Blackwell Publishing Journal Backfiles 1879-2005
Staphylococcus aureus is a gram-positive bacterium frequently isolated from patients with bloodstream infections. Endothelial cells (EC) play an important role in host defence against bacteria, and recent reports have shown that infection of EC with S. aureus induces expression of cytokines and cell surface receptors involved in activating the innate immune response. The ability of S. aureus to invade nonphagocytic cells, including EC, has been documented. However, the knowledge of the role of EC in pathogenesis of S. aureus infection is still limited. In this study, we investigate the gene-expression program in human EC initiated by internalized S. aureus, using microarray analysis. We found 156 genes that were differentially regulated at least threefold, using arrays representing 14,239 genes. Many of the upregulated genes code for proteins involved in innate immunity, such as cytokines, chemokines and cell adhesion proteins. Other upregulated genes encode proteins involved in antigen presentation, cell signalling and metabolism. Furthermore, intracellular bacteria survived for days without inducing EC death.
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