L-selectin and E-selectin expressed on monocytes mediating Ehrlichia chaffeensis attachment onto host cells

Jian Zhi Zhang, Jere W. McBride, Xue Jie Yu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

15 Scopus citations


Ehrlichia chaffeensis, the agent of human monocytic ehrlichiosis, is an obligatory intracellular bacterium that exhibits monocytic host cell tropism. Ehrlichiae must enter the host cell, and then establish infection. The tropism of E. chaffeensis for monocytes suggests that the cell contains some specific surface components that mediate E. chaffeensis attachment and entry into host cells. In this study, host cell surface components that play a role in ehrlichial attachment were identified using a human monocyte/macrophage cell line, THP-1. E. chaffeensis attachment to THP-1 cells was partially blocked in the presence of antibodies to E-selectin and L-selectin, but not by antibodies to P-selectin, integrin αm, integrin αx, or normal mouse IgG as determined by real time polymerase chain reaction. Conversely, in HeLa cells that do not exhibit surface expression of E-selectin and L-selectin, antibodies to these cell surface proteins did not inhibit E. chaffeensis attachment. These findings indicate that E-selectin and L-selectin are cell surface proteins that might act as co-receptors and contribute to E. chaffeensis attachment and entry into THP-1.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)303-309
Number of pages7
JournalFEMS Microbiology Letters
Issue number2
StatePublished - Oct 24 2003



  • Ehrlichia chaffeensis
  • Receptor
  • Selectin

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Microbiology
  • Molecular Biology
  • Genetics

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