Special Issue "Gram Positive Toxins Producing Organisms 2.0"

A special issue of Microorganisms (ISSN 2076-2607). This special issue belongs to the section "Molecular Microbiology and Immunology".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 15 December 2023 | Viewed by 2571

Special Issue Editors

Division of Microbiology, Office of Regulatory Science, CFSAN/US Food and Drug Administration, College Park, MD 20740, USA
Interests: select agent research; toxins; bacteria; gram positive
IHRC, Inc., 2 Ravinia Drive, Suite 1200, Atlanta, GA 30346, USA
Interests: all aspect of select agent research; gram positive bacterial and other toxins

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

This Special Issue is the continuation of our previous Special Issue: "Gram Positive Toxins Producing Organisms".

Many bacteria produce toxins that are essential in the medical field. Vaccines have been developed for some toxin-mediated diseases (e.g., tetanus, diphtheria) and continue to play a significant role in the prevention of disease. Over the past few decades, great strides have been made in our understanding of the structure and function of bacterial toxins and their role in diseases. These advances reflect the productive interactions of disciplines, such as protein chemistry and crystallography, molecular genetics, molecular biology, genomics, immunology, neurobiology, pharmacology, and biophysics. Remarkable progress has been made in the elucidation of the molecular mechanisms of a wide range of toxins with increasing numbers found to have enzymatic activities, including those that ADP-ribosylate (e.g., diphtheria toxin) and glycosylate novel targets, as well as Zn-proteinases with exquisite specificities (e.g., botulinum A neurotoxin and SNAP-25).    The host immune system is not only the primary defense against colonization and sometimes invasion by toxigenic bacteria, but it also constitutes a major target for bacterial toxins that can act either directly via cytotoxicity to immune effector cells, or indirectly via the deregulation of cytokine production.

Toxin genes and other virulence determinants are frequently encoded by mobile genetic elements, which are located on pathogenicity islands and/or on mobilizable genetic elements, such as plasmids, transposons, and bacteriophages. These genetic elements have the capacity to be spread by horizontal gene transfer, contributing to the rapid evolution of bacterial pathogens as the rearrangement, excision and acquisition of large genomic regions creates new pathogenic variants. The occurrence of toxin-encoding genes on various interdepending genetic elements, their ability to delete from and integrate into chromosomal DNA and the existence of toxin families among a wide variety of bacterial species demonstrate that toxigenic pathogen evolution is connected to the transfer of foreign DNA harboring toxin determinants.

The aim of this Special Issue is to provide a collection of articles that highlights research on bacterial toxins. The editors chose to focus this Special Issue on Gram-positive bacterial toxins. We welcome submissions reflecting all aspects of toxin research from applied (novel diagnostics, countermeasures, vaccines) to more basic research areas related to the biology of the toxin, genomics, and pathogenesis.  Gram-positive toxins include, but are not limited to, tetanus toxin, botulinum toxins, staphylococcal toxins, diphtheria toxin, streptococcal toxins, Listeria toxin, anthrax toxins, Bacillus cereus toxins, pneumolysin, enterococcal toxins, and other clostridial toxins (e.g., perfringolysin O). Each of these toxins has a unique story to tell but needs a storyteller. We hope you will be able to contribute to this Special Issue on Gram-positive toxins. 

Dr. Shashi Sharma
Dr. Stephen A. Morse
Dr. Sabine Pellett
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All submissions that pass pre-check are peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Microorganisms is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2700 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Published Papers (2 papers)

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Special Issue: Gram-Positive Bacterial Toxins
Microorganisms 2023, 11(8), 2054; https://doi.org/10.3390/microorganisms11082054 - 10 Aug 2023
Viewed by 484
The Gram stain classifies most bacteria into one of two groups, Gram-negative or Gram-positive, based on the composition of their cell walls [...] Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Gram Positive Toxins Producing Organisms 2.0)


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Regulation of Staphylococcal Enterotoxin-Induced Inflammation in Spleen Cells from Diabetic Mice by Polyphenols
Microorganisms 2023, 11(4), 1039; https://doi.org/10.3390/microorganisms11041039 - 15 Apr 2023
Viewed by 732
Patients with diabetes are known to be more susceptible to infections following the establishment of Staphylococcus aureus in their nasal passages and on their skin. The present study evaluated the effects of staphylococcal enterotoxin A (SEA) on the immune responses of spleen cells [...] Read more.
Patients with diabetes are known to be more susceptible to infections following the establishment of Staphylococcus aureus in their nasal passages and on their skin. The present study evaluated the effects of staphylococcal enterotoxin A (SEA) on the immune responses of spleen cells derived from diabetic mice, and examined the effects of polyphenols, catechins, and nobiletin on inflammation-related gene expression associated with the immune response. (−)-Epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG), possessing hydroxyl groups, interacted with SEA, whereas nobiletin, possessing methyl groups, did not interact with SEA. The exposure of spleen cells derived from diabetic mice to SEA enhanced the expression of interferon gamma, suppressor of cytokine signaling 1, signal transducer and activator of transcription 3, interferon-induced transmembrane protein 3, Janus kinase 2, and interferon regulatory factor 3, suggesting that SEA sensitivity is variable in the development of diabetes. Both EGCG and nobiletin changed the expression of genes related to SEA-induced inflammation in spleen cells, suggesting that they inhibit inflammation through different mechanisms. These results may lead to a better understanding of the SEA-induced inflammatory response during diabetogenesis, and the establishment of methods to control these effects with polyphenols. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Gram Positive Toxins Producing Organisms 2.0)
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