Jul 9, 2002

The genes encoding virulence-associated proteins and the capsule of Streptococcus pneumoniae are upregulated and differentially expressed in vivo

Microbiology
Abiodun D OgunniyiJames C Paton

Abstract

The polysaccharide capsule of Streptococcus pneumoniae and several well-characterized virulence proteins are known to contribute to the pathogenesis of pneumococcal disease. However, there is a paucity of data on the expression of their respective genes in vivo. In this study, the relative abundance of the mRNA transcripts of the genes encoding pneumolysin (ply), pneumococcal surface protein A (pspA), pneumococcal surface antigen A (psaA) and choline-binding protein A (cbpA), and of the first gene of the capsular polysaccharide biosynthesis locus (cps2A), was measured in virulent type 2 pneumococci harvested from the blood of BALB/c mice at 12 h and 24 h following intraperitoneal infection. The mRNA levels were then compared, using relative quantitative RT-PCR, with those present in organisms grown in serum broth. The expression of ply was upregulated threefold at 12 h, and 10-fold at 24 h post-infection; the expression of pspA and psaA was upregulated threefold and fivefold, respectively, at 12 h post-infection. Interestingly, the expression of pspA was 36-fold higher at 24 h post-infection whereas the expression of cps2A was upregulated approximately fourfold at 12 and 24 h post-infection. However, cbpA mRNA levels remained c...Continue Reading

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References

Mentioned in this Paper

Pathogenic Aspects
Choline
Mycoplasma pneumoniae
Bacterial Proteins
Pathogenesis
Whole Blood
Pathogenicity
Mice, Inbred BALB C
Microbial Anatomical Capsule Structure
Pneumococcal surface protein A

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