Maria Tutukina and Mikhail Gelfand from Skoltech have co-authored an article “Chromosome-encoded IpaH ubiquitin ligases indicate non-human enteroinvasive Escherichia” that has been published in Scientific Reports journal. The researchers performed a comparative genomic study of the functional repertoires in the ipaH gene family in Shigella and enteroinvasive Escherichia from human and predicted non-human hosts. ipaH genes encode E3 ubiquitin-ligases that have a key role in the Shigella pathogenicity through the modulation of cellular ubiquitination that degrades host proteins. The scientists found that fewer than half of Shigella genomes had a complete set of ipaH genes. Non-human host IpaH proteins had a diverse set of substrate-binding domains. Only the ipaH9.8 gene was found in Escherichia derived from both human and non-human hosts. These results provide a framework for understanding of ipaH-mediated host-pathogens interactions. Full text of the paper is available here.