Send to

Choose Destination
J Biol Chem. 2010 Dec 10;285(50):38876-88. doi: 10.1074/jbc.M110.179150. Epub 2010 Oct 11.

Temperature and Mg2+ sensing by a novel PhoP-PhoQ two-component system for regulation of virulence in Edwardsiella tarda.

Author information

Department of Biological Sciences, Faculty of Science, National University of Singapore, Singapore 117543.


The PhoP-PhoQ two-component system is commonly used by bacteria to sense environmental factors. Here we show that the PhoP-PhoQ system of Edwardsiella tarda detects changes in environmental temperature and Mg(2+) concentration as well as regulates the type III and VI secretion systems through direct activation of esrB. Protein secretion is activated from 23 to 35 °C or at low Mg(2+) concentrations, but it is suppressed at or below 20 °C, at or above 37 °C, or at high Mg(2+) concentrations. The effects of temperature and Mg(2+) concentration are additive. The PhoQ sensor domain has a low T(m) of 37.9 °C, and it detects temperatures through a conformational change of its secondary structure. Mutation of specific Pro or Thr residues increased the stability of the PhoQ sensor drastically, altering its temperature-sensing ability. The PhoQ sensor detects Mg(2+) concentration through the direct binding of Mg(2+) to a cluster of acidic residues (DDDSAD) and through changes that likely affect its tertiary structure. Here, we describe for the first time the use of PhoP-PhoQ as a temperature sensor for bacterial virulence control.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for HighWire Icon for PubMed Central
Loading ...
Support Center