Involvement of SipA in modulating actin dynamics during Salmonella invasion into cultured epithelial cells

Cell Microbiol. 2002 Jun;4(6):357-65. doi: 10.1046/j.1462-5822.2002.00196.x.


Salmonella entry into epithelial host cells results from the host actin cytoskeleton reorganization that is induced by a group of bacterial proteins delivered to the host cells by the Salmonella type III secretion system. SopE, SopE2 and SopB activate CDC42 and Rac1 to intercept the signal transduction pathways involved in actin cytoskeleton rearrangements. SipA and SipC directly bind actin to modulate the actin dynamics facilitating bacterial entry. Biochemical studies have indicated that SipA decreases the critical concentration for actin polymerization and may be involved in promoting the initial actin polymerization in Salmonella-induced actin reorganization. In this report, we conducted experiments to analyze the in vivo function(s) of SipA during Salmonella invasion. SipA was found to be preferentially associated with peripheral cortical actin filaments but not stress fibres using permeabilized epithelial cells. When polarized Caco-2 cells were infected with Salmonella, actin cytoskeleton rearrangements induced by the wild-type strain had many filopodia structures that were intimately associated with the bacteria. In contrast, ruffles induced by the sipA null mutant were smoother and distant from the bacteria. We also found that the F-actin content in cells infected with the sipA mutant decreased nearly 80% as compared to uninfected cells or those infected with the wild-type Salmonella strain. Furthermore, expression of either the full-length or the SipA(459-684) actin-binding fragment induced prominent punctuate actin assembly in the cortical region of COS-1 cells. These results indicate that SipA is involved in modulating actin dynamics in cultured epithelial cells during Salmonella invasion.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Actin Cytoskeleton / metabolism*
  • Actins / metabolism
  • Animals
  • Bacterial Proteins*
  • COS Cells
  • Caco-2 Cells
  • Cytoskeleton / metabolism
  • Epithelium / metabolism
  • Epithelium / microbiology*
  • Humans
  • Microfilament Proteins / metabolism*
  • Mutation
  • Salmonella enterica / growth & development
  • Salmonella enterica / metabolism
  • Salmonella enterica / pathogenicity*


  • Actins
  • Bacterial Proteins
  • Microfilament Proteins
  • SipA protein, Salmonella