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Systems Biology of Cell Infection by the Bacterial Pathogen Listeria monocytogenes

In the context of the Swiss consortium InfectX (, Javier PIZARRO-CERDA previously performed siRNA, microRNA, drug screens and proteomic analyses to investigate signaling pathways modulating invasion of host cells by the bacterial pathogen Listeria monocytogenes. In a first consortium study, based on results from drug and siRNA screens targeting the human kinome, we identified major kinases which up- or down-regulate cell invasion by L. monocytogenes and by 7 additional bacterial and viral pathogens (Rämö et al. 2014). Subsequently, a siRNA genome-wide screen allowed us to revisit and redefine the role of cytoskeletal complexes required for L. monocytogenes cellular invasion and actin-based motility (Kühbacher et al. 2015). Applying a proteomic ‘surfaceome’ analysis, we also revealed that late endosomal compartments are recruited to L. monocytogenes infection foci to promote invasion (Kühbacher et al. Submitted). More recently, we have started the analysis of a microRNA screen which highlights novel gene clusters associated to regulation of phosphoinositide metabolism during L. monocytogenes cell entry (Kühbacher et al. Unpublished Results). These different projects have generated vast amounts of data that have been until now only independently analyzed. However, this information can now be exploited from a systems biology perspective to identify hidden connections between relevant signaling cascades and gene networks which may highlight novel cellular functions exploited by pathogens in the context of infection. The team of Benno SCHWIKOWSKI will perform two types of analysis on the data generated by Javier PIZARRO-CERDA. In both cases, p-values will be aggregated across gene sets using suitable statistical approaches. We will then

  • Pathway-based analysis. This type of analysis considers genes in sets that have been recognized to operate together to perform certain biological functions (e.g.,

Project status : In Progress