Staff Publications

Staff Publications

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    'Staff publications' is the digital repository of Wageningen University & Research

    'Staff publications' contains references to publications authored by Wageningen University staff from 1976 onward.

    Publications authored by the staff of the Research Institutes are available from 1995 onwards.

    Full text documents are added when available. The database is updated daily and currently holds about 240,000 items, of which 72,000 in open access.

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Record number 561794
Title Complement active human and porcine serum induces natural competence for genetic transformation in the emerging zoonotic pathogen Streptococcus suis
Author(s) Ferrando, Laura; Gussak, Alex; Mentink, Saskia; Baarlen, Peter van; Wells, Jerry
Source Wageningen University & Research
Department(s) WIAS
Host-Microbe Interactomics
Publication type Dataset
Publication year 2020
Keyword(s) bacterial competence - genetic manipulation - infectious disease - transformation - zoonotic agent
Abstract The acquisition of novel genetic traits by natural competence is a strategy used by bacteria in microbe-rich environments including animal or human hosts where microbial competition, antibiotics and host immune defences threaten their survival. We show here that several virulent strains of Streptococcus suis, an important porcine pathogen and zoonotic agent, become naturally competent for genetic transformation with plasmid or genomic DNA when cultured in active porcine and human serum, but not when it is pre-heated for 30 minutes at 56øC to inactivate complement. Competence is also not induced in active fetal bovine serum, which contains less complement factors and immunoglobulins than adult serum. Late competence genes, encoding the uptake machinery for environmental DNA, were highly upregulated in active serum. Competence development was independent of the early competence regulatory switch suggesting presence of an alternative stress-induced pathway for regulation of the transformasome, a type 4-like pilus DNA binding and transport apparatus.
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