Prophage Induction Is Enhanced and Required for Renal Disease and Lethality in an EHEC Mouse Model.

Department of Microbiology and Immunology, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan, United States of America.
PLoS Pathogens (Impact Factor: 8.06). 03/2013; 9(3):e1003236. DOI: 10.1371/journal.ppat.1003236
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Enterohemorrhagic Escherichia coli (EHEC), particularly serotype O157:H7, causes hemorrhagic colitis, hemolytic uremic syndrome, and even death. In vitro studies showed that Shiga toxin 2 (Stx2), the primary virulence factor expressed by EDL933 (an O157:H7 strain), is encoded by the 933W prophage. And the bacterial subpopulation in which the 933W prophage is induced is the producer of Stx2. Using the germ-free mouse, we show the essential role 933W induction plays in the virulence of EDL933 infection. An EDL933 derivative with a single mutation in its 933W prophage, resulting specifically in that phage being uninducible, colonizes the intestines, but fails to cause any of the pathological changes seen with the parent strain. Hence, induction of the 933W prophage is the primary event leading to disease from EDL933 infection. We constructed a derivative of EDL933, SIVET, with a biosensor that specifically measures induction of the 933W prophage. Using this biosensor to measure 933W induction in germ-free mice, we found an increase three logs greater than was expected from in vitro results. Since the induced population produces and releases Stx2, this result indicates that an activity in the intestine increases Stx2 production.


Available from: Karen Beeri, Mar 03, 2015
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Shiga toxin (Stx) is considered the main virulence factor in Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli (STEC) infections. Previously we reported the expression of biologically active Stx by eukaryotic cells in vitro and in vivo following transfection with plasmids encoding Stx under control of the native bacterial promoter. Since stx genes are present in the genome of lysogenic bacteriophages, here we evaluated the relevance of bacteriophages during STEC infection. We used the non-pathogenic E. coli K12 strain carrying a lysogenic 933W mutant bacteriophage in which the stx operon was replaced by a gene encoding the green fluorescent protein (GFP). Tracking GFP expression using an In Vivo Imaging System (IVIS), we detected fluorescence in liver, kidney, and intestine of mice infected with the recombinant E. coli strain after treatment with ciprofloxacin, which induces the lytic replication and release of bacteriophages. In addition, we showed that chitosan, a linear polysaccharide composed of D-glucosamine residues and with a number of commercial and biomedical uses, had strong anti-bacteriophage effects, as demonstrated in vitro and in vivo. These findings bring promising perspectives for the prevention and treatment of hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS) cases.
    01/2014; 3. DOI:10.12688/f1000research.3984
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: The genome of pathogenic Leptospira interrogans contains two chromosomes. Plasmids and prophages are known to play specific roles in gene transfer in bacteria and can potentially serve as efficient genetic tools in these organisms. Although plasmids and prophage remnants have recently been reported in Leptospira species, their characteristics and potential applications in leptospiral genetic transformation systems have not been fully evaluated. Three extrachromosomal replicons designated lcp1 (65,732 bp), lcp2 (56,757 bp), and lcp3 (54,986 bp) in the L. interrogans serovar Linhai strain 56609 were identified through whole genome sequencing. All three replicons were stable outside of the bacterial chromosomes. Phage particles were observed in the culture supernatant of 56609 after mitomycin C induction, and lcp3, which contained phage-related genes, was considered to be an inducible prophage. L. interrogans-Escherichia coli shuttle vectors, constructed with the predicted replication elements of single rep or rep combined with parAB loci from the three plasmids were shown to successfully transform into both saprophytic and pathogenic Leptospira species, suggesting an essential function for rep genes in supporting auto-replication of the plasmids. Additionally, a wide distribution of homologs of the three rep genes was identified in L. interrogans isolates, and correlation tests showed that the transformability of the shuttle vectors in L. interrogans isolates depended, to certain extent, on genetic compatibility between the rep sequences of both plasmid and host. Three extrachromosomal replicons co-exist in L. interrogans, one of which we consider to be an inducible prophage. The vectors constructed with the rep genes of the three replicons successfully transformed into saprophytic and pathogenic Leptospira species alike, but this was partly dependent on genetic compatibility between the rep sequences of both plasmid and host.
    BMC Genomics 12/2015; 16(1). DOI:10.1186/s12864-015-1321-y · 4.04 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli (STEC) strains are responsible for a variety of clinical syndromes including bloody and non-bloody diarrhea, hemorrhagic colitis, and hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS). Although multiple serotypes of STEC have been isolated from hemorrhagic colitis cases, E. coli O157:H7 is by far the most prevalent serotype associated with HUS. Shiga toxin is the major virulence factor of E. coli O157:H7 and is responsible for the more severe symptoms of the infection. However, the mechanisms involved in the pathogenesis of diarrhea mediated by Stx2 are not well known. In this study, we have determined the effects of E. coli O157:H7 strain 125/99 wild type (wt) on the human colonic mucosa mounted in an Ussing chamber. In response to 125/99wt, an inhibition of water absorption across human colonic mucosa was observed. Histological sections showed severe necrosis with detachment of the surface epithelium, mononuclear inflammatory infiltrate and loss of goblet cells after 1h of incubation with 125/99wt. These alterations were not observed with the isogenic mutant strain lacking stx2 or with the filter-sterilized culture supernatant from the 125/99wt strain. These results indicate that the cell damages in human colon are induced by Stx2, and that Stx2 production is increased by the interaction with bacterial cells. Identification of host cell-derived factors responsible for increasing Stx2 can lead to new strategies for modulating STEC infections. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier GmbH. All rights reserved.
    International journal of medical microbiology: IJMM 03/2015; 305(3). DOI:10.1016/j.ijmm.2015.02.002 · 3.42 Impact Factor