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Adhesins are a heterogenous group of cell surface proteins expressed by most bacterial pathogens and commensal microbes. They are essential virulence factors of pathogens that allow specific attachment to host tissue cells as the first step of host cell invasion but also promote colonization of tissues with commensal microbes.

Adhesins account for host specificity and tissue tropism of pathogens by allowing specific interactions with receptors on host cell surfaces. A large number of bacterial adhesins with individual receptor specificities have been identified (Klemm and Schembri, 2000). Some adhesins are known also to function as invasins, which allow pathogens to enter their target cells (Oelschlaeger TA, 2001). The three-dimensional structures of a number of adhesins/invasins show that many are elongated molecules containing ... ... ... ... ... Subscribe to continue reading! ... ...


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