Cell biology and molecular ecology of Francisella tularensis

Marina Santic, Souhaila M. Al Khodor, Yousef Abu Kwaik

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

54 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Francisella tularensis is a highly infectious intracellular bacterium that causes the fulminating disease tularemia, which can be transmitted between mammals by arthorpod vectors. Genomic studies have shown that the F. tularensis has been undergoing genomic decay with the most virulent strains having the lowest number of functional genes. Entry of F. tularensis into macrophages is mediated by looping phagocytosis and is associated with signalling through Syk tyrosine kinase. Within macrophages and arthropod-derived cells, the Francisella-containing phagosome matures transiently into an acidified late endosome-like phagosome with limited fusion to lysosomes followed by rapid bacterial escape into the cytosol within 30-60 min, and bacterial proliferation within the cytosol. The Francisella pathogenicity island, which potentially encodes a putative type VI secretion system, is essential for phagosome biogenesis and bacterial escape into the cytosol within macrophages and arthropod-derived cells. Initial sensing of F. tularensis in the cytosol triggers IRF-3-dependent IFN-β secretion, type I IFNR-dependent signalling, activation of the inflammasome mediated by caspase-1, and a pro-inflammatory response, which is suppressed by triggering of SHIP. The past few years have witnessed a quantum leap in our understanding of various aspects of this organism and this review will discuss these remarkable advances.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)129-139
Number of pages11
JournalCellular Microbiology
Volume12
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2010
Externally publishedYes

Fingerprint

Francisella tularensis
Ecology
Cytosol
Phagosomes
Cell Biology
Francisella
Arthropods
Macrophages
Inflammasomes
Tularemia
Genomic Islands
Caspase 1
Endosomes
Lysosomes
Phagocytosis
Protein-Tyrosine Kinases
Mammals
Bacteria
Genes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Microbiology
  • Immunology
  • Virology

Cite this

Cell biology and molecular ecology of Francisella tularensis. / Santic, Marina; Al Khodor, Souhaila M.; Abu Kwaik, Yousef.

In: Cellular Microbiology, Vol. 12, No. 2, 2010, p. 129-139.

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

Santic, Marina ; Al Khodor, Souhaila M. ; Abu Kwaik, Yousef. / Cell biology and molecular ecology of Francisella tularensis. In: Cellular Microbiology. 2010 ; Vol. 12, No. 2. pp. 129-139.
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