The sRNA MicF targets its own regulator Lrp and promotes a positive feedback loop
(English)Manuscript (preprint) (Other academic)
As much as 10% of all genes in Escherichia coli are controlled by the global transcription factor Lrp, whose expression changes depending on the nutritional status of the environment. The output of Lrp regulation can be modulated by cellular leucine, which either enhances or reverses the effect on Lrp-targeted promoters. In a bioinformatic search for sRNA targets, lrp was identified as a putative target for the MicF sRNA, whose expression is negatively regulated by Lrp. A deletion of micF resulted in higher Lrp levels, while overexpression of MicF strongly inhibited Lrp expression. Mutations in the predicted interaction sequence of MicF and lrp relieved MicF-dependent repression of Lrp synthesis, both in vivo and in vitro. The predicted base-pairing interaction was supported by structural probing. Additionally, we show that MicF specifically interferes with initiating ribosomes on the lrp mRNA in vitro. In vivo, MicF-dependent inhibition of Lrp synthesis resulted in increased expression of the livJ gene, a member of the Lrp regulon. Finally, MicF was shown to increase its own expression through Lrp, creating a positive feedback loop. These findings contribute to the understanding of Lrp regulation in particular and the involvement of sRNAs in regulatory networks in general.
MicF, Lrp, antisense RNA, transcription factor, positive feedback loop
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-130884OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-130884DiVA: diva2:351714