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Microorganisms 2015, 3(3), 464-483; doi:10.3390/microorganisms3030464

Role of Bacterial Exopolysaccharides as Agents in Counteracting Immune Disorders Induced by Herpes Virus

1
Research Centre for Extreme Environments and Extremophiles, Department of Biological and Environmental Sciences, University of Messina, V.le F. Stagno d’Alcontres 31, 98166 Messina, Italy
2
Council of National Research (C.N.R.), Institute of Biomolecular Chemistry, Via Campi Flegrei 34, 80078 Pozzuoli, Italy
3
Department of Human Pathology, Unit of Clinical Microbiology, Policlinico Universitario “G. Martino”, Via Consolare Valeria, 98125 Messina, Italy
These authors contributed equally to this work.
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editors: Ricardo Amils and Elena González Toril
Received: 1 July 2015 / Revised: 24 July 2015 / Accepted: 5 August 2015 / Published: 21 August 2015
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Extremophiles)
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Abstract

Extreme marine environments, such as the submarine shallow vents of the Eolian Islands (Italy), offer an almost unexplored source of microorganisms producing unexploited and promising biomolecules for pharmaceutical applications. Thermophilic and thermotolerant bacilli isolated from Eolian vents are able to produce exopolysaccharides (EPSs) with antiviral and immunomodulatory effects against Herpes simplex virus type 2 (HSV-2). HSV-2 is responsible for the most common and continuously increasing viral infections in humans. Due to the appearance of resistance to the available treatments, new biomolecules exhibiting different mechanisms of action could provide novel agents for treating viral infections. The EPSs hinder the HSV-2 replication in human peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMC) but not in WISH (Wistar Institute Susan Hayflic) cells line, indicating that cell-mediated immunity was involved in the antiviral activity. High levels of Th1-type cytokines were detected in PBMC treated with all EPSs, while Th2-type cytokines were not induced. These EPSs are water soluble exopolymers able to stimulate the immune response and thus contribute to the antiviral immune defense, acting as immunomodulators. As stimulants of Th1 cell-mediated immunity, they could lead to the development of novel drugs as alternative in the treatment of herpes virus infections, as well as in immunocompromised host. View Full-Text
Keywords: antivirals; Eolian Islands; exopolysaccharides; herpes simplex virus; immunomodulators; extremophiles; shallow marine vents antivirals; Eolian Islands; exopolysaccharides; herpes simplex virus; immunomodulators; extremophiles; shallow marine vents
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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Gugliandolo, C.; Spanò, A.; Maugeri, T.L.; Poli, A.; Arena, A.; Nicolaus, B. Role of Bacterial Exopolysaccharides as Agents in Counteracting Immune Disorders Induced by Herpes Virus. Microorganisms 2015, 3, 464-483.

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