The heptapeptide-nucleotide microcin C (McC) is a potent inhibitor of enteric bacteria growth. McC is excreted from producing cells by the MccC transporter. The residual McC that remainsin the producing cell can be processed by cellular amino-peptidases with the release of a non-hydrolyzable aspartyl-adenylate, a strong inhibitor of aspartyl-tRNA synthetase. Accumulation of processed McC inside producing cells should therefore lead to translation inhibition and cessation of growth. Here, we show that a product of another gene of the McC biosynthetic cluster, mccE, acetylates processed McC and converts it into a non-toxic compound. MccE also makes Escherichia coli resistant to albomycin, a Trojan horse inhibitor unrelated to McC that, upon processing, gives rise to a serine coupled to a thioxylofuranosyl pyrimidine, an inhibitor of seryl-tRNA synthetase. We speculate that MccE and related cellular acetyl-transferases of the Rim family may detoxify various aminoacyl- nucleotides, either exogenous or those generated inside the cell.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Molecular Biology
- Cell Biology