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Science. 2006 Jun 9;312(5779):1526-30.

A virulence locus of Pseudomonas aeruginosa encodes a protein secretion apparatus.

Author information

  • 1Department of Microbiology and Molecular Genetics, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA 02115, USA.

Abstract

Bacterial pathogens frequently use protein secretion to mediate interactions with their hosts. Here we found that a virulence locus (HSI-I) of Pseudomonas aeruginosa encodes a protein secretion apparatus. The apparatus assembled in discrete subcellular locations and exported Hcp1, a hexameric protein that forms rings with a 40 angstrom internal diameter. Regulatory patterns of HSI-I suggested that the apparatus functions during chronic infections. We detected Hcp1 in pulmonary secretions of cystic fibrosis (CF) patients and Hcp1-specific antibodies in their sera. Thus, HSI-I likely contributes to the pathogenesis of P. aeruginosa in CF patients. HSI-I-related loci are widely distributed among bacterial pathogens and may play a general role in mediating host interactions.

PMID:
16763151
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PMCID:
PMC2800167
Free PMC Article

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