The DNA-binding specificity of the Bacillus anthracis AbrB protein.

Research paper by Mark A MA Strauch, Petek P Ballar, Austin J AJ Rowshan, Katherine L KL Zoller

Indexed on: 09 Jun '05Published on: 09 Jun '05Published in: Microbiology (Reading, England)


The Bacillus subtilis AbrB protein is a DNA-binding global regulator of a plethora of functions that are expressed during the transition from exponential growth to stationary phase and under suboptimal growth conditions. AbrB orthologues have been identified in a variety of prokaryotic organisms, notably in all species of Bacillus, Clostridium and Listeria that have been examined. Based on amino acid sequence identity in the N-terminal domains of the orthologues from B. subtilis and Bacillus anthracis, it was predicted that the proteins might display identical DNA-binding specificities. The binding of purified B. anthracis AbrB (AbrB(BA)) and purified B. subtilis AbrB (AbrB(BS)) at DNA targets of B. subtilis, B. anthracis and a synthetic origin was compared. In all cases examined, DNA-binding specificity was identical as judged by DNase I footprinting. In B. subtilis cells, the B. anthracis promoters from the atxA and abrB genes were regulated by AbrB(BS), and the B. subtilis promoter from the yxbB operon was regulated by AbrB(BA).