The Helicobacter pylori Cag Type IV Secretion System.


Colonization of the human stomach with Helicobacter pylori strains containing the cag pathogenicity island is a risk factor for development of gastric cancer. The cag pathogenicity island contains genes encoding a secreted effector protein (CagA) and components of a type IV secretion system (Cag T4SS). The molecular architecture of the H. pylori Cag T4SS is substantially more complex than that of prototype T4SSs in other bacterial species. In this review, we discuss recent discoveries pertaining to the structure and function of the Cag T4SS and its role in gastric cancer pathogenesis.