Microbe-Host Interactions: Structure and Role of Gram-Negative Bacterial Porins

Author(s): Stefania Galdiero, Annarita Falanga, Marco Cantisani, Rossella Tarallo, Maria Elena Della Pepa, Virginia D'Oriano, Massimiliano Galdiero

Journal Name: Current Protein & Peptide Science

Volume 13 , Issue 8 , 2012

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Gram negative bacteria have evolved many mechanisms of attaching to and invading host epithelial and immune cells. In particular, many outer membrane proteins (OMPs) are involved in this initial interaction between the pathogen and their host. The outer membrane (OM) of Gram-negative bacteria performs the crucial role of providing an extra layer of protection to the organism without compromising the exchange of material required for sustaining life. The OM, therefore, represents a sophisticated macromolecular assembly, whose complexity has yet to be fully elucidated. This review will summarize the structural information available for porins, a class of OMP, and highlight their role in bacterial pathogenesis and their potential as therapeutic targets.

The functional role of porins in microbe-host interactions during various bacterial infections has emerged only during the last few decades, and their interaction with a variety of host tissues for adhesion to and invasion of the cell and for evasion of host-defense mechanisms have placed bacterial porins at the forefront of research in bacterial pathogenesis. This review will discuss the role that porins play in activating immunological responses, in inducing signaling pathways and their influence on antibiotic resistance mechanisms that involve modifications of the properties of the OM lipid barrier.

Keywords: Porin, bacteria, immunobiology, signaling pathways, structure, Infectious diseases, Gram negative bacteria, toxic compounds, OMPs, BACTERIAL ENVELOPES

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Article Details

Year: 2012
Page: [843 - 854]
Pages: 12
DOI: 10.2174/1389203711213080012

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