Oceanus Seminar Series | Mónica Serrano | 5 April | 12h



Title: Breakthroughs into the infectious cycle of the human pathogen Clostridium difficile


Name: Mónica Serrano (CIIMAR)



Abstract:  Bacteria that reside in the gastrointestinal tract of healthy humans are essential for our health, sustenance and
well-being. About 50 to 60% of those bacteria have the ability to produce resilient spores, important for the life cycle in
the gut and for host-to-host transmission. While some endospore-forming bacteria that can be found in the intestine are
non-pathogenic, others have evolved to become pathogens that can cause a striking variety of diseases, such as C.
Recently a genomic signature of sporulation within the human intestinal microbiome was identified. Among these
are the products of the spoIIIA operon which forms a channel through which the mother cell feeds the forespore and is a
universal feature of endosporeformers, or the genes coding for the RNA polymerase sigma factors that control gene
expression during sporulation. Importantly, approximately 30% of the signature genes have no known function in
sporulation and code for products with no similarity to known proteins. We have examined the expression and the
function of these signature genes. We report on the identification of a new gene, termed csiA, which is involved
specifically in the control of sporulation initiation in C. difficile. The presence of csiA in a genomic signature for sporulation
in the gut suggests that this gene has an important role in controlling sporulation also in vivo.


Free entrance. Registration mandatory to