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Streptococcus pyogenes is a gram-positive human pathogen that causes a wide spectrum of disease, placing a significant burden on public health. Bacterial surface-associated proteins play crucial roles in host-pathogen interactions and pathogenesis and are important targets for the immune system. The identification of these proteins for vaccine development(More)
The extracellular cysteine protease from Streptococcus pyogenes is a virulence factor that plays a significant role in host-pathogen interaction. Streptococcal protease is expressed as an inactive 40-kDa precursor that is autocatalytically converted into a 28-kDa mature (active) enzyme. Replacement of the single cysteine residue involved in formation of the(More)
Streptococcal pyrogenic exotoxins (SPEs) are superantigens that have been implicated in causing streptococcal toxic shock syndrome (STSS). Most notably, SPE serotype A is made by nearly all M-protein serotype 1 and 3 streptococci, the M types most associated with the illness (these strains contain one or more other SPEs, and those proteins are likely also(More)
Streptococcal pyrogenic exotoxin C (SPE C) is a superantigen produced by many strains of Streptococcus pyogenes that (along with streptococcal pyrogenic exotoxin A) is highly associated with streptococcal toxic shock syndrome (STSS) and other invasive streptococcal diseases. Based on the three-dimensional structure of SPE C, solvent-exposed residues(More)
Clumping factor B (ClfB) from Staphylococcus aureus is a bifunctional protein that binds to human cytokeratin 10 (K10) and fibrinogen (Fg). ClfB has been implicated in S. aureus colonization of nasal epithelium and is therefore a key virulence factor. People colonized with S. aureus are at an increased risk for invasive staphylococcal disease. In this(More)
Group B streptococci (GBS) are among the most common causes of life-threatening neonatal infections. Vaccine development since the late 1970s has focused on the capsular polysaccharides, but a safe, effective product is still not available. Our quest for a vaccine turned to the streptococcal C5a peptidase (SCPB). This surface protein is antigenically(More)
Group A streptococci (S. pyogenes) are responsible for pharyngitis, impetigo and several more serious diseases. Emergence of toxic shock, and necrotizing fasciitis, associated with this pathogen over the past 10 years, has generated interest in development of a vaccine, which would prevent infections and potential serious complications. The highly conserved(More)
Direct measurements of the structure and function of the COOH-terminal portion of the A alpha chain (residues 220-610) of human fibrinogen have been hampered by the difficulty of isolating intact fragments derived from this protease-sensitive region. Here, we overcame this problem by expressing two fragments, alpha C45K (A alpha 221-610) and a truncated(More)
There is a clear unmet medical need for a vaccine that would prevent infections from Staphylococcus aureus (S. aureus). To validate antigens as potential vaccine targets it has to be demonstrated that the antigens are expressed in vivo. Using murine bacteremia and wound infection models, we demonstrate that the expression of clumping factor A (ClfA) and(More)
Fibronectin binds specifically to fibrin and is covalently cross-linked to the fibrin alpha chain by activated factor XIII (XIIIa). This reaction is important for wound healing. Here we investigate XIIIa-catalyzed cross-linking of fibronectin and some of its fragments to a recombinant fragment representing the COOH-terminal 30 kDa of the fibrin alpha chain(More)