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Calprotectin (CP) inhibits bacterial viability through extracellular chelation of transition metals. However, how CP influences general metabolism remains largely unexplored. We show here that CP restricts bioavailable Zn and Fe to the pathogen Acinetobacter baumannii, inducing an extensive multi-metal perturbation of cellular physiology. Proteomics reveals severe metal starvation, and a strain lacking the candidate Zn metallochaperone ZigA possesses altered cellular abundance of multiple essential Zn-dependent enzymes and enzymes in de novo flavin biosynthesis. The ΔzigA strain exhibits decreased cellular flavin levels during metal starvation. Flavin mononucleotide provides regulation of this biosynthesis pathway, via a 3,4-dihydroxy-2-butanone 4-phosphate synthase (RibB) fusion protein, RibBX, and authentic RibB. We propose that RibBX ensures flavin sufficiency under CP-induced Fe limitation, allowing flavodoxins to substitute for Fe-ferredoxins as cell reductants. These studies elucidate adaptation to nutritional immunity and define an intersection between metallostasis and cellular metabolism in A. baumannii.
Copyright © 2019 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Acinetobacter baumannii is a Gram-negative opportunistic pathogen and a leading cause of ventilator-associated pneumonia. Murine models of A. baumannii lung infection allow researchers to experimentally assess A. baumannii virulence and host response. Intranasal administration of A. baumannii models acute lung infection. This chapter describes the methods to test A. baumannii virulence in a murine model of lung infection, including assessing the competitive index of a bacterial mutant and the associated inflammatory responses.
Acinetobacter baumannii is an important nosocomial pathogen capable of causing wound infections, pneumonia, and bacteremia. During infection, A. baumannii must acquire Zn to survive and colonize the host. Vertebrates have evolved mechanisms to sequester Zn from invading pathogens by a process termed nutritional immunity. One of the most upregulated genes during Zn starvation encodes a putative cell wall-modifying enzyme which we named ZrlA. We found that inactivation of zrlA diminished growth of A. baumannii during Zn starvation. Additionally, this mutant strain displays increased cell envelope permeability, decreased membrane barrier function, and aberrant peptidoglycan muropeptide abundances. This altered envelope increases antibiotic efficacy both in vitro and in an animal model of A. baumannii pneumonia. These results establish ZrlA as a crucial link between nutrient metal uptake and cell envelope homeostasis during A. baumannii pathogenesis, which could be targeted for therapeutic development.
Copyright © 2019 Vanderbilt University Medical Center. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Coagulation and inflammation are interconnected, suggesting that coagulation plays a key role in the inflammatory response to pathogens. A phenome-wide association study (PheWAS) was used to identify clinical phenotypes of patients with a polymorphism in coagulation factor X. Patients with this single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) were more likely to be hospitalized with hemostatic and infection-related disorders, suggesting that factor X contributes to the immune response to infection. To investigate this, we modeled infections by human pathogens in a mouse model of factor X deficiency. Factor X-deficient mice were protected from systemic infection, suggesting that factor X plays a role in the immune response to Factor X deficiency was associated with reduced cytokine and chemokine production and alterations in immune cell population during infection: factor X-deficient mice demonstrated increased abundance of neutrophils, macrophages, and effector T cells. Together, these results suggest that factor X activity is associated with an inefficient immune response and contributes to the pathology of infection.
Copyright © 2019 American Society for Microbiology.
is a Gram-negative opportunistic pathogen that causes diverse infections, including pneumonia, bacteremia, and wound infections. Due to multiple intrinsic and acquired antimicrobial-resistance mechanisms, isolates are commonly multidrug resistant, and infections are notoriously difficult to treat. The World Health Organization recently highlighted carbapenem-resistant as a "critical priority" for the development of new antimicrobials because of the risk to human health posed by this organism. Therefore, it is important to discover the mechanisms used by to survive stresses encountered during infection in order to identify new drug targets. In this study, by use of imaging, we identified hydrogen peroxide (HO) as a stressor produced in the lung during infection and defined OxyR as a transcriptional regulator of the HO stress response. Upon exposure to HO, differentially transcribes several hundred genes. However, the transcriptional upregulation of genes predicted to detoxify hydrogen peroxide is abolished in an strain in which the transcriptional regulator is genetically inactivated. Moreover, inactivation of in both antimicrobial-susceptible and multidrug-resistant strains impairs growth in the presence of HO OxyR is a direct regulator of and , which encode the major HO-degrading enzymes in , as confirmed through measurement of promoter binding by recombinant OxyR in electromobility shift assays. Finally, an mutant is less fit than wild-type during infection of the murine lung. This work reveals a mechanism used by this important human pathogen to survive HO stress encountered during infection.
Copyright © 2018 American Society for Microbiology.
Gold nanoparticles (AuNPs) were functionalized for rapid binding of Acinetobacter baumannii (A. baumannii), a Gram-negative bacterium. AuNPs were functionalized with colistin (Col), a polycationic antibiotic, using a two-step self-assembly process, in which heterobifunctional polyethylene glycol (PEG) was used as a linker. Colistin was successfully conjugated to the AuNPs (Col-PEG-AuNP), as validated by dynamic light scattering (DLS) and proton nuclear magnetic resonance (H1 NMR). High angle annular dark field scanning transmission electron microscopy (HAADF-STEM) images, acquired simultaneously with X-ray energy dispersive spectroscopy (EDS) data, confirmed binding of Col-PEG-AuNPs to the cell envelope of A. baumannii. Results generated from a binding assay indicated that Col-PEG-AuNP complexation with A. baumannii occurred rapidly and reached half-maximum saturation in approximately 7 minutes, on average, for all A. baumannii strains evaluated. Quantitative measurement of the kinetics of Col-PEG-AuNP binding to A. baumannii is essential to inform the design of colistin-functionalized magnetic nanoparticles for magnetic separation of nanoparticle-bound A. baumannii.
Iron is an essential metal for all organisms, yet disruption of its homeostasis, particularly in labile forms that can contribute to oxidative stress, is connected to diseases ranging from infection to cancer to neurodegeneration. Iron deficiency is also among the most common nutritional deficiencies worldwide. To advance studies of iron in healthy and disease states, we now report the synthesis and characterization of iron-caged luciferin-1 (ICL-1), a bioluminescent probe that enables longitudinal monitoring of labile iron pools (LIPs) in living animals. ICL-1 utilizes a bioinspired endoperoxide trigger to release d-aminoluciferin for selective reactivity-based detection of Fe with metal and oxidation state specificity. The probe can detect physiological changes in labile Fe levels in live cells and mice experiencing iron deficiency or overload. Application of ICL-1 in a model of systemic bacterial infection reveals increased iron accumulation in infected tissues that accompany transcriptional changes consistent with elevations in both iron acquisition and retention. The ability to assess iron status in living animals provides a powerful technology for studying the contributions of iron metabolism to physiology and pathology.
Acinetobacter baumannii is a Gram-negative bacterium of increasing concern due to its virulence and persistence in combat and healthcare environments. The incidence of both community-acquired and nosocomial A. baumannii infections is on the rise in foreign and domestic healthcare facilities. Treatment options are limited due to the acquisition of multidrug resistance to the few effective antibiotics. Currently, the most effective pharmaceutically based treatment for multidrug-resistant A. baumannii infections is the antibiotic colistin (polymyxin E). To minimize side effects associated with administration of colistin or other toxic antimicrobial agents, we propose the development of a nanotechnology-mediated treatment strategy. In this design-based effort, colistin-functionalized multilayered, inorganic, magnetoplasmonic nanoconstructs were fabricated to bind to the surface of A. baumannii. This result, for the first time, demonstrates a robust, pharmaceutical-based motif for high affinity, composite nanoparticulates targeting the A. baumannii surface. The antibiotic-activated nanomaterials demonstrated cytocompatibility with human cells and no acute bacterial toxicity at nanoparticle to bacterial concentrations <10 000:1. The magnetomotive characteristics of the nanomaterial enabled magnetic extraction of the bacteria. In a macroscale environment, maximal separation efficiencies exceeding 38% were achieved. This result demonstrates the potential for implementation of this technology into micro- or mesofluidic-based separation environments to enhance extraction efficiencies. The future development of such a mesofluidic-based, nanotechnology-mediated platform is potentially suitable for adjuvant therapies to assist in the treatment of sepsis.
The receptor for advanced glycation end products (RAGE) is a pattern recognition receptor capable of recognizing multiple pathogen-associated and danger-associated molecular patterns that contributes to the initiation and potentiation of inflammation in many disease processes. During infection, RAGE functions to either exacerbate disease severity or enhance pathogen clearance depending on the pathogen studied. is an opportunistic human pathogen capable of causing severe infections, including pneumonia and sepsis, in impaired hosts. The role of RAGE signaling in response to opportunistic bacterial infections is largely unknown. In murine models of pneumonia, RAGE signaling alters neither inflammation nor bacterial clearance. In contrast, RAGE mice systemically infected with exhibit increased survival and reduced bacterial burdens in the liver and spleen. The increased survival of RAGE mice is associated with increased circulating levels of the anti-inflammatory cytokine interleukin-10 (IL-10). Neutralization of IL-10 in RAGE mice results in decreased survival during systemic infection that mirrors that of wild-type (WT) mice, and exogenous IL-10 administration to WT mice enhances survival in this model. These findings demonstrate the role for RAGE-dependent IL-10 suppression as a key modulator of mortality from Gram-negative sepsis.
Copyright © 2017 American Society for Microbiology.
Zinc (Zn) is an essential metal that vertebrates sequester from pathogens to protect against infection. Investigating the opportunistic pathogen Acinetobacter baumannii's response to Zn starvation, we identified a putative Zn metallochaperone, ZigA, which binds Zn and is required for bacterial growth under Zn-limiting conditions and for disseminated infection in mice. ZigA is encoded adjacent to the histidine (His) utilization (Hut) system. The His ammonia-lyase HutH binds Zn very tightly only in the presence of high His and makes Zn bioavailable through His catabolism. The released Zn enables A. baumannii to combat host-imposed Zn starvation. These results demonstrate that A. baumannii employs several mechanisms to ensure bioavailability of Zn during infection, with ZigA functioning predominately during Zn starvation, but HutH operating in both Zn-deplete and -replete conditions to mobilize a labile His-Zn pool.
Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.