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Trends Microbiol. 2008 Aug;16(8):388-96. doi: 10.1016/j.tim.2008.05.006. Epub 2008 Jul 9.

Modulation of stress and virulence in Listeria monocytogenes.

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  • 1Department of Microbiology, Mahidol University, 272 Rama 6 Road, Bangkok 10400, Thailand.


Listeria monocytogenes can respond rapidly to changing environmental conditions, as illustrated by its ability to transition from a saprophyte to an orally transmitted facultative intracellular pathogen. Differential associations between various alternative sigma factors and a core RNA polymerase provide a transcriptional mechanism for regulating bacterial gene expression that is crucial for survival in rapidly changing conditions. Alternative sigma factors are key components of complex L. monocytogenes regulatory networks that include multiple transcriptional regulators of stress-response and virulence genes, regulation of genes encoding other regulators, and regulation of small RNAs. In this article, the contributions of various sigma factors to L. monocytogenes stress response and virulence are described.

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