Lose to win: marT pseudogenization in Salmonella enterica serovar Typhi contributed to the surV-dependent survival to H2O2, and inside human macrophage-like cells

A. P. Ortega, N. A. Villagra, I. M. Urrutia, L. M. Valenzuela, A. Talamilla-Espinoza, A. A. Hidalgo, P. I. Rodas, F. Gil, I. L. Calderón, D. Paredes-Sabja, G. C. Mora, J. A. Fuentes

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The difference in host range between Salmonella enterica serovar Typhimurium (S. Typhimurium) and Salmonella enterica serovar Typhi (S. Typhi) can be partially attributed to the gain of functions, to the loss of functions (i.e. pseudogenization), or to a combination of both processes. As previously reported, the loss of functions by pseudogenization may play a role in bacterial evolution, especially in host-restricted pathogens such as S. Typhi. The marT-fidL operon, located at the SPI-3, encodes the MarT transcriptional regulator and a hypothetical protein (i.e. FidL) with no significant similarities to known proteins, respectively. Even though predicted S. Typhimurium FidL exhibit 99.4% identity with S. Typhi FidL, marT has been annotated as a pseudogene in S. Typhi. In this work, we found that S. Typhi expressing S. Typhimurium marT-fidL exhibited an increased accumulation of reactive oxygen species (ROS), leading to a decreased survival in presence of H2O2. Moreover, we found that that the presence of a functional copy of S. Typhimurium marT-fidL in S. Typhi resulted in a repression of surV (STY4039), an ORF found in the S. Typhi SPI-3 but absent from S. Typhimurium SPI-3, that contribute to the resistance to H2O2 by decreasing the accumulation of ROS. Finally, we observed that the presence of S. Typhimurium marT-fidL in S. Typhi negatively affected the survival inside macrophage-like cells, but not in epithelial cells, after 24 h post infection. Therefore, this work provides evidence arguing that marT pseudogenization in Salmonella Typhi contributed to the surV-dependent survival against H2O2, and inside human macrophage-like cells. This is a good example of how the loss of functions (marT pseudogenization) and the gain of functions (presence of surV) might contribute to phenotypic changes improving virulence.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)111-121
Number of pages11
JournalInfection, Genetics and Evolution
Volume45
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Nov 2016

Keywords

  • HO resistance
  • Macrophage survival
  • Pseudogene
  • Salmonella
  • marT
  • surV

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Microbiology
  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
  • Molecular Biology
  • Genetics
  • Microbiology (medical)
  • Infectious Diseases

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