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Role of phosphorylated metabolic intermediates in the regulation of glutamine synthetase synthesis in Escherichia coli


Role of phosphorylated metabolic intermediates in the regulation of glutamine synthetase synthesis in Escherichia coli



Journal of Bacteriology 174(19): 6061-6070



ISSN/ISBN: 0021-9193

PMID: 1356964

DOI: 10.1128/jb.174.19.6061-6070.1992

Transcription of the Ntr regulon is controlled by the two-component system consisting of the response regulator NRI (NtrC) and the kinase/phosphatase NRII (NtrB), which both phosphorylates and dephosphorylates NRI. Even though in vitro transcription from nitrogen-regulated promoters requires phosphorylated NRI, NRII-independent activation of NRI also occurs in vivo. We show here that this activation likely involves acetyl phosphate; it is eliminated by mutations that reduce synthesis of acetyl phosphate and is elevated by a mutation expected to cause accumulation of acetyl phosphate. With purified components, we investigated the mechanism by which acetyl phosphate stimulates glutamine synthetase synthesis. Acetyl phosphate, carbamyl phosphate, and phosphoramidate but not ATP or phosphoenolpyruvate acted as substrates for the autophosphorylation of NRI in vitro. Phosphorylated NRI produced by this mechanism exhibited the properties associated with NRI phosphorylated by NRII, including the activated ATPase activity of the central domain of NRI and the ability to activate transcription from the nitrogen-regulated glutamine synthetase glnAp2 promoter.

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Accession: 018102516

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