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Role of pfkA and general carbohydrate catabolism in seed colonization by Enterobacter cloacae
- Enterobacter cloacae A-11 is a transposon mutant of strain 501R3 that was deficient in cucumber spermosphere colonization and in the utilization of certain carbohydrates (D. P. Roberts, C. J. Sheets, and J. S. Hartung, Can. J. Microbiol. 38:1128-1134, 1992). In vitro growth of strain A-11 was reduced or deficient on most carbohydrates that supported growth of strain 501R3 but was unaffected on fructose, glycerol, and all amino acids and organic acids tested. Colonization by strain A-11 was significantly reduced (P less than or equal to 0.05) for cucumber and radish seeds compared to that of strain 501R3, but colonization of pea, soybean, sunflower, and sweet corn seeds was not reduced. Pea seeds released several orders of magnitude more total carbohydrates and amino acids than cucumber and radish seeds and approximately 4,000-fold more fructose. Fructose was the only carbohydrate detected in the seed exudates which supported wild-type levels of in vitro growth of strain A-11. Soybean, sunflower, and sweet corn seeds also released significantly greater amounts of fructose and total carbohydrates and amino acids than cucumber or radish seeds. The exogenous addition of fructose to cucumber and radish seeds at quantities similar to the total quantity of carbohydrates released from pea seeds over 96 h increased the populations of strain A-11 to levels comparable to those of strain 501R3 in sterile sand. Molecular characterization of strain A-11 indicated that the mini-Tn5 kanamycin transposon was inserted in a region of the genome with significant homology to pfkA, which encodes phosphofructo kinase. A comparison of strain A-11 with Escherichia coli DF456, a known pfkA mutant, indicated that the nutritional loss phenotypes were identical. Furthermore, the pfkA homolog cloned from E. cloacae 501R3 complemented the nutritional loss phenotypes of both E. coli DF456 and E. cloacae A-11 and restored colonization by strain A-11 to near wild-type levels. These genetic and biochemical restoration experiments provide strong evidence that the quantities of reduced carbon sources found in seed exudates and the ability of microbes to use these compounds play important roles in the colonization of the spermosphere.
Roberts, D.P. , Dery, P.D. , Yucel, I. , Buyer, J. , Holtman, M.A. , Kobayashi, D.Y.
structural genes , nucleotide sequences , carbohydrate metabolism , Cucumis sativus , Raphanus sativus
- Includes references
- Applied and environmental microbiology June 1999. v. 65 (6)
Journal Articles, USDA Authors, Peer-Reviewed
- Works produced by employees of the U.S. Government as part of their official duties are not copyrighted within the U.S. The content of this document is not copyrighted.