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Curr Opin Microbiol. 2009 Feb;12(1):67-73. doi: 10.1016/j.mib.2008.12.004. Epub 2009 Jan 20.

Legionella pneumophila Dot/Icm translocated substrates: a sum of parts.

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Department of Molecular Biology and Microbiology, Tufts University School of Medicine, 150 Harrison Avenue, Boston, MA 02111, USA.


Legionella pneumophila is an intracellular pathogen of freshwater amoeba and of alveolar macrophages in human hosts. After phagocytosis, L. pneumophila establishes a unique intracellular vacuolar niche that avoids entry into the lysosomal network. Critical for L. pneumophila intracellular growth is the Dot/Icm type IVB translocation system. Although over 80 substrates of the Dot/Icm apparatus have been identified, individual substrates are often genetically redundant, complicating their analysis. Deletion of critical Dot/Icm translocation system components causes a variety of defects during intracellular growth. Many of these effects on the host cell likely result from the actions of one or more Dot/Icm translocated substrates. Loss of single substrates never generates the profound effects observed in strains lacking translocation system components.

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