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Arch Microbiol. 2009 Aug;191(8):649-57. doi: 10.1007/s00203-009-0494-7. Epub 2009 Jun 19.

Characterization of Bacillus subtilis YfkE (ChaA): a calcium-specific Ca2+/H+ antiporter of the CaCA family.

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  • 1Bio-Nano Electronics Research Center, Toyo University, 2100, Kujirai, Kawagoe, Saitama, 350-8585, Japan.

Abstract

YfkE, a protein from Bacillus subtilis, exhibits homology to the Ca(2+):Cation Antiporter (CaCA) Family. In a fluorescence-based assay of everted membrane vesicles prepared from Na(+)(Ca(2+))/H(+) antiporter-defective mutant Escherichia coli KNabc, YfkE exhibited robust Ca(2+)/H(+) antiport activity, with a K (m) for Ca(2+) estimated at 12.5 muM at pH 8.5 and 113 muM at pH 7.5. Neither Na(+) nor K(+) served as a substrate. Mg(2+) also did not serve as a substrate, but inhibited the Ca(2+)/H(+) antiporter activity. The Ca(2+) transport capability of YfkE was also observed directly by transport assays in everted membrane vesicles using radiolabeled (45)Ca(2+). Transcriptional analysis from the putative yfkED operon using beta-garactosidase activity as a reporter revealed that both of the yfkE and yfkD genes are regulated by forespore-specific sigma factor, SigG, and the general stress response regulator, SigB. These results suggest that YfkE may be needed for Ca(2+) signaling in the sporulation or germination process in B. subtilis. ChaA is proposed as the designation for YfkE of B. subtilis.

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