A random six-phase switch regulates pneumococcal virulence via global epigenetic changes

  title={A random six-phase switch regulates pneumococcal virulence via global epigenetic changes},
  author={Ana Sousa Manso and Melissa H. C. Chai and John M. Atack and Leonardo Furi and Megan De Ste Croix and Richard D Haigh and Claudia Trappetti and Abiodun D Ogunniyi and Lucy K. Shewell and Matthew Boitano and Tyson A Clark and Jonas Korlach and Matthew James Blades and Evgeny Mirkes and Alexander N. Gorban and James C Paton and Michael P Jennings and Marco R Oggioni},
  booktitle={Nature communications},
Streptococcus pneumoniae (the pneumococcus) is the world's foremost bacterial pathogen in both morbidity and mortality. Switching between phenotypic forms (or 'phases') that favour asymptomatic carriage or invasive disease was first reported in 1933. Here, we show that the underlying mechanism for such phase variation consists of genetic rearrangements in a Type I restriction-modification system (SpnD39III). The rearrangements generate six alternative specificities with distinct methylation… CONTINUE READING
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