The Salmonella typhi melittin resistance gene pqaB affects intracellular growth in PMA-differentiated U937 cells, polymyxin B resistance and lipopolysaccharide.
Salmonella typhi is the causative agent of typhoid fever in humans. A cell-culture based assay involving the human monocyte macrophage cell line U937 has been developed to examine S. typhi invasion and survival. An S. typhi PhoP- (null) mutant was shown to be restricted in net growth in phorbol myristate acetate (PMA) differentiated U937 (PMA-U937) cells, and an S. typhi PhoPc (constitutive) mutant showed a defect in invasion. Neither of the phoP/Q mutants were growth impaired in HeLa cells, however the PhoPc mutant was impaired in invasion. As opposed to what was found for S. typhi, Salmonella typhimurium wild-type, PhoP- and PhoPc mutants grew equally well in PMA-U937 cells, indicating that the PhoP(-)-mediated net growth restriction in the PMA-U937 cells was S. typhi specific. An S. typhi mutation, pqaB::MudJ, recently shown to be a PhoP-activated locus, was shown to have a net growth defect in PMA-U937 cells. Sequencing of the S. typhipqaB gene revealed it had 98% identity to the fifth gene in a S. typhimurium PmrA/B regulated operon necessary for 4-aminoarabinose lipid A modification and polymyxin B resistance. The pqaB locus was regulated by PmrA/B (whose activity is modulated by PhoP-PhoQ) and the pqaB transposon mutant was sensitive to polymyxin B. The lipopolysaccharides (LPS) of S. typhi and S. typhimurium wild-type, PhoP- and PhoPc mutants, were compared by SDS-PAGE and silver staining. Differences in the LPS profile between the two Salmonella species were observed, and shown to be affected differently by the PhoPc mutation. Additionally, the pqaB::MudJ mutation affected S. typhi LPS. The effects on LPS may have ramifications for the difference between S. typhi and S. typhimurium infection of hosts. (+info)
Effect of 9-beta-D-arabinofuranosyladenine 5'-monophosphate and 9-beta-D-arabinofuranosylhypoxanthine 5'-monophosphate on experimental herpes simplex keratitis.
Treatment of established experimental keratitis caused by herpes simplex virus with 9-beta-d-arabinofuranosyladenine 5'-monophosphate (Ara-AMP) or 9-beta-d-arabinofuranosylhypoxanthine 5'-monophosphate (Ara-HxMP) showed that the Ara-AMP, in a concentration of 2 or 20%, had a significant effect on the keratitis but that 0.4% Ara-HxMP showed only minimal activity. Ara-AMP was also effective in the treatment of idoxuridine-resistant keratitis. No local toxicity with a high concentration (20%) of Ara-AMP was seen, but the duration of therapy was brief. (+info)
Transcriptional activation of ydeA, which encodes a member of the major facilitator superfamily, interferes with arabinose accumulation and induction of the Escherichia coli arabinose PBAD promoter.
Induction of genes expressed from the arabinose PBAD promoter is very rapid and maximal at low arabinose concentrations. We describe here two mutations that interfere with the expression of genes cloned under arabinose control. Both mutations map to the ydeA promoter and stimulate ydeA transcription; overexpression of YdeA from a multicopy plasmid confers the same phenotype. One mutation is a large deletion that creates a more efficient -35 region (ATCACA changed to TTCACA), whereas the other affects the initiation site (TTTT changed to TGTT). The ydeA gene is expressed at extremely low levels in exponentially growing wild-type cells and is not induced by arabinose. Disruption of ydeA has no detectable effect on cell growth. Thus, ydeA appears to be nonessential under usual laboratory growth conditions. The ydeA gene encodes a membrane protein with 12 putative transmembrane segments. YdeA belongs to the largest family of bacterial secondary active transporters, the major facilitator superfamily, which includes antibiotic resistance exporters, Lac permease, and the nonessential AraJ protein. Intracellular accumulation of arabinose is strongly decreased in mutant strains overexpressing YdeA, suggesting that YdeA facilitates arabinose export. Consistent with this interpretation, very high arabinose concentrations can compensate for the negative effect of ydeA transcriptional activation. Our studies (i) indicate that YdeA, when transcriptionally activated, contributes to the control of the arabinose regulon and (ii) demonstrate a new way to modulate the kinetics of induction of cloned genes. (+info)
Phylogenetic analysis of Ara+ and Ara- Burkholderia pseudomallei isolates and development of a multiplex PCR procedure for rapid discrimination between the two biotypes.
A Burkholderia pseudomallei-like organism has recently been identified among some soil isolates of B. pseudomallei in an area with endemic melioidosis. This organism is almost identical to B. pseudomallei in terms of morphological and biochemical profiles, except that it differs in ability to assimilate L-arabinose. These Ara+ isolates are also less virulent than the Ara- isolates in animal models. In addition, clinical isolates of B. pseudomallei available to date are almost exclusively Ara-. These features suggested that these two organisms may belong to distinctive species. In this study, the 16S rRNA-encoding genes from five clinical (four Ara- and one Ara+) and nine soil isolates (five Ara- and four Ara+) of B. pseudomallei were sequenced. The nucleotide sequences and phylogenetic analysis indicated that the 16S rRNA-encoding gene of the Ara+ biotype was similar to but distinctively different from that of the Ara- soil isolates, which were identical to the classical clinical isolates of B. pseudomallei. The nucleotide sequence differences in the 16S rRNA-encoding gene appeared to be specific for the Ara+ or Ara- biotypes. The differences were, however, not sufficient for classification into a new species within the genus Burkholderia. A simple and rapid multiplex PCR procedure was developed to discriminate between Ara- and Ara+ B. pseudomallei isolates. This new method could also be incorporated into our previously reported nested PCR system for detecting B. pseudomallei in clinical specimens. (+info)
Substrate sequestration by a proteolytically inactive Lon mutant.
Lon protein of Escherichia coli is an ATP-dependent protease responsible for the rapid turnover of both abnormal and naturally unstable proteins, including SulA, a cell division inhibitor made after DNA damage, and RcsA, a positive regulator of transcription. Lon is a multimer of identical 94-kDa subunits, each containing a consensus ATPase motif and a serine active site. We found that overexpressing Lon, which is mutated for the serine active site (LonS679A) and is therefore devoid of proteolytic activity, unexpectedly led to complementation of the UV sensitivity and capsule overproduction of a lon deletion mutant. SulA was not degraded by LonS679A, but rather was completely protected by the Lon mutant from degradation by other cellular proteases. We interpret these results to mean that the mutant LonS679A binds but does not degrade Lon substrates, resulting in sequestration of the substrate proteins and interference with their activities, resulting in apparent complementation. Lon that carried a mutation in the consensus ATPase site, either with or without the active site serine, was no longer able to complement a Deltalon mutant. These in vivo results suggest that the pathway of degradation by Lon couples ATP-dependent unfolding with movement of the substrate into protected chambers within Lon, where it is held until degradation proceeds. In the absence of degradation the substrate remains sequestered. Comparison of our results with those from a number of other systems suggest that proteins related to the regulatory portions of energy-dependent proteases act as energy-dependent sequestration proteins. (+info)
Mapping an interface of SecY (PrlA) and SecE (PrlG) by using synthetic phenotypes and in vivo cross-linking.
SecY and SecE are integral cytoplasmic membrane proteins that form an essential part of the protein translocation machinery in Escherichia coli. Sites of direct contact between these two proteins have been suggested by the allele-specific synthetic phenotypes exhibited by pairwise combinations of prlA and prlG signal sequence suppressor mutations in these genes. We have introduced cysteine residues within the first periplasmic loop of SecY and the second periplasmic loop of SecE, at a specific pair of positions identified by this genetic interaction. The expression of the cysteine mutant pair results in a dominant lethal phenotype that requires the presence of DsbA, which catalyzes the formation of disulfide bonds. A reducible SecY-SecE complex is also observed, demonstrating that these amino acids must be sufficiently proximal to form a disulfide bond. The use of cysteine-scanning mutagenesis enabled a second contact site to be discovered. Together, these two points of contact allow the modeling of a limited region of quaternary structure, establishing the first characterized site of interaction between these two proteins. This study proves that actual points of protein-protein contact can be identified by using synthetic phenotypes. (+info)
Specific chromosome alterations in fluconazole-resistant mutants of Candida albicans.
The exposure of Candida albicans to fluconazole resulted in the nondisjunction of two specific chromosomes in 17 drug-resistant mutants, each obtained by an independent mutational event. The chromosomal changes occurred at high frequencies and were related to the duration of the drug exposure. The loss of one homologue of chromosome 4 occurred after incubation on a fluconazole medium for 7 days. A second change, the gain of one copy of chromosome 3, was observed after exposure for 35 or 40 days. We found that the mRNA levels of ERG11, CDR1, CDR2, and MDR1, the candidate fluconazole resistance genes, remained either the same or were diminished. The lack of overexpression of putative drug pumps or the drug target indicated that some other mechanism(s) may be operating. The fluconazole resistance phenotype, electrophoretic karyotypes, and transcript levels of mutants were stable after growth for 112 generations in the absence of fluconazole. This is the first report to demonstrate that resistance to fluconazole can be dependent on chromosomal nondisjunction. Furthermore, we suggest that a low-level resistance to fluconazole arising during the early stages of clinical treatment may occur by this mechanism. These results support our earlier hypothesis that changes in C. albicans chromosome number is a common means to control a resource of potentially beneficial genes that are related to important cellular functions. (+info)
Escherichia coli gene ydeA encodes a major facilitator pump which exports L-arabinose and isopropyl-beta-D-thiogalactopyranoside.
Inactivation of the Escherichia coli gene ydeA, which encodes a member of the major facilitator superfamily, decreased the efflux of L-arabinose, thereby affecting the expression of AraC-regulated genes. In addition, overexpression of ydeA decreased the expression of genes regulated by isopropyl-beta-D-thiogalactopyranoside. (+info)