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Intestinal inflammation is a risk factor for colorectal cancer formation, but the underlying mechanisms remain unknown. Here, we investigated whether colitis alters the colonic microbiota to enhance its cancer-inducing activity. Colitis increased epithelial oxygenation in the colon of mice and drove an expansion of within the gut-associated microbial community through aerobic respiration. An aerobic expansion of colibactin-producing was required for the cancer-inducing activity of this pathobiont in a mouse model of colitis-associated colorectal cancer formation. We conclude that increased epithelial oxygenation in the colon is associated with an expansion of a prooncogenic driver species, thereby increasing the cancer-inducing activity of the microbiota. One of the environmental factors important for colorectal cancer formation is the gut microbiota, but the habitat filters that control its cancer-inducing activity remain unknown. Here, we show that chemically induced colitis elevates epithelial oxygenation in the colon, thereby driving an expansion of colibactin-producing , a prooncogenic driver species. These data suggest that elevated epithelial oxygenation is a potential risk factor for colorectal cancer formation because the consequent changes in the gut habitat escalate the cancer-inducing activity of the microbiota.
Copyright © 2019 Cevallos et al.
Inositide lipid (PIP) and soluble (IP) signaling pathways produce essential cellular codes conserved in eukaryotes. In many cases, deconvoluting metabolic and functional aspects of individual pathways are confounded by promiscuity and multiplicity of PIP and IP kinases and phosphatases. We report a molecular genetic approach that reconstitutes eukaryotic inositide lipid and soluble pathways in a prokaryotic cell which inherently lack inositide kinases and phosphatases in their genome. By expressing synthetic cassettes of eukaryotic genes, we have reconstructed the heterologous formation of a range of inositide lipids, including PI(3)P, PI(4,5)P and PIP. In addition, we report the reconstruction of lipid-dependent production of inositol hexakisphosphate (IP). Our synthetic system is scalable, reduces confounding metabolic issues, for example it is devoid of inositide phosphatases and orthologous kinases, and enables accurate characterization gene product enzymatic activity and substrate selectivity. This genetically engineered tool is designed to help interpret metabolic pathways and may facilitate in vivo testing of regulators and small molecule inhibitors. In summary, heterologous expression of inositide pathways in bacteria provide a malleable experimental platform for aiding signaling biologists and offers new insights into metabolism of these essential pathways.
Copyright © 2019 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd.. All rights reserved.
Chronic inflammation and gut microbiota dysbiosis, in particular the bloom of genotoxin-producing strains, are risk factors for the development of colorectal cancer. Here, we sought to determine whether precision editing of gut microbiota metabolism and composition could decrease the risk for tumor development in mouse models of colitis-associated colorectal cancer (CAC). Expansion of experimentally introduced strains in the azoxymethane/dextran sulfate sodium colitis model was driven by molybdoenzyme-dependent metabolic pathways. Oral administration of sodium tungstate inhibited molybdoenzymes and selectively decreased gut colonization with genotoxin-producing and other Enterobacteriaceae. Restricting the bloom of Enterobacteriaceae decreased intestinal inflammation and reduced the incidence of colonic tumors in two models of CAC, the azoxymethane/dextran sulfate sodium colitis model and azoxymethane-treated, -deficient mice. We conclude that metabolic targeting of protumoral Enterobacteriaceae during chronic inflammation is a suitable strategy to prevent the development of malignancies arising from gut microbiota dysbiosis.
© 2019 Zhu et al.
Abasic (AP) sites are one of the most common DNA lesions that block replicative polymerases. 5-hydroxymethylcytosine binding, embryonic stem cell-specific protein (HMCES) recognizes and processes these lesions in the context of single-stranded DNA (ssDNA). A HMCES DNA-protein cross-link (DPC) intermediate is thought to shield the AP site from endonucleases and error-prone polymerases. The highly evolutionarily conserved SOS-response associated peptidase (SRAP) domain of HMCES and its Escherichia coli ortholog YedK mediate lesion recognition. Here we uncover the basis of AP site protection by SRAP domains from a crystal structure of the YedK DPC. YedK forms a stable thiazolidine linkage between a ring-opened AP site and the α-amino and sulfhydryl substituents of its amino-terminal cysteine residue. The thiazolidine linkage explains the remarkable stability of the HMCES DPC, its resistance to strand cleavage and the proteolysis requirement for resolution. Furthermore, its structure reveals that HMCES has specificity for AP sites in ssDNA at junctions found when replicative polymerases encounter the AP lesion.
Adverse alterations in the composition of the gut microbiota have been implicated in the development of obesity and a variety of chronic diseases. Re-engineering the gut microbiota to produce beneficial metabolites is a potential strategy for treating these chronic diseases. N-acyl-phosphatidylethanolamines (NAPEs) are a family of bioactive lipids with known anti-obesity properties. Previous studies showed that administration of Escherichia coli Nissle 1917 (EcN) engineered with Arabidopsis thaliana NAPE synthase to produce NAPEs imparted resistance to obesity induced by a high-fat diet that persisted after ending their administration. In prior studies, mice were pre-treated with ampicillin prior to administering engineered EcN for 8 weeks in drinking water. If use of antibiotics and long-term administration are required for beneficial effects, implementation of this strategy in humans might be problematic. Studies were therefore undertaken to determine if less onerous protocols could still impart persistent resistance and sustained NAPE biosynthesis. Administration of engineered EcN for only 2 weeks without pre-treatment with antibiotics sufficed to establish persistent resistance. Sustained NAPE biosynthesis by EcN was required as antibiotic treatment after administration of the engineered EcN markedly attenuated its effects. Finally, heterologous expression of human phospholipase A/acyltransferase-2 (PLAAT2) in EcN provided similar resistance to obesity as heterologous expression of A. thaliana NAPE synthase, confirming that NAPEs are the bioactive mediator of this resistance.
Lack of reproducibility is a prominent problem in biomedical research. An important source of variation in animal experiments is the microbiome, but little is known about specific changes in the microbiota composition that cause phenotypic differences. Here, we show that genetically similar laboratory mice obtained from four different commercial vendors exhibited marked phenotypic variation in their susceptibility to Salmonella infection. Faecal microbiota transplant into germ-free mice replicated donor susceptibility, revealing that variability was due to changes in the gut microbiota composition. Co-housing of mice only partially transferred protection against Salmonella infection, suggesting that minority species within the gut microbiota might confer this trait. Consistent with this idea, we identified endogenous Enterobacteriaceae, a low-abundance taxon, as a keystone species responsible for variation in the susceptibility to Salmonella infection. Protection conferred by endogenous Enterobacteriaceae could be modelled by inoculating mice with probiotic Escherichia coli, which conferred resistance by using its aerobic metabolism to compete with Salmonella for resources. We conclude that a mechanistic understanding of phenotypic variation can accelerate development of strategies for enhancing the reproducibility of animal experiments.
Enterohemorrhagic (EHEC) is a major cause of foodborne gastrointestinal illness. EHEC uses a specialized type III secretion system (T3SS) to form attaching and effacing lesions in the colonic epithelium and outcompete commensal gut microbiota to cause disease. A recent report in (E. A. Cameron, M. M. Curtis, A. Kumar, G. M. Dunny, et al., mBio 9:e02204-18, 2018, https://doi.org/10.1128/mBio.02204-18) describes a new role for gut commensals in potentiating disease caused by EHEC. Proteases produced by EHEC and the prevalent human commensal cleave proteins in the EHEC T3SS translocon that modulate T3SS function. protease activity promotes translocation of bacterial effectors required for lesion formation. These results describe a new role for the microbiota in gastrointestinal disease that could uncover future treatments to prevent the spread of gastroenteritis.
Copyright © 2019 Palmer and Skaar.
Obesity increases the risk for cardiometabolic diseases. N-acyl phosphatidylethanolamines (NAPEs) are precursors of N-acylethanolamides, which are endogenous lipid satiety factors. Incorporating engineered bacteria expressing NAPEs into the gut microbiota retards development of diet induced obesity in wild-type mice. Because NAPEs can also exert anti-inflammatory effects, we hypothesized that administering NAPE-expressing bacteria to low-density lipoprotein receptor (Ldlr) mice fed a Western diet would improve various indices of cardiometabolic disease manifested by these mice. NAPE-expressing E. coli Nissle 1917 (pNAPE-EcN), control Nissle 1917 (pEcN), or vehicle (veh) were given via drinking water to Ldlr mice for 12 weeks. Compared to pEcN or veh treatment, pNAPE-EcN significantly reduced body weight and adiposity, hepatic triglycerides, fatty acid synthesis genes, and increased expression of fatty acid oxidation genes. pNAPE-EcN also significantly reduced markers for hepatic inflammation and early signs of fibrotic development. Serum cholesterol was reduced with pNAPE-EcN, but atherosclerotic lesion size showed only a non-significant trend for reduction. However, pNAPE-EcN treatment reduced lesion necrosis by 69% indicating an effect on preventing macrophage inflammatory death. Our results suggest that incorporation of NAPE expressing bacteria into the gut microbiota can potentially serve as an adjuvant therapy to retard development of cardiometabolic disease.
O -Alkylguanine DNA-alkyltransferase (AGT), a DNA repair protein, can form crosslinks with DNA. The AGT-DNA crosslinks are known to be mutagenic when AGT is heterologously expressed in Escherichia coli, as well as in mammalian cells. To understand the biological consequences, reliable access to AGT-oligonucleotide crosslinks is needed. This article describes the synthesis and characterization of site-specific AGT-oligonucleotide crosslinks at the N2-position of deoxyguanosine and N6-position of deoxyadenosine. We developed a post-oligomerization strategy for the synthesis of propargyl-modified oligonucleotides. Copper-catalyzed azide-alkyne cycloaddition was used as a key step to obtain the iodoacetamide-linked oligonucleotides, which serve as good electrophiles for the crosslinking reaction with cysteine-145 of the active site of AGT. Trypsinization of AGT and hydrolysis of oligonucleotides, combined with analysis by liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry, was utilized to confirm the nucleobase-adducted peptides. This method provides a useful strategy for the synthesis and characterization of site-specific DNA-protein crosslinks, which can be further used to understand proteolytic degradation-coupled DNA repair mechanisms. © 2019 by John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
© 2019 John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
Neonates are highly susceptible to infection with enteric pathogens, but the underlying mechanisms are not resolved. We show that neonatal chick colonization with Salmonella enterica serovar Enteritidis requires a virulence-factor-dependent increase in epithelial oxygenation, which drives pathogen expansion by aerobic respiration. Co-infection experiments with an Escherichia coli strain carrying an oxygen-sensitive reporter suggest that S. Enteritidis competes with commensal Enterobacteriaceae for oxygen. A combination of Enterobacteriaceae and spore-forming bacteria, but not colonization with either community alone, confers colonization resistance against S. Enteritidis in neonatal chicks, phenocopying germ-free mice associated with adult chicken microbiota. Combining spore-forming bacteria with a probiotic E. coli isolate protects germ-free mice from pathogen colonization, but the protection is lost when the ability to respire oxygen under micro-aerophilic conditions is genetically ablated in E. coli. These results suggest that commensal Enterobacteriaceae contribute to colonization resistance by competing with S. Enteritidis for oxygen, a resource critical for pathogen expansion.
Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.