Publications by authors named "Abdallah Harmache"

10 Publications

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Deciphering the molecular determinants of cholinergic anthelmintic sensitivity in nematodes: When novel functional validation approaches highlight major differences between the model Caenorhabditis elegans and parasitic species.

PLoS Pathog 2018 05 2;14(5):e1006996. Epub 2018 May 2.

ISP, INRA, Université Tours, UMR1282, Nouzilly, France.

Cholinergic agonists such as levamisole and pyrantel are widely used as anthelmintics to treat parasitic nematode infestations. These drugs elicit spastic paralysis by activating acetylcholine receptors (AChRs) expressed in nematode body wall muscles. In the model nematode Caenorhabditis elegans, genetic screens led to the identification of five genes encoding levamisole-sensitive-AChR (L-AChR) subunits: unc-38, unc-63, unc-29, lev-1 and lev-8. These subunits form a functional L-AChR when heterologously expressed in Xenopus laevis oocytes. Here we show that the majority of parasitic species that are sensitive to levamisole lack a gene orthologous to C. elegans lev-8. This raises important questions concerning the properties of the native receptor that constitutes the target for cholinergic anthelmintics. We demonstrate that the closely related ACR-8 subunit from phylogenetically distant animal and plant parasitic nematode species functionally substitutes for LEV-8 in the C. elegans L-AChR when expressed in Xenopus oocytes. The importance of ACR-8 in parasitic nematode sensitivity to cholinergic anthelmintics is reinforced by a 'model hopping' approach in which we demonstrate the ability of ACR-8 from the hematophagous parasitic nematode Haemonchus contortus to fully restore levamisole sensitivity, and to confer high sensitivity to pyrantel, when expressed in the body wall muscle of C. elegans lev-8 null mutants. The critical role of acr-8 to in vivo drug sensitivity is substantiated by the successful demonstration of RNAi gene silencing for Hco-acr-8 which reduced the sensitivity of H. contortus larvae to levamisole. Intriguingly, the pyrantel sensitivity remained unchanged thus providing new evidence for distinct modes of action of these important anthelmintics in parasitic species versus C. elegans. More broadly, this highlights the limits of C. elegans as a predictive model to decipher cholinergic agonist targets from parasitic nematode species and provides key molecular insight to inform the discovery of next generation anthelmintic compounds.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1371/journal.ppat.1006996DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5931475PMC
May 2018

Identification of first-stage dorsal-spined lungworm larvae of Tunisian barbary red deer: First report of Varestrongylus sagittatus and Elaphostrongylus cervi in Africa.

Parasitol Int 2018 Aug 23;67(4):386-388. Epub 2018 Mar 23.

Parasitology Laboratory, National School of Veterinary Medicine, 2020 Sidi Thabet, University of Manouba, Tunisia.

Barbary red deer (Cervus elaphus barbarus) is a protected rare subspecies of red deer. The study of its Protostrongylidae fauna based only on sporadic necropsy of naturally dead animals is difficult. Therefore diagnosis of lungworms rely mainly on the identification of the first stage larvae (L1). The L1 of the different species are not readily diagnosed on morphological basis since much variation is recorded within and among dorsal-spined larvae belonging to various species. The aim of this study was to identify the dorsal-spined lungworm larvae of the Barbary red deer. A discriminant function was established, using the measurements of L1 lungworms recorded from red deer in the literature, then applied to identify 220 dorsal-spined larvae extracted from 25 Tunisian Barbary red deer fresh fecal samples. Also the ITS2 region of rDNA of four pools of larvae (n = 25-60) were amplified, sequenced and analyzed. Using discriminant analysis of morphological traits, Elaphostrongylus cervi and Varestongylus sagittatus were identified. Molecular identification confirmed the presence of E. cervi which is the most prevalent species. This study represents the first identification of V. sagittatus and E. cervi in North Africa.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.parint.2018.03.004DOI Listing
August 2018

Functional Characterization of a Novel Class of Morantel-Sensitive Acetylcholine Receptors in Nematodes.

PLoS Pathog 2015 Dec 1;11(12):e1005267. Epub 2015 Dec 1.

INRA, UMR1282 Infectiologie et Santé Publique, Nouzilly, France.

Acetylcholine receptors are pentameric ligand-gated channels involved in excitatory neuro-transmission in both vertebrates and invertebrates. In nematodes, they represent major targets for cholinergic agonist or antagonist anthelmintic drugs. Despite the large diversity of acetylcholine-receptor subunit genes present in nematodes, only a few receptor subtypes have been characterized so far. Interestingly, parasitic nematodes affecting human or animal health possess two closely related members of this gene family, acr-26 and acr-27 that are essentially absent in free-living or plant parasitic species. Using the pathogenic parasitic nematode of ruminants, Haemonchus contortus, as a model, we found that Hco-ACR-26 and Hco-ACR-27 are co-expressed in body muscle cells. We demonstrated that co-expression of Hco-ACR-26 and Hco-ACR-27 in Xenopus laevis oocytes led to the functional expression of an acetylcholine-receptor highly sensitive to the anthelmintics morantel and pyrantel. Importantly we also reported that ACR-26 and ACR-27, from the distantly related parasitic nematode of horses, Parascaris equorum, also formed a functional acetylcholine-receptor highly sensitive to these two drugs. In Caenorhabditis elegans, a free-living model nematode, we demonstrated that heterologous expression of the H. contortus and P. equorum receptors drastically increased its sensitivity to morantel and pyrantel, mirroring the pharmacological properties observed in Xenopus oocytes. Our results are the first to describe significant molecular determinants of a novel class of nematode body wall muscle AChR.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1371/journal.ppat.1005267DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4666645PMC
December 2015

A virulent bioluminescent and fluorescent dual-reporter Marek's disease virus unveils an alternative spreading pathway in addition to cell-to-cell contact.

J Virol 2014 Oct 16;88(19):11617-23. Epub 2014 Jul 16.

Institut National de la Recherche Agronomique (INRA), Centre Val de Loire, Nouzilly, France Université François Rabelais, UMR1282 Infectiologie et Santé Publique, Tours, France

Marek's disease virus (MDV) is a growing threat for the poultry industry. Unfortunately, despite successful vaccination against the disease, MDV remains in circulation within vaccinated flocks, leading to the selection of increasingly virulent pathotypes. Detailed knowledge of the virus biology and the host-virus interaction is required to improve the vaccine efficiency. In the present study, I engineered an original, dual-reporter MDV to track and quantify virus replication in vitro and in vivo.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1128/JVI.01482-14DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4178790PMC
October 2014

High virulence differences among phylogenetically distinct isolates of the fish rhabdovirus viral hemorrhagic septicaemia virus are not explained by variability of the surface glycoprotein G or the non-virion protein Nv.

J Gen Virol 2014 Feb 4;95(Pt 2):307-316. Epub 2013 Nov 4.

Department of Animal Science, Aarhus University, Aarhus, Denmark.

Viral hemorrhagic septicaemia virus (VHSV) is an important viral pathogen in European rainbow trout farming. Isolates from wild marine fish and freshwater trout farms show highly different virulence profiles: isolates from marine fish species cause little or no mortality in rainbow trout following experimental waterborne challenge, whilst challenge with rainbow trout isolates results in high levels of mortality. Phylogenetic analyses have revealed that the highly virulent trout-derived isolates from freshwater farms have evolved from VHSV isolates from marine fish host species over the past 60 years. Recent isolates from rainbow trout reared in marine zones show intermediate virulence. The present study aimed to identify molecular virulence markers that could be used to classify VHSV isolates according to their ability to cause disease in rainbow trout. By a reverse genetics approach using a VHSV-related novirhabdovirus [infectious hematopoietic necrosis virus (IHNV)], four chimaeric IHNV-VHSV recombinant viruses were generated. These chimaeric viruses included substitution of the IHNV glyco- (G) or non-structural (Nv) protein with their counterparts from either a trout-derived or a marine VHSV strain. Comparative challenge experiments in rainbow trout fingerlings revealed similar levels of survival induced by the recombinant (r)IHNV-VHSV chimaeric viruses regardless of whether the G or Nv genes originated from VHSV isolated from a marine fish species or from rainbow trout. Interestingly, recombinant IHNV gained higher virulence following substitution of the G gene with those of the VHSV strains, whilst the opposite was the case following substitution of the Nv genes.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1099/vir.0.057448-0DOI Listing
February 2014

Staphylococcal-associated molecular patterns enhance expression of immune defense genes induced by IL-17 in mammary epithelial cells.

Cytokine 2011 Dec 17;56(3):749-59. Epub 2011 Oct 17.

INRA, UR1282 Infectiologie Animale et Santé Publique (IASP), F-37380 Nouzilly, France.

Interleukin-17A (IL-17A) and IL-17F have been shown to mediate a crucial crosstalk between the immune system and various epithelial tissues, stimulating various defensive mechanisms to bacterial infections. A number of studies have characterized the response to IL-17A and IL-17F of epithelial cells from airways, intestine, and skin, but not from the mammary gland. To evaluate the potential contribution of IL-17 to the immune defense of the mammary gland, we analyzed the effects of recombinant bovine IL-17A and IL-17F on primary bovine mammary epithelial cells (MEC) by quantitative PCR and ELISA. We found expression (mRNA) of the two components of the IL-17 receptor complex, IL-17RA and IL-17RC, in mammary tissue and MEC in vitro. The expression of a number of genes encoding cytokines, chemokines and proteins endowed with antibacterial activities was increased by IL-17A, and to a lesser extent by IL-17F, but the magnitude of responses was modest. As expected, responses were augmented by the combination of IL-17A or IL-17F with TNF-α. Interestingly, responses of a few of the tested genes, such as IL8, CCL20, iNOS, and CfB, were augmented by the combination of IL-17A with staphylococcal lipoteichoic acid or muramyl dipeptide, bacterial agonists of the innate immune system. This can be interpreted as indicating that IL-17A and IL-17F are tailored to exert their full potential in a septic environment. MEC responses were characterized by the expression of chemokines targeting not only neutrophils (CXCL3 and CXCL8) but also mononuclear leucocytes (CCL2, CCL20). Production of IL-6 was low and the inflammatory cytokines TNF-α and IL-1β were expressed (mRNA) but proteins were not secreted. Altogether, our results suggest that IL-17A and IL-17F have a potential to modulate the mammary gland immune response to mastitis-causing pathogens.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.cyto.2011.09.020DOI Listing
December 2011

A nuclear localization of the infectious haematopoietic necrosis virus NV protein is necessary for optimal viral growth.

PLoS One 2011 21;6(7):e22362. Epub 2011 Jul 21.

Department of Biological Sciences, University of Ulsan, Ulsan, Korea.

The nonvirion (NV) protein of infectious hematopoietic necrosis virus (IHNV) has been previously reported to be essential for efficient growth and pathogenicity of IHNV. However, little is known about the mechanism by which the NV supports the viral growth. In this study, cellular localization of NV and its role in IHNV growth in host cells was investigated. Through transient transfection in RTG-2 cells of NV fused to green fluorescent protein (GFP), a nuclear localization of NV was demonstrated. Deletion analyses showed that the (32)EGDL(35) residues were essential for nuclear localization of NV protein, and fusion of these 4 amino acids to GFP directed its transport to the nucleus. We generated a recombinant IHNV, rIHNV-NV-ΔEGDL in which the (32)EGDL(35) was deleted from the NV. rIHNVs with wild-type NV (rIHNV-NV) or with the NV gene replaced with GFP (rIHNV-ΔNV-GFP) were used as controls. RTG-2 cells infected with rIHNV-ΔNV-GFP and rIHNV-NV-ΔEGDL yielded 12- and 5-fold less infectious virion, respectively, than wild type rIHNV-infected cells at 48 h post-infection (p.i.). While treatment with poly I∶C at 24 h p.i. did not inhibit replication of wild-type rIHNVs, replication rates of rIHNV-ΔNV-GFP and rIHNV-NV-ΔEGDL were inhibited by poly I∶C. In addition, both rIHNV-ΔNV and rIHNV-NV-ΔEGDL induced higher levels of expressions of both IFN1 and Mx1 than wild-type rIHNV. These data suggest that the IHNV NV may support the growth of IHNV through inhibition of the INF system and the amino acid residues of (32)EGDL(35) responsible for nuclear localization are important for the inhibitory activity of NV.
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http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0022362PLOS
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3141031PMC
December 2011

Muramyl dipeptide synergizes with Staphylococcus aureus lipoteichoic acid to recruit neutrophils in the mammary gland and to stimulate mammary epithelial cells.

Clin Vaccine Immunol 2010 Nov 8;17(11):1797-809. Epub 2010 Sep 8.

INRA, UR1282 Infectiologie Animale et Santé Publique (IASP), F-37380 Nouzilly, France.

Staphylococcus aureus, a major pathogen for the mammary gland of dairy ruminants, elicits the recruitment of neutrophils into milk during mastitis, but the mechanisms are incompletely understood. We investigated the response of the bovine mammary gland to muramyl dipeptide (MDP), an elementary constituent of the bacterial peptidoglycan, alone or in combination with lipoteichoic acid (LTA), another staphylococcal microbial-associated molecular pattern (MAMP). MDP induced a prompt and marked influx of neutrophils in milk, and its combination with LTA elicited a more intense and prolonged influx than the responses to either stimulus alone. The concentrations of several chemoattractants for neutrophils (CXCL1, CXCL2, CXCL3, CXCL8, and C5a) increased in milk after challenge, and the highest increases followed challenge with the combination of MDP and LTA. MDP and LTA were also synergistic in inducing in vitro chemokine production by bovine mammary epithelial cells (bMEpC). Nucleotide-binding oligomerization domain 2 (NOD2), a major sensor of MDP, was expressed (mRNA) in bovine mammary tissue and by bMEpC in culture. The production of interleukin-8 (IL-8) following the stimulation of bMEpC by LTA and MDP was dependent on the activation of NF-κB. LTA-induced IL-8 production did not depend on platelet-activating factor receptor (PAFR), as the PAFR antagonist WEB2086 was without effect. In contrast, bMEpC and mammary tissue are known to express Toll-like receptor 2 (TLR2) and to respond to TLR2 agonists. Although the levels of expression of the inflammatory cytokines tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF-α) and IL-1β were increased by LTA and MDP at the mRNA level, no protein could be detected in the bMEpC culture supernatant. The level of induction of IL-6 was low at both the mRNA and protein levels. These results indicate that MDP and LTA exert synergistic effects to induce neutrophilic inflammation in the mammary gland. These results also show that bMEpC could contribute to the inflammatory response by recognizing LTA and MDP and secreting chemokines but not proinflammatory cytokines. Overall, this study indicates that the TLR2 and NOD2 pathways could cooperate to trigger an innate immune response to S. aureus mastitis.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1128/CVI.00268-10DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2976092PMC
November 2010

Bioluminescence imaging of live infected salmonids reveals that the fin bases are the major portal of entry for Novirhabdovirus.

J Virol 2006 Apr;80(7):3655-9

Unité de Virologie et Immunologie Moléculaires, INRA, CRJ Domaine de Vilvert, 78352 Jouy en Josas, France.

Although Novirhabdovirus viruses, like the Infectious hematopietic necrosis virus (IHNV), have been extensively studied, limited knowledge exists on the route of IHNV entry during natural infection. A recombinant IHNV (rIHNV) expressing the Renilla luciferase gene was generated and used to infect trout. A noninvasive bioluminescence assay was developed so that virus replication in live fish could be followed hours after infection. We provide here evidence that the fin bases are the portal of entry into the fish. Confirmation was brought by the use of a nonpathogenic rIHNV, which was shown to persist in fins for 3 weeks postinfection.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1128/JVI.80.7.3655-3659.2006DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1440417PMC
April 2006

Fully functional, naturally occurring and C-terminally truncated variant human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) Vif does not bind to HIV Gag but influences intermediate filament structure.

J Gen Virol 2001 Mar;82(Pt 3):561-573

Forschungsschwerpunkt Angewandte Tumorvirologie, F02001, and Forschungsschwerpunkt Krebsentstehung und Differenzierung, A01002, Deutsches Krebsforschungszentrum, Im Neuenheimer Feld 242, D-69120 Heidelberg, Germany.

A variant human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) vif gene, vifA45-2, which encodes a protein lacking 19 amino acids at the C terminus but which is fully functional in supporting HIV replication in non-permissive cells has been described previously. By employing newly generated anti-VifA45 serum, further properties of VifA45 and its full-length counterpart, VifA45open, in comparison to Vif from HIV strain BH10 are reported in permissive HeLa and COS-7 cells. The results obtained using confocal microscopic localization studies and in vitro binding assays do not support a requirement for the direct interaction of HIV Gag with Vif. Furthermore and in contrast to previous conclusions, detergent solubility analyses do not demonstrate a role for the C terminus of Vif in mediating localization to the fraction containing cellular membrane proteins. Localization of Vif from HIV strain BH10 to perinuclear aggregates in a small fraction (about 10%) of transfected HeLa cells has been previously reported. The intermediate filament protein vimentin colocalizes to these structures. In contrast, VifA45 and VifA45open form perinuclear aggregates in nearly all transfected HeLa cells; vimentin as well as the cytoskeletal-bridging protein plectin, but not the microtubular protein tubulin, become relocalized to these structures. Interestingly, in COS-7 cells, all of the functional Vif proteins tested (Vif from strain BH10, VifA45 and VifA45open) predominantly localize in the cytoplasm but still induce dramatic aggregation of vimentin and plectin, i.e. in these cells the respective Vif proteins are influencing intermediate filament structure in the absence of colocalization.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1099/0022-1317-82-3-561DOI Listing
March 2001