Lipid acquisition by intracellular Chlamydiae

Authors

  • Cherilyn A. Elwell,

    Corresponding author
    1. Departments of Medicine
    2. Microbial Pathogenesis and Host Defense Program, University of California, San Francisco, CA, USA.
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  • Joanne N. Engel

    1. Departments of Medicine
    2. Microbiology and Immunology
    3. Microbial Pathogenesis and Host Defense Program, University of California, San Francisco, CA, USA.
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E-mail cherilyn.elwell@ucsf.edu; Tel. (+1) 415 476 3433; Fax (+1) 415 476 9364.

Summary

Chlamydia species are obligate intracellular pathogens that are important causes of human genital tract, ocular and respiratory infections. The bacteria replicate within a specialized membrane-bound compartment termed the inclusion and require host-derived lipids for intracellular growth and development. Emerging evidence indicates that Chlamydia has evolved clever strategies to fulfil its lipid needs by interacting with multiple host cell compartments and redirecting trafficking pathways to its intracellular niche. In this review, we highlight recent findings that have significantly expanded our understanding of how Chlamydia exploit lipid trafficking pathways to ensure the survival of this important human pathogen.

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