Population genetic analysis of Bartonella bacilliformis isolates from areas of peru where Carrion's disease is endemic and epidemic.
Carrion's disease is caused by infection with the alpha-proteobacterium Bartonella bacilliformis. Distribution of the disease is considered coincident with the distribution of its known vector, the sand fly Lutzomyia verrucarum. Recent epidemics of B. bacilliformis infections associated with atypical symptomatology in nonendemic regions have raised questions regarding the historic and present distribution of this bacterium and the scope of disease that infection causes. Phylogenetic relationships and genomic diversity of 18 B. bacilliformis isolates (10 isolates from a region where Carrion's disease is epidemic, Cuzco, Peru, and 8 isolates from a region where Carrion's disease is endemic, Caraz, Peru) were assessed using genomic data generated by infrequent restriction site PCR and gene sequence analysis of the flagellin gltA and ialB genes. A population genetic analysis of the genomic diversity suggests that what was once considered an epidemic region of Peru did not result from the recent introduction of B. bacilliformis. (+info)
Characterization and expression analysis of the groESL operon of Bartonella bacilliformis.
The groESL operon of Bartonella bacilliformis, a facultative intracellular, Gram-negative bacterium and etiologic agent of Oroya Fever, was characterized. Sequence analysis revealed an operon containing two genes of 294 (groES) and 1632 nucleotides (groEL) separated by a 55-nt intergenic spacer. The operon is preceded by a 72-nt ORF (ORF1) that encodes a hypothetical protein with homology to a portion of the HrcA repressor for groESL. A divergent fumarate hydratase C (fumC) gene lies further upstream. Deduced amino acid sequences for B. bacilliformis GroEL and GroES revealed a high degree of identity with homologues from other Bartonella and alpha-Protebacteria. A single transcriptional start site (TSS) was mapped 79 nucleotides upstream of the groES start codon, regardless of incubation temperature. The TSS was located immediately 5' to a potential controlling inverted repeat of chaperonin expression (CIRCE) element and is preceded by a sigma70-like promoter. The operon is followed by a predicted rho-independent transcriptional terminator. Northern blot analysis indicated that groES and groEL are co-transcribed as a single mRNA of approximately 2.4 kb. A 6-h time course analysis by qRT-PCR showed that groEL expression increases 1.3-fold within 30 min of a temperature upshift from 30 to 37 degrees C, with maximum transcription reached after 60 min (approximately 4.3-fold), followed by a steady decrease to background (30 degrees C) transcription levels by 6 h. Western blot analysis revealed a 1.4- and 1.5-fold increase in GroEL synthesis following a temperature upshift or by inhibiting DNA supercoiling with coumermycin A1, respectively. Functional expression and complementation of temperature-sensitive Escherichia coli groES or groEL mutants with the cloned operon allowed them to grow at otherwise restrictive temperatures. (+info)
Bartonella bacilliformis GroEL: effect on growth of human vascular endothelial cells in infected cocultures.
Bartonella are the only bacteria known to induce angioproliferative lesions of the human vasculature and liver during infection. Previous work from our lab suggests that GroEL participates in the mitogenic response observed in HUVEC cultures supplemented with the soluble fraction of Bartonella bacilliformis. Work in this study shows that exposure to high concentrations of the fraction is actually cytotoxic for HUVECs. To analyze this phenomenon, live B. bacilliformis-HUVEC cocultures were employed to study the effect of excess bacterial GroEL on the host cell during active infection. Four B. bacilliformis strains were generated to produce varying levels of GroEL. HUVEC cocultures with LSS100, a strain that synthesizes markedly greater quantities of GroEL relative to others, significantly accelerates apoptosis of the cocultured HUVECs relative to other strains. Acceleration of apoptosis can be inhibited by Z-VAD-FMK, a pan-caspase inhibitor. Time course data show that, at 18 h of infection, both LSS100 and control strains significantly inhibit spontaneous apoptosis of cocultured HUVECs, as previously reported for other Bartonella species. However, by 48 h, LSS100 significantly increases apoptosis of the host cell. We hypothesize that intracellular Bartonella GroEL functions as an Hsp60 analogue, a eukaryotic orthologue known to accelerate pro-caspase 3 activation by enhancing its vulnerability to upstream activator caspases. These data suggest another strategy whereby Bartonella may regulate host cell growth. (+info)
Molecular mechanisms of resistance to antibiotics in Bartonella bacilliformis.
OBJECTIVES: Bartonella bacilliformis is the aetiological agent of Carrion's disease. Although ciprofloxacin, rifampicin and erythromycin have been successfully used in the treatment of the disease, failures and relapses have been reported. The objective of our study was to select in vitro mutants resistant to antibiotics in order to determine the frequency of mutations and to characterize the mechanism of resistance at the molecular level. METHODS: Antibiotic-resistant mutants were selected by serial passages of bacteria on blood agar plates containing antibiotics. Candidate genes involved in resistance were amplified and sequenced and compared in order to look at mutations associated with antibiotic resistance. RESULTS: Ciprofloxacin-, rifampicin- and erythromycin-resistant mutants were obtained after five, three and four passages, respectively. Conversely, no mutant was obtained with either gentamicin or doxycycline even after 16 passages. The ciprofloxacin mutant contained an amino acid change at position 87 (Asp --> Asn) in its quinolone resistance-determining region of the DNA gyrase protein, whereas the rifampicin-resistant strain had an amino acid change at position 531 (Ser --> Phe) in the rifampicin resistance-determining region of the rpoB gene. Similarly, the erythromycin-resistant mutant showed an A2058G mutation in the 23S rRNA gene. CONCLUSIONS: According with the current knowledge on the treatment of human bartonellosis, we believe that doxycycline in association with gentamicin may be the preferred regimen for the treatment of the acute and eruptive stages of Carrion's disease, but clinical trials are warranted to support our findings. (+info)
Isolation and characterization of Bartonella bacilliformis from an expatriate Ecuadorian.
Carrion's disease is typically biphasic with acute febrile illness characterized by bacteremia and severe hemolytic anemia (Oroya fever), followed by benign, chronic cutaneous lesions (verruga peruana). The causative agent, Bartonella bacilliformis, is endemic in specific regions of Peru and Ecuador. We describe atypical infection in an expatriate patient who presented with acute splenomegaly and anemia 3 years after visiting Ecuador. Initial serology and PCR of the patient's blood and serum were negative for Bartonella henselae, Bartonella quintana, and B. bacilliformis. Histology of splenic biopsy was suggestive of bacillary angiomatosis, but immunohistochemistry ruled out B. henselae and B. quintana. Bacilli (isolate EC-01) were subsequently cultured from the patient's blood and analyzed using multilocus sequence typing, protein gel electrophoresis with Western blotting, and an immunofluorescence assay (IFA) against a panel of sera from patients with Oroya fever in Peru. The EC-01 nucleotide sequences (gltA and internal transcribed spacer) and protein band banding pattern were most similar to a subset of B. bacilliformis isolates from the region of Caraz, Ancash, in Peru, where B. bacilliformis is endemic. By IFA, the patient's serum reacted strongly to two out of the three Peruvian B. bacilliformis isolates tested, and EC-01 antigen reacted with 13/20 Oroya fever sera. Bacilliary angiomatosis-like lesions were also detected in the spleen of the patient, who was inapparently infected with B. bacilliformis and who presumably acquired infection in a region of Ecuador where B. bacilliformis was not thought to be endemic. This study suggests that the range of B. bacilliformis may be expanding from areas of endemicity in Ecuador and that infection may present as atypical clinical disease. (+info)
Heterogeneity of susceptibility to fluoroquinolones in Bartonella isolates from Australia reveals a natural mutation in gyrA.
Susceptibility of owl monkeys (Aotus nancymaae) to experimental infection with Bartonella bacilliformis.
Bartonellosis, caused by Bartonella bacilliformis, is a clinically significant disease in parts of South America, where it is characterized by fever and hemolytic anemia during the often-fatal acute stage and warty skin eruptions during chronic disease. In this study, we evaluated owl monkeys (Aotus nancymaae) as a potential model for studying the immunogenicity and pathology of bartonellosis. Two groups of animals (n = 3 per group) received either 9.5 x 10(7) CFU B. bacilliformis by the ID route or 1.1 x 10(6) CFU by the IV route and were followed for 140 d. Animals were evaluated by physical exam, complete blood count or hematocrit (or both); infection was confirmed by Giemsa staining of blood smears, PCR amplification, and blood culture. On days 7 and 21, Giemsa-stained blood smears from both groups contained organisms (1% to 4% of erythrocytes). All blood cultures and PCR tests were negative. Complete blood counts and chemistry panels showed no difference from baseline. Serology revealed a greater than 4-fold increase in the IgM titer (compared with baseline levels) in the 3 animals from the ID group and 1 animal from the IV group. On day 35, a dermal lesion was excised from the inguinal region of 1 monkey from each group, with a second lesion excised on day 84 from the same monkey in the IV group. However the histopathology and immunostaining of these samples were not consistent with B. bacilliformis. The present study shows that owl monkeys can be infected with B. bacilliformis, but additional dosage studies are necessary to evaluate the usefulness of this species as a disease model for human bartonellosis. (+info)
Bartonella bacilliformis, endemic pathogen of the Andean region, is intrinsically resistant to quinolones.