We isolated an iron-uptake mutant of Neisseria meningitidis M986-NCV-1 that was severely limited in the ability to use several sources of iron in the form of Fe3+. This mutant, FAM11, grew poorly or not at all with human transferrin (TF) or lactoferrin (LF) as the sole iron source in a defined medium but grew as well as wild-type meningococci with hemin or hemoglobin. Uptake of 55Fe bound to TF, LF, dicitrate complexes, aerobactin, or nitrilotriacetate was reduced to 0 to 4% of the wild-type level. FAM11 did not produce an iron-repressible outer membrane protein (FeRP) of 70 kilodaltons (kDa) found in membranes of iron-stressed M986-NCV-1. Western blot (immunoblot) analysis using rabbit antiserum against this protein revealed that at least 17 of 18 meningococcal and 10 of 14 gonococcal strains produced an FeRP of ca. 70 kDa. The 70-kDa FeRP was shown to be surface exposed by radioimmunoprecipitation with human immune sera. These data suggest that the 70-kDa FeRP is somehow involved in Fe uptake from TF and LF. However, we were unable to transform the iron-uptake phenotype from FAM11 into wild-type menigococci to confirm this. Revertants of FAM11 that grew with TF and LF did not regain the ability to make the 70-kDa FeRP but also did not completely regain the Fe-uptake phenotype of M986-NCV-1.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Number of pages||7|
|Journal||Infection and Immunity|
|State||Published - Jan 1 1988|
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Infectious Diseases