Presentation Type

Poster

Abstract

Borrelia burgdorferi is the bacterial agent that causes Lyme disease. The pathogenic bacteria are transmitted to vertebrates through tick feeding and are maintained in nature in an enzootic cycle. The expression of outer surface protein OspC is essential for B. burgdorferi to move from the tick to a mammal. Alternative sigma factor RpoS is responsible for inducing gene expression for OspC production during the enzootic cycle. RpoS is encoded by two versions of RNA: a long one, which is hypothesized to be required for transmission from the tick, and a short one, which is thought to be involved in infection of the mammal. We seek to understand the mechanism of how the long rpoS RNA is generated so that RpoS protein can activate ospC gene expression during transmission. Ribonucleases (RNases) are enzymes that cleave RNA. I hypothesize that the long rpoS RNA is generated by RNase Y cleaving an even longer rpoS RNA. Therefore, I constructed a recombinant strain of B. burgdorferi that expresses a recombinant RNase Y with a 10X-histidine tag in order to purify RNase Y from B. burgdorferi and directly assay the ability of this ribonuclease to cleave rpoS RNA.

Category

Life Sciences

Available for download on Monday, April 08, 2019

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Apr 15th, 3:00 PM Apr 15th, 4:00 PM

The role of RNase Y in rpoS transcript processing in Borrelia burgdorferi

Borrelia burgdorferi is the bacterial agent that causes Lyme disease. The pathogenic bacteria are transmitted to vertebrates through tick feeding and are maintained in nature in an enzootic cycle. The expression of outer surface protein OspC is essential for B. burgdorferi to move from the tick to a mammal. Alternative sigma factor RpoS is responsible for inducing gene expression for OspC production during the enzootic cycle. RpoS is encoded by two versions of RNA: a long one, which is hypothesized to be required for transmission from the tick, and a short one, which is thought to be involved in infection of the mammal. We seek to understand the mechanism of how the long rpoS RNA is generated so that RpoS protein can activate ospC gene expression during transmission. Ribonucleases (RNases) are enzymes that cleave RNA. I hypothesize that the long rpoS RNA is generated by RNase Y cleaving an even longer rpoS RNA. Therefore, I constructed a recombinant strain of B. burgdorferi that expresses a recombinant RNase Y with a 10X-histidine tag in order to purify RNase Y from B. burgdorferi and directly assay the ability of this ribonuclease to cleave rpoS RNA.