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Intra-species and inter-kingdom signaling of Legionella pneumophila


Hochstrasser, Ramon; Hilbi, Hubert (2017). Intra-species and inter-kingdom signaling of Legionella pneumophila. Frontiers in Microbiology, 8:79.

Abstract

The ubiquitous Gram-negative bacterium Legionella pneumophila parasitizes environ mental amoebae and, upon inhalation, replicates in alveolar macrophages, thus causing a life-threatening pneumonia called "Legionnaires' disease." The opportunistic pathogen employs a bi-phasic life cycle, alternating between a replicative, non-virulent phase and a stationary, transmissive/virulent phase. L. pneumophila employs the Lqs (Legionella quorum sensing) system as a major regulator of the growth phase switch. The Lqs system comprises the autoinducer synthase LqsA, the homologous sensor kinases LqsS and LqsT, as well as a prototypic response regulator termed LqsR. These components produce, detect, and respond to the α-hydroxyketone signaling molecule LAI-1 (Legionella autoinducer-1, 3-hydroxypentadecane-4-one). LAI-1-mediated signal transduction through the sensor kinases converges on LqsR, which dimerizes upon phosphorylation. The Lqs system regulates the bacterial growth phase switch, pathogen-host cell interactions, motility, natural competence, filament production, and expression of a chromosomal "fitness island." Yet, LAI-1 not only mediates bacterial intra-species signaling, but also modulates the motility of eukaryotic cells through the small GTPase Cdc42 and thus promotes inter-kingdom signaling. Taken together, the low molecular weight compound LAI-1 produced by L. pneumophila and sensed by the bacteria as well as by eukaryotic cells plays a major role in pathogen-host cell interactions.

Abstract

The ubiquitous Gram-negative bacterium Legionella pneumophila parasitizes environ mental amoebae and, upon inhalation, replicates in alveolar macrophages, thus causing a life-threatening pneumonia called "Legionnaires' disease." The opportunistic pathogen employs a bi-phasic life cycle, alternating between a replicative, non-virulent phase and a stationary, transmissive/virulent phase. L. pneumophila employs the Lqs (Legionella quorum sensing) system as a major regulator of the growth phase switch. The Lqs system comprises the autoinducer synthase LqsA, the homologous sensor kinases LqsS and LqsT, as well as a prototypic response regulator termed LqsR. These components produce, detect, and respond to the α-hydroxyketone signaling molecule LAI-1 (Legionella autoinducer-1, 3-hydroxypentadecane-4-one). LAI-1-mediated signal transduction through the sensor kinases converges on LqsR, which dimerizes upon phosphorylation. The Lqs system regulates the bacterial growth phase switch, pathogen-host cell interactions, motility, natural competence, filament production, and expression of a chromosomal "fitness island." Yet, LAI-1 not only mediates bacterial intra-species signaling, but also modulates the motility of eukaryotic cells through the small GTPase Cdc42 and thus promotes inter-kingdom signaling. Taken together, the low molecular weight compound LAI-1 produced by L. pneumophila and sensed by the bacteria as well as by eukaryotic cells plays a major role in pathogen-host cell interactions.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, further contribution
Communities & Collections:04 Faculty of Medicine > Institute of Medical Microbiology
Dewey Decimal Classification:570 Life sciences; biology
610 Medicine & health
Language:English
Date:2017
Deposited On:20 Jun 2017 08:26
Last Modified:09 Dec 2017 01:22
Publisher:Frontiers Research Foundation
ISSN:1664-302X
Free access at:PubMed ID. An embargo period may apply.
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.3389/fmicb.2017.00079
PubMed ID:28217110

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