Characterization of a novel gene related to antibiotic susceptibility in Pseudomonas aeruginosa.

Research paper by Lixin L Shen, Yanling Y Ma, Haihua H Liang

Indexed on: 08 Dec '11Published on: 08 Dec '11Published in: The Journal of Antibiotics


Pseudomonas aeruginosa is a human pathogen with increased intrinsic resistance to a large number of antibiotics used in clinical therapy. Therefore, understanding the mechanisms of resistance and developing therapy alternatives for P. aeruginosa are of profound importance. Previous work from our laboratory demonstrated that several mutants have isolated with altered expression of the phzA1B1C1D1E1F1G1 (phzA1) operon in the presence of sub-inhibitory concentrations (SICs) of tetracycline (TET). The present study investigates the roles of the PA0011 gene in mediating phzA1 expression at SIC of TET. The PA0011 gene encodes 2-OH-lauroytransferase by controlling the synthesis of the cell envelope and the outer membrane. We found that the PA0011 mutant strain was susceptible to several different antibiotics and environmental stresses. Complementation in the PA0011 mutant restored these phenotypes to wild-type levels. In addition, expression of the PA0011 gene, as monitored through a luciferase reporter, is increased at SICs of antibiotics. Indeed, the expression of the PA0011 gene increased about threefold in pqsR and pqsH mutants compared with the wild-type PAO1. However, the PA0011 gene negatively regulates the quorum sensing (QS) system. Taken together, these data suggest that PA0011 is involved in susceptibility to antimicrobial agents in P. aeruginosa, and that its susceptibility effect maybe partly dependent on increased QS expression.