Pujol for advice. This work was supported in part by the project with reference AGL2011-30461-C02-02 by the Ministerio de Ciencia e Innovación (Spain). Please note: Wiley-Blackwell is not responsible for the content or functionality of any supporting materials supplied by the authors. Any queries (other than missing material) should be directed to the corresponding author for the article. “
“The Gram-negative anaerobe Dichelobacter nodosus is the causative agent of footrot in sheep. Different strains of D. nodosus cause disease of differing severities, ranging from benign to virulent.
Virulent strains have greater twitching motility and secrete proteases that are more thermostable than those secreted by benign strains. We have identified polynucleotide phosphorylase (PNPase) as a putative virulence regulator and have proposed that PNPase expression is modulated by the adjacent integration of genetic elements. In this study, GSK126 manufacturer we compared PNPase activity in three virulent and four benign strains of D. nodosus and found that PNPase activity is lower in virulent learn more strains. We disrupted the pnpA gene in three benign D. nodosus strains and two virulent strains and showed that deletion of the S1 domain of PNPase reduced catalytic activity. In all but one case,
deletion of the PNPase S1 domain had no effect on the thermostability of extracellular proteases. However, this deletion resulted in an increase in twitching motility in benign, but not in virulent strains. Reconstruction of the pnpA gene in two mutant benign strains reduced twitching motility to the parental level. These results support the hypothesis that PNPase is a virulence repressor in benign strains of D. nodosus. Footrot is a mixed bacterial infection Parvulin of the hooves of sheep, goats and deer that leads to lameness. The Gram-negative anaerobic bacterium Dichelobacter nodosus is the principal causative agent (Beveridge, 1941). Different strains of D. nodosus cause disease of differing severities, ranging from benign to virulent. The extracellular proteases secreted by virulent
strains are more thermostable than proteases secreted by benign strains (Depiazzi & Richards, 1979). Virulent strains also have greater twitching motility, generated by polar type IV fimbriae, than benign strains (Depiazzi & Richards, 1985), and twitching motility is essential for virulence (Kennan et al., 2001; Han et al., 2008). Comparative analysis of DNA from virulent and benign strains has led to the identification of a series of genetic elements that integrate into the D. nodosus chromosome. These include the intA (Katz et al., 1991, 1992, 1994; Cheetham et al., 1995; Billington et al., 1996), intB (Bloomfield et al., 1997), intC (Bloomfield et al., 1997) and intD elements (Tanjung et al., 2009), each of which contains an integrase gene. A fifth integrated element, the virulence-related locus, vrl (Katz et al., 1991; Haring et al., 1995; Billington et al., 1999), lacks an integrase gene.