Plasmid-encoded genes influence exosporium assembly and morphology in Bacillus megaterium QM B1551 spores
FEMS Microbiology Letters
Oxford University Press
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Manetsberger, J., Hall, L., & Christie, G. (2015). Plasmid-encoded genes influence exosporium assembly and morphology in Bacillus megaterium QM B1551 spores. FEMS Microbiology Letters, 362 (fnv147)https://doi.org/10.1093/femsle/fnv147
Spores of Bacillus megaterium QM B1551 are encased in a morphologically distinctive exosporium. We demonstrate here that genes encoded on the indigenous pBM500 and pBM600 plasmids are required for exosporium assembly and or stability in spores of this strain. Bioinformatic analyses identified genes encoding orthologues of the B. cereus-family exosporium nap and basal layer proteins within the B. megaterium genome. Transcriptional analyses, supported by electron and fluorescent microscopy, indicate that the pole-localised nap, identified here for the first time in B. megaterium QM B1551 spores, is comprised of the BclA1 protein. The role of the BxpB protein, which forms the basal layer of the exosporium in B. cereus spores, is less clear since spores of a null mutant strain display an apparently normal morphology. Retention of the localised nap in bxpB null spores suggests that B. megaterium employs an alternative mechanism to that used by B. cereus spores in anchoring the nap to the spore surface.
bacillus, spores, exosporium, indigenous plasmids, hairy nap
Julia Manetsberger was the recipient of an EPSRC Doctoral Training grant. The assistance of Dr. Jeremy Skepper (University of Cambridge), Caitlin Brumby and Professor Per Bullough (both University of Sheffield) with electron microscopy work is gratefully acknowledged. The authors have no conflicts of interest to declare.
External DOI: https://doi.org/10.1093/femsle/fnv147
This record's URL: https://www.repository.cam.ac.uk/handle/1810/250483
Attribution 2.0 UK: England & Wales
Licence URL: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/uk/