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Microbiology. 2006 Sep;152(Pt 9):2717-25.

Identification of a diacylglycerol acyltransferase gene involved in accumulation of triacylglycerol in Mycobacterium tuberculosis under stress.

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Biomolecular Science Center, and Department of Molecular Biology and Microbiology, Burnett College of Biomedical Sciences, University of Central Florida, Orlando, 32816-2364, USA.


Mycobacterium tuberculosis under stress stores triacylglycerol (TG). There are 15 genes in M. tuberculosis that belong to a novel family of TG synthase genes (tgs), but it is not known which of them is responsible for this accumulation of TG. In this paper, it is reported that M. tuberculosis H37Rv accumulated TG under acidic, static or hypoxic growth conditions, or upon treatment with NO, whereas TG accumulation was drastically reduced in the tgs1 (Rv3130c) disrupted mutant. Complementation with tgs1 restored this TG accumulation. C(26) was a major fatty acid in this TG, indicating that the TGS1 gene product uses C(26) fatty acid, which is known to be produced by the mycobacterial fatty acid synthase. TGS1 expressed in Escherichia coli preferred C(26 : 0)-CoA for TG synthesis. If TG storage is needed for the long-term survival of M. tuberculosis under dormant conditions, the tgs1 product could be a suitable target for antilatency drugs.

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