The DNA Translocase of Mycobacteria Is an Essential Protein Required for Growth and Division
Faculty AdvisorChristopher Sassetti
Academic ProgramImmunology and Microbiology
UMass Chan AffiliationsMicrobiology and Physiological Systems
Document TypeMaster's Thesis
bacterial cell division
Organismal Biological Physiology
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AbstractMycobacterium tuberculosis (Mtb) is one of the most virulent and prevalent bacterial pathogens across the world. As Mtb infects millions of people a year, it remains essential to study its physiology with the goal of developing new therapeutic interventions. A critical part of the bacteria’s ability to propagate is through successful cell division. Although the process of bacterial cell division and the key proteins therein are well understood in Escherichia coli, much remains to be understood about division in mycobacteria. Genetic and cell biological approaches have recently begun to identify key divisome components in Mycobacterium smegmatis. However, questions remain regarding the role and function of one divisome protein in particular, the DNA translocase FtsK. In this dissertation, I investigated the necessity of FtsK for the growth of mycobacteria. Using an inducible knockdown of FtsK, I present evidence that complete loss of FtsK is required to inhibit growth in both Mtb and M. smegmatis, and that these orthologs share a homologous function. Additional work suggests extended loss of FtsK may be lethal to bacteria. These observations support that FtsK is an essential member of the divisome in mycobacteria, facilitating the processes of growth and division.
Permanent Link to this Itemhttp://hdl.handle.net/20.500.14038/31383
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