This paper presents the phytosociological description of a drained swamp community, Veratro albi-Fraxinetum angustifoliae, so far found only in the Nyírség at Nyírábrány “Kis-kőrises”, “Mogyorósi-erdő”; Vámospércs “Jónásrész-Kőrises”; and Vámospércs “Jónásrész-Buzita”. The habitat of the community is transitional between that of alder swamps (Fraxino pannonicae-Alnetum glutinosae), and hardwood riparian forests (Fraxino pannonicae-Ulmetum). The community is characterised by high proportions of character species of Alnion glutinosae and Molinion coerulei as well as Quercetea pubescentis-petraeae s. l. whereas character species of the order Fagetalia are almost completely absent. It hosts several rare, often threatened species, such as Angelica palustris, Ophioglossum vulgatum, Trollius europaeus and Veratrum album.
Authors:Katharina Mrazek, Stefan Bereswill, and Markus M. Heimesaat
Intestinal carriage of multi-drug resistant (MDR) Gram-negative bacteria including Pseudomonas aeruginosa (Psae) constitutes a pivotal prerequisite for subsequent fatal endogenous infections in patients at risk. We here addressed whether fecal microbiota transplantation (FMT) could effectively combat MDR-Psae carriage. Therefore, secondary abiotic mice were challenged with MDR-Psae by gavage. One week later, mice were subjected to peroral FMT from either murine or human donors on 3 consecutive days. Irrespective of murine or human origin of fecal transplant, intestinal MDR-Psae loads decreased as early as 24 h after the initial FMT. Remarkably, the murine FMT could lower intestinal MDR-Psae burdens by approximately 4 log orders of magnitude within 1 week. In another intervention study, mice harboring a human gut microbiota were perorally challenged with MDR-Psae and subjected to murine FMT on 3 consecutive days, 1 week later. Strikingly, within 5 days, murine FMT resulted in lower loads and carrier rates of MDR-Psae in mice with a human gut microbiota. In conclusion, FMT might be a promising antibiotics-independent option to combat intestinal MDR-Psae carriage and thus prevent from future endogenous infections of patients at risk.
Authors:Andrea Heinzlmann, Márk Oláh, and Katalin Köves
It was previously shown that intracerebroventricular administration of pituitary adenylate cyclase-activating polypeptide (PACAP) prior to GnRH mobilization in proestrus prevents ovulation in rats. In this study, we examined whether PACAP given intranasally could influence luteinizing hormone (LH) and prolactin (PRL) surges and ovulation.
On the day of proestrus PACAP, β-cyclodextrin (modifier of blood–brain barrier) or PACAP + β-cyclodextrin was applied intranasally between 12:30 and 13:00. Blood samples were taken at 16:00, 18:00, and 20:00 for measuring plasma hormone levels. In the next morning, the expelled ova were counted. β-Cyclodextrin was also administered to male and diestrous female rats between 12:30 and 13:00 and blood was taken at 18:00.
PACAP prevented LH and PRL surges and ovulation in about half of the rats, β-cyclodextrin alone more effectively prevented ovulation. When PACAP and β-cyclodextrin were administered together, more rats ovulated like when PACAP given alone. β-Cyclodextrin did not influence LH and PRL levels in diestrous females; however, in males, it significantly enhanced PRL level.
Not only the intracerebroventricular, but the intranasal application of PACAP prevented ovulation. β-Cyclodextrin alone is more effective than PACAP and enhances PRL levels in male rats. PACAP and β-cyclodextrin given together weaken each other’s effect. β-Cyclodextrin, as excipient of various drugs, has to be used carefully in human medications.
Authors:Souba Diandé, Gisèle Badoum, Adjima Combary, Issaka Zombra, Tandaogo Saouadogo, Léon T. Sawadogo, Bayéma Nébié, Saïdou Gnanou, Adama Zigani, Seydou Mohamed Ouédraogo, Adama Diallo, Seydou Kaboré, and Lassana Sangaré
Setting: A survey of the prevalence of drug-resistant tuberculosis (DR-TB) in new and previously treated patients (PTPs) was performed in Burkina Faso from 2016 to 2017.
Design: In this cross-sectional survey, a structured questionnaire was administered to eligible smear-positive patients in all 86 diagnostic and treatment centers of the country to collect their socio-demographic characteristics and medical histories. Their sputa were tested using the Mycobacterium tuberculosis/rifampicin (MTB/RIF) Xpert assay. Those which were found to be positive for TB and rifampicin-resistant were also tested with GenoType MTBDRplus2.0 and MTBDRsl2.0. Univariate and multivariate logistic regressions were performed to determine risk factors associated with rifampicin resistance.
Results: Of the 1140 smear-positive patients enrolled, 995 new and 145 PTPs were positive for MTB complex by Xpert. Of these, 2.0% (20/995, 95% confidence interval (CI): 1.1–2.9) of the new cases and 14.5% (95% CI: 14.2–20.2) of the PTPs were resistant to rifampicin; 83% of them has multidrug-resistant tuberculosis (MDR-TB). None were pre-extensively drug-resistant TB (pre-XDR-TB) or XDR-TB. Only the previous treatment was significantly associated with rifampicin resistance, p < 0.0001.
Conclusion: Similar to global trends, rifampicin resistance was significantly higher in patients with prior TB treatment (14.5%) than in naïve patients (2.0%). These percentages are slightly below the global averages, but nonetheless suggest the need for continued vigilance. Extending the use of Xpert testing should strengthen the surveillance of DR-TB in Burkina Faso.
Authors:Margit Kollaricsné Horváth, Borbála Hoffmann, István Cernák, Szilveszter Baráth, Zsolt Polgár, and János Taller
Significant differences in nitrogen use efficiency (NUE) were detected previously among potato cultivars. Exploration of the genetic background may facilitate the breeding of cultivars with highly effective nitrogen use.
Expression of NUE genes was analyzed at three different N-supply levels in five potato genotypes. Correlations of NUE gene expressions and agronomical parameters with such indices as the nitrogen uptake efficiency, nitrogen utilization efficiency, NUE, and harvest indices were analyzed.
The correlations between expression level of the nitrate–reductase, nitrite–reductase, ammonium transporter, and asparagine synthase genes and different agronomically important parameters were detected.
Our results contribute to more rational, genotype-dependent nitrogen use in potato production and have relevance in breeding of new cultivars with better nitrogen utilization, as well as in production of seed potato.
Authors:Luis Francisco Sánchez-Anguiano, Nadia Velázquez-Hernández, Fernando Martín Guerra-Infante, Marisela Aguilar-Durán, Alma Rosa Pérez-Álamos, Sergio Estrada-Martínez, José Antonio Navarrete-Flores, Ada Agustina Sandoval-Carrillo, Elizabeth Irasema Antuna-Salcido, Jesús Hernández-Tinoco, and Cosme Alvarado-Esquivel
Purpose: We aimed to determine the association between Chlamydia trachomatis infection and female sex work, and the association between sociodemographic, obstetric, and behavioral characteristics of female sex workers and C. trachomatis infection.
Methods: Through a case–control study design, we studied 201 female sex workers and 201 age-matched women without sex work in Durango City, Mexico. C. trachomatis DNA was detected in cervical swab samples using polymerase chain reaction.
Results: C. trachomatis DNA was detected in 32 (15.9%) of the 201 cases and in 6 (3.0%) of the 201 controls (odds ratio [OR] = 6.15; 95% confidence interval [CI]: 2.5–15.0; P < 0.001). The frequency of infection with C. trachomatis in female sex workers did not vary (P > 0.05) regardless of the history of pregnancies, deliveries, cesarean sections, or miscarriages. Regression analysis of the behavioral characteristics showed that infection with C. trachomatis was associated only with consumption of alcohol (OR = 2.39; 95% CI: 1.0–5.71; P = 0.04).
Conclusions: We conclude that C. trachomatis infection is associated with female sex work in Durango City, Mexico. This is the first age-matched case–control study on the prevalence of C. trachomatis infection in female sex workers in Mexico using detection of C. trachomatis DNA in cervical samples.
Authors:Hans Kollenda, Hagen Frickmann, Rania Ben Helal, Dorothea Franziska Wiemer, Habiba Naija, Mohamed Sélim El Asli, Melanie Egold, Joachim Jakob Bugert, Susann Handrick, Roman Wölfel, Farouk Barguellil, and Mohamed Ben Moussa
Background: Carbapenem-resistance is frequently detected in Enterobacteriaceae isolated from patients in Tunisia. The study was performed to identify frequent carbapenemases in Tunisian isolates.
Methods: Between May 2014 and January 2018, 197 ertapenem-resistant Enterobacteriaceae were isolated at the microbiological department of the Military Hospital of Tunis. The strains were phenotypically characterized and then subjected to in-house polymerase chain reaction (PCR) targeting the carbapenemase genes blaIMP, blaVIM, blaNDM, blaSPM, blaAIM, blaDIM, blaGIM, blaSIM, blaKPC, blaBIC, and blaOXA-48.
Results: The assessed 197 ertapenem-resistant Enterobacteriaceae from Tunis comprised 170 Klebsiella pneumoniae, 19 Enterobacter cloacae, 6 Escherichia coli, 1 Citrobacter sedlakii, and 1 Enterobacter asburiae. Thereby, 55 out of 197 isolates (27.9%) were from blood cultures, suggesting a systemic disease. The carbapenemase gene blaOXA-48 quantitatively dominated by far with 153 detections, followed by blaNDM with 14 detections, which were distributed about the whole study interval. In contrast, blaBIC and blaVIM were only infrequently identified in 5 and 3 cases, respectively, while the other carbapenamases were not observed.
Conclusions: The carbapenemase gene blaOXA-48 was identified in the vast majority of ertapenem-resistant Tunisian Enterobacteriaceae while all other assessed carbapenemases were much less abundant. In a quantitatively relevant minority of isolates, the applied PCR-based screening approach did not identify any carbapenemases.
Authors:K. Hoenes, M. Hess, P. Vatter, B. Spellerberg, and M. Hessling
Photoinactivation of bacteria with visible light has been reported in numerous studies. Radiation around 405 nm is absorbed by endogenous porphyrins and generates reactive oxygen species that destroy bacteria from within. Blue light in the spectral range of 450–470 nm also exhibits an antibacterial effect, but it is weaker than 405 nm radiation, and the photosensitizers involved have not been clarified yet, even though flavins and porphyrins are possible candidates.
There are significantly fewer photoinactivation studies on fungi. To test if visible light can inactivate fungi and to elucidate the mechanisms involved, the model organism Saccharomyces cerevisiae (DSM no. 70449) was irradiated with violet (405 nm) and blue (450 nm) light. The mean irradiation doses required for a one log reduction of colony forming units for this strain were 182 J/cm2 and 526 J/cm2 for 405 nm and 450 nm irradiation, respectively.
To investigate the cell damaging mechanisms, trypan blue staining was performed. However, even strongly irradiated cultures hardly showed any stained S. cerevisiae cells, indicating an intact cell membrane and thus arguing against the previously suspected mechanism of cell membrane damage during photoinactivation with visible light at least for the investigated strain. The results are compatible with photoinactivated Saccharomyces cerevisiae cells being in a viable but nonculturable state.
To identify potential fungal photosensitizers, the absorption and fluorescence of Saccharomyces cerevisiae cell lysates were determined. The spectral absorption and fluorescence results are in favor of protoporphyrin IX as the most important photosensitizer at 405 nm radiation. For 450 nm irradiation, riboflavin and other flavins may be the main photosensitizer candidates, since porphyrins do not play a prominent role at this wavelength. No evidence of the involvement of other photosensitizers was found in the spectral data of this strain.
Authors:Katja Fischer, Jan-Moritz Doehn, Christian Herr, Carolin Lachner, Annina Heinrich, Olivia Kershaw, Meike Voss, Max H. Jacobson, Achim D. Gruber, Matthias Clauss, Martin Witzenrath, Robert Bals, Birgitt Gutbier, and Hortense Slevogt
In chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), acute exacerbations and emphysema development are characteristics for disease pathology. COPD is complicated by infectious exacerbations with acute worsening of respiratory symptoms with Moraxella catarrhalis as one of the most frequent pathogens. Although cigarette smoke (CS) is the primary risk factor, additional molecular mechanisms for emphysema development induced by bacterial infections are incompletely understood. We investigated the impact of M. catarrhalis on emphysema development in CS exposed mice and asked whether an additional infection would induce a solubilization of pro-apoptotic and pro-inflammatory endothelial monocyte-activating-protein-2 (EMAPII) to exert its activities in the pulmonary microvasculature and other parts of the lungs not exposed directly to CS.
Mice were exposed to smoke (6 or 9 months) and/or infected with M. catarrhalis. Lungs, bronchoalveolar lavage fluid (BALF), and plasma were analyzed.
CS exposure reduced ciliated area, caused rarefaction of the lungs, and induced apoptosis. EMAPII was increased independent of prior smoke exposure in BALF of infected mice. Importantly, acute M. catarrhalis infection increased release of matrixmetalloproteases-9 and -12, which are involved in emphysema development and comprise a mechanism of EMAPII release.
Our data suggest that acute M. catarrhalis infection represents an independent risk factor for emphysema development in smoke-exposed mice.
Authors:Carlos Florindo, Cinthia Alves Barroco, Inês Silvestre, Vera Damião, João Paulo Gomes, Barbara Spellerberg, Ilda Santos-Sanches, and Maria José Borrego
Extracellular deoxyribonucleases (DNases) contribute to the spread of pathogenic bacteria through the evasion from host innate immunity. Our main objective was to evaluate the production of extracellular DNases by human and bovine Streptococcus agalactiae clinical strains and perform a correlation of genetic lineages and DNase activity with capsular type, genetic determinants, clinical origin (colonization and infection), and host (human or bovine). DNase activity was evaluated by qualitative and quantitative assays for a collection of 406 human (n = 285) and bovine (n = 121) strains. All (121/121) bovine were isolated from mastitis and revealed to be DNase (+), indicating a putative pathogenic role in this clinical scenario. From the human S. agalactiae strains, 86% (245/285) showed DNase activity, among which all strains belonging to capsular types, namely, Ia, Ib, III-2, and IV. All CC17 strains (n = 58) and 56/96 (58.3%) of the CC19 displayed DNase activity. DNase (−) strains belonged to the CC19 group. However, the subcharacterization of CC19 S. agalactiae strains through multiple-locus variable number tandem repeat analysis (MLVA), antibiotic resistance, mobile elements, and surface proteins did not provide any distinction among DNase producers and non-producers.
The production of DNases by all human CC17 strains, about two-fifths of human CC19, and all bovine strains, suggest an important contribution of DNases to hypervirulence.