Molecular analysis of the capsule gene region of group A Streptococcus: the hasAB genes are sufficient for capsule expression.
ABSTRACT: Enzymes directing the biosynthesis of the group A streptococcal hyaluronic acid capsule are encoded in the hasABC gene cluster. Inactivation of hasC, encoding UDP-glucose pyrophosphorylase in the heavily encapsulated group A streptococcal strain 87-282, had no effect on capsule production, indicating that hasC is not required for hyaluronic acid synthesis and that an alternative source of UDP-glucose is available for capsule production. Nucleotide sequence and deletion mutation analysis of the 5.5 kb of DNA upstream of hasA revealed that this region is not required for capsule expression. Many (10 of 23) group A streptococcal strains were found to contain insertion element IS1239' approximately 50 nucleotides upstream of the -35 site of the hasA promoter. The presence of IS1239' upstream of hasA did not prevent capsule expression. These results elucidate the molecular architecture of the group A streptococcal chromosomal region upstream of the has operon, indicate that hasABC are the sole components of the capsule gene cluster, and demonstrate that hasAB are sufficient to direct capsule synthesis in group A streptococci.
PROVIDER: S-EPMC107524 | BioStudies |