Caister Academic Press

Bacterial Escape from the Complement System

Marta Biedzka-Sarek and Mikael Skurnik
from: Bacterial Pathogenesis: Molecular and Cellular Mechanisms (Edited by: Camille Locht and Michel Simonet). Caister Academic Press, U.K. (2012)


Bacterial infections represent a global health problem. To establish infection bacteria need to defeat the action of the non-specific immune system machinery. Its essential component, activated immediately upon pathogen entry, is the complement system. Complement activation (through the classical, the lectin, and the alternative pathways) tags microbes for destruction by phagocytic cells, causes microbial lysis, and leads to generation of downstream proinflammatory responses. Moreover, vaccination or pre-exposure to a given microbe is not required for the complement system to eliminate the intruder. Many bacteria have, however, developed strategies to evade the complement system. Investigating these processes should further our understanding of host-bacterium interactions and contribute to prevention and treatment of bacterial infections read more ...
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