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Cell Microbiol. 2008 Mar;10(3):729-40. Epub 2007 Nov 27.

Pseudomonas aeruginosa virulence genes identified in a Dictyostelium host model.

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Département de Physiologie Cellulaire et Métabolisme, Université de Genève, Centre Médeical Universitaire, 1 rue Michel Servet, CH-1211 Geneva 4, Switzerland.


The human pathogen Pseudomonas aeruginosa has been shown previously to use similar virulence factors when infecting mammalian hosts or Dictyostelium amoebae. Here we randomly mutagenized a clinical isolate of P. aeruginosa, and identified mutants with attenuated virulence towards Dictyostelium. These mutant strains also exhibited a strong decrease in virulence when infecting Drosophila and mice, confirming that P. aeruginosa makes use of similar virulence traits to confront these very different hosts. Further characterization of these bacterial mutants showed that TrpD is important for the induction of the quorum-sensing circuit, while PchH and PchI are involved in the induction of the type III secretion system. These results demonstrate the usefulness and the relevance of the Dictyostelium host model to identify and analyse new virulence genes in P. aeruginosa.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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