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Microb Pathog. 2005 Feb-Mar;38(2-3):125-32.

Apoptotic activity and sub-cellular localization of a T4SS-associated CagE-homologue in Actinobacillus actinomycetemcomitans.

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School of Medicine and Dentistry, University of Rochester Medical Centre, 625 Elmwood Ave. Rochester, NY, 14620-2989, USA.


A potent virulence factor, cagE homologue of Actinobacillus actinomycetemcomitans, was identified via an expression cloning strategy and periodontitis-associated CD4(+)T-cells of a humanized mouse model. Through the immuno-gold labeling with transmission electron microscopy, immunofluorescent staining, in vitro co-cultures and Western blot studies, the resulting data clearly demonstrate that: (i) in CagE-homologue treated human epithelia in vitro, there are ultra-structural features of plasma membrane blebbing, sub-cellular disorganization with condensed and marginalized chromatins along the nuclear membrane, consistent with the pro-apoptotic characteristics, (ii) the disturbed membrane integrity detected above is associated with localization of the CagE proteins on target cell surface, and (iii) CagE-homologue is located in the cytoplasm of A. actinomycetemcomitans and associated with a bacterial type-IV secretion system (T4SS), suggesting that its translocation is required for secretion. Thus, CagE-homologue may be critically involved in A. actinomycetemcomitans-induced tissue destruction, inflammation and subsequent adverse immunity in periodontal pathogenesis.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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