Chlamydia deficient in plasmid-encoded pgp3 is prevented from spreading to large intestine

Zhi Huo, Conghui He, Ying Xu, Tianjun Jia, Jie Wang, Guangming Zhong

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

The cryptic plasmid pCM is critical for chlamydial colonization in the gastrointestinal tract. Nevertheless, orally inoculated plasmid-free Chlamydia sp. was still able to colonize the gut. Surprisingly, orally inoculated Chlamydia sp. deficient in only plasmid-encoded pGP3 was no longer able to colonize the gut. A comparison of live organism recoveries from individual gastrointestinal tissues revealed that pGP3-deficient Chlamydia sp. survived significantly better than plasmid-free Chlamydia sp. in small intestinal tissues. However, the small intestinal pGP3-deficient Chlamydia sp. failed to reach the large intestine, explaining the lack of live pGP3-deficient Chlamydia sp. in rectal swabs following an oral inoculation. Interestingly, pGP3-deficient Chlamydia sp. was able to colonize the colon following an intracolon inoculation, suggesting that pGP3-deficient Chlamydia sp. might be prevented from spreading from the small intestine to the large intestine. This hypothesis is supported by the finding that following an intrajejunal inoculation that bypasses the gastric barrier, pGP3-deficient Chlamydia sp. still failed to reach the large intestine, although similarly inoculated plasmid-free Chlamydia sp. was able to do so. Interestingly, when both types of organisms were intrajejunally coinoculated into the same mouse small intestine, plasmid-free Chlamydia sp. was no longer able to spread to the large intestine, suggesting that pGP3-deficient Chlamydia sp. might be able to activate an intestinal resistance for regulating Chlamydia sp. spreading. Thus, the current study has not only provided evidence for reconciling a previously identified conflicting phenotype but also revealed a potential intestinal resistance to chlamydial spreading. Efforts are under way to further define the mechanism of the putative intestinal resistance.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere00120
JournalInfection and immunity
Volume88
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 1 2020

Keywords

  • Chlamydia
  • Gastrointestinal spreading
  • Pgp3
  • Plasmid function

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Parasitology
  • Microbiology
  • Immunology
  • Infectious Diseases

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