Max Planck Institute For Infektionsbiologie

Berlin, Germany

Max Planck Institute For Infektionsbiologie

Berlin, Germany
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Morelli G.,Max Planck Institute For Infektionsbiologie | Morelli G.,Max Planck Institute For Molekulare Genetik | Song Y.,Beijing Institute of Microbiology and Epidemiology | Song Y.,University College Cork | And 28 more authors.
Nature Genetics | Year: 2010

Plague is a pandemic human invasive disease caused by the bacterial agent Yersinia pestis. We here report a comparison of 17 whole genomes of Y. pestis isolates from global sources. We also screened a global collection of 286 Y. pestis isolates for 933 SNPs using Sequenom MassArray SNP typing. We conducted phylogenetic analyses on this sequence variation dataset, assigned isolates to populations based on maximum parsimony and, from these results, made inferences regarding historical transmission routes. Our phylogenetic analysis suggests that Y. pestis evolved in or near China and spread through multiple radiations to Europe, South America, Africa and Southeast Asia, leading to country-specific lineages that can be traced by lineage-specific SNPs. All 626 current isolates from the United States reflect one radiation, and 82 isolates from Madagascar represent a second radiation. Subsequent local microevolution of Y. pestis is marked by sequential, geographically specific SNPs. © 2010 Nature America, Inc. All rights reserved.


Moodley Y.,Max Planck Institute For Infektionsbiologie | Moodley Y.,University of Veterinary Medicine Vienna | Linz B.,Max Planck Institute For Infektionsbiologie | Linz B.,Pennsylvania State University | And 11 more authors.
PLoS Pathogens | Year: 2012

When modern humans left Africa ca. 60,000 years ago (60 kya), they were already infected with Helicobacter pylori, and these bacteria have subsequently diversified in parallel with their human hosts. But how long were humans infected by H. pylori prior to the out-of-Africa event? Did this co-evolution predate the emergence of modern humans, spanning the species divide? To answer these questions, we investigated the diversity of H. pylori in Africa, where both humans and H. pylori originated. Three distinct H. pylori populations are native to Africa: hpNEAfrica in Afro-Asiatic and Nilo-Saharan speakers, hpAfrica1 in Niger-Congo speakers and hpAfrica2 in South Africa. Rather than representing a sustained co-evolution over millions of years, we find that the coalescent for all H. pylori plus its closest relative H. acinonychis dates to 88-116 kya. At that time the phylogeny split into two primary super-lineages, one of which is associated with the former hunter-gatherers in southern Africa known as the San. H. acinonychis, which infects large felines, resulted from a later host jump from the San, 43-56 kya. These dating estimates, together with striking phylogenetic and quantitative human-bacterial similarities show that H. pylori is approximately as old as are anatomically modern humans. They also suggest that H. pylori may have been acquired via a single host jump from an unknown, non-human host. We also find evidence for a second Out of Africa migration in the last 52,000 years, because hpEurope is a hybrid population between hpAsia2 and hpNEAfrica, the latter of which arose in northeast Africa 36-52 kya, after the Out of Africa migrations around 60 kya. © 2012 Moodley et al.


Gonzalez-Fernandez J.,Complutense University of Madrid | Daschner A.,Institute Investigacion Sanitaria Hospital Universitario Of La Princesa | Nieuwenhuizen N.E.,Max Planck Institute For Infektionsbiologie | Lopata A.L.,James Cook University | And 3 more authors.
International Journal for Parasitology | Year: 2015

Gastro-allergic anisakiasis and Anisakis sensitisation associated chronic urticaria are diseases which differ in their IgE and IgG4 responses against both crude extract and specific allergens. Anisakis and Ascaris are closely related nematodes that usually cause problems with specificity in immunodiagnostics. In this study we measured IgE and IgG4 antibodies against Anisakis simplex sensu lato (s. l.) and Ascaris suum haemoglobins in sera of 21 gastro-allergic anisakiasis and 23 chronic urticaria patients. We used a capture ELISA with the anti-. Anisakis haemoglobin monoclonal antibody 4E8g, which also recognises Ascaris haemoglobin. In addition, we determined specific IgE and IgG4 to both nematodes by indirect ELISA and immunoblotting. Anti-. A. simplex s. l. haemoglobin IgE and IgG4 levels were higher in gastro-allergic anisakiasis than in chronic urticaria patients (. P=0.002 and 0.026, respectively). Surprisingly, no patient had detectable IgE levels against A. suum haemoglobin. Finally, we carried out an in silico study of the B-cell epitopes of both haemoglobin molecules. Five epitopes were predicted in Anisakis pegreffii and four in A. suum haemoglobin. The epitope propensity values of Anisakis haemoglobin in the equivalent IgE binding region of the allergenic haemoglobin Chi t 1 from Chironomus thummi, were higher those of the Ascaris haemoglobin. In conclusion, we describe A. simplex haemoglobin as a new major allergen (. Ani s 13), being recognised by a large number (64.3%) of sensitised patients and up to 80.9% in patients with gastro-allergic anisakiasis. The presence of a specific epitope and the different values of epitope propensity between Anisakis and Ascaris haemoglobin could explain the lack of cross-reactivity between the two molecules. The absence of IgE reactivity to Ascaris haemoglobin in Anisakis patients makes Anisakis haemoglobin (. Ani s 13) a potential candidate for developing more specific diagnosis tools. © 2015 Australian Society for Parasitology Inc.


Herzig B.,Max Planck Institute for Chemistry | Yakulov T.A.,Max Planck Institute for Chemistry | Yakulov T.A.,University Hospital Freiburg | Klinge K.,Max Planck Institute for Chemistry | And 5 more authors.
Biology Open | Year: 2014

Self-renewing stem cells are pools of undifferentiated cells, which are maintained in cellular niche environments by distinct tissuespecific signalling pathways. In Drosophila melanogaster, female germline stem cells (GSCs) are maintained in a somatic niche of the gonads by BMP signalling. Here we report a novel function of the Drosophila kinase Bällchen (BALL), showing that its cell autonomous role is to maintain the self-renewing capacity of female GSCs independent of BMP signalling. ball mutant GSCs are eliminated from the niche and subsequently differentiate into mature eggs, indicating that BALL is largely dispensable for differentiation. Similar to female GSCs, BALL is required to maintain self-renewal of male GSCs, suggesting a tissue independent requirement of BALL for self-renewal of germline stem cells. ©2014. Published by The Company of Biologists Ltd |.


Severo M.S.,Max Planck Institute For Infektionsbiologie | Levashina E.A.,Max Planck Institute For Infektionsbiologie
Current Opinion in Insect Science | Year: 2014

Malaria, the human infectious disease caused by Plasmodium parasites, is transmitted by the bite of the mosquito Anopheles gambiae. Mosquitoes actively detect Plasmodium and mount efficient responses that eliminate the majority of invading parasites. Such responses include hemocyte-mediated defenses, activation of the complement-like system, melanization, and immune signaling cascades. This review aims to summarize our current knowledge of the mosquito immune responses to Plasmodium and to highlight the remaining gaps in our understanding of these events. © 2014 Elsevier Inc.


Rieder R.,Max Planck Institute For Infektionsbiologie
BioSpektrum | Year: 2010

Small non-coding RNAs (sRNAs) have received increasing attention as potent regulators of gene expression in virtually all organisms. We are particularly interested in the discovery and molecular characterization of such sRNAs in bacterial pathogens.


Nieuwenhuizen N.E.,University of Cape Town | Nieuwenhuizen N.E.,Max Planck Institute For Infektionsbiologie | Meter J.M.,University of Cape Town | Horsnell W.G.,University of Cape Town | And 8 more authors.
PLoS Neglected Tropical Diseases | Year: 2013

Background:Nematode secreted haemoglobins have unusually high affinity for oxygen and possess nitric oxide deoxygenase, and catalase activity thought to be important in protection against host immune responses to infection. In this study, we generated a monoclonal antibody (48Eg) against haemoglobin of the nematode Anisakis pegreffii, and aimed to characterize cross-reactivity of 4E8g against haemoglobins of different nematodes and its potential to mediate protective immunity against a murine hookworm infection.Methodology/Principal Findings:Immunoprecipitation was used to isolate the 4E8g-binding antigen in Anisakis and Ascaris extracts, which were identified as haemoglobins by peptide mass fingerprinting and MS/MS. Immunological cross-reactivity was also demonstrated with haemoglobin of the rodent hookworm N. brasiliensis. Immunogenicity of nematode haemoglobin in mice and humans was tested by immunoblotting. Anisakis haemoglobin was recognized by IgG and IgE antibodies of Anisakis-infected mice, while Ascaris haemoglobin was recognized by IgG but not IgE antibodies in mouse and human sera. Sequencing of Anisakis haemoglobin revealed high similarity to haemoglobin of a related marine nematode, Psuedoterranova decipiens, which lacks the four -HKEE repeats of Ascaris haemoglobin important in octamer assembly. The localization of haemoglobin in the different parasites was examined by immunohistochemistry and associated with the excretory-secretary ducts in Anisakis, Ascaris and N. brasiliensis. Anisakis haemoglobin was strongly expressed in the L3 stage, unlike Ascaris haemoglobin, which is reportedly mainly expressed in adult worms. Passive immunization of mice with 4E8g prior to infection with N. brasiliensis enhanced protective Th2 immunity and led to a significant decrease in worm burdens.Conclusion:The monoclonal antibody 4E8g targets haemoglobin in broadly equivalent anatomical locations in parasitic nematodes and enhances host immunity to a hookworm infection. © 2013 Nieuwenhuizen et al.


Heimesaat M.M.,Charité - Medical University of Berlin | Nogai A.,Charité - Medical University of Berlin | Bereswill S.,Charité - Medical University of Berlin | Plickert R.,Charité - Medical University of Berlin | And 8 more authors.
Gut | Year: 2010

Background: The bacterial microflora aggravates graft-versus-host-disease (GvHD) after allogeneic stem cell transplantation, but the underlying mechanisms of manifestations of intestinal GvHD (iGvHD) in the gut remain poorly understood. Aim: To analyse the gut flora composition and the impact of bacterial sensing via Toll-like receptors (TLRs) in iGvHD. Methods: By mimicking clinical low-intensity conditioning regimens used in humans, a novel irradiation independent, treosulfan and cyclophosphamide-based murine allogeneic transplantation model was established. A global survey of the intestinal microflora by cultural and molecular methods was performed, the intestinal immunopathology in TLR-deficient recipient mice with iGvHD investigated and finally, the impact of anti-TLR9 treatment on iGvHD development assessed. Results: The inflammatory responses in iGvHD were accompanied by gut flora shifts towards enterobacteria, enterococci and Bacteroides/Prevotella spp. Analysis of iGvHD in MyD88 -/-, TRIF -/-, TLR2/4 -/-, and TLR9 -/- recipient mice showed that bacterial sensing via TLRs was essential for iGvHD development. Acute iGvHD was characterised by increasing numbers of apoptotic cells, proliferating cells, T cells and neutrophils within the colon. These responses were significantly reduced in MyD88 -/-, TLR2/4 -/-, TRIF -/- and TLR9 -/- mice, as compared with wild-type controls. However, TRIF-/- and TLR2/4 -/- mice were not protected from mortality, whereas TLR9 -/- mice displayed increased survival rates. The important role of TLR9-mediated immunopathology was independently confirmed by significantly reduced macroscopic disease symptoms and colonic apoptosis as well as by reduced T-cell and neutrophil numbers within the colon after treatment with a synthetic inhibitory oligonucleotide. Conclusions: These results emphasise the critical role of gut microbiota, innate immunity and TLR9 in iGvHD and highlight anti-TLR9 strategies as novel therapeutic options.


Schierack P.,Free University of Berlin | Kleta S.,Free University of Berlin | Kleta S.,Bundesinstitut For Risikobewertung | Tedin K.,Free University of Berlin | And 7 more authors.
PLoS ONE | Year: 2011

Background: The probiotic Escherichia coli strain Nissle 1917 (EcN) has been shown to interfere in a human in vitro model with the invasion of several bacterial pathogens into epithelial cells, but the underlying molecular mechanisms are not known. Methodology/Principal Findings: In this study, we investigated the inhibitory effects of EcN on Salmonella Typhimurium invasion of porcine intestinal epithelial cells, focusing on EcN effects on the various stages of Salmonella infection including intracellular and extracellular Salmonella growth rates, virulence gene regulation, and adhesion. We show that EcN affects the initial Salmonella invasion steps by modulating Salmonella virulence gene regulation and Salmonella SiiE-mediated adhesion, but not extra- and intracellular Salmonella growth. However, the inhibitory activity of EcN against Salmonella invasion always correlated with EcN adhesion capacities. EcN mutants defective in the expression of F1C fimbriae and flagellae were less adherent and less inhibitory toward Salmonella invasion. Another E. coli strain expressing F1C fimbriae was also adherent to IPEC-J2 cells, and was similarly inhibitory against Salmonella invasion like EcN. Conclusions: We propose that EcN affects Salmonella adhesion through secretory components. This mechanism appears to be common to many E. coli strains, with strong adherence being a prerequisite for an effective reduction of SiiE-mediated Salmonella adhesion. © 2011 Schierack et al.


Massberg S.,TU Munich | Grahl L.,Ludwig Maximilians University of Munich | Von Bruehl M.-L.,TU Munich | Manukyan D.,Ludwig Maximilians University of Munich | And 15 more authors.
Nature Medicine | Year: 2010

Blood neutrophils provide the first line of defense against pathogens but have also been implicated in thrombotic processes. This dual function of neutrophils could reflect an evolutionarily conserved association between blood coagulation and antimicrobial defense, although the molecular determinants and in vivo significance of this association remain unclear. Here we show that major microbicidal effectors of neutrophils, the serine proteases neutrophil elastase and cathepsin G, together with externalized nucleosomes, promote coagulation and intravascular thrombus growth in vivo. The serine proteases and extracellular nucleosomes enhance tissue factor-and factor XII-dependent coagulation in a process involving local proteolysis of the coagulation suppressor tissue factor pathway inhibitor. During systemic infection, activation of coagulation fosters compartmentalization of bacteria in liver microvessels and reduces bacterial invasion into tissue. In the absence of a pathogen challenge, neutrophil-derived serine proteases and nucleosomes can contribute to large-vessel thrombosis, the main trigger of myocardial infarction and stroke. The ability of coagulation to suppress pathogen dissemination indicates that microvessel thrombosis represents a physiological tool of host defense. © 2010 Nature America Inc. All rights reserved.

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