Tandem attenuators control expression of the Salmonella mgtCBR virulence operon

Eun Jin Lee, Eduardo A. Groisman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

29 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The mgtCBR operon from Salmonella enterica serovar Typhimurium specifies the virulence protein MgtC, the Mg2+ transporter MgtB and the regulatory peptide MgtR. The mgtCBR transcript includes a long leader region harbouring two short open reading frames (ORFs). Translation of these ORFs is anticipated to impact the formation of particular stem-loop structures and control transcription of the coding region by an attenuation-like mechanism. We previously reported that ORF mgtM enables Salmonella to promote transcription of the mgtC and mgtB coding regions when experiencing a rise in cytoplasmic ATP levels. We now show that the proline codon-rich ORF mgtP mediates an increase in transcription of the mgtC and mgtB coding regions under conditions predicted to decrease the levels of proline-charged tRNAPro. The high ATP and low proline signals act independently in an additive form. Replacing conserved mgtP proline codons with codons specifying other amino acids abolished the response to proline limitation but had no effect on the response to ATP. Substitution of conserved adenine nucleotides in mgtM abolished the response to ATP but had no effect in the response to proline limitation. This provides a singular example of a leader mRNA with tandem attenuators responding to different signals.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)212-224
Number of pages13
JournalMolecular Microbiology
Volume86
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2012 Oct

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Microbiology
  • Molecular Biology

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