openPR Logo
Press release

Campus Vienna Biocenter: Nanostructures of the Infective Apparatus of Salmonella

06-02-2006 01:10 PM CET | Science & Education

Press release from: PR&D - Public Relations for Research & Development

/ PR Agency: PR&D
In Salmonella, structural changes to the molecular infection apparatus also signal an end to its further assembly. The mechanistic details of this sophisticated feedback system, which takes place at molecular level, have now been published in NATURE. Better understanding of how this pathogen’s needle-like secretion injectisome is formed will offer new approaches to preventing the infection process in future. The results obtained by the team of Thomas Marlovits, joint IMP-IMBA Group Leader and head of the new "Spot of Excellence" at the Campus Vienna Biocenter, have now been explained by using modern techniques of three-dimensional cryo electron microscopy.


Salmonella cause typhoid fever and food poisoning. One of the key structural features of the infection process for this bacterium is the "type III secretion system" (TTSS). This enables it to secrete bacterial proteins into the host cell. The central component of this apparatus has a structure akin to that of a hollow needle, whose length is crucial for the success of the infection process.

Dr. Thomas C. Marlovits, scientific head of the new "Vienna Spot of Excellence", together with Prof. Jorge E. Galan (Yale University, USA) and other colleagues from the USA, has now explained how the exact length of the needle is determined during the assembly of this biological nano-machine. Says Dr. Marlovits: "A fine example of molecular multi-tasking, the TTSS is not only responsible for transporting bacterial proteins into the host cell, but also for its own assembly from some 200 individual structural proteins. The length of the needle structure is controlled by a sophisticated mechanism. The core of this mechanism is the change in the specificity of the TTSS for different proteins. Although the TTSS still has a high specificity for its own structural proteins during the initial phase of the assembly process, this specificity changes later to handle the proteins that are important for the actual infection process. A change in the structure of the TTSS is crucial for this transformation."

In actual fact, the TTSS comprises four important components: a base anchored into the bacterial membrane with a socket-like structure, plus an overlying inner ring structure on which the needle is built. Marlovits has now succeeded in demonstrating that the ring structure firmly binds the needle with the socket-like structure and the base. This bond also effects a structural change to the base, which impacts on its ability to bind to proteins from the cytoplasmic side of the cell. In this situation, the structural change acts as a signal to indicate that the needle is finished. Instead of assembly proteins, the proteins that are then transported are the ones required for the infection process.

Crucial for the impressive results obtained by Marlovits and his team was the combination of high-resolution imaging methods – cryo electron microscopy - with the molecular genetic analysis of mutants that form unusually long needle structures. The team knew that the protein InvJ influenced needle length - but how this influence is exerted was not fully understood. Marlovits’ comparison yielded a surprisingly clear picture: the mutants lacked the inner ring structure completely. Since these mutants are nevertheless able to form needle structures, and indeed extremely long ones, it was suspected that the inner ring structure provides a type of stop signal for the needle-building process - a signal that the mutants lacked. Further analyses then showed further clear structural differences between the bases of the wild types and those of the mutants. Marlovits’ hypothesis is now that this structural change influences the binding of other proteins that are channelled via the TTSS – and thus provides the stop signal for the needle-building process.

In addition to the basis for further work on the infection channel, this stop signal hypothesis, published in Nature, also represents an excellent starting signal for Marlovits in the work just begun at the "Vienna Spot of Excellence" at the Research Institute of Molecular Pathology (IMP) and the Institute of Molecular Biotechnology (IMBA).


Graphics and 3-D animations at http://www.imp.ac.at/events/ev_hp.html or http://www.imba.oeaw.ac.at/press-releases


Supported by innovatives-oesterreich.at, the agency PR&D, Campus Vienna Biocenter Association and dialog gentechnik


Vienna, 2nd June 2006

About the "Vienna Spots of Excellence"
The "Vienna Spots of Excellence" are a funding initiative by the City of Vienna. They aim at promoting research projects carried out in cooperation by commercial and scientific institutions. Following the first call earlier this year, three projects were chosen for funding in the program. One of them is located at the "Campus Vienna Biocenter" and is known under the working title of "CMCN – Center of Molecular and Cellular Nanostructure Vienna". The scientific coordinator of the project is Thomas Marlovits, formerly at the Yale School of Medicine and now a joint Group Leader at the IMP- IMBA Research Center.

About the IMP- IMBA Research Center
The Research Institute of Molecular Pathology (IMP), established in 1988 by Boehringer Ingelheim, and the Institute of Molecular Biotechnology of the Austrian Academy of Sciences (IMBA), which went into operation in 2003, have agreed on a close research collaboration. Under the name "IMP-IMBA Research Center", the two institutes share most of the administrative and scientific infrastructure. Together, IMBA and IMP employ over 300 people from 30 different nations. Both institutes are members of the "Campus Vienna Biocenter".

About the Campus Vienna Biocenter
The Campus Vienna Biocenter is one of the largest R&D clusters in Austria with approx. 1,000 scientists from 40 nations at 16 organisations. Academic departments (University of Vienna, Medical University of Vienna, subsumed in the Max F. Perutz Laboratories), private research institutes (IMP - Institute of Molecular Pathology) and institutes of the Austrian Academy of Sciences (IMBA - Institute of Molecular Biotechnology and GMI - Gregor Mendel-Institute) are also located here along with commercial R&D companies, service companies and training course centres (www.viennabiocenter.com).

Scientific Contact:
Dr. Thomas C. Marlovits
IMP-IMBA Research Center
A-1030 Vienna, Austria
T +43 / 1 / 79730 - 358
E marlovits@imp.univie.ac.at

Copy Editing & Distribution:
PR&D - Public Relations for Research & Development
Campus Vienna Biocenter 2
A-1030 Vienna, Austria
T +43 / 1 / 505 70 44
E contact@prd.at

This release was published on openPR.

Permanent link to this press release:

Copy
Please set a link in the press area of your homepage to this press release on openPR. openPR disclaims liability for any content contained in this release.

You can edit or delete your press release Campus Vienna Biocenter: Nanostructures of the Infective Apparatus of Salmonella here

News-ID: 9386 • Views: 1426

More Releases from PR&D - Public Relations for Research & Development

BALZAN PRIZES 2008: PRIZE WINNERS TO BE ANNOUNCED ON 8 SEPTEMBER
Vienna, 2 September 2008. The International Balzan Foundation will announce the winners of this year’s prestigious Balzan prizes on 8 September 2008 in Milan. The foundation will be awarding the prizes in honour of exceptional research in Preventive Medicine, the Science of Climate Change, the Visual Arts Since 1700 and Moral Philosophy. The prizes, which are each worth one million Swiss Francs, are to be presented on 21 November in
"Wanted - spaceship engine noise" Intelligent sound database developed
St. Poelten, AUSTRIA 26 May 2008 – From 30 May 2008, media producers will be able to access an efficient and easy-to-use new technology that will help them track down the sound effects they need. After two and a half years of development work, the AllThatSounds (ATS) intelligent database for sounds and noises is going online at allthatsounds.net . The database has been designed and developed by a research
EU TEAM DEVELOPS NEW ALZHEIMER'S VACCINE FROM AUSTRIA
A recently approved project of the sixth EU Framework Programme – MimoVax – is focussing on a new target for an Alzheimer's vaccine. The project, coordinated by the Austrian company Affiris GmbH, centres on the use of immune reactions to combat previously overlooked forms of the beta-amyloid that cause Alzheimer's disease. It is being run by seven partner organisations from three countries and has received an exceptionally positive response from
EQUAL PAY. BETTER PERFORMANCE. EXPERIMENT REVEALS: STANDARDISED CONTRACTS MAKE E …
Standardised employment contracts based on the \"equal work, equal pay\" principle boost motivation. There is a clear increase in performance levels and market efficiency compared to working conditions based on individually negotiated contracts. This important finding was uncovered by scientists from the University of Innsbruck, Austria, as they analysed results from an economic experiment. The project, supported by the Austrian Science Fund (FWF), has attracted great interest in Austria, as

All 5 Releases


More Releases for Vienna

Blue bleu blau blu 2017 Vienna
BIENNALE AUSTRIA association presents on occasion of the exhibition "blue bleu blau blu 2017 Vienna“ positions of artists from Australia, Denmark, Egypt, Germany, Finland, Israel, Italy, Kenya, Netherlands, Russia, Switzerland, Serbia and Austria on the subject of BLUE from 16 – 22 October 2017 at AUSSTELLUNGSRAUM, Gumpendorfer Strasse 23, 1060 Vienna, Austria. “Leonardo da Vinci describes the nature and effect of the color BLUE as immaterial, BLUE is not a color
InterNetX at Domain pulse 2011 in Vienna
(REGENSBURG – VIENNA, February 17, 2011) – This year, the German-speaking branch meeting Domain pulse is taking place on February 17 and 18, 2011 in the Austrian city of Vienna, with the participation of InterNetX. It is the third time that the Austrian registry nic.at is hosting the event in the capital city. The historical Palais Ferstel is the backdrop for this eighth Domain pulse event and provides the perfect
Vienna Tour Company, Vienna City Tours Announces New Website
Vienna City Tours, a company that offers guided tours in Vienna, Austria, announces their new website. The company offers many different types of Vienna tours that can be personalized to fit any tourist. VIENNA, AUSTRIA – Vienna City Tours, a company that specializes in guided tours in Vienna, recently announced their new website design. The website allows customers to easily find what types of tours are available and is full of information
VIENNA DESIGN WEEK - Vienna – A City Full of Design
The aim of VIENNA DESIGN WEEK is to show and enable people to experience the many-faceted creative work in the fields of product, furniture and industrial design, but also positions of experimental design. After a successful first festival last year, the work of numerous designers from Austria and abroad will also be presented this October with a growing programme of events. International Design in Vienna In cooperation
2006 Mozart Year in Vienna/Austria
From January 27 to 29 there will be a great party in Vienna celebrating Mozart`s 250th birthday. It will be an open party for everyone. Mozart`s birthday will be celebrated all over the city with music, films, and several other, sometimes surprising themes. There are five different tours: Mozart Friends and Enemies Mozart Viennese and Cosmopolitan Mozart Art and Love Mozart Life and Death Mozart Yesterday and Today Each of these special Mozart Tours contains four
European Venture Market Vienna
European Venture Market Vienna November 8th – 9th 2005 Nationalbibliothek – Wien www.europeanventuremarket.com The European Venture Market is a platform to facilitate the meeting of entrepreneurs and investors. It is a platform for any kind of financing with focus to equity. Giving the wide variety of investors joining the platform the Market is also suitable for any sectors. The European Venture Market is informal, discrete, personal and professional. Meet professionals with a high