Francisco A. Uzal
Other affiliations: Monash University, Clayton campus, Virginia–Maryland Regional College of Veterinary Medicine, University of Georgia ...read more
Bio: Francisco A. Uzal is an academic researcher from University of California, Davis. The author has contributed to research in topics: Clostridium perfringens & Enterotoxemia. The author has an hindex of 44, co-authored 301 publications receiving 6748 citations. Previous affiliations of Francisco A. Uzal include Monash University, Clayton campus & Virginia–Maryland Regional College of Veterinary Medicine.
Papers published on a yearly basis
TL;DR: Two new toxinotypes have been established in the classification of isolates of Clostridium perfringens based on their ability to produce a combination of four typing toxins to divide C. perfringens strains into toxinotypes A to E.
Abstract: Clostridium perfringens causes many different histotoxic and enterotoxic diseases in humans and animals as a result of its ability to produce potent protein toxins, many of which are extracellular. The current scheme for the classification of isolates was finalized in the 1960s and is based on their ability to produce a combination of four typing toxins - α-toxin, β-toxin, e-toxin and ι-toxin – to divide C. perfringens strains into toxinotypes A to E. However, this scheme is now outdated since it does not take into account the discovery of other toxins that have been shown to be required for specific C. perfringens-mediated diseases. We present a long overdue revision of this toxinotyping scheme. The principles for the expansion of the typing system are described, as is a mechanism by which new toxinotypes can be proposed and subsequently approved. Based on these criteria two new toxinotypes have been established. C. perfringens type F consists of isolates that produce C. perfringens enterotoxin (CPE), but not β-toxin, e-toxin or ι-toxin. Type F strains will include strains responsible for C. perfringens-mediated human food poisoning and antibiotic associated diarrhea. C. perfringens type G comprises isolates that produce NetB toxin and thereby cause necrotic enteritis in chickens. There are at least two candidates for future C. perfringens toxinotypes, but further experimental work is required before these toxinotypes can formally be proposed and accepted.
TL;DR: It is established that C. perfringens uses chromosomally encoded alpha toxin and perfringolysin O (a pore-forming toxin) during histotoxic infections and this bacterium causes intestinal disease by employing toxins encoded by mobile genetic elements.
Abstract: Clostridium perfringens uses its arsenal of >16 toxins to cause histotoxic and intestinal infections in humans and animals. It has been unclear why this bacterium produces so many different toxins, especially since many target the plasma membrane of host cells. However, it is now established that C. perfringens uses chromosomally encoded alpha toxin (a phospholipase C) and perfringolysin O (a pore-forming toxin) during histotoxic infections. In contrast, this bacterium causes intestinal disease by employing toxins encoded by mobile genetic elements, including C. perfringens enterotoxin, necrotic enteritis toxin B-like, epsilon toxin and beta toxin. Like perfringolysin O, the toxins with established roles in intestinal disease form membrane pores. However, the intestinal disease-associated toxins vary in their target specificity, when they are produced (sporulation vs vegetative growth), and in their sensitivity to intestinal proteases. Producing many toxins with diverse characteristics likely imparts virulence flexibility to C. perfringens so it can cause an array of diseases.
TL;DR: Isolation of large numbers of C. perfringens type A from intestinal contents, in the absence of other enteric pathogens, is the most reliable criterion on which to base a diagnosis.
Abstract: Clostridium perfringens types A and C and Clostridium difficile are the principal enteric clostridial pathogens of swine. History, clinical signs of disease, and gross and microscopic findings form the basis for a presumptive diagnosis of C. perfringens type-C enteritis. Confirmation is based on isolation of large numbers of type-C C. perfringens and/or detection of beta toxin in intestinal contents. Diagnosis of C. perfringens type-A infection, however, remains controversial, mostly because the condition has not been well defined and because type-A organisms and their most important major (alpha) toxin can be found in intestinal contents of healthy and diseased pigs. Isolation of large numbers of C. perfringens type A from intestinal contents, in the absence of other enteric pathogens, is the most reliable criterion on which to base a diagnosis. Recently, beta2 (CPB2) toxin-producing C. perfringens type A has been linked to disease in piglets and other animals. However, implication of CPB2 in pathogenesis of porcine infections is based principally on isolation of C. perfringens carrying cpb2, the gene encoding CPB2, and the specific role of CPB2 in enteric disease of pigs remains to be fully defined. Clostridium difficile can also be a normal inhabitant of the intestine of healthy pigs, and diagnosis of enteric infection with this microorganism is based on detection of its toxins in feces or intestinal contents.
TL;DR: In this paper, the authors used histopathological examination of brain lesions for diagnosis of type D enterotoxemia, as lesions produced by epsilon toxin in the brains of sheep and goats are pathognomonic for type D. But, although such tests have a presumptive diagnostic value when positive, they cannot be used to rule out a diagnosis of enteroxemia when negative.
Abstract: Clostridium perfringens produces enteric diseases, generically called enterotoxemias, in sheep, goats, and other animals. This microorganism can be a normal inhabitant of the intestine of most animal species, including humans, but when the intestinal environment is altered by sudden changes in diet or other factors, C. perfringens proliferates and produces potent toxins that act locally or are absorbed into the general circulation with usually devastating effects on the host. History, clinical signs, and gross postmortem findings are useful tools for establishing a presumptive diagnosis of clostridial enterotoxemia in sheep and goats. Definitive diagnosis requires laboratory confirmation. Isolation of some types of C. perfringens (e.g., B and C) can be of diagnostic value, but other types (e.g., A) are so commonly found in the intestine of normal animals that isolation is meaningless from a diagnostic point of view. The most accepted criterion in establishing a definitive diagnosis of enterotoxemia is detection of C. perfringens toxins in intestinal contents. Also, histopathological examination of brain is very useful for diagnosis of type D disease, as lesions produced by epsilon toxin in the brains of sheep and goats are pathognomonic for type D enterotoxemia. Ancillary tests, such as measuring urine glucose or observing Gram-stained smears of intestinal mucosa, can be used. However, although such tests have a presumptive diagnostic value when positive, they cannot be used to rule out a diagnosis of enterotoxemia when negative.
TL;DR: The presence of toxin genes on conjugative plasmids, particularly in association with insertion sequences that may mobilize these toxin genes, likely provides C. perfringens with considerable virulence plasticity and adaptability when it causes diseases originating in the gastrointestinal tract.
Abstract: In both humans and animals, Clostridium perfringens is an important cause of histotoxic infections and diseases originating in the intestines, such as enteritis and enterotoxemia. The virulence of this Gram-positive, anaerobic bacterium is heavily dependent upon its prolific toxin-producing ability. Many of the ∼16 toxins produced by C. perfringens are encoded by large plasmids that range in size from ∼45 kb to ∼140 kb. These plasmid-encoded toxins are often closely associated with mobile elements. A C. perfringens strain can carry up to three different toxin plasmids, with a single plasmid carrying up to three distinct toxin genes. Molecular Koch's postulate analyses have established the importance of several plasmid-encoded toxins when C. perfringens disease strains cause enteritis or enterotoxemias. Many toxin plasmids are closely related, suggesting a common evolutionary origin. In particular, most toxin plasmids and some antibiotic resistance plasmids of C. perfringens share an ∼35-kb region containing a Tn916-related conjugation locus named tcp (transfer of clostridial plasmids). This tcp locus can mediate highly efficient conjugative transfer of these toxin or resistance plasmids. For example, conjugative transfer of a toxin plasmid from an infecting strain to C. perfringens normal intestinal flora strains may help to amplify and prolong an infection. Therefore, the presence of toxin genes on conjugative plasmids, particularly in association with insertion sequences that may mobilize these toxin genes, likely provides C. perfringens with considerable virulence plasticity and adaptability when it causes diseases originating in the gastrointestinal tract.
01 Jun 2012
TL;DR: SPAdes as mentioned in this paper is a new assembler for both single-cell and standard (multicell) assembly, and demonstrate that it improves on the recently released E+V-SC assembler and on popular assemblers Velvet and SoapDeNovo (for multicell data).
Abstract: The lion's share of bacteria in various environments cannot be cloned in the laboratory and thus cannot be sequenced using existing technologies. A major goal of single-cell genomics is to complement gene-centric metagenomic data with whole-genome assemblies of uncultivated organisms. Assembly of single-cell data is challenging because of highly non-uniform read coverage as well as elevated levels of sequencing errors and chimeric reads. We describe SPAdes, a new assembler for both single-cell and standard (multicell) assembly, and demonstrate that it improves on the recently released E+V-SC assembler (specialized for single-cell data) and on popular assemblers Velvet and SoapDeNovo (for multicell data). SPAdes generates single-cell assemblies, providing information about genomes of uncultivatable bacteria that vastly exceeds what may be obtained via traditional metagenomics studies. SPAdes is available online ( http://bioinf.spbau.ru/spades ). It is distributed as open source software.
Katholieke Universiteit Leuven1, Oslo University Hospital2, University of Pennsylvania3, University of Rochester4, Medical College of Wisconsin5, Roswell Park Cancer Institute6, Harvard University7, Massachusetts Institute of Technology8, Wayne State University9, University of British Columbia10, University of Oslo11, Medical University of Warsaw12, University of Liège13, University of Toronto14, Polish Academy of Sciences15
TL;DR: The photodynamic therapy (PDT) is a clinically approved, minimally invasive therapeutic procedure that can exert a selective cytotoxic activity toward malignant cells as discussed by the authors, which can prolong survival in patients with inoperable cancers and significantly improve quality of life.
Abstract: Photodynamic therapy (PDT) is a clinically approved, minimally invasive therapeutic procedure that can exert a selective cytotoxic activity toward malignant cells. The procedure involves administration of a photosensitizing agent followed by irradiation at a wavelength corresponding to an absorbance band of the sensitizer. In the presence of oxygen, a series of events lead to direct tumor cell death, damage to the microvasculature, and induction of a local inflammatory reaction. Clinical studies revealed that PDT can be curative, particularly in early stage tumors. It can prolong survival in patients with inoperable cancers and significantly improve quality of life. Minimal normal tissue toxicity, negligible systemic effects, greatly reduced long-term morbidity, lack of intrinsic or acquired resistance mechanisms, and excellent cosmetic as well as organ function-sparing effects of this treatment make it a valuable therapeutic option for combination treatments. With a number of recent technological improvements, PDT has the potential to become integrated into the mainstream of cancer treatment. CA Cancer J Clin 2011;61:250-281. V C
TL;DR: Experimental NeurologyBy Prof. Paul Glees.
Abstract: Experimental Neurology By Prof Paul Glees Pp xii + 532 (Oxford: Clarendon Press; London: Oxford University Press, 1961) 75s net
25 Nov 2014
TL;DR: The most recent version of the OIE Manual of Diagnostic Tests and Vaccines for Terrestrial Animals (the Terrestrial Manual) is online: http://www.oie.int/en/international...
Abstract: The most recent version of the OIE Manual of Diagnostic Tests and Vaccines for Terrestrial Animals (the Terrestrial Manual) is online: http://www.oie.int/en/international...
TL;DR: What is known of these free-living amoebae is summarized, focusing on their biology, ecology, types of disease and diagnostic methods, including clinical profiles, mechanisms of pathogenesis, pathophysiology, immunology, antimicrobial sensitivity and molecular characteristics.
Abstract: Among the many genera of free-living amoebae that exist in nature, members of only four genera have an association with human disease: Acanthamoeba spp., Balamuthia mandrillaris, Naegleria fowleri and Sappinia diploidea. Acanthamoeba spp. and B. mandrillaris are opportunistic pathogens causing infections of the central nervous system, lungs, sinuses and skin, mostly in immunocompromised humans. Balamuthia is also associated with disease in immunocompetent children, and Acanthamoeba spp. cause a sight-threatening infection, Acanthamoeba keratitis, mostly in contact-lens wearers. Of more than 30 species of Naegleria, only one species, N. fowleri, causes an acute and fulminating meningoencephalitis in immunocompetent children and young adults. In addition to human infections, Acanthamoeba, Balamuthia and Naegleria can cause central nervous system infections in animals. Because only one human case of encephalitis caused by Sappinia diploidea is known, generalizations about the organism as an agent of disease are premature. In this review we summarize what is known of these free-living amoebae, focusing on their biology, ecology, types of disease and diagnostic methods. We also discuss the clinical profiles, mechanisms of pathogenesis, pathophysiology, immunology, antimicrobial sensitivity and molecular characteristics of these amoebae.