AmrZ is a major determinant of c-di-GMP levels in Pseudomonas fluorescens F113.

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The transcriptional regulator AmrZ is a global regulatory protein conserved within the pseudomonads. AmrZ can act both as a positive and a negative regulator of gene expression, controlling many genes implicated in environmental adaption. Regulated traits include motility, iron homeostasis, exopolysaccharides production and the ability to form biofilms. In Pseudomonas fluorescens F113, an amrZ mutant presents a pleiotropic phenotype, showing increased swimming motility, decreased biofilm formation and very limited ability for competitive colonization of rhizosphere, its natural habitat. It also shows different colony morphology and binding of the dye Congo Red. The amrZ mutant presents severely reduced levels of the messenger molecule cyclic-di-GMP (c-di-GMP), which is consistent with the motility and biofilm formation phenotypes. Most of the genes encoding proteins with diguanylate cyclase (DGCs) or phosphodiesterase (PDEs) domains, implicated in c-di-GMP turnover in this bacterium, appear to be regulated by AmrZ. Phenotypic analysis of eight mutants in genes shown to be directly regulated by AmrZ and encoding c-di-GMP related enzymes, showed that seven of them were altered in motility and/or biofilm formation. The results presented here show that in P. fluorescens, AmrZ determines c-di-GMP levels through the regulation of a complex network of genes encoding DGCs and PDEs.