A two-component regulatory system modulates twitching motility in Dichelobacter nodosus

Publication Type:
Journal Article
Veterinary Microbiology, 2015, 179 (1-2), pp. 34 - 41
Issue Date:
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© 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved. Dichelobacter nodosus is the essential causative agent of footrot in sheep and type IV fimbriae-mediated twitching motility has been shownto be essential for virulence.Wehave identified a two-component signal transduction system (TwmSR) that shows similarity to chemosensory systems from other bacteria. Insertional inactivation of the gene encoding the response regulator, TwmR, led to a twitching motility defect, with the mutant having a reduced rate of twitching motility when compared to the wild-type and a mutant complemented with the wild-type twmR gene. The reduced rate of twitching motility was not a consequence of a reduced growth rate or decreased production of surface located fimbriae, but video microscopy indicated that it appeared to result from an overall loss of twitching directionality. These results suggest that a chemotactic response to environmental factors may play an important role in the D. nodosus-mediated disease process.
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