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  • 1
    Language: English
    In: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 23 November 2010, Vol.107(47), pp.20435-40
    Description: The abundant class of bacterial Hfq-associated small regulatory RNAs (sRNAs) parallels animal microRNAs in their ability to control multiple genes at the posttranscriptional level by short and imperfect base pairing. In contrast to the universal length and seed pairing mechanism of microRNAs, the sRNAs are heterogeneous in size and structure, and how they regulate multiple targets is not well understood. This paper provides evidence that a 5' located sRNA domain is a critical element for the control of a large posttranscriptional regulon. We show that the conserved 5' end of RybB sRNA recognizes multiple mRNAs of Salmonella outer membrane proteins by ≥7-bp Watson-Crick pairing. When fused to an unrelated sRNA, the 5' domain is sufficient to guide target mRNA degradation and maintain σ(E)-dependent envelope homeostasis. RybB sites in mRNAs are often conserved and flanked by 3' adenosine. They are found in a wide sequence window ranging from the upstream untranslated region to the deep coding sequence, indicating that some targets might be repressed at the level of translation, whereas others are repressed primarily by mRNA destabilization. Autonomous 5' domains seem more common in sRNAs than appreciated and might improve the design of synthetic RNA regulators.
    Keywords: Bacterial Outer Membrane Proteins -- Metabolism ; Gene Expression Regulation, Bacterial -- Genetics ; RNA, Messenger -- Metabolism ; Regulatory Sequences, Ribonucleic Acid -- Genetics ; Regulon -- Genetics ; Salmonella -- Genetics
    ISSN: 00278424
    E-ISSN: 1091-6490
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  • 2
    Language: English
    In: Cell, 11 April 2013, Vol.153(2), pp.426-437
    Description: Glucose homeostasis is strictly controlled in all domains of life. Bacteria that are unable to balance intracellular sugar levels and deal with potentially toxic phosphosugars cease growth and risk being outcompeted. Here, we identify the conserved haloacid dehalogenase (HAD)-like enzyme YigL as the previously hypothesized phosphatase for detoxification of phosphosugars and reveal that its synthesis is activated by an Hfq-dependent small RNA in . We show that the glucose-6-P-responsive small RNA SgrS activates YigL synthesis in a translation-independent fashion by the selective stabilization of a decay intermediate of the dicistronic messenger RNA (mRNA). Intriguingly, the major endoribonuclease RNase E, previously known to function together with small RNAs to degrade mRNA targets, is also essential for this process of mRNA activation. The exploitation of and targeted interference with regular RNA turnover described here may constitute a general route for small RNAs to rapidly activate both coding and noncoding genes. ► The bacterial small RNA SgrS posttranscriptionally activates the synthesis of YigL ► YigL is the previously hypothesized phosphatase that prevents phosphosugar toxicity ► SgrS activates yigL by a translation-independent mRNA-stabilization mechanism ► SgrS stabilizes an intermediate in the yigL mRNA decay pathway YigL, a long-sought bacterial phosphatase, regulates glucose-6-phosphate levels. A small regulatory RNA upregulates YigL synthesis by base pairing with the coding sequence of the preceding gene to interfere with endonucleolytic yigL mRNA decay.
    Keywords: Biology
    ISSN: 0092-8674
    E-ISSN: 1097-4172
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  • 3
    Language: English
    In: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 25 August 2015, Vol.112(34), pp.E4772-81
    Description: Horizontal gene transfer via plasmid conjugation is a major driving force in microbial evolution but constitutes a complex process that requires synchronization with the physiological state of the host bacteria. Although several host transcription factors are known to regulate plasmid-borne transfer genes, RNA-based regulatory circuits for host-plasmid communication remain unknown. We describe a posttranscriptional mechanism whereby the Hfq-dependent small RNA, RprA, inhibits transfer of pSLT, the virulence plasmid of Salmonella enterica. RprA employs two separate seed-pairing domains to activate the mRNAs of both the sigma-factor σ(S) and the RicI protein, a previously uncharacterized membrane protein here shown to inhibit conjugation. Transcription of ricI requires σ(S) and, together, RprA and σ(S) orchestrate a coherent feedforward loop with AND-gate logic to tightly control the activation of RicI synthesis. RicI interacts with the conjugation apparatus protein TraV and limits plasmid transfer under membrane-damaging conditions. To our knowledge, this study reports the first small RNA-controlled feedforward loop relying on posttranscriptional activation of two independent targets and an unexpected role of the conserved RprA small RNA in controlling extrachromosomal DNA transfer.
    Keywords: Hfq ; Rpra ; Feedforward Control ; Plasmid Conjugation ; Srna ; Chromosomes, Bacterial ; DNA, Bacterial -- Genetics ; RNA, Bacterial -- Genetics ; Salmonella -- Genetics
    ISSN: 00278424
    E-ISSN: 1091-6490
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  • 4
    Language: English
    In: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 2011, Vol.108(31), pp.12875-12880
    Description: The Escherichia coli σE envelope stress response monitors and repairs the outer membrane, a function central to the life of Gram-negative bacteria. The σE stress response was characterized as a single-tier activation network comprised of ; p. 12875-12880.
    Keywords: Regulon ; Porins ; Messenger Rna ; Homeostasis ; Non-Coding Rna ; Stress Response ; Labor ; Viability ; Mica ; Gram-Negative Bacteria ; Escherichia Coli ; Gene Activation ; Transactivators
    ISSN: 0027-8424
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  • 5
    Language: English
    In: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 17 February 2015, Vol.112(7), pp.E766-75
    Description: Quorum sensing (QS) is a process of cell-to-cell communication that enables bacteria to transition between individual and collective lifestyles. QS controls virulence and biofilm formation in Vibrio cholerae, the causative agent of cholera disease. Differential RNA sequencing (RNA-seq) of wild-type V. cholerae and a locked low-cell-density QS-mutant strain identified 7,240 transcriptional start sites with ∼ 47% initiated in the antisense direction. A total of 107 of the transcripts do not appear to encode proteins, suggesting they specify regulatory RNAs. We focused on one such transcript that we name VqmR. vqmR is located upstream of the vqmA gene encoding a DNA-binding transcription factor. Mutagenesis and microarray analyses demonstrate that VqmA activates vqmR transcription, that vqmR encodes a regulatory RNA, and VqmR directly controls at least eight mRNA targets including the rtx (repeats in toxin) toxin genes and the vpsT transcriptional regulator of biofilm production. We show that VqmR inhibits biofilm formation through repression of vpsT. Together, these data provide to our knowledege the first global annotation of the transcriptional start sites in V. cholerae and highlight the importance of posttranscriptional regulation for collective behaviors in this human pathogen.
    Keywords: RNA-Seq ; Vibrio Cholerae ; Biofilm ; Quorum Sensing ; Srna ; Biofilms ; Sequence Analysis, RNA ; RNA, Viral -- Genetics ; Vibrio Cholerae -- Genetics
    ISSN: 00278424
    E-ISSN: 1091-6490
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  • 6
    Language: English
    In: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 27 March 2012, Vol.109(13), pp.E757-64
    Description: SgrS RNA is a model for the large class of Hfq-associated small RNAs that act to posttranscriptionally regulate bacterial mRNAs. The function of SgrS is well-characterized in nonpathogenic Escherichia coli, where it was originally shown to counteract glucose-phosphate stress by acting as a repressor of the ptsG mRNA, which encodes the major glucose transporter. We have discovered additional SgrS targets in Salmonella Typhimurium, a pathogen related to E. coli that recently acquired one-quarter of all genes by horizontal gene transfer. We show that the conserved short seed region of SgrS that recognizes ptsG was recruited to target the Salmonella-specific sopD mRNA of a secreted virulence protein. The SgrS-sopD interaction is exceptionally selective; we find that sopD2 mRNA, whose gene arose from sopD duplication during Salmonella evolution, is deaf to SgrS because of a nonproductive G-U pair in the potential SgrS-sopD2 RNA duplex vs. G-C in SgrS-sopD. In other words, SgrS discriminates the two virulence factor mRNAs at the level of a single hydrogen bond. Our study suggests that bacterial pathogens use their large suites of conserved Hfq-associated regulators to integrate horizontally acquired genes into existing posttranscriptional networks, just as conserved transcription factors are recruited to tame foreign genes at the DNA level. The results graphically illustrate the importance of the seed regions of bacterial small RNAs to select new targets with high fidelity and suggest that target predictions must consider all or none decisions by individual seed nucleotides.
    Keywords: Phylogeny ; Base Pairing -- Genetics ; Gene Transfer, Horizontal -- Genetics ; RNA, Bacterial -- Genetics ; Salmonella -- Genetics
    ISSN: 00278424
    E-ISSN: 1091-6490
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  • 7
    Language: English
    In: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 02 August 2011, Vol.108(31), pp.12875-80
    Description: The Escherichia coli σ(E) envelope stress response monitors and repairs the outer membrane, a function central to the life of Gram-negative bacteria. The σ(E) stress response was characterized as a single-tier activation network comprised of ~100 genes, including the MicA and RybB noncoding sRNAs. These highly expressed sRNAs were thought to carry out the specialized function of halting de novo synthesis of several abundant porins when envelope homeostasis was perturbed. Using a systematic target profiling and validation approach we discovered that MicA and RybB are each global mRNA repressors of both distinct and shared targets, and that the two sRNAs constitute a posttranscriptional repression arm whose regulatory scope rivals that of the protein-based σ(E) activation arm. Intriguingly, porin mRNAs constitute only ~1/3 of all targets and new nonporin targets predict roles for MicA and RybB in crosstalk with other regulatory responses. This work also provides an example of evolutionarily unrelated sRNAs that are coinduced and bind the same targets, but at different sites. Our finding that expression of either MicA or RybB sRNA protects the cell from the loss of viability experienced when σ(E) activity is inadequate illustrates the importance of the posttranscriptional repression arm of the response. σ(E) is a paradigm of a single-tier stress response with a clear division of labor in which highly expressed noncoding RNAs (MicA, RybB) endow a transcriptional factor intrinsically restricted to gene activation (σ(E)) with the opposite repressor function.
    Keywords: Escherichia Coli Proteins -- Genetics ; RNA, Small Untranslated -- Genetics ; Regulon -- Genetics ; Sigma Factor -- Genetics
    ISSN: 00278424
    E-ISSN: 1091-6490
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  • 8
    In: Molecular Microbiology, November 2011, Vol.82(4), pp.797-806
    Description: Founded on ground‐breaking discoveries such as the operon model by Jacob and Monod more than 50 years ago, molecular microbiology is now one of the most vibrant disciplines of the life sciences. The first Mol Micro Meeting Würzburg (‘M3W’) hosted more than 160 scientists from 14 countries to exchange their latest ideas in this field of research. Divided into the four main sessions Gene Regulation, Pathogenesis, Microbial Cell Biology and Signalling, the conference provided insight into current advances and future goals and challenges.
    Keywords: Microbiology ; Life Sciences ; Scientists ; Bacteria;
    ISSN: 0950-382X
    E-ISSN: 1365-2958
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  • 9
    Language: English
    In: Cell Host & Microbe, 2010, Vol.8(1), pp.116-127
    Description: Bacteria constitute a large and diverse class of infectious agents, causing devastating diseases in humans, animals, and plants. Our understanding of gene expression control, which forms the basis for successful prevention and treatment strategies, has until recently neglected the many roles that regulatory RNAs might have in bacteria. In recent years, several such regulators have been found to facilitate host-microbe interactions and act as key switches between saprophytic and pathogenic lifestyles. This review covers the versatile regulatory RNA mechanisms employed by bacterial pathogens and highlights the dynamic interplay between riboregulation and virulence factor expression.
    Keywords: Biology
    ISSN: 1931-3128
    E-ISSN: 1934-6069
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  • 10
    Language: English
    In: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 03 October 2017, Vol.114(40), pp.E8498-E8507
    Description: Successful pathogens use complex signaling mechanisms to monitor their environment and reprogram global gene expression during specific stages of infection. Group A (GAS) is a major human pathogen that causes significant disease burden worldwide. A secreted cysteine protease known as streptococcal pyrogenic exotoxin B (SpeB) is a key virulence factor that is produced abundantly during infection and is critical for GAS pathogenesis. Although identified nearly a century ago, the molecular basis for growth phase control of gene expression remains unknown. We have discovered that GAS uses a previously unknown peptide-mediated intercellular signaling system to control SpeB production, alter global gene expression, and enhance virulence. GAS produces an eight-amino acid leaderless peptide [SpeB-inducing peptide (SIP)] during high cell density and uses the secreted peptide for cell-to-cell signaling to induce population-wide expression. The SIP signaling pathway includes peptide secretion, reimportation into the cytosol, and interaction with the intracellular global gene regulator Regulator of Protease B (RopB), resulting in SIP-dependent modulation of DNA binding and regulatory activity of RopB. Notably, SIP signaling causes differential expression of ∼14% of GAS core genes. Several genes that encode toxins and other virulence genes that enhance pathogen dissemination and infection are significantly up-regulated. Using three mouse infection models, we show that the SIP signaling pathway is active during infection and contributes significantly to GAS pathogenesis at multiple host anatomic sites. Together, our results delineate the molecular mechanisms involved in a previously undescribed virulence regulatory pathway of an important human pathogen and suggest new therapeutic strategies.
    Keywords: Speb ; Streptococcus Pyogenes ; Leaderless Peptide ; Quorum Sensing ; Virulence Regulation ; Virulence ; Bacterial Proteins -- Metabolism ; Exotoxins -- Metabolism ; Gene Expression Regulation, Bacterial -- Drug Effects ; Peptide Fragments -- Pharmacology ; Streptococcal Infections -- Microbiology ; Streptococcus Pyogenes -- Pathogenicity
    ISSN: 00278424
    E-ISSN: 1091-6490
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