[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The saliva of ixodid ticks contains a mixture of bioactive molecules that target a wide spectrum of host defense mechanisms to allow ticks to feed on the vertebrate host for several days. Tick salivary proteins cluster in multigenic protein families, and individual family members display redundancy and pluripotency in their action to ameliorate or evade host immune responses. It is now clear that members of different protein families can target the same cellular or molecular pathway of the host physiological response to tick feeding. We present and discuss our hypothesis that redundancy and pluripotency evolved in tick salivary immunomodulators to evade immune recognition by the host while retaining the immunomodulatory potential of their saliva.
Full-text · Article · Jan 2016 · Trends in Parasitology
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Mutual interactions between adipocytes and immune cells in white adipose tissue (WAT) are involved in modulation of lipid metabolism in the tissue and also in response to omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA), which counteract adverse effects of obesity. This complex interplay depends in part on in situ formed anti- as well as pro-inflammatory lipid mediators, but cell types engaged in the synthesis of the specific mediators need to be better characterized. We used tissue fractionation and metabolipidomic analysis to identify cells producing lipid mediators in epididymal WAT of mice fed for 5 weeks obesogenic high-fat diet (lipid content 35% wt/wt), which was supplemented or not by omega-3 PUFA (4.3 mg eicosapentaenoic acid and 14.7 mg docosahexaenoic acid per g of diet). Our results demonstrate selective increase in levels of anti-inflammatory lipid mediators in WAT in response to omega-3, reflecting either their association with adipocytes (endocannabinoid-related N-docosahexaenoylethanolamine) or with stromal vascular cells (pro-resolving lipid mediator protectin D1). In parallel, tissue levels of obesity-associated pro-inflammatory endocannabinoids were suppressed. Moreover, we show that adipose tissue macrophages (ATMs), which could be isolated using magnetic force from the stromal vascular fraction, are not the major producers of protectin D1 and that omega-3 PUFA lowered lipid load in ATMs while promoting their less-inflammatory phenotype. Taken together, these results further document specific roles of various cell types in WAT in control of WAT inflammation and metabolism and they suggest that also other cells but ATMs are engaged in production of pro-resolving lipid mediators in response to omega-3 PUFA.
No preview · Article · Dec 2015 · Biochemical and Biophysical Research Communications
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The marine n-3 fatty acids, eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) exert numerous beneficial effects on health, but their potency to improve treatment of type 2 diabetic (T2D) patients remains poorly characterized. We aimed to evaluate the effect of a combination intervention using EPA + DHA and the insulin-sensitizing drug pioglitazone in overweight/obese T2D patients already treated with metformin.
In a parallel-group, four-arm, randomized trial, 69 patients (66 % men) were assigned to 24-week-intervention using: (i) corn oil (5 g/day; Placebo), (ii) pioglitazone (15 mg/day; Pio), (iii) EPA + DHA concentrate (5 g/day, containing ~2.8 g EPA + DHA; Omega-3), or (iv) pioglitazone and EPA + DHA concentrate (Pio& Omega-3). Data from 60 patients were used for the final evaluation. At baseline and after intervention, various metabolic markers, adiponectin and cytokines were evaluated in serum using standard procedures, EPA + DHA content in serum phospholipids was evaluated using shotgun lipidomics and mass spectrometry, and hyperinsulinemic-euglycemic clamp and meal test were also performed. Indirect calorimetry was conducted after the intervention. Primary endpoints were changes from baseline in insulin sensitivity evaluated using hyperinsulinemic-euglycemic clamp and in serum triacylglycerol concentrations in fasting state. Secondary endpoints included changes in fasting glycemia and glycated hemoglobin (HbA 1c ), changes in postprandial glucose, free fatty acid and triacylglycerol concentrations, metabolic flexibility assessed by indirect calorimetry, and inflammatory markers.
Omega-3 and Pio& Omega-3 increased EPA + DHA content in serum phospholipids. Pio and Pio& Omega-3 increased body weight and adiponectin levels. Both fasting glycemia and HbA 1c were increased by Omega-3, but were unchanged by Pio& Omega-3. Insulin sensitivity was not affected by Omega-3, while it was improved by Pio& Omega-3. Fasting triacylglycerol concentrations and inflammatory markers were not significantly affected by any of the interventions. Lipid metabolism in the meal test and metabolic flexibility were additively improved by Pio& Omega-3.
Besides preventing a modest negative effect of n-3 fatty acids on glycemic control, the combination of pioglitazone and EPA + DHA can be used to improve lipid metabolism in T2D patients on stable metformin therapy.
EudraCT number 2009-011106-42.
Full-text · Article · Dec 2015 · Nutrition & Metabolism
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Bacteria associated with the tick Ixodes ricinus were assessed in specimens unattached or attached to the skin of cats, dogs and humans, collected in the Czech Republic. The bacteria were detected by PCR in 97 of 142 pooled samples including 204 ticks, i.e. 1-7 ticks per sample, collected at the same time from one host. A fragment of the bacterial 16S rRNA gene was amplified, cloned and sequenced from 32 randomly selected samples. The most frequent sequences were those related to Candidatus Midichloria midichlori (71 % of cloned sequences), followed by Diplorickettsia (13 %), Spiroplasma (3 %), Rickettsia (3 %), Pasteurella (3 %), Morganella (3 %), Pseudomonas (2 %), Bacillus (1 %), Methylobacterium (1 %) and Phyllobacterium (1 %). The phylogenetic analysis of Spiroplasma 16S rRNA gene sequences showed two groups related to Spiroplasma eriocheiris and Spiroplasma melliferum, respectively. Using group-specific primers, the following potentially pathogenic bacteria were detected: Borellia (in 20 % of the 142 samples), Rickettsia (12 %), Spiroplasma (5 %), Diplorickettsia (5 %) and Anaplasma (2 %). In total, 68 % of I. ricinus samples (97/142) contained detectable bacteria and 13 % contained two or more putative pathogenic groups. The prevalence of tick-borne bacteria was similar to the observations in other European countries.
No preview · Article · Nov 2015 · Enperimental and Applied Acarology
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Decreased metabolic flexibility, i.e. a compromised ability to adjust fuel oxidation to fuel availability supports development of adverse consequences of obesity. The aims of this study were (i) to learn whether obesity-resistant A/J and obesity-prone C57BL/6J mice differ in their metabolic flexibility right after weaning; and (ii) to characterize possible differences in control of glucose homeostasis in these animals using glucose tolerance tests (GTT). A/J and C57BL/6J mice of both genders were maintained at 20°C and weaned to standard low-fat diet at 30 days of age. During the first day after weaning, using several separate animal cohorts, (i) GTT was performed using 1 or 3 mg glucose/g body weight (BW), while glucose was administered either orally (OGTT) or intraperitoneally (IPGTT) at 20°C; and (ii) INCA was performed, either in a combination with oral gavage of 1 or 7.5 mg glucose/g BW, or during a fasting/re-feeding transition. INCA was conducted either at 20°C or 34°C. Results of both OGTT and IPGTT using 1 mg glucose/g BW at 20°C, and INCA using 7.5 mg glucose/g BW at 34°C, indicated higher glucose tolerance and higher metabolic flexibility to glucose, respectively, and lower fasting glycemia in A/J mice as compared with C57BL/6J mice. Thus, control of whole body glucose metabolism between A/J and C57BL/6J mice represents a phenotypic feature differentiating between the strains right after weaning.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Aims:
The winter beehive debris containing bodies of honeybee parasitic mite Varroa destructor is used for veterinary diagnostics. The Varroa sucking honeybee haemolymph serves as a reservoir of pathogens including bacteria. Worker bees can pick up pathogens from the debris during cleaning activities and spread the infection to healthy bees within the colony. The aim of this study was to detect entomopathogenic bacteria in the Varroa collected from the winter beehive debris.
Methods and results:
Culture-independent approach was used to analyse the mite-associated bacterial community. Total DNA was extracted from the samples of 10 Varroa female individuals sampled from 27 different sites in Czechia. The 16S rRNA gene was amplified using universal bacterial primers, cloned and sequenced, resulting in a set of 596 sequences representing 29 operational taxonomic units (OTU97 ). To confirm the presence of bacteria in Varroa, histological sections of the mites were observed. Undetermined bacteria were observed in the mite gut and fat tissue.
Morganella sp. was the most frequently detected taxon, followed by Enterococcus sp., Pseudomonas sp., Rahnella sp., Erwinia sp., and Arsenophonus sp. The honeybee putative pathogen Spiroplasma sp. was detected at one site and Bartonella-like bacteria were found at four sites. PCR-based analysis using genus-specific primers enabled detection of the following taxa: Enterococcus, Bartonella-like bacteria, Arsenophonus and Spiroplasma.
Significance and impact of the study:
We found potentially pathogenic (Spiroplasma) and parasitic bacteria (Arsenophonus) in mites from winter beehive debris. The mites can be reservoirs of the pathogenic bacteria in the apicultures.
Full-text · Article · Aug 2015 · Journal of Applied Microbiology
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Poly-unsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs) are considered to be healthier than saturated fatty acids (SFAs), but others postulate that especially the ratio of omega-6 to omega-3 PUFAs (n6/n3 ratio) determines health. Health can be determined with biomarkers, but functional health status is likely better reflected by challenge tests that assess metabolic flexibility. The aim of this study was to determine the effect of high-fat diets with different fatty acid compositions, but similar n6/n3 ratio, on metabolic flexibility. Therefore, adult male mice received isocaloric high-fat diets with either predominantly PUFAs (HFpu diet) or predominantly SFAs (HFs diet) but similar n6/n3 ratio for six months, during and after which several biomarkers for health were measured. Metabolic flexibility was assessed by the response to an oral glucose tolerance test, a fasting and re-feeding test and an oxygen restriction test (OxR; normobaric hypoxia). The latter two are non-invasive, indirect calorimetry-based tests that measure the adaptive capacity of the body as a whole. We found that the HFs diet, compared to the HFpu diet, increased mean adipocyte size, liver damage, and ectopic lipid storage in liver and muscle; although, we did not find differences in body weight, total adiposity, adipose tissue health, serum adipokines, whole body energy balance, or circadian rhythm between HFs and HFpu mice. HFs mice were, furthermore, less flexible in their response to both fasting- re-feeding and OxR, while glucose tolerance was indistinguishable. To conclude, the HFs versus the HFpu diet increased ectopic fat storage, liver damage, and mean adipocyte size and reduced metabolic flexibility in male mice. This study underscores the physiological relevance of indirect calorimetry-based challenge tests.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Transmission of pathogens by ticks is greatly supported by tick saliva released during feeding. Dendritic cells (DC) act as immunological sentinels and interconnect the innate and adaptive immune system. They control polarization of the immune response towards Th1 or Th2 phenotype. We investigated whether salivary cystatins from the hard tick Ixodes scapularis, sialostatin L (Sialo L) and sialostatin L2 (Sialo L2), influence mouse dendritic cells exposed to Borrelia burgdorferi and relevant Toll-like receptor ligands.
DCs derived from bone-marrow by GM-CSF or Flt-3 ligand, were activated with Borrelia spirochetes or TLR ligands in the presence of 3 μM Sialo L and 3 μM Sialo L2. Produced chemokines and IFN-β were measured by ELISA test. The activation of signalling pathways was tested by western blotting using specific antibodies. The maturation of DC was determined by measuring the surface expression of CD86 by flow cytometry.
We determined the effect of cystatins on the production of chemokines in Borrelia-infected bone-marrow derived DC. The production of MIP-1α was severely suppressed by both cystatins, while IP-10 was selectively inhibited only by Sialo L2. As TLR-2 is a major receptor activated by Borrelia spirochetes, we tested whether cystatins influence signalling pathways activated by TLR-2 ligand, lipoteichoic acid (LTA). Sialo L2 and weakly Sialo L attenuated the extracellular matrix-regulated kinase (Erk1/2) pathway. The activation of phosphatidylinositol-3 kinase (PI3K)/Akt pathway and nuclear factor-κB (NF-κB) was decreased only by Sialo L2. In response to Borrelia burgdorferi, the activation of Erk1/2 was impaired by Sialo L2. Production of IFN-β was analysed in plasmacytoid DC exposed to Borrelia, TLR-7, and TLR-9 ligands. Sialo L, in contrast to Sialo L2, decreased the production of IFN-β in pDC and also impaired the maturation of these cells.
This study shows that DC responses to Borrelia spirochetes are affected by tick cystatins. Sialo L influences the maturation of DC thus having impact on adaptive immune response. Sialo L2 affects the production of chemokines potentially engaged in the development of inflammatory response. The impact of cystatins on Borrelia growth in vivo is discussed.
Full-text · Article · May 2015 · Parasites & Vectors
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Dietary intake of omega-3 fatty acids is associated with considerable health benefits, including the prevention of metabolic disorders such as cardiovascular disease and type 2 diabetes. Furthermore, incorporation of the main omega-3 fatty acids, eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), at the systemic level has been found to be more efficient when these fatty acids are supplied in the form of marine phospholipids compared to triglycerides. In this work, the uptake of omega-3 fatty acids and their incorporation in specific lipids were studied in adipose, skeletal muscle, and liver tissues of mice given high-fat diets with or without omega-3 supplements in the form of phospholipids or triglycerides using time-of-flight secondary ion mass spectrometry (TOF-SIMS). The results demonstrate significant uptake of EPA and DHA, and the incorporation of these fatty acids in specific lipid molecules, in all three tissue types in response to the dietary omega-3 supplements. Moreover, the results indicate reduced concentrations of arachidonic acid (AA) and depletion of lipids containing AA in tissue samples from mice given supplementary omega-3, as compared to the control mice. The effect on the lipid composition, in particular the DHA uptake and AA depletion, was found to be significantly stronger when the omega-3 supplement was supplied in the form of phospholipids, as compared to triglycerides. TOF-SIMS was found to be a useful technique for screening the lipid composition and simultaneously obtaining the spatial distributions of various lipid classes on tissue surfaces.
Lipid-specific analysis of TOF-SIMS spectra was used to study dietary uptake of omega-3 fatty acids in mouse adipose, muscle and liver tissue. Ion images shows the lateral distribution of molecular species, herephosphocholine (red), protein fragment (green) and diacylglycerol (blue), on the tissue surfaces
No preview · Article · Feb 2015 · Analytical and Bioanalytical Chemistry
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Adipose tissue is present in most vertebrates, including mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibians and most of the fish. This tissue is formed from mesoderm during embryonic development and is comprised of several fat depots around the body. It is composed from adipocytes, the cells forming the majority of the tissue when studied in histological sections, as well as several other cell types, namely preadipocytes, endothelial cells, pericytes and innate immune cells. In all mammals including humans, two types of adipose tissue are recognized, white and brown adipose tissue (WAT and BAT, respectively), which are engaged in two major distinct and opposite functions: energy storage (in WAT) and energy dissipation (in BAT). White adipocytes are spherical unilocular cells, filled by a large lipid droplet, with all cellular organelles packed in a thin cytoplasmic rim in the vicinity of plasma membrane. Brown adipocytes are polygonal multilocular cells, with cytoplasmic space filled with typical mitochondria containing many cristae. Brown adipocytes are marked by the presence of mitochondrial uncoupling protein-1 (UCP1), which mediates cold- and diet-inducible non-shivering thermogenesis that is adrenergically regulated.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Carpoglyphus lactis is a stored product mite infesting saccharide rich stored commodities including dried fruits, wine, beer, milk products, jams and honey. The association with microorganisms can improve the survival of mites on dried fruits.
The microbial communities associated to C. lactis were studied in specimens originating from the packages of dried apricot, plums and figs and compared to the laboratory strain reared on house dust mite diet (HDMd). Clone libraries of bacterial 16S rRNA gene and fungal ITS region were constructed and analyzed by OTU approach. The 16S rRNA gene libraries differed among the compared diets. The sequences classified to the genera Leuconostoc, Elizabethkingia, Ewingella, Erwinia, Bacillus and Serratia were prevailing in mites sampled from the dried fruits. The ITS library showed smaller differences between the laboratory strain on HDMd and the isolates from dried fruits packages, with the exception of the mite strain from dried plums. The population growth was used as an indirect indicator of fitness and decreased in the order from yeast diet to HDMd, and dried fruits.
The treatment and pretreatment of mites by antibiotics did not reveal the presence of antagonistic bacteria which might slow down the C. lactis population growth. The shifts of the microbial community in the gut of C. lactis were induced by the diet changes. The identified yeasts and bacteria are suggested as the main food source of stored product mites on dried fruits.
The study describes the adaptation of C. lactis to feeding on dried fruits including the interaction with microorganisms. We also identified potentially pathogenic bacteria carried by the mites to dried fruits for human consumption. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
Full-text · Article · Dec 2014 · Journal of Applied Microbiology
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The effect of Ixodes ricinus tick saliva on the production of various cytokines and chemokines by mouse splenocytes was tested by a cytokine array. We demonstrated a strong upregulation of three chemokines, monocyte chemoattractant protein-1 (MCP-1), thymus-derived chemotactic agent 3 (TCA-3) and macrophage inflammatory protein 2 (MIP-2). MCP-1 could be induced by tick saliva itself. While TCA-3 and MIP-2 are engaged in Th2 polarization of the host immune response associated with tick feeding, MCP-1 may act as a histamine release factor, increasing blood flow into the feeding lesion thus facilitating tick engorgement in the late, rapid feeding phase.This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
No preview · Article · Dec 2014 · Parasite Immunology
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Type I interferon (IFN), mainly produced by dendritic cells (DC), is critical in the host defence against tick-transmitted pathogens. Here we report that salivary cysteine protease inhibitor from the hard tick Ixodes scapularis, sialostatin L2, affects IFN-β mediated immune reactions in mouse dendritic cells. Following IFN receptor ligation, the Janus activated kinases/signal transducer and activator of transcription (JAK/STAT) pathway is activated. We show that sialostatin L2 attenuates phosphorylation of STATs in spleen dendritic cells upon addition of recombinant IFN-β. LPS stimulated dendritic cells release IFN-β which in turn leads to the induction of IFN-stimulated genes (ISG) through JAK/STAT pathway activation. The induction of two ISG, interferon regulatory factor 7 (IRF-7) and IP-10, was suppressed by sialostatin L2 in LPS-stimulated dendritic cells. Finally, the interference of sialostatin L2 with IFN action led to the enhanced replication of tick-borne encephalitis virus in DC. In summary, we present here that tick salivary cystatin negatively affects IFN-β responses which may consequently increase the pathogen load after transmission via tick saliva.
No preview · Article · Nov 2014 · Parasite Immunology
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: BACKGROUND:Bacteria are associated with the gut, fat bodies and reproductive organs of stored product mites (Acari: Astigmata). The mites are pests due to the production of allergens. Addition of antibiotics to diets can help to characterize the association between mites and bacteria.
METHODOLOGY AND PRINCIPAL FINDINGS:
Ampicillin, neomycin and streptomycin were added to the diets of mites and the effects on mite population growth (Acarus siro, Lepidoglyphus destructor and Tyrophagus putrescentiae) and associated bacterial community structure were assessed. Mites were treated by antibiotic supplementation (1 mgg-1 of diet) for 21 days and numbers of mites and bacterial communities were analyzed and compared to the untreated control. Bacterial quantities, determined by real-time PCR, significantly decreased in antibiotic treated specimens from 5 to 30 times in A. siro and T. putrescentiae, while no decline was observed in L. destructor. Streptomycin treatment eliminated Bartonella-like bacteria in the both A. siro and T. putrescentiae and Cardinium in T. putrescentiae. Solitalea-like bacteria proportion increased in the communities of neomycin and streptomycin treated A. siro specimens. Kocuria proportion increased in the bacterial communities of ampicillin and streptomycin treated A. siro and neomycin and streptomycin treated L. destructor.
The work demonstrated the changes of mite associated bacterial community under antibiotic pressure in pests of medical importance. Pre-treatment of mites by 1 mgg-1 antibiotic diets improved mite fitness as indicated accelerated population growth of A. siro pretreated streptomycin and neomycin and L. destructor pretreated by neomycin. All tested antibiotics supplemented to diets caused the decrease of mite growth rate in comparison to the control diet.