1887

Abstract

The concomitant presence of a complete quorum-sensing system and operons in is known to be essential for the detection of gelatinase activity. However, there are reports of the absence of gelatinase activity despite the presence of complete and loci. In order to understand this incongruence between genotype and phenotype we sequenced and loci of the LN68 strain, which was previously found to carry both operons but to lack gelatinase activity. Of the 59 nucleotide differences detected compared with the gelatinase-positive V583 strain, we found a nonsense mutation (a premature STOP codon) predicted to truncate the ATPase sensor domain of the FsrC protein, responsible for sensing and transducing the signal from the quorum-sensing molecule. Strain LN68 was highly affected in the expression of the and genes, further supporting the lack of Fsr-dependent induction. When we constructed a V583 mutant with the same premature stop mutation in the gene the resulting strain was no longer able to degrade gelatin. We conclude that the reduced ability to transduce the quorum-sensing signal of the prematurely truncated FsrC protein is sufficient to explain the negative gelatinase phenotype. As the incongruent genotype and phenotype is detected in natural isolates, we believe that the silencing of the quorum-sensing system Fsr may be beneficial for some strains.

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2012-02-01
2019-10-14
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