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J Vis Exp. 2014 Mar 10;(85). doi: 10.3791/51346.

Identification of novel genes associated with alginate production in Pseudomonas aeruginosa using mini-himar1 mariner transposon-mediated mutagenesis.

Author information

1
Department of Biochemistry and Microbiology, Joan C. Edwards School of Medicine, Marshall University.
2
Department of Biochemistry and Microbiology, Joan C. Edwards School of Medicine, Marshall University; yuh@marshall.edu.

Abstract

Pseudomonas aeruginosa is a Gram-negative, environmental bacterium with versatile metabolic capabilities. P. aeruginosa is an opportunistic bacterial pathogen which establishes chronic pulmonary infections in patients with cystic fibrosis (CF). The overproduction of a capsular polysaccharide called alginate, also known as mucoidy, promotes the formation of mucoid biofilms which are more resistant than planktonic cells to antibiotic chemotherapy and host defenses. Additionally, the conversion from the nonmucoid to mucoid phenotype is a clinical marker for the onset of chronic infection in CF. Alginate overproduction by P. aeruginosa is an endergonic process which heavily taxes cellular energy. Therefore, alginate production is highly regulated in P. aeruginosa. To better understand alginate regulation, we describe a protocol using the mini-himar1 transposon mutagenesis for the identification of novel alginate regulators in a prototypic strain PAO1. The procedure consists of two basic steps. First, we transferred the mini-himar1 transposon (pFAC) from host E. coli SM10/λpir into recipient P. aeruginosa PAO1 via biparental conjugation to create a high-density insertion mutant library, which were selected on Pseudomonas isolation agar plates supplemented with gentamycin. Secondly, we screened and isolated the mucoid colonies to map the insertion site through inverse PCR using DNA primers pointing outward from the gentamycin cassette and DNA sequencing. Using this protocol, we have identified two novel alginate regulators, mucE (PA4033) and kinB (PA5484), in strain PAO1 with a wild-type mucA encoding the anti-sigma factor MucA for the master alginate regulator AlgU (AlgT, σ(22)). This high-throughput mutagenesis protocol can be modified for the identification of other virulence-related genes causing change in colony morphology.

PMID:
24637508
PMCID:
PMC4145724
DOI:
10.3791/51346
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
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