The morphogenetic protein CotE positions exosporium proteins CotY and ExsY during sporulation of Bacillus cereus - INRAE - Institut national de recherche pour l’agriculture, l’alimentation et l’environnement Access content directly
Journal Articles MSphere Year : 2021

The morphogenetic protein CotE positions exosporium proteins CotY and ExsY during sporulation of Bacillus cereus


The exosporium is the outermost spore layer of some Bacillus and Clostridium species and related organisms. It mediates the interactions of spores with their environment, modulates spore adhesion and germination, and has been implicated in pathogenesis. In Bacillus cereus , the exosporium consists of a crystalline basal layer, formed mainly by the two cysteine-rich proteins CotY and ExsY, surrounded by a hairy nap composed of glycoproteins. The morphogenetic protein CotE is necessary for the integrity of the B. cereus exosporium, but how CotE directs exosporium assembly remains unknown. Here, we used super-resolution fluorescence microscopy to follow the localization of SNAP-tagged CotE, CotY, and ExsY during B. cereus sporulation and evidenced the interdependencies among these proteins. Complexes of CotE, CotY, and ExsY are present at all sporulation stages, and the three proteins follow similar localization patterns during endospore formation that are reminiscent of the localization pattern of Bacillus subtilis CotE. We show that B. cereus CotE guides the formation of one cap at both forespore poles by positioning CotY and then guides forespore encasement by ExsY, thereby promoting exosporium elongation. By these two actions, CotE ensures the formation of a complete exosporium. Importantly, we demonstrate that the assembly of the exosporium is not a unidirectional process, as previously proposed, but occurs through the formation of two caps, as observed during B. subtilis coat morphogenesis, suggesting that a general principle governs the assembly of the spore surface layers of Bacillaceae . IMPORTANCE Spores of Bacillaceae are enveloped in an outermost glycoprotein layer. In the B. cereus group, encompassing the Bacillus anthracis and B. cereus pathogens, this layer is easily recognizable by a characteristic balloon-like appearance and separation from the underlying coat by an interspace. In spite of its importance for the environmental interactions of spores, including those with host cells, the mechanism of assembly of the exosporium is poorly understood. We used super-resolution fluorescence microscopy to directly visualize the formation of the exosporium during the sporulation of B. cereus , and we studied the localization and interdependencies of proteins essential for exosporium morphogenesis. We discovered that these proteins form a morphogenetic scaffold before a complete exosporium or coat is detectable. We describe how the different proteins localize to the scaffold and how they subsequently assemble around the spore, and we present a model for the assembly of the exosporium.
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hal-03210873 , version 1 (28-04-2021)




Armand Lablaine, Mònica Serrano, Christelle Bressuire-Isoard, Stéphanie Chamot, Isabelle Bornard, et al.. The morphogenetic protein CotE positions exosporium proteins CotY and ExsY during sporulation of Bacillus cereus. MSphere, 2021, 6 (2), pp.e00007-21. ⟨10.1128/mSphere.00007-21⟩. ⟨hal-03210873⟩
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