4 years ago

Escherichia coli responds to environmental changes using enolasic degradosomes and stabilized DicF sRNA to alter cellular morphology [Genetics]

Escherichia coli responds to environmental changes using enolasic degradosomes and stabilized DicF sRNA to alter cellular morphology [Genetics]
Oleg N. Murashko, Sue Lin-Chao

Escherichia coli RNase E is an essential enzyme that forms multicomponent ribonucleolytic complexes known as “RNA degradosomes.” These complexes consist of four major components: RNase E, PNPase, RhlB RNA helicase, and enolase. However, the role of enolase in the RNase E/degradosome is not understood. Here, we report that presence of enolase in the RNase E/degradosome under anaerobic conditions regulates cell morphology, resulting in E. coli MG1655 cell filamentation. Under anaerobic conditions, enolase bound to the RNase E/degradosome stabilizes the small RNA (sRNA) DicF, i.e., the inhibitor of the cell division gene ftsZ, through chaperon protein Hfq-dependent regulation. RNase E/enolase distribution changes from membrane-associated patterns under aerobic to diffuse patterns under anaerobic conditions. When the enolase-RNase E/degradosome interaction is disrupted, the anaerobically induced characteristics disappear. We provide a mechanism by which E. coli uses enolase-bound degradosomes to switch from rod-shaped to filamentous form in response to anaerobiosis by regulating RNase E subcellular distribution, RNase E enzymatic activity, and the stability of the sRNA DicF required for the filamentous transition. In contrast to E. coli nonpathogenic strains, pathogenic E. coli strains predominantly have multiple copies of sRNA DicF in their genomes, with cell filamentation previously being linked to bacterial pathogenesis. Our data suggest a mechanism for bacterial cell filamentation during infection under anaerobic conditions.

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