RecA protein plays a role in the chemotactic response and chemoreceptor clustering of Salmonella enterica

PLoS One. 2014 Aug 22;9(8):e105578. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0105578. eCollection 2014.


The RecA protein is the main bacterial recombinase and the activator of the SOS system. In Escherichia coli and Salmonella enterica sv. Typhimurium, RecA is also essential for swarming, a flagellar-driven surface translocation mechanism widespread among bacteria. In this work, the direct interaction between RecA and the CheW coupling protein was confirmed, and the motility and chemotactic phenotype of a S. Typhimurium ΔrecA mutant was characterized through microfluidics, optical trapping, and quantitative capillary assays. The results demonstrate the tight association of RecA with the chemotaxis pathway and also its involvement in polar chemoreceptor cluster formation. RecA is therefore necessary for standard flagellar rotation switching, implying its essential role not only in swarming motility but also in the normal chemotactic response of S. Typhimurium.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

MeSH terms

  • Bacterial Proteins / genetics
  • Bacterial Proteins / metabolism*
  • Chemotaxis / genetics
  • Chemotaxis / immunology*
  • Flagella / genetics
  • Flagella / metabolism
  • Gene Deletion
  • Mutation
  • Protein Binding
  • Rec A Recombinases / genetics
  • Rec A Recombinases / metabolism*
  • Salmonella enterica / genetics
  • Salmonella enterica / immunology*
  • Salmonella enterica / metabolism*
  • Salmonella typhimurium / genetics
  • Salmonella typhimurium / immunology
  • Salmonella typhimurium / metabolism


  • Bacterial Proteins
  • CheW protein, Bacteria
  • Rec A Recombinases