Cholesterol and the activity of bacterial toxins

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Cholesterol may affect the activity of microbial toxins in a direct, specific way, or it may exert indirect effects because of its role in membrane fluidity, membrane line tension, and in the stabilization of rafts in the cytoplasmic membrane. The thiol-activated toxins of gram-positive bacteria, and the cytolysin of Vibrio cholerae are presented as examples of specific toxin-cholesterol interaction. Several mechanisms of indirect effects of cholesterol are discussed using examples such as Staphylococcus aureus α-hemolysin, aerolysin, and diphtheria toxin. © 2004 Published by Elsevier B.V. on behalf of the Federation of European Microbiological Societies.




Palmer, M. (2004, September 15). Cholesterol and the activity of bacterial toxins. FEMS Microbiology Letters.

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