Interference of Staphylococcus aureus virulence factors in the blood coagulation system
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The innate immune system uses coagulation as a defense mechanism against pathogens. In this way, the invading bacteria is trapped and immobilized in a blood clot. However, bacteria also use coagulation as an immune evasive strategy. Staphylococcus aureus is one of these bacteria, which produces virulence factors that enable blood clotting. This results in the formation of abscesses where S. aureus can replicate freely and the depletion of clotting factors from the blood is established (McAdow 2012). The fact that S. aureus causes blood clotting has been described as early as 1903 (Loeb 1903). Since then, this phenomenon has mainly been attributed to Coagulase and von Willebrand factor (Hartleib et al. 2000). However, many more virulence factors have the ability to influence hemostasis in staphylococcal infections. In this review the effects of S. aureus on several aspects of the blood coagulation system are described.