Bacillus anthracis is a gram-positive bacterial organism responsible for anthrax. This organism has two pathogenic plasmids: pX01 and pX02. The genetic function of pX01, which comprises about 198 kb, is not known, except for a region called the pathogenic island, which contains three genes - pag, lef. and cya - that code for three toxic proteins. A 2-D difference gel electrophoresis (2-D DIGE) system was used to verify the existence of proteins controlled by the pX01 plasmid, and protein regulation data were obtained using DeCyder software. A total of 1728 proteins were identified in the wild-type strain of this organism and 1684 in the pX01 plasmid. Twenty-seven of these proteins disappeared and eight appeared when the pX01 plasmid was removed. An additional 52 proteins were downregulated and 15 were upregulated when this plasmid was removed. A total of 102 proteins have been identified using the MALDI-TOF method of analysis, including 49 whose functions are unknown. Among these, 31 participate in metabolic processes, two in cellular processes, 15 in the processing of genetic information, and five in the processing of extracellular information. Another seven proteins participate in bacterial virulence and pathogenesis. We investigated the functions of these proteins in other bacteria, particularly the B. anthracis derivative H9041. Bacterial growth differed between pX01+/pX02+ B. anthracis and its pX01-/pX02+ derivative as did the cytotoxicity of macrophages infected by pX01+/pX02+ B. anthracis and the pX01-pX02+ derivative. We also found that S100B protein levels increased in the host infected with pX01+/pX02+ B. anthratis or its pX01-/pX02+ derivative. These data suggest that the pX01 plasmid plays a key role in the regulation of protein functions in B. anthracis.
- B. anthracis
- Matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization time of flight mass spectrometry
- pX01 plasmid
- Two-dimensional difference gel electrophoresis
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Molecular Biology