The vacuolating cytotoxin (VacA) is a major virulence factor of Helicobacter pylori, the bacterium associated to gastroduodenal ulcers and stomach cancers. VacA induces formation of cellular vacuoles that originate from late endosomal compartments. VacA forms an anion-selective channel and its activity has been suggested to increase the osmotic pressure in the lumen of these acidic compartments, driving their swelling to vacuoles. Here, we have tested this proposal on isolated endosomes that allow one to manipulate at will the medium. We have found that VacA enhances the v-ATPase proton pump activity and the acidification of isolated endosomes in a Cl- dependent manner. Other counter-anions such as pyruvate, Br-, I- and SCN- can be transported by VacA with stimulation of the v-ATPase. The VacA action on isolated endosomes is associated with their increase in size. Single amino acid substituted VacA with no channel-forming and vacuolating activity is unable to induce swelling of endosomes. These data provide a direct evidence that the transmembrane VacA channel mediates an influx of anions into endosomes that stimulates the electrogenic v-ATPase proton pump, leading to their osmotic swelling and transformation into vacuoles.

The concerted action of the Helicobacter pylori cytotoxin VacA and of the v-ATPase proton pump induces swelling of isolated endosomes

CALORE, FEDERICA;DE BERNARD, MARINA;DELL'ANTONE, PAOLO;MONTECUCCO, CESARE
2007

Abstract

The vacuolating cytotoxin (VacA) is a major virulence factor of Helicobacter pylori, the bacterium associated to gastroduodenal ulcers and stomach cancers. VacA induces formation of cellular vacuoles that originate from late endosomal compartments. VacA forms an anion-selective channel and its activity has been suggested to increase the osmotic pressure in the lumen of these acidic compartments, driving their swelling to vacuoles. Here, we have tested this proposal on isolated endosomes that allow one to manipulate at will the medium. We have found that VacA enhances the v-ATPase proton pump activity and the acidification of isolated endosomes in a Cl- dependent manner. Other counter-anions such as pyruvate, Br-, I- and SCN- can be transported by VacA with stimulation of the v-ATPase. The VacA action on isolated endosomes is associated with their increase in size. Single amino acid substituted VacA with no channel-forming and vacuolating activity is unable to induce swelling of endosomes. These data provide a direct evidence that the transmembrane VacA channel mediates an influx of anions into endosomes that stimulates the electrogenic v-ATPase proton pump, leading to their osmotic swelling and transformation into vacuoles.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11577/2467281
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