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A Heterocyst-Specific Antisense RNA Contributes to Metabolic Reprogramming in Nostoc sp. PCC 7120.

Authors
  • Olmedo-Verd, Elvira1
  • Brenes-Ï Lvarez, Manuel1
  • Vioque, Agustï N1
  • Muro-Pastor, Alicia M1
  • 1 Instituto de Bioqu�mica Vegetal y Fotos�ntesis, Universidad de Sevilla and CSIC, Am�rico Vespucio 49, 41092 Sevilla, Spain. , (Spain)
Type
Published Article
Journal
Plant and Cell Physiology
Publisher
Oxford University Press
Publication Date
Aug 01, 2019
Volume
60
Issue
8
Pages
1646–1655
Identifiers
DOI: 10.1093/pcp/pcz087
PMID: 31093664
Source
Medline
Keywords
Language
English
License
Unknown

Abstract

Upon nitrogen deficiency, some filamentous cyanobacteria differentiate specialized cells, called heterocysts, devoted to N2 fixation. Heterocysts appear regularly spaced along the filaments and exhibit structural and metabolic adaptations, such as loss of photosynthetic CO2 fixation or increased respiration, to provide a proper microaerobic environment for its specialized function. Heterocyst development is under transcriptional control of the global nitrogen regulator NtcA and the specific regulator HetR. Transcription of a large number of genes is induced or repressed upon nitrogen deficiency specifically in cells undergoing differentiation. In recent years, the HetR regulon has been described to include heterocyst-specific trans-acting small RNAs and antisense RNAs (asRNAs), suggesting that there is an additional layer of post-transcriptional regulation involved in heterocyst development. Here, we characterize in the cyanobacterium Nostoc (Anabaena) sp. PCC 7120 an asRNA, that we call as_glpX, transcribed within the glpX gene encoding the Calvin cycle bifunctional enzyme sedoheptulose-1,7-bisphosphatase/fructose-1,6-bisphosphatase (SBPase). Transcription of as_glpX is restricted to heterocysts and is induced very early during the process of differentiation. Expression of as_glpX RNA promotes the cleavage of the glpX mRNA by RNase III, resulting in a reduced amount of SBPase. Therefore, the early expression of this asRNA could contribute to the quick shut-down of CO2 fixation in those cells in the filament that are undergoing differentiation into heterocysts. In summary, as_glpX is the first naturally occurring asRNA shown to rapidly and dynamically regulate metabolic transformation in Nostoc heterocysts. The use of antisense transcripts to manipulate gene expression specifically in heterocysts could became a useful tool for metabolic engineering in cyanobacteria. � The Author(s) 2019. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Japanese Society of Plant Physiologists. All rights reserved. For permissions, please email: [email protected]

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