aureus, especially during infectious diseases It is then likely

aureus, especially during infectious diseases. It is then likely that S. aureus interacts with other bacterial genus than Pseudomonas during infection of the airways of CF patients. As an example, the CF pathogen Burkholderia cepacia also produces N-acylhomoserine lactones [57] and some Burkholderia species are able to synthesize HAQ analogues [58]. Nevertheless, the observation that P. aeruginosa favors the emergence

of SCVs and biofilm production by S. aureus is likely to have a significant clinical impact. The clinical consequences may actually surpass the previously anticipated formation of aminoglycoside-resistant SCVs by Hoffman et al. [2]. Persistence of bacteria in chronic infections has been associated with biofilm Crizotinib order production [1, 59] and biofilms are known to confer protection from host defenses and antibiotic treatments Wnt inhibitor at large [34, 60]. In the cystic fibrosis context, where obstructive infections worsen the health prognosis of patients, the clinical significance of biofilm production by normal S. aureus and SCV strains will need to be further investigated. Conclusions This study strongly supports the hypothesis that P. aeruginosa influences the pathogenicity of S. aureus by producing HQNO, which favors the acquisition of the SCV phenotype through the activation of the stress- and colonization-related S. aureus alternative sigma factor B. Although several P. aeruginosa

exoproducts may potentially influence S. aureus, our observations with pure HQNO were confirmed and supported by experiments using whole supernatants from two P. aeruginosa strains as well as mutants unable to produce HQNO. Considering that biofilms Erastin clinical trial and SCVs are both suspected to play a role in chronic infections of CF airways, the observation that P. aeruginosa increases the emergence of SCVs and biofilm formation by S. aureus may influence the patient health prognosis. New therapeutic strategies should

aim at preventing interspecies interactions and the development of specific phenotypes such as biofilm-producing SCVs in order to reduce the likelihood of chronic infections. Methods Bacterial strains and growth conditions The relevant characteristics of the strains used in this study are shown in Table 1. Staphylococcus aureus ATCC 29213, Newman and Newbould were used as representatives of prototypical control strains. NewbouldΔsigB and NewbouldhemB, in which the genes sigB or hemB had been disrupted by the ermA cassette [15, 17], were used to evaluate the importance of SigB in a prototypical background and to generate a stable SCV, respectively. CF03-L/CF03-S, CF07-L/CF07-S and CF1A-L/CF1D-S are related pairs of strains co-isolated from CF patients, which respectively have a normal and a SCV phenotype. The genetic relatedness of each strain among the pairs was confirmed by the analysis of multiple loci with a variable number of tandem repeats (see below). Except where otherwise stated, S.

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