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MBio. 2014 Jun 24;5(3):e01349-14. doi: 10.1128/mBio.01349-14.

Novel components of the flagellar system in epsilonproteobacteria.

Author information

1
Department of Microbial Pathogenesis, Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, Connecticut, USA.
2
Department of Microbial Pathogenesis, Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, Connecticut, USA jorge.galan@yale.edu.

Abstract

Motility is essential for the pathogenesis of many bacterial species. Most bacteria move using flagella, which are multiprotein filaments that rotate propelled by a cell wall-anchored motor using chemical energy. Although some components of the flagellar apparatus are common to many bacterial species, recent studies have shown significant differences in the flagellar structures of different bacterial species. The molecular bases for these differences, however, are not understood. The flagella from epsilonproteobacteria, which include the bacterial pathogens Campylobacter jejuni and Helicobacter pylori, are among the most divergent. Using next-generation sequencing combined with transposon mutagenesis, we have conducted a comprehensive high-throughput genetic screen in Campylobacter jejuni, which identified several novel components of its flagellar system. Biochemical analyses detected interactions between the identified proteins and known components of the flagellar machinery, and in vivo imaging located them to the bacterial poles, where flagella assemble. Most of the identified new components are conserved within but restricted to epsilonproteobacteria. These studies provide insight into the divergent flagella of this group of bacteria and highlight the complexity of this remarkable structure, which has adapted to carry out its conserved functions in the context of widely diverse bacterial species.

IMPORTANCE:

Motility is essential for the normal physiology and pathogenesis of many bacterial species. Most bacteria move using flagella, which are multiprotein filaments that rotate propelled by a motor that uses chemical energy as fuel. Although some components of the flagellar apparatus are common to many bacterial species, recent studies have shown significant divergence in the flagellar structures across bacterial species. However, the molecular bases for these differences are not understood. The flagella from epsilonproteobacteria, which include the bacterial pathogens Campylobacter jejuni and Helicobacter pylori, are among the most divergent. We conducted a comprehensive genetic screen in Campylobacter jejuni and identified several novel components of the flagellar system. These studies provide important information to understand how flagella have adapted to function in the context of widely diverse sets of bacterial species and bring unique insight into the evolution and function of this remarkable bacterial organelle.

PMID:
24961693
PMCID:
PMC4073491
DOI:
10.1128/mBio.01349-14
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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