Northwestern Events Calendar


M-I Dept. Seminar Series - 'Purpose-Driven Creativity of Legionella: The Steps Before Virulence Factor Phospholipases Come Into Play"

When: Tuesday, March 8, 2022
12:00 PM - 1:00 PM Central

Where: Simpson Querrey Biomedical Research Center, Auditorium, 303 E. Superior Street, Chicago, IL 60611 map it

Audience: Faculty/Staff - Post Docs/Docs - Graduate Students

Contact: Cynthia Naugles   (312) 503-0489

Group: Department of Microbiology-Immunology Seminars/Events

Category: Lectures & Meetings


Title: "Purpose-Driven Creativity of Legionella: The Steps Before Virulence Factor Phospholipases Come Into Play"

Dr. Antje Flieger, Director and Professor, Head Division of Enteropathogenic Bacteria and Legionella

Robert Koch-Institut, Germany

Faculty Host: Nicholas Cianciotto, PhD, Professor


Phospholipases are a diverse class of enzymes produced both by eukaryotic hosts as well as by pathogenic microorganisms. Major insights into action modes of bacterial phospholipases during infection have been provided in recent years. In many cases, these enzymes may act as potent membrane destructors, or they may rather manipulate host signalling paths. In Legionella pneumophila, an important pneumonia-causing bacterium, phospholipases play a dominant role. At least 15 phospholipases A (PLA), three phospholipases C, and one phospholipase D are encoded in the genome. L. pneumophila PLAs divide into three major groups: the GDSL, the patatin-like, and the PlaB-like enzymes. In order to exert activity at the right time and site in infection, the variety of enzymes needs to be produced, transported, and activated in a suitable manner. Especially the latter is important because bacterial phospholipases may also harm the pathogen itself. Sophisticated activation mechanisms are therefore required to prevent self-damage before protein export but warrant activity at the pathogen–host interface. In my talk I will outline a selection of the creative and purpose-driven mechanisms of Legionella to accomplish spatial and temporal enzyme control. 



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