The importance of pneumococcal capsule in inate immunity and biofilm formation

Küng, Eliane (2014). The importance of pneumococcal capsule in inate immunity and biofilm formation (Unpublished). (Dissertation, Universität Bern, Graduate School for Cellular and Biomedical Sciences)

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Chapter 1 gives an overview about Streptococcus pneumoniae, its role as a human pathogen and its virulence factors. Additionally, biofilm development and its relevance in clinics are introduced, and the innate immune response to pneumococcus as well as bacterial-viral interactions in the upper respiratory tract are also discussed. Chapter 2 emphasizes the three main topics of this thesis: the role of capsule and pneumolysin in the immune response in the respiratory tract, biofilm formation of S. pneumoniae serotypes and commensal streptococci in vitro, and host innate immune responses to RSV and S. pneumoniae during in vitro co-infections. Aims and hypotheses are provided here. Chapter 3 is divided into two parts: First, the release of the pro-inflammatory cytokines CXCL8 and IL-6 from the human pharyngeal epithelial cell line Detroit 562 and from human bronchial epithelial cells (iHBEC) is described in response to S. pneumoniae. Capsule was shown to suppress the release of both cytokines in both cell lines tested, but release was much less from iHBEC cells. During intranasal colonization of mice, suppression of CXCL8 release by the capsule was also observed in vivo, but the effect was only measured in the absence of pneumolysin. Long term, stable nasopharyngeal carriage in a mouse model resulted in the dissemination of nonencapsulated pneumococci into the lungs, whereas encapsulated strains remained in the nasopharynx. The S. pneumoniae capsule thus plays a role in modulation of the pro-inflammatory immune response in the respiratory tract. Second, results on immunological cells and immune regulation in a long term, stable nasopharyngeal carriage mouse model are presented. Mice were infected with encapsulated or nonencapsulated pneumococcal strains, and after 1, 3, 8 and 15 days, were sacrificed to evaluate the numbers of CD45+ cells, neutrophils, macrophages, FoxP3+ regulatory T-cells and CD3+ T-cells in the nasal mucosa as well as the amount of secreted IL-10 in the nasopharynx. Nasopharyngeal colonization which is effectively silent resulted in the stimulation of FoxP3+ regulatory T-cells and IL-10 release associated with immune homeostasis, whereas lung infiltration was required to increase the number of neutrophils and macrophages resulting in a stronger innate immune response in the nasal mucosa. Chapter 4 contains results of mono- and co-stimulation using RSV and pneumococci or pneumococcal virulence factors on the human bronchial epithelial cell line BEAS-2B. An increase in CXCL8 and IL-6 levels was measured for mixed stimulations of RSV and pneumococcus when encapsulated bacteria were used. Increasing pneumolysin concentrations resulted in enhanced CXCL8 levels. Priming of bronchial epithelial cells with RSV opens the door for more severe pneumococcal infections. Chapter 5 is composed of two parts: The first part describes initial biofilm formation of serotypes 6B and 7F in a static model in vitro. Biofilms of both serotypes contained SCVs, but only serotype 6B increased in SCV formation between 16 and 65h of incubation. SCV stability was tested by passaging clones in complex medium, where SCV production is not associated with advantages in growth. Serotype 6B lost the SCV phenotype indicating a fast adaptation to a changing nutritional environment. Limitations of our in vitro model are discussed. The second part is about initial biofilm formation of mixed culture growth of S. pneumoniae with commensal streptococci. Competition dominates this process. S. oralis and pneumococcus compete for nutrients, whereas mixed species growth of S. mitis or S. pseudopneumoniae with S. pneumoniae is mainly influenced by other factors. In Chapter 6 the findings of chapters 3, 4 and 5 are discussed and an outlook for further studies is provided. Chapters 7, 8, 9, 10 and 11 contain the references, the acknowledgements, the curriculum vitae, the appendix and the declaration of originality.

Item Type:

Thesis (Dissertation)

Division/Institute:

04 Faculty of Medicine > Service Sector > Institute for Infectious Diseases

UniBE Contributor:

Küng, Eliane

Subjects:

500 Science > 570 Life sciences; biology
600 Technology > 610 Medicine & health

Language:

German

Submitter:

Ruth Bucheli

Date Deposited:

13 Oct 2014 16:45

Last Modified:

09 Dec 2014 03:18

URN:

urn:nbn:ch:bel-bes-1191

Additional Information:

e-Dissertation (edbe)

BORIS DOI:

10.7892/boris.54794

URI:

https://boris.unibe.ch/id/eprint/54794

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