Bacterial cells continuously sense and respond to their environment using their inherent signalling and gene regulatory networks. Cells are equipped with parallel signalling pathways, which can specifically cope with individual input signals, while interconnectivities between pathways lead to an enhanced complexity of regulatory responses that enable sophisticated adaptation. In principle, any cell signalling pathway may be rewired to respond to non-cognate signals by exchanging and recombining their underlying cognate signalling components. In the present article, we review the engineering strategies and use of chimaeric regulatory proteins in cell signalling pathways, especially the TCS (two-component signalling) system in bacteria, to achieve novel customized signalling or regulatory functions. We envisage that engineered chimaeric regulatory proteins can play an important role to aid both forward and reverse engineering of biological systems for many desired applications.
- bacterial enhancer binding protein
- cell signalling
- chimaeric protein
- protein engineering
- synthetic biology
- two-component signalling system