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Open AccessArticle

The Metallochaperone Encoding Gene hypA Is Widely Distributed among Pathogenic Aeromonas spp. and Its Expression Is Increased under Acidic pH and within Macrophages

Unit of Microbiology, Department of Basic Health Sciences, Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, IISPV, University Rovira i Virgili, 43201 Reus, Spain
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Microorganisms 2019, 7(10), 415; https://doi.org/10.3390/microorganisms7100415
Received: 30 July 2019 / Revised: 27 September 2019 / Accepted: 28 September 2019 / Published: 2 October 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue An Update on Aeromonas)
Metallochaperones are essential proteins that insert metal ions or metal cofactors into specific enzymes, that after maturation will become metalloenzymes. One of the most studied metallochaperones is the nickel-binding protein HypA, involved in the maturation of nickel-dependent hydrogenases and ureases. HypA was previously described in the human pathogens Escherichia coli and Helicobacter pylori and was considered a key virulence factor in the latter. However, nothing is known about this metallochaperone in the species of the emerging pathogen genus Aeromonas. These bacteria are native inhabitants of aquatic environments, often associated with cases of diarrhea and wound infections. In this study, we performed an in silico study of the hypA gene on 36 Aeromonas species genomes, which showed the presence of the gene in 69.4% (25/36) of the Aeromonas genomes. The similarity of Aeromonas HypA proteins with the H. pylori orthologous protein ranged from 21−23%, while with that of E. coli it was 41−45%. However, despite this low percentage, Aeromonas HypA displays the conserved characteristic metal-binding domains found in the other pathogens. The transcriptional analysis enabled the determination of hypA expression levels under acidic and alkaline conditions and after macrophage phagocytosis. The transcriptional regulation of hypA was found to be pH-dependent, showing upregulation at acidic pH. A higher upregulation occurred after macrophage infection. This is the first study that provided evidence that the HypA metallochaperone in Aeromonas might play a role in acid tolerance and in the defense against macrophages. View Full-Text
Keywords: metallochaperone; Aeromonas; macrophages; acid; alkaline; ROS; hydrogenases; ureases metallochaperone; Aeromonas; macrophages; acid; alkaline; ROS; hydrogenases; ureases
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MDPI and ACS Style

Fernández-Bravo, A.; López-Fernández, L.; Figueras, M.J. The Metallochaperone Encoding Gene hypA Is Widely Distributed among Pathogenic Aeromonas spp. and Its Expression Is Increased under Acidic pH and within Macrophages. Microorganisms 2019, 7, 415. https://doi.org/10.3390/microorganisms7100415

AMA Style

Fernández-Bravo A, López-Fernández L, Figueras MJ. The Metallochaperone Encoding Gene hypA Is Widely Distributed among Pathogenic Aeromonas spp. and Its Expression Is Increased under Acidic pH and within Macrophages. Microorganisms. 2019; 7(10):415. https://doi.org/10.3390/microorganisms7100415

Chicago/Turabian Style

Fernández-Bravo, Ana; López-Fernández, Loida; Figueras, Maria J. 2019. "The Metallochaperone Encoding Gene hypA Is Widely Distributed among Pathogenic Aeromonas spp. and Its Expression Is Increased under Acidic pH and within Macrophages" Microorganisms 7, no. 10: 415. https://doi.org/10.3390/microorganisms7100415

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