The Brucella abortus cyclic beta-1,2-glucan virulence factor is substituted with O-ester-linked succinyl residues.
ABSTRACT: Brucella periplasmic cyclic beta-1,2-glucan plays an important role during bacterium-host interaction. Nuclear magnetic resonance spectrometry analysis, thin-layer chromatography, and DEAE-Sephadex chromatography were used to characterize Brucella abortus cyclic glucan. In the present study, we report that a fraction of B. abortus cyclic beta-1,2-glucan is substituted with succinyl residues, which confer anionic character on the cyclic beta-1,2-glucan. The oligosaccharide backbone is substituted at C-6 positions with an average of two succinyl residues per glucan molecule. This O-ester-linked succinyl residue is the only substituent of Brucella cyclic glucan. A B. abortus open reading frame (BAB1_1718) homologous to Rhodobacter sphaeroides glucan succinyltransferase (OpgC) was identified as the gene encoding the enzyme responsible for cyclic glucan modification. This gene was named cgm for cyclic glucan modifier and is highly conserved in Brucella melitensis and Brucella suis. Nucleotide sequencing revealed that B. abortus cgm consists of a 1,182-bp open reading frame coding for a predicted membrane protein of 393 amino acid residues (42.7 kDa) 39% identical to Rhodobacter sphaeroides succinyltransferase. cgm null mutants in B. abortus strains 2308 and S19 produced neutral glucans without succinyl residues, confirming the identity of this protein as the cyclic-glucan succinyltransferase enzyme. In this study, we demonstrate that succinyl substituents of cyclic beta-1,2-glucan of B. abortus are necessary for hypo-osmotic adaptation. On the other hand, intracellular multiplication and mouse spleen colonization are not affected in cgm mutants, indicating that cyclic-beta-1,2-glucan succinylation is not required for virulence and suggesting that no low-osmotic stress conditions must be overcome during infection.
Project description:The animal pathogen Brucella abortus contains a gene cgt, which complemented Sinorhizobium meliloti nodule development (ndvA) and Agrobacterium tumefaciens chromosomal virulence (chvA) mutants. Complemented strains recovered the presence of anionic cyclic beta-1,2-glucan, motility, tumor induction in A. tumefaciens, and nodule occupancy in S. meliloti, all traits strictly associated with the presence of cyclic beta-1,2-glucan in the periplasm. Nucleotide sequencing revealed that B. abortus cgt contains a 1,797-bp open reading frame coding for a predicted membrane protein of 599 amino acids (65.9 kDa) that is 58.5 and 59.9% identical to S. meliloti NdvA and A. tumefaciens ChvA, respectively. Additionally, B. abortus cgt, like S. meliloti ndvA and A. tumefaciens chvA possesses ATP-binding motifs and the ABC signature domain features of a typical ABC transporter. Characterization of Cgt was carried out by the construction of null mutants in B. abortus 2308 and S19 backgrounds. Both mutants do not transport cyclic beta-1,2-glucan to the periplasm, as shown by the absence of anionic cyclic glucan, and they display reduced virulence in mice and defective intracellular multiplication in HeLa cells. These results suggest that cyclic beta-1,2-glucan must be transported into the periplasmatic space to exert its action as a virulence factor.
Project description:The animal pathogen Brucella abortus contains a gene, cgs, that complemented a Rhizobium meliloti nodule development (ndvB) mutant and an Agrobacterium tumefaciens chromosomal virulence (chvB) mutant. The complemented strains recovered the synthesis of cyclic beta(1-2) glucan, motility, virulence in A. tumefaciens, and nitrogen fixation in R. meliloti; all traits were strictly associated with the presence of an active cyclic beta(1-2) glucan synthetase protein in the membranes. Nucleotide sequencing revealed the presence in B. abortus of an 8.49-kb open reading frame coding for a predicted membrane protein of 2,831 amino acids (316.2 kDa) and with 51% identity to R. meliloti NdvB. Four regions of the B. abortus protein spanning amino acids 520 to 800, 1025 to 1124, 1284 to 1526, and 2400 to 2660 displayed similarities of higher than 80% with R. meliloti NdvB. Tn3-HoHo1 mutagenesis showed that the C-terminal 825 amino acids of the Brucella protein, although highly conserved in Rhizobium, are not necessary for cyclic beta(1-2) glucan synthesis. Confirmation of the identity of this protein as B. abortus cyclic beta(1-2) glucan synthetase was done by the construction of a B. abortus Tn3-HoHo1 insertion mutant that does not form cyclic beta(1-2) glucan and lacks the 316.2-kDa membrane protein. The recovery of this mutant from the spleens of inoculated mice was decreased by 3 orders of magnitude compared with that of the parental strain; this result suggests that cyclic beta(1-2) glucan may be a virulence factor in Brucella infection.
Project description:The ?1,2-glucans produced by bacteria are important in invasion, survival and immunomodulation in infected hosts be they mammals or plants. However, there has been a lack of information on proteins which recognize these molecules. This is partly due to the extremely limited availability of the sequence-defined oligosaccharides and derived probes for use in the study of their interactions. Here we have used the cyclic ?1,2-glucan (C?G) of the bacterial pathogen Brucella abortus, after removal of succinyl side chains, to prepare linearized oligosaccharides which were used to generate microarrays. We describe optimized conditions for partial depolymerization of the cyclic glucan by acid hydrolysis and conversion of the ?1,2-gluco-oligosaccharides, with degrees of polymerization 2-13, to neoglycolipids for the purpose of generating microarrays. By microarray analyses, we show that the C-type lectin receptor DC-SIGNR, like the closely related DC-SIGN we investigated earlier, binds to the ?1,2-gluco-oligosaccharides, as does the soluble immune effector serum mannose-binding protein. Exploratory studies with DC-SIGN are suggestive of the recognition also of the intact C?G by this receptor. These findings open the way to unravelling mechanisms of immunomodulation mediated by ?1,2-glucans in mammalian systems.
Project description:Cyclic beta-1,2-glucans (CbetaG) are periplasmic homopolysaccharides that have been shown to play an important role in several symbiotic and pathogenic relationships. Cyclic beta-1,2-glucan synthase (Cgs), the enzyme responsible for the synthesis of CbetaG, is an integral membrane polyfunctional protein that catalyzes the four enzymatic activities (initiation, elongation, phosphorolysis, and cyclization) required for the synthesis of CbetaG. Recently, we have identified the glycosyltransferase and the beta-1,2-glucooligosaccharide phosphorylase domains of Brucella abortus Cgs. In this study, we performed large-scale linker-scanning mutagenesis to gain further insight into the functional domains of Cgs. This analysis allowed us to construct a functional map of the enzyme and led to the identification of the minimal region required for the catalysis of initiation and elongation reactions. In addition, we identified the Cgs region (residues 991 to 1544) as being the protein domain required for cyclization and demonstrated that upon cyclization and releasing of the CbetaG, one or more glucose residues remain attached to the protein intermediate that serves as a primer for the next round of CbetaG synthesis. Finally, our results indicate that the overall control of the degree of polymerization of CbetaG is the result of a balance between elongation, phosphorolysis, and cyclization reactions.
Project description:<h4>Unlabelled</h4>Cyclic ?-1,2-glucans (C?G) are periplasmic homopolysaccharides that play an important role in the virulence and interaction of Brucella with the host. Once synthesized in the cytoplasm by the C?G synthase (Cgs), C?G are transported to the periplasm by the C?G transporter (Cgt) and succinylated by the C?G modifier enzyme (Cgm). Here, we used a bacterial two-hybrid system and coimmunoprecipitation techniques to study the interaction network between these three integral inner membrane proteins. Our results indicate that Cgs, Cgt, and Cgm can form both homotypic and heterotypic interactions. Analyses carried out with Cgs mutants revealed that the N-terminal region of the protein (Cgs region 1 to 418) is required to sustain the interactions with Cgt and Cgm as well as with itself. We demonstrated by single-cell fluorescence analysis that in Brucella, Cgs and Cgt are focally distributed in the membrane, particularly at the cell poles, whereas Cgm is mostly distributed throughout the membrane with a slight accumulation at the poles colocalizing with the other partners. In summary, our results demonstrate that Cgs, Cgt, and Cgm form a membrane-associated biosynthetic complex. We propose that the formation of a membrane complex could serve as a mechanism to ensure the fidelity of C?G biosynthesis by coordinating their synthesis with the transport and modification.<h4>Importance</h4>In this study, we analyzed the interaction and localization of the proteins involved in the synthesis, transport, and modification of Brucella abortus cyclic ?-1,2-glucans (C?G), which play an important role in the virulence and interaction of Brucella with the host. We demonstrate that these proteins interact, forming a complex located mainly at the cell poles; this is the first experimental evidence of the existence of a multienzymatic complex involved in the metabolism of osmoregulated periplasmic glucans in bacteria and argues for another example of pole differentiation in Brucella. We propose that the formation of this membrane complex could serve as a mechanism to ensure the fidelity of C?G biosynthesis by coordinating synthesis with the transport and modification.
Project description:The Brucella melitensis sucB gene encoding the dihydrolipoamide succinyltransferase (E2o) enzyme (previously identified as an immunogenic protein in infected sheep) was cloned and sequenced. The amino acid sequence predicted from the cloned gene revealed 88.8 and 51.2% identity to the dihydrolipoamide succinyltransferase SucB protein from Brucella abortus and Escherichia coli, respectively. Sera from naturally infected sheep showed antibody reactivity against the recombinant SucB protein.
Project description:Brucella, the etiological agent of animal and human brucellosis, is a bacterium with the capacity to modulate the inflammatory response. Cyclic ?-1,2-glucan (C?G) is a virulence factor key for the pathogenesis of Brucella as it is involved in the intracellular life cycle of the bacteria. Using comparative studies with different C?G mutants of Brucella, cgs (C?G synthase), cgt (C?G transporter) and cgm (C?G modifier), we have identified different roles for this polysaccharide in Brucella. While anionic C?G is required for bacterial growth in low osmolarity conditions, the sole requirement for a successful Brucella interaction with mammalian host is its transport to periplasmic space. Our results uncover a new role for C?G in promoting splenomegaly in mice. We showed that C?G-dependent spleen inflammation is the consequence of massive cell recruitment (monocytes, dendritics cells and neutrophils) due to the induction of pro-inflammatory cytokines such as IL-12 and TNF-? and also that the reduced splenomegaly response observed with the cgs mutant is not the consequence of changes in expression levels of the characterized Brucella PAMPs LPS, flagellin or OMP16/19. Complementation of cgs mutant with purified C?G increased significantly spleen inflammation response suggesting a direct role for this polysaccharide.
Project description:Cyclic beta-1,2-glucans (CbetaG) are osmolyte homopolysaccharides with a cyclic beta-1,2-backbone of 17-25 glucose residues present in the periplasmic space of several bacteria. Initiation, elongation, and cyclization, the three distinctive reactions required for building the cyclic structure, are catalyzed by the same protein, the CbetaG synthase. The initiation activity catalyzes the transference of the first glucose from UDP-glucose to a yet-unidentified amino acid residue in the same protein. Elongation proceeds by the successive addition of glucose residues from UDP-glucose to the nonreducing end of the protein-linked beta-1,2-oligosaccharide intermediate. Finally, the protein-linked intermediate is cyclized, and the cyclic glucan is released from the protein. These reactions do not explain, however, the mechanism by which the number of glucose residues in the cyclic structure is controlled. We now report that control of the degree of polymerization (DP) is carried out by a beta-1,2-glucan phosphorylase present at the CbetaG synthase C-terminal domain. This last activity catalyzes the phosphorolysis of the beta-1,2-glucosidic bond at the nonreducing end of the linear protein-linked intermediate, releasing glucose 1-phosphate. The DP is thus regulated by this "length-controlling" phosphorylase activity. To our knowledge, this is the first description of a control of the DP of homopolysaccharides.
Project description:Periplasmic cyclic beta-glucans of Rhizobium species provide important functions during plant infection and hypo-osmotic adaptation. In Sinorhizobium meliloti (also known as Rhizobium meliloti), these molecules are highly modified with phosphoglycerol and succinyl substituents. We have previously identified an S. meliloti Tn5 insertion mutant, S9, which is specifically impaired in its ability to transfer phosphoglycerol substituents to the cyclic beta-glucan backbone (M. W. Breedveld, J. A. Hadley, and K. J. Miller, J. Bacteriol. 177:6346-6351, 1995). In the present study, we have cloned, sequenced, and characterized this mutation at the molecular level. By using the Tn5 flanking sequences (amplified by inverse PCR) as a probe, an S. meliloti genomic library was screened, and two overlapping cosmid clones which functionally complement S9 were isolated. A 3.1-kb HindIII-EcoRI fragment found in both cosmids was shown to fully complement mutant S9. Furthermore, when a plasmid containing this 3.1-kb fragment was used to transform Rhizobium leguminosarum bv. trifolii TA-1JH, a strain which normally synthesizes only neutral cyclic beta-glucans, anionic glucans containing phosphoglycerol substituents were produced, consistent with the functional expression of an S. meliloti phosphoglycerol transferase gene. Sequence analysis revealed the presence of two major, overlapping open reading frames within the 3.1-kb fragment. Primer extension analysis revealed that one of these open reading frames, ORF1, was transcribed and its transcription was osmotically regulated. This novel locus of S. meliloti is designated the cgm (cyclic glucan modification) locus, and the product encoded by ORF1 is referred to as CgmB.
Project description:Survival and replication inside host cells by Brucella spp. requires a type IV secretion system (T4SS), encoded by the virB locus. However, the identity of the molecules secreted by the T4SS has remained elusive. We hypothesized that proteins translocated by the T4SS would be co-regulated with the virB operon. The LuxR family regulator VjbR, known to regulate virB, bound a fragment of the virB promoter containing an 18 bp palindromic motif (virB promoter box), showing that VjbR regulated the virB operon directly. To identify virB co-regulated genes, we searched the Brucella suis 1330 and B. abortus 2308 genomes for genes with an upstream virB promoter box. One hundred and forty-four promoters in the two genomes contained the virB promoter box, including those of fliC encoding flagellin and cgs encoding cyclic beta-glucan synthetase. Thirteen of these proteins were tested for VirB-dependent translocation into macrophages using a beta-lactamase reporter assay. This analysis resulted in the identification of the proteins encoded by BAB1_1652 (VceA) and BR1038/BAB1_1058 (VceC) as novel protein substrates of the Brucella T4SS. VceC could also be translocated by the Legionella pneumophila Dot/Icm T4SS into host cells. Our results suggest that VjbR co-ordinates expression of the T4SS and at least two of its secreted substrates.