Characterization of a putative pathogenicity island from bovine Staphylococcus aureus encoding multiple superantigens.
ABSTRACT: Previous studies have demonstrated that a proportion of Staphylococcus aureus isolates from bovine mastitis coproduce toxic shock syndrome toxin (TSST) and staphylococcal enterotoxin C (SEC). In this study, molecular genetic analysis of one such strain, RF122, revealed the presence of a 15,891-bp putative pathogenicity island (SaPIbov) encoding the genes for TSST (tst), the SEC bovine variant (sec-bovine), and a gene (sel) which encodes an enterotoxin-like protein. The island contains 21 open reading frames specifying hypothetical proteins longer than 60 amino acids including an integrase-like gene. The element is bordered by 74-bp direct repeats at the left and right junctions, and the integration site lies adjacent to the 3' end of the GMP synthase gene (gmps) in the S. aureus chromosome. SaPIbov contains a central region of sequence identity with the previously characterized tst pathogenicity island SaPI1 (J. A. Lindsay et al., Mol. Microbiol. 29:527-543, 1998). A closely related strain, RF120, of the same multilocus enzyme electrophoretic type, random amplified polymorphic DNA type, and ribotype, does not contain the island, implying that the element is mobile and that a recent insertion/deletion event has taken place. TSST and TSST/SEC-deficient mutants of S. aureus strain RF122 were constructed by allele replacement. In vitro bovine Vbeta-specific lymphocyte expansion analysis by culture supernatants of wild-type strains and of tst and sec-bovine allele replacement mutants revealed that TSST stimulates BTB13-specific T cells whereas SEC-bovine stimulates BTB93-specific T cells. This suggests that the presence of SaPIbov may contribute to modulation of the bovine immune response.
Project description:Staphylococcus aureus is one of the most important causal agents of bovine mastitis. Population studies on bovine Staphylococcus aureus isolates have identified considerable genetic heterogeneity among strains causing mastitis. The aim of this study was to investigate the contribution of different clonal complexes and the occurrence of virulence factors and resistance determinants within bovine Staphylococcus aureus isolates.A total of 189 Staphylococcus aureus isolates obtained from milk samples of 34 dairy herds in the German Federal State of Thuringia were characterised by microarray technology.The isolates were assigned to eleven different clonal complexes with CC151, CC479 and CC133 being dominant (together 80.5%). The methicillin resistance gene mecA was found in four isolates (2.1%), which belonged to CC398. Enterotoxin genes could be detected in 79.3% of analysed Staphylococcus aureus and 19 isolates (10.1%) harboured a distinct allele of the toxic shock syndrome toxin gene, tst-RF122. The most striking finding of the present study was that almost all except one isolate (151/152) belonging to CC151, CC479 and CC133 harboured the leukocidin genes lukF-P83 and lukM, whereas no further isolates from other lineages possessed these genes.The consistent occurrence of lukF-P83/lukM in the dominating clonal complexes suggests an essential role of this leukocidin in the etiology of bovine mastitis.
Project description:In 2008, an unusual strain of methicillin-sensitive Staphylococcus aureus (MSSA68111), producing both Panton-Valentine leukocidin (PVL) and toxic shock syndrome toxin-1 (TSST-1), was isolated from a fatal case of necrotizing pneumonia. Because PVL/TSST-1 co-production in S. aureus is rare, we characterized the molecular organization of these toxin genes in strain 68111. MSSA68111 carries the PVL genes within a novel temperate prophage we call ?PVLv68111 that is most similar, though not identical, to phage ?PVL--a phage type that is relatively rare worldwide. The TSST-1 gene (tst) in MSSA68111 is carried on a unique staphylococcal pathogenicity island (SaPI) we call SaPI68111. Features of SaPI68111 suggest it likely arose through multiple major recombination events with other known SaPIs. Both ?PVLv68111 and SaPI68111 are fully mobilizable and therefore transmissible to other strains. Taken together, these findings suggest that hypervirulent S. aureus have the potential to emerge worldwide.
Project description:Staphylococcus aureus is an important pathogen manifesting virulence through diverse disease forms, ranging from acute skin infections to life-threatening bacteremia or systemic toxic shock syndromes. In the latter case, the prototypical superantigen is TSST-1 (Toxic Shock Syndrome Toxin 1), encoded by tst(H), and carried on a mobile genetic element that is not present in all S. aureus strains. Transcriptional regulation of tst is only partially understood. In this study, we dissected the role of sarA, sarS (sarH1), RNAIII, rot, and the alternative stress sigma factor sigB (?B). By examining tst promoter regulation predominantly in the context of its native sequence within the SaPI1 pathogenicity island of strain RN4282, we discovered that ?B emerged as a particularly important tst regulator. We did not detect a consensus ?B site within the tst promoter, and thus the effect of ?B is likely indirect. We found that ?B strongly repressed the expression of the toxin via at least two distinct regulatory pathways dependent upon sarA and agr. Furthermore rot, a member of SarA family, was shown to repress tst expression when overexpressed, although its deletion had no consistent measurable effect. We could not find any detectable effect of sarS, either by deletion or overexpression, suggesting that this regulator plays a minimal role in TSST-1 expression except when combined with disruption of sarA. Collectively, our results extend our understanding of complex multifactorial regulation of tst, revealing several layers of negative regulation. In addition to environmental stimuli thought to impact TSST-1 production, these findings support a model whereby sporadic mutation in a few key negative regulators can profoundly affect and enhance TSST-1 expression.
Project description:Staphylococcal toxic shock syndrome is a potentially lethal illness attributed to superantigens produced by Staphylococcus aureus, in particular toxic shock syndrome toxin 1 (TSST-1), but staphylococcal enterotoxins (SEs) are also implicated. The genes encoding these important toxins are carried on mobile genetic elements, and the regulatory networks controlling expression of these toxins remain relatively unexplored. We show here that the highly conserved ClpXP protease stimulates transcription of tst (TSST-1), sec (SEC), and sed (SED) genes in the prototypical strains, SA564 and RN4282. In the wild-type cells, the post-exponential upregulation of toxin gene transcription was proposed to occur via RNAIII-mediated downregulation of the Rot repressor. Contradictive to this model, we showed that the post-exponential induction of tst, sed, and sec transcription did not occur in cells devoid of ClpXP activity, despite the Rot level being diminished. To identify transcriptional regulators with a changed expression in cells devoid of ClpXP activity, RNA sequencing was performed. The RNAseq analysis revealed a number of global virulence regulators that might act downstream of ClpXP, to control expression of tst and other virulence genes. Collectively, the results extend our understanding of the complex transcriptional regulation of the tst, sed, and sec genes.
Project description:Yunnan Baiyao (YB) as a kind of famous Chinese herbal medicine, possessed hemostatic, invigorating the circulation of blood, and anti-inflammatory effects. Identifying strategies to protect patients at risk for hospital-acquired pressure ulcers (HAPU) is essential. Herein, our results showed that YB treatment can effectively reduce the acne wound area and improve efficacy in a comparative study of 60 cases HAPU patients with S. aureus positive of acne wound pathogens. Furthermore, YB inhibited HIa expression and suppressed accessory gene regulator (agr) system controlled by regulatory RNA II and RNA III molecule using pALC1740, pALC1742 and pALC1743 S. aureus strain linked to gfpuvr reporter gene. Moreover, YB downregulated cao mRNA expression and inhibited coagulase activity by RT-PCR, slide and tube coagulase test. Additionally, YB downregulated seb, sec, sed, and tsst-1 mRNA expression to suppress enterotoxin and tsst-1 secretion and adhesion function related genes sarA, icaA, and cidA mRNA expression. Taken together, the data suggest that YB may reduce HAPU via suppressing virulence gene expression and biofilm formation of S. aureus.
Project description:Staphylococcus aureus infective endocarditis (IE) is a fast-progressing and tissue destructive infection of the cardiac endothelium. The superantigens (SAgs) toxic shock syndrome toxin-1 (TSST-1), staphylococcal enterotoxin C (SEC), and the enterotoxin gene cluster (egc) play a novel and essential role in the etiology of S. aureus IE. Recent studies indicate that SAgs act at the infection site to cause tissue pathology and promote vegetation growth. The underlying mechanism of SAg involvement has not been clearly defined. In SAg-mediated responses, immune cell priming is considered a primary triggering event leading to endothelial cell activation and altered function. Utilizing immortalized human aortic endothelial cells (iHAECs), we demonstrate that TSST-1 directly activates iHAECs, as documented by upregulation of vascular and intercellular adhesion molecules (VCAM-1 and ICAM-1). TSST-1-mediated activation results in increased monolayer permeability and defects in vascular re-endothelialization. Yet, stimulation of iHAECs with TSST-1 fails to induce IL-8 and IL-6 production. Furthermore, simultaneous stimulation of iHAECs with TSST-1 and LPS inhibits LPS-mediated IL-8 and IL-6 secretion, even after pre-treatment with the pro-inflammatory cytokines TNF? or IL-1?. IL-8 suppression is not mediated by TSST-1 binding to its canonical receptor MHC-II, supporting current evidence for a non-hematopoietic interacting site on SAgs. Altogether the data suggest that TSST-1 differentially regulates cell-bound and secreted markers of endothelial cell activation that may result in dysregulated innate immune responses during S. aureus IE. Endothelial changes resulting from the action of SAgs can therefore directly contribute to the aggressive nature of S. aureus IE and development of life-threatening complications.
Project description:Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) is a common multidrug-resistant (MDR) pathogen. We herein discussed MRSA and its infections in Krasnoyarsk, Siberian Russia between 2007 and 2011. The incidence of MRSA in 3,662 subjects was 22.0% and 2.9% for healthcare- and community-associated MRSA (HA- and CA-MRSA), respectively. The 15-day mortality rates for MRSA hospital- and community-acquired pneumonia (HAP and CAP) were 6.5% and 50%, respectively. MRSA CAP cases included pediatric deaths; of the MRSA pneumonia episodes available, ?27.3% were associated with bacteremia. Most cases of HA-MRSA examined exhibited ST239/spa3(t037)/SCCmecIII.1.1.2 (designated as ST239Kras), while all CA-MRSA cases examined were ST8/spa1(t008)/SCCmecIV.3.1.1(IVc) (designated as ST8Kras). ST239Kras and ST8Kras strongly expressed cytolytic peptide (phenol-soluble modulin ?, PSM?; and ?-hemolysin, Hld) genes, similar to CA-MRSA. ST239Kras pneumonia may have been attributed to a unique set of multiple virulence factors (MVFs): toxic shock syndrome toxin-1 (TSST-1), elevated PSM?/Hld expression, ?-hemolysin, the staphylococcal enterotoxin SEK/SEQ, the immune evasion factor SCIN/SAK, and collagen adhesin. Regarding ST8Kras, SEA was included in MVFs, some of which were common to ST239Kras. The ST239Kras (strain OC3) genome contained: a completely unique phage, ?Sa7-like (W), with no att repetition; S. aureus pathogenicity island SaPI2R, the first TSST-1 gene-positive (tst+) SaPI in the ST239 lineage; and a super copy of IS256 (?22 copies/genome). ST239Kras carried the Brazilian SCCmecIII.1.1.2 and United Kingdom-type tst. ST239Kras and ST8Kras were MDR, with the same levofloxacin resistance mutations; small, but transmissible chloramphenicol resistance plasmids spread widely enough to not be ignored. These results suggest that novel MDR and MVF+ HA- and CA-MRSA (ST239Kras and ST8Kras) emerged in Siberian Russia (Krasnoyarsk) associated with fatal pneumonia, and also with ST239Kras, a new (Siberian Russian) clade of the ST239 lineage, which was created through stepwise evolution during its potential transmission route of Brazil-Europe-Russia/Krasnoyarsk, thereby selective advantages from unique MVFs and the MDR.
Project description:Cocolonization of human mucosal surfaces causes frequent encounters between various staphylococcal species, creating opportunities for the horizontal acquisition of mobile genetic elements. The majority of Staphylococcus aureus toxins and virulence factors are encoded on S. aureus pathogenicity islands (SaPIs). Horizontal movement of SaPIs between S. aureus strains plays a role in the evolution of virulent clinical isolates. Although there have been reports of the production of toxic shock syndrome toxin 1 (TSST-1), enterotoxin, and other superantigens by coagulase-negative staphylococci, no associated pathogenicity islands have been found in the genome of Staphylococcus epidermidis, a generally less virulent relative of S. aureus. We show here the first evidence of a composite S. epidermidis pathogenicity island (SePI), the product of multiple insertions in the genome of a clinical isolate. The taxonomic placement of S. epidermidis strain FRI909 was confirmed by a number of biochemical tests and multilocus sequence typing. The genome sequence of this strain was analyzed for other unique gene clusters and their locations. This pathogenicity island encodes and expresses staphylococcal enterotoxin C3 (SEC3) and staphylococcal enterotoxin-like toxin L (SElL), as confirmed by quantitative reverse transcription-PCR (qRT-PCR) and immunoblotting. We present here an initial characterization of this novel pathogenicity island, and we establish that it is stable, expresses enterotoxins, and is not obviously transmissible by phage transduction. We also describe the genome sequence, excision, replication, and packaging of a novel bacteriophage in S. epidermidis FRI909, as well as attempts to mobilize the SePI element by this phage.
Project description:Staphylococcus aureus JH4899, a community-acquired methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (CA-MRSA) isolate collected from a patient with systematically disseminated infection, is classified as sequence type 8 and carries the staphylococcal cassette chromosome mec type IVl (SCCmecIVl). It produces TSST-1, SEC, a newly discovered enterotoxin (SE1), and epidermal cell differentiation inhibitor A (EDIN-A). Here, we present the complete genome sequence of the chromosome and a plasmid harboring the se1 and ednA genes.
Project description:Staphylococcus epidermidis is a leading cause of nosocomial infections, majorly resistant to beta-lactam antibiotics, and may transfer several mobile genetic elements among the members of its own species, as well as to Staphylococcus aureus; however, a genetic exchange from S. aureus to S. epidermidis remains controversial. We recently identified two pathogenic clinical strains of S. epidermidis that produce a staphylococcal enterotoxin C3-like (SEC) similar to that by S. aureus pathogenicity islands. This study aimed to determine the genetic environment of the SEC-coding sequence and to identify the mobile genetic elements. Whole-genome sequencing and annotation of the S. epidermidis strains were performed using Illumina technology and a bioinformatics pipeline for assembly, which provided evidence that the SEC-coding sequences were located in a composite pathogenicity island that was previously described in the S. epidermidis strain FRI909, called SePI-1/SeCI-1, with 83.8-89.7% nucleotide similarity. Various other plasmids were identified, particularly p_3_95 and p_4_95, which carry antibiotic resistance genes (hsrA and dfrG, respectively), and share homologies with SAP085A and pUSA04-2-SUR11, two plasmids described in S. aureus. Eventually, one complete prophage was identified, ?SE90, sharing 30 out of 52 coding sequences with the Acinetobacter phage vB_AbaM_IME200. Thus, the SePI-1/SeCI-1 pathogenicity island was identified in two pathogenic strains of S. epidermidis that produced a SEC enterotoxin causing septic shock. These findings suggest the existence of in vivo genetic exchange from S. aureus to S. epidermidis.