Turse, Joshua Edward (2005-08). Concerning Brucella LPS: genetic analysis and role in host- agent interaction. Doctoral Dissertation.
B rucella lipopolysaccharide is an important component of virulence in brucellosis. Recent research in macrophage models has shown that Brucella LPS does not behave like classical LPS by stimulating potent inflammatory responses. The central hypothesis of this work is that O-antigen is dynamic signaling molecular and participates in complex interactions with the host to promote productive infection. A corollary to this is that the host environment is dynamic, and Brucella has evolved mechanisms to cope with changing environments. In an effort to understand the contribution of Brucella LPS to virulence and pathogenesis, the function of a metabolic locus important in the synthesis of LPS has been demonstrated and complemented. The spontaneous loss of LPS expression has been characterized. Contribution of LPS to acquisition of the host environment in tissue culture and mouse models has been explored. This work demonstrated that genes outside the O-antigen biosynthesis ( manBA) cluster contribute to LPS biosynthesis. Further high frequency mutation involving manBA is partly responsible for observed dissociation of Brucella strains. Finally, work herein attempts to look at the role of LPS in acquisition of the host environment and shows that LPS is important for recruiting particular cell populations within a host model of brucellosis.