Genetic regulation of vesiculogenesis and immunomodulation in Mycobacterium tuberculosis
Mycobacterium tuberculosis (Mtb) restrains immune responses well enough to escape eradication but elicits enough immunopathology to ensure its transmission. Here we provide evidence that this host-pathogen relationship is regulated in part by a cytosolic, membrane-associated protein with a unique structural fold, encoded by the Mtb gene rv0431. The protein acts by regulating the quantity of Mtb-derived membrane vesicles bearing Toll-like receptor 2 ligands, including the lipoproteins LpqH and SodC. We propose that rv0431 be named "vesiculogenesis and immune response regulator."