Environmental control of the in vivo oligomerization of nucleoid protein H-NS

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

  • Stella, Stefano
  • Maurizio Falconi
  • Matilde Lammi
  • Claudio O. Gualerzi
  • Cynthia L. Pon

The nucleoid-associated transcriptional repressor H-NS forms both dimers and tetramers in vivo. Two types of two-hybrid systems, one capable of detecting protein dimerization and the other protein tetramerization, have been used to determine whether environmental changes could affect the oligomerization capacity of this protein in the cell. Increasing the temperature from 37°C to 48°C and changing the pH between 4.0 and 9.0 did not influence either dimerization or tetramerization, whereas lowering the temperature below 25°C and increasing osmolarity were found to reduce the formation of H-NS tetramers, which are the active form of this protein, without affecting dimerization. These findings provide a rationale to explain the induction of H-NS expression during cold-shock, suggest a mechanism contributing to derepressing osmotic-shock genes transcriptionally regulated by H-NS and indicate that changes of the oligomerization properties of H-NS do not play a role in the H-NS and temperature-dependent control of virulence gene expression.

Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Molecular Biology
Issue number2
Pages (from-to)169-174
Number of pages6
Publication statusPublished - 13 Jan 2006

    Research areas

  • Environmental control, Protein dimerization and tetramerization, Transcriptional repression, Two-hybrid system

ID: 202333447