DBSecSys 2.0: a database of Burkholderia mallei and Burkholderia pseudomallei secretion systems

BMC Bioinformatics. 2016 Sep 20:17:387. doi: 10.1186/s12859-016-1242-z.


Background: Burkholderia mallei and B. pseudomallei are the causative agents of glanders and melioidosis, respectively, diseases with high morbidity and mortality rates. B. mallei and B. pseudomallei are closely related genetically; B. mallei evolved from an ancestral strain of B. pseudomallei by genome reduction and adaptation to an obligate intracellular lifestyle. Although these two bacteria cause different diseases, they share multiple virulence factors, including bacterial secretion systems, which represent key components of bacterial pathogenicity. Despite recent progress, the secretion system proteins for B. mallei and B. pseudomallei, their pathogenic mechanisms of action, and host factors are not well characterized.

Results: We previously developed a manually curated database, DBSecSys, of bacterial secretion system proteins for B. mallei. Here, we report an expansion of the database with corresponding information about B. pseudomallei. DBSecSys 2.0 contains comprehensive literature-based and computationally derived information about B. mallei ATCC 23344 and literature-based and computationally derived information about B. pseudomallei K96243. The database contains updated information for 163 B. mallei proteins from the previous database and 61 additional B. mallei proteins, and new information for 281 B. pseudomallei proteins associated with 5 secretion systems, their 1,633 human- and murine-interacting targets, and 2,400 host-B. mallei interactions and 2,286 host-B. pseudomallei interactions. The database also includes information about 13 pathogenic mechanisms of action for B. mallei and B. pseudomallei secretion system proteins inferred from the available literature or computationally. Additionally, DBSecSys 2.0 provides details about 82 virulence attenuation experiments for 52 B. mallei secretion system proteins and 98 virulence attenuation experiments for 61 B. pseudomallei secretion system proteins. We updated the Web interface and data access layer to speed-up users' search of detailed information for orthologous proteins related to secretion systems of the two pathogens.

Conclusions: The updates of DBSecSys 2.0 provide unique capabilities to access comprehensive information about secretion systems of B. mallei and B. pseudomallei. They enable studies and comparisons of corresponding proteins of these two closely related pathogens and their host-interacting partners. The database is available at http://dbsecsys.bhsai.org .

Keywords: Bacterial secretion system; Burkholderia mallei; Burkholderia pseudomallei; Host-pathogen interactions; Pathogenic mechanisms of action; Virulence factors.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Bacterial Proteins / genetics
  • Bacterial Proteins / metabolism*
  • Bacterial Secretion Systems / genetics
  • Bacterial Secretion Systems / metabolism*
  • Burkholderia mallei / genetics
  • Burkholderia mallei / metabolism
  • Burkholderia mallei / pathogenicity*
  • Burkholderia pseudomallei / genetics
  • Burkholderia pseudomallei / metabolism
  • Burkholderia pseudomallei / pathogenicity*
  • Databases, Protein*
  • Humans
  • Mice
  • Virulence Factors / genetics
  • Virulence Factors / metabolism


  • Bacterial Proteins
  • Bacterial Secretion Systems
  • Virulence Factors