E 6 - Gert Bange

Regulation of motility by the stringent response in Bacillus subtilis








Dr. Gert Bange

LOEWE Center for Synthetic Microbiology (SYNMIKRO) 

Hans-Meerwein-Straße, 35043 Marburg

+49 - 6421 - 2823361




Research summary:

The alarmones ppGpp and pppGpp (collectively named (p)ppGpp) play important roles in the environmental signal response of bacteria. Synthesis and degradation of (p)ppGpp rely on proteins of the RelA/SpoT homology (RSH)-type family that is highly conserved among the bacterial species. Enzymes of this class can synthesize ppGpp or (p)ppGpp by pyrophosphate transfer from ATP to the ribose 3’-OH group of GDP or GTP, respectively, or degrade (p)ppGpp by removing the pyrophosphate moiety from the 3’-OH group of the alarmone. In the Firmicutes, such as B. subtilis, S. aureus or L. monocytogenes, two additional small alarmone synthetases (SAS1 and SAS2) are present.

While we could recently characterize their biochemical and structural features in great detail, an understanding of their functional role within the cell in particular to the response of environmental signals is crucially missing. The aim of this proposal is to place SAS1 and SAS2 into the cellular signalling network of B. subtilis and to define the role of their (p)ppGpp product for motility regulation and response to zinc stress.



Altegoer FA, Rensing S, Bange G (2016). Structural basis for the CsrA-dependent modulation of translation initiation by an ancient regulatory protein. PNAS, 113(36):10168-73