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Cell Communication and Signaling

, 9:26

Interaction of Helicobacter pylori with its host cell


VacA, the vacuolating cytotoxin A of Helicobacter pylori, induces apoptosis in epithelial cells of the gastic mucosa and in leukocytes. VacA is released by the bacteria as a protein of 88 kDa. At the outer surface of host cells, it binds to the sphingomyelin of lipid rafts. At least partially, binding to the cells is facilitated by different receptor proteins. VacA is internalized by a clathrin-independent mechanism and initially accumulates in GPI-anchored proteins-enriched early endosomal compartments. Together with early endosomes, VacA is distributed inside the cells. Most of the VacA is eventually contained in the membranes of vacuoles. VacA assembles in hexameric oligomers forming an anion channel of low conductivity with a preference for chloride ions. In parallel, a significant fraction of VacA can be transferred from endosomes to mitochondria in a process involving direct endosome-mitochondria juxtaposition. Inside the mitochondria, VacA accumulates in the mitochondrial inner membrane, probably forming similar chloride channels as observed in the vacuoles. Import into mitochondria is mediated by the hydrophobic N-terminus of VacA. Apoptosis is triggered by loss of the mitochondrial membrane potential, recruitment of Bax and Bak, and release of cytochrome c.

KeywordsHelicobacter pylori vacuolating cytotoxin A apoptosis lipid rafts endosomes vacuoles mitochondrial targeting mitochondrial inner membrane ion channel cytochrome c Electronic supplementary materialThe online version of this article doi:10.1186-1478-811X-9-26 contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.

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Author: Joachim Rassow

Source: https://link.springer.com/

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