G. Schoolnik, J. Rothbard
Journal name not available for this finding
Pili are proteinaceous surface appendages of bacteria that promote infectivity by facilitating the adherence of gonococci to mucosal surfaces. Piliation is also correlated with the resistance of gonococci to phagocytosis by human polymorphonuclear leukocytes and mouse peritoneal macrophages [1, 2]. Pili are immunogenic and the anti-pili antibody elicited in humans by natural infection or systemic immunization with pili binds both strain-specific (homologous) and cross-reactive (common) antigenic determinants [3–5]. The molecular basis for the functional and antigenic properties of gonococcal pili is the subject of this paper.