Summary During pathogenesis, Mycobacterium tuberculosis (Mtb) colonizes environments, such as the macrophage or necrotic granuloma, that are acidic and rich in cholesterol and fatty acids. The goal of this study was to examine how acidic pH and available carbon sources interact to regulate Mtb physiology. Here we report that Mtb growth at acidic pH requires host-associated carbon sources that function at the intersection of glycolysis and the TCA cycle, such as pyruvate, acetate, oxaloacetate and cholesterol. In contrast, in other tested carbon sources, Mtb fully arrests its growth at acidic pH and establishes a state of non-replicating persistence. Growth-arrested Mtb is resuscitated by the addition of pyruvate suggesting that growth arrest is due to a pH-dependent checkpoint on metabolism. Additionally, we demonstrate that the phoPR two-component regulatory system is required to slow Mtb growth at acidic pH and functions to maintain redox homeostasis. Transcriptional profiling and functional metabolic studies demonstrate that signals from acidic pH and carbon source are integrated to remodel pathways associated with anaplerotic central metabolism, lipid anabolism and the regeneration of oxidized cofactors. Because phoPR is required for Mtb virulence in animals, we suggest that pH-driven adaptation may be critical to Mtb pathogenesis.
The Mycobacterium tuberculosis (Mtb) DosRST two-component regulatory system promotes the survival of Mtb during non-replicating persistence (NRP). NRP bacteria help drive the long course of tuberculosis therapy; therefore, chemical inhibition of DosRST may inhibit the ability of Mtb to establish persistence and thus shorten treatment. Using a DosRST-dependent fluorescent Mtb reporter strain, a whole-cell phenotypic high-throughput screen of a ∼540,000 compound small-molecule library was conducted. The screen discovered novel inhibitors of the DosRST regulon, including three compounds that were subject to follow-up studies: artemisinin, HC102A and HC103A. Under hypoxia, all three compounds inhibit Mtb-persistence-associated physiological processes, including triacylglycerol synthesis, survival and antibiotic tolerance. Artemisinin functions by disabling the heme-based DosS and DosT sensor kinases by oxidizing ferrous heme and generating heme-artemisinin adducts. In contrast, HC103A inhibits DosS and DosT autophosphorylation activity without targeting the sensor kinase heme.
BackgroundThe mitochondrial unfolded protein response (mitoUPR) is a stress response pathway activated by disruption of proteostasis in the mitochondria. This pathway has been proposed to influence lifespan, with studies suggesting that mitoUPR activation has complex effects on longevity.ResultsHere, we examined the contribution of the mitoUPR to the survival and lifespan of three long-lived mitochondrial mutants in Caenorhabditis elegans by modulating the levels of ATFS-1, the central transcription factor that mediates the mitoUPR. We found that clk-1, isp-1, and nuo-6 worms all exhibit an ATFS-1-dependent activation of the mitoUPR. While loss of atfs-1 during adulthood does not affect lifespan in any of these strains, absence of atfs-1 during development prevents clk-1 and isp-1 worms from reaching adulthood and reduces the lifespan of nuo-6 mutants. Examining the mechanism by which deletion of atfs-1 reverts nuo-6 lifespan to wild-type, we find that many of the transcriptional changes present in nuo-6 worms are mediated by ATFS-1. Genes exhibiting an ATFS-1-dependent upregulation in nuo-6 worms are enriched for transcripts that function in stress response and metabolism. Consistent, with this finding, loss of atfs-1 abolishes the enhanced stress resistance observed in nuo-6 mutants and prevents upregulation of multiple stress response pathways including the HIF-1-mediated hypoxia response, SKN-1-mediated oxidative stress response and DAF-16-mediated stress response.ConclusionsOur results suggest that in the long-lived mitochondrial mutant nuo-6 activation of the mitoUPR causes atfs-1-dependent changes in the expression of genes involved in stress response and metabolism, which contributes to the extended longevity observed in this mutant. This work demonstrates that the mitoUPR can modulate multiple stress response pathways and suggests that it is crucial for the development and lifespan of long-lived mitochondrial mutants.Electronic supplementary materialThe online version of this article (10.1186/s12915-018-0615-3) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.
bMycobacterium tuberculosis must sense and adapt to host environmental cues to establish and maintain an infection. The twocomponent regulatory system PhoPR plays a central role in sensing and responding to acidic pH within the macrophage and is required for M. tuberculosis intracellular replication and growth in vivo. Therefore, the isolation of compounds that inhibit PhoPR-dependent adaptation may identify new antivirulence therapies to treat tuberculosis. Here, we report that the carbonic anhydrase inhibitor ethoxzolamide inhibits the PhoPR regulon and reduces pathogen virulence. We show that treatment of M. tuberculosis with ethoxzolamide recapitulates phoPR mutant phenotypes, including downregulation of the core PhoPR regulon, altered accumulation of virulence-associated lipids, and inhibition of Esx-1 protein secretion. Quantitative single-cell imaging of a PhoPR-dependent fluorescent reporter strain demonstrates that ethoxzolamide inhibits PhoPR-regulated genes in infected macrophages and mouse lungs. Moreover, ethoxzolamide reduces M. tuberculosis growth in both macrophages and infected mice. Ethoxzolamide inhibits M. tuberculosis carbonic anhydrase activity, supporting a previously unrecognized link between carbonic anhydrase activity and PhoPR signaling. We propose that ethoxzolamide may be pursued as a new class of antivirulence therapy that functions by modulating expression of the PhoPR regulon and Esx-1-dependent virulence. Mycobacterium tuberculosis is a successful pathogen because it overcomes a variety of obstacles raised by the host immune response. The ability of M. tuberculosis to sense host immune pressures and orchestrate adaptive responses to these cues is essential for pathogen virulence. It follows that the identification of chemical compounds that disrupt the ability of M. tuberculosis to sense and respond to host cues may function to attenuate pathogen virulence.M. tuberculosis uses environmental pH as a cue to modulate its physiology. These pH-dependent adaptations play a central role in M. tuberculosis pathogenesis (1). Transcriptional profiling of M. tuberculosis-infected macrophages identified an M. tuberculosis regulon induced at acidic pH (2) that significantly overlaps the PhoPR two-component regulatory system regulon (3-5), suggesting a role for PhoPR in pH-driven adaptation. phoPR-inactivated M. tuberculosis mutant strains are highly attenuated during mouse and guinea pig infections, supporting that this pathway is a suitable target for new drug development (6, 7).Conventional antimicrobial discovery campaigns seeking to identify bactericidal or bacteriostatic compounds are often performed in vitro. However, many targets required for M. tuberculosis pathogenesis, including environmental sensing pathways, are essential only in vivo and would be missed using standard approaches. Compounds that target in vivo essential bacterial virulence factors are known as antivirulence therapies (8). Antivirulence therapies are advantageous over traditional antibiotics because they preserve e...
Mild deficits in mitochondrial function have been shown to increase lifespan in multiple species including worms, flies and mice. Here, we study three C. elegans mitochondrial mutants (clk-1, isp-1 and nuo-6) to identify overlapping genetic pathways that contribute to their longevity. We find that genes regulated by the FOXO transcription factor DAF-16 are upregulated in all three strains, and that the transcriptional changes present in these worms overlap significantly with the long-lived insulin-IGF1 signaling pathway mutant daf-2. We show that DAF-16 and multiple DAF-16 interacting proteins (MATH-33, IMB-2, CST-1/2, BAR-1) are required for the full longevity of all three mitochondrial mutants. Our results suggest that the activation of DAF-16 in these mutants results from elevated levels of reactive oxygen species. Overall, this work reveals an overlapping genetic pathway required for longevity in three mitochondrial mutants, and, combined with previous work, demonstrates that DAF-16 is a downstream mediator of lifespan extension in multiple pathways of longevity.
The Muller F element (4.2 Mb, ~80 protein-coding genes) is an unusual autosome of Drosophila melanogaster; it is mostly heterochromatic with a low recombination rate. To investigate how these properties impact the evolution of repeats and genes, we manually improved the sequence and annotated the genes on the D. erecta, D. mojavensis, and D. grimshawi F elements and euchromatic domains from the Muller D element. We find that F elements have greater transposon density (25–50%) than euchromatic reference regions (3–11%). Among the F elements, D. grimshawi has the lowest transposon density (particularly DINE-1: 2% vs. 11–27%). F element genes have larger coding spans, more coding exons, larger introns, and lower codon bias. Comparison of the Effective Number of Codons with the Codon Adaptation Index shows that, in contrast to the other species, codon bias in D. grimshawi F element genes can be attributed primarily to selection instead of mutational biases, suggesting that density and types of transposons affect the degree of local heterochromatin formation. F element genes have lower estimated DNA melting temperatures than D element genes, potentially facilitating transcription through heterochromatin. Most F element genes (~90%) have remained on that element, but the F element has smaller syntenic blocks than genome averages (3.4–3.6 vs. 8.4–8.8 genes per block), indicating greater rates of inversion despite lower rates of recombination. Overall, the F element has maintained characteristics that are distinct from other autosomes in the Drosophila lineage, illuminating the constraints imposed by a heterochromatic milieu.
The continued rise of antibiotic resistant bacterial infections has motivated alternative strategies for target discovery and treatment of infections. Antivirulence therapies function through inhibition of in vivo required virulence factors to disarm the pathogen rather than directly target viability or growth. This approach to treating bacterial-mediated diseases may have advantages over traditional antibiotics as it targets factors specific for pathogenesis, potentially reducing selection for resistance and limiting collateral damage to the resident microbiota. This review examines vulnerable molecular mechanisms used by bacteria to cause disease and the antivirulence compounds that sabotage these virulence pathways. By expanding the study of antimicrobial targets beyond those that are essential for growth, antivirulence strategies offer new, innovative opportunities to combat infectious diseases.
Mutations affecting components of the mitochondrial electron transport chain have been shown to increase lifespan in multiple species including the worm Caenorhabditis elegans. While it was originally proposed that decreased generation of reactive oxygen species (ROS) resulting from lower rates of electron transport could account for the observed increase in lifespan, recent evidence indicates that ROS levels are increased in at least some of these long-lived mitochondrial mutants. Here, we show that the long-lived mitochondrial mutant isp-1 worms have increased resistance to oxidative stress. Our results suggest that elevated ROS levels in isp-1 worms cause the activation of multiple stress-response pathways including the mitochondrial unfolded protein response, the SKN-1-mediated stress response, and the hypoxia response. In addition, these worms have increased expression of specific antioxidant enzymes, including a marked upregulation of the inducible superoxide dismutase genes sod-3 and sod-5. Examining the contribution of sod-3 and sod-5 to the oxidative stress resistance in isp-1 worms revealed that loss of either of these genes increased resistance to oxidative stress, but not other forms of stress. Deletion of sod-3 or sod-5 decreased the lifespan of isp-1 worms and further exacerbated their slow physiologic rates. Thus, while deletion of sod-3 and sod-5 genes has little impact on stress resistance, physiologic rates or lifespan in wild-type worms, these genes are required for the longevity of isp-1 worms. Overall, this work shows that the increased resistance to oxidative stress in isp-1 worms does not account for their longevity, and that resistance to oxidative stress can be experimentally dissociated from lifespan.
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