NlpI-mediated modulation of outer membrane vesicle production through peptidoglycan dynamics in Escherichia coli.
ABSTRACT: Outer membrane vesicles (OMVs) are ubiquitously secreted from the outer membrane (OM) of Gram-negative bacteria. These heterogeneous structures are composed of OM filled with periplasmic content from the site of budding. By analyzing mutants that have vesicle production phenotypes, we can gain insight into the mechanism of OMV budding in wild-type cells, which has thus far remained elusive. In this study, we present data demonstrating that the hypervesiculation phenotype of the nlpI deletion mutant of Escherichia coli correlates with changes in peptidoglycan (PG) dynamics. Our data indicate that in stationary phase cultures the nlpI mutant exhibits increased PG synthesis that is dependent on spr, consistent with a model in which NlpI controls the activity of the PG endopeptidase Spr. In log phase, the nlpI mutation was suppressed by a dacB mutation, suggesting that NlpI regulates penicillin-binding protein 4 (PBP4) during exponential growth. The data support a model in which NlpI negatively regulates PBP4 activity during log phase, and Spr activity during stationary phase, and that in the absence of NlpI, the cell survives by increasing PG synthesis. Further, the nlpI mutant exhibited a significant decrease in covalent outer membrane (OM-PG) envelope stabilizing cross-links, consistent with its high level of OMV production. Based on these results, we propose that one mechanism wild-type Gram-negative bacteria can use to modulate vesiculation is by altering PG-OM cross-linking via localized modulation of PG degradation and synthesis.
Project description:The peptidoglycan (PG) sacculus provides bacteria with the mechanical strength to maintain cell shape and resist osmotic stress. Enlargement of the mesh-like sacculus requires the combined activity of peptidoglycan synthases and hydrolases. In Escherichia coli, the activity of two PG synthases is driven by lipoproteins anchored in the outer membrane (OM). However, the regulation of PG hydrolases is less well understood, with only regulators for PG amidases having been described. Here, we identify the OM lipoprotein NlpI as a general adaptor protein for PG hydrolases. NlpI binds to different classes of hydrolases and can specifically form complexes with various PG endopeptidases. In addition, NlpI seems to contribute both to PG elongation and division biosynthetic complexes based on its localization and genetic interactions. Consistent with such a role, we reconstitute PG multi-enzyme complexes containing NlpI, the PG synthesis regulator LpoA, its cognate bifunctional synthase, PBP1A, and different endopeptidases. Our results indicate that peptidoglycan regulators and adaptors are part of PG biosynthetic multi-enzyme complexes, regulating and potentially coordinating the spatiotemporal action of PG synthases and hydrolases.
Project description:Current experimental vaccines against serogroup B Neisseria meningitidis are based on meningococcal outer membrane (OM) proteins present in outer membrane vesicles (OMV) in which toxic lipopolysaccharide is depleted by detergent extraction. Knowledge of the composition of OM and OMV is essential for developing new meningococcal vaccines based on defined antigens. In the current study, sodium dodecyl sulfate-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis and nanocapillary liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry were used to investigate the proteomes of OM and OMV from meningococcal strain MC58 and OM from a lipopolysaccharide-deficient mutant. The analysis of OM revealed a composition that was much more complex than the composition that has been reported previously; a total of 236 proteins were identified, only 6.4% of which were predicted to be located in the outer membrane. The most abundant proteins included not only the well-established major OM proteins (PorA, PorB, Opc, Rmp, and Opa) but also other proteins, such as pilus-associated protein Q (PilQ) and a putative macrophage infectivity protein. All of these proteins were also present in OMV obtained by extraction of the OM with deoxycholate. There were markedly increased levels of some additional proteins in OM from the lipopolysaccharide-deficient mutant, including enzymes that contribute to the tricarboxylic acid cycle. In all the preparations, the proteins not predicted to have an OM location were predominantly periplasmic or cytoplasmic or had an unknown location, and relatively few cytoplasmic membrane proteins were detected. However, several proteins that have previously been identified as potential vaccine candidates were not detected in either OM preparations or in OMV. These results have important implications for the development and use of vaccines based on outer membrane proteins.
Project description:Outer membrane vesicles (OMV) are spherical membranous structures released from the outer membrane (OM) of Gram-negative bacteria. OMV have been proposed to play several different roles during both pathogenesis and symbiosis. Despite the fact that OMV were described several decades ago, their biogenesis is a poorly characterized process. Whether OMV are produced by an active mechanism or by passive disintegration of the OM is a still matter of controversy. Bacteroides fragilis and Bacteroides thetaiotaomicron are important members of the human microbiota. In this work, we determined and compared the protein compositions of OM and OMV from B. fragilis and B. thetaiotaomicron. SDS-PAGE analysis of both fractions revealed dramatically different protein profiles. Proteomic analysis of OM and OMV in B. fragilis identified more than 40 proteins found exclusively in OMV and more than 30 proteins detectable only in the OM. The OMV-specific proteome showed a high prevalence of glycosidases and proteases, some of which were shown to be active in vitro. Similar results were obtained for B. thetaiotaomicron. Most of the OMV-exclusive proteins were acidic. Based on these results, we propose that these species possess machinery devoted to selectively pack acidic proteins into the OMV. These OMV equipped with hydrolytic enzymes could help in securing nutrients for the benefit of the whole bacterial community present in the microbiota, uncovering a novel function for bacterial OMV. IMPORTANCE The members of genus Bacteroides are key players in the symbiosis between the human host and the gut microbiota. It is known for its ability to degrade a wide variety of glycans that are not substrates for human glycosidases. The cleaved glycans can be utilized by Bacteroides and other microbiota members, resulting in the production of short-chain fatty acids that are beneficial for the host. Although members of the genus Bacteroides are known to secrete different hydrolases, their secretion pathways remain uncharacterized. In this article, we show that B. fragilis and B. thetaiotaomicron preferentially pack a large number of hydrolases in outer membrane vesicles (OMV). Most of these hydrolases are acidic and were detected exclusively in OMV. This suggests the presence of a molecular mechanism in Bacteroides responsible for the selection of OMV proteins based on their charge. We propose that OMV contribute to the establishment and balance of the gut microbiota.
Project description:Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) cause bacterial membrane permeabilization and ultimately cell death at low ?M concentrations. The membrane permeabilization action of a moth derived AMP Cecropin A on E. coli cells in exponential growth (mid-log phase) is well studied. At 1× MIC concentration, Cecropin A penetrates the lipopolysaccharide (LPS) barrier and causes outer membrane (OM) and cytoplasmic membrane (CM) permeabilization. For non-septating cells, permeabilization of both membranes begins at one pole. For septating cells, OM permeabilization begins at the septal region and CM permeabilization begins at one pole. However, in nature bacteria are frequently found in nutrient-starved conditions. Here we extend our single-cell microscopy assays to the attack of Cecropin A on E. coli cells in early stationary phase. Stationary phase E. coli is much more resistant to membrane permeabilization by Cecropin A than mid-log phase E. coli. A tenfold higher concentration of Cecropin A is required to observe CM permeabilization in the majority of stationary phase cells, and even then permeabilization proceeds more slowly. In addition, the spatial pattern of initial CM permeabilization changes from localized at one pole to global. Studies of lipid mutant strains suggest that a sufficient localized concentration of the anionic phospholipid phosphatidylglycerol (PG) guides the position of initial attack of the cationic AMP Cecropin A on the CM.
Project description:BACKGROUND: Outer membrane vesicles (OMVs) are released from the outer membrane of many Gram-negative bacteria. These extracellular compartments are known to transport compounds involved in cell-cell signalling as well as virulence associated proteins, e.g. the cytolysine from enterotoxic E. coli. RESULTS: We have demonstrated that Xanthomonas campestris pv. campestris (Xcc) releases OMVs into the culture supernatant during growth. A proteome study identified 31 different proteins that associate with the OMV fraction of which half are virulence-associated. A comparison with the most abundant outer membrane (OM) proteins revealed that some proteins are enriched in the OMV fraction. This may be connected to differences in the LPS composition between the OMVs and the OM. Furthermore, a comparison of the OMV proteomes from two different culture media indicated that the culture conditions have an impact on the protein composition. Interestingly, the proteins that are common to both culture conditions are mainly involved in virulence. CONCLUSION: Outer membrane vesicles released from the OM of Xcc contain membrane- and virulence-associated proteins. Future experiments will prove whether these structures can serve as "vehicles" for the transport of virulence factors into the host membrane.
Project description:<h4>Unlabelled</h4>Outer membrane vesicles (OMV) are proposed to mediate multiple functions during pathogenesis and symbiosis. However, the mechanisms responsible for OMV formation remain poorly understood. It has been shown in eukaryotic membranes that lipids with an inverted-cone shape favor the formation of positive membrane curvatures. Based on these studies, we formulated the hypothesis that lipid A deacylation might impose shape modifications that result in the curvature of the outer membrane (OM) and subsequent OMV formation. We tested the effect of lipid A remodeling on OMV biogenesis employing Salmonella enterica serovar Typhimurium as a model organism. Expression of the lipid A deacylase PagL resulted in increased vesiculation, without inducing an envelope stress response. Mass spectrometry analysis revealed profound differences in the patterns of lipid A in OM and OMV, with accumulation of deacylated lipid A forms exclusively in OMV. OMV biogenesis by intracellular bacteria upon macrophage infection was drastically reduced in a pagL mutant strain. We propose a novel mechanism for OMV biogenesis requiring lipid A deacylation in the context of a multifactorial process that involves the orchestrated remodeling of the outer membrane.<h4>Importance</h4>The role of lipid remodeling in vesiculation is well documented in eukaryotes. Similarly, bacteria produce membrane-derived vesicles; however, the molecular mechanisms underlying their production are yet to be determined. In this work, we investigated the role of outer membrane remodeling in OMV biogenesis in S Typhimurium. We showed that the expression of the lipid A deacylase PagL results in overvesiculation with deacylated lipid A accumulation exclusively in OMV. An S Typhimurium ?pagL strain showed a significant reduction in intracellular OMV secretion relative to the wild-type strain. Our results suggest a novel mechanism for OMV biogenesis that involves outer membrane remodeling through lipid A modification. Understanding how OMV are produced by bacteria is important to advance our understanding of the host-pathogen interactions.
Project description:Outer membrane vesicles (OMVs) are composed of outer membrane and periplasmic components and are ubiquitously secreted by Gram-negative bacteria. OMVs can disseminate virulence factors for pathogenic bacteria as well as serve as an envelope stress response. From a transposon mutant screen for OMV phenotypes, it was discovered that an nlpA mutant of Escherichia coli produces fewer OMVs than the wild type, whereas a degP mutant produces higher levels of OMVs. NlpA is an inner-membrane-anchored lipoprotein that has a minor role in methionine import. DegP is a periplasmic chaperone/protease for misfolded envelope proteins that is critical when cells are heat shocked. To reveal how these proteins contribute to OMV production, the mutations were combined and the double mutant analyzed. The ?nlpA ?degP strain displayed a high-temperature growth defect that corresponded to the production of fewer OMVs than produced by the ?degP strain. This phenotype also pertained to other undervesiculation mutations in a ?degP background. The hypovesiculation phenotype of ?nlpA in the wild-type strain as well as in the degP deletion strain was found to be a stationary-phase phenomenon. The periplasm of the ?nlpA ?degP strain was determined to contain significantly more protein in stationary phase than the wild type. Additionally, misfolded DegP substrate outer membrane porins were detected in ?degP mutant-derived OMVs. These data suggest that an accumulation of envelope proteins resulting from decreased vesiculation was toxic and contributed to the growth defect. We conclude that OMV production contributes to relieve the envelope of accumulated toxic proteins and that NlpA plays an important role in the production of vesicles in stationary phase.
Project description:Francisella spp. are highly infectious and virulent bacteria that cause the zoonotic disease tularemia. Knowledge is lacking for the virulence factors expressed by Francisella and how these factors are secreted and delivered to host cells. Gram-negative bacteria constitutively release outer membrane vesicles (OMV), which may function in the delivery of virulence factors to host cells. We identified growth conditions under which Francisella novicida produces abundant OMV. Purification of the vesicles revealed the presence of tube-shaped vesicles in addition to typical spherical OMV, and examination of whole bacteria revealed the presence of tubes extending out from the bacterial surface. Recently, both prokaryotic and eukaryotic cells have been shown to produce membrane-enclosed projections, termed nanotubes, which appear to function in cell-cell communication and the exchange of molecules. In contrast to these previously characterized structures, the F. novicida tubes are produced in liquid as well as on solid medium and are derived from the OM rather than the cytoplasmic membrane. The production of the OMV and tubes (OMV/T) by F. novicida was coordinately regulated and responsive to both growth medium and growth phase. Proteomic analysis of purified OMV/T identified known Francisella virulence factors among the constituent proteins, suggesting roles for the vesicles in pathogenesis. In support of this, production of OM tubes by F. novicida was stimulated during infection of macrophages and addition of purified OMV/T to macrophages elicited increased release of proinflammatory cytokines. Finally, vaccination with purified OMV/T protected mice from subsequent challenge with highly lethal doses of F. novicida.
Project description:Outer membrane vesicles (OMVs) are naturally produced by Gram-negative bacteria by a bulging of the outer membrane (OM) and subsequent release into the environment. By serving as vehicles for various cargos, including proteins, nucleic acids and small metabolites, OMVs are central to interbacterial interactions and both symbiotic and pathogenic host bacterial interactions. However, despite their importance, the mechanism of OMV formation remains unclear. Recent evidence indicates that covalent modifications of lipopolysaccharides (LPS) influence OMV biogenesis. Several enteric bacteria modify LPS with phosphoethanolamine (pEtN) using the iron-regulated PmrC (EptA) and CptA pEtN transferases. In wild-type Citrobacter rodentium, the presence of increasing subtoxic concentrations of iron was found to stimulate OMV production 4- to 9-fold above baseline. C. rodentium uses the two-component system PmrAB to sense and adapt to environmental iron. Compared to the wild type, the C. rodentium ΔpmrAB strain exhibited heightened OMV production at similar iron concentrations. PmrAB regulates transcription of pmrC (also known as eptA) and cptA OMV production in strains lacking either pmrC (eptA) or cptA was similarly increased in comparison to that of the wild type. Importantly, plasmid complementation of C. rodentium strains with either pmrC (eptA) or cptA resulted in a drastic inhibition of OMV production. Finally, we showed that β-lactamase and CroP, two enzymes found in the C. rodentium periplasm and outer membrane (OM), respectively, are associated with OMVs. These data suggest a novel mechanism by which C. rodentium and possibly other Gram-negative bacteria can negatively affect OMV production through the PmrAB-regulated genes pmrC (eptA) and cptA IMPORTANCE Although OMVs secreted by Gram-negative bacteria fulfill multiple functions, the molecular mechanism of OMV biogenesis remains ill defined. Our group has previously shown that PmrC (also known as EptA) and CptA maintain OM integrity and provide resistance to iron toxicity and antibiotics in the murine pathogen Citrobacter rodentium In several enteric bacteria, these proteins modify the lipid A and core regions of lipopolysaccharide with phosphoethanolamine moieties. Here, we show that these proteins also repress OMV production in response to environmental iron in C. rodentium These data support the emerging understanding that lipopolysaccharide modifications are important regulators of OMV biogenesis in Gram-negative bacteria.
Project description:The periodontal pathogen Porphyromonas gingivalis has been invoked in the autoimmune disease rheumatoid arthritis (RA). This association relates to the peptidylarginine deiminase of P. gingivalis (PPAD), an enzyme capable of citrullinating human proteins and potentially contributing to loss of tolerance to citrullinated proteins in RA. PPAD is both retained in the outer membrane (OM) of P. gingivalis cells and secreted into the extracellular milieu, where it is detected in a soluble form and in association with outer membrane vesicles (OMVs). Recent studies showed that certain P. gingivalis proteins are retained in the OM through modification with an A-type lipopolysaccharide (A-LPS). Here, we investigated the possible involvement of A-LPS modification in the association of PPAD to the OM and OMVs. The results indicate that the OM- and OMV-associated PPAD is A-LPS-modified. The modified PPAD species is of low abundance in particular clinical isolates of P. gingivalis, which is not due to defects in the overall synthesis of A-LPS-modified proteins but, rather, to particular traits of the respective PPAD proteins. Lastly, we show that OMV association protects the A-LPS-modified PPAD from proteolytic degradation. Altogether, our observations show that A-LPS modification contributes to OM(V) sorting and 'protective secretion' of PPAD.