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Many human pathogens produce phenotypic variants as a means to circumvent the host immune system and enhance survival and, as a potential consequence, exhibit increased virulence. For example, it has been known for almost 90 y that clinical isolates of the human bacterial pathogen group A streptococci (GAS) have extensive phenotypic heterogeneity linked to(More)
BACKGROUND The hyper-IgE syndrome (or Job's syndrome) is a rare disorder of immunity and connective tissue characterized by dermatitis, boils, cyst-forming pneumonias, elevated serum IgE levels, retained primary dentition, and bone abnormalities. Inheritance is autosomal dominant; sporadic cases are also found. METHODS We collected longitudinal clinical(More)
A community-associated methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (CA-MRSA) strain known as pulsed-field type USA300 (USA300) is epidemic in the United States. Previous comparative whole-genome sequencing studies demonstrated that there has been recent clonal emergence of a subset of USA300 isolates, which comprise the epidemic clone. Although the core(More)
Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) remains a major problem in hospitals, and it is now spreading in the community. A single toxin, Panton-Valentine leukocidin (PVL), has been linked by epidemiological studies to community-associated MRSA (CA-MRSA) disease. However, the role that PVL plays in the pathogenesis of CA-MRSA has not been tested(More)
Emerging and re-emerging infectious diseases, especially those caused by drug-resistant bacteria, are a major problem worldwide. Community-associated methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (CA-MRSA) appeared rapidly and unexpectedly in the United States, resulting in an epidemic caused primarily by isolates classified as USA300. The evolutionary and(More)
The skin commensal and opportunistic pathogen Staphylococcus epidermidis is the leading cause of nosocomial and biofilm-associated infections. Little is known about the mechanisms by which S. epidermidis protects itself against the innate human immune system during colonization and infection. We used scanning electron microscopy to demonstrate that the(More)
Many pathogenic bacteria produce extracellular DNase, but the benefit of this enzymatic activity is not understood. For example, all strains of the human bacterial pathogen group A Streptococcus (GAS) produce at least one extracellular DNase, and most strains make several distinct enzymes. Despite six decades of study, it is not known whether production of(More)
Human polymorphonuclear leukocytes (PMNs or neutrophils) are essential to the innate immune response against bacterial pathogens. Recent evidence suggests that PMN apoptosis facilitates resolution of inflammation during bacterial infection. Although progress has been made toward understanding apoptosis in neutrophils, very little is known about(More)
BACKGROUND Myocardial failure has a central role in the complex pathophysiology of septic shock and contributes to organ failure and death. During the sepsis-induced inflammatory process, specific factors are released that depress myocardial contractile function. We aimed to identify these mediators of myocardial depression in meningococcal septic shock. (More)
It is becoming increasingly apparent that Staphylococcus aureus are able to survive engulfment by macrophages, and that the intracellular environment of these host cells, which is essential to innate host defenses against invading microorganisms, may in fact provide a refuge for staphylococcal survival and dissemination. Based on this, we postulated that S.(More)