Matching Items (9)

128123-Thumbnail Image.png

Spaceflight modulates gene expression in the whole blood of astronauts

Description

Astronauts are exposed to a unique combination of stressors during spaceflight, which leads to alterations in their physiology and potentially increases their susceptibility to disease, including infectious diseases. To evaluate

Astronauts are exposed to a unique combination of stressors during spaceflight, which leads to alterations in their physiology and potentially increases their susceptibility to disease, including infectious diseases. To evaluate the potential impact of the spaceflight environment on the regulation of molecular pathways mediating cellular stress responses, we performed a first-of-its-kind pilot study to assess spaceflight-related gene-expression changes in the whole blood of astronauts. Using an array comprised of 234 well-characterized stress-response genes, we profiled transcriptomic changes in six astronauts (four men and two women) from blood preserved before and immediately following the spaceflight. Differentially regulated transcripts included those important for DNA repair, oxidative stress, and protein folding/degradation, including HSP90AB1, HSP27, GPX1, XRCC1, BAG-1, HHR23A, FAP48, and C-FOS. No gender-specific differences or relationship to number of missions flown was observed. This study provides a first assessment of transcriptomic changes occurring in the whole blood of astronauts in response to spaceflight.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2016-12-08

128336-Thumbnail Image.png

Three-dimensional organotypic co-culture model of intestinal epithelial cells and macrophages to study Salmonella enterica colonization patterns

Description

Three-dimensional models of human intestinal epithelium mimic the differentiated form and function of parental tissues often not exhibited by two-dimensional monolayers and respond to Salmonella in key ways that reflect

Three-dimensional models of human intestinal epithelium mimic the differentiated form and function of parental tissues often not exhibited by two-dimensional monolayers and respond to Salmonella in key ways that reflect in vivo infections. To further enhance the physiological relevance of three-dimensional models to more closely approximate in vivo intestinal microenvironments encountered by Salmonella, we developed and validated a novel three-dimensional co-culture infection model of colonic epithelial cells and macrophages using the NASA Rotating Wall Vessel bioreactor. First, U937 cells were activated upon collagen-coated scaffolds. HT-29 epithelial cells were then added and the three-dimensional model was cultured in the bioreactor until optimal differentiation was reached, as assessed by immunohistochemical profiling and bead uptake assays. The new co-culture model exhibited in vivo-like structural and phenotypic characteristics, including three-dimensional architecture, apical-basolateral polarity, well-formed tight/adherens junctions, mucin, multiple epithelial cell types, and functional macrophages. Phagocytic activity of macrophages was confirmed by uptake of inert, bacteria-sized beads. Contribution of macrophages to infection was assessed by colonization studies of Salmonella pathovars with different host adaptations and disease phenotypes (Typhimurium ST19 strain SL1344 and ST313 strain D23580; Typhi Ty2). In addition, Salmonella were cultured aerobically or microaerobically, recapitulating environments encountered prior to and during intestinal infection, respectively. All Salmonella strains exhibited decreased colonization in co-culture (HT-29-U937) relative to epithelial (HT-29) models, indicating antimicrobial function of macrophages. Interestingly, D23580 exhibited enhanced replication/survival in both models following invasion. Pathovar-specific differences in colonization and intracellular co-localization patterns were observed. These findings emphasize the power of incorporating a series of related three-dimensional models within a study to identify microenvironmental factors important for regulating infection.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2017-02-28

128010-Thumbnail Image.png

Conservation of the Low-shear Modeled Microgravity Response in Enterobacteriaceae and Analysis of the trp Genes in this Response

Description

Low fluid shear force, including that encountered in microgravity models, induces bacterial responses, but the range of bacteria capable of responding to this signal remains poorly characterized. We systematically analyzed

Low fluid shear force, including that encountered in microgravity models, induces bacterial responses, but the range of bacteria capable of responding to this signal remains poorly characterized. We systematically analyzed a range of Gram negative Enterobacteriaceae for conservation of the low-shear modeled microgravity (LSMMG) response using phenotypic assays, qPCR, and targeted mutations. Our results indicate LSMMG response conservation across Enterobacteriacae with potential variance in up- or down-regulation of a given response depending on genus. Based on the data, we analyzed the role of the trp operon genes and the TrpR regulator in the LSMMG response using targeted mutations in these genes in S. Typhimurium and E. coli. We found no alteration of the LSMMG response compared to WT in these mutant strains under the conditions tested here. To our knowledge, this study is first-of-kind for Citrobacter, Enterobacter, and Serratia, presents novel data for Escherichia, and provides the first analysis of trp genes in LSMMG responses. This impacts our understanding of how LSMMG affects bacteria and our ability to modify bacteria with this condition in the future.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2014

128629-Thumbnail Image.png

Characterization of the Invasive, Multidrug Resistant Non-typhoidal Salmonella Strain D23580 in a Murine Model of Infection

Description

A distinct pathovar of Salmonella enterica serovar Typhimurium, ST313, has emerged in sub-Saharan Africa as a major cause of fatal bacteremia in young children and HIV-infected adults. D23580, a multidrug

A distinct pathovar of Salmonella enterica serovar Typhimurium, ST313, has emerged in sub-Saharan Africa as a major cause of fatal bacteremia in young children and HIV-infected adults. D23580, a multidrug resistant clinical isolate of ST313, was previously shown to have undergone genome reduction in a manner that resembles that of the more human-restricted pathogen, Salmonella enterica serovar Typhi. It has since been shown through tissue distribution studies that D23580 is able to establish an invasive infection in chickens. However, it remains unclear whether ST313 can cause lethal disease in a non-human host following a natural course of infection. Herein we report that D23580 causes lethal and invasive disease in a murine model of infection following peroral challenge. The LD[subscript 50] of D23580 in female BALB/c mice was 4.7 x 10[superscript 5] CFU. Tissue distribution studies performed 3 and 5 days post-infection confirmed that D23580 was able to more rapidly colonize the spleen, mesenteric lymph nodes and gall bladder in mice when compared to the well-characterized S. Typhimurium strain SL1344. D23580 exhibited enhanced resistance to acid stress relative to SL1344, which may lend towards increased capability to survive passage through the gastrointestinal tract as well as during its intracellular lifecycle. Interestingly, D23580 also displayed higher swimming motility relative to SL1344, S. Typhi strain Ty2, and the ST313 strain A130. Biochemical tests revealed that D23580 shares many similar metabolic features with SL1344, with several notable differences in the Voges-Proskauer and catalase tests, as well alterations in melibiose, and inositol utilization. These results represent the first full duration infection study using an ST313 strain following the entire natural course of disease progression, and serve as a benchmark for ongoing and future studies into the pathogenesis of D23580.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2015-06-19

128767-Thumbnail Image.png

Spaceflight Enhances Cell Aggregation and Random Budding in Candida albicans

Description

This study presents the first global transcriptional profiling and phenotypic characterization of the major human opportunistic fungal pathogen, Candida albicans, grown in spaceflight conditions. Microarray analysis revealed that C. albicans

This study presents the first global transcriptional profiling and phenotypic characterization of the major human opportunistic fungal pathogen, Candida albicans, grown in spaceflight conditions. Microarray analysis revealed that C. albicans subjected to short-term spaceflight culture differentially regulated 452 genes compared to synchronous ground controls, which represented 8.3% of the analyzed ORFs. Spaceflight-cultured C. albicans–induced genes involved in cell aggregation (similar to flocculation), which was validated by microscopic and flow cytometry analysis. We also observed enhanced random budding of spaceflight-cultured cells as opposed to bipolar budding patterns for ground samples, in accordance with the gene expression data. Furthermore, genes involved in antifungal agent and stress resistance were differentially regulated in spaceflight, including induction of ABC transporters and members of the major facilitator family, downregulation of ergosterol-encoding genes, and upregulation of genes involved in oxidative stress resistance. Finally, downregulation of genes involved in actin cytoskeleton was observed. Interestingly, the transcriptional regulator Cap1 and over 30% of the Cap1 regulon was differentially expressed in spaceflight-cultured C. albicans. A potential role for Cap1 in the spaceflight response of C. albicans is suggested, as this regulator is involved in random budding, cell aggregation, and oxidative stress resistance; all related to observed spaceflight-associated changes of C. albicans. While culture of C. albicans in microgravity potentiates a global change in gene expression that could induce a virulence-related phenotype, no increased virulence in a murine intraperitoneal (i.p.) infection model was observed under the conditions of this study. Collectively, our data represent an important basis for the assessment of the risk that commensal flora could play during human spaceflight missions. Furthermore, since the low fluid-shear environment of microgravity is relevant to physical forces encountered by pathogens during the infection process, insights gained from this study could identify novel infectious disease mechanisms, with downstream benefits for the general public.

Contributors

Created

Date Created
  • 2013-12-04

128127-Thumbnail Image.png

Physiological fluid shear alters the virulence potential of invasive multidrug-resistant non-typhoidal Salmonella Typhimurium D23580

Description

Salmonella enterica serovar Typhimurium strains belonging to sequence type ST313 are a major cause of fatal bacteremia among HIV-infected adults and children in sub-Saharan Africa. Unlike “classical” non-typhoidal Salmonella (NTS),

Salmonella enterica serovar Typhimurium strains belonging to sequence type ST313 are a major cause of fatal bacteremia among HIV-infected adults and children in sub-Saharan Africa. Unlike “classical” non-typhoidal Salmonella (NTS), gastroenteritis is often absent during ST313 infections and isolates are most commonly recovered from blood, rather than from stool. This is consistent with observations in animals, in which ST313 strains displayed lower levels of intestinal colonization and higher recovery from deeper tissues relative to classic NTS isolates. A better understanding of the key environmental factors regulating these systemic infections is urgently needed. Our previous studies using dynamic Rotating Wall Vessel (RWV) bioreactor technology demonstrated that physiological levels of fluid shear regulate virulence, gene expression, and stress response profiles of classic S. Typhimurium. Here we provide the first demonstration that fluid shear alters the virulence potential and pathogenesis-related stress responses of ST313 strain D23580 in a manner that differs from classic NTS.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2016-06-09

131560-Thumbnail Image.png

Characterization of the physiological fluid shear response of the foodborne pathogen Salmonella enterica serovar Enteritidis

Description

Spaceflight and spaceflight analogue culture enhance the virulence and pathogenesis-related stress resistance of the foodborne pathogen Salmonella enterica serovar Typhimurium (S. Typhimurium). This is an alarming finding as it suggests

Spaceflight and spaceflight analogue culture enhance the virulence and pathogenesis-related stress resistance of the foodborne pathogen Salmonella enterica serovar Typhimurium (S. Typhimurium). This is an alarming finding as it suggests that astronauts may have an increased risk of infection during spaceflight. This risk is further exacerbated as multiple studies indicate that spaceflight negatively impacts aspects of the immune system. In order to ensure astronaut safety during long term missions, it is important to study the phenotypic effects of the microgravity environment on a range of medically important microbial pathogens that might be encountered by the crew. This ground-based study uses the NASA-engineered Rotating Wall Vessel (RWV) bioreactor as a spaceflight analogue culture system to grow bacteria under low fluid shear forces relative to those encountered in microgravity, and interestingly, in the intestinal tract during infection. The culture environment in the RWV is commonly referred to as low shear modeled microgravity (LSMMG). In this study, we characterized the stationary phase stress response of the enteric pathogen, Salmonella enterica serovar Enteritidis (S. Enteritidis), to LSMMG culture. We showed that LSMMG enhanced the resistance of stationary phase cultures of S. Enteritidis to acid and thermal stressors, which differed from the LSSMG stationary phase response of the closely related pathovar, S. Typhimurium. Interestingly, LSMMG increased the ability of both S. Enteritidis and S. Typhimurium to adhere to, invade into, and survive within an in vitro 3-D intestinal co-culture model containing immune cells. Our results indicate that LSMMG regulates pathogenesis-related characteristics of S. Enteritidis in ways that may present an increased health risk to astronauts during spaceflight missions.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2020-05

128885-Thumbnail Image.png

Evaluation of Microorganisms Cultured from Injured and Repressed Tissue Regeneration Sites in Endangered Giant Aquatic Ozark Hellbender Salamanders

Description

Investigation into the causes underlying the rapid, global amphibian decline provides critical insight into the effects of changing ecosystems. Hypothesized and confirmed links between amphibian declines, disease, and environmental changes

Investigation into the causes underlying the rapid, global amphibian decline provides critical insight into the effects of changing ecosystems. Hypothesized and confirmed links between amphibian declines, disease, and environmental changes are increasingly represented in published literature. However, there are few long-term amphibian studies that include data on population size, abnormality/injury rates, disease, and habitat variables to adequately assess changes through time. We cultured and identified microorganisms isolated from abnormal/injured and repressed tissue regeneration sites of the endangered Ozark Hellbender, Cryptobranchus alleganiensis bishopi, to discover potential causative agents responsible for their significant decline in health and population. This organism and our study site were chosen because the population and habitat of C. a. bishopi have been intensively studied from 1969–2009, and the abnormality/injury rate and apparent lack of regeneration were established. Although many bacterial and fungal isolates recovered were common environmental organisms, several opportunistic pathogens were identified in association with only the injured tissues of C.a. bishopi. Bacterial isolates included Aeromonas hydrophila, a known amphibian pathogen, Granulicetella adiacens, Gordonai terrae, Stenotrophomonas maltophilia, Aerococcus viridans, Streptococcus pneumoniae and a variety of Pseudomonads, including Pseudomonas aeruginosa, P. stutzeri, and P. alcaligenes. Fungal isolates included species in the genera Penicillium, Acremonium, Cladosporium, Curvularia, Fusarium, Streptomycetes, and the Class Hyphomycetes. Many of the opportunistic pathogens identified are known to form biofilms. Lack of isolation of the same organism from all wounds suggests that the etiological agent responsible for the damage to C. a. bishopi may not be a single organism. To our knowledge, this is the first study to profile the external microbial consortia cultured from a Cryptobranchid salamander. The incidence of abnormalities/injury and retarded regeneration in C. a. bishopi may have many contributing factors including disease and habitat degradation. Results from this study may provide insight into other amphibian population declines.

Contributors

Created

Date Created
  • 2011-12-19

154601-Thumbnail Image.png

Fluid shear force regulates the pathogenesis-related stress responses of invasive multidrug resistant Salmonella typhimurium 5579

Description

The emergence of invasive non-Typhoidal Salmonella (iNTS) infections belonging to sequence type (ST) 313 are associated with severe bacteremia and high mortality in sub-Saharan Africa. Distinct features of ST313 strains

The emergence of invasive non-Typhoidal Salmonella (iNTS) infections belonging to sequence type (ST) 313 are associated with severe bacteremia and high mortality in sub-Saharan Africa. Distinct features of ST313 strains include resistance to multiple antibiotics, extensive genomic degradation, and atypical clinical diagnosis including bloodstream infections, respiratory symptoms, and fever. Herein, I report the use of dynamic bioreactor technology to profile the impact of physiological fluid shear levels on the pathogenesis-related responses of ST313 pathovar, 5579. I show that culture of 5579 under these conditions induces profoundly different pathogenesis-related phenotypes than those normally observed when cultures are grown conventionally. Surprisingly, in response to physiological fluid shear, 5579 exhibited positive swimming motility, which was unexpected, since this strain was initially thought to be non-motile. Moreover, fluid shear altered the resistance of 5579 to acid, oxidative and bile stress, as well as its ability to colonize human colonic epithelial cells. This work leverages from and advances studies over the past 16 years in the Nickerson lab, which are at the forefront of bacterial mechanosensation and further demonstrates that bacterial pathogens are “hardwired” to respond to the force of fluid shear in ways that are not observed during conventional culture, and stresses the importance of mimicking the dynamic physical force microenvironment when studying host-pathogen interactions. The results from this study lay the foundation for future work to determine the underlying mechanisms operative in 5579 that are responsible for these phenotypic observations.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2016