Main content area

Quinolone-resistance in Salmonella is associated with decreased mRNA expression of virulence genes invA and avrA, growth and intracellular invasion and survival

Wang, Yu-Ping, Li, Lin, Shen, Jian-Zhong, Yang, Fu-Jiang, Wu, Yong-Ning
Veterinary microbiology 2009 v.133 no.4 pp. 328-334
mammals, animal diseases, salmonellosis, Salmonella, strains, pathotypes, virulence, microbial genetics, molecular genetics, genes, gene expression, messenger RNA, defense mechanisms, quinolones, strain differences, mutation, cell invasion, microbial growth, pathogen survival
A variety of environmental factors, such as oxygen, pH, osmolarity and antimicrobial agents, modulate the expression of Salmonella pathogenicity islands (SPI) genes. This study investigated SPI-1 gene expression and the pathogenicity of quinolone-resistant Salmonella. mRNA expression levels of the invA and avrA genes, located in SPI-1, in quinolone-susceptible and quinolone-resistant Salmonella strains were determined using real-time fluorescent quantitative reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR). Twenty-five quinolone-resistant Salmonella mutants were derived from quinolone-susceptible strains by multiple-passage selection through increasing concentrations of ciprofloxacin in vitro, while an additional 15 strains were quinolone-resistant Salmonella clinical isolates. Sequence analysis showed no gene deletion or point mutations of nine SPI-1 genes (including invA and avrA) occurred in either the selected or clinical quinolone-resistant strains, while a single gyrA point mutation (S83F) was observed in all 40 quinolone-resistant strains. The mRNA expression levels of invA and avrA were significantly decreased (P <0.005) in quinolone-resistant strains (clinically acquired or experimentally selected in vitro), compared to the quinolone-susceptible strains. The resistant strains also had a slower growth rate combined with decreased epithelial cell invasion and intracellular replication in epithelial cells and macrophages. The results suggest that quinolone-resistance may be associated with lower virulence and pathogenicity than in quinolone-susceptible strains.