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FEMS Microbiol Lett. 2005 Feb 15;243(2):489-96.

Global gene expression profile of Yersinia pestis induced by streptomycin.

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Laboratory of Analytical Microbiology, National Center for Biomedical Analysis, Army Center for Microbial Detection and Research, Institute of Microbiology and Epidemiology, Academy of Military Medical Sciences (AMMS), Beijing 100071, China.


Plague, caused by Yersinia pestis, is one of the most dangerous diseases that impressed a horror onto human consciousness that persists to this day. Cases of plague can be normally controlled by timely antibiotic administration. Streptomycin is the first-line antibiotic for plague treatment. In this study, a DNA microarray was used to investigate the changes in the gene expression profile of Y. pestis upon exposure to streptomycin. A total of 345 genes were identified to be differentially regulated, 144 of which were up-regulated, and 201 down-regulated. Streptomycin-induced transcriptional changes occurred in genes responsible for heat shock response, drug/analogue sensitivity, biosynthesis of the branched-chain amino acids, chemotaxis and mobility and broad regulatory functions. A wide set of genes involved in energy metabolism, biosynthesis of small macromolecules, synthesis and modification of macromolecules and degradation of small and macro molecules were among those down-regulated. The results reveal general changes in gene expression that are consistent with known mechanisms of action of streptomycin and many new genes that are likely to play important roles in the response to streptomycin treatment, providing useful candidates for investigating the specific mechanisms of streptomycin action.

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