Scientific reports

Nitrosative stress defences of the enterohepatic pathogenic bacterium Helicobacter pullorum.

PMID 28855660


Helicobacter pullorum is an avian bacterium that causes gastroenteritis, intestinal bowel and hepatobiliary diseases in humans. Although H. pullorum has been shown to activate the mammalian innate immunity with release of nitric oxide (NO), the proteins that afford protection against NO and reactive nitrogen species (RNS) remain unknown. Here several protein candidates of H. pullorum, namely a truncated (TrHb) and a single domain haemoglobin (SdHb), and three peroxiredoxin-like proteins (Prx1, Prx2 and Prx3) were investigated. We report that the two haemoglobin genes are induced by RNS, and that SdHb confers resistance to nitrosative stress both in vitro and in macrophages. For peroxiredoxins, the prx2 and prx3 expression is enhanced by peroxynitrite and hydrogen peroxide, respectively. Mutation of prx1 does not alter the resistance to these stresses, while the single ∆prx2 and double ∆prx1∆prx2 mutants have decreased viability. To corroborate the physiological data, the biochemical analysis of the five recombinant enzymes was done, namely by stopped-flow spectrophotometry. It is shown that H. pullorum SdHb reacts with NO much more quickly than TrHb, and that the three Prxs react promptly with peroxynitrite, Prx3 displaying the highest reactivity. Altogether, the results unveil SdHb and Prx3 as major protective systems of H. pullorum against nitrosative stress.

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