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Gene. 2007 Feb 15;388(1-2):83-92. Epub 2006 Oct 17.

TdeA, a TolC-like protein required for toxin and drug export in Aggregatibacter (Actinobacillus) actinomycetemcomitans.

Author information

1
Department of Oral Biology, New Jersey Dental School, University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey, Newark, NJ 07103, United States.

Abstract

Aggregatibacter actinomycetemcomitans is an oral bacterium that causes localized aggressive periodontitis (LAP) and extra-oral infections such as sub-acute infective endocarditis. As part of its array of virulence factors, A. actinomycetemcomitans produces leukotoxin (LtxA), a member of the RTX family of toxins. LtxA kills human leukocytes and we have recently shown that the toxin is required for beta-hemolysis by A. actinomycetemcomitans on solid medium. In other RTX toxin-producing bacteria, an outer membrane channel-forming protein, TolC, is required for toxin secretion and drug export. We have identified an ORF in A. actinomycetemcomitans that encodes a putative protein having predicted structural properties similar to TolC. Inactivation of this ORF resulted in a mutant that was no longer beta-hemolytic and did not secrete LtxA. This mutant was significantly more sensitive to antimicrobial agents compared to the wild type strain and was unable to export the antimicrobial agent berberine. Thus, this ORF was named tdeA for "toxin and drug export". Examination of the DNA sequence surrounding tdeA revealed two upstream ORFs that encode proteins similar to the drug efflux proteins, MacA and MacB. Inactivation of macB in A. actinomycetemcomitans did not alter the drug sensitivity profile or the hemolytic activity of the mutant. The genes macA, macB and tdeA are organized as an operon and are constitutively expressed as a single transcript. These results show that A. actinomycetemcomitans indeed requires a TolC-like protein for LtxA secretion and that this protein, TdeA, also functions as part of a drug efflux system.

PMID:
17116373
PMCID:
PMC1831674
DOI:
10.1016/j.gene.2006.10.004
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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