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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Isolation and characterization of Bacillus subtilis genes involved in siderophore biosynthesis: relationship between B. subtilis sfpo and Escherichia coli entD genes.

In response to iron deprivation, Bacillus subtilis secretes a catecholic siderophore, 2,3-dihydroxybenzoyl glycine, which is similar to the precursor of the Escherichia coli siderophore enterobactin. We isolated two sets of B. subtilis DNA sequences that complemented the mutations of several E. coli siderophore-deficient (ent) mutants with defective enterobactin biosynthesis enzymes. One set contained DNA sequences that complemented only an entD mutation. The second set contained DNA sequences that complemented various combinations of entB, entE, entC, and entA mutations. The two sets of DNA sequences did not appear to overlap. AB. subtilis mutant containing an insertion in the region of the entD homolog grew much more poorly in low-iron medium and with markedly different kinetics. These data indicate that (i) at least five of the siderophore biosynthesis genes of B. subtilis can function in E. coli, (ii) the genetic organization of these siderophore genes in B. subtilis is similar to that in E. coli, and (iii) the B. subtilis entD homolog is required for efficient growth in low-iron medium. The nucleotide sequence of the B. subtilis DNA contained in plasmid pENTA22, a clone expressing the B. subtilis entD homolog, revealed the presence of at least two genes. One gene was identified as sfpo, a previously reported gene involved in the production of surfactin in B. subtilis and which is highly homologous to the E. coli entD gene. We present evidence that the E. coli entD and B. subtilis sfpo genes are interchangeable and that their products are members of a new family of proteins which function in the secretion of peptide molecules.[1]


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