Gonçalves DS, Ferreira MDS, Liedke SC, Gomes KX, de Oliveira GA, Leão PEL, Cesar GV, Seabra SH, Cortines JR, Casadevall A, Nimrichter L, Domont GB, Junqueira MR, Peralta JM, Guimaraes AJ. Extracellular vesicles and vesicle-free secretome of the protozoa Acanthamoeba castellanii under homeostasis and nutritional stress and their damaging potential to host cells. Virulence. 2018 Dec 31;9(1):818-836.
Acanthamoeba castellanii (Ac) are ubiquitously distributed in nature, and by contaminating medical devices such as heart valves and contact lenses, they cause a broad range of clinical presentations to humans. Although several molecules have been described to play a role in Ac pathogenesis, including parasite host-tissue invasion and escaping of host-defense, little information is available on their mechanisms of secretion. Herein, we describe the molecular components secreted by Ac, under different protein availability conditions to simulate host niches. Ac extracellular vesicles (EVs) were morphologically and biochemically characterized. Dynamic light scattering analysis of Ac EVs identified polydisperse populations, which correlated to electron microscopy measurements. High-performance thin liquid chromatography of Ac EVs identified phospholipids, steryl-esters, sterol and free-fatty acid, the last two also characterized by GC-MS. Secretome composition (EVs and EVs-free supernatants) was also determined and proteins biological functions classified. In peptone-yeast-glucose (PYG) medium, a total of 179 proteins were identified (21 common proteins, 89 exclusive of EVs and 69 in EVs-free supernatant). In glucose alone, 205 proteins were identified (134 in EVs, 14 common and 57 proteins in EVs-free supernatant). From those, stress response, oxidative and protein and amino acid metabolism proteins prevailed. Qualitative differences were observed on carbohydrate metabolism enzymes from Krebs cycle and pentose phosphate shunt. Serine proteases and metalloproteinases predominated. Analysis of the cytotoxicity of Ac EVs (upon uptake) and EVs-free supernatant to epithelial and glioblastoma cells revealed a dose-dependent effect. Therefore, the Ac secretome differs depending on nutrient conditions, and is also likely to vary during infection.