Open AccessEditorial
Acknowledgement to Reviewers of Pathogens in 2016
Pathogens 2017, 6(1), 4; doi:10.3390/pathogens6010004 -
Abstract The editors of Pathogens would like to express their sincere gratitude to the following reviewers for assessing manuscripts in 2016.[...] Full article
Open AccessReview
Is Toxoplasma gondii a Trigger of Bipolar Disorder?
Pathogens 2017, 6(1), 3; doi:10.3390/pathogens6010003 -
Abstract
Toxoplasma gondii, a ubiquitous intracellular parasite, has a strong tropism for the brain tissue, where it forms intracellular cysts within the neurons and glial cells, establishing a chronic infection. Although latent toxoplasmosis is generally assumed to be asymptomatic in immunocompetent individuals, it
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Toxoplasma gondii, a ubiquitous intracellular parasite, has a strong tropism for the brain tissue, where it forms intracellular cysts within the neurons and glial cells, establishing a chronic infection. Although latent toxoplasmosis is generally assumed to be asymptomatic in immunocompetent individuals, it is now clear that it can induce behavioral manipulations in mice and infected humans. Moreover, a strong relation has emerged in recent years between toxoplasmosis and psychiatric disorders. The link between T. gondii and schizophrenia has been the most widely documented; however, a significant association with bipolar disorder (BD) and suicidal/aggressive behaviors has also been detected. T. gondii may play a role in the etiopathogenesis of psychiatric disorders affecting neurotransmitters, especially dopamine, that are implicated in the emergence of psychosis and behavioral Toxoplasma-induced abnormalities, and inducing brain inflammation by the direct stimulation of inflammatory cytokines in the central nervous system. Besides this, there is increasing evidence for a prominent role of immune dysregulation in psychosis and BD. The aim of this review is to describe recent evidence suggesting a link between Toxoplasma gondii and BD, focusing on the interaction between immune responses and this infectious agent in the etiopathogenesis of psychiatric symptoms. Full article
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Open AccessReview
Herpesviruses dUTPases: A New Family of Pathogen-Associated Molecular Pattern (PAMP) Proteins with Implications for Human Disease
Pathogens 2017, 6(1), 2; doi:10.3390/pathogens6010002 -
Abstract
The human herpesviruses are ubiquitous viruses and have a prevalence of over 90% in the adult population. Following a primary infection they establish latency and can be reactivated over a person’s lifetime. While it is well accepted that human herpesviruses are implicated in
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The human herpesviruses are ubiquitous viruses and have a prevalence of over 90% in the adult population. Following a primary infection they establish latency and can be reactivated over a person’s lifetime. While it is well accepted that human herpesviruses are implicated in numerous diseases ranging from dermatological and autoimmune disease to cancer, the role of lytic proteins in the pathophysiology of herpesvirus-associated diseases remains largely understudies. Only recently have we begun to appreciate the importance of lytic proteins produced during reactivation of the virus, in particular the deoxyuridine triphosphate nucleotidohydrolases (dUTPase), as key modulators of the host innate and adaptive immune responses. In this review, we provide evidence from animal and human studies of the Epstein–Barr virus as a prototype, supporting the notion that herpesviruses dUTPases are a family of proteins with unique immunoregulatory functions that can alter the inflammatory microenvironment and thus exacerbate the immune pathology of herpesvirus-related diseases including myalgic encephalomyelitis/chronic fatigue syndrome, autoimmune diseases, and cancer. Full article
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Open AccessCommunication
Detection of Campylobacter jejuni in Lizard Faeces from Central Australia Using Quantitative PCR
Pathogens 2017, 6(1), 1; doi:10.3390/pathogens6010001 -
Abstract
Worldwide, Campylobacter is a significant cause of gastrointestinal illness. It is predominately considered a foodborne pathogen, with human exposure via non-food transmission routes generally overlooked. Current literature has been exploring environmental reservoirs of campylobacteriosis including potential wildlife reservoirs. Given the close proximity between
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Worldwide, Campylobacter is a significant cause of gastrointestinal illness. It is predominately considered a foodborne pathogen, with human exposure via non-food transmission routes generally overlooked. Current literature has been exploring environmental reservoirs of campylobacteriosis including potential wildlife reservoirs. Given the close proximity between lizards and human habitats in Central Australia, this study examined the presence of Campylobacter jejuni from lizard faeces collected from this region. Of the 51 samples collected, 17 (33%) (this included 14/46 (30%) wild and 3/5 (60%) captive lizard samples) were positive for C. jejuni using quantitative PCR (qPCR). This was the first study to investigate the presence of C. jejuni in Australian lizards. This has public health implications regarding the risk of campylobacteriosis from handling of pet reptiles and through cross-contamination or contact with wild lizard faeces. Additionally this has implication for horizontal transmission via lizards of C. jejuni to food production farms. Further research is needed on this environmental reservoir and potential transmission routes to reduce the risk to public health. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
The Optimisation of Pseudotyped Viruses for the Characterisation of Immune Responses to Equine Influenza Virus
Pathogens 2016, 5(4), 68; doi:10.3390/pathogens5040068 -
Abstract
Pseudotyped viruses (PVs) produced by co-transfecting cells with plasmids expressing lentiviral core proteins and viral envelope proteins are potentially powerful tools for studying various aspects of equine influenza virus (EIV) biology. The aim of this study was to optimise production of equine influenza
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Pseudotyped viruses (PVs) produced by co-transfecting cells with plasmids expressing lentiviral core proteins and viral envelope proteins are potentially powerful tools for studying various aspects of equine influenza virus (EIV) biology. The aim of this study was to optimise production of equine influenza PVs. Co-transfection of the HAT protease to activate the haemagglutinin (HA) yielded a higher titre PV than TMPRSS2 with the HA from A/equine/Richmond/1/2007 (H3N8), whereas for A/equine/Newmarket/79 (H3N8), both proteases resulted in equivalent titres. TMPRSS4 was ineffective with the HA of either strain. There was also an inverse relationship between the amount of protease-expression plasmids and the PV titre obtained.  Interestingly, the PV titre obtained by co-transfection of a plasmid encoding the cognate N8 NA was not as high as that generated by the addition of exogenous neuraminidase (NA) from Clostridium perfringens to allow the release of nascent PV particles. Finally, initial characterisation of the reliability of PV neutralisation tests (PVNTs) demonstrated good intra-laboratory repeatability. In conclusion, we have demonstrated that equine influenza PV production can be readily optimised to provide a flexible tool for studying EIV. Full article
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Open AccessReview
Varicella-Zoster Virus Infectious Cycle: ER Stress, Autophagic Flux, and Amphisome-Mediated Trafficking
Pathogens 2016, 5(4), 67; doi:10.3390/pathogens5040067 -
Abstract
Varicella-zoster virus (VZV) induces abundant autophagy. Of the nine human herpesviruses, the VZV genome is the smallest (~124 kbp), lacking any known inhibitors of autophagy, such as the herpes simplex virus ICP34.5 neurovirulence gene. Therefore, this review assesses the evidence for VZV-induced cellular
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Varicella-zoster virus (VZV) induces abundant autophagy. Of the nine human herpesviruses, the VZV genome is the smallest (~124 kbp), lacking any known inhibitors of autophagy, such as the herpes simplex virus ICP34.5 neurovirulence gene. Therefore, this review assesses the evidence for VZV-induced cellular stress, endoplasmic-reticulum-associated degradation (ERAD), and autophagic flux during the VZV infectious cycle. Even though VZV is difficult to propagate in cell culture, the biosynthesis of the both N- and O-linked viral glycoproteins was found to be abundant. In turn, this biosynthesis provided evidence of endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress, including a greatly enlarged ER and a greatly diminished production of cellular glycoproteins. Other signs of ER stress following VZV infection included detection of the alternatively spliced higher-molecular-weight form of XBP1 as well as CHOP. VZV infection in cultured cells leads to abundant autophagosome production, as was visualized by the detection of the microtubule-associated protein 1 light chain 3-II (LC3-II). The degree of autophagy induced by VZV infection is comparable to that induced in uninfected cells by serum starvation. The inhibition of autophagic flux by chemicals such as 3-methyladenine or ATG5 siRNA, followed by diminished virus spread and titers, has been observed. Since the latter observation pointed to the virus assembly/trafficking compartments, we purified VZ virions by ultracentrifugation and examined the virion fraction for components of the autophagy pathway. We detected LC3-II protein (an autophagy marker) as well as Rab11 protein, a component of the endosomal pathway. We also observed that the virion-containing vesicles were single-walled; thus, they are not autophagosomes. These results suggested that some VZ virions after secondary envelopment were transported to the outer cell membrane in a vesicle derived from both the autophagy and endosomal pathways, such as an amphisome. Thus, these results demonstrate that herpesvirus trafficking pathways can converge with the autophagy pathway. Full article
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Open AccessReview
Reviewing the History of Pandemic Influenza: Understanding Patterns of Emergence and Transmission
Pathogens 2016, 5(4), 66; doi:10.3390/pathogens5040066 -
Abstract
For centuries, novel strains of influenza have emerged to produce human pandemics, causing widespread illness, death, and disruption. There have been four influenza pandemics in the past hundred years. During this time, globalization processes, alongside advances in medicine and epidemiology, have altered the
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For centuries, novel strains of influenza have emerged to produce human pandemics, causing widespread illness, death, and disruption. There have been four influenza pandemics in the past hundred years. During this time, globalization processes, alongside advances in medicine and epidemiology, have altered the way these pandemics are experienced. Drawing on international case studies, this paper provides a review of the impact of past influenza pandemics, while examining the evolution of our understanding of, and response to, these viruses. This review argues that pandemic influenza is in part a consequence of human development, and highlights the importance of considering outbreaks within the context of shifting global landscapes. While progress in infectious disease prevention, control, and treatment has improved our ability to respond to such outbreaks, globalization processes relating to human behaviour, demographics, and mobility have increased the threat of pandemic emergence and accelerated global disease transmission. Preparedness planning must continue to evolve to keep pace with this heightened risk. Herein, we look to the past for insights on the pandemic experience, underlining both progress and persisting challenges. However, given the uncertain timing and severity of future pandemics, we emphasize the need for flexible policies capable of responding to change as such emergencies develop. Full article
Open AccessReview
Microbial Biofilms in Urinary Tract Infections and Prostatitis: Etiology, Pathogenicity, and Combating strategies
Pathogens 2016, 5(4), 65; doi:10.3390/pathogens5040065 -
Abstract
Urinary tract infections (UTIs) are one of the most important causes of morbidity and health care spending affecting persons of all ages. Bacterial biofilms play an important role in UTIs, responsible for persistent infections leading to recurrences and relapses. UTIs associated with microbial
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Urinary tract infections (UTIs) are one of the most important causes of morbidity and health care spending affecting persons of all ages. Bacterial biofilms play an important role in UTIs, responsible for persistent infections leading to recurrences and relapses. UTIs associated with microbial biofilms developed on catheters account for a high percentage of all nosocomial infections and are the most common source of Gram-negative bacteremia in hospitalized patients. The purpose of this mini-review is to present the role of microbial biofilms in the etiology of female UTI and different male prostatitis syndromes, their consequences, as well as the challenges for therapy Full article
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Open AccessReview
How to Meet the Last OIE Expert Surveillance Panel Recommendations on Equine Influenza (EI) Vaccine Composition: A Review of the Process Required for the Recombinant Canarypox-Based EI Vaccine
Pathogens 2016, 5(4), 64; doi:10.3390/pathogens5040064 -
Abstract
Vaccination is highly effective to prevent, control, and limit the impact of equine influenza (EI), a major respiratory disease of horses. However, EI vaccines should contain relevant equine influenza virus (EIV) strains for optimal protection. The OIE expert surveillance panel annually reviews EIV
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Vaccination is highly effective to prevent, control, and limit the impact of equine influenza (EI), a major respiratory disease of horses. However, EI vaccines should contain relevant equine influenza virus (EIV) strains for optimal protection. The OIE expert surveillance panel annually reviews EIV evolution and, since 2010, the use of Florida clade 1 and 2 sub-lineages representative vaccine strains is recommended. This report summarises the development process of a fully- updated recombinant canarypox-based EI vaccine in order to meet the last OIE recommendations, including the vaccine mode of action, production steps and schedule. The EI vaccine ProteqFlu contains 2 recombinant canarypox viruses expressing the haemagglutinin of the A/equine/Ohio/03 and A/equine/Richmond/1/07 isolates (Florida clade 1 and 2 sub-lineages, respectively). The updated EI vaccine was tested for efficacy against the representative Florida clade 2 EIV strain A/equine/Richmond/1/07 in the Welsh mountain pony model. Protective antibody response, clinical signs of disease and virus shedding were compared with unvaccinated control ponies. Significant protection was measured in vaccinated ponies, which supports the vaccine registration. The recombinant canarypox-based EI vaccine was the first fully updated EI vaccine available in the EU, which will help to minimise the increasing risk of vaccine breakdown due to constant EIV evolution through antigenic drift. Full article
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Open AccessCommunication
Distribution of Type I Restriction–Modification Systems in Streptococcus suis: An Outlook
Pathogens 2016, 5(4), 62; doi:10.3390/pathogens5040062 -
Abstract
Streptococcus suis is a porcine commensal and pathogen with zoonotic potential. We recently identified a novel Type I restriction–modification (R–M) system in a zoonotic S. suis clone which has emerged in the Netherlands. Here, we describe the DNA inversions in the specificity subunit
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Streptococcus suis is a porcine commensal and pathogen with zoonotic potential. We recently identified a novel Type I restriction–modification (R–M) system in a zoonotic S. suis clone which has emerged in the Netherlands. Here, we describe the DNA inversions in the specificity subunit of this system in S. suis serotype 2, clonal complex 20 and explain the absence of domain movement by the absence of repeats. In addition, we identified a core Type I R–M system present in 95% of the isolates and found an association of the distribution of Type I R–M systems in the S. suis genome with population structure. We speculate on the potential role of Type I R–M systems in S. suis given the recently described associations of Type I R–M systems with virulence and propose future research directions. Full article
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Open AccessReview
A Review of Temperature, pH, and Other Factors that Influence the Survival of Salmonella in Mayonnaise and Other Raw Egg Products
Pathogens 2016, 5(4), 63; doi:10.3390/pathogens5040063 -
Abstract
Salmonellosis is one of the main causes of foodborne illnesses worldwide, with outbreaks predominately linked to contamination of eggs and raw egg products, such as mayonnaise. This review explores previous studies that have investigated Salmonella control mechanisms utilized in the production of raw
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Salmonellosis is one of the main causes of foodborne illnesses worldwide, with outbreaks predominately linked to contamination of eggs and raw egg products, such as mayonnaise. This review explores previous studies that have investigated Salmonella control mechanisms utilized in the production of raw egg mayonnaise and other food products. Apart from the use of pasteurized eggs, the main control mechanism identified is the pH of the raw egg products, which plays an important role in the consistency and stability while affecting the survival of Salmonella spp. However, currently there is no consensus regarding the critical pH limit for the control of Salmonella. The effectiveness of pH as a control mechanism is influenced by the type of acid used, with the effectiveness of lemon juice compared with vinegar highly debated. Additionally, Salmonella susceptibility to pH stresses may also be influenced by storage temperature (in some studies refrigeration temperatures protected Salmonella spp. from acidulants) and is further complicated by the development of Salmonella cross-tolerance-induced responses, pH homeostasis achieved by the cellular antiport and symport systems, and acid tolerance response (ATR). These mechanisms all provide Salmonella with an added advantage to ensure survival under various pH conditions. Other confounding factors include the fat content, and the addition of NaCl, garlic and plant essential oils (PEOs) from mint, cinnamon, cardamom and clove. Full article
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Open AccessFeature PaperArticle
Molecular Epidemiology and Spatio-Temporal Dynamics of the H3N8 Equine Influenza Virus in South America
Pathogens 2016, 5(4), 61; doi:10.3390/pathogens5040061 -
Abstract
Equine influenza virus (EIV) is considered the most important respiratory pathogen of horses as outbreaks of the disease lead to substantial economic losses. The H3N8 EIV has caused respiratory disease in horses across the world, including South American countries. Nucleotide and deduced amino
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Equine influenza virus (EIV) is considered the most important respiratory pathogen of horses as outbreaks of the disease lead to substantial economic losses. The H3N8 EIV has caused respiratory disease in horses across the world, including South American countries. Nucleotide and deduced amino acid sequences for the complete haemagglutinin gene of the H3N8 EIV detected in South America since 1963 were analyzed. Phylogenetic and Bayesian coalescent analyses were carried out to study the origin, the time of the most recent common ancestors (tMRCA), the demographic and the phylogeographic patterns of the H3N8 EIV. The phylogenetic analysis demonstrated that the H3N8 EIV detected in South America grouped in 5 well-supported monophyletic clades, each associated with strains of different origins. The tMRCA estimated for each group suggested that the virus was circulating in North America at least one year before its effective circulation in the South American population. Phylogenetic and coalescent analyses revealed a polyphyletic behavior of the viruses causing the outbreaks in South America between 1963 and 2012, possibly due to the introduction of at least 4 different EIVs through the international movement of horses. In addition, phylodynamic analysis suggested South America as the starting point of the spread of the H3N8 EIV in 1963 and showed migration links from the United States to South America in the subsequent EIV irruptions. Further, an increase in the relative genetic diversity was observed between 2006 and 2007 and a subsequent decline since 2009, probably due to the co-circulation of different lineages and as a result of the incorporation of the Florida clade 2 strain in vaccines, respectively. The observed data highlight the importance of epidemiological surveillance and the implementation of appropriate quarantine procedures to prevent outbreaks of the disease. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
RT-qPCR Analysis of 15 Genes Encoding Putative Surface Proteins Involved in Adherence of Listeria monocytogenes
Pathogens 2016, 5(4), 60; doi:10.3390/pathogens5040060 -
Abstract
L. monocytogenes adherence to food-associated abiotic surfaces and the development of biofilms as one of the underlying reasons for the contamination of ready-to-eat products is well known. The over-expression of internalins that improves adherence has been noted in cells growing as attached cells
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L. monocytogenes adherence to food-associated abiotic surfaces and the development of biofilms as one of the underlying reasons for the contamination of ready-to-eat products is well known. The over-expression of internalins that improves adherence has been noted in cells growing as attached cells or at elevated incubation temperatures. However, the role of other internalin-independent surface proteins as adhesins has been uncharacterized to date. Using two strains each of weakly- and strongly-adherent L. monocytogenes as platforms for temperature-dependent adherence assays and targeted mRNA analyses, these observations (i.e., sessile- and/or temperature-dependent gene expression) were further investigated. Microplate fluorescence assays of both surface-adherent strains exhibited significant (P < 0.05) adherence at higher incubation temperature (42 °C). Of the 15 genes selected for RT-qPCR, at least ten gene transcripts recovered from cells (weakly-adherent strain CW35, strongly-adherent strain 99-38) subject to various growth conditions were over expressed [planktonic/30 °C (10), sessile/30 °C (12), planktonic/42 °C (10)] compared to their internal control (16SrRNA transcripts). Of four genes overexpressed in all three conditions tested, three and one were implicated as virulence factors and unknown function, respectively. PCR analysis of six unexpressed genes revealed that CW35 possessed an altered genome. The results suggest the presence of other internalin-independent adhesins (induced by growth temperature and/or substratum) and that a group of suspect protein members are worthy of further analysis for their potential role as surface adhesins. Analysis of the molecular basis of adherence properties of isolates of L. monocytogenes from food-associated facilities may help identify sanitation regimens to prevent cell attachment and biofilm formation on abiotic surfaces that could play a role in reducing foodborne illness resulting from Listeria biofilms. Full article
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Open AccessReview
Advocating for both Environmental and Clinical Approaches to Control Human Strongyloidiasis
Pathogens 2016, 5(4), 59; doi:10.3390/pathogens5040059 -
Abstract
Strongyloidiasis is an underestimated disease caused by the soil-transmitted parasite of the genus Strongyloides. It is prevalent in socioeconomically disadvantaged communities and it is estimated that global infection could be as high as 370 million people. This paper explores current methods of
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Strongyloidiasis is an underestimated disease caused by the soil-transmitted parasite of the genus Strongyloides. It is prevalent in socioeconomically disadvantaged communities and it is estimated that global infection could be as high as 370 million people. This paper explores current methods of strongyloidiasis treatment, which rely on administration of anthelminthic drugs. However these drugs cannot prevent reinfection and drug resistance has already been observed in veterinary models. This highlights the need for a combined approach for controlling Strongyloides that includes both clinical treatment and environmental control methods. Currently, nematicides are widely used to control plant parasites. The review suggests that due to the species’ similarity and similar modes of action, these nematicides could also be used to control animal and human parasitic nematodes in the environment. Full article
Open AccessReview
Parasitic Nematode Immunomodulatory Strategies: Recent Advances and Perspectives
Pathogens 2016, 5(3), 58; doi:10.3390/pathogens5030058 -
Abstract
More than half of the described species of the phylum Nematoda are considered parasitic, making them one of the most successful groups of parasites. Nematodes are capable of inhabiting a wide variety of niches. A vast array of vertebrate animals, insects, and plants
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More than half of the described species of the phylum Nematoda are considered parasitic, making them one of the most successful groups of parasites. Nematodes are capable of inhabiting a wide variety of niches. A vast array of vertebrate animals, insects, and plants are all identified as potential hosts for nematode parasitization. To invade these hosts successfully, parasitic nematodes must be able to protect themselves from the efficiency and potency of the host immune system. Innate immunity comprises the first wave of the host immune response, and in vertebrate animals it leads to the induction of the adaptive immune response. Nematodes have evolved elegant strategies that allow them to evade, suppress, or modulate host immune responses in order to persist and spread in the host. Nematode immunomodulation involves the secretion of molecules that are capable of suppressing various aspects of the host immune response in order to promote nematode invasion. Immunomodulatory mechanisms can be identified in parasitic nematodes infecting insects, plants, and mammals and vary greatly in the specific tactics by which the parasites modify the host immune response. Nematode-derived immunomodulatory effects have also been shown to affect, negatively or positively, the outcome of some concurrent diseases suffered by the host. Understanding nematode immunomodulatory actions will potentially reveal novel targets that will in turn lead to the development of effective means for the control of destructive nematode parasites. Full article
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Open AccessReview
The Influenza NS1 Protein: What Do We Know in Equine Influenza Virus Pathogenesis?
Pathogens 2016, 5(3), 57; doi:10.3390/pathogens5030057 -
Abstract
Equine influenza virus remains a serious health and potential economic problem throughout most parts of the world, despite intensive vaccination programs in some horse populations. The influenza non-structural protein 1 (NS1) has multiple functions involved in the regulation of several cellular and viral
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Equine influenza virus remains a serious health and potential economic problem throughout most parts of the world, despite intensive vaccination programs in some horse populations. The influenza non-structural protein 1 (NS1) has multiple functions involved in the regulation of several cellular and viral processes during influenza infection. We review the strategies that NS1 uses to facilitate virus replication and inhibit antiviral responses in the host, including sequestering of double-stranded RNA, direct modulation of protein kinase R activity and inhibition of transcription and translation of host antiviral response genes such as type I interferon. Details are provided regarding what it is known about NS1 in equine influenza, especially concerning C-terminal truncation. Further research is needed to determine the role of NS1 in equine influenza infection, which will help to understand the pathophysiology of complicated cases related to cytokine imbalance and secondary bacterial infection, and to investigate new therapeutic and vaccination strategies. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Retrospective Analysis of the Equine Influenza Virus A/Equine/Kirgizia/26/1974 (H7N7) Isolated in Central Asia
Pathogens 2016, 5(3), 55; doi:10.3390/pathogens5030055 -
Abstract
A retrospective phylogenetic characterization of the hemagglutinin, neuraminidase and nucleoprotein genes of equine influenza virus A/equine/Kirgizia/26/1974 (H7N7) which caused an outbreak in Kirgizia (a former Soviet Union republic, now Kyrgyzstan) in 1977 was conducted. It was defined that it was closely related to
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A retrospective phylogenetic characterization of the hemagglutinin, neuraminidase and nucleoprotein genes of equine influenza virus A/equine/Kirgizia/26/1974 (H7N7) which caused an outbreak in Kirgizia (a former Soviet Union republic, now Kyrgyzstan) in 1977 was conducted. It was defined that it was closely related to the strain London/1973 isolated in Europe and it shared a maximum nucleotide sequence identity at 99% with it. This Central Asian equine influenza virus isolate did not have any specific genetic signatures and can be considered as an epizootic strain of 1974 that spread in Europe. The absence of antibodies to this subtype EI virus (EIV) in recent research confirms its disappearance as of the 1990s when the antibodies were last found in unvaccinated horses. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Clearance of Streptococcus suis in Stomach Contents of Differently Fed Growing Pigs
Pathogens 2016, 5(3), 56; doi:10.3390/pathogens5030056 -
Abstract
Streptococcus (S.) suis translocates across the intestinal barrier of piglets after intraintestinal application. Based on these findings, an oro-gastrointestinal infection route has been proposed. Thus, the objective of this study was to investigate the survival of S. suis in the porcine
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Streptococcus (S.) suis translocates across the intestinal barrier of piglets after intraintestinal application. Based on these findings, an oro-gastrointestinal infection route has been proposed. Thus, the objective of this study was to investigate the survival of S. suis in the porcine stomach. Whereas surviving bacteria of S. suis serotypes 2 and 9 were not detectable after 60 min of incubation in stomach contents with a comparatively high gastric pH of 5 due to feeding of fine pellets, the number of Salmonella Derby bacteria increased under these conditions. Further experiments confirmed the clearance of S. suis serotypes 2 and 9 within 30 min in stomach contents with a pH of 4.7 independently of the bacterial growth phase. Finally, an oral infection experiment was conducted, feeding each of 18 piglets a diet mixed with 1010 CFU of S. suis serotype 2 or 9. Thorough bacteriological screenings of various mesenteric-intestinal lymph nodes and internal organs after different times of exposure did not lead to any detection of the orally applied challenge strains. In conclusion, the porcine stomach constitutes a very efficient barrier against oro-gastrointenstinal S. suis infections. Conditions leading to the passage of S. suis through the stomach remain to be identified. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Genomic Recombination Leading to Decreased Virulence of Group B Streptococcus in a Mouse Model of Adult Invasive Disease
Pathogens 2016, 5(3), 54; doi:10.3390/pathogens5030054 -
Abstract
Adult invasive disease caused by Group B Streptococcus (GBS) is increasing worldwide. Whole-genome sequencing (WGS) now permits rapid identification of recombination events, a phenomenon that occurs frequently in GBS. Using WGS, we described that strain NGBS375, a capsular serotype V GBS isolate of
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Adult invasive disease caused by Group B Streptococcus (GBS) is increasing worldwide. Whole-genome sequencing (WGS) now permits rapid identification of recombination events, a phenomenon that occurs frequently in GBS. Using WGS, we described that strain NGBS375, a capsular serotype V GBS isolate of sequence type (ST)297, has an ST1 genomic background but has acquired approximately 300 kbp of genetic material likely from an ST17 strain. Here, we examined the virulence of this strain in an in vivo model of GBS adult invasive infection. The mosaic ST297 strain showed intermediate virulence, causing significantly less systemic infection and reduced mortality than a more virulent, serotype V ST1 isolate. Bacteremia induced by the ST297 strain was similar to that induced by a serotype III ST17 strain, which was the least virulent under the conditions tested. Yet, under normalized bacteremia levels, the in vivo intrinsic capacity to induce the production of pro-inflammatory cytokines was similar between the ST297 strain and the virulent ST1 strain. Thus, the diminished virulence of the mosaic strain may be due to reduced capacity to disseminate or multiply in blood during a systemic infection which could be mediated by regulatory factors contained in the recombined region. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Modulation of Human Airway Barrier Functions during Burkholderia thailandensis and Francisella tularensis Infection Running Title: Airway Barrier Functions during Bacterial Infections
Pathogens 2016, 5(3), 53; doi:10.3390/pathogens5030053 -
Abstract
The bronchial epithelium provides protection against pathogens from the inhaled environment through the formation of a highly-regulated barrier. In order to understand the pulmonary diseases melioidosis and tularemia caused by Burkholderia thailandensis and Fransicella tularensis, respectively, the barrier function of the human
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The bronchial epithelium provides protection against pathogens from the inhaled environment through the formation of a highly-regulated barrier. In order to understand the pulmonary diseases melioidosis and tularemia caused by Burkholderia thailandensis and Fransicella tularensis, respectively, the barrier function of the human bronchial epithelium were analysed. Polarised 16HBE14o- or differentiated primary human bronchial epithelial cells (BECs) were exposed to increasing multiplicities of infection (MOI) of B. thailandensis or F. tularensis Live Vaccine Strain and barrier responses monitored over 24–72 h. Challenge of polarized BECs with either bacterial species caused an MOI- and time-dependent increase in ionic permeability, disruption of tight junctions, and bacterial passage from the apical to the basolateral compartment. B. thailandensis was found to be more invasive than F. tularensis. Both bacterial species induced an MOI-dependent increase in TNF-α release. An increase in ionic permeability and TNF-α release was induced by B. thailandensis in differentiated BECs. Pretreatment of polarised BECs with the corticosteroid fluticasone propionate reduced bacterial-dependent increases in ionic permeability, bacterial passage, and TNF-α release. TNF blocking antibody Enbrel® reduced bacterial passage only. BEC barrier properties are disrupted during respiratory bacterial infections and targeting with corticosteroids or anti-TNF compounds may represent a therapeutic option. Full article
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