Defining Chaperone-Usher Fimbriae Repertoire in Serratia marcescens

Martín A. González-Montalvo, Faviola Tavares-Carreón, Gloria M. González, Hiram Villanueva-Lozano, Inmaculada Garcia-Romero, Viviana C. Zomosa-Signoret, Miguel A. Valvano, Angel Andrade*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

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Chaperone-usher (CU) fimbriae are surface organelles particularly prevalent among the Enterobacteriaceae. Mainly associated to their adhesive properties, CU fimbriae play key roles in biofilm formation and host cell interactions. Little is known about the fimbriome composition of the opportunistic human pathogen Serratia marcescens. Here, by using a search based on consensus fimbrial usher protein (FUP) sequences, we identified 421 FUPs across 39 S. marcescens genomes. Further analysis of the FUP-containing loci allowed us to classify them into 20 conserved CU operons, 6 of which form the S. marcescens core CU fimbriome. A new systematic nomenclature is proposed according to FUP sequence phylogeny. We also established an in vivo transcriptional assay comparing CU promoter expression between an environmental and a clinical isolate of S. marcescens, which revealed that promoters from 3 core CU operons (referred as fgovfpo, and fps) are predominantly expressed in the two strains and might represent key core adhesion appendages contributing to S. marcescens pathogenesis.
Original languageEnglish
Article number104857
Number of pages9
JournalMicrobial Pathogenesis
Early online date21 Mar 2021
Publication statusEarly online date - 21 Mar 2021


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