Gp96 expression in neutrophils is critical for the onset of Escherichia coli K1 (RS218) meningitis

Rahul Mittal, Nemani V. Prasadarao

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

24 Scopus citations


Despite the fundamental function of neutrophils (polymorphonuclear leukocytes (PMNs)) in innate immunity, their role in Escherichia coli K1 (EC-K1) -induced meningitis is unexplored. Here we show that PMN-depleted mice are resistant to EC-K1 (RS218) meningitis. EC-K1 survives and multiplies in PMNs for which outer membrane protein A (OmpA) expression is essential. EC-K1 infection of PMNs increases the cell surface expression of gp96, which acts as a receptor for bacterial entry. Suppression of gp96 expression in newborn mice prevents the onset of EC-K1 meningitis. Infection of PMNs with EC-K1 suppresses oxidative burst by downregulating rac1, rac2 and gp91 phox transcription both in vitro and in vivo. The interaction of loop 2 of OmpA with gp96 is essential for EC-K1-mediated inhibition of oxidative burst. These results reveal that EC-K1 exploits surface-expressed gp96 in PMNs to prevent oxidative burst for the onset of neonatal meningitis.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number552
JournalNature communications
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2011
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Chemistry(all)
  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Physics and Astronomy(all)


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