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Effects of Kasugamycin on the Translatome of Escherichia coli

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  It is long known that Kasugamycin inhibits translation of canonical transcripts containing a 5’-UTR with a Shine Dalgarno (SD) motif, but not that of leaderless transcripts. To gain a global overview of the influence of Kasugamycin on translation efficiencies, the changes of the translatome of Escherichia coli induced by a 10 minutes Kasugamycin treatment were quantified. The effect of Kasugamycin differed widely, 102 transcripts were at least twofold more sensitive to Kasugamycin than average, and 137 transcripts were at least twofold more resistant, and there was a more than 100-fold difference between the most resistant and the most sensitive transcript.

  The 5’-ends of 19 transcripts were determined from treated and untreated cultures, but Kasugamycin resistance did neither correlate with the presence or absence of a SD motif, nor with differences in 5’-UTR lengths or GC content. RNA Structure Logos were generated for the 102 Kasugamycin-sensitive and for the 137 resistant transcripts. For both groups a short Shine Dalgarno (SD) motif was retrieved, but no specific motifs associated with resistance or sensitivity could be found. Notably, this was also true for the region -3 to -1 upstream of the start codon and the presence of an extended SD motif, which had been proposed to result in Kasugamycin resistance.

  Comparison of the translatome results with the database RegulonDB showed that the transcript with the highest resistance was leaderless, but no further leaderless transcripts were among the resistant transcripts. Unexpectedly, it was found that translational coupling might be a novel feature that is associated with Kasugamycin resistance. Taken together, Kasugamycin has a profound effect on translational efficiencies of E. coli transcripts, but the mechanism of action is different than previously described.