High-efficiency counterselection recombineering for site-directed mutagenesis in bacterial artificial chromosomes.
ABSTRACT Whereas bacterial artificial chromosomes (BACs) offer many advantages in studies of gene and protein function, generation of seamless, precisely mutated BACs has been difficult. Here we describe a counterselection-based recombineering method and its accompanying reagents. After identifying intramolecular recombination as the major problem in counterselection, we built a strategy to reduce these unwanted events by expressing Redβ alone at the crucial step. We enhanced this method by using phosphothioated oligonucleotides, using a sequence-altered rpsL counterselection gene and developing online software for oligonucleotide design. We illustrated this method by generating transgenic mammalian cell lines carrying small interfering RNA-resistant and point-mutated BAC transgenes. Using this approach, we generated mutated TACC3 transgenes to identify phosphorylation-specific spindle defects after knockdown of endogenous TACC3 expression. Our results highlight the complementary use of precisely mutated BAC transgenes and RNA interference in the study of cell biology at physiological expression levels and regulation.
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ABSTRACT: Selection has been invaluable for genetic manipulation, although counter-selection has historically exhibited limited robustness and convenience. TolC, an outer membrane pore involved in transmembrane transport in E. coli, has been implemented as a selectable/counter-selectable marker, but counter-selection escape frequency using colicin E1 precludes using tolC for inefficient genetic manipulations and/or with large libraries. Here, we leveraged unbiased deep sequencing of 96 independent lineages exhibiting counter-selection escape to identify loss-of-function mutations, which offered mechanistic insight and guided strain engineering to reduce counter-selection escape frequency by ∼40-fold. We fundamentally improved the tolC counter-selection by supplementing a second agent, vancomycin, which reduces counter-selection escape by 425-fold, compared colicin E1 alone. Combining these improvements in a mismatch repair proficient strain reduced counter-selection escape frequency by 1.3E6-fold in total, making tolC counter-selection as effective as most selectable markers, and adding a valuable tool to the genome editing toolbox. These improvements permitted us to perform stable and continuous rounds of selection/counter-selection using tolC, enabling replacement of 10 alleles without requiring genotypic screening for the first time. Finally, we combined these advances to create an optimized E. coli strain for genome engineering that is ∼10-fold more efficient at achieving allelic diversity than previous best practices.Nucleic Acids Research 01/2014; · 8.81 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Urinary tract infection (UTI) is one of the most common bacterial infections in humans, with uropathogenic Escherichia coli (UPEC) the leading causative organism. UPEC has a number of virulence factors that enable it to overcome host defenses within the urinary tract and establish infection. The O antigen and the capsular polysaccharide are two such factors that provide a survival advantage to UPEC. Here we describe the application of the rpsL counter selection system to construct capsule (kpsD) and O antigen (waaL) mutants and complemented derivatives of three reference UPEC strains: CFT073 (O6:K2:H1), RS218 (O18:K1:H7) and 1177 (O1:K1:H7). We observed that while the O1, O6 and O18 antigens were required for survival in human serum, the role of the capsule was less clear and linked to O antigen type. In contrast, both the K1 and K2 capsular antigens provided a survival advantage to UPEC in whole blood. In the mouse urinary tract, mutation of the O6 antigen significantly attenuated CFT073 bladder colonization. Overall, this study contrasts the role of capsule and O antigen in three common UPEC serotypes using defined mutant and complemented strains. The combined mutagenesis-complementation strategy can be applied to study other virulence factors with complex functions both in vitro and in vivo.PLoS ONE 01/2014; 9(4):e94786. · 3.73 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Pericentriolar material (PCM) recruitment to centrioles forms a key step in centrosome biogenesis. Deregulation of this process leads to centrosome aberrations causing disorders, one of which is autosomal recessive primary microcephaly (MCPH), a neurodevelopmental disorder where brain size is reduced. During PCM recruitment, the conserved centrosomal protein Sas-4/CPAP/MCPH6, known to play a role in centriole formation, acts as a scaffold for cytoplasmic PCM complexes to bind and then tethers them to centrioles to form functional centrosomes. To understand Sas-4's tethering role, we determined the crystal structure of its T complex protein 10 (TCP) domain displaying a solvent-exposed single-layer of β-sheets fold. This unique feature of the TCP domain suggests that it could provide an "extended surface-like" platform to tether the Sas-4-PCM scaffold to a centriole. Functional studies in Drosophila, human cells, and human induced pluripotent stem cell-derived neural progenitor cells were used to test this hypothesis, where point mutations within the 9-10th β-strands (β9-10 mutants including a MCPH-associated mutation) perturbed PCM tethering while allowing Sas-4/CPAP to scaffold cytoplasmic PCM complexes. Specifically, the Sas-4 β9-10 mutants displayed perturbed interactions with Ana2, a centrosome duplication factor, and Bld-10, a centriole microtubule-binding protein, suggesting a role for the β9-10 surface in mediating protein-protein interactions for efficient Sas-4-PCM scaffold centriole tethering. Hence, we provide possible insights into how centrosomal protein defects result in human MCPH and how Sas-4 proteins act as a vehicle to tether PCM complexes to centrioles independent of its well-known role in centriole duplication.Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 01/2014; · 9.74 Impact Factor