Central metabolism controls transcription of a virulence gene regulator in Vibrio cholerae

Oregon State University
Microbiology (Impact Factor: 2.56). 02/2013; 159(Pt_4). DOI: 10.1099/mic.0.064865-0
Source: PubMed


ToxT is the central regulatory protein involved in activation of the main virulence genes in Vibrio cholerae. We have identified transposon insertions in central metabolism genes, whose disruption increases toxT transcription. These disrupted genes encode the primary respiration-linked sodium pump (NADH-ubiquinone oxidoreductase or NQR) and certain tricarboxylic acid (TCA) cycle enzymes. Observations made following stimulation of respiration in the nqr mutant or chemical inhibition of NQR activity in the TCA cycle mutants led to the hypothesis that NQR affects toxT transcription via the TCA cycle. That toxT transcription increased when the growth medium was supplemented with citrate, but decreased with oxaloacetate, focused our attention on the TCA cycle substrate acetyl-coenzyme A (acetyl-CoA) and its non-TCA cycle metabolism. Indeed, both the nqr and TCA cycle mutants increased acetate excretion. A similar correlation between acetate excretion and toxT transcription was observed in the tolC mutant and upon amino acid (NRES) supplementation. Since acetate and its tendency to decrease pH exerted no strong effect on toxT transcription, and since disruption of the major acetate excretion pathway increased toxT transcription, we propose that toxT transcription is regulated by either acetyl-CoA or some close derivative.

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    • "We had previously suggested that TCA cycle activity is decreased in the V. cholerae ΔnqrA-F mutant [10]. Consistent with this, intracellular isocitrate levels were decreased in the ΔnqrA-F mutant (Table 3). "
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    ABSTRACT: The Na+ translocating NADH:quinone oxidoreductase (Na+-NQR) is a unique respiratory enzyme catalyzing the electron transfer from NADH to quinone coupled with the translocation of sodium ions across the membrane. Typically, Vibrio spp., including Vibrio cholerae, have this enzyme but lack the proton-pumping NADH:ubiquinone oxidoreductase (Complex I). Thus, Na+-NQR should significantly contribute to multiple aspects of V. cholerae physiology; however, no detailed characterization of this aspect has been reported so far. In this study, we broadly investigated the effects of loss of Na+-NQR on V. cholerae physiology by using Phenotype Microarray (Biolog), transcriptome and metabolomics analyses. We found that the V. cholerae ΔnqrA-F mutant showed multiple defects in metabolism detected by Phenotype Microarray. Transcriptome analysis revealed that the V. cholerae ΔnqrA-F mutant up-regulates 31 genes and down-regulates 55 genes in both early and mid-growth phases. The most up-regulated genes included the cadA and cadB genes, encoding a lysine decarboxylase and a lysine/cadaverine antiporter, respectively. Increased CadAB activity was further suggested by the metabolomics analysis. The down-regulated genes include sialic acid catabolism genes. Metabolomic analysis also suggested increased reductive pathway of TCA cycle and decreased purine metabolism in the V. cholerae ΔnqrA-F mutant. Lack of Na+-NQR did not affect any of the Na+ pumping-related phenotypes of V. cholerae suggesting that other secondary Na+ pump(s) can compensate for Na+ pumping activity of Na+-NQR. Overall, our study provides important insights into the contribution of Na+-NQR to V. cholerae physiology.
    PLoS ONE 05/2014; 9(5):e97083. DOI:10.1371/journal.pone.0097083 · 3.23 Impact Factor
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    • "Fur is required for the expression of several proteins within the tricarboxylic acid cycle (TCA) and the Fe2+-dependent superoxide dismutase (SodB) (Hantke, 1987; Gruer and Guest, 1994; Dubrac and Touati, 2000, 2002). The disruption of the TCA cycle within fur mutants may have a relevant role for the regulation of virulence since mutations within the TCA cycle alter virulence expression in Staphylococcus epidermidis and Vibrio cholera (Sadykov et al., 2008; Minato et al., 2013). In addition, disruption of the TCA cycle reduces S. Typhimurium virulence in mice (Tchawa Yimga et al., 2006; Bowden et al., 2010). "
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    ABSTRACT: In the ancient anaerobic environment, ferrous iron (Fe(2+)) was one of the first metal cofactors. Oxygenation of the ancient world challenged bacteria to acquire the insoluble ferric iron (Fe(3+)) and later to defend against reactive oxygen species (ROS) generated by the Fenton chemistry. To acquire Fe(3+), bacteria produce low-molecular weight compounds, known as siderophores, which have extremely high affinity for Fe(3+). However, during infection the host restricts iron from pathogens by producing iron- and siderophore-chelating proteins, by exporting iron from intracellular pathogen-containing compartments, and by limiting absorption of dietary iron. Ferric Uptake Regulator (Fur) is a transcription factor which utilizes Fe(2+) as a corepressor and represses siderophore synthesis in pathogens. Fur, directly or indirectly, controls expression of enzymes that protect against ROS damage. Thus, the challenges of iron homeostasis and defense against ROS are addressed via Fur. Although the role of Fur as a repressor is well-documented, emerging evidence demonstrates that Fur can function as an activator. Fur activation can occur through three distinct mechanisms (1) indirectly via small RNAs, (2) binding at cis regulatory elements that enhance recruitment of the RNA polymerase holoenzyme (RNAP), and (3) functioning as an antirepressor by removing or blocking DNA binding of a repressor of transcription. In addition, Fur homologs control defense against peroxide stress (PerR) and control uptake of other metals such as zinc (Zur) and manganese (Mur) in pathogenic bacteria. Fur family members are important for virulence within bacterial pathogens since mutants of fur, perR, or zur exhibit reduced virulence within numerous animal and plant models of infection. This review focuses on the breadth of Fur regulation in pathogenic bacteria.
    Frontiers in Cellular and Infection Microbiology 10/2013; 3:59. DOI:10.3389/fcimb.2013.00059 · 3.72 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: We previously found that inhibition of the TCA cycle, either through mutations or chemical inhibition, increased toxT transcription in Vibrio cholerae. In this study, we found that the addition of malonate, an inhibitor of succinate dehydrogenase (SDH), decreased toxT transcription in V. cholerae, an observation inconsistent with the previous pattern observed. Unlike another SDH inhibitor, 2-thenoyltrifluoroacetone (TTFA), which increased toxT transcription and slightly inhibited V. cholerae growth, malonate inhibited toxT transcription in both the wild-type strain and TCA cycle mutants, suggesting malonate-mediated inhibition of virulence gene expression is independent to TCA cycle activity. Addition of malonate also inhibited ctxB and tcpA expressions but did not affect aphA, aphB, tcpP and toxR expressions. Malonate inhibited cholera toxin (CT) production in both V. cholerae classical biotype strains O395N1 and CA401, and El Tor biotype strain, N16961. Consistent with previous reports, we confirmed that these strains of V. cholerae did not utilize malonate as a primary carbon source. However, we found that the addition of malonate to the growth medium stimulated V. cholerae growth. All together, these results suggest that metabolizing malonate as a nutrient source negatively affects virulence gene expression in V. cholerae.
    PLoS ONE 05/2013; 8(5):e63336. DOI:10.1371/journal.pone.0063336 · 3.23 Impact Factor
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