Inactivation of fructose-1,6-bisphosphate aldolase prevents optimal co-catabolism of glycolytic and gluconeogenic carbon substrates in Mycobacterium tuberculosis

PLoS Pathogens
Susan PuckettSabine Ehrt

Abstract

Metabolic pathways used by Mycobacterium tuberculosis (Mtb) to establish and maintain infections are important for our understanding of pathogenesis and the development of new chemotherapies. To investigate the role of fructose-1,6-bisphosphate aldolase (FBA), we engineered an Mtb strain in which FBA levels were regulated by anhydrotetracycline. Depletion of FBA resulted in clearance of Mtb in both the acute and chronic phases of infection in vivo, and loss of viability in vitro when cultured on single carbon sources. Consistent with prior reports of Mtb's ability to co-catabolize multiple carbon sources, this in vitro essentiality could be overcome when cultured on mixtures of glycolytic and gluconeogenic carbon sources, enabling generation of an fba knockout (Δfba). In vitro studies of Δfba however revealed that lack of FBA could only be compensated for by a specific balance of glucose and butyrate in which growth and metabolism of butyrate were determined by Mtb's ability to co-catabolize glucose. These data thus not only evaluate FBA as a potential drug target in both replicating and persistent Mtb, but also expand our understanding of the multiplicity of in vitro conditions that define the essentiality of Mtb's FBA in vivo.

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Related Concepts

Metabolic Process, Cellular
Buffers
Hygromycin A
In Vivo
Pathogenic Aspects
Biochemical Pathway
Amidophosphoribosyltransferase
Doxycycline
Dihydroxyacetone Phosphate
Pathogenesis

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