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Comparative proteomic analysis of vancomycin-sensitive and vancomycin-intermediate resistant Staphylococcus aureus.

PURPOSE: The extensive use of vancomycin has led to the development of Staphylococcus aureus strains with varying degrees of resistance to vancomycin. The present study aimed to explore the molecular causes of vancomycin resistance by conducting a proteomics analysis of subcellular fractions isolated from vancomycin-intermediate resistant S. aureus (VISA) and vancomycin-sensitive S. aureus (VSSA) strains.

METHODS: We conducted proteomics analysis of subcellular fractions isolated from 2 isogenic S. aureus strains: strain 11 (VSSA) and strain 11Y (VISA). We used an integrated quantitative proteomics approach assisted by bioinformatics analysis, and comprehensively investigated the proteome profile. Intensive bioinformatics analysis, including protein annotation, functional classification, functional enrichment, and functional enrichment-based cluster analysis, was used to annotate quantifiable targets.

RESULTS: We identified 128 upregulated proteins and 21 downregulated proteins in strain 11Y as compared to strain 11. The largest group of differentially expressed proteins was composed of enzymatic proteins associated with metabolic and catalytic activity, which accounted for 32.1% and 50% of the total proteins, respectively. Some proteins were indispensable parts of the regulatory networks of S. aureus that were altered with vancomycin treatment, and these proteins were related to cell wall metabolism, cell adhesion, proteolysis, and pressure response.

CONCLUSION: Our proteomics study revealed regulatory proteins associated with vancomycin resistance in S. aureus. Some of these proteins were involved in the regulation of cell metabolism and function, which provides potential targets for the development of strategies to manage vancomycin resistance in S. aureus.

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