Tet38 Efflux Pump Affects Staphylococcus aureus Internalization by Epithelial Cells through Interaction with CD36 and Contributes to Bacterial Escape from Acidic and Nonacidic Phagolysosomes
We previously reported that the Tet38 efflux pump is involved in internalization of Staphylococcus aureus by A549 lung epithelial cells. A lack of tet38 reduced bacterial uptake by A549 cells to 36% of that of the parental strain RN6390. Using invasion assays coupled with confocal microscopy imaging, we studied the host cell receptor(s) responsible for bacterial uptake via interaction with Tet38. We also assessed the ability of S. aureus to survive following alkalinization of the phagolysosomes by chloroquine. Antibody to the scavenger receptor CD36 reduced the internalization of S. aureus RN6390 by A549 cells, but the dependence on CD36 was reduced in QT7 tet38 , suggesting that an interaction between Tet38 and CD36 contributed to S. aureus internalization. Following fusion of the S. aureus -associated endosomes with lysosomes, alkalinization of the acidic environment with chloroquine led to a rapid increase in the number of S. aureus RN6390 bacteria in the cytosol, followed by a decrease shortly thereafter. This effect of chloroquine was not seen in the absence of intact Tet38 in mutant QT7. These data taken together suggest that Tet38 plays a role both in bacterial internalization via interaction with CD36 and in bacterial escape from the phagolysosomes.
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