RNase I regulates Escherichia coli 20,30-cyclic nucleotide monophosphate levels and biofilm formation

Benjamin M. Fontaine, Kevin S. Martin, Jennifer M. Garcia-Rodriguez, Claire Jung, Laura Briggs, Jessica E. Southwell, Xin Jia, Emily E. Weinert

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

25 Scopus citations


Regulation of nucleotide and nucleoside concentrations is critical for faithful DNA replication, transcription, and translation in all organisms, and has been linked to bacterial biofilm formation. Unusual 20,30-cyclic nucleotide monophosphates (20,30-cNMPs) recently were quantified in mammalian systems, and previous reports have linked these nucleotides to cellular stress and damage in eukaryotes, suggesting an intriguing connection with nucleotide/nucleoside pools and/or cyclic nucleotide signaling. This work reports the first quantification of 20,30-cNMPs in Escherichia coli and demonstrates that 20,30-cNMP levels in E. coli are generated specifically from RNase I-catalyzed RNA degradation, presumably as part of a previously unidentified nucleotide salvage pathway. Furthermore, RNase I and 20,30-cNMP levels are demonstrated to play an important role in controlling biofilm formation. This work identifies a physiological role for cytoplasmic RNase I and constitutes the first progress toward elucidating the biological functions of bacterial 20,30-cNMPs.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1491-1506
Number of pages16
JournalBiochemical Journal
Issue number8
StatePublished - Apr 30 2018

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology


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