Differential Host Pro-Inflammatory Response to Mycobacterial Cell Wall Lipids Regulated by the Mce1 Operon.
ABSTRACT: The cell wall of wild-type (WT) Mycobacterium tuberculosis (Mtb), an etiologic agent of tuberculosis (TB) and a Mtb strain disrupted in a 13-gene operon mce1 (?mce1) varies by more than 400 lipid species. Here, we examined Mtb lipid-induced response in murine macrophage, as well as in human T-cell subpopulations in order to gain an insight into how changes in cell wall lipid composition may modulate host immune response. Relative to WT Mtb cell wall lipids, the non-polar lipid extracts from ?mce1 enhanced the mRNA expression of lipid-sense nuclear receptors TR4 and PPAR-? and dampened the macrophage expression of genes encoding TNF-?, IL-6, and IL-1?. Relative to untreated control, WT lipid-pre-stimulated macrophages from healthy individuals induced a higher level of CD4-CD8- double negative T-cells (DN T-cells) producing TNF-?. Conversely, compared to WT, stimulation with ?mce1 lipids induced higher mean fluorescence intensity (MFI) in IL-10-producing DN T cells. Mononuclear cells from TB patients stimulated with WT Mtb lipids induced an increased production of TNF-? by CD8+ lymphocytes. Taken together, these observations suggest that changes in mce1 operon expression during a course of infection may serve as a strategy by Mtb to evade the host pro-inflammatory responses.
Project description:Tuberculosis is one of the leading causes of mortality throughout the world. Mycobacterium tuberculosis, the causative agent of human tuberculosis, has developed several strategies involving proteins and other compounds known collectively as virulence factors to subvert human host defences and invade the human host. The Mce proteins are among these virulence-related proteins and are encoded by the mce1, mce2, mce3 and mce4 operons in the genome of M. tuberculosis. It has been proposed that these operons encode ABC-like lipid transporters; however, the nature of their substrates has only been revealed in the case of the Mce4 proteins. Here we found that the knockout of the mce1 operon alters the lipid profile of M. tuberculosis H37Rv and the uptake of palmitic acid. Thin layer chromatography and liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry analysis showed that the mce1 mutant accumulates more mycolic acids than the wild type and complemented strains. Interestingly, this accumulation of mycolic acid is exacerbated when bacteria are cultured in the presence of palmitic acid or arachidonic acid. These results suggest that the mce1 operon may serve as a mycolic acid re-importer.
Project description:An estimated one-third of the world's population is latently infected with Mycobacterium tuberculosis, the etiologic agent of tuberculosis. Here, we demonstrate that, unlike wild-type M. tuberculosis, a strain of M. tuberculosis disrupted in the mce1 operon was unable to enter a stable persistent state of infection in mouse lungs. Instead, the mutant continued to replicate and killed the mice more rapidly than did the wild-type strain. Histological examination of mouse lungs infected with the mutant strain revealed diffusely organized granulomas with aberrant inflammatory cell migration. Murine macrophages infected ex vivo with the mutant strain were reduced in their ability to produce tumor necrosis factor alpha, IL-6, monocyte chemoattractant protein 1, and nitric oxide (NO), but not IL-4. The mce1 mutant strain complemented with the mce1 genes stimulated tumor necrosis factor alpha and NO production by murine macrophages at levels stimulated by the wild-type strain. These observations indicate that the mce1 operon mutant is unable to stimulate T helper 1-type immunity in mice. The hypervirulence of the mutant strain may have resulted from its inability to stimulate a proinflammatory response that would otherwise induce organized granuloma formation and control the infection without killing the organism. The mce1 operon of M. tuberculosis may be involved in modulating the host inflammatory response in such a way that the bacterium can enter a persistent state without being eliminated or causing disease in the host.
Project description:Pathogenic bacteria have evolved highly specialized systems to extract essential nutrients from their hosts. Mycobacterium tuberculosis (Mtb) scavenges lipids (cholesterol and fatty acids) to maintain infections in mammals but mechanisms and proteins responsible for the import of fatty acids in Mtb were previously unknown. Here, we identify and determine that the previously uncharacterized protein Rv3723/LucA, functions to integrate cholesterol and fatty acid uptake in Mtb. Rv3723/LucA interacts with subunits of the Mce1 and Mce4 complexes to coordinate the activities of these nutrient transporters by maintaining their stability. We also demonstrate that Mce1 functions as a fatty acid transporter in Mtb and determine that facilitating cholesterol and fatty acid import via Rv3723/LucA is required for full bacterial virulence in vivo. These data establish that fatty acid and cholesterol assimilation are inexorably linked in Mtb and reveals a key function for Rv3723/LucA in in coordinating thetransport of both these substrates.
Project description:Staphylococcus aureus (SA) is the causative agent of both skin/soft tissue infections as well as invasive bloodstream infections. Though vaccines have been developed to target both humoral and T cell-mediated immune responses against SA, they have largely failed due to lack of protective efficacy. Group 1 CD1-restricted T cells recognize lipid rather than peptide antigens. Previously found to recognize lipids derived from cell wall of Mycobacterium tuberculosis (Mtb), these cells were associated with protection against Mtb infection in humans. Using a transgenic mouse model expressing human group 1 CD1 molecules (hCD1Tg), we demonstrate that group 1 CD1-restricted T cells can recognize SA-derived lipids in both immunization and infection settings. Systemic infection of hCD1Tg mice showed that SA-specific group 1 CD1-restricted T cell response peaked at 10 days post-infection, and hCD1Tg mice displayed significantly decreased kidney pathology at this time point compared with WT control mice. Immunodominant SA lipid antigens recognized by group 1 CD1-restricted T cells were comprised mainly of cardiolipin and phosphatidyl glycerol, with little contribution from lysyl-phosphatidyl glycerol which is a unique bacterial lipid not present in mammals. Group 1 CD1-restricted T cell lines specific for SA lipids also conferred protection against SA infection in the kidney after adoptive transfer. They were further able to effectively control SA replication in vitro through direct antigen presentation by group 1 CD1-expressing BMDCs. Together, our data demonstrate a previously unknown role for group 1 CD1-restricted SA lipid-specific T cells in the control of systemic MRSA infection.
Project description:BACKGROUND: The mce operons play an important role in the entry of M. tuberculosis into macrophages and non-phagocytic cells. Their non-redundant function as well as complex regulation is implied by the phenotype of mce mutants. Recently, mce1 operon was found to extend over 13 genes, fadD5 (Rv0166) being the first gene of the operon. The presence of a non-coding sequence of 200 base pairs between Rv0166 and Rv0167 is peculiar to mce1 among the four mce operons of M.tuberculosis. We have examined the function of this region. RESULTS: We predicted putative promoter activity of the 200 base pairs of non-coding, intergenic region between Rv0166 and Rv0167 in silico using MEME software and designate it as intergenic promoter, IGPr. We demonstrate both promoter activity and a putative negative regulatory function of this fragment by reporter assays carried out in the surrogate host M.smegmatis. We find that the repressive elements not only control the native promoter but also repress a heterologous promoter of M.smegmatis. The higher activity of the intergenic promoter in a clinical isolate in comparison with the wild type sequence from M.tuberculosis H37Rv could be correlated with a point mutation within the negative element. We have mapped two transcription start sites for mce1 operon both of which are utilized in M.tuberculosis H37Rv as well as the clinical isolate VPCI591. Our studies show that the promoter activity in the non-coding region is relevant not only in reporter gene expression but also in the expression of mce1 operon in M. tuberculosis cells grown in synthetic medium. CONCLUSION: The mce operon of M.tuberculosis H37Rv potentially can be transcribed from two promoters P1 and P2, former mapping upstream of Rv0166 and the latter in the non-coding intergenic region between Rv0166 and Rv0167. The transcription initiation from P1 results in a transcript with Rv0166 while that from P2 will be without it. The sequences between the translation start site of Rv0167 and the promoter P2 have a negative regulatory role, as point mutation within the sequence leads to enhanced activity of P2 as well as a heterologous promoter from M.smegmatis. The mutation detected in the clinical isolate VPCI591 therefore behaves like a gain-of-function mutation.
Project description:BACKGROUND: Mycobacterium tuberculosis (Mtb) is able to evade the immune defenses and may persist for years, decades and even lifelong in the infected host. Mtb cell wall components may contribute to such persistence by modulating several pivotal types of immune cells. Dendritic cells (DCs) are the most potent antigen-presenting cells and hence play a crucial role in the initial immune response to infections by connecting the innate with the adaptive immune system. PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We investigated the effects of two of the major mycobacterial cell wall-associated types of glycolipids, mannose-capped lipoarabinomannan (ManLAM) and phosphatidylinositol mannosides (PIMs) purified from the Mtb strains H37Rv and Mycobacterium bovis, on the maturation and cytokine profiles of immature human monocyte-derived DCs. ManLAM from Mtb H37Rv stimulated the release of pro-inflammatory cytokines TNF, IL-12, and IL-6 and expression of co-stimulatory (CD80, CD86) and antigen-presenting molecules (MHC class II). ManLAM from M. bovis also induced TNF, IL-12 and IL-6 but at significantly lower levels. Importantly, while ManLAM was found to augment LPS-induced DC maturation and pro-inflammatory cytokine production, addition of PIMs from both Mtb H37Rv and M. bovis strongly reduced this stimulatory effect. CONCLUSIONS: These results indicate that the mycobacterial cell wall contains macromolecules of glycolipid nature which are able to induce strong and divergent effects on human DCs; i.e while ManLAM is immune-stimulatory, PIMs act as powerful inhibitors of DC cytokine responses. Thus PIMs may be important Mtb-associated virulence factors contributing to the pathogenesis of tuberculosis disease. These findings may also aid in the understanding of some earlier conflicting reports on the immunomodulatory effects exerted by different ManLAM preparations.
Project description:Tuberculosis is a significant global health threat, with one-third of the world's population infected with its causative agent Mycobacterium tuberculosis (Mtb). The emergence of multidrug-resistant (MDR) Mtb that is resistant to the frontline anti-tubercular drugs rifampicin and isoniazid forces treatment with toxic second-line drugs. Currently, ~4% of new and ~21% of previously treated tuberculosis cases are either rifampicin-drug-resistant or MDR Mtb infections1. The specific molecular host-pathogen interactions mediating the rapid worldwide spread of MDR Mtb strains remain poorly understood. W-Beijing Mtb strains are highly prevalent throughout the world and associated with increased drug resistance2. In the early 1990s, closely related MDR W-Beijing Mtb strains (W strains) were identified in large institutional outbreaks in New York City and caused high mortality rates3. The production of interleukin-1? (IL-1?) by macrophages coincides with the shift towards aerobic glycolysis, a metabolic process that mediates protection against drug-susceptible Mtb4. Here, using a collection of MDR W-Mtb strains, we demonstrate that the overexpression of Mtb cell wall lipids, phthiocerol dimycocerosates, bypasses the interleukin 1 receptor, type I (IL-1R1) signalling pathway, instead driving the induction of interferon-? (IFN-?) to reprogram macrophage metabolism. Importantly, Mtb carrying a drug resistance-conferring single nucleotide polymorphism in rpoB (H445Y)5 can modulate host macrophage metabolic reprogramming. These findings transform our mechanistic understanding of how emerging MDR Mtb strains may acquire drug resistance single nucleotide polymorphisms, thereby altering Mtb surface lipid expression and modulating host macrophage metabolic reprogramming.
Project description:BACKGROUND: The presence of four mammalian cell entry (mce) operons in Mycobacterium tuberculosis suggests the essentiality of the functions of the genes in these operons. The differential expression of the four mce operons in different phases of in vitro growth and in infected animals reported earlier from our laboratory further justifies the apparent redundancy for these genes in the genome.Here we investigate the extent of polymorphism in eight genes in the mce1 and mce4 operons of M. tuberculosis from four standard reference strains (H37Rv, H37Ra, LVS (Low Virulent Strain) and BCG) and 112 clinical isolates varying in their drug susceptibility profile, analysed by direct sequencing and Sequenom MassARRAY platform. RESULTS: We discovered 20 single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in the two operons. The comparative analysis of the genes of mce1 and mce4 operons revealed that yrbE1A [Rv0167] was most polymorphic in mce1 operon while yrbE4A [Rv3501c] and lprN [Rv3495c] had the highest number of SNPs in the mce4 operon. Of 20 SNPs, 12 were found to be nonsynonymous and were further analysed for their pathological relevance to M. tuberculosis using web servers PolyPhen and PMut, which predicted five deleterious nonsynonymous SNPs. A mutation from proline to serine at position 359 of the native Mce1A protein was most deleterious as predicted by both PolyPhen and PMut servers. Energy minimization of the structure of native Mce1A protein and mutated protein was performed using InsightII. The mutated Mce1A protein showed structural changes that could account for the effects of this mutation. CONCLUSIONS: Our results show that SNPs in the coding sequences of mce1 and mce4 operons in clinical isolates can be significantly high. Moreover, mce4 operon is significantly more polymorphic than mce1 operon (p < 0.001). However, the frequency of nonsynonymous substitutions is higher in mce1 operon and synonymous substitutions are more in mce4 operon. In silico modeling predict that nonsynonymous SNP at mce1A [Rv0169], a virulence gene could play a pivotal role in causing functional changes in M. tuberculosis that may reflect upon the biology of the bacteria.
Project description:The ubiquitous gasotransmitter hydrogen sulfide (H2S) has been recognized to play a crucial role in human health. Using cystathionine ?-lyase (CSE)-deficient mice, we demonstrate an unexpected role of H2S in Mycobacterium tuberculosis (Mtb) pathogenesis. We showed that Mtb-infected CSE-/- mice survive longer than WT mice, and support reduced pathology and lower bacterial burdens in the lung, spleen, and liver. Similarly, in vitro Mtb infection of macrophages resulted in reduced colony forming units in CSE-/- cells. Chemical complementation of infected WT and CSE-/- macrophages using the slow H2S releaser GYY3147 and the CSE inhibitor DL-propargylglycine demonstrated that H2S is the effector molecule regulating Mtb survival in macrophages. Furthermore, we demonstrate that CSE promotes an excessive innate immune response, suppresses the adaptive immune response, and reduces circulating IL-1?, IL-6, TNF-?, and IFN-? levels in response to Mtb infection. Notably, Mtb infected CSE-/- macrophages show increased flux through glycolysis and the pentose phosphate pathway, thereby establishing a critical link between H2S and central metabolism. Our data suggest that excessive H2S produced by the infected WT mice reduce HIF-1? levels, thereby suppressing glycolysis and production of IL-1?, IL-6, and IL-12, and increasing bacterial burden. Clinical relevance was demonstrated by the spatial distribution of H2S-producing enzymes in human necrotic, nonnecrotic, and cavitary pulmonary tuberculosis (TB) lesions. In summary, CSE exacerbates TB pathogenesis by altering immunometabolism in mice and inhibiting CSE or modulating glycolysis are potential targets for host-directed TB control.
Project description:Mycobacterium tuberculosis (Mtb) imports and metabolizes fatty acids to maintain infection within human macrophages. Although this is a well-established paradigm, the bacterial factors required for fatty acid import are poorly understood. Previously, we found that LucA and Mce1 are required for fatty acid import in Mtb (Nazarova et al., 2017). Here, we identified additional Mtb mutants that have a reduced ability to import a fluorescent fatty acid substrate during infection within macrophages. This screen identified the novel genes as rv2799 and rv0966c as be necessary for fatty acid import and confirmed the central role for Rv3723/LucA and putative components of the Mce1 fatty acid transporter (Rv0200/OmamB, Rv0172/Mce1D, and Rv0655/MceG) in this process.