Publication Date



Cell Reports


Innate immune recognition of bacterial pathogens is a key determinant of the ensuing systemic response, and host or pathogen heterogeneity in this early interaction can impact the course of infection. To gain insight into host response heterogeneity, we investigate macrophage inflammatory dynamics using primary human macrophages infected with Group B Streptococcus. Transcriptomic analysis reveals discrete cellular states within responding macrophages, one of which consists of four sub-states, reflecting inflammatory activation. Infection with six additional bacterial species—Staphylococcus aureus, Listeria monocytogenes, Enterococcus faecalis, Yersinia pseudotuberculosis, Shigella flexneri, and Salmonella enterica—recapitulates these states, though at different frequencies. We show that modulating the duration of infection and the presence of a toxin impacts inflammatory trajectory dynamics. We provide evidence for this trajectory in infected macrophages in an in vivo model of Staphylococcus aureus infection. Our cell-state analysis defines a framework for understanding inflammatory activation dynamics in response to bacterial infection.


CP, Molecular biology, host-pathogen interactions, infection trajectory, macrophage response, single-cell RNA-seq



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