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Infect Immun. 2018 Jul 23;86(8). pii: e00957-17. doi: 10.1128/IAI.00957-17. Print 2018 Aug.

YopN Is Required for Efficient Effector Translocation and Virulence in Yersinia pseudotuberculosis.

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Department of Molecular Biology, Umeå Centre for Microbial Research UCMR, Umeå University, Umeå, Sweden.
Department of Molecular Biology, Laboratory for Molecular Infection Medicine Sweden MIMS, Umeå University, Umeå, Sweden.
Department of Molecular Biology, Umeå Centre for Microbial Research UCMR, Umeå University, Umeå, Sweden
Contributed equally


Type III secretion systems (T3SSs) are used by various Gram-negative pathogens to subvert the host defense by a host cell contact-dependent mechanism to secrete and translocate virulence effectors. While the effectors differ between pathogens and determine the pathogenic life style, the overall mechanism of secretion and translocation is conserved. T3SSs are regulated at multiple levels, and some secreted substrates have also been shown to function in regulation. In Yersinia, one of the substrates, YopN, has long been known to function in the host cell contact-dependent regulation of the T3SS. Prior to contact, through its interaction with TyeA, YopN blocks secretion. Upon cell contact, TyeA dissociates from YopN, which is secreted by the T3SS, resulting in the induction of the system. YopN has also been shown to be translocated into target cells by a T3SS-dependent mechanism. However, no intracellular function has yet been assigned to YopN. The regulatory role of YopN involves the N-terminal and C-terminal parts, while less is known about the role of the central region of YopN. Here, we constructed different in-frame deletion mutants within the central region. The deletion of amino acids 76 to 181 resulted in an unaltered regulation of Yop expression and secretion but triggered reduced YopE and YopH translocation within the first 30 min after infection. As a consequence, this deletion mutant lost its ability to block phagocytosis by macrophages. In conclusion, we were able to differentiate the function of YopN in translocation and virulence from its function in regulation.


Yersinia; YopN; phagocytosis; type III secretion; virulence

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