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Open Access Highly Accessed Research article

Comparative genomic analysis of two-component regulatory proteins in Pseudomonas syringae

José L Lavín1, Kristoffer Kiil2, Ohiana Resano1, David W Ussery2 and José A Oguiza1*

Author affiliations

1 Departamento de Producción Agraria, Universidad Pública de Navarra, 31006 Pamplona, Spain

2 Center for Biological Sequence Analysis, Biocentrum-DTU, The Technical University of Denmark, DK-2800 Lyngby, Denmark

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Citation and License

BMC Genomics 2007, 8:397  doi:10.1186/1471-2164-8-397

Published: 31 October 2007



Pseudomonas syringae is a widespread bacterial plant pathogen, and strains of P. syringae may be assigned to different pathovars based on host specificity among different plant species. The genomes of P. syringae pv. syringae (Psy) B728a, pv. tomato (Pto) DC3000 and pv. phaseolicola (Pph) 1448A have been recently sequenced providing a major resource for comparative genomic analysis. A mechanism commonly found in bacteria for signal transduction is the two-component system (TCS), which typically consists of a sensor histidine kinase (HK) and a response regulator (RR). P. syringae requires a complex array of TCS proteins to cope with diverse plant hosts, host responses, and environmental conditions.


Based on the genomic data, pattern searches with Hidden Markov Model (HMM) profiles have been used to identify putative HKs and RRs. The genomes of Psy B728a, Pto DC3000 and Pph 1448A were found to contain a large number of genes encoding TCS proteins, and a core of complete TCS proteins were shared between these genomes: 30 putative TCS clusters, 11 orphan HKs, 33 orphan RRs, and 16 hybrid HKs. A close analysis of the distribution of genes encoding TCS proteins revealed important differences in TCS proteins among the three P. syringae pathovars.


In this article we present a thorough analysis of the identification and distribution of TCS proteins among the sequenced genomes of P. syringae. We have identified differences in TCS proteins among the three P. syringae pathovars that may contribute to their diverse host ranges and association with plant hosts. The identification and analysis of the repertoire of TCS proteins in the genomes of P. syringae pathovars constitute a basis for future functional genomic studies of the signal transduction pathways in this important bacterial phytopathogen.