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Trends Microbiol. 2014 Dec;22(12):676-85. doi: 10.1016/j.tim.2014.09.002. Epub 2014 Oct 6.

What role does the quorum-sensing accessory gene regulator system play during Staphylococcus aureus bacteremia?

Author information

1
Section of Microbiology, MRC Centre for Molecular Bacteriology and Infection, Imperial College, Armstrong Road, London SW7 2AZ, UK.
2
Section of Microbiology, MRC Centre for Molecular Bacteriology and Infection, Imperial College, Armstrong Road, London SW7 2AZ, UK. Electronic address: a.edwards@imperial.ac.uk.

Abstract

Staphylococcus aureus is a major cause of bacteremia, which frequently results in serious secondary infections such as infective endocarditis, osteomyelitis, and septic arthritis. The ability of S. aureus to cause such a wide range of infections has been ascribed to its huge armoury of different virulence factors, many of which are under the control of the quorum-sensing accessory gene regulator (Agr) system. However, a significant fraction of S. aureus bacteremia cases are caused by agr-defective isolates, calling into question the role of Agr in invasive staphylococcal infections. This review draws on recent work to define the role of Agr during bacteremia and explain why the loss of this major virulence regulator is sometimes a price worth paying for S. aureus.

KEYWORDS:

Staphylococcus; accessory gene regulator; antibiotic resistance; bacteremia; bloodstream infection; quorum-sensing

PMID:
25300477
DOI:
10.1016/j.tim.2014.09.002
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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