Resistance to Two Vinylglycine Antibiotic Analogs Is Conferred by Inactivation of Two Separate Amino Acid Transporters in Erwinia amylovora.
ABSTRACT: Erwinia amylovora is the causal agent of fire blight of apple and pear trees. Several bacteria have been shown to produce antibiotics that antagonize E. amylovora, including pantocins, herbicolins, dapdiamides, and the vinylglycines, 4-formylaminooxyvinylglycine (FVG) and 4-aminoethoxyvinylglycine (AVG). Pantoea ananatis BRT175 was previously shown to exhibit antibiotic activity against E. amylovora via the production of Pantoea natural product 1 (PNP-1), later shown to be FVG; however, exposure of E. amylovora to FVG results in spontaneously resistant mutants. To identify the mechanism of resistance, we used genome variant analysis on spontaneous FVG-resistant mutants of E. amylovora and identified null mutations in the l-asparagine permease gene ansP Heterologous expression of ansP in normally resistant Escherichia coli was sufficient to impart FVG susceptibility, suggesting that FVG is imported through this permease. Because FVG and AVG are structurally similar, we hypothesized that resistance to AVG would also be conferred through inactivation of ansP; however, ansP mutants were not resistant to AVG. We found that spontaneously resistant Ea321 mutants also arise in the presence of AVG, with whole-genome variant analysis revealing that resistance was due to inactivation of the arginine ABC transporter permease subunit gene artQ Heterologous expression of the predicted lysE-like transporter encoded within the Pantoea ananatis BRT175 FVG biosynthetic cluster, which is likely responsible for antibiotic export, was sufficient to confer resistance to both FVG and AVG. This work highlights the important roles of amino acid transporters in antibiotic import into bacteria and the potential utility of antimicrobial amino acid analogs as antibiotics.IMPORTANCE The related antibiotics formylaminooxyvinylglycine (FVG) and aminoethoxyvinylglycine (AVG) have been shown to have activity against the fire blight pathogen Erwinia amylovora; however, E. amylovora can develop spontaneous resistance to these antibiotics. By comparing the genomes of mutants to those of the wild type, we found that inactivation of the l-asparagine transporter conferred resistance to FVG, while inactivation of the l-arginine transporter conferred resistance to AVG. We also show that the transporter encoded by the FVG biosynthetic cluster can confer resistance to both FVG and AVG. Our work indicates the important role that amino acid transporters play in the import of antibiotics and highlights the possible utility in designer antibiotics that enter the bacterial cell through amino acid transporters.
Project description:The oxyvinylglycine 4-formylaminooxyvinylglycine (FVG) arrests the germination of weedy grasses and inhibits the growth of the bacterial plant pathogen Erwinia amylovora. Both biological and analytical methods have previously been used to detect the presence of FVG in crude and extracted culture filtrates of several Pseudomonas fluorescens strains. Although a combination of these techniques is adequate to detect FVG, none is amenable to high-throughput analysis. Likewise, filtrates often contain complex metabolite mixtures that prevent the detection of FVG using established chromatographic techniques. Here, we report the development of a new method that directly detects FVG in crude filtrates using laser ablation electrospray ionization-mass spectrometry (LAESI-MS). This approach overcomes limitations with our existing methodology and allows for the rapid analysis of complex crude culture filtrates. To validate the utility of the LAESI-MS method, we examined crude filtrates from Pantoea ananatis BRT175 and found that this strain also produces FVG. These findings are consistent with the antimicrobial activity of P. ananatis BRT175 and indicate that the spectrum of bacteria that produce FVG stretches beyond rhizosphere-associated Pseudomonas fluorescens.
Project description:Blossoms are important sites of infection for Erwinia amylovora, the causal agent of fire blight of rosaceous plants. Before entering the tissue, the pathogen colonizes the stigmatic surface and has to compete for space and nutrient resources within the epiphytic community. Several epiphytes are capable of synthesizing antibiotics with which they antagonize phytopathogenic bacteria. Here, we report that a multidrug efflux transporter, designated NorM, of E. amylovora confers tolerance to the toxin(s) produced by epiphytic bacteria cocolonizing plant blossoms. According to sequence comparisons, the single-component efflux pump NorM is a member of the multidrug and toxic compound extrusion protein family. The corresponding gene is widely distributed among E. amylovora strains and related plant-associated bacteria. NorM mediated resistance to the hydrophobic cationic compounds norfloxacin, ethidium bromide, and berberine. A norM mutant was constructed and exhibited full virulence on apple rootstock MM 106. However, it was susceptible to antibiotics produced by epiphytes isolated from apple and quince blossoms. The epiphytes were identified as Pantoea agglomerans by 16S rRNA analysis and were isolated from one-third of all trees examined. The promoter activity of norM was twofold greater at 18 degrees C than at 28 degrees C. The lower temperature seems to be beneficial for host infection because of the availability of moisture necessary for movement of the pathogen to the infection sites. Thus, E. amylovora might employ NorM for successful competition with other epiphytic microbes to reach high population densities, particularly at a lower temperature.
Project description:Fire Blight is a destructive disease of apple and pear caused by the enteric bacterial pathogen, Erwinia amylovora. E. amylovora initiates infection by colonizing the stigmata of apple and pear trees, and entering the plants through natural openings. Epiphytic populations of the related enteric bacterium, Pantoea, reduce the incidence of disease through competition and antibiotic production. In this study, we identify an antibiotic from Pantoea ananatis BRT175, which is effective against E. amylovora and select species of Pantoea. We used transposon mutagenesis to create a mutant library, screened approximately 5,000 mutants for loss of antibiotic production, and recovered 29 mutants. Sequencing of the transposon insertion sites of these mutants revealed multiple independent disruptions of an 8.2 kb cluster consisting of seven genes, which appear to be coregulated. An analysis of the distribution of this cluster revealed that it was not present in any other of our 115 Pantoea isolates, or in any of the fully sequenced Pantoea genomes, and is most closely related to antibiotic biosynthetic clusters found in three different species of Pseudomonas. This identification of this biosynthetic cluster highlights the diversity of natural products produced by Pantoea.
Project description:Pantoea vagans C9-1 is a biocontrol strain that produces at least two antibiotics inhibiting the growth of Erwinia amylovora, the causal agent of fire blight disease of pear and apple. One antibiotic, herbicolin I, was purified from culture filtrates of P. vagans C9-1 and determined to be 2-amino-3-(oxirane-2,3-dicarboxamido)-propanoyl-valine, also known as N(ß)-epoxysuccinamoyl-DAP-valine. A plasposon library was screened for mutants that had lost the ability to produce herbicolin I. It was shown that mutants had reduced biocontrol efficacy in immature pear assays. The biosynthetic gene cluster in P. vagans C9-1 was identified by sequencing the flanking regions of the plasposon insertion sites. The herbicolin I biosynthetic gene cluster consists of 10 coding sequences (CDS) and is located on the 166-kb plasmid pPag2. Sequence comparisons identified orthologous gene clusters in Pantoea agglomerans CU0119 and Serratia proteamaculans 568. A low incidence of detection of the biosynthetic cluster in a collection of 45 Pantoea spp. from biocontrol, environmental, and clinical origins showed that this is a rare trait among the tested strains.
Project description:Lytic bacteriophages are in development as biological control agents for the prevention of fire blight disease caused by Erwinia amylovora. Temperate phages should be excluded as biologicals since lysogeny produces the dual risks of host resistance to phage attack and the transduction of virulence determinants between bacteria. The extent of lysogeny was estimated in wild populations of E.?amylovora and Pantoea agglomerans with real-time polymerase chain reaction primers developed to detect E.?amylovora phages belonging to the Myoviridae and Podoviridae families. Pantoea agglomerans, an orchard epiphyte, is easily infected by Erwinia spp. phages, and it serves as a carrier in the development of the phage-mediated biological control agent. Screening of 161 E.?amylovora isolates from 16 distinct geographical areas in North America, Europe, North Africa and New Zealand and 82 P.?agglomerans isolates from southern Ontario, Canada showed that none possessed prophage. Unstable phage resistant clones or lysogens were produced under laboratory conditions. Additionally, a stable lysogen was recovered from infection of bacterial isolate Ea110R with Podoviridae phage ?Ea35-20. These laboratory observations suggested that while lysogeny is possible in E.?amylovora, it is rare or absent in natural populations, and there is a minimal risk associated with lysogenic conversion and transduction by Erwinia spp. phages.
Project description:Stomata have a critical function in the exchange of gases and water vapor between plants and their environment. Stomatal development is under the rigorous control of many regulators. The last step of development is the terminal division of guard mother cells (GMC) into two guard cells (GC). It is still unclear how the symmetric division of GMCs is regulated. Here, we show that the ethylene precursor aminocyclopropane-1-carboxylic acid (ACC) is required for the symmetric division of GMCs into GCs in Arabidopsis. Exogenous application of the ACC biosynthesis inhibitor aminoethoxyvinylglycine (AVG) induced the formation of single guard cells (SGCs). Correspondingly, an acs octuple-mutant with extremely low endogenous ACC also developed SGCs, and exogenous ACC dramatically decreased the number of SGCs in this mutant whereas exogenous ethephon (which is gradually converted into ethylene) had no effect. Furthermore, neither blocking of endogenous ethylene synthesis nor disruption of ethylene signaling transduction could induce the production of SGCs. Further investigation indicated that ACC promoted the division of GMCs in fama-1 and flp-1myb88 mutants whereas AVG inhibited it. Moreover, ACC positively regulated the expression of CDKB1;1 and CYCA2;3 in the fama-1 and flp-1myb88 mutants. The SGC number was not affected by ACC or AVG in cdkb1;11;2 and cyca2;234 mutants. Taken together, the results demonstrate that ACC itself, but not ethylene, positively modulates the symmetric division of GMCs in a manner that is dependent on CDKB1s and CYCA2s.
Project description:Cystathionine beta-lyase (CBL) catalyzes the hydrolysis of L-cystathionine (L-Cth) to produce L-homocysteine, pyruvate, and ammonia. A series of active-site mutants of Escherichia coli CBL (eCBL) was constructed to investigate the roles of residues R58, R59, D116, W340, and R372 in catalysis and inhibition by aminoethoxyvinylglycine (AVG). The effects of these mutations on the k(cat)/K(m) (L-Cth) for the beta-elimination reaction range from a reduction of only 3-fold for D116A and D116N to 6 orders of magnitude for the R372L and R372A mutants. The order of importance of these residues for the hydrolysis of L-Cth is: R372 >> R58 > W340 approximately R59 > D116. Comparison of the kinetic parameters for L-Cth hydrolysis with those for inhibition of eCBL by AVG demonstrates that residue R58 tethers the distal carboxylate group of the substrate and confirms that residues W340 and R372 interact with the alpha-carboxylate moiety. The increase in the pK(a) of the acidic limb and decrease in the pK(a) of the basic limb of the k(cat)/K(m) (L-Cth) versus pH profiles of the R58K and R58A mutants, respectively, support a role for this residue in modulating the pK(a) of an active-site residue.
Project description:Antibiotics are used extensively to control animal, plant, and human pathogens. They are sprayed on apple and pear orchards to control the bacterium Erwinia amylovora, the causative agent of fire blight. This phytopathogen is developing antibiotic resistance and alternatives either have less efficacy, are phytotoxic, or more management intensive. The objective of our study was to develop an effective biological control agent colonizing the host plant and competing with Erwinia amylovora. It must not be phytotoxic, have a wide spectrum of activity, and be unlikely to induce resistance in the pathogen. To this end, several bacterial isolates from various environmental samples were screened to identify suitable candidates that are antagonistic to E. amylovora. We sampled bacteria from the flowers, leaves, and soil from apple and pear orchards from the springtime bloom period until the summer. The most effective bacteria, including isolates of Pseudomonas poae, Paenibacillus polymyxa, Bacillus amyloliquefaciens and Pantoea agglomerans, were tested in vitro and in vivo and formulated into products containing both the live strains and their metabolites that were stable for at least 9 months. Trees treated with the product based on P. agglomerans NY60 had significantly less fire blight than the untreated control and were statistically not different from streptomycin-treated control trees. With P. agglomerans NY60, fire blight never extended beyond the central vein of the inoculated leaf. The fire blight median disease severity score, 10 days after inoculation, was up to 70% less severe on trees treated with P. agglomerans NY60 as compared to untreated controls.
Project description:Construction of a genomic DNA library from Pantoea agglomerans strain CU0119 and screening against the plant pathogen Erwinia amylovora yielded a new family of antibiotics, dapdiamides A-E (1-5). The structures were established through 2D-NMR experiments and mass spectrometry, as well as the synthesis of dapdiamide A (1). Transposon mutagenesis of the active cosmid allowed identification of the biosynthetic gene cluster. The dapdiamide family's promiscuous biosynthetic pathway contains two unconventional amide ligases that are predicted to couple its constituent monomers.
Project description:The Gram-negative bacterium Erwinia amylovora is the causal agent of the devastating disease fire blight in rosaceous plants such as apple, pear, quince, raspberry, and cotoneaster. In order to survive and multiply in a host, microbes must be able to circumvent the toxic effects of antimicrobial plant compounds, such as flavonoids and tannins. E. amylovora uses multidrug efflux transporters that recognize and actively export toxic compounds out of the cells. Here, two heterotrimeric resistance-nodulation-cell division (RND)-type multidrug efflux pumps, MdtABC and MdtUVW, from E. amylovora were identified. These RND systems are unusual in that they contain two different RND proteins forming a functional pump.To find the substrate specificities of the two efflux systems, we overexpressed the transporters in a hypersensitive mutant lacking the major RND pump AcrB. Both transporters mediated resistance to several flavonoids, fusidic acid and novobiocin. Additionally, MdtABC mediated resistance towards josamycin, bile salts and silver nitrate, and MdtUVW towards clotrimazole. The ability of the mdtABC- and mdtUVW-deficient mutants to multiply in apple rootstock was reduced. Quantitative RT-PCR analyses revealed that the expression of the transporter genes was induced during infection of apple rootstock. The polyphenolic plant compound tannin, as well as the heavy metal salt tungstate was found to induce the expression of mdtABC. Finally, the expression of the mdtABC genes was shown to be regulated by BaeR, the response regulator of the two-component system BaeSR, a cell envelope stress response system that controls the adaptive responses to changes in the environment.The expression of MdtABC and MdtUVW is induced during growth of E. amylovora in planta. We identified the plant polyphenol tannin as inducer of mdtABC expression. The reduced ability of the mdtABC- and mdtUVW-deficient mutants to multiply in apple rootstock suggests that the efflux pumps are involved in resistance to plant antimicrobials, maybe including flavonoids, which were identified as substrates of both pumps. Furthermore, we found that the mdtABC operon belongs to the regulon of the two-component regulator BaeR suggesting a role of this RND transporter in the cell envelope stress response of E. amylovora.