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(1/95) Study of the (S)-hydroxynitrile lyase from Hevea brasiliensis: mechanistic implications.

Investigations of the (S)-selective hydroxynitrile lyase from Hevea brasiliensis were performed by electrospray mass spectroscopy, (1)H-NMR and with an enzyme activity assay. For the trans-cyanohydrin reaction (transcyanation) a two step reaction could be established. The results furthermore indicate a fast deactivation of the enzyme at low pH and a strong substrate dependence of its stability. They rule out an enzyme-HCN complex or a covalently bound carbonyl compound. Therefore the earlier postulated reaction intermediate as well as the proposed action of the catalytic triad have to be reevaluated. The calculated molecular mass could be confirmed by mass spectroscopy.  (+info)

(2/95) A regulatory RNA (PrrB RNA) modulates expression of secondary metabolite genes in Pseudomonas fluorescens F113.

The GacS-GacA two-component signal transduction system, which is highly conserved in gram-negative bacteria, is required for the production of exoenzymes and secondary metabolites in Pseudomonas spp. Screening of a Pseudomonas fluorescens F113 gene bank led to the isolation of a previously undefined locus which could restore secondary metabolite production to both gacS and gacA mutants of F113. Sequence analysis of this locus demonstrated that it did not contain any obvious Pseudomonas protein-coding open reading frames or homologues within available databases. Northern analysis indicated that the locus encodes an RNA (PrrB RNA) which is able to phenotypically complement gacS and gacA mutants and is itself regulated by the GacS-GacA two-component signal transduction system. Primer extension analysis of the 132-base transcript identified the transcription start site located downstream of a sigma(70) promoter sequence from positions -10 to -35. Inactivation of the prrB gene in F113 resulted in a significant reduction of 2, 4-diacetylphloroglucinol (Phl) and hydrogen cyanide (HCN) production, while increased metabolite production was observed when prrB was overexpressed. The prrB gene sequence contains a number of imperfect repeats of the consensus sequence 5'-AGGA-3', and sequence analysis predicted a complex secondary structure featuring multiple putative stem-loops with the consensus sequences predominantly positioned at the single-stranded regions at the ends of the stem-loops. This structure is similar to the CsrB and RsmB regulatory RNAs in Escherichia coli and Erwinia carotovora, respectively. Results suggest that a regulatory RNA molecule is involved in GacA-GacS-mediated regulation of Phl and HCN production in P. fluorescens F113.  (+info)

(3/95) A new spectrophotometric method for the toxicological diagnosis of cyanide poisoning.

A spectrophotometric method for the determination of hydrogen cyanide in biological fluids based on the release of cyanide ion by the addition of a strong acid and its subsequent specific reaction with hydroxocobalamin to give cyanocobalamin is proposed. The release of cyanide ion is accelerated by aeration with a stream of an inert gas (nitrogen) that carries it into the hydroxocobalamin solution. Although the in vitro reaction develops to completion within 20 min, reproducible quantitation in biological media takes 45 min. The cyanocobalamin formed is quantitated by second-derivative visible spectrophotometry from the absorbance difference between 333 and 361 nm, the measured signal being proportional to the cyanide ion concentration in the sample.  (+info)

(4/95) Iron regulation of the hcnABC genes encoding hydrogen cyanide synthase depends on the anaerobic regulator ANR rather than on the global activator GacA in Pseudomonas fluorescens CHA0.

Pseudomonas fluorescens CHA0 produces hydrogen cyanide (HCN), a secondary metabolite that substantially contributes to this strain's biocontrol ability. Cyanogenesis is induced by oxygen-limiting conditions, but abolished by iron depletion. In P. fluorescens, the anaerobic regulator ANR and the global activator GacA are both required for the maximal expression of the HCN biosynthetic genes hcnABC. The molecular basis of this regulation by ANR and GacA was investigated under conditions of oxygen and iron limitation. A promoter deletion analysis using a translational hcnA'-'lacZ fusion revealed that a conserved FNR/ANR recognition sequence in the -40 promoter region was necessary and sufficient for the regulation by ANR in response to oxygen limitation. Stimulation of hcnA'-'lacZ expression by the addition of iron also depended on the presence of ANR and the FNR/ANR box, but not on GacA, suggesting that in addition to acting as an oxygen-sensitive protein, ANR also responds to iron availability. Expression of the translational hcnA'-'lacZ fusion remained GacA-dependent in hcn promoter mutants that were no longer responsive to ANR, in agreement with earlier evidence for a post-transcriptional regulatory mechanism under GacA control. These data support a model in which cyanogenesis is sequentially activated by ANR at the level of transcription and by components of the GacA network at the level of translation.  (+info)

(5/95) Transcriptional control of the hydrogen cyanide biosynthetic genes hcnABC by the anaerobic regulator ANR and the quorum-sensing regulators LasR and RhlR in Pseudomonas aeruginosa.

Virulence factors of Pseudomonas aeruginosa include hydrogen cyanide (HCN). This secondary metabolite is maximally produced at low oxygen tension and high cell densities during the transition from exponential to stationary growth phase. The hcnABC genes encoding HCN synthase were identified on a genomic fragment complementing an HCN-deficient mutant of P. aeruginosa PAO1. The hcnA promoter was found to be controlled by the FNR-like anaerobic regulator ANR and by the quorum-sensing regulators LasR and RhlR. Primer extension analysis revealed two transcription starts, T1 and T2, separated by 29 bp. Their function was confirmed by transcriptional lacZ fusions. The promoter sequence displayed an FNR/ANR box at -42.5 bp upstream of T2 and a lux box centered around -42.5 bp upstream of T1. Expression of the hcn genes was completely abolished when this lux box was deleted or inactivated by two point mutations in conserved nucleotides. The lux box was recognized by both LasR [activated by N-(oxododecanoyl)-homoserine lactone] and RhlR (activated by N-butanoyl-homoserine lactone), as shown by expression experiments performed in quorum-sensing-defective P. aeruginosa mutants and in the N-acyl-homoserine lactone-negative heterologous host P. fluorescens CHA0. A second, less conserved lux box lying 160 bp upstream of T1 seems to account for enhanced quorum-sensing-dependent expression. Without LasR and RhlR, ANR could not activate the hcn promoter. Together, these data indicate that expression of the hcn promoter from T1 can occur under quorum-sensing control alone. Enhanced expression from T2 appears to rely on a synergistic action between LasR, RhlR, and ANR.  (+info)

(6/95) Growth interactions during bacterial colonization of seedling rootlets.

Rootlet elongation and bacterial growth on rootlets were determined after inoculation of cucumber and spinach seedlings with Pseudomonas strains differing in production of siderophores and HCN. Siderophore producers grew more profusely than nonproducers on both species and promoted rootlet elongation on cucumber. Coinoculation of siderophore producers and nonproducers resulted in restricted growth of the latter. The total populations of nonproducers of HCN in the presence of HCN producers were not decreased, but the tenacity of their association with the rootlet surface was altered.  (+info)

(7/95) Auxin herbicides induce H(2)O(2) overproduction and tissue damage in cleavers (Galium aparine L.).

The phytotoxic effects of auxin herbicides, including the quinoline carboxylic acids quinmerac and quinclorac, the benzoic acid dicamba and the pyridine carboxylic acid picloram, were studied in relation to changes in phytohormonal ethylene and abscisic acid (ABA) levels and the production of H(2)O(2) in cleavers (Galium aparine). When plants were root-treated with 10 microM quinmerac, ethylene synthesis was stimulated in the shoot tissue, accompanied by increases in immunoreactive levels of ABA and its precursor xanthoxal. It has been demonstrated that auxin herbicide-stimulated ethylene triggers ABA biosynthesis. The time-course and dose-response of ABA accumulation closely correlated with reductions in stomatal aperture and CO(2) assimilation and increased levels of hydrogen peroxide (H(2)O(2)), deoxyribonuclease (DNase) activity and chlorophyll loss. The latter parameters were used as sensitive indicators for the progression of tissue damage. On a shoot dry weight basis, DNase activity and H(2)O(2) levels increased up to 3-fold, relative to the control. Corresponding effects were obtained using auxin herbicides from the other chemical classes or when ABA was applied exogenously. It is hypothesized, that auxin herbicides stimulate H(2)O(2) generation which contributes to the induction of cell death in Galium leaves. This overproduction of H(2)O(2) could be triggered by the decline of photosynthetic activity, due to ABA-mediated stomatal closure.  (+info)

(8/95) Pseudomonas aeruginosa PAO1 kills Caenorhabditis elegans by cyanide poisoning.

In this report we describe experiments to investigate a simple virulence model in which Pseudomonas aeruginosa PAO1 rapidly paralyzes and kills the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans. Our results imply that hydrogen cyanide is the sole or primary toxic factor produced by P. aeruginosa that is responsible for killing of the nematode. Four lines of evidence support this conclusion. First, a transposon insertion mutation in a gene encoding a subunit of hydrogen cyanide synthase (hcnC) eliminated nematode killing. Second, the 17 avirulent mutants examined all exhibited reduced cyanide synthesis, and the residual production levels correlated with killing efficiency. Third, exposure to exogenous cyanide alone at levels comparable to the level produced by PAO1 killed nematodes with kinetics similar to those observed with bacteria. The killing was not enhanced if hcnC mutant bacteria were present during cyanide exposure. And fourth, a nematode mutant (egl-9) resistant to P. aeruginosa was also resistant to killing by exogenous cyanide in the absence of bacteria. A model for nematode killing based on inhibition of mitochondrial cytochrome oxidase is presented. The action of cyanide helps account for the unusually broad host range of virulence of P. aeruginosa and may contribute to the pathogenesis in opportunistic human infections due to the bacterium.  (+info)