• Crucial role of the CB3-region of collagen IV in PARF-induced acute rheumatic fever.

      Dinkla, Katrin; Talay, Susanne R; Mörgelin, Matthias; Graham, Rikki M A; Rohde, Manfred; Nitsche-Schmitz, D Patric; Chhatwal, Gursharan S; Department of Microbial Pathogenesis, Helmholtz Centre for Infection Research, Braunschweig, Germany. (2009)
      Acute rheumatic fever (ARF) and rheumatic heart disease are serious autoimmune sequelae to infections with Streptococcus pyogenes. Streptococcal M-proteins have been implicated in ARF pathogenesis. Their interaction with collagen type IV (CIV) is a triggering step that induces generation of collagen-specific auto-antibodies. Electron microscopy of the protein complex between M-protein type 3 (M3-protein) and CIV identified two prominent binding sites of which one is situated in the CB3-region of CIV. In a radioactive binding assay, M3-protein expressing S. pyogenes and S. gordonii bound the CB3-fragment. Detailed analysis of the interactions by surface plasmon resonance measurements and site directed mutagenesis revealed high affinity interactions with dissociation constants in the nanomolar range that depend on the recently described collagen binding motif of streptococcal M-proteins. Because of its role in the induction of disease-related collagen autoimmunity the motif is referred to as "peptide associated with rheumatic fever" (PARF). Both, sera of mice immunized with M3-protein as well as sera from patients with ARF contained anti-CB3 auto-antibodies, indicating their contribution to ARF pathogenesis. The identification of the CB3-region as a binding partner for PARF directs the further approaches to understand the unusual autoimmune pathogenesis of PARF-dependent ARF and forms a molecular basis for a diagnostic test that detects rheumatogenic streptococci.
    • Crystallization and preliminary X-ray diffraction analysis of phosphoglycerate kinase from Streptococcus pneumoniae.

      Bernardo-García, Noelia; Bartual, Sergio G; Fulde, Marcus; Bergmann, Simone; Hermoso, Juan A; Department of Crystallography and Structural Biology, Instituto de Química-Física Rocasolano, CSIC, Serrano 119, 28006 Madrid, Spain. (2011-10-01)
      Phosphoglycerate kinase (PGK) is a widespread two-domain enzyme that plays a critical role in the glycolytic pathway. Several glycolytic enzymes from streptococci have been identified as surface-exposed proteins that are involved in streptococcal virulence by their ability to bind host proteins. This binding allows pneumococcal cells to disseminate through the epithelial and endothelial layers. Crystallization of PGK from Streptococcus pneumoniae yielded orthorhombic crystals (space group I222, unit-cell parameters a = 62.73, b = 75.38, c = 83.63 Å). However, the unit cell of these crystals was not compatible with the presence of full-length PGK. Various analytical methods showed that only the N-terminal domain of PGK was present in the I222 crystals. The ternary complex of PGK with adenylyl imidodiphosphate (AMP-PNP) and 3-phospho-D-glycerate (3PGA) produced monoclinic crystals (space group P2(1), unit-cell parameters a = 40.35, b = 78.23, c = 59.03 Å, β = 96.34°). Molecular replacement showed that this new crystal form contained full-length PGK, thereby indicating the relevance of including substrates in order to avoid proteolysis during the crystallization process.
    • A Csr-type regulatory system, including small non-coding RNAs, regulates the global virulence regulator RovA of Yersinia pseudotuberculosis through RovM.

      Heroven, Ann Kathrin; Böhme, Katja; Rohde, Manfred; Dersch, Petra; Institut für Mikrobiologie, Technische Universität Braunschweig, 38106 Braunschweig, Germany. (2008-06)
      The MarR-type regulator RovA controls expression of virulence genes of Yersinia pseudotuberculosis in response to environmental signals. Using a genetic strategy to discover components that influence rovA expression, we identified new regulatory factors with homology to components of the carbon storage regulator system (Csr). We showed that overexpression of a CsrB- or a CsrC-type RNA activates rovA, whereas a CsrA-like protein represses RovA synthesis. We further demonstrate that influence of the Csr system on rovA is indirect and occurs through control of the LysR regulator RovM, which inhibits rovA transcription. The CsrA protein had also a major influence on the motility of Yersinia, which was independent of RovM. The CsrB and CsrC RNAs are differentially expressed in Yersinia. CsrC is highly induced in complex but not in minimal media, indicating that medium-dependent rovM expression is mediated through CsrC. CsrB synthesis is generally very low. However, overexpression of the response regulator UvrY was found to activate CsrB production, which in turn represses CsrC synthesis independent of the growth medium. In summary, the post-transcriptional Csr-type components were shown to be key regulators in the co-ordinated environmental control of physiological processes and virulence factors, which are crucial for the initiation of Yersinia infections.
    • The CXC chemokine-degrading protease SpyCep of Streptococcus pyogenes promotes its uptake into endothelial cells.

      Kaur, Simran Jeet; Nerlich, Andreas; Bergmann, Simone; Rohde, Manfred; Fulde, Marcus; Zähner, Dorothea; Hanski, Emanuel; Zinkernagel, Annelies; Nizet, Victor; Chhatwal, Gursharan S; et al. (2010-09-03)
      Streptococcus pyogenes expresses the LPXTG motif-containing cell envelope serine protease SpyCep (also called ScpC, PrtS) that degrades and inactivates the major chemoattractant interleukin 8 (IL-8), thereby impairing host neutrophil recruitment. In this study, we identified a novel function of SpyCep: the ability to mediate uptake into primary human endothelial cells. SpyCep triggered its uptake into endothelial cells but not into human epithelial cells originating from pharynx or lung, indicating an endothelial cell-specific uptake mechanism. SpyCep mediated cellular invasion by an endosomal/lysosomal pathway distinct from the caveolae-mediated invasion pathway of S. pyogenes. Recombinant expression and purification of proteolytically active SpyCep and a series of subfragments allowed functional dissection of the domains responsible for endothelial cell invasion and IL-8 degradation. The N-terminal PR domain was sufficient to mediate endothelial cell invasion, whereas for IL-8-degrading activity, the protease domain and the flanking A domain were required. A polyclonal rabbit serum raised against the recombinant protease efficiently blocked the invasion-mediating activity of SpyCep but not its proteolytic function, further indicating that SpyCep-mediated internalization is independent from its enzymatic activity. SpyCep may thus specifically mediate its own uptake as secreted protein into human endothelial cells.
    • Differences in the aromatic domain of homologous streptococcal fibronectin-binding proteins trigger different cell invasion mechanisms and survival rates.

      Rohde, Manfred; Graham, Rikki M; Branitzki-Heinemann, Katja; Borchers, Patricia; Preuss, Claudia; Schleicher, Ina; Zähner, Dorothea; Talay, Susanne R; Fulde, Marcus; Dinkla, Katrin; et al. (2011-03)
      Group A streptococci (GAS, Streptococcus pyogenes) and Group G streptococci (GGS, Streptococcus dysgalactiae ssp. equisimilis) adhere to and invade host cells by binding to fibronectin. The fibronectin-binding protein SfbI from GAS acts as an invasin by using a caveolae-mediated mechanism. In the present study we have identified a fibronectin-binding protein, GfbA, from GGS, which functions as an adhesin and invasin. Although there is a high degree of similarity in the C-terminal sequence of SfbI and GfbA, the invasion mechanisms are different. Unlike caveolae-mediated invasion by SfbI-expressing GAS, the GfbA-expressing GGS isolate trigger cytoskeleton rearrangements. Heterologous expression of GfbA on the surface of a commensal Streptococcus gordonii and purified recombinant protein also triggered actin rearrangements. Expression of a truncated GfbA (lacking the aromatic domain) and chimeric GfbA/SfbI protein (replacing the aromatic domain of SfbI with the GfbA aromatic domain) on S. gordonii or recombinant proteins alone showed that the aromatic domain of GfbA is responsible for different invasion mechanisms. This is the first evidence for a biological function of the aromatic domain of fibronectin-binding proteins. Furthermore, we show that streptococci invading via cytoskeleton rearrangements and intracellular trafficking along the classical endocytic pathway are less persistence than streptococci entering via caveolae.
    • Digitoxin metabolism by rat liver microsomes.

      Schmoldt, A; Benthe, H F; Haberland, G; Poser, W; Poser, S; Eickhoff, K; Piggott, S M; Kerkut, G A; Walker, R J (1975-09-01)
    • Distribution and Antigenicity of Fibronectin Binding Proteins (SfbI and SfbII) of Streptococcus pyogenes Clinical Isolates from the Northern Territory, Australia

      Goodfellow, Alison M.; Hibble, Megan; Talay, Susanne R.; Kreikemeyer, Bernd; Currie, Bart J.; Sriprakash, Kadaba S.; Chhatwal, Gursharan S. (American Society for Microbiology, 2000-01)
    • DnaK from Bifidobacterium animalis subsp. lactis is a surface-exposed human plasminogen receptor upregulated in response to bile salts.

      Candela, Marco; Centanni, Manuela; Fiori, Jessica; Biagi, Elena; Turroni, Silvia; Orrico, Catia; Bergmann, Simone; Hammerschmidt, Sven; Brigidi, Patrizia; Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences, University of Bologna, Italy. (2010-06)
      Bifidobacterium animalis subsp. lactis lives in the gastrointestinal tract of most mammals, including humans. Recently, for the probiotic strain B. animalis subsp. lactis BI07, a dose-dependent plasminogen-binding activity was demonstrated and five putative plasminogen-binding proteins were identified. Here we investigated the role of surface DnaK as a B. animalis subsp. lactis BI07 plasminogen receptor. DnaK was visualized on the bacterial cell surface by transmission electron microscopy. The His-tagged recombinant DnaK protein showed a high affinity for human plasminogen, with an equilibrium dissociation constant in the nanomolar range. The capability to tolerate physiological concentrations of bile salts is a crucial feature for an intestinal symbiont micro-organism. By proteome analysis we demonstrated that the long-term exposure of B. animalis subsp. lactis BI07 to bile salts results in the upregulation of important surface plasminogen receptors such as DnaK and enolase. Moreover, adaptation of B. animalis subsp. lactis BI07 to physiological concentrations of bile salts significantly increased its capacity to interact with the host plasminogen system. By enhancing the bacterial capacity to interact with the host plasminogen, the gut bile environment may facilitate the colonization of the human host by B. animalis subsp. lactis BI07.
    • DNase Sda1 provides selection pressure for a switch to invasive group A streptococcal infection.

      Walker, Mark J; Hollands, Andrew; Sanderson-Smith, Martina L; Cole, Jason N; Kirk, Joshua K; Henningham, Anna; McArthur, Jason D; Dinkla, Katrin; Aziz, Ramy K; Kansal, Rita G; et al. (2007-08)
      Most invasive bacterial infections are caused by species that more commonly colonize the human host with minimal symptoms. Although phenotypic or genetic correlates underlying a bacterium's shift to enhanced virulence have been studied, the in vivo selection pressures governing such shifts are poorly understood. The globally disseminated M1T1 clone of group A Streptococcus (GAS) is linked with the rare but life-threatening syndromes of necrotizing fasciitis and toxic shock syndrome. Mutations in the GAS control of virulence regulatory sensor kinase (covRS) operon are associated with severe invasive disease, abolishing expression of a broad-spectrum cysteine protease (SpeB) and allowing the recruitment and activation of host plasminogen on the bacterial surface. Here we describe how bacteriophage-encoded GAS DNase (Sda1), which facilitates the pathogen's escape from neutrophil extracellular traps, serves as a selective force for covRS mutation. The results provide a paradigm whereby natural selection exerted by the innate immune system generates hypervirulent bacterial variants with increased risk of systemic dissemination.
    • Effects of ionizing radiation on the survival of bacterial spares in artificial martia regolith

      Moeller, Ralf; Rohde, Manfred; Reitz, Günther; Department of Medical Microbiology, Helmholtz Centre for Infection Research, Inhoffenstr. 7, D-38124 Braunschweig, Germany (Science Direct, 2010-04)
    • Entry and intracellular survival of group B streptococci in J774 macrophages.

      Valenti-Weigand, P; Benkel, P; Rohde, Manfred; Chhatwal, G S (1996-07)
    • Exocytotic process as a novel model for mineralization by osteoblasts in vitro and in vivo determined by electron microscopic analysis.

      Rohde, Manfred; Mayer, H; Department of Microbial Pathogenesis, Helmholtz Center for Infection Research, Inhoffenstrasse 7, D-38124 Braunschweig, Germany. manfred.rohde@helmholtz-hzi.de (2007-05)
      The process of biomineralization has been examined during osteoblastic differentiation of bone marrow stroma cells (BMSCs) from embryonic chick in culture and in periosteum itself by a number of different techniques including transmission and scanning electron microscopy. In cell culture of BMSCs at days 20-25, crystals were accumulated extracellularly in the collagen matrix, resulting in large plate-like crystallites and noncollagen associated on the culture disk surface. In contrast, up to days 10-18, mainly intracellular mineralization was visible by numerous needle-like crystal structures in the cell cytoplasm and in vacuoles. After 20-30 days, the crystal content of these vacuoles is released, most probably by membrane fusion to the outside of the cells. Energy-dispersive X-ray analysis (EDX), electron spectroscopic imaging, and electron energy loss spectroscopy demonstrated that Ca, O, and P are located in the intra- and extracellular needle-like crystals. From EDX spectra a Ca/P ratio of 1.3 was estimated for the intracellular structures and a Ca/P ratio of 1.5, for the extracellular material (for comparison, the Ca/P ratio in tibiae is 1.6). X-ray diffraction and quantitative infrared spectral analyses also demonstrated an increase of crystalline bone apatite along the mineralization process. In addition to the finding in vitro, the presence of intracellular needle-like crystals in vacuoles could be demonstrated in vivo in osteoblastic cells of the periosteum in tibia of day 11. The results are in favor of a novel model for mineralization by osteoblasts, in which amorphous Ca/P material is directly secreted via an exocytotic process from vacuoles of the osteoblast, deposited extracellularly, propagated into the collagen fibril matrix, and matured to hydroxyapatite.
    • Experimental selection of long-term intracellular mycobacteria.

      Vázquez, Cristina L; Lerner, Thomas R; Kasmapour, Bahram; Pei, Gang; Gronow, Achim; Bianco, Maria V; Blanco, Federico C; Geffers, Robert; Geffers, Robert; Bigi, Fabiana; et al. (2014-09)
      Some intracellular bacteria are known to cause long-term infections that last decades without compromising the viability of the host. Although of critical importance, the adaptations that intracellular bacteria undergo during this long process of residence in a host cell environment remain obscure. Here, we report a novel experimental approach to study the adaptations of mycobacteria imposed by a long-term intracellular lifestyle. Selected Mycobacterium bovis BCG through continuous culture in macrophages underwent an adaptation process leading to impaired phenolic glycolipids (PGL) synthesis, improved usage of glucose as a carbon source and accumulation of neutral lipids. These changes correlated with increased survival of mycobacteria in macrophages and mice during re-infection and also with the specific expression of stress- and survival-related genes. Our findings identify bacterial traits implicated in the establishment of long-term cellular infections and represent a tool for understanding the physiological states and the environment that bacteria face living in fluctuating intracellular environments.
    • The FbaB-type fibronectin-binding protein of Streptococcus pyogenes promotes specific invasion into endothelial cells.

      Amelung, Silva; Nerlich, Andreas; Rohde, Manfred; Spellerberg, Barbara; Cole, Jason N; Nizet, Victor; Chhatwal, Gursharan S; Talay, Susanne R; Department of Medical Microbiology, Helmholtz Centre for Infection Research, 38124 Braunschweig, Germany. (2011-08)
      Invasive serotype M3 Streptococcus pyogenes are among the most frequently isolated organisms from patients suffering from invasive streptococcal disease and have the potential to invade primary human endothelial cells (EC) via a rapid and efficient mechanism. FbaB protein, the fibronectin-binding protein expressed by M3 S. pyogenes, was herein identified as a potent invasin for EC. By combining heterologous gene expression with allelic replacement, we demonstrate that FbaB is essential and sufficient to trigger EC invasion via a Rac1-dependent phagocytosis-like uptake. FbaB-mediated uptake follows the classical endocytic pathway with lysosomal destination. FbaB is demonstrated to be a streptococcal invasin exhibiting EC tropism. FbaB thus initiates a process that may contribute to the deep tissue tropism and spread of invasive S. pyogenes isolates into the vascular EC lining.
    • first detection of trimethoprim resistance determinant dfrG in Streptococcus pyogenes clinical isolates in India.

      Bergmann, René; Sagar, Vivek; Nitsche-Schmitz, D Patric; Chhatwal, Gursharan S (2012-10)
    • A flagellum-specific chaperone facilitates assembly of the core type III export apparatus of the bacterial flagellum.

      Fabiani, Florian D; Renault, Thibaud T; Peters, Britta; Dietsche, Tobias; Gálvez, Eric J C; Guse, Alina; Freier, Karen; Charpentier, Emmanuelle; Strowig, Till; Franz-Wachtel, Mirita; et al. (2017-08)
      Many bacteria move using a complex, self-assembling nanomachine, the bacterial flagellum. Biosynthesis of the flagellum depends on a flagellar-specific type III secretion system (T3SS), a protein export machine homologous to the export machinery of the virulence-associated injectisome. Six cytoplasmic (FliH/I/J/G/M/N) and seven integral-membrane proteins (FlhA/B FliF/O/P/Q/R) form the flagellar basal body and are involved in the transport of flagellar building blocks across the inner membrane in a proton motive force-dependent manner. However, how the large, multi-component transmembrane export gate complex assembles in a coordinated manner remains enigmatic. Specific for most flagellar T3SSs is the presence of FliO, a small bitopic membrane protein with a large cytoplasmic domain. The function of FliO is unknown, but homologs of FliO are found in >80% of all flagellated bacteria. Here, we demonstrate that FliO protects FliP from proteolytic degradation and promotes the formation of a stable FliP-FliR complex required for the assembly of a functional core export apparatus. We further reveal the subcellular localization of FliO by super-resolution microscopy and show that FliO is not part of the assembled flagellar basal body. In summary, our results suggest that FliO functions as a novel, flagellar T3SS-specific chaperone, which facilitates quality control and productive assembly of the core T3SS export machinery.