Author(s): Scheiblauer H, Reinacher M, Tashiro M, Rott R
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Abstract Different proteases from various microorganisms present in the respiratory tract were capable of enhancing influenza virus infectivity and pathogenicity in mice by proteolytic activation of hemagglutinin (HA). Aerococcus viridans, isolated from a patient with pneumonia, secreted a protease that could activate HA directly, similarly to some Staphylococcus aureus strains. The protease of Pseudomonas aeruginosa could not activate HA directly, but combined application of P. aeruginosa protease and virus into mice enhanced virus titers and pathogenicity. Generation of trypsin-like activity in bronchoalveolar lavage fluids resulting from this combination treatment may be responsible for HA activation. A similar indirect effect on HA activation was induced by streptokinase and staphylokinase, which are known to generate plasmin by plasminogen activation. It was concluded that plasminogen-activating streptococci and staphylococci facilitate viral replication and pathogenicity of plasmin-sensitive influenza virus strains by amplification of the plasminogen/plasmin system.
This article was published in J Infect Dis
and referenced in Journal of Pulmonary & Respiratory Medicine