(1/25659) Chemokine mRNA expression in gastric mucosa is associated with Helicobacter pylori cagA positivity and severity of gastritis.

AIM: To investigate the association between the quantity of gastric chemokine mRNA expression, severity of gastritis, and cagA positivity in Helicobacter pylori associated gastritis. METHODS: In 83 dyspeptic patients, antral and corpus biopsies were taken for semiquantitative reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) and histological grading of gastritis. Gastritis was evaluated by visual analogue scales. Quantities of chemokine (IL-8, GRO alpha, ENA-78, RANTES, MCP-1) RT-PCR products were compared with G3PDH products. Each sample was also evaluated for the presence of cagA and ureA mRNA by RT-PCR. RESULTS: mRNA expression of all five chemokines was significantly greater in H pylori positive than in H pylori negative mucosa. In H pylori positive patients, in the antrum C-X-C chemokine mRNA expression was significantly greater in cagA positive patients than in cagA negative patients, but there were no significant differences in C-C chemokine mRNA expression. In H pylori positive patients, chemokine mRNA expression in the corpus was less than in the antrum. In contrast to the antrum, only GRO alpha mRNA expression was significantly greater in cagA positive infection. Polymorphonuclear cell infiltration was correlated with C-X-C chemokine mRNA expression. Significant correlations were also found between bacterial density and C-X-C chemokine mRNA expression. CONCLUSIONS: In H pylori infection, C-X-C chemokines may play a primary role in active gastritis. Infection with cagA positive H pylori induces greater gastric chemokine mRNA expression in the antral mucosa, which may be relevant to the increased mucosal damage associated with cagA positive H pylori infection.  (+info)

(2/25659) Evolutionary relationships of pathogenic clones of Vibrio cholerae by sequence analysis of four housekeeping genes.

Studies of the Vibrio cholerae population, using molecular typing techniques, have shown the existence of several pathogenic clones, mainly sixth-pandemic, seventh-pandemic, and U.S. Gulf Coast clones. However, the relationship of the pathogenic clones to environmental V. cholerae isolates remains unclear. A previous study to determine the phylogeny of V. cholerae by sequencing the asd (aspartate semialdehyde dehydrogenase) gene of V. cholerae showed that the sixth-pandemic, seventh-pandemic, and U.S. Gulf Coast clones had very different asd sequences which fell into separate lineages in the V. cholerae population. As gene trees drawn from a single gene may not reflect the true topology of the population, we sequenced the mdh (malate dehydrogenase) and hlyA (hemolysin A) genes from representatives of environmental and clinical isolates of V. cholerae and found that the mdh and hlyA sequences from the three pathogenic clones were identical, except for the previously reported 11-bp deletion in hlyA in the sixth-pandemic clone. Identical sequences were obtained, despite average nucleotide differences in the mdh and hlyA genes of 1.52 and 3.25%, respectively, among all the isolates, suggesting that the three pathogenic clones are closely related. To extend these observations, segments of the recA and dnaE genes were sequenced from a selection of the pathogenic isolates, where the sequences were either identical or substantially different between the clones. The results show that the three pathogenic clones are very closely related and that there has been a high level of recombination in their evolution.  (+info)

(3/25659) A 55-kilodalton immunodominant antigen of Porphyromonas gingivalis W50 has arisen via horizontal gene transfer.

A 55-kDa outer membrane protein of Porphyromonas gingivalis W50 is a significant target of the serum immunoglobulin G antibody response of periodontal disease patients and hence may play an important role in host-bacterium interactions in periodontal disease. The gene encoding the 55-kDa antigen (ragB, for receptor antigen B) was isolated on a 9.5-kb partial Sau3AI fragment of P. gingivalis W50 chromosomal DNA in pUC18 by immunoscreening with a monoclonal antibody to this antigen. The 1.6-kb open reading frame (ORF) encoding RagB was located via subcloning and nested-deletion analysis. Sequence analysis demonstrated the presence of an upstream 3.1-kb ORF (ragA) which is cotranscribed with ragB. A number of genetic characteristics suggest that the ragAB locus was acquired by a horizontal gene transfer event. These include a significantly reduced G+C content relative to that of the P. gingivalis chromosome (42 versus 48%) and the presence of mobility elements flanking this locus in P. gingivalis W50. Furthermore, Southern blotting and PCR analyses showed a restricted distribution of this locus in laboratory and clinical isolates of this bacterium. The association of ragAB+ P. gingivalis with clinical status was examined by PCR analysis of subgingival samples. ragAB+ was not detected in P. gingivalis-positive shallow pockets from periodontal disease patients but was present in 36% of the P. gingivalis-positive samples from deep pockets. These data suggest that the ragAB locus was acquired by certain P. gingivalis strains via horizontal gene transfer and that the acquisition of this locus may facilitate the survival of these strains at sites of periodontal destruction.  (+info)

(4/25659) Cloning and expression of the dnaK gene of Campylobacter jejuni and antigenicity of heat shock protein 70.

Campylobacter jejuni is a leading cause of infectious diarrhea throughout the world. In addition, there is growing evidence that Guillain-Barre syndrome, an inflammatory demyelinating disease of the peripheral nervous system, is frequently preceded by C. jejuni infection. In the present study, the hrcA-grpE-dnaK gene cluster of C. jejuni was cloned and sequenced. The dnaK gene consists of an open reading frame of 1,869 bp and encodes a protein with a high degree of homology to other bacterial 70-kDa heat shock proteins (HSPs). The overall percentages of identity to the HSP70 proteins of Helicobacter pylori, Borrelia burgdorferi, Chlamydia trachomatis, and Bacillus subtilis were calculated to be 78.1, 60.5, 57.2, and 53. 8%, respectively. Regions similar to the Escherichia coli sigma70 promoter consensus sequence and to a cis-acting regulatory element (CIRCE) are located upstream of the hrcA gene. Following heat shock, a rapid increase of dnaK mRNA was detectable, which reached its maximum after 20 to 30 min. A 6-His-tagged recombinant DnaK protein (rCjDnaK-His) was generated in E. coli, after cloning of the dnaK coding region into pET-22b(+), and purified by affinity and gel filtration chromatography. Antibody responses to rCjDnaK-His were significantly elevated, compared to those of healthy individuals, in about one-third of the serum specimens obtained from C. jejuni enteritis patients.  (+info)

(5/25659) Yops of Yersinia enterocolitica inhibit receptor-dependent superoxide anion production by human granulocytes.

The virulence plasmid-borne genes encoding Yersinia adhesin A (YadA) and several Yersinia secreted proteins (Yops) are involved in the inhibition of phagocytosis and killing of Yersinia enterocolitica by human granulocytes. One of these Yops, YopH, dephosphorylates multiple tyrosine-phosphorylated proteins in eukaryotic cells and is involved in the inhibition of phagocytosis of Y. enterocolitica by human granulocytes. We investigated whether antibody- and complement-opsonized plasmid-bearing (pYV+) Y. enterocolitica inhibits O2- production by human granulocytes in response to various stimuli and whether YopH is involved. Granulocytes were preincubated with mutant strains unable to express YadA or to secrete Yops or YopH. O2- production by granulocytes during stimulation was assessed by measuring the reduction of ferricytochrome c. PYV+ Y. enterocolitica inhibited O2- production by granulocytes incubated with opsonized Y. enterocolitica or N-formyl-Met-Leu-Phe (f-MLP). This inhibitory effect mediated by pYV did not affect receptor-independent O2- production by granulocytes in response to phorbol myristate acetate, indicating that NADPH activity remained unaffected after activation of protein kinase C. The inhibition of f-MLP-induced O2- production by granulocytes depends on the secretion of Yops and not on the expression of YadA. Insertional inactivation of the yopH gene abrogated the inhibition of phagocytosis of antibody- and complement-opsonized Y. enterocolitica by human granulocytes but not of the f-MLP-induced O2- production by granulocytes or tyrosine phosphorylation of granulocyte proteins. These findings suggest that the specific targets for YopH are not present in f-MLP receptor-linked signal transduction and that other Yop-mediated mechanisms are involved.  (+info)

(6/25659) Complete nucleotide sequence of the 27-kilobase virulence related locus (vrl) of Dichelobacter nodosus: evidence for extrachromosomal origin.

The vrl locus is preferentially associated with virulent isolates of the ovine footrot pathogen, Dichelobacter nodosus. The complete nucleotide sequence of this 27.1-kb region has now been determined. The data reveal that the locus has a G+C content much higher than the rest of the D. nodosus chromosome and contains 22 open reading frames (ORFs) encoding products including a putative adenine-specific methylase, two potential DEAH ATP-dependent helicases, and two products with sequence similarity to a bacteriophage resistance system. These ORFs are all in the same orientation, and most are either overlapping or separated by only a few nucleotides, suggesting that they comprise an operon and are translationally coupled. Expression vector studies have led to the identification of proteins that correspond to many of these ORFs. These data, in combination with evidence of insertion of vrl into the 3' end of an ssrA gene, are consistent with the hypothesis that the vrl locus was derived from the insertion of a bacteriophage or plasmid into the D. nodosus genome.  (+info)

(7/25659) Genetic characterization of a new type IV-A pilus gene cluster found in both classical and El Tor biotypes of Vibrio cholerae.

The Vibrio cholerae genome contains a 5.4-kb pil gene cluster that resembles the Aeromonas hydrophila tap gene cluster and other type IV-A pilus assembly operons. The region consists of five complete open reading frames designated pilABCD and yacE, based on the nomenclature of related genes from Pseudomonas aeruginosa and Escherichia coli K-12. This cluster is present in both classical and El Tor biotypes, and the pilA and pilD genes are 100% conserved. The pilA gene encodes a putative type IV pilus subunit. However, deletion of pilA had no effect on either colonization of infant mice or adherence to HEp-2 cells, demonstrating that pilA does not encode the primary subunit of a pilus essential for these processes. The pilD gene product is similar to other type IV prepilin peptidases, proteins that process type IV signal sequences. Mutational analysis of the pilD gene showed that pilD is essential for secretion of cholera toxin and hemagglutinin-protease, mannose-sensitive hemagglutination (MSHA), production of toxin-coregulated pili, and colonization of infant mice. Defects in these functions are likely due to the lack of processing of N termini of four Eps secretion proteins, four proteins of the MSHA cluster, and TcpB, all of which contain type IV-A leader sequences. Some pilD mutants also showed reduced adherence to HEp-2 cells, but this defect could not be complemented in trans, indicating that the defect may not be directly due to a loss of pilD. Taken together, these data demonstrate the effectiveness of the V. cholerae genome project for rapid identification and characterization of potential virulence factors.  (+info)

(8/25659) Characterization of Moraxella (Branhamella) catarrhalis lbpB, lbpA, and lactoferrin receptor orf3 isogenic mutants.

Pathogenic members of the family Neisseriaceae produce specific receptors to acquire iron from their host's lactoferrin and transferrin. Recently, putative Moraxella catarrhalis lactoferrin receptor genes and a third open reading frame (lbpB, lbpA, and orf3) were cloned and sequenced. We describe the preliminary characterization of isogenic mutants deficient in LbpB, LbpA, or Orf3 protein.  (+info)