PloS one

Analysis of Spo0M function in Bacillus subtilis.

PMID 28234965


Spo0M has been previously reported as a regulator of sporulation in Bacillus subtilis; however, little is known about the mechanisms through which it participates in sporulation, and there is no information to date that relates this protein to other processes in the bacterium. In this work we present evidence from proteomic, protein-protein interaction, morphological, subcellular localization microscopy and bioinformatics studies which indicate that Spo0M function is not necessarily restricted to sporulation, and point towards its involvement in other stages of the vegetative life cycle. In the current study, we provide evidence that Spo0M interacts with cytoskeletal proteins involved in cell division, which suggest a function additional to that previously described in sporulation. Spo0M expression is not restricted to the transition phase or sporulation; rather, its expression begins during the early stages of growth and Spo0M localization in B. subtilis depends on the bacterial life cycle and could be related to an additional proposed function. This is supported by our discovery of homologs in a broad distribution of bacterial genera, even in non-sporulating species. Our work paves the way for re-evaluation of the role of Spo0M in bacterial cell.