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High genetic variability of the Streptococcus thermophilus cse central part, a repeat rich region required for full cell segregation activity

Abstract : The cse gene of Streptococcus thermophilus encodes an extracytoplasmic protein involved in cell segregation. The Cse protein consists of two putative domains: a cell wall attachment LysM domain and a catalytic CHAP domain. These two domains are spaced by an interdomain linker, known as Var-Cse, previously reported to be highly divergent between two S. thermophilus strains. The aim of this study was to assess the extent of this intraspecific variability and the functional involvement of the var-cse region in cell segregation. Analysis of the var-cse sequence of 19 different strains allowed detection of 11 different alleles, varying from 390 bp to 543 bp, all containing interspersed and tandem nucleotides repeats. Overall, 11 different repeat units were identified and some series of these small repeats, named supermotifs, form large repeats. Results suggested that var-cse evolved by deletion of all or part of the repeats and by duplication of repeats or supermotifs. Moreover, sequence analysis of the whole cse locus revealed that the cse ORF is mosaic suggesting that var-cse polymorphism resulted from horizontal transfer. The partial deletion of the var-cse region of the S. thermophilus strain CNRZ368 led to the lengthening of the number of cells per streptococcal chain, indicating that this region is required for full cell segregation in S. thermophilus strain CNRZ368.
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https://hal.univ-lorraine.fr/hal-01631245
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Frédéric Borges, Séverine Layec, Annabelle Fernandez, Bernard Decaris, Nathalie Leblond-Bourget. High genetic variability of the Streptococcus thermophilus cse central part, a repeat rich region required for full cell segregation activity. Antonie van Leeuwenhoek, Springer Verlag, 2006, 90 (3), pp.245 - 255. ⟨10.1007/s10482-006-9079-5⟩. ⟨hal-01631245⟩

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