Transcriptional regulation of the mannan utilization genes in the alkaliphilicBacillussp. N16-5

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Bacillus sp. N16-5 is an alkaliphile with a great ability to utilize mannan. Its mannan utilization gene cluster has been identified in a previous study. The ManR protein encoded by the cluster was predicted to be a LacI family regulator, and the transcription level of the mannan utilization gene cluster was upregulated after the manR gene was deleted, indicating that ManR is the repressor of this cluster. The transcription of the related genes was downregulated when manH, encoding the extracellular substrate-binding domain of the manno-oligosaccharide transporter, was deleted. Furthermore, isothermal titration calorimetry revealed that mannotetraose and mannopentose are ligands of ManR. These results all corroborate the hypothesis that the mannan utilization gene cluster is repressed by the transcription regulator ManR, and that the repression is removed when it binds to manno-oligosaccharides, which are generated by mannan degradation and transported into the cell by a specific transporter.

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