Bacterial regulatory networks of gene expression include the interaction of diverse types of molecules such as the small non-coding RNAs (sRNAs) and their cognate messenger RNAs (mRNAs). In this study, we demonstrated that the Salmonella Typhimurium sRNA SroC is significantly expressed between the late-exponential and stationary phase of growth in an rpoS-dependent manner. The expression of flagellar genes predicted as targets of this sRNA was quantitatively analyzed in both a ΔsroC mutant and a SroC-overexpressing (pSroC) strain. Deletion of sroC increased flagellar gene expression (i.e. flhBAE and fliE). Conversely, overexpression of SroC reduced flhBAE and fliE expression. These observations correlated with phenotypic evaluation of motility, where sroC deletion slightly increased motility, which in turn, was drastically reduced upon overexpression of SroC. The effects of deletion and overexpression of sroC in biofilm formation were also examined, where the ΔsroC and pSroC strains exhibited a reduced and increased ability to form biofilm, respectively. Furthermore, electron microscopy revealed that the wild-type strain overexpressing SroC had a non-flagellated phenotype. Taken together, our results showed that S. Typhimurium sRNA SroC modulates the flagellar synthesis by down-regulating the expression of flhBAE and fliE genes.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Molecular Biology