Chapter 39 : Extracellular Enzymes

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produces a large number of extracellular enzymes, many of which are regarded as important virulence factors. Some extracellular enzymes contribute to the virulence of staphylococci by attacking molecules involved in host defenses against infection. Searches in the genome sequences of several strains identified 22 genes coding for extracellular enzymes. Coagulase production is the principal criterion used in the clinical microbiology laboratory for the identification of . Several reports have indicated that site-specific inactivation of the coagulase gene does not impair virulence in experimental endocarditis, subcutaneous, or mammary infections of mice. The streptokinase-plasmin complex, on the other hand, is insensitive to inhibition by α-antiplasmin. Staphylokinase (Sak) also has a higher affinity for plasmin(ogen) bound to fibrin than for free plasmin(ogen). Most lipases are also active against acyl p-nitrophenylesters, Tweens (polyoxyethylenesorbitan), and sometimes phospholipids. A role in virulence has also been suggested, based on the observation that staphylococcal lipase impairs granulocyte function. Staphylococcal abscesses contain long-chain free fatty acids and other neutral lipids that are bacteriocidal to . Fatty acid-modifying enzyme (FAME), which is found in culture supernatants of about 80% of strains, can inactivate these bacteriocidal lipids by catalyzing the esterification of these lipids to alcohols, preferably cholesterol. Hyaluronic acid is a ubiquitous component of the extracellular matrix of vertebrates. Extracellular enzymes that could hydrolyze hyaluronic acid were therefore among the first enzymes to be implicated in bacterial pathogenesis.

Citation: Arvidson S. 2006. Extracellular Enzymes, p 478-485. In Fischetti V, Novick R, Ferretti J, Portnoy D, Rood J (ed), Gram-Positive Pathogens, Second Edition. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555816513.ch39

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Restriction Fragment Length Polymorphism
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Cascade of maturation of the extracellular proteases of . Question marks represent unidentified proteases.

Citation: Arvidson S. 2006. Extracellular Enzymes, p 478-485. In Fischetti V, Novick R, Ferretti J, Portnoy D, Rood J (ed), Gram-Positive Pathogens, Second Edition. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555816513.ch39
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Generic image for table

Extracellular enzymes and enzyme activators from

SA numbers are open reading frame numbers in S. strain N315.

Citation: Arvidson S. 2006. Extracellular Enzymes, p 478-485. In Fischetti V, Novick R, Ferretti J, Portnoy D, Rood J (ed), Gram-Positive Pathogens, Second Edition. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555816513.ch39

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