Send to

Choose Destination
Curr Biol. 2003 Jan 8;13(1):27-36.

Naip5 affects host susceptibility to the intracellular pathogen Legionella pneumophila.

Author information

Howard Hughes Medical Institute, Harvard Medical School, 02115, Boston, MA, USA.



Legionella pneumophila is a gram-negative bacterial pathogen that is the cause of Legionnaires' Disease. Legionella produces disease because it can replicate inside a specialized compartment of host macrophages. Macrophages isolated from various inbred mice exhibit large differences in permissiveness for intracellular replication of Legionella. A locus affecting this host-resistance phenotype, Lgn1, has been mapped to chromosome 13, but the responsible gene has not been identified.


Here, we report that Naip5 (also known as Birc1e) influences susceptibility to Legionella. Naip5 encodes a protein that is homologous to plant innate immunity (so-called "resistance") proteins and has been implicated in signaling pathways related to apoptosis regulation. Detailed recombination mapping and analysis of expression implicates Naip5 in the Legionella permissiveness differences among mouse strains. A bacterial artificial chromosome (BAC) transgenic line expressing a nonpermissive allele of Naip5 exhibits a reduction in macrophage Legionella permissiveness. In addition, morpholino-based antisense inhibition of Naip5 causes an increase in the Legionella permissiveness of macrophages.


We conclude that polymorphisms in Naip5 are involved in the permissiveness differences of mouse macrophages for intracellular Legionella replication. We speculate that Naip5 is a functional mammalian homolog of plant "resistance" proteins that monitor for, and initiate host response to, the presence of secreted bacterial virulence proteins.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free full text

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Elsevier Science
Loading ...
Support Center