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Infect Immun. 2005 Sep;73(9):6026-38.

Identification of group A Streptococcus antigenic determinants upregulated in vivo.

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Department of Microbiology, University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario, Canada.


Group A Streptococcus (GAS) causes a range of diseases in humans, from mild noninvasive infections to severe invasive infections. The molecular basis for the varying severity of disease remains unclear. We identified genes expressed during invasive disease using in vivo-induced antigen technology (IVIAT), applied for the first time in a gram-positive organism. Convalescent-phase sera from patients with invasive disease were pooled, adsorbed against antigens derived from in vitro-grown GAS, and used to screen a GAS genomic expression library. A murine model of invasive GAS disease was included as an additional source of sera for screening. Sequencing DNA inserts from clones reactive with both human and mouse sera indicated 16 open reading frames with homology to genes involved in metabolic activity to genes of unknown function. Of these, seven genes were assessed for their differential expression by quantitative real-time PCR both in vivo, utilizing a murine model of invasive GAS disease, and in vitro at different time points of growth. Three gene products-a putative penicillin-binding protein 1A, a putative lipoprotein, and a conserved hypothetical protein homologous to a putative translation initiation inhibitor in Vibrio vulnificus-were upregulated in vivo, suggesting that these genes play a role during invasive disease.

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