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Mol Microbiol. 2003 Feb;47(4):993-1006.

Identification of a novel Gsp-related pathway required for secretion of the manganese-oxidizing factor of Pseudomonas putida strain GB-1.

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Leiden Institute of Chemistry, Gorlaeus Laboratories, Leiden University, 2300 RA Leiden, The Netherlands.


The manganese-oxidizing factor of Pseudomonas putida strain GB-1 is associated with the outer membrane. One of the systems of protein transport across the outer membrane is the general secretory pathway (Gsp). The gsp genes are called xcp in Pseudomonas species. In a previous study, it was shown that mutation of the prepilin peptidase XcpA and of a homologue of the pseudopilin XcpT inhibited transport of the factor. In the present study, we describe the genomic region flanking the xcpT homologue (designated xcmT1). We show that xcmT1 is part of a two-gene operon that includes an xcpS homologue (designated xcmS). No other xcp-like genes are present in the regions flanking the xcmT1/xcmS cluster. We also characterized the site of transposon insertion of another transport mutant of P. putida GB-1. This insertion appeared to be located in a gene (designated xcmX) possibly encoding another pseudopilin-related protein. This xcmX is clustered with two other xcpT-related genes (designated xcmT2 and xcmT3) on one side and homologues of three csg genes (designated csmE, csmF and csmG) on the other side. The csg genes are involved in production of aggregative fibres in Escherichia coli and Salmonella typhimurium. A search for XcmX homologues revealed that the recently published genome of Ralstonia solanacearum and the unannotated genome of P. putida KT2440 contain comparable gene clusters with xcmX and xcp homologues that are different from the well-described 'regular'xcp/gsp clusters. They do contain xcpR and xcpQ homologues but, for example, homologues of xcpP, Y and Z are lacking. The results suggest a novel Xcp-related system for the transport of manganese-oxidizing enzymes to the cell surface.

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