Latest Articles Include:
- Nat Rev Micro 9(5):307 (2011)
- Nat Rev Micro 9(5):308 (2011)
- HIV: HIV hides in haematopoietic stem cells | PDF (142 KB)
- Nat Rev Micro 9(5):311 (2011)
Although current treatments for HIV/AIDS seek to manage the disease, the ultimate aim of any therapy is complete eradication of the virus. Unfortunately, full eradication of HIV is challenging, as the virus establishes latent reservoirs in resting CD4+T cells.
- Bacterial ecology: Microbial communities hold the fort | PDF (159 KB)
- Nat Rev Micro 9(5):312 (2011)
Different bacterial species that inhabit the same environment can form a robust community. However, how these communities respond to changes in the environment and what makes them stable in the presence of potential invaders have not always been clear.
- Archaea: Archaea shape up | PDF (179 KB)
- Nat Rev Micro 9(5):312 (2011)
Archaea come in various shapes, from cocci to filaments. However, unlike the cell shape determinants in bacteria, the factors that are important in cell shape determination in archaea are not well understood.
- Microbial ecology | Evolution | Bacterial toxins | PDF (98 KB)
- Nat Rev Micro 9(5):312 (2011)
Colonization-induced host-gut microbial metabolic interaction Claus, S. P.et al. mBio 2, e00271-10 (2011)
- Parasitology | Antimicrobials | Public health | PDF (99 KB)
- Nat Rev Micro 9(5):313 (2011)
Blood meal-derived heme decreases ROS levels in the midgut of Aedes aegypti and allows proliferation of intestinal microbiota Oliviera, J. H. M.et al. PLoS Pathog. 7, e1001320 (2011)
- Bacterial physiology: Flipping lipids | PDF (160 KB)
- Nat Rev Micro 9(5):314 (2011)
During peptidoglycan assembly, the lipid II precursor is synthesized in the cytoplasm and then 'flipped' across the cytoplasmic membrane before it is incorporated into the peptidoglycan layer. The mechanism underlying this translocation of lipid II across the membrane has remained unclear for a long time; however, Mohammadi et al.
- Virology: ESCRTing retroviruses to the exit | PDF (133 KB)
- Nat Rev Micro 9(5):314 (2011)
The endosomal sorting complex required for transport (ESCRT) machinery is required for several membrane scission events in eukaryotic cells, including those involved in the budding of some enveloped viruses from the plasma membrane. In mammals, the ESCRT machinery consists of three distinct complexes (ESCRT-I, ESCRT-II and ESCRT-III) that together contain more than 20 proteins and additional associated factors, such as the vacuolar protein sorting-associated protein 4A (VPS4A) ATPase.
- Bacterial Virulence: With a little help from my enemies | PDF (154 KB)
- Nat Rev Micro 9(5):315 (2011)
To optimize their survival in the host, pathogens such as Salmonella enterica subsp. enterica serovar Typhimurium need to recognize their surroundings and respond appropriately.
- Plant power: converting a kingdom | PDF (216 KB)
- Nat Rev Micro 9(5):316 (2011)
This month, Genome Watch looks at the potential for bacterially derived enzymes to degrade lignocellulose from plant biomass and thus provide an efficient way of producing biofuels.
- In the news | PDF (271 KB)
- Nat Rev Micro 9(5):317 (2011)
The number of new diagnoses of HIV almost doubled over the past decade in the United Kingdom, from 1,950 in 2001 to 3,780 in 2010, according to the UK Health Protection Agency. The economic burden of this disease on public health systems is enormous: if these cases had been prevented, over UK£32 million in costs would have been saved annually, or £1.2 billion over a lifetime.
- Paneth cells, antimicrobial peptides and maintenance of intestinal homeostasis
- Nat Rev Micro 9(5):356 (2011)
Building and maintaining a homeostatic relationship between a host and its colonizing microbiota entails ongoing complex interactions between the host and the microorganisms. The mucosal immune system, including epithelial cells, plays an essential part in negotiating this equilibrium. Paneth cells (specialized cells in the epithelium of the small intestine) are an important source of antimicrobial peptides in the intestine. These cells have become the focus of investigations that explore the mechanisms of host–microorganism homeostasis in the small intestine and its collapse in the processes of infection and chronic inflammation. In this Review, we provide an overview of the intestinal microbiota and describe the cell biology of Paneth cells, emphasizing the composition of their secretions and the roles of these cells in intestinal host defence and homeostasis. We also highlight the implications of Paneth cell dysfunction in susceptibility to chronic inflammatory bo! wel disease.
- Termination and antitermination: RNA polymerase runs a stop sign
- Nat Rev Micro 9(5):319 (2011)
Termination signals induce rapid and irreversible dissociation of the nascent transcript from RNA polymerase. Terminators at the end of genes prevent unintended transcription into the downstream genes, whereas terminators in the upstream regulatory leader regions adjust expression of the structural genes in response to metabolic and environmental signals. Premature termination within an operon leads to potentially deleterious defects in the expression of the downstream genes, but also provides an important surveillance mechanism. This Review discusses the actions of bacterial and phage antiterminators that allow RNA polymerase to override a terminator when the circumstances demand it.
- Molecular aspects of bacterial pH sensing and homeostasis
- Nat Rev Micro 9(5):330 (2011)
Diverse mechanisms for pH sensing and cytoplasmic pH homeostasis enable most bacteria to tolerate or grow at external pH values that are outside the cytoplasmic pH range they must maintain for growth. The most extreme cases are exemplified by the extremophiles that inhabit environments with a pH of below 3 or above 11. Here, we describe how recent insights into the structure and function of key molecules and their regulators reveal novel strategies of bacterial pH homeostasis. These insights may help us to target certain pathogens more accurately and to harness the capacities of environmental bacteria more efficiently.
- Pathogenomics of Xanthomonas: understanding bacterium–plant interactions
- Nat Rev Micro 9(5):344 (2011)
Xanthomonas is a large genus of Gram-negative bacteria that cause disease in hundreds of plant hosts, including many economically important crops. Pathogenic species and pathovars within species show a high degree of host plant specificity and many exhibit tissue specificity, invading either the vascular system or the mesophyll tissue of the host. In this Review, we discuss the insights that functional and comparative genomic studies are providing into the adaptation of this group of bacteria to exploit the extraordinary diversity of plant hosts and different host tissues.
- Fusing structure and function: a structural view of the herpesvirus entry machinery
- Nat Rev Micro 9(5):369 (2011)
Herpesviruses are double-stranded DNA, enveloped viruses that infect host cells through fusion with either the host cell plasma membrane or endocytic vesicle membranes. Efficient infection of host cells by herpesviruses is remarkably more complex than infection by other viruses, as it requires the concerted effort of multiple glycoproteins and involves multiple host receptors. The structures of the major viral glycoproteins and a number of host receptors involved in the entry of the prototypical herpesviruses, the herpes simplex viruses (HSVs) and Epstein–Barr virus (EBV), are now known. These structural studies have accelerated our understanding of HSV and EBV binding and fusion by revealing the conformational changes that occur on virus–receptor binding, depicting potential sites of functional protein and lipid interactions, and identifying the probable viral fusogen.
- Herpesviruses remodel host membranes for virus egress
- Nat Rev Micro 9(5):382 (2011)
Herpesviruses replicate their DNA and package this DNA into capsids in the nucleus. These capsids then face substantial obstacles to their release from cells. Unlike other DNA viruses, herpesviruses do not depend on disruption of nuclear and cytoplasmic membranes for their release. Enveloped particles are formed by budding through inner nuclear membranes, and then these perinuclear enveloped particles fuse with outer nuclear membranes. Unenveloped capsids in the cytoplasm are decorated with tegument proteins and then undergo secondary envelopment by budding into trans-Golgi network membranes, producing infectious particles that are released. In this Review, we describe the remodelling of host membranes that facilitates herpesvirus egress.
- Microbiology turns inwards
- Nat Rev Micro 9(5):394 (2011)
In this Editorial, we mistakenly credited the Human Genome Project instead of the Human Microbiome Project in the efforts to understand human microbiome. The text should have read: "The coordinated efforts of the Human Microbiome Project (sponsored by the US National Institutes of Health) and the MetaHIT project (sponsored by the Seventh Framework Programme of the European Commission) have taken advantage of the latest sequence technologies to reveal in great detail the composition of the human gut microbiota, and similar projects are focusing on other body sites." We apologize to researchers involved in the Human Microbiome Project and to the readers for any confusion caused.