Engineering a soluble high-affinity receptor domain that neutralizes staphylococcal enterotoxin C in rabbit models of disease.
ABSTRACT Superantigens (SAgs) are a class of immunostimulatory exotoxins that activate large numbers of T cells, leading to overproduction of cytokines and subsequent inflammatory reactions and systemic toxicity. Staphylococcal enterotoxin C (SEC), a SAg secreted by Staphylococcus aureus, has been implicated in various illnesses including non-menstrual toxic shock syndrome (TSS) and necrotizing pneumonia. SEC has been shown to cause TSS illness in rabbits and the toxin contributes to lethality associated with methicillin-resistant S.aureus (MRSA) in a rabbit model of pneumonia. With the goal of reducing morbidity and mortality associated with SEC, a high-affinity variant of the extracellular variable domain of the T-cell receptor beta-chain for SEC (∼14 kDa) was generated by directed evolution using yeast display. This protein was characterized biochemically and shown to cross-react with the homologous (65% identical) SAg staphylococcal enterotoxin B (SEB). The soluble, high-affinity T-cell receptor protein neutralized SEC and SEB in vitro and also significantly reduced the bacterial burden of an SEC-positive strain of MRSA (USA400 MW2) in an infective endocarditis model. The neutralizing agent also prevented lethality due to MW2 in a necrotizing pneumonia rabbit model. These studies characterize a soluble high-affinity neutralizing agent against SEC, which is cross-reactive with SEB, and that has potential to be used intravenously with antibiotics to manage staphylococcal diseases that involve these SAgs.
- SourceAvailable from: PubMed Central[Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: Purpose To define global transcriptional responses of Staphylococcus aureus and its codY mutant (CodY is a transcription regulator of virulence and metabolic genes in response to branched-chain amino acids) when growing in bovine aqueous (AH) and vitreous humor (VH) in vitro, and to investigate the impact of codY deletion on S. aureus virulence in a novel murine anterior chamber (AC) infection model. Methods For the in vitro model, differential transcriptomic gene expression of S. aureus and its codY mutant grown in chemically defined medium (CDM), AH, and VH was analyzed. Furthermore, the strains were inoculated into the AC of mice. Changes in bacterial growth, electroretinography and inflammation scores were monitored. Results Bovine AH and VH provide sufficient nutrition for S. aureus growth in vitro. Transcriptome analysis identified 72 unique open reading frames differentially regulated ≥10-fold between CDM, AH, and VH. In the AC model, we found comparable growth of the codY mutant and wild type strains in vivo. Average inflammation scores and retinal function were significantly worse for codY mutant-infected eyes at 24 h post-infection. Conclusion Our in vitro bovine AH and VH models identified likely nutrient sources for S. aureus in the ocular milieu. The in vivo model suggests that control of branched-chain amino acid availability has therapeutic potential in limiting S. aureus endophthalmitis severity.PLoS ONE 10/2014; 9(10):e110872. DOI:10.1371/journal.pone.0110872 · 3.53 Impact Factor
- [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: Staphylococcus aureus and group A Streptococcus secrete a collection of toxins called superantigens (SAgs), so-called because they stimulate a large fraction of an individual's T cells. One consequence of this hyperactivity is massive cytokine release leading to severe tissue inflammation and, in some cases, systemic organ failure and death. The molecular basis of action involves the binding of the SAg to both a T cell receptor (TCR) on a T cell and a class II product of the major histocompatibility complex (MHC) on an antigen presenting cell. This cross-linking leads to aggregation of the TCR complex and signaling. A common feature of SAgs is that they bind with relatively low affinity to the variable region (V) of the beta chain of the TCR. Despite this low affinity binding, SAgs are very potent, as each T cell requires only a small fraction of their receptors to be bound in order to trigger cytokine release. To develop high-affinity agents that could neutralize the activity of SAgs, and facilitate the development of detection assays, soluble forms of the Vβ regions have been engineered to affinities that are up to 3 million-fold higher for the SAg. Over the past decade, six different Vβ regions against SAgs from S. aureus (SEA, SEB, SEC3, TSST-1) or S. pyogenes (SpeA and SpeC) have been engineered for high-affinity using yeast display and directed evolution. Here we review the engineering of these high-affinity Vβ proteins, structural features of the six different SAgs and the Vβ proteins, and the specific properties of the engineered Vβ regions that confer high-affinity and specificity for their SAg ligands.Toxins 02/2014; 6(2):556-74. DOI:10.3390/toxins6020556 · 2.48 Impact Factor
- [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: ABSTRACT Infective endocarditis and kidney infections are serious complications of Staphylococcus aureus sepsis. We investigated the role of superantigens (SAgs) in the development of lethal sepsis, infective endocarditis, and kidney infections. SAgs cause toxic shock syndrome, but it is unclear if SAgs contribute to infective endocarditis and kidney infections secondary to sepsis. We show in the methicillin-resistant S. aureus strain MW2 that lethal sepsis, infective endocarditis, and kidney infections in rabbits are critically dependent on high-level SAgs. In contrast, the isogenic strain lacking staphylococcal enterotoxin C (SEC), the major SAg in this strain, is attenuated in virulence, while complementation restores disease production. SAgs' role in infective endocarditis appears to be both superantigenicity and direct endothelial cell stimulation. Maintenance of elevated blood pressure by fluid therapy significantly protects from infective endocarditis, possibly through preventing bacterial accumulation on valves and increased SAg elimination. These data should facilitate better methods to manage these serious illnesses. IMPORTANCE The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported in 2007 that Staphylococcus aureus is the most significant cause of serious infectious diseases in the United States (R. M. Klevens, M. A. Morrison, J. Nadle, S. Petit, K. Gershman, et al., JAMA 298:1763-1771, 2007). Among these infections are sepsis, infective endocarditis, and acute kidney injury. Infective endocarditis occurs in 30 to 60% of patients with S. aureus bacteremia and carries a mortality rate of 40 to 50%. Over the past decades, infective endocarditis outcomes have not improved, and infection rates are steadily increasing (D. H. Bor, S. Woolhandler, R. Nardin, J. Brusch, D. U. Himmelstein, PLoS One 8:e60033, 2013). There is little understanding of the S. aureus virulence factors that are key for infective endocarditis development and kidney abscess formation. We demonstrate that superantigens are critical in the causation of all three infections. We show that their association results from both superantigenicity and direct toxic effects on endothelial cells, the latter likely contributing to delayed endothelium healing. Our studies contribute significantly to understanding the development of these illnesses and are expected to lead to development of important therapies to treat such illnesses.mBio 06/2013; 4(4). DOI:10.1128/mBio.00494-13 · 6.88 Impact Factor