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Pathogens, Volume 3, Issue 4 (December 2014), Pages 791-956

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Research

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Open AccessArticle Serum Survival of Vibrio vulnificus: Role of Genotype, Capsule, Complement, Clinical Origin, and in Situ Incubation
Pathogens 2014, 3(4), 822-832; doi:10.3390/pathogens3040822
Received: 1 September 2014 / Revised: 30 September 2014 / Accepted: 30 September 2014 / Published: 3 October 2014
Cited by 5 | PDF Full-text (275 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Virulence of the human pathogen, V. vulnificus, is associated with encapsulation, serum complement resistance, and genotype. The C-genotype of this bacterium is correlated (>90%) with virulence and with isolation source (clinical settings). E-genotype strains are highly correlated with environmental isolation (93%) but
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Virulence of the human pathogen, V. vulnificus, is associated with encapsulation, serum complement resistance, and genotype. The C-genotype of this bacterium is correlated (>90%) with virulence and with isolation source (clinical settings). E-genotype strains are highly correlated with environmental isolation (93%) but appear less virulent. In this study, we characterized the importance of genotype, encapsulation, serum complement, and in situ exposure to estuarine water on the survival of the two genotypes in human serum. Results confirmed the superior ability of C-genotype strains to survive exposure to human serum, as well as the significance of complement, and revealed that lack of capsule allowed serum killing of both C- and E-genotypes. Cells incubated in situ responded similarly to cells incubated in vitro with the exception of E-environmental strains. Interestingly, our studies found that those cells of the E-genotype, typically considered non-pathogenic, which were isolated from wound infections demonstrated serum survival similar to that of virulent, C-genotype, strains. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Exploring PFGE for Detecting Large Plasmids in Campylobacter jejuni and Campylobacter coli Isolated from Various Retail Meats
Pathogens 2014, 3(4), 833-844; doi:10.3390/pathogens3040833
Received: 29 July 2014 / Revised: 10 October 2014 / Accepted: 15 October 2014 / Published: 21 October 2014
Cited by 5 | PDF Full-text (632 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Campylobacter spp. is one of the most prevalent bacterial pathogens in retail meat, particularly poultry, and is a leading cause of diarrhea in humans. Studies related to Campylobacter large plasmids are limited in the literature possibly due to difficulty in isolating them using
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Campylobacter spp. is one of the most prevalent bacterial pathogens in retail meat, particularly poultry, and is a leading cause of diarrhea in humans. Studies related to Campylobacter large plasmids are limited in the literature possibly due to difficulty in isolating them using available alkaline lysis methods. The objectives of this study were to determine the prevalence of plasmids, particularly large ones, in Campylobacter spp. isolated from various Oklahoma retail meats, and to explore PFGE (Pulsed Field Gel Electrophoresis) as a tool in facilitating the detection of these plasmids. One hundred and eighty nine strains (94 Campylobacter jejuni and 95 Campylobacter coli) were screened for the presence of plasmids using both alkaline lysis and PFGE. Plasmids were detected in 119/189 (63%) using both methods. Most of the plasmids detected by alkaline lysis were smaller than 90 kb and only three were larger than 90 kb. Plasmids over 70 kb in size were detected in 33 more strains by PFGE of which 11 strains contained larger than 90 kb plasmids. Plasmids were more prevalent in Campylobacter coli (73.5%) than in Campylobacter jejuni (52%). BglII restriction analysis of plasmids isolated from 102 isolates revealed 42 different restriction patterns. In conclusion, PFGE was able to detect large plasmids up to 180 Kb in Campylobacter spp. which might have been missed if the alkaline lysis method was solely used. Campylobacter spp. isolated from retail meats harbor a diverse population of plasmids with variable sizes. To our knowledge, this is the first study to use PFGE to detect large plasmids in Campylobacter. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Foodborne Pathogens)
Open AccessArticle Comparison of Potato and Asian Citrus Psyllid Adult and Nymph Transcriptomes Identified Vector Transcripts with Potential Involvement in Circulative, Propagative Liberibacter Transmission
Pathogens 2014, 3(4), 875-907; doi:10.3390/pathogens3040875
Received: 19 September 2014 / Revised: 18 October 2014 / Accepted: 20 October 2014 / Published: 3 November 2014
Cited by 9 | PDF Full-text (643 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text | Supplementary Files
Abstract
The potato psyllid (PoP) Bactericera cockerelli (Sulc) and Asian citrus psyllid (ACP) Diaphorina citri Kuwayama are the insect vectors of the fastidious plant pathogen, Candidatus Liberibacter solanacearum (CLso) and Ca. L. asiaticus (CLas), respectively. CLso causes Zebra chip disease of potato and
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The potato psyllid (PoP) Bactericera cockerelli (Sulc) and Asian citrus psyllid (ACP) Diaphorina citri Kuwayama are the insect vectors of the fastidious plant pathogen, Candidatus Liberibacter solanacearum (CLso) and Ca. L. asiaticus (CLas), respectively. CLso causes Zebra chip disease of potato and vein-greening in solanaceous species, whereas, CLas causes citrus greening disease. The reliance on insecticides for vector management to reduce pathogen transmission has increased interest in alternative approaches, including RNA interference to abate expression of genes essential for psyllid-mediated Ca. Liberibacter transmission. To identify genes with significantly altered expression at different life stages and conditions of CLso/CLas infection, cDNA libraries were constructed for CLso-infected and -uninfected PoP adults and nymphal instars. Illumina sequencing produced 199,081,451 reads that were assembled into 82,224 unique transcripts. PoP and the analogous transcripts from ACP adult and nymphs reported elsewhere were annotated, organized into functional gene groups using the Gene Ontology classification system, and analyzed for differential in silico expression. Expression profiles revealed vector life stage differences and differential gene expression associated with Liberibacter infection of the psyllid host, including invasion, immune system modulation, nutrition, and development. Full article
Open AccessArticle Antimicrobial and Antibiofilm Activity of Chitosan on the Oral Pathogen Candida albicans
Pathogens 2014, 3(4), 908-919; doi:10.3390/pathogens3040908
Received: 26 September 2014 / Revised: 3 December 2014 / Accepted: 4 December 2014 / Published: 11 December 2014
Cited by 11 | PDF Full-text (1065 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Oral candidiasis is particularly evident, not only in cancer patients receiving chemotherapy, but also in elderly people with xerostomy. In general, Candida is an opportunistic pathogen, causing infections in immunocompromised people and, in some cases, when the natural microbiota is altered. Chitosan, a
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Oral candidiasis is particularly evident, not only in cancer patients receiving chemotherapy, but also in elderly people with xerostomy. In general, Candida is an opportunistic pathogen, causing infections in immunocompromised people and, in some cases, when the natural microbiota is altered. Chitosan, a natural derivative of chitin, is a polysaccharide that has been proven to possess a broad spectrum of antimicrobial activity that encompasses action against fungi, yeast and bacteria. While recent studies have revealed a significant antibiofilm activity upon several microorganisms, including C. albicans, little is known regarding the impact of chitosan upon the adhesive process or mature biofilms. With that in mind, the purpose of this work was to evaluate, in vitro, the capability of chitosan to inhibit C. albicans growth and biofilm formation. The results obtained showed that chitosan is capable of inhibiting C. albicans planktonic growth (HMW, 1 mg/mL; LMW, 3 mg/mL). Regarding biofilm growth, chitosan inhibited C. albicans adhesion (ca. 95%), biofilm formation (percentages above 90%) and reduced mature biofilms by ca. 65% and dual species biofilms (C. albicans and S. mutans) by ca. 70%. These results display the potential of this molecule to be used as an effective anti-Candida agent capable of acting upon C. albicans infections. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Biofilm-Based Nosocomial Infections) Printed Edition available
Open AccessArticle Proteomic Differences between Listeria monocytogenes Isolates from Food and Clinical Environments
Pathogens 2014, 3(4), 920-933; doi:10.3390/pathogens3040920
Received: 26 September 2014 / Revised: 21 November 2014 / Accepted: 3 December 2014 / Published: 12 December 2014
Cited by 1 | PDF Full-text (1195 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Listeria monocytogenes is an organism associated with a wide range of foods. It causes listeriosis, a severe illness that mainly affects people with weakened immune systems. Proteomic profiles of three different L. monocytogenes isolates were studied using 1D SDS PAGE, 2DE and mass
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Listeria monocytogenes is an organism associated with a wide range of foods. It causes listeriosis, a severe illness that mainly affects people with weakened immune systems. Proteomic profiles of three different L. monocytogenes isolates were studied using 1D SDS PAGE, 2DE and mass spectrometry. The protein banding patterns generated by 1D SDS PAGE of three strains of L. monocytogenes were found to be similar. Visual observations from 2DE gel maps revealed that certain spots appeared to have intensity differences. Key differences in proteins synthesis of three strains of L. monocytogenes were found using the PDQest TM 2DE Analysis software. Comparison showed that the clinical isolate (strain SB92/844) had 53.4% and 53.9% protein profile similarity with dairy isolate (strain V7) and seafood isolate (SB92/870), respectively. The identity of selected protein spots was achieved using MALDI-TOF and ion trap mass spectrometry. It was found that certain identified proteins (i.e., a major cold shock protein and superoxide dismutase) were expressed differently between two local strains of L. monocytogenes (SB92/844, SB92/870) and one strain from overseas (V7). Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Foodborne Pathogens)
Open AccessArticle Effect of Bile Salt Hydrolase Inhibitors on a Bile Salt Hydrolase from Lactobacillus acidophilus
Pathogens 2014, 3(4), 947-956; doi:10.3390/pathogens3040947
Received: 3 November 2014 / Revised: 11 December 2014 / Accepted: 12 December 2014 / Published: 17 December 2014
Cited by 3 | PDF Full-text (620 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Bile salt hydrolase (BSH), a widely distributed function of the gut microbiota, has a profound impact on host lipid metabolism and energy harvest. Recent studies suggest that BSH inhibitors are promising alternatives to antibiotic growth promoters (AGP) for enhanced animal growth performance and
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Bile salt hydrolase (BSH), a widely distributed function of the gut microbiota, has a profound impact on host lipid metabolism and energy harvest. Recent studies suggest that BSH inhibitors are promising alternatives to antibiotic growth promoters (AGP) for enhanced animal growth performance and food safety. Using a high-purity BSH from Lactobacillus salivarius strain, we have identified a panel of BSH inhibitors. However, it is still unknown if these inhibitors also effectively inhibit the function of the BSH enzymes from other bacterial species with different sequence and substrate spectrum. In this study, we performed bioinformatics analysis and determined the inhibitory effect of identified BSH inhibitors on a BSH from L. acidophilus. Although the L. acidophilus BSH is phylogenetically distant from the L. salivarius BSH, sequence analysis and structure modeling indicated the two BSH enzymes contain conserved, catalytically important amino residues and domain. His-tagged recombinant BSH from L. acidophilus was further purified and used to determine inhibitory effect of specific compounds. Previously identified BSH inhibitors also exhibited potent inhibitory effects on the L. acidophilus BSH. In conclusion, this study demonstrated that the BSH from L. salivarius is an ideal candidate for screening BSH inhibitors, the promising alternatives to AGP for enhanced feed efficiency, growth performance and profitability of food animals. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Alternatives to Antibiotics: Current Strategies and Future Prospects)

Review

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Open AccessReview Evolution of Antimicrobial Peptides to Self-Assembled Peptides for Biomaterial Applications
Pathogens 2014, 3(4), 791-821; doi:10.3390/pathogens3040791
Received: 30 June 2014 / Revised: 17 September 2014 / Accepted: 25 September 2014 / Published: 3 October 2014
Cited by 11 | PDF Full-text (1196 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Biomaterial-related infections are a persistent burden on patient health, recovery, mortality and healthcare budgets. Self-assembled antimicrobial peptides have evolved from the area of antimicrobial peptides. Peptides serve as important weapons in nature, and increasingly medicine, for combating microbial infection and biofilms. Self-assembled peptides
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Biomaterial-related infections are a persistent burden on patient health, recovery, mortality and healthcare budgets. Self-assembled antimicrobial peptides have evolved from the area of antimicrobial peptides. Peptides serve as important weapons in nature, and increasingly medicine, for combating microbial infection and biofilms. Self-assembled peptides harness a “bottom-up” approach, whereby the primary peptide sequence may be modified with natural and unnatural amino acids to produce an inherently antimicrobial hydrogel. Gelation may be tailored to occur in the presence of physiological and infective indicators (e.g. pH, enzymes) and therefore allow local, targeted antimicrobial therapy at the site of infection. Peptides demonstrate inherent biocompatibility, antimicrobial activity, biodegradability and numerous functional groups. They are therefore prime candidates for the production of polymeric molecules that have the potential to be conjugated to biomaterials with precision. Non-native chemistries and functional groups are easily incorporated into the peptide backbone allowing peptide hydrogels to be tailored to specific functional requirements. This article reviews an area of increasing interest, namely self-assembled peptides and their potential therapeutic applications as innovative hydrogels and biomaterials in the prevention of biofilm-related infection. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Biofilm-Based Nosocomial Infections) Printed Edition available
Open AccessReview Animal Models for Influenza Viruses: Implications for Universal Vaccine Development
Pathogens 2014, 3(4), 845-874; doi:10.3390/pathogens3040845
Received: 7 August 2014 / Revised: 10 October 2014 / Accepted: 10 October 2014 / Published: 21 October 2014
Cited by 19 | PDF Full-text (395 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Influenza virus infections are a significant cause of morbidity and mortality in the human population. Depending on the virulence of the influenza virus strain, as well as the immunological status of the infected individual, the severity of the respiratory disease may range from
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Influenza virus infections are a significant cause of morbidity and mortality in the human population. Depending on the virulence of the influenza virus strain, as well as the immunological status of the infected individual, the severity of the respiratory disease may range from sub-clinical or mild symptoms to severe pneumonia that can sometimes lead to death. Vaccines remain the primary public health measure in reducing the influenza burden. Though the first influenza vaccine preparation was licensed more than 60 years ago, current research efforts seek to develop novel vaccination strategies with improved immunogenicity, effectiveness, and breadth of protection. Animal models of influenza have been essential in facilitating studies aimed at understanding viral factors that affect pathogenesis and contribute to disease or transmission. Among others, mice, ferrets, pigs, and nonhuman primates have been used to study influenza virus infection in vivo, as well as to do pre-clinical testing of novel vaccine approaches. Here we discuss and compare the unique advantages and limitations of each model. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Animal Model to Study Viral Immunity)
Open AccessReview Alternatives to Antibiotics in Semen Extenders: A Review
Pathogens 2014, 3(4), 934-946; doi:10.3390/pathogens3040934
Received: 30 October 2014 / Revised: 5 December 2014 / Accepted: 9 December 2014 / Published: 15 December 2014
Cited by 9 | PDF Full-text (481 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Antibiotics are added to semen extenders to be used for artificial insemination (AI) in livestock breeding to control bacterial contamination in semen arising during collection and processing. The antibiotics to be added and their concentrations for semen for international trade are specified by
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Antibiotics are added to semen extenders to be used for artificial insemination (AI) in livestock breeding to control bacterial contamination in semen arising during collection and processing. The antibiotics to be added and their concentrations for semen for international trade are specified by government directives. Since the animal production industry uses large quantities of semen for artificial insemination, large amounts of antibiotics are currently used in semen extenders. Possible alternatives to antibiotics are discussed, including physical removal of the bacteria during semen processing, as well as the development of novel antimicrobials. Colloid centrifugation, particularly Single Layer Centrifugation, when carried out with a strict aseptic technique, offers a feasible method for reducing bacterial contamination in semen and is a practical method for semen processing laboratories to adopt. However, none of these alternatives to antibiotics should replace strict attention to hygiene during semen collection and handling. Full article

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