The role of neisserial Opa proteins in interactions with host cells

Trends Microbiol. 1998 Dec;6(12):489-95. doi: 10.1016/s0966-842x(98)01365-1.


Pathogenic Neisseria spp. possess a repertoire of phase-variable Opa proteins that mediate various pathogen--host cell interactions, including bacterial engulfment by epithelial cells and opsonin-independent phagocytosis by professional phagocytes. Recent studies have identified cellular targets recognized by defined Opa proteins and have begun to reveal host signalling events involved in mediating these Opa-dependent cellular processes.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Antigens, Bacterial / physiology*
  • Antigens, CD / metabolism
  • Antigens, Differentiation / metabolism
  • Cell Adhesion Molecules
  • Epithelial Cells / microbiology
  • Heparan Sulfate Proteoglycans / metabolism
  • Humans
  • Neisseria gonorrhoeae / physiology*
  • Neisseria meningitidis / physiology*


  • Antigens, Bacterial
  • Antigens, CD
  • Antigens, Differentiation
  • CD66 antigens
  • Cell Adhesion Molecules
  • Heparan Sulfate Proteoglycans
  • opacity proteins