Sanjeev K Sahni

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Human infections with arthropod-borne Rickettsia species remain a major global health issue, causing significant morbidity and mortality. Epidemic typhus due to Rickettsia prowazekii has an established reputation as the 'scourge of armies', and as a major determinant of significant 'historical turning points'. No suitable vaccines for human use are(More)
Caspases, a group of cysteine-activated aspartate-directed proteases, play an integral role in the execution of programmed cell death or apoptosis. In the cellular caspase cascade, the processing of native proenzymes into activated forms of downstream, effector caspases is dependent on the activation of initiator caspases-8 and -9. We describe a staining(More)
BACKGROUND Manipulation of host cell death is an important determinant of the outcome of an infection. Here, we investigate whether Rickettsia rickettsii-infected host endothelial cells resist the effects of staurosporine, a potent inducer of apoptosis, and we explore the mechanisms underlying the anti-apoptotic effect of infection. METHODS Human(More)
The possibility that bacteria may have evolved strategies to overcome host cell apoptosis was explored by using Rickettsia rickettsii, an obligate intracellular Gram-negative bacteria that is the etiologic agent of Rocky Mountain spotted fever. The vascular endothelial cell, the primary target cell during in vivo infection, exhibits no evidence of apoptosis(More)
Pathogenic Rickettsia species are Gram-negative, obligate intracellular bacteria responsible for the spotted fever and typhus groups of diseases around the world. It is now well established that a majority of sequelae associated with human rickettsioses are the outcome of the pathogen's affinity for endothelium lining the blood vessels, the consequences of(More)
Rickettsia species are obligate intracellular Gram-negative pathogenic bacteria and the etiologic agents of diseases such as Rocky Mountain spotted fever (RMSF), Mediterranean spotted fever, epidemic typhus, and murine typhus. Genome sequencing revealed that R. prowazekii has ~25 % non-coding DNA, the majority of which is thought to be either “junk DNA” or(More)
Emerging evidence implicates a critically important role for bacterial small RNAs (sRNAs) as post-transcriptional regulators of physiology, metabolism, stress/adaptive responses, and virulence, but the roles of sRNAs in pathogenic Rickettsia species remain poorly understood. Here, we report on the identification of both novel and well-known bacterial sRNAs(More)
Cellular oxidative stress in the endothelium of blood vessels leads to several pathophysiological sequelae, including vascular damage and dysfunction, inflammation and atherosclerosis. Heme oxygenase-1 (HO-1) provides protection against oxidative stress-induced cell death and plays a crucial role in the regulation of cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2) in endothelial(More)
Apoptotic host cell death is a critical determinant in the progression of microbial infections and outcome of resultant diseases. The potentially fatal human infection caused by Rickettsia rickettsii, the etiologic agent of Rocky Mountain spotted fever, involves the vascular endothelium of various organ systems of the host. Earlier studies have shown that(More)
Rickettsia rickettsii, a gram-negative and obligate intracellular bacterium, is the causative agent of Rocky Mountain spotted fever. In human infections, the primary target of R. rickettsii infection is vascular endothelium. Our laboratory has shown that activation of nuclear transcription factor-kappa B (NF-kappaB) during R. rickettsii infection of(More)