J Vet Sci.  2008 Mar;9(1):1-8. 10.4142/jvs.2008.9.1.1.

Tactics of Mycobacterium avium subsp. paratuberculosis for intracellular survival in mononuclear phagocytes

Affiliations
  • 1Department of Pathobiological Sciences, School of Veterinary Medicine, University of Wisconsin-Madison, Madison, WI 53706, USA. czuprync@svm.vetmed.wisc.edu

Abstract

Johne's disease is a condition that refers to chronic granulomatous enteritis in ruminants. It is believed that survival and replication of Mycobacterium (M.) paratuberculosis in mononuclear phagocytes plays an important role in the pathogenesis of Johne's disease. However, it is not clear how M. paratuberculosis survives for long time periods in mononuclear phagocytes, nor is it clear which factors trigger multiplication of these bacilli and result in the development of Johne's disease. Investigating the intracellular fate of M. paratuberculosis is challenging because of its very slow growth (more than two months to form visible colonies on media). Existing animal models also have limitations. Despite those obstacles, there has been progress in understanding the intracellular survival tactics of M. paratuberculosis and the host response against them. In this review, we compare known aspects of the intracellular survival tactics of M. paratuberculosis with those of other mycobacterial species, and consider possible mycobactericidal mechanisms of mononuclear phagocytes.

Keyword

intracellular; Johne's disease; Mycobacterium avium; Mycobacterium paratuberculosis

MeSH Terms

Animals
Leukocytes, Mononuclear/*microbiology
Mycobacterium avium subsp. paratuberculosis/*physiology
Phagocytes/*microbiology
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