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Microbiology. 2009 Mar;155(Pt 3):932-43. doi: 10.1099/mic.0.022475-0.

CpgA, EF-Tu and the stressosome protein YezB are substrates of the Ser/Thr kinase/phosphatase couple, PrkC/PrpC, in Bacillus subtilis.

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Université Paris-Sud 11, CNRS UMR 8621, Institut de Génétique et Microbiologie, 91405 Orsay, France.


The conserved prpC, prkC, cpgA locus in Bacillus subtilis encodes respectively a Ser/Thr phosphatase, the cognate sensor kinase (containing an external PASTA domain suggested to bind peptidoglycan precursors) and CpgA, a small ribosome-associated GTPase that we have shown previously is implicated in shape determination and peptidoglycan deposition. In this study, in a search for targets of PrkC and PrpC, we showed that, in vitro, CpgA itself is phosphorylated on serine and threonine, and another GTPase, the translation factor EF-Tu, is also phosphorylated by the kinase on the conserved T384 residue. Both substrates are dephosphorylated by PrpC in vitro. In addition, we identified YezB, a 10.3 kDa polypeptide, and a component of the stressosome, as a substrate for both enzymes in vitro and apparently in vivo. We propose that the PrpC/PrkC/CpgA system constitutes an important element of a regulatory network involved in the coordination of cell wall expansion and growth in B. subtilis.

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