Niche adaptation by expansion and reprogramming of general transcription factors

TitleNiche adaptation by expansion and reprogramming of general transcription factors
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2011
AuthorsTurkarslan S, Reiss DJ, Gibbins G, Su WL, Pan M, Bare JC, Plaisier CL, Baliga NS
JournalMolecular systems biology
AbstractNumerous lineage-specific expansions of the transcription factor B (TFB) family in archaea suggests an important role for expanded TFBs in encoding environment-specific gene regulatory programs. Given the characteristics of hypersaline lakes, the unusually large numbers of TFBs in halophilic archaea further suggests that they might be especially important in rapid adaptation to the challenges of a dynamically changing environment. Motivated by these observations, we have investigated the implications of TFB expansions by correlating sequence variations, regulation, and physical interactions of all seven TFBs in Halobacterium salinarum NRC-1 to their fitness landscapes, functional hierarchies, and genetic interactions across 2488 experiments covering combinatorial variations in salt, pH, temperature, and Cu stress. This systems analysis has revealed an elegant scheme in which completely novel fitness landscapes are generated by gene conversion events that introduce subtle changes to the regulation or physical interactions of duplicated TFBs. Based on these insights, we have introduced a synthetically redesigned TFB and altered the regulation of existing TFBs to illustrate how archaea can rapidly generate novel phenotypes by simply reprogramming their TFB regulatory network.
Short TitleMol Syst Biol
Alternate JournalMol Syst Biol