The relationship between Trichomonas vaginalis, the causative agent of trichomoniasis, and lactobacilli, a group of bacteria commonly found in the vagina, is of significant interest due to its potential implications for vaginal health. It has been shown that T. vaginalis is associated with a vaginal microbiota consisting of low proportions of lactobacilli and high proportions of other mostly anaerobic bacteria. T. vaginalis has been found to efficiently ingest and kill lactobacilli, leading to a reduction in the lactobacilli community associated with trichomoniasis.

Our preliminary studies of proteins that are secreted by T. vaginalis (secretome) upon interaction with Lactobacillus jensenii pointed to several new factors with the potential to cause adverse effects on lactobacilli and to stimulate its phagocytosis.

Objective: To investigate the interactions between T. vaginalis and lactobacilli in vitro, including the ability of T. vaginalis to ingest and kill different lactobacilli species (L. jensenii, L. gasseri, and L. crispatus) and investigate molecular mechanisms of trichomonas-lactobacilli interactions based on results of the preliminary study of T. vaginalis secretome.

Significance: Understanding the interactions between T. vaginalis and lactobacilli may provide insights into the development of targeted therapies for trichomoniasis and implications for vaginal health.

Five relevant publications of the research group:

Zimmann N., Rada P., Žárský V., Smutná T., Záhonová K., Dacks J., Harant K., Hrdý I., Tachezy J. 2022. Proteomic analysis of Trichomonas vaginalis phagolysosome, lysosomal targeting, and unconventional secretion of cysteine peptidases. Mol Cell Proteomics. 21(1):100174. DOI:https://doi.org/10.1016/j.mcpro.2021.100174

Smutná T., Dohnálková A., Sutak R., Narayanasamy R.K., Tachezy J, Hrdý I. 2022. A cytosolic ferredoxin-independent hydrogenase possibly mediates hydrogen uptake in Trichomonas vaginalis. Current Biology, S0960-9822(21)01494-9. doi: 10.1016/j.cub.2021.10.050.

Rada P, Hrdý I, Zdrha A, Narayanasamy R.K., Smutná T., Beneš V, Tang P, and Tachezy J. 2022. Double stranded RNA viruses are released from Trichomonas vaginalis inside exosomes and modulate the exosomal cargo. Frontiers in Microbiology, 13:893692. doi: 10.3389/fmicb.2022.893692.

Narayanasamy R. K., Rada P., Zdrha A., van Ranst M, Neyts J., Tachezy J. 2022. Cytidine nucleoside analog is an effective antiviral drug against Trichomonasvirus. Journal of Microbiology, Immunology and Infection, 55(2):191-198. doi: 10.1016/j.jmii.2021.08.008.

Štáfková J., Rada P., Meloni D., Žárský V., Smutná T., Zimmann N., Harant K., Pompach P., Hrdý I., Tachezy J. 2018. Dynamic secretome of Trichomonas vaginalis: Case study of β-amylases. Molecular and Cellular Proteomics, 2018 Feb;17(2):304-320. doi: 10.1074/mcp.RA117.000434

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