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Convergence of Ser/Thr and two-component signaling to coordinate expression of the dormancy regulon in Mycobacterium tuberculosis.

Chao J.D., Papavinasasundaram K.G., Zheng X., Chavez-Steenbock A., Wang X., Lee G.Q., Av-Gay Y.

Signal transduction in Mycobacterium tuberculosis is mediated primarily by the Ser/Thr protein kinases and the two-component systems. The Ser/Thr kinase PknH has been shown to regulate growth of M. tuberculosis in a mouse model and in response to NO stress in vitro. Comparison of a pknH deletion mutant (ΔpknH) with its parental M. tuberculosis H37Rv strain using iTRAQ enabled us to quantify >700 mycobacterial proteins. Among these, members of the hypoxia- and NO-inducible dormancy (DosR) regulon were disregulated in the ΔpknH mutant. Using kinase assays, protein-protein interactions, and mass spectrometry analysis, we demonstrated that the two-component response regulator DosR is a substrate of PknH. PknH phosphorylation of DosR mapped to Thr(198) and Thr(205) on the key regulatory helix α10 involved in activation and dimerization of DosR. PknH Thr phosphorylation and DosS Asp phosphorylation of DosR cooperatively enhanced DosR binding to cognate DNA sequences. Transcriptional analysis comparing ΔpknH and parental M. tuberculosis revealed that induction of the DosR regulon was subdued in the ΔpknH mutant in response to NO. Together, these results indicate that PknH phosphorylation of DosR is required for full induction of the DosR regulon and demonstrate convergence of the two major signal transduction systems for the first time in M. tuberculosis.

J. Biol. Chem. 285:29239-29246(2010) [PubMed] [Europe PMC]

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