Invasion and persistent intracellular colonization of erythrocytes : A unique parasitic strategy of the emerging pathogen Bartonella

Schulein, R. and Seubert, A. and Gille, C. and Lanz, C. and Hansmann, Y. and Piemont, Y. and Dehio, C.. (2001) Invasion and persistent intracellular colonization of erythrocytes : A unique parasitic strategy of the emerging pathogen Bartonella. Journal of experimental medicine, Vol. 193, No. 9. pp. 1077-1086.

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Official URL: http://edoc.unibas.ch/dok/A5259029

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The expanding genus Bartonella includes zoonotic and human-specific pathogens that can cause a wide range of clinical manifestations. A productive infection allowing bacterial transmission by blood-sucking arthropods is marked by an intraerythrocytic bacteremia that occurs exclusively in specific human or animal reservoir hosts. Incidental human infection by animal-adapted bartonellae can cause disease without evidence for erythrocyte parasitism. A better understanding of the intraerythrocytic lifestyle of bartonellae may permit the design of strategies to control the reservoir and transmittable stages of these emerging pathogens. We have dissected the process of Bartonella erythrocyte parasitism in experimentally infected animals using a novel approach for tracking blood infections based on flow cytometric quantification of green fluorescent protein-expressing bacteria during their interaction with in vivo-biotinylated erythrocytes. Bacteremia onset occurs several days after inoculation by a synchronous wave of bacterial invasion into mature erythrocytes. Intracellular bacteria replicate until reaching a stagnant number, which is sustained for the remaining life span of the infected erythrocyte. The initial wave of erythrocyte infection is followed by reinfection waves occurring at intervals of several days. Our findings unravel a unique bacterial persistence strategy adapted to a nonhemolytic intracellular colonization of erythrocytes that preserves the pathogen for efficient transmission by blood-sucking arthropods.
Faculties and Departments:05 Faculty of Science > Departement Biozentrum > Infection Biology > Molecular Microbiology (Dehio)
UniBasel Contributors:Dehio, Christoph
Item Type:Article, refereed
Article Subtype:Research Article
Publisher:Rockefeller University Press
Note:Publication type according to Uni Basel Research Database: Journal article
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Last Modified:31 Dec 2015 10:44
Deposited On:22 Mar 2012 13:35

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