Rika Etchuya

Nara Women's University, Nara, Nara, Japan

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Publications (3)8.35 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: Aquiring new genetic traits by lateral gene transfer is a bacterial strategy for environment adaptation. We previously showed that Escherichia coli could laterally transmit non-conjugative plasmids in co-cultures containing strains with and without the plasmid. In this study, using the Keio collection, a comprehensive library of E. coli knock-out mutants for non-essential genes, we screened for genes responsible for repressing cell-to-cell plasmid transfer in recipient cells. By stepwise screening, we identified 55 'transfer-up' mutants that exhibited approximately 2- to 30-fold increased activities. We confirmed plasmid acquisition by these 'up' mutants and revealed that there were no significant changes in antibiotic resistance in the original Keio strains. The presumed functions of these gene products covered a wide range of activities, including metabolism and synthesis, transport, transcription or translation and others. Two competence-gene homologues (ybaV and yhiR) were identified from among these genes. The presumed localizations of these 55 gene products were estimated to be 34 cytoplasmic proteins, 20 in or around the cell surface and 1 unknown location. Our results suggest that these 55 genes may be involved in repressing plasmid uptake during cell-to-cell plasmid transfer.
    Biochemical and Biophysical Research Communications 11/2012; · 2.41 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Acquisition of new genetic traits by horizontal gene transfer is a bacterial strategy for adaptation to the environment. We previously showed that Escherichia coli can transmit non-conjugative plasmids laterally in a co-culture containing strains with and without the plasmid. In this study, using the Keio collection, a comprehensive library of E. coli knock-out mutants for non-essential genes, we screened for genes responsible for the execution and promotion of cell-to-cell plasmid transfer in recipient cells. By stepwise screening of 'transfer-down' mutants, two essential genes and six promoting genes were obtained. One of the essential genes was priA, which is involved in DNA replication. This priA mutant was also unable to be transformed by artificial transformation methods, probably due to the deficiency of the plasmid maintenance function. The other essential gene was rodZ (yfgA), a gene involved in the regulation of rod-shaped structure of E. coli cells. This rodZ mutant was transformable by all three methods of artificial transformation tested, suggesting that this gene is essential for cell-to-cell plasmid transfer but not for artificial transformation. These are the first data that suggest that rodZ plays an essential role in DNA acquisition.
    Biochemical and Biophysical Research Communications 04/2012; 421(1):119-23. · 2.41 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Recently, we discovered a novel phenomenon, "cell-to-cell transformation" by which non-conjugative plasmids are transmitted horizontally in co-cultures of Escherichia coli F(-) strains. In this study, we aimed to identify the DNA element responsible for the high cell-to-cell transformability of pHSG299. By transplanting pHSG299 DNA fragments into pHSG399, a plasmid showing low transformability, we discovered that a specific 88 bp fragment of pHSG299 significantly promoted pHSG399 transformability. Although several short motif-like repetitive sequences (6-10 bp) were present in the 88 bp sequence, no known DNA motifs were recognized, suggesting that this 88 bp sequence (cell-to-cell transformation promoting sequence, CTPS; Accession number: AB634455) is a novel DNA element.
    FEBS letters 05/2011; 585(14):2223-8. · 3.54 Impact Factor