The bacterium Vibrio cholerae, like other human pathogens that reside in environmental reservoirs, survives predation by unicellular eukaryotes. Strains of the O1 and O139 serogroups cause cholera, whereas non-O1͞non-O139 strains cause human infections through poorly defined mechanisms. Using Dictyostelium discoideum as a model host, we have identified a virulence mechanism in a non-O1͞non-O139 V. cholerae strain that involves extracellular translocation of proteins that lack N-terminal hydrophobic leader sequences. Accordingly, we have named these genes ''VAS'' genes for virulence-associated secretion, and we propose that these genes encode a prototypic ''type VI'' secretion system. We show that vas genes are required for cytotoxicity of V. cholerae cells toward Dictyostelium amoebae and mammalian J774 macrophages by a contact-dependent mechanism. A large number of Gram-negative bacterial pathogens carry genes homologous to vas genes and potential effector proteins secreted by this pathway (i.e., hemolysin-coregulated protein and VgrG). Mutations in vas homologs in other bacterial species have been reported to attenuate virulence in animals and cultured macrophages. Thus, the genes encoding the VAS-related, type VI secretion system likely play an important conserved function in microbial pathogenesis and represent an additional class of targets for vaccine and antimicrobial drug-based therapies.Dictyostelium discoideum ͉ type VI secretion ͉ virulence-associated secretion C holera is a severe, life-threatening diarrheal disease caused by Vibrio cholerae strains of the O1 and O139 serogroups. In contrast, non-O1, non-O139 strains of V. cholerae are primarily associated with isolated cases of extra-intestinal infection or gastroenteritis. An exception to this pattern was a large outbreak of a cholera-like illness that occurred in 1968 in Sudan, where an O37 strain of V. cholerae caused 460 cases and 125 deaths (1). The virulence mechanisms of O1 and O139 strains involve the elaboration of extracellular factors such as cholera enterotoxin and toxin coregulated pili. In contrast, the virulence mechanisms used by non-O1, non-O139 strains remain poorly defined (2). Using the social amoeba Dictyostelium discoideum as a model host, we have developed an experimental system designed to identify novel virulence mechanisms from pathogenic non-O1, non-O139 strains.D. discoideum is a eukaryotic organism that seeks out and preys on bacteria through its phagocytic feeding behavior. As such, it has been used as a model eukaryotic cell that mimics a mammalian macrophage in aspects of its cell biology and interaction with microbes. Several environmental pathogenic bacteria, including Legionella pneumophila, Mycobacterium marinum, and Pseudomonas aeruginosa (3), resist Dictyostelium predation by producing factors that either kill amoebae or allow successful intracellular survival and multiplication. In these cases, the same virulence mechanisms operative against mammalian cells have also been implicated in resistance to Dictyosteli...
T4-like myoviruses are ubiquitous, and their genes are among the most abundant documented in ocean systems. Here we compare 26 T4-like genomes, including 10 from non-cyanobacterial myoviruses, and 16 from marine cyanobacterial myoviruses (cyanophages) isolated on diverse Prochlorococcus or Synechococcus hosts. A core genome of 38 virion construction and DNA replication genes was observed in all 26 genomes, with 32 and 25 additional genes shared among the non-cyanophage and cyanophage subsets, respectively. These hierarchical cores are highly syntenic across the genomes, and sampled to saturation. The 25 cyanophage core genes include six previously described genes with putative functions (psbA, mazG, phoH, hsp20, hli03, cobS), a hypothetical protein with a potential phytanoyl-CoA dioxygenase domain, two virion structural genes, and 16 hypothetical genes. Beyond previously described cyanophage-encoded photosynthesis and phosphate stress genes, we observed core genes that may play a role in nitrogen metabolism during infection through modulation of 2-oxoglutarate. Patterns among non-core genes that may drive niche diversification revealed that phosphorus-related gene content reflects source waters rather than host strain used for isolation, and that carbon metabolism genes appear associated with putative mobile elements. As well, phages isolated on Synechococcus had higher genome-wide %G+C and often contained different gene subsets (e.g. petE, zwf, gnd, prnA, cpeT) than those isolated on Prochlorococcus. However, no clear diagnostic genes emerged to distinguish these phage groups, suggesting blurred boundaries possibly due to cross-infection. Finally, genome-wide comparisons of both diverse and closely related, co-isolated genomes provide a locus-to-locus variability metric that will prove valuable for interpreting metagenomic data sets.
We carried out a test sample study to try to identify errors leading to irreproducibility, including incompleteness of peptide sampling, in LC-MS-based proteomics. We distributed a test sample consisting of an equimolar mix of 20 highly purified recombinant human proteins, to 27 laboratories for identification. Each protein contained one or more unique tryptic peptides of 1250 Da to also test for ion selection and sampling in the mass spectrometer. Of the 27 labs, initially only 7 labs reported all 20 proteins correctly, and only 1 lab reported all the tryptic peptides of 1250 Da. Nevertheless, a subsequent centralized analysis of the raw data revealed that all 20 proteins and most of the 1250 Da peptides had in fact been detected by all 27 labs. The centralized analysis allowed us to determine sources of problems encountered in the study, which include missed identifications (false negatives), environmental contamination, database matching, and curation of protein identifications. Improved search engines and databases are likely to increase the fidelity of mass spectrometry-based proteomics.
The development of increasingly high-throughput and sensitive mass spectroscopy-based proteomic techniques provides new opportunities to examine the physiology and pathophysiology of many biologic fluids and tissues. The purpose of this study was to determine protein expression profiles of high-abundance synovial fluid (SF) proteins in health and in the prevalent joint disease osteoarthritis (OA). A cross-sectional study of 62 patients with early OA (n = 21), patients with late OA (n = 21), and control individuals (n = 20) was conducted. SF proteins were separated by using one-dimensional PAGE, and the in-gel digested proteins were analyzed by electrospray ionization tandem mass spectrometry. A total of 362 spots were examined and 135 high-abundance SF proteins were identified as being expressed across all three study cohorts. A total of 135 SF proteins were identified. Eighteen proteins were found to be significantly differentially expressed between control individuals and OA patients. Two subsets of OA that are not dependent on disease duration were identified using unsupervised analysis of the data. Several novel SF proteins were also identified. Our analyses demonstrate no disease duration-dependent differences in abundant protein composition of SF in OA, and we clearly identified two previously unappreciated yet distinct subsets of protein profiles in this disease cohort. Additionally, our findings reveal novel abundant protein species in healthy SF whose functional contribution to SF physiology was not previously recognized. Finally, our studies identify candidate biomarkers for OA with potential for use as highly sensitive and specific tests for diagnostic purposes or for evaluating therapeutic response.
Introduction-Dermatomyositis (DM) is an autoimmune disease involving muscle and skin. Perifascicular atrophy (PFA) of myofibers is a specific and characteristic DM pathological lesion. Interferon-stimulated gene 15 (ISG15) is a ubiquitin-like modifier with a poorly understood immunological role.
Prochlorococcus, an abundant phototroph in the oceans, are infected by members of three families of viruses: myo-, podo- and siphoviruses. Genomes of myo- and podoviruses isolated on Prochlorococcus contain DNA replication machinery and virion structural genes homologous to those from coliphages T4 and T7 respectively. They also contain a suite of genes of cyanobacterial origin, most notably photosynthesis genes, which are expressed during infection and appear integral to the evolutionary trajectory of both host and phage. Here we present the first genome of a cyanobacterial siphovirus, P-SS2, which was isolated from Atlantic slope waters using a Prochlorococcus host (MIT9313). The P-SS2 genome is larger than, and considerably divergent from, previously sequenced siphoviruses. It appears most closely related to lambdoid siphoviruses, with which it shares 13 functional homologues. The ∼108 kb P-SS2 genome encodes 131 predicted proteins and notably lacks photosynthesis genes which have consistently been found in other marine cyanophage, but does contain 14 other cyanobacterial homologues. While only six structural proteins were identified from the genome sequence, 35 proteins were detected experimentally; these mapped onto capsid and tail structural modules in the genome. P-SS2 is potentially capable of integration into its host as inferred from bioinformatically identified genetic machinery int, bet, exo and a 53 bp attachment site. The host attachment site appears to be a genomic island that is tied to insertion sequence (IS) activity that could facilitate mobility of a gene involved in the nitrogen-stress response. The homologous region and a secondary IS-element hot-spot in Synechococcus RS9917 are further evidence of IS-mediated genome evolution coincident with a probable relic prophage integration event. This siphovirus genome provides a glimpse into the biology of a deep-photic zone phage as well as the ocean cyanobacterial prophage and IS element ‘mobilome’.
Formalin-fixed and paraffin-embedded (FFPE) tissues present a particular challenge for proteomic analysis. Yet, most of the archived tissues in hospitals and tissue banks worldwide are only available in this form. We have developed conditions for removal of the embedding medium and protein digestion, such that informative tryptic peptides are released from fixed proteins which are suitable for analysis by liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry (LC-MS). We demonstrate that the peptide identifications made by this approach compare favorably to those made from matched fresh frozen tissue. Moreover, we demonstrate that a high level of sequence coverage can be observed for proteins of interest.
scite is a Brooklyn-based startup that helps researchers better discover and understand research articles through Smart Citations–citations that display the context of the citation and describe whether the article provides supporting or contrasting evidence. scite is used by students researchers from around the world and is funded in part by the National Science Foundation and the National Institute on Drug Abuse of the National Institutes of Health.