botulinum neurotoxins, this review discusses traditional experimental approaches as well as bioinformatics and genomics-driven approaches that facilitate the discovery of novel bacterial toxins. We discuss recent work on the identification of novel botulinum-like toxins from genera such as Weissella, Chryseobacterium, and Enteroccocus, and the implications of these computationally identified toxins in the field. Finally, we discuss the promise of metagenomics in the discovery of novel toxins and their ecological niches, and present data suggesting the existence of uncharacterized, botulinum-like toxin genes in insect gut metagenomes. Copyright © 2018. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  16. Radioimmunoassay for yeast killer toxin from Saccharomyces cerevisiae

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Siddiqui, F.A.; Bussey, H.

    1981-01-01

    A radioimmunoassay was developed for the K1 killer toxin from strain T158C/S14a of Saccharomyces cerevisiae. Iodine 125-labelled toxin was made to a specific activity of 100 μCi/mg of protein. Antibody to purified toxin was prepared in rabbits using toxin cross-linked to itself. These antibodies, partially purified by 50 percent ammonium sulfate precipitation and Sepharose CL-6B column chromatography, produced one precipitation band with killer toxin and bound 125 I-labelled toxin in a radioimmunoassay. The antibody preparation also bound with the toxins from another K1 killer, A364A, and three chromosomal superkiller mutants derived from it. (auth)

  17. Binding of fluorescently labeled cholera toxin subunit B to glycolipids in the human submandibular gland and inhibition of binding by periodate oxidation and by galactose

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kirkeby, S

    2016-01-01

    FITC-labeled cholera toxin subunit B (CTB) stained the surfaces of cells of mucous acini in the submandibular gland. CTB, also called choleragenoid, binds to the GM1 glycolipid in the cell membrane. The binding in most acini was inhibited by periodic acid oxidation of the sections, while some acini...... to the internal galactose residue linked to GalNAc, as in the GM1 glycolipid. Inhibition of the GM1 receptor binding to cholera toxin has potential for protection of humans against cholera. Galactose and agents that modify sialic acid inhibit the accessibility of the toxin to the GM1 carbohydrate receptor. Human...

  18. General synthesis of β-alanine-containing spider polyamine toxins and discovery of nephila polyamine toxins 1 and 8 as highly potent inhibitors of ionotropic glutamate receptors

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lucas, Simon; Poulsen, Mette H; Nørager, Niels G

    2012-01-01

    Certain spiders contain large pools of polyamine toxins, which are putative pharmacological tools awaiting further discovery. Here we present a general synthesis strategy for this class of toxins and prepare five structurally varied polyamine toxins. Electrophysiological testing at three ionotrop...

  19. Botulinum Toxin: Pharmacology and Therapeutic Roles in Pain States.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Patil, Shilpadevi; Willett, Olga; Thompkins, Terin; Hermann, Robert; Ramanathan, Sathish; Cornett, Elyse M; Fox, Charles J; Kaye, Alan David

    2016-03-01

    Botulinum toxin, also known as Botox, is produced by Clostridium botulinum, a gram-positive anaerobic bacterium, and botulinum toxin injections are among the most commonly practiced cosmetic procedures in the USA. Although botulinum toxin is typically associated with cosmetic procedures, it can be used to treat a variety of other conditions, including pain. Botulinum toxin blocks the release of acetylcholine from nerve endings to paralyze muscles and to decrease the pain response. Botulinum toxin has a long duration of action, lasting up to 5 months after initial treatment which makes it an excellent treatment for chronic pain patients. This manuscript will outline in detail why botulinum toxin is used as a successful treatment for pain in multiple conditions as well as outline the risks associated with using botulinum toxin in certain individuals. As of today, the only FDA-approved chronic condition that botulinum toxin can be used to treat is migraines and this is related to its ability to decrease muscle tension and increase muscle relaxation. Contraindications to botulinum toxin treatments are limited to a hypersensitivity to the toxin or an infection at the site of injection, and there are no known drug interactions with botulinum toxin. Botulinum toxin is an advantageous and effective alternative pain treatment and a therapy to consider for those that do not respond to opioid treatment. In summary, botulinum toxin is a relatively safe and effective treatment for individuals with certain pain conditions, including migraines. More research is warranted to elucidate chronic and long-term implications of botulinum toxin treatment as well as effects in pregnant, elderly, and adolescent patients.

  20. Authentic display of a cholera toxin epitope by chimeric type 1 fimbriae: effects of insert position and host background

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Stentebjerg-Olesen, B; Pallesen, L; Jensen, LB

    1997-01-01

    The potential of the major structural protein of type 1 fimbriae as a display system for heterologous sequences was tested. As a reporter-epitope, a heterologous sequence mimicking a neutralizing epitope of the cholera toxin B chain was inserted, in one or two copies, into four different positions...... in the fimA gene. This was carried out by introduction of new restriction sites by PCR-mediated site-directed mutagenesis of fimA in positions predicted to correspond to optimally surface-located regions of the subunit protein. Subsequently, the synthetic cholera-toxin-encoding DNA segment was inserted....... Several of the chosen positions seemed amenable even for large foreign inserts; the chimeric proteins were exposed on the bacterial surface and the cholera toxin epitope was authentically displayed, i.e. it was recognized on bacteria by specific antiserum. Display of chimeric fimbriae was tested...

  1. Staphylococcal Bicomponent Pore-Forming Toxins: Targets for Prophylaxis and Immunotherapy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. Javad Aman

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available Staphylococccus aureus represents one of the most challenging human pathogens as well as a common colonizer of human skin and mucosal surfaces. S. aureus causes a wide range of diseases from skin and soft tissue infection (SSTI to debilitating and life-threatening conditions such as osteomyelitis, endocarditis, and necrotizing pneumonia. The range of diseases reflects the remarkable diversity of the virulence factors produced by this pathogen, including surface antigens involved in the establishment of infection and a large number of toxins that mediate a vast array of cellular responses. The staphylococcal toxins are generally believed to have evolved to disarm the innate immune system, the first line of defense against this pathogen. This review focuses on recent advances on elucidating the biological functions of S. aureus bicomponent pore-forming toxins (BCPFTs and their utility as targets for preventive and therapeutic intervention. These toxins are cytolytic to a variety of immune cells, primarily neutrophils, as well as cells with a critical barrier function. The lytic activity of BCPFTs towards immune cells implies a critical role in immune evasion, and a number of epidemiological studies and animal experiments relate these toxins to clinical disease, particularly SSTI and necrotizing pneumonia. Antibody-mediated neutralization of this lytic activity may provide a strategy for development of toxoid-based vaccines or immunotherapeutics for prevention or mitigation of clinical diseases. However, certain BCPFTs have been proposed to act as danger signals that may alert the immune system through an inflammatory response. The utility of a neutralizing vaccination strategy must be weighed against such immune-activating potential.

  2. Staphylococcal bicomponent pore-forming toxins: targets for prophylaxis and immunotherapy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aman, M Javad; Adhikari, Rajan P

    2014-03-04

    Staphylococccus aureus represents one of the most challenging human pathogens as well as a common colonizer of human skin and mucosal surfaces. S. aureus causes a wide range of diseases from skin and soft tissue infection (SSTI) to debilitating and life-threatening conditions such as osteomyelitis, endocarditis, and necrotizing pneumonia. The range of diseases reflects the remarkable diversity of the virulence factors produced by this pathogen, including surface antigens involved in the establishment of infection and a large number of toxins that mediate a vast array of cellular responses. The staphylococcal toxins are generally believed to have evolved to disarm the innate immune system, the first line of defense against this pathogen. This review focuses on recent advances on elucidating the biological functions of S. aureus bicomponent pore-forming toxins (BCPFTs) and their utility as targets for preventive and therapeutic intervention. These toxins are cytolytic to a variety of immune cells, primarily neutrophils, as well as cells with a critical barrier function. The lytic activity of BCPFTs towards immune cells implies a critical role in immune evasion, and a number of epidemiological studies and animal experiments relate these toxins to clinical disease, particularly SSTI and necrotizing pneumonia. Antibody-mediated neutralization of this lytic activity may provide a strategy for development of toxoid-based vaccines or immunotherapeutics for prevention or mitigation of clinical diseases. However, certain BCPFTs have been proposed to act as danger signals that may alert the immune system through an inflammatory response. The utility of a neutralizing vaccination strategy must be weighed against such immune-activating potential.

  3. Intracellular Signal Triggered by Cholera Toxin in Saccharomyces boulardii and Saccharomyces cerevisiae

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brandão, Rogelio L.; Castro, Ieso M.; Bambirra, Eduardo A.; Amaral, Sheila C.; Fietto, Luciano G.; Tropia, Maria José M.; Neves, Maria José; Dos Santos, Raquel G.; Gomes, Newton C. M.; Nicoli, Jacques R.

    1998-01-01

    As is the case for Saccharomyces boulardii, Saccharomyces cerevisiae W303 protects Fisher rats against cholera toxin (CT). The addition of glucose or dinitrophenol to cells of S. boulardii grown on a nonfermentable carbon source activated trehalase in a manner similar to that observed for S. cerevisiae. The addition of CT to the same cells also resulted in trehalase activation. Experiments performed separately on the A and B subunits of CT showed that both are necessary for activation. Similarly, the addition of CT but not of its separate subunits led to a cyclic AMP (cAMP) signal in both S. boulardii and S. cerevisiae. These data suggest that trehalase stimulation by CT probably occurred through the cAMP-mediated protein phosphorylation cascade. The requirement of CT subunit B for both the cAMP signal and trehalase activation indicates the presence of a specific receptor on the yeasts able to bind to the toxin, a situation similar to that observed for mammalian cells. This hypothesis was reinforced by experiments with 125I-labeled CT showing specific binding of the toxin to yeast cells. The adhesion of CT to a receptor on the yeast surface through the B subunit and internalization of the A subunit (necessary for the cAMP signal and trehalase activation) could be one more mechanism explaining protection against the toxin observed for rats treated with yeasts. PMID:9464394

  4. Effect of ozonation on the removal of cyanobacterial toxins during drinking water treatment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hoeger, Stefan J; Dietrich, Daniel R; Hitzfeld, Bettina C

    2002-01-01

    Water treatment plants faced with toxic cyanobacteria have to be able to remove cyanotoxins from raw water. In this study we investigated the efficacy of ozonation coupled with various filtration steps under different cyanobacterial bloom conditions. Cyanobacteria were ozonated in a laboratory-scale batch reactor modeled on a system used by a modern waterworks, with subsequent activated carbon and sand filtration steps. The presence of cyanobacterial toxins (microcystins) was determined using the protein phosphatase inhibition assay. We found that ozone concentrations of at least 1.5 mg/L were required to provide enough oxidation potential to destroy the toxin present in 5 X 10(5 )Microcystis aeruginosa cells/mL [total organic carbon (TOC), 1.56 mg/L]. High raw water TOC was shown to reduce the efficiency of free toxin oxidation and destruction. In addition, ozonation of raw waters containing high cyanobacteria cell densities will result in cell lysis and liberation of intracellular toxins. Thus, we emphasize that only regular and simultaneous monitoring of TOC/dissolved organic carbon and cyanobacterial cell densities, in conjunction with online residual O(3) concentration determination and efficient filtration steps, can ensure the provision of safe drinking water from surface waters contaminated with toxic cyanobacterial blooms. PMID:12417484

  5. One-pot synthesis of strongly fluorescent DNA-CuInS2 quantum dots for label-free and ultrasensitive detection of anthrax lethal factor DNA

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Liu, Ziping; Su, Xingguang

    2016-01-01

    Herein, high quality DNA-CuInS 2 QDs are facilely synthesized through a one-pot hydrothermal method with fluorescence quantum yield as high as 23.4%, and the strongly fluorescent DNA-CuInS 2 QDs have been utilized as a novel fluorescent biosensor for label-free and ultrasensitive detection of anthrax lethal factor DNA. L-Cysteine (L-Cys) and a specific-sequence DNA are used as co-ligands to stabilize the CuInS 2 QDs. The specific-sequence DNA consists of two domains: phosphorothiolates domain (sulfur-containing variants of the usual phosphodiester backbone) controls the nanocrystal passivation and serves as a ligand, and the functional domain (non-phosphorothioates) controls the biorecognition. The as-prepared DNA-CuInS 2 QDs have high stability, good water-solubility and low toxicity. Under the optimized conditions, a linear correlation was established between the fluorescence intensity ratio I/I 0 (I 0 is the original fluorescence intensity of DNA-CuInS 2 QDs, and I is the fluorescence intensity of DNA-CuInS 2 QDs/GO with the addition of various concentrations of anthrax lethal factor DNA) and the concentration of anthrax lethal factor DNA in the range of 0.029–0.733 nmol L −1 with a detection limit of 0.013 nmol L −1 . The proposed method has been successfully applied to the determination of anthrax lethal factor DNA sequence in human serum samples with satisfactory results. Because of low toxicity and fine biocompatibility, DNA-CuInS 2 QDs also hold potential applications in bioimaging. - Highlights: • Strongly fluorescent DNA-QDs were successfully prepared by a one-pot hydrothermal method with quantum yield up to 23.4%. • A biosensor for label-free detection of anthrax lethal factor DNA was established based on the as-prepared DNA-QDs. • The DNA sensor took advantage of the feature that ssDNA binds to GO with significantly higher affinity than dsDNA. • Good sensitivity and selectivity were obtained. • This method was utilized to detect

  6. One-pot synthesis of strongly fluorescent DNA-CuInS{sub 2} quantum dots for label-free and ultrasensitive detection of anthrax lethal factor DNA

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Liu, Ziping; Su, Xingguang, E-mail: suxg@jlu.edu.cn

    2016-10-26

    Herein, high quality DNA-CuInS{sub 2} QDs are facilely synthesized through a one-pot hydrothermal method with fluorescence quantum yield as high as 23.4%, and the strongly fluorescent DNA-CuInS{sub 2} QDs have been utilized as a novel fluorescent biosensor for label-free and ultrasensitive detection of anthrax lethal factor DNA. L-Cysteine (L-Cys) and a specific-sequence DNA are used as co-ligands to stabilize the CuInS{sub 2} QDs. The specific-sequence DNA consists of two domains: phosphorothiolates domain (sulfur-containing variants of the usual phosphodiester backbone) controls the nanocrystal passivation and serves as a ligand, and the functional domain (non-phosphorothioates) controls the biorecognition. The as-prepared DNA-CuInS{sub 2} QDs have high stability, good water-solubility and low toxicity. Under the optimized conditions, a linear correlation was established between the fluorescence intensity ratio I/I{sub 0} (I{sub 0} is the original fluorescence intensity of DNA-CuInS{sub 2} QDs, and I is the fluorescence intensity of DNA-CuInS{sub 2} QDs/GO with the addition of various concentrations of anthrax lethal factor DNA) and the concentration of anthrax lethal factor DNA in the range of 0.029–0.733 nmol L{sup −1} with a detection limit of 0.013 nmol L{sup −1}. The proposed method has been successfully applied to the determination of anthrax lethal factor DNA sequence in human serum samples with satisfactory results. Because of low toxicity and fine biocompatibility, DNA-CuInS{sub 2} QDs also hold potential applications in bioimaging. - Highlights: • Strongly fluorescent DNA-QDs were successfully prepared by a one-pot hydrothermal method with quantum yield up to 23.4%. • A biosensor for label-free detection of anthrax lethal factor DNA was established based on the as-prepared DNA-QDs. • The DNA sensor took advantage of the feature that ssDNA binds to GO with significantly higher affinity than dsDNA. • Good sensitivity and selectivity were

  7. [Efficacy of enterocin S760 in treatment of mice with anthrax infection due to Bacillus anthracis M-71].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Svetoch, E A; Borzilov, A I; Eruslanov, B V; Korobova, O V; Kombarova, T I; Levchuk, V P; Teĭmurazov, M G; Stepanshin, Iu G; Marinin, L I; Diatlov, I A

    2011-01-01

    The therapeutic efficacy of enterocin S760, a broad spectrum antimicrobial peptide produced by Enterococcus faecium LWP760 was tested on mice infected with Bacillus anthracis M-71 to induce anthrax (second Tsenkovsky's vaccine). Intraperitoneal four-, two- or one-fold administration of the peptide in a dose of 25 mg/kg for 10 days for prophylactic (1 hour after the contamination) and therapeutic (24 hours after the contamination) purposes prevented or cured the infection in 90-100% of the mice versus the 100-percent lethality in the control (untreated animals). The antimicrobial activity of enterocin S760 against B. anthracis M-71 in vivo correlated with activity in vitro. Enterocin S760 is considered a novel promising antimicrobial for the treatment of grampositive and gramnegative infections.

  8. Toxins for Transgenic Resistance to Hemipteran Pests

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chougule, Nanasaheb P.; Bonning, Bryony C.

    2012-01-01

    The sap sucking insects (Hemiptera), which include aphids, whiteflies, plant bugs and stink bugs, have emerged as major agricultural pests. The Hemiptera cause direct damage by feeding on crops, and in some cases indirect damage by transmission of plant viruses. Current management relies almost exclusively on application of classical chemical insecticides. While the development of transgenic crops expressing toxins derived from the bacterium Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt) has provided effective plant protection against some insect pests, Bt toxins exhibit little toxicity against sap sucking insects. Indeed, the pest status of some Hemiptera on Bt-transgenic plants has increased in the absence of pesticide application. The increased pest status of numerous hemipteran species, combined with increased prevalence of resistance to chemical insecticides, provides impetus for the development of biologically based, alternative management strategies. Here, we provide an overview of approaches toward transgenic resistance to hemipteran pests. PMID:22822455

  9. Addressing the Federal-State-Local Interface Issues During a Catastrophic Event Such as an Anthrax Attack

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Stein, Steven L.; Lesperance, Ann M.; Upton, Jaki F.

    2010-02-01

    On October 9, 2008, federal, state and local policy makers, emergency managers, and medical and public health officials convened in Seattle, Washington, for a workshop on Addressing the Federal-State-Local Interface Issues During a Catastrophic Event Such as an Anthrax Attack. The day-long symposium was aimed at generating a dialogue about recovery and restoration through a discussion of the associated challenges that impact entire communities, including people, infrastructure, and critical systems. The Principal Federal Official (PFO) provided an overview of the role of the PFO in a catastrophic event. A high-level summary of an anthrax scenario was presented. The remainder of the day was focused on interactive discussions among federal, state and local emergency management experts in the areas of: • Decision-making, prioritization, and command and control • Public health/medical services • Community resiliency and continuity of government. Key topics and issues that resulted from discussions included: • Local representation in the Joint Field Office (JFO) • JFO transition to the Long-Term Recovery Office • Process for prioritization of needs • Process for regional coordination • Prioritization - process and federal/military intervention • Allocation of limited resources • Re-entry decision and consistency • Importance of maintaining a healthy hospital system • Need for a process to establish a consensus on when it is safe to re-enter. This needs to be across all jurisdictions including the military. • Insurance coverage for both private businesses and individuals • Interaction between the government and industry. The symposium was sponsored by the Interagency Biological Restoration Demonstration, a collaborative regional program jointly funded by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security and the U.S. Department of Defense. To aid the program’s efforts and inform the development of blueprint for recovery from a biological incident

  10. Photocatalytic Cellulosic Electrospun Fibers for the Degradation of Potent Cyanobacteria Toxin Microcystin-LR

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-01-01

    visible light activated or UV light activated), the surface area of the fiber mat, and loading solution pH all have an effect on the distribution of...photocatalysis with nanoparticles (such as titania, TiO2 ) show tremendous promise as a simple and energy efficient tech- nology for water purification and...LR (MC-LR). MC- LR is one of the most commonly found cyanobacteria toxins generated by the more frequently occurring cyanobacteria algae blooms in

  11. Therapeutic Approaches of Botulinum Toxin in Gynecology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moga, Marius Alexandru; Dimienescu, Oana Gabriela; Bălan, Andreea; Scârneciu, Ioan; Barabaș, Barna; Pleș, Liana

    2018-04-21

    Botulinum toxins (BoNTs) are produced by several anaerobic species of the genus Clostridium and, although they were originally considered lethal toxins, today they find their usefulness in the treatment of a wide range of pathologies in various medical specialties. Botulinum neurotoxin has been identified in seven different isoforms (BoNT-A, BoNT-B, BoNT-C, BoNT-D, BoNT-E, BoNT-F, and BoNT-G). Neurotoxigenic Clostridia can produce more than 40 different BoNT subtypes and, recently, a new BoNT serotype (BoNT-X) has been reported in some studies. BoNT-X has not been shown to actually be an active neurotoxin despite its catalytically active LC, so it should be described as a putative eighth serotype. The mechanism of action of the serotypes is similar: they inhibit the release of acetylcholine from the nerve endings but their therapeutically potency varies. Botulinum toxin type A (BoNT-A) is the most studied serotype for therapeutic purposes. Regarding the gynecological pathology, a series of studies based on the efficiency of its use in the treatment of refractory myofascial pelvic pain, vaginism, dyspareunia, vulvodynia and overactive bladder or urinary incontinence have been reported. The current study is a review of the literature regarding the efficiency of BoNT-A in the gynecological pathology and on the long and short-term effects of its administration.

  12. Therapeutic Approaches of Botulinum Toxin in Gynecology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marius Alexandru Moga

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available Botulinum toxins (BoNTs are produced by several anaerobic species of the genus Clostridium and, although they were originally considered lethal toxins, today they find their usefulness in the treatment of a wide range of pathologies in various medical specialties. Botulinum neurotoxin has been identified in seven different isoforms (BoNT-A, BoNT-B, BoNT-C, BoNT-D, BoNT-E, BoNT-F, and BoNT-G. Neurotoxigenic Clostridia can produce more than 40 different BoNT subtypes and, recently, a new BoNT serotype (BoNT-X has been reported in some studies. BoNT-X has not been shown to actually be an active neurotoxin despite its catalytically active LC, so it should be described as a putative eighth serotype. The mechanism of action of the serotypes is similar: they inhibit the release of acetylcholine from the nerve endings but their therapeutically potency varies. Botulinum toxin type A (BoNT-A is the most studied serotype for therapeutic purposes. Regarding the gynecological pathology, a series of studies based on the efficiency of its use in the treatment of refractory myofascial pelvic pain, vaginism, dyspareunia, vulvodynia and overactive bladder or urinary incontinence have been reported. The current study is a review of the literature regarding the efficiency of BoNT-A in the gynecological pathology and on the long and short-term effects of its administration.

  13. Effects of hydrogen peroxide and ultrasound on biomass reduction and toxin release in the cyanobacterium, microcystis aeruginosa

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Lurling, M.F.L.L.W.; Meng, D.; Faassen, E.J.

    2014-01-01

    Cyanobacterial blooms are expected to increase, and the toxins they produce threaten human health and impair ecosystem services. The reduction of the nutrient load of surface waters is the preferred way to prevent these blooms; however, this is not always feasible. Quick curative measures are

  14. Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli in meat: a preliminary simulation study on detection capabilities for three sampling methods

    Science.gov (United States)

    The objective of this simulation study is to determine which sampling method (Cozzini core sampler, core drill shaving, and N-60 surface excision) will better detect Shiga Toxin-producing Escherichia coli (STEC) at varying levels of contamination when present in the meat. 1000 simulated experiments...

  15. [Botulinum toxin: An important complement for facial rejuvenation surgery].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Le Louarn, C

    2017-10-01

    The improved understanding of the functional anatomy of the face and of the action of the botulinum toxin A leads us to determine a new injection procedure which consequently decreases the risk of eyebrow and eyelid ptosis and increases the toxin's injection possibilities and efficiencies. With less units of toxin, the technique herein described proposes to be more efficient on more muscles: variable toxin injections concentration adapted to each injected muscle are used. Thanks to a new procedure in the upper face, toxin A injection can be quite close to an endoscopic surgical action. In addition, interesting results are achievable to rejuvenate the lateral canthus with injection on the upper lateral tarsus, to rejuvenate the nose with injection at the alar base, the jawline and the neck region. Lastly, a smoothing effect on the skin (meso botox) is obtained by the anticholinergic action of the toxin A on the dermal receptors. Copyright © 2017. Published by Elsevier Masson SAS.

  16. AB toxins: a paradigm switch from deadly to desirable.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Odumosu, Oludare; Nicholas, Dequina; Yano, Hiroshi; Langridge, William

    2010-07-01

    To ensure their survival, a number of bacterial and plant species have evolved a common strategy to capture energy from other biological systems. Being imperfect pathogens, organisms synthesizing multi-subunit AB toxins are responsible for the mortality of millions of people and animals annually. Vaccination against these organisms and their toxins has proved rather ineffective in providing long-term protection from disease. In response to the debilitating effects of AB toxins on epithelial cells of the digestive mucosa, mechanisms underlying toxin immunomodulation of immune responses have become the focus of increasing experimentation. The results of these studies reveal that AB toxins may have a beneficial application as adjuvants for the enhancement of immune protection against infection and autoimmunity. Here, we examine similarities and differences in the structure and function of bacterial and plant AB toxins that underlie their toxicity and their exceptional properties as immunomodulators for stimulating immune responses against infectious disease and for immune suppression of organ-specific autoimmunity.

  17. Recent Insights into Clostridium perfringens Beta-Toxin

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Masahiro Nagahama

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available Clostridium perfringens beta-toxin is a key mediator of necrotizing enterocolitis and enterotoxemia. It is a pore-forming toxin (PFT that exerts cytotoxic effect. Experimental investigation using piglet and rabbit intestinal loop models and a mouse infection model apparently showed that beta-toxin is the important pathogenic factor of the organisms. The toxin caused the swelling and disruption of HL-60 cells and formed a functional pore in the lipid raft microdomains of sensitive cells. These findings represent significant progress in the characterization of the toxin with knowledge on its biological features, mechanism of action and structure-function having been accumulated. Our aims here are to review the current progresses in our comprehension of the virulence of C. perfringens type C and the character, biological feature and structure-function of beta-toxin.

  18. A Retrospective Study on the Epidemiology of Anthrax, Foot and Mouth Disease, Haemorrhagic Septicaemia, Peste des Petits Ruminants and Rabies in Bangladesh, 2010-2012

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mondal, Shankar P.; Yamage, Mat

    2014-01-01

    Anthrax, foot and mouth disease (FMD), haemorrhagic septicaemia (HS), peste des petits ruminants (PPR) and rabies are considered to be endemic in Bangladesh. This retrospective study was conducted to understand the geographic and seasonal distribution of these major infectious diseases in livestock based on data collected through passive surveillance from 1 January 2010 to 31 December 2012. Data analysis for this period revealed 5,937 cases of anthrax, 300,333 of FMD, 13,436 of HS, 247,783 of PPR and 14,085 cases of dog bite/rabies. While diseases were reported in almost every district of the country, the highest frequency of occurrence corresponded to the susceptible livestock population in the respective districts. There was no significant difference in the disease occurrences between districts bordering India/Myanmar and non-border districts (p>0.05). Significantly higher (pBangladesh. PMID:25101836

  19. Perturbing Tandem Energy Transfer in Luminescent Heterobinuclear Lanthanide Coordination Polymer Nanoparticles Enables Real-Time Monitoring of Release of the Anthrax Biomarker from Bacterial Spores.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gao, Nan; Zhang, Yunfang; Huang, Pengcheng; Xiang, Zhehao; Wu, Fang-Ying; Mao, Lanqun

    2018-06-05

    Lanthanide-based luminescent sensors have been widely used for the detection of the anthrax biomarker dipicolinic acid (DPA). However, mainly based on DPA sensitization to the lanthanide core, most of them failed to realize robust detection of DPA in bacterial spores. We proposed a new strategy for reliable detection of DPA by perturbing a tandem energy transfer in heterobinuclear lanthanide coordination polymer nanoparticles simply constructed by two kinds of lanthanide ions, Tb 3+ and Eu 3+ , and guanosine 5'-monophosphate. This smart luminescent probe was demonstrated to exhibit highly sensitive and selective visual luminescence color change upon exposure to DPA, enabling accurate detection of DPA in complex biosystems such as bacterial spores. DPA release from bacterial spores on physiological germination was also successfully monitored in real time by confocal imaging. This probe is thus expected to be a powerful tool for efficient detection of bacterial spores in responding to anthrax threats.

  20. Cnidarian Toxins Acting on Voltage-Gated Ion Channels

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Robert M. Greenberg

    2006-04-01

    Full Text Available Abstract: Voltage-gated ion channels generate electrical activity in excitable cells. As such, they are essential components of neuromuscular and neuronal systems, and are targeted by toxins from a wide variety of phyla, including the cnidarians. Here, we review cnidarian toxins known to target voltage-gated ion channels, the specific channel types targeted, and, where known, the sites of action of cnidarian toxins on different channels.

  1. Bacterial toxin-antitoxin systems: more than selfish entities?

    OpenAIRE

    Laurence Van Melderen; Manuel Saavedra De Bast

    2009-01-01

    Bacterial toxin?antitoxin (TA) systems are diverse and widespread in the prokaryotic kingdom. They are composed of closely linked genes encoding a stable toxin that can harm the host cell and its cognate labile antitoxin, which protects the host from the toxin's deleterious effect. TA systems are thought to invade bacterial genomes through horizontal gene transfer. Some TA systems might behave as selfish elements and favour their own maintenance at the expense of their host. As a consequence,...

  2. Military Importance of Natural Toxins and Their Analogs

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vladimír Pitschmann

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available Toxin weapon research, development, production and the ban on its uses is an integral part of international law, with particular attention paid to the protection against these weapons. In spite of this, hazards associated with toxins cannot be completely excluded. Some of these hazards are also pointed out in the present review. The article deals with the characteristics and properties of natural toxins and synthetic analogs potentially constituting the basis of toxin weapons. It briefly describes the history of military research and the use of toxins from distant history up to the present age. With respect to effective disarmament conventions, it mentions certain contemporary concepts of possible toxin applications for military purposes and the protection of public order (suppression of riots; it also briefly refers to the question of terrorism. In addition, it deals with certain traditional as well as modern technologies of the research, synthesis, and use of toxins, which can affect the continuing development of toxin weapons. These are, for example, cases of new toxins from natural sources, their chemical synthesis, production of synthetic analogs, the possibility of using methods of genetic engineering and modern biotechnologies or the possible applications of nanotechnology and certain pharmaceutical methods for the effective transfer of toxins into the organism. The authors evaluate the military importance of toxins based on their comparison with traditional chemical warfare agents. They appeal to the ethics of the scientific work as a principal condition for the prevention of toxin abuse in wars, military conflicts, as well as in non-military attacks.

  3. Staphylococcus aureus α-Toxin: Nearly a Century of Intrigue

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bryan J. Berube

    2013-06-01

    Full Text Available Staphylococcus aureus secretes a number of host-injurious toxins, among the most prominent of which is the small β-barrel pore-forming toxin α-hemolysin. Initially named based on its properties as a red blood cell lytic toxin, early studies suggested a far greater complexity of α-hemolysin action as nucleated cells also exhibited distinct responses to intoxication. The hemolysin, most aptly referred to as α-toxin based on its broad range of cellular specificity, has long been recognized as an important cause of injury in the context of both skin necrosis and lethal infection. The recent identification of ADAM10 as a cellular receptor for α-toxin has provided keen insight on the biology of toxin action during disease pathogenesis, demonstrating the molecular mechanisms by which the toxin causes tissue barrier disruption at host interfaces lined by epithelial or endothelial cells. This review highlights both the historical studies that laid the groundwork for nearly a century of research on α-toxin and key findings on the structural and functional biology of the toxin, in addition to discussing emerging observations that have significantly expanded our understanding of this toxin in S. aureus disease. The identification of ADAM10 as a proteinaceous receptor for the toxin not only provides a greater appreciation of truths uncovered by many historic studies, but now affords the opportunity to more extensively probe and understand the role of α-toxin in modulation of the complex interaction of S. aureus with its human host.

  4. Production of T-2 toxin and deoxynivalenol in the presence of different disinfectants

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dana Hrubošová

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available The aim of the work was to examine the effect of different disinfectants on production trichothecenes (especially of T-2 toxin and deoxynivalenol. Lipophilicity, chemical structure, the presence of bioactive groups and functional groups in their structure modifies biological activity and toxic potency of trichothecenes. For this reason, limits have been established designating maximum levels of mycotoxins in cereals while maintaining proper growing practices. Appropriate nutritive media were prepared with different concentration of tested disinfectants (Desanal A  plus, ProCura spray and Guaa-Pool and were inoculated using  Fusarium strains. The density of  Fusarium was 105 spores per mililitre. Nutrient media was cultivated at 15 °C and 25 °C for seven days. The strains of Fusarium graminearum CCM F-683 and Fusarium species (isolated from barley produced quantities of deoxynivalenol. Fusarium poae CCM F-584 and Fusarium species (isolated from malthouse air produced quantities of T-2 toxin. Desanal A plus prevented Fusarium growth and production of T-2 toxin and deoxynivalenol at the concentration 10%. It is an alkaline disinfectant on the basis of active chlorine and the surfactant that contains ˂5% of NaClO. ProCura spray at the concentration 0.6% proved to be very effective. This disinfectant contains 35% of propan-1-ol and 25% of propan-2-ol.  Guaa-Pool at the concentration 0.004% proved to be very effective. It is a polymeric disinfectant with anion surface-acting agent and it contains ˂0.9% of polyhexamethylene guanidine hydrochloride and ˂0.2% of alkyl (C12-C16 dimethylbenzyl ammonium chloride. Lower contentration of  disinfectants that  not prevented growth of Fusarium caused higher production  of T-2 toxin and deoxynivalenol. The contents of T-2 toxin and deoxynivalenol were analyzed by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA using commercially produced kits (Agra Quant® Deoxynivalenol Test kit and Agra Quant® T-2 toxin

  5. Toxins That Affect Voltage-Gated Sodium Channels.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ji, Yonghua

    2017-10-26

    Voltage-gated sodium channels (VGSCs) are critical in generation and conduction of electrical signals in multiple excitable tissues. Natural toxins, produced by animal, plant, and microorganisms, target VGSCs through diverse strategies developed over millions of years of evolutions. Studying of the diverse interaction between VGSC and VGSC-targeting toxins has been contributing to the increasing understanding of molecular structure and function, pharmacology, and drug development potential of VGSCs. This chapter aims to summarize some of the current views on the VGSC-toxin interaction based on the established receptor sites of VGSC for natural toxins.

  6. Temperature Effects Explain Continental Scale Distribution of Cyanobacterial Toxins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mantzouki, Evanthia; Lürling, Miquel; Fastner, Jutta; de Senerpont Domis, Lisette; Wilk-Woźniak, Elżbieta; Koreivienė, Judita; Seelen, Laura; Teurlincx, Sven; Verstijnen, Yvon; Krztoń, Wojciech; Walusiak, Edward; Karosienė, Jūratė; Kasperovičienė, Jūratė; Savadova, Ksenija; Vitonytė, Irma; Cillero-Castro, Carmen; Budzyńska, Agnieszka; Goldyn, Ryszard; Kozak, Anna; Rosińska, Joanna; Szeląg-Wasielewska, Elżbieta; Domek, Piotr; Jakubowska-Krepska, Natalia; Kwasizur, Kinga; Messyasz, Beata; Pełechaty, Aleksandra; Pełechaty, Mariusz; Kokocinski, Mikolaj; García-Murcia, Ana; Real, Monserrat; Romans, Elvira; Noguero-Ribes, Jordi; Duque, David Parreño; Fernández-Morán, Elísabeth; Karakaya, Nusret; Häggqvist, Kerstin; Demir, Nilsun; Beklioğlu, Meryem; Filiz, Nur; Levi, Eti E.; Iskin, Uğur; Bezirci, Gizem; Tavşanoğlu, Ülkü Nihan; Özhan, Koray; Gkelis, Spyros; Panou, Manthos; Fakioglu, Özden; Avagianos, Christos; Kaloudis, Triantafyllos; Çelik, Kemal; Yilmaz, Mete; Marcé, Rafael; Catalán, Nuria; Bravo, Andrea G.; Buck, Moritz; Colom-Montero, William; Mustonen, Kristiina; Pierson, Don; Yang, Yang; Raposeiro, Pedro M.; Gonçalves, Vítor; Antoniou, Maria G.; Tsiarta, Nikoletta; McCarthy, Valerie; Perello, Victor C.; Feldmann, Tõnu; Laas, Alo; Panksep, Kristel; Tuvikene, Lea; Gagala, Ilona; Mankiewicz-Boczek, Joana; Yağcı, Meral Apaydın; Çınar, Şakir; Çapkın, Kadir; Yağcı, Abdulkadir; Cesur, Mehmet; Bilgin, Fuat; Bulut, Cafer; Uysal, Rahmi; Obertegger, Ulrike; Boscaini, Adriano; Flaim, Giovanna; Salmaso, Nico; Cerasino, Leonardo; Richardson, Jessica; Visser, Petra M.; Verspagen, Jolanda M. H.; Karan, Tünay; Soylu, Elif Neyran; Maraşlıoğlu, Faruk; Napiórkowska-Krzebietke, Agnieszka; Ochocka, Agnieszka; Pasztaleniec, Agnieszka; Antão-Geraldes, Ana M.; Vasconcelos, Vitor; Morais, João; Vale, Micaela; Köker, Latife; Akçaalan, Reyhan; Albay, Meriç; Špoljarić Maronić, Dubravka; Stević, Filip; Žuna Pfeiffer, Tanja; Fonvielle, Jeremy; Straile, Dietmar; Rothhaupt, Karl-Otto; Hansson, Lars-Anders; Urrutia-Cordero, Pablo; Bláha, Luděk; Geriš, Rodan; Fránková, Markéta; Koçer, Mehmet Ali Turan; Alp, Mehmet Tahir; Remec-Rekar, Spela; Elersek, Tina; Triantis, Theodoros; Zervou, Sevasti-Kiriaki; Hiskia, Anastasia; Haande, Sigrid; Skjelbred, Birger; Madrecka, Beata; Nemova, Hana; Drastichova, Iveta; Chomova, Lucia; Edwards, Christine; Sevindik, Tuğba Ongun; Tunca, Hatice; Önem, Burçin; Aleksovski, Boris; Krstić, Svetislav; Vucelić, Itana Bokan; Nawrocka, Lidia; Salmi, Pauliina; Machado-Vieira, Danielle; de Oliveira, Alinne Gurjão; Delgado-Martín, Jordi; García, David; Cereijo, Jose Luís; Gomà, Joan; Trapote, Mari Carmen; Vegas-Vilarrúbia, Teresa; Obrador, Biel; Grabowska, Magdalena; Karpowicz, Maciej; Chmura, Damian; Úbeda, Bárbara; Gálvez, José Ángel; Özen, Arda; Christoffersen, Kirsten Seestern; Warming, Trine Perlt; Kobos, Justyna; Mazur-Marzec, Hanna; Pérez-Martínez, Carmen; Ramos-Rodríguez, Eloísa; Arvola, Lauri; Alcaraz-Párraga, Pablo; Toporowska, Magdalena; Pawlik-Skowronska, Barbara; Niedźwiecki, Michał; Pęczuła, Wojciech; Leira, Manel; Hernández, Armand; Moreno-Ostos, Enrique; Blanco, José María; Rodríguez, Valeriano; Montes-Pérez, Jorge Juan; Palomino, Roberto L.; Rodríguez-Pérez, Estela; Carballeira, Rafael; Camacho, Antonio; Picazo, Antonio; Rochera, Carlos; Santamans, Anna C.; Ferriol, Carmen; Romo, Susana; Soria, Juan Miguel; Dunalska, Julita; Sieńska, Justyna; Szymański, Daniel; Kruk, Marek; Kostrzewska-Szlakowska, Iwona; Jasser, Iwona; Žutinić, Petar; Gligora Udovič, Marija; Plenković-Moraj, Anđelka; Frąk, Magdalena; Bańkowska-Sobczak, Agnieszka; Wasilewicz, Michał; Özkan, Korhan; Maliaka, Valentini; Kangro, Kersti; Grossart, Hans-Peter; Paerl, Hans W.; Carey, Cayelan C.; Ibelings, Bas W.

    2018-04-13

    Insight into how environmental change determines the production and distribution of cyanobacterial toxins is necessary for risk assessment. Management guidelines currently focus on hepatotoxins (microcystins). Increasing attention is given to other classes, such as neurotoxins (e.g., anatoxin-a) and cytotoxins (e.g., cylindrospermopsin) due to their potency. Most studies examine the relationship between individual toxin variants and environmental factors, such as nutrients, temperature and light. In summer 2015, we collected samples across Europe to investigate the effect of nutrient and temperature gradients on the variability of toxin production at a continental scale. Direct and indirect effects of temperature were the main drivers of the spatial distribution in the toxins produced by the cyanobacterial community, the toxin concentrations and toxin quota. Generalized linear models showed that a Toxin Diversity Index (TDI) increased with latitude, while it decreased with water stability. Increases in TDI were explained through a significant increase in toxin variants such as MC-YR, anatoxin and cylindrospermopsin, accompanied by a decreasing presence of MC-LR. While global warming continues, the direct and indirect effects of increased lake temperatures will drive changes in the distribution of cyanobacterial toxins in Europe, potentially promoting selection of a few highly toxic species or strains.

  7. Botulinum toxin for treatment of glandular hypersecretory disorders.

    LENUS (Irish Health Repository)

    Laing, T A

    2012-02-03

    SUMMARY: The use of botulinum toxin to treat disorders of the salivary glands is increasing in popularity in recent years. Recent reports of the use of botulinum toxin in glandular hypersecretion suggest overall favourable results with minimal side-effects. However, few randomised clinical trials means that data are limited with respect to candidate suitability, treatment dosages, frequency and duration of treatment. We report a selection of such cases from our own department managed with botulinum toxin and review the current data on use of the toxin to treat salivary gland disorders such as Frey\\'s syndrome, excessive salivation (sialorrhoea), focal and general hyperhidrosis, excessive lacrimation and chronic rhinitis.

  8. Gene therapy for carcinoma of the breast: Genetic toxins

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Vassaux, Georges; Lemoine, Nick R

    2000-01-01

    Gene therapy was initially envisaged as a potential treatment for genetically inherited, monogenic disorders. The applications of gene therapy have now become wider, however, and include cardiovascular diseases, vaccination and cancers in which conventional therapies have failed. With regard to oncology, various gene therapy approaches have been developed. Among them, the use of genetic toxins to kill cancer cells selectively is emerging. Two different types of genetic toxins have been developed so far: the metabolic toxins and the dominant-negative class of toxins. This review describes these two different approaches, and discusses their potential applications in cancer gene therapy

  9. Temperature Effects Explain Continental Scale Distribution of Cyanobacterial Toxins

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Evanthia Mantzouki

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available Insight into how environmental change determines the production and distribution of cyanobacterial toxins is necessary for risk assessment. Management guidelines currently focus on hepatotoxins (microcystins. Increasing attention is given to other classes, such as neurotoxins (e.g., anatoxin-a and cytotoxins (e.g., cylindrospermopsin due to their potency. Most studies examine the relationship between individual toxin variants and environmental factors, such as nutrients, temperature and light. In summer 2015, we collected samples across Europe to investigate the effect of nutrient and temperature gradients on the variability of toxin production at a continental scale. Direct and indirect effects of temperature were the main drivers of the spatial distribution in the toxins produced by the cyanobacterial community, the toxin concentrations and toxin quota. Generalized linear models showed that a Toxin Diversity Index (TDI increased with latitude, while it decreased with water stability. Increases in TDI were explained through a significant increase in toxin variants such as MC-YR, anatoxin and cylindrospermopsin, accompanied by a decreasing presence of MC-LR. While global warming continues, the direct and indirect effects of increased lake temperatures will drive changes in the distribution of cyanobacterial toxins in Europe, potentially promoting selection of a few highly toxic species or strains.

  10. Dysport: pharmacological properties and factors that influence toxin action.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pickett, Andy

    2009-10-01

    The pharmacological properties of Dysport that influence toxin action are reviewed and compared with other botulinum toxin products. In particular, the subject of diffusion is examined and discussed based upon the evidence that currently exists, both from laboratory studies and from clinical data. Diffusion of botulinum toxin products is not related to the size of the toxin complex in the product since the complex dissociates under physiological conditions, releasing the naked neurotoxin to act. The active neurotoxin in Type A products is the same and therefore diffusion is equal when equal doses are administered.

  11. The Uremic Toxin Acrolein Promotes Suicidal Erythrocyte Death

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mohamed Siyabeldin E. Ahmed

    2013-05-01

    Full Text Available Background: Anemia is a major complication of end stage renal disease. The anemia is mainly the result of impaired formation of erythrocytes due to lack of erythropoietin and iron deficiency. Compelling evidence, however, points to the contribution of accelerated erythrocyte death, which decreases the life span of circulating erythrocytes. Erythrocytes may enter suicidal death or eryptosis, which is characterized by cell shrinkage and by cell membrane scrambling with phosphatidylserine-exposure at the erythrocyte surface. Triggers of eryptosis include increase of cytosolic Ca2+-activity ([Ca2+]i. Erythrocytes could be sensitized to cytosolic Ca2+ by ceramide. In end stage renal disease, eryptosis may possibly be stimulated by uremic toxins. The present study explored, whether the uremic toxin acrolein could trigger eryptosis. Methods: Cell volume was estimated from forward scatter, phosphatidylserine-exposure from annexin-V-binding, hemolysis from hemoglobin release, [Ca2+]i from Fluo3-fluorescence, and ceramide from fluorescent antibodies. Results: A 48 h exposure to acrolein (30 - 50 µM did not significantly modify [Ca2+]i but significantly decreased forward scatter and increased annexin-V-binding. Acrolein further triggered slight, but significant hemolysis and increased ceramide formation in erythrocytes. Acrolein (50 µM induced annexin-V-binding was significantly blunted in the nominal absence of extracellular Ca2+. Acrolein augmented the annexin-V-binding following treatment with Ca2+ ionophore ionomycin (1 µM. Conclusion: Acrolein stimulates suicidal erythrocyte death or eryptosis, an effect at least in part due to stimulation of ceramide formation with subsequent sensitisation of the erythrocytes to cytosolic Ca2+.

  12. Sensitivity of cancer cells to truncated diphtheria toxin.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yi Zhang

    2010-05-01

    Full Text Available Diphtheria toxin (DT has been utilized as a prospective anti-cancer agent for the targeted delivery of cytotoxic therapy to otherwise untreatable neoplasia. DT is an extremely potent toxin for which the entry of a single molecule into a cell can be lethal. DT has been targeted to cancer cells by deleting the cell receptor-binding domain and combining the remaining catalytic portion with targeting proteins that selectively bind to the surface of cancer cells. It has been assumed that "receptorless" DT cannot bind to and kill cells. In the present study, we report that "receptorless" recombinant DT385 is in fact cytotoxic to a variety of cancer cell lines.In vitro cytotoxicity of DT385 was measured by cell proliferation, cell staining and apoptosis assays. For in vivo studies, the chick chorioallantoic membrane (CAM system was used to evaluate the effect of DT385 on angiogenesis. The CAM and mouse model system was used to evaluate the effect of DT385 on HEp3 and Lewis lung carcinoma (LLC tumor growth, respectively.Of 18 human cancer cell lines tested, 15 were affected by DT385 with IC(50 ranging from 0.12-2.8 microM. Furthermore, high concentrations of DT385 failed to affect growth arrested cells. The cellular toxicity of DT385 was due to the inhibition of protein synthesis and induction of apoptosis. In vivo, DT385 diminished angiogenesis and decreased tumor growth in the CAM system, and inhibited the subcutaneous growth of LLC tumors in mice.DT385 possesses anti-angiogenic and anti-tumor activity and may have potential as a therapeutic agent.

  13. Emergence of Escherichia coli encoding Shiga toxin 2f in human Shiga toxin-producing E-coli (STEC) infections in the Netherlands, January 2008 to December 2011

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Friesema, I.; van der Zwaluw, K.; Schuurman, T.; Kooistra-Smid, M.; Franz, E.; van Duynhoven, Y.; van Pelt, W.

    2014-01-01

    The Shiga toxins of Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli (STEC) can be divided into Shiga toxin 1 (Stx1) and Shiga toxin 2 (Stx2) with several sub-variants. Variant Stx(2f) is one of the latest described, but has been rarely associated with symptomatic human infections. In the enhanced STEC

  14. Botulinum toxin for treatment of restrictive strabismus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Merino, Pilar S; Vera, Rebeca E; Mariñas, Laura G; Gómez de Liaño, Pilar S; Escribano, Jose V

    To study the types of acquired restrictive strabismus treated in a tertiary hospital and the outcome of treatment with botulinum toxin. We performed a 10-year retrospective study of patients with restrictive strabismus aged ≥18 years who were treated with botulinum toxin. Treatment was considered successful if the final vertical deviation was ≤5 PD, horizontal deviation ≤10 PD, with no head turn or diplopia. We included 27 cases (mean age, 61.9 years). Horizontal strabismus was diagnosed in 11.1%, vertical in 51.9%, and mixed in 37%. Strabismus was secondary to cataract surgery in 6 cases, high myopia in 6, orbital fractures in 5, retinal surgery in 5, Graves ophthalmopathy in 4, and repair of conjunctival injury in 1 case. Diplopia was diagnosed in all patients, head turn in 33.3%. The initial deviation was 14 PD (range, 2-40), the mean number of injections per patient was 1.6 (range, 1-3), and the mean dose was 9.5 IU (range, 2.5-22.5). At the end of follow-up, diplopia was recorded in 59.3%, head turn in 18.5%, surgical treatment in 51.9%, and need for prism glasses in 14.8%. Outcome was successful in 37% of patients (4 high myopia, 3 orbital fractures, 2 post-surgical retinal detachment, and 1 post-cataract surgery). Mean follow-up was 3±1.8 years. Vertical deviation was observed in half of the sample. The most frequent deviation was secondary to cataract surgery and high myopia. Treatment with botulinum toxin was successful in one-third of the patients at the end of follow-up. Copyright © 2016 Spanish General Council of Optometry. Published by Elsevier España, S.L.U. All rights reserved.

  15. Ultrasound-guided botulinum toxin injections

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    S. E. Khatkova

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available One of the key conditions for achieving the desirable result during botulinum toxin therapy for muscular dystonia, spasticity, and other diseases accompanied by spasm, pain, and autonomic dysfunction (dystonias, spasticity, etc. is the proper administration of the agent into the muscles directly involved in the pathological process. The exact entry of botulinum toxin into the target muscles is essential for successful and safe treatment because its injection into a normal muscle may cause side effects. The most common errors are the incorrect depth and incorrect direction of a needle on insertion. Therefore, the exact injection of the agent particularly into the shallow and deep muscles is a difficult task even for an experienced specialist and requires the use of controlling methods.The European Consensus on Botulinum Toxin Therapy points out that various injection techniques are needed for the better identification of necessary muscles. However, there are currently no reports on the clear advantage of any technique. In our country, injections using palpation and anatomical landmarks have been widely used in routine practice so far; electromyographic monitoring and electrostimulation have been less frequently applied. In recent years, the new method ultrasound-guided injection has continued to grow more popular. This effective, accessible, and easy-to-use method makes it possible to manage a real-time injection process and to ensure the exact entry of the agent into the muscle. This paper is dedicated to a comparative analysis of different injection methods and to a description of the ultrasound-guided technique and its advantages over others. 

  16. Prevention, control and detection of Fusarial toxins

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nešić Ksenija D.

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available The past couple of decades have provided considerable details on fungi and the toxins that they produce, as well on the mechanism of toxin action, toxicity and effects on animal and human health. But, since they are natural contaminants, their presence is often inevitable. Fusaria are widespread in all cereal-growing territories of the world, but they are especially common in our geographic area. Therefore, special attention is paid to the prevention and control, and also to the improvement of methods for their detection. Although all collected data were critical for understanding this worldwide problem, managing the impact of these toxins on the feed and food safety is still great practical challenge. There are a number of approaches that can be taken to minimize mycotoxin contamination in this chain: prevention of fungal growth and thus mycotoxin formation, strategies to reduce or eliminate mycotoxins from contaminated feedstuffs or diverting the contaminated products to low risk uses. A control program for mycotoxins from field to table should in­volve the criteria of an HACCP (Hazard Analysis Critical Control Points approach. It requires an understanding of the important aspects of the interactions of the toxigenic fungi with crop plants, the on-farm production and harvest methods for crops, the production of livestock using grains and processed feeds, including diagnostic capabilities for mycotoxicoses, and all the way to the development of processed foods for human consumption, as well as understanding the marketing and trade channels including storage and delivery of foods to the consumer’s table. A good testing protocol for mycotoxins is necessary to manage all of the control points and in order to be able to ensure a food supply free of toxic levels of mycotoxins for the consumer. [Projekat Ministarstva nauke Republike Srbije, br. III 46009

  17. Binding of Diphtheria Toxin to Phospholipids in Liposomes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alving, Carl R.; Iglewski, Barbara H.; Urban, Katharine A.; Moss, Joel; Richards, Roberta L.; Sadoff, Jerald C.

    1980-04-01

    Diphtheria toxin bound to the phosphate portion of some, but not all, phospholipids in liposomes. Liposomes consisting of dimyristoyl phosphatidylcholine and cholesterol did not bind toxin. Addition of 20 mol% (compared to dimyristoyl phosphatidylcholine) of dipalmitoyl phosphatidic acid, dicetyl phosphate, phosphatidylinositol phosphate, cardiolipin, or phosphatidylserine in the liposomes resulted in substantial binding of toxin. Inclusion of phosphatidylinositol in dimyristol phosphatidylcholine / cholesterol liposomes did not result in toxin binding. The calcium salt of dipalmitoyl phosphatidic acid was more effective than the sodium salt, and the highest level of binding occurred with liposomes consisting only of dipalmitoyl phosphatidic acid (calcium salt) and cholesterol. Binding of toxin to liposomes was dependent on pH, and the pattern of pH dependence varied with liposomes having different compositions. Incubation of diphtheria toxin with liposomes containing dicetyl phosphate resulted in maximal binding at pH 3.6, whereas binding to liposomes containing phosphatidylinositol phosphate was maximal above pH 7. Toxin did not bind to liposomes containing 20 mol% of a free fatty acid (palmitic acid) or a sulfated lipid (3-sulfogalactosylceramide). Toxin binding to dicetyl phosphate or phosphatidylinositol phosphate was inhibited by UTP, ATP, phosphocholine, or p-nitrophenyl phosphate, but not by uracil. We conclude that (a) diphtheria toxin binds specifically to the phosphate portion of certain phospholipids, (b) binding to phospholipids in liposomes is dependent on pH, but is not due only to electrostatic interaction, and (c) binding may be strongly influenced by the composition of adjacent phospholipids that do not bind toxin. We propose that a minor membrane phospholipid (such as phosphatidylinositol phosphate or phosphatidic acid), or that some other phosphorylated membrane molecule (such as a phosphoprotein) may be important in the initial binding of

  18. Uptake and bioaccumulation of Cry toxins by an aphidophagous predator

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Paula, Débora P.; Andow, David A.

    2016-01-01

    Uptake of Cry toxins by insect natural enemies has rarely been considered and bioaccumulation has not yet been demonstrated. Uptake can be demonstrated by the continued presence of Cry toxin after exposure has stopped and gut contents eliminated. Bioaccumulation can be demonstrated by showing uptake and that the concentration of Cry toxin in the natural enemy exceeds that in its food. We exposed larvae of the aphidophagous predator, Harmonia axyridis, to Cry1Ac and Cry1F through uniform and constant tritrophic exposure via an aphid, Myzus persicae, and looked for toxin presence in the pupae. We repeated the experiment using only Cry1F and tested newly emerged adults. Both Cry toxins were detected in pupae, and Cry1F was detected in recently emerged, unfed adults. Cry1Ac was present 2.05 times and Cry1F 3.09 times higher in predator pupae than in the aphid prey. Uptake and bioaccumulation in the third trophic level might increase the persistence of Cry toxins in the food web and mediate new exposure routes to natural enemies. - Highlights: • Uptake and bioaccumulation of two Cry toxins by a larval coccinellid was tested. • Uptake was demonstrated by presence of the toxins in pupae and adults. • Bioaccumulation was shown by higher toxin concentration in pupae than prey. • Cry1Ac was present 2.05× and Cry1F 3.09× higher in predator pupae than prey. • This might increase persistence of Cry toxins in food webs with new exposure routes. - Immatures of the predaceous coccinellid Harmonia axyridis can uptake and bioaccumulate Cry toxins delivered via their aphid prey.

  19. Scanning Surface Potential Microscopy of Spore Adhesion on Surfaces

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lee, Ida [University of Tennessee, Knoxville (UTK); Chung, Eunhyea [Georgia Institute of Technology; Kweon, Hyojin [Georgia Institute of Technology; Yiacoumi, Sotira [Georgia Institute of Technology; Tsouris, Costas [ORNL

    2012-01-01

    The adhesion of spores of Bacillus anthracis - the cause of anthrax and a likely biological threat - to solid surfaces is an important consideration in cleanup after an accidental or deliberate release. However, because of safety concerns, directly studying B. anthracis spores with advanced instrumentation is problematic. As a first step, we are examining the electrostatic potential of Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt), which is a closely related species that is often used as a simulant to study B. anthracis. Scanning surface potential microscopy (SSPM), also known as Kelvin probe force microscopy (KPFM), was used to investigate the influence of relative humidity (RH) on the surface electrostatic potential of Bt that had adhered to silica, mica, or gold substrates. AFM/SSPM side-by-side images were obtained separately in air, at various values of RH, after an aqueous droplet with spores was applied on each surface and allowed to dry before measurements. In the SSPM images, a negative potential on the surface of the spores was observed compared with that of the substrates. The surface potential decreased as the humidity increased. Spores were unable to adhere to a surface with an extremely negative potential, such as mica.

  20. Molecular analysis of the sea anemone toxin Av3 reveals selectivity to insects and demonstrates the heterogeneity of receptor site-3 on voltage-gated Na+ channels.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moran, Yehu; Kahn, Roy; Cohen, Lior; Gur, Maya; Karbat, Izhar; Gordon, Dalia; Gurevitz, Michael

    2007-08-15

    Av3 is a short peptide toxin from the sea anemone Anemonia viridis shown to be active on crustaceans and inactive on mammals. It inhibits inactivation of Na(v)s (voltage-gated Na+ channels) like the structurally dissimilar scorpion alpha-toxins and type I sea anemone toxins that bind to receptor site-3. To examine the potency and mode of interaction of Av3 with insect Na(v)s, we established a system for its expression, mutagenized it throughout, and analysed it in toxicity, binding and electrophysiological assays. The recombinant Av3 was found to be highly toxic to blowfly larvae (ED50=2.65+/-0.46 pmol/100 mg), to compete well with the site-3 toxin LqhalphaIT (from the scorpion Leiurus quinquestriatus) on binding to cockroach neuronal membranes (K(i)=21.4+/-7.1 nM), and to inhibit the inactivation of Drosophila melanogaster channel, DmNa(v)1, but not that of mammalian Na(v)s expressed in Xenopus oocytes. Moreover, like other site-3 toxins, the activity of Av3 was synergically enhanced by ligands of receptor site-4 (e.g. scorpion beta-toxins). The bioactive surface of Av3 was found to consist mainly of aromatic residues and did not resemble any of the bioactive surfaces of other site-3 toxins. These analyses have portrayed a toxin that might interact with receptor site-3 in a different fashion compared with other ligands of this site. This assumption was corroborated by a D1701R mutation in DmNa(v)1, which has been shown to abolish the activity of all other site-3 ligands, except Av3. All in all, the present study provides further evidence for the heterogeneity of receptor site-3, and raises Av3 as a unique model for design of selective anti-insect compounds.

  1. A retrospective study on the epidemiology of anthrax, foot and mouth disease, haemorrhagic septicaemia, peste des petits ruminants and rabies in Bangladesh, 2010-2012.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shankar P Mondal

    Full Text Available Anthrax, foot and mouth disease (FMD, haemorrhagic septicaemia (HS, peste des petits ruminants (PPR and rabies are considered to be endemic in Bangladesh. This retrospective study was conducted to understand the geographic and seasonal distribution of these major infectious diseases in livestock based on data collected through passive surveillance from 1 January 2010 to 31 December 2012. Data analysis for this period revealed 5,937 cases of anthrax, 300,333 of FMD, 13,436 of HS, 247,783 of PPR and 14,085 cases of dog bite/rabies. While diseases were reported in almost every district of the country, the highest frequency of occurrence corresponded to the susceptible livestock population in the respective districts. There was no significant difference in the disease occurrences between districts bordering India/Myanmar and non-border districts (p>0.05. Significantly higher (p<0.01 numbers of anthrax (84.5%, FMD (88.3%, HS (84.9% and dog bite/rabies (64.3% cases were reported in cattle than any other species. PPR cases were reported mostly (94.8% in goats with only isolated cases (5.2% in sheep. The diseases occur throughout the year with peak numbers reported during June through September and lowest during December through April, with significant differences (p<0.01 between the months. The annual usages of vaccines for anthrax, FMD, HS and PPR were only 7.31%, 0.61%, 0.84% and 11.59% of the susceptible livestock population, respectively. Prophylactic vaccination against rabies was 21.16% of cases. There were significant differences (p<0.01 in the administration of anthrax, FMD and HS vaccines between border and non-border districts, but not PPR or rabies vaccines. We recommend that surveillance and reporting of these diseases need to be improved throughout the country. Furthermore, all suspected clinical cases should be confirmed by laboratory examination. The findings of this study can be used in the formulation of more effective disease

  2. Gold nanomaterials for the selective capturing and SERS diagnosis of toxins in aqueous and biological fluids

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hassanain, Waleed A.; Izake, Emad L.; Schmidt, Michael Stenbæk

    2017-01-01

    the extractor nanoparticles within 5min by manipulating the pH environment of the nanoparticles. The regenerated extractor nanoparticles maintained their capture efficiency and, therefore, were re-used to capture of MC-LR from successive samples. The released purified toxin was screened within 10min on gold......A highly sensitive nanosensing method for the combined selective capture and SERS detection of Microcystin-LR (MC-LR) in blood plasma has been developed. The new method utilizes gold coated magnetic nanoparticles that are functionalized with anti MC-LR antibody Fab' fragments for the selective...... capture of MC-LR from aqueous media and blood plasma. Using an oriented immobilization approach, the Fab' fragments are covalently attached to gold surface to form a monolayer with high capture efficiency towards the toxin. After the selective capture, the purified MC-LR molecules were released from...

  3. Evaluation of a focused virtual library of heterobifunctional ligands for Clostridium difficile toxins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sanhueza, Carlos A; Cartmell, Jonathan; El-Hawiet, Amr; Szpacenko, Adam; Kitova, Elena N; Daneshfar, Rambod; Klassen, John S; Lang, Dean E; Eugenio, Luiz; Ng, Kenneth K-S; Kitov, Pavel I; Bundle, David R

    2015-01-07

    A focused library of virtual heterobifunctional ligands was generated in silico and a set of ligands with recombined fragments was synthesized and evaluated for binding to Clostridium difficile toxins. The position of the trisaccharide fragment was used as a reference for filtering docked poses during virtual screening to match the trisaccharide ligand in a crystal structure. The peptoid, a diversity fragment probing the protein surface area adjacent to a known binding site, was generated by a multi-component Ugi reaction. Our approach combines modular fragment-based design with in silico screening of synthetically feasible compounds and lays the groundwork for future efforts in development of composite bifunctional ligands for large clostridial toxins.

  4. Isolation of Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli harboring variant Shiga toxin genes from seafood

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sreepriya Prakasan

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available Background and Aim: Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli (STEC are important pathogens of global significance. STEC are responsible for numerous food-borne outbreaks worldwide and their presence in food is a potential health hazard. The objective of the present study was to determine the incidence of STEC in fresh seafood in Mumbai, India, and to characterize STEC with respect to their virulence determinants. Materials and Methods: A total of 368 E. coli were isolated from 39 fresh seafood samples (18 finfish and 21 shellfish using culture-based methods. The isolates were screened by polymerase chain reaction (PCR for the genes commonly associated with STEC. The variant Shiga toxin genes were confirmed by Southern blotting and hybridization followed by DNA sequencing. Results: One or more Shiga toxins genes were detected in 61 isolates. Of 39 samples analyzed, 10 (25.64% samples harbored STEC. Other virulence genes, namely, eaeA (coding for an intimin and hlyA (hemolysin A were detected in 43 and 15 seafood isolates, respectively. The variant stx1 genes from 6 isolates were sequenced, five of which were found to be stx1d variants, while one sequence varied considerably from known stx1 sequences. Southern hybridization and DNA sequence analysis suggested putative Shiga toxin variant genes (stx2 in at least 3 other isolates. Conclusion: The results of this study showed the occurrence of STEC in seafood harboring one or more Shiga toxin genes. The detection of STEC by PCR may be hampered due to the presence of variant genes such as the stx1d in STEC. This is the first report of stx1d gene in STEC isolated from Indian seafood.

  5. 76 FR 78215 - Possession, Use, and Transfer of Select Agents and Toxins; Biennial Review; Proposed Rule

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-12-16

    ... agents and toxins list; whether minimum standards for personnel reliability, physical and cyber security... toxins list; (3) whether minimum standards for personnel reliability, physical and cyber security should...

  6. Characterization of a Mutant Diphtheria Toxin that is Defective in Binding to Cell Membrane Receptors on Vero Cells

    Science.gov (United States)

    1982-08-13

    pinocytlc activity was demonstrated by the Increase in lysosomal vesicles ( acid phosphatase -positive vesicles) (4, 13). Poly-L-ornithine increased... wheat germ agglutinin and the protection was reversed by a-methly- mannoslde and N-acetylglucosamlne, respectively. These studies suggested that the...on the cell surface were involved in the initial binding of toxin to cell surface receptors. Concanavalin A and wheat germ agglutinin Inhibited the

  7. Shiga Toxin (Stx) Gene Detection and Verotoxigenic Potentials of ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    DR-AMADI

    Nigerian Journal of Basic and Applied Science (June, 2016), 24(1): 98-105 .... dangerous pathogenic shiga- toxin producing E. coli from the food product. Consequent .... Table 3: Vero Toxin Analysis of non – 0157 E. coli Isolates From Nono Sold in Nigeria. City .... receptors in their plasma membranes and will detect all ...

  8. EFFECT OF MARINE TOXINS ON THERMOREGULATION IN MICE.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marine algal toxins are extremely toxic and can represent a major health problem to humans and animals. Temperature regulation is one of many processes to be affected by exposure to these toxins. Mice and rats become markedly hypothermic when subjected to acute exposure to the ma...

  9. Oxidative Stress in Shiga Toxin Production by Enterohemorrhagic Escherichia coli

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Katarzyna Licznerska

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Virulence of enterohemorrhagic Escherichia coli (EHEC strains depends on production of Shiga toxins. These toxins are encoded in genomes of lambdoid bacteriophages (Shiga toxin-converting phages, present in EHEC cells as prophages. The genes coding for Shiga toxins are silent in lysogenic bacteria, and prophage induction is necessary for their efficient expression and toxin production. Under laboratory conditions, treatment with UV light or antibiotics interfering with DNA replication are commonly used to induce lambdoid prophages. Since such conditions are unlikely to occur in human intestine, various research groups searched for other factors or agents that might induce Shiga toxin-converting prophages. Among other conditions, it was reported that treatment with H2O2 caused induction of these prophages, though with efficiency significantly lower relative to UV-irradiation or mitomycin C treatment. A molecular mechanism of this phenomenon has been proposed. It appears that the oxidative stress represents natural conditions provoking induction of Shiga toxin-converting prophages as a consequence of H2O2 excretion by either neutrophils in infected humans or protist predators outside human body. Finally, the recently proposed biological role of Shiga toxin production is described in this paper, and the “bacterial altruism” and “Trojan Horse” hypotheses, which are connected to the oxidative stress, are discussed.

  10. Short Toxin-like Proteins Abound in Cnidaria Genomes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michal Linial

    2012-11-01

    Full Text Available Cnidaria is a rich phylum that includes thousands of marine species. In this study, we focused on Anthozoa and Hydrozoa that are represented by the Nematostella vectensis (Sea anemone and Hydra magnipapillata genomes. We present a method for ranking the toxin-like candidates from complete proteomes of Cnidaria. Toxin-like functions were revealed using ClanTox, a statistical machine-learning predictor trained on ion channel inhibitors from venomous animals. Fundamental features that were emphasized in training ClanTox include cysteines and their spacing along the sequences. Among the 83,000 proteins derived from Cnidaria representatives, we found 170 candidates that fulfill the properties of toxin-like-proteins, the vast majority of which were previously unrecognized as toxins. An additional 394 short proteins exhibit characteristics of toxin-like proteins at a moderate degree of confidence. Remarkably, only 11% of the predicted toxin-like proteins were previously classified as toxins. Based on our prediction methodology and manual annotation, we inferred functions for over 400 of these proteins. Such functions include protease inhibitors, membrane pore formation, ion channel blockers and metal binding proteins. Many of the proteins belong to small families of paralogs. We conclude that the evolutionary expansion of toxin-like proteins in Cnidaria contributes to their fitness in the complex environment of the aquatic ecosystem.

  11. Physiological effect of the toxin from Xanthomonas retroflexus on ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Physiological effect of the toxin from Xanthomonas retroflexus on redroot pigweed (Amaranthus retroflexus). Z Sun, M Li, J Chen, Y Li. Abstract. A new toxin from Xanthomonas retroflexus could cause a series of physiological responses on seedlings of redroot pigweed. The experimental results revealed that respiratory ratio ...

  12. Treatment of anismus in intractable constipation with botulinum A toxin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hallan, R I; Williams, N S; Melling, J; Waldron, D J; Womack, N R; Morrison, J F

    1988-09-24

    In seven patients with anismus the striated sphincter muscle complex was selectively weakened by local injection of Clostridium botulinum type A toxin. Symptom scores improved significantly and correlated with a significant reduction in the maximum voluntary and canal squeeze pressure and a significant increase in the anorectal angle on straining. Botulinum A toxin seems to be promising treatment for some patients with anismus.

  13. T-2 toxin Analysis in Poultry and Cattle Feedstuff.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gholampour Azizi, Issa; Azarmi, Masumeh; Danesh Pouya, Naser; Rouhi, Samaneh

    2014-05-01

    T-2 toxin is a mycotoxin that is produced by the Fusarium fungi. Consumption of food and feed contaminated with T-2 toxin causes diseases in humans and animals. In this study T-2 toxin was analyzed in poultry and cattle feedstuff in cities of Mazandaran province (Babol, Sari, Chalus), Northern Iran. In this study, 90 samples were analyzed for T-2 toxin contamination by the ELISA method. Out of 60 concentrate and bagasse samples collected from various cities of Mazandaran province, 11.7% and 3.3% were contaminated with T-2 toxin at concentrations > 25 and 50 µg/kg, respectively. For mixed poultry diets, while 10% of the 30 analyzed samples were contaminated with > 25 µg/kg, none of the tested samples contained T-2 toxin at levels > 50 µg/kg. The results obtained from this study show that poultry and cattle feedstuff can be contaminated with different amounts of T-2 toxin in different conditions and locations. Feedstuff that are contaminated by this toxin cause different diseases in animals; thus, potential transfer of mycotoxins to edible by-products from animals fed mycotoxin-contaminated feeds drives the need to routinely monitor mycotoxins in animal feeds and their components. This is the basis on which effective management of mycotoxins and their effects can be implemented.

  14. Short inventory of EU legislation on plant toxins in food

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Nijs, de M.; Noordam, M.Y.; Mol, H.G.J.

    2017-01-01

    Plant toxins, secondary metabolites that are not essential for the survival of the organism itself but are toxic to human health, are produced by many plants. Plant toxins can be present as inherent metabolites in daily foods such as potatoes, herbs and spices or in herbal preparations. Plant

  15. 9 CFR 121.3 - VS select agents and toxins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-01-01

    ... genetically modified. (d) VS select agents or toxins that meet any of the following criteria are excluded from... AGRICULTURE VIRUSES, SERUMS, TOXINS, AND ANALOGOUS PRODUCTS; ORGANISMS AND VECTORS POSSESSION, USE, AND... recombinant organisms: (1) Nucleic acids that can produce infectious forms of any of the select agent viruses...

  16. Solid-phase synthesis of polyamine toxin analogues

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kromann, Hasse; Krikstolaityte, Sonata; Andersen, Anne J

    2002-01-01

    The wasp toxin philanthotoxin-433 (PhTX-433) is a nonselective and noncompetitive antagonist of ionotropic receptors, such as ionotropic glutamate receptors and nicotinic acetylcholine receptors. Polyamine toxins are extensively used for the characterization of subtypes of ionotropic glutamate re...

  17. Guidelines for safe handling of toxins. Technical report

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Szilagyi, M.

    1995-11-01

    Toxins are highly toxic chemicals which cause illness through all routes of entry into the body. This technical note has been prepared to ensure that preparation, handling, and disposal of toxins does not constitute a greater occupational hazard than is necessary. It includes hazards that may be encountered and the precautions that should be taken against such hazards.

  18. Recent advances in the medicinal chemistry of polyamine toxins

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Strømgaard, K; Andersen, K; Krogsgaard-Larsen, P

    2001-01-01

    This review describes the recent developments in the field of polyamine toxins, with focus on structure activity relationship investigations, including studies of importance of the polyamine moiety for biological activity, photolabeling studies using polyamine toxins as templates, as well as use ...

  19. The resurgence of botulinum toxin injection for strabismus in children.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mahan, Marielle; Engel, J Mark

    2017-09-01

    The present review discusses recent advances in the use of botulinum toxin for the management of strabismus in children. Botulinum toxin injection produces similar results compared to surgery for certain subtypes of strabismus, especially acute onset esotropia. It may be more effective in many subtypes of esotropia where surgery has been less reliable, including partially accommodative esotropia, esotropia associated with cerebral palsy, and thyroid eye disease. Small retrospective studies have demonstrated the efficacy of botulinum toxin in the treatment of many types of pediatric strabismus, providing some guidance for clinicians to determine which patients would benefit most from this intervention. Although administration of botulinum toxin is generally accepted as a reasonable option in select cases, many strabismus surgeons have not fully embraced the treatment, in part because of perceived disadvantages compared to surgery and difficulty in identifying subsets with the highest potential for therapeutic success. A recent study compared the administration of botulinum toxin in children with acute-onset esotropia to surgical correction and found botulinum toxin had a statistically equal success rate, but with the advantage of significantly less time under general anesthesia. In addition, botulinum toxin has been recently tried in patients with partially accommodative esotropia, esotropia associated with cerebral palsy, cyclic esotropia, and in patients with thyroid eye disease. The present review will discuss current clinical recommendations based on recent studies on the use of botulinum toxin in children with strabismus.

  20. Effect of Cryphonectria parasitica toxin on lipid peroxidation and ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    In order to clarify the responses of different chestnut cultivars to Cp-toxin stress, the effect of Cp-toxin from Cryphonectria parasitica (Murr.) Barr on Castanea mollissima Blume, especially on its cell structure, was examined. Chestnut shoots of both resistant (Beiyu No. 2) and susceptible (Hongguang) cultivars were treated ...

  1. Enhanced sporulation and toxin production by a mutant derivative of ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    fatima

    total proteins determined with the toxin producing organism. All values are the ... synthesis specific yield was the ratio of δ-endo-toxin (mg L-1) divided by .... corresponding to 31.8 mg. 108 spore. −1 delta-endotoxins, it became apparent that ...

  2. The Biochemical Toxin Arsenal from Ant Venoms

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Axel Touchard

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Ants (Formicidae represent a taxonomically diverse group of hymenopterans with over 13,000 extant species, the majority of which inject or spray secretions from a venom gland. The evolutionary success of ants is mostly due to their unique eusociality that has permitted them to develop complex collaborative strategies, partly involving their venom secretions, to defend their nest against predators, microbial pathogens, ant competitors, and to hunt prey. Activities of ant venom include paralytic, cytolytic, haemolytic, allergenic, pro-inflammatory, insecticidal, antimicrobial, and pain-producing pharmacologic activities, while non-toxic functions include roles in chemical communication involving trail and sex pheromones, deterrents, and aggregators. While these diverse activities in ant venoms have until now been largely understudied due to the small venom yield from ants, modern analytical and venomic techniques are beginning to reveal the diversity of toxin structure and function. As such, ant venoms are distinct from other venomous animals, not only rich in linear, dimeric and disulfide-bonded peptides and bioactive proteins, but also other volatile and non-volatile compounds such as alkaloids and hydrocarbons. The present review details the unique structures and pharmacologies of known ant venom proteinaceous and alkaloidal toxins and their potential as a source of novel bioinsecticides and therapeutic agents.

  3. Cardiovascular-Active Venom Toxins: An Overview.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rebello Horta, Carolina Campolina; Chatzaki, Maria; Rezende, Bruno Almeida; Magalhães, Bárbara de Freitas; Duarte, Clara Guerra; Felicori, Liza Figueiredo; Ribeiro Oliveira-Mendes, Bárbara Bruna; do Carmo, Anderson Oliveira; Chávez-Olórtegui, Carlos; Kalapothakis, Evanguedes

    2016-01-01

    Animal venoms are a mixture of bioactive compounds produced as weapons and used primarily to immobilize and kill preys. As a result of the high potency and specificity for various physiological targets, many toxins from animal venoms have emerged as possible drugs for the medication of diverse disorders, including cardiovascular diseases. Captopril, which inhibits the angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE), was the first successful venom-based drug and a notable example of rational drug design. Since captopril was developed, many studies have discovered novel bradykinin-potentiating peptides (BPPs) with actions on the cardiovascular system. Natriuretic peptides (NPs) have also been found in animal venoms and used as template to design new drugs with applications in cardiovascular diseases. Among the anti-arrhythmic peptides, GsMTx-4 was discovered to be a toxin that selectively inhibits the stretch-activated cation channels (SACs), which are involved in atrial fibrillation. The present review describes the main components isolated from animal venoms that act on the cardiovascular system and presents a brief summary of venomous animals and their venom apparatuses.

  4. The Biochemical Toxin Arsenal from Ant Venoms

    Science.gov (United States)

    Touchard, Axel; Aili, Samira R.; Fox, Eduardo Gonçalves Paterson; Escoubas, Pierre; Orivel, Jérôme; Nicholson, Graham M.; Dejean, Alain

    2016-01-01

    Ants (Formicidae) represent a taxonomically diverse group of hymenopterans with over 13,000 extant species, the majority of which inject or spray secretions from a venom gland. The evolutionary success of ants is mostly due to their unique eusociality that has permitted them to develop complex collaborative strategies, partly involving their venom secretions, to defend their nest against predators, microbial pathogens, ant competitors, and to hunt prey. Activities of ant venom include paralytic, cytolytic, haemolytic, allergenic, pro-inflammatory, insecticidal, antimicrobial, and pain-producing pharmacologic activities, while non-toxic functions include roles in chemical communication involving trail and sex pheromones, deterrents, and aggregators. While these diverse activities in ant venoms have until now been largely understudied due to the small venom yield from ants, modern analytical and venomic techniques are beginning to reveal the diversity of toxin structure and function. As such, ant venoms are distinct from other venomous animals, not only rich in linear, dimeric and disulfide-bonded peptides and bioactive proteins, but also other volatile and non-volatile compounds such as alkaloids and hydrocarbons. The present review details the unique structures and pharmacologies of known ant venom proteinaceous and alkaloidal toxins and their potential as a source of novel bioinsecticides and therapeutic agents. PMID:26805882

  5. Lactobacillus bulgaricus mutants decompose uremic toxins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bai, Yun-Huan; Jiang, Ya-Fen; Jiang, Yun-Sheng

    2014-06-01

    We aim to obtain a probiotic strain from Lactobacillus bulgaricus by testing its capability to decompose uremic toxins to provide new intestinal bacteria for the treatment of chronic renal failure. Original L. bulgaricus was cultured with the serum of uremic patients and then mutated by physical (ultraviolet) and chemical (diethyl sulfate) methods repeatedly. Using creatinine decomposition rate as an observed index, we selected the best strains which decreased the most concentration of the creatinine. We then tested its ability to decompose urea, uric acid, serum phosphate, parathyroid hormone, and homocysteine and its genetic stability. After inductive and mutagenic treatment, DUC3-17 was selected. Its decomposition rate of creatinine, urea nitrogen, uric acid, phosphorus, parathyroid hormone, and homocysteine were 17.23%, 36.02%, 9.84%, 15.73%, 78.26%, and 12.69%, respectively. The degrading capacity was sustained over five generations. After directional induction and compound mutation, L. bulgaricus has greater capacity to decompose uremic toxins, with a stable inheritance.

  6. [Botulinum toxin and rejuvenation of the eye].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Volpei, Ch; Miniconi, M-J; Brunner, C I; Besins, T; Braccini, F

    2013-01-01

    Treatments with botulinum toxin in the forehead and periorbital areas may induce disappointing or even paradoxical results. Our study, focused on this area aimed at refining injection techniques by analyzing muscular balances and comparing the effect according to injection doses and topography. This experimental study has been carried out in the form of 2 session workshops, with volunteers duly informed of the study contents and giving their informed consent. It was conducted by physicians and surgeons members of SAMCEP* (Société Avancée de Médecine et Chirurgie Esthétique et Plastique). The botulinum toxin was onabotulinumtoxin A. Results were evaluated 15 days after treatment, in regard to global eyebrow position, eyebrow head and tail position; muscle interactions; lines above the eyebrow. Eleven case reports and their results are shown and discussed. Our study underlines two important insights: muscle balances and "border areas", between orbicularis oculi and corrugator, key features for eyebrow head, and between frontalis and orbicularis oculifor eyebrow tail.

  7. Prokaryotic adenylate cyclase toxin stimulates anterior pituitary cells in culture

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Cronin, M.J.; Evans, W.S.; Rogol, A.D.; Weiss, A.A.; Thorner, M.O.; Orth, D.N.; Nicholson, W.E.; Yasumoto, T.; Hewlett, E.L.

    1986-01-01

    Bordetella pertussis synthesis a variety of virulence factors including a calmodulin-dependent adenylate cyclase (AC) toxin. Treatment of anterior pituitary cells with this AC toxin resulted in an increase in cellular cAMP levels that was associated with accelerated exocytosis of growth hormone (GH), prolactin, adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH), and luteinizing hormone (LH). The kinetics of release of these hormones, however, were markedly different; GH and prolactin were rapidly released, while LH and ACTH secretion was more gradually elevated. Neither dopamine agonists nor somatostatin changes the ability of AC toxin to generate cAMP (up to 2 h). Low concentrations of AC toxin amplified the secretory response to hypophysiotrophic hormones. The authors conclude that bacterial AC toxin can rapidly elevate cAMP levels in anterior pituitary cells and that it is the response that explains the subsequent acceleration of hormone release

  8. Milling technological experiments to reduce Fusarium toxin contamination in wheat

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Véha A.

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available We examine 4 different DON-toxin-containing (0.74 - 1.15 - 1.19 - 2.14 mg/kg winter wheat samples: they were debranned and undebranned, and we investigated the flour’s and the by-products’ (coarse, fine bran toxin content changes. SATAKE lab-debranner was used for debranning and BRABENDER lab-mill for the milling process. Without debranning, two sample flours were above the DON toxin limit (0.75 mg/kg, which are waste. By minimum debranning (and minimum debranning mass loss; 6-8%, our experience with whole flour is that the multi-stage debranning measurement significantly reduces the content of the flour’s DON toxin, while the milling by-products, only after careful consideration and DON toxin measurements, may be produced for public consumption and for feeding.

  9. Botulinum toxin in the treatment of vocal fold nodules.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Allen, Jacqui E; Belafsky, Peter C

    2009-12-01

    Promising new techniques in the management of vocal fold nodules have been developed in the past 2 years. Simultaneously, the therapeutic use of botulinum toxin has rapidly expanded. This review explores the use of botulinum toxin in treatment of vocal nodules and summarizes current therapeutic concepts. New microsurgical instruments and techniques, refinements in laser technology, radiosurgical excision and steroid intralesional injections are all promising new techniques in the management of vocal nodules. Botulinum toxin-induced 'voice rest' is a new technique we have employed in patients with recalcitrant nodules. Successful resolution of nodules is possible with this technique, without the risk of vocal fold scarring inherent in dissection/excision techniques. Botulinum toxin usage is exponentially increasing, and large-scale, long-term studies demonstrate its safety profile. Targeted vocal fold temporary paralysis induced by botulinum toxin injection is a new, well tolerated and efficacious treatment in patients with persistent vocal fold nodules.

  10. Treatment of Gastrointestinal Sphincters Spasms with Botulinum Toxin A

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Giuseppe Brisinda

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available Botulinum toxin A inhibits neuromuscular transmission. It has become a drug with many indications. The range of clinical applications has grown to encompass several neurological and non-neurological conditions. One of the most recent achievements in the field is the observation that botulinum toxin A provides benefit in diseases of the gastrointestinal tract. Although toxin blocks cholinergic nerve endings in the autonomic nervous system, it has also been shown that it does not block non-adrenergic non-cholinergic responses mediated by nitric oxide. This has promoted further interest in using botulinum toxin A as a treatment for overactive smooth muscles and sphincters. The introduction of this therapy has made the treatment of several clinical conditions easier, in the outpatient setting, at a lower cost and without permanent complications. This review presents current data on the use of botulinum toxin A in the treatment of pathological conditions of the gastrointestinal tract.

  11. Botulinum Toxin and Muscle Atrophy: A Wanted or Unwanted Effect.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Durand, Paul D; Couto, Rafael A; Isakov, Raymond; Yoo, Donald B; Azizzadeh, Babak; Guyuron, Bahman; Zins, James E

    2016-04-01

    While the facial rejuvenating effect of botulinum toxin type A is well known and widespread, its use in body and facial contouring is less common. We first describe its use for deliberate muscle volume reduction, and then document instances of unanticipated and undesirable muscle atrophy. Finally, we investigate the potential long-term adverse effects of botulinum toxin-induced muscle atrophy. Although the use of botulinum toxin type A in the cosmetic patient has been extensively studied, there are several questions yet to be addressed. Does prolonged botulinum toxin treatment increase its duration of action? What is the mechanism of muscle atrophy and what is the cause of its reversibility once treatment has stopped? We proceed to examine how prolonged chemodenervation with botulinum toxin can increase its duration of effect and potentially contribute to muscle atrophy. Instances of inadvertent botulinum toxin-induced atrophy are also described. These include the "hourglass deformity" secondary to botulinum toxin type A treatment for migraine headaches, and a patient with atrophy of multiple facial muscles from injections for hemifacial spasm. Numerous reports demonstrate that muscle atrophy after botulinum toxin type A treatment occurs and is both reversible and temporary, with current literature supporting the notion that repeated chemodenervation with botulinum toxin likely responsible for both therapeutic and incidental temporary muscle atrophy. Furthermore, duration of response may be increased with subsequent treatments, thus minimizing frequency of reinjection. Practitioners should be aware of the temporary and reversible effect of botulinum toxin-induced muscle atrophy and be prepared to reassure patients on this matter. © 2016 The American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery, Inc. Reprints and permission: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  12. Inhibition of the adenylyl cyclase toxin, edema factor, from Bacillus anthracis by a series of 18 mono- and bis-(M)ANT-substituted nucleoside 5'-triphosphates.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Taha, Hesham; Dove, Stefan; Geduhn, Jens; König, Burkhard; Shen, Yuequan; Tang, Wei-Jen; Seifert, Roland

    2012-01-01

    Bacillus anthracis causes anthrax disease and exerts its deleterious effects by the release of three exotoxins, i.e. lethal factor, protective antigen and edema factor (EF), a highly active calmodulin-dependent adenylyl cyclase (AC). Conventional antibiotic treatment is ineffective against either toxaemia or antibiotic-resistant strains. Thus, more effective drugs for anthrax treatment are needed. Our previous studies showed that EF is differentially inhibited by various purine and pyrimidine nucleotides modified with N-methylanthraniloyl (MANT)- or anthraniloyl (ANT) groups at the 2'(3')-O-ribosyl position, with the unique preference for the base cytosine (Taha et al., Mol Pharmacol 75:693 (2009)). MANT-CTP was the most potent EF inhibitor (K (i), 100 nM) among 16 compounds studied. Here, we examined the interaction of EF with a series of 18 2',3'-O-mono- and bis-(M)ANT-substituted nucleotides, recently shown to be very potent inhibitors of the AC toxin from Bordetella pertussis, CyaA (Geduhn et al., J Pharmacol Exp Ther 336:104 (2011)). We analysed purified EF and EF mutants in radiometric AC assays and in fluorescence spectroscopy studies and conducted molecular modelling studies. Bis-MANT nucleotides inhibited EF competitively. Propyl-ANT-ATP was the most potent EF inhibitor (K (i), 80 nM). In contrast to the observations made for CyaA, introduction of a second (M)ANT-group decreased rather than increased inhibitor potency at EF. Activation of EF by calmodulin resulted in effective fluorescence resonance energy transfer (FRET) from tryptophan and tyrosine residues located in the vicinity of the catalytic site to bis-MANT-ATP, but FRET to bis-MANT-CTP was only small. Mutations N583Q, K353A and K353R differentially altered the inhibitory potencies of bis-MANT-ATP and bis-MANT-CTP. The nucleotide binding site of EF accommodates bulky bis-(M)ANT-substituted purine and pyrimidine nucleotides, but the fit is suboptimal compared to CyaA. These data provide a basis

  13. Glassy-state stabilization of a dominant negative inhibitor anthrax vaccine containing aluminum hydroxide and glycopyranoside lipid A adjuvants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hassett, Kimberly J; Vance, David J; Jain, Nishant K; Sahni, Neha; Rabia, Lilia A; Cousins, Megan C; Joshi, Sangeeta; Volkin, David B; Middaugh, C Russell; Mantis, Nicholas J; Carpenter, John F; Randolph, Theodore W

    2015-02-01

    During transport and storage, vaccines may be exposed to temperatures outside of the range recommended for storage, potentially causing efficacy losses. To better understand and prevent such losses, dominant negative inhibitor (DNI), a recombinant protein antigen for a candidate vaccine against anthrax, was formulated as a liquid and as a glassy lyophilized powder with the adjuvants aluminum hydroxide and glycopyranoside lipid A (GLA). Freeze-thawing of the liquid vaccine caused the adjuvants to aggregate and decreased its immunogenicity in mice. Immunogenicity of liquid vaccines also decreased when stored at 40°C for 8 weeks, as measured by decreases in neutralizing antibody titers in vaccinated mice. Concomitant with efficacy losses at elevated temperatures, changes in DNI structure were detected by fluorescence spectroscopy and increased deamidation was observed by capillary isoelectric focusing (cIEF) after only 1 week of storage of the liquid formulation at 40°C. In contrast, upon lyophilization, no additional deamidation after 4 weeks at 40°C and no detectable changes in DNI structure or reduction in immunogenicity after 16 weeks at 40°C were observed. Vaccines containing aluminum hydroxide and GLA elicited higher immune responses than vaccines adjuvanted with only aluminum hydroxide, with more mice responding to a single dose. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. and the American Pharmacists Association.

  14. SVM-based prediction of propeptide cleavage sites in spider toxins identifies toxin innovation in an Australian tarantula.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Emily S W Wong

    Full Text Available Spider neurotoxins are commonly used as pharmacological tools and are a popular source of novel compounds with therapeutic and agrochemical potential. Since venom peptides are inherently toxic, the host spider must employ strategies to avoid adverse effects prior to venom use. It is partly for this reason that most spider toxins encode a protective proregion that upon enzymatic cleavage is excised from the mature peptide. In order to identify the mature toxin sequence directly from toxin transcripts, without resorting to protein sequencing, the propeptide cleavage site in the toxin precursor must be predicted bioinformatically. We evaluated different machine learning strategies (support vector machines, hidden Markov model and decision tree and developed an algorithm (SpiderP for prediction of propeptide cleavage sites in spider toxins. Our strategy uses a support vector machine (SVM framework that combines both local and global sequence information. Our method is superior or comparable to current tools for prediction of propeptide sequences in spider toxins. Evaluation of the SVM method on an independent test set of known toxin sequences yielded 96% sensitivity and 100% specificity. Furthermore, we sequenced five novel peptides (not used to train the final predictor from the venom of the Australian tarantula Selenotypus plumipes to test the accuracy of the predictor and found 80% sensitivity and 99.6% 8-mer specificity. Finally, we used the predictor together with homology information to predict and characterize seven groups of novel toxins from the deeply sequenced venom gland transcriptome of S. plumipes, which revealed structural complexity and innovations in the evolution of the toxins. The precursor prediction tool (SpiderP is freely available on ArachnoServer (http://www.arachnoserver.org/spiderP.html, a web portal to a comprehensive relational database of spider toxins. All training data, test data, and scripts used are available from

  15. Botulinum toxin injection in laryngeal dyspnea.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Woisard, Virginie; Liu, Xuelai; Bes, Marie Christine Arné; Simonetta-Moreau, Marion

    2017-02-01

    Data, regarding the use of botulinum toxin (BT-A) in laryngeal dyspnea, are scarce, coming from some cases reports in the literature, including Vocal fold paralysis, laryngeal dystonia, vocal cord dysfunction also called paradoxical motion of the vocal fold (PMVF), and post-neuroleptic laryngeal dyskinesia. There is no consensus regarding the muscles and the doses to inject. The aim of this study is to present a retrospective review of patients treated in our ENT Department by BT-A injection in this indication. This study is a retrospective study describing patients who underwent an injection of botulinum toxin for laryngeal dyspnea in the ENT Department from 2005 to 2015 years. The inclusion criteria were a dyspnea associated with a laryngeal dysfunction, confirmed by flexible fiberoptic nasopharyngolaryngoscopy. Information concerning the causes of the dyspnea, the botulinum toxin BT-A injections procedure, post-injection follow-up, and respiratory outcome were collected for all patients included. In the group of 13 patients included, the main cause identified as principal factor linked with the short breath was: a bilateral VF paralysis (Patel et al., Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg 130:686-689, 7), laryngeal dystonia (Balkissoon and Kenn, Semin Respir Crit Care Med 33:595-605, 2), Anxiety syndrome associated with unilateral vocal fold paralysis or asthma (Marcinow et al., Laryngoscope 124:1425-1430, 3), and an isolated asthma (Zwirner et al., Eur Arch Otorhinolaryngol 254:242-245, 1). Nine out of the thirteen patients were improved by the injections. A BT-A-induced stable benefit for four patients led them to stop the injections in the follow-up. Good outcome was observed in five other patients (main cause: bilateral VP paralysis), allowing a progressive lengthening of the delay between BT-A injections. Four patients did not report a positive risk/benefit ratio after BT-A injections; two of them (with bilateral VF paralysis), because of respiratory side effects and

  16. A Beautician’s Dystonia: Long-Lasting Effect of Botulinum Toxin

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Siria Di Martino

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Treatment options for dystonia are not curative but symptomatic; the treatment of choice for focal dystonias is repeated botulinum toxin injections. Here, we present the case of a 46-year-old beautician with focal dystonia in her left hand that affected her ability to work. Pharmacological treatment with clonazepam and gabapentin failed to resolve her symptoms and was discontinued due to side effects (sleepiness, gastrointestinal disorders. Intramuscular injection of botulinum toxin (incobotulinumtoxinA, Xeomin into the extensor digitorum communis (35 U, flexor carpi radialis (35 U, and flexor digitorum superficialis (30 U muscles resulted in complete resolution of symptoms at clinical assessments at 1, 3, 6, and 10 months after the injections, confirmed by the results of surface electromyography 10 months after treatment. The patient was able to work again 1 month after treatment. No reinjection has been necessary at the last evaluation (12 months after treatment. In conclusion, botulinum toxin is an effective treatment for focal dystonia that can have long-lasting effects and can improve patients’ ability to work and quality of life.

  17. Nanomaterials-based biosensors for detection of microorganisms and microbial toxins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sutarlie, Laura; Ow, Sian Yang; Su, Xiaodi

    2017-04-01

    Detection of microorganisms and microbial toxins is important for health and safety. Due to their unique physical and chemical properties, nanomaterials have been extensively used to develop biosensors for rapid detection of microorganisms with microbial cells and toxins as target analytes. In this paper, the design principles of nanomaterials-based biosensors for four selected analyte categories (bacteria cells, toxins, mycotoxins, and protozoa cells), closely associated with the target analytes' properties is reviewed. Five signal transducing methods that are less equipment intensive (colorimetric, fluorimetric, surface enhanced Raman scattering, electrochemical, and magnetic relaxometry methods) is described and compared for their sensory performance (in term oflimit of detection, dynamic range, and response time) for all analyte categories. In the end, the suitability of these five sensing principles for on-site or field applications is discussed. With a comprehensive coverage of nanomaterials, design principles, sensing principles, and assessment on the sensory performance and suitability for on-site application, this review offers valuable insight and perspective for designing suitable nanomaterials-based microorganism biosensors for a given application. Copyright © 2017 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  18. Potentiometric chemical sensors for the detection of paralytic shellfish toxins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ferreira, Nádia S; Cruz, Marco G N; Gomes, Maria Teresa S R; Rudnitskaya, Alisa

    2018-05-01

    Potentiometric chemical sensors for the detection of paralytic shellfish toxins have been developed. Four toxins typically encountered in Portuguese waters, namely saxitoxin, decarbamoyl saxitoxin, gonyautoxin GTX5 and C1&C2, were selected for the study. A series of miniaturized sensors with solid inner contact and plasticized polyvinylchloride membranes containing ionophores, nine compositions in total, were prepared and their characteristics evaluated. Sensors displayed cross-sensitivity to four studied toxins, i.e. response to several toxins together with low selectivity. High selectivity towards paralytic shellfish toxins was observed in the presence of inorganic cations with selectivity coefficients ranging from 0.04 to 0.001 for Na + and K + and 3.6*10 -4 to 3.4*10 -5 for Ca 2+ . Detection limits were in the range from 0.25 to 0.9 μmolL -1 for saxitoxin and decarbamoyl saxitoxin, and from 0.08 to 1.8 μmolL -1 for GTX5 and C1&C2, which allows toxin detection at the concentration levels corresponding to the legal limits. Characteristics of the developed sensors allow their use in the electronic tongue multisensor system for simultaneous quantification of paralytic shellfish toxins. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  19. Synthesis of protein in intestinal cells exposed to cholera toxin

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Peterson, J.W.; Berg, W.D. Jr.; Coppenhaver, D.H.

    1987-01-01

    The mechanism by which cyclic adenosine monophosphate (AMP), formed by intestinal epithelial cells in response to cholera toxin, ultimately results in alterations in water and electrolyte transport is poorly understood. Several studies have indicated that inhibitors of transcription or translation block much of the transport of ions and water in the intestine and edema formation in tissue elicited by cholera toxin. Data presented in this study confirmed the inhibitory effects of cycloheximide on cholera toxin-induced fluid accumulation in the rabbit intestinal loop model. Neither cycloheximide nor actinomycin D altered the amount of cyclic AMP that accumulated in intestinal cells and Chinese hamster ovary cells exposed to cholera toxin. An increase in [ 3 H] leucine incorporation was readily demonstrable in intestinal epithelial cells from rabbits challenged with Vibrio cholerae. Similarly, intestinal epithelial cells incubated with cholera toxin for 4 hr synthesized substantially more protein than controls as determined by relative incorporation of [ 35 S] methionine. Most of the new protein synthesized in response to cholera toxin was membrane associated and of high molecular weight. The possible significance of the toxin-induced protein relative to cholera pathogenesis was discussed

  20. Dinophysis Toxins: Causative Organisms, Distribution and Fate in Shellfish

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reguera, Beatriz; Riobó, Pilar; Rodríguez, Francisco; Díaz, Patricio A.; Pizarro, Gemita; Paz, Beatriz; Franco, José M.; Blanco, Juan

    2014-01-01

    Several Dinophysis species produce diarrhoetic toxins (okadaic acid and dinophysistoxins) and pectenotoxins, and cause gastointestinal illness, Diarrhetic Shellfish Poisoning (DSP), even at low cell densities (Chile, and Europe. Toxicity and toxin profiles are very variable, more between strains than species. The distribution of DSP events mirrors that of shellfish production areas that have implemented toxin regulations, otherwise misinterpreted as bacterial or viral contamination. Field observations and laboratory experiments have shown that most of the toxins produced by Dinophysis are released into the medium, raising questions about the ecological role of extracelular toxins and their potential uptake by shellfish. Shellfish contamination results from a complex balance between food selection, adsorption, species-specific enzymatic transformations, and allometric processes. Highest risk areas are those combining Dinophysis strains with high cell content of okadaates, aquaculture with predominance of mytilids (good accumulators of toxins), and consumers who frequently include mussels in their diet. Regions including pectenotoxins in their regulated phycotoxins will suffer from much longer harvesting bans and from disloyal competition with production areas where these toxins have been deregulated. PMID:24447996

  1. ACTION OF DIPHTHERIA TOXIN IN THE GUINEA PIG

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baseman, Joel B.; Pappenheimer, A. M.; Gill, D. M.; Harper, Annabel A.

    1970-01-01

    The blood clearance and distribution in the tissues of 125I after intravenous injection of small doses (1.5–5 MLD or 0.08–0.25 µg) of 125I-labeled diphtheria toxin has been followed in guinea pigs and rabbits and compared with the fate of equivalent amounts of injected 125I-labeled toxoid and bovine serum albumin. Toxoid disappeared most rapidly from the blood stream and label accumulated and was retained in liver, spleen, and especially in kidney. Both toxin and BSA behaved differently. Label was found widely distributed among all the organs except the nervous system and its rate of disappearance from the tissues paralleled its disappearance from the circulation. There was no evidence for any particular affinity of toxin for muscle tissue or for a "target" organ. Previous reports by others that toxin causes specific and selective impairment of protein synthesis in muscle tissue were not confirmed. On the contrary, both in guinea pigs and rabbits, a reduced rate of protein synthesis was observed in all tissues that had taken up the toxin label. In tissues removed from intoxicated animals of both species there was an associated reduction in aminoacyl transferase 2 content. It is concluded that the primary action of diphtheria toxin in the living animal is to effect the inactivation of aminoacyl transferase 2. The resulting inhibition in rate of protein synthesis leads to morphologic damage in all tissues reached by the toxin and ultimately to death of the animal. PMID:5511567

  2. Dinophysis Toxins: Causative Organisms, Distribution and Fate in Shellfish

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Beatriz Reguera

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Several Dinophysis species produce diarrhoetic toxins (okadaic acid and dinophysistoxins and pectenotoxins, and cause gastointestinal illness, Diarrhetic Shellfish Poisoning (DSP, even at low cell densities (<103 cells·L−1. They are the main threat, in terms of days of harvesting bans, to aquaculture in Northern Japan, Chile, and Europe. Toxicity and toxin profiles are very variable, more between strains than species. The distribution of DSP events mirrors that of shellfish production areas that have implemented toxin regulations, otherwise misinterpreted as bacterial or viral contamination. Field observations and laboratory experiments have shown that most of the toxins produced by Dinophysis are released into the medium, raising questions about the ecological role of extracelular toxins and their potential uptake by shellfish. Shellfish contamination results from a complex balance between food selection, adsorption, species-specific enzymatic transformations, and allometric processes. Highest risk areas are those combining Dinophysis strains with high cell content of okadaates, aquaculture with predominance of mytilids (good accumulators of toxins, and consumers who frequently include mussels in their diet. Regions including pectenotoxins in their regulated phycotoxins will suffer from much longer harvesting bans and from disloyal competition with production areas where these toxins have been deregulated.

  3. The role of toxins in Clostridium difficile infection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chandrasekaran, Ramyavardhanee; Lacy, D Borden

    2017-11-01

    Clostridium difficile is a bacterial pathogen that is the leading cause of nosocomial antibiotic-associated diarrhea and pseudomembranous colitis worldwide. The incidence, severity, mortality and healthcare costs associated with C. difficile infection (CDI) are rising, making C. difficile a major threat to public health. Traditional treatments for CDI involve use of antibiotics such as metronidazole and vancomycin, but disease recurrence occurs in about 30% of patients, highlighting the need for new therapies. The pathogenesis of C. difficile is primarily mediated by the actions of two large clostridial glucosylating toxins, toxin A (TcdA) and toxin B (TcdB). Some strains produce a third toxin, the binary toxin C. difficile transferase, which can also contribute to C. difficile virulence and disease. These toxins act on the colonic epithelium and immune cells and induce a complex cascade of cellular events that result in fluid secretion, inflammation and tissue damage, which are the hallmark features of the disease. In this review, we summarize our current understanding of the structure and mechanism of action of the C. difficile toxins and their role in disease. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of FEMS 2017.

  4. Heterologous Expression of Toxins from Bacterial Toxin-Antitoxin Systems in Eukaryotic Cells: Strategies and Applications

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chew Chieng Yeo

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available Toxin-antitoxin (TA systems are found in nearly all prokaryotic genomes and usually consist of a pair of co-transcribed genes, one of which encodes a stable toxin and the other, its cognate labile antitoxin. Certain environmental and physiological cues trigger the degradation of the antitoxin, causing activation of the toxin, leading either to the death or stasis of the host cell. TA systems have a variety of functions in the bacterial cell, including acting as mediators of programmed cell death, the induction of a dormant state known as persistence and the stable maintenance of plasmids and other mobile genetic elements. Some bacterial TA systems are functional when expressed in eukaryotic cells and this has led to several innovative applications, which are the subject of this review. Here, we look at how bacterial TA systems have been utilized for the genetic manipulation of yeasts and other eukaryotes, for the containment of genetically modified organisms, and for the engineering of high expression eukaryotic cell lines. We also examine how TA systems have been adopted as an important tool in developmental biology research for the ablation of specific cells and the potential for utility of TA systems in antiviral and anticancer gene therapies.

  5. Heterologous Expression of Toxins from Bacterial Toxin-Antitoxin Systems in Eukaryotic Cells: Strategies and Applications

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yeo, Chew Chieng; Abu Bakar, Fauziah; Chan, Wai Ting; Espinosa, Manuel; Harikrishna, Jennifer Ann

    2016-01-01

    Toxin-antitoxin (TA) systems are found in nearly all prokaryotic genomes and usually consist of a pair of co-transcribed genes, one of which encodes a stable toxin and the other, its cognate labile antitoxin. Certain environmental and physiological cues trigger the degradation of the antitoxin, causing activation of the toxin, leading either to the death or stasis of the host cell. TA systems have a variety of functions in the bacterial cell, including acting as mediators of programmed cell death, the induction of a dormant state known as persistence and the stable maintenance of plasmids and other mobile genetic elements. Some bacterial TA systems are functional when expressed in eukaryotic cells and this has led to several innovative applications, which are the subject of this review. Here, we look at how bacterial TA systems have been utilized for the genetic manipulation of yeasts and other eukaryotes, for the containment of genetically modified organisms, and for the engineering of high expression eukaryotic cell lines. We also examine how TA systems have been adopted as an important tool in developmental biology research for the ablation of specific cells and the potential for utility of TA systems in antiviral and anticancer gene therapies. PMID:26907343

  6. Botulinum toxin drugs: brief history and outlook.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dressler, D

    2016-03-01

    The global botulinum toxin (BT) market is currently undergoing rapid changes: this may be the time to review the history and the future of BT drug development. Since the early 1990s Botox(®) and Dysport(®) dominated the international BT market. Later, Myobloc(®)/NeuroBloc(®), a liquid BT type B drug, came out, but failed. Xeomin(®) is the latest major BT drug. It features removal of complexing proteins and improved neurotoxin purity. Several new BT drugs are coming out of Korea, China and Russia. Scientific challenges for BT drug development include modification of BT's duration of action, its transdermal transport and the design of BT hybrid drugs for specific target tissues. The increased competition will change the global BT market fundamentally and a re-organisation according to large indication groups, such as therapeutic and cosmetic applications, might occur.

  7. [Applications of botulinum toxin in Neurology].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garcia-Ruiz, Pedro J

    2013-07-07

    At present, botulinum toxin (BT) is one of the most fundamental available drugs in Neurology, only comparable with levodopa. BT is currently used in those entities characterized by excessive muscle contraction, including dystonia and spasticity. In addition, BT has been used to control pain associated with increased muscle contraction in dystonia and spasticity, but also is useful to control chronic pain not associated with muscle contraction, such as chronic daily headache. Finally, BT is useful in sialorrhoea and bruxism. The mechanism of action is complex, mainly acting on terminal neuromuscular junction, but also exhibiting analgesic properties, probably through inhibition of pain neurotransmitters release. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier España, S.L. All rights reserved.

  8. Spore formation and toxin production in Clostridium difficile biofilms.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ekaterina G Semenyuk

    Full Text Available The ability to grow as a biofilm can facilitate survival of bacteria in the environment and promote infection. To better characterize biofilm formation in the pathogen Clostridium difficile, we established a colony biofilm culture method for this organism on a polycarbonate filter, and analyzed the matrix and the cells in biofilms from a variety of clinical isolates over several days of biofilm culture. We found that biofilms readily formed in all strains analyzed, and that spores were abundant within about 6 days. We also found that extracellular DNA (eDNA, polysaccharide and protein was readily detected in the matrix of all strains, including the major toxins A and/or B, in toxigenic strains. All the strains we analyzed formed spores. Apart from strains 630 and VPI10463, which sporulated in the biofilm at relatively low frequencies, the frequencies of biofilm sporulation varied between 46 and 65%, suggesting that variations in sporulation levels among strains is unlikely to be a major factor in variation in the severity of disease. Spores in biofilms also had reduced germination efficiency compared to spores obtained by a conventional sporulation protocol. Transmission electron microscopy revealed that in 3 day-old biofilms, the outermost structure of the spore is a lightly staining coat. However, after 6 days, material that resembles cell debris in the matrix surrounds the spore, and darkly staining granules are closely associated with the spores surface. In 14 day-old biofilms, relatively few spores are surrounded by the apparent cell debris, and the surface-associated granules are present at higher density at the coat surface. Finally, we showed that biofilm cells possess 100-fold greater resistance to the antibiotic metronidazole then do cells cultured in liquid media. Taken together, our data suggest that C. difficile cells and spores in biofilms have specialized properties that may facilitate infection.

  9. Spore formation and toxin production in Clostridium difficile biofilms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Semenyuk, Ekaterina G; Laning, Michelle L; Foley, Jennifer; Johnston, Pehga F; Knight, Katherine L; Gerding, Dale N; Driks, Adam

    2014-01-01

    The ability to grow as a biofilm can facilitate survival of bacteria in the environment and promote infection. To better characterize biofilm formation in the pathogen Clostridium difficile, we established a colony biofilm culture method for this organism on a polycarbonate filter, and analyzed the matrix and the cells in biofilms from a variety of clinical isolates over several days of biofilm culture. We found that biofilms readily formed in all strains analyzed, and that spores were abundant within about 6 days. We also found that extracellular DNA (eDNA), polysaccharide and protein was readily detected in the matrix of all strains, including the major toxins A and/or B, in toxigenic strains. All the strains we analyzed formed spores. Apart from strains 630 and VPI10463, which sporulated in the biofilm at relatively low frequencies, the frequencies of biofilm sporulation varied between 46 and 65%, suggesting that variations in sporulation levels among strains is unlikely to be a major factor in variation in the severity of disease. Spores in biofilms also had reduced germination efficiency compared to spores obtained by a conventional sporulation protocol. Transmission electron microscopy revealed that in 3 day-old biofilms, the outermost structure of the spore is a lightly staining coat. However, after 6 days, material that resembles cell debris in the matrix surrounds the spore, and darkly staining granules are closely associated with the spores surface. In 14 day-old biofilms, relatively few spores are surrounded by the apparent cell debris, and the surface-associated granules are present at higher density at the coat surface. Finally, we showed that biofilm cells possess 100-fold greater resistance to the antibiotic metronidazole then do cells cultured in liquid media. Taken together, our data suggest that C. difficile cells and spores in biofilms have specialized properties that may facilitate infection.

  10. Uric Acid: The Unknown Uremic Toxin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Treviño-Becerra, Alejandro

    2018-01-01

    This review brings together concepts of uric acid metabolism affecting renal parenchyma and its function and the current therapies to reduce hyperuricemia (HyU) and avoid renal disease progression. High uric acid plays an important role in several chronic diseases including kidney diseases such as lithiasis, gout nephropathy, and preeclampsia. In the last 30 years, it has been shown that reducing HyU with low protein and low purine diets in addition to allopurinol creates physiopathological conditions that produce a slight increase in the glomerular filtration rate (GFR). In recent years, in a new era of research in clinical, genetics, pharmacological, and epidemiologic fields, they have been moving forward to support the idea that reduction in HyU could benefit the chronic renal failure (CRF) patients (stage III-IV), thereby avoiding the drop of GFR for undefined mechanisms. There are several clinical trials in progress that show the HyU reducing to very low values and an increased GFR. In a young population, when treating HyU there is a reduction in high blood pressure. There are some reports showing that HyU could play a role in the diabetic nephropathy. Therefore, there have been some speculations that HyU treatment could stop the progression of CRF modifying the natural history of the diseases. So there will be new clinical trials with old and new medication and metabolic procedure to maintain a very low blood levels in the unknown uremic toxin know as uric acid which seems to be the toxin to the damage kidney. © 2018 S. Karger AG, Basel.

  11. Polycystic ovary syndrome and environmental toxins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rutkowska, Aleksandra Zofia; Diamanti-Kandarakis, Evanthia

    2016-09-15

    Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) is the most common, heterogeneous, and multifactorial endocrine disorder in premenopausal women. The pathophysiology of this endocrinopathy is still unclear; however, the heterogeneity of its features within ethnic races, geographic location, and families suggests that environment and lifestyle are of prime importance. This work is mainly focused on the possible role of the most common and studied environmental toxins for this syndrome in the pathogenesis of PCOS. Plasticizers, such as bisphenol A (BPA) or phthalates, which belong to the categories of endocrine disrupting chemicals (EDCs) and advanced glycation end products (AGEs), affect humans' health in everyday, industrialized life; therefore special attention should be paid to such exposure. Timing of exposure to EDCs is crucial for the intensity of adverse health effects. It is now evident that fetuses, infants, and/or young children are the most susceptible groups, especially in the early development periods. Prenatal exposure to EDCs that mimic endogenous hormones may contribute to the altered fetal programming and in consequence lead to PCOS and other adverse health effects, potentially transgenerationally. Acute or prolonged exposure to EDCs and AGEs through different life cycle stages may result in destabilization of the hormonal homeostasis and lead to disruption of reproductive functions. They may also interfere with metabolic alterations such as obesity, insulin resistance, and compensatory hyperinsulinemia that can exacerbate the PCOS phenotype and contribute to PCOS consequences such as type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease. Since wide exposure to environmental toxins and their role in the pathophysiology of PCOS are supported by extensive data derived from diverse scientific models, protective strategies and strong recommendations should be considered to reduce human exposure to protect present and future generations from their adverse health effects. Copyright

  12. Botulinum toxin A, brain and pain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Matak, Ivica; Lacković, Zdravko

    2014-01-01

    Botulinum neurotoxin type A (BoNT/A) is one of the most potent toxins known and a potential biological threat. At the same time, it is among the most widely used therapeutic proteins used yearly by millions of people, especially for cosmetic purposes. Currently, its clinical use in certain types of pain is increasing, and its long-term duration of effects represents a special clinical value. Efficacy of BoNT/A in different types of pain has been found in numerous clinical trials and case reports, as well as in animal pain models. However, sites and mechanisms of BoNT/A actions involved in nociception are a matter of controversy. In analogy with well known neuroparalytic effects in peripheral cholinergic synapses, presently dominant opinion is that BoNT/A exerts pain reduction by inhibiting peripheral neurotransmitter/inflammatory mediator release from sensory nerves. On the other hand, growing number of behavioral and immunohistochemical studies demonstrated the requirement of axonal transport for BoNT/A's antinociceptive action. In addition, toxin's enzymatic activity in central sensory regions was clearly identified after its peripheral application. Apart from general pharmacology, this review summarizes the clinical and experimental evidence for BoNT/A antinociceptive activity and compares the data in favor of peripheral vs. central site and mechanism of action. Based on literature review and published results from our laboratory we propose that the hypothesis of peripheral site of BoNT/A action is not sufficient to explain the experimental data collected up to now. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  13. Algal Toxins Alter Copepod Feeding Behavior

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hong, Jiarong; Talapatra, Siddharth; Katz, Joseph; Tester, Patricia A.; Waggett, Rebecca J.; Place, Allen R.

    2012-01-01

    Using digital holographic cinematography, we quantify and compare the feeding behavior of free-swimming copepods, Acartia tonsa, on nutritional prey (Storeatula major) to that occurring during exposure to toxic and non-toxic strains of Karenia brevis and Karlodinium veneficum. These two harmful algal species produce polyketide toxins with different modes of action and potency. We distinguish between two different beating modes of the copepod’s feeding appendages–a “sampling beating” that has short durations (<100 ms) and involves little fluid entrainment and a longer duration “grazing beating” that persists up to 1200 ms and generates feeding currents. The durations of both beating modes have log-normal distributions. Without prey, A. tonsa only samples the environment at low frequency. Upon introduction of non-toxic food, it increases its sampling time moderately and the grazing period substantially. On mono algal diets for either of the toxic dinoflagellates, sampling time fraction is high but the grazing is very limited. A. tonsa demonstrates aversion to both toxic algal species. In mixtures of S. major and the neurotoxin producing K. brevis, sampling and grazing diminish rapidly, presumably due to neurological effects of consuming brevetoxins while trying to feed on S. major. In contrast, on mixtures of cytotoxin producing K. veneficum, both behavioral modes persist, indicating that intake of karlotoxins does not immediately inhibit the copepod’s grazing behavior. These findings add critical insight into how these algal toxins may influence the copepod’s feeding behavior, and suggest how some harmful algal species may alter top-down control exerted by grazers like copepods. PMID:22629336

  14. Algal toxins alter copepod feeding behavior.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jiarong Hong

    Full Text Available Using digital holographic cinematography, we quantify and compare the feeding behavior of free-swimming copepods, Acartia tonsa, on nutritional prey (Storeatula major to that occurring during exposure to toxic and non-toxic strains of Karenia brevis and Karlodinium veneficum. These two harmful algal species produce polyketide toxins with different modes of action and potency. We distinguish between two different beating modes of the copepod's feeding appendages-a "sampling beating" that has short durations (<100 ms and involves little fluid entrainment and a longer duration "grazing beating" that persists up to 1200 ms and generates feeding currents. The durations of both beating modes have log-normal distributions. Without prey, A. tonsa only samples the environment at low frequency. Upon introduction of non-toxic food, it increases its sampling time moderately and the grazing period substantially. On mono algal diets for either of the toxic dinoflagellates, sampling time fraction is high but the grazing is very limited. A. tonsa demonstrates aversion to both toxic algal species. In mixtures of S. major and the neurotoxin producing K. brevis, sampling and grazing diminish rapidly, presumably due to neurological effects of consuming brevetoxins while trying to feed on S. major. In contrast, on mixtures of cytotoxin producing K. veneficum, both behavioral modes persist, indicating that intake of karlotoxins does not immediately inhibit the copepod's grazing behavior. These findings add critical insight into how these algal toxins may influence the copepod's feeding behavior, and suggest how some harmful algal species may alter top-down control exerted by grazers like copepods.

  15. Cellular recovery from exposure to sub-optimal concentrations of AB toxins that inhibit protein synthesis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shiga toxin 1, exotoxin A, diphtheria toxin and ricin are all AB-type protein toxins that act within the host cytosol to kill the host cell through a pathway involving the inhibition of protein synthesis. It is thought that a single molecule of cytosolic toxin is sufficient to kill the host cell. In...

  16. Cholera toxin can catalyze ADP-ribosylation of cytoskeletal proteins

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kaslow, H.R.; Groppi, V.E.; Abood, M.E.; Bourne, H.R.

    1981-01-01

    Cholera toxin catalyzes transfer of radiolabel from [ 32 P]NAD + to several peptides in particulate preparations of human foreskin fibroblasts. Resolution of these peptides by two-dimensional gel electrophoresis allowed identification of two peptides of M/sub r/ = 42,000 and 52,000 as peptide subunits of a regulatory component of adenylate cyclase. The radiolabeling of another group of peptides (M/sub r/ = 50,000 to 65,000) suggested that cholera toxin could catalyze ADP-ribosylation of cytoskeletal proteins. This suggestion was confirmed by showing that incubation with cholera toxin and [ 32 P]NAD + caused radiolabeling of purified microtubule and intermediate filament proteins

  17. Treatment of proctalgia fugax with botulinum A toxin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Katsinelos, P; Kalomenopoulou, M; Christodoulou, K; Katsiba, D; Tsolkas, P; Pilpilidis, I; Papagiannis, A; Kapitsinis, I; Vasiliadis, I; Souparis, T

    2001-11-01

    Two recent studies described a temporal association between a high-amplitude and high-frequency myoelectrical activity of the anal sphincter and the occurrence of proctalgia, which suggest that paroxysmal hyperkinesis of the anus may cause proctalgia fugax. We describe a single case of proctalgia fugax responding to anal sphincter injection of Clostridium botulinum type A toxin. The presumed aetiology of proctalgia fugax is discussed and the possible mechanism of action of botulinum toxin (BTX) in this condition is outlined. Botulinum A toxin seems to be a promising treatment for patients with proctalgia fugax, and further trials appear to be worthwhile for this condition, which has been described as incurable.

  18. Cosmetic Effect of Botulinum Toxin In Focal Hyperhydrosis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jain S

    2005-01-01

    Full Text Available Hyperhydrosis of axillae, palm and sole is not a very uncommon problem. It leads to great embarrassment and considerable emotional stress to the individuals. Botulinum toxins prevent the release of acetylcholine at nerve terminals, therefore, reduces sweat secretion. Six patients of axillary and 4 patients of palmer and planter hyperhydrosis were treated with botulinum toxin. All patients experienced relatively satisfactory reduction of hyperhydrosis for period ranging between 4-7 months. No adverse effects were observed. Botulinum toxin therefore can be considered as an effective treatment in focal hyperhydrosis.

  19. Rapid assessment of agents of biological terrorism: defining the differential diagnosis of inhalational anthrax using electronic communication in a practice-based research network.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Temte, Jonathan L; Anderson, Anna Lisa

    2004-01-01

    Early detection of bioterrorism requires assessment of diagnoses assigned to cases of rare diseases with which clinicians have little experience. In this study, we evaluated the process of defining the differential diagnosis for inhalational anthrax using electronic communication within a practice-based research network (PBRN) and compared the results with those obtained from a nationwide random sample of family physicians with a mailed instrument. We distributed survey instruments by e-mail to 55 physician members of the Wisconsin Research Network (WReN), a regional PBRN. The instruments consisted of 3 case vignettes randomly drawn from a set describing 11 patients with inhalational anthrax, 2 with influenza A, and 1 with Legionella pneumonia. Physicians provided their most likely nonanthrax diagnosis, along with their responses to 4 yes-or-no management questions for each case. Physicians who had not responded at 1 week received a second e-mail with the survey instrument. The comparison group consisted of the nationwide sample of physicians who completed mailed survey instruments. Primary outcome measures were response rate, median response time, and frequencies of diagnostic categories assigned to cases of inhalational anthrax. The PBRN response rate compared favorably with that of the national sample (47.3% vs 37.0%; P = not significant). The median response time for the PBRN was significantly shorter than that for the national sample (2 vs 28 days; P < .001). No significant differences were found between the PBRN and the Midwest subset of the national sample in the frequencies of major diagnostic categories or in case management. Electronic means of creating differential diagnoses for rare infectious diseases of national significance is feasible within PBRNs. Information is much more rapidly acquired and is consistent with that obtained by conventional methods.

  20. Dual lanthanide-doped complexes: the development of a time-resolved ratiometric fluorescent probe for anthrax biomarker and a paper-based visual sensor.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Qi-Xian; Xue, Shi-Fan; Chen, Zi-Han; Ma, Shi-Hui; Zhang, Shengqiang; Shi, Guoyue; Zhang, Min

    2017-08-15

    In this work, a novel time-resolved ratiometric fluorescent probe based on dual lanthanide (Tb: terbium, and Eu: europium)-doped complexes (Tb/DPA@SiO 2 -Eu/GMP) has been designed for detecting anthrax biomarker (dipicolinic acid, DPA), a unique and major component of anthrax spores. In such complexes-based probe, Tb/DPA@SiO 2 can serve as a stable reference signal with green fluorescence and Eu/GMP act as a sensitive response signal with red fluorescence for ratiometric fluorescent sensing DPA. Additionally, the probe exhibits long fluorescence lifetime, which can significantly reduce the autofluorescence interferences from biological samples by using time-resolved fluorescence measurement. More significantly, a paper-based visual sensor for DPA has been devised by using filter paper embedded with Tb/DPA@SiO 2 -Eu/GMP, and we have proved its utility for fluorescent detection of DPA, in which only a handheld UV lamp is used. In the presence of DPA, the paper-based visual sensor, illuminated by a handheld UV lamp, would result in an obvious fluorescence color change from green to red, which can be easily observed with naked eyes. The paper-based visual sensor is stable, portable, disposable, cost-effective and easy-to-use. The feasibility of using a smartphone with easy-to-access color-scanning APP as the detection platform for quantitative scanometric assays has been also demonstrated by coupled with our proposed paper-based visual sensor. This work unveils an effective method for accurate, sensitive and selective monitoring anthrax biomarker with backgroud-free and self-calibrating properties. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  1. Diminished but Not Abolished Effect of Two His351 Mutants of Anthrax Edema Factor in a Murine Model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhao, Taoran; Zhao, Xinghui; Liu, Ju; Meng, Yingying; Feng, Yingying; Fang, Ting; Zhang, Jinlong; Yang, Xiuxu; Li, Jianmin; Xu, Junjie; Chen, Wei

    2016-01-01

    Edema toxin (ET), which is composed of a potent adenylate cyclase (AC), edema factor (EF), and protective antigen (PA), is one of the major toxicity factors of Bacillus anthracis. In this study, we introduced mutations in full-length EF to generate alanine EF(H351A) and arginine EF(H351R) variants. In vitro activity analysis displayed that the adenylyl cyclase activity of both the mutants was significantly diminished compared with the wild-type EF. When the native and mutant toxins were administered subcutaneously in a mouse footpad edema model, severe acute swelling was evoked by wild-type ET, while the symptoms induced by mutant toxins were very minor. Systemic administration of these EF variants caused non-lethal hepatotoxicity. In addition, EF(H351R) exhibited slightly higher activity in causing more severe edema than EF(H351A). Our findings demonstrate that the toxicity of ET is not abolished by substitution of EF residue His351 by alanine or arginine. These results also indicate the potential of the mouse footpad edema model as a sensitive method for evaluating both ET toxicity and the efficacy of candidate therapeutic agents. PMID:26848687

  2. Effect of seawater salinity on pore-size distribution on a poly(styrene)-based HP20 resin and its adsorption of diarrhetic shellfish toxins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fan, Lin; Sun, Geng; Qiu, Jiangbing; Ma, Qimin; Hess, Philipp; Li, Aifeng

    2014-12-19

    In the present study, okadaic acid (OA) and dinophysistoxin-1 (DTX1) were spiked into artificial seawater at low, medium and high estuarine salinities (9‰, 13.5‰ and 27‰). Passive samplers (HP20 resin) used for solid phase adsorption toxin tracking (SPATT) technology were exposed in these seawaters for 12-h periods. Adsorption curves well fitted a pseudo-secondary kinetics model. The highest initial sorption rates of both toxins occurred in the seawater of medium salinity, followed by seawater of low and high estuarine salinity. Pore volumes of micropores (seawater at high and low salinity but not in seawater at medium salinity, which demonstrated that the toxin molecules entered into micropores and mesopores (below 10nm in size) in seawaters of high and low salinity. More toxin or other matrix agglomerates were displayed on the surface of resin deployed in the seawater of medium salinity. Taking into consideration the pore-size distribution and surface images, it appears that intra-particle diffusion governs toxin adsorption in seawater at high salinity while film diffusion mainly controls the adsorption process in seawater at medium salinity. This is the first study to confirm that molecules of OA and DTX1 are able to enter into micropores (seawater with high salinity (∼27‰). Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  3. Bacterial toxin-antitoxin systems: more than selfish entities?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van Melderen, Laurence; Saavedra De Bast, Manuel

    2009-03-01

    Bacterial toxin-antitoxin (TA) systems are diverse and widespread in the prokaryotic kingdom. They are composed of closely linked genes encoding a stable toxin that can harm the host cell and its cognate labile antitoxin, which protects the host from the toxin's deleterious effect. TA systems are thought to invade bacterial genomes through horizontal gene transfer. Some TA systems might behave as selfish elements and favour their own maintenance at the expense of their host. As a consequence, they may contribute to the maintenance of plasmids or genomic islands, such as super-integrons, by post-segregational killing of the cell that loses these genes and so suffers the stable toxin's destructive effect. The function of the chromosomally encoded TA systems is less clear and still open to debate. This Review discusses current hypotheses regarding the biological roles of these evolutionarily successful small operons. We consider the various selective forces that could drive the maintenance of TA systems in bacterial genomes.

  4. 42 CFR 73.3 - HHS select agents and toxins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-10-01

    ... been genetically modified. (d) HHS select agents or toxins that meet any of the following criteria are... Recombinant Organisms: (1) Nucleic acids that can produce infectious forms of any of the select agent viruses...

  5. 42 CFR 73.4 - Overlap select agents and toxins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-10-01

    ... genetically modified. (d) Overlap select agents or toxins that meet any of the following criteria are excluded... Equine Encephalitis virus (c) Genetic Elements, Recombinant Nucleic Acids, and Recombinant Organisms: (1...

  6. 7 CFR 331.3 - PPQ select agents and toxins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-01-01

    ...) Select agents and toxins listed in paragraph (b) of this section that have been genetically modified. (d... variegated chlorosis strain). (c) Genetic elements, recombinant nucleic acids, and recombinant organisms: (1...

  7. Webinar Presentation: The Impact of Toxins on the Developing Brain

    Science.gov (United States)

    This presentation, The Impact of Toxins on the Developing Brain, was given at the NIEHS/EPA Children's Centers 2015 Webinar Series: Historical Perspectives and Research Updates from Previously Funded Children's Centers held on Nov. 18, 2015.

  8. Three-Dimensional Structure Determination of Botulinum Toxin

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Stevens, Ray

    1997-01-01

    ...) Based on the structure of the neurotoxin, understand the toxins mechanism of action. We have accomplished the first goal of determining the three-dimensional structure of the 150 kD botulinum neurotoxin serotype...

  9. Three-Dimensional Structure Determination of Botulinum Toxin

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Stevens, Ray

    1998-01-01

    ...) Based on the structure of the neurotoxin, understand the toxins mechanism of action. We have accomplished the first goal of determining the three-dimensional structure of the 150 kD botulinum neurotoxin serotype...

  10. Occurrence and sequestration of toxins in food chains.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mebs, D

    1998-11-01

    Animals may acquire toxicity by absorbing toxic compounds from their food, e.g. from plants or other animals. Sequestration and accumulation of toxins may provide protection from predators, which learn to avoid this prey because of unpleasant experiences such as bitter taste. This is a common phenomenon in marine as well as in terrestrial ecosystems. Moreover, toxins may enter food chains where they accumulate reaching high, often lethal concentrations. Palytoxin which had been primarily detected in marine zoanthids (Palythoa sp.), occurs also in a wide range of other animals, e.g. in sponges, corals, shellfish, polychaetes and crustaceans, but also in fish, which feed on crustaceans and zoanthids as well. These animals exhibit a high resistance to the toxin's action. The mechanisms which protect the Na+, K+-ATPase of their cell membranes, the primary target of palytoxin, is unknown. Sequestration of the toxin by other animals may cause health problems due to food poisoning.

  11. EFEKTIFITAS TOXIN BOTULLINUM UNTUK MANAJEMEN BLEFAROSPASME ESSENSIAL DAN SPASME HEMIFASIAL

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hendriati Hendriati

    2010-09-01

    Full Text Available AbstrakUntuk mengukur efektifikas toxin Botullinum pada kasus-kasus okuloplastik (blefarospasme essensial dan spasme hemifasial.Laporan kasus 16 pasien yang terdiri dari 14 kasus spasme hemifasial dan 2 kasus blefarospasme essensial. Digunakan 6 vial toxin Botullinum. Vial pertama digunakan untuk pasien spasme hemifasial dan 1 pasien blefasrospasme di minggu berikutnya. vial kedua dan ketiga masing-masing digunakan untuk 2 pasien spasme hemifasial. Vial keempat digunakan untuk pasien blefarospasme yang menggunakan vial pertama (setelah 6 bulan, dan 1 pasien spasme hemifasial yang menggunakan vial kedua ( setelah 4 bulan dan 1 pasien spasme hemifasial baru. Setelah 1 minggu, toxin Botullinum vial keempat digunakan untuk 6 pasien spasme hemifasial dan 1 pasien blefarospasme essensial yang menggunakan vial pertama 8 hari berikutnya (setelah 7 bulan.Terdapat 16 pasien pada studi ini ; 14 spasme hemifasial dan 2 blefarospasme essensial. Pada 5 pasien dilakukan injeksi ulangan dengan jangka waktu yang berbeda. Tidak ditemukan efek samping pada pasien-pasien ini.Toxin Botulinum efektif untuk manajemen spasme hemifasial dan blefarospasme essensial tetapi efeknya temporer. Pada studi ini, jangka waktu injeksi ulangan bervariasi sekitar 4 – 7 bulan pada 5 pasien.Kata Kunci : Toxin Botulinum toxin, spasme hemifasial, blefarospasmeAbstractTo asses Botulinum Toxin efficacy in oculoplastic cases (blepharospasm and hemifacial spasm.A case report on 16 patients consisted of 14 hemifacial spasms and 2 essential blepharospasm. Six vials of botulinum toxin were used. First vial was used for two patients of hemifacial spasm and one blepharospasm patient one week later. Second and third vials were used each for two patients of hemifacial spasms. Fourth vial was used for one blepharospasm patient from first vial user (after six month, one hemifacial spasm from second vial user (after four months and one new hemifacial spasm. After one week, Botulinum toxin from

  12. Authentic display of a cholera toxin epitope by chimeric type 1 fimbriae

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Stentebjerg-Olesen, Bodil; Pallesen, Lars; Jensen, Lars Bogø

    1997-01-01

    . Several of the chosen positions seemed amenable even for large foreign inserts; the chimeric proteins were exposed on the bacterial surface and the cholera toxin epitope was authentically displayed, i.e. it was recognized on bacteria by specific antiserum. Display of chimeric fimbriae was tested...... with respect to host background in three different Escherichia coli strains, i.e. an isogenic set of K-12 strains, differing in the presence of an indigenous fim gene cluster, as well as a wild-type isolate. Immunization of rabbits with purified chimeric fimbriae resulted in serum which specifically recognized...

  13. 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.

  14. Genetic Markers for Western Corn Rootworm Resistance to Bt Toxin

    OpenAIRE

    Flagel, Lex E.; Swarup, Shilpa; Chen, Mao; Bauer, Christopher; Wanjugi, Humphrey; Carroll, Matthew; Hill, Patrick; Tuscan, Meghan; Bansal, Raman; Flannagan, Ronald; Clark, Thomas L.; Michel, Andrew P.; Head, Graham P.; Goldman, Barry S.

    2015-01-01

    Western corn rootworm (WCR) is a major maize (Zea mays L.) pest leading to annual economic losses of more than 1 billion dollars in the United States. Transgenic maize expressing insecticidal toxins derived from the bacterium Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt) are widely used for the management of WCR. However, cultivation of Bt-expressing maize places intense selection pressure on pest populations to evolve resistance. Instances of resistance to Bt toxins have been reported in WCR. Developing genet...

  15. Studies on marine toxins: chemical and biological aspects

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Stonik, Valentin A; Stonik, Inna V

    2010-01-01

    The structures and mechanisms of biological action of the best known representatives of the main groups of marine toxins are presented. It is shown that many compounds have complex chemical structures and possess extremely high toxicities. Characteristic features of isolation, structure determination and syntheses of these compounds using the achievement of modern organic chemistry are discussed. The methods of identification and quantitative analysis of marine toxins are briefly reviewed.

  16. Temperature Effects Explain Continental Scale Distribution of Cyanobacterial Toxins

    OpenAIRE

    Mantzouki, Evanthia; Lürling, Miquel; Fastner, Jutta; de Senerpont Domis, Lisette; Wilk-Woźniak, Elżbieta; Koreivienė, Judita; Seelen, Laura; Teurlincx, Sven; Verstijnen, Yvon; Krztoń, Wojciech; Walusiak, Edward; Karosienė, Jūratė; Kasperovičienė, Jūratė; Savadova, Ksenija; Vitonytė, Irma

    2018-01-01

    Insight into how environmental change determines the production and distribution of cyanobacterial toxins is necessary for risk assessment. Management guidelines currently focus on hepatotoxins (microcystins). Increasing attention is given to other classes, such as neurotoxins (e.g., anatoxin-a) and cytotoxins (e.g., cylindrospermopsin) due to their potency. Most studies examine the relationship between individual toxin variants and environmental factors, such as nutrients, temperature and li...

  17. Temperature effects explain continental scale distribution of cyanobacterial toxins

    OpenAIRE

    Mantzouki, Evanthia; Lürling, Miquel; Fastner, Jutta; de Senerpont Domis, Lisette; Wilk-Woźniak, Elżbieta; Koreivienė, Judita; Seelen, Laura; Teurlincx, Sven; Verstijnen, Yvon; Krztoń, Wojciech; Walusiak, Edward; Karosienė, Jūratė; Kasperovičienė, Jūratė; Savadova, Ksenija; Vitonytė, Irma

    2018-01-01

    Insight into how environmental change determines the production and distribution of cyanobacterial toxins is necessary for risk assessment. Management guidelines currently focus on hepatotoxins (microcystins). Increasing attention is given to other classes, such as neurotoxins (e.g., anatoxin-a) and cytotoxins (e.g., cylindrospermopsin) due to their potency. Most studies examine the relationship between individual toxin variants and environmental factors, such as nutrients, temperature and li...

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Joseph Chavarría-Smith

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

  19. Molecular epidemiology of anthrax cases associated with recreational use of animal hides and yarn in the United States.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chung K Marston

    Full Text Available To determine potential links between the clinical isolate to animal products and their geographic origin, we genotyped (MLVA-8, MVLA-15, and canSNP analysis 80 environmental and 12 clinical isolates and 2 clinical specimens from five cases of anthrax (California in 1976 [n = 1], New York in 2006 [n = 1], Connecticut in 2007 [n = 2], and New Hampshire in 2009[n = 1] resulting from recreational handling of animal products. For the California case, four clinical isolates were identified as MLVA-8 genotype (GT 76 and in the canSNP A.Br.Vollum lineage, which is consistent with the Pakistani origin of the yarn. Twenty eight of the California isolates were in the A.Br.Vollum canSNP lineage and one isolate was in the A.Br. 003/004 canSNP sub-group. All 52 isolates and both clinical specimens related to the New York and Connecticut cases were MLVA-8 GT 1. The animal products associated with the NY and CT cases were believed to originate from West Africa, but no isolates from this region are available to be genotyped for comparison. All isolates associated with the New Hampshire case were identical and had a new genotype (GT 149. Isolates from the NY, CT and NH cases diverge from the established canSNP phylogeny near the base of the A.Br.011/009. This report illustrates the power of the current genotyping methods and the dramatically different epidemiological conditions that can lead to infections (i.e., contamination by a single genotype versus widespread contamination of numerous genotypes. These cases illustrate the need to acquire and genotype global isolates so that accurate assignments can be made about isolate origins.

  20. Doc toxin is a kinase that inactivates elongation factor Tu.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cruz, Jonathan W; Rothenbacher, Francesca P; Maehigashi, Tatsuya; Lane, William S; Dunham, Christine M; Woychik, Nancy A

    2014-03-14

    The Doc toxin from bacteriophage P1 (of the phd-doc toxin-antitoxin system) has served as a model for the family of Doc toxins, many of which are harbored in the genomes of pathogens. We have shown previously that the mode of action of this toxin is distinct from the majority derived from toxin-antitoxin systems: it does not cleave RNA; in fact P1 Doc expression leads to mRNA stabilization. However, the molecular triggers that lead to translation arrest are not understood. The presence of a Fic domain, albeit slightly altered in length and at the catalytic site, provided a clue to the mechanism of P1 Doc action, as most proteins with this conserved domain inactivate GTPases through addition of an adenylyl group (also referred to as AMPylation). We demonstrated that P1 Doc added a single phosphate group to the essential translation elongation factor and GTPase, elongation factor (EF)-Tu. The phosphorylation site was at a highly conserved threonine, Thr-382, which was blocked when EF-Tu was treated with the antibiotic kirromycin. Therefore, we have established that Fic domain proteins can function as kinases. This distinct enzymatic activity exhibited by P1 Doc also solves the mystery of the degenerate Fic motif unique to the Doc family of toxins. Moreover, we have established that all characterized Fic domain proteins, even those that phosphorylate, target pivotal GTPases for inactivation through a post-translational modification at a single functionally critical acceptor site.