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Listeria Intracellular Growth and Virulence Require Host-Derived Lipoic Acid

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Science  17 Oct 2003:
Vol. 302, Issue 5644, pp. 462-464
DOI: 10.1126/science.1088170

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Abstract

Listeria monocytogenes is a Gram-positive intracytosolic pathogen that causes severe disease in pregnant and immunocompromised individuals. We found that L. monocytogenes lacking the lipoate protein ligase LplA1 was defective for growth specifically in the host cytosol and was less virulent in animals by a factor of 300. A major target for LplA1, the E2 subunit of pyruvate dehydrogenase (PDH), lacked a critical lipoyl modification when the ΔlplA1 strain was grown intracellularly, which suggests that abortive growth was due to loss of PDH function. Thus, the use of host-derived lipoic acid may be a critical process for in vivo replication of bacterial pathogens.

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