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  • 1. Chiruvella, Kishore K
    et al.
    Rajaei, Naghmeh
    Jonna, Venkateswara Rao
    Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Medical Biochemistry and Biophysics.
    Hofer, Anders
    Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Medical Biochemistry and Biophysics.
    Åstrom, Stefan U
    Biochemical Characterization of Kat1: a Domesticated hAT-Transposase that Induces DNA Hairpin Formation and MAT-Switching2016In: Scientific Reports, ISSN 2045-2322, E-ISSN 2045-2322, Vol. 6, article id 21671Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Kluyveromyces lactis hAT-transposase 1 (Kat1) generates hairpin-capped DNA double strand breaks leading to MAT-switching (MATa to MAT alpha). Using purified Kat1, we demonstrate the importance of terminal inverted repeats and subterminal repeats for its endonuclease activity. Kat1 promoted joining of the transposon end into a target DNA molecule in vitro, a biochemical feature that ties Kat1 to transposases. Gas-phase Electrophoretic Mobility Macromolecule analysis revealed that Kat1 can form hexamers when complexed with DNA. Kat1 point mutants were generated in conserved positions to explore structure-function relationships. Mutants of predicted catalytic residues abolished both DNA cleavage and strand-transfer. Interestingly, W576A predicted to be impaired for hairpin formation, was active for DNA cleavage and supported wild type levels of mating-type switching. In contrast, the conserved CXXH motif was critical for hairpin formation because Kat1 C402A/H405A completely blocked hairpinning and switching, but still generated nicks in the DNA. Mutations in the BED zinc-finger domain (C130A/C133A) resulted in an unspecific nuclease activity, presumably due to nonspecific DNA interaction. Kat1 mutants that were defective for cleavage in vitro were also defective for mating-type switching. Collectively, this study reveals Kat1 sharing extensive biochemical similarities with cut and paste transposons despite being domesticated and evolutionary diverged from active transposons.

  • 2. Crona, Mikael
    et al.
    Codo, Paula
    Jonna, Venkateswara Rao
    Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Medical Biochemistry and Biophysics.
    Hofer, Anders
    Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Medical Biochemistry and Biophysics.
    Fernandes, Aristi P.
    Tholander, Fredrik
    A ribonucleotide reductase inhibitor with deoxyribonucleoside-reversible cytotoxicity2016In: Molecular Oncology, ISSN 1574-7891, E-ISSN 1878-0261, Vol. 10, no 9, p. 1375-1386Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Ribonucleotide Reductase (RNR) is the sole enzyme that catalyzes the reduction of ribonucleotides into deoxyribonucleotides. Even though RNR is a recognized target for antiproliferative molecules, and the main target of the approved drug hydroxyurea, few new leads targeted to this enzyme have been developed. We have evaluated a recently identified set of RNR inhibitors with respect to inhibition of the human enzyme and cellular toxicity. One compound, NSC73735, is particularly interesting; it is specific for leukemia cells and is the first identified compound that hinders oligomerization of the mammalian large RNR subunit. Similar to hydroxyurea, it caused a disruption of the cell cycle distribution of cultured HL-60 cells. In contrast to hydroxyurea, the disruption was reversible, indicating higher specificity. NSC73735 thus defines a potential lead candidate for RNR-targeted anticancer drugs, as well as a chemical probe with better selectivity for RNR inhibition than hydroxyurea. 

  • 3. Grinberg, Inna
    et al.
    McGann, Matthew
    Lundin, Daniel
    Crona, Mikael
    Hasan, Mahmudal
    Jonna, Venkateswara Rao
    Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Medical Biochemistry and Biophysics.
    Loderer, Christoph
    Sahlin, Margareta
    Markova, Natalia
    Stenson, John
    Borovok, Ilya
    Hofer, Anders
    Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Medical Biochemistry and Biophysics.
    Logan, Derek
    Sjöberg, Britt-Marie
    Novel ATP-Cone-Driven Allosteric Regulation of Ribonucleotide Reductase Via the Radical-Generating Subunit2018In: Protein Science, ISSN 0961-8368, E-ISSN 1469-896X, Vol. 27, p. 87-88Article in journal (Other academic)
  • 4.
    Gupta, Arun A.
    et al.
    Umeå University, Faculty of Science and Technology, Department of Chemistry.
    Reinartz, Ines
    Karunanithy, Gogulan
    Spilotros, Alessandro
    Jonna, Venkateswara Rao
    Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Medical Biochemistry and Biophysics.
    Hofer, Anders
    Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Medical Biochemistry and Biophysics.
    Svergun, Dmitri I.
    Baldwin, Andrew J.
    Schug, Alexander
    Wolf-Watz, Magnus
    Umeå University, Faculty of Science and Technology, Department of Chemistry.
    Formation of a Secretion-Competent Protein Complex by a Dynamic Wrap-around Binding Mechanism2018In: Journal of Molecular Biology, ISSN 0022-2836, E-ISSN 1089-8638, Vol. 430, no 18, Part B, p. 3157-3169Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Bacterial virulence is typically initiated by translocation of effector or toxic proteins across host cell membranes. A class of gram-negative pathogenic bacteria including Yersinia pseudotuberculosis and Yersinia pestis accomplishes this objective with a protein assembly called the type III secretion system. Yersinia effector proteins (Yop) are presented to the translocation apparatus through formation of specific complexes with their cognate chaperones (Syc). In the complexes where the structure is available, the Yops are extended and wrap around their cognate chaperone. This structural architecture enables secretion of the Yop from the bacterium in early stages of translocation. It has been shown previously that the chaperone-binding domain of YopE is disordered in its isolation but becomes substantially more ordered in its wrap-around complex with its chaperone SycE. Here, by means of NMR spectroscopy, small-angle X-ray scattering and molecular modeling, we demonstrate that while the free chaperone-binding domain of YopH (YopHCBD) adopts a fully ordered and globular fold, it populates an elongated, wrap-around conformation when it engages in a specific complex with its chaperone SycH2. Hence, in contrast to YopE that is unstructured in its free state, YopH transits from a globular free state to an elongated chaperone-bound state. We demonstrate that a sparsely populated YopHCBD state has an elevated affinity for SycH2 and represents an intermediate in the formation of the protein complex. Our results suggest that Yersinia has evolved a binding mechanism where SycH2 passively stimulates an elongated YopH conformation that is presented to the type III secretion system in a secretion-competent conformation.

  • 5.
    Gupta, Arun
    et al.
    Umeå University.
    Reinartz, Ines
    Spilotros, Alessandro
    Jonna, Venkateswara R.
    Umeå University.
    Hofer, Anders
    Umeå University.
    Svergun, Dmitri I.
    Schug, Alexander
    Wolf-Watz, Magnus
    Umeå University.
    Global Disordering in Stereo-Specific Protein Association2017In: Biophysical Journal, ISSN 0006-3495, E-ISSN 1542-0086, Vol. 112, no 3, p. 33A-33AArticle in journal (Refereed)
  • 6. Johansson, Renzo
    et al.
    Jonna, Venkateswara Rao
    Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Medical Biochemistry and Biophysics.
    Kumar, Rohit
    Nayeri, Niloofar
    Lundin, Daniel
    Sjöberg, Britt-Marie
    Hofer, Anders
    Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Medical Biochemistry and Biophysics.
    Logan, Derek T
    Structural Mechanism of Allosteric Activity Regulation in a Ribonucleotide Reductase with Double ATP Cones2016In: Structure, ISSN 0969-2126, E-ISSN 1878-4186, Vol. 24, no 6, p. 906-917Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Ribonucleotide reductases (RNRs) reduce ribonucleotides to deoxyribonucleotides. Their overall activity is stimulated by ATP and downregulated by dATP via a genetically mobile ATP cone domain mediating the formation of oligomeric complexes with varying quaternary structures. The crystal structure and solution X-ray scattering data of a novel dATP-induced homotetramer of the Pseudomonas aeruginosa class I RNR reveal the structural bases for its unique properties, namely one ATP cone that binds two dATP molecules and a second one that is non-functional, binding no nucleotides. Mutations in the observed tetramer interface ablate oligomerization and dATP-induced inhibition but not the ability to bind dATP. Sequence analysis shows that the novel type of ATP cone may be widespread in RNRs. The present study supports a scenario in which diverse mechanisms for allosteric activity regulation are gained and lost through acquisition and evolutionary erosion of different types of ATP cone.

  • 7.
    Jonna, Venkateswara Rao
    Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Medical Biochemistry and Biophysics.
    Class I Ribonucleotide Reductases: overall activity regulation, oligomerization, and drug targeting2017Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    Ribonucleotide reductase (RNR) is a key enzyme in the de novo biosynthesis and homeostatic maintenance of all four DNA building blocks by being able to make deoxyribonucleotides from the corresponding ribonucleotides. It is important for the cell to control the production of a balanced supply of the dNTPs to minimize misincorporations in DNA. Because RNR is the rate-limiting enzyme in DNA synthesis, it is an important target for antimicrobial and antiproliferative molecules. The enzyme RNR has one of the most sophisticated allosteric regulations known in Nature with four allosteric effectors (ATP, dATP, dGTP, and dTTP) and two allosteric sites. One of the sites (s-site) controls the substrate specificity of the enzyme, whereas the other one (a-site) regulates the overall activity.  The a-site binds either dATP, which inhibits the enzyme or ATP that activates the enzyme. In eukaryotes, ATP activation is directly through the a-site and in E. coli it is a cross-talk effect between the a and s-sites. It is important to study and get more knowledge about the overall activity regulation of RNR, both because it has an important physiological function, but also because it may provide important clues to the design of antibacterial and antiproliferative drugs, which can target RNR.

    Previous studies of class I RNRs, the class found in nearly all eukaryotes and many prokaryotes have revealed that the overall activity regulation is dependent on the formation of oligomeric complexes. The class I RNR consists of two subunits, a large α subunit, and a small β subunit. The oligomeric complexes vary between different species with the mammalian and yeast enzymes cycle between structurally different active and inactive α6β2 complexes, and the E. coli enzyme cycles between active α2β2 and inactive α4β4 complexes. Because RNR equilibrates between many different oligomeric forms that are not resolved by most conventional methods, we have used a technique termed gas-phase electrophoretic macromolecule analysis (GEMMA). In the present studies, our focus is on characterizing both prokaryotic and mammalian class I RNRs. In one of our projects, we have studied the class I RNR from Pseudomonas aeruginosa and found that it represents a novel mechanism of overall activity allosteric regulation, which is different from the two known overall activity allosteric regulation found in E. coli and eukaryotic RNRs, respectively.  The structural differences between the bacterial and the eukaryote class I RNRs are interesting from a drug developmental viewpoint because they open up the possibility of finding inhibitors that selectively target the pathogens. The biochemical data that we have published in the above project was later supported by crystal structure and solution X-ray scattering data that we published together with Derek T. Logan`s research group.

    We have also studied the effect of a novel antiproliferative molecule, NSC73735, on the oligomerization of the human RNR large subunit. This collaborative research results showed that the molecule NSC73735 is the first reported non-nucleoside molecule which alters the oligomerization to inhibit human RNR and the molecule disrupts the cell cycle distribution in human leukemia cells.

  • 8.
    Jonna, Venkateswara Rao
    et al.
    Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Medical Biochemistry and Biophysics.
    Crona, Mikael
    Rofougaran, Reza
    Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Medical Biochemistry and Biophysics.
    Lundin, Daniel
    Johansson, Samuel
    Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Medical Biochemistry and Biophysics.
    Brännström, Kristoffer
    Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Medical Biochemistry and Biophysics.
    Sjöberg, Britt-Marie
    Hofer, Anders
    Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Medical Biochemistry and Biophysics.
    Diversity in Overall Activity Regulation of Ribonucleotide Reductase2015In: Journal of Biological Chemistry, ISSN 0021-9258, E-ISSN 1083-351X, Vol. 290, no 28, p. 17339-17348Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Ribonucleotide reductase (RNR) catalyzes the reduction of ribonucleotides to the corresponding deoxyribonucleotides, which are used as building blocks for DNA replication and repair. This process is tightly regulated via two allosteric sites, the specificity site (s-site) and the overall activity site (a-site). The a-site resides in an N-terminal ATP cone domain that binds dATP or ATP and functions as an on/off switch, whereas the composite s-site binds ATP, dATP, dTTP, or dGTP and determines which substrate to reduce. There are three classes of RNRs, and class I RNRs consist of different combinations of α and β subunits. In eukaryotic and Escherichia coli class I RNRs, dATP inhibits enzyme activity through the formation of inactive α6 and α4β4 complexes, respectively. Here we show that the Pseudomonas aeruginosa class I RNR has a duplicated ATP cone domain and represents a third mechanism of overall activity regulation. Each α polypeptide binds three dATP molecules, and the N-terminal ATP cone is critical for binding two of the dATPs because a truncated protein lacking this cone could only bind dATP to its s-site. ATP activates the enzyme solely by preventing dATP from binding. The dATP-induced inactive form is an α4 complex, which can interact with β2 to form a non-productive α4β2 complex. Other allosteric effectors induce a mixture of α2 and α4 forms, with the former being able to interact with β2 to form active α2β2 complexes. The unique features of the P. aeruginosa RNR are interesting both from evolutionary and drug discovery perspectives.

  • 9. Loderer, Christoph
    et al.
    Jonna, Venkateswara Rao
    Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Medical Biochemistry and Biophysics.
    Crona, Mikael
    Grinberg, Inna Rozman
    Sahlin, Margareta
    Hofer, Anders
    Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Medical Biochemistry and Biophysics.
    Lundin, Daniel
    Sjoeberg, Britt-Marie
    A unique cysteine-rich zinc finger domain present in a majority of class II ribonucleotide reductases mediates catalytic turnover2017In: Journal of Biological Chemistry, ISSN 0021-9258, E-ISSN 1083-351X, Vol. 292, no 46, p. 19044-19054Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Ribonucleotide reductases (RNRs) catalyze the reduction of ribonucleotides to the corresponding deoxyribonucleotides, used in DNA synthesis and repair. Two different mechanisms help deliver the required electrons to the RNR active site. Formate can be used as reductant directly in the active site, or glutaredoxins or thioredoxins reduce a C-terminal cysteine pair, which then delivers the electrons to the active site. Here, we characterized a novel cysteine-rich C-terminal domain (CRD), which is present in most class II RNRs found in microbes. The NrdJd-type RNR from the bacterium Stackebrandtia nassauensis was used as a model enzyme. We show that the CRD is involved in both higher oligomeric state formation and electron transfer to the active site. The CRD-dependent formation of high oligomers, such as tetramers and hexamers, was induced by addition of dATP or dGTP, but not of dTTP or dCTP. The electron transfer was mediated by an array of six cysteine residues at the very C-terminal end, which also coordinated a zinc atom. The electron transfer can also occur between subunits, depending on the enzyme's oligomeric state. An investigation of the native reductant of the system revealed no interaction with glutaredoxins or thioredoxins, indicating that this class II RNR uses a different electron source. Our results indicate that the CRD has a crucial role in catalytic turnover and a potentially new terminal reduction mechanism and suggest that the CRD is important for the activities of many class II RNRs.

  • 10. Mangold, Stefanie
    et al.
    Jonna, Venkateswara Rao
    Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Medical Biochemistry and Biophysics.
    Dopson, Mark
    Response of Acidithiobacillus caldus toward suboptimal pH conditions2013In: Extremophiles, ISSN 1431-0651, E-ISSN 1433-4909, Vol. 17, no 4, p. 689-696Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Maintenance of a circumneutral intracellular pH is important for any organism. Acidophilic microorganisms thrive at low pH while maintaining their intracellular pH around 6.5. However, the mechanisms contributing to acidophile pH homeostasis are not well characterized. The authors investigated the proteomic response and cytoplasmic membrane fatty acid profiles of Acidithiobacillus caldus toward three pH values: 1.1, 2.5, and 4.0. Major rearrangements were observed but lower pH elicited larger changes. Differentially expressed transcription factors suggested tight transcriptional control of pH induced genes. Enzymes involved in sulfur metabolism were up-regulated at pH 1.1 suggesting either that: (1) cells required more energy for maintenance or (2) increased metabolic activity was a specific acid stress response to export intracellular protons via 1A degrees electron transport proton pumps. Furthermore, glutamate decarboxylase, an important enzyme in Escherichia coli acid resistance, was uniquely expressed at pH 1.1. Other proteins previously shown to be involved in neutrophilic acid response, such as spermidine synthase, PspA, and toluene tolerance protein, were differentially expressed in At. caldus but require further investigation to show a direct link to pH homeostasis. Their roles in acidophilic organisms are discussed. Active modulation of fatty acid profiles was detected and suggested a more rigid membrane at low pH.

  • 11. Rozman Grinberg, Inna
    et al.
    Lundin, Daniel
    Hasan, Mahmudul
    Crona, Mikael
    Rao Jonna, Venkateswara
    Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Medical Biochemistry and Biophysics.
    Loderer, Chrishtoph
    Sahlin, Margareta
    Markova, Natalia
    Borovok, Ilya
    Berggren, Gustav
    Hofer, Anders
    Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Medical Biochemistry and Biophysics.
    Logan, Derek T.
    Sjöberg, Britt-Marie
    Novel ATP-cone-driven allosteric regulation of ribonucleotide reductase via the radical-generating subunit2018In: eLIFE, E-ISSN 2050-084X, Vol. 7, article id e31529Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Ribonucleotide reductases (RNRs) are key enzymes in DNA metabolism, with allosteric mechanisms controlling substrate specificity and overall activity. In RNRs, the activity master-switch, the ATP-cone, has been found exclusively in the catalytic subunit. In two class I RNR subclasses whose catalytic subunit lacks the ATP-cone, we discovered ATP-cones in the radical-generating subunit. The ATP-cone in the Leeuwenhoekiella blandensis radical-generating subunit regulates activity via quaternary structure induced by binding of nucleotides. ATP induces enzymatically competent dimers, whereas dATP induces non-productive tetramers, resulting in different holoenzymes. The tetramer forms by interactions between ATP-cones, shown by a 2.45 A crystal structure. We also present evidence for an (MnMnIV)-Mn-III metal center. In summary, lack of an ATP-cone domain in the catalytic subunit was compensated by transfer of the domain to the radical-generating subunit. To our knowledge, this represents the first observation of transfer of an allosteric domain between components of the same enzyme complex.

  • 12.
    Sadanandan, Sajna Anand
    et al.
    Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Molecular Biology (Faculty of Medicine).
    Ekström, Jens-Ola
    Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Molecular Biology (Faculty of Medicine). Institute of Biomedical Technology, University of Tampere, FI-33520 Tampere, Finland.
    Jonna, Venkateswara Rao
    Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Medical Biochemistry and Biophysics.
    Hofer, Anders
    Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Medical Biochemistry and Biophysics.
    Hultmark, Dan
    Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Molecular Biology (Faculty of Medicine). Institute of Biomedical Technology, University of Tampere, FI-33520 Tampere, Finland.
    VP3 is crucial for the stability of Nora virus virions2016In: Virus Research, ISSN 0168-1702, E-ISSN 1872-7492, Vol. 223, p. 20-27Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Nora virus is an enteric virus that causes persistent, non-pathological infection in Drosophila melanogaster. It replicates in the fly gut and is transmitted via the fecal-oral route. Nora virus has a single-stranded positive-sense RNA genome, which is translated in four open reading frames. Reading frame three encodes the VP3 protein, the structure and function of which we have investigated in this work. We have shown that VP3 is a trimer that has an α-helical secondary structure, with a functionally important coiled-coil domain. In order to identify the role of VP3 in the Nora virus life cycle, we constructed VP3-mutants using the cDNA clone of the virus. Our results show that VP3 does not have a role in the actual assembly of the virus particles, but virions that lack VP3 or harbor VP3 with a disrupted coiled coil domain are incapable of transmission via the fecal-oral route. Removing the region downstream of the putative coiled coil appears to have an effect on the fitness of the virus but does not hamper its replication or transmission. We also found that the VP3 protein and particularly the coiled coil domain are crucial for the stability of Nora virus virions when exposed to heat or proteases. Hence, we propose that VP3 is imperative to Nora virus virions as it confers stability to the viral capsid.

  • 13.
    Schmitt, Andreas
    et al.
    Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Medical Biochemistry and Biophysics.
    Jiang, Kai
    Camacho, Martha I.
    Jonna, Venkateswara Rao
    Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Medical Biochemistry and Biophysics.
    Hofer, Anders
    Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Medical Biochemistry and Biophysics.
    Westerlund, Fredrik
    Christie, Peter J.
    Berntsson, Ronnie P-A.
    Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Medical Biochemistry and Biophysics.
    PrgB promotes aggregation, biofilm formation, and conjugation through DNA binding and compaction2018In: Molecular Microbiology, ISSN 0950-382X, E-ISSN 1365-2958, Vol. 109, no 3, p. 291-305Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Gram-positive bacteria deploy type IV secretion systems (T4SSs) to facilitate horizontal gene transfer. The T4SSs of Gram-positive bacteria rely on surface adhesins as opposed to conjugative pili to facilitate mating. Enterococcus faecalis PrgB is a surface adhesin that promotes mating pair formation and robust biofilm development in an extracellular DNA (eDNA) dependent manner. Here, we report the structure of the adhesin domain of PrgB. The adhesin domain binds and compacts DNA in vitro. In vivo PrgB deleted of its adhesin domain does not support cellular aggregation, biofilm development and conjugative DNA transfer. PrgB also binds lipoteichoic acid (LTA), which competes with DNA binding. We propose that PrgB binding and compaction of eDNA facilitates cell aggregation and plays an important role in establishment of early biofilms in mono- or polyspecies settings. Within these biofilms, PrgB mediates formation and stabilization of direct cell-cell contacts through alternative binding of cell-bound LTA, which in turn promotes establishment of productive mating junctions and efficient intra- or inter-species T4SS-mediated gene transfer.

  • 14. Zammit, Carla M.
    et al.
    Mangold, Stefanie
    Umeå University, Faculty of Science and Technology, Department of Molecular Biology (Faculty of Science and Technology).
    Jonna, Venkateswara Rao
    Umeå University, Faculty of Science and Technology, Department of Molecular Biology (Faculty of Science and Technology).
    Mutch, Lesley A.
    Watling, Helen R.
    Dopson, Mark
    Umeå University, Faculty of Science and Technology, Department of Molecular Biology (Faculty of Science and Technology).
    Watkin, Elizabeth L. J.
    Bioleaching in brackish waters-effect of chloride ions on the acidophile population and proteomes of model species2012In: Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology, ISSN 0175-7598, E-ISSN 1432-0614, Vol. 93, no 1, p. 319-329Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    High concentrations of chloride ions inhibit the growth of acidophilic microorganisms used in biomining, a problem particularly relevant to Western Australian and Chilean biomining operations. Despite this, little is known about the mechanisms acidophiles adopt in order to tolerate high chloride ion concentrations. This study aimed to investigate the impact of increasing concentrations of chloride ions on the population dynamics of a mixed culture during pyrite bioleaching and apply proteomics to elucidate how two species from this mixed culture alter their proteomes under chloride stress. A mixture consisting of well-known biomining microorganisms and an enrichment culture obtained from an acidic saline drain were tested for their ability to bioleach pyrite in the presence of 0, 3.5, 7, and 20 g L(-1) NaCl. Microorganisms from the enrichment culture were found to out-compete the known biomining microorganisms, independent of the chloride ion concentration. The proteomes of the Gram-positive acidophile Acidimicrobium ferrooxidans and the Gram-negative acidophile Acidithiobacillus caldus grown in the presence or absence of chloride ions were investigated. Analysis of differential expression showed that acidophilic microorganisms adopted several changes in their proteomes in the presence of chloride ions, suggesting the following strategies to combat the NaCl stress: adaptation of the cell membrane, the accumulation of amino acids possibly as a form of osmoprotectant, and the expression of a YceI family protein involved in acid and osmotic-related stress.

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