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PLoS Pathog. 2008 Sep 12;4(9):e1000144. doi: 10.1371/journal.ppat.1000144.

Listeriolysin S, a novel peptide haemolysin associated with a subset of lineage I Listeria monocytogenes.

Author information

1
Department of Microbiology, University College Cork, Cork, Ireland. p.cotter@ucc.ie

Abstract

Streptolysin S (SLS) is a bacteriocin-like haemolytic and cytotoxic virulence factor that plays a key role in the virulence of Group A Streptococcus (GAS), the causative agent of pharyngitis, impetigo, necrotizing fasciitis and streptococcal toxic shock syndrome. Although it has long been thought that SLS and related peptides are produced by GAS and related streptococci only, there is evidence to suggest that a number of the most notorious Gram-positive pathogenic bacteria, including Listeria monocytogenes, Clostridium botulinum and Staphylococcus aureus, produce related peptides. The distribution of the L. monocytogenes cluster is particularly noteworthy in that it is found exclusively among a subset of lineage I strains; i.e., those responsible for the majority of outbreaks of listeriosis. Expression of these genes results in the production of a haemolytic and cytotoxic factor, designated Listeriolysin S, which contributes to virulence of the pathogen as assessed by murine- and human polymorphonuclear neutrophil-based studies. Thus, in the process of establishing the existence of an extended family of SLS-like modified virulence peptides (MVPs), the genetic basis for the enhanced virulence of a proportion of lineage I L. monocytogenes may have been revealed.

PMID:
18787690
PMCID:
PMC2522273
DOI:
10.1371/journal.ppat.1000144
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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