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Find video protocols related to scientific articles indexed in Pubmed.
Mutual exclusivity of hyaluronan and hyaluronidase in invasive group a streptococcus.
J. Biol. Chem.
PUBLISHED: 09-29-2014
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A recent analysis of group A Streptococcus (GAS) invasive infections in Australia has shown a predominance of M4 GAS, a serotype recently reported to lack the antiphagocytic hyaluronic acid (HA) capsule. Here, we use molecular genetics and bioinformatics techniques to characterize 17 clinical M4 isolates associated with invasive disease in children during this recent epidemiology. All M4 isolates lacked HA capsule, and whole genome sequence analysis of two isolates revealed the complete absence of the hasABC capsule biosynthesis operon. Conversely, M4 isolates possess a functional HA-degrading hyaluronate lyase (HylA) enzyme that is rendered nonfunctional in other GAS through a point mutation. Transformation with a plasmid expressing hasABC restored partial encapsulation in wild-type (WT) M4 GAS, and full encapsulation in an isogenic M4 mutant lacking HylA. However, partial encapsulation reduced binding to human complement regulatory protein C4BP, did not enhance survival in whole human blood, and did not increase virulence of WT M4 GAS in a mouse model of systemic infection. Bioinformatics analysis found no hasABC homologs in closely related species, suggesting that this operon was a recent acquisition. These data showcase a mutually exclusive interaction of HA capsule and active HylA among strains of this leading human pathogen.
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The antimicrobial peptide LL-37 facilitates the formation of neutrophil extracellular traps.
Biochem. J.
PUBLISHED: 09-03-2014
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NETs (neutrophil extracellular traps) have been described as a fundamental innate immune defence mechanism. During formation of NETs, the nuclear membrane is disrupted by an as-yet unknown mechanism. In the present study we investigated the role of human cathelicidin LL-37 in nuclear membrane disruption and formation of NETs. Immunofluorescence microscopy revealed that 5 ?M LL-37 significantly facilitated NET formation by primary human blood-derived neutrophils alone, in the presence of the classical chemical NET inducer PMA or in the presence of Staphylococcus aureus. Parallel assays with a random LL-37 fragment library indicated that the NET induction is mediated by the hydrophobic character of the peptide. The trans-localization of LL-37 towards the nucleus and the disruption of the nuclear membrane were visualized using confocal fluorescence microscopy. In conclusion, the present study demonstrates a novel role for LL-37 in the formation of NETs.
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Activation of the stress response in macrophages alters the M1/M2 balance by enhancing bacterial killing and IL-10 expression.
J. Mol. Med.
PUBLISHED: 08-28-2014
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Macrophages (M?s) play an important role in the inflammatory response during injury by participating in the removal of injurious stimuli, such as bacteria, and promoting tissue healing to restore homeostasis. M?s can acquire distinct functional phenotypes along a spectrum between two opposite stages (M1/M2) during activation. In the present study, we induced a stress response in M?s via heat shock (HS) and found that it incurred an increase in phagocytosis (1.6-fold, P?
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RAB11-mediated trafficking in host-pathogen interactions.
Nat. Rev. Microbiol.
PUBLISHED: 08-15-2014
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Many bacterial and viral pathogens block or subvert host cellular processes to promote successful infection. One host protein that is targeted by invading pathogens is the small GTPase RAB11, which functions in vesicular trafficking. RAB11 functions in conjunction with a protein complex known as the exocyst to mediate terminal steps in cargo transport via the recycling endosome to cell-cell junctions, phagosomes and cellular protrusions. These processes contribute to host innate immunity by promoting epithelial and endothelial barrier integrity, sensing and immobilizing pathogens and repairing pathogen-induced cellular damage. In this Review, we discuss the various mechanisms that pathogens have evolved to disrupt or subvert RAB11-dependent pathways as part of their infection strategy.
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Hyaluronan breakdown contributes to immune defense against group A Streptococcus.
J. Biol. Chem.
PUBLISHED: 08-13-2014
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Group A Streptococcus (GAS) commonly infects human skin and occasionally causes severe and life-threatening invasive diseases. The hyaluronan (HA) capsule of GAS has been proposed to protect GAS from host defense by mimicking endogenous HA, a large and abundant glycosaminoglycan in the skin. However, HA is degraded during tissue injury, and the functions of short-chain HA that is generated during infection have not been studied. To examine the impact of the molecular mass of HA on GAS infection, we established infection models in vitro and in vivo in which the size of HA was defined by enzymatic digestion or custom synthesis. We discovered that conversion of high molecular mass HA to low molecular mass HA facilitated GAS phagocytosis by macrophages and limited the severity of infection in mice. In contrast, native high molecular mass HA significantly impaired internalization by macrophages and increased GAS survival in murine blood. Thus, our data demonstrate that GAS virulence can be influenced by the size of HA derived from both the bacterium and host and suggest that high molecular mass HA facilitates GAS deep tissue infections, whereas the generation of short-chain HA can be protective.
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Role for streptococcal collagen-like protein 1 in M1T1 group A Streptococcus resistance to neutrophil extracellular traps.
Infect. Immun.
PUBLISHED: 07-14-2014
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Streptococcal collagen-like protein 1 (Scl-1) is one of the most highly expressed proteins in the invasive M1T1 serotype group A Streptococcus (GAS), a globally disseminated clone associated with higher risk of severe invasive infections. Previous studies using recombinant Scl-1 protein suggested a role in cell attachment and binding and inhibition of serum proteins. Here, we studied the contribution of Scl-1 to the virulence of the M1T1 clone in the physiological context of the live bacterium by generating an isogenic strain lacking the scl-1 gene. Upon subcutaneous infection in mice, wild-type bacteria induced larger lesions than the ?scl mutant. However, loss of Scl-1 did not alter bacterial adherence to or invasion of skin keratinocytes. We found instead that Scl-1 plays a critical role in GAS resistance to human and murine phagocytic cells, allowing the bacteria to persist at the site of infection. Phenotypic analyses demonstrated that Scl-1 mediates bacterial survival in neutrophil extracellular traps (NETs) and protects GAS from antimicrobial peptides found within the NETs. Additionally, Scl-1 interferes with myeloperoxidase (MPO) release, a prerequisite for NET production, thereby suppressing NET formation. We conclude that Scl-1 is a virulence determinant in the M1T1 GAS clone, allowing GAS to subvert innate immune functions that are critical in clearing bacterial infections.
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The interplay between Siglecs and sialylated pathogens.
Glycobiology
PUBLISHED: 07-04-2014
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Siglecs are mammalian sialic acid (Sia) recognizing immunoglobulin-like receptors expressed across the major leukocyte lineages, and function to recognize ubiquitous Sia epitopes on cell surface glycoconjugates and regulate immunological and inflammatory activities of these cells. A large subset referred to as CD33-related Siglecs are inhibitory receptors that limit leukocyte activation, and recent research has shown that the pathogen group B Streptococcus (GBS) binds to these Siglecs in Sia- and protein-dependent fashion to downregulate leukocyte bactericidal capacity. Conversely, sialoadhesin is a macrophage phagocytic receptor that engages GBS and other sialylated pathogens to promote effective phagocytosis and antigen presentation for the adaptive immune response. A variety of other important Siglec interactions with bacterial, viral and protozoan pathogens are beginning to be recognized. Siglec genes and binding specificities are rapidly evolving among primates, with key extant polymorphisms in human populations that may influence susceptibility to infection-associated disorders including chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and premature birth. This review summarizes current understanding of interactions between pathogens and Siglecs, a field of investigation that is likely to continue expanding in scope and medical importance.
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HIF Transcription Factors, Inflammation, and Immunity.
Immunity
PUBLISHED: 07-02-2014
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The hypoxic response in cells and tissues is mediated by the family of hypoxia-inducible factor (HIF) transcription factors; these play an integral role in the metabolic changes that drive cellular adaptation to low oxygen availability. HIF expression and stabilization in immune cells can be triggered by hypoxia, but also by other factors associated with pathological stress: e.g., inflammation, infectious microorganisms, and cancer. HIF induces a number of aspects of host immune function, from boosting phagocyte microbicidal capacity to driving T cell differentiation and cytotoxic activity. Cellular metabolism is emerging as a key regulator of immunity, and it constitutes another layer of fine-tuned immune control by HIF that can dictate myeloid cell and lymphocyte development, fate, and function. Here we discuss how oxygen sensing in the immune microenvironment shapes immunological response and examine how HIF and the hypoxia pathway control innate and adaptive immunity.
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Hypoxia-Inducible Factor (HIF) as a Pharmacological Target for Prevention and Treatment of Infectious Diseases.
Infect Dis Ther
PUBLISHED: 06-24-2014
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In the present era of ever-increasing antibiotic resistance and increasingly complex and immunosuppressed patient populations, physicians and scientists are seeking novel approaches to battle difficult infectious disease conditions. Development of a serious infection implies a failure of innate immune capabilities in the patient, and one may consider whether pharmacological strategies exist to correct and enhance innate immune cell function. Hypoxia-inducible factor-1 (HIF-1), the central regulator of the cellular response to hypoxic stress, has recently been recognized to control the activation state and key microbicidal functions of immune cells. HIF-1 boosting drugs are in clinical development for anemia and other indications, and could be repositioned as infectious disease therapeutics. With equal attention to opportunities and complexities, we review our current understanding of HIF-1 regulation of microbial host-pathogen interactions with an eye toward future drug development.
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Subterfuge and sabotage: evasion of host innate defenses by invasive gram-positive bacterial pathogens.
Annu. Rev. Microbiol.
PUBLISHED: 06-18-2014
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The development of a severe invasive bacterial infection in an otherwise healthy individual is one of the most striking and fascinating aspects of human medicine. A small cadre of gram-positive pathogens of the genera Streptococcus and Staphylococcus stand out for their unique invasive disease potential and sophisticated ability to counteract the multifaceted components of human innate defense. This review illustrates how these leading human disease agents evade host complement deposition and activation, impede phagocyte recruitment and activation, resist the microbicidal activities of host antimicrobial peptides and reactive oxygen species, escape neutrophil extracellular traps, and promote and accelerate phagocyte cell death through the action of pore-forming cytolysins. Understanding the molecular basis of bacterial innate immune resistance can open new avenues for therapeutic intervention geared to disabling specific virulence factors and resensitizing the pathogen to host innate immune clearance.
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Siglec-5 and Siglec-14 are polymorphic paired receptors that modulate neutrophil and amnion signaling responses to group B Streptococcus.
J. Exp. Med.
PUBLISHED: 05-05-2014
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Group B Streptococcus (GBS) causes invasive infections in human newborns. We recently showed that the GBS ?-protein attenuates innate immune responses by binding to sialic acid-binding immunoglobulin-like lectin 5 (Siglec-5), an inhibitory receptor on phagocytes. Interestingly, neutrophils and monocytes also express Siglec-14, which has a ligand-binding domain almost identical to Siglec-5 but signals via an activating motif, raising the possibility that these are paired Siglec receptors that balance immune responses to pathogens. Here we show that ?-protein-expressing GBS binds to both Siglec-5 and Siglec-14 on neutrophils and that the latter engagement counteracts pathogen-induced host immune suppression by activating p38 mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) and AKT signaling pathways. Siglec-14 is absent from some humans because of a SIGLEC14-null polymorphism, and homozygous SIGLEC14-null neutrophils are more susceptible to GBS immune subversion. Finally, we report an unexpected human-specific expression of Siglec-5 and Siglec-14 on amniotic epithelium, the site of initial contact of invading GBS with the fetus. GBS amnion immune activation was likewise influenced by the SIGLEC14-null polymorphism. We provide initial evidence that the polymorphism could influence the risk of prematurity among human fetuses of mothers colonized with GBS. This first functionally proven example of a paired receptor system in the Siglec family has multiple implications for regulation of host immunity.
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Singly modified amikacin and tobramycin derivatives show increased rRNA A-site binding and higher potency against resistant bacteria.
ChemMedChem
PUBLISHED: 05-03-2014
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Semisynthetic derivatives of the clinically useful aminoglycosides tobramycin and amikacin were prepared by selectively modifying their 6'' positions with a variety of hydrogen bond donors and acceptors. Their binding to the rRNA A-site was probed using an in vitro FRET-based assay, and their antibacterial activities against several resistant strains (e.g., Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Klebsiella pneumonia, MRSA) were quantified by determining minimum inhibitory concentrations (MICs). The most potent derivatives were evaluated for their eukaryotic cytotoxicity. Most analogues displayed higher affinity for the bacterial A-site than the parent compounds. Although most tobramycin analogues exhibited no improvement in antibacterial activity, several amikacin analogues showed potent and broad-spectrum antibacterial activity against resistant bacteria. Derivatives tested for eukaryotic cytotoxicity exhibited minimal toxicity, similar to the parent compounds.
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Disease manifestations and pathogenic mechanisms of group a Streptococcus.
Clin. Microbiol. Rev.
PUBLISHED: 04-04-2014
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Streptococcus pyogenes, also known as group A Streptococcus (GAS), causes mild human infections such as pharyngitis and impetigo and serious infections such as necrotizing fasciitis and streptococcal toxic shock syndrome. Furthermore, repeated GAS infections may trigger autoimmune diseases, including acute poststreptococcal glomerulonephritis, acute rheumatic fever, and rheumatic heart disease. Combined, these diseases account for over half a million deaths per year globally. Genomic and molecular analyses have now characterized a large number of GAS virulence determinants, many of which exhibit overlap and redundancy in the processes of adhesion and colonization, innate immune resistance, and the capacity to facilitate tissue barrier degradation and spread within the human host. This improved understanding of the contribution of individual virulence determinants to the disease process has led to the formulation of models of GAS disease progression, which may lead to better treatment and intervention strategies. While GAS remains sensitive to all penicillins and cephalosporins, rising resistance to other antibiotics used in disease treatment is an increasing worldwide concern. Several GAS vaccine formulations that elicit protective immunity in animal models have shown promise in nonhuman primate and early-stage human trials. The development of a safe and efficacious commercial human vaccine for the prophylaxis of GAS disease remains a high priority.
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The classical lancefield antigen of group a Streptococcus is a virulence determinant with implications for vaccine design.
Cell Host Microbe
PUBLISHED: 03-26-2014
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Group A Streptococcus (GAS) is a leading cause of infection-related mortality in humans. All GAS serotypes express the Lancefield group A carbohydrate (GAC), comprising a polyrhamnose backbone with an immunodominant N-acetylglucosamine (GlcNAc) side chain, which is the basis of rapid diagnostic tests. No biological function has been attributed to this conserved antigen. Here we identify and characterize the GAC biosynthesis genes, gacA through gacL. An isogenic mutant of the glycosyltransferase gacI, which is defective for GlcNAc side-chain addition, is attenuated for virulence in two infection models, in association with increased sensitivity to neutrophil killing, platelet-derived antimicrobials in serum, and the cathelicidin antimicrobial peptide LL-37. Antibodies to GAC lacking the GlcNAc side chain and containing only polyrhamnose promoted opsonophagocytic killing of multiple GAS serotypes and protected against systemic GAS challenge after passive immunization. Thus, the Lancefield antigen plays a functional role in GAS pathogenesis, and a deeper understanding of this unique polysaccharide has implications for vaccine development.
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Dynamic regulation of FGF23 by Fam20C phosphorylation, GalNAc-T3 glycosylation, and furin proteolysis.
Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U.S.A.
PUBLISHED: 03-26-2014
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The family with sequence similarity 20, member C (Fam20C) has recently been identified as the Golgi casein kinase. Fam20C phosphorylates secreted proteins on Ser-x-Glu/pSer motifs and loss-of-function mutations in the kinase cause Raine syndrome, an often-fatal osteosclerotic bone dysplasia. Fam20C is potentially an upstream regulator of the phosphate-regulating hormone fibroblast growth factor 23 (FGF23), because humans with FAM20C mutations and Fam20C KO mice develop hypophosphatemia due to an increase in full-length, biologically active FGF23. However, the mechanism by which Fam20C regulates FGF23 is unknown. Here we show that Fam20C directly phosphorylates FGF23 on Ser(180), within the FGF23 R(176)XXR(179)/S(180)AE subtilisin-like proprotein convertase motif. This phosphorylation event inhibits O-glycosylation of FGF23 by polypeptide N-acetylgalactosaminyltransferase 3 (GalNAc-T3), and promotes FGF23 cleavage and inactivation by the subtilisin-like proprotein convertase furin. Collectively, our results provide a molecular mechanism by which FGF23 is dynamically regulated by phosphorylation, glycosylation, and proteolysis. Furthermore, our findings suggest that cross-talk between phosphorylation and O-glycosylation of proteins in the secretory pathway may be an important mechanism by which secreted proteins are regulated.
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Antimicrobial Salvage Therapy for Persistent Staphylococcal Bacteremia Using Daptomycin Plus Ceftaroline.
Clin Ther
PUBLISHED: 03-20-2014
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Guidelines recommend daptomycin combination therapy as an option for methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) bacteremia after vancomycin failure. Recent data suggest that combining daptomycin with a ?-lactam may have unique benefits; however, there are very limited clinical data regarding the use of ceftaroline with daptomycin.
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Human cathelicidin LL-37 resistance and increased daptomycin MIC in methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus strain USA600 (ST45) are associated with increased mortality in a hospital setting.
J. Clin. Microbiol.
PUBLISHED: 03-19-2014
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Bacteremia caused by methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) USA600 has been associated with increased patient mortality. We found that USA600 MRSA exhibited significantly increased resistance to human cathelicidin LL-37 killing and daptomycin MIC creep compared to non-USA600 MRSA. Virulent health care-associated MRSA strains may coevolve innate host defense peptide and antibiotic resistances.
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Phenol soluble modulin (PSM) variants of community-associated methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) captured using mass spectrometry-based molecular networking.
Mol. Cell Proteomics
PUBLISHED: 02-24-2014
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Molecular genetic analysis indicates that the problematic human bacterial pathogen methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus possesses more than 2000 open reading frames in its genome. This number of potential gene products, coupled with intrinsic mechanisms of posttranslational modification, endows methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus with a highly complex biochemical repertoire. Recent proteomic and metabolomic advances have provided methodologies to better understand and characterize the biosynthetic factors released by microbial organisms. Here, the emerging tool of mass spectrometry-based molecular networking was used to visualize and map the repertoire of biosynthetic factors produced by a community-associated methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus strain representative of the epidemic USA300 clone. In particular, the study focused on elucidating the complexity of the recently discovered phenol soluble modulin family of peptides when placed under various antibiotic treatment stresses. Novel PSM truncated variant peptides were captured, and the type of variants that were clustered by the molecular networks platform changed in response to the different antibiotic treatment conditions. After discovery, a group of the peptides were selected for functional analysis in vitro. The peptides displayed bioactive properties including the ability to induce proinflammatory responses in human THP-1 monocytes. Additionally, the tested peptides did not display antimicrobial activity as previously reported for other phenol soluble modulin truncated variants. Our findings reveal that the PSM family of peptides are quite structurally diverse, and suggest a single phenol soluble modulin parent peptide can functionally spawn differential bioactivities in response to various external stimuli.
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Novel Role of the Antimicrobial Peptide LL-37 in the Protection of Neutrophil Extracellular Traps against Degradation by Bacterial Nucleases.
J Innate Immun
PUBLISHED: 02-21-2014
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Neutrophil extracellular traps (NETs) have been described as a fundamental innate immune defence mechanism. They consist of a nuclear DNA backbone associated with different antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) which are able to engulf and kill pathogens. The AMP LL-37, a member of the cathelicidin family, is highly present in NETs. However, the function of LL-37 within NETs is still unknown because it loses its antimicrobial activity when bound to DNA in the NETs. Using immunofluorescence microscopy, we demonstrate that NETs treated with LL-37 are distinctly more resistant to S. aureus nuclease degradation than nontreated NETs. Biochemical assays utilising a random LL-37-fragment library indicated that the blocking effect of LL-37 on nuclease activity is based on the cationic character of the AMP, which facilitates the binding to neutrophil DNA, thus protecting it from degradation by the nuclease. In good correlation to these data, the cationic AMPs human beta defensin-3 and human neutrophil peptide-1 showed similar protection of neutrophil-derived DNA against nuclease degradation. In conclusion, this study demonstrates a novel role of AMPs in host immune defence: beside its direct antimicrobial activity against various pathogens, cationic AMPs can stabilise neutrophil-derived DNA or NETs against bacterial nuclease degradation. © 2014 S. Karger AG, Basel.
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Anthracimycin activity against contemporary methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus.
J. Antibiot.
PUBLISHED: 02-18-2014
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Anthracimycin is a recently discovered novel marine-derived compound with activity against Bacillus anthracis. We tested anthracimycin against an expanded panel of Staphylococcus aureus strains in vitro and in vivo. All strains of S. aureus tested, including methicillin-susceptible, methicillin-resistant (MRSA) and vancomycin-resistant strains of S. aureus, were susceptible to anthracimycin at MIC values of ?0.25?mg?l(-1). Although its postantibiotic effects were minimal, anthracimycin exhibited potent and rapid bactericidal activity, with a >4-log kill of USA300 MRSA within 3?h at five times its MIC. At concentrations significantly below the MIC, anthracimycin slowed MRSA growth and potentiated the bactericidal activity of the human cathelicidin, LL-37. The bactericidal activity of anthracimycin was somewhat mitigated in the presence of 20% human serum, and the compound was minimally toxic to human cells, with an IC50 (inhibitory concentration 50)=70?mg?l(-1) against human carcinoma cells. At concentrations near the MIC, anthracimycin inhibited S. aureus nucleic acid synthesis as determined by optimized macromolecular synthesis methodology, with inhibition of DNA and RNA synthesis occurring in the absence of DNA intercalation. Anthracimycin at a single dose of 1 or 10?mg?kg(-1) was able to protect mice from MRSA-induced mortality in a murine peritonitis model of infection. Anthracimycin provides an interesting new scaffold for future development of a novel MRSA antibiotic.
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Role of macrophage sialoadhesin in host defense against the sialylated pathogen group B Streptococcus.
J. Mol. Med.
PUBLISHED: 02-12-2014
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Several bacterial pathogens decorate their surfaces with sialic acid (Sia) residues within cell wall components or capsular exopolysaccharides. Sialic acid expression can promote bacterial virulence by blocking complement activation or by engagement of inhibitory sialic acid-binding immunoglobulin-like lectins (Siglecs) on host leukocytes. Expressed at high levels on splenic and lymph node macrophages, sialoadhesin (Sn) is a unique Siglec with an elongated structure that lacks intracellular signaling motifs. Sialoadhesin allows macrophage to engage certain sialylated pathogens and stimulate inflammatory responses, but the in vivo significance of sialoadhesin in infection has not been shown. We demonstrate that macrophages phagocytose the sialylated pathogen group B Streptococcus (GBS) and increase bactericidal activity via sialoadhesin-sialic-acid-mediated recognition. Sialoadhesin expression on marginal zone metallophilic macrophages in the spleen trapped circulating GBS and restricted the spread of the GBS to distant organs, reducing mortality. Specific IgM antibody responses to GBS challenge were also impaired in sialoadhesin-deficient mice. Thus, sialoadhesin represents a key bridge to orchestrate innate and adaptive immune defenses against invasive sialylated bacterial pathogens.
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Marinopyrrole derivatives as potential antibiotic agents against methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (III).
Mar Drugs
PUBLISHED: 02-10-2014
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The marine natural product, marinopyrrole A (1), was previously shown to have significant antibiotic activity against Gram-positive pathogens, including methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA). Although compound (1) exhibits a significant reduction in MRSA activity in the presence of human serum, we have identified key modifications that partially restore activity. We previously reported our discovery of a chloro-derivative of marinopyrrole A (1a) featuring a 2-4 fold improved minimum inhibitory concentration (MIC) against MRSA, significantly less susceptibility to serum inhibition and rapid and concentration-dependent killing of MRSA. Here, we report a novel fluoro-derivative of marinopyrrole A (1e) showing an improved profile of potency, less susceptibility to serum inhibition, as well as rapid and concentration-dependent killing of MRSA.
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Group B Streptococcus ?-hemolysin/cytolysin breaches maternal-fetal barriers to cause preterm birth and intrauterine fetal demise in vivo.
J. Infect. Dis.
PUBLISHED: 01-28-2014
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Maternal vaginal colonization with Streptococcus agalactiae (Group B Streptococcus [GBS]) is a precursor to chorioamnionitis, fetal infection, and neonatal sepsis, but the understanding of specific factors in the pathogenesis of ascending infection remains limited.
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A Staphylococcus aureus TIR domain protein virulence factor blocks TLR2-mediated NF-?B signaling.
J Innate Immun
PUBLISHED: 01-25-2014
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Signaling through Toll-like receptors (TLRs), crucial molecules in the induction of host defense responses, requires adaptor proteins that contain a Toll/interleukin-1 receptor (TIR) domain. The pathogen Staphylococcus aureus produces several innate immune-evasion molecules that interfere with the host's innate immune response. A database search analysis suggested the presence of a gene encoding a homologue of the human TIR domain in S. aureus MSSA476 which was named staphylococcal TIR domain protein (TirS). Ectopic expression of TirS in human embryonic kidney, macrophage and keratinocyte cell lines interfered with signaling through TLR2, including MyD88 and TIRAP, NF-?B and/or mitogen-activated protein kinase pathways. Moreover, the presence of TirS reduced the levels of cytokines MCP-1 and G-CSF secreted in response to S. aureus. The effects on NF-?B pathway were confirmed using S. aureus MSSA476 wild type, an isogenic mutant MSSA476?tirS, and complemented MSSA476?tirS +pTirS in a Transwell system where bacteria and host cells were physically separated. Finally, in a systematic mouse infection model, TirS promoted bacterial accumulation in several organs 4 days postinfection. The results of this study reveal a new S. aureus virulence factor that can interfere with PAMP-induced innate immune signaling in vitro and bacterial survival in vivo.
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Direct cloning and refactoring of a silent lipopeptide biosynthetic gene cluster yields the antibiotic taromycin A.
Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U.S.A.
PUBLISHED: 01-21-2014
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Recent developments in next-generation sequencing technologies have brought recognition of microbial genomes as a rich resource for novel natural product discovery. However, owing to the scarcity of efficient procedures to connect genes to molecules, only a small fraction of secondary metabolomes have been investigated to date. Transformation-associated recombination (TAR) cloning takes advantage of the natural in vivo homologous recombination of Saccharomyces cerevisiae to directly capture large genomic loci. Here we report a TAR-based genetic platform that allows us to directly clone, refactor, and heterologously express a silent biosynthetic pathway to yield a new antibiotic. With this method, which involves regulatory gene remodeling, we successfully expressed a 67-kb nonribosomal peptide synthetase biosynthetic gene cluster from the marine actinomycete Saccharomonospora sp. CNQ-490 and produced the dichlorinated lipopeptide antibiotic taromycin A in the model expression host Streptomyces coelicolor. The taromycin gene cluster (tar) is highly similar to the clinically approved antibiotic daptomycin from Streptomyces roseosporus, but has notable structural differences in three amino acid residues and the lipid side chain. With the activation of the tar gene cluster and production of taromycin A, this study highlights a unique "plug-and-play" approach to efficiently gaining access to orphan pathways that may open avenues for novel natural product discoveries and drug development.
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Positive regulation of TRAF6-dependent innate immune responses by protein phosphatase PP1-?.
PLoS ONE
PUBLISHED: 01-01-2014
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Innate immune sensors such as Toll-like receptors (TLRs) differentially utilize adaptor proteins and additional molecular mediators to ensure robust and precise immune responses to pathogen challenge. Through a gain-of-function genetic screen, we identified the gamma catalytic subunit of protein phosphatase 1 (PP1-?) as a positive regulator of MyD88-dependent proinflammatory innate immune activation. PP1-? physically interacts with the E3 ubiquitin ligase TRAF6, and enhances the activity of TRAF6 towards itself and substrates such as IKK?, whereas enzymatically inactive PP1-? represses these events. Importantly, these activities were found to be critical for cellular innate responses to pathogen challenge and microbial clearance in both mouse macrophages and human monocyte lines. These data indicate that PP1-? phosphatase activity regulates overall TRAF6 E3 ubiquitin ligase function and promotes NF-?B-mediated innate signaling responses.
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Transcription factor binding site analysis identifies FOXO transcription factors as regulators of the cutaneous wound healing process.
PLoS ONE
PUBLISHED: 01-01-2014
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The search for significantly overrepresented and co-occurring transcription factor binding sites in the promoter regions of the most differentially expressed genes in microarray data sets could be a powerful approach for finding key regulators of complex biological processes. To test this concept, two previously published independent data sets on wounded human epidermis were re-analyzed. The presence of co-occurring transcription factor binding sites for FOXO1, FOXO3 and FOXO4 in the majority of the promoter regions of the most significantly differentially expressed genes between non-wounded and wounded epidermis implied an important role for FOXO transcription factors during wound healing. Expression levels of FOXO transcription factors during wound healing in vivo in both human and mouse skin were analyzed and a decrease for all FOXOs in human wounded skin was observed, with FOXO3 having the highest expression level in non wounded skin. Impaired re-epithelialization was found in cultures of primary human keratinocytes expressing a constitutively active variant of FOXO3. Conversely knockdown of FOXO3 in keratinocytes had the opposite effect and in an in vivo mouse model with FOXO3 knockout mice we detected significantly accelerated wound healing. This article illustrates that the proposed approach is a viable method for identifying important regulators of complex biological processes using in vivo samples. FOXO3 has not previously been implicated as an important regulator of wound healing and its exact function in this process calls for further investigation.
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Group B Streptococcus engages an inhibitory Siglec through sialic acid mimicry to blunt innate immune and inflammatory responses in vivo.
PLoS Pathog.
PUBLISHED: 01-01-2014
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Group B Streptococcus (GBS) is a common agent of bacterial sepsis and meningitis in newborns. The GBS surface capsule contains sialic acids (Sia) that engage Sia-binding immunoglobulin-like lectins (Siglecs) on leukocytes. Here we use mice lacking Siglec-E, an inhibitory Siglec of myelomonocytic cells, to study the significance of GBS Siglec engagement during in vivo infection. We found GBS bound to Siglec-E in a Sia-specific fashion to blunt NF-?B and MAPK activation. As a consequence, Siglec-E-deficient macrophages had enhanced pro-inflammatory cytokine secretion, phagocytosis and bactericidal activity against the pathogen. Following pulmonary or low-dose intravenous GBS challenge, Siglec-E KO mice produced more pro-inflammatory cytokines and exhibited reduced GBS invasion of the central nervous system. In contrast, upon high dose lethal challenges, cytokine storm in Siglec-E KO mice was associated with accelerated mortality. We conclude that GBS Sia mimicry influences host innate immune and inflammatory responses in vivo through engagement of an inhibitory Siglec, with the ultimate outcome of the host response varying depending upon the site, stage and magnitude of infection.
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Ceftaroline Restores Daptomycin Activity Against Daptomycin Nonsusceptible Vancomycin Resistant Enterococcus faecium.
Antimicrob. Agents Chemother.
PUBLISHED: 12-23-2013
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Background: Daptomycin-nonsusceptible, vancomycin-resistant Enterococcus faecium (VRE) are a formidable emerging threat to patients with comorbidities, leaving few therapeutic options in cases of severe invasive infections.Methods: Using a previously characterized isogenic pair of VRE from the same patient differing in their daptomycin susceptibility (Etest MICs 0.38 mg/L and 10 mg/L), we examined the effect of ceftaroline, ceftriaxone, and ampicillin on membrane fluidity and susceptibility of VRE to surface binding and killing by daptomycin and human cathelicidin antimicrobial peptide LL37.Results: Synergy was noted in vitro between daptomycin and ampicillin and ceftaroline for daptomycin-susceptible VRE strain but only ceftaroline showed synergy against the daptomycin-nonsusceptible VRE strain (? 2 log10 CFU reduction at 24 hours). Ceftaroline co-treatment increased daptomycin surface binding with an associated increase in membrane fluidity and an increase in the net negative surface charge of the bacteria as evidenced by increased poly-L-lysine binding. Consistent with the observed biophysical changes, ceftaroline resulted in increased binding and killing of daptomycin-nonsusceptible VRE by human cathelicidin LL37.Conclusions: Using a pair of daptomycin susceptible/nonsusceptible pair of VRE, we noted that VRE is ceftaroline resistant, yet ceftaroline confers significant effects on growth rate as well as biophysical changes on the cell surface of VRE that can potentiate the activity of daptomycin and innate cationic host defense peptides such as cathelicidin. Although limited to just 2 strains, these finding suggest that additional in vivo and in vitro studies need to be done to explore the possibility of using ceftaroline as adjunctive anti-VRE therapy.
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A novel role for the yceGH tellurite resistance genes in the pathogenesis of Bacillus anthracis.
Infect. Immun.
PUBLISHED: 12-23-2013
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Bacillus anthracis, the causative agent of anthrax, relies on multiple virulence factors to subvert the host immune defense. Using Caenorhabditis elegans as an infection model, we screened approximately 5,000 transposon mutants of B. anthracis Sterne for decreased virulence. One of the attenuated mutants resulted in loss of expression of yceG and yceH, the last two genes in a six-gene cluster of tellurite resistance genes. We generated an analogous insertional mutant to confirm the phenotype and characterize the role of yceGH in resistance to host defenses. Loss of yceGH rendered the mutants more sensitive to tellurite toxicity as well as to host defenses such as reactive oxygen species and the cathelicidin family of antimicrobial peptides. Additionally, we see decreased survival in mammalian models of infection including human whole blood and in mice. We identify a novel role for the yceGH genes in B. anthracis Sterne virulence and suggest that C. elegans is a useful infection model to study anthrax pathogenesis.
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The fibrinogen-binding M1 protein reduces pharyngeal cell adherence and colonization phenotypes of M1T1 Group A Streptococcus.
J. Biol. Chem.
PUBLISHED: 12-19-2013
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Group A Streptococcus (GAS) is a leading human pathogen producing a diverse array of infections from simple pharyngitis (strep throat) to invasive conditions including necrotizing fasciitis and toxic shock syndrome. The surface-anchored GAS M1 protein is a classical virulence factor that promotes phagocyte resistance and exaggerated inflammation by binding host fibrinogen (Fg) to form supramolecular networks. In this study we used a virulent WT M1T1 GAS strain and its isogenic M1-deficient mutant to examine the role of M1 Fg binding on a proximal step in GAS infection - interaction with pharyngeal epithelium. Expression of M1 protein reduced GAS adherence to human pharyngeal keratinocytes by two-fold, and this difference was increased to four-fold in the presence of Fg. In stationary phase, surface M1 protein cleavage by the GAS cysteine protease SpeB eliminated Fg binding and relieved its inhibitory effect on GAS pharyngeal adherence. In a mouse model of GAS colonization of nasal-associated lymphoid tissue, M1 protein expression was associated with an average 6-fold decreased GAS recovery in isogenic strain competition assays. Thus, GAS M1 protein Fg binding reduces GAS pharyngeal cell adherence and colonization in a fashion that is counterbalanced by SpeB. Inactivation of SpeB during the shift to GAS invasive disease allows M1 Fg binding, increasing pathogen phagocyte resistance and proinflammatory activities.
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Rapid evolution of binding specificities and expression patterns of inhibitory CD33-related Siglecs in primates.
FASEB J.
PUBLISHED: 12-05-2013
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Siglecs are sialic acid-binding Ig-like lectins that recognize sialoglycans via amino-terminal V-set domains. CD33-related Siglecs (CD33rSiglecs) on innate immune cells recognize endogenous sialoglycans as "self-associated molecular patterns" (SAMPs), dampening immune responses via cytosolic immunoreceptor tyrosine-based inhibition motifs that recruit tyrosine phosphatases. However, sialic acid-expressing pathogens subvert this mechanism through molecular mimicry. Meanwhile, endogenous host SAMPs must continually evolve to evade other pathogens that exploit sialic acids as invasion targets. We hypothesized that these opposing selection forces have accelerated CD33rSiglec evolution. We address this by comparative analysis of major CD33rSiglec (Siglec-3, Siglec-5, and Siglec-9) orthologs in humans, chimpanzees, and baboons. Recombinant soluble molecules displaying ligand-binding domains show marked quantitative and qualitative interspecies differences in interactions with strains of the sialylated pathogen, group B Streptococcus, and with sialoglycans presented as gangliosides or in the form of sialoglycan microarrays, including variations such as N-glycolyl and O-acetyl groups. Primate Siglecs also show quantitative and qualitative intra- and interspecies variations in expression patterns on leukocytes, both in circulation and in tissues. Taken together our data explain why the CD33rSiglec-encoding gene cluster is undergoing rapid evolution via multiple mechanisms, driven by the need to maintain self-recognition by innate immune cells, while escaping 2 distinct mechanisms of pathogen subversion.-Vered-Karavani, P., Hurtado-Ziola, N., Chang, Y.-C., Sonnenburg, J. L., Ronaghy, A., Yu, H., Verhagen, A., Nizet, V., Chen, X., Varki, N., Varki, A., Angata, T. Rapid evolution of binding specificities and expression patterns of inhibitory CD33-related Siglecs in primates.
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Inducing host protection in pneumococcal sepsis by preactivation of the Ashwell-Morell receptor.
Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U.S.A.
PUBLISHED: 11-27-2013
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The endocytic Ashwell-Morell receptor (AMR) of hepatocytes detects pathogen remodeling of host glycoproteins by neuraminidase in the bloodstream and mitigates the lethal coagulopathy of sepsis. We have investigated the mechanism of host protection by the AMR during the onset of sepsis and in response to the desialylation of blood glycoproteins by the NanA neuraminidase of Streptococcus pneumoniae. We find that the AMR selects among potential glycoprotein ligands unmasked by microbial neuraminidase activity in pneumococcal sepsis to eliminate from blood circulation host factors that contribute to coagulation and thrombosis. This protection is attributable in large part to the rapid induction of a moderate thrombocytopenia by the AMR. We further show that neuraminidase activity in the blood can be manipulated to induce the clearance of AMR ligands including platelets, thereby preactivating a protective response in pneumococcal sepsis that moderates the severity of disseminated intravascular coagulation and enables host survival.
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Participatory medicine: A home score for streptococcal pharyngitis enabled by real-time biosurveillance: a cohort study.
Ann. Intern. Med.
PUBLISHED: 11-06-2013
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Consensus guidelines recommend against testing or treating adults at low risk for group A streptococcal (GAS) pharyngitis.
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Glycogenomics as a mass spectrometry-guided genome-mining method for microbial glycosylated molecules.
Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U.S.A.
PUBLISHED: 11-04-2013
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Glycosyl groups are an essential mediator of molecular interactions in cells and on cellular surfaces. There are very few methods that directly relate sugar-containing molecules to their biosynthetic machineries. Here, we introduce glycogenomics as an experiment-guided genome-mining approach for fast characterization of glycosylated natural products (GNPs) and their biosynthetic pathways from genome-sequenced microbes by targeting glycosyl groups in microbial metabolomes. Microbial GNPs consist of aglycone and glycosyl structure groups in which the sugar unit(s) are often critical for the GNPs bioactivity, e.g., by promoting binding to a target biomolecule. GNPs are a structurally diverse class of molecules with important pharmaceutical and agrochemical applications. Herein, O- and N-glycosyl groups are characterized in their sugar monomers by tandem mass spectrometry (MS) and matched to corresponding glycosylation genes in secondary metabolic pathways by a MS-glycogenetic code. The associated aglycone biosynthetic genes of the GNP genotype then classify the natural product to further guide structure elucidation. We highlight the glycogenomic strategy by the characterization of several bioactive glycosylated molecules and their gene clusters, including the anticancer agent cinerubin B from Streptomyces sp. SPB74 and an antibiotic, arenimycin B, from Salinispora arenicola CNB-527.
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HIF isoforms in the skin differentially regulate systemic arterial pressure.
Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U.S.A.
PUBLISHED: 10-07-2013
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Vascular flow through tissues is regulated via a number of homeostatic mechanisms. Localized control of tissue blood flow, or autoregulation, is a key factor in regulating tissue perfusion and oxygenation. We show here that the net balance between two hypoxia-inducible factor (HIF) transcription factor isoforms, HIF-1? and HIF-2?, is an essential mechanism regulating both local and systemic blood flow in the skin of mice. We also show that balance of HIF isoforms in keratinocyte-specific mutant mice affects thermal adaptation, exercise capacity, and systemic arterial pressure. The two primary HIF isoforms achieve these effects in opposing ways that are associated with HIF isoform regulation of nitric oxide production. We also show that a correlation exists between altered levels of HIF isoforms in the skin and the degree of idiopathic hypertension in human subjects. Thus, the balance between HIF-1? and HIF-2? expression in keratinocytes is a control element of both tissue perfusion and systemic arterial pressure, with potential implications in human hypertension.
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Human Milk Oligosaccharides Protect Bladder Epithelial Cells Against Uropathogenic Escherichia coli Invasion and Cytotoxicity.
J. Infect. Dis.
PUBLISHED: 08-29-2013
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The invasive pathogen uropathogenic Escherichia coli (UPEC) is the primary cause of urinary tract infections (UTIs). Recurrent infection that can progress to life-threatening renal failure has remained as a serious global health concern in infants. UPEC adheres to and invades bladder epithelial cells to establish infection. Studies have detected the presence of human milk oligosaccharides (HMOs) in urine of breast-fed, but not formula-fed, neonates. We investigated the mechanisms HMOs deploy to elicit protection in human bladder epithelial cells infected with UPEC CFT073, a prototypic urosepsis-associated strain. We found a significant reduction in UPEC internalization into HMO-pretreated epithelial cells without observing any significant effect in UPEC binding to these cells. This event coincides with a rapid decrease in host cell cytotoxicity, recognized by LIVE/DEAD staining and cell detachment, but independent of caspase-mediated or mitochondrial-mediated programmed cell death pathways. Further investigation revealed HMOs, and particularly the sialic acid-containing fraction, reduced UPEC-mediated MAPK and NF-?B activation. Collectively, our results indicate that HMOs can protect bladder epithelial cells from deleterious cytotoxic and proinflammatory effects of UPEC infection, and may be one contributing mechanism underlying the epidemiological evidence of reduced UTI incidence in breast-fed infants.
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Nafcillin enhances innate immune-mediated killing of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus.
J. Mol. Med.
PUBLISHED: 08-13-2013
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Based on in vitro synergy studies, the addition of nafcillin to daptomycin was used to treat refractory methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) bacteremia. Daptomycin is a de facto cationic antimicrobial peptide in vivo, with antistaphylococcal mechanisms reminiscent of innate host defense peptides (HDPs). In this study, the effects of nafcillin on HDP activity against MRSA were examined in vitro and in vivo. Exposures to ?-lactam antimicrobials in general, and nafcillin in particular, significantly increased killing of S. aureus by selected HDPs from keratinocytes, neutrophils, and platelets. This finding correlated with enhanced killing of MRSA by whole blood, neutrophils, and keratinocytes after growth in nafcillin. Finally, nafcillin pretreatment ex vivo reduced MRSA virulence in a murine subcutaneous infection model. Despite the lack of direct activity against MRSA, these studies show potent, consistent, and generalized nafcillin-mediated "sensitization" to increased killing of MRSA by various components of the innate host response. The use of nafcillin as adjunctive therapy in MRSA bacteremia merits further study and should be considered in cases refractory to standard therapy.
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IgG protease Mac/IdeS is not essential for phagocyte resistance or mouse virulence of M1T1 group A Streptococcus.
MBio
PUBLISHED: 08-01-2013
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The Mac/IdeS protein of group A Streptococcus (GAS) is a secreted cysteine protease with cleavage specificity for IgG and is highly expressed in the GAS serotype M1T1 clone, which is the serotype most frequently isolated from patients with life-threatening invasive infections. While studies of Mac/IdeS with recombinant protein have shown that the protein can potentially prevent opsonophagocytosis of GAS by neutrophils, the role of the protein in immune evasion as physiologically produced by the living organism has not been studied. Here we examined the contribution of Mac/IdeS to invasive GAS disease by generating a mutant lacking Mac/IdeS in the hyperinvasive M1T1 background. While Mac/IdeS was highly expressed and proteolytically active in the hyperinvasive strain, elimination of the bacterial protease did not significantly influence GAS phagocytic uptake, oxidative-burst induction, cathelicidin sensitivity, resistance to neutrophil or macrophage killing, or pathogenicity in pre- or postimmune mouse infectious challenges. We conclude that in the highly virulent M1T1 background, Mac/IdeS is not essential for either phagocyte resistance or virulence. Given the conservation of Mac/IdeS and homologues across GAS strains, it is possible that Mac/IdeS serves another important function in GAS ecology or contributes to virulence in other strain backgrounds.
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?-Lactam antibiotics targeting PBP1 selectively enhance daptomycin activity against methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus.
Antimicrob. Agents Chemother.
PUBLISHED: 07-29-2013
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The activity of daptomycin (DAP) against methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) is enhanced in the presence of subinhibitory concentrations of antistaphylococcal ?-lactam antibiotics by an undefined mechanism. Given the variability in the penicillin-binding protein (PBP)-binding profiles of different ?-lactam antibiotics, the purpose of this study was to examine the relative enhancement of DAP activity against MRSA by different ?-lactam antibiotics to determine if a specific PBP-binding profile is associated with the ability to enhance the anti-MRSA activity of DAP. We determined that both broad- and narrow-spectrum ?-lactam antibiotics known to exhibit PBP1 binding demonstrated potent enhancement of DAP anti-MRSA activity, whereas ?-lactam antibiotics with minimal PBP1 binding (cefoxitin, ceftriaxone, cefaclor, and cefotaxime) were less effective. We suspect that PBP1 disruption by ?-lactam antibiotics affects pathways of cell division in S. aureus that may be a compensatory response to DAP membrane insertion, resulting in DAP hypersusceptibility.
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EndoS2 is a unique and conserved enzyme of serotype M49 group A Streptococcus that hydrolyses N-linked glycans on IgG and ?1-acid glycoprotein.
Biochem. J.
PUBLISHED: 07-20-2013
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Many bacteria have evolved ways to interact with glycosylation functions of the immune system of their hosts. Streptococcus pyogenes [GAS (group A Streptococcus)] secretes the enzyme EndoS that cleaves glycans on human IgG and impairs the effector functions of the antibody. The ndoS gene, encoding EndoS, has, until now, been thought to be conserved throughout the serotypes. However, in the present study, we identify EndoS2, an endoglycosidase in serotype M49 GAS strains. We characterized EndoS2 and the corresponding ndoS2 gene using sequencing, bioinformatics, phylogenetic analysis, recombinant expression and LC-MS analysis of glycosidic activity. This revealed that EndoS2 is present exclusively, and highly conserved, in serotype M49 of GAS and is only 37% identical with EndoS. EndoS2 showed endo-?-N-acetylglucosaminidase activity on all N-linked glycans of IgG and on biantennary and sialylated glycans of AGP (?1-acid glycoprotein). The enzyme was found to act only on native IgG and AGP and to be specific for free biantennary glycans with or without terminal sialylation. GAS M49 expression of EndoS2 was monitored in relation to carbohydrates present in the culture medium and was linked to the presence of sucrose. We conclude that EndoS2 is a unique endoglycosidase in serotype M49 and differs from EndoS of other GAS strains by targeting both IgG and AGP. EndoS2 expands the repertoire of GAS effectors that modify key glycosylated molecules of host defence.
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The Globally Disseminated M1T1 Clone of Group A Streptococcus Evades Autophagy for Intracellular Replication.
Cell Host Microbe
PUBLISHED: 07-09-2013
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Autophagy is reported to be an important innate immune defense against the intracellular bacterial pathogen Group A Streptococcus (GAS). However, the GAS strains examined to date belong to serotypes infrequently associated with human disease. We find that the globally disseminated serotype M1T1 clone of GAS can evade autophagy and replicate efficiently in the cytosol of infected cells. Cytosolic M1T1 GAS (strain 5448), but not M6 GAS (strain JRS4), avoids ubiquitylation and recognition by the host autophagy marker LC3 and ubiquitin-LC3 adaptor proteins NDP52, p62, and NBR1. Expression of SpeB, a streptococcal cysteine protease, is critical for this process, as an isogenic M1T1 ?speB mutant is targeted to autophagy and attenuated for intracellular replication. SpeB degrades p62, NDP52, and NBR1 in vitro and within the host cell cytosol. These results uncover a proteolytic mechanism utilized by GAS to escape the host autophagy pathway that may underpin the success of the M1T1 clone.
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A key role for the urokinase plasminogen activator (uPA) in invasive Group A streptococcal infection.
PLoS Pathog.
PUBLISHED: 07-01-2013
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Recruitment of the serine protease plasmin is central to the pathogenesis of many bacterial species, including Group A streptococcus (GAS), a leading cause of morbidity and mortality globally. A key process in invasive GAS disease is the ability to accumulate plasmin at the cell surface, however the role of host activators of plasminogen in this process is poorly understood. Here, we demonstrate for the first time that the urokinase-type plasminogen activator (uPA) contributes to plasmin recruitment and subsequent invasive disease initiation in vivo. In the absence of a source of host plasminogen activators, streptokinase (Ska) was required to facilitate cell surface plasmin acquisition by GAS. However, in the absence of Ska, host activators were sufficient to promote cell surface plasmin acquisition by GAS strain 5448 during incubation with plasminogen or human plasma. Furthermore, GAS were able mediate a significant increase in the activation of zymogen pro-uPA in human plasma. In order to assess the contribution of uPA to invasive GAS disease, a previously undescribed transgenic mouse model of infection was employed. Both C57/black 6J, and AlbPLG1 mice expressing the human plasminogen transgene, were significantly more susceptible to invasive GAS disease than uPA-/- mice. The observed decrease in virulence in uPA-/-mice was found to correlate directly with a decrease in bacterial dissemination and reduced cell surface plasmin accumulation by GAS. These findings have significant implications for our understanding of GAS pathogenesis, and research aimed at therapeutic targeting of plasminogen activation in invasive bacterial infections.
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Cholera toxin disrupts barrier function by inhibiting exocyst-mediated trafficking of host proteins to intestinal cell junctions.
Cell Host Microbe
PUBLISHED: 06-21-2013
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Cholera toxin (CT), a virulence factor elaborated by Vibrio cholerae, is sufficient to induce the severe diarrhea characteristic of cholera. The enzymatic moiety of CT (CtxA) increases cAMP synthesis in intestinal epithelial cells, leading to chloride ion (Cl(-)) efflux through the CFTR Cl(-) channel. To preserve electroneutrality and osmotic balance, sodium ions and water also flow into the intestinal lumen via a paracellular route. We find that CtxA-driven cAMP increase also inhibits Rab11/exocyst-mediated trafficking of host proteins including E-cadherin and Notch signaling components to cell-cell junctions in Drosophila, human intestinal epithelial cells, and ligated mouse ileal loops, thereby disrupting barrier function. Additionally, CtxA induces junctional damage, weight loss, and dye leakage in the Drosophila gut, contributing to lethality from live V. cholerae infection, all of which can be rescued by Rab11 overexpression. These barrier-disrupting effects of CtxA may act in parallel with Cl(-) secretion to drive the pathophysiology of cholera.
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Adenosine-A3 receptors in neutrophil microdomains promote the formation of bacteria-tethering cytonemes.
EMBO Rep.
PUBLISHED: 06-04-2013
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The A3-adenosine receptor (A3AR) has recently emerged as a key regulator of neutrophil behaviour. Using a fluorescent A3AR ligand, we show that A3ARs aggregate in highly polarized immunomodulatory microdomains on human neutrophil membranes. In addition to regulating chemotaxis, A3ARs promote the formation of filipodia-like projections (cytonemes) that can extend up to 100 ?m to tether and reel in pathogens. Exposure to bacteria or an A3AR agonist stimulates the formation of these projections and bacterial phagocytosis, whereas an A3AR-selective antagonist inhibits cytoneme formation. Our results shed new light on the behaviour of neutrophils and identify the A3AR as a potential target for modulating their function.
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Epidermal Deletion of HIF-2? Stimulates Wound Closure.
J. Invest. Dermatol.
PUBLISHED: 06-03-2013
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Wound closure requires a complex series of micro-environmentally influenced events. A key aspect of wound closure is the migration of keratinocytes across the open wound. It has been found previously that the response to hypoxia via the HIF-1? transcription factor is a key feature of wound closure. The need for hypoxic response is likely due to interrupted wound vasculature, as well as infection, and in this work we investigated the need for a highly related hypoxic response transcription factor, HIF-2?. This factor was deleted tissue specifically in mice, and the resulting mice were found to have an accelerated rate of wound closure. This is correlated with a reduced bacterial load and inflammatory response in these mice. This indicates that manipulating or reducing the HIF-2? response in keratinocytes could be a useful means to accelerate wound healing and tissue repair.Journal of Investigative Dermatology advance online publication, 31 October 2013; doi:10.1038/jid.2013.395.
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Treatment of high-level gentamicin-resistant Enterococcus faecalis endocarditis with daptomycin plus ceftaroline.
Antimicrob. Agents Chemother.
PUBLISHED: 05-20-2013
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A recurrent case of left-sided endocarditis caused by high-level aminoglycoside-resistant Enterococcus faecalis was successfully treated with ceftaroline and daptomycin. This combination demonstrated excellent synergy in vitro. Mechanistically, ceftaroline enhanced binding of daptomycin to the cell membrane and sensitized E. faecalis to killing by human cathelicidin LL-37, a cationic innate host defense peptide. Daptomycin plus ceftaroline may be considered in salvage therapy in E. faecalis endovascular infections and requires further study.
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HIF-1? influences myeloid cell antigen presentation and response to subcutaneous OVA vaccination.
J. Mol. Med.
PUBLISHED: 04-01-2013
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Hypoxia-inducible factor (HIF)-1 is a transcription factor known to play an important role in regulating the innate immune response to infection. Under baseline conditions, cellular HIF-1 levels in leukocytes are scarce, but levels rise rapidly in response to hypoxia or molecular signals of infection or inflammation such as microbial surface molecules and host-derived cytokines. Innate immune cells such as macrophages, neutrophils, and mast cells exhibit increased microbicidal activity when HIF-1 levels are increased, and mice lacking HIF-1 are more susceptible to invasive bacterial infection. In this study, we used genetic and pharmacologic means to determine whether HIF-1 also plays an important role in the adaptive immune response to infection. HIF-1?/Tie-2 Cre(+) mice harboring a >90 % knockdown of HIF-1 in myeloid cells were studied. We found antigen-presenting cells from these mice that expressed lower levels of MHC-II and the costimulatory molecules CD80 and CD86, and were less able to induce T cell proliferation. These differences were present at baseline and persisted after activation. Increasing HIF-1 levels in wild-type (WT) cells by using the prolyl hydroxylase inhibitor drug AKB-4924 had the opposite effect, increasing MHC and costimulatory molecule expression and T cell proliferation. In experimental vaccination, HIF-1?/Tie-2 Cre(+) mice exhibited a weaker T cell response and lower antibody levels in response to vaccination than WT mice, while WT mice treated with a drug to elevate HIF-1 responded more strongly to vaccination. Thus, HIF-1 participates in bridging the innate and adaptive immune responses and may merit further exploration as an adjuvant target.
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Streptococcal collagen-like protein A and general stress protein 24 are immunomodulating virulence factors of group A Streptococcus.
FASEB J.
PUBLISHED: 03-26-2013
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In Western countries, invasive infections caused by M1T1 serotype group A Streptococcus (GAS) are epidemiologically linked to mutations in the control of virulence regulatory 2-component operon (covRS). In indigenous communities and developing countries, severe GAS disease is associated with genetically diverse non-M1T1 GAS serotypes. Hypervirulent M1T1 covRS mutant strains arise through selection by human polymorphonuclear cells for increased expression of GAS virulence factors such as the DNase Sda1, which promotes neutrophil resistance. The GAS bacteremia isolate NS88.2 (emm 98.1) is a covS mutant that exhibits a hypervirulent phenotype and neutrophil resistance yet lacks the phage-encoded Sda1. Here, we have employed a comprehensive systems biology (genomic, transcriptomic, and proteomic) approach to identify NS88.2 virulence determinants that enhance neutrophil resistance in the non-M1T1 GAS genetic background. Using this approach, we have identified streptococcal collagen-like protein A and general stress protein 24 proteins as NS88.2 determinants that contribute to survival in whole blood and neutrophil resistance in non-M1T1 GAS. This study has revealed new factors that contribute to GAS pathogenicity that may play important roles in resisting innate immune defenses and the development of human invasive infections.
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Role of hypoxia inducible factor-1 in keratinocyte inflammatory response and neutrophil recruitment.
J Inflamm (Lond)
PUBLISHED: 03-25-2013
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Hypoxia inducible factor-1 (HIF-1) is a major regulator of the cellular adaption to low oxygen stress and the innate immune function of myeloid cells. Treatment with the novel HIF-1 stabilizing drug AKB-4924 has been shown to enhance the bactericidal activity of keratinocytes as well as phagocytic cells. In this study, we sought to investigate the effect of pharmacological boosting of HIF-1 with AKB-4924 in keratinocytes and their contribution to the innate immune response.
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Acquisition of the Sda1-encoding bacteriophage does not enhance virulence of the serotype M1 Streptococcus pyogenes strain SF370.
Infect. Immun.
PUBLISHED: 03-25-2013
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The resurgence of invasive disease caused by Streptococcus pyogenes (group A Streptococcus [GAS]) in the past 30 years has paralleled the emergence and global dissemination of the highly virulent M1T1 clone. The GAS M1T1 clone has diverged from the ancestral M1 serotype by horizontal acquisition of two unique bacteriophages, encoding the potent DNase Sda1/SdaD2 and the superantigen SpeA, respectively. The phage-encoded DNase promotes escape from neutrophil extracellular traps and is linked to enhanced virulence of the M1T1 clone. In this study, we successfully used in vitro lysogenic conversion to transfer the Sda1-encoding phage from the M1T1 clonal strain 5448 to the nonclonal M1 isolate SF370 and determined the impact of this horizontal gene transfer event on virulence. Although Sda1 was expressed in SF370 lysogens, no capacity of the phage-converted strain to survive human neutrophil killing, switch to a hyperinvasive covRS mutant form, or cause invasive lethal infection in a humanized plasminogen mouse model was observed. This work suggests that the hypervirulence of the M1T1 clone is due to the unique synergic effect of the M1T1 clone bacteriophage-specific virulence factor Sda1 acting in concert with the M1T1 clone-specific genetic scaffold.
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Severe soft tissue infection caused by a non-beta-hemolytic Streptococcus pyogenes strain harboring a premature stop mutation in the sagC gene.
J. Clin. Microbiol.
PUBLISHED: 03-20-2013
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We recovered a non-beta-hemolytic Streptococcus pyogenes strain from a severe soft tissue infection. In this isolate, we detected a premature stop codon within the sagC gene of the streptolysin S (SLS) biosynthetic operon. Reintroduction of full-length sagC gene on a plasmid vector restored the beta-hemolytic phenotype to our clinical isolate, indicating that the point mutation in sagC accounted for loss of hemolytic activity. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first report to demonstrate that a severe soft tissue infection can be caused by a non-beta-hemolytic S. pyogenes strain lacking a functional SagC.
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Loss of Siglec-14 reduces the risk of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease exacerbation.
Cell. Mol. Life Sci.
PUBLISHED: 02-19-2013
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Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is a leading cause of mortality worldwide. COPD exacerbation, or episodic worsening of symptoms, often results in hospitalization and increased mortality rates. Airway infections by new bacterial strains, such as nontypeable Haemophilus influenzae (NTHi), are a major cause of COPD exacerbation. NTHi express lipooligosaccharides that contain sialic acids, and may interact with Siglec-14, a sialic acid recognition protein on myeloid cells that serves as an activating signal transduction receptor. A null allele polymorphism in SIGLEC14 may attenuate the inflammatory responses to NTHi by eliminating Siglec-14 expression. We asked if the loss of Siglec-14 attenuates the inflammatory response by myeloid cells against NTHi, and if the SIGLEC14-null polymorphism has any effect on COPD exacerbation. We found that NTHi interacts with Siglec-14 to enhance proinflammatory cytokine production in a tissue culture model. Inhibitors of the Syk tyrosine kinase suppress this response. Loss of Siglec-14, due to SIGLEC14-null allele homozygosity, is associated with a reduced risk of COPD exacerbation in a Japanese patient population. Taken together, Siglec-14 and its downstream signaling pathway facilitate the "infection-inflammation-exacerbation" axis of COPD disease progression, and may represent promising targets for therapeutic intervention.
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Coiled-coil irregularities of the M1 protein structure promote M1-fibrinogen interaction and influence group A Streptococcus host cell interactions and virulence.
J. Mol. Med.
PUBLISHED: 02-15-2013
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Group A Streptococcus (GAS) is a human pathogen causing a wide range of mild to severe and life-threatening diseases. The GAS M1 protein is a major virulence factor promoting GAS invasiveness and resistance to host innate immune clearance. M1 displays an irregular coiled-coil structure, including the B-repeats that bind fibrinogen. Previously, we found that B-repeat stabilisation generates an idealised version of M1 (M1) characterised by decreased fibrinogen binding in vitro. To extend these findings based on a soluble truncated version of M1, we now studied the importance of the B-repeat coiled-coil irregularities in full length M1 and M1 expressed in live GAS and tested whether the modulation of M1-fibrinogen interactions would open up novel therapeutic approaches. We found that altering either the M1 structure on the GAS cell surface or removing its target host protein fibrinogen blunted GAS virulence. GAS expressing M1 showed an impaired ability to adhere to and to invade human endothelial cells, was more readily killed by whole blood or neutrophils and most importantly was less virulent in a murine necrotising fasciitis model. M1-mediated virulence of wild-type GAS was strictly dependent on the presence and concentration of fibrinogen complementing our finding that M1-fibrinogen interactions are crucial for GAS virulence. Consistently blocking M1-fibrinogen interactions by fragment D reduced GAS virulence in vitro and in vivo. This supports our conclusion that M1-fibrinogen interactions are crucial for GAS virulence and that interference may open up novel complementary treatment options for GAS infections caused by the leading invasive GAS strain M1.
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Plasmin(ogen) Acquisition by Group A Streptococcus Protects against C3b-Mediated Neutrophil Killing.
J Innate Immun
PUBLISHED: 02-07-2013
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The globally significant human pathogen group A Streptococcus (GAS) sequesters the host protease plasmin to the cell surface during invasive disease initiation. Recent evidence has shown that localized plasmin activity prevents opsonization of several bacterial species by key components of the innate immune system in vitro. Here we demonstrate that plasmin at the GAS cell surface resulted in degradation of complement factor C3b, and that plasminogen acquisition is associated with a decrease in C3b opsonization and neutrophil-mediated killing in vitro. Furthermore, the ability to acquire cell surface plasmin(ogen) correlates directly with a decrease in C3b opsonization, neutrophil phagocytosis, and increased bacterial survival in a humanized plasminogen mouse model of infection. These findings demonstrate that localized plasmin(ogen) plays an important role in facilitating GAS escape from the host innate immune response and increases bacterial virulence in the early stages of infection.
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Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus bacterial nitric-oxide synthase affects antibiotic sensitivity and skin abscess development.
J. Biol. Chem.
PUBLISHED: 01-15-2013
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Staphylococcus aureus infections present an enormous global health concern complicated by an alarming increase in antibiotic resistance. S. aureus is among the few bacterial species that express nitric-oxide synthase (bNOS) and thus can catalyze NO production from L-arginine. Here we generate an isogenic bNOS-deficient mutant in the epidemic community-acquired methicillin-resistant S. aureus (MRSA) USA300 clone to study its contribution to virulence and antibiotic susceptibility. Loss of bNOS increased MRSA susceptibility to reactive oxygen species and host cathelicidin antimicrobial peptides, which correlated with increased MRSA killing by human neutrophils and within neutrophil extracellular traps. bNOS also promoted resistance to the pharmaceutical antibiotics that act on the cell envelope such as vancomycin and daptomycin. Surprisingly, bNOS-deficient strains gained resistance to aminoglycosides, suggesting that the role of bNOS in antibiotic susceptibility is more complex than previously observed in Bacillus species. Finally, the MRSA bNOS mutant showed reduced virulence with decreased survival and smaller abscess generation in a mouse subcutaneous infection model. Together, these data indicate that bNOS contributes to MRSA innate immune and antibiotic resistance phenotypes. Future development of specific bNOS inhibitors could be an attractive option to simultaneously reduce MRSA pathology and enhance its susceptibility to commonly used antibiotics.
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Hypoxia potentiates allergen induction of HIF-1?, chemokines, airway inflammation, TGF-?1, and airway remodeling in a mouse model.
Clin. Immunol.
PUBLISHED: 01-04-2013
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Whether hypoxia contributes to airway inflammation and remodeling in asthma is unknown. In this study we used mice exposed to a hypoxic environment during allergen challenge (simulating hypoxia during an asthma exacerbation) to investigate the contribution of hypoxia to airway inflammation and remodeling. Although neither hypoxia alone, nor OVA allergen alone, induced significant neutrophil influx into the lung, the combination of OVA and hypoxia induced a synergistic 27 fold increase in peribronchial neutrophils, enhanced expression of HIF-1? and one of its target genes, the CXC-family neutrophil chemokine KC. The combination of hypoxia and OVA allergen increased eotaxin-1, peribronchial eosinophils, lung TGB-?1 expression, and indices of airway remodeling (fibrosis and smooth muscle) compared to either stimulus alone. As hypoxia is present in >90% of severe asthma exacerbations, these findings underscore the potential of hypoxia to potentiate the airway inflammatory response, remodeling, and accelerate the decline of lung function in asthma exacerbations.
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Myeloid Cell Sirtuin-1 Expression Does Not Alter Host Immune Responses to Gram-Negative Endotoxemia or Gram-Positive Bacterial Infection.
PLoS ONE
PUBLISHED: 01-01-2013
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The role of sirtuin-1 (SIRT1) in innate immunity, and in particular the influence of SIRT1 on antimicrobial defense against infection, has yet to be reported but is important to define since SIRT1 inhibitors are being investigated as therapeutic agents in the treatment of cancer, Huntingtons disease, and autoimmune diseases. Given the therapeutic potential of SIRT1 suppression, we sought to characterize the role of SIRT1 in host defense. Utilizing both pharmacologic methods and a genetic knockout, we demonstrate that SIRT1 expression has little influence on macrophage and neutrophil antimicrobial functions. Myeloid SIRT1 expression does not change mortality in gram-negative toxin-induced shock or gram-positive bacteremia, suggesting that therapeutic suppression of SIRT1 may be done safely without suppression of myeloid cell-specific immune responses to severe bacterial infections.
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Streptococcus pneumoniae invades erythrocytes and utilizes them to evade human innate immunity.
PLoS ONE
PUBLISHED: 01-01-2013
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Streptococcus pneumoniae, a Gram-positive bacterium, is a major cause of invasive infection-related diseases such as pneumonia and sepsis. In blood, erythrocytes are considered to be an important factor for bacterial growth, as they contain abundant nutrients. However, the relationship between S. pneumoniae and erythrocytes remains unclear. We analyzed interactions between S. pneumoniae and erythrocytes, and found that iron ion present in human erythrocytes supported the growth of Staphylococcus aureus, another major Gram-positive sepsis pathogen, while it partially inhibited pneumococcal growth by generating free radicals. S. pneumoniae cells incubated with human erythrocytes or blood were subjected to scanning electron and confocal fluorescence microscopic analyses, which showed that the bacterial cells adhered to and invaded human erythrocytes. In addition, S. pneumoniae cells were found associated with human erythrocytes in cultures of blood from patients with an invasive pneumococcal infection. Erythrocyte invasion assays indicated that LPXTG motif-containing pneumococcal proteins, erythrocyte lipid rafts, and erythrocyte actin remodeling are all involved in the invasion mechanism. In a neutrophil killing assay, the viability of S. pneumoniae co-incubated with erythrocytes was higher than that without erythrocytes. Also, H2O2 killing of S. pneumoniae was nearly completely ineffective in the presence of erythrocytes. These results indicate that even when S. pneumoniae organisms are partially killed by iron ion-induced free radicals, they can still invade erythrocytes. Furthermore, in the presence of erythrocytes, S. pneumoniae can more effectively evade antibiotics, neutrophil phagocytosis, and H2O2 killing.
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Ampicillin enhances daptomycin- and cationic host defense peptide-mediated killing of ampicillin- and vancomycin-resistant Enterococcus faecium.
Antimicrob. Agents Chemother.
PUBLISHED: 11-28-2011
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We studied an ampicillin- and vancomycin-resistant Enterococcus faecium (VRE) isolate from a patient with endocarditis and bacteremia refractory to treatment with daptomycin (6 mg/kg of body weight) plus linezolid. Blood cultures cleared within 24 h of changing therapy to daptomycin (12 mg/kg) plus ampicillin. We examined the effects of ampicillin on daptomycin-induced growth inhibition and killing, surface charge, and susceptibility to several prototypical host defense cationic antimicrobial peptides. MICs and time-kill curves with daptomycin were assessed in the presence and absence of ampicillin. The impact of ampicillin on surface charge was assessed by flow cytometry and a poly-l-lysine binding assay. The effects of ampicillin preexposures upon VRE killing by five distinct cationic peptides of different structure, charge, origin, and mechanism of action were analyzed using the epidermal cathelicidin LL-37, thrombin-induced platelet microbicidal proteins (tPMPs), and a synthetic congener modeled after tPMP microbicidal domains (RP-1), human neutrophil peptide-1 (hNP-1), and polymyxin B (bacteria derived). Fluoroscein-Bodipy-labeled daptomycin was used to evaluate daptomycin binding to VRE membranes in the presence or absence of ampicillin. In media containing ampicillin (25 to 100 mg/liter), daptomycin MICs decreased from 1.0 to 0.38 mg/liter. Based on time-kill analysis and an in vitro pharmacodynamic model, ampicillin enhanced daptomycin activity against the study VRE from a bacteriostatic to a bactericidal profile. VRE grown in ampicillin (25 to 150 mg/liter) demonstrated an incremental reduction in its relative net positive surface charge. When grown in the presence (versus absence) of ampicillin (25 and 100 mg/liter), the VRE strain (i) was more susceptible to killing by LL-37, tPMPs, hNP-1, and RP-1 but not to polymyxin B and (ii) exhibited greater binding to Bodipy-labeled daptomycin. We conclude that ampicillin induces reductions in net positive bacterial surface charge of VRE, correlating with enhanced bactericidal effects of cationic calcium-daptomycin and a diverse range of other cationic peptides in vitro. While the mechanism(s) of such ?-lactam-mediated shifts in surface charge remains to be defined, these finding suggest a potential for ?-lactam-mediated enhancement of activity of both daptomycin and innate host defense peptides against antibiotic-resistant bacteria.
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The pore-forming protein Cry5B elicits the pathogenicity of Bacillus sp. against Caenorhabditis elegans.
PLoS ONE
PUBLISHED: 11-04-2011
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The soil bacterium Bacillus thuringiensis is a pathogen of insects and nematodes and is very closely related to, if not the same species as, Bacillus cereus and Bacillus anthracis. The defining characteristic of B. thuringiensis that sets it apart from B. cereus and B. anthracis is the production of crystal (Cry) proteins, which are pore-forming toxins or pore-forming proteins (PFPs). Although it is known that PFPs are important virulence factors since their elimination results in reduced virulence of many pathogenic bacteria, the functions by which PFPs promote virulence are incompletely understood. Here we study the effect of Cry proteins in B. thuringiensis pathogenesis of the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans. We find that whereas B. thuringiensis on its own is not able to infect C. elegans, the addition of the PFP Cry protein, Cry5B, results in a robust lethal infection that consumes the nematode host in 1-2 days, leading to a "Bob" or bag-of-bacteria phenotype. Unlike other infections of C. elegans characterized to date, the infection by B. thuringiensis shows dose-dependency based on bacterial inoculum size and based on PFP concentration. Although the infection process takes 1-2 days, the PFP-instigated infection process is irreversibly established within 15 minutes of initial exposure. Remarkably, treatment of C. elegans with Cry5B PFP is able to instigate many other Bacillus species, including B. anthracis and even "non-pathogenic" Bacillus subtilis, to become lethal and infectious agents to C. elegans. Co-culturing of Cry5B-expressing B. thuringiensis with B. anthracis can result in lethal infection of C. elegans by B. anthracis. Our data demonstrate that one potential property of PFPs is to sensitize the host to bacterial infection and further that C. elegans and probably other roundworms can be common hosts for B. cereus-group bacteria, findings with important ecological and research implications.
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Improved diagnostic accuracy of group A streptococcal pharyngitis with use of real-time biosurveillance.
Ann. Intern. Med.
PUBLISHED: 09-21-2011
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Clinical prediction rules do not incorporate real-time incidence data to adjust estimates of disease risk in symptomatic patients.
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Molecular insight into invasive group A streptococcal disease.
Nat. Rev. Microbiol.
PUBLISHED: 09-16-2011
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Streptococcus pyogenes is also known as group A Streptococcus (GAS) and is an important human pathogen that causes considerable morbidity and mortality worldwide. The GAS serotype M1T1 clone is the most frequently isolated serotype from life-threatening invasive (at a sterile site) infections, such as streptococcal toxic shock-like syndrome and necrotizing fasciitis. Here, we describe the virulence factors and newly discovered molecular events that mediate the in vivo changes from non-invasive GAS serotype M1T1 to the invasive phenotype, and review the invasive-disease trigger for non-M1 GAS. Understanding the molecular basis and mechanism of initiation for streptococcal invasive disease may expedite the discovery of novel therapeutic targets for the treatment and control of severe invasive GAS diseases.
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Invariant natural killer T cells recognize glycolipids from pathogenic Gram-positive bacteria.
Nat. Immunol.
PUBLISHED: 07-27-2011
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Natural killer T cells (NKT cells) recognize glycolipid antigens presented by CD1d. These cells express an evolutionarily conserved, invariant T cell antigen receptor (TCR), but the forces that drive TCR conservation have remained uncertain. Here we show that NKT cells recognized diacylglycerol-containing glycolipids from Streptococcus pneumoniae, the leading cause of community-acquired pneumonia, and group B Streptococcus, which causes neonatal sepsis and meningitis. Furthermore, CD1d-dependent responses by NKT cells were required for activation and host protection. The glycolipid response was dependent on vaccenic acid, which is present in low concentrations in mammalian cells. Our results show how microbial lipids position the sugar for recognition by the invariant TCR and, most notably, extend the range of microbes recognized by this conserved TCR to several clinically important bacteria.
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Human Siglec-5 inhibitory receptor and immunoglobulin A (IgA) have separate binding sites in streptococcal beta protein.
J. Biol. Chem.
PUBLISHED: 07-27-2011
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Sialic acid-binding immunoglobulin-like lectins (Siglecs) are receptors believed to be important for regulation of cellular activation and inflammation. Several pathogenic microbes bind specific Siglecs via sialic acid-containing structures at the microbial surface, interactions that may result in modulation of host responses. Recently, it was shown that the group B Streptococcus (GBS) binds to human Siglec-5 (hSiglec-5), an inhibitory receptor expressed on macrophages and neutrophils, via the IgA-binding surface ? protein, providing the first example of a protein/protein interaction between a pathogenic microbe and a Siglec. Here we show that the hSiglec-5-binding part of ? resides in the N-terminal half of the protein, which also harbors the previously determined IgA-binding region. We constructed bacterial mutants expressing variants of the ? protein with non-overlapping deletions in the N-terminal half of the protein. Using these mutants and recombinant ? fragments, we showed that the hSiglec-5-binding site is located in the most N-terminal part of ? (B6N region; amino acids 1-152) and that the hSiglec-5- and IgA-binding domains in ? are completely separate. We showed with BIAcore(TM) analysis that tandem variants of the hSiglec-5- and IgA-binding domains bind to their respective ligands with high affinity. Finally, we showed that the B6N region, but not the IgA-binding region of ?, triggers recruitment of the tyrosine phosphatase SHP-2 to hSiglec-5 in U937 monocytes. Taken together, we have identified and isolated the first microbial non-sialic acid Siglec-binding region that can be used as a tool in studies of the ?/hSiglec-5 interaction.
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New insights into the biological effects of anthrax toxins: linking cellular to organismal responses.
Microbes Infect.
PUBLISHED: 07-22-2011
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The anthrax toxins lethal toxin (LT) and edema toxin (ET) are essential virulence factors produced by Bacillus anthracis. These toxins act during two distinct phases of anthrax infection. During the first, prodromal phase, which is often asymptomatic, anthrax toxins act on cells of the immune system to help the pathogen establish infection. Then, during the rapidly progressing (or fulminant) stage of the disease bacteria disseminate via a hematological route to various target tissues and organs, which are typically highly vascularized. As bacteria proliferate in the bloodstream, LT and ET begin to accumulate rapidly reaching a critical threshold level that will cause death even when the bacterial proliferation is curtailed by antibiotics. During this final phase of infection the toxins cause an increase in vascular permeability and a decrease in function of target organs including the heart, spleen, kidney, adrenal gland, and brain. In this review, we examine the various biological effects of anthrax toxins, focusing on the fulminant stage of the disease and on mechanisms by which the two toxins may collaborate to cause cardiovascular collapse. We discuss normal mechanisms involved in maintaining vascular integrity and based on recent studies indicating that LT and ET cooperatively inhibit membrane trafficking to cell-cell junctions we explore several potential mechanisms by which the toxins may achieve their lethal effects. We also summarize the effects of other potential virulence factors secreted by B. anthracis and consider the role of toxic factors in the evolutionarily recent emergence of this devastating disease.
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Microbial competition between Bacillus subtilis and Staphylococcus aureus monitored by imaging mass spectrometry.
Microbiology (Reading, Engl.)
PUBLISHED: 06-30-2011
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Microbial competition exists in the general environment, such as soil or aquatic habitats, upon or within unicellular or multicellular eukaryotic life forms. The molecular actions that govern microbial competition, leading to niche establishment and microbial monopolization, remain undetermined. The emerging technology of imaging mass spectrometry (IMS) enabled the observation that there is directionality in the metabolic output of the organism Bacillus subtilis when co-cultured with Staphylococcus aureus. The directionally released antibiotic alters S. aureus virulence factor production and colonization. Therefore, IMS provides insight into the largely hidden nature of competitive microbial encounters and niche establishment, and provides a paradigm for future antibiotic discovery.
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Use of antistaphylococcal beta-lactams to increase daptomycin activity in eradicating persistent bacteremia due to methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus: role of enhanced daptomycin binding.
Clin. Infect. Dis.
PUBLISHED: 06-22-2011
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We used daptomycin plus antistaphylococcal ?-lactams (ASBL) to clear refractory MRSA bacteremia. In vitro studies showed enhanced daptomycin bactericidal activity, increased membrane daptomycin binding, and decrease in positive surface charge induced by ASBLs against daptomycin nonsusceptible MRSA. Addition of ASBLs to daptomycin may be of benefit in refractory MRSA bacteremia. (Although the official designation is "daptomycin nonsusceptiblity," we will use the term "daptomycin-resistance" in this paper for facility of presentation.).
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The FbaB-type fibronectin-binding protein of Streptococcus pyogenes promotes specific invasion into endothelial cells.
Cell. Microbiol.
PUBLISHED: 05-25-2011
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Invasive serotype M3 Streptococcus pyogenes are among the most frequently isolated organisms from patients suffering from invasive streptococcal disease and have the potential to invade primary human endothelial cells (EC) via a rapid and efficient mechanism. FbaB protein, the fibronectin-binding protein expressed by M3 S. pyogenes, was herein identified as a potent invasin for EC. By combining heterologous gene expression with allelic replacement, we demonstrate that FbaB is essential and sufficient to trigger EC invasion via a Rac1-dependent phagocytosis-like uptake. FbaB-mediated uptake follows the classical endocytic pathway with lysosomal destination. FbaB is demonstrated to be a streptococcal invasin exhibiting EC tropism. FbaB thus initiates a process that may contribute to the deep tissue tropism and spread of invasive S. pyogenes isolates into the vascular EC lining.
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JoVE Visualize is a tool created to match the last 5 years of PubMed publications to methods in JoVE's video library.

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We use abstracts found on PubMed and match them to JoVE videos to create a list of 10 to 30 related methods videos.

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In developing our video relationships, we compare around 5 million PubMed articles to our library of over 4,500 methods videos. In some cases the language used in the PubMed abstracts makes matching that content to a JoVE video difficult. In other cases, there happens not to be any content in our video library that is relevant to the topic of a given abstract. In these cases, our algorithms are trying their best to display videos with relevant content, which can sometimes result in matched videos with only a slight relation.