Antibacterial effect of microvesicles released from human neutrophilic granulocytes

Csaba I. Timár, Ákos M. Lorincz, Roland Csépányi-Kömi, Anna Vályi-Nagy, György Nagy, Edit I. Buzás, Zsolt Iványi, Ágnes Kittel, David W. Powell, Kenneth R. McLeish and Erzsébet Ligeti


Cell-derived vesicles represent a recently discovered mechanism for intercellular communication. In the present study we investigated their potential role in interaction of microbes with host organisms. We provide evidence that different stimuli induced isolated neutrophilic granulocytes to release microvesicles with different biological properties. Only opsonized particles initiated the formation of microvesicles that were able to impair bacterial growth. The antibacterial effect of neutrophil-derived microvesicles was independent of production of toxic oxygen metabolites and opsonization or engulfment of the microbes, but depended on β2 integrin function, continuous actin remodeling and on the glucose supply. Neutrophil-derived microvesicles were detected in the serum of healthy donors, and their number was significantly increased in the serum of bacteremic patients. We propose a new extracellular mechanism to restrict bacterial growth and dissemination.

  • Submitted May 24, 2012.
  • Accepted October 18, 2012.