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Listeria monocytogenes

Listeria monocytogenes (Lm) is a gram-positive intracellular, food-borne human pathogen and an important public health problem. Because Lm is genetically tractable, has a well-characterized infection cycle, and has in vitro and in vivo models of infection, it is an ideal organism to study the fundamental aspects of intracellular pathogenesis and the host innate immune response to cytosolic invasion.

Cellular infection by Lm results in bacterial entry into the cytoplasm of the host cell followed by replication of the bacteria. Lm hijacks host cell actin as a means of generating bacterial motility, which allows bacterial translocation into neighboring cells without the need of leaving the confines of the intracellular niche. How Lm adapts to the nutrients of the cytosol and efficiently counteracts/evades the host cell-intrinsic mechanisms of bacterial clearance are central to the investigation of the Woodward lab.

L. monocytogenes infecting murine hepatocytes and spreading by actin based motility.

A L. monocytogenes focus of infection in a monolayer of murine hepatocytes. Actin and DNA.


Huynh, T.N., Choi, P., Sureka, K., Ledvina, H.E., Campillo, J., Tong, L.*, Woodward, J.J.* Cyclic di-AMP targets the cystathionine beta-synthase domain of the osmolyte transporter OpuC. Mol Microbiol. 2016 Jul 5.


Camargo AC, Woodward JJ, Nero LA. The Continuous Challenge of Characterizing the Foodborne Pathogen Listeria monocytogenes. Foodborne Pathog Dis. 2016 Apr 27.


Huynh TN, Woodward JJ. Too Much of a Good Thing: Regulated depletion of c-di-AMP in the bacterial cytoplasm. Current Opinion in Microbiology. April 2016: Vol. 30, 22-29.

Choi, P.H., Sureka, K., Woodward, J.J.*, Tong, L.* Molecular basis for the recognition of cyclic-di-AMP by PstA, a PII-like signal transduction protein. Microbiologyopen. 2015


Huynh, T.N., Luo, S., Pensinger, D., Sauer, J.D., Tong, L.*, Woodward, J.J.* An HD-domain phosphodiesterase mediates cooperative hydrolysis of c-di-AMP to affect bacterial growth and virulence. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA. 2014.


Sureka, K., Choi, P.H., Precit, M., Delince, M., Pensinger, D., Huynh, T.N., Jurado, A.R., Goo, Y.A., Sadilek, M., Iavarone A.T., Sauer, J.D., Tong, L.*, Woodward, J.J.* The cyclic dinucleotide c-di-AMP is an allosteric regulator of metabolic enzyme function. Cell (2014). Volume 158, Issue 6, p1389–1401, 11 September 2014

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