Genetic characterization of a new type IV-A pilus gene cluster found in both classical and El Tor biotypes of Vibrio cholerae.
The Vibrio cholerae genome contains a 5.4-kb pil gene cluster that resembles the Aeromonas hydrophila tap gene cluster and other type IV-A pilus assembly operons. The region consists of five complete open reading frames designated pilABCD and yacE, based on the nomenclature of related genes from Pseudomonas aeruginosa and Escherichia coli K-12. This cluster is present in both classical and El Tor biotypes, and the pilA and pilD genes are 100% conserved. The pilA gene encodes a putative type IV pilus subunit. However, deletion of pilA had no effect on either colonization of infant mice or adherence to HEp-2 cells, demonstrating that pilA does not encode the primary subunit of a pilus essential for these processes. The pilD gene product is similar to other type IV prepilin peptidases, proteins that process type IV signal sequences. Mutational analysis of the pilD gene showed that pilD is essential for secretion of cholera toxin and hemagglutinin-protease, mannose-sensitive hemagglutination (MSHA), production of toxin-coregulated pili, and colonization of infant mice. Defects in these functions are likely due to the lack of processing of N termini of four Eps secretion proteins, four proteins of the MSHA cluster, and TcpB, all of which contain type IV-A leader sequences. Some pilD mutants also showed reduced adherence to HEp-2 cells, but this defect could not be complemented in trans, indicating that the defect may not be directly due to a loss of pilD. Taken together, these data demonstrate the effectiveness of the V. cholerae genome project for rapid identification and characterization of potential virulence factors. (+info
A role for the mannose-sensitive hemagglutinin in biofilm formation by Vibrio cholerae El Tor.
While much has been learned regarding the genetic basis of host-pathogen interactions, less is known about the molecular basis of a pathogen's survival in the environment. Biofilm formation on abiotic surfaces represents a survival strategy utilized by many microbes. Here it is shown that Vibrio cholerae El Tor does not use the virulence-associated toxin-coregulated pilus to form biofilms on borosilicate but rather uses the mannose-sensitive hemagglutinin (MSHA) pilus, which plays no role in pathogenicity. In contrast, attachment of V. cholerae to chitin is shown to be independent of the MSHA pilus, suggesting divergent pathways for biofilm formation on nutritive and nonnutritive abiotic surfaces. (+info
Steps in the development of a Vibrio cholerae El Tor biofilm.
We report that, in a simple, static culture system, wild-type Vibrio cholerae El Tor forms a three-dimensional biofilm with characteristic water channels and pillars of bacteria. Furthermore, we have isolated and characterized transposon insertion mutants of V. cholerae that are defective in biofilm development. The transposons were localized to genes involved in (i) the biosynthesis and secretion of the mannose-sensitive haemagglutinin type IV pilus (MSHA); (ii) the synthesis of exopolysaccharide; and (iii) flagellar motility. The phenotypes of these three groups suggest that the type IV pilus and flagellum accelerate attachment to the abiotic surface, the flagellum mediates spread along the abiotic surface, and exopolysaccharide is involved in the formation of three-dimensional biofilm architecture. (+info
Lectin-carbohydrate interactions: fine specificity difference between two mannose-binding proteins.
Two types of rat mannose-binding proteins (MBPs), MBP-A (serum type) and MBP-C (liver type), have similar binding specificity for monosaccharide and similar binding site construct according to the X-ray structure, but exhibit different affinity toward natural oligosaccharides and glycoproteins. To understand the basis for this phenomenon, we used cloned fragment of MBP-A and -C (entire carbohydrate-recognition domain and a short connecting piece) that exists as stable trimers in various binding studies. Binding of a number of mannose-containing di- and tri-saccharides and high-mannose type oligosaccharides indicated that MBP-C has an extended binding area of weak interaction with the second and the third mannose residues, whereas MBP-A recognizes just a single mannose residue. In addition, MBP-C has a weak secondary binding site some 25 A away from the primary site. These findings explain the higher affinity of MBP-C for natural high-mannose type oligosaccharides as compared to MBP-A. A huge affinity differential manifested by natural glycoproteins (e.g., inhibitory potency of thyroglobulin is approximately 200 fold higher for MBP-C than for MBP-A in a solid-phase assay) may be due to steric hindrance experienced by MBP-A in the competition assay, and suggests different arrangement of subunit in the MBP trimers. (+info
Localization and topology of ratp28, a member of a novel family of putative steroid-binding proteins.
We have cloned ratp28, a membrane protein from rat liver homologous to the previously described hpr6.6, a putative steroid-binding protein in humans. Ratp28 has a type II topology as determined by protease digestion experiments on intact and detergent-solubilized membranes. Subcellular fractionation by sucrose density centrifugation revealed a distribution for ratp28 identical to Bip as a marker for membranes of the endoplasmic reticulum. In these experiments no association was found with markers for Golgi or plasma membranes, indicating that ratp28 is localized to the endoplasmic reticulum. (+info
Rat mannose-binding protein a binds CD14.
Lipopolysaccharide (LPS) has been known to induce inflammation by interacting with CD14, which serves as a receptor for LPS. Mannose-binding protein (MBP) belongs to the collectin subgroup of the C-type lectin superfamily, along with surfactant proteins SP-A and SP-D. We have recently demonstrated that SP-A modulates LPS-induced cellular responses by interaction with CD14 (H. Sano, H. Sohma, T. Muta, S. Nomura, D. R. Voelker, and Y. Kuroki, J. Immunol. 163:387-395, 2000) and that SP-D also interacts with CD14 (H. Sano, H. Chiba, D. Iwaki, H. Sohma, D. R. Voelker, and Y. Kuroki, J. Biol. Chem. 275:22442-22451, 2000). In this study, we examined whether MBP, a collectin highly homologous to SP-A and SP-D, could bind CD14. Recombinant rat MBP-A bound recombinant human soluble CD14 in a concentration-dependent manner. Its binding was not inhibited in the presence of excess mannose or EDTA. MBP-A bound deglycosylated CD14 treated with N-glycosidase F, neuraminidase, and O-glycosidase, indicating that MBP-A interacts with the peptide portion of CD14. Since LPS was also a ligand for the collectins, we compared the characteristics of binding of MBP-A to LPS with those of binding to CD14. MBP-A bound to lipid A from Salmonella enterica serovar Minnesota and rough LPS (S. enterica serovar Minnesota Re595 and Escherichia coli J5, Rc), but not to smooth LPS (E. coli O26:B6 and O111:B4). Unlike CD14 binding, EDTA and excess mannose attenuated the binding of MBP-A to rough LPS. From these results, we conclude that CD14 is a novel ligand for MBP-A and that MBP-A utilizes a different mechanism for CD14 recognition from that for LPS. (+info
Polymorphisms in the MBL2 promoter correlated with risk of HIV-1 vertical transmission and AIDS progression.
We investigated the polymorphisms of the promoter region of the MBL2 gene, which codifies for the Mannose-binding protein (MBP). The study population included 90 children with vertically acquired HIV-infection, further divided on the basis of the disease rate, 27 HIV exposed-uninfected children, and 74 healthy control subjects matched for ethnic origin to evaluate the MBP involvement in the risk of HIV-1 infection and to assess the role of the MBP promoter in AIDS progression. A region of 380 bp in the promoter of the MBL2 gene was analysed by PCR and direct sequencing of both DNA strands. We found that the polymorphism at position -550 influences the risk of HIV-infection and AIDS progression. Also a 6 bp deletion at position -328 was correlated with HIV-1 infection. This study indicates that the promoter of the MBL2 gene influences vertical transmission of HIV and the course of perinatal infection. (+info
Conformational disorder of proteins assessed by real-space molecular dynamics refinement.
Motion is critical to the function of many proteins, but much more difficult to study than structure. Due to lack of easy alternatives, although there are inherent limitations, there have been several prior attempts to extract some information from the Bragg scattering in conventional diffraction patterns. Bragg diffraction reflects only a small proportion of a protein's motion and disorder, so fitted values likely underestimate reality. However, this work shows that the fitted estimates should be even smaller, because current methods of refinement over-fit the Bragg diffraction, leading to a component of the disorder that is not based on any experimental data, and could be characterized as a guess. Real-space refinement is less susceptible than other methods, but its application depends on the availability of very accurate experimental phases. A future challenge will be the collection of such data without resort to cryo-techniques, so that a physiologically relevant understanding can be achieved. (+info