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Sample records for progenitor toxin complex

  1. High-resolution crystal structure of HA33 of botulinum neurotoxin type B progenitor toxin complex.

    PubMed

    Lee, Kwangkook; Lam, Kwok-Ho; Kruel, Anna Magdalena; Perry, Kay; Rummel, Andreas; Jin, Rongsheng

    2014-04-01

    Botulinum neurotoxins (BoNTs) are produced as progenitor toxin complexes (PTCs) by Clostridium botulinum. The PTCs are composed of BoNT and non-toxic neurotoxin-associated proteins (NAPs), which serve to protect and deliver BoNT through the gastrointestinal tract in food borne botulism. HA33 is a key NAP component that specifically recognizes host carbohydrates and helps enrich PTC on the intestinal lumen preceding its transport across the epithelial barriers. Here, we report the crystal structure of HA33 of type B PTC (HA33/B) in complex with lactose at 1.46Å resolution. The structural comparisons among HA33 of serotypes A-D reveal two different HA33-glycan interaction modes. The glycan-binding pockets on HA33/A and B are more suitable to recognize galactose-containing glycans in comparison to the equivalent sites on HA33/C and D. On the contrary, HA33/C and D could potentially recognize Neu5Ac as an independent receptor, whereas HA33/A and B do not. These findings indicate that the different oral toxicity and host susceptibility observed among different BoNT serotypes could be partly determined by the serotype-specific interaction between HA33 and host carbohydrate receptors. Furthermore, we have identified a key structural water molecule that mediates the HA33/B-lactose interactions. It provides the structural basis for development of new receptor-mimicking compounds, which have enhanced binding affinity with HA33 through their water-displacing moiety. PMID:24631690

  2. Purification of Clostridium botulinum type G progenitor toxin.

    PubMed

    Nukina, M; Mochida, Y; Sakaguchi, S; Sakaguchi, G

    1988-04-01

    Clostridium botulinum type G cultured for 6 days at 30 degrees C in proteose peptone-yeast extract-glucose medium produced toxin of 1.3 x 10(4) LD50/ml. The toxin was precipitated at pH 4.0, extracted with 0.2 M phosphate buffer, pH 6.0, and activated with trypsin. Sonic treatment and trypsinization of the residual precipitate released additional toxin, the toxicity of which corresponded to that detected in whole culture. Activated toxin obtained from the first extract and that from the residual precipitate were combined and purified by salting out, acid precipitation, gel filtration on Sephadex G-200, chromatography on SP-Sephadex, and a second gel filtration on Sephadex G-200. The yield of purified toxin from 10 liters of culture was 22.9 mg an 1.1 X 10(8) mouse ip LD50 with a specific toxicity of 3.0 X 10(7) mouse ip LD50/mg nitrogen. The molecular weight of the toxin was about 500,000, corresponding to that of L toxin of the other types. No M nor LL toxin was detected. PMID:3293334

  3. Purification, crystallization and preliminary X-ray analysis of an HA17–HA70 (HA2–HA3) complex from Clostridium botulinum type C progenitor toxin

    PubMed Central

    Iwasa, Chikako; Tonozuka, Takashi; Shinoda, Masaya; Sagane, Yoshimasa; Niwa, Koichi; Watanabe, Toshihiro; Yoshida, Hiromi; Kamitori, Shigehiro; Takao, Toshifumi; Oguma, Keiji; Nishikawa, Atsushi

    2014-01-01

    The haemagglutinin (HA) complex of Clostridium botulinum type C toxin is composed of three types of subcomponents: HA33, HA17 and HA70 (also known as HA1, HA2 and HA3, respectively). Here, a 260 kDa HA17–HA70 complex was crystallized. His-tagged HA17 and maltose-binding-protein-tagged HA70 were expressed in Escherichia coli and their complex was affinity-purified using a combination of amylose resin chromatography and nickel–nitrilotri­acetic acid agarose chromatography. Diffraction data were collected to 8.0 Å resolution and the crystal belonged to the tetragonal space group P41212. The molecular-replacement solution indicated that one molecule of HA17 was bound to each HA70 monomer. PMID:24419620

  4. Molecular assembly of botulinum neurotoxin progenitor complexes.

    PubMed

    Benefield, Desirée A; Dessain, Scott K; Shine, Nancy; Ohi, Melanie D; Lacy, D Borden

    2013-04-01

    Botulinum neurotoxin (BoNT) is produced by Clostridium botulinum and associates with nontoxic neurotoxin-associated proteins to form high-molecular weight progenitor complexes (PCs). The PCs are required for the oral toxicity of BoNT in the context of food-borne botulism and are thought to protect BoNT from destruction in the gastrointestinal tract and aid in absorption from the gut lumen. The PC can differ in size and protein content depending on the C. botulinum strain. The oral toxicity of the BoNT PC increases as the size of the PC increases, but the molecular architecture of these large complexes and how they contribute to BoNT toxicity have not been elucidated. We have generated 2D images of PCs from strains producing BoNT serotypes A1, B, and E using negative stain electron microscopy and single-particle averaging. The BoNT/A1 and BoNT/B PCs were observed as ovoid-shaped bodies with three appendages, whereas the BoNT/E PC was observed as an ovoid body. Both the BoNT/A1 and BoNT/B PCs showed significant flexibility, and the BoNT/B PC was documented as a heterogeneous population of assembly/disassembly intermediates. We have also determined 3D structures for each serotype using the random conical tilt approach. Crystal structures of the individual proteins were placed into the BoNT/A1 and BoNT/B PC electron density maps to generate unique detailed models of the BoNT PCs. The structures highlight an effective platform that can be engineered for the development of mucosal vaccines and the intestinal absorption of oral biologics. PMID:23509303

  5. Crystallization and preliminary X-ray analysis of the HA3 component of Clostridium botulinum type C progenitor toxin

    SciTech Connect

    Nakamura, Toshio; Tonozuka, Takashi; Kotani, Mao; Obata, Kanae; Oguma, Keiji; Nishikawa, Atsushi

    2007-12-01

    HA3, a 70 kDa haemagglutinating protein, is a precursor form of HA3a and HA3b, the subcomponents of Clostridium botulinum type C 16S progenitor toxin. In this report, recombinant HA3 protein was overexpressed in Escherichia coli, purified and crystallized. HA3, a 70 kDa haemagglutinating protein, is a precursor form of HA3a and HA3b, the subcomponents of Clostridium botulinum type C 16S progenitor toxin. In this report, recombinant HA3 protein was overexpressed in Escherichia coli, purified and crystallized. Diffraction data were collected to 2.6 Å resolution and the crystal belonged to the hexagonal space group P6{sub 3}. Matthews coefficient and self-rotation function calculations indicate that there is probably one molecule of HA3 in the asymmetric unit. A search for heavy-atom derivatives has been undertaken.

  6. Structural Basis of Clostridium perfringens Toxin Complex Formation

    SciTech Connect

    Adams,J.; Gregg, K.; Bayer, E.; Boraston, A.; Smith, S.

    2008-01-01

    The virulent properties of the common human and livestock pathogen Clostridium perfringens are attributable to a formidable battery of toxins. Among these are a number of large and highly modular carbohydrate-active enzymes, including the {mu}-toxin and sialidases, whose catalytic properties are consistent with degradation of the mucosal layer of the human gut, glycosaminoglycans, and other cellular glycans found throughout the body. The conservation of noncatalytic ancillary modules among these enzymes suggests they make significant contributions to the overall functionality of the toxins. Here, we describe the structural basis of an ultra-tight interaction (Ka = 1.44 x 1011 M-1) between the X82 and dockerin modules, which are found throughout numerous C. perfringens carbohydrate-active enzymes. Extensive hydrogen-bonding and van der Waals contacts between the X82 and dockerin modules give rise to the observed high affinity. The {mu}-toxin dockerin module in this complex is positioned {approx}180 relative to the orientation of the dockerin modules on the cohesin module surface within cellulolytic complexes. These observations represent a unique property of these clostridial toxins whereby they can associate into large, noncovalent multitoxin complexes that allow potentiation of the activities of the individual toxins by combining complementary toxin specificities.

  7. Metal Complexes And Free Radical Toxins Produced By Pfiesteria Piscicida

    SciTech Connect

    Moeller, P.D.R.; Beauchesne, K.R.; Huncik, K.M.; Davis, W.C.; Christopher, S.J.; Riggs-Gelasco, P.; Gelasco, A.K.

    2009-06-03

    Metal-containing organic toxins produced by Pfiesteria piscicida were characterized, for the first time, by corroborating data obtained from five distinct instrumental methods: nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy (NMR), inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (ICPMS), liquid chromatography particle beam glow discharge mass spectrometry (LC/PB-GDMS), electron paramagnetic resonance spectroscopy (EPR), and X-ray absorption spectroscopy (XAS). The high toxicity of the metal-containing toxins is due to metal-mediated free radical production. This mode of activity explains the toxicity of Pfiesteria, as well as previously reported difficulty in observing the molecular target, due to the ephemeral nature of radical species. The toxins are highly labile in purified form, maintaining activity for only 2-5 days before all activity is lost. The multiple toxin congeners in active extracts are also susceptible to decomposition in the presence of white light, pH variations, and prolonged heat. These findings represent the first formal isolation and characterization of a radical forming toxic organic-ligated metal complex isolated from estuarine/marine dinoflagellates. These findings add to an increased understanding regarding the active role of metals interacting with biological systems in the estuarine environment, as well as their links and implications to human health.

  8. Metal Complexes and Free Radical Toxins Produced by Pfiesteria piscicida

    SciTech Connect

    Moeller,P.; Beauchesne, K.; Huncik, K.; Davis, W.; Christopher, S.; Riggs-Gelasco, P.; Gelasco, A.

    2007-01-01

    Metal-containing organic toxins produced by Pfiesteria piscicida were characterized, for the first time, by corroborating data obtained from five distinct instrumental methods: nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy (NMR), inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (ICP-MS), liquid chromatography particle beam glow discharge mass spectrometry (LC/PB-GDMS), electron paramagnetic resonance spectroscopy (EPR), and X-ray absorption spectroscopy (XAS). The high toxicity of the metal-containing toxins is due to metal-mediated free radical production. This mode of activity explains the toxicity of Pfiesteria, as well as previously reported difficulty in observing the molecular target, due to the ephemeral nature of radical species. The toxins are highly labile in purified form, maintaining activity for only 2-5 days before all activity is lost. The multiple toxin congeners in active extracts are also susceptible to decomposition in the presence of white light, pH variations, and prolonged heat. These findings represent the first formal isolation and characterization of a radical forming toxic organic-ligated metal complex isolated from estuarine/marine dinoflagellates. These findings add to an increased understanding regarding the active role of metals interacting with biological systems in the estuarine environment, as well as their links and implications to human health.

  9. Animal Toxins: How is Complexity Represented in Databases?

    PubMed

    Jungo, Florence; Estreicher, Anne; Bairoch, Amos; Bougueleret, Lydie; Xenarios, Ioannis

    2010-02-01

    Peptide toxins synthesized by venomous animals have been extensively studied in the last decades. To be useful to the scientific community, this knowledge has been stored, annotated and made easy to retrieve by several databases. The aim of this article is to present what type of information users can access from each database. ArachnoServer and ConoServer focus on spider toxins and cone snail toxins, respectively. UniProtKB, a generalist protein knowledgebase, has an animal toxin-dedicated annotation program that includes toxins from all venomous animals. Finally, the ATDB metadatabase compiles data and annotations from other databases and provides toxin ontology. PMID:22069583

  10. Animal Toxins: How is Complexity Represented in Databases?

    PubMed Central

    Jungo, Florence; Estreicher, Anne; Bairoch, Amos; Bougueleret, Lydie; Xenarios, Ioannis

    2010-01-01

    Peptide toxins synthesized by venomous animals have been extensively studied in the last decades. To be useful to the scientific community, this knowledge has been stored, annotated and made easy to retrieve by several databases. The aim of this article is to present what type of information users can access from each database. ArachnoServer and ConoServer focus on spider toxins and cone snail toxins, respectively. UniProtKB, a generalist protein knowledgebase, has an animal toxin-dedicated annotation program that includes toxins from all venomous animals. Finally, the ATDB metadatabase compiles data and annotations from other databases and provides toxin ontology. PMID:22069583

  11. The Elimination of DNA from the Cry Toxin-DNA Complex Is a Necessary Step in the Mode of Action of the Cry8 Toxin

    PubMed Central

    Ai, Bingjie; Li, Jie; Feng, Dongmei; Li, Feng; Guo, Shuyuan

    2013-01-01

    Several crystal (Cry) proteins are known to occur as DNA-protein complexes. However, the role of the DNA associated with the activated toxin in the mechanism of action of the Cry toxin has long been ignored. Here, we focused on the DNA-activated Cry toxin complex. Both forms of the Cry8Ca2 and Cry8Ea1 toxins, i.e., with or without bound DNA, were separately obtained. Size-exclusion chromatography analysis indicated that the Cry8Ca2 toxin-DNA complex has a tight or compact structure. The Cry8Ca2 toxin-DNA complex is more likely to move toward the air/water interface and is more hydrophobic than the toxin without DNA. Competitive binding assays indicated that the Cry8Ca2 and Cry8Ea1 toxins without DNA specifically bind to the midgut of Anomala corpulenta and Holotrichia parallela larvae, respectively. In contrast, the association of DNA with each toxin might result in the nonspecific recognition of the Cry toxin and its target receptor in the insect midgut. The association of the DNA fragment with the Cry8 toxin was shown to protect the Cry protein from digestion by proteases. Based on our results, we propose an additional step in the mechanism of action of the Cry8 toxin and elucidate the function of the associated DNA as well as the importance of the removal of this DNA for the insecticidal activity of the toxin. PMID:24324685

  12. The elimination of DNA from the Cry toxin-DNA complex is a necessary step in the mode of action of the Cry8 toxin.

    PubMed

    Ai, Bingjie; Li, Jie; Feng, Dongmei; Li, Feng; Guo, Shuyuan

    2013-01-01

    Several crystal (Cry) proteins are known to occur as DNA-protein complexes. However, the role of the DNA associated with the activated toxin in the mechanism of action of the Cry toxin has long been ignored. Here, we focused on the DNA-activated Cry toxin complex. Both forms of the Cry8Ca2 and Cry8Ea1 toxins, i.e., with or without bound DNA, were separately obtained. Size-exclusion chromatography analysis indicated that the Cry8Ca2 toxin-DNA complex has a tight or compact structure. The Cry8Ca2 toxin-DNA complex is more likely to move toward the air/water interface and is more hydrophobic than the toxin without DNA. Competitive binding assays indicated that the Cry8Ca2 and Cry8Ea1 toxins without DNA specifically bind to the midgut of Anomala corpulenta and Holotrichia parallela larvae, respectively. In contrast, the association of DNA with each toxin might result in the nonspecific recognition of the Cry toxin and its target receptor in the insect midgut. The association of the DNA fragment with the Cry8 toxin was shown to protect the Cry protein from digestion by proteases. Based on our results, we propose an additional step in the mechanism of action of the Cry8 toxin and elucidate the function of the associated DNA as well as the importance of the removal of this DNA for the insecticidal activity of the toxin. PMID:24324685

  13. Botulinum toxin A complex exploits intestinal M cells to enter the host and exert neurotoxicity.

    PubMed

    Matsumura, Takuhiro; Sugawara, Yo; Yutani, Masahiro; Amatsu, Sho; Yagita, Hideo; Kohda, Tomoko; Fukuoka, Shin-Ichi; Nakamura, Yutaka; Fukuda, Shinji; Hase, Koji; Ohno, Hiroshi; Fujinaga, Yukako

    2015-01-01

    To cause food-borne botulism, botulinum neurotoxin (BoNT) in the gastrointestinal lumen must traverse the intestinal epithelial barrier. However, the mechanism by which BoNT crosses the intestinal epithelial barrier remains unclear. BoNTs are produced along with one or more non-toxic components, with which they form progenitor toxin complexes (PTCs). Here we show that serotype A1 L-PTC, which has high oral toxicity and makes the predominant contribution to causing illness, breaches the intestinal epithelial barrier from microfold (M) cells via an interaction between haemagglutinin (HA), one of the non-toxic components, and glycoprotein 2 (GP2). HA strongly binds to GP2 expressed on M cells, which do not have thick mucus layers. Susceptibility to orally administered L-PTC is dramatically reduced in M-cell-depleted mice and GP2-deficient (Gp2(-/-)) mice. Our finding provides the basis for the development of novel antitoxin therapeutics and delivery systems for oral biologics. PMID:25687350

  14. Developmental exposure to T-2 toxin reversibly affects postnatal hippocampal neurogenesis and reduces neural stem cells and progenitor cells in mice.

    PubMed

    Tanaka, Takeshi; Abe, Hajime; Kimura, Masayuki; Onda, Nobuhiko; Mizukami, Sayaka; Yoshida, Toshinori; Shibutani, Makoto

    2016-08-01

    To determine the developmental exposure effects of T-2 toxin on postnatal hippocampal neurogenesis, pregnant ICR mice were provided a diet containing T-2 toxin at 0, 1, 3, or 9 ppm from gestation day 6 to day 21 on weaning after delivery. Offspring were maintained through postnatal day (PND) 77 without T-2 toxin exposure. In the hippocampal dentate gyrus of male PND 21 offspring, GFAP(+) and BLBP(+) type-1 stem cells and PAX6(+) and TBR2(+) type-2 progenitor cells decreased in the subgranular zone (SGZ) at 9 and ≥3 ppm, respectively, in parallel with increased apoptosis at ≥3 ppm. In the dentate hilus, reelin(+) γ-aminobutyric acid (GABA)-ergic interneurons increased at 9 ppm, suggesting reflection of neuronal mismigration. T-2 toxin decreased transcript levels of cholinergic and glutamate receptor subunits (Chrna4, Chrnb2 and Gria2) and glutamate transporter (Slc17a6) in the dentate gyrus, suggesting decreased cholinergic signals on hilar GABAergic interneurons innervating type-2 cells and decreased glutamatergic signals on type-1 and type-2 cells. T-2 toxin decreased SGZ cells expressing stem cell factor (SCF) and increased cells accumulating malondialdehydes. Neurogenesis-related changes disappeared on PND 77, suggesting that T-2 toxin reversibly affects neurogenesis by inducing apoptosis of type-1 and type-2 cells with different threshold levels. Decreased cholinergic and glutamatergic signals may decrease type-2 cells at ≥3 ppm. Additionally, decreased SCF/c-Kit interactions and increased oxidative stress may decrease type-1 and type-2 cells at 9 ppm. The no-observed-adverse-effect level for offspring neurogenesis was determined to be 1 ppm (0.14-0.49 mg/kg body weight/day). PMID:26314264

  15. Staphylococcus aureus In Vitro Secretion of Alpha Toxin (hla) Correlates with the Affiliation to Clonal Complexes

    PubMed Central

    Monecke, Stefan; Müller, Elke; Büchler, Joseph; Stieber, Bettina; Ehricht, Ralf

    2014-01-01

    The alpha toxin of Staphylococcus aureus is a pore forming toxin that penetrates host cell membranes causing osmotic swelling, rupture, lysis and subsequently cell death. Haemolysin alpha is toxic to a wide range of different mammalian cells; i.e., neurotoxic, dermonecrotic, haemolytic, and it can cause lethality in a wide variety of animals. In this study, the in vitro alpha toxin production of 648 previously genotyped isolates of S. aureus was measured quantitatively using antibody microarrays. Isolates originated from medical and veterinary settings and were selected in order to represent diverse clonal complexes and defined clinical conditions. Generally, the production of alpha toxin in vitro is related to the clonal complex affiliation. For clonal complexes CC22, CC30, CC45, CC479, CC705 and others, invariably no alpha toxin production was noted under the given in vitro conditions, while others, such as CC1, CC5, CC8, CC15 or CC96 secreted variable or high levels of alpha toxin. There was no correlation between alpha toxin yield and clinical course of the disease, or between alpha toxin yield and host species. PMID:24940872

  16. A Polychaete's powerful punch: venom gland transcriptomics of Glycera reveals a complex cocktail of toxin homologs.

    PubMed

    von Reumont, Björn M; Campbell, Lahcen I; Richter, Sandy; Hering, Lars; Sykes, Dan; Hetmank, Jörg; Jenner, Ronald A; Bleidorn, Christoph

    2014-09-01

    Glycerids are marine annelids commonly known as bloodworms. Bloodworms have an eversible proboscis adorned with jaws connected to venom glands. Bloodworms prey on invertebrates, and it is known that the venom glands produce compounds that can induce toxic effects in animals. Yet, none of these putative toxins has been characterized on a molecular basis. Here we present the transcriptomic profiles of the venom glands of three species of bloodworm, Glycera dibranchiata, Glycera fallax and Glycera tridactyla, as well as the body tissue of G. tridactyla. The venom glands express a complex mixture of transcripts coding for putative toxin precursors. These transcripts represent 20 known toxin classes that have been convergently recruited into animal venoms, as well as transcripts potentially coding for Glycera-specific toxins. The toxins represent five functional categories: Pore-forming and membrane-disrupting toxins, neurotoxins, protease inhibitors, other enzymes, and CAP domain toxins. Many of the transcripts coding for putative Glycera toxins belong to classes that have been widely recruited into venoms, but some are homologs of toxins previously only known from the venoms of scorpaeniform fish and monotremes (stonustoxin-like toxin), turrid gastropods (turripeptide-like peptides), and sea anemones (gigantoxin I-like neurotoxin). This complex mixture of toxin homologs suggests that bloodworms employ venom while predating on macroscopic prey, casting doubt on the previously widespread opinion that G. dibranchiata is a detritivore. Our results further show that researchers should be aware that different assembly methods, as well as different methods of homology prediction, can influence the transcriptomic profiling of venom glands. PMID:25193302

  17. Uremic toxins, oxidative stress, and renal fibrosis: an interwined complex.

    PubMed

    Chao, Chia-Ter; Chiang, Chih-Kang

    2015-03-01

    The prevalence of end-stage renal diseases is currently on the rise globally, and finding the way to curb this tide is urgently needed. Tubulointerstitial fibrosis is a common pathway for essentially all the nephropathy categories known to date, and the manifestations of renal fibrosis include excessive deposition of extracellular matrix with distortion of renal microstructures and functional deterioration. Uremic toxins have been gradually found to play an important role in the development of progressive renal fibrosis, with protein-bound indoxyl sulfate, p-cresol, and p-cresyl sulfate receiving the most attention. However, the contribution of oxidative stress among the pathogenesis of uremic toxins and renal fibrosis has not been evaluated much until recently. In this review, we will discuss about the nature and sources of oxidative stress in the kidney and how uremic toxins use oxidative stress to orchestrate the processes of renal fibrosis. PMID:25511523

  18. Molecular assembly of Clostridium botulinum progenitor M complex of type E

    DOE PAGESBeta

    Eswaramoorthy, Subramaniam; Sun, Jingchuan; Li, Huilin; Singh, Bal Ram; Swaminathan, Subramanyam

    2015-12-07

    Clostridium botulinum neurotoxin (BoNT) is released as a progenitor complex, in association with a non-toxic-non-hemagglutinin protein (NTNH) and other associated proteins. We have determined the crystal structure of M type Progenitor complex of botulinum neurotoxin E [PTC-E(M)], a heterodimer of BoNT and NTNH. The crystal structure reveals that the complex exists as a tight, interlocked heterodimer of BoNT and NTNH. The crystal structure explains the mechanism of molecular assembly of the complex and reveals several acidic clusters at the interface responsible for association at low acidic pH and disassociation at basic/neutral pH. Furthermore, the similarity of the general architecture betweenmore » the PTC-E(M) and the previously determined PTC-A(M) strongly suggests that the progenitor M complexes of all botulinum serotypes may have similar molecular arrangement, although the neurotoxins apparently can take very different conformation when they are released from the M complex.« less

  19. Molecular assembly of Clostridium botulinum progenitor M complex of type E

    SciTech Connect

    Eswaramoorthy, Subramaniam; Sun, Jingchuan; Li, Huilin; Singh, Bal Ram; Swaminathan, Subramanyam

    2015-12-07

    Clostridium botulinum neurotoxin (BoNT) is released as a progenitor complex, in association with a non-toxic-non-hemagglutinin protein (NTNH) and other associated proteins. We have determined the crystal structure of M type Progenitor complex of botulinum neurotoxin E [PTC-E(M)], a heterodimer of BoNT and NTNH. The crystal structure reveals that the complex exists as a tight, interlocked heterodimer of BoNT and NTNH. The crystal structure explains the mechanism of molecular assembly of the complex and reveals several acidic clusters at the interface responsible for association at low acidic pH and disassociation at basic/neutral pH. Furthermore, the similarity of the general architecture between the PTC-E(M) and the previously determined PTC-A(M) strongly suggests that the progenitor M complexes of all botulinum serotypes may have similar molecular arrangement, although the neurotoxins apparently can take very different conformation when they are released from the M complex.

  20. Molecular Assembly of Clostridium botulinum progenitor M complex of type E

    PubMed Central

    Eswaramoorthy, Subramaniam; Sun, Jingchuan; Li, Huilin; Singh, Bal Ram; Swaminathan, Subramanyam

    2015-01-01

    Clostridium botulinum neurotoxin (BoNT) is released as a progenitor complex, in association with a non-toxic-non-hemagglutinin protein (NTNH) and other associated proteins. We have determined the crystal structure of M type Progenitor complex of botulinum neurotoxin E [PTC-E(M)], a heterodimer of BoNT and NTNH. The crystal structure reveals that the complex exists as a tight, interlocked heterodimer of BoNT and NTNH. The crystal structure explains the mechanism of molecular assembly of the complex and reveals several acidic clusters at the interface responsible for association at low acidic pH and disassociation at basic/neutral pH. The similarity of the general architecture between the PTC-E(M) and the previously determined PTC-A(M) strongly suggests that the progenitor M complexes of all botulinum serotypes may have similar molecular arrangement, although the neurotoxins apparently can take very different conformation when they are released from the M complex. PMID:26639353

  1. Molecular Assembly of Clostridium botulinum progenitor M complex of type E.

    PubMed

    Eswaramoorthy, Subramaniam; Sun, Jingchuan; Li, Huilin; Singh, Bal Ram; Swaminathan, Subramanyam

    2015-01-01

    Clostridium botulinum neurotoxin (BoNT) is released as a progenitor complex, in association with a non-toxic-non-hemagglutinin protein (NTNH) and other associated proteins. We have determined the crystal structure of M type Progenitor complex of botulinum neurotoxin E [PTC-E(M)], a heterodimer of BoNT and NTNH. The crystal structure reveals that the complex exists as a tight, interlocked heterodimer of BoNT and NTNH. The crystal structure explains the mechanism of molecular assembly of the complex and reveals several acidic clusters at the interface responsible for association at low acidic pH and disassociation at basic/neutral pH. The similarity of the general architecture between the PTC-E(M) and the previously determined PTC-A(M) strongly suggests that the progenitor M complexes of all botulinum serotypes may have similar molecular arrangement, although the neurotoxins apparently can take very different conformation when they are released from the M complex. PMID:26639353

  2. The ERdj5-Sel1L complex facilitates cholera toxin retrotranslocation.

    PubMed

    Williams, Jeffrey M; Inoue, Takamasa; Banks, Lindsey; Tsai, Billy

    2013-03-01

    Cholera toxin (CT) traffics from the host cell surface to the endoplasmic reticulum (ER), where the toxin's catalytic CTA1 subunit retrotranslocates to the cytosol to induce toxicity. In the ER, CT is captured by the E3 ubiquitin ligase Hrd1 via an undefined mechanism to prepare for retrotranslocation. Using loss-of-function and gain-of-function approaches, we demonstrate that the ER-resident factor ERdj5 promotes CTA1 retrotranslocation, in part, via its J domain. This Hsp70 cochaperone regulates binding between CTA and the ER Hsp70 BiP, a chaperone previously implicated in toxin retrotranslocation. Importantly, ERdj5 interacts with the Hrd1 adaptor Sel1L directly through Sel1L's N-terminal lumenal domain, thereby linking ERdj5 to the Hrd1 complex. Sel1L itself also binds CTA and facilitates toxin retrotranslocation. By contrast, EDEM1 and OS-9, two established Sel1L binding partners, do not play significant roles in CTA1 retrotranslocation. Our results thus identify two ER factors that promote ER-to-cytosol transport of CTA1. They also indicate that ERdj5, by binding to Sel1L, triggers BiP-toxin interaction proximal to the Hrd1 complex. We postulate this scenario enables the Hrd1-associated retrotranslocation machinery to capture the toxin efficiently once the toxin is released from BiP. PMID:23363602

  3. Chemical Derivatization and Purification of Peptide-Toxins for Probing Ion Channel Complexes

    PubMed Central

    Hua, Zhengmao; Kobertz, William R.

    2013-01-01

    Ion channels function as multi-protein complexes made up of ion-conducting α-subunits and regulatory β-subunits. To detect, identify, and quantitate the regulatory β-subunits in functioning K+ channel complexes, we have chemically-derivatized peptide-toxins that specifically react with strategically-placed cysteine residues in the channel complex. Two protein labeling approaches have been developed to derivatize the peptide-toxin, charybdotoxin, with hydrophilic and hydrophobic bismaleimides, and other molecular probes. Using these cysteine-reactive peptide-toxins, we have specifically targeted KCNQ1-KCNE1 K+ channel complexes expressed in both Xenopus oocytes and mammalian cells. The modular design of the reagents should permit this approach to be applied to the many ion channel complexes involved in electrical excitability as well as salt and water homoeostasis. PMID:23494369

  4. “Non-Toxic” Proteins of the Botulinum Toxin Complex Exert In-vivo Toxicity

    PubMed Central

    Miyashita, Shin-Ichiro; Sagane, Yoshimasa; Suzuki, Tomonori; Matsumoto, Takashi; Niwa, Koichi; Watanabe, Toshihiro

    2016-01-01

    The botulinum neurotoxin (BoNT) causes muscle paralysis and is the most potent toxin in nature. BoNT is associated with a complex of auxiliary “Non-Toxic” proteins, which constitute a large-sized toxin complex (L-TC). However, here we report that the “Non-Toxic” complex of serotype D botulinum L-TC, when administered to rats, exerts in-vivo toxicity on small-intestinal villi. Moreover, Serotype C and D of the “Non-Toxic” complex, but not BoNT, induced vacuole-formation in a rat intestinal epithelial cell line (IEC-6), resulting in cell death. Our results suggest that the vacuole was formed in a manner distinct from the mechanism by which Helicobacter pylori vacuolating toxin (VacA) and Vibrio cholerae haemolysin induce vacuolation. We therefore hypothesise that the serotype C and D botulinum toxin complex is a functional hybrid of the neurotoxin and vacuolating toxin (VT) which arose from horizontal gene transfer from an ancestral BoNT-producing bacterium to a hypothetical VT-producing bacterium. PMID:27507612

  5. "Non-Toxic" Proteins of the Botulinum Toxin Complex Exert In-vivo Toxicity.

    PubMed

    Miyashita, Shin-Ichiro; Sagane, Yoshimasa; Suzuki, Tomonori; Matsumoto, Takashi; Niwa, Koichi; Watanabe, Toshihiro

    2016-01-01

    The botulinum neurotoxin (BoNT) causes muscle paralysis and is the most potent toxin in nature. BoNT is associated with a complex of auxiliary "Non-Toxic" proteins, which constitute a large-sized toxin complex (L-TC). However, here we report that the "Non-Toxic" complex of serotype D botulinum L-TC, when administered to rats, exerts in-vivo toxicity on small-intestinal villi. Moreover, Serotype C and D of the "Non-Toxic" complex, but not BoNT, induced vacuole-formation in a rat intestinal epithelial cell line (IEC-6), resulting in cell death. Our results suggest that the vacuole was formed in a manner distinct from the mechanism by which Helicobacter pylori vacuolating toxin (VacA) and Vibrio cholerae haemolysin induce vacuolation. We therefore hypothesise that the serotype C and D botulinum toxin complex is a functional hybrid of the neurotoxin and vacuolating toxin (VT) which arose from horizontal gene transfer from an ancestral BoNT-producing bacterium to a hypothetical VT-producing bacterium. PMID:27507612

  6. The occurrence of Photorhabdus-like toxin complexes in Bacillus thuringiensis

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Recently, genomic sequencing of a Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt) isolate from our collection revealed the presence of an apparent operon encoding an insecticidal toxin complex (Tca) similar to that first described from the entomopathogen Photorhabdus luminescens. To determine whether these genes are w...

  7. The Protective Antigen Component of Anthrax Toxin Forms Functional Octameric Complexes

    PubMed Central

    Kintzer, Alexander F.; Thoren, Katie L.; Sterling, Harry J.; Dong, Ken C.; Feld, Geoffrey K.; Tang, Iok I.; Zhang, Teri T.; Williams, Evan R.; Berger, James M.; Krantz, Bryan A.

    2009-01-01

    The assembly of bacterial toxins and virulence factors is critical to their function, but the regulation of assembly during infection has not been studied. We begin to address this question using anthrax toxin as a model. The protective antigen (PA) component of the toxin assembles into ring-shaped homooligomers that bind the two other enzyme components of the toxin, lethal factor (LF) and edema factor (EF), to form toxic complexes. To disrupt the host, these toxic complexes are endocytosed, such that the PA oligomer forms a membrane-spanning channel that LF and EF translocate through to enter the cytosol. We show using single-channel electrophysiology that PA channels contain two populations of conductance states, which correspond with two different PA pre-channel oligomers observed by electron microscopy—the well-described heptamer and a novel octamer. Mass spectrometry demonstrates that the PA octamer binds four LFs, and assembly routes leading to the octamer are populated with even-numbered, dimeric and tetrameric, PA intermediates. Both heptameric and octameric PA complexes can translocate LF and EF with similar rates and efficiencies. Here we also report a 3.2-Å crystal structure of the PA octamer. The octamer comprises ∼20−30% of the oligomers on cells, but outside of the cell, the octamer is more stable than the heptamer under physiological pH. Thus the PA octamer is a physiological, stable, and active assembly state capable of forming lethal toxins that may withstand the hostile conditions encountered in the bloodstream. This assembly mechanism may provide a novel means to control cytotoxicity. PMID:19627991

  8. Electron microscopy of complexes of isolated acetylcholine receptor, biotinyl-toxin, and avidin

    SciTech Connect

    Holtzman, E.; Wise, D.; Wall, J.; Karlin, A.

    1982-01-01

    The principal curarimimetic toxin of Naja naja siamensis derivatized with biothinyl groups binds specifically both to acetylcholine receptor, isolated from Torpedo californica electric tissue, and to avidin. Isolated complexes of receptor monomer or dimer, biotinyl-toxin, and avidin were negatively stained and examined in the scanning transmission electron microscope. We measured the angle made by the radius to each avidin bound at the periphery of a monomeric unit in dimer to the axis connecting the centers of the monomers, starting at the crosslink between the monomers. We infer from the distribution of these angles that one toxin binding site is located in the range of 45/sup 0/ to 85/sup 0/ and another at about 100/sup 0/ further from the crosslink between the monomers. Because it is known that there are two toxin binding sites per monomer, associated with the two ..cap alpha.. chains, the bound avidins presumably point to portions of the ..cap alpha.. chains, indicating their positions relative to that portion of the delta chain located at the crosslink between monomers in dimer.

  9. Purification of the Yersinia entomophaga Yen-TC Toxin Complex Using Size Exclusion Chromatography.

    PubMed

    Jones, Sandra A; Hurst, Mark R H

    2016-01-01

    The Yersinia entomophaga toxin complex (Yen-TC) is the bacterium's main virulence determinant. Because of its high insect activity, methods were developed to allow the routine isolation and purification of Yen-TC from an overnight bacterial culture using size exclusion chromatography. Here we outline an overnight purification procedure using a 100-ml culture volume, where approximately 2 mg of Yen-TC, with an approximate purity of 95-98 %, can be routinely obtained. PMID:27565490

  10. Topology of feather melanocyte progenitor niche allows complex pigment patterns to emerge.

    PubMed

    Lin, S J; Foley, J; Jiang, T X; Yeh, C Y; Wu, P; Foley, A; Yen, C M; Huang, Y C; Cheng, H C; Chen, C F; Reeder, B; Jee, S H; Widelitz, R B; Chuong, C M

    2013-06-21

    Color patterns of bird plumage affect animal behavior and speciation. Diverse patterns are present in different species and within the individual. Here, we study the cellular and molecular basis of feather pigment pattern formation. Melanocyte progenitors are distributed as a horizontal ring in the proximal follicle, sending melanocytes vertically up into the epithelial cylinder, which gradually emerges as feathers grow. Different pigment patterns form by modulating the presence, arrangement, or differentiation of melanocytes. A layer of peripheral pulp further regulates pigmentation via patterned agouti expression. Lifetime feather cyclic regeneration resets pigment patterns for physiological needs. Thus, the evolution of stem cell niche topology allows complex pigment patterning through combinatorial co-option of simple regulatory mechanisms. PMID:23618762

  11. A Polychaete’s Powerful Punch: Venom Gland Transcriptomics of Glycera Reveals a Complex Cocktail of Toxin Homologs

    PubMed Central

    von Reumont, Björn M.; Richter, Sandy; Hering, Lars; Sykes, Dan; Hetmank, Jörg; Jenner, Ronald A.; Bleidorn, Christoph

    2014-01-01

    Glycerids are marine annelids commonly known as bloodworms. Bloodworms have an eversible proboscis adorned with jaws connected to venom glands. Bloodworms prey on invertebrates, and it is known that the venom glands produce compounds that can induce toxic effects in animals. Yet, none of these putative toxins has been characterized on a molecular basis. Here we present the transcriptomic profiles of the venom glands of three species of bloodworm, Glycera dibranchiata, Glycera fallax and Glycera tridactyla, as well as the body tissue of G. tridactyla. The venom glands express a complex mixture of transcripts coding for putative toxin precursors. These transcripts represent 20 known toxin classes that have been convergently recruited into animal venoms, as well as transcripts potentially coding for Glycera-specific toxins. The toxins represent five functional categories: Pore-forming and membrane-disrupting toxins, neurotoxins, protease inhibitors, other enzymes, and CAP domain toxins. Many of the transcripts coding for putative Glycera toxins belong to classes that have been widely recruited into venoms, but some are homologs of toxins previously only known from the venoms of scorpaeniform fish and monotremes (stonustoxin-like toxin), turrid gastropods (turripeptide-like peptides), and sea anemones (gigantoxin I-like neurotoxin). This complex mixture of toxin homologs suggests that bloodworms employ venom while predating on macroscopic prey, casting doubt on the previously widespread opinion that G. dibranchiata is a detritivore. Our results further show that researchers should be aware that different assembly methods, as well as different methods of homology prediction, can influence the transcriptomic profiling of venom glands. PMID:25193302

  12. Identification of the interaction region between hemagglutinin components of the botulinum toxin complex.

    PubMed

    Suzuki, Tomonori; Miyashita, Shin-Ichiro; Hayashi, Shintaro; Miyata, Keita; Inui, Ken; Kondo, Yosuke; Miyazaki, Satoru; Ohyama, Tohru; Niwa, Koichi; Watanabe, Toshihiro; Sagane, Yoshimasa

    2014-04-01

    The large toxin complex (L-TC) produced by Clostridium botulinum is formed from the M-TC (BoNT/NTNHA complex) by conjugation of M-TC with HA-33/HA-17 trimer consists of two HA-33 proteins and a single HA-17 protein. This association is mediated by HA-70, which interacts with HA-17. The current study aims to identify the regions of the HA-70 molecule that adhere to the HA-33/HA-17 complex. Products from limited proteolysis of HA-70 were resolved by SDS-PAGE and transferred onto PVDF membranes, where they were probed with HA-33/HA-17 in a far-western blot. Among the HA-70 fragments, HA-33/HA-17 bound to those containing at least the C-terminal half of the HA-70 molecule, but not those carrying the N-terminal half. Additional docking simulation analysis indicated that the HA-70 region Gln420-Tyr575 is responsible for binding to HA-17, which is consistent with the far-western blot data. The findings here reveal additional details concerning the three-dimensional structure of the functional HA sub-complex in the botulinum toxin complex. PMID:24472509

  13. Interaction between mosquito-larvicidal Lysinibacillus sphaericus binary toxin components: analysis of complex formation.

    PubMed

    Kale, Avinash; Hire, Ramesh S; Hadapad, Ashok B; D'Souza, Stanislaus F; Kumar, Vinay

    2013-11-01

    The two components (BinA and BinB) of Lysinibacillus sphaericus binary toxin together are highly toxic to Culex and Anopheles mosquito larvae, and have been employed world-wide to control mosquito borne diseases. Upon binding to the membrane receptor an oligomeric form (BinA2.BinB2) of the binary toxin is expected to play role in pore formation. It is not clear if these two proteins interact in solution as well, in the absence of receptor. The interactions between active forms of BinA and BinB polypeptides were probed in solution using size-exclusion chromatography, pull-down assay, surface plasmon resonance, circular dichroism, and by chemically crosslinking BinA and BinB components. We demonstrate that the two proteins interact weakly with first association and dissociation rate constants of 4.5×10(3) M(-1) s(-1) and 0.8 s(-1), resulting in conformational change, most likely, in toxic BinA protein that could kinetically favor membrane translocation of the active oligomer. The weak interactions between the two toxin components could be stabilized by glutaraldehyde crosslinking. The cross-linked complex, interestingly, showed maximal Culex larvicidal activity (LC50 value of 1.59 ng mL(-1)) reported so far for combination of BinA/BinB components, and thus is an attractive option for development of new bio-pesticides for control of mosquito borne vector diseases. PMID:23974012

  14. The 1.8 Å Cholix Toxin Crystal Structure in Complex with NAD+ and Evidence for a New Kinetic Model

    PubMed Central

    Fieldhouse, Robert J.; Jørgensen, René; Lugo, Miguel R.; Merrill, A. Rod

    2012-01-01

    Certain Vibrio cholerae strains produce cholix, a potent protein toxin that has diphthamide-specific ADP-ribosyltransferase activity against eukaryotic elongation factor 2. Here we present a 1.8 Å crystal structure of cholix in complex with its natural substrate, nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NAD+). We also substituted hallmark catalytic residues by site-directed mutagenesis and analyzed both NAD+ binding and ADP-ribosyltransferase activity using a fluorescence-based assay. These data are the basis for a new kinetic model of cholix toxin activity. Further, the new structural data serve as a reference for continuing inhibitor development for this toxin class. PMID:22535961

  15. Attomolar Detection of Botulinum Toxin Type A in Complex Biological Matrices

    PubMed Central

    Bagramyan, Karine; Barash, Jason R.; Arnon, Stephen S.; Kalkum, Markus

    2008-01-01

    Background A highly sensitive, rapid and cost efficient method that can detect active botulinum neurotoxin (BoNT) in complex biological samples such as foods or serum is desired in order to 1) counter the potential bioterrorist threat 2) enhance food safety 3) enable future pharmacokinetic studies in medical applications that utilize BoNTs. Methodology/Principal Findings Here we describe a botulinum neurotoxin serotype A assay with a large immuno-sorbent surface area (BoNT/A ALISSA) that captures a low number of toxin molecules and measures their intrinsic metalloprotease activity with a fluorogenic substrate. In direct comparison with the “gold standard” mouse bioassay, the ALISSA is four to five orders of magnitudes more sensitive and considerably faster. Our method reaches attomolar sensitivities in serum, milk, carrot juice, and in the diluent fluid used in the mouse assay. ALISSA has high specificity for the targeted type A toxin when tested against alternative proteases including other BoNT serotypes and trypsin, and it detects the holotoxin as well as the multi-protein complex form of BoNT/A. The assay was optimized for temperature, substrate concentration, size and volume proportions of the immuno-sorbent matrix, enrichment and reaction times. Finally, a kinetic model is presented that is consistent with the observed improvement in sensitivity. Conclusions/Significance The sensitivity, specificity, speed and simplicity of the BoNT ALISSA should make this method attractive for diagnostic, biodefense and pharmacological applications. PMID:18446228

  16. Structural plasticity and dynamic selectivity of acid-sensing ion channel-spider toxin complexes

    SciTech Connect

    Baconguis, Isabelle; Gouaux, Eric

    2012-07-29

    Acid-sensing ion channels (ASICs) are voltage-independent, amiloride-sensitive channels involved in diverse physiological processes ranging from nociception to taste. Despite the importance of ASICs in physiology, we know little about the mechanism of channel activation. Here we show that psalmotoxin activates non-selective and Na+-selective currents in chicken ASIC1a at pH7.25 and 5.5, respectively. Crystal structures of ASIC1a–psalmotoxin complexes map the toxin binding site to the extracellular domain and show how toxin binding triggers an expansion of the extracellular vestibule and stabilization of the open channel pore. At pH7.25 the pore is approximately 10Å in diameter, whereas at pH5.5 the pore is largely hydrophobic and elliptical in cross-section with dimensions of approximately 5 by 7Å, consistent with a barrier mechanism for ion selectivity. These studies define mechanisms for activation of ASICs, illuminate the basis for dynamic ion selectivity and provide the blueprints for new therapeutic agents.

  17. X-ray structures of AMPA receptor-cone snail toxin complexes illuminate activation mechanism.

    PubMed

    Chen, Lei; Dürr, Katharina L; Gouaux, Eric

    2014-08-29

    AMPA-sensitive glutamate receptors are crucial to the structural and dynamic properties of the brain, to the development and function of the central nervous system, and to the treatment of neurological conditions from depression to cognitive impairment. However, the molecular principles underlying AMPA receptor activation have remained elusive. We determined multiple x-ray crystal structures of the GluA2 AMPA receptor in complex with a Conus striatus cone snail toxin, a positive allosteric modulator, and orthosteric agonists, at 3.8 to 4.1 angstrom resolution. We show how the toxin acts like a straightjacket on the ligand-binding domain (LBD) "gating ring," restraining the domains via both intra- and interdimer cross-links such that agonist-induced closure of the LBD "clamshells" is transduced into an irislike expansion of the gating ring. By structural analysis of activation-enhancing mutants, we show how the expansion of the LBD gating ring results in pulling forces on the M3 helices that, in turn, are coupled to ion channel gating. PMID:25103405

  18. Purification and characterization of neurotoxin complex from a dual toxin gene containing Clostridium botulinum strain PS-5

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Botulinum neurotoxins (BoNTs) are produced as a toxin complex (TC) which consists of neurotoxin (NT) and neurotoxin associated proteins (NAPs). The characterization of NT in its native state is an essential step for developing diagnostics and therapeutic countermeasures against botulism. The presenc...

  19. Efficacy and Safety of a New Botulinum Toxin Type A Free of Complexing Proteins.

    PubMed

    Oh, Hyun-Mi; Park, Joo Hyun; Song, Dae Heon; Chung, Myung Eun

    2016-01-01

    MT10107 is botulinum neurotoxin type A derived drug which utilizes the 150 kDa portion without complexing proteins and human serum albumin contents. To evaluate the efficacy and the safety of MT10107, it was compared with onabotulinumtoxinA in this double-blind, randomized controlled trial. Twenty-five healthy males received a randomly selected dose of MT10107 into the extensor digitorum brevis (EDB) muscle of one foot, and an equivalent dose of onabotulinumtoxinA (BOTOX) was injected into the contralateral EDB muscle. While efficacy of the administered substance was determined by measuring paretic effects on the EDB, the local spread of toxin effects was evaluated by the paretic effects on the nearby abductor hallucis (AH) and abductor digiti quinti (ADQ) muscles. Paretic effects were defined as the percentage of reduction of the compound muscle action potential (CMAP) amplitudes, measured at 14, 30, 90 days after the injection, compared to the baseline value. Intergroup (MT10107 and onabotulinumtoxinA) differences were not significant in the percentage reduction of the amplitudes in the EDB muscles. In this study, there was no significant difference in efficacy and safety between the two test drugs. MT10107 may be effective and safe as much as onabotulinumtoxinA to produce the desired paretic effect. PMID:26712786

  20. Lumbar Sympathetic Block with Botulinum Toxin Type B for Complex Regional Pain Syndrome: A Case Study.

    PubMed

    Choi, Eunjoo; Cho, Chan Woo; Kim, Hye Young; Lee, Pyung Bok; Nahm, Francis Sahngun

    2015-01-01

    Lumbar sympathetic block (LSB) is an effective method for relief of sympathetically mediated pain in the lower extremities. To prolong the sympathetic blockade, sympathetic destruction with alcohol or radiofrequency has been used. The pre-ganglionic sympathetic nerves are cholinergic, and botulinum toxin (BTX) has been found to inhibit the release of acetylcholine at the cholinergic nerve terminals. Moreover, BTX type B (BTX-B) is more convenient to use than BTX type A. Based on these findings, we performed LSB on the 2 patients with complex regional pain syndrome (CRPS) in the lower extremity. Levobupivacaine 0.25% 5 mL mixed with BTX-B 5,000 IU was given under fluoroscopic guidance. Two months after LSB with BTX-B, pain intensity and the Leeds assessment of neuropathic symptoms and signs (LANSS) score were significantly reduced. Allodynia and coldness disappeared and skin color came back to normal. In conclusion, BTX-B can produce an efficacious and durable sympathetic blocking effect on patients with CRPS. PMID:26431145

  1. Homologues of insecticidal toxin complex genes within a genomic island in the marine bacterium Vibrio parahaemolyticus.

    PubMed

    Tang, Kathy F J; Lightner, Donald V

    2014-10-01

    Three insecticidal toxin complex (tc)-like genes were identified in Vibrio parahaemolyticus 13-028/A3, which can cause acute hepatopancreatic necrosis disease in penaeid shrimp. The three genes are a tcdA-like gene (7710 bp), predicted to code for a 284-kDa protein; a tcdB-like gene (4272 bp), predicted to code for a 158-kDa protein; and a tccC3-like gene (2916 bp), predicted to encode a 107-kDa protein. All three predicted proteins contain conserved domains that are characteristic of their respective Tc proteins. By RT-PCR, all three tc-like genes were found to be expressed in this bacterium. Through genome walking and the use of PCR to join contigs surrounding these three genes, a genomic island (87 712 bp, named tc-GIvp) was found on chromosome II localized next to the tRNA Gly. The GC content of this island, which is not found in other Vibrio species, is 40%. The tc-GIvp is characterized to have 60 ORFs encoding regulatory or virulence factors. These include a type 6 secretion protein VgrG, EAL domain-containing proteins, fimbriae subunits and assembly proteins, invasin-like proteins, peptidoglycan-binding proteins, and Tc proteins. The tc-GIvp also contains 21 transposase genes, suggesting that it was acquired through horizontal transfer from other organisms. PMID:25272969

  2. Efficacy and Safety of a New Botulinum Toxin Type A Free of Complexing Proteins

    PubMed Central

    Oh, Hyun-Mi; Park, Joo Hyun; Song, Dae Heon; Chung, Myung Eun

    2015-01-01

    MT10107 is botulinum neurotoxin type A derived drug which utilizes the 150 kDa portion without complexing proteins and human serum albumin contents. To evaluate the efficacy and the safety of MT10107, it was compared with onabotulinumtoxinA in this double-blind, randomized controlled trial. Twenty-five healthy males received a randomly selected dose of MT10107 into the extensor digitorum brevis (EDB) muscle of one foot, and an equivalent dose of onabotulinumtoxinA (BOTOX) was injected into the contralateral EDB muscle. While efficacy of the administered substance was determined by measuring paretic effects on the EDB, the local spread of toxin effects was evaluated by the paretic effects on the nearby abductor hallucis (AH) and abductor digiti quinti (ADQ) muscles. Paretic effects were defined as the percentage of reduction of the compound muscle action potential (CMAP) amplitudes, measured at 14, 30, 90 days after the injection, compared to the baseline value. Intergroup (MT10107 and onabotulinumtoxinA) differences were not significant in the percentage reduction of the amplitudes in the EDB muscles. In this study, there was no significant difference in efficacy and safety between the two test drugs. MT10107 may be effective and safe as much as onabotulinumtoxinA to produce the desired paretic effect. PMID:26712786

  3. The VapBC1 toxin-antitoxin complex from Mycobacterium tuberculosis: purification, crystallization and X-ray diffraction analysis.

    PubMed

    Lu, Zuokun; Wang, Han; Zhang, Aili; Tan, Yusheng

    2016-06-01

    Mycobacterium tuberculosis, a major human pathogen, encodes at least 88 toxin-antitoxin (TA) systems. Remarkably, more than half of these modules belong to the VapBC family. Under normal growth conditions, the toxicity of the toxin VapC is neutralized by the protein antitoxin VapB. When bacteria face an unfavourable environment, the antitoxin is degraded and the free toxin VapC targets important cellular processes in order to inhibit cell growth. TA systems function in many biological processes, such as in the stringent response, in biofilm formation and in drug tolerance. To explore the structure of the VapBC1 complex, the toxin VapC1 and the antitoxin VapB1 were separately cloned, co-expressed and crystallized. The best crystal was obtained using a crystallization solution consisting of optimized solution with commercial sparse-matrix screen solutions as additives. The crystal diffracted to a resolution of 2.7 Å and belonged to space group P21, with unit-cell parameters a = 59.3, b = 106.7, c = 250.0 Å, β = 93.75°. PMID:27303903

  4. Structure of the Proteus vulgaris HigB-(HigA)2-HigB toxin-antitoxin complex.

    PubMed

    Schureck, Marc A; Maehigashi, Tatsuya; Miles, Stacey J; Marquez, Jhomar; Cho, Shein Ei; Erdman, Rachel; Dunham, Christine M

    2014-01-10

    Bacterial toxin-antitoxin (TA) systems regulate key cellular processes to promote cell survival during periods of stress. During steady-state cell growth, antitoxins typically interact with their cognate toxins to inhibit activity presumably by preventing substrate recognition. We solved two x-ray crystal structures of the Proteus vulgaris tetrameric HigB-(HigA)2-HigB TA complex and found that, unlike most other TA systems, the antitoxin HigA makes minimal interactions with toxin HigB. HigB adopts a RelE family tertiary fold containing a highly conserved concave surface where we predict its active site is located. HigA does not cover the solvent-exposed HigB active site, suggesting that, in general, toxin inhibition is not solely mediated by active site hindrance by its antitoxin. Each HigA monomer contains a helix-turn-helix motif that binds to its own DNA operator to repress transcription during normal cellular growth. This is distinct from antitoxins belonging to other superfamilies that typically only form DNA-binding motifs upon dimerization. We further show that disruption of the HigB-(HigA)2-HigB tetramer to a HigBA heterodimer ablates operator binding. Taken together, our biochemical and structural studies elucidate the novel molecular details of the HigBA TA system. PMID:24257752

  5. The Role of TcdB and TccC Subunits in Secretion of the Photorhabdus Tcd Toxin Complex

    PubMed Central

    Yang, Guowei; Waterfield, Nicholas R.

    2013-01-01

    The Toxin Complex (TC) is a large multi-subunit toxin encoded by a range of bacterial pathogens. The best-characterized examples are from the insect pathogens Photorhabdus, Xenorhabdus and Yersinia. They consist of three large protein subunits, designated A, B and C that assemble in a 5∶1∶1 stoichiometry. Oral toxicity to a range of insects means that some have the potential to be developed as pest control technology. The three subunit proteins do not encode any recognisable export sequences and as such little progress has been made in understanding their secretion. We have developed heterologous TC production and secretion models in E. coli and used them to ascribe functions to different domains of the crucial B+C sub-complex. We have determined that the B and C subunits use a secretion mechanism that is either encoded by the proteins themselves or employ an as yet undefined system common to laboratory strains of E. coli. We demonstrate that both the N-terminal domains of the B and C subunits are required for secretion of the whole complex. We propose a model whereby the N-terminus of the C-subunit toxin exports the B+C sub-complex across the inner membrane while that of the B-subunit allows passage across the outer membrane. We also demonstrate that even in the absence of the B-subunit, that the C-subunit can also facilitate secretion of the larger A-subunit. The recognition of this novel export system is likely to be of importance to future protein secretion studies. Finally, the identification of homologues of B and C subunits in diverse bacterial pathogens, including Burkholderia and Pseudomonas, suggests that these toxins are likely to be important in a range of different hosts, including man. PMID:24098116

  6. Top-down label-free LC-MALDI analysis of the peptidome during neural progenitor cell differentiation reveals complexity in cytoskeletal protein dynamics and identifies progenitor cell markers.

    PubMed

    Maltman, Daniel J; Brand, Sven; Belau, Eckhard; Paape, Rainer; Suckau, Detlev; Przyborski, Stefan A

    2011-10-01

    In the field of stem cell research, there is a strong requirement for the discovery of new biomarkers that more accurately define stem and progenitor cell populations, as well as their differentiated derivatives. The very-low-molecular-weight (<5 kDa) proteome/peptidome remains a poorly investigated but potentially rich source of cellular biomarkers. Here we describe a label-free LC-MALDI-TOF/TOF quantification approach to screen the very-low-molecular-weight proteome, i.e. the peptidome, of neural progenitor cells and derivative populations to identify potential neural stem/progenitor cell biomarkers. Twelve different proteins were identified on the basis of MS/MS analysis of peptides, which displayed differential abundance between undifferentiated and differentiated cultures. These proteins included major cytoskeletal components such as nestin, vimentin, and glial fibrillary acidic protein, which are all associated with neural development. Other cytoskeletal proteins identified were dihydropyrimidinase-related protein 2, prothymosin (thymosin α-1), and thymosin β-10. These findings highlight novel stem cell/progenitor cell marker candidates and demonstrate proteomic complexity, which underlies the limitations of major intermediate filament proteins long established as neural markers. PMID:21761558

  7. Distribution of dystrophin- and utrophin-associated protein complexes (DAPC/UAPC) in human hematopoietic stem/progenitor cells.

    PubMed

    Teniente-De Alba, Carmen; Martínez-Vieyra, Ivette; Vivanco-Calixto, Raúl; Galván, Iván J; Cisneros, Bulmaro; Cerecedo, Doris

    2011-10-01

    Hematopoietic stem cells (HSC) are defined by their cardinal properties, such as sustained proliferation, multilineage differentiation, and self-renewal, which give rise to a hierarchy of progenitor populations with more restricted potential lineage, ultimately leading to the production of all types of mature blood cells. HSC are anchored by cell adhesion molecules to their specific microenvironment, thus regulating their cell cycle, while cell migration is essentially required for seeding the HSC of the fetal bone marrow (BM) during development as well as in adult BM homeostasis. The dystrophin-associated protein complex (DAPC) is a large group of membrane-associated proteins linking the cytoskeleton to the extracellular matrix and exhibiting scaffolding, adhesion, and signaling roles in muscle and non-muscle cells including mature blood cells. Because adhesion and migration are mechanisms that influence the fate of the HSC, we explored the presence and the feasible role of DAPC. In this study, we characterized the pattern expression by immunoblot technique and, by confocal microscopy analysis, the cellular distribution of dystrophin and utrophin gene products, and the dystrophin-associated proteins (α-, β-dystroglycan, α-syntrophin, α-dystrobrevin) in relation to actin filaments in freshly isolated CD34+ cells from umbilical cord blood. Immunoprecipitation assays demonstrated the presence of Dp71d/Dp71Δ110m ∼DAPC and Up400/Up140∼DAPC. The subcellular distribution of the two DAPC in actin-based structures suggests their dynamic participation in adhesion and cell migration. In addition, the particular protein pattern expression found in hematopoietic stem/progenitor cells might be indicative of their feasible participation during differentiation. PMID:21623922

  8. Structure of a pore-blocking toxin in complex with a eukaryotic voltage-dependent K+ channel

    PubMed Central

    Banerjee, Anirban; Lee, Alice; Campbell, Ernest; MacKinnon, Roderick

    2013-01-01

    Pore-blocking toxins inhibit voltage-dependent K+ channels (Kv channels) by plugging the ion-conduction pathway. We have solved the crystal structure of paddle chimera, a Kv channel in complex with charybdotoxin (CTX), a pore-blocking toxin. The toxin binds to the extracellular pore entryway without producing discernable alteration of the selectivity filter structure and is oriented to project its Lys27 into the pore. The most extracellular K+ binding site (S1) is devoid of K+ electron-density when wild-type CTX is bound, but K+ density is present to some extent in a Lys27Met mutant. In crystals with Cs+ replacing K+, S1 electron-density is present even in the presence of Lys27, a finding compatible with the differential effects of Cs+ vs K+ on CTX affinity for the channel. Together, these results show that CTX binds to a K+ channel in a lock and key manner and interacts directly with conducting ions inside the selectivity filter. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.00594.001 PMID:23705070

  9. Complex Toxin Profile of French Mediterranean Ostreopsis cf. ovata Strains, Seafood Accumulation and Ovatoxins Prepurification

    PubMed Central

    Brissard, Charline; Herrenknecht, Christine; Séchet, Véronique; Hervé, Fabienne; Pisapia, Francesco; Harcouet, Jocelyn; Lémée, Rodolphe; Chomérat, Nicolas; Hess, Philipp; Amzil, Zouher

    2014-01-01

    Ostreopsis cf. ovata produces palytoxin analogues including ovatoxins (OVTXs) and a putative palytoxin (p-PLTX), which can accumulate in marine organisms and may possibly lead to food intoxication. However, purified ovatoxins are not widely available and their toxicities are still unknown. The aim of this study was to improve understanding of the ecophysiology of Ostreopsis cf. ovata and its toxin production as well as to optimize the purification process for ovatoxin. During Ostreopsis blooms in 2011 and 2012 in Villefranche-sur-Mer (France, NW Mediterranean Sea), microalgae epiphytic cells and marine organisms were collected and analyzed both by LC-MS/MS and hemolysis assay. Results obtained with these two methods were comparable, suggesting ovatoxins have hemolytic properties. An average of 223 μg·kg−1 of palytoxin equivalent of whole flesh was found, thus exceeding the threshold of 30 μg·kg−1 in shellfish recommended by the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA). Ostreopsis cells showed the same toxin profile both in situ and in laboratory culture, with ovatoxin-a (OVTX-a) being the most abundant analogue (~50%), followed by OVTX-b (~15%), p-PLTX (12%), OVTX-d (8%), OVTX-c (5%) and OVTX-e (4%). Ostreopsis cf. ovata produced up to 2 g of biomass per L of culture, with a maximum concentration of 300 pg PLTX equivalent cell−1. Thus, an approximate amount of 10 mg of PLTX-group toxins may be produced with 10 L of this strain. Toxin extracts obtained from collected biomass were purified using different techniques such as liquid-liquid partition or size exclusion. Among these methods, open-column chromatography with Sephadex LH20 phase yielded the best results with a cleanup efficiency of 93% and recovery of about 85%, representing an increase of toxin percentage by 13 fold. Hence, this purification step should be incorporated into future isolation exercises. PMID:24828292

  10. Two conformational states of the membrane-associated Bacillus thuringiensis Cry4Ba {delta}-endotoxin complex revealed by electron crystallography: Implications for toxin-pore formation

    SciTech Connect

    Ounjai, Puey; Unger, Vinzenz M.; Sigworth, Fred J.; Angsuthanasombat, Chanan

    2007-10-05

    The insecticidal nature of Cry {delta}-endotoxins produced by Bacillus thuringiensis is generally believed to be caused by their ability to form lytic pores in the midgut cell membrane of susceptible insect larvae. Here we have analyzed membrane-associated structures of the 65-kDa dipteran-active Cry4Ba toxin by electron crystallography. The membrane-associated toxin complex was crystallized in the presence of DMPC via detergent dialysis. Depending upon the charge of the adsorbed surface, 2D crystals of the oligomeric toxin complex have been captured in two distinct conformations. The projection maps of those crystals have been generated at 17 A resolution. Both complexes appeared to be trimeric; as in one crystal form, its projection structure revealed a symmetrical pinwheel-like shape with virtually no depression in the middle of the complex. The other form revealed a propeller-like conformation displaying an obvious hole in the center region, presumably representing the toxin-induced pore. These crystallographic data thus demonstrate for the first time that the 65-kDa activated Cry4Ba toxin in association with lipid membranes could exist in at least two different trimeric conformations, conceivably implying the closed and open states of the pore.

  11. Field evaluation against Aedes aegypti larvae of aluminum-carboxymethylcellulose-encapsulated spore-toxin complex formulation of Bacillus thuringiensis serovar israelensis.

    PubMed

    Aguilar-Meza, O; Ramírez-Suero, M; Bernal, J S; Ramírez-Lepe, M

    2010-06-01

    The insecticidal activity after field exposure of an aluminum-carboxymethylcellulose microencapsulated formulation of Bacillus thuringiensis israelensis (Bti) spore-toxin complex, with malachite green as photoprotective agent, was evaluated using third-instar Aedes aegypti (L.) larvae in laboratory bioassays in Veracruz, México. Four insecticide treatments and an untreated control were compared at low and high doses over 96 d of field exposure under full sun or full shade conditions: 1) microencapsulated Bti spore-toxin complex, 2) nonmicroencapsulated Bti spore-toxin complex, 3) a commercial Bti formulation, 4) a commercial formulation of temephos, and 5) an untreated control. The low and high doses corresponded to the LC50 and LC90 concentrations for the Bti insecticides and to 0.5 and 1.0 mg/liter for temephos; the corresponding values for the microencapsulated Bti and commercial Bti, estimated in this study, were 0.061 and 0.14 mg/ml and 0.13 and 0.30 mg/ml, respectively. Overall, the study demonstrated that microencapsulation with aluminum-carboxymethylcellulose improved the activity against Ae. aegypti larvae of B. t. israelensis spore-toxin complex over that of a nonmicroencapsulated spore-toxin complex and that the improvement was particularly important under full sun and high dose. Moreover, insecticidal activity of the microencapsulated B. thuringiensis israelensis spore-toxin complex was superior to that of a commercial B. thuringiensis israelensis formulation and comparable to that of the chemical insecticide temephos. Finally, it was suggested that the microencapsulated B. thuringiensis israelensis formulation should be evaluated for field use in Veracruz because its activity against Ae. aegypti larvae remained high through 31 d and this would allow halving of the current insecticide application frequency. PMID:20568600

  12. Impact of the nature and size of the polymeric backbone on the ability of heterobifunctional ligands to mediate shiga toxin and serum amyloid p component ternary complex formation.

    PubMed

    Kitov, Pavel I; Paszkiewicz, Eugenia; Sadowska, Joanna M; Deng, Zhicheng; Ahmed, Marya; Narain, Ravin; Griener, Thomas P; Mulvey, George L; Armstrong, Glen D; Bundle, David R

    2011-09-01

    Inhibition of AB(5)-type bacterial toxins can be achieved by heterobifunctional ligands (BAITs) that mediate assembly of supramolecular complexes involving the toxin's pentameric cell membrane-binding subunit and an endogenous protein, serum amyloid P component, of the innate immune system. Effective in vivo protection from Shiga toxin Type 1 (Stx1) is achieved by polymer-bound, heterobifunctional inhibitors-adaptors (PolyBAITs), which exhibit prolonged half-life in circulation and by mediating formation of face-to-face SAP-AB(5) complexes, block receptor recognition sites and redirect toxins to the spleen and liver for degradation. Direct correlation between solid-phase activity and protective dose of PolyBAITs both in the cytotoxicity assay and in vivo indicate that the mechanism of protection from intoxication is inhibition of toxin binding to the host cell membrane. The polymeric scaffold influences the activity not only by clustering active binding fragments but also by sterically interfering with the supramolecular complex assembly. Thus, inhibitors based on N-(2-hydroxypropyl) methacrylamide (HPMA) show significantly lower activity than polyacrylamide-based analogs. The detrimental steric effect can partially be alleviated by extending the length of the spacer, which separates pendant ligand from the backbone, as well as extending the spacer, which spans the distance between binding moieties within each heterobifunctional ligand. Herein we report that polymer size and payload of the active ligand had moderate effects on the inhibitor's activity. PMID:22069757

  13. MUTATIONS IN KATNB1 CAUSE COMPLEX CEREBRAL MALFORMATIONS BY DISRUPTING ASYMMETRICALLY DIVIDING NEURAL PROGENITORS

    PubMed Central

    Mishra-Gorur, Ketu; Çağlayan, Ahmet Okay; Schaffer, Ashleigh E.; Chabu, Chiswili; Henegariu, Octavian; Vonhoff, Fernando; Akgümüş, Gözde Tuğce; Nishimura, Sayoko; Han, Wenqi; Tu, Shu; Baran, Burcin; Gumus, Hakan; Dilber, Cengiz; Zaki, Maha S.; Hossni, Heba AA; Rivière, Jean-Baptiste; Kayserili, Hülya; Spencer, Emily G.; Rosti, Rasim O.; Schroth, Jana; Per, Hüseyin; Cağlar, Caner; Cağlar, Cagri; Dölen, Duygu; Baranoski, Jacob F.; Kumandaş, Sefer; Minja, Frank J.; Erson-Omay, E. Zeynep; Mane, Shrikant M.; Lifton, Richard P.; Xu, Tian; Keshishian, Haig; Dobyns, William B; Chi, Neil C.; Šestan, Nenad; Louvi, Angeliki; Bilgüvar, Kaya; Yasuno, Katsuhito; Gleeson, Joseph G.; Günel, Murat

    2016-01-01

    SUMMARY Exome sequencing analysis of over 2,000 children with complex malformations of cortical development identified 5 independent homozygous deleterious mutations in KATNB1, encoding the regulatory subunit of the microtubule severing enzyme katanin. Mitotic spindle formation is defective in patient-derived fibroblasts, a consequence of disrupted interactions of mutant KATNB1 with KATNA1, the catalytic subunit of katanin, and other microtubule associated proteins. Loss of KATNB1 orthologs in zebrafish (katnb1) and flies (kat80) results in microcephaly, recapitulating the human phenotype. In the developing Drosophila optic lobe, kat80 loss specifically affects the asymmetrically dividing neuroblasts, which display supernumerary centrosomes and spindle abnormalities during mitosis, leading to cell cycle progression delays and reduced cell numbers. Furthermore, kat80 depletion results in dendritic arborization defects in sensory and motor neurons, affecting neural architecture. Taken together, we provide insight into the mechanisms by which KATNB1 mutations cause human cerebral cortical malformations, demonstrating its fundamental role during brain development. PMID:25521378

  14. Safe, rapid, and sensitive method of quantitating and distinguishing among Shiga toxins in complex media and human serum

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Shiga toxins are primarily responsible for the virulence associated with Shiga toxin producing Escherichia coli (STEC) infections. The expression of the Shiga toxins is controlled by a phage that infects the host. More than one phage can infect a host and the host can inactivate infecting phages. T...

  15. Hemagglutinin gene shuffling among Clostridium botulinum serotypes C and D yields distinct sugar recognition of the botulinum toxin complex.

    PubMed

    Miyata, Keita; Suzuki, Tomonori; Hayashi, Shintaro; Miyashita, Shin-Ichiro; Ohyama, Tohru; Niwa, Koichi; Watanabe, Toshihiro; Sagane, Yoshimasa

    2015-10-01

    Clostridium botulinum strains produce a large-sized toxin complex (TC) that is composed of botulinum neurotoxin (BoNT), non-toxic non-hemagglutinin and three different hemagglutinins (HA-70, HA-33 and HA-17). HA components enhance toxin delivery across the intestinal cell wall in a sugar chain-dependent manner. Here we characterized the sugar recognition of serotype D strain 1873 (D-1873) botulinum L-TC. Most L-TCs produced by serotype C and D strains bind to cells via interactions between HA-33 and cell surface sialo-oligosaccharides. However, like the previously reported L-TC produced by serotype C strain Yoichi (C-Yoichi), D-1873 L-TC binds only to cells that have been treated with neuraminidase, indicating that they recognize asialo-oligosaccharides. The D-1873 HA-33 amino acid sequence is similar to that of C-Yoichi, but had lower similarity to the majority of serotype C and D HA-33s. A comparison of TC component primary structures for 12 serotype C and D strains suggested that at least three types of HA-33 genes exist, and these are shuffled among the serotype C and D strains independently of BoNT serotype. This shuffling produces the distinct sugar recognition of serotype C and D botulinum TCs. PMID:26223883

  16. Crystallization and preliminary X-ray analysis of two variants of the Escherichia coli O157 ParE2-PaaA2 toxin-antitoxin complex.

    PubMed

    Sterckx, Yann G J; Haesaerts, Sarah; Van Melderen, Laurence; Loris, Remy

    2014-09-01

    The paaR2-paaA2-parE2 operon is a three-component toxin-antitoxin module encoded in the genome of the human pathogen Escherichia coli O157. The toxin (ParE2) and antitoxin (PaaA2) interact to form a nontoxic toxin-antitoxin complex. In this paper, the crystallization and preliminary characterization of two variants of the ParE2-PaaA2 toxin-antitoxin complex are described. Selenomethionine-derivative crystals of the full-length ParE2-PaaA2 toxin-antitoxin complex diffracted to 2.8 Å resolution and belonged to space group P41212 (or P43212), with unit-cell parameters a = b = 90.5, c = 412.3 Å. It was previously reported that the full-length ParE2-PaaA2 toxin-antitoxin complex forms a higher-order oligomer. In contrast, ParE2 and PaaA213-63, a truncated form of PaaA2 in which the first 12 N-terminal residues of the antitoxin have been deleted, form a heterodimer as shown by analytical gel filtration, dynamic light scattering and small-angle X-ray scattering. Crystals of the PaaA213-63-ParE2 complex diffracted to 2.7 Å resolution and belonged to space group P6122 (or P6522), with unit-cell parameters a = b = 91.6, c = 185.6 Å. PMID:25195911

  17. Botulinum toxin complex increases paracellular permeability in intestinal epithelial cells via activation of p38 mitogen-activated protein kinase.

    PubMed

    Miyashita, Shin-Ichiro; Sagane, Yoshimasa; Inui, Ken; Hayashi, Shintaro; Miyata, Keita; Suzuki, Tomonori; Ohyama, Tohru; Watanabe, Toshihiro; Niwa, Koichi

    2013-12-30

    Clostridium botulinum produces a large toxin complex (L-TC) that increases paracellular permeability in intestinal epithelial cells by a mechanism that remains unclear. Here, we show that mitogen-activated protein kinases (MAPKs) are involved in this permeability increase. Paracellular permeability was measured by FITC-dextran flux through a monolayer of rat intestinal epithelial IEC-6 cells, and MAPK activation was estimated from western blots. L-TC of C. botulinum serotype D strain 4947 increased paracellular dextran flux and activated extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK), p38, but not c-Jun N-terminal kinase (JNK) in IEC-6 cells. The permeability increase induced by L-TC was abrogated by the p38 inhibitor SB203580. These results indicate that L-TC increases paracellular permeability by activating p38, but not JNK and ERK. PMID:23884081

  18. Comparison of Colony Hybridization to Phenotype Screening on Washed Sheep's Blood Agar for the Isolation of Shiga toxin Producing Escherichia coli from Complex Matrixes

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Purpose of study: Isolating Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli (STEC) from complex matrixes such as ground beef is a lengthy and laborious process. In our previous studies of STEC present in beef production, colony hybridization was used to identify suspect stx containing colonies for further c...

  19. Crystal structure of the plasmid maintenance system ɛ/ζ: Functional mechanism of toxin ζ and inactivation by ɛ2ζ2 complex formation

    PubMed Central

    Meinhart, Anton; Alonso, Juan C.; Sträter, Norbert; Saenger, Wolfram

    2003-01-01

    Programmed cell death in prokaryotes is frequently found as postsegregational killing. It relies on antitoxin/toxin systems that secure stable inheritance of low and medium copy number plasmids during cell division and kill cells that have lost the plasmid. The broad-host-range, low-copy-number plasmid pSM19035 from Streptococcus pyogenes carries the genes encoding the antitoxin/toxin system ɛ/ζ and antibiotic resistance proteins, among others. The crystal structure of the biologically nontoxic ɛ2ζ2 protein complex at a 1.95-Å resolution and site-directed mutagenesis showed that free ζ acts as phosphotransferase by using ATP/GTP. In ɛ2ζ2, the toxin ζ is inactivated because the N-terminal helix of the antitoxin ɛ blocks the ATP/GTP-binding site. To our knowledge, this is the first prokaryotic postsegregational killing system that has been entirely structurally characterized. PMID:12571357

  20. Characterization of Toxin Complex Gene Clusters and Insect Toxicity of Bacteria Representing Four Subgroups of Pseudomonas fluorescens.

    PubMed

    Rangel, Lorena I; Henkels, Marcella D; Shaffer, Brenda T; Walker, Francesca L; Davis, Edward W; Stockwell, Virginia O; Bruck, Denny; Taylor, Barbara J; Loper, Joyce E

    2016-01-01

    Ten strains representing four lineages of the Pseudomonas fluorescens group (P. chlororaphis, P. corrugata, P. koreensis, and P. fluorescens subgroups) were evaluated for toxicity to the tobacco hornworm Manduca sexta and the common fruit fly Drosophila melanogaster. The three strains within the P. chlororaphis subgroup exhibited both oral and injectable toxicity to the lepidopteran M. sexta. All three strains have the gene cluster encoding the FitD insect toxin and a ΔfitD mutant of P. protegens strain Pf-5 exhibited diminished oral toxicity compared to the wildtype strain. Only one of the three strains, P. protegens Pf-5, exhibited substantial levels of oral toxicity against the dipteran D. melanogaster. Three strains in the P. fluorescens subgroup, which lack fitD, consistently showed significant levels of injectable toxicity against M. sexta. In contrast, the oral toxicity of these strains against D. melanogaster was variable between experiments, with only one strain, Pseudomonas sp. BG33R, causing significant levels of mortality in repeated experiments. Toxin complex (Tc) gene clusters, which encode insecticidal properties in Photorhabdus luminescens, were identified in the genomes of seven of the ten strains evaluated in this study. Within those seven genomes, six types of Tc gene clusters were identified, distinguished by gene content, organization and genomic location, but no correlation was observed between the presence of Tc genes and insect toxicity of the evaluated strains. Our results demonstrate that members of the P. fluorescens group have the capacity to kill insects by both FitD-dependent and independent mechanisms. PMID:27580176

  1. Impact of the Nature and Size of the Polymeric Backbone on the Ability of Heterobifunctional Ligands to Mediate Shiga Toxin and Serum Amyloid P Component Ternary Complex Formation

    PubMed Central

    Kitov, Pavel I.; Paszkiewicz, Eugenia; Sadowska, Joanna M.; Deng, Zhicheng; Ahmed, Marya; Narain, Ravin; Griener, Thomas P.; Mulvey, George L.; Armstrong, Glen D.; Bundle, David R.

    2011-01-01

    Inhibition of AB5-type bacterial toxins can be achieved by heterobifunctional ligands (BAITs) that mediate assembly of supramolecular complexes involving the toxin’s pentameric cell membrane-binding subunit and an endogenous protein, serum amyloid P component, of the innate immune system. Effective in vivo protection from Shiga toxin Type 1 (Stx1) is achieved by polymer-bound, heterobifunctional inhibitors-adaptors (PolyBAITs), which exhibit prolonged half-life in circulation and by mediating formation of face-to-face SAP-AB5 complexes, block receptor recognition sites and redirect toxins to the spleen and liver for degradation. Direct correlation between solid-phase activity and protective dose of PolyBAITs both in the cytotoxicity assay and in vivo indicate that the mechanism of protection from intoxication is inhibition of toxin binding to the host cell membrane. The polymeric scaffold influences the activity not only by clustering active binding fragments but also by sterically interfering with the supramolecular complex assembly. Thus, inhibitors based on N-(2-hydroxypropyl) methacrylamide (HPMA) show significantly lower activity than polyacrylamide-based analogs. The detrimental steric effect can partially be alleviated by extending the length of the spacer, which separates pendant ligand from the backbone, as well as extending the spacer, which spans the distance between binding moieties within each heterobifunctional ligand. Herein we report that polymer size and payload of the active ligand had moderate effects on the inhibitor’s activity. PMID:22069757

  2. The Staphylococcus aureus lineage-specific markers collagen adhesin and toxic shock syndrome toxin 1 distinguish multilocus sequence typing clonal complexes within spa clonal complexes.

    PubMed

    Deurenberg, Ruud H; Rijnders, Michelle I A; Sebastian, Silvie; Welling, Maaike A; Beisser, Patrick S; Stobberingh, Ellen E

    2009-10-01

    Spa typing/based upon repeat pattern (BURP) sometimes cannot differentiate multilocus sequence typing (MLST) clonal complexes (CCs) within spa-CCs. It has been observed previously that virulence factors, such as collagen adhesin (CNA) and toxic shock syndrome toxin 1 (TSST-1), are associated with certain Staphylococcus aureus lineages. Analysis of methicillin-sensitive and methicillin-resistant S. aureus by spa typing/BURP and detection of CNA and TSST-1 observed an association between CNA and MLST CC1, 12, 22, 30, 45, 51, and 239 and between TSST-1 and MLST CC30. In spa-CC 012, associated with MLST CC7, CC15, and CC30, MLST CC30 could be distinguished from MLST CC7 and CC15 with CNA and TSST-1 as lineage-specific markers. Lineage-specific markers can overcome clustering of nonrelated MLST CCs into 1 spa-CC. PMID:19748421

  3. Conformational divergence in the HA-33/HA-17 trimer of serotype C and D botulinum toxin complex.

    PubMed

    Sagane, Yoshimasa; Hayashi, Shintaro; Akiyama, Tomonori; Matsumoto, Takashi; Hasegawa, Kimiko; Yamano, Akihito; Suzuki, Tomonori; Niwa, Koichi; Watanabe, Toshihiro; Yajima, Shunsuke

    2016-08-01

    Clostridium botulinum produces a large toxin complex (L-TC) comprising botulinum neurotoxin associated with auxiliary nontoxic proteins. A complex of 33- and 17-kDa hemagglutinins (an HA-33/HA-17 trimer) enhances L-TC transport across the intestinal epithelial cell layer via binding HA-33 to a sugar on the cell surface. At least two subtypes of serotype C/D HA-33 exhibit differing preferences for the sugars sialic acid and galactose. Here, we compared the three-dimensional structures of the galactose-binding HA-33 and HA-33/HA-17 trimers produced by the C-Yoichi strain. Comparisons of serotype C/D HA-33 sequences reveal a variable region with relatively low sequence similarity across the C. botulinum strains; the variability of this region may influence the manner of sugar-recognition by HA-33. Crystal structures of sialic acid- and galactose-binding HA-33 are broadly similar in appearance. However, small-angle X-ray scattering revealed distinct solution structures for HA-33/HA-17 trimers. A structural change in the C-terminal variable region of HA-33 might cause a dramatic shift in the conformation and sugar-recognition mode of HA-33/HA-17 trimer. PMID:27237978

  4. Toxins from Bacteria

    PubMed Central

    Henkel, James S.; Baldwin, Michael R.; Barbieri, Joseph T.

    2010-01-01

    Bacterial toxins damage the host at the site of bacterial infection or distanced from the site of infections. Bacterial toxins can be single proteins or organized as oligomeric protein complexes and are organized with distinct AB structure-function properties. The A domain encodes a catalytic activity; ADP-ribosylation of host proteins is the earliest post-translational modification determine to be performed by bacterial toxin, and now include glucosylation and proteolysis among other s. Bacterial toxins also catalyze the non-covalent modification of host protein function or can modify host cell properties through direct protein-protein interactions. The B domain includes two functional domains: a receptor-binding domain, which defines the tropism of a toxin for a cell and a translocation domain that delivers A domain across a lipid bilayer, either on the plasma membrane or the endosome. Bacterial toxins are often characterized based upon the section mechanism that delivers the toxin out of the bacterium, termed type I–VII. This review will overview the major families of bacterial toxins and will also describe the specific structure-function properties of the botulinum neurotoxins. PMID:20358680

  5. Structure of a bimodular botulinum neurotoxin complex provides insights into its oral toxicity

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Botulinum neurotoxins (BoNTs) are highly potent oral poisons produced by Clostridium botulinum. BoNTs are secreted along with several auxiliary proteins forming progenitor toxin complexes (PTC). Here, we report the structure of a ~760 kDa 14-subunit PTC using a combination of X-ray crystallography a...

  6. Progenitor Epithelium

    PubMed Central

    Marty-Santos, Leilani

    2015-01-01

    Insulin-producing β cells within the vertebrate fetal pancreas acquire their fate in a step-wise manner. Whereas the intrinsic factors dictating the transcriptional or epigenetic status of pancreatic lineages have been intensely examined, less is known about cell–cell interactions that might constitute a niche for the developing β cell lineage. It is becoming increasingly clear that understanding and recapitulating these steps may instruct in vitro differentiation of embryonic stem cells and/or therapeutic regeneration. Indeed, directed differentiation techniques have improved since transitioning from 2D to 3D cultures, suggesting that the 3D microenvironment in which β cells are born is critical. However, to date, it remains unknown whether the changing architecture of the pancreatic epithelium impacts the fate of cells therein. An emerging challenge in the field is to elucidate how progenitors are allocated during key events, such as the stratification and subsequent resolution of the pre-pancreatic epithelium, as well as the formation of lumens and branches. Here, we assess the progenitor epithelium and examine how it might influence the emergence of pancreatic multipotent progenitors (MPCs), which give rise to β cells and other pancreatic lineages. PMID:26216134

  7. HCMV Infection of Human Trophoblast Progenitor Cells of the Placenta Is Neutralized by a Human Monoclonal Antibody to Glycoprotein B and Not by Antibodies to the Pentamer Complex

    PubMed Central

    Zydek, Martin; Petitt, Matthew; Fang-Hoover, June; Adler, Barbara; Kauvar, Lawrence M.; Pereira, Lenore; Tabata, Takako

    2014-01-01

    Human cytomegalovirus (HCMV) is the major viral cause of congenital infection and birth defects. Primary maternal infection often results in virus transmission, and symptomatic babies can have permanent neurological deficiencies and deafness. Congenital infection can also lead to intrauterine growth restriction, a defect in placental transport. HCMV replicates in primary cytotrophoblasts (CTBs), the specialized cells of the placenta, and inhibits differentiation/invasion. Human trophoblast progenitor cells (TBPCs) give rise to the mature cell types of the chorionic villi, CTBs and multi-nucleated syncytiotrophoblasts (STBs). Here we report that TBPCs are fully permissive for pathogenic and attenuated HCMV strains. Studies with a mutant virus lacking a functional pentamer complex (gH/gL/pUL128-131A) showed that virion entry into TBPCs is independent of the pentamer. In addition, infection is blocked by a potent human neutralizing monoclonal antibody (mAb), TRL345, reactive with glycoprotein B (gB), but not mAbs to the pentamer proteins pUL130/pUL131A. Functional studies revealed that neutralization of infection preserved the capacity of TBPCs to differentiate and assemble into trophospheres composed of CTBs and STBs in vitro. Our results indicate that mAbs to gB protect trophoblast progenitors of the placenta and could be included in antibody treatments developed to suppress congenital infection and prevent disease. PMID:24651029

  8. A complex role of anthrax toxin receptor 2 polymorphisms and capillary morphogenesis protein 2 in ankylosing spondylitis pathogenesis.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Zhijian; Yu, Kun; Dai, Dongfa; Yuan, Fang; Liang, Fei; Liu, Nan; Xi, Yongzhi; Sun, Yu-Ying

    2016-09-01

    This study investigated the role of anthrax toxin receptor 2 (ANTXR2) gene polymorphisms and capillary morphogenesis protein 2 (CMG2) expression in susceptibility and pathogenesis to ankylosing spondylitis (AS) in the Han Chinese in Beijing. A case-control study was performed using 602 AS patient samples meeting the revised New York criterion and 619 matched controls from Han Chinese individuals. Nineteen single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) of ANTXR2 genes were selected and genotyped using the Sequenom iPlex platform. Real-time polymerase chain reaction and flow cytometry were performed to investigate the impact of SNP polymorphisms on ANTXR2 transcription and CMG2 expression, respectively. The association of variants with AS was examined with UNPHASED 3.1.5. A novel association was observed between AS and three SNPs in the ANTXR2 gene (rs4690127, rs6823031, and rs4333130; P = 0.004, 0.011, and 0.013, respectively), confirming the association between rs433130 and AS in the Han Chinese. The strongest haplotype association was observed with rs4690127-rs6823031-rs4333130 (P = 2.5 × 10(-4)). rs6534639 and rs4333130 showed a cis-interaction (P = 0.027) in AS. ANTXR2 messenger RNA (mRNA) expression was significantly higher in the AS group than in the control group (P = 0.039). CMG2 expression in the lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-stimulated group was significantly lower than that in the control group (P = 0.018). This study reports a novel association between ANTXR2 and AS in the Han Chinese. ANTXR2 genetic polymorphisms affect ANTXR2 mRNA transcription and CMG2 expression. The opposing results observed for ANTXR2 transcription and CMG2 expression suggest a complex role of ANTXR2 polymorphisms in AS pathogenesis. PMID:26728147

  9. Two Bacillus sphaericus binary toxins share the midgut receptor binding site: implications for resistance of Culex pipiens complex (Diptera: Culicidae) larvae.

    PubMed

    Silva-Filha, Maria Helena Neves Lobo; Oliveira, Cláudia Maria Fontes de; Regis, Lêda; Yuan, Zhiming; Rico, Clara Martinez; Nielsen-LeRoux, Christina

    2004-12-15

    This work demonstrates that Bin1 and Bin2 toxins, produced by Bacillus sphaericus strains IAB59 and 2362, respectively, share a binding site in midgut brush border membranes (BBMF) from Culex pipiens complex larvae. However, a colony selected with strain IAB59, displaying a resistance ratio of only 42-fold to IAB59, but a 162,000-fold resistance to strain 2362, was found to miss receptors for Bin2 in the BBMF. This correlates with results showing that Bin1, produced in strain IAB59, failed to bind specifically to BBMF from other colony highly resistant to strain 2362. Data indicate the loss of the BBMF bound receptor as a general mechanism of resistance to binary toxins in mosquito. PMID:15598531

  10. Optimal Neutralization of Centruroides noxius Venom Is Understood through a Structural Complex between Two Antibody Fragments and the Cn2 Toxin.

    PubMed

    Riaño-Umbarila, Lidia; Ledezma-Candanoza, Luis M; Serrano-Posada, Hugo; Fernández-Taboada, Guillermo; Olamendi-Portugal, Timoteo; Rojas-Trejo, Sonia; Gómez-Ramírez, Ilse V; Rudiño-Piñera, Enrique; Possani, Lourival D; Becerril, Baltazar

    2016-01-22

    The current trend of using recombinant antibody fragments in research to develop novel antidotes against scorpion stings has achieved excellent results. The polyclonal character of commercial antivenoms, obtained through the immunization of animals and which contain several neutralizing antibodies that recognize different epitopes on the toxins, guarantees the neutralization of the venoms. To avoid the use of animals, we aimed to develop an equivalent recombinant antivenom composed of a few neutralizing single chain antibody fragments (scFvs) that bind to two different epitopes on the scorpion toxins. In this study, we obtained scFv RU1 derived from scFv C1. RU1 showed a good capacity to neutralize the Cn2 toxin and whole venom of the scorpion Centruroides noxius. Previously, we had produced scFv LR, obtained from a different parental fragment (scFv 3F). LR also showed a similar neutralizing capacity. The simultaneous administration of both scFvs resulted in improved protection, which was translated as a rapid recovery of previously poisoned animals. The crystallographic structure of the ternary complex scFv LR-Cn2-scFv RU1 allowed us to identify the areas of interaction of both scFvs with the toxin, which correspond to non-overlapping sites. The epitope recognized by scFv RU1 seems to be related to a greater efficiency in the neutralization of the whole venom. In addition, the structural analysis of the complex helped us to explain the cross-reactivity of these scFvs and how they neutralize the venom. PMID:26589800

  11. Pertussis toxin

    SciTech Connect

    Sekura, R.D.; Moss, J.; Vaughan, M.

    1985-01-01

    This book contains 13 selections. Some of the titles are: Genetic and Functional Studies of Pertussis Toxin Substrates; Effect of Pertussis Toxin on the Hormonal Responsiveness of Different Tissues; Extracellular Adenylate Cyclase of Bordetella pertussis; and GTP-Regulatory Proteins are Introcellular Messagers: A Model for Hormone Action.

  12. Long-Term Effects of Botulinum Toxin Complex Type A Injection on Mechano- and Metabo-Sensitive Afferent Fibers Originating from Gastrocnemius Muscle

    PubMed Central

    Caron, Guillaume; Marqueste, Tanguy; Decherchi, Patrick

    2015-01-01

    The aim of the present study was to investigate long term effects of motor denervation by botulinum toxin complex type A (BoNT/A) from Clostridium Botulinum, on the afferent fibers originating from the gastrocnemius muscle of rats. Animals were divided in 2 experimental groups: 1) untreated animals acting as control and 2) treated animals in which the toxin was injected in the left muscle, the latter being itself divided into 3 subgroups according to their locomotor recovery with the help of a test based on footprint measurements of walking rats: i) no recovery (B0), ii) 50% recovery (B50) and iii) full recovery (B100). Then, muscle properties, metabosensitive afferent fiber responses to potassium chloride (KCl) and lactic acid injections and Electrically-Induced Fatigue (EIF), and mechanosensitive responses to tendon vibrations were measured. At the end of the experiment, rats were killed and the toxin injected muscles were weighted. After toxin injection, we observed a complete paralysis associated to a loss of force to muscle stimulation and a significant muscle atrophy, and a return to baseline when the animals recover. The response to fatigue was only decreased in the B0 group. The responses to KCl injections were only altered in the B100 groups while responses to lactic acid were altered in the 3 injected groups. Finally, our results indicated that neurotoxin altered the biphasic pattern of response of the mechanosensitive fiber to tendon vibrations in the B0 and B50 groups. These results indicated that neurotoxin injection induces muscle afferent activity alterations that persist and even worsen when the muscle has recovered his motor activity. PMID:26485650

  13. GSK3β, But Not GSK3α, Inhibits the Neuronal Differentiation of Neural Progenitor Cells As a Downstream Target of Mammalian Target of Rapamycin Complex1

    PubMed Central

    Ahn, Jyhyun; Jang, Jiwon; Choi, Jinyong; Lee, Junsub; Oh, Seo-Ho; Lee, Junghun; Yoon, Keejung

    2014-01-01

    Glycogen synthase kinase 3 (GSK3) acts as an important regulator during the proliferation and differentiation of neural progenitor cells (NPCs), but the roles of the isoforms of this molecule (GSK3α and GSK3β) have not been clearly defined. In this study, we investigated the functions of GSK3α and GSK3β in the context of neuronal differentiation of murine NPCs. Treatment of primary NPCs with a GSK3 inhibitor (SB216763) resulted in an increase in the percentage of TuJ1-positive immature neurons, suggesting an inhibitory role of GSK3 in embryonic neurogenesis. Downregulation of GSK3β expression increased the percentage of TuJ1-positive cells, while knock-down of GSK3α seemed to have no effect. When primary NPCs were engineered to stably express either isoform of GSK3 using retroviral vectors, GSK3β, but not GSK3α, inhibited neuronal differentiation and helped the cells to maintain the characteristics of NPCs. Mutant GSK3β (Y216F) failed to suppress neuronal differentiation, indicating that the kinase activity of GSK3β is important for this regulatory function. Similar results were obtained in vivo when a retroviral vector expressing GSK3β was delivered to E9.5 mouse brains using the ultrasound image-guided gene delivery technique. In addition, SB216763 was found to block the rapamycin-mediated inhibition of neuronal differentiation of NPCs. Taken together, our results demonstrate that GSK3β, but not GSK3α, negatively controls the neuronal differentiation of progenitor cells and that GSK3β may act downstream of the mammalian target of rapamycin complex1 signaling pathway. PMID:24397546

  14. Millipede toxin

    MedlinePlus

    ... release keeps away most predators. Some large millipede species can secrete these toxins as far as 80 ... reactions are mainly seen from contact with tropical species of millipedes. The outlook may be more serious ...

  15. Millipede toxin

    MedlinePlus

    ... toxin are: Hydrochloric acid Hydrogen cyanide Organic acids Phenol Cresols Benzoquinones Hydroquinones (in some millipedes) ... with plenty of soap and water. Do NOT use alcohol to wash the area. Wash eyes with ...

  16. Marine toxins.

    PubMed

    Whittle, K; Gallacher, S

    2000-01-01

    Seafood products are important both nutritionally and economically. Within Europe, some 12 billion Pounds of fishery products are consumed annually and an enormous variety of species are available. Although seafood is rarely implicated in food poisoning, compared to other food sources, it does provide some specific human health hazards unique to this particular resource. Generally, these are toxins from toxic microscopic algae which accumulate through the food-chain. The toxins can cause various neurological and gastrointestinal illnesses and, potentially, consumers are exposed from seafood produced within Europe, from imported products, or from seafood eaten while travelling abroad. The symptoms of illness which may be encountered, the source and mode of action of the toxins, and some emerging problems are described. European legislation aims to ensure the quality and safety of seafood products by prohibiting sale of some toxic species, setting toxin limits, requiring monitoring and controlling imports. PMID:10885118

  17. Crystal Structure of Botulinum Neurotoxin Type a in Complex With the Cell Surface Co-Receptor GT1b-Insight Into the Toxin-Neuron Interaction

    SciTech Connect

    Stenmark, P.; Dupuy, J.; Inamura, A.; Kiso, M.; Stevens, R.C.

    2009-05-26

    Botulinum neurotoxins have a very high affinity and specificity for their target cells requiring two different co-receptors located on the neuronal cell surface. Different toxin serotypes have different protein receptors; yet, most share a common ganglioside co-receptor, GT1b. We determined the crystal structure of the botulinum neurotoxin serotype A binding domain (residues 873-1297) alone and in complex with a GT1b analog at 1.7 A and 1.6 A, respectively. The ganglioside GT1b forms several key hydrogen bonds to conserved residues and binds in a shallow groove lined by Tryptophan 1266. GT1b binding does not induce any large structural changes in the toxin; therefore, it is unlikely that allosteric effects play a major role in the dual receptor recognition. Together with the previously published structures of botulinum neurotoxin serotype B in complex with its protein co-receptor, we can now generate a detailed model of botulinum neurotoxin's interaction with the neuronal cell surface. The two branches of the GT1b polysaccharide, together with the protein receptor site, impose strict geometric constraints on the mode of interaction with the membrane surface and strongly support a model where one end of the 100 A long translocation domain helix bundle swing into contact with the membrane, initiating the membrane anchoring event.

  18. BOTULINUM TOXIN

    PubMed Central

    Nigam, P K; Nigam, Anjana

    2010-01-01

    Botulinum toxin, one of the most poisonous biological substances known, is a neurotoxin produced by the bacterium Clostridium botulinum. C. botulinum elaborates eight antigenically distinguishable exotoxins (A, B, C1, C2, D, E, F and G). All serotypes interfere with neural transmission by blocking the release of acetylcholine, the principal neurotransmitter at the neuromuscular junction, causing muscle paralysis. The weakness induced by injection with botulinum toxin A usually lasts about three months. Botulinum toxins now play a very significant role in the management of a wide variety of medical conditions, especially strabismus and focal dystonias, hemifacial spasm, and various spastic movement disorders, headaches, hypersalivation, hyperhidrosis, and some chronic conditions that respond only partially to medical treatment. The list of possible new indications is rapidly expanding. The cosmetological applications include correction of lines, creases and wrinkling all over the face, chin, neck, and chest to dermatological applications such as hyperhidrosis. Injections with botulinum toxin are generally well tolerated and side effects are few. A precise knowledge and understanding of the functional anatomy of the mimetic muscles is absolutely necessary to correctly use botulinum toxins in clinical practice. PMID:20418969

  19. Crystallization of the C-terminal domain of the addiction antidote CcdA in complex with its toxin CcdB.

    PubMed

    Buts, Lieven; De Jonge, Natalie; Loris, Remy; Wyns, Lode; Dao-Thi, Minh-Hoa

    2005-10-01

    CcdA and CcdB are the antidote and toxin of the ccd addiction module of Escherichia coli plasmid F. The CcdA C-terminal domain (CcdAC36; 36 amino acids) was crystallized in complex with CcdB (dimer of 2 x 101 amino acids) in three different crystal forms, two of which diffract to high resolution. Form II belongs to space group P2(1)2(1)2(1), with unit-cell parameters a = 37.6, b = 60.5, c = 83.8 A and diffracts to 1.8 A resolution. Form III belongs to space group P2(1), with unit-cell parameters a = 41.0, b = 37.9, c = 69.6 A, beta = 96.9 degrees, and diffracts to 1.9 A resolution. PMID:16511204

  20. Crystallization and preliminary X-ray analysis of a novel haemagglutinin component of the toxin complex of serotype C Clostridium botulinum.

    PubMed

    Hayashi, Shintaro; Akiyama, Tomonori; Sagane, Yoshimasa; Miyashita, Shin-Ichiro; Watanabe, Toshihiro; Yajima, Shunsuke; Niwa, Koichi

    2014-03-01

    The botulinum toxin complex, the causative agent of botulism, passes through the intestinal wall via sugar-chain-dependent cell binding of a haemagglutinin of 33 kDa molecular weight (HA-33). The amino-acid sequence of the C-terminal half of HA-33 of the serotype C strain Yoichi (C-Yoichi) shares only 46% identity with those of the major serotype C strains. Additionally, C-Yoichi HA-33 exhibits a unique sugar-binding specificity. In the present work, C-Yoichi HA-33 was expressed in Escherichia coli and crystallized. Diffraction data were collected at a resolution of 2.2 Å. The crystals belonged to space group R3. The complete detailed protein structure will yield insight into how the unique HA-33 protein recognizes sugar moieties. PMID:24598930

  1. The crystal structure of the Rv0301-Rv0300 VapBC-3 toxin-antitoxin complex from M. tuberculosis reveals a Mg2+ ion in the active site and a putative RNA-binding site

    SciTech Connect

    Min, Andrew B; Miallau, Linda; Sawaya, Michael R; Habel, Jeff; Cascio, Duilio; Eisenberg, David

    2013-01-10

    VapBC pairs account for 45 out of 88 identified toxin-antitoxin (TA) pairs in the Mycobacterium tuberculosis (Mtb) H37Rv genome. A working model suggests that under times of stress, antitoxin molecules are degraded, releasing the toxins to slow the metabolism of the cell, which in the case of VapC toxins is via their RNase activity. Otherwise the TA pairs remain bound to their promoters, autoinhibiting transcription. The crystal structure of Rv0301-Rv0300, an Mtb VapBC TA complex determined at 1.49 Å resolution, suggests a mechanism for these three functions: RNase activity, its inhibition by antitoxin, and its ability to bind promoter DNA. The Rv0301 toxin consists of a core of five parallel beta strands flanked by alpha helices. Three proximal aspartates coordinate a Mg2+ ion forming the putative RNase active site. The Rv0300 antitoxin monomer is extended in structure, consisting of an N-terminal beta strand followed by four helices. The last two helices wrap around the toxin and terminate near the putative RNase active site, but with different conformations. In one conformation, the C-terminal arginine interferes with Mg2+ ion coordination, suggesting a mechanism by which the antitoxin can inhibit toxin activity. At the N-terminus of the antitoxin, two pairs of Ribbon-Helix-Helix (RHH) motifs are related by crystallographic twofold symmetry. The resulting hetero-octameric complex is similar to the FitAB system, but the two RHH motifs are about 30 Å closer together in the Rv0301-Rv0300 complex, suggesting either a different span of the DNA recognition sequence or a conformational change.

  2. Anthrax toxin-induced rupture of artificial lipid bilayer membranes.

    PubMed

    Nablo, Brian J; Panchal, Rekha G; Bavari, Sina; Nguyen, Tam L; Gussio, Rick; Ribot, Wil; Friedlander, Art; Chabot, Donald; Reiner, Joseph E; Robertson, Joseph W F; Balijepalli, Arvind; Halverson, Kelly M; Kasianowicz, John J

    2013-08-14

    We demonstrate experimentally that anthrax toxin complexes rupture artificial lipid bilayer membranes when isolated from the blood of infected animals. When the solution pH is temporally acidified to mimic that process in endosomes, recombinant anthrax toxin forms an irreversibly bound complex, which also destabilizes membranes. The results suggest an alternative mechanism for the translocation of anthrax toxin into the cytoplasm. PMID:23947891

  3. Anthrax toxin-induced rupture of artificial lipid bilayer membranes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nablo, Brian J.; Panchal, Rekha G.; Bavari, Sina; Nguyen, Tam L.; Gussio, Rick; Ribot, Wil; Friedlander, Art; Chabot, Donald; Reiner, Joseph E.; Robertson, Joseph W. F.; Balijepalli, Arvind; Halverson, Kelly M.; Kasianowicz, John J.

    2013-08-01

    We demonstrate experimentally that anthrax toxin complexes rupture artificial lipid bilayer membranes when isolated from the blood of infected animals. When the solution pH is temporally acidified to mimic that process in endosomes, recombinant anthrax toxin forms an irreversibly bound complex, which also destabilizes membranes. The results suggest an alternative mechanism for the translocation of anthrax toxin into the cytoplasm.

  4. Progenitor genealogy in the developing cerebral cortex.

    PubMed

    Laguesse, Sophie; Peyre, Elise; Nguyen, Laurent

    2015-01-01

    The mammalian cerebral cortex is characterized by a complex histological organization that reflects the spatio-temporal stratifications of related stem and neural progenitor cells, which are responsible for the generation of distinct glial and neuronal subtypes during development. Some work has been done to shed light on the existing filiations between these progenitors as well as their respective contribution to cortical neurogenesis. The aim of the present review is to summarize the current views of progenitor hierarchy and relationship in the developing cortex and to further discuss future research directions that would help us to understand the molecular and cellular regulating mechanisms involved in cerebral corticogenesis. PMID:25141969

  5. A 4-gigabase physical map unlocks the structure and evolution of the complex genome of Aegilops tauschii, the wheat D-genome progenitor

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The current limitations in genome sequencing technology require the construction of physical maps for high-quality draft sequences of large plant genomes, such as that of Aegilops tauschii, the wheat D-genome progenitor. To construct a physical map of the Ae. tauschii genome, we fingerprinted 461,70...

  6. Crystallization of the C-terminal domain of the addiction antidote CcdA in complex with its toxin CcdB

    SciTech Connect

    Buts, Lieven; De Jonge, Natalie; Loris, Remy Wyns, Lode; Dao-Thi, Minh-Hoa

    2005-10-01

    The CcdA C-terminal domain was crystallized in complex with CcdB in two crystal forms that diffract to beyond 2.0 Å resolution. CcdA and CcdB are the antidote and toxin of the ccd addiction module of Escherichia coli plasmid F. The CcdA C-terminal domain (CcdA{sub C36}; 36 amino acids) was crystallized in complex with CcdB (dimer of 2 × 101 amino acids) in three different crystal forms, two of which diffract to high resolution. Form II belongs to space group P2{sub 1}2{sub 1}2{sub 1}, with unit-cell parameters a = 37.6, b = 60.5, c = 83.8 Å and diffracts to 1.8 Å resolution. Form III belongs to space group P2{sub 1}, with unit-cell parameters a = 41.0, b = 37.9, c = 69.6 Å, β = 96.9°, and diffracts to 1.9 Å resolution.

  7. σ-1 Receptor Inhibition of ASIC1a Channels is Dependent on a Pertussis Toxin-Sensitive G-Protein and an AKAP150/Calcineurin Complex.

    PubMed

    Mari, Yelenis; Katnik, Christopher; Cuevas, Javier

    2015-10-01

    ASIC1a channels play a major role in various pathophysiological conditions including depression, anxiety, epilepsy, and neurodegeneration following ischemic stroke. Sigma-1 (σ-1) receptor stimulation depresses the activity of ASIC1a channels in cortical neurons, but the mechanism(s) by which σ-1 receptors exert their influence on ASIC1a remains unknown. Experiments were undertaken to elucidate the signaling cascade linking σ-1 receptors to ASIC1a channels. Immunohistochemical studies showed that σ-1 receptors, ASIC1a and A-kinase anchoring peptide 150 colocalize in the plasma membrane of the cell body and processes of cortical neurons. Fluorometric Ca(2+) imaging experiments showed that disruption of the macromolecular complexes containing AKAP150 diminished the effects of the σ-1 on ASIC1a, as did application of the calcineurin inhibitors, cyclosporin A and FK-506. Moreover, whole-cell patch clamp experiments showed that σ-1 receptors were less effective at decreasing ASIC1a-mediated currents in the presence of the VIVIT peptide, which binds to calcineurin and prevents cellular effects dependent on AKAP150/calcineurin interaction. The coupling of σ-1 to ASIC1a was also disrupted by preincubation of the neurons in the G-protein inhibitor, pertussis toxin (PTX). Taken together, our data reveal that σ-1 receptor block of ASIC1a function is dependent on activation of a PTX-sensitive G-protein and stimulation of AKAP150 bound calcineurin. PMID:24925261

  8. Clostridium perfringens Epsilon Toxin Causes Selective Death of Mature Oligodendrocytes and Central Nervous System Demyelination

    PubMed Central

    Linden, Jennifer R.; Ma, Yinghua; Zhao, Baohua; Harris, Jason Michael; Rumah, Kareem Rashid; Schaeren-Wiemers, Nicole

    2015-01-01

    ABSTRACT Clostridium perfringens epsilon toxin (ε-toxin) is responsible for a devastating multifocal central nervous system (CNS) white matter disease in ruminant animals. The mechanism by which ε-toxin causes white matter damage is poorly understood. In this study, we sought to determine the molecular and cellular mechanisms by which ε-toxin causes pathological changes to white matter. In primary CNS cultures, ε-toxin binds to and kills oligodendrocytes but not astrocytes, microglia, or neurons. In cerebellar organotypic culture, ε-toxin induces demyelination, which occurs in a time- and dose-dependent manner, while preserving neurons, astrocytes, and microglia. ε-Toxin specificity for oligodendrocytes was confirmed using enriched glial culture. Sensitivity to ε-toxin is developmentally regulated, as only mature oligodendrocytes are susceptible to ε-toxin; oligodendrocyte progenitor cells are not. ε-Toxin sensitivity is also dependent on oligodendrocyte expression of the proteolipid myelin and lymphocyte protein (MAL), as MAL-deficient oligodendrocytes are insensitive to ε-toxin. In addition, ε-toxin binding to white matter follows the spatial and temporal pattern of MAL expression. A neutralizing antibody against ε-toxin inhibits oligodendrocyte death and demyelination. This study provides several novel insights into the action of ε-toxin in the CNS. (i) ε-Toxin causes selective oligodendrocyte death while preserving all other neural elements. (ii) ε-Toxin-mediated oligodendrocyte death is a cell autonomous effect. (iii) The effects of ε-toxin on the oligodendrocyte lineage are restricted to mature oligodendrocytes. (iv) Expression of the developmentally regulated proteolipid MAL is required for the cytotoxic effects. (v) The cytotoxic effects of ε-toxin can be abrogated by an ε-toxin neutralizing antibody. PMID:26081637

  9. Three Dimensional Structure of the MqsR:MqsA Complex: a Novel TA Pair Comprised of a Toxin Homologous to RelE and an Antitoxin with Unique Properties

    SciTech Connect

    Brown, B.; Grigoriu, S; Kim, Y; Arruda, J; Davenport, A; wood, T; Peti, W; Page, R

    2009-01-01

    One mechanism by which bacteria survive environmental stress is through the formation of bacterial persisters, a sub-population of genetically identical quiescent cells that exhibit multidrug tolerance and are highly enriched in bacterial toxins. Recently, the Escherichia coli gene mqsR (b3022) was identified as the gene most highly upregulated in persisters. Here, we report multiple individual and complex three-dimensional structures of MqsR and its antitoxin MqsA (B3021), which reveal that MqsR:MqsA form a novel toxin:antitoxin (TA) pair. MqsR adopts an alpha/beta fold that is homologous with the RelE/YoeB family of bacterial ribonuclease toxins. MqsA is an elongated dimer that neutralizes MqsR toxicity. As expected for a TA pair, MqsA binds its own promoter. Unexpectedly, it also binds the promoters of genes important for E. coli physiology (e.g., mcbR, spy). Unlike canonical antitoxins, MqsA is also structured throughout its entire sequence, binds zinc and coordinates DNA via its C- and not N-terminal domain. These studies reveal that TA systems, especially the antitoxins, are significantly more diverse than previously recognized and provide new insights into the role of toxins in maintaining the persister state.

  10. Three dimensional structure of the MqsR:MqsA complex: a novel TA pair comprised of a toxin homologous to RelE and an antitoxin with unique properties.

    PubMed

    Brown, Breann L; Grigoriu, Simina; Kim, Younghoon; Arruda, Jennifer M; Davenport, Andrew; Wood, Thomas K; Peti, Wolfgang; Page, Rebecca

    2009-12-01

    One mechanism by which bacteria survive environmental stress is through the formation of bacterial persisters, a sub-population of genetically identical quiescent cells that exhibit multidrug tolerance and are highly enriched in bacterial toxins. Recently, the Escherichia coli gene mqsR (b3022) was identified as the gene most highly upregulated in persisters. Here, we report multiple individual and complex three-dimensional structures of MqsR and its antitoxin MqsA (B3021), which reveal that MqsR:MqsA form a novel toxin:antitoxin (TA) pair. MqsR adopts an alpha/beta fold that is homologous with the RelE/YoeB family of bacterial ribonuclease toxins. MqsA is an elongated dimer that neutralizes MqsR toxicity. As expected for a TA pair, MqsA binds its own promoter. Unexpectedly, it also binds the promoters of genes important for E. coli physiology (e.g., mcbR, spy). Unlike canonical antitoxins, MqsA is also structured throughout its entire sequence, binds zinc and coordinates DNA via its C- and not N-terminal domain. These studies reveal that TA systems, especially the antitoxins, are significantly more diverse than previously recognized and provide new insights into the role of toxins in maintaining the persister state. PMID:20041169

  11. An internal standard approach for homogeneous TR-FRET immunoassays facilitates the detection of bacteria, biomarkers, and toxins in complex matrices.

    PubMed

    Cohen, Noam; Zahavy, Eran; Zichel, Ran; Fisher, Morly

    2016-07-01

    The recent development of a homogeneous time-resolved Förster resonance energy transfer (TR-FRET) immunoassay enables one-step, rapid (minutes), and direct detection compared to the multistep, time-consuming (hours), heterogeneous ELISA-type immunoassays. The use of the time-resolved effect of a donor lanthanide complex with a delay time of microseconds and large Stokes shift enables the separation of positive signals from the background autofluorescence of the sample. However, this study shows that the sample matrices directly interfere with donor fluorescence and that interference cannot be eliminated by time-resolved settings alone. Moreover, the reduction in donor emission did not appear to be equivalent to the reduction in acceptor emission, resulting in incorrect FRET signal measurements. To overcome this limitation, an internal standard approach was developed using an isotype control antibody. This new approach was used to develop TR-FRET assays for rapid detection (15-30 min) of Bacillus anthracis spores and botulinum toxin (type E) in beverages, which are major concerns in bioterrorism involving deliberate food contamination. Additionally, we demonstrate the detection of B. anthracis-secreted protective antigen (PA) and the Yersinia pestis-secreted markers F1 and LcrV in blood cultures, which are early markers of bacteremia in infected hosts following a possible bioterror attack. The use of an internal standard enables the calculation of correct ΔF values without the need for an external standard. Thus, the use of the internal standard approach in homogeneous immunoassays facilitates the examination of any sample regardless of its origin, and therefore expands the applicability of TR-FRET assays for complex matrices. PMID:27236318

  12. Biocompatible hybrid nanomaterials involving polymers and hydrogels interfaced with phosphorescent complexes and toxin-free metallic nanoparticles for biomedical applications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Marpu, Sreekar B.

    The major topics discussed are all relevant to interfacing brightly phosphorescent and non-luminescent coinage metal complexes of [Ag(I) and Au(I)] with biopolymers and thermoresponsive gels for making hybrid nanomaterials with an explanation on syntheses, characterization and their significance in biomedical fields. Experimental results and ongoing work on determining outreaching consequences of these hybrid nanomaterials for various biomedical applications like cancer therapy, bio-imaging and antibacterial abilities are described. In vitro and in vivo studies have been performed on majority of the discussed hybrid nanomaterials and determined that the cytotoxicity or antibacterial activity are comparatively superior when compared to analogues in literature. Consequential differences are noticed in photoluminescence enhancement from hybrid phosphorescent hydrogels, phosphorescent complex ability to physically crosslink, Au(I) sulfides tendency to form NIR (near-infrared) absorbing AuNPs compared to any similar work in literature. Syntheses of these hybrid nanomaterials has been thoroughly investigated and it is determined that either metallic nanoparticles syntheses or syntheses of phosphorescent hydrogels can be carried in single step without involving any hazardous reducing agents or crosslinkers or stabilizers that are commonly employed during multiple step syntheses protocols for syntheses of similar materials in literature. These astounding results that have been discovered within studies of hybrid nanomaterials are an asset to applications ranging from materials development to health science and will have striking effect on environmental and green chemistry approaches.

  13. Architecture of the botulinum neurotoxin complex: a molecular machine for protection and delivery

    PubMed Central

    Lam, Kwok-Ho; Jin, Rongsheng

    2015-01-01

    Botulinum neurotoxins (BoNTs) are extremely poisonous protein toxins that cause the fatal paralytic disease botulism. They are naturally produced in bacteria with several nontoxic neurotoxin-associated proteins (NAPs) and together they form a progenitor toxin complex (PTC), the largest bacterial toxin complex known. In foodborne botulism, the PTC functions as a molecular machine that helps BoNT breach the host defense in the gut. Here, we discuss the substantial recent advance in elucidating the atomic structures and assembly of the 14-subunit PTC, including structures of BoNT and four NAPs. These structural studies shed light on the molecular mechanisms by which BoNT is protected against the acidic environment and proteolytic destruction in the gastrointestinal tract, and how it is delivered across the intestinal epithelial barrier. PMID:25889616

  14. The gallium(III)-salicylidene acylhydrazide complex shows synergistic anti-biofilm effect and inhibits toxin production by Pseudomonas aeruginosa.

    PubMed

    Rzhepishevska, Olena; Hakobyan, Shoghik; Ekstrand-Hammarström, Barbro; Nygren, Yvonne; Karlsson, Torbjörn; Bucht, Anders; Elofsson, Mikael; Boily, Jean-François; Ramstedt, Madeleine

    2014-09-01

    Bacterial biofilms cause a range of problems in many areas and especially in health care. Biofilms are difficult to eradicate with traditional antibiotics and consequently there is a need for alternative ways to prevent and/or remove bacterial biofilms. Furthermore, the emergence of antibiotic resistance in bacteria creates a challenge to find new types of antibiotics with a lower evolutionary pressure for resistance development. One route to develop such drugs is to target the so called virulence factors, i.e. bacterial systems used when bacteria infect a host cell. This study investigates synergy effects between Ga(III) ions, previously reported to suppress biofilm formation and growth in bacteria, and salicylidene acylhydrazides (hydrazones) that have been proposed as antivirulence drugs targeting the type three secretion system used by several Gram-negative pathogens, including Pseudomonas aerugionosa, during bacterial infection of host cells. A library of hydrazones was screened for: Fe(III) binding, enhanced anti-biofilm effect with Ga(III) on P. aeruginosa, and low cytotoxicity to mammalian cells. The metal coordination for the most promising ligand, 2-Oxo-2-[N-(2,4,6-trihydroxy-benzylidene)-hydrazino]-acetamide (ME0163) with Ga(III) was investigated using extended X-ray absorption fine structure spectroscopy as well as density functional theory. The results showed that Ga(III) chelates the hydrazone with 5- and 6-membered chelating rings, and that the Ga(III)-ME0163 complex enhanced the antibiofilm effect of Ga(III) while suppressing the type three secretion system in P. aeruginosa. The latter effect was not observed for the hydrazone alone and was similar for Ga(III)-citrate and Ga(III)-ME0163 complexes, indicating that the inhibition of virulence was caused by Ga(III). PMID:24837331

  15. Comparison of Systemic Toxicity between Botulinum Toxin Subtypes A1 and A2 in Mice and Rats.

    PubMed

    Torii, Yasushi; Goto, Yoshitaka; Nakahira, Shinji; Kozaki, Shunji; Kaji, Ryuji; Ginnaga, Akihiro

    2015-06-01

    The adverse events caused by botulinum toxin type A (subtype A1) product, thought to be after-effects of toxin diffusion after high-dose administration, have become serious issues. A preparation showing less diffusion in the body than existing drugs has been sought. We have attempted to produce neurotoxin derived from subtype A2 (A2NTX) with an amino acid sequence different from that of neurotoxin derived from subtype A1 (A1NTX). In this study, to investigate whether A2NTX has the potential to resolve these issues, we compared the safety of A2NTX, a progenitor toxin derived from subtype A1 (A1 progenitor toxin) and A1NTX employing the intramuscular lethal dose 50% (im LD50) in mice and rats and the compound muscle action potential (CMAP) in rats. Mouse im LD50 values for A1 progenitor toxin and A2NTX were 93 and 166 U/kg, respectively, and the rat im LD50 values were 117 and 153 U/kg, respectively. In the rat CMAP test, the dose on the contralateral side, which caused a 50% reduction in the CMAP amplitude, that is, CMAP-TD50 , was calculated as 19.0, 16.6 and 28.7 U/kg for A1 progenitor toxin, A1NTX and A2NTX, respectively. The results indicate that A2NTX is safer than A1 progenitor toxin and A1NTX. PMID:25395371

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

    PubMed Central

    Cote, Christopher K.; Welkos, Susan L.

    2015-01-01

    The interaction of anthrax toxin or toxin components with B. anthracis spores has been demonstrated. Germinating spores can produce significant amounts of toxin components very soon after the initiation of germination. In this review, we will summarize the work performed that has led to our understanding of toxin and spore interactions and discuss the complexities associated with these interactions. PMID:26287244

  17. The genetic architecture of a complex trait: Resistance to multiple toxins produced by Bacillus thuringiensis israelensis in the dengue and yellow fever vector, the mosquito Aedes aegypti.

    PubMed

    Bonin, Aurélie; Paris, Margot; Frérot, Hélène; Bianco, Erica; Tetreau, Guillaume; Després, Laurence

    2015-10-01

    The bacterial insecticide Bacillus thuringiensis subsp. israelensis (Bti) is an increasingly popular alternative to chemical insecticides for controlling mosquito populations. Because Bti toxicity relies on the action of four main toxins, resistance to Bti is very likely a complex phenotype involving several genes simultaneously. Dissecting the underlying genetic basis thus requires associating a quantitative measure of resistance to genetic variation at many loci in a segregating population. Here, we undertake this task using the dengue and yellow fever vector, the mosquito Aedes aegypti, as a study model. We conducted QTL (Quantitative Trait Locus) and admixture mapping analyses on two controlled crosses and on an artificial admixed population, respectively, all obtained from resistant and susceptible lab strains. We detected 16 QTL regions, among which four QTLs were revealed by different analysis methods. These four robust QTLs explained altogether 29.2% and 62.2% of the total phenotypic variance in the two QTL crosses, respectively. They also all showed a dominant mode of action. In addition, we found six loci showing statistical association with Bti resistance in the admixed population. Five of the supercontigs highlighted in this study contained candidate genes as suggested by their function, or by prior evidence from expression and/or outlier analyses. These genomic regions are thus good starting points for fine mapping of resistance to Bti or functional analyses aiming at identifying the underlying genes and mutations. Moreover, for the purpose of this work, we built the first Ae. aegypti genetic map based on markers associated with genes expressed in larvae. This genetic map harbors 229 SNP markers mapped across the three chromosomes for a total length of 311.9cM. It brought to light several assembly discrepancies with the reference genome, suggesting a high level of genome plasticity in Ae. aegypti. PMID:26238211

  18. Botulinum toxin injection - larynx

    MedlinePlus

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

  19. *CYANOBACTERIA AND THEIR TOXINS

    EPA Science Inventory

    Cyanobacteria, or blue-green algae, are naturally-occurring contaminants of surface waters worldwide. These photosynthesizing prokaryotes thrive in warm, shallow, nutrient-rich waters. Many produce potent toxins as secondary metabolites. Cyanobacteria toxins have been document...

  20. Stool C. difficile toxin

    MedlinePlus

    ... page: //medlineplus.gov/ency/article/003590.htm Stool C. difficile toxin To use the sharing features on this page, please enable JavaScript. The stool C. difficile toxin test detects harmful substances produced by ...

  1. Botox (Botulinum Toxin)

    MedlinePlus

    ... people when there are many effective and safe cosmetic procedures that can temporarily reduce a very prominent ... form of botulinum toxin is Type A (Botox® Cosmetic, Allergan, Inc). Botulinum toxin, what we will now ...

  2. Target-Driven Evolution of Scorpion Toxins.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Shangfei; Gao, Bin; Zhu, Shunyi

    2015-01-01

    It is long known that peptide neurotoxins derived from a diversity of venomous animals evolve by positive selection following gene duplication, yet a force that drives their adaptive evolution remains a mystery. By using maximum-likelihood models of codon substitution, we analyzed molecular adaptation in scorpion sodium channel toxins from a specific species and found ten positively selected sites, six of which are located at the core-domain of scorpion α-toxins, a region known to interact with two adjacent loops in the voltage-sensor domain (DIV) of sodium channels, as validated by our newly constructed computational model of toxin-channel complex. Despite the lack of positive selection signals in these two loops, they accumulated extensive sequence variations by relaxed purifying selection in prey and predators of scorpions. The evolutionary variability in the toxin-bound regions of sodium channels indicates that accelerated substitutions in the multigene family of scorpion toxins is a consequence of dealing with the target diversity. This work presents an example of atypical co-evolution between animal toxins and their molecular targets, in which toxins suffered from more prominent selective pressure from the channels of their competitors. Our discovery helps explain the evolutionary rationality of gene duplication of toxins in a specific venomous species. PMID:26444071

  3. Detection of Protein Toxins

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    We have focused on ricin, shiga-like toxin, botulinum neurotoxin (BoNT), and staphylococcal enterotoxin A (SEA), developing sensitive test methods for toxins and marker compounds in food matrices. Although animal models provide the best means for risk assessment, especially for crude toxins in compl...

  4. MRSA Clonal Complex 22 Strains Harboring Toxic Shock Syndrome Toxin (TSST-1) Are Endemic in the Primary Hospital in Gaza, Palestine

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Liang; Abdelateef, Nahed; Elamreen, Farid Abu; Ginocchio, Christine C.; Pierard, Denis; Becker, Karsten; Kreiswirth, Barry N.

    2015-01-01

    Background Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) is an important pathogen in both community and healthcare-related settings worldwide. Current knowledge regarding the epidemiology of S. aureus and MRSA in Gaza is based on a single community-based carriage study. Here we describe a cross-sectional analysis of 215 clinical isolates collected from Al-Shifa Hospital in Gaza during 2008 and 2012. Methods All isolates were characterized by spa typing, SCCmec typing, and detection of genes encoding Panton-Valentine leukocidin (PVL) and toxic shock syndrome toxin (TSST-1). Representative genotypes were also subjected to multilocus sequence typing (MLST). Antibiotic susceptibility testing was performed using VITEK2 and MicroScan. Results MRSA represented 56.3% of all S. aureus strains, and increased in frequency from 2008 (54.8%) to 2012 (58.4%). Aside from beta-lactams, resistance was observed to tetracycline, erythromycin, clindamycin, gentamicin, and fluoroquinolones. Molecular typing identified 35 spa types representing 17 MLST clonal complexes (CC), with spa 998 (Ridom t223, CC22) and spa 70 (Ridom t044, CC80) being the most prevalent. SCCmec types I, III, IV, V and VI were identified among MRSA isolates, while type II was not detected. PVL genes (lukF/S-PV) were detected in 40.0% of all isolates, while the TSST-1 gene (tst) was detected in 27.4% of all isolates, with surprisingly high frequency within CC22 (70.4%). Both PVL and TSST-1 genes were found in several isolates from 2012. Conclusions Molecular typing of clinical isolates from Gaza hospitals revealed unusually high prevalence of TSST-1 genes among CC22 MRSA, which is noteworthy given a recent community study describing widespread carriage of a CC22 MRSA clone known as the ‘Gaza strain’. While the latter did not address TSST-1, tst-positive spa 998 (Ridom t223) has been detected in several neighboring countries, and described as endemic in an Italian NICU, suggesting international spread of a

  5. Structural model of ligand-G protein-coupled receptor (GPCR) complex based on experimental double mutant cycle data: MT7 snake toxin bound to dimeric hM1 muscarinic receptor.

    PubMed

    Marquer, Catherine; Fruchart-Gaillard, Carole; Letellier, Guillaume; Marcon, Elodie; Mourier, Gilles; Zinn-Justin, Sophie; Ménez, André; Servent, Denis; Gilquin, Bernard

    2011-09-01

    The snake toxin MT7 is a potent and specific allosteric modulator of the human M1 muscarinic receptor (hM1). We previously characterized by mutagenesis experiments the functional determinants of the MT7-hM1 receptor interaction (Fruchart-Gaillard, C., Mourier, G., Marquer, C., Stura, E., Birdsall, N. J., and Servent, D. (2008) Mol. Pharmacol. 74, 1554-1563) and more recently collected evidence indicating that MT7 may bind to a dimeric form of hM1 (Marquer, C., Fruchart-Gaillard, C., Mourier, G., Grandjean, O., Girard, E., le Maire, M., Brown, S., and Servent, D. (2010) Biol. Cell 102, 409-420). To structurally characterize the MT7-hM1 complex, we adopted a strategy combining double mutant cycle experiments and molecular modeling calculations. First, thirty-three ligand-receptor proximities were identified from the analysis of sixty-one double mutant binding affinities. Several toxin residues that are more than 25 Å apart still contact the same residues on the receptor. As a consequence, attempts to satisfy all the restraints by docking the toxin onto a single receptor failed. The toxin was then positioned onto two receptors during five independent flexible docking simulations. The different possible ligand and receptor extracellular loop conformations were described by performing simulations in explicit solvent. All the docking calculations converged to the same conformation of the MT7-hM1 dimer complex, satisfying the experimental restraints and in which (i) the toxin interacts with the extracellular side of the receptor, (ii) the tips of MT7 loops II and III contact one hM1 protomer, whereas the tip of loop I binds to the other protomer, and (iii) the hM1 dimeric interface involves the transmembrane helices TM6 and TM7. These results structurally support the high affinity and selectivity of the MT7-hM1 interaction and highlight the atypical mode of interaction of this allosteric ligand on its G protein-coupled receptor target. PMID:21685390

  6. A 4-gigabase physical map unlocks the structure and evolution of the complex genome of Aegilops tauschii, the wheat D-genome progenitor

    PubMed Central

    Luo, Ming-Cheng; Gu, Yong Q.; You, Frank M.; Deal, Karin R.; Ma, Yaqin; Hu, Yuqin; Huo, Naxin; Wang, Yi; Wang, Jirui; Chen, Shiyong; Jorgensen, Chad M.; Zhang, Yong; McGuire, Patrick E.; Pasternak, Shiran; Stein, Joshua C.; Ware, Doreen; Kramer, Melissa; McCombie, W. Richard; Kianian, Shahryar F.; Martis, Mihaela M.; Mayer, Klaus F. X.; Sehgal, Sunish K.; Li, Wanlong; Gill, Bikram S.; Bevan, Michael W.; Šimková, Hana; Doležel, Jaroslav; Weining, Song; Lazo, Gerard R.; Anderson, Olin D.; Dvorak, Jan

    2013-01-01

    The current limitations in genome sequencing technology require the construction of physical maps for high-quality draft sequences of large plant genomes, such as that of Aegilops tauschii, the wheat D-genome progenitor. To construct a physical map of the Ae. tauschii genome, we fingerprinted 461,706 bacterial artificial chromosome clones, assembled contigs, designed a 10K Ae. tauschii Infinium SNP array, constructed a 7,185-marker genetic map, and anchored on the map contigs totaling 4.03 Gb. Using whole genome shotgun reads, we extended the SNP marker sequences and found 17,093 genes and gene fragments. We showed that collinearity of the Ae. tauschii genes with Brachypodium distachyon, rice, and sorghum decreased with phylogenetic distance and that structural genome evolution rates have been high across all investigated lineages in subfamily Pooideae, including that of Brachypodieae. We obtained additional information about the evolution of the seven Triticeae chromosomes from 12 ancestral chromosomes and uncovered a pattern of centromere inactivation accompanying nested chromosome insertions in grasses. We showed that the density of noncollinear genes along the Ae. tauschii chromosomes positively correlates with recombination rates, suggested a cause, and showed that new genes, exemplified by disease resistance genes, are preferentially located in high-recombination chromosome regions. PMID:23610408

  7. Risk assessment of shellfish toxins.

    PubMed

    Munday, Rex; Reeve, John

    2013-11-01

    Complex secondary metabolites, some of which are highly toxic to mammals, are produced by many marine organisms. Some of these organisms are important food sources for marine animals and, when ingested, the toxins that they produce may be absorbed and stored in the tissues of the predators, which then become toxic to animals higher up the food chain. This is a particular problem with shellfish, and many cases of poisoning are reported in shellfish consumers each year. At present, there is no practicable means of preventing uptake of the toxins by shellfish or of removing them after harvesting. Assessment of the risk posed by such toxins is therefore required in order to determine levels that are unlikely to cause adverse effects in humans and to permit the establishment of regulatory limits in shellfish for human consumption. In the present review, the basic principles of risk assessment are described, and the progress made toward robust risk assessment of seafood toxins is discussed. While good progress has been made, it is clear that further toxicological studies are required before this goal is fully achieved. PMID:24226039

  8. Risk Assessment of Shellfish Toxins

    PubMed Central

    Munday, Rex; Reeve, John

    2013-01-01

    Complex secondary metabolites, some of which are highly toxic to mammals, are produced by many marine organisms. Some of these organisms are important food sources for marine animals and, when ingested, the toxins that they produce may be absorbed and stored in the tissues of the predators, which then become toxic to animals higher up the food chain. This is a particular problem with shellfish, and many cases of poisoning are reported in shellfish consumers each year. At present, there is no practicable means of preventing uptake of the toxins by shellfish or of removing them after harvesting. Assessment of the risk posed by such toxins is therefore required in order to determine levels that are unlikely to cause adverse effects in humans and to permit the establishment of regulatory limits in shellfish for human consumption. In the present review, the basic principles of risk assessment are described, and the progress made toward robust risk assessment of seafood toxins is discussed. While good progress has been made, it is clear that further toxicological studies are required before this goal is fully achieved. PMID:24226039

  9. Toxin activity assays, devices, methods and systems therefor

    DOEpatents

    Koh, Chung-Yan; Schaff, Ulrich Y.; Sommer, Gregory Jon

    2016-04-05

    Embodiments of the present invention are directed toward devices, system and method for conducting toxin activity assay using sedimentation. The toxin activity assay may include generating complexes which bind to a plurality of beads in a fluid sample. The complexes may include a target toxin and a labeling agent, or may be generated due to presence of active target toxin and/or labeling agent designed to be incorporated into complexes responsive to the presence of target active toxin. The plurality of beads including the complexes may be transported through a density media, wherein the density media has a lower density than a density of the beads and higher than a density of the fluid sample, and wherein the transporting occurs, at least in part, by sedimentation. Signal may be detected from the labeling agents of the complexes.

  10. Mapping Protein-Protein Interactions of the Resistance-Related Bacterial Zeta Toxin-Epsilon Antitoxin Complex (ε₂ζ₂) with High Affinity Peptide Ligands Using Fluorescence Polarization.

    PubMed

    Fernández-Bachiller, María Isabel; Brzozowska, Iwona; Odolczyk, Norbert; Zielenkiewicz, Urszula; Zielenkiewicz, Piotr; Rademann, Jörg

    2016-01-01

    Toxin-antitoxin systems constitute a native survival strategy of pathogenic bacteria and thus are potential targets of antibiotic drugs. Here, we target the Zeta-Epsilon toxin-antitoxin system, which is responsible for the stable maintenance of certain multiresistance plasmids in Gram-positive bacteria. Peptide ligands were designed on the basis of the ε₂ζ₂ complex. Three α helices of Zeta forming the protein-protein interaction (PPI) site were selected and peptides were designed conserving the residues interacting with Epsilon antitoxin while substituting residues binding intramolecularly to other parts of Zeta. Designed peptides were synthesized with an N-terminal fluoresceinyl-carboxy-residue for binding assays and provided active ligands, which were used to define the hot spots of the ε₂ζ₂ complex. Further shortening and modification of the binding peptides provided ligands with affinities <100 nM, allowing us to determine the most relevant PPIs and implement a robust competition binding assay. PMID:27438853

  11. [Intoxication of botulinum toxin].

    PubMed

    Chudzicka, Aleksandra

    2015-09-01

    Botulinum toxin is an egzotoxin produced by Gram positive bacteria Clostridium botulinum. It is among the most potent toxins known. The 3 main clinical presentations of botulism are as follows: foodborne botulism, infant botulism and wound botulism. The main symptom of intoxication is flat muscles paralysis. The treatment is supportive care and administration of antitoxin. In prevention the correct preparing of canned food is most important. Botulinum toxin is accepted as a biological weapon. PMID:26449577

  12. Botulinum toxin injection - larynx

    MedlinePlus

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

  13. A unique hetero-hexadecameric architecture displayed by the Escherichia coli O157 PaaA2-ParE2 antitoxin-toxin complex.

    PubMed

    Sterckx, Yann G-J; Jové, Thomas; Shkumatov, Alexander V; Garcia-Pino, Abel; Geerts, Lieselotte; De Kerpel, Maia; Lah, Jurij; De Greve, Henri; Van Melderen, Laurence; Loris, Remy

    2016-04-24

    Many bacterial pathogens modulate their metabolic activity, virulence and pathogenicity through so-called "toxin-antitoxin" (TA) modules. The genome of the human pathogen Escherichia coli O157 contains two three-component TA modules related to the known parDE module. Here, we show that the toxin EcParE2 maps in a branch of the RelE/ParE toxin superfamily that is distinct from the branches that contain verified gyrase and ribosome inhibitors. The structure of EcParE2 closely resembles that of Caulobacter crescentus ParE but shows a distinct pattern of conserved surface residues, in agreement with its apparent inability to interact with GyrA. The antitoxin EcPaaA2 is characterized by two α-helices (H1 and H2) that serve as molecular recognition elements to wrap itself around EcParE2. Both EcPaaA2 H1 and H2 are required to sustain a high-affinity interaction with EcParE2 and for the inhibition of EcParE2-mediated killing in vivo. Furthermore, evidence demonstrates that EcPaaA2 H2, but not H1, determines specificity for EcParE2. The initially formed EcPaaA2-EcParE2 heterodimer then assembles into a hetero-hexadecamer, which is stable in solution and is formed in a highly cooperative manner. Together these findings provide novel data on quaternary structure, TA interactions and activity of a hitherto poorly characterized family of TA modules. PMID:26996937

  14. A 4-gigbase physical map unlocks the structure and evolution of the complex genome of Aegilop tauschii, the wheat D-genome progenitor

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The genomes of wheat and its relatives in the tribe Triticeae are large, containing nearly 90% repetitive DNA, and some are polyploid. These genomes can currently be completely sequenced only by the ordered-clone genome sequencing approach, which reduces the complexity of sequence assembly from th...

  15. Oligomerization of Clostridium perfringens Epsilon Toxin Is Dependent upon Caveolins 1 and 2

    PubMed Central

    Fennessey, Christine M.; Sheng, Jinsong; Rubin, Donald H.; McClain, Mark S.

    2012-01-01

    Evidence from multiple studies suggests that Clostridium perfringens ε-toxin is a pore-forming toxin, assembling into oligomeric complexes in the plasma membrane of sensitive cells. In a previous study, we used gene-trap mutagenesis to identify mammalian factors contributing to toxin activity, including caveolin-2 (CAV2). In this study, we demonstrate the importance of caveolin-2 and its interaction partner, caveolin-1 (CAV1), in ε-toxin-induced cytotoxicity. Using CAV2-specific shRNA in a toxin-sensitive human kidney cell line, ACHN, we confirmed that cells deficient in CAV2 exhibit increased resistance to ε-toxin. Similarly, using CAV1-specific shRNA, we demonstrate that cells deficient in CAV1 also exhibit increased resistance to the toxin. Immunoprecipitation of CAV1 and CAV2 from ε-toxin-treated ACHN cells demonstrated interaction of both CAV1 and -2 with the toxin. Furthermore, blue-native PAGE indicated that the toxin and caveolins were components of a 670 kDa protein complex. Although ε-toxin binding was only slightly perturbed in caveolin-deficient cells, oligomerization of the toxin was dramatically reduced in both CAV1- and CAV2-deficient cells. These results indicate that CAV1 and -2 potentiate ε-toxin induced cytotoxicity by promoting toxin oligomerization – an event which is requisite for pore formation and, by extension, cell death. PMID:23056496

  16. Preformed bacterial toxins.

    PubMed

    Crane, J K

    1999-09-01

    Food poisoning syndromes caused by four different bacteria are described. For all types, food kept at a permissive temperature allows growth of the vegetative forms of the bacteria and production of a toxin or toxins. The key features of these syndromes, as well as possible new trends of concern, are summarized in Table 1. PMID:10549427

  17. Defense against toxin weapons

    SciTech Connect

    Franz, D.R.

    1994-01-01

    The purpose of this manual is to provide basic information on biological toxins to military leaders and health-care providers at all levels to help them make informed decisions on protecting their troops from toxins. Much of the information contained herein will also be of interest to individuals charged with countering domestic and international terrorism. We typically fear what we do not understand.

  18. Staphylococcus aureus toxins--their functions and genetics.

    PubMed

    Grumann, Dorothee; Nübel, Ulrich; Bröker, Barbara M

    2014-01-01

    The outcome of encounters between Staphylococcus (S.) aureus and its human host ranges from life-threatening infection through allergic reactions to symptom-free colonization. The pan-genome of this bacterial species encodes numerous toxins, known or strongly suspected to cause specific diseases or symptoms. Three toxin families are in the focus of this review, namely (i) pore-forming toxins, (ii) exfoliative toxins and (iii) superantigens. The majority of toxin-encoding genes are located on mobile genetic elements (MGEs), resulting in a pronounced heterogeneity in the endowment with toxin genes of individual S. aureus strains. Recent population genomic analysis have provided a framework for an improved understanding of the temporal and spatial scales of the motility of MGEs and their associated toxin genes. The distribution of toxin genes among clonal lineages within the species S. aureus is not random, and phylogenetic (sub-)lineages within clonal complexes feature characteristic toxin signatures. When studying pathogenesis, this lineage association, which is caused by the clonal nature of S. aureus makes it difficult to discriminate effects of specific toxins from contributions of the genetic background and/or other associated genetic factors. PMID:23541411

  19. Modulation of innate and acquired immune responses by Escherichia coli heat-labile toxin: distinct pro- and anti-inflammatory effects of the nontoxic AB complex and the enzyme activity.

    PubMed

    Ryan, E J; McNeela, E; Pizza, M; Rappuoli, R; O'Neill, L; Mills, K H

    2000-11-15

    We have examined the roles of enzyme activity and the nontoxic AB complex of heat-labile toxin (LT) from Escherichia coli on its adjuvant and immunomodulatory properties. LTK63, an LT mutant that is completely devoid of enzyme activity, enhanced Th1 responses to coinjected Ags at low adjuvant dose. In contrast, LTR72, a partially detoxified mutant, enhanced Th2 responses and when administered intranasally to mice before infection with Bordetella pertussis suppressed Th1 responses and delayed bacterial clearance from the lungs. LTR72 or wild-type LT inhibited Ag-induced IFN-gamma production by Th1 cells, and LT enhanced IL-5 production by Th2 cells in vitro. Each of the toxins enhanced B7-1 expression on macrophages, but enhancement of B7-2 expression was dependent on enzyme activity. We also observed distinct effects of the nontoxic AB complex and enzyme activity on inflammatory cytokine production. LT and LTR72 suppressed LPS and IFN-gamma induced TNF-alpha and IL-12 production, but enhanced IL-10 secretion by macrophages in vitro and suppressed IL-12 production in vivo in a murine model of LPS-induced shock. In contrast, LTK63 augmented the production of IL-12 and TNF-alpha. Furthermore, LTK63 enhanced NF-kappaB translocation, whereas low doses of LTR72 or LT failed to activate NF-kappaB, but stimulated cAMP production. Thus, E. coli LT appears to be capable of suppressing Th1 responses and enhancing Th2 responses through the modulatory effects of enzyme activity on NF-kappaB activation and IL-12 production. In contrast, the nontoxic AB complex can stimulate acquired immune responses by activating components of the innate immune system. PMID:11067933

  20. The Enhancer of Split Complex and Adjacent Genes in the 96f Region of Drosophila Melanogaster Are Required for Segregation of Neural and Epidermal Progenitor Cells

    PubMed Central

    Schrons, H.; Knust, E.; Campos-Ortega, J. A.

    1992-01-01

    The Enhancer of split complex [E(spl)-C] of Drosophila melanogaster is located in the 96F region of the third chromosome and comprises at least seven structurally related genes, HLH-mδ, HLH-mγ, HLH-mβ, HLH-m3, HLH-m5, HLH-m7 and E(spl). The functions of these genes are required during early neurogenesis to give neuroectodermal cells access to the epidermal pathway of development. Another gene in the 96F region, namely groucho, is also required for this process. However, groucho is not structurally related to, and appears to act independently of, the genes of the E(spl)-C; the possibility is discussed that groucho acts upstream to the E(spl)-C genes. Indirect evidence suggests that a neighboring transcription unit (m4) may also take part in the process. Of all these genes, only gro is essential; m4 is a dispensable gene, the deletion of which does not produce detectable morphogenetic abnormalities, and the genes of the E(spl)-C are to some extent redundant and can partially substitute for each other. This redundancy is probably due to the fact that the seven genes of the E(spl)-C encode highly conserved putative DNA-binding proteins of the bHLH family. The genes of the complex are interspersed among other genes which appear to be unrelated to the neuroepidermal lineage dichotomy. PMID:1427039

  1. Stem and progenitor cell dysfunction in human trisomies

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Binbin; Filippi, Sarah; Roy, Anindita; Roberts, Irene

    2015-01-01

    Trisomy 21, the commonest constitutional aneuploidy in humans, causes profound perturbation of stem and progenitor cell growth, which is both cell context dependent and developmental stage specific and mediated by complex genetic mechanisms beyond increased Hsa21 gene dosage. While proliferation of fetal hematopoietic and testicular stem/progenitors is increased and may underlie increased susceptibility to childhood leukemia and testicular cancer, fetal stem/progenitor proliferation in other tissues is markedly impaired leading to the characteristic craniofacial, neurocognitive and cardiac features in individuals with Down syndrome. After birth, trisomy 21-mediated premature aging of stem/progenitor cells may contribute to the progressive multi-system deterioration, including development of Alzheimer's disease. PMID:25520324

  2. Understanding malarial toxins.

    PubMed

    Starkl Renar, Katarina; Iskra, Jernej; Križaj, Igor

    2016-09-01

    Recognized since antiquity, malaria is one of the most infamous and widespread infectious diseases in humans and, although the death rate during the last century has been diminishing, it still accounts for more than a half million deaths annually. It is caused by the Plasmodium parasite and typical symptoms include fever, shivering, headache, diaphoresis and nausea, all resulting from an excessive inflammatory response induced by malarial toxins released into the victim's bloodstream. These toxins are hemozoin and glycosylphosphatidylinositols. The former is the final product of the parasite's detoxification of haeme, a by-product of haemoglobin catabolism, while the latter anchor proteins to the Plasmodium cell surface or occur as free molecules. Currently, only two groups of antimalarial toxin drugs exist on the market, quinolines and artemisinins. As we describe, they both target biosynthesis of hemozoin. Other substances, currently in various phases of clinical trials, are directed towards biosynthesis of glycosylphosphatidylinositol, formation of hemozoin, or attenuation of the inflammatory response of the patient. Among the innovative approaches to alleviating the effects of malarial toxins, is the development of antimalarial toxin vaccines. In this review the most important lessons learned from the use of treatments directed against the action of malarial toxins in antimalarial therapy are emphasized and the most relevant and promising directions for future research in obtaining novel antimalarial agents acting on malarial toxins are discussed. PMID:27353131

  3. Bacterial toxins: friends or foes?

    PubMed Central

    Schmitt, C. K.; Meysick, K. C.; O'Brien, A. D.

    1999-01-01

    Many emerging and reemerging bacterial pathogens synthesize toxins that serve as primary virulence factors. We highlight seven bacterial toxins produced by well-established or newly emergent pathogenic microbes. These toxins, which affect eukaryotic cells by a variety of means, include Staphylococcus aureus alpha-toxin, Shiga toxin, cytotoxic necrotizing factor type 1, Escherichia coli heat-stable toxin, botulinum and tetanus neurotoxins, and S. aureus toxic-shock syndrome toxin. For each, we discuss the information available on its synthesis and structure, mode of action, and contribution to virulence. We also review the role certain toxins have played in unraveling signal pathways in eukaryotic cells and summarize the beneficial uses of toxins and toxoids. Our intent is to illustrate the importance of the analysis of bacterial toxins to both basic and applied sciences. PMID:10221874

  4. Neutralizing Monoclonal Antibodies against Disparate Epitopes on Ricin Toxin's Enzymatic Subunit Interfere with Intracellular Toxin Transport.

    PubMed

    Yermakova, Anastasiya; Klokk, Tove Irene; O'Hara, Joanne M; Cole, Richard; Sandvig, Kirsten; Mantis, Nicholas J

    2016-01-01

    Ricin is a member of the A-B family of bacterial and plant toxins that exploit retrograde trafficking to the Golgi apparatus and endoplasmic reticulum (ER) as a means to deliver their cytotoxic enzymatic subunits into the cytoplasm of mammalian cells. In this study we demonstrate that R70 and SyH7, two well-characterized monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) directed against distinct epitopes on the surface of ricin's enzymatic subunit (RTA), interfere with toxin transport from the plasma membrane to the trans Golgi network. Toxin-mAb complexes formed on the cell surface delayed ricin's egress from EEA-1(+) and Rab7(+) vesicles and enhanced toxin accumulation in LAMP-1(+) vesicles, suggesting the complexes were destined for degradation in lysosomes. Three other RTA-specific neutralizing mAbs against different epitopes were similar to R70 and SyH7 in terms of their effects on ricin retrograde transport. We conclude that interference with toxin retrograde transport may be a hallmark of toxin-neutralizing antibodies directed against disparate epitopes on RTA. PMID:26949061

  5. Effects of palladacycle complex on hematopoietic progenitor cells proliferation in vivo and in vitro and its relation with the inhibitory properties of this compound on the angiotensin-I converting enzyme activity.

    PubMed

    Caires, Antonio C F; Oliveira, Carlos R; Smith, Mickaela C M; Hemerly, Jefferson P; Juliano, Maria A; Bincoletto, Claudia

    2004-01-01

    In the present study, we introduce a new class of organometallic compound, the Biphosphinic Palladacycle Complex [Pd (C2, N-S(-)(dmpa)(dppf)] Cl (BPC), as an angiotensin-I converting-enzyme inhibitor (ACEI) with hematological regulation properties. When BPC was assayed as a competitive inhibitor over the hydrolysis of Abz-YRK (Dnp)-P-OH (Km = 7.0 microM), it showed a Kiapp = 0.2259 ng and a Ki value of 94.12 pg. Using murine long-term bone marrow cultures (LTBMCs) and clonal culture techniques, we also evaluated the capacity of this drug (1.18 microM) to module haematopoietic progenitor cells proliferation in vitro and in vivo. Our results demonstrated that BPC produces no toxicity to bone marrow cells, as determined by the unchanged cell number in the non-adherent layer at weeks 1, 2, and 8 and the increased number of adherent cells present in the BPC-treated LTBMCs. However, the proportion of CFU-Cs in the non-adherent cell layer was reduced at weeks 5, 6, 8, and 9. In vivo studies using the dose of 1 mg/kg of BPC, administered by subcutaneous route, presented similar result as those found in vitro, in the number of CFU-Cs. This latter finding may be explained by the inhibitory effects of this drug on the ACE activity, which probably result in increased levels of its substrate AcSDKP, a negative regulator of hematopoiesis. PMID:15658600

  6. Myelin Proteolipid Protein Complexes with αv Integrin and AMPA Receptors In Vivo and Regulates AMPA-Dependent Oligodendrocyte Progenitor Cell Migration through the Modulation of Cell-Surface GluR2 Expression

    PubMed Central

    Harlow, Danielle E.; Saul, Katherine E.; Komuro, Hitoshi

    2015-01-01

    In previous studies, stimulation of ionotropic AMPA/kainate glutamate receptors on cultured oligodendrocyte cells induced the formation of a signaling complex that includes the AMPA receptor, integrins, calcium-binding proteins, and, surprisingly, the myelin proteolipid protein (PLP). AMPA stimulation of cultured oligodendrocyte progenitor cells (OPCs) also caused an increase in OPC migration. The current studies focused primarily on the formation of the PLP–αv integrin–AMPA receptor complex in vivo and whether complex formation impacts OPC migration in the brain. We found that in wild-type cerebellum, PLP associates with αv integrin and the calcium-impermeable GluR2 subunit of the AMPA receptor, but in mice lacking PLP, αv integrin did not associate with GluR2. Live imaging studies of OPC migration in ex vivo cerebellar slices demonstrated altered OPC migratory responses to neurotransmitter stimulation in the absence of PLP and GluR2 or when αv integrin levels were reduced. Chemotaxis assays of purified OPCs revealed that AMPA stimulation was neither attractive nor repulsive but clearly increased the migration rate of wild-type but not PLP null OPCs. AMPA receptor stimulation of wild-type OPCs caused decreased cell-surface expression of the GluR2 AMPA receptor subunit and increased intracellular Ca2+ signaling, whereas PLP null OPCs did not reduce GluR2 at the cell surface or increase Ca2+ signaling in response to AMPA treatment. Together, these studies demonstrate that PLP is critical for OPC responses to glutamate signaling and has important implications for OPC responses when levels of glutamate are high in the extracellular space, such as following demyelination. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT After demyelination, such as occurs in multiple sclerosis, remyelination of axons is often incomplete, leading to loss of neuronal function and clinical disability. Remyelination may fail because oligodendrocyte precursor cells (OPCs) do not completely migrate into

  7. Scorpion-Toxin Mimics of CD4 in Complex with Human Immunodeficiency Virus gp120: Crystal Structures, Molecular Mimicry, and Neutralization Breadth

    SciTech Connect

    Huang, Chih-chin; Stricher, Francois; Martin, Loic; Decker, Julie M.; Majeed, Shahzad; Barthe, Phillippe; Hendrickson, Wayne A.; Robinson, James; Roumestand, Christian; Sodroski, Joseph; Wyatt, Richard; Shaw, George M.; Vita, Claudio; Kwong, Peter D.

    2010-07-19

    The binding surface on CD4 for the HIV-1 gp120 envelope glycoprotein has been transplanted previously onto a scorpion-toxin scaffold. Here, we use X-ray crystallography to characterize atomic-level details of gp120 with this transplant, CD4M33. Despite known envelope flexibility, the conformation of gp120 induced by CD4M33 was so similar to that induced by CD4 that localized measures were required to distinguish ligand-induced differences from lattice variation. To investigate relationships between structure, function, and mimicry, an F23 analog of CD4M33 was devised. Structural and thermodynamic analyses showed F23 to be a better molecular mimic of CD4 than CD4M33. F23 also showed increased neutralization breadth, against diverse isolates of HIV-1, HIV-2, and SIVcpz. Our results lend insight into the stability of the CD4 bound conformation of gp120, define measures that quantify molecular mimicry as a function of evolutionary distance, and suggest how such evaluations might be useful in developing mimetic antagonists with increased neutralization breadth.

  8. Snake venom toxins: toxicity and medicinal applications.

    PubMed

    Chan, Yau Sang; Cheung, Randy Chi Fai; Xia, Lixin; Wong, Jack Ho; Ng, Tzi Bun; Chan, Wai Yee

    2016-07-01

    Snake venoms are complex mixtures of small molecules and peptides/proteins, and most of them display certain kinds of bioactivities. They include neurotoxic, cytotoxic, cardiotoxic, myotoxic, and many different enzymatic activities. Snake envenomation is a significant health issue as millions of snakebites are reported annually. A large number of people are injured and die due to snake venom poisoning. However, several fatal snake venom toxins have found potential uses as diagnostic tools, therapeutic agent, or drug leads. In this review, different non-enzymatically active snake venom toxins which have potential therapeutic properties such as antitumor, antimicrobial, anticoagulating, and analgesic activities will be discussed. PMID:27245678

  9. Noninvasive Imaging of Administered Progenitor Cells

    SciTech Connect

    Steven R Bergmann, M.D., Ph.D.

    2012-12-03

    The objective of this research grant was to develop an approach for labeling progenitor cells, specifically those that we had identified as being able to replace ischemic heart cells, so that the distribution could be followed non-invasively. In addition, the research was aimed at determining whether administration of progenitor cells resulted in improved myocardial perfusion and function. The efficiency and toxicity of radiolabeling of progenitor cells was to be evaluated. For the proposed clinical protocol, subjects with end-stage ischemic coronary artery disease were to undergo a screening cardiac positron emission tomography (PET) scan using N-13 ammonia to delineate myocardial perfusion and function. If they qualified based on their PET scan, they would undergo an in-hospital protocol whereby CD34+ cells were stimulated by the administration of granulocytes-colony stimulating factor (G-CSF). CD34+ cells would then be isolated by apharesis, and labeled with indium-111 oxine. Cells were to be re-infused and subjects were to undergo single photon emission computed tomography (SPECT) scanning to evaluate uptake and distribution of labeled progenitor cells. Three months after administration of progenitor cells, a cardiac PET scan was to be repeated to evaluate changes in myocardial perfusion and/or function. Indium oxine is a radiopharmaceutical for labeling of autologous lymphocytes. Indium-111 (In-111) decays by electron capture with a t{sub ½} of 67.2 hours (2.8 days). Indium forms a saturated complex that is neutral, lipid soluble, and permeates the cell membrane. Within the cell, the indium-oxyquinolone complex labels via indium intracellular chelation. Following leukocyte labeling, ~77% of the In-111 is incorporated in the cell pellet. The presence of red cells and /or plasma reduces the labeling efficacy. Therefore, the product needed to be washed to eliminate plasma proteins. This repeated washing can damage cells. The CD34 selected product was a 90

  10. Photorhabdus luminescens W-14 insecticidal activity consists of at least two similar but distinct proteins. Purification and characterization of toxin A and toxin B.

    PubMed

    Guo, L; Fatig, R O; Orr, G L; Schafer, B W; Strickland, J A; Sukhapinda, K; Woodsworth, A T; Petell, J K

    1999-04-01

    Both the bacterium Photorhabdus luminescens alone and its symbiotic Photorhabdus-nematode complex are known to be highly pathogenic to insects. The nature of the insecticidal activity of Photorhabdus bacteria was investigated for its potential application as an insect control agent. It was found that in the fermentation broth of P. luminescens strain W-14, at least two proteins, toxin A and toxin B, independently contributed to the oral insecticidal activity against Southern corn rootworm. Purified toxin A and toxin B exhibited single bands on native polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis and two peptides of 208 and 63 kDa on SDS-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis. The native molecular weight of both the toxin A and toxin B was determined to be approximately 860 kDa, suggesting that they are tetrameric. NH2-terminal amino acid sequencing and Western analysis using monospecific antibodies to each toxin demonstrated that the two toxins were distinct but homologous. The oral potency (LD50) of toxin A and toxin B against Southern corn rootworm larvae was determined to be similar to that observed with highly potent Bt toxins against lepidopteran pests. In addition, it was found that the two peptides present in toxin B could be processed in vitro from a 281-kDa protoxin by endogenous P. luminescens proteases. Proteolytic processing was shown to enhance insecticidal activity. PMID:10092674

  11. Crystal Structures of the Staphylococcal Toxin SSL5 in Complex With Sialyl-Lewis X Reveal a Conserved Binding Site That Shares Common Features With Viral And Bacterial Sialic Acid-Binding Proteins

    SciTech Connect

    Baker, H.M.; Basu, I.; Chung, M.C.; Caradoc-Davies, T.; Fraser, J.D.; Baker, E.N.

    2009-06-02

    Staphylococcus aureus is a significant human pathogen. Among its large repertoire of secreted toxins is a group of staphylococcal superantigen-like proteins (SSLs). These are homologous to superantigens but do not have the same activity. SSL5 is shown here to bind to human granulocytes and to the cell surface receptors for human IgA (Fc alphaRI) and P-selectin [P-selectin glycoprotein ligand-1 (PSGL-1)] in a sialic acid (Sia)-dependent manner. Co-crystallization of SSL5 with the tetrasaccharide sialyl Lewis X (sLe(X)), a key determinant of PSGL-1 binding to P-selectin, led to crystal structures of the SSL5-sLe(X) complex at resolutions of 1.65 and 2.75 A for crystals at two pH values. In both structures, sLe(X) bound to a specific site on the surface of the C-terminal domain of SSL5 in a conformation identical with that bound by P-selectin. Conservation of the key carbohydrate binding residues indicates that this ability to bind human glycans is shared by a substantial subgroup of the SSLs, including SSL2, SSL3, SSL4, SSL5, SSL6, and SSL11. This indicates that the ability to target human glycans is an important property of this group of toxins. Structural comparisons also showed that the Sia binding site in SSL5 contains a substructure that is shared by other Sia binding proteins from bacteria as well as viruses and represents a common binding motif.

  12. Mutants of Escherichia coli Heat-Labile Toxin Act as Effective Mucosal Adjuvants for Nasal Delivery of an Acellular Pertussis Vaccine: Differential Effects of the Nontoxic AB Complex and Enzyme Activity on Th1 and Th2 Cells

    PubMed Central

    Ryan, Elizabeth J.; McNeela, Edel; Murphy, Geraldine A.; Stewart, Helen; O'hagan, Derek; Pizza, Mariagrazia; Rappuoli, Rino; Mills, Kingston H. G.

    1999-01-01

    Mucosal delivery of vaccines is dependent on the identification of safe and effective adjuvants that can enhance the immunogenicity of protein antigens administered by nasal or oral routes. In this study we demonstrate that two mutants of Escherichia coli heat-labile toxin (LT), LTK63, which lacks ADP-ribosylating activity, and LTR72, which has partial enzyme activity, act as potent mucosal adjuvants for the nasal delivery of an acellular pertussis (Pa) vaccine. Both LTK63 and LTR72 enhanced antigen-specific serum immunoglobulin G (IgG), secretory IgA, and local and systemic T-cell responses. Furthermore, using the murine respiratory challenge model for infection with Bordetella pertussis, we demonstrated that a nasally delivered diphtheria, tetanus, and acellular pertussis (DTPa) combination vaccine formulated with LTK63 as an adjuvant conferred a high level of protection, equivalent to that generated with a parenterally delivered DTPa vaccine formulated with alum. This study also provides significant new information on the roles of the binding and enzyme components of LT in the modulation of Th1 and Th2 responses. LTK63, which lacks enzyme activity, promoted T-cell responses with a mixed Th1–Th2 profile, but LTR72, which retains partial enzyme activity, and the wild-type toxin, especially at low dose, induced a more polarized Th2-type response and very high IgA and IgG antibody titers. Our findings suggest that the nontoxic AB complex has broad adjuvant activity for T-cell responses and that the ADP-ribosyltransferase activity of the A subunit also appears to modulate cytokine production, but its effect on T-cell subtypes, as well as enhancing, may be selectively suppressive. PMID:10569737

  13. Mutants of Escherichia coli heat-labile toxin act as effective mucosal adjuvants for nasal delivery of an acellular pertussis vaccine: differential effects of the nontoxic AB complex and enzyme activity on Th1 and Th2 cells.

    PubMed

    Ryan, E J; McNeela, E; Murphy, G A; Stewart, H; O'hagan, D; Pizza, M; Rappuoli, R; Mills, K H

    1999-12-01

    Mucosal delivery of vaccines is dependent on the identification of safe and effective adjuvants that can enhance the immunogenicity of protein antigens administered by nasal or oral routes. In this study we demonstrate that two mutants of Escherichia coli heat-labile toxin (LT), LTK63, which lacks ADP-ribosylating activity, and LTR72, which has partial enzyme activity, act as potent mucosal adjuvants for the nasal delivery of an acellular pertussis (Pa) vaccine. Both LTK63 and LTR72 enhanced antigen-specific serum immunoglobulin G (IgG), secretory IgA, and local and systemic T-cell responses. Furthermore, using the murine respiratory challenge model for infection with Bordetella pertussis, we demonstrated that a nasally delivered diphtheria, tetanus, and acellular pertussis (DTPa) combination vaccine formulated with LTK63 as an adjuvant conferred a high level of protection, equivalent to that generated with a parenterally delivered DTPa vaccine formulated with alum. This study also provides significant new information on the roles of the binding and enzyme components of LT in the modulation of Th1 and Th2 responses. LTK63, which lacks enzyme activity, promoted T-cell responses with a mixed Th1-Th2 profile, but LTR72, which retains partial enzyme activity, and the wild-type toxin, especially at low dose, induced a more polarized Th2-type response and very high IgA and IgG antibody titers. Our findings suggest that the nontoxic AB complex has broad adjuvant activity for T-cell responses and that the ADP-ribosyltransferase activity of the A subunit also appears to modulate cytokine production, but its effect on T-cell subtypes, as well as enhancing, may be selectively suppressive. PMID:10569737

  14. Array biosensor for detection of toxins

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

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

    2003-01-01

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

  15. Conditional Cooperativity of Toxin - Antitoxin Regulation Can Mediate Bistability between Growth and Dormancy

    PubMed Central

    Cataudella, Ilaria; Sneppen, Kim; Gerdes, Kenn; Mitarai, Namiko

    2013-01-01

    Many toxin-antitoxin operons are regulated by the toxin/antitoxin ratio by mechanisms collectively coined “conditional cooperativity”. Toxin and antitoxin form heteromers with different stoichiometric ratios, and the complex with the intermediate ratio works best as a transcription repressor. This allows transcription at low toxin level, strong repression at intermediate toxin level, and then again transcription at high toxin level. Such regulation has two interesting features; firstly, it provides a non-monotonous response to the concentration of one of the proteins, and secondly, it opens for ultra-sensitivity mediated by the sequestration of the functioning heteromers. We explore possible functions of conditional regulation in simple feedback motifs, and show that it can provide bistability for a wide range of parameters. We then demonstrate that the conditional cooperativity in toxin-antitoxin systems combined with the growth-inhibition activity of free toxin can mediate bistability between a growing state and a dormant state. PMID:24009488

  16. Conditional cooperativity of toxin - antitoxin regulation can mediate bistability between growth and dormancy.

    PubMed

    Cataudella, Ilaria; Sneppen, Kim; Gerdes, Kenn; Mitarai, Namiko

    2013-01-01

    Many toxin-antitoxin operons are regulated by the toxin/antitoxin ratio by mechanisms collectively coined "conditional cooperativity". Toxin and antitoxin form heteromers with different stoichiometric ratios, and the complex with the intermediate ratio works best as a transcription repressor. This allows transcription at low toxin level, strong repression at intermediate toxin level, and then again transcription at high toxin level. Such regulation has two interesting features; firstly, it provides a non-monotonous response to the concentration of one of the proteins, and secondly, it opens for ultra-sensitivity mediated by the sequestration of the functioning heteromers. We explore possible functions of conditional regulation in simple feedback motifs, and show that it can provide bistability for a wide range of parameters. We then demonstrate that the conditional cooperativity in toxin-antitoxin systems combined with the growth-inhibition activity of free toxin can mediate bistability between a growing state and a dormant state. PMID:24009488

  17. Functional Blood Progenitor Markers in Developing Human Liver Progenitors.

    PubMed

    Goldman, Orit; Cohen, Idan; Gouon-Evans, Valerie

    2016-08-01

    In the early fetal liver, hematopoietic progenitors expand and mature together with hepatoblasts, the liver progenitors of hepatocytes and cholangiocytes. Previous analyses of human fetal livers indicated that both progenitors support each other's lineage maturation and curiously share some cell surface markers including CD34 and CD133. Using the human embryonic stem cell (hESC) system, we demonstrate that virtually all hESC-derived hepatoblast-like cells (Hep cells) transition through a progenitor stage expressing CD34 and CD133 as well as GATA2, an additional hematopoietic marker that has not previously been associated with human hepatoblast development. Dynamic expression patterns for CD34, CD133, and GATA2 in hepatoblasts were validated in human fetal livers collected from the first and second trimesters of gestation. Knockdown experiments demonstrate that each gene also functions to regulate hepatic fate mostly in a cell-autonomous fashion, revealing unprecedented roles of fetal hematopoietic progenitor markers in human liver progenitors. PMID:27509132

  18. Linking bacterial type I toxins with their actions.

    PubMed

    Brielle, Régine; Pinel-Marie, Marie-Laure; Felden, Brice

    2016-04-01

    Bacterial type I toxin-antitoxin systems consist of stable toxin-encoding mRNAs whose expression is counteracted by unstable RNA antitoxins. Accumulating evidence suggests that these players belong to broad regulatory networks influencing overall bacterial physiology. The majority of known transmembrane type I toxic peptides have conserved structural characteristics. However, recent studies demonstrated that their mechanisms of toxicity are diverse and complex. To better assess the current state of the art, type I toxins can be grouped into two classes according to their location and mechanisms of action: membrane-associated toxins acting by pore formation and/or by nucleoid condensation; and cytosolic toxins inducing nucleic acid cleavage. This classification will evolve as a result of future investigations. PMID:26874964

  19. Naturally Occurring Food Toxins

    PubMed Central

    Dolan, Laurie C.; Matulka, Ray A.; Burdock, George A.

    2010-01-01

    Although many foods contain toxins as a naturally-occurring constituent or, are formed as the result of handling or processing, the incidence of adverse reactions to food is relatively low. The low incidence of adverse effects is the result of some pragmatic solutions by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and other regulatory agencies through the creative use of specifications, action levels, tolerances, warning labels and prohibitions. Manufacturers have also played a role by setting limits on certain substances and developing mitigation procedures for process-induced toxins. Regardless of measures taken by regulators and food producers to protect consumers from natural food toxins, consumption of small levels of these materials is unavoidable. Although the risk for toxicity due to consumption of food toxins is fairly low, there is always the possibility of toxicity due to contamination, overconsumption, allergy or an unpredictable idiosyncratic response. The purpose of this review is to provide a toxicological and regulatory overview of some of the toxins present in some commonly consumed foods, and where possible, discuss the steps that have been taken to reduce consumer exposure, many of which are possible because of the unique process of food regulation in the United States. PMID:22069686

  20. Progenitors of type Ia supernovae

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Maeda, Keiichi; Terada, Yukikatsu

    2016-07-01

    Natures of progenitors of type Ia Supernovae (SNe Ia) have not yet been clarified. There has been long and intensive discussion on whether the so-called single degenerate (SD) scenario or the double degenerate (DD) scenario, or anything else, could explain a major population of SNe Ia, but the conclusion has not yet been reached. With rapidly increasing observational data and new theoretical ideas, the field of studying the SN Ia progenitors has been quickly developing, and various new insights have been obtained in recent years. This paper aims at providing a summary of the current situation regarding the SN Ia progenitors, both in theory and observations. It seems difficult to explain the emerging diversity seen in observations of SNe Ia by a single population, and we emphasize that it is important to clarify links between different progenitor scenarios and different sub-classes of SNe Ia.

  1. Structural interactions of a voltage sensor toxin with lipid membranes

    PubMed Central

    Mihailescu, Mihaela; Krepkiy, Dmitriy; Milescu, Mirela; Gawrisch, Klaus; Swartz, Kenton J.; White, Stephen

    2014-01-01

    Protein toxins from tarantula venom alter the activity of diverse ion channel proteins, including voltage, stretch, and ligand-activated cation channels. Although tarantula toxins have been shown to partition into membranes, and the membrane is thought to play an important role in their activity, the structural interactions between these toxins and lipid membranes are poorly understood. Here, we use solid-state NMR and neutron diffraction to investigate the interactions between a voltage sensor toxin (VSTx1) and lipid membranes, with the goal of localizing the toxin in the membrane and determining its influence on membrane structure. Our results demonstrate that VSTx1 localizes to the headgroup region of lipid membranes and produces a thinning of the bilayer. The toxin orients such that many basic residues are in the aqueous phase, all three Trp residues adopt interfacial positions, and several hydrophobic residues are within the membrane interior. One remarkable feature of this preferred orientation is that the surface of the toxin that mediates binding to voltage sensors is ideally positioned within the lipid bilayer to favor complex formation between the toxin and the voltage sensor. PMID:25453087

  2. Structural interactions of a voltage sensor toxin with lipid membranes.

    PubMed

    Mihailescu, Mihaela; Krepkiy, Dmitriy; Milescu, Mirela; Gawrisch, Klaus; Swartz, Kenton J; White, Stephen

    2014-12-16

    Protein toxins from tarantula venom alter the activity of diverse ion channel proteins, including voltage, stretch, and ligand-activated cation channels. Although tarantula toxins have been shown to partition into membranes, and the membrane is thought to play an important role in their activity, the structural interactions between these toxins and lipid membranes are poorly understood. Here, we use solid-state NMR and neutron diffraction to investigate the interactions between a voltage sensor toxin (VSTx1) and lipid membranes, with the goal of localizing the toxin in the membrane and determining its influence on membrane structure. Our results demonstrate that VSTx1 localizes to the headgroup region of lipid membranes and produces a thinning of the bilayer. The toxin orients such that many basic residues are in the aqueous phase, all three Trp residues adopt interfacial positions, and several hydrophobic residues are within the membrane interior. One remarkable feature of this preferred orientation is that the surface of the toxin that mediates binding to voltage sensors is ideally positioned within the lipid bilayer to favor complex formation between the toxin and the voltage sensor. PMID:25453087

  3. Short Toxin-like Proteins Abound in Cnidaria Genomes

    PubMed Central

    Tirosh, Yitshak; Linial, Itai; Askenazi, Manor; Linial, Michal

    2012-01-01

    Cnidaria is a rich phylum that includes thousands of marine species. In this study, we focused on Anthozoa and Hydrozoa that are represented by the Nematostella vectensis (Sea anemone) and Hydra magnipapillata genomes. We present a method for ranking the toxin-like candidates from complete proteomes of Cnidaria. Toxin-like functions were revealed using ClanTox, a statistical machine-learning predictor trained on ion channel inhibitors from venomous animals. Fundamental features that were emphasized in training ClanTox include cysteines and their spacing along the sequences. Among the 83,000 proteins derived from Cnidaria representatives, we found 170 candidates that fulfill the properties of toxin-like-proteins, the vast majority of which were previously unrecognized as toxins. An additional 394 short proteins exhibit characteristics of toxin-like proteins at a moderate degree of confidence. Remarkably, only 11% of the predicted toxin-like proteins were previously classified as toxins. Based on our prediction methodology and manual annotation, we inferred functions for over 400 of these proteins. Such functions include protease inhibitors, membrane pore formation, ion channel blockers and metal binding proteins. Many of the proteins belong to small families of paralogs. We conclude that the evolutionary expansion of toxin-like proteins in Cnidaria contributes to their fitness in the complex environment of the aquatic ecosystem. PMID:23202321

  4. Regulation of toxin gene expression in Clostridium perfringens.

    PubMed

    Ohtani, Kaori; Shimizu, Tohru

    2015-05-01

    The Gram-positive, anaerobic, spore-forming, rod-shaped Clostridium perfringens is widely distributed in nature, especially in soil and the gastrointestinal tract of humans and animals. C. perfringens causes clostridial myonecrosis (or gas gangrene), enteritis and enterotoxemia in humans and livestock by producing numerous extracellular toxins and enzymes. The toxin gene expression is regulated by a two-component regulatory system and regulatory RNA VirR/VirS-VR-RNA cascade. The VirR/VirS system was originally found in a type A strain, but a recent report showed that it is also important for the toxin gene regulation in other types of strains. Two types of cell-cell signaling, i.e., agr-system and AI-2 signaling, are also important for the regulation of toxin genes. Several regulatory systems independent from the VirR/VirS system, including virX, the orphan histidine kinase ReeS and orphan response regulator RevR, are also involved in the regulation of toxin genes. In addition, the expression of toxin genes is upregulated after contact with Caco-2 cells. C. perfringens has a complex regulatory network for toxin gene expression and thus the coordination of toxin gene expression is important for the process of infection. PMID:25303832

  5. Membrane-Binding Mechanism of Clostridium perfringens Alpha-Toxin

    PubMed Central

    Oda, Masataka; Terao, Yutaka; Sakurai, Jun; Nagahama, Masahiro

    2015-01-01

    Clostridium perfringens alpha-toxin is a key mediator of gas gangrene, which is a life-threatening infection that manifests as fever, pain, edema, myonecrosis, and gas production. Alpha-toxin possesses phospholipase C and sphingomyelinase activities. The toxin is composed of an N-terminal domain (1–250 aa, N-domain), which is the catalytic site, and a C-terminal domain (251–370 aa, C-domain), which is the membrane-binding site. Immunization of mice with the C-domain of alpha-toxin prevents the gas gangrene caused by C. perfringens, whereas immunization with the N-domain has no effect. The central loop domain (55–93 aa), especially H….SW84Y85….G, plays an important role in the interaction with ganglioside GM1a. The toxin binds to lipid rafts in the presence of a GM1a/TrkA complex, and metabolites from phosphatidylcholine to diacylglycerol through the enzymatic activity of alpha-toxin itself. These membrane dynamics leads to the activation of endogenous PLCγ-1 via TrkA. In addition, treatment with alpha-toxin leads to the formation of diacylglycerol at membrane rafts in ganglioside-deficient DonQ cells; this in turn triggers endocytosis and cell death. This article summarizes the current the membrane-binding mechanism of alpha-toxin in detail. PMID:26633512

  6. The bacterial antitoxin HipB establishes a ternary complex with operator DNA and phosphorylated toxin HipA to regulate bacterial persistence

    PubMed Central

    Wen, Yurong; Behiels, Ester; Felix, Jan; Elegheert, Jonathan; Vergauwen, Bjorn; Devreese, Bart; Savvides, Savvas N.

    2014-01-01

    Nearly all bacteria exhibit a type of phenotypic growth described as persistence that is thought to underlie antibiotic tolerance and recalcitrant chronic infections. The chromosomally encoded high-persistence (Hip) toxin–antitoxin proteins HipASO and HipBSO from Shewanella oneidensis, a proteobacterium with unusual respiratory capacities, constitute a type II toxin–antitoxin protein module. Here we show that phosphorylated HipASO can engage in an unexpected ternary complex with HipBSO and double-stranded operator DNA that is distinct from the prototypical counterpart complex from Escherichia coli. The structure of HipBSO in complex with operator DNA reveals a flexible C-terminus that is sequestered by HipASO in the ternary complex, indicative of its role in binding HipASO to abolish its function in persistence. The structure of HipASO in complex with a non-hydrolyzable ATP analogue shows that HipASO autophosphorylation is coupled to an unusual conformational change of its phosphorylation loop. However, HipASO is unable to phosphorylate the translation factor Elongation factor Tu, contrary to previous reports, but in agreement with more recent findings. Our studies suggest that the phosphorylation state of HipA is an important factor in persistence and that the structural and mechanistic diversity of HipAB modules as regulatory factors in bacterial persistence is broader than previously thought. PMID:25056321

  7. [Toxins as a biological weapon].

    PubMed

    Płusa, Tadeusz

    2015-09-01

    The criteria for recognizing a chemical compound for the toxin are vague and gave it the possibility of inclusion in this group a number of biological agents. Toxins list is extensive, but the interest is focused on bacterial toxins, poisons derived from snake venoms, algae and plant proteins, and small molecules. Particular attention is focused on the so-called "sea" toxins, which include tetrodotoxin, brevetoxin and saxitoxin. This indicates the search for a new hitherto unknown potential bioterrorist threats. PMID:26449572

  8. Toxin plasmids of Clostridium perfringens.

    PubMed

    Li, Jihong; Adams, Vicki; Bannam, Trudi L; Miyamoto, Kazuaki; Garcia, Jorge P; Uzal, Francisco A; Rood, Julian I; McClane, Bruce A

    2013-06-01

    In both humans and animals, Clostridium perfringens is an important cause of histotoxic infections and diseases originating in the intestines, such as enteritis and enterotoxemia. The virulence of this Gram-positive, anaerobic bacterium is heavily dependent upon its prolific toxin-producing ability. Many of the ∼16 toxins produced by C. perfringens are encoded by large plasmids that range in size from ∼45 kb to ∼140 kb. These plasmid-encoded toxins are often closely associated with mobile elements. A C. perfringens strain can carry up to three different toxin plasmids, with a single plasmid carrying up to three distinct toxin genes. Molecular Koch's postulate analyses have established the importance of several plasmid-encoded toxins when C. perfringens disease strains cause enteritis or enterotoxemias. Many toxin plasmids are closely related, suggesting a common evolutionary origin. In particular, most toxin plasmids and some antibiotic resistance plasmids of C. perfringens share an ∼35-kb region containing a Tn916-related conjugation locus named tcp (transfer of clostridial plasmids). This tcp locus can mediate highly efficient conjugative transfer of these toxin or resistance plasmids. For example, conjugative transfer of a toxin plasmid from an infecting strain to C. perfringens normal intestinal flora strains may help to amplify and prolong an infection. Therefore, the presence of toxin genes on conjugative plasmids, particularly in association with insertion sequences that may mobilize these toxin genes, likely provides C. perfringens with considerable virulence plasticity and adaptability when it causes diseases originating in the gastrointestinal tract. PMID:23699255

  9. Phylogeny of Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli O157 isolated from cattle and clinically ill humans

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Cattle are a major reservoir for Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli O157 (STEC O157) and harbor multiple genetic subtypes that do not all associate with human disease. STEC O157 evolved from an E. coli O55:H7 progenitor, however, a lack of genome sequence has hindered investigations on the dive...

  10. A common origin for the bacterial toxin-antitoxin systems parD and ccd, suggested by analyses of toxin/target and toxin/antitoxin interactions.

    PubMed

    Smith, Andrew B; López-Villarejo, Juan; Diago-Navarro, Elizabeth; Mitchenall, Lesley A; Barendregt, Arjan; Heck, Albert J; Lemonnier, Marc; Maxwell, Anthony; Díaz-Orejas, Ramón

    2012-01-01

    Bacterial toxin-antitoxin (TA) systems encode two proteins, a potent inhibitor of cell proliferation (toxin) and its specific antidote (antitoxin). Structural data has revealed striking similarities between the two model TA toxins CcdB, a DNA gyrase inhibitor encoded by the ccd system of plasmid F, and Kid, a site-specific endoribonuclease encoded by the parD system of plasmid R1. While a common structural fold seemed at odds with the two clearly different modes of action of these toxins, the possibility of functional crosstalk between the parD and ccd systems, which would further point to their common evolutionary origin, has not been documented. Here, we show that the cleavage of RNA and the inhibition of protein synthesis by the Kid toxin, two activities that are specifically counteracted by its cognate Kis antitoxin, are altered, but not inhibited, by the CcdA antitoxin. In addition, Kis was able to inhibit the stimulation of DNA gyrase-mediated cleavage of DNA by CcdB, albeit less efficiently than CcdA. We further show that physical interactions between the toxins and antitoxins of the different systems do occur and define the stoichiometry of the complexes formed. We found that CcdB did not degrade RNA nor did Kid have any reproducible effect on the tested DNA gyrase activities, suggesting that these toxins evolved to reach different, rather than common, cellular targets. PMID:23029540

  11. [Detection of Staphylococcus aureus toxins using immuno-PCR].

    PubMed

    Maerle, A V; Riazantsev, D Iu; Dmitrenko, O A; Petrova, E Ia; Komaleva, R L; Sergeev, I V; Trofimov, D Iu; Zavriev, S K

    2014-01-01

    A highly sensitive test system, based on the method of immuno-PCR, was developed for the detection of two staphylococcal toxins: enterotoxin A (SEA) and toxic shock syndrome toxin (TSST). A key element of the developed systems was obtaining supramolecular complexes of bisbiotinylated oligodeoxynucleotides and streptavidin, which were used as DNA tags. Specificity studies showed no cross-reactivity when determining SEA and TSST. The sensitivity of detection of these toxins in the culture supernatants S. aureus was not less than 10 pg/mL. PMID:25895352

  12. CYANOBACTERIA AND THEIR TOXINS.

    EPA Science Inventory

    Science Questions

    Harmful algal blooms (HAB) of cyanobacteria, also known as blue-green algae, have recently become more spatially and temporally prevalent in the US and worldwide. Cyanobacteria and their highly potent toxins are a significant hazard for human health and ...

  13. CYANOBACTERIA AND THEIR TOXINS

    EPA Science Inventory

    Science Questions

    Harmful algal blooms (HAB) of cyanobacteria, also known as blue-green algae, have recently become more spatially and temporally prevalent in the US and worldwide. Cyanobacteria and their highly potent toxins are a significant hazard for human health and ...

  14. Toxin-induced respiratory distress.

    PubMed

    McKay, Charles A

    2014-02-01

    This article describes the impact of various toxic substances on the airway and pulmonary system. Pulmonary anatomy and physiology provide the basis for understanding the response to toxin-induced injury. Simple asphyxiants displace oxygen from the inspired air. Respiratory irritants include water-soluble and water-insoluble compounds. Several inhaled agents produce direct airway injury, which may be mediated by caustic, thermal, and hydrocarbon exposures. Unique pulmonary toxins and toxicants are discussed, as well as inhaled toxin mixtures. Several inhaled toxins may also impair oxygen transport. The pulmonary system may also provide a mechanism for systemic toxin delivery on respiratory exposure. PMID:24275172

  15. [Protein toxins of Staphylococcus aureus].

    PubMed

    Shamsutdinov, A F; Tiurin, Iu A

    2014-01-01

    Main scientific-research studies regarding protein bacterial toxins of the most widespread bacteria that belong to Staphylococcus spp. genus and in particular the most pathogenic species for humans--Staphylococcus aureus, are analyzed. Structural and biological properties of protein toxins that have received the name of staphylococcus pyrogenic toxins (PTSAg) are presented. Data regarding genetic regulation of secretion and synthesis of these toxins and 3 main regulatory genetic systems (agr--accessory gene regulator, xpr--extracellular protein regulator, sar--staphylococcal accessory regulator) that coordinate synthesis of the most important protein toxins and enzymes for virulence of S. aureus, are presented. PMID:25051707

  16. Simultaneous characterization of progenitor cell compartments in adult human liver.

    PubMed

    Porretti, Laura; Cattaneo, Alessandra; Colombo, Federico; Lopa, Raffaella; Rossi, Giorgio; Mazzaferro, Vincenzo; Battiston, Carlo; Svegliati-Baroni, Gianluca; Bertolini, Francesco; Rebulla, Paolo; Prati, Daniele

    2010-01-01

    The human liver is a complex tissue consisting of epithelial, endothelial, hematopoietic, and mesenchymal elements that probably derive from multiple lineage-committed progenitors, but no comprehensive study aimed at identifying and characterizing intrahepatic precursors has yet been published. Cell suspensions for this study were obtained by enzymatic digestion of liver specimens taken from 20 patients with chronic liver disease and 13 multiorgan donors. Stem and progenitor cells were first isolated, amplified, and characterized ex vivo according to previously validated methods, and then optimized flow cytometry was used to assess their relative frequencies and characterize their immunophenotypes in the clinical specimens. Stem and progenitor cells committed to hematopoietic, endothelial, epithelial, and mesenchymal lineages were clearly identifiable in livers from both healthy and diseased subjects. Within the mononuclear liver cell compartment, epithelial progenitors [epithelial cell adhesion molecule (EpCAM)(+)/CD49f(+)/CD29(+)/CD45(-)] accounted for 2.7-3.5% whereas hematopoietic (CD34(+)/CD45(+)), endothelial [vascular endothelial growth factor-2 (KDR)(+)/CD146(+)/CD45(-)], and mesenchymal [CD73(+)/CD105(+)/CD90 (Thy-1)(+)/CD45 (-)] stem cells and progenitors accounted for smaller fractions (0.02-0.6%). The patients' livers had higher percentages of hematopoietic and endothelial precursors than those of the donors. In conclusion, we identified and characterized precursors committed to four different lineages in adult human liver. We also optimized a flow cytometry approach that will be useful in exploring the contribution of these cells to the pathogenesis of liver disease. PMID:19960544

  17. Studies on marine toxins: chemical and biological aspects

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stonik, Valentin A.; Stonik, Inna V.

    2010-07-01

    The structures and mechanisms of biological action of the best known representatives of the main groups of marine toxins are presented. It is shown that many compounds have complex chemical structures and possess extremely high toxicities. Characteristic features of isolation, structure determination and syntheses of these compounds using the achievement of modern organic chemistry are discussed. The methods of identification and quantitative analysis of marine toxins are briefly reviewed.

  18. Embryonic Heart Progenitors and Cardiogenesis

    PubMed Central

    Brade, Thomas; Pane, Luna S.; Moretti, Alessandra; Chien, Kenneth R.; Laugwitz, Karl-Ludwig

    2013-01-01

    The mammalian heart is a highly specialized organ, comprised of many different cell types arising from distinct embryonic progenitor populations during cardiogenesis. Three precursor populations have been identified to contribute to different myocytic and nonmyocytic cell lineages of the heart: cardiogenic mesoderm cells (CMC), the proepicardium (PE), and cardiac neural crest cells (CNCCs). This review will focus on molecular cues necessary for proper induction, expansion, and lineage-specific differentiation of these progenitor populations during cardiac development in vivo. Moreover, we will briefly discuss how the knowledge gained on embryonic heart progenitor biology can be used to develop novel therapeutic strategies for the management of congenital heart disease as well as for improvement of cardiac function in ischemic heart disease. PMID:24086063

  19. SVM-based prediction of propeptide cleavage sites in spider toxins identifies toxin innovation in an Australian tarantula.

    PubMed

    Wong, Emily S W; Hardy, Margaret C; Wood, David; Bailey, Timothy; King, Glenn F

    2013-01-01

    Spider neurotoxins are commonly used as pharmacological tools and are a popular source of novel compounds with therapeutic and agrochemical potential. Since venom peptides are inherently toxic, the host spider must employ strategies to avoid adverse effects prior to venom use. It is partly for this reason that most spider toxins encode a protective proregion that upon enzymatic cleavage is excised from the mature peptide. In order to identify the mature toxin sequence directly from toxin transcripts, without resorting to protein sequencing, the propeptide cleavage site in the toxin precursor must be predicted bioinformatically. We evaluated different machine learning strategies (support vector machines, hidden Markov model and decision tree) and developed an algorithm (SpiderP) for prediction of propeptide cleavage sites in spider toxins. Our strategy uses a support vector machine (SVM) framework that combines both local and global sequence information. Our method is superior or comparable to current tools for prediction of propeptide sequences in spider toxins. Evaluation of the SVM method on an independent test set of known toxin sequences yielded 96% sensitivity and 100% specificity. Furthermore, we sequenced five novel peptides (not used to train the final predictor) from the venom of the Australian tarantula Selenotypus plumipes to test the accuracy of the predictor and found 80% sensitivity and 99.6% 8-mer specificity. Finally, we used the predictor together with homology information to predict and characterize seven groups of novel toxins from the deeply sequenced venom gland transcriptome of S. plumipes, which revealed structural complexity and innovations in the evolution of the toxins. The precursor prediction tool (SpiderP) is freely available on ArachnoServer (http://www.arachnoserver.org/spiderP.html), a web portal to a comprehensive relational database of spider toxins. All training data, test data, and scripts used are available from the Spider

  20. SVM-Based Prediction of Propeptide Cleavage Sites in Spider Toxins Identifies Toxin Innovation in an Australian Tarantula

    PubMed Central

    Wong, Emily S. W.; Hardy, Margaret C.; Wood, David; Bailey, Timothy; King, Glenn F.

    2013-01-01

    Spider neurotoxins are commonly used as pharmacological tools and are a popular source of novel compounds with therapeutic and agrochemical potential. Since venom peptides are inherently toxic, the host spider must employ strategies to avoid adverse effects prior to venom use. It is partly for this reason that most spider toxins encode a protective proregion that upon enzymatic cleavage is excised from the mature peptide. In order to identify the mature toxin sequence directly from toxin transcripts, without resorting to protein sequencing, the propeptide cleavage site in the toxin precursor must be predicted bioinformatically. We evaluated different machine learning strategies (support vector machines, hidden Markov model and decision tree) and developed an algorithm (SpiderP) for prediction of propeptide cleavage sites in spider toxins. Our strategy uses a support vector machine (SVM) framework that combines both local and global sequence information. Our method is superior or comparable to current tools for prediction of propeptide sequences in spider toxins. Evaluation of the SVM method on an independent test set of known toxin sequences yielded 96% sensitivity and 100% specificity. Furthermore, we sequenced five novel peptides (not used to train the final predictor) from the venom of the Australian tarantula Selenotypus plumipes to test the accuracy of the predictor and found 80% sensitivity and 99.6% 8-mer specificity. Finally, we used the predictor together with homology information to predict and characterize seven groups of novel toxins from the deeply sequenced venom gland transcriptome of S. plumipes, which revealed structural complexity and innovations in the evolution of the toxins. The precursor prediction tool (SpiderP) is freely available on ArachnoServer (http://www.arachnoserver.org/spiderP.html), a web portal to a comprehensive relational database of spider toxins. All training data, test data, and scripts used are available from the Spider

  1. The Progenitors of Thermonuclear Supernovae

    SciTech Connect

    Piersanti, L.; Straniero, O.; Tornambe, A.; Dominguez, I.

    2009-05-03

    In the framework of the rotating Double Degenerate Scenario for type Ia Supernovae progenitors, we show that the dichotomy between explosive events in early and late type galaxies can be easily explained. Assuming that more massive progenitors produce slow-decline (high-luminosity) light curve, it comes out that, at the current age of the Universe, in late type galaxies the continuous star formation provides very massive exploding objects (prompt component) corresponding to slow-decline (bright) SNe; on the other hand, in early type galaxies, where star formation ended many billions years ago, only low mass ''normal luminosity'' objects (delayed component) are present.

  2. Dinophysis Toxins: Causative Organisms, Distribution and Fate in Shellfish

    PubMed Central

    Reguera, Beatriz; Riobó, Pilar; Rodríguez, Francisco; Díaz, Patricio A.; Pizarro, Gemita; Paz, Beatriz; Franco, José M.; Blanco, Juan

    2014-01-01

    Several Dinophysis species produce diarrhoetic toxins (okadaic acid and dinophysistoxins) and pectenotoxins, and cause gastointestinal illness, Diarrhetic Shellfish Poisoning (DSP), even at low cell densities (<103 cells·L−1). They are the main threat, in terms of days of harvesting bans, to aquaculture in Northern Japan, Chile, and Europe. Toxicity and toxin profiles are very variable, more between strains than species. The distribution of DSP events mirrors that of shellfish production areas that have implemented toxin regulations, otherwise misinterpreted as bacterial or viral contamination. Field observations and laboratory experiments have shown that most of the toxins produced by Dinophysis are released into the medium, raising questions about the ecological role of extracelular toxins and their potential uptake by shellfish. Shellfish contamination results from a complex balance between food selection, adsorption, species-specific enzymatic transformations, and allometric processes. Highest risk areas are those combining Dinophysis strains with high cell content of okadaates, aquaculture with predominance of mytilids (good accumulators of toxins), and consumers who frequently include mussels in their diet. Regions including pectenotoxins in their regulated phycotoxins will suffer from much longer harvesting bans and from disloyal competition with production areas where these toxins have been deregulated. PMID:24447996

  3. Toxins and drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Harvey, Alan L

    2014-12-15

    Components from venoms have stimulated many drug discovery projects, with some notable successes. These are briefly reviewed, from captopril to ziconotide. However, there have been many more disappointments on the road from toxin discovery to approval of a new medicine. Drug discovery and development is an inherently risky business, and the main causes of failure during development programmes are outlined in order to highlight steps that might be taken to increase the chances of success with toxin-based drug discovery. These include having a clear focus on unmet therapeutic needs, concentrating on targets that are well-validated in terms of their relevance to the disease in question, making use of phenotypic screening rather than molecular-based assays, and working with development partners with the resources required for the long and expensive development process. PMID:25448391

  4. Progenitor Cells and Podocyte Regeneration

    PubMed Central

    Shankland, Stuart J.; Pippin, Jeffrey W.; Duffield, Jeremy S.

    2014-01-01

    The very limited ability of adult podocytes to proliferate in vivo is clinically significant because: podocytes form a vascular barrier which is functionally critical to the nephron; podocyte hypoplasia is a characteristic of disease; and inadequate regeneration of podocytes is a major cause of persistent podocyte hypoplasia. Excessive podocyte loss or inadequate replacement leads to glomerulosclerosis in many progressive kidney diseases. Thus, restoration of podocyte cell density is almost certainly reliant on regeneration by podocyte progenitors. However such putative progenitors have remained elusive until recently. In this review we describe the developmental processes leading to podocyte and parietal epithelial cell (PEC) formation during glomerulogenesis. We compare evidence that in normal human kidneys PECs expressing ‘progenitor’ markers CD133 and CD24 can differentiate into podocytes in vitro and in vivo with evidence from animal models suggesting a more limited role of PEC-capacity to serve as podocyte progenitors in adults. We will highlight tantalizing new evidence that specialized vascular wall cells of afferent arterioles including those which produce renin in healthy kidney, provide a novel local progenitor source of new PECs and podocytes in response to podocyte hypoplasia in the adult, and draw comparisons with glomerulogenesis. PMID:25217270

  5. In Vitro Pancreas Organogenesis from Dispersed Mouse Embryonic Progenitors

    PubMed Central

    Grapin-Botton, Anne

    2014-01-01

    The pancreas is an essential organ that regulates glucose homeostasis and secretes digestive enzymes. Research on pancreas embryogenesis has led to the development of protocols to produce pancreatic cells from stem cells 1. The whole embryonic organ can be cultured at multiple stages of development 2-4. These culture methods have been useful to test drugs and to image developmental processes. However the expansion of the organ is very limited and morphogenesis is not faithfully recapitulated since the organ flattens. We propose three-dimensional (3D) culture conditions that enable the efficient expansion of dissociated mouse embryonic pancreatic progenitors. By manipulating the composition of the culture medium it is possible to generate either hollow spheres, mainly composed of pancreatic progenitors expanding in their initial state, or, complex organoids which progress to more mature expanding progenitors and differentiate into endocrine, acinar and ductal cells and which spontaneously self-organize to resemble the embryonic pancreas. We show here that the in vitro process recapitulates many aspects of natural pancreas development. This culture system is suitable to investigate how cells cooperate to form an organ by reducing its initial complexity to few progenitors. It is a model that reproduces the 3D architecture of the pancreas and that is therefore useful to study morphogenesis, including polarization of epithelial structures and branching. It is also appropriate to assess the response to mechanical cues of the niche such as stiffness and the effects on cell´s tensegrity. PMID:25079453

  6. LPS induces pulp progenitor cell recruitment via complement activation.

    PubMed

    Chmilewsky, F; Jeanneau, C; Laurent, P; About, I

    2015-01-01

    Complement system, a major component of the natural immunity, has been recently identified as an important mediator of the dentin-pulp regeneration process through STRO-1 pulp cell recruitment by the C5a active fragment. Moreover, it has been shown recently that under stimulation with lipoteichoic acid, a complex component of the Gram-positive bacteria cell wall, human pulp fibroblasts are able to synthesize all proteins required for complement activation. However, Gram-negative bacteria, which are also involved in tooth decay, are known as powerful activators of complement system and inflammation. Here, we investigated the role of Gram-negative bacteria-induced complement activation on the pulp progenitor cell recruitment using lipopolysaccharide (LPS), a major component of all Gram-negative bacteria. Our results show that incubating pulp fibroblasts with LPS induced membrane attack complex formation and C5a release in serum-free fibroblast cultures. The produced C5a binds to the pulp progenitor cells' membrane and induces their migration toward the LPS stimulation chamber, as revealed by the dynamic transwell migration assays. The inhibition of this migration by the C5aR-specific antagonist W54011 indicates that the pulp progenitor migration is mediated by the interaction between C5a and C5aR. Our findings demonstrate, for the first time, a direct interaction between the recruitment of progenitor pulp cells and the activation of complement system generated by pulp fibroblast stimulation with LPS. PMID:25359783

  7. In vitro pancreas organogenesis from dispersed mouse embryonic progenitors.

    PubMed

    Greggio, Chiara; De Franceschi, Filippo; Figueiredo-Larsen, Manuel; Grapin-Botton, Anne

    2014-01-01

    The pancreas is an essential organ that regulates glucose homeostasis and secretes digestive enzymes. Research on pancreas embryogenesis has led to the development of protocols to produce pancreatic cells from stem cells (1). The whole embryonic organ can be cultured at multiple stages of development (2-4). These culture methods have been useful to test drugs and to image developmental processes. However the expansion of the organ is very limited and morphogenesis is not faithfully recapitulated since the organ flattens. We propose three-dimensional (3D) culture conditions that enable the efficient expansion of dissociated mouse embryonic pancreatic progenitors. By manipulating the composition of the culture medium it is possible to generate either hollow spheres, mainly composed of pancreatic progenitors expanding in their initial state, or, complex organoids which progress to more mature expanding progenitors and differentiate into endocrine, acinar and ductal cells and which spontaneously self-organize to resemble the embryonic pancreas. We show here that the in vitro process recapitulates many aspects of natural pancreas development. This culture system is suitable to investigate how cells cooperate to form an organ by reducing its initial complexity to few progenitors. It is a model that reproduces the 3D architecture of the pancreas and that is therefore useful to study morphogenesis, including polarization of epithelial structures and branching. It is also appropriate to assess the response to mechanical cues of the niche such as stiffness and the effects on cell´s tensegrity. PMID:25079453

  8. Method for detecting biological toxins

    SciTech Connect

    Ligler, F.S.; Campbell, J.R.

    1992-01-01

    Biological toxins are indirectly detected by using polymerase chain reaction to amplify unique nucleic acid sequences coding for the toxins or enzymes unique to toxin synthesis. Buffer, primers coding for the unique nucleic acid sequences and an amplifying enzyme are added to a sample suspected of containing the toxin. The mixture is then cycled thermally to exponentially amplify any of these unique nucleic acid sequences present in the sample. The amplified sequences can be detected by various means, including fluorescence. Detection of the amplified sequences is indicative of the presence of toxin in the original sample. By using more than one set of labeled primers, the method can be used to simultaneously detect several toxins in a sample.

  9. Ricin detection: tracking active toxin.

    PubMed

    Bozza, William P; Tolleson, William H; Rosado, Leslie A Rivera; Zhang, Baolin

    2015-01-01

    Ricin is a plant toxin with high bioterrorism potential due to its natural abundance and potency in inducing cell death. Early detection of the active toxin is essential for developing appropriate countermeasures. Here we review concepts for designing ricin detection methods, including mechanism of action of the toxin, advantages and disadvantages of current detection assays, and perspectives on the future development of rapid and reliable methods for detecting ricin in environmental samples. PMID:25481398

  10. Recombinant Toxins for Cancer Treatment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pastan, Ira; Fitzgerald, David

    1991-11-01

    Recombinant toxins target cell surface receptors and antigens on tumor cells. They kill by mechanisms different from conventional chemotherapy, so that cross resistance to conventional chemotherapeutic agents should not be a problem. Furthermore, they are not mutagens and should not induce secondary malignancies or accelerate progression of benign malignancies. They can be mass-produced cheaply in bacteria as homogeneous proteins. Either growth factor-toxin fusions or antibody-toxin fusions can be chosen, depending on the cellular target.

  11. Toxin Plasmids of Clostridium perfringens

    PubMed Central

    Li, Jihong; Adams, Vicki; Bannam, Trudi L.; Miyamoto, Kazuaki; Garcia, Jorge P.; Uzal, Francisco A.; Rood, Julian I.

    2013-01-01

    SUMMARY In both humans and animals, Clostridium perfringens is an important cause of histotoxic infections and diseases originating in the intestines, such as enteritis and enterotoxemia. The virulence of this Gram-positive, anaerobic bacterium is heavily dependent upon its prolific toxin-producing ability. Many of the ∼16 toxins produced by C. perfringens are encoded by large plasmids that range in size from ∼45 kb to ∼140 kb. These plasmid-encoded toxins are often closely associated with mobile elements. A C. perfringens strain can carry up to three different toxin plasmids, with a single plasmid carrying up to three distinct toxin genes. Molecular Koch's postulate analyses have established the importance of several plasmid-encoded toxins when C. perfringens disease strains cause enteritis or enterotoxemias. Many toxin plasmids are closely related, suggesting a common evolutionary origin. In particular, most toxin plasmids and some antibiotic resistance plasmids of C. perfringens share an ∼35-kb region containing a Tn916-related conjugation locus named tcp (transfer of clostridial plasmids). This tcp locus can mediate highly efficient conjugative transfer of these toxin or resistance plasmids. For example, conjugative transfer of a toxin plasmid from an infecting strain to C. perfringens normal intestinal flora strains may help to amplify and prolong an infection. Therefore, the presence of toxin genes on conjugative plasmids, particularly in association with insertion sequences that may mobilize these toxin genes, likely provides C. perfringens with considerable virulence plasticity and adaptability when it causes diseases originating in the gastrointestinal tract. PMID:23699255

  12. Mammalian target of rapamycin complex 1 (mTORC1) plays a role in Pasteurella multocida toxin (PMT)-induced protein synthesis and proliferation in Swiss 3T3 cells.

    PubMed

    Oubrahim, Hammou; Wong, Allison; Wilson, Brenda A; Chock, P Boon

    2013-01-25

    Pasteurella multocida toxin (PMT) is a potent mitogen known to activate several signaling pathways via deamidation of a conserved glutamine residue in the α subunit of heterotrimeric G-proteins. However, the detailed mechanism behind mitogenic properties of PMT is unknown. Herein, we show that PMT induces protein synthesis, cell migration, and proliferation in serum-starved Swiss 3T3 cells. Concomitantly PMT induces phosphorylation of ribosomal S6 kinase (S6K1) and its substrate, ribosomal S6 protein (rpS6), in quiescent 3T3 cells. The extent of the phosphorylation is time and PMT concentration dependent, and is inhibited by rapamycin and Torin1, the two specific inhibitors of the mammalian target of rapamycin complex 1 (mTORC1). Interestingly, PMT-mediated mTOR signaling activation was observed in MEF WT but not in Gα(q/11) knock-out cells. These observations are consistent with the data indicating that PMT-induced mTORC1 activation proceeds via the deamidation of Gα(q/11), which leads to the activation of PLCβ to generate diacylglycerol and inositol trisphosphate, two known activators of the PKC pathway. Exogenously added diacylglycerol or phorbol 12-myristate 13-acetate, known activators of PKC, leads to rpS6 phosphorylation in a rapamycin-dependent manner. Furthermore, PMT-induced rpS6 phosphorylation is inhibited by PKC inhibitor, Gö6976. Although PMT induces epidermal growth factor receptor activation, it exerts no effect on PMT-induced rpS6 phosphorylation. Together, our findings reveal for the first time that PMT activates mTORC1 through the Gα(q/11)/PLCβ/PKC pathway. The fact that PMT-induced protein synthesis and cell migration is partially inhibited by rapamycin indicates that these processes are in part mediated by the mTORC1 pathway. PMID:23223576

  13. Interactions between Autophagy and Bacterial Toxins: Targets for Therapy?

    PubMed Central

    Mathieu, Jacques

    2015-01-01

    Autophagy is a physiological process involved in defense mechanisms for clearing intracellular bacteria. The autophagic pathway is finely regulated and bacterial toxins interact with this process in a complex manner. Bacterial toxins also interact significantly with many biochemical processes. Evaluations of the effects of bacterial toxins, such as endotoxins, pore-forming toxins and adenylate cyclases, on autophagy could support the development of new strategies for counteracting bacterial pathogenicity. Treatment strategies could focus on drugs that enhance autophagic processes to improve the clearance of intracellular bacteria. However, further in vivo studies are required to decipher the upregulation of autophagy and potential side effects limiting such approaches. The capacity of autophagy activation strategies to improve the outcome of antibiotic treatment should be investigated in the future. PMID:26248079

  14. Lymphocyte receptors for pertussis toxin

    SciTech Connect

    Clark, C.G.; Armstrong, G.D. )

    1990-12-01

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

  15. The assay of diphtheria toxin

    PubMed Central

    Gerwing, Julia; Long, D. A.; Mussett, Marjorie V.

    1957-01-01

    A precise assay of diphtheria toxin is described, based on the linear relationship between the diameter of the skin reaction to, and logarithm of the dose of, toxin. It eliminates the need for preliminary titrations, is economical, provides information about the slope of the log-dose response lines and, therefore, of the validity of the assay, and yields limits of error of potency from the internal evidence of the assay. A study has been made of the effects of avidity, combining power, toxicity and buffering on the assay of diphtheria toxins against the International Standards for both Diphtheria Antitoxin and Schick-Test Toxin. All the toxins assayed against the standard toxin, whatever their other properties might be, gave log-dose response lines of similar slope provided that they were diluted in buffered physiological saline. The assays were therefore valid. These experiments were repeated concurrently in non-immune and in actively immunized guinea-pigs, and comparable figures for potency obtained in both groups. The result was not significantly affected by the avidity or combining power of the toxin. However, non-avid toxins gave low values in Schick units when assayed, by the Römer & Sames technique, in terms of the International Standard for Diphtheria Antitoxin. The problem of the ultimate standard and the implications of these findings are discussed. PMID:13511133

  16. TOXINS FROM CYANOBACTERIA IN WATER

    EPA Science Inventory

    This project is part of a larger U. S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) effort, which includes the Office of Water, to investigate algal toxins in surface water supplies and drinking water. Toxins produced by cyanobacteria (blue-green algae) are among the most potent known ...

  17. Botulinum toxin: Bioweapon & magic drug

    PubMed Central

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

    2010-01-01

    Botulinum neurotoxins, causative agents of botulism in humans, are produced by Clostridium botulinum, an anaerobic spore-former Gram positive bacillus. Botulinum neurotoxin poses a major bioweapon threat because of its extreme potency and lethality; its ease of production, transport, and misuse; and the need for prolonged intensive care among affected persons. A single gram of crystalline toxin, evenly dispersed and inhaled, can kill more than one million people. The basis of the phenomenal potency of botulinum toxin is enzymatic; the toxin is a zinc proteinase that cleaves neuronal vesicle associated proteins responsible for acetylcholine release into the neuromuscular junction. As a military or terrorist weapon, botulinum toxin could be disseminated via aerosol or by contamination of water or food supplies, causing widespread casualties. A fascinating aspect of botulinum toxin research in recent years has been development of the most potent toxin into a molecule of significant therapeutic utility. It is the first biological toxin which is licensed for treatment of human diseases. In the late 1980s, Canada approved use of the toxin to treat strabismus, in 2001 in the removal of facial wrinkles and in 2002, the FDA in the United States followed suit. The present review focuses on both warfare potential and medical uses of botulinum neurotoxin. PMID:21149997

  18. Differences in the toxin profiles of Alexandrium ostenfeldii (Dinophyceae) strains isolated from different geographic origins: Evidence of paralytic toxin, spirolide, and gymnodimine.

    PubMed

    Salgado, Pablo; Riobó, Pilar; Rodríguez, Francisco; Franco, José M; Bravo, Isabel

    2015-09-01

    Among toxin-producing dinoflagellates of the genus Alexandrium, Alexandrium ostenfeldii is the only species able to produce paralytic shellfish poisoning (PSP) toxins, spirolides (SPXs) and gymnodimines (GYMs). In this study we characterized and compared three A. ostenfeldii strains isolated from the Baltic, Mediterranean, and southern Chile Seas with respect to their toxin profiles, morphology, and phylogeny. Toxin analyses by HPLC-FD and LC-HRMS revealed differences in the toxin profiles of the three strains. The PSP toxin profiles of the southern Chile and Baltic strains were largely the same and included gonyautoxin (GTX)-3, GTX-2, and saxitoxin (STX), although the total PSP toxin content of the Chilean strain (105.83 ± 72.15 pg cell(-1)) was much higher than that of the Baltic strain (4.04 ± 1.93 pg cell(-1)). However, the Baltic strain was the only strain that expressed detectable amounts of analogues of GYM-A and GYM-B/-C (48.27 ± 26.12 pg GYM-A equivalents cell(-1)). The only toxin expressed by the Mediterranean strain was 13-desmethyl SPX-C (13dMeC; 2.85 ± 4.76 pg cell(-1)). Phylogenetic analysis based on the LSU rRNA showed that the studied strains belonged to distinct molecular clades. The toxin profiles determined in this study provide further evidence of the taxonomic complexity of this species. PMID:26093028

  19. PROGENITORS OF RECOMBINING SUPERNOVA REMNANTS

    SciTech Connect

    Moriya, Takashi J.

    2012-05-01

    Usual supernova remnants have either ionizing plasma or plasma in collisional ionization equilibrium, i.e., the ionization temperature is lower than or equal to the electron temperature. However, the existence of recombining supernova remnants, i.e., supernova remnants with ionization temperature higher than the electron temperature, has been recently confirmed. One suggested way to have recombining plasma in a supernova remnant is to have a dense circumstellar medium at the time of the supernova explosion. If the circumstellar medium is dense enough, collisional ionization equilibrium can be established in the early stage of the evolution of the supernova remnant and subsequent adiabatic cooling, which occurs after the shock wave gets out of the dense circumstellar medium, makes the electron temperature lower than the ionization temperature. We study the circumstellar medium around several supernova progenitors and show which supernova progenitors can have a circumstellar medium dense enough to establish collisional ionization equilibrium soon after the explosion. We find that the circumstellar medium around red supergiants (especially massive ones) and the circumstellar medium dense enough to make Type IIn supernovae can establish collisional ionization equilibrium soon after the explosion and can evolve to become recombining supernova remnants. Wolf-Rayet stars and white dwarfs have the possibility to be recombining supernova remnants but the fraction is expected to be very small. As the occurrence rate of the explosions of red supergiants is much higher than that of Type IIn supernovae, the major progenitors of recombining supernova remnants are likely to be red supergiants.

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-01-01

    Tarantula toxins that bind to voltage-sensing domains of voltage-activated ion channels are thought to partition into the membrane and bind to the channel within the bilayer. While no structures of a voltage-sensor toxin bound to a channel have been solved, a structural homolog, psalmotoxin (PcTx1), was recently crystalized in complex with the extracellular domain of an acid sensing ion channel (ASIC). In the present study we use spectroscopic, biophysical and computational approaches to compare membrane interaction properties and channel binding surfaces of PcTx1 with the voltage-sensor toxin guangxitoxin (GxTx-1E). Our results show that both types of tarantula toxins interact with membranes, but that voltage-sensor toxins partition deeper into the bilayer. In addition, our results suggest that tarantula toxins have evolved a similar concave surface for clamping onto α-helices that is effective in aqueous or lipidic physical environments. PMID:25948544

  1. Computational approaches for designing potent and selective analogs of peptide toxins as novel therapeutics

    PubMed Central

    Kuyucak, Serdar; Norton, Raymond S

    2015-01-01

    Peptide toxins provide valuable therapeutic leads for many diseases. As they bind to their targets with high affinity, potency is usually ensured. However, toxins also bind to off-target receptors, causing potential side effects. Thus, a major challenge in generating drugs from peptide toxins is ensuring their specificity for their intended targets. Computational methods can play an important role in solving such design problems through construction of accurate models of receptor–toxin complexes and calculation of binding free energies. Here we review the computational methods used for this purpose and their application to toxins targeting ion channels. We describe ShK and HsTX1 toxins, high-affinity blockers of the voltage-gated potassium channel Kv1.3, which could be developed as therapeutic agents for autoimmune diseases. PMID:25406005

  2. Evolution of Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli O157: eight major lineages of human and cattle origin strain signature genotypes

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Cattle are a major reservoir for Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli O157 (STEC O157) and harbor genetic subtypes that do not all associate with human disease. STEC O157 evolved from an E. coli O55:H7 progenitor, however, depauperate nucleotide polymorphism discovery from cattle and human origin...

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

    SciTech Connect

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

    1990-07-03

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

  4. Perfringolysin O: The Underrated Clostridium perfringens Toxin?

    PubMed Central

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

    2015-01-01

    The anaerobic bacterium Clostridium perfringens expresses multiple toxins that promote disease development in both humans and animals. One such toxin is perfringolysin O (PFO, classically referred to as θ toxin), a pore-forming cholesterol-dependent cytolysin (CDC). PFO is secreted as a water-soluble monomer that recognizes and binds membranes via cholesterol. Membrane-bound monomers undergo structural changes that culminate in the formation of an oligomerized prepore complex on the membrane surface. The prepore then undergoes conversion into the bilayer-spanning pore measuring approximately 250–300 Å in diameter. PFO is expressed in nearly all identified C. perfringens strains and harbors interesting traits that suggest a potential undefined role for PFO in disease development. Research has demonstrated a role for PFO in gas gangrene progression and bovine necrohemorrhagic enteritis, but there is limited data available to determine if PFO also functions in additional disease presentations caused by C. perfringens. This review summarizes the known structural and functional characteristics of PFO, while highlighting recent insights into the potential contributions of PFO to disease pathogenesis. PMID:26008232

  5. Food toxin detection with atomic force microscope

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

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

  6. Detecting and discriminating among Shiga toxins

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The virulence associated with Shiga toxin producing Escherichia coli (STEC) infections is from the Shiga toxins produced by the E. coli strain. Although Shiga toxins are associated with E. coli, the expression of the toxins is actually controlled by a temperate lambdoid phage that infects the host. ...

  7. Botulinum toxin for pain.

    PubMed

    Casale, Roberto; Tugnoli, Valeria

    2008-01-01

    Botulinum toxin (BTX) injection is being increasingly used 'off label' in the management of chronic pain. Data support the hypothesis of a direct analgesic effect of BTX, different to that exerted on muscle. Although the pain-reducing effect of BTX is mainly due to its ability to block acetylcholine release at the synapse, other effects on the nervous system are also thought to be involved. BTX affects cholinergic transmission in both the somatic and the autonomic nervous systems. Proposed mechanisms of action of BTX for pain relief of trigger points, muscular spasms, fibromyalgia and myofascial pain include direct action on muscle and indirect effects via action at the neuromuscular junction. Invitro and invivo data have shown that BTX has specific antinociceptive activity relating to its effects on inflammation, axonal transport, ganglion inhibition, and spinal and suprasegmental level inhibition. Our review of the mechanisms of action, efficacy, administration techniques and therapeutic dosage of BTX for the management of chronic pain in a variety of conditions shows that although muscular tone and movement disorders remain the most important therapeutic applications for BTX, research suggests that BTX can also provide benefits related to effects on cholinergic control of the vascular system, autonomic function, and cholinergic control of nociceptive and antinociceptive systems. Furthermore, it appears that BTX may influence the peripheral and central nervous systems. The therapeutic potential of BTX depends mainly on the ability to deliver the toxin to the target structures, cholinergic or otherwise. Evidence suggests that BTX can be administered at standard dosages in pain disorders, where the objective is alteration of muscle tone. For conditions requiring an analgesic effect, the optimal therapeutic dosage of BTX remains to be defined. PMID:18095750

  8. Binding of nicotinamide–adenine dinucleotides to diphtheria toxin

    PubMed Central

    Montanaro, L.; Sperti, Simonetta

    1967-01-01

    1. Changes in protein fluorescence have been utilized in determining the stoicheiometry and dissociation constants of the complexes of diphtheria toxin with NADH2, NAD, NADPH2 and NADP. 2. The binding stoicheiometry is 2moles of NADH2 and 1mole of NADPH2/mole of diphtheria toxin. The binding sites for NADH2 appear to be equivalent and independent. 3. The toxin shows a higher affinity for the reduced than for the oxidized forms of the nucleotides. 4. Dissociation constants at 0·01I, pH7 and 25° are 0·7×10−6m for NADH2 and 0·45×10−6m for NADPH2. Dissociation constants increase with increasing ionic strength, indicating that the binding is mainly electrostatic. 5. Bound NADH2 and NADPH2 may be activated to fluoresce by the transfer of energy from the excited aromatic amino acids of the toxin. Activation and emission spectra of bound and free nucleotides are compared. 6. Since NAD and NADH2 are cofactors specifically required for the inhibition of protein synthesis by diphtheria toxin, the possible role of toxin–nucleotide complexes is discussed in this regard. PMID:4384596

  9. Shiga Toxin Producing Escherichia coli.

    PubMed

    Bryan, Allen; Youngster, Ilan; McAdam, Alexander J

    2015-06-01

    Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli (STEC) is among the common causes of foodborne gastroenteritis. STEC is defined by the production of specific toxins, but within this pathotype there is a diverse group of organisms. This diversity has important consequences for understanding the pathogenesis of the organism, as well as for selecting the optimum strategy for diagnostic testing in the clinical laboratory. This review includes discussions of the mechanisms of pathogenesis, the range of manifestations of infection, and the several different methods of laboratory detection of Shiga toxin-producing E coli. PMID:26004641

  10. Diphtheria toxin-based targeted toxin therapy for brain tumors.

    PubMed

    Li, Yan Michael; Vallera, Daniel A; Hall, Walter A

    2013-09-01

    Targeted toxins (TT) are molecules that bind cell surface antigens or receptors such as the transferrin or interleukin-13 receptor that are overexpressed in cancer. After internalization, the toxin component kills the cell. These recombinant proteins consist of an antibody or carrier ligand coupled to a modified plant or bacterial toxin such as diphtheria toxin (DT). These fusion proteins are very effective against brain cancer cells that are resistant to radiation therapy and chemotherapy. TT have shown an acceptable profile for toxicity and safety in animal studies and early clinical trials have demonstrated a therapeutic response. This review summarizes the characteristics of DT-based TT, the animal studies in malignant brain tumors and early clinical trial results. Obstacles to the successful treatment of brain tumors include poor penetration into tumor, the immune response to DT and cancer heterogeneity. PMID:23695514

  11. [Shiga toxin and tetanus toxin as a potential biologic weapon].

    PubMed

    Toczyska, Izabela; Płusa, Tadeusz

    2015-09-01

    Toxins produced by the bacteria are of particular interest as potential cargo combat possible for use in a terrorist attack or war. Shiga toxin is usually produced by shiga toxigenic strains of Escherichia coli (STEC - shigatoxigenic Escherichia coli). To infection occurs mostly after eating contaminated beef. Clinical syndromes associated with Shiga toxin diarrhea, hemorrhagic colitis, hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS - hemolytic uremic syndrome) or thrombotic thrombocytopenic purpura. Treatment is symptomatic. In HUS, in which mortality during an epidemic reaches 20%, extending the kidney injury dialysis may be necessary. Exposure to tetanus toxin produced by Clostridium tetani, resulting in the most generalized tetanus, characterized by increased muscle tension and painful contractions of individual muscle groups. In the treatment beyond symptomatic behavior (among others spasticity medications, anticonvulsants, muscle relaxants) is used tetanus antitoxin and antibiotics (metronidazole choice). A common complication is acute respiratory failure - then it is necessary to implement mechanical ventilation. PMID:26449578

  12. Trophic accumulation of PSP toxins in zooplankton during Alexandrium fundyense blooms in Casco Bay, Gulf of Maine, April June 1998. I. Toxin levels in A. fundyense and zooplankton size fractions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Doucette, Gregory J.; Turner, Jefferson T.; Powell, Christine L.; Keafer, Bruce A.; Anderson, Donald M.

    2005-09-01

    concentrations in the 20-64 μm, A. fundyense-containing size fraction implied fluctuations in the algal toxin cell quota, which ranged from ca. 10 to 2000 fmol STX equiv. cell -1. Some of this variability may reflect the changing presence in this size fraction of grazers (e.g., tintinnids) capable of toxin accumulation, causing an upward bias in A. fundyense toxin cell quota estimates. Overall, the extent of PSP toxin transfer into zooplankton will be determined by a complex interaction among several factors, including A. fundyense and grazer abundance, algal toxin cell quota, and zooplankton community composition. An ability to predict zooplankton toxin accumulation will require further investigation of the relationships between these and other factors, aimed specifically at modeling the process of toxin trophic transfer to grazers and ultimately to their predators.

  13. Epsilon toxin: a fascinating pore-forming toxin.

    PubMed

    Popoff, Michel R

    2011-12-01

    Epsilon toxin (ETX) is produced by strains of Clostridium perfringens classified as type B or type D. ETX belongs to the heptameric β-pore-forming toxins including aerolysin and Clostridium septicum alpha toxin, which are characterized by the formation of a pore through the plasma membrane of eukaryotic cells consisting in a β-barrel of 14 amphipatic β strands. By contrast to aerolysin and C. septicum alpha toxin, ETX is a much more potent toxin and is responsible for enterotoxemia in animals, mainly sheep. ETX induces perivascular edema in various tissues and accumulates in particular in the kidneys and brain, where it causes edema and necrotic lesions. ETX is able to pass through the blood-brain barrier and stimulate the release of glutamate, which accounts for the symptoms of nervous excitation observed in animal enterotoxemia. At the cellular level, ETX causes rapid swelling followed by cell death involving necrosis. The precise mode of action of ETX remains to be determined. ETX is a powerful toxin, however, it also represents a unique tool with which to vehicle drugs into the central nervous system or target glutamatergic neurons. PMID:21535407

  14. Bacterial Community Affects Toxin Production by Gymnodinium catenatum

    PubMed Central

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

    2014-01-01

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

  15. Strategies to improve the insecticidal activity of Cry toxins from Bacillus thuringiensis.

    PubMed Central

    Pardo-López, L.; Muñoz-Garay, C.; Porta, H.; Rodríguez-Almazán, C.; Soberón, M.; Bravo, A.

    2009-01-01

    Bacillus thuringiensis Cry toxins have been widely used in the control of insect pests either as spray products or expressed in transgenic crops. These proteins are pore forming toxins with a complex mechanism of action that involves the sequential interaction with several toxin-receptors. Cry toxins are specific against susceptible larvae and although they are often highly effective, some insect pests are not affected by them or show low susceptibility. In addition, the development of resistance threatens their effectiveness, so strategies to cope with all these problems are necessary. In this review we will discuss and compare the different strategies that have been used to improve insecticidal activity of Cry toxins. The activity of Cry toxins can be enhanced by using additional proteins in the bioassay like serine protease inhibitors, chitinases, Cyt toxins, or a fragment of cadherin receptor containing a toxin-binding site. On the other hand, different modifications performed in the toxin gene such as site directed mutagenesis, introduction of cleavage sites in specific regions of the protein, and deletion of small fragments from the amino-terminal region lead to improved toxicity or overcome resistance, representing interesting alternatives for insect pest control. PMID:18773932

  16. CD44 Promotes Intoxication by the Clostridial Iota-Family Toxins

    PubMed Central

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

    2012-01-01

    Various pathogenic clostridia produce binary protein toxins associated with enteric diseases of humans and animals. Separate binding/translocation (B) components bind to a protein receptor on the cell surface, assemble with enzymatic (A) component(s), and mediate endocytosis of the toxin complex. Ultimately there is translocation of A component(s) from acidified endosomes into the cytosol, leading to destruction of the actin cytoskeleton. Our results revealed that CD44, a multifunctional surface protein of mammalian cells, facilitates intoxication by the iota family of clostridial binary toxins. Specific antibody against CD44 inhibited cytotoxicity of the prototypical Clostridium perfringens iota toxin. Versus CD44+ melanoma cells, those lacking CD44 bound less toxin and were dose-dependently resistant to C. perfringens iota, as well as Clostridium difficile and Clostridium spiroforme iota-like, toxins. Purified CD44 specifically interacted in vitro with iota and iota-like, but not related Clostridium botulinum C2, toxins. Furthermore, CD44 knockout mice were resistant to iota toxin lethality. Collective data reveal an important role for CD44 during intoxication by a family of clostridial binary toxins. PMID:23236484

  17. Role of cAMP- and IKK-2-Dependent Signaling Pathways in Functional Stimulation of Mesenchymal Progenitor Cells with Alkaloid Songorine.

    PubMed

    Zyuz'kov, G N; Zhdanov, V V; Udut, E V; Miroshnichenko, L A; Chaikovskii, A V; Simanina, E V; Polyakova, T Yu; Minakova, M Yu; Udut, V V; Tolstikova, T G; Shul'ts, E E; Stavrova, L A; Burmina, Ya V; Suslov, N I; Dygai, A M

    2015-09-01

    The role of cAMP- and IKK-2-dependent pathways in stimulation of the growth capacity of mesenchymal progenitor cells with alkaloid songorine was studied in vitro. Inhibitors of adenylate cyclase and IKK-2 were shown to abolish the increase in proliferative activity of progenitor cells. Moreover, blockade of the inhibitory kinase complex was accompanied by a decrease in the intensity of progenitor cell differentiation. PMID:26472093

  18. [Today's threat of ricin toxin].

    PubMed

    From, Sławomir; Płusa, Tadeusz

    2015-09-01

    Since the late 70s of the last century there were more than 700 incidents related to the use of the ricin toxin. For this reason, CDC (Center of Disease Control and Prevention) recognized toxin as a biological weapon category B. The lethal dose of ricin toxin after parenteral administration is 0.0001 mg/kg and after oral administration 0.2 mg. The first symptoms of poisoning occur within a few hours after application of toxin as a nausea, vomiting and abdominal pain. In the final stage there are observed: cardiac arrhythmia, collapse and symptoms suggestive of involvement of the central nervous system. Stage immediately preceding death is a state of coma. The ricin toxin is still the substance against which action has no optimal antidote. Developed a vaccine called RiVax is waiting for its registration. It should be pointed out that the availability of a ricin toxin makes it possible to use it for real bioterrorists. PMID:26449579

  19. [Toxins of Clostridium perfringens].

    PubMed

    Morris, W E; Fernández-Miyakawa, M E

    2009-01-01

    Clostridium perfringens is an anaerobic gram-positive spore-forming bacillus. It is one of the pathogens with larger distribution in the environment; it can be isolated from soil and water samples, which also belongs to the intestinal flora of animals and humans. However, on some occasions it can act as an opportunistic pathogen, causing diseases such as gas gangrene, enterotoxemia in sheep and goats and lamb dysentery, among others. In human beings, it is associated to diseases such as food poisoning, necrotic enterocolitis of the infant and necrotic enteritis or pigbel in Papua-New Guinea tribes. The renewed interest existing nowadays in the study of C. perfringens as a veterinarian and human pathogen, together with the advance of molecular biology, had enabled science to have deeper knowledge of the biology and pathology of these bacteria. In this review, we discuss and update the principal aspects of C. perfringens intestinal pathology, in terms of the toxins with major medical relevance at present. PMID:20085190

  20. Induction of apoptosis by Shiga toxins

    PubMed Central

    Tesh, Vernon L

    2010-01-01

    Shiga toxins comprise a family of structurally and functionally related protein toxins expressed by Shigella dysenteriae serotype 1 and multiple serotypes of Escherichia coli. While the capacity of Shiga toxins to inhibit protein synthesis by catalytic inactivation of eukaryotic ribosomes has been well described, it is also apparent that Shiga toxins trigger apoptosis in many cell types. This review presents evidence that Shiga toxins induce apoptosis of epithelial, endothelial, leukocytic, lymphoid and neuronal cells. Apoptotic signaling pathways activated by the toxins are reviewed with an emphasis on signaling mechanisms that are shared among different cell types. Data suggesting that Shiga toxins induce apoptosis through the endoplasmic reticulum stress response and clinical evidence demonstrating apoptosis in humans infected with Shiga toxin-producing bacteria are briefly discussed. The potential for use of Shiga toxins to induce apoptosis in cancer cells is briefly reviewed. PMID:20210553

  1. Antibody-based biological toxin detection

    SciTech Connect

    Menking, D.E.; Goode, M.T.

    1995-12-01

    Fiber optic evanescent fluorosensors are under investigation in our laboratory for the study of drug-receptor interactions for detection of threat agents and antibody-antigen interactions for detection of biological toxins. In a direct competition assay, antibodies against Cholera toxin, Staphylococcus Enterotoxin B or ricin were noncovalently immobilized on quartz fibers and probed with fluorescein isothiocyanate (FITC) - labeled toxins. In the indirect competition assay, Cholera toxin or Botulinum toxoid A was immobilized onto the fiber, followed by incubation in an antiserum or partially purified anti-toxin IgG. These were then probed with FITC-anti-IgG antibodies. Unlabeled toxins competed with labeled toxins or anti-toxin IgG in a dose dependent manner and the detection of the toxins was in the nanomolar range.

  2. Overview of Aerosolized Florida Red Tide Toxins: Exposures and Effects

    PubMed Central

    Fleming, Lora E.; Backer, Lorraine C.; Baden, Daniel G.

    2005-01-01

    Florida red tide is caused by Karenia brevis, a dinoflagellate that periodically blooms, releasing its potent neurotoxin, brevetoxin, into the surrounding waters and air along the coast of the Gulf of Mexico. Exposure to Florida red tide toxins has been associated with adverse human health effects and massive fish and marine mammal deaths. The articles in this mini-monograph describe the ongoing interdisciplinary and interagency research program that characterizes the exposures and health effects of aerosolized Florida red tide toxins (brevetoxins). The interdisciplinary research program uses animal models and laboratory studies to develop hypotheses and apply these findings to in situ human exposures. Our ultimate goal is to develop appropriate prevention measures and medical interventions to mitigate or prevent adverse health effects from exposure to complex mixtures of aerosolized red tide toxins. PMID:15866773

  3. Pro and antiinflammatory properties of toxins from animal venoms.

    PubMed

    Farsky, Sandra H P; Antunes, Edson; Mello, Suzana B V

    2005-06-01

    Accidents evoked by venomous animals are common in tropical regions. In Brazil, envenomation evoked by snakes, spiders and scorpions are an important public health problem. Their venoms are composed of a great number of toxins, which are capable of acting on tissue and plasma components with consequent toxic and pharmacological effects. On the other hand, the diversity of venom composition makes them important source of toxins that can be employed as scientific tools. Here we describe the mechanisms of anti and pro-inflammatory properties of toxins of Bothrops and Crotalus genus snakes and Loxosceles and Phoneutria genus spider venoms. The emphasis was to summarise, both in vivo and in vitro, studies that focused on the action of phospholipases, metalloproteinases and sphingomyelinase D on vascular and cellular aspects of the process as well as the complex network of chemical mediators involved. PMID:16101549

  4. Binding Affinity of Glycoconjugates to BACILLUS Spores and Toxins

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rasol, Aveen; Eassa, Souzan; Tarasenko, Olga

    2010-04-01

    Early recognition of Bacillus cereus group species is important since they can cause food-borne illnesses and deadly diseases in humans. Glycoconjugates (GCs) are carbohydrates covalently linked to non-sugar moieties including lipids, proteins or other entities. GCs are involved in recognition and signaling processes intrinsic to biochemical functions in cells. They also stimulate cell-cell adhesion and subsequent recognition and activation of receptors. We have demonstrated that GCs are involved in Bacillus cereus spore recognition. In the present study, we have investigated whether GCs possess the ability to bind and recognize B. cereus spores and Bacillus anthracis recombinant single toxins (sTX) and complex toxins (cTX). The affinity of GCs to spores + sTX and spores + cTX toxins was studied in the binding essay. Our results demonstrated that GC9 and GC10 were able to selectively bind to B. cereus spores and B. anthracis toxins. Different binding affinities for GCs were found toward Bacillus cereus spores + sTX and spores + cTX. Dilution of GCs does not impede the recognition and binding. Developed method provides a tool for simultaneous recognition and targeting of spores, bacteria toxins, and/or other entities.

  5. The Regulatory Networks That Control Clostridium difficile Toxin Synthesis.

    PubMed

    Martin-Verstraete, Isabelle; Peltier, Johann; Dupuy, Bruno

    2016-01-01

    The pathogenic clostridia cause many human and animal diseases, which typically arise as a consequence of the production of potent exotoxins. Among the enterotoxic clostridia, Clostridium difficile is the main causative agent of nosocomial intestinal infections in adults with a compromised gut microbiota caused by antibiotic treatment. The symptoms of C. difficile infection are essentially caused by the production of two exotoxins: TcdA and TcdB. Moreover, for severe forms of disease, the spectrum of diseases caused by C. difficile has also been correlated to the levels of toxins that are produced during host infection. This observation strengthened the idea that the regulation of toxin synthesis is an important part of C. difficile pathogenesis. This review summarizes our current knowledge about the regulators and sigma factors that have been reported to control toxin gene expression in response to several environmental signals and stresses, including the availability of certain carbon sources and amino acids, or to signaling molecules, such as the autoinducing peptides of quorum sensing systems. The overlapping regulation of key metabolic pathways and toxin synthesis strongly suggests that toxin production is a complex response that is triggered by bacteria in response to particular states of nutrient availability during infection. PMID:27187475

  6. The Regulatory Networks That Control Clostridium difficile Toxin Synthesis

    PubMed Central

    Martin-Verstraete, Isabelle; Peltier, Johann; Dupuy, Bruno

    2016-01-01

    The pathogenic clostridia cause many human and animal diseases, which typically arise as a consequence of the production of potent exotoxins. Among the enterotoxic clostridia, Clostridium difficile is the main causative agent of nosocomial intestinal infections in adults with a compromised gut microbiota caused by antibiotic treatment. The symptoms of C. difficile infection are essentially caused by the production of two exotoxins: TcdA and TcdB. Moreover, for severe forms of disease, the spectrum of diseases caused by C. difficile has also been correlated to the levels of toxins that are produced during host infection. This observation strengthened the idea that the regulation of toxin synthesis is an important part of C. difficile pathogenesis. This review summarizes our current knowledge about the regulators and sigma factors that have been reported to control toxin gene expression in response to several environmental signals and stresses, including the availability of certain carbon sources and amino acids, or to signaling molecules, such as the autoinducing peptides of quorum sensing systems. The overlapping regulation of key metabolic pathways and toxin synthesis strongly suggests that toxin production is a complex response that is triggered by bacteria in response to particular states of nutrient availability during infection. PMID:27187475

  7. Fusarial toxins: secondary metabolites of Fusarium fungi.

    PubMed

    Nesic, Ksenija; Ivanovic, Snezana; Nesic, Vladimir

    2014-01-01

    Exposure to mycotoxins occurs worldwide, even though there are geographic and climatic differences in the amounts produced and occurrence of these substances.Mycotoxins are secondary chemical metabolites of different fungi. They are natural contaminants of cereals, so their presence is often inevitable. Among many genera that produce mycotoxins, Fusarium fungi are the most widespread in cereal-growing areas of the planet. Fusarium fungi produce a diversity of mycotoxin types, whose distributions are also diverse. What is produced and where it is produced is influenced primarily by environmental conditions, and crop production and storage methods. The amount of toxin produced depends on physical (viz., moisture, relative humidity, temperature, and mechanical damage), chemical (viz., carbon dioxide,oxygen, composition of substrate, insecticides and fungicides), and biological factors (viz., plant variety, stress, insects, spore load, etc.). Moisture and temperature have a major influence on mold growth rate and mycotoxin production.Among the most toxic and prevalent fusaria) toxins are the following: zearalenone,fumonisins, moniliformin and trichothecenes (T-2/HT-2 toxin, deoxynivalenol,diacetoxyscirpenol, nivalenol). Zearalenone (ZEA; ZON, F-2 toxin) isaphy to estrogenic compound, primarily a field contaminant, which exhibits estrogenic activity and has been implicated in numerous mycotoxicoses of farm animals,especially pigs. Recently, evidence suggests that ZEA has potential to stimulate the growth of human breast cancer cells. Fumonisins are also cancer-promoting metabolites,of which Fumonisin 8 I (FBI) is the most important. Moniliformin (MON) isalso highly toxic to both animals and humans. Trichothecenes are classified as gastrointestinal toxins, dermatotoxins, immunotoxins, hematotoxins, and gene toxins.T-2 and HT-2 toxin, and diacetoxyscirpenol (DAS, anguidine) are the most toxic mycotoxins among the trichothecene group. Deoxynivalenol (DON, vomitoxin) and

  8. Hs3st3-modified heparan sulfate controls KIT+ progenitor expansion by regulating 3-O-sulfotransferases

    PubMed Central

    Patel, Vaishali N.; Lombaert, Isabelle M. A.; Cowherd, Samuel N.; Shworak, Nicholas W.; Xu, Yongmei; Liu, Jian; Hoffman, Matthew P.

    2014-01-01

    Summary The exquisite control of growth factor function by heparan sulfate (HS) is dictated by the tremendous structural heterogeneity of sulfated modifications. It is not known how specific HS structures control growth factor-dependent progenitor expansion during organogenesis. We isolated KIT+ progenitors from fetal salivary glands during a stage of rapid progenitor expansion and profiled HS biosynthetic enzyme expression. Enzymes generating a specific type of 3-O-sulfated-HS (3-O-HS) are enriched, and FGF10/FGFR2b signaling directly regulates their expression. Bioengineered 3-O-HS binds FGFR2b and stabilizes FGF10/FGFR2b complexes in a receptor- and growth factor-specific manner. Rapid autocrine feedback increases 3-O-HS, KIT and progenitor expansion. Knockdown of multiple Hs3st isoforms limits fetal progenitor expansion, but is rescued with bioengineered 3-O-HS, which also increases adult progenitor expansion. Rapidly altering a specific 3-O-sulfated epitope provides a cellular mechanism to modulate the response to FGFR2b signaling and control progenitor expansion. 3-O-HS may expand KIT+ progenitors in vitro for regenerative therapy. PMID:24960693

  9. A yeast killer toxin screen provides insights into A/B toxin entry, trafficking and killing mechanisms

    PubMed Central

    Carroll, Susheela Y.; Stirling, Peter C.; Stimpson, Helen E. M.; Gießelmann, Esther; Schmitt, Manfred J.; Drubin, David G.

    2009-01-01

    Summary Like Ricin, Shiga, and Cholera toxins, yeast K28 is an A/B toxin that depends on endocytosis and retrograde trafficking for toxicity. Knowledge of the specific proteins, lipids, and mechanisms required for trafficking and killing by these toxins remains incomplete. Since K28 is a model for clinically relevant toxins, we screened over 5000 yeast mutants, identifying 365 that affect K28 sensitivity. Hypersensitive mutants revealed cytoprotective pathways, including stress-activated signaling and protein degradation. Resistant mutants clustered to endocytic, lipid organization and cell wall biogenesis pathways. Furthermore, GPI anchors and transcriptional regulation are important for K28-cell binding. Strikingly, the AP2 complex, which in metazoans links endocytic cargo to the clathrin coat, but had no assigned function in yeast, was critical for K28 toxicity. Yeast AP2 localizes to endocytic sites and has a cargo-specific function in K28 uptake. This comprehensive genetic analysis identified conserved processes important for A/B toxin trafficking and killing. PMID:19853568

  10. Extracellular matrix-modulated Heartless signaling in Drosophila blood progenitors regulates their differentiation via a Ras/ETS/FOG pathway and target of rapamycin function.

    PubMed

    Dragojlovic-Munther, Michelle; Martinez-Agosto, Julian A

    2013-12-15

    Maintenance of hematopoietic progenitors ensures a continuous supply of blood cells during the lifespan of an organism. Thus, understanding the molecular basis for progenitor maintenance is a continued focus of investigation. A large pool of undifferentiated blood progenitors are maintained in the Drosophila hematopoietic organ, the larval lymph gland, by a complex network of signaling pathways that are mediated by niche-, progenitor-, or differentiated hemocyte-derived signals. In this study we examined the function of the Drosophila fibroblast growth factor receptor (FGFR), Heartless, a critical regulator of early lymph gland progenitor specification in the late embryo, during larval lymph gland hematopoiesis. Activation of Heartless signaling in hemocyte progenitors by its two ligands, Pyramus and Thisbe, is both required and sufficient to induce progenitor differentiation and formation of the plasmatocyte-rich lymph gland cortical zone. We identify two transcriptional regulators that function downstream of Heartless signaling in lymph gland progenitors, the ETS protein, Pointed, and the Friend-of-GATA (FOG) protein, U-shaped, which are required for this Heartless-induced differentiation response. Furthermore, cross-talk of Heartless and target of rapamycin signaling in hemocyte progenitors is required for lamellocyte differentiation downstream of Thisbe-mediated Heartless activation. Finally, we identify the Drosophila heparan sulfate proteoglycan, Trol, as a critical negative regulator of Heartless ligand signaling in the lymph gland, demonstrating that sequestration of differentiation signals by the extracellular matrix is a unique mechanism employed in blood progenitor maintenance that is of potential relevance to many other stem cell niches. PMID:23603494

  11. Extracellular matrix-modulated Heartless signaling in Drosophila blood progenitors regulates their differentiation via a Ras/ETS/FOG pathway and target of rapamycin function

    PubMed Central

    Dragojlovic-Munther, Michelle; Martinez-Agosto, Julian A

    2014-01-01

    Maintenance of hematopoietic progenitors ensures a continuous supply of blood cells during the lifespan of an organism. Thus, understanding the molecular basis for progenitor maintenance is a continued focus of investigation. A large pool of undifferentiated blood progenitors are maintained in the Drosophila hematopoietic organ, the larval lymph gland, by a complex network of signaling pathways that are mediated by niche-, progenitor-, or differentiated hemocyte-derived signals. In this study we examined the function of the Drosophila fibroblast growth factor receptor (FGFR), Heartless, a critical regulator of early lymph gland progenitor specification in the late embryo, during larval lymph gland hematopoiesis. Activation of Heartless signaling in hemocyte progenitors by its two ligands, Pyramus and Thisbe, is both required and sufficient to induce progenitor differentiation and formation of the plasmatocyte-rich lymph gland cortical zone. We identify two transcriptional regulators that function downstream of Heartless signaling in lymph gland progenitors, the ETS protein, Pointed, and the Friend-of-GATA (FOG) protein, U-shaped, which are required for this Heartless-induced differentiation response. Furthermore, cross-talk of Heartless and target of rapamycin signaling in hemocyte progenitors is required for lamellocyte differentiation downstream of Thisbe-mediated Heartless activation. Finally, we identify the Drosophila heparan sulfate proteoglycan, Trol, as a critical negative regulator of Heartless ligand signaling in the lymph gland, demonstrating that sequestration of differentiation signals by the extracellular matrix is a unique mechanism employed in blood progenitor maintenance that is of potential relevance to many other stem cell niches. PMID:23603494

  12. Myelination in vitro of rodent dorsal root ganglia by glial progenitor cells.

    PubMed

    Zajicek, J; Compston, A

    1994-12-01

    Oligodendrocytes synthesize myelin in the mammalian central nervous system; they develop from glial progenitors which, at least in vitro, are bipotential and also differentiate into astrocytes. Maturation of these O-2A progenitors is known to be influenced by growth factors and by extracellular matrix molecules. We investigated the effect of neurons on glial development by co-culturing highly purified rodent embryonic dorsal root ganglia with neonatal O-2A progenitors. Neurons produce signals, including platelet-derived growth factor BB and basic fibroblast growth factor, which stimulate progenitor cells to synthesize DNA; axonal contact is associated with down-regulation in the expression of complex ganglioside surface molecules on O-2A progenitors; with maturation, many of these cells develop into oligodendrocytes allowing the normal process of myelination to take place, but neurons also promote the differentiation of type 2 astrocytes. This orchestration of proliferation and differentiation in O-2A progenitor cells favours the development of glial-neuronal interactions needed for saltatory conduction of the nerve impulse. PMID:7820570

  13. Canonical Wnt signaling transiently stimulates proliferation and enhances neurogenesis in neonatal neural progenitor cultures

    SciTech Connect

    Hirsch, Cordula; Campano, Louise M.; Woehrle, Simon; Hecht, Andreas . E-mail: andreas.hecht@mol-med.uni-freiburg.de

    2007-02-01

    Canonical Wnt signaling triggers the formation of heterodimeric transcription factor complexes consisting of {beta}-catenin and T cell factors, and thereby controls the execution of specific genetic programs. During the expansion and neurogenic phases of embryonic neural development canonical Wnt signaling initially controls proliferation of neural progenitor cells, and later neuronal differentiation. Whether Wnt growth factors affect neural progenitor cells postnatally is not known. Therefore, we have analyzed the impact of Wnt signaling on neural progenitors isolated from cerebral cortices of newborn mice. Expression profiling of pathway components revealed that these cells are fully equipped to respond to Wnt signals. However, Wnt pathway activation affected only a subset of neonatal progenitors and elicited a limited increase in proliferation and neuronal differentiation in distinct subsets of cells. Moreover, Wnt pathway activation only transiently stimulated S-phase entry but did not support long-term proliferation of progenitor cultures. The dampened nature of the Wnt response correlates with the predominant expression of inhibitory pathway components and the rapid actuation of negative feedback mechanisms. Interestingly, in differentiating cell cultures activation of canonical Wnt signaling reduced Hes1 and Hes5 expression suggesting that during postnatal neural development, Wnt/{beta}-catenin signaling enhances neurogenesis from progenitor cells by interfering with Notch pathway activity.

  14. DISCRIMINATING THE PROGENITOR TYPE OF SUPERNOVA REMNANTS WITH IRON K-SHELL EMISSION

    SciTech Connect

    Yamaguchi, Hiroya; Petre, Robert; Enoto, Teruaki; Badenes, Carles; Nakano, Toshio; Hiraga, Junko S.; Castro, Daniel; Hughes, John P.; Maeda, Yoshitomo; Nobukawa, Masayoshi; Uchida, Hiroyuki; Safi-Harb, Samar; Slane, Patrick O.; Smith, Randall K.

    2014-04-20

    Supernova remnants (SNRs) retain crucial information about both their parent explosion and circumstellar material left behind by their progenitor. However, the complexity of the interaction between supernova ejecta and ambient medium often blurs this information, and it is not uncommon for the basic progenitor type (Ia or core-collapse) of well-studied remnants to remain uncertain. Here we present a powerful new observational diagnostic to discriminate between progenitor types and constrain the ambient medium density of SNRs using solely Fe K-shell X-ray emission. We analyze all extant Suzaku observations of SNRs and detect Fe Kα emission from 23 young or middle-aged remnants, including five first detections (IC 443, G292.0+1.8, G337.2-0.7, N49, and N63A). The Fe Kα centroids clearly separate progenitor types, with the Fe-rich ejecta in Type Ia remnants being significantly less ionized than in core-collapse SNRs. Within each progenitor group, the Fe Kα luminosity and centroid are well correlated, with more luminous objects having more highly ionized Fe. Our results indicate that there is a strong connection between explosion type and ambient medium density, and suggest that Type Ia supernova progenitors do not substantially modify their surroundings at radii of up to several parsecs. We also detect a K-shell radiative recombination continuum of Fe in W49B and IC 443, implying a strong circumstellar interaction in the early evolutionary phases of these core-collapse remnants.

  15. The progenitors of stripped-envelope supernovae

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Elias-Rosa, N.

    2013-05-01

    The type Ib/c SNe are those explosions which come from massive star populations, but lack hydrogen and helium. These have been proposed to originate in the explosions of massive Wolf-Rayet stars, and we should easily be able to detect the very luminous, young progenitors if they exist. However, there has not been any detection of progenitors so far. I present the study of two extinguished Type Ic SNe 2003jg and 2004cc. In both cases there is no clear evidence of a direct detection of their progenitors in deep pre-explosion images. Upper limits derived by inserting artificial stars of known brightness at random positions around the progenitor positions (M_v>-8.8 and M_v>-9 magnitudes for the progenitors of SN 2003jg and SN 2004cc, respectively) are brighter than those expected for a massive WC (Wolf-Rayet, carbon-rich) or WO (Wolf-Rayet, oxygen-rich) (e.g., approximately between -3 and -6 in the LMC). Therefore, this is perhaps further evidence that the most massive stars may give rise to black-holes forming SNe, or it is an undetected, compact massive star hidden by a thick dust lane. However the extinction toward these SNe is currently one of the largest known. Even if these results do not directly reveal the nature of the type Ic SN progenitors, they can help to characterize the dusty environment which surrounded the progenitor of the stripped-envelope CC-SNe.

  16. Influence of bacterial toxins on the GTPase activity of transducin from bovine retinal rod outer segments

    SciTech Connect

    Rybin, V.O.; Gureeva, A.A.

    1986-05-10

    The action of cholera toxin, capable of ADP-ribosylation of the activator N/sub s/ protein, and pertussis toxin, capable of ADP-ribosylation of the inhibitor N/sub i/ protein of the adenylate cyclase complex, on transducin, the GTP-binding protein of the rod outer segments of the retina, was investigated. It was shown that under the action of pertussis and cholera toxins, the GTPase activity of transducin is inhibited. Pertussin toxin inhibits the GTPase of native retinal rod outer segments by 30-40%, while GTPase of homogeneous transducin produces a 70-80% inhibition. The action of toxins on transducin depends on the presence and nature of the guanylic nucleotide with which incubation is performed. On the basis of the data obtained it is suggested that pertussis toxin interacts with pretransducin and with the transducin-GDP complex, while cholera toxin ADP-ribosylates the transducin-GTP complex and does not act on transducin lacking GTP.

  17. Conditional cooperativity in toxin-antitoxin regulation prevents random toxin activation and promotes fast translational recovery.

    PubMed

    Cataudella, Ilaria; Trusina, Ala; Sneppen, Kim; Gerdes, Kenn; Mitarai, Namiko

    2012-08-01

    Many toxin-antitoxin (TA) loci are known to strongly repress their own transcription. This auto-inhibition is often called 'conditional cooperativity' as it relies on cooperative binding of TA complexes to operator DNA that occurs only when toxins are in a proper stoichiometric relationship with antitoxins. There has recently been an explosion of interest in TA systems due to their role in bacterial persistence, however the role of conditional cooperativity is still unclear. We reveal the biological function of conditional cooperativity by constructing a mathematical model of the well studied TA system, relBE of Escherichia coli. We show that the model with the in vivo and in vitro established parameters reproduces experimentally observed response to nutritional stress. We further demonstrate that conditional cooperativity stabilizes the level of antitoxin in rapidly growing cells such that random induction of relBE is minimized. At the same time it enables quick removal of free toxin when the starvation is terminated. PMID:22495927

  18. A Protein-Based Pentavalent Inhibitor of the Cholera Toxin B-Subunit**

    PubMed Central

    Branson, Thomas R; McAllister, Tom E; Garcia-Hartjes, Jaime; Fascione, Martin A; Ross, James F; Warriner, Stuart L; Wennekes, Tom; Zuilhof, Han; Turnbull, W Bruce

    2014-01-01

    Protein toxins produced by bacteria are the cause of many life-threatening diarrheal diseases. Many of these toxins, including cholera toxin (CT), enter the cell by first binding to glycolipids in the cell membrane. Inhibiting these multivalent protein/carbohydrate interactions would prevent the toxin from entering cells and causing diarrhea. Here we demonstrate that the site-specific modification of a protein scaffold, which is perfectly matched in both size and valency to the target toxin, provides a convenient route to an effective multivalent inhibitor. The resulting pentavalent neoglycoprotein displays an inhibition potency (IC50) of 104 pm for the CT B-subunit (CTB), which is the most potent pentavalent inhibitor for this target reported thus far. Complexation of the inhibitor and CTB resulted in a protein heterodimer. This inhibition strategy can potentially be applied to many multivalent receptors and also opens up new possibilities for protein assembly strategies. PMID:24989497

  19. Progenitor's Signatures in Type Ia Supernova Remnants

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chiotellis, A.; Kosenko, D.; Schure, K. M.; Vink, J.

    2013-01-01

    The remnants of Type Ia supernovae (SNe Ia) can provide important clues about their progenitor histories. We discuss two well-observed supernova remnants (SNRs) that are believed to have resulted from SNe Ia, and use various tools to shed light on the possible progenitor histories. We find that Kepler's SNR is consistent with a symbiotic binary progenitor consisting of a white dwarf and an AGB star. Our hydrosimulations can reproduce the observed kinematic and morphological properties. For Tycho's remnant we use the characteristics of the X-ray spectrum and kinematics to show that the ejecta has likely interacted with dense circumstellar gas.

  20. Sodium Channel Inhibiting Marine Toxins

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Llewellyn, Lyndon E.

    Saxitoxin (STX), tetrodotoxin (TTX) and their many chemical relatives are part of our daily lives. From killing people who eat seafood containing these toxins, to being valuable research tools unveiling the invisible structures of their pharmacological receptor, their global impact is beyond measure. The pharmacological receptor for these toxins is the voltage-gated sodium channel which transports Na ions between the exterior to the interior of cells. The two structurally divergent families of STX and TTX analogues bind at the same location on these Na channels to stop the flow of ions. This can affect nerves, muscles and biological senses of most animals. It is through these and other toxins that we have developed much of our fundamental understanding of the Na channel and its part in generating action potentials in excitable cells.

  1. Toxin yet not toxic: Botulinum toxin in dentistry.

    PubMed

    Archana, M S

    2016-04-01

    Paracelsus contrasted poisons from nonpoisons, stating that "All things are poisons, and there is nothing that is harmless; the dose alone decides that something is a poison". Living organisms, such as plants, animals, and microorganisms, constitute a huge source of pharmaceutically useful medicines and toxins. Depending on their source, toxins can be categorized as phytotoxins, mycotoxins, or zootoxins, which include venoms and bacterial toxins. Any toxin can be harmful or beneficial. Within the last 100 years, the perception of botulinum neurotoxin (BTX) has evolved from that of a poison to a versatile clinical agent with various uses. BTX plays a key role in the management of many orofacial and dental disorders. Its indications are rapidly expanding, with ongoing trials for further applications. However, despite its clinical use, what BTX specifically does in each condition is still not clear. The main aim of this review is to describe some of the unclear aspects of this potentially useful agent, with a focus on the current research in dentistry. PMID:27486290

  2. Brown spider (Loxosceles genus) venom toxins: tools for biological purposes.

    PubMed

    Chaim, Olga Meiri; Trevisan-Silva, Dilza; Chaves-Moreira, Daniele; Wille, Ana Carolina M; Ferrer, Valéria Pereira; Matsubara, Fernando Hitomi; Mangili, Oldemir Carlos; da Silveira, Rafael Bertoni; Gremski, Luiza Helena; Gremski, Waldemiro; Senff-Ribeiro, Andrea; Veiga, Silvio Sanches

    2011-03-01

    Venomous animals use their venoms as tools for defense or predation. These venoms are complex mixtures, mainly enriched of proteic toxins or peptides with several, and different, biological activities. In general, spider venom is rich in biologically active molecules that are useful in experimental protocols for pharmacology, biochemistry, cell biology and immunology, as well as putative tools for biotechnology and industries. Spider venoms have recently garnered much attention from several research groups worldwide. Brown spider (Loxosceles genus) venom is enriched in low molecular mass proteins (5-40 kDa). Although their venom is produced in minute volumes (a few microliters), and contain only tens of micrograms of protein, the use of techniques based on molecular biology and proteomic analysis has afforded rational projects in the area and permitted the discovery and identification of a great number of novel toxins. The brown spider phospholipase-D family is undoubtedly the most investigated and characterized, although other important toxins, such as low molecular mass insecticidal peptides, metalloproteases and hyaluronidases have also been identified and featured in literature. The molecular pathways of the action of these toxins have been reported and brought new insights in the field of biotechnology. Herein, we shall see how recent reports describing discoveries in the area of brown spider venom have expanded biotechnological uses of molecules identified in these venoms, with special emphasis on the construction of a cDNA library for venom glands, transcriptome analysis, proteomic projects, recombinant expression of different proteic toxins, and finally structural descriptions based on crystallography of toxins. PMID:22069711

  3. Brown Spider (Loxosceles genus) Venom Toxins: Tools for Biological Purposes

    PubMed Central

    Chaim, Olga Meiri; Trevisan-Silva, Dilza; Chaves-Moreira, Daniele; Wille, Ana Carolina M.; Ferrer, Valéria Pereira; Matsubara, Fernando Hitomi; Mangili, Oldemir Carlos; da Silveira, Rafael Bertoni; Gremski, Luiza Helena; Gremski, Waldemiro; Senff-Ribeiro, Andrea; Veiga, Silvio Sanches

    2011-01-01

    Venomous animals use their venoms as tools for defense or predation. These venoms are complex mixtures, mainly enriched of proteic toxins or peptides with several, and different, biological activities. In general, spider venom is rich in biologically active molecules that are useful in experimental protocols for pharmacology, biochemistry, cell biology and immunology, as well as putative tools for biotechnology and industries. Spider venoms have recently garnered much attention from several research groups worldwide. Brown spider (Loxosceles genus) venom is enriched in low molecular mass proteins (5–40 kDa). Although their venom is produced in minute volumes (a few microliters), and contain only tens of micrograms of protein, the use of techniques based on molecular biology and proteomic analysis has afforded rational projects in the area and permitted the discovery and identification of a great number of novel toxins. The brown spider phospholipase-D family is undoubtedly the most investigated and characterized, although other important toxins, such as low molecular mass insecticidal peptides, metalloproteases and hyaluronidases have also been identified and featured in literature. The molecular pathways of the action of these toxins have been reported and brought new insights in the field of biotechnology. Herein, we shall see how recent reports describing discoveries in the area of brown spider venom have expanded biotechnological uses of molecules identified in these venoms, with special emphasis on the construction of a cDNA library for venom glands, transcriptome analysis, proteomic projects, recombinant expression of different proteic toxins, and finally structural descriptions based on crystallography of toxins. PMID:22069711

  4. The Biochemical Toxin Arsenal from Ant Venoms

    PubMed Central

    Touchard, Axel; Aili, Samira R.; Fox, Eduardo Gonçalves Paterson; Escoubas, Pierre; Orivel, Jérôme; Nicholson, Graham M.; Dejean, Alain

    2016-01-01

    Ants (Formicidae) represent a taxonomically diverse group of hymenopterans with over 13,000 extant species, the majority of which inject or spray secretions from a venom gland. The evolutionary success of ants is mostly due to their unique eusociality that has permitted them to develop complex collaborative strategies, partly involving their venom secretions, to defend their nest against predators, microbial pathogens, ant competitors, and to hunt prey. Activities of ant venom include paralytic, cytolytic, haemolytic, allergenic, pro-inflammatory, insecticidal, antimicrobial, and pain-producing pharmacologic activities, while non-toxic functions include roles in chemical communication involving trail and sex pheromones, deterrents, and aggregators. While these diverse activities in ant venoms have until now been largely understudied due to the small venom yield from ants, modern analytical and venomic techniques are beginning to reveal the diversity of toxin structure and function. As such, ant venoms are distinct from other venomous animals, not only rich in linear, dimeric and disulfide-bonded peptides and bioactive proteins, but also other volatile and non-volatile compounds such as alkaloids and hydrocarbons. The present review details the unique structures and pharmacologies of known ant venom proteinaceous and alkaloidal toxins and their potential as a source of novel bioinsecticides and therapeutic agents. PMID:26805882

  5. The Biochemical Toxin Arsenal from Ant Venoms.

    PubMed

    Touchard, Axel; Aili, Samira R; Fox, Eduardo Gonçalves Paterson; Escoubas, Pierre; Orivel, Jérôme; Nicholson, Graham M; Dejean, Alain

    2016-01-01

    Ants (Formicidae) represent a taxonomically diverse group of hymenopterans with over 13,000 extant species, the majority of which inject or spray secretions from a venom gland. The evolutionary success of ants is mostly due to their unique eusociality that has permitted them to develop complex collaborative strategies, partly involving their venom secretions, to defend their nest against predators, microbial pathogens, ant competitors, and to hunt prey. Activities of ant venom include paralytic, cytolytic, haemolytic, allergenic, pro-inflammatory, insecticidal, antimicrobial, and pain-producing pharmacologic activities, while non-toxic functions include roles in chemical communication involving trail and sex pheromones, deterrents, and aggregators. While these diverse activities in ant venoms have until now been largely understudied due to the small venom yield from ants, modern analytical and venomic techniques are beginning to reveal the diversity of toxin structure and function. As such, ant venoms are distinct from other venomous animals, not only rich in linear, dimeric and disulfide-bonded peptides and bioactive proteins, but also other volatile and non-volatile compounds such as alkaloids and hydrocarbons. The present review details the unique structures and pharmacologies of known ant venom proteinaceous and alkaloidal toxins and their potential as a source of novel bioinsecticides and therapeutic agents. PMID:26805882

  6. A General Model for Toxin-Antitoxin Module Dynamics Can Explain Persister Cell Formation in E. coli

    PubMed Central

    Gelens, Lendert; Hill, Lydia; Vandervelde, Alexandra; Danckaert, Jan; Loris, Remy

    2013-01-01

    Toxin-Antitoxin modules are small operons involved in stress response and persister cell formation that encode a “toxin” and its corresponding neutralizing “antitoxin”. Regulation of these modules involves a complex mechanism known as conditional cooperativity, which is supposed to prevent unwanted toxin activation. Here we develop mathematical models for their regulation, based on published molecular and structural data, and parameterized using experimental data for F-plasmid ccdAB, bacteriophage P1 phd/doc and E. coli relBE. We show that the level of free toxin in the cell is mainly controlled through toxin sequestration in toxin-antitoxin complexes of various stoichiometry rather than by gene regulation. If the toxin translation rate exceeds twice the antitoxin translation rate, toxins accumulate in all cells. Conditional cooperativity and increasing the number of binding sites on the operator serves to reduce the metabolic burden of the cell by reducing the total amounts of proteins produced. Combining conditional cooperativity and bridging of antitoxins by toxins when bound to their operator sites allows creation of persister cells through rare, extreme stochastic spikes in the free toxin level. The amplitude of these spikes determines the duration of the persister state. Finally, increases in the antitoxin degradation rate and decreases in the bacterial growth rate cause a rise in the amount of persisters during nutritional stress. PMID:24009490

  7. Endothelial progenitor cells: identity defined?

    PubMed Central

    Timmermans, Frank; Plum, Jean; Yöder, Mervin C; Ingram, David A; Vandekerckhove, Bart; Case, Jamie

    2009-01-01

    Abstract In the past decade, researchers have gained important insights on the role of bone marrow (BM)-derived cells in adult neovascularization. A subset of BM-derived cells, called endothelial progenitor cells (EPCs), has been of particular interest, as these cells were suggested to home to sites of neovascularization and neoendothelialization and differentiate into endothelial cells (ECs) in situ, a process referred to as postnatal vasculogenesis. Therefore, EPCs were proposed as a potential regenerative tool for treating human vascular disease and a possible target to restrict vessel growth in tumour pathology. However, conflicting results have been reported in the field, and the identification, characterization, and exact role of EPCs in vascular biology is still a subject of much discussion. The focus of this review is on the controversial issues in the field of EPCs which are related to the lack of a unique EPC marker, identification challenges related to the paucity of EPCs in the circulation, and the important phenotypical and functional overlap between EPCs, haematopoietic cells and mature ECs. We also discuss our recent findings on the origin of endothelial outgrowth cells (EOCs), showing that this in vitro defined EC population does not originate from circulating CD133+ cells or CD45+ haematopoietic cells. PMID:19067770

  8. A Bispecific Antibody Promotes Aggregation of Ricin Toxin on Cell Surfaces and Alters Dynamics of Toxin Internalization and Trafficking.

    PubMed

    Herrera, Cristina; Klokk, Tove Irene; Cole, Richard; Sandvig, Kirsten; Mantis, Nicholas J

    2016-01-01

    JJX12 is an engineered bispecific antibody against ricin, a member of the medically important A-B family of toxins that exploits retrograde transport as means to gain entry into the cytosol of target cells. JJX12 consists of RTA-D10, a camelid single variable domain (VHH) antibody directed against an epitope on ricin's enzymatic subunit (RTA), linked via a 15-mer peptide to RTB-B7, a VHH against ricin's bivalent galactose binding subunit (RTB). We previously reported that JJX12, but not an equimolar mixture of RTA-D10 and RTB-B7 monomers, was able to passively protect mice against a lethal dose ricin challenge, demonstrating that physically linking RTB-B7 and RTA-D10 is critical for toxin-neutralizing activity in vivo. We also reported that JJX12 promotes aggregation of ricin in solution, presumably through the formation of intermolecular crosslinking. In the current study, we now present evidence that JJX12 affects the dynamics of ricin uptake and trafficking in human epithelial cells. Confocal microscopy, as well as live cell imaging coupled with endocytosis pathway-specific inhibitors, revealed that JJX12-toxin complexes are formed on the surfaces of mammalian cells and internalized via a pathway sensitive to amiloride, a known inhibitor of macropinocytosis. Moreover, in the presence of JJX12, retrograde transport of ricin to the trans-Golgi network was significantly reduced, while accumulation of the toxin in late endosomes was significantly enhanced. In summary, we propose that JJX12, by virtue of its ability to crosslink ricin toxin, alters the route of toxin uptake and trafficking within cells. PMID:27300140

  9. A Bispecific Antibody Promotes Aggregation of Ricin Toxin on Cell Surfaces and Alters Dynamics of Toxin Internalization and Trafficking

    PubMed Central

    Herrera, Cristina; Klokk, Tove Irene; Cole, Richard; Sandvig, Kirsten

    2016-01-01

    JJX12 is an engineered bispecific antibody against ricin, a member of the medically important A-B family of toxins that exploits retrograde transport as means to gain entry into the cytosol of target cells. JJX12 consists of RTA-D10, a camelid single variable domain (VHH) antibody directed against an epitope on ricin’s enzymatic subunit (RTA), linked via a 15-mer peptide to RTB-B7, a VHH against ricin’s bivalent galactose binding subunit (RTB). We previously reported that JJX12, but not an equimolar mixture of RTA-D10 and RTB-B7 monomers, was able to passively protect mice against a lethal dose ricin challenge, demonstrating that physically linking RTB-B7 and RTA-D10 is critical for toxin-neutralizing activity in vivo. We also reported that JJX12 promotes aggregation of ricin in solution, presumably through the formation of intermolecular crosslinking. In the current study, we now present evidence that JJX12 affects the dynamics of ricin uptake and trafficking in human epithelial cells. Confocal microscopy, as well as live cell imaging coupled with endocytosis pathway-specific inhibitors, revealed that JJX12-toxin complexes are formed on the surfaces of mammalian cells and internalized via a pathway sensitive to amiloride, a known inhibitor of macropinocytosis. Moreover, in the presence of JJX12, retrograde transport of ricin to the trans-Golgi network was significantly reduced, while accumulation of the toxin in late endosomes was significantly enhanced. In summary, we propose that JJX12, by virtue of its ability to crosslink ricin toxin, alters the route of toxin uptake and trafficking within cells. PMID:27300140

  10. MCEARD - CYANOBACTERIA AND THEIR TOXINS

    EPA Science Inventory

    Harmful algal blooms (HAB) of cyanobacteria, also known as blue-green algae, have recently become more spatially and temporally prevalent in the US and worldwide. Waterborne cyanobacteria and their highly potent toxins are a significant hazard for human health and the ecosystem....

  11. Temporal Expression of Pertussis Toxin and Ptl Secretion Proteins by Bordetella pertussis

    PubMed Central

    Rambow-Larsen, Amy A.; Weiss, Alison A.

    2004-01-01

    Pertussis toxin is an AB5 toxin comprised of protein subunits S1 through S5. The individual subunits are secreted by a Sec-dependent mechanism into the periplasm, where the toxin is assembled. The Ptl type IV secretion system mediates secretion of assembled toxin past the outer membrane. In this study, we examined the time course of protein expression, toxin assembly, and secretion as a function of the bacterial growth cycle. Logarithmic growth was observed after a 1-h lag phase. Secreted toxin was first observed at 3 h. Secretion continued throughout the logarithmic growth phase and decreased as the culture entered the stationary phase after about 24 h. On a per cell basis, toxin secretion occurred at a constant rate of 3 molecules/min/cell from 2 to 18 h. More of toxin subunits S1, S2, and S3 were produced than were secreted, resulting in periplasmic accumulation. Periplasmic S1, S2, and S3 were found to be soluble in the periplasm, as well as membrane associated. About one-half of the periplasmic S1, S2 and S3 subunits were incorporated into holotoxin. Secretion component PtlF was present at a low level at time zero, and the level increased between 2 and 24 h from 30 to 1,000 molecules per cell; however, the initial level of PtlF, 30 molecules per cell, supported maximal secretion. The accumulation of both periplasmic toxin and secretion components suggests that translation rates exceed the rate of secretion and that secretion, not toxin and Ptl complex assembly, is rate limiting. PMID:14679223

  12. Toxins as Weapons: A Historical Review.

    PubMed

    Pita, R; Romero, A

    2014-07-01

    This review article summarizes the use of toxins as weapons dating from the First World War until today, when there is a high concern of possible terrorist attacks with weapons of mass destruction. All through modern history, military programs and terrorist groups have favored toxins because of their high toxicity. However, difficulties of extraction or synthesis, as well as effective dissemination to cause a large number of casualties, have been the most important drawbacks. Special emphasis is focused on ricin and botulinum toxin, the most important toxins that have attracted the attention of military programs and terrorist groups. Other toxins like trichothecenes, saxitoxin, and Staphylococcal enterotoxin B (SEB) are also discussed. A short section about anthrax is also included: Although Bacillus anthracis is considered a biological weapon rather than a toxin weapon, it produces a toxin that is finally responsible for the anthrax disease. PMID:26227025

  13. Nephrotoxic mechanisms of drugs and environmental toxins

    SciTech Connect

    Porter, G.A.

    1982-01-01

    This book contains 39 contributions divided into five sections each with its own editor and introductory chapter. The first section of nine chapters is concerned with the pathophysiology of acute renal failure. The second section is concerned with the growing problem of renal failure due to the use of antimicrobial agents such as the aminoglycosides. The various causes of tubulointerstitial nephropathy, notably analgesic drugs and environmental toxins such as mycotoxins and lead, are covered in the third section. Environmental and industrial nephrotoxins, such as cadmium, and halogenated aliphatic hydrocarbons, such as chloroform, are the subject of the fourth section. The last section of nine chapters is concerned mainly with a relatively new area of research into immunological mechanisms of nephrotoxicity and the evidence that drugs and other environmental chemicals can serve as antigens for immune complex formation.

  14. Botulinum toxin drugs: brief history and outlook.

    PubMed

    Dressler, D

    2016-03-01

    The global botulinum toxin (BT) market is currently undergoing rapid changes: this may be the time to review the history and the future of BT drug development. Since the early 1990s Botox(®) and Dysport(®) dominated the international BT market. Later, Myobloc(®)/NeuroBloc(®), a liquid BT type B drug, came out, but failed. Xeomin(®) is the latest major BT drug. It features removal of complexing proteins and improved neurotoxin purity. Several new BT drugs are coming out of Korea, China and Russia. Scientific challenges for BT drug development include modification of BT's duration of action, its transdermal transport and the design of BT hybrid drugs for specific target tissues. The increased competition will change the global BT market fundamentally and a re-organisation according to large indication groups, such as therapeutic and cosmetic applications, might occur. PMID:26559824

  15. Neural Progenitors Adopt Specific Identities by Directly Repressing All Alternative Progenitor Transcriptional Programs

    PubMed Central

    Kutejova, Eva; Sasai, Noriaki; Shah, Ankita; Gouti, Mina; Briscoe, James

    2016-01-01

    Summary In the vertebrate neural tube, a morphogen-induced transcriptional network produces multiple molecularly distinct progenitor domains, each generating different neuronal subtypes. Using an in vitro differentiation system, we defined gene expression signatures of distinct progenitor populations and identified direct gene-regulatory inputs corresponding to locations of specific transcription factor binding. Combined with targeted perturbations of the network, this revealed a mechanism in which a progenitor identity is installed by active repression of the entire transcriptional programs of other neural progenitor fates. In the ventral neural tube, sonic hedgehog (Shh) signaling, together with broadly expressed transcriptional activators, concurrently activates the gene expression programs of several domains. The specific outcome is selected by repressive input provided by Shh-induced transcription factors that act as the key nodes in the network, enabling progenitors to adopt a single definitive identity from several initially permitted options. Together, the data suggest design principles relevant to many developing tissues. PMID:26972603

  16. Neural Progenitors Adopt Specific Identities by Directly Repressing All Alternative Progenitor Transcriptional Programs.

    PubMed

    Kutejova, Eva; Sasai, Noriaki; Shah, Ankita; Gouti, Mina; Briscoe, James

    2016-03-21

    In the vertebrate neural tube, a morphogen-induced transcriptional network produces multiple molecularly distinct progenitor domains, each generating different neuronal subtypes. Using an in vitro differentiation system, we defined gene expression signatures of distinct progenitor populations and identified direct gene-regulatory inputs corresponding to locations of specific transcription factor binding. Combined with targeted perturbations of the network, this revealed a mechanism in which a progenitor identity is installed by active repression of the entire transcriptional programs of other neural progenitor fates. In the ventral neural tube, sonic hedgehog (Shh) signaling, together with broadly expressed transcriptional activators, concurrently activates the gene expression programs of several domains. The specific outcome is selected by repressive input provided by Shh-induced transcription factors that act as the key nodes in the network, enabling progenitors to adopt a single definitive identity from several initially permitted options. Together, the data suggest design principles relevant to many developing tissues. PMID:26972603

  17. Nemertean Toxin Genes Revealed through Transcriptome Sequencing

    PubMed Central

    Whelan, Nathan V.; Kocot, Kevin M.; Santos, Scott R.; Halanych, Kenneth M.

    2014-01-01

    Nemerteans are one of few animal groups that have evolved the ability to utilize toxins for both defense and subduing prey, but little is known about specific nemertean toxins. In particular, no study has identified specific toxin genes even though peptide toxins are known from some nemertean species. Information about toxin genes is needed to better understand evolution of toxins across animals and possibly provide novel targets for pharmaceutical and industrial applications. We sequenced and annotated transcriptomes of two free-living and one commensal nemertean and annotated an additional six publicly available nemertean transcriptomes to identify putative toxin genes. Approximately 63–74% of predicted open reading frames in each transcriptome were annotated with gene names, and all species had similar percentages of transcripts annotated with each higher-level GO term. Every nemertean analyzed possessed genes with high sequence similarities to known animal toxins including those from stonefish, cephalopods, and sea anemones. One toxin-like gene found in all nemerteans analyzed had high sequence similarity to Plancitoxin-1, a DNase II hepatotoxin that may function well at low pH, which suggests that the acidic body walls of some nemerteans could work to enhance the efficacy of protein toxins. The highest number of toxin-like genes found in any one species was seven and the lowest was three. The diversity of toxin-like nemertean genes found here is greater than previously documented, and these animals are likely an ideal system for exploring toxin evolution and industrial applications of toxins. PMID:25432940

  18. Nemertean toxin genes revealed through transcriptome sequencing.

    PubMed

    Whelan, Nathan V; Kocot, Kevin M; Santos, Scott R; Halanych, Kenneth M

    2014-12-01

    Nemerteans are one of few animal groups that have evolved the ability to utilize toxins for both defense and subduing prey, but little is known about specific nemertean toxins. In particular, no study has identified specific toxin genes even though peptide toxins are known from some nemertean species. Information about toxin genes is needed to better understand evolution of toxins across animals and possibly provide novel targets for pharmaceutical and industrial applications. We sequenced and annotated transcriptomes of two free-living and one commensal nemertean and annotated an additional six publicly available nemertean transcriptomes to identify putative toxin genes. Approximately 63-74% of predicted open reading frames in each transcriptome were annotated with gene names, and all species had similar percentages of transcripts annotated with each higher-level GO term. Every nemertean analyzed possessed genes with high sequence similarities to known animal toxins including those from stonefish, cephalopods, and sea anemones. One toxin-like gene found in all nemerteans analyzed had high sequence similarity to Plancitoxin-1, a DNase II hepatotoxin that may function well at low pH, which suggests that the acidic body walls of some nemerteans could work to enhance the efficacy of protein toxins. The highest number of toxin-like genes found in any one species was seven and the lowest was three. The diversity of toxin-like nemertean genes found here is greater than previously documented, and these animals are likely an ideal system for exploring toxin evolution and industrial applications of toxins. PMID:25432940

  19. Tissue-resident mesenchymal stem/progenitor cells in skeletal muscle: collaborators or saboteurs?

    PubMed Central

    Judson, Robert N.; Zhang, Regan-Heng; Rossi, Fabio M. A.

    2016-01-01

    Although the regenerative potential of adult skeletal muscle is maintained by satellite cells, other stem/progenitor cell populations also reside in skeletal muscle. These heterogeneous cellular pools with mesenchymal lineage potentially play important roles in tissue homeostasis, with reciprocal collaborations between these cells and satellite cells appearing critical for effective regeneration. However, in disease settings, these mesenchymal stem/progenitors adopt a more sinister role – likely providing a major source of fibrosis, fatty tissue and extracellular matrix protein deposition in dystrophic tissue. Development of therapies for muscle degeneration therefore requires complete understanding of the multiple cell types involved and their complex interactions. PMID:23763717

  20. Sonic hedgehog lineage in the mouse hypothalamus: from progenitor domains to hypothalamic regions

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background The hypothalamus is a brain region with essential functions for homeostasis and energy metabolism, and alterations of its development can contribute to pathological conditions in the adult, like hypertension, diabetes or obesity. However, due to the anatomical complexity of the hypothalamus, its development is not well understood. Sonic hedgehog (Shh) is a key developmental regulator gene expressed in a dynamic pattern in hypothalamic progenitor cells. To obtain insight into hypothalamic organization, we used genetic inducible fate mapping (GIFM) to map the lineages derived from Shh-expressing progenitor domains onto the four rostrocaudally arranged hypothalamic regions: preoptic, anterior, tuberal and mammillary. Results Shh-expressing progenitors labeled at an early stage (before embryonic day (E)9.5) contribute neurons and astrocytes to a large caudal area including the mammillary and posterior tuberal regions as well as tanycytes (specialized median eminence glia). Progenitors labeled at later stages (after E9.5) give rise to neurons and astrocytes of the entire tuberal region and in particular the ventromedial nucleus, but not to cells in the mammillary region and median eminence. At this stage, an additional Shh-expressing domain appears in the preoptic area and contributes mostly astrocytes to the hypothalamus. Shh-expressing progenitors do not contribute to the anterior region at any stage. Finally, we show a gradual shift from neurogenesis to gliogenesis, so that progenitors expressing Shh after E12.5 generate almost exclusively hypothalamic astrocytes. Conclusions We define a fate map of the hypothalamus, based on the dynamic expression of Shh in the hypothalamic progenitor zones. We provide evidence that the large neurogenic Shh-expressing progenitor domains of the ventral diencephalon are continuous with those of the midbrain. We demonstrate that the four classical transverse zones of the hypothalamus have clearly defined progenitor domains

  1. Emerging Roles of Toxin-Antitoxin Modules in Bacterial Pathogenesis.

    PubMed

    Kędzierska, Barbara; Hayes, Finbarr

    2016-01-01

    Toxin-antitoxin (TA) cassettes are encoded widely by bacteria. The modules typically comprise a protein toxin and protein or RNA antitoxin that sequesters the toxin factor. Toxin activation in response to environmental cues or other stresses promotes a dampening of metabolism, most notably protein translation, which permits survival until conditions improve. Emerging evidence also implicates TAs in bacterial pathogenicity. Bacterial persistence involves entry into a transient semi-dormant state in which cells survive unfavorable conditions including killing by antibiotics, which is a significant clinical problem. TA complexes play a fundamental role in inducing persistence by downregulating cellular metabolism. Bacterial biofilms are important in numerous chronic inflammatory and infectious diseases and cause serious therapeutic problems due to their multidrug tolerance and resistance to host immune system actions. Multiple TAs influence biofilm formation through a network of interactions with other factors that mediate biofilm production and maintenance. Moreover, in view of their emerging contributions to bacterial virulence, TAs are potential targets for novel prophylactic and therapeutic approaches that are required urgently in an era of expanding antibiotic resistance. This review summarizes the emerging evidence that implicates TAs in the virulence profiles of a diverse range of key bacterial pathogens that trigger serious human disease. PMID:27322231

  2. Chemodiversity of cereulide, the emetic toxin of Bacillus cereus.

    PubMed

    Marxen, Sandra; Stark, Timo D; Frenzel, Elrike; Rütschle, Andrea; Lücking, Genia; Pürstinger, Gabriel; Pohl, Elena E; Scherer, Siegfried; Ehling-Schulz, Monika; Hofmann, Thomas

    2015-03-01

    Food-borne intoxications are increasingly caused by the dodecadepsipeptide cereulide, the emetic toxin produced by Bacillus cereus. As such intoxications pose a health risk to humans, a more detailed understanding on the chemodiversity of this toxin is mandatory for the reliable risk assessment of B. cereus toxins in foods. Mass spectrometric screening now shows a series of at least 18 cereulide variants, among which the previously unknown isocereulides A-G were determined for the first time by means of UPLC-TOF MS and ion-trap MS(n) sequencing, (13)C-labeling experiments, and post-hydrolytic dipeptide and enantioselective amino acid analysis. The data demonstrate a high microheterogeneity in cereulide and show evidence for a relaxed proof reading function of the non-ribosomal cereulide peptide synthetase complex giving rise to an enhanced cereulide chemodiversity. Most intriguingly, the isocereulides were found to differ widely in their cell toxicity correlating with their ionophoric properties (e.g., purified isocereulide A showed about 8-fold higher cytotoxicity than purified cereulide in the HEp-2 assay and induced an immediate breakdown of bilayer membranes). These findings provide a substantial contribution to the knowledge-based risk assessment of B. cereus toxins in foods, representing a still unsolved challenge in the field of food intoxications. PMID:25665710

  3. STELLAR BINARY COMPANIONS TO SUPERNOVA PROGENITORS

    SciTech Connect

    Kochanek, Christopher S.

    2009-12-20

    For typical models of binary statistics, 50%-80% of core-collapse supernova (ccSN) progenitors are members of a stellar binary at the time of the explosion. Independent of any consequences of mass transfer, this has observational consequences that can be used to study the binary properties of massive stars. In particular, the secondary companion to the progenitor of a Type Ib/c SN is frequently (approx50%) the more optically luminous star since the high effective temperatures of the stripped progenitors make it relatively easy for a lower luminosity, cooler secondary to emit more optical light. Secondaries to the lower mass progenitors of Type II SN will frequently produce excess blue emission relative to the spectral energy distribution of the red primary. Available data constrain the models weakly. Any detected secondaries also provide an independent lower bound on the progenitor mass and, for historical SN, show that it was not a Type Ia event. Bright ccSN secondaries have an unambiguous, post-explosion observational signature-strong, blueshifted, relatively broad absorption lines created by the developing SN remnant (SNR). These can be used to locate historical SN with bright secondaries, confirm that a source is a secondary, and, potentially, measure abundances of ccSN ejecta. Luminous, hot secondaries will re-ionize the SNR on timescales of 100-1000 yr that are faster than re-ionization by the reverse shock, creating peculiar H II regions due to the high metallicity and velocities of the ejecta.

  4. PTF 11kx: a type Ia supernova with a symbiotic nova progenitor.

    PubMed

    Dilday, B; Howell, D A; Cenko, S B; Silverman, J M; Nugent, P E; Sullivan, M; Ben-Ami, S; Bildsten, L; Bolte, M; Endl, M; Filippenko, A V; Gnat, O; Horesh, A; Hsiao, E; Kasliwal, M M; Kirkman, D; Maguire, K; Marcy, G W; Moore, K; Pan, Y; Parrent, J T; Podsiadlowski, P; Quimby, R M; Sternberg, A; Suzuki, N; Tytler, D R; Xu, D; Bloom, J S; Gal-Yam, A; Hook, I M; Kulkarni, S R; Law, N M; Ofek, E O; Polishook, D; Poznanski, D

    2012-08-24

    There is a consensus that type Ia supernovae (SNe Ia) arise from the thermonuclear explosion of white dwarf stars that accrete matter from a binary companion. However, direct observation of SN Ia progenitors is lacking, and the precise nature of the binary companion remains uncertain. A temporal series of high-resolution optical spectra of the SN Ia PTF 11kx reveals a complex circumstellar environment that provides an unprecedentedly detailed view of the progenitor system. Multiple shells of circumstellar material are detected, and the SN ejecta are seen to interact with circumstellar material starting 59 days after the explosion. These features are best described by a symbiotic nova progenitor, similar to RS Ophiuchi. PMID:22923575

  5. Endothelin-1 supports clonal derivation and expansion of cardiovascular progenitors derived from human embryonic stem cells

    PubMed Central

    Soh, Boon-Seng; Ng, Shi-Yan; Wu, Hao; Buac, Kristina; Park, Joo-Hye C.; Lian, Xiaojun; Xu, Jiejia; Foo, Kylie S.; Felldin, Ulrika; He, Xiaobing; Nichane, Massimo; Yang, Henry; Bu, Lei; Li, Ronald A.; Lim, Bing; Chien, Kenneth R.

    2016-01-01

    Coronary arteriogenesis is a central step in cardiogenesis, requiring coordinated generation and integration of endothelial cell and vascular smooth muscle cells. At present, it is unclear whether the cell fate programme of cardiac progenitors to generate complex muscular or vascular structures is entirely cell autonomous. Here we demonstrate the intrinsic ability of vascular progenitors to develop and self-organize into cardiac tissues by clonally isolating and expanding second heart field cardiovascular progenitors using WNT3A and endothelin-1 (EDN1) human recombinant proteins. Progenitor clones undergo long-term expansion and differentiate primarily into endothelial and smooth muscle cell lineages in vitro, and contribute extensively to coronary-like vessels in vivo, forming a functional human–mouse chimeric circulatory system. Our study identifies EDN1 as a key factor towards the generation and clonal derivation of ISL1+ vascular intermediates, and demonstrates the intrinsic cell-autonomous nature of these progenitors to differentiate and self-organize into functional vasculatures in vivo. PMID:26952167

  6. Endothelin-1 supports clonal derivation and expansion of cardiovascular progenitors derived from human embryonic stem cells.

    PubMed

    Soh, Boon-Seng; Ng, Shi-Yan; Wu, Hao; Buac, Kristina; Park, Joo-Hye C; Lian, Xiaojun; Xu, Jiejia; Foo, Kylie S; Felldin, Ulrika; He, Xiaobing; Nichane, Massimo; Yang, Henry; Bu, Lei; Li, Ronald A; Lim, Bing; Chien, Kenneth R

    2016-01-01

    Coronary arteriogenesis is a central step in cardiogenesis, requiring coordinated generation and integration of endothelial cell and vascular smooth muscle cells. At present, it is unclear whether the cell fate programme of cardiac progenitors to generate complex muscular or vascular structures is entirely cell autonomous. Here we demonstrate the intrinsic ability of vascular progenitors to develop and self-organize into cardiac tissues by clonally isolating and expanding second heart field cardiovascular progenitors using WNT3A and endothelin-1 (EDN1) human recombinant proteins. Progenitor clones undergo long-term expansion and differentiate primarily into endothelial and smooth muscle cell lineages in vitro, and contribute extensively to coronary-like vessels in vivo, forming a functional human-mouse chimeric circulatory system. Our study identifies EDN1 as a key factor towards the generation and clonal derivation of ISL1(+) vascular intermediates, and demonstrates the intrinsic cell-autonomous nature of these progenitors to differentiate and self-organize into functional vasculatures in vivo. PMID:26952167

  7. Why do we study animal toxins?

    PubMed Central

    ZHANG, Yun

    2015-01-01

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

  8. Why do we study animal toxins?

    PubMed

    Zhang, Yun

    2015-07-18

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

  9. Clostridium difficile toxin expression is inhibited by the novel regulator TcdC.

    PubMed

    Matamouros, Susana; England, Patrick; Dupuy, Bruno

    2007-06-01

    Clostridium difficile, an emerging nosocomial pathogen of increasing clinical significance, produces two large protein toxins that are responsible for the cellular damage associated with the disease. The precise mechanisms by which toxin synthesis is regulated in response to environmental change have yet to be discovered. The toxin genes (tcdA and tcdB) are located in a pathogenicity locus (PaLoc), along with tcdR and tcdC. TcdR is an alternative RNA polymerase sigma factor that directly activates toxin gene expression, while the inverse relationship between expression of tcdR, tcdA and tcdB genes on the one hand and tcdC on the other has led to the suggestion that TcdC somehow interferes with toxin gene expression. This idea is further supported by the finding that many recent C. difficile epidemic strains in which toxin production is increased carry a common tcdC deletion mutation. In this report we demonstrate that TcdC negatively regulates toxin synthesis both in vivo and in vitro. TcdC destabilizes the TcdR-containing holoenzyme before open complex formation, apparently by interaction with TcdR or TcdR-containing RNA polymerase holoenzyme or both. In addition, we show that the hypertoxigenicity phenotype of C. difficile epidemic strains is not due to their common 18 bp in-frame deletion in tcdC. PMID:17542920

  10. Iron Specifically Protects Corn Protoplasts from T-Toxin of Cochliobolus heterostrophus1

    PubMed Central

    MacRae, W. Donald; Yoder, O. C.

    1987-01-01

    Ferric ion reduced the damaging effects of T-toxin, a series of linear β-polyketols produced by the pathogenic fungus Cochliobolus heterostrophus, on leaf mesophyll protoplasts from susceptible T-cytoplasm corn. Of nine metals tested, only ferric and ferrous ions had this effect. Despite the presence of 12 available oxygen atoms in each T-toxin molecule, there was no evidence for the formation of an aqueous Fe2+- or Fe3+-T-toxin complex. The protective effect of iron was eliminated by a molar excess of EDTA. Iron had no effect on the sensitivity of T-cytoplasm mitochondria to T-toxin, even at a 1000-fold molar excess, nor did it protect roots of T-cytoplasm corn seedlings from inhibition by T-toxin. The mechanism by which iron specifically protects protoplasts from T-toxin is not understood, but time lapse experiments suggest that iron acts on some intracellular site to modify T-toxin sensitivity and not on a transport system at the cell surface. Images Fig. 1 PMID:16665594