This research was directed to define common protein and gene expression patterns in wound-colonizing bacteria, with special focus in the opportunistic bacterium Staphylococcus aureus. To this end, the studies approach was based on a chronic wound model that exists in epidermolysis bullosa. The analysis shows that S. aureus can stably coexist in a community as a result of different biochemical and metabolic mechanisms that allow it to adapt to a specific environment. S. aureus shows a cooperative character towards other pathogens that confer it the benefit to share resources. Interestingly, S. aureus seems to have taken advantage of the features displayed by its neighbours without the need of expressing (reduced genomic inventory) those features itself. In vitro co-culturing of S. aureus with Klebsiella oxytoca and Bacillus thuringiensis, not only decreased the expression of cytoplasmic proteins, but also the expression of genes related to virulence. Furthermore, proteins that were originally considered to be restricted to the cytoplasm were also identified extracellularly, which may be important for virulence enhancement and invasive disease. These observations were validated with the Galleria mellonella animal model experiments; where reduced mortality was registered upon co-infection with S. aureus and K. oxytoca. The helicopter view of wound-resident bacteria in vitro led this research into the exploration of the staphylococcal gene expression in situ. Indeed, the effects of the microbiome over S. aureus in the wound were observed and several genes that were found to be expressed in vitro were also expressed in situ.
|Kwalificatie||Doctor of Philosophy|
|Datum van toekenning||1-jul-2020|
|Plaats van publicatie||[Groningen]|
|Status||Published - 2020|