Mutation of the principal σ factor causes loss of virulence in a strain of the Mycobacterium tuberculosis complex

Desmond M. Collins, R. Pamela Kawakami, Geoffrey W. De Lisle, Lisa Pascopella, Barry R. Bloom, William R. Jacobs

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

100 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Tuberculosis continues to be responsible for the deaths of millions of people, yet the virulence factors of the causative pathogens remain unknown. Genetic complementation experiments with strains of the Mycobacterium tuberculosis complex have identified a gene from a virulent strain that restores virulence to an attenuated strain. The gene, designated rpoV, has a high degree of homology with principal transcription or σ factors from other bacteria, particularly Mycobacterium smegmatis and Streptomyces griseus. The homologous rpoV gene of the attenuated strain has a point mutation causing an arginine → histidine change in a domain known to interact with promoters. To our knowledge, association of loss of bacterial virulence with a mutation in the principal σ factor has not been previously reported. The results indicate either that tuberculosis organisms have an alternative principal σ factor that promotes virulence genes or, more probably, that this particular mutant principal σ factor is unable to promote expression of one or more genes required for virulence. Study of genes and proteins differentially regulated by the mutant transcription factor should facilitate identification of further virulence factors.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)8036-8040
Number of pages5
JournalProceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
Volume92
Issue number17
DOIs
StatePublished - Aug 15 1995

Fingerprint

Mycobacterium tuberculosis
Virulence
Virulence Factors
Mutation
Genes
Tuberculosis
Transcription Factors
Streptomyces griseus
Mycobacterium smegmatis
Point Mutation
Histidine
Arginine
Bacteria
Proteins

Keywords

  • σ
  • Mycobacterium bovis
  • RNA polymerase
  • transcription factor

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General

Cite this

Mutation of the principal σ factor causes loss of virulence in a strain of the Mycobacterium tuberculosis complex. / Collins, Desmond M.; Kawakami, R. Pamela; De Lisle, Geoffrey W.; Pascopella, Lisa; Bloom, Barry R.; Jacobs, William R.

In: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, Vol. 92, No. 17, 15.08.1995, p. 8036-8040.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Collins, Desmond M. ; Kawakami, R. Pamela ; De Lisle, Geoffrey W. ; Pascopella, Lisa ; Bloom, Barry R. ; Jacobs, William R. / Mutation of the principal σ factor causes loss of virulence in a strain of the Mycobacterium tuberculosis complex. In: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America. 1995 ; Vol. 92, No. 17. pp. 8036-8040.
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