1887

Abstract

The gene is located at the end of a large flagellar locus in at least 10 peritrichously flagellated Gram-negative bacterial genera, but it shares no significant similarity with other genes. This study shows that is transcribed as part of an flagellar operon, under the control of the flagellar master regulator FlhDC. Deletion of the chromosomal gene did not affect swimming motility, but it abolished swarming motility across solid agar. Swarming was restored to the Δ mutant by the 130 aa putative envelope protein FlhE, but not by a truncated version lacking the N-terminal signal peptidase I recognition sequence. The Δ mutant was indistinguishable from the wild-type parent in number and distribution of flagella, secretion of flagellin subunits, and flagellar gene expression, and there were no obvious differences in cell-surface LPS and extracellular polysaccharide. The Δ mutant was able to swarm when non-ionic surfactant was included in agar medium, and it showed differences to the wild-type in binding calcofluor and Congo red dyes, and in biofilm production. The data show that the gene is part of the flagella regulon but that it has no role in flagella biogenesis. It appears, nevertheless, to act at the cell envelope to influence flagella-dependent swarming.

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2007-02-01
2020-11-29
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