A major role for intestinal epithelial nucleotide oligomerization domain 1 (NOD1) in eliciting host bactericidal immune responses to Campylobacter jejuni

Matthias Zilbauer, Nick Dorrell, Abdi Elmi, Keith J. Lindley, Stephanie Schuller, Hannah E. Jones, Nigel J. Klein, Gabriel Núňez, Brendan W. Wren, Mona Bajaj-Elliott

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90 Citations (Scopus)


Campylobacter jejuni is the foremost cause of bacterial-induced diarrhoeal disease worldwide. Although it is well established that C. jejuni infection of intestinal epithelia triggers host innate immune responses, the mechanism(s) involved remain poorly defined. Innate immunity can be initiated by families of structurally related pattern-recognition receptors (PRRs) that recognize specific microbial signature motifs. Here, we demonstrated maximal induction of epithelial innate responses during infection with live C. jejuni cells. In contrast when intestinal epithelial cells (IECs) were exposed to paraformaldehyde-fixed bacteria, host responses were minimal and a marked reduction in the number of intracellular bacteria was noted in parallel. These findings suggested a role for intracellular host–C. jejuni interactions in eliciting early innate immunity. We therefore investigated the potential involvement of a family of intracellular, cytoplasmic PRRs, the nucleotide-binding oligomerization domain (NOD) proteins in C. jejuni recognition. We identified NOD1, but not NOD2, as a major PRR for C. jejuni in IEC. We also found that targeting intestinal epithelial NOD1 with small interfering RNA resulted in an increase in number of intracellular C. jejuni, thus highlighting a critical role for NOD1-mediated antimicrobial defence mechanism(s) in combating this infection at the gastrointestinal mucosal surface.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2404-2416
Number of pages13
JournalCellular Microbiology
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2007

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