Adhesion and Colonization

Soman N. Abraham, Nathan Sharon, Itzhak Ofek, Joseph D. Schwartzman

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review


The binding of bacterial adhesins to host receptors is a dynamic process occurring in several steps, which involve complex bacteria-host cell interaction. Initial weak physical interactions lead to more specific adhesion mechanisms that may be shared by several organisms, but eventually to species-specific adhesins that may elicit both bacterial and host factors leading to host cell damage, induction of inflammation and disease. Species-specific fimbrial adhesins may be viewed as direct mediators of bidirectional signalling between bacteria and host cells. Understanding of this process has been highly informative for the design of novel strategies to modulate these signalling pathways and to curb bacterial infections and their harmful sequelae. Development of mixtures of inhibitors or a polyvalent inhibitor is under investigation, since many infectious agents express multiple specificities. Multiple molecular mechanisms of adhesion are required to initiate infection, and effective anti-adhesion strategies will need to address both bacterial and host site particularities.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationMolecular Medical Microbiology
Number of pages13
ISBN (Electronic)9780123971692
ISBN (Print)9780123977632
StatePublished - 1 Jan 2014


  • Adhesins
  • Adhesion
  • Colonization
  • Escherichia coli
  • Fimbriae
  • Glycoconjugate
  • Klebsiella pneumoniae
  • Lectin
  • Lipopolysaccharide
  • Neisseria meningitidis
  • Pili


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