Bacterial Signal Transduction: Networks and Drug Targets

Volume 631 of the series Advances in Experimental Medicine and Biology pp 40-53

The Two-Component Network and the General Stress Sigma Factor RpoS (σS) in Escherichia coli

  • Regine HenggeAffiliated withInstitut für Biologie-Mikrobiologie, FB Biologie, Chemie und Pharmazie, Freie, Universität Berlin Email author 

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The general stress sigma factor RpoS (σs) is induced buring entry into stationary phase and in response to multiple stress conditions. RpoS is regulated at the levels of transcription, translation, proteolysis and protein activity. A key factor in RpoS control is the two-component response regulator RssB, which acts as a direct recognition and targeting factor for ClpXP-mediated RpoS proteolysis. A major, but not the only phosphodonor for RssB is the complex histidine sensor kinase ArcB. ArcB coordinates RpoS proteolysis with rpoS transcription by also phosphorylating the response regulator ArcA, which besides controlling a large regulon, also acts as a transcriptional repressor for rpoS. ArcB activity depends, on the redox state of the respiratory chain, which links RpoS control to the balance between energy supply and available respiratory electron acceptor. In addition, the BarA/UvrY and Rcs phosphorelay systems can activate rpoS transcription and translation respectively. These systems are involved in the control of motility, biofilm formation and/or virulence, suggesting that further studying a potential role of RpoS in these physiological functions may be rewarding.