Resist or Persist

Science Signaling  15 Jul 2008:
Vol. 1, Issue 28, pp. ec257
DOI: 10.1126/scisignal.128ec257

Many of the key immune pathways initiated in response to infection begin with the activation of the transcription factor NF-κB. Thus, it would not be unreasonable to expect that at least some pathogens would have evolved the means by which to impede this pathway. Kravchenko et al. demonstrate that the opportunistic bacteria Pseudomonas aeruginosa produces a small signaling protein, C12, which impairs the turnover of proteins critical to the regulation of NF-κB activity. The resulting reduction in transcription of key immune response genes could have significant influence on persistent infection by this and other bacteria.

V. V. Kravchenko, G. F. Kaufmann, J. C. Mathison, D. A. Scott, A. Z. Katz, D. C. Grauer, M. Lehmann, M. M. Meijler, K. D. Janda, R. J. Ulevitch, Modulation of gene expression via disruption of NF-κB signaling by a bacterial small molecule. Science 321, 259-263 (2008). [Abstract] [Full Text]