A new PCR followed by MboI digestion for the detection of all variants of the Clostridium perfringens cpb2 gene.

Department of Pathobiology, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Utrecht University, Yalelaan 1, P.O. Box 80.158, 3508 TD Utrecht, The Netherlands.
Veterinary Microbiology (Impact Factor: 2.73). 04/2008; 127(3-4):412-6. DOI: 10.1016/j.vetmic.2007.08.035
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Clostridium perfringens which is a causative agent of several diseases in animals and humans is capable of producing a variety of toxins. Isolates are typed into five types on the basis of the presence of one or more of the four major toxins genes, i.e. cpa, cpb, etx, and iap. A decade ago another toxin termed beta2 (beta2) and its gene (cpb2) were identified. Two alleles of cpb2 are known and a possible link between differences in gene expression and allelic variation has been reported. A correlation between the level of expression and the origin of the isolates has also been suggested. The demonstration and typing of the cpb2 gene in the genome of isolates can be seen as a vital part of research on the role of the beta2 toxin in the pathogenesis of disease. This study describes a PCR with a single primer set which in contrast to published primer sets recognizes both alleles. Subsequent restriction enzyme analysis of the PCR product enables typing of the alleles. Applying this protocol on a total of 102 isolates, a sub-variant was found which occurred only in C. perfringens isolates from pigs and appeared to be the predominant variant found in C. perfringens isolates from this species.

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    ABSTRACT: Clostridium perfringens is a common cause of intestinal disease in animals and humans. Its pathogenicity is attributed to the toxins it can produce, including the beta2 toxin. The presence of cpb2, the gene encoding the beta2 toxin, has been associated with diarrhoea in neonatal piglets and humans. However, the exact role of the beta2 toxin in the development of diarrhoea is still unknown. In this study we investigated the level of cytotoxicity to porcine IPI-21 and human Caco-2 cell-lines caused by porcine and human cpb2-harbouring C. perfringens and the significance of the beta2 toxin for the induction of cell cytotoxicity. Supernatants of porcine cpb2-harbouring C. perfringens strains were cytotoxic to both cell lines. Cell cytotoxicity caused by supernatant of human cpb2-harbouring C. perfringens strains was variable among strains. However, removal of the beta2 toxin by anti-beta2 toxin antibodies or degradation of the beta2 toxin by trypsin did not reduce the cytotoxic effect of any of the supernatants. These data suggest that beta2 toxin does not play a role in the development of cell cytotoxicity in in vitro experiments. In vivo studies are necessary to definitely define the role of beta2 toxin in the development of cell cytotoxicity and subsequent diarrhoea.
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    ABSTRACT: Pore formation is a common mechanism of action for many bacterial toxins. More than one third of clostridial toxins are pore forming toxins (PFTs) belonging to the β-PFT class. They are secreted as soluble monomers rich in β-strands, which recognize a specific receptor on target cells and assemble in oligomers, Then, they undergo a conformational change leading to the formation of a β-barrel, which inserts into the lipid bilayer forming functional pore. According to their structure, clostridial β-PFTs are divided into several families. Clostridial cholesterol-dependent cytolysins form large pores, which disrupt the plasma membrane integrity. They are potent virulence factors mainly involved in myonecrosis. Clostridial heptameric β-PFTs (aerolysin family and staphylococcal α-hemolysin family) induce small pores which trigger signaling cascades leading to different cell responses according to the cell types and toxins. They are mainly responsible for intestinal diseases, like necrotic enteritis, or systemic diseases/toxic shock from intestinal origin. Clostridial intracellularly active toxins exploit pore formation through the endosomal membrane to translocate the enzymatic component or domain into the cytosol. Single chain protein toxins, like botulinum and tetanus neurotoxins, use hydrophobic α-helices to form pores, whereas clostridial binary toxins encompass binding components, which are structurally and functionally related to β-PFTs, but which have acquired the specific activity to internalize their corresponding enzymatic components. Structural analysis suggests that β-PFTs and binding components share a common evolutionary origin.
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    ABSTRACT: Clostridium perfringens is an important pathogen in both human and veterinary medicine. Necrotic enteritis (NE) is the most clinically dramatic bacterial enteric disease of poultry induced by C. perfringens. The pathogenicity of this bacterium is associated with the production of extracellular toxins produced by some of its strains, such as beta2 toxin. The exact role of beta2 toxin in NE pathogenesis is still controversial. In the present study, C. perfringens isolates from healthy and diseased poultry flocks from different parts of Iran were analyzed by PCR assay to determine the presence of all variants of the beta2 toxin gene (cpb2). The products of two positive cpb2 PCR reactions were sequenced, compared to each other and to the cpb2 sequences published in GenBank (by multiple alignment and phylogenetic analysis). The current work represents the first study of cpb2 in poultry C. perfringens isolates in Asia, and reports the highest percentage of cpb2-positive isolates in both apparently healthy chickens (97.7%) and those afflicted with NE (94.4 %). The sequenced isolates were classified as atypical. This study did not show a direct correlation between NE occurrence and cpb2 presence.
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