Navigation Links
Energy-saving bacteria resist antibiotics
Date:9/2/2008

Bacteria save energy by producing proteins that moonlight, having different roles at different times, which may also protect the microbes from being killed. The moonlighting activity of one enzyme from the tuberculosis bacterium makes it partially resistant to a family of broad-spectrum antibiotics, according to a paper published in the September issue of the journal Microbiology.

"Glutamate racemase, or MurI, is an enzyme that bacteria use to make the building blocks of cell walls," said Professor Valakunja Nagaraja from the Indian Institute of Science in Bangalore, India. "MurI from Mycobacterium tuberculosis also stops the enzyme DNA gyrase from working, which in turn stops DNA replication and cell division."

The researchers found that the two different functions work independently of one another the enzyme's ability to make cell wall components does not affect its ability to inhibit DNA gyrase and vice versa.

DNA gyrase is involved in DNA replication, which happens when bacteria reproduce. A family of antibiotics called fluoroquinolones target this enzyme, killing the bacteria that cause infections such as cholera, anthrax, gonorrhoea, meningitis, E. coli and MRSA. The researchers found that when MurI binds to DNA gyrase, it takes gyrase away from substrate DNA. Because of this, antibiotics cannot bind and stop it from working, so the bacteria become resistant to treatment.

"Our findings suggest that MurI has a role in safeguarding DNA gyrase from attack by antibiotics," said Professor Nagaraja. "The moonlighting activity of MurI seems to have evolved more recently to protect and control DNA gyrase."

MurI is not alone in its moonlighting activities; other bacterial enzymes and proteins also carry out different functions. But why has this ability evolved? "Multifunctional proteins are mostly common enzymes that have acquired different roles over the long period of their existence," said Professor Nagaraja. "As long as these additional roles do not interfere with the original function of the protein, they could benefit the cell by providing a competitive advantage during evolution."

By having multifunctional enzymes, a cell has fewer proteins to build, therefore less DNA to replicate. This means they save a great deal of energy in growth and reproduction. Moonlighting proteins can also control cellular activities, such as DNA replication in the case of MurI.

"An alarming increase in the emergence of multi-drug resistant strains of M. tuberculosis has led to an active search for novel drug targets," said Professor Nagaraja. "Our results may help us to discover molecules to target MurI, to prevent bacteria from making cell walls and develop a successful treatment for a wide range of bacterial infections."


'/>"/>

Contact: Lucy Goodchild
l.goodchild@sgm.ac.uk
44-011-898-81843
Society for General Microbiology
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. Shuttle brings space-grown strep bacteria back for study
2. The worlds oldest bacteria
3. Bacteria from sponges make new pharmaceuticals
4. Boston University biomedical engineers find chink in bacterias armor
5. University of Leicester scientists discover technique to help friendly bacteria
6. Spaceflight shown to alter ability of bacteria to cause disease
7. A tiny pinch from a z-ring helps bacteria cells divide
8. Legionnaires bacterial proteins work together to survive
9. Scripps research team blocks bacterial communication system to prevent deadly staph infections
10. NSF awards Stevens team $1 million for research on smart, bacteria-repellent nanohydrogels
11. Chemical compound present in detergents produce bacteria alterations in agricultural soils
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:6/22/2016)... June 22, 2016 On Monday, the Department ... industry to share solutions for the Biometric Exit Program. ... and Border Protection (CBP), explains that CBP intends to ... the United States , in order ... defeat imposters. Logo - http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20160622/382209LOGO ...
(Date:6/9/2016)... June 9, 2016  Perkotek an innovation leader in attendance control systems is proud ... work hours, for employers to make sure the right employees are actually signing in, ... ... ... ...
(Date:6/2/2016)... 2, 2016   The Weather Company , an IBM ... an industry-first capability in which consumers will be able to ... ask questions via voice or text and receive relevant information ... Marketers have long sought an advertising solution that ... be personal, relevant and valuable; and can scale across millions ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:6/27/2016)... ... June 27, 2016 , ... ... findings on what they believe could be a new and helpful biomarker for ... research. Click here to read it now. , Biomarkers are components ...
(Date:6/27/2016)... -- Liquid Biotech USA , Inc. ... Research Agreement with The University of Pennsylvania ("PENN") ... patients.  The funding will be used to assess ... outcomes in cancer patients undergoing a variety of ... to support the design of a therapeutic, decision-making ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... , ... While the majority of commercial spectrophotometers and fluorometers use the z-dimension ... are higher end machines that use the more unconventional z-dimension of 20mm. Z-dimension ... bottom of the cuvette holder. , FireflySci has developed several Agilent flow cell ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... , June 23, 2016   Boston ... of novel compounds designed to target cancer stemness ... has been granted Orphan Drug Designation from the ... treatment of gastric cancer, including gastroesophageal junction (GEJ) ... inhibitor designed to inhibit cancer stemness pathways by ...
Breaking Biology Technology: