5 years ago

Synthesis of the compatible solute proline by Bacillus subtilis: point mutations rendering the osmotically controlled proHJ promoter hyperactive

Monika Bleisteiner, Erhard Bremer, Leif Steil, Praveen Kumar Sappa, Tamara Hoffmann, Uwe Völker, Ulrike Mäder
The ProJ and ProH enzymes of Bacillus subtilis catalyse together with ProA (ProJ-ProA-ProH), osmostress-adaptive synthesis of the compatible solute proline. The proA-encoded gamma-glutamyl phosphate reductase is also used for anabolic proline synthesis (ProB-ProA-ProI). Transcription of the proHJ operon is osmotically inducible whereas that of the proBA operon is not. Targeted and quantitative proteome analysis revealed that the amount of ProA is not limiting for the interconnected anabolic and osmostress-responsive proline production routes. A key player for enhanced osmostress-adaptive proline production is the osmotically regulated proHJ promoter. We used site-directed mutagenesis to study the salient features of this stress-responsive promoter. Two important features were identified: (i) deviations of the proHJ promoter from the consensus sequence of SigA-type promoters serve to keep transcription low under non-inducing growth conditions, while still allowing a finely tuned induction of transcriptional activity when the external osmolarity is increased and (ii) a suboptimal spacer length for SigA-type promoters of either 16-bp (the natural proHJ promoter), or 18-bp (a synthetic promoter variant) is strictly required to allow regulation of promoter activity in proportion to the external salinity. Collectively, our data suggest that changes in the local DNA structure at the proHJ promoter are important determinants for osmostress-inducibility of transcription.

Publisher URL: http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/resolve/doi

DOI: 10.1111/1462-2920.13870

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