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  • Description: phosphorelay regulator, initiation of sporulation

Gene name spo0A
Synonyms spo0C, spo0G, spoIIL, sof-1
Essential no
Product phosphorelay response regulator
Function initiation of sporulation
Interactions involving this protein in SubtInteract: Spo0A
Metabolic function and regulation of this protein in SubtiPathways:
Biofilm, Nucleotides (regulation), Ammonium/ glutamate,
Central C-metabolism,Sugar catabolism, Phosphorelay, Stress,
tRNA charging,Lipid synthesis, Protein secretion
MW, pI 29 kDa, 5.989
Gene length, protein length 801 bp, 267 aa
Immediate neighbours yqiG, spoIVB
Get the DNA and protein sequences
(Barbe et al., 2009)
Genetic context
Spo0A context.gif
This image was kindly provided by SubtiList

Categories containing this gene/protein

transcription factors and their control, phosphorelay, phosphoproteins

This gene is a member of the following regulons

SigH regulon, Spo0A regulon

The Spo0A regulon

The gene

Basic information

  • Locus tag: BSU24220

Phenotypes of a mutant

Database entries

  • DBTBS entry: [1]
  • SubtiList entry: [2]

Additional information

The protein

Basic information/ Evolution

  • Catalyzed reaction/ biological activity:
  • Protein family:
  • Paralogous protein(s):

Extended information on the protein

  • Kinetic information:
  • Domains:
  • Modification: receives phosphorylation from Spo0B, dephosphorylation by Spo0E, direct phosphorylation by KinC upon potassium leakage PubMed
  • Cofactor(s):
  • Effectors of protein activity:
    • the phosphorylation state affects DNA binding activity
    • interaction with MecA inhibits the transcriptional activity of Spo0A∼P PubMed

Database entries

  • Structure: 1QMP (with phosphorylated aspartate, Geobacillus stearothermophilus), 1FC3 (trans-activation domain, Geobacillus stearothermophilus), 1LQ1 (complex with DNA)
  • KEGG entry: [3]
  • E.C. number:

Additional information

Expression and regulation

  • Regulation:
    • repressed under conditions that trigger sporulation (Spo0A) PubMed
    • repressed by casamino acids PubMed
    • repressed by SinR overexpression PubMed
    • repressed by soj PubMed
    • expression increases when drowth rate declines PubMed
  • Regulatory mechanism:
    • Spo0A: transcription repression PubMed
    • Spo0A synthesis is subject to a post-transcriptional control mechanism such that translation of mRNAs originating from the SigA-dependent promoter is impeded due to RNA secondary structure PubMed
  • Additional information:

Biological materials

  • Mutant:
  • Expression vector:
  • lacZ fusion:
  • GFP fusion:
  • two-hybrid system:
  • Antibody:

Labs working on this gene/protein

Your additional remarks



José Eduardo González-Pastor
Cannibalism: a social behavior in sporulating Bacillus subtilis.
FEMS Microbiol Rev: 2011, 35(3);415-24
[PubMed:20955377] [WorldCat.org] [DOI] (I p)

Michiel J L de Hoon, Patrick Eichenberger, Dennis Vitkup
Hierarchical evolution of the bacterial sporulation network.
Curr Biol: 2010, 20(17);R735-45
[PubMed:20833318] [WorldCat.org] [DOI] (I p)

Tsutomu Katayama, Shogo Ozaki, Kenji Keyamura, Kazuyuki Fujimitsu
Regulation of the replication cycle: conserved and diverse regulatory systems for DnaA and oriC.
Nat Rev Microbiol: 2010, 8(3);163-70
[PubMed:20157337] [WorldCat.org] [DOI] (I p)

Daniel López, Roberto Kolter
Extracellular signals that define distinct and coexisting cell fates in Bacillus subtilis.
FEMS Microbiol Rev: 2010, 34(2);134-49
[PubMed:20030732] [WorldCat.org] [DOI] (I p)

Daniel Schultz, Peter G Wolynes, Eshel Ben Jacob, José N Onuchic
Deciding fate in adverse times: sporulation and competence in Bacillus subtilis.
Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A: 2009, 106(50);21027-34
[PubMed:19995980] [WorldCat.org] [DOI] (I p)

S Seredick, G B Spiegelman
Lessons and questions from the structure of the Spo0A activation domain.
Trends Microbiol: 2001, 9(4);148-51
[PubMed:11286862] [WorldCat.org] [DOI] (P p)

The Spo0A regulon

Masaya Fujita, José Eduardo González-Pastor, Richard Losick
High- and low-threshold genes in the Spo0A regulon of Bacillus subtilis.
J Bacteriol: 2005, 187(4);1357-68
[PubMed:15687200] [WorldCat.org] [DOI] (P p)

Virginie Molle, Masaya Fujita, Shane T Jensen, Patrick Eichenberger, José E González-Pastor, Jun S Liu, Richard Losick
The Spo0A regulon of Bacillus subtilis.
Mol Microbiol: 2003, 50(5);1683-701
[PubMed:14651647] [WorldCat.org] [DOI] (P p)

Other original Publications

Additonal publications: PubMed

Shaunak Sen, Jordi Garcia-Ojalvo, Michael B Elowitz
Dynamical consequences of bandpass feedback loops in a bacterial phosphorelay.
PLoS One: 2011, 6(9);e25102
[PubMed:21980382] [WorldCat.org] [DOI] (I p)

Nicolas Mirouze, Peter Prepiak, David Dubnau
Fluctuations in spo0A transcription control rare developmental transitions in Bacillus subtilis.
PLoS Genet: 2011, 7(4);e1002048
[PubMed:21552330] [WorldCat.org] [DOI] (I p)

Claudio Aguilar, Hera Vlamakis, Alejandra Guzman, Richard Losick, Roberto Kolter
KinD is a checkpoint protein linking spore formation to extracellular-matrix production in Bacillus subtilis biofilms.
mBio: 2010, 1(1);
[PubMed:20689749] [WorldCat.org] [DOI] (I e)

Prahathees Eswaramoorthy, Jeffrey Dinh, Daniel Duan, Oleg A Igoshin, Masaya Fujita
Single-cell measurement of the levels and distributions of the phosphorelay components in a population of sporulating Bacillus subtilis cells.
Microbiology (Reading): 2010, 156(Pt 8);2294-2304
[PubMed:20413551] [WorldCat.org] [DOI] (I p)

Arnaud Chastanet, Dennis Vitkup, Guo-Cheng Yuan, Thomas M Norman, Jun S Liu, Richard M Losick
Broadly heterogeneous activation of the master regulator for sporulation in Bacillus subtilis.
Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A: 2010, 107(18);8486-91
[PubMed:20404177] [WorldCat.org] [DOI] (I p)

Imke G de Jong, Jan-Willem Veening, Oscar P Kuipers
Heterochronic phosphorelay gene expression as a source of heterogeneity in Bacillus subtilis spore formation.
J Bacteriol: 2010, 192(8);2053-67
[PubMed:20154131] [WorldCat.org] [DOI] (I p)

Steve D Seredick, Barbara M Seredick, David Baker, George B Spiegelman
An A257V mutation in the bacillus subtilis response regulator Spo0A prevents regulated expression of promoters with low-consensus binding sites.
J Bacteriol: 2009, 191(17);5489-98
[PubMed:19581368] [WorldCat.org] [DOI] (I p)

Virginia Castilla-Llorente, Wilfried J J Meijer, Margarita Salas
Differential Spo0A-mediated effects on transcription and replication of the related Bacillus subtilis phages Nf and phi29 explain their different behaviours in vivo.
Nucleic Acids Res: 2009, 37(15);4955-64
[PubMed:19528067] [WorldCat.org] [DOI] (I p)

Virginia Castilla-Llorente, Margarita Salas, Wilfried J J Meijer
Different responses to Spo0A-mediated suppression of the related Bacillus subtilis phages Nf and phi29.
Environ Microbiol: 2009, 11(5);1137-49
[PubMed:19207565] [WorldCat.org] [DOI] (I p)

Daniel López, Michael A Fischbach, Frances Chu, Richard Losick, Roberto Kolter
Structurally diverse natural products that cause potassium leakage trigger multicellularity in Bacillus subtilis.
Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A: 2009, 106(1);280-5
[PubMed:19114652] [WorldCat.org] [DOI] (I p)

Daniel T Verhamme, Ewan J Murray, Nicola R Stanley-Wall
DegU and Spo0A jointly control transcription of two loci required for complex colony development by Bacillus subtilis.
J Bacteriol: 2009, 191(1);100-8
[PubMed:18978066] [WorldCat.org] [DOI] (I p)

Allison V Banse, Arnaud Chastanet, Lilah Rahn-Lee, Errett C Hobbs, Richard Losick
Parallel pathways of repression and antirepression governing the transition to stationary phase in Bacillus subtilis.
Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A: 2008, 105(40);15547-52
[PubMed:18840696] [WorldCat.org] [DOI] (I p)

Amrita Kumar, Charles P Moran
Promoter activation by repositioning of RNA polymerase.
J Bacteriol: 2008, 190(9);3110-7
[PubMed:18296515] [WorldCat.org] [DOI] (I p)

Steve D Seredick, George B Spiegelman
Bacillus subtilis RNA polymerase recruits the transcription factor Spo0A approximately P to stabilize a closed complex during transcription initiation.
J Mol Biol: 2007, 366(1);19-35
[PubMed:17157871] [WorldCat.org] [DOI] (P p)

Guangnan Chen, Amrita Kumar, Travis H Wyman, Charles P Moran
Spo0A-dependent activation of an extended -10 region promoter in Bacillus subtilis.
J Bacteriol: 2006, 188(4);1411-8
[PubMed:16452424] [WorldCat.org] [DOI] (P p)

Jessica M Silvaggi, John B Perkins, Richard Losick
Genes for small, noncoding RNAs under sporulation control in Bacillus subtilis.
J Bacteriol: 2006, 188(2);532-41
[PubMed:16385044] [WorldCat.org] [DOI] (P p)

Masaya Fujita, Richard Losick
Evidence that entry into sporulation in Bacillus subtilis is governed by a gradual increase in the level and activity of the master regulator Spo0A.
Genes Dev: 2005, 19(18);2236-44
[PubMed:16166384] [WorldCat.org] [DOI] (P p)

Ulrike Mäder, Susanne Hennig, Michael Hecker, Georg Homuth
Transcriptional organization and posttranscriptional regulation of the Bacillus subtilis branched-chain amino acid biosynthesis genes.
J Bacteriol: 2004, 186(8);2240-52
[PubMed:15060025] [WorldCat.org] [DOI] (P p)

Steve D Seredick, George B Spiegelman
The Bacillus subtilis response regulator Spo0A stimulates sigmaA-dependent transcription prior to the major energetic barrier.
J Biol Chem: 2004, 279(17);17397-403
[PubMed:14976210] [WorldCat.org] [DOI] (P p)

Amrita Kumar, James A Brannigan, Charles P Moran
Alpha-helix E of Spo0A is required for sigmaA- but not for sigmaH-dependent promoter activation in Bacillus subtilis.
J Bacteriol: 2004, 186(4);1078-83
[PubMed:14762002] [WorldCat.org] [DOI] (P p)

Steve D Seredick, Barbara M Turner, George B Spiegelman
Assay of transcription modulation by SpoOA of Bacillus subtilis.
Methods Enzymol: 2003, 370;312-23
[PubMed:14712656] [WorldCat.org] [DOI] (P p)

Amrita Kumar, Cindy Buckner Starke, Mark DeZalia, Charles P Moran
Surfaces of Spo0A and RNA polymerase sigma factor A that interact at the spoIIG promoter in Bacillus subtilis.
J Bacteriol: 2004, 186(1);200-6
[PubMed:14679239] [WorldCat.org] [DOI] (P p)

Masaya Fujita, Richard Losick
The master regulator for entry into sporulation in Bacillus subtilis becomes a cell-specific transcription factor after asymmetric division.
Genes Dev: 2003, 17(9);1166-74
[PubMed:12730135] [WorldCat.org] [DOI] (P p)

Shigeo Hosoya, Kei Asai, Naotake Ogasawara, Michio Takeuchi, Tsutomu Sato
Mutation in yaaT leads to significant inhibition of phosphorelay during sporulation in Bacillus subtilis.
J Bacteriol: 2002, 184(20);5545-53
[PubMed:12270811] [WorldCat.org] [DOI] (P p)

Haiyan Zhao, Tarek Msadek, James Zapf, Madhusudan, James A Hoch, Kottayil I Varughese
DNA complexed structure of the key transcription factor initiating development in sporulating bacteria.
Structure: 2002, 10(8);1041-50
[PubMed:12176382] [WorldCat.org] [DOI] (P p)

Sophie J Stephenson, Marta Perego
Interaction surface of the Spo0A response regulator with the Spo0E phosphatase.
Mol Microbiol: 2002, 44(6);1455-67
[PubMed:12067336] [WorldCat.org] [DOI] (P p)

M Perego
A new family of aspartyl phosphate phosphatases targeting the sporulation transcription factor Spo0A of Bacillus subtilis.
Mol Microbiol: 2001, 42(1);133-43
[PubMed:11679073] [WorldCat.org] [DOI] (P p)

C Eymann, G Mittenhuber, M Hecker
The stringent response, sigmaH-dependent gene expression and sporulation in Bacillus subtilis.
Mol Gen Genet: 2001, 264(6);913-23
[PubMed:11254139] [WorldCat.org] [DOI] (P p)

H Nanamiya, K Takahashi, M Fujita, F Kawamura
Deficiency of the initiation events of sporulation in Bacillus subtilis clpP mutant can be suppressed by a lack of the Spo0E protein phosphatase.
Biochem Biophys Res Commun: 2000, 279(1);229-33
[PubMed:11112444] [WorldCat.org] [DOI] (P p)

M Jiang, W Shao, M Perego, J A Hoch
Multiple histidine kinases regulate entry into stationary phase and sporulation in Bacillus subtilis.
Mol Microbiol: 2000, 38(3);535-42
[PubMed:11069677] [WorldCat.org] [DOI] (P p)

P Fawcett, P Eichenberger, R Losick, P Youngman
The transcriptional profile of early to middle sporulation in Bacillus subtilis.
Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A: 2000, 97(14);8063-8
[PubMed:10869437] [WorldCat.org] [DOI] (P p)

J D Quisel, A D Grossman
Control of sporulation gene expression in Bacillus subtilis by the chromosome partitioning proteins Soj (ParA) and Spo0J (ParB).
J Bacteriol: 2000, 182(12);3446-51
[PubMed:10852876] [WorldCat.org] [DOI] (P p)

C M Buckner, C P Moran
A region in Bacillus subtilis sigmaH required for Spo0A-dependent promoter activity.
J Bacteriol: 1998, 180(18);4987-90
[PubMed:9733708] [WorldCat.org] [DOI] (P p)

M A Cervin, R J Lewis, J A Brannigan, G B Spiegelman
The Bacillus subtilis regulator SinR inhibits spoIIG promoter transcription in vitro without displacing RNA polymerase.
Nucleic Acids Res: 1998, 26(16);3806-12
[PubMed:9685500] [WorldCat.org] [DOI] (P p)

C M Buckner, G Schyns, C P Moran
A region in the Bacillus subtilis transcription factor Spo0A that is important for spoIIG promoter activation.
J Bacteriol: 1998, 180(14);3578-83
[PubMed:9658000] [WorldCat.org] [DOI] (P p)

A Khvorova, L Zhang, M L Higgins, P J Piggot
The spoIIE locus is involved in the Spo0A-dependent switch in the location of FtsZ rings in Bacillus subtilis.
J Bacteriol: 1998, 180(5);1256-60
[PubMed:9495766] [WorldCat.org] [DOI] (P p)

C E Grimshaw, S Huang, C G Hanstein, M A Strauch, D Burbulys, L Wang, J A Hoch, J M Whiteley
Synergistic kinetic interactions between components of the phosphorelay controlling sporulation in Bacillus subtilis.
Biochemistry: 1998, 37(5);1365-75
[PubMed:9477965] [WorldCat.org] [DOI] (P p)

G Schyns, C M Buckner, C P Moran
Activation of the Bacillus subtilis spoIIG promoter requires interaction of Spo0A and the sigma subunit of RNA polymerase.
J Bacteriol: 1997, 179(17);5605-8
[PubMed:9287022] [WorldCat.org] [DOI] (P p)

L V Wray, A E Ferson, S H Fisher
Expression of the Bacillus subtilis ureABC operon is controlled by multiple regulatory factors including CodY, GlnR, TnrA, and Spo0H.
J Bacteriol: 1997, 179(17);5494-501
[PubMed:9287005] [WorldCat.org] [DOI] (P p)

M Perego, P Glaser, J A Hoch
Aspartyl-phosphate phosphatases deactivate the response regulator components of the sporulation signal transduction system in Bacillus subtilis.
Mol Microbiol: 1996, 19(6);1151-7
[PubMed:8730857] [WorldCat.org] [DOI] (P p)

P A Levin, R Losick
Transcription factor Spo0A switches the localization of the cell division protein FtsZ from a medial to a bipolar pattern in Bacillus subtilis.
Genes Dev: 1996, 10(4);478-88
[PubMed:8600030] [WorldCat.org] [DOI] (P p)

J Hahn, M Roggiani, D Dubnau
The major role of Spo0A in genetic competence is to downregulate abrB, an essential competence gene.
J Bacteriol: 1995, 177(12);3601-5
[PubMed:7768874] [WorldCat.org] [DOI] (P p)

J K Grimsley, R B Tjalkens, M A Strauch, T H Bird, G B Spiegelman, Z Hostomsky, J M Whiteley, J A Hoch
Subunit composition and domain structure of the Spo0A sporulation transcription factor of Bacillus subtilis.
J Biol Chem: 1994, 269(24);16977-82
[PubMed:8207022] [WorldCat.org] (P p)

K L Ohlsen, J K Grimsley, J A Hoch
Deactivation of the sporulation transcription factor Spo0A by the Spo0E protein phosphatase.
Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A: 1994, 91(5);1756-60
[PubMed:8127878] [WorldCat.org] [DOI] (P p)

J M Baldus, B D Green, P Youngman, C P Moran
Phosphorylation of Bacillus subtilis transcription factor Spo0A stimulates transcription from the spoIIG promoter by enhancing binding to weak 0A boxes.
J Bacteriol: 1994, 176(2);296-306
[PubMed:8288522] [WorldCat.org] [DOI] (P p)

T H Bird, J K Grimsley, J A Hoch, G B Spiegelman
Phosphorylation of Spo0A activates its stimulation of in vitro transcription from the Bacillus subtilis spoIIG operon.
Mol Microbiol: 1993, 9(4);741-9
[PubMed:8231806] [WorldCat.org] [DOI] (P p)

K K Jensen, E Sharkova, M F Duggan, Y Qi, A Koide, J A Hoch, F M Hulett
Bacillus subtilis transcription regulator, Spo0A, decreases alkaline phosphatase levels induced by phosphate starvation.
J Bacteriol: 1993, 175(12);3749-56
[PubMed:8509330] [WorldCat.org] [DOI] (P p)

M A Strauch, K A Trach, J Day, J A Hoch
Spo0A activates and represses its own synthesis by binding at its dual promoters.
Biochimie: 1992, 74(7-8);619-26
[PubMed:1391039] [WorldCat.org] [DOI] (P p)

M Predich, G Nair, I Smith
Bacillus subtilis early sporulation genes kinA, spo0F, and spo0A are transcribed by the RNA polymerase containing sigma H.
J Bacteriol: 1992, 174(9);2771-8
[PubMed:1569009] [WorldCat.org] [DOI] (P p)

K York, T J Kenney, S Satola, C P Moran, H Poth, P Youngman
Spo0A controls the sigma A-dependent activation of Bacillus subtilis sporulation-specific transcription unit spoIIE.
J Bacteriol: 1992, 174(8);2648-58
[PubMed:1556084] [WorldCat.org] [DOI] (P p)

S W Satola, J M Baldus, C P Moran
Binding of Spo0A stimulates spoIIG promoter activity in Bacillus subtilis.
J Bacteriol: 1992, 174(5);1448-53
[PubMed:1537790] [WorldCat.org] [DOI] (P p)

M Perego, J J Wu, G B Spiegelman, J A Hoch
Mutational dissociation of the positive and negative regulatory properties of the Spo0A sporulation transcription factor of Bacillus subtilis.
Gene: 1991, 100;207-12
[PubMed:1905258] [WorldCat.org] [DOI] (P p)

D Burbulys, K A Trach, J A Hoch
Initiation of sporulation in B. subtilis is controlled by a multicomponent phosphorelay.
Cell: 1991, 64(3);545-52
[PubMed:1846779] [WorldCat.org] [DOI] (P p)

U Bai, M Lewandoski, E Dubnau, I Smith
Temporal regulation of the Bacillus subtilis early sporulation gene spo0F.
J Bacteriol: 1990, 172(9);5432-9
[PubMed:2118512] [WorldCat.org] [DOI] (P p)

G Spiegelman, B Van Hoy, M Perego, J Day, K Trach, J A Hoch
Structural alterations in the Bacillus subtilis Spo0A regulatory protein which suppress mutations at several spo0 loci.
J Bacteriol: 1990, 172(9);5011-9
[PubMed:2118505] [WorldCat.org] [DOI] (P p)

M Strauch, V Webb, G Spiegelman, J A Hoch
The SpoOA protein of Bacillus subtilis is a repressor of the abrB gene.
Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A: 1990, 87(5);1801-5
[PubMed:2106683] [WorldCat.org] [DOI] (P p)

M Perego, G B Spiegelman, J A Hoch
Structure of the gene for the transition state regulator, abrB: regulator synthesis is controlled by the spo0A sporulation gene in Bacillus subtilis.
Mol Microbiol: 1988, 2(6);689-99
[PubMed:3145384] [WorldCat.org] [DOI] (P p)

P Zuber, R Losick
Role of AbrB in Spo0A- and Spo0B-dependent utilization of a sporulation promoter in Bacillus subtilis.
J Bacteriol: 1987, 169(5);2223-30
[PubMed:2437099] [WorldCat.org] [DOI] (P p)

F A Ferrari, K Trach, D LeCoq, J Spence, E Ferrari, J A Hoch
Characterization of the spo0A locus and its deduced product.
Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A: 1985, 82(9);2647-51
[PubMed:3157992] [WorldCat.org] [DOI] (P p)

J A Hoch, K Trach, F Kawamura, H Saito
Identification of the transcriptional suppressor sof-1 as an alteration in the spo0A protein.
J Bacteriol: 1985, 161(2);552-5
[PubMed:2981817] [WorldCat.org] [DOI] (P p)