Sakuranetin, the major flavonoid phytoalexin in rice, can be induced by ultraviolet (UV) irradiation, treatment with CuCl2 or jasmonic acid (JA), or phytopathogenic infection. In addition to sakuranetin’s biological significance on disease resistance in rice, its broad bioactivities have recently been described. Results from these studies have shown that sakuranetin is a useful compound as a plant antibiotic and a potential pharmaceutical agent. Sakuranetin is biosynthesized from naringenin, a precursor of sakuranetin, by naringenin 7-O-methyltransferase (NOMT), but the relevant gene has not yet been identified in rice. Recently, we identified the OsNOMT gene, which is involved in the final step of sakuranetin biosynthesis in rice. In previous studies, OsNOMT was purified to apparent homogeneity from UV-treated wild-type rice leaves; however, the purified protein, termed OsCOMT1, exhibited caffeic acid 3-O-methyltransferase (COMT) activity, but not NOMT activity. Based on the analysis of an oscomt1 T-DNA tagged mutant, we determined that OsCOMT1 did not contribute to sakuranetin production in rice in vivo. Therefore, we took advantage of the oscomt1 mutant to purify OsNOMT. A crude protein preparation from UV-treated oscomt1 leaves was subjected to three sequential purification steps resulting in a 400-fold purification from the crude enzyme preparation with a minor band at an apparent molecular mass of 40 kDa in the purest enzyme preparation. Matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization time of flight/time of flight analysis showed that the 40 kDa protein band included two O-methyltransferase-like proteins, but one of the proteins encoded by Os12g0240900 exhibited clear NOMT activity; thus, this gene was designated OsNOMT. Gene expression was induced by treatment with jasmonic acid in rice leaves prior to sakuranetin accumulation, and the recombinant protein showed reasonable kinetic properties to NOMT. Identification of the OsNOMT gene enables the production of large amounts of sakuranetin through transgenic rice and microorganisms. This finding also allows for the generation of disease-resistant and sakuranetin biofortified rice in the future.
Oryza sativa; disease resistance; flavonoid; phytoalexin; O-methyltransferase; sakuranetin
OsWRKY76 encodes a group IIa WRKY transcription factor of rice. The expression of OsWRKY76 was induced within 48h after inoculation with rice blast fungus (Magnaporthe oryzae), and by wounding, low temperature, benzothiadiazole, and abscisic acid. Green fluorescent protein-fused OsWRKY76 localized to the nuclei in rice epidermal cells. OsWRKY76 showed sequence-specific DNA binding to the W-box element in vitro and exhibited W-box-mediated transcriptional repressor activity in cultured rice cells. Overexpression of OsWRKY76 in rice plants resulted in drastically increased susceptibility to M. oryzae, but improved tolerance to cold stress. Microarray analysis revealed that overexpression of OsWRKY76 suppresses the induction of a specific set of PR genes and of genes involved in phytoalexin synthesis after inoculation with blast fungus, consistent with the observation that the levels of phytoalexins in the transgenic rice plants remained significantly lower than those in non-transformed control plants. Furthermore, overexpression of OsWRKY76 led to the increased expression of abiotic stress-associated genes such as peroxidase and lipid metabolism genes. These results strongly suggest that OsWRKY76 plays dual and opposing roles in blast disease resistance and cold tolerance.
Blast disease resistance; cold stress; phytoalexin; rice; transcriptional repressor; WRKY.
The terminal oxygenase component (Oxy) of carbazole 1,9a-dioxygenase (CARDO) catalyzes dihydroxylation of the aromatic ring. The Oxy of CARDO from Novosphingobium sp. KA1 was crystallized and the crystals diffracted to a resolution of 2.1 Å.
Carbazole 1,9a-dioxygenase (CARDO) is the initial dioxygenase in the carbazole-degradation pathway of Novosphingobium sp. KA1. The CARDO from KA1 consists of a terminal oxygenase (Oxy), a putidaredoxin-type ferredoxin and a ferredoxin reductase. The Oxy from Novosphingobium sp. KA1 was crystallized at 277 K using the hanging-drop vapour-diffusion method with ammonium sulfate as the precipitant. Diffraction data were collected to a resolution of 2.1 Å. The crystals belonged to the monoclinic space group P21. Self-rotation function analysis suggested that the asymmetric unit contained two Oxy trimers; the Matthews coefficient and solvent content were calculated to be 5.9 Å3 Da−1 and 79.1%, respectively.
carbazole; Novosphingobium; Rieske nonhaem iron oxygenases; sphingomonads; terminal oxygenases
Harpin proteins as elicitor derived from plant gram negative bacteria such as Xanthomonas oryzae pv. oryzae (Xoo), Erwinia amylovora induce disease resistance in plants by activating multiple defense responses. However, it is unclear whether phytoalexin production and ROS burst are involved in the disease resistance conferred by the expression of the harpinXoo protein in rice. In this article, ectopic expression of hrf1 in rice enhanced resistance to bacterial blight. Accompanying with the activation of genes related to the phytoalexin biosynthesis pathway in hrf1-transformed rice, phytoalexins quickly and consistently accumulated concurrent with the limitation of bacterial growth rate. Moreover, the hrf1-transformed rice showed an increased ability for ROS scavenging and decreased hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) concentration. Furthermore, the localization and relative quantification of silicon deposition in rice leaves was detected by scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and energy-dispersive X-ray spectrometer (EDS). Finally, the transcript levels of defense response genes increased in transformed rice. These results show a correlation between Xoo resistance and phytoalexin production, H2O2, silicon deposition and defense gene expression in hrf1-transformed rice. These data are significant because they provide evidence for a better understanding the role of defense responses in the incompatible interaction between bacterial disease and hrf1-transformed plants. These data also supply an opportunity for generating nonspecific resistance to pathogens.
Dihydroxylation of tandemly linked aromatic carbons in a cis-configuration, catalyzed by multicomponent oxygenase systems known as Rieske nonheme iron oxygenase systems (ROs), often constitute the initial step of aerobic degradation pathways for various aromatic compounds. Because such RO reactions inherently govern whether downstream degradation processes occur, novel oxygenation mechanisms involving oxygenase components of ROs (RO-Os) is of great interest. Despite substantial progress in structural and physicochemical analyses, no consensus exists on the chemical steps in the catalytic cycles of ROs. Thus, determining whether conformational changes at the active site of RO-O occur by substrate and/or oxygen binding is important. Carbazole 1,9a-dioxygenase (CARDO), a RO member consists of catalytic terminal oxygenase (CARDO-O), ferredoxin (CARDO-F), and ferredoxin reductase. We have succeeded in determining the crystal structures of oxidized CARDO-O, oxidized CARDO-F, and both oxidized and reduced forms of the CARDO-O: CARDO-F binary complex.
In the present study, we determined the crystal structures of the reduced carbazole (CAR)-bound, dioxygen-bound, and both CAR- and dioxygen-bound CARDO-O: CARDO-F binary complex structures at 1.95, 1.85, and 2.00 Å resolution. These structures revealed the conformational changes that occur in the catalytic cycle. Structural comparison between complex structures in each step of the catalytic mechanism provides several implications, such as the order of substrate and dioxygen bindings, the iron-dioxygen species likely being Fe(III)-(hydro)peroxo, and the creation of room for dioxygen binding and the promotion of dioxygen binding in desirable fashion by preceding substrate binding.
The RO catalytic mechanism is proposed as follows: When the Rieske cluster is reduced, substrate binding induces several conformational changes (e.g., movements of the nonheme iron and the ligand residue) that create room for oxygen binding. Dioxygen bound in a side-on fashion onto nonheme iron is activated by reduction to the peroxo state [Fe(III)-(hydro)peroxo]. This state may react directly with the bound substrate, or O–O bond cleavage may occur to generate Fe(V)-oxo-hydroxo species prior to the reaction. After producing a cis-dihydrodiol, the product is released by reducing the nonheme iron. This proposed scheme describes the catalytic cycle of ROs and provides important information for a better understanding of the mechanism.
The ferredoxin reductase component of carbazole 1,9a-dioxygenase (Red) is involved in electron transfer from NAD(P)H to ferredoxin. The class IIA Red from Novosphingobium sp. KA1 was crystallized and the crystal diffracted to a resolution of 1.58 Å.
Carbazole 1,9a-dioxygenase (CARDO) is the initial enzyme of the carbazole-degradation pathway. The CARDO of Novosphingobium sp. KA1 consists of a terminal oxygenase, a putidaredoxin-type ferredoxin and a ferredoxin-NADH oxidoreductase (Red) and is classified as a class IIA Rieske oxygenase. Red from KA1 was crystallized at 278 K by the hanging-drop vapour-diffusion method using PEG 4000. The crystal diffracted to 1.58 Å resolution and belonged to space group P32, with unit-cell parameters a = b = 92.2, c = 78.6 Å, α = γ = 90, β = 120°. Preliminary analysis of the X-ray diffraction data revealed that the asymmetric unit contained two Red monomers. The crystal appeared to be a merohedral twin, with a twin fraction of 0.32 and twin law (−h, −k, l).
carbazole; Rieske nonhaem iron oxygenases; ferredoxin reductases
Histone-like protein H1 (H-NS) family proteins are nucleoid-associated proteins (NAPs) conserved among many bacterial species. The IncP-7 plasmid pCAR1 is transmissible among various Pseudomonas strains and carries a gene encoding the H-NS family protein, Pmr. Pseudomonas putida KT2440 is a host of pCAR1, which harbors five genes encoding the H-NS family proteins PP_1366 (TurA), PP_3765 (TurB), PP_0017 (TurC), PP_3693 (TurD), and PP_2947 (TurE). Quantitative reverse transcription-PCR (qRT-PCR) demonstrated that the presence of pCAR1 does not affect the transcription of these five genes and that only pmr, turA, and turB were primarily transcribed in KT2440(pCAR1). In vitro pull-down assays revealed that Pmr strongly interacted with itself and with TurA, TurB, and TurE. Transcriptome comparisons of the pmr disruptant, KT2440, and KT2440(pCAR1) strains indicated that pmr disruption had greater effects on the host transcriptome than did pCAR1 carriage. The transcriptional levels of some genes that increased with pCAR1 carriage, such as the mexEF-oprN efflux pump genes and parI, reverted with pmr disruption to levels in pCAR1-free KT2440. Transcriptional levels of putative horizontally acquired host genes were not altered by pCAR1 carriage but were altered by pmr disruption. Identification of genome-wide Pmr binding sites by ChAP-chip (chromatin affinity purification coupled with high-density tiling chip) analysis demonstrated that Pmr preferentially binds to horizontally acquired DNA regions. The Pmr binding sites overlapped well with the location of the genes differentially transcribed following pmr disruption on both the plasmid and the chromosome. Our findings indicate that Pmr is a key factor in optimizing gene transcription on pCAR1 and the host chromosome.
Bacterial nucleoid-associated proteins (NAPs) form nucleoprotein complexes and influence the expression of genes. Recent studies have shown that some plasmids carry genes encoding NAP homologs, which play important roles in transcriptional regulation networks between plasmids and host chromosomes. In this study, we determined the distributions of the well-known NAPs Fis, H-NS, HU, IHF, and Lrp and the newly found NAPs MvaT and NdpA among the whole-sequenced 1382 plasmids found in Gram-negative bacteria. Comparisons between NAP distributions and plasmid features (size, G+C content, and putative transferability) were also performed. We found that larger plasmids frequently have NAP gene homologs. Plasmids with H-NS gene homologs had less G+C content. It should be noted that plasmids with the NAP gene homolog also carried the relaxase gene involved in the conjugative transfer of plasmids more frequently than did those without the NAP gene homolog, implying that plasmid-encoded NAP homologs positively contribute to transmissible plasmids.
The ferredoxin component of carbazole 1,9a-dioxygenase (CARDO-F) is involved in an electron-transfer reaction. The CARDO-F from Novosphingobium sp. KA1 was crystallized under anaerobic conditions and diffracted to a resolution of 1.9 Å.
Novosphingobium sp. KA1 uses carbazole 1,9a-dioxygenase (CARDO) as the first dioxygenase in its carbazole-degradation pathway. The CARDO of KA1 contains a terminal oxygenase component and two electron-transfer components: ferredoxin and ferredoxin reductase. In contrast to the CARDO systems of other species, the ferredoxin component of KA1 is a putidaredoxin-type protein. This novel ferredoxin was crystallized at 293 K by the hanging-drop vapour-diffusion method using PEG MME 550 as the precipitant under anaerobic conditions. The crystals belong to space group C2221 and diffraction data were collected to a resolution of 1.9 Å (the diffraction limit was 1.6 Å).
carbazole; putidaredoxin-type proteins; Rieske nonhaem iron oxygenases
We determined the effect of the host on the function and structure of the nearly identical IncP-7 carbazole-degradative plasmids pCAR1.1 and pCAR1.2. We constructed Pseudomonas aeruginosa PAO1(pCAR1.2) and P. fluorescens Pf0-1Km(pCAR1.2) and compared their growth on carbazole- and succinate-containing media with that of P. putida KT2440(pCAR1.1). We also assessed the stability of the genetic structures of the plasmids in each of the three hosts. Pf0-1Km(pCAR1.2) showed dramatically delayed growth when carbazole was supplied as the sole carbon source, while the three strains grew at nearly the same rate on succinate. Among the carbazole-grown Pf0-1Km(pCAR1.2) cells, two types of deficient strains appeared and dominated the population; such dominance was not observed in the other two strains or for succinate-grown Pf0-1Km(pCAR1.2). Genetic analysis showed that the two deficient strains possessed pCAR1.2 derivatives in which the carbazole-degradative car operon was deleted or its regulatory gene, antR, was deleted by homologous recombination between insertion sequences. From genomic information and quantitative reverse transcription-PCR analyses of the genes involved in carbazole mineralization by Pf0-1Km(pCAR1.2), we found that the cat genes on the chromosome of Pf0-1Km, which are necessary for the degradation of catechol (a toxic intermediate in the carbazole catabolic pathway), were not induced in the presence of carbazole. The resulting accumulation of catechol may have enabled the strain that lost its carbazole-degrading ability to have overall higher fitness than the wild-type strain. These results suggest that the functions of the chromosomal genes contributed to the selection of plasmid derivatives with altered structures.
The ferredoxin component of carbazole 1,9a-dioxygenase from N. aromaticivorans IC177 was crystallized and diffraction data were collected to 2.0 Å resolution.
Carbazole 1,9a-dioxygenase (CARDO) catalyzes the dihydroxylation of carbazole by angular position (C9a) carbon bonding to the imino nitrogen and its adjacent C1 carbon. CARDO consists of a terminal oxygenase component and two electron-transfer components: ferredoxin and ferredoxin reductase. The ferredoxin component of carbazole 1,9a-dioxygenase from Nocardioides aromaticivorans IC177 was crystallized at 293 K using the hanging-drop vapour-diffusion method with ammonium sulfate as the precipitant. The crystals, which were improved by macroseeding, diffract to 2.0 Å resolution and belong to space group P41212.
ferredoxins; carbazole; Rieske nonhaem iron oxygenase system; Rieske-type proteins
The NAD(P)H:ferredoxin oxidoreductase in carbazole 1,9a-dioxygenase from Janthinobacterium sp. J3 was crystallized and diffraction data were collected to 2.60 Å resolution.
Carbazole 1,9a-dioxygenase (CARDO), which consists of an oxygenase component (CARDO-O) and the electron-transport components ferredoxin (CARDO-F) and ferredoxin reductase (CARDO-R), catalyzes dihydroxylation at the C1 and C9a positions of carbazole. CARDO-R was crystallized at 277 K using the hanging-drop vapour-diffusion method with the precipitant PEG 8000. Two crystal types (types I and II) were obtained. The type I crystal diffracted to a maximum resolution of 2.80 Å and belonged to space group P42212, with unit-cell parameters a = b = 158.7, c = 81.4 Å. The type II crystal was obtained in drops from which type I crystals had been removed; it diffracted to 2.60 Å resolution and belonged to the same space group, with unit-cell parameters a = b = 161.8, c = 79.5 Å.
angular dioxygenases; NAD(P)H:ferredoxin oxidoreductases; Rieske nonhaem iron oxygenase system; electron transfer; carbazole
Plasmids are extrachromosomal elements that replicate autonomously, and many can be transmitted between bacterial cells through conjugation. Although the transcription pattern of genes on a plasmid can be altered by a change in host background, the expression range of plasmid genes that will result in phenotypic variation has not been quantitatively investigated.
Using a microarray with evenly tiled probes at a density of 9 bp, we mapped and quantified the transcripts of the carbazole catabolic plasmid pCAR1 in its original host Pseudomonas resinovorans CA10 and the transconjugant P. putida KT2440(pCAR1) during growth on either carbazole or succinate as the sole carbon source. We identified the operons in pCAR1, which consisted of nearly identical transcription units despite the difference in host background during growth on the same carbon source. In accordance with previous studies, the catabolic operons for carbazole degradation were upregulated during growth on carbazole in both hosts. However, our tiling array results also showed that several operons flanking the transfer gene cluster were transcribed at significantly higher levels in the transconjugant than in the original host. The number of transcripts and the positions of the transcription start sites agreed with our quantitative RT-PCR and primer extension results.
Our tiling array results indicate that the levels of transcription for the operons on a plasmid can vary by host background. High-resolution mapping using an unbiased tiling array is a valuable tool for the simultaneous identification and quantification of prokaryotic transcriptomes including polycistronic operons and non-coding RNAs.
The terminal oxygenase component of carbazole 1,9a-dioxygenase from N. aromaticivorans IC177 was crystallized and diffraction data were collected to 2.30 Å resolution.
Carbazole 1,9a-dioxygenase (CARDO) catalyzes the dihydroxylation of carbazole by angular-position (C9a) carbon bonding to the imino nitrogen and its adjacent C1 carbon. CARDO consists of a terminal oxygenase component and two electron-transfer components: ferredoxin and ferredoxin reductase. The terminal oxygenase component (43.9 kDa) of carbazole 1,9a-dioxygenase from Nocardioides aromaticivorans IC177 was crystallized at 293 K using the hanging-drop vapour-diffusion method with PEG 8000 as the precipitant. The crystals diffract to 2.3 Å resolution and belong to space group C2.
angular dioxygenases; carbazole; Rieske nonhaem iron oxygenase system; Rieske-type protein
Pseudomonas putida DS1 is able to utilize dimethyl sulfone as a sulfur source. Expression of the sfnFG operon responsible for dimethyl sulfone oxygenation is directly regulated by a σ54-dependent transcriptional activator, SfnR, which is encoded within the sfnECR operon. We investigated the transcription mechanism for the sulfate starvation-induced expression of these sfn operons. Using an in vivo transcription assay and in vitro DNA-binding experiments, we revealed that SfnR negatively regulates the expression of sfnECR by binding to the downstream region of the transcription start point. Additionally, we demonstrated that a LysR-type transcriptional regulator, CysB, directly activates the expression of sfnECR by binding to its upstream region. CysB is a master regulator that controls the sulfate starvation response of the sfn operons, as is the case for the sulfonate utilization genes of Escherichia coli, although CysBDS1 appeared to differ from that of E. coli CysB in terms of the effect of O-acetylserine on DNA-binding ability. Furthermore, we investigated what effector molecules repress the expression of sfnFG and sfnECR in vivo by using the disruptants of the sulfate assimilatory genes cysNC and cysI. The measurements of mRNA levels of the sfn operons in these gene disruptants suggested that the expression of sfnFG is repressed by sulfate itself while the expression of sfnECR is repressed by the downstream metabolites in the sulfate assimilatory pathway, such as sulfide and cysteine. These results indicate that SfnR plays a role independent of CysB in the sulfate starvation-induced expression of the sfn operons.
The IncP-7 plasmid pCAR1 of Pseudomonas resinovorans CA10 confers the ability to degrade carbazole upon transfer to the recipient strain P. putida KT2440. We designed a customized whole-genome oligonucleotide microarray to study the coordinated expression of pCAR1 and the chromosome in the transconjugant strain KT2440(pCAR1). First, the transcriptome of KT2440(pCAR1) during growth with carbazole as the sole carbon source was compared to that during growth with succinate. The carbazole catabolic car and ant operons were induced, along with the chromosomal cat and pca genes involved in the catechol branch of the β-ketoadipate pathway. Additionally, the regulatory gene antR encoding the AraC/XylS family transcriptional activator specific for car and ant operons was upregulated. The characterization of the antR promoter revealed that antR is transcribed from an RpoN-dependent promoter, suggesting that the successful expression of the carbazole catabolic operons depends on whether the chromosome contains the specific RpoN-dependent activator. Next, to analyze whether the horizontal transfer of a plasmid alters the transcription network of its host chromosome, we compared the chromosomal transcriptomes of KT2440(pCAR1) and KT2440 under the same growth conditions. Only subtle changes were caused by the transfer of pCAR1, except for the significant induction of the hypothetical gene PP3700, designated parI, which encodes a putative ParA-like ATPase with an N-terminal Xre-type DNA-binding motif. Further transcriptional analyses showed that the parI promoter was positively regulated by ParI itself and the pCAR1-encoded protein ParA.
We determined the complete 254,797-bp nucleotide sequence of the plasmid pCAR3, a carbazole-degradative plasmid from Sphingomonas sp. strain KA1. A region of about 65 kb involved in replication and conjugative transfer showed similarity to a region of plasmid pNL1 isolated from the aromatic-degrading Novosphingobium aromaticivorans strain F199. The presence of many insertion sequences, transposons, repeat sequences, and their remnants suggest plasticity of this plasmid in genetic structure. Although pCAR3 is thought to carry clustered genes for conjugative transfer, a filter-mating assay between KA1 and a pCAR3-cured strain (KA1W) was unsuccessful, indicating that pCAR3 might be deficient in conjugative transfer. Several degradative genes were found on pCAR3, including two kinds of carbazole-degradative gene clusters (car-I and car-II), and genes for electron transfer components of initial oxygenase for carbazole (fdxI, fdrI, and fdrII). Putative genes were identified for the degradation of anthranilate (and), catechol (cat), 2-hydroxypenta-2,4-dienoate (carDFE), dibenzofuran/fluorene (dbf/fln), protocatechuate (lig), and phthalate (oph). It appears that pCAR3 may carry clustered genes (car-I, car-II, fdxI, fdrI, fdrII, and, and cat) for the degradation of carbazole into tricarboxylic acid cycle intermediates; KA1W completely lost the ability to grow on carbazole, and the carbazole-degradative genes listed above were all expressed when KA1 was grown on carbazole. Reverse transcription-PCR analysis also revealed that the transcription of car-I, car-II, and cat genes was induced by carbazole or its metabolic intermediate. Southern hybridization analyses with probes prepared from car-I, car-II, repA, parA, traI, and traD genes indicated that several Sphingomonas carbazole degraders have DNA regions similar to parts of pCAR3.
The electron-transfer complex between the terminal oxygenase and ferredoxin of carbazole 1,9a-dioxygenase was crystallized and diffraction data were collected to 1.90 Å resolution.
Carbazole 1,9a-dioxygenase, which consists of an oxygenase component (CARDO-O) and the electron-transport components ferredoxin (CARDO-F) and ferredoxin reductase (CARDO-R), catalyzes dihydroxylation at the C1 and C9a positions of carbazole. The electron-transport complex between CARDO-O and CARDO-F crystallizes at 293 K using hanging-drop vapour diffusion with the precipitant PEG MME 2000 (type I crystals) or PEG 3350 (type II). Blossom-shaped crystals form from a pile of triangular plate-shaped crystals. The type I crystal diffracts to a maximum resolution of 1.90 Å and belongs to space group P21, with unit-cell parameters a = 97.1, b = 89.8, c = 104.9 Å, α = γ = 90, β = 103.8°. Diffraction data for the type I crystal gave an overall R
merge of 8.0% and a completeness of 100%. Its V
M value is 2.63 Å3 Da−1, indicating a solvent content of 53.2%.
angular dioxygenases; carbazole; electron-transfer complexes; Rieske non-haem iron oxygenase systems; Rieske-type ferredoxins; Rieske-type proteins
The carbazole degradative car-I gene cluster (carAaIBaIBbICIAcI) of Sphingomonas sp. strain KA1 is located on the 254-kb circular plasmid pCAR3. Carbazole conversion to anthranilate is catalyzed by carbazole 1,9a-dioxygenase (CARDO; CarAaIAcI), meta-cleavage enzyme (CarBaIBbI), and hydrolase (CarCI). CARDO is a three-component dioxygenase, and CarAaI and CarAcI are its terminal oxygenase and ferredoxin components. The car-I gene cluster lacks the gene encoding the ferredoxin reductase component of CARDO. In the present study, based on the draft sequence of pCAR3, we found multiple carbazole degradation genes dispersed in four loci on pCAR3, including a second copy of the car gene cluster (carAaIIBaIIBbIICIIAcII) and the ferredoxin/reductase genes fdxI-fdrI and fdrII. Biotransformation experiments showed that FdrI (or FdrII) could drive the electron transfer chain from NAD(P)H to CarAaI (or CarAaII) with the aid of ferredoxin (CarAcI, CarAcII, or FdxI). Because this electron transfer chain showed phylogenetic relatedness to that consisting of putidaredoxin and putidaredoxin reductase of the P450cam monooxygenase system of Pseudomonas putida, CARDO systems of KA1 can be classified in the class IIA Rieske non-heme iron oxygenase system. Reverse transcription-PCR (RT-PCR) and quantitative RT-PCR analyses revealed that two car gene clusters constituted operons, and their expression was induced when KA1 was exposed to carbazole, although the fdxI-fdrI and fdrII genes were expressed constitutively. Both terminal oxygenases of KA1 showed roughly the same substrate specificity as that from the well-characterized carbazole degrader Pseudomonas resinovorans CA10, although slight differences were observed.
Nocardioides aromaticivorans IC177 is a gram-positive carbazole degrader. The genes encoding carbazole degradation (car genes) were cloned into a cosmid clone and sequenced partially to reveal 19 open reading frames. The car genes were clustered into the carAaCBaBbAcAd and carDFE gene clusters, encoding the enzymes responsible for the degradation of carbazole to anthranilate and 2-hydroxypenta-2,4-dienoate and of 2-hydroxypenta-2,4-dienoate to pyruvic acid and acetyl coenzyme A, respectively. The conserved amino acid motifs proposed to bind the Rieske-type [2Fe-2S] cluster and mononuclear iron, the Rieske-type [2Fe-2S] cluster, and flavin adenine dinucleotide were found in the deduced amino acid sequences of carAa, carAc, and carAd, respectively, which showed similarities with CarAa from Sphingomonas sp. strain KA1 (49% identity), CarAc from Pseudomonas resinovorans CA10 (31% identity), and AhdA4 from Sphingomonas sp. strain P2 (37% identity), respectively. Escherichia coli cells expressing CarAaAcAd exhibited major carbazole 1,9a-dioxygenase (CARDO) activity. These data showed that the IC177 CARDO is classified into class IIB, while gram-negative CARDOs are classified into class III or IIA, indicating that the respective CARDOs have diverse types of electron transfer components and high similarities of the terminal oxygenase. Reverse transcription-PCR (RT-PCR) experiments showed that the carAaCBaBbAcAd and carDFE gene clusters are operonic. The results of quantitative RT-PCR experiments indicated that transcription of both operons is induced by carbazole or its metabolite, whereas anthranilate is not an inducer. Biotransformation analysis showed that the IC177 CARDO exhibits significant activities for naphthalene, carbazole, and dibenzo-p-dioxin but less activity for dibenzofuran and biphenyl.
Isolated from Pseudomonas resinovorans CA10, pCAR1 is a 199-kb plasmid that carries genes involved in the degradation of carbazole and dioxin. The nucleotide sequence of pCAR1 has been determined previously. In this study, we characterized pCAR1 in terms of its replication, maintenance, and conjugation. By constructing miniplasmids of pCAR1 and testing their establishment in Pseudomonas putida DS1, we show that pCAR1 replication is due to the repA gene and its upstream DNA region. The repA gene and putative oriV region could be separated in P. putida DS1, and the oriV region was determined to be located within the 345-bp region between the repA and parW genes. Incompatibility testing using the minireplicon of pCAR1 and IncP plasmids indicated that pCAR1 belongs to the IncP-7 group. Monitoring of the maintenance properties of serial miniplasmids in nonselective medium, and mutation and complementation analyses of the parWABC genes, showed that the stability of pCAR1 is attributable to the products of the parWAB genes. In mating assays, the transfer of pCAR1 from CA10 was detected in a CA10 derivative that was cured of pCAR1 (CA10dm4) and in P. putida KT2440 at frequencies of 3 × 10−1 and 3 × 10−3 per donor strain, respectively. This is the first report of the characterization of this completely sequenced IncP-7 plasmid.
The carbazole-degradative plasmid pCAR1 of Pseudomonas resinovorans strain CA10 has two gene clusters, carAaAaBaBbCAcAdDFE and antABC, which are involved in the conversions of carbazole to anthranilate and anthranilate to catechol, respectively. We proved that the antABC gene cluster, encoding two-component anthranilate 1,2-dioxygenase, constitutes a single transcriptional unit through Northern hybridization and reverse transcription-PCR (RT-PCR) analyses. The transcription start point of antA was mapped at 53 bp upstream point of its translation start point, and the −10 and −35 boxes were homologous to conserved σ70 recognition sequence. Hence the promoter of the ant operon was designated Pant. 5′ Deletion analyses using luciferase as a reporter showed that the region up to at least 70 bp from the transcription start point of antA was necessary for the activation of Pant. Luciferase expression from Pant was induced by anthranilate itself, but not by catechol. Two probable AraC/XylS-type regulatory genes found on pCAR1, open reading frame 22 (ORF22) and ORF23, are tandemly located 3.2 kb upstream of the antA gene. We revealed that the product of ORF23, designated AntR, is indispensable for the stimulation of Pant in Pseudomonas putida cells. Northern hybridization and RT-PCR analyses revealed that another copy of Pant, which is thought to be translocated about 2.1 kb upstream of the carAa gene as a consequence of the transposition of ISPre1, actually drives transcription of the carAa gene in the presence of anthranilate, indicating that both ant and car operons are simultaneously regulated by AntR.
Genes involved in the degradation of fluorene to phthalate were characterized in the fluorene degrader Terrabacter sp. strain DBF63. The initial attack on both fluorene and 9-fluorenone was catalyzed by DbfA to yield 9-fluorenol and 1,1a-dihydroxy-1-hydro-9-fluorenone, respectively. The FlnB protein exhibited activities against both 9-fluorenol and 1,1a-dihydroxy-1-hydro-9-fluorenone to produce 9-fluorenone and 2′-carboxy-2,3-dihydroxybiphenyl, respectively. FlnD is a heteromeric protein encoded by flnD1 and ORF16, being a member of the class III two-subunit extradiol dioxygenase. FlnE was identified as a serine hydrolase for the meta-cleavage products that yield phthalate.
The carbazole 1,9a-dioxygenase (CARDO) system of Pseudomonas resinovorans strain CA10 consists of terminal oxygenase (CarAa), ferredoxin (CarAc), and ferredoxin reductase (CarAd). Each component of CARDO was expressed in Escherichia coli strain BL21(DE3) as a native form (CarAa) or a His-tagged form (CarAc and CarAd) and was purified to apparent homogeneity. CarAa was found to be trimeric and to have one Rieske type [2Fe-2S] cluster and one mononuclear iron center in each monomer. Both His-tagged proteins were found to be monomeric and to contain the prosthetic groups predicted from the deduced amino acid sequence (His-tagged CarAd, one FAD and one [2Fe-2S] cluster per monomer protein; His-tagged CarAc, one Rieske type [2Fe-2S] cluster per monomer protein). Both NADH and NADPH were effective as electron donors for His-tagged CarAd. However, since the kcat/Km for NADH is 22.3-fold higher than that for NADPH in the 2,6-dichlorophenolindophenol reductase assay, NADH was supposed to be the physiological electron donor of CarAd. In the presence of NADH, His-tagged CarAc was reduced by His-tagged CarAd. Similarly, CarAa was reduced by His-tagged CarAc, His-tagged CarAd, and NADH. The three purified proteins could reconstitute the CARDO activity in vitro. In the reconstituted CARDO system, His-tagged CarAc seemed to be indispensable for electron transport, while His-tagged CarAd could be replaced by some unrelated reductases.
Our previous studies revealed that lysine is synthesized through α-aminoadipate in an extremely thermophilic bacterium, Thermus thermophilus HB27. Sequence analysis of a gene cluster involved in the lysine biosynthesis of this microorganism suggested that the conversion from α-aminoadipate to lysine proceeds in a way similar to that of arginine biosynthesis. In the present study, we cloned an argD homolog of T. thermophilus HB27 which was not included in the previously cloned lysine biosynthetic gene cluster and determined the nucleotide sequence. A knockout of the argD-like gene, now termed lysJ, in T. thermophilus HB27 showed that this gene is essential for lysine biosynthesis in this bacterium. The lysJ gene was cloned into a plasmid and overexpressed in Escherichia coli, and the LysJ protein was purified to homogeneity. When the catalytic activity of LysJ was analyzed in a reverse reaction in the putative pathway, LysJ was found to transfer the ɛ-amino group of N2-acetyllysine, a putative intermediate in lysine biosynthesis, to 2-oxoglutarate. When N2-acetylornithine, a substrate for arginine biosynthesis, was used as the substrate for the reaction, LysJ transferred the δ-amino group of N2-acetylornithine to 2-oxoglutarate 16 times more efficiently than when N2-acetyllysine was the amino donor. All these results suggest that lysine biosynthesis in T. thermophilus HB27 is functionally and evolutionarily related to arginine biosynthesis.