PMID: 10456886Aug 24, 1999Paper

Role of Mycoplasma penetrans endonuclease P40 as a potential pathogenic determinant

Infection and Immunity
M BendjennatE Bahraoui

Abstract

Recently, we reported the purification to homogeneity and characterization of Ca(2+)- and Mg(2+)-dependent endonuclease P40 produced by Mycoplasma penetrans (M. Bendjennat, A. Blanchard, M. Loutfi, L. Montagnier, and E. Bahraoui, J. Bacteriol. 179; 2210-2220, 1997), a mycoplasma which was isolated for the first time from the urine of human immunodeficiency virus-infected patients. To evaluate how this nuclease could interact with host cells, we tested its effect on CEM and Molt-4 lymphocytic cell lines and on peripheral blood mononuclear cells. We observed that 10(-7) to 10(-9) M P40 is able to mediate a cytotoxic effect. We found that 100% of cells were killed after 24 h of incubation with 10(-7) M P40 while only 40% cytotoxicity was obtained after 72 h of incubation with 10(-9) M P40. Phase-contrast microscopy observations of P40-treated cells revealed morphological changes, including pronounced blebbing of the plasma membrane and cytoplasmic shrinkage characteristic of programmed cell death, which is in agreement with the internucleosomal fragmentation of P40-treated cell DNA as shown by agarose gel electrophoresis. We showed that (125)I-radiolabeled or fluorescein isothiocyanate-labeled P40 was able to bind specifically in ...Continue Reading

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