The CTX-M-14 plasmid pHK01 encodes novel small RNAs and influences host growth and motility

Xinlei Jiang, Xuan Liu, Carmen O K Law, Ya Wang, Wai U Lo, Xing Weng, Ting Fung Chan, P L Ho, Terrence C K Lau

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11 Citations (SciVal)


The dissemination of extended-spectrum β-lactamases (ESBLs) genes among bacteria is commonly achieved by plasmid conjugation. In the last decade, the CTX-M type enzyme was the most widespread and prevalent ESBLs in the world. In Hong Kong and mainland China, among the commonly found CTX-M-carrying plasmids were pHK01 and pHK01-like plasmids, which belong to incompatibility group FII (IncFII). In this work, we studied the physiological effect caused by the pHK01 plasmid in bacterial host Escherichia coli J53. The plasmid did not affect cell growth of the host but reduced their motility. The reduction of host motility was attributed to downregulation of genes that encode the flagellar system. We also identified several plasmid-encoded sRNAs, and showed that the overexpression of one of them, AS-traI, in the presence of pHK01 plasmid shortened the lag phase of host growth. In addition to the study of pHK01 in bacteria, we also developed a fast and incompatibility group-specific curing method using countertranscribed RNA, which could be of general usage for studying plasmid-host interaction in clinical aspects.

Original languageEnglish
JournalFEMS Microbiology Ecology
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jul 2017

Bibliographical note

© FEMS 2017. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail: [email protected].


  • Base Sequence
  • China
  • Drug Resistance, Multiple, Bacterial/genetics
  • Escherichia coli/drug effects
  • Escherichia coli Infections/microbiology
  • Escherichia coli Proteins/genetics
  • Hong Kong
  • Humans
  • Microbial Sensitivity Tests
  • Plasmids/genetics
  • RNA, Bacterial/genetics
  • beta-Lactamases/genetics


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