Molecular and Physiological Logics of the Pyruvate-Induced Response of a Novel Transporter in Bacillus subtilis

Teddy Charbonnier, Dominique Le Coq, Stephen McGovern, Magali Calabre, Olivier Delumeau, Stéphane Aymerich, Matthieu Jules
  • mBio, October 2017, ASM Journals
  • DOI: 10.1128/mbio.00976-17

Pyruvate Transport and Regulation in Bacillus subtilis

What is it about?

Pyruvate is a small-molecule metabolite ubiquitous in living cells. Several species also use it as a carbon source as well as excrete it into the environment. The bacterial systems for pyruvate import/export have yet to be discovered. We identified in the model bacterium Bacillus subtilis the first import/export system specific for pyruvate, PftAB, and the related regulations.

Why is it important?

Extracellular pyruvate acts as the signal molecule for the LytST twocomponent system (TCS), which in turn induces expression of the pyruvate transporter, PftAB. However, when the pyruvate influx is high, LytST activity is drastically retroinhibited. Such a retroinhibition challenges the rational design of novel nature-inspired sensors and synthetic switches but undoubtedly offers new possibilities for the development of integrated sensor/controller circuitry.

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The following have contributed to this page: Matthieu Jules and Dr Akos T Kovacs