SEEK: Salford Environment for Expertise and Knowledge

Journal Article (Refereed)
January 2012

Molecular basis of early epithelial response to streptococcal exotoxin: role of STIM1 and Orai1 proteins

Miklavc, P & Usmani, S & Einem, J V & Frick, M & Mayenburg, M & Husmann, M & Dietl, P & Wittekindt, O 2012, 'Molecular basis of early epithelial response to streptococcal exotoxin: role of STIM1 and Orai1 proteins', Cell Microbiol, 14(3), pp.299-315.


Streptolysin O (SLO) is a cholesterol-dependent cytolysin (CDC) from Streptococcus pyogenes. SLO induces diverse types of Ca(2+) signalling in host cells which play a key role in membrane repair and cell fate determination. The mechanisms behind SLO-induced Ca(2+) signalling remain poorly understood. Here, we show that in NCI-H441 cells, wild-type SLO as well as non-pore-forming mutant induces long-lasting intracellular Ca(2+) oscillations via IP(3) -mediated depletion of intracellular stores and activation of store-operated Ca(2+) (SOC) entry. SLO-induced activation of SOC entry was confirmed by Ca(2+) add-back experiments, pharmacologically and by overexpression as well as silencing of STIM1 and Orai1 expression. SLO also activated SOC entry in primary cultivated alveolar type II (ATII) cells but Ca(2+) oscillations were comparatively short-lived in nature. Comparison of STIM1 and Orai1 revealed a differential expression pattern in H441 and ATII cells. Overexpression of STIM1 and Orai1 proteins in ATII cells changed the short-lived oscillatory response into a long-lived one. Thus, we conclude that SLO-mediated Ca(2+) signalling involves Ca(2+) release from intracellular stores and STIM1/Orai1-dependent SOC entry. The phenotype of Ca(2+) signalling depends on STIM1 and Orai1 expression levels. Our findings suggest a new role for SOC entry-associated proteins in S. pyogenes-induced lung infection and pneumonia.


SEEK Members

External Authors

OH Wittekindt

M Mayenburg

M Frick

P Dietl

M Husmann

J von Einem

SM Usmani

Publication Details

Journal Name
Cell Microbiol