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Sample records for governs virulence expression

  1. Chromosomal “Stress-Response” Domains Govern the Spatiotemporal Expression of the Bacterial Virulence Program

    PubMed Central

    Jiang, Xuejiao; Sobetzko, Patrick; Reverchon, Sylvie; Muskhelishvili, Georgi

    2015-01-01

    ABSTRACT Recent studies strongly suggest that the gene expression sustaining both normal and pathogenic bacterial growth is governed by the structural dynamics of the chromosome. However, the mechanistic device coordinating the chromosomal configuration with selective expression of the adaptive traits remains largely unknown. We used a holistic approach exploring the inherent relationships between the physicochemical properties of the DNA and the expression of adaptive traits, including virulence factors, in the pathogen Dickeya dadantii (formerly Erwinia chrysanthemi). In the transcriptomes obtained under adverse conditions encountered during bacterial infection, we explored the patterns of chromosomal DNA sequence organization, supercoil dynamics, and gene expression densities, together with the long-range regulatory impacts of the abundant DNA architectural proteins implicated in pathogenicity control. By integrating these data, we identified transient chromosomal domains of coherent gene expression featuring distinct couplings between DNA thermodynamic stability, supercoil dynamics, and virulence traits. PMID:25922390

  2. Regulatory principles governing Salmonella and Yersinia virulence

    PubMed Central

    Erhardt, Marc; Dersch, Petra

    2015-01-01

    Enteric pathogens such as Salmonella and Yersinia evolved numerous strategies to survive and proliferate in different environmental reservoirs and mammalian hosts. Deciphering common and pathogen-specific principles for how these bacteria adjust and coordinate spatiotemporal expression of virulence determinants, stress adaptation, and metabolic functions is fundamental to understand microbial pathogenesis. In order to manage sudden environmental changes, attacks by the host immune systems and microbial competition, the pathogens employ a plethora of transcriptional and post-transcriptional control elements, including transcription factors, sensory and regulatory RNAs, RNAses, and proteases, to fine-tune and control complex gene regulatory networks. Many of the contributing global regulators and the molecular mechanisms of regulation are frequently conserved between Yersinia and Salmonella. However, the interplay, arrangement, and composition of the control elements vary between these closely related enteric pathogens, which generate phenotypic differences leading to distinct pathogenic properties. In this overview we present common and different regulatory networks used by Salmonella and Yersinia to coordinate the expression of crucial motility, cell adhesion and invasion determinants, immune defense strategies, and metabolic adaptation processes. We highlight evolutionary changes of the gene regulatory circuits that result in different properties of the regulatory elements and how this influences the overall outcome of the infection process. PMID:26441883

  3. Aspergillus fumigatus MedA governs adherence, host cell interactions and virulence

    PubMed Central

    Gravelat, Fabrice N.; Ejzykowicz, Daniele E.; Chiang, Lisa Y.; Chabot, Josée C.; Urb, Mirjam; Macdonald, K. Denyese; al-Bader, Nadia; Filler, Scott G.; Sheppard, Donald C.

    2010-01-01

    In medically important fungi, regulatory elements that control development and asexual reproduction often govern the expression of virulence traits. We therefore cloned the Aspergillus fumigatus developmental modifier MedA and characterized its role in conidiation, host cell interactions and virulence. As in the model organism Aspergillus nidulans, disruption of medA in A. fumigatus dramatically reduced conidiation. However, the conidiophore morphology was markedly different between the two species. Further, gene expression analysis suggested that MedA governs conidiation through different pathways in A. fumigatus compared to A. nidulans. The A. fumigatus ΔmedA strain was impaired in biofilm production and adherence to plastic, as well as adherence to pulmonary epithelial cells, endothelial cells and fibronectin in vitro. The ΔmedA strain also had reduced capacity to damage pulmonary epithelial cells, and stimulate pro-inflammatory cytokine mRNA and protein expression. Consistent with these results, the A. fumigatus ΔmedA strain also exhibited reduced virulence in both an invertebrate and a mammalian model of invasive aspergillosis. Collectively these results suggest that the downstream targets of A. fumigatus MedA mediate virulence, and may provide novel therapeutic targets for invasive aspergillosis. PMID:19889083

  4. Carbohydrate Availability Regulates Virulence Gene Expression in Streptococcus suis

    PubMed Central

    Ferrando, M. Laura; van Baarlen, Peter; Orrù, Germano; Piga, Rosaria; Bongers, Roger S.; Wels, Michiel; De Greeff, Astrid; Smith, Hilde E.; Wells, Jerry M.

    2014-01-01

    Streptococcus suis is a major bacterial pathogen of young pigs causing worldwide economic problems for the pig industry. S. suis is also an emerging pathogen of humans. Colonization of porcine oropharynx by S. suis is considered to be a high risk factor for invasive disease. In the oropharyngeal cavity, where glucose is rapidly absorbed but dietary α-glucans persist, there is a profound effect of carbohydrate availability on the expression of virulence genes. Nineteen predicted or confirmed S. suis virulence genes that promote adhesion to and invasion of epithelial cells were expressed at higher levels when S. suis was supplied with the α-glucan starch/pullulan compared to glucose as the single carbon source. Additionally the production of suilysin, a toxin that damages epithelial cells, was increased more than ten-fold when glucose levels were low and S. suis was growing on pullulan. Based on biochemical, bioinformatics and in vitro and in vivo gene expression studies, we developed a biological model that postulates the effect of carbon catabolite repression on expression of virulence genes in the mucosa, organs and blood. This research increases our understanding of S. suis virulence mechanisms and has important implications for the design of future control strategies including the development of anti-infective strategies by modulating animal feed composition. PMID:24642967

  5. Carbohydrate availability regulates virulence gene expression in Streptococcus suis.

    PubMed

    Ferrando, M Laura; van Baarlen, Peter; Orrù, Germano; Piga, Rosaria; Bongers, Roger S; Wels, Michiel; De Greeff, Astrid; Smith, Hilde E; Wells, Jerry M

    2014-01-01

    Streptococcus suis is a major bacterial pathogen of young pigs causing worldwide economic problems for the pig industry. S. suis is also an emerging pathogen of humans. Colonization of porcine oropharynx by S. suis is considered to be a high risk factor for invasive disease. In the oropharyngeal cavity, where glucose is rapidly absorbed but dietary α-glucans persist, there is a profound effect of carbohydrate availability on the expression of virulence genes. Nineteen predicted or confirmed S. suis virulence genes that promote adhesion to and invasion of epithelial cells were expressed at higher levels when S. suis was supplied with the α-glucan starch/pullulan compared to glucose as the single carbon source. Additionally the production of suilysin, a toxin that damages epithelial cells, was increased more than ten-fold when glucose levels were low and S. suis was growing on pullulan. Based on biochemical, bioinformatics and in vitro and in vivo gene expression studies, we developed a biological model that postulates the effect of carbon catabolite repression on expression of virulence genes in the mucosa, organs and blood. This research increases our understanding of S. suis virulence mechanisms and has important implications for the design of future control strategies including the development of anti-infective strategies by modulating animal feed composition. PMID:24642967

  6. Calcineurin Governs Thermotolerance and Virulence of Cryptococcus gattii

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Ying-Lien; Lehman, Virginia N.; Lewit, Yonathan; Averette, Anna F.; Heitman, Joseph

    2013-01-01

    The pathogenic yeast Cryptococcus gattii, which is causing an outbreak in the Pacific Northwest region of North America, causes life-threatening pulmonary infections and meningoencephalitis in healthy individuals, unlike Cryptococcus neoformans, which commonly infects immunocompromised patients. In addition to a greater predilection for C. gattii to infect healthy hosts, the C. gattii genome sequence project revealed extensive chromosomal rearrangements compared with C. neoformans, showing genomic differences between the two Cryptococcus species. We investigated the roles of C. gattii calcineurin in three molecular types: VGIIa (R265), VGIIb (R272), and VGI (WM276). We found that calcineurin exhibits a differential requirement for growth on solid medium at 37°, as calcineurin mutants generated from R265 were more thermotolerant than mutants from R272 and WM276. We demonstrated that tolerance to calcineurin inhibitors (FK506, CsA) at 37° is linked with the VGIIa molecular type. The calcineurin mutants from the R272 background showed the most extensive growth and morphological defects (multivesicle and larger ring-like cells), as well as increased fluconazole susceptibility. Our cellular architecture examination showed that C. gattii and C. neoformans calcineurin mutants exhibit plasma membrane disruptions. Calcineurin in the C. gattii VGII molecular type plays a greater role in controlling cation homeostasis compared with that in C. gattii VGI and C. neoformans H99. Importantly, we demonstrate that C. gattii calcineurin is essential for virulence in a murine inhalation model, supporting C. gattii calcineurin as an attractive antifungal drug target. PMID:23450261

  7. Exploration of Modulated Genetic Circuits Governing Virulence Determinants in Staphylococcus aureus.

    PubMed

    Arya, Rekha; Princy, S Adline

    2016-03-01

    The expression of virulence genes in the human pathogen Staphylococcus aureus is strongly influenced by the multiple global regulators. The signal transduction cascade of these global regulators is accountable for recognizing and integrating the environmental cues to regulate the virulence regulon. While the production of virulent factors by individual global regulators are comparatively straightforward to define, auto-regulation of these global regulators and their impact on other regulators is more complex process. There are several reports on the production of virulent factors that are precisely regulated by switching processes of multiple global regulators including some prominent accessory regulators such as agr, sae and sar which allows S. aureus to coordinate the gene expression, and thus, provide organism an ability to act collectively. This review implicates the mechanisms involved in the global regulation of various virulence factors along with a comprehensive discussion on the differences between these signal transduction systems, their auto-induction and, coordination of classical and some comparatively new bacterial signal transduction systems. PMID:26843693

  8. Rgg influences the expression of multiple regulatory loci to coregulate virulence factor expression in Streptococcus pyogenes.

    PubMed

    Chaussee, Michael S; Sylva, Gail L; Sturdevant, Daniel E; Smoot, Laura M; Graham, Morag R; Watson, Robert O; Musser, James M

    2002-02-01

    The human pathogen Streptococcus pyogenes secretes many proteins to the cell wall and extracellular environment that contribute to virulence. Rgg regulates the expression of several exoproteins including a cysteine protease (SPE B), a nuclease (MF-1), a putative nuclease (MF-3), and autolysin. The functional heterogeneity of Rgg-regulated exoproteins and the lack of a conserved regulatory motif in the promoter regions of the genes suggested that Rgg interacts with additional regulatory networks to influence gene expression. DNA microarrays were used to test this hypothesis by comparing genomewide transcript profiles of S. pyogenes NZ131 and isogenic derivative NZ131 rgg during the exponential phase of growth. Transcripts of known and putative virulence-associated genes were more abundant in the rgg mutant, including emm, scpA, orfX, scl1, hasAB, slo, sagA, ska, speH, grab, mac, mf-1, and mf-3. Increased transcription of emm, scpA, and orfX in the rgg mutant was associated with increased production of the corresponding proteins. Differences in the expression of virulence-associated genes were associated with changes in the expression of several regulatory genes, including mga, sagA, csrRS, and fasBCA. The results show that Rgg influences the expression of multiple regulatory networks to coregulate virulence factor expression in S. pyogenes. PMID:11796609

  9. Subinhibitory Concentrations of Linezolid Reduce Staphylococcus aureus Virulence Factor Expression

    PubMed Central

    Bernardo, Katussevani; Pakulat, Norbert; Fleer, Silke; Schnaith, Annabelle; Utermöhlen, Olaf; Krut, Oleg; Müller, Stefan; Krönke, Martin

    2004-01-01

    The influence of the antibiotic linezolid on the secretion of exotoxins by Staphylococcus aureus was analyzed by sodium dodecyl sulfate-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis combined with matrix-assisted laser desorption ionization-time of flight mass spectrometry and Western blot analysis. S. aureus suspensions were treated with grading subinhibitory concentrations of linezolid (12.5, 25, 50, and 90% of MIC) at different stages of bacterial growth (i.e., an optical density at 540 nm [OD540] of 0.05 or 0.8). When added to S. aureus cultures at an OD540 of 0.05, linezolid reduced in a dose-dependent manner the secretion of specific virulence factors, including staphylococcal enterotoxin A (SEA) and SEB, bifunctional autolysin, autolysin, protein A, and alpha- and beta-hemolysins. In contrast, other presumably nontoxic exoproteins remained unchanged or even accumulated in supernatants in the presence of linezolid at a 90% MIC. Similarily, when added at OD540 of 0.8, that is, after quorum sensing, linezolid reduced the release of virulence factors, whereas the relative abundance of nontoxic exoproteins such as triacylglycerol lipase, glycerol ester hydrolase, DnaK, or translation elongation factor EF-Tu was found to be increased. Consistently, linezolid reduced in a dose-dependent manner the tumor necrosis factor-inducing activity secreted by S. aureus into the culture supernatants. The results of our study suggest that the expression of virulence factors in S. aureus is especially sensitive to the inhibition of protein synthesis by linezolid, which should be an advantage in the treatment of infections with toxin-producing S. aureus. PMID:14742208

  10. Erythritol triggers expression of virulence traits in Brucella melitensis

    PubMed Central

    Petersen, Erik; Rajashekara, Gireesh; Sanakkayala, Neelima; Eskra, Linda; Harms, Jerome; Splitter, Gary

    2013-01-01

    Erythritol is a four-carbon sugar preferentially utilized by Brucella spp. The presence of erythritol in the placentas of goats, cows, and pigs has been used to explain the localization of Brucella to these sites and the subsequent accumulation of large amounts of bacteria, eventually leading to abortion. Here we show that B. melitensis will also localize to an artificial site of erythritol within a mouse, providing a potential model system to study the pathogenesis of Brucella abortion. Immunohistological staining of the sites of erythritol within infected mice indicated a higher than expected proportion of extracellular bacteria. Ensuing experiments suggested intracellular B. melitensis was unable to replicate within macrophages in the presence of erythritol and that erythritol was able to reach the site of intracellular bacteria. The intracellular inhibition of growth was found to encourage the bacteria to replicate extracellularly rather than intracellularly, a particularly interesting development in Brucella pathogenesis. To determine the effect of erythritol on expression of B. melitensis genes, bacteria grown either with or without erythritol were analyzed by microarray. Two major virulence pathways were up-regulated in response to exposure to erythritol (the type IV secretion system VirB and flagellar proteins), suggesting a role for erythritol in virulence. PMID:23421980

  11. Erythritol triggers expression of virulence traits in Brucella melitensis.

    PubMed

    Petersen, Erik; Rajashekara, Gireesh; Sanakkayala, Neelima; Eskra, Linda; Harms, Jerome; Splitter, Gary

    2013-06-01

    Erythritol is a four-carbon sugar preferentially utilized by Brucella spp. The presence of erythritol in the placentas of goats, cows, and pigs has been used to explain the localization of Brucella to these sites and the subsequent accumulation of large amounts of bacteria, eventually leading to abortion. Here we show that Brucella melitensis will also localize to an artificial site of erythritol within a mouse, providing a potential model system to study the pathogenesis of Brucella abortion. Immunohistological staining of the sites of erythritol within infected mice indicated a higher than expected proportion of extracellular bacteria. Ensuing experiments suggested intracellular B. melitensis was unable to replicate within macrophages in the presence of erythritol and that erythritol was able to reach the site of intracellular bacteria. The intracellular inhibition of growth was found to encourage the bacteria to replicate extracellularly rather than intracellularly, a particularly interesting development in Brucella pathogenesis. To determine the effect of erythritol on expression of B. melitensis genes, bacteria grown either with or without erythritol were analyzed by microarray. Two major virulence pathways were up-regulated in response to exposure to erythritol (the type IV secretion system VirB and flagellar proteins), suggesting a role for erythritol in virulence. PMID:23421980

  12. Epigenetic Regulation of Virulence Gene Expression in Parasitic Protozoa.

    PubMed

    Duraisingh, Manoj T; Horn, David

    2016-05-11

    Protozoan parasites colonize numerous metazoan hosts and insect vectors through their life cycles, with the need to respond quickly and reversibly while encountering diverse and often hostile ecological niches. To succeed, parasites must also persist within individuals until transmission between hosts is achieved. Several parasitic protozoa cause a huge burden of disease in humans and livestock, and here we focus on the parasites that cause malaria and African trypanosomiasis. Efforts to understand how these pathogens adapt to survive in varied host environments, cause disease, and transmit between hosts have revealed a wealth of epigenetic phenomena. Epigenetic switching mechanisms appear to be ideally suited for the regulation of clonal antigenic variation underlying successful parasitism. We review the molecular players and complex mechanistic layers that mediate the epigenetic regulation of virulence gene expression. Understanding epigenetic processes will aid the development of antiparasitic therapeutics. PMID:27173931

  13. Impact of Hfq on Global Gene Expression and Virulence in Klebsiella pneumoniae

    PubMed Central

    Chiang, Ming-Ko; Lu, Min-Chi; Liu, Li-Cheng; Lin, Ching-Ting; Lai, Yi-Chyi

    2011-01-01

    Klebsiella pneumoniae is responsible for a wide range of clinical symptoms. How this bacterium adapts itself to ever-changing host milieu is still a mystery. Recently, small non-coding RNAs (sRNAs) have received considerable attention for their functions in fine-tuning gene expression at a post-transcriptional level to promote bacterial adaptation. Here we demonstrate that Hfq, an RNA-binding protein, which facilitates interactions between sRNAs and their mRNA targets, is critical for K. pneumoniae virulence. A K. pneumoniae mutant lacking hfq (Δhfq) failed to disseminate into extra-intestinal organs and was attenuated on induction of a systemic infection in a mouse model. The absence of Hfq was associated with alteration in composition of envelope proteins, increased production of capsular polysaccharides, and decreased resistance to H2O2, heat shock, and UV irradiation. Microarray-based transcriptome analyses revealed that 897 genes involved in numerous cellular processes were deregulated in the Δhfq strain. Interestingly, Hfq appeared to govern expression of many genes indirectly by affecting sigma factor RpoS and RpoE, since 19.5% (175/897) and 17.3% (155/897) of Hfq-dependent genes belong to the RpoE- and RpoS-regulon, respectively. These results indicate that Hfq regulates global gene expression at multiple levels to modulate the physiological fitness and virulence potential of K. pneumoniae. PMID:21779404

  14. Environmental regulation of expression of virulence determinants in Bordetella pertussis.

    PubMed Central

    Melton, A R; Weiss, A A

    1989-01-01

    The trans-activator vir is required for expression of all virulence-associated genes in Bordetella pertussis. The nature of the global regulation of these factors by vir and environmental signals was examined by Northern blot analysis and with beta-galactosidase transcriptional fusions in five vir-regulated genes. Northern blots suggested that vir regulates at the level of transcription since Vir- organisms did not exhibit detectable mRNA from vir-regulated loci. Environmental signals such as high levels of salts, nicotinic acid, and 6-chloronicotinic acid or growth at low temperatures were examined. Of all of the cations and anions examined, only SO4 ions eliminated transcription of vir-regulated genes and reduced transcription of vir itself, suggesting that global regulation is obtained by modifying expression of the essential component, vir. Organisms grown on 6-chloronicotinic acid or quinaldic acid did not have detectable transcription from vir-regulated loci. Modulation by nicotinic acid, on the other hand, was strain dependent, acting at the level of transcription in strain 18-323 but not in Tohama I derivatives. Growth at lower temperatures reduced, but did not eliminate, transcription from vir-regulated loci. At 28 degrees C the ratio of pertussis toxin mRNA to recA mRNA (a non-vir-regulated factor) was equivalent to that at 37 degrees C, suggesting that transcription at low temperatures is reduced in a proportional manner and need not involve vir. Images PMID:2478524

  15. DIFFERENTIAL GENE EXPRESSION OF PUTATIVE VIRULENCE GENES IN Flavobacterium columnare

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    A shot-gun genomic library of the Flavobacterium columnare ALG-530 virulent strain has been constructed and more than 3,000 clones have been sequenced to date (800 contigs). Based on sequence identity with putative known virulence genes from related species, seven genes were selected for differentia...

  16. Virulence of Shigella flexneri Hybrids Expressing Escherichia coli Somatic Antigens

    PubMed Central

    Gemski, P.; Sheahan, D. G.; Washington, O.; Formal, S. B.

    1972-01-01

    The genes controlling either Escherichia coli somatic antigen 8 or 25 were conjugally transferred to virulent Shigella flexneri 2a recipients to determine whether the aquisition of these antigens would affect the virulence of the resulting hybrid. A high proportion of such hybrids were found to be rough and hence were avirulent. Some smooth S. flexneri hybrids which replaced their native group antigens with E. coli factor 25 were still virulent in the animal models employed. All S. flexneri O-8 hybrids were uniformly avirulent. Our finding, that S. flexneri hybrids with the chemically divergent E. coli O-8 repeat unit are avirulent whereas some hybrids with the chemically related O-25 repeat unit retain virulence, suggests that the chemical composition and structure of the O side chain of somatic antigens may represent one determining factor for bacterial penetration of mucosal epithelial cells, the primary step in the pathogenesis of bacillary dysentery. Images PMID:4569915

  17. Temperature control of molecular circuit switch responsible for virulent phenotype expression in uropathogenic Escherichia coli

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Samoilov, Michael

    2010-03-01

    The behavior and fate of biological organisms are to a large extent dictated by their environment, which can be often viewed as a collection of features and constraints governed by physics laws. Since biological systems comprise networks of molecular interactions, one such key physical property is temperature, whose variations directly affect the rates of biochemical reactions involved. For instance, temperature is known to control many gene regulatory circuits responsible for pathogenicity in bacteria. One such example is type 1 fimbriae (T1F) -- the foremost virulence factor in uropathogenic E. coli (UPEC), which accounts for 80-90% of all community-acquired urinary tract infections (UTIs). The expression of T1F is randomly `phase variable', i.e. individual cells switch between virulent/fimbriate and avirulent/afimbriate phenotypes, with rates regulated by temperature. Our computational investigation of this process, which is based on FimB/FimE recombinase-mediated inversion of fimS DNA element, offers new insights into its discrete-stochastic kinetics. In particular, it elucidates the logic of T1F control optimization to the host temperature and contributes further understanding toward the development of novel therapeutic approaches to UPEC-caused UTIs.

  18. Regulation of bacterial virulence gene expression by cell envelope stress responses

    PubMed Central

    Flores-Kim, Josué; Darwin, Andrew J

    2014-01-01

    The bacterial cytoplasm lies within a multilayered envelope that must be protected from internal and external hazards. This protection is provided by cell envelope stress responses (ESRs), which detect threats and reprogram gene expression to ensure survival. Pathogens frequently need these ESRs to survive inside the host, where their envelopes face dangerous environmental changes and attack from antimicrobial molecules. In addition, some virulence genes have become integrated into ESR regulons. This might be because these genes can protect the cell envelope from damage by host molecules, or it might help ESRs to reduce stress by moderating the assembly of virulence factors within the envelope. Alternatively, it could simply be a mechanism to coordinate the induction of virulence gene expression with entry into the host. Here, we briefly describe some of the bacterial ESRs, followed by examples where they control virulence gene expression in both Gram-negative and Gram-positive pathogens. PMID:25603429

  19. FNR Regulates Expression of Important Virulence Factors Contributing to Pathogenicity of Uropathogenic Escherichia coli

    PubMed Central

    Barbieri, Nicolle L.; Nicholson, Bryon; Hussein, Ashraf; Cai, Wentong; Wannemuehler, Yvonne M.; Dell'Anna, Giuseppe; Logue, Catherine M.; Horn, Fabiana; Nolan, Lisa K.

    2014-01-01

    Uropathogenic Escherichia coli (UPEC) is responsible for the majority of urinary tract infections (UTIs), which are some of the world's most common bacterial infections of humans. Here, we examined the role of FNR (fumarate and nitrate reduction), a well-known global regulator, in the pathogenesis of UPEC infections. We constructed an fnr deletion mutant of UPEC CFT073 and compared it to the wild type for changes in virulence, adherence, invasion, and expression of key virulence factors. Compared to the wild type, the fnr mutant was highly attenuated in the mouse model of human UTI and showed severe defects in adherence to and invasion of bladder and kidney epithelial cells. Our results showed that FNR regulates motility and multiple virulence factors, including expression of type I and P fimbriae, modulation of hemolysin expression, and expression of a novel pathogenicity island involved in α-ketoglutarate metabolism under anaerobic conditions. Our results demonstrate that FNR is a key global regulator of UPEC virulence and controls expression of important virulence factors that contribute to UPEC pathogenicity. PMID:25245807

  20. RNA Helicase Important for Listeria monocytogenes Hemolytic Activity and Virulence Factor Expression

    PubMed Central

    Netterling, Sakura; Bäreclev, Caroline; Vaitkevicius, Karolis

    2015-01-01

    RNA helicases have been shown to be important for the function of RNA molecules at several levels, although their putative involvement in microbial pathogenesis has remained elusive. We have previously shown that Listeria monocytogenes DExD-box RNA helicases are important for bacterial growth, motility, ribosomal maturation, and rRNA processing. We assessed the importance of the RNA helicase Lmo0866 (here named CshA) for expression of virulence traits. We observed a reduction in hemolytic activity in a strain lacking CshA compared to the wild type. This phenomenon was less evident in strains lacking other RNA helicases. The reduced hemolysis was accompanied by lower expression of major listerial virulence factors in the ΔcshA strain, mainly listeriolysin O, but also to some degree the actin polymerizing factor ActA. Reduced expression of these virulence factors in the strain lacking CshA did not, however, correlate with a decreased level of the virulence regulator PrfA. When combining the ΔcshA knockout with a mutation creating a constitutively active PrfA protein (PrfA*), the effect of the ΔcshA knockout on LLO expression was negated. These data suggest a role for the RNA helicase CshA in posttranslational activation of PrfA. Surprisingly, although the expression of several virulence factors was reduced, the ΔcshA strain did not demonstrate any reduced ability to infect nonphagocytic cells compared to the wild-type strain. PMID:26483402

  1. Temperature-dependent expression of virulence genes in fish-pathogenic bacteria

    PubMed Central

    Guijarro, José A.; Cascales, Desirée; García-Torrico, Ana I.; García-Domínguez, Mario; Méndez, Jessica

    2015-01-01

    Virulence gene expression in pathogenic bacteria is modulated by environmental parameters. A key factor in this expression is temperature. Its effect on virulence gene expression in bacteria infecting warm-blooded hosts is well documented. Transcription of virulence genes in these bacteria is induced upon a shift from low environmental to a higher host temperature (37°C). Interestingly, host temperatures usually correspond to the optimum for growth of these pathogenic bacteria. On the contrary, in ectothermic hosts such as fish, molluscs, and amphibians, infection processes generally occur at a temperature lower than that for the optimal growth of the bacteria. Therefore, regulation of virulence gene expression in response to temperature shift has to be modulated in a different way to that which is found in bacteria infecting warm-blooded hosts. The current understanding of virulence gene expression and its regulation in response to temperature in fish-pathogenic bacteria is limited, but constant extension of our knowledge base is essential to enable a rational approach to the problem of the bacterial fish diseases affecting the aquaculture industry. This is an interesting issue and progress needs to be made in order to diminish the economic losses caused by these diseases. The intention of this review is, for the first time, to compile the scattered results existing in the field in order to lay the groundwork for future research. This article is an overview of those relevant virulence genes that are expressed at temperatures lower than that for optimal bacterial growth in different fish-pathogenic bacteria as well as the principal mechanisms that could be involved in their regulation. PMID:26217329

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

    PubMed Central

    Nielsen, Alex T.; Dolganov, Nadia A.; Rasmussen, Thomas; Otto, Glen; Miller, Michael C.; Felt, Stephen A.; Torreilles, Stéphanie; Schoolnik, Gary K.

    2010-01-01

    A fundamental, but unanswered question in host-pathogen interactions is the timing, localization and population distribution of virulence gene expression during infection. Here, microarray and in situ single cell expression methods were used to study Vibrio cholerae growth and virulence gene expression during infection of the rabbit ligated ileal loop model of cholera. Genes encoding the toxin-coregulated pilus (TCP) and cholera toxin (CT) were powerfully expressed early in the infectious process in bacteria adjacent to epithelial surfaces. Increased growth was found to co-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 mechanism that could

  3. The FTF gene family regulates virulence and expression of SIX effectors in Fusarium oxysporum.

    PubMed

    Niño-Sánchez, Jonathan; Casado-Del Castillo, Virginia; Tello, Vega; De Vega-Bartol, José J; Ramos, Brisa; Sukno, Serenella A; Díaz Mínguez, José María

    2016-09-01

    The FTF (Fusarium transcription factor) gene family comprises a single copy gene, FTF2, which is present in all the filamentous ascomycetes analysed, and several copies of a close relative, FTF1, which is exclusive to Fusarium oxysporum. An RNA-mediated gene silencing system was developed to target mRNA produced by all the FTF genes, and tested in two formae speciales: F. oxysporum f. sp. phaseoli (whose host is common bean) and F. oxysporum f. sp. lycopersici (whose host is tomato). Quantification of the mRNA levels showed knockdown of FTF1 and FTF2 in randomly isolated transformants of both formae speciales. The attenuation of FTF expression resulted in a marked reduction in virulence, a reduced expression of several SIX (Secreted In Xylem) genes, the best studied family of effectors in F. oxysporum, and lower levels of SGE1 (Six Gene Expression 1) mRNA, the presumptive regulator of SIX expression. Moreover, the knockdown mutants showed a pattern of colonization of the host plant similar to that displayed by strains devoid of FTF1 copies (weakly virulent strains). Gene knockout of FTF2 also resulted in a reduction in virulence, but to a lesser extent. These results demonstrate the role of the FTF gene expansion, mostly the FTF1 paralogues, as a regulator of virulence in F. oxysporum and suggest that the control of effector expression is the mechanism involved. PMID:26817616

  4. Bicarbonate Induces Vibrio cholerae Virulence Gene Expression by Enhancing ToxT Activity▿ †

    PubMed Central

    Abuaita, Basel H.; Withey, Jeffrey H.

    2009-01-01

    Vibrio cholerae is a gram-negative bacterium that is the causative agent of cholera, a severe diarrheal illness. The two biotypes of V. cholerae O1 capable of causing cholera, classical and El Tor, require different in vitro growth conditions for induction of virulence gene expression. Growth under the inducing conditions or infection of a host initiates a complex regulatory cascade that results in production of ToxT, a regulatory protein that directly activates transcription of the genes encoding cholera toxin (CT), toxin-coregulated pilus (TCP), and other virulence genes. Previous studies have shown that sodium bicarbonate induces CT expression in the V. cholerae El Tor biotype. However, the mechanism for bicarbonate-mediated CT induction has not been defined. In this study, we demonstrate that bicarbonate stimulates virulence gene expression by enhancing ToxT activity. Both the classical and El Tor biotypes produce inactive ToxT protein when they are cultured statically in the absence of bicarbonate. Addition of bicarbonate to the culture medium does not affect ToxT production but causes a significant increase in CT and TCP expression in both biotypes. Ethoxyzolamide, a potent carbonic anhydrase inhibitor, inhibits bicarbonate-mediated virulence induction, suggesting that conversion of CO2 into bicarbonate by carbonic anhydrase plays a role in virulence induction. Thus, bicarbonate is the first positive effector for ToxT activity to be identified. Given that bicarbonate is present at high concentration in the upper small intestine where V. cholerae colonizes, bicarbonate is likely an important chemical stimulus that V. cholerae senses and that induces virulence during the natural course of infection. PMID:19564378

  5. Intracellular and Interstitial Expression of Helicobacter pylori Virulence Genes in Gastric Precancerous Intestinal Metaplasia and Adenocarcinoma

    PubMed Central

    Semino-Mora, Cristina; Doi, Sonia Q.; Marty, Aileen; Simko, Vlado; Carlstedt, Ingemar; Dubois, Andre

    2008-01-01

    Gastric intestinal metaplasia (IM) and gastric cancer are associated with Helicobacter pylori, but the bacterium often is undetectable in these lesions. To unravel this apparent paradox, IM, H. pylori presence, and the expression of H. pylori virulence genes were quantified concurrently using histologic testing, in situ hybridization, and immunohistochemistry. H. pylori was detected inside metaplastic, dysplastic, and neoplastic epithelial cells, and cagA and babA2 expression was colocalized. Importantly, expression of cagA was significantly higher in patients with IM and adenocarcinoma than in control subjects. The preneoplastic “acidic” MUC2 mucin was detected only in the presence of H. pylori, and MUC2 expression was higher in patients with IM, dysplasia, and cancer. These novel findings are compatible with the hypothesis that all stages of gastric carcinogenesis are fostered by persistent intracellular expression of H. pylori virulence genes, especially cagA inside MUC2-producing precancerous gastric cells and pleomorphic cancer cells. PMID:12695995

  6. Low-shear modelled microgravity alters expression of virulence determinants of Staphylococcus aureus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rosado, Helena; Doyle, Marie; Hinds, Jason; Taylor, Peter W.

    2010-02-01

    Microbiological monitoring of air and surfaces within the ISS indicate that bacteria of the genus Staphylococcus are found with high frequency. Staphylococcus aureus, an opportunistic pathogen with the capacity to cause severe debilitating infection, constitutes a significant proportion of these isolates. Experiments conducted during short-term flight suggest that growth in microgravity leads to increases in bacterial antibiotic resistance and to cell wall changes. Growth under low-shear modelled microgravity (LSMMG) indicated that a reduced gravitational field acts as an environmental signal for expression of enhanced bacterial virulence in gram-negative pathogens. We therefore examined the effect of simulated microgravity on parameters of antibiotic susceptibility and virulence in methicillin-susceptible S. aureus isolates RF1, RF6 and RF11; these strains were grown in a high aspect ratio vessel under LSMMG and compared with cells grown under normal gravity (NG). There were no significant differences in antibiotic susceptibility of staphylococci grown under LSMMG compared to NG. LSMMG-induced reductions in synthesis of the pigment staphyloxanthin and the major virulence determinant α-toxin were noted. Significant changes in global gene expression were identified by DNA microarray analysis; with isolate RF6, the expression of hla and genes of the regulatory system saeR/saeS were reduced approximately two-fold. These data provide strong evidence that growth of S. aureus under modelled microgravity leads to a reduction in expression of virulence determinants.

  7. Differential Expression and Roles of Staphylococcus aureus Virulence Determinants during Colonization and Disease

    PubMed Central

    Jenkins, Amy; Diep, Binh An; Mai, Thuy T.; Vo, Nhung H.; Warrener, Paul; Suzich, Joann; Stover, C. Kendall

    2015-01-01

    ABSTRACT Staphylococcus aureus is a Gram-positive, commensal bacterium known to asymptomatically colonize the human skin, nares, and gastrointestinal tract. Colonized individuals are at increased risk for developing S. aureus infections, which range from mild skin and soft tissue infections to more severe diseases, such as endocarditis, bacteremia, sepsis, and osteomyelitis. Different virulence factors are required for S. aureus to infect different body sites. In this study, virulence gene expression was analyzed in two S. aureus isolates during nasal colonization, bacteremia and in the heart during sepsis. These models were chosen to represent the stepwise progression of S. aureus from an asymptomatic colonizer to an invasive pathogen. Expression of 23 putative S. aureus virulence determinants, representing protein and carbohydrate adhesins, secreted toxins, and proteins involved in metal cation acquisition and immune evasion were analyzed. Consistent upregulation of sdrC, fnbA, fhuD, sstD, and hla was observed in the shift between colonization and invasive pathogen, suggesting a prominent role for these genes in staphylococcal pathogenesis. Finally, gene expression data were correlated to the roles of the genes in pathogenesis by using knockout mutants in the animal models. These results provide insights into how S. aureus modifies virulence gene expression between commensal and invasive pathogens. PMID:25691592

  8. Mutation of luxS affects growth and virulence factor expression in Streptococcus pyogenes.

    PubMed

    Lyon, W R; Madden, J C; Levin, J C; Stein, J L; Caparon, M G

    2001-10-01

    Adaptive responses of bacteria that involve sensing the presence of other bacteria are often critical for proliferation and the expression of virulence characteristics. The autoinducer II (AI-2) pathway has recently been shown to be a mechanism for sensing other bacteria that is highly conserved among diverse bacterial species, including Gram-positive pathogens. However, a role for this pathway in the regulation of virulence factors in Gram-positive pathogens has yet to be established. In this study, we have inactivated luxS, an essential component of the AI-2 pathway, in the Gram-positive pathogen Streptococcus pyogenes. Analyses of the resulting mutants revealed the aberrant expression of several virulence properties that are regulated in response to growth phase, including enhanced haemolytic activity, and a dramatic reduction in the expression of secreted proteolytic activity. This latter defect was associated with a reduced ability to secrete and process the precursor of the cysteine protease (SpeB) as well as a difference in the timing of expression of the protease. Enhanced haemolytic activity of the luxS strain was also shown to be linked with an increased expression of the haemolysin S-associated gene sagA. Disruptions of luxS in these mutants also produced a media-dependent growth defect. Finally, an allelic replacement analysis of an S. pyogenes strain with a naturally occurring insertion of IS1239 in luxS suggested a mechanism for modulation of virulence during infection. Results from this study suggest that luxS makes an important contribution to the regulation of S. pyogenes virulence factors. PMID:11679074

  9. Effect of starvation on survival and virulence expression of Aeromonas hydrophila from different sources.

    PubMed

    Casabianca, Anna; Orlandi, Chiara; Barbieri, Federica; Sabatini, Luigia; Di Cesare, Andrea; Sisti, Davide; Pasquaroli, Sonia; Magnani, Mauro; Citterio, Barbara

    2015-04-01

    Aeromonas hydrophila is an aquatic bacterium responsible for several human illnesses. The aim of this work was to investigate the survival ability and virulence expression of two strains from different sources (fish, strain 87 and surface water, strain LS) maintained in a seawater microcosm. The strains were analyzed for the total and viable bacterial counts, adhesion ability to Hep-2 cells and aerA gene expression by qPCR throughout the experiment (35 days). Both strains reached a putative VBNC state and lost adhesive properties but exhibited a different behavior in the expression of aerA. This could be due to the different origin of the two strains; the former adapted to a habitat rich of nutrient and the latter already used to survive in a more hostile environment. Moreover, our results indicate that the quantitative determination of aerA mRNA can be a useful indicator of virulence expression under stress conditions. PMID:25533849

  10. Salmonella Modulates Metabolism during Growth under Conditions that Induce Expression of Virulence Genes

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Young-Mo; Schmidt, Brian J.; Kidwai, Afshan S.; Jones, Marcus B.; Deatherage Kaiser, Brooke L.; Brewer, Heather M.; Mitchell, Hugh D.; Palsson, Bernhard O.; McDermott, Jason E.; Heffron, Fred; Smith, Richard D.; Peterson, Scott N.; Ansong, Charles; Hyduke, Daniel R.; Metz, Thomas O.; Adkins, Joshua N.

    2013-01-01

    Salmonella enterica serovar Typhimurium (S. Typhimurium) is a facultative pathogen that uses complex mechanisms to invade and proliferate within mammalian host cells. To investigate possible contributions of metabolic processes to virulence in S. Typhimurium grown under conditions known to induce expression of virulence genes, we used a metabolomics-driven systems biology approach coupled with genome scale modeling. First, we identified distinct metabolite profiles associated with bacteria grown in either rich or virulence-inducing media and report the most comprehensive coverage of the S. Typhimurium metabolome to date. Second, we applied an omics-informed genome scale modeling analysis of the functional consequences of adaptive alterations in S. Typhimurium metabolism during growth under our conditions. Modeling efforts highlighted a decreased cellular capability to both produce and utilize intracellular amino acids during stationary phase culture in virulence conditions, despite significant abundance increases for these molecules as observed by our metabolomics measurements. Furthermore, analyses of omics data in the context of the metabolic model indicated rewiring of the metabolic network to support pathways associated with virulence. For example, cellular concentrations of polyamines were perturbed, as well as the predicted capacity for secretion and uptake. PMID:23559334

  11. Expression of the Salmonella virulence plasmid gene spvB in cultured macrophages and nonphagocytic cells.

    PubMed

    Fierer, J; Eckmann, L; Fang, F; Pfeifer, C; Finlay, B B; Guiney, D

    1993-12-01

    Certain serotypes of salmonellae carry virulence plasmids that greatly enhance the pathogenicity of these bacteria in experimentally infected mice. This phenotype is largely attributable to the 8-kb spv regulon. However, spv genes are not expressed while bacteria grow in vitro. We now show that spvB, which is required for virulence, is expressed rapidly after Salmonella dublin is ingested by cultured J774 and murine peritoneal macrophages and that expression is not affected by the alkalinization of intracellular vesicles. The level of induction of spvB is reduced when macrophages are pretreated with gamma interferon. spvB is also expressed in human and canine epithelial cell lines and a human hepatoma cell line. In all cases, spvB expression is dependent on the spvR gene, just as it is in stationary-phase cultures in vitro. These data suggest that spv virulence genes are expressed by intracellular salmonellae in vivo in response to a signal that is common to the intracellular compartments of cells that are invaded by salmonellae. PMID:8225598

  12. Distinct Expression Levels of ALS, LIP, and SAP Genes in Candida tropicalis with Diverse Virulent Activities

    PubMed Central

    Yu, Shuanbao; Li, Wenge; Liu, Xiaoshu; Che, Jie; Wu, Yuan; Lu, Jinxing

    2016-01-01

    Candia tropicalis is an increasingly important human pathogen, causing nosocomial fungemia among patients with neutropenia or malignancy. However, limited research has been published concerning its pathogenicity. Based on the phenotypes of C. tropicalis in our previous study, we selected nine representative strains with different activities of virulence factors (adhesion, biofilm formation, secreted aspartic proteinases, and hemolysins), and one reference strain, ATCC750. The present study aimed to investigate the filamentation ability, the expression of virulence genes (ALST1-3, LIP1, LIP4, and SAPT1-4) and the cell damage of C. tropicalis strains with diverse virulences. C. tropicalis exhibited strain-dependent filamentation ability, which was positively correlated with biofilm formation. Reverse transcriptase PCR analysis showed that the ALST3 and SAPT3 genes had the highest expression in their corresponding genes for most C. tropicalis. The expressions of virulence genes, except ALST3 on polystyrene, were upregulated compared with growth in the planktonic and on human urinary bladder epithelial cell line (TCC-SUP) surface. Clustering analysis of virulence genes showed that isolates had a high biofilm forming ability on polystyrene formed a group. Lactate dehydrogenase assays showed that the cell damage induced by C. tropicalis markedly increased with longer infection time (24 and 48 h). Strain FXCT01, isolated from blood, caused the most serious cell damage; while ZRCT52, which had no filamentation ability, caused the least cell damage. Correlation analysis demonstrated significant correlation existed between adhesion on epithelial cells or the expression of ALST2-3 and cell damage. Overall, our results supported the view that adhesion and filamentation may play significant roles in the cell damage caused by C. tropicalis. PMID:27524980

  13. Distinct Expression Levels of ALS, LIP, and SAP Genes in Candida tropicalis with Diverse Virulent Activities.

    PubMed

    Yu, Shuanbao; Li, Wenge; Liu, Xiaoshu; Che, Jie; Wu, Yuan; Lu, Jinxing

    2016-01-01

    Candia tropicalis is an increasingly important human pathogen, causing nosocomial fungemia among patients with neutropenia or malignancy. However, limited research has been published concerning its pathogenicity. Based on the phenotypes of C. tropicalis in our previous study, we selected nine representative strains with different activities of virulence factors (adhesion, biofilm formation, secreted aspartic proteinases, and hemolysins), and one reference strain, ATCC750. The present study aimed to investigate the filamentation ability, the expression of virulence genes (ALST1-3, LIP1, LIP4, and SAPT1-4) and the cell damage of C. tropicalis strains with diverse virulences. C. tropicalis exhibited strain-dependent filamentation ability, which was positively correlated with biofilm formation. Reverse transcriptase PCR analysis showed that the ALST3 and SAPT3 genes had the highest expression in their corresponding genes for most C. tropicalis. The expressions of virulence genes, except ALST3 on polystyrene, were upregulated compared with growth in the planktonic and on human urinary bladder epithelial cell line (TCC-SUP) surface. Clustering analysis of virulence genes showed that isolates had a high biofilm forming ability on polystyrene formed a group. Lactate dehydrogenase assays showed that the cell damage induced by C. tropicalis markedly increased with longer infection time (24 and 48 h). Strain FXCT01, isolated from blood, caused the most serious cell damage; while ZRCT52, which had no filamentation ability, caused the least cell damage. Correlation analysis demonstrated significant correlation existed between adhesion on epithelial cells or the expression of ALST2-3 and cell damage. Overall, our results supported the view that adhesion and filamentation may play significant roles in the cell damage caused by C. tropicalis. PMID:27524980

  14. Gene expression patterns and dynamics of the colonization of common bean (Phaseolus vulgaris L.) by highly virulent and weakly virulent strains of Fusarium oxysporum

    PubMed Central

    Niño-Sánchez, Jonathan; Tello, Vega; Casado-del Castillo, Virginia; Thon, Michael R.; Benito, Ernesto P.; Díaz-Mínguez, José María

    2015-01-01

    The dynamics of root and hypocotyl colonization, and the gene expression patterns of several fungal virulence factors and plant defense factors have been analyzed and compared in the interaction of two Fusarium oxysporum f. sp. phaseoli strains displaying clear differences in virulence, with a susceptible common bean cultivar. The growth of the two strains on the root surface and the colonization of the root was quantitatively similar although the highly virulent (HV) strain was more efficient reaching the central root cylinder. The main differences between both strains were found in the temporal and spatial dynamics of crown root and hypocotyl colonization. The increase of fungal biomass in the crown root was considerably larger for the HV strain, which, after an initial stage of global colonization of both the vascular cylinder and the parenchymal cells, restricted its growth to the newly differentiated xylem vessels. The weakly virulent (WV) strain was a much slower and less efficient colonizer of the xylem vessels, showing also growth in the intercellular spaces of the parenchyma. Most of the virulence genes analyzed showed similar expression patterns in both strains, except SIX1, SIX6 and the gene encoding the transcription factor FTF1, which were highly upregulated in root crown and hypocotyl. The response induced in the infected plant showed interesting differences for both strains. The WV strain induced an early and strong transcription of the PR1 gene, involved in SAR response, while the HV strain preferentially induced the early expression of the ethylene responsive factor ERF2. PMID:25883592

  15. Expression of Escherichia coli virulence usher protein attenuates wild-type Salmonella.

    PubMed

    Yang, Xinghong; Suo, Zhiyong; Thornburg, Theresa; Holderness, Kathryn; Cao, Ling; Lim, Timothy; Walters, Nancy; Kellerman, Laura; Loetterle, Linda; Avci, Recep; Pascual, David W

    2012-01-01

    Generation of a live attenuated vaccine for bacterial pathogens often requires prior knowledge of the pathogen's virulence factors. We hypothesized an alternative approach of heterologous gene expression would make a wild-type (wt) pathogen more susceptible to host cell killing, thus, resulting in immunization. As proof of concept, the heterologous expression of enterotoxigenic E. coli (ETEC) colonization factor antigen I (CFA/I) was tested to attenuate Salmonella. The overexpression of CFA/I resulted in significant attenuation of wt Salmonella. In-depth studies revealed the attenuation depended on the co-expression of chaperone (CfaA) and usher (CfaC) proteins. Remarkably, the CfaAC-attenuated Salmonella conferred protection against wt Salmonella challenge. Mechanistic study indicated CfaAC made Salmonella outer membranes permeable, causing Salmonella to be vulnerable to host destruction. Thus, enhancing bacterial permeability via CfaAC represents an alternative method to attenuate pathogens despite the presence of unknown virulence factors. PMID:22286706

  16. Patterns of virulence gene expression differ between biofilm and tissue communities of Streptococcus pyogenes.

    PubMed

    Cho, Kyu Hong; Caparon, Michael G

    2005-09-01

    The ability of Streptococcus pyogenes to form biofilm-like bacterial communities during infection of soft tissue has suggested that the capacity to produce biofilm may be important for pathogenesis. To examine this relationship, a panel of mutants was evaluated for their ability to form biofilm on abiotic surfaces in several assays. Several established virulence factors were crucial for biofilm formation, including the M protein, required for initial cell-surface interactions, and the hyaluronic acid capsule, required for subsequent maturation into a three-dimensional structure. Mutants lacking the transcription regulators Mga and CovR (CsrR) also failed to form biofilm. Comparison of transcriptional profiles revealed differential regulation of approximately 25% of the genome upon adaptation to biofilm. During infection of zebrafish, several virulence factors (notably cysteine protease and streptokinase) were regulated in a biofilm-like manner. However, the overall profile of virulence factor expression indicated that tissue communities have a pattern of gene expression different from biofilm. Taken together, these data show that while biofilm and tissue communities have many characteristics in common, that biofilm reproduces only a subset of the myriad cues used by tissue communities for regulation of virulence. PMID:16135223

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-04-15

    The opportunistic pathogen Pseudomonas aeruginosa utilizes multiple quorum sensing (QS) pathways to coordinate an arsenal of virulence factors. We previously identified several cysteine-based compounds inspired by natural products from the plant Petiveria alliacea which are capable of antagonizing multiple QS circuits as well as reducing P. aeruginosa biofilm formation. To understand the global effects of such compounds on virulence factor production and elucidate their mechanism of action, RNA-seq transcriptomic analysis was performed on P. aeruginosa PAO1 exposed to S-phenyl-l-cysteine sulfoxide, the most potent inhibitor from the prior study. Exposure to this inhibitor down-regulated expression of several QS-regulated virulence operons (e.g., phenazine biosynthesis, type VI secretion systems). Interestingly, many genes that were differentially regulated pertain to the related metabolic pathways that yield precursors of pyochelin, tricarboxylic acid cycle intermediates, phenazines, and Pseudomonas quinolone signal (PQS). Activation of the MexT-regulon was also indicated, including the multidrug efflux pump encoded by mexEF-oprN, which has previously been shown to inhibit QS and pathogenicity. Deeper investigation of the metabolites involved in these systems revealed that S-phenyl-l-cysteine sulfoxide has structural similarity to kynurenine, a precursor of anthranilate, which is critical for P. aeruginosa virulence. By supplementing exogenous anthranilate, the QS-inhibitory effect was reversed. Finally, it was shown that S-phenyl-l-cysteine sulfoxide competitively inhibits P. aeruginosa kynureninase (KynU) activity in vitro and reduces PQS production in vivo. The kynurenine pathway has been implicated in P. aeruginosa QS and virulence factor expression; however, this is the first study to show that targeted inhibition of KynU affects P. aeruginosa gene expression and QS, suggesting a potential antivirulence strategy. PMID:26785289

  18. Host stress hormone norepinephrine stimulates pneumococcal growth, biofilm formation and virulence gene expression

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Host signals are being shown to have a major impact on the bacterial phenotype. One of them is the endogenously produced catecholamine stress hormones, which are also used therapeutically as inotropes. Recent work form our laboratories have found that stress hormones can markedly increase bacterial growth and virulence. This report reveals that Streptococcus pneumoniae, a commensal that can also be a major cause of community acquired and nosocomial pneumonia, is highly inotrope responsive. Therapeutic levels of the stress hormone norepinephrine increased pneumococcal growth via a mechanism involving provision of iron from serum-transferrin and inotrope uptake, as well as enhancing expression of key genes in central metabolism and virulence. Collectively, our data suggests that Streptococcus pneumoniae recognises host stress as an environmental cue to initiate growth and pathogenic processes. Results Effects of a clinically attainable concentration of norepinephrine on S. pneumoniae pathogenicity were explored using in vitro growth and virulence assays, and RT-PCR gene expression profiling of genes involved in metabolism and virulence. We found that norepinephrine was a potent stimulator of growth, via a mechanism involving norepinephrine-delivery of transferrin-iron and internalisation of the inotrope. Stress hormone exposure also markedly increased biofilm formation. Importantly, gene profiling showed that norepinephrine significantly enhanced expression of genes involved in central metabolism and host colonisation. Analysis of the response of the pneumococcal pspA and pspC mutants to the stress hormone showed them to have a central involvement in the catecholamine response mechanism. Conclusions Collectively, our evidence suggests that the pneumococcus has mechanisms to recognise and process host stress hormones to augment its virulence properties. The ability to respond to host stress signals may be important for the pneumococcal transition from

  19. Cysteine Peptidase B Regulates Leishmania mexicana Virulence through the Modulation of GP63 Expression

    PubMed Central

    Casgrain, Pierre-André; Martel, Caroline; McMaster, W. Robert; Mottram, Jeremy C.; Olivier, Martin; Descoteaux, Albert

    2016-01-01

    Cysteine peptidases play a central role in the biology of Leishmania. In this work, we sought to further elucidate the mechanism(s) by which the cysteine peptidase CPB contributes to L. mexicana virulence and whether CPB participates in the formation of large communal parasitophorous vacuoles induced by these parasites. We initially examined the impact of L. mexicana infection on the trafficking of VAMP3 and VAMP8, two endocytic SNARE proteins associated with phagolysosome biogenesis and function. Using a CPB-deficient mutant, we found that both VAMP3 and VAMP8 were down-modulated in a CPB-dependent manner. We also discovered that expression of the virulence-associated GPI-anchored metalloprotease GP63 was inhibited in the absence of CPB. Expression of GP63 in the CPB-deficient mutant was sufficient to down-modulate VAMP3 and VAMP8. Similarly, episomal expression of GP63 enabled the CPB-deficient mutant to establish infection in macrophages, induce the formation of large communal parasitophorous vacuoles, and cause lesions in mice. These findings implicate CPB in the regulation of GP63 expression and provide evidence that both GP63 and CPB are key virulence factors in L. mexicana. PMID:27191844

  20. Bistable Expression of CsgD in Salmonella enterica Serovar Typhimurium Connects Virulence to Persistence

    PubMed Central

    MacKenzie, Keith D.; Wang, Yejun; Shivak, Dylan J.; Wong, Cynthia S.; Hoffman, Leia J. L.; Lam, Shirley; Kröger, Carsten; Cameron, Andrew D. S.; Townsend, Hugh G. G.; Köster, Wolfgang

    2015-01-01

    Pathogenic bacteria often need to survive in the host and the environment, and it is not well understood how cells transition between these equally challenging situations. For the human and animal pathogen Salmonella enterica serovar Typhimurium, biofilm formation is correlated with persistence outside a host, but the connection to virulence is unknown. In this study, we analyzed multicellular-aggregate and planktonic-cell subpopulations that coexist when S. Typhimurium is grown under biofilm-inducing conditions. These cell types arise due to bistable expression of CsgD, the central biofilm regulator. Despite being exposed to the same stresses, the two cell subpopulations had 1,856 genes that were differentially expressed, as determined by transcriptome sequencing (RNA-seq). Aggregated cells displayed the characteristic gene expression of biofilms, whereas planktonic cells had enhanced expression of numerous virulence genes. Increased type three secretion synthesis in planktonic cells correlated with enhanced invasion of a human intestinal cell line and significantly increased virulence in mice compared to the aggregates. However, when the same groups of cells were exposed to desiccation, the aggregates survived better, and the competitive advantage of planktonic cells was lost. We hypothesize that CsgD-based differentiation is a form of bet hedging, with single cells primed for host cell invasion and aggregated cells adapted for persistence in the environment. This allows S. Typhimurium to spread the risks of transmission and ensures a smooth transition between the host and the environment. PMID:25824832

  1. Construction of a Multiplex Promoter Reporter Platform to Monitor Staphylococcus aureus Virulence Gene Expression and the Identification of Usnic Acid as a Potent Suppressor of psm Gene Expression

    PubMed Central

    Gao, Peng; Wang, Yanli; Villanueva, Iván; Ho, Pak Leung; Davies, Julian; Kao, Richard Yi Tsun

    2016-01-01

    As antibiotic resistance becomes phenomenal, alternative therapeutic strategies for bacterial infections such as anti-virulence treatments have been advocated. We have constructed a total of 20 gfp-luxABCDE dual-reporter plasmids with selected promoters from S. aureus virulence-associated genes. The plasmids were introduced into various S. aureus strains to establish a gfp-lux based multiplex promoter reporter platform for monitoring S. aureus virulence gene expressions in real time to identify factors or compounds that may perturb virulence of S. aureus. The gene expression profiles monitored by luminescence correlated well with qRT-PCR results and extrinsic factors including carbon dioxide and some antibiotics were shown to suppress or induce the expression of virulence factors in this platform. Using this platform, sub-inhibitory ampicillin was shown to be a potent inducer for the expression of many virulence factors in S. aureus. Bacterial adherence and invasion assays using mammalian cells were employed to measure S. aureus virulence induced by ampicillin. The platform was used for screening of natural extracts that perturb the virulence of S. aureus and usnic acid was identified to be a potent repressor for the expression of psm. PMID:27625639

  2. Construction of a Multiplex Promoter Reporter Platform to Monitor Staphylococcus aureus Virulence Gene Expression and the Identification of Usnic Acid as a Potent Suppressor of psm Gene Expression.

    PubMed

    Gao, Peng; Wang, Yanli; Villanueva, Iván; Ho, Pak Leung; Davies, Julian; Kao, Richard Yi Tsun

    2016-01-01

    As antibiotic resistance becomes phenomenal, alternative therapeutic strategies for bacterial infections such as anti-virulence treatments have been advocated. We have constructed a total of 20 gfp-luxABCDE dual-reporter plasmids with selected promoters from S. aureus virulence-associated genes. The plasmids were introduced into various S. aureus strains to establish a gfp-lux based multiplex promoter reporter platform for monitoring S. aureus virulence gene expressions in real time to identify factors or compounds that may perturb virulence of S. aureus. The gene expression profiles monitored by luminescence correlated well with qRT-PCR results and extrinsic factors including carbon dioxide and some antibiotics were shown to suppress or induce the expression of virulence factors in this platform. Using this platform, sub-inhibitory ampicillin was shown to be a potent inducer for the expression of many virulence factors in S. aureus. Bacterial adherence and invasion assays using mammalian cells were employed to measure S. aureus virulence induced by ampicillin. The platform was used for screening of natural extracts that perturb the virulence of S. aureus and usnic acid was identified to be a potent repressor for the expression of psm. PMID:27625639

  3. PTS phosphorylation of Mga modulates regulon expression and virulence in the group A streptococcus.

    PubMed

    Hondorp, Elise R; Hou, Sherry C; Hause, Lara L; Gera, Kanika; Lee, Ching-En; McIver, Kevin S

    2013-06-01

    The ability of a bacterial pathogen to monitor available carbon sources in host tissues provides a clear fitness advantage. In the group A streptococcus (GAS), the virulence regulator Mga contains homology to phosphotransferase system (PTS) regulatory domains (PRDs) found in sugar operon regulators. Here we show that Mga was phosphorylated in vitro by the PTS components EI/HPr at conserved PRD histidines. A ΔptsI (EI-deficient) GAS mutant exhibited decreased Mga activity. However, PTS-mediated phosphorylation inhibited Mga-dependent transcription of emm in vitro. Using alanine (unphosphorylated) and aspartate (phosphomimetic) mutations of PRD histidines, we establish that a doubly phosphorylated PRD1 phosphomimetic (D/DMga4) is completely inactive in vivo, shutting down expression of the Mga regulon. Although D/DMga4 is still able to bind DNA in vitro, homo-multimerization of Mga is disrupted and the protein is unable to activate transcription. PTS-mediated regulation of Mga activity appears to be important for pathogenesis, as bacteria expressing either non-phosphorylated (A/A) or phosphomimetic (D/D) PRD1 Mga mutants were attenuated in a model of GAS invasive skin disease. Thus, PTS-mediated phosphorylation of Mga may allow the bacteria to modulate virulence gene expression in response to carbohydrate status. Furthermore, PRD-containing virulence regulators (PCVRs) appear to be widespread in Gram-positive pathogens. PMID:23651410

  4. Inhibition of swarming and virulence factor expression in Proteus mirabilis by resveratrol.

    PubMed

    Wang, Won-Bo; Lai, Hsin-Chih; Hsueh, Po-Ren; Chiou, Robin Y-Y; Lin, Shwu-Bin; Liaw, Shwu-Jen

    2006-10-01

    Resveratrol (3,5,4-trihydroxy-trans-stilbene) is a phytoalexin compound with anti-inflammatory and antioxidant activities. The effect of resveratrol on swarming and virulence factor expression of Proteus mirabilis, an important pathogen infecting the urinary tract, was determined on swarming agar plates with and without the compound. Bacteria harvested at different times were assayed for cell length and the production of flagella, haemolysin and urease. Resveratrol inhibited P. mirabilis swarming and virulence factor expression in a dose-dependent manner. Resveratrol significantly inhibited swarming at 15 microg ml(-1), and completely inhibited swarming at 60 microg ml(-1). Inhibition of swarming and virulence factor expression was mediated through RsbA, a His-containing phosphotransmitter of the bacterial two-component signalling system possibly involved in quorum sensing. Complementation of an rsbA-defective mutant with the rsbA gene restored its responsiveness to resveratrol. The compound also inhibited the ability of P. mirabilis to invade human urothelial cells. These findings suggest that resveratrol has potential to be developed as an antimicrobial agent against P. mirabilis infection. PMID:17005777

  5. Inhibition of virulence factor expression and swarming differentiation in Proteus mirabilis by p-nitrophenylglycerol.

    PubMed

    Liaw, S J; Lai, H C; Ho, S W; Luh, K T; Wang, W B

    2000-08-01

    Proteus mirabilis is a common cause of upper urinary tract infections that can involve invasion of host urothelial cells. The ability to invade urothelial cells is coupled closely to swarming, a form of multicellular behaviour in which vegetative bacteria differentiate into hyperflagellate, filamentous swarming cells capable of co-ordinated and rapid population migration. Co-ordinate expression of virulence factors including urease, protease, haemolysin and flagellin during swarm-cell differentiation in P. mirabilis has been reported. To investigate the effects of p-nitrophenylglycerol (PNPG), a potent anti-swarming agent, on the various swarming-associated traits of P. mirabilis and to elucidate the relationships among them, P. mirabilis growth rate, swarming/swimming activity, cell invasion ability and the ability to express various virulence factors were monitored in the presence or absence of PNPG. It was found that PNPG could inhibit the growth rate, swarming differentiation and swarming/swimming activities of P. mirabilis. The expression of virulence factors such as protease, urease, haemolysin and flagellin in P. mirabilis was also inhibited by PNPG. The ability of P. mirabilis to invade human urothelial cells was reduced dramatically in the presence of PNPG. These results suggest that PNPG has the potential to be developed as an agent active against the effects of P. mirabilis infection. PMID:10933258

  6. Use of a Continuous-Flow Anaerobic Culture To Characterize Enteric Virulence Gene Expression

    PubMed Central

    Ruiz-Perez, Fernando; Sheikh, Jalaluddin; Davis, Suzanne; Boedeker, Edgar C.; Nataro, James P.

    2004-01-01

    We developed an in vitro culture method to characterize the expression of bacterial genes under conditions mimicking the colonic environment. Our culture system (the intestinal simulator) comprised a continuous-flow anaerobic culture which was inoculated with fecal samples from healthy volunteers. As a test organism, we employed enteroaggregative Escherichia coli (EAEC), an emerging diarrheal pathogen that is thought to cause infection in both the small and large intestines. After the simulator culture achieved equilibrium conditions, we inoculated the system with prototype EAEC strain 042 and assessed the expression of three EAEC virulence-related genes. We focused particularly on expression of aggR, which encodes a global transcriptional regulator of EAEC virulence factors, and two AggR-regulated genes. By using real-time quantitative reverse transcription-PCR, we showed that aggR expression in the simulator is increased 3- to 10-fold when 042 is grown under low-pH (5.5 to 6.0) conditions, compared with results with neutral pH (7.0). Interestingly, however, this effect was seen only when the strain was grown in the presence of commensal bacteria. We also found that expression of aggR is 10- to 20-fold higher at low NaCl concentrations, and this effect was also observed only in the presence of commensal bacteria. Using coculture and conditioned-media experiments, we identified specific strains of Enterococcus and Clostridium that upregulated aggR expression; in contrast, strains of Lactobacillus and Veillonella downregulated aggR expression. Our data provide new insights into regulation of virulence genes in EAEC and suggest the utility of intestinal simulation cultures in characterizing enteric gene regulation. PMID:15213120

  7. Human Serum Promotes Candida albicans Biofilm Growth and Virulence Gene Expression on Silicone Biomaterial

    PubMed Central

    Samaranayake, Yuthika Hemamala; Cheung, Becky P. K.; Yau, Joyce Y. Y.; Yeung, Shadow K. W.; Samaranayake, Lakshman P.

    2013-01-01

    Objectives Systemic candidal infections are a common problem in hospitalized patients due to central venous catheters fabricated using silicone biomaterial (SB). We therefore evaluated the effect of human serum on C. albicans biofilm morphology, growth, and the expression of virulence-related genes on SB in vitro. Methods We cultivated C. albicans SC5314 (wild-type strain, WT) and its derivative HLC54 (hyphal mutant, HM) for 48 h in various conditions, including the presence or absence of SB discs, and human serum. The growth of planktonic and biofilm cells of both strains was monitored at three time points by a tetrazolium salt reduction assay and by scanning electron microscopy. We also analyzed by RT-PCR its expression of the virulence-related genes ALS3, HWP1, EAP1, ECE1, SAP1 - SAP10, PLB1, PLB2, PLC and PLD. Results At each time point, planktonic cells of WT strain cultured in yeast nitrogen base displayed a much higher expression of EAP1 and HWP1, and a moderately higher ALS3 expression, than HM cells. In planktonic cells, expression of the ten SAP genes was higher in the WT strain initially, but were highly expressed in the HM strain by 48 h. Biofilm growth of both strains on SB was promoted in the presence of human serum than in its absence. Significant upregulation of ALS3, HWP1, EAP1, ECE1, SAP1, SAP4, SAP6 - SAP10, PLB1, PLB2 and PLC was observed for WT biofilms grown on serum-treated SB discs for at least one time point, compared with biofilms on serum-free SB discs. Conclusions Human serum stimulates C. albicans biofilm growth on SB discs and upregulates the expression of virulence genes, particularly adhesion genes ALS3 and HWP1, and hydrolase-encoding genes SAP, PLB1 and PLB2. This response is likely to promote the colonization of this versatile pathogen within the human host. PMID:23704884

  8. Identification of Differentially Expressed Genes in Virulent and Nonvirulent Entamoeba Species: Potential Implications for Amebic Pathogenesis †

    PubMed Central

    MacFarlane, Ryan C.; Singh, Upinder

    2006-01-01

    Entamoeba histolytica is a protozoan parasite that causes colitis and liver abscesses. Several Entamoeba species and strains with differing levels of virulence have been identified. E. histolytica HM-1:IMSS is a virulent strain, E. histolytica Rahman is a nonvirulent strain, and Entamoeba dispar is a nonvirulent species. We used an E. histolytica DNA microarray consisting of 2,110 genes to assess the transcriptional differences between these species/strains with the goal of identifying genes whose expression correlated with a virulence phenotype. We found 415 genes expressed at lower levels in E. dispar and 32 genes with lower expression in E. histolytica Rahman than in E. histolytica HM-1:IMSS. Overall, 29 genes had decreased expression in both the nonvirulent species/strains than the virulent E. histolytica HM-1:IMSS. Interestingly, a number of genes with potential roles in stress response and virulence had decreased expression in either one or both nonvirulent Entamoeba species/strains. These included genes encoding Fe hydrogenase (9.m00419), peroxiredoxin (176.m00112), type A flavoprotein (6.m00467), lysozyme (6.m00454), sphingomyelinase C (29.m00231), and a hypothetical protein with homology to both a Plasmodium sporozoite threonine-asparagine-rich protein (STARP) and a streptococcal hemagglutinin (238.m00054). The function of these genes in Entamoeba and their specific roles in parasite virulence need to be determined. We also found that a number of the non-long-terminal-repeat retrotransposons (EhLINEs and EhSINEs), which have been shown to modulate gene expression and genomic evolution, had lower expression in the nonvirulent species/strains than in E. histolytica HM-1:IMSS. Our results, identifying expression profiles and patterns indicative of a virulence phenotype, may be useful in characterizing the transcriptional framework of virulence. PMID:16368989

  9. RivR is a negative regulator of virulence factor expression in group A Streptococcus.

    PubMed

    Treviño, Jeanette; Liu, Zhuyun; Cao, Tram N; Ramirez-Peña, Esmeralda; Sumby, Paul

    2013-01-01

    The bacterial pathogen group A Streptococcus (GAS) causes human diseases ranging from self-limiting pharyngitis (also known as strep throat) to severely invasive necrotizing fasciitis (also known as the flesh-eating syndrome). To control virulence factor expression, GAS utilizes both protein- and RNA-based mechanisms of regulation. Here we report that the transcription factor RivR (RofA-like protein IV) negatively regulates the abundance of mRNAs encoding the hyaluronic acid capsule biosynthesis proteins (hasABC; ∼7-fold) and the protein G-related α(2)-macroglobulin-binding protein (grab; ∼29-fold). Our data differ significantly from those of a previous study of the RivR regulon. Given that grab and hasABC are also negatively regulated by the two-component system CovR/S (control of virulence), we tested whether RivR functions through CovR/S. A comparison of riv and cov single and double mutant strains showed that RivR requires CovR activity for grab and hasABC regulation. Analysis of the upstream region of rivR identified a novel promoter the deletion of which reduced rivR mRNA abundance by 70%. A rivR mutant strain had a reduced ability to adhere to human keratinocytes relative to that of the parental and complemented strains, a phenotype that was abolished upon GAS pretreatment with hyaluronidase, highlighting the importance of capsule regulation by RivR during colonization. The rivR mutant strain was also attenuated for virulence in a murine model of bacteremia infection. Thus, we identify RivR as an important regulator of GAS virulence and provide new insight into the regulatory networks controlling virulence factor production in this pathogen. PMID:23147037

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

    PubMed

    Shelburne, Samuel A; Olsen, Randall J; Suber, Bryce; Sahasrabhojane, Pranoti; Sumby, Paul; Brennan, Richard G; Musser, James M

    2010-03-01

    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. PMID:20333240

  11. RivR Is a Negative Regulator of Virulence Factor Expression in Group A Streptococcus

    PubMed Central

    Treviño, Jeanette; Liu, Zhuyun; Cao, Tram N.; Ramirez-Peña, Esmeralda

    2013-01-01

    The bacterial pathogen group A Streptococcus (GAS) causes human diseases ranging from self-limiting pharyngitis (also known as strep throat) to severely invasive necrotizing fasciitis (also known as the flesh-eating syndrome). To control virulence factor expression, GAS utilizes both protein- and RNA-based mechanisms of regulation. Here we report that the transcription factor RivR (RofA-like protein IV) negatively regulates the abundance of mRNAs encoding the hyaluronic acid capsule biosynthesis proteins (hasABC; ∼7-fold) and the protein G-related α2-macroglobulin-binding protein (grab; ∼29-fold). Our data differ significantly from those of a previous study of the RivR regulon. Given that grab and hasABC are also negatively regulated by the two-component system CovR/S (control of virulence), we tested whether RivR functions through CovR/S. A comparison of riv and cov single and double mutant strains showed that RivR requires CovR activity for grab and hasABC regulation. Analysis of the upstream region of rivR identified a novel promoter the deletion of which reduced rivR mRNA abundance by 70%. A rivR mutant strain had a reduced ability to adhere to human keratinocytes relative to that of the parental and complemented strains, a phenotype that was abolished upon GAS pretreatment with hyaluronidase, highlighting the importance of capsule regulation by RivR during colonization. The rivR mutant strain was also attenuated for virulence in a murine model of bacteremia infection. Thus, we identify RivR as an important regulator of GAS virulence and provide new insight into the regulatory networks controlling virulence factor production in this pathogen. PMID:23147037

  12. Differential expression of the virulence-associated protein p57 and characterization of its duplicated gene rosa in virulent and attenuated strains of Renibacterium salmoninarum

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    O'Farrell, C. L.; Strom, M.S.

    1999-01-01

    Virulence mechanisms utilized by the salmonid fish pathogen Renibacterium salmoninarum are poorly understood. One potential virulence factor is p57 (also designated MSA for major soluble antigen), an abundant 57 kDa soluble protein that is predominately localized on the bacterial cell surface with significant levels released into the extracellular milieu. Previous studies of an attenuated strain, MT 239, indicated that it differs from virulent strains in the amount of surface-associated p57. In this report, we show overall expression of p57 in R. salmoninarum MT 239 is considerably reduced as compared to a virulent strain, ATCC 33209. The amount of cell-associated p57 is decreased while the level of p57 in the culture supernatant is nearly equivalent between the strains. To determine if lowered amount of cell-associated p57 was due to a sequence defect in p57, a genetic comparison was performed. Two copies of the gene encoding p57 (msa1 and msa2) were found in 33209 and MT 239, as well as in several other virulent isolates. Both copies from 33209 and MT 239 were cloned and sequenced and found to be identical to each other, and identical between the 2 strains. A comparison of msa1 and msa2 within each strain showed that their sequences diverge 40 base pairs 5, to the open reading frame, while sequences 3' to the open reading frame are essentially identical for at least 225 base pairs. Northern blot analysis showed no difference in steady state levels of rosa mRNA between the 2 strains. These data suggest that while cell-surface localization of p57 may be important for R. salmoninarum virulence, the differences in localization, and total p57 expression between 33209 anti MT 239 are not due to differences in rosa sequence or differences in steady state transcript levels.

  13. Differential expression of the virulence-associated protein p57 and characterization of its duplicated gene msa in virulent and attenuated strains of Renibacterium salmoninarum.

    PubMed

    O'Farrell, C L; Strom, M S

    1999-11-01

    Virulence mechanisms utilized by the salmonid fish pathogen Renibacterium salmoninarum are poorly understood. One potential virulence factor is p57 (also designated MSA for major soluble antigen), an abundant 57 kDa soluble protein that is predominately localized on the bacterial cell surface with significant levels released into the extracellular milieu. Previous studies of an attenuated strain, MT 239, indicated that it differs from virulent strains in the amount of surface-associated p57. In this report, we show overall expression of p57 in R. salmoninarum MT 239 is considerably reduced as compared to a virulent strain, ATCC 33209. The amount of cell-associated p57 is decreased while the level of p57 in the culture supernatant is nearly equivalent between the strains. To determine if the lowered amount of cell-associated p57 was due to a sequence defect in p57, a genetic comparison was performed. Two copies of the gene encoding p57 (msa1 and msa2) were found in 33209 and MT 239, as well as in several other virulent isolates. Both copies from 33209 and MT 239 were cloned and sequenced and found to be identical to each other, and identical between the 2 strains. A comparison of msa1 and msa2 within each strain showed that their sequences diverge 40 base pairs 5' to the open reading frame, while sequences 3' to the open reading frame are essentially identical for at least 225 base pairs. Northern blot analysis showed no difference in steady state levels of msa mRNA between the 2 strains. These data suggest that while cell-surface localization of p57 may be important for R. salmoninarum virulence, the differences in localization and total p57 expression between 33209 and MT 239 are not due to differences in msa sequence or differences in steady state transcript levels. PMID:10598282

  14. Spatial Segregation of Virulence Gene Expression during Acute Enteric Infection with Salmonella enterica serovar Typhimurium

    PubMed Central

    Laughlin, Richard C.; Knodler, Leigh A.; Barhoumi, Roula; Payne, H. Ross; Wu, Jing; Gomez, Gabriel; Pugh, Roberta; Lawhon, Sara D.; Bäumler, Andreas J.; Steele-Mortimer, Olivia; Adams, L. Garry

    2014-01-01

    ABSTRACT To establish a replicative niche during its infectious cycle between the intestinal lumen and tissue, the enteric pathogen Salmonella enterica serovar Typhimurium requires numerous virulence genes, including genes for two type III secretion systems (T3SS) and their cognate effectors. To better understand the host-pathogen relationship, including early infection dynamics and induction kinetics of the bacterial virulence program in the context of a natural host, we monitored the subcellular localization and temporal expression of T3SS-1 and T3SS-2 using fluorescent single-cell reporters in a bovine, ligated ileal loop model of infection. We observed that the majority of bacteria at 2 h postinfection are flagellated, express T3SS-1 but not T3SS-2, and are associated with the epithelium or with extruding enterocytes. In epithelial cells, S. Typhimurium cells were surrounded by intact vacuolar membranes or present within membrane-compromised vacuoles that typically contained numerous vesicular structures. By 8 h postinfection, T3SS-2-expressing bacteria were detected in the lamina propria and in the underlying mucosa, while T3SS-1-expressing bacteria were in the lumen. Our work identifies for the first time the temporal and spatial regulation of T3SS-1 and -2 expression during an enteric infection in a natural host and provides further support for the concept of cytosolic S. Typhimurium in extruding epithelium as a mechanism for reseeding the lumen. PMID:24496791

  15. Mutually Exclusive Expression of Virulence Genes by Malaria Parasites Is Regulated Independently of Antigen Production

    PubMed Central

    Dzikowski, Ron; Frank, Matthias; Deitsch, Kirk

    2006-01-01

    The primary virulence determinant of Plasmodium falciparum malaria parasite–infected cells is a family of heterogeneous surface receptors collectively referred to as PfEMP1. These proteins are encoded by a large, polymorphic gene family called var. The family contains approximately 60 individual genes, which are subject to strict, mutually exclusive expression, with the single expressed var gene determining the antigenic, cytoadherent, and virulence phenotype of the infected cell. The mutually exclusive expression pattern of var genes is imperative for the parasite's ability to evade the host's immune response and is similar to the process of “allelic exclusion” described for mammalian Ig and odorant receptor genes. In mammalian systems, mutually exclusive expression is ensured by negative feedback inhibition mediated by production of a functional protein. To investigate how expression of the var gene family is regulated, we have created transgenic lines of parasites in which expression of individual var loci can be manipulated. Here we show that no such negative feedback system exists in P. falciparum and that this process is dependent solely on the transcriptional regulatory elements immediately adjacent to each gene. Transgenic parasites that are selected to express a var gene in which the PfEMP1 coding region has been replaced by a drug-selectable marker silence all other var genes in the genome, thus effectively knocking out all PfEMP1 expression and indicating that the modified gene is still recognized as a member of the var gene family. Mutually exclusive expression in P. falciparum is therefore regulated exclusively at the level of transcription, and a functional PfEMP1 protein is not necessary for viability or for proper gene regulation in cultured parasites. PMID:16518466

  16. Role of luxS in Bacillus anthracis growth and virulence factor expression

    PubMed Central

    Peterson, Scott N; Benn, Rosslyn; Braisted, John C; Jarrahi, Behnam; Shatzkes, Kenneth; Ren, Dacheng; Wood, Thomas K; Blaser, Martin J

    2010-01-01

    Quorum-sensing (QS), the regulation of bacterial gene expression in response to changes in cell density, involves pathways that synthesize signaling molecules (auto-inducers). The luxS/AI-2-mediated QS system has been identified in both Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria. Bacillus anthracis, the etiological agent of anthrax, possesses genes involved in luxS/AI-2-mediated QS, and deletion of luxS in B. anthracis Sterne strain 34F2 results in inhibition of AI-2 synthesis and a growth defect. In the present study, we created a ΔluxS B. anthracis strain complemented in trans by insertion of a cassette, including luxS and a gene encoding erythromycin resistance, into the truncated plcR regulator locus. The complemented ΔluxS strain has restored AI-2 synthesis and wild-type growth. A B. anthracis microarray study revealed consistent differential gene expression between the wild-type and ΔluxS strain, including downregulation of the B. anthracis S-layer protein gene EA1 and pXO1 virulence genes. These data indicate that B. anthracis may use luxS/AI-2-mediated QS to regulate growth, density-dependent gene expression and virulence factor expression. PMID:21178420

  17. Growth of Yersinia pseudotuberculosis in human plasma: impacts on virulence and metabolic gene expression

    PubMed Central

    Rosso, Marie-Laure; Chauvaux, Sylvie; Dessein, Rodrigue; Laurans, Caroline; Frangeul, Lionel; Lacroix, Céline; Schiavo, Angèle; Dillies, Marie-Agnès; Foulon, Jeannine; Coppée, Jean-Yves; Médigue, Claudine; Carniel, Elisabeth; Simonet, Michel; Marceau, Michaël

    2008-01-01

    Background In man, infection by the Gram-negative enteropathogen Yersinia pseudotuberculosis is usually limited to the terminal ileum. However, in immunocompromised patients, the microorganism may disseminate from the digestive tract and thus cause a systemic infection with septicemia. Results To gain insight into the metabolic pathways and virulence factors expressed by the bacterium at the blood stage of pseudotuberculosis, we compared the overall gene transcription patterns (the transcriptome) of bacterial cells cultured in either human plasma or Luria-Bertani medium. The most marked plasma-triggered metabolic consequence in Y. pseudotuberculosis was the switch to high glucose consumption, which is reminiscent of the acetogenic pathway (known as "glucose overflow") in Escherichia coli. However, upregulation of the glyoxylate shunt enzymes suggests that (in contrast to E. coli) acetate may be further metabolized in Y. pseudotuberculosis. Our data also indicate that the bloodstream environment can regulate major virulence genes (positively or negatively); the yadA adhesin gene and most of the transcriptional units of the pYV-encoded type III secretion apparatus were found to be upregulated, whereas transcription of the pH6 antigen locus was strongly repressed. Conclusion Our results suggest that plasma growth of Y. pseudotuberculosis is responsible for major transcriptional regulatory events and prompts key metabolic reorientations within the bacterium, which may in turn have an impact on virulence. PMID:19055764

  18. Salmonella Modulates Metabolism During Growth under Conditions that Induce Expression of Virulence Genes

    SciTech Connect

    Kim, Young-Mo; Schmidt, Brian; Kidwai, Afshan S.; Jones, Marcus B.; Deatherage, Brooke L.; Brewer, Heather M.; Mitchell, Hugh D.; Palsson, Bernhard O.; McDermott, Jason E.; Heffron, Fred; Smith, Richard D.; Peterson, Scott N.; Ansong, Charles; Hyduke, Daniel R.; Metz, Thomas O.; Adkins, Joshua N.

    2013-04-05

    Salmonella enterica serovar Typhimurium (S. Typhimurium) is a facultative pathogen that uses complex mechanisms to invade and proliferate within mammalian host cells. To investigate possible contributions of metabolic processes in S. Typhimurium grown under conditions known to induce expression of virulence genes, we used a metabolomics-driven systems biology approach coupled with genome scale modeling. First, we identified distinct metabolite profiles associated with bacteria grown in either rich or virulence-inducing media and report the most comprehensive coverage of the S. Typhimurium metabolome to date. Second, we applied an omics-informed genome scale modeling analysis of the functional consequences of adaptive alterations in S. Typhimurium metabolism during growth under our conditions. Excitingly, we observed possible sequestration of metabolites recently suggested to have immune modulating roles. Modeling efforts highlighted a decreased cellular capability to both produce and utilize intracellular amino acids during stationary phase culture in virulence conditions, despite significant abundance increases for these molecules as observed by our metabolomics measurements. Model-guided analysis suggested that alterations in metabolism prioritized other activities necessary for pathogenesis instead, such as lipopolysaccharide biosynthesis.

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

    PubMed Central

    García, Carlos A.; Alcaraz, Eliana S.; Franco, Mirta A.; Passerini de Rossi, Beatriz N.

    2015-01-01

    Stenotrophomonas maltophilia is an emerging nosocomial pathogen. In many bacteria iron availability regulates, through the Fur system, not only iron homeostasis but also virulence. The aim of this work was to assess the role of iron on S. maltophilia biofilm formation, EPS production, oxidative stress response, OMPs regulation, quorum sensing (QS), and virulence. Studies were done on K279a and its isogenic fur mutant F60 cultured in the presence or absence of dipyridyl. This is the first report of spontaneous fur mutants obtained in S. maltophilia. F60 produced higher amounts of biofilms than K279a and CLSM analysis demonstrated improved adherence and biofilm organization. Under iron restricted conditions, K279a produced biofilms with more biomass and enhanced thickness. In addition, F60 produced higher amounts of EPS than K279a but with a similar composition, as revealed by ATR-FTIR spectroscopy. With respect to the oxidative stress response, MnSOD was the only SOD isoenzyme detected in K279a. F60 presented higher SOD activity than the wt strain in planktonic and biofilm cultures, and iron deprivation increased K279a SOD activity. Under iron starvation, SDS-PAGE profile from K279a presented two iron-repressed proteins. Mass spectrometry analysis revealed homology with FepA and another putative TonB-dependent siderophore receptor of K279a. In silico analysis allowed the detection of potential Fur boxes in the respective coding genes. K279a encodes the QS diffusible signal factor (DSF). Under iron restriction K279a produced higher amounts of DSF than under iron rich condition. Finally, F60 was more virulent than K279a in the Galleria mellonella killing assay. These results put in evidence that iron levels regulate, likely through the Fur system, S. maltophilia biofilm formation, oxidative stress response, OMPs expression, DSF production and virulence. PMID:26388863

  20. A Genome-Wide Screen Reveals that the Vibrio cholerae Phosphoenolpyruvate Phosphotransferase System Modulates Virulence Gene Expression

    PubMed Central

    Millet, Yves A.; Chao, Michael C.; Sasabe, Jumpei; Davis, Brigid M.

    2015-01-01

    Diverse environmental stimuli and a complex network of regulatory factors are known to modulate expression of Vibrio cholerae's principal virulence factors. However, there is relatively little known about how metabolic factors impinge upon the pathogen's well-characterized cascade of transcription factors that induce expression of cholera toxin and the toxin-coregulated pilus (TCP). Here, we used a transposon insertion site (TIS) sequencing-based strategy to identify new factors required for expression of tcpA, which encodes the major subunit of TCP, the organism's chief intestinal colonization factor. Besides identifying most of the genes known to modulate tcpA expression, the screen yielded ptsI and ptsH, which encode the enzyme I (EI) and Hpr components of the V. cholerae phosphoenolpyruvate phosphotransferase system (PTS). In addition to reduced expression of TcpA, strains lacking EI, Hpr, or the associated EIIAGlc protein produced less cholera toxin (CT) and had a diminished capacity to colonize the infant mouse intestine. The PTS modulates virulence gene expression by regulating expression of tcpPH and aphAB, which themselves control expression of toxT, the central activator of virulence gene expression. One mechanism by which PTS promotes virulence gene expression appears to be by modulating the amounts of intracellular cyclic AMP (cAMP). Our findings reveal that the V. cholerae PTS is an additional modulator of the ToxT regulon and demonstrate the potency of loss-of-function TIS sequencing screens for defining regulatory networks. PMID:26056384

  1. Transcriptional regulation of bacterial virulence gene expression by molecular oxygen and nitric oxide

    PubMed Central

    Green, Jeffrey; Rolfe, Matthew D; Smith, Laura J

    2014-01-01

    Molecular oxygen (O2) and nitric oxide (NO) are diatomic gases that play major roles in infection. The host innate immune system generates reactive oxygen species and NO as bacteriocidal agents and both require O2 for their production. Furthermore, the ability to adapt to changes in O2 availability is crucial for many bacterial pathogens, as many niches within a host are hypoxic. Pathogenic bacteria have evolved transcriptional regulatory systems that perceive these gases and respond by reprogramming gene expression. Direct sensors possess iron-containing co-factors (iron–sulfur clusters, mononuclear iron, heme) or reactive cysteine thiols that react with O2 and/or NO. Indirect sensors perceive the physiological effects of O2 starvation. Thus, O2 and NO act as environmental cues that trigger the coordinated expression of virulence genes and metabolic adaptations necessary for survival within a host. Here, the mechanisms of signal perception by key O2- and NO-responsive bacterial transcription factors and the effects on virulence gene expression are reviewed, followed by consideration of these aspects of gene regulation in two major pathogens, Staphylococcus aureus and Mycobacterium tuberculosis. PMID:25603427

  2. Sub-lethal stress effects on virulence gene expression in Enterococcus faecalis.

    PubMed

    Lenz, Christian A; Hew Ferstl, Carrie M; Vogel, Rudi F

    2010-05-01

    Enterococci are ubiquitous lactic acid bacteria commonly associated with the human digestive tract as commensal organisms. Additionally, these organisms have a long history of use in foods improving flavor as well as providing protective mechanisms as either a probiotic or antimicrobial additive. However, Enterococcus faecalis accounts for up to 10% of all nosocomial infections of the bloodstream, wounds, urinary tract and heart. Knowledge about the regulation of virulence factors is limited and the involvement of environmental signals contributing to E. faecalis pathogenicity is poorly documented. In this study, two clinical E. faecalis isolates, TMW 2.63 and OG1RF, as well as one food isolate, TMW 2.629, were subjected to six sub-lethal food- and host-related stresses including 6.8% NaCl, 200 ppm nitrite, 51 degrees C, 80 MPa, pH 4.1 and 0.08% bile salts (cholic acid:chenodeoxycholic acid 1:1), respectively, reducing their growth rate to 10%. Relative gene expression of 15 stress and virulence-associated genes including dnaK, groEL, ctsR, clpPBCEX, gls24, efaAfs, ace, fsrB, gelE, sprE and cylB, was quantified by using real time PCR and Lightcycler((R)) technology (reference conditions: BHI broth, 37 degrees C, pH = 7.4). Apart from strain-dependent differences, sub-lethal environmental stress was capable of provoking significant alterations in the expression of virulence-associated genes in E. faecalis from clinical as well as food origins of isolation. These results help to avoid preconditioning enterococci in food production processes and to understand the complex mechanisms in E. faecalis' switch to pathogenicity. PMID:20227595

  3. Current European Labyrinthula zosterae are not virulent and modulate seagrass (Zostera marina) defense gene expression.

    PubMed

    Brakel, Janina; Werner, Franziska Julie; Tams, Verena; Reusch, Thorsten B H; Bockelmann, Anna-Christina

    2014-01-01

    Pro- and eukaryotic microbes associated with multi-cellular organisms are receiving increasing attention as a driving factor in ecosystems. Endophytes in plants can change host performance by altering nutrient uptake, secondary metabolite production or defense mechanisms. Recent studies detected widespread prevalence of Labyrinthula zosterae in European Zostera marina meadows, a protist that allegedly caused a massive amphi-Atlantic seagrass die-off event in the 1930's, while showing only limited virulence today. As a limiting factor for pathogenicity, we investigated genotype × genotype interactions of host and pathogen from different regions (10-100 km-scale) through reciprocal infection. Although the endophyte rapidly infected Z. marina, we found little evidence that Z. marina was negatively impacted by L. zosterae. Instead Z. marina showed enhanced leaf growth and kept endophyte abundance low. Moreover, we found almost no interaction of protist × eelgrass-origin on different parameters of L. zosterae virulence/Z. marina performance, and also no increase in mortality after experimental infection. In a target gene approach, we identified a significant down-regulation in the expression of 6/11 genes from the defense cascade of Z. marina after real-time quantitative PCR, revealing strong immune modulation of the host's defense by a potential parasite for the first time in a marine plant. Nevertheless, one gene involved in phenol synthesis was strongly up-regulated, indicating that Z. marina plants were probably able to control the level of infection. There was no change in expression in a general stress indicator gene (HSP70). Mean L. zosterae abundances decreased below 10% after 16 days of experimental runtime. We conclude that under non-stress conditions L. zosterae infection in the study region is not associated with substantial virulence. PMID:24691450

  4. Growth of Acinetobacter baumannii in Pellicle Enhanced the Expression of Potential Virulence Factors

    PubMed Central

    Alexandre, Stéphane; Coquet, Laurent; Vila, Jordi; Jouenne, Thierry; Dé, Emmanuelle

    2011-01-01

    Background Interestingly, Acinetobacter baumannii presents an enhanced capacity to form biofilms (also named pellicles) at the air-liquid interface as compared to the other Acinetobacter species. This characteristic questions the contribution of this phenotype to an increased risk of clinical infections by this pathogen. Methodology/Principal Findings By a proteomic approach using 2-D gel electrophoresis-LC-MS/MS mass spectrometry, we compared the membrane protein patterns of A. baumannii 77, a pellicle-forming clinical isolate, grown in planktonic and in sessile modes. We identified 52 proteins with a differential expression, including 32 up-regulated and 20 down-regulated in the pellicle state. Several proteins, differentially expressed during pellicle development, were of particular interest. We determined the over-expression of four siderophore iron uptake systems including the acinetobactin and enterobactin receptors and confirmed that the development of this type of biofilm is promoted by ferric ions. Two over-expressed proteins, CarO and an OprD-homologue, putative carbapenem-resistance associated porins, would be involved in the transport of specific compounds, like ornithine, a biosynthesis precursor of a siderophore from the hydroxamate family. We evidenced the overexpression of a lipase and a transporter of LCFA that may be involved in the recycling of lipids inside the pellicle matrix. Finally, we demonstrated both by proteomic and by AFM studies that this particular type of biofilm required multiple pili systems to maintain this cohesive structure at the air-liquid interface; two of these systems have never been described in A. baumannii. Conclusions/Significance Our study demonstrated that several proteins, overexpressed at a late state of pellicle development, could be potentially involved in virulence processes. Therefore, regarding the number of potential virulence factors that are over-expressed in this growth mode, the pellicle-forming clinical

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

    PubMed

    Kim, Jenny Gi Yae; Wilson, Adam C

    2016-03-01

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

  6. Reciprocal interaction between dental alloy biocorrosion and Streptococcus mutans virulent gene expression.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Songmei; Qiu, Jing; Ren, Yanfang; Yu, Weiqiang; Zhang, Fuqiang; Liu, Xiuxin

    2016-04-01

    Corrosion of dental alloys is a major concern in dental restorations. Streptococcus mutans reduces the pH in oral cavity and induces demineralization of the enamel as well as corrosion of restorative dental materials. The rough surfaces of dental alloys induced by corrosion enhance the subsequent accumulation of plaque. In this study, the corrosion process of nickel-chromium (Ni-Cr) and cobalt-chromium (Co-Cr) alloys in a nutrient-rich medium containing S. mutans was studied using inductively coupled plasma atomic emission spectrometry (ICP-AES), X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS) and electrochemical corrosion test. Our results showed that the release of Ni and Co ions increased, particularly after incubation for 3 days. The electrochemical corrosion results showed a significant decrease in the corrosion resistance (Rp) value after the alloys were immersed in the media containing S. mutans for 3 days. Correspondingly, XPS revealed a reduction in the relative dominance of Ni, Co, and Cr in the surface oxides after the alloys were immersed in the S. mutans culture. After removal of the biofilm, the pre-corroded alloys were re-incubated in S. mutans medium, and the expressions of genes associated with the adhesion and acidogenesis of S. mutans, including gtfBCD, gbpB, fif and ldh, were evaluated by detecting the mRNA levels using real-time reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR). We found that the gtfBCD, gbpB, ftf and Idh expression of S. mutans were noticeably increased after incubation with pre-corroded alloys for 24 h. This study demonstrated that S. mutans enhanced the corrosion behavior of the dental alloys, on the other hand, the presence of corroded alloy surfaces up-regulated the virulent gene expression in S. mutans. Compared with smooth surfaces, the rough corroded surfaces of dental alloys accelerated the bacteria-adhesion and corrosion process by changing the virulence gene expression of S. mutans. PMID:26896953

  7. Inactivation of thyA in Staphylococcus aureus attenuates virulence and has a strong impact on metabolism and virulence gene expression.

    PubMed

    Kriegeskorte, Andre; Block, Desiree; Drescher, Mike; Windmüller, Nadine; Mellmann, Alexander; Baum, Cathrin; Neumann, Claudia; Lorè, Nicola Ivan; Bragonzi, Alessandra; Liebau, Eva; Hertel, Patrick; Seggewiss, Jochen; Becker, Karsten; Proctor, Richard A; Peters, Georg; Kahl, Barbara C

    2014-01-01

    Staphylococcus aureus thymidine-dependent small-colony variants (TD-SCVs) are frequently isolated from patients with chronic S. aureus infections after long-term treatment with trimethoprim-sulfamethoxazole (TMP-SMX). While it has been shown that TD-SCVs were associated with mutations in thymidylate synthase (TS; thyA), the impact of such mutations on protein function is lacking. In this study, we showed that mutations in thyA were leading to inactivity of TS proteins, and TS inactivity led to tremendous impact on S. aureus physiology and virulence. Whole DNA microarray analysis of the constructed ΔthyA mutant identified severe alterations compared to the wild type. Important virulence regulators (agr, arlRS, sarA) and major virulence determinants (hla, hlb, sspAB, and geh) were downregulated, while genes important for colonization (fnbA, fnbB, spa, clfB, sdrC, and sdrD) were upregulated. The expression of genes involved in pyrimidine and purine metabolism and nucleotide interconversion changed significantly. NupC was identified as a major nucleoside transporter, which supported growth of the mutant during TMP-SMX exposure by uptake of extracellular thymidine. The ΔthyA mutant was strongly attenuated in virulence models, including a Caenorhabditis elegans killing model and an acute pneumonia mouse model. This study identified inactivation of TS as the molecular basis of clinical TD-SCV and showed that thyA activity has a major role for S. aureus virulence and physiology. Importance: Thymidine-dependent small-colony variants (TD-SCVs) of Staphylococcus aureus carry mutations in the thymidylate synthase (TS) gene (thyA) responsible for de novo synthesis of thymidylate, which is essential for DNA synthesis. TD-SCVs have been isolated from patients treated for long periods with trimethoprim-sulfamethoxazole (TMP-SMX) and are associated with chronic and recurrent infections. In the era of community-associated methicillin-resistant S. aureus, the therapeutic use of TMP

  8. Comparative Transcriptome Profiling Reveals Different Expression Patterns in Xanthomonas oryzae pv. oryzae Strains with Putative Virulence-Relevant Genes

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Fan; Du, Zhenglin; Huang, Liyu; Cruz, Casiana Vera; Zhou, Yongli; Li, Zhikang

    2013-01-01

    Xanthomonas oryzae pv. oryzae (Xoo) is the causal agent of rice bacterial blight, which is a major rice disease in tropical Asian countries. An attempt has been made to investigate gene expression patterns of three Xoo strains on the minimal medium XOM2, PXO99 (P6) and PXO86 (P2) from the Philippines, and GD1358 (C5) from China, which exhibited different virulence in 30 rice varieties, with putative virulence factors using deep sequencing. In total, 4,781 transcripts were identified in this study, and 1,151 and 3,076 genes were differentially expressed when P6 was compared with P2 and with C5, respectively. Our results indicated that Xoo strains from different regions exhibited distinctly different expression patterns of putative virulence-relevant genes. Interestingly, 40 and 44 genes involved in chemotaxis and motility exhibited higher transcript alterations in C5 compared with P6 and P2, respectively. Most other genes associated with virulence, including exopolysaccharide (EPS) synthesis, Hrp genes and type III effectors, including Xanthomonas outer protein (Xop) effectors and transcription activator-like (TAL) effectors, were down-regulated in C5 compared with P6 and P2. The data were confirmed by real-time quantitative RT-PCR, tests of bacterial motility, and enzyme activity analysis of EPS and xylanase. These results highlight the complexity of Xoo and offer new avenues for improving our understanding of Xoo-rice interactions and the evolution of Xoo virulence. PMID:23734193

  9. Virulent Shigella flexneri subverts the host innate immune response through manipulation of antimicrobial peptide gene expression

    PubMed Central

    Sperandio, Brice; Regnault, Béatrice; Guo, Jianhua; Zhang, Zhi; Stanley, Samuel L.; Sansonetti, Philippe J.; Pédron, Thierry

    2008-01-01

    Antimicrobial factors are efficient defense components of the innate immunity, playing a crucial role in the intestinal homeostasis and protection against pathogens. In this study, we report that upon infection of polarized human intestinal cells in vitro, virulent Shigella flexneri suppress transcription of several genes encoding antimicrobial cationic peptides, particularly the human β-defensin hBD-3, which we show to be especially active against S. flexneri. This is an example of targeted survival strategy. We also identify the MxiE bacterial regulator, which controls a regulon encompassing a set of virulence plasmid-encoded effectors injected into host cells and regulating innate signaling, as being responsible for this dedicated regulatory process. In vivo, in a model of human intestinal xenotransplant, we confirm at the transcriptional and translational level, the presence of a dedicated MxiE-dependent system allowing S. flexneri to suppress expression of antimicrobial cationic peptides and promoting its deeper progression toward intestinal crypts. We demonstrate that this system is also able to down-regulate additional innate immunity genes, such as the chemokine CCL20 gene, leading to compromised recruitment of dendritic cells to the lamina propria of infected tissues. Thus, S. flexneri has developed a dedicated strategy to weaken the innate immunity to manage its survival and colonization ability in the intestine. PMID:18426984

  10. Leucine metabolism regulates TRI6 expression and affects deoxynivalenol production and virulence in Fusarium graminearum.

    PubMed

    Subramaniam, Rajagopal; Narayanan, Swara; Walkowiak, Sean; Wang, Li; Joshi, Manisha; Rocheleau, Hélène; Ouellet, Thérèse; Harris, Linda J

    2015-11-01

    TRI6 is a positive regulator of the trichothecene gene cluster and the production of trichothecene mycotoxins [deoxynivalenol (DON)] and acetylated forms such as 15-Acetyl-DON) in the cereal pathogen Fusarium graminearum. As a global transcriptional regulator, TRI6 expression is modulated by nitrogen-limiting conditions, sources of nitrogen and carbon, pH and light. However, the mechanism by which these diverse environmental factors affect TRI6 expression remains underexplored. In our effort to understand how nutrients affect TRI6 regulation, comparative digital expression profiling was performed with a wild-type F. graminearum and a Δtri6 mutant strain, grown in nutrient-rich conditions. Analysis showed that TRI6 negatively regulates genes of the branched-chain amino acid (BCAA) metabolic pathway. Feeding studies with deletion mutants of MCC, encoding methylcrotonyl-CoA-carboxylase, one of the key enzymes of leucine metabolism, showed that addition of leucine specifically down-regulated TRI6 expression and reduced 15-ADON accumulation. Constitutive expression of TRI6 in the Δmcc mutant strain restored 15-ADON production. A combination of cellophane breach assays and pathogenicity experiments on wheat demonstrated that disrupting the leucine metabolic pathway significantly reduced disease. These findings suggest a complex interaction between one of the primary metabolic pathways with a global regulator of mycotoxin biosynthesis and virulence in F. graminearum. PMID:26248604

  11. Growth-Phase-Dependent Expression of Virulence Factors in an M1T1 Clinical Isolate of Streptococcus pyogenes

    PubMed Central

    Unnikrishnan, Meera; Cohen, Jonathan; Sriskandan, Shiranee

    1999-01-01

    The effect of growth phase on expression of virulence-associated factors was studied by Northern hybridization in an M1T1 clinical isolate of Streptococcus pyogenes. Expression of M protein, C5a peptidase, and capsule was maximal in the exponential phase of growth, while streptococcal pyrogenic exotoxins A and B and mitogenic factor were maximally expressed in later phases of growth. PMID:10496938

  12. Growth-phase-dependent expression of virulence factors in an M1T1 clinical isolate of Streptococcus pyogenes.

    PubMed

    Unnikrishnan, M; Cohen, J; Sriskandan, S

    1999-10-01

    The effect of growth phase on expression of virulence-associated factors was studied by Northern hybridization in an M1T1 clinical isolate of Streptococcus pyogenes. Expression of M protein, C5a peptidase, and capsule was maximal in the exponential phase of growth, while streptococcal pyrogenic exotoxins A and B and mitogenic factor were maximally expressed in later phases of growth. PMID:10496938

  13. Differential Virulence Gene Expression of Group A Streptococcus Serotype M3 in Response to Co-Culture with Moraxella catarrhalis

    PubMed Central

    Verhaegh, Suzanne J. C.; Flores, Anthony R.; van Belkum, Alex; Musser, James M.; Hays, John P.

    2013-01-01

    Streptococcus pyogenes (group A Streptococcus, GAS) and Moraxella catarrhalis are important colonizers and (opportunistic) pathogens of the human respiratory tract. However, current knowledge regarding colonization and pathogenic potential of these two pathogens is based on work involving single bacterial species, even though the interplay between respiratory bacterial species is increasingly important in niche occupation and the development of disease. Therefore, to further define and understand polymicrobial species interactions, we investigated whether gene expression (and hence virulence potential) of GAS would be affected upon co-culture with M. catarrhalis. For co-culture experiments, GAS and M. catarrhalis were cultured in Todd-Hewitt broth supplemented with 0.2% yeast extract (THY) at 37°C with 5% CO2 aeration. Each strain was grown in triplicate so that triplicate experiments could be performed. Bacterial RNA was isolated, cDNA synthesized, and microarray transcriptome expression analysis performed. We observed significantly increased (≥4-fold) expression for genes playing a role in GAS virulence such as hyaluronan synthase (hasA), streptococcal mitogenic exotoxin Z (smeZ) and IgG endopeptidase (ideS). In contrast, significantly decreased (≥4-fold) expression was observed in genes involved in energy metabolism and in 12 conserved GAS two-component regulatory systems. This study provides the first evidence that M. catarrhalis increases GAS virulence gene expression during co-culture, and again shows the importance of polymicrobial infections in directing bacterial virulence. PMID:23626831

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

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wilson, J. W.; Ott, C. M.; zuBentrup, K. Honer; Ramamurthy R.; Quick, L.; Porwollik, S.; Cheng, P.; McClellan, M.; Tsaprailis, G.; Radabaugh, T.; Hunt, A.; Fernandez, D.; Richter, E.; Shah, M.; Kilcoyne, M.; Joshi, L.; Nelman-Gonzalez, M.; Hing, S.; Parra, M.; Dumaras, P.; Norwood, K.; Nickerson, C. A.; Bober, R.; Devich, J.; Ruggles, A.

    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.

  15. Space flight alters bacterial gene expression and virulence and reveals a role for global regulator Hfq

    PubMed Central

    Wilson, J. W.; Ott, C. M.; zu Bentrup, K. Höner; Ramamurthy, R.; Quick, L.; Porwollik, S.; Cheng, P.; McClelland, M.; Tsaprailis, G.; Radabaugh, T.; Hunt, A.; Fernandez, D.; Richter, E.; Shah, M.; Kilcoyne, M.; Joshi, L.; Nelman-Gonzalez, M.; Hing, S.; Parra, M.; Dumars, P.; Norwood, K.; Bober, R.; Devich, J.; Ruggles, A.; Goulart, C.; Rupert, M.; Stodieck, L.; Stafford, P.; Catella, L.; Schurr, M. J.; Buchanan, K.; Morici, L.; McCracken, J.; Allen, P.; Baker-Coleman, C.; Hammond, T.; Vogel, J.; Nelson, R.; Pierson, D. L.; Stefanyshyn-Piper, H. M.; Nickerson, C. A.

    2007-01-01

    A comprehensive analysis of both the molecular genetic and phenotypic responses of any organism to the space flight environment has never been accomplished because of significant technological and logistical hurdles. Moreover, the effects of space flight 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 with identical ground control cultures. Global microarray and proteomic analyses revealed that 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. Space flight 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 space flight missions and provide novel therapeutic options on Earth. PMID:17901201

  16. Real-Time Characterization of Virulence Factor Expression in Yersinia pestis Using a Green Fluorescent Protein Reporter System

    SciTech Connect

    Forde, C; Rocco, J; Fitch, J P; McCutchen-Maloney, S

    2004-06-09

    A real-time reporter system was developed to monitor the thermal induction of virulence factors in Yersinia pestis. The reporter system consists of a plasmid in Y. pestis in which the expression of green fluorescent protein (GFP) is under the control of the promoters for six virulence factors, yopE, sycE, yopK, yopT, yscN, and lcrE/yopN, which are all components of the Type III secretion virulence mechanism of Y. pestis. Induction of the expression of these genes in vivo was determined by the increase in fluorescence intensity of GFP in real time. Basal expression levels observed for the Y. pestis promoters, expressed as percentages of the positive control with GFP under the control of the lac promoter, were: yopE (15%), sycE (15%), yopK (13%), yopT (4%), lcrE (3.3%) and yscN (0.8%). The yopE reporter showed the strongest gene induction following temperature transition from 26 C to 37 C. The induction levels of the other virulence factors, expressed as percentages of yopE induction, were: yopK (57%), sycE (9%), yscN (3%), lcrE (3%), and yopT (2%). The thermal induction of each of these promoter fusions was repressed by calcium, and the ratios of the initial rates of thermal induction without calcium supplementation compared to the rate with calcium supplementation were: yopE (11 fold), yscN (7 fold), yopK (6 fold), lcrE (3 fold), yopT (2 fold), and sycE (2 fold). This work demonstrates a novel approach to quantify gene induction and provides a method to rapidly determine the effects of external stimuli on expression of Y. pestis virulence factors in real time, in living cells.

  17. Identification of over-expressed genes in modified live vaccine strain of Edwardsiella ictaluri compared to virulent strain

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Using PCR-select subtractive cDNA hybridization technique, 41 expressed sequence tags (ESTs) were isolated from a modified live vaccine strain (AQUAVAC-ESC, formerly RE-33) vs a virulent parent strain (EILO) of Edwardsiella ictaluri. Transcriptional levels of the 41 ESTs in the vaccine strain and th...

  18. Iron concentration limits growth rate and the expression of virulence factors in hrp-inducing minimal medium with Pseudomonas syringae

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Although chemically-defined media have been developed and widely used to study the expression of virulence factors in the model plant pathogen, Pseudomonas syringae, it has been difficult to link specific medium components to the induction response. Using a chemostat system, we found that iron is th...

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

    PubMed

    Hampel, Martin; Jakobi, Mareike; Schmitz, Lara; Meyer, Ute; Finkernagel, Florian; Doehlemann, Gunther; Heimel, Kai

    2016-01-01

    The unfolded protein response (UPR), a conserved eukaryotic signaling pathway to ensure protein homeostasis in the endoplasmic reticulum (ER), coordinates biotrophic development in the corn smut fungus Ustilago maydis. Exact timing of UPR activation is required for virulence and presumably connected to the elevated expression of secreted effector proteins during infection of the host plant Zea mays. In the baker's yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae, expression of UPR target genes is induced upon binding of the central regulator Hac1 to unfolded protein response elements (UPREs) in their promoters. While a role of the UPR in effector secretion has been described previously, we investigated a potential UPR-dependent regulation of genes encoding secreted effector proteins. In silico prediction of UPREs in promoter regions identified the previously characterized effector genes pit2 and tin1-1, as bona fide UPR target genes. Furthermore, direct binding of the Hac1-homolog Cib1 to the UPRE containing promoter fragments of both genes was confirmed by quantitative chromatin immunoprecipitation (qChIP) analysis. Targeted deletion of the UPRE abolished Cib1-dependent expression of pit2 and significantly affected virulence. Furthermore, ER stress strongly increased Pit2 expression and secretion. This study expands the role of the UPR as a signal hub in fungal virulence and illustrates, how biotrophic fungi can coordinate cellular physiology, development and regulation of secreted virulence factors. PMID:27093436

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

    PubMed Central

    Hampel, Martin; Jakobi, Mareike; Schmitz, Lara; Meyer, Ute; Finkernagel, Florian; Doehlemann, Gunther; Heimel, Kai

    2016-01-01

    The unfolded protein response (UPR), a conserved eukaryotic signaling pathway to ensure protein homeostasis in the endoplasmic reticulum (ER), coordinates biotrophic development in the corn smut fungus Ustilago maydis. Exact timing of UPR activation is required for virulence and presumably connected to the elevated expression of secreted effector proteins during infection of the host plant Zea mays. In the baker’s yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae, expression of UPR target genes is induced upon binding of the central regulator Hac1 to unfolded protein response elements (UPREs) in their promoters. While a role of the UPR in effector secretion has been described previously, we investigated a potential UPR-dependent regulation of genes encoding secreted effector proteins. In silico prediction of UPREs in promoter regions identified the previously characterized effector genes pit2 and tin1-1, as bona fide UPR target genes. Furthermore, direct binding of the Hac1-homolog Cib1 to the UPRE containing promoter fragments of both genes was confirmed by quantitative chromatin immunoprecipitation (qChIP) analysis. Targeted deletion of the UPRE abolished Cib1-dependent expression of pit2 and significantly affected virulence. Furthermore, ER stress strongly increased Pit2 expression and secretion. This study expands the role of the UPR as a signal hub in fungal virulence and illustrates, how biotrophic fungi can coordinate cellular physiology, development and regulation of secreted virulence factors. PMID:27093436

  1. Effect of modified atmosphere on persistence and virulence expression of Escherichia coli O157:H7 on shredded lettuce

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Introduction: Packaged fresh-cut lettuce contaminated with Escherichia coli O157:H7 has caused several outbreaks of infections. The influence of packaging and storage temperature may affect the persistence and expression of virulence factors of the pathogen, affecting the ability of the pathogen to...

  2. The SloR/Dlg Metalloregulator Modulates Streptococcus mutans Virulence Gene Expression

    PubMed Central

    Rolerson, Elizabeth; Swick, Adam; Newlon, Lindsay; Palmer, Cameron; Pan, Yong; Keeshan, Britton; Spatafora, Grace

    2006-01-01

    Metal ion availability in the human oral cavity plays a putative role in Streptococcus mutans virulence gene expression and in appropriate formation of the plaque biofilm. In this report, we present evidence that supports such a role for the DtxR-like SloR metalloregulator (called Dlg in our previous publications) in this oral pathogen. Specifically, the results of gel mobility shift assays revealed the sloABC, sloR, comDE, ropA, sod, and spaP promoters as targets of SloR binding. We confirmed differential expression of these genes in a GMS584 SloR-deficient mutant versus the UA159 wild-type progenitor by real-time semiquantitative reverse transcriptase PCR experiments. The results of additional expression studies support a role for SloR in S. mutans control of glucosyltransferases, glucan binding proteins, and genes relevant to antibiotic resistance. Phenotypic analysis of GMS584 revealed that it forms aberrant biofilms on an abiotic surface, is compromised for genetic competence, and demonstrates heightened incorporation of iron and manganese as well as resistance to oxidative stress compared to the wild type. Taken together, these findings support a role for SloR in S. mutans adherence, biofilm formation, genetic competence, metal ion homeostasis, oxidative stress tolerance, and antibiotic gene regulation, all of which contribute to S. mutans-induced disease. PMID:16816176

  3. The SloR/Dlg metalloregulator modulates Streptococcus mutans virulence gene expression.

    PubMed

    Rolerson, Elizabeth; Swick, Adam; Newlon, Lindsay; Palmer, Cameron; Pan, Yong; Keeshan, Britton; Spatafora, Grace

    2006-07-01

    Metal ion availability in the human oral cavity plays a putative role in Streptococcus mutans virulence gene expression and in appropriate formation of the plaque biofilm. In this report, we present evidence that supports such a role for the DtxR-like SloR metalloregulator (called Dlg in our previous publications) in this oral pathogen. Specifically, the results of gel mobility shift assays revealed the sloABC, sloR, comDE, ropA, sod, and spaP promoters as targets of SloR binding. We confirmed differential expression of these genes in a GMS584 SloR-deficient mutant versus the UA159 wild-type progenitor by real-time semiquantitative reverse transcriptase PCR experiments. The results of additional expression studies support a role for SloR in S. mutans control of glucosyltransferases, glucan binding proteins, and genes relevant to antibiotic resistance. Phenotypic analysis of GMS584 revealed that it forms aberrant biofilms on an abiotic surface, is compromised for genetic competence, and demonstrates heightened incorporation of iron and manganese as well as resistance to oxidative stress compared to the wild type. Taken together, these findings support a role for SloR in S. mutans adherence, biofilm formation, genetic competence, metal ion homeostasis, oxidative stress tolerance, and antibiotic gene regulation, all of which contribute to S. mutans-induced disease. PMID:16816176

  4. Canine Distemper Viruses Expressing a Hemagglutinin without N-Glycans Lose Virulence but Retain Immunosuppression▿

    PubMed Central

    Sawatsky, Bevan; von Messling, Veronika

    2010-01-01

    Paramyxovirus glycoproteins are posttranslationally modified by the addition of N-linked glycans, which are often necessary for correct folding, processing, and cell surface expression. To establish the contribution of N glycosylation to morbillivirus attachment (H) protein function and overall virulence, we first determined the use of the potential N-glycosylation sites in the canine distemper virus (CDV) H proteins. Biochemical characterization revealed that the three sites conserved in all strains were N glycosylated, whereas only two of the up to five additional sites present in wild-type strains are used. A wild-type virus with an H protein reproducing the vaccine strain N-glycosylation pattern remained lethal in ferrets but with a prolonged course of disease. In contrast, introduction of the vaccine H protein in the wild-type context resulted in complete attenuation. To further characterize the role of N glycosylation in CDV pathogenesis, the N-glycosylation sites of wild-type H proteins were successively deleted, including a nonstandard site, to ultimately generate a nonglycosylated H protein. Despite reduced expression levels, this protein remained fully functional. Recombinant viruses expressing N-glycan-deficient H proteins no longer caused disease, even though their immunosuppressive capacities were retained, indicating that reduced N glycosylation contributes to attenuation without affecting immunosuppression. PMID:20042514

  5. A spectrum of CodY activities drives metabolic reorganization and virulence gene expression in Staphylococcus aureus.

    PubMed

    Waters, Nicholas R; Samuels, David J; Behera, Ranjan K; Livny, Jonathan; Rhee, Kyu Y; Sadykov, Marat R; Brinsmade, Shaun R

    2016-08-01

    The global regulator CodY controls the expression of dozens of metabolism and virulence genes in the opportunistic pathogen Staphylococcus aureus in response to the availability of isoleucine, leucine and valine (ILV), and GTP. Using RNA-Seq transcriptional profiling and partial activity variants, we reveal that S. aureus CodY activity grades metabolic and virulence gene expression as a function of ILV availability, mediating metabolic reorganization and controlling virulence factor production in vitro. Strains lacking CodY regulatory activity produce a PIA-dependent biofilm, but development is restricted under conditions that confer partial CodY activity. CodY regulates the expression of thermonuclease (nuc) via the Sae two-component system, revealing cascading virulence regulation and factor production as CodY activity is reduced. Proteins that mediate the host-pathogen interaction and subvert the immune response are shut off at intermediate levels of CodY activity, while genes coding for enzymes and proteins that extract nutrients from tissue, that kill host cells, and that synthesize amino acids are among the last genes to be derepressed. We conclude that S. aureus uses CodY to limit host damage to only the most severe starvation conditions, providing insight into one potential mechanism by which S. aureus transitions from a commensal bacterium to an invasive pathogen. PMID:27116338

  6. The effect of γ radiation on the expression of the virulence genes of Salmonella typhimurium and Vibrio spp.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lim, Sangyong; Jung, Jinwoo; Kim, Dongho

    2007-11-01

    The principle benefit of food irradiation is the reduction of food-borne bacteria in food products. However, the microbiological safety with respect to increased virulence of surviving pathogens after irradiation remains an important issue with regard to the effectiveness of food irradiation. In this study, the transcriptional changes of virulence genes of Salmonella and Vibrio spp. after γ radiation were investigated by real-time PCR (RT-PCR). Samonella typhimurium is dependent upon the products of a large number of genes located within Salmonella pathogenicity islands (SPI) on the chromosome. The expressions of seven genes including four SPI genes, hilD, ssrB, pipB, and sopD, were measured at 1 h after 1 kGy irradiation. Compared with non-irradiated controls, the expression of hilD encoded within SPI1 and sopD encoding SPI1-related effector proteins was reduced about 4- and 16-fold, respectively. The expressions of Vibrio toxin genes, vvhA, ctxA, and tdh, were also monitored during the course of a growth cycle after re-inoculation of irradiated Vibrio spp. (0.5 and 1.0 kGy). The expressions of Vibrio toxin genes tested did not increase compared with non-irradiated counterparts. Results from this study indicate that γ radiation is much more likely to reduce the virulence gene expression of surviving pathogens.

  7. Intercellular and intracellular signalling systems that globally control the expression of virulence genes in plant pathogenic bacteria.

    PubMed

    Ham, Jong Hyun

    2013-04-01

    Plant pathogenic bacteria utilize complex signalling systems to control the expression of virulence genes at the cellular level and within populations. Quorum sensing (QS), an important intercellular communication mechanism, is mediated by different types of small molecules, including N-acyl homoserine lactones (AHLs), fatty acids and small proteins. AHL-mediated signalling systems dependent on the LuxI and LuxR family proteins play critical roles in the virulence of a wide range of Gram-negative plant pathogenic bacteria belonging to the Alphaproteobacteria, Betaproteobacteria and Gammaproteobacteria. Xanthomonas spp. and Xylella fastidiosa, members of the Gammaproteobacteria, however, possess QS systems that are mediated by fatty acid-type diffusible signal factors (DSFs). Recent studies have demonstrated that Ax21, a 194-amino-acid protein in Xanthomonas oryzae pv. oryzae, plays dual functions in activating a rice innate immune pathway through binding to the rice XA21 pattern recognition receptor and in regulating bacterial virulence and biofilm formation as a QS signal molecule. In xanthomonads, DSF-mediated QS systems are connected with the signalling pathways mediated by cyclic diguanosine monophosphate (c-di-GMP), which functions as a second messenger for the control of virulence gene expression in these bacterial pathogens. PMID:23186372

  8. Pallial mucus of the oyster Crassostrea virginica regulates the expression of putative virulence genes of its pathogen Perkinsus marinus.

    PubMed

    Pales Espinosa, Emmanuelle; Corre, Erwan; Allam, Bassem

    2014-04-01

    Perkinsus marinus is a pathogen responsible for severe mortalities of the eastern oyster Crassostrea virginica along the East and Gulf coasts of the United States. When cultivated, the pathogenicity of this microorganism decreases significantly, hampering the study of its virulence factors. Recent investigations have shown a significant increase of the in vivo virulence of P. marinus exposed to oyster pallial mucus. In the current study, we investigated the effect of pallial mucus on P. marinus gene expression compared with cultures supplemented with oyster digestive extracts or with un-supplemented cultures. In parallel, parasite cells cultured under these three conditions were used to challenge oysters and to assess virulence in vivo. Perkinsus marinus mRNA sequencing was performed on an Illumina GAIIX sequencer and data were analysed using the Tuxedo RNAseq suite for mapping against the draft P. marinus genome and for differential expression analysis. Results showed that exposure of P. marinus to mucus induces significant regulation of nearly 3,600 transcripts, many of which are considered as putative virulence factors. Pallial mucus is suspected to mimic internal host conditions, thereby preparing the pathogen to overcome defense factors before invasion. This hypothesis is supported by significant regulation in several antioxidant proteins, heat shock proteins, protease inhibitors and proteasome subunits. In addition, mucus exposure induced the modulation of several genes known to affect immunity and apoptosis in vertebrates and invertebrates. Several proteases (proteolysis) and merozoite surface proteins (cell recognition) were also modulated. Overall, these results provide a baseline for targeted, in depth analysis of candidate virulence factors in P. marinus. PMID:24560916

  9. Effects of the ERES pathogenicity region regulator Ralp3 on Streptococcus pyogenes serotype M49 virulence factor expression.

    PubMed

    Siemens, Nikolai; Fiedler, Tomas; Normann, Jana; Klein, Johannes; Münch, Richard; Patenge, Nadja; Kreikemeyer, Bernd

    2012-07-01

    Streptococcus pyogenes (group A streptococcus [GAS]) is a highly virulent Gram-positive bacterium. For successful infection, GAS expresses many virulence factors, which are clustered together with transcriptional regulators in distinct genomic regions. Ralp3 is a central regulator of the ERES region. In this study, we investigated the role of Ralp3 in GAS M49 pathogenesis. The inactivation of Ralp3 resulted in reduced attachment to and internalization into human keratinocytes. The Δralp3 mutant failed to survive in human blood and serum, and the hyaluronic acid capsule was slightly decreased. In addition, the mutant showed a lower binding capacity to human plasminogen, and the SpeB activity was significantly decreased. Complementation of the Δralp3 mutant restored the wild-type phenotype. The transcriptome and quantitative reverse transcription-PCR analysis of the serotype M49 GAS strain and its isogenic Δralp3 mutant identified 16 genes as upregulated, and 43 genes were found to be downregulated. Among the downregulated genes, there were open reading frames encoding proteins involved in metabolism (e.g., both lac operons and the fru operon), genes encoding lantibiotics (e.g., the putative salivaricin operon), and ORFs encoding virulence factors (such as the whole Mga core regulon and further genes under Mga control). In summary, the ERES region regulator Ralp3 is an important serotype-specific transcriptional regulator for virulence and metabolic control. PMID:22544273

  10. Exposure to Synthetic Gray Water Inhibits Amoeba Encystation and Alters Expression of Legionella pneumophila Virulence Genes

    PubMed Central

    Lu, Jingrang; Ashbolt, Nicholas J.

    2014-01-01

    Water conservation efforts have focused on gray water (GW) usage, especially for applications that do not require potable water quality. However, there is a need to better understand environmental pathogens and their free-living amoeba (FLA) hosts within GW, given their growth potential in stored gray water. Using synthetic gray water (sGW) we examined three strains of the water-based pathogen Legionella pneumophila and its FLA hosts Acanthamoeba polyphaga, A. castellanii, and Vermamoeba vermiformis. Exposure to sGW for 72 h resulted in significant inhibition (P < 0.0001) of amoebal encystation versus control-treated cells, with the following percentages of cysts in sGW versus controls: A. polyphaga (0.6 versus 6%), A. castellanii (2 versus 62%), and V. vermiformis (1 versus 92%), suggesting sGW induced maintenance of the actively feeding trophozoite form. During sGW exposure, L. pneumophila culturability decreased as early as 5 h (1.3 to 2.9 log10 CFU, P < 0.001) compared to controls (Δ0 to 0.1 log10 CFU) with flow cytometric analysis revealing immediate changes in membrane permeability. Furthermore, reverse transcription-quantitative PCR was performed on total RNA isolated from L. pneumophila cells at 0 to 48 h after sGW incubation, and genes associated with virulence (gacA, lirR, csrA, pla, and sidF), the type IV secretion system (lvrB and lvrE), and metabolism (ccmF and lolA) were all shown to be differentially expressed. These results suggest that conditions within GW may promote interactions between water-based pathogens and FLA hosts, through amoebal encystment inhibition and alteration of bacterial gene expression, thus warranting further exploration into FLA and L. pneumophila behavior in GW systems. PMID:25381242

  11. Regulated expression of the Leishmania major surface virulence factor lipophosphoglycan using conditionally destabilized fusion proteins

    PubMed Central

    Madeira da Silva, Luciana; Owens, Katherine L.; Murta, Silvane M. F.; Beverley, Stephen M.

    2009-01-01

    Surface glycoconjugates play important roles in the infectious cycle of Leishmania major, including the abundant lipophosphoglycan (LPG) implicated in parasite survival in the sand fly vector and the initial stages of establishment in the mammalian host macrophage. We describe a system for inducible expression of LPG, applying a novel protein-based system that allows controlled degradation of a key LPG biosynthetic enzyme, UDP-galactopyranose mutase (UGM). This methodology relies on a mutated FK506-binding protein (FKBP) destabilizing domain (dd) fused to the protein of interest; in the absence of rapamycin analogs, such as Shld1, the dd domain is destabilized, leading to proteasomal degradation, whereas drug treatment confers stabilization. Tests in L. major using dd fusions to a panel of reporters and cellular proteins confirmed its functionality, with a high degree of regulation and low background, and we established the kinetics of protein activation and/or loss. Two inexpensive and widely available ligands, FK506 and rapamycin, functioned similarly to Shld1, without effect on Leishmania growth or differentiation. We generated parasites lacking UGM through deletion of the GLF gene and substitution with a ddGLF fusion construct, either as chromosomal knockins or through episomal complementation; these showed little or no LPG expression in the absence of inducer, whereas in its presence, high levels of LPG were attained rapidly. Complement lysis tests confirmed the correct integrity of the Leishmania LPG coat. These data suggest that the dd approach has great promise in the study of LPG and other pathways relevant to parasite survival and virulence. PMID:19383793

  12. Expression of rabbit IL-4 by recombinant myxoma viruses enhances virulence and overcomes genetic resistance to myxomatosis.

    PubMed

    Kerr, P J; Perkins, H D; Inglis, B; Stagg, R; McLaughlin, E; Collins, S V; Van Leeuwen, B H

    2004-06-20

    Rabbit IL-4 was expressed in the virulent standard laboratory strain (SLS) and the attenuated Uriarra (Ur) strain of myxoma virus with the aim of creating a Th2 cytokine environment and inhibiting the development of an antiviral cell-mediated response to myxomatosis in infected rabbits. This allowed testing of a model for genetic resistance to myxomatosis in wild rabbits that have undergone 50 years of natural selection for resistance to myxomatosis. Expression of IL-4 significantly enhanced virulence of both virulent and attenuated virus strains in susceptible (laboratory) and resistant (wild) rabbits. SLS-IL-4 completely overcame genetic resistance in wild rabbits. The pathogenesis of SLS-IL-4 was compared in susceptible and resistant rabbits. The results support a model for resistance to myxomatosis of an enhanced innate immune response controlling virus replication and allowing an effective antiviral cell-mediated immune response to develop in resistant rabbits. Expression of IL-4 did not overcome immunity to myxomatosis induced by immunization. PMID:15183059

  13. Analysis of the Flavobacterium columnare transcriptome reveals gene expression signatures mediating virulence

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Flavobacterium columnare, the causative agent of columnaris disease causes substantial mortality worldwide in numerous freshwater cultured fish species. Despite its importance, a broader understanding of the genes and their protein products that mediate virulence is urgently needed. Therefore, in t...

  14. AlgR functions in algC expression and virulence in Pseudomonas syringae pv. syringae.

    PubMed

    Peñaloza-Vázquez, Alejandro; Fakhr, Mohamed K; Bailey, Ana M; Bender, Carol L

    2004-08-01

    Pseudomonas syringae pv. syringae strain FF5 is a phytopathogen associated with a rapid dieback on ornamental pear trees. P. syringae and the human pathogen Pseudomonas aeruginosa produce the exopolysaccharide alginate, a copolymer of mannuronic and guluronic acid. In P. aeruginosa, the response regulator AlgR (AlgR1) is required for transcription of algC and algD, which encode key enzymes in the alginate biosynthetic pathway. In P. syringae FF5, however, algR is not required for the activation of algD. Interestingly, algR mutants of P. syringae remain nonmucoid, indicating an undefined role for this response regulator in alginate biosynthesis. In the current study, the algC promoter region was cloned from P. syringae pv. syringae strain FF5, and sequence analysis of the algC promoter indicated the presence of potential binding sites for AlgR and sigma(54), the alternative sigma factor encoded by rpoN. The algC promoter from P. syringae FF5 (PsalgC) was cloned upstream of a promoterless glucuronidase gene (uidA), and the PsalgC-uidA transcriptional fusion was used to monitor algC expression in strains FF5.32 (algR mutant of P. syringae FF5) and PG4180.K2 (rpoN mutant of P. syringae pv. glycinea PG4180). Expression of the PsalgC-uidA fusion was fourfold lower in both the algR and rpoN mutants as compared to respective wild-type strains, indicating that both AlgR and sigma(54) are required for full activation of algC transcription in P. syringae pv. syringae. AlgR from P. syringae was successfully overproduced in Escherichia coli as a C-terminal translational fusion to the maltose-binding protein (MBP). Gel shift experiments indicated that MBP-AlgR binds strongly to the algC promoter region. Biological assays demonstrated that the algR mutant was significantly impaired in both pathogenicity and epiphytic fitness as compared to the wild-type strain. These results, along with the gene expression studies, indicate that AlgR has a positive role in the activation of alg

  15. Medicinal plants extracts affect virulence factors expression and biofilm formation by the uropathogenic Escherichia coli.

    PubMed

    Wojnicz, Dorota; Kucharska, Alicja Z; Sokół-Łętowska, Anna; Kicia, Marta; Tichaczek-Goska, Dorota

    2012-12-01

    Medicinal plants are an important source for the therapeutic remedies of various diseases including urinary tract infections. This prompted us to perform research in this area. We decided to focus on medicinal plants species used in urinary tract infections prevention. The aim of our study was to determine the influence of Betula pendula, Equisetum arvense, Herniaria glabra, Galium odoratum, Urtica dioica, and Vaccinium vitis-idaea extracts on bacterial survival and virulence factors involved in tissue colonization and biofilm formation of the uropathogenic Escherichia coli rods. Qualitative and quantitative analysis of plant extracts were performed. Antimicrobial assay relied on the estimation of the colony forming unit number. Hydrophobicity of cells was established by salt aggregation test. Using motility agar, the ability of bacteria to move was examined. The erythrocyte hemagglutination test was used for fimbriae P screening. Curli expression was determined using YESCA agar supplemented with congo red. Quantification of biofilm formation was carried out using a microtiter plate assay and a spectrophotometric method. The results of the study indicate significant differences between investigated extracts in their antimicrobial activities. The extracts of H. glabra and V. vitis-idaea showed the highest growth-inhibitory effects (p < 0.05). Surface hydrophobicity of autoaggregating E. coli strain changed after exposure to all plant extracts, except V. vitis-idaea (p > 0.05). The B. pendula and U. dioica extracts significantly reduced the motility of the E. coli rods (p < 0.05). All the extracts exhibited the anti-biofilm activity. PMID:22915095

  16. Expressed sequence tags reveal genetic diversity and putative virulence factors of the pathogenic oomycete Pythium insidiosum.

    PubMed

    Krajaejun, Theerapong; Khositnithikul, Rommanee; Lerksuthirat, Tassanee; Lowhnoo, Tassanee; Rujirawat, Thidarat; Petchthong, Thanom; Yingyong, Wanta; Suriyaphol, Prapat; Smittipat, Nat; Juthayothin, Tada; Phuntumart, Vipaporn; Sullivan, Thomas D

    2011-07-01

    Oomycetes are unique eukaryotic microorganisms that share a mycelial morphology with fungi. Many oomycetes are pathogenic to plants, and a more limited number are pathogenic to animals. Pythium insidiosum is the only oomycete that is capable of infecting both humans and animals, and causes a life-threatening infectious disease, called "pythiosis". In the majority of pythiosis patients life-long handicaps result from the inevitable radical excision of infected organs, and many die from advanced infection. Better understanding P. insidiosum pathogenesis at molecular levels could lead to new forms of treatment. Genetic and genomic information is lacking for P. insidiosum, so we have undertaken an expressed sequence tag (EST) study, and report on the first dataset of 486 ESTs, assembled into 217 unigenes. Of these, 144 had significant sequence similarity with known genes, including 47 with ribosomal protein homology. Potential virulence factors included genes involved in antioxidation, thermal adaptation, immunomodulation, and iron and sterol binding. Effectors resembling pathogenicity factors of plant-pathogenic oomycetes were also discovered, such as, a CBEL-like protein (possible involvement in host cell adhesion and hemagglutination), a putative RXLR effector (possibly involved in host cell modulation) and elicitin-like (ELL) proteins. Phylogenetic analysis mapped P. insidiosum ELLs to several novel clades of oomycete elicitins (ELIs), and homology modeling predicted that P. insidiosum ELLs should bind sterols. Most of the P. insidiosum ESTs showed homology to sequences in the genome or EST databases of other oomycetes, but one putative gene, with unknown function, was found to be unique to P. insidiosum. The EST dataset reported here represents the first steps in identifying genes of P. insidiosum and beginning transcriptome analysis. This genetic information will facilitate understanding of pathogenic mechanisms of this devastating pathogen. PMID:21724174

  17. Virulence factor expression patterns in Pseudomonas aeruginosa strains from infants with cystic fibrosis.

    PubMed

    Manos, J; Hu, H; Rose, B R; Wainwright, C E; Zablotska, I B; Cheney, J; Turnbull, L; Whitchurch, C B; Grimwood, K; Harmer, C; Anuj, S N; Harbour, C

    2013-12-01

    Pseudomonas aeruginosa is the leading cause of morbidity and mortality in cystic fibrosis (CF). This study examines the role of organism-specific factors in the pathogenesis of very early P. aeruginosa infection in the CF airway. A total of 168 longitudinally collected P. aeruginosa isolates from children diagnosed with CF following newborn screening were genotyped by pulsed-field gel electrophoresis (PFGE) and phenotyped for 13 virulence factors. Ninety-two strains were identified. Associations between virulence factors and gender, exacerbation, persistence, timing of infection and infection site were assessed using multivariate regression analysis. Persistent strains showed significantly lower pyoverdine, rhamnolipid, haemolysin, total protease, and swimming and twitching motility than strains eradicated by aggressive antibiotic treatments. Initial strains had higher levels of virulence factors, and significantly higher phospholipase C, than subsequent genotypically different strains at initial isolation. Strains from males had significantly lower pyoverdine and swimming motility than females. Colony size was significantly smaller in strains isolated during exacerbation than those isolated during non-exacerbation periods. All virulence factors were higher and swimming motility significantly higher in strains from bronchoalveolar lavage (BAL) and oropharyngeal sites than BAL alone. Using unadjusted regression modelling, age at initial infection and age at isolation of a strain showed U-shaped profiles for most virulence factors. Among subsequent strains, longer time since initial infection meant lower levels of most virulence factors. This study provides new insight into virulence factors underpinning impaired airway clearance seen in CF infants, despite aggressive antibiotic therapy. This information will be important in the development of new strategies to reduce the impact of P. aeruginosa in CF. PMID:23832143

  18. Virulent Shigella flexneri Affects Secretion, Expression, and Glycosylation of Gel-Forming Mucins in Mucus-Producing Cells

    PubMed Central

    Sperandio, Brice; Fischer, Natalie; Chevalier-Curt, Marie Joncquel; Rossez, Yannick; Roux, Pascal; Robbe Masselot, Catherine

    2013-01-01

    Mucin glycoproteins are secreted in large amounts by the intestinal epithelium and constitute an efficient component of innate immune defenses to promote homeostasis and protect against enteric pathogens. In this study, our objective was to investigate how the bacterial enteropathogen Shigella flexneri, which causes bacillary dysentery, copes with the mucin defense barrier. We report that upon in vitro infection of mucin-producing polarized human intestinal epithelial cells, virulent S. flexneri manipulates the secretion of gel-forming mucins. This phenomenon, which is triggered only by virulent strains, results in accumulation of mucins at the cell apical surface, leading to the appearance of a gel-like structure that favors access of bacteria to the cell surface and the subsequent invasion process. We identify MUC5AC, a gel-forming mucin, as a component of this structure. Formation of this gel does not depend on modifications of electrolyte concentrations, induction of trefoil factor expression, endoplasmic reticulum stress, or response to unfolded proteins. In addition, transcriptional and biochemical analyses of infected cells reveal modulations of mucin gene expression and modifications of mucin glycosylation patterns, both of which are induced by virulent bacteria in a type III secretion system-dependent manner. Thus, S. flexneri has developed a dedicated strategy to alter the mucus barrier by targeting key elements of the gel-forming capacity of mucins: gene transcription, protein glycosylation, and secretion. PMID:23876800

  19. Predicted highly expressed genes in Nocardia farcinica and the implication to its primary metabolism and nocardial virulence

    SciTech Connect

    Wu, Gang; Nie, Lei; Zhang, Weiwen

    2006-02-23

    Nocardia farcinica is a gram positive, filamentous bacterium, and is considered an opportunistic pathogen. In this study, the highly expressed genes in N. farcinica were predicted using the codon adaptation index (CAI) as a numerical estimator of gene expressivity. Using ribosomal protein (RP) genes as references, the top {approx}10% of the genes were predicted to be the predicted highly expressed (PHX) genes in N. farcinica using a CAI cutoff of greater than 0.73. Consistent with early analysis in Streptomyces genomes, most of the PHX genes in N. farcinica were involved in various ''house-keeping'' functions important for cell growth. However, fifteen genes putatively involved in no cardial virulence were predicted as PHX in N. farcinica, which included genes encoding four Mce virulence proteins, cyclopropane fatty acid synthase which is involved in the modification of cell wall important for nocardia virulence, polyketide synthase PKS13 for mycolic acid synthesis and non-ribosomal peptide synthetase involved in biosynthesis of a mycobactin-related siderophore. In addition, multiple genes involved in defense against reactive oxygen species (ROS) produced by the phagocyte were predicted with high expressivity, which included alkylhydroperoxide reductase (ahpC), catalase (katG), superoxide dismutase (sodF), thioredoxin, thioredoxin reductase, glutathione peroxidase, and peptide methionine sulfoxide reductase, suggesting that combating against ROS was essential for survival of N. farcinica in host cells. The study also showed that the distribution of PHX genes in the N. farcinica circular chromosome was uneven, with more PHX genes located in the regions close to replication initiation site. The results provided the first approximates of global gene expression patterns in N. farcinica, which will be useful in guiding experimental design for further investigation.

  20. Erwinia amylovora Expresses Fast and Simultaneously hrp/dsp Virulence Genes during Flower Infection on Apple Trees

    PubMed Central

    Pester, Doris; Milčevičová, Renáta; Schaffer, Johann; Wilhelm, Eva; Blümel, Sylvia

    2012-01-01

    Background Pathogen entry through host blossoms is the predominant infection pathway of the Gram-negative bacterium Erwinia amylovora leading to manifestation of the disease fire blight. Like in other economically important plant pathogens, E. amylovora pathogenicity depends on a type III secretion system encoded by hrp genes. However, timing and transcriptional order of hrp gene expression during flower infections are unknown. Methodology/Principal Findings Using quantitative real-time PCR analyses, we addressed the questions of how fast, strong and uniform key hrp virulence genes and the effector dspA/E are expressed when bacteria enter flowers provided with the full defense mechanism of the apple plant. In non-invasive bacterial inoculations of apple flowers still attached to the tree, E. amylovora activated expression of key type III secretion genes in a narrow time window, mounting in a single expression peak of all investigated hrp/dspA/E genes around 24–48 h post inoculation (hpi). This single expression peak coincided with a single depression in the plant PR-1 expression at 24 hpi indicating transient manipulation of the salicylic acid pathway as one target of E. amylovora type III effectors. Expression of hrp/dspA/E genes was highly correlated to expression of the regulator hrpL and relative transcript abundances followed the ratio: hrpA>hrpN>hrpL>dspA/E. Acidic conditions (pH 4) in flower infections led to reduced virulence/effector gene expression without the typical expression peak observed under natural conditions (pH 7). Conclusion/Significance The simultaneous expression of hrpL, hrpA, hrpN, and the effector dspA/E during early floral infection indicates that speed and immediate effector transmission is important for successful plant invasion. When this delicate balance is disturbed, e.g., by acidic pH during infection, virulence gene expression is reduced, thus partly explaining the efficacy of acidification in fire blight control on a molecular

  1. Use of a Salmonella typhimurium hilA fusion strain to assess effects of environmental fresh water sources on virulence gene expression.

    PubMed

    Nutt, J D; Pillai, S D; Woodward, C L; Sternes, K L; Zabala-Díaz, I B; Kwon, Y M; Ricke, S C

    2003-08-01

    Many fruits and vegetables are irrigated with water from rivers, lakes and even wastewater systems. Irrigation may be a route for the introduction of Salmonella. Our objectives in this study were to determine survivability and virulence expression in a strain of Salmonella typhimurium when exposed to environmental water sources. Virulence expression was measured using a beta-galactosidase assay on a hilA:lacZY fusion strain of S. typhimurium. Water samples for environmental impact studies were taken from a local pond and specific sites along the Rio Grande River, which serves as a source of irrigation water in southern Texas. There was a significant difference (p<0.05) of virulence expression among the water sites. Certain regions along the Rio Grande River yielded greater amounts of beta-galactosidase activity than others. All sites yielded at least a two-fold greater virulence response than S. typhimurium grown in brain heart infusion. Salmonella survivors were enumerated as colony forming units (CFU)/ml as plated on a selective medium for the duration of 1 week and beta-galactosidase assays were performed to determine a possible correlation between culturable cells and virulence gene expression. Bacterial cells remained viable but decreased after 7 days incubation. In conclusion, water sampled at specific locations and at different times water samples exhibited differences in virulence expression in S. typhimurium. PMID:12834724

  2. Effect of salt and acidic pH on the stability of virulence plasmid (pYV) in Yersinia enterocolitica and expression of virulence-associated characteristics

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The stability of the Yersinia enterocolitica virulence plasmid (pYV) under different NaCl concentrations and under acidic pH conditions was investigated. Exposure of five strains representing five serotypes of pYV-bearing virulent Y. enterocolitica to 0.5, 2 and 5% NaCl and under conditions of pH 4...

  3. The Yersinia pestis V antigen is a regulatory protein necessary for Ca2(+)-dependent growth and maximal expression of low-Ca2+ response virulence genes.

    PubMed Central

    Price, S B; Cowan, C; Perry, R D; Straley, S C

    1991-01-01

    The low-Ca2+ response is a multicomponent virulence regulon of the human-pathogenic yersiniae in which 12 known virulence genes are coordinately regulated in response to environmental cues of temperature, Ca2+, and nucleotides such as ATP. Yersinial growth also is regulated, with full growth yield being permitted at 37 degrees C only if Ca2+ or a nucleotide is present. In this study, we constructed and characterized a mutant Yersinia pestis specifically defective in the gene encoding the V antigen, one of the virulence genes of the low-Ca2+ response. An in-frame internal deletion-insertion mutation was made by removing bases 51 through 645 of lcrV and inserting 61 new bases. The altered lcrV was introduced into the low-Ca2+ response plasmid in Y. pestis by allelic exchange, and the resulting mutant was characterized for its two-dimensional protein profiles, growth, expression of an operon fusion to another low-Ca2+ response virulence operon, and virulence in mice. The mutant had lost its Ca2+ and nucleotide requirement for growth, showed diminished expression of Ca2(+)-and nucleotide-regulated virulence genes, and was avirulent in mice. The mutation could be complemented with respect to the growth property by supplying native V antigen operon sequences in trans in high copy number (on pBR322). Partial complementation of the growth defect and almost complete complementation of the virulence defect were seen with a lower-copy-number complementing replicon (a pACYC184 derivative). The data are consistent with the interpretation that V antigen is bifunctional, with a role in regulating growth and expression of low-Ca2+ response virulence genes in addition to its putative role as a secreted virulence protein. Images PMID:1901573

  4. The response regulator ResD modulates virulence gene expression in response to carbohydrates in Listeria monocytogenes.

    PubMed

    Larsen, Marianne H; Kallipolitis, Birgitte H; Christiansen, Janne K; Olsen, John E; Ingmer, Hanne

    2006-09-01

    Listeria monocytogenes is a versatile bacterial pathogen that is able to accommodate to diverse environmental and host conditions. Presently, we have identified a L. monocytogenes two-component response regulator, ResD that is required for the repression of virulence gene expression known to occur in the presence of easily fermentable carbohydrates not found inside host organisms. Structurally and functionally, ResD resembles the respiration regulator ResD in Bacillus subtilis as deletion of the L. monocytogenes resD reduces respiration and expression of cydA, encoding a subunit of cytochrome bd. The resD mutation also reduces expression of mptA encoding the EIIABman component of a mannose/glucose-specific PTS system, indicating that ResD controls sugar uptake. This notion was supported by the poor growth of resD mutant cells that was alleviated by excess of selected carbohydrates. Despite the growth deficient phenotype of the mutant in vitro the mutation did not affect intracellular multiplication in epithelial or macrophage cell lines. When examining virulence gene expression we observed traditional induction by charcoal in both mutant and wild-type cells whereas the repression observed in wild-type cells by fermentable carbohydrates did not occur in resD mutant cells. Thus, ResD is a central regulator of L. monocytogenes when present in the external environment. PMID:16968229

  5. Correlation between In Vivo Biofilm Formation and Virulence Gene Expression in Escherichia coli O104:H4

    PubMed Central

    Safadi, Rim Al; Abu-Ali, Galeb S.; Sloup, Rudolph E.; Rudrik, James T.; Waters, Christopher M.; Eaton, Kathryn A.; Manning, Shannon D.

    2012-01-01

    The emergence of novel pathogens poses a major public health threat causing widespread epidemics in susceptible populations. The Escherichia coli O104:H4 strain implicated in a 2011 outbreak in northern Germany caused the highest frequency of hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS) and death ever recorded in a single E. coli outbreak. Therefore, it has been suggested that this strain is more virulent than other pathogenic E. coli (e.g., E. coli O157:H7). The E. coli O104:H4 outbreak strain possesses multiple virulence factors from both Shiga toxin (Stx)-producing E. coli (STEC) and enteroaggregative E. coli (EAEC), though the mechanism of pathogenesis is not known. Here, we demonstrate that E. coli O104:H4 produces a stable biofilm in vitro and that in vivo virulence gene expression is highest when E. coli O104:H4 overexpresses genes required for aggregation and exopolysaccharide production, a characteristic of bacterial cells residing within an established biofilm. Interrupting exopolysaccharide production and biofilm formation may therefore represent effective strategies for combating future E. coli O104:H4 infections. PMID:22848550

  6. Virulence plasmid (pYV)-associated expression of phenotypic virulent determinants in pathogenic Yersinia species: a convenient method for monitoring the presence of pYV under culture conditions and its application for....food

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    In Yersinia pestis, Y. pseudotuberculosis, and Y, enterocolitica, phenotypic expression of several virulence plasmid (pYV: 70-kb)-associated genetic determinants may include low calcium response (Lcr, pin point colony, size = 0.36 mm), colony morphology (size = 1.13 mm), crystal violet (CV) binding...

  7. Virulence plasmid (pYV)-associated expression of phenotypic virulent determinants in pathogenic Yersinia species: a convenient method for monitoring the presence of pYV under culture conditions and its application for...food

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    In Yersinia pestis, Y. pseudotuberculosis, and Y, enterocolitica, phenotypic expression of virulence plasmid (pYV: 70-kb)-associated genetic determinants may include low calcium response (Lcr, pin point colony, size = 0.36 mm), colony morphology (size = 1.13 mm), crystal violet (CV) binding (dark-v...

  8. Identification of novel secreted virulence factors from Xylella fastidiosa using a TRV expression system

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Xylella fastidiosa is a bacterium that causes leaf scorch diseases of agriculturally important crops including grapevines and almonds. Little is known about virulence factors that are necessary for X. fastidiosa to grow and cause disease in the xylem vessels of a plant host. Any protein secreted by ...

  9. Interference with Pseudomonas quinolone signal synthesis inhibits virulence factor expression by Pseudomonas aeruginosa

    PubMed Central

    Calfee, M. Worth; Coleman, James P.; Pesci, Everett C.

    2001-01-01

    Pseudomonas aeruginosa is an opportunistic pathogen that controls numerous virulence factors through intercellular signals. This bacterium has two quorum-sensing systems (las and rhl), which act through the intercellular signals N-(3-oxododecanoyl)-l-homoserine lactone (3-oxo-C12-HSL) and N-butyryl-l-homoserine lactone (C4-HSL), respectively. P. aeruginosa also produces a third intercellular signal that is involved in virulence factor regulation. This signal, 2-heptyl-3-hydroxy-4-quinolone [referred to as the Pseudomonas quinolone signal (PQS)], is a secondary metabolite that is part of the P. aeruginosa quorum-sensing hierarchy. PQS can induce both lasB (encodes LasB elastase) and rhlI (encodes the C4-HSL synthase) in P. aeruginosa and is produced maximally during the late stationary phase of growth. Because PQS is an intercellular signal that is part of the quorum-sensing hierarchy and controls multiple virulence factors, we began basic studies designed to elucidate its biosynthetic pathway. First, we present data that strongly suggest that anthranilate is a precursor for PQS. P. aeruginosa converted radiolabeled anthranilate into radioactive PQS, which was bioactive. We also found that an anthranilate analog (methyl anthranilate) would inhibit the production of PQS. This analog was then shown to have a major negative effect on elastase production by P. aeruginosa. These data provide evidence that precursors of intercellular signals may provide viable targets for the development of therapeutic treatments that will reduce P. aeruginosa virulence. PMID:11573001

  10. Phosphorylation events in the multiple gene regulator of group A Streptococcus significantly influence global gene expression and virulence.

    PubMed

    Sanson, Misu; Makthal, Nishanth; Gavagan, Maire; Cantu, Concepcion; Olsen, Randall J; Musser, James M; Kumaraswami, Muthiah

    2015-06-01

    Whole-genome sequencing analysis of ∼800 strains of group A Streptococcus (GAS) found that the gene encoding the multiple virulence gene regulator of GAS (mga) is highly polymorphic in serotype M59 strains but not in strains of other serotypes. To help understand the molecular mechanism of gene regulation by Mga and its contribution to GAS pathogenesis in serotype M59 GAS, we constructed an isogenic mga mutant strain. Transcriptome studies indicated a significant regulatory influence of Mga and altered metabolic capabilities conferred by Mga-regulated genes. We assessed the phosphorylation status of Mga in GAS cell lysates with Phos-tag gels. The results revealed that Mga is phosphorylated at histidines in vivo. Using phosphomimetic and nonphosphomimetic substitutions at conserved phosphoenolpyruvate:carbohydrate phosphotransferase regulation domain (PRD) histidines of Mga, we demonstrated that phosphorylation-mimicking aspartate replacements at H207 and H273 of PRD-1 and at H327 of PRD-2 are inhibitory to Mga-dependent gene expression. Conversely, non-phosphorylation-mimicking alanine substitutions at H273 and H327 relieved inhibition, and the mutant strains exhibited a wild-type phenotype. The opposing regulatory profiles observed for phosphorylation- and non-phosphorylation-mimicking substitutions at H273 extended to global gene regulation by Mga. Consistent with these observations, the H273D mutant strain attenuated GAS virulence, whereas the H273A strain exhibited a wild-type virulence phenotype in a mouse model of necrotizing fasciitis. Together, our results demonstrate phosphoregulation of Mga and its direct link to virulence in M59 GAS strains. These data also lay a foundation toward understanding how naturally occurring gain-of-function variations in mga, such as H201R, may confer an advantage to the pathogen and contribute to M59 GAS pathogenesis. PMID:25824840

  11. Phosphorylation Events in the Multiple Gene Regulator of Group A Streptococcus Significantly Influence Global Gene Expression and Virulence

    PubMed Central

    Sanson, Misu; Makthal, Nishanth; Gavagan, Maire; Cantu, Concepcion; Olsen, Randall J.; Musser, James M.

    2015-01-01

    Whole-genome sequencing analysis of ∼800 strains of group A Streptococcus (GAS) found that the gene encoding the multiple virulence gene regulator of GAS (mga) is highly polymorphic in serotype M59 strains but not in strains of other serotypes. To help understand the molecular mechanism of gene regulation by Mga and its contribution to GAS pathogenesis in serotype M59 GAS, we constructed an isogenic mga mutant strain. Transcriptome studies indicated a significant regulatory influence of Mga and altered metabolic capabilities conferred by Mga-regulated genes. We assessed the phosphorylation status of Mga in GAS cell lysates with Phos-tag gels. The results revealed that Mga is phosphorylated at histidines in vivo. Using phosphomimetic and nonphosphomimetic substitutions at conserved phosphoenolpyruvate:carbohydrate phosphotransferase regulation domain (PRD) histidines of Mga, we demonstrated that phosphorylation-mimicking aspartate replacements at H207 and H273 of PRD-1 and at H327 of PRD-2 are inhibitory to Mga-dependent gene expression. Conversely, non-phosphorylation-mimicking alanine substitutions at H273 and H327 relieved inhibition, and the mutant strains exhibited a wild-type phenotype. The opposing regulatory profiles observed for phosphorylation- and non-phosphorylation-mimicking substitutions at H273 extended to global gene regulation by Mga. Consistent with these observations, the H273D mutant strain attenuated GAS virulence, whereas the H273A strain exhibited a wild-type virulence phenotype in a mouse model of necrotizing fasciitis. Together, our results demonstrate phosphoregulation of Mga and its direct link to virulence in M59 GAS strains. These data also lay a foundation toward understanding how naturally occurring gain-of-function variations in mga, such as H201R, may confer an advantage to the pathogen and contribute to M59 GAS pathogenesis. PMID:25824840

  12. Molecular Determinants of Virulence and Stability of a Reporter-Expressing H5N1 Influenza A Virus

    PubMed Central

    Zhao, Dongming; Fukuyama, Satoshi; Yamada, Shinya; Lopes, Tiago J. S.; Maemura, Tadashi; Katsura, Hiroaki; Ozawa, Makoto; Watanabe, Shinji; Neumann, Gabriele

    2015-01-01

    ABSTRACT We previously reported that an H5N1 virus carrying the Venus reporter gene, which was inserted into the NS gene segment from the A/Puerto Rico/8/1934(H1N1) virus (Venus-H5N1 virus), became more lethal to mice, and the reporter gene was stably maintained after mouse adaptation compared with the wild-type Venus-H5N1 (WT-Venus-H5N1) virus. However, the basis for this difference in virulence and Venus stability was unclear. Here, we investigated the molecular determinants behind this virulence and reporter stability by comparing WT-Venus-H5N1 virus with a mouse-adapted Venus-H5N1 (MA-Venus-H5N1) virus. To determine the genetic basis for these differences, we used reverse genetics to generate a series of reassortants of these two viruses. We found that reassortants with PB2 from MA-Venus-H5N1 (MA-PB2), MA-PA, or MA-NS expressed Venus more stably than did WT-Venus-H5N1 virus. We also found that a single mutation in PB2 (V25A) or in PA (R443K) increased the virulence of the WT-Venus-H5N1 virus in mice and that the presence of both of these mutations substantially enhanced the pathogenicity of the virus. Our results suggest roles for PB2 and PA in the stable maintenance of a foreign protein as an NS1 fusion protein in influenza A virus. IMPORTANCE The ability to visualize influenza viruses has far-reaching benefits in influenza virus research. Previously, we reported that an H5N1 virus bearing the Venus reporter gene became more pathogenic to mice and that its reporter gene was more highly expressed and more stably maintained after mouse adaptation. Here, we investigated the molecular determinants behind this enhanced virulence and reporter stability. We found that mutations in PB2 (V25A) and PA (R443K) play crucial roles in the stable maintenance of a foreign protein as an NS1 fusion protein in influenza A virus and in the virulence of influenza virus in mice. Our findings further our knowledge of the pathogenicity of influenza virus in mammals and will help

  13. Coordination of Metabolism and Virulence Factors Expression of Extraintestinal Pathogenic Escherichia coli Purified from Blood Cultures of Patients with Sepsis.

    PubMed

    Pettersen, Veronika Kuchařová; Mosevoll, Knut Anders; Lindemann, Paul Christoffer; Wiker, Harald G

    2016-09-01

    One of the trademarks of extraintestinal pathogenic Escherichia coli is adaptation of metabolism and basic physiology to diverse host sites. However, little is known how this common human pathogen adapts to permit survival and growth in blood. We used label-free quantitative proteomics to characterize five E. coli strains purified from clinical blood cultures associated with sepsis and urinary tract infections. Further comparison of proteome profiles of the clinical strains and a reference uropathogenic E. coli strain 536 cultivated in blood culture and on two different solid media distinguished cellular features altered in response to the pathogenically relevant condition. The analysis covered nearly 60% of the strains predicted proteomes, and included quantitative description based on label-free intensity scores for 90% of the detected proteins. Statistical comparison of anaerobic and aerobic blood cultures revealed 32 differentially expressed proteins (1.5% of the shared proteins), mostly associated with acquisition and utilization of metal ions critical for anaerobic or aerobic respiration. Analysis of variance identified significantly altered amounts of 47 proteins shared by the strains (2.7%), including proteins involved in vitamin B6 metabolism and virulence. Although the proteomes derived from blood cultures were fairly similar for the investigated strains, quantitative proteomic comparison to the growth on solid media identified 200 proteins with substantially changed levels (11% of the shared proteins). Blood culture was characterized by up-regulation of anaerobic fermentative metabolism and multiple virulence traits, including cell motility and iron acquisition. In a response to the growth on solid media there were increased levels of proteins functional in aerobic respiration, catabolism of medium-specific carbon sources and protection against oxidative and osmotic stresses. These results demonstrate on the expressed proteome level that expression of

  14. The two-component system CpxR/A represses the expression of Salmonella virulence genes by affecting the stability of the transcriptional regulator HilD

    PubMed Central

    De la Cruz, Miguel A.; Pérez-Morales, Deyanira; Palacios, Irene J.; Fernández-Mora, Marcos; Calva, Edmundo; Bustamante, Víctor H.

    2015-01-01

    Salmonella enterica can cause intestinal or systemic infections in humans and animals mainly by the presence of pathogenicity islands SPI-1 and SPI-2, containing 39 and 44 genes, respectively. The AraC-like regulator HilD positively controls the expression of the SPI-1 genes, as well as many other Salmonella virulence genes including those located in SPI-2. A previous report indicates that the two-component system CpxR/A regulates the SPI-1 genes: the absence of the sensor kinase CpxA, but not the absence of its cognate response regulator CpxR, reduces their expression. The presence and absence of cell envelope stress activates kinase and phosphatase activities of CpxA, respectively, which in turn controls the level of phosphorylated CpxR (CpxR-P). In this work, we further define the mechanism for the CpxR/A-mediated regulation of SPI-1 genes. The negative effect exerted by the absence of CpxA on the expression of SPI-1 genes was counteracted by the absence of CpxR or by the absence of the two enzymes, AckA and Pta, which render acetyl-phosphate that phosphorylates CpxR. Furthermore, overexpression of the lipoprotein NlpE, which activates CpxA kinase activity on CpxR, or overexpression of CpxR, repressed the expression of SPI-1 genes. Thus, our results provide several lines of evidence strongly supporting that the absence of CpxA leads to the phosphorylation of CpxR via the AckA/Pta enzymes, which represses both the SPI-1 and SPI-2 genes. Additionally, we show that in the absence of the Lon protease, which degrades HilD, the CpxR-P-mediated repression of the SPI-1 genes is mostly lost; moreover, we demonstrate that CpxR-P negatively affects the stability of HilD and thus decreases the expression of HilD-target genes, such as hilD itself and hilA, located in SPI-1. Our data further expand the insight on the different regulatory pathways for gene expression involving CpxR/A and on the complex regulatory network governing virulence in Salmonella. PMID:26300871

  15. Silver-coated carbon nanotubes downregulate the expression of Pseudomonas aeruginosa virulence genes: a potential mechanism for their antimicrobial effect

    PubMed Central

    Dosunmu, Ejovwoke; Chaudhari, Atul A; Singh, Shree R; Dennis, Vida A; Pillai, Shreekumar R

    2015-01-01

    The antimicrobial activity of silver-coated carbon nanotubes (AgCNTs) and their potential mode of action against mucoid and nonmucoid strains of Pseudomonas aeruginosa was investigated in vitro. The results showed that AgCNTs exhibited antimicrobial activity against both strains with minimum inhibitory concentrations of approximately 8 µg/mL, indicating a high sensitivity of P. aeruginosa to AgCNTs. AgCNTs were also bactericidal against both strains at the same minimum inhibitory concentration. Scanning and transmission electron-microscopy studies further revealed that a majority of the cells treated with AgCNTs transformed from smooth rod-shape morphology to disintegrated cells with broken/damaged membranes, resulting in leakage of cytoplasmic contents to produce ghost cells. The molecular effects of AgCNTs on P. aeruginosa genes involved in virulence and pathogenicity, stress response, and efflux pumps were evaluated for changes in their expression. Quantitative real-time PCR (qRT-PCR) showed that after exposure to AgCNTs, the expression levels of the rpoS, rsmZ, and oprD genes were significantly downregulated in both strains of P. aeruginosa compared to the untreated samples. These results suggest that the mechanism of action of AgCNTs may be attributed to their effect on cell-membrane integrity, downregulation of virulence-gene expression, and induction of general and oxidative stress in P. aeruginosa. PMID:26346483

  16. Silver-coated carbon nanotubes downregulate the expression of Pseudomonas aeruginosa virulence genes: a potential mechanism for their antimicrobial effect.

    PubMed

    Dosunmu, Ejovwoke; Chaudhari, Atul A; Singh, Shree R; Dennis, Vida A; Pillai, Shreekumar R

    2015-01-01

    The antimicrobial activity of silver-coated carbon nanotubes (AgCNTs) and their potential mode of action against mucoid and nonmucoid strains of Pseudomonas aeruginosa was investigated in vitro. The results showed that AgCNTs exhibited antimicrobial activity against both strains with minimum inhibitory concentrations of approximately 8 µg/mL, indicating a high sensitivity of P. aeruginosa to AgCNTs. AgCNTs were also bactericidal against both strains at the same minimum inhibitory concentration. Scanning and transmission electron-microscopy studies further revealed that a majority of the cells treated with AgCNTs transformed from smooth rod-shape morphology to disintegrated cells with broken/damaged membranes, resulting in leakage of cytoplasmic contents to produce ghost cells. The molecular effects of AgCNTs on P. aeruginosa genes involved in virulence and pathogenicity, stress response, and efflux pumps were evaluated for changes in their expression. Quantitative real-time PCR (qRT-PCR) showed that after exposure to AgCNTs, the expression levels of the rpoS, rsmZ, and oprD genes were significantly downregulated in both strains of P. aeruginosa compared to the untreated samples. These results suggest that the mechanism of action of AgCNTs may be attributed to their effect on cell-membrane integrity, downregulation of virulence-gene expression, and induction of general and oxidative stress in P. aeruginosa. PMID:26346483

  17. Inhibitory Effects of Chrysanthemum boreale Essential Oil on Biofilm Formation and Virulence Factor Expression of Streptococcus mutans.

    PubMed

    Kim, Beom-Su; Park, Sun-Ju; Kim, Myung-Kon; Kim, Young-Hoi; Lee, Sang-Bong; Lee, Kwang-Hee; Choi, Na-Young; 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

  18. Inhibitory Effects of Chrysanthemum boreale Essential Oil on Biofilm Formation and Virulence Factor Expression of Streptococcus mutans

    PubMed Central

    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

  19. Effect Of Spaceflight On Microbial Gene Expression And Virulence: Preliminary Results From Microbe Payload Flown On-Board STS-115

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wilson, J. W.; HonerzuBentrup, K,; Schurr, M. J.; Buchanan, K.; Morici, L.; Hammond, T.; Allen, P.; Baker, C.; Ott, C. M.; Nelman-Gonzalez M.; Schurr, J. R.; Pierson, D. L.; Stodieck, L.; Hing, S.; Hammond, T.; Allen, P.; Baker, C.; Parra, M.; Dumars, P.; Stefanyshyn-Piper, H. M.; Nickerson, C. A.

    2007-01-01

    Human presence in space, whether permanent or temporary, is accompanied by the presence of microbes. However, the extent of microbial changes in response to spaceflight conditions and the corresponding changes to infectious disease risk is unclear. Previous studies have indicated that spaceflight weakens the immune system in humans and animals. In addition, preflight and in-flight monitoring of the International Space Station (ISS) and other spacecraft indicates the presence of opportunistic pathogens and the potential of obligate pathogens. Altered antibiotic resistance of microbes in flight has also been shown. As astronauts and cosmonauts live for longer periods in a closed environment, especially one using recycled water and air, there is an increased risk to crewmembers of infectious disease events occurring in-flight. Therefore, understanding how the space environment affects microorganisms and their disease potential is critically important for spaceflight missions and requires further study. The goal of this flight experiment, operationally called MICROBE, is to utilize three model microbial pathogens, Salmonella typhimurium, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, and Candida albicans to examine the global effects of spaceflight on microbial gene expression and virulence attributes. Specifically, the aims are (1) to perform microarray-mediated gene expression profiling of S. typhimurium, P. aeruginosa, and C. albicans, in response to spaceflight in comparison to ground controls and (2) to determine the effect of spaceflight on the virulence potential of these microorganisms immediately following their return from spaceflight using murine models. The model microorganisms were selected as they have been isolated from preflight or in-flight monitoring, represent different degrees of pathogenic behavior, are well characterized, and have sequenced genomes with available microarrays. In particular, extensive studies of S. typhimurium by the Principal Investigator, Dr. Nickerson

  20. A complex network regulates expression of eps and other virulence genes of Pseudomonas solanacearum.

    PubMed Central

    Huang, J; Carney, B F; Denny, T P; Weissinger, A K; Schell, M A

    1995-01-01

    We have discovered an unusual and complex regulatory network used by the phytopathogen Pseudomonas solanacearum to control transcription of eps, which encodes for production of its primary virulence factor, the exopolysaccharide EPS I. The major modules of this network were shown to be three separate signal transduction systems: PhcA, a LysR-type transcriptional regulator, an dual two-component regulatory systems, VsrA/VsrD and VsrB/VsrC. Using lacZ fusions and RNA analysis, we found that both PhcA and VsrA/VsrD control transcription of another network component, xpsR, which in turn acts in conjunction with vsrB/vsrC to increase transcription of the eps promoter by > 25-fold. Moreover, gel shift DNA binding assays showed that PhcA specifically binds to the xpsR promoter region. Thus, the unique XpsR protein interconnects the three signal transduction systems, forming a network for convergent control of EPS I in simultaneous response to multiple environmental inputs. In addition, we demonstrate that each individual signaling system of the network also acts independently to divergently regulate other unique sets of virulence factors. The purpose of this complex network may be to allow this phytopathogen to both coordinately or independently regulate diverse virulence factors in order to cope with the dynamic situations and conditions encountered during interactions with plants. PMID:7868600

  1. Antimicrobial Effects of Blueberry, Raspberry, and Strawberry Aqueous Extracts and their Effects on Virulence Gene Expression in Vibrio cholerae.

    PubMed

    Khalifa, Hazim O; Kamimoto, Maki; Shimamoto, Toshi; Shimamoto, Tadashi

    2015-11-01

    The antimicrobial effects of aqueous extracts of blueberry, raspberry, and strawberry on 13 pathogenic bacteria were evaluated. The minimum inhibitory concentrations and minimum bactericidal concentrations of the extracts were determined before and after neutralization to pH 7.03 ± 0.15. Both Gram-positive and Gram-negative pathogenic bacteria were selectively inhibited by the non-neutralized berries. Blueberry was the best inhibitor, and Vibrio and Listeria were the most sensitive bacteria. After neutralization, blueberry affected only Vibrio and Listeria, whereas the antimicrobial activities of raspberry and strawberry were abolished. The total contents of phenolics, flavonoids, and proanthocyanidins in the extracts were measured with colorimetric methods and were highest in strawberry, followed by raspberry, and then blueberry. We also studied the effects of sub-bactericidal concentrations of the three berry extracts on virulence gene expression in Vibrio cholerae. Real-time quantitative reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction revealed that the three berry extracts effectively repressed the transcription of the tcpA gene. Raspberry also repressed the transcription of the ctxA gene, whereas blueberry and strawberry did not. However, the three berry extracts did not affect the transcription of toxT. These results suggest that the three berry extracts exert potent antimicrobial effects and inhibit the expression of the virulence factors of V. cholerae. PMID:26292998

  2. Pyrokinin β-Neuropeptide Affects Necrophoretic Behavior in Fire Ants (S. invicta), and Expression of β-NP in a Mycoinsecticide Increases Its Virulence

    PubMed Central

    Fan, Yanhua; Pereira, Roberto M.; Kilic, Engin; Casella, George; Keyhani, Nemat O.

    2012-01-01

    Fire ants are one of the world's most damaging invasive pests, with few means for their effective control. Although ecologically friendly alternatives to chemical pesticides such as the insecticidal fungus Beauveria bassiana have been suggested for the control of fire ant populations, their use has been limited due to the low virulence of the fungus and the length of time it takes to kill its target. We present a means of increasing the virulence of the fungal agent by expressing a fire ant neuropeptide. Expression of the fire ant (Solenopsis invicta) pyrokinin β -neuropeptide (β-NP) by B. bassiana increased fungal virulence six-fold towards fire ants, decreased the LT50, but did not affect virulence towards the lepidopteran, Galleria mellonella. Intriguingly, ants killed by the β-NP expressing fungus were disrupted in the removal of dead colony members, i.e. necrophoretic behavior. Furthermore, synthetic C-terminal amidated β-NP but not the non-amidated peptide had a dramatic effect on necrophoretic behavior. These data link chemical sensing of a specific peptide to a complex social behavior. Our results also confirm a new approach to insect control in which expression of host molecules in an insect pathogen can by exploited for target specific augmentation of virulence. The minimization of the development of potential insect resistance by our approach is discussed. PMID:22238569

  3. Influence of Tigecycline on Expression of Virulence Factors in Biofilm-Associated Cells of Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus aureus▿

    PubMed Central

    Smith, Karen; Gould, Katherine A.; Ramage, Gordon; Gemmell, Curtis G.; Hinds, Jason; Lang, Sue

    2010-01-01

    Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) infections are complicated by the ability of the organism to grow in surface-adhered biofilms on a multitude of abiotic and biological surfaces. These multicellular communities are notoriously difficult to eradicate with antimicrobial therapy. Cells within the biofilm may be exposed to a sublethal concentration of the antimicrobial due to the metabolic and phenotypic diversity of the biofilm-associated cells or the protection offered by the biofilm structure. In the present study, the influence of a sublethal concentration of tigecycline on biofilms formed by an epidemic MRSA-16 isolate was investigated by transcriptome analysis. In the presence of the drug, 309 genes were upregulated and 213 genes were downregulated by more than twofold in comparison to the levels of gene regulation detected for the controls not grown in the presence of the drug. Microarray data were validated by real-time reverse transcription-PCR and phenotypic assays. Tigecycline altered the expression of a number of genes encoding proteins considered to be crucial for the virulence of S. aureus. These included the reduced expression of icaC, which is involved in polysaccharide intercellular adhesin production and biofilm development; the upregulation of fnbA, clfB, and cna, which encode adhesins which attach to human proteins; and the downregulation of the cap genes, which mediate the synthesis of the capsule polysaccharide. The expression of tst, which encodes toxic shock syndrome toxin 1 (TSST-1), was also significantly reduced; and an assay performed to quantify TSST-1 showed that the level of toxin production by cells treated with tigecycline decreased by 10-fold (P < 0.001) compared to the level of production by untreated control cells. This study suggests that tigecycline may reduce the expression of important virulence factors in S. aureus and supports further investigation to determine whether it could be a useful adjunct to therapy

  4. Altered virulence potential of Salmonella Enteritidis cultured in different foods: A cumulative effect of differential gene expression and immunomodulation.

    PubMed

    Jaiswal, Sangeeta; Sahoo, Prakash Kumar; Ryan, Daniel; Das, Jugal Kishore; Chakraborty, Eesha; Mohakud, Nirmal Kumar; Suar, Mrutyunjay

    2016-08-01

    Salmonella enterica serovars Enteritidis (S. Enteritidis) is one of the most common causes of food borne illness. Bacterial growth environment plays an important role in regulating gene expression thereby affecting the virulence profile of the bacteria. Different foods present diverse growth conditions which may affect the pathogenic potential of the bacteria. In the present study, the effect of food environments on the pathogenic potential of S. Enteritidis has been evaluated. S. Enteritidis was grown in different foods e.g. egg white, peanut butter and milk, and virulent phenotypes were compared to those grown in Luria Bertani broth. In-vivo experiments in C57BL/6 mice revealed S. Enteritidis grown in egg white did not induce significant (p<0.001) production of proinflammatory cytokines in mice and were unable to cause colitis despite efficient colonization in cecum, mesenteric lymph node, spleen and liver. Further studies revealed that bacteria grown in LB activated MAP Kinase and NFκB pathways efficiently, while those grown in egg white poorly activated the above pathways which can account for the decreased production of proinflammatory cytokines. qRT PCR analysis revealed SPI-1 effectors were downregulated in bacteria grown in egg white. Interestingly, bacteria grown in egg white showed reversal of phenotype upon change in growth media to LB. Additionally, bacteria grown in milk and peanut butter showed different degrees of virulence in mice as compared to those grown in LB media. Thus, the present study demonstrates that, S. Enteritidis grown in egg white colonizes systemic sites without causing colitis in a mouse model, while bacteria grown in milk and peanut butter show different pathogenicity profiles suggesting that food environments significantly affect the pathogenicity of S. Enteritidis. PMID:27132148

  5. Lineage associated expression of virulence traits in bovine-adapted Staphylococcus aureus.

    PubMed

    Budd, Kathleen E; Mitchell, Jennifer; Keane, Orla M

    2016-06-30

    Bovine mastitis is the most costly disease to the dairy industry worldwide with Staphylococcus aureus commonly associated with intramammary infections that are persistent and refractory to treatment. The strains of S. aureus that cause mastitis predominantly belong to a number of well-described bovine-adapted lineages. The objective of this study was to determine if a variety of potential virulence traits were associated with lineage. Bovine-adapted S. aureus isolates (n=120), belonging to lineages CC97, CC151 and ST136, were tested for their ability to adhere to and internalise within cultured bovine mammary epithelial cells (bMEC), to bind bovine fibronectin, to form a biofilm in TSB, TSB+1% glucose and TSB+4% NaCl, and to induce an immune response from bMEC. There were no significant differences between the lineages in ability to adhere to or internalise within bMEC although there were significant differences between individual isolates. For lineages CC97 and ST136, mammalian cell adherence was correlated with the ability to bind bovine fibronectin, however isolates from CC151 could not bind bovine fibronectin in vitro, but adhered to bMEC in a fibronectin-independent manner. There were significant differences between the lineages in ability to form a biofilm in all three growth media with ST136 forming the strongest biofilm while CC151 formed the weakest biofilm. Lineages also differed in their ability to elicit an immune response from bMEC with CC97 eliciting a stronger immune response than CC151 and ST136. These data indicate the potential for both lineage and strain-specific virulence and a strain-specific response to infection in vivo and caution against extrapolating an effect from a single strain of S. aureus to draw conclusions regarding virulence or the host response to infection in unrelated lineages. PMID:27259823

  6. The Staphylococcus aureus Global Regulator MgrA Modulates Clumping and Virulence by Controlling Surface Protein Expression

    PubMed Central

    Crosby, Heidi A.; Schlievert, Patrick M.; Merriman, Joseph A.; King, Jessica M.; Salgado-Pabón, Wilmara; Horswill, Alexander R.

    2016-01-01

    Staphylococcus aureus is a human commensal and opportunistic pathogen that causes devastating infections in a wide range of locations within the body. One of the defining characteristics of S. aureus is its ability to form clumps in the presence of soluble fibrinogen, which likely has a protective benefit and facilitates adhesion to host tissue. We have previously shown that the ArlRS two-component regulatory system controls clumping, in part by repressing production of the large surface protein Ebh. In this work we show that ArlRS does not directly regulate Ebh, but instead ArlRS activates expression of the global regulator MgrA. Strains lacking mgrA fail to clump in the presence of fibrinogen, and clumping can be restored to an arlRS mutant by overexpressing either arlRS or mgrA, indicating that ArlRS and MgrA constitute a regulatory pathway. We used RNA-seq to show that MgrA represses ebh, as well as seven cell wall-associated proteins (SraP, Spa, FnbB, SasG, SasC, FmtB, and SdrD). EMSA analysis showed that MgrA directly represses expression of ebh and sraP. Clumping can be restored to an mgrA mutant by deleting the genes for Ebh, SraP and SasG, suggesting that increased expression of these proteins blocks clumping by steric hindrance. We show that mgrA mutants are less virulent in a rabbit model of endocarditis, and virulence can be partially restored by deleting the genes for the surface proteins ebh, sraP, and sasG. While mgrA mutants are unable to clump, they are known to have enhanced biofilm capacity. We demonstrate that this increase in biofilm formation is partially due to up-regulation of SasG, a surface protein known to promote intercellular interactions. These results confirm that ArlRS and MgrA constitute a regulatory cascade, and that they control expression of a number of genes important for virulence, including those for eight large surface proteins. PMID:27144398

  7. Governance.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Academe, 1989

    1989-01-01

    Over the last 75 years the AAUP has made progress in specifying its standards of governance and in reconciling traditional governance with collective bargaining. Excerpts from the "Joint Statement on Government of Colleges and Universities" and the "Statement on Academic Government for Institutions Engaged in Collective Bargaining" are presented.…

  8. The RNA Chaperone Hfq Is Essential for Virulence and Modulates the Expression of Four Adhesins in Yersinia enterocolitica

    PubMed Central

    Kakoschke, Tamara Katharina; Kakoschke, Sara Carina; Zeuzem, Catharina; Bouabe, Hicham; Adler, Kristin; Heesemann, Jürgen; Rossier, Ombeline

    2016-01-01

    In Enterobacteriaceae, the RNA chaperone Hfq mediates the interaction of small RNAs with target mRNAs, thereby modulating transcript stability and translation. This post-transcriptional control helps bacteria adapt quickly to changing environmental conditions. Our previous mutational analysis showed that Hfq is involved in metabolism and stress survival in the enteropathogen Yersinia enterocolitica. In this study we demonstrate that Hfq is essential for virulence in mice and influences production of surface pathogenicity factors, in particular lipopolysaccharide and adhesins mediating interaction with host tissue. Hfq inhibited the production of Ail, the Ail-like protein OmpX and the MyfA pilin post-transcriptionally. In contrast Hfq promoted production of two major autotransporter adhesins YadA and InvA. While protein secretion in vitro was not affected, hfq mutants exhibited decreased protein translocation by the type III secretion system into host cells, consistent with decreased production of YadA and InvA. The influence of Hfq on YadA resulted from a complex interplay of transcriptional, post-transcriptional and likely post-translational effects. Hfq regulated invA by modulating the expression of the transcriptional regulators rovA, phoP and ompR. Therefore, Hfq is a global coordinator of surface virulence determinants in Y. enterocolitica suggesting that it constitutes an attractive target for developing new antimicrobial strategies. PMID:27387855

  9. Increased virulence using engineered protease-chitin binding domain hybrid expressed in the entomopathogenic fungus Beauveria bassiana.

    PubMed

    Fan, Yanhua; Pei, Xiaoqiong; Guo, Shujuan; Zhang, Yongjun; Luo, Zhibing; Liao, Xinggang; Pei, Yan

    2010-12-01

    Insect cuticles consist mainly of interlinked networks of proteins and the highly insoluble polysaccharide, chitin. Entomopathogenic fungi, such as Beauveria bassiana, invade insects by direct penetration of host cuticles via the action of diverse hydrolases including proteases and chitinases coupled to mechanical pressure. In order to better target cuticle protein-chitin structures and accelerate penetration speed, a hybrid protease (CDEP-BmChBD) was constructed by fusion of a chitin binding domain BmChBD from Bombyx mori chitinase to the C-terminal of CDEP-1, a subtilisin-like protease from B. bassiana. Compared to the wild-type, the hybrid protease was able to bind chitin and released greater amounts of peptides/proteins from insect cuticles. The insecticidal activity of B. bassiana was enhanced by including proteases, CDEP-1 or CDEP:BmChBD produced in Pichia pastoris, as an additive, however, the augment effect of CDEP:BmChBD was significantly higher than that of CDEP-1. Expression of the hybrid protease in B. bassiana also significantly increased fungal virulence compared to wild-type and strains overexpressing the native protease. These results demonstrate that rational design virulence factor is a potential strategy for strain improvement by genetic engineering. PMID:20674735

  10. Evaluation of Virulence Gene Expression Patterns in Acinetobacter baumannii Using Quantitative Real-Time Polymerase Chain Reaction Array.

    PubMed

    Lannan, Ford M; O'conor, Daniel K; Broderick, Joseph C; Tate, Jamison F; Scoggin, Jacob T; Moran, Nicholas A; Husson, Christopher M; Hegeman, Erik M; Ogrydziak, Cole E; Singh, Sneha A; Vafides, Andrew G; Brinkley, Carl C; Goodin, Jeremy L

    2016-09-01

    According to the Centers for Disease Control's recently devised National Strategy for Combating Antibiotic-Resistant Bacteria, Acinetobacter baumannii is a "serious" threat level pathogen. A. baumannii's notoriety stems from the fact that a large number of modern strains are multidrug resistant and persist in the hospital setting, thus causing numerous deaths per year. It is imperative that research focus on a more fundamental understanding of the factors responsible for the success of A. baumannii. Toward this end, our group investigated virulence gene expression patterns in a recently characterized wound isolate, AB5075, using quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction array. Notably, several genes showed statistically significant upregulation at 37°C compared to 25°C; MviM, Wbbj, CarO, and certain genes of the Bas, Bar, and Csu operons. Additionally, we found that in vitro biofilm formation by Csu transposon insertion mutant strains is attenuated. These findings validate previous reports that suggest a link between the Csu operon and biofilm formation. More importantly, our results demonstrate a successful method for evaluating the significance of previously identified virulence factors in a modern and clinically relevant strain of A. baumannii, thereby providing a path toward a more fundamental understanding of the pathogenicity of A. baumannii. PMID:27612361

  11. The RNA Chaperone Hfq Is Essential for Virulence and Modulates the Expression of Four Adhesins in Yersinia enterocolitica.

    PubMed

    Kakoschke, Tamara Katharina; Kakoschke, Sara Carina; Zeuzem, Catharina; Bouabe, Hicham; Adler, Kristin; Heesemann, Jürgen; Rossier, Ombeline

    2016-01-01

    In Enterobacteriaceae, the RNA chaperone Hfq mediates the interaction of small RNAs with target mRNAs, thereby modulating transcript stability and translation. This post-transcriptional control helps bacteria adapt quickly to changing environmental conditions. Our previous mutational analysis showed that Hfq is involved in metabolism and stress survival in the enteropathogen Yersinia enterocolitica. In this study we demonstrate that Hfq is essential for virulence in mice and influences production of surface pathogenicity factors, in particular lipopolysaccharide and adhesins mediating interaction with host tissue. Hfq inhibited the production of Ail, the Ail-like protein OmpX and the MyfA pilin post-transcriptionally. In contrast Hfq promoted production of two major autotransporter adhesins YadA and InvA. While protein secretion in vitro was not affected, hfq mutants exhibited decreased protein translocation by the type III secretion system into host cells, consistent with decreased production of YadA and InvA. The influence of Hfq on YadA resulted from a complex interplay of transcriptional, post-transcriptional and likely post-translational effects. Hfq regulated invA by modulating the expression of the transcriptional regulators rovA, phoP and ompR. Therefore, Hfq is a global coordinator of surface virulence determinants in Y. enterocolitica suggesting that it constitutes an attractive target for developing new antimicrobial strategies. PMID:27387855

  12. Decreased in vivo virulence and altered gene expression by a Brucella melitensis light-sensing histidine kinase mutant

    PubMed Central

    Gourley, Christopher R.; Petersen, Erik; Harms, Jerome; Splitter, Gary

    2015-01-01

    Brucella species utilize diverse virulence factors. Previously, Brucella abortus light-sensing histidine kinase was identified as important for cellular infection. Here, we demonstrate that a Brucella melitensisLOV-HK (BM-LOV-HK) mutant strain has strikingly different gene expression than wild type. General stress response genes including the alternative sigma factor rpoE1 and its anti-anti-sigma factor phyR were downregulated, while flagellar, quorum sensing (QS), and type IV secretion system genes were upregulated in the ΔBM-LOV-HK strain vs. wild type. Contextually, expression results agree with other studies of transcriptional regulators involving ΔrpoE1, ΔphyR, ΔvjbR, and ΔblxR (ΔbabR) Brucella strains. Additionally, deletion of BM-LOV-HK decreases virulence in mice. During C57BL/6 mouse infection, the ΔBM-LOV-HK strain had 2 logs less CFUs in the spleen 3 days postinfection, but similar levels 6 days post infection compared to wild type. Infection of IRF-1−/− mice more specifically define ΔBM-LOV-HK strain attenuation with fewer bacteria in spleens and significantly increased survival of mutant vs. wild-type infected IRF-1−/− mice. Upregulation of flagella, QS, and VirB genes, along with downregulation of rpoE1 and related sigma factor, rpoH2 (BMEI0280) suggest that BM-LOV-HK modulates both QS and general stress response regulatory components to control Brucella gene expression on a global level. PMID:25132657

  13. A σE-Mediated Temperature Gauge Controls a Switch from LuxR-Mediated Virulence Gene Expression to Thermal Stress Adaptation in Vibrio alginolyticus.

    PubMed

    Gu, Dan; Guo, Min; Yang, Minjun; Zhang, Yuanxing; Zhou, Xiaohui; Wang, Qiyao

    2016-06-01

    In vibrios, the expression of virulence factors is often controlled by LuxR, the master quorum-sensing regulator. Here, we investigate the interplay between LuxR and σE, an alternative sigma factor, during the control of virulence-related gene expression and adaptations to temperature elevations in the zoonotic pathogen Vibrio alginolyticus. An rpoE null V. alginolyticus mutant was unable to adapt to various stresses and was survival-deficient in fish. In wild type V. alginolyticus, the expression of LuxR-regulated virulence factors increased as the temperature was increased from 22°C to 37°C, but mutants lacking σE did not respond to temperature, indicating that σE is critical for the temperature-dependent upregulation of virulence genes. Further analyses revealed that σE binds directly to -10 and -35 elements in the luxR promoter that drive its transcription. ChIP assays showed that σE binds to the promoter regions of luxR, rpoH and rpoE at high temperatures (e.g., 30°C and 37°C). However, at higher temperatures (42°C) that induce thermal stress, σE binding to the luxR promoter decreased, while its binding to the rpoH and rpoE promoters was unchanged. Thus, the temperature-dependent binding of σE to distinct promoters appears to underlie a σE-controlled switch between the expression of virulence genes and adaptation to thermal stress. This study illustrates how a conserved temperature response mechanism integrates into quorum-sensing circuits to regulate both virulence and stress adaptation. PMID:27253371

  14. A σE-Mediated Temperature Gauge Controls a Switch from LuxR-Mediated Virulence Gene Expression to Thermal Stress Adaptation in Vibrio alginolyticus

    PubMed Central

    Gu, Dan; Guo, Min; Yang, Minjun; Zhang, Yuanxing; Zhou, Xiaohui; Wang, Qiyao

    2016-01-01

    In vibrios, the expression of virulence factors is often controlled by LuxR, the master quorum-sensing regulator. Here, we investigate the interplay between LuxR and σE, an alternative sigma factor, during the control of virulence-related gene expression and adaptations to temperature elevations in the zoonotic pathogen Vibrio alginolyticus. An rpoE null V. alginolyticus mutant was unable to adapt to various stresses and was survival-deficient in fish. In wild type V. alginolyticus, the expression of LuxR-regulated virulence factors increased as the temperature was increased from 22°C to 37°C, but mutants lacking σE did not respond to temperature, indicating that σE is critical for the temperature-dependent upregulation of virulence genes. Further analyses revealed that σE binds directly to -10 and -35 elements in the luxR promoter that drive its transcription. ChIP assays showed that σE binds to the promoter regions of luxR, rpoH and rpoE at high temperatures (e.g., 30°C and 37°C). However, at higher temperatures (42°C) that induce thermal stress, σE binding to the luxR promoter decreased, while its binding to the rpoH and rpoE promoters was unchanged. Thus, the temperature-dependent binding of σE to distinct promoters appears to underlie a σE-controlled switch between the expression of virulence genes and adaptation to thermal stress. This study illustrates how a conserved temperature response mechanism integrates into quorum-sensing circuits to regulate both virulence and stress adaptation. PMID:27253371

  15. Mutagenesis of Bordetella pertussis with transposon Tn5tac1: conditional expression of virulence-associated genes.

    PubMed Central

    Cookson, B T; Berg, D E; Goldman, W E

    1990-01-01

    The Tn5tac1 transposon contains a strong outward-facing promoter, Ptac, a lacI repressor gene, and a selectable Kanr gene. Transcription from Ptac is repressed by the lacI protein unless an inducer (isopropyl-beta-D-thiogalactopyranoside [IPTG]) is present. Thus, Tn5tac1 generates insertion mutations in Escherichia coli with conditional phenotypes because it is polar on distal gene expression when IPTG is absent and directs transcription of these genes when the inducer is present. To test the usefulness of Tn5tac1 in Bordetella pertussis, a nonenteric gram-negative bacterial pathogen, we chose the bifunctional adenylate cyclase-hemolysin determinant as an easily scored marker to monitor insertional mutagenesis. Tn5tac1 delivered to B. pertussis on conjugal suicide plasmids resulted in Kanr exconjugants at a frequency of 10(-3) per donor cell, and nonhemolytic (Hly-) mutants were found among the Kanr colonies at a frequency of about 1%. Of eight independent Kanr Hly- mutants, two were conditional and exhibited an Hly+ phenotype only in the presence of IPTG. Using a new quantitative assay for adenylate cyclase based on high-pressure liquid chromatography, we found that enzymatic activity in these two strains was specifically induced at least 500-fold in a dose-dependent fashion over the range of 0 to 125 microM IPTG. These data show that Ptac serves as a promoter, lacI is expressed and is functional, and IPTG can induce Ptac transcription in B. pertussis. Adenylate cyclase expression in whole cells, culture supernatants, and cell extracts from these strains depended upon IPTG, suggesting that the insertions do not merely alter secretion of adenylate cyclase-hemolysin. Other virulence determinants under control of the vir locus are expressed normally, implying that these Tn5tac1 insertions specifically regulate adenylate cyclase-hemolysin expression. We conclude that Tn5tac1 insertion mutations permit sensitive, exogenous control over the expression of genes of

  16. Virulence control in group A Streptococcus by a two-component gene regulatory system: global expression profiling and in vivo infection modeling.

    PubMed

    Graham, Morag R; Smoot, Laura M; Migliaccio, Cristi A Lux; Virtaneva, Kimmo; Sturdevant, Daniel E; Porcella, Stephen F; Federle, Michael J; Adams, Gerald J; Scott, June R; Musser, James M

    2002-10-15

    Two-component gene regulatory systems composed of a membrane-bound sensor and cytoplasmic response regulator are important mechanisms used by bacteria to sense and respond to environmental stimuli. Group A Streptococcus, the causative agent of mild infections and life-threatening invasive diseases, produces many virulence factors that promote survival in humans. A two-component regulatory system, designated covRS (cov, control of virulence; csrRS), negatively controls expression of five proven or putative virulence factors (capsule, cysteine protease, streptokinase, streptolysin S, and streptodornase). Inactivation of covRS results in enhanced virulence in mouse models of invasive disease. Using DNA microarrays and quantitative RT-PCR, we found that CovR influences transcription of 15% (n = 271) of all chromosomal genes, including many that encode surface and secreted proteins mediating host-pathogen interactions. CovR also plays a central role in gene regulatory networks by influencing expression of genes encoding transcriptional regulators, including other two-component systems. Differential transcription of genes influenced by covR also was identified in mouse soft-tissue infection. This analysis provides a genome-scale overview of a virulence gene network in an important human pathogen and adds insight into the molecular mechanisms used by group A Streptococcus to interact with the host, promote survival, and cause disease. PMID:12370433

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

    PubMed

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

    2012-08-01

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

  18. Novel Antibiofilm Chemotherapy Targets Exopolysaccharide Synthesis and Stress Tolerance in Streptococcus mutans To Modulate Virulence Expression In Vivo

    PubMed Central

    Falsetta, Megan L.; Klein, Marlise I.; Lemos, José A.; Silva, Bruno B.; Agidi, Senyo; Scott-Anne, Kathy K.

    2012-01-01

    Fluoride is the mainstay of dental caries prevention, and yet current applications offer incomplete protection and may not effectively address the infectious character of the disease. Therefore, we evaluated the effectiveness of a novel combination therapy (CT; 2 mM myricetin, 4 mM tt-farnesol, 250 ppm of fluoride) that supplements fluoride with naturally occurring, food-derived, antibiofilm compounds. Treatment regimens simulating those experienced clinically (twice daily for ≤60 s) were used both in vitro over a saliva-coated hydroxyapatite biofilm model and in vivo with a rodent model of dental caries. The effectiveness of CT was evaluated based on the incidence and severity of carious lesions (compared to fluoride or vehicle control). We found that CT was superior to fluoride (positive control, P < 0.05); topical applications dramatically reduced caries development in Sprague-Dawley rats, all without altering the Streptococcus mutans or total populations within the plaque. We subsequently identified the underlying mechanisms through which applications of CT modulate biofilm virulence. CT targets expression of key Streptococcus mutans genes during biofilm formation in vitro and in vivo. These are associated with exopolysaccharide matrix synthesis (gtfB) and the ability to tolerate exogenous stress (e.g., sloA), which are essential for cariogenic biofilm assembly. We also identified a unique gene (SMU.940) that was severely repressed and may represent a potentially novel target; its inactivation disrupted exopolysaccharide accumulation and matrix development. Altogether, CT may be clinically more effective than current anticaries modalities, targeting expression of bacterial virulence associated with pathogenesis of the disease. These observations may have relevance for development of enhanced therapies against other biofilm-dependent infections. PMID:22985885

  19. Novel antibiofilm chemotherapy targets exopolysaccharide synthesis and stress tolerance in Streptococcus mutans to modulate virulence expression in vivo.

    PubMed

    Falsetta, Megan L; Klein, Marlise I; Lemos, José A; Silva, Bruno B; Agidi, Senyo; Scott-Anne, Kathy K; Koo, Hyun

    2012-12-01

    Fluoride is the mainstay of dental caries prevention, and yet current applications offer incomplete protection and may not effectively address the infectious character of the disease. Therefore, we evaluated the effectiveness of a novel combination therapy (CT; 2 mM myricetin, 4 mM tt-farnesol, 250 ppm of fluoride) that supplements fluoride with naturally occurring, food-derived, antibiofilm compounds. Treatment regimens simulating those experienced clinically (twice daily for ≤60 s) were used both in vitro over a saliva-coated hydroxyapatite biofilm model and in vivo with a rodent model of dental caries. The effectiveness of CT was evaluated based on the incidence and severity of carious lesions (compared to fluoride or vehicle control). We found that CT was superior to fluoride (positive control, P < 0.05); topical applications dramatically reduced caries development in Sprague-Dawley rats, all without altering the Streptococcus mutans or total populations within the plaque. We subsequently identified the underlying mechanisms through which applications of CT modulate biofilm virulence. CT targets expression of key Streptococcus mutans genes during biofilm formation in vitro and in vivo. These are associated with exopolysaccharide matrix synthesis (gtfB) and the ability to tolerate exogenous stress (e.g., sloA), which are essential for cariogenic biofilm assembly. We also identified a unique gene (SMU.940) that was severely repressed and may represent a potentially novel target; its inactivation disrupted exopolysaccharide accumulation and matrix development. Altogether, CT may be clinically more effective than current anticaries modalities, targeting expression of bacterial virulence associated with pathogenesis of the disease. These observations may have relevance for development of enhanced therapies against other biofilm-dependent infections. PMID:22985885

  20. An N-Terminal Signal Peptide Of Vfr Protein Negatively Influences RopB-Dependent SpeB Expression and Attenuates Virulence in Streptococcus pyogenes

    PubMed Central

    Shelburne, Samuel A.; Olsen, Randall J.; Makthal, Nishanth; Brown, Nicholas G.; Sahasrabhojane, Pranoti; Watkins, Ebru M.; Palzkill, Timothy; Musser, James M.; Kumaraswami, Muthiah

    2015-01-01

    SUMMARY Streptococcal pyrogenic exotoxin B (SpeB) is an extracellular cysteine protease that is a critical virulence factor made by the major human pathogen group A Streptococcus (GAS). speB expression is dependent on the regulator of proteinase B (RopB) and is upregulated with increasing cell density and during infection. Because computer modeling suggested significant structural similarity between RopB and peptide-sensing regulatory proteins made by other Gram-positive bacteria, we hypothesized that speB expression is influenced by RopB-peptide interactions. Inactivation of the gene (vfr) encoding the virulence factor related (Vfr) protein resulted in increased speB transcript level during the exponential growth phase, whereas provision of only the amino-terminal region of Vfr comprising the secretion signal sequence in trans restored a wild-type speB expression profile. Addition of the culture supernatant from a Vfr signal peptide-expressing GAS strain restored wild-type speB transcript level to a vfr-inactivated isogenic mutant strain. A distinct peptide in the Vfr secretion signal sequence specifically bound to recombinant RopB. Finally, overexpression of the Vfr secretion signal sequence significantly decreased speB transcript level and attenuated GAS virulence in two mouse models of invasive infection. Taken together, these data delineate a previously unknown small peptide-mediated regulatory system that controls GAS virulence factor production. PMID:22040048

  1. CpsR, a GntR family regulator, transcriptionally regulates capsular polysaccharide biosynthesis and governs bacterial virulence in Streptococcus pneumoniae

    PubMed Central

    Wu, Kaifeng; Xu, Hongmei; Zheng, Yuqiang; Wang, Libin; Zhang, Xuemei; Yin, Yibing

    2016-01-01

    Transcriptional regulation of capsule expression is critical for pneumococcal transition from carriage to infection, yet the underlying mechanism remains incompletely understood. Here, we describe the regulation of capsular polysaccharide, one of the most important pneumococcal virulence factor by a GntR family regulator, CpsR. Electrophoretic mobility-shift assays have shown the direct interaction between CpsR and the cps promoter (cpsp), and their interaction could be competitively interfered by glucose. DNase I footprinting assays localized the binding site to a region −146 to −114 base pairs relative to the transcriptional start site of the cps locus in S. pneumoniae D39. We found that CpsR negatively controlled the transcription of the cps locus and hence CPS production, which was confirmed by fine-tuning expression of CpsR in a ΔcpsR complemented strain. Increased expression of CpsR in complemented strain led to a decreased resistance to the whole-blood-mediated killing, suggesting a protective role for CpsR-cpsp interaction in the establishment of invasive infection. Finally, animal experiments showed that CpsR-cpsp interaction was necessary for both pneumococcal colonization and invasive infection. Taken together, our results provide a thorough insight into the regulation of capsule production mediated by CpsR and its important roles in pneumococcal pathogenesis. PMID:27386955

  2. Expression of Xylella fastidiosa RpfF in citrus disrupts signaling in Xanthomonas citri subsp. citri and thereby its virulence.

    PubMed

    Caserta, R; Picchi, S C; Takita, M A; Tomaz, J P; Pereira, W E L; Machado, M A; Ionescu, M; Lindow, S; De Souza, A A

    2014-11-01

    Xylella fastidiosa and Xanthomonas citri subsp. citri, that cause citrus variegated chlorosis (CVC) and citrus canker diseases, respectively, utilize diffusible signal factor (DSF) for quorum sensing. DSF, produced by RpfF, are similar fatty acids in both organisms, although a different set of genes is regulated by DSF in each species. Because of this similarity, Xylella fastidiosa DSF might be recognized and affect the biology of Xanthomonas citri. Therefore, transgenic Citrus sinensis and Carrizo citrange plants overexpressing the Xylella fastidiosa rpfF were inoculated with Xanthomonas citri and changes in symptoms of citrus canker were observed. X. citri biofilms formed only at wound sites on transgenic leaves and were thicker; however, bacteria were unable to break through the tissue and form pustules elsewhere. Although abundant growth of X. citri occurred at wound sites on inoculated transgenic leaves, little growth was observed on unwounded tissue. Genes in the DFS-responsive core in X. citri were downregulated in bacteria isolated from transgenic leaves. DSF-dependent expression of engA was suppressed in cells exposed to xylem sap from transgenic plants. Thus, altered symptom development appears to be due to reduced expression of virulence genes because of the presence of antagonists of DSF signaling in X. citri in rpfF-expressing plants. PMID:25099341

  3. Fur is required for the activation of virulence gene expression through the induction of the sae regulatory system in Staphylococcus aureus

    PubMed Central

    Johnson, Miranda; Sengupta, Mrittika; Purves, Joanne; Tarrant, Emma; Williams, Peter H.; Cockayne, Alan; Muthaiyan, Arunachalam; Stephenson, Robert; Ledala, Nagender; Wilkinson, Brian J.; Jayaswal, Radheshyam K.; Morrissey, Julie A.

    2010-01-01

    Our previous studies showed that both Sae and Fur are required for the induction of eap and emp expression in low iron. In this study, we show that expression of sae is also iron-regulated, as sae expression is activated by Fur in low iron. We also demonstrate that both Fur and Sae are required for full induction of the oxidative stress response and expression of non-covalently bound surface proteins in low-iron growth conditions. In addition, Sae is required for the induced expression of the important virulence factors isdA and isdB in low iron. Our studies also indicate that Fur is required for the induced expression of the global regulators Agr and Rot in low iron and a number of extracellular virulence factors such as the haemolysins which are also Sae- and Agr-regulated. Hence, we show that Fur is central to a complex regulatory network that is required for the induced expression of a number of important S. aureus virulence determinants in low iron. PMID:20705504

  4. Vru (Sub0144) controls expression of proven and putative virulence determinants and alters the ability of Streptococcus uberis to cause disease in dairy cattle.

    PubMed

    Egan, Sharon A; Ward, Philip N; Watson, Michael; Field, Terence R; Leigh, James A

    2012-06-01

    The regulation and control of gene expression in response to differing environmental stimuli is crucial for successful pathogen adaptation and persistence. The regulatory gene vru of Streptococcus uberis encodes a stand-alone response regulator with similarity to the Mga of group A Streptococcus. Mga controls expression of a number of important virulence determinants. Experimental intramammary challenge of dairy cattle with a mutant of S. uberis carrying an inactivating lesion in vru showed reduced ability to colonize the mammary gland and an inability to induce clinical signs of mastitis compared with the wild-type strain. Analysis of transcriptional differences of gene expression in the mutant, determined by microarray analysis, identified a number of coding sequences with altered expression in the absence of Vru. These consisted of known and putative virulence determinants, including Lbp (Sub0145), SclB (Sub1095), PauA (Sub1785) and hasA (Sub1696). PMID:22383474

  5. Tandem attenuators control expression of the Salmonella mgtCBR virulence operon.

    PubMed

    Lee, Eun-Jin; Groisman, Eduardo A

    2012-10-01

    The mgtCBR operon from Salmonella enterica serovar Typhimurium specifies the virulence protein MgtC, the Mg(2+) transporter MgtB and the regulatory peptide MgtR. The mgtCBR transcript includes a long leader region harbouring two short open reading frames (ORFs). Translation of these ORFs is anticipated to impact the formation of particular stem-loop structures and control transcription of the coding region by an attenuation-like mechanism. We previously reported that ORF mgtM enables Salmonella to promote transcription of the mgtC and mgtB coding regions when experiencing a rise in cytoplasmic ATP levels. We now show that the proline codon-rich ORF mgtP mediates an increase in transcription of the mgtC and mgtB coding regions under conditions predicted to decrease the levels of proline-charged tRNA(Pro) . The high ATP and low proline signals act independently in an additive form. Replacing conserved mgtP proline codons with codons specifying other amino acids abolished the response to proline limitation but had no effect on the response to ATP. Substitution of conserved adenine nucleotides in mgtM abolished the response to ATP but had no effect in the response to proline limitation. This provides a singular example of a leader mRNA with tandem attenuators responding to different signals. PMID:22857388

  6. Infection of human airway epithelial cells by different subtypes of Dobrava-Belgrade virus reveals gene expression patterns corresponding to their virulence potential.

    PubMed

    Witkowski, Peter T; Bourquain, Daniel; Bankov, Katrin; Auste, Brita; Dabrowski, Piotr W; Nitsche, Andreas; Krüger, Detlev H; Schaade, Lars

    2016-06-01

    Dobrava-Belgrade virus (DOBV) is a pathogen causing hemorrhagic fever with renal syndrome in Europe. Virulence and case fatality rate are associated with virus genotype; however the reasons for these differences are not well understood. In this work we present virus-specific effects on the gene expression profiles of human lung epithelial cells (A549) infected with different genotypes of DOBV (Dobrava, Kurkino, and Sochi), as well as the low-virulent Tula virus (TULV). The data was collected by whole-genome gene expression microarrays and confirmed by quantitative real-time PCR. Despite their close genetic relationship, the expression profiles induced by infection with different hantaviruses are significantly varying. Major differences were observed in regulation of immune response genes, which were especially induced by highly virulent DOBV genotypes Dobrava and Sochi in contrast to less virulent DOBV-Kurkino and TULV. This work gives first insights into the differences of virus - host interactions of DOBV on genotype level. PMID:27058765

  7. Mycobacterium bovis-infected macrophages from resistant and susceptible cattle exhibited a differential pro-inflammatory gene expression profile depending on strain virulence.

    PubMed

    Alfonseca-Silva, Edgar; Hernández-Pando, Rogelio; Gutiérrez-Pabello, José A

    2016-08-01

    Mycobacterium bovis, the causative agent of bovine tuberculosis, is an intracellular bacterium that normally persists inside host macrophages. However, the influence of bacterial virulence and host resistance on the final outcome in this interaction is not well known. In this study, we infected macrophages isolated from natural disease resistant (R) and susceptible (S) cattle donors with M. bovis strains characterized as attenuated and virulent to assess pro-inflammatory cytokine (TNFα, IL-12, IL-18, IL-1β, IL-6), chemokine (MCP-1, MCP-2, MIP-1), macrophage receptor (MSR1, TLR2, TLR4, MMR) and iNOS mRNA expression levels. Our findings identified a pro-inflammatory gene expression profile as a common feature after M. bovis infection regardless of bacterial virulence, however in S macrophages a superior expression was induced by the attenuated strain, whereas in R macrophages it was accomplished by the virulent M. bovis. A macrophage pro-inflammatory profile is intended to control M. bovis intracellular growth; however the host resistant phenotype plays a determinant role in it, since R macrophages had better intracellular bacterial control than S cells. PMID:26970816

  8. Mycobacterium abscessus phospholipase C expression is induced during coculture within amoebae and enhances M. abscessus virulence in mice.

    PubMed

    Bakala N'Goma, Jean Claude; Le Moigne, Vincent; Soismier, Nathalie; Laencina, Laura; Le Chevalier, Fabien; Roux, Anne-Laure; Poncin, Isabelle; Serveau-Avesque, Carole; Rottman, Martin; Gaillard, Jean-Louis; Etienne, Gilles; Brosch, Roland; Herrmann, Jean-Louis; Canaan, Stéphane; Girard-Misguich, Fabienne

    2015-02-01

    Mycobacterium abscessus is a pathogenic, rapidly growing mycobacterium involved in pulmonary and cutaneo-mucous infections worldwide, to which cystic fibrosis patients are exquisitely susceptible. The analysis of the genome sequence of M. abscessus showed that this bacterium is endowed with the metabolic pathways typically found in environmental microorganisms that come into contact with soil, plants, and aquatic environments, where free-living amoebae are frequently present. M. abscessus also contains several genes that are characteristically found only in pathogenic bacteria. One of them is MAB_0555, encoding a putative phospholipase C (PLC) that is absent from most other rapidly growing mycobacteria, including Mycobacterium chelonae and Mycobacterium smegmatis. Here, we report that purified recombinant M. abscessus PLC is highly cytotoxic to mouse macrophages, presumably due to hydrolysis of membrane phospholipids. We further showed by constructing and using an M. abscessus PLC knockout mutant that loss of PLC activity is deleterious to M. abscessus intracellular survival in amoebae. The importance of PLC is further supported by the fact that M. abscessus PLC was found to be expressed only in amoebae. Aerosol challenge of mice with M. abscessus strains that were precultured in amoebae enhanced M. abscessus lung infectivity relative to M. abscessus grown in broth culture. Our study underlines the importance of PLC for the virulence of M. abscessus. Despite the difficulties of isolating M. abscessus from environmental sources, our findings suggest that M. abscessus has evolved in close contact with environmental protozoa, which supports the argument that amoebae may contribute to the virulence of opportunistic mycobacteria. PMID:25486995

  9. Mycobacterium abscessus Phospholipase C Expression Is Induced during Coculture within Amoebae and Enhances M. abscessus Virulence in Mice

    PubMed Central

    Bakala N'Goma, Jean Claude; Le Moigne, Vincent; Soismier, Nathalie; Laencina, Laura; Le Chevalier, Fabien; Roux, Anne-Laure; Poncin, Isabelle; Serveau-Avesque, Carole; Rottman, Martin; Gaillard, Jean-Louis; Etienne, Gilles; Brosch, Roland; Canaan, Stéphane

    2014-01-01

    Mycobacterium abscessus is a pathogenic, rapidly growing mycobacterium involved in pulmonary and cutaneo-mucous infections worldwide, to which cystic fibrosis patients are exquisitely susceptible. The analysis of the genome sequence of M. abscessus showed that this bacterium is endowed with the metabolic pathways typically found in environmental microorganisms that come into contact with soil, plants, and aquatic environments, where free-living amoebae are frequently present. M. abscessus also contains several genes that are characteristically found only in pathogenic bacteria. One of them is MAB_0555, encoding a putative phospholipase C (PLC) that is absent from most other rapidly growing mycobacteria, including Mycobacterium chelonae and Mycobacterium smegmatis. Here, we report that purified recombinant M. abscessus PLC is highly cytotoxic to mouse macrophages, presumably due to hydrolysis of membrane phospholipids. We further showed by constructing and using an M. abscessus PLC knockout mutant that loss of PLC activity is deleterious to M. abscessus intracellular survival in amoebae. The importance of PLC is further supported by the fact that M. abscessus PLC was found to be expressed only in amoebae. Aerosol challenge of mice with M. abscessus strains that were precultured in amoebae enhanced M. abscessus lung infectivity relative to M. abscessus grown in broth culture. Our study underlines the importance of PLC for the virulence of M. abscessus. Despite the difficulties of isolating M. abscessus from environmental sources, our findings suggest that M. abscessus has evolved in close contact with environmental protozoa, which supports the argument that amoebae may contribute to the virulence of opportunistic mycobacteria. PMID:25486995

  10. Mutations in the Escherichia coli Ribosomal Protein L22 Selectively Suppress the Expression of a Secreted Bacterial Virulence Factor

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Mutations in the ribosomal protein L22 that impair peptide-mediated translation arrest in Escherichia coli have been shown to reduce the expression of several genes, including secA, which encodes an ATPase that drives protein export via the Sec pathway. Here, we used a comparative proteomic approach to obtain insight into the global effects of the L22(Δ82-84) mutation on gene expression and protein synthesis. While the mutation did not affect or modestly affected the level of most soluble proteins, it dramatically reduced the level of antigen 43 (Ag43), a secreted virulence factor that promotes autoaggregation. The reduced protein concentration correlated with a sharp decrease in the abundance and stability of Ag43 mRNA. We found that the overexpression of secA or the inactivation of genes that encode presecretory and membrane proteins restored Ag43 production in the L22 mutant strain. Furthermore, impairment of the Sec pathway in a wild-type strain reduced Ag43 production but did not significantly affect the synthesis of other presecretory proteins. Taken together, these results indicate that Ag43 gene expression is exquisitely sensitive to the status of the Sec machinery and strongly suggest that the L22 mutation decreases the Ag43 concentration indirectly by reducing secA expression. Our results imply the existence of a novel regulatory mechanism in which the efficiency of protein export is coupled to gene expression and help to explain the modulation of SecA synthesis that has been observed in response to secretion stress. PMID:23625843

  11. AlgU controls expression of virulence genes in Pseudomonas syringae pv. tomato DC3000

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Plant pathogenic bacteria are able to integrate information about their environment and adjust gene expression to provide adaptive functions. AlgU, an ECF sigma factor encoded by Pseudomonas syringae, controls expression of genes for alginate biosynthesis and is active while the bacteria are associa...

  12. Molecular Cooperativity Governs Diverse and Monoallelic Olfactory Receptor Expression

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xing, Jianhua; Tian, Xiaojun; Zhang, Hang; Sannerud, Jens

    Multiple-objective optimization is common in biological systems. In the mammalian olfactory system, each sensory neuron stochastically expresses only one out of up to thousands of olfactory receptor (OR) gene alleles; at organism level the types of expressed ORs need to be maximized. The molecular mechanism of this Nobel-Prize winning puzzle remains unresolved after decades of extensive studies. Existing models focus only on monoallele activation, and cannot explain recent observations in mutants, especially the reduced global diversity of expressed ORs in G9a/GLP knockouts. In this work we integrated existing information on OR expression, and proposed an evolutionarily optimized three-layer regulation mechanism, which includes zonal segregation, epigenetic and enhancer competition coupled to a negative feedback loop. This model not only recapitulates monoallelic OR expression, but also elucidates how the olfactory system maximizes and maintains the diversity of OR expression. The model is validated by several experimental results, and particularly underscores cooperativity and synergy as a general design principle of multi-objective optimization in biology. The work is supported by the NIGMS/DMS Mathematical Biology program.

  13. Expression of Virulence-Related Genes in Listeria monocytogenes Grown on Danish Hard Cheese as Affected by NaCl Content.

    PubMed

    Larsen, Nadja; Jespersen, Lene

    2015-06-01

    Expression of virulence-related genes in Listeria monocytogenes incubated on cheese was assessed by real-time quantitative polymerase chain reaction. The objective of the study was to investigate the impact of sodium chloride concentration in cheese on transcription of virulence genes and, thereby, virulence potential of L. monocytogenes. The expression studies were performed with L. monocytogenes strains characterized by different tolerance to salt stress. Strains ATCC(®) 51779 and DSMZ 15675 were incubated on the Danish hard-cheese type Samsoe, with low (<0.15% [wt/wt]) and high (3.6% [wt/wt]) content of NaCl. Genes differentially expressed (p<0.05) through the 48-h incubation were transcriptional regulators prfA and agrA, genes of the main virulence cluster inlA, hly, actA, involved in invasion of the epithelial cells, and genes bsh, opuC, gadC, clpP, and ami, associated with osmotic stress responses in L. monocytogenes. The more sensitive strain ATCC(®) 51779 was most responsive, showing significant upregulation of prfA, actA, hly, and bsh both at low and high NaCl. Strain DSMZ 15675 was less responsive to NaCl stress, showing reduced or consistent gene transcription at all conditions. Decreased transcription of agrA, ami, gadC, and opuC in both strains was promoted by low NaCl content. The study indicated that virulence gene expression of L. monocytogenes grown in cheese was affected by NaCl content and that effect was more significant in strains sensitive to both hypo- and hyperosmotic stresses. PMID:26067229

  14. Dual-site phosphorylation of the control of virulence regulator impacts group a streptococcal global gene expression and pathogenesis.

    PubMed

    Horstmann, Nicola; Saldaña, Miguel; Sahasrabhojane, Pranoti; Yao, Hui; Su, Xiaoping; Thompson, Erika; Koller, Antonius; Shelburne, Samuel A

    2014-05-01

    Phosphorylation relays are a major mechanism by which bacteria alter transcription in response to environmental signals, but understanding of the functional consequences of bacterial response regulator phosphorylation is limited. We sought to characterize how phosphorylation of the control of virulence regulator (CovR) protein from the major human pathogen group A Streptococcus (GAS) influences GAS global gene expression and pathogenesis. CovR mainly serves to repress GAS virulence factor-encoding genes and has been shown to homodimerize following phosphorylation on aspartate-53 (D53) in vitro. We discovered that CovR is phosphorylated in vivo and that such phosphorylation is partially heat-stable, suggesting additional phosphorylation at non-aspartate residues. Using mass spectroscopy along with targeted mutagenesis, we identified threonine-65 (T65) as an additional CovR phosphorylation site under control of the serine/threonine kinase (Stk). Phosphorylation on T65, as mimicked by the recombinant CovR T65E variant, abolished in vitro CovR D53 phosphorylation. Similarly, isoallelic GAS strains that were either unable to be phosphorylated at D53 (CovR-D53A) or had functional constitutive phosphorylation at T65 (CovR-T65E) had essentially an identical gene repression profile to each other and to a CovR-inactivated strain. However, the CovR-D53A and CovR-T65E isoallelic strains retained the ability to positively influence gene expression that was abolished in the CovR-inactivated strain. Consistent with these observations, the CovR-D53A and CovR-T65E strains were hypervirulent compared to the CovR-inactivated strain in a mouse model of invasive GAS disease. Surprisingly, an isoalleic strain unable to be phosphorylated at CovR T65 (CovR-T65A) was hypervirulent compared to the wild-type strain, as auto-regulation of covR gene expression resulted in lower covR gene transcript and CovR protein levels in the CovR-T65A strain. Taken together, these data establish that Cov

  15. Dual-Site Phosphorylation of the Control of Virulence Regulator Impacts Group A Streptococcal Global Gene Expression and Pathogenesis

    PubMed Central

    Horstmann, Nicola; Saldaña, Miguel; Sahasrabhojane, Pranoti; Yao, Hui; Su, Xiaoping; Thompson, Erika; Koller, Antonius; Shelburne, Samuel A.

    2014-01-01

    Phosphorylation relays are a major mechanism by which bacteria alter transcription in response to environmental signals, but understanding of the functional consequences of bacterial response regulator phosphorylation is limited. We sought to characterize how phosphorylation of the control of virulence regulator (CovR) protein from the major human pathogen group A Streptococcus (GAS) influences GAS global gene expression and pathogenesis. CovR mainly serves to repress GAS virulence factor-encoding genes and has been shown to homodimerize following phosphorylation on aspartate-53 (D53) in vitro. We discovered that CovR is phosphorylated in vivo and that such phosphorylation is partially heat-stable, suggesting additional phosphorylation at non-aspartate residues. Using mass spectroscopy along with targeted mutagenesis, we identified threonine-65 (T65) as an additional CovR phosphorylation site under control of the serine/threonine kinase (Stk). Phosphorylation on T65, as mimicked by the recombinant CovR T65E variant, abolished in vitro CovR D53 phosphorylation. Similarly, isoallelic GAS strains that were either unable to be phosphorylated at D53 (CovR-D53A) or had functional constitutive phosphorylation at T65 (CovR-T65E) had essentially an identical gene repression profile to each other and to a CovR-inactivated strain. However, the CovR-D53A and CovR-T65E isoallelic strains retained the ability to positively influence gene expression that was abolished in the CovR-inactivated strain. Consistent with these observations, the CovR-D53A and CovR-T65E strains were hypervirulent compared to the CovR-inactivated strain in a mouse model of invasive GAS disease. Surprisingly, an isoalleic strain unable to be phosphorylated at CovR T65 (CovR-T65A) was hypervirulent compared to the wild-type strain, as auto-regulation of covR gene expression resulted in lower covR gene transcript and CovR protein levels in the CovR-T65A strain. Taken together, these data establish that Cov

  16. An In Vivo Selection Identifies Listeria monocytogenes Genes Required to Sense the Intracellular Environment and Activate Virulence Factor Expression

    PubMed Central

    Portnoy, Daniel A.

    2016-01-01

    Listeria monocytogenes is an environmental saprophyte and facultative intracellular bacterial pathogen with a well-defined life-cycle that involves escape from a phagosome, rapid cytosolic growth, and ActA-dependent cell-to-cell spread, all of which are dependent on the master transcriptional regulator PrfA. The environmental cues that lead to temporal and spatial control of L. monocytogenes virulence gene expression are poorly understood. In this study, we took advantage of the robust up-regulation of ActA that occurs intracellularly and expressed Cre recombinase from the actA promoter and 5’ untranslated region in a strain in which loxP sites flanked essential genes, so that activation of actA led to bacterial death. Upon screening for transposon mutants that survived intracellularly, six genes were identified as necessary for ActA expression. Strikingly, most of the genes, including gshF, spxA1, yjbH, and ohrA, are predicted to play important roles in bacterial redox regulation. The mutants identified in the genetic selection fell into three broad categories: (1) those that failed to reach the cytosolic compartment; (2) mutants that entered the cytosol, but failed to activate the master virulence regulator PrfA; and (3) mutants that entered the cytosol and activated transcription of actA, but failed to synthesize it. The identification of mutants defective in vacuolar escape suggests that up-regulation of ActA occurs in the host cytosol and not the vacuole. Moreover, these results provide evidence for two non-redundant cytosolic cues; the first results in allosteric activation of PrfA via increased glutathione levels and transcriptional activation of actA while the second results in translational activation of actA and requires yjbH. Although the precise host cues have not yet been identified, we suggest that intracellular redox stress occurs as a consequence of both host and pathogen remodeling their metabolism upon infection. PMID:27414028

  17. An In Vivo Selection Identifies Listeria monocytogenes Genes Required to Sense the Intracellular Environment and Activate Virulence Factor Expression.

    PubMed

    Reniere, Michelle L; Whiteley, Aaron T; Portnoy, Daniel A

    2016-07-01

    Listeria monocytogenes is an environmental saprophyte and facultative intracellular bacterial pathogen with a well-defined life-cycle that involves escape from a phagosome, rapid cytosolic growth, and ActA-dependent cell-to-cell spread, all of which are dependent on the master transcriptional regulator PrfA. The environmental cues that lead to temporal and spatial control of L. monocytogenes virulence gene expression are poorly understood. In this study, we took advantage of the robust up-regulation of ActA that occurs intracellularly and expressed Cre recombinase from the actA promoter and 5' untranslated region in a strain in which loxP sites flanked essential genes, so that activation of actA led to bacterial death. Upon screening for transposon mutants that survived intracellularly, six genes were identified as necessary for ActA expression. Strikingly, most of the genes, including gshF, spxA1, yjbH, and ohrA, are predicted to play important roles in bacterial redox regulation. The mutants identified in the genetic selection fell into three broad categories: (1) those that failed to reach the cytosolic compartment; (2) mutants that entered the cytosol, but failed to activate the master virulence regulator PrfA; and (3) mutants that entered the cytosol and activated transcription of actA, but failed to synthesize it. The identification of mutants defective in vacuolar escape suggests that up-regulation of ActA occurs in the host cytosol and not the vacuole. Moreover, these results provide evidence for two non-redundant cytosolic cues; the first results in allosteric activation of PrfA via increased glutathione levels and transcriptional activation of actA while the second results in translational activation of actA and requires yjbH. Although the precise host cues have not yet been identified, we suggest that intracellular redox stress occurs as a consequence of both host and pathogen remodeling their metabolism upon infection. PMID:27414028

  18. Virulence-associated protein-specific serum immunoglobulin G-isotype expression in young foals protected against Rhodococcus equi pneumonia by oral immunization with virulent R. equi.

    PubMed

    Hooper-McGrevy, K E; Wilkie, B N; Prescott, J F

    2005-12-30

    The purpose of this study was to determine whether foals immunized orally from 2 days of age with virulent Rhodococcus equi developed a protective pulmonary immune response and to characterise the antibody response of the immunized foals to the virulence-associated proteins (Vaps) of the bacterium. Two groups of foals were used. One (n=4) was given live R. equi ATCC 33701 orally at 2, 7, and 14 days of age. The second group comprised three non-immunized foals age-matched to the vaccinates. At 3 weeks of age, 1 week after the final immunization, both groups were challenged intrabronchially with virulent R. equi ATCC 33701 and observed for 2 weeks post-challenge. Unvaccinated foals became clinically pneumonic and had high fever with increased heart and respiratory rates and severe pneumonia evident at necropsy. Foals of the immunized group remained healthy and lung lesions were not found post-mortem. Thus, it is possible to immunize young foals orally to protect them by 3 weeks of age against lung challenge with R. equi, even in the presence of maternal antibodies. The antibody response of the immunized foals confirmed that VapA and VapC are highly immunogenic. The immunoglobulin G isotype-related serum antibody response of immunized compared to non-immunized foals had an IgGT bias and a relatively low IgGa:IgGb ratio, both features different from what has been previously observed in immune adults and immune foals. This suggests that the serum IgG isotype profile of antibody cannot be used as a measure of evidence of protection against R. equi pneumonia. PMID:16112256

  19. Transcriptome-Based Identification of Differently Expressed Genes from Xanthomonas oryzae pv. oryzae Strains Exhibiting Different Virulence in Rice Varieties.

    PubMed

    Noh, Tae-Hwan; Song, Eun-Sung; Kim, Hong-Il; Kang, Mi-Hyung; Park, Young-Jin

    2016-01-01

    Xanthomonas oryzae pv. oryzae (Xoo) causes bacterial blight (BB) in rice (Oryza sativa L.). In this study, we investigated the genome-wide transcription patterns of two Xoo strains (KACC10331 and HB1009), which showed different virulence patterns against eight rice cultivars, including IRBB21 (carrying Xa21). In total, 743 genes showed a significant change (p-value < 0.001 in t-tests) in their mRNA expression levels in the HB1009 (K3a race) strain compared with the Xoo KACC10331 strain (K1 race). Among them, four remarkably enriched GO terms, DNA binding, transposition, cellular nitrogen compound metabolic process, and cellular macromolecule metabolic process, were identified in the upregulated genes. In addition, the expression of 44 genes was considerably higher (log2 fold changes > 2) in the HB1009 (K3a race) strain than in the Xoo KACC10331 (K1 race) strain. Furthermore, 13 and 12 genes involved in hypersensitive response and pathogenicity (hrp) and two-component regulatory systems (TCSs), respectively, were upregulated in the HB1009 (K3a race) strain compared with the Xoo KACC10331 (K1 race) strain, which we determined using either quantitative real-time PCR analysis or next-generation RNA sequencing. These results will be helpful to improve our understanding of Xoo and to gain a better insight into the Xoo-rice interactions. PMID:26907259

  20. Transcriptome-Based Identification of Differently Expressed Genes from Xanthomonas oryzae pv. oryzae Strains Exhibiting Different Virulence in Rice Varieties

    PubMed Central

    Noh, Tae-Hwan; Song, Eun-Sung; Kim, Hong-Il; Kang, Mi-Hyung; Park, Young-Jin

    2016-01-01

    Xanthomonas oryzae pv. oryzae (Xoo) causes bacterial blight (BB) in rice (Oryza sativa L.). In this study, we investigated the genome-wide transcription patterns of two Xoo strains (KACC10331 and HB1009), which showed different virulence patterns against eight rice cultivars, including IRBB21 (carrying Xa21). In total, 743 genes showed a significant change (p-value < 0.001 in t-tests) in their mRNA expression levels in the HB1009 (K3a race) strain compared with the Xoo KACC10331 strain (K1 race). Among them, four remarkably enriched GO terms, DNA binding, transposition, cellular nitrogen compound metabolic process, and cellular macromolecule metabolic process, were identified in the upregulated genes. In addition, the expression of 44 genes was considerably higher (log2 fold changes > 2) in the HB1009 (K3a race) strain than in the Xoo KACC10331 (K1 race) strain. Furthermore, 13 and 12 genes involved in hypersensitive response and pathogenicity (hrp) and two-component regulatory systems (TCSs), respectively, were upregulated in the HB1009 (K3a race) strain compared with the Xoo KACC10331 (K1 race) strain, which we determined using either quantitative real-time PCR analysis or next-generation RNA sequencing. These results will be helpful to improve our understanding of Xoo and to gain a better insight into the Xoo–rice interactions. PMID:26907259

  1. Natural plant products inhibits growth and alters the swarming motility, biofilm formation, and expression of virulence genes in enteroaggregative and enterohemorrhagic Escherichia coli.

    PubMed

    García-Heredia, Alam; García, Santos; Merino-Mascorro, José Ángel; Feng, Peter; Heredia, Norma

    2016-10-01

    The purpose of this study was to determine the effects of plant products on the growth, swarming motility, biofilm formation and virulence gene expression in enterohemorrhagic Escherichia coli O157:H7 and enteroaggregative E. coli strain 042 and a strain of O104:H4 serotype. Extracts of Lippia graveolens and Haematoxylon brassiletto, and carvacrol, brazilin were tested by an antimicrobial microdilution method using citral and rifaximin as controls. All products showed bactericidal activity with minimal bactericidal concentrations ranging from 0.08 to 8.1 mg/ml. Swarming motility was determined in soft LB agar. Most compounds reduced swarming motility by 7%-100%; except carvacrol which promoted motility in two strains. Biofilm formation studies were done in microtiter plates. Rifaximin inhibited growth and reduced biofilm formation, but various concentrations of other compounds actually induced biofilm formation. Real time PCR showed that most compounds decreased stx2 expression. The expression of pic and rpoS in E. coli 042 were suppressed but in E. coli O104:H4 they varied depending on compounds. In conclusion, these extracts affect E. coli growth, swarming motility and virulence gene expression. Although these compounds were bactericidal for pathogenic E. coli, sublethal concentrations had varied effects on phenotypic and genotypic traits, and some increased virulence gene expression. PMID:27375253

  2. Characterization of pseudorabies virus mutants expressing carboxy-terminal truncations of gE: evidence for envelope incorporation, virulence, and neurotropism domains.

    PubMed Central

    Tirabassi, R S; Townley, R A; Eldridge, M G; Enquist, L W

    1997-01-01

    Glycoprotein E (gE) gene of pseudorabies virus (PRV) is conserved among diverse alphaherpesviruses and therefore is predicted to be important for virus survival. gE contributes to viral spread from cell to cell in a variety of hosts and is responsible, in part, for increased virulence or pathogenesis of the virus. Virulence and spread mediated by gE are thought to be highly correlated. We initiated this study to explore the hypothesis that these two phenotypes might reflect separate functions of the gE protein. We did so by focusing on the role of the gE carboxy terminus in neuronal spread. Viruses harboring nonsense mutations affecting the expression of the gE cytoplasmic domain had several notable phenotypes. First, the truncated gE proteins expressed from these mutants are not found in virion envelopes. Second, the mutants retain the ability to spread to all retinorecipient regions of the rodent brain after retinal infection of rats. Third, the mutants have the reduced virulence phenotype of a gE deletion mutant in rats. Finally, the mutants have distinct plaque-size phenotypes on MDBK cells but not PK15 cells. Based on these observations, we suggest that gE-mediated virulence and spread may reflect separate functions that are not mediated by gE on virus particles. PMID:9261363

  3. Global selection of Plasmodium falciparum virulence antigen expression by host antibodies

    PubMed Central

    Abdi, Abdirahman I.; Warimwe, George M.; Muthui, Michelle K.; Kivisi, Cheryl A.; Kiragu, Esther W.; Fegan, Gregory W.; Bull, Peter C.

    2016-01-01

    Parasite proteins called PfEMP1 that are inserted on the surface of infected erythrocytes, play a key role in the severe pathology associated with infection by the Plasmodium falciparum malaria parasite. These proteins mediate binding of infected cells to the endothelial lining of blood vessels as a strategy to avoid clearance by the spleen and are major targets of naturally acquired immunity. PfEMP1 is encoded by a large multi-gene family called var. Mutually-exclusive transcriptional switching between var genes allows parasites to escape host antibodies. This study examined in detail the patterns of expression of var in a well-characterized sample of parasites from Kenyan Children. Instead of observing clear inverse relationships between the expression of broad sub-classes of PfEMP1, we found that expression of different PfEMP1 groups vary relatively independently. Parasite adaptation to host antibodies also appears to involve a general reduction in detectable var gene expression. We suggest that parasites switch both between different PfEMP1 variants and between high and low expression states. Such a strategy could provide a means of avoiding immunological detection and promoting survival under high levels of host immunity. PMID:26804201

  4. Salmonella enterica Serovars Typhi and Paratyphi A are avirulent in newborn and infant mice even when expressing virulence plasmid genes of Salmonella Typhimurium

    PubMed Central

    Javier Santander, M.; Curtiss, Roy

    2014-01-01

    Background Salmonella enterica serovars Typhi and Paratyphi A are human host-restricted pathogens. Therefore, there is no small susceptible animal host that can be used to assess the virulence and safety of vaccine strains derived from these Salmonella serovars. However, infant mice have been used to evaluate virulence and colonization by another human host-restricted pathogen, Vibrio cholerae. Methodology The possibility that infant mice host could be adapted for Salmonella led us to investigate the susceptibility of newborn and infant mice to oral infection with S. Typhi and S. Paratyphi A. Salmonella enterica serovar Typhimurium causes enteric fever in adult mice and this system has been used as a model for human typhoid. The pSTV virulence plasmid, not present in S. Typhi and S. Paratyphi A, plays an essential role in S. Typhimurium colonization and systemic infection of mice. We also conjugated pSTV into S. Typhi and S. Paratyphi A serovars and evaluated these transconjugants in newborn and infant mice. Results We determined that the spv virulence genes from the S. Typhimurium virulence plasmid are expressed in S. Typhi and S. Paratyphi A in a RpoS dependent fashion. Also, we determined that S. Typhi and S. Paratyphi A with and without pSTV transiently colonize newborn and infant mice tissues. Conclusion Newborn and infant mice infected with S. Typhi and S. Paratyphi A do not succumb to the infection and that carriage of the S. Typhimurium virulence plasmid, pSTV, did not influence these results. PMID:21252450

  5. Chamaecyparis obtusa Essential Oil Inhibits Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus aureus Biofilm Formation and Expression of Virulence Factors.

    PubMed

    Kim, Eun-Sook; Kang, Sun-Young; Kim, Young-Hoi; Lee, Young-Eun; Choi, Na-Young; You, Yong-Ouk; Kim, Kang-Ju

    2015-07-01

    The emergence of antibiotic-resistant bacteria has caused difficulty in treating infectious diseases. Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) is one of the most commonly recognized antibiotic-resistant bacteria. Novel antibiotics are urgently required to treat these bacteria. Raw materials derived from natural sources can be used for the development of novel antibiotics, such as Chamaecyparis obtusa (C. obtusa), which has been traditionally used in treating asthmatic disease. In this study, the antibacterial activity of the essential oil (EO) extracted from C. obtusa leaves against MRSA was investigated. MRSA growth and acid production from glucose metabolism were inhibited at concentrations greater than 0.1 mg/mL C. obtusa EO. MRSA biofilm formation was observed using scanning electron microscopy and safranin staining. C. obtusa EO inhibited MRSA biofilm formation at concentrations greater than 0.1 mg/mL. Using real-time polymerase chain reaction, mRNA expression of virulence factor genes, sea, agrA, and sarA, was observed. agrA expression was inhibited with C. obtusa EO concentrations greater than 0.2 mg/mL, whereas inhibition of sea and sarA expression was also observed at a concentration of 0.3 mg/mL. C. obtusa EO was analyzed by gas chromatography (GC) and GC coupled for mass spectrometry, which identified 59 constituents, accounting to 98.99% of the total EO. These findings suggest that C. obtusa EO has antibacterial effects against MRSA, which might be associated with the major components of C. obtusa EO, such as sabinene (19.06%), α-terpinyl acetate (16.99%), bornyl acetate (10.48%), limonene (8.54%), elemol (7.47%), myrcene (5.86%), γ-terpinene (4.04%), and hibaene (3.01%). PMID:25923444

  6. Expression of homologous RND efflux pump genes is dependent upon AcrB expression: implications for efflux and virulence inhibitor design

    PubMed Central

    Blair, Jessica M. A.; Smith, Helen E.; Ricci, Vito; Lawler, Amelia J.; Thompson, Louisa J.; Piddock, Laura J. V.

    2015-01-01

    Objectives Enterobacteriaceae have multiple efflux pumps that confer intrinsic resistance to antibiotics. AcrB mediates clinically relevant multidrug resistance and is required for virulence and biofilm formation, making it an attractive target for the design of inhibitors. The aim of this study was to assess the viability of single transporters as a target for efflux inhibition using Salmonella Typhimurium as the model pathogen. Methods The expression of resistance–nodulation–division (RND) efflux pump genes in response to the inactivation of single or multiple homologues was measured using real-time RT–PCR. Phenotypes of mutants were characterized by measuring antimicrobial susceptibility, dye accumulation and the ability to cause infection in vitro. Results The expression of all RND efflux pump genes was increased when single or multiple acr genes were inactivated, suggesting a feedback mechanism that activates the transcription of homologous efflux pump genes. When two or three acr genes were inactivated, the mutants had further reduced efflux, altered susceptibility to antimicrobials (including increased susceptibility to some, but conversely and counterintuitively, decreased susceptibility to some others) and were more attenuated in the tissue culture model than mutants lacking single pumps were. Conclusions These data indicate that it is critical to understand which pumps an inhibitor is active against and the effect of this on the expression of homologous systems. For some antimicrobials, an inhibitor with activity against multiple pumps will have a greater impact on susceptibility, but an unintended consequence of this may be decreased susceptibility to other drugs, such as aminoglycosides. PMID:25288678

  7. Genes necessary for expression of a virulence determinant and for transmission of Plasmodium falciparum are located on a 0.3-megabase region of chromosome 9.

    PubMed Central

    Day, K P; Karamalis, F; Thompson, J; Barnes, D A; Peterson, C; Brown, H; Brown, G V; Kemp, D J

    1993-01-01

    Virulence of the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum is believed to relate to adhesion of parasitized erythrocytes to postcapillary venular endothelium (asexual cytoadherence). Transmission of malaria to the mosquito vector involves a switch from asexual to sexual development (gametocytogenesis). Continuous in vitro culture of P. falciparum frequently results in irreversible loss of asexual cytoadherence and gametocytogenesis. Field isolates and cloned lines differing in expression of these phenotypes were karyotyped by pulse-field gel electrophoresis. This analysis showed that expression of both phenotypes mapped to a 0.3-Mb subtelomeric deletion of chromosome 9. This deletion frequently occurs during adaptation of parasite isolates to in vitro culture. Parasites with this deletion did not express the variant surface agglutination phenotype and the putative asexual cytoadherence ligand designated P. falciparum erythrocyte membrane protein 1, which has recently been shown to undergo antigenic variation. The syntenic relationship between asexual cytoadherence and gametocytogenesis suggests that expression of these phenotypes is genetically linked. One explanation for this linkage is that both developmental pathways share a common cytoadherence mechanism. This proposed biological and genetic linkage between a virulence factor (asexual cytoadherence) and transmissibility (gametocytogenesis) would help explain why a high degree of virulence has evolved and been maintained in falciparum malaria. Images Fig. 1 Fig. 2 Fig. 3 PMID:8367496

  8. Virulent Diuraphis noxia Aphids Over-Express Calcium Signaling Proteins to Overcome Defenses of Aphid-Resistant Wheat Plants

    PubMed Central

    Sinha, Deepak K.; Chandran, Predeesh; Timm, Alicia E.; Aguirre-Rojas, Lina; Smith, C. Michael

    2016-01-01

    The Russian wheat aphid, Diuraphis noxia, an invasive phytotoxic pest of wheat, Triticum aestivum, and barley, Hordeum vulgare, causes huge economic losses in Africa, South America, and North America. Most acceptable and ecologically beneficial aphid management strategies include selection and breeding of D. noxia-resistant varieties, and numerous D. noxia resistance genes have been identified in T. aestivum and H. vulgare. North American D. noxia biotype 1 is avirulent to T. aestivum varieties possessing Dn4 or Dn7 genes, while biotype 2 is virulent to Dn4 and avirulent to Dn7. The current investigation utilized next-generation RNAseq technology to reveal that biotype 2 over expresses proteins involved in calcium signaling, which activates phosphoinositide (PI) metabolism. Calcium signaling proteins comprised 36% of all transcripts identified in the two D. noxia biotypes. Depending on plant resistance gene-aphid biotype interaction, additional transcript groups included those involved in tissue growth; defense and stress response; zinc ion and related cofactor binding; and apoptosis. Activation of enzymes involved in PI metabolism by D. noxia biotype 2 aphids allows depletion of plant calcium that normally blocks aphid feeding sites in phloem sieve elements and enables successful, continuous feeding on plants resistant to avirulent biotype 1. Inhibition of the key enzyme phospholipase C significantly reduced biotype 2 salivation into phloem and phloem sap ingestion. PMID:26815857

  9. Virulent Diuraphis noxia Aphids Over-Express Calcium Signaling Proteins to Overcome Defenses of Aphid-Resistant Wheat Plants.

    PubMed

    Sinha, Deepak K; Chandran, Predeesh; Timm, Alicia E; Aguirre-Rojas, Lina; Smith, C Michael

    2016-01-01

    The Russian wheat aphid, Diuraphis noxia, an invasive phytotoxic pest of wheat, Triticum aestivum, and barley, Hordeum vulgare, causes huge economic losses in Africa, South America, and North America. Most acceptable and ecologically beneficial aphid management strategies include selection and breeding of D. noxia-resistant varieties, and numerous D. noxia resistance genes have been identified in T. aestivum and H. vulgare. North American D. noxia biotype 1 is avirulent to T. aestivum varieties possessing Dn4 or Dn7 genes, while biotype 2 is virulent to Dn4 and avirulent to Dn7. The current investigation utilized next-generation RNAseq technology to reveal that biotype 2 over expresses proteins involved in calcium signaling, which activates phosphoinositide (PI) metabolism. Calcium signaling proteins comprised 36% of all transcripts identified in the two D. noxia biotypes. Depending on plant resistance gene-aphid biotype interaction, additional transcript groups included those involved in tissue growth; defense and stress response; zinc ion and related cofactor binding; and apoptosis. Activation of enzymes involved in PI metabolism by D. noxia biotype 2 aphids allows depletion of plant calcium that normally blocks aphid feeding sites in phloem sieve elements and enables successful, continuous feeding on plants resistant to avirulent biotype 1. Inhibition of the key enzyme phospholipase C significantly reduced biotype 2 salivation into phloem and phloem sap ingestion. PMID:26815857

  10. [The study of influence of stresses on virulence genes expression in foodborne pathogens Campylobacter jejuni].

    PubMed

    Efimochkina, N R; Bykova, I B; Markova, Yu M; Korotkevich, Yu V; Sheveleva, S A

    2016-01-01

    The study of the responses to cold exposure in Campylobacterjejuni (C. jejuni)--one of the most common foodborne pathogens is important for elucidating the mechanisms of acquisition of products contaminated with campylobacter, hazardous properties. These data are also necessary to create effective systems of microbiological controls at all stages of production and storage of food. 5 pairs of oligonucleotide primers were selected for detecting of genes cadF, cdtB, ciaB, flaA, iamA, encoding the main factors of pathogenicity of foodborne pathogens Campylobacter jejuni--adhesion and invasion of epithelial cells, production of CDT-toxin and mobility. To quantify the expression levels of target genes of C. jejuni a comparative method of determining the amount of amplification products of genes encoding pathogenicity factors of Campylobacter spp. has been developed using real-time PCR with intercalating dyes. To calculate and quantify gene expression the mathematical models have been obtained that allow extrapolation of threshold cycles of amplification to the initial number of copies of RNA/DNA in the tested samples. It has been established that exposure of C. jejuni at low temperatures +4 degrees C did not lead to increased levels of expression of genes cdtB and ciaB. However, in the populations of C. jejuni subjected to freezing, followed by incubation at optimum for the pathogen temperature of +42 degrees C, the increase in expression of mRNA encoding protein subunit B of CDT-toxin and antigenic marker of invasion took place. The number of copies of RNA in C. jejuni after stress exposure increased by 1.14-2.6 lg in comparison with intact cultures. CdtB and ciaB gene expression in C. jejuni can serve as an indicator of cell response to stress and helps to restore the functions of the bacterial cells after the termination of cold exposure and return of the pathogen in conditions favourable to the realization of its pathogenic potential. PMID:27228703

  11. Association between expression of immunoglobulin G-binding proteins by group A streptococci and virulence in a mouse skin infection model.

    PubMed Central

    Raeder, R; Boyle, M D

    1993-01-01

    In this study, we developed a mouse model of skin infection to test the association between expression of immunoglobulin-binding proteins by and infectivity of group A streptococci. Group A streptococci capable of crossing tissue barriers and establishing a lethal systemic infection in mice showed a higher level of immunoglobulin-binding protein expression. The group A streptococci recovered from the spleen of a mouse that died following a skin infection were found to be more virulent when injected into the skin of naive mice. Together, these results suggest that immunoglobulin-binding protein expression by group A streptococci correlates with their ability to establish invasive skin infections. Images PMID:8454339

  12. Effect of rpoS Mutation on the Stress Response and Expression of Virulence Factors in Pseudomonas aeruginosa

    PubMed Central

    Suh, Sang-Jin; Silo-Suh, Laura; Woods, Donald E.; Hassett, Daniel J.; West, Susan E. H.; Ohman, Dennis E.

    1999-01-01

    The sigma factor RpoS (ςS) has been described as a general stress response regulator that controls the expression of genes which confer increased resistance to various stresses in some gram-negative bacteria. To elucidate the role of RpoS in Pseudomonas aeruginosa physiology and pathogenesis, we constructed rpoS mutants in several strains of P. aeruginosa, including PAO1. The PAO1 rpoS mutant was subjected to various environmental stresses, and we compared the resistance phenotype of the mutant to that of the parent. The PAO1 rpoS mutant was slightly more sensitive to carbon starvation than the wild-type strain, but this phenotype was obvious only when the cells were grown in a medium supplemented with glucose as the sole carbon source. In addition, the PAO1 rpoS mutant was hypersensitive to heat shock at 50°C, increased osmolarity, and prolonged exposure to high concentrations of H2O2. In accordance with the hypersensitivity to H2O2, catalase production was 60% lower in the rpoS mutant than in the parent strain. We also assessed the role of RpoS in the production of several exoproducts known to be important for virulence of P. aeruginosa. The rpoS mutant produced 50% less exotoxin A, but it produced only slightly smaller amounts of elastase and LasA protease than the parent strain. The levels of phospholipase C and casein-degrading proteases were unaffected by a mutation in rpoS in PAO1. The rpoS mutation resulted in the increased production of the phenazine antibiotic pyocyanin and the siderophore pyoverdine. This increased pyocyanin production may be responsible for the enhanced virulence of the PAO1 rpoS mutant that was observed in a rat chronic-lung-infection model. In addition, the rpoS mutant displayed an altered twitching-motility phenotype, suggesting that the colonization factors, type IV fimbriae, were affected. Finally, in an alginate-overproducing cystic fibrosis (CF) isolate, FRD1, the rpoS101::aacCI mutation almost completely abolished the

  13. Governance.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Moran, K. D.

    The author notes that two trends appear to be developing in litigation over the governance of the public schools. One trend is increasing participation of organized groups in suits against the schools. The other is a greater volume of litigation dealing with open meeting laws and freedom of information acts. Reflecting the second trend, the…

  14. Heterologous expression of viral suppressors of RNA silencing complements virulence of the HC-Pro mutant of clover yellow vein virus in pea.

    PubMed

    Atsumi, Go; Nakahara, Kenji S; Wada, Tomoko Sugikawa; Choi, Sun Hee; Masuta, Chikara; Uyeda, Ichiro

    2012-06-01

    Many plant viruses encode suppressors of RNA silencing, including the helper component-proteinase (HC-Pro) of potyviruses. Our previous studies showed that a D-to-Y mutation at amino acid position 193 in HC-Pro (HC-Pro-D193Y) drastically attenuated the virulence of clover yellow vein virus (ClYVV) in legume plants. Furthermore, RNA-silencing suppression (RSS) activity of HC-Pro-D193Y was significantly reduced in Nicotiana benthamiana. Here, we examine the effect of expression of heterologous suppressors of RNA silencing, i.e., tomato bushy stunt virus p19, cucumber mosaic virus 2b, and their mutants, on the virulence of the ClYVV point mutant with D193Y (Cl-D193Y) in pea. P19 and 2b fully and partially complemented Cl-D193Y multiplication and virulence, including lethal systemic HR in pea, respectively, but the P19 and 2b mutants with defects in their RSS activity did not. Our findings strongly suggest that the D193Y mutation exclusively affects RSS activity of HC-Pro and that RSS activity is necessary for ClYVV multiplication and virulence in pea. PMID:22398917

  15. A Fusarium graminearum xylanase expressed during wheat infection is a necrotizing factor but is not essential for virulence.

    PubMed

    Sella, Luca; Gazzetti, Katia; Faoro, Franco; Odorizzi, Silvana; D'Ovidio, Renato; Schäfer, Wilhelm; Favaron, Francesco

    2013-03-01

    Fusarium graminearum is the fungal pathogen mainly responsible for Fusarium head blight (FHB) of cereal crops, which attacks wheat spikes, reducing crop production and quality of grain by producing trichothecene mycotoxins. Several cytohistological studies showed that spike infection is associated with the production of cell wall degrading enzymes. Wheat tissue, as in other commelinoid monocot plants, is particularly rich in xylan which can be hydrolyzed by fungal endo-1,4-β-xylanase. The FG_03624 is one of the most expressed xylanase genes in wheat spikes 3 days after inoculation and was heterologously expressed in the yeast Pichia pastoris. The recombinant protein (22.7 kDa) possessed xylanase activity and induced cell death and hydrogen peroxide accumulation in wheat leaves infiltrated with 10 ng/μl or in wheat lemma surface treated with 20 ng/μl. This effect reflects that observed with other described fungal xylanases (from Trichoderma reesei, Trichoderma viride and Botrytis cinerea) with which the FG_03624 protein shares a stretch of amino acids reported as essential for elicitation of necrotic responses. Several F. graminearum mutants with the FG_03624 gene disrupted were obtained, and showed about 40% reduction of xylanase activity in comparison to the wild type when grown in culture with xylan as carbon source. However, they were fully virulent when assayed by single floret inoculation on wheat cvs. Bobwhite and Nandu. This is the first report of a xylanase able to induce hypersensitive-like symptoms on a monocot plant. PMID:23337356

  16. Transcriptome of Proteus mirabilis in the murine urinary tract: virulence and nitrogen assimilation gene expression.

    PubMed

    Pearson, Melanie M; Yep, Alejandra; Smith, Sara N; Mobley, Harry L T

    2011-07-01

    The enteric bacterium Proteus mirabilis is a common cause of complicated urinary tract infections. In this study, microarrays were used to analyze P. mirabilis gene expression in vivo from experimentally infected mice. Urine was collected at 1, 3, and 7 days postinfection, and RNA was isolated from bacteria in the urine for transcriptional analysis. Across nine microarrays, 471 genes were upregulated and 82 were downregulated in vivo compared to in vitro broth culture. Genes upregulated in vivo encoded mannose-resistant Proteus-like (MR/P) fimbriae, urease, iron uptake systems, amino acid and peptide transporters, pyruvate metabolism enzymes, and a portion of the tricarboxylic acid (TCA) cycle enzymes. Flagella were downregulated. Ammonia assimilation gene glnA (glutamine synthetase) was repressed in vivo, while gdhA (glutamate dehydrogenase) was upregulated in vivo. Contrary to our expectations, ammonia availability due to urease activity in P. mirabilis did not drive this gene expression. A gdhA mutant was growth deficient in minimal medium with citrate as the sole carbon source, and loss of gdhA resulted in a significant fitness defect in the mouse model of urinary tract infection. Unlike Escherichia coli, which represses gdhA and upregulates glnA in vivo and cannot utilize citrate, the data suggest that P. mirabilis uses glutamate dehydrogenase to monitor carbon-nitrogen balance, and this ability contributes to the pathogenic potential of P. mirabilis in the urinary tract. PMID:21505083

  17. Identification of differentially expressed proteins in porcine alveolar macrophages infected with virulent/attenuated strains of porcine reproductive and respiratory syndrome virus.

    PubMed

    Zhou, Yan-Jun; Zhu, Jian-Ping; Zhou, Tao; Cheng, Qun; Yu, Ling-Xue; Wang, Ya-Xin; Yang, Shen; Jiang, Yi-Feng; Tong, Wu; Gao, Fei; Yu, Hai; Li, Guo-Xin; Tong, Guang-Zhi

    2014-01-01

    The highly pathogenic porcine reproductive and respiratory syndrome virus (HP-PRRSV) is still a serious threat to the swine industry. However, the pathogenic mechanism of HP-PRRSV remains unclear. We infected host porcine alveolar macrophages (PAMs) with the virulent HuN4 strain and the attenuated HuN4-F112 strain and then utilized fluorescent two-dimensional difference gel electrophoresis (2D-DIGE) to screen for intracellular proteins that were differentially expressed in host cells infected with the two strains. There were 153 proteins with significant different expression (P<0.01) observed, 42 of which were subjected to mass spectrometry, and 24 proteins were identified. PAM cells infected with the virulent strain showed upregulated expression of pyruvate kinase M2 (PKM2), heat shock protein beta-1 (HSPB1), and proteasome subunit alpha type 6 (PSMA6), which were downregulated in cells infected with the attenuated strain. The upregulation of PKM2 provides sufficient energy for viral replication, and the upregulation of HSPB1 inhibits host cell apoptosis and therefore facilitates mass replication of the virulent strain, while the upregulation of PSMA6 facilitates the evasion of immune surveillance by the virus. Studying on those molecules mentioned above may be able to help us to understand some unrevealed details of HP-PRRSV infection, and then help us to decrease its threat to the swine industry in the future. PMID:24465692

  18. Identification of Differentially Expressed Proteins in Porcine Alveolar Macrophages Infected with Virulent/Attenuated Strains of Porcine Reproductive and Respiratory Syndrome Virus

    PubMed Central

    Zhou, Tao; Cheng, Qun; Yu, Ling-Xue; Wang, Ya-Xin; Yang, Shen; Jiang, Yi-Feng; Tong, Wu; Gao, Fei; Yu, Hai; Li, Guo-Xin; Tong, Guang-Zhi

    2014-01-01

    The highly pathogenic porcine reproductive and respiratory syndrome virus (HP-PRRSV) is still a serious threat to the swine industry. However, the pathogenic mechanism of HP-PRRSV remains unclear. We infected host porcine alveolar macrophages (PAMs) with the virulent HuN4 strain and the attenuated HuN4-F112 strain and then utilized fluorescent two-dimensional difference gel electrophoresis (2D-DIGE) to screen for intracellular proteins that were differentially expressed in host cells infected with the two strains. There were 153 proteins with significant different expression (P<0.01) observed, 42 of which were subjected to mass spectrometry, and 24 proteins were identified. PAM cells infected with the virulent strain showed upregulated expression of pyruvate kinase M2 (PKM2), heat shock protein beta-1 (HSPB1), and proteasome subunit alpha type 6 (PSMA6), which were downregulated in cells infected with the attenuated strain. The upregulation of PKM2 provides sufficient energy for viral replication, and the upregulation of HSPB1 inhibits host cell apoptosis and therefore facilitates mass replication of the virulent strain, while the upregulation of PSMA6 facilitates the evasion of immune surveillance by the virus. Studying on those molecules mentioned above may be able to help us to understand some unrevealed details of HP-PRRSV infection, and then help us to decrease its threat to the swine industry in the future. PMID:24465692

  19. The Abi-domain protein Abx1 interacts with the CovS histidine kinase to control virulence gene expression in group B Streptococcus.

    PubMed

    Firon, Arnaud; Tazi, Asmaa; Da Cunha, Violette; Brinster, Sophie; Sauvage, Elisabeth; Dramsi, Shaynoor; Golenbock, Douglas T; Glaser, Philippe; Poyart, Claire; Trieu-Cuot, Patrick

    2013-02-01

    Group B Streptococcus (GBS), a common commensal of the female genital tract, is the leading cause of invasive infections in neonates. Expression of major GBS virulence factors, such as the hemolysin operon cyl, is regulated directly at the transcriptional level by the CovSR two-component system. Using a random genetic approach, we identified a multi-spanning transmembrane protein, Abx1, essential for the production of the GBS hemolysin. Despite its similarity to eukaryotic CaaX proteases, the Abx1 function is not involved in a post-translational modification of the GBS hemolysin. Instead, we demonstrate that Abx1 regulates transcription of several virulence genes, including those comprising the hemolysin operon, by a CovSR-dependent mechanism. By combining genetic analyses, transcriptome profiling, and site-directed mutagenesis, we showed that Abx1 is a regulator of the histidine kinase CovS. Overexpression of Abx1 is sufficient to activate virulence gene expression through CovS, overcoming the need for an additional signal. Conversely, the absence of Abx1 has the opposite effect on virulence gene expression consistent with CovS locked in a kinase-competent state. Using a bacterial two-hybrid system, direct interaction between Abx1 and CovS was mapped specifically to CovS domains involved in signal processing. We demonstrate that the CovSR two-component system is the core of a signaling pathway integrating the regulation of CovS by Abx1 in addition to the regulation of CovR by the serine/threonine kinase Stk1. In conclusion, our study reports a regulatory function for Abx1, a member of a large protein family with a characteristic Abi-domain, which forms a signaling complex with the histidine kinase CovS in GBS. PMID:23436996

  20. The global response regulator ExpA controls virulence gene expression through RsmA-mediated and RsmA-independent pathways in Pectobacterium wasabiae SCC3193.

    PubMed

    Broberg, M; Lee, G W; Nykyri, J; Lee, Y H; Pirhonen, M; Palva, E T

    2014-03-01

    ExpA (GacA) is a global response regulator that controls the expression of major virulence genes, such as those encoding plant cell wall-degrading enzymes (PCWDEs) in the model soft rot phytopathogen Pectobacterium wasabiae SCC3193. Several studies with pectobacteria as well as related phytopathogenic gammaproteobacteria, such as Dickeya and Pseudomonas, suggest that the control of virulence by ExpA and its homologues is executed partly by modulating the activity of RsmA, an RNA-binding posttranscriptional regulator. To elucidate the extent of the overlap between the ExpA and RsmA regulons in P. wasabiae, we characterized both regulons by microarray analysis. To do this, we compared the transcriptomes of the wild-type strain, an expA mutant, an rsmA mutant, and an expA rsmA double mutant. The microarray data for selected virulence-related genes were confirmed through quantitative reverse transcription (qRT-PCR). Subsequently, assays were performed to link the observed transcriptome differences to changes in bacterial phenotypes such as growth, motility, PCWDE production, and virulence in planta. An extensive overlap between the ExpA and RsmA regulons was observed, suggesting that a substantial portion of ExpA regulation appears to be mediated through RsmA. However, a number of genes involved in the electron transport chain and oligogalacturonide metabolism, among other processes, were identified as being regulated by ExpA independently of RsmA. These results suggest that ExpA may only partially impact fitness and virulence via RsmA. PMID:24441162

  1. The Global Response Regulator ExpA Controls Virulence Gene Expression through RsmA-Mediated and RsmA-Independent Pathways in Pectobacterium wasabiae SCC3193

    PubMed Central

    Broberg, M.; Lee, G. W.; Nykyri, J.; Lee, Y. H.; Pirhonen, M.

    2014-01-01

    ExpA (GacA) is a global response regulator that controls the expression of major virulence genes, such as those encoding plant cell wall-degrading enzymes (PCWDEs) in the model soft rot phytopathogen Pectobacterium wasabiae SCC3193. Several studies with pectobacteria as well as related phytopathogenic gammaproteobacteria, such as Dickeya and Pseudomonas, suggest that the control of virulence by ExpA and its homologues is executed partly by modulating the activity of RsmA, an RNA-binding posttranscriptional regulator. To elucidate the extent of the overlap between the ExpA and RsmA regulons in P. wasabiae, we characterized both regulons by microarray analysis. To do this, we compared the transcriptomes of the wild-type strain, an expA mutant, an rsmA mutant, and an expA rsmA double mutant. The microarray data for selected virulence-related genes were confirmed through quantitative reverse transcription (qRT-PCR). Subsequently, assays were performed to link the observed transcriptome differences to changes in bacterial phenotypes such as growth, motility, PCWDE production, and virulence in planta. An extensive overlap between the ExpA and RsmA regulons was observed, suggesting that a substantial portion of ExpA regulation appears to be mediated through RsmA. However, a number of genes involved in the electron transport chain and oligogalacturonide metabolism, among other processes, were identified as being regulated by ExpA independently of RsmA. These results suggest that ExpA may only partially impact fitness and virulence via RsmA. PMID:24441162

  2. Recombinant expression and antigenic properties of a 32-kilodalton extracellular alkaline protease, representing a possible virulence factor from Aspergillus fumigatus.

    PubMed Central

    Moser, M; Menz, G; Blaser, K; Crameri, R

    1994-01-01

    A 32-kDa nonglycosylated alkaline protease (EC 3.4.1.14) with elastolytic activity, secreted by the opportunistic pathogen Aspergillus fumigatus ATCC 42202, is suggested to be a virulence factor of this fungus. The enzyme is a serine protease of the subtilisin family, and its cDNA nucleotide sequence has recently been reported. We have cloned the cDNA encoding the mature protease into a high-level Escherichia coli expression plasmid and produced the recombinant protease as a fusion protein with a six-adjacent-histidine affinity tag at the carboxy terminus. Subsequently, the recombinant protease was purified to homogeneity, with affinity chromatography yielding 30 to 40 mg of recombinant protease per liter of E. coli culture. Refolded recombinant protease, in comparison with native protease, demonstrated weak enzymatic activity but similar immunochemical characteristics as analyzed by antigen-specific enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA), competition ELISA, and immunoblotting assays. To assess the allergenic potential of the protease, sera from patients with allergic bronchopulmonary aspergillosis and sera from healthy control individuals were analyzed by ELISA and immunoblotting techniques. Sera from patients with allergic bronchopulmonary aspergillosis did not have protease-specific immunoglobulin E (IgE) antibodies and, remarkably, did not show significantly elevated protease-specific IgG antibody levels compared with those in sera from healthy control individuals. This suggests that the alkaline protease from A. fumigatus does not elicit IgE antibodies and has weak immunogenicity, a property which may explain fungus persistence in allergic individuals. Images PMID:8112866

  3. A Naturally Occurring Mutation in ropB Suppresses SpeB Expression and Reduces M1T1 Group A Streptococcal Systemic Virulence

    PubMed Central

    Hollands, Andrew; Aziz, Ramy K.; Kansal, Rita; Kotb, Malak; Nizet, Victor; Walker, Mark J.

    2008-01-01

    Epidemiological studies of group A streptococcus (GAS) have noted an inverse relationship between SpeB expression and invasive disease. However, the role of SpeB in the course of infection is still unclear. In this study we utilize a SpeB-negative M1T1 clinical isolate, 5628, with a naturally occurring mutation in the gene encoding the regulator RopB, to elucidate the role of RopB and SpeB in systemic virulence. Allelic exchange mutagenesis was used to replace the mutated ropB allele in 5628 with the intact allele from the well characterized isolate 5448. The inverse allelic exchange was also performed to replace the intact ropB in 5448 with the mutated allele from 5628. An intact ropB was found to be essential for SpeB expression. While the ropB mutation was shown to have no effect on hemolysis of RBC's, extracellular DNase activity or survival in the presence of neutrophils, strains with the mutated ropB allele were less virulent in murine systemic models of infection. An isogenic SpeB knockout strain containing an intact RopB showed similarly reduced virulence. Microarray analysis found genes of the SpeB operon to be the primary target of RopB regulation. These data show that an intact RopB and efficient SpeB production are necessary for systemic infection with GAS. PMID:19116661

  4. A naturally occurring mutation in ropB suppresses SpeB expression and reduces M1T1 group A streptococcal systemic virulence.

    PubMed

    Hollands, Andrew; Aziz, Ramy K; Kansal, Rita; Kotb, Malak; Nizet, Victor; Walker, Mark J

    2008-01-01

    Epidemiological studies of group A streptococcus (GAS) have noted an inverse relationship between SpeB expression and invasive disease. However, the role of SpeB in the course of infection is still unclear. In this study we utilize a SpeB-negative M1T1 clinical isolate, 5628, with a naturally occurring mutation in the gene encoding the regulator RopB, to elucidate the role of RopB and SpeB in systemic virulence. Allelic exchange mutagenesis was used to replace the mutated ropB allele in 5628 with the intact allele from the well characterized isolate 5448. The inverse allelic exchange was also performed to replace the intact ropB in 5448 with the mutated allele from 5628. An intact ropB was found to be essential for SpeB expression. While the ropB mutation was shown to have no effect on hemolysis of RBC's, extracellular DNase activity or survival in the presence of neutrophils, strains with the mutated ropB allele were less virulent in murine systemic models of infection. An isogenic SpeB knockout strain containing an intact RopB showed similarly reduced virulence. Microarray analysis found genes of the SpeB operon to be the primary target of RopB regulation. These data show that an intact RopB and efficient SpeB production are necessary for systemic infection with GAS. PMID:19116661

  5. Pseudomonas aeruginosa virulence expression is directly activated by morphine and is capable of causing lethal gut derived sepsis in mice during chronic morphine administration

    PubMed Central

    Babrowski, Trissa; Holbrook, Christopher; Moss, Jonathan; Gottlieb, Lawrence; Valuckaite, Vesta; Zaborin, Alexander; Poroyko, Valeriy; Liu, Donald C.; Zaborina, Olga; Alverdy, John C.

    2011-01-01

    OBJECTIVE This study was designed to examine the effect of morphine administration on the intestinal mucus barrier and determine its direct effect on the virulence and lethality of Pseudomonas aeruginosa, one of the most frequent pathogens to colonize the gut of critically ill patients. SUMMARY BACKGROUND DATA Surgical injury is associated with significant exposure of host tissues to morphine from both endogenous release as well as its use as a potent analgesic agent. Morphine use in surgical patients exposed to extreme physiologic stress is well established to result in increased infection risk. Although morphine is a known immunosuppressant, whether it directly induces virulence expression and lethality in microbes that colonize the human gut remains unknown. METHODS Mice were implanted with a slow release morphine or placebo pellet with and without intestinal inoculation of P. aeruginosa created by direct cecal injection. Mucus production and epithelial integrity was assessed in cecal tissue via Alcian Blue staining and histological analysis. In vivo and in vitro P. aeruginosa virulence expression was examined using reporter strains tagged to the epithelial barrier disrupting protein PA-I lectin. P. aeruginosa chemotaxis toward morphine was also assayed in vitro. Finally the direct effect of morphine to induce PA-I lectin expression was determined in the absence and presence of methylnaltrexone, a mu opioid receptor antagonist. RESULTS Mice intestinally inoculated with P. aeruginosa and implanted with a morphine pellet demonstrated significant suppression of intestinal mucus, disrupted intestinal epithelium and enhanced mortality whereas exposure of mice to either systemic morphine or intestinal P. aeruginosa alone enhanced intestinal mucus without mortality suggesting a shift in P. aeruginosa during morphine exposure to a mucus suppressing, barrier disrupting, and lethal phenotype. Direct exposure of P. aeruginosa to morphine in vitro confirmed that morphine

  6. Association and Virulence Gene Expression Vary among Serotype III Group B Streptococcus Isolates following Exposure to Decidual and Lung Epithelial Cells

    PubMed Central

    Korir, Michelle L.; Knupp, David; LeMerise, Kathryn; Boldenow, Erica; Loch-Caruso, Rita; Aronoff, David M.

    2014-01-01

    Group B Streptococcus (GBS) causes severe disease in neonates, the elderly, and immunocompromised individuals. GBS species are highly diverse and can be classified by serotype and multilocus sequence typing. Sequence type 17 (ST-17) strains cause invasive neonatal disease more frequently than strains of other STs. Attachment and invasion of host cells are key steps in GBS pathogenesis. We investigated whether four serotype III strains representing ST-17 (two strains), ST-19, and ST-23 differ in their abilities to attach to and invade both decidual cells and lung epithelial cells. Virulence gene expression following host cell association and exposure to amnion cells was also tested. The ST-17 strains differed in their abilities to attach to and invade decidual cells, whereas there were no differences with lung epithelial cells. The ST-19 and ST-23 strains, however, attached to and invaded decidual cells less than both ST-17 strains. Although the ST-23 strain attached to lung epithelial cells better than ST-17 and -19 strains, none of the strains effectively invaded the lung epithelial cells. Notably, the association with host cells resulted in the differential expression of several virulence genes relative to basal expression levels. Similar expression patterns of some genes were observed regardless of cell type used. Collectively, these results show that GBS strains differ in their abilities to attach to distinct host cell types and express key virulence genes that are relevant to the disease process. Enhancing our understanding of pathogenic mechanisms could aid in the identification of novel therapeutic targets or vaccine candidates that could potentially decrease morbidity and mortality associated with neonatal infections. PMID:25135682

  7. FliZ is a global regulatory protein affecting the expression of flagellar and virulence genes in individual Xenorhabdus nematophila bacterial cells.

    PubMed

    Jubelin, Grégory; Lanois, Anne; Severac, Dany; Rialle, Stéphanie; Longin, Cyrille; Gaudriault, Sophie; Givaudan, Alain

    2013-10-01

    Heterogeneity in the expression of various bacterial genes has been shown to result in the presence of individuals with different phenotypes within clonal bacterial populations. The genes specifying motility and flagellar functions are coordinately regulated and form a complex regulon, the flagellar regulon. Complex interplay has recently been demonstrated in the regulation of flagellar and virulence gene expression in many bacterial pathogens. We show here that FliZ, a DNA-binding protein, plays a key role in the insect pathogen, Xenorhabdus nematophila, affecting not only hemolysin production and virulence in insects, but efficient swimming motility. RNA-Seq analysis identified FliZ as a global regulatory protein controlling the expression of 278 Xenorhabdus genes either directly or indirectly. FliZ is required for the efficient expression of all flagellar genes, probably through its positive feedback loop, which controls expression of the flhDC operon, the master regulator of the flagellar circuit. FliZ also up- or downregulates the expression of numerous genes encoding non-flagellar proteins potentially involved in key steps of the Xenorhabdus lifecycle. Single-cell analysis revealed the bimodal expression of six identified markers of the FliZ regulon during exponential growth of the bacterial population. In addition, a combination of fluorescence-activated cell sorting and RT-qPCR quantification showed that this bimodality generated a mixed population of cells either expressing ("ON state") or not expressing ("OFF state") FliZ-dependent genes. Moreover, studies of a bacterial population exposed to a graded series of FliZ concentrations showed that FliZ functioned as a rheostat, controlling the rate of transition between the "OFF" and "ON" states in individuals. FliZ thus plays a key role in cell fate decisions, by transiently creating individuals with different potentials for motility and host interactions. PMID:24204316

  8. Virulence Determination

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    This chapter reviews the in vitro and in vivo assays that are available for determination of pathogenic potential of Listeria monocytogenes bacteria, highlighting the value of using multiplex PCR for rapid and accurate assessment of listerial virulence....

  9. A Two-Component Regulatory System, CsrR-CsrS, Represses Expression of Three Streptococcus pyogenes Virulence Factors, Hyaluronic Acid Capsule, Streptolysin S, and Pyrogenic Exotoxin B

    PubMed Central

    Heath, Andrew; DiRita, Victor J.; Barg, Neil L.; Engleberg, N. Cary

    1999-01-01

    Certain Tn916 insertions in the chromosome of an M1-type, nonmucoid Streptococcus pyogenes isolate (MGAS166) were previously shown to result in stable mucoidy with increased expression of the capsular synthetic genes. The transposon insertions in these strains are directly upstream of an apparent operon encoding a two-component regulatory system, designated csrR-csrS. Compared with MGAS166, these mucoid mutants are more hemolytic and cause significantly more tissue damage in a murine model of skin infection. To extend these observations, we constructed an in-frame deletion in the gene encoding the response regulator, csrR, and we evaluated the expression of other known S. pyogenes virulence factors. We discovered that csrR mutants have enhanced transcription of sagA, a gene associated with streptolysin S (SLS) and speB, the gene encoding pyrogenic exotoxin B (SpeB). The mutants also express substantially higher SLS activity and SpeB antigen in late-exponential-phase cultures. There is no change in expression of emm, scpA, sic, or cpa (genes encoding other S. pyogenes virulence factors). CsrR− strains but not the wild-type parental strain produce necrotizing lesions in a mouse model of subcutaneous infection. A double mutant with deletions in both csrR and the capsular synthesis genes caused fewer and smaller necrotic skin lesions than the csrR mutants. However, this nonmucoid csrR strain was more likely than the wild type to yield necrotic lesions, suggesting that mucoidy contributes to virulence in this model of infection but that there are other csrR-regulated factors involved in the production of necrotic lesions. PMID:10496909

  10. A two-component regulatory system, CsrR-CsrS, represses expression of three Streptococcus pyogenes virulence factors, hyaluronic acid capsule, streptolysin S, and pyrogenic exotoxin B.

    PubMed

    Heath, A; DiRita, V J; Barg, N L; Engleberg, N C

    1999-10-01

    Certain Tn916 insertions in the chromosome of an M1-type, nonmucoid Streptococcus pyogenes isolate (MGAS166) were previously shown to result in stable mucoidy with increased expression of the capsular synthetic genes. The transposon insertions in these strains are directly upstream of an apparent operon encoding a two-component regulatory system, designated csrR-csrS. Compared with MGAS166, these mucoid mutants are more hemolytic and cause significantly more tissue damage in a murine model of skin infection. To extend these observations, we constructed an in-frame deletion in the gene encoding the response regulator, csrR, and we evaluated the expression of other known S. pyogenes virulence factors. We discovered that csrR mutants have enhanced transcription of sagA, a gene associated with streptolysin S (SLS) and speB, the gene encoding pyrogenic exotoxin B (SpeB). The mutants also express substantially higher SLS activity and SpeB antigen in late-exponential-phase cultures. There is no change in expression of emm, scpA, sic, or cpa (genes encoding other S. pyogenes virulence factors). CsrR- strains but not the wild-type parental strain produce necrotizing lesions in a mouse model of subcutaneous infection. A double mutant with deletions in both csrR and the capsular synthesis genes caused fewer and smaller necrotic skin lesions than the csrR mutants. However, this nonmucoid csrR strain was more likely than the wild type to yield necrotic lesions, suggesting that mucoidy contributes to virulence in this model of infection but that there are other csrR-regulated factors involved in the production of necrotic lesions. PMID:10496909

  11. Relationship between MMP Expression and Virulence of Dengue Virus Type-2 in Infected Mosquito and Mammalian Cells.

    PubMed

    Leaungwutiwong, Pornsawan; Kelley, James F; Sachair, Aucha; Jittmittraphap, Akanitt; Luplertlop, Natthanej

    2016-01-01

    Dengue virus infections are mostly asymptomatic but can produce a mild, self-limiting acute febrile illness, dengue fever, or a life threatening severe illness, dengue hemorrhagic fever. Dengue hemorrhagic fever is associated with increased vascular permeability partly as a result of elevated levels of matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs). We characterized MMP-2 and MMP-9 production in mosquito and mammalian cells after infection with three strains of dengue virus type-2 (D2-) ranging in virulence: 16681, the prototype New Guinea C (NGC), and PDK-53 vaccine strain. These strains were used to test variations in viral properties in vaccine candidates and confirm the production of MMP as a possible marker for virulence. A zymogram gelatinolytic activity assay was used to assess MMP-2 and MMP-9 production. We found that dengue-infected mosquito and mammalian cell lines had unique MMP-2 and MMP-9 production patterns depending on the virulence of the infecting dengue strain and the duration infection. MMP levels were highest after infection with the most virulent strain D2-16681, followed by the prototype NGC strain, in both cell lines. The MMP levels appeared to correspond with the relative amounts of infectious virions produced later in infection. Our findings improve our understanding of dengue pathogenesis and may facilitate the selection of markers to further the development of dengue vaccines. PMID:26073730

  12. Expression of a Wheat Gene Encoding a Type-1 Lipid Transfer Protein is Suppressed by Virulent Hessian Fly Larval Feeding

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The response of wheat to attack by the Hessian fly is mediated by a gene-for-gene recognition involving wheat R genes and Hessian fly avr genes. Interactions are characterized as compatible when virulent Hessian fly larvae establish feeding sites and survive on wheat plants and incompatible when avi...

  13. Patterns of Cellular Gene Expression in Swine Macrophages Infected with Highly Virulent Classical Swine Fever Virus Strain Brescia

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Experimental exposure of swine to highly virulent Classical Swine Fever Virus (CSFV) strain Brescia causes an invariably fatal disease of all infected animals by 8 to 14 days post-infection. Host mechanisms involved in this severe outcome of infection have not been clearly established. To understa...

  14. DExD-box RNA-helicases in Listeria monocytogenes are important for growth, ribosomal maturation, rRNA processing and virulence factor expression

    PubMed Central

    Bäreclev, Caroline; Vaitkevicius, Karolis; Netterling, Sakura; Johansson, Jörgen

    2014-01-01

    RNA-helicases are proteins required for the unwinding of occluding secondary RNA structures, especially at low temperatures. In this work, we have deleted all 4 DExD-box RNA helicases in various combinations in the Gram-positive pathogen Listeria monocytogenes. Our results show that 3 out of 4 RNA-helicases were important for growth at low temperatures, whereas the effect was less prominent at 37°C. Over-expression of one RNA-helicase, Lmo1450, was able to overcome the reduced growth of the quadruple mutant strain at temperatures above 26°C, but not at lower temperatures. The maturation of ribosomes was affected in different degrees in the various strains at 20°C, whereas the effect was marginal at 37°C. This was accompanied by an increased level of immature 23S rRNA precursors in some of the RNA-helicase mutants at low temperatures. Although the expression of the PrfA regulated virulence factors ActA and LLO decreased in the quadruple mutant strain, this strain showed a slightly increased infection ability. Interestingly, even though the level of the virulence factor LLO was decreased in the quadruple mutant strain as compared with the wild-type strain, the hly-transcript (encoding LLO) was increased. Hence, our results could suggest a role for the RNA-helicases during translation. In this work, we show that DExD-box RNA-helicases are involved in bacterial virulence gene-expression and infection of eukaryotic cells. PMID:25590644

  15. Generation of Recombinant Viral Hemorrhagic Septicemia Virus (rVHSV) Expressing Two Foreign Proteins and Effect of Lengthened Viral Genome on Viral Growth and In Vivo Virulence.

    PubMed

    Kim, Min Sun; Lee, Su Jin; Kim, Dong Soo; Kim, Ki Hong

    2016-04-01

    In this study, a new recombinant VHSV (rVHSV-Arfp-Bgfp) was generated by insertion of a red fluorescent protein (RFP) gene between N and P genes, a green fluorescent protein (GFP) gene between P and M genes of VHSV genome, the expression of each heterologous gene in infected cells, and effects of the lengthened recombinant VHSV's genome on the replication ability and in vivo virulence to olive flounder (Paralichthys olivaceus) fingerlings were compared with previously generated rVHSVs (rVHSV-wild, rVHSV-Arfp, and rVHSV-Brfp). The expression of RFP and GFP in cells infected with rVHSV-Arfp-Bgfp was verified through fluorescent microscopy and FACS analysis. In the viral growth analysis, rVHSV-Arfp and rVHSV-Brfp showed significantly lower viral titers than rVHSV-wild, and the replication of rVHSV-Arfp-Bgfp was significantly decreased compared to that of even rVHSV-Arfp or rVHSV-Brfp. These results suggest that the genome length is a critical factor for the determination of rVHSVs replication efficiency. In the in vivo virulence experiment, the cumulative mortalities of olive flounder fingerlings infected with each rVHSV were inversely proportional to the length of the viral genome, suggesting that decreased viral growth rate due to the lengthened viral genome is accompanied with the decrease of in vivo virulence of rVHSVs. Recombinant viruses expressing multiple foreign antigens can be used for the development of combined vaccines. However, as the present rVHSV-Arfp-Bgfp still possesses an ability to kill hosts (although very weakened), researches on the producing more attenuated viruses or propagation-deficient replicon particles are needed to solve safety-related problems. PMID:26921191

  16. Avirulent K88 (F4)+ Escherichia coli strains constructed to express modified enterotoxins protect young piglets from challenge with a virulent enterotoxigenic Escherichia coli strain that expresses the same adhesion and enterotoxins.

    PubMed

    Santiago-Mateo, Kristina; Zhao, Mojun; Lin, Jun; Zhang, Weiping; Francis, David H

    2012-10-12

    Virulence of enterotoxigenic Escherichia coli (ETEC) is associated with fimbrial adhesins and enterotoxins such as heat-labile (LT) and/or heat-stable (ST) enterotoxins. Previous studies using a cell culture model suggest that exclusion of ETEC from attachment to epithelial cells requires expression of both an adhesin such as K88 (F4) fimbriae, and LT. To test the ability of non-pathogenic E. coli constructs to exclude virulent ETEC sufficiently to prevent clinical disease, we utilized a piglet ETEC challenge model. Thirty-nine 5-day-old piglets were inoculated with a placebo (control), or with either of the three K88(+)E. coli strains isogenic with regard to modified LT expression: 8017 (pBR322 plasmid vector control), non-toxigenic mutant 8221 (LT(R192G)) in pBR322, or 8488, with the LT gene fused to the STb gene in pBR322 (LT(R192G)-STb). Piglets were challenged with virulent ETEC Strain 3030-2 (K88(+)/LT/STb) 24h post-inoculation. K88ac receptor-positive piglets in the control group developed diarrhea and became dehydrated 12-24h post-challenge. Piglets inoculated with 8221 or 8488 did not exhibit clinical signs of ETEC disease; most piglets inoculated with 8017 showed diarrhea. Control pigs exhibited significant weight loss, increased blood total protein, and higher numbers of colony-forming units of 3030-2 E. coli in washed ileum and jejunum than treated pigs. This study shows for the first time that pre-inoculation with an avirulent strain expressing adhesive fimbriae and a non-toxic form of LT provides significant short term protection from challenge with a virulent ETEC strain that expresses the same fimbrial adhesion and enterotoxin. PMID:22541162

  17. Investigating boundaries of survival, growth and expression of genes associated with stress and virulence of Listeria monocytogenes in response to acid and osmotic stress.

    PubMed

    Makariti, I P; Printezi, A; Kapetanakou, A E; Zeaki, N; Skandamis, P N

    2015-02-01

    The objective of this study was to correlate the relative transcription of Listeria monocytogenes (strains C5, 6179) stress- (gad2, sigB) and virulence- (prfA) associated genes following habituation at twenty-five pH (4.8, 5.0, 5.2, 5.5, 6.4) and NaCl (2, 4, 6, 8, 10% w/v) combinations at 7 °C, with the survival against subsequent exposure to severe acid stress (pH 2.0 at 37 °C). Our findings pointed out the inter-strain variation governing growth inhibiting conditions (pH ≤5.0 and NaCl ≥6%), where C5 was less affected (a reduction of 2.0-3.0 log CFU/mL) than 6179 which was reduced by 4.0-6.0 log CFU/mL at the end of storage. Nevertheless, the higher the habituation at the growth permitting (pH ≥5.5; NaCl ≤4% w/v) or growth inhibiting conditions, the higher the acquired acid resistance or sensitization, respectively. At day 2, gad2 increased relative transcriptional levels are more related to elevated acid resistance, while at day 6 both gad2 transcriptional levels and upregulation of sigB were correlated to low log reductions and high DpH:2.0-values against severe acid stress. Regarding virulence, the increased transcriptional levels of prfA at day 2 were correlated to adverse pH and NaCl combinations, while prolonged stay in suboptimal conditions as well as exposure to severe acid stress resulted in general activation of the virulence regulator. Such data could definitely contribute in designing safe intervention strategies and additionally integrate -omics aspects in quantitative microbial risk assessment. PMID:25500389

  18. Surface-Associated Lipoproteins Link Enterococcus faecalis Virulence to Colitogenic Activity in IL-10-Deficient Mice Independent of Their Expression Levels

    PubMed Central

    Lengfelder, Isabella; Lagkouvardos, Ilias; Steck, Natalie; Roh, Jung H.; Tchaptchet, Sandrine; Bao, Yinyin; Hansen, Jonathan J.; Huebner, Johannes; Carroll, Ian M.; Murray, Barbara E.; Sartor, R. Balfour; Haller, Dirk

    2015-01-01

    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-free Manduca sexta larvae

  19. Heterogenic virulence in a diarrheagenic Escherichia coli: evidence for an EPEC expressing heat-labile toxin of ETEC.

    PubMed

    Dutta, Sanjucta; Pazhani, Gururaja P; Nataro, James P; Ramamurthy, Thandavarayan

    2015-01-01

    We have encountered an Escherichia coli strain isolated from a child with acute diarrhea. This strain harbored eae and elt genes encoding for E. coli attaching and effacing property and heat-labile enterotoxin of EPEC and ETEC, respectively. Due to the presence of these distinct virulence factors, we named this uncommon strain as EPEC/ETEC hybrid. The elt gene was identified in a conjugally transferable plasmid of the EPEC/ETEC hybrid. In addition, several virulence genes in the locus of enterocyte effacement have been identified, which confirms that the EPEC/ETEC has an EPEC genetic background. The hybrid nature of this strain was further confirmed by using tissue culture assays. In the multi locus sequence typing (MLST) analysis, the EPEC/ETEC belonged to the sequence type ST328 and was belonging to ST278 Cplx. Sequence analysis of the plasmid DNA revealed presence of six large contigs with several insertion sequences. A phage integrase gene and the prophages of gp48 and gp49 have been found in the upstream of eltAB. In the downstream of elt, an urovirulence loci adhesion encoding (pap) cluster containing papG, and papC were also identified. Similar to other reports, we have identified a heterogenic virulence in a diarrheagenic E. coli but with different combination of genes. PMID:25465159

  20. In Vivo Expression of and Cell-Mediated Immune Responses to the Plasmid-Encoded Virulence-Associated Proteins of Rhodococcus equi in Foals▿

    PubMed Central

    Jacks, Stephanie; Giguère, Steeve; Prescott, John F.

    2007-01-01

    Rhodococcus equi is a facultative intracellular pathogen that causes pneumonia in foals but does not induce disease in adult horses. Virulence of R. equi depends on the presence of a large plasmid, which encodes a family of seven virulence-associated proteins (VapA and VapC to VapH). Eradication of R. equi from the lungs depends on gamma interferon (IFN-γ) production by T lymphocytes. The objectives of the present study were to determine the relative in vivo expression of the vap genes of R. equi in the lungs of infected foals, to determine the recall response of bronchial lymph node (BLN) lymphocytes from foals and adult horses to each of the Vap proteins, and to compare the cytokine profiles of proliferating lymphocytes between foals and adult horses. vapA, vapD, and vapG were preferentially expressed in the lungs of infected foals, and expression of these genes in the lungs was significantly (P < 0.05) higher than that achieved during in vitro growth. VapA and VapC induced the strongest lymphoproliferative responses for foals and adult horses. There was no significant difference in recall lymphoproliferative responses or IFN-γ mRNA expression by bronchial lymph node lymphocytes between foals and adults. In contrast, interleukin 4 (IL-4) expression was significantly higher for adults than for foals for each of the Vap proteins. The ratio of IFN-γ to IL-4 was significantly higher for foals than for adult horses for most Vap proteins. Therefore, foals are immunocompetent and are capable of mounting lymphoproliferative responses of the same magnitude and cytokine phenotype as those of adult horses. PMID:17301216

  1. flrA, flrB and flrC regulate adhesion by controlling the expression of critical virulence genes in Vibrio alginolyticus.

    PubMed

    Luo, Gang; Huang, Lixing; Su, Yongquan; Qin, Yingxue; Xu, Xiaojin; Zhao, Lingmin; Yan, Qingpi

    2016-01-01

    Adhesion is an important virulence trait of Vibrio alginolyticus. Bacterial adhesion is influenced by environmental conditions; however, the molecular mechanism underlying this effect remains unknown. The expression levels of flrA, flrB and flrC were significantly downregulated in adhesion-deficient V. alginolyticus strains cultured under Cu(2+), Pb(2+), Hg(2+) and low-pH stresses. Silencing these genes led to deficiencies in adhesion, motility, flagellar assembly, biofilm formation and exopolysaccharide (EPS) production. The expression levels of fliA, flgH, fliS, fliD, cheR, cheV and V12G01_22158 (Gene ID) were significantly downregulated in all of the RNAi groups, whereas the expression levels of toxT, ctxB, acfA, hlyA and tlh were upregulated in flrA- and flrC-silenced groups. These genes play a key role in the virulence mechanisms of most pathogenic Vibrio species. Furthermore, the expression of flrA, flrB and flrC was significantly influenced by temperature, salinity, starvation and pH. These results indicate that (1) flrA, flrB and flrC are important for V. alginolyticus adhesion; (2) flrA, flrB and flrC significantly influence bacterial adhesion, motility, biofilm formation and EPS production by controlling expression of key genes involved in those phenotypes; and (3) flrA, flrB and flrC regulate adhesion in the natural environment with different temperatures, pH levels, salinities and starvation time. PMID:27485498

  2. H-NS Nucleoid Protein Controls Virulence Features of Klebsiella pneumoniae by Regulating the Expression of Type 3 Pili and the Capsule Polysaccharide

    PubMed Central

    Ares, Miguel A.; Fernández-Vázquez, José L.; Rosales-Reyes, Roberto; Jarillo-Quijada, Ma. Dolores; von Bargen, Kristine; Torres, Javier; González-y-Merchand, Jorge A.; Alcántar-Curiel, María D.; De la Cruz, Miguel A.

    2016-01-01

    Klebsiella pneumoniae is an opportunistic pathogen causing nosocomial infections. Main virulence determinants of K. pneumoniae are pili, capsular polysaccharide, lipopolysaccharide, and siderophores. The histone-like nucleoid-structuring protein (H-NS) is a pleiotropic regulator found in several gram-negative pathogens. It has functions both as an architectural component of the nucleoid and as a global regulator of gene expression. We generated a Δhns mutant and evaluated the role of the H-NS nucleoid protein on the virulence features of K. pneumoniae. A Δhns mutant down-regulated the mrkA pilin gene and biofilm formation was affected. In contrast, capsule expression was derepressed in the absence of H-NS conferring a hypermucoviscous phenotype. Moreover, H-NS deficiency affected the K. pneumoniae adherence to epithelial cells such as A549 and HeLa cells. In infection experiments using RAW264.7 and THP-1 differentiated macrophages, the Δhns mutant was less phagocytized than the wild-type strain. This phenotype was likely due to the low adherence to these phagocytic cells. Taken together, our data indicate that H-NS nucleoid protein is a crucial regulator of both T3P and CPS of K. pneumoniae. PMID:26904512

  3. Development of a live, attenuated, potential vaccine strain of R. equi expressing vapA and the virR operon, and virulence assessment in the mouse.

    PubMed

    Whitehead, Ashley E; Parreira, Valeria R; Hewson, Joanne; Watson, Johanna L; Prescott, John F

    2012-01-15

    Pneumonia caused by Rhodococcus equi remains a significant problem in foals. The objective of this study was to develop a safe and efficacious attenuated strain of R. equi for eventual use in oral immunization of foals. The approach involved expression of vapA in a live, virulence plasmid-negative, strain of R. equi (strain 103-). PCR-amplified fragments of the vapA gene, with and without the upstream genes virR, orf5, vapH, orf7 and orf8 (orf4-8), were cloned into a shuttle vector pNBV1. These plasmids, named pAW48A and pAWVapA respectively, were electroporated into strain 103-. The presence of the recombinant vectors in the attenuated strain (103-) and the integrity of the inserted genes were confirmed, and both constructs expressed VapA. The virulence of the two strains was compared to that of wild type R. equi 103+ and negative controls by their intravenous inoculation into mice, followed by examination of liver clearance 4 days later. Mice inoculated with R. equi 103-, 103-/pAWVapA and 103-/pNBV1 completely cleared infection, whereas strain 103-/pAW48A persisted in 47% of mice. PMID:22088674

  4. Dual role of RsmA in the coordinated regulation of expression of virulence genes in Pectobacterium wasabiae strain SCC3193.

    PubMed

    Andresen, Liis; Frolova, Jekaterina; Põllumaa, Lee; Mäe, Andres

    2015-11-01

    The CsrA/RsmA family of post-transcriptional regulators in bacteria is involved in regulating many cellular processes, including pathogenesis. Using a bioinformatics approach, we identified an RsmA binding motif, A(N)GGA, in the Shine-Dalgarno regions of 901 genes. Among these genes with the predicted RsmA binding motif, 358 were regulated by RsmA according to our previously published gene expression profiling analysis (WT vs rsmA negative mutant; Kõiv et al., 2013). A small subset of the predicted targets known to be important as virulence factors was selected for experimental validation. RNA footprint analyses demonstrated that RsmA binds specifically to the ANGGA motif in the 5'UTR sequences of celV1, pehA, pelB, pel2 and prtW. RsmA-dependent regulation of these five genes was examined in vivo using plasmid-borne translational and transcriptional fusions with a reporter gusA gene. They were all affected negatively by RsmA. However, we demonstrated that whereas the overall effect of RsmA on celV1 and prtW was determined on both the translational and transcriptional level, expression of pectinolytic enzyme genes (pehA, pel2 and pelB) was affected mainly on the level of transcription in tested conditions. In summary, these data indicate that RsmA controls virulence by integration of its regulatory activities at various levels. PMID:26306750

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

    PubMed

    Bando, Silvia Y; Moreno, Ana C R; Albuquerque, José A T; Amhaz, Juliana M K; Moreira-Filho, Carlos A; Martinez, Marina B

    2010-09-01

    Enteroinvasive Escherichia coli (EIEC) and Shigella spp cause bacillary dysentery in humans by invading and multiplying within epithelial cells of the colonic mucosa. Although EIEC and Shigella share many genetic and biochemical similarities, the illness caused by Shigella is 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 flexneri with 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 that S. 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. PMID:20944993

  6. Two overlapping two-component systems in Xanthomonas oryzae pv. oryzae contribute to full fitness in rice by regulating virulence factors expression

    PubMed Central

    Zheng, Dehong; Yao, Xiaoyan; Duan, Meng; Luo, Yufeng; Liu, Biao; Qi, Pengyuan; Sun, Ming; Ruan, Lifang

    2016-01-01

    Two-component signal transduction systems (TCSs) are widely used by bacteria to adapt to the environment. In the present study, StoS (stress tolerance-related oxygen sensor) and SreKRS (salt response kinase, regulator, and sensor) were found to positively regulate extracellular polysaccharide (EPS) production and swarming in the rice pathogen Xanthomonas oryzae pv. oryzae (Xoo). Surprisingly, the absence of stoS or sreKRS did not attenuate virulence. To better understand the intrinsic functions of StoS and SreKRS, quantitative proteomics isobaric tags for relative and absolute quantitation (iTRAQ) was employed. Consistent with stoS and sreK mutants exhibiting a similar phenotype, the signalling circuits of StoS and SreKRS overlapped. Carbohydrate metabolism proteins and chemotaxis proteins, which could be responsible for EPS and swarming regulation, respectively, were reprogrammed in stoS and sreK mutants. Moreover, StoS and SreKRS demonstrated moderate expression of the major virulence factor, hypersensitive response and pathogenicity (Hrp) proteins through the HrpG-HrpX circuit. Most importantly, Xoo equipped with StoS and SreKRS outcompetes strains without StoS or SreKRS in co-infected rice and grows outside the host. Therefore, we propose that StoS and SreKRS adopt a novel strategy involving the moderation of Hrp protein expression and the promotion of EPS and motility to adapt to the environment. PMID:26957113

  7. Application of relative real-time PCR to detect differential expression of virulence genes in Vibrio anguillarum under standard and stressed growth conditions.

    PubMed

    Crisafi, F; Denaro, R; Genovese, M; Yakimov, M; Genovese, L

    2014-07-01

    In this study, we aimed to understand whether abiotic factors affect the expression of virulence genes in Vibrio anguillarum. We observed the in vitro responses of two Mediterranean strains of V. anguillarum to temperature, NaCl and iron concentration changes. We monitored growth performance and gene transcription levels by comparing the results obtained under stressed conditions (temperatures of 5 °C, 15 °C and 37 °C; NaCl concentrations of 3% and 5%; and iron depletion and excess) with those obtained under standard growth conditions (25 °C, 1.5% NaCl and 0.6 μm of iron). The results showed that the strains respond differently. The strain 975/I was most strongly affected by conditions of 15 °C and iron depletion; these conditions induced increased transcription levels of empA, angR and fatA. Growth of the strain 17/I was inhibited at 15 °C and in iron depletion conditions; this strain also showed dramatic changes in the transcription levels of toxR and tonB2 under increased NaCl concentrations. These results demonstrate that environmental stress affects the expression of virulence genes in V. anguillarum that have implications for the competitiveness, stress tolerance and the ability of V. anguillarum to cause infection. PMID:24033758

  8. Expression of Shiga toxin 2 (Stx2) in highly virulent Stx-producing Escherichia coli (STEC) carrying different anti-terminator (q) genes.

    PubMed

    Olavesen, Kristoffer K; Lindstedt, Bjørn-Arne; Løbersli, Inger; Brandal, Lin T

    2016-08-01

    Shiga toxins (Stx) are key virulence factors of Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli (STEC) during development of haemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS). It has been suggested that not only specific stx2 subtypes, but also the amount of Stx2 expressed might be essential for STEC pathogenicity. We aimed to investigate if various anti-terminator (q) genes might influence the expression level of Stx2 in highly virulent STEC. A multiplex PCR detecting q933, q21, and qO111 was run on 20 stx2a-positive STEC strains, of which 18 were HUS associated serotypes (HAS) and two non-HAS. Relative expression of Stx2 mRNA was assessed for all strains, both in non-induced and induced (mitomycin C) state. The HAS STEC carried either q933 (n = 8), qO111 (n = 8), or both (n = 2). In basal state, no STEC strains showed higher expression of Stx2 mRNA than the calibrator EDL933 (non-sorbitol fermenting (NSF) O157:H7carrying q933). Variations among strains were not associated with different q genes present, but rather related to specific serogroups. In induced state, O104:H4 strains (q933) showed higher Stx2 mRNA level than EDL933, whereas sorbitol fermenting (SF) O157:H- (qO111) and O121:H? (q933) STEC showed levels comparable with EDL933. An association between the presence of q933 and higher Stx2 level was seen within some HAS, but not all. Interestingly, the O103:H25 STEC strains, responsible for a HUS outbreak in Norway, carried both q933 and qO111. However, the Stx2 mRNA level in these strains was significantly lower than EDL933 in both states, indicating that other factors than the level of Stx2 might explain the aggressiveness of these bacteria. The two non-HAS STEC did not carry any of the examined q genes. In induced state, these bacteria showed the lowest Stx2 mRNA level compared to EDL933. One of the non-HAS STEC was not induced by mitomycin C, suggesting that stx2a might be located on a defect bacteriophage. No association between specific q genes and Stx2 mRNA expression

  9. A Pectate Lyase-Coding Gene Abundantly Expressed during Early Stages of Infection Is Required for Full Virulence in Alternaria brassicicola

    PubMed Central

    Cho, Yangrae; Jang, Mina; Srivastava, Akhil; Jang, Jae-Hyuk; Soung, Nak-Kyun; Ko, Sung-Kyun; Kang, Dae-Ook; Ahn, Jong Seog; Kim, Bo Yeon

    2015-01-01

    Alternaria brassicicola causes black spot disease of Brassica species. The functional importance of pectin digestion enzymes and unidentified phytotoxins in fungal pathogenesis has been suspected but not verified in A. brassicicola. The fungal transcription factor AbPf2 is essential for pathogenicity and induces 106 genes during early pathogenesis, including the pectate lyase-coding gene, PL1332. The aim of this study was to test the importance and roles of PL1332 in pathogenesis. We generated deletion strains of the PL1332 gene, produced heterologous PL1332 proteins, and evaluated their association with virulence. Deletion strains of the PL1332 gene were approximately 30% less virulent than wild-type A. brassicicola, without showing differences in colony expansion on solid media and mycelial growth in nutrient-rich liquid media or minimal media with pectins as a major carbon source. Heterologous PL1332 expressed as fusion proteins digested polygalacturons in vitro. When the fusion proteins were injected into the apoplast between leaf veins of host plants the tissues turned dark brown and soft, resembling necrotic leaf tissue. The PL1332 gene was the first example identified as a general toxin-coding gene and virulence factor among the 106 genes regulated by the transcription factor, AbPf2. It was also the first gene to have its functions investigated among the 19 pectate lyase genes and several hundred putative cell-wall degrading enzymes in A. brassicicola. These results further support the importance of the AbPf2 gene as a key pathogenesis regulator and possible target for agrochemical development. PMID:25996954

  10. RegA, an AraC-like protein, is a global transcriptional regulator that controls virulence gene expression in Citrobacter rodentium.

    PubMed

    Hart, Emily; Yang, Ji; Tauschek, Marija; Kelly, Michelle; Wakefield, Matthew J; Frankel, Gad; Hartland, Elizabeth L; Robins-Browne, Roy M

    2008-11-01

    Citrobacter rodentium is an attaching and effacing pathogen which causes transmissible colonic hyperplasia in mice. Infection with C. rodentium serves as a model for infection of humans with enteropathogenic and enterohemorrhagic Escherichia coli. To identify novel colonization factors of C. rodentium, we screened a signature-tagged mutant library of C. rodentium in mice. One noncolonizing mutant had a single transposon insertion in an open reading frame (ORF) which we designated regA because of its homology to genes encoding members of the AraC family of transcriptional regulators. Deletion of regA in C. rodentium resulted in markedly reduced colonization of the mouse intestine. Examination of lacZ transcriptional fusions using promoter regions of known and putative virulence-associated genes of C. rodentium revealed that RegA strongly stimulated transcription of two newly identified genes located close to regA, which we designated adcA and kfcC. The cloned adcA gene conferred autoaggregation and adherence to mammalian cells to E. coli strain DH5alpha, and a kfc mutation led to a reduction in the duration of intestinal colonization, but the kfc mutant was far less attenuated than the regA mutant. These results indicated that other genes of C. rodentium whose expression required activation by RegA were required for colonization. Microarray analysis revealed a number of RegA-regulated ORFs encoding proteins homologous to known colonization factors. Transcription of these putative virulence determinants was activated by RegA only in the presence of sodium bicarbonate. Taken together, these results show that RegA is a global regulator of virulence in C. rodentium which activates factors that are required for intestinal colonization. PMID:18765720

  11. Effect of Ethanol on Differential Protein Production and Expression of Potential Virulence Functions in the Opportunistic Pathogen Acinetobacter baumannii

    PubMed Central

    Nwugo, Chika C.; Arivett, Brock A.; Zimbler, Daniel L.; Gaddy, Jennifer A.; Richards, Ashley M.; Actis, Luis A.

    2012-01-01

    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. PMID:23284824

  12. Role of alkaline serine protease, asp, in vibrio alginolyticus virulence and regulation of its expression by luxO-luxR regulatory system.

    PubMed

    Rui, Haopeng; Liu, Qin; Wang, Qiyao; Ma, Yue; Liu, Huan; Shi, Cunbin; Zhang, Yuanxing

    2009-05-01

    The alkaline serine protease asp, which was shown to be a virulence factor of Vibrio alginolyticus as a purified protein, was cloned from V. alginolyticus EPGS, a strain recently isolated from moribund Epinephelus coioides in an outbreak of vibriosis in a mariculture farm of Shenzhen. The asp null mutant was constructed by homologous recombination with suicide plasmid pNQ705-1. Compared with the wild-type strain, the asp null mutant exhibited a significant decrease of total extracellular protease activity, and caused a 15-fold decrease in virulence of V. alginolyticus. In our previous study, the luxO and luxR(val) genes from V. alginolyticus MVP01 were cloned and identified, and the luxO-luxR(val) regulatory couple was shown to regulate various genes expression, suggesting that it played a central role in the quorum sensing system of V. alginolyticus. In this study, the regulation of the asp gene was analyzed by using RT-PCR and quantitative real-time PCR methods; we proved that its transcription was greatly induced at the late large stage of growth and was regulated by luxO-luxR(val) regulatory system. PMID:19494689

  13. VdSNF1, the sucrose nonfermenting protein kinase gene of Verticillium dahliae, is required for virulence and expression of genes involved in cell-wall degradation.

    PubMed

    Tzima, Aliki K; Paplomatas, Epaminondas J; Rauyaree, Payungsak; Ospina-Giraldo, Manuel D; Kang, Seogchan

    2011-01-01

    Verticillium dahliae is a soilborne fungus causing vascular wilt in a diverse array of plant species. Its virulence has been attributed, among other factors, to the activity of hydrolytic cell wall-degrading enzymes (CWDE). The sucrose nonfermenting 1 gene (VdSNF1), which regulates catabolic repression, was disrupted in V. dahliae tomato race 1. Expression of CWDE in the resulting mutants was not induced in inductive medium and in simulated xylem fluid medium. Growth of the mutants was significantly reduced when grown with pectin or galactose as a carbon source whereas, with glucose, sucrose, and xylose, they grew similarly to wild-type and ectopic transformants. The mutants were severely impaired in virulence on tomato and eggplant (final disease severity reduced by an average of 87%). Microscopic observation of the infection behavior of a green fluorescent protein (gfp)-labeled VdSNF1 mutant (70ΔSF-gfp1) showed that it was defective in initial colonization of roots. Cross sections of tomato stem at the cotyledonary level showed that 70ΔSF-gfp1 colonized xylem vessels considerably less than the wild-type strain. The wild-type strain heavily colonized xylem vessels and adjacent parenchyma cells. Quantification of fungal biomass in plant tissues further confirmed reduced colonization of roots, stems, and cotyledons by 70ΔSF-gfp1 relative to that by the wild-type strain. PMID:20839958

  14. The Human Antimicrobial Peptide LL-37 Binds Directly to CsrS, a Sensor Histidine Kinase of Group A Streptococcus, to Activate Expression of Virulence Factors*

    PubMed Central

    Velarde, Jorge J.; Ashbaugh, Melissa; Wessels, Michael R.

    2014-01-01

    Group A Streptococcus (GAS) responds to subinhibitory concentrations of LL-37 by up-regulation of virulence factors through the CsrRS (CovRS) two-component system. The signaling mechanism, however, is unclear. To determine whether LL-37 signaling reflects specific binding to CsrS or rather a nonspecific response to LL-37-mediated membrane damage, we tested LL-37 fragments for CsrRS signaling and for GAS antimicrobial activity. We identified a 10-residue fragment (RI-10) of LL-37 as the minimal peptide that retains the ability to signal increased expression of GAS virulence factors, yet it has no detectable antimicrobial activity against GAS. Substitution of individual key amino acids in RI-10 reduced or abrogated signaling. These data do not support the hypothesis that CsrS detects LL-37-induced damage to the bacterial cell membrane but rather suggest that LL-37 signaling is mediated by a direct interaction with CsrS. To test whether LL-37 binds to CsrS, we used the purified CsrS extracellular domain to pull down LL-37 in vitro, a result that provides further evidence that LL-37 binds to CsrS. The dissociation of CsrS-mediated signaling from membrane damage by LL-37 fragments together with in vitro evidence for a direct LL-37-CsrS binding interaction constitute compelling evidence that signal transduction by LL-37 through CsrS reflects a direct ligand/receptor interaction. PMID:25378408

  15. Large Deletions in the pAtC58 Megaplasmid of Agrobacterium tumefaciens Can Confer Reduced Carriage Cost and Increased Expression of Virulence Genes

    PubMed Central

    Morton, Elise R.; Merritt, Peter M.; Bever, James D.; Fuqua, Clay

    2013-01-01

    The accessory plasmid pAtC58 of the common laboratory strain of Agrobacterium tumefaciens confers numerous catabolic functions and has been proposed to play a role in virulence. Genomic sequencing of evolved laboratory strains of A. tumefaciens revealed the presence of multiple deletion events in the At plasmid, with reductions in plasmid size ranging from 25% to 30% (115–194 kb). Flanking both ends of the sites of these deletions is a short-nucleotide repeat sequence that is in a single copy in the deleted plasmids, characteristic of a phage- or transposon-mediated deletion event. This repeat sequence is widespread throughout the C58 genome, but concentrated on the At plasmid, suggesting its frequency to be nonrandom. In this study, we assess the prevalence of the larger of these deletions in multiple C58 derivatives and characterize its functional significance. We find that in addition to elevating virulence gene expression, this deletion is associated with a significantly reduced carriage cost to the cell. These observations are a clear demonstration of the dynamic nature of the bacterial genome and suggest a mechanism for genetic plasticity of these costly but otherwise stable plasmids. Additionally, this phenomenon could be the basis for some of the dramatic recombination events so ubiquitous within and among megaplasmids. PMID:23783172

  16. Tannin-rich pomegranate rind extracts reduce adhesion to and invasion of Caco-2 Cells by Listeria monocytogenes and decrease its expression of virulence genes.

    PubMed

    Xu, Yunfeng; Li, Guanghui; Zhang, Baigang; Wu, Qian; Wang, Xin; Xia, Xiaodong

    2015-01-01

    Pomegranate rind is rich in tannins that have remarkable antimicrobial activities. This study aimed to evaluate the effects of a tannin-rich fraction from pomegranate rind (TFPR) on Listeria monocytogenes virulence gene expression and on the pathogen's interaction with human epithelial cells. Growth curves were monitored to determine the effect of TFPR on L. monocytogenes growth. The 3-(4,5-dimethylthiazol-2-yl)2,5-diphenyltetrazolium bromide and fluorescence staining assays were used to examine the cytotoxicity of TFPR. The effects of TFPR on L. monocytogenes adhesion to and invasion of epithelial cells were investigated using Caco-2 cells. Real-time quantitative PCR analysis was conducted to quantify mRNA levels of three virulence genes in L. monocytogenes. Results showed that a MIC of TFPR against L. monocytogenes was 5 mg/ml in this study. TFPR exhibited cytotoxicity against Caco-2 cells when the concentration was 2.5 mg/ml. Subinhibitory concentrations of TFPR significantly reduced, in a dose-dependent manner, adhesion to and invasion of Caco-2 cells by L. monocytogenes. When L. monocytogenes was grown in the presence of 2.5 mg/ml TFPR, the transcriptional levels of prfA, inlA, and hly decreased by 17-, 34-, and 28-fold, respectively. PMID:25581187

  17. Expression of Five Endopolygalacturonase Genes and Demonstration that MfPG1 Overexpression Diminishes Virulence in the Brown Rot Pathogen Monilinia fructicola.

    PubMed

    Chou, Chien-Ming; Yu, Fang-Yi; Yu, Pei-Ling; Ho, Jia-Fang; Bostock, Richard M; Chung, Kuang-Ren; Huang, Jenn-Wen; Lee, Miin-Huey

    2015-01-01

    Monilinia fructicola is a devastating pathogen on stone fruits, causing blossom blight and fruit rot. Little is known about pathogenic mechanisms in M. fructicola and related Monilinia species. In this study, five endopolygalacturonase (endo-PG) genes were cloned and functionally characterized in M. fructicola. Quantitative reverse-transcriptase PCR (qRT-PCR) revealed that the five MfPG genes are differentially expressed during pathogenesis and in culture under various pH regimes and carbon and nitrogen sources. MfPG1 encodes the major endo-PG and is expressed to significantly higher levels compared to the other four MfPGs in culture and in planta. MfPG1 function during pathogenesis was evaluated by examining the disease phenotypes and gene expression patterns in M. fructicola MfPG1-overexpressing strains and in strains carrying the β-glucuronidase (GUS) reporter gene fused with MfPG1 (MfPG1-GUS). The MFPG1-GUS reporter was expressed in situ in conidia and hyphae following inoculation of flower petals, and qRT-PCR analysis confirmed MfPG1 expression during pathogenesis. MfPG1-overexpressing strains produced smaller lesions and higher levels of reactive oxygen species (ROS) on the petals of peach and rose flowers than the wild-type strain, suggesting that MfPG1 affecting fungal virulence might be in part resulted from the increase of ROS in the Prunus-M. fructicola interactions. PMID:26120831

  18. Expression of Five Endopolygalacturonase Genes and Demonstration that MfPG1 Overexpression Diminishes Virulence in the Brown Rot Pathogen Monilinia fructicola

    PubMed Central

    Yu, Pei-Ling; Ho, Jia-Fang; Bostock, Richard M.; Chung, Kuang-Ren; Huang, Jenn-Wen; Lee, Miin-Huey

    2015-01-01

    Monilinia fructicola is a devastating pathogen on stone fruits, causing blossom blight and fruit rot. Little is known about pathogenic mechanisms in M. fructicola and related Monilinia species. In this study, five endopolygalacturonase (endo-PG) genes were cloned and functionally characterized in M. fructicola. Quantitative reverse-transcriptase PCR (qRT-PCR) revealed that the five MfPG genes are differentially expressed during pathogenesis and in culture under various pH regimes and carbon and nitrogen sources. MfPG1 encodes the major endo-PG and is expressed to significantly higher levels compared to the other four MfPGs in culture and in planta. MfPG1 function during pathogenesis was evaluated by examining the disease phenotypes and gene expression patterns in M. fructicola MfPG1-overexpressing strains and in strains carrying the β-glucuronidase (GUS) reporter gene fused with MfPG1 (MfPG1-GUS). The MFPG1-GUS reporter was expressed in situ in conidia and hyphae following inoculation of flower petals, and qRT-PCR analysis confirmed MfPG1 expression during pathogenesis. MfPG1-overexpressing strains produced smaller lesions and higher levels of reactive oxygen species (ROS) on the petals of peach and rose flowers than the wild-type strain, suggesting that MfPG1 affecting fungal virulence might be in part resulted from the increase of ROS in the Prunus–M. fructicola interactions. PMID:26120831

  19. EVALUATING VIRULENCE OF WATERBORNE AND CLINCIAL AEROMONAS ISOLATES USING GENE EXPRESSION AND MORTALITY IN NEONATAL MICE FOLLOWED BY ASSESSING CELL CULTURE'S ABILITY TO PREDICT VIRULENCE BASED ON TRANSCRIPTIONAL RESPONSE

    EPA Science Inventory

    The virulence of multiple Aeromonas spp. were assessed using two models, a neonatal mouse assay and a mouse intestinal cell culture. Transcriptional responses to both infection models were assessed using microarrays. After artificial infection with a variety of Aeromonas spp., ...

  20. Deletion of AS87_03730 gene changed the bacterial virulence and gene expression of Riemerella anatipestifer

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Xiaolan; Yue, Jiaping; Ding, Chan; Wang, Shaohui; Liu, Beibei; Tian, Mingxing; Yu, Shengqing

    2016-01-01

    Riemerella anatipestifer is an important pathogen of waterfowl, which causes septicemia anserum exsudativa in ducks. In this study, an AS87_03730 gene deletion R. anatipestifer mutant Yb2ΔAS87_03730 was constructed to investigate the role of AS87_03730 on R. anatipestifer virulence and gene regulation. By deleting a 708-bp fragment from AS87_03730, the mutant Yb2ΔAS87_03730 showed a significant decreased growth rate in TSB and invasion capacity in Vero cells, compared to wild-type strain Yb2. Moreover, the median lethal dose (LD50) of Yb2ΔAS87_03730 was 1.24 × 107 colony forming units (CFU), which is about 80-fold attenuated than that of Yb2 (LD50 = 1.53 × 105 CFU). Furthermore, RNA-Seq analysis and Real-time PCR indicated 19 up-regulated and two down-regulated genes in Yb2ΔAS87_03730. Functional analysis revealed that 12 up-regulated genes were related to “Translation, ribosomal structure and biogenesis”, two were classified into “Cell envelope biogenesis, outer membrane”, one was involved in “Amino acid transport and metabolism”, and the other four had unknown functions. Polymerase chain reaction and sequence analysis indicated that the AS87_03730 gene is highly conserved among R. anatipestifer strains, as the percent sequence identity was over 93.5%. This study presents evidence that AS87_03730 gene is involved in bacterial virulence and gene regulation of R. anatipestifer. PMID:26928424

  1. Expression of Listeria monocytogenes key virulence genes during growth in liquid medium, on rocket and melon at 4, 10 and 30 °C.

    PubMed

    Hadjilouka, Agni; Molfeta, Christina; Panagiotopoulou, Olga; Paramithiotis, Spiros; Mataragas, Marios; Drosinos, Eleftherios H

    2016-05-01

    The aim of the present study was to assess the expression of key virulence genes, during growth of a Listeria monocytogenes isolate in liquid medium, on melon and rocket at different temperatures and time. For that purpose, BHI broth, rocket and melon were inoculated at 7.0-7.5 log CFU mL(-1) or g(-1)and stored at 4, 10 and 30 °C. Sampling took place upon inoculation and after 0.5, 6 and 24 h of incubation. The RNA was stabilized and the expression of hly, plcA, plcB, sigB, inlA, inlB, inlC, inlJ, lmo2672 and lmo2470 was assessed by RT-qPCR. The results obtained were summarized into two observations; the first one referring to the interactive effect of incubation temperature and type of substrate and the second one to the effect of time on gene expression. Regarding the latter, nearly all genes were regulated upon inoculation and exhibited differential expression in the subsequent sampling times indicating the existence of additional regulatory mechanisms yet to be explored. PMID:26742611

  2. In Vivo-Expressed Proteins of Virulent Leptospira interrogans Serovar Autumnalis N2 Elicit Strong IgM Responses of Value in Conclusive Diagnosis.

    PubMed

    Raja, Veerapandian; Shanmughapriya, Santhanam; Kanagavel, Murugesan; Artiushin, Sergey C; Velineni, Sridhar; Timoney, John F; Natarajaseenivasan, Kalimuthusamy

    2016-01-01

    Leptospirosis is a serious zoonosis that is underdiagnosed because of limited access to laboratory facilities in Southeast Asia, Central and South America, and Oceania. Timely diagnosis of locally distributed serovars of high virulence is crucial for successful care and outbreak management. Using pooled patient sera, an expression gene library of a virulent Leptospira interrogans serovar Autumnalis strain N2 isolated in South India was screened. The identified genes were characterized, and the purified recombinant proteins were used as antigens in IgM enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) either singly or in combination. Sera (n = 118) from cases of acute leptospirosis along with sera (n = 58) from healthy subjects were tested for reactivity with the identified proteins in an ELISA designed to detect specific IgM responses. We have identified nine immunoreactive proteins, ArgC, RecA, GlpF, FliD, TrmD, RplS, RnhB, Lp28.6, and Lrr44.9, which were found to be highly conserved among pathogenic leptospires. Apparently, the proteins ArgC, RecA, GlpF, FliD, TrmD, and Lrr44.9 are expressed during natural infection of the host and undetectable in in vitro cultures. Among all the recombinant proteins used as antigens in IgM ELISA, ArgC had the highest sensitivity and specificity, 89.8% and 95.5%, respectively, for the conclusive diagnosis of leptospirosis. The use of ArgC and RecA in combination for IgM ELISA increased the sensitivity and specificity to 95.7% and 94.9%, respectively. ArgC and RecA thus elicited specific IgM responses and were therefore effective in laboratory confirmation of Leptospira infection. PMID:26607308

  3. In Vivo-Expressed Proteins of Virulent Leptospira interrogans Serovar Autumnalis N2 Elicit Strong IgM Responses of Value in Conclusive Diagnosis

    PubMed Central

    Raja, Veerapandian; Shanmughapriya, Santhanam; Kanagavel, Murugesan; Artiushin, Sergey C.; Velineni, Sridhar; Timoney, John F.

    2015-01-01

    Leptospirosis is a serious zoonosis that is underdiagnosed because of limited access to laboratory facilities in Southeast Asia, Central and South America, and Oceania. Timely diagnosis of locally distributed serovars of high virulence is crucial for successful care and outbreak management. Using pooled patient sera, an expression gene library of a virulent Leptospira interrogans serovar Autumnalis strain N2 isolated in South India was screened. The identified genes were characterized, and the purified recombinant proteins were used as antigens in IgM enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) either singly or in combination. Sera (n = 118) from cases of acute leptospirosis along with sera (n = 58) from healthy subjects were tested for reactivity with the identified proteins in an ELISA designed to detect specific IgM responses. We have identified nine immunoreactive proteins, ArgC, RecA, GlpF, FliD, TrmD, RplS, RnhB, Lp28.6, and Lrr44.9, which were found to be highly conserved among pathogenic leptospires. Apparently, the proteins ArgC, RecA, GlpF, FliD, TrmD, and Lrr44.9 are expressed during natural infection of the host and undetectable in in vitro cultures. Among all the recombinant proteins used as antigens in IgM ELISA, ArgC had the highest sensitivity and specificity, 89.8% and 95.5%, respectively, for the conclusive diagnosis of leptospirosis. The use of ArgC and RecA in combination for IgM ELISA increased the sensitivity and specificity to 95.7% and 94.9%, respectively. ArgC and RecA thus elicited specific IgM responses and were therefore effective in laboratory confirmation of Leptospira infection. PMID:26607308

  4. Co2+-dependent gene expression in Streptococcus pneumoniae: opposite effect of Mn2+ and Co2+ on the expression of the virulence genes psaBCA, pcpA, and prtA

    PubMed Central

    Manzoor, Irfan; Shafeeq, Sulman; Kloosterman, Tomas G.; Kuipers, Oscar P.

    2015-01-01

    Manganese (Mn2+)-, zinc (Zn2+)- and copper (Cu2+) play significant roles in transcriptional gene regulation, physiology, and virulence of Streptococcus pneumoniae. So far, the effect of the important transition metal ion cobalt (Co2+) on gene expression of S. pneumoniae has not yet been explored. Here, we study the impact of Co2+ stress on the transcriptome of S. pneumoniae strain D39. BLAST searches revealed that the genome of S. pneumoniae encodes a putative Co2+-transport operon (cbi operon), the expression of which we show here to be induced by a high Co2+ concentration. Furthermore, we found that Co2+, as has been shown previously for Zn2+, can cause derepression of the genes of the PsaR virulence regulon, encoding the Mn2+-uptake system PsaBCA, the choline binding protein PcpA and the cell-wall associated serine protease PrtA. Interestingly, although Mn2+ represses expression of the PsaR regulon and Co2+ leads to derepression, both metal ions stimulate interaction of PsaR with its target promoters. These data will be discussed in the light of previous studies on similar metal-responsive transcriptional regulators. PMID:26257722

  5. In vivo virulence of viral haemorrhagic septicaemia virus (VHSV) in rainbow trout Oncorhynchus mykiss correlates inversely with in vitro Mx gene expression.

    PubMed

    Cano, Irene; Collet, Bertrand; Pereira, Clarissa; Paley, Richard; van Aerle, Ronny; Stone, David; Taylor, Nick G H

    2016-05-01

    The in vitro replication of viral haemorrhagic septicaemia virus (VHSV) isolates from each VHSV genotype and the associated cellular host Mx gene expression were analysed. All the isolates were able to infect RTG-2 cells and induce increased Mx gene expression (generic assay detecting isoforms 1 and 3 [Mx1/3]). A trout pathogenic, genotype Ia isolate (J167), showing high replication in RTG-2 cells (by infective titre and N gene expression) induced lower Mx1/3 gene expression than observed in VHSV isolates known to be non-pathogenic to rainbow trout: 96-43/8, 96-43/10 (Ib); 1p49, 1p53 (II); and MI03 (IVb). Paired co-inoculation assays were analysed using equal number of plaque forming units per ml (PFU) of J167 (Ia genotype) with other less pathogenic VHSV genotypes. In these co-inoculations, the Mx1/3 gene expression was significantly lower than for the non-pathogenic isolate alone. Of the three rainbow trout Mx isoforms, J167 did not induce Mx1 up-regulation in RTG-2 or RTgill-W1 cells. Co-inoculating isolates resulted in greater inhibition of Mx in both rainbow trout cell lines studied. Up-regulation of sea bream Mx in SAF-1 cells induced by 96-43/8 was also lower in co-inoculation assays with J167. The RTG-P1 cell line, expressing luciferase under the control of the interferon-induced Mx rainbow trout gene promoter, showed low luciferase activity when inoculated with pathogenic strains: J167, DK-5131 (Ic), NO-A-163/68 (Id), TR-206239-1, TR-22207111 (Ie), 99-292 (IVa), and CA-NB00-01 (IVc). Co-inoculation assays showed a J167-dose dependent inhibition of the luciferase activity. The data suggest that virulent VHSV isolates may interfere in the interferon pathways, potentially determining higher pathogenicity. PMID:27066706

  6. Ellagic Acid Derivatives from Terminalia chebula Retz. Downregulate the Expression of Quorum Sensing Genes to Attenuate Pseudomonas aeruginosa PAO1 Virulence

    PubMed Central

    Sarabhai, Sajal; Sharma, Prince; Capalash, Neena

    2013-01-01

    Background Burgeoning antibiotic resistance in Pseudomonas aeruginosa has necessitated the development of anti pathogenic agents that can quench acylhomoserine lactone (AHL) mediated QS with least risk of resistance. This study explores the anti quorum sensing potential of T. chebula Retz. and identification of probable compounds(s) showing anti QS activity and the mechanism of attenuation of P. aeruginosa PAO1 virulence factors. Methods and Results Methanol extract of T. chebula Retz. fruit showed anti QS activity using Agrobacterium tumefaciens A136. Bioactive fraction (F7), obtained by fractionation of methanol extract using Sephadex LH20, showed significant reduction (p<0.001) in QS regulated production of extracellular virulence factors in P. aeruginosa PAO1. Biofilm formation and alginate were significantly (p<0.05) reduced with enhanced (20%) susceptibility to tobramycin. Real Time PCR of F7 treated P. aeruginosa showed down regulation of autoinducer synthase (lasI and rhlI) and their cognate receptor (lasR and rhlR) genes by 89, 90, 90 and 93%, respectively. Electrospray Ionization Mass Spectrometry also showed 90 and 64% reduction in the production of 3-oxo-C12HSL and C4HSL after treatment. Decrease in AHLs as one of the mechanisms of quorum quenching by F7 was supported by the reversal of inhibited swarming motility in F7-treated P. aeruginosa PAO1 on addition of C4HSL. F7 also showed antagonistic activity against 3-oxo-C12HSL-dependent QS in E. coli bioreporter. C. elegans fed on F7-treated P. aeruginosa showed enhanced survival with LT50 increasing from 24 to 72 h. LC-ESI-MS of F7 revealed the presence of ellagic acid derivatives responsible for anti QS activity in T. chebula extract. Conclusions This is the first report on anti QS activity of T. chebula fruit linked to EADs which down regulate the expression of lasIR and rhlIR genes with concomitant decrease in AHLs in P. aeruginosa PAO1 causing attenuation of its virulence factors and enhanced

  7. Co-ordinate expression of virulence genes during swarm-cell differentiation and population migration of Proteus mirabilis.

    PubMed

    Allison, C; Lai, H C; Hughes, C

    1992-06-01

    The uropathogenic Gram-negative bacterium Proteus mirabilis exhibits a form of multicellular behaviour termed swarming, which involves cyclical differentiation of typical vegetative cells into filamentous, multinucleate, hyperflagellate swarm cells capable of rapid and co-ordinated population migration across surfaces. We observed that differentiation into swarm cells was accompanied by substantial increases in the activities of intracellular urease and extracellular haemolysin and metalloprotease, which are believed to be central to the pathogenicity of P. mirabilis. In addition, the ability of P. mirabilis to invade human urothelial cells in vitro was primarily a characteristic of differentiated swarm cells, not vegetative cells. These virulence factor activities fell back as the cells underwent cyclical reversion to the vegetative form (consolidation), in parallel with the diagnostic modulation of flagellin levels on the cell surface. Control cellular alkaline phosphatase activities did not increase during differentiation or consolidation. Non-flagellated, nonmotile transposon insertion mutants were unable to invade urothelial cells and they generated only low-level activities of haemolysin, urease and protease (0-10% of wild type). Motile mutants unable to differentiate into swarm cells were comparably reduced in their haemolytic, ureolytic and invasive phenotypes and generated threefold less protease activity. Mutants that were able to form swarm cells but exhibited various aberrant patterns of swarming migration produced wild-type activities of haemolysin, urease and protease, but their ability to enter urothelial cells was three- to 10-fold lower.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS) PMID:1495387

  8. The PB2 Subunit of the Influenza Virus RNA Polymerase Affects Virulence by Interacting with the Mitochondrial Antiviral Signaling Protein and Inhibiting Expression of Beta Interferon▿

    PubMed Central

    Graef, Katy M.; Vreede, Frank T.; Lau, Yuk-Fai; McCall, Amber W.; Carr, Simon M.; Subbarao, Kanta; Fodor, Ervin

    2010-01-01

    The PB2 subunit of the influenza virus RNA polymerase is a major virulence determinant of influenza viruses. However, the molecular mechanisms involved remain unknown. It was previously shown that the PB2 protein, in addition to its nuclear localization, also accumulates in the mitochondria. Here, we demonstrate that the PB2 protein interacts with the mitochondrial antiviral signaling protein, MAVS (also known as IPS-1, VISA, or Cardif), and inhibits MAVS-mediated beta interferon (IFN-β) expression. In addition, we show that PB2 proteins of influenza viruses differ in their abilities to associate with the mitochondria. In particular, the PB2 proteins of seasonal human influenza viruses localize to the mitochondria while PB2 proteins of avian influenza viruses are nonmitochondrial. This difference in localization is caused by a single amino acid polymorphism in the PB2 mitochondrial targeting signal. In order to address the functional significance of the mitochondrial localization of the PB2 protein in vivo, we have generated two recombinant human influenza viruses encoding either mitochondrial or nonmitochondrial PB2 proteins. We found that the difference in the mitochondrial localization of the PB2 proteins does not affect the growth of these viruses in cell culture. However, the virus encoding the nonmitochondrial PB2 protein induces higher levels of IFN-β and, in an animal model, is attenuated compared to the isogenic virus encoding a mitochondrial PB2. Overall this study implicates the PB2 protein in the regulation of host antiviral innate immune pathways and suggests an important role for the mitochondrial association of the PB2 protein in determining virulence. PMID:20538852

  9. Antimicrobial peptides effectively kill a broad spectrum of Listeria monocytogenes and Staphylococcus aureus strains independently of origin, sub-type, or virulence factor expression

    PubMed Central

    Gottlieb, Caroline Trebbien; Thomsen, Line Elnif; Ingmer, Hanne; Mygind, Per Holse; Kristensen, Hans-Henrik; Gram, Lone

    2008-01-01

    Background Host defense peptides (HDPs), or antimicrobial peptides (AMPs), are important components of the innate immune system that bacterial pathogens must overcome to establish an infection and HDPs have been suggested as novel antimicrobial therapeutics in treatment of infectious diseases. Hence it is important to determine the natural variation in susceptibility to HDPs to ensure a successful use in clinical treatment regimes. Results Strains of two human bacterial pathogens, Listeria monocytogenes and Staphylococcus aureus, were selected to cover a wide range of origin, sub-type, and phenotypic behavior. Strains within each species were equally sensitive to HDPs and oxidative stress representing important components of the innate immune defense system. Four non-human peptides (protamine, plectasin, novicidin, and novispirin G10) were similar in activity profile (MIC value spectrum) to the human β-defensin 3 (HBD-3). All strains were inhibited by concentrations of hydrogen peroxide between 0.1% – 1.0%. Sub-selections of both species differed in expression of several virulence-related factors and in their ability to survive in human whole blood and kill the nematode virulence model Caenorhabditis elegans. For L. monocytogenes, proliferation in whole blood was paralleled by high invasion in Caco-2 cells and fast killing of C. elegans, however, no such pattern in phenotypic behavior was observed for S. aureus and none of the phenotypic differences were correlated to sensitivity to HDPs. Conclusion Strains of L. monocytogenes and S. aureus were within each species equally sensitive to a range of HDPs despite variations in subtype, origin, and phenotypic behavior. Our results suggest that therapeutic use of HDPs will not be hampered by occurrence of naturally tolerant strains of the two species investigated in the present study. PMID:19036162

  10. Sequence Variations and Protein Expression Levels of the Two Immune Evasion Proteins Gpm1 and Pra1 Influence Virulence of Clinical Candida albicans Isolates

    PubMed Central

    Luo, Shanshan; Hipler, Uta-Christina; Münzberg, Christin; Skerka, Christine; Zipfel, Peter F.

    2015-01-01

    Candida albicans, the important human fungal pathogen uses multiple evasion strategies to control, modulate and inhibit host complement and innate immune attack. Clinical C. albicans strains vary in pathogenicity and in serum resistance, in this work we analyzed sequence polymorphisms and variations in the expression levels of two central fungal complement evasion proteins, Gpm1 (phosphoglycerate mutase 1) and Pra1 (pH-regulated antigen 1) in thirteen clinical C. albicans isolates. Four nucleotide (nt) exchanges, all representing synonymous exchanges, were identified within the 747-nt long GPM1 gene. For the 900-nt long PRA1 gene, sixteen nucleotide exchanges were identified, which represented synonymous, as well as non-synonymous exchanges. All thirteen clinical isolates had a homozygous exchange (A to G) at position 73 of the PRA1 gene. Surface levels of Gpm1 varied by 8.2, and Pra1 levels by 3.3 fold in thirteen tested isolates and these differences influenced fungal immune fitness. The high Gpm1/Pra1 expressing candida strains bound the three human immune regulators more efficiently, than the low expression strains. The difference was 44% for Factor H binding, 51% for C4BP binding and 23% for plasminogen binding. This higher Gpm1/Pra1 expressing strains result in enhanced survival upon challenge with complement active, Factor H depleted human serum (difference 40%). In addition adhesion to and infection of human endothelial cells was increased (difference 60%), and C3b surface deposition was less effective (difference 27%). Thus, variable expression levels of central immune evasion protein influences immune fitness of the human fungal pathogen C. albicans and thus contribute to fungal virulence. PMID:25692293

  11. A recombinant Newcastle disease virus (NDV) expressing infectious laryngotracheitis virus (ILTV) surface glycoprotein D protects against highly virulent ILTV and NDV challenges in chickens.

    PubMed

    Kanabagatte Basavarajappa, Mallikarjuna; Kumar, Sachin; Khattar, Sunil K; Gebreluul, Girmay T; Paldurai, Anandan; Samal, Siba K

    2014-06-12

    Infectious laryngotracheitis (ILT) is a highly contagious acute respiratory disease of chickens caused by infectious laryngotracheitis virus (ILTV). Currently, modified live ILTV vaccines are used to control ILT infections. However, the live ILTV vaccines can revert to virulence after bird-to-bird passage and are capable of establishing latent infections, suggesting the need to develop safer vaccines against ILT. We have evaluated the role of three major ILTV surface glycoproteins, namely, gB, gC, and gD in protection and immunity against ILTV infection in chickens. Using reverse genetics approach, three recombinant Newcastle disease viruses (rNDVs) designated rNDV gB, rNDV gC, and rNDV gD were generated, each expressing gB, gC, and gD, respectively, of ILTV. Chickens received two immunizations with rNDVs alone (gB, gC, and gD) or in combination (gB+gC, gB+gD, gC+gD, and gB+gC+gD). Immunization with rNDV gD induced detectable levels of neutralizing antibodies with the magnitude of response greater than the rest of the experimental groups including those vaccinated with commercially available vaccines. The birds immunized with rNDV gD showed complete protection against virulent ILTV challenge. The birds immunized with rNDV gC alone or multivalent vaccines consisting of combination of rNDVs displayed partial protection with minimal disease and reduced replication of challenge virus in trachea. Immunization with rNDV gB neither reduced the severity of the disease nor the replication of challenge virus in trachea. The superior protective efficacy of rNDV gD vaccine compared to rNDV gB or rNDV gC vaccine was attributed to the higher levels of envelope incorporation and infected cell surface expression of gD than gB or gC. Our results suggest that rNDV expressing gD is a safe and effective bivalent vaccine against NDV and ILTV. PMID:24793943

  12. Mouse skin passage of a Streptococcus pyogenes Tn917 mutant of sagA/pel restores virulence, beta-hemolysis and sagA/pel expression without altering the position or sequence of the transposon

    PubMed Central

    Eberhard, Thomas H; Sledjeski, Darren D; Boyle, Michael DP

    2001-01-01

    Background Streptolysin S (SLS), the oxygen-stable hemolysin of Streptococcus pyogenes, has recently been shown to be encoded by the sagA/pel gene. Mutants lacking expression of this gene were less virulent in a dermonecrotic mouse infection model. Inactivation of the sagA/pel gene affect the expression of a variety of virulence factors in addition to the hemolysin. Insertion of a Tn917 transposon into the promoter region of the sagA/pel gene of S. pyogenes isolate CS101 eliminated expression of SLS, as well as decreased expression of the streptococcal pyrogenic exotoxin B, streptokinase and M protein. Results In this study a mouse skin air sac model was utilized to analyze the effect of biological pressures on expression of SLS and other sagA/pel regulated gene products. The insertion delayed the lethal effect of S. pyogenes in a mouse skin infection model. Despite this, bacteria could be cultured from the kidneys 72 hours post infection. These kidney-recovered isolates were β-hemolytic despite the transposon being present in its original location and had equivalent virulence to the wild type isolate when re-injected into naive mice. Northern blot analysis of the kidney-recovered isolates confirmed that transcription of sagA/pel was restored; however the expression of all sagA/pel regulated genes was not restored to wild type levels. Conclusions These results show that biological pressure present in the mouse can select for variants with altered expression of key virulence factor genes in S. pyogenes. PMID:11801184

  13. Regulation of Bacterial Virulence by Csr (Rsm) Systems

    PubMed Central

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

    2015-01-01

    SUMMARY 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. PMID:25833324

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

    PubMed

    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. PMID:25833324

  15. BosR (BB0647) Controls the RpoN-RpoS Regulatory Pathway and Virulence Expression in Borrelia burgdorferi by a Novel DNA-Binding Mechanism

    PubMed Central

    Ouyang, Zhiming; Deka, Ranjit K.; Norgard, Michael V.

    2011-01-01

    In Borrelia burgdorferi (Bb), the Lyme disease spirochete, the alternative σ factor σ54 (RpoN) directly activates transcription of another alternative σ factor, σS (RpoS) which, in turn, controls the expression of virulence-associated membrane lipoproteins. As is customary in σ54-dependent gene control, a putative NtrC-like enhancer-binding protein, Rrp2, is required to activate the RpoN-RpoS pathway. However, recently it was found that rpoS transcription in Bb also requires another regulator, BosR, which was previously designated as a Fur or PerR homolog. Given this unexpected requirement for a second activator to promote σ54-dependent gene transcription, and the fact that regulatory mechanisms among similar species of pathogenic bacteria can be strain-specific, we sought to confirm the regulatory role of BosR in a second virulent strain (strain 297) of Bb. Indeed, BosR displayed the same influence over lipoprotein expression and mammalian infectivity for strain Bb 297 that were previously noted for Bb strain B31. We subsequently found that recombinant BosR (rBosR) bound to the rpoS gene at three distinct sites, and that binding occurred despite the absence of consensus Fur or Per boxes. This led to the identification of a novel direct repeat sequence (TAAATTAAAT) critical for rBosR binding in vitro. Mutations in the repeat sequence markedly inhibited or abolished rBosR binding. Taken together, our studies provide new mechanistic insights into how BosR likely acts directly on rpoS as a positive transcriptional activator. Additional novelty is engendered by the facts that, although BosR is a Fur or PerR homolog and it contains zinc (like Fur and PerR), it has other unique features that clearly set it apart from these other regulators. Our findings also have broader implications regarding a previously unappreciated layer of control that can be involved in σ54–dependent gene regulation in bacteria. PMID:21347346

  16. Transgenic expression of the Helicobacter pylori virulence factor CagA promotes apoptosis or tumorigenesis through JNK activation in Drosophila.

    PubMed

    Wandler, Anica M; Guillemin, Karen

    2012-01-01

    Gastric cancer development is strongly correlated with infection by Helicobacter pylori possessing the effector protein CagA. Using a transgenic Drosophila melanogaster model, we show that CagA expression in the simple model epithelium of the larval wing imaginal disc causes dramatic tissue perturbations and apoptosis when CagA-expressing and non-expressing cells are juxtaposed. This cell death phenotype occurs through activation of JNK signaling and is enhanced by loss of the neoplastic tumor suppressors in CagA-expressing cells or loss of the TNF homolog Eiger in wild type neighboring cells. We further explored the effects of CagA-mediated JNK pathway activation on an epithelium in the context of oncogenic Ras activation, using a Drosophila model of metastasis. In this model, CagA expression in epithelial cells enhances the growth and invasion of tumors in a JNK-dependent manner. These data suggest a potential role for CagA-mediated JNK pathway activation in promoting gastric cancer progression. PMID:23093933

  17. The key sigma factor of transition phase, SigH, controls sporulation, metabolism, and virulence factor expression in Clostridium difficile.

    PubMed

    Saujet, Laure; Monot, Marc; Dupuy, Bruno; Soutourina, Olga; Martin-Verstraete, Isabelle

    2011-07-01

    Toxin synthesis in Clostridium difficile increases as cells enter into stationary phase. We first compared the expression profiles of strain 630E during exponential growth and at the onset of stationary phase and showed that genes involved in sporulation, cellular division, and motility, as well as carbon and amino acid metabolism, were differentially expressed under these conditions. We inactivated the sigH gene, which encodes an alternative sigma factor involved in the transition to post-exponential phase in Bacillus subtilis. Then, we compared the expression profiles of strain 630E and the sigH mutant after 10 h of growth. About 60% of the genes that were differentially expressed between exponential and stationary phases, including genes involved in motility, sporulation, and metabolism, were regulated by SigH, which thus appears to be a key regulator of the transition phase in C. difficile. SigH positively controls several genes required for sporulation. Accordingly, sigH inactivation results in an asporogeneous phenotype. The spo0A and CD2492 genes, encoding the master regulator of sporulation and one of its associated kinases, and the spoIIA operon were transcribed from a SigH-dependent promoter. The expression of tcdA and tcdB, encoding the toxins, and of tcdR, encoding the sigma factor required for toxin production, increased in a sigH mutant. Finally, SigH regulates the expression of genes encoding surface-associated proteins, such as the Cwp66 adhesin, the S-layer precursor, and the flagellum components. Among the 286 genes positively regulated by SigH, about 40 transcriptional units presenting a SigH consensus in their promoter regions are good candidates for direct SigH targets. PMID:21572003

  18. Gene expression profiling of the plant pathogenic basidiomycetous fungus Rhizoctonia solani AG 4 reveals putative virulence factors

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Rhizoctonia solani is a ubiquitous basidiomycetous soilborne fungal pathogen causing damping off of seedlings, aerial blights and postharvest diseases. To gain insight into the molecular mechanisms of pathogenesis a global approach based on analysis of expressed sequence tags (ESTs) was undertaken. ...

  19. Proteomic Characterization of Yersinia pestis Virulence

    SciTech Connect

    Chromy, B; Murphy, G; Gonzales, A; Fitch, J P; McCutchen-Maloney, S L

    2005-01-05

    Yersinia pestis, the etiological agent of plague, functions via the Type III secretion mechanism whereby virulence factors are induced upon interactions with a mammalian host. Here, the Y. pestis proteome was studied by two-dimensional differential gel electrophoresis (2-D DIGE) under physiologically relevant growth conditions mimicking the calcium concentrations and temperatures that the pathogen would encounter in the flea vector and upon interaction with the mammalian host. Over 4100 individual protein spots were detected of which hundreds were differentially expressed in the entire comparative experiment. A total of 43 proteins that were differentially expressed between the vector and host growth conditions were identified by mass spectrometry. Expected differences in expression were observed for several known virulence factors including catalase-peroxidase (KatY), murine toxin (Ymt), plasminogen activator (Pla), and F1 capsule antigen (Caf1), as well as putative virulence factors. Chaperone proteins and signaling molecules hypothesized to be involved in virulence due to their role in Type III secretion were also identified. Other differentially expressed proteins not previously reported to contribute to virulence are candidates for more detailed mechanistic studies, representing potential new virulence determinants. For example, several sugar metabolism proteins were differentially regulated in response to lower calcium and higher temperature, suggesting these proteins, while not directly connected to virulence, either represent a metabolic switch for survival in the host environment or may facilitate production of virulence factors. Results presented here contribute to a more thorough understanding of the virulence mechanism of Y. pestis through proteomic characterization of the pathogen under induced virulence.

  20. The knockdown of each component of the cysteine proteinase-adhesin complex of Entamoeba histolytica (EhCPADH) affects the expression of the other complex element as well as the in vitro and in vivo virulence.

    PubMed

    Ocádiz-Ruiz, Ramón; Fonseca, Wendy; Linford, Alicia S; Yoshino, Timothy P; Orozco, Esther; Rodríguez, Mario A

    2016-01-01

    Entamoeba histolytica is the protozoan parasite causative of human amoebiasis, disease responsible for 40 000-100 000 deaths annually. The cysteine proteinase-adhesin complex of this parasite (EhCPADH) is a heterodimeric protein formed by a cysteine protease (EhCP112) and an adhesin (EhADH) that plays an important role in the cytopathic mechanism of this parasite. The coding genes for EhCP112 and EhADH are adjacent in the E. histolytica genome, suggesting that their expression may be co-regulated, but this hypothesis has not yet been confirmed. Here, we performed the knockdown of EhCP112 and EhADH using gene-specific short-hairpin RNAs (shRNA), and the effect of these knockdowns on the expression of both complex components as well as on the in vitro and in vivo virulence was analysed. Results showed that the knockdown of one of the EhCPADH components produced a simultaneous downregulation of the other protein. Accordingly, a concomitant reduction in the overall expression of the complex was observed. The downregulation of each component also produced a significant decrease in the in vitro and in vivo virulence of trophozoites. These results demonstrated that the expression of EhCP112 and EhADH is co-regulated and confirmed that the EhCPADH complex plays an important role in E. histolytica virulence. PMID:26521708

  1. Identification of Differentially Expressed Proteins from Leishmania amazonensis Associated with the Loss of Virulence of the Parasites

    PubMed Central

    Magalhães, Rubens D. M.; Duarte, Mariana C.; Mattos, Eliciane C.; Martins, Vivian T.; Lage, Paula S.; Chávez-Fumagalli, Miguel A.; Lage, Daniela P.; Menezes-Souza, Daniel; Régis, Wiliam C. B.; Manso Alves, Maria J.; Soto, Manuel; Tavares, Carlos A. P.; Nagen, Ronaldo A. P.; Coelho, Eduardo A. F.

    2014-01-01

    Background The present study analyzed whether or not the in vitro cultivation for long periods of time of pre-isolated Leishmania amazonensis from lesions of chronically infected BALB/c mice was able to interfere in the parasites' infectivity using in vivo and in vitro experiments. In addition, the proteins that presented a significant decrease or increase in their protein expression content were identified applying a proteomic approach. Methodology/Principal Findings Parasites were cultured in vitro for 150 days. Aliquots were collected on the day 0 of culture (R0), as well as after ten (R10; 50 days of culture), twenty (R20; 100 days of culture), and thirty (R30; 150 days of culture) passages, and were used to analyze the parasites' in vitro and in vivo infectivity, as well as to perform the proteomic approach. Approximately 837, 967, 935, and 872 spots were found in 2-DE gels prepared from R0, R10, R20, and R30 samples, respectively. A total of 37 spots presented a significant decrease in their intensity of expression, whereas a significant increase in protein content during cultivation could be observed for 19 proteins (both cases >2.0 folds). Some of these identified proteins can be described, such as diagnosis and/or vaccine candidates, while others are involved in the infectivity of Leishmania. It is interesting to note that six proteins, considered hypothetical in Leishmania, showed a significant decrease in their expression and were also identified. Conclusions/Significance The present study contributes to the understanding that the cultivation of parasites over long periods of time may well be related to the possible loss of infectivity of L. amazonensis. The identified proteins that presented a significant decrease in their expression during cultivation, including the hypothetical, may also be related to this loss of parasites' infectivity, and applied in future studies, including vaccine candidates and/or immunotherapeutic targets against leishmaniasis

  2. Expression of parasite genetic variation changes over the course of infection: implications of within-host dynamics for the evolution of virulence

    PubMed Central

    Clerc, Melanie; Ebert, Dieter; Hall, Matthew D.

    2015-01-01

    How infectious disease agents interact with their host changes during the course of infection and can alter the expression of disease-related traits. Yet by measuring parasite life-history traits at one or few moments during infection, studies have overlooked the impact of variable parasite growth trajectories on disease evolution. Here we show that infection-age-specific estimates of host and parasite fitness components can reveal new insight into the evolution of parasites. We do so by characterizing the within-host dynamics over an entire infection period for five genotypes of the castrating bacterial parasite Pasteuria ramosa infecting the crustacean Daphnia magna. Our results reveal that genetic variation for parasite-induced gigantism, host castration and parasite spore loads increases with the age of infection. Driving these patterns appears to be variation in how well the parasite maintains control of host reproduction late in the infection process. We discuss the evolutionary consequences of this finding with regard to natural selection acting on different ages of infection and the mechanism underlying the maintenance of castration efficiency. Our results highlight how elucidating within-host dynamics can shed light on the selective forces that shape infection strategies and the evolution of virulence. PMID:25761710

  3. Induction of protective immunity in chickens immunized with plant-made chimeric Bamboo mosaic virus particles expressing very virulent Infectious bursal disease virus antigen.

    PubMed

    Chen, Tsung-Hsien; Chen, Ten-Hong; Hu, Chung-Chi; Liao, Jia-Teh; Lee, Chin-Wei; Liao, Jiunn-Wang; Lin, Maw-Yeong; Liu, Hung-Jen; Wang, Min-Ying; Lin, Na-Sheng; Hsu, Yau-Heiu

    2012-06-01

    Very virulent Infectious bursal disease virus (vvIBDV) causes a highly contagious disease in young chickens and leads to significant economic loss in the poultry industry. Effective new vaccines are urgently needed. Autonomously replicating plant virus-based vector provides attractive means for producing chimeric virus particles (CVPs) in plants that can be developed into vaccines. In this study, we demonstrate the potential for vaccine development of Bamboo mosaic virus (BaMV) epitope-presentation system, where the antigen from vvIBDV VP2 was fused to the N-terminus of BaMV coat protein. Accordingly, an infections plasmid, pBIBD2, was constructed. Inoculation of the recombinant BaMV clone pBIBD2 enabled the generation of chimeric virus, BIBD2, and stable expression of IBDV VP2 antigen on its coat protein. After intramuscular immunization with BIBD2 CVPs, chickens produced antibodies against IBDV and were protected from vvIBDV (V263/TW strain) challenges. These results corroborate the feasibility of BaMV-based CVP platform in plants for the development and production of vaccines against IBDV. PMID:22406128

  4. The Klebsiella pneumoniae YfgL (BamB) lipoprotein contributes to outer membrane protein biogenesis, type-1 fimbriae expression, anti-phagocytosis, and in vivo virulence.

    PubMed

    Hsieh, Pei-Fang; Hsu, Chun-Ru; Chen, Chun-Tang; Lin, Tzu-Lung; Wang, Jin-Town

    2016-07-01

    Klebsiella pneumoniae is an opportunistic pathogen that causes several kinds of infections, including pneumonia, bacteremia, urinary tract infection and community-acquired pyogenic liver abscess (PLA). Adhesion is the critical first step in the infection process. Our previous work demonstrated that the transcellular translocation is exploited by K. pneumoniae strains to migrate from the gut flora into other tissues, resulting in systemic infections. However, the initial stages of K. pneumoniae infection remain unclear. In this study, we demonstrated that a K. pneumoniae strain deleted for yfgL (bamB) exhibited reduced adherence to and invasion of host cells; changed biogenesis of major β-barrel outer membrane proteins; decreased transcriptional expression of type-1 fimbriae; and increased susceptibility to vancomycin and erythromycin. The yfgL deletion mutant also had reduced ability to against neutrophil phagocytosis; exhibited decreased induction of host IL-6 production; and was profoundly attenuated for virulence in a K. pneumoniae model of bacteremia. Thus, the K. pneumoniae YfgL lipoprotein mediates in outer membrane proteins biogenesis and is crucial for anti-phagocytosis and survival in vivo. These data provide a new insight for K. pneumoniae attachment and such knowledge could facilitate preventive therapies or alternative therapies against K. pneumoniae. PMID:27029012

  5. Analysis of the Genome and Transcriptome of Cryptococcus neoformans var. grubii Reveals Complex RNA Expression and Microevolution Leading to Virulence Attenuation

    PubMed Central

    Janbon, Guilhem; Ormerod, Kate L.; Paulet, Damien; Byrnes, Edmond J.; Yadav, Vikas; Chatterjee, Gautam; Mullapudi, Nandita; Hon, Chung-Chau; Billmyre, R. Blake; Brunel, François; Bahn, Yong-Sun; Chen, Weidong; Chen, Yuan; Chow, Eve W. L.; Coppée, Jean-Yves; Floyd-Averette, Anna; Gaillardin, Claude; Gerik, Kimberly J.; Goldberg, Jonathan; Gonzalez-Hilarion, Sara; Gujja, Sharvari; Hamlin, Joyce L.; Hsueh, Yen-Ping; Ianiri, Giuseppe; Jones, Steven; Kodira, Chinnappa D.; Kozubowski, Lukasz; Lam, Woei; Marra, Marco; Mesner, Larry D.; Mieczkowski, Piotr A.; Moyrand, Frédérique; Nielsen, Kirsten; Proux, Caroline; Rossignol, Tristan; Schein, Jacqueline E.; Sun, Sheng; Wollschlaeger, Carolin; Wood, Ian A.; Zeng, Qiandong; Neuvéglise, Cécile; Newlon, Carol S.; Perfect, John R.; Lodge, Jennifer K.; Idnurm, Alexander; Stajich, Jason E.; Kronstad, James W.; Sanyal, Kaustuv; Heitman, Joseph; Fraser, James A.; Cuomo, Christina A.; Dietrich, Fred S.

    2014-01-01

    Cryptococcus neoformans is a pathogenic basidiomycetous yeast responsible for more than 600,000 deaths each year. It occurs as two serotypes (A and D) representing two varieties (i.e. grubii and neoformans, respectively). Here, we sequenced the genome and performed an RNA-Seq-based analysis of the C. neoformans var. grubii transcriptome structure. We determined the chromosomal locations, analyzed the sequence/structural features of the centromeres, and identified origins of replication. The genome was annotated based on automated and manual curation. More than 40,000 introns populating more than 99% of the expressed genes were identified. Although most of these introns are located in the coding DNA sequences (CDS), over 2,000 introns in the untranslated regions (UTRs) were also identified. Poly(A)-containing reads were employed to locate the polyadenylation sites of more than 80% of the genes. Examination of the sequences around these sites revealed a new poly(A)-site-associated motif (AUGHAH). In addition, 1,197 miscRNAs were identified. These miscRNAs can be spliced and/or polyadenylated, but do not appear to have obvious coding capacities. Finally, this genome sequence enabled a comparative analysis of strain H99 variants obtained after laboratory passage. The spectrum of mutations identified provides insights into the genetics underlying the micro-evolution of a laboratory strain, and identifies mutations involved in stress responses, mating efficiency, and virulence. PMID:24743168

  6. The Type Three Secretion System 2-Encoded Regulator EtrB Modulates Enterohemorrhagic Escherichia coli Virulence Gene Expression.

    PubMed

    Luzader, Deborah H; Willsey, Graham G; Wargo, Matthew J; Kendall, Melissa M

    2016-09-01

    Enterohemorrhagic Escherichia coli O157:H7 (EHEC) is a foodborne pathogen that causes bloody diarrhea and hemolytic uremic syndrome throughout the world. A defining feature of EHEC pathogenesis is the formation of attaching and effacing (AE) lesions on colonic epithelial cells. Most of the genes that code for AE lesion formation, including a type three secretion system (T3SS) and effectors, are carried within a chromosomal pathogenicity island called the locus of enterocyte effacement (LEE). In this study, we report that a putative regulator, which is encoded in the cryptic E. coli type three secretion system 2 (ETT2) locus and herein renamed EtrB, plays an important role in EHEC pathogenesis. The etrB gene is expressed as a monocistronic transcript, and EtrB autoregulates expression. We provide evidence that EtrB directly interacts with the ler regulatory region to activate LEE expression and promote AE lesion formation. Additionally, we mapped the EtrB regulatory circuit in EHEC to determine a global role for EtrB. EtrB is regulated by the transcription factor QseA, suggesting that these proteins comprise a regulatory circuit important for EHEC colonization of the gastrointestinal tract. PMID:27324484

  7. Global Regulator of Virulence A (GrvA) Coordinates Expression of Discrete Pathogenic Mechanisms in Enterohemorrhagic Escherichia coli through Interactions with GadW-GadE

    PubMed Central

    Morgan, Jason K.; Harro, Carly M.; Vendura, Khoury W.; Shaw, Lindsey N.

    2015-01-01

    ABSTRACT Global regulator of virulence A (GrvA) is a ToxR-family transcriptional regulator that activates locus of enterocyte effacement (LEE)-dependent adherence in enterohemorrhagic Escherichia coli (EHEC). LEE activation by GrvA requires the Rcs phosphorelay response regulator RcsB and is sensitive to physiologically relevant concentrations of bicarbonate, a known stimulant of virulence systems in intestinal pathogens. This study determines the genomic scale of GrvA-dependent regulation and uncovers details of the molecular mechanism underlying GrvA-dependent regulation of pathogenic mechanisms in EHEC. In a grvA-null background of EHEC strain TW14359, RNA sequencing analysis revealed the altered expression of over 700 genes, including the downregulation of LEE- and non-LEE-encoded effectors and the upregulation of genes for glutamate-dependent acid resistance (GDAR). Upregulation of GDAR genes corresponded with a marked increase in acid resistance. GrvA-dependent regulation of GDAR and the LEE required gadE, the central activator of GDAR genes and a direct repressor of the LEE. Control of gadE by GrvA was further determined to occur through downregulation of the gadE activator GadW. This interaction of GrvA with GadW-GadE represses the acid resistance phenotype, while it concomitantly activates the LEE-dependent adherence and secretion of immune subversion effectors. The results of this study significantly broaden the scope of GrvA-dependent regulation and its role in EHEC pathogenesis. IMPORTANCE Enterohemorrhagic Escherichia coli (EHEC) is an intestinal human pathogen causing acute hemorrhagic colitis and life-threatening hemolytic-uremic syndrome. For successful transmission and gut colonization, EHEC relies on the glutamate-dependent acid resistance (GDAR) system and a type III secretion apparatus, encoded on the LEE pathogenicity island. This study investigates the mechanism whereby the DNA-binding regulator GrvA coordinates activation of the LEE with

  8. Ciclopirox Olamine Treatment Affects the Expression Pattern of Candida albicans Genes Encoding Virulence Factors, Iron Metabolism Proteins, and Drug Resistance Factors

    PubMed Central

    Niewerth, Markus; Kunze, Donika; Seibold, Michael; Schaller, Martin; Korting, Hans Christian; Hube, Bernhard

    2003-01-01

    The hydroxypyridone ciclopirox olamine belongs to the antimycotic drugs used for the treatment of superficial mycoses. In contrast to the azoles and other antimycotic drugs, its specific mode of action is only poorly understood. To investigate the mode of action of ciclopirox olamine on fungal viability, pathogenicity, and drug resistance, we examined the expression patterns of 47 Candida albicans genes in cells grown in the presence of a subinhibitory concentration (0.6 μg/ml) of ciclopirox olamine by reverse transcription-PCR. In addition, we used suppression-subtractive hybridization to further identify genes that are up-regulated in the presence of ciclopirox olamine. The expression of essential genes such as ACT1 was not significantly modified in cells exposed to ciclopirox olamine. Most putative and known virulence genes such as genes encoding secreted proteinases or lipases had no or only moderately reduced expression levels. In contrast, exposure of cells to ciclopirox olamine led to a distinct up- or down-regulation of genes encoding iron permeases or transporters (FTR1, FTR2, FTH1), a copper permease (CCC2), an iron reductase (CFL1), and a siderophore transporter (SIT1); these effects resembled those found under iron-limited conditions. Addition of FeCl3 to ciclopirox olamine-treated cells reversed the effect of the drug. Addition of the iron chelator bipyridine to the growth medium induced similar patterns of expression of distinct iron-regulated genes (FTR1, FTR2). While serum-induced yeast-to-hyphal phase transition of C. albicans was not affected in ciclopirox olamine-treated cells in the presence of subinhibitory conditions, a dramatic increase in sensitivity to oxidative stress was noted, which may indicate the reduced activities of iron-containing gene products responsible for detoxification. Although the Candida drug resistance genes CDR1 and CDR2 were up-regulated, no change in resistance or increased tolerance could be observed even after an

  9. Genome-Wide Gene Expression Analysis Identifies the Proto-oncogene Tyrosine-Protein Kinase Src as a Crucial Virulence Determinant of Infectious Laryngotracheitis Virus in Chicken Cells

    PubMed Central

    Li, Hai; Wang, Fengjie; Han, Zongxi; Gao, Qi; Li, Huixin; Shao, Yuhao; Sun, Nana

    2015-01-01

    ABSTRACT Given the side effects of vaccination against infectious laryngotracheitis (ILT), novel strategies for ILT control and therapy are urgently needed. The modulation of host-virus interactions is a promising strategy to combat the virus; however, the interactions between the host and avian ILT herpesvirus (ILTV) are unclear. Using genome-wide transcriptome studies in combination with a bioinformatic analysis, we identified proto-oncogene tyrosine-protein kinase Src (Src) to be an important modulator of ILTV infection. Src controls the virulence of ILTV and is phosphorylated upon ILTV infection. Functional studies revealed that Src prolongs the survival of host cells by increasing the threshold of virus-induced cell death. Therefore, Src is essential for viral replication in vitro and in ovo but is not required for ILTV-induced cell death. Furthermore, our results identify a positive-feedback loop between Src and the tyrosine kinase focal adhesion kinase (FAK), which is necessary for the phosphorylation of either Src or FAK and is required for Src to modulate ILTV infection. To the best of our knowledge, we are the first to identify a key host regulator controlling host-ILTV interactions. We believe that our findings have revealed a new potential therapeutic target for ILT control and therapy. IMPORTANCE Despite the extensive administration of live attenuated vaccines starting from the mid-20th century and the administration of recombinant vaccines in recent years, infectious laryngotracheitis (ILT) outbreaks due to avian ILT herpesvirus (ILTV) occur worldwide annually. Presently, there are no drugs or control strategies that effectively treat ILT. Targeting of host-virus interactions is considered to be a promising strategy for controlling ILTV infections. However, little is known about the mechanisms governing host-ILTV interactions. The results from our study advance our understanding of host-ILTV interactions on a molecular level and provide experimental

  10. Expression of type I interferon-induced antiviral state and pro-apoptosis markers during experimental infection with low or high virulence bovine viral diarrhea virus in beef calves.

    PubMed

    Palomares, Roberto A; Walz, Heather G; Brock, Kenny V

    2013-05-01

    The objective of this study was to compare the mRNA expression of host genes involved in type-I interferon-induced antiviral state (IFN-α, IFN-β, Mx-1, PKR, OAS-1 and ISG-15), and apoptosis (caspase-3, -8, and -9), after experimental infection of beef calves with low or high virulence noncytopathic (ncp) bovine viral diarrhea virus (BVDV) strains. Thirty BVDV-naïve, clinically normal calves were randomly assigned to three groups. Calves were intranasally inoculated with low (LV; n=10, strain SD-1) or high (HV; n=10, strain 1373) virulence ncp BVDV or BVDV-free cell culture medium (Control, n=10). Quantitative RT-PCR was used to determine the target gene expression in tracheo-bronchial lymph nodes and spleen 5 days after infection. Interferon-α and -β mRNA levels were up-regulated in tracheo-bronchial lymph nodes (P<0.05) in the HV group, but not in the LV group, compared with the control group. There was an up-regulation of type I interferon-induced genes in spleen and tracheo-bronchial lymph nodes of HV and LV groups, compared with the control group (P<0.01). mRNA levels of OAS-1 and ISG-15 were significantly higher in LV than HV calves (P<0.05). A significant up-regulation of caspase-8 and -9 was observed in tracheo-bronchial lymph nodes in the LV group (P=0.01), but not in the HV group. In conclusion, experimental infection with either high or low virulence BVDV strains induced a significant expression of the type I interferon-induced genes in beef calves. There was a differential expression of some interferon-induced genes (OAS-1 and ISG-15) and pro-apoptosis markers based on BVDV virulence and genotype. PMID:23458997

  11. The Daiokanzoto (TJ-84) Kampo Formulation Reduces Virulence Factor Gene Expression in Porphyromonas gingivalis and Possesses Anti-Inflammatory and Anti-Protease Activities.

    PubMed

    Fournier-Larente, Jade; Azelmat, Jabrane; Yoshioka, Masami; Hinode, Daisuke; Grenier, Daniel

    2016-01-01

    Kampo formulations used in Japan to treat a wide variety of diseases and to promote health are composed of mixtures of crude extracts from the roots, bark, leaves, and rhizomes of a number of herbs. The present study was aimed at identifying the beneficial biological properties of Daiokanzoto (TJ-84), a Kampo formulation composed of crude extracts of Rhubarb rhizomes and Glycyrrhiza roots, with a view to using it as a potential treatment for periodontal disease. Daiokanzoto dose-dependently inhibited the expression of major Porphyromonas gingivalis virulence factors involved in host colonization and tissue destruction. More specifically, Daiokanzoto reduced the expression of the fimA, hagA, rgpA, and rgpB genes, as determined by quantitative real-time PCR. The U937-3xκB-LUC monocyte cell line transfected with a luciferase reporter gene was used to evaluate the anti-inflammatory properties of Daiokanzoto. Daiokanzoto attenuated the P. gingivalis-mediated activation of the NF-κB signaling pathway. It also reduced the secretion of pro-inflammatory cytokines (IL-6 and CXCL8) by lipopolysaccharide-stimulated oral epithelial cells and gingival fibroblasts. Lastly, Daiokanzoto, dose-dependently inhibited the catalytic activity of matrix metalloproteinases (-1 and -9). In conclusion, the present study provided evidence that Daiokanzoto shows potential for treating and/or preventing periodontal disease. The ability of this Kampo formulation to act on both bacterial pathogens and the host inflammatory response, the two etiological components of periodontal disease, is of high therapeutic interest. PMID:26859747

  12. Phosphate Limitation Induces Drastic Physiological Changes, Virulence-Related Gene Expression, and Secondary Metabolite Production in Pseudovibrio sp. Strain FO-BEG1.

    PubMed

    Romano, Stefano; Schulz-Vogt, Heide N; González, José M; Bondarev, Vladimir

    2015-05-15

    Phosphorus is a vital nutrient for living organisms and is obtained by bacteria primarily via phosphate uptake. However, phosphate is often scarcely accessible in nature, and there is evidence that in many areas of the ocean, its concentration limits bacterial growth. Surprisingly, the phosphate starvation response has been extensively investigated in different model organisms (e.g., Escherichia coli), but there is a dearth of studies on heterotrophic marine bacteria. In this work, we describe the response of Pseudovibrio sp. strain FO-BEG1, a metabolically versatile alphaproteobacterium and potential symbiont of marine sponges, to phosphate limitation. We compared the physiology, protein expression, and secondary metabolite production under phosphate-limited conditions to those under phosphate surplus conditions. We observed that phosphate limitation had a pleiotropic effect on the physiology of the strain, triggering cell elongation, the accumulation of polyhydroxyalkanoate, the degradation of polyphosphate, and the exchange of membrane lipids in favor of phosphorus-free lipids such as sulfoquinovosyl diacylglycerols. Many proteins involved in the uptake and degradation of phospho-organic compounds were upregulated, together with subunits of the ABC transport system for phosphate. Under conditions of phosphate limitation, FO-BEG1 secreted compounds into the medium that conferred an intense yellow coloration to the cultures. Among these compounds, we identified the potent antibiotic tropodithietic acid. Finally, toxin-like proteins and other proteins likely involved in the interaction with the eukaryotic host were also upregulated. Altogether, our data suggest that phosphate limitation leads to a pronounced reorganization of FO-BEG1 physiology, involving phosphorus, carbon, and sulfur metabolism; cell morphology; secondary metabolite production; and the expression of virulence-related genes. PMID:25769826

  13. The Daiokanzoto (TJ-84) Kampo Formulation Reduces Virulence Factor Gene Expression in Porphyromonas gingivalis and Possesses Anti-Inflammatory and Anti-Protease Activities

    PubMed Central

    Fournier-Larente, Jade; Azelmat, Jabrane; Yoshioka, Masami; Hinode, Daisuke; Grenier, Daniel

    2016-01-01

    Kampo formulations used in Japan to treat a wide variety of diseases and to promote health are composed of mixtures of crude extracts from the roots, bark, leaves, and rhizomes of a number of herbs. The present study was aimed at identifying the beneficial biological properties of Daiokanzoto (TJ-84), a Kampo formulation composed of crude extracts of Rhubarb rhizomes and Glycyrrhiza roots, with a view to using it as a potential treatment for periodontal disease. Daiokanzoto dose-dependently inhibited the expression of major Porphyromonas gingivalis virulence factors involved in host colonization and tissue destruction. More specifically, Daiokanzoto reduced the expression of the fimA, hagA, rgpA, and rgpB genes, as determined by quantitative real-time PCR. The U937-3xκB-LUC monocyte cell line transfected with a luciferase reporter gene was used to evaluate the anti-inflammatory properties of Daiokanzoto. Daiokanzoto attenuated the P. gingivalis-mediated activation of the NF-κB signaling pathway. It also reduced the secretion of pro-inflammatory cytokines (IL-6 and CXCL8) by lipopolysaccharide-stimulated oral epithelial cells and gingival fibroblasts. Lastly, Daiokanzoto, dose-dependently inhibited the catalytic activity of matrix metalloproteinases (-1 and -9). In conclusion, the present study provided evidence that Daiokanzoto shows potential for treating and/or preventing periodontal disease. The ability of this Kampo formulation to act on both bacterial pathogens and the host inflammatory response, the two etiological components of periodontal disease, is of high therapeutic interest. PMID:26859747

  14. Phosphate Limitation Induces Drastic Physiological Changes, Virulence-Related Gene Expression, and Secondary Metabolite Production in Pseudovibrio sp. Strain FO-BEG1

    PubMed Central

    González, José M.; Bondarev, Vladimir

    2015-01-01

    Phosphorus is a vital nutrient for living organisms and is obtained by bacteria primarily via phosphate uptake. However, phosphate is often scarcely accessible in nature, and there is evidence that in many areas of the ocean, its concentration limits bacterial growth. Surprisingly, the phosphate starvation response has been extensively investigated in different model organisms (e.g., Escherichia coli), but there is a dearth of studies on heterotrophic marine bacteria. In this work, we describe the response of Pseudovibrio sp. strain FO-BEG1, a metabolically versatile alphaproteobacterium and potential symbiont of marine sponges, to phosphate limitation. We compared the physiology, protein expression, and secondary metabolite production under phosphate-limited conditions to those under phosphate surplus conditions. We observed that phosphate limitation had a pleiotropic effect on the physiology of the strain, triggering cell elongation, the accumulation of polyhydroxyalkanoate, the degradation of polyphosphate, and the exchange of membrane lipids in favor of phosphorus-free lipids such as sulfoquinovosyl diacylglycerols. Many proteins involved in the uptake and degradation of phospho-organic compounds were upregulated, together with subunits of the ABC transport system for phosphate. Under conditions of phosphate limitation, FO-BEG1 secreted compounds into the medium that conferred an intense yellow coloration to the cultures. Among these compounds, we identified the potent antibiotic tropodithietic acid. Finally, toxin-like proteins and other proteins likely involved in the interaction with the eukaryotic host were also upregulated. Altogether, our data suggest that phosphate limitation leads to a pronounced reorganization of FO-BEG1 physiology, involving phosphorus, carbon, and sulfur metabolism; cell morphology; secondary metabolite production; and the expression of virulence-related genes. PMID:25769826

  15. The Sensor Histidine Kinase RgfC Affects Group B Streptococcal Virulence Factor Expression Independent of Its Response Regulator RgfA

    PubMed Central

    Gendrin, Claire; Lembo, Annalisa; Whidbey, Christopher; Burnside, Kellie; Berry, Jessica; Ngo, Lisa; Banerjee, Anirban; Xue, Liang; Arrington, Justine; Doran, Kelly S.; Tao, W. Andy

    2015-01-01

    Group B streptococci (GBS; Streptococcus agalactiae) are beta-hemolytic, Gram-positive bacteria that are common asymptomatic colonizers of healthy adults. However, these opportunistic bacteria also cause invasive infections in human newborns and in certain adult populations. To adapt to the various environments encountered during its disease cycle, GBS encodes a number of two-component signaling systems. Previous studies have indicated that the TCS comprising the sensor histidine kinase RgfC and the response regulator RgfA mediate GBS binding to extracellular matrix components, such as fibrinogen. However, in certain GBS clinical isolates, a point mutation in rgfA results in premature truncation of the response regulator. The truncated RgfA protein lacks the C-terminal DNA binding domain necessary for promoter binding and gene regulation. Here, we show that deletion of rgfC in GBS strains lacking a functional RgfA increased systemic infection. Furthermore, infection with the rgfC mutant increased induction of proinflammatory signaling pathways in vivo. Phosphoproteomic analysis revealed that 19 phosphopeptides corresponding to 12 proteins were differentially phosphorylated at aspartate, cysteine, serine, threonine, or tyrosine residues in the rgfC mutant. This included aspartate phosphorylation of a tyrosine kinase, CpsD, and a transcriptional regulator. Consistent with this observation, microarray analysis of the rgfC mutant indicated that >200 genes showed altered expression compared to the isogenic wild-type strain and included transcriptional regulators, transporters, and genes previously associated with GBS pathogenesis. Our observations suggest that in the absence of RgfA, nonspecific RgfC signaling affects the expression of virulence factors and GBS pathogenesis. PMID:25561709

  16. The sensor histidine kinase RgfC affects group B streptococcal virulence factor expression independent of its response regulator RgfA.

    PubMed

    Gendrin, Claire; Lembo, Annalisa; Whidbey, Christopher; Burnside, Kellie; Berry, Jessica; Ngo, Lisa; Banerjee, Anirban; Xue, Liang; Arrington, Justine; Doran, Kelly S; Tao, W Andy; Rajagopal, Lakshmi

    2015-03-01

    Group B streptococci (GBS; Streptococcus agalactiae) are beta-hemolytic, Gram-positive bacteria that are common asymptomatic colonizers of healthy adults. However, these opportunistic bacteria also cause invasive infections in human newborns and in certain adult populations. To adapt to the various environments encountered during its disease cycle, GBS encodes a number of two-component signaling systems. Previous studies have indicated that the TCS comprising the sensor histidine kinase RgfC and the response regulator RgfA mediate GBS binding to extracellular matrix components, such as fibrinogen. However, in certain GBS clinical isolates, a point mutation in rgfA results in premature truncation of the response regulator. The truncated RgfA protein lacks the C-terminal DNA binding domain necessary for promoter binding and gene regulation. Here, we show that deletion of rgfC in GBS strains lacking a functional RgfA increased systemic infection. Furthermore, infection with the rgfC mutant increased induction of proinflammatory signaling pathways in vivo. Phosphoproteomic analysis revealed that 19 phosphopeptides corresponding to 12 proteins were differentially phosphorylated at aspartate, cysteine, serine, threonine, or tyrosine residues in the rgfC mutant. This included aspartate phosphorylation of a tyrosine kinase, CpsD, and a transcriptional regulator. Consistent with this observation, microarray analysis of the rgfC mutant indicated that >200 genes showed altered expression compared to the isogenic wild-type strain and included transcriptional regulators, transporters, and genes previously associated with GBS pathogenesis. Our observations suggest that in the absence of RgfA, nonspecific RgfC signaling affects the expression of virulence factors and GBS pathogenesis. PMID:25561709

  17. Alteration of the Microbiota and Virulence Gene Expression in E. coli O157:H7 in Pig Ligated Intestine with and without AE Lesions

    PubMed Central

    Yu, Hai; Feng, Yanni; Ying, Xin; Gong, Joshua; Gyles, Carlton L.

    2015-01-01

    Background Previously we found that E. coli O157:H7 inoculated into ligated pig intestine formed attaching and effacing (AE) lesions in some pigs but not in others. The present study evaluated changes in the microbial community and in virulence gene expression in E. coli O157:H7 in ligated pig intestine in which the bacteria formed AE lesions or failed to form AE lesions. Methodology/Principal Findings The intestinal microbiota was assessed by RNA-based denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (DGGE) analysis. The DGGE banding patterns showed distinct differences involving two bands which had increased intensity specifically in AE-negative pigs (AE- bands) and several bands which were more abundant in AE-positive pigs. Sequence analysis revealed that the two AE- bands belonged to Veillonella caviae, a species with probiotic properties, and Bacteroides sp. Concurrent with the differences in microbiota, gene expression analysis by quantitative PCR showed that, compared with AE negative pigs, E. coli O157:H7 in AE positive pigs had upregulated genes for putative adhesins, non-LEE encoded nleA and quorum sensing qseF, acid resistance gene ureD, and genes from the locus of enterocyte effacement (LEE). Conclusions/Significance The present study demonstrated that AE-positive pigs had reduced activities or populations of Veillonella caviae and Bacterioides sp. compared with AE-negative pigs. Further studies are required to understand how the microbiota was changed and the role of these organisms in the control of E. coli O157:H7. PMID:26090813

  18. Staphylococcus aureus dynamically adapts global regulators and virulence factor expression in the course from acute to chronic infection.

    PubMed

    Tuchscherr, Lorena; Löffler, Bettina

    2016-02-01

    Staphylococcus aureus is an important pathogen of severe invasive tissue infection, e.g. osteomyelitis that can develop to chronicity and become extremely difficult to treat. Recent research revealed that S. aureus can dynamically switch to small colony variants (SCVs) that are adapted bacterial phenotypes for long-term persistence. The underlying mechanisms of the bacterial switching and adaptation process are largely dependent on an intact Sigma B regulon. As SigB is known as a transcription factor that modulates the stress response of several Gram-positive bacteria, it is most likely required by the bacteria to cope with the intracellular stress conditions. Here, we demonstrate in a long-term infection model of human osteoblasts that S. aureus continuously upregulated the expression of SigB during intracellular persistence. The increased SigB expression was accompanied by upregulation of adhesins and downregulation of toxins, which are characteristics for SCV phenotypes. These data further stress the role of SigB during chronic infections that could be a novel target for preventive or therapeutic measures to avoid chronic infections. PMID:26123224

  19. Fusarium verticillioides SGE1 is required for full virulence and regulates expression of protein effector and secondary metabolite biosynthetic genes.

    PubMed

    Brown, Daren W; Busman, Mark; Proctor, Robert H

    2014-08-01

    The transition from one lifestyle to another in some fungi is initiated by a single orthologous gene, SGE1, that regulates markedly different genes in different fungi. Despite these differences, many of the regulated genes encode effector proteins or proteins involved in the synthesis of secondary metabolites (SM), both of which can contribute to pathogenicity. Fusarium verticillioides is both an endophyte and a pathogen of maize and can grow as a saprophyte on dead plant material. During growth on live maize plants, the fungus can synthesize a number of toxic SM, including fumonisins, fusarins, and fusaric acid, that can contaminate kernels and kernel-based food and feed. In this study, the role of F. verticillioides SGE1 in pathogenicity and secondary metabolism was examined by gene deletion analysis and transcriptomics. SGE1 is not required for vegetative growth or conidiation but is required for wild-type pathogenicity and affects synthesis of multiple SM, including fumonisins and fusarins. Induced expression of SGE1 enhanced or reduced expression of hundreds of genes, including numerous putative effector genes that could contribute to growth in planta; genes encoding cell surface proteins; gene clusters required for synthesis of fusarins, bikaverin, and an unknown metabolite; as well as the gene encoding the fumonisin cluster transcriptional activator. Together, our results indicate that SGE1 has a role in global regulation of transcription in F. verticillioides that impacts but is not absolutely required for secondary metabolism and pathogenicity on maize. PMID:24742071

  20. The Adh1 gene of the fungus Metarhizium anisopliae is expressed during insect colonization and required for full virulence.

    PubMed

    Callejas-Negrete, Olga Alicia; Torres-Guzmán, Juan Carlos; Padilla-Guerrero, Israel Enrique; Esquivel-Naranjo, Ulises; Padilla-Ballesteros, Maria Fernanda; García-Tapia, Adriana; Schrank, Augusto; Salazar-Solís, Eduardo; Gutiérrez-Corona, Félix; González-Hernández, Gloria Angélica

    2015-03-01

    Zymography of alcohol dehydrogenase (ADH) activity in the entomopathogenic fungus Metarhizium anisopliae grown under various conditions revealed that micro-aerobic growth was associated with increased ADH activity. The major ADH protein, AdhIp, was purified to homogeneity by affinity chromatography and has an estimated molecular weight of 41kDa and an isoelectric point (pI) of 6.4. Peptide mass fingerprint analysis allowed the identification and cloning of the gene that encodes this protein, Adh1, as annotated in the M. anisopliae genome database. AdhIp is related to the medium-chain dehydrogenase/reductase (MDR)/zinc-dependent alcohol dehydrogenase-like family and contains conserved ADH sequence motifs, such as the zinc-containing ADH signature, the FAD/NAD binding domain and amino acid residues that are conserved in most microbial ADHs. Semi-quantitative RT-PCR analysis revealed that Adh1 gene expression occurs at low levels during early Plutella xylostella infection and that the Adh1 gene was primarily expressed at larval death and as mycelia emerge from the insect cuticle before conidiation. Antisense-RNA experiments indicated that NAD(+)-dependent ADH activity was diminished by 20-75% in the transformants, and the transformants that had lower ADH activity showed allyl alcohol resistance, which indicates that reduction in ADH activity also occurs in vivo. Bioassays performed using antisense adh1 transformants, which have lower ADH activity, showed that LC50 values were two to five times higher than the wild-type, indicating that AdhIp is required for full capability of the fungus to penetrate and/or colonize the insect. PMID:25534970

  1. Influence of group A streptococcal acid glycoprotein on expression of major virulence factors and internalization by epithelial cells.

    PubMed

    Marouni, Mehran J; Ziomek, Edmund; Sela, Shlomo

    2003-08-01

    A single transposon insertion upstream to the open-reading-frame identified as the streptococcal acid glycoprotein (sagp) gene rendered a Tn916 isolate of Streptococcus pyogenes with elevated susceptibility to internalization by the epithelial cells. The role of SAGP in S. pyogenes internalization was further studied using isogenic mutant containing an in-frame deletion within the sagp gene. The sagp mutant displayed slower growth-rate and showed 5-fold higher internalization efficiency than the parent strain. Transcription of sagp at the logarithmic phase, but not at the stationary phase of the growth was repressed by csrR, the global regulator gene. At the same time, mutation of the sagp gene partially decreased the transcription of hasA, a gene that is required for capsule synthesis. The mutation had no effect on transcription of the emm3 gene, encoding for the M protein. The most striking effect of the sagp mutation was a down-regulation of the streptococcal pyrogenic exotoxin B (SpeB) at both translational and transcriptional level. Treatment of the SAGP mutant cells with the exogenous mSpeB (mature protease) only partially reduced their susceptibility to internalization. The exogenous mSpeB was more effective in reducing the internalization efficiency of a speB mutant and brought it to the level observed for the parent strain. In overall, results show that CsrR, directly or indirectly, affects the expression of SAGP, and that the SAGP modulates expression of not only SpeB, but also other genes that facilitate S. pyogenes internalization. PMID:12901845

  2. In Vivo Assessment of Growth and Virulence Gene Expression during Commensal and Pathogenic Lifestyles of luxABCDE-Tagged Enterococcus faecalis Strains in Murine Gastrointestinal and Intravenous Infection Models

    PubMed Central

    Casey, Pat G.; Hill, Colin; Diep, Dzung B.; Nes, Ingolf F.

    2013-01-01

    Cytolysin and gelatinase are prominent pathogenicity determinants associated with highly virulent Enterococcus faecalis strains. In an effort to explore the expression profiles of these virulence traits in vivo, we have employed E. faecalis variants expressing the luxABCDE cassette under the control of either the P16S, cytolysin, or gelatinase promoter for infections of Galleria mellonella caterpillars and mice. Systemic infection of G. mellonella with bioluminescence-tagged E. faecalis MMH594 revealed temporal regulation of both gelatinase and cytolysin promoters and demonstrated that these traits were induced in response to the host environment. Gavage of mice pretreated perorally with antibiotics resulted in efficient colonization of the murine gastrointestinal tract (GIT) in a strain-dependent manner, where the commensal baby isolate EF62 was more persistent than the nosocomial isolate MMH594. A highly significant correlation (R2 > 0.94) was found between bioluminescence and the CFU counts in mouse fecal samples. Both strains showed similar preferences for growth and persistence in the ileum, cecum, and colon. Cytolysin expression was uniform in these compartments of the intestinal lumen. In spite of high numbers (109 CFU/g of intestinal matter) in the ileum, cecum, and colon, no evidence of translocation or systemic infection could be observed. In the murine intravenous infection model, cytolysin expression was readily detected in the liver, kidneys, and bladder. At 72 h postinfection, the highest bacterial loads were found in the liver, kidneys, and spleen, with organ-specific expression levels of cytolysin ∼400- and ∼900-fold higher in the spleen and heart, respectively, than in the liver and kidneys. Taken together, this system based on the bioluminescence imaging technology is established as a new, powerful method to monitor the differential regulation of E. faecalis virulence determinants and to study the spatiotemporal course of infection in living

  3. Virulence Gene Regulation in Escherichia coli.

    PubMed

    Mellies, Jay L; Barron, Alex M S

    2006-01-01

    Escherichia colicauses three types of illnesses in humans: diarrhea, urinary tract infections, and meningitis in newborns. The acquisition of virulence-associated genes and the ability to properly regulate these, often horizontally transferred, loci distinguishes pathogens from the normally harmless commensal E. coli found within the human intestine. This review addresses our current understanding of virulence gene regulation in several important diarrhea-causing pathotypes, including enteropathogenic, enterohemorrhagic,enterotoxigenic, and enteroaggregativeE. coli-EPEC, EHEC, ETEC and EAEC, respectively. The intensely studied regulatory circuitry controlling virulence of uropathogenicE. coli, or UPEC, is also reviewed, as is that of MNEC, a common cause of meningitis in neonates. Specific topics covered include the regulation of initial attachment events necessary for infection, environmental cues affecting virulence gene expression, control of attaching and effacing lesionformation, and control of effector molecule expression and secretion via the type III secretion systems by EPEC and EHEC. How phage control virulence and the expression of the Stx toxins of EHEC, phase variation, quorum sensing, and posttranscriptional regulation of virulence determinants are also addressed. A number of important virulence regulators are described, including the AraC-like molecules PerA of EPEC, CfaR and Rns of ETEC, and AggR of EAEC;the Ler protein of EPEC and EHEC;RfaH of UPEC;and the H-NS molecule that acts to silence gene expression. The regulatory circuitry controlling virulence of these greatly varied E. colipathotypes is complex, but common themes offerinsight into the signals and regulators necessary forE. coli disease progression. PMID:26443571

  4. Complementation analysis of Agrobacterium tumefaciens Ti plasmid virB genes by use of a vir promoter expression vector: virB9, virB10, and virB11 are essential virulence genes.

    PubMed

    Ward, J E; Dale, E M; Christie, P J; Nester, E W; Binns, A N

    1990-09-01

    The virB gene products of the Agrobacterium tumefaciens tumor-inducing (Ti) plasmid have been proposed to mediate T-DNA transport through the bacterial cell wall into plant cells. Previous genetic analysis of the approximately 9.5-kilobase-pair virB operon has been limited to transposon insertion mutagenesis. Due to the polarity of the transposon insertions, only the last gene in the operon, virB11, is known to provide an essential virulence function. We have now begun to assess the contribution of the other virB genes to virulence. First, several previously isolated Tn3-HoHo1 insertions in the 3' end of the virB operon were precisely mapped by nucleotide sequence analysis. Protein extracts from A. tumefaciens strains harboring these insertions on the Ti plasmid were subjected to immunostaining analysis with VirB4-, VirB10-, and VirB11-specific antisera to determine the effect of the insertion on virB gene expression. In this manner, avirulent mutants containing polar insertions in the virB9 and virB10 genes were identified. To carry out a complementation analysis with these virB mutants, expression vectors were constructed that allow cloned genes to be expressed from the virB promoter in A. tumefaciens. These plasmids were used to express combinations of the virB9, virB10, and virB11 genes in trans in the virB insertion mutants, thereby creating strains lacking only one of these three virB gene products. Virulence assays on Kalanchoe daigremontiana demonstrated that in addition to virB11, the virB9 and virB10 genes are required for tumorigenicity. PMID:2203743

  5. RpoS Is Not Central to the General Stress Response in Borrelia burgdorferi but Does Control Expression of One or More Essential Virulence Determinants

    PubMed Central

    Caimano, Melissa J.; Eggers, Christian H.; Hazlett, Karsten R. O.; Radolf, Justin D.

    2004-01-01

    membrane chambers at a level equivalent to that of the wild type, they were avirulent in mice. Lastly, RT-PCR analysis of the ospE-ospF-elp paralogous lipoprotein families complements earlier findings that many temperature-inducible borrelial loci are controlled in an RpoSBb-independent manner. Together, these data point to fundamental differences between the role(s) of RpoS in B. burgdorferi and that in E. coli. Rather than functioning as a master regulator, RpoSBb appears to serve as a stress-responsive activator of a subset of virulence determinants that, together with the RpoS-independent, differentially expressed regulon, encompass the spirochete's genetic programs required for mammalian host adaptation. PMID:15501774

  6. The RNA-Binding Chaperone Hfq Is an Important Global Regulator of Gene Expression in Pasteurella multocida and Plays a Crucial Role in Production of a Number of Virulence Factors, Including Hyaluronic Acid Capsule.

    PubMed

    Mégroz, Marianne; Kleifeld, Oded; Wright, Amy; Powell, David; Harrison, Paul; Adler, Ben; Harper, Marina; Boyce, John D

    2016-05-01

    The Gram-negative bacterium Pasteurella multocida is the causative agent of a number of economically important animal diseases, including avian fowl cholera. Numerous P. multocida virulence factors have been identified, including capsule, lipopolysaccharide (LPS), and filamentous hemagglutinin, but little is known about how the expression of these virulence factors is regulated. Hfq is an RNA-binding protein that facilitates riboregulation via interaction with small noncoding RNA (sRNA) molecules and their mRNA targets. Here, we show that a P. multocida hfq mutant produces significantly less hyaluronic acid capsule during all growth phases and displays reduced in vivo fitness. Transcriptional and proteomic analyses of the hfq mutant during mid-exponential-phase growth revealed altered transcript levels for 128 genes and altered protein levels for 78 proteins. Further proteomic analyses of the hfq mutant during the early exponential growth phase identified 106 proteins that were produced at altered levels. Both the transcript and protein levels for genes/proteins involved in capsule biosynthesis were reduced in the hfq mutant, as were the levels of the filamentous hemagglutinin protein PfhB2 and its secretion partner LspB2. In contrast, there were increased expression levels of three LPS biosynthesis genes, encoding proteins involved in phosphocholine and phosphoethanolamine addition to LPS, suggesting that these genes are negatively regulated by Hfq-dependent mechanisms. Taken together, these data provide the first evidence that Hfq plays a crucial role in regulating the global expression of P. multocida genes, including the regulation of key P. multocida virulence factors, capsule, LPS, and filamentous hemagglutinin. PMID:26883595

  7. Transcriptome analysis of Escherichia coli O157:H7 grown in vitro in the sterile-filtrated cecal content of human gut microbiota associated rats reveals an adaptive expression of metabolic and virulence genes.

    PubMed

    Le Bihan, Guillaume; Jubelin, Grégory; Garneau, Philippe; Bernalier-Donadille, Annick; Martin, Christine; Beaudry, Francis; Harel, Josée

    2015-01-01

    In developed countries, enterohemorrhagic Escherichia coli (EHEC) O157:H7 is a leading cause of bloody diarrhea and renal failures in human. Understanding strategies employed by EHEC to colonize the intestine is of major importance since to date no cure exists to eradicate the pathogen. In this study, the adaptive response of EHEC to the intestinal milieu conditioned by a human microbiota was examined. A transcriptomic analysis was performed on the EHEC strain EDL933 incubated in vitro in the sterile-filtrated cecal content of human microbiota-associated rats (HMC) compared with EDL933 incubated in the sterile-filtrated cecal content of germ-free rat (GFC). EDL933 switches from a glycolytic metabolic profile in the GFC to an anaplerotic metabolic profile in HMC. The expression of several catabolism genes was strongly affected such as those involved in the utilization of sugars, glycerol, N-acetylneuraminic acid, amino acids and secondary metabolites. Interestingly, expression level of critical EHEC O157:H7 virulence genes including genes from the locus of enterocyte effacement was reduced in HMC. Altogether, these results contribute to the understanding of EHEC adaptive response to a digestive content and highlight the ability of the microbiota to repress EHEC virulence gene expression. PMID:25290220

  8. Pseudomonas aeruginosa Virulence and Pathogenesis Issues

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Regulation of gene expression can occur through cell-cell communication or quorum sensing (QS) via the production of small molecules called autoinducers. QS is known to control expression of a number of virulence factors. Another form of gene regulation which allows the bacteria to rapidly adapt t...

  9. ProNodal acts via FGFR3 to govern duration of Shh expression in the prechordal mesoderm

    PubMed Central

    Ellis, Pamela S.; Burbridge, Sarah; Soubes, Sandrine; Ohyama, Kyoji; Ben-Haim, Nadav; Chen, Canhe; Dale, Kim; Shen, Michael M.; Constam, Daniel; Placzek, Marysia

    2015-01-01

    The secreted glycoprotein sonic hedgehog (Shh) is expressed in the prechordal mesoderm, where it plays a crucial role in induction and patterning of the ventral forebrain. Currently little is known about how Shh is regulated in prechordal tissue. Here we show that in the embryonic chick, Shh is expressed transiently in prechordal mesoderm, and is governed by unprocessed Nodal. Exposure of prechordal mesoderm microcultures to Nodal-conditioned medium, the Nodal inhibitor CerS, or to an ALK4/5/7 inhibitor reveals that Nodal is required to maintain both Shh and Gsc expression, but whereas Gsc is largely maintained through canonical signalling, Nodal signals through a non-canonical route to maintain Shh. Further, Shh expression can be maintained by a recombinant Nodal cleavage mutant, proNodal, but not by purified mature Nodal. A number of lines of evidence suggest that proNodal acts via FGFR3. ProNodal and FGFR3 co-immunoprecipitate and proNodal increases FGFR3 tyrosine phosphorylation. In microcultures, soluble FGFR3 abolishes Shh without affecting Gsc expression. Further, prechordal mesoderm cells in which Fgfr3 expression is reduced by Fgfr3 siRNA fail to bind to proNodal. Finally, targeted electroporation of Fgfr3 siRNA to prechordal mesoderm in vivo results in premature Shh downregulation without affecting Gsc. We report an inverse correlation between proNodal-FGFR3 signalling and pSmad1/5/8, and show that proNodal-FGFR3 signalling antagonises BMP-mediated pSmad1/5/8 signalling, which is poised to downregulate Shh. Our studies suggest that proNodal/FGFR3 signalling governs Shh duration by repressing canonical BMP signalling, and that local BMPs rapidly silence Shh once endogenous Nodal-FGFR3 signalling is downregulated. PMID:26417042

  10. ProNodal acts via FGFR3 to govern duration of Shh expression in the prechordal mesoderm.

    PubMed

    Ellis, Pamela S; Burbridge, Sarah; Soubes, Sandrine; Ohyama, Kyoji; Ben-Haim, Nadav; Chen, Canhe; Dale, Kim; Shen, Michael M; Constam, Daniel; Placzek, Marysia

    2015-11-15

    The secreted glycoprotein sonic hedgehog (Shh) is expressed in the prechordal mesoderm, where it plays a crucial role in induction and patterning of the ventral forebrain. Currently little is known about how Shh is regulated in prechordal tissue. Here we show that in the embryonic chick, Shh is expressed transiently in prechordal mesoderm, and is governed by unprocessed Nodal. Exposure of prechordal mesoderm microcultures to Nodal-conditioned medium, the Nodal inhibitor CerS, or to an ALK4/5/7 inhibitor reveals that Nodal is required to maintain both Shh and Gsc expression, but whereas Gsc is largely maintained through canonical signalling, Nodal signals through a non-canonical route to maintain Shh. Further, Shh expression can be maintained by a recombinant Nodal cleavage mutant, proNodal, but not by purified mature Nodal. A number of lines of evidence suggest that proNodal acts via FGFR3. ProNodal and FGFR3 co-immunoprecipitate and proNodal increases FGFR3 tyrosine phosphorylation. In microcultures, soluble FGFR3 abolishes Shh without affecting Gsc expression. Further, prechordal mesoderm cells in which Fgfr3 expression is reduced by Fgfr3 siRNA fail to bind to proNodal. Finally, targeted electroporation of Fgfr3 siRNA to prechordal mesoderm in vivo results in premature Shh downregulation without affecting Gsc. We report an inverse correlation between proNodal-FGFR3 signalling and pSmad1/5/8, and show that proNodal-FGFR3 signalling antagonises BMP-mediated pSmad1/5/8 signalling, which is poised to downregulate Shh. Our studies suggest that proNodal/FGFR3 signalling governs Shh duration by repressing canonical BMP signalling, and that local BMPs rapidly silence Shh once endogenous Nodal-FGFR3 signalling is downregulated. PMID:26417042

  11. Unraveling the molecular mechanism governing the tissue specific expression of IFNλR1.

    PubMed

    Akhtar, Hashaam; Hamming, Ole Jensen; Jan, Syed Umer; Akhtar, Samar; Terczyn' ska-Dyla, Ewa; Siupka, Piotr; Shafique, Adeena; Hartmann, Rune; Sadia, Hajra

    2016-05-01

    The functional receptor for type III interferons (IFNs) is a heterodimer of IFNLR1 and IL10R2. IFNLR1 is expressed in a highly tissue specific manner, with epithelial and liver tissue as the prime expressing tissues in humans. However, knowledge about the molecular pathways responsible for regulating the expression of IFNLR1 is yet unknown. In this study, various bioinformatics tools were used to predict the scores of signal peptides of IFNλR1 and IFNαR1, which was considered as an important difference in the expression of both receptors or participation in regulating the IFNLR1 gene. In silico study revealed that the signal peptide of IFNαR1 had more potential than the signal peptide of IFNλR1 but changing the signal peptide of wild type IFNλR1 with the signal peptide of IFNαR1 in wet lab had barely shown any differences. Selective expression of IFNλR1 was considered to be a plus point towards the targeted anti-viral activity of IFNλs but artificial control on its expression will surely make IFNλs a better drug with enhanced activity. The results of this study may help us in contributing some understanding towards the mechanisms involved in the selective expression of IFNLR1 and exceptionalities involved. PMID:27166550

  12. KSRP is critical in governing hepatic lipid metabolism through controlling Per2 expression

    PubMed Central

    Chou, Chu-Fang; Zhu, Xiaolin; Lin, Yi-Yu; Gamble, Karen L.; Garvey, W. Timothy; Chen, Ching-Yi

    2015-01-01

    Hepatic lipid metabolism is controlled by integrated metabolic pathways. Excess accumulation of hepatic TG is a hallmark of nonalcoholic fatty liver disease, which is associated with obesity and insulin resistance. Here, we show that KH-type splicing regulatory protein (KSRP) ablation reduces hepatic TG levels and diet-induced hepatosteatosis. Expression of period 2 (Per2) is increased during the dark period, and circadian oscillations of several core clock genes are altered with a delayed phase in Ksrp−/− livers. Diurnal expression of some lipid metabolism genes is also disturbed with reduced expression of genes involved in de novo lipogenesis. Using primary hepatocytes, we demonstrate that KSRP promotes decay of Per2 mRNA through an RNA-protein interaction and show that increased Per2 expression is responsible for the phase delay in cycling of several clock genes in the absence of KSRP. Similar to Ksrp−/− livers, both expression of lipogenic genes and intracellular TG levels are also reduced in Ksrp−/− hepatocytes due to increased Per2 expression. Using heterologous mRNA reporters, we show that the AU-rich element-containing 3′ untranslated region of Per2 is responsible for KSRP-dependent mRNA decay. These findings implicate that KSRP is an important regulator of circadian expression of lipid metabolism genes in the liver likely through controlling Per2 mRNA stability. PMID:25514904

  13. Cloning, expression, purification and crystallization of a pair of novel virulence factors, SghA and SghR, from Agrobacterium tumefaciens

    SciTech Connect

    Ye, Fuzhou; Wang, Chao; Fu, Qinqin; Zhang, Lian-hui; Gao, Yong-gui

    2015-08-25

    The crystallization of the novel virulence factors SghA and SghR is reported. Two proteins, SghA and SghR, which were recently identified and characterized as novel bacterial virulence factors regulating the infection of plant hosts by Agrobacterium, were cloned, overexpressed and purified with high yield. Both SghA and SghR form dimers in solution. The purified SghA and SghR were crystallized and the crystals diffracted to 1.9 and 2.1 Å resolution, respectively. Data were collected and processed, and the crystallographic parameters were within acceptable ranges. These results will help in the determination of their structures in order to uncover the molecular mechanism of how these two proteins together control the release of plant defence signals against agrobacteria during pathogen–host interaction.

  14. Deciphering the principles that govern mutually exclusive expression of Plasmodium falciparum clag3 genes

    PubMed Central

    Rovira-Graells, Núria; Crowley, Valerie M.; Bancells, Cristina; Mira-Martínez, Sofía; Ribas de Pouplana, Lluís; Cortés, Alfred

    2015-01-01

    The product of the Plasmodium falciparum genes clag3.1 and clag3.2 plays a fundamental role in malaria parasite biology by determining solute transport into infected erythrocytes. Expression of the two clag3 genes is mutually exclusive, such that a single parasite expresses only one of the two genes at a time. Here we investigated the properties and mechanisms of clag3 mutual exclusion using transgenic parasite lines with extra copies of clag3 promoters located either in stable episomes or integrated in the parasite genome. We found that the additional clag3 promoters in these transgenic lines are silenced by default, but under strong selective pressure parasites with more than one clag3 promoter simultaneously active are observed, demonstrating that clag3 mutual exclusion is strongly favored but it is not strict. We show that silencing of clag3 genes is associated with the repressive histone mark H3K9me3 even in parasites with unusual clag3 expression patterns, and we provide direct evidence for heterochromatin spreading in P. falciparum. We also found that expression of a neighbor ncRNA correlates with clag3.1 expression. Altogether, our results reveal a scenario where fitness costs and non-deterministic molecular processes that favor mutual exclusion shape the expression patterns of this important gene family. PMID:26202963

  15. Spaceflight Effects on Virulence of Pseudomonas Aeruginosa

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Broadway, S.; Goins, T.; Crandell, C.; Richards, C.; Patel, M.; Pyle, B.

    2008-06-01

    Pseudomonas aeruginosa is an opportunistic pathogen found in the environment. It is known to infect the immunocompromised. The organism has about 25 virulence genes that play different roles in disease processes. Several exotoxin proteins may be produced, including ExoA, ExoS, ExoT and ExoY, and other virulence factors. In spaceflight, possible increased expression of P. aeruginosa virulence proteins could increase health risks for spaceflight crews who experience decreased immunity. Cultures of P. aeruginosa strains PA01 and PA103 grown on orbit on Shuttle Endeavour flight STS-123 vs. static ground controls were used for analysis. The production of ETA was quantitated using an ELISA procedure. Results showed that while flight cultures of PA103 produced slightly more ETA than corresponding ground controls, the opposite was found for PA01. While it appears that spaceflight has little effect on ETA, stimulation of other virulence factors could cause increased virulence of this organism in space flight. Similar increased virulence in spaceflight has been observed for other bacteria. This is important because astronauts may be more susceptible to opportunistic pathogens including P. aeruginosa.

  16. Development and characterization of a synthetic infectious cDNA clone of the virulent Bucyrus strain of equine arteritis virus expressing mCherry (red fluorescent protein).

    PubMed

    Mondal, Shankar P; Cook, R Frank; Chelvarajan, R Lakshman; Henney, Pamela J; Timoney, Peter J; Balasuriya, Udeni B R

    2016-04-01

    Strains of equine arteritis virus (EAV) differ in their virulence phenotypes, causing anywhere from subclinical infections to severe disease in horses. Here, we describe the in silico design and de novo synthesis of a full-length infectious cDNA clone of the horse-adapted virulent Bucyrus strain (VBS) of EAV encoding mCherry along with in vitro characterization of the progeny virions (EAV sVBSmCherry) in terms of host-cell tropism, replicative capacity and stability of the mCherry coding sequences following sequential passage in cell culture. The relative stability of the mCherry sequence during sequential cell culture passage coupled with a comparable host-cell range phenotype (equine endothelial cells, CD3(+) T cells and CD14(+) monocytes) to parental EAV VBS suggest that EAV-sVBSmCherry-derived virus could become a valuable research tool for identification of host-cell tropism determinants and for characterization of the viral proteins involved in virus attachment and entry into different subpopulations of peripheral blood mononuclear cells. Furthermore, this study demonstrates that advances in nucleic acid synthesis technology permit synthesis of complex viral genomes with overlapping genes like those of arteriviruses, thereby circumventing the need for complicated molecular cloning techniques. In summary, de novo nucleic acid synthesis technology facilitates innovative viral vector design without the tedium and risks posed by more-conventional laboratory techniques. PMID:26711457

  17. Virulence factors in Escherichia coli urinary tract infection.

    PubMed Central

    Johnson, J R

    1991-01-01

    Uropathogenic strains of Escherichia coli are characterized by the expression of distinctive bacterial properties, products, or structures referred to as virulence factors because they help the organism overcome host defenses and colonize or invade the urinary tract. Virulence factors of recognized importance in the pathogenesis of urinary tract infection (UTI) include adhesins (P fimbriae, certain other mannose-resistant adhesins, and type 1 fimbriae), the aerobactin system, hemolysin, K capsule, and resistance to serum killing. This review summarizes the virtual explosion of information regarding the epidemiology, biochemistry, mechanisms of action, and genetic basis of these urovirulence factors that has occurred in the past decade and identifies areas in need of further study. Virulence factor expression is more common among certain genetically related groups of E. coli which constitute virulent clones within the larger E. coli population. In general, the more virulence factors a strain expresses, the more severe an infection it is able to cause. Certain virulence factors specifically favor the development of pyelonephritis, others favor cystitis, and others favor asymptomatic bacteriuria. The currently defined virulence factors clearly contribute to the virulence of wild-type strains but are usually insufficient in themselves to transform an avirulent organism into a pathogen, demonstrating that other as-yet-undefined virulence properties await discovery. Virulence factor testing is a useful epidemiological and research tool but as yet has no defined clinical role. Immunological and biochemical anti-virulence factor interventions are effective in animal models of UTI and hold promise for the prevention of UTI in humans. Images PMID:1672263

  18. Escherichia coli O157:H7 Cells Exposed to Lettuce Leaf Lysate in Refrigerated Conditions Exhibit Differential Expression of Selected Virulence and Adhesion-Related Genes with Altered Mammalian Cell Adherence.

    PubMed

    Kennedy, Nicole M; Mukherjee, Nabanita; Banerjee, Pratik

    2016-07-01

    Contamination by and persistence of pathogenic bacteria in ready-to-eat produce have emerged as significant food safety and public health concerns. Viable produceborne pathogens cope with several stresses (e.g., temperature fluctuations and lowtemperature storage) during production and storage of the commodities. In this study, we investigated the impact of transient cold shock on Escherichia coli O157:H7 (EcO157) cells in a produce matrix (romaine lettuce leaf lysate). EcO157 cells were exposed to 25°C for 1 h, 4°C for 1 h, and 4°C for 10 min in lettuce lysate. The expression of selected genes coding for virulence, stress response, and heat and cold shock proteins was quantified by real-time quantitative reverse transcription PCR assay. Treated EcO157 cells adhered to MAC-T mammalian cells were enumerated by in vitro bioassay. Expression of the Shiga toxin 1 gene (stx1a) was upregulated significantly (P < 0.05) upon cold shock treatments, but virulence genes related to EcO157 attachment (eaeA, lpfA, and hcpA) were down-regulated. Two key members of the cold shock regulon, cold shock protein (cspA) and gyrA, were significantly induced (P < 0.05) at the refrigeration temperature (4°C). Significant upregulation of an SOS response gene, recA, was also observed. E. coli heat shock regulon member grpE was induced, but a universal stress protein (uspA) was downregulated at the refrigeration temperatures in lettuce lysate. The adhesion assay revealed a temperature-dependent reduction in the attachment of cold-shocked EcO157 cells. The results of the current study indicate a reduction in the attachment of cold-shocked EcO157 to epithelial cells and higher levels of Shiga toxin gene expression at the molecular level. PMID:27357048

  19. Epigenetic modulation of gene expression governs the brain's response to injury.

    PubMed

    Simon, Roger P

    2016-06-20

    Mild stress from ischemia, seizure, hypothermia, or infection can produce a transient neuroprotected state in the brain. In the neuroprotected state, the brain responds differently to a severe stress and sustains less injury. At the genomic level, the response of the neuroprotected brain to a severe stress is characterized by widespread differential regulation of genes with diverse functions. This reprogramming of gene expression observed in the neuroprotected brain in response to a stress is consistent with an epigenetic model of regulation mediated by changes in DNA methylation and histone modification. Here, we summarize our evolving understanding of the molecular basis for endogenous neuroprotection and review recent findings that implicate DNA methylation and protein mediators of histone modification as epigenetic regulators of the brain's response to injury. PMID:26739198

  20. Expression and Functional Characterization of the Agrobacterium VirB2 Amino Acid Substitution Variants in T-pilus Biogenesis, Virulence, and Transient Transformation Efficiency

    PubMed Central

    Wu, Hung-Yi; Chen, Chao-Ying; Lai, Erh-Min

    2014-01-01

    Agrobacterium tumefaciens is a phytopathogenic bacterium that causes crown gall disease by transferring transferred DNA (T-DNA) into the plant genome. The translocation process is mediated by the type IV secretion system (T4SS) consisting of the VirD4 coupling protein and 11 VirB proteins (VirB1 to VirB11). All VirB proteins are required for the production of T-pilus, which consists of processed VirB2 (T-pilin) and VirB5 as major and minor subunits, respectively. VirB2 is an essential component of T4SS, but the roles of VirB2 and the assembled T-pilus in Agrobacterium virulence and the T-DNA transfer process remain unknown. Here, we generated 34 VirB2 amino acid substitution variants to study the functions of VirB2 involved in VirB2 stability, extracellular VirB2/T-pilus production and virulence of A. tumefaciens. From the capacity for extracellular VirB2 production (ExB2+ or ExB2−) and tumorigenesis on tomato stems (Vir+ or Vir−), the mutants could be classified into three groups: ExB2−/Vir−, ExB2−/Vir+, and ExB2+/Vir+. We also confirmed by electron microscopy that five ExB2−/Vir+ mutants exhibited a wild-type level of virulence with their deficiency in T-pilus formation. Interestingly, although the five T-pilus−/Vir+ uncoupling mutants retained a wild-type level of tumorigenesis efficiency on tomato stems and/or potato tuber discs, their transient transformation efficiency in Arabidopsis seedlings was highly attenuated. In conclusion, we have provided evidence for a role of T-pilus in Agrobacterium transformation process and have identified the domains and amino acid residues critical for VirB2 stability, T-pilus biogenesis, tumorigenesis, and transient transformation efficiency. PMID:24971727

  1. Novel Inhibitors of Bacterial Virulence: Development of 5,6-dihydrobenzo[h]quinazolin-4(3H)-ones for the Inhibition of Group A Streptococcal Streptokinase Expression

    PubMed Central

    Yestrepsky, Bryan D.; Xu, Yuanxi; Breen, Meghan E.; Li, Xiaoqin; Rajeswaran, Walajapet G.; Ryu, Jenny G.; Sorenson, Roderick J.; Tsume, Yasuhiro; Wilson, Michael W.; Zhang, Wenpeng; Sun, Duxin; Sun, Hongmin; Larsen, Scott D.

    2013-01-01

    Resistance to antibiotics is an increasingly dire threat to human health that warrants the development of new modes of treating infection. We recently identified 1 (CCG-2979) as an inhibitor of the expression of streptokinase, a critical virulence factor in Group A Streptococcus that endows blood-borne bacteria with fibrinolytic capabilities. In this report, we describe the synthesis and biological evaluation of a series of novel 5,6-dihydrobenzo[h]quinazolin-4(3H)-one analogs of 1 undertaken with the goal of improving the modest potency of the lead. In addition to achieving an over 35-fold increase in potency, we identified structural modifications that improve the solubility and metabolic stability of the scaffold. The efficacy of two new compounds 12c (CCG-203592) and 12k (CCG-205363) against biofilm formation in Staphylococcus aureus represents a promising additional mode of action for this novel class of compounds. PMID:23433668

  2. Bile Salts Affect Expression of Escherichia coli O157:H7 Genes for Virulence and Iron Acquisition, and Promote Growth under Iron Limiting Conditions

    PubMed Central

    Hamner, Steve; McInnerney, Kate; Williamson, Kerry; Franklin, Michael J.; Ford, Timothy E.

    2013-01-01

    Bile salts exhibit potent antibacterial properties, acting as detergents to disrupt cell membranes and as DNA-damaging agents. Although bacteria inhabiting the intestinal tract are able to resist bile’s antimicrobial effects, relatively little is known about how bile influences virulence of enteric pathogens. Escherichia coli O157:H7 is an important pathogen of humans, capable of causing severe diarrhea and more serious sequelae. In this study, the transcriptome response of E. coli O157:H7 to bile was determined. Bile exposure induced significant changes in mRNA levels of genes related to virulence potential, including a reduction of mRNA for the 41 genes making up the locus of enterocyte effacement (LEE) pathogenicity island. Bile treatment had an unusual effect on mRNA levels for the entire flagella-chemotaxis regulon, resulting in two- to four-fold increases in mRNA levels for genes associated with the flagella hook-basal body structure, but a two-fold decrease for “late” flagella genes associated with the flagella filament, stator motor, and chemotaxis. Bile salts also caused increased mRNA levels for seventeen genes associated with iron scavenging and metabolism, and counteracted the inhibitory effect of the iron chelating agent 2,2’-dipyridyl on growth of E. coli O157:H7. These findings suggest that E. coli O157:H7 may use bile as an environmental signal to adapt to changing conditions associated with the small intestine, including adaptation to an iron-scarce environment. PMID:24058617

  3. Virulence gene regulation inside and outside.

    PubMed

    DiRita, V J; Engleberg, N C; Heath, A; Miller, A; Crawford, J A; Yu, R

    2000-05-29

    Much knowledge about microbial gene regulation and virulence is derived from genetic and biochemical studies done outside of hosts. The aim of this review is to correlate observations made in vitro and in vivo with two different bacterial pathogens in which the nature of regulated gene expression leading to virulence is quite different. The first is Vibrio cholerae, in which the concerted action of a complicated regulatory cascade involving several transcription activators leads ultimately to expression of cholera toxin and the toxin-coregulated pilus. The regulatory cascade is active in vivo and is also required for maintenance of V. cholerae in the intestinal tract during experimental infection. Nevertheless, specific signals predicted to be generated in vivo, such as bile and a temperature of 37 degrees C, have a severe down-modulating effect on activation of toxin and pilus expression. Another unusual aspect of gene regulation in this system is the role played by inner membrane proteins that activate transcription. Although the topology of these proteins suggests an appealing model for signal transduction leading to virulence gene expression, experimental evidence suggests that such a model may be simplistic. In Streptococcus pyogenes, capsule production is critical for virulence in an animal model of necrotizing skin infection. Yet capsule is apparently produced to high levels only from mutation in a two-component regulatory system, CsrR and CsrS. Thus it seems that in V. cholerae a complex regulatory pathway has evolved to control virulence by induction of gene expression in vivo, whereas in S. pyogenes at least one mode of pathogenicity is potentiated by the absence of regulation. PMID:10874738

  4. Salmonella promotes virulence by repressing cellulose production

    PubMed Central

    Pontes, Mauricio H.; Lee, Eun-Jin; Choi, Jeongjoon; Groisman, Eduardo A.

    2015-01-01

    Cellulose is the most abundant organic polymer on Earth. In bacteria, cellulose confers protection against environmental insults and is a constituent of biofilms typically formed on abiotic surfaces. We report that, surprisingly, Salmonella enterica serovar Typhimurium makes cellulose when inside macrophages. We determine that preventing cellulose synthesis increases virulence, whereas stimulation of cellulose synthesis inside macrophages decreases virulence. An attenuated mutant lacking the mgtC gene exhibited increased cellulose levels due to increased expression of the cellulose synthase gene bcsA and of cyclic diguanylate, the allosteric activator of the BcsA protein. Inactivation of bcsA restored wild-type virulence to the Salmonella mgtC mutant, but not to other attenuated mutants displaying a wild-type phenotype regarding cellulose. Our findings indicate that a virulence determinant can promote pathogenicity by repressing a pathogen's antivirulence trait. Moreover, they suggest that controlling antivirulence traits increases long-term pathogen fitness by mediating a trade-off between acute virulence and transmission. PMID:25848006

  5. Salmonella promotes virulence by repressing cellulose production.

    PubMed

    Pontes, Mauricio H; Lee, Eun-Jin; Choi, Jeongjoon; Groisman, Eduardo A

    2015-04-21

    Cellulose is the most abundant organic polymer on Earth. In bacteria, cellulose confers protection against environmental insults and is a constituent of biofilms typically formed on abiotic surfaces. We report that, surprisingly, Salmonella enterica serovar Typhimurium makes cellulose when inside macrophages. We determine that preventing cellulose synthesis increases virulence, whereas stimulation of cellulose synthesis inside macrophages decreases virulence. An attenuated mutant lacking the mgtC gene exhibited increased cellulose levels due to increased expression of the cellulose synthase gene bcsA and of cyclic diguanylate, the allosteric activator of the BcsA protein. Inactivation of bcsA restored wild-type virulence to the Salmonella mgtC mutant, but not to other attenuated mutants displaying a wild-type phenotype regarding cellulose. Our findings indicate that a virulence determinant can promote pathogenicity by repressing a pathogen's antivirulence trait. Moreover, they suggest that controlling antivirulence traits increases long-term pathogen fitness by mediating a trade-off between acute virulence and transmission. PMID:25848006

  6. Cryptosporidium Pathogenicity and Virulence

    PubMed Central

    Bouzid, Maha; Chalmers, Rachel M.; Tyler, Kevin M.

    2013-01-01

    Cryptosporidium is a protozoan parasite of medical and veterinary importance that causes gastroenteritis in a variety of vertebrate hosts. Several studies have reported different degrees of pathogenicity and virulence among Cryptosporidium species and isolates of the same species as well as evidence of variation in host susceptibility to infection. The identification and validation of Cryptosporidium virulence factors have been hindered by the renowned difficulties pertaining to the in vitro culture and genetic manipulation of this parasite. Nevertheless, substantial progress has been made in identifying putative virulence factors for Cryptosporidium. This progress has been accelerated since the publication of the Cryptosporidium parvum and C. hominis genomes, with the characterization of over 25 putative virulence factors identified by using a variety of immunological and molecular techniques and which are proposed to be involved in aspects of host-pathogen interactions from adhesion and locomotion to invasion and proliferation. Progress has also been made in the contribution of host factors that are associated with variations in both the severity and risk of infection. Here we provide a review comprised of the current state of knowledge on Cryptosporidium infectivity, pathogenesis, and transmissibility in light of our contemporary understanding of microbial virulence. PMID:23297262

  7. Parasitoid wasp virulence

    PubMed Central

    Mortimer, Nathan T

    2013-01-01

    In nature, larvae of the fruit fly Drosophila melanogaster are commonly infected by parasitoid wasps. Following infection, flies mount an immune response termed cellular encapsulation in which fly immune cells form a multilayered capsule that covers and kills the wasp egg. Parasitoids have thus evolved virulence factors to suppress cellular encapsulation. To uncover the molecular mechanisms underlying the antiwasp response, we and others have begun identifying and functionally characterizing these virulence factors. Our recent work on the Drosophila parasitoid Ganaspis sp.1 has demonstrated that a virulence factor encoding a SERCA-type calcium pump plays an important role in Ganaspis sp.1 virulence. This venom SERCA antagonizes fly immune cell calcium signaling and thereby prevents the activation of the encapsulation response. In this way, the study of wasp virulence factors has revealed a novel aspect of fly immunity, namely a role for calcium signaling in fly immune cell activation, which is conserved with human immunity, again illustrating the marked conservation between fly and mammalian immune responses. Our findings demonstrate that the cellular encapsulation response can serve as a model of immune cell function and can also provide valuable insight into basic cell biological processes. PMID:24088661

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

    SciTech Connect

    Hong-geller, Elizabeth; Valdez, Yolanda E; Shou, Yulin; Yoshida, Thomas M; Marrone, Babetta L; Dunbar, John

    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.

  9. Analysis of mRNA expression for genes associated with regulatory T lymphocytes (CD25, FoxP3, CTLA4, and IDO) after experimental infection with bovine viral diarrhea virus of low or high virulence in beef calves.

    PubMed

    Palomares, Roberto A; Hurley, David J; Woolums, Amelia R; Parrish, Jacqueline E; Brock, Kenny V

    2014-12-01

    Immunosuppression caused by bovine viral diarrhea virus (BVDV) has been associated with lymphocyte depletion, leukopenia and impairment of leukocyte function; however, no work has been done on the relationship between BVDV and regulatory T lymphocytes (Tregs). The objective of this study was to compare the mRNA expression of genes associated with Tregs (CD25, FoxP3, CTLA4, and IDO), after experimental infection of beef calves with low (LV) or high (HV) virulence BVDV. Thirty BVDV-naïve calves were randomly assigned to three groups. Calves were intra-nasally inoculated with LV (n=10, strain SD-1) or HV (n=10, strain 1373) BVDV or BVDV-free cell culture medium (control, n=10). Quantitative RT-PCR was used to determine the expression of target genes in tracheo-bronchial lymph nodes and spleen on day 5 post-infection. The mRNA expression of CD25 was up-regulated in tracheo-bronchial lymph nodes of LV (P<0.05), but not in HV compared to the control group. The expression of FoxP3 and CTLA4 was not increased in tracheo-bronchial lymph nodes of either of the BVDV-inoculated groups. A dramatic up-regulation of IDO mRNA was observed in tracheo-bronchial lymph nodes of LV (P<0.05), but not HV compared to the control calves. In conclusion, experimental infection with BVDV did not provide evidence of Treg activation based on expression of FoxP3 and CTL4. Differential expression of CD25 and IDO mRNA on day 5 post-infection with HV or LV BVDV might reflect temporal differences in transcription occurring during the immune response elicited by these viral strains, or differences in viral infectivity of the host cells. PMID:25456194

  10. Recombinant Subgroup B Human Respiratory Syncytial Virus Expressing Enhanced Green Fluorescent Protein Efficiently Replicates in Primary Human Cells and Is Virulent in Cotton Rats

    PubMed Central

    Lemon, Ken; Nguyen, D. Tien; Ludlow, Martin; Rennick, Linda J.; Yüksel, Selma; van Amerongen, Geert; McQuaid, Stephen; Rima, Bert K.; de Swart, Rik L.

    2014-01-01

    ABSTRACT Human respiratory syncytial virus (HRSV) is the most important viral cause of severe respiratory tract disease in infants. Two subgroups (A and B) have been identified, which cocirculate during, or alternate between, yearly epidemics and cause indistinguishable disease. Existing in vitro and in vivo models of HRSV focus almost exclusively on subgroup A viruses. Here, a recombinant (r) subgroup B virus (rHRSVB05) was generated based on a consensus genome sequence obtained directly from an unpassaged clinical specimen from a hospitalized infant. An additional transcription unit containing the gene encoding enhanced green fluorescent protein (EGFP) was introduced between the phosphoprotein and matrix genes (position 5) of the genome to generate rHRSVB05EGFP(5). The recombinant viruses replicated efficiently in both HEp-2 cells and in well-differentiated normal human bronchial cells grown at air-liquid interface. Intranasal infection of cotton rats (Sigmodon hispidus) resulted in high numbers of EGFP+ cells in epithelia of the nasal septum and conchae. When administered in a relatively large inoculum volume, the virus also replicated efficiently in bronchiolar epithelial cells and spread extensively in both the upper and lower respiratory tracts. Virus replication was not observed in ciliated epithelial cells of the trachea. This is the first virulent rHRSV strain with the genetic composition of a currently circulating wild-type virus. In vivo tracking of infected cells by means of EGFP fluorescence in the absence of cytopathic changes increases the sensitivity of virus detection in HRSV pathogenesis studies. IMPORTANCE Virology as a discipline has depended on monitoring cytopathic effects following virus culture in vitro. However, wild-type viruses isolated from patients often do not cause significant changes to infected cells, necessitating blind passage. This can lead to genetic and phenotypic changes and the generation of high-titer, laboratory

  11. Mycobacterium avium subsp. Paratuberculosis and the expression of selected virulence and pathogenesis genes in response to 6°C, 65°c and ph 2.0

    PubMed Central

    Pribylova, Radka; Kralik, Petr; Donnelly, Neysan; Matiasovic, Jan; Pavlik, Ivo

    2011-01-01

    The aim of this work was to study the expression of selected Mycobacterium avium subsp. paratuberculosis (MAP) genes connected with MAP virulence, adhesion and stress response. The temperature of 6°C and 65°C were chosen with regard to the food industry, storage conditions (refrigerator) and low-temperature pasteurization. A pH of 2.0, using lactic acid, was selected to mimic the natural environment of the stomach. Expression of selected genes was studied using real time reverse transcription PCR on three different MAP isolates. MAP isolates were chosen according to the number of their preceding cultivations. While isolates 8672 and 8819 were previously cultivated only once, MAP isolate 12146 went through four passages. Different expression profiles were observed in each of the three MAP isolates. However, particular similar patterns were observed. SigE, sigF and ahpC were up-regulated, while sigL was down-regulated under temperature stress. Mmp gene was found to be down-regulated under acidic conditions. Low passage isolates (8672 and 8819) showed certain level of acid resistance. PMID:24031696

  12. Correlation between virulence gene expression and proton pump inhibitors and ambient pH in Clostridium difficile: results of an in vitro study.

    PubMed

    Stewart, David B; Hegarty, John P

    2013-10-01

    Proton pump inhibitors (PPIs) are associated with the development of Clostridium difficile infection in humans. Though it is assumed that PPIs mediate this effect through gastric acid suppression, there has been little investigation into whether PPIs, or ambient pH, might directly affect the expression of C. difficile toxin genes. In the present study, C. difficile ribotypes 001, 027 and 078 obtained from human subjects were grown under anaerobic conditions prepared at pHs of 5, 7.3 and 9. Matched trios were exposed to 100 µM and 200 µM of omeprazole along with PPI untreated controls. Custom designed reverse transcription quantitative PCR hydrolysis probes were used to assess C. difficile gene expression for toxins A (tcdA), B (tcdB) and binary toxin (cdtB), as well as their positive regulators (tcdR and cdtR), using rrsA, which encodes 16S rRNA, as a constitutively expressed reference gene. tcdC and codY, negative regulators of toxin expression, were also assessed. Basic pH resulted in greater expression of tcdA, and with PPI exposure a 120-fold higher expression was noted with ribotype 001. tcdB and cdtB expressions were much less responsive to pH or PPIs, though a clear response to acidic pH and PPI exposure was observed in ribotype 027. tcdC and codY expressions were largely unaffected, except with ribotype 027; low pH and PPIs resulted in their greater expression, though to a lesser degree than with toxin genes and their positive regulators. Non-neutral pH and PPI exposure appear to have an effect on C. difficile, one that has a net effect towards toxin gene expression. PMID:23800596

  13. Glucose Starvation Boosts Entamoeba histolytica Virulence

    PubMed Central

    Tovy, Ayala; Hertz, Rivka; Siman-Tov, Rama; Syan, Sylvie; Faust, Daniela; Guillen, Nancy; Ankri, Serge

    2011-01-01

    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. PMID:21829737

  14. Virulence evolution at the front line of spreading epidemics.

    PubMed

    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. PMID:26416254

  15. Expression of the Virulence Plasmid-Carried Apyrase Gene (apy) of Enteroinvasive Escherichia coli and Shigella flexneri Is under the Control of H-NS and the VirF and VirB Regulatory Cascade

    PubMed Central

    Berlutti, Francesca; Casalino, Mariassunta; Zagaglia, Carlo; Fradiani, Piera Assunta; Visca, Paolo; Nicoletti, Mauro

    1998-01-01

    The transcription of the virulence plasmid (pINV)-carried invasion genes of Shigella flexneri and enteroinvasive Escherichia coli (EIEC) is induced at 37°C and repressed at 30°C. In this work, we report that the O135: K−:H− EIEC strain HN280 and S. flexneri SFZM53, M90T, and 454, of serotypes 4, 5, and 2a, respectively, produce apyrase (ATP-diphosphohydrolase), the product of the apy gene. In addition, the S. flexneri strains, but not the EIEC strain, produce a nonspecific phosphatase encoded by the phoN-Sf gene. Both apy and phoN-Sf are pINV-carried loci whose contribution to the pathogenicity of enteroinvasive microorganisms has been hypothesized but not yet established. We found that, like that of virulence genes, the expression of both the apy and the phoN-Sf genes was temperature regulated. Strain HN280/32 (a pINV-integrated avirulent derivative of HN280 which has a severe reduction of virB transcription) expressed the apy gene in a temperature-regulated fashion but to a much lower extent than wild-type HN280, while the introduction of the Δhns deletion in HN280 and in HN280/32 induced the wild-type temperature-independent expression of apyrase. These results indicated that a reduction of virB transcription, which is known to occur in the pINV-integrated strain HN280/32, accounts for reduced apyrase expression and that the histone-like protein H-NS is involved in this regulatory network. Independent spontaneously generated mutants of HN280 and of SFZM53 which had lost the capacity to bind Congo red dye (Crb−) were isolated, and the molecular alterations of pINV were evaluated by PCR analysis. Alterations of pINV characterized by the absence of virF or virB and by the presence of the intact apy locus or intact apy and phoN-Sf loci were detected among Crb− mutants of HN280 and SFZM53, respectively. While all Crb− apy+ mutants of HN280 failed to produce apyrase, Crb− apy+ phoN-Sf+ mutants of SFZM53 lacked apyrase activity but produced a nonspecific

  16. Cryptococcus gattii Virulence Composite: Candidate Genes Revealed by Microarray Analysis of High and Less Virulent Vancouver Island Outbreak Strains

    PubMed Central

    Ngamskulrungroj, Popchai; Price, Jennifer; Sorrell, Tania; Perfect, John R.; Meyer, Wieland

    2011-01-01

    Human and animal cryptococcosis due to an unusual molecular type of Cryptococcus gattii (VGII) emerged recently on Vancouver Island, Canada. Unlike C. neoformans, C. gattii causes disease mainly in immunocompetent hosts, despite producing a similar suite of virulence determinants. To investigate a potential relationship between the regulation of expression of a virulence gene composite and virulence, we took advantage of two subtypes of VGII (a and b), one highly virulent (R265) and one less virulent (R272), that were identified from the Vancouver outbreak. By expression microarray analysis, 202 genes showed at least a 2-fold difference in expression with 108 being up- and 94 being down-regulated in strain R265 compared with strain R272. Specifically, expression levels of genes encoding putative virulence factors (e.g. LAC1, LAC2, CAS3 and MPK1) and genes encoding proteins involved in cell wall assembly, carbohydrate and lipid metabolism were increased in strain R265, whereas genes involved in the regulation of mitosis and ergosterol biosynthesis were suppressed. In vitro phenotypic studies and transcription analysis confirmed the microarray results. Gene disruption of LAC1 and MPK1 revealed defects in melanin synthesis and cell wall integrity, respectively, where CAS3 was not essential for capsule production. Moreover, MPK1 also controls melanin and capsule production and causes a severe attenuation of the virulence in a murine inhalational model. Overall, this study provides the basis for further genetic studies to characterize the differences in the virulence composite of strains with minor evolutionary divergences in gene expression in the primary pathogen C. gattii, that have led to a major invasive fungal infection outbreak. PMID:21249145

  17. Expression of ToxR, the transcriptional activator of the virulence factors in Vibrio cholerae, is modulated by the heat shock response.

    PubMed Central

    Parsot, C; Mekalanos, J J

    1990-01-01

    The toxR gene of Vibrio cholerae encodes a transmembrane, DNA-binding protein that positively controls transcription of the genes for cholera toxin, TCP pili, and other proteins important in cholera pathogenesis. Nucleotide sequence analysis of the toxR upstream region has revealed that the heat shock gene htpG, encoding the bacterial homologue of the eukaryotic Hsp90 protein, was located immediately upstream and was divergently transcribed from toxR. Using lacZ transcriptional fusions, we have shown that neither toxR nor htpG expression was regulated by ToxR. However, the growth temperature had a coordinate but reciprocal effect on the expression from both the toxR and htpG promoters in V. cholerae; the decrease of toxR expression between 22 degrees C and 37 degrees C was proportional to the increase of htpG expression observed within that temperature range. A similar pattern of expression of the htpG and toxR promoters was observed in the heterologous host Escherichia coli, where this regulation was controlled by the level of the E. coli rpoH (htpR) gene product, sigma-32. Consistent with the temperature-regulated expression of the V. cholerae htpG promoter in E. coli, a sequence similar to the consensus sequence of the E. coli heat shock promoters was detected upstream from the V. cholerae htpG gene. We propose a model in which the regulation of toxR expression by temperature is controlled by the level of sigma-32 (RpoH) RNA polymerase. Images PMID:2124707

  18. Transient virulence of emerging pathogens.

    PubMed

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

    2010-05-01

    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. PMID:19864267

  19. The Key Sigma Factor of Transition Phase, SigH, Controls Sporulation, Metabolism, and Virulence Factor Expression in Clostridium difficile▿†

    PubMed Central

    Saujet, Laure; Monot, Marc; Dupuy, Bruno; Soutourina, Olga; Martin-Verstraete, Isabelle

    2011-01-01

    Toxin synthesis in Clostridium difficile increases as cells enter into stationary phase. We first compared the expression profiles of strain 630E during exponential growth and at the onset of stationary phase and showed that genes involved in sporulation, cellular division, and motility, as well as carbon and amino acid metabolism, were differentially expressed under these conditions. We inactivated the sigH gene, which encodes an alternative sigma factor involved in the transition to post-exponential phase in Bacillus subtilis. Then, we compared the expression profiles of strain 630E and the sigH mutant after 10 h of growth. About 60% of the genes that were differentially expressed between exponential and stationary phases, including genes involved in motility, sporulation, and metabolism, were regulated by SigH, which thus appears to be a key regulator of the transition phase in C. difficile. SigH positively controls several genes required for sporulation. Accordingly, sigH inactivation results in an asporogeneous phenotype. The spo0A and CD2492 genes, encoding the master regulator of sporulation and one of its associated kinases, and the spoIIA operon were transcribed from a SigH-dependent promoter. The expression of tcdA and tcdB, encoding the toxins, and of tcdR, encoding the sigma factor required for toxin production, increased in a sigH mutant. Finally, SigH regulates the expression of genes encoding surface-associated proteins, such as the Cwp66 adhesin, the S-layer precursor, and the flagellum components. Among the 286 genes positively regulated by SigH, about 40 transcriptional units presenting a SigH consensus in their promoter regions are good candidates for direct SigH targets. PMID:21572003

  20. Novel Strategies to Combat Bacterial Virulence

    PubMed Central

    Lynch, S.V.; Wiener-Kronish, J.P.

    2010-01-01

    Purpose of review Incidences of antimicrobial resistant infections have increased dramatically over the past several decades and are associated with adverse patient outcomes. Alternative approaches to combat infection are critical, and have led to the development of more specific drugs targeted at particular bacterial virulence systems or essential regulatory pathways. The purpose of this review is to highlight the recent developments in anti-bacterial therapy and the novel approaches toward increasing our therapeutic armory against bacterial infection. Recent findings Although classic antibiotic development is not occurring rapidly, alternative therapeutics that target specific bacterial virulence systems are progressing from the discovery stage through the FDA approval process. Here we review novel antibodies that target specific virulence systems as well as a variety of newly discovered small molecules that block bacterial attachment, communication systems (quorum sensing) or important regulatory processes associated with virulence gene expression. Summary The success of novel therapeutics could significantly change clinical practice. Furthermore, the complications of collateral damage due to antibiotic administration e.g. suprainfections or decreased host immunity due to loss of synergistic bacterial communities, may be minimized using therapeutics that specifically target pathogenic behavior. PMID:18787455

  1. The effect of modified atmosphere packaging on the persistence and expression of virulence factors of Escherichia coli O157:H7 on shredded iceberg lettuce

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Fresh-cut leafy greens contaminated with Escherichia coli O157:H7 have been associated with multiple foodborne outbreaks. Modified atmospheric packaging (MAP) conditions, coupled with abusive storage temperatures of contaminated lettuce which may affect the persistence and expression of E. coli O1...

  2. Transcriptional Inhibitor of Virulence Factors in Enteropathogenic Escherichia coli

    PubMed Central

    Gauthier, Annick; Robertson, Marilyn L.; Lowden, Michael; Ibarra, J. Antonio; Puente, José Luis; Finlay, B. Brett

    2005-01-01

    The type III secretion system (TTSS) is a key virulence mechanism of many important gram-negative bacterial pathogens. The TTSS is conserved among different bacterial pathogens, and mutations and deletions to the system significantly decrease virulence, making the TTSS an important potential therapeutic target. We have developed a high-throughput assay to search for inhibitors of the TTSS. We screened a commercial library of 20,000 small molecules for their ability to inhibit type III secretion by enteropathogenic Escherichia coli (EPEC). After discarding compounds that had no effect on secretion, inhibited bacterial growth, and/or caused degradation of EPEC-secreted proteins, the search was focused on a class of compounds that, while not direct inhibitors of type III secretion, inhibit expression of TTSS-related genes and other genes involved in virulence. This class of compounds does not affect bacterial viability or motility, indicating that it is not significantly affecting the expression of essential genes and is specific to virulence-associated genes. Transcriptional fusion assays confirmed that virulence-associated promoters were more sensitive to inhibition by this class of compounds. Overall, we have identified a class of compounds that can be used as a tool to probe the mechanism(s) that regulates virulence gene expression in EPEC. PMID:16189086

  3. Post-transcriptional gene regulation in the biology and virulence of Candida albicans.

    PubMed

    Verma-Gaur, Jiyoti; Traven, Ana

    2016-06-01

    In the human fungal pathogen Candida albicans, remodelling of gene expression drives host adaptation and virulence. Recent studies revealed that in addition to transcription, post-transcriptional mRNA control plays important roles in virulence-related pathways. Hyphal morphogenesis, biofilm formation, stress responses, antifungal drug susceptibility and virulence in animal models require post-transcriptional regulators. This includes RNA binding proteins that control mRNA localization, decay and translation, as well as the cytoplasmic mRNA decay pathway. Comprehensive understanding of how modulation of gene expression networks drives C. albicans virulence will necessitate integration of our knowledge on transcriptional and post-transcriptional mRNA control. PMID:26999710

  4. Expression of the Cydia pomonella granulovirus matrix metalloprotease enhances Autographa californica multiple nucleopolyhedrovirus virulence and can partially substitute for viral cathepsin

    PubMed Central

    Ishimwe, Egide; Hodgson, Jeffrey J.; Passarelli, A. Lorena

    2015-01-01

    The Cydia pomonella granulovirus open reading frame 46 (CpGV-ORF46) contains predicted domains found in matrix metalloproteases (MMPs), a family of zinc-dependent endopeptidases that degrade extracellular matrix proteins. We showed that CpGV-MMP was active in vitro. Autographa californica multiple nucleopolyhedrovirus (AcMNPV) expressing CpGV-ORF46 replicated similarly to a control virus lacking CpGV-ORF46 in cultured cells. The effects of AcMNPV expressing CpGV-MMP on virus infection in cultured cells and Trichoplusia ni larvae in the presence or absence of other viral degradative enzymes, cathepsin and chitinase, were evaluated. In the absence of cathepsin and chitinase or cathepsin alone, larval time of death was significantly delayed. This delay was compensated by the expression of CpGV-MMP. CpGV-MMP was also able to promote larvae melanization in the absence of cathepsin and chitinase. In addition, CpGV-MMP partially substituted for cathepsin in larvae liquefaction when chitinase, which is usually retained in the endoplasmic reticulum, was engineered to be secreted. PMID:25795312

  5. Virulence factors and strategies of Leptopilina spp.: selective responses in Drosophila hosts.

    PubMed

    Lee, Mark J; Kalamarz, Marta E; Paddibhatla, Indira; Small, Chiyedza; Rajwani, Roma; Govind, Shubha

    2009-01-01

    To ensure survival, parasitic wasps of Drosophila have evolved strategies to optimize host development to their advantage. They also produce virulence factors that allow them to overcome or evade host defense. Wasp infection provokes cellular and humoral defense reactions, resulting in alteration in gene expression of the host. The activation of these reactions is controlled by conserved mechanisms shared by other invertebrate and vertebrate animals. Application of genomics and bioinformatics approaches is beginning to reveal comparative host gene expression changes after infection by different parasitic wasps. We analyze this comparison in the context of host physiology and immune cells, as well as the biology of the venom factors that wasps introduce into their hosts during oviposition. We compare virulence strategies of Leptopilina boulardi and L. heterotoma, in relation to genome-wide changes in gene expression in the fly hosts after infection. This analysis highlights fundamental differences in the changes that the host undergoes in its immune and general physiology in response to the two parasitic wasps. Such a comparative approach has the potential of revealing mechanisms governing the evolution of pathogenicity and how it impacts host range. PMID:19773069

  6. Virulence Factors and Strategies of Leptopilina spp.: Selective Responses in Drosophila Hosts

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Mark J.; Kalamarz, Marta E.; Paddibhatla, Indira; Small, Chiyedza; Rajwani, Roma; Govind, Shubha

    2010-01-01

    To ensure survival, parasitic wasps of Drosophila have evolved strategies to optimize host development to their advantage. They also produce virulence factors that allow them to overcome or evade host defense. Wasp infection provokes cellular and humoral defense reactions, resulting in alteration in gene expression of the host. The activation of these reactions is controlled by conserved mechanisms shared by other invertebrate and vertebrate animals. Application of genomics and bioinformatics approaches is beginning to reveal comparative host gene expression changes after infection by different parasitic wasps. We analyze this comparison in the context of host physiology and immune cells, as well as the biology of the venom factors that wasps introduce into their hosts during oviposition. We compare virulence strategies of Leptopilina boulardi and L. heterotoma, in relation to genome-wide changes in gene expression in the fly hosts after infection. This analysis highlights fundamental differences in the changes that the host undergoes in its immune and general physiology in response to the two parasitic wasps. Such a comparative approach has the potential of revealing mechanisms governing the evolution of pathogenicity and how it impacts host range. PMID:19773069

  7. Leishmania amazonensis Amastigotes Highly Express a Tryparedoxin Peroxidase Isoform That Increases Parasite Resistance to Macrophage Antimicrobial Defenses and Fosters Parasite Virulence

    PubMed Central

    Henard, Calvin A.; Carlsen, Eric D.; Hay, Christie; Kima, Peter E.; Soong, Lynn

    2014-01-01

    Professional phagocytes generate a myriad of antimicrobial molecules to kill invading microorganisms, of which nitrogen oxides are integral in controlling the obligate intracellular pathogen Leishmania. Although reactive nitrogen species produced by the inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS) can promote the clearance of intracellular parasites, some Leishmania species/stages are relatively resistant to iNOS-mediated antimicrobial activity. The underlying mechanism for this resistance remains largely uncharacterized. Here, we show that the amastigote form of L. amazonensis is hyper-resistant to the antimicrobial actions of cytokine-activated murine and human macrophages as compared to its promastigote counterpart. Amastigotes exhibit a marked ability to directly counter the cytotoxicity of peroxynitrite (ONOO−), a leishmanicidal oxidant that is generated during infection through the combined enzymatic activities of NADPH oxidase and iNOS. The enhanced antinitrosative defense of amastigotes correlates with the increased expression of a tryparedoxin peroxidase (TXNPx) isoform that is also upregulated in response to iNOS enzymatic activity within infected macrophages. Accordingly, ectopic over-expression of the TXNPx isoform by L. amazonensis promastigotes significantly enhances parasite resistance against ONOO− cytotoxicity. Moreover, TXNPx-overexpressing parasites exhibit greater intra-macrophage survival, and increased parasite growth and lesion development in a murine model of leishmaniasis. Our investigations indicate that TXNPx isoforms contribute to Leishmania's ability to adapt to and antagonize the hostile microenvironment of cytokine-activated macrophages, and provide a mechanistic explanation for persistent infection in experimental and human leishmaniasis. PMID:25033301

  8. Recombinant infectious bursal disease virus expressing Newcastle disease virus (NDV) neutralizing epitope confers partial protection against virulent NDV challenge in chickens.

    PubMed

    Li, Kai; Gao, Li; Gao, Honglei; Qi, Xiaole; Gao, Yulong; Qin, Liting; Wang, Yongqiang; Wang, Xiaomei

    2014-01-01

    In this study, the regions in the infectious bursal disease virus (IBDV) genome that are amenable to the introduction of a sequence encoding a virus-neutralizing epitope of Newcastle disease virus (NDV) hemagglutinin-neuraminidase (HN) protein were identified. By using the reverse genetics approach, insertions or substitutions of sequences encoding the NDV epitope were engineered in the exposed loops (PBC, PHI and [Formula: see text] ) of the VP2 capsid protein and the N terminus of the nonstructural VP5 protein as well as the pep7a and pep7b regions of the pVP2 precursor of a commonly used IBDV vaccine strain, Gt. Three recombinant IBDVs expressing the NDV epitopes were successfully rescued in the PBC, pep7b and VP5 regions and the expressed epitope was recognized by anti-HN antibodies. Genetic analysis showed that the IBDV recombinants carrying the NDV epitopes were stable in cell cultures and in chickens. Animal studies demonstrated that the IBDV recombinants were innocuous in chickens. Vaccination with the recombinant viruses generated antibody responses against both IBDV and NDV, and provided 70-80% protection against IBDV and 50-60% protection against NDV. These results indicate that the recombinant IBDV has the potential to serve as a novel vaccine vector for other pathogens. In future studies, it is worth considering research to improve IBDV vector vaccine to get complete protection and safety of animals and humans. PMID:24200519

  9. Subinhibitory Concentrations of Antimicrobial Agents Reduce the Uptake of Legionella pneumophila into Acanthamoeba castellanii and U937 Cells by Altering the Expression of Virulence-Associated Antigens

    PubMed Central

    Lück, P. Christian; Schmitt, Jürgen W.; Hengerer, Arne; Helbig, Jürgen H.

    1998-01-01

    We determined the MICs of ampicillin, ciprofloxacin, erythromycin, imipenem, and rifampin for two clinical isolates of Legionella pneumophila serogroup 1 by 3-(4,5-dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-2,5-diphenyltetrazolium bromide (MTT) reduction assay and by quantitative culture. To test the influence of subinhibitory concentrations (sub-MICs) of antimicrobial agents on Legionella uptake into Acanthamoeba castellanii and U937 macrophage-like cells, both strains were pretreated with 0.25 MICs of the antibiotics for 24 h. In comparison to that for the untreated control, subinhibitory concentrations of antibiotics significantly reduced Legionella uptake into the host cells. Measurement of the binding of monoclonal antibodies against several Legionella antigens by enzyme-linked immunoassays indicated that sub-MIC antibiotic treatment reduced the expression of the macrophage infectivity potentiator protein (Mip), the Hsp 60 protein, the outer membrane protein (OmpM), an as-yet-uncharacterized protein of 55 kDa, and a few lipopolysaccharide (LPS) epitopes. In contrast, the expression of some LPS epitopes recognized by monoclonal antibodies 8/5 and 30/4 as well as a 45-kDa protein, a 58-kDa protein, and the major outer membrane protein (OmpS) remained unaffected. PMID:9797218

  10. Coevolution of Morphology and Virulence in Candida Species ▿

    PubMed Central

    Thompson, Delma S.; Carlisle, Patricia L.; Kadosh, David

    2011-01-01

    Many of the major human fungal pathogens are known to undergo morphological changes, which in certain cases are associated with virulence. Although there has been an intense research focus on morphology in fungi, very little is known about how morphology evolved in conjunction with a variety of other virulence properties. However, several recent important discoveries, primarily in Candida species, are beginning to shed light on this important area and answer many longstanding questions. In this minireview, we first provide a description of the major fungal morphologies, as well as the roles of morphology and morphology-associated gene expression in virulence. Next, focusing largely on Candida species, we examine the evolutionary relationships among specific morphological forms. Finally, drawing on recent findings, we begin to address the question of how specific morphological changes came to be associated with virulence of Candida species during evolution. PMID:21764907

  11. LaeA, a Regulator of Morphogenetic Fungal Virulence Factors†

    PubMed Central

    Bok, Jin Woo; Balajee, S. Arunmozhi; Marr, Kieren A.; Andes, David; Nielsen, Kristian Fog; Frisvad, Jens C.; Keller, Nancy P.

    2005-01-01

    Opportunistic animal and plant pathogens, well represented by the genus Aspergillus, have evolved unique mechanisms to adapt to and avoid host defenses. Aspergillus fumigatus, an increasingly serious pathogen owing to expanding numbers of immunocompromised patients, causes the majority of human infections; however, an inability to identify bona fide virulence factors has impeded therapeutic advances. We show that an A. fumigatus mutation in a developmentally expressed transcriptional regulator (ΔlaeA) coordinating morphological and chemical differentiation reduces virulence in a murine model; impaired virulence is associated with decreased levels of pulmonary gliotoxin and multiple changes in conidial and hyphal susceptibility to host phagocytes ex vivo. LaeA, a conserved protein in filamentous fungi, is a developmental regulator of virulence genes and, possibly, the first antimicrobial target specific to filamentous fungi that are pathogenic to plants and animals. PMID:16151250

  12. Thermal control of virulence factors in bacteria: A hot topic

    PubMed Central

    Lam, Oliver; Wheeler, Jun; Tang, Christoph M

    2014-01-01

    Pathogenic bacteria sense environmental cues, including the local temperature, to control the production of key virulence factors. Thermal regulation can be achieved at the level of DNA, RNA or protein and although many virulence factors are subject to thermal regulation, the exact mechanisms of control are yet to be elucidated in many instances. Understanding how virulence factors are regulated by temperature presents a significant challenge, as gene expression and protein production are often influenced by complex regulatory networks involving multiple transcription factors in bacteria. Here we highlight some recent insights into thermal regulation of virulence in pathogenic bacteria. We focus on bacteria which cause disease in mammalian hosts, which are at a significantly higher temperature than the outside environment. We outline the mechanisms of thermal regulation and how understanding this fundamental aspect of the biology of bacteria has implications for pathogenesis and human health. PMID:25494856

  13. The two-component response regulator LiaR regulates cell wall stress responses, pili expression and virulence in group B Streptococcus

    PubMed Central

    Klinzing, David C.; Ishmael, Nadeeza; Hotopp, Julie C. Dunning; Tettelin, Hervé; Shields, Kelly R.; Madoff, Lawrence C.

    2013-01-01

    Group B Streptococcus (GBS) remains the leading cause of early onset sepsis among term infants. Evasion of innate immune defences is critical to neonatal GBS disease pathogenesis. Effectors of innate immunity, as well as numerous antibiotics, frequently target the peptidoglycan layer of the Gram-positive bacterial cell wall. The intramembrane-sensing histidine kinase (IM-HK) class of two-component regulatory systems has been identified as important to the Gram-positive response to cell wall stress. We have characterized the GBS homologue of LiaR, the response regulator component of the Lia system, to determine its role in GBS pathogenesis. LiaR is expressed as part of a three-gene operon (liaFSR) with a promoter located upstream of liaF. A LiaR deletion mutant is more susceptible to cell wall-active antibiotics (vancomycin and bacitracin) as well as antimicrobial peptides (polymixin B, colistin, and nisin) compared to isogenic wild-type GBS. LiaR mutant GBS are significantly attenuated in mouse models of both GBS sepsis and pneumonia. Transcriptional profiling with DNA microarray and Northern blot demonstrated that LiaR regulates expression of genes involved in microbial defence against host antimicrobial systems including genes functioning in cell wall synthesis, pili formation and cell membrane modification. We conclude that the LiaFSR system, the first member of the IM-HK regulatory systems to be studied in GBS, is involved in sensing perturbations in the integrity of the cell wall and activates a transcriptional response that is important to the pathogenesis of GBS infection. PMID:23704792

  14. Pathogenicity and virulence: another view.

    PubMed Central

    Isenberg, H D

    1988-01-01

    The concepts of pathogenicity and virulence have governed our perception of microbial harmfulness since the time of Pasteur and Koch. These concepts resulted in the recognition and identification of numerous etiological agents and provided natural and synthetic agents effective in therapy and prevention of diseases. However, Koch's postulates--the premier product of this view--place the onus of harmfulness solely on the microbial world. Our recent experiences with polymicrobic and nosocomial infections, legionellosis, and acquired immunodeficiency syndrome point to the host as the major determinant of disease. The principles of parasitism, enunciated by Theobold Smith, approximate more accurately the disturbances of the host-parasite equilibrium we designate as infection. Many complex attributes of microbial anatomy and physiology have been obscured by our dependency on the pure-culture technique. For example, bacterial attachment organelles and the production of exopolysaccharides enable microorganisms to interact with mammalian glycocalyces and specific receptors. In addition, selection, through the use of therapeutic agents, aids in the progression of environmental organisms to members of the intimate human biosphere, with the potential to complicate the recovery of patients. These factors emphasize further the pivotal significance of host reactions in infections. Parasitism, in its negative aspects, explains the emergence of "new" infections that involve harm to more than host organs and cells: we may encounter subtler infections that reveal parasitic and host cell nucleic acid interactions in a form of genomic parasitism. PMID:3060244

  15. Riboregulators: Fine-Tuning Virulence in Shigella

    PubMed Central

    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. PMID:26858941

  16. Attenuating Staphylococcus aureus Virulence Gene Regulation: A Medicinal Chemistry Perspective

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Virulence gene expression in Staphylococcus aureus is tightly regulated by intricate networks of transcriptional regulators and two-component signal transduction systems. There is now an emerging body of evidence to suggest that the blockade of S. aureus virulence gene expression significantly attenuates infection in experimental models. In this Perspective, we will provide insights into medicinal chemistry strategies for the development of chemical reagents that have the capacity to inhibit staphylococcal virulence expression. These reagents can be broadly grouped into four categories: (1) competitive inhibitors of the accessory gene regulator (agr) quorum sensing system, (2) inhibitors of AgrA–DNA interactions, (3) RNAIII transcription inhibitors, and (4) inhibitors of the SarA family of transcriptional regulators. We discuss the potential of specific examples of antivirulence agents for the management and treatment of staphylococcal infections. PMID:23294220

  17. Characterization of two virulence proteins secreted by rabbit enteropathogenic Escherichia coli, EspA and EspB, whose maximal expression is sensitive to host body temperature.

    PubMed Central

    Abe, A; Kenny, B; Stein, M; Finlay, B B

    1997-01-01

    Enteropathogenic Escherichia coli (EPEC) and rabbit EPEC (RDEC-1) cause unique histopathological features on intestinal mucosa, including attaching/effacing (A/E) lesions. Due to the human specificity of EPEC, RDEC-1 has been used as an animal model to study EPEC pathogenesis. At least two of the previously identified EPEC-secreted proteins, EspA and EspB, are required for triggering host epithelial signal transduction pathways, intimate adherence, and A/E lesions. However, the functions of these secreted proteins and their roles in pathogenesis have not been characterized. To investigate the function of EspA and EspB in RDEC-1, the espA and espB genes were cloned and their sequences were compared to that of EPEC O127. The EspA proteins showed high similarity (88.5% identity), while EspB was heterogeneous in internal regions (69.8% identity). However, RDEC-1 EspB was identical to that of enterohemorrhagic E. coli serotype O26. Mutations in RDEC-1 espA and espB revealed that the corresponding RDEC-1 gene products are essential for triggering of host signal transduction pathways and invasion into HeLa cells. Complementation with plasmids containing EPEC espA or/and espB genes into RDEC-1 mutant strains demonstrated that they were functionally interchangeable, although the EPEC proteins mediated higher levels of invasion. Furthermore, maximal expression of RDEC-1 and EPEC-secreted proteins occurred at their respective host body temperatures, which may contribute to the lack of EPEC infectivity in rabbits. PMID:9284118

  18. H2O2, Which Causes Macrophage-Related Stress, Triggers Induction of Expression of Virulence-Associated Plasmid Determinants in Rhodococcus equi

    PubMed Central

    Benoit, Stephanie; Benachour, Abdellah; Taouji, Said; Auffray, Yanick; Hartke, Axel

    2002-01-01

    The response of the intracellular pathogen Rhodococcus equi to H2O2 treatment, a situation potentially encountered after the oxidative burst of alveolar macrophages, was analyzed. Compared to other bacteria, including Deinococcus radiodurans, R. equi showed exceptionally high resistance to this stress. A proteomic approach showed that four polypeptides present in the wild-type strain (85F) are missing in the plasmid-cured strain 85F(P-), and by using a DNA macroarray, we identified two plasmid-encoded vap genes, vapA and vapG, whose expression was highly induced by H2O2 treatment. Whereas the transcript size of vapA was compatible with a monocistronic mRNA, the transcript of vapG was considerably longer. Rapid amplification of cDNA ends PCRs showed that the transcriptional start sites of the two operons were 69 and 269 nucleotides (nt) upstream of the start codon, respectively. Analysis of these leader sequences revealed the presence of a small open reading frame named podG, which encodes a sequence of 55 amino acids preceded by a putative ribosome binding site sequence in the vapG transcript. Taking this result into account, the untranslated leader of the podG/vapG operon is 87 nt. Alignment of this sequence with the leader sequences of vapA and vapD, genes previously shown to be induced by acid, revealed significant homologies. Since our results showed that vapA, vapD, and vapG are genes highly induced by macrophage-related stresses, their gene products may, within the Vap protein family, play a dominant role inside these phagocytic cells and may be the most promising candidates for vaccination strategies. PMID:12065520

  19. Brucella, nitrogen and virulence.

    PubMed

    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. PMID:25471320

  20. Virulence of enterococci.

    PubMed Central

    Jett, B D; Huycke, M M; Gilmore, M S

    1994-01-01

    Enterococci are commensal organisms well suited to survival in intestinal and vaginal tracts and the oral cavity. However, as for most bacteria described as causing human disease, enterococci also possess properties that can be ascribed roles in pathogenesis. The natural ability of enterococci to readily acquire, accumulate, and share extrachromosomal elements encoding virulence traits or antibiotic resistance genes lends advantages to their survival under unusual environmental stresses and in part explains their increasing importance as nosocomial pathogens. This review discusses the current understanding of enterococcal virulence relating to (i) adherence to host tissues, (ii) invasion and abscess formation, (iii) factors potentially relevant to modulation of host inflammatory responses, and (iv) potentially toxic secreted products. Aggregation substance, surface carbohydrates, or fibronectin-binding moieties may facilitate adherence to host tissues. Enterococcus faecalis appears to have the capacity to translocate across intact intestinal mucosa in models of antibiotic-induced superinfection. Extracellular toxins such as cytolysin can induce tissue damage as shown in an endophthalmitis model, increase mortality in combination with aggregation substance in an endocarditis model, and cause systemic toxicity in a murine peritonitis model. Finally, lipoteichoic acid, superoxide production, or pheromones and corresponding peptide inhibitors each may modulate local inflammatory reactions. Images PMID:7834601

  1. Analysis of Two in Planta Expressed LysM Effector Homologs from the Fungus Mycosphaerella graminicola Reveals Novel Functional Properties and Varying Contributions to Virulence on Wheat1[W][OA

    PubMed Central

    Marshall, Rosalind; Kombrink, Anja; Motteram, Juliet; Loza-Reyes, Elisa; Lucas, John; Hammond-Kosack, Kim E.; Thomma, Bart P.H.J.; Rudd, Jason J.

    2011-01-01

    Secreted effector proteins enable plant pathogenic fungi to manipulate host defenses for successful infection. Mycosphaerella graminicola causes Septoria tritici blotch disease of wheat (Triticum aestivum) leaves. Leaf infection involves a long (approximately 7 d) period of symptomless intercellular colonization prior to the appearance of necrotic disease lesions. Therefore, M. graminicola is considered as a hemibiotrophic (or necrotrophic) pathogen. Here, we describe the molecular and functional characterization of M. graminicola homologs of Ecp6 (for extracellular protein 6), the Lysin (LysM) domain-containing effector from the biotrophic tomato (Solanum lycopersicum) leaf mold fungus Cladosporium fulvum, which interferes with chitin-triggered immunity in plants. Three LysM effector homologs are present in the M. graminicola genome, referred to as Mg3LysM, Mg1LysM, and MgxLysM. Mg3LysM and Mg1LysM genes were strongly transcriptionally up-regulated specifically during symptomless leaf infection. Both proteins bind chitin; however, only Mg3LysM blocked the elicitation of chitin-induced plant defenses. In contrast to C. fulvum Ecp6, both Mg1LysM and Mg3LysM also protected fungal hyphae against plant-derived hydrolytic enzymes, and both genes show significantly more nucleotide polymorphism giving rise to nonsynonymous amino acid changes. While Mg1LysM deletion mutant strains of M. graminicola were fully pathogenic toward wheat leaves, Mg3LysM mutant strains were severely impaired in leaf colonization, did not trigger lesion formation, and were unable to undergo asexual sporulation. This virulence defect correlated with more rapid and pronounced expression of wheat defense genes during the symptomless phase of leaf colonization. These data highlight different functions for MgLysM effector homologs during plant infection, including novel activities that distinguish these proteins from C. fulvum Ecp6. PMID:21467214

  2. Metabolic Control of Virulence Genes in Brucella abortus: HutC Coordinates virB Expression and the Histidine Utilization Pathway by Direct Binding to Both Promoters ▿ †

    PubMed Central

    Sieira, Rodrigo; Arocena, Gastón M.; Bukata, Lucas; Comerci, Diego J.; Ugalde, Rodolfo A.

    2010-01-01

    Type IV secretion systems (T4SS) are multicomponent machineries involved in the translocation of effector molecules across the bacterial cell envelope. The virB operon of Brucella abortus codes for a T4SS that is essential for virulence and intracellular multiplication of the bacterium in the host. Previous studies showed that the virB operon of B. abortus is tightly regulated within the host cells. In order to identify factors implicated in the control of virB expression, we searched for proteins of Brucella that directly bind to the virB promoter (PvirB). Using different procedures, we isolated a 27-kDa protein that binds specifically to PvirB. This protein was identified as HutC, the transcriptional repressor of the histidine utilization (hut) genes. Analyses of virB and hut promoter activity revealed that HutC exerts two different roles: it acts as a coactivator of transcription of the virB operon, whereas it represses the hut genes. Such activities were observed both intracellularly and in bacteria incubated under conditions that resemble the intracellular environment. Electrophoresis mobility shift assays (EMSA) and DNase I footprinting experiments revealed the structure, affinity, and localization of the HutC-binding sites and supported the regulatory role of HutC in both hut and virB promoters. Taken together, these results indicate that Brucella coopted the function of HutC to coordinate the Hut pathway with transcriptional regulation of the virB genes, probably as a way to sense its own metabolic state and develop adaptive responses to overcome intracellular host defenses. PMID:19854911

  3. The Staphylococcus aureus RNome and Its Commitment to Virulence

    PubMed Central

    Felden, Brice; Vandenesch, François; Bouloc, Philippe; Romby, Pascale

    2011-01-01

    Staphylococcus aureus is a major human pathogen causing a wide spectrum of nosocomial and community-associated infections with high morbidity and mortality. S. aureus generates a large number of virulence factors whose timing and expression levels are precisely tuned by regulatory proteins and RNAs. The aptitude of bacteria to use RNAs to rapidly modify gene expression, including virulence factors in response to stress or environmental changes, and to survive in a host is an evolving concept. Here, we focus on the recently inventoried S. aureus regulatory RNAs, with emphasis on those with identified functions, two of which are directly involved in pathogenicity. PMID:21423670

  4. Peritoneal culture alters Streptococcus pneumoniae protein profiles and virulence properties

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Orihuela, C. J.; Janssen, R.; Robb, C. W.; Watson, D. A.; Niesel, D. W.

    2000-01-01

    We have examined the properties of Streptococcus pneumoniae cultured in the murine peritoneal cavity and compared its virulence-associated characteristics to those of cultures grown in vitro. Analysis of mRNA levels for specific virulence factors demonstrated a 2.8-fold increase in ply expression and a 2.2-fold increase in capA3 expression during murine peritoneal culture (MPC). Two-dimensional gels and immunoblots using convalescent-phase patient sera and murine sera revealed distinct differences in protein production in vivo (MPC). MPC-grown pneumococci adhered to A549 epithelial cell lines at levels 10-fold greater than those cultured in vitro.

  5. Sigma E Regulators Control Hemolytic Activity and Virulence in a Shrimp Pathogenic Vibrio harveyi

    PubMed Central

    Rattanama, Pimonsri; Thompson, Janelle R.; Kongkerd, Natthawan; Srinitiwarawong, Kanchana; Vuddhakul, Varaporn; Mekalanos, John J.

    2012-01-01

    Members of the genus Vibrio are important marine and aquaculture pathogens. Hemolytic activity has been identified as a virulence factor in many pathogenic vibrios including V. cholerae, V. parahaemolyticus, V. alginolyticus, V. harveyi and V. vulnificus. We have used transposon mutagenesis to identify genes involved in the hemolytic activity of shrimp-pathogenic V. harveyi strain PSU3316. Out of 1,764 mutants screened, five mutants showed reduced hemolytic activity on sheep blood agar and exhibited virulence attenuation in shrimp (Litopenaeus vannamei). Mutants were identified by comparing transposon junction sequences to a draft of assembly of the PSU3316 genome. Surprisingly none of the disrupted open reading frames or gene neighborhoods contained genes annotated as hemolysins. The gene encoding RseB, a negative regulator of the sigma factor (σE), was interrupted in 2 out of 5 transposon mutants, in addition, the transcription factor CytR, a threonine synthetase, and an efflux-associated cytoplasmic protein were also identified. Knockout mutations introduced into the rpoE operon at the rseB gene exhibited low hemolytic activity in sheep blood agar, and were 3-to 7-fold attenuated for colonization in shrimp. Comparison of whole cell extracted proteins in the rseB mutant (PSU4030) to the wild-type by 2-D gel electrophoresis revealed 6 differentially expressed proteins, including two down-regulated porins (OmpC-like and OmpN) and an upregulated protease (DegQ) which have been associated with σE in other organisms. Our study is the first report linking hemolytic activity to the σE regulators in pathogenic Vibrio species and suggests expression of this virulence-linked phenotype is governed by multiple regulatory pathways within the V. harveyi. PMID:22384269

  6. Testis hormone-sensitive lipase expression in spermatids is governed by a short promoter in transgenic mice.

    PubMed

    Blaise, R; Guillaudeux, T; Tavernier, G; Daegelen, D; Evrard, B; Mairal, A; Holm, C; Jégou, B; Langin, D

    2001-02-16

    A testicular form of hormone-sensitive lipase (HSL(tes)), a triacylglycerol lipase, and cholesterol esterase, is expressed in male germ cells. Northern blot analysis showed HSL(tes) mRNA expression in early spermatids. Immunolocalization of the protein in human and rodent seminiferous tubules indicated that the highest level of expression occurred in elongated spermatids. We have previously shown that 0.5 kilobase pairs of the human HSL(tes) promoter directs testis-specific expression of a chloramphenicol acetyltransferase reporter gene in transgenic mice and determined regions binding nuclear proteins expressed in testis but not in liver (Blaise, R., Grober, J., Rouet, P., Tavernier, G., Daegelen, D., and Langin, D. (1999) J. Biol. Chem. 274, 9327-9334). Mutation of a SRY/Sox-binding site in one of the regions did not impair in vivo testis-specific expression of the reporter gene. Further transgenic analyses established that 95 base pairs upstream of the transcription start site were sufficient for correct testis expression. In gel retardation assays using early spermatid nuclear extracts, a germ cell-specific DNA-protein interaction was mapped between -46 and -29 base pairs. The DNA binding nuclear protein showed properties of zinc finger transcription factors. Mutation of the region abolished reporter gene activity in transgenic mice, showing that it is necessary for testis expression of HSL(tes). PMID:11076952

  7. Effects of zinc transporters on Cryptococcus gattii virulence

    PubMed Central

    Schneider, Rafael de Oliveira; Diehl, Camila; dos Santos, Francine Melise; Piffer, Alícia Corbellini; Garcia, Ane Wichine Acosta; Kulmann, Marcos Iuri Roos; Schrank, Augusto; Kmetzsch, Lívia; Vainstein, Marilene Henning; Staats, Charley C.

    2015-01-01

    Zinc is an essential nutrient for all living organisms because it is a co-factor of several important proteins. Furthermore, zinc may play an essential role in the infectiousness of microorganisms. Previously, we determined that functional zinc metabolism is associated with Cryptococcus gattii virulence. Here, we characterized the ZIP zinc transporters in this human pathogen. Transcriptional profiling revealed that zinc levels regulated the expression of the ZIP1, ZIP2 and ZIP3 genes, although only the C. gattii zinc transporter Zip1 was required for yeast growth under zinc-limiting conditions. To associate zinc uptake defects with virulence, the most studied cryptococcal virulence factors (i.e., capsule, melanin and growth at 37 °C) were assessed in ZIP mutant strains; however, no differences were detected in these classical virulence-associated traits among the mutant and WT strains. Interestingly, higher levels of reactive oxygen species were detected in the zip1Δ and in the zip1Δ zip2Δ double mutants. In line with these phenotypic alterations, the zip1Δ zip2Δ double mutant displayed attenuated virulence in a murine model of cryptococcosis. Together, these results indicate that adequate zinc uptake is necessary for cryptococcal fitness and virulence. PMID:25951314

  8. INHIBITION OF VIRULENCE FACTORS OF PSEUDOMONAS AERUGINOSA BY DICLOFENAC SODIUM.

    PubMed

    Abbas, Hisham A

    2015-01-01

    Resistance of Pseudomonas aeruginosa to antibiotics is a major problem. Targeting virulence factors is an alternative option to avoid the emergence of resistance to antibiotics. The effect of sub-inhibitory concentration of diclofenac sodium on the production of virulence factors of P. aeruginosa was investigated. The virulence factors included protease, haemolysin, pyocyanin and pyoverdin, in addition to pathogenic behaviors such as swimming and twitching motilities and biofilm formation. Diclofenac sodium showed significant inhibition of virulence factors as compared to the control. Diclofenac sodium decreased twitching and swimming motilities by 29.27% and 45.36%, respectively. The percentage of inhibition of pyocyanin by diclofenac sodium was 42.32%. On the other hand, pyoverdin was inhibited to a lesser extent (36.72%). Diclofenac sodium reduced protease by 52.58% and biofilm formation by 58.37%. Moreover, haemolytic activity in the presence of diclofenac sodium was 15.64% as compared to the control (100% haemolytic activity). The inhibitory activities may be due to inhibition of quorum sensing that regulates the expression of virulence factors. This study suggests the potential for the use of diclofenac sodium as an anti-virulence agent in the treatment of Pseudomonas aeruginosa infections. PMID:27328521

  9. Serum resistance associated with virulence in Yersinia enterocolitica.

    PubMed Central

    Pai, C H; DeStephano, L

    1982-01-01

    Yersinia enterocolitica strains that exhibited a calcium requirement for growth and autoagglutination at 37 degrees C were invariably virulent in rabbits, causing diarrhea and a high degree of lethality, and were capable of colonizing the intestinal lumen and establishing foci of infection on the Peyer's patches of mice. Strains that had lost the properties of calcium dependency and autoagglutinability were totally avirulent in rabbits and were quickly eliminated from the intestinal lumen and tissues of mice. Virulent and avirulent strains were shown to be equally invasive to HeLa cells. However, the virulent strains were resistant to the bactericidal action of normal serum, and this serum resistance was lost with the loss of virulence. Furthermore, the serum resistance of virulent strains was expressed, as were other properties, when strains were grown at 37 degrees C, but not at 27 degrees C. These results suggest that a virulence factor associated with serum resistance plays an essential role in the pathogenicity of Y. enterocolitica. PMID:7056577

  10. Growth Model of a Plasmid-bearing Virulent Strain of Yersinia pseudotuberculosis in Raw Ground Beef

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Introduction: Yersinia pseudotuberculosis (YPST) has been implicated in foodborne illnesses associated with various foods, including raw beef. A 70-kb virulence plasmid (pYV) is involved in expression of virulence phenotypes. However, increased growth temperatures (30 degree C) facilitate the loss...

  11. Tracking bacterial virulence: global modulators as indicators.

    PubMed

    Prieto, Alejandro; Urcola, Imanol; Blanco, Jorge; Dahbi, Ghizlane; Muniesa, Maite; Quirós, Pablo; Falgenhauer, Linda; Chakraborty, Trinad; Hüttener, Mário; Juárez, Antonio

    2016-01-01

    The genomes of Gram-negative bacteria encode paralogues and/or orthologues of global modulators. The nucleoid-associated H-NS and Hha proteins are an example: several enterobacteria such as Escherichia coli or Salmonella harbor H-NS, Hha and their corresponding paralogues, StpA and YdgT proteins, respectively. Remarkably, the genome of the pathogenic enteroaggregative E. coli strain 042 encodes, in addition to the hha and ydgT genes, two additional hha paralogues, hha2 and hha3. We show in this report that there exists a strong correlation between the presence of these paralogues and the virulence phenotype of several E. coli strains. hha2 and hha3 predominate in some groups of intestinal pathogenic E. coli strains (enteroaggregative and shiga toxin-producing isolates), as well as in the widely distributed extraintestinal ST131 isolates. Because of the relationship between the presence of hha2/hha3 and some virulence factors, we have been able to provide evidence for Hha2/Hha3 modulating the expression of the antigen 43 pathogenic determinants. We show that tracking global modulators or their paralogues/orthologues can be a new strategy to identify bacterial pathogenic clones and propose PCR amplification of hha2 and hha3 as a virulence indicator in environmental and clinical E. coli isolates. PMID:27169404

  12. Tracking bacterial virulence: global modulators as indicators

    PubMed Central

    Prieto, Alejandro; Urcola, Imanol; Blanco, Jorge; Dahbi, Ghizlane; Muniesa, Maite; Quirós, Pablo; Falgenhauer, Linda; Chakraborty, Trinad; Hüttener, Mário; Juárez, Antonio

    2016-01-01

    The genomes of Gram-negative bacteria encode paralogues and/or orthologues of global modulators. The nucleoid-associated H-NS and Hha proteins are an example: several enterobacteria such as Escherichia coli or Salmonella harbor H-NS, Hha and their corresponding paralogues, StpA and YdgT proteins, respectively. Remarkably, the genome of the pathogenic enteroaggregative E. coli strain 042 encodes, in addition to the hha and ydgT genes, two additional hha paralogues, hha2 and hha3. We show in this report that there exists a strong correlation between the presence of these paralogues and the virulence phenotype of several E. coli strains. hha2 and hha3 predominate in some groups of intestinal pathogenic E. coli strains (enteroaggregative and shiga toxin-producing isolates), as well as in the widely distributed extraintestinal ST131 isolates. Because of the relationship between the presence of hha2/hha3 and some virulence factors, we have been able to provide evidence for Hha2/Hha3 modulating the expression of the antigen 43 pathogenic determinants. We show that tracking global modulators or their paralogues/orthologues can be a new strategy to identify bacterial pathogenic clones and propose PCR amplification of hha2 and hha3 as a virulence indicator in environmental and clinical E. coli isolates. PMID:27169404

  13. PrfA regulation offsets the cost of L isteria virulence outside the host

    PubMed Central

    Vasanthakrishnan, Radhakrishnan B.; de las Heras, Aitor; Scortti, Mariela; Deshayes, Caroline; Colegrave, Nick

    2015-01-01

    Summary Virulence traits are essential for pathogen fitness, but whether they affect microbial performance in the environment, where they are not needed, remains experimentally unconfirmed. We investigated this question with the facultative pathogen L isteria monocytogenes and its PrfA virulence regulon. PrfA‐regulated genes are activated intracellularly (PrfA ‘ON’) but shut down outside the host (PrfA ‘OFF’). Using a mutant PrfA regulator locked ON (PrfA*) and thus causing PrfA‐controlled genes to be constitutively activated, we show that virulence gene expression significantly impairs the listerial growth rate (μ) and maximum growth (A) in rich medium. Deletion analysis of the PrfA regulon and complementation of a L. monocytogenes mutant lacking all PrfA‐regulated genes with PrfA* indicated that the growth reduction was specifically due to the unneeded virulence determinants and not to pleiotropic regulatory effects of PrfA ON. No PrfA*‐associated fitness disadvantage was observed in infected eukaryotic cells, where PrfA‐regulated virulence gene expression is critical for survival. Microcosm experiments demonstrated that the constitutively virulent state strongly impaired L . monocytogenes performance in soil, the natural habitat of these bacteria. Our findings provide empirical proof that virulence carries a significant cost to the pathogen. They also experimentally substantiate the assumed, although not proven, key role of virulence gene regulation systems in suppressing the cost of bacterial virulence outside the host. PMID:26178789

  14. Virulence Factors of Erwinia amylovora: A Review.

    PubMed

    Piqué, Núria; Miñana-Galbis, David; Merino, Susana; Tomás, Juan M

    2015-01-01

    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. PMID:26057748

  15. Virulence Factors of Erwinia amylovora: A Review

    PubMed Central

    Piqué, Núria; Miñana-Galbis, David; Merino, Susana; Tomás, Juan M.

    2015-01-01

    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. PMID:26057748

  16. The CtsR regulator controls the expression of clpC, clpE and clpP and is required for the virulence of Enterococcus faecalis in an invertebrate model.

    PubMed

    Cassenego, Ana Paula Vaz; de Oliveira, Naira Elane Moreira; Laport, Marinella Silva; Abranches, Jaqueline; Lemos, José A; Giambiagi-deMarval, Marcia

    2016-09-01

    The intrinsic ruggedness of Enterococcus faecalis is responsible for its widespread distribution in nature and is often viewed as an important virulence determinant. Previously, we showed that the ClpB ATPase is negatively regulated by CtsR and is required for thermotolerance and virulence in a Galleria mellonella invertebrate model. Here, we used in silico, Northern blot and quantitative real-time PCR analyses to identify additional members of the CtsR regulon, namely the clpP peptidase and the clpC and clpE ATPases. When compared to the parent strain, virulence of the ΔctsR strain in G. mellonella was significantly attenuated. PMID:27388279

  17. Regulation of Francisella Tularensis Virulence

    PubMed Central

    Dai, Shipan; Mohapatra, Nrusingh P.; Schlesinger, Larry S.; Gunn, John S.

    2011-01-01

    Francisella tularensis is one of the most virulent bacteria known and a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Category A select agent. It is able to infect a variety of animals and insects and can persist in the environment, thus Francisella spp. must be able to survive in diverse environmental niches. However, F. tularensis has a surprising dearth of sensory and regulatory factors. Recent advancements in the field have identified new functions of encoded transcription factors and greatly expanded our understanding of virulence gene regulation. Here we review the current knowledge of environmental adaptation by F. tularensis, its transcriptional regulators and their relationship to animal virulence. PMID:21687801

  18. Analysis of mutant platelet-derived growth factor receptors expressed in PC12 cells identifies signals governing sodium channel induction during neuronal differentiation.

    PubMed Central

    Fanger, G R; Vaillancourt, R R; Heasley, L E; Montmayeur, J P; Johnson, G L; Maue, R A

    1997-01-01

    The mechanisms governing neuronal differentiation, including the signals underlying the induction of voltage-dependent sodium (Na+) channel expression by neurotrophic factors, which occurs independent of Ras activity, are not well understood. Therefore, Na+ channel induction was analyzed in sublines of PC12 cells stably expressing platelet-derived growth factor (PDGF) beta receptors with mutations that eliminate activation of specific signalling molecules. Mutations eliminating activation of phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase (PI3K), phospholipase C gamma (PLC gamma), the GTPase-activating protein (GAP), and Syp phosphatase failed to diminish the induction of type II Na+ channel alpha-subunit mRNA and functional Na+ channel expression by PDGF, as determined by RNase protection assays and whole-cell patch clamp recording. However, mutation of juxtamembrane tyrosines that bind members of the Src family of kinases upon receptor activation inhibited the induction of functional Na+ channels while leaving the induction of type II alpha-subunit mRNA intact. Mutation of juxtamembrane tyrosines in combination with mutations eliminating activation of PI3K, PLC gamma, GAP, and Syp abolished the induction of type II alpha-subunit mRNA, suggesting that at least partially redundant signaling mechanisms mediate this induction. The differential effects of the receptor mutations on Na+ channel expression did not reflect global changes in receptor signaling capabilities, as in all of the mutant receptors analyzed, the induction of c-fos and transin mRNAs still occurred. The results reveal an important role for the Src family in the induction of Na+ channel expression and highlight the multiplicity and combinatorial nature of the signaling mechanisms governing neuronal differentiation. PMID:8972189

  19. Capsule depolymerase overexpression reduces Bacillus anthracis virulence.

    PubMed

    Scorpio, Angelo; Chabot, Donald J; Day, William A; Hoover, Timothy A; Friedlander, Arthur M

    2010-05-01

    Capsule depolymerase (CapD) is a gamma-glutamyl transpeptidase and a product of the Bacillus anthracis capsule biosynthesis operon. In this study, we examined the effect of modulating capD expression on B. anthracis capsule phenotype, interaction with phagocytic cells and virulence in guinea pigs. Transcriptional fusions of capD were made to the genes encoding heat-shock protein 60 (hsp60) and elongation factor Tu (EFTu), and to capA, a B. anthracis capsule biosynthesis gene. Translation signals were altered to improve expression of capD, including replacing the putative ribosome-binding site with a consensus sequence and the TTG start codon with ATG. CapD was not detected by immunoblotting in lysates from wild-type B. anthracis Ames but was detected in strains engineered with a consensus ribosome-binding site for capD. Strains overexpressing capD at amounts detected by immunoblotting were found to have less surface-associated capsule and released primarily lower-molecular-mass capsule into culture supernatants. Overexpression of capD increased susceptibility to neutrophil phagocytic killing and adherence to macrophages and resulted in reduced fitness in a guinea pig model of infection. These data suggest that B. anthracis may have evolved weak capD expression resulting in optimized capsule-mediated virulence. PMID:20110296

  20. Cutting Edge: IL-4, IL-21, and IFN-γ Interact To Govern T-bet and CD11c Expression in TLR-Activated B Cells.

    PubMed

    Naradikian, Martin S; Myles, Arpita; Beiting, Daniel P; Roberts, Kenneth J; Dawson, Lucas; Herati, Ramin Sedaghat; Bengsch, Bertram; Linderman, Susanne L; Stelekati, Erietta; Spolski, Rosanne; Wherry, E John; Hunter, Christopher; Hensley, Scott E; Leonard, Warren J; Cancro, Michael P

    2016-08-15

    T-bet and CD11c expression in B cells is linked with IgG2c isotype switching, virus-specific immune responses, and humoral autoimmunity. However, the activation requisites and regulatory cues governing T-bet and CD11c expression in B cells remain poorly defined. In this article, we reveal a relationship among TLR engagement, IL-4, IL-21, and IFN-γ that regulates T-bet expression in B cells. We find that IL-21 or IFN-γ directly promote T-bet expression in the context of TLR engagement. Further, IL-4 antagonizes T-bet induction. Finally, IL-21, but not IFN-γ, promotes CD11c expression independent of T-bet. Using influenza virus and Heligmosomoides polygyrus infections, we show that these interactions function in vivo to determine whether T-bet(+) and CD11c(+) B cells are formed. These findings suggest that T-bet(+) B cells seen in health and disease share the common initiating features of TLR-driven activation within this circumscribed cytokine milieu. PMID:27430719

  1. Virulence Potential of Fusogenic Orthoreoviruses

    PubMed Central

    Cheng, Peter K.C.; Lai, Mary Y.Y.; Leung, Peter C.K.; Wong, Kitty K.Y.; Lee, W.Y.; Lim, Wilina W.L.

    2012-01-01

    Several severe respiratory virus infections that have emerged during the past decade originated in animals, including bats. In Indonesia, exposure to bats has been associated with increased risk of acquiring orthoreovirus infection. Although orthoreovirus infections are mild and self-limiting, we explored their potential for evolution into a more virulent form. We used conventional virus culture, electron microscopy, and molecular sequencing to isolate and identify orthoreoviruses from 3 patients in whom respiratory tract infection developed after travel to Indonesia. Virus characterization by plaque-reduction neutralization testing showed antigenic similarity, but sequencing of the small segment genes suggested virus reassortment, which could lead to increased virulence. Bats as a reservoir might contribute to virus evolution and genetic diversity, giving orthoreoviruses the potential to become more virulent. Evolution of this virus should be closely monitored so that prevention and control measures can be taken should it become more virulent. PMID:22608100

  2. RNA interference reveals that endogenous Xenopus MinK-related peptides govern mammalian K+ channel function in oocyte expression studies.

    PubMed

    Anantharam, Arun; Lewis, Anthony; Panaghie, Gianina; Gordon, Earl; McCrossan, Zoe A; Lerner, Daniel J; Abbott, Geoffrey W

    2003-04-01

    The physiological properties of most ion channels are defined experimentally by functional expression of their pore-forming alpha subunits in Xenopus laevis oocytes. Here, we cloned a family of Xenopus KCNE genes that encode MinK-related peptide K(+) channel beta subunits (xMiRPs) and demonstrated their constitutive expression in oocytes. Electrophysiological analysis of xMiRP2 revealed that when overexpressed this gene modulates human cardiac K(+) channel alpha subunits HERG (human ether-a-go-go-related gene) and KCNQ1 by suppressing HERG currents and removing the voltage dependence of KCNQ1 activation. The ability of endogenous levels of xMiRP2 to contribute to the biophysical attributes of overexpressed mammalian K(+) channels in oocyte studies was assessed next. Injection of an xMiRP2 sequence-specific short interfering RNA (siRNA) oligo reduced endogenous xMiRP2 expression 5-fold, whereas a control siRNA oligo had no effect, indicating the effectiveness of the RNA interference technique in Xenopus oocytes. The functional effects of endogenous xMiRP2 silencing were tested using electrophysiological analysis of heterologously expressed HERG channels. The RNA interference-mediated reduction of endogenous xMiRP2 expression increased macroscopic HERG current as much as 10-fold depending on HERG cRNA concentration. The functional effects of human MiRP1 (hMiRP1)/HERG interaction were also affected by endogenous xMiRP2. At high HERG channel density, at which the effects of endogenous xMiRP2 are minimal, hMiRP1 reduced HERG current. At low HERG current density, hMiRP1 paradoxically up-regulated HERG current, a result consistent with hMiRP1 rescuing HERG from suppression by endogenous xMiRP2. Thus, endogenous Xenopus MiRP subunits contribute to the base-line properties of K(+) channels like HERG in oocyte expression studies, which could explain expression level- and expression system-dependent variation in K(+) channel function. PMID:12529362

  3. Identification of gyrB and rpoB gene mutations and differentially expressed proteins between a novobiocin-resistant Aeromonas hydrophila catfish vaccine strain and its virulent parent strain

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Sequence comparison between the full-length 2412 bp DNA gyrase subunit B (gyrB) gene of a novobiocin resistant Aeromonas hydrophila AH11NOVO vaccine strain and that of its virulent parent strain AH11P revealed 10 missense mutations. Similarly, sequence comparison between the full-length 4092 bp RNA ...

  4. REST-Governed Gene Expression Profiling in a Neuronal Cell Model Reveals Novel Direct and Indirect Processes of Repression and Up-Regulation

    PubMed Central

    Garcia-Manteiga, Jose M.; Bonfiglio, Silvia; Folladori, Lucrezia; Malosio, Maria L.; Lazarevic, Dejan; Stupka, Elia; Cittaro, Davide; Meldolesi, Jacopo

    2015-01-01

    The role of REST changes in neurons, including the rapid decrease of its level during differentiation and its fluctuations during many mature functions and diseases, is well established. However, identification of many thousand possible REST-target genes, mostly based on indirect criteria, and demonstration of their operative dependence on the repressor have been established for only a relatively small fraction. In the present study, starting from our recently published work, we have expanded the identification of REST-dependent genes, investigated in two clones of the PC12 line, a recognized neuronal cell model, spontaneously expressing different levels of REST: very low as in neurons and much higher as in most non-neural cells. The molecular, structural and functional differences of the two PC12 clones were shown to depend largely on their different REST level and the ensuing variable expression of some dependent genes. Comprehensive RNA-Seq analyses of the 13,700 genes expressed, validated by parallel RT-PCR and western analyses of mRNAs and encoded proteins, identified in the high-REST clone two groups of almost 900 repressed and up-regulated genes. Repression is often due to direct binding of REST to target genes; up-regulation to indirect mechanism(s) mostly mediated by REST repression of repressive transcription factors. Most, but not all, genes governing neurosecretion, excitability, and receptor channel signaling were repressed in the high REST clone. The genes governing expression of non-channel receptors (G protein-coupled and others), although variably affected, were often up-regulated together with the genes of intracellular kinases, small G proteins, cytoskeleton, cell adhesion, and extracellular matrix proteins. Expression of REST-dependent genes governing functions other than those mentioned so far were also identified. The results obtained by the parallel investigation of the two PC12 clones revealed the complexity of the REST molecular and

  5. Convergent Evolution of Calcineurin Pathway Roles in Thermotolerance and Virulence in Candida glabrata

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Ying-Lien; Konieczka, Jay H.; Springer, Deborah J.; Bowen, Samantha E.; Zhang, Jing; Silao, Fitz Gerald S.; Bungay, Alice Alma C.; Bigol, Ursela G.; Nicolas, Marilou G.; Abraham, Soman N.; Thompson, Dawn A.; Regev, Aviv; Heitman, Joseph

    2012-01-01

    Candida glabrata is an emerging human fungal pathogen that is frequently drug tolerant, resulting in difficulties in treatment and a higher mortality in immunocompromised patients. The calcium-activated protein phosphatase calcineurin plays critical roles in controlling drug tolerance, hyphal growth, and virulence in diverse fungal pathogens via distinct mechanisms involving survival in serum or growth at host temperature (37° and higher). Here, we comprehensively studied the calcineurin signaling cascade in C. glabrata and found novel and uncharacterized functions of calcineurin and its downstream target Crz1 in governing thermotolerance, intracellular architecture, and pathogenesis in murine ocular, urinary tract, and systemic infections. This represents a second independent origin of a role for calcineurin in thermotolerant growth of a major human fungal pathogen, distinct from that which arose independently in Cryptococcus neoformans. Calcineurin also promotes survival of C. glabrata in serum via mechanisms distinct from C. albicans and thereby enables establishment of tissue colonization in a murine systemic infection model. To understand calcineurin signaling in detail, we performed global transcript profiling analysis and identified calcineurin- and Crz1-dependent genes in C. glabrata involved in cell wall biosynthesis, heat shock responses, and calcineurin function. Regulators of calcineurin (RCN) are a novel family of calcineurin modifiers, and two members of this family were identified in C. glabrata: Rcn1 and Rcn2. Our studies demonstrate that Rcn2 expression is controlled by calcineurin and Crz1 to function as a feedback inhibitor of calcineurin in a circuit required for calcium tolerance in C. glabrata. In contrast, the calcineurin regulator Rcn1 activates calcineurin signaling. Interestingly, neither Rcn1 nor Rcn2 is required for virulence in a murine systemic infection model. Taken together, our findings show that calcineurin signaling plays

  6. Transcriptome Sequencing Reveals the Virulence and Environmental Genetic Programs of Vibrio vulnificus Exposed to Host and Estuarine Conditions

    PubMed Central

    Williams, Tiffany C.; Blackman, Elliot R.; Morrison, Shatavia S.; Gibas, Cynthia J.; Oliver, James D.

    2014-01-01

    Vibrio vulnificus is a natural inhabitant of estuarine waters worldwide and is of medical relevance due to its ability to cause grievous wound infections and/or fatal septicemia. Genetic polymorphisms within the virulence-correlated gene (vcg) serve as a primary feature to distinguish clinical (C-) genotypes from environmental (E-) genotypes. C-genotypes demonstrate superior survival in human serum relative to E-genotypes, and genome comparisons have allowed for the identification of several putative virulence factors that could potentially aid C-genotypes in disease progression. We used RNA sequencing to analyze the transcriptome of C-genotypes exposed to human serum relative to seawater, which revealed two divergent genetic programs under these two conditions. In human serum, cells displayed a distinct “virulence profile” in which a number of putative virulence factors were upregulated, including genes involved in intracellular signaling, substrate binding and transport, toxin and exoenzyme production, and the heat shock response. Conversely, the “environmental profile” exhibited by cells in seawater revealed upregulation of transcription factors such as rpoS, rpoN, and iscR, as well as genes involved in intracellular signaling, chemotaxis, adherence, and biofilm formation. This dichotomous genetic switch appears to be largely governed by cyclic-di-GMP signaling, and remarkably resembles the dual life-style of V. cholerae as it transitions from host to environment. Furthermore, we found a “general stress response” module, known as the stressosome, to be upregulated in seawater. This signaling system has been well characterized in Gram-positive bacteria, however its role in V. vulnificus is not clear. We examined temporal gene expression patterns of the stressosome and found it to be upregulated in natural estuarine waters indicating that this system plays a role in sensing and responding to the environment. This study advances our understanding of

  7. Burkholderia thailandensis Is Virulent in Drosophila melanogaster

    PubMed Central

    Pilátová, Martina; Dionne, Marc S.

    2012-01-01

    Melioidosis is a serious infectious disease endemic to Southeast Asia and Northern Australia. This disease is caused by the Gram-negative bacterium Burkholderia pseudomallei; Burkholderia thailandensis is a closely-related organism known to be avirulent in humans. B. thailandensis has not previously been used to infect Drosophila melanogaster. We examined the effect of B. thailandensis infection on fly survival, on antimicrobial peptide expression, and on phagocytic cells. In the fruit fly, which possesses only an innate immune system, B. thailandensis is highly virulent, causing rapid death when injected or fed. One intriguing aspect of this infection is its temperature dependence: infected flies maintained at 25°C exhibit rapid bacterial proliferation and death in a few days, while infected animals maintained at 18°C exhibit very slow bacterial proliferation and take weeks to die; this effect is due in part to differences in immune activity of the host. Death in this infection is likely due at least in part to a secreted toxin, as injection of flies with sterile B. thailandensis-conditioned medium is able to kill. B. thailandensis infection strongly induces the expression of antimicrobial peptides, but this is insufficient to inhibit bacterial proliferation in infected flies. Finally, the function of fly phagocytes is not affected by B. thailandensis infection. The high virulence of B. thailandensis in the fly suggests the possibility that this organism is a natural pathogen of one or more invertebrates. PMID:23209596

  8. Dissection of Genetic Mechanisms Governing the Expression of Serum Retroviral gp70 Implicated in Murine Lupus Nephritis1

    PubMed Central

    Baudino, Lucie; Yoshinobu, Kumiko; Morito, Naoki; Kikuchi, Shuichi; Fossati-Jimack, Liliane; Morley, Bernard J.; Vyse, Timothy J.; Hirose, Sachiko; Jørgensen, Trine N.; Tucker, Rebecca M.; Roark, Christina L.; Kotzin, Brian L.; Evans, Leonard H.; Izui, Shozo

    2008-01-01

    The endogenous retroviral envelope glycoprotein, gp70, implicated in murine lupus nephritis is secreted by hepatocytes as an acute phase protein, and has been believed to be a product of an endogenous xenotropic virus, NZB-X1. However, since endogenous polytropic (PT) and modified polytropic (mPT) viruses encode gp70s that are closely related to xenotropic gp70, these viruses can be additional sources of serum gp70. To better understand the genetic basis of the expression of serum gp70, we analyzed the abundance of xenotropic, PT or mPT gp70 RNAs in livers and the genomic composition of corresponding proviruses in various strains of mice, including two different Sgp (serum gp70 production) congenic mice. Our results demonstrated that the expression of different viral gp70 RNAs was remarkable heterogeneous among various mouse strains and that the level of serum gp70 production was regulated by multiple structural and regulatory genes. In addition, a significant contribution of PT and mPT gp70s to serum gp70 was revealed by the detection of PT and mPT, but not xenotropic transcripts in 129 mice and by a closer correlation of serum levels of gp70 with the abundance of PT and mPT gp70 RNAs than with that of xenotropic gp70 RNA in Sgp3 congenic mice. Furthermore, the injection of lipopolysaccharides selectively up-regulated the expression of xenotropic and mPT gp70 RNAs, but not PT gp70 RNA. Our data indicate that the genetic origin of serum gp70 is more heterogeneous than previously believed, and that distinct retroviral gp70s are differentially regulated in physiological vs. inflammatory conditions. PMID:18684976

  9. Full Virulence of Pseudomonas aeruginosa Requires OprF▿

    PubMed Central

    Fito-Boncompte, Laurène; Chapalain, Annelise; Bouffartigues, Emeline; Chaker, Hichem; Lesouhaitier, Olivier; Gicquel, Gwendoline; Bazire, Alexis; Madi, Amar; Connil, Nathalie; Véron, Wilfried; Taupin, Laure; Toussaint, Bertrand; Cornelis, Pierre; Wei, Qing; Shioya, Koki; Déziel, Eric; Feuilloley, Marc G. J.; Orange, Nicole; Dufour, Alain; Chevalier, Sylvie

    2011-01-01

    OprF is a general outer membrane porin of Pseudomonas aeruginosa, a well-known human opportunistic pathogen associated with severe hospital-acquired sepsis and chronic lung infections of cystic fibrosis patients. A multiphenotypic approach, based on the comparative study of a wild-type strain of P. aeruginosa, its isogenic oprF mutant, and an oprF-complemented strain, showed that OprF is required for P. aeruginosa virulence. The absence of OprF results in impaired adhesion to animal cells, secretion of ExoT and ExoS toxins through the type III secretion system (T3SS), and production of the quorum-sensing-dependent virulence factors pyocyanin, elastase, lectin PA-1L, and exotoxin A. Accordingly, in the oprF mutant, production of the signal molecules N-(3-oxododecanoyl)-l-homoserine lactone and N-butanoyl-l-homoserine lactone was found to be reduced and delayed, respectively. Pseudomonas quinolone signal (PQS) production was decreased, while its precursor, 4-hydroxy-2-heptylquinoline (HHQ), accumulated in the cells. Taken together, these results show the involvement of OprF in P. aeruginosa virulence, at least partly through modulation of the quorum-sensing network. This is the first study showing a link between OprF, PQS synthesis, T3SS, and virulence factor production, providing novel insights into virulence expression. PMID:21189321

  10. Full virulence of Pseudomonas aeruginosa requires OprF.

    PubMed

    Fito-Boncompte, Laurène; Chapalain, Annelise; Bouffartigues, Emeline; Chaker, Hichem; Lesouhaitier, Olivier; Gicquel, Gwendoline; Bazire, Alexis; Madi, Amar; Connil, Nathalie; Véron, Wilfried; Taupin, Laure; Toussaint, Bertrand; Cornelis, Pierre; Wei, Qing; Shioya, Koki; Déziel, Eric; Feuilloley, Marc G J; Orange, Nicole; Dufour, Alain; Chevalier, Sylvie

    2011-03-01

    OprF is a general outer membrane porin of Pseudomonas aeruginosa, a well-known human opportunistic pathogen associated with severe hospital-acquired sepsis and chronic lung infections of cystic fibrosis patients. A multiphenotypic approach, based on the comparative study of a wild-type strain of P. aeruginosa, its isogenic oprF mutant, and an oprF-complemented strain, showed that OprF is required for P. aeruginosa virulence. The absence of OprF results in impaired adhesion to animal cells, secretion of ExoT and ExoS toxins through the type III secretion system (T3SS), and production of the quorum-sensing-dependent virulence factors pyocyanin, elastase, lectin PA-1L, and exotoxin A. Accordingly, in the oprF mutant, production of the signal molecules N-(3-oxododecanoyl)-l-homoserine lactone and N-butanoyl-l-homoserine lactone was found to be reduced and delayed, respectively. Pseudomonas quinolone signal (PQS) production was decreased, while its precursor, 4-hydroxy-2-heptylquinoline (HHQ), accumulated in the cells. Taken together, these results show the involvement of OprF in P. aeruginosa virulence, at least partly through modulation of the quorum-sensing network. This is the first study showing a link between OprF, PQS synthesis, T3SS, and virulence factor production, providing novel insights into virulence expression. PMID:21189321

  11. Pseudomonas aeruginosa Virulence and Therapy: Evolving Translational Strategies

    PubMed Central

    Veesenmeyer, Jeffrey L.; Lisboa, Thiago; Rello, Jordi

    2009-01-01

    Structured abstract Objective Although most reviews of Pseudomonas aeruginosa therapeutics focus on antibiotics currently in use or in the pipeline, we review evolving translational strategies aimed at using virulence factor antagonists as adjuvant therapies. Data Source Current literature regarding P. aeruginosa virulence determinants and approaches that target them, with an emphasis on type III secretion, quorum-sensing, biofilms, and flagella. Data Extraction and Synthesis P. aeruginosa remains one of the most important pathogens in nosocomial infections, with high associated morbidity and mortality. Its predilection to develop resistance to antibiotics and expression of multiple virulence factors contributes to the frequent ineffectiveness of current therapies. Among the many P. aeruginosa virulence determinants that impact infections, type III secretion, quorum sensing, biofilm formation, and flagella have been the focus of much recent investigation. Here we review how increased understanding of these important bacterial structures and processes has enabled the development of novel approaches to inhibit each. These promising translational strategies may lead to the development of adjuvant therapies capable of improving outcomes. Conclusions Adjuvant therapies directed against virulence factors have the potential to improve outcomes in P. aeruginosa infections. PMID:19325463

  12. When experimental selection for virulence leads to loss of virulence.

    PubMed

    Rafaluk, Charlotte; Jansen, Gunther; Schulenburg, Hinrich; Joop, Gerrit

    2015-09-01

    Information on virulence evolution is critical for understanding disease dynamics. Theory predicts that under certain evolutionary conditions virulence should increase; for example, during host-parasite coevolution. Although these theoretical predictions are supported by natural observations, tests of these hypotheses using experimental evolution have yielded confounding and contradictory results, with discrepancies often being seen among experiments. Here we provide a critical overview of experimental tests of hypotheses regarding virulence evolution and provide potential explanations for the contradictory results. We emphasise the key role of parasite transmission mechanisms that can explain many of the observed discrepancies among evolution experiments. Finally, we make suggestions for how evolution experiments could be conducted in the future to avoid potentially confounding factors. PMID:26166750

  13. A Nucleus-Encoded Chloroplast Phosphoprotein Governs Expression of the Photosystem I Subunit PsaC in Chlamydomonas reinhardtii.

    PubMed

    Douchi, Damien; Qu, Yujiao; Longoni, Paolo; Legendre-Lefebvre, Linnka; Johnson, Xenie; Schmitz-Linneweber, Christian; Goldschmidt-Clermont, Michel

    2016-05-01

    The nucleo-cytoplasmic compartment exerts anterograde control on chloroplast gene expression through numerous proteins that intervene at posttranscriptional steps. Here, we show that the maturation of psaC mutant (mac1) of Chlamydomonas reinhardtii is defective in photosystem I and fails to accumulate psaC mRNA. The MAC1 locus encodes a member of the Half-A-Tetratricopeptide (HAT) family of super-helical repeat proteins, some of which are involved in RNA transactions. The Mac1 protein localizes to the chloroplast in the soluble fraction. MAC1 acts through the 5' untranslated region of psaC transcripts and is required for their stability. Small RNAs that map to the 5'end of psaC RNA in the wild type but not in the mac1 mutant are inferred to represent footprints of MAC1-dependent protein binding, and Mac1 expressed in bacteria binds RNA in vitro. A coordinate response to iron deficiency, which leads to dismantling of the photosynthetic electron transfer chain and in particular of photosystem I, also causes a decrease of Mac1. Overexpression of Mac1 leads to a parallel increase in psaC mRNA but not in PsaC protein, suggesting that Mac1 may be limiting for psaC mRNA accumulation but that other processes regulate protein accumulation. Furthermore, Mac 1 is differentially phosphorylated in response to iron availability and to conditions that alter the redox balance of the electron transfer chain. PMID:27113776

  14. Virulence-Associated Enzymes of Cryptococcus neoformans

    PubMed Central

    Almeida, Fausto; Wolf, Julie M.

    2015-01-01

    Enzymes play key roles in fungal pathogenesis. Manipulation of enzyme expression or activity can significantly alter the infection process, and enzyme expression profiles can be a hallmark of disease. Hence, enzymes are worthy targets for better understanding pathogenesis and identifying new options for combatting fungal infections. Advances in genomics, proteomics, transcriptomics, and mass spectrometry have enabled the identification and characterization of new fungal enzymes. This review focuses on recent developments in the virulence-associated enzymes from Cryptococcus neoformans. The enzymatic suite of C. neoformans has evolved for environmental survival, but several of these enzymes play a dual role in colonizing the mammalian host. We also discuss new therapeutic and diagnostic strategies that could be based on the underlying enzymology. PMID:26453651

  15. The Membrane Proteins Involved in Virulence of Cronobacter sakazakii Virulent G362 and Attenuated L3101 Isolates

    PubMed Central

    Ye, YingWang; Gao, Jina; Jiao, Rui; Li, Hui; Wu, Qingping; Zhang, Jumei; Zhong, Xian

    2015-01-01

    Cronobacter sakazakii is an opportunistic foodborne pathogen and the virulence differences were previously documented. However, information about membranous proteins involved in virulence differences was not available. In this study, virulent characterization such as biofilm formation and flagella motility between virulent C. sakazakii isolate G362 and attenuated L3101 were determined. Then, two-dimensional gel electrophoresis (2-DE) technology was used to preliminarily reveal differential expression of membranous proteins between G362 and L3101. On the mass spectrometry (MS) analysis and MASCOT research results, fourteen proteins with differential expression were successfully identified. At the threshold of twofold changes, five out of eight membranous proteins were up-regulated in G362. Using RT-PCR, the expression abundance of the protein (enzV, ompX, lptE, pstB, and OsmY) genes at mRNA levels was consistent with the results by 2-DE method. The findings presented here provided novel information and valuable knowledge for revealing pathogenic mechanism of C. sakazakii. PMID:26617581

  16. Indole and 7-benzyloxyindole attenuate the virulence of Staphylococcus aureus.

    PubMed

    Lee, Jin-Hyung; Cho, Hyun Seob; Kim, Younghoon; Kim, Jung-Ae; Banskota, Suhrid; Cho, Moo Hwan; Lee, Jintae

    2013-05-01

    Human pathogens can readily develop drug resistance due to the long-term use of antibiotics that mostly inhibit bacterial growth. Unlike antibiotics, antivirulence compounds diminish bacterial virulence without affecting cell viability and thus, may not lead to drug resistance. Staphylococcus aureus is a major agent of nosocomial infections and produces diverse virulence factors, such as the yellow carotenoid staphyloxanthin, which promotes resistance to reactive oxygen species (ROS) and the host immune system. To identify novel antivirulence compounds, bacterial signal indole present in animal gut and diverse indole derivatives were investigated with respect to reducing staphyloxanthin production and the hemolytic activity of S. aureus. Treatment with indole or its derivative 7-benzyloxyindole (7BOI) caused S. aureus to become colorless and inhibited its hemolytic ability without affecting bacterial growth. As a result, S. aureus was more easily killed by hydrogen peroxide (H₂O₂) and by human whole blood in the presence of indole or 7BOI. In addition, 7BOI attenuated S. aureus virulence in an in vivo model of nematode Caenorhabditis elegans, which is readily infected and killed by S. aureus. Transcriptional analyses showed that both indole and 7BOI repressed the expressions of several virulence genes such as α-hemolysin gene hla, enterotoxin seb, and the protease genes splA and sspA and modulated the expressions of the important regulatory genes agrA and sarA. These findings show that indole derivatives are potential candidates for use in antivirulence strategies against persistent S. aureus infection. PMID:23318836

  17. Virulence Program of a Bacterial Plant Pathogen: The Dickeya Model.

    PubMed

    Reverchon, S; Muskhelisvili, G; Nasser, W

    2016-01-01

    The pectinolytic Dickeya spp. are Gram-negative bacteria causing severe disease in a wide range of plant species. Although the Dickeya genus was initially restricted to tropical and subtropical areas, two Dickeya species (D. dianthicola and D. solani) emerged recently in potato cultures in Europe. Soft-rot, the visible symptoms, is caused by plant cell wall degrading enzymes, mainly pectate lyases (Pels) that cleave the pectin polymer. However, an efficient colonization of the host requires many additional elements including early factors (eg, flagella, lipopolysaccharide, and exopolysaccharide) that allow adhesion of the bacteria and intermediate factors involved in adaptation to new growth conditions encountered in the host (eg, oxidative stress, iron starvation, and toxic compounds). To facilitate this adaptation, Dickeya have developed complex regulatory networks ensuring appropriate expression of virulence genes. This review presents recent advances in our understanding of the signals and genetic circuits impacting the expression of virulence determinants. Special attention is paid to integrated control of virulence functions by variations in the superhelical density of chromosomal DNA, and the global and specific regulators, making the regulation of Dickeya virulence an especially attractive model for those interested in relationships between the chromosomal dynamics and gene regulatory networks. PMID:27571692

  18. Interplay between genetic regulation of phosphate homeostasis and bacterial virulence

    PubMed Central

    Chekabab, Samuel Mohammed; Harel, Josée; Dozois, Charles M

    2014-01-01

    Bacterial pathogens, including those of humans, animals, and plants, encounter phosphate (Pi)-limiting or Pi-rich environments in the host, depending on the site of infection. The environmental Pi-concentration results in modulation of expression of the Pho regulon that allows bacteria to regulate phosphate assimilation pathways accordingly. In many cases, modulation of Pho regulon expression also results in concomitant changes in virulence phenotypes. Under Pi-limiting conditions, bacteria use the transcriptional-response regulator PhoB to translate the Pi starvation signal sensed by the bacterium into gene activation or repression. This regulator is employed not only for the maintenance of bacterial Pi homeostasis but also to differentially regulate virulence. The Pho regulon is therefore not only a regulatory circuit of phosphate homeostasis but also plays an important adaptive role in stress response and bacterial virulence. Here we focus on recent findings regarding the mechanisms of gene regulation that underlie the virulence responses to Pi stress in Vibrio cholerae, Pseudomonas spp., and pathogenic E. coli. PMID:25483775

  19. Metabolism and virulence in Neisseria meningitidis

    PubMed Central

    Schoen, Christoph; Kischkies, Laura; Elias, Johannes; Ampattu, Biju Joseph

    2014-01-01

    A longstanding question in infection biology addresses the genetic basis for invasive behavior 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. PMID:25191646

  20. The SmeYZ efflux pump of Stenotrophomonas maltophilia contributes to drug resistance, virulence-related characteristics, and virulence in mice.

    PubMed

    Lin, Yi-Tsung; Huang, Yi-Wei; Chen, Shiang-Jiuun; Chang, Chia-Wei; Yang, Tsuey-Ching

    2015-07-01

    The resistance-nodulation-division (RND)-type efflux pump is one of the causes of the multidrug resistance of Stenotrophomonas maltophilia. The roles of the RND-type efflux pump in physiological functions and virulence, in addition to antibiotic extrusion, have attracted much attention. In this study, the contributions of the constitutively expressed SmeYZ efflux pump to drug resistance, virulence-related characteristics, and virulence were evaluated. S. maltophilia KJ is a clinical isolate of multidrug resistance. The smeYZ isogenic deletion mutant, KJΔYZ, was constructed by a gene replacement strategy. The antimicrobial susceptibility, virulence-related physiological characteristics, susceptibility to human serum and neutrophils, and in vivo virulence between KJ and KJΔYZ were comparatively assessed. The SmeYZ efflux pump contributed resistance to aminoglycosides and trimethoprim-sulfamethoxazole. Inactivation of smeYZ resulted in attenuation of oxidative stress susceptibility, swimming, flagella formation, biofilm formation, and secreted protease activity. Furthermore, loss of SmeYZ increased susceptibility to human serum and neutrophils and decreased in vivo virulence in a murine model. These findings suggest the possibility of attenuation of the resistance and virulence of S. maltophilia with inhibitors of the SmeYZ efflux pump. PMID:25918140

  1. Large-Scale Identification of Virulence Genes from Streptococcus pneumoniae

    PubMed Central

    Polissi, Alessandra; Pontiggia, Andrea; Feger, Georg; Altieri, Mario; Mottl, Harald; Ferrari, Livia; Simon, Daniel

    1998-01-01

    Streptococcus pneumoniae is the major cause of bacterial pneumonia, and it is also responsible for otitis media and meningitis in children. Apart from the capsule, the virulence factors of this pathogen are not completely understood. Recent technical advances in the field of bacterial pathogenesis (in vivo expression technology and signature-tagged mutagenesis [STM]) have allowed a large-scale identification of virulence genes. We have adapted to S. pneumoniae the STM technique, originally used for the discovery of Salmonella genes involved in pathogenicity. A library of pneumococcal chromosomal fragments (400 to 600 bp) was constructed in a suicide plasmid vector carrying unique DNA sequence tags and a chloramphenicol resistance marker. The recent clinical isolate G54 was transformed with this library. Chloramphenicol-resistant mutants were obtained by homologous recombination, resulting in genes inactivated by insertion of the suicide vector carrying a unique tag. In a mouse pneumonia model, 1.250 candidate clones were screened; 200 of these were not recovered from the lungs were therefore considered virulence-attenuated mutants. The regions flanking the chloramphenicol gene of the attenuated mutants were amplified by inverse PCR and sequenced. The sequence analysis showed that the 200 mutants had insertions in 126 different genes that could be grouped in six classes: (i) known pneumococcal virulence genes; (ii) genes involved in metabolic pathways; (iii) genes encoding proteases; (iv) genes coding for ATP binding cassette transporters; (v) genes encoding proteins involved in DNA recombination/repair; and (vi) DNA sequences that showed similarity to hypothetical genes with unknown function. To evaluate the virulence attenuation for each mutant, all 126 clones were individually analyzed in a mouse septicemia model. Not all mutants selected in the pneumonia model were confirmed in septicemia, thus indicating the existence of virulence factors specific for pneumonia

  2. Deciphering the Molecular Variations of Pine Wood Nematode Bursaphelenchus xylophilus with Different Virulence.

    PubMed

    Ding, Xiaolei; Ye, Jianren; Lin, Sixi; Wu, Xiaoqin; Li, Dewei; Nian, Bo

    2016-01-01

    Bursaphelenchus xylophilus is the causative agent of pine wilt disease which has caused huge economic losses in many countries. It has been reported that two forms of pine wood nematodes existed in its native region, i.e., with strong virulence and weak virulence. However, little is known about the molecular differences between the two forms. To better understand their molecular variations, transcriptome and genome sequences of three strongly virulent and one weakly virulent strains were analyzed. We found 238 transcripts and 84 exons which showed notable changes between the two virulent forms. Functional analyses of both differentially expressed transcripts and exons indicated that different virulence strains showed dissimilar nematode growth, reproduction, and oxidoreductase activities. In addition, we also detected a small number of exon-skipping events in B. xylophilus. Meanwhile, 117 SNPs were identified as potential genetic markers in distinguishing the two forms. Four of them were further proved to have undergone allele specific expressions and possibly interrupted the target site of evolutionary conserved B. xylophilus miR-47. These particular SNPs were experimentally verified by including eight additional strains to ensure the validity of our sequencing results. These results could help researchers to better diagnose nematode species with different virulence and facilitate the control of pine wilt disease. PMID:27224277

  3. Identification of potential virulence factors of Cronobacter sakazakii isolates by comparative proteomic analysis.

    PubMed

    Ye, Yingwang; Li, Hui; Ling, Na; Han, Yongjia; Wu, Qingping; Xu, Xiaoke; Jiao, Rui; Gao, Jina

    2016-01-18

    Cronobacter is a group of important foodborne pathogens associated with neonatal meningitis, septicemia, and necrotizing enterocolitis. Among Cronobacter species, Cronobacter sakazakii is the most common species in terms of isolation frequency. However, the molecular basis involved in virulence differences among C. sakazakii isolates is still unknown. In this study, based on the determination of virulence differences of C. sakazakii G362 (virulent isolate) and L3101 (attenuated isolate) through intraperitoneal injection, histopathologic analysis (small intestine, kidney, and liver) further confirmed virulence differences. Thereafter, the potential virulence factors were determined using two-dimensional electrophoresis (2-DE) coupled with MALDI/TOP/TOF mass spectrometry. Among a total of 36 protein spots showing differential expression (fold change>1.2), we identified 31 different proteins, of which the expression abundance of 22 was increased in G362. These up-regulated proteins in G362 mainly contained DNA starvation/stationary phase protection protein Dps, OmpA, LuxS, ATP-dependent Clp protease ClpC, and ABC transporter substrate-binding proteins, which might be involved in virulence of C. sakazakii. This is the first report to determine the potential virulence factors of C. sakazakii isolates at the proteomic levels. PMID:26546912

  4. Deciphering the Molecular Variations of Pine Wood Nematode Bursaphelenchus xylophilus with Different Virulence

    PubMed Central

    Ding, Xiaolei; Ye, Jianren; Lin, Sixi; Wu, Xiaoqin; Li, Dewei; Nian, Bo

    2016-01-01

    Bursaphelenchus xylophilus is the causative agent of pine wilt disease which has caused huge economic losses in many countries. It has been reported that two forms of pine wood nematodes existed in its native region, i.e., with strong virulence and weak virulence. However, little is known about the molecular differences between the two forms. To better understand their molecular variations, transcriptome and genome sequences of three strongly virulent and one weakly virulent strains were analyzed. We found 238 transcripts and 84 exons which showed notable changes between the two virulent forms. Functional analyses of both differentially expressed transcripts and exons indicated that different virulence strains showed dissimilar nematode growth, reproduction, and oxidoreductase activities. In addition, we also detected a small number of exon-skipping events in B. xylophilus. Meanwhile, 117 SNPs were identified as potential genetic markers in distinguishing the two forms. Four of them were further proved to have undergone allele specific expressions and possibly interrupted the target site of evolutionary conserved B. xylophilus miR-47. These particular SNPs were experimentally verified by including eight additional strains to ensure the validity of our sequencing results. These results could help researchers to better diagnose nematode species with different virulence and facilitate the control of pine wilt disease. PMID:27224277

  5. The metabolic regulator CodY links Listeria monocytogenes metabolism to virulence by directly activating the virulence regulatory gene prfA.

    PubMed

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

    2015-02-01

    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 (BCAAs) 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

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

    PubMed Central

    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

  7. Mitogen-activated protein kinases are associated with the regulation of physiological traits and virulence in Fusarium oxysporum f. sp. cubense.

    PubMed

    Ding, Zhaojian; Li, Minhui; Sun, Fei; Xi, Pinggen; Sun, Longhua; Zhang, Lianhui; Jiang, Zide

    2015-01-01

    Fusarium oxysporum f. sp. cubense (FOC) is an important soil-borne fungal pathogen causing devastating vascular wilt disease of banana plants and has become a great concern threatening banana production worldwide. However, little information is known about the molecular mechanisms that govern the expression of virulence determinants of this important fungal pathogen. In this study, we showed that null mutation of three mitogen-activated protein (MAP) kinase genes, designated as FoSlt2, FoMkk2 and FoBck1, respectively, led to substantial attenuation in fungal virulence on banana plants. Transcriptional analysis revealed that the MAP kinase signaling pathway plays a key role in regulation of the genes encoding production of chitin, peroxidase, beauvericin and fusaric acid. Biochemical analysis further confirmed the essential role of MAP kinases in modulating the production of fusaric acid, which was a crucial phytotoxin in accelerating development of Fusarium wilt symptoms in banana plants. Additionally, we found that the MAP kinase FoSlt2 was required for siderophore biosynthesis under iron-depletion conditions. Moreover, disruption of the MAP kinase genes resulted in abnormal hypha and increased sensitivity to Congo Red, Calcofluor White and H2O2. Taken together, these results depict the critical roles of MAP kinases in regulation of FOC physiology and virulence. PMID:25849862

  8. Mitogen-Activated Protein Kinases Are Associated with the Regulation of Physiological Traits and Virulence in Fusarium oxysporum f. sp. cubense

    PubMed Central

    Ding, Zhaojian; Li, Minhui; Sun, Fei; Xi, Pinggen; Sun, Longhua; Zhang, Lianhui; Jiang, Zide

    2015-01-01

    Fusarium oxysporum f. sp. cubense (FOC) is an important soil-borne fungal pathogen causing devastating vascular wilt disease of banana plants and has become a great concern threatening banana production worldwide. However, little information is known about the molecular mechanisms that govern the expression of virulence determinants of this important fungal pathogen. In this study, we showed that null mutation of three mitogen-activated protein (MAP) kinase genes, designated as FoSlt2, FoMkk2 and FoBck1, respectively, led to substantial attenuation in fungal virulence on banana plants. Transcriptional analysis revealed that the MAP kinase signaling pathway plays a key role in regulation of the genes encoding production of chitin, peroxidase, beauvericin and fusaric acid. Biochemical analysis further confirmed the essential role of MAP kinases in modulating the production of fusaric acid, which was a crucial phytotoxin in accelerating development of Fusarium wilt symptoms in banana plants. Additionally, we found that the MAP kinase FoSlt2 was required for siderophore biosynthesis under iron-depletion conditions. Moreover, disruption of the MAP kinase genes resulted in abnormal hypha and increased sensitivity to Congo Red, Calcofluor White and H2O2. Taken together, these results depict the critical roles of MAP kinases in regulation of FOC physiology and virulence. PMID:25849862

  9. Biotypes and virulence factors of Gardnerella vaginalis isolated from cases of bacterial vaginosis.

    PubMed

    Udayalaxmi, J; Bhat, G K; Kotigadde, S

    2011-01-01

    The present study was conducted to correlate the biotypes of Gardnerella vaginalis strains isolated from cases of bacterial vaginosis and their virulence factors. Thirty-two strains of G. vaginalis isolated from cases of bacterial vaginosis were biotyped. Adherence to vaginal epithelial cells, biofilm production, surface hydrophobicity, phospholipase C and protease activity were tested on these isolates. Biotype 1 was the most prevalent (8; 25%), followed by biotype 2 (7; 21.9%) and biotypes 5 and 8 (5; 15.6%). We did not find any statistical correlation between G. vaginalis biotypes and its virulence factors. Virulence factors expressed by G. vaginalis were not associated with a single biotype. PMID:21654113

  10. The Fimbrial Protein is a Virulence Factor and Potential Vaccine Antigen of Avibacterium paragallinarum.

    PubMed

    Liu, C-C; Ou, S-C; Tan, D-H; Hsieh, M-K; Shien, J-H; Chang, P-C

    2016-09-01

    Fimbriae are recognized as virulence factors and potential vaccine antigens of several pathogenic bacteria, but the function of the fimbriae from Avibacterium paragallinarum is not well known. In this study, a gene encoding the fimbrial protein FlfA was identified in A. paragallinarum . Sequencing analysis of the putative promoter region of flfA suggests that flfA expression in A. paragallinarum might be controlled by phase variation. The flfA gene from A. paragallinarum was expressed as a recombinant protein (r-FlfA) in Escherichia coli . Immunization with r-FlfA conferred chickens protection against challenge infection with A. paragallinarum . Virulence assays showed that the flfA-deficient mutants of A. paragallinarum were less virulent than their parental wild-type strains. These results indicated that the fimbrial protein FlfA is a virulence factor and potential vaccine antigen from A. paragallinarum . PMID:27610725

  11. Model-driven mapping of transcriptional networks reveals the circuitry and dynamics of virulence regulation.

    PubMed

    Maier, Ezekiel J; Haynes, Brian C; Gish, Stacey R; Wang, Zhuo A; Skowyra, Michael L; Marulli, Alyssa L; Doering, Tamara L; Brent, Michael R

    2015-05-01

    Key steps in understanding a biological process include identifying genes that are involved and determining how they are regulated. We developed a novel method for identifying transcription factors (TFs) involved in a specific process and used it to map regulation of the key virulence factor of a deadly fungus-its capsule. The map, built from expression profiles of 41 TF mutants, includes 20 TFs not previously known to regulate virulence attributes. It also reveals a hierarchy comprising executive, midlevel, and "foreman" TFs. When grouped by temporal expression pattern, these TFs explain much of the transcriptional dynamics of capsule induction. Phenotypic analysis of TF deletion mutants revealed complex relationships among virulence factors and virulence in mice. These resources and analyses provide the first integrated, systems-level view of capsule regulation and biosynthesis. Our methods dramatically improve the efficiency with which transcriptional networks can be analyzed, making genomic approaches accessible to laboratories focused on specific physiological processes. PMID:25644834

  12. Model-driven mapping of transcriptional networks reveals the circuitry and dynamics of virulence regulation

    PubMed Central

    Maier, Ezekiel J.; Haynes, Brian C.; Gish, Stacey R.; Wang, Zhuo A.; Skowyra, Michael L.; Marulli, Alyssa L.; Doering, Tamara L.; Brent, Michael R.

    2015-01-01

    Key steps in understanding a biological process include identifying genes that are involved and determining how they are regulated. We developed a novel method for identifying transcription factors (TFs) involved in a specific process and used it to map regulation of the key virulence factor of a deadly fungus—its capsule. The map, built from expression profiles of 41 TF mutants, includes 20 TFs not previously known to regulate virulence attributes. It also reveals a hierarchy comprising executive, midlevel, and “foreman” TFs. When grouped by temporal expression pattern, these TFs explain much of the transcriptional dynamics of capsule induction. Phenotypic analysis of TF deletion mutants revealed complex relationships among virulence factors and virulence in mice. These resources and analyses provide the first integrated, systems-level view of capsule regulation and biosynthesis. Our methods dramatically improve the efficiency with which transcriptional networks can be analyzed, making genomic approaches accessible to laboratories focused on specific physiological processes. PMID:25644834

  13. Bacterial Mg2+ Homeostasis, Transport, and Virulence

    PubMed Central

    Hollands, Kerry; Kriner, Michelle A.; Lee, Eun-Jin; Park, Sun-Yang; Pontes, Mauricio H.

    2014-01-01

    Organisms must maintain physiological levels of Mg2+ because this divalent cation is critical for the stabilization of membranes and ribosomes, the neutralization of nucleic acids, and as a cofactor in a variety of enzymatic reactions. In this review, we describe the mechanisms that bacteria utilize to sense the levels of Mg2+ both outside and inside the cytoplasm. We examine how bacteria achieve Mg2+ homeostasis by adjusting the expression and activity of Mg2+ transporters, and by changing the composition of their cell envelope. We discuss the connections that exist between Mg2+ sensing, Mg2+ transport and bacterial virulence. Additionally, we explore the logic behind the fact that bacterial genomes encode multiple Mg2+ transporters and distinct sensing systems for cytoplasmic and extracytoplasmic Mg2+. These analyses may be applicable to the homeostatic control of other cations. PMID:24079267

  14. Virulence markers of opportunistic black yeast in Exophiala.

    PubMed

    Sav, Hafize; Ozakkas, Fatma; Altınbas, Rabiye; Kiraz, Nuri; Tümgör, Ayşegül; Gümral, Ramazan; Döğen, Aylin; Ilkit, Macit; de Hoog, G Sybren

    2016-06-01

    The black yeast genus Exophiala is known to cause a wide variety of diseases in severely ill individuals but can also affect immunocompetent individuals. Virulence markers and other physiological parameters were tested in eight clinical and 218 environmental strains, with a specific focus on human-dominated habitats for the latter. Urease and catalase were consistently present in all samples; four strains expressed proteinase and three strains expressed DNase, whereas none of the strains showed phospholipase, haemolysis, or co-haemolysis activities. Biofilm formation was identified in 30 (13.8%) of the environmental isolates, particularly in strains from dishwashers, and was noted in only two (25%) of the clinical strains. These results indicate that virulence factors are inconsistently present in the investigated Exophiala species, suggesting opportunism rather than pathogenicity. PMID:26857806

  15. Cupric yersiniabactin is a virulence-associated superoxide dismutase mimic.

    PubMed

    Chaturvedi, Kaveri S; Hung, Chia S; Giblin, Daryl E; Urushidani, Saki; Austin, Anthony M; Dinauer, Mary C; Henderson, Jeffrey P

    2014-02-21

    Many Gram-negative bacteria interact with extracellular metal ions by expressing one or more siderophore types. Among these, the virulence-associated siderophore yersiniabactin (Ybt) is an avid copper chelator, forming stable cupric (Cu(II)-Ybt) complexes that are detectable in infected patients. Here we show that Ybt-expressing E. coli are protected from intracellular killing within copper-replete phagocytic cells. This survival advantage is highly dependent upon the phagocyte respiratory burst, during which superoxide is generated by the NADPH oxidase complex. Chemical fractionation links this phenotype to a previously unappreciated superoxide dismutase (SOD)-like activity of Cu(II)-Ybt. Unlike previously described synthetic copper-salicylate (Cu(II)-SA) SOD mimics, the salicylate-based natural product Cu(II)-Ybt retains catalytic activity at physiologically plausible protein concentrations. These results reveal a new virulence-associated adaptation based upon spontaneous assembly of a non-protein catalyst. PMID:24283977

  16. Cupric Yersiniabactin Is a Virulence-Associated Superoxide Dismutase Mimic

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Many Gram-negative bacteria interact with extracellular metal ions by expressing one or more siderophore types. Among these, the virulence-associated siderophore yersiniabactin (Ybt) is an avid copper chelator, forming stable cupric (Cu(II)-Ybt) complexes that are detectable in infected patients. Here we show that Ybt-expressing E. coli are protected from intracellular killing within copper-replete phagocytic cells. This survival advantage is highly dependent upon the phagocyte respiratory burst, during which superoxide is generated by the NADPH oxidase complex. Chemical fractionation links this phenotype to a previously unappreciated superoxide dismutase (SOD)-like activity of Cu(II)-Ybt. Unlike previously described synthetic copper-salicylate (Cu(II)-SA) SOD mimics, the salicylate-based natural product Cu(II)-Ybt retains catalytic activity at physiologically plausible protein concentrations. These results reveal a new virulence-associated adaptation based upon spontaneous assembly of a non-protein catalyst. PMID:24283977

  17. Attenuation of virulence in an apicomplexan hemoparasite results in reduced genome diversity at the population level

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background Virulence acquisition and loss is a dynamic adaptation of pathogens to thrive in changing milieus. We investigated the mechanisms of virulence loss at the whole genome level using Babesia bovis as a model apicomplexan in which genetically related attenuated parasites can be reliably derived from virulent parental strains in the natural host. We expected virulence loss to be accompanied by consistent changes at the gene level, and that such changes would be shared among attenuated parasites of diverse geographic and genetic background. Results Surprisingly, while single nucleotide polymorphisms in 14 genes distinguished all attenuated parasites from their virulent parental strains, all non-synonymous changes resulted in no deleterious amino acid modification that could consistently be associated with attenuation (or virulence) in this hemoparasite. Interestingly, however, attenuation significantly reduced the overall population's genome diversity with 81% of base pairs shared among attenuated strains, compared to only 60% of base pairs common among virulent parental parasites. There were significantly fewer genes that were unique to their geographical origins among the attenuated parasites, resulting in a simplified population structure among the attenuated strains. Conclusions This simplified structure includes reduced diversity of the variant erythrocyte surface 1 (ves) multigene family repertoire among attenuated parasites when compared to virulent parental strains, possibly suggesting that overall variance in large protein families such as Variant Erythrocyte Surface Antigens has a critical role in expression of the virulence phenotype. In addition, the results suggest that virulence (or attenuation) mechanisms may not be shared among all populations of parasites at the gene level, but instead may reflect expansion or contraction of the population structure in response to shifting milieus. PMID:21838895

  18. Student Government.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Morrow, Joyce

    Materials for running a student government program at the junior high school level are provided in three general sections. Section 1 is a description of student government operations. Topics covered include student government responsibilities and activities, student council meeting procedures, parliamentary rules, responsibilities of the…

  19. [Virulence determinant of Chromobacterium violaceum].

    PubMed

    Miki, Tsuyoshi

    2014-01-01

    Chromobacterium violaceum is a Gram-negative bacterium that infects humans and animals with fatal sepsis. The infection with C. violaceum is rare in case of those who are healthy, but once established, C. violaceum causes sever disease accompanied by abscess formation in the lungs, liver and spleen. Furthermore, C. violaceum is resistant to a broad range of antibiotics, which in some cases renders the antimicrobial therapy for this infection difficult. Thus, the infection with C. violaceum displays high mortality rates unless initial proper antimicrobial therapy. In contrast, the infection mechanism had completely remained unknown. To this end, we have tried to identify virulence factors-associated with C. violaceum infection. Two distinct type III secretion systems (TTSSs) were thought to be one of the most important virulence factors, which are encoded by Chromobacterium pathogenicity island 1/1a and 2 (Cpi-1/-1a and -2) respectively. Our results have shown that Cpi-1/-1a-encoded TTSS, but not Cpi-2, is indispensable for the virulence in a mouse infection model. C. violaceum caused fulminant hepatitis in a Cpi-1/-1a-encoded TTSS-dependent manner. We next have identified 16 novel effectors secreted from Cpi-1/-1a-encoded TTS machinery. From these effectors, we found that CopE (Chromobacterium outer protein E) has similarities to a guanine nucleotide exchange factor (GEF) for Rho GTPases. CopE acts as GEF for Rac1 and Cdc42, leading to induction of actin cytoskeletal rearrangement. Interestingly, C. violaceum invades cultured human epithelial cells in a CopE-dependent manner. Finally, an inactivation of CopE by disruption of copE gene or amino acid point mutation leading to loss of GEF activity attenuates significantly the mouse virulence of C. violaceum. These results suggest that Cpi-1/-1a-encoded TTSS is a major virulence determinant for C. violaceum infection, and that CopE contributes to the virulence in part of this pathogen. PMID:25447983

  20. A virulent vasculopathy.

    PubMed

    Molloy, A; Forde, D; De Gascun, C; Fanning, N; Wyse, G; O'Toole, O

    2011-01-01

    Arteriopathy is an uncommon complication of primary varicella zoster virus (VZV) infection in the immunocompetent adult. We report a case of a 39-year-old woman known to be VZV negative prior to the event. She presented to the emergency department having experienced an episode of expressive aphasia and right upper limb paraesthesia lasting 15 min. The symptoms followed a 3-day period of general malaise, arthralgia and a generalised maculopapular itchy rash involving face and limbs. No immunocompromise was detected but an infectious contact was identified in the home. Imaging findings were consistent with a focal cerebritis/vasculopathy and VZV infection was confirmed with cerebrospinal fluid PCR analysis. Resolution of radiological signs occurred following prompt treatment with appropriate antivirals. PMID:22700078

  1. A virulent vasculopathy

    PubMed Central

    Molloy, A; Forde, D; De Gascun, C; Fanning, N; Wyse, G; O’Toole, O

    2011-01-01

    Arteriopathy is an uncommon complication of primary varicella zoster virus (VZV) infection in the immunocompetent adult. We report a case of a 39-year-old woman known to be VZV negative prior to the event. She presented to the emergency department having experienced an episode of expressive aphasia and right upper limb paraesthesia lasting 15 min. The symptoms followed a 3-day period of general malaise, arthralgia and a generalised maculopapular itchy rash involving face and limbs. No immunocompromise was detected but an infectious contact was identified in the home. Imaging findings were consistent with a focal cerebritis/vasculopathy and VZV infection was confirmed with cerebrospinal fluid PCR analysis. Resolution of radiological signs occurred following prompt treatment with appropriate antivirals. PMID:22700078

  2. Pathogenomic Inference of Virulence-Associated Genes in Leptospira interrogans

    PubMed Central

    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. PMID:24098822

  3. Sortase A promotes virulence in experimental Staphylococcus lugdunensis endocarditis.

    PubMed

    Heilbronner, Simon; Hanses, Frank; Monk, Ian R; Speziale, Pietro; Foster, Timothy J

    2013-10-01

    Staphylococcus lugdunensis is a commensal of humans and an opportunistic pathogen. It can cause an aggressive form of infective endocarditis in healthy humans akin to Staphylococcus aureus. Here we compared the virulence of the genome-sequenced S. lugdunensis strain N920143 to S. aureus in an experimental rat endocarditis model. N920143 caused a milder course of disease with lower levels of bacteraemia and smaller endocardial vegetations than S. aureus strain Newman. However, vegetations were comparable to those produced by S. aureus MRSA strain COL. Little is known about virulence factors of S. lugdunensis as systems to manipulate the bacterium genetically are currently limited. Here, we report a method for electroporation of S. lugdunensis with plasmid DNA and demonstrate that the low efficiency of transformation is due to the activity of a conserved type I restriction-modification system. To streamline the transformation process, we constructed SL01B, an E. coli strain expressing the hsdM/hsdS genes of N920143. Modified plasmid DNA isolated from SL01B transformed S. lugdunensis strains from clonal complexes 1 and 2 efficiently. A deletion mutant of N920143 lacking sortase A was significantly less virulent than the wild-type in the endocarditis model. Mutants defective in single surface proteins Fbl or vWbl were not significantly different from the wild-type but showed trends towards reduced virulence. PMID:23943787

  4. Engineering Attenuated Virulence of a Theileria annulata–Infected Macrophage

    PubMed Central

    Echebli, Nadia; Mhadhbi, Moez; Chaussepied, Marie; Vayssettes, Catherine; Di Santo, James P.; Darghouth, Mohamed Aziz; Langsley, Gordon

    2014-01-01

    Live attenuated vaccines are used to combat tropical theileriosis in North Africa, the Middle East, India, and China. The attenuation process is empirical and occurs only after many months, sometimes years, of in vitro culture of virulent clinical isolates. During this extensive culturing, attenuated lines lose their vaccine potential. To circumvent this we engineered the rapid ablation of the host cell transcription factor c-Jun, and within only 3 weeks the line engineered for loss of c-Jun activation displayed in vitro correlates of attenuation such as loss of adhesion, reduced MMP9 gelatinase activity, and diminished capacity to traverse Matrigel. Specific ablation of a single infected host cell virulence trait (c-Jun) induced a complete failure of Theileria annulata–transformed macrophages to disseminate, whereas virulent macrophages disseminated to the kidneys, spleen, and lungs of Rag2/γC mice. Thus, in this heterologous mouse model loss of c-Jun expression led to ablation of dissemination of T. annulata–infected and transformed macrophages. The generation of Theileria-infected macrophages genetically engineered for ablation of a specific host cell virulence trait now makes possible experimental vaccination of calves to address how loss of macrophage dissemination impacts the disease pathology of tropical theileriosis. PMID:25375322

  5. Gallium induces the production of virulence factors in Pseudomonas aeruginosa.

    PubMed

    García-Contreras, Rodolfo; Pérez-Eretza, Berenice; Lira-Silva, Elizabeth; Jasso-Chávez, Ricardo; Coria-Jiménez, Rafael; Rangel-Vega, Adrián; Maeda, Toshinari; Wood, Thomas K

    2014-02-01

    The novel antimicrobial gallium is a nonredox iron III analogue with bacteriostatic and bactericidal properties, effective for the treatment of Pseudomonas aeruginosa in vitro and in vivo in mouse and rabbit infection models. It interferes with iron metabolism, transport, and presumably its homeostasis. As gallium exerts its antimicrobial effects by competing with iron, we hypothesized that it ultimately will lead cells to an iron deficiency status. As iron deficiency promotes the expression of virulence factors in vitro and promotes the pathogenicity of P. aeruginosa in animal models, it is anticipated that treatment with gallium will also promote the production of virulence factors. To test this hypothesis, the reference strain PA14 and two clinical isolates from patients with cystic fibrosis were exposed to gallium, and their production of pyocyanin, rhamnolipids, elastase, alkaline protease, alginate, pyoverdine, and biofilm was determined. Gallium treatment induced the production of all the virulence factors tested in the three strains except for pyoverdine. In addition, as the Ga-induced virulence factors are quorum sensing controlled, co-administration of Ga and the quorum quencher brominated furanone C-30 was assayed, and it was found that C-30 alleviated growth inhibition from gallium. Hence, adding both C-30 and gallium may be more effective in the treatment of P. aeruginosa infections. PMID:24151196

  6. A dynamic and intricate regulatory network determines Pseudomonas aeruginosa virulence

    PubMed Central

    Balasubramanian, Deepak; Schneper, Lisa; Kumari, Hansi; Mathee, Kalai

    2013-01-01

    Pseudomonas aeruginosa is a metabolically versatile bacterium that is found in a wide range of biotic and abiotic habitats. It is a major human opportunistic pathogen causing numerous acute and chronic infections. The critical traits contributing to the pathogenic potential of P. aeruginosa are the production of a myriad of virulence factors, formation of biofilms and antibiotic resistance. Expression of these traits is under stringent regulation, and it responds to largely unidentified environmental signals. This review is focused on providing a global picture of virulence gene regulation in P. aeruginosa. In addition to key regulatory pathways that control the transition from acute to chronic infection phenotypes, some regulators have been identified that modulate multiple virulence mechanisms. Despite of a propensity for chaotic behaviour, no chaotic motifs were readily observed in the P. aeruginosa virulence regulatory network. Having a ‘birds-eye’ view of the regulatory cascades provides the forum opportunities to pose questions, formulate hypotheses and evaluate theories in elucidating P. aeruginosa pathogenesis. Understanding the mechanisms involved in making P. aeruginosa a successful pathogen is essential in helping devise control strategies. PMID:23143271

  7. Metabolism and Virulence Strategies in Dickeya-Host Interactions.

    PubMed

    Hugouvieux-Cotte-Pattat, N

    2016-01-01

    Dickeya, a genus of the Enterobacteriaceae family, all cause plant diseases. They are aggressive necrotrophs that have both a wide geographic distribution and a wide host range. As a plant pathogen, Dickeya has had to adapt to a vegetarian diet. Plants constitute a large storage of carbohydrates; they contain substantial amounts of soluble sugars and the plant cell wall is composed of long polysaccharides. Metabolic functions used by Dickeya in order to multiply during infection are essential aspects of pathogenesis. Dickeya is able to catabolize a large range of oligosaccharides and glycosides of plant origin. Glucose, fructose, and sucrose are all efficiently metabolized by the bacteria. To avoid the formation of acidic products, their final catabolism involves the butanediol pathway, a nonacidifying fermentative pathway. The assimilation of plant polysaccharides necessitates their prior cleavage into oligomers. Notably, the Dickeya virulence strategy is based on its capacity to dissociate the plant cell wall and, for this, the bacteria secrete an extensive set of polysaccharide degrading enzymes, composed mostly of pectinases. Since pectic polymers have a major role in plant tissue cohesion, pectinase action results in plant rot. The pectate lyases secreted by Dickeya play a double role as virulence factors and as nutrient providers. This dual function implies that the pel gene expression is regulated by both metabolic and virulence regulators. The control of sugar assimilation by specific or global regulators enables Dickeya to link its nutritional status to virulence, a coupling that optimizes the different phases of infection. PMID:27571693

  8. Virulence characteristics of oral treponemes in a murine model.

    PubMed Central

    Kesavalu, L; Walker, S G; Holt, S C; Crawley, R R; Ebersole, J L

    1997-01-01

    This study was designed to investigate the virulence characteristics of Treponema denticola, T. socranskii, T. pectinovorum, and T. vincentii following challenge infection of mice. These microorganisms induced well-demarcated, dose-dependent, raised subcutaneous (s.c.) abscesses which were similar in time of onset, lesion progression, and duration of healing. Only viable cells were capable of inducing these characteristic s.c. abscesses. Histological examination of the skin lesion 3 and 5 days postinfection revealed abscess formation in the s.c. tissues, and abundant spiral organisms were demonstrated to be present in the abscess. Host resistance modulation by dexamethasone (neutrophil alteration) and cyclophosphamide (neutrophil depletion) pretreatment had a minimal effect on the virulence expression by any of these treponemes. The T. denticola isolates demonstrated significant trypsin-like protease (TLPase) activity, while both T. socranskii and T. vincentii were devoid of this activity. Interestingly, T. pectinovorum strains were heterogeneous with respect to TLPase as high producers, low producers, and nonproducers. However, no differences in lesion formation were noted regardless of whether the species expressed this proteolytic activity or whether treatment with N alpha-p-tosyl-L-lysine chloromethyl ketone (TLCK) and dithiothreitol was performed. These results showed that (i) a murine model may be used to evaluate virulence expression by oral treponemes; (ii) while TLPase activity varies among the oral treponemes, this protease does not appear to participate in abscess induction in the mouse model; and (iii) T. pectinovorum strains show variation in TLPase activity. PMID:9393801

  9. Surface attachment induces Pseudomonas aeruginosa virulence

    PubMed Central

    Siryaporn, Albert; Kuchma, Sherry L.; O’Toole, George A.; Gitai, Zemer

    2014-01-01

    Pseudomonas aeruginosa infects every type of host that has been examined by deploying multiple virulence factors. Previous studies of virulence regulation have largely focused on chemical cues, but P. aeruginosa may also respond to mechanical cues. Using a rapid imaging-based virulence assay, we demonstrate that P. aeruginosa activates virulence in response to attachment to a range of chemically distinct surfaces, suggesting that this bacterial species responds to mechanical properties of its substrates. Surface-activated virulence requires quorum sensing, but activating quorum sensing does not induce virulence without surface attachment. The activation of virulence by surfaces also requires the surface-exposed protein PilY1, which has a domain homologous to a eukaryotic mechanosensor. Specific mutation of the putative PilY1 mechanosensory domain is sufficient to induce virulence in non–surface-attached cells, suggesting that PilY1 mediates surface mechanotransduction. Triggering virulence only when cells are both at high density and attached to a surface—two host-nonspecific cues—explains how P. aeruginosa precisely regulates virulence while maintaining broad host specificity. PMID:25385640

  10. Salmonella-secreted Virulence Factors

    SciTech Connect

    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.

  11. Systematic analysis of cyclic di-GMP signaling enzymes and their role in biofilm formation and virulence in Yersinia pestis

    PubMed Central

    Bobrov, Alexander G.; Kirillina, Olga; Ryjenkov, Dmitri A.; Waters, Christopher M.; Price, Paul A.; Fetherston, Jacqueline D.; Mack, Dietrich; Goldman, William E.; Gomelsky, Mark; Perry, Robert D.

    2011-01-01

    Cyclic di-GMP (c-di-GMP) is a signaling molecule that governs the transition between planktonic and biofilm states. Previously we showed that the diguanylate cyclase HmsT and the putative c-di-GMP phosphodiesterase HmsP inversely regulate biofilm formation through control of HmsHFRS-dependent poly-β-1,6-N-acetylglucosamine synthesis. Here, we systematically examine the functionality of the genes encoding putative c-di-GMP metabolic enzymes in Yersinia pestis. We determine that, in addition to hmsT and hmsP, only the gene y3730 encodes a functional enzyme capable of synthesizing c-di-GMP. The seven remaining genes are pseudogenes or encode proteins that do not function catalytically or are not expressed. Furthermore, we show that HmsP has c-di-GMP-specific phosphodiesterase activity. We report that a mutant incapable of c-di-GMP synthesis is unaffected in virulence in plague mouse models. Conversely, an hmsP mutant, unable to degrade c-di-GMP, is defective in virulence by a subcutaneous route of infection due to poly-β-1,6-N-acetylglucosamine overproduction. This suggests that c-di-GMP signaling is not only dispensable but deleterious for Y. pestis virulence. Our results show that a key event in the evolution of Y. pestis from the ancestral Yersinia pseudotuberculosis was a significant reduction in the complexity of its c-di-GMP signaling network likely resulting from the different disease cycles of these human pathogens. PMID:21219468

  12. Csr1/Zap1 Maintains Zinc Homeostasis and Influences Virulence in Candida dubliniensis but Is Not Coupled to Morphogenesis

    PubMed Central

    Böttcher, Bettina; Palige, Katja; Jacobsen, Ilse D.; Hube, Bernhard

    2015-01-01

    The supply and intracellular homeostasis of trace metals are essential for every living organism. Therefore, the struggle for micronutrients between a pathogen and its host is an important determinant in the infection process. In this work, we focus on the acquisition of zinc by Candida dubliniensis, an emerging pathogen closely related to Candida albicans. We show that the transcription factor Csr1 is essential for C. dubliniensis to regulate zinc uptake mechanisms under zinc limitation: it governs the expression of the zinc transporter genes ZRT1, ZRT2, and ZRT3 and of the zincophore gene PRA1. Exclusively, artificial overexpression of ZRT2 partially rescued the growth defect of a csr1Δ/Δ mutant in a zinc-restricted environment. Importantly, we found that, in contrast to what is seen in C. albicans, Csr1 (also called Zap1) is not a major regulator of dimorphism in C. dubliniensis. However, although a csr1Δ/Δ strain showed normal germ tube formation, we detected a clear attenuation in virulence using an embryonated chicken egg infection model. We conclude that, unlike in C. albicans, Csr1 seems to be a virulence factor of C. dubliniensis that is not coupled to filamentation but is strongly linked to zinc acquisition during pathogenesis. PMID:26002718

  13. Csr1/Zap1 Maintains Zinc Homeostasis and Influences Virulence in Candida dubliniensis but Is Not Coupled to Morphogenesis.

    PubMed

    Böttcher, Bettina; Palige, Katja; Jacobsen, Ilse D; Hube, Bernhard; Brunke, Sascha

    2015-07-01

    The supply and intracellular homeostasis of trace metals are essential for every living organism. Therefore, the struggle for micronutrients between a pathogen and its host is an important determinant in the infection process. In this work, we focus on the acquisition of zinc by Candida dubliniensis, an emerging pathogen closely related to Candida albicans. We show that the transcription factor Csr1 is essential for C. dubliniensis to regulate zinc uptake mechanisms under zinc limitation: it governs the expression of the zinc transporter genes ZRT1, ZRT2, and ZRT3 and of the zincophore gene PRA1. Exclusively, artificial overexpression of ZRT2 partially rescued the growth defect of a csr1Δ/Δ mutant in a zinc-restricted environment. Importantly, we found that, in contrast to what is seen in C. albicans, Csr1 (also called Zap1) is not a major regulator of dimorphism in C. dubliniensis. However, although a csr1Δ/Δ strain showed normal germ tube formation, we detected a clear attenuation in virulence using an embryonated chicken egg infection model. We conclude that, unlike in C. albicans, Csr1 seems to be a virulence factor of C. dubliniensis that is not coupled to filamentation but is strongly linked to zinc acquisition during pathogenesis. PMID:26002718

  14. Cyclic di-GMP signalling in the virulence and environmental adaptation of Xanthomonas campestris.

    PubMed

    Ryan, Robert P; Fouhy, Yvonne; Lucey, Jean F; Jiang, Bo-Le; He, Yong-Qiang; Feng, Jia-Xun; Tang, Ji-Liang; Dow, J Maxwell

    2007-01-01

    Cyclic di-GMP is a second messenger with a role in regulation of a range of cellular functions in diverse bacteria including the virulence of pathogens. Cellular levels of cyclic di-GMP are controlled through synthesis, catalysed by the GGDEF protein domain, and degradation by EAL or HD-GYP domains. Here we report a comprehensive study of cyclic di-GMP signalling in bacterial disease in which we examine the contribution of all proteins with GGDEF, EAL or HD-GYP domains to virulence and virulence factor production in the phytopathogen Xanthomonas campestris pathovar campestris (Xcc). Genes with significant roles in virulence to plants included those encoding proteins whose probable function is in cyclic-di-GMP synthesis as well as others (including the HD-GYP domain regulator RpfG) implicated in cyclic di-GMP degradation. Furthermore, RpfG controlled expression of a subset of these genes. A partially overlapping set of elements controlled the production of virulence factors in vitro. Other GGDEF-EAL domain proteins had no effect on virulence factor synthesis but did influence motility. These findings indicate the existence of a regulatory network that may allow Xcc to integrate information from diverse environmental inputs to modulate virulence factor synthesis as well as of cyclic di-GMP signalling systems dedicated to other specific tasks. PMID:17241199

  15. Virulence determinants associated with the Asian community-associated methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus lineage ST59

    PubMed Central

    Li, Min; Dai, Yingxin; Zhu, Yuanjun; Fu, Chih-Lung; Tan, Vee Y.; Wang, Yanan; Wang, Xing; Hong, Xufen; Liu, Qian; Li, Tianming; Qin, Juanxiu; Ma, Xiaowei; Fang, Jingyuan; Otto, Michael

    2016-01-01

    Understanding virulence is vital for the development of novel therapeutics to target infections with community-associated methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (CA-MRSA), which cause an ongoing epidemic in the United States and are on a global rise. However, what defines virulence particularly of global CA-MRSA lineages is poorly understood. Threatening a vast population, the predominant Asian CA-MRSA lineage ST59 is of major epidemiological importance. However, there have been no molecular analyses using defined virulence gene deletion mutants in that lineage as of yet. Here, we compared virulence in skin, lung, and blood infection models of ST59 CA-MRSA isolates with geographically matched hospital-associated MRSA isolates. We selected a representative ST59 CA-MRSA isolate based on toxin expression and virulence characteristics, and produced isogenic gene deletion mutants of important CA-MRSA virulence determinants (α-toxin, PSM α, Agr) in that isolate for in-vitro and in-vivo analyses. Our results demonstrate strongly enhanced virulence of ST59 CA-MRSA over hospital-associated lineages, supporting the notion that enhanced virulence is characteristic for CA-MRSA. Furthermore, they show strong and significant contribution of Agr, α-toxin, and PSMα to pathogenesis of ST59 CA-MRSA skin, lung, and blood infection, emphasizing the value of drug development efforts targeted toward those virulence determinants. PMID:27296890

  16. Inhibition of virulence potential of Vibrio cholerae by natural compounds

    PubMed Central

    Yamasaki, Shinji; Asakura, Masahiro; Neogi, Sucharit Basu; Hinenoya, Atsushi; Iwaoka, Emiko; Aoki, Shunji

    2011-01-01

    The rise in multi-drug resistant Vibrio cholerae strains is a big problem in treatment of patients suffering from severe cholera. Only a few studies have evaluated the potential of natural compounds against V. cholerae. Extracts from plants like ‘neem’, ‘guazuma’, ‘daio’, apple, hop, green tea and elephant garlic have been shown to inhibit bacterial growth or the secreted cholera toxin (CT). However, inhibiting bacterial growth like common antimicrobial agents may also impose selective pressure facilitating development of resistant strains. A natural compound that can inhibit virulence in V. cholerae is an alternative choice for remedy. Recently, some common spices were examined to check their inhibitory capacity against virulence expression of V. cholerae. Among them methanol extracts of red chili, sweet fennel and white pepper could substantially inhibit CT production. Fractionation of red chili methanol extracts indicated a hydrophobic nature of the inhibitory compound(s), and the n-hexane and 90 per cent methanol fractions could inhibit >90 per cent of CT production. Purification and further fractionation revealed that capsaicin is one of the major components among these red chili fractions. Indeed, capsaicin inhibited the production of CT in various V. cholerae strains regardless of serogroups and biotypes. The quantitative reverse transcription real-time PCR assay revealed that capsaicin dramatically reduced the expression of major virulence-related genes such as ctxA, tcpA and toxT but enhanced the expression of hns gene that transcribes a global prokaryotic gene regulator (H-NS). This indicates that the repression of CT production by capsaicin or red chili might be due to the repression of virulence genes transcription by H-NS. Regular intake of spices like red chili might be a good approach to fight against devastating cholera. PMID:21415500

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2011-01-01

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

  18. PSM-Mec-A Virulence Determinant that Connects Transcriptional Regulation, Virulence, and Antibiotic Resistance in Staphylococci.

    PubMed

    Qin, Li; McCausland, Joshua W; Cheung, Gordon Y C; Otto, Michael

    2016-01-01

    PSM-mec is a secreted virulence factor that belongs to the phenol-soluble modulin (PSM) family of amphipathic, alpha-helical peptide toxins produced by Staphylococcus species. All known PSMs are core genome-encoded with the exception of PSM-mec, whose gene is found in specific sub-types of SCCmec methicillin resistance mobile genetic elements present in methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus and coagulase-negative staphylococci. In addition to the cytolytic translational product, PSM-mec, the psm-mec locus encodes a regulatory RNA. In S. aureus, the psm-mec locus influences cytolytic capacity, methicillin resistance, biofilm formation, cell spreading, and the expression of other virulence factors, such as other PSMs, which results in a significant impact on immune evasion and disease. However, these effects are highly strain-dependent, which is possibly due to differences in PSM-mec peptide vs. psm-mec RNA-controlled effects. Here, we summarize the functional properties of PSM-mec and the psm-mec RNA molecule and their roles in staphylococcal pathogenesis and physiology. PMID:27597849

  19. PSM-Mec—A Virulence Determinant that Connects Transcriptional Regulation, Virulence, and Antibiotic Resistance in Staphylococci

    PubMed Central

    Qin, Li; McCausland, Joshua W.; Cheung, Gordon Y. C.; Otto, Michael

    2016-01-01

    PSM-mec is a secreted virulence factor that belongs to the phenol-soluble modulin (PSM) family of amphipathic, alpha-helical peptide toxins produced by Staphylococcus species. All known PSMs are core genome-encoded with the exception of PSM-mec, whose gene is found in specific sub-types of SCCmec methicillin resistance mobile genetic elements present in methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus and coagulase-negative staphylococci. In addition to the cytolytic translational product, PSM-mec, the psm-mec locus encodes a regulatory RNA. In S. aureus, the psm-mec locus influences cytolytic capacity, methicillin resistance, biofilm formation, cell spreading, and the expression of other virulence factors, such as other PSMs, which results in a significant impact on immune evasion and disease. However, these effects are highly strain-dependent, which is possibly due to differences in PSM-mec peptide vs. psm-mec RNA-controlled effects. Here, we summarize the functional properties of PSM-mec and the psm-mec RNA molecule and their roles in staphylococcal pathogenesis and physiology. PMID:27597849

  20. Salmonella plasmid virulence gene spvB enhances bacterial virulence by inhibiting autophagy in a zebrafish infection model.

    PubMed

    Li, Yuan-Yuan; Wang, Ting; Gao, Song; Xu, Guang-Mei; Niu, Hua; Huang, Rui; Wu, Shu-Yan

    2016-02-01

    Salmonella enterica serovar typhimurium (S. typhimurium) is a facultative intracellular pathogen that can cause gastroenteritis and systemic infection in a wide range of hosts. Salmonella plasmid virulence gene spvB is closely related to bacterial virulence in different cells and animal models, and the encoded protein acts as an intracellular toxin required for ADP-ribosyl transferase activity. However, until now there is no report about the pathogenecity of spvB gene on zebrafish. Due to the outstanding advantages of zebrafish in analyzing bacteria-host interactions, a S. typhimurium infected zebrafish model was set up here to study the effect of spvB on autophagy and intestinal pathogenesis in vivo. We found that spvB gene could decrease the LD50 of S. typhimurium, and the strain carrying spvB promoted bacterial proliferation and aggravated the intestinal damage manifested by the narrowed intestines, fallen microvilli, blurred epithelium cell structure and infiltration of inflammatory cells. Results demonstrated the enhanced virulence induced by spvB in zebrafish. In spvB-mutant strain infected zebrafish, the levels of Lc3 turnover and Beclin1 expression increased, and the double-membraned autophagosome structures were observed, suggesting that spvB can inhibit autophagy activity. In summary, our results indicate that S. typhimurium strain containing spvB displays more virulence, triggering an increase in bacterial survival and intestine injuries by suppressing autophagy for the first time. This model provides novel insights into the role of Salmonella plasmid virulence gene in bacterial pathogenesis, and can help to further elucidate the relationship between bacteria and host immune response. PMID:26723267

  1. Production of virulence factors in Candida strains isolated from patients with denture stomatitis and control individuals.

    PubMed

    Pereira, Cristiane Aparecida; Domingues, Nádia; Araújo, Maria Izabel Daniel Santos Alves; Junqueira, Juliana Campos; Back-Brito, Graziella Nuernberg; Jorge, Antonio Olavo Cardoso

    2016-05-01

    The aim of this study was to evaluate the production of virulence factors in Candida isolates from the oral cavities of 50 patients with different degrees of denture stomatitis (DS, type I, II and III) and 50 individuals without signs of DS. We evaluated the enzymatic and hemolytic activities, the biofilm formation, and the cell surface hydrophobicity (CSH) in all isolates. Germ tube (GT) production was also evaluated in Candida albicans and Candida dubliniensis isolates. In C. albicans and C. dubliniensis the secretion of hemolysin and GT production was significantly different between isolates from patients with DS and individuals without DS. No significant difference was observed in the production of virulence factors by Candida glabrata isolates. Candida isolates expressed a wide range of virulence factors. However, in the majority of isolates from the type III lesions, the production of the virulence factors was higher than for the other groups. PMID:26971635

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    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.

  3. Analysis of Pdeudomonas aeruginosa Growth and Virulence in Modelled Microgravity

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Guadarrama, Seratna; deL. Pulcini, Elinor; Broadaway, Susan C.; Pyle, Barry H.

    2005-01-01

    Stress, radiation and microgravity cause astronauts to experience secondary immunosuppression. Spaceflight conditions enhance bacterial growth and alter antimicrobial susceptibility. Clinostats are used to model microgravity effects at lxg. In controls rotated on the vertical axis, the g-vector acts on cells as in static cultures. Salmonella enterica serovar Typhimurium virulence genes are up-regulated in modelled microgravity (MMG); a MMG regulon has been postulated. We hypothesize that the virulence of P. aeruginosa (PA) may be affected similarly by microgravity, which could be observed in MMG. This study focused on regulation of the ETA protein by PA during growth in MMG. PA103 was grown in an ETA production medium at 37 C. One series of media was inoculated with frozen cultures and grown using horizontal (MMG) or static incubation. Another series inoculated with refrigerated cultures included vertical rotating controls. Analyses included optical density (OD), agar plate counts (PC) on R2A, ETA ELISA, and protein expression by 2-D gel analyses. Growth and ETA results differed depending on inoculum, with minor effects of MMG. Proteomic analysis of 2-D gels indicate differences in protein expression with MMG. Growth and ETA results show that consistent methodology is critical when studying environmental effects. This study provides information on the relationships between environmental changes and virulence regulation, especially for flight experiments, when ground experiments are used to predict potential spaceflight effects.

  4. Intracellular Action of a Secreted Peptide Required for Fungal Virulence.

    PubMed

    Homer, Christina M; Summers, Diana K; Goranov, Alexi I; Clarke, Starlynn C; Wiesner, Darin L; Diedrich, Jolene K; Moresco, James J; Toffaletti, Dena; Upadhya, Rajendra; Caradonna, Ippolito; Petnic, Sarah; Pessino, Veronica; Cuomo, Christina A; Lodge, Jennifer K; Perfect, John; Yates, John R; Nielsen, Kirsten; Craik, Charles S; Madhani, Hiten D

    2016-06-01

    Quorum sensing (QS) is a bacterial communication mechanism in which secreted signaling molecules impact population function and gene expression. QS-like phenomena have been reported in eukaryotes with largely unknown contributing molecules, functions, and mechanisms. We identify Qsp1, a secreted peptide, as a central signaling molecule that regulates virulence in the fungal pathogen Cryptococcus neoformans. QSP1 is a direct target of three transcription factors required for virulence, and qsp1Δ mutants exhibit attenuated infection, slowed tissue accumulation, and greater control by primary macrophages. Qsp1 mediates autoregulatory signaling that modulates secreted protease activity and promotes cell wall function at high cell densities. Peptide production requires release from a secreted precursor, proQsp1, by a cell-associated protease, Pqp1. Qsp1 sensing requires an oligopeptide transporter, Opt1, and remarkably, cytoplasmic expression of mature Qsp1 complements multiple phenotypes of qsp1Δ. Thus, C. neoformans produces an autoregulatory peptide that matures extracellularly but functions intracellularly to regulate virulence. PMID:27212659

  5. Remaking Governance.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Carver, John

    2000-01-01

    The Policy Governance model's philosophical foundations lie in Rousseau's social contract, Greenleaf's servant-leadership, and modern management theory. Policy Governance stresses primacy of the owner-representative role; full-board authority; superintendents as chief executive officers; authoritative prescription of "ends," bounded freedom for…

  6. Reinventing Government.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Osborne, David T.

    1993-01-01

    Throughout all levels of American government, a shift is taking place from the rigid, wasteful, centralized bureaucracies of the industrial era to the more flexible, entrepreneurial, decentralized government needed to succeed in today's world. This shift has been brought about by an unprecedented, ongoing fiscal crisis that has created a sudden…

  7. Virulence Mechanisms and Cryptococcus neoformans pathogenesis”

    PubMed Central

    Alspaugh, J. Andrew

    2014-01-01

    The human fungal pathogen Cryptococcus neoformans is able to rapidly and effectively adapt to varying conditions, favoring its survival in the environment and in the infected host. Many microbial phenotypes have been specifically correlated with virulence in this opportunistic pathogen, such as capsule production, melanin formation, and the secretion of various proteins. Additionally, cellular features such as the cell wall and morphogenesis play important roles in the interaction of this fungus with host immune recognition and response pathways. Survival in the face of host stress also requires maintaining RNA/DNA integrity. Additionally, aging and senescence of the fungal cells determines resistance to host-derived stresses. New mechanisms regulating the expression of these virulence-associated phenotypes have been recently explored. Importantly, human clinical studies are now confirming the roles of specific microbial factors in human infections. PMID:25256589

  8. Down regulation of virulence factors of Pseudomonas aeruginosa by salicylic acid attenuates its virulence on Arabidopsis thaliana and Caenorhabditis elegans.

    PubMed

    Prithiviraj, B; Bais, H P; Weir, T; Suresh, B; Najarro, E H; Dayakar, B V; Schweizer, H P; Vivanco, J M

    2005-09-01

    Salicylic acid (SA) is a phenolic metabolite produced by plants and is known to play an important role in several physiological processes, such as the induction of plant defense responses against pathogen attack. Here, using the Arabidopsis thaliana-Pseudomonas aeruginosa pathosystem, we provide evidence that SA acts directly on the pathogen, down regulating fitness and virulence factor production of the bacteria. Pseudomonas aeruginosa PA14 showed reduced attachment and biofilm formation on the roots of the Arabidopsis mutants lox2 and cpr5-2, which produce elevated amounts of SA, as well as on wild-type Arabidopsis plants primed with exogenous SA, a treatment known to enhance endogenous SA concentration. Salicylic acid at a concentration that did not inhibit PA14 growth was sufficient to significantly affect the ability of the bacteria to attach and form biofilm communities on abiotic surfaces. Furthermore, SA down regulated three known virulence factors of PA14: pyocyanin, protease, and elastase. Interestingly, P. aeruginosa produced more pyocyanin when infiltrated into leaves of the Arabidopsis transgenic line NahG, which accumulates less SA than wild-type plants. This finding suggests that endogenous SA plays a role in down regulating the synthesis and secretion of pyocyanin in vivo. To further test if SA directly affects the virulence of P. aeruginosa, we used the Caenorhabditis elegans-P. aeruginosa infection model. The addition of SA to P. aeruginosa lawns significantly diminished the bacterium's ability to kill the worms, without affecting the accumulation of bacteria inside the nematodes' guts, suggesting that SA negatively affects factors that influence the virulence of P. aeruginosa. We employed microarray technology to identify SA target genes. These analyses showed that SA treatment affected expression of 331 genes. It selectively repressed transcription of exoproteins and other virulence factors, while it had no effect on expression of housekeeping

  9. The Vibrio campbellii quorum sensing signals have a different impact on virulence of the bacterium towards different crustacean hosts.

    PubMed

    Pande, Gde Sasmita Julyantoro; Natrah, Fatin Mohd Ikhsan; Sorgeloos, Patrick; Bossier, Peter; Defoirdt, Tom

    2013-12-27

    Pathogenic bacteria communicate with small signal molecules in a process called quorum sensing, and they often use different signal molecules to regulate virulence gene expression. Vibrio campbellii, one of the major pathogens of aquatic organisms, regulates virulence gene expression by a three channel quorum sensing system. Here we show that although they use a common signal transduction cascade, the signal molecules have a different impact on the virulence of the bacterium towards different hosts, i.e. the brine shrimp Artemia franciscana and the commercially important giant freshwater prawn Macrobrachium rosenbergii. These results suggest that the use of multiple types of signal molecules to regulate virulence gene expression is one of the features that allow bacteria to infect different hosts. Our findings emphasize that it is highly important to study the efficacy of quorum sensing inhibitors as novel biocontrol agents under conditions that are as close as possible to the clinical situation. PMID:24055027

  10. Renewing governance.

    PubMed

    Loos, Gregory P

    2003-01-01

    Globalization's profound influence on social and political institutions need not be negative. Critics of globalization have often referred to the "Impossible Trinity" because decision-making must 1. respect national sovereignty, 2. develop and implement firm regulation, and 3. allow capital markets to be as free as possible. To many, such goals are mutually exclusive because history conditions us to view policy-making and governance in traditional molds. Thus, transnational governance merely appears impossible because current forms of governance were not designed to provide it. The world needs new tools for governing, and its citizens must seize the opportunity to help develop them. The rise of a global society requires a greater level of generality and inclusion than is found in most policy bodies today. Politicians need to re-examine key assumptions about government. States must develop ways to discharge their regulatory responsibilities across borders and collaborate with neighboring jurisdictions, multilateral bodies, and business. Concepts such as multilateralism and tripartism show great promise. Governments must engage civil society in the spirit of shared responsibility and democratic decision-making. Such changes will result in a renewal of the state's purpose and better use of international resources and expertise in governance. PMID:17208717

  11. Blastocystis: Taxonomy, biology and virulence

    PubMed Central

    Parija, Subhash Chandra; Jeremiah, SS

    2013-01-01

    The unicellular protist Blastocystis has long been an unsolved puzzle for taxonomists, microbiologists and clinicians. Over the years, the organism has been bounced on and off the different branches of the tree of life due the possession of unique phenotypic characters intermediary to different organisms. The organism is polymorphic with only few of forms such as vacuolar, granular, amoeboid, and the cyst form being commonly known. However it could exist in other forms much more frequently than the widely known forms which could be missed by the unaware observer. Certain older concepts in the life cycle of Blastocystis although has been proven wrong are still being followed in various textbooks and other trustworthy internet sources. The causal role of Blastocystis in human disease has long been a subject of controversy. It is widely believed that certain subtypes of the organism are virulent. But this is not so as other factors are also involved in the clinical outcome of the infection. In these contexts, this review intends to shed light on the past misconceptions and the recent findings on the taxonomy, biology and the virulence of this organism. PMID:23961437

  12. Virulence Evolution Within the Ug99 Lineage

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Race TTKSK (syn. Ug99) of Puccinia graminis f. sp. tritici, recognized for possessing virulence to the stem rust resistance gene Sr31, was first identified in Uganda in 1998. Since then, TTKSK has been identified in Kenya in 2005 and Yemen in 2006. In addition to virulence to Sr31, race TTKSK was ...

  13. Evolution of viral virulence: empirical studies

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    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. Both msa genes in Renibacterium salmoninarum are needed for full virulence in bacterial kidney disease

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Coady, A.M.; Murray, A.L.; Elliott, D.G.; Rhodes, L.D.

    2006-01-01

    Renibacterium salmoninarum, a gram-positive diplococcobacillus that causes bacterial kidney disease among salmon and trout, has two chromosomal loci encoding the major soluble antigen (msa) gene. Because the MSA protein is widely suspected to be an important virulence factor, we used insertion-duplication mutagenesis to generate disruptions of either the msa1 or msa2 gene. Surprisingly, expression of MSA protein in broth cultures appeared unaffected. However, the virulence of either mutant in juvenile Chinook salmon (Oncorhynchus tshawytscha) by intraperitoneal challenge was severely attenuated, suggesting that disruption of the msa1 or msa2 gene affected in vivo expression. Copyright ?? 2006, American Society for Microbiology. All Rights Reserved.

  15. Both msa genes in Renibacterium salmoninarum are needed for full virulence in bacterial kidney disease.

    PubMed

    Coady, Alison M; Murray, Anthony L; Elliott, Diane G; Rhodes, Linda D

    2006-04-01

    Renibacterium salmoninarum, a gram-positive diplococcobacillus that causes bacterial kidney disease among salmon and trout, has two chromosomal loci encoding the major soluble antigen (msa) gene. Because the MSA protein is widely suspected to be an important virulence factor, we used insertion-duplication mutagenesis to generate disruptions of either the msa1 or msa2 gene. Surprisingly, expression of MSA protein in broth cultures appeared unaffected. However, the virulence of either mutant in juvenile chinook salmon (Oncorhynchus tshawytscha) by intraperitoneal challenge was severely attenuated, suggesting that disruption of the msa1 or msa2 gene affected in vivo expression. PMID:16597972

  16. Both msa Genes in Renibacterium salmoninarum Are Needed for Full Virulence in Bacterial Kidney Disease

    PubMed Central

    Coady, Alison M.; Murray, Anthony L.; Elliott, Diane G.; Rhodes, Linda D.

    2006-01-01

    Renibacterium salmoninarum, a gram-positive diplococcobacillus that causes bacterial kidney disease among salmon and trout, has two chromosomal loci encoding the major soluble antigen (msa) gene. Because the MSA protein is widely suspected to be an important virulence factor, we used insertion-duplication mutagenesis to generate disruptions of either the msa1 or msa2 gene. Surprisingly, expression of MSA protein in broth cultures appeared unaffected. However, the virulence of either mutant in juvenile chinook salmon (Oncorhynchus tshawytscha) by intraperitoneal challenge was severely attenuated, suggesting that disruption of the msa1 or msa2 gene affected in vivo expression. PMID:16597972

  17. At the Crossroads of Bacterial Metabolism and Virulence Factor Synthesis in Staphylococci

    PubMed Central

    Somerville, Greg A.; Proctor, Richard A.

    2009-01-01

    Summary: Bacteria live in environments that are subject to rapid changes in the availability of the nutrients that are necessary to provide energy and biosynthetic intermediates for the synthesis of macromolecules. Consequently, bacterial survival depends on the ability of bacteria to regulate the expression of genes coding for enzymes required for growth in the altered environment. In pathogenic bacteria, adaptation to an altered environment often includes activating the transcription of virulence genes; hence, many virulence genes are regulated by environmental and nutritional signals. Consistent with this observation, the regulation of most, if not all, virulence determinants in staphylococci is mediated by environmental and nutritional signals. Some of these external signals can be directly transduced into a regulatory response by two-component regulators such as SrrAB; however, other external signals require transduction into intracellular signals. Many of the external environmental and nutritional signals that regulate virulence determinant expression can also alter bacterial metabolic status (e.g., iron limitation). Altering the metabolic status results in the transduction of external signals into intracellular metabolic signals that can be “sensed” by regulatory proteins (e.g., CodY, Rex, and GlnR). This review uses information derived primarily using Bacillus subtilis and Escherichia coli to articulate how gram-positive pathogens, with emphasis on Staphylococcus aureus and Staphylococcus epidermidis, regulate virulence determinant expression in response to a changing environment. PMID:19487727

  18. RegR virulence regulon of rabbit-specific enteropathogenic Escherichia coli strain E22.

    PubMed

    Srikhanta, Yogitha N; Hocking, Dianna M; Praszkier, Judyta; Wakefield, Matthew J; Robins-Browne, Roy M; Yang, Ji; Tauschek, Marija

    2013-04-01

    AraC-like regulators play a key role in the expression of virulence factors in enteric pathogens, such as enteropathogenic Escherichia coli (EPEC), enterotoxigenic E. coli, enteroaggregative E. coli, and Citrobacter rodentium. Bioinformatic analysis of the genome of rabbit-specific EPEC (REPEC) strain E22 (O103:H2) revealed the presence of a gene encoding an AraC-like regulatory protein, RegR, which shares 71% identity to the global virulence regulator, RegA, of C. rodentium. Microarray analysis demonstrated that RegR exerts 25- to 400-fold activation on transcription of several genes encoding putative virulence-associated factors, including a fimbrial operon (SEF14), a serine protease, and an autotransporter adhesin. These observations were confirmed by proteomic analysis of secreted and heat-extracted surface-associated proteins. The mechanism of RegR-mediated activation was investigated by using its most highly upregulated gene target, sefA. Transcriptional analyses and electrophoretic mobility shift assays showed that RegR activates the expression of sefA by binding to a region upstream of the sefA promoter, thereby relieving gene silencing by the global regulatory protein H-NS. Moreover, RegR was found to contribute significantly to virulence in a rabbit infection experiment. Taken together, our findings indicate that RegR controls the expression of a series of accessory adhesins that significantly enhance the virulence of REPEC strain E22. PMID:23340312

  19. A gacS Deletion in Pseudomonas aeruginosa Cystic Fibrosis Isolate CHA Shapes Its Virulence

    PubMed Central

    Sall, Khady Mayebine; Casabona, Maria Guillermina; Bordi, Christophe; Huber, Philippe; de Bentzmann, Sophie; Attrée, Ina; Elsen, Sylvie

    2014-01-01

    Pseudomonas aeruginosa, a human opportunistic pathogen, is capable of provoking acute and chronic infections that are associated with defined sets of virulence factors. During chronic infections, the bacterium accumulates mutations that silence some and activate other genes. Here we show that the cystic fibrosis isolate CHA exhibits a unique virulence phenotype featuring a mucoid morphology, an active Type III Secretion System (T3SS, hallmark of acute infections), and no Type VI Secretion System (H1-T6SS). This virulence profile is due to a 426 bp deletion in the 3′ end of the gacS gene encoding an essential regulatory protein. The absence of GacS disturbs the Gac/Rsm pathway leading to depletion of the small regulatory RNAs RsmY/RsmZ and, in consequence, to expression of T3SS, while switching off the expression of H1-T6SS and Pel polysaccharides. The CHA isolate also exhibits full ability to swim and twitch, due to active flagellum and Type IVa pili. Thus, unlike the classical scheme of balance between virulence factors, clinical strains may adapt to a local niche by expressing both alginate exopolysaccharide, a hallmark of membrane stress that protects from antibiotic action, host defences and phagocytosis, and efficient T3S machinery that is considered as an aggressive virulence factor. PMID:24780952

  20. Proteomic comparison of Ralstonia solanacearum strains reveals temperature dependent virulence factors

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Ralstonia solanacearum, the causal agent of bacterial wilt, is a genetically diverse bacterial plant pathogen present in tropical and subtropical regions of the world that infects more than 200 plant species, including economically important solanaceous crops. Most strains of R. solanacearum are only pathogenic at temperatures between 25 to 30°C with strains that can cause disease below 20°C considered a threat to agriculture in temperate areas. Identifying key molecular factors that distinguish strains virulent at cold temperatures from ones that are not is needed to develop effective management tools for this pathogen. We compared protein profiles of two strains virulent at low temperature and two strains not virulent at low temperature when incubated in the rhizosphere of tomato seedlings at 30 and 18°C using quantitative 2D DIGE gel methods. Spot intensities were quantified and compared, and differentially expressed proteins were sequenced and identified by mass spectrometry (MS/MS). Results Four hundred and eighteen (418) differentially expressed protein spots sequenced produced 101 unique proteins. The identified proteins were classified in the Gene Ontology biological processes categories of metabolism, cell processes, stress response, transport, secretion, motility, and virulence. Identified virulence factors included catalase (KatE), exoglucanase A (ChbA), drug efflux pump, and twitching motility porin (PilQ). Other proteins identified included two components of a putative type VI secretion system. We confirmed differential expression of 13 candidate genes using real time PCR techniques. Global regulators HrpB and HrpG also had temperature dependent expression when quantified by real time PCR. Conclusions The putative involvement of the identified proteins in virulence at low temperature is discussed. The discovery of a functional type VI secretion system provides a new potential virulence mechanism to explore. The global regulators HrpG and

  1. Genomic Insights into a New Citrobacter koseri Strain Revealed Gene Exchanges with the Virulence-Associated Yersinia pestis pPCP1 Plasmid

    PubMed Central

    Armougom, Fabrice; Bitam, Idir; Croce, Olivier; Merhej, Vicky; Barassi, Lina; Nguyen, Ti-Thien; La Scola, Bernard; Raoult, Didier

    2016-01-01

    The history of infectious diseases raised the plague as one of the most devastating for human beings. Far too often considered an ancient disease, the frequent resurgence of the plague has led to consider it as a reemerging disease in Madagascar, Algeria, Libya, and Congo. The genetic factors associated with the pathogenicity of Yersinia pestis, the causative agent of the plague, involve the acquisition of the pPCP1 plasmid that promotes host invasion through the expression of the virulence factor Pla. The surveillance of plague foci after the 2003 outbreak in Algeria resulted in a positive detection of the specific pla gene of Y. pestis in rodents. However, the phenotypic characterization of the isolate identified a Citrobacter koseri. The comparative genomics of our sequenced C. koseri URMITE genome revealed a mosaic gene structure resulting from the lifestyle of our isolate and provided evidence for gene exchanges with different enteric bacteria. The most striking was the acquisition of a continuous 2 kb genomic fragment containing the virulence factor Pla of the Y. pestis pPCP1 plasmid; however, the subcutaneous injection of the CKU strain in mice did not produce any pathogenic effect. Our findings demonstrate that fast molecular detection of plague using solely the pla gene is unsuitable and should rather require Y. pestis gene marker combinations. We also suggest that the evolutionary force that might govern the expression of pathogenicity can occur through the acquisition of virulence genes but could also require the loss or the inactivation of resident genes such as antivirulence genes. PMID:27014253

  2. Genomic Insights into a New Citrobacter koseri Strain Revealed Gene Exchanges with the Virulence-Associated Yersinia pestis pPCP1 Plasmid.

    PubMed

    Armougom, Fabrice; Bitam, Idir; Croce, Olivier; Merhej, Vicky; Barassi, Lina; Nguyen, Ti-Thien; La Scola, Bernard; Raoult, Didier

    2016-01-01

    The history of infectious diseases raised the plague as one of the most devastating for human beings. Far too often considered an ancient disease, the frequent resurgence of the plague has led to consider it as a reemerging disease in Madagascar, Algeria, Libya, and Congo. The genetic factors associated with the pathogenicity of Yersinia pestis, the causative agent of the plague, involve the acquisition of the pPCP1 plasmid that promotes host invasion through the expression of the virulence factor Pla. The surveillance of plague foci after the 2003 outbreak in Algeria resulted in a positive detection of the specific pla gene of Y. pestis in rodents. However, the phenotypic characterization of the isolate identified a Citrobacter koseri. The comparative genomics of our sequenced C. koseri URMITE genome revealed a mosaic gene structure resulting from the lifestyle of our isolate and provided evidence for gene exchanges with different enteric bacteria. The most striking was the acquisition of a continuous 2 kb genomic fragment containing the virulence factor Pla of the Y. pestis pPCP1 plasmid; however, the subcutaneous injection of the CKU strain in mice did not produce any pathogenic effect. Our findings demonstrate that fast molecular detection of plague using solely the pla gene is unsuitable and should rather require Y. pestis gene marker combinations. We also suggest that the evolutionary force that might govern the expression of pathogenicity can occur through the acquisition of virulence genes but could also require the loss or the inactivation of resident genes such as antivirulence genes. PMID:27014253

  3. Unravelling a histone code for malaria virulence.

    PubMed

    Comeaux, Christy A; Duraisingh, Manoj T

    2007-12-01

    Epigenetic phenomena have been shown to play a role in the regulated expression of virulence genes in several pathogenic organisms, including the var gene family in Plasmodium falciparum. A better understanding of how P. falciparum can both maintain a single active var gene locus through many erythrocytic cycles and also achieve successive switching to different loci in order to evade the host immune system is greatly needed. Disruption of this tightly co-ordinated expression system presents an opportunity for increased clearance of the parasites by the immune system and, in turn, reduced mortality and morbidity. In the current issue of Molecular Microbiology, Lopez-Rubio and colleagues investigate the correlation of specific post-translational histone modifications with different transcriptional states of a single var gene, var2csa. Quantitative chromatin immunoprecipitation is used to demonstrate that different histone methylation marks are enriched at the 5' flanking and coding regions of active, poised or silenced var genes. They identify an increase of H3K4me2 and H3K4me3 in the 5' flanking region of an active var locus and expand on an earlier finding that H3K9me3 is enriched in the coding regions of silenced var genes. The authors also present evidence that H3K4me2 bookmarks the active var gene locus during later developmental stages for expression in the subsequent asexual cycle, hinting at a potential mechanism for transcriptional 'memory'. The stage is now set for work generating a complete catalogue of all histone modifications associated with var gene regulation as well as functional studies striving to uncover the precise mechanisms underlying these observations. PMID:18028316

  4. Express

    Integrated Risk Information System (IRIS)

    Express ; CASRN 101200 - 48 - 0 Human health assessment information on a chemical substance is included in the IRIS database only after a comprehensive review of toxicity data , as outlined in the IRIS assessment development process . Sections I ( Health Hazard Assessments for Noncarcinogenic Effect

  5. Using the Ralstonia solanacearum Tat Secretome To Identify Bacterial Wilt Virulence Factors▿ †

    PubMed Central

    González, Enid T.; Brown, Darby G.; Swanson, Jill K.; Allen, Caitilyn

    2007-01-01

    To identify secreted virulence factors involved in bacterial wilt disease caused by the phytopathogen Ralstonia solanacearum, we mutated tatC, a key component of the twin-arginine translocation (Tat) secretion system. The R. solanacearum tatC mutation was pleiotropic; its phenotypes included defects in cell division, nitrate utilization, polygalacturonase activity, membrane stability, and growth in plant tissue. Bioinformatic analysis of the R. solanacearum strain GMI1000 genome predicted that this pathogen secretes 70 proteins via the Tat system. The R. solanacearum tatC strain was severely attenuated in its ability to cause disease, killing just over 50% of tomato plants in a naturalistic soil soak assay where the wild-type parent killed 100% of the plants. This result suggested that elements of the Tat secretome may be novel bacterial wilt virulence factors. To identify contributors to R. solanacearum virulence, we cloned and mutated three genes whose products are predicted to be secreted by the Tat system: RSp1521, encoding a predicted AcvB-like protein, and two genes, RSc1651 and RSp1575, that were identified as upregulated in planta by an in vivo expression technology screen. The RSc1651 mutant had wild-type virulence on tomato plants. However, mutants lacking either RSp1521, which appears to be involved in acid tolerance, or RSp1575, which encodes a possible amino acid binding protein, were significantly reduced in virulence on tomato plants. Additional bacterial wilt virulence factors may be found in the Tat secretome. PMID:17468289

  6. Pseudomonas aeruginosa PAO1 virulence factors and poplar tree response in the rhizosphere

    PubMed Central

    Attila, Can; Ueda, Akihiro; Cirillo, Suat L. G.; Cirillo, Jeffrey D.; Chen, Wilfred; Wood, Thomas K.

    2008-01-01

    Summary Whole‐transcriptome analysis was used here for the first time in the rhizosphere to discern the genes involved in the pathogenic response of Pseudomonas aeruginosa PAO1 as well as to discern the response of the poplar tree. Differential gene expression shows that 185 genes of the bacterium and 753 genes of the poplar tree were induced in the rhizosphere. Using the P. aeruginosatranscriptome analysis, isogenic knockout mutants, and two novel plant assays (poplar and barley), seven novel PAO1 virulence genes were identified (PA1385, PA2146, PA2462, PA2463, PA2663, PA4150 and PA4295). The uncharacterized putative haemolysin repressor, PA2463, upon inactivation, resulted in greater poplar virulence and elevated haemolysis while this mutant remained competitive in the rhizosphere. In addition, disruption of the haemolysin gene itself (PA2462) reduced the haemolytic activity of P. aeruginosa, caused less cytotoxicity and reduced barley virulence, as expected. Inactivating PA1385, a putative glycosyl transferase, reduced both poplar and barley virulence. Furthermore, disrupting PA2663, a putative membrane protein, reduced biofilm formation by 20‐fold. Inactivation of PA3476 (rhlI) increased virulence with barley as well as haemolytic activity and cytotoxicity, so quorum sensing is important in plant pathogenesis. Hence, this strategy is capable of elucidating virulence genes for an important pathogen. PMID:21261818

  7. High abundance of virulence gene homologues in marine bacteria

    PubMed Central

    Persson, Olof P; Pinhassi, Jarone; Riemann, Lasse; Marklund, Britt-Inger; Rhen, Mikael; Normark, Staffan; González, José M; Hagström, Åke

    2009-01-01

    Marine bacteria can cause harm to single-celled and multicellular eukaryotes. However, relatively little is known about the underlying genetic basis for marine bacterial interactions with higher organisms. We examined whole-genome sequences from a large number of marine bacteria for the prevalence of homologues to virulence genes and pathogenicity islands known from bacteria that are pathogenic to terrestrial animals and plants. As many as 60 out of 119 genomes of marine bacteria, with no known association to infectious disease, harboured genes of virulence-associated types III, IV, V and VI protein secretion systems. Type III secretion was relatively uncommon, while type IV was widespread among alphaproteobacteria (particularly among roseobacters) and type VI was primarily found among gammaproteobacteria. Other examples included homologues of the Yersinia murine toxin and a phage-related ‘antifeeding’ island. Analysis of the Global Ocean Sampling metagenomic data indicated that virulence genes were present in up to 8% of the planktonic bacteria, with highest values in productive waters. From a marine ecology perspective, expression of these widely distributed genes would indicate that some bacteria infect or even consume live cells, that is, generate a previously unrecognized flow of organic matter and nutrients directly from eukaryotes to bacteria. PMID:19207573

  8. Characterization and adsorption of Lactobacillus virulent phage P1.

    PubMed

    Chen, X; Xi, Y; Zhang, H; Wang, Z; Fan, M; Liu, Y; Wu, W

    2016-09-01

    Bacteriophage infection of lactic acid bacteria is considered an important problem worldwide in the food fermentation industry, as it may produce low quality or unsafe foods, cause fermentation failure, and result in economic losses. To increase current knowledge on the properties of Lactobacillus virulent phages, we evaluated the effect of divalent cations, temperature, pH, and chloramphenicol on the adsorption ability of Lactobacillus virulent phage P1. Phage P1 was isolated from the abnormal fermentation liquid of Lactobacillus plantarum IMAU10120. The results showed that this phage belonged to the Siphoviridae family. The latent period of this phage was 45min, and the burst time was 90min. Burst size was 132.88±2.37 phage counts expressed per milliliter per infective center. This phage showed good tolerance at different temperatures, but incubation at 50°C only affected its adsorption. Adsorption rate reached a maximum value between 30 and 42°C. A high adsorption value of phage infectivity was obtained from pH 6 to 8. Moreover, calcium ions promoted and increased the adsorption capacity of phage P1, but magnesium ions had negative effects. Chloramphenicol had no effect on phage adsorption. This study increased current knowledge on the characterization and biological aspects of Lactobacillus virulent phages, and may provide some basic information that can be used to design successful antiphage strategies in the food industry. PMID:27372579

  9. Hyperexpression of α-hemolysin explains enhanced virulence of sequence type 93 community-associated methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background The community-associated methicillin-resistant S. aureus (CA-MRSA) ST93 clone is becoming dominant in Australia and is clinically highly virulent. In addition, sepsis and skin infection models demonstrate that ST93 CA-MRSA is the most virulent global clone of S. aureus tested to date. While the determinants of virulence have been studied in other clones of CA-MRSA, the basis for hypervirulence in ST93 CA-MRSA has not been defined. Results Here, using a geographically and temporally dispersed collection of ST93 isolates we demonstrate that the ST93 population hyperexpresses key CA-MRSA exotoxins, in particular α-hemolysin, in comparison to other global clones. Gene deletion and complementation studies, and virulence comparisons in a murine skin infection model, showed unequivocally that increased expression of α-hemolysin is the key staphylococcal virulence determinant for this clone. Genome sequencing and comparative genomics of strains with divergent exotoxin profiles demonstrated that, like other S. aureus clones, the quorum sensing agr system is the master regulator of toxin expression and virulence in ST93 CA-MRSA. However, we also identified a previously uncharacterized AraC/XylS family regulator (AryK) that potentiates toxin expression and virulence in S. aureus. Conclusions These data demonstrate that hyperexpression of α-hemolysin mediates enhanced virulence in ST93 CA-MRSA, and additional control of exotoxin production, in particular α-hemolysin, mediated by regulatory systems other than agr have the potential to fine-tune virulence in CA-MRSA. PMID:24512075

  10. [Virulence factors in Pseudomonas aeruginosa: mechanisms and modes of regulation].

    PubMed

    Ben Haj Khalifa, Anis; Moissenet, Didier; Vu Thien, Hoang; Khedher, Mohamed

    2011-01-01

    Pseudomonas aeruginosa is a bacterium responsible for severe nosocomial infections, life-threatening infections in immunocompromised persons, and chronic infections in cystic fibrosis patients. The bacterium's virulence depends on a large number of cell-associated and extracellular factors. The virulence factors play an important pathological role in the colonization, the survival of the bacteria and the invasion of tissues. There are two types of virulence factors: (1) factors involved in the acute infection: these factors are either on the surface of P. aeruginosa, either secreted. The pili allow adherence to the epithelium. The exoenzyme S and other adhesins reinforce the adherence to epithelial cells. The exotoxin A is responsible of tissue necrosis. Phospholipase C is a thermolabile haemolysin. The pathogenic role of exoenzyme S is attributable to the disruption of normal cytoskeletal organization, the destruction of immunoglobulin G and A, leads to depolymerization of actin filaments and contributes to the resistance to macrophages. P. aeruginosa produces at least four proteases causing bleeding and tissue necrosis; (2) factors involved in the chronic infection: siderophores (pyoverdin and pyochelin), allow the bacteria to multiply in the absence of ferrous ions. The strains isolated from patients with cystic fibrosis have a pseudocapsule of alginate that protects the bacterium from phagocytosis, dehydration and antibiotics. Moreover, it improves adherence to epithelial cells forming a biofilm. Two different types of regulation systems control the expression of the majority of these virulence factors: the two-component transcriptional regulatory system and the quorum sensing system. These two mechanisms are necessary to the survival and the proliferation of this microorganism in the host. PMID:21896403

  11. Calcineurin Targets Involved in Stress Survival and Fungal Virulence.

    PubMed

    Park, Hee-Soo; Chow, Eve W L; Fu, Ci; Soderblom, Erik J; Moseley, M Arthur; Heitman, Joseph; Cardenas, Maria E

    2016-09-01

    Calcineurin governs stress survival, sexual differentiation, and virulence of the human fungal pathogen Cryptococcus neoformans. Calcineurin is activated by increased Ca2+ levels caused by stress, and transduces signals by dephosphorylating protein substrates. Herein, we identified and characterized calcineurin substrates in C. neoformans by employing phosphoproteomic TiO2 enrichment and quantitative mass spectrometry. The identified targets include the transactivator Crz1 as well as novel substrates whose functions are linked to P-bodies/stress granules (PBs/SGs) and mRNA translation and decay, such as Pbp1 and Puf4. We show that Crz1 is a bona fide calcineurin substrate, and Crz1 localization and transcriptional activity are controlled by calcineurin. We previously demonstrated that thermal and other stresses trigger calcineurin localization to PBs/SGs. Several calcineurin targets localized to PBs/SGs, including Puf4 and Pbp1, contribute to stress resistance and virulence individually or in conjunction with Crz1. Moreover, Pbp1 is also required for sexual development. Genetic epistasis analysis revealed that Crz1 and the novel targets Lhp1, Puf4, and Pbp1 function in a branched calcineurin pathway that orchestrates stress survival and virulence. These findings support a model whereby calcineurin controls stress and virulence, at the transcriptional level via Crz1, and post-transcriptionally by localizing to PBs/SGs and acting on targets involved in mRNA metabolism. The calcineurin targets identified in this study share little overlap with known calcineurin substrates, with the exception of Crz1. In particular, the mRNA binding proteins and PBs/SGs residents comprise a cohort of novel calcineurin targets that have not been previously linked to calcineurin in mammals or in Saccharomyces cerevisiae. This study suggests either extensive evolutionary rewiring of the calcineurin pathway, or alternatively that these novel calcineurin targets have yet to be characterized

  12. Virulence in malaria: an evolutionary viewpoint.

    PubMed Central

    Mackinnon, Margaret J; Read, Andrew F

    2004-01-01

    Malaria parasites cause much morbidity and mortality to their human hosts. From our evolutionary perspective, this is because virulence is positively associated with parasite transmission rate. Natural selection therefore drives virulence upwards, but only to the point where the cost to transmission caused by host death begins to outweigh the transmission benefits. In this review, we summarize data from the laboratory rodent malaria model, Plasmodium chabaudi, and field data on the human malaria parasite, P. falciparum, in relation to this virulence trade-off hypothesis. The data from both species show strong positive correlations between asexual multiplication, transmission rate, infection length, morbidity and mortality, and therefore support the underlying assumptions of the hypothesis. Moreover, the P. falciparum data show that expected total lifetime transmission of the parasite is maximized in young children in whom the fitness cost of host mortality balances the fitness benefits of higher transmission rates and slower clearance rates, thus exhibiting the hypothesized virulence trade-off. This evolutionary explanation of virulence appears to accord well with the clinical and molecular explanations of pathogenesis that involve cytoadherence, red cell invasion and immune evasion, although direct evidence of the fitness advantages of these mechanisms is scarce. One implication of this evolutionary view of virulence is that parasite populations are expected to evolve new levels of virulence in response to medical interventions such as vaccines and drugs. PMID:15306410

  13. Government Regulatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Becker, Katie

    Government regulation of food products, food processing, and food preparation is imperative in bringing an unadulterated, nonmisleading, and safe food product to market and is relevant to all areas of food science, including engineering, processing, chemistry, and microbiology. The liability associated with providing consumers with an adulterated or substandard product cannot only tarnish a company's name and reputation, but also impose substantial financial repercussions on the company and those individuals who play an active role in the violation. In order for a company to fully comply with the relevant food laws (both federal and state), an intimate knowledge of food science is required. Individuals knowledgeable in food science play an integral role not only in implementing and counseling food companies/processors to ensure compliance with government regulations, but these individuals are also necessary to the state and federal governments that make and enforce the relevant laws and regulators.

  14. In Vitro Analysis of Pseudomonas aeruginosa Virulence Using Conditions That Mimic the Environment at Specific Infection Sites.

    PubMed

    Colmer-Hamood, J A; Dzvova, N; Kruczek, C; Hamood, A N

    2016-01-01

    Pseudomonas aeruginosa is a Gram-negative opportunistic pathogen that causes chronic lung infection in patients with cystic fibrosis (CF) and acute systemic infections in severely burned patients and immunocompromised patients including cancer patients undergoing chemotherapy and HIV infected individuals. In response to the environmental conditions at specific infection sites, P. aeruginosa expresses certain sets of cell-associated and extracellular virulence factors that produce tissue damage. Analyzing the mechanisms that govern the production of these virulence factors in vitro requires media that closely mimic the environmental conditions within the infection sites. In this chapter, we review studies based on media that closely resemble three in vivo conditions, the thick mucus accumulated within the lung alveoli of CF patients, the serum-rich wound bed and the bloodstream. Media resembling the CF alveolar mucus include standard laboratory media supplemented with sputum obtained from CF patients as well as prepared synthetic mucus media formulated to contain the individual components of CF sputum. Media supplemented with serum or individual serum components have served as surrogates for the soluble host components of wound infections, while whole blood has been used to investigate the adaptation of pathogens to the bloodstream. Studies using these media have provided valuable information regarding P. aeruginosa gene expression in different host environments as varying sets of genes were differentially regulated during growth in each medium. The unique effects observed indicate the essential role of these in vitro media that closely mimic the in vivo conditions in providing accurate information regarding the pathogenesis of P. aeruginosa infections. PMID:27571695

  15. Candida albicans Inhibits Pseudomonas aeruginosa Virulence through Suppression of Pyochelin and Pyoverdine Biosynthesis

    PubMed Central

    Lopez-Medina, Eduardo; Fan, Di; Coughlin, Laura A.; Ho, Evi X.; Lamont, Iain L.; Reimmann, Cornelia; Hooper, Lora V.; Koh, Andrew Y.

    2015-01-01

    Bacterial-fungal interactions have important physiologic and medical ramifications, but the mechanisms of these interactions are poorly understood. The gut is host to trillions of microorganisms, and bacterial-fungal interactions are likely to be important. Using a neutropenic mouse model of microbial gastrointestinal colonization and dissemination, we show that the fungus Candida albicans inhibits the virulence of the bacterium Pseudomonas aeruginosa by inhibiting P. aeruginosa pyochelin and pyoverdine gene expression, which plays a critical role in iron acquisition and virulence. Accordingly, deletion of both P. aeruginosa pyochelin and pyoverdine genes attenuates P. aeruginosa virulence. Heat-killed C. albicans has no effect on P. aeruginosa, whereas C. albicans secreted proteins directly suppress P. aeruginosa pyoverdine and pyochelin expression and inhibit P. aeruginosa virulence in mice. Interestingly, suppression or deletion of pyochelin and pyoverdine genes has no effect on P. aeruginosa’s ability to colonize the GI tract but does decrease P. aeruginosa’s cytotoxic effect on cultured colonocytes. Finally, oral iron supplementation restores P. aeruginosa virulence in P. aeruginosa and C. albicans colonized mice. Together, our findings provide insight into how a bacterial-fungal interaction can modulate bacterial virulence in the intestine. Previously described bacterial-fungal antagonistic interactions have focused on growth inhibition or colonization inhibition/modulation, yet here we describe a novel observation of fungal-inhibition of bacterial effectors critical for virulence but not important for colonization. These findings validate the use of a mammalian model system to explore the complexities of polymicrobial, polykingdom infections in order to identify new therapeutic targets for preventing microbial disease. PMID:26313907

  16. Candida albicans Inhibits Pseudomonas aeruginosa Virulence through Suppression of Pyochelin and Pyoverdine Biosynthesis.

    PubMed

    Lopez-Medina, Eduardo; Fan, Di; Coughlin, Laura A; Ho, Evi X; Lamont, Iain L; Reimmann, Cornelia; Hooper, Lora V; Koh, Andrew Y

    2015-08-01

    Bacterial-fungal interactions have important physiologic and medical ramifications, but the mechanisms of these interactions are poorly understood. The gut is host to trillions of microorganisms, and bacterial-fungal interactions are likely to be important. Using a neutropenic mouse model of microbial gastrointestinal colonization and dissemination, we show that the fungus Candida albicans inhibits the virulence of the bacterium Pseudomonas aeruginosa by inhibiting P. aeruginosa pyochelin and pyoverdine gene expression, which plays a critical role in iron acquisition and virulence. Accordingly, deletion of both P. aeruginosa pyochelin and pyoverdine genes attenuates P. aeruginosa virulence. Heat-killed C. albicans has no effect on P. aeruginosa, whereas C. albicans secreted proteins directly suppress P. aeruginosa pyoverdine and pyochelin expression and inhibit P. aeruginosa virulence in mice. Interestingly, suppression or deletion of pyochelin and pyoverdine genes has no effect on P. aeruginosa's ability to colonize the GI tract but does decrease P. aeruginosa's cytotoxic effect on cultured colonocytes. Finally, oral iron supplementation restores P. aeruginosa virulence in P. aeruginosa and C. albicans colonized mice. Together, our findings provide insight into how a bacterial-fungal interaction can modulate bacterial virulence in the intestine. Previously described bacterial-fungal antagonistic interactions have focused on growth inhibition or colonization inhibition/modulation, yet here we describe a novel observation of fungal-inhibition of bacterial effectors critical for virulence but not important for colonization. These findings validate the use of a mammalian model system to explore the complexities of polymicrobial, polykingdom infections in order to identify new therapeutic targets for preventing microbial disease. PMID:26313907

  17. Control of Gene Expression in Leptospira spp. by Transcription Activator-Like Effectors Demonstrates a Potential Role for LigA and LigB in Leptospira interrogans Virulence.

    PubMed

    Pappas, Christopher J; Picardeau, Mathieu

    2015-11-01

    Leptospirosis is a zoonotic disease that affects ∼1 million people annually, with a mortality rate of >10%. Currently, there is an absence of effective genetic manipulation tools for targeted mutagenesis in pathogenic leptospires. Transcription activator-like effectors (TALEs) are a recently described group of repressors that modify transcriptional activity in prokaryotic and eukaryotic cells by directly binding to a targeted sequence within the host genome. To determine the applicability of TALEs within Leptospira spp., two TALE constructs were designed. First, a constitutively expressed TALE gene specific for the lacO-like region upstream of bgaL was trans inserted in the saprophyte Leptospira biflexa (the TALEβgal strain). Reverse transcriptase PCR (RT-PCR) analysis and enzymatic assays demonstrated that BgaL was not expressed in the TALEβgal strain. Second, to study the role of LigA and LigB in pathogenesis, a constitutively expressed TALE gene with specificity for the homologous promoter regions of ligA and ligB was cis inserted into the pathogen Leptospira interrogans (TALElig). LigA and LigB expression was studied by using three independent clones: TALElig1, TALElig2, and TALElig3. Immunoblot analysis of osmotically induced TALElig clones demonstrated 2- to 9-fold reductions in the expression levels of LigA and LigB, with the highest reductions being noted for TALElig1 and TALElig2, which were avirulent in vivo and nonrecoverable from animal tissues. This study reconfirms galactosidase activity in the saprophyte and suggests a role for LigA and LigB in pathogenesis. Collectively, this study demonstrates that TALEs are effective at reducing the expression of targeted genes within saprophytic and pathogenic strains of Leptospira spp., providing an additional genetic manipulation tool for this genus. PMID:26341206

  18. Control of Gene Expression in Leptospira spp. by Transcription Activator-Like Effectors Demonstrates a Potential Role for LigA and LigB in Leptospira interrogans Virulence

    PubMed Central

    Pappas, Christopher J.

    2015-01-01

    Leptospirosis is a zoonotic disease that affects ∼1 million people annually, with a mortality rate of >10%. Currently, there is an absence of effective genetic manipulation tools for targeted mutagenesis in pathogenic leptospires. Transcription activator-like effectors (TALEs) are a recently described group of repressors that modify transcriptional activity in prokaryotic and eukaryotic cells by directly binding to a targeted sequence within the host genome. To determine the applicability of TALEs within Leptospira spp., two TALE constructs were designed. First, a constitutively expressed TALE gene specific for the lacO-like region upstream of bgaL was trans inserted in the saprophyte Leptospira biflexa (the TALEβgal strain). Reverse transcriptase PCR (RT-PCR) analysis and enzymatic assays demonstrated that BgaL was not expressed in the TALEβgal strain. Second, to study the role of LigA and LigB in pathogenesis, a constitutively expressed TALE gene with specificity for the homologous promoter regions of ligA and ligB was cis inserted into the pathogen Leptospira interrogans (TALElig). LigA and LigB expression was studied by using three independent clones: TALElig1, TALElig2, and TALElig3. Immunoblot analysis of osmotically induced TALElig clones demonstrated 2- to 9-fold reductions in the expression levels of LigA and LigB, with the highest reductions being noted for TALElig1 and TALElig2, which were avirulent in vivo and nonrecoverable from animal tissues. This study reconfirms galactosidase activity in the saprophyte and suggests a role for LigA and LigB in pathogenesis. Collectively, this study demonstrates that TALEs are effective at reducing the expression of targeted genes within saprophytic and pathogenic strains of Leptospira spp., providing an additional genetic manipulation tool for this genus. PMID:26341206

  19. Regulation of Pseudomonas aeruginosa virulence factors by two novel RNA thermometers

    PubMed Central

    Grosso-Becerra, María Victoria; Croda-García, Gerardo; Merino, Enrique; Servín-González, Luis; Mojica-Espinosa, Raúl; Soberón-Chávez, Gloria

    2014-01-01

    In a number of bacterial pathogens, the production of virulence factors is induced at 37 °C; this effect is often regulated by mRNA structures formed in the 5′ untranslated region (UTR) that block translation initiation of genes at environmental temperatures. At 37 °C, the RNA structures become unstable and ribosomes gain access to their binding sites in the mRNAs. Pseudomonas aeruginosa is an important opportunistic pathogen and the expression of many of its virulence-associated traits is regulated by the quorum-sensing (QS) response, but the effect of temperature on virulence-factor expression is not well-understood. The aim of this work is the characterization of the molecular mechanism involved in thermoregulation of QS-dependent virulence-factor production. We demonstrate that traits that are dependent on the QS transcriptional regulator RhlR have a higher expression at 37 °C, correlating with a higher RhlR concentration as measured by Western blot. We also determined, using gene fusions and point mutations, that RhlR thermoregulation is a posttranscriptional effect dependent on an RNA thermometer of the ROSE (Repression Of heat-Shock gene Expression) family. This RNA element regulates the expression of the rhlAB operon, involved in rhamnolipid production, and of the downstream rhlR gene. We also identified a second functional thermometer in the 5′ UTR of the lasI gene. We confirmed that these RNA thermometers are the main mechanism of thermoregulation of QS-dependent gene expression in P. aeruginosa using quantitative real-time PCR. This is the first description, to our knowledge, of a ROSE element regulating the expression of virulence traits and of an RNA thermometer controlling multiple genes in an operon through a polar effect. PMID:25313031

  20. The extinction differential induced virulence macroevolution

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Feng; Xu, Liufang; Wang, Jin

    2014-04-01

    We apply the potential-flux landscape theory to deal with the large fluctuation induced extinction phenomena. We quantify the most probable extinction pathway on the landscape and measure the extinction risk by the landscape topography. In this Letter, we investigate the disease extinction through an epidemic model described by a set of chemical reaction. We found the virulence-differential-dependent symbioses between mother and daughter pathogen species: mutualism and parasitism. The symbioses, whether mutualism or parasitism, benefit the higher virulence species. This implies that speciation towards lower virulence is an effective strategy for a pathogen species to reduce its extinction risk.

  1. Mutations in the bvgA gene of Bordetella pertussis that differentially affect regulation of virulence determinants.

    PubMed Central

    Stibitz, S

    1994-01-01

    By using chemical mutagenesis and genetic mapping, a search was undertaken for previously undescribed genes which may be involved in different regulatory mechanisms governing different virulence factors of Bordetella pertussis. Previous studies have shown that the fha locus encoding filamentous hemagglutinin is regulated directly by the bvgAS two component system, while regulation of ptx encoding pertussis toxin is less direct or occurs by a different mechanism. With a strain containing gene fusions to each of these regulated loci, screening was done for mutations which were defective for ptx expression but maintained normal or nearly normal levels of fha expression. Two mutations which had such a phenotype and were also deficient in adenylate cyclase toxin/hemolysin expression were found and characterized more fully. Both were found to affect residues in the C-terminal portion of the BvgA response regulator protein, a domain which shares sequence similarity with a family of regulatory proteins including FixJ, UhpA, MalT, RcsA, RcsB, and LuxR. The residues affected are within a region which, by extension from studies on the LuxR protein, may be involved in transcriptional activation. Images PMID:8083156

  2. From Partnership to Community Governance

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ranson, Stewart

    2010-01-01

    If learning is a journey between worlds, school governing bodies have a crucial role to play in mediating them. By establishing a public space for the voice of different communities to be expressed and deliberated governing bodies enable schools to understand and engage the cultural sources that motivate young people to learn. This article draws…

  3. Salmonella enterica Serovar Typhimurium Skills To Succeed in the Host: Virulence and Regulation

    PubMed Central

    Fàbrega, Anna

    2013-01-01

    SUMMARY Salmonella enterica serovar Typhimurium is a primary enteric pathogen infecting both humans and animals. Infection begins with the ingestion of contaminated food or water so that salmonellae reach the intestinal epithelium and trigger gastrointestinal disease. In some patients the infection spreads upon invasion of the intestinal epithelium, internalization within phagocytes, and subsequent dissemination. In that case, antimicrobial therapy, based on fluoroquinolones and expanded-spectrum cephalosporins as the current drugs of choice, is indicated. To accomplish the pathogenic process, the Salmonella chromosome comprises several virulence mechanisms. The most important virulence genes are those located within the so-called Salmonella pathogenicity islands (SPIs). Thus far, five SPIs have been reported to have a major contribution to pathogenesis. Nonetheless, further virulence traits, such as the pSLT virulence plasmid, adhesins, flagella, and biofilm-related proteins, also contribute to success within the host. Several regulatory mechanisms which synchronize all these elements in order to guarantee bacterial survival have been described. These mechanisms govern the transitions from the different pathogenic stages and drive the pathogen to achieve maximal efficiency inside the host. This review focuses primarily on the virulence armamentarium of this pathogen and the extremely complicated regulatory network controlling its success. PMID:23554419

  4. Campylobacter Polysaccharide Capsules: Virulence and Vaccines

    PubMed Central

    Guerry, Patricia; Poly, Frédéric; Riddle, Mark; Maue, Alexander C.; Chen, Yu-Han; Monteiro, Mario A.

    2012-01-01

    Campylobacter jejuni remains a major cause of bacterial diarrhea worldwide and is associated with numerous sequelae, including Guillain Barré Syndrome, inflammatory bowel disease, reactive arthritis, and irritable bowel syndrome. C. jejuni is unusual for an intestinal pathogen in its ability to coat its surface with a polysaccharide capsule (CPS). These capsular polysaccharides vary in sugar composition and linkage, especially those involving heptoses of unusual configuration and O-methyl phosphoramidate linkages. This structural diversity is consistent with CPS being the major serodeterminant of the Penner scheme, of which there are 47 C. jejuni serotypes. Both CPS expression and expression of modifications are subject to phase variation by slip strand mismatch repair. Although capsules are virulence factors for other pathogens, the role of CPS in C. jejuni disease has not been well defined beyond descriptive studies demonstrating a role in serum resistance and for diarrhea in a ferret model of disease. However, perhaps the most compelling evidence for a role in pathogenesis are data that CPS conjugate vaccines protect against diarrheal disease in non-human primates. A CPS conjugate vaccine approach against this pathogen is intriguing, but several questions need to be addressed, including the valency of CPS types required for an effective vaccine. There have been numerous studies of prevalence of CPS serotypes in the developed world, but few studies from developing countries where the disease incidence is higher. The complexity and cost of Penner serotyping has limited its usefulness, and a recently developed multiplex PCR method for determination of capsule type offers the potential of a more rapid and affordable method. Comparative studies have shown a strong correlation of the two methods and studies are beginning to ascertain CPS-type distribution worldwide, as well as examination of correlation of severity of illness with specific CPS types. PMID:22919599

  5. Is dolphin morbillivirus virulent for white-beaked dolphins (Lagenorhynchus albirostris)?

    PubMed

    van Elk, C E; van de Bildt, M W G; Jauniaux, T; Hiemstra, S; van Run, P R W A; Foster, G; Meerbeek, J; Osterhaus, A D M E; Kuiken, T

    2014-11-01

    The virulence of morbilliviruses for toothed whales (odontocetes) appears to differ according to host species. In 4 species of odontocetes, morbilliviruses are highly virulent, causing large-scale epizootics with high mortality. In 8 other species of odontocetes, including white-beaked dolphins (Lagenorhynchus albirostris), morbilliviruses have been found as an incidental infection. In these species, the virulence of morbilliviruses is not clear. Therefore, the admission of 2 white-beaked dolphins with morbillivirus infection into a rehabilitation center provided a unique opportunity to investigate the virulence of morbillivirus in this species. By phylogenetic analysis, the morbilliviruses in both animals were identified as a dolphin morbillivirus (DMV) most closely related to that detected in a white-beaked dolphin in Germany in 2007. Both animals were examined clinically and pathologically. Case No. 1 had a chronic neural DMV infection, characterized by polioencephalitis in the cerebrum and morbillivirus antigen expression limited to neurons and glial cells. Surprisingly, no nervous signs were observed in this animal during the 6 months before death. Case No. 2 had a subacute systemic DMV infection, characterized by interstitial pneumonia, leucopenia, lymphoid depletion, and DMV antigen expression in mononuclear cells and syncytia in the lung and in mononuclear cells in multiple lymphoid organs. Cause of death was not attributed to DMV infection in either animal. DMV was not detected in 2 contemporaneously stranded white-beaked dolphins. Stranding rate did not increase in the region. These results suggest that DMV is not highly virulent for white-beaked dolphins. PMID:24399208

  6. The CpxRA two-component system contributes to Legionella pneumophila virulence.

    PubMed

    Tanner, Jennifer R; Li, Laam; Faucher, Sébastien P; Brassinga, Ann Karen C

    2016-06-01

    The bacterium Legionella pneumophila is capable of intracellular replication within freshwater protozoa as well as human macrophages, the latter of which results in the serious pneumonia Legionnaires' disease. A primary factor involved in these host cell interactions is the Dot/Icm Type IV secretion system responsible for translocating effector proteins needed to establish and maintain the bacterial replicative niche. Several regulatory factors have been identified to control the expression of the Dot/Icm system and effectors, one of which is the CpxRA two-component system, suggesting essentiality for virulence. In this study, we generated cpxR, cpxA and cpxRA in-frame null mutant strains to further delineate the role of the CpxRA system in bacterial survival and virulence. We found that cpxR is essential for intracellular replication within Acanthamoeba castellanii, but not in U937-derived macrophages. Transcriptome analysis revealed that CpxRA regulates a large number of virulence-associated proteins including Dot/Icm effectors as well as Type II secreted substrates. Furthermore, the cpxR and cpxRA mutant strains were more sodium resistant than the parental strain Lp02, and cpxRA expression reaches maximal levels during postexponential phase. Taken together, our findings suggest the CpxRA system is a key contributor to L. pneumophila virulence in protozoa via virulence factor regulation. PMID:26934669