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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)
 
 
 

Activation of the contact-phase system on bacterial surfaces--a clue to serious complications in infectious diseases.

Fever, hypotension and bleeding disorders are common symptoms of sepsis and septic shock. The activation of the contact-phase system is thought to contribute to the development of these severe disease states by triggering proinflammatory and procoagulatory cascades; however, the underlying molecular mechanisms are obscure. Here we report that the components of the contact-phase system are assembled on the surface of Escherichia coli and Salmonella through their specific interactions with fibrous bacterial surface proteins, curli and fimbriae. As a consequence, the proinflammatory pathway is activated through the release of bradykinin, a potent inducer of fever, pain and hypotension. Absorption of contact-phase proteins and fibrinogen by bacterial surface proteins depletes relevant coagulation factors and causes a hypocoagulatory state. Thus, the complex interplay of microbe surface proteins and host contact-phase factors may contribute to the symptoms of sepsis and septic shock.[1]

References

  1. Activation of the contact-phase system on bacterial surfaces--a clue to serious complications in infectious diseases. Herwald, H., Mörgelin, M., Olsén, A., Rhen, M., Dahlbäck, B., Müller-Esterl, W., Björck, L. Nat. Med. (1998) [Pubmed]
 
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