Three trans-acting regulatory functions control hydrogenase synthesis in Alcaligenes eutrophus.
ABSTRACT: Random Tn5 mutagenesis of the regulatory region of megaplasmid pHG1 of Alcaligenes eutrophus led to the identification of three distinct loci designated hoxA, hoxD, and hoxE. Sequencing of the hoxA locus revealed an open reading frame which could code for a polypeptide of 482 amino acids with a molecular mass of 53.5 kDa. A protein of comparable apparent molecular mass was detected in heterologous expression studies with a plasmid-borne copy of the hoxA gene. Amino acid alignments revealed striking homologies between HoxA and the transcriptional activators NifA and NtrC of Klebsiella pneumoniae and HydG of Escherichia coli. HoxA- mutants of A. eutrophus lacked both NAD-reducing soluble hydrogenase and membrane-bound hydrogenase. In HoxA- mutants, the synthesis of beta-galactosidase from a hoxS'-'lacZ operon fusion was drastically reduced, indicating that HoxA is essential for the transcription of hydrogenase genes. Mutants defective in hoxD and hoxE also lacked the catalytic activities of the two hydrogenases; however, in contrast to HoxA- mutants, they contained immunologically detectable NAD-reducing soluble hydrogenase and membrane-bound hydrogenase proteins, although at a reduced level. The low hydrogenase content in the HoxD- and HoxE- mutants correlated with a decrease in beta-galactosidase synthesized under the direction of a hoxS'-'lacZ operon fusion. Thus, hoxD and hoxE apparently intervene both in the regulation of hydrogenase synthesis and in subsequent steps leading to the formation of catalytically active enzymes.
Project description:The protein HoxA is the central regulator of the Alcaligenes eutrophus H16 hox regulon, which encodes two hydrogenases, a nickel permease and several accessory proteins required for hydrogenase biosynthesis. Expression of the regulatory gene hoxA was analyzed. Screening of an 8-kb region upstream of hoxA with a promoter probe vector localized four promoter activities. One of these was found in the region immediately 5' of hoxA; the others were correlated with the nickel metabolism genes hypA1, hypB1, and hypX. All four activities were independent of HoxA and of the minor transcription factor sigma(54). Translational fusions revealed that hoxA is expressed constitutively at low levels. In contrast to these findings, immunoblotting studies revealed a clear fluctuation in the HoxA pool in response to conditions which induce the hox regulon. Quantitative transcript assays indicated elevated levels of hyp mRNA under hydrogenase-derepressing conditions. Using interposon mutagenesis, we showed that the activity of a remote promoter is required for hydrogenase expression and autotrophic growth. Site-directed mutagenesis revealed that P(MBH), which directs transcription of the structural genes of the membrane-bound hydrogenase, contributes to the expression of hoxA under hydrogenase-derepressing conditions. Thus, expression of the hox regulon is governed by a positive feedback loop mediating amplification of the regulator HoxA. These results imply the existence of an unusually large (ca. 17,000-nucleotide) transcript.
Project description:Nucleotide sequence analysis revealed a 1,791-bp open reading frame in the hox gene cluster of the gram-negative chemolithotroph Alcaligenes eutrophus H16. In order to investigate the biological role of this open reading frame, we generated an in-frame deletion allele via a gene replacement strategy. The resulting mutant grew significantly more slowly than the wild type under lithoautotrophic conditions (6.1 versus 4.2 h doubling time). A reduction in the level of the soluble NAD-reducing hydrogenase (60% of the wild-type activity) was shown to be the cause of the slow lithoautotrophic growth. We used plasmid-borne gene fusions to monitor the expression of the operons encoding the soluble and membrane-bound hydrogenases. The expression of both operons was lower in the mutant than in the wild-type strain. These results suggest that the newly identified gene, designated hoxX, encodes a regulatory component which, in conjunction with the transcriptional activator HoxA, controls hydrogenase synthesis.
Project description:Heterologous complementation studies using Alcaligenes eutrophus H16 as a recipient identified a hydrogenase-specific regulatory DNA region on megaplasmid pHG21-a of the related species Alcaligenes hydrogenophilus. Nucleotide sequence analysis revealed four open reading frames on the subcloned DNA, designated hoxA, hoxB, hoxC, and hoxJ. The product of hoxA is homologous to a transcriptional activator of the family of two-component regulatory systems present in a number of H2-oxidizing bacteria. hoxB and hoxC predict polypeptides of 34.5 and 52.5 kDa, respectively, which resemble the small and the large subunits of [NiFe] hydrogenases and correlate with putative regulatory proteins of Bradyrhizobium japonicum (HupU and HupV) and Rhodobacter capsulatus (HupU). hoxJ encodes a protein with typical consensus motifs of histidine protein kinases. Introduction of the complete set of genes on a broad-host-range plasmid into A. eutrophus H16 caused severe repression of soluble and membrane-bound hydrogenase (SH and MBH, respectively) synthesis in the absence of H2. This repression was released by truncation of hoxJ. H2-dependent hydrogenase gene transcription is a typical feature of A. hydrogenophilus and differs from the energy and carbon source-responding, H2-independent mode of control characteristic of A. eutrophus H16. Disruption of the A. hydrogenophilus hoxJ gene by an in-frame deletion on megaplasmid pHG21-a led to conversion of the regulatory phenotype: SH and MBH of the mutant were expressed in the absence of H2 in response to the availability of the carbon and energy source. RNA dot blot analysis showed that HoxJ functions on the transcriptional level. These results suggest that the putative histidine protein kinase HoxJ is involved in sensing molecular hydrogen, possibly in conjunction with the hydrogenase-like polypeptides HoxB and HoxC.
Project description:The agarose-coupled triazine dye Procion Red HE-3B has been demonstrated to be applicable as an affinity gel for the purification of five diverse hydrogenases, namely the soluble, NAD-specific and the membrane-bound hydrogenase of Alcaligenes eutrophus, the membrane-bound hydrogenase of the N2-fixing Alcaligenes latus, the reversible H2-evolving and the unidirectional H2-oxidizing hydrogenase of Clostridium pasteurianum. In the case of the soluble hydrogenase of A. eutrophus, chromatography on Procion Red-agarose even permitted the separation of inactive from active enzyme, thus yielding a 2-3-fold increase in specific activity. For the homogeneous enzyme preparation obtained after two column steps (Procion Red-agarose, DEAE-Sephacel), a specific activity of 121 mumol of H2 oxidized/min per mg of protein was determined. Kinetic studies with free Procion Red provided evidence that the diverse hydrogenases are competitively inhibited by the dye, each with respect to the electron carrier (NAD, Methylene Blue, Methyl Viologen), indicating a specific interaction between Procion Red and the catalytic centres of the enzymes. For the highly purified preparations of the soluble and the membrane-bound hydrogenase of A. eutrophus, in 50 mM-potassium phosphate, pH 7.0, Ki values for Procion Red of 103 and 19 microM have been determined.
Project description:The membrane-bound hydrogenase of Oligotropha carboxidovorans was solubilized with n-dodecyl-beta-D-maltoside and purified 28-fold with a yield of 29% and a specific activity of 173 to 178 micromol of H2 x min(-1) x mg(-1). It is the first hydrogenase studied in a carboxidotrophic bacterium. The enzyme acts on artificial electron-accepting dyes, such as methylene blue, but is ineffective with pyridine nucleotides or other soluble physiological electron acceptors. Hydrogenase of O. carboxidovorans belongs to class I of hydrogenases and is a heterodimeric 101,692-Da NiFe-protein composed of the polypeptides HoxL and HoxS. Molecular cloning data revealed, that HoxL comprises 604 amino acid residues and has a molecular mass of 67,163 Da. Pre-HoxS comprises 360 amino acid residues and is synthesized as a precursor protein which is cleaved after alanine at position 45, thus producing a mature HoxS of 33,767 Da. The leader sequence corresponds to the signal peptide of small subunits of hydrogenases. The hydropathy plots of HoxL and HoxS were indicative for the absence of transmembranous helices. HoxZ has four transmembranous helices and is considered the potential membrane anchor of hydrogenase in O. carboxidovorans. Hydrogenase genes show the transcriptional order 5' hoxV --> hoxS --> hoxL --> hoxZ 3'. The hox gene cluster as well as the clustered CO dehydrogenase (cox) and Calvin cycle (cbb) genes are arranged within a 30-kb DNA segment of the 128-kb megaplasmid pHCG3 of O. carboxidovorans.
Project description:Two hundred thirty-nine base pairs upstream from acoXABC, which encodes the Alcaligenes eutrophus H16 structural genes essential for cleavage of acetoin, the 2,004-bp acoR gene was identified. acoR encodes a protein of 668 amino acids with a molecular mass of 72.9 kDa. The amino acid sequence deduced from acoR exhibited homologies to the primary structures of transcriptional activators such as NifA of Azotobacter vinelandii, NtrC of Klebsiella pneumoniae, and HoxA of A. eutrophus. Striking similarities to the central domain of these proteins and the presence of a typical nucleotide-binding site (GETGSGK) as well as of a C-terminal helix-turn-helix motif as a DNA-binding site were revealed. Between acoR and acoXABC, two different types of sequences with dual rotational symmetry [CAC-(N11 to N18)-GTG and TGT-(N10 to N14)-ACA] were found; these sequences are similar to NtrC and NifA upstream activator sequences, respectively. Determination of the N-terminal amino acid sequence of an acoR'-'lacZ gene fusion identified the translational start of acoR. S1 nuclease protection assay identified the transcriptional start site 109 bp upstream of acoR. The promoter region (TTGCGC-N18-TACATT) resembled the sigma 70 consensus sequence of Escherichia coli. Analysis of an acoR'-'lacZ fusion and primer extension studies revealed that acoR was expressed at a low level under all culture conditions, whereas acoXABC was expressed only in acetoin-grown cells. The insertions of Tn5 in six transposon-induced acetoin-negative mutants of A. eutrophus were mapped within acoR. On the basis of these studies, it is probable that AcoR represents a regulatory protein which is required for sigma 54-dependent transcription of acoXABC.
Project description:Oxidation of molecular hydrogen catalyzed by [NiFe] hydrogenases is a widespread mechanism of energy generation among prokaryotes. Biosynthesis of the H2-oxidizing enzymes is a complex process subject to positive control by H2 and negative control by organic energy sources. In this report we describe a novel signal transduction system regulating hydrogenase gene (hox) expression in the proteobacterium Alcaligenes eutrophus. This multicomponent system consists of the proteins HoxB, HoxC, HoxJ*, and HoxA. HoxB and HoxC share characteristic features of dimeric [NiFe] hydrogenases and form the putative H2 receptor that interacts directly or indirectly with the histidine protein kinase HoxJ*. A single amino acid substitution (HoxJ*G422S) in a conserved C-terminal glycine-rich motif of HoxJ* resulted in a loss of H2-dependent signal transduction and a concomitant block in autophosphorylating activity, suggesting that autokinase activity is essential for the response to H2. Whereas deletions in hoxB or hoxC abolished hydrogenase synthesis almost completely, the autokinase-deficient strain maintained high-level hox gene expression, indicating that the active sensor kinase exerts a negative effect on hox gene expression in the absence of H2. Substitutions of the conserved phosphoryl acceptor residue Asp55 in the response regulator HoxA (HoxAD55E and HoxAD55N) disrupted the H2 signal-transduction chain. Unlike other NtrC-like regulators, the altered HoxA proteins still allowed high-level transcriptional activation. The data presented here suggest a model in which the nonphosphorylated form of HoxA stimulates transcription in concert with a yet unknown global energy-responsive factor.
Project description:Mutation of the functionally redundant Hoxa 11/Hoxd 11 genes gives absent or rudimentary kidneys resulting from a dramatic reduction of the growth and branching of the ureteric bud. To understand better the molecular mechanisms of Hoxa 11/Hoxd 11 function in kidney development, it is necessary to identify the downstream target genes regulated by their encoded transcription factors. To this end, we conducted a screen for Hoxa 11-responsive genes in two kidney cell lines. HEK293 cells, which usually do not express Hoxa 11, were modified to allow inducible Hoxa 11 expression. The mK10 cells, derived specifically for this study from Hoxa 11/Hoxd 11 double-mutant mice, were also modified to give cell populations with and without Hoxa 11 expression. Differential display, Gene Discovery Arrays, and Affymetrix genechip probe arrays were used to screen for genes up- or down-regulated by Hoxa 11. Nine genes, PDGF A, Cathepsin L, annexin A1, Mm.112139, Est2 repressor factor, NrCAM, ZNF192, integrin-associated protein, and GCM1, showed reproducible 3-fold or smaller changes in gene expression in response to Hoxa 11. One gene, the Integrin alpha8, was up-regulated approximately 20-fold after Hoxa 11 expression. The Integrin alpha8 gene is expressed together with Hoxa 11 in metanephric mesenchyme cells, and mutation of Integrin alpha8 gives a bud-branching morphogenesis defect very similar to that observed in Hoxa 11/Hoxd 11 mutant mice. In situ hybridizations showed a dramatic regional reduction in Integrin alpha8 expression in the developing kidneys of Hoxa 11/Hoxd 11 mutant mice. This work suggests that the Integrin alpha8 gene may be a major effector of Hoxa 11/Hoxd 11 function in the developing kidney.
Project description:The soluble hydrogenase (hydrogen-NAD+ oxidoreductase, EC 188.8.131.52) of Alcaligenes eutrophus H16 was shown to be stabilized by oxidation with oxygen and ferricyanide as long as electron donors and reducing compounds were absent. The simultaneous presence of H2, NADH and O2 in the enzyme solution, however, caused an irreversible inactivation of hydrogenase that was dependent on the O2 concentration. The half-life periods of 4 degrees C under partial pressures of 0.1, 5, 20 and 50% O2 were 11, 5, 2.5 and 1.5 h respectively. Evidence has been obtained that hydrogenase produces superoxide free radical anions (O2-.), which were detected by their ability to oxidize hydroxylamine to nitrite. The correlation between O2 concentration, nitrite formation and inactivation rates and the stabilization of hydrogenase by addition of superoxide dismutase indicated that superoxide radicals are responsible for enzyme inactivation. During short-term activity measurements (NAD+ reduction, H2 evolution from NADH), hydrogenase activity was inhibited by O2 only very slightly. In the presence of 0.7 mM-O2 an inhibition of about 20% was observed.
Project description:Murine Hoxd-3 (Hox 4.1) genomic DNA and cDNA and Hoxa-3 (Hox 1.5) cDNA were cloned and sequenced. The homeodomains of Hoxd-3 and Hoxa-3 and regions before and after the homeodomain are highly conserved. Both Hoxa-3 and Hoxa-3 proteins have a proline-rich region that contains consensus amino acid sequences for binding to Src homology 3 domains of some signal transduction proteins. Northern blot analysis of RNA from 8- to 11-day-old mouse embryos revealed a 4.3-kb species of Hoxd-3 RNA, whereas a less abundant 3.0-kb species of Hoxd-3 RNA was found in RNA from 9- to 11-day-old embryos. Two species of Hoxd-3 poly(A)+ RNA, 4.3 and 6.0 kb in length, were found in poly(A)+ RNA from adult mouse kidney, but not in RNA from other adult tissues tested. Hoxd-3 mRNA was detected by in situ hybridization in 12-, 14-, and 17-day-old mouse embryos in the posterior half of the myelencephalon, spinal cord, dorsal root ganglia, first cervical vertebra, thyroid gland, kidney tubules, esophagus, stomach, and intestines.