Mark R. O’Brian

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The Irr protein from the bacterium Bradyrhizobium japonicum is expressed under iron limitation to mediate iron control of haem biosynthesis. The regulatory input to Irr is the status of haem and its precursors iron and protoporphyrin at the site of haem synthesis. Here, we show that Irr controls the expression of iron transport genes and many other(More)
Bradyrhizobium japonicum expresses both Fur and Irr, proteins that mediate iron-dependent regulation of gene expression. Control of irr mRNA accumulation by iron was aberrant in a fur mutant strain, and Fur repressed an irr::lacZ promoter fusion in the presence of iron. Furthermore, metal-dependent binding of Fur to an irr gene promoter was demonstrated in(More)
Fur is a transcriptional regulator involved in iron-dependent control of gene expression in many bacteria. In this work we analyzed the phenotype of a fur mutant in Sinorhizobium meliloti, an alpha-proteobacterium that fixes N(2) in association with host plants. We demonstrated that some functions involved in high-affinity iron transport, siderophore(More)
Bacteria are exposed to reactive oxygen species from the environment and from those generated by aerobic metabolism. Catalases are heme proteins that detoxify H(2)O(2), and many bacteria contain more than one catalase enzyme. Also, the nonheme peroxidase alkyl hydroperoxide reductase (Ahp) is the major scavenger of endogenous H(2)O(2) in Escherichia coli.(More)
The heme biosynthesis enzyme delta-aminolevulinic acid dehydratase (ALAD) requires magnesium or zinc for activity, depending on the organism, and the heme moiety contains iron. Thus, metals are important for heme formation in at least two different ways. Bradyrhizobium japonicum ALAD* is an engineered derivative of wild-type ALAD that requires Zn2+ for(More)
An mbfA mutant of Bradyrhizobium japonicum defective in iron export is sensitive to short term exposure to high levels iron or H2O2. Here, we found that the mbfA strain grown in elevated iron media (100 μM) became resistant to those treatments, suggesting a stress response adaptation. The bfr gene encodes the iron storage protein bacterioferritin, and its(More)
Sinorhizobium meliloti has multiple systems for iron acquisition, including the use of haem as an iron source. Haem internalization involves the ShmR haem outer membrane receptor and the hmuTUV locus, which participates in haem transport across the cytoplasmic membrane. Previous studies have demonstrated that expression of the shmR gene is negatively(More)
The Bradyrhizobium japonicum transcriptional regulator Irr (iron response regulator) is a key regulator of the iron homeostasis, which is degraded in response to heme binding via a mechanism that involves oxidative modification of the protein. Here, we show that heme-bound Irr activates O2 to form highly reactive oxygen species (ROS) with the "active site(More)
Ensifer meliloti is a nitrogen-fixing symbiont of the alfalfa legume able to use heme as an iron source. The transport mechanism involved in heme acquisition in E. meliloti has been identified and characterized, but the fate of heme once inside the cell is not known. In silico analysis of E. meliloti 1021 genome revealed no canonical heme oxygenases(More)
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