Recently, there has been an explosion of research activities in the cyclic dinucleotides field. Cyclic dinucleotides, such as c-di-GMP and c-di-AMP, have been shown to regulate bacterial virulence and biofilm formation. c-di-GMP can exist in different aggregate forms, and it has been demonstrated that the polymorphism of c-di-GMP is influenced by the nature of cation that is present in solution. In previous work, polymorphism of c-di-GMP could only be demonstrated at hundreds of micromolar concentrations of the dinucleotide, and it has been a matter of debate if polymorphism of c-di-GMP exists under in vivo conditions. In this Article, we demonstrate that c-di-GMP can form G-quadruplexes at low micromolar concentrations when aromatic molecules such as thiazole orange template the quadruplex formation. We then use this property of aromatic molecule-induced G-quadruplex formation of c-di-GMP to design a thiazole orange-based fluorescent detection of this important signaling molecule. We determine, using this thiazole orange assay on a crude bacterial cell lysate, that WspR D70E (a constitutively activated diguanylate cyclase) is functional in vivo when overexpressed in E. Coli . The intracellular concentration of c-di-GMP in an E. Coli cell that is overexpressed with WspR D70E is very high and can reach 2.92 mM.
© 2011 American Chemical Society