Fighting pneumococcal infections: Identification of fitness and virulence factors

Cibio Seminar

14 February 2020
Versione stampabile

Location: Polo F. Ferrari 2, via Sommarive 9  (Povo) – Room B103
Time: 14.00


  • Sven Hammerschmidt - Department of Molecular Genetics and Infection Biology, Interfaculty Institute for Genetics andFunctional Genomics, Center for Functional Genomics of Microbes, University of Greifswald, Germany


Streptococcus pneumoniae isa versatile pathobiont colonizing on the one hand symptomless the respiratorytract of humans, while on the other hand causing severe diseases such aspneumonia, sepsis and meningitis. Pneumococci produce a versatile repertoire ofadhesins and virulence factors to evade the immune defense mechanisms and tofacilitate colonization and invasive diseases as well. However, a prerequisitefor the successful conquest of the host is the pneumococcal ability to adapt tothe conditions of the host niche. This ensures the maintenance of thepneumococcus in various host environments differing in nutrients, temperatureand immune defense mechanisms. The structure-function analysis of pneumococcalfitness and virulence factors provides insight into their biological functionsand role in pneumococcal pathogenesis. Here, pneumococcal proteins involved indifferent pathophysiological processes pivotal for full fitness and survival within the host will be discussed