The 58-kilodalton major virulence factor of Francisella tularensis is required for efficient utilization of iron

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DOIResolve DOI: http://doi.org/10.1128/IAI.00702-09
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TypeArticle
Journal titleInfection and Immunity
Volume77
Issue10
Pages44294436; # of pages: 8
AbstractWe investigated the role of the 58-kDa FTT0918 protein in the iron metabolism of Francisella tularensis. The phenotypes of SCHU S4, a prototypic strain of F. tularensis subsp. tularensis, and the ΔFTT0918 and ΔfslA isogenic mutants were analyzed. The gene product missing in the ΔfslA mutant is responsible for synthesis of a siderophore. When grown in broth with various iron concentrations, the two deletion mutants generally reached lower maximal densities than SCHU S4. The ΔFTT0918 mutant, but not the ΔfslA mutant, upregulated the genes of the F. tularensis siderophore locus (fsl) operon even at high iron concentrations. A chrome azurol sulfonate plate assay confirmed siderophore production by all strains except the ΔfslA strain. In a cross-feeding experiment using medium devoid of free iron, SCHU S4 promoted growth of the ΔfslA strain but not of the ΔFTT0918 strain. The sensitivity of SCHU S4 and the ΔFTT0918 and ΔfslA strains to streptonigrin demonstrated that the ΔFTT0918 strain contained a smaller free intracellular iron pool and that the ΔfslA strain contained a larger one than SCHU S4. In contrast to the marked attenuation of the ΔFTT0918 strain, the ΔfslA strain was as virulent as SCHU S4 in a mouse model. Altogether, the data demonstrate that the FTT0918 protein is required for F. tularensis to utilize iron bound to siderophores and that it likely has a role also in siderophore-independent iron acquisition. We suggest that the FTT0918 protein be designated Fe utilization protein A, FupA.
Publication date
LanguageEnglish
AffiliationNational Research Council Canada (NRC-CNRC); NRC Institute for Biological Sciences
Peer reviewedYes
NPARC number15336297
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Record identifier50509425-26a6-4540-9b44-a993603898de
Record created2010-05-21
Record modified2016-05-09
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