Salicylic acid, yersiniabactin, and pyoverdin production by the model phytopathogen Pseudomonas syringae pv. tomato DC3000: synthesis, regulation, and impact on tomato and Arabidopsis host plants.
ABSTRACT: A genetically tractable model plant pathosystem, Pseudomonas syringae pv. tomato DC3000 on tomato and Arabidopsis thaliana hosts, was used to investigate the role of salicylic acid (SA) and iron acquisition via siderophores in bacterial virulence. Pathogen-induced SA accumulation mediates defense in these plants, and DC3000 contains the genes required for the synthesis of SA, the SA-incorporated siderophore yersiniabactin (Ybt), and the fluorescent siderophore pyoverdin (Pvd). We found that DC3000 synthesizes SA, Ybt, and Pvd under iron-limiting conditions in culture. Synthesis of SA and Ybt by DC3000 requires pchA, an isochorismate synthase gene in the Ybt genomic cluster, and exogenous SA can restore Ybt production by the pchA mutant. Ybt was also produced by DC3000 in planta, suggesting that Ybt plays a role in DC3000 pathogenesis. However, the pchA mutant did not exhibit any growth defect or altered virulence in plants. This lack of phenotype was not attributable to plant-produced SA restoring Ybt production, as the pchA mutant grew similarly to DC3000 in an Arabidopsis SA biosynthetic mutant, and in planta Ybt was not detected in pchA-infected wild-type plants. In culture, no growth defect was observed for the pchA mutant versus DC3000 for any condition tested. Instead, enhanced growth of the pchA mutant was observed under stringent iron limitation and additional stresses. This suggests that SA and Ybt production by DC3000 is costly and that Pvd is sufficient for iron acquisition. Further exploration of the comparative synthesis and utility of Ybt versus Pvd production by DC3000 found siderophore-dependent amplification of ybt gene expression to be absent, suggesting that Ybt may play a yet unknown role in DC3000 pathogenesis.
Project description:We have identified an approximately 22-kb region of the pgm locus of Yersinia pestis KIM6+ which encodes a number of iron-regulated proteins involved in the biosynthesis of the Y. pestis cognate siderophore, yersiniabactin (Ybt), and which is located immediately upstream of the pesticin/yersiniabactin receptor gene (psn). Sequence analysis and the construction of insertion and deletion mutants allowed us to determine the putative location of the irp1 gene and the positions of irp2, ybtT, and ybtE within the ybt operon. Mutations in the irp1, irp2, or ybtE gene yielded strains defective in siderophore production. Mutant strains were unable to grow on iron-deficient media at 37 degrees C but could be cross-fed by culture supernatants from yersiniabactin-producing strains of Y. pestis grown under iron-limiting conditions. Sodium dodecyl sulfate-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis analysis of whole-cell extracts from Ybt+ and Ybt- strains grown in iron-deficient media revealed that expression of ybt-encoded proteins is not only iron regulated but also influenced by the presence of the siderophore itself. Finally, Y. pestis strains with mutations in either the psn or irp2 gene were avirulent in mice when inoculated subcutaneously.
Project description:One prerequisite for the virulence of Yersinia pestis, causative agent of bubonic plague, is the yersiniabactin (Ybt) siderophore-dependent iron transport system that is encoded within a high-pathogenicity island (HPI) within the pgm locus of the Y. pestis chromosome. Several gene products within the HPI have demonstrated functions in the synthesis or transport of Ybt. Here we examine the roles of ybtU and ybtT. In-frame mutations in ybtT or ybtU yielded strains defective in siderophore production. Mutant strains were unable to grow on iron-deficient media at 37 degrees C but could be cross-fed by culture supernatants from a Ybt-producing strain of Y. pestis. The ybtU mutant failed to express four indicator Ybt proteins (HMWP1, HMWP2, YbtE, and Psn), a pattern similar to those for other ybt biosynthetic mutants. In contrast, strains carrying mutations in ybtT or ybtS (a previously identified gene required for Ybt biosynthesis) produced all four proteins at wild-type levels under iron-deprived conditions. To assess the effects of ybtT, -U, and -S mutations on transcription of ybt genes, reporter plasmids with ybtP or psn promoters controlling lacZ expression were introduced into these mutants. Normal iron-regulated beta-galactosidase activity was observed in the ybtT and ybtS mutants, whereas a significant loss of expression occurred in the DeltaybtU strain. These results show that ybtT and ybtU genes are involved in the biosynthesis of the Ybt siderophore and that a ybtU mutation but not ybtT or ybtS mutations affects transcription from the ybtP and psn promoters.
Project description:One requirement for the pathogenesis of Yersinia pestis, the causative agent of bubonic plague, is the yersiniabactin (Ybt) siderophore-dependent iron transport system that is encoded within a high-pathogenicity island (HPI) within the pgm locus of the Y. pestis chromosome. Nine gene products within the HPI have demonstrated functions in the nonribosomal peptide synthesis (NRPS)/polyketide (PK) synthesis or transport of Ybt. NRPS/PK synthetase or synthase enzymes are generally activated by phosphopantetheinylation. However, no products with similarities to known phosphopantetheinyl (P-pant) transferases were found within the pgm locus. We have identified a gene, ybtD, encoded outside the HPI and pgm locus, that is necessary for function of the Ybt system and has similarities to other P-pant transferases such as EntD of Escherichia coli. A deletion within ybtD yielded a strain (KIM6-2085+) defective in siderophore production. This strain was unable to grow on iron-deficient media at 37 degrees C but could be cross-fed by culture supernatants from Ybt-producing strains of Y. pestis. The promoter region of ybtD was fused to lacZ; beta-galactosidase expression from this reporter was not regulated by the iron status of the bacterial cells or by YbtA, a positive regulator of other genes of the ybt system. The ybtD mutant failed to express indicator Ybt proteins (high-molecular-weight protein 1 [HMWP1], HMWP2, and Psn), a pattern similar to those seen with several other ybt biosynthetic mutants. In contrast, cells containing a single amino acid substitution (S2908A) in the terminal thioesterase domain of HMWP2 failed to exhibit any ybt regulatory defects but did not elaborate extracellular Ybt under iron-deficient conditions.
Project description:Xanthomonas campestris pv. campestris causes black rot, a serious disease of crucifers. Xanthomonads encode a siderophore biosynthesis and uptake gene cluster xss (Xanthomonas siderophore synthesis) involved in the production of a vibrioferrin-type siderophore. However, little is known about the role of the siderophore in the iron uptake and virulence of X. campestris pv. campestris. In this study, we show that X. campestris pv. campestris produces an ?-hydroxycarboxylate-type siderophore (named xanthoferrin), which is required for growth under low-iron conditions and for optimum virulence. A mutation in the siderophore synthesis xssA gene causes deficiency in siderophore production and growth under low-iron conditions. In contrast, the siderophore utilization ?xsuA mutant is able to produce siderophore, but exhibits a defect in the utilization of the siderophore-iron complex. Our radiolabelled iron uptake studies confirm that the ?xssA and ?xsuA mutants exhibit defects in ferric iron (Fe<sup>3+</sup> ) uptake. The ?xssA mutant is able to utilize and transport the exogenous xanthoferrin-Fe<sup>3+</sup> complex; in contrast, the siderophore utilization or uptake mutant ?xsuA exhibits defects in siderophore uptake. Expression analysis of the xss operon using a chromosomal gusA fusion indicates that the xss operon is expressed during in planta growth and under low-iron conditions. Furthermore, exogenous iron supplementation in cabbage leaves rescues the in planta growth deficiency of ?xssA and ?xsuA mutants. Our study reveals that the siderophore xanthoferrin is an important virulence factor of X. campestris pv. campestris which promotes in planta growth by the sequestration of Fe<sup>3+</sup> .
Project description:A number of bacterial pathogens require the ZnuABC Zinc (Zn2+) transporter and/or a second Zn2+ transport system to overcome Zn2+ sequestration by mammalian hosts. Previously we have shown that in addition to ZnuABC, Yersinia pestis possesses a second Zn2+ transporter that involves components of the yersiniabactin (Ybt), siderophore-dependent iron transport system. Synthesis of the Ybt siderophore and YbtX, a member of the major facilitator superfamily, are both critical components of the second Zn2+ transport system. Here we demonstrate that a ybtX znu double mutant is essentially avirulent in mouse models of bubonic and pneumonic plague while a ybtX mutant retains high virulence in both plague models. While sequestration of host Zn is a key nutritional immunity factor, excess Zn appears to have a significant antimicrobial role in controlling intracellular bacterial survival. Here, we demonstrate that ZntA, a Zn2+ exporter, plays a role in resistance to Zn toxicity in vitro, but that a zntA zur double mutant retains high virulence in both pneumonic and bubonic plague models and survival in macrophages. We also confirm that Ybt does not directly bind Zn2+in vitro under the conditions tested. However, we detect a significant increase in Zn2+-binding ability of filtered supernatants from a Ybt+ strain compared to those from a strain unable to produce the siderophore, supporting our previously published data that Ybt biosynthetic genes are involved in the production of a secreted Zn-binding molecule (zincophore). Our data suggest that Ybt or a modified Ybt participate in or promote Zn-binding activity in culture supernatants and is involved in Zn acquisition in Y. pestis.
Project description:Many Gram-negative bacteria interact with extracellular metal ions by expressing one or more siderophore types. Among these, the virulence-associated siderophore yersiniabactin (Ybt) is an avid copper chelator, forming stable cupric (Cu(II)-Ybt) complexes that are detectable in infected patients. Here we show that Ybt-expressing E. coli are protected from intracellular killing within copper-replete phagocytic cells. This survival advantage is highly dependent upon the phagocyte respiratory burst, during which superoxide is generated by the NADPH oxidase complex. Chemical fractionation links this phenotype to a previously unappreciated superoxide dismutase (SOD)-like activity of Cu(II)-Ybt. Unlike previously described synthetic copper-salicylate (Cu(II)-SA) SOD mimics, the salicylate-based natural product Cu(II)-Ybt retains catalytic activity at physiologically plausible protein concentrations. These results reveal a new virulence-associated adaptation based upon spontaneous assembly of a non-protein catalyst.
Project description:Nasal colonization by both gram-positive and gram-negative pathogens induces expression of the innate immune protein lipocalin 2 (Lcn2). Lcn2 binds and sequesters the iron-scavenging siderophore enterobactin (Ent), preventing bacterial iron acquisition. In addition, Lcn2 bound to Ent induces release of IL-8 from cultured respiratory cells. As a countermeasure, pathogens of the Enterobacteriaceae family such as Klebsiella pneumoniae produce additional siderophores such as yersiniabactin (Ybt) and contain the iroA locus encoding an Ent glycosylase that prevents Lcn2 binding. Whereas the ability of Lcn2 to sequester iron is well described, the ability of Lcn2 to induce inflammation during infection is unknown. To study each potential effect of Lcn2 on colonization, we exploited K. pneumoniae mutants that are predicted to be susceptible to Lcn2-mediated iron sequestration (iroA ybtS mutant) or inflammation (iroA mutant), or to not interact with Lcn2 (entB mutant). During murine nasal colonization, the iroA ybtS double mutant was inhibited in an Lcn2-dependent manner, indicating that the iroA locus protects against Lcn2-mediated growth inhibition. Since the iroA single mutant was not inhibited, production of Ybt circumvents the iron sequestration effect of Lcn2 binding to Ent. However, colonization with the iroA mutant induced an increased influx of neutrophils compared to the entB mutant. This enhanced neutrophil response to Ent-producing K. pneumoniae was Lcn2-dependent. These findings suggest that Lcn2 has both pro-inflammatory and iron-sequestering effects along the respiratory mucosa in response to bacterial Ent. Therefore, Lcn2 may represent a novel mechanism of sensing microbial metabolism to modulate the host response appropriately.
Project description:The bacterial plant pathogen Pseudomonas syringae pv. tomato DC3000 (DC3000) causes disease in Arabidopsis thaliana and tomato plants, and it elicits the hypersensitive response in nonhost plants such as Nicotiana tabacum and Nicotiana benthamiana. While these events chiefly depend upon the type III protein secretion system and the effector proteins that this system translocates into plant cells, additional factors have been shown to contribute to DC3000 virulence and still many others are likely to exist. Therefore, we explored the contribution of the twin-arginine translocation (Tat) system to the physiology of DC3000. We found that a tatC mutant strain of DC3000 displayed a number of phenotypes, including loss of motility on soft agar plates, deficiency in siderophore synthesis and iron acquisition, sensitivity to copper, loss of extracellular phospholipase activity, and attenuated virulence in host plant leaves. In the latter case, we provide evidence that decreased virulence of tatC mutants likely arises from a synergistic combination of (i) compromised fitness of bacteria in planta; (ii) decreased efficiency of type III translocation; and (iii) cytoplasmically retained virulence factors. Finally, we demonstrate a novel broad-host-range genetic reporter based on the green fluorescent protein for the identification of Tat-targeted secreted virulence factors that should be generally applicable to any gram-negative bacterium. Collectively, our evidence supports the notion that virulence of DC3000 is a multifactorial process and that the Tat system is an important virulence determinant of this phytopathogenic bacterium.
Project description:Transposable temperate phages randomly insert into bacterial genomes, providing increased supply and altered spectra of mutations available to selection, thus opening alternative evolutionary trajectories. Transposable phages accelerate bacterial adaptation to new environments, but their effect on adaptation to the social environment is unclear. Using experimental evolution of Pseudomonas aeruginosa in iron-limited and iron-rich environments, where the cost of producing cooperative iron-chelating siderophores is high and low, respectively, we show that transposable phages promote divergence into extreme siderophore production phenotypes. Iron-limited populations with transposable phages evolved siderophore overproducing clones alongside siderophore non-producing cheats. Low siderophore production was associated with parallel mutations in pvd genes, encoding pyoverdine biosynthesis, and pqs genes, encoding quinolone signalling, while high siderophore production was associated with parallel mutations in phenazine-associated gene clusters. Notably, some of these parallel mutations were caused by phage insertional inactivation. These data suggest that transposable phages, which are widespread in microbial communities, can mediate the evolutionary divergence of social strategies.
Project description:Mutants of Pseudomonas fluorescens WCS374 defective in biosynthesis of the fluorescent siderophore pseudobactin still display siderophore activity, indicating the production of a second siderophore. A recombinant cosmid clone (pMB374-07) of a WCS374 gene library harboring loci necessary for the biosynthesis of salicylic acid (SA) and this second siderophore pseudomonine was isolated. The salicylate biosynthesis region of WCS374 was localized in a 5-kb EcoRI fragment of pMB374-07. The SA and pseudomonine biosynthesis region was identified by transfer of cosmid pMB374-07 to a pseudobactin-deficient strain of P. putida. Sequence analysis of the 5-kb subclone revealed the presence of four open reading frames (ORFs). Products of two ORFs (pmsC and pmsB) showed homologies with chorismate-utilizing enzymes; a third ORF (pmsE) encoded a protein with strong similarity with enzymes involved in the biosynthesis of siderophores in other bacterial species. The region also contained a putative histidine decarboxylase gene (pmsA). A putative promoter region and two predicted iron boxes were localized upstream of pmsC. We determined by reverse transcriptase-mediated PCR that the pmsCEAB genes are cotranscribed and that expression is iron regulated. In vivo expression of SA genes was achieved in P. putida and Escherichia coli cells. In E. coli, deletions affecting the first ORF (pmsC) diminished SA production, whereas deletion of pmsB abolished it completely. The pmsB gene induced low levels of SA production in E. coli when expressed under control of the lacZ promoter. Several lines of evidence indicate that SA and pseudomonine biosynthesis are related. Moreover, we isolated a Tn5 mutant (374-05) that is simultaneously impaired in SA and pseudomonine production.