Christopher Hernandez Rose Hills
Characterizing steptococcus pyogenes infection in hexokinase 2 deficient macrophages.
It was recently discovered that hexokinase 2, a cellular metabolic enzyme, can act as a pathogen pattern recognition receptor and activator of the inflammasome within macrophages. Specifically, hexokinase 2 is activated by a saccharide subunit of the peptidoglycan cell wall found in many bacteria. Gram + bacteria have a greater abundance of cell wall subunits available for recognition and therefore have a greater potential to activate, and therefore be controlled by, hexokinase 2. We will characterize the importance of hexokinase 2 in mediating an immune response by infecting murine macrophages deficient in hexokinase 2 enzyme.