Catabolite repression in Bacillus subtilis: a global regulatory mechanism for the gram-positive bacteria?

Mol Microbiol. 1995 Feb;15(3):395-401. doi: 10.1111/j.1365-2958.1995.tb02252.x.


Three components involved in catabolite repression (CR) of gene expression in Bacillus have been identified. The cis-acting catabolite responsive element (CRE), which is present in many genes encoding carbon catabolic enzymes in various species of the Gram-positive bacteria, mediates CR of several genes in Bacillus subtilis, Bacillus megaterium, and Staphylococcus xylosus. CR of most genes regulated via CRE is also affected by the trans-acting factors CcpA and HPr. Similarities between CcpA and Lac and Gal repressors suggest binding of CcpA to CRE. HPr, a component of the phosphoenolpyruvate:sugar phosphotransferase system, undergoes regulatory phosphorylation at a serine residue by a fructose-1,6-diphosphate-activated kinase. A mutant of HPr, which is not phosphorylatable at this position because of an exchange of serine to alanine, lacks CR of several catabolic activities. This mutant phenotype is similar to the one exhibited by a ccpA mutant. Direct protein-protein interaction between CcpA and HPr(Ser-P) was recently demonstrated and constitutes a link between metabolic activity and CR.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Amino Acid Sequence
  • Amylases / genetics
  • Amylases / physiology
  • Bacillus subtilis / genetics*
  • Bacillus subtilis / metabolism
  • Bacterial Proteins / genetics
  • Bacterial Proteins / physiology
  • Base Sequence
  • DNA-Binding Proteins / genetics
  • DNA-Binding Proteins / physiology
  • Gene Expression Regulation*
  • Gram-Positive Bacteria / genetics*
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Phosphoenolpyruvate Sugar Phosphotransferase System / genetics
  • Phosphoenolpyruvate Sugar Phosphotransferase System / physiology
  • Phosphorylation
  • Protein Processing, Post-Translational
  • Regulatory Sequences, Nucleic Acid
  • Repressor Proteins / genetics
  • Repressor Proteins / physiology
  • Signal Transduction


  • Bacterial Proteins
  • DNA-Binding Proteins
  • Repressor Proteins
  • catabolite control proteins, bacteria
  • Phosphoenolpyruvate Sugar Phosphotransferase System
  • phosphocarrier protein HPr
  • Amylases