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© Perrine Bomme, Guillaume Duménil, Jean-Marc Panaud.
Coloured scanning electron micrograph (SEM) of Neisseria meningitidis on epithelial cells
Publication : PLoS pathogens

A novel metal transporter mediating manganese export (MntX) regulates the Mn to Fe intracellular ratio and Neisseria meningitidis virulence

Scientific Fields
Diseases
Organisms
Applications
Technique

Published in PLoS pathogens - 29 Sep 2011

Veyrier FJ, Boneca IG, Cellier MF, Taha MK

Link to Pubmed [PMID] – 21980287

PLoS Pathog. 2011 Sep;7(9):e1002261

Neisseria meningitidis (Nm) and N. gonorrhoeae (Ng) are adapted to different environments within their human host. If the basis of this difference has not yet been fully understood, previous studies (including our own data) have reported that, unlike Ng, Nm tolerates high manganese concentrations. As transition metals are essential regulators of cell growth and host pathogen interactions, we aimed to address mechanisms of Nm Mn²⁺ tolerance and its pathogenic consequences. Using bioinformatics, gene deletion and heterologous expression we identified a conserved bacterial manganese resistance factor MntX (formerly YebN). The predicted structure suggests that MntX represents a new family of transporters exporting Mn. In the Neisseria genus, this exporter is present and functional in all Nm isolates but it is mutated in a majority of Ng strains and commonly absent in nonpathogenic species. In Nm, Mn²⁺ export via MntX regulates the intracellular Mn/Fe ratio and protects against manganese toxicity that is exacerbated in low iron conditions. MntX is also important for N. meningitidis to resist killing by human serum and for survival in mice blood during septicemia. The present work thus points to new clues about Mn homeostasis, its interplay with Fe metabolism and the influence on N. meningitidis physiology and pathogenicity.

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21980287