Whole-genome transcription profiling reveals genes up-regulated by growth on fucose in the human gut bacterium "Roseburia inulinivorans"

Karen Patricia Scott, Jennifer Cynthia Martin, Gillian Patricia Campbell, Claus-Dieter Mayer, Harry James Flint

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

200 Citations (Scopus)


"Roseburia inulinivorans" is an anaerobic polysaccharide-utilizing firmicute bacterium from the human colon that was identified as a producer of butyric acid during growth on glucose, starch, or inulin. R. inulinivorans A2-194 is also able to grow on the host-derived sugar fucose, following a lag period, producing propionate and propanol as additional fermentation products. A shotgun genomic microarray was constructed and used to investigate the switch in gene expression that is involved in changing from glucose to fucose utilization. This revealed a set of genes coding for fucose utilization, propanediol utilization, and the formation of propionate and propanol that are up-regulated during growth on fucose. These include homologues of genes that are implicated in polyhedral body formation in Salmonella enterica. Dehydration of the intermediate 1,2-propanediol involves an enzyme belonging to the new B-12-independent glycerol dehydratase family, in contrast to S. enterica, which relies on a B-12-dependent enzyme. A typical gram-positive agr-type quorum-sensing system was also up-regulated in R. inulinivorans during growth on fucose. Despite the lack of genome sequence information for this commensal bacterium, microarray analysis has provided a powerful tool for obtaining new information on its metabolic capabilities.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)4340-4349
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Bacteriology
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2006


  • Butyrate-producing bacteria
  • 16s ribosomal RNA
  • Serovar typhimurium LT2
  • human colonic bacteria
  • Staphylococcus aureus
  • human feces
  • Oligonucleotide probes
  • Salmonella typhimurium
  • clostridium butyricum
  • Escherichia coli


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