The divIVB operon of Bacillus subtilis includes the cell shape-associated mre genes, including the membrane-associated proteins MreC and MreD. TnphoA mutagenesis was utilized to analyze a topological model for MreC. MreC has a short cytoplasmic amino terminus, a single membrane-spanning domain, and a large carboxy terminal domain which lies externally to the outer leaflet of the cell membrane. Expression of the B. subtilis MreB protein, or the Mre C and D proteins, results in a morphological conversion of the Escherichia coli host cells from a rod to a roughly spherical cell, morphologically similar to mre-negative mutants of E. coli. Immunolocalization of the MreC protein in B. subtilis revealed that this protein is found at the midcell division site of the bacterial cells, consistent with the postulated role of the Mre proteins in the regulation of septum-specific peptidoglycan synthesis.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology