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  • 1
    ISSN: 1365-2958
    Source: Blackwell Publishing Journal Backfiles 1879-2005
    Topics: Biology , Medicine
    Notes: Pseudomonas aeruginosa, an opportunistic human pathogen, is a major causative agent of mortality and morbidity in immunocompromised individuals and those with cystic fibrosis (CF). In CF patients, the secretion of abnormally high amounts of mucus into the airways contributes to their susceptibility to infection by P. aeruginosa. To identify virulence genes of P. aeruginosa that are important in infection of CF patients, an in vivo selection system (IVET) was used to identify promoters that are specifically inducible by respiratory mucus derived from CF patients. Three genetic loci that are highly inducible by the mucus were identified. One of them is a well-characterized virulence gene (fptA), encoding the receptor for pyochelin, which is a P. aeruginosa iron siderophore. Induction of the fptA gene by mucus is suppressed by the addition of exogenous iron, demonstrating that the mucus is an iron chelator and generates an iron-deficient environment in CF lungs. Therefore, as a part of the host-defence mechanism, the mucus could also be responsible for induction of iron-regulated virulence factors of bacterial pathogens. The second locus, np20, encodes a peptide that shares sequence homology to a number of transcriptional regulators. An identical locus was previously identified to be inducible in vivo during infection of mice and was shown to be important in bacterial virulence in a neutropenic-mouse infection model. The third locus, designated migA (mucus inducible gene), was sequenced and found to encode a 299-amino-acid peptide which is homologous to glycosyltransferases of other bacteria, and is involved in the biosynthesis of lipopolysaccharides or exopolysaccharides. Inducibilities of the np20 and migA genes are not affected by iron and the exact nature of the inducing signals in the mucus is not known. The possible implications of the migA inducibility by respiratory mucus is discussed in relation to the P. aeruginosa infection in CF.
    Type of Medium: Electronic Resource
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  • 2
    ISSN: 1365-2958
    Source: Blackwell Publishing Journal Backfiles 1879-2005
    Topics: Biology , Medicine
    Notes: The single polar flagellum of Pseudomonas aeruginosa is an important virulence and colonization factor of this opportunistic pathogen. In this study, the annotation of the genes belonging to the fla regulon was updated and their organization was analysed in strains PAK and PAO1, representative type-a and type-b strains of P. aeruginosa respectively. The flagellar genes are clustered in three non-contiguous regions of the chromosome. A polymorphic locus flanked by flgJ and fleQ in Region I contains a glycosylation island in PAK. The expression and ordered assembly of the complex multicomponent flagellum is intricately regulated. Dedicated flagellar genes fleQ, fleS, fleR, fliA, flgM and fleN encode proteins that participate in the regulation of the flagellar transcriptional circuit. In addition, expression of the flagellum is coordinately regulated with other P. aeruginosa virulence factors by the alternative sigma factor σ54, encoded by rpoN. In order to gain insight into the hierarchical regulation of flagellar genes, deletion mutations were constructed in fleQ, fleR, fliA and rpoN. The transcriptional impact of these mutations was examined by transcriptional profiling using a P. aeruginosa whole genome microarray. Analysis of the transcriptomes generated for each of these mutants indicates a four-tiered (Classes I-IV) hierarchy of transcriptional regulation. Class I genes are constitutively expressed and include the transcriptional regulator fleQ and the alternative sigma factor fliA (σ28). Class II genes including fleSR, encoding a two-component regulatory system require FleQ and RpoN (σ54) for their transcriptional activation. Class III genes are positively regulated by the activated response regulator FleR in concert with RpoN. The transcription of Class IV genes is dependent on the availability of free FliA following the export of the FliA specific antisigma factor FlgM through the basal body rod-hook structure (assembled from Class II and III gene products). Two previously uncharacterized genes, which are coordinately regulated with known flagellar genes have been identified by genome-wide analysis and their role in flagellar biogenesis was analysed.
    Type of Medium: Electronic Resource
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