The heat shock response in bacterial cells is characterized by rapid induction of heat shock protein expression, followed by an adaptation period during which heat shock protein synthesis decreases to a new steady-state level. In this study we found that after a shift to a high temperature the Clp ATPase (ClpE) in Lactococcus lactis is required for such a decrease in expression of a gene negatively regulated by the heat shock regulator (CtsR). Northern blot analysis showed that while a shift to a high temperature in wild-type cells resulted in a temporal increase followed by a decrease in expression of clpP encoding the proteolytic component of the Clp protease complex, this decrease was delayed in the absence of ClpE. Site-directed mutagenesis of the zinc-binding motif conserved in ClpE ATPases interfered with the ability to repress CtsR-dependent expression. Quantification of ClpE by Western blot analysis revealed that at a high temperature CIpE is subjected to ClpP-dependent processing and that disruption of the zinc finger domain renders GpE more susceptible. Interestingly, this domain resembles the N-terminal region of McsA, which was recently reported to interact with the CtsR homologue in Bacillus subtilis. Thus, our data point to a regulatory role of ClpE in turning off clpP gene expression following temporal heat shock induction, and we propose that this effect is mediated through CtsR.
|Journal||Journal of Bacteriology|
|Publication status||Published - 2003|