Flagellar motor tuning - The hybrid motor in Shewanella oneidensis MR-1

Anja Paulick, Thormann, Kai M. (Dr.), Biologie
Bacteria are exposed to constantly changing environments. An efficient way to navigate towards favourable conditions is flagella-mediated motility. Flagellar rotation is achieved by the bacterial flagellar motor, composed of the rotor and stator complexes which surround the rotor in a ring-like structure. As an exception among the Shewanella species, the fresh-water organism S. oneidensis MR-1 harbours two different stator complexes, the sodium-ion dependent PomAB and the proton-dependent
more » ... ton-dependent MotAB, differentially supporting rotation of a single polar flagellum. Both PomAB and MotAB are simultaneously present and required for full speed under low sodium-ion conditions. Although tightly anchored to the cell wall, stators are constantly exchanged even during ongoing rotation. Moreover, sodium-ion and proton-dependent stators can function with the same rotor. This raises the question of how PomAB and MotAB contribute to rotation of a single flagellum and whether PomAB and MotAB coexist in the stator ring of S. oneidensis MR-1, forming a hybrid motor. Here, I report a novel model for the dynamic adaptation of the rotor-stator configuration in response to the environmental sodium ion level in S. oneidensis MR-1. Transcriptional fusions to lucB revealed that both pomAB and motAB are concurrently transcribed. By using fluorescence microscopy, functional fusions of mCherry to the B-subunits revealed that in sharp contrast to MotB, a fraction of PomB is polarly positioned independently of the sodium-ion concentration. At low sodium-ion concentration, PomB and MotB appear to coexist in the flagellar motor. However, in the absence of PomAB, MotB is recruited to the flagellated pole independently of the sodium-ion concentration. Interestingly, induced production of PomAB displaces polar MotB from the motor and confines it to the membrane. B [...]
doi:10.17192/z2012.0924 fatcat:c35pcxdwcrhendcas2ntqh3z44