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      Survey of extra-intestinal immune responses in asymptomatic long-term Campylobacter jejuni-infected mice

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          Abstract

          Campylobacter jejuni is among the most frequently reported bacterial pathogens causing diarrhea in humans worldwide. We recently reported a murine infection model mimicking key features of human campylobacteriosis. Six days following oral C. jejuni infection immediately after weaning, infant mice developed acute enterocolitis resolving within 2 weeks. Thereafter, C. jejuni could still be isolated from the intestines of asymptomatic mice at low levels accompanied by distinct immune responses, both at intestinal and extra-intestinal locations. We here show that, at day 103 post infection (p.i.), long-term C. jejuni-infected mice exhibited higher numbers of T lymphocytes in liver, lung, kindneys, and cardiac muscle as compared to uninfected controls. In addition, B lymphocytes were slightly higher, but macrophage numbers were significantly lower in liver and lung of C. jejuni-infected versus naive mice. As compared to uninfected control animals, proliferating cells were significantly lower in liver, lung, kidneys, cardiac muscle, and spleen at day 103 p.i., whereas more apoptotic cells were abundant in the spleen with predominance in the red pulp. This study underlines that post-infectious, immunological sequelae at extra-intestinal locations are of importance even in asymptomatic long-term C. jejuni carriers and need to be further studied in order to unravel the underlying molecular mechanisms.

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          Most cited references 15

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          Novel Murine Infection Models Provide Deep Insights into the “Ménage à Trois” of Campylobacter jejuni, Microbiota and Host Innate Immunity

          Background Although Campylobacter jejuni-infections have a high prevalence worldwide and represent a significant socioeconomic burden, it is still not well understood how C. jejuni causes intestinal inflammation. Detailed investigation of C. jejuni-mediated intestinal immunopathology is hampered by the lack of appropriate vertebrate models. In particular, mice display colonization resistance against this pathogen. Methodology/Principal Findings To overcome these limitations we developed a novel C. jejuni-infection model using gnotobiotic mice in which the intestinal flora was eradicated by antibiotic treatment. These animals could then be permanently associated with a complete human (hfa) or murine (mfa) microbiota. After peroral infection C. jejuni colonized the gastrointestinal tract of gnotobiotic and hfa mice for six weeks, whereas mfa mice cleared the pathogen within two days. Strikingly, stable C. jejuni colonization was accompanied by a pro-inflammatory immune response indicated by increased numbers of T- and B-lymphocytes, regulatory T-cells, neutrophils and apoptotic cells, as well as increased concentrations of TNF-α, IL-6, and MCP-1 in the colon mucosa of hfa mice. Analysis of MyD88−/−, TRIF−/−, TLR4−/−, and TLR9−/− mice revealed that TLR4- and TLR9-signaling was essential for immunopathology following C. jejuni-infection. Interestingly, C. jejuni-mutant strains deficient in formic acid metabolism and perception induced less intestinal immunopathology compared to the parental strain infection. In summary, the murine gut flora is essential for colonization resistance against C. jejuni and can be overcome by reconstitution of gnotobiotic mice with human flora. Detection of C. jejuni-LPS and -CpG-DNA by host TLR4 and TLR9, respectively, plays a key role in immunopathology. Finally, the host immune response is tightly coupled to bacterial formic acid metabolism and invasion fitness. Conclusion/Significance We conclude that gnotobiotic and “humanized” mice represent excellent novel C. jejuni-infection and -inflammation models and provide deep insights into the immunological and molecular interplays between C. jejuni, microbiota and innate immunity in human campylobacteriosis.
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            Intestinal Microbiota Shifts towards Elevated Commensal Escherichia coli Loads Abrogate Colonization Resistance against Campylobacter jejuni in Mice

            Background The zoonotic pathogen Campylobacter jejuni is a leading cause of bacterial foodborne enterocolitis in humans worldwide. The understanding of immunopathology underlying human campylobacteriosis is hampered by the fact that mice display strong colonization resistance against the pathogen due to their host specific gut microbiota composition. Methodology/Principal Findings Since the microbiota composition changes significantly during intestinal inflammation we dissected factors contributing to colonization resistance against C. jejuni in murine ileitis, colitis and in infant mice. In contrast to healthy animals C. jejuni could stably colonize mice suffering from intestinal inflammation. Strikingly, in mice with Toxoplasma gondii-induced acute ileitis, C. jejuni disseminated to mesenteric lymphnodes, spleen, liver, kidney, and blood. In infant mice C. jejuni infection induced enterocolitis. Mice suffering from intestinal inflammation and C. jejuni susceptible infant mice displayed characteristical microbiota shifts dominated by increased numbers of commensal Escherichia coli. To further dissect the pivotal role of those distinct microbiota shifts in abrogating colonization resistance, we investigated C. jejuni infection in healthy adult mice in which the microbiota was artificially modified by feeding live commensal E. coli. Strikingly, in animals harboring supra-physiological intestinal E. coli loads, colonization resistance was significantly diminished and C. jejuni infection induced enterocolitis mimicking key features of human campylobacteriosis. Conclusion/Significance Murine colonization resistance against C. jejuni is abrogated by changes in the microbiota composition towards elevated E. coli loads during intestinal inflammation as well as in infant mice. Intestinal inflammation and microbiota shifts thus represent potential risk factors for C. jejuni infection. Corresponding interplays between C. jejuni and microbiota might occur in human campylobacteriosis. Murine models introduced here mimick key features of human campylobacteriosis and allow for further analysis of immunological and molecular mechanisms of C. jejuni – host interactions.
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              Campylobacter colitis: histological immunohistochemical and ultrastructural findings.

              The colonic biopsy specimens of 22 patients with colitis and positive stool cultures for Campylobacter jejuni were studied in order to obtain histological and immunohistochemical criteria to differentiate Campylobacter colitis from chronic inflammatory bowel disease. In addition we tried to identify Campylobacter inclusions by means of immunohistochemistry and electron microscopy as evidence for invasion of the colonic mucosa. The results show that the majority of patients with Campylobacter colitis have the histological picture of acute infectious colitis with increased numbers of IgA and IgM containing plasma cells in the colonic mucosa in contrast with patients with active chronic inflammatory bowel disease who show increases of IgA and IgG (ulcerative colitis) or IgA-, IgM and IgG containing plasma cells (M Crohn) in their colonic biopsies. The results of immunohistochemical stainings with Campylobacter antiserum show invasion of Campylobacter in the colonic mucosa. These findings were confirmed ultrastructurally.
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                Author and article information

                Journal
                1886
                122234
                European Journal of Microbiology and Immunology
                EuJMI
                Akadémiai Kiadó, co-published with Springer Science+Business Media B.V., Formerly Kluwer Academic Publishers B.V.
                2062-509X
                2062-8633
                1 September 2013
                : 3
                : 3
                : 174-182
                Affiliations
                [ 1 ] Department of Microbiology and Hygiene, Charité, University Medicine Berlin, Centrum 5, Campus Benjamin Franklin, Hindenburgdamm 27, D-12203, Berlin, Germany
                [ 2 ] Department of Gastroenterology, Infectiology and Rheumatology / Research Center ImmunoSciences (RCIS), Charité, University Medicine Berlin, Berlin, Germany
                Author notes
                [* ] +49-30-8445-2194, +49-30-450-524-902, markus.heimesaat@ 123456charite.de
                Article
                4
                10.1556/EuJMI.3.2013.3.4
                3832099
                24265935
                Categories
                Original Article

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