- Recognition of Propionibacterium acnes by human TLR2 heterodimers. [Journal Article]
- IJInt J Med Microbiol 2016 Dec 12
- Propionibacterium acnes has been considered as a crucial contributor to the pathogenesis of acne vulgaris. The interaction between P. acnes and the host is mainly mediated by Toll like receptor (TLR)...
Propionibacterium acnes has been considered as a crucial contributor to the pathogenesis of acne vulgaris. The interaction between P. acnes and the host is mainly mediated by Toll like receptor (TLR) 2 recognition. TLR2 homodimers recognize P. acnes in mice, but here we describe the prerequisite of TLR2/1 and TLR2/6 heterodimers in human cells for P. acnes recognition. P. acnes-induced NF-κB and AP-1activation observed in HEK hTLR2-transfected but not control cells confirmed the specificity of TLR2 recognition. The activation was blocked by neutralizing antibodies against TLR2, TLR1 and TLR6, as well as the TLR2 antagonist CU-CPT22, which showed no selectivity towards human TLR2 heterodimers. The combination of anti-TLR1 and anti-TLR6 antibodies completely abrogated activation by P. acnes. In primary human keratinocytes, P. acnes-increased NF-κB phosphorylation was inhibited by anti-TLR6 and anti-TLR2 antibodies. Furthermore, P. acnes-induced inflammatory responses were impaired by anti-TLR2 neutralizing antibodies and fully blocked by CU-CPT22. Our study suggests species-specific recognition of P. acnes by TLR2 heterodimers which can be exploited therapeutically by small molecules targeting TLR2 for the control of inflammatory responses.
- Staphylococcus aureus from the German general population is highly diverse. [Journal Article]
- IJInt J Med Microbiol 2016 Nov 30
- CONCLUSIONS: MSSA colonizing human nares in the community are clonally highly diverse. Among those constantly carrying S. aureus, clonal lineages changed over time. The proportion of persistent S. aureus carriers was lower than reported elsewhere.
- The cell wall precursor lipid II acts as a molecular signal for the Ser/Thr kinase PknB of Staphylococcus aureus. [Journal Article]
- IJInt J Med Microbiol 2016 Dec 12
- The assembly of the bacterial cell wall requires synchronization of a multitude of biosynthetic machineries and regulatory networks. The eukaryotic-like serine/threonine kinase PknB has been implicat...
The assembly of the bacterial cell wall requires synchronization of a multitude of biosynthetic machineries and regulatory networks. The eukaryotic-like serine/threonine kinase PknB has been implicated in coordinating cross-wall formation, autolysis and cell division in Staphylococcus aureus. However, the signal molecule sensed by this kinase remained elusive so far. Here, we provide compelling biochemical evidence that PknB interacts with the ultimate cell wall precursor lipid II, triggering kinase activity. Moreover, we observed crosstalk of PknB with the two component system WalKR and identified the early cell division protein FtsZ as another PknB phosphorylation substrate in S. aureus. In agreement with the implied role in regulation of cell envelope metabolism, we found PknB to preferentially localize to the septum of S. aureus and the PASTA domains to be crucial for recruitment to this site. The data provide a model for the contribution of PknB to control cell wall metabolism and cell division.
- Influence of Platelet-rich Plasma on the immune response of human monocyte-derived dendritic cells and macrophages stimulated with Aspergillus fumigatus. [Journal Article]
- IJInt J Med Microbiol 2016 Dec 09
- Dendritic cells (DCs) and macrophages (MΦ) are critical for protection against pathogenic fungi including Aspergillus fumigatus. To analyze the role of platelets in the innate immune response, human ...
Dendritic cells (DCs) and macrophages (MΦ) are critical for protection against pathogenic fungi including Aspergillus fumigatus. To analyze the role of platelets in the innate immune response, human DCs and MΦs were challenged with A. fumigatus in presence or absence of human platelet rich plasma (PRP). Gene expression analyses and functional investigations were performed. A systems biological approach was used for initial modelling of the DC - A. fumigatus interaction. DCs in a quiescent state together with different corresponding activation states were validated using gene expression data from DCs and MΦ stimulated with A. fumigatus. To characterize the influence of platelets on the immune response of DCs and MΦ to A. fumigatus, we experimentally quantified their cytokine secretion, phagocytic capacity, maturation, and metabolic activity with or without platelets. PRP in combination with A. fumigatus treatment resulted in the highest expression of the maturation markers CD80, CD83 and CD86 in DCs. Furthermore, PRP enhanced the capacity of macrophages and DCs to phagocytose A. fumigatus conidia. In parallel, PRP in combination with the innate immune cells significantly reduced the metabolic activity of the fungus. Interestingly, A. fumigatus and PRP stimulated MΦ showed a significantly reduced gene expression and secretion of IL6 while PRP only reduced the IL-6 secretion of A. fumigatus stimulated DCs. The in silico systems biological model correlated well with these experimental data. Different modules centrally involved in DC function became clearly apparent, including DC maturation, cytokine response and apoptosis pathways. Taken together, the ability of PRP to suppress IL-6 release of human DCs might prevent local excessive inflammatory hemorrhage, tissue infarction and necrosis in the human lung.
- High level methicillin resistance correlates with reduced Staphylococcus aureus endothelial cell damage. [Journal Article]
- IJInt J Med Microbiol 2016 Nov 30
- There has been controversy about the intrinsic virulence of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) as compared to methicillin-susceptible S. aureus (MSSA). To address this discrepancy, th...
There has been controversy about the intrinsic virulence of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) as compared to methicillin-susceptible S. aureus (MSSA). To address this discrepancy, the intrinsic virulence of 42 MRSA and 40 MSSA clinical isolates was assessed by testing endothelial cell (EC) damage, a surrogate marker for virulence in blood stream infections. Since these clinical isolates represent a heterogeneous group, well characterized S. aureus laboratory strains with SCCmec loss- and gain-of-function mutations were used in addition. The clinical MRSA isolates carrying typical hospital acquired SCCmec types (I, II or III) induced significantly less damage (47.8%) as compared to isolates with other SCCmec types (62.3%, p=0.03) and MSSA isolates (64.2%, p<0.01). There was a strong inverse correlation between high-level oxacillin resistance and low EC damage induction (R(2)=0.4464, p<0.001). High-level oxacillin resistant strains (MIC >32μ/ml) grew significantly slower as compared to isolates with low-level resistance (p=0.047). The level of EC damage positively correlated with α- and δ-toxin production (p<0.0001 and p<0.05, respectively) but not with β-toxin production. Invasive MRSA isolates (n=21, 56.3%) were significantly less cytotoxic as compared to invasive MSSA isolates (n=20, 68.0%, p<0.05). There was no difference between EC damage induced by superficial versus invasive isolates in either MRSA or MSSA strains. Our data suggest that the intrinsic virulence of MRSA is similar or even reduced as compared to MSSA strains but is linked to the level of methicillin resistance.
- The ER-mitochondria encounter structure contributes to hyphal growth, mitochondrial morphology and virulence of the pathogenic mold Aspergillus fumigatus. [Journal Article]
- IJInt J Med Microbiol 2016 Nov 27
- Aspergillus fumigatus is an opportunistic fungal pathogen and the primary causative species of invasive aspergillosis, a systemic disease associated with high mortality rates. Treatment of invasive f...
Aspergillus fumigatus is an opportunistic fungal pathogen and the primary causative species of invasive aspergillosis, a systemic disease associated with high mortality rates. Treatment of invasive fungal infection relies on a very limited number of antifungal drug classes. In order to extend the spectrum of antifungal drugs novel target structures have to be identified. The ER-mitochondria encounter structure (ERMES), a recently discovered tether that links mitochondria and endoplasmic reticulum, is a potential drug target based on its absence in Metazoa. Very recently, it was shown that ERMES is important for the fitness and immune evasion of the pathogenic yeast Candida albicans. We studied the role of the four ERMES core components Mdm10, Mdm12, Mdm34 and Mmm1 in the pathogenic mold A. fumigatus. By construction and characterizing conditional mutants of all four core components and deletion mutants of mdm10 and mdm12, we show that each component is of significant importance for growth of the fungal pathogen. While markedness of the individual mutant phenotypes differed slightly, all components are important for maintenance of the mitochondrial morphology and the intra-organellar distribution of nucleoids. Characterization of the Mmm1 ERMES mutant in a Galleria mellonella infection model indicates that ERMES contributes to virulence of A. fumigatus. Our results demonstrate that pharmacologic inhibition of ERMES could exert antifungal activity against this important pathogen.
- Differentiation of Staphylococcus argenteus (formerly: Staphylococcus aureus clonal complex 75) by mass spectrometry from S. aureus using the first strain isolated from a wild African great ape. [Journal Article]
- IJInt J Med Microbiol 2016 Nov 30
- The species Staphylococcus argenteus was separated recently from Staphylococcus aureus (Tong S.Y., F. Schaumburg, M.J. Ellington, J. Corander, B. Pichon, F. Leendertz, S.D. Bentley, J. Parkhill, D.C....
The species Staphylococcus argenteus was separated recently from Staphylococcus aureus (Tong S.Y., F. Schaumburg, M.J. Ellington, J. Corander, B. Pichon, F. Leendertz, S.D. Bentley, J. Parkhill, D.C. Holt, G. Peters, and P.M. Giffard, 2015). The objective of this work was to characterise the genome of a non-human S. argenteus strain, which had been isolated from the faeces of a wild-living western lowland gorilla in Gabon, and analyse the spectrum of this species in matrix-assisted laser desorption ionization-time of flight mass spectrometry (MALDI-TOF MS). The full genome sequence revealed a scarcity of virulence genes and absence of resistance genes, indicating a decreased virulence potential compared to S. aureus and the human methicillin-resistant S. argenteus isolate MSHR1132(T). Spectra obtained by MALDI-TOF MS and the analysis of available sequences in the genome databases identified several MALDI-TOF MS signals that clearly differentiate S. argenteus, the closely related Staphylococcus schweitzeri and S. aureus. In conclusion, in the absence of biochemical tests that identify the three species, mass spectrometry should be employed as method of choice.
- Strain-specific impact of the high-pathogenicity island on virulence in extra-intestinal pathogenic Escherichia coli. [Journal Article]
- IJInt J Med Microbiol 2016 Nov 22
- In order to clarify the role of the high-pathogenicity island (HPI) in the experimental virulence of Escherichia coli, we constructed different deletion mutants of the entire HPI and of three individ...
In order to clarify the role of the high-pathogenicity island (HPI) in the experimental virulence of Escherichia coli, we constructed different deletion mutants of the entire HPI and of three individual genes (irp2, fyuA and ybtA), encoding for three main functions within the HPI. Those mutants were constructed for three phylogroup B2 strains (536-STc127, CFT073-STc73, and NU14-STc95), representative of the main B2 subgroups causing extra-intestinal infections. Transcriptional profiles obtained for the selected HPI genes irp2, fyuA and ybtA revealed similar patterns for all strains, both under selective iron-deplete conditions and in intracellular bacterial communities in vitro, with a high expression of irp2. Deletion of irp2 and ybtA abrogated yersiniabactin production, whereas the fyuA knockout was only slightly impaired for siderophore synthesis. The experimental virulence of the strains was then tested in amoeba Dictyostelium discoideum and mouse septicaemia models. No effect of any HPI mutant was observed for the two more virulent strains 536 and CFT073. In contrast, the virulence of the less virulent NU14 strain was dramatically diminished by the complete deletion of the HPI and irp2 gene whereas a lesser reduction in virulence was observed for the fyuA and ybtA deletion mutants. The two experimental virulence models gave similar results. It appears that the role of the HPI in experimental virulence is depending on the genetic background of the strains despite similar inter-strain transcriptional patterns of HPI genes, as well as of the functional class of the studied gene. Altogether, these data indicate that the intrinsic extra-intestinal virulence in the E. coli species is multigenic, with epistatic interactions between the genes.
- Antimicrobial resistance and molecular subtypes of Salmonella enterica serovar Typhi isolates from Kolkata, India over a 15 years period 1998-2012. [Journal Article]
- IJInt J Med Microbiol 2016 Nov 25
- Typhoid fever, caused by Salmonella enterica serovar Typhi (S. Typhi), remains an unresolved public health problem in India. Emergence of antimicrobial resistant strains poses a great concern for typ...
Typhoid fever, caused by Salmonella enterica serovar Typhi (S. Typhi), remains an unresolved public health problem in India. Emergence of antimicrobial resistant strains poses a great concern for typhoid treatment and influences reshaping of current S. Typhi population. We included representative S. Typhi strains (n=164) from retrospective studies, both community and hospital based, conducted at National Institute of Cholera and Enteric Diseases, Kolkata during 15 years period (1998-2012) to analyze their antimicrobial resistance (AMR) profiles, mechanism of AMR and molecular subtypes of the strains. More than 60% of the S. Typhi isolates were obtained from community based studies. During the study period, steady decline (46.4%-15.6%) in isolation of multidrug-resistant (MDR, resistant to ampicillin, chloramphenicol and co-trimoxazole) S. Typhi was noticed with parallel increase of nalidixic acid-resistant (NAL(R)) strains (60.7%-93.8%) and ciprofloxacin resistant (CIP(R)) strains (0%-25%). Of 53 MDR strains, 46 (86.8%) were NAL(R) showing decreased ciprofloxacin susceptible (DCS) (MIC for ciprofloxacin 0.12-0.5μg/ml) phenotype. Conjugative IncHI1 (230kb) and non-conjugative non-IncHI1 (180kb) plasmids were found in 23 (43.4%) and 14 (26.4%) MDR strains respectively, plasmid was absent in 16 (30.2%) MDR strains. MDR strains with or without plasmid shared the same set of resistance genes (blaTEM-1, catA1, sul1, sul2, strA and strB) and class 1 integron possessing dfrA7 gene cassette. Two S. Typhi strains harbored 50kb transferrable plasmids carrying dfrA15 and aadA1 gene cassettes in class 1 integron. The majority of the strains (135/164, 82.3%) belonged to H58 haplotype. Among the MDR isolates, fluoroquinolone resistant or combined resistant isolates (n=147), 127 (86.4%) were H58 and 20 (13.6%) belonged to non-H58. NAL(R)S. Typhi strains with decreased susceptibility or resistance to ciprofloxacin had point mutation(s) in quinolone resistance-determining region of gyrA and parC genes. Pulsed-field gel electrophoresis showed more diversity among NAL(R)S. Typhi than MDR strains. Results of this study generated information useful for better understanding of the disease epidemiology and its control in endemic settings.
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- Host transcriptomic responses to pneumonic plague reveal that Yersinia pestis inhibits both the initial adaptive and innate immune responses in mice. [Journal Article]
- IJInt J Med Microbiol 2016 Nov 14
- Pneumonic plague is the most deadly form of infection caused by Yersinia pestis and can progress extremely fast. However, our understanding on the host transcriptomic response to pneumonic plague is ...
Pneumonic plague is the most deadly form of infection caused by Yersinia pestis and can progress extremely fast. However, our understanding on the host transcriptomic response to pneumonic plague is insufficient. Here, we used RNA-sequencing technology to analyze transcriptomic responses in mice infected with fully virulent strain 201 or EV76, a live attenuated vaccine strain lacking the pigmentation locus. Approximately 600 differentially expressed genes (DEGs) were detected in lungs from both 201- and EV76-infected mice at 12h post-infection (hpi). DEGs in lungs of 201-infected mice exceeded 2000 at 48hpi, accompanied by sustained large numbers of DEGs in the liver and spleen; however, limited numbers of DEGs were detected in those organs of EV-infected mice. Remarkably, DEGs in lungs were significantly enriched in critical immune responses pathways in EV76-infected but not 201-infected mice, including antigen processing and presentation, T cell receptor signaling among others. Pathological and bacterial load analyses confirmed the rapid systemic dissemination of 201-infection and the confined EV76-infection in lungs. Our results suggest that fully virulent Y. pestis inhibits both the innate and adaptive immune responses that are substantially stimulated in a self-limited infection, which update our holistic views on the transcriptomic response to pneumonic plague.