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Toxins 2017, 9(10), 336; doi:10.3390/toxins9100336

Effect of Clostridium perfringens β-Toxin on Platelets

Department of Infectious Diseases and Pathobiology, Institute of Animal Pathology, Vetsuisse Faculty, University of Bern, 3012 Bern, Switzerland
Institute of Virology and Immunology, 3012 Bern, Switzerland
Department of Infectious Diseases and Pathobiology, Vetsuisse Faculty, University of Bern, 3012 Bern, Switzerland
Division of Veterinary Anatomy, Vetsuisse Faculty, University of Bern, 3012 Bern; Switzerland
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Harald Genth
Received: 2 October 2017 / Revised: 19 October 2017 / Accepted: 20 October 2017 / Published: 24 October 2017
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Clostridium perfringens β-toxin (CPB) is the major virulence factor of C. perfringens type C causing a hemorrhagic enteritis in animals and humans. In experimentally infected pigs, endothelial binding of CPB was shown to be associated with early vascular lesions and hemorrhage but without obvious thrombosis of affected vessels, suggesting altered hemostasis in the early phase of the disease. The objective of the present study was to investigate the effect of CPB on platelets, with respect to primary hemostasis. Our results demonstrate that CPB binds to porcine and human platelets and forms oligomers resulting in a time- and dose-dependent cell death. Platelets showed rapid ultrastructural changes, significantly decreased aggregation and could no longer be activated by thrombin. This indicates that CPB affects the physiological function of platelets and counteracts primary hemostasis. Our results add platelets to the list of target cells of CPB and extend the current hypothesis of its role in the pathogenesis of C. perfringens type C enteritis. View Full-Text
Keywords: Clostridium perfringens type C; beta-toxin; platelets Clostridium perfringens type C; beta-toxin; platelets

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MDPI and ACS Style

Thiel, A.; Mogel, H.; Bruggisser, J.; Baumann, A.; Wyder, M.; Stoffel, M.H.; Summerfield, A.; Posthaus, H. Effect of Clostridium perfringens β-Toxin on Platelets. Toxins 2017, 9, 336.

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