Zinc Sensors in Bacteria
Zinc sensors detect when critical thresholds in the amounts of zinc within cells have been surpassed. The sensors detect either (1) zinc excess to trigger removal, use, or storage of surplus atoms or (2) zinc deficiency to trigger acquisition of more atoms or to reduce demand.
Overview of Zinc Sensors in Bacteria
Bacteria possess multiple types (families) of DNA-binding, zinc-sensing regulators of gene transcription (Ma et al. 2009). Other family members detect other metals. More than one type of zinc sensor is commonly present in a cell. Membrane-associated two-component sensors which transduce the metal signal to a separate DNA-binding transcriptional regulator are known for some metals but are either absent or yet to be described for zinc.
Bacterial zinc sensors bind to the operator-promoter regions of genes encoding zinc export proteins...
- Outten CE, O’Halloran TV (2001) Femtomolar sensitivity of metalloregulatory proteins controlling zinc homeostasis Science 292:2488–2492Google Scholar