1887

Abstract

Cytolethal distending toxin (CDT) is a novel bacterial toxin that is produced by a variety of pathogenic bacteria. The mechanism of cytotoxicity of CDT is unique in that it enters into eukaryotic cells and breaks double-stranded DNA. This initiates the cell's own DNA damage-response mechanisms, resulting in the arrest of the cell cycle at the G/M boundary. Affected cells enlarge until they finally undergo programmed cell death. This review encompasses recent work on CDT and focuses on the molecular mechanisms used by this toxin to block cell-cycle progression, the benefit to the bacterium of possession of this toxin and the clinical relevance of intoxication.

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2005-03-01
2019-11-13
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