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J Bacteriol. 2003 Oct;185(19):5807-14.

Inter- and intraclonal diversity of the Pseudomonas aeruginosa proteome manifests within the secretome.

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Institute of Medical Microbiology, Hannover Medical School, 30265 Hannover, Germany.


The proteomes of cultured Pseudomonas aeruginosa isolates from chronically infected cystic fibrosis (CF) lungs were compared by using genetically divergent clones and isogenic morphotypes of one strain. Cellular extracts gave very similar protein patterns in two-dimensional gels, suggesting that the conserved species-specific core genome encodes proteins that are expressed under standard culture conditions in vitro. In contrast, the protein profiles of extracts of culture supernatants were dependent on the growth phase, and there were significant differences between clones. The profiles also varied within clonally related morphotypes from one CF patient, including a hyperpiliated small-colony variant. Mass spectrometry revealed that this variant overexpressed proteins secreted by the type I secretion system (including proteins involved in iron acquisition) and by the type III secretion system. Furthermore, the proteins in the supernatant extracts from the small-colony variant which were recognized by sera from different CF patients varied greatly. We concluded that the secretome expression is a sensitive measure of P. aeruginosa strain variation.

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