DataSheet_4_Uncovering Transcriptional Regulators and Targets of sRNAs Using an Integrative Data-Mining Approach: H-NS-Regulated RseX as a Case Study.xlsx (26.54 kB)
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DataSheet_4_Uncovering Transcriptional Regulators and Targets of sRNAs Using an Integrative Data-Mining Approach: H-NS-Regulated RseX as a Case Study.xlsx

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posted on 13.07.2021, 04:24 by Mia K. Mihailovic, Alyssa M. Ekdahl, Angela Chen, Abigail N. Leistra, Bridget Li, Javier González Martínez, Matthew Law, Cindy Ejindu, Éric Massé, Peter L. Freddolino, Lydia M. Contreras

Bacterial small RNAs (sRNAs) play a vital role in pathogenesis by enabling rapid, efficient networks of gene attenuation during infection. In recent decades, there has been a surge in the number of proposed and biochemically-confirmed sRNAs in both Gram-positive and Gram-negative pathogens. However, limited homology, network complexity, and condition specificity of sRNA has stunted complete characterization of the activity and regulation of these RNA regulators. To streamline the discovery of the expression of sRNAs, and their post-transcriptional activities, we propose an integrative in vivo data-mining approach that couples DNA protein occupancy, RNA-seq, and RNA accessibility data with motif identification and target prediction algorithms. We benchmark the approach against a subset of well-characterized E. coli sRNAs for which a degree of in vivo transcriptional regulation and post-transcriptional activity has been previously reported, finding support for known regulation in a large proportion of this sRNA set. We showcase the abilities of our method to expand understanding of sRNA RseX, a known envelope stress-linked sRNA for which a cellular role has been elusive due to a lack of native expression detection. Using the presented approach, we identify a small set of putative RseX regulators and targets for experimental investigation. These findings have allowed us to confirm native RseX expression under conditions that eliminate H-NS repression as well as uncover a post-transcriptional role of RseX in fimbrial regulation. Beyond RseX, we uncover 163 putative regulatory DNA-binding protein sites, corresponding to regulation of 62 sRNAs, that could lead to new understanding of sRNA transcription regulation. For 32 sRNAs, we also propose a subset of top targets filtered by engagement of regions that exhibit binding site accessibility behavior in vivo. We broadly anticipate that the proposed approach will be useful for sRNA-reliant network characterization in bacteria. Such investigations under pathogenesis-relevant environmental conditions will enable us to deduce complex rapid-regulation schemes that support infection.

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