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In JoVE (1)
Other Publications (17)
- Microbiology (Reading, England)
- Current Microbiology
- FEMS Microbiology Letters
- Journal of Clinical Microbiology
- Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy
- Applied and Environmental Microbiology
- The Journal of Infectious Diseases
- The Journal of Infectious Diseases
- Journal of Medical Microbiology
- Infection and Immunity
- FEMS Microbiology Letters
- Eukaryotic Cell
- Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology
- Journal of Medical Microbiology
- FEMS Immunology and Medical Microbiology
- Journal of Clinical Microbiology
- Methods in Molecular Biology (Clifton, N.J.)
Articles by David A. Schofield in JoVE
'Bioluminescent' Reporter Phage for the Detection of Category A Bacterial Pathogens
David A. Schofield1, Ian J. Molineux2, Caroline Westwater3
1BioSciences Division, Guild Associates, Inc., 2Department of Molecular Genetics and Microbiology, University of Texas at Austin, 3Department of Craniofacial Biology, Medical University of South Carolina
A simple method for the identification of priority bacterial pathogens is to use genetically engineered reporter phage. These reporter phage, which are specific to their particular host species, are capable of rapidly transducing a bioluminescent signal response to host cells. Herein, we describe the use of reporter phage for the detection of Yersinia pestis.
Other articles by David A. Schofield on PubMed
Microbiology (Reading, England). Apr, 2002 | Pubmed ID: 11932441
The inability to transform many clinically important Gram-negative bacteria has hampered genetic studies addressing the mechanism of bacterial pathogenesis. This report describes the development and construction of a delivery system utilizing the broad-host-range transducing bacteriophage P1. The phagemids used in this system contain a P1 pac initiation site to package the vector, a P1 lytic replicon to generate concatemeric DNA, a broad-host-range origin of replication and an antibiotic-resistance determinant to select bacterial clones containing the recircularized phagemid. Phagemid DNA was successfully introduced by infection and stably maintained in members of the families Enterobacteriaceae (Escherichia coli, Shigella flexneri, Shigella dysenteriae, Klebsiella pneumoniae and Citrobacter freundii) and Pseudomonadaceae (Pseudomonas aeruginosa). In addition to laboratory strains, these virions were used successfully to deliver phagemids to a number of strains isolated from patients. This ability to deliver genetic information to wild-type strains raises the potential for use in antimicrobial therapies and DNA vaccine development.
Tight Regulation and Modulation Via a C1-regulated Promoter in Escherichia Coli and Pseudomonas Aeruginosa
Current Microbiology. Jun, 2002 | Pubmed ID: 12000993
We describe the development and analysis of a novel promoter system regulated by the bacteriophage P1 temperature-sensitive C1 repressor. Using transcriptional fusions to the lacZ reporter gene to monitor gene expression, we show that the ratio of induction/repression can be up to 1500-fold in Escherichia coli. The promoters exhibited extremely tight repression and could be modulated over a range of temperatures. The utility of the promoter system was tested in Pseudomonas aeruginosa. C1 effectively repressed transcription; however, only modest induction was achieved. To increase the levels of induction, the amount of c1 was modulated at the mRNA level by using a LacI-regulated promoter. This resulted in a 59-fold induction in gene expression under inducing conditions. As the promoter system was constructed in a broad-host range vector and utilized the C1 repressor from a broad-host range phage, the system will provide the potential for controlled gene expression in Gram-negative bacteria.
FEMS Microbiology Letters. Oct, 2002 | Pubmed ID: 12399040
In this report we describe the development of a highly stringent and dually regulated promoter system for Shigella flexneri. Dual regulation was provided by utilizing a promoter susceptible to control by the bacteriophage P1 temperature-sensitive C1 repressor that in turn was under the transcriptional control of LacI. The level of induction/repression ratios observed was up to 3700-fold in S. flexneri. The general utility of this promoter system was evaluated by demonstrating that the bacteriophage P1 post-segregational killer protein Doc mediates a bactericidal effect in S. flexneri. This represents the first report of Doc (death on curing)-mediated killing in this Gram-negative species.
Detection of Candida Albicans MRNA from Formalin-fixed, Paraffin-embedded Mouse Tissues by Nested Reverse Transcription-PCR
Journal of Clinical Microbiology. Feb, 2003 | Pubmed ID: 12574294
Histopathology archives represent a vast source of infectious disease specimens that can be used to elucidate important disease processes. In this report, we describe a method to detect Candida albicans gene expression from infected, formalin-fixed, paraffin-embedded mouse tissue. By use of glass beads to break open the fungal cells and proteinase K treatment, RNA was extracted routinely from tissue sections that had been fixed for up to 72 h. Upon reverse transcription of the RNA and nested PCR, the procedure detected C. albicans "housekeeping" and putative virulence genes.
Use of Genetically Engineered Phage to Deliver Antimicrobial Agents to Bacteria: an Alternative Therapy for Treatment of Bacterial Infections
Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy. Apr, 2003 | Pubmed ID: 12654662
The emergence and increasing prevalence of multidrug-resistant bacterial pathogens emphasizes the need for new and innovative antimicrobial strategies. Lytic phages, which kill their host following amplification and release of progeny phage into the environment, may offer an alternative strategy for combating bacterial infections. In this study, however, we describe the use of a nonlytic phage to specifically target and deliver DNA encoding bactericidal proteins to bacteria. To test the concept of using phage as a lethal-agent delivery vehicle, we used the M13 phagemid system and the addiction toxins Gef and ChpBK. Phage delivery of lethal-agent phagemids reduced target bacterial numbers by several orders of magnitude in vitro and in a bacteremic mouse model of infection. Given the powerful genetic engineering tools available and the present knowledge in phage biology, this technology may have potential use in antimicrobial therapies and DNA vaccine development.
Development of a Thermally Regulated Broad-spectrum Promoter System for Use in Pathogenic Gram-positive Species
Applied and Environmental Microbiology. Jun, 2003 | Pubmed ID: 12788740
Selectively regulating gene expression is an essential molecular tool that is lacking for many pathogenic gram-positive bacteria. In this report, we describe the evaluation of a series of promoters regulated by the bacteriophage P1 temperature-sensitive C1 repressor in Enterococcus faecium, Enterococcus faecalis, and Staphylococcus aureus. Using the lacZ gene to monitor gene expression, we examined the strength, basal expression, and induced expression of synthetic promoters carrying C1 operator sites. The promoters exhibited extremely low basal expression and, under inducing conditions, gave high levels of expression (100- to 1,000-fold induction). We demonstrate that the promoter system could be modulated by temperature and showed rapid induction and that the mechanism of regulation occurred at the level of transcription. Controlled expression with the same constructs was also demonstrated in the gram-negative bacterium Escherichia coli. However, low basal expression and the ability to achieve derepression were dependent on both the number of mismatches in the C1 operator sites and the promoter driving c1 expression. Since the promoters were designed to contain conserved promoter elements from gram-positive species and were constructed in a broad-host-range plasmid, this system will provide a new opportunity for controlled gene expression in a variety of gram-positive bacteria.
Hydrolytic Gene Expression During Oroesophageal and Gastric Candidiasis in Immunocompetent and Immunodeficient Gnotobiotic Mice
The Journal of Infectious Diseases. Aug, 2003 | Pubmed ID: 12898449
To investigate whether host immunocompetence influences hydrolytic gene expression, we compared secretory aspartyl proteinase gene (SAP) and phospholipase B gene (PLB) expression during gastric candidiasis in immunocompetent and defined immunodeficient gnotobiotic mice, by reverse-transcription polymerase chain reaction. The use of immunodeficient gnotobiotic mice with combined defects in T cells and natural killer cells enabled a comprehensive study of virulence gene expression in various mucosal sites during lethal oroesophageal (tongue, palate, and esophagus) and gastric candidiasis. All 10 SAP and both PLB genes were expressed in both immunocompetent and specific immunodeficient mice, which suggests that the absence of important components of the host defense did not alter gene expression during gastric candidiasis. Although similar patterns of gene expression were evident in different oral tissues, we detected specific differences between Candida albicans-infected oroesophageal and gastric tissues and differences at various time points during the progression of gastric candidiasis.
Beta-defensin Expression in Immunocompetent and Immunodeficient Germ-free and Candida Albicans-monoassociated Mice
The Journal of Infectious Diseases. Oct, 2004 | Pubmed ID: 15346345
Defensins are important components of innate immunity and play a key role in the fight against infectious diseases; however, little is known about their role in resistance to fungal infection.
Divergent Chemokine, Cytokine and Beta-defensin Responses to Gastric Candidiasis in Immunocompetent C57BL/6 and BALB/c Mice
Journal of Medical Microbiology. Jan, 2005 | Pubmed ID: 15591261
Previous studies of animal models of candidiasis have produced conflicting results concerning the cytokines and host defence mechanisms that are most relevant for protection against Candida infections. In this study, the host defence mechanisms evoked by two different immunocompetent murine strains following oral colonization with Candida albicans were assessed. beta-Defensin (mBD1, mBD3 and mBD4), chemokine (MIP-2 and KC) and cytokine (TNF-alpha, IFN-gamma, IL-4, IL-10, IL-12 and IL-15) gene expression in germ-free (gf) and C. albicans-infected (gastric) C57BL/6 and BALB/c mice was contrasted. Gf C57BL/6 and BALB/c mice expressed significantly different basal levels of mBD3, mBD4, TNF-alpha and IL-12 in gastric tissues; however, gf C57BL/6 and BALB/c mice were equally susceptible to intestinal colonization with C. albicans and had similar fungal burdens in gastric tissues 4 weeks after oral challenge. C57BL/6 mice responded to colonization and gastric candidiasis with increased expression of mBD1, mBD3, mBD4, TNF-alpha, MIP-2, KC and IL-12. Conversely, a much more specific and attenuated response was observed in Candida-infected gastric tissues from BALB/c mice. Therefore, different strains of mice that were equally susceptible to gastric candidiasis after oral challenge had divergent cytokine, chemokine and beta-defensin responses. This suggests that conflicting data as to the relevance of cytokines and other host factors in murine resistance to candidiasis may be explained, at least in part, by the strain of mouse studied.
Susceptibility of Germfree Phagocyte Oxidase- and Nitric Oxide Synthase 2-deficient Mice, Defective in the Production of Reactive Metabolites of Both Oxygen and Nitrogen, to Mucosal and Systemic Candidiasis of Endogenous Origin
Infection and Immunity. Mar, 2005 | Pubmed ID: 15731028
Mice deficient for phagocyte oxidase (Phox) and nitric oxide synthase 2 (NOS2) (gp91phox-/-/NOS2-/-), defective in the production of both reactive oxygen intermediates (ROI) and reactive nitrogen intermediates (RNI), were used to investigate the role of phagocytic cells during mucosal and systemic candidiasis of endogenous origin. The alimentary tracts of germfree mice were colonized with Candida albicans wild type or each of two hyphal signaling-defective mutants (efg1/efg1 and efg1/efg1 cph1/cph1). All Candida-colonized gp91phox-/-/NOS2-/- mice were moribund within 12 to 15 days after oral inoculation. C. albicans wild-type and mutant strains colonized the alimentary tracts equally well and were able to translocate, most likely via Peyer's patches and mesenteric lymph nodes, to the internal organs and trigger the formation of abscesses; however, the wild-type and mutant strains did not survive in the abscessed murine tissues. Surprisingly, there was no significant difference in the ability of peritoneal exudate cells from gp91phox-/-/NOS2-/-, NOS2-/-, gp91phox-/-, or immunocompetent C57BL/6 mice to kill C. albicans in vitro. This suggests that anti-Candida factors other than ROI and RNI can control the growth of C. albicans and that gp91phox-/-/NOS2-/- mice die due to the inability of the host to control its inflammatory response to Candida. Correspondingly, reverse transcription-PCR analysis showed increased expression of the cytokines gamma interferon, tumor necrosis factor alpha, and the chemokines MIP-2 and KC at the site of infection, while interleukin-15 expression remained relatively unchanged between germfree and infected tissues. These studies indicate that defects in ROI and RNI enabled C. albicans to translocate and disseminate to the internal organs, resulting in an uncontrolled immune response, severe pathology, and death; however, ROI and RNI were not required for the killing of phagocytized C. albicans, indicating that other anti-Candida factors either compensate or are sufficient for the killing of phagocytized Candida.
Differential Candida Albicans Lipase Gene Expression During Alimentary Tract Colonization and Infection
FEMS Microbiology Letters. Mar, 2005 | Pubmed ID: 15766791
The human pathogenic fungus Candida albicans, which can reside as a benign commensal of the gut, possesses a large family of lipase encoding genes whose extracellular activity may be important for colonization and subsequent infection. The expression of the C. albicans lipase gene family (LIP1-10) was investigated using a mouse model of mucosal candidiasis during alimentary tract colonization (cecum contents) and orogastric infection. LIPs4-8 were expressed in nearly every sample prepared from the cecum contents and infected mucosal tissues (stomach, hard palate, esophagus and tongue) suggesting a maintenance function for these gene products. In contrast, LIPs1, 3, and 9, which were detected consistently in infected gastric tissues, were essentially undetectable in infected oral tissues. In addition, LIP2 was expressed consistently in cecum contents but was undetectable in infected oral tissues suggesting LIP2 may be important for alimentary tract colonization, but not oral infection. The host responded to a C. albicans infection by significantly increasing expression of the chemokines MIP-2 and KC at the site of infection. Therefore, differential LIP gene expression was observed during colonization, infection and at different infected mucosal sites.
Candida Albicans-conditioned Medium Protects Yeast Cells from Oxidative Stress: a Possible Link Between Quorum Sensing and Oxidative Stress Resistance
Eukaryotic Cell. Oct, 2005 | Pubmed ID: 16215173
Candida albicans, the most frequent fungal pathogen of humans, encounters high levels of oxidants following ingestion by professional phagocytes and through contact with hydrogen peroxide-producing bacteria. In this study, we provide evidence that C. albicans is able to coordinately regulate the oxidative stress response at the global cell population level by releasing protective molecules into the surrounding medium. We demonstrate that conditioned medium, which is defined as a filter-sterilized supernatant from a C. albicans stationary-phase culture, is able to protect yeast cells from both hydrogen peroxide and superoxide anion-generating agents. Exponential-phase yeast cells preexposed to conditioned medium were able to survive levels of oxidative stress that would normally kill actively growing yeast cells. Heat treatment, digestion with proteinase K, pH adjustment, or the addition of the oxidant scavenger alpha-tocopherol did not alter the ability of conditioned medium to induce a protective response. Farnesol, a heat-stable quorum-sensing molecule (QSM) that is insensitive to proteolytic enzymes and is unaffected by pH extremes, is partly responsible for this protective response. In contrast, the QSM tyrosol did not alter the sensitivity of C. albicans cells to oxidants. Relative reverse transcription-PCR analysis indicates that Candida-conditioned growth medium induces the expression of CAT1, SOD1, SOD2, and SOD4, suggesting that protection may be mediated through the transcriptional regulation of antioxidant-encoding genes. Together, these data suggest a link between the quorum-sensing molecule farnesol and the oxidative stress response in C. albicans.
Development of a Yeast Biosensor-biocatalyst for the Detection and Biodegradation of the Organophosphate Paraoxon
Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology. Oct, 2007 | Pubmed ID: 17665192
Organophosphate (OP) poisoning can occur through unintentional exposure to OP pesticides, or by the deliberate release of OP nerve agents. Consequently, there is considerable interest in the development of systems that can detect and/or biodegrade these agents. The aim of this study was to generate a prototype fluorescent reporter yeast biosensor that could detect and biodegrade the model OP pesticide, paraoxon, and subsequently detect paraoxon hydrolysis. Saccharomyces cerevisiae was engineered to hydrolyze paraoxon through the heterologous expression of the Flavobacterium species opd (organophosphate degrading) gene. Global transcription profiling was subsequently used to identify yeast genes, which were induced in the presence of paraoxon, and genes, which were associated with paraoxon hydrolysis. Paraoxon-inducible genes and genes associated with paraoxon hydrolysis were identified. Candidate paraoxon-inducible promoters were cloned and fused to the yeast-enhanced green fluorescent protein (yEGFP), and candidate promoters associated with paraoxon hydrolysis were fused to the red fluorescent protein (yDsRed). The ability of the yeast biosensor to detect paraoxon and paraoxon hydrolysis was demonstrated by the specific induction of the fluorescent reporter (yEGFP and yDsRed, respectively). Biosensors responded to paraoxon in a dose- and time-dependent manner, and detection was rapid (15 to 30 min). yDsRed induction occurred only in the recombinant opd(+) strains suggesting that yDsRed induction was strictly associated with paraoxon hydrolysis. Together, these results indicate that the yeast biocatalyst-biosensor can detect and degrade paraoxon and potentially also monitor the decontamination process.
Susceptibility of Gnotobiotic Transgenic Mice (Tgepsilon26) with Combined Deficiencies in Natural Killer Cells and T Cells to Wild-type and Hyphal Signalling-defective Mutants of Candida Albicans
Journal of Medical Microbiology. Sep, 2007 | Pubmed ID: 17761474
Germfree transgenic epsilon 26 mice (Tgepsilon26), deficient in natural killer cells and T cells, were colonized (alimentary tract) with Candida albicans wild-type or each of two hyphal transcription factor signalling mutant strains (efg1/efg1, efg1/efg1 cph1/cph1). Each Candida strain colonized the alimentary tract, infected keratinized gastric tissues to a similar extent, and induced a granulocyte-dominated inflammatory response in infected tissues. Both wild-type and mutant strains formed hyphae in vivo and were able to elicit an increase in cytokine [tumour necrosis factor alpha, interleukin (IL)-10 and IL-12] and chemokine (KC and macrophage inflammatory protein-2] mRNAs in infected tissues; however, administration of the wild-type strain was lethal for the Tgepsilon26 mice, whereas the mice colonized with the mutant strains survived. Death of the Tgepsilon26-colonized mice appeared to be due to occlusive oesophageal candidiasis, and not to disseminated candidiasis of endogenous origin. In contrast, the mutant strains exhibited a significantly reduced capacity to infect (frequency and severity) oro-oesophageal (tongue and oesophagus) tissues. Therefore, the two hyphal signalling-defective mutants were less able to infect oro-oesophageal tissues and were non-lethal, but retained their ability to colonize the alimentary tract with yeast and hyphae, infect keratinized gastric tissues, and evoke an inflammatory response in orogastric tissues.
Candida Glabrata and Candida Albicans; Dissimilar Tissue Tropism and Infectivity in a Gnotobiotic Model of Mucosal Candidiasis
FEMS Immunology and Medical Microbiology. Oct, 2007 | Pubmed ID: 17854475
Germ-free transgenic epsilon 26 (Tgepsilon26) mice, deficient in both natural killer (NK)- and T-cells, were inoculated (orally) with each of two Candida glabrata (BG2 or BG1003) or Candida albicans (CAF2-1 or SC5314) strains. Candida glabrata- or C. albicans-colonized mice exhibited similar numbers of viable Candida in the alimentary tract. Neither C. glabrata nor C. albicans caused systemic candidiasis of endogenous (alimentary tract) origin. Candida albicans invaded oroesophageal (tongue, palate, esophagus) and keratinized gastric tissues, evoked hyperkeratosis and a prominent, chronic, granulocyte-dominated, inflammatory response in all infected tissues, stimulated the production of splenic granulocytes and was lethal for the mice within 3-5 weeks after oral colonization. The two C. glabrata strains colonized the alimentary tract and penetrated into the keratinized (cardia-antrum) gastric tissues, but in contrast to C. albicans, were unable to infect oroesophageal tissues. Furthermore, C. glabrata strains were not lethal for the Tgepsilon26 mice, and did not evoke an inflammatory response in colonized gastric tissues or stimulate the production of splenic granulocytes. This 'stealth-like' behavior could explain the ability of C. glabrata to persist in infected tissues and survive as a commensal in the alimentary tract.
Journal of Clinical Microbiology. Dec, 2009 | Pubmed ID: 19828743
Yersinia pestis is the etiological agent of the plague. Because of the disease's inherent communicability, rapid clinical course, and high mortality, it is critical that an outbreak, whether it is natural or deliberate, be detected and diagnosed quickly. The objective of this research was to generate a recombinant luxAB ("light")-tagged reporter phage that can detect Y. pestis by rapidly and specifically conferring a bioluminescent signal response to these cells. The bacterial luxAB reporter genes were integrated into a noncoding region of the CDC plague-diagnostic phage phiA1122 by homologous recombination. The identity and fitness of the recombinant phage were assessed through PCR analysis and lysis assays and functionally verified by the ability to transduce a bioluminescent signal to recipient cells. The reporter phage conferred a bioluminescent phenotype to Y. pestis within 12 min of infection at 28 degrees C. The signal response time and signal strength were dependent on the number of cells present. A positive signal was obtained from 10(2) cells within 60 min. A signal response was not detectable with Escherichia coli, although a weak signal (100-fold lower than that with Y. pestis) was obtained with 1 (of 10) Yersinia enterocolitica strains and 2 (of 10) Yersinia pseudotuberculosis strains at the restrictive temperature. Importantly, serum did not prevent the ability of the reporter phage to infect Y. pestis, nor did it significantly quench the resulting bioluminescent signal. Collectively, the results indicate that the reporter phage displays promise for the rapid and specific diagnostic detection of cultivated Y. pestis isolates or infected clinical specimens.
Methods in Molecular Biology (Clifton, N.J.). 2012 | Pubmed ID: 22328390
Laser microdissection is a technique in which specific populations of cells are acquired from sections of complex tissue under direct microscopic visualization. The technique can be used to selectively harvest or ablate host and/or fungal cells from a variety of biological specimens, including human, animal, or plant tissue sections. When coupled with downstream applications such as proteomic and molecular analyses, laser microdissection can address a variety of important biological questions specifically related to the in vivo host-fungus interaction. In this chapter, we describe how laser microdissection enables researchers to selectively isolate Candida albicans cells from host-infected tissue. Detailed protocols are provided for tissue handling and processing, slide preparation, and laser capture microdissection (LCM). Using these methods, we highlight the use of LCM to examine infection-related C. albicans gene expression.