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Cell Host Microbe. 2014 Nov 12;16(5):592-604. doi: 10.1016/j.chom.2014.10.006. Epub 2014 Nov 12.

The acetate switch of an intestinal pathogen disrupts host insulin signaling and lipid metabolism.

Author information

1
Division of Infectious Diseases, Boston Children's Hospital, Harvard Medical School, 300 Longwood Avenue, Boston, MA 02115, USA.
2
Department of Microbiology and Immunobiology, Harvard Medical School, 77 Avenue Louis Pasteur, Boston, MA 02115, USA.
3
Division of Infectious Diseases, Boston Children's Hospital, Harvard Medical School, 300 Longwood Avenue, Boston, MA 02115, USA; Department of Molecular Biology and Biotechnology, Tezpur University, Assam 784 028, India.
4
Division of Infectious Diseases, Boston Children's Hospital, Harvard Medical School, 300 Longwood Avenue, Boston, MA 02115, USA; Department of Microbiology and Immunobiology, Harvard Medical School, 77 Avenue Louis Pasteur, Boston, MA 02115, USA. Electronic address: paula.watnick@childrens.harvard.edu.

Abstract

Vibrio cholerae is lethal to the model host Drosophila melanogaster through mechanisms not solely attributable to cholera toxin. To examine additional virulence determinants, we performed a genetic screen in V. cholerae-infected Drosophila and identified the two-component system CrbRS. CrbRS controls transcriptional activation of acetyl-CoA synthase-1 (ACS-1) and thus regulates the acetate switch, in which bacteria transition from excretion to assimilation of environmental acetate. The resultant loss of intestinal acetate leads to deactivation of host insulin signaling and lipid accumulation in enterocytes, resulting in host lethality. These metabolic effects are not observed upon infection with ΔcrbS or Δacs1 V. cholerae mutants. Additionally, uninfected flies lacking intestinal commensals, which supply short chain fatty acids (SCFAs) such as acetate, also exhibit altered insulin signaling and intestinal steatosis, which is reversed upon acetate supplementation. Thus, acetate consumption by V. cholerae alters host metabolism, and dietary acetate supplementation may ameliorate some sequelae of cholera.

Comment in

PMID:
25525791
PMCID:
PMC4272434
DOI:
10.1016/j.chom.2014.10.006
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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