The novel NhaE-type Na(+)/H (+) antiporter of the pathogenic bacterium Neisseria meningitidis

Pedro M F Sousa, Marco A M Videira, Thomas Vorburger, Sara T N Silva, James W Moir, Julia Steuber, Ana M P Melo

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Neisseria meningitidis is a pathogenic bacterium responsible for meningitis. The mechanisms underlying the control of Na(+) transmembrane movement, presumably important to pathogenicity, have been barely addressed. To elucidate the function of the components of the Na(+) transport system in N. meningitidis, an open reading frame from the genome of this bacterium displaying similarity with the NhaE type of Na(+)/H(+) antiporters was expressed in Escherichia coli and characterized for sodium transport ability. The N. meningitidis antiporter (NmNhaE) was able to complement an E. coli strain devoid of Na(+)/H(+) antiporters (KNabc) respecting the ability to grow in the presence of NaCl and LiCl. Ion transport assays in everted vesicles prepared from KNabc expressing NmNhaE from a plasmid confirmed its ability to translocate Na(+) and Li(+). Here is presented the characterization of the first NhaE from a pathogen, an important contribution to the comprehension of sodium ion metabolism in this kind of microorganisms.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)211-217
Number of pages7
JournalArchives of microbiology
Issue number3
Early online date4 Dec 2012
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2013


  • Amino Acid Sequence
  • Escherichia coli
  • Hydrogen-Ion Concentration
  • Lithium Chloride
  • Neisseria meningitidis
  • Plasmids
  • Sodium Chloride
  • Sodium-Hydrogen Antiporter

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