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A CtrA homolog affects swarming motility and encystment in Rhodospirillum centenum

A CtrA homolog affects swarming motility and encystment in Rhodospirillum centenum,10.1007/s00203-011-0676-y,Archives of Microbiology,Terry H. Bird,Al

A CtrA homolog affects swarming motility and encystment in Rhodospirillum centenum  
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The α-proteobacterium, Rhodospirillum centenum, has a complex life cycle that allows adaptation to different environments. Transitions between vegetative swim cell and swarmer cell types depend on whether the organism is growing in liquid surroundings or on a solid substrate. Moreover, starvation can induce vegetative cells to differentiate into quiescent cysts. This paper describes the results of our investigation into the role of a putative DNA-binding response regulator that is homologous to CtrA, the cell cycle regulator from Caulobacter crescentus. Deletion of ctrA from the R. centenum genome resulted in a viable strain with impaired swarming motility coupled with an increased tendency to form cysts. Conversely, overexpression of wild type CtrA or a phosphomimetic allele, CtrAD51E, suppressed cyst cell formation, whereas overexpression of a CtrAD51A allele failed to suppress encystment but did prevent swarming motility. Thus, we propose that CtrA participates within a two-component signal transduction pathway that promotes swarming motility while contributing to the suppression of cyst cell formation.
Journal: Archives of Microbiology - ARCH MICROBIOL , vol. 193, no. 6, pp. 451-459, 2011
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