Defense Date

7-27-2005

Graduation Date

Summer 2005

Availability

Immediate Access

Submission Type

thesis

Degree Name

MS

Department

Biological Sciences

School

Bayer School of Natural and Environmental Sciences

Committee Chair

Peter A. Castric

Committee Member

Jana Patton-Vogt

Committee Member

Kyle W. Selcer

Keywords

Glycosylation, Gram-negative Bacteria, Microbial Physiology, Pathogenesis

Abstract

The pili of P. aeruginosa 1244 are involved in a post-translational modification in which an acidic carbohydrate moiety structurally similar to the lipopolysaccahride (LPS) O-antigen is covalently attached to the pilin protein. It has been shown that this associated glycan is evenly distributed over the entire surface of the pilus. Because of its prime location along the pilus, experiments were conducted to determine if the pilin glycan contributed to the virulence of P. aeruginosa. Initial studies involved the assessment of LD50 values to demonstrate that acquisition of the exoU gene increased the virulence of PA1244. Interestingly, the LD50 studies suggested a role for the pilin glycan in PA1244 virulence. As a more sensitive determination of virulence, a competition assay utilizing a murine model of acute pneumonia demonstrated increased virulence associated with the glycan. Furthermore, employment of a nonopsonic phagocytosis assay has indicated inhibition of phagocytosis correlated with the pilin glycan.

Format

PDF

Language

English

Share

COinS