Mycobacterium tuberculosis subverts the TLR-2-MyD88 pathway to facilitate its translocation into the cytosol.

Rahman A, Sobia P, Gupta N, Kaer LV, Das G
PLoS One. 2014 9 (1): e86886

PMID: 24475192 · PMCID: PMC3903598 · DOI:10.1371/journal.pone.0086886

Mycobacterium tuberculosis (M.tb) has evolved mechanisms to evade its destruction in phagolysosomes, where it successfully survives and replicates within phagocytes. Recent studies have shown that virulent strains of M.tb can translocate from the phagosome into the cytosol of dendritic cells (DC). The molecular mechanisms by which virulent M.tb strains can escape the phagosome remain unknown. Here we show that the virulent M.tb strain H37Rv, but not the vaccine strain Bacille Calmette-Guérin (BCG), escapes from the phagolysosome and enters the cytosol by interfering with the TLR-2-MyD88 signaling pathway. Using H37Rv mutants, we further demonstrate that the region of difference-1 (RD-1) locus and ESAT-6, a gene within the RD-1 locus, play an important role in the capacity of M.tb to migrate from the phagosome to the cytosol of macrophages. H37Rv, BCG, H37RvΔRD1, and H37RvΔESAT6 were able to translocate to the cytosol in macrophages derived from TLR-2- and MyD88-deficient animals, whereas only virulent H37Rv was able to enter the cytosol in macrophages from wild type mice. Therefore, signaling through the TLR-2-MyD88 pathway in macrophages plays an important role in confining M.tb within phagolysomes. Virulent strains of M.tb have evolved mechanisms to subvert this pathway, thus facilitating their translocation to the cytosol and to escape the toxic microenvironment of the phagosome or phagolysosome.

MeSH Terms (15)

Animals Bacterial Translocation Cytosol Digitonin DNA Primers Macrophages, Peritoneal Mice Mice, Inbred C57BL Microscopy, Confocal Mycobacterium tuberculosis Myeloid Differentiation Factor 88 Real-Time Polymerase Chain Reaction Signal Transduction Thioglycolates Toll-Like Receptor 2

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