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Infect Immun. 1999 Mar;67(3):1045-9.

Alpha-toxin and gamma-toxin jointly promote Staphylococcus aureus virulence in murine septic arthritis.

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  • 1Department of Rheumatology, Göteborg University, Göteborg, Sweden. Ing-Marie.Nilsson@immuno.gu.se

Abstract

Septic arthritis is a common and feared complication of staphylococcal infections. Staphylococcus aureus produces a number of potential virulence factors including certain adhesins and enterotoxins. In this study we have assessed the roles of cytolytic toxins in the development of septic arthritis by inoculating mice with S. aureus wild-type strain 8325-4 or isogenic mutants differing in the expression of alpha-, beta-, and gamma-toxin production patterns. Mice inoculated with either an alpha- or beta-toxin mutant showed degrees of inflammation, joint damage, and weight decrease similar to wild-type-inoculated mice. In contrast, mice inoculated with either double (alpha- and gamma-toxin-deficient)- or triple (alpha-, beta-, and gamma-toxin-deficient)-mutant S. aureus strains showed lower frequency and severity of arthritis, measured both clinically and histologically, than mice inoculated with the wild-type strain. We conclude that simultaneous production of alpha- and gamma-toxin is a virulence factor in S. aureus arthritis.

PMID:
10024541
PMCID:
PMC96427
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
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