Alecia N Septer

University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio, San Antonio, Texas, United States

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Publications (3)9.37 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: The Salmonella PreA/PreB two-component system (TCS) is an ortholog of the QseBC TCS of Escherichia coli. In both Salmonella and E. coli, this system has been shown to affect motility and virulence in response to quorum-sensing and hormonal signals, and to affect the transcription of the Salmonella enterica serovar Typhimurium (S. Typhimurium) pmrAB operon, which encodes an important virulence-associated TCS. To determine the PreA/PreB regulon in S. Typhimurium, we performed DNA microarrays comparing the wild type strain and various preA and/or preB mutants in the presence of ectopically expressed preA (qseB). These data confirmed our previous findings of the negative effect of PreB on PreA gene regulation and identified candidate PreA-regulated genes. A proportion of the activated loci were previously identified as PmrA-activated genes (yibD, pmrAB, cptA, etc.) or were genes located in the local region around preA, including the preAB operon. The transcriptional units were defined in this local region by RT-PCR, suggesting three PreA activated operons composed of preA-preB, mdaB-ygiN, and ygiW-STM3175. Several putative virulence-related phenotypes were examined for preAB mutants, resulting in the observation of a host cell invasion and slight virulence defect of a preAB mutant. Contrary to previous reports on this TCS, we were unable to show a PreA/PreB-dependent effect of the quorum-sensing signal AI-2 or of epinephrine on S. Typhimurium with regard to bacterial motility. This work further characterizes this unorthadox OmpR/EnvZ class TCS and provides novel candidate regulated genes for further study. This first in-depth study of the PreA/PreB regulatory system phenotypes and regulation suggests significant comparative differences to the reported function of the orthologous QseB/QseC in E. coli.
    BMC Microbiology 03/2009; 9:42. · 2.98 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The PmrA/PmrB two-component system encoded by the pmrCAB operon regulates the modification of Salmonella enterica serovar Typhimurium lipopolysaccharide leading to polymyxin B resistance. PmrA and PhoP are the only known activators of pmrCAB. A transposon mutagenesis screen for additional regulators of a pmrC::MudJ fusion led to the identification of a two-component system, termed PreA/PreB (pmrCAB regulators A and B), that controls the transcription of the pmrCAB operon in response to unknown signals. The initial observations indicated that insertions in, or a deletion of, the preB sensor, but not the preA response regulator, caused upregulation of pmrCAB. Interestingly, the expression of pmrCAB was not upregulated in a preAB mutant grown in LB broth, implicating PreA in the increased expression of pmrCAB in the preB strain. This was confirmed by overexpression of preA(+) in preAB or preB backgrounds, which resulted in significant upregulation or further upregulation of pmrCAB. No such effect was observed in any tested preB(+) backgrounds. Additionally, an ectopic construct expressing a preA[D51A] allele also failed to upregulate pmrC in any of the pre backgrounds tested, which implies that there is a need for phosphorylation in the activation of the target genes. The observed upregulation of pmrCAB occurred independently of the response regulators PmrA and PhoP. Although a preB mutation led to increased transcription of pmrCAB, this did not result in a measurable effect on polymyxin B resistance. Our genetic data support a model of regulation whereby, in response to unknown signals, the PreB sensor activates PreA, which in turn indirectly upregulates pmrCAB transcription.
    Journal of Bacteriology 02/2006; 188(1):141-9. · 3.19 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: In response to the in vivo environment, the Salmonella enterica serovar Typhimurium lipopolysaccharide (LPS) is modified. These modifications are controlled in part by the two-component regulatory system PmrA-PmrB, with the addition of 4-aminoarabinose (Ara4N) to the lipid A and phosphoethanolamine (pEtN) to the lipid A and core. Here we demonstrate that the PmrA-regulated STM4118 (cptA) gene is necessary for the addition of pEtN to the LPS core. pmrC, a PmrA-regulated gene necessary for the addition of pEtN to lipid A, did not affect core pEtN addition. Although imparting a similar surface charge modification as Ara4N, which greatly affects polymyxin B resistance and murine virulence, neither pmrC nor cptA plays a dramatic role in antimicrobial peptide resistance in vitro or virulence in the mouse model. Therefore, factors other than surface charge/electrostatic interaction contribute to resistance to antimicrobial peptides such as polymyxin B.
    Journal of Bacteriology 06/2005; 187(10):3391-9. · 3.19 Impact Factor