Jolanta Zakrzewska-Czerwińska

University of Oxford, Oxford, England, United Kingdom

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Publications (91)285.66 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: Here, we present for the first time that Mycobacterium tuberculosis ParB is phosphorylated by several mycobacterial Ser/Thr protein kinases in vitro. ParB and ParA are the key components of bacterial chromosome segregation apparatus. ParB is a cytosolic conserved protein that binds specifically to centromere-like DNA parS sequences and interacts with ParA, a weak ATPase required for its proper localization. Mass spectrometry identified the presence of ten phosphate groups, thus indicating that ParB is phosphorylated on eight threonines, Thr32, Thr41, Thr53, Thr110, Thr195, and Thr254, Thr300, Thr303 as well as on two serines, Ser5 and Ser239. The phosphorylation sites were further substituted either by alanine to prevent phosphorylation or aspartate to mimic constitutive phosphorylation. Electrophoretic mobility shift assays revealed a drastic inhibition of DNA-binding by ParB phosphomimetic mutant compared to wild type. In addition, bacterial two-hybrid experiments showed a loss of ParA-ParB interaction with the phosphomimetic mutant, indicating that phosphorylation is regulating the recruitment of the partitioning complex. Moreover, fluorescence microscopy experiments performed in the surrogate Mycobacterium smegmatis ΔparB strain revealed that in contrast to wild type Mtb ParB, which formed subpolar foci similar to M. smegmatis ParB, phoshomimetic Mtb ParB was delocalized. Thus, our findings highlight a novel regulatory role of the different isoforms of ParB representing a molecular switch in localization and functioning of partitioning protein in Mycobacterium tuberculosis.
    PLoS ONE 03/2015; 10(3):e0119907. DOI:10.1371/journal.pone.0119907 · 3.53 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: IMPORTANCE Despite significant progress in elucidating the basic processes of bacterial chromosome replication and segregation, understanding of chromosome dynamics during the mycobacterial cell cycle remains incomplete. Here, we provide in vivo experimental evidence that replisomes in Mycobacterium smegmatis are highly dynamic, frequently splitting into two distinct replication forks. However, unlike in Escherichia coli, the forks do not segregate toward opposite cell poles but remain in relatively close proximity. In addition, we show that replication cycles do not overlap. Finally, our data suggest that ParB participates in the positioning of newly born replisomes in M. smegmatis cells. The present results broaden our understanding of chromosome segregation in slow-growing bacteria. In view of the complexity of the mycobacterial cell cycle, especially for pathogenic representatives of the genus, understanding the mechanisms and factors that affect chromosome dynamics will facilitate the identification of novel antimicrobial factors.
    mBio 02/2015; 6(1):e02125-14. DOI:10.1128/mBio.02125-14 · 6.88 Impact Factor
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    Marcin Wolański, Rafał Donczew, Anna Zawilak-Pawlik, Jolanta Zakrzewska-Czerwińska
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    ABSTRACT: Replication of the bacterial chromosome initiates at a single origin of replication that is called oriC. This occurs via the concerted action of numerous proteins, including DnaA, which acts as an initiator. The origin sequences vary across species, but all bacterial oriCs contain the information necessary to guide assembly of the DnaA protein complex at oriC, triggering the unwinding of DNA and the beginning of replication. The requisite information is encoded in the unique arrangement of specific sequences called DnaA boxes, which form a framework for DnaA binding and assembly. Other crucial sequences of bacterial origin include DNA unwinding element (DUE, which designates the site at which oriC melts under the influence of DnaA) and binding sites for additional proteins that positively or negatively regulate the initiation process. In this review, we summarize our current knowledge and understanding of the information encoded in bacterial origins of chromosomal replication, particularly in the context of replication initiation and its regulation. We show that oriC encoded instructions allow not only for initiation but also for precise regulation of replication initiation and coordination of chromosomal replication with the cell cycle (also in response to environmental signals). We focus on Escherichia coli, and then expand our discussion to include several other microorganisms in which additional regulatory proteins have been recently shown to be involved in coordinating replication initiation to other cellular processes (e.g., Bacillus, Caulobacter, Helicobacter, Mycobacterium, and Streptomyces). We discuss diversity of bacterial oriC regions with the main focus on roles of individual DNA recognition sequences at oriC in binding the initiator and regulatory proteins as well as the overall impact of these proteins on the formation of initiation complex.
    Frontiers in Microbiology 01/2015; 5(735). DOI:10.3389/fmicb.2014.00735 · 3.94 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Correction for ‘Ni2+ chemistry in pathogens – a possible target for eradication’ by Magdalena Rowinska-Zyrek et al., Dalton Trans., 2014, 43, 8976–8989.
    Dalton Transactions 10/2014; 43(44). DOI:10.1039/C4DT90161D · 4.10 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: In bacteria, chromosome replication is initiated by binding of the DnaA initiator protein to DnaA boxes located in the origin of chromosomal replication (oriC). This leads to DNA helix opening within the DNA-unwinding element. Helicobacter pylori oriC, the first bipartite origin identified in Gram-negative bacteria, contains two subregions, oriC1 and oriC2, flanking the dnaA gene. The DNA-unwinding element region is localized in the oriC2 subregion downstream of dnaA. Surprisingly, oriC2-DnaA interactions were shown to depend on DNA topology, which is unusual in bacteria but is similar to initiator-origin interactions observed in higher organisms. In this work, we identified three DnaA boxes in the oriC2 subregion, two of which were bound only as supercoiled DNA. We found that all three DnaA boxes play important roles in orisome assembly and subsequent DNA unwinding, but different functions can be assigned to individual boxes. This suggests that the H. pylori oriC may be functionally divided, similar to what was described recently for Escherichia coli oriC. On the basis of these results, we propose a model of initiation complex formation in H. pylori.
    Journal of Molecular Biology 07/2014; 426(15):2769-82. DOI:10.1016/j.jmb.2014.05.018 · 3.96 Impact Factor
  • Marcin Wolański, Dagmara Jakimowicz, Jolanta Zakrzewska-Czerwińska
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    ABSTRACT: Numerous free-living bacteria undergo complex differentiation in response to unfavorable environmental conditions or as part of their natural cell cycle. Developmental programmes require the de novo expression of several sets of genes responsible for morphological, physiological, and metabolic changes, such as spore/endospore formation, the generation of flagella, and the synthesis of antibiotics. Noteworthy, the frequency of chromosomal replication initiation events must also be adjusted to the developmental stage, in order to ensure that each nascent cell receives a single copy of the chromosomal DNA. In this review, we focus on the master transcriptional factors, Spo0A, CtrA and AdpA, which coordinate developmental program and which were recently demonstrated to control chromosome replication. We summarize the current state of knowledge on the role of these developmental regulators in synchronizing the replication with cell differentiation in Bacillus subtilis, Caulobacter crescentus and Streptomyces coelicolor, respectively.
    Journal of Bacteriology 06/2014; 196(16). DOI:10.1128/JB.01706-14 · 2.69 Impact Factor
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    Nucleic Acids Research 05/2014; · 9.11 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Amongst enzymes which relieve torsional strain and maintain chromosome supercoiling, type IA topoisomerases share a strand-passage mechanism that involves transient nicking and re-joining of a single deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) strand. In contrast to many bacterial species that possess two type IA topoisomerases (TopA and TopB), Actinobacteria possess only TopA, and unlike its homologues this topoisomerase has a unique C-terminal domain that lacks the Zn-finger motifs characteristic of type IA enzymes. To better understand how this unique C-terminal domain affects the enzyme's activity, we have examined DNA relaxation by actinobacterial TopA from Streptomyces coelicolor (ScTopA) using real-time single-molecule experiments. These studies reveal extremely high processivity of ScTopA not described previously for any other topoisomerase of type I. Moreover, we also demonstrate that enzyme processivity varies in a torque-dependent manner. Based on the analysis of the C-terminally truncated ScTopA mutants, we propose that high processivity of the enzyme is associated with the presence of a stretch of positively charged amino acids in its C-terminal region.
    Nucleic Acids Research 05/2014; 42(12). DOI:10.1093/nar/gku494 · 9.11 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The survival of all urease and/or hydrogenase containing pathogens depends on the proper homeostasis of nickel. In the scope of this perspectives paper, details of Ni(2+) metabolism of Helicobacter pylori, a widespread stomach-ulcer causing bacterium, are described. Nickel binding proteins and thermodynamics of such metal complexes are discussed in detail and special focus is given to potential nickel binding sequences in this metal's chaperones and regulators. A list of potential Ni(2+) binding sites in various pathogens is presented, which points out numerous examples of nickel interactions that still need to be understood.
    Dalton Transactions 04/2014; 43(24). DOI:10.1039/c4dt00421c · 4.10 Impact Factor
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    Rafał Donczew, Jolanta Zakrzewska-Czerwińska, Anna Zawilak-Pawlik
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    ABSTRACT: The replication of chromosomal DNA is a fundamental event in the life cycle of every cell. The first step of replication, initiation, is controlled by multiple factors to ensure only one round of replication per cell cycle. The process of initiation has been described most thoroughly for bacteria, especially Escherichia coli, and involves many regulatory proteins that vary considerably between different species. These proteins control the activity of the two key players of initiation in bacteria: the initiator protein DnaA, and the origin of chromosome replication (oriC). Factors involved in the control of the availability, activity, or oligomerization of DnaA during initiation are generally regarded as the most important, and thus have been thoroughly characterised. Other aspects of the initiation process, such as origin accessibility and susceptibility to unwinding, have been less explored. However, recent findings indicate that these factors have a significant role. This review focuses on DNA topology, conformation, and methylation as important factors that regulate the initiation process in bacteria. We present a comprehensive summary of the factors involved in the modulation of DNA topology, both locally at oriC and more globally at the level of the entire chromosome. We show clearly that the conformation of oriC dynamically changes, and control of this conformation constitutes another, important factor in the regulation of bacterial replication initiation. Furthermore, the process of initiation appears to be associated with the dynamics of the entire chromosome and this association is an important but largely unexplored phenomenon.
    Journal of Molecular Biology 04/2014; DOI:10.1016/j.jmb.2014.04.009 · 3.96 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: During infection of macrophages, Mycobacterium tuberculosis, the pathogen that causes tuberculosis, utilizes fatty acids as a major carbon source. However, little is known about the coordination of the central carbon metabolism of M. tuberculosis with its chromosomal replication, particularly during infection. A recently characterized transcription factor called PrpR is known to directly regulate the genes involved in fatty acid catabolism by M. tuberculosis. Here, we report for the first time that PrpR also regulates the dnaA gene, which encodes the DnaA initiator protein responsible for initiating chromosomal replication. Using cell-free systems and intact cells, we demonstrated an interaction between PrpR and the dnaA promoter region. Moreover, real-time quantitative reverse-transcription PCR analysis revealed that PrpR acts as a transcriptional repressor of dnaA when propionate (a product of odd-chain-length fatty acid catabolism) was used as the sole carbon source. We hypothesize that PrpR may be an important element of the complex regulatory system(s) required for tubercle bacilli to survive within macrophages, presumably coordinating the catabolism of host-derived fatty acids with chromosomal replication.
    Antonie van Leeuwenhoek 04/2014; 105(5). DOI:10.1007/s10482-014-0153-0 · 2.14 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Streptomyces are bacteria that resemble filamentous fungi in their hyphal mode of growth and sporulation. In S. coelicolor, the conversion of multigenomic aerial hyphae into chains of unigenomic spores requires synchronized septation accompanied by segregation of tens of chromosomes into prespore compartments. The chromosome segregation is dependent on ParB protein, which assembles into an array of nucleoprotein complexes in the aerial hyphae. Here, we report that nucleoprotein ParB complexes are bound in vitro and in vivo by topoisomerase I - TopA, which is the only topoisomerase I homolog found in S. coelicolor. TopA cannot be eliminated, and its depletion inhibits growth and blocks sporulation. Surprisingly, sporulation in the TopA-depleted strain could be partially restored by deletion of parB. Furthermore, the formation of regularly spaced ParB complexes, which is a prerequisite for proper chromosome segregation and septation during the development of aerial hyphae, has been found to depend on TopA. We hypothesize that TopA is recruited to ParB complexes during sporulation, and its activity is required to resolve segregating chromosomes.
    Journal of bacteriology 08/2013; DOI:10.1128/JB.00798-13 · 2.69 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Prior to bacterial cell division, the ATP-dependent polymerization of the cytoskeletal protein, ParA, positions the newly replicated origin-proximal region of the chromosome by interacting with ParB complexes assembled on parS sites located close to the origin. During the formation of unigenomic spores from multi-genomic aerial hyphae compartments of Streptomyces coelicolor, ParA is developmentally triggered to form filaments along the hyphae; this promotes the accurate and synchronized segregation of tens of chromosomes into prespore compartments. Here, we show that in addition to being a segregation protein, ParA also interacts with the polarity protein, Scy, which is a component of the tip-organizing centre that controls tip growth. Scy recruits ParA to the hyphal tips and regulates ParA polymerization. These results are supported by the phenotype of a strain with a mutant form of ParA that uncouples ParA polymerization from Scy. We suggest that the ParA-Scy interaction coordinates the transition from hyphal elongation to sporulation.
    Open Biology 03/2013; 3(3):130006. DOI:10.1098/rsob.130006 · 4.56 Impact Factor
  • Marcin Szafran, Jolanta Zakrzewska-Czerwińska, Dagmara Jakimowicz
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    ABSTRACT: The bacterial chromosome is composed of topologically independent domains, whose spatial organization is controlled by enzymes called topoisomerases. Topology maintenance is crucial in many important cellular processes such as replication, transcription and recombination. Moreover, the role of chromosome topology in adaptation of bacteria to environmental changes and, in the case of pathogenic strains, in their virulence was described. In recent years higher numbers of pathogenic strains resistant to antibiotic treatment have been noticed. In this paper we present the current state of knowledge about the structure and cellular functions of bacterial topoisomerases IA. In particular, we discuss the potential use of these enzymes as new targets for antibacterial compounds.
    Postępy Higieny i Medycyny Doświadczalnej (Advances in Hygiene and Experimental Medicine) 01/2013; 67:130-42. DOI:10.5604/17322693.1038352 · 0.63 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Mycobacteria are among the clinically most important pathogens, but still not much is known about the mechanisms of their cell cycle control. Previous studies suggested that the genes encoding ParA and ParB (ATPase and DNA binding protein, respectively, required for active chromosome segregation) may be essential in M.tuberculosis. Further research has demonstrated that a M.smegmatis parB deletion mutant was viable but exhibited a chromosome segregation defect. Here, we address the question if ParA is required for the growth of M.smegmatis, and which cell cycle processes it affects. Our data show that parA may be deleted, but its deletion leads to growth inhibition and severe disturbances of chromosome segregation and septum positioning. Similar defects are also caused by ParA overproduction. EGFP-ParA localises as pole-associated complexes connected with a patch of fluorescence accompanying the two ParB complexes. Observed aberrations in the number and positioning of ParB complexes in the parA deletion mutant, indicate that ParA is required for the proper localisation of the ParB complexes. Furthermore, it is shown that ParA co-localises and interacts with the polar growth determinant Wag31 (DivIVA homologue). Our results demonstrate that, mycobacterial ParA mediates chromosome segregation and coordinates it with cell division and elongation.
    Molecular Microbiology 01/2013; 87(5). DOI:10.1111/mmi.12146 · 5.03 Impact Factor
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    Rafal Donczew, Christoph Weigel, Rudi Lurz, Jolanta Zakrzewska-Czerwinska, Anna Zawilak-Pawlik
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    ABSTRACT: Binding of the DnaA protein to oriC leads to DNA melting within the DNA unwinding element (DUE) and initiates replication of the bacterial chromosome. Helicobacter pylori oriC was previously identified as a region localized upstream of dnaA and containing a cluster of DnaA boxes bound by DnaA protein with a high affinity. However, no unwinding within the oriC sequence has been detected. Comprehensive in silico analysis presented in this work allowed us to identify an additional region (oriC2), separated from the original one (oriC1) by the dnaA gene. DnaA specifically binds both regions, but DnaA-dependent DNA unwinding occurs only within oriC2. Surprisingly, oriC2 is bound exclusively as supercoiled DNA, which directly shows the importance of the DNA topology in DnaA-oriC interactions, similarly as previously presented only for initiator-origin interactions in Archaea and some Eukaryota. We conclude that H. pylori oriC exhibits bipartite structure, being the first such origin discovered in a Gram-negative bacterium. The H. pylori mode of initiator-oriC interactions, with the loop formation between the subcomplexes of the discontinuous origin, resembles those discovered in Bacillus subtilis chromosome and in many plasmids, which might suggest a similar way of controlling initiation of replication.
    Nucleic Acids Research 08/2012; 40(19):9647-60. DOI:10.1093/nar/gks742 · 9.11 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Mycobacterium tuberculosis, the pathogen that causes tuberculosis, presumably utilizes fatty acids as a major carbon source during infection within the host. Metabolism of even-chain-length fatty acids yields acetyl-CoA, whereas metabolism of odd-chain-length fatty acids additionally yields propionyl-CoA. Utilization of these compounds by tubercle bacilli requires functional glyoxylate and methylcitrate cycles, respectively. Enzymes involved in both pathways are essential for M. tuberculosis viability and persistence during growth on fatty acids. However, little is known about regulatory factors responsible for adjusting the expression of genes encoding these enzymes to particular growth conditions. Here, we characterized the novel role of PrpR as a transcription factor that is directly involved in regulating genes encoding the key enzymes of methylcitrate (methylcitrate dehydratase [PrpD] and methylcitrate synthase [PrpC]) and glyoxylate (isocitrate lyase [Icl1]) cycles. Using cell-free systems and intact cells, we demonstrated an interaction of PrpR protein with prpDC and icl1 promoter regions and identified a consensus sequence recognized by PrpR. Moreover, we showed that an M. tuberculosis prpR-deletion strain exhibits impaired growth in vitro on propionate as the sole carbon source. Real-time quantitative reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction confirmed that PrpR acts as a transcriptional activator of prpDC and icl1 genes when propionate is the main carbon source. Similar results were also obtained for a non-pathogenic Mycobacterium smegmatis strain. Additionally, we found that ramB, a prpR paralog that controls the glyoxylate cycle, is negatively regulated by PrpR. Our data demonstrate that PrpR is essential for the utilization of odd-chain-length fatty acids by tubercle bacilli. Since PrpR also acts as a ramB repressor, our findings suggest that it plays a key role in regulating expression of enzymes involved in both glyoxylate and methylcitrate pathways.
    PLoS ONE 08/2012; 7(8):e43651. DOI:10.1371/journal.pone.0043651 · 3.53 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: We report the draft genome sequence of the human pathogen Streptomyces somaliensis (DSM 40738), a pathogen within a genus of largely saprophytic organisms. S. somaliensis causes severe and debilitating deep tissue and bone infections. The genome sequence is deposited in DDBJ/EMBL/GenBank with the accession number AJJM01000000.
    Journal of bacteriology 07/2012; 194(13):3544-5. DOI:10.1128/JB.00534-12 · 2.69 Impact Factor

Publication Stats

1k Citations
285.66 Total Impact Points


  • 2015
    • University of Oxford
      Oxford, England, United Kingdom
  • 2008–2015
    • University of Wroclaw
      • • Faculty of Biotechnology
      • • Laboratory of Molecular Microbiology
      Vrotslav, Lower Silesian Voivodeship, Poland
  • 2013–2014
    • Wyższa Szkoła Handlowa we Wrocławiu
      Vrotslav, Lower Silesian Voivodeship, Poland
  • 1987–2014
    • Polish Academy of Sciences
      • Ludwik Hirszfeld Institute of Immunology and Experimental Therapy
      Warszawa, Masovian Voivodeship, Poland
  • 2012
    • University of Khartoum
      Al Kharţūm, Khartoum State, Sudan
  • 2000–2007
    • Instytut Immunologii i Terapii Doświadczalnej im. Ludwika Hirszfelda
      Vrotslav, Lower Silesian Voivodeship, Poland
    • University of Gdansk
      Danzig, Pomeranian Voivodeship, Poland
  • 2006
    • Institut Pasteur
      Lutetia Parisorum, Île-de-France, France
  • 2002–2006
    • John Innes Centre
      • Department of Molecular Microbiology
      Norwich, England, United Kingdom
    • Max Planck Institute for Molecular Genetics
      Berlín, Berlin, Germany
  • 2003
    • Newcastle University
      • School of Biology
      Newcastle-on-Tyne, England, United Kingdom
  • 1997
    • Oferta Syngen Biotech
      Vrotslav, Lower Silesian Voivodeship, Poland
  • 1992
    • Universität Osnabrück
      • FB 5 Biologie/Chemie
      Osnabrück, Lower Saxony, Germany
  • 1991
    • The Newcastle upon Tyne Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust
      • Department of Microbiology
      Newcastle-on-Tyne, England, United Kingdom