Corporate Banner
Satellite Banner
Technology
Networks
Scientific Communities
 
Become a Member | Sign in
Home>News>This Article
  News
Return

Chlamydia Protein has an Odd Structure

Published: Thursday, June 13, 2013
Last Updated: Thursday, June 13, 2013
Bookmark and Share
Research could lead to new ways to combat this sexually transmitted disease.

A protein secreted by the chlamydia bug has a very unusual structure, according to scientists in the School of Medicine at The University of Texas Health Science Center San Antonio. The discovery of the protein's shape could lead to novel strategies for diagnosing and treating chlamydia, a sexually transmitted disease that infects an estimated 2.8 million people in the U.S. each year.

The protein, Pgp3, is secreted by Chlamydia trachomatis, the bacterium that causes chlamydia. Pgp3's shape is very distinguishable — sort of like an Eiffel Tower of proteins. "From a structural standpoint, the protein is very odd indeed," said X-ray crystallographer P. John Hart, Ph.D., the Ewing Halsell President's Council Distinguished Chair in the Department of Biochemistry at the San Antonio medical school. "This long and slender molecule contains a fusion of structural motifs that resemble those typically found in viral and not bacterial proteins." Dr. Hart is co-lead author of the research, which is described in the Journal of Biological Chemistry (JBC).

The Pgp3 protein is a chlamydial virulence factor that is hypothesized to enhance the bug's ability to initially infect its human host and then evade host defenses. "Although my lab has worked on this protein for many years and gained a great deal of knowledge on it, we still don't know what roles it may play in chlamydial pathogenesis (disease development)," said co-lead author Guangming Zhong, M.D., Ph.D., professor of microbiology at the Health Science Center. "With the structural information uncovered in this paper, we can now test many hypotheses."

This is the second chlamydial virulence factor that Dr. Zhong's laboratory has identified; the first was a protein called CPAF. Structural studies have played an important role in understanding CPAF's functions in chlamydial infections, Dr. Zhong said.

Chlamydia's toll

According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), more than 1.4 million new cases of chlamydia were reported in 2011 across the 50 states and the District of Columbia. But the CDC says as many cases go unreported because most people with chlamydia have no symptoms and do not seek testing. If left untreated, chlamydia can permanently damage a woman's reproductive system. This can lead to ectopic pregnancy, pelvic inflammatory disease and infertility.

The disease burden of chlamydia worldwide is magnitudes greater, with new cases numbering in the dozens of millions per year. The World Health Organization estimates that 499 million new cases occur annually of four curable sexually transmitted diseases — chlamydia, syphilis, gonorrhea and trichomoniasis. This estimate is for cases in adults aged 15-49.

Chlamydia infection induces inflammatory pathology in humans, and Pgp3 may contribute to the pathology by activating inflammation via one of its structural features uncovered in the crystal structure, said Dr. Zhong, who has worked with Dr. Hart on the Pgp3 project for nearly four years.


Further Information
Access to this exclusive content is for Technology Networks Premium members only.

Join Technology Networks Premium for free access to:

  • Exclusive articles
  • Presentations from international conferences
  • Over 2,500+ scientific posters on ePosters
  • More Than 3,700+ scientific videos on LabTube
  • 35 community eNewsletters


Sign In



Forgotten your details? Click Here
If you are not a member you can join here

*Please note: By logging into TechnologyNetworks.com you agree to accept the use of cookies. To find out more about the cookies we use and how to delete them, see our privacy policy.

Related Content

Electrical Control of Cancer Cells
Research led by scientists at The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston (UTHealth) has revealed a new electrical mechanism that can control these switches.
Wednesday, August 26, 2015
Mass Extinctions Can Accelerate Evolution
A computer science team at The University of Texas at Austin has found that robots evolve more quickly and efficiently after a virtual mass extinction modeled after real-life disasters such as the one that killed off the dinosaurs.
Tuesday, August 18, 2015
Critical New Insights on DNA Repair
The enzyme fumarase is key to reversing genetic damage leading to cancer and therapy resistance.
Wednesday, August 05, 2015
Researchers Develop Vaccine that Protects Primates Against Ebola
A collaborative team from The University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston and the National Institutes of Health have developed an inhalable vaccine that protects primates against Ebola.
Thursday, July 23, 2015
Can Cell Cycle Protein Prevent or Kill Breast Cancer Tumors?
An MD Anderson study has shown the potential of a simple molecule involved in cancer metabolism as a powerful therapeutic.
Monday, July 20, 2015
Partly Human Yeast Show A Common Ancestor’s Lasting Legacy
Edward Marcotte and his colleagues at the University of Texas at Austin created hundreds of strains of humanized yeast by inserting into each a single human gene and turning off the corresponding yeast gene.
Tuesday, May 26, 2015
Cancer-Causing Virus Blocks Human Immune Response
Epstein-Barr virus shown to outwit the human immune response using microRNAs.
Wednesday, January 28, 2015
Researchers Reveal Genomic Diversity Of Individual Lung Tumors
Findings suggest sequencing a single region of a localized tumor will identify driver mutations.
Friday, October 10, 2014
How Fluid Flow Influences Neuron Growth
A University of Texas at Arlington team exploring how neuron growth can be controlled in the lab and, possibly, in the human body has published a new paper in Nature Scientific Reports on how fluid flow could play a significant role.
Wednesday, October 08, 2014
3-in-1 Spectroscopy System Improves Skin Cancer Detection
The new device may detect cancerous skin lesions early on, leading to better treatment outcomes and ultimately saving lives.
Thursday, August 07, 2014
Method Developed at UT Arlington Allows Quantitative Nanoscopic Imaging Through Silicon
A team of scientists has figured out how to quantitatively observe cellular processes taking place on so-called “lab on a chip” devices in a silicon environment.
Monday, October 07, 2013
Researchers Reveal New Enzyme that Acts as Innate Immunity Sensor
Two studies by researchers at UT Southwestern Medical Center could lead to new treatments for lupus and other autoimmune diseases and strengthen current therapies for viral, bacterial, and parasitic infections.
Monday, February 18, 2013
Unique Peptide Could Treat Cancers, Neurological Disorders, Infectious Diseases
Scientists have synthesized a peptide that shows potential for pharmaceutical development through an ability to induce a cell-recycling process called autophagy.
Monday, February 18, 2013
Designer Bacteria May Lead to Better Vaccines
Researchers have developed a menu of 61 new strains of genetically engineered bacteria that may improve the efficacy of vaccines for diseases such as flu, pertussis, cholera and HPV.
Wednesday, January 23, 2013
Biologists Unlocking the Secrets of Plant Defenses, One Piece at a Time
Researchers examining how the hormone jasmonate works to protect plants and promote their growth have revealed how a transcriptional repressor of the jasmonate signaling pathway makes its way into the nucleus of the plant cell.
Thursday, December 13, 2012
Scientific News
The Changing Tides of the In Vitro Diagnostics Market
With the increasing focus in personalized medicine, diagnostics plays a crucial role in patient monitoring.
LaVision BioTec Reports on the Neuro Research on the Human Brain After Trauma
Company reports on the work of Dr Ali Ertürk from the Institute for Stroke and Dementia Research at LMU Munich.
NIH Study Shows No Benefit of Omega-3 Supplements for Cognitive Decline
Research was published in the Journal of the American Medical Association.
Less May Be More in Slowing Cholera Epidemics
Mathematical model shows more cases may be prevented and more lives saved when using one dose of cholera vaccine instead of recommended two doses.
Investigating the Vape
Expert independent review concludes that e-cigarettes have potential to help smokers quit.
NIH Launches Human RSV Study
Study aims to understand infection in healthy adults to aid development of RSV medicines, vaccines.
Researchers Discover Synthesis of a New Nanomaterial
Interdisciplinary team creates biocomposite for first time using physiological conditions.
Poor Survival Rates in Leukemia Linked to Persistent Genetic Mutations
For patients with an often-deadly form of leukemia, new research suggests that lingering cancer-related mutations – detected after initial treatment with chemotherapy – are associated with an increased risk of relapse and poor survival.
Flu Remedies Help Combat E. coli Bacteria
Physiologists from the University of Zurich have now discovered why the intestinal bacterium Escherichia coli (E. coli) multiplies heavily and has an inflammatory effect.
Marijuana Genome Unraveled
A study by Canadian researchers is providing a clearer picture of the evolutionary history and genetic organization of cannabis, a step that could have agricultural, medical and legal implications for this valuable crop.
Scroll Up
Scroll Down
Skyscraper Banner

Skyscraper Banner
Go to LabTube
Go to eposters
 
Access to the latest scientific news
Exclusive articles
Upload and share your posters on ePosters
Latest presentations and webinars
View a library of 1,800+ scientific and medical posters
2,500+ scientific and medical posters
A library of 2,500+ scientific videos on LabTube
3,700+ scientific videos
Close
Premium CrownJOIN TECHNOLOGY NETWORKS PREMIUM FREE!