Brazilian Group Reveals Secret of Pneumonia Pathogen

BRAZIL - Researchers have identified a physiological difference between pathogenic and non-pathogenic strains of Mycoplasma hyopneumoniae (M. hyo), which may help towards the development of better control of enzootic pneumonia in future.
calendar icon 6 January 2010
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Pinto at the Biotechnology Centre in Porto Alegre and co-authors have published a paper in the latest issue of Proteome Science, describing their work looking at the pathogen causing enzootic pneumonia in pigs.

They explain that Mycoplasma hyopneumoniae is a highly infectious swine pathogen and is the causative agent of enzootic pneumonia (EP). Following the previous report of a proteomic survey of the pathogenic 7448 strain of swine pathogen, M. hyopneumoniae, they performed comparative protein profiling of three M. hyopneumoniae strains, namely the non-pathogenic J strain and the two pathogenic strains 7448 and 7422.


In 2DE comparisons, they report that they were able to identify differences in expression levels for 67 proteins, including the over-expression of some cytoadherence-related proteins only in the pathogenic strains. 2DE immunoblot analyses allowed the identification of differential proteolytic cleavage patterns of the P97 adhesin in the three strains. For more comprehensive protein profiling, an LC-MS/MS strategy was used.

Overall, 35 per cent of the M. hyopneumoniae genome coding capacity was covered. Partially overlapping profiles of identified proteins were observed in the strains with 81 proteins identified only in one strain and 54 proteins identified in two strains. Abundance analysis of proteins detected in more than one strain demonstrates the relative over-expression of 64 proteins, including the P97 adhesin in the pathogenic strains.


The researchers say their results indicate the physiological differences between the non-pathogenic strain, with its non-infective proliferate lifestyle, and the pathogenic strains, with its constitutive expression of adhesins, which would render the bacterium competent for adhesion and infection prior to host contact.


Pinto P.M., C.S. Klein, A. Zaha and H.B. Ferreira. 2009. Comparative proteomic analysis of pathogenic and non-pathogenic strains from the swine pathogen Mycoplasma hyopneumoniae. Proteome Science 2009, 7:45 doi:10.1186/1477-5956-7-45

Further Reading

- You can view the provisional PDF version of the full report by clicking here.

Further Reading

- Find out more information on enzootic pneumonia by clicking here.
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