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Genes 2017, 8(1), 23; doi:10.3390/genes8010023

Contribution of the RgfD Quorum Sensing Peptide to rgf Regulation and Host Cell Association in Group B Streptococcus

1
Department of Microbiology and Molecular Genetics, Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI 48824, USA
2
Infectiologie et Santé Publique ISP, Institut National de la Recherche Agronomique, Université de Tours, Equipe Bactéries et Risque Materno-fœtal, UMR1282 Tours, France
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Helen J. Wing
Received: 7 October 2016 / Revised: 29 December 2016 / Accepted: 4 January 2017 / Published: 6 January 2017
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Virulence Gene Regulation in Bacteria)
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [2183 KB, uploaded 6 January 2017]   |  

Abstract

Streptococcus agalactiae (group B Streptococcus; GBS) is a common inhabitant of the genitourinary and/or gastrointestinal tract in up to 40% of healthy adults; however, this opportunistic pathogen is able to breach restrictive host barriers to cause disease and persist in harsh and changing conditions. This study sought to identify a role for quorum sensing, a form of cell to cell communication, in the regulation of the fibrinogen-binding (rgfBDAC) two-component system and the ability to associate with decidualized endometrial cells in vitro. To do this, we created a deletion in rgfD, which encodes the putative autoinducing peptide, in a GBS strain belonging to multilocus sequence type (ST)-17 and made comparisons to the wild type. Sequence variation in the rgf operon was detected in 40 clinical strains and a non-synonymous single nucleotide polymorphism was detected in rgfD in all of the ST-17 genomes that resulted in a truncation. Using qPCR, expression of rgf operon genes was significantly decreased in the ST-17 ΔrgfD mutant during exponential growth with the biggest difference (3.3-fold) occurring at higher cell densities. Association with decidualized endometrial cells was decreased 1.3-fold in the mutant relative to the wild type and rgfC expression was reduced 22-fold in ΔrgfD following exposure to the endometrial cells. Collectively, these data suggest that this putative quorum sensing molecule is important for attachment to human tissues and demonstrate a role for RgfD in GBS pathogenesis through regulation of rgfC. View Full-Text
Keywords: Streptococcus agalactiae; quorum sensing; colonization; group B Streptococcus Streptococcus agalactiae; quorum sensing; colonization; group B Streptococcus
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MDPI and ACS Style

Parker, R.E.; Knupp, D.; Al Safadi, R.; Rosenau, A.; Manning, S.D. Contribution of the RgfD Quorum Sensing Peptide to rgf Regulation and Host Cell Association in Group B Streptococcus. Genes 2017, 8, 23.

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