Virulence, 01 January 2019, Vol.10(1), pp.68-81
Acinetobacter baumannii is a Gram-negative pathogen that causes a multitude of nosocomial infections. The Acinetobacter trimeric autotransporter adhesin (Ata) belongs to the superfamily of trimeric autotransporter adhesins which are important virulence factors in many Gram-negative species. Phylogenetic profiling revealed that ata is present in 78% of all sequenced A. baumannii isolates but only in 2% of the closely related species A. calcoaceticus and A. pittii. Employing a markerless ata deletion mutant of A. baumannii ATCC 19606 we show that adhesion to and invasion into human endothelial and epithelial cells depend on Ata. Infection of primary human umbilical cord vein endothelial cells (HUVECs) with A. baumannii led to the secretion of interleukin (IL)-6 and IL-8 in a time- and Ata-dependent manner. Furthermore, infection of HUVECs by WT A. baumannii was associated with higher rates of apoptosis via activation of caspases-3 and caspase-7, but not necrosis, in comparison to ∆ata. Ata deletion mutants were furthermore attenuated in their ability to kill larvae of Galleria mellonella and to survive in larvae when injected at sublethal doses. This indicates that Ata is an important multifunctional virulence factor in A. baumannii that mediates adhesion and invasion, induces apoptosis and contributes to pathogenicity in vivo.
Adhesion ; Endothelial Cells ; Host Cell Response ; Huvec ; Galleria Mellonella ; Biology
Taylor & Francis (Taylor & Francis Group)
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