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  • Blackwell Publishing Ltd  (6)
  • Annual Reviews  (1)
  • 1
    ISSN: 1365-2958
    Source: Blackwell Publishing Journal Backfiles 1879-2005
    Topics: Biology , Medicine
    Notes: A phospholipase C which cleaves phosphatidylinositol and glycosylphosphatidylinositol (GPI) anchors was identified in Listeria monocytogenes. This 36kDa protein is encoded by the gene plcA, and is homologous to the Bacillus cereus, Bacillus thuringiensis and eukaryotic phosphatidylinositol-specific phospholipases C (PI-PLC). Expression of the plcA gene in Escherichia coli correlates with the appearance of PI-PLC activity in the cells. In Listeria monocytogenes, the activity is secreted to the culture medium. PI-PLC activity was only found in the two pathogenic species of the genus Listeria, namely L. monocytogenes and L. ivanovii. PI-PLC activity was lost and virulence decreased when the plcA gene was disrupted in the chromosome. This suggests that the PI-PLC of L. monocytogenes might be involved in virulence.
    Type of Medium: Electronic Resource
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  • 2
    ISSN: 1365-2958
    Source: Blackwell Publishing Journal Backfiles 1879-2005
    Topics: Biology , Medicine
    Notes: Listeriotysjn O (LLO), a major virulence factor of the intracellular bacterium Listens monocytogenes, shares with other known ‘thiol-activated toxins’ a conserved undecapeptide, ECTGLAWEWWR, located in the C-terminal region of the protein and containing the unique cysteine of the molecule. Single amino acid substitutions were created in this region to study the role of cysteine and tryptophan residues in the lytic activity of LLO as well as in the virulence of the bacterium. Transformation of a transposon-induced non-haemolytic mutant with plasmids carrying the mutated genes allowed allele exchange and transfer of mutations on to the chromosome by in vivo recombination. The mutant strains secreted a full-length 59 kilodalton LLO. A decrease of 25% in the haemolytic activity in culture supernatants was observed in the case of mutation Cys-484 to Ala and of 80% for mutation Cys-484 to Ser. Mutations Trp-491 and Trp-492 to Ala decreased activity by, respectively, 95% and 99.9%. LLOs produced by the mutants, as the wild type, were active at low pH, inhibited by cholesterol, and able to bind to cell membranes. A close relationship was found between virulence of mutants in the mouse model and haemolytic activity in their culture supematants. These results demonstrate that the thiol group of Cys-484 is not essential for either haemolytic activity in vitro or virulence in vivo. In contrast, Trp-492 appears to be required for both haemolytic activity and virulence. The finding that the nearly non-haemolytic mutant Trp-492-Ala persisted in the spleen for several days after inoculation indicates that mutagenesis of a virulence determinant can attenuate virulence and provides a novel approach to the development of live vaccine strains.
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  • 3
    Electronic Resource
    Electronic Resource
    Oxford, UK : Blackwell Publishing Ltd
    Molecular microbiology 9 (1993), S. 0 
    ISSN: 1365-2958
    Source: Blackwell Publishing Journal Backfiles 1879-2005
    Topics: Biology , Medicine
    Type of Medium: Electronic Resource
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  • 4
    ISSN: 1365-2958
    Source: Blackwell Publishing Journal Backfiles 1879-2005
    Topics: Biology , Medicine
    Notes: Entry of Listeria monocytogenes into epithelial cells requires expression of inlA, the first gene of an operon comprising two genes: inlA, which encodes internalin, a 800-amino-acid protein, and inlB, which encodes a 630-amino-acid protein. We report here that the inl locus is transcribed on two transcripts in constant relative ratio: a 5 kb transcript spanning inlA and inlB, and a 2.9 kb transcript that covers only inlA. The promoter is located 397 bp from the GTG initiator of inlA and displays in its -35 region a palindrome similar to that found in promoters controlled by the pleiotropic activator prfA. Transcription of the inl locus is, as are several other L. monocytogenes virulence genes, activated by prfA and regulated by temperature—with higher expression at 37°C versus 25°C — and bacterial growth state. It is maximal during exponential growth and correlates with maximal invasivity of the bacteria in the human epithelial cell line Caco-2. It also correlates with maximum amounts of internalin present on the bacterial surface. Internalin is also detected in substantial amounts in culture supernatants. Taken together, these data suggest that surface-bound internalin plays an important role in bacterial entry but do not exclude a role for the released form.
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  • 5
    ISSN: 1365-2958
    Source: Blackwell Publishing Journal Backfiles 1879-2005
    Topics: Biology , Medicine
    Notes: Evidence for ptelotropic activation of virulence genes in Listeria monocytogenes is presented. A complementation study of a spontaneous prfA-deletion mutant and analysis of cassette and transposon insertion mutants showed that the gene prfA activates the transcription of four independent genes which code for a phosphatidyl-inositol-specific phospholipase C (gene plcA), listeriolysin O (gene hlyA), a metallo-protease (gene prtA) and a lecithinase (gene prtC). Transcription of prfA is not constitutive. During the growth phase, two peaks of prfA transcript accumulation were observed: the first was during exponential growth, and the second was at the beginning of the stationary phase. In addition, two prf4-specific transcripts of 2.2 kb and 1 kb are detected. Early in exponential growth, prfA is co-transcribed with plcA which lies upstream prfA, giving rise to the 2.2 kb plcA-prfA transcript. In late-exponential growth and at the beginning of the stationary phase, prfA transcripts of 1 kb are predominantly detected. Our results demonstrate that since prfA controls plcA transcription, it also regulates its own synthesis.
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  • 6
    ISSN: 1574-6968
    Source: Blackwell Publishing Journal Backfiles 1879-2005
    Topics: Biology
    Notes: Through the analysis of a non-motile mutant of Listeria monocytogenes, we identified and characterized a locus containing the cheR, motA and motB genes. These three genes are homologous to the cheR, and motA/B genes of Bacillus subtilis which in this organism are 954 kb apart. The gene organization in Listeria is also not similar either to that of Escherichia coli in which cheR and motAB are 5.9 kb apart. CheR and motA/B, as previously reported for flaA, the flagellin gene, are thermoregulated with a higher expression at 25°C and low expression at 37°C. In a ΔprfA strain, motA expression was derepressed at 37°C, suggesting that PrfA, the transcriptional activator of virulence genes, downregulates motility genes in Listeria at 37°C.
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  • 7
    Electronic Resource
    Electronic Resource
    Palo Alto, Calif. : Annual Reviews
    ISSN: 1081-0706
    Source: Annual Reviews Electronic Back Volume Collection 1932-2001ff
    Topics: Biology , Medicine
    Notes: Abstract Many pathogens actively exploit the actin cytoskeleton during infection. This exploitation may take place during entry into mammalian cells after engagement of a receptor and/or as series of signaling events culminating in the engulfment of the microorganism. Although actin rearrangements are a common feature of most internalization events (e.g. entry of Listeria, Salmonella, Shigella, Yersinia, Neisseria, and Bartonella), bacterial and other cellular factors involved in entry are specific to each bacterium. Another step during which pathogens harness the actin cytoskeleton takes place in the cytosol, within which some bacteria (Listeria, Shigella, Rickettsia) or viruses (vaccinia virus) are able to move. Movement is coupled to a polarized actin polymerization process, with the formation of characteristic actin tails. Increasing attention has focused on this phenomenon due to its striking similarity to cellular events occurring at the leading edge of locomoting cells. Thus pathogens are convenient systems in which to study actin cytoskeleton rearrangements in response to stimuli at the plasma membrane or inside cells.
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