Enterococcus faecalis is an opportunistic pathogen responsible for nosocomial infections. Lipoproteins in Gram-positive bacteria are translocated across the plasma membrane and anchored by the fatty acid group. They perform critical roles, with some described as virulence determinants. The aim of this study was to explore the roles of E. faecalis lipoproteins in the stress response and virulence. We constructed a mutant affected in the predicted prolipoprotein diacylglyceryl transferase gene lgt, and examined the role of Lgt in membrane anchoring, growth, the stress response and virulence. Inactivation of lgt enhanced growth in a high concentration of Mn2+ or under oxidative stress in vitro, and significantly decreased virulence.
The reductases performing the four steps of denitrification are controlled by a network of transcriptional regulators and ancillary factors responding to intra- and extracellular signals, amongst which are oxygen and N oxides (NO and ). Although many components of the regulatory network have been identified, there are gaps in our understanding of their role(s) in controlling the expression of the various reductases, in particular the environmentally important N2O reductase (N2OR). We investigated denitrification phenotypes of Paracoccus denitrificans mutants deficient in: (i) regulatory proteins (three FNR-type transcriptional regulators, NarR, NNR and FnrP, and NirI, which is involved in transcription activation of the structural nir cluster); (ii) functional enzymes (NO reductase and N2OR); or (iii) ancillary factors involved in N2O reduction (NirX and NosX). A robotized incubation system allowed us to closely monitor changes in concentrations of oxygen and all gaseous products during the transition from oxic to anoxic respiration. Strains deficient in NO reductase were able to grow during denitrification, despite reaching micromolar concentrations of NO, but were unable to return to oxic respiration. The FnrP mutant showed linear anoxic growth in a medium with nitrate as the sole NOx, but exponential growth was restored by replacing nitrate with nitrite. We interpret this as nitrite limitation, suggesting dual transcriptional control of respiratory nitrate reductase (NAR) by FnrP and NarR. Mutations in either NirX or NosX did not affect the phenotype, but the double mutant lacked the potential to reduce N2O. Finally, we found that FnrP and NNR are alternative and equally effective inducers of N2OR.
Pseudoalteromonas flavipulchra JG1 produces a protein PfaP and a range of small-molecule compounds with inhibitory activities against Vibrio anguillarum. The PfaP protein was purified from the extracellular products of JG1 by electroelution, and antibacterial activity was observed by an in-gel antibacterial assay. The complete amino acid sequence (694 aa) of PfaP was determined by de novo peptide sequencing and subsequent alignment with the proteome sequence of strain JG1. The calculated molecular mass of PfaP was 77.0 kDa. PfaP was 58 % identical to l-lysine oxidase AlpP of Pseudoalteromonas tunicata D2, and 54 % identical to the marinocine antimicrobial protein of Marinomonas mediterranea MMB-1. Five small molecules (compounds 1–5) with antibacterial activity, which were identified as p-hydroxybenzoic acid (1), trans-cinnamic acid (2), 6-bromoindolyl-3-acetic acid (3), N-hydroxybenzoisoxazolone (4) and 2′-deoxyadenosine (5), were purified by sequential column chromatography over silica gel, Sephadex LH-20 and RP-18 from ethyl acetate extract of strain JG1, and their structures were determined by NMR and MS. Brown compound 3, the only brominated compound, showed antibacterial activity against both Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria.
Corynebacterineae are characterized by the presence of long-chain lipids, notably mycolic acids (α-alkyl, β-hydroxy fatty acids), the structures of which are genus-specific. Mycolic acids from two environmental strains, Amycolicicoccus subflavus and Hoyosella altamirensis, were isolated and their structures were established using a combination of mass spectrometry analysis, 1H-NMR spectroscopy and chemical degradations. The C2–C3 cleavage of these C30–C36 acids led to the formation of two fragments: saturated C9–C11 acids, and saturated and unsaturated C20–C25 aldehydes. Surprisingly, the fatty acids at the origin of the two fragments making up these mycolic acids were present in only minute amounts in the fatty acid pool. Moreover, the double bond in the main C24 aldehyde fragment was located at position ω16, whereas that found in the ethylenic fatty acids of the bacteria was at ω9. These data question the biosynthesis of these new mycolic acids in terms of the nature of the precursors, chain elongation and desaturation. Nevertheless, they are consistent with the occurrence of the key genes of mycolic acid biosynthesis, including those encoding proteins of the fatty acid synthase II system, identified in the genome of A. subflavus. Altogether, while the presence of mycolic acids and analysis of their 16S rDNA sequences would suggest that these strains belong to the Mycobacteriaceae family, the originality of their structures reinforces the recent description of the novel genera Amycolicicoccus and Hoyosella.
Two of the three [NiFe]-hydrogenases (Hyd) of Escherichia coli have a hydrogen-uptake function in anaerobic metabolism. While Hyd-2 is maximally synthesized when the bacterium grows by fumarate respiration, Hyd-1 synthesis shows a correlation with fermentation of sugar substrates. In an attempt to advance our knowledge on the physiological function of Hyd-1 during fermentative growth, we examined Hyd-1 activity and levels in various derivatives of E. coli K-12 MC4100 with specific defects in sugar utilization. MC4100 lacks a functional fructose phosphotransferase system (PTS) and therefore grows more slowly under anaerobic conditions in rich medium in the presence of d-fructose compared with d-glucose. Growth in the presence of fructose resulted in an approximately 10-fold increase in Hyd-1 levels in comparison with growth under the same conditions with glucose. This increase in the amount of Hyd-1 was not due to regulation at the transcriptional level. Reintroduction of a functional fruBKA-encoded fructose PTS into MC4100 restored growth on d-fructose and reduced Hyd-1 levels to those observed after growth on d-glucose. Reducing the rate of glucose uptake by introducing a mutation in the gene encoding the cAMP receptor protein, or consumption through glycolysis, by introducing a mutation in phosphoglucose isomerase, increased Hyd-1 levels during growth on glucose. These results suggest that the ability to oxidize hydrogen by Hyd-1 shows a strong correlation with the rate of carbon flow through glycolysis and provides a direct link between hydrogen, carbon and energy metabolism.