Chemotaxis inhibitory protein of Staphylococcus aureus, a bacterial antiinflammatory agent

J Exp Med. 2004 Mar 1;199(5):687-95. doi: 10.1084/jem.20031636.


Leukocyte migration is a key event both in host defense against invading pathogens as well as in inflammation. Bacteria generate chemoattractants primarily by excretion (formylated peptides), complement activation (C5a), and subsequently through activation of leukocytes (e.g., leukotriene B4, platelet-activating factor, and interleukin 8). Here we describe a new protein secreted by Staphylococcus aureus that specifically impairs the response of neutrophils and monocytes to formylated peptides and C5a. This chemotaxis inhibitory protein of S. aureus (CHIPS) is a 14.1-kD protein encoded on a bacteriophage and is found in >60% of clinical isolates. CHIPS reduces the neutrophil recruitment toward C5a in a mouse peritonitis model, even though its activity is much more potent on human than on mouse cells. These findings suggest a new immune escape mechanism of S. aureus and put forward CHIPS as a potential new antiinflammatory therapeutic compound.

MeSH terms

  • Amino Acid Sequence
  • Animals
  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents, Non-Steroidal / isolation & purification*
  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents, Non-Steroidal / pharmacology*
  • Bacterial Proteins / genetics
  • Bacterial Proteins / isolation & purification*
  • Bacterial Proteins / pharmacology*
  • Base Sequence
  • Chemotaxis, Leukocyte / drug effects*
  • Complement C5a / pharmacology
  • DNA, Bacterial / genetics
  • Genes, Bacterial
  • Humans
  • In Vitro Techniques
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred C57BL
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Neutrophils / drug effects
  • Neutrophils / immunology
  • Species Specificity
  • Staphylococcus aureus / genetics
  • Staphylococcus aureus / immunology*


  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents, Non-Steroidal
  • Bacterial Proteins
  • DNA, Bacterial
  • Complement C5a