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Tir phosphorylation and Nck/N-WASP recruitment by enteropathogenic and enterohaemorrhagic Escherichia coli during ex vivo colonization of human intestinal mucosa is different to cell culture models

Lookup NU author(s): Professor Brendan KennyORCiD


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Tir, the translocated intimin receptor of enteropathogenic and enterohaemorrhagic Escherichia coli (EPEC and EHEC) and Citrobacter rodentium, is translocated into the host cell by a filamentous type III secretion system. Epithelial cell culture has demonstrated that Tir tyrosine phosphorylation is necessary for attaching effacing (A/E) lesion formation by EPEC and C. rodentium, but is not required by EHEC O157:H7. Recent in vivo work on C. rodentium has reported that Tir translocation, but not its phosphorylation, is necessary for colonization of the mouse colon. In this study we investigated the involvement of Tir and its tyrosine phosphorylation in EPEC and EHEC human intestinal colonization, N-WASP accumulation and F-actin recruitment using in vitro organ culture (IVOC). We showed that both EPEC and EHEC Tir are translocated into human intestinal epithelium during IVOC and that Tir is necessary for ex vivo intestinal colonization by both EPEC and EHEC. EPEC, but not EHEC, Tir is tyrosine phosphorylated but Tir phosphorylation-deficient mutants still colonize intestinal explants. While EPEC Tir recruits the host adaptor protein Nck to initiate N-WASP-Arp2/3-mediated actin polymerization, Tir derivatives deficient in tyrosine phosphorylation recruit N-WASP independently of Nck indicating the presence of a tyrosine phosphorylation-independent mechanism of A/E lesion formation and actin recruitment ex vivo by EPEC in man.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Schuller S, Chong YW, Lewin J, Kenny B, Frankel G, Phillips AD

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Cellular Microbiology

Year: 2007

Volume: 9

Issue: 5

Pages: 1352-1364

ISSN (print): 1462-5814

ISSN (electronic): 1462-5822

Publisher: Wiley-Blackwell Publishing Ltd.


DOI: 10.1111/j.1462-5822.2006.00879.x


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Funder referenceFunder name
071006/Z/03/ZWellcome Trust