The major Vibrio cholerae autoinducer and its role in virulence factor production.
ABSTRACT Vibrio cholerae, the causative agent of the human disease cholera, uses cell-to-cell communication to control pathogenicity and biofilm formation. This process, known as quorum sensing, relies on the secretion and detection of signalling molecules called autoinducers. At low cell density V. cholerae activates the expression of virulence factors and forms biofilms. At high cell density the accumulation of two quorum-sensing autoinducers represses these traits. These two autoinducers, cholerae autoinducer-1 (CAI-1) and autoinducer-2 (AI-2), function synergistically to control gene regulation, although CAI-1 is the stronger of the two signals. V. cholerae AI-2 is the furanosyl borate diester (2S,4S)-2-methyl-2,3,3,4-tetrahydroxytetrahydrofuran borate. Here we describe the purification of CAI-1 and identify the molecule as (S)-3-hydroxytridecan-4-one, a new type of bacterial autoinducer. We provide a synthetic route to both the R and S isomers of CAI-1 as well as simple homologues, and we evaluate their relative activities. Synthetic (S)-3-hydroxytridecan-4-one functions as effectively as natural CAI-1 in repressing production of the canonical virulence factor TCP (toxin co-regulated pilus). These findings suggest that CAI-1 could be used as a therapy to prevent cholera infection and, furthermore, that strategies to manipulate bacterial quorum sensing hold promise in the clinical arena.
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ABSTRACT: Cyclic dipeptides (CDPs) are a group of hormone-like molecules that are evolutionarily conserved from bacteria to humans. In bacteria, CDPs are used in quorum sensing (QS) to communicate information about population size and to regulate a behavioural switch from symbiosis with their host to virulence. In mammals, CDPs have been shown to act on glial cells (macrophage-like cells) to control a conceptually homologous behavioural switch between homeostatic and inflammatory modes, with implications for the control of neurodegenerative disease. Here we argue that, because of their capacity to regulate inflammation via glial cells and induce a protective response in neuronal cells, CDPs have potential therapeutic utility in an array of inflammatory diseases.Trends in Molecular Medicine 09/2014; · 10.11 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Black band disease (BBD) of corals is a complex polymicrobial disease considered to be a threat to coral reef health, as it can lead to mortality of massive reef-building corals. The BBD community is dominated by gliding, filamentous cyanobacteria with a highly diverse population of heterotrophic bacteria. Microbial interactions such as quorum sensing (QS) and antimicrobial production may be involved in BBD disease pathogenesis. In this study, BBD (whole community) samples, as well as 199 bacterial isolates from BBD, the surface mucopolysaccharide layer (SML) of apparently healthy corals, and SML of apparently healthy areas of BBD-infected corals were screened for the production of acyl homoserine lactones (AHLs) and for autoinducer-2 (AI-2) activity using three bacterial reporter strains. AHLs were detected in all BBD (intact community) samples tested and in cultures of 5.5% of BBD bacterial isolates. Over half of a subset (153) of the isolates were positive for AI-2 activity. AHL-producing isolates were further analyzed using LC-MS/MS to determine AHL chemical structure and the concentration of (S)-4,5-dihydroxy-2,3-pentanedione (DPD), the biosynthetic precursor of AI-2. C6-HSL was the most common AHL variant detected, followed by 3OC4-HSL. In addition to QS assays, 342 growth challenges were conducted among a subset of the isolates, with 27% of isolates eliciting growth inhibition and 2% growth stimulation. 24% of BBD isolates elicited growth inhibition as compared to 26% and 32% of the bacteria from the two SML sources. With one exception, only isolates that exhibited AI-2 activity or produced DPD inhibited growth of test strains. These findings demonstrate for the first time that AHLs are present in an active coral disease. It is possible that AI-2 production among BBD and coral SML bacteria may structure the microbial communities of both a polymicrobial infection and the healthy coral microbiome.PLoS ONE 09/2014; 9(9):e108541. · 3.53 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Abstract Cholix toxin from V. cholerae, is the third member of the diphtheria toxin group of mono-ADP-ribosyltransferase bacterial toxins. It shares structural and functional properties with P. aeruginosa exotoxin A and C. diphtheriae diphtheria toxin. Cholix toxin is an important model for the development of antivirulence approaches and therapeutics against these toxins from pathogenic bacteria. Herein, we have used the high-resolution X-ray structure of full-length cholix complexed with NAD(+) to describe the properties of the NAD(+)-binding pocket at the residue level, including the role of crystallographic water molecules in the NAD(+) substrate interaction. The full length apo cholix structure is used to describe the putative NAD(+) binding site(s) and to correlate biochemical with crystallographic data to study the stoichiometry and orientation of bound NAD(+) molecules. We quantitatively describe the NAD(+) substrate interactions on a residue basis for the main 22 pocket residues in cholixf, a glycerol and 5 contact water molecules as part of the recognition surface by the substrate according to the conditions of crystallization. In addition, the dynamic properties of an in silico version of the catalytic domain were investigated in order to understand the lack of electronic density for one of the main flexible loops (R-loop) in the pocket of X-ray complexes. Implications for a rational drug design approach for mART toxins are derived.Journal of biomolecular Structure & Dynamics 01/2015; · 2.98 Impact Factor