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Fabio Carvalho , Linda C Carrijo-Carvalho , Ana Marisa Chudzinski-Tavassi, Annette Foronda, Denise de Freitas . Low-molecular weight proteins as potential virulence factors of Acanthamoeba pathogens in corneal infection.

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Supported by grant from Brazilian Scientific Foundations: FAPESP (08/53969-0), CAPES, CNPq.

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Fabio Carvalho, Linda C Carrijo-Carvalho, Ana Marisa Chudzinski-Tavassi, Annette Foronda, Denise de Freitas

Low-molecular weight proteins as potential virulence factors of Acanthamoeba pathogensin corneal infection

Supported by grant from Brazilian Scientific Foundations: FAPESP (08/53969-0), CAPES, CNPq.


Corneal infections due to free-living amoebae have potentially devastating consequences. If not successfully treated, it can progress into the eye, causing corneal ulcer, loss of visual acuity and eventually blindness.

BACKGROUND


Proteases represent a class of enzymes which are related with pathogenicity and cytolysis of Acanthamoeba species and genotypes.

BACKGROUND


To evaluate the expression of extracellular proteins by Acanthamoeba trophozoites as predictive virulence factors in the corneal infection by the protozoa.

PURPOSE


  • The research was conducted in accordance with the tenets of the Declaration of Helsinki

  • Corneal scrapings

    • 10 patients

    • Contact-lens wearers

  • Acanthamoeba keratitis isolates (n=10)

METHODS


METHODS


KDa

109

95

46

36

RESULTS

Lane 1:

  • Negative control

    Lane 2:

  • ATCC 30011 avirulent strain

    Lanes 3 and 6:

  • Single pattern

    Lane 4:

  • High diversity


KDa

141

117

96

76

55

36

RESULTS

Lane 8:

  • Single pattern

    Lanes 11 and 12:

  • High diversity


  • Collagenases

  • AK: role in virulence.

Low molecular weight protein


  • Heterogeneous extracellular collagenases are produced by different Acanthamoeba isolates;

  • Avirulent Acanthamoeba strain could not produce collagenolytic enzymes;

CONCLUSIONS


Collagenases should be suggested as a virulence marker in the differentiation of Acanthamoeba species and genotypes.

CONCLUSIONS


  • The genotyping and phylogenetic inferences of clinical isolates are currently under investigation;

  • Collagenolytic enzymes are under isolation by chromatographic techniques.

PERSPECTIVES


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