WorldWideScience

Sample records for understating bacterial virulence

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krieger, John N; Thumbikat, Praveen

    2016-02-01

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

  2. Structural Genomics of Bacterial Virulence Factors

    Science.gov (United States)

    2006-05-01

    Moller, T., T. Franch , P. Hojrup, D.R. Keene, H.P. Bachinger, R.G. Brennan, and P. Valentin-Hansen. 2002. Hfq: a bacterial Sm-like protein that...level, an unre- sponsiveness to external stimuli, or an inability to obtain readily available food or water, along with any of the following accompa

  3. Rapid Identification of Bacterial Virulence Factors

    Science.gov (United States)

    2014-04-15

    protein sorting and transport. F/’/wyi-deletion mutants had decreased invasiveness of HeLa cells when compared to their parental strain, and it has...mileux. Bacteria with intracellular life styles and have reductive genomes often have many different ABC transporters. This is certainly the case in...34 Microbiology 151:2975-2986. Newman , R.M., P. Salunkhe, A. Godzik, J.C. Reed. 2006. Identification and Characterization of a Novel Bacterial

  4. Regulation of bacterial virulence by Csr (Rsm) systems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vakulskas, Christopher A; Potts, Anastasia H; Babitzke, Paul; Ahmer, Brian M M; Romeo, Tony

    2015-06-01

    Most bacterial pathogens have the remarkable ability to flourish in the external environment and in specialized host niches. This ability requires their metabolism, physiology, and virulence factors to be responsive to changes in their surroundings. It is no surprise that the underlying genetic circuitry that supports this adaptability is multilayered and exceedingly complex. Studies over the past 2 decades have established that the CsrA/RsmA proteins, global regulators of posttranscriptional gene expression, play important roles in the expression of virulence factors of numerous proteobacterial pathogens. To accomplish these tasks, CsrA binds to the 5' untranslated and/or early coding regions of mRNAs and alters translation, mRNA turnover, and/or transcript elongation. CsrA activity is regulated by noncoding small RNAs (sRNAs) that contain multiple CsrA binding sites, which permit them to sequester multiple CsrA homodimers away from mRNA targets. Environmental cues sensed by two-component signal transduction systems and other regulatory factors govern the expression of the CsrA-binding sRNAs and, ultimately, the effects of CsrA on secretion systems, surface molecules and biofilm formation, quorum sensing, motility, pigmentation, siderophore production, and phagocytic avoidance. This review presents the workings of the Csr system, the paradigm shift that it generated for understanding posttranscriptional regulation, and its roles in virulence networks of animal and plant pathogens. Copyright © 2015, American Society for Microbiology. All Rights Reserved.

  5. Pneumococcal lipoproteins involved in bacterial fitness, virulence, and immune evasion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kohler, Sylvia; Voß, Franziska; Gómez Mejia, Alejandro; Brown, Jeremy S; Hammerschmidt, Sven

    2016-11-01

    Streptococcus pneumoniae (pneumococcus) has evolved sophisticated strategies to survive in several niches within the human body either as a harmless commensal or as a serious pathogen causing a variety of diseases. The dynamic interaction between pneumococci and resident host cells during colonization of the upper respiratory tract and at the site of infection is critical for bacterial survival and the development of disease. Pneumococcal lipoproteins are peripherally anchored membrane proteins and have pivotal roles in bacterial fitness including envelope stability, cell division, nutrient acquisition, signal transduction, transport (as substrate-binding proteins of ABC transporter systems), resistance to oxidative stress and antibiotics, and protein folding. In addition, lipoproteins are directly involved in virulence-associated processes such as adhesion, colonization, and persistence through immune evasion. Conversely, lipoproteins are also targets for the host response both as ligands for toll-like receptors and as targets for acquired antibodies. This review summarizes the multifaceted roles of selected pneumococcal lipoproteins and how this knowledge can be exploited to combat pneumococcal infections. © 2016 Federation of European Biochemical Societies.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2012-08-16

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

  7. Life history trade-offs and relaxed selection can decrease bacterial virulence in environmental reservoirs.

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    Lauri Mikonranta

    Full Text Available Pathogen virulence is usually thought to evolve in reciprocal selection with the host. While this might be true for obligate pathogens, the life histories of opportunistic pathogens typically alternate between within-host and outside-host environments during the infection-transmission cycle. As a result, opportunistic pathogens are likely to experience conflicting selection pressures across different environments, and this could affect their virulence through life-history trait correlations. We studied these correlations experimentally by exposing an opportunistic bacterial pathogen Serratia marcescens to its natural protist predator Tetrahymena thermophila for 13 weeks, after which we measured changes in bacterial traits related to both anti-predator defence and virulence. We found that anti-predator adaptation (producing predator-resistant biofilm caused a correlative attenuation in virulence. Even though the direct mechanism was not found, reduction in virulence was most clearly connected to a predator-driven loss of a red bacterial pigment, prodigiosin. Moreover, life-history trait evolution was more divergent among replicate populations in the absence of predation, leading also to lowered virulence in some of the 'predator absent' selection lines. Together these findings suggest that the virulence of non-obligatory, opportunistic bacterial pathogens can decrease in environmental reservoirs through life history trade-offs, or random accumulation of mutations that impair virulence traits under relaxed selection.

  8. Bacterial Human Virulence Genes across Diverse Habitats As Assessed by In silico Analysis of Environmental Metagenomes

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Søborg, Ditte A; Hendriksen, Niels B; Kilian, Mogens

    2016-01-01

    of natural environments in the evolution of bacterial virulence. Twenty four bacterial virulence genes were analyzed in 46 diverse environmental metagenomic datasets, representing various soils, seawater, freshwater, marine sediments, hot springs, the deep-sea, hypersaline mats, microbialites, gutless worms......The occurrence and distribution of clinically relevant bacterial virulence genes across natural (non-human) environments is not well understood. We aimed to investigate the occurrence of homologs to bacterial human virulence genes in a variety of ecological niches to better understand the role...... in non-human environments point to an important ecological role of the genes for the activity and survival of environmental bacteria. Furthermore, the high degree of sequence conservation between several of the environmental and clinical genes suggests common ancestral origins....

  9. Distribution Patterns of Polyphosphate Metabolism Pathway and Its Relationships With Bacterial Durability and Virulence

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    Liang Wang

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available Inorganic polyphosphate (polyP is a linear polymer of orthophosphate residues. It is reported to be present in all life forms. Experimental studies showed that polyP plays important roles in bacterial durability and virulence. Here we investigated the relationships of polyP with bacterial durability and virulence theoretically. Bacterial lifestyle, environmental persistence, virulence factors (VFs, and species evolution are all included in the analysis. The presence of seven genes involved in polyP metabolism (ppk1, ppk2, pap, surE, gppA, ppnK, and ppgK and 2595 core VFs were verified in 944 bacterial reference proteomes for distribution patterns via HMMER. Proteome size and VFs were compared in terms of gain and loss of polyP pathway. Literature mining and phylogenetic analysis were recruited to support the study. Our analyzes revealed that the presence of polyP metabolism is positively correlated with bacterial proteome size and the number of virulence genes. A potential relationship of polyP in bacterial lifestyle and environmental durability is suggested. Evolutionary analysis shows that polyP genes are randomly lost along the phylogenetic tree. In sum, based on our theoretical analysis, we confirmed that bacteria with polyP metabolism are associated with high environmental durability and more VFs.

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

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Jaing, C

    2007-11-01

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

  11. Long-distance delivery of bacterial virulence factors by Pseudomonas aeruginosa outer membrane vesicles.

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    Jennifer M Bomberger

    2009-04-01

    Full Text Available Bacteria use a variety of secreted virulence factors to manipulate host cells, thereby causing significant morbidity and mortality. We report a mechanism for the long-distance delivery of multiple bacterial virulence factors, simultaneously and directly into the host cell cytoplasm, thus obviating the need for direct interaction of the pathogen with the host cell to cause cytotoxicity. We show that outer membrane-derived vesicles (OMV secreted by the opportunistic human pathogen Pseudomonas aeruginosa deliver multiple virulence factors, including beta-lactamase, alkaline phosphatase, hemolytic phospholipase C, and Cif, directly into the host cytoplasm via fusion of OMV with lipid rafts in the host plasma membrane. These virulence factors enter the cytoplasm of the host cell via N-WASP-mediated actin trafficking, where they rapidly distribute to specific subcellular locations to affect host cell biology. We propose that secreted virulence factors are not released individually as naked proteins into the surrounding milieu where they may randomly contact the surface of the host cell, but instead bacterial derived OMV deliver multiple virulence factors simultaneously and directly into the host cell cytoplasm in a coordinated manner.

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

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    Bing Zhang

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

  13. The Sit-and-Wait Hypothesis in Bacterial Pathogens: A Theoretical Study of Durability and Virulence

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    Liang Wang

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available The intriguing sit-and-wait hypothesis predicts that bacterial durability in the external environment is positively correlated with their virulence. Since its first proposal in 1987, the hypothesis has been spurring debates in terms of its validity in the field of bacterial virulence. As a special case of the vector-borne transmission versus virulence tradeoff, where vector is now replaced by environmental longevity, there are only sporadic studies over the last three decades showing that environmental durability is possibly linked with virulence. However, no systematic study of these works is currently available and epidemiological analysis has not been updated for the sit-and-wait hypothesis since the publication of Walther and Ewald’s (2004 review. In this article, we put experimental evidence, epidemiological data and theoretical analysis together to support the sit-and-wait hypothesis. According to the epidemiological data in terms of gain and loss of virulence (+/- and durability (+/- phenotypes, we classify bacteria into four groups, which are: sit-and-wait pathogens (++, vector-borne pathogens (+-, obligate-intracellular bacteria (--, and free-living bacteria (-+. After that, we dive into the abundant bacterial proteomic data with the assistance of bioinformatics techniques in order to investigate the two factors at molecular level thanks to the fast development of high-throughput sequencing technology. Sequences of durability-related genes sourced from Gene Ontology and UniProt databases and virulence factors collected from Virulence Factor Database are used to search 20 corresponding bacterial proteomes in batch mode for homologous sequences via the HMMER software package. Statistical analysis only identified a modest, and not statistically significant correlation between mortality and survival time for eight non-vector-borne bacteria with sit-and-wait potentials. Meanwhile, through between-group comparisons, bacteria with higher

  14. The use of transpositional mutagenesis to study bacterial virulence

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mousa, M.A.B.

    1989-01-01

    Extracellular protease of A. hydrophila was shown to be lethal factor for fish. Protease deficient mutants were obtained from A. hydrophila strain 79. A. hydrophila was mutagenized by inserting Tn10 (tetracycline resistance factor) into the chromosome. This was achieved by conjugation between A. hydrophila and E. coli which contains Tn10 carried on the suicide vector pRK2013. Virulence of the protease deficient mutants was determined by injecting into channel catfish and comparing the mortalities produced by the mutants to that produced by the wild type strain. Protease deficient isolates were non virulent when inoculated into channel catfish (compared to the wild type strain). Proteolytic activities of some protease deficient isolates were compared to the activities of the wild type strain using a quantitative plate technique. The following substrates were used to study the proteolytic activities: casein, gelatin, elastin, staphylococcus and klebsiella. Loss of the proteolytic activity of caseinase, gelatinase and elastase was associated with the loss of virulence of A. hydrophila. Acquiring the DNA from the media was studied using a new transformation technique; no artificial competence was provided. A strain of Escherchi coli, Edwardsiella ictaluri, and Aeromonas hydrophila acquired antibiotic resistance markers when they were grown on media containing the target antibiotic and the resistance markers. When homologous and heterologous 32 P-labelled DNA were supplied to growing cultures of A. hydrophila, A. hydrophila cells and their chromosomes were found labelled. Total cellular radioactivity of the culture receiving heterologous labelled DNA was higher than the culture receiving homologous DNA; however the chromosomal radioactivity was on the opposite where it was higher in case of the culture receiving homologous DNA

  15. [Effect of the 10 kb sequence of piscine Streptococcus agalactiae on bacterial virulence].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Guangjin; Zhu, Jielian; Shi, Ziwei; Ding, Ming; Wang, Ruyi; Yao, Huochun; Lu, Chengping; Xu, Pao

    2016-01-04

    From the previous comparative genomic analysis, we found a specific unknown 10 kb sequence (including 11 Open reading Frames) in Chinese piscine strain GD201008-001 genome. To study the role of 10 kb in the pathogenicity of piscine S. agalactiae, the 10 kb sequence was deleted from the GD201008-001 genome. The isogenic mutant Δ10 kb was constructed by using the temperature-sensitive Streptococcus-E. coli shuttle vector pSET4s. We compared the growth characteristics, adherence to HEp-2 cell and bacterial virulence in a zebrafish infection model between wild strain and mutant. Meanwhile the expressions of the known virulence genes from GD201008-001 and Δ10 kb were also quantified by real-time PCR. The Δ10 kb showed no significant differences in bacterial morphology and adherence to HEp-2 cells compared with the wild-type strain, but the speed of growth was slightly slower than the wild strain. Furthermore the 50% lethal dose of Δ10 kb was decreased up to 10-fold (P kb sequence of piscine Streptococcus agalactiae exerts a significant effect on bacterial virulence and probably regulates the virulence genes expression of GD20 1008-001.

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

    KAUST Repository

    Weynberg, Karen D.

    2015-12-08

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

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

    KAUST Repository

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

    2015-01-01

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

  18. Novel cyclic di-GMP effectors of the YajQ protein family control bacterial virulence.

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    Shi-qi An

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available Bis-(3',5' cyclic di-guanylate (cyclic di-GMP is a key bacterial second messenger that is implicated in the regulation of many critical processes that include motility, biofilm formation and virulence. Cyclic di-GMP influences diverse functions through interaction with a range of effectors. Our knowledge of these effectors and their different regulatory actions is far from complete, however. Here we have used an affinity pull-down assay using cyclic di-GMP-coupled magnetic beads to identify cyclic di-GMP binding proteins in the plant pathogen Xanthomonas campestris pv. campestris (Xcc. This analysis identified XC_3703, a protein of the YajQ family, as a potential cyclic di-GMP receptor. Isothermal titration calorimetry showed that the purified XC_3703 protein bound cyclic di-GMP with a high affinity (K(d∼2 µM. Mutation of XC_3703 led to reduced virulence of Xcc to plants and alteration in biofilm formation. Yeast two-hybrid and far-western analyses showed that XC_3703 was able to interact with XC_2801, a transcription factor of the LysR family. Mutation of XC_2801 and XC_3703 had partially overlapping effects on the transcriptome of Xcc, and both affected virulence. Electromobility shift assays showed that XC_3703 positively affected the binding of XC_2801 to the promoters of target virulence genes, an effect that was reversed by cyclic di-GMP. Genetic and functional analysis of YajQ family members from the human pathogens Pseudomonas aeruginosa and Stenotrophomonas maltophilia showed that they also specifically bound cyclic di-GMP and contributed to virulence in model systems. The findings thus identify a new class of cyclic di-GMP effector that regulates bacterial virulence.

  19. Endogenous CO2 may inhibit bacterial growth and induce virulence gene expression in enteropathogenic Escherichia coli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martínez, Haydee; Buhse, Thomas; Rivera, Marco; Parmananda, P; Ayala, Guadalupe; Sánchez, Joaquín

    2012-07-01

    Analysis of the growth kinetics of enteropathogenic Escherichia coli (EPEC) revealed that growth was directly proportional to the ratio between the exposed surface area and the liquid culture volume (SA/V). It was hypothesized that this bacterial behavior was caused by the accumulation of an endogenous volatile growth inhibitor metabolite whose escape from the medium directly depended on the SA/V. The results of this work support the theory that an inhibitor is produced and indicate that it is CO(2). We also report that concomitant to the accumulation of CO(2), there is secretion of the virulence-related EspB and EspC proteins from EPEC. We therefore postulate that endogenous CO(2) may have an effect on both bacterial growth and virulence. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  20. Elongation factor P mediates a novel post-transcriptional regulatory pathway critical for bacterial virulence

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Zou, S Betty; Roy, Hervé; Ibba, Michael

    2012-01-01

    Bacterial pathogens detect and integrate multiple environmental signals to coordinate appropriate changes in gene expression including the selective expression of virulence factors, changes to metabolism and the activation of stress response systems. Mutations that abolish the ability of the path......Bacterial pathogens detect and integrate multiple environmental signals to coordinate appropriate changes in gene expression including the selective expression of virulence factors, changes to metabolism and the activation of stress response systems. Mutations that abolish the ability...... our laboratory and others now suggests that EF-P, previously thought to be essential, instead plays an ancillary role in translation by regulating the synthesis of a relatively limited subset of proteins. Other observations suggest that the eukaryotic homolog of EF-P, eIF5A, may illicit similar...

  1. Development of Quorum-Based Anti-Virulence Therapeutics Targeting Gram-Negative Bacterial Pathogens

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    Wen Shan Yew

    2013-08-01

    Full Text Available Quorum sensing is a cell density-dependent signaling phenomenon used by bacteria for coordination of population-wide phenotypes, such as expression of virulence genes, antibiotic resistance and biofilm formation. Lately, disruption of bacterial communication has emerged as an anti-virulence strategy with enormous therapeutic potential given the increasing incidences of drug resistance in pathogenic bacteria. The quorum quenching therapeutic approach promises a lower risk of resistance development, since interference with virulence generally does not affect the growth and fitness of the bacteria and, hence, does not exert an associated selection pressure for drug-resistant strains. With better understanding of bacterial communication networks and mechanisms, many quorum quenching methods have been developed against various clinically significant bacterial pathogens. In particular, Gram-negative bacteria are an important group of pathogens, because, collectively, they are responsible for the majority of hospital-acquired infections. Here, we discuss the current understanding of existing quorum sensing mechanisms and present important inhibitory strategies that have been developed against this group of pathogenic bacteria.

  2. Helicobacter pylori infection: An overview of bacterial virulence factors and pathogenesis

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    Cheng-Yen Kao

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available Helicobacter pylori pathogenesis and disease outcomes are mediated by a complex interplay between bacterial virulence factors, host, and environmental factors. After H. pylori enters the host stomach, four steps are critical for bacteria to establish successful colonization, persistent infection, and disease pathogenesis: (1 Survival in the acidic stomach; (2 movement toward epithelium cells by flagella-mediated motility; (3 attachment to host cells by adhesins/receptors interaction; (4 causing tissue damage by toxin release. Over the past 20 years, the understanding of H. pylori pathogenesis has been improved by studies focusing on the host and bacterial factors through epidemiology researches and molecular mechanism investigations. These include studies identifying the roles of novel virulence factors and their association with different disease outcomes, especially the bacterial adhesins, cag pathogenicity island, and vacuolating cytotoxin. Recently, the development of large-scale screening methods, including proteomic, and transcriptomic tools, has been used to determine the complex gene regulatory networks in H. pylori. In addition, a more available complete genomic database of H. pylori strains isolated from patients with different gastrointestinal diseases worldwide is helpful to characterize this bacterium. This review highlights the key findings of H. pylori virulence factors reported over the past 20 years.

  3. Multidrug Efflux Pumps at the Crossroad between Antibiotic Resistance and Bacterial Virulence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alcalde-Rico, Manuel; Hernando-Amado, Sara; Blanco, Paula; Martínez, José L

    2016-01-01

    Multidrug efflux pumps can be involved in bacterial resistance to antibiotics at different levels. Some efflux pumps are constitutively expressed at low levels and contribute to intrinsic resistance. In addition, their overexpression may allow higher levels of resistance. This overexpression can be transient, in the presence of an effector (phenotypic resistance), or constitutive when mutants in the regulatory elements of the expression of efflux pumps are selected (acquired resistance). Efflux pumps are present in all cells, from human to bacteria and are highly conserved, which indicates that they are ancient elements in the evolution of different organisms. Consequently, it has been suggested that, besides antibiotic resistance, bacterial multidrug efflux pumps would likely contribute to other relevant processes of the microbial physiology. In the current article, we discuss some specific examples of the role that efflux pumps may have in the bacterial virulence of animals' and plants' pathogens, including the processes of intercellular communication. Based in these evidences, we propose that efflux pumps are at the crossroad between resistance and virulence of bacterial pathogens. Consequently, the comprehensive study of multidrug efflux pumps requires addressing these functions, which are of relevance for the bacterial-host interactions during infection.

  4. Multidrug efflux pumps at the crossroad between antibiotic resistance and bacterial virulence

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    Manuel Alcalde-Rico

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available Multidrug efflux pumps can be involved in bacterial resistance to antibiotics at different levels. Some efflux pumps are constitutively expressed at low levels and contribute to intrinsic resistance. In addition, their overexpression may allow higher levels of resistance. This overexpression can be transient, in the presence of an effector (phenotypic resistance, or constitutive when mutants in the regulatory elements of the expression of efflux pumps are selected (acquired resistance. Efflux pumps are present in all cells, from human to bacteria and are highly conserved, which indicates that they are ancient elements in the evolution of different organisms. Consequently, it has been suggested that, besides antibiotic resistance, bacterial multidrug efflux pumps would likely contribute to other relevant process of the microbial physiology. In the current article, we discuss some specific examples of the role that efflux pumps may have in the bacterial virulence of animals' and plants' pathogens, including the processes of intercellular communication. Based in these evidences, we propose that efflux pumps are at the crossroad between resistance and virulence of bacterial pathogens. Consequently, the comprehensive study of multidrug efflux pumps requires addressing these functions, which are of relevance for the bacterial-host interactions during infection.

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

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    Samuel A Shelburne

    2010-03-01

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

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

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    Niraj Shrestha

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

  7. Fitness and virulence of a bacterial endoparasite in an environmentally stressed crustacean host.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coors, Anja; De Meester, Luc

    2011-01-01

    Host-parasite interactions are shaped by the co-evolutionary arms race of parasite virulence, transmission success as well as host resistance and recovery. The virulence and fitness of parasites may depend on host condition, which is mediated, for instance, by host energy constraints. Here, we investigated to what extent stress imposed by predation threat and environmental pollutants influences host-parasite interactions. We challenged the crustacean host Daphnia magna with the sterilizing bacterial endoparasite Pasteuria ramosa and simultaneously exposed the host to fish kairomones, the pesticide carbaryl or both stressors. While parasite virulence, measured as impact on host mortality and sterilization, increased markedly after short-term pesticide exposure, it was not influenced by predation threat. Parasite fitness, measured in terms of produced transmission stages, decreased both in fish and pesticide treatments. This effect was much stronger under predation threat than carbaryl exposure, and was attributable to reduced somatic growth of the host, presumably resulting in fewer resources for parasite development. While the indirect impact of both stressors on spore loads provides evidence for host condition-dependent parasite fitness, the finding of increased virulence only under carbaryl exposure indicates a stronger physiological impact of the neurotoxic chemical compared with the effect of a non-toxic fish kairomone.

  8. Spaceflight and Simulated Microgravity Increases Virulence of the Known Bacterial Pathogen S. Marcescens

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clemens-Grisham, Rachel Andrea; Bhattacharya, Sharmila; Wade, William

    2016-01-01

    After spaceflight, the number of immune cells is reduced in humans. In other research models, including Drosophila, not only is there a reduction in the number of plasmatocytes, but expression of immune-related genes is also changed after spaceflight. These observations suggest that the immune system is compromised after exposure to microgravity. It has also been reported that there is a change in virulence of some bacterial pathogens after spaceflight. We recently observed that samples of gram-negative S. marcescens retrieved from spaceflight is more virulent than ground controls, as determined by reduced survival and increased bacterial growth in the host. We were able to repeat this finding of increased virulence after exposure to simulated microgravity using the rotating wall vessel, a ground based analog to microgravity. With the ground and spaceflight samples, we looked at involvement of the Toll and Imd pathways in the Drosophila host in fighting infection by ground and spaceflight samples. We observed that Imd-pathway mutants were more susceptible to infection by the ground bacterial samples, which aligns with the known role of this pathway in fighting infections by gram-negative bacteria. When the Imd-pathway mutants were infected with the spaceflight sample, however, they exhibited the same susceptibility as seen with the ground control bacteria. Interestingly, all mutant flies show the same susceptibility to the spaceflight bacterial sample as do wild type flies. This suggests that neither humoral immunity pathway is effectively able to counter the increased pathogenicity of the space-flown S. marcescens bacteria.

  9. Reduced Set of Virulence Genes Allows High Accuracy Prediction of Bacterial Pathogenicity in Humans

    Science.gov (United States)

    Iraola, Gregorio; Vazquez, Gustavo; Spangenberg, Lucía; Naya, Hugo

    2012-01-01

    Although there have been great advances in understanding bacterial pathogenesis, there is still a lack of integrative information about what makes a bacterium a human pathogen. The advent of high-throughput sequencing technologies has dramatically increased the amount of completed bacterial genomes, for both known human pathogenic and non-pathogenic strains; this information is now available to investigate genetic features that determine pathogenic phenotypes in bacteria. In this work we determined presence/absence patterns of different virulence-related genes among more than finished bacterial genomes from both human pathogenic and non-pathogenic strains, belonging to different taxonomic groups (i.e: Actinobacteria, Gammaproteobacteria, Firmicutes, etc.). An accuracy of 95% using a cross-fold validation scheme with in-fold feature selection is obtained when classifying human pathogens and non-pathogens. A reduced subset of highly informative genes () is presented and applied to an external validation set. The statistical model was implemented in the BacFier v1.0 software (freely available at ), that displays not only the prediction (pathogen/non-pathogen) and an associated probability for pathogenicity, but also the presence/absence vector for the analyzed genes, so it is possible to decipher the subset of virulence genes responsible for the classification on the analyzed genome. Furthermore, we discuss the biological relevance for bacterial pathogenesis of the core set of genes, corresponding to eight functional categories, all with evident and documented association with the phenotypes of interest. Also, we analyze which functional categories of virulence genes were more distinctive for pathogenicity in each taxonomic group, which seems to be a completely new kind of information and could lead to important evolutionary conclusions. PMID:22916122

  10. Targeting Bacterial Dsb Proteins for the Development of Anti-Virulence Agents

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    Roxanne P. Smith

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available Recent years have witnessed a dramatic increase in bacterial antimicrobial resistance and a decline in the development of novel antibiotics. New therapeutic strategies are urgently needed to combat the growing threat posed by multidrug resistant bacterial infections. The Dsb disulfide bond forming pathways are potential targets for the development of antimicrobial agents because they play a central role in bacterial pathogenesis. In particular, the DsbA/DsbB system catalyses disulfide bond formation in a wide array of virulence factors, which are essential for many pathogens to establish infections and cause disease. These redox enzymes are well placed as antimicrobial targets because they are taxonomically widespread, share low sequence identity with human proteins, and many years of basic research have provided a deep molecular understanding of these systems in bacteria. In this review, we discuss disulfide bond catalytic pathways in bacteria and their significance in pathogenesis. We also review the use of different approaches to develop inhibitors against Dsb proteins as potential anti-virulence agents, including fragment-based drug discovery, high-throughput screening and other structure-based drug discovery methods.

  11. Pathogenicity of a Very Virulent Strain of Marek's Disease Herpesvirus Cloned as Infectious Bacterial Artificial Chromosomes

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    Lorraine P. Smith

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Bacterial artificial chromosome (BAC vectors containing the full-length genomes of several herpesviruses have been used widely as tools to enable functional studies of viral genes. Marek's disease viruses (MDVs are highly oncogenic alphaherpesviruses that induce rapid-onset T-cell lymphomas in chickens. Oncogenic strains of MDV reconstituted from BAC clones have been used to examine the role of viral genes in inducing tumours. Past studies have demonstrated continuous increase in virulence of MDV strains. We have previously reported on the UK isolate C12/130 that showed increased virulence features including lymphoid organ atrophy and enhanced tropism for the central nervous system. Here we report the construction of the BAC clones (pC12/130 of this strain. Chickens were infected with viruses reconstituted from the pC12/130 clones along with the wild-type virus for the comparison of the pathogenic properties. Our studies show that BAC-derived viruses induced disease similar to the wild-type virus, though there were differences in the levels of pathogenicity between individual viruses. Generation of BAC clones that differ in the potential to induce cytolytic disease provide the opportunity to identify the molecular determinants of increased virulence by direct sequence analysis as well as by using reverse genetics approaches on the infectious BAC clones.

  12. Proteomics as a tool for studying bacterial virulence and antimicrobial resistance

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    Francisco José Pérez -Llarena

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available Proteomic studies have improved our understanding of the microbial world. The most recent advances in this field have helped us to explore aspects beyond genomics. For example, by studying proteins and their regulation, researchers now understand how some pathogenic bacteria have adapted to the lethal actions of antibiotics. Proteomics has also advanced our knowledge of mechanisms of bacterial virulence and some important aspects of how bacteria interact with human cells and, thus, of the pathogenesis of infectious diseases. This review article addresses these issues in some of the most important human pathogens. It also reports some applications of MALDI-TOF mass spectrometry that may be important for the diagnosis of bacterial resistance in clinical laboratories in the future. The reported advances will enable new diagnostic and therapeutic strategies to be developed in the fight against some of the most lethal bacteria affecting humans.

  13. Cold Plasma Inactivation of Bacterial Biofilms and Reduction of Quorum Sensing Regulated Virulence Factors.

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    Dana Ziuzina

    Full Text Available The main objectives of this work were to investigate the effect of atmospheric cold plasma (ACP against a range of microbial biofilms commonly implicated in foodborne and healthcare associated human infections and against P. aeruginosa quorum sensing (QS-regulated virulence factors, such as pyocyanin, elastase (Las B and biofilm formation capacity post-ACP treatment. The effect of processing factors, namely treatment time and mode of plasma exposure on antimicrobial activity of ACP were also examined. Antibiofilm activity was assessed for E. coli, L. monocytogenes and S. aureus in terms of reduction of culturability and retention of metabolic activity using colony count and XTT assays, respectively. All samples were treated 'inpack' using sealed polypropylene containers with a high voltage dielectric barrier discharge ACP generated at 80 kV for 0, 60, 120 and 300 s and a post treatment storage time of 24 h. According to colony counts, ACP treatment for 60 s reduced populations of E. coli to undetectable levels, whereas 300 s was necessary to significantly reduce populations of L. monocytogenes and S. aureus biofilms. The results obtained from XTT assay indicated possible induction of viable but non culturable state of bacteria. With respect to P. aeruginosa QS-related virulence factors, the production of pyocyanin was significantly inhibited after short treatment times, but reduction of elastase was notable only after 300 s and no reduction in actual biofilm formation was achieved post-ACP treatment. Importantly, reduction of virulence factors was associated with reduction of the cytotoxic effects of the bacterial supernatant on CHO-K1 cells, regardless of mode and duration of treatment. The results of this study point to ACP technology as an effective strategy for inactivation of established biofilms and may play an important role in attenuation of virulence of pathogenic bacteria. Further investigation is warranted to propose direct evidence

  14. Extracellular DNases of Ralstonia solanacearum modulate biofilms and facilitate bacterial wilt virulence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Minh Tran, Tuan; MacIntyre, April; Khokhani, Devanshi; Hawes, Martha; Allen, Caitilyn

    2016-11-01

    Ralstonia solanacearum is a soil-borne vascular pathogen that colonizes plant xylem vessels, a flowing, low-nutrient habitat where biofilms could be adaptive. Ralstonia solanacearum forms biofilm in vitro, but it was not known if the pathogen benefits from biofilms during infection. Scanning electron microscopy revealed that during tomato infection, R. solanacearum forms biofilm-like masses in xylem vessels. These aggregates contain bacteria embedded in a matrix including chromatin-like fibres commonly observed in other bacterial biofilms. Chemical and enzymatic assays demonstrated that the bacterium releases extracellular DNA in culture and that DNA is an integral component of the biofilm matrix. An R. solanacearum mutant lacking the pathogen's two extracellular nucleases (exDNases) formed non-spreading colonies and abnormally thick biofilms in vitro. The biofilms formed by the exDNase mutant in planta contained more and thicker fibres. This mutant was also reduced in virulence on tomato plants and did not spread in tomato stems as well as the wild-type strain, suggesting that these exDNases facilitate biofilm maturation and bacterial dispersal. To our knowledge, this is the first demonstration that R. solanacearum forms biofilms in plant xylem vessels, and the first documentation that plant pathogens use DNases to modulate their biofilm structure for systemic spread and virulence. © 2016 Society for Applied Microbiology and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  15. Non-thermal Plasma Exposure Rapidly Attenuates Bacterial AHL-Dependent Quorum Sensing and Virulence

    Science.gov (United States)

    Flynn, Padrig B.; Busetti, Alessandro; Wielogorska, Ewa; Chevallier, Olivier P.; Elliott, Christopher T.; Laverty, Garry; Gorman, Sean P.; Graham, William G.; Gilmore, Brendan F.

    2016-01-01

    The antimicrobial activity of atmospheric pressure non-thermal plasma has been exhaustively characterised, however elucidation of the interactions between biomolecules produced and utilised by bacteria and short plasma exposures are required for optimisation and clinical translation of cold plasma technology. This study characterizes the effects of non-thermal plasma exposure on acyl homoserine lactone (AHL)-dependent quorum sensing (QS). Plasma exposure of AHLs reduced the ability of such molecules to elicit a QS response in bacterial reporter strains in a dose-dependent manner. Short exposures (30–60 s) produce of a series of secondary compounds capable of eliciting a QS response, followed by the complete loss of AHL-dependent signalling following longer exposures. UPLC-MS analysis confirmed the time-dependent degradation of AHL molecules and their conversion into a series of by-products. FT-IR analysis of plasma-exposed AHLs highlighted the appearance of an OH group. In vivo assessment of the exposure of AHLs to plasma was examined using a standard in vivo model. Lettuce leaves injected with the rhlI/lasI mutant PAO-MW1 alongside plasma treated N-butyryl-homoserine lactone and n-(3-oxo-dodecanoyl)-homoserine lactone, exhibited marked attenuation of virulence. This study highlights the capacity of atmospheric pressure non-thermal plasma to modify and degrade AHL autoinducers thereby attenuating QS-dependent virulence in P. aeruginosa. PMID:27242335

  16. Acidic pH sensing in the bacterial cytoplasm is required for Salmonella virulence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Choi, Jeongjoon; Groisman, Eduardo A

    2016-09-01

    pH regulates gene expression, biochemical activities and cellular behaviors. A mildly acidic pH activates the master virulence regulatory system PhoP/PhoQ in the facultative intracellular pathogen Salmonella enterica serovar Typhimurium. The sensor PhoQ harbors an extracytoplasmic domain implicated in signal sensing, and a cytoplasmic domain controlling activation of the regulator PhoP. We now report that, surprisingly, a decrease in Salmonella's own cytoplasmic pH induces transcription of PhoP-activated genes even when the extracytoplasmic pH remains neutral. Amino acid substitutions in PhoQ's cytoplasmic domain hindered activation by acidic pH and attenuated virulence in mice, but did not abolish activation by low Mg(2+) or the antimicrobial peptide C18G. Conversely, removal of PhoQ's extracytoplasmic domains prevented the response to the latter PhoQ-activating signals but not to acidic pH. PhoP-dependent genes were minimally induced by acidic pH in the non-pathogenic species Salmonella bongori but were activated by low Mg(2+) and C18G as in pathogenic S. enterica. Our findings indicate that the sensor PhoQ enables S. enterica to respond to both host- and bacterial-derived signals that alter its cytoplasmic pH. © 2016 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  17. Modulation of Candida albicans virulence by bacterial biofilms on titanium surfaces.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cavalcanti, Yuri Wanderley; Wilson, Melanie; Lewis, Michael; Del-Bel-Cury, Altair Antoninha; da Silva, Wander José; Williams, David W

    2016-01-01

    Whilst Candida albicans occurs in peri-implant biofilms, its role in peri-implantitis remains unclear. This study therefore examined the virulence of C. albicans in mixed-species biofilms on titanium surfaces. Biofilms of C. albicans (Ca), C. albicans with streptococci (Streptococcus sanguinis, S. mutans) (Ca-Ss-Sm) and those incorporating Porphyromonas gingivalis (Ca-Pg and Ca-Ss-Sm-Pg) were developed. Expression of C. albicans genes associated with adhesion (ALS1, ALS3, HWP1) and hydrolytic enzymes (SAP2, SAP4, SAP6, PLD1) was measured and hyphal production by C. albicans quantified. Compared with Ca biofilms, significant (pbiofilms containing streptococci (Ca-Ss-Sm). In Ca-Pg biofilms, down-regulation of HWP1 and SAP4 expression, with reduced hyphal production occurred. Ca-Ss-Sm-Pg biofilms had increased hyphal proportions and up-regulation of ALS3, SAP2 and SAP6. In conclusion, C. albicans expressed virulence factors in biofilms that could contribute to peri-implantitis, but this was dependent on associated bacterial species.

  18. A Common Structural Motif in the Binding of Virulence Factors to Bacterial Secretion Chaperones

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lilic, M.; Vujanac, M.; Stebbins, C.

    2006-01-01

    Salmonella invasion protein A (SipA) is translocated into host cells by a type III secretion system (T3SS) and comprises two regions: one domain binds its cognate type III secretion chaperone, InvB, in the bacterium to facilitate translocation, while a second domain functions in the host cell, contributing to bacterial uptake by polymerizing actin. We present here the crystal structures of the SipA chaperone binding domain (CBD) alone and in complex with InvB. The SipA CBD is found to consist of a nonglobular polypeptide as well as a large globular domain, both of which are necessary for binding to InvB. We also identify a structural motif that may direct virulence factors to their cognate chaperones in a diverse range of pathogenic bacteria. Disruption of this structural motif leads to a destabilization of several chaperone-substrate complexes from different species, as well as an impairment of secretion in Salmonella

  19. Spaceflight Alters Bacterial Gene Expression and Virulence and Reveals Role for Global Regulator Hfq

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilson, J. W.; Ott, C. M.; zuBentrup, K. Honer; Ramamurthy R.; Quick, L.; Porwollik, S.; Cheng, P.; McClellan, M.; Tsaprailis, G.; Radabaugh, T.; hide

    2007-01-01

    A comprehensive analysis of both the molecular genetic and phenotypic responses of any organism to the spaceflight environment has never been accomplished due to significant technological and logistical hurdles. Moreover, the effects of spaceflight on microbial pathogenicity and associated infectious disease risks have not been studied. The bacterial pathogen Salmonella typhimurium was grown aboard Space Shuttle mission STS-115 and compared to identical ground control cultures. Global microarray and proteomic analyses revealed 167 transcripts and 73 proteins changed expression with the conserved RNA-binding protein Hfq identified as a likely global regulator involved in the response to this environment. Hfq involvement was confirmed with a ground based microgravity culture model. Spaceflight samples exhibited enhanced virulence in a murine infection model and extracellular matrix accumulation consistent with a biofilm. Strategies to target Hfq and related regulators could potentially decrease infectious disease risks during spaceflight missions and provide novel therapeutic options on Earth.

  20. The Role of Biotin in Bacterial Physiology and Virulence: a Novel Antibiotic Target for Mycobacterium tuberculosis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Salaemae, Wanisa; Booker, Grant W; Polyak, Steven W

    2016-04-01

    Biotin is an essential cofactor for enzymes present in key metabolic pathways such as fatty acid biosynthesis, replenishment of the tricarboxylic acid cycle, and amino acid metabolism. Biotin is synthesized de novo in microorganisms, plants, and fungi, but this metabolic activity is absent in mammals, making biotin biosynthesis an attractive target for antibiotic discovery. In particular, biotin biosynthesis plays important metabolic roles as the sole source of biotin in all stages of the Mycobacterium tuberculosis life cycle due to the lack of a transporter for scavenging exogenous biotin. Biotin is intimately associated with lipid synthesis where the products form key components of the mycobacterial cell membrane that are critical for bacterial survival and pathogenesis. In this review we discuss the central role of biotin in bacterial physiology and highlight studies that demonstrate the importance of its biosynthesis for virulence. The structural biology of the known biotin synthetic enzymes is described alongside studies using structure-guided design, phenotypic screening, and fragment-based approaches to drug discovery as routes to new antituberculosis agents.

  1. Low virulence bacterial infections in cervical intervertebral discs: a prospective case series.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Yilei; Wang, Xianjun; Zhang, Xuyang; Ren, Hong; Huang, Bao; Chen, Jian; Liu, Junhui; Shan, Zhi; Zhu, Zhihai; Zhao, Fengdong

    2018-04-19

    A prospective cross-sectional case series study. To investigate the prevalence of low virulence disc infection and its associations with characteristics of patients or discs in the cervical spine. Low virulence bacterial infections could be a possible cause of intervertebral disc degeneration and/or back pain. Controversies are continuing over whether these bacteria, predominantly Propionibacterium acnes (P. acnes), represent infection or contamination. However, the current studies mainly focus on the lumbar spine, with very limited data on the cervical spine. Thirty-two patients (20 men and 12 women) who underwent anterior cervical fusion for degenerative cervical spondylosis or traumatic cervical cord injury were enrolled. Radiological assessments included X-ray, CT, and MRI of the cervical spine. Endplate Modic changes, intervertebral range of motion, and disc herniation type were evaluated. Disc and muscle tissues were collected under strict sterile conditions. Samples were enriched in tryptone soy broth and subcultured under anaerobic conditions, followed by identification of the resulting colonies by the PCR method. Sixty-six intervertebral discs were excised from thirty-two patients. Positive disc cultures were noted in eight patients (25%) and in nine discs (13.6%). The muscle biopsy (control) cultures were negative in 28 patients and positive in 4 patients (12.5%); three of whom had a negative disc culture. Seven discs (10.6%) were positive for coagulase-negative Staphylococci (CNS) and two discs were positive for P. acnes (3.0%). A younger patient age and the extrusion or sequestration type of disc herniation, which represented a complete annulus fibrous failure, were associated with positive disc culture. Our data show that CNS is more prevalent than P. acnes in degenerative cervical discs. The infection route in cervical discs may be predominantly through an annulus fissure. Correlation between these infections and clinical symptoms is uncertain

  2. A Bacterial Pathogen Displaying Temperature-Enhanced Virulence of the Microalga Emiliania huxleyi.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mayers, Teaghan J; Bramucci, Anna R; Yakimovich, Kurt M; Case, Rebecca J

    2016-01-01

    shown to have acquired resistance against EhVs at elevated temperature, bacterial pathogens with temperature-dependent virulence, such as R11, may become much more important in the ecology of E. huxleyi in a warming climate.

  3. A Bacterial Pathogen Displaying Temperature-Enhanced Virulence of the Microalga Emiliania huxleyi

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mayers, Teaghan J.; Bramucci, Anna R.; Yakimovich, Kurt M.; Case, Rebecca J.

    2016-01-01

    recently been shown to have acquired resistance against EhVs at elevated temperature, bacterial pathogens with temperature-dependent virulence, such as R11, may become much more important in the ecology of E. huxleyi in a warming climate. PMID:27379036

  4. Nutrition and Helicobacter pylori: Host Diet and Nutritional Immunity Influence Bacterial Virulence and Disease Outcome

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    Kathryn P. Haley

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Helicobacter pylori colonizes the stomachs of greater than 50% of the world’s human population making it arguably one of the most successful bacterial pathogens. Chronic H. pylori colonization results in gastritis in nearly all patients; however in a subset of people, persistent infection with H. pylori is associated with an increased risk for more severe disease outcomes including B-cell lymphoma of mucosal-associated lymphoid tissue (MALT lymphoma and invasive adenocarcinoma. Research aimed at elucidating determinants that mediate disease progression has revealed genetic differences in both humans and H. pylori which increase the risk for developing gastric cancer. Furthermore, host diet and nutrition status have been shown to influence H. pylori-associated disease outcomes. In this review we will discuss how H. pylori is able to create a replicative niche within the hostile host environment by subverting and modifying the host-generated immune response as well as successfully competing for limited nutrients such as transition metals by deploying an arsenal of metal acquisition proteins and virulence factors. Lastly, we will discuss how micronutrient availability or alterations in the gastric microbiome may exacerbate negative disease outcomes associated with H. pylori colonization.

  5. Antibiotic Resistance and Virulence Phenotypes of Recent Bacterial Strains Isolated from Urinary Tract Infections in Elderly Patients with Prostatic Disease

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    Cristina Delcaru

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available Acute bacterial prostatitis is one of the frequent complications of urinary tract infection (UTI. From the approximately 10% of men having prostatitis, 7% experience a bacterial prostatitis. The purpose of this study was to investigate the prevalence of uropathogens associated with UTIs in older patients with benign prostatic hyperplasia and to assess their susceptibility to commonly prescribed antibiotics as well as the relationships between microbial virulence and resistance features. Uropathogenic Escherichia coli was found to be the most frequent bacterial strain isolated from patients with benign prostatic hyperplasia, followed by Enterococcus spp., Enterobacter spp., Klebsiella spp., Proteus spp., Pseudomonas aeruginosa, and Serratia marcescens. Increased resistance rates to tetracyclines, quinolones, and sulfonamides were registered. Besides their resistance profiles, the uropathogenic isolates produced various virulence factors with possible implications in the pathogenesis process. The great majority of the uropathogenic isolates revealed a high capacity to adhere to HEp-2 cell monolayer in vitro, mostly exhibiting a localized adherence pattern. Differences in the repertoire of soluble virulence factors that can affect bacterial growth and persistence within the urinary tract were detected. The Gram-negative strains produced pore-forming toxins—such as hemolysins, lecithinases, and lipases—proteases, siderophore-like molecules resulted from the esculin hydrolysis and amylases, while Enterococcus sp. strains were positive only for caseinase and esculin hydrolase. Our study demonstrates that necessity of investigating the etiology and local resistance patterns of uropathogenic organisms, which is crucial for determining appropriate empirical antibiotic treatment in elderly patients with UTI, while establishing correlations between resistance and virulence profiles could provide valuable input about the clinical evolution and

  6. T3SEdb: data warehousing of virulence effectors secreted by the bacterial Type III Secretion System.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tay, Daniel Ming Ming; Govindarajan, Kunde Ramamoorthy; Khan, Asif M; Ong, Terenze Yao Rui; Samad, Hanif M; Soh, Wei Wei; Tong, Minyan; Zhang, Fan; Tan, Tin Wee

    2010-10-15

    Effectors of Type III Secretion System (T3SS) play a pivotal role in establishing and maintaining pathogenicity in the host and therefore the identification of these effectors is important in understanding virulence. However, the effectors display high level of sequence diversity, therefore making the identification a difficult process. There is a need to collate and annotate existing effector sequences in public databases to enable systematic analyses of these sequences for development of models for screening and selection of putative novel effectors from bacterial genomes that can be validated by a smaller number of key experiments. Herein, we present T3SEdb http://effectors.bic.nus.edu.sg/T3SEdb, a specialized database of annotated T3SS effector (T3SE) sequences containing 1089 records from 46 bacterial species compiled from the literature and public protein databases. Procedures have been defined for i) comprehensive annotation of experimental status of effectors, ii) submission and curation review of records by users of the database, and iii) the regular update of T3SEdb existing and new records. Keyword fielded and sequence searches (BLAST, regular expression) are supported for both experimentally verified and hypothetical T3SEs. More than 171 clusters of T3SEs were detected based on sequence identity comparisons (intra-cluster difference up to ~60%). Owing to this high level of sequence diversity of T3SEs, the T3SEdb provides a large number of experimentally known effector sequences with wide species representation for creation of effector predictors. We created a reliable effector prediction tool, integrated into the database, to demonstrate the application of the database for such endeavours. T3SEdb is the first specialised database reported for T3SS effectors, enriched with manual annotations that facilitated systematic construction of a reliable prediction model for identification of novel effectors. The T3SEdb represents a platform for inclusion of

  7. T3SEdb: data warehousing of virulence effectors secreted by the bacterial Type III Secretion System

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tong Minyan

    2010-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Effectors of Type III Secretion System (T3SS play a pivotal role in establishing and maintaining pathogenicity in the host and therefore the identification of these effectors is important in understanding virulence. However, the effectors display high level of sequence diversity, therefore making the identification a difficult process. There is a need to collate and annotate existing effector sequences in public databases to enable systematic analyses of these sequences for development of models for screening and selection of putative novel effectors from bacterial genomes that can be validated by a smaller number of key experiments. Results Herein, we present T3SEdb http://effectors.bic.nus.edu.sg/T3SEdb, a specialized database of annotated T3SS effector (T3SE sequences containing 1089 records from 46 bacterial species compiled from the literature and public protein databases. Procedures have been defined for i comprehensive annotation of experimental status of effectors, ii submission and curation review of records by users of the database, and iii the regular update of T3SEdb existing and new records. Keyword fielded and sequence searches (BLAST, regular expression are supported for both experimentally verified and hypothetical T3SEs. More than 171 clusters of T3SEs were detected based on sequence identity comparisons (intra-cluster difference up to ~60%. Owing to this high level of sequence diversity of T3SEs, the T3SEdb provides a large number of experimentally known effector sequences with wide species representation for creation of effector predictors. We created a reliable effector prediction tool, integrated into the database, to demonstrate the application of the database for such endeavours. Conclusions T3SEdb is the first specialised database reported for T3SS effectors, enriched with manual annotations that facilitated systematic construction of a reliable prediction model for identification of novel effectors

  8. A nonluminescent and highly virulent Vibrio harveyi strain is associated with "bacterial white tail disease" of Litopenaeus vannamei shrimp.

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    Junfang Zhou

    Full Text Available Recurrent outbreaks of a disease in pond-cultured juvenile and subadult Litopenaeus vannamei shrimp in several districts in China remain an important problem in recent years. The disease was characterized by "white tail" and generally accompanied by mass mortalities. Based on data from the microscopical analyses, PCR detection and 16S rRNA sequencing, a new Vibrio harveyi strain (designated as strain HLB0905 was identified as the etiologic pathogen. The bacterial isolation and challenge tests demonstrated that the HLB0905 strain was nonluminescent but highly virulent. It could cause mass mortality in affected shrimp during a short time period with a low dose of infection. Meanwhile, the histopathological and electron microscopical analysis both showed that the HLB0905 strain could cause severe fiber cell damages and striated muscle necrosis by accumulating in the tail muscle of L. vannamei shrimp, which led the affected shrimp to exhibit white or opaque lesions in the tail. The typical sign was closely similar to that caused by infectious myonecrosis (IMN, white tail disease (WTD or penaeid white tail disease (PWTD. To differentiate from such diseases as with a sign of "white tail" but of non-bacterial origin, the present disease was named as "bacterial white tail disease (BWTD". Present study revealed that, just like IMN and WTD, BWTD could also cause mass mortalities in pond-cultured shrimp. These results suggested that some bacterial strains are changing themselves from secondary to primary pathogens by enhancing their virulence in current shrimp aquaculture system.

  9. Role of the Genes of Type VI Secretion System in Virulence of Rice Bacterial Brown Stripe Pathogen Acidovorax avenae subsp. avenae Strain RS-2

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    Md. Mahidul Islam Masum

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available The Type VI secretion system (T6SS is a class of macromolecular machine that is required for the virulence of gram-negative bacteria. However, it is still not clear what the role of T6SS in the virulence of rice bacterial brown stripe pathogen Acidovorax avenae subsp. avenae (Aaa is. The aim of the current study was to investigate the contribution of T6SS in Aaa strain RS2 virulence using insertional deletion mutation and complementation approaches. This strain produced weak virulence but contains a complete T6SS gene cluster based on a genome-wide analysis. Here we compared the virulence-related phenotypes between the wild-type (RS-2 and 25 T6SS mutants, which were constructed using homologous recombination methods. The mutation of 15 T6SS genes significantly reduced bacterial virulence and the secretion of Hcp protein. Additionally, the complemented 7 mutations ΔpppA, ΔclpB, Δhcp, ΔdotU, ΔicmF, ΔimpJ, and ΔimpM caused similar virulence characteristics as RS-2. Moreover, the mutant ΔpppA, ΔclpB, ΔicmF, ΔimpJ and ΔimpM genes caused by a 38.3~56.4% reduction in biofilm formation while the mutants ΔpppA, ΔclpB, ΔicmF and Δhcp resulted in a 37.5~44.6% reduction in motility. All together, these results demonstrate that T6SS play vital roles in the virulence of strain RS-2, which may be partially attributed to the reductions in Hcp secretion, biofilm formation and motility. However, differences in virulence between strain RS-1 and RS-2 suggest that other factors may also be involved in the virulence of Aaa.

  10. Role of the Genes of Type VI Secretion System in Virulence of Rice Bacterial Brown Stripe Pathogen Acidovorax avenae subsp. avenae Strain RS-2.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Masum, Md Mahidul Islam; Yang, Yingzi; Li, Bin; Olaitan, Ogunyemi Solabomi; Chen, Jie; Zhang, Yang; Fang, Yushi; Qiu, Wen; Wang, Yanli; Sun, Guochang

    2017-09-21

    The Type VI secretion system (T6SS) is a class of macromolecular machine that is required for the virulence of gram-negative bacteria. However, it is still not clear what the role of T6SS in the virulence of rice bacterial brown stripe pathogen Acidovorax avenae subsp. avenae (Aaa) is. The aim of the current study was to investigate the contribution of T6SS in Aaa strain RS2 virulence using insertional deletion mutation and complementation approaches. This strain produced weak virulence but contains a complete T6SS gene cluster based on a genome-wide analysis. Here we compared the virulence-related phenotypes between the wild-type (RS-2) and 25 T6SS mutants, which were constructed using homologous recombination methods. The mutation of 15 T6SS genes significantly reduced bacterial virulence and the secretion of Hcp protein. Additionally, the complemented 7 mutations Δ pppA , Δ clpB , Δ hcp , Δ dotU , Δ icmF , Δ impJ , and Δ impM caused similar virulence characteristics as RS-2. Moreover, the mutant Δ pppA , Δ clpB , Δ icmF , Δ impJ and Δ impM genes caused by a 38.3~56.4% reduction in biofilm formation while the mutants Δ pppA , Δ clpB , Δ icmF and Δ hcp resulted in a 37.5~44.6% reduction in motility. All together, these results demonstrate that T6SS play vital roles in the virulence of strain RS-2, which may be partially attributed to the reductions in Hcp secretion, biofilm formation and motility. However, differences in virulence between strain RS-1 and RS-2 suggest that other factors may also be involved in the virulence of Aaa.

  11. Proteomic analysis of growth phase-dependent expression of Legionella pneumophila proteins which involves regulation of bacterial virulence traits.

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    Tsuyoshi Hayashi

    Full Text Available Legionella pneumophila, which is a causative pathogen of Legionnaires' disease, expresses its virulent traits in response to growth conditions. In particular, it is known to become virulent at a post-exponential phase in vitro culture. In this study, we performed a proteomic analysis of differences in expression between the exponential phase and post-exponential phase to identify candidates associated with L. pneumophila virulence using 2-Dimentional Fluorescence Difference Gel Electrophoresis (2D-DIGE combined with Matrix-Assisted Laser Desorption/Ionization-Mass Spectrometry (MALDI-TOF-MS. Of 68 identified proteins that significantly differed in expression between the two growth phases, 64 were up-regulated at a post-exponential phase. The up-regulated proteins included enzymes related to glycolysis, ketone body biogenesis and poly-3-hydroxybutyrate (PHB biogenesis, suggesting that L. pneumophila may utilize sugars and lipids as energy sources, when amino acids become scarce. Proteins related to motility (flagella components and twitching motility-associated proteins were also up-regulated, predicting that they enhance infectivity of the bacteria in host cells under certain conditions. Furthermore, 9 up-regulated proteins of unknown function were found. Two of them were identified as novel bacterial factors associated with hemolysis of sheep red blood cells (SRBCs. Another 2 were found to be translocated into macrophages via the Icm/Dot type IV secretion apparatus as effector candidates in a reporter assay with Bordetella pertussis adenylate cyclase. The study will be helpful for virulent analysis of L. pneumophila from the viewpoint of physiological or metabolic modulation dependent on growth phase.

  12. Inactivation of the Ecs ABC transporter of Staphylococcus aureus attenuates virulence by altering composition and function of bacterial wall.

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    Ing-Marie Jonsson

    2010-12-01

    Full Text Available Ecs is an ATP-binding cassette (ABC transporter present in aerobic and facultative anaerobic gram-positive Firmicutes. Inactivation of Bacillus subtilis Ecs causes pleiotropic changes in the bacterial phenotype including inhibition of intramembrane proteolysis. The molecule(s transported by Ecs is (are still unknown.In this study we mutated the ecsAB operon in two Staphylococcus aureus strains, Newman and LS-1. Phenotypic and functional characterization of these Ecs deficient mutants revealed a defect in growth, increased autolysis and lysostaphin sensitivity, altered composition of cell wall proteins including the precursor form of staphylokinase and an altered bacterial surface texture. DNA microarray analysis indicated that the Ecs deficiency changed expression of the virulence factor regulator protein Rot accompanied by differential expression of membrane transport proteins, particularly ABC transporters and phosphate-specific transport systems, protein A, adhesins and capsular polysaccharide biosynthesis proteins. Virulence of the ecs mutants was studied in a mouse model of hematogenous S. aureus infection. Mice inoculated with the ecs mutant strains developed markedly milder infections than those inoculated with the wild-type strains and had consequently lower mortality, less weight loss, milder arthritis and decreased persistence of staphylococci in the kidneys. The ecs mutants had higher susceptibility to ribosomal antibiotics and plant alkaloids chelerythrine and sanguinarine.Our results show that Ecs is essential for staphylococcal virulence and antimicrobial resistance probably since the transport function of Ecs is essential for the normal structure and function of the cell wall. Thus targeting Ecs may be a new approach in combating staphylococcal infection.

  13. Inactivation of the Ecs ABC transporter of Staphylococcus aureus attenuates virulence by altering composition and function of bacterial wall.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jonsson, Ing-Marie; Juuti, Jarmo T; François, Patrice; AlMajidi, Rana; Pietiäinen, Milla; Girard, Myriam; Lindholm, Catharina; Saller, Manfred J; Driessen, Arnold J M; Kuusela, Pentti; Bokarewa, Maria; Schrenzel, Jacques; Kontinen, Vesa P

    2010-12-02

    Ecs is an ATP-binding cassette (ABC) transporter present in aerobic and facultative anaerobic gram-positive Firmicutes. Inactivation of Bacillus subtilis Ecs causes pleiotropic changes in the bacterial phenotype including inhibition of intramembrane proteolysis. The molecule(s) transported by Ecs is (are) still unknown. In this study we mutated the ecsAB operon in two Staphylococcus aureus strains, Newman and LS-1. Phenotypic and functional characterization of these Ecs deficient mutants revealed a defect in growth, increased autolysis and lysostaphin sensitivity, altered composition of cell wall proteins including the precursor form of staphylokinase and an altered bacterial surface texture. DNA microarray analysis indicated that the Ecs deficiency changed expression of the virulence factor regulator protein Rot accompanied by differential expression of membrane transport proteins, particularly ABC transporters and phosphate-specific transport systems, protein A, adhesins and capsular polysaccharide biosynthesis proteins. Virulence of the ecs mutants was studied in a mouse model of hematogenous S. aureus infection. Mice inoculated with the ecs mutant strains developed markedly milder infections than those inoculated with the wild-type strains and had consequently lower mortality, less weight loss, milder arthritis and decreased persistence of staphylococci in the kidneys. The ecs mutants had higher susceptibility to ribosomal antibiotics and plant alkaloids chelerythrine and sanguinarine. Our results show that Ecs is essential for staphylococcal virulence and antimicrobial resistance probably since the transport function of Ecs is essential for the normal structure and function of the cell wall. Thus targeting Ecs may be a new approach in combating staphylococcal infection.

  14. Cytokine responses in primary chicken embryo intestinal cells infected with Campylobacter jejuni strains of human and chicken origin and the expression of bacterial virulence-associated genes

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Li, Yiping; Ingmer, Hanne; Madsen, Mogens

    2008-01-01

    of the bacterial genes. We have investigated the invasiveness of primary chicken embryo intestinal cells (CEICs) by C. jejuni strains of human and chicken origins and the production of pro-inflammatory cytokines as well as the expression of the bacterial virulence-associated genes during co-cultivation. Results C......-free media from another co-cultivation experiment also increased the expression of the virulence-associated genes in the C. jejuni chicken isolate, indicating that the expression of bacterial genes is regulated by component(s) secreted upon co-cultivation of bacteria and CEICs. Conclusion We show that under...... in vitro culture condition C. jejuni strains of both human and chicken origins can invade avian host cells with a pro-inflammatory response and that the virulence-associated genes of C. jejuni may play a role in this process....

  15. Role of bacterial virulence proteins in Agrobacterium-mediated transformation of Aspergillus awamori

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Michielse, C.B.; Ram, A.F.J.; Hooykaas, P.J.J.; Hondel, C.A.M.J.J. van den

    2004-01-01

    The Agrobacterium-mediated transformation of Aspergillus awamori was optimized using defined co-cultivation conditions, which resulted in a reproducible and efficient transformation system. Optimal co-cultivation conditions were used to study the role of Agrobacterium tumefaciens virulence proteins

  16. Bacterial determinants of importance in the virulence of Gallibacterium anatis in poultry

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Persson, Gry; Bojesen, Anders Miki

    2015-01-01

    immunoglobulins, and hemagglutinins, which may promote biofilm formation are all factors likely linked to the virulence of G. anatis. A major advantage for the study of how G. anatis interact with its host is the ability to perform biologically relevant experimental infections where natural routes of exposure...

  17. A Clostridium difficile Cell Wall Glycopolymer Locus Influences Bacterial Shape, Polysaccharide Production and Virulence.

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    Michele Chu

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available Clostridium difficile is a diarrheagenic pathogen associated with significant mortality and morbidity. While its glucosylating toxins are primary virulence determinants, there is increasing appreciation of important roles for non-toxin factors in C. difficile pathogenesis. Cell wall glycopolymers (CWGs influence the virulence of various pathogens. Five C. difficile CWGs, including PSII, have been structurally characterized, but their biosynthesis and significance in C. difficile infection is unknown. We explored the contribution of a conserved CWG locus to C. difficile cell-surface integrity and virulence. Attempts at disrupting multiple genes in the locus, including one encoding a predicted CWG exporter mviN, were unsuccessful, suggesting essentiality of the respective gene products. However, antisense RNA-mediated mviN downregulation resulted in slight morphology defects, retarded growth, and decreased surface PSII deposition. Two other genes, lcpA and lcpB, with putative roles in CWG anchoring, could be disrupted by insertional inactivation. lcpA- and lcpB- mutants had distinct phenotypes, implying non-redundant roles for the respective proteins. The lcpB- mutant was defective in surface PSII deposition and shedding, and exhibited a remodeled cell surface characterized by elongated and helical morphology, aberrantly-localized cell septae, and an altered surface-anchored protein profile. Both lcpA- and lcpB- strains also displayed heightened virulence in a hamster model of C. difficile disease. We propose that gene products of the C. difficile CWG locus are essential, that they direct the production/assembly of key antigenic surface polysaccharides, and thereby have complex roles in virulence.

  18. The Effect of Microgravity on the Smallest Space Travelers: Bacterial Physiology and Virulence on Earth and in Microgravity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pyle, Barry; Vasques, Marilyn; Aquilina, Rudy (Technical Monitor)

    2002-01-01

    Since the first human flights outside of Earth's gravity, crew health and well-being have been major concerns. Exposure to microgravity during spaceflight is known to affect the human immune response, possibly making the crew members more vulnerable to infectious disease. In addition, biological experiments previously flown in space have shown that bacteria grow faster in microgravity than they do on Earth. The ability of certain antibiotics to control bacterial infections may also differ greatly in microgravity. It is therefore critical to understand how spaceflight and microgravity affect bacterial virulence, which is their ability to cause disease. By utilizing spaceflight hardware provided by the European Space Agency (ESA), Dr. Barry Pyle and his team at Montana State University, Bozeman, will be performing an experiment to study the effects of microgravity on the virulence of a common soil and water bacterium, Pseudomonas aeruginosa. Importantly, these bacteria have been detected in the water supplies of previous Space Shuttle flights. The experiment will examine the effects of microgravity exposure on bacterial growth and on the bacterium's ability to form a toxin called Exotoxin A. Another goal is to evaluate the effects of microgravity on the physiology of the bacteria by analyzing their ability to respire (produce energy), by studying the condition of the plasma membrane surrounding the cell, and by determining if specific enzymes remain active. Proteins produced by the bacteria will also be assayed to see if the normal functions of the bacteria are affected. In the context of human life support in spaceflight, the results of this experiment will offer guidance in providing the highest possible water quality for the Shuttle in order to limit the risk of infection to human occupants and to minimize water system and spacecraft deterioration.

  19. Selected lactic acid-producing bacterial isolates with the capacity to reduce Salmonella translocation and virulence gene expression in chickens.

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    Xiaojian Yang

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Probiotics have been used to control Salmonella colonization/infection in chickens. Yet the mechanisms of probiotic effects are not fully understood. This study has characterized our previously-selected lactic acid-producing bacterial (LAB isolates for controlling Salmonella infection in chickens, particularly the mechanism underlying the control. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: In vitro studies were conducted to characterize 14 LAB isolates for their tolerance to low pH (2.0 and high bile salt (0.3-1.5% and susceptibility to antibiotics. Three chicken infection trials were subsequently carried out to evaluate four of the isolates for reducing the burden of Salmonella enterica serovar Typhimurium in the broiler cecum. Chicks were gavaged with LAB cultures (10(6-7 CFU/chick or phosphate-buffered saline (PBS at 1 day of age followed by Salmonella challenge (10(4 CFU/chick next day. Samples of cecal digesta, spleen, and liver were examined for Salmonella counts on days 1, 3, or 4 post-challenge. Salmonella in the cecum from Trial 3 was also assessed for the expression of ten virulence genes located in its pathogenicity island-1 (SPI-1. These genes play a role in Salmonella intestinal invasion. Tested LAB isolates (individuals or mixed cultures were unable to lower Salmonella burden in the chicken cecum, but able to attenuate Salmonella infection in the spleen and liver. The LAB treatments also reduced almost all SPI-1 virulence gene expression (9 out of 10 in the chicken cecum, particularly at the low dose. In vitro treatment with the extracellular culture fluid from a LAB culture also down-regulated most SPI-1 virulence gene expression. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: The possible correlation between attenuation of Salmonella infection in the chicken spleen and liver and reduction of Salmonella SPI-1 virulence gene expression in the chicken cecum by LAB isolates is a new observation. Suppression of Salmonella virulence gene expression in

  20. The in planta transcriptome of Ralstonia solanacearum: conserved physiological and virulence strategies during bacterial wilt of tomato.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jacobs, Jonathan M; Babujee, Lavanya; Meng, Fanhong; Milling, Annett; Allen, Caitilyn

    2012-01-01

    Plant xylem fluid is considered a nutrient-poor environment, but the bacterial wilt pathogen Ralstonia solanacearum is well adapted to it, growing to 10(8) to 10(9) CFU/g tomato stem. To better understand how R. solanacearum succeeds in this habitat, we analyzed the transcriptomes of two phylogenetically distinct R. solanacearum strains that both wilt tomato, strains UW551 (phylotype II) and GMI1000 (phylotype I). We profiled bacterial gene expression at ~6 × 10(8) CFU/ml in culture or in plant xylem during early tomato bacterial wilt pathogenesis. Despite phylogenetic differences, these two strains expressed their 3,477 common orthologous genes in generally similar patterns, with about 12% of their transcriptomes significantly altered in planta versus in rich medium. Several primary metabolic pathways were highly expressed during pathogenesis. These pathways included sucrose uptake and catabolism, and components of these pathways were encoded by genes in the scrABY cluster. A UW551 scrA mutant was significantly reduced in virulence on resistant and susceptible tomato as well as on potato and the epidemiologically important weed host Solanum dulcamara. Functional scrA contributed to pathogen competitive fitness during colonization of tomato xylem, which contained ~300 µM sucrose. scrA expression was induced by sucrose, but to a much greater degree by growth in planta. Unexpectedly, 45% of the genes directly regulated by HrpB, the transcriptional activator of the type 3 secretion system (T3SS), were upregulated in planta at high cell densities. This result modifies a regulatory model based on bacterial behavior in culture, where this key virulence factor is repressed at high cell densities. The active transcription of these genes in wilting plants suggests that T3SS has a biological role throughout the disease cycle. IMPORTANCE Ralstonia solanacearum is a widespread plant pathogen that causes bacterial wilt disease. It inflicts serious crop losses on tropical

  1. Candidate Targets for New Anti-Virulence Drugs: Selected Cases of Bacterial Adhesion and Biofilm Formation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Klemm, Per; Hancock, Viktoria; Kvist, Malin

    2007-01-01

    is particularly problematic in medical contexts because biofilm-associated bacteria are particularly hard to eradicate. Several promising candidate drugs that target bacterial adhesion and biofilm formation are being developed. Some of these might be valuable weapons for fighting infectious diseases in the future...... formation are highly attractive targets for new drugs. Specific adhesion provides bacteria with target selection and prevents removal by hydrodynamic flow forces. Bacterial adhesion is of paramount importance for bacterial pathogenesis. Adhesion is also the first step in biofilm formation. Biofilm formation...

  2. Application of Chemical Genomics to Plant-Bacteria Communication: A High-Throughput System to Identify Novel Molecules Modulating the Induction of Bacterial Virulence Genes by Plant Signals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vandelle, Elodie; Puttilli, Maria Rita; Chini, Andrea; Devescovi, Giulia; Venturi, Vittorio; Polverari, Annalisa

    2017-01-01

    The life cycle of bacterial phytopathogens consists of a benign epiphytic phase, during which the bacteria grow in the soil or on the plant surface, and a virulent endophytic phase involving the penetration of host defenses and the colonization of plant tissues. Innovative strategies are urgently required to integrate copper treatments that control the epiphytic phase with complementary tools that control the virulent endophytic phase, thus reducing the quantity of chemicals applied to economically and ecologically acceptable levels. Such strategies include targeted treatments that weaken bacterial pathogens, particularly those inhibiting early infection steps rather than tackling established infections. This chapter describes a reporter gene-based chemical genomic high-throughput screen for the induction of bacterial virulence by plant molecules. Specifically, we describe a chemical genomic screening method to identify agonist and antagonist molecules for the induction of targeted bacterial virulence genes by plant extracts, focusing on the experimental controls required to avoid false positives and thus ensuring the results are reliable and reproducible.

  3. Mobilapplikationers potentiale til understøttelse af specialeprocessen

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nicholai Friis Pedersen

    2013-02-01

    Full Text Available Med afsæt i en case om udviklingen af en mobilapplikation til at understøtte specialestuderendes proces argumenterer artiklens forfattere for, at der eksisterer et stort og uudnyttet potentiale i forhold til at udvikle læringsunderstøttende apps til smartphones, ikke mindst når det gælder læreprocesser, der foregår uden for skemalagte undervisningsforløb på universitetsuddannelserne, såsom specialeforløbet. En gennemgang af den pædagogiske litteratur om specialeprocessen skaber grundlag for at vie begreberne personalisering og motivation særlig opmærksomhed i forhold til specialeapp-casen. Central to this article is the case of developing a mobile application to support the process of writing a Master’s thesis. The authors argue for the existence of a large and unexploited potential in respect to developing academic learning apps for smartphones, especially apps supporting learning processes that do not take place within scheduled university courses, such as the process of writing the Master’s thesis. A review of the pedagogical literature on this process serves as the basis for bestowing special attention to the concepts of customization and motivation in the case of the Master’s thesis app.

  4. Biofilm is a Major Virulence Determinant in Bacterial Colonization of Chronic Skin Ulcers Independently from the Multidrug Resistant Phenotype

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    Enea Gino Di Domenico

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available Bacterial biofilm is a major factor in delayed wound healing and high levels of biofilm production have been repeatedly described in multidrug resistant organisms (MDROs. Nevertheless, a quantitative correlation between biofilm production and the profile of antimicrobial drug resistance in delayed wound healing remains to be determined. Microbial identification, antibiotic susceptibility and biofilm production were assessed in 135 clinical isolates from 87 patients. Gram-negative bacteria were the most represented microorganisms (60.8% with MDROs accounting for 31.8% of the total isolates. Assessment of biofilm production revealed that 80% of the strains were able to form biofilm. A comparable level of biofilm production was found with both MDRO and not-MDRO with no significant differences between groups. All the methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA and 80% of Pseudomonas aeruginosa MDR strains were found as moderate/high biofilm producers. Conversely, less than 17% of Klebsiella pneumoniae extended-spectrum beta-lactamase (ESBL, Escherichia coli-ESBL and Acinetobacter baumannii were moderate/high biofilm producers. Notably, those strains classified as non-biofilm producers, were always associated with biofilm producer bacteria in polymicrobial colonization. This study shows that biofilm producers were present in all chronic skin ulcers, suggesting that biofilm represents a key virulence determinant in promoting bacterial persistence and chronicity of ulcerative lesions independently from the MDRO phenotype.

  5. Use of bacteriophage to target bacterial surface structures required for virulence: a systematic search for antibiotic alternatives.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Orndorff, Paul E

    2016-11-01

    Bacteriophages (phage) that infect pathogenic bacteria often attach to surface receptors that are coincidentally required for virulence. Receptor loss or modification through mutation renders mutants both attenuated and phage resistant. Such attenuated mutants frequently have no apparent laboratory growth defects, but in the host, they fail to exhibit properties needed to produce disease such as mucosal colonization or survival within professional phagocytic cells. The connection between attenuation and phage resistance has been exploited in experimental demonstrations of phage therapy. In such experiments, phage resistant mutants that arise naturally during therapy are inconsequential because of their attenuated status. A more contemporary approach to exploiting this connection involves identifying small effector molecules, identified in high-throughput screens, that inhibit one or more of the steps needed to produce a functioning phage receptor. Since such biosynthetic steps are unique to bacteria, inhibitors can be utilized therapeutically, in lieu of antibiotics. Also, since the inhibitor is specific to a particular bacterium or group of bacteria, no off-target resistance is generated in the host's commensal bacterial population. This brief review covers examples of how mutations that confer phage resistance produce attenuation, and how this coincidental relationship can be exploited in the search for the next generation of therapeutic agents for bacterial diseases.

  6. Card9 mediates susceptibility to intestinal pathogens through microbiota modulation and control of bacterial virulence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lamas, Bruno; Michel, Marie-Laure; Waldschmitt, Nadine; Pham, Hang-Phuong; Zacharioudaki, Vassiliki; Dupraz, Louise; Delacre, Myriam; Natividad, Jane M; Costa, Gregory Da; Planchais, Julien; Sovran, Bruno; Bridonneau, Chantal; Six, Adrien; Langella, Philippe; Richard, Mathias L; Chamaillard, Mathias; Sokol, Harry

    2017-08-08

    In association with innate and adaptive immunity, the microbiota controls the colonisation resistance against intestinal pathogens. Caspase recruitment domain 9 ( CARD9 ), a key innate immunity gene, is required to shape a normal gut microbiota. Card9 -/- mice are more susceptible to the enteric mouse pathogen Citrobacter rodentium that mimics human infections with enteropathogenic and enterohaemorrhagic Escherichia coli . Here, we examined how CARD9 controls C. rodentium infection susceptibility through microbiota-dependent and microbiota-independent mechanisms. C. rodentium infection was assessed in conventional and germ-free (GF) wild-type (WT) and Card9 -/- mice. To explore the impact of Card9 -/- microbiota in infection susceptibility, GF WT mice were colonised with WT (WT→GF) or Card9 -/- ( Card9 -/- →GF) microbiota before C. rodentium infection. Microbiota composition was determined by 16S rDNA gene sequencing. Inflammation severity was determined by histology score and lipocalin level. Microbiota-host immune system interactions were assessed by quantitative PCR analysis. CARD9 controls pathogen virulence in a microbiota-independent manner by supporting a specific humoral response. Higher susceptibility to C. rodentium -induced colitis was observed in Card9 -/- →GF mice. The microbiota of Card9 -/- mice failed to outcompete the monosaccharide-consuming C. rodentium , worsening the infection severity. A polysaccharide-enriched diet counteracted the ecological advantage of C. rodentium and the defective pathogen-specific antibody response in Card9 -/- mice. CARD9 modulates the susceptibility to intestinal infection by controlling the pathogen virulence in a microbiota-dependent and microbiota-independent manner. Genetic susceptibility to intestinal pathogens can be overridden by diet intervention that restores humoural immunity and a competing microbiota. © Article author(s) (or their employer(s) unless otherwise stated in the text of the article) 2017

  7. Structural and Molecular Mechanism of CdpR Involved in Quorum-Sensing and Bacterial Virulence in Pseudomonas aeruginosa.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jingru Zhao

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available Although quorum-sensing (QS systems are important regulators of virulence gene expression in the opportunistic human pathogen Pseudomonas aeruginosa, their detailed regulatory mechanisms have not been fully characterized. Here, we show that deletion of PA2588 resulted in increased production of pyocyanin and biofilm, as well as enhanced pathogenicity in a mouse model. To gain insights into the function of PA2588, we performed a ChIP-seq assay and identified 28 targets of PA2588, including the intergenic region between PA2588 and pqsH, which encodes the key synthase of Pseudomonas quinolone signal (PQS. Though the C-terminal domain was similar to DNA-binding regions of other AraC family members, structural studies revealed that PA2588 has a novel fold at the N-terminal region (NTR, and its C-terminal HTH (helix-turn-helix domain is also unique in DNA recognition. We also demonstrated that the adaptor protein ClpS, an essential regulator of ATP-dependent protease ClpAP, directly interacted with PA2588 before delivering CdpR to ClpAP for degradation. We named PA2588 as CdpR (ClpAP-degradation and pathogenicity Regulator. Moreover, deletion of clpP or clpS/clpA promotes bacterial survival in a mouse model of acute pneumonia infection. Taken together, this study uncovered that CdpR is an important QS regulator, which can interact with the ClpAS-P system to regulate the expression of virulence factors and pathogenicity.

  8. Drivers of bacterial genomes plasticity and roles they play in pathogen virulence, persistence and drug resistance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Patel, Seema

    2016-11-01

    Despite the advent of next-generation sequencing (NGS) technologies, sophisticated data analysis and drug development efforts, bacterial drug resistance persists and is escalating in magnitude. To better control the pathogens, a thorough understanding of their genomic architecture and dynamics is vital. Bacterial genome is extremely complex, a mosaic of numerous co-operating and antagonizing components, altruistic and self-interested entities, behavior of which are predictable and conserved to some extent, yet largely dictated by an array of variables. In this regard, mobile genetic elements (MGE), DNA repair systems, post-segregation killing systems, toxin-antitoxin (TA) systems, restriction-modification (RM) systems etc. are dominant agents and horizontal gene transfer (HGT), gene redundancy, epigenetics, phase and antigenic variation etc. processes shape the genome. By illegitimate recombinations, deletions, insertions, duplications, amplifications, inversions, conversions, translocations, modification of intergenic regions and other alterations, bacterial genome is modified to tackle stressors like drugs, and host immune effectors. Over the years, thousands of studies have investigated this aspect and mammoth amount of insights have been accumulated. This review strives to distillate the existing information, formulate hypotheses and to suggest directions, that might contribute towards improved mitigation of the vicious pathogens. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  9. CNF1-like deamidase domains: common Lego bricks among cancer-promoting immunomodulatory bacterial virulence factors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ho, Mengfei; Mettouchi, Amel; Wilson, Brenda A; Lemichez, Emmanuel

    2018-05-03

    Alterations of the cellular proteome over time due to spontaneous or toxin-mediated enzymatic deamidation of glutamine (Gln) and asparagine (Asn) residues contribute to bacterial infection and might represent a source of aging-related diseases. Here, we put into perspective what is known about the mode of action of the CNF1 toxin from pathogenic E. coli, a paradigm of bacterial deamidases that activate Rho GTPases, to illustrate the importance of determining whether exposure to these factors are risk factors in the etiology age-related diseases, such as cancer. In particular, through in silico analysis of the distribution of the CNF1-like deamidase active site Gly-Cys-(Xaa)n-His sequence motif in bacterial genomes, we unveil the wide distribution of the super-family of CNF-like toxins and CNF-like deamidase domains among members of the enterobacteriacae and in association with a large variety of toxin delivery systems. We extent our discussion with recent findings concerning cellular systems that control activated Rac1 GTPase stability and provide protection against cancer. These findings point to the urgency for developing holistic approaches toward personalized medicine that include monitoring for asymptomatic carriage of pathogenic toxin-producing bacteria and that ultimately might lead to improved public health and increased lifespans.

  10. The effect of E coli virulence on bacterial translocation and systemic sepsis in the neonatal rabbit model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jackson, R J; Smith, S D; Wadowsky, R M; DePudyt, L; Rowe, M I

    1991-04-01

    In the surgical neonate, three factors that promote bacterial translocation and systemic infection are: (1) intestinal bacterial colonization and overgrowth; (2) compromised host defenses; and (3) disruption of the mucosal epithelial barrier. The newborn rabbit provides an excellent model to study these factors. Like the human, there is early closure of the gut mucosa to macromolecules, and nutrition can be maintained by breast or formula feeding. This study examines translocation and systemic sepsis after colonization with virulent K1 and avirulent K100 strains of Escherichia coli. New Zealand white rabbit pups (2 to 5 days old) were studied. The gastrointestinal tracts of 12 were colonized with K1 E coli; 14 were colonized with K100 E coli; 12 control animals were not inoculated. Mesenteric lymph node (MLN), liver, spleen, and colon homogenate were cultured 72 hours postinoculation. No bacteria were isolated from the colons of all but one control animal. Translocation or systemic sepsis did not occur. Translocation to the MLN was significantly increased (P less than .03) in K1 (50%) and K100 (36%) groups compared with controls (0%). Translocation to liver and spleen (systemic sepsis) was significantly increased (P less than .03) in K1 animals (67%) compared with K100 (0%) or controls (0%). Colonization by both strains of E coli led to translocation to the MLN, but only K1 E coli caused systemic sepsis. This suggests that although colonization by E coli in the newborn leads to translocation to the MLN, progression to systemic sepsis is the result of characteristics of the bacteria and/or neonatal host responses.

  11. Pseudomonas fluorescens filamentous hemagglutinin, an iron-regulated protein, is an important virulence factor that modulates bacterial pathogenicity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yuan-yuan Sun

    2016-08-01

    Full Text Available Pseudomonas fluorescens is a common bacterial pathogen to a wide range of aquaculture animals including various species of fish. In this study, we employed proteomic analysis and identified filamentous hemagglutinin (FHA as an iron-responsive protein secreted by TSS, a pathogenic P. fluorescens isolate. In vitro study showed that compared to the wild type, the fha mutant TSSfha (i exhibited a largely similar vegetative growth profile but significantly retarded in the ability of biofilm growth and producing extracellular matrix, (ii displayed no apparent flagella and motility, (iii was defective in the attachment to host cells and unable to form self-aggregation, (iv displayed markedly reduced capacity of hemagglutination and surviving in host serum. In vivo infection analysis revealed that TSSfha was significantly attenuated in the ability of dissemination in fish tissues and inducing host mortality, and that antibody blocking of the natural FHA produced by the wild type TSS impaired the infectivity of the pathogen. Furthermore, when introduced into turbot as a subunit vaccine, recombinant FHA elicited a significant protection against lethal TSS challenge. Taken together, these results indicate for the first time that P. fluorescens FHA is a key virulence factor essential to multiple biological processes associated with pathogenicity.

  12. Development of a multicomponent Staphylococcus aureus vaccine designed to counter multiple bacterial virulence factors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Anderson, Annaliesa S.; Miller, Alita A.; Donald, Robert G.K.; Scully, Ingrid L.; Nanra, Jasdeep S.; Cooper, David; Jansen, Kathrin U.

    2012-01-01

    Staphylococcus aureus is a major cause of healthcare-associated infections and is responsible for a substantial burden of disease in hospitalized patients. Despite increasingly rigorous infection control guidelines, the prevalence and corresponding negative impact of S. aureus infections remain considerable. Difficulties in controlling S. aureus infections as well as the associated treatment costs are exacerbated by increasing rates of resistance to available antibiotics. Despite ongoing efforts over the past 20 years, no licensed S. aureus vaccine is currently available. However, learnings from past clinical failures of vaccine candidates and a better understanding of the immunopathology of S. aureus colonization and infection have aided in the design of new vaccine candidates based on multiple important bacterial pathogenesis mechanisms. This review outlines important considerations in designing a vaccine for the prevention of S. aureus disease in healthcare settings. PMID:22922765

  13. A new formulation of the understeer coefficient to relate yaw torque and vehicle handling

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bucchi, F.; Frendo, F.

    2016-06-01

    The handling behaviour of vehicles is an important property for its relation to performance and safety. In 1970s, Pacejka did the groundwork for an objective analysis introducing the handling diagram and the understeer coefficient. In more recent years, the understeer concept is still mentioned but the handling is actively managed by direct yaw control (DYC). In this paper an accurate analysis of the vehicle handling is carried out, considering also the effect of drive forces. This analysis brings to a new formulation of the understeer coefficient, which is almost equivalent to the classical one, but it can be obtained by quasi-steady-state manoeuvres. In addition, it relates the vehicle yaw torque to the understeer coefficient, filling up the gap between the classical handling approach and DYC. A multibody model of a Formula SAE car is then used to perform quasi-steady-state simulations in order to verify the effectiveness of the new formulation. Some vehicle set-ups and wheel drive arrangements are simulated and the results are discussed. In particular, the handling behaviours of the rear wheel drive (RWD) and the front wheel drive (FWD) architectures are compared, finding an apparently surprising result: for the analysed vehicle the FWD is less understeering than for RWD. The relation between the yaw torque and the understeer coefficient allows to understand this behaviour and opens-up the possibility for different yaw control strategies.

  14. Anaerobes and Bacterial Vaginosis in Pregnancy: Virulence Factors Contributing to Vaginal Colonisation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Charlene W. J. Africa

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available The aetiology and pathogenesis of bacterial vaginosis (BV is unclear but it appears to be associated with factors that disrupt the normal acidity of the vagina thus altering the equilibrium between the normal vaginal microbiota. BV has serious implications for female morbidity, including reports of pelvic inflammatory disease, adverse pregnancy outcomes, increased susceptibility to sexually transmitted infections and infertility. This paper reviewed new available information regarding possible factors contributing to the establishment of the BV vaginal biofilm, examined the proposed role of anaerobic microbial species recently detected by new culture-independent methods and discusses developments related to the effects of BV on human pregnancy. The literature search included Pubmed (NLM, LISTA (EBSCO, and Web of Science. Because of the complexity and diversity of population groups, diagnosis and methodology used, no meta-analysis was performed. Several anaerobic microbial species previously missed in the laboratory diagnosis of BV have been revealed while taking cognisance of newly proposed theories of infection, thereby improving our understanding and knowledge of the complex aetiology and pathogenesis of BV and its perceived role in adverse pregnancy outcomes.

  15. Rice bacterial blight pathogen Xanthomonas oryzae pv. oryzae produces multiple DSF-family signals in regulation of virulence factor production

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cha Jae-Soon

    2010-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Xanthomonas oryzae pv. oryzae (Xoo is the causal agent of rice bacterial blight disease. Xoo produces a range of virulence factors, including EPS, extracellular enzyme, iron-chelating siderophores, and type III-secretion dependent effectors, which are collectively essential for virulence. Genetic and genomics evidence suggest that Xoo might use the diffusible signal factor (DSF type quorum sensing (QS system to regulate the virulence factor production. However, little is known about the chemical structure of the DSF-like signal(s produced by Xoo and the factors influencing the signal production. Results Xoo genome harbours an rpf cluster comprising rpfB, rpfF, rpfC and rpfG. The proteins encoded by these genes are highly homologous to their counterparts in X. campestris pv. campestris (Xcc, suggesting that Xcc and Xoo might use similar mechanisms for DSF biosynthesis and autoregulation. Consistent with in silico analysis, the rpfF mutant was DSF-deficient and the rpfC mutant produced about 25 times higher DSF-like activity than the wild type Xoo strain KACC10331. From the supernatants of rpfC mutant, we purified three compounds showing strong DSF-like activity. Mass spectrometry and NMR analysis revealed that two of them were the previously characterized DSF and BDSF; the third one was a novel unsaturated fatty acid with 2 double bonds and was designated as CDSF in this study. Further analysis showed that all the three DSF-family signals were synthesized via the enzyme RpfF encoded by Xoo2868. DSF and BDSF at a final concentration of 3 μM to the rpfF mutant could fully restore its extracellular xylanase activity and EPS production to the wild type level, but CDSF was less active than DSF and BDSF in induction of EPS and xylanase. DSF and CDSF shared a similar cell density-dependent production time course with the maximum production being detected at 42 h after inoculation, whereas the maximum production of BDSF was observed

  16. Streptococcus mutans autolysin AtlA is a fibronectin-binding protein and contributes to bacterial survival in the bloodstream and virulence for infective endocarditis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jung, Chiau-Jing; Zheng, Quan-Hau; Shieh, Ya-Hsiung; Lin, Chi-Shuan; Chia, Jean-San

    2009-11-01

    Streptococcus mutans, a commensal of the human oral cavity, can survive in the bloodstream and cause infective endocarditis (IE). However, the virulence factors associated with this manifestation of disease are not known. Here, we demonstrate that AtlA, an autolysin of S. mutans is a newly identified fibronectin (Fn) binding protein and contributes to bacterial resistance to phagocytosis and survival in the bloodstream. Interestingly, prior exposure to plasma at low concentrations was sufficient to enhance bacterial survival in the circulation. Calcium ions at physiological plasma concentrations induced maturation of AtlA from the 104-90 kDa isoform resulting in increased Fn binding and resistance to phagocytosis. An isogenic mutant strain defective in AtlA expression exhibited reduced survival and virulence when tested in a rat model of IE compared with the wild-type and complemented strains. The data presented suggest that plasma components utilized by S. mutans enhanced survival in the circulation and AtlA is a virulence factor associated with infective endocarditis.

  17. Bacterial proteases and virulence

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Frees, Dorte; Brøndsted, Lone; Ingmer, Hanne

    2013-01-01

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

  18. A Nonluminescent and Highly Virulent Vibrio harveyi Strain Is Associated with “Bacterial White Tail Disease” of Litopenaeus vannamei Shrimp

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhou, Junfang; Fang, Wenhong; Yang, Xianle; Zhou, Shuai; Hu, Linlin; Li, Xincang; Qi, Xinyong; Su, Hang; Xie, Layue

    2012-01-01

    Recurrent outbreaks of a disease in pond-cultured juvenile and subadult Litopenaeus vannamei shrimp in several districts in China remain an important problem in recent years. The disease was characterized by “white tail” and generally accompanied by mass mortalities. Based on data from the microscopical analyses, PCR detection and 16S rRNA sequencing, a new Vibrio harveyi strain (designated as strain HLB0905) was identified as the etiologic pathogen. The bacterial isolation and challenge tests demonstrated that the HLB0905 strain was nonluminescent but highly virulent. It could cause mass mortality in affected shrimp during a short time period with a low dose of infection. Meanwhile, the histopathological and electron microscopical analysis both showed that the HLB0905 strain could cause severe fiber cell damages and striated muscle necrosis by accumulating in the tail muscle of L. vannamei shrimp, which led the affected shrimp to exhibit white or opaque lesions in the tail. The typical sign was closely similar to that caused by infectious myonecrosis (IMN), white tail disease (WTD) or penaeid white tail disease (PWTD). To differentiate from such diseases as with a sign of “white tail” but of non-bacterial origin, the present disease was named as “bacterial white tail disease (BWTD)”. Present study revealed that, just like IMN and WTD, BWTD could also cause mass mortalities in pond-cultured shrimp. These results suggested that some bacterial strains are changing themselves from secondary to primary pathogens by enhancing their virulence in current shrimp aquaculture system. PMID:22383954

  19. Quorum sensing in Aeromonas salmonicida subsp. achromogenes and the effect of the autoinducer synthase AsaI on bacterial virulence

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Schwenteit, Johanna; Gram, Lone; Nielsen, Kristian Fog

    2011-01-01

    The Gram-negative fish pathogenic bacterium Aeromonas salmonicida possesses the LuxIRtype quorum sensing (QS) system, termed AsaIR. In this study the role of QS in A. salmonicida subsp. achromogenes virulence and pigment production was investigated. Five wild-type Asa strains induced the N......Ideficient mutant was 20-fold higher than that of the isogenic wt strain and the mean day to death of the mutant was significantly prolonged. Furthermore, the expression of two virulence factors (a toxic protease, AsaP1, and a cytotoxic factor) and a brown pigment were reduced in the mutant. AsaP1 productionwas...... virulence in fish and QS has not previously been associated with A. salmonicida infections in fish. Furthermore, AsaP1 production has not previously been shown to be QS regulated. The simplicity of the A. salmonicida subsp. achromogenes LuxIR-type QS system and the observation that synthetic QSI can inhibit...

  20. The TLR2 Antagonist Staphylococcal Superantigen-Like Protein 3 Acts as a Virulence Factor to Promote Bacterial Pathogenicity in vivo.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Koymans, Kirsten J; Goldmann, Oliver; Karlsson, Christofer A Q; Sital, Wiedjai; Thänert, Robert; Bisschop, Adinda; Vrieling, Manouk; Malmström, Johan; van Kessel, Kok P M; de Haas, Carla J C; van Strijp, Jos A G; Medina, Eva

    2017-01-01

    Toll-like receptor (TLR) signaling is important in the initiation of immune responses and subsequent instigation of adaptive immunity. TLR2 recognizes bacterial lipoproteins and plays a central role in the host defense against bacterial infections, including those caused by Staphylococcus aureus. Many studies have demonstrated the importance of TLR2 in murine S. aureus infection. S. aureus evades TLR2 activation by secreting two proteins, staphylococcal superantigen-like protein 3 (SSL3) and 4 (SSL4). In this study, we demonstrate that antibodies against SSL3 and SSL4 are found in healthy individuals, indicating that humans are exposed to these proteins during S. aureus colonization or infection. To investigate the TLR2-antagonistic properties of SSL3 and SSL4, we compared the infection with wild-type and SSL3/4 knockout S. aureus strains in an intravenous murine infection model. Direct evaluation of the contribution of SSL3/4 to infection pathogenesis was hindered by the fact that the SSLs were not expressed in the murine system. To circumvent this limitation, an SSL3-overproducing strain (pLukM-SSL3) was generated, resulting in constitutive expression of SSL3. pLukM-SSL3 exhibited increased virulence compared to the parental strain in a murine model that was found to be TLR2 dependent. Altogether, these data indicate that SSL3 contributes to S. aureus virulence in vivo. © 2017 S. Karger AG, Basel.

  1. Phage-mediated dispersal of biofilm and distribution of bacterial virulence genes is induced by quorum sensing.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Friederike S Rossmann

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available The microbiome and the phage meta-genome within the human gut are influenced by antibiotic treatments. Identifying a novel mechanism, here we demonstrate that bacteria use the universal communication molecule AI-2 to induce virulence genes and transfer them via phage release. High concentrations (i.e. 100 μM of AI-2 promote dispersal of bacteria from already established biofilms, and is associated with release of phages capable of infecting other bacteria. Enterococcus faecalis V583ΔABC harbours 7 prophages in its genome, and a mutant deficient in one of these prophages (i.e. prophage 5 showed a greatly reduced dispersal of biofilm. Infection of a probiotic E. faecalis strain without lytic prophages with prophage 5 resulted in increased biofilm formation and also in biofilm dispersal upon induction with AI-2. Infection of the probiotic E. faecalis strain with phage-containing supernatants released through AI-2 from E. faecalis V583ΔABC resulted in a strong increase in pathogenicity of this strain. The polylysogenic probiotic strain was also more virulent in a mouse sepsis model and a rat endocarditis model. Both AI-2 and ciprofloxacin lead to phage release, indicating that conditions in the gastrointestinal tract of hospitalized patients treated with antibiotics might lead to distribution of virulence genes to apathogenic enterococci and possibly also to other commensals or even to beneficial probiotic strains.

  2. Acquisition of C1 inhibitor by Bordetella pertussis virulence associated gene 8 results in C2 and C4 consumption away from the bacterial surface.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hovingh, Elise S; van den Broek, Bryan; Kuipers, Betsy; Pinelli, Elena; Rooijakkers, Suzan H M; Jongerius, Ilse

    2017-07-01

    Whooping cough, or pertussis, is a contagious disease of the respiratory tract that is re-emerging worldwide despite high vaccination coverage. The causative agent of this disease is the Gram-negative Bordetella pertussis. Knowledge on complement evasion strategies of this pathogen is limited. However, this is of great importance for future vaccine development as it has become apparent that a novel pertussis vaccine is needed. Here, we unravel the effect of Virulence associated gene 8 (Vag8) of B. pertussis on the human complement system at the molecular level. We show that both recombinant and endogenously secreted Vag8 inhibit complement deposition on the bacterial surface at the level of C4b. We reveal that Vag8 binding to human C1-inhibitor (C1-inh) interferes with the binding of C1-inh to C1s, C1r and MASP-2, resulting in the release of active proteases that subsequently cleave C2 and C4 away from the bacterial surface. We demonstrate that the depletion of these complement components in the bacterial surrounding and subsequent decreased deposition on B. pertussis leads to less complement-mediated bacterial killing. Vag8 is the first protein described that specifically prevents C1s, C1r and MASP-2 binding to C1-inh and thereby mediates complement consumption away from the bacterial surface. Unravelling the mechanism of this unique complement evasion strategy of B. pertussis is one of the first steps towards understanding the interactions between the first line of defense complement and B. pertussis.

  3. Acquisition of C1 inhibitor by Bordetella pertussis virulence associated gene 8 results in C2 and C4 consumption away from the bacterial surface

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hovingh, Elise S.; Kuipers, Betsy; Pinelli, Elena; Rooijakkers, Suzan H. M.

    2017-01-01

    Whooping cough, or pertussis, is a contagious disease of the respiratory tract that is re-emerging worldwide despite high vaccination coverage. The causative agent of this disease is the Gram-negative Bordetella pertussis. Knowledge on complement evasion strategies of this pathogen is limited. However, this is of great importance for future vaccine development as it has become apparent that a novel pertussis vaccine is needed. Here, we unravel the effect of Virulence associated gene 8 (Vag8) of B. pertussis on the human complement system at the molecular level. We show that both recombinant and endogenously secreted Vag8 inhibit complement deposition on the bacterial surface at the level of C4b. We reveal that Vag8 binding to human C1-inhibitor (C1-inh) interferes with the binding of C1-inh to C1s, C1r and MASP-2, resulting in the release of active proteases that subsequently cleave C2 and C4 away from the bacterial surface. We demonstrate that the depletion of these complement components in the bacterial surrounding and subsequent decreased deposition on B. pertussis leads to less complement-mediated bacterial killing. Vag8 is the first protein described that specifically prevents C1s, C1r and MASP-2 binding to C1-inh and thereby mediates complement consumption away from the bacterial surface. Unravelling the mechanism of this unique complement evasion strategy of B. pertussis is one of the first steps towards understanding the interactions between the first line of defense complement and B. pertussis. PMID:28742139

  4. Expression of bacterial virulence factors and cytokines during in vitro macrophage infection by enteroinvasive Escherichia coli and Shigella flexneri: a comparative study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Silvia Y Bando

    2010-09-01

    Full Text Available Enteroinvasive Escherichia coli (EIEC and Shigellaspp cause bacillary dysentery in humans by invading and multiplying within epithelial cells of the colonic mucosa. Although EIEC and Shigellashare many genetic and biochemical similarities, the illness caused by Shigellais more severe. Thus, genomic and structure-function molecular studies on the biological interactions of these invasive enterobacteria with eukaryotic cells have focused on Shigella rather than EIEC. Here we comparatively studied the interactions of EIEC and of Shigella flexneriwith cultured J774 macrophage-like cells. We evaluated several phenotypes: (i bacterial escape from macrophages after phagocytosis, (ii macrophage death induced by EIEC and S. flexneri, (iii macrophage cytokine expression in response to infection and (iv expression of plasmidial (pINV virulence genes. The results showed thatS. flexneri caused macrophage killing earlier and more intensely than EIEC. Both pathogens induced significant macrophage production of TNF, IL-1 and IL-10 after 7 h of infection. Transcription levels of the gene invasion plasmid antigen-C were lower in EIEC than in S. flexneri throughout the course of the infection; this could explain the diminished virulence of EIEC compared to S. flexneri.

  5. The whole is greater than the sum of its parts: dental plaque bacterial interactions can affect the virulence properties of cariogenic Streptococcus mutans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kuramitsu, Howard K; Wang, Bing-Yan

    2011-06-01

    It has been well established that dental caries results from the accumulation of dental plaque on tooth surfaces. Several decades of in vitro and as well as clinical studies have identified Streptococcus mutans as an important etiological agent in carious lesion formation. In addition, a variety of approaches have suggested that interactions between the bacterial components of biofilms can influence the properties of such polymicrobial structures. Therefore, it is likely that the mere presence of S. mutans in dental plaque does not alone account for the cariogenic potential of such biofilms. Recent studies have indicated that several bacteria commonly found in dental plaque can influence either the viability and/or virulence properties of S. mutans. This review will summarize some of the more recent findings in this regard as well as their implications for the development of novel anti-caries strategies.

  6. Identification of two proteins that interact with the Erp virulence factor from Mycobacterium tuberculosis by using the bacterial two-hybrid system

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cataldi Angel A

    2009-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The exported repetitive protein (erp gene encodes a secreted 36-kDa protein with a central domain containing several proline-glycine-leucine-threonine-serine (PGLTS repeats. It has been demonstrated that erp is a virulence-associated factor since the disruption of this gene impairs the growth of Mycobacterium bovis and Mycobacterium tuberculosis in mice. Results In order to elucidate the function of Erp we searched for Erp-binding proteins from M. tuberculosis by using a bacterial two-hybrid system. Our results indicate that Erp interacts specifically with two putative membrane proteins, Rv1417 and Rv2617c. Further analysis revealed that the latter two interact with each other, indicating that Rv1417, Rv2617c and Erp are connected through multiple interactions. While Rv1417 is disseminated in several Actinomycetales genera, orthologues of Rv2617c are exclusively present in members of the M. tuberculosis complex (MTC. The central and amino-terminal regions of Erp were determined to be involved in the interaction with Rv1417 and Rv2627c. Erp forms from Mycobacterium smegmatis and Mycobacterium leprae were not able to interact with Rv2617c in two-hybrid assays. Immunolocalization experiments showed that Rv1417 and Rv2617c are found on the cell membrane and Erp on the bacterial cell wall. Finally, comparative genomics and expression studies revealed a possible role of Rv1417 in riboflavin metabolism. Conclusion We identified interactive partners of Erp, an M. tuberculosis protein involved in virulence, which will be the focus of future investigation to decipher the function of the Erp family protein.

  7. The DinJ/RelE Toxin-Antitoxin System Suppresses Bacterial Proliferation and Virulence of Xylella fastidiosa in Grapevine.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burbank, Lindsey P; Stenger, Drake C

    2017-04-01

    Xylella fastidiosa, the causal agent of Pierce's disease of grapes, is a slow-growing, xylem-limited, bacterial pathogen. Disease progression is characterized by systemic spread of the bacterium through xylem vessel networks, causing leaf-scorching symptoms, senescence, and vine decline. It appears to be advantageous to this pathogen to avoid excessive blockage of xylem vessels, because living bacterial cells are generally found in plant tissue with low bacterial cell density and minimal scorching symptoms. The DinJ/RelE toxin-antitoxin system is characterized here for a role in controlling bacterial proliferation and population size during plant colonization. The DinJ/RelE locus is transcribed from two separate promoters, allowing for coexpression of antitoxin DinJ with endoribonuclease toxin RelE, in addition to independent expression of RelE. The ratio of antitoxin/toxin expressed is dependent on bacterial growth conditions, with lower amounts of antitoxin present under conditions designed to mimic grapevine xylem sap. A knockout mutant of DinJ/RelE exhibits a hypervirulent phenotype, with higher bacterial populations and increased symptom development and plant decline. It is likely that DinJ/RelE acts to prevent excessive population growth, contributing to the ability of the pathogen to spread systemically without completely blocking the xylem vessels and increasing probability of acquisition by the insect vector.

  8. Inactivation of the Ecs ABC Transporter of Staphylococcus aureus Attenuates Virulence by Altering Composition and Function of Bacterial Wall

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Jonsson, Ing-Marie; Juuti, Jarmo T.; Francois, Patrice; AlMajidi, Rana; Pietiainen, Milla; Girard, Myriam; Lindholm, Catharina; Saller, Manfred J.; Driessen, Arnold J. M.; Kuusela, Pentti; Bokarewa, Maria; Schrenzel, Jacques; Kontinen, Vesa P.

    2010-01-01

    Background: Ecs is an ATP-binding cassette (ABC) transporter present in aerobic and facultative anaerobic Gram-positive Firmicutes. Inactivation of Bacillus subtilis Ecs causes pleiotropic changes in the bacterial phenotype including inhibition of intramembrane proteolysis. The molecule(s)

  9. Ionome changes in Xylella fastidiosa-infected Nicotiana tabacum correlate with virulence and discriminate between subspecies of bacterial isolates.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oliver, J E; Sefick, S A; Parker, J K; Arnold, T; Cobine, P A; De La Fuente, L

    2014-10-01

    Characterization of ionomes has been used to uncover the basis of nutrient utilization and environmental adaptation of plants. Here, ionomic profiles were used to understand the phenotypic response of a plant to infection by genetically diverse isolates of Xylella fastidiosa, a gram-negative, xylem-limited bacterial plant pathogen. In this study, X. fastidiosa isolates were used to infect a common model host (Nicotiana tabacum 'SR1'), and leaf and sap concentrations of eleven elements together with plant colonization and symptoms were assessed. Multivariate statistical analysis revealed that changes in the ionome were significantly correlated with symptom severity and bacterial populations in host petioles. Moreover, plant ionome modification by infection could be used to differentiate the X. fastidiosa subspecies with which the plant was infected. This report establishes host ionome modification as a phenotypic response to infection.

  10. The co-evolved Helicobacter pylori and gastric cancer: trinity of bacterial virulence, host susceptibility and lifestyle

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Devi S Manjulata

    2007-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Helicobacter pylori is an important yet unproven etiological agent of gastric cancer. H. pylori infection is more prevalent in developing Asian countries like India and it is usually acquired at an early age. It has been two decades since Marshall and Warren (1984 first described curved bacilli in the stomach of ulcer and gastritis patients. This discovery has won them the Nobel Prize recently, but the debate whether H. pylori is a pathogen or a commensal organism is still hot. Associations with disease-specific factors remain illusive years after the genome sequences were made available. Cytotoxin-associated antigen A (CagA and the so-called plasticity region cluster genes are implicated in pathogenesis of the carcinoma of stomach. Another virulence factor VacA whose role is still debatable, has recently been projected in pathology of gastric cancer. Studies of the evolution through genetic variation in H. pylori populations have provided a window into the history of human population migrations and a possible co-evolution of this pathogen with its human host. Possible symbiotic relationships were seriously debated since the discovery of this pathogen. The debate has been further intensified as some studies proposed H. pylori infection to be beneficial in some humans. In this commentary, we attempt to briefly discuss about H. pylori as a human pathogen, and some of the important issues linked to its pathophysiology in different hosts. 'We dance around in a ring and suppose, the secret sits in the middle and knows' – Robert Frost

  11. Transcriptional start site turnover in the evolution of bacterial paralogous genes - the pelE-pelD virulence genes in Dickeya.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Duprey, Alexandre; Nasser, William; Léonard, Simon; Brochier-Armanet, Céline; Reverchon, Sylvie

    2016-11-01

    After a gene duplication event, the resulting paralogous genes frequently acquire distinct expression profiles, roles, and/or functions but the underlying mechanisms are poorly understood. While transcription start site (TSS) turnover, i.e., the repositioning of the TSS during evolution, is widespread in eukaryotes, it is less documented in bacteria. Using pelD and pelE, two closely related paralogous genes encoding key virulence factors in Dickeya, a gamma proteobacterial genus of phytopathogens, we show that pelE has been selected as an initiator of bacterial aggression, while pelD acts at a later stage, thanks to modifications in the transcriptional regulation of these two genes. This expression change is linked to a few mutations that caused a shift in the position of the pelETSS and the rapid divergence in the regulation of these genes after their duplication. Genomic surveys detected additional examples of putative turnovers in other bacteria. This first report of TSS shifting in bacteria suggests that this mechanism could play a major role in paralogous genes fixation in prokaryotes. © 2016 Federation of European Biochemical Societies.

  12. Insight into bacterial virulence mechanisms against host immune response via the Yersinia pestis-human protein-protein interaction network.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Huiying; Ke, Yuehua; Wang, Jian; Tan, Yafang; Myeni, Sebenzile K; Li, Dong; Shi, Qinghai; Yan, Yanfeng; Chen, Hui; Guo, Zhaobiao; Yuan, Yanzhi; Yang, Xiaoming; Yang, Ruifu; Du, Zongmin

    2011-11-01

    A Yersinia pestis-human protein interaction network is reported here to improve our understanding of its pathogenesis. Up to 204 interactions between 66 Y. pestis bait proteins and 109 human proteins were identified by yeast two-hybrid assay and then combined with 23 previously published interactions to construct a protein-protein interaction network. Topological analysis of the interaction network revealed that human proteins targeted by Y. pestis were significantly enriched in the proteins that are central in the human protein-protein interaction network. Analysis of this network showed that signaling pathways important for host immune responses were preferentially targeted by Y. pestis, including the pathways involved in focal adhesion, regulation of cytoskeleton, leukocyte transendoepithelial migration, and Toll-like receptor (TLR) and mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) signaling. Cellular pathways targeted by Y. pestis are highly relevant to its pathogenesis. Interactions with host proteins involved in focal adhesion and cytoskeketon regulation pathways could account for resistance of Y. pestis to phagocytosis. Interference with TLR and MAPK signaling pathways by Y. pestis reflects common characteristics of pathogen-host interaction that bacterial pathogens have evolved to evade host innate immune response by interacting with proteins in those signaling pathways. Interestingly, a large portion of human proteins interacting with Y. pestis (16/109) also interacted with viral proteins (Epstein-Barr virus [EBV] and hepatitis C virus [HCV]), suggesting that viral and bacterial pathogens attack common cellular functions to facilitate infections. In addition, we identified vasodilator-stimulated phosphoprotein (VASP) as a novel interaction partner of YpkA and showed that YpkA could inhibit in vitro actin assembly mediated by VASP.

  13. Involvement of hrpX and hrpG in the Virulence of Acidovorax citrulli Strain Aac5, Causal Agent of Bacterial Fruit Blotch in Cucurbits

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xiaoxiao Zhang

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available Acidovorax citrulli causes bacterial fruit blotch, a disease that poses a global threat to watermelon and melon production. Despite its economic importance, relatively little is known about the molecular mechanisms of pathogenicity and virulence of A. citrulli. Like other plant-pathogenic bacteria, A. citrulli relies on a type III secretion system (T3SS for pathogenicity. On the basis of sequence and operon arrangement analyses, A. citrulli was found to have a class II hrp gene cluster similar to those of Xanthomonas and Ralstonia spp. In the class II hrp cluster, hrpG and hrpX play key roles in the regulation of T3SS effectors. However, little is known about the regulation of the T3SS in A. citrulli. This study aimed to investigate the roles of hrpG and hrpX in A. citrulli pathogenicity. We found that hrpG or hrpX deletion mutants of the A. citrulli group II strain Aac5 had reduced pathogenicity on watermelon seedlings, failed to induce a hypersensitive response in tobacco, and elicited higher levels of reactive oxygen species in Nicotiana benthamiana than the wild-type strain. Additionally, we demonstrated that HrpG activates HrpX in A. citrulli. Moreover, transcription and translation of the type 3-secreted effector (T3E gene Aac5_2166 were suppressed in hrpG and hrpX mutants. Notably, hrpG and hrpX appeared to modulate biofilm formation. These results suggest that hrpG and hrpX are essential for pathogenicity, regulation of T3Es, and biofilm formation in A. citrulli.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Joly-Guillou, M L

    1998-12-01

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

  15. The project “understAID” – a platform that helps informal caregivers to understand and aid their demented relatives

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Skorupska, Elżbieta; Mojs, Ewa; Samborski, Włodzimierz

    2014-01-01

    UnderstAID” is a platform that helps informal caregivers to understand and aid their demented relatives. It is an international project initiated by Denmark, Poland and Spain. The aim of the project is to design, and implement the multimedia platform “understAID” to support informal caregivers...... of dementia patients. The project was launched in April 2013 and is expected to end 36 months later. The project is divided into fi ve tasks concerning the fi nal aim. The aim of task 1 is the management of the project, as well as the exploitation and dissemination of gathered information. Task 2 is meant...... to defi ne the contents and solutions of the CarePlatform based on the knowledge gained from real-case studies. Demented elderlies from each country (n = 40) suffering from different degrees of dementia were evaluated by formal caregivers and dementia professionals. The aim of task 3 is the development...

  16. A Study of the Understated Violence Within Social Contexts Against Adolescent Girls

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shivangi Nigam

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available Violence against women is linked to their disadvantaged position in the society. It is rooted in unequal power relationships between men and women in society and is a global problem which is not limited to a specific group of women in society. An adolescent girl’s life is often accustomed to the likelihood of violence, and acts of violence exert additional power over girls because the stigma of violence often attaches more to a girl than to the perpetrator. The experience of violence is distressing at the individual emotional and physical level. The field of research and programmes for adolescent girls has traditionally focused on sexuality, reproductive health, and behaviour, neglecting the broader social issues that underpin adolescent girls’ human rights, overall development, health, and well-being. This paper is an endeavour to address the understated or disguised form of violence which the adolescent girls experience within the social contexts. The parameters exposed under this research had been ignored to a large extent when it comes to studying the dimension of violence under the social domain. Hence, the researchers attempted to explore this camouflaged form of violence and discovered some specific parameters such as: Diminished Self Worth and Esteem, Verbal Abuse, Menstruation Taboo and Social Rigidity, Negligence of Medical and Health Facilities and Complexion- A Prime Parameter for Judging Beauty. The study was conducted in the districts of Haryana (India where personal interviews were taken from both urban and rural adolescent girls (aged 13 to 19 years based on a structured interview schedule. The results revealed that the adolescent girls, both in urban as well as rural areas were quite affected with the above mentioned issues. In urban areas, however, due to the higher literacy rate, which resulted in more rational thinking, the magnitude was comparatively smaller, but the difference was still negligible.

  17. UnderstAID, an ICT Platform to Help Informal Caregivers of People with Dementia: A Pilot Randomized Controlled Study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Núñez-Naveira, Laura; Alonso-Búa, Begoña; de Labra, Carmen; Gregersen, Rikke; Maibom, Kirsten; Mojs, Ewa; Krawczyk-Wasielewska, Agnieszka; Millán-Calenti, José Carlos

    2016-01-01

    Information and communications technology (ICT) could support ambient assisted living (AAL) based interventions to provide support to informal caregivers of people with dementia, especially when they need to cope with their feelings of overburden or isolation. An e-learning platform (understAID application) was tested by informal caregivers from Denmark, Poland, and Spain to explore the technical and the pedagogical specifications, as well as evaluating the impact of its use on the psychological status of the participants. 61 informal caregivers completed the study taking part in the experimental ( n = 30) or control ( n = 31) groups. 33.3% of the caregivers were satisfied with the application and around 50% of the participants assessed it as technically and pedagogically acceptable. After using understAID the caregivers in the experimental group significantly decreased their depressive symptomatology according to the Center for Epidemiologic Studies Depression scale, but a possible benefit on their feelings of competence and satisfaction with the caring experience was also observed. The low scores obtained for satisfaction were highlighting issues that need to be modified to meet the informal caregivers' needs in national, social, and cultural context. Some possible biases are also considered and discussed to be taken into account in future improvements of understAID application.

  18. Polar localization of PhoN2, a periplasmic virulence-associated factor of Shigella flexneri, is required for proper IcsA exposition at the old bacterial pole.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Daniela Scribano

    Full Text Available Proper protein localization is critical for bacterial virulence. PhoN2 is a virulence-associated ATP-diphosphohydrolase (apyrase involved in IcsA-mediated actin-based motility of S. flexneri. Herein, by analyzing a ΔphoN2 mutant of the S. flexneri strain M90T and by generating phoN2::HA fusions, we show that PhoN2, is a periplasmic protein that strictly localizes at the bacterial poles, with a strong preference for the old pole, the pole where IcsA is exposed, and that it is required for proper IcsA exposition. PhoN2-HA was found to be polarly localized both when phoN2::HA was ectopically expressed in a Escherichia coli K-12 strain and in a S. flexneri virulence plasmid-cured mutant, indicating a conserved mechanism of PhoN2 polar delivery across species and that neither IcsA nor the expression of other virulence-plasmid encoded genes are involved in this process. To assess whether PhoN2 and IcsA may interact, two-hybrid and cross-linking experiments were performed. While no evidence was found of a PhoN2-IcsA interaction, unexpectedly the outer membrane protein A (OmpA was shown to bind PhoN2-HA through its periplasmic-exposed C-terminal domain. Therefore, to identify PhoN2 domains involved in its periplasmic polar delivery as well as in the interaction with OmpA, a deletion and a set of specific amino acid substitutions were generated. Analysis of these mutants indicated that neither the (183PAPAP(187 motif of OmpA, nor the N-terminal polyproline (43PPPP(46 motif and the Y155 residue of PhoN2 are involved in this interaction while P45, P46 and Y155 residues were found to be critical for the correct folding and stability of the protein. The relative rapid degradation of these amino acid-substituted recombinant proteins was found to be due to unknown S. flexneri-specific protease(s. A model depicting how the PhoN2-OmpA interaction may contribute to proper polar IcsA exposition in S. flexneri is presented.

  19. Polar localization of PhoN2, a periplasmic virulence-associated factor of Shigella flexneri, is required for proper IcsA exposition at the old bacterial pole.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scribano, Daniela; Petrucca, Andrea; Pompili, Monica; Ambrosi, Cecilia; Bruni, Elena; Zagaglia, Carlo; Prosseda, Gianni; Nencioni, Lucia; Casalino, Mariassunta; Polticelli, Fabio; Nicoletti, Mauro

    2014-01-01

    Proper protein localization is critical for bacterial virulence. PhoN2 is a virulence-associated ATP-diphosphohydrolase (apyrase) involved in IcsA-mediated actin-based motility of S. flexneri. Herein, by analyzing a ΔphoN2 mutant of the S. flexneri strain M90T and by generating phoN2::HA fusions, we show that PhoN2, is a periplasmic protein that strictly localizes at the bacterial poles, with a strong preference for the old pole, the pole where IcsA is exposed, and that it is required for proper IcsA exposition. PhoN2-HA was found to be polarly localized both when phoN2::HA was ectopically expressed in a Escherichia coli K-12 strain and in a S. flexneri virulence plasmid-cured mutant, indicating a conserved mechanism of PhoN2 polar delivery across species and that neither IcsA nor the expression of other virulence-plasmid encoded genes are involved in this process. To assess whether PhoN2 and IcsA may interact, two-hybrid and cross-linking experiments were performed. While no evidence was found of a PhoN2-IcsA interaction, unexpectedly the outer membrane protein A (OmpA) was shown to bind PhoN2-HA through its periplasmic-exposed C-terminal domain. Therefore, to identify PhoN2 domains involved in its periplasmic polar delivery as well as in the interaction with OmpA, a deletion and a set of specific amino acid substitutions were generated. Analysis of these mutants indicated that neither the (183)PAPAP(187) motif of OmpA, nor the N-terminal polyproline (43)PPPP(46) motif and the Y155 residue of PhoN2 are involved in this interaction while P45, P46 and Y155 residues were found to be critical for the correct folding and stability of the protein. The relative rapid degradation of these amino acid-substituted recombinant proteins was found to be due to unknown S. flexneri-specific protease(s). A model depicting how the PhoN2-OmpA interaction may contribute to proper polar IcsA exposition in S. flexneri is presented.

  20. The TLR2 Antagonist Staphylococcal Superantigen-Like Protein 3 Acts as a Virulence Factor to Promote Bacterial Pathogenicity in vivo

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Koymans, Kirsten J.; Goldmann, Oliver; Karlsson, Christofer A.Q.; Sital, Wiedjai; Thänert, Robert; Bisschop, Adinda; Vrieling, Manouk; Malmström, Johan; van Kessel, Kok P M; De Haas, Carla J.C.; Van Strijp, Jos A.G.; Medina, Eva

    2017-01-01

    Toll-like receptor (TLR) signaling is important in the initiation of immune responses and subsequent instigation of adaptive immunity. TLR2 recognizes bacterial lipoproteins and plays a central role in the host defense against bacterial infections, including those caused by Staphylococcus aureus.

  1. Draft Genome Sequence of Highly Virulent Race 4/Biovar 3 of Ralstonia solanacearum CaRs_Mep Causing Bacterial Wilt in Zingiberaceae Plants in India.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kumar, Aundy; Munjal, Vibhuti; Sheoran, Neelam; Prameela, Thekkan Puthiyaveedu; Suseelabhai, Rajamma; Aggarwal, Rashmi; Jain, Rakesh Kumar; Eapen, Santhosh J

    2017-01-05

    The genome of Ralstonia solanacearum CaRs_Mep, a race 4/biovar 3/phylotype I bacterium causing wilt in small cardamom and other Zingiberaceae plants, was sequenced. Analysis of the 5.7-Mb genome sequence will aid in better understanding of the genetic determinants of host range, host jump, survival, pathogenicity, and virulence of race 4 of R. solanacearum. Copyright © 2017 Kumar et al.

  2. Helicobacter pylori virulence and cancer pathogenesis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yamaoka, Yoshio; Graham, David Y

    2014-06-01

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

  3. Microbial virulence and interactions with metals

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    German, N.; Lüthje, Freja Lea; Hao, X.

    2016-01-01

    Transition metals, such as iron, copper, zinc, and manganese play an important role in many bacterial biological processes that add to an overall evolutional fitness of bacteria. They are often involved in regulation of bacterial virulence as a mechanism of host invasion. However, the same transi...

  4. Bacterial size matters: Multiple mechanisms controlling septum cleavage and diplococcus formation are critical for the virulence of the opportunistic pathogen Enterococcus faecalis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Salamaga, Bartłomiej; Prajsnar, Tomasz K.; Willemse, Joost; Bewley, Martin A.; Chau, Françoise

    2017-01-01

    Enterococcus faecalis is an opportunistic pathogen frequently isolated in clinical settings. This organism is intrinsically resistant to several clinically relevant antibiotics and can transfer resistance to other pathogens. Although E. faecalis has emerged as a major nosocomial pathogen, the mechanisms underlying the virulence of this organism remain elusive. We studied the regulation of daughter cell separation during growth and explored the impact of this process on pathogenesis. We demonstrate that the activity of the AtlA peptidoglycan hydrolase, an enzyme dedicated to septum cleavage, is controlled by several mechanisms, including glycosylation and recognition of the peptidoglycan substrate. We show that the long cell chains of E. faecalis mutants are more susceptible to phagocytosis and are no longer able to cause lethality in the zebrafish model of infection. Altogether, this work indicates that control of cell separation during division underpins the pathogenesis of E. faecalis infections and represents a novel enterococcal virulence factor. We propose that inhibition of septum cleavage during division represents an attractive therapeutic strategy to control infections. PMID:28742152

  5. Bacterial size matters: Multiple mechanisms controlling septum cleavage and diplococcus formation are critical for the virulence of the opportunistic pathogen Enterococcus faecalis.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bartłomiej Salamaga

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available Enterococcus faecalis is an opportunistic pathogen frequently isolated in clinical settings. This organism is intrinsically resistant to several clinically relevant antibiotics and can transfer resistance to other pathogens. Although E. faecalis has emerged as a major nosocomial pathogen, the mechanisms underlying the virulence of this organism remain elusive. We studied the regulation of daughter cell separation during growth and explored the impact of this process on pathogenesis. We demonstrate that the activity of the AtlA peptidoglycan hydrolase, an enzyme dedicated to septum cleavage, is controlled by several mechanisms, including glycosylation and recognition of the peptidoglycan substrate. We show that the long cell chains of E. faecalis mutants are more susceptible to phagocytosis and are no longer able to cause lethality in the zebrafish model of infection. Altogether, this work indicates that control of cell separation during division underpins the pathogenesis of E. faecalis infections and represents a novel enterococcal virulence factor. We propose that inhibition of septum cleavage during division represents an attractive therapeutic strategy to control infections.

  6. Association study of multiple antibiotic resistance and virulence: a strategy to assess the extent of risk posed by bacterial population in aquatic environment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Singh, Santosh Kumar; Ekka, Roseleen; Mishra, Mitali; Mohapatra, Harapriya

    2017-07-01

    The present study explored the association between multiple antibiotic resistance (MAR) index and virulence index to determine what percent of environmental antibiotic-resistant (eARB) bacteria could pose threat as potential pathogen. 16srRNA-based sequencing of 113 non-duplicate isolates identified majority of them to be gram negative belonging to Enterobacter, Pseudomonas, Aeromonas, Proteus, Acinetobacter, and Klebsiella. Statistical comparison of MAR indices of the abovementioned genera indicated differences in the median values among the groups (p  Klebsiella = Acinetobacter > Proteus > Aeromonas > Enterobacter. Association between MAR index and virulence index revealed that 25% of isolates in the population under study posed high threat to human/animal or both; out of which 75% isolates belonged to genus Pseudomonas. Based on observations of comparative analysis of the six gram-negative genera, it could be concluded that Pseudomonas isolates from environment pose significantly high threat as potential pathogens while Enterobacter isolates posed no threat.

  7. Context-dependent protein folding of a virulence peptide in the bacterial and host environments: structure of an SycH–YopH chaperone–effector complex

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Vujanac, Milos; Stebbins, C. Erec

    2013-01-01

    The structure of a SycH–YopH chaperone–effector complex from Yersinia reveals the bacterial state of a protein that adopts different folds in the host and pathogen environments. Yersinia pestis injects numerous bacterial proteins into host cells through an organic nanomachine called the type 3 secretion system. One such substrate is the tyrosine phosphatase YopH, which requires an interaction with a cognate chaperone in order to be effectively injected. Here, the first crystal structure of a SycH–YopH complex is reported, determined to 1.9 Å resolution. The structure reveals the presence of (i) a nonglobular polypeptide in YopH, (ii) a so-called β-motif in YopH and (iii) a conserved hydrophobic patch in SycH that recognizes the β-motif. Biochemical studies establish that the β-motif is critical to the stability of this complex. Finally, since previous work has shown that the N-terminal portion of YopH adopts a globular fold that is functional in the host cell, aspects of how this polypeptide adopts radically different folds in the host and in the bacterial environments are analysed

  8. Prevention of bacterial adhesion

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Klemm, Per; Vejborg, Rebecca Munk; Hancock, Viktoria

    2010-01-01

    . As such, adhesion represents the Achilles heel of crucial pathogenic functions. It follows that interference with adhesion can reduce bacterial virulence. Here, we illustrate this important topic with examples of techniques being developed that can inhibit bacterial adhesion. Some of these will become...

  9. Comparative Genomics of Field Isolates of Mycobacterium bovis and M. caprae Provides Evidence for Possible Correlates with Bacterial Viability and Virulence.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    José de la Fuente

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available Mycobacteria of the Mycobacterium tuberculosis complex (MTBC greatly affect humans and animals worldwide. The life cycle of mycobacteria is complex and the mechanisms resulting in pathogen infection and survival in host cells are not fully understood. Recently, comparative genomics analyses have provided new insights into the evolution and adaptation of the MTBC to survive inside the host. However, most of this information has been obtained using M. tuberculosis but not other members of the MTBC such as M. bovis and M. caprae. In this study, the genome of three M. bovis (MB1, MB3, MB4 and one M. caprae (MB2 field isolates with different lesion score, prevalence and host distribution phenotypes were sequenced. Genome sequence information was used for whole-genome and protein-targeted comparative genomics analysis with the aim of finding correlates with phenotypic variation with potential implications for tuberculosis (TB disease risk assessment and control. At the whole-genome level the results of the first comparative genomics study of field isolates of M. bovis including M. caprae showed that as previously reported for M. tuberculosis, sequential chromosomal nucleotide substitutions were the main driver of the M. bovis genome evolution. The phylogenetic analysis provided a strong support for the M. bovis/M. caprae clade, but supported M. caprae as a separate species. The comparison of the MB1 and MB4 isolates revealed differences in genome sequence, including gene families that are important for bacterial infection and transmission, thus highlighting differences with functional implications between isolates otherwise classified with the same spoligotype. Strategic protein-targeted analysis using the ESX or type VII secretion system, proteins linking stress response with lipid metabolism, host T cell epitopes of mycobacteria, antigens and peptidoglycan assembly protein identified new genetic markers and candidate vaccine antigens that warrant

  10. Comparative Genomics of Field Isolates of Mycobacterium bovis and M. caprae Provides Evidence for Possible Correlates with Bacterial Viability and Virulence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    de la Fuente, José; Díez-Delgado, Iratxe; Contreras, Marinela; Vicente, Joaquín; Cabezas-Cruz, Alejandro; Tobes, Raquel; Manrique, Marina; López, Vladimir; Romero, Beatriz; Bezos, Javier; Dominguez, Lucas; Sevilla, Iker A; Garrido, Joseba M; Juste, Ramón; Madico, Guillermo; Jones-López, Edward; Gortazar, Christian

    2015-11-01

    Mycobacteria of the Mycobacterium tuberculosis complex (MTBC) greatly affect humans and animals worldwide. The life cycle of mycobacteria is complex and the mechanisms resulting in pathogen infection and survival in host cells are not fully understood. Recently, comparative genomics analyses have provided new insights into the evolution and adaptation of the MTBC to survive inside the host. However, most of this information has been obtained using M. tuberculosis but not other members of the MTBC such as M. bovis and M. caprae. In this study, the genome of three M. bovis (MB1, MB3, MB4) and one M. caprae (MB2) field isolates with different lesion score, prevalence and host distribution phenotypes were sequenced. Genome sequence information was used for whole-genome and protein-targeted comparative genomics analysis with the aim of finding correlates with phenotypic variation with potential implications for tuberculosis (TB) disease risk assessment and control. At the whole-genome level the results of the first comparative genomics study of field isolates of M. bovis including M. caprae showed that as previously reported for M. tuberculosis, sequential chromosomal nucleotide substitutions were the main driver of the M. bovis genome evolution. The phylogenetic analysis provided a strong support for the M. bovis/M. caprae clade, but supported M. caprae as a separate species. The comparison of the MB1 and MB4 isolates revealed differences in genome sequence, including gene families that are important for bacterial infection and transmission, thus highlighting differences with functional implications between isolates otherwise classified with the same spoligotype. Strategic protein-targeted analysis using the ESX or type VII secretion system, proteins linking stress response with lipid metabolism, host T cell epitopes of mycobacteria, antigens and peptidoglycan assembly protein identified new genetic markers and candidate vaccine antigens that warrant further study to

  11. DNA microarray-based genome comparison of a pathogenic and a nonpathogenic strain of Xylella fastidiosa delineates genes important for bacterial virulence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Koide, Tie; Zaini, Paulo A; Moreira, Leandro M; Vêncio, Ricardo Z N; Matsukuma, Adriana Y; Durham, Alan M; Teixeira, Diva C; El-Dorry, Hamza; Monteiro, Patrícia B; da Silva, Ana Claudia R; Verjovski-Almeida, Sergio; da Silva, Aline M; Gomes, Suely L

    2004-08-01

    Xylella fastidiosa is a phytopathogenic bacterium that causes serious diseases in a wide range of economically important crops. Despite extensive comparative analyses of genome sequences of Xylella pathogenic strains from different plant hosts, nonpathogenic strains have not been studied. In this report, we show that X. fastidiosa strain J1a12, associated with citrus variegated chlorosis (CVC), is nonpathogenic when injected into citrus and tobacco plants. Furthermore, a DNA microarray-based comparison of J1a12 with 9a5c, a CVC strain that is highly pathogenic and had its genome completely sequenced, revealed that 14 coding sequences of strain 9a5c are absent or highly divergent in strain J1a12. Among them, we found an arginase and a fimbrial adhesin precursor of type III pilus, which were confirmed to be absent in the nonpathogenic strain by PCR and DNA sequencing. The absence of arginase can be correlated to the inability of J1a12 to multiply in host plants. This enzyme has been recently shown to act as a bacterial survival mechanism by down-regulating host nitric oxide production. The lack of the adhesin precursor gene is in accordance with the less aggregated phenotype observed for J1a12 cells growing in vitro. Thus, the absence of both genes can be associated with the failure of the J1a12 strain to establish and spread in citrus and tobacco plants. These results provide the first detailed comparison between a nonpathogenic strain and a pathogenic strain of X. fastidiosa, constituting an important step towards understanding the molecular basis of the disease.

  12. Expression of virulence factors by Staphylococcus aureus grown in serum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oogai, Yuichi; Matsuo, Miki; Hashimoto, Masahito; Kato, Fuminori; Sugai, Motoyuki; Komatsuzawa, Hitoshi

    2011-11-01

    Staphylococcus aureus produces many virulence factors, including toxins, immune-modulatory factors, and exoenzymes. Previous studies involving the analysis of virulence expression were mainly performed by in vitro experiments using bacterial medium. However, when S. aureus infects a host, the bacterial growth conditions are quite different from those in a medium, which may be related to the different expression of virulence factors in the host. In this study, we investigated the expression of virulence factors in S. aureus grown in calf serum. The expression of many virulence factors, including hemolysins, enterotoxins, proteases, and iron acquisition factors, was significantly increased compared with that in bacterial medium. In addition, the expression of RNA III, a global regulon for virulence expression, was significantly increased. This effect was partially restored by the addition of 300 μM FeCl₃ into serum, suggesting that iron depletion is associated with the increased expression of virulence factors in serum. In chemically defined medium without iron, a similar effect was observed. In a mutant with agr inactivated grown in serum, the expression of RNA III, psm, and sec4 was not increased, while other factors were still induced in the mutant, suggesting that another regulatory factor(s) is involved. In addition, we found that serum albumin is a major factor for the capture of free iron to prevent the supply of iron to bacteria grown in serum. These results indicate that S. aureus expresses virulence factors in adaptation to the host environment.

  13. Expression of Virulence Factors by Staphylococcus aureus Grown in Serum▿†

    OpenAIRE

    Oogai, Yuichi; Matsuo, Miki; Hashimoto, Masahito; Kato, Fuminori; Sugai, Motoyuki; Komatsuzawa, Hitoshi

    2011-01-01

    Staphylococcus aureus produces many virulence factors, including toxins, immune-modulatory factors, and exoenzymes. Previous studies involving the analysis of virulence expression were mainly performed by in vitro experiments using bacterial medium. However, when S. aureus infects a host, the bacterial growth conditions are quite different from those in a medium, which may be related to the different expression of virulence factors in the host. In this study, we investigated the expression of...

  14. Salmonella-secreted Virulence Factors

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

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

    2011-05-01

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

  15. A Molecular Genetic Basis Explaining Altered Bacterial Behavior in Space

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — Bacterial behavior has been observed to change during spaceflight. Higher final cell counts enhanced biofilm formation increased virulence and reduced susceptibility...

  16. Interfering with bacterial gossip

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bjarnsholt, Thomas; Tolker-Nielsen, Tim; Givskov, Michael

    2011-01-01

    that appropriately target bacteria in their relevant habitat with the aim of mitigating their destructive impact on patients. In this review we describe molecular mechanisms involved in “bacterial gossip” (more scientifically referred to as quorum sensing (QS) and c-di-GMP signaling), virulence, biofilm formation...

  17. Virulence factors of the Mycobacterium tuberculosis complex

    Science.gov (United States)

    Forrellad, Marina A.; Klepp, Laura I.; Gioffré, Andrea; Sabio y García, Julia; Morbidoni, Hector R.; Santangelo, María de la Paz; Cataldi, Angel A.; Bigi, Fabiana

    2013-01-01

    The Mycobacterium tuberculosis complex (MTBC) consists of closely related species that cause tuberculosis in both humans and animals. This illness, still today, remains to be one of the leading causes of morbidity and mortality throughout the world. The mycobacteria enter the host by air, and, once in the lungs, are phagocytated by macrophages. This may lead to the rapid elimination of the bacillus or to the triggering of an active tuberculosis infection. A large number of different virulence factors have evolved in MTBC members as a response to the host immune reaction. The aim of this review is to describe the bacterial genes/proteins that are essential for the virulence of MTBC species, and that have been demonstrated in an in vivo model of infection. Knowledge of MTBC virulence factors is essential for the development of new vaccines and drugs to help manage the disease toward an increasingly more tuberculosis-free world. PMID:23076359

  18. Efflux inhibitor suppresses Streptococcus mutans virulence properties.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zeng, Huihui; Liu, Jia; Ling, Junqi

    2017-04-01

    It is well established that efflux pumps play important roles in bacterial pathogenicity and efflux inhibitors (EIs) have been proved to be effective in suppressing bacterial virulence properties. However, little is known regarding the EI of Streptococcus mutans, a well-known caries-inducing bacterium. In this study, we identified the EI of S. mutans through ethidium bromide efflux assay and investigated how EI affected S. mutans virulence regarding the cariogenicity and stress response. Results indicated that reserpine, the identified EI, suppressed acid tolerance, mutacin production and transformation efficiency of S. mutans, and modified biofilm architecture and extracellular polysaccharide distribution. Suppressed glycosyltransferase activity was also noted after reserpine exposure. The data from quantitative real-time-PCR demonstrated that reserpine significantly altered the expression profile of quorum-sensing and virulence-associated genes. These findings suggest that reserpine represents a promising adjunct anticariogenic agent in that it suppresses virulence properties of S. mutans. © FEMS 2017. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  19. Copper tolerance and virulence in bacteria

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ladomersky, Erik; Petris, Michael J.

    2015-01-01

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

  20. The importance of virulence prediction and gene networks in microbial risk assessment

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Wassenaar, Gertrude Maria; Gamieldien, Junaid; Shatkin, JoAnne

    2007-01-01

    For microbial risk assessment, it is necessary to recognize and predict Virulence of bacterial pathogens, including their ability to contaminate foods. Hazard characterization requires data on strain variability regarding virulence and survival during food processing. Moreover, information...... and characterization of microbial hazards, including emerging pathogens, in the context of microbial risk assessment....

  1. Virulence Factors Associated with Enterococcus Faecalis Infective Endocarditis

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Madsen, Kristian T; Skov, Marianne N; Gill, Sabine

    2017-01-01

    INTRODUCTION: The enterococci are accountable for up to 20% of all cases of infective endocarditis, with Enterococcus faecalis being the primary causative isolate. Infective endocarditis is a life-threatening infection of the endocardium that results in the formation of vegetations. Based...... on a literature review, this paper provides an overview of the virulence factors associated with E. faecalis infective endocarditis. Furthermore, it reports the effects of active or passive immunization against some of these involved factors. INDIVIDUAL VIRULENCE FACTORS: Nine virulence factors have in particular...... been associated with E. faecalis infective endocarditis. Absence of these factors entailed attenuation of strains in both mixed- and mono-bacterial infection endocarditis models as well as in in vitro and ex vivo assays when compared to their virulence factor expressing parental strains. PATHOGENESIS...

  2. Riboregulators: Fine-Tuning Virulence in Shigella.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fris, Megan E; Murphy, Erin R

    2016-01-01

    Within the past several years, RNA-mediated regulation (ribo-regulation) has become increasingly recognized for its importance in controlling critical bacterial processes. Regulatory RNA molecules, or riboregulators, are perpetually responsive to changes within the micro-environment of a bacterium. Notably, several characterized riboregulators control virulence in pathogenic bacteria, as is the case for each riboregulator characterized to date in Shigella. The timing of virulence gene expression and the ability of the pathogen to adapt to rapidly changing environmental conditions is critical to the establishment and progression of infection by Shigella species; ribo-regulators mediate each of these important processes. This mini review will present the current state of knowledge regarding RNA-mediated regulation in Shigella by detailing the characterization and function of each identified riboregulator in these pathogens.

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

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

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

    2011-06-28

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

  4. The Role of Antibiotics in Modulating Virulence in Staphylococcus aureus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hodille, Elisabeth; Rose, Warren; Diep, Binh An; Goutelle, Sylvain; Lina, Gerard; Dumitrescu, Oana

    2017-10-01

    Staphylococcus aureus is often involved in severe infections, in which the effects of bacterial virulence factors have great importance. Antistaphylococcal regimens should take into account the different effects of antibacterial agents on the expression of virulence factors and on the host's immune response. A PubMed literature search was performed to select relevant articles on the effects of antibiotics on staphylococcal toxin production and on the host immune response. Information was sorted according to the methods used for data acquisition (bacterial strains, growth models, and antibiotic concentrations) and the assays used for readout generation. The reported mechanisms underlying S. aureus virulence modulation by antibiotics were reviewed. The relevance of in vitro observations is discussed in relation to animal model data and to clinical evidence extracted from case reports and recommendations on the management of toxin-related staphylococcal diseases. Most in vitro data point to a decreased level of virulence expression upon treatment with ribosomally active antibiotics (linezolid and clindamycin), while cell wall-active antibiotics (beta-lactams) mainly increase exotoxin production. In vivo studies confirmed the suppressive effect of clindamycin and linezolid on virulence expression, supporting their utilization as a valuable management strategy to improve patient outcomes in cases of toxin-associated staphylococcal disease. Copyright © 2017 American Society for Microbiology.

  5. Transient virulence of emerging pathogens.

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2010-05-06

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

  6. Virulence of Xanthomonas translucens pv. poae Isolated from Poa annua

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Arielle Chaves

    2013-03-01

    Full Text Available Bacterial wilt is a vascular wilt disease caused by Xanthomonas translucens pv. poae that infects Poa annua, a grass that is commonly found on golf course greens throughout the world. Bacterial wilt causes symptoms of etiolation, wilting, and foliar necrosis. The damage is most prevalent during the summer and the pathogen can kill turf under conditions optimal for disease development. Fifteen isolates of X. translucens pv. poae were collected from northern regions in the United States and tested for virulence against P. annua. All 15 isolates were pathogenic on P. annua, but demonstrated variable levels of virulence when inoculated onto P. annua under greenhouse conditions. The isolates were divided into two virulence groups. The first group containing four isolates generally resulted in less than 40% mortality following inoculation. The second group, containing the other eleven isolates, produced between 90 and 100% mortality following inoculation. These results suggest that differences in the virulence of bacterial populations present on a golf course may result in more or less severe amounts of observed disease.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2017-06-01

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

  8. Virulence Factors of Helicobacter pylori

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Paul Sinclair

    1991-01-01

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

  9. Virulence Factors of Erwinia amylovora: A Review

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Núria Piqué

    2015-06-01

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

  10. Phages can constrain protist predation-driven attenuation of Pseudomonas aeruginosa virulence in multienemy communities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Friman, Ville-Petri; Buckling, Angus

    2014-01-01

    The coincidental theory of virulence predicts that bacterial pathogenicity could be a by-product of selection by natural enemies in environmental reservoirs. However, current results are ambiguous and the simultaneous impact of multiple ubiquitous enemies, protists and phages on virulence evolution has not been investigated previously. Here we tested experimentally how Tetrahymena thermophila protist predation and PNM phage parasitism (bacteria-specific virus) alone and together affect the evolution of Pseudomonas aeruginosa PAO1 virulence, measured in wax moth larvae. Protist predation selected for small colony types, both in the absence and presence of phage, which showed decreased edibility to protists, reduced growth in the absence of enemies and attenuated virulence. Although phage selection alone did not affect the bacterial phenotype, it weakened protist-driven antipredatory defence (biofilm formation), its associated pleiotropic growth cost and the correlated reduction in virulence. These results suggest that protist selection can be a strong coincidental driver of attenuated bacterial virulence, and that phages can constrain this effect owing to effects on population dynamics and conflicting selection pressures. Attempting to define causal links such as these might help us to predict the cold and hot spots of coincidental virulence evolution on the basis of microbial community composition of environmental reservoirs. PMID:24671085

  11. The metabolic regulator CodY links L. monocytogenes metabolism to virulence by directly activating the virulence regulatory gene, prfA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lobel, Lior; Sigal, Nadejda; Borovok, Ilya; Belitsky, Boris R.; Sonenshein, Abraham L.; Herskovits, Anat A.

    2015-01-01

    Summary Metabolic adaptations are critical to the ability of bacterial pathogens to grow within host cells and are normally preceded by sensing of host-specific metabolic signals, which in turn can influence the pathogen's virulence state. Previously, we reported that the intracellular bacterial pathogen Listeria monocytogenes responds to low availability of branched-chain amino acids (BCAA) within mammalian cells by up-regulating both BCAA biosynthesis and virulence genes. The induction of virulence genes required the BCAA-responsive transcription regulator, CodY, but the molecular mechanism governing this mode of regulation was unclear. In this report, we demonstrate that CodY directly binds the coding sequence of the L. monocytogenes master virulence activator gene, prfA, 15 nt downstream of its start codon, and that this binding results in up-regulation of prfA transcription specifically under low concentrations of BCAA. Mutating this site abolished CodY binding and reduced prfA transcription in macrophages, and attenuated bacterial virulence in mice. Notably, the mutated binding site did not alter prfA transcription or PrfA activity under other conditions that are known to activate PrfA, such as during growth in the presence of glucose-1-phosphate. This study highlights the tight crosstalk between L. monocytogenes metabolism and virulence' while revealing novel features of CodY-mediated regulation. PMID:25430920

  12. Bacterial Protein-Tyrosine Kinases

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Shi, Lei; Kobir, Ahasanul; Jers, Carsten

    2010-01-01

    in exopolysaccharide production, virulence, DNA metabolism, stress response and other key functions of the bacterial cell. BY-kinases act through autophosphorylation (mainly in exopolysaccharide production) and phosphorylation of other proteins, which have in most cases been shown to be activated by tyrosine......Bacteria and Eukarya share essentially the same family of protein-serine/threonine kinases, also known as the Hanks-type kinases. However, when it comes to protein-tyrosine phosphorylation, bacteria seem to have gone their own way. Bacterial protein-tyrosine kinases (BY-kinases) are bacterial...... and highlighted their importance in bacterial physiology. Having no orthologues in Eukarya, BY-kinases are receiving a growing attention from the biomedical field, since they represent a particularly promising target for anti-bacterial drug design....

  13. Empirical support for optimal virulence in a castrating parasite.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Knut Helge Jensen

    2006-07-01

    Full Text Available The trade-off hypothesis for the evolution of virulence predicts that parasite transmission stage production and host exploitation are balanced such that lifetime transmission success (LTS is maximised. However, the experimental evidence for this prediction is weak, mainly because LTS, which indicates parasite fitness, has been difficult to measure. For castrating parasites, this simple model has been modified to take into account that parasites convert host reproductive resources into transmission stages. Parasites that kill the host too early will hardly benefit from these resources, while postponing the killing of the host results in diminished returns. As predicted from optimality models, a parasite inducing castration should therefore castrate early, but show intermediate levels of virulence, where virulence is measured as time to host killing. We studied virulence in an experimental system where a bacterial parasite castrates its host and produces spores that are not released until after host death. This permits estimating the LTS of the parasite, which can then be related to its virulence. We exposed replicate individual Daphnia magna (Crustacea of one host clone to the same amount of bacterial spores and followed individuals until their death. We found that the parasite shows strong variation in the time to kill its host and that transmission stage production peaks at an intermediate level of virulence. A further experiment tested for the genetic basis of variation in virulence by comparing survival curves of daphniids infected with parasite spores obtained from early killing versus late killing infections. Hosts infected with early killer spores had a significantly higher death rate as compared to those infected with late killers, indicating that variation in time to death was at least in part caused by genetic differences among parasites. We speculate that the clear peak in lifetime reproductive success at intermediate killing times

  14. Diversities in virulence, antifungal activity, pigmentation and DNA fingerprint among strains of Burkholderia glumae.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Karki, Hari S; Shrestha, Bishnu K; Han, Jae Woo; Groth, Donald E; Barphagha, Inderjit K; Rush, Milton C; Melanson, Rebecca A; Kim, Beom Seok; Ham, Jong Hyun

    2012-01-01

    Burkholderia glumae is the primary causal agent of bacterial panicle blight of rice. In this study, 11 naturally avirulent and nine virulent strains of B. glumae native to the southern United States were characterized in terms of virulence in rice and onion, toxofalvin production, antifungal activity, pigmentation and genomic structure. Virulence of B. glumae strains on rice panicles was highly correlated to virulence on onion bulb scales, suggesting that onion bulb can be a convenient alternative host system to efficiently determine the virulence of B. glumae strains. Production of toxoflavin, the phytotoxin that functions as a major virulence factor, was closely associated with the virulence phenotypes of B. glumae strains in rice. Some strains of B. glumae showed various levels of antifungal activity against Rhizoctonia solani, the causal agent of sheath blight, and pigmentation phenotypes on casamino acid-peptone-glucose (CPG) agar plates regardless of their virulence traits. Purple and yellow-green pigments were partially purified from a pigmenting strain of B. glumae, 411gr-6, and the purple pigment fraction showed a strong antifungal activity against Collectotrichum orbiculare. Genetic variations were detected among the B. glumae strains from DNA fingerprinting analyses by repetitive element sequence-based PCR (rep-PCR) for BOX-A1R-based repetitive extragenic palindromic (BOX) or enterobacterial repetitive intergenic consensus (ERIC) sequences of bacteria; and close genetic relatedness among virulent but pigment-deficient strains were revealed by clustering analyses of DNA fingerprints from BOX-and ERIC-PCR.

  15. Brucella, nitrogen and virulence.

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2016-08-01

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

  16. Screening of virulence genes in Staphylococcus aureus isolates from rabbits

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David Viana Martín

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available Staphylococcus aureus is a versatile pathogen able to cause disease in both humans and animals. In rabbits, this bacterium infects animals of different ages, producing several purulent lesions. The ability of S. aureus to cause disease depends on a combination of virulence factors. The aim of this study was therefore to investigate the distribution of bacterial virulence determinants in 69 S. aureus isolates from rabbits. Some virulence factors (7 adhesins, 1 toxin and 1 protease were positive in all rabbit S. aureus isolates analysed, while others (1 adhesin and 10 toxins were always negative. The remaining virulence factors were more variable among isolates. An association between genotype and the different profiles of virulence factors was observed, but not with the type of lesion (P<0.05. One strain of each genotype was further analysed by multilocus sequence typing, generating ST121, ST96 and ST2951, determining a greater number of enterotoxins in ST121 isolates compared to ST96 and ST2951 isolates, which could justify the different pathogenicity between strains. 

  17. Genetic Regulation of Virulence and Antibiotic Resistance in Acinetobacter baumannii

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kröger, Carsten; Kary, Stefani C.; Schauer, Kristina; Cameron, Andrew D. S.

    2016-01-01

    Multidrug resistant microorganisms are forecast to become the single biggest challenge to medical care in the 21st century. Over the last decades, members of the genus Acinetobacter have emerged as bacterial opportunistic pathogens, in particular as challenging nosocomial pathogens because of the rapid evolution of antimicrobial resistances. Although we lack fundamental biological insight into virulence mechanisms, an increasing number of researchers are working to identify virulence factors and to study antibiotic resistance. Here, we review current knowledge regarding the regulation of virulence genes and antibiotic resistance in Acinetobacter baumannii. A survey of the two-component systems AdeRS, BaeSR, GacSA and PmrAB explains how each contributes to antibiotic resistance and virulence gene expression, while BfmRS regulates cell envelope structures important for pathogen persistence. A. baumannii uses the transcription factors Fur and Zur to sense iron or zinc depletion and upregulate genes for metal scavenging as a critical survival tool in an animal host. Quorum sensing, nucleoid-associated proteins, and non-classical transcription factors such as AtfA and small regulatory RNAs are discussed in the context of virulence and antibiotic resistance. PMID:28036056

  18. OrfX, a Nucleomodulin Required for Listeria monocytogenes Virulence

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrzej Prokop

    2017-10-01

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

  19. Type 1 fimbrial expression enhances Escherichia coli virulence for the urinary tract.

    OpenAIRE

    Connell, I; Agace, W; Klemm, P; Schembri, M; Mărild, S; Svanborg, C

    1996-01-01

    Type 1 fimbriae are adhesion organelles expressed by many Gram-negative bacteria. They facilitate adherence to mucosal surfaces and inflammatory cells in vitro, but their contribution to virulence has not been defined. This study presents evidence that type 1 fimbriae increase the virulence of Escherichia coli for the urinary tract by promoting bacterial persistence and enhancing the inflammatory response to infection. In a clinical study, we observed that disease severity was greater in chil...

  20. Attenuation of Pseudomonas aeruginosa virulence by quorum sensing inhibitors

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hentzer, Morten; Wu, H.; Andersen, Jens Bo

    2003-01-01

    Traditional treatment of infectious diseases is based on compounds that kill or inhibit growth of bacteria. A major concern with this approach is the frequent development of resistance to antibiotics. The discovery of communication systems (quorum sensing systems) regulating bacterial virulence has...... of natural furanone compounds can act as a potent antagonist of bacterial quorum sensing. We employed GeneChip((R)) microarray technology to identify furanone target genes and to map the quorum sensing regulon. The transcriptome analysis showed that the furanone drug specifically targeted quorum sensing...

  1. Metabolism and virulence in Neisseria meningitidis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christoph eSchoen

    2014-08-01

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

  2. Staphylococcus aureus requires less virulence to establish an infection in diabetic hosts.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tuchscherr, Lorena; Korpos, Èva; van de Vyver, Hélène; Findeisen, Clais; Kherkheulidze, Salome; Siegmund, Anke; Deinhardt-Emmer, Stefanie; Bach, Olaf; Rindert, Martin; Mellmann, Alexander; Sunderkötter, Cord; Peters, Georg; Sorokin, Lydia; Löffler, Bettina

    2018-05-22

    Staphylococcus aureus is the most frequent pathogen causing diabetic foot infections. Here, we investigated the degree of bacterial virulence required to establish invasive tissue infections in diabetic organisms. Staphylococcal isolates from diabetic and non-diabetic foot ulcers were tested for their virulence in in vitro functional assays of host cell invasion and cytotoxicity. Isolates from diabetes mellitus type I/II patients exhibited less virulence than isolates from non-diabetic patients, but were nevertheless able to establish severe infections. In some cases, non-invasive isolates were detected deep within diabetic wounds, even though the strains were non-pathogenic in cell culture models. Testing of defined isolates in murine footpad injection models revealed that both low- and high-virulent bacterial strains persisted in higher numbers in diabetic compared to non-diabetic hosts, suggesting that hyperglycemia favors bacterial survival. Additionally, the bacterial load was higher in NOD mice, which have a compromised immune system, compared to C57Bl/6 mice. Our results reveal that high as well as low-virulent staphylococcal strains are able to cause soft tissue infections and to persist in diabetic humans and mice, suggesting a reason for the frequent and endangering infections in patients with diabetes. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier GmbH. All rights reserved.

  3. How Listeria monocytogenes organizes its surface for virulence

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carvalho, Filipe; Sousa, Sandra; Cabanes, Didier

    2014-01-01

    Listeria monocytogenes is a Gram-positive pathogen responsible for the manifestation of human listeriosis, an opportunistic foodborne disease with an associated high mortality rate. The key to the pathogenesis of listeriosis is the capacity of this bacterium to trigger its internalization by non-phagocytic cells and to survive and even replicate within phagocytes. The arsenal of virulence proteins deployed by L. monocytogenes to successfully promote the invasion and infection of host cells has been progressively unveiled over the past decades. A large majority of them is located at the cell envelope, which provides an interface for the establishment of close interactions between these bacterial factors and their host targets. Along the multistep pathways carrying these virulence proteins from the inner side of the cytoplasmic membrane to their cell envelope destination, a multiplicity of auxiliary proteins must act on the immature polypeptides to ensure that they not only maturate into fully functional effectors but also are placed or guided to their correct position in the bacterial surface. As the major scaffold for surface proteins, the cell wall and its metabolism are critical elements in listerial virulence. Conversely, the crucial physical support and protection provided by this structure make it an ideal target for the host immune system. Therefore, mechanisms involving fine modifications of cell envelope components are activated by L. monocytogenes to render it less recognizable by the innate immunity sensors or more resistant to the activity of antimicrobial effectors. This review provides a state-of-the-art compilation of the mechanisms used by L. monocytogenes to organize its surface for virulence, with special focus on those proteins that work “behind the frontline”, either supporting virulence effectors or ensuring the survival of the bacterium within its host. PMID:24809022

  4. Virulence Factors of Streptococcus mutans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    1986-08-01

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

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

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

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

    2011-01-01

    Yersinia pestis, the Gram-negative bacterial agent of plague, is a zoonotic pathogen that primarily infects wild rodents and is transmitted by fleas. Y. pestis is one of the most invasive and virulent bacterial pathogens and has caused devastating pandemics, including the Black Death of 14th century

  6. Bacterial proteases: targets for diagnostics and therapy

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kaman, W.E.; Hays, J.P.; Endtz, H.P.; Bikker, F.J.

    2014-01-01

    Proteases are essential for the proliferation and growth of bacteria, and are also known to contribute to bacterial virulence. This makes them interesting candidates as diagnostic and therapeutic targets for infectious diseases. In this review, the authors discuss the most recent developments and

  7. Identification of Pathways Critical to Quorum Sensing and Virulence Induction

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ognibene, Ted J. [Lawrence Livermore National Lab. (LLNL), Livermore, CA (United States); Young, N. [Lawrence Livermore National Lab. (LLNL), Livermore, CA (United States); Holtz-Morris, A. [Lawrence Livermore National Lab. (LLNL), Livermore, CA (United States); Daley, P. [Lawrence Livermore National Lab. (LLNL), Livermore, CA (United States)

    2009-02-27

    Quorum sensing is a mode of intercellular communication between bacteria that allows them to collectively regulate behavior such as virulence, sporulation, motility and biofilm formation. It is mediated by bacterially synthesized, diffusible, signaling molecules (autoinducers) that increase in concentration as a bacterial population expands until a critical threshold concentration is reached. However, in most bacterial species that produce autoinducer molecules, the physiologic concentration of these molecules is unknown. Moreover, many bacterial species, including Y. pestis, produce an array of quorum sensing molecules and the physiologic concentration of each individual type of autoinducer molecule is not known. There is a need to accurately and precisely quantitate these molecules, as it may be that different types of autoinducer molecules have different effects on virulence in the bacterium. We focused our efforts on the construction of a platform to identify and quantitate autoinducer molecules using FTICR, 14C isotope labeling and accelerator mass spectrometry (AMS). Specifically, we focused on autoinducer-1 type molecules, acylhomoserine lactone (HSL), derived from S-adenosylmethionine (SAM).

  8. Bacterial infection increases risk of carcinogenesis by targeting mitochondria

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Strickertsson, Jesper A.B.; Desler, Claus; Rasmussen, Lene Juel

    2017-01-01

    pathways, and compares the impact of the bacterial alteration of mitochondrial function to that of cancer. Bacterial virulence factors have been demonstrated to induce mutations of mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) and to modulate DNA repair pathways of the mitochondria. Furthermore, virulence factors can induce...... or impair the intrinsic apoptotic pathway. The effect of bacterial targeting of mitochondria is analogous to behavior of mitochondria in a wide array of tumours, and this strongly suggests that mitochondrial targeting of bacteria is a risk factor for carcinogenesis....

  9. Pathogenomic inference of virulence-associated genes in Leptospira interrogans.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jason S Lehmann

    Full Text Available Leptospirosis is a globally important, neglected zoonotic infection caused by spirochetes of the genus Leptospira. Since genetic transformation remains technically limited for pathogenic Leptospira, a systems biology pathogenomic approach was used to infer leptospiral virulence genes by whole genome comparison of culture-attenuated Leptospira interrogans serovar Lai with its virulent, isogenic parent. Among the 11 pathogen-specific protein-coding genes in which non-synonymous mutations were found, a putative soluble adenylate cyclase with host cell cAMP-elevating activity, and two members of a previously unstudied ∼15 member paralogous gene family of unknown function were identified. This gene family was also uniquely found in the alpha-proteobacteria Bartonella bacilliformis and Bartonella australis that are geographically restricted to the Andes and Australia, respectively. How the pathogenic Leptospira and these two Bartonella species came to share this expanded gene family remains an evolutionary mystery. In vivo expression analyses demonstrated up-regulation of 10/11 Leptospira genes identified in the attenuation screen, and profound in vivo, tissue-specific up-regulation by members of the paralogous gene family, suggesting a direct role in virulence and host-pathogen interactions. The pathogenomic experimental design here is generalizable as a functional systems biology approach to studying bacterial pathogenesis and virulence and should encourage similar experimental studies of other pathogens.

  10. Pathogenomic inference of virulence-associated genes in Leptospira interrogans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lehmann, Jason S; Fouts, Derrick E; Haft, Daniel H; Cannella, Anthony P; Ricaldi, Jessica N; Brinkac, Lauren; Harkins, Derek; Durkin, Scott; Sanka, Ravi; Sutton, Granger; Moreno, Angelo; Vinetz, Joseph M; Matthias, Michael A

    2013-01-01

    Leptospirosis is a globally important, neglected zoonotic infection caused by spirochetes of the genus Leptospira. Since genetic transformation remains technically limited for pathogenic Leptospira, a systems biology pathogenomic approach was used to infer leptospiral virulence genes by whole genome comparison of culture-attenuated Leptospira interrogans serovar Lai with its virulent, isogenic parent. Among the 11 pathogen-specific protein-coding genes in which non-synonymous mutations were found, a putative soluble adenylate cyclase with host cell cAMP-elevating activity, and two members of a previously unstudied ∼15 member paralogous gene family of unknown function were identified. This gene family was also uniquely found in the alpha-proteobacteria Bartonella bacilliformis and Bartonella australis that are geographically restricted to the Andes and Australia, respectively. How the pathogenic Leptospira and these two Bartonella species came to share this expanded gene family remains an evolutionary mystery. In vivo expression analyses demonstrated up-regulation of 10/11 Leptospira genes identified in the attenuation screen, and profound in vivo, tissue-specific up-regulation by members of the paralogous gene family, suggesting a direct role in virulence and host-pathogen interactions. The pathogenomic experimental design here is generalizable as a functional systems biology approach to studying bacterial pathogenesis and virulence and should encourage similar experimental studies of other pathogens.

  11. Main functions and taxonomic distribution of virulence genes in Brucella melitensis 16 M.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Aniel Jessica Leticia Brambila-Tapia

    Full Text Available Many virulence genes have been detected in attenuated mutants of Brucella melitensis 16 M; nevertheless, a complete report of these genes, including the main Cluster of Orthologous Groups (COG represented as well as the taxonomical distribution among all complete bacterial and archaeal genomes, has not been analyzed. In this work a total of 160 virulence genes that have been reported in attenuated mutants in B. melitensis were included and analyzed. Additionally, we obtained 250 B. melitensis randomly selected genes as a reference group for the taxonomical comparisons. The COGs and the taxonomical distribution profile for 789 nonredundant bacterial and archaeal genomes were obtained and compared with the whole-genome COG distribution and with the 250 randomly selected genes, respectively. The main COGs associated with virulence genes corresponded to the following: intracellular trafficking, secretion and vesicular transport (U; cell motility (N; nucleotide transport and metabolism (F; transcription (K; and cell wall/membrane/envelope biogenesis (M. In addition, we found that virulence genes presented a higher proportion of orthologs in the Euryarchaeota and Proteobacteria phyla, with a significant decrease in Chlamydiae, Bacteroidetes, Tenericutes, Firmicutes and Thermotogae. In conclusion, we found that genes related to specific functions are more relevant to B. melitensis virulence, with the COG U the most significant. Additionally, the taxonomical distribution of virulence genes highlights the importance of these genes in the related Proteobacteria, being less relevant in distant groups of organisms with the exception of Euryarchaeota.

  12. Synthetic furanones inhibit quorum-sensing and enhance bacterial clearance in Pseudomonas aeruginosa lung infection in mice

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Wu, H.; Song, Z.; Hentzer, Morten

    2004-01-01

    Introduction: Antibiotics are used to treat bacterial infections by killing the bacteria or inhibiting their growth, but resistance to antibiotics can develop readily. The discovery that bacterial quorum-sensing regulates bacterial virulence as well as the formation of biofilms opens up new ways...... to control certain bacterial infections. Furanone compounds capable of inhibiting bacterial quorum-sensing systems have been isolated from the marine macro alga Delisea pulchra. Objectives: Two synthetic furanones were tested for their ability to attenuate bacterial virulence in the mouse models of chronic...

  13. Bacterial meningitis

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Roos, Karen L.; van de Beek, Diederik

    2010-01-01

    Bacterial meningitis is a neurological emergency. Empiric antimicrobial and adjunctive therapy should be initiated as soon as a single set of blood cultures has been obtained. Clinical signs suggestive of bacterial meningitis include fever, headache, meningismus, vomiting, photophobia, and an

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    1995-12-01

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

  15. Protocols for screening antimicrobial peptides that influence virulence gene expression in Staphylococcus aureus

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bojer, Martin Saxtorph; Baldry, Mara; Ingmer, Hanne

    2017-01-01

    Compounds that inhibit virulence gene expression in bacterial pathogens have received increasing interest as possible alternatives to the traditional antibiotic treatment of infections. For the human pathogen Staphylococcus aureus, we have developed two simple assays based on reporter gene fusions...... to central virulence genes that are easily applicable for screening various sources of natural and synthetic peptides for anti-virulence effects. The plate assay is qualitative but simultaneously assesses the effect of gradient concentrations of the investigated compound, whereas the liquid assay...... is quantitative and can be employed to address whether a compound is acting on the central quorum sensing regulatory system, agr, that controls a large number of virulence genes in S. aureus....

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hajer Ouertatani-Sakouhi

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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ying Tianyi

    2010-06-01

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

  18. Cross-infection of virulent Dichelobacter nodosus between sheep and co-grazing cattle

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Knappe-Poindecker, Maren; Gilhuus, Marianne; Jensen, Tim Kåre

    2014-01-01

    the footrot scores recorded. On each farm, the same ten ewes and ten cows were chosen for bacterial analyses. Swabs were analysed for D. nodosus by PCR and culturing. D. nodosus isolates were virulence-tested and assigned to serogroups by fimA variant determination. Biopsies were evaluated histopathologically...

  19. Host age modulates parasite infectivity, virulence and reproduction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Izhar, Rony; Ben-Ami, Frida

    2015-07-01

    Host age is one of the most striking differences among hosts within most populations, but there is very little data on how age-dependent effects impact ecological and evolutionary dynamics of both the host and the parasite. Here, we examined the influence of host age (juveniles, young and old adults) at parasite exposure on host susceptibility, fecundity and survival as well as parasite transmission, using two clones of the water flea Daphnia magna and two clones of its bacterial parasite Pasteuria ramosa. Younger D. magna were more susceptible to infection than older ones, regardless of host or parasite clone. Also, younger-infected D. magna became castrated faster than older hosts, but host and parasite clone effects contributed to this trait as well. Furthermore, the early-infected D. magna produced considerably more parasite transmission stages than late-infected ones, while host age at exposure did not affect virulence as it is defined in models (host mortality). When virulence is defined more broadly as the negative effects of infection on host fitness, by integrating the parasitic effects on host fecundity and mortality, then host age at exposure seems to slide along a negative relationship between host and parasite fitness. Thus, the virulence-transmission trade-off differs strongly among age classes, which in turn affects predictions of optimal virulence. Age-dependent effects on host susceptibility, virulence and parasite transmission could pose an important challenge for experimental and theoretical studies of infectious disease dynamics and disease ecology. Our results present a call for a more explicit stage-structured theory for disease, which will incorporate age-dependent epidemiological parameters. © 2015 The Authors. Journal of Animal Ecology © 2015 British Ecological Society.

  20. Virulence Factors of Aeromonas hydrophila: in the Wake of Reclassification

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cody R Rasmussen-Ivey

    2016-08-01

    Full Text Available The ubiquitous jack-of-all-trades, Aeromonas hydrophila, is a freshwater, Gram-negative bacterial pathogen under revision in regard to its phylogenetic and functional affiliation with other aeromonads. While virulence factors are expectedly diverse across A. hydrophila strains and closely related species, our mechanistic knowledge of the vast majority of these factors is based on the molecular characterization of the strains A. hydrophila AH-3 and SSU, which were reclassified as A. piscicola AH-3 in 2009 and A. dhakensis SSU in 2013. Individually, these reclassifications raise important questions involving the applicability of previous research on A. hydrophila virulence mechanisms; however, this issue is exacerbated by a lack of genomic data on other research strains. Collectively, these changes represent a fundamental gap in the literature on A. hydrophila and confirm the necessity of biochemical, molecular, and morphological techniques in the classification of research strains that are used as a foundation for future research. This review revisits what is known about virulence in A. hydrophila and the feasibility of using comparative genomics in light of this phylogenetic revision. Conflicting data between virulence factors, secretion systems, quorum sensing, and their effect on A. hydrophila pathogenicity appears to be an artifact of inappropriate taxonomic comparisons and/or be due to the fact that these properties are strain-specific. This review audits emerging data on dominant virulence factors that are present in both A. dhakensis and A. hydrophila in order to synthesize existing data with the aim of locating where future research is needed.

  1. Identification of Pectin Degrading Enzymes Secreted by Xanthomonas oryzae pv. oryzae and Determination of Their Role in Virulence on Rice

    OpenAIRE

    Tayi, Lavanya; Maku, Roshan V.; Patel, Hitendra Kumar; Sonti, Ramesh V.

    2016-01-01

    Xanthomonas oryzae pv.oryzae (Xoo) causes the serious bacterial blight disease of rice. Xoo secretes a repertoire of plant cell wall degrading enzymes (CWDEs) like cellulases, xylanases, esterases etc., which act on various components of the rice cell wall. The major cellulases and xylanases secreted by Xoo have been identified and their role in virulence has been determined. In this study, we have identified some of the pectin degrading enzymes of Xoo and assessed their role in virulence. Bi...

  2. New insights into virulence mechanisms of rice pathogen Acidovorax avenae subsp. avenae strain RS-1 following exposure to ?-lactam antibiotics

    OpenAIRE

    Li, Bin; Ge, Mengyu; Zhang, Yang; Wang, Li; Ibrahim, Muhammad; Wang, Yanli; Sun, Guochang; Chen, Gongyou

    2016-01-01

    Recent research has shown that pathogen virulence can be altered by exposure to antibiotics, even when the growth rate is unaffected. Investigating this phenomenon provides new insights into understanding the virulence mechanisms of bacterial pathogens. This study investigates the phenotypic and transcriptomic responses of the rice pathogenic bacterium Acidovorax avenae subsp. avenae (Aaa) strain RS-1 to ?-lactam antibiotics especially Ampicillin (Amp). Our results indicate that exposure to A...

  3. Daily variations in pathogenic bacterial populations in a monsoon influenced tropical environment

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Khandeparker, L.; Anil, A.C.; Naik, S.D.; Gaonkar, C.C.

    and an assessment of the health of such an ecosystem benefits from high resolution observations. Virulent pathogenic Vibrio species are expected more frequently in tropical marine environments, since the virulence gene expression seems to increase at elevated... cells ml−1 (July 2009) to 5.9 x 107 cells ml−1 (February 2011) (Fig. 2b). Inter annual variations point out that the total bacterial abundance increased 5 from 2009 to 2011, while the viable bacterial numbers decreased. Complex physical, chemical...

  4. Gram-Negative Bacterial Sensors for Eukaryotic Signal Molecules

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Olivier Lesouhaitier

    2009-09-01

    Full Text Available Ample evidence exists showing that eukaryotic signal molecules synthesized and released by the host can activate the virulence of opportunistic pathogens. The sensitivity of prokaryotes to host signal molecules requires the presence of bacterial sensors. These prokaryotic sensors, or receptors, have a double function: stereospecific recognition in a complex environment and transduction of the message in order to initiate bacterial physiological modifications. As messengers are generally unable to freely cross the bacterial membrane, they require either the presence of sensors anchored in the membrane or transporters allowing direct recognition inside the bacterial cytoplasm. Since the discovery of quorum sensing, it was established that the production of virulence factors by bacteria is tightly growth-phase regulated. It is now obvious that expression of bacterial virulence is also controlled by detection of the eukaryotic messengers released in the micro-environment as endocrine or neuro-endocrine modulators. In the presence of host physiological stress many eukaryotic factors are released and detected by Gram-negative bacteria which in return rapidly adapt their physiology. For instance, Pseudomonas aeruginosa can bind elements of the host immune system such as interferon-γ and dynorphin and then through quorum sensing circuitry enhance its virulence. Escherichia coli sensitivity to the neurohormones of the catecholamines family appears relayed by a recently identified bacterial adrenergic receptor. In the present review, we will describe the mechanisms by which various eukaryotic signal molecules produced by host may activate Gram-negative bacteria virulence. Particular attention will be paid to Pseudomonas, a genus whose representative species, P. aeruginosa, is a common opportunistic pathogen. The discussion will be particularly focused on the pivotal role played by these new types of pathogen sensors from the sensing to the transduction

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sadia Bekal

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

  6. An investigation of virulence factors of Legionella pneumophila environmental isolates

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elif Özlem Arslan-Aydoğdu

    Full Text Available ABSTRACT Nine Legionella pneumophila strains isolated from cooling towers and a standard strain (L. pneumophila serogroup 1, ATCC 33152, Philadelphia 1 were analyzed and compared in terms of motility, flagella structure, ability to form biofilms, enzymatic activities (hemolysin, nucleases, protease, phospholipase A, phospholipase C, acid phosphatase, alkaline phosphatase and lipase, hemagglutination capabilities, and pathogenicity in various host cells (Acanthamoeba castellanii ATCC 30234, mouse peritoneal macrophages and human peripheral monocytes. All the isolates of bacteria appeared to be motile and polar-flagellated and possessed the type-IV fimbria. Upon the evaluation of virulence factors, isolate 4 was found to be the most pathogenic strain, while 6 out of the 9 isolates (the isolates 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, and 7 were more virulent than the ATCC 33152 strain. The different bacterial strains exhibited differences in properties such as adhesion, penetration and reproduction in the hosts, and preferred host type. To our knowledge, this is the first study to compare the virulence of environmental L. pneumophila strains isolated in Turkey, and it provides important information relevant for understanding the epidemiology of L. pneumophila.

  7. From the Outside-In: the Francisella tularensis Envelope and Virulence

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hannah M. Rowe

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available Francisella tularensis is a highly-infectious bacterium that causes the rapid, and often lethal disease, tularemia. Many studies have been performed to identify and characterize the virulence factors that F. tularensis uses to infect a wide variety of hosts and host cell types, evade immune defenses, and induce severe disease and death. This review focuses on the virulence factors that are present in the F. tularensis envelope, including capsule, LPS, outer membrane, periplasm, inner membrane, secretion systems, and various molecules in each of aforementioned sub-compartments. Whereas no single bacterial molecule or molecular complex single-handedly controls F. tularensis virulence, we review here how diverse bacterial systems work in conjunction to subvert the immune system, attach to and invade host cells, alter phagosome/lysosome maturation pathways, replicate in host cells without being detected, inhibit apoptosis, and induce host cell death for bacterial release and infection of adjacent cells. Given that the F. tularensis envelope is the outermost layer of the bacterium, we highlight herein how many of these molecules directly interact with the host to promote infection and disease. These and future envelope studies are important to advance our collective understanding of F. tularensis virulence mechanisms and offer targets for future vaccine development efforts.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    de Rochefort Anna

    2009-10-01

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

  9. Virulence determinants of Moraxella catarrhalis: distribution and considerations for vaccine development.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blakeway, Luke V; Tan, Aimee; Peak, Ian R A; Seib, Kate L

    2017-10-01

    Moraxella catarrhalis is a human-restricted opportunistic bacterial pathogen of the respiratory mucosa. It frequently colonizes the nasopharynx asymptomatically, but is also an important causative agent of otitis media (OM) in children, and plays a significant role in acute exacerbations of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) in adults. As the current treatment options for M. catarrhalis infection in OM and exacerbations of COPD are often ineffective, the development of an efficacious vaccine is warranted. However, no vaccine candidates for M. catarrhalis have progressed to clinical trials, and information regarding the distribution of M. catarrhalis virulence factors and vaccine candidates is inconsistent in the literature. It is largely unknown if virulence is associated with particular strains or subpopulations of M. catarrhalis, or if differences in clinical manifestation can be attributed to the heterogeneous expression of specific M. catarrhalis virulence factors in the circulating population. Further investigation of the distribution of M. catarrhalis virulence factors in the context of carriage and disease is required so that vaccine development may be targeted at relevant antigens that are conserved among disease-causing strains. The challenge of determining which of the proposed M. catarrhalis virulence factors are relevant to human disease is amplified by the lack of a standardized M. catarrhalis typing system to facilitate direct comparisons of worldwide isolates. Here we summarize and evaluate proposed relationships between M. catarrhalis subpopulations and specific virulence factors in the context of colonization and disease, as well as the current methods used to infer these associations.

  10. Bacterial Infection of Fly Ovaries Reduces Egg Production and Induces Local Hemocyte Activation

    OpenAIRE

    Brandt, Stephanie M.; Schneider, David S.

    2007-01-01

    Morbidity, the state of being diseased, is an important aspect of pathogenesis that has gone relatively unstudied in fruit flies. Our interest is in characterizing how bacterial pathogenesis affects various physiologies of the fly. We chose to examine the fly ovary because we found bacterial infection had a striking effect on fly reproduction. We observed decreased egg laying after bacterial infection that correlated with increased bacterial virulence. We also found that bacteria colonized th...

  11. Metabolic Genetic Screens Reveal Multidimensional Regulation of Virulence Gene Expression in Listeria monocytogenes and an Aminopeptidase That Is Critical for PrfA Protein Activation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Friedman, Sivan; Linsky, Marika; Lobel, Lior; Rabinovich, Lev; Sigal, Nadejda; Herskovits, Anat A

    2017-06-01

    Listeria monocytogenes is an environmental saprophyte and intracellular bacterial pathogen. Upon invading mammalian cells, the bacterium senses abrupt changes in its metabolic environment, which are rapidly transduced to regulation of virulence gene expression. To explore the relationship between L. monocytogenes metabolism and virulence, we monitored virulence gene expression dynamics across a library of genetic mutants grown under two metabolic conditions known to activate the virulent state: charcoal-treated rich medium containing glucose-1-phosphate and minimal defined medium containing limiting concentrations of branched-chain amino acids (BCAAs). We identified over 100 distinct mutants that exhibit aberrant virulence gene expression profiles, the majority of which mapped to nonessential metabolic genes. Mutants displayed enhanced, decreased, and early and late virulence gene expression profiles, as well as persistent levels, demonstrating a high plasticity in virulence gene regulation. Among the mutants, one was noteworthy for its particularly low virulence gene expression level and mapped to an X-prolyl aminopeptidase (PepP). We show that this peptidase plays a role in posttranslational activation of the major virulence regulator, PrfA. Specifically, PepP mediates recruitment of PrfA to the cytoplasmic membrane, a step identified as critical for PrfA protein activation. This study establishes a novel step in the complex mechanism of PrfA activation and further highlights the cross regulation of metabolism and virulence. Copyright © 2017 American Society for Microbiology.

  12. The animal model determines the results of Aeromonas virulence factors

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alejandro Romero

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available The selection of an experimental animal model is of great importance in the study of bacterial virulence factors. Here, a bath infection of zebrafish larvae is proposed as an alternative model to study the virulence factors of A. hydrophila. Intraperitoneal infections in mice and trout were compared with bath infections in zebrafish larvae using specific mutants. The great advantage of this model is that bath immersion mimics the natural route of infection, and injury to the tail also provides a natural portal of entry for the bacteria. The implication of T3SS in the virulence of A. hydrophila was analysed using the AH-1::aopB mutant. This mutant was less virulent than the wild-type strain when inoculated into zebrafish larvae, as described in other vertebrates. However, the zebrafish model exhibited slight differences in mortality kinetics only observed using invertebrate models. Infections using the mutant AH-1∆vapA lacking the gene coding for the surface S-layer suggested that this protein was not totally necessary to the bacteria once it was inside the host, but it contributed to the inflammatory response. Only when healthy zebrafish larvae were infected did the mutant produce less mortality than the wild type. Variations between models were evidenced using the AH-1∆rmlB, which lacks the O-antigen lipopolysaccharide (LPS, and the AH-1∆wahD, which lacks the O-antigen LPS and part of the LPS outer-core. Both mutants showed decreased mortality in all of the animal models, but the differences between them were only observed in injured zebrafish larvae, suggesting that residues from the LPS outer core must be important for virulence. The greatest differences were observed using the AH-1ΔFlaB-J (lacking polar flagella and unable to swim and the AH-1::motX (non-motile but producing flagella. They were as pathogenic as the wild-type strain when injected into mice and trout, but no mortalities were registered in zebrafish larvae. This study

  13. Comparative genomics of Beauveria bassiana: uncovering signatures of virulence against mosquitoes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Valero-Jiménez, Claudio A; Faino, Luigi; Spring In't Veld, Daphne; Smit, Sandra; Zwaan, Bas J; van Kan, Jan A L

    2016-12-01

    Entomopathogenic fungi such as Beauveria bassiana are promising biological agents for control of malaria mosquitoes. Indeed, infection with B. bassiana reduces the lifespan of mosquitoes in the laboratory and in the field. Natural isolates of B. bassiana show up to 10-fold differences in virulence between the most and the least virulent isolate. In this study, we sequenced the genomes of five isolates representing the extremes of low/high virulence and three RNA libraries, and applied a genome comparison approach to uncover genetic mechanisms underpinning virulence. A high-quality, near-complete genome assembly was achieved for the highly virulent isolate Bb8028, which was compared to the assemblies of the four other isolates. Whole genome analysis showed a high level of genetic diversity between the five isolates (2.85-16.8 SNPs/kb), which grouped into two distinct phylogenetic clusters. Mating type gene analysis revealed the presence of either the MAT1-1-1 or the MAT1-2-1 gene. Moreover, a putative new MAT gene (MAT1-2-8) was detected in the MAT1-2 locus. Comparative genome analysis revealed that Bb8028 contains 163 genes exclusive for this isolate. These unique genes have a tendency to cluster in the genome and to be often located near the telomeres. Among the genes unique to Bb8028 are a Non-Ribosomal Peptide Synthetase (NRPS) secondary metabolite gene cluster, a polyketide synthase (PKS) gene, and five genes with homology to bacterial toxins. A survey of candidate virulence genes for B. bassiana is presented. Our results indicate several genes and molecular processes that may underpin virulence towards mosquitoes. Thus, the genome sequences of five isolates of B. bassiana provide a better understanding of the natural variation in virulence and will offer a major resource for future research on this important biological control agent.

  14. Virulence differences among Francisella tularensis subsp. tularensis clades in mice.

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    Claudia R Molins

    Full Text Available Francisella tularensis subspecies tularensis (type A and holarctica (type B are of clinical importance in causing tularemia. Molecular typing methods have further separated type A strains into three genetically distinct clades, A1a, A1b and A2. Epidemiological analyses of human infections in the United States suggest that A1b infections are associated with a significantly higher mortality rate as compared to infections caused by A1a, A2 and type B. To determine if genetic differences as defined by molecular typing directly correlate with differences in virulence, A1a, A1b, A2 and type B strains were compared in C57BL/6 mice. Here we demonstrate significant differences between survival curves for infections caused by A1b versus A1a, A2 and type B, with A1b infected mice dying earlier than mice infected with A1a, A2 or type B; these results were conserved among multiple strains. Differences were also detected among type A clades as well as between type A clades and type B with respect to bacterial burdens, and gross anatomy in infected mice. Our results indicate that clades defined within F. tularensis subsp. tularensis by molecular typing methods correlate with virulence differences, with A1b strains more virulent than A1a, A2 and type B strains. These findings indicate type A strains are not equivalent with respect to virulence and have important implications for public health as well as basic research programs.

  15. Phosphotyrosine-Mediated Regulation of Enterohemorrhagic Escherichia coli Virulence

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2018-01-01

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

  16. Phosphotyrosine-Mediated Regulation of Enterohemorrhagic Escherichia coli Virulence

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Colin D. Robertson

    2018-02-01

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

  17. Bacterial prostatitis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gill, Bradley C; Shoskes, Daniel A

    2016-02-01

    The review provides the infectious disease community with a urologic perspective on bacterial prostatitis. Specifically, the article briefly reviews the categorization of prostatitis by type and provides a distillation of new findings published on bacterial prostatitis over the past year. It also highlights key points from the established literature. Cross-sectional prostate imaging is becoming more common and may lead to more incidental diagnoses of acute bacterial prostatitis. As drug resistance remains problematic in this condition, the reemergence of older antibiotics such as fosfomycin, has proven beneficial. With regard to chronic bacterial prostatitis, no clear clinical risk factors emerged in a large epidemiological study. However, bacterial biofilm formation has been associated with more severe cases. Surgery has a limited role in bacterial prostatitis and should be reserved for draining of a prostatic abscess or the removal of infected prostatic stones. Prostatitis remains a common and bothersome clinical condition. Antibiotic therapy remains the basis of treatment for both acute and chronic bacterial prostatitis. Further research into improving prostatitis treatment is indicated.

  18. Molecular mechanisms of action of bacterial exotoxins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Balfanz, J; Rautenberg, P; Ullmann, U

    1996-07-01

    Toxins are one of the inventive strategies that bacteria have developed in order to survive. As virulence factors, they play a major role in the pathogenesis of infectious diseases. Recent discoveries have once more highlighted the effectiveness of these precisely adjusted bacterial weapons. Furthermore, toxins have become an invaluable tool in the investigation of fundamental cell processes, including regulation of cellular functions by various G proteins, cytoskeletal dynamics and neural transmission. In this review, the bacterial toxins are presented in a rational classification based on the molecular mechanisms of action.

  19. Bacterial Vaginosis

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... Archive STDs Home Page Bacterial Vaginosis (BV) Chlamydia Gonorrhea Genital Herpes Hepatitis HIV/AIDS & STDs Human Papillomavirus ( ... of getting other STDs, such as chlamydia and gonorrhea . These bacteria can sometimes cause pelvic inflammatory disease ( ...

  20. Bacterial strategies of resistance to antimicrobial peptides.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Joo, Hwang-Soo; Fu, Chih-Iung; Otto, Michael

    2016-05-26

    Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) are a key component of the host's innate immune system, targeting invasive and colonizing bacteria. For successful survival and colonization of the host, bacteria have a series of mechanisms to interfere with AMP activity, and AMP resistance is intimately connected with the virulence potential of bacterial pathogens. In particular, because AMPs are considered as potential novel antimicrobial drugs, it is vital to understand bacterial AMP resistance mechanisms. This review gives a comparative overview of Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacterial strategies of resistance to various AMPs, such as repulsion or sequestration by bacterial surface structures, alteration of membrane charge or fluidity, degradation and removal by efflux pumps.This article is part of the themed issue 'Evolutionary ecology of arthropod antimicrobial peptides'. © 2016 The Author(s).

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2018-01-01

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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Silja Åvall-Jääskeläinen

    2018-03-01

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

  3. Piper betle leaf extract affects the quorum sensing and hence virulence of Pseudomonas aeruginosa PAO1.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Datta, Siraj; Jana, Debanjan; Maity, Tilak Raj; Samanta, Aveek; Banerjee, Rajarshi

    2016-06-01

    Quorum sensing (QS) plays an important role in virulence of Pseudomonas aeruginosa, blocking of QS ability are viewed as viable antimicrobial chemotherapy and which may prove to be a safe anti-virulent drug. Bioactive components from Piper betle have been reported to possess antimicrobial ability. This study envisages on the anti-QS properties of ethanolic extract of P. betle leaf (PbLE) using P. aeruginosa PAO1 as a model organism. A marked reduction in swarming, swimming, and twitching ability of the bacteria is demonstrated in presence of PbLE. The biofilm and pyocyanin production also shows a marked reduction in presence of PbLE, though it does not affect the bacterial growth. Thus, the studies hint on the possible effect of the bioactive components of PbLE on reducing the virulent ability of the bacteria; identification of bioactive compounds should be investigated further.

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

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

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

    2007-10-01

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

  5. Ecto-5'-nucleotidase: a candidate virulence factor in Streptococcus sanguinis experimental endocarditis.

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    Jingyuan Fan

    Full Text Available Streptococcus sanguinis is the most common cause of infective endocarditis (IE. Since the molecular basis of virulence of this oral commensal bacterium remains unclear, we searched the genome of S. sanguinis for previously unidentified virulence factors. We identified a cell surface ecto-5'-nucleotidase (Nt5e, as a candidate virulence factor. By colorimetric phosphate assay, we showed that S. sanguinis Nt5e can hydrolyze extracellular adenosine triphosphate to generate adenosine. Moreover, a nt5e deletion mutant showed significantly shorter lag time (P<0.05 to onset of platelet aggregation than the wild-type strain, without affecting platelet-bacterial adhesion in vitro (P=0.98. In the absence of nt5e, S. sanguinis caused IE (4 d in a rabbit model with significantly decreased mass of vegetations (P<0.01 and recovered bacterial loads (log(10CFU, P=0.01, suggesting that Nt5e contributes to the virulence of S. sanguinis in vivo. As a virulence factor, Nt5e may function by (i hydrolyzing ATP, a pro-inflammatory molecule, and generating adenosine, an immunosuppressive molecule to inhibit phagocytic monocytes/macrophages associated with valvular vegetations. (ii Nt5e-mediated inhibition of platelet aggregation could also delay presentation of platelet microbicidal proteins to infecting bacteria on heart valves. Both plausible Nt5e-dependent mechanisms would promote survival of infecting S. sanguinis. In conclusion, we now show for the first time that streptococcal Nt5e modulates S. sanguinis-induced platelet aggregation and may contribute to the virulence of streptococci in experimental IE.

  6. Bistable expression of virulence genes in salmonella leads to the formation of an antibiotic-tolerant subpopulation.

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    Markus Arnoldini

    2014-08-01

    Full Text Available Phenotypic heterogeneity can confer clonal groups of organisms with new functionality. A paradigmatic example is the bistable expression of virulence genes in Salmonella typhimurium, which leads to phenotypically virulent and phenotypically avirulent subpopulations. The two subpopulations have been shown to divide labor during S. typhimurium infections. Here, we show that heterogeneous virulence gene expression in this organism also promotes survival against exposure to antibiotics through a bet-hedging mechanism. Using microfluidic devices in combination with fluorescence time-lapse microscopy and quantitative image analysis, we analyzed the expression of virulence genes at the single cell level and related it to survival when exposed to antibiotics. We found that, across different types of antibiotics and under concentrations that are clinically relevant, the subpopulation of bacterial cells that express virulence genes shows increased survival after exposure to antibiotics. Intriguingly, there is an interplay between the two consequences of phenotypic heterogeneity. The bet-hedging effect that arises through heterogeneity in virulence gene expression can protect clonal populations against avirulent mutants that exploit and subvert the division of labor within these populations. We conclude that bet-hedging and the division of labor can arise through variation in a single trait and interact with each other. This reveals a new degree of functional complexity of phenotypic heterogeneity. In addition, our results suggest a general principle of how pathogens can evade antibiotics: Expression of virulence factors often entails metabolic costs and the resulting growth retardation could generally increase tolerance against antibiotics and thus compromise treatment.

  7. Molecular serotyping, virulence gene profiling and pathogenicity of Streptococcus agalactiae isolated from tilapia farms in Thailand by multiplex PCR.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kannika, K; Pisuttharachai, D; Srisapoome, P; Wongtavatchai, J; Kondo, H; Hirono, I; Unajak, S; Areechon, N

    2017-06-01

    This study aimed to biotype Streptococcus agalactiae isolated from tilapia farms in Thailand based on molecular biotyping methods and to determine the correlation between the serotype and virulence of bacteria. In addition to a biotyping (serotyping) technique based on multiplex PCR of cps genes, in this study, we developed multiplex PCR typing of Group B streptococcus (GBS) virulence genes to examine three clusters of virulence genes and their correlation with the pathogenicity of S. agalactiae. The epidemiology of S. agalactiae in Thailand was analysed to provide bacterial genetic information towards a future rational vaccine strategy for tilapia culture systems. Streptococcus agalactiae were isolated from diseased tilapia from different areas of Thailand. A total of 124 S. agalactiae isolates were identified by phenotypic analysis and confirmed by 16S rRNA PCR. Bacterial genotyping was conducted based on (i) molecular serotyping of the capsular polysaccharide (cps) gene cluster and (ii) virulence gene profiling using multiplex PCR analysis of 14 virulence genes (lmb, scpB, pavA, cspA, spb1, cyl, bca, rib, fbsA, fbsB, cfb, hylB, bac and pbp1A/ponA). Only serotypes Ia and III were found in this study; serotype Ia lacks the lmb, scpB and spb1 genes, whereas serotype III lacks only the bac gene. Virulence tests in juvenile Nile tilapia demonstrated a correlation between the pathogenicity of the bacteria and their virulence gene profile, with serotype III showing higher virulence than serotype Ia. Epidemiological analysis showed an almost equal distribution in all regions of Thailand, except serotype III was found predominantly in the southern areas. Only two serotypes of S. agalactiae were isolated from diseased tilapia in Thailand. Serotype Ia showed fewer virulence genes and lower virulence than serotype III. Both serotypes showed a similar distribution throughout Thailand. We identified two major serotypes of S. agalactiae isolates associated with the outbreak in

  8. Capsule shields the function of short bacterial adhesins

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Schembri, Mark; Dalsgaard, D.; Klemm, Per

    2004-01-01

    Bacterial surface structures such as capsules and adhesins are generally regarded as important virulence factors. Here we demonstrate that capsules block the function of the self-recognizing protein antigen 43 through physical shielding. The phenomenon is not restricted to Escherichia coli but can...

  9. Virulence of Pseudomonas syringae pv. tomato DC3000 is modulated through the Catabolite Repression Control protein Crc

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pseudomonas syringae (P.s.) infects diverse plant species and several P.s. pathovars have been used in the study of molecular events that occur during plant-microbe interactions. Although the relationship between bacterial metabolism, nutrient acquisition and virulence has attracted increasing atten...

  10. A virulent parent with probiotic progeny: comparative genomics of Escherichia coli strains CFT073, Nissle 1917 and ABU 83972

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Vejborg, Rebecca Munk; Friis, Carsten; Hancock, Viktoria

    2010-01-01

    Escherichia coli is a highly versatile species encompassing a diverse spectrum of strains, i.e. from highly virulent isolates causing serious infectious diseases to commensals and probiotic strains. Although much is known about bacterial pathogenicity in E. coli, the understanding of which geneti...

  11. Evolution and Virulence of Influenza A Virus Protein PB1-F2

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ram P. Kamal

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available PB1-F2 is an accessory protein of most human, avian, swine, equine, and canine influenza A viruses (IAVs. Although it is dispensable for virus replication and growth, it plays significant roles in pathogenesis by interfering with the host innate immune response, inducing death in immune and epithelial cells, altering inflammatory responses, and promoting secondary bacterial pneumonia. The effects of PB1-F2 differ between virus strains and host species. This can at least partially be explained by the presence of multiple PB1-F2 sequence variants, including premature stop codons that lead to the expression of truncated PB1-F2 proteins of different lengths and specific virulence-associated residues that enhance susceptibility to bacterial superinfection. Although there has been a tendency for human seasonal IAV to gradually reduce the number of virulence-associated residues, zoonotic IAVs contain a reservoir of PB1-F2 proteins with full length, virulence-associated sequences. Here, we review the molecular mechanisms by which PB1-F2 may affect influenza virulence, and factors associated with the evolution and selection of this protein.

  12. Anaerobiosis induced virulence of Salmonella typhi

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

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

    2002-01-01

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

  13. Evolution of viral virulence: empirical studies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kurath, Gael; Wargo, Andrew R.

    2016-01-01

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

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

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Dr DADIE Thomas

    2014-02-17

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

  15. Decrease of Staphylococcus aureus Virulence by Helcococcus kunzii in a Caenorhabditis elegans Model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ngba Essebe, Christelle; Visvikis, Orane; Fines-Guyon, Marguerite; Vergne, Anne; Cattoir, Vincent; Lecoustumier, Alain; Lemichez, Emmanuel; Sotto, Albert; Lavigne, Jean-Philippe; Dunyach-Remy, Catherine

    2017-01-01

    Social bacterial interactions are considered essential in numerous infectious diseases, particularly in wounds. Foot ulcers are a common complication in diabetic patients and these ulcers become frequently infected. This infection is usually polymicrobial promoting cell-to-cell communications. Staphylococcus aureus is the most prevalent pathogen isolated. Its association with Helcococcus kunzii , commensal Gram-positive cocci, is frequently described. The aim of this study was to assess the impact of co-infection on virulence of both H. kunzii and S. aureus strains in a Caenorhabditis elegans model. To study the host response, qRT-PCRs targeting host defense genes were performed. We observed that H. kunzii strains harbored a very low (LT50: 5.7 days ± 0.4) or an absence of virulence (LT50: 6.9 days ± 0.5). In contrast, S. aureus strains (LT50: 2.9 days ± 0.4) were significantly more virulent than all H. kunzii ( P aureus strains were associated, H. kunzii significantly reduced the virulence of the S. aureus strain in nematodes (LT50 between 4.4 and 5.2 days; P aureus led to a strong induction of defense genes ( lys-5, sodh-1 , and cyp-37B1 ) while H. kunzii did not. No statistical difference of host response genes expression was observed when C. elegans were infected with either S. aureus alone or with S. aureus + H. kunzii . Moreover, two well-characterized virulence factors ( hla and agr ) present in S. aureus were down-regulated when S. aureus were co-infected with H. kunzii . This study showed that H. kunzii decreased the virulence of S. aureus without modifying directly the host defense response. Factor(s) produced by this bacterium modulating the staphylococci virulence must be investigated.

  16. Feeding behaviour of Caenorhabditis elegans is an indicator of Pseudomonas aeruginosa PAO1 virulence

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shawn Lewenza

    2014-08-01

    Full Text Available Caenorhabditis elegans is commonly used as an infection model for pathogenesis studies in Pseudomonas aeruginosa. The standard virulence assays rely on the slow and fast killing or paralysis of nematodes but here we developed a behaviour assay to monitor the preferred bacterial food sources of C. elegans. We monitored the food preferences of nematodes fed the wild type PAO1 and mutants in the type III secretion (T3S system, which is a conserved mechanism to inject secreted effectors into the host cell cytosol. A ΔexsEΔpscD mutant defective for type III secretion served as a preferred food source, while an ΔexsE mutant that overexpresses the T3S effectors was avoided. Both food sources were ingested and observed in the gastrointestinal tract. Using the slow killing assay, we showed that the ΔexsEΔpscD had reduced virulence and thus confirmed that preferred food sources are less virulent than the wild type. Next we developed a high throughput feeding behaviour assay with 48 possible food colonies in order to screen a transposon mutant library and identify potential virulence genes. C. elegans identified and consumed preferred food colonies from a grid of 48 choices. The mutants identified as preferred food sources included known virulence genes, as well as novel genes not identified in previous C. elegans infection studies. Slow killing assays were performed and confirmed that several preferred food sources also showed reduced virulence. We propose that C. elegans feeding behaviour can be used as a sensitive indicator of virulence for P. aeruginosa PAO1.

  17. Virulence Genes Profile of Multidrug Resistant Pseudomonas aeruginosa Isolated from Iranian Children with UTIs

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    Zohreh Heidary

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available Virulent and resistant strains Pseudomonas aeruginosa (P. aeruginosa is one of the most important cause of UTIs in pediatrics. The present study was carried to investigate the frequency of virulence factors in the multi-drug resistant strains of P. aeruginosa isolated from pediatrics hospitalized due to the UTIs. One - hundred and forty three urine samples were collected from pediatric patients suffered from UTIs. Samples were cultured and those that were P. aeruginosa positive were analyzed for the presence of putative virulence genes. Seventy one out of 143 samples (49.65% were positive for P. aeruginosa. Monthly, sex and age-dependent prevalence were seen for P. aeruginosa. Bacterial strains had the highest levels of resistance against ampicillin (95.77%, gentamicin (92.95% and ciprofloxacin (81.69%. Of 71 P. aeruginosa isolates, 12 strains were resistant to more than 9 antibiotics (16.90%. The most commonly detected virulence factors in the cases of urethral infections were exoU and plcH while those of pyelonephritis and cystitis were were exoS and lasB. Our findings should raise awareness about antibiotic resistance in hospitalized pediatrics with UTIs in Iran. Clinicians should exercise caution in prescribing antibiotics, especially in cases of UTIs. Such information can help in identifying these virulence genes as useful diagnostic markers for clinical P. aeruginosa strains isolated from UTIs.

  18. Integrative genomic analysis identifies isoleucine and CodY as regulators of Listeria monocytogenes virulence.

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    Lior Lobel

    2012-09-01

    Full Text Available Intracellular bacterial pathogens are metabolically adapted to grow within mammalian cells. While these adaptations are fundamental to the ability to cause disease, we know little about the relationship between the pathogen's metabolism and virulence. Here we used an integrative Metabolic Analysis Tool that combines transcriptome data with genome-scale metabolic models to define the metabolic requirements of Listeria monocytogenes during infection. Twelve metabolic pathways were identified as differentially active during L. monocytogenes growth in macrophage cells. Intracellular replication requires de novo synthesis of histidine, arginine, purine, and branch chain amino acids (BCAAs, as well as catabolism of L-rhamnose and glycerol. The importance of each metabolic pathway during infection was confirmed by generation of gene knockout mutants in the respective pathways. Next, we investigated the association of these metabolic requirements in the regulation of L. monocytogenes virulence. Here we show that limiting BCAA concentrations, primarily isoleucine, results in robust induction of the master virulence activator gene, prfA, and the PrfA-regulated genes. This response was specific and required the nutrient responsive regulator CodY, which is known to bind isoleucine. Further analysis demonstrated that CodY is involved in prfA regulation, playing a role in prfA activation under limiting conditions of BCAAs. This study evidences an additional regulatory mechanism underlying L. monocytogenes virulence, placing CodY at the crossroads of metabolism and virulence.

  19. Antimicrobial peptide GH12 suppresses cariogenic virulence factors of Streptococcus mutans

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Yufei; Wang, Xiuqing; Jiang, Wentao; Wang, Kun; Luo, Junyuan; Li, Wei; Zhou, Xuedong; Zhang, Linglin

    2018-01-01

    ABSTRACT Cariogenic virulence factors of Streptococcus mutans include acidogenicity, aciduricity, and extracellular polysaccharides (EPS) synthesis. The de novo designed antimicrobial peptide GH12 has shown bactericidal effects on S. mutans, but its interaction with virulence and regulatory systems of S. mutans remains to be elucidated. The objectives were to investigate the effects of GH12 on virulence factors of S. mutans, and further explore the function mechanisms at enzymatic and transcriptional levels. To avoid decrease in bacterial viability, we limited GH12 to subinhibitory levels. We evaluated effects of GH12 on acidogenicity of S. mutans by pH drop, lactic acid measurement and lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) assay, on aciduricity through survival rate at pH 5.0 and F1F0-ATPase assay, and on EPS synthesis using quantitative measurement, morphology observation, vertical distribution analyses and biomass calculation. Afterwards, we conducted quantitative real-time PCR to acquire the expression profile of related genes. GH12 at 1/2 MIC (4 mg/L) inhibited acid production, survival rate, EPS synthesis, and biofilm formation. The enzymatic activity of LDH and F1F0-ATPase was inhibited, and ldh, gtfBCD, vicR, liaR, and comDE genes were significantly downregulated. In conclusion, GH12 inhibited virulence factors of S. mutans, through reducing the activity of related enzymes, downregulating virulence genes, and inactivating specific regulatory systems. PMID:29503706

  20. Common Virulence Factors and Tissue Targets of Entomopathogenic Bacteria for Biological Control of Lepidopteran Pests

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anaïs Castagnola

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available This review focuses on common insecticidal virulence factors from entomopathogenic bacteria with special emphasis on two insect pathogenic bacteria Photorhabdus (Proteobacteria: Enterobacteriaceae and Bacillus (Firmicutes: Bacillaceae. Insect pathogenic bacteria of diverse taxonomic groups and phylogenetic origin have been shown to have striking similarities in the virulence factors they produce. It has been suggested that the detection of phage elements surrounding toxin genes, horizontal and lateral gene transfer events, and plasmid shuffling occurrences may be some of the reasons that virulence factor genes have so many analogs throughout the bacterial kingdom. Comparison of virulence factors of Photorhabdus, and Bacillus, two bacteria with dissimilar life styles opens the possibility of re-examining newly discovered toxins for novel tissue targets. For example, nematodes residing in the hemolymph may release bacteria with virulence factors targeting neurons or neuromuscular junctions. The first section of this review focuses on toxins and their context in agriculture. The second describes the mode of action of toxins from common entomopathogens and the third draws comparisons between Gram positive and Gram negative bacteria. The fourth section reviews the implications of the nervous system in biocontrol.

  1. Cholesterol oxidase (ChoE) is not important in the virulence of Rhodococcus equi.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pei, Yanlong; Dupont, Chris; Sydor, Tobias; Haas, Albert; Prescott, John F

    2006-12-20

    To analyze further the role in virulence of the prominent cholesterol oxidase (ChoE) of Rhodococcus equi, an allelic exchange choE mutant from strain 103+ was constructed and assessed for virulence in macrophages, in mice, and in foals. There was no difference between the mutant and parent strain in cytotoxic activity for macrophages or in intra-macrophage multiplication. No evidence of attenuation was obtained in macrophages and in mice, but there was slight attenuation apparent in four intra-bronchially infected foals compared to infection of four foals with the virulent parent strain, based on a delayed rise in temperature of the choE-mutant infected foals. However, bacterial colony counts in the lung 2 weeks after infection were not significantly different, although there was a slight but non-significant (P=0.12) difference in lung:body weight ratio of the choE mutant versus virulent parent infected foals (mean 2.67+/-0.25% compared to 4.58+/-0.96%). We conclude that the cholesterol oxidase is not important for the virulence of R. equi.

  2. BACTERIAL CONSORTIUM

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Payel Sarkar

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Petroleum aromatic hydrocarbons like benzen e, toluene, ethyl benzene and xylene, together known as BTEX, has almost the same chemical structure. These aromatic hydrocarbons are released as pollutants in th e environment. This work was taken up to develop a solvent tolerant bacterial cons ortium that could degrade BTEX compounds as they all share a common chemical structure. We have isolated almost 60 different types of bacterial strains from different petroleum contaminated sites. Of these 60 bacterial strains almost 20 microorganisms were screene d on the basis of capability to tolerate high concentration of BTEX. Ten differe nt consortia were prepared and the compatibility of the bacterial strains within the consortia was checked by gram staining and BTEX tolerance level. Four successful mi crobial consortia were selected in which all the bacterial strains concomitantly grew in presence of high concentration of BTEX (10% of toluene, 10% of benzene 5% ethyl benzene and 1% xylene. Consortium #2 showed the highest growth rate in pr esence of BTEX. Degradation of BTEX by consortium #2 was monitored for 5 days by gradual decrease in the volume of the solvents. The maximum reduction observed wa s 85% in 5 days. Gas chromatography results also reveal that could completely degrade benzene and ethyl benzene within 48 hours. Almost 90% degradation of toluene and xylene in 48 hours was exhibited by consortium #2. It could also tolerate and degrade many industrial solvents such as chloroform, DMSO, acetonitrile having a wide range of log P values (0.03–3.1. Degradation of aromatic hydrocarbon like BTEX by a solvent tolerant bacterial consortium is greatly significant as it could degrade high concentration of pollutants compared to a bacterium and also reduces the time span of degradation.

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

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

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

    2017-01-01

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

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

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

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

  5. C. elegans as a virulence model for E. coli strain 042

    OpenAIRE

    Kjærbo, Rasmus E. R.; Godballe, Troels; Hansen, Klaus G.; Petersen, Pernille D.; Tikander, Emil

    2010-01-01

    During the last decade the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans has been used to model the pathogenesis of several bacterial species. The emerging pathogen enteroaggregative Escherichia coli (EAEC) is a considerable cause of both acute and persistent diarrhea worldwide. Travellers to developing countries, immunocompromised people and young children are high-risk groups prone to infection. Virulence models using C. elegans might provide valuable information about the host-pathogen interactions whic...

  6. Virulence factors in Proteus bacteria from biofilm communities of catheter-associated urinary tract infections.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hola, Veronika; Peroutkova, Tereza; Ruzicka, Filip

    2012-07-01

    More than 40% of nosocomial infections are those of the urinary tract, most of these occurring in catheterized patients. Bacterial colonization of the urinary tract and catheters results not only in infection, but also various complications, such as blockage of catheters with crystalline deposits of bacterial origin, generation of gravels and pyelonephritis. The diversity of the biofilm microbial community increases with duration of catheter emplacement. One of the most important pathogens in this regard is Proteus mirabilis. The aims of this study were to identify and assess particular virulence factors present in catheter-associated urinary tract infection (CAUTI) isolates, their correlation and linkages: three types of motility (swarming, swimming and twitching), the ability to swarm over urinary catheters, biofilm production in two types of media, urease production and adherence of bacterial cells to various types of urinary tract catheters. We examined 102 CAUTI isolates and 50 isolates taken from stool samples of healthy people. Among the microorganisms isolated from urinary catheters, significant differences were found in biofilm-forming ability and the swarming motility. In comparison with the control group, the microorganisms isolated from urinary catheters showed a wider spectrum of virulence factors. The virulence factors (twitching motility, swimming motility, swarming over various types of catheters and biofilm formation) were also more intensively expressed. © 2012 Federation of European Microbiological Societies. Published by Blackwell Publishing Ltd. All rights reserved.

  7. Bacterial Adhesion & Blocking Bacterial Adhesion

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Vejborg, Rebecca Munk

    2008-01-01

    , which influence the transition from a planktonic lifestyle to a sessile lifestyle, have been studied. Protein conditioning film formation was found to influence bacterial adhesion and subsequent biofilm formation considerable, and an aqueous extract of fish muscle tissue was shown to significantly...... tract to the microbial flocs in waste water treatment facilities. Microbial biofilms may however also cause a wide range of industrial and medical problems, and have been implicated in a wide range of persistent infectious diseases, including implantassociated microbial infections. Bacterial adhesion...... is the first committing step in biofilm formation, and has therefore been intensely scrutinized. Much however, still remains elusive. Bacterial adhesion is a highly complex process, which is influenced by a variety of factors. In this thesis, a range of physico-chemical, molecular and environmental parameters...

  8. Bacterial meningitis

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Heckenberg, Sebastiaan G. B.; Brouwer, Matthijs C.; van de Beek, Diederik

    2014-01-01

    Bacterial meningitis is a neurologic emergency. Vaccination against common pathogens has decreased the burden of disease. Early diagnosis and rapid initiation of empiric antimicrobial and adjunctive therapy are vital. Therapy should be initiated as soon as blood cultures have been obtained,

  9. Bacterial lipases

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Jaeger, Karl-Erich; Ransac, Stéphane; Dijkstra, Bauke W.; Colson, Charles; Heuvel, Margreet van; Misset, Onno

    Many different bacterial species produce lipases which hydrolyze esters of glycerol with preferably long-chain fatty acids. They act at the interface generated by a hydrophobic lipid substrate in a hydrophilic aqueous medium. A characteristic property of lipases is called interfacial activation,

  10. Bacterial stress

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    First page Back Continue Last page Graphics. Bacterial stress. Physicochemical and chemical parameters: temperature, pressure, pH, salt concentration, oxygen, irradiation. Nutritional depravation: nutrient starvation, water shortage. Toxic compounds: Antibiotics, heavy metals, toxins, mutagens. Interactions with other cells: ...

  11. Differential interactions of virulent and non-virulent H. parasuis strains with naïve or swine influenza virus pre-infected dendritic cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mussá, Tufária; Rodríguez-Cariño, Carolina; Sánchez-Chardi, Alejandro; Baratelli, Massimiliano; Costa-Hurtado, Mar; Fraile, Lorenzo; Domínguez, Javier; Aragon, Virginia; Montoya, María

    2012-11-16

    Pigs possess a microbiota in the upper respiratory tract that includes Haemophilus parasuis. Pigs are also considered the reservoir of influenza viruses and infection with this virus commonly results in increased impact of bacterial infections, including those by H. parasuis. However, the mechanisms involved in host innate responses towards H. parasuis and their implications in a co-infection with influenza virus are unknown. Therefore, the ability of a non-virulent H. parasuis serovar 3 (SW114) and a virulent serovar 5 (Nagasaki) strains to interact with porcine bone marrow dendritic cells (poBMDC) and their modulation in a co-infection with swine influenza virus (SwIV) H3N2 was examined. At 1 hour post infection (hpi), SW114 interaction with poBMDC was higher than that of Nagasaki, while at 8 hpi both strains showed similar levels of interaction. The co-infection with H3N2 SwIV and either SW114 or Nagasaki induced higher levels of IL-1β, TNF-α, IL-6, IL-12 and IL-10 compared to mock or H3N2 SwIV infection alone. Moreover, IL-12 and IFN-α secretion differentially increased in cells co-infected with H3N2 SwIV and Nagasaki. These results pave the way for understanding the differences in the interaction of non-virulent and virulent strains of H. parasuis with the swine immune system and their modulation in a viral co-infection.

  12. The success of acinetobacter species; genetic, metabolic and virulence attributes.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anton Y Peleg

    Full Text Available An understanding of why certain Acinetobacter species are more successful in causing nosocomial infections, transmission and epidemic spread in healthcare institutions compared with other species is lacking. We used genomic, phenotypic and virulence studies to identify differences between Acinetobacter species. Fourteen strains representing nine species were examined. Genomic analysis of six strains showed that the A. baumannii core genome contains many genes important for diverse metabolism and survival in the host. Most of the A. baumannii core genes were also present in one or more of the less clinically successful species. In contrast, when the accessory genome of an individual A. baumannii strain was compared to a strain of a less successful species (A. calcoaceticus RUH2202, many operons with putative virulence function were found to be present only in the A. baumannii strain, including the csu operon, the acinetobactin chromosomal cluster, and bacterial defence mechanisms. Phenotype microarray analysis showed that compared to A. calcoaceticus (RUH2202, A. baumannii ATCC 19606(T was able to utilise nitrogen sources more effectively and was more tolerant to pH, osmotic and antimicrobial stress. Virulence differences were also observed, with A. baumannii ATCC 19606(T, A. pittii SH024, and A. nosocomialis RUH2624 persisting and forming larger biofilms on human skin than A. calcoaceticus. A. baumannii ATCC 19606(T and A. pittii SH024 were also able to survive in a murine thigh infection model, whereas the other two species were eradicated. The current study provides important insights into the elucidation of differences in clinical relevance among Acinetobacter species.

  13. The Success of Acinetobacter Species; Genetic, Metabolic and Virulence Attributes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peleg, Anton Y.; de Breij, Anna; Adams, Mark D.; Cerqueira, Gustavo M.; Mocali, Stefano; Galardini, Marco; Nibbering, Peter H.; Earl, Ashlee M.; Ward, Doyle V.; Paterson, David L.; Seifert, Harald; Dijkshoorn, Lenie

    2012-01-01

    An understanding of why certain Acinetobacter species are more successful in causing nosocomial infections, transmission and epidemic spread in healthcare institutions compared with other species is lacking. We used genomic, phenotypic and virulence studies to identify differences between Acinetobacter species. Fourteen strains representing nine species were examined. Genomic analysis of six strains showed that the A. baumannii core genome contains many genes important for diverse metabolism and survival in the host. Most of the A. baumannii core genes were also present in one or more of the less clinically successful species. In contrast, when the accessory genome of an individual A. baumannii strain was compared to a strain of a less successful species (A. calcoaceticus RUH2202), many operons with putative virulence function were found to be present only in the A. baumannii strain, including the csu operon, the acinetobactin chromosomal cluster, and bacterial defence mechanisms. Phenotype microarray analysis showed that compared to A. calcoaceticus (RUH2202), A. baumannii ATCC 19606T was able to utilise nitrogen sources more effectively and was more tolerant to pH, osmotic and antimicrobial stress. Virulence differences were also observed, with A. baumannii ATCC 19606T, A. pittii SH024, and A. nosocomialis RUH2624 persisting and forming larger biofilms on human skin than A. calcoaceticus. A. baumannii ATCC 19606T and A. pittii SH024 were also able to survive in a murine thigh infection model, whereas the other two species were eradicated. The current study provides important insights into the elucidation of differences in clinical relevance among Acinetobacter species. PMID:23144699

  14. A Precise Temperature-Responsive Bistable Switch Controlling Yersinia Virulence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nuss, Aaron Mischa; Schuster, Franziska; Roselius, Louisa; Klein, Johannes; Bücker, René; Herbst, Katharina; Heroven, Ann Kathrin; Pisano, Fabio; Wittmann, Christoph; Münch, Richard; Müller, Johannes; Jahn, Dieter; Dersch, Petra

    2016-12-01

    Different biomolecules have been identified in bacterial pathogens that sense changes in temperature and trigger expression of virulence programs upon host entry. However, the dynamics and quantitative outcome of this response in individual cells of a population, and how this influences pathogenicity are unknown. Here, we address these questions using a thermosensing virulence regulator of an intestinal pathogen (RovA of Yersinia pseudotuberculosis) as a model. We reveal that this regulator is part of a novel thermoresponsive bistable switch, which leads to high- and low-invasive subpopulations within a narrow temperature range. The temperature range in which bistability is observed is defined by the degradation and synthesis rate of the regulator, and is further adjustable via a nutrient-responsive regulator. The thermoresponsive switch is also characterized by a hysteretic behavior in which activation and deactivation occurred on vastly different time scales. Mathematical modeling accurately mirrored the experimental behavior and predicted that the thermoresponsiveness of this sophisticated bistable switch is mainly determined by the thermo-triggered increase of RovA proteolysis. We further observed RovA ON and OFF subpopulations of Y. pseudotuberculosis in the Peyer's patches and caecum of infected mice, and that changes in the RovA ON/OFF cell ratio reduce tissue colonization and overall virulence. This points to a bet-hedging strategy in which the thermoresponsive bistable switch plays a key role in adapting the bacteria to the fluctuating conditions encountered as they pass through the host's intestinal epithelium and suggests novel strategies for the development of antimicrobial therapies.

  15. A Precise Temperature-Responsive Bistable Switch Controlling Yersinia Virulence.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Aaron Mischa Nuss

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available Different biomolecules have been identified in bacterial pathogens that sense changes in temperature and trigger expression of virulence programs upon host entry. However, the dynamics and quantitative outcome of this response in individual cells of a population, and how this influences pathogenicity are unknown. Here, we address these questions using a thermosensing virulence regulator of an intestinal pathogen (RovA of Yersinia pseudotuberculosis as a model. We reveal that this regulator is part of a novel thermoresponsive bistable switch, which leads to high- and low-invasive subpopulations within a narrow temperature range. The temperature range in which bistability is observed is defined by the degradation and synthesis rate of the regulator, and is further adjustable via a nutrient-responsive regulator. The thermoresponsive switch is also characterized by a hysteretic behavior in which activation and deactivation occurred on vastly different time scales. Mathematical modeling accurately mirrored the experimental behavior and predicted that the thermoresponsiveness of this sophisticated bistable switch is mainly determined by the thermo-triggered increase of RovA proteolysis. We further observed RovA ON and OFF subpopulations of Y. pseudotuberculosis in the Peyer's patches and caecum of infected mice, and that changes in the RovA ON/OFF cell ratio reduce tissue colonization and overall virulence. This points to a bet-hedging strategy in which the thermoresponsive bistable switch plays a key role in adapting the bacteria to the fluctuating conditions encountered as they pass through the host's intestinal epithelium and suggests novel strategies for the development of antimicrobial therapies.

  16. Subinhibitory quinupristin/dalfopristin attenuates virulence of Staphylococcus aureus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Koszczol, Carmen; Bernardo, Katussevani; Krönke, Martin; Krut, Oleg

    2006-09-01

    The semi-synthetic streptogramin quinupristin/dalfopristin antibiotic exerts potent bactericidal activity against Staphylococcus aureus. We investigated whether, like other bactericidal antibiotics used at subinhibitory concentrations, quinupristin/dalfopristin enhances release of toxins by Gram-positive cocci. The activity of quinupristin/dalfopristin on exotoxin release by S. aureus was investigated by 2D SDS-PAGE combined with MALDI-TOF/MS analysis and by western blotting. We show that quinupristin/dalfopristin at subinhibitory concentrations reduces the release of S. aureus factors that induce tumour necrosis factor secretion in macrophages. Furthermore, quinupristin/dalfopristin but not linezolid attenuated S. aureus-mediated killing of infected host cells. When added to S. aureus cultures at different stages of bacterial growth, quinupristin/dalfopristin reduced in a dose-dependent manner the release of specific virulence factors (e.g. autolysin, protein A, alpha- and beta-haemolysins, lipases). In contrast, other presumably non-toxic exoproteins remained unchanged. The results of the present study suggest that subinhibitory quinupristin/dalfopristin inhibits virulence factor release by S. aureus, which might be especially helpful for the treatment of S. aureus infections, where both bactericidal as well as anti-toxin activity may be advantageous.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Islam, Md Shahidul; Krachler, Anne Marie

    2016-01-01

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

  18. The role of type III effectors from Xanthomonas axonopodis pv. manihotis in virulence and suppression of plant immunity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Medina, Cesar Augusto; Reyes, Paola Andrea; Trujillo, Cesar Augusto; Gonzalez, Juan Luis; Bejarano, David Alejandro; Montenegro, Nathaly Andrea; Jacobs, Jonathan M; Joe, Anna; Restrepo, Silvia; Alfano, James R; Bernal, Adriana

    2018-03-01

    Xanthomonas axonopodis pv. manihotis (Xam) causes cassava bacterial blight, the most important bacterial disease of cassava. Xam, like other Xanthomonas species, requires type III effectors (T3Es) for maximal virulence. Xam strain CIO151 possesses 17 predicted T3Es belonging to the Xanthomonas outer protein (Xop) class. This work aimed to characterize nine Xop effectors present in Xam CIO151 for their role in virulence and modulation of plant immunity. Our findings demonstrate the importance of XopZ, XopX, XopAO1 and AvrBs2 for full virulence, as well as a redundant function in virulence between XopN and XopQ in susceptible cassava plants. We tested their role in pathogen-associated molecular pattern (PAMP)-triggered immunity (PTI) and effector-triggered immunity (ETI) using heterologous systems. AvrBs2, XopR and XopAO1 are capable of suppressing PTI. ETI suppression activity was only detected for XopE4 and XopAO1. These results demonstrate the overall importance and diversity in functions of major virulence effectors AvrBs2 and XopAO1 in Xam during cassava infection. © 2017 BSPP AND JOHN WILEY & SONS LTD.

  19. Bile Sensing: The Activation of Vibrio parahaemolyticus Virulence

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bey-Hing Goh

    2017-04-01

    Full Text Available Bacteria must develop resistance to various inhospitable conditions in order to survive in the human gastrointestinal tract. Bile, which is secreted by the liver, and plays an important role in food digestion also has antimicrobial properties and is able to disrupt cellular homeostasis. Paradoxically, although bile is one of the guts defenses, many studies have reported that bacteria such as Vibrio parahaemolyticus can sense bile and use its presence as an environmental cue to upregulate virulence genes during infection. This article aims to discuss how bile is detected by V. parahaemolyticus and its role in regulating type III secretion system 2 leading to human infection. This bile–bacteria interaction pathway gives us a clearer understanding of the biochemical and structural analysis of the bacterial receptors involved in mediating a response to bile salts which appear to be a significant environmental cue during initiation of an infection.

  20. Assessing Pseudomonas virulence with a nonmammalian host: Drosophila melanogaster.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Haller, Samantha; Limmer, Stefanie; Ferrandon, Dominique

    2014-01-01

    Drosophila melanogaster flies represent an interesting model to study host-pathogen interactions as: (1) they are cheap and easy to raise rapidly and do not bring up ethical issues, (2) available genetic tools are highly sophisticated, for instance allowing tissue-specific alteration of gene expression, e.g., of immune genes, (3) they have a relatively complex organization, with distinct digestive tract and body cavity in which local or systemic infections, respectively, take place, (4) a medium throughput can be achieved in genetic screens, for instance looking for Pseudomonas aeruginosa mutants with altered virulence. We present here the techniques used to investigate host-pathogen relationships, namely the two major models of infections as well as the relevant parameters used to monitor the infection (survival, bacterial titer, induction of host immune response).

  1. Virulence of luminous vibrios to Artemia franciscana nauplii.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Soto-Rodriguez, S A; Roque, A; Lizarraga-Partida, M L; Guerra-Flores, A L; Gomez-Gill, B

    2003-02-27

    From healthy and diseased penaeid shrimp from Asia and the Americas, 25 luminous and 2 non-luminous bacterial strains were isolated, and 14 were phenotypically identified as Vibrio harveyi; 9 isolates produced significant mortalities (45 to 80%) in Artemia franciscana nauplii at inoculation densities of 10(5) to 10(6) CFU ml(-1) compared to the controls (unchallenged nauplii). The maximum number of bacteria ingested (bioencapsulated) by the Artemia nauplii varied from less than 10 to 10(3) CFU nauplius(-1) and no significant relationship was observed between the density of bacteria inoculated, the amount of bacteria ingested, and naupliar mortality. Significant correlations were obtained between naupliar mortality and production of proteases, phospholipases or siderophores, but not between mortality and lipase production, gelatinase production, hydrophobicity or hemolytic activity. The results suggest that virulence of the strains tested was more related to the production of particular exoenzymes than to the measured colonization factors.

  2. Bacterial sex in dental plaque.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Olsen, Ingar; Tribble, Gena D; Fiehn, Nils-Erik; Wang, Bing-Yan

    2013-01-01

    Genes are transferred between bacteria in dental plaque by transduction, conjugation, and transformation. Membrane vesicles can also provide a mechanism for horizontal gene transfer. DNA transfer is considered bacterial sex, but the transfer is not parallel to processes that we associate with sex in higher organisms. Several examples of bacterial gene transfer in the oral cavity are given in this review. How frequently this occurs in dental plaque is not clear, but evidence suggests that it affects a number of the major genera present. It has been estimated that new sequences in genomes established through horizontal gene transfer can constitute up to 30% of bacterial genomes. Gene transfer can be both inter- and intrageneric, and it can also affect transient organisms. The transferred DNA can be integrated or recombined in the recipient's chromosome or remain as an extrachromosomal inheritable element. This can make dental plaque a reservoir for antimicrobial resistance genes. The ability to transfer DNA is important for bacteria, making them better adapted to the harsh environment of the human mouth, and promoting their survival, virulence, and pathogenicity.

  3. Bacterial sex in dental plaque

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ingar Olsen

    2013-06-01

    Full Text Available Genes are transferred between bacteria in dental plaque by transduction, conjugation, and transformation. Membrane vesicles can also provide a mechanism for horizontal gene transfer. DNA transfer is considered bacterial sex, but the transfer is not parallel to processes that we associate with sex in higher organisms. Several examples of bacterial gene transfer in the oral cavity are given in this review. How frequently this occurs in dental plaque is not clear, but evidence suggests that it affects a number of the major genera present. It has been estimated that new sequences in genomes established through horizontal gene transfer can constitute up to 30% of bacterial genomes. Gene transfer can be both inter- and intrageneric, and it can also affect transient organisms. The transferred DNA can be integrated or recombined in the recipient's chromosome or remain as an extrachromosomal inheritable element. This can make dental plaque a reservoir for antimicrobial resistance genes. The ability to transfer DNA is important for bacteria, making them better adapted to the harsh environment of the human mouth, and promoting their survival, virulence, and pathogenicity.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pragman, Alexa A; Schlievert, Patrick M

    2004-10-01

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

  5. The Role of TonB Gene in Edwardsiella ictaluri Virulence

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hossam Abdelhamed

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available Edwardsiella ictaluri is a Gram-negative facultative intracellular pathogen that causes enteric septicemia in catfish (ESC. Stress factors including poor water quality, poor diet, rough handling, overcrowding, and water temperature fluctuations increase fish susceptibility to ESC. The TonB energy transducing system (TonB-ExbB-ExbD and TonB-dependent transporters of Gram-negative bacteria support active transport of scarce resources including iron, an essential micronutrient for bacterial virulence. Deletion of the tonB gene attenuates virulence in several pathogenic bacteria. In the current study, the role of TonB (NT01EI_RS07425 in iron acquisition and E. ictaluri virulence were investigated. To accomplish this, the E. ictaluri tonB gene was in-frame deleted. Growth kinetics, iron utilization, and virulence of the EiΔtonB mutant were determined. Loss of TonB caused a significant reduction in bacterial growth in iron-depleted medium (p > 0.05. The EiΔtonB mutant grew similarly to wild-type E. ictaluri when ferric iron was added to the iron-depleted medium. The EiΔtonB mutant was significantly attenuated in catfish compared with the parent strain (21.69 vs. 46.91% mortality. Catfish surviving infection with EiΔtonB had significant protection against ESC compared with naïve fish (100 vs. 40.47% survival. These findings indicate that TonB participates in pathogenesis of ESC and is an important E. ictaluri virulence factor.

  6. XocR, a LuxR solo required for virulence in Xanthomonas oryzae pv. oryzicola.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xu, Huiyong; Zhao, Yancun; Qian, Guoliang; Liu, Fengquan

    2015-01-01

    Xanthomonas oryzae pv. oryzicola (Xoc) causes bacterial leaf streak (BLS) in rice, a serious bacterial disease of rice in Asia and parts of Africa. The virulence mechanisms of Xoc are not entirely clear and control measures for BLS are poorly developed. The solo LuxR proteins are widespread and shown to be involved in virulence in some plant associated bacteria (PAB). Here, we have cloned and characterized a PAB LuxR solo from Xoc, named as XocR. Mutation of xocR almost completely impaired the virulence ability of Xoc on host rice, but did not alter the ability to trigger HR (hypersensitive response, a programmed cell death) on non-host (plant) tobacco, suggesting the diversity of function of xocR in host and non-host plants. We also provide evidence to show that xocR is involved in the regulation of growth-independent cell motility in response to a yet-to-be-identified rice signal, as mutation of xocR impaired cell swimming motility of wild-type Rs105 in the presence but not absence of rice macerate. We further found that xocR regulated the transcription of two characterized virulence-associated genes (recN and trpE) in the presence of rice macerate. The promoter regions of recN and trpE possessed a potential binding motif (an imperfect pip box-like element) of XocR, raising the possibility that XocR might directly bind the promoter regions of these two genes to regulate their transcriptional activity. Our studies add a new member of PAB LuxR solos and also provide new insights into the role of PAB LuxR solo in the virulence of Xanthomonas species.

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

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

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

    2014-01-01

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

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

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

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

    2014-08-01

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

  9. The impact of mouse passaging of Mycobacterium tuberculosis strains prior to virulence testing in the mouse and guinea pig aerosol models.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Paul J Converse

    2010-04-01

    Full Text Available It has been hypothesized that the virulence of lab-passaged Mycobacterium tuberculosis and recombinant M. tuberculosis mutants might be reduced due to multiple in vitro passages, and that virulence might be augmented by passage of these strains through mice before quantitative virulence testing in the mouse or guinea pig aerosol models.By testing three M. tuberculosis H37Rv samples, one deletion mutant, and one recent clinical isolate for survival by the quantitative organ CFU counting method in mouse or guinea pig aerosol or intravenous infection models, we could discern no increase in bacterial fitness as a result of passaging of M. tuberculosis strains in mice prior to quantitative virulence testing in two animal models. Surface lipid expression as assessed by neutral red staining and thin-layer chromatography for PDIM analysis also failed to identify virulence correlates.These results indicate that animal passaging of M. tuberculosis strains prior to quantitative virulence testing in mouse or guinea pig models does not enhance or restore potency to strains that may have lost virulence due to in vitro passaging. It is critical to verify virulence of parental strains before genetic manipulations are undertaken and comparisons are made.

  10. [Bacterial vaginosis].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Romero Herrero, Daniel; Andreu Domingo, Antonia

    2016-07-01

    Bacterial vaginosis (BV) is the main cause of vaginal dysbacteriosis in the women during the reproductive age. It is an entity in which many studies have focused for years and which is still open for discussion topics. This is due to the diversity of microorganisms that cause it and therefore, its difficult treatment. Bacterial vaginosis is probably the result of vaginal colonization by complex bacterial communities, many of them non-cultivable and with interdependent metabolism where anaerobic populations most likely play an important role in its pathogenesis. The main symptoms are an increase of vaginal discharge and the unpleasant smell of it. It can lead to serious consequences for women, such as an increased risk of contracting sexually transmitted infections including human immunodeficiency virus and upper genital tract and pregnancy complications. Gram stain is the gold standard for microbiological diagnosis of BV, but can also be diagnosed using the Amsel clinical criteria. It should not be considered a sexually transmitted disease but it is highly related to sex. Recurrence is the main problem of medical treatment. Apart from BV, there are other dysbacteriosis less characterized like aerobic vaginitis of which further studies are coming slowly but are achieving more attention and consensus among specialists. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier España, S.L.U. All rights reserved.

  11. Prevalence of diarrheagenic Escherichia coli virulence genes in the feces of slaughtered cattle, chickens, and pigs in Burkina Faso

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kagambèga, Assèta; Martikainen, Outi; Siitonen, Anja; Traoré, Alfred S; Barro, Nicolas; Haukka, Kaisa

    2012-01-01

    We investigated the prevalence of the virulence genes specific for five major pathogroups of diarrheagenic Escherichia coli (DEC) in primary cultures from feces of animals slaughtered for human consumption in Burkina Faso. For the study, 704 feces samples were collected from cattle (n = 304), chickens (n = 350), and pigs (n = 50) during carcass processing. The presence of the virulence-associated genes in the mixed bacterial cultures was assessed using 16-plex polymerase chain reaction (PCR). Virulence genes indicating presence of DEC were detected in 48% of the cattle, 48% of the chicken, and 68% of the pig feces samples. Virulence genes specific for different DECs were detected in the following percentages of the cattle, chicken, and pig feces samples: Shiga toxin-producing E. coli (STEC) in 37%, 6%, and 30%; enteropathogenic E. coli (EPEC) in 8%, 37%, and 32%; enterotoxigenic E. coli (ETEC) in 4%, 5%, and 18%; and enteroaggregative E. coli (EAEC) in 7%, 6%, and 32%. Enteroinvasive E. coli (EIEC) virulence genes were detected in 1% of chicken feces samples only. The study was the first of its kind in Burkina Faso and revealed the common occurrence of the diarrheal virulence genes in feces of food animals. This indicates that food animals are reservoirs of DEC that may contaminate meat because of the defective slaughter and storage conditions and pose a health risk to the consumers in Burkina Faso. PMID:23170227

  12. All Yersinia enterocolitica are pathogenic: virulence of phylogroup 1 Y. enterocolitica in a Galleria mellonella infection model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alenizi, Dhahi; Ringwood, Tamara; Redhwan, Alya; Bouraha, Bouchra; Wren, Brendan W; Prentice, Michael; McNally, Alan

    2016-08-01

    Yersinia enterocolitica is a zoonotic pathogen and a common cause of gastroenteritis in humans. The species is composed of six diverse phylogroups, of which strains of phylogroup 1 are considered non-pathogenic to mammals due to the lack of the major virulence plasmid pYV, and their lack of virulence in a mouse infection model. In the present report we present data examining the pathogenicity of strains of Y. enterocolitica across all six phylogroups in a Galleria mellonellla model. We have demonstrated that in this model strains of phylogroup 1 exhibit severe pathogenesis with a lethal dose of as low as 10 c.f.u., that this virulence is an active process and that flagella play a major role in the virulence phenotype. We have also demonstrated that the complete lack of virulence in Galleria of the mammalian pathogenic phylogroups is not due to carriage of the pYV virulence plasmid. Our data suggest that all Y. enterocolitica can be pathogenic, which may be a reflection of the true natural habitat of the species, and that we may need to reconsider the eco-evo perspective of this important bacterial species.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2014-10-03

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

  14. Virulence Factors IN Fungi OF Systemic Mycoses

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    KUROKAWA Cilmery Suemi

    1998-01-01

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

  15. Virulence variations in Shigella and enteroinvasive Escherichia coli using the Caenorhabditis elegans model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fung, Crystal Ching; Octavia, Sophie; Mooney, Anne-Marie; Lan, Ruiting

    2015-01-01

    Shigella species and enteroinvasive Escherichia coli (EIEC) belong to the same species genetically, with remarkable phenotypic and genomic similarities. Shigella is the main cause of bacillary dysentery with around 160 million annual cases, while EIEC generally induces a milder disease compared to Shigella. This study aimed to determine virulence variations between Shigella and EIEC using the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans as a model host. Caenorhabditis elegans killing- and bacterial colonization assays were performed to examine the potential difference in virulence between Shigella and EIEC strains. Statistically significant difference in the survival rates of nematodes was demonstrated, with Shigella causing death at 88.24 ± 1.20% and EIEC at 94.37 ± 0.70%. The intestinal load of bacteria in the nematodes was found to be 7.65 × 10(4) ± 8.83 × 10(3) and 2.92 × 10(4) ± 6.26 × 10(3) CFU ml(-1) per nematode for Shigella and EIEC, respectively. Shigella dysenteriae serotype 1 which carries the Shiga toxin showed the lowest nematode survival rate at 82.6 ± 3.97% and highest bacterial colonization of 1.75 × 10(5) ± 8.17 × 10(4) CFU ml(-1), whereas a virulence plasmid-negative Shigella strain demonstrated 100 ± 0% nematode survival and lowest bacterial accumulation of 1.02 × 10(4) ± 7.23 × 10(2) CFU ml(-1). This study demonstrates C. elegans as an effective model for examining and comparing Shigella and EIEC virulence variation. © FEMS 2014. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  16. Frequency of virulence factors in Helicobacter pylori-infected patients with gastritis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Salimzadeh, Loghman; Bagheri, Nader; Zamanzad, Behnam; Azadegan-Dehkordi, Fatemeh; Rahimian, Ghorbanali; Hashemzadeh-Chaleshtori, Morteza; Rafieian-Kopaei, Mahmoud; Sanei, Mohammad Hossein; Shirzad, Hedayatollah

    2015-03-01

    The outcome of Helicobacter pylori infection has been related to specific virulence-associated bacterial genotypes. The vacuolating cytotoxin (vacA), cagA gene, oipA and babA2 gene are important virulence factor involving gastric diseases. The objective of this study was to assess the relationship between virulence factors of H. pylori and histopathological findings. Gastroduodenoscopy was performed in 436 dyspeptic patients. Antrum biopsy was obtained for detection of H. pylori, virulence factors and for histopathological assessment. The polymerase chain reaction was used to detect virulence factors of H. pylori using specific primers. vacA genotypes in patients infected with H. pylori were associated with cagA, iceA1 and iceA2. In the patients with H. pylori infection there was a significant relationship between cagA positivity and neutrophil activity (P = 0.004) and chronic inflammation (P = 0.013) and with H. pylori density (P = 0.034). Neutrophil infiltration was found to be more severe in the s1 group than in the s2 group (P = 0.042). Also was a significant relationship between oipA positivity and neutrophil activity (P = 0.004) and with H. pylori density (P = 0.018). No significant relationships were observed between other vacA genotypes and histopathological parameters. H. pylori strains showing cagA, vacA s1 and oipA positivity are associated with more severe gastritis in some histological features but virulence factors of H. pylori do not appear to determine the overall pattern of gastritis. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

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

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    Andrés E. Marcoleta

    2018-02-01

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

  18. Assessment of Listeria monocytogenes virulence in the Galleria mellonella insect larvae model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rakic Martinez, Mira; Wiedmann, Martin; Ferguson, Martine; Datta, Atin R

    2017-01-01

    Several animal models have been used to understand the molecular basis of the pathogenicity, infectious dose and strain to strain variation of Listeria monocytogenes. The greater wax worm Galleria mellonella, as an alternative model, provides some useful advantages not available with other models and has already been described as suitable for the virulence assessment of various pathogens including L. monocytogenes. The objectives of this study are: 1) confirming the usefulness of this model with a wide panel of Listeria spp. including non-pathogenic L. innocua, L. seeligeri, L. welshimeri and animal pathogen L. ivanovii; 2) assessment of virulence of several isogenic in-frame deletion mutants in virulence and stress related genes of L. monocytogenes and 3) virulence assessment of paired food and clinical isolates of L. monocytogenes from 14 major listeriosis outbreaks occurred worldwide between 1980 and 2015. Larvae injected with different concentrations of Listeria were incubated at 37°C and monitored over seven days for time needed to kill 50% of larvae (LT50) and to determine change of bacterial population in G. mellonella, 2 and 24 hours post-inoculation. Non-pathogenic members of Listeria and L. ivanovii showed significantly (P monocytogenes strains. Isogenic mutants of L. monocytogenes with the deletions in prfA, plcA, hly, actA and virR genes, also showed significantly (P monocytogenes strains related to non-invasive (gastroenteritis) outbreaks of listeriosis showed significantly (P < 0.05) lower virulence than isolates of the same serotype obtained from outbreaks with invasive symptoms. The difference, however, was dose and strain- dependent. No significant differences in virulence were observed among the serotype tested in this study.

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

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    Gunlög Rasmussen

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

  20. Macrophage replication screen identifies a novel Francisella hydroperoxide resistance protein involved in virulence.

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    Anna C Llewellyn

    Full Text Available Francisella tularensis is a gram-negative facultative intracellular pathogen and the causative agent of tularemia. Recently, genome-wide screens have identified Francisella genes required for virulence in mice. However, the mechanisms by which most of the corresponding proteins contribute to pathogenesis are still largely unknown. To further elucidate the roles of these virulence determinants in Francisella pathogenesis, we tested whether each gene was required for replication of the model pathogen F. novicida within macrophages, an important virulence trait. Fifty-three of the 224 genes tested were involved in intracellular replication, including many of those within the Francisella pathogenicity island (FPI, validating our results. Interestingly, over one third of the genes identified are annotated as hypothetical, indicating that F. novicida likely utilizes novel virulence factors for intracellular replication. To further characterize these virulence determinants, we selected two hypothetical genes to study in more detail. As predicted by our screen, deletion mutants of FTN_0096 and FTN_1133 were attenuated for replication in macrophages. The mutants displayed differing levels of attenuation in vivo, with the FTN_1133 mutant being the most attenuated. FTN_1133 has sequence similarity to the organic hydroperoxide resistance protein Ohr, an enzyme involved in the bacterial response to oxidative stress. We show that FTN_1133 is required for F. novicida resistance to, and degradation of, organic hydroperoxides as well as resistance to the action of the NADPH oxidase both in macrophages and mice. Furthermore, we demonstrate that F. holarctica LVS, a strain derived from a highly virulent human pathogenic species of Francisella, also requires this protein for organic hydroperoxide resistance as well as replication in macrophages and mice. This study expands our knowledge of Francisella's largely uncharacterized intracellular lifecycle and

  1. Identification of anti-virulence compounds that disrupt quorum-sensing regulated acute and persistent pathogenicity.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Melissa Starkey

    2014-08-01

    Full Text Available Etiological agents of acute, persistent, or relapsing clinical infections are often refractory to antibiotics due to multidrug resistance and/or antibiotic tolerance. Pseudomonas aeruginosa is an opportunistic Gram-negative bacterial pathogen that causes recalcitrant and severe acute chronic and persistent human infections. Here, we target the MvfR-regulated P. aeruginosa quorum sensing (QS virulence pathway to isolate robust molecules that specifically inhibit infection without affecting bacterial growth or viability to mitigate selective resistance. Using a whole-cell high-throughput screen (HTS and structure-activity relationship (SAR analysis, we identify compounds that block the synthesis of both pro-persistence and pro-acute MvfR-dependent signaling molecules. These compounds, which share a benzamide-benzimidazole backbone and are unrelated to previous MvfR-regulon inhibitors, bind the global virulence QS transcriptional regulator, MvfR (PqsR; inhibit the MvfR regulon in multi-drug resistant isolates; are active against P. aeruginosa acute and persistent murine infections; and do not perturb bacterial growth. In addition, they are the first compounds identified to reduce the formation of antibiotic-tolerant persister cells. As such, these molecules provide for the development of next-generation clinical therapeutics to more effectively treat refractory and deleterious bacterial-human infections.

  2. Bacterial mitosis

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Møller-Jensen, Jakob; Borch, Jonas; Dam, Mette

    2003-01-01

    Bacterial DNA segregation takes place in an active and ordered fashion. In the case of Escherichia coli plasmid R1, the partitioning system (par) separates paired plasmid copies and moves them to opposite cell poles. Here we address the mechanism by which the three components of the R1 par system...... act together to generate the force required for plasmid movement during segregation. ParR protein binds cooperatively to the centromeric parC DNA region, thereby forming a complex that interacts with the filament-forming actin-like ParM protein in an ATP-dependent manner, suggesting that plasmid...

  3. AhrC and Eep Are Biofilm Infection-Associated Virulence Factors in Enterococcus faecalis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guiton, Pascale S.; Barnes, Aaron M. T.; Manias, Dawn A.; Chuang-Smith, Olivia N.; Kohler, Petra L.; Spaulding, Adam R.; Hultgren, Scott J.; Schlievert, Patrick M.; Dunny, Gary M.

    2013-01-01

    Enterococcus faecalis is part of the human intestinal microbiome and is a prominent cause of health care-associated infections. The pathogenesis of many E. faecalis infections, including endocarditis and catheter-associated urinary tract infection (CAUTI), is related to the ability of clinical isolates to form biofilms. To identify chromosomal genetic determinants responsible for E. faecalis biofilm-mediated infection, we used a rabbit model of endocarditis to test strains with transposon insertions or in-frame deletions in biofilm-associated loci: ahrC, argR, atlA, opuBC, pyrC, recN, and sepF. Only the ahrC mutant was significantly attenuated in endocarditis. We demonstrate that the transcriptional regulator AhrC and the protease Eep, which we showed previously to be an endocarditis virulence factor, are also required for full virulence in murine CAUTI. Therefore, AhrC and Eep can be classified as enterococcal biofilm-associated virulence factors. Loss of ahrC caused defects in early attachment and accumulation of biofilm biomass. Characterization of ahrC transcription revealed that the temporal expression of this locus observed in wild-type cells promotes initiation of early biofilm formation and the establishment of endocarditis. This is the first report of AhrC serving as a virulence factor in any bacterial species. PMID:23460519

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2004-12-01

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

  5. Virulence factor genotypes of Helicobacter pylori affect cure rates of eradication therapy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sugimoto, Mitsushige; Yamaoka, Yoshio

    2009-01-01

    The cure rates of Helicobacter pylori infection by using a combination of a proton pump inhibitor (PPI) and antimicrobial agents are mainly influenced by bacterial susceptibility to antimicrobial agents and the magnitude of acid inhibition during the treatment. Currently used empirical triple therapies do not reliably produce a > or =80% cure rate on an intention-to-treat basis. Therefore, tailored regimens based on relevant microbiological findings and pharmacogenomics are recommended for attaining an acceptable > or =95% cure rate. Recently, virulence factors of H. pylori, such as cagA and vacA, are reported to be major factors determining the cure rates. Individuals infected with strains with cagA-negative and vacA s2 genotypes have significantly increased risk of eradication failure of H. pylori infection. These virulence factors enhance gastric mucosal inflammation and are associated with the development of peptic ulcer and gastric cancer. H. pylori virulence factors induce proinflammatory cytokines, such as interleukin (IL)-1, IL-8, and tumor necrosis factor (TNF)- which influence mucosal inflammation and/or gastric acid secretion. When physicians select an H. pylori eradication regimen with an acceptable cure rate, they might need to consider H. pylori virulence factors, especially cagA and vacA.

  6. ESX-1-mediated translocation to the cytosol controls virulence of mycobacteria

    KAUST Repository

    Houben, Diane; Demangel, Caroline; Van Ingen, Jakko; Perez, Jorge; Baldeó n, Lucy R.; Abdallah, Abdallah; Caleechurn, Laxmee; Bottai, Daria; Van Zon, Maaike; De Punder, Karin; Van Der Laan, Tridia; Kant, Arie; Bossers-De Vries, Ruth; Willemsen, Peter Th J; Bitter, Wilbert M.; Van Soolingen, Dick; Brosch, Roland; Van Der Wel, Nicole N.; Peters, Peter J.

    2012-01-01

    Mycobacterium species, including Mycobacterium tuberculosis and Mycobacterium leprae, are among the most potent human bacterial pathogens. The discovery of cytosolic mycobacteria challenged the paradigm that these pathogens exclusively localize within the phagosome of host cells. As yet the biological relevance of mycobacterial translocation to the cytosol remained unclear. In this current study we used electron microscopy techniques to establish a clear link between translocation and mycobacterial virulence. Pathogenic, patient-derived mycobacteria species were found to translocate to the cytosol, while non-pathogenic species did not. We were further able to link cytosolic translocation with pathogenicity by introducing the ESX-1 (type VII) secretion system into the non-virulent, exclusively phagolysosomal Mycobacterium bovis BCG. Furthermore, we show that translocation is dependent on the C-terminus of the early-secreted antigen ESAT-6. The C-terminal truncation of ESAT-6 was shown to result in attenuation in mice, again linking translocation to virulence. Together, these data demonstrate the molecular mechanism facilitating translocation of mycobacteria. The ability to translocate from the phagolysosome to the cytosol is with this study proven to be biologically significant as it determines mycobacterial virulence. © 2012 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

  7. Inactivation of glutamate racemase (MurI) eliminates virulence in Streptococcus mutans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Jianying; Liu, Jia; Ling, Junqi; Tong, Zhongchun; Fu, Yun; Liang, Min

    2016-01-01

    Inhibition of enzymes required for bacterial cell wall synthesis is often lethal or leads to virulence defects. Glutamate racemase (MurI), an essential enzyme in peptidoglycan biosynthesis, has been an attractive target for therapeutic interventions. Streptococcus mutans, one of the many etiological factors of dental caries, possesses a series of virulence factors associated with cariogenicity. However, little is known regarding the mechanism by which MurI influences pathogenesis of S. mutans. In this work, a stable mutant of S. mutans deficient in glutamate racemase (S. mutans FW1718) was constructed to investigate the impact of murI inactivation on cariogenic virulence in S. mutans UA159. Microscopy revealed that the murI mutant exhibited an enlarged cell size, longer cell chains, diminished cell⬜cell aggregation, and altered cell surface ultrastructure compared with the wild-type. Characterization of this mutant revealed that murI deficiency weakened acidogenicity, aciduricity, and biofilm formation ability of S. mutans (Pmutans virulence properties, making MurI a potential target for controlling dental caries. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier GmbH. All rights reserved.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goerke, Christiane; Köller, Johanna; Wolz, Christiane

    2006-01-01

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

  9. Secretome analysis defines the major role of SecDF in Staphylococcus aureus virulence.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chantal Quiblier

    Full Text Available The Sec pathway plays a prominent role in protein export and membrane insertion, including the secretion of major bacterial virulence determinants. The accessory Sec constituent SecDF has been proposed to contribute to protein export. Deletion of Staphylococcus aureus secDF has previously been shown to reduce resistance, to alter cell separation, and to change the expression of certain virulence factors. To analyse the impact of the secDF deletion in S. aureus on protein secretion, a quantitative secretome analysis was performed. Numerous Sec signal containing proteins involved in virulence were found to be decreased in the supernatant of the secDF mutant. However, two Sec-dependent hydrolases were increased in comparison to the wild type, suggesting additional indirect, regulatory effects to occur upon deletion of secDF. Adhesion, invasion, and cytotoxicity of the secDF mutant were reduced in human umbilical vein endothelial cells. Virulence was significantly reduced using a Galleria mellonella insect model. Altogether, SecDF is a promising therapeutic target for controlling S. aureus infections.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2016-01-01

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

  11. ESX-1-mediated translocation to the cytosol controls virulence of mycobacteria

    KAUST Repository

    Houben, Diane

    2012-05-08

    Mycobacterium species, including Mycobacterium tuberculosis and Mycobacterium leprae, are among the most potent human bacterial pathogens. The discovery of cytosolic mycobacteria challenged the paradigm that these pathogens exclusively localize within the phagosome of host cells. As yet the biological relevance of mycobacterial translocation to the cytosol remained unclear. In this current study we used electron microscopy techniques to establish a clear link between translocation and mycobacterial virulence. Pathogenic, patient-derived mycobacteria species were found to translocate to the cytosol, while non-pathogenic species did not. We were further able to link cytosolic translocation with pathogenicity by introducing the ESX-1 (type VII) secretion system into the non-virulent, exclusively phagolysosomal Mycobacterium bovis BCG. Furthermore, we show that translocation is dependent on the C-terminus of the early-secreted antigen ESAT-6. The C-terminal truncation of ESAT-6 was shown to result in attenuation in mice, again linking translocation to virulence. Together, these data demonstrate the molecular mechanism facilitating translocation of mycobacteria. The ability to translocate from the phagolysosome to the cytosol is with this study proven to be biologically significant as it determines mycobacterial virulence. © 2012 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

  12. Intracellularly Induced Cyclophilins Play an Important Role in Stress Adaptation and Virulence of Brucella abortus

    Science.gov (United States)

    García Fernández, Lucía; DelVecchio, Vito G.; Briones, Gabriel

    2013-01-01

    Brucella is an intracellular bacterial pathogen that causes the worldwide zoonotic disease brucellosis. Brucella virulence relies on its ability to transition to an intracellular lifestyle within host cells. Thus, this pathogen must sense its intracellular localization and then reprogram gene expression for survival within the host cell. A comparative proteomic investigation was performed to identify differentially expressed proteins potentially relevant for Brucella intracellular adaptation. Two proteins identified as cyclophilins (CypA and CypB) were overexpressed in the intracellular environment of the host cell in comparison to laboratory-grown Brucella. To define the potential role of cyclophilins in Brucella virulence, a double-deletion mutant was constructed and its resulting phenotype was characterized. The Brucella abortus ΔcypAB mutant displayed increased sensitivity to environmental stressors, such as oxidative stress, pH, and detergents. In addition, the B. abortus ΔcypAB mutant strain had a reduced growth rate at lower temperature, a phenotype associated with defective expression of cyclophilins in other microorganisms. The B. abortus ΔcypAB mutant also displays reduced virulence in BALB/c mice and defective intracellular survival in HeLa cells. These findings suggest that cyclophilins are important for Brucella virulence and survival in the host cells. PMID:23230297

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2017-09-25

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

  14. Detection of virulence genes in Uropathogenic E. coli (UPEC strains by Multiplex-PCR method

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Javad Mohammadi

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Background & Objectives: Urinary tract infection caused by E. coli is one of the most common illnesses in all age groups worldwide. Presence of virulence genes is a key factor in bacterial pathogens in uroepithelial cells. The present study was performed to detect iha, iroN, ompT genes in the Uropathogenic E.coli isolates from clinical samples using multiplex-PCR method in Kerman. Materials & Methods: In this descriptive cross-sectional study, 200 samples of patients with urinary tract infections in Kerman hospitals were collected. After biochemical and microbiological tests, all strains were tested with regard to the presence of iha, iroN, and ompT genes using multiplex-PCR method. Results: The results of Multiplex-PCR showed that all specimens had one, two, or three virulence genes simultaneously. The highest and lowest frequency distribution of genes was related to iha (56.7% and iroN (20% respectively. Conclusion: According to the prevalence of urinary tract infection in the community and distribution of resistance and virulence factors, the fast and accurate detection of the strains and virulence genes is necessary

  15. Antibiotics resistance phenomenon and virulence ability in bacteria from water environment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mohamed I. Azzam

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available This study aims to determine the impact of five main drains as sources of antibiotics resistant bacteria in River Nile at Rosetta branch, and to generate a baseline data on their virulence ability. Out of 212 bacterial isolates, 39.2% and 60.8% were recovered from drains and Rosetta branch, respectively. Susceptibility of bacteria to different antibiotics showed multiple antibiotics resistances (MAR for the majority of isolates. Meanwhile, sensitivity was mostly directed to ofloxacin and norfloxacin antibiotics. Calculated MAR index values (>0.25 classified area of study as potentially health risk environment. Testing virulence ability of bacteria from drains showed positive results (65%. Contrastively, virulent strains in Rosetta branch were mostly lacking in this study. Concluding remarks justify the strong correlation (r = +0.82 between MAR and virulence of bacteria in polluted aquatic ecosystems, and highlight the potential of drains as reactors for their amplification and dissemination. The study suggests regular monitoring for antibiotics resistance in native bacteria of River Nile, prohibition of unregulated use of antibiotics, and proper management for wastes disposal.

  16. Coregulation of host-adapted metabolism and virulence by pathogenic yersiniae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ann Kathrin eHeroven

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available Deciphering the principles how pathogenic bacteria adapt their metabolism to a specific host microenvironment is critical for understanding bacterial pathogenesis. The enteric pathogenic Yersinia species Y. pseudotuberculosis and Y. enterocolitica and the causative agent of plague, Y. pestis, are able to survive in a large variety of environmental reservoirs (e.g. soil, plants, insects as well as warm-blooded animals (e.g. rodents, pigs, humans with a particular preference for lymphatic tissues. In order to manage rapidly changing environmental conditions and inter-bacterial competition, Yersinia senses the nutritional composition during the course of an infection by special molecular devices, integrates this information and adapts its metabolism accordingly. In addition, nutrient availability has an impact on expression of virulence genes in response to C-sources, demonstrating a tight link between the pathogenicity of yersiniae and utilization of nutrients. Recent studies revealed that global regulatory factors such as the cAMP receptor protein (Crp and the carbon storage regulator (Csr system are part of a large network of transcriptional and posttranscriptional control strategies adjusting metabolic changes and virulence in response to temperature, ion and nutrient availability. Gained knowledge about the specific metabolic requirements and the correlation between metabolic and virulence gene expression that enable efficient host colonization led to the identification of new potential antimicrobial targets.

  17. The Galleria mellonella larvae as an in vivo model for evaluation of Shigella virulence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barnoy, Shoshana; Gancz, Hanan; Zhu, Yuewei; Honnold, Cary L; Zurawski, Daniel V; Venkatesan, Malabi M

    2017-07-04

    Shigella spp. causing bacterial diarrhea and dysentery are human enteroinvasive bacterial pathogens that are orally transmitted through contaminated food and water and cause bacillary dysentery. Although natural Shigella infections are restricted to humans and primates, several smaller animal models are used to analyze individual steps in pathogenesis. No animal model fully duplicates the human response and sustaining the models requires expensive animals, costly maintenance of animal facilities, veterinary services and approved animal protocols. This study proposes the development of the caterpillar larvae of Galleria mellonella as a simple, inexpensive, informative, and rapid in-vivo model for evaluating virulence and the interaction of Shigella with cells of the insect innate immunity. Virulent Shigella injected through the forelegs causes larvae death. The mortality rates were dependent on the Shigella strain, the infectious dose, and the presence of the virulence plasmid. Wild-type S. flexneri 2a, persisted and replicated within the larvae, resulting in haemocyte cell death, whereas plasmid-cured mutants were rapidly cleared. Histology of the infected larvae in conjunction with fluorescence, immunofluorescence, and transmission electron microscopy indicate that S. flexneri reside within a vacuole of the insect haemocytes that ultrastructurally resembles vacuoles described in studies with mouse and human macrophage cell lines. Some of these bacteria-laden vacuoles had double-membranes characteristic of autophagosomes. These results suggest that G. mellonella larvae can be used as an easy-to-use animal model to understand Shigella pathogenesis that requires none of the time and labor-consuming procedures typical of other systems.

  18. New insights into virulence mechanisms of rice pathogen Acidovorax avenae subsp. avenae strain RS-1 following exposure to ß-lactam antibiotics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Bin; Ge, Mengyu; Zhang, Yang; Wang, Li; Ibrahim, Muhammad; Wang, Yanli; Sun, Guochang; Chen, Gongyou

    2016-02-26

    Recent research has shown that pathogen virulence can be altered by exposure to antibiotics, even when the growth rate is unaffected. Investigating this phenomenon provides new insights into understanding the virulence mechanisms of bacterial pathogens. This study investigates the phenotypic and transcriptomic responses of the rice pathogenic bacterium Acidovorax avenae subsp. avenae (Aaa) strain RS-1 to ß-lactam antibiotics especially Ampicillin (Amp). Our results indicate that exposure to Amp does not influence bacterial growth and biofilm formation, but alters the virulence, colonization capacity, composition of extracellular polymeric substances and secretion of Type VI secretion system (T6SS) effector Hcp. This attenuation in virulence is linked to unique or differential expression of known virulence-associated genes based on genome-wide transcriptomic analysis. The reliability of expression data generated by RNA-Seq was verified with quantitative real-time PCR of 21 selected T6SS genes, where significant down-regulation in expression of hcp gene, corresponding to the reduction in secretion of Hcp, was observed under exposure to Amp. Hcp is highlighted as a potential target for Amp, with similar changes observed in virulence-associated phenotypes between exposure to Amp and mutation of hcp gene. In addition, Hcp secretion is reduced in knockout mutants of 4 differentially expressed T6SS genes.

  19. Assessment of Listeria monocytogenes virulence in the Galleria mellonella insect larvae model.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mira Rakic Martinez

    Full Text Available Several animal models have been used to understand the molecular basis of the pathogenicity, infectious dose and strain to strain variation of Listeria monocytogenes. The greater wax worm Galleria mellonella, as an alternative model, provides some useful advantages not available with other models and has already been described as suitable for the virulence assessment of various pathogens including L. monocytogenes. The objectives of this study are: 1 confirming the usefulness of this model with a wide panel of Listeria spp. including non-pathogenic L. innocua, L. seeligeri, L. welshimeri and animal pathogen L. ivanovii; 2 assessment of virulence of several isogenic in-frame deletion mutants in virulence and stress related genes of L. monocytogenes and 3 virulence assessment of paired food and clinical isolates of L. monocytogenes from 14 major listeriosis outbreaks occurred worldwide between 1980 and 2015. Larvae injected with different concentrations of Listeria were incubated at 37°C and monitored over seven days for time needed to kill 50% of larvae (LT50 and to determine change of bacterial population in G. mellonella, 2 and 24 hours post-inoculation. Non-pathogenic members of Listeria and L. ivanovii showed significantly (P < 0.05 higher LT50 (lower virulence than the wild type L. monocytogenes strains. Isogenic mutants of L. monocytogenes with the deletions in prfA, plcA, hly, actA and virR genes, also showed significantly (P < 0.05 higher LT50 than the wild type strain at the inoculum of 106CFU/larva. Food isolates had significantly (P < 0.05 lower virulence than the paired clinical isolates, at all three inoculum concentrations. L. monocytogenes strains related to non-invasive (gastroenteritis outbreaks of listeriosis showed significantly (P < 0.05 lower virulence than isolates of the same serotype obtained from outbreaks with invasive symptoms. The difference, however, was dose and strain- dependent. No significant differences in

  20. Characterization of Aeromonas hydrophila wound pathotypes by comparative genomic and functional analyses of virulence genes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grim, Christopher J; Kozlova, Elena V; Sha, Jian; Fitts, Eric C; van Lier, Christina J; Kirtley, Michelle L; Joseph, Sandeep J; Read, Timothy D; Burd, Eileen M; Tall, Ben D; Joseph, Sam W; Horneman, Amy J; Chopra, Ashok K; Shak, Joshua R

    2013-04-23

    strains remains a challenge for this genus, as it is for other opportunistic pathogens. This paper demonstrates, by using whole-genome sequencing of clinical Aeromonas strains, followed by corresponding virulence assays, that comparative genomics can be used to identify a virulent subtype of A. hydrophila that is aggressive during human infection and more lethal in a mouse model of infection. This aggressive pathotype contained genes for toxin production, toxin secretion, and bacterial motility that likely enabled its pathogenicity. Our results highlight the potential of whole-genome sequencing to transform microbial diagnostics; with further advances in rapid sequencing and annotation, genomic analysis will be able to provide timely information on the identities and virulence potential of clinically isolated microorganisms.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2015-01-01

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

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

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

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

    2011-01-01

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

  3. Bacterial Serine/Threonine Protein Kinases in Host-Pathogen Interactions*

    Science.gov (United States)

    Canova, Marc J.; Molle, Virginie

    2014-01-01

    In bacterial pathogenesis, monitoring and adapting to the dynamically changing environment in the host and an ability to disrupt host immune responses are critical. The virulence determinants of pathogenic bacteria include the sensor/signaling proteins of the serine/threonine protein kinase (STPK) family that have a dual role of sensing the environment and subverting specific host defense processes. STPKs can sense a wide range of signals and coordinate multiple cellular processes to mount an appropriate response. Here, we review some of the well studied bacterial STPKs that are essential virulence factors and that modify global host responses during infection. PMID:24554701

  4. Bacterial serine/threonine protein kinases in host-pathogen interactions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Canova, Marc J; Molle, Virginie

    2014-04-04

    In bacterial pathogenesis, monitoring and adapting to the dynamically changing environment in the host and an ability to disrupt host immune responses are critical. The virulence determinants of pathogenic bacteria include the sensor/signaling proteins of the serine/threonine protein kinase (STPK) family that have a dual role of sensing the environment and subverting specific host defense processes. STPKs can sense a wide range of signals and coordinate multiple cellular processes to mount an appropriate response. Here, we review some of the well studied bacterial STPKs that are essential virulence factors and that modify global host responses during infection.

  5. Bacterial Ecology

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Fenchel, Tom

    2011-01-01

    compounds these must first be undergo extracellular hydrolysis. Bacteria have a great diversity with respect to types of metabolism that far exceeds the metabolic repertoire of eukaryotic organisms. Bacteria play a fundamental role in the biosphere and certain key processes such as, for example......, the production and oxidation of methane, nitrate reduction and fixation of atmospheric nitrogen are exclusively carried out by different groups of bacteria. Some bacterial species – ‘extremophiles’ – thrive in extreme environments in which no eukaryotic organisms can survive with respect to temperature, salinity...... biogeochemical processes are carried exclusively by bacteria. * Bacteria play an important role in all types of habitats including some that cannot support eukaryotic life....

  6. Bacterial Actins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Izoré, Thierry; van den Ent, Fusinita

    2017-01-01

    A diverse set of protein polymers, structurally related to actin filaments contributes to the organization of bacterial cells as cytomotive or cytoskeletal filaments. This chapter describes actin homologs encoded by bacterial chromosomes. MamK filaments, unique to magnetotactic bacteria, help establishing magnetic biological compasses by interacting with magnetosomes. Magnetosomes are intracellular membrane invaginations containing biomineralized crystals of iron oxide that are positioned by MamK along the long-axis of the cell. FtsA is widespread across bacteria and it is one of the earliest components of the divisome to arrive at midcell, where it anchors the cell division machinery to the membrane. FtsA binds directly to FtsZ filaments and to the membrane through its C-terminus. FtsA shows altered domain architecture when compared to the canonical actin fold. FtsA's subdomain 1C replaces subdomain 1B of other members of the actin family and is located on the opposite side of the molecule. Nevertheless, when FtsA assembles into protofilaments, the protofilament structure is preserved, as subdomain 1C replaces subdomain IB of the following subunit in a canonical actin filament. MreB has an essential role in shape-maintenance of most rod-shaped bacteria. Unusually, MreB filaments assemble from two protofilaments in a flat and antiparallel arrangement. This non-polar architecture implies that both MreB filament ends are structurally identical. MreB filaments bind directly to membranes where they interact with both cytosolic and membrane proteins, thereby forming a key component of the elongasome. MreB filaments in cells are short and dynamic, moving around the long axis of rod-shaped cells, sensing curvature of the membrane and being implicated in peptidoglycan synthesis.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Roderick eCard

    2016-05-01

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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David Pérez-Pascual

    2017-08-01

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

  9. Can Clays in Livestock Feed Promote Antibiotic Resistance and Virulence in Pathogenic Bacteria?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alexandro Rodríguez-Rojas

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available The use of antibiotics in animal husbandry has long been associated with the appearance of antibiotic resistance and virulence factor determinants. Nonetheless, the number of cases of human infection involving resistant or virulent microorganisms that originate in farms is increasing. While many antibiotics have been banned as dietary supplements in some countries, other additives thought to be innocuous in terms of the development and spread of antibiotic resistance are used as growth promoters. In fact, several clay materials are routinely added to animal feed with the aim of improving growth and animal product quality. However, recent findings suggest that sepiolite, a clay additive, mediates the direct transfer of plasmids between different bacterial species. We therefore hypothesize that clays present in animal feed facilitate the horizontal transfer of resistance determinants in the digestive tract of farm animals.

  10. The subtilisin-like protease AprV2 is required for virulence and uses a novel disulphide-tethered exosite to bind substrates.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ruth M Kennan

    Full Text Available Many bacterial pathogens produce extracellular proteases that degrade the extracellular matrix of the host and therefore are involved in disease pathogenesis. Dichelobacter nodosus is the causative agent of ovine footrot, a highly contagious disease that is characterized by the separation of the hoof from the underlying tissue. D. nodosus secretes three subtilisin-like proteases whose analysis forms the basis of diagnostic tests that differentiate between virulent and benign strains and have been postulated to play a role in virulence. We have constructed protease mutants of D. nodosus; their analysis in a sheep virulence model revealed that one of these enzymes, AprV2, was required for virulence. These studies challenge the previous hypothesis that the elastase activity of AprV2 is important for disease progression, since aprV2 mutants were virulent when complemented with aprB2, which encodes a variant that has impaired elastase activity. We have determined the crystal structures of both AprV2 and AprB2 and characterized the biological activity of these enzymes. These data reveal that an unusual extended disulphide-tethered loop functions as an exosite, mediating effective enzyme-substrate interactions. The disulphide bond and Tyr92, which was located at the exposed end of the loop, were functionally important. Bioinformatic analyses suggested that other pathogenic bacteria may have proteases that utilize a similar mechanism. In conclusion, we have used an integrated multidisciplinary combination of bacterial genetics, whole animal virulence trials in the original host, biochemical studies, and comprehensive analysis of crystal structures to provide the first definitive evidence that the extracellular secreted proteases produced by D. nodosus are required for virulence and to elucidate the molecular mechanism by which these proteases bind to their natural substrates. We postulate that this exosite mechanism may be used by proteases produced by

  11. Potential drivers of virulence evolution in aquaculture

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2016-01-01

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

  12. Glucose starvation boosts Entamoeba histolytica virulence.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ayala Tovy

    2011-08-01

    Full Text Available The unicellular parasite, Entamoeba histolytica, is exposed to numerous adverse conditions, such as nutrient deprivation, during its life cycle stages in the human host. In the present study, we examined whether the parasite virulence could be influenced by glucose starvation (GS. The migratory behaviour of the parasite and its capability to kill mammalian cells and to lyse erythrocytes is strongly enhanced following GS. In order to gain insights into the mechanism underlying the GS boosting effects on virulence, we analyzed differences in protein expression levels in control and glucose-starved trophozoites, by quantitative proteomic analysis. We observed that upstream regulatory element 3-binding protein (URE3-BP, a transcription factor that modulates E.histolytica virulence, and the lysine-rich protein 1 (KRiP1 which is induced during liver abscess development, are upregulated by GS. We also analyzed E. histolytica membrane fractions and noticed that the Gal/GalNAc lectin light subunit LgL1 is up-regulated by GS. Surprisingly, amoebapore A (Ap-A and cysteine proteinase A5 (CP-A5, two important E. histolytica virulence factors, were strongly down-regulated by GS. While the boosting effect of GS on E. histolytica virulence was conserved in strains silenced for Ap-A and CP-A5, it was lost in LgL1 and in KRiP1 down-regulated strains. These data emphasize the unexpected role of GS in the modulation of E.histolytica virulence and the involvement of KRiP1 and Lgl1 in this phenomenon.

  13. In vivo transcriptional profiling of Listeria monocytogenes and mutagenesis identify new virulence factors involved in infection.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ana Camejo

    2009-05-01

    Full Text Available Listeria monocytogenes is a human intracellular pathogen able to colonize host tissues after ingestion of contaminated food, causing severe invasive infections. In order to gain a better understanding of the nature of host-pathogen interactions, we studied the L. monocytogenes genome expression during mouse infection. In the spleen of infected mice, approximately 20% of the Listeria genome is differentially expressed, essentially through gene activation, as compared to exponential growth in rich broth medium. Data presented here show that, during infection, Listeria is in an active multiplication phase, as revealed by the high expression of genes involved in replication, cell division and multiplication. In vivo bacterial growth requires increased expression of genes involved in adaptation of the bacterial metabolism and stress responses, in particular to oxidative stress. Listeria interaction with its host induces cell wall metabolism and surface expression of virulence factors. During infection, L. monocytogenes also activates subversion mechanisms of host defenses, including resistance to cationic peptides, peptidoglycan modifications and release of muramyl peptides. We show that the in vivo differential expression of the Listeria genome is coordinated by a complex regulatory network, with a central role for the PrfA-SigB interplay. In particular, L. monocytogenes up regulates in vivo the two major virulence regulators, PrfA and VirR, and their downstream effectors. Mutagenesis of in vivo induced genes allowed the identification of novel L. monocytogenes virulence factors, including an LPXTG surface protein, suggesting a role for S-layer glycoproteins and for cadmium efflux system in Listeria virulence.

  14. Virulence Effects and Signaling Partners Modulated by Brucella melitensis Light-sensing Histidine Kinase

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gourley, Christopher R.

    The facultative intracellular pathogen Brucella melitensis utilizes diverse virulence factors. A Brucella light sensing histidine kinase can influence in vitro virulence of the bacteria during intracellular infection. First, we demonstrated that the B. melitensis light sensing kinase (BM-LOV-HK) affects virulence in an IRF-1-/- mouse model of infection. Infection with a Δ BM-LOV-HK strain resulted in less bacterial colonization of IRF-1-/- spleens and extended survivorship compared to mice infected with wild type B. melitensis 16M. Second, using PCR arrays, we observed less expression of innate and adaptive immune system activation markers in ΔBM-LOV-HK infected mouse spleens than wild type B. melitensis 16M infected mouse spleens 6 days after infection. Third, we demonstrated by microarray analysis of B. melitensis that deletion of BM-LOV-HK alters bacterial gene expression. Downregulation of genes involved in control of the general stress response system included the alternative sigma factor RpoE1 and its anti-anti sigma factor PhyR. Conversely, genes involved in flagella production, quorum sensing, and the type IV secretion system (VirB operon) were upregulated in the Δ BM-LOV-HK strain compared to the wild type B. melitensis 16M. Analysis of genes differentially regulated in Δ BM-LOV-HK versus the wild type strain indicated an overlap of 110 genes with data from previous quorum sensing regulator studies of Δ vjbR and/ΔblxR(babR) strains. Also, several predicted RpoE1 binding sites located upstream of genes were differentially regulated in the ΔBM-LOV-HK strain. Our results suggest BM-LOV-HK is important for in vivo Brucella virulence, and reveals that BM-LOV-HK directly or indirect regulates members of the Brucella quorum sensing, type IV secretion, and general stress systems.

  15. Biovar Differentiation and Variation in Virulence of Ralstonia solanacearum Isolates Infecting Solanaceous Vegetables

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ram Devi Timila

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available Bacterial wilt caused by Ralstonia solanacearum E.F. Smith is one of the destructive diseases of solanaceous vegetables specially tomato (Lycopersicon esculentum L. and eggplant (Solanum melongena L.. Experiments were conducted to determine biovar types existing among the strains or isolates of Nepal and variation in virulence in some vegetables belonging to solanaceae family. A total of 39 isolates infecting tomato, eggplant, chilli and potato collected from different parts of Nepal were analyzed for biovar types on the basis of 3 disaccharides and 3 hexose alcohols oxidation test. Experiments were conducted to determine variation in virulence or aggressiveness of some of the isolates under screen house conditions using three host differentials such as Pusa Ruby (susceptible, Bishesh (moderately resistant and Srijana (resistant tomato cultivars. Of the 39 isolates, 23 were biovar III, three biovar II, three biovar IV, and one was biovar I. Nine isolates could not be differentiated into any of the five biovars. For breeding and epidemiological purposes it is very important to analyze the variability of aggressiveness. A total of 5 isolates collected from different places were included in the test. Isolates from Bhaktapur was found the most virulent causing wilt in the variety Bishesh (moderately resistant. Other isolates had the negative impact with zero wilt on the differentials used. Isolates from Jungekhola of Dhading district did not induce wilt even on susceptible variety (Pusa Ruby, but exhibited only senescence reaction. The result indicated that there is some slight variation among the isolates tested. Some effective management tactics might be needed in those locations where highly aggressive or virulent strain of bacterial wilt is prevalent, because resistant variety may not be stable in such locations.

  16. The MogR Transcriptional Repressor Regulates Nonhierarchal Expression of Flagellar Motility Genes and Virulence in Listeria monocytogenes.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    2006-04-01

    Full Text Available Flagella are surface structures critical for motility and virulence of many bacterial species. In Listeria monocytogenes, MogR tightly represses expression of flagellin (FlaA during extracellular growth at 37 degrees C and during intracellular infection. MogR is also required for full virulence in a murine model of infection. Using in vitro and in vivo infection models, we determined that the severe virulence defect of MogR-negative bacteria is due to overexpression of FlaA. Specifically, overproduction of FlaA in MogR-negative bacteria caused pleiotropic defects in bacterial division (chaining phenotype, intracellular spread, and virulence in mice. DNA binding and microarray analyses revealed that MogR represses transcription of all known flagellar motility genes by binding directly to a minimum of two TTTT-N(5-AAAA recognition sites positioned within promoter regions such that RNA polymerase binding is occluded. Analysis of MogR protein levels demonstrated that modulation of MogR repression activity confers the temperature-specificity to flagellar motility gene expression. Epistasis analysis revealed that MogR repression of transcription is antagonized in a temperature-dependent manner by the DegU response regulator and that DegU further regulates FlaA levels through a posttranscriptional mechanism. These studies provide the first known example to our knowledge of a transcriptional repressor functioning as a master regulator controlling nonhierarchal expression of flagellar motility genes.

  17. Modulating the bacterial surface with small RNAs: a new twist on PhoP/Q-mediated lipopolysaccharide modification

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Overgaard, Martin; Kallipolitis, Birgitte; Valentin-Hansen, Poul

    2009-01-01

    Summary In recent years, small non-coding RNAs have emerged as important regulatory components in bacterial stress responses and in bacterial virulence. Many of these are conserved in related species and act on target mRNAs by sequence complementarity. They are tightly controlled at the transcrip...... in enterobacteria and reinforces the idea that one central role of bacterial small regulatory RNAs is to modulate and fine-tune cell surface composition and structure....

  18. 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.

  19. Bacterial nucleotide-based second messengers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pesavento, Christina; Hengge, Regine

    2009-04-01

    In all domains of life nucleotide-based second messengers transduce signals originating from changes in the environment or in intracellular conditions into appropriate cellular responses. In prokaryotes cyclic di-GMP has emerged as an important and ubiquitous second messenger regulating bacterial life-style transitions relevant for biofilm formation, virulence, and many other bacterial functions. This review describes similarities and differences in the architecture of the cAMP, (p)ppGpp, and c-di-GMP signaling systems and their underlying signaling principles. Moreover, recent advances in c-di-GMP-mediated signaling will be presented and the integration of c-di-GMP signaling with other nucleotide-based signaling systems will be discussed.

  20. Vibrio campbellii hmgA-mediated pyomelanization impairs quorum sensing, virulence and cellular fitness

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zheng eWang

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available Melanization due to the inactivation of the homogentisate-1,2-dioxygenase gene (hmgA has been demonstrated to increase stress resistance, persistence and virulence in some bacterial species but such pigmented mutants have not been observed in pathogenic members of the Vibrio Harveyi clade. In this study, we used Vibrio campbellii ATCC BAA-1116 as model organism to understand how melanization affected cellular phenotype, metabolism and virulence. An in-frame deletion of the hmgA gene resulted in the overproduction of a pigment in cell culture supernatants and cellular membranes that was identified as pyomelanin. Unlike previous demonstrations in Vibrio cholerae, Burkholderia cepacia and Pseudomonas aeruginosa, the pigmented V. campbellii mutant did not show increased UV resistance and was found to be ~2.7 times less virulent than the wild type strain in Penaeus monodon shrimp virulence assays. However, the extracted pyomelanin pigment did confer a higher resistance to oxidative stress when incubated with wild type cells. Microarray-based transcriptomic analyses revealed that the hmgA gene deletion and subsequent pyomelanin production negatively effected the expression of 129 genes primarily involved in energy production, amino acid and lipid metabolism, and protein translation and turnover. This transcriptional response was mediated in part by an impairment of the quorum sensing regulon as transcripts of the quorum sensing high cell density master regulator LuxR and other operonic members of this regulon were significantly repressed in the hmgA mutant. Taken together, the results suggest that the pyomelanization of V. campbellii sufficiently impairs the metabolic activities of this organism and renders it less fit and virulent than its isogenic wild type strain.

  1. Vibrio campbellii hmgA-mediated pyomelanization impairs quorum sensing, virulence, and cellular fitness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Zheng; Lin, Baochuan; Mostaghim, Anahita; Rubin, Robert A; Glaser, Evan R; Mittraparp-Arthorn, Pimonsri; Thompson, Janelle R; Vuddhakul, Varaporn; Vora, Gary J

    2013-01-01

    Melanization due to the inactivation of the homogentisate-1,2-dioxygenase gene (hmgA) has been demonstrated to increase stress resistance, persistence, and virulence in some bacterial species but such pigmented mutants have not been observed in pathogenic members of the Vibrio Harveyi clade. In this study, we used Vibrio campbellii ATCC BAA-1116 as model organism to understand how melanization affected cellular phenotype, metabolism, and virulence. An in-frame deletion of the hmgA gene resulted in the overproduction of a pigment in cell culture supernatants and cellular membranes that was identified as pyomelanin. Unlike previous demonstrations in Vibrio cholerae, Burkholderia cepacia, and Pseudomonas aeruginosa, the pigmented V. campbellii mutant did not show increased UV resistance and was found to be ~2.7 times less virulent than the wild type strain in Penaeus monodon shrimp virulence assays. However, the extracted pyomelanin pigment did confer a higher resistance to oxidative stress when incubated with wild type cells. Microarray-based transcriptomic analyses revealed that the hmgA gene deletion and subsequent pyomelanin production negatively effected the expression of 129 genes primarily involved in energy production, amino acid, and lipid metabolism, and protein translation and turnover. This transcriptional response was mediated in part by an impairment of the quorum sensing regulon as transcripts of the quorum sensing high cell density master regulator LuxR and other operonic members of this regulon were significantly less abundant in the hmgA mutant. Taken together, the results suggest that the pyomelanization of V. campbellii sufficiently impairs the metabolic activities of this organism and renders it less fit and virulent than its isogenic wild type strain.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rafael Ambrósio Loures

    2017-08-01

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

  3. Molecular investigation of virulence factors of Brucella melitensis and Brucella abortus strains isolated from clinical and non-clinical samples.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mirnejad, Reza; Jazi, Faramarz Masjedian; Mostafaei, Shayan; Sedighi, Mansour

    2017-08-01

    Brucella is zoonotic pathogen that induces abortion and sterility in domestic mammals and chronic infections in humans called Malta fever. It is a facultative intracellular potential pathogen with high infectivity. The virulence of Brucella is dependent upon its potential virulence factors such as enzymes and cell envelope associated virulence genes. The aim of this study was to investigate the Brucella virulence factors among strains isolated from humans and animals in different parts of Iran. Seventy eight strains of Brucella species isolated from suspected human and animal cases from several provinces of Iran during 2015-2016 and identified by phenotypic and molecular methods. The multiplex-PCR (M-PCR) assay was performed in order to detect the ure, wbkA, omp19, mviN, manA and perA genes by using gene specific primers. Out of 78 isolates of Brucella spp., 57 (73%) and 21 (27%) isolates were detected as B. melitensis and B. abortus, respectively, by molecular method. The relative frequency of virulence genes ure, wbkA, omp19, mviN, manA and perA were 74.4%, 89.7%, 93.6%, 94.9%, 100% and 92.3%, respectively. Our results indicate that the most of Brucella strains isolated from this region possess high percent of virulence factor genes (ure, wbkA, omp19, mviN, manA and perA) in their genome. So, each step of infection can be mediated by a number of virulence factors and each strain may have a unique combination of these factors that affected the rate of bacterial pathogenesis. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  4. Multiple plasmid-borne virulence genes of Clavibacter michiganensis ssp. capsici critical for disease development in pepper.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hwang, In Sun; Oh, Eom-Ji; Kim, Donghyuk; Oh, Chang-Sik

    2018-02-01

    Clavibacter michiganensis ssp. capsici is a Gram-positive plant-pathogenic bacterium causing bacterial canker disease in pepper. Virulence genes and mechanisms of C. michiganensis ssp. capsici in pepper have not yet been studied. To identify virulence genes of C. michiganensis ssp. capsici, comparative genome analyses with C. michiganensis ssp. capsici and its related C. michiganensis subspecies, and functional analysis of its putative virulence genes during infection were performed. The C. michiganensis ssp. capsici type strain PF008 carries one chromosome (3.056 Mb) and two plasmids (39 kb pCM1 Cmc and 145 kb pCM2 Cmc ). The genome analyses showed that this bacterium lacks a chromosomal pathogenicity island and celA gene that are important for disease development by C. michiganensis ssp. michiganensis in tomato, but carries most putative virulence genes in both plasmids. Virulence of pCM1 Cmc -cured C. michiganensis ssp. capsici was greatly reduced compared with the wild-type strain in pepper. The complementation analysis with pCM1 Cmc -located putative virulence genes showed that at least five genes, chpE, chpG, ppaA1, ppaB1 and pelA1, encoding serine proteases or pectate lyase contribute to disease development in pepper. In conclusion, C. michiganensis ssp. capsici has a unique genome structure, and its multiple plasmid-borne genes play critical roles in virulence in pepper, either separately or together. © 2017 The Authors. New Phytologist © 2017 New Phytologist Trust.

  5. Absence of Protoheme IX Farnesyltransferase CtaB Causes Virulence Attenuation but Enhances Pigment Production and Persister Survival in MRSA.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xu, Tao; Han, Jian; Zhang, Jia; Chen, Jiazhen; Wu, Nan; Zhang, Wenhong; Zhang, Ying

    2016-01-01

    The membrane protein CtaB in S. aureus is a protoheme IX farnesyltransferase involved in the synthesis of the heme containing terminal oxidases of bacterial respiratory chain. In this study, to assess the role of CtaB in S. aureus virulence, pigment production, and persister formation, we constructed a ctaB mutant in the methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) strain USA500. We found that deletion of ctaB attenuated growth and virulence in mice but enhanced pigment production and formation of quinolone tolerant persister cells in stationary phase. RNA-seq analysis showed that deletion of ctaB caused decreased transcription of several virulence genes including RNAIII which is consistent with its virulence attenuation. In addition, transcription of 20 ribosomal genes and 24 genes involved in amino acid biosynthesis was significantly down-regulated in the ctaB knockout mutant compared with the parent strain. These findings suggest the importance of heme biosynthesis in virulence and persister formation of S. aureus .

  6. Different distribution patterns of ten virulence genes in Legionella reference strains and strains isolated from environmental water and patients.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhan, Xiao-Yong; Hu, Chao-Hui; Zhu, Qing-Yi

    2016-04-01

    Virulence genes are distinct regions of DNA which are present in the genome of pathogenic bacteria and absent in nonpathogenic strains of the same or related species. Virulence genes are frequently associated with bacterial pathogenicity in genus Legionella. In the present study, an assay was performed to detect ten virulence genes, including iraA, iraB, lvrA, lvrB, lvhD, cpxR, cpxA, dotA, icmC and icmD in different pathogenicity islands of 47 Legionella reference strains, 235 environmental strains isolated from water, and 4 clinical strains isolated from the lung tissue of pneumonia patients. The distribution frequencies of these genes in reference or/and environmental L. pneumophila strains were much higher than those in reference non-L. pneumophila or/and environmental non-L. pneumophila strains, respectively. L. pneumophila clinical strains also maintained higher frequencies of these genes compared to four other types of Legionella strains. Distribution frequencies of these genes in reference L. pneumophila strains were similar to those in environmental L. pneumophila strains. In contrast, environmental non-L. pneumophila maintained higher frequencies of these genes compared to those found in reference non-L. pneumophila strains. This study illustrates the association of virulence genes with Legionella pathogenicity and reveals the possible virulence evolution of non-L. pneumophia strains isolated from environmental water.

  7. Allele-dependent differences in quorum-sensing dynamics result in variant expression of virulence genes in Staphylococcus aureus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Geisinger, Edward; Chen, John; Novick, Richard P

    2012-06-01

    Agr is an autoinducing, quorum-sensing system that functions in many Gram-positive species and is best characterized in the pathogen Staphylococcus aureus, in which it is a global regulator of virulence gene expression. Allelic variations in the agr genes have resulted in the emergence of four quorum-sensing specificity groups in S. aureus, which correlate with different strain pathotypes. The basis for these predilections is unclear but is hypothesized to involve the phenomenon of quorum-sensing interference between strains of different agr groups, which may drive S. aureus strain isolation and divergence. Whether properties intrinsic to each agr allele directly influence virulence phenotypes within S. aureus is unknown. In this study, we examined group-specific differences in agr autoinduction and virulence gene regulation by utilizing congenic strains, each harboring a unique S. aureus agr allele, enabling a dissection of agr locus-dependent versus genotype-dependent effects on quorum-sensing dynamics and virulence factor production. Employing a reporter fusion to the principal agr promoter, P3, we observed allele-dependent differences in the timing and magnitude of agr activation. These differences were mediated by polymorphisms within the agrBDCA genes and translated to significant variations in the expression of a key transcriptional regulator, Rot, and of several important exoproteins and surface factors involved in pathogenesis. This work uncovers the contribution of divergent quorum-sensing alleles to variant expression of virulence determinants within a bacterial species.

  8. Heterologous expression of Streptococcus mutans Cnm in Lactococcus lactis promotes intracellular invasion, adhesion to human cardiac tissues and virulence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Freires, Irlan A; Avilés-Reyes, Alejandro; Kitten, Todd; Simpson-Haidaris, P J; Swartz, Michael; Knight, Peter A; Rosalen, Pedro L; Lemos, José A; Abranches, Jacqueline

    2017-01-02

    In S. mutans, the expression of the surface glycoprotein Cnm mediates binding to extracellular matrix proteins, endothelial cell invasion and virulence in the Galleria mellonella invertebrate model. To further characterize Cnm as a virulence factor, the cnm gene from S. mutans strain OMZ175 was expressed in the non-pathogenic Lactococcus lactis NZ9800 using a nisin-inducible system. Despite the absence of the machinery necessary for Cnm glycosylation, Western blot and immunofluorescence microscopy analyses demonstrated that Cnm was effectively expressed and translocated to the cell wall of L. lactis. Similar to S. mutans, expression of Cnm in L. lactis enabled robust binding to collagen and laminin, invasion of human coronary artery endothelial cells and increased virulence in G. mellonella. Using an ex vivo human heart tissue colonization model, we showed that Cnm-positive strains of either S. mutans or L. lactis outcompete their Cnm-negative counterparts for tissue colonization. Finally, Cnm expression facilitated L. lactis adhesion and colonization in a rabbit model of infective endocarditis. Collectively, our results provide unequivocal evidence that binding to extracellular matrices mediated by Cnm is an important virulence attribute of S. mutans and confirm the usefulness of the L. lactis heterologous system for further characterization of bacterial virulence factors.

  9. The role of CRISPR-Cas systems in virulence of pathogenic bacteria.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Louwen, Rogier; Staals, Raymond H J; Endtz, Hubert P; van Baarlen, Peter; van der Oost, John

    2014-03-01

    Clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeats (CRISPR) and CRISPR-associated (Cas) genes are present in many bacterial and archaeal genomes. Since the discovery of the typical CRISPR loci in the 1980s, well before their physiological role was revealed, their variable sequences have been used as a complementary typing tool in diagnostic, epidemiologic, and evolutionary analyses of prokaryotic strains. The discovery that CRISPR spacers are often identical to sequence fragments of mobile genetic elements was a major breakthrough that eventually led to the elucidation of CRISPR-Cas as an adaptive immunity system. Key elements of this unique prokaryotic defense system are small CRISPR RNAs that guide nucleases to complementary target nucleic acids of invading viruses and plasmids, generally followed by the degradation of the invader. In addition, several recent studies have pointed at direct links of CRISPR-Cas to regulation of a range of stress-related phenomena. An interesting example concerns a pathogenic bacterium that possesses a CRISPR-associated ribonucleoprotein complex that may play a dual role in defense and/or virulence. In this review, we describe recently reported cases of potential involvement of CRISPR-Cas systems in bacterial stress responses in general and bacterial virulence in particular.

  10. Purification and Phytotoxic Analysis of Botrytis cinerea Virulence Factors: New Avenues for Crop Protection

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maria R. Davis

    2012-07-01

    Full Text Available Botrytis cinerea is a necrotrophic fungus infecting over 230 plant species worldwide. This highly adaptable pathogen can afflict agricultural products from seed to storage, causing significant economic losses and instability in the food supply. Small protein virulence factors secreted by B. cinerea during infection play an important role in initiation and spread of disease. BcSnod1 was found to be abundantly expressed upon exposure to media containing strawberry extract. From sequence similarity, BcSnod2 was also identified and both were recognized as members of the Ceratoplatanin family of small phytotoxic proteins. Recombinant BcSnod1 was shown to have a phytotoxic effect and play an important role in pathogenicity while the role of BcSnod2 remains less clear. Both bacterial and yeast production systems are reported, though the bacterial protein is less toxic and mostly unfolded relative to that made in yeast. Compared to BcSnod1, recombinant bacterial BcSnod2 shows similar, but delayed phytotoxicity on tomato leaves. Further studies of these critical virulence factors and their inhibition promise to provide new avenues for crop protection.

  11. The Role of CRISPR-Cas Systems in Virulence of Pathogenic Bacteria

    Science.gov (United States)

    Staals, Raymond H. J.; Endtz, Hubert P.; van Baarlen, Peter; van der Oost, John

    2014-01-01

    SUMMARY Clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeats (CRISPR) and CRISPR-associated (Cas) genes are present in many bacterial and archaeal genomes. Since the discovery of the typical CRISPR loci in the 1980s, well before their physiological role was revealed, their variable sequences have been used as a complementary typing tool in diagnostic, epidemiologic, and evolutionary analyses of prokaryotic strains. The discovery that CRISPR spacers are often identical to sequence fragments of mobile genetic elements was a major breakthrough that eventually led to the elucidation of CRISPR-Cas as an adaptive immunity system. Key elements of this unique prokaryotic defense system are small CRISPR RNAs that guide nucleases to complementary target nucleic acids of invading viruses and plasmids, generally followed by the degradation of the invader. In addition, several recent studies have pointed at direct links of CRISPR-Cas to regulation of a range of stress-related phenomena. An interesting example concerns a pathogenic bacterium that possesses a CRISPR-associated ribonucleoprotein complex that may play a dual role in defense and/or virulence. In this review, we describe recently reported cases of potential involvement of CRISPR-Cas systems in bacterial stress responses in general and bacterial virulence in particular. PMID:24600041

  12. Haemophilus ducreyi Hfq contributes to virulence gene regulation as cells enter stationary phase.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gangaiah, Dharanesh; Labandeira-Rey, Maria; Zhang, Xinjun; Fortney, Kate R; Ellinger, Sheila; Zwickl, Beth; Baker, Beth; Liu, Yunlong; Janowicz, Diane M; Katz, Barry P; Brautigam, Chad A; Munson, Robert S; Hansen, Eric J; Spinola, Stanley M

    2014-02-11

    To adapt to stresses encountered in stationary phase, Gram-negative bacteria utilize the alternative sigma factor RpoS. However, some species lack RpoS; thus, it is unclear how stationary-phase adaptation is regulated in these organisms. Here we defined the growth-phase-dependent transcriptomes of Haemophilus ducreyi, which lacks an RpoS homolog. Compared to mid-log-phase organisms, cells harvested from the stationary phase upregulated genes encoding several virulence determinants and a homolog of hfq. Insertional inactivation of hfq altered the expression of ~16% of the H. ducreyi genes. Importantly, there were a significant overlap and an inverse correlation in the transcript levels of genes differentially expressed in the hfq inactivation mutant relative to its parent and the genes differentially expressed in stationary phase relative to mid-log phase in the parent. Inactivation of hfq downregulated genes in the flp-tad and lspB-lspA2 operons, which encode several virulence determinants. To comply with FDA guidelines for human inoculation experiments, an unmarked hfq deletion mutant was constructed and was fully attenuated for virulence in humans. Inactivation or deletion of hfq downregulated Flp1 and impaired the ability of H. ducreyi to form microcolonies, downregulated DsrA and rendered H. ducreyi serum susceptible, and downregulated LspB and LspA2, which allow H. ducreyi to resist phagocytosis. We propose that, in the absence of an RpoS homolog, Hfq serves as a major contributor of H. ducreyi stationary-phase and virulence gene regulation. The contribution of Hfq to stationary-phase gene regulation may have broad implications for other organisms that lack an RpoS homolog. Pathogenic bacteria encounter a wide range of stresses in their hosts, including nutrient limitation; the ability to sense and respond to such stresses is crucial for bacterial pathogens to successfully establish an infection. Gram-negative bacteria frequently utilize the alternative sigma

  13. Capsule Shields the Function of Short Bacterial Adhesins

    OpenAIRE

    Schembri, Mark A.; Dalsgaard, Dorte; Klemm, Per

    2004-01-01

    Bacterial surface structures such as capsules and adhesins are generally regarded as important virulence factors. Here we demonstrate that capsules block the function of the self-recognizing protein antigen 43 through physical shielding. The phenomenon is not restricted to Escherichia coli but can occur in other gram-negative bacteria. Likewise, we show that other short adhesins exemplified by the AIDA-I protein are blocked by the presence of a capsule. The results support the notion that cap...

  14. Bacterial Contribution in Chronicity of Wounds.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rahim, Kashif; Saleha, Shamim; Zhu, Xudong; Huo, Liang; Basit, Abdul; Franco, Octavio Luiz

    2017-04-01

    A wound is damage of a tissue usually caused by laceration of a membrane, generally the skin. Wound healing is accomplished in three stages in healthy individuals, including inflammatory, proliferative, and remodeling stages. Healing of wounds normally starts from the inflammatory phase and ends up in the remodeling phase, but chronic wounds remain in an inflammatory stage and do not show progression due to some specific reasons. Chronic wounds are classified in different categories, such as diabetic foot ulcer (DFU), venous leg ulcers (VLU) and pressure ulcer (PU), surgical site infection (SSI), abscess, or trauma ulcers. Globally, the incidence rate of DFU is 1-4 % and prevalence rate is 5.3-10.5 %. However, colonization of pathogenic bacteria at the wound site is associated with wound chronicity. Most chronic wounds contain more than one bacterial species and produce a synergetic effect that results in previously non-virulent bacterial species becoming virulent and causing damage to the host. While investigating bacterial diversity in chronic wounds, Staphylococcus, Pseudomonas, Peptoniphilus, Enterobacter, Stenotrophomonas, Finegoldia, and Serratia were found most frequently in chronic wounds. Recently, it has been observed that bacteria in chronic wounds develop biofilms that contribute to a delay in healing. In a mature biofilm, bacteria grow slowly due to deficiency of nutrients that results in the resistance of bacteria to antibiotics. The present review reflects the reasons why acute wounds become chronic. Interesting findings include the bacterial load, which forms biofilms and shows high-level resistance toward antibiotics, which is a threat to human health in general and particularly to some patients who have acute wounds.

  15. The Effects of Chinese Herbal Medicines on the Quorum Sensing-Regulated Virulence in Pseudomonas aeruginosa PAO1

    OpenAIRE

    Yee Meng Chong; Kah Yan How; Wai Fong Yin; Kok Gan Chan

    2018-01-01

    The quorum sensing (QS) system has been used by many opportunistic pathogenic bacteria to coordinate their virulence determinants in relation to cell-population density. As antibiotic-resistant bacteria are on the rise, interference with QS has been regarded as a novel way to control bacterial infections. As such, many plant-based natural products have been widely explored for their therapeutic roles. These natural products may contain anti-QS compounds that could block QS signals generation ...

  16. Models of Caenorhabditis elegans infection by bacterial and fungal pathogens.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Powell, Jennifer R; Ausubel, Frederick M

    2008-01-01

    The nematode Caenorhabditis elegans is a simple model host for studying the relationship between the animal innate immune system and a variety of bacterial and fungal pathogens. Extensive genetic and molecular tools are available in C. elegans, facilitating an in-depth analysis of host defense factors and pathogen virulence factors. Many of these factors are conserved in insects and mammals, indicating the relevance of the nematode model to the vertebrate innate immune response. Here, we describe pathogen assays for a selection of the most commonly studied bacterial and fungal pathogens using the C. elegans model system.

  17. Circumventing Y. pestis Virulence by Early Recruitment of Neutrophils to the Lungs during Pneumonic Plague.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yaron Vagima

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available Pneumonic plague is a fatal disease caused by Yersinia pestis that is associated with a delayed immune response in the lungs. Because neutrophils are the first immune cells recruited to sites of infection, we investigated the mechanisms responsible for their delayed homing to the lung. During the first 24 hr after pulmonary infection with a fully virulent Y. pestis strain, no significant changes were observed in the lungs in the levels of neutrophils infiltrate, expression of adhesion molecules, or the expression of the major neutrophil chemoattractants keratinocyte cell-derived chemokine (KC, macrophage inflammatory protein 2 (MIP-2 and granulocyte colony stimulating factor (G-CSF. In contrast, early induction of chemokines, rapid neutrophil infiltration and a reduced bacterial burden were observed in the lungs of mice infected with an avirulent Y. pestis strain. In vitro infection of lung-derived cell-lines with a YopJ mutant revealed the involvement of YopJ in the inhibition of chemoattractants expression. However, the recruitment of neutrophils to the lungs of mice infected with the mutant was still delayed and associated with rapid bacterial propagation and mortality. Interestingly, whereas KC, MIP-2 and G-CSF mRNA levels in the lungs were up-regulated early after infection with the mutant, their protein levels remained constant, suggesting that Y. pestis may employ additional mechanisms to suppress early chemoattractants induction in the lung. It therefore seems that prevention of the early influx of neutrophils to the lungs is of major importance for Y. pestis virulence. Indeed, pulmonary instillation of KC and MIP-2 to G-CSF-treated mice infected with Y. pestis led to rapid homing of neutrophils to the lung followed by a reduction in bacterial counts at 24 hr post-infection and improved survival rates. These observations shed new light on the virulence mechanisms of Y. pestis during pneumonic plague, and have implications for the

  18. Spaceflight Causes Increased Virulence of Serratia Marcescens on a Drosophila Melanogaster Host

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bhattacharya, Sharmila; Wade, William; Clemens-Grisham, Rachel; Hosamani, Ravikumar; Bhardwaj, Shilpa R.; Lera, Matthew P.; Gresser, Amy L.

    2015-01-01

    Drosophila melanogaster, or the fruit fly, has long been an important organism for Earth-based research, and is now increasingly utilized as a model system to understand the biological effects of spaceflight. Studies in Drosophila melanogaster have shown altered immune responses in 3rd instar larvae and adult males following spaceflight, changes similar to those observed in astronauts. In addition, spaceflight has also been shown to affect bacterial physiology, as evidenced by studies describing altered virulence of Salmonella typhimurium following spaceflight and variation in biofilm growth patterns for the opportunistic pathogen Pseudomonas aeruginosa during flight. We recently sent Serratia marcescens Db11, a Drosophila pathogen and an opportunistic human pathogen, to the ISS on SpaceX-5 (Fruit Fly Lab-01). S. marcescens samples were stored at 4degC for 24 days on-orbit and then allowed to grow for 120 hours at ambient station temperature before being returned to Earth. Upon return, bacteria were isolated and preserved in 50% glycerol or RNAlater. Storage, growth, and isolation for ground control samples were performed using the same procedures. Spaceflight and ground samples stored in 50% glycerol were diluted and injected into 5-7-day-old ground-born adult D. melanogaster. Lethality was significantly greater in flies injected with the spaceflight samples compared to those injected with ground bacterial samples. These results indicate a shift in the virulence profile of the spaceflight S. marcescens Db11 and will be further assessed with molecular biological analyses. Our findings strengthen the conclusion that spaceflight impacts the virulence of bacterial pathogens on model host organisms such as the fruit fly. This research was supported by NASA's ISS Program Office (ISSPO) and Space Life and Physical Sciences Research and Applications (SLPSRA).

  19. The Toxin and Virulence Database: A Resource for Signature Development and Analysis of Virulence

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Wolinsky, Murray A

    2004-01-01

    In this joint effort with the University of Alabama at Birmingham, Walter Reed, MITRE and USAMRIID, we are developing a comprehensive database for microbial toxins and virulence factors (www.tvfac.lanl.gov...

  20. Are secondary metabolites dispensable for virulence?

    Science.gov (United States)

    The production of toxins by conidial fungal pathogens and their association with virulence has been assumed to occur in vivo and is widely accepted as dogma, but this association has yet to be definitively proven by either genetic or chemical means. Several studies from our labs have used targeted g...

  1. Mechanisms of disease: Helicobacter pylori virulence factors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yamaoka, Yoshio

    2010-11-01

    Helicobacter pylori plays an essential role in the development of various gastroduodenal diseases; however, only a small proportion of people infected with H. pylori develop these diseases. Some populations that have a high prevalence of H. pylori infection also have a high incidence of gastric cancer (for example, in East Asia), whereas others do not (for example, in Africa and South Asia). Even within East Asia, the incidence of gastric cancer varies (decreasing in the south). H. pylori is a highly heterogeneous bacterium and its virulence varies geographically. Geographic differences in the incidence of gastric cancer can be explained, at least in part, by the presence of different types of H. pylori virulence factor, especially CagA, VacA and OipA. However, it is still unclear why the pathogenicity of H. pylori increased as it migrated from Africa to East Asia during the course of evolution. H. pylori infection is also thought to be involved in the development of duodenal ulcer, which is at the opposite end of the disease spectrum to gastric cancer. This discrepancy can be explained in part by the presence of H. pylori virulence factor DupA. Despite advances in our understanding of the development of H. pylori-related diseases, further work is required to clarify the roles of H. pylori virulence factors.

  2. NEW VIRULENCE FACTORS OF STREPTOCOCCUS PNEUMONIAE

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hermans, Peter Wilhelmus Maria; Bootsma, Jeanette Hester; Burghout, Pieter Jan; Kuipers, Oscar; Bijlsma, Johanna Jacoba Elisabeth; Kloosterman, Tomas Gerrit; Andersen, Christian O.

    2011-01-01

    The present invention provides proteins/genes, which are essential for survival, and consequently, for virulence of Streptococcus pneumoniae in vivo, and thus are ideal vaccine candidates for a vaccine preparation against pneumococcal infection. Further, also antibodies against said protein(s) are

  3. Sensitive Detection of Deliquescent Bacterial Capsules through Nanomechanical Analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nguyen, Song Ha; Webb, Hayden K

    2015-10-20

    Encapsulated bacteria usually exhibit strong resistance to a wide range of sterilization methods, and are often virulent. Early detection of encapsulation can be crucial in microbial pathology. This work demonstrates a fast and sensitive method for the detection of encapsulated bacterial cells. Nanoindentation force measurements were used to confirm the presence of deliquescent bacterial capsules surrounding bacterial cells. Force/distance approach curves contained characteristic linear-nonlinear-linear domains, indicating cocompression of the capsular layer and cell, indentation of the capsule, and compression of the cell alone. This is a sensitive method for the detection and verification of the encapsulation status of bacterial cells. Given that this method was successful in detecting the nanomechanical properties of two different layers of cell material, i.e. distinguishing between the capsule and the remainder of the cell, further development may potentially lead to the ability to analyze even thinner cellular layers, e.g. lipid bilayers.

  4. Signal Integration in Quorum Sensing Enables Cross-Species Induction of Virulence in Pectobacterium wasabiae.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Valente, Rita S; Nadal-Jimenez, Pol; Carvalho, André F P; Vieira, Filipe J D; Xavier, Karina B

    2017-05-23

    Bacterial communities can sense their neighbors, regulating group behaviors in response to cell density and environmental changes. The diversity of signaling networks in a single species has been postulated to allow custom responses to different stimuli; however, little is known about how multiple signals are integrated and the implications of this integration in different ecological contexts. In the plant pathogen Pectobacterium wasabiae (formerly Erwinia carotovora ), two signaling networks-the N-acyl homoserine lactone (AHL) quorum-sensing system and the Gac/Rsm signal transduction pathway-control the expression of secreted plant cell wall-degrading enzymes, its major virulence determinants. We show that the AHL system controls the Gac/Rsm system by affecting the expression of the regulatory RNA RsmB. This regulation is mediated by ExpR2, the quorum-sensing receptor that responds to the P. wasabiae cognate AHL but also to AHLs produced by other bacterial species. As a consequence, this level of regulation allows P. wasabiae to bypass the Gac-dependent regulation of RsmB in the presence of exogenous AHLs or AHL-producing bacteria. We provide in vivo evidence that this pivotal role of RsmB in signal transduction is important for the ability of P. wasabiae to induce virulence in response to other AHL-producing bacteria in multispecies plant lesions. Our results suggest that the signaling architecture in P. wasabiae was coopted to prime the bacteria to eavesdrop on other bacteria and quickly join the efforts of other species, which are already exploiting host resources. IMPORTANCE Quorum-sensing mechanisms enable bacteria to communicate through small signal molecules and coordinate group behaviors. Often, bacteria have various quorum-sensing receptors and integrate information with other signal transduction pathways, presumably allowing them to respond to different ecological contexts. The plant pathogen Pectobacterium wasabiae has two N-acyl homoserine lactone

  5. Helicobacter pylori virulence genes and microevolution in host and the clinical outcome: review article

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Seyedeh Zahra Bakhti

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori is the causative agent in development of gastroduode-nal diseases, such as chronic atrophic gastritis, peptic ulcers, mucosa associated lym-phoid tissue (MALT lymphoma, and gastric cancer. H. pylori has been associated with inflammation in cardia, showing the fact that infection with this bacterium could also be a risk factor for gastric cardia cancer. Gastric cancer is the fourth most common cancer worldwide. This is the second leading cause of cancer-related deaths, and ap-proximately 700,000 people succumb each year to gastric adenocarcinoma. It has been estimated that 69% of the Iranian population currently harbor H. pylori infection. The prevalence of duodenal ulcer and gastric cancer is high in Iranian populations. However, this has been largely influenced by geographic and/or ethnic origin. Epidemi-ology studies have shown that host, environmental, and bacterial factors determine the outcome of H. pylori infection. The bacterium contains allelic diversity and high genet-ic variability into core- and virulence-genes and that this diversity is geographically and ethnically structured. The genetic diversity within H. pylori is greater than within most other bacteria, and its diversity is more than 50-fold higher than that of human DNA. The maintenance of high diversification makes this bacterium to cope with particular challenges in individual hosts. It has been reported that the recombination contributed to the creation of new genes and gene family. Furthermore, the microevolution in cagA and vacA genes is a common event, leading to a change in the virulence phenotype. These factors contribute to the bacterial survival in acidic conditions in stomach and protect it from host immune system, causing tissue damage and clinical disease. In this review article, we discussed the correlation between H. pylori virulence factors and clin-ical outcomes, microevolution of H. pylori virulence genes in a single host

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

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

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

    2009-01-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sternkopf Lillebæk, Eva Maria; Lambert Nielsen, Stine; Scheel Thomasen, Rikke; Færgeman, Nils J; Kallipolitis, Birgitte H

    The foodborne pathogen Listeria monocytogenes is the causative agent of the invasive disease listeriosis. Infection by L. monocytogenes involves bacterial crossing of the intestinal barrier and intracellular replication in a variety of host cells. The PrfA protein is the master regulator of virulence factors required for bacterial entry, intracellular replication and cell-to-cell spread. PrfA-dependent activation of virulence genes occurs primarily in the blood and during intracellular infection. In contrast, PrfA does not play a significant role in regulation of virulence gene expression in the intestinal environment. In the gastrointestinal phase of infection, the bacterium encounters a variety of antimicrobial agents, including medium- and long-chain free fatty acids that are commonly found in our diet and as active components of bile. Here we show that subinhibitory concentrations of specific antimicrobial free fatty acids act to downregulate transcription of PrfA-activated virulence genes. Interestingly, the inhibitory effect is also evident in cells encoding a constitutively active variant of PrfA. Collectively, our data suggest that antimicrobial medium- and long-chain free fatty acids may act as signals to prevent PrfA-mediated activation of virulence genes in environments where PrfA activation is not required, such as in food and the gastrointestinal tract. Copyright © 2017 Institut Pasteur. Published by Elsevier Masson SAS. All rights reserved.

  8. Analysis of the Bacterial Diversity in Liver Abscess: Differences between Pyogenic and Amebic Abscesses

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reyna-Fabián, Miriam E.; Zermeño, Valeria; Ximénez, Cecilia; Flores, Janin; Romero, Miguel F.; Diaz, Daniel; Argueta, Jesús; Moran, Patricia; Valadez, Alicia; Cerritos, René

    2016-01-01

    Several recent studies have demonstrated that virulence in Entamoeba histolytica is triggered in the presence of both pathogenic and nonpathogenic bacteria species using in vitro and in vivo experimental animal models. In this study, we examined samples aspirated from abscess material obtained from patients who were clinically diagnosed with amebic liver abscess (ALA) or pyogenic liver abscess (PLA). To determine the diversity of bacterial species in the abscesses, we performed partial 16S rRNA gene sequencing. In addition, the E. histolytica and Entamoeba dispar species were genotyped using tRNA-linked short tandem repeats as specific molecular markers. The association between clinical data and bacterial and parasite genotypes were examined through a correspondence analysis. The results showed the presence of numerous bacterial groups. These taxonomic groups constitute common members of the gut microbiota, although all of the detected bacterial species have a close phylogenetic relationship with bacterial pathogens. Furthermore, some patients clinically diagnosed with PLA and ALA were coinfected with E. dispar or E. histolytica, which suggests that the virulence of these parasites increased in the presence of bacteria. However, no specific bacterial groups were associated with this effect. Together, our results suggest a nonspecific mechanism of virulence modulation by bacteria in Entamoeba. PMID:26572872

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ren, Jun; Prescott, John F

    2004-11-15

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

  10. Bacterial communications in implant infections: a target for an intelligence war.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Costerton, J W; Montanaro, L; Arciola, C R

    2007-09-01

    The status of population density is communicated among bacteria by specific secreted molecules, called pheromones or autoinducers, and the control mechanism is called "quorum-sensing". Quorum-sensing systems regulate the expression of a panel of genes, allowing bacteria to adapt to modified environmental conditions at a high density of population. The two known different quorum systems are described as the LuxR-LuxI system in gram-negative bacteria, which uses an N-acyl-homoserine lactone (AHL) as signal, and the agr system in gram-positive bacteria, which uses a peptide-tiolactone as signal and the RNAIII as effector molecules. Both in gram-negative and in gram-positive bacteria, quorum-sensing systems regulate the expression of adhesion mechanisms (biofilm and adhesins) and virulence factors (toxins and exoenzymes) depending on population cell density. In gram-negative Pseudomonas aeruginosa, analogs of signaling molecules such as furanone analogs, are effective in attenuating bacterial virulence and controlling bacterial infections. In grampositive Staphylococcus aureus, the quorum-sensing RNAIII-inhibiting peptide (RIP), tested in vitro and in animal infection models, has been proved to inhibit virulence and prevent infections. Attenuation of bacterial virulence by quorum-sensing inhibitors, rather than by bactericidal or bacteriostatic drugs, is a highly attractive concept because these antibacterial agents are less likely to induce the development of bacterial resistance.

  11. A Phosphorylation Switch on Lon Protease Regulates Bacterial Type III Secretion System in Host

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xiaofeng Zhou

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available Most pathogenic bacteria deliver virulence factors into host cytosol through type III secretion systems (T3SS to perturb host immune responses. The expression of T3SS is often repressed in rich medium but is specifically induced in the host environment. The molecular mechanisms underlying host-specific induction of T3SS expression is not completely understood. Here we demonstrate in Xanthomonas citri that host-induced phosphorylation of the ATP-dependent protease Lon stabilizes HrpG, the master regulator of T3SS, conferring bacterial virulence. Ser/Thr/Tyr phosphoproteome analysis revealed that phosphorylation of Lon at serine 654 occurs in the citrus host. In rich medium, Lon represses T3SS by degradation of HrpG via recognition of its N terminus. Genetic and biochemical data indicate that phosphorylation at serine 654 deactivates Lon proteolytic activity and attenuates HrpG proteolysis. Substitution of alanine for Lon serine 654 resulted in repression of T3SS gene expression in the citrus host through robust degradation of HrpG and reduced bacterial virulence. Our work reveals a novel mechanism for distinct regulation of bacterial T3SS in different environments. Additionally, our data provide new insight into the role of protein posttranslational modification in the regulation of bacterial virulence.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chika C Nwugo

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

  13. Regulation of Yersina pestis Virulence by AI-2 Mediated Quorum Sensing

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Segelke, B; Hok, S; Lao, V; Corzett, M; Garcia, E

    2010-03-29

    The proposed research was motivated by an interest in understanding Y. pestis virulence mechanisms and bacteria cell-cell communication. It is expected that a greater understanding of virulence mechanisms will ultimately lead to biothreat countermeasures and novel therapeutics. Y. pestis is the etiological agent of plague, the most devastating disease in human history. Y. pestis infection has a high mortality rate and a short incubation before mortality. There is no widely available and effective vaccine for Y. pestis and multi-drug resistant strains are emerging. Y. pestis is a recognized biothreat agent based on the wide distribution of the bacteria in research laboratories around the world and on the knowledge that methods exist to produce and aerosolize large amounts of bacteria. We hypothesized that cell-cell communication via signaling molecules, or quorum sensing, by Y. pestis is important for the regulation of virulence factor gene expression during host invasion, though a causative link had never been established. Quorum sensing is a mode of intercellular communication which enables orchestration of gene expression for many bacteria as a function of population density and available evidence suggests there may be a link between quorum sensing and regulation of Y. pesits virulence. Several pathogenic bacteria have been shown to regulate expression of virulence factor genes, including genes encoding type III secretion, via quorum sensing. The Y. pestis genome encodes several cell-cell signaling pathways and the interaction of at least three of these are thought to be involved in one or more modes of host invasion. Furthermore, Y. pestis gene expression array studies carried out at LLNL have established a correlation between expression of known virulence factors and genes involved in processing of the AI-2 quorum sensing signal. This was a basic research project that was intended to provide new insights into bacterial intercellular communication and how it is

  14. Genomic Changes Associated with the Loss of Nocardia brasiliensis Virulence in Mice after 200 In Vitro Passages.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gonzalez-Carrillo, Carolina; Millan-Sauceda, Cassandra; Lozano-Garza, Hector Gerardo; Ortiz-Lopez, Rocio; Elizondo-Gonzalez, Ramiro; Welsh, Oliverio; Ocampo-Candiani, Jorge; Vera-Cabrera, Lucio

    2016-09-01

    Nocardia species, particularly Nocardia brasiliensis, are etiologic agents of mycetoma, a chronic subcutaneous infection. Until now, little has been known about the pathogenic mechanisms involved in nocardial infection. Traditionally, subculture in rich media has been a simple way to induce attenuation. In this work, we report the changes in virulence toward mice and in genomic constitution of N. brasiliensis produced after 200 continuous subcultures in brain heart infusion (BHI) medium (P-200 strain). The ability of the N. brasiliensis P-200 strain to produce experimental infection was tested using BALB/c mice. P-200 was also used to immunize mice to determine whether it could induce resistance against a challenge with a nonsubcultured isolate (P-0). Comparative proteomic analysis between N. brasiliensis P-0 and P-200 was performed by two-dimensional (2-D) electrophoresis, and the genome sequence was obtained through Roche 454 sequence analysis. Virulence in BALB/c mice was completely lost, and BALB/c mice immunized with P-200 bacterial cells were resistant to mycetoma production by the nonsubcultured strain. Whole-genome sequence analysis revealed that P-200 lost a total of 262,913 bp distributed in 19 deleted regions, involving a total of 213 open reading frames (ORFs). The deleted genes included those encoding bacterial virulence factors, e.g., catalase, nitrate reductase enzymes, and a group of mammalian cell entry (MCE) family proteins, which may explain the loss of virulence of the isolate. Thus, completely attenuated N. brasiliensis was obtained after 200 passages in BHI medium, and putative Nocardia virulence genes were identified for the first time. Copyright © 2016, American Society for Microbiology. All Rights Reserved.

  15. Virulence genes in a probiotic E. coli product with a recorded long history of safe use

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zschüttig, Anke; Beimfohr, Claudia; Geske, Thomas; Auerbach, Christian; Cook, Helen; Zimmermann, Kurt; Gunzer, Florian

    2015-01-01

    The probiotic product Symbioflor2 (DSM 17252) is a bacterial concentrate of six different Escherichia coli genotypes, whose complete genome sequences are compared here, between each other as well as to other E. coli genomes. The genome sequences of Symbioflor2 E. coli components contained a number of virulence-associated genes. Their presence seems to be in conflict with a recorded history of safe use, and with the observed low frequency of adverse effects over a period of more than 6 years. The genome sequences were used to identify unique sequences for each component, for which strain-specific hybridization probes were designed. A colonization study was conducted whereby five volunteers were exposed to an exceptionally high single dose. The results showed that the probiotic E. coli could be detected for 3 months or longer in their stools, and this was in particular the case for those components containing higher numbers of virulence-associated genes. Adverse effects from this long-term colonization were absent. Thus, the presence of the identified virulence genes does not result in a pathogenic phenotype in the genetic background of these probiotic E. coli. PMID:25883796

  16. Bacteriological and virulence study of a Mycobacterium chimaera isolate from a patient in China.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Guan; Chen, Su-Ting; Yu, Xia; Li, Yu-Xun; Ling, Ying; Dong, Ling-Ling; Zheng, Su-Hua; Huang, Hai-Rong

    2015-04-01

    A clinical isolate from a patient was identified as Mycobacterium chimaera, a recently identified species of nontuberculous Mycobacteria. The biochemical and molecular identity, drug sensitivity and virulence of this isolated strain were investigated. 16S rRNA, the 16S-23S ITS, hsp65 and rpoB were amplified, and their sequence similarities with other mycobacteria were analyzed. The minimum inhibitory concentrations of 22 anti-microbial agents against this isolate were established, and the virulence of the isolate was evaluated by intravenous injection into C57BL/6 mice using Mycobacterium tuberculosis H37Rv as a control strain. Growth and morphological characteristics and mycolic acid profile analysis revealed that this isolated strain was a member of the Mycobacterium avium complex. BLAST analysis of the amplified sequences showed that the isolated strain was closely related to M. chimaera. Susceptibility testing showed that the isolate was sensitive to rifabutin, rifapentine, clarithromycin, azithromycin, imipenem and cefoxitin. Bacterial load determination and tissue histopathology of the infected mice indicated that the isolate was highly virulent. The first case of M. chimaera infection in China was evaluated. The information derived from this case may offer valuable guidance for clinical diagnosis and treatment.

  17. VarR controls colonization and virulence in the marine macroalgal pathogen Nautella italica R11

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Melissa eGardiner

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available There is increasing evidence to suggest that macroalgae (seaweeds are susceptible to infectious disease. However, to date, little is known about the mechanisms that facilitate the colonization and virulence of microbial seaweed pathogens. One well-described example of a seaweed disease is the bleaching of the red alga Delisea pulchra, which can be caused by the bacterium Nautella italica R11, a member of the Roseobacter clade. This pathogen contains a unique luxR-type gene, varR, which we hypothesize controls its colonization and virulence. We show here that a varR knock-out strain is deficient in its ability to cause disease in D. pulchra and is defective in biofilm formation and attachment to a common algal polysaccharide. Moreover complementation of the varR gene in trans can restore these functions to the wild type levels. Proteomic analysis of bacterial cells in planktonic and biofilm growth highlight the potential importance of nitrogen scavenging, mobilization of energy reserves, and stress resistance in the biofilm lifestyle of N. italica R11. Moreover, we show that VarR regulates the expression of a specific subset of biofilm-associated proteins. Taken together these data suggest that VarR controls colonization and persistence of N. italica R11 on the surface of a macroalgal host and that it is an important regulator of virulence.

  18. Coregulation of host-adapted metabolism and virulence by pathogenic yersiniae

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heroven, Ann Kathrin; Dersch, Petra

    2014-01-01

    Deciphering the principles how pathogenic bacteria adapt their metabolism to a specific host microenvironment is critical for understanding bacterial pathogenesis. The enteric pathogenic Yersinia species Yersinia pseudotuberculosis and Yersinia enterocolitica and the causative agent of plague, Yersinia pestis, are able to survive in a large variety of environmental reservoirs (e.g., soil, plants, insects) as well as warm-blooded animals (e.g., rodents, pigs, humans) with a particular preference for lymphatic tissues. In order to manage rapidly changing environmental conditions and interbacterial competition, Yersinia senses the nutritional composition during the course of an infection by special molecular devices, integrates this information and adapts its metabolism accordingly. In addition, nutrient availability has an impact on expression of virulence genes in response to C-sources, demonstrating a tight link between the pathogenicity of yersiniae and utilization of nutrients. Recent studies revealed that global regulatory factors such as the cAMP receptor protein (Crp) and the carbon storage regulator (Csr) system are part of a large network of transcriptional and posttranscriptional control strategies adjusting metabolic changes and virulence in response to temperature, ion and nutrient availability. Gained knowledge about the specific metabolic requirements and the correlation between metabolic and virulence gene expression that enable efficient host colonization led to the identification of new potential antimicrobial targets. PMID:25368845

  19. A virulent clone of Devriesea agamarum affects endangered Lesser Antillean iguanas (Iguana delicatissima).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hellebuyck, Tom; Questel, Karl; Pasmans, Frank; Brantegem, Leen Van; Philip, Pascal; Martel, An

    2017-10-02

    Infectious diseases affecting wildlife are drivers of global biodiversity loss. Here we report a bacterial threat to endangered wild reptiles. Since April 2011, a severe skin disease has affected free-ranging, endangered Lesser Antillean iguanas (Iguana delicatissima) on the French Caribbean island of Saint Barthélemy and we identified Devriesea agamarum as the causative agent. The presence of this bacterium was also demonstrated in healthy lizards (anoles) co-inhabiting the island. All isolates from the iguanas corresponded to a single AFLP genotype that until now has exclusively been associated with infections in lizard species in captivity. The clonal relatedness of the isolates and recent emergence of the disease suggest recent arrival of a virulent D. agamarum clone on the island. The presence of healthy but infected lizards suggests the presence of asymptomatic reservoir hosts. This is the first description of a bacterial disease that poses a conservation threat towards free-ranging squamates.

  20. Anti-biofilm, anti-hemolysis, and anti-virulence activities of black pepper, cananga, myrrh oils, and nerolidol against Staphylococcus aureus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Kayeon; Lee, Jin-Hyung; Kim, Soon-Il; Cho, Moo Hwan; Lee, Jintae

    2014-11-01

    The long-term usage of antibiotics has resulted in the evolution of multidrug-resistant bacteria. Unlike antibiotics, anti-virulence approaches target bacterial virulence without affecting cell viability, which may be less prone to develop drug resistance. Staphylococcus aureus is a major human pathogen that produces diverse virulence factors, such as α-toxin, which is hemolytic. Also, biofilm formation of S. aureus is one of the mechanisms of its drug resistance. In this study, anti-biofilm screening of 83 essential oils showed that black pepper, cananga, and myrrh oils and their common constituent cis-nerolidol at 0.01 % markedly inhibited S. aureus biofilm formation. Furthermore, the three essential oils and cis-nerolidol at below 0.005 % almost abolished the hemolytic activity of S. aureus. Transcriptional analyses showed that black pepper oil down-regulated the expressions of the α-toxin gene (hla), the nuclease genes, and the regulatory genes. In addition, black pepper, cananga, and myrrh oils and cis-nerolidol attenuated S. aureus virulence in the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans. This study is one of the most extensive on anti-virulence screening using diverse essential oils and provides comprehensive data on the subject. This finding implies other beneficial effects of essential oils and suggests that black pepper, cananga, and myrrh oils have potential use as anti-virulence strategies against persistent S. aureus infections.

  1. Molecular basis of virulence in Staphylococcus aureus mastitis.

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    Caroline Le Maréchal

    Full Text Available S. aureus is one of the main pathogens involved in ruminant mastitis worldwide. The severity of staphylococcal infection is highly variable, ranging from subclinical to gangrenous mastitis. This work represents an in-depth characterization of S. aureus mastitis isolates to identify bacterial factors involved in severity of mastitis infection.We employed genomic, transcriptomic and proteomic approaches to comprehensively compare two clonally related S. aureus strains that reproducibly induce severe (strain O11 and milder (strain O46 mastitis in ewes. Variation in the content of mobile genetic elements, iron acquisition and metabolism, transcriptional regulation and exoprotein production was observed. In particular, O11 produced relatively high levels of exoproteins, including toxins and proteases known to be important in virulence. A characteristic we observed in other S. aureus strains isolated from clinical mastitis cases.Our data are consistent with a dose-dependant role of some staphylococcal factors in the hypervirulence of strains isolated from severe mastitis. Mobile genetic elements, transcriptional regulators, exoproteins and iron acquisition pathways constitute good targets for further research to define the underlying mechanisms of mastitis severity.

  2. Na+/H+ antiport is essential for Yersinia pestis virulence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Minato, Yusuke; Ghosh, Amit; Faulkner, Wyatt J; Lind, Erin J; Schesser Bartra, Sara; Plano, Gregory V; Jarrett, Clayton O; Hinnebusch, B Joseph; Winogrodzki, Judith; Dibrov, Pavel; Häse, Claudia C

    2013-09-01

    Na(+)/H(+) antiporters are ubiquitous membrane proteins that play a central role in the ion homeostasis of cells. In this study, we examined the possible role of Na(+)/H(+) antiport in Yersinia pestis virulence and found that Y. pestis strains lacking the major Na(+)/H(+) antiporters, NhaA and NhaB, are completely attenuated in an in vivo model of plague. The Y. pestis derivative strain lacking the nhaA and nhaB genes showed markedly decreased survival in blood and blood serum ex vivo. Complementation of either nhaA or nhaB in trans restored the survival of the Y. pestis nhaA nhaB double deletion mutant in blood. The nhaA nhaB double deletion mutant also showed inhibited growth in an artificial serum medium, Opti-MEM, and a rich LB-based medium with Na(+) levels and pH values similar to those for blood. Taken together, these data strongly suggest that intact Na(+)/H(+) antiport is indispensable for the survival of Y. pestis in the bloodstreams of infected animals and thus might be regarded as a promising noncanonical drug target for infections caused by Y. pestis and possibly for those caused by other blood-borne bacterial pathogens.

  3. Dual RNA regulatory control of a Staphylococcus aureus virulence factor.

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    Chabelskaya, Svetlana; Bordeau, Valérie; Felden, Brice

    2014-04-01

    In pathogens, the accurate programming of virulence gene expression is essential for infection. It is achieved by sophisticated arrays of regulatory proteins and ribonucleic acids (sRNAs), but in many cases their contributions and connections are not yet known. Based on genetic, biochemical and structural evidence, we report that the expression pattern of a Staphylococcus aureus host immune evasion protein is enabled by the collaborative actions of RNAIII and small pathogenicity island RNA D (SprD). Their combined expression profiles during bacterial growth permit early and transient synthesis of Sbi to avoid host immune responses. Together, these two sRNAs use antisense mechanisms to monitor Sbi expression at the translational level. Deletion analysis combined with structural analysis of RNAIII in complex with its novel messenger RNA (mRNA) target indicate that three distant RNAIII domains interact with distinct sites of the sbi mRNA and that two locations are deep in the sbi coding region. Through distinct domains, RNAIII lowers production of two proteins required for avoiding innate host immunity, staphylococcal protein A and Sbi. Toeprints and in vivo mutational analysis reveal a novel regulatory module within RNAIII essential for attenuation of Sbi translation. The sophisticated translational control of mRNA by two differentially expressed sRNAs ensures supervision of host immune escape by a major pathogen.

  4. The exoribonuclease Polynucleotide Phosphorylase influences the virulence and stress responses of yersiniae and many other pathogens

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    Jason A. Rosenzweig

    2013-11-01

    Full Text Available Microbes are incessantly challenged by both biotic and abiotic stressors threatening their existence. Therefore, bacterial pathogens must possess mechanisms to successfully subvert host immune defenses as well as overcome the stress associated with host-cell encounters. To achieve this, bacterial pathogens typically experience a genetic re-programming whereby anti-host/stress factors become expressed and eventually translated into effector proteins. In that vein, the bacterial host-cell induced stress-response is similar to any other abiotic stress to which bacteria respond by up-regulating specific stress-responsive genes. Following the stress encounter, bacteria must degrade unnecessary stress responsive transcripts through RNA decay mechanisms. The 3 pathogenic yersiniae (Yersinia pestis, Y. pseudo-tuberculosis, and Y. enterocolitica are all psychrotropic bacteria capable of growth at 4˚C; however, cold growth is dependent on the presence of an exoribonuclease, polynucleotide phosphorylase (PNPase. PNPase has also been implicated as a virulence factor in several notable pathogens including the salmonellae, Helicobacter pylori, and the yersiniae (where it typically influences the type three secretion system. Further, PNPase has been shown to associate with ribonuclease E (endoribonuclease, RhlB (RNA helicase, and enolase (glycolytic enzyme in several Gram-negative bacteria forming a large, multi-protein complex known as the RNA degradosome. This review will highlight studies demonstrating the influence of PNPase on the virulence potentials and stress responses of various bacterial pathogens as well as focusing on the degradosome- dependent and -independent roles played by PNPase in yersiniae stress responses.

  5. Characterization of virulence factor regulation by SrrAB, a two-component system in Staphylococcus aureus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pragman, Alexa A; Yarwood, Jeremy M; Tripp, Timothy J; Schlievert, Patrick M

    2004-04-01

    Workers in our laboratory have previously identified the staphylococcal respiratory response AB (SrrAB), a Staphylococcus aureus two-component system that acts in the global regulation of virulence factors. This system down-regulates production of agr RNAIII, protein A, and toxic shock syndrome toxin 1 (TSST-1), particularly under low-oxygen conditions. In this study we investigated the localization and membrane orientation of SrrA and SrrB, transcription of the srrAB operon, the DNA-binding properties of SrrA, and the effect of SrrAB expression on S. aureus virulence. We found that SrrA is localized to the S. aureus cytoplasm, while SrrB is localized to the membrane and is properly oriented to function as a histidine kinase. srrAB has one transcriptional start site which results in either an srrA transcript or a full-length srrAB transcript; srrB must be cotranscribed with srrA. Gel shift assays of the agr P2, agr P3, protein A (spa), TSST-1 (tst), and srr promoters revealed SrrA binding at each of these promoters. Analysis of SrrAB-overexpressing strains by using the rabbit model of bacterial endocarditis demonstrated that overexpression of SrrAB decreased the virulence of the organisms compared to the virulence of isogenic strains that do not overexpress SrrAB. We concluded that SrrAB is properly localized and oriented to function as a two-component system. Overexpression of SrrAB, which represses agr RNAIII, TSST-1, and protein A in vitro, decreases virulence in the rabbit endocarditis model. Repression of these virulence factors is likely due to a direct interaction between SrrA and the agr, tst, and spa promoters.

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

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    Jennifer K Bender

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

  7. Isocitrate dehydrogenase mutation in Vibrio anguillarum results in virulence attenuation and immunoprotection in rainbow trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mou, Xiangyu; Spinard, Edward J; Hillman, Shelby L; Nelson, David R

    2017-11-14

    Vibrio anguillarum is an extracellular bacterial pathogen that is a causative agent of vibriosis in finfish and crustaceans with mortality rates ranging from 30% to 100%. Mutations in central metabolism (glycolysis and the TCA cycle) of intracellular pathogens often result in attenuated virulence due to depletion of required metabolic intermediates; however, it was not known whether mutations in central metabolism would affect virulence in an extracellular pathogen such as V. anguillarum. Seven central metabolism mutants were created and characterized with regard to growth in minimal and complex media, expression of virulence genes, and virulence in juvenile rainbow trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss). Only the isocitrate dehydrogenase (icd) mutant was attenuated in virulence against rainbow trout challenged by either intraperitoneal injection or immersion. Further, the icd mutant was shown to be immunoprotective against wild type V. anguillarum infection. There was no significant decrease in the expression of the three hemolysin genes detected by qRT-PCR. Additionally, only the icd mutant exhibited a significantly decreased growth yield in complex media. Growth yield was directly related to the abundance of glutamate. A strain with a restored wild type icd gene was created and shown to restore growth to a wild type cell density in complex media and pathogenicity in rainbow trout. The data strongly suggest that a decreased growth yield, resulting from the inability to synthesize α-ketoglutarate, caused the attenuation despite normal levels of expression of virulence genes. Therefore, the ability of an extracellular pathogen to cause disease is dependent upon the availability of host-supplied nutrients for growth. Additionally, a live vaccine strain could be created from an icd deletion strain.

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

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    Alex T Nielsen

    2010-09-01

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

  9. Virulence meets metabolism: Cra and KdpE gene regulation in enterohemorrhagic Escherichia coli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Njoroge, Jacqueline W; Nguyen, Y; Curtis, Meredith M; Moreira, Cristiano G; Sperandio, Vanessa

    2012-10-16

    Gastrointestinal (GI) bacteria sense diverse environmental signals as cues for differential gene regulation and niche adaptation. Pathogens such as enterohemorrhagic Escherichia coli (EHEC), which causes bloody diarrhea, use these signals for the temporal and energy-efficient regulation of their virulence factors. One of the main virulence strategies employed by EHEC is the formation of attaching and effacing (AE) lesions on enterocytes. Most of the genes necessary for the formation of these lesions are grouped within a pathogenicity island, the locus of enterocyte effacement (LEE), whose expression requires the LEE-encoded regulator Ler. Here we show that growth of EHEC in glycolytic environments inhibits the expression of ler and consequently all other LEE genes. Conversely, growth within a gluconeogenic environment activates expression of these genes. This sugar-dependent regulation is achieved through two transcription factors: KdpE and Cra. Both Cra and KdpE directly bind to the ler promoter, and Cra's affinity to this promoter is catabolite dependent. Moreover, we show that the Cra and KdpE proteins interact in vitro and that KdpE's ability to bind DNA is enhanced by the presence of Cra. Cra is important for AE lesion formation, and KdpE contributes to this Cra-dependent regulation. The deletion of cra and kdpE resulted in the ablation of AE lesions. One of the many challenges that bacteria face within the GI tract is to successfully compete for carbon sources. Linking carbon metabolism to the precise coordination of virulence expression is a key step in the adaptation of pathogens to the GI environment. IMPORTANCE An appropriate and prompt response to environmental cues is crucial for bacterial survival. Cra and KdpE are two proteins found in both nonpathogenic and pathogenic bacteria that regulate genes in response to differences in metabolite concentration. In this work, we show that, in the deadly pathogen enterohemorrhagic Escherichia coli (EHEC) O157:H7

  10. Molecular and Conventional Analysis of Acute Diarrheal Isolates Identifies Epidemiological Trends, Antibiotic Resistance and Virulence Profiles of Common Enteropathogens in Shanghai

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    Feng Yang

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available Objective: To investigate prevalence of acute diarrhea in Shanghai and analyze virulence associated-genes and antibiotic resistance of major enteropathogens using combination of conventional and molecular epidemiology methods.Method: The 412 stool specimens were obtained by systematic sampling from diarrhea patients throughout entire year 2016. Bacterial and viral pathogens were identified and bacterial isolates were cultured and screened for antibiotic resistance profiles. Two most prevalent bacteria, Vibrio parahaemolyticus and Salmonella were further typed by multi-locus sequence typing (MLST and analyzed for presence of virulence-associated genes. The association between virulence genes, resistance phenotypes and genetic diversities was analyzed.Results: Among stool specimens testing positive for pathogens (23.1%, 59 bacterial and 36 viral pathogens were identified. V. parahaemolyticus (27/412, 6.6%, Salmonella (23/412, 5.6% and norovirus GII (21/412, 5.1% were three most-commonly found. Most bacterial isolates exhibited high levels of antibiotic resistance with high percentage of MDR. The drug resistance rates of V. parahaemolyticus and Salmonella isolates to cephalosporins were high, such as 100.0 and 34.8% to CFX, 55.6 and 43.4% to CTX, 92.6 and 95.7% to CXM, respectively. The most common resistance combination of V. parahaemolyticus and Salmonella was cephalosporins and quinolone. The dominant sequence types (STs of V. parahaemolyticus and Salmonella were ST3 (70.4% and ST11 (43.5%, respectively. The detection rates of virulence genes in V. parahaemolyticus were tlh (100% and tdh (92.6%, without trh and ureR. Most of the Salmonella isolates were positive for the Salmonella pathogenicity islands (SPIs genes (87–100%, and some for Salmonella plasmid virulence (SPV genes (34.8% for spvA and spvB, 43.5% for spvC. In addition, just like the drug resistance, virulence genes exhibited wide-spread distribution among the different STs albeit

  11. Novel genetic tools for diaminopimelic acid selection in virulence studies of Yersinia pestis.

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    David M Bland

    2011-03-01

    Full Text Available Molecular studies of bacterial virulence are enhanced by expression of recombinant DNA during infection to allow complementation of mutants and expression of reporter proteins in vivo. For highly pathogenic bacteria, such as Yersinia pestis, these studies are currently limited because deliberate introduction of antibiotic resistance is restricted to those few which are not human treatment options. In this work, we report the development of alternatives to antibiotics as tools for host-pathogen research during Yersinia pestis infections focusing on the diaminopimelic acid (DAP pathway, a requirement for cell wall synthesis in eubacteria. We generated a mutation in the dapA-nlpB(dapX operon of Yersinia pestis KIM D27 and CO92 which eliminated the expression of both genes. The resulting strains were auxotrophic for diaminopimelic acid and this phenotype was complemented in trans by expressing dapA in single and multi-copy. In vivo, we found that plasmids derived from the p15a replicon were cured without selection, while selection for DAP enhanced stability without detectable loss of any of the three resident virulence plasmids. The dapAX mutation rendered Y. pestis avirulent in mouse models of bubonic and septicemic plague which could be complemented when dapAX was inserted in single or multi-copy, restoring development of disease that was indistinguishable from the wild type parent strain. We further identified a high level, constitutive promoter in Y. pestis that could be used to drive expression of fluorescent reporters in dapAX strains that had minimal impact to virulence in mouse models while enabling sensitive detection of bacteria during infection. Thus, diaminopimelic acid selection for single or multi-copy genetic systems in Yersinia pestis offers an improved alternative to antibiotics for in vivo studies that causes minimal disruption to virulence.

  12. Novel genetic tools for diaminopimelic acid selection in virulence studies of Yersinia pestis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bland, David M; Eisele, Nicholas A; Keleher, Lauren L; Anderson, Paul E; Anderson, Deborah M

    2011-03-02

    Molecular studies of bacterial virulence are enhanced by expression of recombinant DNA during infection to allow complementation of mutants and expression of reporter proteins in vivo. For highly pathogenic bacteria, such as Yersinia pestis, these studies are currently limited because deliberate introduction of antibiotic resistance is restricted to those few which are not human treatment options. In this work, we report the development of alternatives to antibiotics as tools for host-pathogen research during Yersinia pestis infections focusing on the diaminopimelic acid (DAP) pathway, a requirement for cell wall synthesis in eubacteria. We generated a mutation in the dapA-nlpB(dapX) operon of Yersinia pestis KIM D27 and CO92 which eliminated the expression of both genes. The resulting strains were auxotrophic for diaminopimelic acid and this phenotype was complemented in trans by expressing dapA in single and multi-copy. In vivo, we found that plasmids derived from the p15a replicon were cured without selection, while selection for DAP enhanced stability without detectable loss of any of the three resident virulence plasmids. The dapAX mutation rendered Y. pestis avirulent in mouse models of bubonic and septicemic plague which could be complemented when dapAX was inserted in single or multi-copy, restoring development of disease that was indistinguishable from the wild type parent strain. We further identified a high level, constitutive promoter in Y. pestis that could be used to drive expression of fluorescent reporters in dapAX strains that had minimal impact to virulence in mouse models while enabling sensitive detection of bacteria during infection. Thus, diaminopimelic acid selection for single or multi-copy genetic systems in Yersinia pestis offers an improved alternative to antibiotics for in vivo studies that causes minimal disruption to virulence.

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

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    April M Sapp

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

  14. Molecular adaptation of a plant-bacterium outer membrane protease towards plague virulence factor Pla

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-01-01

    Background Omptins are a family of outer membrane proteases that have spread by horizontal gene transfer in Gram-negative bacteria that infect vertebrates or plants. Despite structural similarity, the molecular functions of omptins differ in a manner that reflects the life style of their host bacteria. To simulate the molecular adaptation of omptins, we applied site-specific mutagenesis to make Epo of the plant pathogenic Erwinia pyrifoliae exhibit virulence-associated functions of its close homolog, the plasminogen activator Pla of Yersinia pestis. We addressed three virulence-associated functions exhibited by Pla, i.e., proteolytic activation of plasminogen, proteolytic degradation of serine protease inhibitors, and invasion into human cells. Results Pla and Epo expressed in Escherichia coli are both functional endopeptidases and cleave human serine protease inhibitors, but Epo failed to activate plasminogen and to mediate invasion into a human endothelial-like cell line. Swapping of ten amino acid residues at two surface loops of Pla and Epo introduced plasminogen activation capacity in Epo and inactivated the function in Pla. We also compared the structure of Pla and the modeled structure of Epo to analyze the structural variations that could rationalize the different proteolytic activities. Epo-expressing bacteria managed to invade human cells only after all extramembranous residues that differ between Pla and Epo and the first transmembrane β-strand had been changed. Conclusions We describe molecular adaptation of a protease from an environmental setting towards a virulence factor detrimental for humans. Our results stress the evolvability of bacterial β-barrel surface structures and the environment as a source of progenitor virulence molecules of human pathogens. PMID:21310089

  15. Flavonoids Suppress Pseudomonas aeruginosa Virulence through Allosteric Inhibition of Quorum-sensing Receptors*

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    Paczkowski, Jon E.; Mukherjee, Sampriti; McCready, Amelia R.; Cong, Jian-Ping; Aquino, Christopher J.; Kim, Hahn; Henke, Brad R.; Smith, Chari D.; Bassler, Bonnie L.

    2017-01-01

    Quorum sensing is a process of cell-cell communication that bacteria use to regulate collective behaviors. Quorum sensing depends on the production, detection, and group-wide response to extracellular signal molecules called autoinducers. In many bacterial species, quorum sensing controls virulence factor production. Thus, disrupting quorum sensing is considered a promising strategy to combat bacterial pathogenicity. Several members of a family of naturally produced plant metabolites called flavonoids inhibit Pseudomonas aeruginosa biofilm formation by an unknown mechanism. Here, we explore this family of molecules further, and we demonstrate that flavonoids specifically inhibit quorum sensing via antagonism of the autoinducer-binding receptors, LasR and RhlR. Structure-activity relationship analyses demonstrate that the presence of two hydroxyl moieties in the flavone A-ring backbone are essential for potent inhibition of LasR/RhlR. Biochemical analyses reveal that the flavonoids function non-competitively to prevent LasR/RhlR DNA binding. Administration of the flavonoids to P. aeruginosa alters transcription of quorum sensing-controlled target promoters and suppresses virulence factor production, confirming their potential as anti-infectives that do not function by traditional bacteriocidal or bacteriostatic mechanisms. PMID:28119451

  16. Inhibition of quorum sensing-mediated virulence in Serratia marcescens by Bacillus subtilis R-18.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Devi, Kannan Rama; Srinivasan, Subramaniyan; Ravi, Arumugam Veera

    2018-04-13

    Serratia marcescens is an opportunistic human pathogen causing various nosocomial infections, most importantly urinary tract infections (UTIs). It exhibits increased resistance towards the conventional antibiotics. This study was aimed to evaluate the anti-virulence effect of a rhizosphere soil bacterium Bacillus subtilis strain R-18 against the uropathogen S. marcescens. First, the bacterial cell-free culture supernatant (CFCS) of B. subtilis strain R-18 was evaluated for its quorum sensing inhibitory (QSI) potential against biomarker strain Chromobacterium violaceum and the test pathogen S. marcescens. The B. subtilis R-18 CFCS effectively inhibited the quorum sensing (QS)-mediated violacein pigment production in C. violaceum and prodigiosin pigment production in S. marcescens. Furthermore, B. subtilis R-18 CFCS was successively extracted with different solvent systems. Of these solvents, B. subtilis R-18 petroleum ether (PE) extract showed inhibition in biofilm formation, protease, lipase, and hemolysin productions in S. marcescens. Fourier transform infrared spectroscopic (FT-IR) analysis revealed the alterations in the cellular components of bacterial cell pellets obtained from B. subtilis R-18 PE extract treated and untreated S. marcescens. The differential gene expression study further validated the downregulation of virulence-associated genes. Characterization of the active principle in B. subtilis R-18 PE extract by gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS) analysis showed the presence of multiple compounds with therapeutic values, which could possibly reduce the QS-dependent phenotypes in S. marcescens. Copyright © 2018. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  17. Carbon storage regulator A contributes to the virulence of Haemophilus ducreyi in humans by multiple mechanisms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gangaiah, Dharanesh; Li, Wei; Fortney, Kate R; Janowicz, Diane M; Ellinger, Sheila; Zwickl, Beth; Katz, Barry P; Spinola, Stanley M

    2013-02-01

    The carbon storage regulator A (CsrA) controls a wide variety of bacterial processes, including metabolism, adherence, stress responses, and virulence. Haemophilus ducreyi, the causative agent of chancroid, harbors a homolog of csrA. Here, we generated an unmarked, in-frame deletion mutant of csrA to assess its contribution to H. ducreyi pathogenesis. In human inoculation experiments, the csrA mutant was partially attenuated for pustule formation compared to its parent. Deletion of csrA resulted in decreased adherence of H. ducreyi to human foreskin fibroblasts (HFF); Flp1 and Flp2, the determinants of H. ducreyi adherence to HFF cells, were downregulated in the csrA mutant. Compared to its parent, the csrA mutant had a significantly reduced ability to tolerate oxidative stress and heat shock. The enhanced sensitivity of the mutant to oxidative stress was more pronounced in bacteria grown to stationary phase compared to that in bacteria grown to mid-log phase. The csrA mutant also had a significant survival defect within human macrophages when the bacteria were grown to stationary phase but not to mid-log phase. Complementation in trans partially or fully restored the mutant phenotypes. These data suggest that CsrA contributes to virulence by multiple mechanisms and that these contributions may be more profound in bacterial cell populations that are not rapidly dividing in the human host.

  18. Structural characterization of the virulence factor nuclease A from Streptococcus agalactiae.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moon, Andrea F; Gaudu, Philippe; Pedersen, Lars C

    2014-11-01

    The group B pathogen Streptococcus agalactiae commonly populates the human gut and urogenital tract, and is a major cause of infection-based mortality in neonatal infants and in elderly or immunocompromised adults. Nuclease A (GBS_NucA), a secreted DNA/RNA nuclease, serves as a virulence factor for S. agalactiae, facilitating bacterial evasion of the human innate immune response. GBS_NucA efficiently degrades the DNA matrix component of neutrophil extracellular traps (NETs), which attempt to kill and clear invading bacteria during the early stages of infection. In order to better understand the mechanisms of DNA substrate binding and catalysis of GBS_NucA, the high-resolution structure of a catalytically inactive mutant (H148G) was solved by X-ray crystallography. Several mutants on the surface of GBS_NucA which might influence DNA substrate binding and catalysis were generated and evaluated using an imidazole chemical rescue technique. While several of these mutants severely inhibited nuclease activity, two mutants (K146R and Q183A) exhibited significantly increased activity. These structural and biochemical studies have greatly increased our understanding of the mechanism of action of GBS_NucA in bacterial virulence and may serve as a foundation for the structure-based drug design of antibacterial compounds targeted to S. agalactiae.

  19. Genetically Engineered Virulent Phage Banks in the Detection and Control of Emergent Pathogenic Bacteria

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blois, Hélène; Iris, François

    2010-01-01

    Natural outbreaks of multidrug-resistant microorganisms can cause widespread devastation, and several can be used or engineered as agents of bioterrorism. From a biosecurity standpoint, the capacity to detect and then efficiently control, within hours, the spread and the potential pathological effects of an emergent outbreak, for which there may be no effective antibiotics or vaccines, become key challenges that must be met. We turned to phage engineering as a potentially highly flexible and effective means to both detect and eradicate threats originating from emergent (uncharacterized) bacterial strains. To this end, we developed technologies allowing us to (1) concurrently modify multiple regions within the coding sequence of a gene while conserving intact the remainder of the gene, (2) reversibly interrupt the lytic cycle of an obligate virulent phage (T4) within its host, (3) carry out efficient insertion, by homologous recombination, of any number of engineered genes into the deactivated genomes of a T4 wild-type phage population, and (4) reactivate the lytic cycle, leading to the production of engineered infective virulent recombinant progeny. This allows the production of very large, genetically engineered lytic phage banks containing, in an E. coli host, a very wide spectrum of variants for any chosen phage-associated function, including phage host-range. Screening of such a bank should allow the rapid isolation of recombinant T4 particles capable of detecting (ie, diagnosing), infecting, and destroying hosts belonging to gram-negative bacterial species far removed from the original E. coli host. PMID:20569057

  20. Computational determination of the effects of virulent Escherichia coli and salmonella bacteriophages on human gut.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mostafa, Marwa Mostafa; Nassef, Mohammad; Badr, Amr

    2016-10-01

    Salmonella and Escherichia coli are different types of bacteria that cause food poisoning in humans. In the elderly, infants and people with chronic conditions, it is very dangerous if Salmonella or E. coli gets into the bloodstream and then they must be treated by phage therapy. Treating Salmonella and E. coli by phage therapy affects the gut flora. This research paper presents a system for detecting the effects of virulent E. coli and Salmonella bacteriophages on human gut. A method based on Domain-Domain Interactions (DDIs) model is implemented in the proposed system to determine the interactions between the proteins of human gut bacteria and the proteins of bacteriophages that infect virulent E. coli and Salmonella. The system helps gastroenterologists to realize the effect of injecting bacteriophages that infect virulent E. coli and Salmonella on the human gut. By testing the system over Enterobacteria phage 933W, Enterobacteria phage VT2-Sa and Enterobacteria phage P22, it resulted in four interactions between the proteins of the bacteriophages that infect E. coli O157:H7, E. coli O104:H4 and Salmonella typhimurium and the proteins of human gut bacterium strains. Several effects were detected such as: antibacterial activity against a number of bacterial species in human gut, regulation of cellular differentiation and organogenesis during gut, lung, and heart development, ammonia assimilation in bacteria, yeasts, and plants, energizing defense system and its function in the detoxification of lipopolysaccharide, and in the prevention of bacterial translocation in human gut. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  1. Sortase A: an ideal target for anti-virulence drug development.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cascioferro, Stella; Totsika, Makrina; Schillaci, Domenico

    2014-12-01

    Sortase A is a membrane enzyme responsible for the anchoring of surface-exposed proteins to the cell wall envelope of Gram-positive bacteria. As a well-studied member of the sortase subfamily catalysing the cell wall anchoring of important virulence factors to the surface of staphylococci, enterococci and streptococci, sortase A plays a critical role in Gram-positive bacterial pathogenesis. It is thus considered a promising target for the development of new anti-infective drugs that aim to interfere with important Gram-positive virulence mechanisms, such as adhesion to host tissues, evasion of host defences, and biofilm formation. The additional properties of sortase A as an enzyme that is not required for Gram-positive bacterial growth or viability and is conveniently located on the cell membrane making it more accessible to inhibitor targeting, constitute additional reasons reinforcing the view that sortase A is an ideal target for anti-virulence drug development. Many inhibitors of sortase A have been identified to date using high-throughput or in silico screening of compound libraries (synthetic or natural), and while many have proved useful tools for probing the action model of the enzyme, several are also promising candidates for the development into potent inhibitors. This review is focused on the most promising sortase A inhibitor compounds that are currently in development as leads towards a new class of anti-infective drugs that are urgently needed to help combat the alarming increase in antimicrobial resistance. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  2. Cystic fibrosis-niche adaptation of Pseudomonas aeruginosa reduces virulence in multiple infection hosts.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nicola Ivan Lorè

    Full Text Available The opportunistic pathogen Pseudomonas aeruginosa is able to thrive in diverse ecological niches and to cause serious human infection. P. aeruginosa environmental strains are producing various virulence factors that are required for establishing acute infections in several host organisms; however, the P. aeruginosa phenotypic variants favour long-term persistence in the cystic fibrosis (CF airways. Whether P. aeruginosa strains, which have adapted to the CF-niche, have lost their competitive fitness in the other environment remains to be investigated. In this paper, three P. aeruginosa clonal lineages, including early strains isolated at the onset of infection, and late strains, isolated after several years of chronic lung infection from patients with CF, were analysed in multi-host model systems of acute infection. P. aeruginosa early isolates caused lethality in the three non-mammalian hosts, namely Caenorhabditis elegans, Galleria mellonella, and Drosophila melanogaster, while late adapted clonal isolates were attenuated in acute virulence. When two different mouse genetic background strains, namely C57Bl/6NCrl and Balb/cAnNCrl, were used as acute infection models, early P. aeruginosa CF isolates were lethal, while late isolates exhibited reduced or abolished acute virulence. Severe histopathological lesions, including high leukocytes recruitment and bacterial load, were detected in the lungs of mice infected with P. aeruginosa CF early isolates, while late isolates were progressively cleared. In addition, systemic bacterial spread and invasion of epithelial cells, which were detected for P. aeruginosa CF early strains, were not observed with late strains. Our findings indicate that niche-specific selection in P. aeruginosa reduced its ability to cause acute infections across a broad range of hosts while maintaining the capacity for chronic infection in the CF host.

  3. Effect of decreased BCAA synthesis through disruption of ilvC gene on the virulence of Streptococcus pneumoniae.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Gyu-Lee; Lee, Seungyeop; Luong, Truc Thanh; Nguyen, Cuong Thach; Park, Sang-Sang; Pyo, Suhkneung; Rhee, Dong-Kwon

    2017-08-01

    Streptococcus pneumoniae (pneumococcus) is responsible for significant morbidity and mortality worldwide. It causes a variety of life-threatening infections such as pneumonia, bacteremia, and meningitis. In bacterial physiology, the metabolic pathway of branched-chain amino acids (BCAAs) plays an important role in virulence. Nonetheless, the function of IlvC, one of the enzymes involved in the biosynthesis of BCAAs, in S. pneumoniae remains unclear. Here, we demonstrated that downregulation of BCAA biosynthesis by ilvC ablation can diminish BCAA concentration and expression of pneumolysin (Ply) and LytA, and subsequently attenuate virulence. Infection with an ilvC mutant showed significantly reduced mortality and colonization in comparison with strain D39 (serotype 2, wild type), suggesting that ilvC can potentiate S. pneumoniae virulence due to adequate BCAA synthesis. Taken together, these results suggest that the function of ilvC in BCAA synthesis is essential for virulence factor and could play an important role in the pathogenesis of respiratory infections.

  4. Detection of virulence genes determining the ability to adhere and invade in Campylobacter spp. from cattle and swine in Poland.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wysok, Beata; Wojtacka, Joanna

    2018-02-01

    The aim of the study was to determine the prevalence of virulence genes responsible for the adhesion (flaA, cadF and racR) and invasion (virB11, iam and pldA) in Campylobacter isolates from cattle and swine and determine their adherence and invasion abilities. The studies conducted revealed high prevalence rate of adherence and invasion associated genes irrespective of the isolates origin. All Campylobacter strains of swine and cattle origin adhered to HeLa cells at mean level 0.1099% ± SD 0.1341% and 0.0845% ± SD 0.1304% of starting viable inoculum, respectively. However swine isolates exhibited higher invasion abilities (0.0012% ± SD 0.0011%) compared to bovine isolates (0.00038% ± SD 0.00055%). The results obtained revealed significantly positive correlation between invasion and adherence abilities of swine origin isolates (R = 0.4867 in regard to C. jejuni and R = 0.4507 in regard to C. coli) and bovine origin isolates (R = 0.726 in regard to C. jejuni). Bacterial virulence is multifactorial and it is affected by the expression of virulence genes. Moreover the presence of virulence genes determines the ability of Campylobacter isolates to adhere and invade the cells. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  5. GlmS and NagB regulate amino sugar metabolism in opposing directions and affect Streptococcus mutans virulence.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Miki Kawada-Matsuo

    Full Text Available Streptococcus mutans is a cariogenic pathogen that produces an extracellular polysaccharide (glucan from dietary sugars, which allows it to establish a reproductive niche and secrete acids that degrade tooth enamel. While two enzymes (GlmS and NagB are known to be key factors affecting the entrance of amino sugars into glycolysis and cell wall synthesis in several other bacteria, their roles in S. mutans remain unclear. Therefore, we investigated the roles of GlmS and NagB in S. mutans sugar metabolism and determined whether they have an effect on virulence. NagB expression increased in the presence of GlcNAc while GlmS expression decreased, suggesting that the regulation of these enzymes, which functionally oppose one another, is dependent on the concentration of environmental GlcNAc. A glmS-inactivated mutant could not grow in the absence of GlcNAc, while nagB-inactivated mutant growth was decreased in the presence of GlcNAc. Also, nagB inactivation was found to decrease the expression of virulence factors, including cell-surface protein antigen and glucosyltransferase, and to decrease biofilm formation and saliva-induced S. mutans aggregation, while glmS inactivation had the opposite effects on virulence factor expression and bacterial aggregation. Our results suggest that GlmS and NagB function in sugar metabolism in opposing directions, increasing and decreasing S. mutans virulence, respectively.

  6. Comparison of Antibiotic Resistance and Virulence Factors among Escherichia coli Isolated from Conventional and Free-Range Poultry

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vanessa L. Koga

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Microbiological contamination in commercial poultry production has caused concerns for human health because of both the presence of pathogenic microorganisms and the increase in antimicrobial resistance in bacterial strains that can cause treatment failure of human infections. The aim of our study was to analyze the profile of antimicrobial resistance and virulence factors of E. coli isolates from chicken carcasses obtained from different farming systems (conventional and free-range poultry. A total of 156 E. coli strains were isolated and characterized for genes encoding virulence factors described in extraintestinal pathogenic E. coli (ExPEC. Antimicrobial susceptibility testing was performed for 15 antimicrobials, and strains were confirmed as extended spectrum of β-lactamases- (ESBLs- producing E. coli by phenotypic and genotypic tests. The results indicated that strains from free-range poultry have fewer virulence factors than strains from conventional poultry. Strains from conventionally raised chickens had a higher frequency of antimicrobial resistance for all antibiotics tested and also exhibited genes encoding ESBL and AmpC, unlike free-range poultry isolates, which did not. Group 2 CTX-M and CIT were the most prevalent ESBL and AmpC genes, respectively. The farming systems of poultries can be related with the frequency of virulence factors and resistance to antimicrobials in bacteria.

  7. The FUN of identifying gene function in bacterial pathogens; insights from Salmonella functional genomics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hammarlöf, Disa L; Canals, Rocío; Hinton, Jay C D

    2013-10-01

    The availability of thousands of genome sequences of bacterial pathogens poses a particular challenge because each genome contains hundreds of genes of unknown function (FUN). How can we easily discover which FUN genes encode important virulence factors? One solution is to combine two different functional genomic approaches. First, transcriptomics identifies bacterial FUN genes that show differential expression during the process of mammalian infection. Second, global mutagenesis identifies individual FUN genes that the pathogen requires to cause disease. The intersection of these datasets can reveal a small set of candidate genes most likely to encode novel virulence attributes. We demonstrate this approach with the Salmonella infection model, and propose that a similar strategy could be used for other bacterial pathogens. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  8. Host imprints on bacterial genomes--rapid, divergent evolution in individual patients.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jaroslaw Zdziarski

    Full Text Available Bacteria lose or gain genetic material and through selection, new variants become fixed in the population. Here we provide the first, genome-wide example of a single bacterial strain's evolution in different deliberately colonized patients and the surprising insight that hosts appear to personalize their microflora. By first obtaining the complete genome sequence of the prototype asymptomatic bacteriuria strain E. coli 83972 and then resequencing its descendants after therapeutic bladder colonization of different patients, we identified 34 mutations, which affected metabolic and virulence-related genes. Further transcriptome and proteome analysis proved that these genome changes altered bacterial gene expression resulting in unique adaptation patterns in each patient. Our results provide evidence that, in addition to stochastic events, adaptive bacterial evolution is driven by individual host environments. Ongoing loss of gene function supports the hypothesis that evolution towards commensalism rather than virulence is favored during asymptomatic bladder colonization.

  9. Zinc Detoxification Is Required for Full Virulence and Modification of the Host Leaf Ionome by Xylella fastidiosa.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Navarrete, Fernando; De La Fuente, Leonardo

    2015-04-01

    Zinc (Zn) is an essential element for all forms of life because it is a structural or catalytic cofactor of many proteins, but it can have toxic effects at high concentrations; thus, microorganisms must tightly regulate its levels. Here, we evaluated the role of Zn homeostasis proteins in the virulence of the xylem-limited bacterium Xylella fastidiosa, causal agent of Pierce's disease of grapevine, among other diseases. Two mutants of X. fastidiosa 'Temecula' affected in genes which regulate Zn homeostasis (zur) and Zn detoxification (czcD) were constructed. Both knockouts showed increased sensitivity to Zn at physiologically relevant concentrations and increased intracellular accumulation of this metal compared with the wild type. Increased Zn sensitivity was correlated with decreased growth in grapevine xylem sap, reduced twitching motility, and downregulation of exopolysaccharide biosynthetic genes. Tobacco plants inoculated with either knockout mutant showed reduced foliar symptoms and a much reduced (czcD) or absent (zur) modification of the leaf ionome (i.e., the mineral nutrient and trace element composition), as well as reduced bacterial populations. The results show that detoxification of Zn is crucial for the virulence of X. fastidiosa and verifies our previous findings that modification of the host leaf ionome correlates with bacterial virulence.

  10. Xanthomonas citri ssp. citri requires the outer membrane porin OprB for maximal virulence and biofilm formation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ficarra, Florencia A; Grandellis, Carolina; Galván, Estela M; Ielpi, Luis; Feil, Regina; Lunn, John E; Gottig, Natalia; Ottado, Jorgelina

    2017-06-01

    Xanthomonas citri ssp. citri (Xcc) causes canker disease in citrus, and biofilm formation is critical for the disease cycle. OprB (Outer membrane protein B) has been shown previously to be more abundant in Xcc biofilms compared with the planktonic state. In this work, we showed that the loss of OprB in an oprB mutant abolishes bacterial biofilm formation and adherence to the host, and also compromises virulence and efficient epiphytic survival of the bacteria. Moreover, the oprB mutant is impaired in bacterial stress resistance. OprB belongs to a family of carbohydrate transport proteins, and the uptake of glucose is decreased in the mutant strain, indicating that OprB transports glucose. Loss of OprB leads to increased production of xanthan exopolysaccharide, and the carbohydrate intermediates of xanthan biosynthesis are also elevated in the mutant. The xanthan produced by the mutant has a higher viscosity and, unlike wild-type xanthan, completely lacks pyruvylation. Overall, these results suggest that Xcc reprogrammes its carbon metabolism when it senses a shortage of glucose input. The participation of OprB in the process of biofilm formation and virulence, as well as in metabolic changes to redirect the carbon flux, is discussed. Our results demonstrate the importance of environmental nutrient supply and glucose uptake via OprB for Xcc virulence. © 2016 BSPP AND JOHN WILEY & SONS LTD.

  11. Virulence of invasive Salmonella Typhimurium ST313 in animal models of infection.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Girish Ramachandran

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available Salmonella Typhimurium sequence type (ST 313 produces septicemia in infants in sub-Saharan Africa. Although there are known genetic and phenotypic differences between ST313 strains and gastroenteritis-associated ST19 strains, conflicting data about the in vivo virulence of ST313 strains have been reported. To resolve these differences, we tested clinical Salmonella Typhimurium ST313 and ST19 strains in murine and rhesus macaque infection models. The 50% lethal dose (LD50 was determined for three Salmonella Typhimurium ST19 and ST313 strains in mice. For dissemination studies, bacterial burden in organs was determined at various time-points post-challenge. Indian rhesus macaques were infected with one ST19 and one ST313 strain. Animals were monitored for clinical signs and bacterial burden and pathology were determined. The LD50 values for ST19 and ST313 infected mice were not significantly different. However, ST313-infected BALB/c mice had significantly higher bacterial numbers in blood at 24 h than ST19-infected mice. ST19-infected rhesus macaques exhibited moderate-to-severe diarrhea while ST313-infected monkeys showed no-to-mild diarrhea. ST19-infected monkeys had higher bacterial burden and increased inflammation in tissues. Our data suggest that Salmonella Typhimurium ST313 invasiveness may be investigated using mice. The non-human primate results are consistent with clinical data, suggesting that ST313 strains do not cause diarrhea.

  12. Virulence of invasive Salmonella Typhimurium ST313 in animal models of infection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ramachandran, Girish; Panda, Aruna; Higginson, Ellen E; Ateh, Eugene; Lipsky, Michael M; Sen, Sunil; Matson, Courtney A; Permala-Booth, Jasnehta; DeTolla, Louis J; Tennant, Sharon M

    2017-08-01

    Salmonella Typhimurium sequence type (ST) 313 produces septicemia in infants in sub-Saharan Africa. Although there are known genetic and phenotypic differences between ST313 strains and gastroenteritis-associated ST19 strains, conflicting data about the in vivo virulence of ST313 strains have been reported. To resolve these differences, we tested clinical Salmonella Typhimurium ST313 and ST19 strains in murine and rhesus macaque infection models. The 50% lethal dose (LD50) was determined for three Salmonella Typhimurium ST19 and ST313 strains in mice. For dissemination studies, bacterial burden in organs was determined at various time-points post-challenge. Indian rhesus macaques were infected with one ST19 and one ST313 strain. Animals were monitored for clinical signs and bacterial burden and pathology were determined. The LD50 values for ST19 and ST313 infected mice were not significantly different. However, ST313-infected BALB/c mice had significantly higher bacterial numbers in blood at 24 h than ST19-infected mice. ST19-infected rhesus macaques exhibited moderate-to-severe diarrhea while ST313-infected monkeys showed no-to-mild diarrhea. ST19-infected monkeys had higher bacterial burden and increased inflammation in tissues. Our data suggest that Salmonella Typhimurium ST313 invasiveness may be investigated using mice. The non-human primate results are consistent with clinical data, suggesting that ST313 strains do not cause diarrhea.

  13. Influence of bacterial interactions on pneumococcal colonization of the nasopharynx.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shak, Joshua R; Vidal, Jorge E; Klugman, Keith P

    2013-03-01

    Streptococcus pneumoniae (the pneumococcus) is a common commensal inhabitant of the nasopharynx and a frequent etiologic agent in serious diseases such as pneumonia, otitis media, bacteremia, and meningitis. Multiple pneumococcal strains can colonize the nasopharynx, which is also home to many other bacterial species. Intraspecies and interspecies interactions influence pneumococcal carriage in important ways. Co-colonization by two or more pneumococcal strains has implications for vaccine serotype replacement, carriage detection, and pneumonia diagnostics. Interactions between the pneumococcus and other bacterial species alter carriage prevalence, modulate virulence, and affect biofilm formation. By examining these interactions, this review highlights how the bacterial ecosystem of the nasopharynx changes the nature and course of pneumococcal carriage. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  14. Virulence of Rhodococcus equi Isolated from Cats and Dogs

    OpenAIRE

    Takai, Shinji; Martens, Ronald J.; Julian, Alan; Garcia Ribeiro, Márcio; Rodrigues de Farias, Marconi; Sasaki, Yukako; Inuzuka, Kazuho; Kakuda, Tsutomu; Tsubaki, Shiro; Prescott, John F.

    2003-01-01

    Nine cat isolates and nine dog isolates of Rhodococcus equi from clinical material were investigated for the presence of the virulence-associated antigens (VapA and VapB) and virulence plasmids. Five of the cat isolates and one dog isolate were VapA positive and contained an 85-kb type I or an 87-kb type I plasmid. The remaining 12 isolates were avirulent R. equi strains and contained no virulence plasmids.

  15. Mutations induced by ultraviolet radiation affecting virulence in Puccinia striiformis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Shang Hongsheng; Jing Jinxue; Li Zhenqi

    1994-01-01

    Uredospores of parent culture, cy 29-1, were treated by ultraviolet radiation and mutations to virulent were tested on resistant wheat cultivars inoculated with treated spores. 7 mutant cultures virulent to the test cultivars were developed with estimated mutation rate 10~6~10~4. The virulence of mutant cultures was different from the all known races of stripe rust. Resistance segregation to mutant cultures was detected in two test cultivars. The results suggested that mutation was important mechanism of virulence variation operative in asexual population of rust fungi

  16. Limiting opportunities for cheating stabilizes virulence in insect parasitic nematodes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shapiro-Ilan, David; Raymond, Ben

    2016-03-01

    Cooperative secretion of virulence factors by pathogens can lead to social conflict when cheating mutants exploit collective secretion, but do not contribute to it. If cheats outcompete cooperators within hosts, this can cause loss of virulence. Insect parasitic nematodes are important biocontrol tools that secrete a range of significant virulence factors. Critically, effective nematodes are hard to maintain without live passage, which can lead to virulence attenuation. Using experimental evolution, we tested whether social cheating might explain unstable virulence in the nematode Heterorhabditis floridensis by manipulating relatedness via multiplicity of infection (MOI), and the scale of competition. Passage at high MOI, which should reduce relatedness, led to loss of fitness: virulence and reproductive rate declined together and all eight independent lines suffered premature extinction. As theory predicts, relatedness treatments had more impact under stronger global competition. In contrast, low MOI passage led to more stable virulence and increased reproduction. Moreover, low MOI lineages showed a trade-off between virulence and reproduction, particularly for lines under stronger between-host competition. Overall, this study indicates that evolution of virulence theory is valuable for the culture of biocontrol agents: effective nematodes can be improved and maintained if passage methods mitigate possible social conflicts.

  17. STRUCTURAL ORGANIZATION OF BACTERIAL UREASES

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lisnyak YuV

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available This brief review concerns the basic principles of structural organization of multi-subunit bacterial ureases and formation of their quaternary structure. Urease is a nickel-containing enzyme (urea amidohydrolase, ЕС 3.5.1.5 that catalyses the hydrolysis of urea to get ammonia and carbamate which then decomposes with water to get ammonia and carbon dioxide. Urease is produced by bacteria, fungi, yeast and plants. On the basis of similarities in amino acid sequences, ureases assumed to have a similar structure and conservative catalytic mechanism. Within past two decades bacterial ureases have gained much attention in research field as a virulence factor in human and animal infections. The first crystal structure of urease has been determined for that from Klebsiella aerogenes. The native enzyme consists of three subunits, UreA (α-chain, UreB (β-chain and UreC (γ-chain, and contains four structural domains: two in α-chain (α-domain 1 and α-domain-2, one in β- and one in γ-chain. These three chains form a T-shaped heterotrimer αβγ. Three αβγ heterotrimers form quaternary complex (αβγ3. In case of Helicobacter pilori, the analogous trimers of corresponding dimeric subunits (αβ3 form tetrameric structure ((αβ34 in which four trimers are situated at the vertexes of the regular triangle pyramid. Active center is located in α-domain 1 and contains two atoms of nickel coordinated by residues His134, His136, carboxylated Lys217, His 246, His272 and Asp360, as well as residues involved in binding (His219 and catalysis (His320. Active site is capped by a flap that controls substrate ingress to and product egress from the dinickel center. Urease requires accessory proteins (UreD, UreF, UreG and UreE for the correct assembly of their Ni-containing metallocenters. The accessory proteins UreD, UreF, and UreG sequentially bind to the apoprotein (UreABC3 to finally form (UreABC-UreDFG3 activation complex. UreE metallochaperone delivers

  18. Dissemination of a highly virulent pathogen: tracking the early events that define infection.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rodrigo J Gonzalez

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available The series of events that occurs immediately after pathogen entrance into the body is largely speculative. Key aspects of these events are pathogen dissemination and pathogen interactions with the immune response as the invader moves into deeper tissues. We sought to define major events that occur early during infection of a highly virulent pathogen. To this end, we tracked early dissemination of Yersinia pestis, a highly pathogenic bacterium that causes bubonic plague in mammals. Specifically, we addressed two fundamental questions: (1 do the bacteria encounter barriers in disseminating to draining lymph nodes (LN, and (2 what mechanism does this nonmotile bacterium use to reach the LN compartment, as the prevailing model predicts trafficking in association with host cells. Infection was followed through microscopy imaging in addition to assessing bacterial population dynamics during dissemination from the skin. We found and characterized an unexpected bottleneck that severely restricts bacterial dissemination to LNs. The bacteria that do not pass through this bottleneck are confined to the skin, where large numbers of neutrophils arrive and efficiently control bacterial proliferation. Notably, bottleneck formation is route dependent, as it is abrogated after subcutaneous inoculation. Using a combination of approaches, including microscopy imaging, we tested the prevailing model of bacterial dissemination from the skin into LNs and found no evidence of involvement of migrating phagocytes in dissemination. Thus, early stages of infection are defined by a bottleneck that restricts bacterial dissemination and by neutrophil-dependent control of bacterial proliferation in the skin. Furthermore, and as opposed to current models, our data indicate an intracellular stage is not required by Y. pestis to disseminate from the skin to draining LNs. Because our findings address events that occur during early encounters of pathogen with the immune response

  19. Omics strategies for revealing Yersinia pestis virulence

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Ruifu; Du, Zongmin; Han, Yanping; Zhou, Lei; Song, Yajun; Zhou, Dongsheng; Cui, Yujun

    2012-01-01

    Omics has remarkably changed the way we investigate and understand life. Omics differs from traditional hypothesis-driven research because it is a discovery-driven approach. Mass datasets produced from omics-based studies require experts from different fields to reveal the salient features behind these data. In this review, we summarize omics-driven studies to reveal the virulence features of Yersinia pestis through genomics, trascriptomics, proteomics, interactomics, etc. These studies serve as foundations for further hypothesis-driven research and help us gain insight into Y. pestis pathogenesis. PMID:23248778

  20. Virulence determinants of pandemic influenza viruses

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tscherne, Donna M.; García-Sastre, Adolfo

    2011-01-01

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

  1. Metal acquisition and virulence in Brucella

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roop, R. Martin

    2013-01-01

    Similar to other bacteria, Brucella strains require several biologically essential metals for their survival in vitro and in vivo. Acquiring sufficient levels of some of these metals, particularly iron, manganese and zinc, is especially challenging in the mammalian host, where sequestration of these micronutrients is a well-documented component of both the innate and acquired immune responses. This review describes the Brucella metal transporters that have been shown to play critical roles in the virulence of these bacteria in experimental and natural hosts. PMID:22632611

  2. High temperature and bacteriophages can indirectly select for bacterial pathogenicity in environmental reservoirs.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ville-Petri Friman

    2011-03-01

    Full Text Available The coincidental evolution hypothesis predicts that traits connected to bacterial pathogenicity could be indirectly selected outside the host as a correlated response to abiotic environmental conditions or different biotic species interactions. To investigate this, an opportunistic bacterial pathogen, Serratia marcescens, was cultured in the absence and presence of the lytic bacteriophage PPV (Podoviridae at 25°C and 37°C for four weeks (N = 5. At the end, we measured changes in bacterial phage-resistance and potential virulence traits, and determined the pathogenicity of all bacterial selection lines in the Parasemia plantaginis insect model in vivo. Selection at 37°C increased bacterial motility and pathogenicity but only in the absence of phages. Exposure to phages increased the phage-resistance of bacteria, and this was costly in terms of decreased maximum population size in the absence of phages. However, this small-magnitude growth cost was not greater with bacteria that had evolved in high temperature regime, and no trade-off was found between phage-resistance and growth rate. As a result, phages constrained the evolution of a temperature-mediated increase in bacterial pathogenicity presumably by preferably infecting the highly motile and virulent bacteria. In more general perspective, our results suggest that the traits connected to bacterial pathogenicity could be indirectly selected as a correlated response by abiotic and biotic factors in environmental reservoirs.

  3. Transforming clinical microbiology with bacterial genome sequencing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Didelot, Xavier; Bowden, Rory; Wilson, Daniel J; Peto, Tim E A; Crook, Derrick W

    2012-09-01

    Whole-genome sequencing of bacteria has recently emerged as a cost-effective and convenient approach for addressing many microbiological questions. Here, we review the current status of clinical microbiology and how it has already begun to be transformed by using next-generation sequencing. We focus on three essential tasks: identifying the species of an isolate, testing its properties, such as resistance to antibiotics and virulence, and monitoring the emergence and spread of bacterial pathogens. We predict that the application of next-generation sequencing will soon be sufficiently fast, accurate and cheap to be used in routine clinical microbiology practice, where it could replace many complex current techniques with a single, more efficient workflow.

  4. Virulence-associated gene profiling of Streptococcus suis isolates by PCR

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Silva, L.M.G.; Baums, C.G.; Rehm, T.; Wisselink, H.J.; Goethe, R.; Valentin-Weigand, P.

    2006-01-01

    Definition of virulent Streptococcus suis strains is controversial. One successful approach for identification of virulent European strains is differentiation of capsular serotypes (or the corresponding cps types) and subsequent detection of virulence-associated factors, namely the extracellular

  5. [Virulence of Sporothrix globosa in murine models].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cruz Choappa, Rodrigo; Pérez Gaete, Salomón; Rodríguez Badilla, Valentina; Vieille Oyarzo, Peggy; Opazo Sanchez, Héctor

    The sporothricosis disease is an infection caused by species included in Sporothrix schenkii complex. Verify the virulence of a strain of S. globosa using two different concentrations of inoculum by intraperitoneally and subcutaneously, into a mouse model. Nonrandomized pilot study, in murine inoculated with a strain of S. globosa (CBS 14.076M) by intraperitoneally and subcutaneously with inoculum concentrations of 0.5 and 4 McFarland. For this purpose 18 rodents CF-1 (ISP, Santiago, Chile) were used. The studied strain did not induce illness or injury on animals, they all survived and neither the tissue culture nor the histopathological analysis showed fungal growth or suggestive infection by organ abnormalities. The S. globosa strain did not present any virulence enough to cause disease at 0.5 and 4.0 McFarland concentration inoculum when inoculated in both intraperitoneally and subcutaneously, in murine models. Copyright © 2016 Asociación Argentina de Microbiología. Publicado por Elsevier España, S.L.U. All rights reserved.

  6. Porphyromonas gingivalis : Its virulence and vaccine

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nymphea Pandit

    2015-01-01

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

  7. CorA, the magnesium/nickel/cobalt transporter, affects virulence and extracellular enzyme production in the soft rot pathogen Pectobacterium carotovorum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kersey, Caleb M; Agyemang, Paul A; Dumenyo, C Korsi

    2012-01-01

    Pectobacterium carotovorum (formerly Erwinia carotovora ssp. carotovora) is a phytopathogenic bacterium that causes soft rot disease, characterized by water-soaked soft decay, resulting from the action of cell wall-degrading exoenzymes secreted by the pathogen. Virulence in soft rot bacteria is regulated by environmental factors, host and bacterial chemical signals, and a network of global and gene-specific bacterial regulators. We isolated a mini-Tn5 mutant of P. carotovorum that is reduced in the production of extracellular pectate lyase, protease, polygalacturonase and cellulase. The mutant is also decreased in virulence as it macerates less host tissues than its parent and is severely impaired in multiplication in planta. The inactivated gene responsible for the reduced virulent phenotype was identified as corA. CorA, a magnesium/nickel/cobalt membrane transporter, is the primary magnesium transporter for many bacteria. Compared with the parent, the CorA(-) mutant is cobalt resistant. The mutant phenotype was confirmed in parental strain P. carotovorum by marker exchange inactivation of corA. A functional corA(+) DNA from P. carotovorum restored exoenzyme production and pathogenicity to the mutants. The P. carotovorum corA(+) clone also restored motility and cobalt sensitivity to a CorA(-) mutant of Salmonella enterica. These data indicate that CorA is required for exoenzyme production and virulence in P. carotovorum. © 2011 THE AUTHORS. MOLECULAR PLANT PATHOLOGY © 2011 BSPP AND BLACKWELL PUBLISHING LTD.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2017-12-15

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

  9. Live Attenuated Tularemia Vaccines for Protection Against Respiratory Challenge With Virulent F. tularensis subsp. tularensis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jia, Qingmei; Horwitz, Marcus A.

    2018-01-01

    Francisella tularensis is the causative agent of tularemia and a Tier I bioterrorism agent. In the 1900s, several vaccines were developed against tularemia including the killed “Foshay” vaccine, subunit vaccines comprising F. tularensis protein(s) or lipoproteins(s) in an adjuvant formulation, and the F. tularensis Live Vaccine Strain (LVS); none were licensed in the U.S.A. or European Union. The LVS vaccine retains toxicity in humans and animals—especially mice—but has demonstrated efficacy in humans, and thus serves as the current gold standard for vaccine efficacy studies. The U.S.A. 2001 anthrax bioterrorism attack spawned renewed interest in vaccines against potential biowarfare agents including F. tularensis. Since live attenuated—but not killed or subunit—vaccines have shown promising efficacy and since vaccine efficacy against respiratory challenge with less virulent subspecies holarctica or F. novicida, or against non-respiratory challenge with virulent subsp. tularensis (Type A) does not reliably predict vaccine efficacy against respiratory challenge with virulent subsp. tularensis, the route of transmission and species of greatest concern in a bioterrorist attack, in this review, we focus on live attenuated tularemia vaccine candidates tested against respiratory challenge with virulent Type A strains, including homologous vaccines derived from mutants of subsp. holarctica, F. novicida, and subsp. tularensis, and heterologous vaccines developed using viral or bacterial vectors to express F. tularensis immunoprotective antigens. We compare the virulence and efficacy of these vaccine candidates with that of LVS and discuss factors that can significantly impact the development and evaluation of live attenuated tularemia vaccines. Several vaccines meet what we would consider the minimum criteria for vaccines to go forward into clinical development—safety greater than LVS and efficacy at least as great as LVS, and of these, several meet the

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

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Ibrahim Eldaghayes

    2018-03-20

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

  11. Limiting opportunities for cheating stabilizes virulence in insect parasitic nematodes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cooperative secretion of virulence factors by pathogens can often lead to social conflict as cheating mutants that benefit from collective action, but do not contribute to it, can arise and locally outcompete cooperators within hosts, leading to loss of virulence. There is a wide range of in vivo st...

  12. Antibiotic Resistance and Virulence Properties in Escherichia coli ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    This study determined E. coli resistance to commonly used antibiotics together with their virulence properties in Ile-Ife, Nigeria. A total of 137 E. coli isolates from cases of urinary tract infection were tested for their sensitivity to commonly used antibiotics and possession of virulence factors using standard methods.

  13. The non-conserved region of MRP is involved in the virulence of Streptococcus suis serotype 2.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Quan; Fu, Yang; Ma, Caifeng; He, Yanan; Yu, Yanfei; Du, Dechao; Yao, Huochun; Lu, Chengping; Zhang, Wei

    2017-10-03

    Muramidase-released protein (MRP) of Streptococcus suis serotype 2 (SS2) is an important epidemic virulence marker with an unclear role in bacterial infection. To investigate the biologic functions of MRP, 3 mutants named Δmrp, Δmrp domain 1 (Δmrp-d1), and Δmrp domain 2 (Δmrp-d2) were constructed to assess the phenotypic changes between the parental strain and the mutant strains. The results indicated that MRP domain 1 (MRP-D1, the non-conserved region of MRP from a virulent strain, a.a. 242-596) played a critical role in adherence of SS2 to host cells, compared with MRP domain 1* (MRP-D1*, the non-conserved region of MRP from a low virulent strain, a.a. 239-598) or MRP domain 2 (MRP-D2, the conserved region of MRP, a.a. 848-1222). We found that MRP-D1 but not MRP-D2, could bind specifically to fibronectin (FN), factor H (FH), fibrinogen (FG), and immunoglobulin G (IgG). Additionally, we confirmed that mrp-d1 mutation significantly inhibited bacteremia and brain invasion in a mouse infection model. The mrp-d1 mutation also attenuated the intracellular survival of SS2 in RAW246.7 macrophages, shortened the growth ability in pig blood and decreased the virulence of SS2 in BALB/c mice. Furthermore, antiserum against MRP-D1 was found to dramatically impede SS2 survival in pig blood. Finally, immunization with recombinant MRP-D1 efficiently enhanced murine viability after SS2 challenge, indicating its potential use in vaccination strategies. Collectively, these results indicated that MRP-D1 is involved in SS2 virulence and eloquently demonstrate the function of MRP in pathogenesis of infection.

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

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    Angen Øystein

    2010-12-01

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

  15. Subversion of the Endocytic and Secretory Pathways by Bacterial Effector Proteins

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    Mary M. Weber

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available Intracellular bacteria have developed numerous strategies to hijack host vesicular trafficking pathways to form their unique replicative niches. To promote intracellular replication, the bacteria must interact with host organelles and modulate host signaling pathways to acquire nutrients and membrane for the growing parasitophorous vacuole all while suppressing activation of the immune response. To facilitate host cell subversion, bacterial pathogens use specialized secretion systems to deliver bacterial virulence factors, termed effectors, into the host cell that mimic, agonize, and/or antagonize the function of host proteins. In this review we will discuss how bacterial effector proteins from Coxiella burnetii, Brucella abortus, Salmonella enterica serovar Typhimurium, Legionella pneumophila, Chlamydia trachomatis, and Orientia tsutsugamushi manipulate the endocytic and secretory pathways. Understanding how bacterial effector proteins manipulate host processes not only gives us keen insight into bacterial pathogenesis, but also enhances our understanding of how eukaryotic membrane trafficking is regulated.

  16. Bacterial lung abscess

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Groskin, S.A.; Panicek, D.M.; Ewing, D.K.; Rivera, F.; Math, K.; Teixeira, J.; Heitzman, E.R.

    1987-01-01

    A retrospective review of patients with bacterial lung abscess was carried out. Demographic, clinical, and radiographical features of this patient group are compared with similar data from patients with empyema and/or cavitated lung carcinoma; differential diagnostic points are stressed. The entity of radiographically occult lung abscess is discussed. Complications associated with bacterial lung abscess are discussed. Current therapeutic options and treatment philosophy for patients with bacterial lung abscess are noted

  17. Peritonitis - spontaneous bacterial

    Science.gov (United States)

    Spontaneous bacterial peritonitis (SBP); Ascites - peritonitis; Cirrhosis - peritonitis ... who are on peritoneal dialysis for kidney failure. Peritonitis may have other causes . These include infection from ...

  18. Escaping Underground Nets: Extracellular DNases Degrade Plant Extracellular Traps and Contribute to Virulence of the Plant Pathogenic Bacterium Ralstonia solanacearum

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tran, Tuan Minh; MacIntyre, April; Hawes, Martha; Allen, Caitilyn

    2016-01-01

    Plant root border cells have been recently recognized as an important physical defense against soil-borne pathogens. Root border cells produce an extracellular matrix of protein, polysaccharide and DNA that functions like animal neutrophil extracellular traps to immobilize pathogens. Exposing pea root border cells to the root-infecting bacterial wilt pathogen Ralstonia solanacearum triggered release of DNA-containing extracellular traps in a flagellin-dependent manner. These traps rapidly immobilized the pathogen and killed some cells, but most of the entangled bacteria eventually escaped. The R. solanacearum genome encodes two putative extracellular DNases (exDNases) that are expressed during pathogenesis, suggesting that these exDNases contribute to bacterial virulence by enabling the bacterium to degrade and escape root border cell traps. We tested this hypothesis with R. solanacearum deletion mutants lacking one or both of these nucleases, named NucA and NucB. Functional studies with purified proteins revealed that NucA and NucB are non-specific endonucleases and that NucA is membrane-associated and cation-dependent. Single ΔnucA and ΔnucB mutants and the ΔnucA/B double mutant all had reduced virulence on wilt-susceptible tomato plants in a naturalistic soil-soak inoculation assay. The ΔnucA/B mutant was out-competed by the wild-type strain in planta and was less able to stunt root growth or colonize plant stems. Further, the double nuclease mutant could not escape from root border cells in vitro and was defective in attachment to pea roots. Taken together, these results demonstrate that extracellular DNases are novel virulence factors that help R. solanacearum successfully overcome plant defenses to infect plant roots and cause bacterial wilt disease. PMID:27336156

  19. Escaping Underground Nets: Extracellular DNases Degrade Plant Extracellular Traps and Contribute to Virulence of the Plant Pathogenic Bacterium Ralstonia solanacearum.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tuan Minh Tran

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available Plant root border cells have been recently recognized as an important physical defense against soil-borne pathogens. Root border cells produce an extracellular matrix of protein, polysaccharide and DNA that functions like animal neutrophil extracellular traps to immobilize pathogens. Exposing pea root border cells to the root-infecting bacterial wilt pathogen Ralstonia solanacearum triggered release of DNA-containing extracellular traps in a flagellin-dependent manner. These traps rapidly immobilized the pathogen and killed some cells, but most of the entangled bacteria eventually escaped. The R. solanacearum genome encodes two putative extracellular DNases (exDNases that are expressed during pathogenesis, suggesting that these exDNases contribute to bacterial virulence by enabling the bacterium to degrade and escape root border cell traps. We tested this hypothesis with R. solanacearum deletion mutants lacking one or both of these nucleases, named NucA and NucB. Functional studies with purified proteins revealed that NucA and NucB are non-specific endonucleases and that NucA is membrane-associated and cation-dependent. Single ΔnucA and ΔnucB mutants and the ΔnucA/B double mutant all had reduced virulence on wilt-susceptible tomato plants in a naturalistic soil-soak inoculation assay. The ΔnucA/B mutant was out-competed by the wild-type strain in planta and was less able to stunt root growth or colonize plant stems. Further, the double nuclease mutant could not escape from root border cells in vitro and was defective in attachment to pea roots. Taken together, these results demonstrate that extracellular DNases are novel virulence factors that help R. solanacearum successfully overcome plant defenses to infect plant roots and cause bacterial wilt disease.

  20. Inhibitory Effects of Chrysanthemum boreale Essential Oil on Biofilm Formation and Virulence Factor Expression of Streptococcus mutans

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Beom-Su; Park, Sun-Ju; Kim, Myung-Kon; Kim, Young-Hoi; Lee, Sang-Bong; Lee, Kwang-Hee; Lee, Young-Rae; Lee, Young-Eun; You, Yong-Ouk

    2015-01-01

    The aim of the study was to evaluate the antibacterial activity of essential oil extracted from Chrysanthemum boreale (C. boreale) on Streptococcus mutans (S. mutans). To investigate anticariogenic properties, and bacterial growth, acid production, biofilm formation, bacterial adherence of S. mutans were evaluated. Then gene expression of several virulence factors was also evaluated. C. boreale essential oil exhibited significant inhibition of bacterial growth, adherence capacity, and acid production of S. mutans at concentrations 0.1–0.5 mg/mL and 0.25–0.5 mg/mL, respectively. The safranin staining and scanning electron microscopy results showed that the biofilm formation was also inhibited. The result of live/dead staining showed the bactericidal effect. Furthermore, real-time PCR analysis showed that the gene expression of some virulence factors such as gtfB, gtfC, gtfD, gbpB, spaP, brpA, relA, and vicR of S. mutans was significantly decreased in a dose dependent manner. In GC and GC-MS analysis, seventy-two compounds were identified in the oil, representing 85.42% of the total oil. The major components were camphor (20.89%), β-caryophyllene (5.71%), α-thujone (5.46%), piperitone (5.27%), epi-sesquiphellandrene (5.16%), α-pinene (4.97%), 1,8-cineole (4.52%), β-pinene (4.45%), and camphene (4.19%). These results suggest that C. boreale essential oil may inhibit growth, adhesion, acid tolerance, and biofilm formation of S. mutans through the partial inhibition of several of these virulence factors. PMID:25763094

  1. Inhibitory Effects of Chrysanthemum boreale Essential Oil on Biofilm Formation and Virulence Factor Expression of Streptococcus mutans

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Beom-Su Kim

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available The aim of the study was to evaluate the antibacterial activity of essential oil extracted from Chrysanthemum boreale (C. boreale on Streptococcus mutans (S. mutans. To investigate anticariogenic properties, and bacterial growth, acid production, biofilm formation, bacterial adherence of S. mutans were evaluated. Then gene expression of several virulence factors was also evaluated. C. boreale essential oil exhibited significant inhibition of bacterial growth, adherence capacity, and acid production of S. mutans at concentrations 0.1–0.5 mg/mL and 0.25–0.5 mg/mL, respectively. The safranin staining and scanning electron microscopy results showed that the biofilm formation was also inhibited. The result of live/dead staining showed the bactericidal effect. Furthermore, real-time PCR analysis showed that the gene expression of some virulence factors such as gtfB, gtfC, gtfD, gbpB, spaP, brpA, relA, and vicR of S. mutans was significantly decreased in a dose dependent manner. In GC and GC-MS analysis, seventy-two compounds were identified in the oil, representing 85.42% of the total oil. The major components were camphor (20.89%, β-caryophyllene (5.71%, α-thujone (5.46%, piperitone (5.27%, epi-sesquiphellandrene (5.16%, α-pinene (4.97%, 1,8-cineole (4.52%, β-pinene (4.45%, and camphene (4.19%. These results suggest that C. boreale essential oil may inhibit growth, adhesion, acid tolerance, and biofilm formation of S. mutans through the partial inhibition of several of these virulence factors.

  2. A role for the RNA chaperone Hfq in controlling adherent-invasive Escherichia coli colonization and virulence.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Karina T Simonsen

    Full Text Available Adherent-invasive Escherichia coli (AIEC has been linked with the onset and perpetuation of inflammatory bowel diseases. The AIEC strain LF82 was originally isolated from an ileal biopsy from a patient with Crohn's disease. The pathogenesis of LF82 results from its abnormal adherence to and subsequent invasion of the intestinal epithelium coupled with its ability to survive phagocytosis by macrophages once it has crossed the intestinal barrier. To gain further insight into AIEC pathogenesis we employed the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans as an in vivo infection model. We demonstrate that AIEC strain LF82 forms a persistent infection in C. elegans, thereby reducing the host lifespan significantly. This host killing phenotype was associated with massive bacterial colonization of the nematode intestine and damage to the intestinal epithelial surface. C. elegans killing was independent of known LF82 virulence determinants but was abolished by deletion of the LF82 hfq gene, which encodes an RNA chaperone involved in mediating posttranscriptional gene regulation by small non-coding RNAs. This finding reveals that important aspects of LF82 pathogenesis are controlled at the posttranscriptional level by riboregulation. The role of Hfq in LF82 virulence was independent of its function in regulating RpoS and RpoE activity. Further, LF82Δhfq mutants were non-motile, impaired in cell invasion and highly sensitive to various chemical stress conditions, reinforcing the multifaceted function of Hfq in mediating bacterial adaptation. This study highlights the usefulness of simple non-mammalian infection systems for the identification and analysis of bacterial virulence factors.

  3. Surface-Associated Lipoproteins Link Enterococcus faecalis Virulence to Colitogenic Activity in IL-10-Deficient Mice Independent of Their Expression Levels.

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    Soeren Ocvirk

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available The commensal Enterococcus faecalis is among the most common causes of nosocomial infections. Recent findings regarding increased abundance of enterococci in the intestinal microbiota of patients with inflammatory bowel diseases and induction of colitis in IL-10-deficient (IL-10-/- mice put a new perspective on the contribution of E. faecalis to chronic intestinal inflammation. Based on the expression of virulence-related genes in the inflammatory milieu of IL-10-/- mice using RNA-sequencing analysis, we characterized the colitogenic role of two bacterial structures that substantially impact on E. faecalis virulence by different mechanisms: the enterococcal polysaccharide antigen and cell surface-associated lipoproteins. Germ-free wild type and IL-10-/- mice were monoassociated with E. faecalis wild type OG1RF or the respective isogenic mutants for 16 weeks. Intestinal tissue and mesenteric lymph nodes (MLN were collected to characterize tissue pathology, loss of intestinal barrier function, bacterial adhesion to intestinal epithelium and immune cell activation. Bone marrow-derived dendritic cells (BMDC were stimulated with bacterial lysates and E. faecalis virulence was additionally investigated in three invertebrate models. Colitogenic activity of wild type E. faecalis (OG1RF score: 7.2±1.2 in monoassociated IL-10-/- mice was partially impaired in E. faecalis lacking enterococcal polysaccharide antigen (ΔepaB score: 4.7±2.3; p<0.05 and was almost completely abrogated in E. faecalis deficient for lipoproteins (Δlgt score: 2.3±2.3; p<0.0001. Consistently both E. faecalis mutants showed significantly impaired virulence in Galleria mellonella and Caenorhabditis elegans. Loss of E-cadherin in the epithelium was shown for all bacterial strains in inflamed IL-10-/- but not wild type mice. Inactivation of epaB in E. faecalis reduced microcolony and biofilm formation in vitro, altered bacterial adhesion to intestinal epithelium of germ

  4. Sialylation of lipooligosaccharides is dispensable for the virulence of Haemophilus ducreyi in humans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Spinola, Stanley M; Li, Wei; Fortney, Kate R; Janowicz, Diane M; Zwickl, Beth; Katz, Barry P; Munson, Robert S

    2012-02-01

    Sialylated glycoconjugates on the surfaces of mammalian cells play important roles in intercellular communication and self-recognition. The sialic acid preferentially expressed in human tissues is N-acetylneuraminic acid (Neu5Ac). In a process called molecular mimicry, many bacterial pathogens decorate their cell surface glycolipids with Neu5Ac. Incorporation of Neu5Ac into bacterial glycolipids promotes bacterial interactions with host cell receptors called Siglecs. These interactions affect bacterial adherence, resistance to serum killing and phagocytosis, and innate immune responses. Haemophilus ducreyi, the etiologic agent of chancroid, expresses lipooligosaccharides (LOS) that are highly sialylated. However, an H. ducreyi sialyltransferase (lst) mutant, whose LOS contain reduced levels of Neu5Ac, is fully virulent in human volunteers. Recently, a second sialyltransferase gene (Hd0053) was discovered in H. ducreyi, raising the possibility that Hd0053 compensated for the loss of lst during human infection. CMP-Neu5Ac is the obligate nucleotide sugar donor for all bacterial sialyltransferases; LOS derived from an H. ducreyi CMP-Neu5Ac synthetase (neuA) mutant has no detectable Neu5Ac. Here, we compared an H. ducreyi neuA mutant to its wild-type parent in several models of pathogenesis. In human inoculation experiments, the neuA mutant formed papules and pustules at rates that were no different than those of its parent. When grown in media with and without Neu5Ac supplementation, the neuA mutant and its parent had similar phenotypes in bactericidal, macrophage uptake, and dendritic cell activation assays. Although we cannot preclude a contribution of LOS sialylation to ulcerative disease, these data strongly suggest that sialylation of LOS is dispensable for H. ducreyi pathogenesis in humans.

  5. The Central Metabolism Regulator EIIAGlc Switches Salmonella from Growth Arrest to Acute Virulence through Activation of Virulence Factor Secretion

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alain Mazé

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available The ability of Salmonella to cause disease depends on metabolic activities and virulence factors. Here, we show that a key metabolic protein, EIIAGlc, is absolutely essential for acute infection, but not for Salmonella survival, in a mouse typhoid fever model. Surprisingly, phosphorylation-dependent EIIAGlc functions, including carbohydrate transport and activation of adenylate cyclase for global regulation, do not explain this virulence phenotype. Instead, biochemical studies, in vitro secretion and translocation assays, and in vivo genetic epistasis experiments suggest that EIIAGlc binds to the type three secretion system 2 (TTSS-2 involved in systemic virulence, stabilizes its cytoplasmic part including the crucial TTSS-2 ATPase, and activates virulence factor secretion. This unexpected role of EIIAGlc reveals a striking direct link between central Salmonella metabolism and a crucial virulence mechanism.

  6. Structural Aspects of Bacterial Outer Membrane Protein Assembly.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Calmettes, Charles; Judd, Andrew; Moraes, Trevor F

    2015-01-01

    The outer membrane of Gram-negative bacteria is predominantly populated by β-Barrel proteins and lipid anchored proteins that serve a variety of biological functions. The proper folding and assembly of these proteins is essential for bacterial viability and often plays a critical role in virulence and pathogenesis. The β-barrel assembly machinery (Bam) complex is responsible for the proper assembly of β-barrels into the outer membrane of Gram-negative bacteria, whereas the localization of lipoproteins (Lol) system is required for proper targeting of lipoproteins to the outer membrane.

  7. Norepinephrine and dopamine increase motility, biofilm formation and virulence of Vibrio harveyi

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    Qian eYang

    2014-11-01

    Full Text Available Vibrio harveyi is one of the major pathogens of aquatic organisms, affecting both vertebrates and invertebrates, and causes important losses in the aquaculture industry. In order to develop novel methods to control disease caused by this pathogen, we need to obtain a better understanding of pathogenicity mechanisms. Sensing of catecholamines increases both growth and production of virulence-related factors in pathogens of terrestrial animals and humans. However, at this moment, knowledge on the impact of catecholamines on the virulence of pathogens of aquatic organisms is lacking. In the present study, we report that in V. harveyi, norepinephrine and dopamine increased growth in serum-supplemented medium, siderophore production, swimming motility and expression of genes involved in flagellar motility, biofilm formation, and exopolysaccharide production. Consistent with this, pretreatment of V. harveyi with catecholamines prior to inoculation into the rearing water resulted in significantly decreased survival of gnotobiotic brine shrimp larvae, when compared to larvae challenged with untreated V. harveyi. Further, norepinephrine-induced effects could be neutralized by α-adrenergic antagonists or by the bacterial catecholamine receptor antagonist LED209, but not by β-adrenergic or dopaminergic antagonists. Dopamine-induced effects could be neutralized by dopaminergic antagonists or LED209, but not by adrenergic antagonists. Together, our results indicate that catecholamine sensing increases the success of transmission of V. harveyi and that interfering with catecholamine sensing might be an interesting strategy to control vibriosis in aquaculture. We hypothesise that upon tissue and/or hemocyte damage during infection, pathogens come into contact with elevated catecholamine levels, and that this stimulates the expression of virulence factors that are required to colonize a new host.

  8. Microevolution of Virulence-Related Genes in Helicobacter pylori Familial Infection.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yoshikazu Furuta

    Full Text Available Helicobacter pylori, a bacterial pathogen that can infect human stomach causing gastritis, ulcers and cancer, is known to have a high degree of genome/epigenome diversity as the result of mutation and recombination. The bacteria often infect in childhood and persist for the life of the host. One of the reasons of the rapid evolution of H. pylori is that it changes its genome drastically for adaptation to a new host. To investigate microevolution and adaptation of the H. pylori genome, we undertook whole genome sequencing of the same or very similar sequence type in multi-locus sequence typing (MLST with seven genes in members of the same family consisting of parents and children in Japan. Detection of nucleotide substitutions revealed likely transmission pathways involving children. Nonsynonymous (amino acid changing mutations were found in virulence-related genes (cag genes, vacA, hcpDX, tnfα, ggt, htrA and the collagenase gene, outer membrane protein (OMP genes and other cell surface-related protein genes, signal transduction genes and restriction-modification genes. We reconstructed various pathways by which H. pylori can adapt to a new human host, and our results raised the possibility that the mutational changes in virulence-related genes have a role in adaptation to a child host. Changes in restriction-modification genes might remodel the methylome and transcriptome to help adaptation. This study has provided insights into H. pylori transmission and virulence and has implications for basic research as well as clinical practice.

  9. Sugar Allocation to Metabolic Pathways is Tightly Regulated and Affects the Virulence of Streptococcus mutans

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Miki Kawada-Matsuo

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available Bacteria take up and metabolize sugar as a carbohydrate source for survival. Most bacteria can utilize many sugars, including glucose, sucrose, and galactose, as well as amino sugars, such as glucosamine and N-acetylglucosamine. After entering the cytoplasm, the sugars are mainly allocated to the glycolysis pathway (energy production and to various bacterial component biosynthesis pathways, including the cell wall, nucleic acids and amino acids. Sugars are also utilized to produce several virulence factors, such as capsule and lipoteichoic acid. Glutamine-fructose-6-phosphate aminotransferase (GlmS and glucosamine-6-phosphate deaminase (NagB have crucial roles in sugar distribution to the glycolysis pathway and to cell wall biosynthesis. In Streptococcus mutans, a cariogenic pathogen, the expression levels of glmS and nagB are coordinately regulated in response to the presence or absence of amino sugars. In addition, the disruption of this regulation affects the virulence of S. mutans. The expression of nagB and glmS is regulated by NagR in S. mutans, but the precise mechanism underlying glmS regulation is not clear. In Staphylococcus aureus and Bacillus subtilis, the mRNA of glmS has ribozyme activity and undergoes self-degradation at the mRNA level. However, there is no ribozyme activity region on glmS mRNA in S. mutans. In this review article, we summarize the sugar distribution, particularly the coordinated regulation of GlmS and NagB expression, and its relationship with the virulence of S. mutans.

  10. Correlation of Klebsiella pneumoniae comparative genetic analyses with virulence profiles in a murine respiratory disease model.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ramy A Fodah

    Full Text Available Klebsiella pneumoniae is a bacterial pathogen of worldwide importance and a significant contributor to multiple disease presentations associated with both nosocomial and community acquired disease. ATCC 43816 is a well-studied K. pneumoniae strain which is capable of causing an acute respiratory disease in surrogate animal models. In this study, we performed sequencing of the ATCC 43816 genome to support future efforts characterizing genetic elements required for disease. Furthermore, we performed comparative genetic analyses to the previously sequenced genomes from NTUH-K2044 and MGH 78578 to gain an understanding of the conservation of known virulence determinants amongst the three strains. We found that ATCC 43816 and NTUH-K2044 both possess the known virulence determinant for yersiniabactin, as well as a Type 4 secretion system (T4SS, CRISPR system, and an acetonin catabolism locus, all absent from MGH 78578. While both NTUH-K2044 and MGH 78578 are clinical isolates, little is known about the disease potential of these strains in cell culture and animal models. Thus, we also performed functional analyses in the murine macrophage cell lines RAW264.7 and J774A.1 and found that MGH 78578 (K52 serotype was internalized at higher levels than ATCC 43816 (K2 and NTUH-K2044 (K1, consistent with previous characterization of the antiphagocytic properties of K1 and K2 serotype capsules. We also examined the three K. pneumoniae strains in a novel BALB/c respiratory disease model and found that ATCC 43816 and NTUH-K2044 are highly virulent (LD50<100 CFU while MGH 78578 is relatively avirulent.

  11. Norepinephrine and dopamine increase motility, biofilm formation, and virulence of Vibrio harveyi.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Qian; Anh, Nguyen D Q; Bossier, Peter; Defoirdt, Tom

    2014-01-01

    Vibrio harveyi is one of the major pathogens of aquatic organisms, affecting both vertebrates and invertebrates, and causes important losses in the aquaculture industry. In order to develop novel methods to control disease caused by this pathogen, we need to obtain a better understanding of pathogenicity mechanisms. Sensing of catecholamines increases both growth and production of virulence-related factors in pathogens of terrestrial animals and humans. However, at this moment, knowledge on the impact of catecholamines on the virulence of pathogens of aquatic organisms is lacking. In the present study, we report that in V. harveyi, norepinephrine (NE) and dopamine (Dopa) increased growth in serum-supplemented medium, siderophore production, swimming motility, and expression of genes involved in flagellar motility, biofilm formation, and exopolysaccharide production. Consistent with this, pretreatment of V. harveyi with catecholamines prior to inoculation into the rearing water resulted in significantly decreased survival of gnotobiotic brine shrimp larvae, when compared to larvae challenged with untreated V. harveyi. Further, NE-induced effects could be neutralized by α-adrenergic antagonists or by the bacterial catecholamine receptor antagonist LED209, but not by β-adrenergic or dopaminergic antagonists. Dopa-induced effects could be neutralized by dopaminergic antagonists or LED209, but not by adrenergic antagonists. Together, our results indicate that catecholamine sensing increases the success of transmission of V. harveyi and that interfering with catecholamine sensing might be an interesting strategy to control vibriosis in aquaculture. We hypothesize that upon tissue and/or hemocyte damage during infection, pathogens come into contact with elevated catecholamine levels, and that this stimulates the expression of virulence factors that are required to colonize a new host.

  12. Symbiotic Relationship between Streptococcus mutans and Candida albicans Synergizes Virulence of Plaque Biofilms In Vivo

    Science.gov (United States)

    Falsetta, Megan L.; Klein, Marlise I.; Colonne, Punsiri M.; Scott-Anne, Kathleen; Gregoire, Stacy; Pai, Chia-Hua; Gonzalez-Begne, Mireya; Watson, Gene; Krysan, Damian J.; Bowen, William H.

    2014-01-01

    Streptococcus mutans is often cited as the main bacterial pathogen in dental caries, particularly in early-childhood caries (ECC). S. mutans may not act alone; Candida albicans cells are frequently detected along with heavy infection by S. mutans in plaque biofilms from ECC-affected children. It remains to be elucidated whether this association is involved in the enhancement of biofilm virulence. We showed that the ability of these organisms together to form biofilms is enhanced in vitro and in vivo. The presence of C. albicans augments the production of exopolysaccharides (EPS), such that cospecies biofilms accrue more biomass and harbor more viable S. mutans cells than single-species biofilms. The resulting 3-dimensional biofilm architecture displays sizeable S. mutans microcolonies surrounded by fungal cells, which are enmeshed in a dense EPS-rich matrix. Using a rodent model, we explored the implications of this cross-kingdom interaction for the pathogenesis of dental caries. Coinfected animals displayed higher levels of infection and microbial carriage within plaque biofilms than animals infected with either species alone. Furthermore, coinfection synergistically enhanced biofilm virulence, leading to aggressive onset of the disease with rampant carious lesions. Our in vitro data also revealed that glucosyltransferase-derived EPS is a key mediator of cospecies biofilm development and that coexistence with C. albicans induces the expression of virulence genes in S. mutans (e.g., gtfB, fabM). We also found that Candida-derived β1,3-glucans contribute to the EPS matrix structure, while fungal mannan and β-glucan provide sites for GtfB binding and activity. Altogether, we demonstrate a novel mutualistic bacterium-fungus relationship that occurs at a clinically relevant site to amplify the severity of a ubiquitous infectious disease. PMID:24566629

  13. Comparison of phenotypic and virulence genes characteristics in human and chicken isolates of Proteus mirabilis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barbour, Elie K; Hajj, Zahi G; Hamadeh, Shadi; Shaib, Houssam A; Farran, Mohamad T; Araj, George; Faroon, Obaid; Barbour, Kamil E; Jirjis, Faris; Azhar, Esam; Kumosani, Taha; Harakeh, Steve

    2012-10-01

    The objective of this work is to compare the phenotypic and virulence genes characteristics in human and chicken isolates of Proteus mirabilis. The bacterial examination of 50 livers of individual broilers, marketed by four major outlets, revealed a high recovery of P. mirabilis (66%), and a low recovery frequency of Salmonella spp. (4%), Serratia odorifera (2%), Citrobacter brakii (2%), and Providencia stuartii (2%). The phenotypic biochemical characterization of the recovered 33 chicken isolates of P. mirabilis were compared to 30 human isolates (23 urinary and six respiratory isolates). The comparison revealed significant differences in the presence of gelatinase enzyme (100% presence in chicken isolates versus 91.3 and 83.3% presence in human urinary and respiratory isolates, respectively, P,0.05). The H(2)S production occurred in 100% of chicken isolates versus 95.6 and 66.7% presence in human urinary and respiratory isolates, respectively, P,0.05). The other 17 biochemical characteristics did not differ significantly among the three groups of isolates (P.0.05). Two virulence genes, the mrpA and FliL, were having a typical 100% presence in randomly selected isolates of P. mirabilis recovered from chicken livers (N510) versus isolates recovered from urinary (N55) and respiratory specimens of humans (N55) (P.0.05). The average percentage similarity of mrpA gene nucleotide sequence of poultry isolates to human urinary and respiratory isolates was 93.2 and 97.5-%, respectively. The high similarity in phenotypic characteristics, associated with typical frequency of presence of two virulence genes, and high similarity in sequences of mrpA gene among poultry versus human P. mirabilis isolates justifies future investigations targeting the evaluation of adaptable pathogenicity of avian Proteus mirabilis isolates to mammalian hosts.

  14. Virulence evolution at the front line of spreading epidemics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Griette, Quentin; Raoul, Gaël; Gandon, Sylvain

    2015-11-01

    Understanding and predicting the spatial spread of emerging pathogens is a major challenge for the public health management of infectious diseases. Theoretical epidemiology shows that the speed of an epidemic is governed by the life-history characteristics of the pathogen and its ability to disperse. Rapid evolution of these traits during the invasion may thus affect the speed of epidemics. Here we study the influence of virulence evolution on the spatial spread of an epidemic. At the edge of the invasion front, we show that more virulent and transmissible genotypes are expected to win the competition with other pathogens. Behind the front line, however, more prudent exploitation strategies outcompete virulent pathogens. Crucially, even when the presence of the virulent mutant is limited to the edge of the front, the invasion speed can be dramatically altered by pathogen evolution. We support our analysis with individual-based simulations and we discuss the additional effects of demographic stochasticity taking place at the front line on virulence evolution. We confirm that an increase of virulence can occur at the front, but only if the carrying capacity of the invading pathogen is large enough. These results are discussed in the light of recent empirical studies examining virulence evolution at the edge of spreading epidemics. © 2015 The Author(s). Evolution © 2015 The Society for the Study of Evolution.

  15. Invasion thresholds and the evolution of nonequilibrium virulence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bull, James J; Ebert, Dieter

    2008-02-01

    The enterprise of virulence management attempts to predict how social practices and other factors affect the evolution of parasite virulence. These predictions are often based on parasite optima or evolutionary equilibria derived from models of host-parasite dynamics. Yet even when such models accurately capture the parasite optima, newly invading parasites will typically not be at their optima. Here we show that parasite invasion of a host population can occur despite highly nonoptimal virulence. Fitness improvements soon after invasion may proceed through many steps with wide changes in virulence, because fitness depends on transmission as well as virulence, and transmission improvements can overwhelm nonoptimal virulence. This process is highly sensitive to mutation supply and the strength of selection. Importantly, the same invasion principle applies to the evolution of established parasites, whenever mutants arise that overcome host immunity/resistance. A host population may consequently experience repeated invasions of new parasite variants and possible large shifts in virulence as it evolves in an arms race with the parasite. An experimental study of phage lysis time and examples of mammalian viruses matching some of these characteristics are reviewed.

  16. 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.

  17. Multilocus sequence typing and virulence analysis of Haemophilus parasuis strains isolated in five provinces of China.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Liyan; Ma, Lina; Liu, Yongan; Gao, Pengcheng; Li, Youquan; Li, Xuerui; Liu, Yongsheng

    2016-10-01

    Haemophilus parasuis is the etiological agent of Glässers disease, which causes high morbidity and mortality in swine herds. Although H. parasuis strains can be classified into 15 serovars with the Kielstein-Rapp-Gabrielson serotyping scheme, a large number of isolates cannot be classified and have been designated 'nontypeable' strains. In this study, multilocus sequence typing (MLST) of H. parasuis was used to analyze 48 H. parasuis field strains isolated in China and two strains from Australia. Twenty-six new alleles and 29 new sequence types (STs) were detected, enriching the H. parasuis MLST databases. A BURST analysis indicated that H. parasuis lacks stable population structure and is highly heterogeneous, and that there is no association between STs and geographic area. When an UPGMA dendrogram was constructed, two major clades, clade A and clade B, were defined. Animal experiments, in which guinea pigs were challenged intraperitoneally with the bacterial isolates, supported the hypothesis that the H. parasuis STs in clade A are generally avirulent or weakly virulent, whereas the STs in clade B tend to be virulent. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  18. A biphasic epigenetic switch controls immunoevasion, virulence and niche adaptation in non-typeable Haemophilus influenzae.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Atack, John M; Srikhanta, Yogitha N; Fox, Kate L; Jurcisek, Joseph A; Brockman, Kenneth L; Clark, Tyson A; Boitano, Matthew; Power, Peter M; Jen, Freda E-C; McEwan, Alastair G; Grimmond, Sean M; Smith, Arnold L; Barenkamp, Stephen J; Korlach, Jonas; Bakaletz, Lauren O; Jennings, Michael P

    2015-07-28

    Non-typeable Haemophilus influenzae contains an N(6)-adenine DNA-methyltransferase (ModA) that is subject to phase-variable expression (random ON/OFF switching). Five modA alleles, modA2, modA4, modA5, modA9 and modA10, account for over two-thirds of clinical otitis media isolates surveyed. Here, we use single molecule, real-time (SMRT) methylome analysis to identify the DNA-recognition motifs for all five of these modA alleles. Phase variation of these alleles regulates multiple proteins including vaccine candidates, and key virulence phenotypes such as antibiotic resistance (modA2, modA5, modA10), biofilm formation (modA2) and immunoevasion (modA4). Analyses of a modA2 strain in the chinchilla model of otitis media show a clear selection for ON switching of modA2 in the middle ear. Our results indicate that a biphasic epigenetic switch can control bacterial virulence, immunoevasion and niche adaptation in an animal model system.

  19. Clostridium difficile is an autotrophic bacterial pathogen.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michael Köpke

    Full Text Available During the last decade, Clostridium difficile infection showed a dramatic increase in incidence and virulence in the Northern hemisphere. This incessantly challenging disease is the leading cause of antibiotic-associated and nosocomial infectious diarrhea and became life-threatening especially among elderly people. It is generally assumed that all human bacterial pathogens are heterotrophic organisms, being either saccharolytic or proteolytic. So far, this has not been questioned as colonization of the human gut gives access to an environment, rich in organic nutrients. Here, we present data that C. difficile (both clinical and rumen isolates is also able to grow on CO2+H2 as sole carbon and energy source, thus representing the first identified autotrophic bacterial pathogen. Comparison of several different strains revealed high conservation of genes for autotrophic growth and showed that the ability to use gas mixtures for growth decreases or is lost upon prolonged culturing under heterotrophic conditions. The metabolic flexibility of C. difficile (heterotrophic growth on various substrates as well as autotrophy could allow the organism in the gut to avoid competition by niche differentiation and contribute to its survival when stressed or in unfavorable conditions that cause death to other bacteria. This may be an important trait for the pathogenicity of C. difficile.

  20. Detection of virulence factors and molecular typing of pathogenic Leptospira from capybara (Hydrochaeris hydrochaeris).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jorge, Sérgio; Monte, Leonardo G; Coimbra, Marco Antonio; Albano, Ana Paula; Hartwig, Daiane D; Lucas, Caroline; Seixas, Fabiana K; Dellagostin, Odir A; Hartleben, Cláudia P

    2012-10-01

    Leptospirosis is a globally prevalent zoonosis caused by pathogenic Leptospira spp.; several serologic variants have reservoirs in synanthropic rodents. The capybara is the largest living rodent in the world, and it has a wide geographical distribution in Central and South America. This rodent is a significant source of Leptospira since the agent is shed via urine into the environment and is a potential public health threat. In this study, we isolated and identified by molecular techniques a pathogenic Leptospira from capybara in southern Brazil. The isolated strain was characterized by partial rpoB gene sequencing and variable-number tandem-repeats analysis as L. interrogans, serogroup Icterohaemorrhagiae. In addition, to confirm the expression of virulence factors, the bacterial immunoglobulin-like proteins A and B expression was detected by indirect immunofluorescence using leptospiral specific monoclonal antibodies. This report identifies capybaras as an important source of infection and provides insight into the epidemiology of leptospirosis.

  1. Type 1 fimbrial expression enhances Escherichia coli virulence for the urinary tract

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Connell, Hugh; Agace, William; Klemm, Per

    1996-01-01

    of Escherichia coli for the urinary tract by promoting bacterial persistence and enhancing the inflammatory responce to infection. In a clinical study, we observed that disease severity was greater in children infected with E. coli O1:K1:H7 isolates expressing type 1 fimbriae than in those infected with type 1...... negative isolates of the same serotype. The E. coli O1:K1:H7 isolates had the same electrophoretic type, were hemolysin-negative, expressed P fimbriae, and carried the fim DNA sequences. When tested in a mouse urinary tract infection model, the type 1-positive E. coli O1:K1:H7 isolates survived inhigher...... urinary tract infection model. E. coli CN1016 reconstituted with type 1 fimbriae had restored virulence similar to that of the wild-type parent strain. These results show that type 1 fimbriae in the genetic background of a uropathogenic strain contribute to the pathogenesis of E. coli in the urinary tract....

  2. Polyamines Are Required for Virulence in Salmonella enterica Serovar Typhimurium

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jelsbak, Lotte; Thomsen, Line Elnif; Wallrodt, Inke

    2012-01-01

    for studying typhoid fever. Central to its virulence are two major virulence loci Salmonella Pathogenicity Island 1 and 2 (SPI1 and SPI2). SPI1 promotes invasion of epithelial cells, whereas SPI2 enables S. Typhimurium to survive and proliferate within specialized compartments inside host cells. In this study......, we show that an S. Typhimurium polyamine mutant is defective for invasion, intracellular survival, killing of the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans and systemic infection of the mouse model of typhoid fever. Virulence of the mutant could be restored by genetic complementation, and invasion...

  3. Vibrio vulnificus Type 6 Secretion System 1 Contains Anti-Bacterial Properties.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Selina R Church

    Full Text Available Vibrio vulnificus is a bacterium responsible for severe gastroenteritis, sepsis and wound infections. Gastroenteritis and sepsis are commonly associated with the consumption of raw oysters, whereas wound infection is often associated with the handling of contaminated fish. Although classical virulence factors of this emerging pathogen are well characterised, there remains a paucity of knowledge regarding the general biology of this species. To investigate the presence of previously unreported virulence factors, we applied whole genome sequencing to a panel of ten V. vulnificus strains with varying virulence potentials. This identified two novel type 6 secretion systems (T6SSs, systems that are known to have a role in bacterial virulence and population dynamics. By utilising a range of molecular techniques and assays we have demonstrated the functionality of one of these T6SSs. Furthermore, we have shown that this system is subject to thermoregulation and is negatively regulated by increasing salinity concentrations. This secretion system was also shown to be involved in the killing of V. vulnificus strains that did not possess this system and a model is proposed as to how this interaction may contribute to population dynamics within V. vulnificus strains. In addition to this intra-species killing, this system also contributes to the killing of inter bacterial species and may have a role in the general composition of Vibrio species in the environment.

  4. Signal Integration in Quorum Sensing Enables Cross-Species Induction of Virulence in Pectobacterium wasabiae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rita S. Valente

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available Bacterial communities can sense their neighbors, regulating group behaviors in response to cell density and environmental changes. The diversity of signaling networks in a single species has been postulated to allow custom responses to different stimuli; however, little is known about how multiple signals are integrated and the implications of this integration in different ecological contexts. In the plant pathogen Pectobacterium wasabiae (formerly Erwinia carotovora, two signaling networks—the N-acyl homoserine lactone (AHL quorum-sensing system and the Gac/Rsm signal transduction pathway—control the expression of secreted plant cell wall-degrading enzymes, its major virulence determinants. We show that the AHL system controls the Gac/Rsm system by affecting the expression of the regulatory RNA RsmB. This regulation is mediated by ExpR2, the quorum-sensing receptor that responds to the P. wasabiae cognate AHL but also to AHLs produced by other bacterial species. As a consequence, this level of regulation allows P. wasabiae to bypass the Gac-dependent regulation of RsmB in the presence of exogenous AHLs or AHL-producing bacteria. We provide in vivo evidence that this pivotal role of RsmB in signal transduction is important for the ability of P. wasabiae to induce virulence in response to other AHL-producing bacteria in multispecies plant lesions. Our results suggest that the signaling architecture in P. wasabiae was coopted to prime the bacteria to eavesdrop on other bacteria and quickly join the efforts of other species, which are already exploiting host resources.

  5. Staphylococcus aureus hyaluronidase is a CodY-regulated virulence factor.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ibberson, Carolyn B; Jones, Crystal L; Singh, Shweta; Wise, Matthew C; Hart, Mark E; Zurawski, Daniel V; Horswill, Alexander R

    2014-10-01

    Staphylococcus aureus is a Gram-positive pathogen that causes a diverse range of bacterial infections. Invasive S. aureus strains secrete an extensive arsenal of hemolysins, immunomodulators, and exoenzymes to cause disease. Our studies have focused on the secreted enzyme hyaluronidase (HysA), which cleaves the hyaluronic acid polymer at the β-1,4 glycosidic bond. In the study described in this report, we have investigated the regulation and contribution of this enzyme to S. aureus pathogenesis. Using the Nebraska Transposon Mutant Library (NTML), we identified eight insertions that modulate extracellular levels of HysA activity. Insertions in the sigB operon, as well as in genes encoding the global regulators SarA and CodY, significantly increased HysA protein levels and activity. By altering the availability of branched-chain amino acids, we further demonstrated CodY-dependent repression of HysA activity. Additionally, through mutation of the CodY binding box upstream of hysA, the repression of HysA production was lost, suggesting that CodY is a direct repressor of hysA expression. To determine whether HysA is a virulence factor, a ΔhysA mutant of a community-associated methicillin-resistant S. aureus (CA-MRSA) USA300 strain was constructed and found to be attenuated in a neutropenic, murine model of pulmonary infection. Mice infected with this mutant strain exhibited a 4-log-unit reduction in bacterial burden in their lungs, as well as reduced lung pathology and increased levels of pulmonary hyaluronic acid, compared to mice infected with the wild-type, parent strain. Taken together, these results indicate that S. aureus hyaluronidase is a CodY-regulated virulence factor. Copyright © 2014, American Society for Microbiology. All Rights Reserved.

  6. The phytopathogenic virulent effector protein RipI induces apoptosis in budding yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deng, Meng-Ying; Sun, Yun-Hao; Li, Pai; Fu, Bei; Shen, Dong; Lu, Yong-Jun

    2016-10-01

    Virulent protein toxins secreted by the bacterial pathogens can cause cytotoxicity by various molecular mechanisms to combat host cell defense. On the other hand, these proteins can also be used as probes to investigate the defense pathway of host innate immunity. Ralstonia solanacearum, one of the most virulent bacterial phytopathogens, translocates more than 70 effector proteins via type III secretion system during infection. Here, we characterized the cytotoxicity of effector RipI in budding yeast Saccharomyce scerevisiae, an alternative host model. We found that over-expression of RipI resulted in severe growth defect and arginine (R) 117 within the predicted integrase motif was required for inhibition of yeast growth. The phenotype of death manifested the hallmarks of apoptosis. Our data also revealed that RipI-induced apoptosis was independent of Yca1 and mitochondria-mediated apoptotic pathways because Δyca1 and Δaif1 were both sensitive to RipI as compared with the wild type. We further demonstrated that RipI was localized in the yeast nucleus and the N-terminal 1-174aa was required for the localization. High-throughput RNA sequencing analysis showed that upon RipI over-expression, 101 unigenes of yeast ribosome presented lower expression level, and 42 GO classes related to the nucleus or recombination were enriched with differential expression levels. Taken together, our data showed that a nuclear-targeting effector RipI triggers yeast apoptosis, potentially dependent on its integrase function. Our results also provided an alternative strategy to dissect the signaling pathway of cytotoxicity induced by the protein toxins. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  7. Bacterial Pathogens and Community Composition in Advanced Sewage Treatment Systems Revealed by Metagenomics Analysis Based on High-Throughput Sequencing

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lu, Xin; Zhang, Xu-Xiang; Wang, Zhu; Huang, Kailong; Wang, Yuan; Liang, Weigang; Tan, Yunfei; Liu, Bo; Tang, Junying

    2015-01-01

    This study used 454 pyrosequencing, Illumina high-throughput sequencing and metagenomic analysis to investigate bacterial pathogens and their potential virulence in a sewage treatment plant (STP) applying both conventional and advanced treatment processes. Pyrosequencing and Illumina sequencing consistently demonstrated that Arcobacter genus occupied over 43.42% of total abundance of potential pathogens in the STP. At species level, potential pathogens Arcobacter butzleri, Aeromonas hydrophila and Klebsiella pneumonia dominated in raw sewage, which was also confirmed by quantitative real time PCR. Illumina sequencing also revealed prevalence of various types of pathogenicity islands and virulence proteins in the STP. Most of the potential pathogens and virulence factors were eliminated in the STP, and the removal efficiency mainly depended on oxidation ditch. Compared with sand filtration, magnetic resin seemed to have higher removals in most of the potential pathogens and virulence factors. However, presence of the residual A. butzleri in the final effluent still deserves more concerns. The findings indicate that sewage acts as an important source of environmental pathogens, but STPs can effectively control their spread in the environment. Joint use of the high-throughput sequencing technologies is considered a reliable method for deep and comprehensive overview of environmental bacterial virulence. PMID:25938416

  8. Bacterial cooperation in the wild and in the clinic: are pathogen social behaviours relevant outside the laboratory?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harrison, Freya

    2013-02-01

    Individual bacterial cells can communicate via quorum sensing, cooperate to harvest nutrients from their environment, form multicellular biofilms, compete over resources and even kill one another. When the environment that bacteria inhabit is an animal host, these social behaviours mediate virulence. Over the last decade, much attention has focussed on the ecology, evolution and pathology of bacterial cooperation, and the possibility that it could be exploited or destabilised to treat infections. But how far can we really extrapolate from theoretical predictions and laboratory experiments to make inferences about 'cooperative' behaviours in hosts and reservoirs? To determine the likely importance and evolution of cooperation 'in the wild', several questions must be addressed. A recent paper that reports the dynamics of bacterial cooperation and virulence in a field experiment provides an excellent nucleus for bringing together key empirical and theoretical results which help us to frame - if not completely to answer - these questions. Copyright © 2013 WILEY Periodicals, Inc.

  9. Exogenous Polyunsaturated Fatty Acids Impact Membrane Remodeling and Affect Virulence Phenotypes among Pathogenic Vibrio Species.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moravec, Anna R; Siv, Andrew W; Hobby, Chelsea R; Lindsay, Emily N; Norbash, Layla V; Shults, Daniel J; Symes, Steven J K; Giles, David K

    2017-11-15

    The pathogenic Vibrio species ( V. cholerae , V. parahaemolyticus , and V. vulnificus ) represent a constant threat to human health, causing foodborne and skin wound infections as a result of ingestion of or exposure to contaminated water and seafood. Recent studies have highlighted Vibrio 's ability to acquire fatty acids from environmental sources and assimilate them into cell membranes. The possession and conservation of such machinery provokes consideration of fatty acids as important factors in the pathogenic lifestyle of Vibrio species. The findings here link exogenous fatty acid exposure to changes in bacterial membrane phospholipid structure, permeability, phenotypes associated with virulence, and consequent stress responses that may impact survival and persistence of pathogenic Vibrio species. Polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs) (ranging in carbon length and unsaturation) supplied in growth medium were assimilated into bacterial phospholipids, as determined by thin-layer chromatography and liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry. The incorporation of fatty acids variably affected membrane permeability, as judged by uptake of the hydrophobic compound crystal violet. For each species, certain fatty acids were identified as affecting resistance to antimicrobial peptide treatment. Significant fluctuations were observed with regard to both motility and biofilm formation following growth in the presence of individual PUFAs. Our results illustrate the important and complex roles of exogenous fatty acids in the membrane physiology and virulence of a bacterial genus that inhabits aquatic and host environments containing an abundance of diverse fatty acids. IMPORTANCE Bacterial responses to fatty acids include, but are not limited to, degradation for metabolic gain, modification of membrane lipids, alteration of protein function, and regulation of gene expression. Vibrio species exhibit significant diversity with regard to the machinery known to participate in the

  10. Recent progresses on AI-2 bacterial quorum sensing inhibitors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhu, Peng; Li, Minyong

    2012-01-01

    Quorum sensing (QS) is a communication procedure that predominates gene expression in response to cell density and fluctuations in the neighboring environment as a result of discerning molecules termed autoinducers (AIs). It has been embroiled that QS can govern bacterial behaviors such as the secretion of virulence factors, biofilm formation, bioluminescence production, conjugation, sporulation and swarming motility. Autoinducer 2 (AI-2), a QS signaling molecule brought up to be involved in interspecies communication, exists in both gram-negative and -positive bacteria. Therefore, novel approaches to interrupt AI-2 quorum sensing are being recognized as next generation antimicrobials. In the present review article, we summarized recent progresses on AI-2 bacterial quorum sensing inhibitors and discussed their potential as the antibacterial agents.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bryan Utter

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

  12. Type IV Pili are required for virulence, twitching motility, and biofilm formation of acidovorax avenae subsp. Citrulli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bahar, Ofir; Goffer, Tal; Burdman, Saul

    2009-08-01

    Acidovorax avenae subsp. citrulli is the causal agent of bacterial fruit blotch (BFB), a threatening disease of watermelon, melon, and other cucurbits. Despite the economic importance of BFB, relatively little is known about basic aspects of the pathogen's biology and the molecular basis of its interaction with host plants. To identify A. avenae subsp. citrulli genes associated with pathogenicity, we generated a transposon (Tn5) mutant library on the background of strain M6, a group I strain of A. avenae subsp. citrulli, and screened it for reduced virulence by seed-transmission assays with melon. Here, we report the identification of a Tn5 mutant with reduced virulence that is impaired in pilM, which encodes a protein involved in assembly of type IV pili (TFP). Further characterization of this mutant revealed that A. avenae subsp. citrulli requires TFP for twitching motility and wild-type levels of biofilm formation. Significant reductions in virulence and biofilm formation as well as abolishment of twitching were also observed in insertional mutants affected in other TFP genes. We also provide the first evidence that group I strains of A. avenae subsp. citrulli can colonize and move through host xylem vessels.

  13. [Accumulation of the bvg- Bordetella pertussis a virulent mutants in the process of experimental whooping cough in mice].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Medkova, A Iu; Siniashina, L N; Rumiantseva, Iu P; Voronina, O L; Kunda, M S; Karataev, G I

    2013-01-01

    The duration of the persistence and dynamics of accumulation of insertion bvg- Bordetella pertussis mutants were studied in lungs of laboratory mice after intranasal and intravenous challenge by virulent bacteria of the causative agent of whooping cough. The capability of the virulent B. pertussis bacteria to long-term persistence in the body of mice was tested. Using the real-time PCR approximately hundred genome equivalents of the B. pertussis DNA were detected in lungs of mice in two months after infection regardless of the way of challenge. Using the bacterial test bacteria were identified during only four weeks after challenge. Bvg- B. pertussis avirulent mutants were accumulated for the infection time. The percentage of the avirulent bacteria in the B. pertussis population reached 50% in 7-9 weeks after challenge. The obtained results show that the laboratory mice can be used for study of the B. pertussis insertion mutant formation dynamics in vivo and confirm the hypothesis about insertional bvg- B. pertussis virulent mutants accumulation during development of pertussis infection in human.

  14. Genomic characterization, phylogenetic analysis, and identification of virulence factors in Aerococcus sanguinicola and Aerococcus urinae strains isolated from infection episodes

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Carkaci, Derya; Højholt, Katrine; Nielsen, Xiaohui Chen

    2017-01-01

    Aerococcus sanguinicola and Aerococcus urinae are emerging pathogens in clinical settings mostly being causative agents of urinary tract infections (UTIs), urogenic sepsis and more seldomly complicated infective endocarditis (IE). Limited knowledge exists concerning the pathogenicity of these two...... species. Eight clinical A. sanguinicola (isolated from 2009 to 2015) and 40 clinical A. urinae (isolated from 1984 to 2015) strains from episodes of UTIs, bacteremia, and IE were whole-genome sequenced (WGS) to analyze genomic diversity and characterization of virulence genes involved in the bacterial....... In conclusion, this is the first study dealing with WGS and comparative genomics of clinical A. sanguinicola and A. urinae strains from episodes of UTIs, bacteremia, and IE. Gene homologs associated with antiphagocytosis and bacterial adherence were identified and genetic variability was observed within A...

  15. Postviral Complications: Bacterial Pneumonia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Prasso, Jason E; Deng, Jane C

    2017-03-01

    Secondary bacterial pneumonia after viral respiratory infection remains a significant source of morbidity and mortality. Susceptibility is mediated by a variety of viral and bacterial factors, and complex interactions with the host immune system. Prevention and treatment strategies are limited to influenza vaccination and antibiotics/antivirals respectively. Novel approaches to identifying the individuals with influenza who are at increased risk for secondary bacterial pneumonias are urgently needed. Given the threat of further pandemics and the heightened prevalence of these viruses, more research into the immunologic mechanisms of this disease is warranted with the hope of discovering new potential therapies. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  16. Caenorhabditis elegans reveals novel Pseudomonas aeruginosa virulence mechanism

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Utari, Putri Dwi; Quax, Wim J.

    The susceptibility of Caenorhabditis elegans to different virulent phenotypes of Pseudomonas aeruginosa makes the worms an excellent model for studying host-pathogen interactions. Including the recently described liquid killing, five different killing assays are now available offering superb

  17. Helicobacter pylori virulence factors in development of gastric carcinoma.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Ming-Yi; Liu, Xiao-Fei; Gao, Xiao-Zhong

    2015-01-01

    Helicobacter pylori plays a vital role in the pathogenesis of gastric carcinoma. However, only a relatively small proportion of individuals infected with H. pylori develop gastric carcinoma. Differences in the incidence of gastric carcinoma among infected individuals can be explained, at least partly, by the different genotypes of H. pylori virulence factors. Thus far, many virulence factors of H. pylori, such as Cag PAI, VacA, OMPs and DupA, have been reported to be involved in the development of gastric cancer. The risk of developing gastric cancer during H. pylori infection is affected by specific host-microbe interactions that are independent of H. pylori virulence factors. In this review, we discuss virulence factors of H. pylori and their role in the development of gastric carcinoma that will provide further understanding of the biological interactions of H. pylori with the host.

  18. Molecular Detection of Virulence Genes and Antibiotic Resistance ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Pathogen, E. coli O157:H7, virulence genes, antibiotic-resistance, beef meat. Correspondence: ... box to the laboratory for further processing. Isolation and identification of ... Technologies (IDT) Inc, U.S.A. The sequences and annealing ...

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

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Li, C.H.; Cervantes, M.; Springer, D.J.; Boekhout, T.; Ruiz-Vazquez, R.M.; Torres-Martinez, S.R.; Heitman, J.; Lee, S.S.

    2011-01-01

    Mucor circinelloides is a zygomycete fungus and an emerging opportunistic pathogen in immunocompromised patients, especially transplant recipients and in some cases otherwise healthy individuals. We have discovered a novel example of size dimorphism linked to virulence. M. circinelloides is a

  20. Suppression of Virulence of Toxigenic Vibrio cholerae by Anethole through the Cyclic AMP (cAMP-cAMP Receptor Protein Signaling System.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M Shamim Hasan Zahid

    Full Text Available Use of natural compounds as antivirulence drugs could be an alternative therapeutic approach to modify the outcome of bacterial infections, particularly in view of growing resistance to available antimicrobials. Here, we show that sub-bactericidal concentration of anethole, a component of sweet fennel seed, could suppress virulence potential in O1 El Tor biotype strains of toxigenic Vibrio cholerae, the causative agent of the ongoing 7th cholera pandemic. The expression of cholera toxin (CT and toxin coregulated pilus (TCP, the major virulence factors of V. cholerae, is controlled through a regulatory cascade involving activation of ToxT with synergistic coupling interaction of ToxR/ToxS with TcpP/TcpH. We present evidence that anethole inhibits in vitro expression of CT and TCP in a toxT-dependent but toxR/toxS-independent manner and through repression of tcpP/tcpH, by using bead-ELISA, western blotting and quantitative real-time RT-PCR assays. The cyclic AMP (cAMP-cAMP receptor protein (CRP is a well-studied global signaling system in bacterial pathogens, and this complex is known to suppress expression of tcpP/tcpH in V. cholerae. We find that anethole influences the virulence regulatory cascade by over-expressing cyaA and crp genes. Moreover, suppression of toxigenic V. cholerae-mediated fluid accumulation in ligated ileum of rabbit by anethole demonstrates its potentiality as an antivirulence drug candidate against the diseases caused by toxigenic V. cholerae. Taken altogether, these results revealing a mechanism of virulence inhibition in V. cholerae by the natural compound anethole, may have relevance in designing antivirulence compounds, particularly against multiple antibiotic resistant bacterial pathogens.

  1. Suppression of Virulence of Toxigenic Vibrio cholerae by Anethole through the Cyclic AMP (cAMP)-cAMP Receptor Protein Signaling System.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zahid, M Shamim Hasan; Awasthi, Sharda Prasad; Asakura, Masahiro; Chatterjee, Shruti; Hinenoya, Atsushi; Faruque, Shah M; Yamasaki, Shinji

    2015-01-01

    Use of natural compounds as antivirulence drugs could be an alternative therapeutic approach to modify the outcome of bacterial infections, particularly in view of growing resistance to available antimicrobials. Here, we show that sub-bactericidal concentration of anethole, a component of sweet fennel seed, could suppress virulence potential in O1 El Tor biotype strains of toxigenic Vibrio cholerae, the causative agent of the ongoing 7th cholera pandemic. The expression of cholera toxin (CT) and toxin coregulated pilus (TCP), the major virulence factors of V. cholerae, is controlled through a regulatory cascade involving activation of ToxT with synergistic coupling interaction of ToxR/ToxS with TcpP/TcpH. We present evidence that anethole inhibits in vitro expression of CT and TCP in a toxT-dependent but toxR/toxS-independent manner and through repression of tcpP/tcpH, by using bead-ELISA, western blotting and quantitative real-time RT-PCR assays. The cyclic AMP (cAMP)-cAMP receptor protein (CRP) is a well-studied global signaling system in bacterial pathogens, and this complex is known to suppress expression of tcpP/tcpH in V. cholerae. We find that anethole influences the virulence regulatory cascade by over-expressing cyaA and crp genes. Moreover, suppression of toxigenic V. cholerae-mediated fluid accumulation in ligated ileum of rabbit by anethole demonstrates its potentiality as an antivirulence drug candidate against the diseases caused by toxigenic V. cholerae. Taken altogether, these results revealing a mechanism of virulence inhibition in V. cholerae by the natural compound anethole, may have relevance in designing antivirulence compounds, particularly against multiple antibiotic resistant bacterial pathogens.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2017-04-15

    Streptococcus mutans , an oral pathogen associated with dental caries, colonizes tooth surfaces as polymicrobial biofilms known as dental plaque. S. mutans expresses several virulence factors that allow the organism to tolerate environmental fluctuations and compete with other microorganisms. We recently identified a small hypothetical protein (90 amino acids) essential for the normal growth of the bacterium. Inactivation of the gene, SMU.2137, encoding this protein caused a significant growth defect and loss of various virulence-associated functions. An S. mutans strain lacking this gene was more sensitive to acid, temperature, osmotic, oxidative, and DNA damage-inducing stresses. In addition, we observed an altered protein profile and defects in biofilm formation, bacteriocin production, and natural competence development, possibly due to the fitness defect associated with SMU.2137 deletion. Transcriptome sequencing revealed that nearly 20% of the S. mutans genes were differentially expressed upon SMU.2137 deletion, thereby suggesting a pleiotropic effect. Therefore, we have renamed this hitherto uncharacterized gene as sprV ( s treptococcal p leiotropic r egulator of v irulence). The transcript levels of several relevant genes in the sprV mutant corroborated the phenotypes observed upon sprV deletion. Owing to its highly conserved nature, inactivation of the sprV ortholog in Streptococcus gordonii also resulted in poor growth and defective UV tolerance and competence development as in the case of S. mutans Our experiments suggest that SprV is functionally distinct from its homologs identified by structure and sequence homology. Nonetheless, our current work is aimed at understanding the importance of SprV in the S. mutans biology. IMPORTANCE Streptococcus mutans employs several virulence factors and stress resistance mechanisms to colonize tooth surfaces and cause dental caries. Bacterial pathogenesis is generally controlled by regulators of fitness that are

  3. Inorganic Polyphosphate Is Essential for Salmonella Typhimurium Virulence and Survival in Dictyostelium discoideum

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Macarena A. Varas

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available Inorganic polyphosphate (polyP deficiency in enteric bacterial pathogens reduces their ability to invade and establish systemic infections in different hosts. For instance, inactivation of the polyP kinase gene (ppk encoding the enzyme responsible for polyP biosynthesis reduces invasiveness and intracellular survival of Salmonella enterica serovar Typhimurium (S. Typhimurium in epithelial cells and macrophages in vitro. In addition, the virulence in vivo of a S. Typhimurium Δppk mutant is significantly reduced in a murine infection model. In spite of these observations, the role played by polyP during the Salmonella-host interaction is not well understood. The social amoeba Dictyostelium discoideum has proven to be a useful model for studying relevant aspects of the host-pathogen interaction. In fact, many intracellular pathogens can survive within D. discoideum cells using molecular mechanisms also required to survive within macrophages. Recently, we established that S. Typhimurium is able to survive intracellularly in D. discoideum and identified relevant genes linked to virulence that are crucial for this process. The aim of this study was to determine the effect of a polyP deficiency in S. Typhimurium during its interaction with D. discoideum. To do this, we evaluated the intracellular survival of wild-type and Δppk strains of S. Typhimurium in D. discoideum and the ability of these strains to delay the social development of the amoeba. In contrast to the wild-type strain, the Δppk mutant was unable to survive intracellularly in D. discoideum and enabled the social development of the amoeba. Both phenotypes were complemented using a plasmid carrying a copy of the ppk gene. Next, we simultaneously evaluated the proteomic response of both S. Typhimurium and D. discoideum during host-pathogen interaction via global proteomic profiling. The analysis of our results allowed the identification of novel molecular signatures that give insight into

  4. Virulence and Stress Responses of Shigella flexneri Regulated by PhoP/PhoQ

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zhiwei Lin

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available The two-component signal transduction system PhoP/PhoQ is an important regulator for stress responses and virulence in most Gram-negative bacteria, but characterization of PhoP/PhoQ in Shigella has not been thoroughly investigated. In the present study, we found that deletion of phoPQ (ΔphoPQ from Shigella flexneri 2a 301 (Sf301 resulted in a significant decline (reduced by more than 15-fold in invasion of HeLa cells and Caco-2 cells, and less inflammation (− or + compared to Sf301 (+++ in the guinea pig Sereny test. In low Mg2+ (10 μM medium or pH 5 medium, the ΔphoPQ strain exhibited a growth deficiency compared to Sf301. The ΔphoPQ strain was more sensitive than Sf301 to polymyxin B, an important antimicrobial agent for treating multi-resistant Gram-negative infections. By comparing the transcriptional profiles of ΔphoPQ and Sf301 using DNA microarrays, 117 differentially expressed genes (DEGs were identified, which were involved in Mg2+ transport, lipopolysaccharide modification, acid resistance, bacterial virulence, respiratory, and energy metabolism. Based on the reported PhoP box motif [(T/G GTTTA-5nt-(T/G GTTTA], we screened 38 suspected PhoP target operons in S. flexneri, and 11 of them (phoPQ, mgtA, slyB, yoaE, yrbL, icsA, yhiWX, rstA, hdeAB, pagP, and shf–rfbU-virK-msbB2 were demonstrated to be PhoP-regulated genes based on electrophoretic mobility shift assays and β-galactosidase assays. One of these PhoP-regulated genes, icsA, is a well-known virulence factor in S. flexneri. In conclusion, our data suggest that the PhoP/PhoQ system modulates S. flexneri virulence (in an icsA-dependent manner and stress responses of Mg2+, pH and antibacterial peptides.

  5. A Red Blood Cell Membrane-Camouflaged Nanoparticle Counteracts Streptolysin O-Mediated Virulence Phenotypes of Invasive Group A Streptococcus

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tamara Escajadillo

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available Group A Streptococcus (GAS, an important human-specific Gram-positive bacterial pathogen, is associated with a broad spectrum of disease, ranging from mild superficial infections such as pharyngitis and impetigo, to serious invasive infections including necrotizing fasciitis and streptococcal toxic shock syndrome. The GAS pore-forming streptolysin O (SLO is a well characterized virulence factor produced by nearly all GAS clinical isolates. High level expression of SLO is epidemiologically linked to intercontinental dissemination of hypervirulent clonotypes and poor clinical outcomes. SLO can trigger macrophage and neutrophil cell death and/or the inactivation of immune cell functions, and promotes tissue injury and bacterial survival in animal models of infection. In the present work, we describe how the pharmacological presentation of red blood cell (RBC derived biomimetic nanoparticles (“nanosponges” can sequester SLO and block the ability of GAS to damage host cells, thereby preserving innate immune function and increasing bacterial clearance in vitro and in vivo. Nanosponge administration protected human neutrophils, macrophages, and keratinocytes against SLO-mediated cytotoxicity. This therapeutic intervention prevented SLO-induced macrophage apoptosis and increased neutrophil extracellular trap formation, allowing increased GAS killing by the respective phagocytic cell types. In a murine model of GAS necrotizing skin infection, local administration of the biomimetic nanosponges was associated with decreased lesion size and reduced bacterial colony-forming unit recovery. Utilization of a toxin decoy and capture platform that inactivates the secreted SLO before it contacts the host cell membrane, presents a novel virulence factor targeted strategy that could be a powerful adjunctive therapy in severe GAS infections where morbidity and mortality are high despite antibiotic treatment.

  6. A virulence-associated filamentous bacteriophage of Neisseria meningitidis increases host-cell colonisation.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Emmanuelle Bille

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available Neisseria meningitidis is a commensal of human nasopharynx. In some circumstances, this bacteria can invade the bloodstream and, after crossing the blood brain barrier, the meninges. A filamentous phage, designated MDAΦ for Meningococcal Disease Associated, has been associated with invasive disease. In this work we show that the prophage is not associated with a higher virulence during the bloodstream phase of the disease. However, looking at the interaction of N. meningitidis with epithelial cells, a step essential for colonization of the nasopharynx, we demonstrate that the presence of the prophage, via the production of viruses, increases colonization of encapsulated meningococci onto monolayers of epithelial cells. The analysis of the biomass covering the epithelial cells revealed that meningococci are bound to the apical surface of host cells by few layers of heavily piliated bacteria, whereas, in the upper layers, bacteria are non-piliated but surrounded by phage particles which (i form bundles of filaments, and/or (ii are in some places associated with bacteria. The latter are likely to correspond to growing bacteriophages during their extrusion through the outer membrane. These data suggest that, as the biomass increases, the loss of piliation in the upper layers of the biomass does not allow type IV pilus bacterial aggregation, but is compensated by a large production of phage particles that promote bacterial aggregation via the formation of bundles of phage filaments linked to the bacterial cell walls. We propose that MDAΦ by increasing bacterial colonization in the mucosa at the site-of-entry, increase the occurrence of diseases.

  7. Invasion thresholds and the evolution of nonequilibrium virulence

    OpenAIRE

    Bull, J. J.; Ebert, D.

    2008-01-01

    Abstract The enterprise of virulence management attempts to predict how social practices and other factors affect the evolution of parasite virulence. These predictions are often based on parasite optima or evolutionary equilibria derived from models of host-parasite dynamics. Yet even when such models accurately capture the parasite optima, newly invading parasites will typically not be at their optima. Here we show that parasite invasion of a host population can occur despite highly nonopti...

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

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    McCutchen-Maloney, S L; Fitch, J P

    2005-02-08

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

  9. Catecholamines promote the expression of virulence and oxidative stress genes in Porphyromonas gingivalis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Graziano, T S; Closs, P; Poppi, T; Franco, G C; Cortelli, J R; Groppo, F C; Cogo, K

    2014-10-01

    Stress has been identified as an important risk factor in the development of many infectious diseases, including periodontitis. Porphyromonas gingivalis, a gram-negative oral anaerobic bacterium, is considered an important pathogen in chronic periodontitis. Microorganisms, including P. gingivalis, that participate in infectious diseases have been shown to respond to catecholamines released during stress processes by modifying their growth and virulence. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to evaluate the effects of adrenaline and noradrenaline on the growth, antimicrobial susceptibility and gene expression in P. gingivalis. P. gingivalis was incubated in the presence of adrenaline and noradrenaline (100 μm) for different time-periods in rich (Tryptic soy broth supplemented with 0.2% yeast extract, 5 μg/mL of hemin and 1 μg/mL of menadione) and poor (serum-SAPI minimal medium and serum-SAPI minimal medium supplemented with 5 μg/mL of hemin and 1 μg/mL of menadione) media, and growth was evaluated based on absorbance at 660 nm. Bacterial susceptibility to metronidazole was examined after exposure to adrenaline and noradrenaline. The expression of genes involved in iron acquisition, stress oxidative protection and virulence were also evaluated using RT-quantitative PCR. Catecholamines did not interfere with the growth of P. gingivalis, regardless of nutritional or hemin conditions. In addition, bacterial susceptibility to metronidazole was not modified by exposure to adrenaline or noradrenaline. However, the expression of genes related to iron acquisition (hmuR), oxidative stress (tpx, oxyR, dps, sodB and aphC) and pathogenesis (hem, hagA and ragA) were stimulated upon exposure to adrenaline and/or noradrenaline. Adrenaline and noradrenaline can induce changes in gene expression related to oxidative stress and virulence factors in P. gingivalis. The present study is, in part, a step toward understanding the stress-pathogen interactions that may

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ann Ray

    2016-07-01

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

  11. Plasma membrane lipids and their role in fungal virulence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rella, Antonella; Farnoud, Amir M; Del Poeta, Maurizio

    2016-01-01

    There has been considerable evidence in recent years suggesting that plasma membrane lipids are important regulators of fungal pathogenicity. Various glycolipids have been shown to impart virulent properties in several fungal species, while others have been shown to play a role in host defense. In addition to their role as virulence factors, lipids also contribute to other virulence mechanisms such as drug resistance, biofilm formation, and release of extracellular vesicles. In addition, lipids also affect the mechanical properties of the plasma membrane through the formation of packed microdomains composed mainly of sphingolipids and sterols. Changes in the composition of lipid microdomains have been shown to disrupt the localization of virulence factors and affect fungal pathogenicity. This review gathers evidence on the various roles of plasma membrane lipids in fungal virulence and how lipids might contribute to the different processes that occur during infection and treatment. Insight into the role of lipids in fungal virulence can lead to an improved understanding of the process of fungal pathogenesis and the development of new lipid-mediated therapeutic strategies. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  12. Bacterial vaginosis - aftercare

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bacterial vaginosis (BV) is a type of vaginal infection. The vagina normally contains both healthy bacteria and unhealthy bacteria. BV occurs when more unhealthy bacteria grow than healthy bacteria. No one knows ...

  13. Bacterial surface adaptation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Utada, Andrew

    2014-03-01

    Biofilms are structured multi-cellular communities that are fundamental to the biology and ecology of bacteria. Parasitic bacterial biofilms can cause lethal infections and biofouling, but commensal bacterial biofilms, such as those found in the gut, can break down otherwise indigestible plant polysaccharides and allow us to enjoy vegetables. The first step in biofilm formation, adaptation to life on a surface, requires a working knowledge of low Reynolds number fluid physics, and the coordination of biochemical signaling, polysaccharide production, and molecular motility motors. These crucial early stages of biofilm formation are at present poorly understood. By adapting methods from soft matter physics, we dissect bacterial social behavior at the single cell level for several prototypical bacterial species, including Pseudomonas aeruginosa and Vibrio cholerae.

  14. Bacterial intermediate filaments

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Charbon, Godefroid; Cabeen, M.; Jacobs-Wagner, C.

    2009-01-01

    Crescentin, which is the founding member of a rapidly growing family of bacterial cytoskeletal proteins, was previously proposed to resemble eukaryotic intermediate filament (IF) proteins based on structural prediction and in vitro polymerization properties. Here, we demonstrate that crescentin...

  15. Diagnosis of bacterial infection

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    direct or indirect evidence of a compatible bacterial pathogen. Inflammation may be .... cardinal features (fever, confusion, headache and neck stiffness). .... specificity, inappropriate indications or poor sampling technique may diminish this ...

  16. The Trk Potassium Transporter Is Required for RsmB-Mediated Activation of Virulence in the Phytopathogen Pectobacterium wasabiae.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Valente, Rita S; Xavier, Karina B

    2016-01-15

    Pectobacterium wasabiae (previously known as Erwinia carotovora) is an important plant pathogen that regulates the production of plant cell wall-degrading enzymes through an N-acyl homoserine lactone-based quorum sensing system and through the GacS/GacA two-component system (also known as ExpS/ExpA). At high cell density, activation of GacS/GacA induces the expression of RsmB, a noncoding RNA that is essential for the activation of virulence in this bacterium. A genetic screen to identify regulators of RsmB revealed that mutants defective in components of a putative Trk potassium transporter (trkH and trkA) had decreased rsmB expression. Further analysis of these mutants showed that changes in potassium concentration influenced rsmB expression and consequent tissue damage in potato tubers and that this regulation required an intact Trk system. Regulation of rsmB expression by potassium via the Trk system occurred even in the absence of the GacS/GacA system, demonstrating that these systems act independently and are both required for full activation of RsmB and for the downstream induction of virulence in potato infection assays. Overall, our results identified potassium as an essential environmental factor regulating the Rsm system, and the consequent induction of virulence, in the plant pathogen P. wasabiae. Crop losses from bacterial diseases caused by pectolytic bacteria are a major problem in agriculture. By studying the regulatory pathways involved in controlling the expression of plant cell wall-degrading enzymes in Pectobacterium wasabiae, we showed that the Trk potassium transport system plays an important role in the regulation of these pathways. The data presented further identify potassium as an important environmental factor in the regulation of virulence in this plant pathogen. We showed that a reduction in virulence can be achieved by increasing the extracellular concentration of potassium. Therefore, this work highlights how elucidation of the

  17. Bacterial Infection of Fly Ovaries Reduces Egg Production and Induces Local Hemocyte Activation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brandt, Stephanie M.; Schneider, David S.

    2009-01-01

    Summary Morbidity, the state of being diseased, is an important aspect of pathogenesis that has gone relatively unstudied in fruit flies. Our interest is in characterizing how bacterial pathogenesis affects various physiologies of the fly. We chose to examine the fly ovary because we found bacterial infection had a striking effect on fly reproduction. We observed decreased egg laying after bacterial infection that correlated with increased bacterial virulence. We also found that bacteria colonized the ovary in a previously undescribed manner; bacteria were found in the posterior of the ovary, adjacent to the lateral oviduct. This local infection in the ovary resulted in melanization and activation of the cellular immune response at the site of infection. PMID:17400292

  18. Present and future etiological treatment of bacterial pneumonia 3. The antibacterial drugs under development

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    A.A. Abaturov

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available The rapid spread of antibiotic-resistant bacterial strains necessitates the development of new antibacterial agents and a review of the guidelines for etiological treatment of bacterial infections, including pneumonia. Currently, new antibacterial agents are being developed that disrupt the biosynthesis of peptidoglycan, teichoic and lipoteichoic acids, and also block the attachment of virulent factors to the bacterial wall. New molecules of old classes of antibiotics and representatives of new classes of antibiotics with their targets (lipid II and III, teichoic and lipoteichoic acids, alanine racemase, and sortase A will become practical tools in clinical practice in the very near future. The goals and mechanisms of action of new antibacterial compounds predetermine their clinical prospects in future strategies for the treatment of infectious bacterial diseases.

  19. CRISPR/Cas systems: new players in gene regulation and bacterial physiology

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    David eWeiss

    2014-04-01

    Full Text Available CRISPR-Cas systems are bacterial defenses against foreign nucleic acids derived from bacteriophages, plasmids or other sources. These systems are targeted in an RNA-dependent, sequence-specific manner, and are also adaptive, providing protection against previously encountered foreign elements. In addition to their canonical function in defense against foreign nucleic acid, their roles in various aspects of bacterial physiology are now being uncovered. We recently revealed a role for a Cas9-based Type II CRISPR-Cas system in the control of endogenous gene expression, a novel form of prokaryotic gene regulation. Cas9 functions in association with two small RNAs to target and alter the stability of an endogenous transcript encoding a bacterial lipoprotein (BLP. Since BLPs are recognized by the host innate immune protein Toll-like Receptor 2 (TLR2, CRISPR-Cas-mediated repression of BLP expression facilitates evasion of TLR2 by the intracellular bacterial pathogen Francisella novicida, and is essential for its virulence. Here we describe the Cas9 regulatory system in detail, as well as data on its role in controlling virulence traits of Neisseria meningitidis and Campylobacter jejuni. We also discuss potential roles of CRISPR-Cas systems in the response to envelope stress and other aspects of bacterial physiology. Since ~45% of bacteria and ~83% of Archaea encode these machineries, the newly appreciated regulatory functions of CRISPR-Cas systems are likely to play broad roles in controlling the pathogenesis and physiology of diverse prokaryotes.

  20. Virulence Factors of Pseudomonas aeruginosa Induce Both the Unfolded Protein and Integrated Stress Responses in Airway Epithelial Cells.

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    Emily F A van 't Wout

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available Pseudomonas aeruginosa infection can be disastrous in chronic lung diseases such as cystic fibrosis and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. Its toxic effects are largely mediated by secreted virulence factors including pyocyanin, elastase and alkaline protease (AprA. Efficient functioning of the endoplasmic reticulum (ER is crucial for cell survival and appropriate immune responses, while an excess of unfolded proteins within the ER leads to "ER stress" and activation of the "unfolded protein response" (UPR. Bacterial infection and Toll-like receptor activation trigger the UPR most likely due to the increased demand for protein folding of inflammatory mediators. In this study, we show that cell-free conditioned medium of the PAO1 strain of P. aeruginosa, containing secreted virulence factors, induces ER stress in primary bronchial epithelial cells as evidenced by splicing of XBP1 mRNA and induction of CHOP, GRP78 and GADD34 expression. Most aspects of the ER stress response were dependent on TAK1 and p38 MAPK, except for the induction of GADD34 mRNA. Using various mutant strains and purified virulence factors, we identified pyocyanin and AprA as inducers of ER stress. However, the induction of GADD34 was mediated by an ER stress-independent integrated stress response (ISR which was at least partly dependent on the iron-sensing eIF2α kinase HRI. Our data strongly suggest that this increased GADD34 expression served to protect against Pseudomonas-induced, iron-sensitive cell cytotoxicity. In summary, virulence factors from P. aeruginosa induce ER stress in airway epithelial cells and also trigger the ISR to improve cell survival of the host.

  1. Virulence Factors of Pseudomonas aeruginosa Induce Both the Unfolded Protein and Integrated Stress Responses in Airway Epithelial Cells

    Science.gov (United States)

    van ‘t Wout, Emily F. A.; van Schadewijk, Annemarie; van Boxtel, Ria; Dalton, Lucy E.; Clarke, Hanna J.; Tommassen, Jan; Marciniak, Stefan J.; Hiemstra, Pieter S.

    2015-01-01

    Pseudomonas aeruginosa infection can be disastrous in chronic lung diseases such as cystic fibrosis and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. Its toxic effects are largely mediated by secreted virulence factors including pyocyanin, elastase and alkaline protease (AprA). Efficient functioning of the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) is crucial for cell survival and appropriate immune responses, while an excess of unfolded proteins within the ER leads to “ER stress” and activation of the “unfolded protein response” (UPR). Bacterial infection and Toll-like receptor activation trigger the UPR most likely due to the increased demand for protein folding of inflammatory mediators. In this study, we show that cell-free conditioned medium of the PAO1 strain of P. aeruginosa, containing secreted virulence factors, induces ER stress in primary bronchial epithelial cells as evidenced by splicing of XBP1 mRNA and induction of CHOP, GRP78 and GADD34 expression. Most aspects of the ER stress response were dependent on TAK1 and p38 MAPK, except for the induction of GADD34 mRNA. Using various mutant strains and purified virulence factors, we identified pyocyanin and AprA as inducers of ER stress. However, the induction of GADD34 was mediated by an ER stress-independent integrated stress response (ISR) which was at least partly dependent on the iron-sensing eIF2α kinase HRI. Our data strongly suggest that this increased GADD34 expression served to protect against Pseudomonas-induced, iron-sensitive cell cytotoxicity. In summary, virulence factors from P. aeruginosa induce ER stress in airway epithelial cells and also trigger the ISR to improve cell survival of the host. PMID:26083346

  2. Poly-N-acetylglucosamine production in Staphylococcus aureus is essential for virulence in murine models of systemic infection.

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    Kropec, Andrea; Maira-Litran, Tomas; Jefferson, Kimberly K; Grout, Martha; Cramton, Sarah E; Götz, Friedrich; Goldmann, Donald A; Pier, Gerald B

    2005-10-01

    The contribution of the Staphylococcus aureus surface polysaccharide poly-N-acetylglucosamine (PNAG) to virulence was evaluated in three mouse models of systemic infection: bacteremia, renal abscess formation, and lethality following high-dose intraperitoneal (i.p.) infection. Deletion of the intercellular adhesin (ica) locus that encodes the biosynthetic enzymes for PNAG production in S. aureus strains Mn8, Newman, and NCTC 10833 resulted in mutant strains with significantly reduced abilities to maintain bacterial levels in blood following intravenous or i.p. injection, to spread systemically to the kidneys following i.p. injection, or to induce a moribund/lethal state following i.p. infection. In the bacteremia model, neither growth phase nor growth medium used to prepare the S. aureus inoculum affected the conclusion that PNAG production was needed for full virulence. As the SarA regulatory protein has been shown to affect ica transcription, PNAG synthesis, and biofilm formation, we also evaluated S. aureus strains Mn8 and 10833 deleted for the sarA gene in the renal infection model. A decrease in PNAG production was seen in sarA mutants using immunoblots of cell surface extracts but was insufficient to reduce the virulence of sarA-deleted strains in this model. S. aureus strains deleted for the ica genes were much more susceptible to antibody-independent opsonic killing involving human peripheral blood leukocytes and rabbit complement. Thus, PNAG confers on S. aureus resistance to killing mediated by these innate host immune mediators. Overall, PNAG production by S. aureus appears to be a critical virulence factor as assessed in murine models of systemic infection.

  3. Interleukin-10 induction is an important virulence function of the Yersinia pseudotuberculosis type III effector YopM.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McPhee, Joseph B; Mena, Patricio; Zhang, Yue; Bliska, James B

    2012-07-01

    Pathogenic Yersinia species modulate host immune responses through the activity of a plasmid-encoded type III secretion system and its associated effector proteins. One effector, YopM, is a leucine-rich-repeat-containing protein that is important for virulence in murine models of Yersinia infection. Although the mechanism by which YopM promotes virulence is unknown, we previously demonstrated that YopM was required for the induction of high levels of the immunosuppressive cytokine interleukin-10 (IL-10) in sera of C57BL/6J mice infected with Yersinia pseudotuberculosis. To determine if IL-10 production is important for the virulence function of YopM, C57BL/6J or congenic IL-10⁻/⁻ mice were infected intravenously with wild-type or yopM mutant Y. pseudotuberculosis strains. Analysis of cytokine levels in serum and bacterial colonization in the spleen and liver showed that YopM is required for IL-10 induction in C57BL/6J mice infected with either the IP32953 or the 32777 strain of Y. pseudotuberculosis, demonstrating that the phenotype is conserved in the species. In single-strain infections, the ability of the 32777ΔyopM mutant to colonize the liver was significantly increased by the delivery of exogenous IL-10 to C57BL/6J mice. In mixed infections, the competitive advantage of a yopM⁺ 32777 strain over an isogenic yopM mutant to colonize spleen and liver, as observed for C57BL/6J mice, was significantly reduced in IL-10⁻/⁻ animals. Thus, by experimentally controlling IL-10 levels in a mouse infection model, we obtained evidence that the induction of this cytokine is an important mechanism by which YopM contributes to Y. pseudotuberculosis virulence.

  4. Alternative paths to success in a parasite community: within-host competition can favor higher virulence or direct interference.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bashey, Farrah; Hawlena, Hadas; Lively, Curtis M

    2013-03-01

    Selection imposed by coinfection may vary with the mechanism of within-host competition between parasites. Exploitative competition is predicted to favor more virulent parasites, whereas interference competition may result in lower virulence. Here, we examine whether exploitative or interference competition determines the outcome of competition between two nematode species (Steinernema spp.), which in combination with their bacterial symbionts (Xenorhabdus spp.), infect and kill insect hosts. Multiple isolates of each nematode species, carrying their naturally associated bacteria, were characterized by (1) the rate at which they killed insect hosts, and by (2) the ability of their bacteria to interfere with each other's growth via bacteriocidal toxins called "bacteriocins." We found that both exploitative and interference abilities were important in predicting which species had a selective advantage in pairwise competition experiments. When nematodes carried bacteria that did not interact via bacteriocins, the faster killing isolate had a competitive advantage. Alternatively, nematodes could gain a competitive advantage when they carried bacteria able to inhibit the bacteria of their competitor. Thus, the combination of nematode/bacterial traits that led to competitive success depended on which isolates were paired, suggesting that variation in competitive interactions may be important for maintaining species diversity in this community. © 2012 The Author(s). Evolution© 2012 The Society for the Study of Evolution.

  5. Attenuation of quorum-sensing-dependent virulence factors and biofilm formation by medicinal plants against antibiotic resistant Pseudomonas aeruginosa

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    P. Sankar Ganesh

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available Pseudomonas aeruginosa use small signaling molecules such as acyl homoserine lactones (AHLs, which play an important role in release virulence factors and toxin for further establishment of host infection. Thus, involving with the QS system would provide alternative ways of preventing the pathogenicity. In the present study, totally six medicinal plants (Terminalia bellerica, Celastrus paniculatus, Kingiodendron pinnatum, Schleichera oleosa, Melastoma malabathricum, Garcinia gummi-gutta were screened for anti-QS activity using biomonitor strain of Chromobacterium violaceum CV12472. The primary screening of antimicrobial activity of all the plant extracts have inhibited the growth of tested bacterial species. Of these at the sub-minimum inhibitory concentration the methanol extract of T. bellerica (0.0625–0.5 mg/ml has significantly inhibited violacein production (20.07–66.22% in C. violaceum (CV12472. Consequently, the extract of T. bellerica has reduced the production of pyocyanin, exopolysaccharide and biofilm formation in P. aeruginosa strains. Fluorescence and scanning electron microscopy analysis confirmed the reduction of biofilm formation in P. aeruginosa strains when treated with T. bellerica. GC–MS analysis showed the active compounds inhibited the production of virulence factors of P. aeruginosa. The results suggest the possible use of this T. bellerica as an anti-QS and anti-biofilm agent to control Pseudomonas infection. Interference of QS provides an important means for the inhibition of bacterial virulence and thus aids in treatment strategies.

  6. Co-regulation of Iron Metabolism and Virulence Associated Functions by Iron and XibR, a Novel Iron Binding Transcription Factor, in the Plant Pathogen Xanthomonas

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pandey, Sheo Shankar; Patnana, Pradeep Kumar; Lomada, Santosh Kumar; Tomar, Archana; Chatterjee, Subhadeep

    2016-01-01

    Abilities of bacterial pathogens to adapt to the iron limitation present in hosts is critical to their virulence. Bacterial pathogens have evolved diverse strategies to coordinately regulate iron metabolism and virulence associated functions to maintain iron homeostasis in response to changing iron availability in the environment. In many bacteria the ferric uptake regulator (Fur) functions as transcription factor that utilize ferrous form of iron as cofactor to regulate transcription of iron metabolism and many cellular functions. However, mechanisms of fine-tuning and coordinated regulation of virulence associated function beyond iron and Fur-Fe2+ remain undefined. In this study, we show that a novel transcriptional regulator XibR (named X anthomonas iron binding regulator) of the NtrC family, is required for fine-tuning and co-coordinately regulating the expression of several iron regulated genes and virulence associated functions in phytopathogen Xanthomonas campestris pv. campestris (Xcc). Genome wide expression analysis of iron-starvation stimulon and XibR regulon, GUS assays, genetic and functional studies of xibR mutant revealed that XibR positively regulates functions involved in iron storage and uptake, chemotaxis, motility and negatively regulates siderophore production, in response to iron. Furthermore, chromatin immunoprecipitation followed by quantitative real-time PCR indicated that iron promoted binding of the XibR to the upstream regulatory sequence of operon’s involved in chemotaxis and motility. Circular dichroism spectroscopy showed that purified XibR bound ferric form of iron. Electrophoretic mobility shift assay revealed that iron positively affected the binding of XibR to the upstream regulatory sequences of the target virulence genes, an effect that was reversed by ferric iron chelator deferoxamine. Taken together, these data revealed that how XibR coordinately regulates virulence associated and iron metabolism functions in Xanthomonads in

  7. Co-regulation of Iron Metabolism and Virulence Associated Functions by Iron and XibR, a Novel Iron Binding Transcription Factor, in the Plant Pathogen Xanthomonas.

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    Sheo Shankar Pandey

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available Abilities of bacterial pathogens to adapt to the iron limitation present in hosts is critical to their virulence. Bacterial pathogens have evolved diverse strategies to coordinately regulate iron metabolism and virulence associated functions to maintain iron homeostasis in response to changing iron availability in the environment. In many bacteria the ferric uptake regulator (Fur functions as transcription factor that utilize ferrous form of iron as cofactor to regulate transcription of iron metabolism and many cellular functions. However, mechanisms of fine-tuning and coordinated regulation of virulence associated function beyond iron and Fur-Fe2+ remain undefined. In this study, we show that a novel transcriptional regulator XibR (named Xanthomonas iron binding regulator of the NtrC family, is required for fine-tuning and co-coordinately regulating the expression of several iron regulated genes and virulence associated functions in phytopathogen Xanthomonas campestris pv. campestris (Xcc. Genome wide expression analysis of iron-starvation stimulon and XibR regulon, GUS assays, genetic and functional studies of xibR mutant revealed that XibR positively regulates functions involved in iron storage and uptake, chemotaxis, motility and negatively regulates siderophore production, in response to iron. Furthermore, chromatin immunoprecipitation followed by quantitative real-time PCR indicated that iron promoted binding of the XibR to the upstream regulatory sequence of operon's involved in chemotaxis and motility. Circular dichroism spectroscopy showed that purified XibR bound ferric form of iron. Electrophoretic mobility shift assay revealed that iron positively affected the binding of XibR to the upstream regulatory sequences of the target virulence genes, an effect that was reversed by ferric iron chelator deferoxamine. Taken together, these data revealed that how XibR coordinately regulates virulence associated and iron metabolism functions in

  8. Prophage Rs551 and Its Repressor Gene orf14 Reduce Virulence and Increase Competitive Fitness of Its Ralstonia solanacearum Carrier Strain UW551.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ahmad, Abdelmonim Ali; Stulberg, Michael J; Huang, Qi

    2017-01-01

    We previously characterized a filamentous lysogenic bacteriophage, ϕRs551, isolated directly from the race 3 biovar 2 phylotype IIB sequevar 1 strain UW551 of Ralstonia solanacearum grown under normal culture conditions. The genome of ϕRs551 was identified with 100% identity in the deposited genomes of 11 race 3 biovar 2 phylotype IIB sequevar 1 strains of R. solanacearum , indicating evolutionary and biological importance, and ORF14 of ϕRs551 was annotated as a putative type-2 repressor. In this study, we determined the effect of the prophage and its ORF14 on the virulence and competitive fitness of its carrier strain UW551 by deleting the orf14 gene only (the UW551 orf14 mutant), and nine of the prophage's 14 genes including orf14 and six out of seven structural genes (the UW551 prophage mutant), respectively, from the genome of UW551. The two mutants were increased in extracellular polysaccharide production, twitching motility, expression of targeted virulence and virulence regulatory genes ( pilT, egl, pehC, hrPB, and phcA ), and virulence, suggesting that the virulence of UW551 was negatively regulated by ϕRs551, at least partially through ORF14. Interestingly, we found that the wt ϕRs551-carrying strain UW551 of R. solanacearum significantly outcompeted the wt strain RUN302 which lacks the prophage in tomato plants co-inoculated with the two strains. When each of the two mutant strains was co-inoculated with RUN302, however, the mutants were significantly out-competed by RUN302 for the same colonization site. Our results suggest that ecologically, ϕRs551 may play an important role by regulating the virulence of and offering a competitive fitness advantage to its carrier bacterial strain for persistence of the bacterium in the environment, which in turn prolongs the symbiotic relationship between the phage ϕRs551 and the R. solanacearum strain UW551. Our study is the first toward a better understanding of the co-existence between a lysogenic phage and

  9. Prophage Rs551 and Its Repressor Gene orf14 Reduce Virulence and Increase Competitive Fitness of Its Ralstonia solanacearum Carrier Strain UW551

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    Abdelmonim Ali Ahmad

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available We previously characterized a filamentous lysogenic bacteriophage, ϕRs551, isolated directly from the race 3 biovar 2 phylotype IIB sequevar 1 strain UW551 of Ralstonia solanacearum grown under normal culture conditions. The genome of ϕRs551 was identified with 100% identity in the deposited genomes of 11 race 3 biovar 2 phylotype IIB sequevar 1 strains of R. solanacearum, indicating evolutionary and biological importance, and ORF14 of ϕRs551 was annotated as a putative type-2 repressor. In this study, we determined the effect of the prophage and its ORF14 on the virulence and competitive fitness of its carrier strain UW551 by deleting the orf14 gene only (the UW551 orf14 mutant, and nine of the prophage’s 14 genes including orf14 and six out of seven structural genes (the UW551 prophage mutant, respectively, from the genome of UW551. The two mutants were increased in extracellular polysaccharide production, twitching motility, expression of targeted virulence and virulence regulatory genes (pilT, egl, pehC, hrPB, and phcA, and virulence, suggesting that the virulence of UW551 was negatively regulated by ϕRs551, at least partially through ORF14. Interestingly, we found that the wt ϕRs551-carrying strain UW551 of R. solanacearum significantly outcompeted the wt strain RUN302 which lacks the prophage in tomato plants co-inoculated with the two strains. When each of the two mutant strains was co-inoculated with RUN302, however, the mutants were significantly out-competed by RUN302 for the same colonization site. Our results suggest that ecologically, ϕRs551 may play an important role by regulating the virulence of and offering a competitive fitness advantage to its carrier bacterial strain for persistence of the bacterium in the environment, which in turn prolongs the symbiotic relationship between the phage ϕRs551 and the R. solanacearum strain UW551. Our study is the first toward a better understanding of the co-existence between a

  10. Prophage Rs551 and Its Repressor Gene orf14 Reduce Virulence and Increase Competitive Fitness of Its Ralstonia solanacearum Carrier Strain UW551

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ahmad, Abdelmonim Ali; Stulberg, Michael J.; Huang, Qi

    2017-01-01

    We previously characterized a filamentous lysogenic bacteriophage, ϕRs551, isolated directly from the race 3 biovar 2 phylotype IIB sequevar 1 strain UW551 of Ralstonia solanacearum grown under normal culture conditions. The genome of ϕRs551 was identified with 100% identity in the deposited genomes of 11 race 3 biovar 2 phylotype IIB sequevar 1 strains of R. solanacearum, indicating evolutionary and biological importance, and ORF14 of ϕRs551 was annotated as a putative type-2 repressor. In this study, we determined the effect of the prophage and its ORF14 on the virulence and competitive fitness of its carrier strain UW551 by deleting the orf14 gene only (the UW551 orf14 mutant), and nine of the prophage’s 14 genes including orf14 and six out of seven structural genes (the UW551 prophage mutant), respectively, from the genome of UW551. The two mutants were increased in extracellular polysaccharide production, twitching motility, expression of targeted virulence and virulence regulatory genes (pilT, egl, pehC, hrPB, and phcA), and virulence, suggesting that the virulence of UW551 was negatively regulated by ϕRs551, at least partially through ORF14. Interestingly, we found that the wt ϕRs551-carrying strain UW551 of R. solanacearum significantly outcompeted the wt strain RUN302 which lacks the prophage in tomato plants co-inoculated with the two strains. When each of the two mutant strains was co-inoculated with RUN302, however, the mutants were significantly out-competed by RUN302 for the same colonization site. Our results suggest that ecologically, ϕRs551 may play an important role by regulating the virulence of and offering a competitive fitness advantage to its carrier bacterial strain for persistence of the bacterium in the environment, which in turn prolongs the symbiotic relationship between the phage ϕRs551 and the R. solanacearum strain UW551. Our study is the first toward a better understanding of the co-existence between a lysogenic phage and

  11. The expression and evolution of virulence in multiple infections: the role of specificity, relative virulence and relative dose.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ben-Ami, Frida; Routtu, Jarkko

    2013-05-03

    Multiple infections of the same host by different strains of the same microparasite species are believed to play a crucial role during the evolution of parasite virulence. We investigated the role of specificity, relative virulence and relative dose in determining the competitive outcome of multiple infections in the Daphnia magna-Pasteuria ramosa host-parasite system. We found that infections by P. ramosa clones (single genotype) were less virulent and produced more spores than infections by P. ramosa isolates (possibly containing multiple genotypes). We also found that two similarly virulent isolates of P. ramosa differed considerably in their within-host competitiveness and their effects on host offspring production when faced with coinfecting P. ramosa isolates and clones. Although the relative virulence of a P. ramosa isolate/clone appears to be a good indicator of its competitiveness during multiple infections, the relative dose may alter the competitive outcome. Moreover, spore counts on day 20 post-infection indicate that the competitive outcome is largely decided early in the parasite's growth phase, possibly mediated by direct interference or apparent competition. Our results emphasize the importance of epidemiology as well as of various parasite traits in determining the outcome of within-host competition. Incorporating realistic epidemiological and ecological conditions when testing theoretical models of multiple infections, as well as using a wider range of host and parasite genotypes, will enable us to better understand the course of virulence evolution.

  12. Ribonucleotide reductase class III, an essential enzyme for the anaerobic growth of Staphylococcus aureus, is a virulence determinant in septic arthritis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kirdis, Ebru; Jonsson, Ing-Marie; Kubica, Malgorzata; Potempa, Jan; Josefsson, Elisabet; Masalha, Mahmud; Foster, Simon J; Tarkowski, Andrzej

    2007-01-01

    Staphylococcus aureus is the most common cause of joint infections. It also contributes to several other diseases such as pneumonia, osteomyelitis, endocarditis, and sepsis. Bearing in mind that S. aureus becomes rapidly resistant to new antibiotics, many studies survey the virulence factors, with the aim to find alternative prophylaxis/treatment regimens. One potential virulence factor is the bacterial ability to survive at different oxygen tensions. S. aureus expresses ribonucleotide reductases (RNRs), which help it to grow under both aerobic and anaerobic conditions, by reducing ribonucleotides to deoxyribonucleotides. In this study, we investigated the role of RNR class III, which is required for anaerobic growth, as a virulence determinant in the pathogenesis of staphylococcal arthritis. The wild-type S. aureus strain and its isogenic mutant nrdDG mutant were inoculated intravenously into mice. Mice inoculated with the wild-type strain displayed significantly more severe arthritis, with significantly more synovitis and destruction of the bone and cartilage versus mutant strain inoculated mice. Further, the persistence of bacteria in the kidneys was significantly more pronounced in the group inoculated with the wild-type strain. Together these results indicate that RNR class III is an important virulence factor for the establishment of septic arthritis.

  13. Deoxycholate-Enhanced Shigella Virulence Is Regulated by a Rare π-Helix in the Type Three Secretion System Tip Protein IpaD.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bernard, Abram R; Jessop, T Carson; Kumar, Prashant; Dickenson, Nicholas E

    2017-12-12

    Type three secretion systems (T3SS) are specialized nanomachines that support infection by injecting bacterial proteins directly into host cells. The Shigella T3SS has uniquely evolved to sense environmental levels of the bile salt deoxycholate (DOC) and upregulate virulence in response to DOC. In this study, we describe a rare i + 5 hydrogen bonding secondary structure element (π-helix) within the type three secretion system tip protein IpaD that plays a critical role in DOC-enhanced virulence. Specifically, engineered mutations within the π-helix altered the pathogen's response to DOC, with one mutant construct in particular exhibiting an unprecedented reduction in virulence following DOC exposure. Fluorescence polarization binding assays showed that these altered DOC responses are not the result of differences in affinity between IpaD and DOC, but rather differences in the DOC-dependent T3SS tip maturation resulting from binding of IpaD to translocator/effector protein IpaB. Together, these findings begin to uncover the complex mechanism of DOC-enhanced Shigella virulence while identifying an uncommon structural element that may provide a much needed target for non-antibiotic treatment of Shigella infection.

  14. [Role of CRISPR/Cas systems in drugresistance and virulence and the effect of IS600 on the expression of cse2 in Shigella].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hong, Lijuan; Zhang, Bing; Duan, Guangcai; Liang, Wenjuan; Wang, Yingfang; Chen, Shuaiyin; Yang, Haiyan; Xi, Yuanlin

    2016-12-04

    To analyze the relationship between CRISPR/Cas system and drug-resistance, virulence. To investigate the effect of IS600 on the expression of CRISPR associated gene cse2 in Shigella. CRISPR loci, CRISPR associated gene cse2, drug-resistant genes and virulent genes were detected by PCR in 33 Shigella strains; Trypan Blue counting test was used to detect bacterial virulence; Real-time PCR was used to detect relative mRNA expression of cse2; susceptibilities of Shigella strains were tested by agar diffusion method. Furthermore, we analyzed the relationship between CRISPR loci and drug-resistant genes, virulent genes. The effect of the IS600 on the expression of CRISPR associated gene cse2 was investigated. The mortality of Hela cells infected by Shigella with CRISPR1 loci was significantly lower (PShigella without CRISPR1. The mRNA expression level of cse2 in group with IS600 was significantly (PShigella. Shigella without CRISPR1 has a higher pathogenicity. Due to the insertion of IS600, the mRNA expression level of cse2 was decreased in Shigella.

  15. Interference in Bacterial Quorum Sensing: A Biopharmaceutical Perspective

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    Benjamin Rémy

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available Numerous bacteria utilize molecular communication systems referred to as quorum sensing (QS to synchronize the expression of certain genes regulating, among other aspects, the expression of virulence factors and the synthesis of biofilm. To achieve this process, bacteria use signaling molecules, known as autoinducers (AIs, as chemical messengers to share information. Naturally occurring strategies that interfere with bacterial signaling have been extensively studied in recent years, examining their potential to control bacteria. To interfere with QS, bacteria use quorum sensing inhibitors (QSIs to block the action of AIs and quorum quenching (QQ enzymes to degrade signaling molecules. Recent studies have shown that these strategies are promising routes to decrease bacterial pathogenicity and decrease biofilms, potentially enhancing bacterial susceptibility to antimicrobial agents including antibiotics and bacteriophages. The efficacy of QSIs and QQ enzymes has been demonstrated in various animal models and are now considered in the development of new medical devices against bacterial infections, including dressings, and catheters for enlarging the therapeutic arsenal against bacteria.

  16. Exploring anti-bacterial compounds against intracellular Legionella.

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    Christopher F Harrison

    Full Text Available Legionella pneumophila is a ubiquitous fresh-water bacterium which reproduces within its erstwhile predators, environmental amoeba, by subverting the normal pathway of phagocytosis and degradation. The molecular mechanisms which confer resistance to amoeba are apparently conserved and also allow replication within macrophages. Thus, L. pneumophila can act as an 'accidental' human pathogen and cause a severe pneumonia known as Legionnaires' disease. The intracellular localisation of L. pneumophila protects it from some antibiotics, and this fact must be taken into account to develop new anti-bacterial compounds. In addition, the intracellular lifestyle of L. pneumophila may render the bacteria susceptible to compounds diminishing bacterial virulence and decreasing intracellular survival and replication of this pathogen. The development of a single infection cycle intracellular replication assay using GFP-producing L. pneumophila and Acanthamoebacastellanii amoeba is reported here. This fluorescence-based assay allows for continuous monitoring of intracellular replication rates, revealing the effect of bacterial gene deletions or drug treatment. To examine how perturbations of the host cell affect L. pneumophila replication, several known host-targeting compounds were tested, including modulators of cytoskeletal dynamics, vesicle scission and Ras GTPase localisation. Our results reveal a hitherto unrealized potential antibiotic property of the β-lactone-based Ras depalmitoylation inhibitor palmostatin M, but not the closely related inhibitor palmostatin B. Further characterisation indicated that this compound caused specific growth inhibition of Legionella and Mycobacterium species, suggesting that it may act on a common bacterial target.

  17. Exploring Anti-Bacterial Compounds against Intracellular Legionella

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harrison, Christopher F.; Kicka, Sébastien; Trofimov, Valentin; Berschl, Kathrin; Ouertatani-Sakouhi, Hajer; Ackermann, Nikolaus; Hedberg, Christian; Cosson, Pierre; Soldati, Thierry; Hilbi, Hubert

    2013-01-01

    Legionella pneumophila is a ubiquitous fresh-water bacterium which reproduces within its erstwhile predators, environmental amoeba, by subverting the normal pathway of phagocytosis and degradation. The molecular mechanisms which confer resistance to amoeba are apparently conserved and also allow replication within macrophages. Thus, L. pneumophila can act as an ‘accidental’ human pathogen and cause a severe pneumonia known as Legionnaires’ disease. The intracellular localisation of L. pneumophila protects it from some antibiotics, and this fact must be taken into account to develop new anti-bacterial compounds. In addition, the intracellular lifestyle of L. pneumophila may render the bacteria susceptible to compounds diminishing bacterial virulence and decreasing intracellular survival and replication of this pathogen. The development of a single infection cycle intracellular replication assay using GFP-producing L. pneumophila and Acanthamoeba castellanii amoeba is reported here. This fluorescence-based assay allows for continuous monitoring of intracellular replication rates, revealing the effect of bacterial gene deletions or drug treatment. To examine how perturbations of the host cell affect L. pneumophila replication, several known host-targeting compounds were tested, including modulators of cytoskeletal dynamics, vesicle scission and Ras GTPase localisation. Our results reveal a hitherto unrealized potential antibiotic property of the β-lactone-based Ras depalmitoylation inhibitor palmostatin M, but not the closely related inhibitor palmostatin B. Further characterisation indicated that this compound caused specific growth inhibition of Legionella and Mycobacterium species, suggesting that it may act on a common bacterial target. PMID:24058631

  18. Structure of Rhodococcus equi virulence-associated protein B (VapB) reveals an eight-stranded antiparallel β-barrel consisting of two Greek-key motifs

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Geerds, Christina; Wohlmann, Jens; Haas, Albert; Niemann, Hartmut H.

    2014-01-01

    The structure of VapB, a member of the Vap protein family that is involved in virulence of the bacterial pathogen R. equi, was determined by SAD phasing and reveals an eight-stranded antiparallel β-barrel similar to avidin, suggestive of a binding function. Made up of two Greek-key motifs, the topology of VapB is unusual or even unique. Members of the virulence-associated protein (Vap) family from the pathogen Rhodococcus equi regulate virulence in an unknown manner. They do not share recognizable sequence homology with any protein of known structure. VapB and VapA are normally associated with isolates from pigs and horses, respectively. To contribute to a molecular understanding of Vap function, the crystal structure of a protease-resistant VapB fragment was determined at 1.4 Å resolution. The structure was solved by SAD phasing employing the anomalous signal of one endogenous S atom and two bound Co ions with low occupancy. VapB is an eight-stranded antiparallel β-barrel with a single helix. Structural similarity to avidins suggests a potential binding function. Unlike other eight- or ten-stranded β-barrels found in avidins, bacterial outer membrane proteins, fatty-acid-binding proteins and lysozyme inhibitors, Vaps do not have a next-neighbour arrangement but consist of two Greek-key motifs with strand order 41238567, suggesting an unusual or even unique topology

  19. Structure of Rhodococcus equi virulence-associated protein B (VapB) reveals an eight-stranded antiparallel β-barrel consisting of two Greek-key motifs

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Geerds, Christina [Bielefeld University, Universitaetsstrasse 25, 33615 Bielefeld (Germany); Wohlmann, Jens; Haas, Albert [University of Bonn, Ulrich-Haberland Strasse 61a, 53121 Bonn (Germany); Niemann, Hartmut H., E-mail: hartmut.niemann@uni-bielefeld.de [Bielefeld University, Universitaetsstrasse 25, 33615 Bielefeld (Germany)

    2014-06-18

    The structure of VapB, a member of the Vap protein family that is involved in virulence of the bacterial pathogen R. equi, was determined by SAD phasing and reveals an eight-stranded antiparallel β-barrel similar to avidin, suggestive of a binding function. Made up of two Greek-key motifs, the topology of VapB is unusual or even unique. Members of the virulence-associated protein (Vap) family from the pathogen Rhodococcus equi regulate virulence in an unknown manner. They do not share recognizable sequence homology with any protein of known structure. VapB and VapA are normally associated with isolates from pigs and horses, respectively. To contribute to a molecular understanding of Vap function, the crystal structure of a protease-resistant VapB fragment was determined at 1.4 Å resolution. The structure was solved by SAD phasing employing the anomalous signal of one endogenous S atom and two bound Co ions with low occupancy. VapB is an eight-stranded antiparallel β-barrel with a single helix. Structural similarity to avidins suggests a potential binding function. Unlike other eight- or ten-stranded β-barrels found in avidins, bacterial outer membrane proteins, fatty-acid-binding proteins and lysozyme inhibitors, Vaps do not have a next-neighbour arrangement but consist of two Greek-key motifs with strand order 41238567, suggesting an unusual or even unique topology.

  20. The Major Outer Membrane Protein MopB Is Required for Twitching Movement and Affects Biofilm Formation and Virulence in Two Xylella fastidiosa strains.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Hongyu; Kandel, Prem P; Cruz, Luisa F; Cobine, Paul A; De La Fuente, Leonardo

    2017-11-01

    MopB is a major outer membrane protein (OMP) in Xylella fastidiosa, a bacterial plant pathogen that causes losses on many economically important crops. Based on in silico analysis, the uncharacterized MopB protein of X. fastidiosa contains a β-barrel structure with an OmpA-like domain and a predicted calcium-binding motif. Here, MopB function was studied by mutational analysis taking advantage of the natural competence of X. fastidiosa. Mutants of mopB were constructed in two different X. fastidiosa strains, the type strain Temecula and the more virulent WM1-1. Deletion of the mopB gene impaired cell-to-cell aggregation, surface attachment, and biofilm formation in both strains. Interestingly, mopB deletion completely abolished twitching motility. Electron microscopy of the bacterial cell surface revealed that mopB deletion eliminated type IV and type I pili formation, potentially caused by destabilization of the outer membrane. Both mopB mutants showed reduced virulence using tobacco (Nicotiana tabacum) as a host under greenhouse conditions. These results suggest that MopB has pleiotropic functions in biofilm formation and twitching motility and is important for virulence of X. fastidiosa.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2010-12-29

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2011-06-01

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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fei Sun

    2010-12-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2017-01-10

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2018-05-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    1995-06-01

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

  7. Znu is the predominant zinc importer in Yersinia pestis during in vitro growth but is not essential for virulence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Desrosiers, Daniel C; Bearden, Scott W; Mier, Ildefonso; Abney, Jennifer; Paulley, James T; Fetherston, Jacqueline D; Salazar, Juan C; Radolf, Justin D; Perry, Robert D

    2010-12-01

    Little is known about Zn homeostasis in Yersinia pestis, the plague bacillus. The Znu ABC transporter is essential for zinc (Zn) uptake and virulence in a number of bacterial pathogens. Bioinformatics analysis identified ZnuABC as the only apparent high-affinity Zn uptake system in Y. pestis. Mutation of znuACB caused a growth defect in Chelex-100-treated PMH2 growth medium, which was alleviated by supplementation with submicromolar concentrations of Zn. Use of transcriptional reporters confirmed that Zur mediated Zn-dependent repression and that it can repress gene expression in response to Zn even in the absence of Znu. Virulence testing in mouse models of bubonic and pneumonic plague found only a modest increase in survival in low-dose infections by the znuACB mutant. Previous studies of cluster 9 (C9) transporters suggested that Yfe, a well-characterized C9 importer for manganese (Mn) and iron in Y. pestis, might function as a second, high-affinity Zn uptake system. Isothermal titration calorimetry revealed that YfeA, the solute-binding protein component of Yfe, binds Mn and Zn with comparably high affinities (dissociation constants of 17.8 ± 4.4 nM and 6.6 ± 1.2 nM, respectively), although the complete Yfe transporter could not compensate for the loss of Znu in in vitro growth studies. Unexpectedly, overexpression of Yfe interfered with the znu mutant's ability to grow in low concentrations of Zn, while excess Zn interfered with the ability of Yfe to import iron at low concentrations; these results suggest that YfeA can bind Zn in the bacterial cell but that Yfe is incompetent for transport of the metal. In addition to Yfe, we have now eliminated MntH, FetMP, Efe, Feo, a substrate-binding protein, and a putative nickel transporter as the unidentified, secondary Zn transporter in Y. pestis. Unlike other bacterial pathogens, Y. pestis does not require Znu for high-level infectivity and virulence; instead, it appears to possess a novel class of transporter

  8. Proteolysis of plasminogen activator inhibitor-1 by Yersinia pestis remodulates the host environment to promote virulence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eddy, J L; Schroeder, J A; Zimbler, D L; Caulfield, A J; Lathem, W W

    2016-09-01

    Essentials Effect of plasminogen activator inhibitor (PAI)-1 on plague and its Y. pestis cleavage is unknown. An intranasal mouse model of infection was used to determine the role of PAI-1 in pneumonic plague. PAI-1 is cleaved and inactivated by the Pla protease of Y. pestis in the lung airspace. PAI-1 impacts both bacterial outgrowth and the immune response to respiratory Y. pestis infection. Click to hear Dr Bock discuss pathogen activators of plasminogen. Background The hemostatic regulator plasminogen activator inhibitor-1 (PAI-1) inactivates endogenous plasminogen activators and aids in the immune response to bacterial infection. Yersinia pestis, the causative agent of plague, produces the Pla protease, a virulence factor that is required during plague. However, the specific hemostatic proteins cleaved by Pla in vivo that contribute to pathogenesis have not yet been fully elucidated. Objectives To determine whether PAI-1 is cleaved by the Pla protease during pneumonic plague, and to d