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Biology 2013, 2(3), 918-935; doi:10.3390/biology2030918

Bacterial Adhesion of Streptococcus suis to Host Cells and Its Inhibition by Carbohydrate Ligands

Department of Medical Biochemistry and Genetics, University of Turku, Kiinamyllynkatu 10, Turku FI-20520, Finland
Department of Medicinal Chemistry and Chemical Biology, Utrecht Institute for Pharmaceutical Sciences, Utrecht University, P.O. Box 80082, Utrecht 3508 TB, The Netherlands
Centre for Analysis and Synthesis, Department of Chemistry, Lund University, POB 124, Lund SE-22100, Sweden
Department of Biosciences, Division of Biochemistry and Biotechnology, University of Helsinki, P.O.B. 56, Helsinki FI-00014, Finland
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 2 May 2013 / Revised: 22 May 2013 / Accepted: 22 May 2013 / Published: 1 July 2013
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Bacterial Adhesion)
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Streptococcus suis is a Gram-positive bacterium, which causes sepsis and meningitis in pigs and humans. This review examines the role of known S. suis virulence factors in adhesion and S. suis carbohydrate-based adhesion mechanisms, as well as the inhibition of S. suis adhesion by anti-adhesion compounds in in vitro assays. Carbohydrate-binding specificities of S. suis have been identified, and these studies have shown that many strains recognize Galα1-4Gal-containing oligosaccharides present in host glycolipids. In the era of increasing antibiotic resistance, new means to treat infections are needed. Since microbial adhesion to carbohydrates is important to establish disease, compounds blocking adhesion could be an alternative to antibiotics. The use of oligosaccharides as drugs is generally hampered by their relatively low affinity (micromolar) to compete with multivalent binding to host receptors. However, screening of a library of chemically modified Galα1-4Gal derivatives has identified compounds that inhibit S. suis adhesion in nanomolar range. Also, design of multivalent Galα1-4Gal-containing dendrimers has resulted in a significant increase of the inhibitory potency of the disaccharide. The S. suis adhesin binding to Galα1-4Gal-oligosaccharides, Streptococcal adhesin P (SadP), was recently identified. It has a Galα1-4Gal-binding N-terminal domain and a C-terminal LPNTG-motif for cell wall anchoring. The carbohydrate-binding domain has no homology to E. coli P fimbrial adhesin, which suggests that these Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacterial adhesins recognizing the same receptor have evolved by convergent evolution. SadP adhesin may represent a promising target for the design of anti-adhesion ligands for the prevention and treatment of S. suis infections.
Keywords: bacterial adhesion; galabiose; virulence; Streptococcus suis, carbohydrate; adhesin; Gb3; galactose bacterial adhesion; galabiose; virulence; Streptococcus suis, carbohydrate; adhesin; Gb3; galactose

This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY 3.0).

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Kouki, A.; Pieters, R.J.; Nilsson, U.J.; Loimaranta, V.; Finne, J.; Haataja, S. Bacterial Adhesion of Streptococcus suis to Host Cells and Its Inhibition by Carbohydrate Ligands. Biology 2013, 2, 918-935.

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