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Categories containing this gene/protein

genetic competence, transcription factors and their control, quorum sensing, phosphoproteins

This gene is a member of the following regulons

The ComA regulon


  • Coordinates on the chromosome (coding sequence): 3,252,804 -> 3,253,448
  • The protein

    Catalyzed reaction/ biological activity

    Protein family

  • ComA family (according to Swiss-Prot)
  • Paralogous protein(s)

    Kinetic information



  • phosphorylated by ComP on an Asp residue
  • Cofactors

    Effectors of protein activity

  • phosphorylation activates DNA binding
  • DNA-binding activity of ComA is inhibited by RapC PubMed, RapD PubMed, RapF PubMed, RapH PubMed and RapK PubMed
  • Structure

  • 1U83
  • 3ULQ (structure of the complex between the DNA-binding C-terminal domain of ComA with RapF) PubMed
  • Localization

  • cytoplasm (according to Swiss-Prot)
  • Interactions

  • RapC-ComA PubMed
  • RapF-ComA PubMed
  • RapH-ComA PubMed
  • ComP-ComA
  • ComA-RpoA PubMed
  • ComA-SigA PubMed
  • Additional information

    Expression and Regulation


  • comA-yuxO PubMed
  • Sigma factor

  • SigA PubMed
  • Regulation

    Regulatory mechanism

    Additional information

    Biological materials


    Expression vector

    lacZ fusion

    GFP fusion

    two-hybrid system

    FLAG-tag construct


    Labs working on this gene/protein



    López D, Kolter R

    Extracellular signals that define distinct and coexisting cell fates in Bacillus subtilis

    FEMS Microbiol Rev. 2010 Mar;34(2):134-49. doi: 10.1111/j.1574-6976.2009.00199.x. Epub 2009 Nov 23. Review. PubMed PMID: 20030732.
    Hamoen LW, Venema G, Kuipers OP

    Controlling competence in Bacillus subtilis: shared use of regulators

    Microbiology. 2003 Jan;149(Pt 1):9-17. Review. PubMed PMID: 12576575.

    Original Publications

    Even-Tov E, Omer Bendori S, Pollak S, Eldar A

    Transient Duplication-Dependent Divergence and Horizontal Transfer Underlie the Evolutionary Dynamics of Bacterial Cell-Cell Signaling

    PLoS Biol. 2016 Dec 29;14(12):e2000330. doi: 10.1371/journal.pbio.2000330. eCollection 2016 Dec. PubMed PMID: 28033323; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC5199041.
    Even-Tov E, Bendori SO, Valastyan J, Ke X, Pollak S, Bareia T, Ben-Zion I, Bassler BL, Eldar A

    Social Evolution Selects for Redundancy in Bacterial Quorum Sensing

    PLoS Biol. 2016 Feb 29;14(2):e1002386. doi: 10.1371/journal.pbio.1002386. eCollection 2016 Feb. PubMed PMID: 26927849; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC4771773.
    Pollak S, Omer-Bendori S, Even-Tov E, Lipsman V, Bareia T, Ben-Zion I, Eldar A

    Facultative cheating supports the coexistence of diverse quorum-sensing alleles

    Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2016 Feb 23;113(8):2152-7. doi: 10.1073/pnas.1520615113. Epub 2016 Jan 19. PubMed PMID: 26787913; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC4776494.
    Wolf D, Rippa V, Mobarec JC, Sauer P, Adlung L, Kolb P, Bischofs IB

    The quorum-sensing regulator ComA from Bacillus subtilis activates transcription using topologically distinct DNA motifs

    Nucleic Acids Res. 2016 Mar 18;44(5):2160-72. doi: 10.1093/nar/gkv1242. Epub 2015 Nov 17. PubMed PMID: 26582911; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC4797271.
    Oslizlo A, Stefanic P, Vatovec S, Beigot Glaser S, Rupnik M, Mandic-Mulec I

    Exploring ComQXPA quorum-sensing diversity and biocontrol potential of Bacillus spp

    isolates from tomato rhizoplane. Microb Biotechnol. 2015 May;8(3):527-40. doi: 10.1111/1751-7915.12258. Epub 2015 Mar 10. PubMed PMID: 25757097; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC4408185.
    Boguslawski KM, Hill PA, Griffith KL

    Novel mechanisms of controlling the activities of the transcription factors Spo0A and ComA by the plasmid-encoded quorum sensing regulators Rap60-Phr60 in Bacillus subtilis

    Mol Microbiol. 2015 Apr;96(2):325-48. doi: 10.1111/mmi.12939. Epub 2015 Feb 18. PubMed PMID: 25598361; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC4701059.
    Dogsa I, Choudhary KS, Marsetic Z, Hudaiberdiev S, Vera R, Pongor S, Mandic-Mulec I

    ComQXPA quorum sensing systems may not be unique to Bacillus subtilis: a census in prokaryotic genomes

    PLoS One. 2014 May 2;9(5):e96122. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0096122. eCollection 2014. PubMed PMID: 24788106; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC4008528.
    Oslizlo A, Stefanic P, Dogsa I, Mandic-Mulec I

    Private link between signal and response in Bacillus subtilis quorum sensing

    Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2014 Jan 28;111(4):1586-91. doi: 10.1073/pnas.1316283111. Epub 2014 Jan 14. PubMed PMID: 24425772; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC3910598.
    Deng X, Tian Y, Niu Q, Xu X, Shi H, Zhang H, Liang L, Zhang K, Huang X

    The ComP-ComA quorum system is essential for "Trojan horse" like pathogenesis in Bacillus nematocida

    PLoS One. 2013 Oct 9;8(10):e76920. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0076920. eCollection 2013. PubMed PMID: 24130811; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC3793909.
    Baker MD, Neiditch MB

    Structural basis of response regulator inhibition by a bacterial anti-activator protein

    PLoS Biol. 2011 Dec;9(12):e1001226. doi: 10.1371/journal.pbio.1001226. Epub 2011 Dec 27. PubMed PMID: 22215984; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC3246441.
    Hobbs CA, Bobay BG, Thompson RJ, Perego M, Cavanagh J

    NMR solution structure and DNA-binding model of the DNA-binding domain of competence protein A

    J Mol Biol. 2010 Apr 30;398(2):248-63. doi: 10.1016/j.jmb.2010.03.003. Epub 2010 Mar 17. PubMed PMID: 20302877; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC2855743.
    Wang X, Luo C, Liu Y, Nie Y, Liu Y, Zhang R, Chen Z

    Three non-aspartate amino acid mutations in the ComA Response regulator receiver motif severely decrease surfactin production, competence development and spore formation in Bacillus subtilis

    J Microbiol Biotechnol. 2010 Feb;20(2):301-10. PubMed PMID: 20208433.
    Hamze K, Julkowska D, Autret S, Hinc K, Nagorska K, Sekowska A, Holland IB, Séror SJ

    Identification of genes required for different stages of dendritic swarming in Bacillus subtilis, with a novel role for phrC

    Microbiology. 2009 Feb;155(Pt 2):398-412. doi: 10.1099/mic.0.021477-0. PubMed PMID: 19202088.
    Smits WK, Bongiorni C, Veening JW, Hamoen LW, Kuipers OP, Perego M

    Temporal separation of distinct differentiation pathways by a dual specificity Rap-Phr system in Bacillus subtilis

    Mol Microbiol. 2007 Jul;65(1):103-20. PubMed PMID: 17581123.
    Ogura M, Fujita Y

    Bacillus subtilis rapD, a direct target of transcription repression by RghR, negatively regulates srfA expression

    FEMS Microbiol Lett. 2007 Mar;268(1):73-80. Epub 2007 Jan 15. PubMed PMID: 17227471.
    Auchtung JM, Lee CA, Grossman AD

    Modulation of the ComA-dependent quorum response in Bacillus subtilis by multiple Rap proteins and Phr peptides

    J Bacteriol. 2006 Jul;188(14):5273-85. PubMed PMID: 16816200; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC1539962.
    Bongiorni C, Ishikawa S, Stephenson S, Ogasawara N, Perego M

    Synergistic regulation of competence development in Bacillus subtilis by two Rap-Phr systems

    J Bacteriol. 2005 Jul;187(13):4353-61. PubMed PMID: 15968044; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC1151770.
    Core L, Perego M

    TPR-mediated interaction of RapC with ComA inhibits response regulator-DNA binding for competence development in Bacillus subtilis

    Mol Microbiol. 2003 Sep;49(6):1509-22. PubMed PMID: 12950917.
    Sung HM, Yasbin RE

    Adaptive, or stationary-phase, mutagenesis, a component of bacterial differentiation in Bacillus subtilis

    J Bacteriol. 2002 Oct;184(20):5641-53. PubMed PMID: 12270822; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC139596.
    Yazgan A, Ozcengiz G, Marahiel MA

    Tn10 insertional mutations of Bacillus subtilis that block the biosynthesis of bacilysin

    Biochim Biophys Acta. 2001 Mar 19;1518(1-2):87-94. PubMed PMID: 11267663.
    Tortosa P, Logsdon L, Kraigher B, Itoh Y, Mandic-Mulec I, Dubnau D

    Specificity and genetic polymorphism of the Bacillus competence quorum-sensing system

    J Bacteriol. 2001 Jan;183(2):451-60. PubMed PMID: 11133937; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC94899.
    Persuh M, Turgay K, Mandic-Mulec I, Dubnau D

    The N- and C-terminal domains of MecA recognize different partners in the competence molecular switch

    Mol Microbiol. 1999 Aug;33(4):886-94. PubMed PMID: 10447896.
    Fabret C, Feher VA, Hoch JA

    Two-component signal transduction in Bacillus subtilis: how one organism sees its world

    J Bacteriol. 1999 Apr;181(7):1975-83. Review. PubMed PMID: 10094672; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC93607.
    Perego M, Hoch JA

    Cell-cell communication regulates the effects of protein aspartate phosphatases on the phosphorelay controlling development in Bacillus subtilis

    Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 1996 Feb 20;93(4):1549-53. PubMed PMID: 8643670; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC39978.
    Roggiani M, Dubnau D

    ComA, a phosphorylated response regulator protein of Bacillus subtilis, binds to the promoter region of srfA

    J Bacteriol. 1993 May;175(10):3182-7. PubMed PMID: 8387999; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC204641.
    Weinrauch Y, Guillen N, Dubnau DA

    Sequence and transcription mapping of Bacillus subtilis competence genes comB and comA, one of which is related to a family of bacterial regulatory determinants

    J Bacteriol. 1989 Oct;171(10):5362-75. PubMed PMID: 2507523; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC210374.
    Weinrauch Y, Penchev R, Dubnau E, Smith I, Dubnau D

    A Bacillus subtilis regulatory gene product for genetic competence and sporulation resembles sensor protein members of the bacterial two-component signal-transduction systems

    Genes Dev. 1990 May;4(5):860-72. PubMed PMID: 2116363.
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