Involvement of multiple transcription factors for metal-induced spy gene expression in Escherichia coli
Bacteria are directly exposed to metals in environment. To maintain the intracellular metal homeostasis, Escherichia coli contain a number of gene regulation systems, each for response to a specific metal. A periplasmic protein Spy of E. coli was found to be induced upon short-exposure to copper ion in CpxAR-dependent manner. Transcription of the spy gene was also induced by long-exposure to zinc ion. This induction, however, depended on another two-component system BaeSR. Using DNase-I footprinting assay, we identified two BaeR-binding regions on the spy promoter with a direct repeat of the BaeR-box sequence, TCTNCANAA. The zinc-responsive BaeR-binding sites were separated from copper-responsive CpxR-binding site, implying that the spy promoter responds to two species of metal independently through different using sensor-response regulator systems. Since BaeSR-dependent zinc response requires longer time, the induction of spy gene transcription by external zinc may include multiple steps such as through sensing the zinc-induced envelope disorder by BaeSR.
Journal: Journal of Biotechnology - Volume 133, Issue 2, 20 January 2008, Pages 196–200