A functional ferric uptake regulator (Fur) protein in the fish pathogen Piscirickettsia salmonis

Oscar Almarza, Katherine Valderrama, Manuel Ayala, Cristopher Segovia, Javier Santander

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Citations (Scopus)


Piscirickettsia salmonis, a Gram-negative fastidious facultative intracellular pathogen, is the causative agent of the salmonid rickettsial septicemia (SRS). The P. salmonis iron acquisition mechanisms and its molecular regulation are unknown. Iron is an essential element for bacterial pathogenesis. Typically, genes that encode for the iron acquisition machinery are regulated by the ferric uptake regulator (Fur) protein. P. salmonis fur sequence database reveals a diversity of fur genes without functional verification. Due to the fastidious nature of this bacterium, we evaluated the functionality of P. salmonis fur in the Salmonella Δfur heterologous system. Although P. salmonis fur gene strongly differed from the common Fur sequences, it restored the regulatory mechanisms of iron acquisition in Salmonella. We concluded that P. salmonis LF-89 has a conserved functional Fur protein, which reinforces the importance of iron during fish infection.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)49-55
Number of pages7
JournalInternational Microbiology
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2016


  • Ferric uptake regulator protein (Fur)
  • Fish pathogens
  • Iron acquisition
  • Piscirickettsia salmonis
  • Transcriptional regulatory element

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Microbiology
  • Microbiology (medical)


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