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Genes 2018, 9(7), 347; https://doi.org/10.3390/genes9070347

Possible Role of Envelope Components in the Extreme Copper Resistance of the Biomining Acidithiobacillus ferrooxidans

1
Laboratory of Molecular Microbiology and Biotechnology, Department of Biology, Faculty of Sciences, University of Chile, Santiago 7800003, Chile
2
Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Faculty of Chemical and Pharmaceutical Sciences, University of Chile, Santiago 7800003, Chile
3
Proteomics Laboratory, National Biotechnology Center, CSIC, 28049 Madrid, Spain
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 30 May 2018 / Revised: 30 June 2018 / Accepted: 3 July 2018 / Published: 10 July 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Genomics of Bacterial Metal Resistance)
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Abstract

Acidithiobacillus ferrooxidans resists extremely high concentrations of copper. Strain ATCC 53993 is much more resistant to the metal compared with strain ATCC 23270, possibly due to the presence of a genomic island in the former one. The global response of strain ATCC 53993 to copper was analyzed using iTRAQ (isobaric tag for relative and absolute quantitation) quantitative proteomics. Sixty-seven proteins changed their levels of synthesis in the presence of the metal. On addition of CusCBA efflux system proteins, increased levels of other envelope proteins, such as a putative periplasmic glucan biosynthesis protein (MdoG) involved in the osmoregulated synthesis of glucans and a putative antigen O polymerase (Wzy), were seen in the presence of copper. The expression of A. ferrooxidansmdoG or wzy genes in a copper sensitive Escherichia coli conferred it a higher metal resistance, suggesting the possible role of these components in copper resistance of A. ferrooxidans. Transcriptional levels of genes wzy, rfaE and wzz also increased in strain ATCC 23270 grown in the presence of copper, but not in strain ATCC 53993. Additionally, in the absence of this metal, lipopolysaccharide (LPS) amounts were 3-fold higher in A. ferrooxidans ATCC 53993 compared with strain 23270. Nevertheless, both strains grown in the presence of copper contained similar LPS quantities, suggesting that strain 23270 synthesizes higher amounts of LPS to resist the metal. On the other hand, several porins diminished their levels in the presence of copper. The data presented here point to an essential role for several envelope components in the extreme copper resistance by this industrially important acidophilic bacterium. View Full-Text
Keywords: Acidithiobacillus ferrooxidans; copper resistance; biomining; envelope components; proteomics; lipopolysaccharide Acidithiobacillus ferrooxidans; copper resistance; biomining; envelope components; proteomics; lipopolysaccharide
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Oetiker, N.; Norambuena, R.; Martínez-Bussenius, C.; Navarro, C.A.; Amaya, F.; Álvarez, S.A.; Paradela, A.; Jerez, C.A. Possible Role of Envelope Components in the Extreme Copper Resistance of the Biomining Acidithiobacillus ferrooxidans. Genes 2018, 9, 347.

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