In Thailand, diabetes mellitus is the most significant risk factor for melioidosis, a severe disease caused by Burkholderia pseudomallei. In this study, neutrophils isolated from healthy or diabetic subjects were infected with B. thailandensis E555, a variant strain with a B. pseudomallei-like capsular polysaccharide used here as a surrogate micro-organism for B. pseudomallei. At 2 h post-infection, neutrophil proteins were subjected to 4-plex iTRAQ-based comparative proteomic analysis. A total of 341 proteins were identified in two or more samples, of which several proteins involved in oxidative stress and inflammation were enriched in infected diabetic neutrophils. We validated this finding by demonstrating that infected diabetic neutrophils generated significantly elevated levels of pro-inflammatory cytokines TNFα, IL-6, IL-1β, and IL-17 compared to healthy neutrophils. Our data also revealed that infected neutrophils from healthy or diabetic individuals undergo apoptotic cell death at distinctly different rates, with infected diabetic neutrophils showing a diminished ability to delay apoptosis and an increased likelihood of undergoing a lytic form of cell death, compared to infected neutrophils from healthy individuals. Increased expression of inflammatory proteins by infected neutrophils could contribute to the increased susceptibility to infection and inflammation in diabetic patients in melioidosis-endemic areas.
- diabetes mellitus
- Burkholderia thailandensis