Project description:Staphylococcus aureus subsp. anaerobius is responsible for Morel's disease in animals and a cause of abscess in humans. It is characterized by a microaerophilic growth, contrary to the other strains of S. aureus. The 2,604,446-bp genome (32.7% GC content) of S. anaerobius ST1464 comprises one chromosome and no plasmids. The chromosome contains 2,660 open reading frames (ORFs), 49 tRNAs and three complete rRNAs, forming one complete operon. The size of ORFs ranges between 100 to 4,600 bp except for two ORFs of 6,417 and 7,173 bp encoding segregation ATPase and non-ribosomal peptide synthase, respectively. The chromosome harbors Staphylococcus phage 2638A genome and incomplete Staphylococcus phage genome PT1028, but no detectable CRISPRS. The antibiotic resistance gene for tetracycline was found although Staphylococcus aureus subsp. anaerobius is susceptible to tetracycline in-vitro. Intact oxygen detoxification genes encode superoxide dismutase and cytochrome quinol oxidase whereas the catalase gene is impaired by a stop codon. Based on the genome, in-silico multilocus sequence typing indicates that S. aureus subsp. anaerobius emerged as a clone separated from all other S. aureus strains, illustrating host-adaptation linked to missing functions. Availability of S. aureus subsp. anaerobius genome could prompt the development of post-genomic tools for its rapid discrimination from S. aureus.
Project description:Sunlight influences microbial water quality of surface waters. Previous studies have investigated photoinactivation mechanisms and cellular photostress responses of fecal indicator bacteria (FIB), including Escherichia coli and enterococci, but further work is needed to characterize photostress responses of bacterial pathogens. Here we investigate the photoinactivation of Staphylococcus aureus (strain Newman), a pigmented, waterborne pathogen of emerging concern. We measured photodecay using standard culture-based assays and cellular membrane integrity and investigated photostress response by measuring the relative number of mRNA transcripts of select oxidative stress, DNA repair, and metabolism genes. Photoinactivation experiments were performed in both oxic and anoxic systems to further investigate the role of oxygen-mediated and non-oxygen-mediated photoinactivation mechanisms. S. aureus lost culturability much faster in oxic systems than in anoxic systems, indicating an important role for oxygen in photodecay mechanisms. S. aureus cell membranes were damaged by sunlight exposure in anoxic systems but not in oxic systems, as measured by cell membrane permeability to propidium iodide. After sunlight exposure, S. aureus increased expression of a gene coding for methionine sulfoxide reductase after 12 h of sunlight exposure in the oxic system and after 6 h of sunlight exposure in the anoxic system, suggesting that methionine sulfoxide reductase is an important enzyme for defense against both oxygen-dependent and oxygen-independent photostresses. This research highlights the importance of oxygen in bacterial photoinactivation in environmentally relevant systems and the complexity of the bacterial photostress response with respect to cell structure and transcriptional regulation.IMPORTANCEStaphylococcus aureus is a pathogenic bacterium that causes gastrointestinal, respiratory, and skin infections. In severe cases, S. aureus infection can lead to life-threatening diseases, including pneumonia and sepsis. Cases of community-acquired S. aureus infection have been increasing in recent years, pointing to the importance of considering S. aureus transmission pathways outside the hospital environment. Associations have been observed between recreational water contact and staphylococcal skin infections, suggesting that recreational waters may be an important environmental transmission pathway for S. aureus However, prediction of human health risk in recreational waters is hindered by incomplete knowledge of pathogen sources, fate, and transport in this environment. This study is an in-depth investigation of the inactivation of a representative strain of S. aureus by sunlight exposure, one of the most important factors controlling the fate of microbial contaminants in clear waters, which will improve our ability to predict water quality changes and human health risk in recreational waters.
Project description:Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) is an important colonizer in animals and an opportunistic pathogen in humans. In humans, MRSA can cause infections that might be difficult to treat because of antimicrobial resistance. The use of bacteriophages has been suggested as a potential approach for the control of MRSA colonization to minimize the-often occupational-exposure of humans. The aim of this study was to assess the efficacy of bacteriophage treatment on porcine nasal colonization with MRSA in vitro, in vivo, and ex vivo. The effectiveness of a bacteriophage combination of phage K*710 and P68 was assessed in vitro by incubating them with MRSA V0608892/1 (ST398) measuring the OD600 hourly. To study the in vivo effect, bacteriophages were administered in a gel developed for human application, which contain 109 plaque-forming units (pfu)/mL (K and P68 in a 19.25:1 ratio) for 5 days to piglets (N = 8) that were experimentally colonized with the MRSA strain. Eight piglets experimentally colonized were used as a negative control. The MRSA strain was also used to colonize porcine nasal mucosa explants and bacteriophages were applied to assess the ex vivo efficacy of treatment. Bacteriophages were effective in vitro. In vivo, sixteen piglets were colonized with MRSA but the number of CFU recovered after the application of the bacteriophages in 8 piglets was not reduced compared to the control animals (approx. 105 CFU/swab). In the ex vivo model, 108 CFU were used to establish colonization with MRSA; a reduction of colonization was not observed after application of bacteriophages. However, application of mupirocin both in vivo and ex vivo resulted in a near eradication of MRSA.i) The MRSA strain was killed in the presence of the bacteriophages phage K*710 and P68 in vitro. ii) Bacteriophages did not reduce porcine nasal colonization in vivo or ex vivo. Physiological in vivo and ex vivo conditions may explain these observations. Efficacy in the ex vivo model matched that of the in vivo system.
Project description:Staphylococcus aureus is a commensal bacterium associated with the skin and mucosal surfaces of humans and animals that can also cause chronic infection. The emergence of antibiotic-resistant strains such as methicillin-resistant S. aureus (MRSA) and strains causing chronic intramammary infections (IMI) in cows results in severe human and livestock infections. Conventional approaches to vaccine development have yielded only a few noneffective vaccines against MRSA or IMI strains, so there is a need for improved vaccine development. CD4 T lymphocytes are required for promoting gamma interferon (IFN-γ) mediated immunoglobulin isotype switching in B lymphocytes to produce high-affinity IgG antibodies and IFN-γ-mediated phagocyte activation for an effective resolution of bacterial infection. However, the lack of known CD4 T cell antigens from S. aureus has made it difficult to design effective vaccines. The goal of this study was to identify S. aureus proteins recognized by immune CD4 T cells. Using a reverse genetics approach, 43 antigens were selected from the S. aureus Newman strain. These included lipoproteins, proteases, transcription regulators, an alkaline shock protein, conserved-domain proteins, hemolysins, fibrinogen-binding protein, staphylokinase, exotoxin, enterotoxin, sortase, and protein A. Screening of expressed proteins for recall T cell responses in outbred, immune calves identified 13 proteins that share over 80% sequence identity among MRSA or IMI strains. These may be useful for inclusion in a broadly protective multiantigen vaccine against MRSA or IMI.
Project description:Staphylococcus aureus is an important opportunistic pathogen of humans and animals. It produces extracellular vesicles (EVs) that are involved in cellular communication and enable inter-kingdom crosstalk, the delivery of virulence factors and modulation of the host immune response. The protein content of EVs determines their biological functions. Clarifying which proteins are selected, and how, is of crucial value to understanding the role of EVs in pathogenesis and the development of molecular delivery systems. Here, we postulated that S. aureus EVs share a common proteome containing components involved in cargo sorting. The EV proteomes of five S. aureus strains originating from human, bovine, and ovine hosts were characterised. The clustering of EV proteomes reflected the diversity of the producing strains. A total of 253 proteins were identified, 119 of which composed a core EV proteome with functions in bacterial survival, pathogenesis, and putatively in EV biology. We also identified features in the sequences of EV proteins and the corresponding genes that could account for their packaging into EVs. Our findings corroborate the hypothesis of a selective sorting of proteins into EVs and offer new perspectives concerning the roles of EVs in S. aureus pathogenesis in specific host niches.
Project description:Staphylococcus aureus is an opportunist pathogen that is responsible for numerous types of infections. S. aureus is known for its ability to easily acquire antibiotic resistance determinants. Methicillin-resistant S. aureus (MRSA) is a leading cause of infections both in humans and animals and is usually associated with a multidrug-resistant profile. MRSA dissemination is increasing due to its capability of establishing new reservoirs and has been found in humans, animals and the environment. Despite the fact that the information on the incidence of MRSA in the environment and, in particular, in wild animals, is scarce, some studies have reported the presence of these strains among wildlife with no direct contact with antibiotics. This shows a possible transmission between species and, consequently, a public health concern. The aim of this review is to better understand the distribution, prevalence and molecular lineages of MRSA in European free-living animals.
Project description:Staphylococcus aureus is an opportunistic pathogen of humans and warm-blooded animals and presents a growing threat in terms of multi-drug resistance. Despite numerous studies, the basis of staphylococcal virulence and switching between commensal and pathogenic phenotypes is not fully understood. Using genomics, we show here that S. aureus strains exhibiting virulent (VIR) and non-virulent (NVIR) phenotypes in a chicken embryo infection model genetically fall into two separate groups, with the VIR group being much more cohesive than the NVIR group. Significantly, the genes encoding known staphylococcal virulence factors, such as clumping factors, are either found in different allelic variants in the genomes of NVIR strains (compared to VIR strains) or are inactive pseudogenes. Moreover, the pyruvate carboxylase and gamma-aminobutyrate permease genes, which were previously linked with virulence, are pseudogenized in NVIR strain ch22. Further, we use comprehensive proteomics tools to characterize strains that show opposing phenotypes in a chicken embryo virulence model. VIR strain CH21 had an elevated level of diapolycopene oxygenase involved in staphyloxanthin production (protection against free radicals) and expressed a higher level of immunoglobulin-binding protein Sbi on its surface compared to NVIR strain ch22. Furthermore, joint genomic and proteomic approaches linked the elevated production of superoxide dismutase and DNA-binding protein by NVIR strain ch22 with gene duplications.
Project description:Staphylococcus aureus is a major human pathogen that imposes a great burden on the health care system. In the development of antistaphylococcal modalities intended to reduce the burden of staphylococcal disease, it is imperative to select appropriate models of S. aureus strains when assessing the efficacy of novel agents. Here, using whole-genome sequencing, we reveal that the commonly used strain Newman D2C from the American Type Culture Collection (ATCC) contains mutations that render the strain essentially avirulent. Importantly, Newman D2C is often inaccurately referred to as simply "Newman" in many publications, leading investigators to believe it is the well-described pathogenic strain Newman. This study reveals that Newman D2C carries a stop mutation in the open reading frame of the virulence gene regulator, agrA In addition, Newman D2C carries a single-nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) in the global virulence regulator gene saeR that results in loss of protein function. This loss of function is highlighted by complementation studies, where the saeR allele from Newman D2C is incapable of restoring functionality to an saeR-null mutant. Additional functional assessment was achieved through the use of biochemical assays for protein secretion, ex vivo intoxications of human immune cells, and in vivo infections. Altogether, our study highlights the importance of judiciously screening for genetic changes in model S. aureus strains when assessing pathogenesis or the efficacy of novel agents. Moreover, we have identified a novel SNP in the virulence regulator gene saeR that directly affects the ability of the protein product to activate S. aureus virulence pathways.IMPORTANCE Staphylococcus aureus is a human pathogen that imposes an enormous burden on health care systems worldwide. This bacterium is capable of evoking a multitude of disease states that can range from self-limiting skin infections to life-threatening bacteremia. To combat these infections, numerous investigations are under way to develop therapeutics capable of thwarting the deadly effects of the bacterium. To generate successful treatments, it is of paramount importance that investigators use suitable models for examining the efficacy of the drugs under study. Here, we demonstrate that a strain of S. aureus commonly used for drug efficacy studies is severely mutated and displays markedly reduced pathogenicity. As such, the organism is an inappropriate model for disease studies.