Haem-iron plays a key role in the regulation of the Ess/Type VII secretion system of Staphylococcus aureus RN6390

M. Guillermina Casabona, Holger Kneuper, Daniela Alferes de Lima, Catriona P. Harkins, Martin Zoltner, Erik Hjerde, Matthew T. G. Holden, Tracy Palmer (Lead / Corresponding author)

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)
202 Downloads (Pure)


The Staphylococcus aureus Type VII protein secretion system (T7SS) plays important roles in virulence and intra-species competition. Here we show that the T7SS in strain RN6390 is activated by supplementing the growth medium with hemoglobin, and its cofactor hemin (heme B). Transcript analysis and secretion assays suggest that activation by hemin occurs at a transcriptional and a post-translational level. Loss of T7 secretion activity by deletion of essC results in upregulation of genes required for iron acquisition. Taken together these findings suggest that the T7SS plays a role in iron homeostasis in at least some S. aureus strains.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1839-1850
Number of pages12
Issue number12
Early online date24 Nov 2017
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2017


  • Staphylococcus aureus
  • Protein secretion
  • Iron homeostasis
  • RNA-seq

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