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Chapter 13 : Growth, Sporulation, and Other Tough Decisions

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Growth, Sporulation, and Other Tough Decisions, Page 1 of 2

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Abstract:

Many types of bacteria produce dormant spores when faced with nutrient deprivation. The decision to enter the developmental pathway is made when the cell is faced with environmental conditions that are unsuitable for vigorous growth but still possesses the nutritional resources to complete development. During development two significant metabolic events occur. First, carbon limitation forces the cell to reduce the catabolism of organic molecules and redirect the flow of carbon to anabolic pathways. Second, the biosynthetic priority shifts from the synthesis of growth-related macromolecular products, such as chromosomes and ribosomes, to structural components of the spore. The myxobacterium is an aerobic chemoorganotroph that derives carbon, nitrogen, and energy through catabolism of amino acids. Cell elongation and DNA and stable-RNA synthesis cease in SocE-depleted cells. In , the stringent response helps regulate the growth rate. When is starved for amino acids, charged tRNA molecules become limiting and ribosomes pause during elongation. The and genes are both regulated by RelA but have opposite transcription patterns during the life cycle. A drop of rain or a gust of wind could disperse a population to densities insufficient to complete fruiting body development. If this occurs after A-signaling, then the decision to resume growth would need to be made promptly and in a different manner.

Citation: Shimkets L. 2000. Growth, Sporulation, and Other Tough Decisions, p 277-284. In Brun Y, Shimkets L (ed), Prokaryotic Development. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555818166.ch13
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Figures

Image of FIGURE 1
FIGURE 1

Light-inducible expression of . A allele lacking essential 3' coding sequences (soc') was placed under control of the promoter (p) and cloned into pBGS18, a kanamycin-resistant derivative of pUC19 which is unable to replicate in , and electroporated into the wild-type strain DK1622. A single homologous integration event produced a merodiploid in which only the functional copy of is transcribed from and activated by blue light ( ). (This figure is derived from ).

Citation: Shimkets L. 2000. Growth, Sporulation, and Other Tough Decisions, p 277-284. In Brun Y, Shimkets L (ed), Prokaryotic Development. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555818166.ch13
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Image of FIGURE 2
FIGURE 2

Model for signaling events during early development, including the stringent response, A-signaling, and growth control by the C-signaling protein CsgA. Individual cells respond to amino acid starvation by producing the alarmones (p)ppGpp through the stringent pathway ( ). Accumulation of (p)ppGpp activates the population-sensing pathway A-signaling proteins AsgA, AsgB, and AsgC, which leads to protease secretion ( ). The (p)ppGpp pool also inactivates the transcriptional units and activates the transcriptional unit ( ). Extracellular-proteases hydrolyze cell surface-associated proteins to generate the A-signal amino acids ( ). The carbon and energy in these imported amino acids is diverted from growth functions to developmental functions by arrest of the vegetative macromolecular synthesis ( ). The CsgA-dependent growth inhibition leads to amino acid-independent (p)ppGpp accumulation through RelA and is antagonized by SocE.

Citation: Shimkets L. 2000. Growth, Sporulation, and Other Tough Decisions, p 277-284. In Brun Y, Shimkets L (ed), Prokaryotic Development. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555818166.ch13
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