C A Loshon

UConn Health Center, Farmington, CT, United States

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Publications (25)66.8 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: To determine roles of cortex lytic enzymes (CLEs) in Bacillus megaterium spore germination. Genes for B. megaterium CLEs CwlJ and SleB were inactivated and effects of loss of one or both on germination were assessed. Loss of CwlJ or SleB did not prevent completion of germination with agents that activate the spore's germinant receptors, but loss of CwlJ slowed the release of dipicolinic acid (DPA). Loss of both CLEs also did not prevent release of DPA and glutamate during germination with KBr. However, cwlJ sleB spores had decreased viability, and could not complete germination. Loss of CwlJ eliminated spore germination with Ca2+ chelated to DPA (Ca-DPA), but loss of CwlJ and SleB did not affect DPA release in dodecylamine germination. CwlJ and SleB play redundant roles in cortex degradation during B. megaterium spore germination, and CwlJ accelerates DPA release and is essential for Ca-DPA germination. The roles of these CLEs are similar in germination of B. megaterium and Bacillus subtilis spores. These results indicate that redundant roles of CwlJ and SleB in cortex degradation during germination are similar in spores of Bacillus species; consequently, inhibition of these enzymes will prevent germination of Bacillus spores.
    Journal of Applied Microbiology 04/2009; 107(1):318-28. · 2.20 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Spores of Bacillus subtilis spoVF strains that cannot synthesize dipicolinic acid (DPA) but take it up during sporulation were prepared in medium with various DPA concentrations, and the germination and viability of these spores as well as the DPA content in individual spores were measured. Levels of some other small molecules in DPA-less spores were also measured. These studies have allowed the following conclusions. (i) Spores with no DPA or low DPA levels that lack either the cortex-lytic enzyme (CLE) SleB or the receptors that respond to nutrient germinants could be isolated but were unstable and spontaneously initiated early steps in spore germination. (ii) Spores that lacked SleB and nutrient germinant receptors and also had low DPA levels were more stable. (iii) Spontaneous germination of spores with no DPA or low DPA levels was at least in part via activation of SleB. (iv) The other redundant CLE, CwlJ, was activated only by the release of high levels of DPA from spores. (v) Low levels of DPA were sufficient for the viability of spores that lacked most alpha/beta-type small, acid-soluble spore proteins. (vi) DPA levels accumulated in spores prepared in low-DPA-containing media varied greatly between individual spores, in contrast to the presence of more homogeneous DPA levels in individual spores made in media with high DPA concentrations. (vii) At least the great majority of spores of several spoVF strains that contained no DPA also lacked other major spore small molecules and had gone through some of the early reactions in spore germination.
    Journal of bacteriology 08/2008; 190(14):4798-807. · 3.94 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Bacteria of various Bacillus species are able to grow in media with very high osmotic strength in part due to the accumulation of low-molecular-weight osmolytes such as glycine betaine (GB). Cells of Bacillus species grown in rich and minimal media contained low levels of GB, but GB levels were 4- to 60-fold higher in cells grown in media with high salt. GB levels in Bacillus subtilis cells grown in minimal medium were increased approximately 7-fold by GB in the medium and 60-fold by GB plus high salt. GB was present in spores of Bacillus species prepared in media with or without high salt but at lower levels than in comparable growing cells. With spores prepared in media with high salt, GB levels were highest in B. subtilis spores and > or =20-fold lower in B. cereus and B. megaterium spores. Although GB levels in B. subtilis spores were elevated 15- to 30-fold by GB plus high salt in sporulation media, GB levels did not affect spore resistance. GB levels were similar in wild-type B. subtilis spores and spores that lacked major small, acid-soluble spore proteins but were much lower in spores that lacked dipicolinic acid.
    Journal of Bacteriology 04/2006; 188(8):3153-8. · 3.19 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Bacterial spores of various Bacillus species are impermeable or exhibit low permeability to many compounds that readily penetrate germinated spores, including methylamine. We now show that a lipid probe in the inner membrane of dormant spores of Bacillus megaterium and Bacillus subtilis is largely immobile, as measured by fluorescence redistribution after photobleaching, but becomes free to diffuse laterally upon spore germination. The lipid immobility in and the slow permeation of methylamine through the inner membrane of dormant spores may be due to a significant (1.3- to 1.6-fold) apparent reduction of the membrane surface area in the dormant spore relative to that in the germinated spore, but is not due to the dormant spore's high levels of dipicolinic acid and divalent cations.
    Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 06/2004; 101(20):7733-8. · 9.81 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: To determine the mechanisms of killing of Bacillus subtilis spores by ethanol or strong acid or alkali. Killing of B. subtilis spores by ethanol or strong acid or alkali was not through DNA damage and the spore coats did not protect spores against these agents. Spores treated with ethanol or acid released their dipicolinic acid (DPA) in parallel with spore killing and the core wet density of ethanol- or acid-killed spores fell to a value close to that for untreated spores lacking DPA. The core regions of spores killed by these two agents were stained by nucleic acid stains that do not penetrate into the core of untreated spores and acid-killed spores appeared to have ruptured. Spores killed by these two agents also did not germinate in nutrient and non-nutrient germinants and were not recovered by lysozyme treatment. Spores killed by alkali did not lose their DPA, did not exhibit a decrease in their core wet density and their cores were not stained by nucleic acid stains. Alkali-killed spores released their DPA upon initiation of spore germination, but did not initiate metabolism and degraded their cortex very poorly. However, spores apparently killed by alkali were recovered by lysozyme treatment. The data suggest that spore killing by ethanol and strong acid involves the disruption of a spore permeability barrier, while spore killing by strong alkali is due to the inactivation of spore cortex lytic enzymes. The results provide further information on the mechanisms of spore killing by various chemicals.
    Journal of Applied Microbiology 02/2002; 92(2):362-75. · 2.20 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Aims: To determine the mechanisms of killing of Bacillus subtilis spores by ethanol or strong acid or alkali.Methods and Results: Killing of B. subtilis spores by ethanol or strong acid or alkali was not through DNA damage and the spore coats did not protect spores against these agents. Spores treated with ethanol or acid released their dipicolinic acid (DPA) in parallel with spore killing and the core wet density of ethanol- or acid-killed spores fell to a value close to that for untreated spores lacking DPA. The core regions of spores killed by these two agents were stained by nucleic acid stains that do not penetrate into the core of untreated spores and acid-killed spores appeared to have ruptured. Spores killed by these two agents also did not germinate in nutrient and non-nutrient germinants and were not recovered by lysozyme treatment. Spores killed by alkali did not lose their DPA, did not exhibit a decrease in their core wet density and their cores were not stained by nucleic acid stains. Alkali-killed spores released their DPA upon initiation of spore germination, but did not initiate metabolism and degraded their cortex very poorly. However, spores apparently killed by alkali were recovered by lysozyme treatment.Conclusions: The data suggest that spore killing by ethanol and strong acid involves the disruption of a spore permeability barrier, while spore killing by strong alkali is due to the inactivation of spore cortex lytic enzymes.Significance and Impact of the Study: The results provide further information on the mechanisms of spore killing by various chemicals.
    Journal of Applied Microbiology 01/2002; 92(2):362 - 375. · 2.20 Impact Factor
  • C A Loshon, E Melly, B Setlow, P Setlow
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    ABSTRACT: To determine the mechanism whereby the new disinfectant Sterilox kills spores of Bacillus subtilis. Bacillus subtilis spores were readily killed by Sterilox and spore resistance to this agent was due in large part to the spore coats. Spore killing by Sterilox was not through DNA damage, released essentially no spore dipicolinic acid and Sterilox-killed spores underwent the early steps in spore germination, including dipicolinic acid release, cortex degradation and initiation of metabolism. However, these germinated spores never swelled and many had altered permeability properties. We suggest that Sterilox treatment kills dormant spores by oxidatively modifying the inner membrane of the spores such that this membrane becomes non-functional in the germinated spore leading to spore death. This work provides information on the mechanism of spore resistance to and spore killing by a new disinfectant.
    Journal of Applied Microbiology 01/2002; 91(6):1051-8. · 2.20 Impact Factor
  • C. A. Loshon, E. Melly, B. Setlow, P. Setlow
    Journal of Applied Microbiology - J APPL MICROBIOL. 01/2001; 91(6):1051-1058.
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    ABSTRACT: Treatment of wild-type spores of Bacillus subtilis with glutaraldehyde or an iodine-based disinfectant (Betadine) did not cause detectable mutagenesis, and spores (termed alpha-beta-) lacking the major DNA-protective alpha/beta-type, small, acid-soluble proteins (SASP) exhibited similar sensitivity to these agents. A recA mutation did not sensitize wild-type or alpha-beta- spores to Betadine or glutaraldehyde, nor did spore treatment with these agents result in significant expression of a recA-lacZ fusion when the treated spores germinated. Spore glutaraldehyde sensitivity was increased dramatically by removal of much spore coat protein, but this treatment had no effect on Betadine sensitivity. In contrast, nitrous acid treatment of wild-type and alpha-beta- spores caused significant mutagenesis, with alpha-beta- spores being much more sensitive to this agent. A recA mutation further sensitized both wild-type and alpha-beta- spores to nitrous acid, and there was significant expression of a recA-lacZ fusion when nitrous acid-treated spores germinated. These results indicate that: (a) nitrous acid kills B. subtilis spores at least in part by DNA damage, and alpha/beta-type SASP protect against this DNA damage; (b) killing of spores by glutaraldehyde or Betadine is not due to DNA damage; and (c) the spore coat protects spores against killing by glutaraldehyde but not Betadine. Further analysis also demonstrated that spores treated with nitrous acid still germinated normally, while those treated with glutaraldehyde or Betadine did not.
    Journal of Applied Microbiology 09/2000; 89(2):330-8. · 2.20 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: A Bacillus subtilis gene termed yhfR encodes the only B. subtilis protein with significant sequence similarity to 2, 3-diphosphoglycerate-dependent phosphoglycerate mutases (dPGM). This gene is expressed at a low level during growth and sporulation, but deletion of yhfR had no effect on growth, sporulation, or spore germination and outgrowth. YhfR was expressed in and partially purified from Escherichia coli but had little if any PGM activity and gave no detectable PGM activity in B. subtilis. These data indicate that B. subtilis does not require YhfR and most likely does not require a dPGM.
    Journal of Bacteriology 08/2000; 182(14):4121-3. · 3.19 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Treatment of wild-type spores of Bacillus subtilis with glutaraldehyde or an iodine-based disinfectant (Betadine) did not cause detectable mutagenesis, and spores (termed α–β–) lacking the major DNA-protective α/β-type, small, acid-soluble proteins (SASP) exhibited similar sensitivity to these agents. A recA mutation did not sensitize wild-type or α–β– spores to Betadine or glutaraldehyde, nor did spore treatment with these agents result in significant expression of a recA-lacZ fusion when the treated spores germinated. Spore glutaraldehyde sensitivity was increased dramatically by removal of much spore coat protein, but this treatment had no effect on Betadine sensitivity. In contrast, nitrous acid treatment of wild-type and α–β– spores caused significant mutagenesis, with α–β– spores being much more sensitive to this agent. A recA mutation further sensitized both wild-type and α–β– spores to nitrous acid, and there was significant expression of a recA-lacZ fusion when nitrous acid-treated spores germinated. These results indicate that: (a) nitrous acid kills B. subtilis spores at least in part by DNA damage, and α/β-type SASP protect against this DNA damage; (b) killing of spores by glutaraldehyde or Betadine is not due to DNA damage; and (c) the spore coat protects spores against killing by glutaraldehyde but not Betadine. Further analysis also demonstrated that spores treated with nitrous acid still germinated normally, while those treated with glutaraldehyde or Betadine did not.
    Journal of Applied Microbiology 07/2000; 89(2):330 - 338. · 2.20 Impact Factor
  • C A Loshon, P C Genest, B Setlow, P Setlow
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    ABSTRACT: Killing of wild-type spores of Bacillus subtilis with formaldehyde also caused significant mutagenesis; spores (termed alpha-beta-) lacking the two major alpha/beta-type small, acid-soluble spore proteins (SASP) were more sensitive to both formaldehyde killing and mutagenesis. A recA mutation sensitized both wild-type and alpha-beta- spores to formaldehyde treatment, which caused significant expression of a recA-lacZ fusion when the treated spores germinated. Formaldehyde also caused protein-DNA cross-linking in both wild-type and alpha-beta- spores. These results indicate that: (i) formaldehyde kills B. subtilis spores at least in part by DNA damage and (b) alpha/beta-type SASP protect against spore killing by formaldehyde, presumably by protecting spore DNA.
    Journal of Applied Microbiology 08/1999; 87(1):8-14. · 2.20 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The single sspE genes coding for gamma-type small, acid-soluble spore proteins (SASP) of three round-spore-forming bacteria, Bacillus aminovorans, Sporosarcina halophila and S. ureae, have been cloned and sequenced. While the deduced amino acid sequences of these three gamma-type SASP show clear homology to those from six Bacillus species that do not form round spores, there are no residues conserved completely among the 9 sequences known. In addition, the 139 residue B. aminovorans protein is 35 residues larger than any other while the 60 residue S. halophila protein is one of the smallest. These data suggest that the sspE genes have been under little selective pressure in recent evolutionary time.
    Biochimica et Biophysica Acta 04/1998; 1396(2):148-52. · 4.66 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The single sspE genes coding for γ-type small, acid-soluble spore proteins (SASP) of three round-spore-forming bacteria, Bacillus aminovorans, Sporosarcina halophila and S. ureae, have been cloned and sequenced. While the deduced amino acid sequences of these three γ-type SASP show clear homology to those from six Bacillus species that do not form round spores, there are no residues conserved completely among the 9 sequences known. In addition, the 139 residue B. aminovorans protein is 35 residues larger than any other while the 60 residue S. halophila protein is one of the smallest. These data suggest that the sspE genes have been under little selective pressure in recent evolutionary time.
    Biochimica et Biophysica Acta (BBA) - Gene Structure and Expression 03/1998; 1396(2):148–152. · 1.70 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The single sspE genes coding for γ-type small, acid-soluble spore proteins (SASP) of three round-spore-forming bacteria, Bacillus aminovorans, Sporosarcina halophila and S. ureae, have been cloned and sequenced. While the deduced amino acid sequences of these three γ-type SASP show clear homology to those from six Bacillus species that do not form round spores, there are no residues conserved completely among the 9 sequences known. In addition, the 139 residue B. aminovorans protein is 35 residues larger than any other while the 60 residue S. halophila protein is one of the smallest. These data suggest that the sspE genes have been under little selective pressure in recent evolutionary time.
    Biochimica Et Biophysica Acta-gene Structure and Expression - BBA-GENE STRUCT EXPRESS. 01/1998; 1396(2):148-152.
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    C A Loshon, P Kraus, B Setlow, P Setlow
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    ABSTRACT: Inactivation of the Bacillus subtilis sspF gene had no effect on sporulation, spore resistance, or germination in a wild-type strain or one lacking DNA protective alpha/beta-type small, acid-soluble proteins (SASP). Overexpression of SspF in wild-type spores or in spores lacking major alpha/beta-type SASP (alpha- beta- spores) had no effect on sporulation but slowed spore outgrowth and restored a small amount of UV and heat resistance to alpha- beta- spores. In vitro analyses showed that SspF is a DNA binding protein and is cleaved by the SASP-specific protease (GPR) at a site similar to that cleaved in alpha/beta-type SASP. SspF was also degraded during spore germination and outgrowth, and this degradation was initiated by GPR.
    Journal of Bacteriology 02/1997; 179(1):272-5. · 3.19 Impact Factor
  • C A Loshon, K E Beary, M Chander, P Setlow
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    ABSTRACT: The sspF gene (originally 0.3 kb) of Bacillus cereus and B. megaterium has been cloned and sequenced, and the predicted amino acid sequences of the gene products (SspF) compared to that of B. subtilis SspF. These proteins exhibit an average of 74% sequence identity across species, suggesting they may play some important role in either sporulation or the dormant spore.
    Gene 01/1995; 150(1):203-4. · 2.20 Impact Factor
  • C A Loshon, P Setlow
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    ABSTRACT: Dormant spores of Sporosarcina halophila and Sporosarcina ureae contained no detectable ATP, significant levels of ADP, even higher levels of AMP, and a large pool of 3-phosphoglyceric acid, similar to what is found in dormant spores of Bacillus and Clostridium species. Sporosarcina halophila and S. ureae spores also contained significant pools of free amino acids, in particular glutamic acid, as in the case with spores of Bacillus but not Clostridium species. Levels of monovalent and divalent inorganic cations were comparable in spores of Sporosarcina, Clostridium, and Bacillus species, and cation levels in spores of the slight halophile S. halophila were similar to those in S. ureae spores. These data suggest that levels of small molecules are generally similar in spores of all Gram-positive organisms, and further suggest that these levels reflect fundamental and conserved features of the sporulation process and dormant spores in these organisms. The data are also consistent with the proposed close evolutionary relationship between Bacillus and Sporosarcina species.
    Canadian Journal of Microbiology 03/1993; 39(2):259-62. · 1.20 Impact Factor
  • N G Magill, C A Loshon, P Setlow
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    ABSTRACT: Small, acid-soluble proteins (SASP) of both the alpha/beta- and gamma-type were present in spores of Sporosarcina ureae and S. halophila, and three genes encoding alpha/beta-type SASP in these species have been cloned and sequenced. The amino acid sequences of the Sporosarcina alpha/beta-type SASP are extremely homologous to those of Bacillus SASP, further indicative of the close evolutionary relationship between these genera.
    FEMS Microbiology Letters 12/1990; 60(3):293-7. · 2.05 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Four serine or threonine codons were introduced into a highly expressed Bacillus subtilis gene. The introduced codons were ones either common in highly expressed B. subtilis genes, or never used in such genes. Strikingly, the level and rate of expression of the modified genes containing either type of extra codons was identical. This suggests that in B. subtilis codon usage patterns may play little or no role in effecting the level of gene expression.
    FEMS Microbiology Letters 12/1989; 53(1-2):59-63. · 2.05 Impact Factor

Publication Stats

507 Citations
66.80 Total Impact Points

Institutions

  • 2002–2009
    • UConn Health Center
      • Department of Molecular, Microbial and Structural Biology
      Farmington, CT, United States
  • 2008
    • East Carolina University
      • Department of Physics
      North Carolina, United States
  • 1989–1997
    • University of Maryland Eastern Shore
      • Department of Natural Sciences
      Princess Anne, MD, United States