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Curr Genet. 2016 Feb;62(1):109-13. doi: 10.1007/s00294-015-0522-x. Epub 2015 Sep 25.

Pseudomonas aeruginosa: breaking down barriers.

Author information

1
Department of Microbiology-Immunology, Northwestern University, 303 E. Chicago Ave., Chicago, IL, 60611, USA.
2
Department of Microbiology-Immunology, Northwestern University, 303 E. Chicago Ave., Chicago, IL, 60611, USA. ahauser@northwestern.edu.
3
Department of Medicine, Northwestern University, Chicago, IL, USA. ahauser@northwestern.edu.

Abstract

Many bacterial pathogens have evolved ingenious ways to escape from the lung during pneumonia to cause bacteremia. Unfortunately, the clinical consequences of this spread to the bloodstream are frequently dire. It is therefore important to understand the molecular mechanisms used by pathogens to breach the lung barrier. We have recently shown that Pseudomonas aeruginosa, one of the leading causes of hospital-acquired pneumonia, utilizes the type III secretion system effector ExoS to intoxicate pulmonary epithelial cells. Injection of these cells leads to localized disruption of the pulmonary-vascular barrier and dissemination of P. aeruginosa to the bloodstream. We put these data in the context of previous studies to provide a holistic model of P. aeruginosa dissemination from the lung. Finally, we compare P. aeruginosa dissemination to that of other bacteria to highlight the complexity of bacterial pneumonia. Although respiratory pathogens use distinct and intricate strategies to escape from the lungs, a thorough understanding of these processes can lay the foundation for new therapeutic approaches for bacterial pneumonia.

KEYWORDS:

Bacterial dissemination; ExoS; Pneumonia; Pseudomonas aeruginosa; Type III secretion

PMID:
26407972
PMCID:
PMC4724561
DOI:
10.1007/s00294-015-0522-x
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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