Article

Variation in the group B Streptococcus CsrRS regulon and effects on pathogenicity.

Division of Infectious Diseases, Children's Hospital Boston, 300 Longwood Ave., Boston, MA 02115, USA.
Journal of bacteriology (Impact Factor: 3.94). 04/2008; 190(6):1956-65. DOI: 10.1128/JB.01677-07
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT CsrRS (or CovRS) is a two-component regulatory system that controls expression of multiple virulence factors in the important human pathogen group B Streptococcus (GBS). We now report global gene expression studies in GBS strains 2603V/R and 515 and their isogenic csrR and csrS mutants. Together with data reported previously for strain NEM316, the results reveal a conserved 39-gene CsrRS regulon. In vitro phosphorylation-dependent binding of recombinant CsrR to promoter regions of both positively and negatively regulated genes suggests that direct binding of CsrR can mediate activation as well as repression of target gene expression. Distinct patterns of gene regulation in csrR versus csrS mutants in strain 2603V/R compared to 515 were associated with different hierarchies of relative virulence of wild-type, csrR, and csrS mutants in murine models of systemic infection and septic arthritis. We conclude that CsrRS regulates a core group of genes including important virulence factors in diverse strains of GBS but also displays marked variability in the repertoire of regulated genes and in the relative effects of CsrS signaling on CsrR-mediated gene regulation. Such variation is likely to play an important role in strain-specific adaptation of GBS to particular host environments and pathogenic potential in susceptible hosts.

0 Bookmarks
 · 
75 Views
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Microbial infection of the amniotic fluid is a significant cause of fetal injury, preterm birth, and newborn infections. Group B Streptococcus (GBS) is an important human bacterial pathogen associated with preterm birth, fetal injury, and neonatal mortality. Although GBS has been isolated from amniotic fluid of women in preterm labor, mechanisms of in utero infection remain unknown. Previous studies indicated that GBS are unable to invade human amniotic epithelial cells (hAECs), which represent the last barrier to the amniotic cavity and fetus. We show that GBS invades hAECs and strains lacking the hemolysin repressor CovR/S accelerate amniotic barrier failure and penetrate chorioamniotic membranes in a hemolysin-dependent manner. Clinical GBS isolates obtained from women in preterm labor are hyperhemolytic and some are associated with covR/S mutations. We demonstrate for the first time that hemolytic and cytolytic activity of GBS is due to the ornithine rhamnolipid pigment and not due to a pore-forming protein toxin. Our studies emphasize the importance of the hemolytic GBS pigment in ascending infection and fetal injury.
    Journal of Experimental Medicine 05/2013; · 13.21 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Living organisms adapt to the dynamic external environment for their survival. Environmental adaptation in prokaryotes is thought to be primarily accomplished by signaling events mediated by two-component systems, consisting of histidine kinases and response regulators. However, eukaryotic-like serine/threonine kinases (STKs) have recently been described to regulate growth, antibiotic resistance and virulence of pathogenic bacteria. This article summarizes the role of STKs and their cognate phosphatases (STPs) in Gram-positive cocci that cause invasive infections in humans. Given that a large number of inhibitors to eukaryotic STKs are approved for use in humans, understanding how serine/threonine phosphorylation regulates virulence and antibiotic resistance will be beneficial for the development of novel therapeutic strategies against bacterial infections.
    Future Microbiology 07/2011; 6(7):747-61. · 4.02 Impact Factor
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Elucidating how serine/threonine phosphatases regulate kinase function and bacterial virulence is critical for our ability to combat these infections. Group B streptococci (GBS) are β-hemolytic Gram-positive bacteria that cause invasive infections in humans. To adapt to environmental changes, GBS encodes signaling mechanisms comprising two component systems and eukaryotic-like enzymes. We have previously described the importance of the serine/threonine kinase Stk1 to GBS pathogenesis. However, how the presence or absence of the cognate serine/threonine phosphatase Stp1 affects Stk1 function and GBS virulence is not known. Here, we show that GBS deficient only in Stp1 expression are markedly reduced for their ability to cause systemic infections, exhibit decreased β-hemolysin/cytolysin activity, and show increased sensitivity to autolysis. Although transcription of genes important for β-hemolysin/cytolysin expression and export is similar to the wild type (WT), 294 genes (excluding stp1) showed altered expression in the stp1 mutant and included autolysin genes. Furthermore, phosphopeptide enrichment analysis identified that 35 serine/threonine phosphopeptides, corresponding to 27 proteins, were unique to the stp1 mutant. This included phosphorylation of ATP synthase, DNA and RNA helicases, and proteins important for cell division and protein synthesis. Collectively, our results indicate that Stp1 is important for appropriate regulation of Stk1 function, hemolysin activity, autolysis, and GBS virulence.
    Journal of Biological Chemistry 11/2011; 286(51):44197-210. · 4.65 Impact Factor

Full-text (2 Sources)

View
19 Downloads
Available from
May 19, 2014