Genetic analysis of the requirements for SOS induction by nalidixic acid in Escherichia coli.

Department of Biochemistry, Duke University Medical Center, Durham, NC 27710, USA.
Gene (Impact Factor: 2.08). 09/2005; 356:69-76. DOI: 10.1016/j.gene.2005.04.029
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Nalidixic acid, the prototype antibacterial quinolone, induces the SOS response by a mechanism that requires the RecBCD nuclease/helicase. A key step inferred for this induction pathway is the conversion of a drug-induced gyrase cleavage complex into a DNA break that can be processed by RecBC. We tried to clarify the nature of this step by searching for additional gene products that are specifically necessary for SOS induction following nalidixic acid treatment. A transposon library of approximately 19,000 insertion mutants yielded 18 mutants that were substantially reduced for SOS induction following nalidixic acid but not UV treatment, and which were also hypersensitive to nalidixic acid. All 18 mutants turned out to have insertions in recB or recC. As expected, recA insertion mutants were uncovered as being uninducible by either nalidixic acid or UV treatment. Insertions in 11 other genes were found to cause partial defects in SOS induction by one or both pathways, providing possible leads in understanding the detailed mechanisms of SOS induction. Overall, these results suggest that nalidixic acid-induced DNA breaks are generated either by RecBC itself, by redundant activities, and/or by an essential protein that could not be uncovered with transposon mutagenesis.

Download full-text


Available from: Kenneth N Kreuzer, Feb 19, 2015
  • Source
    • "The results mentioned above clearly underscore that application of certain drugs acting as DNA damaging agents promote a variety of consequences linked to SOS induction that affect pathogenicity. The molecular action of fluoroquinolones, although not understood in full detail, probably resides in the generation of double-stranded breaks and activation of RecA through disruption of their target topoisomerases (Newmark et al., 2005; Polhaus and Kreuzer, 2005; Malik et al., 2006). The link to SOS induction by 4-quinolones has been known for more than a decade, and the consequences described above should perhaps come as no surprise. "
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: The SOS response that responds to DNA damage induces many genes that are under LexA repression. A detailed examination of LexA regulons using genome-wide techniques has recently been undertaken in both Escherichia coli and Bacillus subtilis. These extensive and elegant studies have now charted the extent of the LexA regulons, uncovered many new genes, and exposed a limited overlap in the LexA regulon between the two bacteria. As more bacterial genomes are analysed, more curiosities in LexA regulons arise. Several notable examples include the discovery of a LexA-like protein, HdiR, in Lactococcus lactis, organisms with two lexA genes, and small DNA damage-inducible cassettes under LexA control. In the cyanobacterium Synechocystis, genetic and microarray studies demonstrated that a LexA paralogue exerts control over an entirely different set of carbon-controlled genes and is crucial to cells facing carbon starvation. An examination of SOS induction evoked by common therapeutic drugs has shed new light on unsuspected consequences of drug exposure. Certain antibiotics, most notably fluoroquinolones such as ciprofloxacin, can induce an SOS response and can modulate the spread of virulence factors and drug resistance. SOS induction by beta-lactams in E. coli triggers a novel form of antibiotic defence that involves cell wall stress and signal transduction by the DpiAB two-component system. In this review, we provide an overview of these new directions in SOS and LexA research with emphasis on a few themes: identification of genes under LexA control, the identification of new endogenous triggers, and antibiotic-induced SOS response and its consequences.
    Molecular Microbiology 01/2007; 62(5):1228-38. DOI:10.1111/j.1365-2958.2006.05444.x · 5.03 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: The widespread use and abuse of antibiotics as therapeutic agents has produced a major challenge for bacteria, leading to the selection and spread of antibiotic resistant variants. However, antibiotics do not seem to be mere selectors of these variants. Here we show that the fluoroquinolone antibiotic ciprofloxacin, an inhibitor of type II DNA topoisomerases, stimulates intrachromosomal recombination of DNA sequences. The stimulation of recombination between divergent sequences occurs via either the RecBCD or RecFOR pathways and is, surprisingly, independent of SOS induction. Additionally, this stimulation also occurs in a hyperrecombinogenic mismatch repair mutS mutant. It is worth noting that ciprofloxacin also stimulates the conjugational recombination of an antibiotic resistance gene. Finally, we demonstrate that Escherichia coli is able to recover from treatments with recombination-stimulating concentrations of the antibiotic. Thus, fluoroquinolones can increase genetic variation by the stimulation of the recombinogenic capability of treated bacteria (via an SOS-independent mechanism) and consequently may favour the acquisition, evolution and spread of antibiotic resistance determinants.
    Molecular Microbiology 05/2007; 64(1):83-93. DOI:10.1111/j.1365-2958.2007.05642.x · 5.03 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: After UV irradiation, recA mutants fail to recover replication, and a dramatic and nearly complete degradation of the genomic DNA occurs. Although the RecBCD helicase/nuclease complex is known to mediate this catastrophic DNA degradation, it is not known how or where this degradation is initiated. Previous studies have speculated that RecBCD targets and initiates degradation from the nascent DNA at replication forks arrested by DNA damage. To test this question, we examined which enzymes were responsible for the degradation of genomic DNA and the nascent DNA in UV-irradiated recA cells. We show here that, although RecBCD degrades the genomic DNA after UV irradiation, it does not target the nascent DNA at arrested replication forks. Instead, we observed that the nascent DNA at arrested replication forks in recA cultures is degraded by RecJ/RecQ, similar to what occurs in wild-type cultures. These findings indicate that the genomic DNA degradation and nascent DNA degradation in UV-irradiated recA mutants are mediated separately through RecBCD and RecJ/RecQ, respectively. In addition, they demonstrate that RecBCD initiates degradation at a site(s) other than the arrested replication fork directly.
    Radiation Research 11/2007; 168(4):499-506. DOI:10.1667/RR1033.1 · 2.45 Impact Factor