1887

Abstract

Two closely related pathogens, and , share a number of virulence factors. Filamentous haemagglutinin (FHA) is widely regarded as the dominant adhesin of , and its multiple binding activities have been well characterized. This large protein is produced and secreted at high levels by and significantly lower levels by strains. FHA secretion is mediated by a single outer-membrane accessory protein, FhaC. The genes encoding FHA and FhaC in were characterized by sequencing and functional analyses and are highly similar to those of . The most distinctive feature of FHA is additional repeats in the N-terminal portion of the predicted protein. Interestingly, a point mutation in the promoter region of the GP1 isolate, relative to other isolates, was found to be detrimental to promoter activity and to FHA production. FhaC and the N-terminal secretion domain of FHA of were fully functional for secretion in . Thus, the different levels of FHA secretion by these species might reflect differences in physiology, composition and structure of cell envelope, or differential protein degradation. Characterization of FHA expression and function may provide clues as to the basis of host species tropism, tissue localization and receptor recognition.

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2000-05-01
2019-10-15
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