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Mechanism of action of a bacterial anti-inflammatory protein, AimA

Grant number: 18/05658-8
Support type:Scholarships abroad - Research Internship - Doctorate
Effective date (Start): June 29, 2018
Effective date (End): June 28, 2019
Field of knowledge:Biological Sciences - Immunology
Principal Investigator:Niels Olsen Saraiva Câmara
Grantee:Camila Ideli Morales Fenero
Supervisor abroad: Karen Jeanne Guillemin
Home Institution: Instituto de Ciências Biomédicas (ICB). Universidade de São Paulo (USP). São Paulo , SP, Brazil
Local de pesquisa : University of Oregon (UO), United States  
Associated to the scholarship:15/21644-9 - Obesity-induced inflammation, alterations in the microbiota and their effects on the enteric nervous system: study in an experimental model of zebrafish, BP.DR


Gut bacteria have co-evolved to play a mutually beneficial relationship with their hosts by combining a variety of functions that impact the intestinal environment and the host physiology. The disruption of any of these homeostatic mechanisms can lead to an imbalance favoring the growth of more pro-inflammatory bacterial populations to the detriment of regulatory species, a process known as dysbiosis. Pathogenic bacteria are characterized by particular virulence factors that help bacteria to invade the host, cause disease and evade host defenses. Less is known about the regulatory factors produced by mutualistic bacteria, important for maintaining intestinal homeostasis. However, the difficulty of studying bacterial species in situ and the special conditions needed for culturing them, constitutes a challenge to the current research field. For these reasons, the zebrafish larva emerges as an excellent model for the study of host-bacterial symbiosis for characteristics such as high rate of external reproduction, manipulation of animals in a gnotobiotic state and availability of culturable, genetically tractable and genome-sequenced zebrafish microbial isolates. Recent research in our lab identified a protein secreted by zebrafish intestinal Aeromonas, the Aeromonas immune modulator A (AimA). This protein has potent immune modulatory effect but still more studies are needed to reveal the mechanism of action of this protein. Therefore, we propose to determine the immune-modulatory mechanisms of AimA in zebrafish larva that help us to extend the knowledge about microbiota-host mutualism interactions and gain a possible therapy tool for dysbiosis-related disorders.