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J Mater Sci Mater Med. 2001 Oct-Dec;12(10-12):979-82.

Binding of vitronectin and clusterin by coagulase-negative staphylococci interfering with complement function.

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Department of Medical Microbiology, Dermatology and Infection, Lund University Sölvegatan 23, S-223 62 Lund, Sweden.


Coagulase-negative staphylococci (CoNS) are commonly associated with infections of prosthetic devices mediated by adsorbed host factors on biomaterial surfaces. Complement activation is known to occur and induce unspecific inflammation around the biomaterials. Human vitronectin (Vn) and clusterin (Clu), two potent inhibitors of complement, can be bound by CoNS. With a hypothesis whether binding of Vn or Clu influences complement activation, two measurements were determined. For Vn, complement activation was measured with a mouse anti-activated human C9 antibody. In the presence of Vn-binding strain, Staphylococcus hemolyticus SM13I, complement activation on a surface pre-coated with Vn occurred as it did in the absence of Vn pre-coating. For S. epidermidis 3380, which does not express binding of Vn, complement activation on a Vn-presented surface was significantly decreased. For Clu, erythrocytes lysis was measured to reflect the end product of complement activation (membrane attack complex). The complement-induced hemolysis increased when human serum was pre-incubated with Clu-binding strains, S. epidermidis J9P. The enhancement of hemolysis by J9P decreased when serum was supplemented by exogenous Clu. The data imply that interaction between CoNS and Vn or Clu interferes with one of their physiological functions, complement inhibition.


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