Projects / Programmes source: ARIS

Proteomic and aptamer-based approaches for study of host-pathogen interactions in staphylococcal and clostridial infections

Research activity

Code Science Field Subfield
3.01.00  Medical sciences  Microbiology and immunology   

Code Science Field
B230  Biomedical sciences  Microbiology, bacteriology, virology, mycology 

Code Science Field
3.01  Medical and Health Sciences  Basic medicine 
Clostridium difficile, Staphylococcus aureus, aptamers, mass spectroscopy, virulence
Evaluation (rules)
source: COBISS
Researchers (20)
no. Code Name and surname Research area Role Period No. of publicationsNo. of publications
1.  29489  PhD Mirjana Bistan Žist  Microbiology and immunology  Researcher  2013  52 
2.  11130  PhD Sašo Džeroski  Computer science and informatics  Researcher  2013 - 2016  1,204 
3.  18801  PhD Marko Fonović  Biochemistry and molecular biology  Researcher  2013  187 
4.  18284  PhD Katja Galeša  Biochemistry and molecular biology  Researcher  2013  39 
5.  33406  PhD Nikolaja Janež  Biochemistry and molecular biology  Researcher  2015 - 2016  84 
6.  22312  PhD Gregor Kosec  Biotechnology  Researcher  2013 - 2016  127 
7.  23483  PhD Enej Kuščer  Biotechnology  Researcher  2013 - 2016  37 
8.  24975  PhD Damjan Makuc  Chemistry  Researcher  2013 - 2015  132 
9.  21244  PhD Jan Mavri  Materials science and technology  Researcher  2014  58 
10.  35029  PhD Tina Mikuletič  Microbiology and immunology  Researcher  2014  59 
11.  13542  PhD Hrvoje Petković  Biotechnology  Researcher  2013 - 2014  301 
12.  10082  PhD Janez Plavec  Chemistry  Researcher  2013 - 2016  1,262 
13.  34212  PhD Jelena Rajković  Biochemistry and molecular biology  Researcher  2014 - 2016  21 
14.  12278  PhD Maja Rupnik  Microbiology and immunology  Head  2013 - 2016  686 
15.  13301  PhD Franc Strle  Microbiology and immunology  Researcher  2013 - 2014  845 
16.  22575  PhD Primož Šket  Chemistry  Researcher  2016  218 
17.  25593  PhD Tina Šmuc  Metabolic and hormonal disorders  Researcher  2013  57 
18.  07561  PhD Boris Turk  Biochemistry and molecular biology  Researcher  2013 - 2016  1,037 
19.  37945  Jasmina Tušar  Biochemistry and molecular biology  Researcher  2015 - 2016  10 
20.  37161  Tanja Vrabič  Microbiology and immunology  Researcher  2014 - 2016 
Organisations (4)
no. Code Research organisation City Registration number No. of publicationsNo. of publications
1.  2592  ACIES BIO, biotehnološke raziskave in razvoj, d.o.o. (Slovene)  Ljubljana  2226391  401 
2.  2990  Center of excellence for integrated approaches in chemistry and biology of proteins, Ljubljana  Ljubljana  3663388  725 
3.  2992  EN-FIST CENTRE OF EXCELLENCE  Ljubljana  3664830  2,846 
4.  3030  Center of Excellence for Biosensors, Instrumentation and process Control  Ajdovščina  3660460  294 
Clostridium difficile and Staphylococcus aureus, both important pathogens causing significant burden in health care system, will be used as model organisms to study microbial factors that might be associated with increased virulence. Different approaches will be used to define differences between clinical isolates with higher and lower virulence, defined as S. aureus causing endocarditis-associated vs. bacteremia and C. difficile causing diarrhoea vs. colitis or pseudomembranous colitis. Comparative analysis of secreted factors and bacterial cell wall bound fractions in each bacterial species grown under different conditions will be assessed by mass spectrometry-based proteomic approaches. NMR will be used as a complementary technique to study the possible differences in selected virulence factors due to posttranslational modifications. Aptamers are in vitro engineered nucleic acids selected from complex libraries of synthetic nucleic acid by an iterative process called SELEX. They can be generated against functional groups, small molecules (e.g. amino acids, proteins) and even whole organisms (e.g. bacterial cell). Development of aptamer-based assay for detection of differences between strains associated with mild or severe disease will be another approach used in this project.
Significance for science
The results contributed to understanding of virulence potential of two important human pathogens, C. difficile and S. aureus in terms of properties important for endemicity, colonization and development of disease symptoms. We have shown that subinhibitory concentrations of antimicrobials could affect some of these properties. Additionally, the project has contributed to development of approaches for detection of C. difficile spores by specific aptamers.
Significance for the country
In this project three Centres of Excellence and SME have participated and this has enabled complementation in knowledge and technology and establishment or development of different scientific areas at national level. Also several early researchers were included in the project. Some of the developed methodologies and obtained results (aptamers) have potential for use in development of diagnostic approaches. Project consortium members were presenting the results at national and international scientific meetings and workshops.
Most important scientific results Annual report 2013, 2014, 2015, final report
Most important socioeconomically and culturally relevant results Annual report 2013, 2014, 2015, final report
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