Role of connexin-43 hemichannels in the pathogenesis of Yersinia enterocolitica
Velasquez Almonacid, L A × Tafuri, S Dipineto, L Matteoli, Gianluca Fiorillo, E Della Morte, R Fioretti, A Menna, L F Staiano, N #
The Veterinary Journal vol:182 issue:3 pages:452-457
Connexin (Cx) channels are sites of cytoplasmic communication between contacting cells. Evidence indicates that the opening of hemichannels occurs under both physiological and pathological conditions. In this paper, the involvement of Cx-43 hemichannels is demonstrated in the pathogenesis of Yersinia. Parental HeLa cells and transfected HeLa cells stably expressing Cx-43 (HCx43) were infected with Yersiniaenterocolitica, and bacterial uptake was measured by the colony-forming unit method. Bacterial uptake was higher in HCx43 cells than in parental cells and was inhibited by the Cx channel blocker, 18-alpha-glycyrrhetinic acid (AGA). The inhibitory effect of AGA was more pronounced on the Y. enterocolitica uptake by HCx43 cells than by parental cells. The ability of HCx43 cells to incorporate the permeable fluorescent tracer Lucifer Yellow (LY) was assessed. Dye incorporation was inhibited by AGA, whereas Y. enterocolitica infection of HCx43 cells increased LY incorporation. Western blotting analysis demonstrated that Y. enterocolitica infection of HCx43 cells induced tyrosine phosphorylation of Cx-43, thus supporting a critical role for Cx-43 in the strategies exploited by bacterial pathogens to invade non-phagocytic cells.