1887

Abstract

The complex (Bcc) emerged as problematic opportunistic pathogens to cystic fibrosis (CF) patients. Although several virulence factors have been identified in Bcc, the knowledge of their relative contribution to Bcc pathogenicity remains scarce. In this work, we describe the identification and characterization of a IST408 mutant containing a disruption in the gene. In other bacteria, Hfq is a global regulator of metabolism, acting as an RNA chaperone involved in the riboregulation of target mRNAs by small regulatory non-coding RNAs (sRNAs). The Hfq protein was overproduced as a histidine-tagged derivative, and we show evidence that the protein forms hexamers and binds sRNAs. When provided , the IST408 gene complemented the mutant strain GS081. Our results also show that the mutant is more susceptible to stress conditions mimicking those faced by Bcc bacteria when infecting the CF host. In addition, the mutant and two mutants derived from and clinical isolates also exhibited a reduced ability to colonize and kill the nematode , used as an infection model. These data, together with the conservation of Hfq orthologues among Bcc, strongly suggest that Hfq plays a major role in the survival of Bcc under stress conditions, contributing to the success of Bcc as CF pathogens.

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2010-03-01
2019-10-15
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