Research / Scientific departments / Structural Biology and Chemistry / Units and Groups / Structural Biology of Bacterial Secretion / News
August 2013 : Amy Diallo joins the lab as a PhD Student.
|Amy graduated in 2013 from the National School of Biomolecular Technology in Bordeaux. Before Joining the lab, she was an intern in J. Bosch laboratory in Baltimore and in the EPOC laboratory in Bordeaux.|
July 2013 : Book "Bacterial membranes: Structural and Molecular Biology" edited by Han Remaut and Rémi Fronzes to be published by Horizon Press.
For more details : see http://www.horizonpress.com/membranes
June 2013: Discovery of a type IV pilus involved in natural transformation of Streptococcus pneumoniae, a major human pathogen.
|Natural genetic transformation, first discovered in Streptococcus pneumoniae by Griffith in 1928, is observed in many Gram-negative and Gram-positive bacteria. This process promotes genome plasticity and adaptability. In particular, it enables many human pathogens such as Streptococcus pneumoniae, Staphylococcus aureus or Neisseria gonorrhoeae to acquire resistance to antibiotics and/or to escape vaccines through the binding and incorporation of new genetic material. While it is well established that this process requires the binding and internalization of external DNA, the molecular details of these steps are unknown. In this study, we discovered a new appendage at the surface of S. pneumoniae cells. We show that this appendage is similar in morphology and composition to appendages called Type IV pili commonly found in Gram-negative bacteria. We demonstrate that this new pneumococcal pilus is essential for transformation and that it directly binds DNA. We propose that the transformation pilus is an essential piece of the transformation apparatus by capturing exogenous DNA at the bacterial cell surface.
Now published in Plos Pathogens