We have examined the production of Pseudomonas aeruginosa exotoxin A (ETA) and its role in endogenous bacteremia in mice. Mice given P. aeruginosa D4 orally died of bacteremia between days 10 and 13 following cyclophosphamide- induced leukocytopenia. In this model, serum endotoxin was detected beginning on day 7 by the Limulus assay and P. aeruginosa was cultured from blood beginning on day 9. ETA and tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF) were also detected in serum by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay beginning on day 9. Purified ETA did not stimulate the production of TNF in normal mice primed with a synthetic derivative of muramyl dipeptide in the absence of endotoxin. However, ETA enhanced and primed endotoxin-induced TNF production in mice. The mortality rate of mice given ETA mutant PAO-PR1 (5.0%) was significantly lower than that of mice given the parent strain (78.8%). These data indicate that ETA may be an important factor in the occurrence of P. aeruginosa bacteremia and/or the death of mice. Also, ETA may be responsible for enhancing the production of a lethal dose of TNF in the presence of endotoxin in P. aeruginosa bacteremia.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Infectious Diseases