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46th World Congress on Microbiology

Dublin, Ireland

Petra Dersch

Petra Dersch

Helmholtz Centre for Infection Research, Germany

Title: Global reprogramming of the Yersinia pseudotuberculosis transcriptional landscape in response to host signals


Biography: Petra Dersch


Yersinia pseudotuberculosis evolved numerous strategies to survive in environmental reservoirs and mammalian hosts. A hallmark is the ability to rapidly adjust the lifestyle upon host entry to prevent attacks by the host immune systems. The pathogen employs a plethora of control elements to fine-tune regulatory networks. To capture the range, magnitude and complexity of the underlying control mechanisms, we used comparative RNA-seq-based transcriptomic profiling under infection-relevant conditions in vitro and during the infection process in mice. We identified riboswitch-like RNA elements, a set of antisense RNAs, and previously unrecognized trans-acting RNAs, which are differentially regulated under infection conditions. We revealed a temperature- and host-induced repro­gramming of important metabolic pathways, virulence traits, and discovered CRP as master regulator of non-coding RNAs. Individual regulatory RNAs, which are differentially regulated during infection, were characterized and their role in infection was elucidated using mouse infection models. Among the regulatory RNAs, which are most important for Yersinia virulence, are the Crp-dependent Csr-type regulatory RNAs found to control multiple virulence-relevant metabolic pro­cesses. Our finding highlights a novel level of complexity in which the concerted action of transcriptional regulators and non-coding RNAs adjusts the control of Yersinia fitness and virulence to the requirements of their virulent lifestyle.

Recent Publications

  1. Nuss AM, Beckstette M, Pimenova M, Schmühl C, Opitz W, Pisano F, Heroven AK, Dersch P (2017) Tissue dual RNA-seq allows fast discovery of infection-specific functions and riboregulators shaping host-pathogen transcriptomes. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA. 114(5):E791-E800.
  2. Nuss AM, Schuster F, Roselius L, Klein J, Bücker R, Herbst K, Heroven AK, Pisano F, Wittmann C, Münch R, Müller J, Jahn D, Dersch P (2016) A precise temperature-responsive Bistable Switch controlling Yersinia  virulence. PLoS Pathog. 2016; 12(8):e 1006091.
  3. Wang H, Avican K, Fahlgren A, Erttmann SF, Nuss AM, Dersch P, Fallman M, Edgren T, Wolf-Watz H (2016) Increased plasmid copy number is essential for Yersinia T3SS function and virulence. Science. 353(6298):492-5.
  4. Righetti F, Nuss AM, Twittenhoff C, Beele S, Urban K, Will S, Bernhart SH, Stadler PF, Dersch P, Narberhaus F (2016) Temperature-responsive in vitro RNA structurome of Yersinia pseudotuberculosis. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA. 113(26):7237-42.
  5. Nuss AM, Heroven AK, Waldmann B, Reinkensmeier J, Jarek M, Beckstette M, Dersch P (2015) Transcriptomic profiling of Yersinia pseudotuberculosis reveals reprogramming of the Crp regulon by temperature and uncovers Crp as a master regulator of small RNAs. Plos Genet. 2015; 11(3):e1005087.