Interactions of Streptococcus mutans fimbria-associated surface proteins with salivary components

Chad A. Ray, Linda E. Gfell, Tiffany L. Buller, Richard L. Gregory

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

13 Scopus citations

Abstract

Streptococcus mutans has been implicated as the major causative agent of human dental caries. S. mutans binds to saliva-coated tooth surfaces, and previous studies suggested that fimbriae may play a role in the initial bacterial adherence to salivary components. The objectives of this study were to establish the ability of an S. mutans fimbria preparation to bind to saliva-coated surfaces and determine the specific salivary components that facilitate binding with fimbriae. Enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) established that the S. mutans fimbria preparation bound to components of whole saliva. Sodium dodecyl sulfate-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis (SDS- PAGE) and Western blot techniques were used to separate components of whole saliva and determine fimbria binding. SDS-PAGE separated 15 major protein bands from saliva samples, and Western blot analysis indicated significant binding of the S. mutans fimbria preparation to a 52-kDa salivary protein. The major fimbria-binding salivary protein was isolated by preparative electrophoresis. The ability of the S. mutans fimbria preparation to bind to the purified salivary protein was confirmed by Western blot analysis and ELISA. Incubation of the purified salivary protein with the S. mutans fimbria preparation significantly neutralized binding of the salivary protein- fimbria complex to saliva-coated surfaces. The salivary protein, whole saliva, and commercial amylase reacted similarly with antiamylase antibody in immunoblots. A purified 65-kDa fimbrial protein was demonstrated to bind to both saliva and amylase. These data indicated that the S. mutans fimbria preparation and a purified fimbrial protein bound to whole-saliva-coated surfaces and that amylase is the major salivary component involved in the binding.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)400-404
Number of pages5
JournalClinical and Diagnostic Laboratory Immunology
Volume6
Issue number3
StatePublished - May 1 1999

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Immunology
  • Clinical Biochemistry
  • Microbiology (medical)

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