Isolation, characterization, and nucleotide sequence of the Streptococcus mutans mannitol-phosphate dehydrogenase gene and the mannitol-specific factor III gene of the phosphoenolpyruvate phosphotransferase system. Academic Article uri icon


  • Streptococcus mutans, the causative agent of dental caries, utilizes carbohydrates by means of the phosphoenolpyruvate-dependent phosphotransferase system (PTS). The PTS facilitates vectorial translocation of metabolizable carbohydrates to form the corresponding sugar-phosphates, which are subsequently converted to glycolytic intermediates. The PTS consists of both sugar-specific and sugar-independent components. Complementation of an Escherichia coli mtlD mutation with a streptococcal recombinant DNA library allowed isolation of the mannitol-1-phosphate dehydrogenase gene (mtlD) and the adjacent sugar-specific mannitol factor III gene (mtlF) from S. mutans. Subsequent transposon mutagenesis of the complementing DNA fragment with Tn5seq1 defined the region that encodes the mtlD-complementing activity, the streptococcal mtlD gene. Nucleotide sequence analysis of this region revealed two complete open reading frames (ORFs) from within the streptococcal mannitol PTS operon. One ORF encodes the mtlD gene product, a 43.0-kDa protein which exhibits similarity to the E. coli and Enterococcus faecalis mannitol-1-phosphate dehydrogenases. The second ORF encodes a 15.8-kDa protein which exhibits similarity to mannitol factor III proteins from several bacterial species. In vitro transcription-translation assays were used to produce proteins of the sizes predicted by the streptococcal ORFs. These data indicate that the S. mutans mannitol PTS utilizes an enzyme II-factor III complex similar to the mannitol system found in other gram-positive organisms, as opposed to that of E. coli, which utilizes an independent enzyme II system.

published proceedings

  • Infect Immun

author list (cited authors)

  • Honeyman, A. L., & Curtiss, R

citation count

  • 31

complete list of authors

  • Honeyman, AL||Curtiss, R

publication date

  • August 1992