MetR-Regulated Vibrio cholerae Metabolism Is Required for Virulence

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MetR-Regulated Vibrio cholerae Metabolism Is Required for Virulence

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Title: MetR-Regulated Vibrio cholerae Metabolism Is Required for Virulence
Author: Bogard, Ryan William; Davies, Bryan William; Mekalanos, John J.

Note: Order does not necessarily reflect citation order of authors.

Citation: Bogard, Ryan W., Bryan W. Davies, and John J. Mekalanos. 2012. MetR-regulated Vibrio cholerae metabolism is required for virulence. mBio 3(5): e00236-12.
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Abstract: LysR-type transcriptional regulators (LTTRs) are the largest, most diverse family of prokaryotic transcription factors, with regulatory roles spanning metabolism, cell growth and division, and pathogenesis. Using a sequence-defined transposon mutant library, we screened a panel of V. cholerae El Tor mutants to identify LTTRs required for host intestinal colonization. Surprisingly, out of 38 LTTRs, only one severely affected intestinal colonization in the suckling mouse model of cholera: the methionine metabolism regulator, MetR. Genetic analysis of genes influenced by MetR revealed that glyA1 and metJ were also required for intestinal colonization. Chromatin immunoprecipitation of MetR and quantitative reverse transcription-PCR (qRT-PCR) confirmed interaction with and regulation of glyA1, indicating that misregulation of glyA1 is likely responsible for the colonization defect observed in the metR mutant. The glyA1 mutant was auxotrophic for glycine but exhibited wild-type trimethoprim sensitivity, making folate deficiency an unlikely cause of its colonization defect. MetJ regulatory mutants are not auxotrophic but are likely altered in the regulation of amino acid-biosynthetic pathways, including those for methionine, glycine, and serine, and this misregulation likely explains its colonization defect. However, mutants defective in methionine, serine, and cysteine biosynthesis exhibited wild-type virulence, suggesting that these amino acids can be scavenged in vivo. Taken together, our results suggest that glycine biosynthesis may be required to alleviate an in vivo nutritional restriction in the mouse intestine; however, additional roles for glycine may exist. Irrespective of the precise nature of this requirement, this study illustrates the importance of pathogen metabolism, and the regulation thereof, as a virulence factor.
Published Version: doi:10.1128/mBio.00236-12
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