Agmatine deiminase pathway genes in Lactobacillus brevis are linked to the tyrosine decarboxylation operon in a putative acid resistance locus.
ABSTRACT In lactic acid bacteria (LAB), amino acids and their derivatives may be converted into amine-containing compounds designated biogenic amines, in pathways providing metabolic energy and/or acid resistance to the bacteria. In a previous study, a pathway converting tyrosine to tyramine was detected in Lactobacillus brevis and a fragment of a gene possibly involved in the production of another biogenic amine, putrescine, from agmatine, was detected in the same locus. The present study was carried out to determine if Lb. brevis actually harbours two biogenic amine-producing pathways in the same locus and to investigate the occurrence of the two gene clusters in other bacteria. Sequencing of the DNA locus in Lb. brevis revealed a cluster of six genes that are related to previously reported genes of agmatine deiminase pathways but with marked differences such as two genes encoding putative agmatine deiminases rather than one. Heterologous expression of encoded enzymes confirmed the presence of at least one active agmatine deiminase and one amino acid transporter that efficiently exchanged agmatine and putrescine. It was concluded that the Lb. brevis gene cluster encodes a functional and highly specific agmatine deiminase pathway. Screening of a collection of 197 LAB disclosed the same genes in 36 strains from six different species, and almost all the positive bacteria also contained the tyrosine catabolic pathway genes in the same locus. These results support the hypothesis that the agmatine deiminase and tyrosine catabolic pathways belong to a genomic region that provides acid resistance and that is exchanged horizontally as a whole between LAB.
Article: Evidence of two functionally distinct ornithine decarboxylation systems in lactic acid bacteria.[show abstract] [hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: Biogenic amines are low-molecular-weight organic bases whose presence in food can result in health problems. The biosynthesis of biogenic amines in fermented foods mostly proceeds through amino acid decarboxylation carried out by lactic acid bacteria (LAB), but not all systems leading to biogenic amine production by LAB have been thoroughly characterized. Here, putative ornithine decarboxylation pathways consisting of a putative ornithine decarboxylase and an amino acid transporter were identified in LAB by strain collection screening and database searches. The decarboxylases were produced in heterologous hosts and purified and characterized in vitro, whereas transporters were heterologously expressed in Lactococcus lactis and functionally characterized in vivo. Amino acid decarboxylation by whole cells of the original hosts was determined as well. We concluded that two distinct types of ornithine decarboxylation systems exist in LAB. One is composed of an ornithine decarboxylase coupled to an ornithine/putrescine transmembrane exchanger. Their combined activities results in the extracellular release of putrescine. This typical amino acid decarboxylation system is present in only a few LAB strains and may contribute to metabolic energy production and/or pH homeostasis. The second system is widespread among LAB. It is composed of a decarboxylase active on ornithine and l-2,4-diaminobutyric acid (DABA) and a transporter that mediates unidirectional transport of ornithine into the cytoplasm. Diamines that result from this second system are retained within the cytosol.Applied and environmental microbiology 03/2012; 78(6):1953-61. · 3.69 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Limited experimental data may be very useful to discriminate between membrane topology models of membrane proteins derived from different methods. A membrane topology screening method is proposed by which the cellular disposition of three positions in a membrane protein are determined, the N- and the C-termini and a position in the middle of the protein. The method involves amplification of the encoding genes or gene fragments by PCR, rapid cloning in dedicated vectors by ligation independent cloning, and determination of the cellular disposition of the three sites using conventional techniques. The N-terminus was determined by labeling with a fluorescent probe, the central position and the C-terminus by the reporter fusion technique using alkaline phosphatase (PhoA) and green fluorescence protein (GFP) as reporters. The method was evaluated using 16 transporter proteins of known function from four different structural classes. For 13 proteins a complete set of three localizations was obtained. The experimental data was used to discriminate between membrane topology models predicted by TMHMM, a widely used predictor using the amino acid sequence as input and by MemGen that uses hydropathy profile alignment and known 3D structures or existing models. It follows that in those cases where the models from the two methods were similar, the models were consistent with the experimental data. In those cases where the models differed, the MemGen model agreed with the experimental data. Three more recent predictors, MEMSAT3, OCTOPUS and TOPCONS showed a significantly higher consistency with the experimental data than observed with TMHMM.Biochimica et Biophysica Acta 11/2009; 1798(3):672-80. · 4.66 Impact Factor
Article: The role of two families of bacterial enzymes in putrescine synthesis from agmatine via agmatine deiminase.[show abstract] [hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: Putrescine, one of the main biogenic amines associated to microbial food spoilage, can be formed by bacteria from arginine via ornithine decarboxylase (ODC), or from agmatine via agmatine deiminase (AgDI). This study aims to correlate putrescine production from agmatine to the pathway involving N-carbamoylputrescine formation via AdDI (the aguA product) and N-carbamoylputrescine amidohydrolase (the aguB product), or putrescine carbamoyltransferase (the ptcA product) in bacteria. PCR methods were developed to detect the two genes involved in putrescine production from agmatine. Putrescine production from agmatine could be linked to the aguA and ptcA genes in Lactobacillus hilgardii X1B, Enterococcus faecalis ATCC 11700, and Bacillus cereus ATCC 14579. By contrast Lactobacillus sakei 23K was unable to produce putrescine, and although a fragment of DNA corresponding to the gene aguA was amplified, no amplification was observed for the ptcA gene. Pseudomonas aeruginosa PAO1 produces putrescine and is reported to harbour aguA and aguB genes, responsible for agmatine deiminase and N-carbamoylputrescine amidohydrolase activities. The enzyme from P. aeruginosa PAO1 that converts N-carbamoylputrescine to putrescine (the aguB product) is different from other microorganisms studied (the ptcA product). Therefore, the aguB gene from P. aeruginosa PAO1 could not be amplified with ptcA-specific primers. The aguB and ptcA genes have frequently been erroneously annotated in the past, as in fact these two enzymes are neither homologous nor analogous. Furthermore, the aguA, aguB and ptcA sequences available from GenBank were subjected to phylogenetic analysis, revealing that gram-positive bacteria harboured ptcA, whereas gram-negative bacteria harbour aguB. This paper also discusses the role of the agmatine deiminase system (AgDS) in acid stress resistance.International Microbiology 12/2010; 13(4):169-77. · 1.80 Impact Factor