WorldWideScience

Sample records for toxin complex proteins

  1. Higher-Order Structure in Bacterial VapBC Toxin-Antitoxin Complexes

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bendtsen, Kirstine L; Brodersen, Ditlev E

    2017-01-01

    Toxin-antitoxin systems are widespread in the bacterial kingdom, including in pathogenic species, where they allow rapid adaptation to changing environmental conditions through selective inhibition of key cellular processes, such as DNA replication or protein translation. Under normal growth...... that allow auto-regulation of transcription by direct binding to promoter DNA. In this chapter, we review our current understanding of the structural characteristics of type II toxin-antitoxin complexes in bacterial cells, with a special emphasis on the staggering variety of higher-order architecture...... conditions, type II toxins are inhibited through tight protein-protein interaction with a cognate antitoxin protein. This toxin-antitoxin complex associates into a higher-order macromolecular structure, typically heterotetrameric or heterooctameric, exposing two DNA binding domains on the antitoxin...

  2. Short Toxin-like Proteins Abound in Cnidaria Genomes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michal Linial

    2012-11-01

    Full Text Available Cnidaria is a rich phylum that includes thousands of marine species. In this study, we focused on Anthozoa and Hydrozoa that are represented by the Nematostella vectensis (Sea anemone and Hydra magnipapillata genomes. We present a method for ranking the toxin-like candidates from complete proteomes of Cnidaria. Toxin-like functions were revealed using ClanTox, a statistical machine-learning predictor trained on ion channel inhibitors from venomous animals. Fundamental features that were emphasized in training ClanTox include cysteines and their spacing along the sequences. Among the 83,000 proteins derived from Cnidaria representatives, we found 170 candidates that fulfill the properties of toxin-like-proteins, the vast majority of which were previously unrecognized as toxins. An additional 394 short proteins exhibit characteristics of toxin-like proteins at a moderate degree of confidence. Remarkably, only 11% of the predicted toxin-like proteins were previously classified as toxins. Based on our prediction methodology and manual annotation, we inferred functions for over 400 of these proteins. Such functions include protease inhibitors, membrane pore formation, ion channel blockers and metal binding proteins. Many of the proteins belong to small families of paralogs. We conclude that the evolutionary expansion of toxin-like proteins in Cnidaria contributes to their fitness in the complex environment of the aquatic ecosystem.

  3. Delayed Toxicity Associated with Soluble Anthrax Toxin Receptor Decoy-Ig Fusion Protein Treatment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cote, Christopher; Welkos, Susan; Manchester, Marianne; Young, John A. T.

    2012-01-01

    Soluble receptor decoy inhibitors, including receptor-immunogloubulin (Ig) fusion proteins, have shown promise as candidate anthrax toxin therapeutics. These agents act by binding to the receptor-interaction site on the protective antigen (PA) toxin subunit, thereby blocking toxin binding to cell surface receptors. Here we have made the surprising observation that co-administration of receptor decoy-Ig fusion proteins significantly delayed, but did not protect, rats challenged with anthrax lethal toxin. The delayed toxicity was associated with the in vivo assembly of a long-lived complex comprised of anthrax lethal toxin and the receptor decoy-Ig inhibitor. Intoxication in this system presumably results from the slow dissociation of the toxin complex from the inhibitor following their prolonged circulation. We conclude that while receptor decoy-Ig proteins represent promising candidates for the early treatment of B. anthracis infection, they may not be suitable for therapeutic use at later stages when fatal levels of toxin have already accumulated in the bloodstream. PMID:22511955

  4. The Structure of the Neurotoxin- Associated Protein HA33/A from Clostridium botulinum Suggests a Reoccurring Beta-Trefoil Fold in the Progenitor Toxin Complex

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Arndt, Joseph W; Gu, Jenny; Jaroszewski, Lukasz; Schwarzenbacher, Robert; Hanson, Michael A; Lebeda, Frank L; Stevens, Raymond C

    2004-01-01

    The hemagglutinating protein HA33 from Clostridium botulinum is associated with the large botulinum neurotoxin secreted complexes and is critical in toxin protection, internalization, and possibly activation...

  5. Characterization of Hemagglutinin Negative Botulinum Progenitor Toxins

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Suzanne R. Kalb

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Botulism is a disease involving intoxication with botulinum neurotoxins (BoNTs, toxic proteins produced by Clostridium botulinum and other clostridia. The 150 kDa neurotoxin is produced in conjunction with other proteins to form the botulinum progenitor toxin complex (PTC, alternating in size from 300 kDa to 500 kDa. These progenitor complexes can be classified into hemagglutinin positive or hemagglutinin negative, depending on the ability of some of the neurotoxin-associated proteins (NAPs to cause hemagglutination. The hemagglutinin positive progenitor toxin complex consists of BoNT, nontoxic non-hemagglutinin (NTNH, and three hemagglutinin proteins; HA-70, HA-33, and HA-17. Hemagglutinin negative progenitor toxin complexes contain BoNT and NTNH as the minimally functional PTC (M-PTC, but not the three hemagglutinin proteins. Interestingly, the genome of hemagglutinin negative progenitor toxin complexes comprises open reading frames (orfs which encode for three proteins, but the existence of these proteins has not yet been extensively demonstrated. In this work, we demonstrate that these three proteins exist and form part of the PTC for hemagglutinin negative complexes. Several hemagglutinin negative strains producing BoNT/A, /E, and /F were found to contain the three open reading frame proteins. Additionally, several BoNT/A-containing bivalent strains were examined, and NAPs from both genes, including the open reading frame proteins, were associated with BoNT/A. The open reading frame encoded proteins are more easily removed from the botulinum complex than the hemagglutinin proteins, but are present in several BoNT/A and /F toxin preparations. These are not easily removed from the BoNT/E complex, however, and are present even in commercially-available purified BoNT/E complex.

  6. Structural studies of the toxin-antitoxin proteins RelE and RelB from E. coli

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Andersen, Kasper Røjkjær; Overgaard, Martin; Gerdes, Kenn

    the special tRNA-mRNA mimic, tmRNA [1]. Questions to be addressed Many questions remain to be answered in the bacterial toxin-antitoxin system. The crystal structure of RelBE from Pyrococcus horikoshii OT3 was previously solved at 2.3Å [2]. This structure shows the molecule in an inactive state, but OT3......The bacterial toxin-antitoxin system The relBE operon in E. coli encodes two small proteins: A toxin, RelE (12 kDa) and an antitoxin, RelB (9 kDa). RelE is activated under nutritional stress and is able to inhibit protein synthesis by cleaving the mRNA in the ribosomal A-site. This stress response...... serves to down-regulate metabolism in the cell when growth conditions are limited. RelB is expressed in excess over RelE during balanced growth, and inhibits the toxicity of RelE by forming an extremely stable toxin-antitoxin complex. The activation of RelE is induced when the labile RelB protein...

  7. Synthesis of protein in intestinal cells exposed to cholera toxin

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Peterson, J.W.; Berg, W.D. Jr.; Coppenhaver, D.H.

    1987-01-01

    The mechanism by which cyclic adenosine monophosphate (AMP), formed by intestinal epithelial cells in response to cholera toxin, ultimately results in alterations in water and electrolyte transport is poorly understood. Several studies have indicated that inhibitors of transcription or translation block much of the transport of ions and water in the intestine and edema formation in tissue elicited by cholera toxin. Data presented in this study confirmed the inhibitory effects of cycloheximide on cholera toxin-induced fluid accumulation in the rabbit intestinal loop model. Neither cycloheximide nor actinomycin D altered the amount of cyclic AMP that accumulated in intestinal cells and Chinese hamster ovary cells exposed to cholera toxin. An increase in [ 3 H] leucine incorporation was readily demonstrable in intestinal epithelial cells from rabbits challenged with Vibrio cholerae. Similarly, intestinal epithelial cells incubated with cholera toxin for 4 hr synthesized substantially more protein than controls as determined by relative incorporation of [ 35 S] methionine. Most of the new protein synthesized in response to cholera toxin was membrane associated and of high molecular weight. The possible significance of the toxin-induced protein relative to cholera pathogenesis was discussed

  8. Identification of RNA species in the RNA-toxin complex and structure of the complex in Clostridium botulinum type E.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kitamura, Masaru

    2002-02-15

    Clostridium botulinum type E toxin was isolated in the form of a complex with RNA(s) from bacterial cells. Characterization of the complexed RNA remains to be elucidated. The RNA is identified here as ribosomal RNA (rRNA) having 23S and 16S components. The RNA-toxin complexes were found to be made up of three types with different molecular sizes. The three types of RNA-toxin complex are toxin bound to both the 23S and 16S rRNA, toxin bound to the 16S rRNA and a small amount of 23S rRNA, and toxin bound only to the 16S rRNA. ©2002 Elsevier Science (USA).

  9. Cholera toxin can catalyze ADP-ribosylation of cytoskeletal proteins

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kaslow, H.R.; Groppi, V.E.; Abood, M.E.; Bourne, H.R.

    1981-01-01

    Cholera toxin catalyzes transfer of radiolabel from [ 32 P]NAD + to several peptides in particulate preparations of human foreskin fibroblasts. Resolution of these peptides by two-dimensional gel electrophoresis allowed identification of two peptides of M/sub r/ = 42,000 and 52,000 as peptide subunits of a regulatory component of adenylate cyclase. The radiolabeling of another group of peptides (M/sub r/ = 50,000 to 65,000) suggested that cholera toxin could catalyze ADP-ribosylation of cytoskeletal proteins. This suggestion was confirmed by showing that incubation with cholera toxin and [ 32 P]NAD + caused radiolabeling of purified microtubule and intermediate filament proteins

  10. Mapping Proteoforms and Protein Complexes From King Cobra Venom Using Both Denaturing and Native Top-down Proteomics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Melani, Rafael D; Skinner, Owen S; Fornelli, Luca; Domont, Gilberto B; Compton, Philip D; Kelleher, Neil L

    2016-07-01

    Characterizing whole proteins by top-down proteomics avoids a step of inference encountered in the dominant bottom-up methodology when peptides are assembled computationally into proteins for identification. The direct interrogation of whole proteins and protein complexes from the venom of Ophiophagus hannah (king cobra) provides a sharply clarified view of toxin sequence variation, transit peptide cleavage sites and post-translational modifications (PTMs) likely critical for venom lethality. A tube-gel format for electrophoresis (called GELFrEE) and solution isoelectric focusing were used for protein fractionation prior to LC-MS/MS analysis resulting in 131 protein identifications (18 more than bottom-up) and a total of 184 proteoforms characterized from 14 protein toxin families. Operating both GELFrEE and mass spectrometry to preserve non-covalent interactions generated detailed information about two of the largest venom glycoprotein complexes: the homodimeric l-amino acid oxidase (∼130 kDa) and the multichain toxin cobra venom factor (∼147 kDa). The l-amino acid oxidase complex exhibited two clusters of multiproteoform complexes corresponding to the presence of 5 or 6 N-glycans moieties, each consistent with a distribution of N-acetyl hexosamines. Employing top-down proteomics in both native and denaturing modes provides unprecedented characterization of venom proteoforms and their complexes. A precise molecular inventory of venom proteins will propel the study of snake toxin variation and the targeted development of new antivenoms or other biotherapeutics. © 2016 by The American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Inc.

  11. Comparative genomics evidence that only protein toxins are tagging bad bugs

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kalliopi eGeorgiades

    2011-10-01

    Full Text Available The term toxin was introduced by Roux and Yersin and describes macromolecular substances that, when produced during infection or when introduced parenterally or orally, cause an impairment of physiological functions that lead to disease or to the death of the infected organism. Long after the discovery of toxins, early genetic studies on bacterial virulence demonstrated that removing a certain number of genes from pathogenic bacteria decreases their capacity to infect hosts. Each of the removed factors was therefore referred to as a virulence factor, and it was speculated that non-pathogenic bacteria lack such supplementary factors. However, many recent comparative studies demonstrate that the specialization of bacteria to eukaryotic hosts is associated with massive gene loss. We recently demonstrated that the only features that seem to characterize 12 epidemic bacteria are toxin-antitoxin (TA modules, which are addiction molecules in host bacteria. In this study, we investigated if protein toxins are indeed the only molecules specific to pathogenic bacteria by comparing 14 epidemic bacterial killers (bad bugs with their 14 closest non-epidemic relatives (controls. We found protein toxins in significantly more elevated numbers in all of the bad bugs. For the first time, statistical principal components analysis, including genome size, GC%, TA modules, restriction enzymes and toxins, revealed that toxins are the only proteins other than TA modules that are correlated with the pathogenic character of bacteria. Moreover, intracellular toxins appear to be more correlated with the pathogenic character of bacteria than secreted toxins. In conclusion, we hypothesize that the only truly identifiable phenomena, witnessing the convergent evolution of the most pathogenic bacteria for humans are the loss of metabolic activities, i.e., the outcome of the loss of regulatory and transcription factors and the presence of protein toxins, alone or coupled as TA

  12. The Yersinia pseudotuberculosis and Yersinia pestis toxin complex is active against cultured mammalian cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hares, Michelle C; Hinchliffe, Stewart J; Strong, Philippa C R; Eleftherianos, Ioannis; Dowling, Andrea J; ffrench-Constant, Richard H; Waterfield, Nick

    2008-11-01

    The toxin complex (Tc) genes were first identified in the insect pathogen Photorhabdus luminescens and encode approximately 1 MDa protein complexes which are toxic to insect pests. Subsequent genome sequencing projects have revealed the presence of tc orthologues in a range of bacterial pathogens known to be associated with insects. Interestingly, members of the mammalian-pathogenic yersiniae have also been shown to encode Tc orthologues. Studies in Yersinia enterocolitica have shown that divergent tc loci either encode insect-active toxins or play a role in colonization of the gut in gastroenteritis models of rats. So far little is known about the activity of the Tc proteins in the other mammalian-pathogenic yersiniae. Here we present work to suggest that Tc proteins in Yersinia pseudotuberculosis and Yersinia pestis are not insecticidal toxins but have evolved for mammalian pathogenicity. We show that Tc is secreted by Y. pseudotuberculosis strain IP32953 during growth in media at 28 degrees C and 37 degrees C. We also demonstrate that oral toxicity of strain IP32953 to Manduca sexta larvae is not due to Tc expression and that lysates of Escherichia coli BL21 expressing the Yersinia Tc proteins are not toxic to Sf9 insect cells but are toxic to cultured mammalian cell lines. Cell lysates of E. coli BL21 expressing the Y. pseudotuberculosis Tc proteins caused actin ruffles, vacuoles and multi-nucleation in cultured human gut cells (Caco-2); similar morphology was observed after application of a lysate of E. coli BL21 expressing the Y. pestis Tc proteins to mouse fibroblast NIH3T3 cells, but not Caco-2 cells. Finally, transient expression of the individual Tc proteins in Caco-2 and NIH3T3 cell lines reproduced the actin and nuclear rearrangement observed with the topical applications. Together these results add weight to the growing hypothesis that the Tc proteins in Y. pseudotuberculosis and Y. pestis have been adapted for mammalian pathogenicity. We further

  13. Comparative Proteomic Analysis Reveals Proteins Putatively Involved in Toxin Biosynthesis in the Marine Dinoflagellate Alexandrium catenella

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Da-Zhi Wang

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Alexandrium is a neurotoxin-producing dinoflagellate genus resulting in paralytic shellfish poisonings around the world. However, little is known about the toxin biosynthesis mechanism in Alexandrium. This study compared protein profiles of A. catenella collected at different toxin biosynthesis stages (non-toxin synthesis, initial toxin synthesis and toxin synthesizing coupled with the cell cycle, and identified differentially expressed proteins using 2-DE and MALDI-TOF-TOF mass spectrometry. The results showed that toxin biosynthesis of A. catenella occurred within a defined time frame in the G1 phase of the cell cycle. Proteomic analysis indicated that 102 protein spots altered significantly in abundance (P < 0.05, and 53 proteins were identified using database searching. These proteins were involved in a variety of biological processes, i.e., protein modification and biosynthesis, metabolism, cell division, oxidative stress, transport, signal transduction, and translation. Among them, nine proteins with known functions in paralytic shellfish toxin-producing cyanobacteria, i.e., methionine S-adenosyltransferase, chloroplast ferredoxin-NADP+ reductase, S-adenosylhomocysteinase, adenosylhomocysteinase, ornithine carbamoyltransferase, inorganic pyrophosphatase, sulfotransferase (similar to, alcohol dehydrogenase and arginine deiminase, varied significantly at different toxin biosynthesis stages and formed an interaction network, indicating that they might be involved in toxin biosynthesis in A. catenella. This study is the first step in the dissection of the behavior of the A. catenella proteome during different toxin biosynthesis stages and provides new insights into toxin biosynthesis in dinoflagellates.

  14. Cellular recovery from exposure to sub-optimal concentrations of AB toxins that inhibit protein synthesis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shiga toxin 1, exotoxin A, diphtheria toxin and ricin are all AB-type protein toxins that act within the host cytosol to kill the host cell through a pathway involving the inhibition of protein synthesis. It is thought that a single molecule of cytosolic toxin is sufficient to kill the host cell. In...

  15. Structure, diversity and evolution of protein toxins from spore-forming entomopathogenic bacteria

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Maagd, de R.A.; Bravo, A.; Berry, C.; Crickmore, N.; Schnepf, H.E.

    2003-01-01

    Gram-positive spore-forming entomopathogenic bacteria can utilize a large variety of protein toxins to help them invade, infect, and finally kill their hosts, through their action on the insect midgut. These toxins belong to a number of homology groups containing a diversity of protein structures

  16. Comparative proteomic analysis reveals proteins putatively involved in toxin biosynthesis in the marine dinoflagellate Alexandrium catenella.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Da-Zhi; Gao, Yue; Lin, Lin; Hong, Hua-Sheng

    2013-01-22

    Alexandrium is a neurotoxin-producing dinoflagellate genus resulting in paralytic shellfish poisonings around the world. However, little is known about the toxin biosynthesis mechanism in Alexandrium. This study compared protein profiles of A. catenella collected at different toxin biosynthesis stages (non-toxin synthesis, initial toxin synthesis and toxin synthesizing) coupled with the cell cycle, and identified differentially expressed proteins using 2-DE and MALDI-TOF-TOF mass spectrometry. The results showed that toxin biosynthesis of A. catenella occurred within a defined time frame in the G1 phase of the cell cycle. Proteomic analysis indicated that 102 protein spots altered significantly in abundance (P translation. Among them, nine proteins with known functions in paralytic shellfish toxin-producing cyanobacteria, i.e., methionine S-adenosyltransferase, chloroplast ferredoxin-NADP+ reductase, S-adenosylhomocysteinase, adenosylhomocysteinase, ornithine carbamoyltransferase, inorganic pyrophosphatase, sulfotransferase (similar to), alcohol dehydrogenase and arginine deiminase, varied significantly at different toxin biosynthesis stages and formed an interaction network, indicating that they might be involved in toxin biosynthesis in A. catenella. This study is the first step in the dissection of the behavior of the A. catenella proteome during different toxin biosynthesis stages and provides new insights into toxin biosynthesis in dinoflagellates.

  17. Influence of bacterial toxins on the GTPase activity of transducin from bovine retinal rod outer segments

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rybin, V.O.; Gureeva, A.A.

    1986-01-01

    The action of cholera toxin, capable of ADP-ribosylation of the activator N/sub s/ protein, and pertussis toxin, capable of ADP-ribosylation of the inhibitor N/sub i/ protein of the adenylate cyclase complex, on transducin, the GTP-binding protein of the rod outer segments of the retina, was investigated. It was shown that under the action of pertussis and cholera toxins, the GTPase activity of transducin is inhibited. Pertussin toxin inhibits the GTPase of native retinal rod outer segments by 30-40%, while GTPase of homogeneous transducin produces a 70-80% inhibition. The action of toxins on transducin depends on the presence and nature of the guanylic nucleotide with which incubation is performed. On the basis of the data obtained it is suggested that pertussis toxin interacts with pretransducin and with the transducin-GDP complex, while cholera toxin ADP-ribosylates the transducin-GTP complex and does not act on transducin lacking GTP

  18. Influence of yogurt fermentation and refrigerated storage on the stability of protein toxin contaminants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jackson, Lauren S; Triplett, Odbert A; Tolleson, William H

    2015-06-01

    Dairy products sold in a ready-to-eat form present the risk that adulterants persisting through manufacturing, storage, and distribution would reach consumers. Pathogenic microbes, including shigatoxigenic strains of Escherichia coli and the toxins they produce, are common food safety hazards associated with dairy products. Ricin and abrin are plant-derived ribosome-inactivating protein toxins related to the shiga-like toxins produced by E. coli. Limited information exists on the effects of manufacturing processes on the stabilities of these heat-resistant ribosome-inactivating proteins in the presence of foods. The goal of this study was to determine how typical yogurt manufacturing and storage processes influence ribosome-inactivating protein toxins. Ricin and abrin were added to skim or whole milk and batch pasteurized. Complete inactivation of both toxins was observed after 30 minutes at 85 °C. If the toxins were added after pasteurization, the levels of ricin and abrin in yogurt and their cytotoxic activities did not change significantly during fermentation or refrigerated storage for 4 weeks. The activities of ricin and abrin were inhibited by skim milk, nonfat yogurt, whole milk, and whole milk yogurt. The results showed minimal effects of the toxins on yogurt pH and %titratable acidity but inhibitory effects of yogurt on toxin activity. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  19. Regulating Toxin-Antitoxin Expression: Controlled Detonation of Intracellular Molecular Timebombs

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Finbarr Hayes

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Genes for toxin-antitoxin (TA complexes are widely disseminated in bacteria, including in pathogenic and antibiotic resistant species. The toxins are liberated from association with the cognate antitoxins by certain physiological triggers to impair vital cellular functions. TAs also are implicated in antibiotic persistence, biofilm formation, and bacteriophage resistance. Among the ever increasing number of TA modules that have been identified, the most numerous are complexes in which both toxin and antitoxin are proteins. Transcriptional autoregulation of the operons encoding these complexes is key to ensuring balanced TA production and to prevent inadvertent toxin release. Control typically is exerted by binding of the antitoxin to regulatory sequences upstream of the operons. The toxin protein commonly works as a transcriptional corepressor that remodels and stabilizes the antitoxin. However, there are notable exceptions to this paradigm. Moreover, it is becoming clear that TA complexes often form one strand in an interconnected web of stress responses suggesting that their transcriptional regulation may prove to be more intricate than currently understood. Furthermore, interference with TA gene transcriptional autoregulation holds considerable promise as a novel antibacterial strategy: artificial release of the toxin factor using designer drugs is a potential approach to induce bacterial suicide from within.

  20. CD44 Promotes intoxication by the clostridial iota-family toxins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wigelsworth, Darran J; Ruthel, Gordon; Schnell, Leonie; Herrlich, Peter; Blonder, Josip; Veenstra, Timothy D; Carman, Robert J; Wilkins, Tracy D; Van Nhieu, Guy Tran; Pauillac, Serge; Gibert, Maryse; Sauvonnet, Nathalie; Stiles, Bradley G; Popoff, Michel R; Barth, Holger

    2012-01-01

    Various pathogenic clostridia produce binary protein toxins associated with enteric diseases of humans and animals. Separate binding/translocation (B) components bind to a protein receptor on the cell surface, assemble with enzymatic (A) component(s), and mediate endocytosis of the toxin complex. Ultimately there is translocation of A component(s) from acidified endosomes into the cytosol, leading to destruction of the actin cytoskeleton. Our results revealed that CD44, a multifunctional surface protein of mammalian cells, facilitates intoxication by the iota family of clostridial binary toxins. Specific antibody against CD44 inhibited cytotoxicity of the prototypical Clostridium perfringens iota toxin. Versus CD44(+) melanoma cells, those lacking CD44 bound less toxin and were dose-dependently resistant to C. perfringens iota, as well as Clostridium difficile and Clostridium spiroforme iota-like, toxins. Purified CD44 specifically interacted in vitro with iota and iota-like, but not related Clostridium botulinum C2, toxins. Furthermore, CD44 knockout mice were resistant to iota toxin lethality. Collective data reveal an important role for CD44 during intoxication by a family of clostridial binary toxins.

  1. Host-derived, pore-forming toxin-like protein and trefoil factor complex protects the host against microbial infection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xiang, Yang; Yan, Chao; Guo, Xiaolong; Zhou, Kaifeng; Li, Sheng'an; Gao, Qian; Wang, Xuan; Zhao, Feng; Liu, Jie; Lee, Wen-Hui; Zhang, Yun

    2014-05-06

    Aerolysins are virulence factors belonging to the bacterial β-pore-forming toxin superfamily. Surprisingly, numerous aerolysin-like proteins exist in vertebrates, but their biological functions are unknown. βγ-CAT, a complex of an aerolysin-like protein subunit (two βγ-crystallin domains followed by an aerolysin pore-forming domain) and two trefoil factor subunits, has been identified in frogs (Bombina maxima) skin secretions. Here, we report the rich expression of this protein, in the frog blood and immune-related tissues, and the induction of its presence in peritoneal lavage by bacterial challenge. This phenomena raises the possibility of its involvement in antimicrobial infection. When βγ-CAT was administrated in a peritoneal infection model, it greatly accelerated bacterial clearance and increased the survival rate of both frogs and mice. Meanwhile, accelerated Interleukin-1β release and enhanced local leukocyte recruitments were determined, which may partially explain the robust and effective antimicrobial responses observed. The release of interleukin-1β was potently triggered by βγ-CAT from the frog peritoneal cells and murine macrophages in vitro. βγ-CAT was rapidly endocytosed and translocated to lysosomes, where it formed high molecular mass SDS-stable oligomers (>170 kDa). Lysosomal destabilization and cathepsin B release were detected, which may explain the activation of caspase-1 inflammasome and subsequent interleukin-1β maturation and release. To our knowledge, these results provide the first functional evidence of the ability of a host-derived aerolysin-like protein to counter microbial infection by eliciting rapid and effective host innate immune responses. The findings will also largely help to elucidate the possible involvement and action mechanisms of aerolysin-like proteins and/or trefoil factors widely existing in vertebrates in the host defense against pathogens.

  2. Machine learning can differentiate venom toxins from other proteins having non-toxic physiological functions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ranko Gacesa

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available Ascribing function to sequence in the absence of biological data is an ongoing challenge in bioinformatics. Differentiating the toxins of venomous animals from homologues having other physiological functions is particularly problematic as there are no universally accepted methods by which to attribute toxin function using sequence data alone. Bioinformatics tools that do exist are difficult to implement for researchers with little bioinformatics training. Here we announce a machine learning tool called ‘ToxClassifier’ that enables simple and consistent discrimination of toxins from non-toxin sequences with >99% accuracy and compare it to commonly used toxin annotation methods. ‘ToxClassifer’ also reports the best-hit annotation allowing placement of a toxin into the most appropriate toxin protein family, or relates it to a non-toxic protein having the closest homology, giving enhanced curation of existing biological databases and new venomics projects. ‘ToxClassifier’ is available for free, either to download (https://github.com/rgacesa/ToxClassifier or to use on a web-based server (http://bioserv7.bioinfo.pbf.hr/ToxClassifier/.

  3. In Silico Analysis for the Study of Botulinum Toxin Structure

    Science.gov (United States)

    Suzuki, Tomonori; Miyazaki, Satoru

    2010-01-01

    Protein-protein interactions play many important roles in biological function. Knowledge of protein-protein complex structure is required for understanding the function. The determination of protein-protein complex structure by experimental studies remains difficult, therefore computational prediction of protein structures by structure modeling and docking studies is valuable method. In addition, MD simulation is also one of the most popular methods for protein structure modeling and characteristics. Here, we attempt to predict protein-protein complex structure and property using some of bioinformatic methods, and we focus botulinum toxin complex as target structure.

  4. A cell-based fluorescent assay to detect the activity of AB toxins that inhibit protein synthesis

    Science.gov (United States)

    AB-type protein toxins, produced by numerous bacterial pathogens and some plants, elicit a cytotoxic effect involving the inhibition of protein synthesis. To develop an improved method to detect the inhibition of protein synthesis by AB-type toxins, the present study characterized a Vero cell line t...

  5. Yersinia pestis insecticidal-like toxin complex (Tc family proteins: characterization of expression, subcellular localization, and potential role in infection of the flea vector

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Spinner Justin L

    2012-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Toxin complex (Tc family proteins were first identified as insecticidal toxins in Photorhabdus luminescens and have since been found in a wide range of bacteria. The genome of Yersinia pestis, the causative agent of bubonic plague, contains a locus that encodes the Tc protein homologues YitA, YitB, YitC, and YipA and YipB. Previous microarray data indicate that the Tc genes are highly upregulated by Y. pestis while in the flea vector; however, their role in the infection of fleas and pathogenesis in the mammalian host is unclear. Results We show that the Tc proteins YitA and YipA are highly produced by Y. pestis while in the flea but not during growth in brain heart infusion (BHI broth at the same temperature. Over-production of the LysR-type regulator YitR from an exogenous plasmid increased YitA and YipA synthesis in broth culture. The increase in production of YitA and YipA correlated with the yitR copy number and was temperature-dependent. Although highly synthesized in fleas, deletion of the Tc proteins did not alter survival of Y. pestis in the flea or prevent blockage of the proventriculus. Furthermore, YipA was found to undergo post-translational processing and YipA and YitA are localized to the outer membrane of Y. pestis. YitA was also detected by immunofluorescence microscopy on the surface of Y. pestis. Both YitA and YipA are produced maximally at low temperature but persist for several hours after transfer to 37°C. Conclusions Y. pestis Tc proteins are highly expressed in the flea but are not essential for Y. pestis to stably infect or produce a transmissible infection in the flea. However, YitA and YipA localize to the outer membrane and YitA is exposed on the surface, indicating that at least YitA is present on the surface when Y. pestis is transmitted into the mammalian host from the flea.

  6. Food Forensics: Using Mass Spectrometry To Detect Foodborne Protein Contaminants, as Exemplified by Shiga Toxin Variants and Prion Strains.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Silva, Christopher J

    2018-06-13

    Food forensicists need a variety of tools to detect the many possible food contaminants. As a result of its analytical flexibility, mass spectrometry is one of those tools. Use of the multiple reaction monitoring (MRM) method expands its use to quantitation as well as detection of infectious proteins (prions) and protein toxins, such as Shiga toxins. The sample processing steps inactivate prions and Shiga toxins; the proteins are digested with proteases to yield peptides suitable for MRM-based analysis. Prions are detected by their distinct physicochemical properties and differential covalent modification. Shiga toxin analysis is based on detecting peptides derived from the five identical binding B subunits comprising the toxin. 15 N-labeled internal standards are prepared from cloned proteins. These examples illustrate the power of MRM, in that the same instrument can be used to safely detect and quantitate protein toxins, prions, and small molecules that might contaminate our food.

  7. Supercharging Protein Complexes from Aqueous Solution Disrupts their Native Conformations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sterling, Harry J.; Kintzer, Alexander F.; Feld, Geoffrey K.; Cassou, Catherine A.; Krantz, Bryan A.; Williams, Evan R.

    2012-02-01

    The effects of aqueous solution supercharging on the solution- and gas-phase structures of two protein complexes were investigated using traveling-wave ion mobility-mass spectrometry (TWIMS-MS). Low initial concentrations of m-nitrobenzyl alcohol ( m-NBA) in the electrospray ionization (ESI) solution can effectively increase the charge of concanavalin A dimers and tetramers, but at higher m-NBA concentrations, the increases in charge are accompanied by solution-phase dissociation of the dimers and up to a ~22% increase in the collision cross section (CCS) of the tetramers. With just 0.8% m-NBA added to the ESI solution of a ~630 kDa anthrax toxin octamer complex, the average charge is increased by only ~4% compared with the "native" complex, but it is sufficiently destabilized so that extensive gas-phase fragmentation occurs in the relatively high pressure regions of the TWIMS device. Anthrax toxin complexes exist in either a prechannel or a transmembrane channel state. With m-NBA, the prechannel state of the complex has the same CCS/charge ratio in the gas phase as the transmembrane channel state of the same complex formed without m-NBA, yet undergoes extensive dissociation, indicating that destabilization from supercharging occurs in the ESI droplet prior to ion formation and is not a result of Coulombic destabilization in the gas phase as a result of higher charging. These results demonstrate that the supercharging of large protein complexes is the result of conformational changes induced by the reagents in the ESI droplets, where enrichment of the supercharging reagent during droplet evaporation occurs.

  8. Steady-state levels of G-protein beta-subunit expression are regulated by treatment of cells with bacterial toxins

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Watkins, D.C.; Northup, J.K.; Malbon, C.C.

    1987-01-01

    Cultures of 3T3-L1 cells were incubated with either 10 ng/ml cholera toxin or 10 ng/ml pertussis toxin from 4 days prior to the initiation of differentiation and throughout the subsequent incubation. Toxin concentrations were sufficient to completely prevent the labelling of alpha-subunits with [ 32 P]NAD + and pertussis toxin and to prevent by more than 90% the labelling with [ 32 P]NAD + and cholera toxin in membranes prepared from these cells. Neither toxin prevented the differentiation to the adipocyte phenotype. Neither toxin prevented the increases in the relative amounts of G-proteins which occur upon differentiation. Both toxins dramatically decreased the amount of beta-subunits. As measured by quantitative immunoblotting with antisera specific for both the 35 kDa and 36 kDa beta-subunits, levels of beta-subunit were decreased by more than 50% of steady-state level of control cells. Thus, bacterial toxins which modifies G-protein alpha-subunits are capable of modulating the levels of beta-subunits in vivo. The basis for the regulation of G-protein subunit expression by bacterial toxins is under study

  9. Protein-bound toxins: added value in their removal with high convective volumes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abad, Soraya; Vega, Almudena; Quiroga, Borja; Arroyo, David; Panizo, Nayara; Reque, Javier Eduardo; López-Gómez, Juan Manuel

    Chronic kidney disease is associated with an increased risk of cardiovascular events. In recent years, protein-bound toxins have become more important due to their association with increased morbidity and mortality, characterised by inadequate clearance during dialysis. The purpose of this study is to assess the influence of high convective volumes on postdilution online haemodiafiltration (OL-HDF) on the removal of medium-sized molecules, small molecules and protein-bound molecules. In forty postdilutional OL-HDF sessions, the reduction rates of toxins of different molecular weights were measured in 13 patients, including protein-bound molecules such as p-cresyl sulphate, indoxyl sulphate and homocysteine. Total convective volume was 28.3 (5.1) litres (range 16.3-38.0 litres). Mean reduction rate of protein-bound molecules was 44.4% (15.7%), 48.7% (14.1%) and 58.6% (8.8%) for p-cresyl sulphate, indoxyl sulphate and homocysteine, respectively. Moreover, a statistically significant direct association was found between the reduction rates of all three molecules, the replacement volume and the Kt/V. High convective volumes during postdilution OL-HDF are associated with increased removal of protein-bound uraemic toxins. Copyright © 2016 Sociedad Española de Nefrología. Published by Elsevier España, S.L.U. All rights reserved.

  10. Bioterrorism: toxins as weapons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Anderson, Peter D

    2012-04-01

    The potential for biological weapons to be used in terrorism is a real possibility. Biological weapons include infectious agents and toxins. Toxins are poisons produced by living organisms. Toxins relevant to bioterrorism include ricin, botulinum, Clostridium perfrigens epsilson toxin, conotoxins, shigatoxins, saxitoxins, tetrodotoxins, mycotoxins, and nicotine. Toxins have properties of biological and chemical weapons. Unlike pathogens, toxins do not produce an infection. Ricin causes multiorgan toxicity by blocking protein synthesis. Botulinum blocks acetylcholine in the peripheral nervous system leading to muscle paralysis. Epsilon toxin damages cell membranes. Conotoxins block potassium and sodium channels in neurons. Shigatoxins inhibit protein synthesis and induce apoptosis. Saxitoxin and tetrodotoxin inhibit sodium channels in neurons. Mycotoxins include aflatoxins and trichothecenes. Aflatoxins are carcinogens. Trichothecenes inhibit protein and nucleic acid synthesis. Nicotine produces numerous nicotinic effects in the nervous system.

  11. A simple electroelution method for rapid protein purification: isolation and antibody production of alpha toxin from Clostridium septicum

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lorena Vázquez-Iglesias

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Clostridium septicum produces a number of diseases in human and farm animals which, in most of the cases, are fatal without clinical intervention. Alpha toxin is an important agent and the unique lethal virulent factor produced by Clostridium septicum. This toxin is haemolytic, highly lethal and necrotizing activities but is being used as an antigen to develop animal vaccines. The aim of this study was to isolate the alpha toxin of Clostridium septicum and produce highly specific antibodies against it. In this work, we have developed a simple and efficient method for alpha toxin purification, based on electroelution that can be used as a time-saving method for purifying proteins. This technique avoids contamination by other proteins that could appear during other protein purification techniques such chromatography. The highly purified toxin was used to produce polyclonal antibodies. The specificity of the antibodies was tested by western blot and these antibodies can be applied to the quantitative determination of alpha toxin by slot blot.

  12. Mass Spectrometric Identification and Differentiation of Botulinum Neurotoxins through Toxin Proteomics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kalb, Suzanne R; Barr, John R

    2013-08-01

    Botulinum neurotoxins (BoNTs) cause the disease botulism, which can be lethal if untreated. There are seven known serotypes of BoNT, A-G, defined by their response to antisera. Many serotypes are distinguished into differing subtypes based on amino acid sequence and immunogenic properties, and some subtypes are further differentiated into toxin variants. Toxin characterization is important as different types of BoNT can respond differently to medical countermeasures for botulism, and characterization of the toxin can aid in epidemiologic and forensic investigations. Proteomic techniques have been established to determine the serotype, subtype, or toxin variant of BoNT. These techniques involve digestion of the toxin into peptides, tandem mass spectrometric (MS/MS) analysis of the peptides, and database searching to identify the BoNT protein. These techniques demonstrate the capability to detect BoNT and its neurotoxin-associated proteins, and differentiate the toxin from other toxins which are up to 99.9% identical in some cases. This differentiation can be accomplished from toxins present in a complex matrix such as stool, food, or bacterial cultures and no DNA is required.

  13. The occurrence of Photorhabdus-like toxin complexes in Bacillus thuringiensis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Recently, genomic sequencing of a Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt) isolate from our collection revealed the presence of an apparent operon encoding an insecticidal toxin complex (Tca) similar to that first described from the entomopathogen Photorhabdus luminescens. To determine whether these genes are w...

  14. Analysis of the mechanisms that underlie absorption of botulinum toxin by the inhalation route.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Al-Saleem, Fetweh H; Ancharski, Denise M; Joshi, Suresh G; Elias, M; Singh, Ajay; Nasser, Zidoon; Simpson, Lance L

    2012-12-01

    Botulinum toxin is a highly potent oral and inhalation poison, which means that the toxin must have an efficient mechanism for penetration of epithelial barriers. To date, three models for toxin passage across epithelial barriers have been proposed: (i) the toxin itself undergoes binding and transcytosis; (ii) an auxiliary protein, HA35, transports toxin from the apical to the basal side of epithelial cells; and (iii) an auxiliary protein, HA35, acts on the basal side of epithelial cells to disrupt tight junctions, and this permits paracellular flux of toxin. These models were evaluated by studying toxin absorption following inhalation exposure in mice. Three types of experiments were conducted. In the first, the potency of pure neurotoxin was compared with that of progenitor toxin complex, which contains HA35. The results showed that the rate and extent of toxin absorption, as well as the potency of absorbed toxin, did not depend upon, nor were they enhanced by, the presence of HA35. In the second type of experiment, the potencies of pure neurotoxin and progenitor toxin complex were compared in the absence or presence of antibodies on the apical side of epithelial cells. Antibodies directed against the neurotoxin protected against challenge, but antibodies against HA35 did not. In the final type of experiment, the potency of pure neurotoxin and toxin complex was compared in animals pretreated to deliver antibodies to the basal side of epithelial cells. Once again, antibodies directed against the neurotoxin provided resistance to challenge, but antibodies directed against HA35 did not. Taken collectively, the data indicate that the toxin by itself is capable of crossing epithelial barriers. The data do not support any hypothesis in which HA35 is essential for toxin penetration of epithelial barriers.

  15. Sodium Solute Symporter and Cadherin Proteins Act as Bacillus thuringiensis Cry3Ba Toxin Functional Receptors in Tribolium castaneum*

    Science.gov (United States)

    Contreras, Estefanía; Schoppmeier, Michael; Real, M. Dolores; Rausell, Carolina

    2013-01-01

    Understanding how Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt) toxins interact with proteins in the midgut of susceptible coleopteran insects is crucial to fully explain the molecular bases of Bt specificity and insecticidal action. In this work, aminopeptidase N (TcAPN-I), E-cadherin (TcCad1), and sodium solute symporter (TcSSS) have been identified by ligand blot as putative Cry3Ba toxin-binding proteins in Tribolium castaneum (Tc) larvae. RNA interference knockdown of TcCad1 or TcSSS proteins resulted in decreased susceptibility to Cry3Ba toxin, demonstrating the Cry toxin receptor functionality for these proteins. In contrast, TcAPN-I silencing had no effect on Cry3Ba larval toxicity, suggesting that this protein is not relevant in the Cry3Ba toxin mode of action in Tc. Remarkable features of TcSSS protein were the presence of cadherin repeats in its amino acid sequence and that a TcSSS peptide fragment containing a sequence homologous to a binding epitope found in Manduca sexta and Tenebrio molitor Bt cadherin functional receptors enhanced Cry3Ba toxicity. This is the first time that the involvement of a sodium solute symporter protein as a Bt functional receptor has been demonstrated. The role of this novel receptor in Bt toxicity against coleopteran insects together with the lack of receptor functionality of aminopeptidase N proteins might account for some of the differences in toxin specificity between Lepidoptera and Coleoptera insect orders. PMID:23645668

  16. Inhibition of cholera toxin and other AB toxins by polyphenolic compounds

    Science.gov (United States)

    All AB-type protein toxins have intracellular targets despite an initial extracellular location. These toxins use different methods to reach the cytosol and have different effects on the target cell. Broad-spectrum inhibitors against AB toxins are therefore hard to develop because the toxins use dif...

  17. New tool for spreading proteins to the environment: Cry1Ab toxin immobilized to bioplastics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moldes, Cristina; Farinós, Gema P; de Eugenio, Laura I; García, Pedro; García, José L; Ortego, Félix; Hernández-Crespo, Pedro; Castañera, Pedro; Prieto, María A

    2006-08-01

    A new tool to provide an environmentally friendly way to deliver active proteins to the environment has been developed, based on the use of polyhydroxyalkanoate (PHA, bioplastic) granules. To illustrate this novel approach, a derived Cry1Ab insect-specific toxin protein was in vivo immobilized into PHA granules through the polypeptide tag BioF. The new toxin, named Fk-Bt1, was shown to be active against Sesamia nonagrioides (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae). The dose-mortality responses of the new toxin granule formulation (PFk-Bt1) and purified Cry1Ab have been compared, demonstrating the effectiveness of PFk-Bt1 and suggesting a common mode of action.

  18. Diffusion of Botulinum Toxins

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Matthew A. Brodsky

    2012-08-01

    Full Text Available Background: It is generally agreed that diffusion of botulinum toxin occurs, but the extent of the spread and its clinical importance are disputed. Many factors have been suggested to play a role but which have the most clinical relevance is a subject of much discussion.Methods: This review discusses the variables affecting diffusion, including protein composition and molecular size as well as injection factors (e.g., volume, dose, injection method. It also discusses data on diffusion from comparative studies in animal models and human clinical trials that illustrate differences between the available botulinum toxin products (onabotulinumtoxinA, abobotulinumtoxinA, incobotulinumtoxinA, and rimabotulinumtoxinB.Results: Neither molecular weight nor the presence of complexing proteins appears to affect diffusion; however, injection volume, concentration, and dose all play roles and are modifiable. Both animal and human studies show that botulinum toxin products are not interchangeable, and that some products are associated with greater diffusion and higher rates of diffusion-related adverse events than others.Discussion: Each of the botulinum toxins is a unique pharmacologic entity. A working knowledge of the different serotypes is essential to avoid unwanted diffusion-related adverse events. In addition, clinicians should be aware that the factors influencing diffusion may range from properties intrinsic to the drug to accurate muscle selection as well as dilution, volume, and dose injected.

  19. Augmenting the Efficacy of Immunotoxins and Other Targeted Protein Toxins by Endosomal Escape Enhancers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hendrik Fuchs

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available The toxic moiety of almost all protein-based targeted toxins must enter the cytosol of the target cell to mediate its fatal effect. Although more than 500 targeted toxins have been investigated in the past decades, no antibody-targeted protein toxin has been approved for tumor therapeutic applications by the authorities to date. Missing efficacy can be attributed in many cases to insufficient endosomal escape and therefore subsequent lysosomal degradation of the endocytosed toxins. To overcome this drawback, many strategies have been described to weaken the membrane integrity of endosomes. This comprises the use of lysosomotropic amines, carboxylic ionophores, calcium channel antagonists, various cell-penetrating peptides of viral, bacterial, plant, animal, human and synthetic origin, other organic molecules and light-induced techniques. Although the efficacy of the targeted toxins was typically augmented in cell culture hundred or thousand fold, in exceptional cases more than million fold, the combination of several substances harbors new problems including additional side effects, loss of target specificity, difficulties to determine the therapeutic window and cell type-dependent variations. This review critically scrutinizes the chances and challenges of endosomal escape enhancers and their potential role in future developments.

  20. Characterization, localization and function of pertussis toxin-sensitive G proteins in the nervous systems of Aplysia and Loligo

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Vogel, S.S.

    1989-01-01

    The author has characterized pertussis toxin-sensitive G proteins in the nervous systems of the gastropod mollusc Aplysia and the cephalopod Loligo using [ 32 P]ADP-ribosylation and immunoblotting with G protein specific antisera. As in vertebrates, this class of G protein is associated with membranes and enriched in nervous tissue in Aplysia. Analysis of dissected Aplysia ganglia reveal that it is enriched in neuropil, a region containing most of the central nervous system synapses. Because both Aplysia and Loligo synaptosomes are enriched in pertussis toxin-sensitive G proteins, it is likely that they are found in synaptic terminals. Fractionation of Aplysia synaptosomes into membrane and vesicle fractions reveals that, although the majority of G protein is recovered in the plasma membrane fraction, a small proportion is recovered in the vesicle fraction. He shows that G proteins are on intracellular membranes by ADP-ribosylating extruded axoplasm with pertussis toxin. A plausible explanation for vesicular localization of G protein in axoplasm is that G proteins are transported to terminals on vesicles. He has shown, using ligature experiments with Aplysia connectives and temperature block experiments in the giant axon of Loligo, that G proteins move by anterograde fast axonal transport. Injection of pertussis toxin into the identified Aplysia neuron L10 blocks histamine-induced presynaptic inhibition of transmitter release. This suggests that pertussis toxin sensitive G proteins play a role in modulating transmitter release at synaptic terminals. In the giant synapse of Loligo, he presents preliminary data that demonstrates that the activation of G proteins in the presynaptic terminal results in decreased transmitter release

  1. Regulation of Botulinum Neurotoxin Synthesis and Toxin Complex Formation by Arginine and Glucose in Clostridium botulinum ATCC 3502.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fredrick, Chase M; Lin, Guangyun; Johnson, Eric A

    2017-07-01

    Botulinum neurotoxin (BoNT), produced by neurotoxigenic clostridia, is the most potent biological toxin known and the causative agent of the paralytic disease botulism. The nutritional, environmental, and genetic regulation of BoNT synthesis, activation, stability, and toxin complex (TC) formation is not well studied. Previous studies indicated that growth and BoNT formation were affected by arginine and glucose in Clostridium botulinum types A and B. In the present study, C. botulinum ATCC 3502 was grown in toxin production medium (TPM) with different levels of arginine and glucose and of three products of arginine metabolism, citrulline, proline, and ornithine. Cultures were analyzed for growth (optical density at 600 nm [OD 600 ]), spore formation, and BoNT and TC formation by Western blotting and immunoprecipitation and for BoNT activity by mouse bioassay. A high level of arginine (20 g/liter) repressed BoNT production approximately 1,000-fold, enhanced growth, slowed lysis, and reduced endospore production by greater than 1,000-fold. Similar effects on toxin production were seen with equivalent levels of citrulline but not ornithine or proline. In TPM lacking glucose, levels of formation of BoNT/A1 and TC were significantly decreased, and extracellular BoNT and TC proteins were partially inactivated after the first day of culture. An understanding of the regulation of C. botulinum growth and BoNT and TC formation should be valuable in defining requirements for BoNT formation in foods and clinical samples, improving the quality of BoNT for pharmaceutical preparations, and elucidating the biological functions of BoNTs for the bacterium. IMPORTANCE Botulinum neurotoxin (BoNT) is a major food safety and bioterrorism concern and is also an important pharmaceutical, and yet the regulation of its synthesis, activation, and stability in culture media, foods, and clinical samples is not well understood. This paper provides insights into the effects of critical

  2. Pertussis toxin-sensitive G-protein mediates the alpha 2-adrenergic receptor inhibition of melatonin release in photoreceptive chick pineal cell cultures

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Pratt, B.L.; Takahashi, J.S.

    1988-01-01

    The avian pineal gland is a photoreceptive organ that has been shown to contain postjunctional alpha 2-adrenoceptors that inhibit melatonin synthesis and/or release upon receptor activation. Physiological response and [32P]ADP ribosylation experiments were performed to investigate whether pertussis toxin-sensitive guanine nucleotide-binding proteins (G-proteins) were involved in the transduction of the alpha 2-adrenergic signal. For physiological response studies, the effects of pertussis toxin on melatonin release in dissociated cell cultures exposed to norepinephrine were assessed. Pertussis toxin blocked alpha 2-adrenergic receptor-mediated inhibition in a dose-dependent manner. Pertussis toxin-induced blockade appeared to be noncompetitive. One and 10 ng/ml doses of pertussis toxin partially blocked and a 100 ng/ml dose completely blocked norepinephrine-induced inhibition. Pertussis toxin-catalyzed [32P]ADP ribosylation of G-proteins in chick pineal cell membranes was assessed by sodium dodecyl sulfate-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis and autoradiography. Membranes were prepared from cells that had been pretreated with 0, 1, 10, or 100 ng/ml pertussis toxin. In the absence of pertussis toxin pretreatment, two major proteins of 40K and 41K mol wt (Mr) were labeled by [32P]NAD. Pertussis toxin pretreatment of pineal cells abolished [32P] radiolabeling of the 40K Mr G-protein in a dose-dependent manner. The norepinephrine-induced inhibition of both cAMP efflux and melatonin release, as assessed by RIA of medium samples collected before membrane preparation, was also blocked in a dose-dependent manner by pertussis toxin. Collectively, these results suggest that a pertussis toxin-sensitive 40K Mr G-protein labeled by [32P]NAD may be functionally associated with alpha 2-adrenergic signal transduction in chick pineal cells

  3. A Polychaete's powerful punch: venom gland transcriptomics of Glycera reveals a complex cocktail of toxin homologs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    von Reumont, Björn M; Campbell, Lahcen I; Richter, Sandy; Hering, Lars; Sykes, Dan; Hetmank, Jörg; Jenner, Ronald A; Bleidorn, Christoph

    2014-09-05

    Glycerids are marine annelids commonly known as bloodworms. Bloodworms have an eversible proboscis adorned with jaws connected to venom glands. Bloodworms prey on invertebrates, and it is known that the venom glands produce compounds that can induce toxic effects in animals. Yet, none of these putative toxins has been characterized on a molecular basis. Here we present the transcriptomic profiles of the venom glands of three species of bloodworm, Glycera dibranchiata, Glycera fallax and Glycera tridactyla, as well as the body tissue of G. tridactyla. The venom glands express a complex mixture of transcripts coding for putative toxin precursors. These transcripts represent 20 known toxin classes that have been convergently recruited into animal venoms, as well as transcripts potentially coding for Glycera-specific toxins. The toxins represent five functional categories: Pore-forming and membrane-disrupting toxins, neurotoxins, protease inhibitors, other enzymes, and CAP domain toxins. Many of the transcripts coding for putative Glycera toxins belong to classes that have been widely recruited into venoms, but some are homologs of toxins previously only known from the venoms of scorpaeniform fish and monotremes (stonustoxin-like toxin), turrid gastropods (turripeptide-like peptides), and sea anemones (gigantoxin I-like neurotoxin). This complex mixture of toxin homologs suggests that bloodworms employ venom while predating on macroscopic prey, casting doubt on the previously widespread opinion that G. dibranchiata is a detritivore. Our results further show that researchers should be aware that different assembly methods, as well as different methods of homology prediction, can influence the transcriptomic profiling of venom glands. © The Author(s) 2014. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for Molecular Biology and Evolution.

  4. A Polychaete’s Powerful Punch: Venom Gland Transcriptomics of Glycera Reveals a Complex Cocktail of Toxin Homologs

    Science.gov (United States)

    von Reumont, Björn M.; Richter, Sandy; Hering, Lars; Sykes, Dan; Hetmank, Jörg; Jenner, Ronald A.; Bleidorn, Christoph

    2014-01-01

    Glycerids are marine annelids commonly known as bloodworms. Bloodworms have an eversible proboscis adorned with jaws connected to venom glands. Bloodworms prey on invertebrates, and it is known that the venom glands produce compounds that can induce toxic effects in animals. Yet, none of these putative toxins has been characterized on a molecular basis. Here we present the transcriptomic profiles of the venom glands of three species of bloodworm, Glycera dibranchiata, Glycera fallax and Glycera tridactyla, as well as the body tissue of G. tridactyla. The venom glands express a complex mixture of transcripts coding for putative toxin precursors. These transcripts represent 20 known toxin classes that have been convergently recruited into animal venoms, as well as transcripts potentially coding for Glycera-specific toxins. The toxins represent five functional categories: Pore-forming and membrane-disrupting toxins, neurotoxins, protease inhibitors, other enzymes, and CAP domain toxins. Many of the transcripts coding for putative Glycera toxins belong to classes that have been widely recruited into venoms, but some are homologs of toxins previously only known from the venoms of scorpaeniform fish and monotremes (stonustoxin-like toxin), turrid gastropods (turripeptide-like peptides), and sea anemones (gigantoxin I-like neurotoxin). This complex mixture of toxin homologs suggests that bloodworms employ venom while predating on macroscopic prey, casting doubt on the previously widespread opinion that G. dibranchiata is a detritivore. Our results further show that researchers should be aware that different assembly methods, as well as different methods of homology prediction, can influence the transcriptomic profiling of venom glands. PMID:25193302

  5. An Interbacterial NAD(P)+ Glycohydrolase Toxin Requires Elongation Factor Tu for Delivery to Target Cells

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Whitney, John C.; Quentin, Dennis; Sawai, Shin; LeRoux, Michele; Harding, Brittany N.; Ledvina, Hannah E.; Tran, Bao Q.; Robinson, Howard; Goo, Young Ah; Goodlett, David R.; Raunser, Stefan; Mougous, Joseph D.

    2015-10-08

    Type VI secretion (T6S) influences the composition of microbial communities by catalyzing the delivery of toxins between adjacent bacterial cells. Here, we demonstrate that a T6S integral membrane toxin from Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Tse6, acts on target cells by degrading the universally essential dinucleotides NAD+ and NADP+. Structural analyses of Tse6 show that it resembles mono-ADP-ribosyltransferase proteins, such as diphtheria toxin, with the exception of a unique loop that both excludes proteinaceous ADP-ribose acceptors and contributes to hydrolysis. We find that entry of Tse6 into target cells requires its binding to an essential housekeeping protein, translation elongation factor Tu (EF-Tu). These proteins participate in a larger assembly that additionally directs toxin export and provides chaperone activity. Visualization of this complex by electron microscopy defines the architecture of a toxin-loaded T6S apparatus and provides mechanistic insight into intercellular membrane protein delivery between bacteria.

  6. Growth factor toxin fusion proteins for the treatment of leukemia: Preclinical animal studies relevant for human acute myeloid leukemia

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    H. Rozemuller (Henk)

    1997-01-01

    textabstractIn the development of new therapeutic agents to treat malignancies. bacterial and plant toxins are being investigated. Targeting cells with these toxins has been facilitated by chemical conjugation or genetic engineering of the toxin to proteins with cellular binding potential, such as

  7. Multidrug and toxin extrusion proteins as transporters of antimicrobial drugs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nies, Anne T; Damme, Katja; Schaeffeler, Elke; Schwab, Matthias

    2012-12-01

    Antimicrobial drugs are essential in the treatment of infectious diseases. A better understanding of transport processes involved in drug disposition will improve the predictability of drug-drug interactions with consequences for drug response. Multidrug And Toxin Extrusion (MATE; SLC47A) proteins are efflux transporters mediating the excretion of several antimicrobial drugs as well as other organic compounds into bile and urine, thereby contributing to drug disposition. This review summarizes current knowledge of the structural and molecular features of human MATE transporters including their functional role in drug transport with a specific focus on antimicrobial drugs. The PubMed database was searched using the terms "MATE1," "MATE-2K," "MATE2," "SLC47A1," "SLC47A2," and "toxin extrusion protein" (up to June 2012). MATE proteins have been recognized as important transporters mediating the final excretion step of cationic drugs into bile and urine. These include the antiviral drugs acyclovir, amprenavir, and ganciclovir, the antibiotics cephalexin, cephradine and levofloxacin, as well as the antimalarial agents chloroquine and quinine. It is therefore important to enhance our understanding of the role of MATEs in drug extrusion with particular emphasis on the functional consequences of genetic variants on disposition of these antimicrobial drugs.

  8. The broadly insecticidal Photorhabdus luminescens toxin complex a (Tca): Activity against the Colorado potato beetle, Leptinotarsa decemlineata, and sweet potato whitefly, Bemisia tabaci

    OpenAIRE

    Blackburn, Michael B.; Domek, John M.; Gelman, Dale B.; Hu, Jing S.

    2005-01-01

    Toxin complex a (Tca), a high molecular weight insecticidal protein complex produced by the entomopathogenic bacterium Photorhabdus luminescens, has been found to be orally toxic to both the Colorado potato beetle, Leptinotarsa decemlineata, and the sweet potato whitefly, Bemisia tabaci biotype B. The 48 hour LC50 for Tca against neonate L. decemlineata was found to be 2.7 ppm, and the growth of 2nd instar L. decemlineata exposed to Tca for 72 hours was almost entirely inhibited at concentrat...

  9. Platelet cytosolic 44-kDa protein is a substrate of cholera toxin-induced ADP-ribosylation and is not recognized by antisera against the α subunit of the stimulatory guanine nucleotide-binding regulatory protein

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Molina Y Vedia, L.M.; Reep, B.R.; Lapetina, E.G.

    1988-01-01

    ADP-ribosylation induced by cholera toxin and pertussis toxin was studied in particulate and cytosolic fractions of human platelets. Platelets were disrupted by a cycle of freezing and thawing in the presence of a hyposmotic buffer containing protease inhibitors. In both fractions, the A subunit of cholera toxin ADP-ribosylates two proteins with molecular masses of 42 and 44 kDa, whereas pertussis toxin ADP-ribosylates a 41-kDa polypeptide. Two antisera against the α subunit of the stimulatory guanine nucleotide-binding regulatory protein recognize only the 42-kDa polypeptide. Cholera toxin-induced ADP-ribosylation of the 42- and 44-kDa proteins is reduced by pretreatment of platelets with iloprost, a prostacyclin analog. The 44-kDa protein, which is substrate of cholera toxin, could be extracted completely from the membrane and recovered in the cytosolic fraction when the cells were disrupted by Dounce homogenization and the pellet was extensively washed. A 44-kDa protein can also be labeled with 8-azidoguanosine 5'-[α- 32 P]triphosphate in the cytosol and membranes. These finding indicate that cholera and pertussis toxins produced covalent modifications of proteins present in particulate and cytosolic platelet fractions. Moreover, the 44-kDa protein might be an α subunit of a guanine nucleotide-binding regulatory protein that is not recognized by available antisera

  10. Interaction of Clostridium perfringens epsilon-toxin with biological and model membranes: A putative protein receptor in cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Manni, Marco M; Sot, Jesús; Goñi, Félix M

    2015-03-01

    Epsilon-toxin (ETX) is a powerful toxin produced by some strains of Clostridium perfringens (classified as types B and D) that is responsible for enterotoxemia in animals. ETX forms pores through the plasma membrane of eukaryotic cells, consisting of a β-barrel of 14 amphipathic β-strands. ETX shows a high specificity for certain cell lines, of which Madin-Darby canine kidney (MDCK) is the first sensitive cell line identified and the most studied one. The aim of this study was to establish the role of lipids in the toxicity caused by ETX and the correlation of its activity in model and biological membranes. In MDCK cells, using cell counting and confocal microscopy, we have observed that the toxin causes cell death mediated by toxin binding to plasma membrane. Moreover, ETX binds and permeabilizes the membranes of giant plasma membrane vesicles (GPMV). However, little effect is observed on protein-free vesicles. The data suggest the essential role of a protein receptor for the toxin in cell membranes. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  11. BtoxDB: a comprehensive database of protein structural data on toxin-antitoxin systems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barbosa, Luiz Carlos Bertucci; Garrido, Saulo Santesso; Marchetto, Reinaldo

    2015-03-01

    Toxin-antitoxin (TA) systems are diverse and abundant genetic modules in prokaryotic cells that are typically formed by two genes encoding a stable toxin and a labile antitoxin. Because TA systems are able to repress growth or kill cells and are considered to be important actors in cell persistence (multidrug resistance without genetic change), these modules are considered potential targets for alternative drug design. In this scenario, structural information for the proteins in these systems is highly valuable. In this report, we describe the development of a web-based system, named BtoxDB, that stores all protein structural data on TA systems. The BtoxDB database was implemented as a MySQL relational database using PHP scripting language. Web interfaces were developed using HTML, CSS and JavaScript. The data were collected from the PDB, UniProt and Entrez databases. These data were appropriately filtered using specialized literature and our previous knowledge about toxin-antitoxin systems. The database provides three modules ("Search", "Browse" and "Statistics") that enable searches, acquisition of contents and access to statistical data. Direct links to matching external databases are also available. The compilation of all protein structural data on TA systems in one platform is highly useful for researchers interested in this content. BtoxDB is publicly available at http://www.gurupi.uft.edu.br/btoxdb. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  12. Positive Regulation of Staphylococcal Enterotoxin H by Rot (Repressor of Toxin) Protein and Its Importance in Clonal Complex 81 Subtype 1 Lineage-Related Food Poisoning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sato'o, Yusuke; Hisatsune, Junzo; Nagasako, Yuria; Ono, Hisaya K; Omoe, Katsuhiko; Sugai, Motoyuki

    2015-11-01

    We previously demonstrated the clonal complex 81 (CC81) subtype 1 lineage is the major staphylococcal food poisoning (SFP)-associated lineage in Japan (Y. Sato'o et al., J Clin Microbiol 52:2637-2640, 2014, http://dx.doi.org/10.1128/JCM.00661-14). Strains of this lineage produce staphylococcal enterotoxin H (SEH) in addition to SEA. However, an evaluation of the risk for the recently reported SEH has not been sufficiently conducted. We first searched for staphylococcal enterotoxin (SE) genes and SE proteins in milk samples that caused a large SFP outbreak in Japan. Only SEA and SEH were detected, while there were several SE genes detected in the samples. We next designed an experimental model using a meat product to assess the productivity of SEs and found that only SEA and SEH were detectably produced in situ. Therefore, we investigated the regulation of SEH production using a CC81 subtype 1 isolate. Through mutant analysis of global regulators, we found the repressor of toxin (Rot) functioned oppositely as a stimulator of SEH production. SEA production was not affected by Rot. seh mRNA expression correlated with rot both in media and on the meat product, and the Rot protein was shown to directly bind to the seh promoter. The seh promoter sequence was predicted to form a loop structure and to hide the RNA polymerase binding sequences. We propose Rot binds to the promoter sequence of seh and unfolds the secondary structure that may lead the RNA polymerase to bind the promoter, and then seh mRNA transcription begins. This alternative Rot regulation for SEH may contribute to sufficient toxin production by the CC81 subtype 1 lineage in foods to induce SFP. Copyright © 2015, American Society for Microbiology. All Rights Reserved.

  13. Subtype-specific suppression of Shiga toxin 2 released from Escherichia coli upon exposure to protein synthesis inhibitors

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pedersen, Malene Gantzhorn; Hansen, Claus; Riise, Erik

    2008-01-01

    Shiga toxins (Stx) are important virulence factors in the pathogenesis of severe disease including hemolytic-uremic syndrome, caused by Stx-producing Escherichia coli (STEC). STEC strains increase the release of Stx in vitro following the addition of fluoroquinolones, whereas protein synthesis...... inhibitors previously have been reported to suppress the release of Stx. The amount of Stx released from wild-type STEC strains incubated with protein synthesis inhibitors was examined by a Vero cell cytotoxicity assay. The amounts released were compared to the Stx type (Stx1 or Stx2) and additionally...... to the individual subtypes and toxin variants of Stx2. In general, Stx2 release was suppressed significantly upon exposure to protein synthesis inhibitors at MICs, which was not observed in the case of Stx1. Also, the average amount of different Stx2 toxin variants released was suppressed to various levels ranging...

  14. Escherichia coli Shiga Toxin Mechanisms of Action in Renal Disease

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tom G. Obrig

    2010-12-01

    Full Text Available Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli is a contaminant of food and water that in humans causes a diarrheal prodrome followed by more severe disease of the kidneys and an array of symptoms of the central nervous system. The systemic disease is a complex referred to as diarrhea-associated hemolytic uremic syndrome (D+HUS. D+HUS is characterized by thrombocytopenia, microangiopathic hemolytic anemia, and acute renal failure. This review focuses on the renal aspects of D+HUS. Current knowledge of this renal disease is derived from a combination of human samples, animal models of D+HUS, and interaction of Shiga toxin with isolated renal cell types. Shiga toxin is a multi-subunit protein complex that binds to a glycosphingolipid receptor, Gb3, on select eukaryotic cell types. Location of Gb3 in the kidney is predictive of the sites of action of Shiga toxin. However, the toxin is cytotoxic to some, but not all cell types that express Gb3. It also can cause apoptosis or generate an inflammatory response in some cells. Together, this myriad of results is responsible for D+HUS disease.

  15. Shiga toxin 1 interaction with enterocytes causes apical protein mistargeting through the depletion of intracellular galectin-3

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Laiko, Marina; Murtazina, Rakhilya; Malyukova, Irina [Department of Medicine, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Baltimore, MD 21205 (United States); Zhu, Chengru; Boedeker, Edgar C. [Department of Medicine, University of New Mexico School of Medicine, Albuquerque, NM 87131 (United States); Gutsal, Oksana [Department of Medicine, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Baltimore, MD 21205 (United States); O' Malley, Robert; Cole, Robert N. [Department of Biochemistry, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Baltimore, MD 21205 (United States); Tarr, Phillip I. [Department of Pediatrics, Washington University School of Medicine, St. Louis, MO 63110 (United States); Murray, Karen F. [Department of Pediatrics, Children' s Hospital and Regional Medical Center, Seattle, WA 98105 (United States); Kane, Anne [The Tufts New England Medical Center, Boston, MA 02111 (United States); Donowitz, Mark [Department of Medicine, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Baltimore, MD 21205 (United States); Kovbasnjuk, Olga, E-mail: okovbas1@jhmi.edu [Department of Medicine, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Baltimore, MD 21205 (United States)

    2010-02-15

    Shiga toxins (Stx) 1 and 2 are responsible for intestinal and systemic sequelae of infection by enterohemorrhagic Escherichia coli (EHEC). However, the mechanisms through which enterocytes are damaged remain unclear. While secondary damage from ischemia and inflammation are postulated mechanisms for all intestinal effects, little evidence excludes roles for more primary toxin effects on intestinal epithelial cells. We now document direct pathologic effects of Stx on intestinal epithelial cells. We study a well-characterized rabbit model of EHEC infection, intestinal tissue and stool samples from EHEC-infected patients, and T84 intestinal epithelial cells treated with Stx1. Toxin uptake by intestinal epithelial cells in vitro and in vivo causes galectin-3 depletion from enterocytes by increasing the apical galectin-3 secretion. This Shiga toxin-mediated galectin-3 depletion impairs trafficking of several brush border structural proteins and transporters, including villin, dipeptidyl peptidase IV, and the sodium-proton exchanger 2, a major colonic sodium absorptive protein. The mistargeting of proteins responsible for the absorptive function might be a key event in Stx1-induced diarrhea. These observations provide new evidence that human enterocytes are directly damaged by Stx1. Conceivably, depletion of galectin-3 from enterocytes and subsequent apical protein mistargeting might even provide a means whereby other pathogens might alter intestinal epithelial absorption and produce diarrhea.

  16. The Prediction of Botulinum Toxin Structure Based on in Silico and in Vitro Analysis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Suzuki, Tomonori; Miyazaki, Satoru

    2011-01-01

    Many of biological system mediated through protein-protein interactions. Knowledge of protein-protein complex structure is required for understanding the function. The determination of huge size and flexible protein-protein complex structure by experimental studies remains difficult, costly and five-consuming, therefore computational prediction of protein structures by homolog modeling and docking studies is valuable method. In addition, MD simulation is also one of the most powerful methods allowing to see the real dynamics of proteins. Here, we predict protein-protein complex structure of botulinum toxin to analyze its property. These bioinformatics methods are useful to report the relation between the flexibility of backbone structure and the activity.

  17. Computational Studies of Snake Venom Toxins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ojeda, Paola G; Ramírez, David; Alzate-Morales, Jans; Caballero, Julio; Kaas, Quentin; González, Wendy

    2017-12-22

    Most snake venom toxins are proteins, and participate to envenomation through a diverse array of bioactivities, such as bleeding, inflammation, and pain, cytotoxic, cardiotoxic or neurotoxic effects. The venom of a single snake species contains hundreds of toxins, and the venoms of the 725 species of venomous snakes represent a large pool of potentially bioactive proteins. Despite considerable discovery efforts, most of the snake venom toxins are still uncharacterized. Modern bioinformatics tools have been recently developed to mine snake venoms, helping focus experimental research on the most potentially interesting toxins. Some computational techniques predict toxin molecular targets, and the binding mode to these targets. This review gives an overview of current knowledge on the ~2200 sequences, and more than 400 three-dimensional structures of snake toxins deposited in public repositories, as well as of molecular modeling studies of the interaction between these toxins and their molecular targets. We also describe how modern bioinformatics have been used to study the snake venom protein phospholipase A2, the small basic myotoxin Crotamine, and the three-finger peptide Mambalgin.

  18. Computational Studies of Snake Venom Toxins

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Paola G. Ojeda

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available Most snake venom toxins are proteins, and participate to envenomation through a diverse array of bioactivities, such as bleeding, inflammation, and pain, cytotoxic, cardiotoxic or neurotoxic effects. The venom of a single snake species contains hundreds of toxins, and the venoms of the 725 species of venomous snakes represent a large pool of potentially bioactive proteins. Despite considerable discovery efforts, most of the snake venom toxins are still uncharacterized. Modern bioinformatics tools have been recently developed to mine snake venoms, helping focus experimental research on the most potentially interesting toxins. Some computational techniques predict toxin molecular targets, and the binding mode to these targets. This review gives an overview of current knowledge on the ~2200 sequences, and more than 400 three-dimensional structures of snake toxins deposited in public repositories, as well as of molecular modeling studies of the interaction between these toxins and their molecular targets. We also describe how modern bioinformatics have been used to study the snake venom protein phospholipase A2, the small basic myotoxin Crotamine, and the three-finger peptide Mambalgin.

  19. An albumin-fixed membrane for the removal of protein-bound toxins

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ge Dongtao; Wu Dewang; Shi Wei; Ma Yuanyuan; Tian Xiangdong; Liang Pengfei; Zhang Qiqing

    2006-01-01

    Established methods for kidney dialysis do not work for liver failure because kidney dialysis removes only water-soluble toxins, while the liver normally removes albumin-bound toxins. In the present study, a polysulfone dialysis membrane with a -OH reactive group was prepared by hydrolyzing the chloromethylated polysulfone membrane, and the bovine serum albumin molecules were fixed into the membrane with 1,1'-carbonyldiimidazole activation. The content of albumin of the albumin-fixed membrane was 121.3 mg (g membrane) -1 . The albumin-fixed dialysis membranes were used to remove protein-bound toxins, bilirubin, from the bilirubin-albumin solution. The transfer rate of bilirubin of the albumin-fixed membrane was obviously higher compared to the normal dialysis membrane. The clearance of bilirubin with the albumin-fixed membrane was 49.8%. The albumin-fixed membrane can easily be regenerated by the bovine serum albumin and NaOH solution. Regeneration of the membrane suggested good mechanical and chemical stability, as well as good clearance of bilirubin. In addition, the effects of membrane thickness and bilirubin initial concentration on the removal of bilirubin were discussed

  20. Cholera toxin-induced ADP-ribosylation of a 46 kDa protein is decreased in brains of ethanol-fed mice

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Nhamburo, P.T.; Hoffman, P.L.; Tabakoff, B.

    1988-01-01

    The acute in vitro effects of ethanol on cerebral cortical adenylate cyclase activity and beta-adrenergic receptor characteristics suggested a site of action of ethanol at Gs, the stimulatory guanine nucleotide binding protein. After chronic ethanol ingestion, the beta-adrenergic receptor appeared to be uncoupled (i.e., the form of the receptor with high affinity for agonist was undetectable), and stimulation of adenylate cyclase activity by isoproterenol or guanine nucleotides was reduced, suggesting an alteration in the properties of Gs. To further characterize this change, cholera and pertussis toxin-mediated 32 P-ADP-ribosylation of mouse cortical membranes was assessed in mice that had chronically ingested ethanol in a liquid diet. 32 P-labeled proteins were separated by SDS-PAGE and quantitated by autoradiography. There was a selective 30-50% decrease in cholera toxin-induced labeling of 46 kDa protein band in membranes of ethanol-fed mice, with no apparent change in pertussis toxin-induced labeling. The 46 kDa protein has a molecular weight similar to that of the alpha subunit of Gs, suggesting a reduced amount of this protein or a change in its characteristics as a substrate for cholera toxin-induced ADP-ribosylation in cortical membranes of ethanol-fed mice

  1. Endoplasmic Reticulum-Targeted Subunit Toxins Provide a New Approach to Rescue Misfolded Mutant Proteins and Revert Cell Models of Genetic Diseases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adnan, Humaira; Zhang, Zhenbo; Park, Hyun-Joo; Tailor, Chetankumar; Che, Clare; Kamani, Mustafa; Spitalny, George; Binnington, Beth; Lingwood, Clifford

    2016-01-01

    Many germ line diseases stem from a relatively minor disturbance in mutant protein endoplasmic reticulum (ER) 3D assembly. Chaperones are recruited which, on failure to correct folding, sort the mutant for retrotranslocation and cytosolic proteasomal degradation (ER-associated degradation-ERAD), to initiate/exacerbate deficiency-disease symptoms. Several bacterial (and plant) subunit toxins, retrograde transport to the ER after initial cell surface receptor binding/internalization. The A subunit has evolved to mimic a misfolded protein and hijack the ERAD membrane translocon (dislocon), to effect cytosolic access and cytopathology. We show such toxins compete for ERAD to rescue endogenous misfolded proteins. Cholera toxin or verotoxin (Shiga toxin) containing genetically inactivated (± an N-terminal polyleucine tail) A subunit can, within 2-4 hrs, temporarily increase F508delCFTR protein, the major cystic fibrosis (CF) mutant (5-10x), F508delCFTR Golgi maturation (glucocerobrosidase (GCC) in N370SGCC Gaucher Disease fibroblasts (3x), another ERAD-exacerbated misfiling disease. We identify a new, potentially benign approach to the treatment of certain genetic protein misfolding diseases.

  2. Marine Toxins That Target Voltage-gated Sodium Channels

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Robert J. French

    2006-04-01

    Full Text Available Abstract: Eukaryotic, voltage-gated sodium (NaV channels are large membrane proteins which underlie generation and propagation of rapid electrical signals in nerve, muscle and heart. Nine different NaV receptor sites, for natural ligands and/or drugs, have been identified, based on functional analyses and site-directed mutagenesis. In the marine ecosystem, numerous toxins have evolved to disrupt NaV channel function, either by inhibition of current flow through the channels, or by modifying the activation and inactivation gating processes by which the channels open and close. These toxins function in their native environment as offensive or defensive weapons in prey capture or deterrence of predators. In composition, they range from organic molecules of varying size and complexity to peptides consisting of ~10-70 amino acids. We review the variety of known NaV-targeted marine toxins, outlining, where known, their sites of interaction with the channel protein and their functional effects. In a number of cases, these natural ligands have the potential applications as drugs in clinical settings, or as models for drug development.

  3. Channels Formed by Botulinum, Tetanus, and Diphtheria Toxins in Planar Lipid Bilayers: Relevance to Translocation of Proteins across Membranes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hoch, David H.; Romero-Mira, Miryam; Ehrlich, Barbara E.; Finkelstein, Alan; Dasgupta, Bibhuti R.; Simpson, Lance L.

    1985-03-01

    The heavy chains of both botulinum neurotoxin type B and tetanus toxin form channels in planar bilayer membranes. These channels have pH-dependent and voltage-dependent properties that are remarkably similar to those previously described for diphtheria toxin. Selectivity experiments with anions and cations show that the channels formed by the heavy chains of all three toxins are large; thus, these channels could serve as ``tunnel proteins'' for translocation of active peptide fragments. These findings support the hypothesis that the active fragments of botulinum neurotoxin and tetanus toxin, like that of diphtheria toxin, are translocated across the membranes of acidic vesicles.

  4. The botulinum toxin as a therapeutic agent: molecular and pharmacological insights

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kukreja R

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available Roshan Kukreja,1 Bal Ram Singh2 1Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, University of Massachusetts, 2Botulinum Research Center, Institute of Advanced Sciences, Dartmouth, MA, USA Abstract: Botulinum neurotoxins (BoNTs, the most potent toxins known to mankind, are metalloproteases that act on nerve–muscle junctions to block exocytosis through a very specific and exclusive endopeptidase activity against soluble N-ethylmaleimide-sensitive factor attachment protein receptor (SNARE proteins of presynaptic vesicle fusion machinery. This very ability of the toxins to produce flaccid muscle paralysis through chemical denervation has been put to good use, and these potentially lethal toxins have been licensed to treat an ever expanding list of medical disorders and more popularly in the field of esthetic medicine. In most cases, therapeutic BoNT preparations are high-molecular-weight protein complexes consisting of BoNT, complexing proteins, and excipients. There is at least one isolated BoNT, which is free of complexing proteins in the market (Xeomin®. Each commercially available BoNT formulation is unique, differing mainly in molecular size and composition of complexing proteins, biological activity, and antigenicity. BoNT serotype A is marketed as Botox®, Dysport®, and Xeomin®, while BoNT type B is commercially available as Myobloc®. Nerve terminal intoxication by BoNTs is completely reversible, and the duration of therapeutic effects of BoNTs varies for different serotypes. Depending on the target tissue, BoNTs can block the cholinergic neuromuscular or cholinergic autonomic innervation of exocrine glands and smooth muscles. Therapeutic BoNTs exhibit a high safety and very limited adverse effects profile. Despite their established efficacy, the greatest concern with the use of therapeutic BoNTs is their propensity to elicit immunogenic reactions that might render the patient unresponsive to subsequent treatments, particularly in chronic

  5. Pertussis toxin treatment of whole blood. A novel approach to assess G protein function in congestive heart failure

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Maisel, A. S.; Michel, M. C.; Insel, P. A.; Ennis, C.; Ziegler, M. G.; Phillips, C.

    1990-01-01

    This study was designed to assess G protein function in mononuclear leukocytes (MNL) of patients with congestive heart failure (CHF). MNL membranes were ADP-ribosylated in vitro in the presence of pertussis or cholera toxin. The amount of pertussis toxin substrates did not differ significantly

  6. SVM-based prediction of propeptide cleavage sites in spider toxins identifies toxin innovation in an Australian tarantula.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Emily S W Wong

    Full Text Available Spider neurotoxins are commonly used as pharmacological tools and are a popular source of novel compounds with therapeutic and agrochemical potential. Since venom peptides are inherently toxic, the host spider must employ strategies to avoid adverse effects prior to venom use. It is partly for this reason that most spider toxins encode a protective proregion that upon enzymatic cleavage is excised from the mature peptide. In order to identify the mature toxin sequence directly from toxin transcripts, without resorting to protein sequencing, the propeptide cleavage site in the toxin precursor must be predicted bioinformatically. We evaluated different machine learning strategies (support vector machines, hidden Markov model and decision tree and developed an algorithm (SpiderP for prediction of propeptide cleavage sites in spider toxins. Our strategy uses a support vector machine (SVM framework that combines both local and global sequence information. Our method is superior or comparable to current tools for prediction of propeptide sequences in spider toxins. Evaluation of the SVM method on an independent test set of known toxin sequences yielded 96% sensitivity and 100% specificity. Furthermore, we sequenced five novel peptides (not used to train the final predictor from the venom of the Australian tarantula Selenotypus plumipes to test the accuracy of the predictor and found 80% sensitivity and 99.6% 8-mer specificity. Finally, we used the predictor together with homology information to predict and characterize seven groups of novel toxins from the deeply sequenced venom gland transcriptome of S. plumipes, which revealed structural complexity and innovations in the evolution of the toxins. The precursor prediction tool (SpiderP is freely available on ArachnoServer (http://www.arachnoserver.org/spiderP.html, a web portal to a comprehensive relational database of spider toxins. All training data, test data, and scripts used are available from

  7. Crystallization of the HigBA2 toxin-antitoxin complex from Vibrio cholerae

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hadǽi, San; Garcia-Pino, Abel; Martinez-Rodriguez, Sergio

    2013-01-01

    The genome of Vibrio cholerae encodes two higBA toxin-antitoxin (TA) modules that are activated by amino-acid starvation. Here, the TA complex of the second module, higBA2, as well as the C-terminal domain of the corresponding HigA2 antitoxin, have been purified and crystallized. The HigBA2 compl...

  8. Computational Studies of Snake Venom Toxins

    OpenAIRE

    Paola G. Ojeda; David Ramírez; Jans Alzate-Morales; Julio Caballero; Quentin Kaas; Wendy González

    2017-01-01

    Most snake venom toxins are proteins, and participate to envenomation through a diverse array of bioactivities, such as bleeding, inflammation, and pain, cytotoxic, cardiotoxic or neurotoxic effects. The venom of a single snake species contains hundreds of toxins, and the venoms of the 725 species of venomous snakes represent a large pool of potentially bioactive proteins. Despite considerable discovery efforts, most of the snake venom toxins are still uncharacterized. Modern bioinformatics t...

  9. Conditional Toxin Splicing Using a Split Intein System.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alford, Spencer C; O'Sullivan, Connor; Howard, Perry L

    2017-01-01

    Protein toxin splicing mediated by split inteins can be used as a strategy for conditional cell ablation. The approach requires artificial fragmentation of a potent protein toxin and tethering each toxin fragment to a split intein fragment. The toxin-intein fragments are, in turn, fused to dimerization domains, such that addition of a dimerizing agent reconstitutes the split intein. These chimeric toxin-intein fusions remain nontoxic until the dimerizer is added, resulting in activation of intein splicing and ligation of toxin fragments to form an active toxin. Considerations for the engineering and implementation of conditional toxin splicing (CTS) systems include: choice of toxin split site, split site (extein) chemistry, and temperature sensitivity. The following method outlines design criteria and implementation notes for CTS using a previously engineered system for splicing a toxin called sarcin, as well as for developing alternative CTS systems.

  10. Keeping the wolves at bay: antitoxins of prokaryotic type II toxin-antitoxin systems

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wai Ting eChan

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available In their initial stages of discovery, prokaryotic toxin-antitoxin (TA systems were confined to bacterial plasmids where they function to mediate the maintenance and stability of usually low- to medium-copy number plasmids through the post-segregational killing of any plasmid-free daughter cells that developed. Their eventual discovery as nearly ubiquitous and repetitive elements in bacterial chromosomes led to a wealth of knowledge and scientific debate as to their diversity and functionality in the prokaryotic lifestyle. Currently categorized into six different types designated types I – VI, type II TA systems are the best characterized. These generally comprised of two genes encoding a proteic toxin and its corresponding proteic antitoxin, respectively. Under normal growth conditions, the stable toxin is prevented from exerting its lethal effect through tight binding with the less stable antitoxin partner, forming a non-lethal TA protein complex. Besides binding with its cognate toxin, the antitoxin also plays a role in regulating the expression of the type II TA operon by binding to the operator site, thereby repressing transcription from the TA promoter. In most cases, full repression is observed in the presence of the TA complex as binding of the toxin enhances the DNA binding capability of the antitoxin. TA systems have been implicated in a gamut of prokaryotic cellular functions such as being mediators of programmed cell death as well as persistence or dormancy, biofilm formation, as defensive weapons against bacteriophage infections and as virulence factors in pathogenic bacteria. It is thus apparent that these antitoxins, as DNA-binding proteins, play an essential role in modulating the prokaryotic lifestyle whilst at the same time preventing the lethal action of the toxins under normal growth conditions, i.e., keeping the proverbial wolves at bay. In this review, we will cover the diversity and characteristics of various type II TA

  11. YeeV is an Escherichia coli toxin that inhibits cell division by targeting the cytoskeleton proteins, FtsZ and MreB.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tan, Qian; Awano, Naoki; Inouye, Masayori

    2011-01-01

    Toxin-antitoxin (TA) systems of free-living bacteria have recently demonstrated that these toxins inhibit cell growth by targeting essential functions of cellular metabolism. Here we show that YeeV toxin inhibits cell division, leads to a change in morphology and lysis of Escherichia coli cells. YeeV interacts with two essential cytoskeleton proteins, FtsZ and MreB. Purified YeeV inhibits both the GTPase activity and the GTP-dependent polymerization of FtsZ. YeeV also inhibits ATP-dependent polymerization of MreB. Truncated C-terminal deletions of YeeV result in elongation of cells, and a deletion of the first 15 amino acids from the N-terminus of YeeV caused lemon-shaped cell formation. The YeeV toxin is distinct from other well-studied toxins: it directs the binding of two cytoskeletal proteins and inhibits FtsZ and MreB simultaneously. © 2010 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

  12. Lymphocyte receptors for pertussis toxin

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Clark, C.G.; Armstrong, G.D. (Univ. of Alberta, Edmonton (Canada))

    1990-12-01

    We have investigated human T-lymphocyte receptors for pertussis toxin by affinity isolation and photoaffinity labeling procedures. T lymphocytes were obtained from peripheral human blood, surface iodinated, and solubilized in Triton X-100. The iodinated mixture was then passed through pertussis toxin-agarose, and the fractions were analyzed by sodium dodecyl sulfate-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis. Autoradiography of the fixed, dried gels revealed several bands in the pertussis toxin-bound fraction that were not observed in fractions obtained from histone or fetuin-agarose. Further investigations employed a photoaffinity labeling reagent, sulfosuccinimidyl 2-(p-azido-salicylamido)-1,3'-dithiopropionate, to identify pertussis toxin receptors in freshly isolated peripheral blood monocytic cells, T lymphocytes, and Jurkat cells. In all three cell systems, the pertussis toxin affinity probe specifically labeled a single protein species with an apparent molecular weight of 70,000 that was not observed when the procedure was performed in the presence of excess unmodified pertussis toxin. A protein comparable in molecular weight to the one detected by the photoaffinity labeling technique was also observed among the species that bound to pertussis toxin-agarose. The results suggest that pertussis toxin may bind to a 70,000-Da receptor in human T lymphocytes.

  13. Radiolabelling of cholera toxin

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Santos, R.G.; Neves, Nicoli M.J.; Abdalla, L.F.; Brandao, R.L.; Etchehebehere, L.; Lima, M.E. de; Nicoli, J.R.

    1999-01-01

    Binding of cholera toxin to ganglioside receptors of enterocyte microvilli catalyzes the activation of adenylate cyclase causing a rise in cAMP which final result is a copious diarrhea. Saccharomyces boulardii, a nonpathogenic yeast has been used to prevent diarrhea. Although the antidiarrheic properties of S. boulardii are widely recognized, this yeast has been used on empirical basis, and the mechanism of this protective effect is unknown. The addition of cholera toxin to S. boulardii induces the raising of cAMP that triggers the activation of neutral trehalase. This suggests that toxin specifically binding to cells, is internalized and active the protein phosphorylation cascade. Our objective is labeling the cholera toxin to verify the presence of binding sites on yeast cell surfaces for the cholera toxin. Cholera toxin was radiolabelled with Na 125 I by a chloramine-T method modified from Cuatrecasas and Griffiths et alii. The 125 I-Cholera toxin showed a specific radioactivity at about 1000 cpm/fmol toxin. Biological activity of labeled cholera toxin measured by trehalase activation was similar to the native toxin. (author)

  14. Deficiency of toxin-binding protein activity in mutants of sugarcane clone H54-775 as it relates to disease resistance

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Strobel, G.A.; Steiner, G.W.; Byther, R.

    1975-01-01

    Three mutants selected from a population of sugarcane clone H54-775 that had been irradiated with 3 kR γ-radiation all lacked toxin-binding protein activity. This activity previously had been shown to be essential for eye spot disease susceptibility and was demonstrated in the susceptible parent clone H54-775. In one mutant, the biochemical, immunochemical, and electrophoretic mobilities of the toxin-binding protein were all modified

  15. PirAB protein from Xenorhabdus nematophila HB310 exhibits a binary toxin with insecticidal activity and cytotoxicity in Galleria mellonella.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Qing; Zhang, Jie; Li, Tianhui; Liu, Shen; Song, Ping; Nangong, Ziyan; Wang, Qinying

    2017-09-01

    PirAB (Photorhabdus insect-related proteins, PirAB) toxin was initially found in the Photorhabdus luminescens TT01 strain and has been shown to be a binary toxin with high insecticidal activity. Based on GenBank data, this gene was also found in the Xenorhabdus nematophila genome sequence. The predicted amino acid sequence of pirA and pirB in the genome of X. nematophila showed 51% and 50% identity with those gene sequences from P. luminescens. The purpose of this experiment is to identify the relevant information for this toxin gene in X. nematophila. The pirA, pirB and pirAB genes of X. nematophila HB310 were cloned and expressed in Escherichia coli BL21 (DE3) using the pET-28a vector. A PirAB-fusion protein (PirAB-F) was constructed by linking the pirA and pirB genes with the flexible linker (Gly) 4 DNA encoding sequence and then efficiently expressed in E. coli. The hemocoel and oral insecticidal activities of the recombinant proteins were analyzed against the larvae of Galleria mellonella. The results show that PirA/B alone, PirA/B mixture, co-expressed PirAB protein, and PirAB-F all had no oral insecticidal activity against the second-instar larvae of G. mellonella. Only PirA/B mixture and co-expressed PirAB protein had hemocoel insecticidal activity against G. mellonella fifth-instar larvae, with an LD 50 of 2.718μg/larva or 1.566μg/larva, respectively. Therefore, we confirmed that PirAB protein of X. nematophila HB310 is a binary insecticidal toxin. The successful expression and purification of PirAB laid a foundation for further studies on the function, insecticidal mechanism and expression regulation of the binary toxin. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  16. Endoplasmic Reticulum-Targeted Subunit Toxins Provide a New Approach to Rescue Misfolded Mutant Proteins and Revert Cell Models of Genetic Diseases.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Humaira Adnan

    Full Text Available Many germ line diseases stem from a relatively minor disturbance in mutant protein endoplasmic reticulum (ER 3D assembly. Chaperones are recruited which, on failure to correct folding, sort the mutant for retrotranslocation and cytosolic proteasomal degradation (ER-associated degradation-ERAD, to initiate/exacerbate deficiency-disease symptoms. Several bacterial (and plant subunit toxins, retrograde transport to the ER after initial cell surface receptor binding/internalization. The A subunit has evolved to mimic a misfolded protein and hijack the ERAD membrane translocon (dislocon, to effect cytosolic access and cytopathology. We show such toxins compete for ERAD to rescue endogenous misfolded proteins. Cholera toxin or verotoxin (Shiga toxin containing genetically inactivated (± an N-terminal polyleucine tail A subunit can, within 2-4 hrs, temporarily increase F508delCFTR protein, the major cystic fibrosis (CF mutant (5-10x, F508delCFTR Golgi maturation (<10x, cell surface expression (20x and chloride transport (2x in F508del CFTR transfected cells and patient-derived F508delCFTR bronchiolar epithelia, without apparent cytopathology. These toxoids also increase glucocerobrosidase (GCC in N370SGCC Gaucher Disease fibroblasts (3x, another ERAD-exacerbated misfiling disease. We identify a new, potentially benign approach to the treatment of certain genetic protein misfolding diseases.

  17. Channels formed by botulinum, tetanus, and diphtheria toxins in planar lipid bilayers: relevance to translocation of proteins across membranes.

    OpenAIRE

    Hoch, D H; Romero-Mira, M; Ehrlich, B E; Finkelstein, A; DasGupta, B R; Simpson, L L

    1985-01-01

    The heavy chains of both botulinum neurotoxin type B and tetanus toxin form channels in planar bilayer membranes. These channels have pH-dependent and voltage-dependent properties that are remarkably similar to those previously described for diphtheria toxin. Selectivity experiments with anions and cations show that the channels formed by the heavy chains of all three toxins are large; thus, these channels could serve as "tunnel proteins" for translocation of active peptide fragments. These f...

  18. Crystallization and preliminary X-ray analysis of a novel haemagglutinin component of the toxin complex of serotype C Clostridium botulinum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hayashi, Shintaro; Akiyama, Tomonori; Sagane, Yoshimasa; Miyashita, Shin-Ichiro; Watanabe, Toshihiro; Yajima, Shunsuke; Niwa, Koichi

    2014-03-01

    The botulinum toxin complex, the causative agent of botulism, passes through the intestinal wall via sugar-chain-dependent cell binding of a haemagglutinin of 33 kDa molecular weight (HA-33). The amino-acid sequence of the C-terminal half of HA-33 of the serotype C strain Yoichi (C-Yoichi) shares only 46% identity with those of the major serotype C strains. Additionally, C-Yoichi HA-33 exhibits a unique sugar-binding specificity. In the present work, C-Yoichi HA-33 was expressed in Escherichia coli and crystallized. Diffraction data were collected at a resolution of 2.2 Å. The crystals belonged to space group R3. The complete detailed protein structure will yield insight into how the unique HA-33 protein recognizes sugar moieties.

  19. Rationally designed chemokine-based toxin targeting the viral G protein-coupled receptor US28 potently inhibits cytomegalovirus infection in vivo

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Spiess, Katja; Jeppesen, Mads G.; Malmgaard-Clausen, Mikkel

    2015-01-01

    The use of receptor-ligand interactions to direct toxins to kill diseased cells selectively has shown considerable promise for treatment of a number of cancers and, more recently, autoimmune disease. Here we move the fusion toxin protein (FTP) technology beyond cancer/autoimmune therapeutics to t...

  20. Radiolabelling of cholera toxin

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Santos, R.G.; Neves, Nicoli M.J. [Centro de Desenvolvimento da Tecnologia Nuclear (CDTN), Belo Horizonte, MG (Brazil); Abdalla, L.F.; Brandao, R.L.; Etchehebehere, L. [Ouro Preto Univ., MG (Brazil). Escola de Farmacia. Lab. de Fisiologia e Bioquimica de Microorganismos; Lima, M.E. de [Minas Gerais Univ., Belo Horizonte, MG (Brazil). Inst. de Ciencias Biologicas. Dept. de Bioquimica e Imunologia; Nicoli, J.R. [Minas Gerais Univ., Belo Horizonte, MG (Brazil). Inst. de Ciencias Biologicas. Dept. de Microbiologia

    1999-11-01

    Binding of cholera toxin to ganglioside receptors of enterocyte microvilli catalyzes the activation of adenylate cyclase causing a rise in cAMP which final result is a copious diarrhea. Saccharomyces boulardii, a nonpathogenic yeast has been used to prevent diarrhea. Although the antidiarrheic properties of S. boulardii are widely recognized, this yeast has been used on empirical basis, and the mechanism of this protective effect is unknown. The addition of cholera toxin to S. boulardii induces the raising of cAMP that triggers the activation of neutral trehalase. This suggests that toxin specifically binding to cells, is internalized and active the protein phosphorylation cascade. Our objective is labeling the cholera toxin to verify the presence of binding sites on yeast cell surfaces for the cholera toxin. Cholera toxin was radiolabelled with Na {sup 125} I by a chloramine-T method modified from Cuatrecasas and Griffiths et alii. The {sup 125} I-Cholera toxin showed a specific radioactivity at about 1000 cpm/fmol toxin. Biological activity of labeled cholera toxin measured by trehalase activation was similar to the native toxin. (author) 5 refs., 3 figs.; e-mail: nevesmj at urano.cdtn.br

  1. A heteromeric snake toxin and the molecular details of pain perception

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Strømgaard, Kristian; Kristensen, Anders Skov

    2012-01-01

    Gaining on pain: Two snake protein toxins combine to form a heteromeric complex, MitTx, which activates acid-sensing ion channels (ASICs) and elicits pain. MitTx is used to explore the roles of specific ASIC subtypes in pain pathways. These insights may provide new pharmacological tools ultimately...

  2. Brown Spider (Loxosceles genus Venom Toxins: Tools for Biological Purposes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrea Senff-Ribeiro

    2011-03-01

    Full Text Available Venomous animals use their venoms as tools for defense or predation. These venoms are complex mixtures, mainly enriched of proteic toxins or peptides with several, and different, biological activities. In general, spider venom is rich in biologically active molecules that are useful in experimental protocols for pharmacology, biochemistry, cell biology and immunology, as well as putative tools for biotechnology and industries. Spider venoms have recently garnered much attention from several research groups worldwide. Brown spider (Loxosceles genus venom is enriched in low molecular mass proteins (5–40 kDa. Although their venom is produced in minute volumes (a few microliters, and contain only tens of micrograms of protein, the use of techniques based on molecular biology and proteomic analysis has afforded rational projects in the area and permitted the discovery and identification of a great number of novel toxins. The brown spider phospholipase-D family is undoubtedly the most investigated and characterized, although other important toxins, such as low molecular mass insecticidal peptides, metalloproteases and hyaluronidases have also been identified and featured in literature. The molecular pathways of the action of these toxins have been reported and brought new insights in the field of biotechnology. Herein, we shall see how recent reports describing discoveries in the area of brown spider venom have expanded biotechnological uses of molecules identified in these venoms, with special emphasis on the construction of a cDNA library for venom glands, transcriptome analysis, proteomic projects, recombinant expression of different proteic toxins, and finally structural descriptions based on crystallography of toxins.

  3. Toxin-Based Therapeutic Approaches

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shapira, Assaf; Benhar, Itai

    2010-01-01

    Protein toxins confer a defense against predation/grazing or a superior pathogenic competence upon the producing organism. Such toxins have been perfected through evolution in poisonous animals/plants and pathogenic bacteria. Over the past five decades, a lot of effort has been invested in studying their mechanism of action, the way they contribute to pathogenicity and in the development of antidotes that neutralize their action. In parallel, many research groups turned to explore the pharmaceutical potential of such toxins when they are used to efficiently impair essential cellular processes and/or damage the integrity of their target cells. The following review summarizes major advances in the field of toxin based therapeutics and offers a comprehensive description of the mode of action of each applied toxin. PMID:22069564

  4. Production and purification of immunologically active core protein p24 from HIV-1 fused to ricin toxin B subunit in E. coli

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gómez-Lim Miguel A

    2009-02-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Gag protein from HIV-1 is a polyprotein of 55 kDa, which, during viral maturation, is cleaved to release matrix p17, core p24 and nucleocapsid proteins. The p24 antigen contains epitopes that prime helper CD4 T-cells, which have been demonstrated to be protective and it can elicit lymphocyte proliferation. Thus, p24 is likely to be an integral part of any multicomponent HIV vaccine. The availability of an optimal adjuvant and carrier to enhance antiviral responses may accelerate the development of a vaccine candidate against HIV. The aim of this study was to investigate the adjuvant-carrier properties of the B ricin subunit (RTB when fused to p24. Results A fusion between ricin toxin B subunit and p24 HIV (RTB/p24 was expressed in E. coli. Affinity chromatography was used for purification of p24 alone and RTB/p24 from cytosolic fractions. Biological activity of RTB/p24 was determined by ELISA and affinity chromatography using the artificial receptor glycoprotein asialofetuin. Both assays have demonstrated that RTB/p24 is able to interact with complex sugars, suggesting that the chimeric protein retains lectin activity. Also, RTB/p24 was demonstrated to be immunologically active in mice. Two weeks after intraperitoneal inoculation with RTB/p24 without an adjuvant, a strong anti-p24 immune response was detected. The levels of the antibodies were comparable to those found in mice immunized with p24 alone in the presence of Freund adjuvant. RTB/p24 inoculated intranasally in mice, also elicited significant immune responses to p24, although the response was not as strong as that obtained in mice immunized with p24 in the presence of the mucosal adjuvant cholera toxin. Conclusion In this work, we report the expression in E. coli of HIV-1 p24 fused to the subunit B of ricin toxin. The high levels of antibodies obtained after intranasal and intraperitoneal immunization of mice demonstrate the adjuvant-carrier properties of RTB when

  5. Clostridial Binary Toxins: Iota and C2 Family Portraits

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stiles, Bradley G.; Wigelsworth, Darran J.; Popoff, Michel R.; Barth, Holger

    2011-01-01

    There are many pathogenic Clostridium species with diverse virulence factors that include protein toxins. Some of these bacteria, such as C. botulinum, C. difficile, C. perfringens, and C. spiroforme, cause enteric problems in animals as well as humans. These often fatal diseases can partly be attributed to binary protein toxins that follow a classic AB paradigm. Within a targeted cell, all clostridial binary toxins destroy filamentous actin via mono-ADP-ribosylation of globular actin by the A component. However, much less is known about B component binding to cell-surface receptors. These toxins share sequence homology amongst themselves and with those produced by another Gram-positive, spore-forming bacterium also commonly associated with soil and disease: Bacillus anthracis. This review focuses upon the iota and C2 families of clostridial binary toxins and includes: (1) basics of the bacterial source; (2) toxin biochemistry; (3) sophisticated cellular uptake machinery; and (4) host–cell responses following toxin-mediated disruption of the cytoskeleton. In summary, these protein toxins aid diverse enteric species within the genus Clostridium. PMID:22919577

  6. Infectious polymorphic toxins delivered by outer membrane exchange discriminate kin in myxobacteria.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vassallo, Christopher N; Cao, Pengbo; Conklin, Austin; Finkelstein, Hayley; Hayes, Christopher S; Wall, Daniel

    2017-08-18

    Myxobacteria are known for complex social behaviors including outer membrane exchange (OME), in which cells exchange large amounts of outer membrane lipids and proteins upon contact. The TraA cell surface receptor selects OME partners based on a variable domain. However, traA polymorphism alone is not sufficient to precisely discriminate kin. Here, we report a novel family of OME-delivered toxins that promote kin discrimination of OME partners. These SitA lipoprotein toxins are polymorphic and widespread in myxobacteria. Each sitA is associated with a cognate sitI immunity gene, and in some cases a sitB accessory gene. Remarkably, we show that SitA is transferred serially between target cells, allowing the toxins to move cell-to-cell like an infectious agent. Consequently, SitA toxins define strong identity barriers between strains and likely contribute to population structure, maintenance of cooperation, and strain diversification. Moreover, these results highlight the diversity of systems evolved to deliver toxins between bacteria.

  7. Lipid reorganization induced by Shiga toxin clustering on planar membranes.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Barbara Windschiegl

    Full Text Available The homopentameric B-subunit of bacterial protein Shiga toxin (STxB binds to the glycolipid Gb(3 in plasma membranes, which is the initial step for entering cells by a clathrin-independent mechanism. It has been suggested that protein clustering and lipid reorganization determine toxin uptake into cells. Here, we elucidated the molecular requirements for STxB induced Gb(3 clustering and for the proposed lipid reorganization in planar membranes. The influence of binding site III of the B-subunit as well as the Gb(3 lipid structure was investigated by means of high resolution methods such as fluorescence and scanning force microscopy. STxB was found to form protein clusters on homogenous 1,2-dioleoyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphocholine (DOPC/cholesterol/Gb(3 (65:30:5 bilayers. In contrast, membranes composed of DOPC/cholesterol/sphingomyelin/Gb(3 (40:35:20:5 phase separate into a liquid ordered and liquid disordered phase. Dependent on the fatty acid composition of Gb(3, STxB-Gb(3 complexes organize within the liquid ordered phase upon protein binding. Our findings suggest that STxB is capable of forming a new membrane phase that is characterized by lipid compaction. The significance of this finding is discussed in the context of Shiga toxin-induced formation of endocytic membrane invaginations.

  8. Mutant with diphtheria toxin receptor and acidification function but defective in entry of toxin

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kohno, Kenji; Hayes, H.; Mekada, Eisuke; Uchida, Tsuyoshi

    1987-01-01

    A mutant of Chinese hamster ovary cells, GE1, that is highly resistant to diphtheria toxin was isolated. The mutant contains 50% ADP-ribosylatable elongation factor 2, but its protein synthesis was not inhibited by the toxin even at concentrations above 100 μg/ml. 125 I-labeled diphtheria toxin was associated with GE1 cells as well as with the parent cells but did not block protein synthesis of GE1 cells even when the cells were exposed to low pH in the presence or absence of NH 4 Cl. The infections of GE1 cells and the parent cells by vesicular stomatitis virus were similar. GE1 cells were cross-resistant to Pseudomonas aeruginosa exotoxin A and so were about 1,000 times more resistant to this toxin than the parent cells. Hybrids of GE1 cells and the parent cells or mutant cells lacking a functional receptor were more sensitive to diphtheria toxin than GE1 cells. These results suggest that entry of diphtheria toxin into cells requires a cellular factor(s) in addition to those involved in receptor function and acidification of endosomes and that GE1 cells do not express this cellular factor. This character is recessive in GE1 cells

  9. Tumor endothelium marker-8 based decoys exhibit superiority over capillary morphogenesis protein-2 based decoys as anthrax toxin inhibitors.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chenguang Cai

    Full Text Available Anthrax toxin is the major virulence factor produced by Bacillus anthracis. The toxin consists of three protein subunits: protective antigen (PA, lethal factor, and edema factor. Inhibition of PA binding to its receptors, tumor endothelium marker-8 (TEM8 and capillary morphogenesis protein-2 (CMG2 can effectively block anthrax intoxication, which is particularly valuable when the toxin has already been overproduced at the late stage of anthrax infection, thus rendering antibiotics ineffectual. Receptor-like agonists, such as the mammalian cell-expressed von Willebrand factor type A (vWA domain of CMG2 (sCMG2, have demonstrated potency against the anthrax toxin. However, the soluble vWA domain of TEM8 (sTEM8 was ruled out as an anthrax toxin inhibitor candidate due to its inferior affinity to PA. In the present study, we report that L56A, a PA-binding-affinity-elevated mutant of sTEM8, could inhibit anthrax intoxication as effectively as sCMG2 in Fisher 344 rats. Additionally, pharmacokinetics showed that L56A and sTEM8 exhibit advantages over sCMG2 with better lung-targeting and longer plasma retention time, which may contribute to their enhanced protective ability in vivo. Our results suggest that receptor decoys based on TEM8 are promising anthrax toxin inhibitors and, together with the pharmacokinetic studies in this report, may contribute to the development of novel anthrax drugs.

  10. The Transcriptome of the Zoanthid Protopalythoa variabilis (Cnidaria, Anthozoa) Predicts a Basal Repertoire of Toxin-like and Venom-Auxiliary Polypeptides.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huang, Chen; Morlighem, Jean-Étienne Rl; Zhou, Hefeng; Lima, Érica P; Gomes, Paula B; Cai, Jing; Lou, Inchio; Pérez, Carlos D; Lee, Simon Ming; Rádis-Baptista, Gandhi

    2016-10-05

    Protopalythoa is a zoanthid that, together with thousands of predominantly marine species, such as hydra, jellyfish, and sea anemones, composes the oldest eumetazoan phylum, i.e., the Cnidaria. Some of these species, such as sea wasps and sea anemones, are highly venomous organisms that can produce deadly toxins for preying, for defense or for territorial disputes. Despite the fact that hundreds of organic and polypeptide toxins have been characterized from sea anemones and jellyfish, practically nothing is known about the toxin repertoire in zoanthids. Here, based on a transcriptome analysis of the zoanthid Protopalythoa variabilis, numerous predicted polypeptides with canonical venom protein features are identified. These polypeptides comprise putative proteins from different toxin families: neurotoxic peptides, hemostatic and hemorrhagic toxins, membrane-active (pore-forming) proteins, protease inhibitors, mixed-function venom enzymes, and venom auxiliary proteins. The synthesis and functional analysis of two of these predicted toxin products, one related to the ShK/Aurelin family and the other to a recently discovered anthozoan toxin, displayed potent in vivo neurotoxicity that impaired swimming in larval zebrafish. Altogether, the complex array of venom-related transcripts that are identified in P. variabilis, some of which are first reported in Cnidaria, provides novel insight into the toxin distribution among species and might contribute to the understanding of composition and evolution of venom polypeptides in toxiferous animals. © The Author 2016. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for Molecular Biology and Evolution.

  11. Toxin-Based Therapeutic Approaches

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Itai Benhar

    2010-10-01

    Full Text Available Protein toxins confer a defense against predation/grazing or a superior pathogenic competence upon the producing organism. Such toxins have been perfected through evolution in poisonous animals/plants and pathogenic bacteria. Over the past five decades, a lot of effort has been invested in studying their mechanism of action, the way they contribute to pathogenicity and in the development of antidotes that neutralize their action. In parallel, many research groups turned to explore the pharmaceutical potential of such toxins when they are used to efficiently impair essential cellular processes and/or damage the integrity of their target cells. The following review summarizes major advances in the field of toxin based therapeutics and offers a comprehensive description of the mode of action of each applied toxin.

  12. Modification of opiate agonist binding by pertussis toxin

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Abood, M.E.; Lee, N.M.; Loh, H.H.

    1986-03-05

    Opiate agonist binding is decreased by GTP, suggesting the possible involvement of GTP binding proteins in regulation of opiate receptor binding. This possibility was addressed by asking whether pertussis toxin treatment, which results in ADP-ribosylation and modification of G proteins, would alter opiate agonist binding. The striatum was chosen for the initial brain area to be studied, since regulation of opiate action in this area had been shown to be modified by pertussis toxin. Treatment of striatal membranes with pertussis toxin results in up to a 55% decrease in /sup 3/(H)-DADLE binding as compared with membranes treated identically without toxin. This corresponds to a near complete ADP-ribosylation of both G proteins in the striatal membrane. The decrease in agonist binding appears to be due to an altered affinity of the receptor for agonist as opposed to a decrease in the number of sites. This effect of pertussis toxin on opiate agonist binding demonstrates the actual involvement of G proteins in regulation of opiate receptor binding.

  13. Modification of opiate agonist binding by pertussis toxin

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Abood, M.E.; Lee, N.M.; Loh, H.H.

    1986-01-01

    Opiate agonist binding is decreased by GTP, suggesting the possible involvement of GTP binding proteins in regulation of opiate receptor binding. This possibility was addressed by asking whether pertussis toxin treatment, which results in ADP-ribosylation and modification of G proteins, would alter opiate agonist binding. The striatum was chosen for the initial brain area to be studied, since regulation of opiate action in this area had been shown to be modified by pertussis toxin. Treatment of striatal membranes with pertussis toxin results in up to a 55% decrease in 3 (H)-DADLE binding as compared with membranes treated identically without toxin. This corresponds to a near complete ADP-ribosylation of both G proteins in the striatal membrane. The decrease in agonist binding appears to be due to an altered affinity of the receptor for agonist as opposed to a decrease in the number of sites. This effect of pertussis toxin on opiate agonist binding demonstrates the actual involvement of G proteins in regulation of opiate receptor binding

  14. Pertussis toxin substrate is a guanosine 5'-[beta-thio]diphosphate-, N-ethylmaleimide-, Mg2+- and temperature-sensitive GTP-binding protein.

    OpenAIRE

    Wong, S K; Martin, B R; Tolkovsky, A M

    1985-01-01

    We compared the effects of guanine nucleotides and Mg2+ on ADP-ribosylation of rat brain and liver membrane proteins catalysed by Bordetella pertussis toxin (IAP) and cholera toxin (CT). Labelling of proteins in the presence of [alpha-32P]NAD+, ATP and CT required GTP or guanosine 5'-[gamma-thio]triphosphate (GTP [S]). In contrast, labelling of one (liver) or two (brain) polypeptides by IAP was enhanced by guanosine 5'-[beta-thio]diphosphate (GDP[S]) or GTP, but was blocked by GTP[S] or guano...

  15. Selective Activation of a Perforin-Granzyme B Fusion Protein Toxin by PSA as Therapy for Metastatic Prostate Cancer

    Science.gov (United States)

    2016-10-01

    SUPPLEMENTARY NOTES 14. ABSTRACT Protein toxins represent a class of agents that can kill cells in a proliferation independent manner . Many such...in a proliferation independent manner . Many such proteins, derived primarily from bacterial sources, have been identified that are highly potent

  16. Pertussis toxin modifies the characteristics of both the inhibitory GTP binding proteins and the somatostatin receptor in anterior pituitary tumor cells

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mahy, N.; Woolkalis, M.; Thermos, K.; Carlson, K.; Manning, D.; Reisine, T.

    1988-01-01

    The effects of pertussis toxin treatment on the characteristics of somatostatin receptors in the anterior pituitary tumor cell line AtT-20 were examined. Pertussis toxin selectively catalyzed the ADP ribosylation of the alpha subunits of the inhibitory GTP binding proteins in AtT-20 cells. Toxin treatment abolished somatostatin inhibition of forskolin-stimulated adenylyl cyclase activity and somatostatin stimulation of GTPase activity. To examine the effects of pertussis toxin treatment on the characteristics of the somatostatin receptor, the receptor was labeled by the somatostatin analog [125I]CGP 23996. [125I]CGP 23996 binding to AtT-20 cell membranes was saturable and within a limited concentration range was to a single high affinity site. Pertussis toxin treatment reduced the apparent density of the high affinity [125I]CGP 23996 binding sites in AtT-20 cell membranes. Inhibition of [125I]CGP 23996 binding by a wide concentration range of CGP 23996 revealed the presence of two binding sites. GTP predominantly reduced the level of high affinity sites in control membranes. Pertussis toxin treatment also diminished the amount of high affinity sites. GTP did not affect [125I]CGP 23996 binding in the pertussis toxin-treated membranes. The high affinity somatostatin receptors were covalently labeled with [125I] CGP 23996 and the photoactivated crosslinking agent n-hydroxysuccinimidyl-4-azidobenzoate. No high affinity somatostatin receptors, covalently bound to [125I]CGP 23996, were detected in the pertussis toxin-treated membranes. These results are most consistent with pertussis toxin uncoupling the inhibitory G proteins from the somatostatin receptor thereby converting the receptor from a mixed population of high and low affinity sites to only low affinity receptors

  17. Crystallization of isoelectrically homogeneous cholera toxin

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Spangler, B.D.; Westbrook, E.M.

    1989-01-01

    Past difficulty in growing good crystals of cholera toxin has prevented the study of the crystal structure of this important protein. The authors have determined that failure of cholera toxin to crystallize well has been due to its heterogeneity. They have now succeeded in overcoming the problem by isolating a single isoelectric variant of this oligomeric protein (one A subunit and five B subunits). Cholera toxin purified by their procedure readily forms large single crystals. The crystal form has been described previously. They have recorded data from native crystals of cholera toxin to 3.0-angstrom resolution with our electronic area detectors. With these data, they have found the orientation of a 5-fold symmetry axis within these crystals, perpendicular to the screw dyad of the crystal. They are now determining the crystal structure of cholera toxin by a combination of multiple heavy-atom isomorphous replacement and density modification techniques, making use of rotational 5-fold averaging of the B subunits

  18. Adsorption, desorption and biodegradation in soil of CrylAb toxin protein from Bt transgenic rice

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wang Haiyan; Ye Qingfu

    2004-01-01

    The equilibrium adsorption and binding of CrylAb toxin from Bt transgenic rice, to 7 different soils and the biodegradation of the bound toxin were studied. The adsorption rate of Bt in soils improved with decreasing of the added Bt purified protein concentration. Adsorption rate (125 and 780 nm/ml) in powdery-muddy paddy soil, Fluvio-marine yellow loamy and Coastal saline soil were 24.85% and 40.81%, 9.1% and 31.67%, 12.47% and 30.75%, respectively. Desorption rate in the soils dropped with content of soil-absorbed protein decreased. Its adsorption ratio in powdery-muddy paddy soil was 12.95% and 5.88%, respectively. The relationship between adsorption amount and concentration of Bt purified protein in different soils was notably positive correlation (P 0 e -λt ); Half life of Bt protein in soils was among 15.2-97.6 d; Degradation of pruified Bt protein was rapid at the initial incubation time (30 d), but slow at 150d incubation; The degradation of purified Bt protein in Intertidal sandy soil was the slowest with half-life of 97.6d. The protein in the soil amended with 1.25 μg/g could be still detectable after incubation of 345d; the degradation of purified Bt protein in Coastal saline soil and Aquic light saline sandy soil were faster. Their half-lives were 19.6 d and 15.2 d, respecitvely. The residue time of Bt purified protein in the soils was all more than 150 d. (authors)

  19. Cellular Entry of Clostridium perfringens Iota-Toxin and Clostridium botulinum C2 Toxin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Takehara, Masaya; Takagishi, Teruhisa; Seike, Soshi; Oda, Masataka; Sakaguchi, Yoshihiko; Hisatsune, Junzo; Ochi, Sadayuki; Kobayashi, Keiko; Nagahama, Masahiro

    2017-08-11

    Clostridium perfringens iota-toxin and Clostridium botulinum C2 toxin are composed of two non-linked proteins, one being the enzymatic component and the other being the binding/translocation component. These latter components recognize specific receptors and oligomerize in plasma membrane lipid-rafts, mediating the uptake of the enzymatic component into the cytosol. Enzymatic components induce actin cytoskeleton disorganization through the ADP-ribosylation of actin and are responsible for cell rounding and death. This review focuses upon the recent advances in cellular internalization of clostridial binary toxins.

  20. Evaluation of Cholera Toxin Expression in Acidic, Alkaline and Neutral Conditions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Narges Rahimi

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available Background: Cholera is a severe disease which is caused by Vibrio cholerae and it is typically transmitted by either contaminated food or water particularly in developing countries. The most important virulence factor of this bacterium is an enterotoxin called cholera toxin which is a protein complex secreted by the Vibrio cholerae. Objectives: In this project, we determined the production of cholera toxin at different pH values. Materials and Methods: Two standard strain of Vibrio cholerae O1 biovar EL Tor N16961 and Vibrio cholerae O1 biovar Classic ATCC 14035 were used. After overnight cultivation of both the strains the total mRNA extracted and converted to total cDNA. Results: By Relative Real-Time PCR analysis the most cholera toxin production in classical and El Tor strains was at pH 8.5 and 8, respectively. Conclusions: Therefore, We may conclude that use of acidic diet will help in reduction of cholera toxin production.

  1. Two conformational states of the membrane-associated Bacillus thuringiensis Cry4Ba δ-endotoxin complex revealed by electron crystallography: Implications for toxin-pore formation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ounjai, Puey; Unger, Vinzenz M.; Sigworth, Fred J.; Angsuthanasombat, Chanan

    2007-01-01

    The insecticidal nature of Cry δ-endotoxins produced by Bacillus thuringiensis is generally believed to be caused by their ability to form lytic pores in the midgut cell membrane of susceptible insect larvae. Here we have analyzed membrane-associated structures of the 65-kDa dipteran-active Cry4Ba toxin by electron crystallography. The membrane-associated toxin complex was crystallized in the presence of DMPC via detergent dialysis. Depending upon the charge of the adsorbed surface, 2D crystals of the oligomeric toxin complex have been captured in two distinct conformations. The projection maps of those crystals have been generated at 17 A resolution. Both complexes appeared to be trimeric; as in one crystal form, its projection structure revealed a symmetrical pinwheel-like shape with virtually no depression in the middle of the complex. The other form revealed a propeller-like conformation displaying an obvious hole in the center region, presumably representing the toxin-induced pore. These crystallographic data thus demonstrate for the first time that the 65-kDa activated Cry4Ba toxin in association with lipid membranes could exist in at least two different trimeric conformations, conceivably implying the closed and open states of the pore

  2. Efficacy of a potential trivalent vaccine based on Hc fragments of botulinum toxins A, B, and E produced in a cell-free expression system.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zichel, R; Mimran, A; Keren, A; Barnea, A; Steinberger-Levy, I; Marcus, D; Turgeman, A; Reuveny, S

    2010-05-01

    Botulinum toxins produced by the anaerobic bacterium Clostridium botulinum are the most potent biological toxins in nature. Traditionally, people at risk are immunized with a formaldehyde-inactivated toxin complex. Second generation vaccines are based on the recombinant carboxy-terminal heavy-chain (Hc) fragment of the neurotoxin. However, the materialization of this approach is challenging, mainly due to the high AT content of clostridial genes. Herein, we present an alternative strategy in which the native genes encoding Hc proteins of botulinum toxins A, B, and E were used to express the recombinant Hc fragments in a cell-free expression system. We used the unique property of this open system to introduce different combinations of chaperone systems, protein disulfide isomerase (PDI), and reducing/oxidizing environments directly to the expression reaction. Optimized expression conditions led to increased production of soluble Hc protein, which was successfully scaled up using a continuous exchange (CE) cell-free system. Hc proteins were produced at a concentration of more than 1 mg/ml and purified by one-step Ni(+) affinity chromatography. Mice immunized with three injections containing 5 microg of any of the in vitro-expressed, alum-absorbed, Hc vaccines generated a serum enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) titer of 10(5) against the native toxin complex, which enabled protection against a high-dose toxin challenge (10(3) to 10(6) mouse 50% lethal dose [MsLD(50)]). Finally, immunization with a trivalent HcA, HcB, and HcE vaccine protected mice against the corresponding trivalent 10(5) MsLD(50) toxin challenge. Our results together with the latest developments in scalability of the in vitro protein expression systems offer alternative routes for the preparation of botulinum vaccine.

  3. Interplay between toxin transport and flotillin localization

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pust, Sascha; Dyve, Anne Berit; Torgersen, Maria L

    2010-01-01

    The flotillin proteins are localized in lipid domains at the plasma membrane as well as in intracellular compartments. In the present study, we examined the importance of flotillin-1 and flotillin-2 for the uptake and transport of the bacterial Shiga toxin (Stx) and the plant toxin ricin and we...... for flotillin-1 or -2. However, the Golgi-dependent sulfation of both toxins was significantly reduced in flotillin knockdown cells. Interestingly, when the transport of ricin to the ER was investigated, we obtained an increased mannosylation of ricin in flotillin-1 and flotillin-2 knockdown cells. The toxicity...... of both toxins was twofold increased in flotillin-depleted cells. Since BFA (Brefeldin A) inhibits the toxicity even in flotillin knockdown cells, the retrograde toxin transport is apparently still Golgi-dependent. Thus, flotillin proteins regulate and facilitate the retrograde transport of Stx and ricin....

  4. Cellular Entry of Clostridium perfringens Iota-Toxin and Clostridium botulinum C2 Toxin

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Masaya Takehara

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available Clostridium perfringens iota-toxin and Clostridium botulinum C2 toxin are composed of two non-linked proteins, one being the enzymatic component and the other being the binding/translocation component. These latter components recognize specific receptors and oligomerize in plasma membrane lipid-rafts, mediating the uptake of the enzymatic component into the cytosol. Enzymatic components induce actin cytoskeleton disorganization through the ADP-ribosylation of actin and are responsible for cell rounding and death. This review focuses upon the recent advances in cellular internalization of clostridial binary toxins.

  5. Diversity of peptidic and proteinaceous toxins from social Hymenoptera venoms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dos Santos-Pinto, José Roberto Aparecido; Perez-Riverol, Amilcar; Lasa, Alexis Musacchio; Palma, Mario Sergio

    2018-06-15

    Among venomous animals, Hymenoptera have been suggested as a rich source of natural toxins. Due to their broad ecological diversity, venom from Hymenoptera insects (bees, wasps and ants) have evolved differentially thus widening the types and biological functions of their components. To date, insect toxinology analysis have scarcely uncovered the complex composition of bee, wasp and ant venoms which include low molecular weight compounds, highly abundant peptides and proteins, including several allergens. In Hymenoptera, these complex mixtures of toxins represent a potent arsenal of biological weapons that are used for self-defense, to repel intruders and to capture prey. Consequently, Hymenoptera venom components have a broad range of pharmacological targets and have been extensively studied, as promising sources of new drugs and biopesticides. In addition, the identification and molecular characterization of Hymenoptera venom allergens have allowed for the rational design of component-resolved diagnosis of allergy, finally improving the outcome of venom immunotherapy (VIT). Until recently, a limited number of Hymenoptera venoms had been unveiled due to the technical limitations of the approaches used to date. Nevertheless, the application of novel techniques with high dynamic range has significantly increased the number of identified peptidic and proteinaceous toxins. Considering this, the present review summarizes the current knowledge about the most representative Hymenoptera venom peptides and proteins which are under study for a better understanding of the insect-caused envenoming process and the development of new drugs and biopesticides. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  6. Tetrodotoxin-Producing Bacteria: Detection, Distribution and Migration of the Toxin in Aquatic Systems

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Timur Yu. Magarlamov

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available This review is devoted to the marine bacterial producers of tetrodotoxin (TTX, a potent non-protein neuroparalytic toxin. In addition to the issues of the ecology and distribution of TTX-producing bacteria, this review examines issues relating to toxin migration from bacteria to TTX-bearing animals. It is shown that the mechanism of TTX extraction from toxin-producing bacteria to the environment occur through cell death, passive/active toxin excretion, or spore germination of spore-forming bacteria. Data on TTX microdistribution in toxic organs of TTX-bearing animals indicate toxin migration from the digestive system to target organs through the transport system of the organism. The role of symbiotic microflora in animal toxicity is also discussed: despite low toxin production by bacterial strains in laboratory conditions, even minimal amounts of TTX produced by intestinal microflora of an animal can contribute to its toxicity. Special attention is paid to methods of TTX detection applicable to bacteria. Due to the complexity of toxin detection in TTX-producing bacteria, it is necessary to use several methods based on different methodological approaches. Issues crucial for further progress in detecting natural sources of TTX investigation are also considered.

  7. Toxins and derivatives in molecular pharmaceutics: Drug delivery and targeted therapy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhan, Changyou; Li, Chong; Wei, Xiaoli; Lu, Wuyuan; Lu, Weiyue

    2015-08-01

    Protein and peptide toxins offer an invaluable source for the development of actively targeted drug delivery systems. They avidly bind to a variety of cognate receptors, some of which are expressed or even up-regulated in diseased tissues and biological barriers. Protein and peptide toxins or their derivatives can act as ligands to facilitate tissue- or organ-specific accumulation of therapeutics. Some toxins have evolved from a relatively small number of structural frameworks that are particularly suitable for addressing the crucial issues of potency and stability, making them an instrumental source of leads and templates for targeted therapy. The focus of this review is on protein and peptide toxins for the development of targeted drug delivery systems and molecular therapies. We summarize disease- and biological barrier-related toxin receptors, as well as targeted drug delivery strategies inspired by those receptors. The design of new therapeutics based on protein and peptide toxins is also discussed. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  8. Alga-Produced Cholera Toxin-Pfs25 Fusion Proteins as Oral Vaccines

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gregory, James A.; Topol, Aaron B.; Doerner, David Z.

    2013-01-01

    Infectious diseases disproportionately affect indigent regions and are the greatest cause of childhood mortality in developing countries. Practical, low-cost vaccines for use in these countries are paramount to reducing disease burdens and concomitant poverty. Algae are a promising low-cost system for producing vaccines that can be orally delivered, thereby avoiding expensive purification and injectable delivery. We engineered the chloroplast of the eukaryotic alga Chlamydomonas reinhardtii to produce a chimeric protein consisting of the 25-kDa Plasmodium falciparum surface protein (Pfs25) fused to the β subunit of the cholera toxin (CtxB) to investigate an alga-based whole-cell oral vaccine. Pfs25 is a promising malaria transmission-blocking vaccine candidate that has been difficult to produce in traditional recombinant systems due to its structurally complex tandem repeats of epidermal growth factor-like domains. The noncatalytic CtxB domain of the cholera holotoxin assembles into a pentameric structure and acts as a mucosal adjuvant by binding GM1 ganglioside receptors on gut epithelial cells. We demonstrate that CtxB-Pfs25 accumulates as a soluble, properly folded and functional protein within algal chloroplasts, and it is stable in freeze-dried alga cells at ambient temperatures. In mice, oral vaccination using freeze-dried algae that produce CtxB-Pfs25 elicited CtxB-specific serum IgG antibodies and both CtxB- and Pfs25-specific secretory IgA antibodies. These data suggest that algae are a promising system for production and oral delivery of vaccine antigens, but as an orally delivered adjuvant, CtxB is best suited for eliciting secretory IgA antibodies for vaccine antigens against pathogens that invade mucosal surfaces using this strategy. PMID:23603678

  9. ADP-ribosylation by cholera toxin: functional analysis of a cellular system that stimulates the enzymic activity of cholera toxin fragment A1

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gill, D.M.; Coburn, J.

    1987-01-01

    The authors have clarified relationships between cholera toxin, cholera toxin substrates, a membrane protein S that is required for toxin activity, and a soluble protein CF that is needed for the function of S. The toxin has little intrinsic ability to catalyze ADP-ribosylations unless it encounters the active form of the S protein, which is S liganded to GTP or to a GTP analogue. In the presence of CF, S x GTP forms readily, though reversibly, but a more permanent active species, S-guanosine 5'-O-(3-thiotriphosphate) (S x GTPγS), forms over a period of 10-15 min at 37 0 C. Both guanosine 5'-O-(2-thiodiphosphate) and GTP block this quasi-permanent activation. Some S x GTPγS forms in membranes that are exposed to CF alone and then to GTPγS, with a wash in between, and it is possible that CF facilitates a G nucleotide exchange. S x GTPγS dissolved by nonionic detergents persists in solution and can be used to support the ADP-ribosylation of nucleotide-free substrates. In this circumstance, added guanyl nucleotides have no further effect. This active form of S is unstable, especially when heated, but the thermal inactivation above 45 0 C is decreased by GTPγS. Active S is required equally for the ADP-ribosylation of all of cholera toxin's protein substrates, regardless of whether they bind GTP or not. They suggest that active S interacts directly with the enzymic A 1 fragments of cholera toxin and not with any toxin substrate. The activation and activity of S are independent of the state, or even the presence, of adenylate cyclase and seem to be involved with the cyclase system only via cholera toxin. S is apparently not related by function to certain other GTP binding proteins, including p21/sup ras/, and appears to be a new GTP binding protein whose physiologic role remains to be identified

  10. ADP-ribosylation of transducin by pertussis toxin

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Watkins, P.A.; Burns, D.L.; Kanaho, Y.; Liu, T.Y.; Hewlett, E.L.; Moss, J.

    1985-01-01

    Transducin, the guanyl nucleotide-binding regulatory protein of retinal rod outer segments that couples the photon receptor, rhodopsin, with the light-activated cGMP phosphodiesterase, can be resolved into two functional components, T alpha and T beta gamma. T alpha (39 kDa), which is [ 32 P]ADP-ribosylated by pertussis toxin and [ 32 P]NAD in rod outer segments and in purified transducin, was also labeled by the toxin after separation from T beta gamma (36 kDa and approximately 10 kDa); neither component of T beta gamma was a pertussis toxin substrate. Labeling of T alpha was enhanced by T beta gamma and was maximal at approximately 1:1 molar ratio of T alpha : T beta gamma. Limited proteolysis by trypsin of T alpha in the presence of guanyl-5'-yl imidodiphosphate (Gpp(NH)p) resulted in the sequential appearance of proteins of 38 and 32 kDa. The amino terminus of both 38- and 32 -kDa proteins was leucine, whereas that of T alpha could not be identified and was assumed to be blocked. The 32 -kDa peptide was not a pertussis toxin substrate. Labeling of the 38-kDa protein was poor and was not enhanced by T beta gamma. Trypsin treatment of [ 32 P]ADP-ribosyl-T alpha produced a labeled 37-38-kDa doublet followed by appearance of radioactivity at the dye front. It appears, therefore, that, although the 38-kDa protein was poor toxin substrate, it contained the ADP-ribosylation site. Without rhodopsin, labeling of T alpha (in the presence of T beta gamma) was unaffected by Gpp(NH)p, guanosine 5'-O-(thiotriphosphate) (GTP gamma S), GTP, GDP, and guanosine 5'-O-(thiodiphosphate) (GDP beta S) but was increased by ATP. When photolyzed rhodopsin and T beta gamma were present, Gpp(NH)p and GTP gamma S decreased [ 32 P]ADP-ribosylation by pertussis toxin. Thus, pertussis toxin-catalyzed [ 32 P]ADP-ribosylation of T alpha was affected by nucleotides, rhodopsin and light in addition to T beta gamma

  11. Tumor Targeting and Drug Delivery by Anthrax Toxin

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christopher Bachran

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available Anthrax toxin is a potent tripartite protein toxin from Bacillus anthracis. It is one of the two virulence factors and causes the disease anthrax. The receptor-binding component of the toxin, protective antigen, needs to be cleaved by furin-like proteases to be activated and to deliver the enzymatic moieties lethal factor and edema factor to the cytosol of cells. Alteration of the protease cleavage site allows the activation of the toxin selectively in response to the presence of tumor-associated proteases. This initial idea of re-targeting anthrax toxin to tumor cells was further elaborated in recent years and resulted in the design of many modifications of anthrax toxin, which resulted in successful tumor therapy in animal models. These modifications include the combination of different toxin variants that require activation by two different tumor-associated proteases for increased specificity of toxin activation. The anthrax toxin system has proved to be a versatile system for drug delivery of several enzymatic moieties into cells. This highly efficient delivery system has recently been further modified by introducing ubiquitin as a cytosolic cleavage site into lethal factor fusion proteins. This review article describes the latest developments in this field of tumor targeting and drug delivery.

  12. Tumor Targeting and Drug Delivery by Anthrax Toxin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bachran, Christopher; Leppla, Stephen H

    2016-07-01

    Anthrax toxin is a potent tripartite protein toxin from Bacillus anthracis. It is one of the two virulence factors and causes the disease anthrax. The receptor-binding component of the toxin, protective antigen, needs to be cleaved by furin-like proteases to be activated and to deliver the enzymatic moieties lethal factor and edema factor to the cytosol of cells. Alteration of the protease cleavage site allows the activation of the toxin selectively in response to the presence of tumor-associated proteases. This initial idea of re-targeting anthrax toxin to tumor cells was further elaborated in recent years and resulted in the design of many modifications of anthrax toxin, which resulted in successful tumor therapy in animal models. These modifications include the combination of different toxin variants that require activation by two different tumor-associated proteases for increased specificity of toxin activation. The anthrax toxin system has proved to be a versatile system for drug delivery of several enzymatic moieties into cells. This highly efficient delivery system has recently been further modified by introducing ubiquitin as a cytosolic cleavage site into lethal factor fusion proteins. This review article describes the latest developments in this field of tumor targeting and drug delivery.

  13. Discovery of novel bacterial toxins by genomics and computational biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Doxey, Andrew C; Mansfield, Michael J; Montecucco, Cesare

    2018-06-01

    Hundreds and hundreds of bacterial protein toxins are presently known. Traditionally, toxin identification begins with pathological studies of bacterial infectious disease. Following identification and cultivation of a bacterial pathogen, the protein toxin is purified from the culture medium and its pathogenic activity is studied using the methods of biochemistry and structural biology, cell biology, tissue and organ biology, and appropriate animal models, supplemented by bioimaging techniques. The ongoing and explosive development of high-throughput DNA sequencing and bioinformatic approaches have set in motion a revolution in many fields of biology, including microbiology. One consequence is that genes encoding novel bacterial toxins can be identified by bioinformatic and computational methods based on previous knowledge accumulated from studies of the biology and pathology of thousands of known bacterial protein toxins. Starting from the paradigmatic cases of diphtheria toxin, tetanus and botulinum neurotoxins, this review discusses traditional experimental approaches as well as bioinformatics and genomics-driven approaches that facilitate the discovery of novel bacterial toxins. We discuss recent work on the identification of novel botulinum-like toxins from genera such as Weissella, Chryseobacterium, and Enteroccocus, and the implications of these computationally identified toxins in the field. Finally, we discuss the promise of metagenomics in the discovery of novel toxins and their ecological niches, and present data suggesting the existence of uncharacterized, botulinum-like toxin genes in insect gut metagenomes. Copyright © 2018. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  14. The Wor1-like protein Fgp1 regulates pathogenicity, toxin synthesis and reproduction in the phytopathogenic fungus Fusarium graminearum.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wilfried Jonkers

    Full Text Available WOR1 is a gene for a conserved fungal regulatory protein controlling the dimorphic switch and pathogenicity determents in Candida albicans and its ortholog in the plant pathogen Fusarium oxysporum, called SGE1, is required for pathogenicity and expression of key plant effector proteins. F. graminearum, an important pathogen of cereals, is not known to employ switching and no effector proteins from F. graminearum have been found to date that are required for infection. In this study, the potential role of the WOR1-like gene in pathogenesis was tested in this toxigenic fungus. Deletion of the WOR1 ortholog (called FGP1 in F. graminearum results in greatly reduced pathogenicity and loss of trichothecene toxin accumulation in infected wheat plants and in vitro. The loss of toxin accumulation alone may be sufficient to explain the loss of pathogenicity to wheat. Under toxin-inducing conditions, expression of genes for trichothecene biosynthesis and many other genes are not detected or detected at lower levels in Δfgp1 strains. FGP1 is also involved in the developmental processes of conidium formation and sexual reproduction and modulates a morphological change that accompanies mycotoxin production in vitro. The Wor1-like proteins in Fusarium species have highly conserved N-terminal regions and remarkably divergent C-termini. Interchanging the N- and C- terminal portions of proteins from F. oxysporum and F. graminearum resulted in partial to complete loss of function. Wor1-like proteins are conserved but have evolved to regulate pathogenicity in a range of fungi, likely by adaptations to the C-terminal portion of the protein.

  15. Structural and functional analysis of the kid toxin protein from E. coli Plasmid R1

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hargreaves, D.; Santos-Sierra, S.; Giraldo, R.; Sabariegos-Jareño, R.; de la Cueva-Méndez, G.; Boelens, R.|info:eu-repo/dai/nl/070151407; Díaz-Orejas, R.; Rafferty, J.B.

    2002-01-01

    We have determined the structure of Kid toxin protein from E. coli plasmid R1 involved in stable plasmid inheritance by postsegregational killing of plasmid-less daughter cells. Kid forms a two-component system with its antagonist, Kis antitoxin. Our 1.4 Å crystal structure of Kid reveals a 2-fold

  16. A new treatment for focal dystonias: incobotulinumtoxinA (Xeomin®, a botulinum neurotoxin type A free from complexing proteins

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jimenez-Shahed J

    2011-12-01

    Full Text Available Joohi Jimenez-ShahedDepartment of Neurology, Baylor College of Medicine, Houston, TX, USAAbstract: Dystonia is a movement disorder of uncertain pathogenesis that is characterized by involuntary and inappropriate muscle contractions which cause sustained abnormal postures and movements of multiple or single (focal body regions. The most common focal dystonias are cervical dystonia (CD and blepharospasm (BSP. The first-line recommended treatment for CD and BSP is injection with botulinum toxin (BoNT, of which two serotypes are available: BoNT type A (BoNT/A and BoNT type B (BoNT/B. Conventional BoNT formulations include inactive complexing proteins, which may increase the risk for antigenicity, possibly leading to treatment failure. IncobotulinumtoxinA (Xeomin®; Merz Pharmaceuticals GmbH, Frankfurt, Germany is a BoNT/A agent that has been recently Food and Drug Administration-approved for the treatment of adults with CD and adults with BSP previously treated with onabotulinumtoxinA (Botox®; Allergen, Inc, Irvine, CA – a conventional BoNT/A. IncobotulinumtoxinA is the only BoNT product that is free of complexing proteins. The necessity of complexing proteins for the effectiveness of botulinum toxin treatment has been challenged by preclinical and clinical studies with incobotulinumtoxinA. These studies have also suggested that incobotulinumtoxinA is associated with a lower risk for stimulating antibody formation than onabotulinumtoxinA. In phase 3 noninferiority trials, incobotulinumtoxinA demonstrated significant improvements in CD and BSP symptoms in both primary and secondary measures, compared with baseline, and met criteria for noninferiority versus onabotulinumtoxinA. In placebo-controlled trials, incobotulinumtoxinA also significantly improved the symptoms of CD and BSP, with robust outcomes in both primary and secondary measures. The use of incobotulinumtoxinA has been well tolerated in all trials, with an adverse event profile similar

  17. NADP+ enhances cholera and pertussis toxin-catalyzed ADP-ribosylation of membrane proteins

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kawai, Y.; Whitsel, C.; Arinze, I.J.

    1986-01-01

    Cholera or pertussis toxin-catalyzed [ 32 P]ADP-ribosylation is frequently used to estimate the concentration of the stimulatory (Ns) or inhibitory (Ni) guanine nucleotide regulatory proteins which modulate the activity of adenylate cyclase. With this assay, however, the degradation of the substrate, NAD + , by endogenous enzymes such as NAD + -glycohydrolase (NADase) present in the test membranes can influence the results. In this study the authors show that both cholera and pertussis toxin-catalyzed [ 32 P]ADP-ribosylation of liver membrane proteins is markedly enhanced by NADP + . The effect is concentration dependent; with 20 μM [ 32 P]NAD + as substrate maximal enhancement is obtained at 0.5-1.0 mM NADP + . The enhancement of [ 32 P]ADP-ribosylation by NADP + was much greater than that by other known effectors such as Mg 2+ , phosphate or isoniazid. The effect of NADP + on ADP-ribosylation may occur by inhibition of the degradation of NAD + probably by acting as an alternate substrate for NADase. Among inhibitors tested (NADP + , isoniazid, imidazole, nicotinamide, L-Arg-methyl-ester and HgCl 2 ) to suppress NADase activity, NADP + was the most effective and, 10 mM, inhibited activity of the enzyme by about 90%. In membranes which contain substantial activities of NADase the inclusion of NADP + in the assay is necessary to obtain maximal ADP-ribosylation

  18. Paralytic shellfish toxin biosynthesis in cyanobacteria and dinoflagellates: A molecular overview.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Da-Zhi; Zhang, Shu-Fei; Zhang, Yong; Lin, Lin

    2016-03-01

    Paralytic shellfish toxins (PSTs) are a group of water soluble neurotoxic alkaloids produced by two different kingdoms of life, prokaryotic cyanobacteria and eukaryotic dinoflagellates. Owing to the wide distribution of these organisms, these toxic secondary metabolites account for paralytic shellfish poisonings around the world. On the other hand, their specific binding to voltage-gated sodium channels makes these toxins potentially useful in pharmacological and toxicological applications. Much effort has been devoted to the biosynthetic mechanism of PSTs, and gene clusters encoding 26 proteins involved in PST biosynthesis have been unveiled in several cyanobacterial species. Functional analysis of toxin genes indicates that PST biosynthesis in cyanobacteria is a complex process including biosynthesis, regulation, modification and export. However, less is known about the toxin biosynthesis in dinoflagellates owing to our poor understanding of the massive genome and unique chromosomal characteristics [1]. So far, few genes involved in PST biosynthesis have been identified from dinoflagellates. Moreover, the proteins involved in PST production are far from being totally explored. Thus, the origin and evolution of PST biosynthesis in these two kingdoms are still controversial. In this review, we summarize the recent progress on the characterization of genes and proteins involved in PST biosynthesis in cyanobacteria and dinoflagellates, and discuss the standing evolutionary hypotheses concerning the origin of toxin biosynthesis as well as future perspectives in PST biosynthesis. Paralytic shellfish toxins (PSTs) are a group of potent neurotoxins which specifically block voltage-gated sodium channels in excitable cells and result in paralytic shellfish poisonings (PSPs) around the world. Two different kingdoms of life, cyanobacteria and dinoflagellates are able to produce PSTs. However, in contrast with cyanobacteria, our understanding of PST biosynthesis in

  19. Prediction of Protein-Protein Interactions Related to Protein Complexes Based on Protein Interaction Networks

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Peng Liu

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available A method for predicting protein-protein interactions based on detected protein complexes is proposed to repair deficient interactions derived from high-throughput biological experiments. Protein complexes are pruned and decomposed into small parts based on the adaptive k-cores method to predict protein-protein interactions associated with the complexes. The proposed method is adaptive to protein complexes with different structure, number, and size of nodes in a protein-protein interaction network. Based on different complex sets detected by various algorithms, we can obtain different prediction sets of protein-protein interactions. The reliability of the predicted interaction sets is proved by using estimations with statistical tests and direct confirmation of the biological data. In comparison with the approaches which predict the interactions based on the cliques, the overlap of the predictions is small. Similarly, the overlaps among the predicted sets of interactions derived from various complex sets are also small. Thus, every predicted set of interactions may complement and improve the quality of the original network data. Meanwhile, the predictions from the proposed method replenish protein-protein interactions associated with protein complexes using only the network topology.

  20. Identification of a GTP-binding protein α subunit that lacks an apparent ADP-ribosylation site for pertussis toxin

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Fong, H.K.W.; Yoshimoto, K.K.; Eversole-Cire, P.; Simon, M.I.

    1988-01-01

    Recent molecular cloning of cDNA for the α subunit of bovine transducin (a guanine nucleotide-binding regulatory protein, or G protein) has revealed the presence of two retinal-specific transducins, called T/sub r/ and T/sub c/, which are expressed in rod or cone photoreceptor cells. In a further study of G-protein diversity and signal transduction in the retina, the authors have identified a G-protein α subunit, which they refer to as G/sub z/α, by isolating a human retinal cDNA clone that cross-hybridizes at reduced stringency with bovine T/sub r/ α-subunit cDNA. The deduced amino acid sequence of G/sub z/α is 41-67% identical with those of other known G-protein α subunits. However, the 355-residue G/sub z/α lacks a consensus site for ADP-ribosylation by pertussis toxin, and its amino acid sequence varies within a number of regions that are strongly conserved among all of the other G-protein α subunits. They suggest that G/sub z/α, which appears to be highly expressed in neural tissues, represents a member of a subfamily of G proteins that mediate signal transduction in pertussis toxin-insensitive systems

  1. Radioimmunoassay for yeast killer toxin from Saccharomyces cerevisiae

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Siddiqui, F.A.; Bussey, H.

    1981-01-01

    A radioimmunoassay was developed for the K1 killer toxin from strain T158C/S14a of Saccharomyces cerevisiae. Iodine 125-labelled toxin was made to a specific activity of 100 μCi/mg of protein. Antibody to purified toxin was prepared in rabbits using toxin cross-linked to itself. These antibodies, partially purified by 50 percent ammonium sulfate precipitation and Sepharose CL-6B column chromatography, produced one precipitation band with killer toxin and bound 125 I-labelled toxin in a radioimmunoassay. The antibody preparation also bound with the toxins from another K1 killer, A364A, and three chromosomal superkiller mutants derived from it. (auth)

  2. Genetically modified anthrax lethal toxin safely delivers whole HIV protein antigens into the cytosol to induce T cell immunity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lu, Yichen; Friedman, Rachel; Kushner, Nicholas; Doling, Amy; Thomas, Lawrence; Touzjian, Neal; Starnbach, Michael; Lieberman, Judy

    2000-07-01

    Bacillus anthrax lethal toxin can be engineered to deliver foreign proteins to the cytosol for antigen presentation to CD8 T cells. Vaccination with modified toxins carrying 8-9 amino acid peptide epitopes induces protective immunity in mice. To evaluate whether large protein antigens can be used with this system, recombinant constructs encoding several HIV antigens up to 500 amino acids were produced. These candidate HIV vaccines are safe in animals and induce CD8 T cells in mice. Constructs encoding gag p24 and nef stimulate gag-specific CD4 proliferation and a secondary cytotoxic T lymphocyte response in HIV-infected donor peripheral blood mononuclear cells in vitro. These results lay the foundation for future clinical vaccine studies.

  3. Dramatic expansion of the black widow toxin arsenal uncovered by multi-tissue transcriptomics and venom proteomics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Haney, Robert A; Ayoub, Nadia A; Clarke, Thomas H; Hayashi, Cheryl Y; Garb, Jessica E

    2014-06-11

    Animal venoms attract enormous interest given their potential for pharmacological discovery and understanding the evolution of natural chemistries. Next-generation transcriptomics and proteomics provide unparalleled, but underexploited, capabilities for venom characterization. We combined multi-tissue RNA-Seq with mass spectrometry and bioinformatic analyses to determine venom gland specific transcripts and venom proteins from the Western black widow spider (Latrodectus hesperus) and investigated their evolution. We estimated expression of 97,217 L. hesperus transcripts in venom glands relative to silk and cephalothorax tissues. We identified 695 venom gland specific transcripts (VSTs), many of which BLAST and GO term analyses indicate may function as toxins or their delivery agents. ~38% of VSTs had BLAST hits, including latrotoxins, inhibitor cystine knot toxins, CRISPs, hyaluronidases, chitinase, and proteases, and 59% of VSTs had predicted protein domains. Latrotoxins are venom toxins that cause massive neurotransmitter release from vertebrate or invertebrate neurons. We discovered ≥ 20 divergent latrotoxin paralogs expressed in L. hesperus venom glands, significantly increasing this biomedically important family. Mass spectrometry of L. hesperus venom identified 49 proteins from VSTs, 24 of which BLAST to toxins. Phylogenetic analyses showed venom gland specific gene family expansions and shifts in tissue expression. Quantitative expression analyses comparing multiple tissues are necessary to identify venom gland specific transcripts. We present a black widow venom specific exome that uncovers a trove of diverse toxins and associated proteins, suggesting a dynamic evolutionary history. This justifies a reevaluation of the functional activities of black widow venom in light of its emerging complexity.

  4. Prediction of Toxin Genes from Chinese Yellow Catfish Based on Transcriptomic and Proteomic Sequencing

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bing Xie

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available Fish venom remains a virtually untapped resource. There are so few fish toxin sequences for reference, which increases the difficulty to study toxins from venomous fish and to develop efficient and fast methods to dig out toxin genes or proteins. Here, we utilized Chinese yellow catfish (Pelteobagrus fulvidraco as our research object, since it is a representative species in Siluriformes with its venom glands embedded in the pectoral and dorsal fins. In this study, we set up an in-house toxin database and a novel toxin-discovering protocol to dig out precise toxin genes by combination of transcriptomic and proteomic sequencing. Finally, we obtained 15 putative toxin proteins distributed in five groups, namely Veficolin, Ink toxin, Adamalysin, Za2G and CRISP toxin. It seems that we have developed a novel bioinformatics method, through which we could identify toxin proteins with high confidence. Meanwhile, these toxins can also be useful for comparative studies in other fish and development of potential drugs.

  5. Retrograde transport of protein toxins through the Golgi apparatus

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Sandvig, Kirsten; Skotland, Tore; van Deurs, Bo

    2013-01-01

    at the cell surface, and they are endocytosed both by clathrin-dependent and clathrin-independent mechanisms. Sorting to the Golgi and retrograde transport to the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) are common to these toxins, but the exact mechanisms turn out to be toxin and cell-type dependent. In the ER...

  6. Detection of protein complex from protein-protein interaction network using Markov clustering

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ochieng, P J; Kusuma, W A; Haryanto, T

    2017-01-01

    Detection of complexes, or groups of functionally related proteins, is an important challenge while analysing biological networks. However, existing algorithms to identify protein complexes are insufficient when applied to dense networks of experimentally derived interaction data. Therefore, we introduced a graph clustering method based on Markov clustering algorithm to identify protein complex within highly interconnected protein-protein interaction networks. Protein-protein interaction network was first constructed to develop geometrical network, the network was then partitioned using Markov clustering to detect protein complexes. The interest of the proposed method was illustrated by its application to Human Proteins associated to type II diabetes mellitus. Flow simulation of MCL algorithm was initially performed and topological properties of the resultant network were analysed for detection of the protein complex. The results indicated the proposed method successfully detect an overall of 34 complexes with 11 complexes consisting of overlapping modules and 20 non-overlapping modules. The major complex consisted of 102 proteins and 521 interactions with cluster modularity and density of 0.745 and 0.101 respectively. The comparison analysis revealed MCL out perform AP, MCODE and SCPS algorithms with high clustering coefficient (0.751) network density and modularity index (0.630). This demonstrated MCL was the most reliable and efficient graph clustering algorithm for detection of protein complexes from PPI networks. (paper)

  7. Clostridium botulinum serotype D neurotoxin and toxin complex bind to bovine aortic endothelial cells via sialic acid.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yoneyama, Tohru; Miyata, Keita; Chikai, Tomoyuki; Mikami, Akifumi; Suzuki, Tomonori; Hasegawa, Kimiko; Ikeda, Toshihiko; Watanabe, Toshihiro; Ohyama, Tohru; Niwa, Koichi

    2008-12-01

    Botulinum neurotoxin (BoNT) is produced as a large toxin complex (L-TC) associated with nontoxic nonhemagglutinin (NTNHA) and three hemagglutinin subcomponents (HA-70, -33 and -17). The binding properties of BoNT to neurons and L-TC to intestinal epithelial cells are well documented, while those to other tissues are largely unknown. Here, to obtain novel insights into the pathogenesis of foodborne botulism, we examine whether botulinum toxins bind to vascular endothelial cells. BoNT and 750 kDa L-TC (a complex of BoNT, NTNHA and HAs) of Clostridium botulinum serotype D were incubated with bovine aortic endothelial cells (BAECs), and binding to the cells was assessed using sodium dodecyl sulfate polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis and Western blot. Both BoNT and L-TC bound to BAECs, with L-TC showing stronger binding. Binding of BoNT and L-TC to BAECs was significantly inhibited by N-acetyl neuraminic acid in the cell culture medium or by treatment of the cells with neuraminidase. However, galactose, lactose or N-acetyl galactosamine did not significantly inhibit toxin binding to the cells. This is the first report demonstrating that BoNT and L-TC bind to BAECs via sialic acid, and this mechanism may be important in the trafficking pathway of BoNT in foodborne botulism.

  8. Dysport: pharmacological properties and factors that influence toxin action.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pickett, Andy

    2009-10-01

    The pharmacological properties of Dysport that influence toxin action are reviewed and compared with other botulinum toxin products. In particular, the subject of diffusion is examined and discussed based upon the evidence that currently exists, both from laboratory studies and from clinical data. Diffusion of botulinum toxin products is not related to the size of the toxin complex in the product since the complex dissociates under physiological conditions, releasing the naked neurotoxin to act. The active neurotoxin in Type A products is the same and therefore diffusion is equal when equal doses are administered.

  9. Toxin-Based Therapeutic Approaches

    OpenAIRE

    Itai Benhar; Assaf Shapira

    2010-01-01

    Protein toxins confer a defense against predation/grazing or a superior pathogenic competence upon the producing organism. Such toxins have been perfected through evolution in poisonous animals/plants and pathogenic bacteria. Over the past five decades, a lot of effort has been invested in studying their mechanism of action, the way they contribute to pathogenicity and in the development of antidotes that neutralize their action. In parallel, many research groups turned to explore the pharmac...

  10. Immunotoxins: The Role of the Toxin

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David FitzGerald

    2013-08-01

    Full Text Available Immunotoxins are antibody-toxin bifunctional molecules that rely on intracellular toxin action to kill target cells. Target specificity is determined via the binding attributes of the chosen antibody. Mostly, but not exclusively, immunotoxins are purpose-built to kill cancer cells as part of novel treatment approaches. Other applications for immunotoxins include immune regulation and the treatment of viral or parasitic diseases. Here we discuss the utility of protein toxins, of both bacterial and plant origin, joined to antibodies for targeting cancer cells. Finally, while clinical goals are focused on the development of novel cancer treatments, much has been learned about toxin action and intracellular pathways. Thus toxins are considered both medicines for treating human disease and probes of cellular function.

  11. A toxin-binding alkaline phosphatase fragment synergizes Bt toxin Cry1Ac against susceptible and resistant Helicoverpa armigera.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wenbo Chen

    Full Text Available Evolution of resistance by insects threatens the continued success of pest control using insecticidal crystal (Cry proteins from the bacterium Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt in sprays and transgenic plants. In this study, laboratory selection with Cry1Ac yielded five strains of cotton bollworm, Helicoverpa armigera, with resistance ratios at the median lethal concentration (LC50 of activated Cry1Ac ranging from 22 to 1700. Reduced activity and reduced transcription of an alkaline phosphatase protein that binds Cry1Ac was associated with resistance to Cry1Ac in the four most resistant strains. A Cry1Ac-binding fragment of alkaline phosphatase from H. armigera (HaALP1f was not toxic by itself, but it increased mortality caused by Cry1Ac in a susceptible strain and in all five resistant strains. Although synergism of Bt toxins against susceptible insects by toxin-binding fragments of cadherin and aminopeptidase N has been reported previously, the results here provide the first evidence of synergism of a Bt toxin by a toxin-binding fragment of alkaline phosphatase. The results here also provide the first evidence of synergism of a Bt toxin by any toxin-binding peptide against resistant insects.

  12. Plasmodium falciparum: characterization of toxin-associated proteins and identification of a hemoglobin containing parasite cytokine stimulator

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kristensen, G; Jakobsen, P H

    1996-01-01

    ]-methionine and immunoprecipitated the labeled antigens with an antiserum against IMP which blocks malaria parasite-induced TNF production. We detected four proteins associated with IMP when the immunoprecipitates were separated by SDS-PAGE and analyzed by autoradiography. To evaluate the capacity of different P. falciparum......Previous studies have indicated the inositol monophosphate (IMP) is a component of the malaria parasite toxin that induces cytokines such as tumour necrosis factor (TNF). To further characterize the toxin we have labeled Plasmodium falciparum in vitro cultures with [14C]inositol or [35S...

  13. Botulinum toxin: bioweapon & magic drug.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dhaked, Ram Kumar; Singh, Manglesh Kumar; Singh, Padma; Gupta, Pallavi

    2010-11-01

    Botulinum neurotoxins, causative agents of botulism in humans, are produced by Clostridium botulinum, an anaerobic spore-former Gram positive bacillus. Botulinum neurotoxin poses a major bioweapon threat because of its extreme potency and lethality; its ease of production, transport, and misuse; and the need for prolonged intensive care among affected persons. A single gram of crystalline toxin, evenly dispersed and inhaled, can kill more than one million people. The basis of the phenomenal potency of botulinum toxin is enzymatic; the toxin is a zinc proteinase that cleaves neuronal vesicle associated proteins responsible for acetylcholine release into the neuromuscular junction. As a military or terrorist weapon, botulinum toxin could be disseminated via aerosol or by contamination of water or food supplies, causing widespread casualties. A fascinating aspect of botulinum toxin research in recent years has been development of the most potent toxin into a molecule of significant therapeutic utility . It is the first biological toxin which is licensed for treatment of human diseases. In the late 1980s, Canada approved use of the toxin to treat strabismus, in 2001 in the removal of facial wrinkles and in 2002, the FDA in the United States followed suit. The present review focuses on both warfare potential and medical uses of botulinum neurotoxin.

  14. Structural constraints-based evaluation of immunogenic avirulent toxins from Clostridium botulinum C2 and C3 toxins as subunit vaccines.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Prisilla, A; Prathiviraj, R; Sasikala, R; Chellapandi, P

    2016-10-01

    Clostridium botulinum (group-III) is an anaerobic bacterium producing C2 and C3 toxins in addition to botulinum neurotoxins in avian and mammalian cells. C2 and C3 toxins are members of bacterial ADP-ribosyltransferase superfamily, which modify the eukaryotic cell surface proteins by ADP-ribosylation reaction. Herein, the mutant proteins with lack of catalytic and pore forming function derived from C2 (C2I and C2II) and C3 toxins were computationally evaluated to understand their structure-function integrity. We have chosen many structural constraints including local structural environment, folding process, backbone conformation, conformational dynamic sub-space, NAD-binding specificity and antigenic determinants for screening of suitable avirulent toxins. A total of 20 avirulent mutants were identified out of 23 mutants, which were experimentally produced by site-directed mutagenesis. No changes in secondary structural elements in particular to α-helices and β-sheets and also in fold rate of all-β classes. Structural stability was maintained by reordered hydrophobic and hydrogen bonding patterns. Molecular dynamic studies suggested that coupled mutations may restrain the binding affinity to NAD(+) or protein substrate upon structural destabilization. Avirulent toxins of this study have stable energetic backbone conformation with a common blue print of folding process. Molecular docking studies revealed that avirulent mutants formed more favorable hydrogen bonding with the side-chain of amino acids near to conserved NAD-binding core, despite of restraining NAD-binding specificity. Thus, structural constraints in the avirulent toxins would determine their immunogenic nature for the prioritization of protein-based subunit vaccine/immunogens to avian and veterinary animals infected with C. botulinum. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  15. Bacterial community affects toxin production by Gymnodinium catenatum.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maria E Albinsson

    Full Text Available The paralytic shellfish toxin (PST-producing dinoflagellate Gymnodinium catenatum grows in association with a complex marine bacterial community that is both essential for growth and can alter culture growth dynamics. Using a bacterial community replacement approach, we examined the intracellular PST content, production rate, and profile of G. catenatum cultures grown with bacterial communities of differing complexity and composition. Clonal offspring were established from surface-sterilized resting cysts (produced by sexual crosses of strain GCDE06 and strain GCLV01 and grown with: 1 complex bacterial communities derived from each of the two parent cultures; 2 simplified bacterial communities composed of the G. catenatum-associated bacteria Marinobacter sp. strain DG879 or Alcanivorax sp. strain DG881; 3 a complex bacterial community associated with an untreated, unsterilized sexual cross of the parents. Toxin content (STX-equivalent per cell of clonal offspring (134-197 fmol STX cell(-1 was similar to the parent cultures (169-206 fmol STX cell(-1, however cultures grown with single bacterial types contained less toxin (134-146 fmol STX cell(-1 than offspring or parent cultures grown with more complex mixed bacterial communities (152-176 fmol STX cell(-1. Specific toxin production rate (fmol STX day(-1 was strongly correlated with culture growth rate. Net toxin production rate (fmol STX cell(-1 day(-1 did not differ among treatments, however, mean net toxin production rate of offspring was 8-fold lower than the parent cultures, suggesting that completion of the sexual lifecycle in laboratory cultures leads to reduced toxin production. The PST profiles of offspring cultures were most similar to parent GCDE06 with the exception of cultures grown with Marinobacter sp. DG879 which produced higher proportions of dcGTX2+3 and GC1+2, and lower proportions of C1+2 and C3+4. Our data demonstrate that the bacterial community can alter intracellular STX

  16. Bacterial community affects toxin production by Gymnodinium catenatum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Albinsson, Maria E; Negri, Andrew P; Blackburn, Susan I; Bolch, Christopher J S

    2014-01-01

    The paralytic shellfish toxin (PST)-producing dinoflagellate Gymnodinium catenatum grows in association with a complex marine bacterial community that is both essential for growth and can alter culture growth dynamics. Using a bacterial community replacement approach, we examined the intracellular PST content, production rate, and profile of G. catenatum cultures grown with bacterial communities of differing complexity and composition. Clonal offspring were established from surface-sterilized resting cysts (produced by sexual crosses of strain GCDE06 and strain GCLV01) and grown with: 1) complex bacterial communities derived from each of the two parent cultures; 2) simplified bacterial communities composed of the G. catenatum-associated bacteria Marinobacter sp. strain DG879 or Alcanivorax sp. strain DG881; 3) a complex bacterial community associated with an untreated, unsterilized sexual cross of the parents. Toxin content (STX-equivalent per cell) of clonal offspring (134-197 fmol STX cell(-1)) was similar to the parent cultures (169-206 fmol STX cell(-1)), however cultures grown with single bacterial types contained less toxin (134-146 fmol STX cell(-1)) than offspring or parent cultures grown with more complex mixed bacterial communities (152-176 fmol STX cell(-1)). Specific toxin production rate (fmol STX day(-1)) was strongly correlated with culture growth rate. Net toxin production rate (fmol STX cell(-1) day(-1)) did not differ among treatments, however, mean net toxin production rate of offspring was 8-fold lower than the parent cultures, suggesting that completion of the sexual lifecycle in laboratory cultures leads to reduced toxin production. The PST profiles of offspring cultures were most similar to parent GCDE06 with the exception of cultures grown with Marinobacter sp. DG879 which produced higher proportions of dcGTX2+3 and GC1+2, and lower proportions of C1+2 and C3+4. Our data demonstrate that the bacterial community can alter intracellular STX

  17. Protein complex prediction in large ontology attributed protein-protein interaction networks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Yijia; Lin, Hongfei; Yang, Zhihao; Wang, Jian; Li, Yanpeng; Xu, Bo

    2013-01-01

    Protein complexes are important for unraveling the secrets of cellular organization and function. Many computational approaches have been developed to predict protein complexes in protein-protein interaction (PPI) networks. However, most existing approaches focus mainly on the topological structure of PPI networks, and largely ignore the gene ontology (GO) annotation information. In this paper, we constructed ontology attributed PPI networks with PPI data and GO resource. After constructing ontology attributed networks, we proposed a novel approach called CSO (clustering based on network structure and ontology attribute similarity). Structural information and GO attribute information are complementary in ontology attributed networks. CSO can effectively take advantage of the correlation between frequent GO annotation sets and the dense subgraph for protein complex prediction. Our proposed CSO approach was applied to four different yeast PPI data sets and predicted many well-known protein complexes. The experimental results showed that CSO was valuable in predicting protein complexes and achieved state-of-the-art performance.

  18. ACTION OF DIPHTHERIA TOXIN IN THE GUINEA PIG

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baseman, Joel B.; Pappenheimer, A. M.; Gill, D. M.; Harper, Annabel A.

    1970-01-01

    The blood clearance and distribution in the tissues of 125I after intravenous injection of small doses (1.5–5 MLD or 0.08–0.25 µg) of 125I-labeled diphtheria toxin has been followed in guinea pigs and rabbits and compared with the fate of equivalent amounts of injected 125I-labeled toxoid and bovine serum albumin. Toxoid disappeared most rapidly from the blood stream and label accumulated and was retained in liver, spleen, and especially in kidney. Both toxin and BSA behaved differently. Label was found widely distributed among all the organs except the nervous system and its rate of disappearance from the tissues paralleled its disappearance from the circulation. There was no evidence for any particular affinity of toxin for muscle tissue or for a "target" organ. Previous reports by others that toxin causes specific and selective impairment of protein synthesis in muscle tissue were not confirmed. On the contrary, both in guinea pigs and rabbits, a reduced rate of protein synthesis was observed in all tissues that had taken up the toxin label. In tissues removed from intoxicated animals of both species there was an associated reduction in aminoacyl transferase 2 content. It is concluded that the primary action of diphtheria toxin in the living animal is to effect the inactivation of aminoacyl transferase 2. The resulting inhibition in rate of protein synthesis leads to morphologic damage in all tissues reached by the toxin and ultimately to death of the animal. PMID:5511567

  19. 3D complex: a structural classification of protein complexes.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Emmanuel D Levy

    2006-11-01

    Full Text Available Most of the proteins in a cell assemble into complexes to carry out their function. It is therefore crucial to understand the physicochemical properties as well as the evolution of interactions between proteins. The Protein Data Bank represents an important source of information for such studies, because more than half of the structures are homo- or heteromeric protein complexes. Here we propose the first hierarchical classification of whole protein complexes of known 3-D structure, based on representing their fundamental structural features as a graph. This classification provides the first overview of all the complexes in the Protein Data Bank and allows nonredundant sets to be derived at different levels of detail. This reveals that between one-half and two-thirds of known structures are multimeric, depending on the level of redundancy accepted. We also analyse the structures in terms of the topological arrangement of their subunits and find that they form a small number of arrangements compared with all theoretically possible ones. This is because most complexes contain four subunits or less, and the large majority are homomeric. In addition, there is a strong tendency for symmetry in complexes, even for heteromeric complexes. Finally, through comparison of Biological Units in the Protein Data Bank with the Protein Quaternary Structure database, we identified many possible errors in quaternary structure assignments. Our classification, available as a database and Web server at http://www.3Dcomplex.org, will be a starting point for future work aimed at understanding the structure and evolution of protein complexes.

  20. Tumor Targeting and Drug Delivery by Anthrax Toxin

    OpenAIRE

    Bachran, Christopher; Leppla, Stephen H.

    2016-01-01

    Anthrax toxin is a potent tripartite protein toxin from Bacillus anthracis. It is one of the two virulence factors and causes the disease anthrax. The receptor-binding component of the toxin, protective antigen, needs to be cleaved by furin-like proteases to be activated and to deliver the enzymatic moieties lethal factor and edema factor to the cytosol of cells. Alteration of the protease cleavage site allows the activation of the toxin selectively in response to the presence of tumor-associ...

  1. Stealth and mimicry by deadly bacterial toxins

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Yates, S.P.; Jørgensen, Rene; Andersen, Gregers Rom

    2006-01-01

    Diphtheria toxin and exotoxin A are well-characterized members of the ADP-ribosyltransferase toxin family that serve as virulence factors in the pathogenic bacteria, Corynebacterium diphtheriae and Pseudomonas aeruginosa.  New high-resolution structural data of the Michaelis complex...

  2. Genotoxicity and potential carcinogenicity of cyanobacterial toxins - a review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zegura, Bojana; Straser, Alja; Filipič, Metka

    2011-01-01

    The occurrence of cyanobacterial blooms has increased significantly in many regions of the world in the last century due to water eutrophication. These blooms are hazardous to humans, animals, and plants due to the production of cyanotoxins, which can be classified in five different groups: hepatotoxins, neurotoxins, cytotoxins, dermatotoxins, and irritant toxins (lipopolysaccharides). There is evidence that certain cyanobacterial toxins are genotoxic and carcinogenic; however, the mechanisms of their potential carcinogenicity are not well understood. The most frequently occurring and widespread cyanotoxins in brackish and freshwater blooms are the cyclic heptapeptides, i.e., microcystins (MCs), and the pentapeptides, i.e., nodularins (NODs). The main mechanism associated with potential carcinogenic activity of MCs and NOD is the inhibition of protein phosphatases, which leads to the hyperphosphorylation of cellular proteins, which is considered to be associated with their tumor-promoting activity. Apart from this, MCs and NOD induce increased formation of reactive oxygen species and, consequently, oxidative DNA damage. There is also evidence that MCs and NOD induce micronuclei, and NOD was shown to have aneugenic activity. Both cyanotoxins interfere with DNA damage repair pathways, which, along with DNA damage, is an important factor involved in the carcinogenicity of these agents. Furthermore, these toxins increase the expression of TNF-α and early-response genes, including proto-oncogenes, genes involved in the response to DNA damage, cell cycle arrest, and apoptosis. Rodent studies indicate that MCs and NOD are tumor promotors, whereas NOD is thought to have also tumor-initiating activity. Another cyanobacterial toxin, cylindrospermopsin (CYN), which has been neglected for a long time, is lately being increasingly found in the freshwater environment. The principal mechanism of its toxicity is the irreversible inhibition of protein synthesis. It is pro

  3. Anti-idiotypic antibodies that protect cells against the action of diphtheria toxin

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rolf, J.M.; Gaudin, H.M.; Tirrell, S.M.; MacDonald, A.B.; Eidels, L.

    1989-01-01

    An anti-idiotypic serum prepared against the combining site (idiotype) of specific anti-diphtheria toxoid antibodies was characterized with respect to its interaction with highly diphtheria toxin-sensitive Vero cells. Although the anti-idiotypic serum protected Vero cells against the cytotoxic action of diphtheria toxin, it did not prevent the binding of 125 I-labeled diphtheria toxin to the cells but did inhibit the internalization and degradation of 125 I-labeled toxin. This anti-idiotypic serum immunoprecipitated a cell-surface protein from radiolabeled Vero cells with an apparent Mr of approximately 15,000. These results are consistent with the hypothesis that the anti-idiotypic serum contains antibodies that carry an internal image of an internalization site on the toxin and that a cell-surface protein involved in toxin internalization possesses a complementary site recognized by both the toxin and the anti-idiotypic antibodies

  4. Vth Pan American Symposium on Animal, Plant and Microbial Toxins

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Ownby, Charlotte

    1996-01-01

    .... Presentations on arthropod toxins included work on scorpion neurotoxins, K+ channel-blocking peptides, lice and wasp proteins, stinging insect venom allergens and Australian funnel-web spider toxins...

  5. Tracking micro-optical resonances for identifying and sensing novel procaspase-3 protein marker released from cell cultures in response to toxins

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Chen, Ying-Jen; Vollmer, Frank; Xiang, Wei; Klucken, Jochen

    2016-01-01

    The response of cells to toxins is commonly investigated by detecting intracellular markers for cell death, such as caspase proteins. This requires the introduction of labels by the permeabilization or complete lysis of cells. Here we introduce a non-invasive tool for monitoring a caspase protein in the extracellular medium. The tool is based on highly sensitive optical micro-devices, referred to as whispering-gallery mode biosensors (WGMBs). WGMBs are functionalized with antibodies for the specific and label-free detection of procaspase-3 released from human embryonic kidney HEK293 and neuroglioma H4 cells after introducing staurosporine and rotenone toxins, respectively. Additional tests show that the extracellular accumulation of procaspase-3 is concomitant with a decrease in cell viability. The hitherto unknown release of procaspase-3 from cells in response to toxins and its accumulation in the medium is further investigated by Western blot, showing that the extracellular detection of procaspase-3 is interrelated with cytotoxicity of alpha-synuclein protein (aSyn) overexpressed in H4 cells. These studies provide evidence for procaspase-3 as a novel extracellular biomarker for cell death, with applications in cytotoxicity tests. Such WGMBs could be applied to further identify as-yet unknown extracellular biomarkers using established antibodies against intracellular antigens. (paper)

  6. Staphylococcus aureus α-Toxin: Nearly a Century of Intrigue

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bryan J. Berube

    2013-06-01

    Full Text Available Staphylococcus aureus secretes a number of host-injurious toxins, among the most prominent of which is the small β-barrel pore-forming toxin α-hemolysin. Initially named based on its properties as a red blood cell lytic toxin, early studies suggested a far greater complexity of α-hemolysin action as nucleated cells also exhibited distinct responses to intoxication. The hemolysin, most aptly referred to as α-toxin based on its broad range of cellular specificity, has long been recognized as an important cause of injury in the context of both skin necrosis and lethal infection. The recent identification of ADAM10 as a cellular receptor for α-toxin has provided keen insight on the biology of toxin action during disease pathogenesis, demonstrating the molecular mechanisms by which the toxin causes tissue barrier disruption at host interfaces lined by epithelial or endothelial cells. This review highlights both the historical studies that laid the groundwork for nearly a century of research on α-toxin and key findings on the structural and functional biology of the toxin, in addition to discussing emerging observations that have significantly expanded our understanding of this toxin in S. aureus disease. The identification of ADAM10 as a proteinaceous receptor for the toxin not only provides a greater appreciation of truths uncovered by many historic studies, but now affords the opportunity to more extensively probe and understand the role of α-toxin in modulation of the complex interaction of S. aureus with its human host.

  7. Exploring dynamical complexity in diffusion driven predator-prey systems: Effect of toxin producing phytoplankton and spatial heterogeneities

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Upadhyay, Ranjit Kumar; Kumari, Nitu; Rai, Vikas

    2009-01-01

    In this paper, dynamical complexities in two reaction-diffusion (RD) model systems are explored. A spatial heterogeneity in the form of linear spatial gradient in the reproductive growth rate of the phytoplankton is incorporated in both the model systems. Extra mortality of the zooplankton due to toxin production by the phytoplankton is included in the second reaction diffusion model system. Effect of toxin production and spatial heterogeneity in the model systems are studied. Toxin production does not seem to have an appreciable effect on the asymptotic dynamics of the model systems. On the other hand, spatial heterogeneity does influence the dynamics. In particular, it increases the frequency of occurrence of chaos as evident from two dimensional parameter scans. Both these model systems display short term recurrent chaos [Rai V. Chaos in natural populations: edge or wedge? Ecol Complex 2004;1: 127-38] as they reside on 'edges of chaos' (EOC) [Rai V, Upadhyay RK. Evolving to the edge of chaos: chance or necessity? Chaos, Solitons and Fractals 2006;30:1074-87]. This suggests that the ecological systems have a tendency to evolve to EOC. The study corroborates the inferences drawn from an earlier study by Rai and Upadhyay [Rai V, Upadhyay RK. Evolving to the edge of chaos: chance or necessity? Chaos, Solitons and Fractals 2006;30:1074-87]. The system's dynamics is largely unpredictable and admits bursts of short-term predictability.

  8. The Cyanobacteria Derived Toxin Beta-N-Methylamino-L-Alanine and Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elijah W. Stommel

    2010-12-01

    Full Text Available There is mounting evidence to suggest that environmental factors play a major role in the development of neurodegenerative diseases like ALS (Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis. The non-protein amino acid beta-N-methylamino-L-alanine (BMAA was first associated with the high incidence of Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis/Parkinsonism Dementia Complex (ALS/PDC in Guam, and has been implicated as a potential environmental factor in ALS, Alzheimer’s disease, and other neurodegenerative diseases. BMAA has a number of toxic effects on motor neurons including direct agonist action on NMDA and AMPA receptors, induction of oxidative stress, and depletion of glutathione. As a non-protein amino acid, there is also the strong possibility that BMAA could cause intraneuronal protein misfolding, the hallmark of neurodegeneration. While an animal model for BMAA-induced ALS is lacking, there is substantial evidence to support a link between this toxin and ALS. The ramifications of discovering an environmental trigger for ALS are enormous. In this article, we discuss the history, ecology, pharmacology and clinical ramifications of this ubiquitous, cyanobacteria-derived toxin.

  9. Why do we study animal toxins?

    Science.gov (United States)

    ZHANG, Yun

    2015-01-01

    Venom (toxins) is an important trait evolved along the evolutionary tree of animals. Our knowledges on venoms, such as their origins and loss, the biological relevance and the coevolutionary patterns with other organisms are greatly helpful in understanding many fundamental biological questions, i.e., the environmental adaptation and survival competition, the evolution shaped development and balance of venoms, and the sophisticated correlations among venom, immunity, body power, intelligence, their genetic basis, inherent association, as well as the cost-benefit and trade-offs of biological economy. Lethal animal envenomation can be found worldwide. However, from foe to friend, toxin studies have led lots of important discoveries and exciting avenues in deciphering and fighting human diseases, including the works awarded the Nobel Prize and lots of key clinic therapeutics. According to our survey, so far, only less than 0.1% of the toxins of the venomous animals in China have been explored. We emphasize on the similarities shared by venom and immune systems, as well as the studies of toxin knowledge-based physiological toxin-like proteins/peptides (TLPs). We propose the natural pairing hypothesis. Evolution links toxins with humans. Our mission is to find out the right natural pairings and interactions of our body elements with toxins, and with endogenous toxin-like molecules. Although, in nature, toxins may endanger human lives, but from a philosophical point of view, knowing them well is an effective way to better understand ourselves. So, this is why we study toxins. PMID:26228472

  10. Anti-idiotypic antibodies that protect cells against the action of diphtheria toxin

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Rolf, J.M.; Gaudin, H.M.; Tirrell, S.M.; MacDonald, A.B.; Eidels, L.

    1989-03-01

    An anti-idiotypic serum prepared against the combining site (idiotype) of specific anti-diphtheria toxoid antibodies was characterized with respect to its interaction with highly diphtheria toxin-sensitive Vero cells. Although the anti-idiotypic serum protected Vero cells against the cytotoxic action of diphtheria toxin, it did not prevent the binding of /sup 125/I-labeled diphtheria toxin to the cells but did inhibit the internalization and degradation of /sup 125/I-labeled toxin. This anti-idiotypic serum immunoprecipitated a cell-surface protein from radiolabeled Vero cells with an apparent Mr of approximately 15,000. These results are consistent with the hypothesis that the anti-idiotypic serum contains antibodies that carry an internal image of an internalization site on the toxin and that a cell-surface protein involved in toxin internalization possesses a complementary site recognized by both the toxin and the anti-idiotypic antibodies.

  11. Diversification of a single ancestral gene into a successful toxin superfamily in highly venomous Australian funnel-web spiders.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pineda, Sandy S; Sollod, Brianna L; Wilson, David; Darling, Aaron; Sunagar, Kartik; Undheim, Eivind A B; Kely, Laurence; Antunes, Agostinho; Fry, Bryan G; King, Glenn F

    2014-03-05

    Spiders have evolved pharmacologically complex venoms that serve to rapidly subdue prey and deter predators. The major toxic factors in most spider venoms are small, disulfide-rich peptides. While there is abundant evidence that snake venoms evolved by recruitment of genes encoding normal body proteins followed by extensive gene duplication accompanied by explosive structural and functional diversification, the evolutionary trajectory of spider-venom peptides is less clear. Here we present evidence of a spider-toxin superfamily encoding a high degree of sequence and functional diversity that has evolved via accelerated duplication and diversification of a single ancestral gene. The peptides within this toxin superfamily are translated as prepropeptides that are posttranslationally processed to yield the mature toxin. The N-terminal signal sequence, as well as the protease recognition site at the junction of the propeptide and mature toxin are conserved, whereas the remainder of the propeptide and mature toxin sequences are variable. All toxin transcripts within this superfamily exhibit a striking cysteine codon bias. We show that different pharmacological classes of toxins within this peptide superfamily evolved under different evolutionary selection pressures. Overall, this study reinforces the hypothesis that spiders use a combinatorial peptide library strategy to evolve a complex cocktail of peptide toxins that target neuronal receptors and ion channels in prey and predators. We show that the ω-hexatoxins that target insect voltage-gated calcium channels evolved under the influence of positive Darwinian selection in an episodic fashion, whereas the κ-hexatoxins that target insect calcium-activated potassium channels appear to be under negative selection. A majority of the diversifying sites in the ω-hexatoxins are concentrated on the molecular surface of the toxins, thereby facilitating neofunctionalisation leading to new toxin pharmacology.

  12. Human alpha-defensin-1 protects cells from intoxication with Clostridium perfringens iota toxin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fischer, Stephan; Popoff, Michel R; Barth, Holger

    2018-03-01

    Iota toxin is produced by Clostridium perfringens type E strains and associated with diarrhea in cattle and lambs. This binary protein toxin comprises the enzyme component iota a (Ia), which ADP-ribosylates G-actin, and the separate transport component iota b (Ib), which delivers Ia into the cytosol of target cells. Ib binds to cell receptors and forms biologically active toxin complexes with Ia, which cause rounding of adherent cells due to the destruction of the actin cytoskeleton. Here, we report that the human peptide α-defensin-1 protects cultured cells including human colon cells from intoxication with iota toxin. In contrast, the related ß-defensin-1 had no effect, indicating a specific mode of action. The α-defensin-1 did not inhibit ADP-ribosylation of actin by Ia in vitro. Pretreatment of Ib with α-defensin-1 prior to addition of Ia prevented intoxication. Additionally, α-defensin-1 protected cells from cytotoxic effects mediated by Ib in the absence of Ia, implicating that α-defensin-1 interacts with Ib to prevent the formation of biologically active iota toxin on cells. In conclusion, the findings contribute to a better understanding of the functions of α-defensin-1 and suggest that this human peptide might be an attractive starting point to develop novel pharmacological options to treat/prevent diseases associated with iota toxin-producing Clostridium perfringens strains.

  13. Crystallization of Doc and the Phd-Doc toxin-antitoxin complex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garcia-Pino, Abel; Dao-Thi, Minh-Hoa; Gazit, Ehud; Magnuson, Roy David; Wyns, Lode; Loris, Remy

    2008-11-01

    The phd/doc addiction system is responsible for the stable inheritance of lysogenic bacteriophage P1 in its plasmidic form in Escherichia coli and is the archetype of a family of bacterial toxin-antitoxin modules. The His66Tyr mutant of Doc (Doc(H66Y)) was crystallized in space group P2(1), with unit-cell parameters a = 53.1, b = 198.0, c = 54.1 A, beta = 93.0 degrees . These crystals diffracted to 2.5 A resolution and probably contained four dimers of Doc in the asymmetric unit. Doc(H66Y) in complex with a 22-amino-acid C-terminal peptide of Phd (Phd(52-73Se)) was crystallized in space group C2, with unit-cell parameters a = 111.1, b = 38.6, c = 63.3 A, beta = 99.3 degrees , and diffracted to 1.9 A resolution. Crystals of the complete wild-type Phd-Doc complex belonged to space group P3(1)21 or P3(2)21, had an elongated unit cell with dimensions a = b = 48.9, c = 354.9 A and diffracted to 2.4 A resolution using synchrotron radiation.

  14. Potent antitumor activity of a urokinase-activated engineered anthrax toxin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Shihui; Aaronson, Hannah; Mitola, David J.; Leppla, Stephen H.; Bugge, Thomas H.

    2003-01-01

    The acquisition of cell-surface urokinase plasminogen activator activity is a hallmark of malignancy. We generated an engineered anthrax toxin that is activated by cell-surface urokinase in vivo and displays limited toxicity to normal tissue but broad and potent tumoricidal activity. Native anthrax toxin protective antigen, when administered with a chimeric anthrax toxin lethal factor, Pseudomonas exotoxin fusion protein, was extremely toxic to mice, causing rapid and fatal organ damage. Replacing the furin activation sequence in anthrax toxin protective antigen with an artificial peptide sequence efficiently activated by urokinase greatly attenuated toxicity to mice. In addition, the mutation conferred cell-surface urokinase-dependent toxin activation in vivo, as determined by using a panel of plasminogen, plasminogen activator, plasminogen activator receptor, and plasminogen activator inhibitor-deficient mice. Surprisingly, toxin activation critically depended on both urokinase plasminogen activator receptor and plasminogen in vivo, showing that both proteins are essential cofactors for the generation of cell-surface urokinase. The engineered toxin displayed potent tumor cell cytotoxicity to a spectrum of transplanted tumors of diverse origin and could eradicate established solid tumors. This tumoricidal activity depended strictly on tumor cell-surface plasminogen activation. The data show that a simple change of protease activation specificity converts anthrax toxin from a highly lethal to a potent tumoricidal agent.

  15. Reconstitution of a physical complex between the N-formyl chemotactic peptide receptor and G protein. Inhibition by pertussis toxin-catalyzed ADP ribosylation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bommakanti, R K; Bokoch, G M; Tolley, J O; Schreiber, R E; Siemsen, D W; Klotz, K N; Jesaitis, A J

    1992-04-15

    Photoaffinity-labeled N-formyl chemotactic peptide receptors from human neutrophils solubilized in octyl glucoside exhibit two forms upon sucrose density gradient sedimentation, with apparent sedimentation coefficients of approximately 4 and 7 S. The 7 S form can be converted to the 4 S form by guanosine 5'-O-(3-thiotriphosphate) (GTP gamma S) with an EC50 of approximately 20 nM, suggesting that the 7 S form may represent a physical complex of the receptor with endogenous G protein (Jesaitis, A. J., Tolley, J. O., Bokoch, G. M., and Allen, R. A. (1989) J. Cell Biol. 109, 2783-2790). To probe the nature of the 7 S form, we reconstituted the 7 S form from the 4 S form by adding purified G protein. The 4 S form, obtained by solubilizing GTP gamma S-treated neutrophil plasma membranes, was incubated with purified (greater than 95%) Gi protein from bovine brain (containing both Gi alpha 1 and Gi alpha 2) or with neutrophil G protein (Gn), and formation of the 7 S complex was analyzed on sucrose density gradients. The EC50 of 7 S complex formation induced by the two G proteins was 70 +/- 25 and 170 +/- 40 nM for Gn and Gi, respectively. No complexation was measurable when bovine transducin (Gt) was used up to 30 times the EC50 for Gn. The EC50 for Gi was the same for receptors, obtained from formyl peptide-stimulated or unstimulated cells. The addition of 10 microM GTP gamma S to the reconstituted 7 S complex caused a complete revision of the receptor to the 4 S form, and anti-Gi peptide antisera immunosedimented the 7 S form. ADP-ribosylation of Gi prevented formation of the 7 S form even at 20 times the concentration of unribosylated Gi normally used to attain 50% conversion to the 7 S form. These observations suggest that the 7 S species is a physical complex containing N-formyl chemotactic peptide receptor and G protein.

  16. Protein complex prediction based on k-connected subgraphs in protein interaction network

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Habibi Mahnaz

    2010-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Protein complexes play an important role in cellular mechanisms. Recently, several methods have been presented to predict protein complexes in a protein interaction network. In these methods, a protein complex is predicted as a dense subgraph of protein interactions. However, interactions data are incomplete and a protein complex does not have to be a complete or dense subgraph. Results We propose a more appropriate protein complex prediction method, CFA, that is based on connectivity number on subgraphs. We evaluate CFA using several protein interaction networks on reference protein complexes in two benchmark data sets (MIPS and Aloy, containing 1142 and 61 known complexes respectively. We compare CFA to some existing protein complex prediction methods (CMC, MCL, PCP and RNSC in terms of recall and precision. We show that CFA predicts more complexes correctly at a competitive level of precision. Conclusions Many real complexes with different connectivity level in protein interaction network can be predicted based on connectivity number. Our CFA program and results are freely available from http://www.bioinf.cs.ipm.ir/softwares/cfa/CFA.rar.

  17. T-2 Toxin-induced Toxicity in Pregnant Mice and Rats

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shinya Sehata

    2008-11-01

    Full Text Available T-2 toxin is a cytotoxic secondary fungal metabolite that belongs to the trichothecene mycotoxin family. This mycotoxin is a well known inhibitor of protein synthesis through its high binding affinity to peptidyl transferase, which is an integral part of the ribosomal 60s subunit, and it also inhibits the synthesis of DNA and RNA, probably secondary to the inhibition of protein synthesis. In addition, T-2 toxin is said to induce apoptosis in many types of cells bearing high proliferating activity. T-2 toxin readily passes the placenta and is distributed to embryo/fetal tissues, which include many component cells bearing high proliferating activity. This paper reviews the reported data related to T-2 toxin-induced maternal and fetal toxicities in pregnant mice and rats. The mechanisms of T-2 toxin-induced apoptosis in maternal and fetal tissues are also discussed in this paper.

  18. Protein complex prediction based on k-connected subgraphs in protein interaction network

    OpenAIRE

    Habibi, Mahnaz; Eslahchi, Changiz; Wong, Limsoon

    2010-01-01

    Abstract Background Protein complexes play an important role in cellular mechanisms. Recently, several methods have been presented to predict protein complexes in a protein interaction network. In these methods, a protein complex is predicted as a dense subgraph of protein interactions. However, interactions data are incomplete and a protein complex does not have to be a complete or dense subgraph. Results We propose a more appropriate protein complex prediction method, CFA, that is based on ...

  19. Fidaxomicin Inhibits Clostridium difficile Toxin A-Mediated Enteritis in the Mouse Ileum

    Science.gov (United States)

    Koon, Hon Wai; Ho, Samantha; Hing, Tressia C.; Cheng, Michelle; Chen, Xinhua; Ichikawa, Yoshi; Kelly, Ciarán P.

    2014-01-01

    Clostridium difficile infection (CDI) is a common, debilitating infection with high morbidity and mortality. C. difficile causes diarrhea and intestinal inflammation by releasing two toxins, toxin A and toxin B. The macrolide antibiotic fidaxomicin was recently shown to be effective in treating CDI, and its beneficial effect was associated with fewer recurrent infections in CDI patients. Since other macrolides possess anti-inflammatory properties, we examined the possibility that fidaxomicin alters C. difficile toxin A-induced ileal inflammation in mice. The ileal loops of anesthetized mice were injected with fidaxomicin (5, 10, or 20 μM), and after 30 min, the loops were injected with purified C. difficile toxin A or phosphate-buffered saline alone. Four hours after toxin A administration, ileal tissues were processed for histological evaluation (epithelial cell damage, neutrophil infiltration, congestion, and edema) and cytokine measurements. C. difficile toxin A caused histologic damage, evidenced by increased mean histologic score and ileal interleukin-1β (IL-1β) protein and mRNA expression. Treatment with fidaxomicin (20 μM) or its primary metabolite, OP-1118 (120 μM), significantly inhibited toxin A-mediated histologic damage and reduced the mean histology score and ileal IL-1β protein and mRNA expression. Both fidaxomicin and OP-1118 reduced toxin A-induced cell rounding in human colonic CCD-18Co fibroblasts. Treatment of ileal loops with vancomycin (20 μM) and metronidazole (20 μM) did not alter toxin A-induced histologic damage and IL-1β protein expression. In addition to its well known antibacterial effects against C. difficile, fidaxomicin may possess anti-inflammatory activity directed against the intestinal effects of C. difficile toxins. PMID:24890583

  20. Evolution of Bacillus thuringiensis Cry toxins insecticidal activity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bravo, Alejandra; Gómez, Isabel; Porta, Helena; García-Gómez, Blanca Ines; Rodriguez-Almazan, Claudia; Pardo, Liliana; Soberón, Mario

    2013-01-01

    Insecticidal Cry proteins produced by Bacillus thuringiensis are use worldwide in transgenic crops for efficient pest control. Among the family of Cry toxins, the three domain Cry family is the better characterized regarding their natural evolution leading to a large number of Cry proteins with similar structure, mode of action but different insect specificity. Also, this group is the better characterized regarding the study of their mode of action and the molecular basis of insect specificity. In this review we discuss how Cry toxins have evolved insect specificity in nature and analyse several cases of improvement of Cry toxin action by genetic engineering, some of these examples are currently used in transgenic crops. We believe that the success in the improvement of insecticidal activity by genetic evolution of Cry toxins will depend on the knowledge of the rate-limiting steps of Cry toxicity in different insect pests, the mapping of the specificity binding regions in the Cry toxins, as well as the improvement of mutagenesis strategies and selection procedures. © 2012 The Authors. Microbial Biotechnology © 2012 Society for Applied Microbiology and Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

  1. Crystal structure of the HA3 subcomponent of Clostridium botulinum type C progenitor toxin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nakamura, Toshio; Kotani, Mao; Tonozuka, Takashi; Ide, Azusa; Oguma, Keiji; Nishikawa, Atsushi

    2009-01-30

    The Clostridium botulinum type C 16S progenitor toxin contains a neurotoxin and several nontoxic components, designated nontoxic nonhemagglutinin (HA), HA1 (HA-33), HA2 (HA-17), HA3a (HA-22-23), and HA3b (HA-53). The HA3b subcomponent seems to play an important role cooperatively with HA1 in the internalization of the toxin by gastrointestinal epithelial cells via binding of these subcomponents to specific oligosaccharides. In this study, we investigated the sugar-binding specificity of the HA3b subcomponent using recombinant protein fused to glutathione S-transferase and determined the three-dimensional structure of the HA3a-HA3b complex based on X-ray crystallography. The crystal structure was determined at a resolution of 2.6 A. HA3b contains three domains, domains I to III, and the structure of domain I resembles HA3a. In crystal packing, three HA3a-HA3b molecules are assembled to form a three-leaved propeller-like structure. The three HA3b domain I and three HA3a alternate, forming a trimer of dimers. In a database search, no proteins with high structural homology to any of the domains (Z score >10) were found. Especially, HA3a and HA3b domain I, mainly composed of beta-sheets, reveal a unique fold. In binding assays, HA3b bound sialic acid with high affinity, but did not bind galactose, N-acetylgalactosamine, or N-acetylglucosamine. The electron density of liganded N-acetylneuraminic acid was determined by crystal soaking. In the sugar-complex structure, the N-acetylneuraminic acid-binding site was located in the cleft formed between domains II and III of HA3b. This report provides the first determination of the three-dimensional structure of the HA3a-HA3b complex and its sialic acid binding site. Our results will provide useful information for elucidating the mechanism of assembly of the C16S toxin and for understanding the interactions with oligosaccharides on epithelial cells and internalization of the botulinum toxin complex.

  2. Inhibition of epithelial Na+ transport by atriopeptin, protein kinase c, and pertussis toxin

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mohrmann, M.; Cantiello, H.F.; Ausiello, D.A.

    1987-01-01

    The authors have recently shown the selective inhibition of an amiloride-sensitive, conductive pathway for Na + by atrial natriuretic peptide and 8-bromoguanosine 3',5'-cyclic monophosphate (8-BrcGMP) in the renal epithelial cell line, LLC-PK i . Using 22 Na + fluxes, they further investigated the modulation of Na + transport by atrial natriuretic peptide and by agents that increase cGMP production, activate protein kinase c, or modulate guanine nucleotide regulatory protein function. Sodium nitroprusside increases intracellular cGMP concentrations without affecting cAMP concentrations and completely inhibits amiloride-sensitive Na + uptake in a time- and concentration-dependent manner. Oleoyl 2-acetylglycerol and phorbol 12-myristate 13-acetate, activators of protein kinase c, inhibit Na + uptake by 93 ± 13 and 51 ± 10%, respectively. Prolonged incubation with phorbol ester results in the downregulation of protein kinase c activity and reduces the inhibitory effect of atrial natriuretic peptide, suggesting that the action of this peptide involves stimulation of protein kinase c. Pertussis toxin, which induces the ADP-ribosylation of a 41-kDa guanine nucleotide regulatory protein in LLC-PK i cells, inhibits 22 Na + influx to the same extent as amiloride. Thus, increasing cGMP, activating protein kinase c, and ADP-ribosylating a guanine nucleotide regulatory protein all inhibit Na + uptake. These events may be sequentially involved in the action of atrial natriuretic peptide

  3. Semicarbazone EGA Inhibits Uptake of Diphtheria Toxin into Human Cells and Protects Cells from Intoxication

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Leonie Schnell

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available Diphtheria toxin is a single-chain protein toxin that invades human cells by receptor-mediated endocytosis. In acidic endosomes, its translocation domain inserts into endosomal membranes and facilitates the transport of the catalytic domain (DTA from endosomal lumen into the host cell cytosol. Here, DTA ADP-ribosylates elongation factor 2 inhibits protein synthesis and leads to cell death. The compound 4-bromobenzaldehyde N-(2,6-dimethylphenylsemicarbazone (EGA has been previously shown to protect cells from various bacterial protein toxins which deliver their enzymatic subunits from acidic endosomes to the cytosol, including Bacillus anthracis lethal toxin and the binary clostridial actin ADP-ribosylating toxins C2, iota and Clostridium difficile binary toxin (CDT. Here, we demonstrate that EGA also protects human cells from diphtheria toxin by inhibiting the pH-dependent translocation of DTA across cell membranes. The results suggest that EGA might serve for treatment and/or prevention of the severe disease diphtheria.

  4. Identification and Characterization of Hyphantria cunea Aminopeptidase N as a Binding Protein of Bacillus thuringiensis Cry1Ab35 Toxin

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yakun Zhang

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available The fall webworm, Hyphantria cunea (Drury is a major invasive pest in China. Aminopeptidase N (APN isoforms in lepidopteran larvae midguts are known for their involvement in the mode of action of insecticidal crystal (Cry proteins from Bacillus thuringiensis. In the present work, we identified a putative Cry1Ab toxin-binding protein, an APN isoform designated HcAPN3, in the midgut of H. cunea by ligand blot and mass spectrometry. HcAPN3 was highly expressed throughout all larval developmental stages and was abundant in the midgut and hindgut tissues. HcAPN3 was down-regulated at 6 h, then was up-regulated significantly at 12 h and 24 h after Cry1Ab toxin treatment. We expressed HcAPN3 in insect cells and detected its interaction with Cry1Ab toxin by ligand blot assays. Furthermore, RNA interference (RNAi against HcAPN3 using oral delivery and injection of double-stranded RNA (dsRNA resulted in a 61–66% decrease in transcript level. Down-regulating of the expression of HcAPN3 was closely associated with reduced susceptibility of H. cunea to Cry1Ab. In addition, the HcAPN3E fragment peptide expressed in Escherichia coli enhanced Cry1Ab toxicity against H. cunea larvae. This work represents the first evidence to suggest that an APN in H. cunea is a putative binding protein involved in Cry1Ab susceptibility.

  5. Toxin synergism in snake venoms

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Laustsen, Andreas Hougaard

    2016-01-01

    Synergism between venom toxins exists for a range of snake species. Synergism can be derived from both intermolecular interactions and supramolecular interactions between venom components, and can be the result of toxins targeting the same protein, biochemical pathway or physiological process. Few...... simple systematic tools and methods for determining the presence of synergism exist, but include co-administration of venom components and assessment of Accumulated Toxicity Scores. A better understanding of how to investigate synergism in snake venoms may help unravel strategies for developing novel...

  6. Exploring Protein Binding of Uremic Toxins in Patients with Different Stages of Chronic Kidney Disease and during Hemodialysis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Olivier Deltombe

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available As protein binding of uremic toxins is not well understood, neither in chronic kidney disease (CKD progression, nor during a hemodialysis (HD session, we studied protein binding in two cross-sectional studies. Ninety-five CKD 2 to 5 patients and ten stable hemodialysis patients were included. Blood samples were taken either during the routine ambulatory visit (CKD patients or from blood inlet and outlet line during dialysis (HD patients. Total (CT and free concentrations were determined of p-cresylglucuronide (pCG, hippuric acid (HA, indole-3-acetic acid (IAA, indoxyl sulfate (IS and p-cresylsulfate (pCS, and their percentage protein binding (%PB was calculated. In CKD patients, %PB/CT resulted in a positive correlation (all p < 0.001 with renal function for all five uremic toxins. In HD patients, %PB was increased after 120 min of dialysis for HA and at the dialysis end for the stronger (IAA and the highly-bound (IS and pCS solutes. During one passage through the dialyzer at 120 min, %PB was increased for HA (borderline, IAA, IS and pCS. These findings explain why protein-bound solutes are difficult to remove by dialysis: a combination of the fact that (i only the free fraction can pass the filter and (ii the equilibrium, as it was pre-dialysis, cannot be restored during the dialysis session, as it is continuously disturbed.

  7. Clostridium botulinum C2 toxin--new insights into the cellular up-take of the actin-ADP-ribosylating toxin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aktories, Klaus; Barth, Holger

    2004-04-01

    Clostridium botulinum C2 toxin is a member of the family of binary actin-ADP-ribosylating toxins. It consists of the enzyme component C2I, and the separated binding/translocation component C2II. Proteolytically activated C2II forms heptamers and binds to a carbohydrate cell surface receptor. After attachment of C2I, the toxin complex is endocytosed to reach early endosomes. At low pH of endosomes, C2II-heptamers insert into the membrane, form pores and deliver C2I into the cytosol. Here, C2I ADP-ribosylates actin at Arg177 to block actin polymerization and to induce depolymerization of actin filaments. The mini-review describes main properties of C2 toxin and discusses new findings on the involvement of chaperones in the up-take process of the toxin.

  8. Recent advancement on chemical arsenal of Bt toxin and its application in pest management system in agricultural field.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chattopadhyay, Pritam; Banerjee, Goutam

    2018-04-01

    Bacillus thuringiensis ( Bt ) is a Gram-positive, spore-forming, soil bacterium, which is very popular bio-control agent in agricultural and forestry. In general, B. thuringiensis secretes an array of insecticidal proteins including toxins produced during vegetative growth phase (such as secreted insecticidal protein, Sip; vegetative insecticidal proteins, Vip), parasporal crystalline δ-endotoxins produced during vegetative stationary phase (such as cytolytic toxin, Cyt; and crystal toxin, Cry), and β-exotoxins. Till date, a wide spectrum of Cry proteins has been reported and most of them belong to three-domain-Cry toxins, Bin-like toxin, and Etx_Mtx2-like toxins. To the best of our knowledge, neither Bt insecticidal toxins are exclusive to Bt nor all the strains of Bt are capable of producing insecticidal Bt toxins. The lacuna in their latest classification has also been discussed. In this review, the updated information regarding the insecticidal Bt toxins and their different mode of actions were summarized. Before applying the Bt toxins on agricultural field, the non-specific effects of toxins should be investigated. We also have summarized the problem of insect resistance and the strategies to combat with this problem. We strongly believe that this information will help a lot to the budding researchers in the field of modern pest control biotechnology.

  9. Multiple Pseudomonas species secrete exolysin-like toxins and provoke Caspase-1-dependent macrophage death.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Basso, Pauline; Wallet, Pierre; Elsen, Sylvie; Soleilhac, Emmanuelle; Henry, Thomas; Faudry, Eric; Attrée, Ina

    2017-10-01

    Pathogenic bacteria secrete protein toxins that provoke apoptosis or necrosis of eukaryotic cells. Here, we developed a live-imaging method, based on incorporation of a DNA-intercalating dye into membrane-damaged host cells, to study the kinetics of primary bone marrow-derived macrophages (BMDMs) mortality induced by opportunistic pathogen Pseudomonas aeruginosa expressing either Type III Secretion System (T3SS) toxins or the pore-forming toxin, Exolysin (ExlA). We found that ExlA promotes the activation of Caspase-1 and maturation of interleukin-1β. BMDMs deficient for Caspase-1 and Caspase-11 were resistant to ExlA-induced death. Furthermore, by using KO BMDMs, we determined that the upstream NLRP3/ASC complex leads to the Caspase-1 activation. We also demonstrated that Pseudomonas putida and Pseudomonas protegens and the Drosophila pathogen Pseudomonas entomophila, which naturally express ExlA-like toxins, are cytotoxic toward macrophages and provoke the same type of pro-inflammatory death as does ExlA + P. aeruginosa. These results demonstrate that ExlA-like toxins of two-partner secretion systems from diverse Pseudomonas species activate the NLRP3 inflammasome and provoke inflammatory pyroptotic death of macrophages. © 2017 Society for Applied Microbiology and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  10. A novel regulator controls Clostridium difficile sporulation, motility and toxin production.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Edwards, Adrianne N; Tamayo, Rita; McBride, Shonna M

    2016-06-01

    Clostridium difficile is an anaerobic pathogen that forms spores which promote survival in the environment and transmission to new hosts. The regulatory pathways by which C. difficile initiates spore formation are poorly understood. We identified two factors with limited similarity to the Rap sporulation proteins of other spore-forming bacteria. In this study, we show that disruption of the gene CD3668 reduces sporulation and increases toxin production and motility. This mutant was more virulent and exhibited increased toxin gene expression in the hamster model of infection. Based on these phenotypes, we have renamed this locus rstA, for regulator of sporulation and toxins. Our data demonstrate that RstA is a bifunctional protein that upregulates sporulation through an unidentified pathway and represses motility and toxin production by influencing sigD transcription. Conserved RstA orthologs are present in other pathogenic and industrial Clostridium species and may represent a key regulatory protein controlling clostridial sporulation. © 2016 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  11. Development of an ELISA microarray assay for the sensitive and simultaneous detection of ten biodefense toxins.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Jenko, Kathryn; Zhang, Yanfeng; Kostenko, Yulia; Fan, Yongfeng; Garcia-Rodriguez, Consuelo; Lou, Jianlong; Marks, James D.; Varnum, Susan M.

    2014-10-21

    Plant and microbial toxins are considered bioterrorism threat agents because of their extreme toxicity and/or ease of availability. Additionally, some of these toxins are increasingly responsible for accidental food poisonings. The current study utilized an ELISA-based protein antibody microarray for the multiplexed detection of ten biothreat toxins, botulinum neurotoxins (BoNT) A, B, C, D, E, F, ricin, shiga toxins 1 and 2 (Stx), and staphylococcus enterotoxin B (SEB), in buffer and complex biological matrices. The multiplexed assay displayed a sensitivity of 1.3 pg/mL (BoNT/A, BoNT/B, SEB, Stx-1 and Stx-2), 3.3 pg/mL (BoNT/C, BoNT/E, BoNT/F) and 8.2 pg/mL (BoNT/D, ricin). All assays demonstrated high accuracy (75-120 percent recovery) and reproducibility (most coefficients of variation < 20%). Quantification curves for the ten toxins were also evaluated in clinical samples (serum, plasma, nasal fluid, saliva, stool, and urine) and environmental samples (apple juice, milk and baby food) with overall minimal matrix effects. The multiplex assays were highly specific, with little crossreactivity observed between the selected toxin antibodies. The results demonstrate a multiplex microarray that improves current immunoassay sensitivity for biological warfare agents in buffer, clinical, and environmental samples.

  12. Doc toxin is a kinase that inactivates elongation factor Tu.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cruz, Jonathan W; Rothenbacher, Francesca P; Maehigashi, Tatsuya; Lane, William S; Dunham, Christine M; Woychik, Nancy A

    2014-03-14

    The Doc toxin from bacteriophage P1 (of the phd-doc toxin-antitoxin system) has served as a model for the family of Doc toxins, many of which are harbored in the genomes of pathogens. We have shown previously that the mode of action of this toxin is distinct from the majority derived from toxin-antitoxin systems: it does not cleave RNA; in fact P1 Doc expression leads to mRNA stabilization. However, the molecular triggers that lead to translation arrest are not understood. The presence of a Fic domain, albeit slightly altered in length and at the catalytic site, provided a clue to the mechanism of P1 Doc action, as most proteins with this conserved domain inactivate GTPases through addition of an adenylyl group (also referred to as AMPylation). We demonstrated that P1 Doc added a single phosphate group to the essential translation elongation factor and GTPase, elongation factor (EF)-Tu. The phosphorylation site was at a highly conserved threonine, Thr-382, which was blocked when EF-Tu was treated with the antibiotic kirromycin. Therefore, we have established that Fic domain proteins can function as kinases. This distinct enzymatic activity exhibited by P1 Doc also solves the mystery of the degenerate Fic motif unique to the Doc family of toxins. Moreover, we have established that all characterized Fic domain proteins, even those that phosphorylate, target pivotal GTPases for inactivation through a post-translational modification at a single functionally critical acceptor site.

  13. Crystal structure of the toxin Msmeg_6760, the structural homolog of Mycobacterium tuberculosis Rv2035, a novel type II toxin involved in the hypoxic response

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bajaj, R. Alexandra; Arbing, Mark A.; Shin, Annie; Cascio, Duilio; Miallau, Linda (UCLA)

    2016-11-19

    The structure of Msmeg_6760, a protein of unknown function, has been determined. Biochemical and bioinformatics analyses determined that Msmeg_6760 interacts with a protein encoded in the same operon, Msmeg_6762, and predicted that the operon is a toxin–antitoxin (TA) system. Structural comparison of Msmeg_6760 with proteins of known function suggests that Msmeg_6760 binds a hydrophobic ligand in a buried cavity lined by large hydrophobic residues. Access to this cavity could be controlled by a gate–latch mechanism. The function of the Msmeg_6760 toxin is unknown, but structure-based predictions revealed that Msmeg_6760 and Msmeg_6762 are homologous to Rv2034 and Rv2035, a predicted novel TA system involved inMycobacterium tuberculosislatency during macrophage infection. The Msmeg_6760 toxin fold has not been previously described for bacterial toxins and its unique structural features suggest that toxin activation is likely to be mediated by a novel mechanism.

  14. Covalent structure of the insect toxin of the North African scorpion Androctonus australis Hector

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Darbon, H.; Kopeyan, C.; Rietschoten, J. van; Rochat, H.; Zlotkin, E.

    1982-01-01

    The complete covalent structure of the insect toxin purified from the venom of the North-African scorpion Androctonus australis Hector was described. Its amino acid sequence was established by phenylisothiocyanate degradation of several protein derivatives and proteolytic fragments in a liquid protein sequencer using either a ''protein'' or a ''peptide'' program. The position of the four disulfide bridges were deduced by analysis of proteolytic peptides before and after performic oxidation, and by partial labeling of the half cystine residues with [ 14 C]-iodoacetic acid and determining the specific radioactivities of the S-[ 14 C]-carboxymethylated phenylthiohydantoin cysteines. The sequences of the insect and mammal toxins from scorpions can be aligned with homology with the positions of seven half-cystine residues as registers. The mammal and insect toxins have three disulfide bridges at homologous positions. The fourth bridge is different in that Cys 12 in mammal toxin II is replaced by Cys 38 in the insect toxin. It is likely that the position of the disulfide bridges is the same for all scorpion neurotoxins active on mammals. We believe that the shift of one half-cystine residue in the insect toxin may induce a conformational change in the structure of the protein, which, in turn, may partially account for the total specificity of this toxin for insect nervous system. (author)

  15. Anthrax Toxin Receptor 2–Dependent Lethal Toxin Killing In Vivo

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scobie, Heather M; Wigelsworth, Darran J; Marlett, John M; Thomas, Diane; Rainey, G. Jonah A; Lacy, D. Borden; Manchester, Marianne; Collier, R. John; Young, John A. T

    2006-01-01

    Anthrax toxin receptors 1 and 2 (ANTXR1 and ANTXR2) have a related integrin-like inserted (I) domain which interacts with a metal cation that is coordinated by residue D683 of the protective antigen (PA) subunit of anthrax toxin. The receptor-bound metal ion and PA residue D683 are critical for ANTXR1-PA binding. Since PA can bind to ANTXR2 with reduced affinity in the absence of metal ions, we reasoned that D683 mutant forms of PA might specifically interact with ANTXR2. We show here that this is the case. The differential ability of ANTXR1 and ANTXR2 to bind D683 mutant PA proteins was mapped to nonconserved receptor residues at the binding interface with PA domain 2. Moreover, a D683K mutant form of PA that bound specifically to human and rat ANTXR2 mediated killing of rats by anthrax lethal toxin, providing strong evidence for the physiological importance of ANTXR2 in anthrax disease pathogenesis. PMID:17054395

  16. c-Jun Proto-Oncoprotein Plays a Protective Role in Lung Epithelial Cells Exposed to Staphylococcal α-Toxin

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alejandro J. Moyano

    2018-05-01

    Full Text Available c-Jun is a member of the early mammalian transcriptional regulators belonging to the AP-1 family, which participates in a wide range of cellular processes such as proliferation, apoptosis, tumorigenesis, and differentiation. Despite its established role in cell survival upon stress, its participation in the stress response induced by bacterial infections has been poorly investigated. To study the potential role of c-Jun in this context we choose the widely studied α-toxin produced by Staphylococcus aureus, a pore-forming toxin that is a critical virulence factor in the pathogenesis of these bacteria. We analyzed the effect of α-toxin treatment in the activation, expression, and protein levels of c-Jun in A549 lung epithelial cells. Furthermore, we explored the role of c-Jun in the cellular fate after exposure to α-toxin. Our results show that staphylococcal α-toxin per se is able to activate c-Jun by inducing phosphorylation of its Serine 73 residue. Silencing of the JNK (c-Jun N-terminal Kinase signaling pathway abrogated most of this activation. On the contrary, silencing of the ERK (Extracellular Signal-Regulated Kinase pathway exacerbated this response. Intriguingly, while the exposure to α-toxin induced a marked increase in the levels of c-Jun transcripts, c-Jun protein levels noticeably decreased in the same time-frame as a consequence of active proteolytic degradation through the proteasome-dependent pathway. In addition, we established that c-Jun promoted cell survival when cells were challenged with α-toxin. Similarly, c-Jun phosphorylation was also induced in cells upon intoxication with the cytolysin produced by Vibrio cholerae in a JNK-dependent manner, suggesting that c-Jun-JNK axis would be a conserved responsive cellular pathway to pore-forming toxins. This study contributes to understanding the role of the multifaceted c-Jun proto-oncoprotein in cell response to bacterial pore-forming toxins, positioning it as a relevant

  17. HKC: An Algorithm to Predict Protein Complexes in Protein-Protein Interaction Networks

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xiaomin Wang

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available With the availability of more and more genome-scale protein-protein interaction (PPI networks, research interests gradually shift to Systematic Analysis on these large data sets. A key topic is to predict protein complexes in PPI networks by identifying clusters that are densely connected within themselves but sparsely connected with the rest of the network. In this paper, we present a new topology-based algorithm, HKC, to detect protein complexes in genome-scale PPI networks. HKC mainly uses the concepts of highest k-core and cohesion to predict protein complexes by identifying overlapping clusters. The experiments on two data sets and two benchmarks show that our algorithm has relatively high F-measure and exhibits better performance compared with some other methods.

  18. Endoribonuclease type II toxin-antitoxin systems: functional or selfish?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ramisetty, Bhaskar Chandra Mohan; Santhosh, Ramachandran Sarojini

    2017-07-01

    Most bacterial genomes have multiple type II toxin-antitoxin systems (TAs) that encode two proteins which are referred to as a toxin and an antitoxin. Toxins inhibit a cellular process, while the interaction of the antitoxin with the toxin attenuates the toxin's activity. Endoribonuclease-encoding TAs cleave RNA in a sequence-dependent fashion, resulting in translational inhibition. To account for their prevalence and retention by bacterial genomes, TAs are credited with clinically significant phenomena, such as bacterial programmed cell death, persistence, biofilms and anti-addiction to plasmids. However, the programmed cell death and persistence hypotheses have been challenged because of conceptual, methodological and/or strain issues. In an alternative view, chromosomal TAs seem to be retained by virtue of addiction at two levels: via a poison-antidote combination (TA proteins) and via transcriptional reprogramming of the downstream core gene (due to integration). Any perturbation in the chromosomal TA operons could cause fitness loss due to polar effects on the downstream genes and hence be detrimental under natural conditions. The endoribonucleases encoding chromosomal TAs are most likely selfish DNA as they are retained by bacterial genomes, even though TAs do not confer a direct advantage via the TA proteins. TAs are likely used by various replicons as 'genetic arms' that allow the maintenance of themselves and associated genetic elements. TAs seem to be the 'selfish arms' that make the best use of the 'arms race' between bacterial genomes and plasmids.

  19. Enhanced sporulation and toxin production by a mutant derivative of ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    fatima

    total proteins determined with the toxin producing organism. All values are the ... synthesis specific yield was the ratio of δ-endo-toxin (mg L-1) divided by .... corresponding to 31.8 mg. 108 spore. −1 delta-endotoxins, it became apparent that ...

  20. Doc Toxin Is a Kinase That Inactivates Elongation Factor Tu*

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cruz, Jonathan W.; Rothenbacher, Francesca P.; Maehigashi, Tatsuya; Lane, William S.; Dunham, Christine M.; Woychik, Nancy A.

    2014-01-01

    The Doc toxin from bacteriophage P1 (of the phd-doc toxin-antitoxin system) has served as a model for the family of Doc toxins, many of which are harbored in the genomes of pathogens. We have shown previously that the mode of action of this toxin is distinct from the majority derived from toxin-antitoxin systems: it does not cleave RNA; in fact P1 Doc expression leads to mRNA stabilization. However, the molecular triggers that lead to translation arrest are not understood. The presence of a Fic domain, albeit slightly altered in length and at the catalytic site, provided a clue to the mechanism of P1 Doc action, as most proteins with this conserved domain inactivate GTPases through addition of an adenylyl group (also referred to as AMPylation). We demonstrated that P1 Doc added a single phosphate group to the essential translation elongation factor and GTPase, elongation factor (EF)-Tu. The phosphorylation site was at a highly conserved threonine, Thr-382, which was blocked when EF-Tu was treated with the antibiotic kirromycin. Therefore, we have established that Fic domain proteins can function as kinases. This distinct enzymatic activity exhibited by P1 Doc also solves the mystery of the degenerate Fic motif unique to the Doc family of toxins. Moreover, we have established that all characterized Fic domain proteins, even those that phosphorylate, target pivotal GTPases for inactivation through a post-translational modification at a single functionally critical acceptor site. PMID:24448800

  1. Array biosensor for detection of toxins

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ligler, Frances S.; Taitt, Chris Rowe; Shriver-Lake, Lisa C.; Sapsford, Kim E.; Shubin, Yura; Golden, Joel P.

    2003-01-01

    The array biosensor is capable of detecting multiple targets rapidly and simultaneously on the surface of a single waveguide. Sandwich and competitive fluoroimmunoassays have been developed to detect high and low molecular weight toxins, respectively, in complex samples. Recognition molecules (usually antibodies) were first immobilized in specific locations on the waveguide and the resultant patterned array was used to interrogate up to 12 different samples for the presence of multiple different analytes. Upon binding of a fluorescent analyte or fluorescent immunocomplex, the pattern of fluorescent spots was detected using a CCD camera. Automated image analysis was used to determine a mean fluorescence value for each assay spot and to subtract the local background signal. The location of the spot and its mean fluorescence value were used to determine the toxin identity and concentration. Toxins were measured in clinical fluids, environmental samples and foods, with minimal sample preparation. Results are shown for rapid analyses of staphylococcal enterotoxin B, ricin, cholera toxin, botulinum toxoids, trinitrotoluene, and the mycotoxin fumonisin. Toxins were detected at levels as low as 0.5 ng mL(-1).

  2. A Novel Tenebrio molitor Cadherin Is a Functional Receptor for Bacillus thuringiensis Cry3Aa Toxin*

    OpenAIRE

    Fabrick, Jeff; Oppert, Cris; Lorenzen, Marcé D.; Morris, Kaley; Oppert, Brenda; Jurat-Fuentes, Juan Luis

    2009-01-01

    Cry toxins produced by the bacterium Bacillus thuringiensis are effective biological insecticides. Cadherin-like proteins have been reported as functional Cry1A toxin receptors in Lepidoptera. Here we present data that demonstrate that a coleopteran cadherin is a functional Cry3Aa toxin receptor. The Cry3Aa receptor cadherin was cloned from Tenebrio molitor larval midgut mRNA, and the predicted protein, TmCad1, has domain structure and a putative toxin binding region similar to those in lepid...

  3. Brown spider dermonecrotic toxin directly induces nephrotoxicity

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Chaim, Olga Meiri; Sade, Youssef Bacila; Bertoni da Silveira, Rafael; Toma, Leny; Kalapothakis, Evanguedes; Chavez-Olortegui, Carlos; Mangili, Oldemir Carlos; Gremski, Waldemiro; Dietrich, Carl Peter von; Nader, Helena B.; Sanches Veiga, Silvio

    2006-01-01

    Brown spider (Loxosceles genus) venom can induce dermonecrotic lesions at the bite site and systemic manifestations including fever, vomiting, convulsions, disseminated intravascular coagulation, hemolytic anemia and acute renal failure. The venom is composed of a mixture of proteins with several molecules biochemically and biologically well characterized. The mechanism by which the venom induces renal damage is unknown. By using mice exposed to Loxosceles intermedia recombinant dermonecrotic toxin (LiRecDT), we showed direct induction of renal injuries. Microscopic analysis of renal biopsies from dermonecrotic toxin-treated mice showed histological alterations including glomerular edema and tubular necrosis. Hyalinization of tubules with deposition of proteinaceous material in the tubule lumen, tubule epithelial cell vacuoles, tubular edema and epithelial cell lysis was also observed. Leukocytic infiltration was neither observed in the glomerulus nor the tubules. Renal vessels showed no sign of inflammatory response. Additionally, biochemical analyses showed such toxin-induced changes in renal function as urine alkalinization, hematuria and azotemia with elevation of blood urea nitrogen levels. Immunofluorescence with dermonecrotic toxin antibodies and confocal microscopy analysis showed deposition and direct binding of this toxin to renal intrinsic structures. By immunoblotting with a hyperimmune dermonecrotic toxin antiserum on renal lysates from toxin-treated mice, we detected a positive signal at the region of 33-35 kDa, which strengthens the idea that renal failure is directly induced by dermonecrotic toxin. Immunofluorescence reaction with dermonecrotic toxin antibodies revealed deposition and binding of this toxin directly in MDCK epithelial cells in culture. Similarly, dermonecrotic toxin treatment caused morphological alterations of MDCK cells including cytoplasmic vacuoles, blebs, evoked impaired spreading and detached cells from each other and from

  4. [Botulism: structure and function of botulinum toxin and its clinical application].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oguma, Keiji; Yamamoto, Yumiko; Suzuki, Tomonori; Fatmawati, Ni Nengah Dwi; Fujita, Kumiko

    2012-08-01

    Clostridium botulinum produces seven immunological distinct poisonous neurotoxins, A to G, with molecular masses of approximately 150kDa. In acidic foods and culture fluid, the neurotoxins associate with non-toxic components, and form large complexes designated progenitor toxins. The progenitor toxins are found in three forms named LL, L, and M. These neurotoxins and progenitor toxins were purified, and whole nucleotide sequences of their structure genes were determined. In this manuscript, the structure and function of these toxins, and the application of these toxins to clinical usage have been described.

  5. Complete subunit structure of the Clostridium botulinum type D toxin complex via intermediate assembly with nontoxic components.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mutoh, Shingo; Kouguchi, Hirokazu; Sagane, Yoshimasa; Suzuki, Tomonori; Hasegawa, Kimiko; Watanabe, Toshihiro; Ohyama, Tohru

    2003-09-23

    Clostridium botulinum serotype D strains usually produce two types of stable toxin complex (TC), namely, the 300 kDa M (M-TC) and the 660 kDa L (L-TC) toxin complexes. We previously proposed assembly pathways for both TCs [Kouguchi, H., et al. (2002) J. Biol. Chem. 277, 2650-2656]: M-TC is composed by association of neurotoxin (NT) and nontoxic nonhemagglutinin (NTNHA); conjugation of M-TC with three auxiliary types of hemagglutinin subcomponents (HA-33, HA-17, and HA-70) leads to the formation of L-TC. In this study, we found three TC species, 410, 540, and 610 kDa TC species, in the culture supernatant of type D strain 4947. The 540 and 610 kDa TC species displayed banding patterns on SDS-PAGE similar to that of L-TC but with less staining intensity of the HA-33 and HA-17 bands than those of L-TC, indicating that these are intermediate species in the pathway to L-TC assembly. In contrast, the 410 kDa TC species consisted of M-TC and two molecules of HA-70. All of the TC species, except L-TC, demonstrated no hemagglutination activity. When the intermediate TC species were mixed with an isolated HA-33/17 complex, every TC species converted to 650 kDa L-TC with full hemagglutination activity and had the same molecular composition of L-TC. On the basis of titration analysis with the HA-33/17 complex, the stoichiometry of the HA-33/17 complex molecules in the L-TC, 610 kDa, and 540 kDa TC species was estimated as 4, 3, and 2, respectively. In conclusion, the complete subunit composition of mature L-TC is deduced to be a dodecamer assembled by a single NT, a single NTNHA, two HA-70, four HA-33, and four HA-17 molecules.

  6. Prediction of heterodimeric protein complexes from weighted protein-protein interaction networks using novel features and kernel functions.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Peiying Ruan

    Full Text Available Since many proteins express their functional activity by interacting with other proteins and forming protein complexes, it is very useful to identify sets of proteins that form complexes. For that purpose, many prediction methods for protein complexes from protein-protein interactions have been developed such as MCL, MCODE, RNSC, PCP, RRW, and NWE. These methods have dealt with only complexes with size of more than three because the methods often are based on some density of subgraphs. However, heterodimeric protein complexes that consist of two distinct proteins occupy a large part according to several comprehensive databases of known complexes. In this paper, we propose several feature space mappings from protein-protein interaction data, in which each interaction is weighted based on reliability. Furthermore, we make use of prior knowledge on protein domains to develop feature space mappings, domain composition kernel and its combination kernel with our proposed features. We perform ten-fold cross-validation computational experiments. These results suggest that our proposed kernel considerably outperforms the naive Bayes-based method, which is the best existing method for predicting heterodimeric protein complexes.

  7. Toxin gene determination and evolution in scorpaenoid fish.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chuang, Po-Shun; Shiao, Jen-Chieh

    2014-09-01

    In this study, we determine the toxin genes from both cDNA and genomic DNA of four scorpaenoid fish and reconstruct their evolutionary relationship. The deduced protein sequences of the two toxin subunits in Sebastapistes strongia, Scorpaenopsis oxycephala, and Sebastiscus marmoratus are about 700 amino acid, similar to the sizes of the stonefish (Synanceia horrida, and Synanceia verrucosa) and lionfish (Pterois antennata and Pterois volitans) toxins previously published. The intron positions are highly conserved among these species, which indicate the applicability of gene finding by using genomic DNA template. The phylogenetic analysis shows that the two toxin subunits were duplicated prior to the speciation of Scorpaenoidei. The precedence of the gene duplication over speciation indicates that the toxin genes may be common to the whole family of Scorpaeniform. Furthermore, one additional toxin gene has been determined in the genomic DNA of Dendrochirus zebra. The phylogenetic analysis suggests that an additional gene duplication occurred before the speciation of the lionfish (Pteroinae) and a pseudogene may be generally present in the lineage of lionfish. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  8. Identification and characterization of an insect toxin protein, Bb70p, from the entomopathogenic fungus, Beauveria bassiana, using Galleria mellonella as a model system.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Khan, Sehroon; Nadir, Sadia; Lihua, Guo; Xu, Jianchu; Holmes, Keith A; Dewen, Qiu

    2016-01-01

    An insect-toxic protein, Bb70p, was purified from Beauveria bassiana 70 using ammonium sulfate precipitation, ion exchange chromatography, and gel filtration. Bb70p has a high affinity for anion exchangers and 2D electrophoresis results revealed a single spot with a molecular weight of 35.5 kDa and an iso-electric point of ∼4.5. Bb70p remains active from 4 to 60°C, within a pH range of 4-10, but is more active in slightly acidic pH. A pure protein, Bb70p does not have any carbohydrate side chains. The protein caused high mortality by intra-haemocelic injection into Galleria mellonella with LD50 of 334.4 μg/g body weight and activates the phenol oxidase cascade. With a partial amino acid sequence comparison using the NCBI database, we showed no homology to known toxin proteins of entomopathogenic fungi. Thus, Bb70p appears to be an insect toxin protein, demonstrating novelty. Identification of this insect-toxic protein presents potential to enhance the virulence of B. bassiana through genetic manipulation. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  9. Identification and analysis of multi-protein complexes in placenta.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fuqiang Wang

    Full Text Available Placental malfunction induces pregnancy disorders which contribute to life-threatening complications for both the mother and the fetus. Identification and characterization of placental multi-protein complexes is an important step to integratedly understand the protein-protein interaction networks in placenta which determine placental function. In this study, blue native/sodium dodecyl sulfate polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis (BN/SDS-PAGE and Liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS were used to screen the multi-protein complexes in placenta. 733 unique proteins and 34 known and novel heterooligomeric multi-protein complexes including mitochondrial respiratory chain complexes, integrin complexes, proteasome complexes, histone complex, and heat shock protein complexes were identified. A novel protein complex, which involves clathrin and small conductance calcium-activated potassium (SK channel protein 2, was identified and validated by antibody based gel shift assay, co-immunoprecipitation and immunofluorescence staining. These results suggest that BN/SDS-PAGE, when integrated with LC-MS/MS, is a very powerful and versatile tool for the investigation of placental protein complexes. This work paves the way for deeper functional characterization of the placental protein complexes associated with pregnancy disorders.

  10. How Parkinsonian Toxins Dysregulate the Autophagy Machinery

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ruben K. Dagda

    2013-11-01

    Full Text Available Since their discovery, Parkinsonian toxins (6-hydroxydopamine, MPP+, paraquat, and rotenone have been widely employed as in vivo and in vitro chemical models of Parkinson’s disease (PD. Alterations in mitochondrial homeostasis, protein quality control pathways, and more recently, autophagy/mitophagy have been implicated in neurotoxin models of PD. Here, we highlight the molecular mechanisms by which different PD toxins dysregulate autophagy/mitophagy and how alterations of these pathways play beneficial or detrimental roles in dopamine neurons. The convergent and divergent effects of PD toxins on mitochondrial function and autophagy/mitophagy are also discussed in this review. Furthermore, we propose new diagnostic tools and discuss how pharmacological modulators of autophagy/mitophagy can be developed as disease-modifying treatments for PD. Finally, we discuss the critical need to identify endogenous and synthetic forms of PD toxins and develop efficient health preventive programs to mitigate the risk of developing PD.

  11. Clostridium difficile chimeric toxin receptor binding domain vaccine induced protection against different strains in active and passive challenge models.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tian, Jing-Hui; Glenn, Gregory; Flyer, David; Zhou, Bin; Liu, Ye; Sullivan, Eddie; Wu, Hua; Cummings, James F; Elllingsworth, Larry; Smith, Gale

    2017-07-24

    Clostridium difficile is the number one cause of nosocomial antibiotic-associated diarrhea in developed countries. Historically, pathogenesis was attributed two homologous glucosylating toxins, toxin-A (TcdA) and toxin-B (TcdB). Over the past decade, however, highly virulent epidemic strains of C. difficile (B1/NAP1/027) have emerged and are linked to an increase in morbidity and mortality. Increased virulence is attributed to multiple factors including: increased production of A- and B-toxins; production of binary toxin (CDT); and the emergence of more toxic TcdB variants (TcdB (027) ). TcdB (027) is more cytotoxicity to cells; causes greater tissue damage and toxicity in animals; and is antigenically distinct from historical TcdB (TcdB (003) ). Broadly protective vaccines and therapeutic antibody strategies, therefore, may target TcdA, TcdB variants and CDT. To facilitate the generation of multivalent toxin-based C. difficile vaccines and therapeutic antibodies, we have generated fusion proteins constructed from the receptor binding domains (RBD) of TcdA, TcdB (003) , TcdB (027) and CDT. Herein, we describe the development of a trivalent toxin (T-toxin) vaccine (CDTb/TcdB (003) /TcdA) and quadravalent toxin (Q-toxin) vaccine (CDTb/TcB (003) /TcdA/TcdB (027) ) fusion proteins that retain the protective toxin neutralizing epitopes. Active immunization of mice or hamsters with T-toxin or Q-toxin fusion protein vaccines elicited the generation of toxin neutralizing antibodies to each of the toxins. Hamsters immunized with the Q-toxin vaccine were broadly protected against spore challenge with historical C. difficile 630 (toxinotype 0/ribotype 003) and epidemic NAP1 (toxinotype III/ribotype 027) strains. Fully human polyclonal antitoxin IgG was produced by immunization of transgenic bovine with these fusion proteins. In passive transfer studies, mice were protected against lethal toxin challenge. Hamsters treated with human antitoxin IgG were completely protected when

  12. Retargeting the Clostridium botulinum C2 toxin to the neuronal cytosol.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pavlik, Benjamin J; Hruska, Elizabeth J; Van Cott, Kevin E; Blum, Paul H

    2016-03-30

    Many biological toxins are known to attack specific cell types, delivering their enzymatic payloads to the cytosol. This process can be manipulated by molecular engineering of chimeric toxins. Using toxins with naturally unlinked components as a starting point is advantageous because it allows for the development of payloads separately from the binding/translocation components. Here the Clostridium botulinum C2 binding/translocation domain was retargeted to neural cell populations by deleting its non-specific binding domain and replacing it with a C. botulinum neurotoxin binding domain. This fusion protein was used to deliver fluorescently labeled payloads to Neuro-2a cells. Intracellular delivery was quantified by flow cytometry and found to be dependent on artificial enrichment of cells with the polysialoganglioside receptor GT1b. Visualization by confocal microscopy showed a dissociation of payloads from the early endosome indicating translocation of the chimeric toxin. The natural Clostridium botulinum C2 toxin was then delivered to human glioblastoma A172 and synchronized HeLa cells. In the presence of the fusion protein, native cytosolic enzymatic activity of the enzyme was observed and found to be GT1b-dependent. This retargeted toxin may enable delivery of therapeutics to peripheral neurons and be of use in addressing experimental questions about neural physiology.

  13. Acute myeloid leukemia-targeted toxin activates both apoptotic and necroptotic death mechanisms.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Henrick Horita

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Acute myelogenous leukemia (AML is the second most common leukemia with approximately 13,410 new cases and 8,990 deaths annually in the United States. A novel fusion toxin treatment, diphtheria toxin GM-CSF (DT-GMCSF has been shown to selectively eliminate leukemic repopulating cells that are critical for the formation of AML. We previously showed that DT-GMCSF treatment of U937 cells, an AML cell line, causes activation of caspases and the induction of apoptosis. METHODS AND FINDINGS: In this study we further investigate the mechanisms of cell death induced by DT-GMCSF and show that, in addition to the activation of caspase-dependent apoptosis, DT-GMCSF also kills AML cells by simultaneously activating caspase-independent necroptosis. These mechanisms depend on the ability of the targeted toxin to inhibit protein synthesis, and are not affected by the receptor that is targeted or the mechanism through which protein synthesis is blocked. CONCLUSIONS: We conclude that fusion toxin proteins may be effective for treating AML cells whether or not they are defective in apoptosis.

  14. Updates on tetanus toxin: a fundamental approach

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Md. Ahaduzzaman

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available Clostridium tetani is an anaerobic bacterium that produces second most poisonous protein toxins than any other bacteria. Tetanus in animals is sporadic in nature but difficult to combat even by using antibiotics and antiserum. It is crucial to understand the fundamental mechanisms and signals that control toxin production for advance research and medicinal uses. This review was intended for better understanding the basic patho-physiology of tetanus and neurotoxins (TeNT among the audience of related field.

  15. The role of toxins in Clostridium difficile infection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chandrasekaran, Ramyavardhanee; Lacy, D Borden

    2017-11-01

    Clostridium difficile is a bacterial pathogen that is the leading cause of nosocomial antibiotic-associated diarrhea and pseudomembranous colitis worldwide. The incidence, severity, mortality and healthcare costs associated with C. difficile infection (CDI) are rising, making C. difficile a major threat to public health. Traditional treatments for CDI involve use of antibiotics such as metronidazole and vancomycin, but disease recurrence occurs in about 30% of patients, highlighting the need for new therapies. The pathogenesis of C. difficile is primarily mediated by the actions of two large clostridial glucosylating toxins, toxin A (TcdA) and toxin B (TcdB). Some strains produce a third toxin, the binary toxin C. difficile transferase, which can also contribute to C. difficile virulence and disease. These toxins act on the colonic epithelium and immune cells and induce a complex cascade of cellular events that result in fluid secretion, inflammation and tissue damage, which are the hallmark features of the disease. In this review, we summarize our current understanding of the structure and mechanism of action of the C. difficile toxins and their role in disease. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of FEMS 2017.

  16. Characterization of the Deep-Sea Streptomyces sp. SCSIO 02999 Derived VapC/VapB Toxin-Antitoxin System in Escherichia coli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guo, Yunxue; Yao, Jianyun; Sun, Chenglong; Wen, Zhongling; Wang, Xiaoxue

    2016-07-01

    Toxin-antitoxin (TA) systems are small genetic elements that are ubiquitous in prokaryotes. Most studies on TA systems have focused on commensal and pathogenic bacteria; yet very few studies have focused on TAs in marine bacteria, especially those isolated from a deep sea environment. Here, we characterized a type II VapC/VapB TA system from the deep-sea derived Streptomyces sp. SCSIO 02999. The VapC (virulence-associated protein) protein belongs to the PIN (PilT N-terminal) superfamily. Overproduction of VapC strongly inhibited cell growth and resulted in a bleb-containing morphology in E. coli. The toxicity of VapC was neutralized through direct protein-protein interaction by a small protein antitoxin VapB encoded by a neighboring gene. Antitoxin VapB alone or the VapB/VapC complex negatively regulated the vapBC promoter activity. We further revealed that three conserved Asp residues in the PIN domain were essential for the toxic effect of VapC. Additionally, the VapC/VapB TA system stabilized plasmid in E. coli. Furthermore, VapC cross-activated transcription of several TA operons via a partially Lon-dependent mechanism in E. coli, and the activated toxins accumulated more preferentially than their antitoxin partners. Collectively, we identified and characterized a new deep sea TA system in the deep sea Streptomyces sp. and demonstrated that the VapC toxin in this system can cross-activate TA operons in E. coli.

  17. A novel membrane-bound toxin for cell division, CptA (YgfX), inhibits polymerization of cytoskeleton proteins, FtsZ and MreB, in Escherichia coli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Masuda, Hisako; Tan, Qian; Awano, Naoki; Yamaguchi, Yoshihiro; Inouye, Masayori

    2012-03-01

    Nearly all free-living bacteria carry toxin-antitoxin (TA) systems on their genomes, through which cell growth and death are regulated. Toxins target a variety of essential cellular functions, including DNA replication, translation, and cell division. Here, we identified a novel toxin, YgfX, on the Escherichia coli genome. The toxin, consisting of 135 residues, is composed of the N-terminal membrane domain, which encompasses two transmembrane segments, and the C-terminal cytoplasmic domain. Upon YgfX expression, the cells were initially elongated and then the middle portion of the cells became inflated to form a lemon shape. YgfX was found to interact with MreB and FtsZ, two essential cytoskeletal proteins in E. coli. The cytoplasmic domain [YgfX(C)] was found to be responsible for the YgfX toxicity, as purified YgfX(C) was found to block the polymerization of FtsZ and MreB in vitro. YgfY, located immediately upstream of YgfX, was shown to be the cognate antitoxin; notably, YgfX is the first membrane-associating toxin in bacterial TA systems. We propose to rename the toxin and the antitoxin as CptA and CptB (for Cytoskeleton Polymerization inhibiting Toxin), respectively. © 2012 Federation of European Microbiological Societies. Published by Blackwell Publishing Ltd. All rights reserved.

  18. An overview of the cosmetic treatment of facial muscles with a new botulinum toxin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wiest, Luitgard G

    2009-01-01

    Botulinum toxin (BTX) is used nowadays in a much more differentiated way with a much more individualized approach to the cosmetic treatment of patients. To the well known areas of the upper face new indications in the mid and lower face have been added. Microinjection techniques are increasingly used besides the classic intramuscular injection technique. BTX injections of the mid and lower face require small and smallest dosages. The perioral muscles act in concert to achieve the extraordinarily complex movements that control facial expressions, eating, and speech. As the mouth has horizontal as well as vertical movements, paralysis of these perioral muscles has a greater effect on facial function and appearance than does paralysis of muscles of the upper face, which move primarily in vertical direction. It is essential that BTX injections should achieve the desired cosmetic result with the minimum dose without any functional discomfort. In this paper the three-year clinical experience with average dosages for an optimal outcome in the treatment of facial muscles with a newly developed botulinum toxin type A (Xeomin) free from complexing proteins is presented.

  19. Native chemical ligation at Asx-Cys, Glx-Cys: chemical synthesis and high-resolution X-ray structure of ShK toxin by racemic protein crystallography.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dang, Bobo; Kubota, Tomoya; Mandal, Kalyaneswar; Bezanilla, Francisco; Kent, Stephen B H

    2013-08-14

    We have re-examined the utility of native chemical ligation at -Gln/Glu-Cys- [Glx-Cys] and -Asn/Asp-Cys- [Asx-Cys] sites. Using the improved thioaryl catalyst 4-mercaptophenylacetic acid (MPAA), native chemical ligation could be performed at -Gln-Cys- and Asn-Cys- sites without side reactions. After optimization, ligation at a -Glu-Cys- site could also be used as a ligation site, with minimal levels of byproduct formation. However, -Asp-Cys- is not appropriate for use as a site for native chemical ligation because of formation of significant amounts of β-linked byproduct. The feasibility of native chemical ligation at -Gln-Cys- enabled a convergent total chemical synthesis of the enantiomeric forms of the ShK toxin protein molecule. The D-ShK protein molecule was ~50,000-fold less active in blocking the Kv1.3 channel than the L-ShK protein molecule. Racemic protein crystallography was used to obtain high-resolution X-ray diffraction data for ShK toxin. The structure was solved by direct methods and showed significant differences from the previously reported NMR structures in some regions of the ShK protein molecule.

  20. Binding kinetics of Clostridium difficile toxins A and B to intestinal brush border membranes from infant and adult hamsters

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rolfe, R.D.

    1991-01-01

    This study was undertaken to determine if the relative resistance of neonates and infants to Clostridium difficile-associated intestinal disease can be related to age-dependent differences in intestinal receptors for C. difficile toxins A and B. Brush border membranes (BBMs) from the small intestines of adult and infant hamsters were examined for their ability to bind radiolabeled toxins A and B. [125I]toxin A bound to both infant and adult hamster BBMs at physiological temperature, whereas [125I]toxin B did not bind to the BBMs under any of the conditions examined. The number of [125I]toxin A molecules bound at saturation was approximately 4 x 10(10) per micrograms of membrane protein for adult BBMs and 1 x 10(11) per micrograms of membrane protein for infant BBMs. Scatchard plot analysis suggested the presence of a single class of toxin A binding sites on both infant and adult hamster BBMs. Maximal binding capacity and Kd values were 0.63 pmol/mg of protein and 66.7 nM, respectively, for the infant BBMs, and 0.24 pmol/mg of protein and 27 nM, respectively, for the adult BBMs. Sodium dodecyl sulfate-polyacrylamide gel electrophoretic analyses of extracted BBM proteins revealed differences in the proteins of infant and adult BBMs. However, there were not any detectable differences in the protein bands which bound [125I]toxin A between infant and adult hamsters. The results from these investigations indicate that differences in the binding kinetics of toxins A and/or B to infant and adult hamster BBMs do not account for the observed differences in their susceptibility to C. difficile-associated intestinal disease

  1. Binding kinetics of Clostridium difficile toxins A and B to intestinal brush border membranes from infant and adult hamsters

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Rolfe, R.D. (Texas Tech Univ. Health Sciences Center, Lubbock (USA))

    1991-04-01

    This study was undertaken to determine if the relative resistance of neonates and infants to Clostridium difficile-associated intestinal disease can be related to age-dependent differences in intestinal receptors for C. difficile toxins A and B. Brush border membranes (BBMs) from the small intestines of adult and infant hamsters were examined for their ability to bind radiolabeled toxins A and B. (125I)toxin A bound to both infant and adult hamster BBMs at physiological temperature, whereas (125I)toxin B did not bind to the BBMs under any of the conditions examined. The number of (125I)toxin A molecules bound at saturation was approximately 4 x 10(10) per micrograms of membrane protein for adult BBMs and 1 x 10(11) per micrograms of membrane protein for infant BBMs. Scatchard plot analysis suggested the presence of a single class of toxin A binding sites on both infant and adult hamster BBMs. Maximal binding capacity and Kd values were 0.63 pmol/mg of protein and 66.7 nM, respectively, for the infant BBMs, and 0.24 pmol/mg of protein and 27 nM, respectively, for the adult BBMs. Sodium dodecyl sulfate-polyacrylamide gel electrophoretic analyses of extracted BBM proteins revealed differences in the proteins of infant and adult BBMs. However, there were not any detectable differences in the protein bands which bound (125I)toxin A between infant and adult hamsters. The results from these investigations indicate that differences in the binding kinetics of toxins A and/or B to infant and adult hamster BBMs do not account for the observed differences in their susceptibility to C. difficile-associated intestinal disease.

  2. Structure, Biology, and Therapeutic Application of Toxin-Antitoxin Systems in Pathogenic Bacteria.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Ki-Young; Lee, Bong-Jin

    2016-10-22

    Bacterial toxin-antitoxin (TA) systems have received increasing attention for their diverse identities, structures, and functional implications in cell cycle arrest and survival against environmental stresses such as nutrient deficiency, antibiotic treatments, and immune system attacks. In this review, we describe the biological functions and the auto-regulatory mechanisms of six different types of TA systems, among which the type II TA system has been most extensively studied. The functions of type II toxins include mRNA/tRNA cleavage, gyrase/ribosome poison, and protein phosphorylation, which can be neutralized by their cognate antitoxins. We mainly explore the similar but divergent structures of type II TA proteins from 12 important pathogenic bacteria, including various aspects of protein-protein interactions. Accumulating knowledge about the structure-function correlation of TA systems from pathogenic bacteria has facilitated a novel strategy to develop antibiotic drugs that target specific pathogens. These molecules could increase the intrinsic activity of the toxin by artificially interfering with the intermolecular network of the TA systems.

  3. Magnetic Bead Based Immunoassay for Autonomous Detection of Toxins

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kwon, Y; Hara, C A; Knize, M G; Hwang, M H; Venkatesteswaran, K S; Wheeler, E K; Bell, P M; Renzi, R F; Fruetel, J A; Bailey, C G

    2008-05-01

    As a step towards toward the development of a rapid, reliable analyzer for bioagents in the environment, we are developing an automated system for the simultaneous detection of a group of select agents and toxins. To detect toxins, we modified and automated an antibody-based approach previously developed for manual medical diagnostics that uses fluorescent eTag{trademark} reporter molecules and is suitable for highly multiplexed assays. Detection is based on two antibodies binding simultaneously to a single antigen, one of which is labeled with biotin while the other is conjugated to a fluorescent eTag{trademark} through a cleavable linkage. Aqueous samples are incubated with the mixture of antibodies along with streptavidin-coated magnetic beads coupled to a photo-activatable porphyrin complex. In the presence of antigen, a molecular complex is formed where the cleavable linkage is held in proximity to the photoactivable group. Upon excitation at 680 nm, free radicals are generated, which diffuse and cleave the linkage, releasing the eTags{trademark}. Released eTags{trademark} are analyzed using capillary gel electrophoresis with laser-induced fluorescence detection. Limits of detection for ovalbumin and botulinum toxoid individually were 4 ng/mL (or 80 pg) and 16 ng/mL (or 320 pg), respectively, using the manual assay. In addition, we demonstrated the use of pairs of antibodies from different sources in a single assay to decrease the rate of false positives. Automation of the assay was demonstrated on a flow-through format with higher LODs of 125 ng/mL (or 2.5 ng) each of a mixture of ovalbumin and botulinum toxoid. This versatile assay can be easily modified with the appropriate antibodies to detect a wide range of toxins and other proteins.

  4. Molecular Dynamics Simulation of Cholera Toxin A-1 Polypeptide

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Badshah Syed Lal

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available A molecular dynamics (MD simulation study of the enzymatic portion of cholera toxin; cholera toxin A-1 polypeptide (CTA1 was performed at 283, 310 and 323 K. From total energy analysis it was observed that this toxin is stable thermodynamically and these outcomes were likewise confirmed by root mean square deviations (RMSD investigations. The Cα root mean square fluctuation (RMSF examinations revealed that there are a number of residues inside CTA1, which can be used as target for designing and synthesizing inhibitory drugs, in order to inactivate cholera toxin inside the human body. The fluctuations in the radius of gyration and hydrogen bonding in CTA1 proved that protein unfolding and refolding were normal routine phenomena in its structure at all temperatures. Solvent accessible surface area study identified the hydrophilic nature of the CTA1, and due to this property it can be a potential biological weapon. The structural identification (STRIDE algorithm for proteins was successfully used to determine the partially disordered secondary structure of CTA1. On account of this partially disordered secondary structure, it can easily deceive the proteolytic enzymes of the endoplasmic reticulum of host cells.

  5. An ABC transporter mutation is correlated with insect resistance to Bacillus thuringiensis Cry1Ac toxin.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Linda J Gahan

    2010-12-01

    Full Text Available Transgenic crops producing insecticidal toxins from Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt are commercially successful in reducing pest damage, yet knowledge of resistance mechanisms that threaten their sustainability is incomplete. Insect resistance to the pore-forming Cry1Ac toxin is correlated with the loss of high-affinity, irreversible binding to the mid-gut membrane, but the genetic factors responsible for this change have been elusive. Mutations in a 12-cadherin-domain protein confer some Cry1Ac resistance but do not block this toxin binding in in vitro assays. We sought to identify mutations in other genes that might be responsible for the loss of binding. We employed a map-based cloning approach using a series of backcrosses with 1,060 progeny to identify a resistance gene in the cotton pest Heliothis virescens that segregated independently from the cadherin mutation. We found an inactivating mutation of the ABC transporter ABCC2 that is genetically linked to Cry1Ac resistance and is correlated with loss of Cry1Ac binding to membrane vesicles. ABC proteins are integral membrane proteins with many functions, including export of toxic molecules from the cell, but have not been implicated in the mode of action of Bt toxins before. The reduction in toxin binding due to the inactivating mutation suggests that ABCC2 is involved in membrane integration of the toxin pore. Our findings suggest that ABC proteins may play a key role in the mode of action of Bt toxins and that ABC protein mutations can confer high levels of resistance that could threaten the continued utilization of Bt-expressing crops. However, such mutations may impose a physiological cost on resistant insects, by reducing export of other toxins such as plant secondary compounds from the cell. This weakness could be exploited to manage this mechanism of Bt resistance in the field.

  6. An ABC transporter mutation is correlated with insect resistance to Bacillus thuringiensis Cry1Ac toxin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gahan, Linda J; Pauchet, Yannick; Vogel, Heiko; Heckel, David G

    2010-12-16

    Transgenic crops producing insecticidal toxins from Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt) are commercially successful in reducing pest damage, yet knowledge of resistance mechanisms that threaten their sustainability is incomplete. Insect resistance to the pore-forming Cry1Ac toxin is correlated with the loss of high-affinity, irreversible binding to the mid-gut membrane, but the genetic factors responsible for this change have been elusive. Mutations in a 12-cadherin-domain protein confer some Cry1Ac resistance but do not block this toxin binding in in vitro assays. We sought to identify mutations in other genes that might be responsible for the loss of binding. We employed a map-based cloning approach using a series of backcrosses with 1,060 progeny to identify a resistance gene in the cotton pest Heliothis virescens that segregated independently from the cadherin mutation. We found an inactivating mutation of the ABC transporter ABCC2 that is genetically linked to Cry1Ac resistance and is correlated with loss of Cry1Ac binding to membrane vesicles. ABC proteins are integral membrane proteins with many functions, including export of toxic molecules from the cell, but have not been implicated in the mode of action of Bt toxins before. The reduction in toxin binding due to the inactivating mutation suggests that ABCC2 is involved in membrane integration of the toxin pore. Our findings suggest that ABC proteins may play a key role in the mode of action of Bt toxins and that ABC protein mutations can confer high levels of resistance that could threaten the continued utilization of Bt-expressing crops. However, such mutations may impose a physiological cost on resistant insects, by reducing export of other toxins such as plant secondary compounds from the cell. This weakness could be exploited to manage this mechanism of Bt resistance in the field.

  7. The mining of toxin-like polypeptides from EST database by single residue distribution analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kozlov, Sergey; Grishin, Eugene

    2011-01-31

    Novel high throughput sequencing technologies require permanent development of bioinformatics data processing methods. Among them, rapid and reliable identification of encoded proteins plays a pivotal role. To search for particular protein families, the amino acid sequence motifs suitable for selective screening of nucleotide sequence databases may be used. In this work, we suggest a novel method for simplified representation of protein amino acid sequences named Single Residue Distribution Analysis, which is applicable both for homology search and database screening. Using the procedure developed, a search for amino acid sequence motifs in sea anemone polypeptides was performed, and 14 different motifs with broad and low specificity were discriminated. The adequacy of motifs for mining toxin-like sequences was confirmed by their ability to identify 100% toxin-like anemone polypeptides in the reference polypeptide database. The employment of novel motifs for the search of polypeptide toxins in Anemonia viridis EST dataset allowed us to identify 89 putative toxin precursors. The translated and modified ESTs were scanned using a special algorithm. In addition to direct comparison with the motifs developed, the putative signal peptides were predicted and homology with known structures was examined. The suggested method may be used to retrieve structures of interest from the EST databases using simple amino acid sequence motifs as templates. The efficiency of the procedure for directed search of polypeptides is higher than that of most currently used methods. Analysis of 39939 ESTs of sea anemone Anemonia viridis resulted in identification of five protein precursors of earlier described toxins, discovery of 43 novel polypeptide toxins, and prediction of 39 putative polypeptide toxin sequences. In addition, two precursors of novel peptides presumably displaying neuronal function were disclosed.

  8. Histopathological Effects of the Yen-Tc Toxin Complex from Yersinia entomophaga MH96 (Enterobacteriaceae) on the Costelytra zealandica (Coleoptera: Scarabaeidae) Larval Midgut

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hares, Michelle C.; Jones, Sandra A.; Harper, Lincoln A.; Vernon, James R.; Harland, Duane P.; Jackson, Trevor A.; Hurst, Mark R. H.

    2012-01-01

    Yersinia entomophaga MH96, which was originally isolated from the New Zealand grass grub, Costelytra zealandica, produces an orally active proteinaceous toxin complex (Yen-Tc), and this toxin is responsible for mortality in a range of insect species, mainly within the Coleoptera and Lepidoptera. The genes encoding Yen-Tc are members of the toxin complex (Tc) family, with orthologs identified in several other bacterial species. As the mechanism of Yen-Tc activity remains unknown, a histopathological examination of C. zealandica larvae was undertaken in conjunction with cultured cells to identify the effects of Yen-Tc and to distinguish the contributions that its individual subunit components make upon intoxication. A progressive series of events that led to the deterioration of the midgut epithelium was observed. Additionally, experiments using a cell culture assay system were carried out to determine the cellular effects of intoxication on cells after topical application and the transient expression of Yen-Tc and its individual components. While observations were broadly consistent with those previously reported for other Tc family members, some differences were noted. In particular, the distinct stepwise disintegration of the midgut shared features associated with both apoptosis and necrotic programmed cell death pathways. Second, we observed, for the first time, a contribution of toxicity from two chitinases associated with the Yen-Tc complex. Our findings were suggestive of the activities encoded within the subunit components of Yen-Tc targeting different sites along putative programmed cell death pathways. Given the observed broad host range for Yen-Tc, these targeted loci are likely to be widely shared among insects. PMID:22544254

  9. Dinophysis Toxins: Causative Organisms, Distribution and Fate in Shellfish

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reguera, Beatriz; Riobó, Pilar; Rodríguez, Francisco; Díaz, Patricio A.; Pizarro, Gemita; Paz, Beatriz; Franco, José M.; Blanco, Juan

    2014-01-01

    Several Dinophysis species produce diarrhoetic toxins (okadaic acid and dinophysistoxins) and pectenotoxins, and cause gastointestinal illness, Diarrhetic Shellfish Poisoning (DSP), even at low cell densities (Chile, and Europe. Toxicity and toxin profiles are very variable, more between strains than species. The distribution of DSP events mirrors that of shellfish production areas that have implemented toxin regulations, otherwise misinterpreted as bacterial or viral contamination. Field observations and laboratory experiments have shown that most of the toxins produced by Dinophysis are released into the medium, raising questions about the ecological role of extracelular toxins and their potential uptake by shellfish. Shellfish contamination results from a complex balance between food selection, adsorption, species-specific enzymatic transformations, and allometric processes. Highest risk areas are those combining Dinophysis strains with high cell content of okadaates, aquaculture with predominance of mytilids (good accumulators of toxins), and consumers who frequently include mussels in their diet. Regions including pectenotoxins in their regulated phycotoxins will suffer from much longer harvesting bans and from disloyal competition with production areas where these toxins have been deregulated. PMID:24447996

  10. Cellular Uptake of the Clostridium perfringens Binary Iota-Toxin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blöcker, Dagmar; Behlke, Joachim; Aktories, Klaus; Barth, Holger

    2001-01-01

    The binary iota-toxin is produced by Clostridium perfringens type E strains and consists of two separate proteins, the binding component iota b (98 kDa) and an actin-ADP-ribosylating enzyme component iota a (47 kDa). Iota b binds to the cell surface receptor and mediates the translocation of iota a into the cytosol. Here we studied the cellular uptake of iota-toxin into Vero cells. Bafilomycin A1, but not brefeldin A or nocodazole, inhibited the cytotoxic effects of iota-toxin, indicating that toxin is translocated from an endosomal compartment into the cytoplasm. Acidification (pH ≤ 5.0) of the extracellular medium enabled iota a to directly enter the cytosol in the presence of iota b. Activation by chymotrypsin induced oligomerization of iota b in solution. An average mass of 530 ± 28 kDa for oligomers was determined by analytical ultracentrifugation, indicating heptamer formation. The entry of iota-toxin into polarized CaCo-2 cells was studied by measuring the decrease in transepithelial resistance after toxin treatment. Iota-toxin led to a significant decrease in resistance when it was applied to the basolateral surface of the cells but not following application to the apical surface, indicating a polarized localization of the iota-toxin receptor. PMID:11292715

  11. Nanomechanical detection of cholera toxin using microcantilevers functionalized with ganglioside nanodiscs

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Tark, Soo-Hyun; Dravid, Vinayak P [Department of Materials Science and Engineering, Northwestern University, Evanston, IL 60208 (United States); Das, Aditi; Sligar, Stephen, E-mail: s-sligar@illinois.edu, E-mail: v-dravid@northwestern.edu [Department of Biochemistry and Chemistry, Beckman Institute for Advanced Science and Technology, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Urbana, IL 61801 (United States)

    2010-10-29

    The label-free detection of cholera toxin is demonstrated using microcantilevers functionalized with ganglioside nanodiscs. The cholera toxin molecules bind specifically to the active membrane protein encased in nanodiscs, nanoscale lipid bilayers surrounded by an amphipathic protein belt, immobilized on the cantilever surface. The specific molecular binding results in cantilever deflection via the formation of a surface stress-induced bending moment. The nanomechanical cantilever response is quantitatively monitored by optical interference. The consistent and reproducible nanomechanical detection of cholera toxin in nanomolar range concentrations is demonstrated. The results validated with such a model system suggest that the combination of a microcantilever platform with receptor nanodiscs is a promising approach for monitoring invasive pathogens and other types of biomolecular detection relevant to drug discovery.

  12. Nanomechanical detection of cholera toxin using microcantilevers functionalized with ganglioside nanodiscs

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Tark, Soo-Hyun; Dravid, Vinayak P; Das, Aditi; Sligar, Stephen

    2010-01-01

    The label-free detection of cholera toxin is demonstrated using microcantilevers functionalized with ganglioside nanodiscs. The cholera toxin molecules bind specifically to the active membrane protein encased in nanodiscs, nanoscale lipid bilayers surrounded by an amphipathic protein belt, immobilized on the cantilever surface. The specific molecular binding results in cantilever deflection via the formation of a surface stress-induced bending moment. The nanomechanical cantilever response is quantitatively monitored by optical interference. The consistent and reproducible nanomechanical detection of cholera toxin in nanomolar range concentrations is demonstrated. The results validated with such a model system suggest that the combination of a microcantilever platform with receptor nanodiscs is a promising approach for monitoring invasive pathogens and other types of biomolecular detection relevant to drug discovery.

  13. In vitro reconstitution of the Clostridium botulinum type D progenitor toxin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kouguchi, Hirokazu; Watanabe, Toshihiro; Sagane, Yoshimasa; Sunagawa, Hiroyuki; Ohyama, Tohru

    2002-01-25

    Clostridium botulinum type D strain 4947 produces two different sizes of progenitor toxins (M and L) as intact forms without proteolytic processing. The M toxin is composed of neurotoxin (NT) and nontoxic-nonhemagglutinin (NTNHA), whereas the L toxin is composed of the M toxin and hemagglutinin (HA) subcomponents (HA-70, HA-17, and HA-33). The HA-70 subcomponent and the HA-33/17 complex were isolated from the L toxin to near homogeneity by chromatography in the presence of denaturing agents. We were able to demonstrate, for the first time, in vitro reconstitution of the L toxin formed by mixing purified M toxin, HA-70, and HA-33/17. The properties of reconstituted and native L toxins are indistinguishable with respect to their gel filtration profiles, native-PAGE profiles, hemagglutination activity, binding activity to erythrocytes, and oral toxicity to mice. M toxin, which contained nicked NTNHA prepared by treatment with trypsin, could no longer be reconstituted to the L toxin with HA subcomponents, whereas the L toxin treated with proteases was not degraded into M toxin and HA subcomponents. We conclude that the M toxin forms first by assembly of NT with NTNHA and is subsequently converted to the L toxin by assembly with HA-70 and HA-33/17.

  14. The Biochemical Toxin Arsenal from Ant Venoms

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Axel Touchard

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Ants (Formicidae represent a taxonomically diverse group of hymenopterans with over 13,000 extant species, the majority of which inject or spray secretions from a venom gland. The evolutionary success of ants is mostly due to their unique eusociality that has permitted them to develop complex collaborative strategies, partly involving their venom secretions, to defend their nest against predators, microbial pathogens, ant competitors, and to hunt prey. Activities of ant venom include paralytic, cytolytic, haemolytic, allergenic, pro-inflammatory, insecticidal, antimicrobial, and pain-producing pharmacologic activities, while non-toxic functions include roles in chemical communication involving trail and sex pheromones, deterrents, and aggregators. While these diverse activities in ant venoms have until now been largely understudied due to the small venom yield from ants, modern analytical and venomic techniques are beginning to reveal the diversity of toxin structure and function. As such, ant venoms are distinct from other venomous animals, not only rich in linear, dimeric and disulfide-bonded peptides and bioactive proteins, but also other volatile and non-volatile compounds such as alkaloids and hydrocarbons. The present review details the unique structures and pharmacologies of known ant venom proteinaceous and alkaloidal toxins and their potential as a source of novel bioinsecticides and therapeutic agents.

  15. The Biochemical Toxin Arsenal from Ant Venoms

    Science.gov (United States)

    Touchard, Axel; Aili, Samira R.; Fox, Eduardo Gonçalves Paterson; Escoubas, Pierre; Orivel, Jérôme; Nicholson, Graham M.; Dejean, Alain

    2016-01-01

    Ants (Formicidae) represent a taxonomically diverse group of hymenopterans with over 13,000 extant species, the majority of which inject or spray secretions from a venom gland. The evolutionary success of ants is mostly due to their unique eusociality that has permitted them to develop complex collaborative strategies, partly involving their venom secretions, to defend their nest against predators, microbial pathogens, ant competitors, and to hunt prey. Activities of ant venom include paralytic, cytolytic, haemolytic, allergenic, pro-inflammatory, insecticidal, antimicrobial, and pain-producing pharmacologic activities, while non-toxic functions include roles in chemical communication involving trail and sex pheromones, deterrents, and aggregators. While these diverse activities in ant venoms have until now been largely understudied due to the small venom yield from ants, modern analytical and venomic techniques are beginning to reveal the diversity of toxin structure and function. As such, ant venoms are distinct from other venomous animals, not only rich in linear, dimeric and disulfide-bonded peptides and bioactive proteins, but also other volatile and non-volatile compounds such as alkaloids and hydrocarbons. The present review details the unique structures and pharmacologies of known ant venom proteinaceous and alkaloidal toxins and their potential as a source of novel bioinsecticides and therapeutic agents. PMID:26805882

  16. Identifying Hierarchical and Overlapping Protein Complexes Based on Essential Protein-Protein Interactions and “Seed-Expanding” Method

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jun Ren

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Many evidences have demonstrated that protein complexes are overlapping and hierarchically organized in PPI networks. Meanwhile, the large size of PPI network wants complex detection methods have low time complexity. Up to now, few methods can identify overlapping and hierarchical protein complexes in a PPI network quickly. In this paper, a novel method, called MCSE, is proposed based on λ-module and “seed-expanding.” First, it chooses seeds as essential PPIs or edges with high edge clustering values. Then, it identifies protein complexes by expanding each seed to a λ-module. MCSE is suitable for large PPI networks because of its low time complexity. MCSE can identify overlapping protein complexes naturally because a protein can be visited by different seeds. MCSE uses the parameter λ_th to control the range of seed expanding and can detect a hierarchical organization of protein complexes by tuning the value of λ_th. Experimental results of S. cerevisiae show that this hierarchical organization is similar to that of known complexes in MIPS database. The experimental results also show that MCSE outperforms other previous competing algorithms, such as CPM, CMC, Core-Attachment, Dpclus, HC-PIN, MCL, and NFC, in terms of the functional enrichment and matching with known protein complexes.

  17. Risk Assessment of Shellfish Toxins

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rex Munday

    2013-11-01

    Full Text Available Complex secondary metabolites, some of which are highly toxic to mammals, are produced by many marine organisms. Some of these organisms are important food sources for marine animals and, when ingested, the toxins that they produce may be absorbed and stored in the tissues of the predators, which then become toxic to animals higher up the food chain. This is a particular problem with shellfish, and many cases of poisoning are reported in shellfish consumers each year. At present, there is no practicable means of preventing uptake of the toxins by shellfish or of removing them after harvesting. Assessment of the risk posed by such toxins is therefore required in order to determine levels that are unlikely to cause adverse effects in humans and to permit the establishment of regulatory limits in shellfish for human consumption. In the present review, the basic principles of risk assessment are described, and the progress made toward robust risk assessment of seafood toxins is discussed. While good progress has been made, it is clear that further toxicological studies are required before this goal is fully achieved.

  18. Polymorphic toxin systems: Comprehensive characterization of trafficking modes, processing, mechanisms of action, immunity and ecology using comparative genomics

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zhang Dapeng

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Proteinaceous toxins are observed across all levels of inter-organismal and intra-genomic conflicts. These include recently discovered prokaryotic polymorphic toxin systems implicated in intra-specific conflicts. They are characterized by a remarkable diversity of C-terminal toxin domains generated by recombination with standalone toxin-coding cassettes. Prior analysis revealed a striking diversity of nuclease and deaminase domains among the toxin modules. We systematically investigated polymorphic toxin systems using comparative genomics, sequence and structure analysis. Results Polymorphic toxin systems are distributed across all major bacterial lineages and are delivered by at least eight distinct secretory systems. In addition to type-II, these include type-V, VI, VII (ESX, and the poorly characterized “Photorhabdus virulence cassettes (PVC”, PrsW-dependent and MuF phage-capsid-like systems. We present evidence that trafficking of these toxins is often accompanied by autoproteolytic processing catalyzed by HINT, ZU5, PrsW, caspase-like, papain-like, and a novel metallopeptidase associated with the PVC system. We identified over 150 distinct toxin domains in these systems. These span an extraordinary catalytic spectrum to include 23 distinct clades of peptidases, numerous previously unrecognized versions of nucleases and deaminases, ADP-ribosyltransferases, ADP ribosyl cyclases, RelA/SpoT-like nucleotidyltransferases, glycosyltranferases and other enzymes predicted to modify lipids and carbohydrates, and a pore-forming toxin domain. Several of these toxin domains are shared with host-directed effectors of pathogenic bacteria. Over 90 families of immunity proteins might neutralize anywhere between a single to at least 27 distinct types of toxin domains. In some organisms multiple tandem immunity genes or immunity protein domains are organized into polyimmunity loci or polyimmunity proteins. Gene-neighborhood-analysis of

  19. Acid Sphingomyelinase Promotes Cellular Internalization of Clostridium perfringens Iota-Toxin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nagahama, Masahiro; Takehara, Masaya; Miyamoto, Kazuaki; Ishidoh, Kazumi; Kobayashi, Keiko

    2018-05-20

    Clostridium perfringens iota-toxin is a binary actin-ADP-ribosylating toxin composed of the enzymatic component Ia and receptor binding component Ib. Ib binds to a cell surface receptor, forms Ib oligomer in lipid rafts, and associates with Ia. The Ia-Ib complex then internalizes by endocytosis. Here, we showed that acid sphingomyelinase (ASMase) facilitates the cellular uptake of iota-toxin. Inhibitions of ASMase and lysosomal exocytosis by respective blockers depressed cell rounding induced by iota-toxin. The cytotoxicity of the toxin increased in the presence of Ca 2+ in extracellular fluids. Ib entered target cells in the presence but not the absence of Ca 2+ . Ib induced the extracellular release of ASMase in the presence of Ca 2+ . ASMase siRNA prevented the cell rounding induced by iota-toxin. Furthermore, treatment of the cells with Ib resulted in the production of ceramide in cytoplasmic vesicles. These observations showed that ASMase promotes the internalization of iota-toxin into target cells.

  20. Modeling complexes of modeled proteins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Anishchenko, Ivan; Kundrotas, Petras J; Vakser, Ilya A

    2017-03-01

    Structural characterization of proteins is essential for understanding life processes at the molecular level. However, only a fraction of known proteins have experimentally determined structures. This fraction is even smaller for protein-protein complexes. Thus, structural modeling of protein-protein interactions (docking) primarily has to rely on modeled structures of the individual proteins, which typically are less accurate than the experimentally determined ones. Such "double" modeling is the Grand Challenge of structural reconstruction of the interactome. Yet it remains so far largely untested in a systematic way. We present a comprehensive validation of template-based and free docking on a set of 165 complexes, where each protein model has six levels of structural accuracy, from 1 to 6 Å C α RMSD. Many template-based docking predictions fall into acceptable quality category, according to the CAPRI criteria, even for highly inaccurate proteins (5-6 Å RMSD), although the number of such models (and, consequently, the docking success rate) drops significantly for models with RMSD > 4 Å. The results show that the existing docking methodologies can be successfully applied to protein models with a broad range of structural accuracy, and the template-based docking is much less sensitive to inaccuracies of protein models than the free docking. Proteins 2017; 85:470-478. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  1. Detecting protein complexes based on a combination of topological and biological properties in protein-protein interaction network

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pooja Sharma

    2018-06-01

    Full Text Available Protein complexes are known to play a major role in controlling cellular activity in a living being. Identifying complexes from raw protein protein interactions (PPIs is an important area of research. Earlier work has been limited mostly to yeast. Such protein complex identification methods, when applied to large human PPIs often give poor performance. We introduce a novel method called CSC to detect protein complexes. The method is evaluated in terms of positive predictive value, sensitivity and accuracy using the datasets of the model organism, yeast and humans. CSC outperforms several other competing algorithms for both organisms. Further, we present a framework to establish the usefulness of CSC in analyzing the influence of a given disease gene in a complex topologically as well as biologically considering eight major association factors. Keywords: Protein complex, Connectivity, Semantic similarity, Contribution

  2. Dynamics in electron transfer protein complexes

    OpenAIRE

    Bashir, Qamar

    2010-01-01

    Recent studies have provided experimental evidence for the existence of an encounter complex, a transient intermediate in the formation of protein complexes. We have used paramagnetic relaxation enhancement NMR spectroscopy in combination with Monte Carlo simulations to characterize and visualize the ensemble of encounter orientations in the short-lived electron transfer complex of yeast Cc and CcP. The complete conformational space sampled by the protein molecules during the dynamic part of ...

  3. High-resolution proteomic profiling of spider venom: expanding the toxin diversity of Phoneutria nigriventer venom.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liberato, Tarcísio; Troncone, Lanfranco Ranieri Paolo; Yamashiro, Edson T; Serrano, Solange M T; Zelanis, André

    2016-03-01

    Here we present a proteomic characterization of Phoneutria nigriventer venom. A shotgun proteomic approach allowed the identification, for the first time, of O-glycosyl hydrolases (chitinases) in P. nigriventer venom. The electrophoretic profiles under nonreducing and reducing conditions, and protein identification by mass spectrometry, indicated the presence of oligomeric toxin structures in the venom. Complementary proteomic approaches allowed for a qualitative and semi-quantitative profiling of P. nigriventer venom complexity, expanding its known venom proteome diversity.

  4. Mutagenic Deimmunization of Diphtheria Toxin for Use in Biologic Drug Development

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Joerg U. Schmohl

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available Background: Targeted toxins require multiple treatments and therefore must be deimmunized. We report a method of protein deimmunization based on the point mutation of highly hydrophilic R, K, D, E, and Q amino acids on the molecular surface of truncated diphtheria-toxin (DT390. Methods: Based on their surface position derived from an X-ray-crystallographic model, residues were chosen for point mutation that were located in prominent positions on the molecular surface and away from the catalytic site. Mice were immunized with a targeted toxin containing either a mutated DT390 containing seven critical point mutations or the non-mutated parental toxin form. Results: Serum analysis revealed a significant 90% reduction in anti-toxin antibodies in mice immunized with the mutant, but not the parental drug form despite multiple immunizations. The experiment was repeated in a second strain of mice with a different MHC-haplotype to address whether point mutation removed T or B cell epitopes. Findings were identical indicating that B cell epitopes were eliminated from DT. The mutant drug form lost only minimal activity in vitro as well as in vivo. Conclusion: These findings indicate that this method may be effective for deimmunizing of other proteins and that discovery of a deimmunized form of DT may lead to the development of more effective targeted toxin.

  5. Expression of Cry1Ac toxin-binding region in Plutella xyllostella cadherin-like receptor and studying their interaction mode by molecular docking and site-directed mutagenesis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hu, Xiaodan; Zhang, Xiao; Zhong, Jianfeng; Liu, Yuan; Zhang, Cunzheng; Xie, Yajing; Lin, Manman; Xu, Chongxin; Lu, Lina; Zhu, Qing; Liu, Xianjin

    2018-05-01

    Cadherin-like protein has been identified as the primary Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt) Cry toxin receptor in Lepidoptera pests and plays a key role in Cry toxin insecticidal. In this study, we successfully expressed the putative Cry1Ac toxin-binding region (CR7-CR11) of Plutella xylostella cadherin-like in Escherichia coli BL21 (DE3). The expressed CR7-CR11 fragment showed binding ability to Cry1Ac toxin under denaturing (Ligand blot) and non-denaturing (ELISA) conditions. The three-dimensional structure of CR7-CR11 was constructed by homology modeling. Molecular docking results of CR7-CR11 and Cry1Ac showed that domain II and domain III of Cry1Ac were taking part in binding to CR7-CR11, while CR7-CR8 was the region of CR7-CR11 in interacting with Cry1Ac. The interaction of toxin-receptor complex was found to arise from hydrogen bond and hydrophobic interaction. Through the computer-aided alanine mutation scanning, amino acid residues of Cry1Ac (Met341, Asn442 and Ser486) and CR7-CR11 (Asp32, Arg101 and Arg127) were predicted as the hot spot residues involved in the interaction of the toxin-receptor complex. At last, we verified the importance role of these key amino acid residues by binding assay. These results will lay a foundation for further elucidating the insecticidal mechanism of Cry toxin and enhancing Cry toxin insecticidal activity by molecular modification. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  6. Yeast β-1,6-glucan is a primary target for the Saccharomyces cerevisiae K2 toxin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lukša, Juliana; Podoliankaitė, Monika; Vepštaitė, Iglė; Strazdaitė-Žielienė, Živilė; Urbonavičius, Jaunius; Servienė, Elena

    2015-04-01

    Certain Saccharomyces cerevisiae strains secrete different killer proteins of double-stranded-RNA origin. These proteins confer a growth advantage to their host by increasing its survival. K2 toxin affects the target cell by binding to the cell surface, disrupting the plasma membrane integrity, and inducing ion leakage. In this study, we determined that K2 toxin saturates the yeast cell surface receptors in 10 min. The apparent amount of K2 toxin, bound to a single cell of wild type yeast under saturating conditions, was estimated to be 435 to 460 molecules. It was found that an increased level of β-1,6-glucan directly correlates with the number of toxin molecules bound, thereby impacting the morphology and determining the fate of the yeast cell. We observed that the binding of K2 toxin to the yeast surface receptors proceeds in a similar manner as in case of the related K1 killer protein. It was demonstrated that the externally supplied pustulan, a poly-β-1,6-glucan, but not the glucans bearing other linkage types (such as laminarin, chitin, and pullulan) efficiently inhibits the K2 toxin killing activity. In addition, the analysis of toxin binding to the intact cells and spheroplasts confirmed that majority of K2 protein molecules attach to the β-1,6-glucan, rather than the plasma membrane-localized receptors. Taken together, our results reveal that β-1,6-glucan is a primary target of K2 toxin and is important for the execution of its killing property. Copyright © 2015, American Society for Microbiology. All Rights Reserved.

  7. Studies on marine toxins: chemical and biological aspects

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Stonik, Valentin A; Stonik, Inna V

    2010-01-01

    The structures and mechanisms of biological action of the best known representatives of the main groups of marine toxins are presented. It is shown that many compounds have complex chemical structures and possess extremely high toxicities. Characteristic features of isolation, structure determination and syntheses of these compounds using the achievement of modern organic chemistry are discussed. The methods of identification and quantitative analysis of marine toxins are briefly reviewed.

  8. Drosophila protein interaction map (DPiM): a paradigm for metazoan protein complex interactions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guruharsha, K G; Obar, Robert A; Mintseris, Julian; Aishwarya, K; Krishnan, R T; Vijayraghavan, K; Artavanis-Tsakonas, Spyros

    2012-01-01

    Proteins perform essential cellular functions as part of protein complexes, often in conjunction with RNA, DNA, metabolites and other small molecules. The genome encodes thousands of proteins but not all of them are expressed in every cell type; and expressed proteins are not active at all times. Such diversity of protein expression and function accounts for the level of biological intricacy seen in nature. Defining protein-protein interactions in protein complexes, and establishing the when, what and where of potential interactions, is therefore crucial to understanding the cellular function of any protein-especially those that have not been well studied by traditional molecular genetic approaches. We generated a large-scale resource of affinity-tagged expression-ready clones and used co-affinity purification combined with tandem mass-spectrometry to identify protein partners of nearly 5,000 Drosophila melanogaster proteins. The resulting protein complex "map" provided a blueprint of metazoan protein complex organization. Here we describe how the map has provided valuable insights into protein function in addition to generating hundreds of testable hypotheses. We also discuss recent technological advancements that will be critical in addressing the next generation of questions arising from the map.

  9. The mining of toxin-like polypeptides from EST database by single residue distribution analysis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Grishin Eugene

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Novel high throughput sequencing technologies require permanent development of bioinformatics data processing methods. Among them, rapid and reliable identification of encoded proteins plays a pivotal role. To search for particular protein families, the amino acid sequence motifs suitable for selective screening of nucleotide sequence databases may be used. In this work, we suggest a novel method for simplified representation of protein amino acid sequences named Single Residue Distribution Analysis, which is applicable both for homology search and database screening. Results Using the procedure developed, a search for amino acid sequence motifs in sea anemone polypeptides was performed, and 14 different motifs with broad and low specificity were discriminated. The adequacy of motifs for mining toxin-like sequences was confirmed by their ability to identify 100% toxin-like anemone polypeptides in the reference polypeptide database. The employment of novel motifs for the search of polypeptide toxins in Anemonia viridis EST dataset allowed us to identify 89 putative toxin precursors. The translated and modified ESTs were scanned using a special algorithm. In addition to direct comparison with the motifs developed, the putative signal peptides were predicted and homology with known structures was examined. Conclusions The suggested method may be used to retrieve structures of interest from the EST databases using simple amino acid sequence motifs as templates. The efficiency of the procedure for directed search of polypeptides is higher than that of most currently used methods. Analysis of 39939 ESTs of sea anemone Anemonia viridis resulted in identification of five protein precursors of earlier described toxins, discovery of 43 novel polypeptide toxins, and prediction of 39 putative polypeptide toxin sequences. In addition, two precursors of novel peptides presumably displaying neuronal function were disclosed.

  10. The ColM Family, Polymorphic Toxins Breaching the Bacterial Cell Wall

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maarten G. K. Ghequire

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available Bacteria host an arsenal of antagonism-mediating molecules to combat for ecologic space. Bacteriocins represent a pivotal group of secreted antibacterial peptides and proteins assisting in this fight, mainly eliminating relatives. Colicin M, a model for peptidoglycan-interfering bacteriocins in Gram-negative bacteria, appears to be part of a set of polymorphic toxins equipped with such a catalytic domain (ColM targeting lipid II. Diversifying recombination has enabled parasitism of different receptors and has also given rise to hybrid bacteriocins in which ColM is associated with another toxin module. Remarkably, ColM toxins have recruited a diverse array of immunity partners, comprising cytoplasmic membrane-associated proteins with different topologies. Together, these findings suggest that different immunity mechanisms have evolved for ColM, in contrast to bacteriocins with nuclease activities.

  11. Agitation down-regulates immunoglobulin binding protein EibG expression in Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli (STEC.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thorsten Kuczius

    Full Text Available Shiga toxin (Stx-producing Escherichia coli (STEC carrying eibG synthesize Escherichia coli immunoglobulin binding protein (EibG. EibG nonspecifically binds to immunoglobulins and tends to aggregate in multimers but is poorly expressed in wild-type strains. To study synthesis of the proteins and their regulation in the pathogens, we identified natural growth conditions that increased EibG synthesis. EibG proteins as well as corresponding mRNA were highly expressed under static growth conditions while shearing stress created by agitation during growth repressed protein synthesis. Further regulation effects were driven by reduced oxygen tension, and pH up-regulated EibG expression, but to a lesser extent than growth conditions while decreased temperature down-regulated EibG. Bacteria with increased EibG expression during static growth conditions showed a distinct phenotype with chain formation and biofilm generation, which disappeared with motion. High and low EibG expression was reversible indicating a process with up- and down-regulation of the protein expression. Our findings indicate that shear stress represses EibG expression and might reduce bacterial attachments to cells and surfaces.

  12. Characterization of the Deep-Sea Streptomyces sp. SCSIO 02999 Derived VapC/VapB Toxin-Antitoxin System in Escherichia coli

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yunxue Guo

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available Toxin-antitoxin (TA systems are small genetic elements that are ubiquitous in prokaryotes. Most studies on TA systems have focused on commensal and pathogenic bacteria; yet very few studies have focused on TAs in marine bacteria, especially those isolated from a deep sea environment. Here, we characterized a type II VapC/VapB TA system from the deep-sea derived Streptomyces sp. SCSIO 02999. The VapC (virulence-associated protein protein belongs to the PIN (PilT N-terminal superfamily. Overproduction of VapC strongly inhibited cell growth and resulted in a bleb-containing morphology in E. coli. The toxicity of VapC was neutralized through direct protein–protein interaction by a small protein antitoxin VapB encoded by a neighboring gene. Antitoxin VapB alone or the VapB/VapC complex negatively regulated the vapBC promoter activity. We further revealed that three conserved Asp residues in the PIN domain were essential for the toxic effect of VapC. Additionally, the VapC/VapB TA system stabilized plasmid in E. coli. Furthermore, VapC cross-activated transcription of several TA operons via a partially Lon-dependent mechanism in E. coli, and the activated toxins accumulated more preferentially than their antitoxin partners. Collectively, we identified and characterized a new deep sea TA system in the deep sea Streptomyces sp. and demonstrated that the VapC toxin in this system can cross-activate TA operons in E. coli.

  13. Photolabeling of Glu-129 of the S-1 subunit of pertussis toxin with NAD

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Barbieri, J.T.; Mende-Mueller, L.M.; Rappuoli, R.; Collier, R.J. (Medical College of Wisconsin, Milwaukee (USA))

    1989-11-01

    UV irradiation was shown to induce efficient transfer of radiolabel from nicotinamide-labeled NAD to a recombinant protein (C180 peptide) containing the catalytic region of the S-1 subunit of pertussis toxin. Incorporation of label from (3H-nicotinamide)NAD was efficient (0.5 to 0.6 mol/mol of protein) relative to incorporation from (32P-adenylate)NAD (0.2 mol/mol of protein). Label from (3H-nicotinamide)NAD was specifically associated with Glu-129. Replacement of Glu-129 with glycine or aspartic acid made the protein refractory to photolabeling with (3H-nicotinamide)NAD, whereas replacement of a nearby glutamic acid, Glu-139, with serine did not. Photolabeling of the C180 peptide with NAD is similar to that observed with diphtheria toxin and exotoxin A of Pseudomonas aeruginosa, in which the nicotinamide portion of NAD is transferred to Glu-148 and Glu-553, respectively, in the two toxins. These results implicate Glu-129 of the S-1 subunit as an active-site residue and a potentially important site for genetic modification of pertussis toxin for development of an acellular vaccine against Bordetella pertussis.

  14. Photolabeling of Glu-129 of the S-1 subunit of pertussis toxin with NAD

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Barbieri, J.T.; Mende-Mueller, L.M.; Rappuoli, R.; Collier, R.J.

    1989-01-01

    UV irradiation was shown to induce efficient transfer of radiolabel from nicotinamide-labeled NAD to a recombinant protein (C180 peptide) containing the catalytic region of the S-1 subunit of pertussis toxin. Incorporation of label from [3H-nicotinamide]NAD was efficient (0.5 to 0.6 mol/mol of protein) relative to incorporation from [32P-adenylate]NAD (0.2 mol/mol of protein). Label from [3H-nicotinamide]NAD was specifically associated with Glu-129. Replacement of Glu-129 with glycine or aspartic acid made the protein refractory to photolabeling with [3H-nicotinamide]NAD, whereas replacement of a nearby glutamic acid, Glu-139, with serine did not. Photolabeling of the C180 peptide with NAD is similar to that observed with diphtheria toxin and exotoxin A of Pseudomonas aeruginosa, in which the nicotinamide portion of NAD is transferred to Glu-148 and Glu-553, respectively, in the two toxins. These results implicate Glu-129 of the S-1 subunit as an active-site residue and a potentially important site for genetic modification of pertussis toxin for development of an acellular vaccine against Bordetella pertussis

  15. A Mutational Analysis of Residues in Cholera Toxin A1 Necessary for Interaction with Its Substrate, the Stimulatory G Protein Gsα

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michael G. Jobling

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available Pathogenesis of cholera diarrhea requires cholera toxin (CT-mediated adenosine diphosphate (ADP-ribosylation of stimulatory G protein (Gsα in enterocytes. CT is an AB5 toxin with an inactive CTA1 domain linked via CTA2 to a pentameric receptor-binding B subunit. Allosterically activated CTA1 fragment in complex with NAD+ and GTP-bound ADP-ribosylation factor 6 (ARF6-GTP differs conformationally from the CTA1 domain in holotoxin. A surface-exposed knob and a short α-helix (formed, respectively, by rearranging “active-site” and “activation” loops in inactive CTA1 and an ADP ribosylating turn-turn (ARTT motif, all located near the CTA1 catalytic site, were evaluated for possible roles in recognizing Gsα. CT variants with one, two or three alanine substitutions at surface-exposed residues within these CTA1 motifs were tested for assembly into holotoxin and ADP-ribosylating activity against Gsα and diethylamino-(benzylidineamino-guanidine (DEABAG, a small substrate predicted to fit into the CTA1 active site. Variants with single alanine substitutions at H55, R67, L71, S78, or D109 had nearly wild-type activity with DEABAG but significantly decreased activity with Gsα, suggesting that the corresponding residues in native CTA1 participate in recognizing Gsα. As several variants with multiple substitutions at these positions retained partial activity against Gsα, other residues in CTA1 likely also participate in recognizing Gsα.

  16. Stool C difficile toxin

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... toxin; Colitis - toxin; Pseudomembranous - toxin; Necrotizing colitis - toxin; C difficile - toxin ... be analyzed. There are several ways to detect C difficile toxin in the stool sample. Enzyme immunoassay ( ...

  17. Cholera toxin B subunits assemble into pentamers--proposition of a fly-casting mechanism.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jihad Zrimi

    Full Text Available The cholera toxin B pentamer (CtxB(5, which belongs to the AB(5 toxin family, is used as a model study for protein assembly. The effect of the pH on the reassembly of the toxin was investigated using immunochemical, electrophoretic and spectroscopic methods. Three pH-dependent steps were identified during the toxin reassembly: (i acquisition of a fully assembly-competent fold by the CtxB monomer, (ii association of CtxB monomer into oligomers, (iii acquisition of the native fold by the CtxB pentamer. The results show that CtxB(5 and the related heat labile enterotoxin LTB(5 have distinct mechanisms of assembly despite sharing high sequence identity (84% and almost identical atomic structures. The difference can be pinpointed to four histidines which are spread along the protein sequence and may act together. Thus, most of the toxin B amino acids appear negligible for the assembly, raising the possibility that assembly is driven by a small network of amino acids instead of involving all of them.

  18. Receptor protein of Lysinibacillus sphaericus mosquito-larvicidal toxin displays amylomaltase activity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sharma, Mahima; Gupta, Gagan D; Kumar, Vinay

    2018-02-01

    The activated binary toxin (BinAB) from Lysinibacillus sphaericus binds to surface receptor protein (Cqm1) on the midgut cell membrane and kills Culex quinquefasciatus larvae on internalization. Cqm1 is attached to cells via a glycosyl-phosphatidylinositol (GPI) anchor. It has been classified as a member of glycoside hydrolase family 13 of the CAZy database. Here, we report characterization of the ordered domain (residues 23-560) of Cqm1. Gene expressing Cqm1 of BinAB susceptible mosquito was chemically synthesized and the protein was purified using E. coli expression system. Values for the Michaelis-Menten kinetics parameters towards 4-nitrophenyl α-D-glucopyranoside (α-pNPG) substrate were estimated to be 0.44 mM (Km) and 1.9 s -1 (kcat). Thin layer chromatography experiments established Cqm1 as α-glucosidase competent to cleave α-1,4-glycosidic bonds of maltose and maltotriose with high glycosyltransferase activity to form glucose-oligomers. The observed hydrolysis and synthesis of glucose-oligomers is consistent with open and accessible active-site in the structural model. The protein also hydrolyses glycogen and sucrose. These activities suggest that Cqm1 may be involved in carbohydrate metabolism in mosquitoes. Further, toxic BinA component does not inhibit α-glucosidase activity of Cqm1, while BinB reduced the activity by nearly 50%. The surface plasmon resonance study reveals strong binding of BinB with Cqm1 (Kd, 9.8 nM). BinA interaction with Cqm1 however, is 1000-fold weaker. Notably the estimated Kd values match well with dissociation constants reported earlier with larvae brush border membrane fractions. The Cqm1 protein forms a stable dimer that is consistent with its apical localization in lipid rafts. Its melting temperature (T m ) as observed by thermofluor-shift assay is 51.5 °C and Ca 2+ provides structural stability to the protein. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  19. The toxin-antitoxin εζ system: Role of ζ toxin in regulating ATP, GTP, (p)ppGpp and uridine diphosphate N-acetylglucosamine pool to cope with stress

    OpenAIRE

    Tabone, Mariangela

    2015-01-01

    Tesis doctoral inédita leída en la Universidad Autónoma de Madrid, Facultad de Ciencias, Departamento de Biología Molecular. Fecha de lectura: 27-10-2015 The toxin-antitoxin (TA) systems are compact modules, usually comprising a pair of genes coding for a toxin and its cognate antitoxin. These systems are present in the chromosomes of Bacteria, Archaea, in phages and in the large majority of low copy number plasmids. Basically, toxins are proteins whose activity usually leads to t...

  20. The DinJ/RelE toxin-antitoxin system suppresses virulence in Xylella fastidiosa

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xylella fastidiosa, the causal agent of a number agriculturally important plant diseases, encodes multiple toxin-antitoxin (TA) systems. TA modules consist of a toxin protein co-expressed with a specific antitoxin, and are often acquired through horizontal gene transfer. Antitoxin molecules (RNA or ...

  1. Exploration of the dynamic properties of protein complexes predicted from spatially constrained protein-protein interaction networks.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eric A Yen

    2014-05-01

    Full Text Available Protein complexes are not static, but rather highly dynamic with subunits that undergo 1-dimensional diffusion with respect to each other. Interactions within protein complexes are modulated through regulatory inputs that alter interactions and introduce new components and deplete existing components through exchange. While it is clear that the structure and function of any given protein complex is coupled to its dynamical properties, it remains a challenge to predict the possible conformations that complexes can adopt. Protein-fragment Complementation Assays detect physical interactions between protein pairs constrained to ≤8 nm from each other in living cells. This method has been used to build networks composed of 1000s of pair-wise interactions. Significantly, these networks contain a wealth of dynamic information, as the assay is fully reversible and the proteins are expressed in their natural context. In this study, we describe a method that extracts this valuable information in the form of predicted conformations, allowing the user to explore the conformational landscape, to search for structures that correlate with an activity state, and estimate the abundance of conformations in the living cell. The generator is based on a Markov Chain Monte Carlo simulation that uses the interaction dataset as input and is constrained by the physical resolution of the assay. We applied this method to an 18-member protein complex composed of the seven core proteins of the budding yeast Arp2/3 complex and 11 associated regulators and effector proteins. We generated 20,480 output structures and identified conformational states using principle component analysis. We interrogated the conformation landscape and found evidence of symmetry breaking, a mixture of likely active and inactive conformational states and dynamic exchange of the core protein Arc15 between core and regulatory components. Our method provides a novel tool for prediction and

  2. Solid-phase synthesis and biological evaluation of Joro spider toxin-4 from Nephila clavata

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Barslund, Anne Fuglsang; Poulsen, Mette Homann; Bach, Tinna Brøbech

    2011-01-01

    Polyamine toxins from orb weaver spiders are attractive pharmacological tools particularly for studies of ionotropic glutamate (iGlu) receptors in the brain. These polyamine toxins are biosynthesized in a combinatorial manner, providing a plethora of related, but structurally complex toxins...... to be exploited in biological studies. Here, we have used solid-phase synthetic methodology for the efficient synthesis of Joro spider toxin-4 (JSTX-4) (1) from Nephila clavata, providing sufficient amounts of the toxin for biological evaluation at iGlu receptor subtypes using electrophysiology. Biological...

  3. Studies on the interaction between marine polyether toxins and the voltage sensitive sodium channel

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Tachibana, Kazuo; Konoki, Keichi; Fukuzawa, Seketsu

    2003-01-01

    An analysis was made on three-dimensional structure of membrane proteins by prolonging the activated state of membrane protein using external factors like natural toxins having a strong affinity to the activated state. In addition, this study aimed to clarify the structural basis for the activation of membrane proteins. First, functional analysis was made for the complex of potential-dependent Na channel and brevetoxin, marine polycyclic toxin. Then, its binding site was determined using photo-affinity labeling. Next, an investigation was made on intracellular target molecule of ritteragine B, a cytotoxic steroidal alkaloid isolated from Retterella tokioka Kott in 1992. This molecule was used to elucidate the mechanism of cell growth. It was suggested that the cytotoxity of ritteragine was not due to non-specific interaction with cell membrane, but due to an inhibition of some physiological activity through interaction with its target molecule. Furthermore, functional mechanism of norzoanthamine, a marine anti-osteoporosis alkaloid isolated from Zoanthus sp. was investigated using ovariectomized mouse as a postomenopausal osteoporosis model. It was demonstrated that the marine alkaloid is strongly inhibitory to lowering of bone weight and strength. To elucidate the physiological effects of zoanthamine in molecular level, construction of in vitro experimental system was made using human epithelial osteoblast, Saos-2, in which production of TGF-β has been demonstrated. When added with norzoanthamine to the model system, stimulative effects on its cell growth and adhesion were observed, indicating the expression of its target molecule. Additionally, functional analysis was made on okadaic acid binding protein, OABP-2. It has been reported that okadaic acid, a marine polyether toxin isolated from Halichondria okadai was strongly cytotoxic because of protein phosphatase activity. Since okadaic acid has been demonstrated to be also toxic to the host, sponge, it has been

  4. Construction of ontology augmented networks for protein complex prediction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Yijia; Lin, Hongfei; Yang, Zhihao; Wang, Jian

    2013-01-01

    Protein complexes are of great importance in understanding the principles of cellular organization and function. The increase in available protein-protein interaction data, gene ontology and other resources make it possible to develop computational methods for protein complex prediction. Most existing methods focus mainly on the topological structure of protein-protein interaction networks, and largely ignore the gene ontology annotation information. In this article, we constructed ontology augmented networks with protein-protein interaction data and gene ontology, which effectively unified the topological structure of protein-protein interaction networks and the similarity of gene ontology annotations into unified distance measures. After constructing ontology augmented networks, a novel method (clustering based on ontology augmented networks) was proposed to predict protein complexes, which was capable of taking into account the topological structure of the protein-protein interaction network, as well as the similarity of gene ontology annotations. Our method was applied to two different yeast protein-protein interaction datasets and predicted many well-known complexes. The experimental results showed that (i) ontology augmented networks and the unified distance measure can effectively combine the structure closeness and gene ontology annotation similarity; (ii) our method is valuable in predicting protein complexes and has higher F1 and accuracy compared to other competing methods.

  5. New low-flux mixed matrix membranes that offer superior removal of protein-bound toxins from human plasma

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pavlenko, Denys; van Geffen, Esmée; van Steenbergen, Mies J.; Glorieux, Griet; Vanholder, Raymond; Gerritsen, Karin G. F.; Stamatialis, Dimitrios

    2016-10-01

    Hemodialysis is a widely available and well-established treatment for patients with End Stage Renal Disease (ESRD). However, although life-sustaining, patient mortality rates are very high. Several recent studies corroborated the link between dialysis patients’ outcomes and elevated levels of protein-bound uremic toxins (PBUT) that are poorly removed by conventional hemodialysis. Therefore, new treatments are needed to improve their removal. Recently, our group showed that the combination of dialysis and adsorption on one membrane, the mixed matrix membrane (MMM), can effectively remove those toxins from human plasma. However, these first MMMs were rather large in diameter and their mass transport characteristics needed improvement before application in the clinical setting. Therefore, in this study we developed a new generation of MMMs that have a smaller diameter and optimized characteristics offering superior ability in removing the PBUT indoxyl sulfate (IS) and p-cresyl sulfate (pCS) in comparison to first generation MMMs (30 and 125% respectively), as well as, a commercial dialysis membrane (more than 100% better removal).

  6. Pertussis toxin inhibits somatostatin-induced K+ conductance in human pituitary tumor cells

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Yamashita, N.; Kojima, I.; Shibuya, N.; Ogata, E.

    1987-01-01

    The effect of pertussis toxin on somatostatin-induced K + current was examined in dissociated human pituitary tumor cells obtained from two acromegalic patients. Somatostatin-induced hyperpolarization or K + current was observed in 20 of 23 cells in adenoma 1 and 10 of 11 cells in adenoma 2. After treatment with pertussis toxin for 24 h, these responses were completely suppressed (0/14 in adenoma, 1, 0/10 in adenoma 2). Spontaneous action potentials, K + , Na + , and Ca 2+ currents were well preserved after pertussis toxin treatment. When crude membrane fraction was incubated with [ 32 P]NAD, a 41K protein was ADP-ribosylated by pertussis toxin. Hormone release was inhibited by somatostatin and this inhibition was blocked by pertussis toxin treatment

  7. High-resolution diffraction from crystals of a membrane-protein complex: bacterial outer membrane protein OmpC complexed with the antibacterial eukaryotic protein lactoferrin

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sundara Baalaji, N.; Acharya, K. Ravi; Singh, T. P.; Krishnaswamy, S.

    2005-01-01

    Crystals of the complex formed between the bacterial membrane protein OmpC and the antibacterial protein lactoferrin suitable for high-resolution structure determination have been obtained. The crystals belong to the hexagonal space group P6, with unit-cell parameters a = b = 116.3, c = 152.4 Å. Crystals of the complex formed between the outer membrane protein OmpC from Escherichia coli and the eukaryotic antibacterial protein lactoferrin from Camelus dromedarius (camel) have been obtained using a detergent environment. Initial data processing suggests that the crystals belong to the hexagonal space group P6, with unit-cell parameters a = b = 116.3, c = 152.4 Å, α = β = 90, γ = 120°. This indicated a Matthews coefficient (V M ) of 3.3 Å 3 Da −1 , corresponding to a possible molecular complex involving four molecules of lactoferrin and two porin trimers in the unit cell (4832 amino acids; 533.8 kDa) with 63% solvent content. A complete set of diffraction data was collected to 3 Å resolution at 100 K. Structure determination by molecular replacement is in progress. Structural study of this first surface-exposed membrane-protein complex with an antibacterial protein will provide insights into the mechanism of action of OmpC as well as lactoferrin

  8. Palytoxin: a new marine toxin from a coelenterate.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moore, R E; Scheuer, P J

    1971-04-30

    Palytoxin has been isolated from the zoanthids "limu-make-o-Hana" (Tentatively identified as Palythoa sp.) as a noncrystalline, chromatographically pure entity. Apart from polypeptide and protein toxins, it is the most highly toxic substance known, with a lethal dose (LD(59)) in mice of 0.15 microgram per kilogram by intravenous injection. Unlike the potent toxins batrachotoxin, saxitoxin, and tetrodotoxin which have molecular weights of 500 or less, palytoxin has an estimated molecular weight of 3300 and contains no repetitive amino acid or sugar units.

  9. Autoradiographic assay of mutants resistant to diphtheria toxin in mammalian cells in vitro

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ronen, A.; Gingerich, J.D.; Duncan, A.M.V.; Heddle, J.A.

    1984-01-01

    Diptheria toxin kills mammalian cells by ribosylating elongation factor 2, a protein factor necessary for protein synthesis. The frequency of cells able to form colonies in the presence of the toxin can be used as an assay for mutation to diphtheria toxin resistance. Resistance to diphtheria toxin can also be detected autoradiographically in cells exposed to [ 3 H]leucine after treatment with the toxin. In cultures of Chinese hamster ovary cells, the frequency of such resistant cells is increased by exposure of the cells to γ-rays, ultraviolet light, ethylnitrosourea, mitomycin c, ethidium bromide, and 5-bromo-2'-deoxyuridine in a dose- and time-dependent manner. The resistant cells form discrete microcolonies if they are allowed to divide several times before intoxication which indicates that they are genuine mutants. The assay is potentially adaptable to any cell population that can be intoxicated with diphtheria toxin and labeled with [ 3 H]leucine, whether or not the cells can form colonies. It may be useful, therefore, for measuring mutation rates in slowly growing or nondividing cell populations such as breast, brain, and liver, as well as in cells that do divide but cannot be readily cloned, such as the colonic epithelium. 23 references, 6 figures

  10. DNA-protein complexes induced by chromate and other carcinogens

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Costa, M.

    1991-01-01

    DNA-protein complexes induced in intact Chinese hamster ovary cells by chromate have been isolated, analyzed, and compared with those induced by cis-platinum, ultraviolet light, and formaldehyde. Actin has been identified as one of the major proteins complexed to DNA by chromate based upon its molecular weight, isoelectric point, positive reaction with an actin polyclonal antibody, and proteolytic mapping. Chromate and cis-platinum both complex proteins of similar molecular weight and isoelectric point, positive reaction with an actin polyclonal antibody, and proteolytic mapping. Chromate and cis-platinum both complex proteins of similar molecular weight and isoelectric points, and these complexes can be disrupted by chelating agents and sulfhydryl reducing agents, suggesting that the metal itself is participating in binding rather than having a catalytic or indirect role (i.e., oxygen radicals). In contrast, formaldehyde complexed histones to the DNA, and these complexes were not disrupted by chelating or reducing agents. An antiserum raised to chromate-induced DNA-protein complexes reacted primarily with 97,000 kDa protein that did not silver stain. Slot blots, as well as Western blots, were used to detect formation of p97 DNA crosslinks. This protein was complexed to the DNA by all four agents studied

  11. Botulinum toxin drugs: brief history and outlook.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dressler, D

    2016-03-01

    The global botulinum toxin (BT) market is currently undergoing rapid changes: this may be the time to review the history and the future of BT drug development. Since the early 1990s Botox(®) and Dysport(®) dominated the international BT market. Later, Myobloc(®)/NeuroBloc(®), a liquid BT type B drug, came out, but failed. Xeomin(®) is the latest major BT drug. It features removal of complexing proteins and improved neurotoxin purity. Several new BT drugs are coming out of Korea, China and Russia. Scientific challenges for BT drug development include modification of BT's duration of action, its transdermal transport and the design of BT hybrid drugs for specific target tissues. The increased competition will change the global BT market fundamentally and a re-organisation according to large indication groups, such as therapeutic and cosmetic applications, might occur.

  12. Bithionol blocks pathogenicity of bacterial toxins, ricin, and Zika virus

    Science.gov (United States)

    Disease pathways form overlapping networks, and hub proteins represent attractive targets for broad-spectrum drugs. Using bacterial toxins as a proof of concept, we describe a new approach of discovering broad-spectrum therapies capable of inhibiting host proteins that mediate multiple pathogenic pa...

  13. Dinophysis Toxins: Causative Organisms, Distribution and Fate in Shellfish

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Beatriz Reguera

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Several Dinophysis species produce diarrhoetic toxins (okadaic acid and dinophysistoxins and pectenotoxins, and cause gastointestinal illness, Diarrhetic Shellfish Poisoning (DSP, even at low cell densities (<103 cells·L−1. They are the main threat, in terms of days of harvesting bans, to aquaculture in Northern Japan, Chile, and Europe. Toxicity and toxin profiles are very variable, more between strains than species. The distribution of DSP events mirrors that of shellfish production areas that have implemented toxin regulations, otherwise misinterpreted as bacterial or viral contamination. Field observations and laboratory experiments have shown that most of the toxins produced by Dinophysis are released into the medium, raising questions about the ecological role of extracelular toxins and their potential uptake by shellfish. Shellfish contamination results from a complex balance between food selection, adsorption, species-specific enzymatic transformations, and allometric processes. Highest risk areas are those combining Dinophysis strains with high cell content of okadaates, aquaculture with predominance of mytilids (good accumulators of toxins, and consumers who frequently include mussels in their diet. Regions including pectenotoxins in their regulated phycotoxins will suffer from much longer harvesting bans and from disloyal competition with production areas where these toxins have been deregulated.

  14. Detection of Cholera Toxin by Optical Methods: A Mechanism-Based Approach to the Generic Detection of Protein Toxins

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Young, Ronald

    1997-01-01

    ... after its ADP-ribosylation. The sensitive technique of fluorescence spectroscopy can be employed to monitor the action of cholera toxin without regards to the substituents on the acceptor molecule by use of epsilon NAD...

  15. Treatment of anismus in intractable constipation with botulinum A toxin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hallan, R I; Williams, N S; Melling, J; Waldron, D J; Womack, N R; Morrison, J F

    1988-09-24

    In seven patients with anismus the striated sphincter muscle complex was selectively weakened by local injection of Clostridium botulinum type A toxin. Symptom scores improved significantly and correlated with a significant reduction in the maximum voluntary and canal squeeze pressure and a significant increase in the anorectal angle on straining. Botulinum A toxin seems to be promising treatment for some patients with anismus.

  16. Cholix Toxin, a Novel ADP-ribosylating Factor from Vibrio cholerae

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Jorgensen, Rene; Purdy, Alexandra E.; Fieldhouse, Robert J.; Kimber, Matthew S.; Bartlett, Douglas H.; Merrill, A. Rod (Guelph); (NIH); (UCSD)

    2008-07-15

    The ADP-ribosyltransferases are a class of enzymes that display activity in a variety of bacterial pathogens responsible for causing diseases in plants and animals, including those affecting mankind, such as diphtheria, cholera, and whooping cough. We report the characterization of a novel toxin from Vibrio cholerae, which we call cholix toxin. The toxin is active against mammalian cells (IC50 = 4.6 {+-} 0.4 ng/ml) and crustaceans (Artemia nauplii LD50 = 10 {+-} 2 {mu}g/ml). Here we show that this toxin is the third member of the diphthamide-specific class of ADP-ribose transferases and that it possesses specific ADP-ribose transferase activity against ribosomal eukaryotic elongation factor 2. We also describe the high resolution crystal structures of the multidomain toxin and its catalytic domain at 2.1- and 1.25-{angstrom} resolution, respectively. The new structural data show that cholix toxin possesses the necessary molecular features required for infection of eukaryotes by receptor-mediated endocytosis, translocation to the host cytoplasm, and inhibition of protein synthesis by specific modification of elongation factor 2. The crystal structures also provide important insight into the structural basis for activation of toxin ADP-ribosyltransferase activity. These results indicate that cholix toxin may be an important virulence factor of Vibrio cholerae that likely plays a significant role in the survival of the organism in an aquatic environment.

  17. Protein complex prediction via dense subgraphs and false positive analysis.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cecilia Hernandez

    Full Text Available Many proteins work together with others in groups called complexes in order to achieve a specific function. Discovering protein complexes is important for understanding biological processes and predict protein functions in living organisms. Large-scale and throughput techniques have made possible to compile protein-protein interaction networks (PPI networks, which have been used in several computational approaches for detecting protein complexes. Those predictions might guide future biologic experimental research. Some approaches are topology-based, where highly connected proteins are predicted to be complexes; some propose different clustering algorithms using partitioning, overlaps among clusters for networks modeled with unweighted or weighted graphs; and others use density of clusters and information based on protein functionality. However, some schemes still require much processing time or the quality of their results can be improved. Furthermore, most of the results obtained with computational tools are not accompanied by an analysis of false positives. We propose an effective and efficient mining algorithm for discovering highly connected subgraphs, which is our base for defining protein complexes. Our representation is based on transforming the PPI network into a directed acyclic graph that reduces the number of represented edges and the search space for discovering subgraphs. Our approach considers weighted and unweighted PPI networks. We compare our best alternative using PPI networks from Saccharomyces cerevisiae (yeast and Homo sapiens (human with state-of-the-art approaches in terms of clustering, biological metrics and execution times, as well as three gold standards for yeast and two for human. Furthermore, we analyze false positive predicted complexes searching the PDBe (Protein Data Bank in Europe database in order to identify matching protein complexes that have been purified and structurally characterized. Our analysis shows

  18. A Novel Tenebrio molitor Cadherin Is a Functional Receptor for Bacillus thuringiensis Cry3Aa Toxin*

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fabrick, Jeff; Oppert, Cris; Lorenzen, Marcé D.; Morris, Kaley; Oppert, Brenda; Jurat-Fuentes, Juan Luis

    2009-01-01

    Cry toxins produced by the bacterium Bacillus thuringiensis are effective biological insecticides. Cadherin-like proteins have been reported as functional Cry1A toxin receptors in Lepidoptera. Here we present data that demonstrate that a coleopteran cadherin is a functional Cry3Aa toxin receptor. The Cry3Aa receptor cadherin was cloned from Tenebrio molitor larval midgut mRNA, and the predicted protein, TmCad1, has domain structure and a putative toxin binding region similar to those in lepidopteran cadherin B. thuringiensis receptors. A peptide containing the putative toxin binding region from TmCad1 bound specifically to Cry3Aa and promoted the formation of Cry3Aa toxin oligomers, proposed to be mediators of toxicity in lepidopterans. Injection of TmCad1-specific double-stranded RNA into T. molitor larvae resulted in knockdown of the TmCad1 transcript and conferred resistance to Cry3Aa toxicity. These data demonstrate the functional role of TmCad1 as a Cry3Aa receptor in T. molitor and reveal similarities between the mode of action of Cry toxins in Lepidoptera and Coleoptera. PMID:19416969

  19. Effect of Bacillus thuringiensis parasporal toxin on stimulating of IL-2 and IL-5 cytokines production

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marzieh Soleimany

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available Introduction:Bacillus thuringiensis, is a Gram-positive spore-forming bacterium that produces crystalline parasporal protein (Cry during sporulation. Some of these Cry toxins do not show cytotoxicity against insects but they are capable to kill some human and animal cancer cells. The aim of this study was to verify whether cytocidal parasporal of B thuringiensis strains have immunostimulatory activity on human peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMNC and to evaluate the ability of IL-2 and IL-5 production. Materials and methods: B. thuringiensis toxin with cytocidal activity was isolated and treated with proteinase K. PBMNC was cultured and treated with activated crystal proteins. We evaluated the ability of different cytokines production with Flow Cytometry. Results: In this study, immune stimulatory toxins Cry1 were distinguished. This toxin can stimulate production of cytokines IL-2 and stop production of IL-5. Discussion and conclusion: According to anti-cancer effect of B. thuringiensis toxins and also immune stimulatory effect, with more research these toxins can be introduced as immunotherapy drug in cancer treatment.

  20. Bioengineered kidney tubules efficiently excrete uremic toxins

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Jansen, Jitske; Fedecostante, M.; Wilmer, M.; Peters, J.G.; Kreuser, U.M.; Broek, P.H.; Mensink, R.A.; Boltje, T.J.; Stamatialis, Dimitrios; Wetzels, J.F.; van der Heuvel, L.P.; Hoenderop, J.G.; Masereeuw, R.

    2016-01-01

    The development of a biotechnological platform for the removal of waste products (e.g. uremic toxins), often bound to proteins in plasma, is a prerequisite to improve current treatment modalities for patients suffering from end stage renal disease (ESRD). Here, we present a newly designed

  1. Effects of ionizing radiations on DNA-protein complexes; Effets des radiations ionisantes sur des complexes ADN-proteine

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Gillard, N

    2005-11-15

    The radio-induced destruction of DNA-protein complexes may have serious consequences for systems implicated in important cellular functions. The first system which has been studied is the lactose operon system, that regulates gene expression in Escherichia coli. First of all, the repressor-operator complex is destroyed after irradiation of the complex or of the protein alone. The damaging of the domain of repressor binding to DNA (headpiece) has been demonstrated and studied from the point of view of peptide chain integrity, conformation and amino acids damages. Secondly, dysfunctions of the in vitro induction of an irradiated repressor-unirradiated DNA complex have been observed. These perturbations, due to a decrease of the number of inducer binding sites, are correlated to the damaging of tryptophan residues. Moreover, the inducer protects the repressor when they are irradiated together, both by acting as a scavenger in the bulk, and by the masking of its binding site on the protein. The second studied system is formed by Fpg (for Formamido pyrimidine glycosylase), a DNA repair protein and a DNA with an oxidative lesion. The results show that irradiation disturbs the repair both by decreasing its efficiency of DNA lesion recognition and binding, and by altering its enzymatic activity. (author)

  2. Prevalence and Toxin Characteristics of Bacillus thuringiensis Isolated from Organic Vegetables.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Jung-Beom; Choi, Ok-Kyung; Kwon, Sun-Mok; Cho, Seung-Hak; Park, Byung-Jae; Jin, Na Young; Yu, Yong Man; Oh, Deog-Hwan

    2017-08-28

    The prevalence and toxin characteristics of Bacillus thuringiensis isolated from 39 organic vegetables were investigated. B. thuringiensis was detected in 30 out of the 39 organic vegetables (76.9%) with a mean value of 2.60 log CFU/g. Twenty-five out of the 30 B. thuringiensis isolates (83.3%) showed insecticidal toxicity against Spodoptera exigua . The hblCDA, nheABC , and entFM genes were found to be the major toxin genes, but the ces gene was not detected in any of the tested B. thuringiensis isolates. The hemolysin BL enterotoxin was detected in all 30 B. thuringiensis isolates (100%). The non-hemolytic enterotoxin complex was found in 27 out of 30 B. thuringiensis isolates (90.0%). The B. thuringiensis tested in this study had similar toxin gene characteristics to B. cereus , which possessed more than one toxin gene. B. thuringiensis could have the potential risk of foodborne illness based on the toxin genes and toxin-producing ability.

  3. Toxic and nontoxic components of botulinum neurotoxin complex are evolved from a common ancestral zinc protein

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Inui, Ken; Sagane, Yoshimasa; Miyata, Keita; Miyashita, Shin-Ichiro; Suzuki, Tomonori; Shikamori, Yasuyuki; Ohyama, Tohru; Niwa, Koichi; Watanabe, Toshihiro

    2012-01-01

    Highlights: ► BoNT and NTNHA proteins share a similar protein architecture. ► NTNHA and BoNT were both identified as zinc-binding proteins. ► NTNHA does not have a classical HEXXH zinc-coordinating motif similar to that found in all serotypes of BoNT. ► Homology modeling implied probable key residues involved in zinc coordination. -- Abstract: Zinc atoms play an essential role in a number of enzymes. Botulinum neurotoxin (BoNT), the most potent toxin known in nature, is a zinc-dependent endopeptidase. Here we identify the nontoxic nonhemagglutinin (NTNHA), one of the BoNT-complex constituents, as a zinc-binding protein, along with BoNT. A protein structure classification database search indicated that BoNT and NTNHA share a similar domain architecture, comprising a zinc-dependent metalloproteinase-like, BoNT coiled-coil motif and concanavalin A-like domains. Inductively coupled plasma-mass spectrometry analysis demonstrated that every single NTNHA molecule contains a single zinc atom. This is the first demonstration of a zinc atom in this protein, as far as we know. However, the NTNHA molecule does not possess any known zinc-coordinating motif, whereas all BoNT serotypes possess the classical HEXXH motif. Homology modeling of the NTNHA structure implied that a consensus K-C-L-I-K-X 35 -D sequence common among all NTNHA serotype molecules appears to coordinate a single zinc atom. These findings lead us to propose that NTNHA and BoNT may have evolved distinct functional specializations following their branching out from a common ancestral zinc protein.

  4. Lysionotin attenuates Staphylococcus aureus pathogenicity by inhibiting α-toxin expression.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Teng, Zihao; Shi, Dongxue; Liu, Huanyu; Shen, Ziying; Zha, Yonghong; Li, Wenhua; Deng, Xuming; Wang, Jianfeng

    2017-09-01

    α-Toxin, one of the best known pore-forming proteins produced by Staphylococcus aureus (S. aureus), is a critical virulence factor in multiple infections. The necessity of α-toxin for S. aureus pathogenicity suggests that this toxin is an important target for the development of a potential treatment strategy. In this study, we showed that lysionotin, a natural compound, can inhibit the hemolytic activity of culture supernatants by S. aureus by reducing α-toxin expression. Using real-time PCR analysis, we showed that transcription of hla (the gene encoding α-toxin) and agr (the locus regulating hla) was significantly inhibited by lysionotin. Lactate dehydrogenase and live/dead assays indicated that lysionotin effectively protected human alveolar epithelial cells against S. aureus, and in vivo studies also demonstrated that lysionotin can protect mice from pneumonia caused by S. aureus. These findings suggest that lysionotin is an efficient inhibitor of α-toxin expression and shows significant protection against S. aureus in vitro and in vivo. This study supports a potential strategy for the treatment of S. aureus infection by inhibiting the expression of virulence factors and indicates that lysionotin may be a potential treatment for S. aureus pneumonia.

  5. An insecticidal toxin from Nephila clavata spider venom.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jin, Lin; Fang, Mingqian; Chen, Mengrou; Zhou, Chunling; Ombati, Rose; Hakim, Md Abdul; Mo, Guoxiang; Lai, Ren; Yan, Xiuwen; Wang, Yumin; Yang, Shilong

    2017-07-01

    Spiders are the most successful insect predators given that they use their venom containing insecticidal peptides as biochemical weapons for preying. Due to the high specificity and potency of peptidic toxins, discoveries of insecticidal toxins from spider venom have provided an opportunity to obtain natural compounds for agricultural applications without affecting human health. In this study, a novel insecticidal toxin (μ-NPTX-Nc1a) was identified and characterized from the venom of Nephila clavata. Its primary sequence is GCNPDCTGIQCGWPRCPGGQNPVMDKCVSCCPFCPPKSAQG which was determined by automated Edman degradation, cDNA cloning, and MS/MS analysis. BLAST search indicated that Nc1a shows no similarity with known peptides or proteins, indicating that Nc1a belongs to a novel family of insecticidal peptide. Nc1a displayed inhibitory effects on Na V and K V channels in cockroach dorsal unpaired median neurons. The median lethal dose (LD50) of Nc1a on cockroach was 573 ng/g. Herein, a study that identifies a novel insecticidal toxin, which can be a potential candidate and/or template for the development of bioinsecticides, is presented.

  6. Discovering functional interdependence relationship in PPI networks for protein complex identification.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lam, Winnie W M; Chan, Keith C C

    2012-04-01

    Protein molecules interact with each other in protein complexes to perform many vital functions, and different computational techniques have been developed to identify protein complexes in protein-protein interaction (PPI) networks. These techniques are developed to search for subgraphs of high connectivity in PPI networks under the assumption that the proteins in a protein complex are highly interconnected. While these techniques have been shown to be quite effective, it is also possible that the matching rate between the protein complexes they discover and those that are previously determined experimentally be relatively low and the "false-alarm" rate can be relatively high. This is especially the case when the assumption of proteins in protein complexes being more highly interconnected be relatively invalid. To increase the matching rate and reduce the false-alarm rate, we have developed a technique that can work effectively without having to make this assumption. The name of the technique called protein complex identification by discovering functional interdependence (PCIFI) searches for protein complexes in PPI networks by taking into consideration both the functional interdependence relationship between protein molecules and the network topology of the network. The PCIFI works in several steps. The first step is to construct a multiple-function protein network graph by labeling each vertex with one or more of the molecular functions it performs. The second step is to filter out protein interactions between protein pairs that are not functionally interdependent of each other in the statistical sense. The third step is to make use of an information-theoretic measure to determine the strength of the functional interdependence between all remaining interacting protein pairs. Finally, the last step is to try to form protein complexes based on the measure of the strength of functional interdependence and the connectivity between proteins. For performance evaluation

  7. Simulating evolution of protein complexes through gene duplication and co-option.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Haarsma, Loren; Nelesen, Serita; VanAndel, Ethan; Lamine, James; VandeHaar, Peter

    2016-06-21

    We present a model of the evolution of protein complexes with novel functions through gene duplication, mutation, and co-option. Under a wide variety of input parameters, digital organisms evolve complexes of 2-5 bound proteins which have novel functions but whose component proteins are not independently functional. Evolution of complexes with novel functions happens more quickly as gene duplication rates increase, point mutation rates increase, protein complex functional probability increases, protein complex functional strength increases, and protein family size decreases. Evolution of complexity is inhibited when the metabolic costs of making proteins exceeds the fitness gain of having functional proteins, or when point mutation rates get so large the functional proteins undergo deleterious mutations faster than new functional complexes can evolve. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  8. Lysenin Toxin Membrane Insertion Is pH-Dependent but Independent of Neighboring Lysenins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Munguira, Ignacio L B; Takahashi, Hirohide; Casuso, Ignacio; Scheuring, Simon

    2017-11-07

    Pore-forming toxins form a family of proteins that act as virulence factors of pathogenic bacteria, but similar proteins are found in all kingdoms of life, including the vertebrate immune system. They are secreted as soluble monomers that oligomerize on target membranes in the so-called prepore state; after activation, they insert into the membrane and adopt the pore state. Lysenin is a pore-forming toxin from the earthworm Eisenida foetida, of which both the soluble and membrane-inserted structures are solved. However, the activation and membrane-insertion mechanisms have remained elusive. Here, we used high-speed atomic force microscopy to directly visualize the membrane-insertion mechanism. Changing the environmental pH from pH 7.5 to below pH 6.0 favored membrane insertion. We detected a short α-helix in the soluble structure that comprised three glutamic acids (Glu92, Glu94, and Glu97) that we hypothesized may represent a pH-sensor (as in similar toxins, e.g., Listeriolysin). Mutant lysenin still can form pores, but mutating these glutamic acids to glutamines rendered the toxin pH-insensitive. On the other hand, toxins in the pore state did not favor insertion of neighboring prepores; indeed, pore insertion breaks the hexagonal ordered domains of prepores and separates from neighboring molecules in the membrane. pH-dependent activation of toxins may represent a common feature of pore-forming toxins. High-speed atomic force microscopy with single-molecule resolution at high temporal resolution and the possibility of exchanging buffers during the experiments presents itself as a unique tool for the study of toxin-state conversion. Copyright © 2017 Biophysical Society. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  9. Binding of ATP by pertussis toxin and isolated toxin subunits

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hausman, S.Z.; Manclark, C.R.; Burns, D.L.

    1990-01-01

    The binding of ATP to pertussis toxin and its components, the A subunit and B oligomer, was investigated. Whereas, radiolabeled ATP bound to the B oligomer and pertussis toxin, no binding to the A subunit was observed. The binding of [ 3 H]ATP to pertussis toxin and the B oligomer was inhibited by nucleotides. The relative effectiveness of the nucleotides was shown to be ATP > GTP > CTP > TTP for pertussis toxin and ATP > GTP > TTP > CTP for the B oligomer. Phosphate ions inhibited the binding of [ 3 H]ATP to pertussis toxin in a competitive manner; however, the presence of phosphate ions was essential for binding of ATP to the B oligomer. The toxin substrate, NAD, did not affect the binding of [ 3 H]ATP to pertussis toxin, although the glycoprotein fetuin significantly decreased binding. These results suggest that the binding site for ATP is located on the B oligomer and is distinct from the enzymatically active site but may be located near the eukaryotic receptor binding site

  10. Binding of ATP by pertussis toxin and isolated toxin subunits

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hausman, S.Z.; Manclark, C.R.; Burns, D.L. (Center for Biologics Evaluation and Research, Bethesda, MD (USA))

    1990-07-03

    The binding of ATP to pertussis toxin and its components, the A subunit and B oligomer, was investigated. Whereas, radiolabeled ATP bound to the B oligomer and pertussis toxin, no binding to the A subunit was observed. The binding of ({sup 3}H)ATP to pertussis toxin and the B oligomer was inhibited by nucleotides. The relative effectiveness of the nucleotides was shown to be ATP > GTP > CTP > TTP for pertussis toxin and ATP > GTP > TTP > CTP for the B oligomer. Phosphate ions inhibited the binding of ({sup 3}H)ATP to pertussis toxin in a competitive manner; however, the presence of phosphate ions was essential for binding of ATP to the B oligomer. The toxin substrate, NAD, did not affect the binding of ({sup 3}H)ATP to pertussis toxin, although the glycoprotein fetuin significantly decreased binding. These results suggest that the binding site for ATP is located on the B oligomer and is distinct from the enzymatically active site but may be located near the eukaryotic receptor binding site.

  11. Translational errors in expression of Shiga toxin from pathogenic Escherichia coli as measured by MALDI-TOF-TOF and Orbitrap mass spectrometry

    Science.gov (United States)

    Introduction: Shiga toxin (Stx) is an AB5 toxin expressed by Shiga toxin-producing E. coli (STEC) and Shigella dysenteriae. The Stx holotoxin attaches to surface receptors of eukaryotic cells. After cellular envelopment, the toxin disrupts ribosomal protein synthesis causing cell death. Variations i...

  12. Ab initio structure determination and refinement of a scorpion protein toxin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, G D; Blessing, R H; Ealick, S E; Fontecilla-Camps, J C; Hauptman, H A; Housset, D; Langs, D A; Miller, R

    1997-09-01

    The structure of toxin II from the scorpion Androctonus australis Hector has been determined ab initio by direct methods using SnB at 0.96 A resolution. For the purpose of this structure redetermination, undertaken as a test of the minimal function and the SnB program, the identity and sequence of the protein was withheld from part of the research team. A single solution obtained from 1 619 random atom trials was clearly revealed by the bimodal distribution of the final value of the minimal function associated with each individual trial. Five peptide fragments were identified from a conservative analysis of the initial E-map, and following several refinement cycles with X-PLOR, a model was built of the complete structure. At the end of the X-PLOR refinement, the sequence was compared with the published sequence and 57 of the 64 residues had been correctly identified. Two errors in sequence resulted from side chains with similar size while the rest of the errors were a result of severe disorder or high thermal motion in the side chains. Given the amino-acid sequence, it is estimated that the initial E-map could have produced a model containing 99% of all main-chain and 81% of side-chain atoms. The structure refinement was completed with PROFFT, including the contributions of protein H atoms, and converged at a residual of 0.158 for 30 609 data with F >or= 2sigma(F) in the resolution range 8.0-0.964 A. The final model consisted of 518 non-H protein atoms (36 disordered), 407 H atoms, and 129 water molecules (43 with occupancies less than unity). This total of 647 non-H atoms represents the largest light-atom structure solved to date.

  13. Expression of cholera toxin B–proinsulin fusion protein in lettuce and tobacco chloroplasts – oral administration protects against development of insulitis in non-obese diabetic mice

    OpenAIRE

    Ruhlman, Tracey; Ahangari, Raheleh; Devine, Andrew; Samsam, Mohtahsem; Daniell, Henry

    2007-01-01

    Lettuce and tobacco chloroplast transgenic lines expressing the cholera toxin B subunit–human proinsulin (CTB-Pins) fusion protein were generated. CTB-Pins accumulated up to ~16% of total soluble protein (TSP) in tobacco and up to ~2.5% of TSP in lettuce. Eight milligrams of powdered tobacco leaf material expressing CTB-Pins or, as negative controls, CTB–green fluorescent protein (CTB-GFP) or interferon–GFP (IFN-GFP), or untransformed leaf, were administered orally, each week for 7 weeks, to ...

  14. An Enterotoxin-Like Binary Protein from Pseudomonas protegens with Potent Nematicidal Activity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wei, Jun-Zhi; Siehl, Daniel L; Hou, Zhenglin; Rosen, Barbara; Oral, Jarred; Taylor, Christopher G; Wu, Gusui

    2017-10-01

    Soil microbes are a major food source for free-living soil nematodes. It is known that certain soil bacteria have evolved systems to combat predation. We identified the nematode-antagonistic Pseudomonas protegens strain 15G2 from screening of microbes. Through protein purification we identified a binary protein, designated Pp-ANP, which is responsible for the nematicidal activity. This binary protein inhibits Caenorhabditis elegans growth and development by arresting larvae at the L1 stage and killing older-staged worms. The two subunits, Pp-ANP1a and Pp-ANP2a, are active when reconstituted from separate expression in Escherichia coli The binary toxin also shows strong nematicidal activity against three other free-living nematodes ( Pristionchus pacificus , Panagrellus redivivus , and Acrobeloides sp.), but we did not find any activity against insects and fungi under test conditions, indicating specificity for nematodes. Pp-ANP1a has no significant identity to any known proteins, while Pp-ANP2a shows ∼30% identity to E. coli heat-labile enterotoxin (LT) subunit A and cholera toxin (CT) subunit A. Protein modeling indicates that Pp-ANP2a is structurally similar to CT/LT and likely acts as an ADP-ribosyltransferase. Despite the similarity, Pp-ANP shows several characteristics distinct from CT/LT toxins. Our results indicate that Pp-ANP is a new enterotoxin-like binary toxin with potent and specific activity to nematodes. The potency and specificity of Pp-ANP suggest applications in controlling parasitic nematodes and open an avenue for further research on its mechanism of action and role in bacterium-nematode interaction. IMPORTANCE This study reports the discovery of a new enterotoxin-like binary protein, Pp-ANP, from a Pseudomonas protegens strain. Pp-ANP shows strong nematicidal activity against Caenorhabditis elegans larvae and older-staged worms. It also shows strong activity on other free-living nematodes ( Pristionchus pacificus , Panagrellus redivivus , and

  15. Stabilization of Proteins and Noncovalent Protein Complexes during Electrospray Ionization by Amino Acid Additives.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Hua; Lu, Haiyan; Chingin, Konstantin; Chen, Huanwen

    2015-07-21

    Ionization of proteins and noncovalent protein complexes with minimal disturbance to their native structure presents a great challenge for biological mass spectrometry (MS). In living organisms, the native structure of intracellular proteins is commonly stabilized by solute amino acids (AAs) accumulated in cells at very high concentrations. Inspired by nature, we hypothesized that AAs could also pose a stabilizing effect on the native structure of proteins and noncovalent protein complexes during ionization. To test this hypothesis, here we explored MS response for various protein complexes upon the addition of free AAs at mM concentrations into the electrospray ionization (ESI) solution. Thermal activation of ESI droplets in the MS inlet capillary was employed as a model destabilizing factor during ionization. Our results indicate that certain AAs, in particular proline (Pro), pose considerable positive effect on the stability of noncovalent protein complexes in ESI-MS without affecting the signal intensity of protein ions and original protein-ligand equilibrium, even when added at the 20 mM concentration. The data suggest that the degree of protein stabilization is primarily determined by the osmolytic and ampholytic characteristics of AA solutes. The highest stability and visibility of noncovalent protein complexes in ESI-MS are achieved using AA additives with neutral isoelectric point, moderate proton affinity, and unfavorable interaction with the native protein state. Overall, our results indicate that the simple addition of free amino acids into the working solution can notably improve the stability and accuracy of protein analysis by native ESI-MS.

  16. Predicting protein complexes from weighted protein-protein interaction graphs with a novel unsupervised methodology: Evolutionary enhanced Markov clustering.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Theofilatos, Konstantinos; Pavlopoulou, Niki; Papasavvas, Christoforos; Likothanassis, Spiros; Dimitrakopoulos, Christos; Georgopoulos, Efstratios; Moschopoulos, Charalampos; Mavroudi, Seferina

    2015-03-01

    Proteins are considered to be the most important individual components of biological systems and they combine to form physical protein complexes which are responsible for certain molecular functions. Despite the large availability of protein-protein interaction (PPI) information, not much information is available about protein complexes. Experimental methods are limited in terms of time, efficiency, cost and performance constraints. Existing computational methods have provided encouraging preliminary results, but they phase certain disadvantages as they require parameter tuning, some of them cannot handle weighted PPI data and others do not allow a protein to participate in more than one protein complex. In the present paper, we propose a new fully unsupervised methodology for predicting protein complexes from weighted PPI graphs. The proposed methodology is called evolutionary enhanced Markov clustering (EE-MC) and it is a hybrid combination of an adaptive evolutionary algorithm and a state-of-the-art clustering algorithm named enhanced Markov clustering. EE-MC was compared with state-of-the-art methodologies when applied to datasets from the human and the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae organisms. Using public available datasets, EE-MC outperformed existing methodologies (in some datasets the separation metric was increased by 10-20%). Moreover, when applied to new human datasets its performance was encouraging in the prediction of protein complexes which consist of proteins with high functional similarity. In specific, 5737 protein complexes were predicted and 72.58% of them are enriched for at least one gene ontology (GO) function term. EE-MC is by design able to overcome intrinsic limitations of existing methodologies such as their inability to handle weighted PPI networks, their constraint to assign every protein in exactly one cluster and the difficulties they face concerning the parameter tuning. This fact was experimentally validated and moreover, new

  17. Incipient resistance of Helicoverpa punctigera to the Cry2Ab Bt toxin in Bollgard II cotton.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sharon Downes

    Full Text Available Combinations of dissimilar insecticidal proteins ("pyramids" within transgenic plants are predicted to delay the evolution of pest resistance for significantly longer than crops expressing a single transgene. Field-evolved resistance to Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt transgenic crops has been reported for first generation, single-toxin varieties and the Cry1 class of proteins. Our five year data set shows a significant exponential increase in the frequency of alleles conferring Cry2Ab resistance in Australian field populations of Helicoverpa punctigera since the adoption of a second generation, two-toxin Bt cotton expressing this insecticidal protein. Furthermore, the frequency of cry2Ab resistance alleles in populations from cropping areas is 8-fold higher than that found for populations from non-cropping regions. This report of field evolved resistance to a protein in a dual-toxin Bt-crop has precisely fulfilled the intended function of monitoring for resistance; namely, to provide an early warning of increases in frequencies that may lead to potential failures of the transgenic technology. Furthermore, it demonstrates that pyramids are not 'bullet proof' and that rapid evolution to Bt toxins in the Cry2 class is possible.

  18. Comparison of anorectic potencies of the trichothecenes T-2 toxin, HT-2 toxin and satratoxin G to the ipecac alkaloid emetine

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wenda Wu

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Trichothecene mycotoxins, potent translational inhibitors that are associated with human food poisonings and damp-building illnesses, are of considerable concern to animal and human health. Food refusal is a hallmark of exposure of experimental animals to deoxynivalenol (DON and other Type B trichothecenes but less is known about the anorectic effects of foodborne Type A trichothecenes (e.g., T-2 toxin, HT-2 toxin, airborne Type D trichothecenes (e.g., satratoxin G [SG] or functionally analogous metabolites that impair protein synthesis. Here, we utilized a well-described mouse model of food intake to compare the anorectic potencies of T-2 toxin, HT-2 toxin, and SG to that of emetine, a medicinal alkaloid derived from ipecac that inhibits translation. Intraperitoneal (IP administration with T-2 toxin, HT-2 toxin, emetine and SG evoked anorectic responses that occurred within 0.5 h that lasted up to 96, 96, 3 and 96 h, respectively, with lowest observed adverse effect levels (LOAELs being 0.1, 0.1, 2.5 and 0.25 mg/kg BW, respectively. When delivered via natural routes of exposure, T-2 toxin, HT-2 toxin, emetine (oral and SG (intranasal induced anorectic responses that lasted up to 48, 48, 3 and 6 h, respectively with LOAELs being 0.1, 0.1, 0.25, and 0.5 mg/kg BW, respectively. All four compounds were generally much more potent than DON which was previously observed to have LOAELs of 1 and 2.5 mg/kg BW after IP and oral dosing, respectively. Taken together, these anorectic potency data will be valuable in discerning the relative risks from trichothecenes and other translational inhibitors of natural origin.

  19. Spontaneous variability of pre-dialysis concentrations of uremic toxins over time in stable hemodialysis patients.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sunny Eloot

    Full Text Available Numerous outcome studies and interventional trials in hemodialysis (HD patients are based on uremic toxin concentrations determined at one single or a limited number of time points. The reliability of these studies however entirely depends on how representative these cross-sectional concentrations are. We therefore investigated the variability of predialysis concentrations of uremic toxins over time.Prospectively collected predialysis serum samples of the midweek session of week 0, 1, 2, 3, 4, 8, 12, and 16 were analyzed for a panel of uremic toxins in stable chronic HD patients (N = 18 while maintaining dialyzer type and dialysis mode during the study period.Concentrations of the analyzed uremic toxins varied substantially between individuals, but also within stable HD patients (intra-patient variability. For urea, creatinine, beta-2-microglobulin, and some protein-bound uremic toxins, Intra-class Correlation Coefficient (ICC was higher than 0.7. However, for phosphorus, uric acid, symmetric and asymmetric dimethylarginine, and the protein-bound toxins hippuric acid and indoxyl sulfate, ICC values were below 0.7, implying a concentration variability within the individual patient even exceeding 65% of the observed inter-patient variability.Intra-patient variability may affect the interpretation of the association between a single concentration of certain uremic toxins and outcomes. When performing future outcome and interventional studies with uremic toxins other than described here, one should quantify their intra-patient variability and take into account that for solutes with a large intra-patient variability associations could be missed.

  20. Discovery of Functional Toxin/Antitoxin Systems in Bacteria by Shotgun Cloning

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sberro, Hila; Leavitt, Azita; Kiro, Ruth; Koh, Eugene; Peleg, Yoav; Qimron, Udi; Sorek, Rotem

    2013-04-01

    Toxin-antitoxin (TA) modules, composed of a toxic protein and a counteracting antitoxin, play important roles in bacterial physiology. We examined the experimental insertion of 1.5 million genes from 388 microbial genomes into an Escherichia coli host using over 8.5 million random clones. This revealed hundreds of genes (toxins) that could only be cloned when the neighboring gene (antitoxin) was present on the same clone. Clustering of these genes revealed TA families widespread in bacterial genomes, some of which deviate from the classical characteristics previously described for such modules. Introduction of these genes into E. coli validated that the toxin toxicity is mitigated by the antitoxin. Infection experiments with T7 phage showed that two of the new modules can provide resistance against phage. Moreover, our experiments revealed an 'anti-defense' protein in phage T7 that neutralizes phage resistance. Our results expose active fronts in the arms race between bacteria and phage.

  1. Characterization of known protein complexes using k-connectivity and other topological measures

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gallagher, Suzanne R; Goldberg, Debra S

    2015-01-01

    Many protein complexes are densely packed, so proteins within complexes often interact with several other proteins in the complex. Steric constraints prevent most proteins from simultaneously binding more than a handful of other proteins, regardless of the number of proteins in the complex. Because of this, as complex size increases, several measures of the complex decrease within protein-protein interaction networks. However, k-connectivity, the number of vertices or edges that need to be removed in order to disconnect a graph, may be consistently high for protein complexes. The property of k-connectivity has been little used previously in the investigation of protein-protein interactions. To understand the discriminative power of k-connectivity and other topological measures for identifying unknown protein complexes, we characterized these properties in known Saccharomyces cerevisiae protein complexes in networks generated both from highly accurate X-ray crystallography experiments which give an accurate model of each complex, and also as the complexes appear in high-throughput yeast 2-hybrid studies in which new complexes may be discovered. We also computed these properties for appropriate random subgraphs.We found that clustering coefficient, mutual clustering coefficient, and k-connectivity are better indicators of known protein complexes than edge density, degree, or betweenness. This suggests new directions for future protein complex-finding algorithms. PMID:26913183

  2. Does Low-Protein Diet Influence the Uremic Toxin Serum Levels From the Gut Microbiota in Nondialysis Chronic Kidney Disease Patients?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Black, Ana Paula; Anjos, Juliana S; Cardozo, Ludmila; Carmo, Flávia L; Dolenga, Carla J; Nakao, Lia S; de Carvalho Ferreira, Dennis; Rosado, Alexandre; Carraro Eduardo, José Carlos; Mafra, Denise

    2018-05-01

    To evaluate the effects of low-protein diet (LPD) on uremic toxins and the gut microbiota profile in nondialysis chronic kidney disease (CKD) patients. Longitudinal study with 30 nondialysis CKD patients (stage 3-4) undergoing LPD for 6 months. Adherence to the diet was evaluated based on the calculation of protein equivalent of nitrogen appearance from the 24-hour urine analysis. Good adherence to LPD was considered when protein intake was from 90% to 110% of the prescribed amount (0.6 g/kg/day). Food intake was analyzed by the 24-hour recall method. The anthropometric, biochemical and lipid profile parameters were measured according to standard methods. Uremic toxin serum levels (indoxyl sulfate, p-cresyl sulfate, indole-3-acetic acid) were obtained by reversed-phase high-performance liquid chromatography (RP-HPLC). Fecal samples were collected to evaluate the gut microbiota profile through polymerase chain reaction and denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis. Statistical analysis was performed by the SPSS 23.0 program software. Patients who adhered to the diet (n = 14) (0.7 ± 0.2 g/kg/day) presented an improvement in renal function (nonsignificant) and reduction in total and low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (183.9 ± 48.5-155.7 ± 37.2 mg/dL, P = .01; 99.4 ± 41.3-76.4 ± 33.2 mg/dL, P = .01, respectively). After 6 months of nutricional intervention, p-cresyl sulfate serum levels were reduced significantly in patients who adhered to the LPD (19.3 [9.6-24.7] to 15.5 [9.8-24.1] mg/L, P = .03), and in contrast, the levels were increased in patients who did not adhere (13.9 [8.0-24.8] to 24.3 [8.1-39.2] mg/L, P = .004). In addition, using the denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis technique, it was observed change in the intestinal microbiota profile after LPD intervention in both groups, and the number of bands was positively associated with protein intake (r = 0.44, P = .04). LPD seems be a good strategy to reduce the uremic

  3. Comprehensive inventory of protein complexes in the Protein Data Bank from consistent classification of interfaces

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gorin Andrey A

    2008-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Protein-protein interactions are ubiquitous and essential for all cellular processes. High-resolution X-ray crystallographic structures of protein complexes can reveal the details of their function and provide a basis for many computational and experimental approaches. Differentiation between biological and non-biological contacts and reconstruction of the intact complex is a challenging computational problem. A successful solution can provide additional insights into the fundamental principles of biological recognition and reduce errors in many algorithms and databases utilizing interaction information extracted from the Protein Data Bank (PDB. Results We have developed a method for identifying protein complexes in the PDB X-ray structures by a four step procedure: (1 comprehensively collecting all protein-protein interfaces; (2 clustering similar protein-protein interfaces together; (3 estimating the probability that each cluster is relevant based on a diverse set of properties; and (4 combining these scores for each PDB entry in order to predict the complex structure. The resulting clusters of biologically relevant interfaces provide a reliable catalog of evolutionary conserved protein-protein interactions. These interfaces, as well as the predicted protein complexes, are available from the Protein Interface Server (PInS website (see Availability and requirements section. Conclusion Our method demonstrates an almost two-fold reduction of the annotation error rate as evaluated on a large benchmark set of complexes validated from the literature. We also estimate relative contributions of each interface property to the accurate discrimination of biologically relevant interfaces and discuss possible directions for further improving the prediction method.

  4. Selenium deficiency aggravates T-2 toxin-induced injury of primary neonatal rat cardiomyocytes through ER stress.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xu, Jing; Pan, Shengchi; Gan, Fang; Hao, Shu; Liu, Dandan; Xu, Haibin; Huang, Kehe

    2018-04-01

    Keshan disease is a potentially fatal cardiomyopathy in humans. Selenium deficiency, T-2 toxin, and myocarditis virus are thought to be the major factors contributing to Keshan disease. But the relationship among these three factors is poorly described. This study aims to explore whether selenium deficiency aggravates T-2 toxin-induced cardiomyocyte injury and its underlying mechanism. Cardiomyocytes were isolated from neonatal rat and cultured at the physiological (2.0 μM) or lower concentrations of selenium with different concentrations of T-2 toxin. Our results showed that selenium deficiencies aggravated T-2 toxin-induced cardiomyocyte injury in a concentration-dependent manner as demonstrated by MTT bioassay, LDH activity, reactive oxygen species levels and caspase 3 protein expressions. T-2 toxin treatment significantly increased mRNA expressions for stress proteins GRP78 and CHOP in cardiomyocytes compared with the control. Selenium deficiencies further promoted GRP78, CHOP and p-eIF2α expressions. Knockdown of CHOP by the specific small interfering RNA eliminated the effect of selenium deficiencies on T-2 toxin-induced injury. It could be concluded that selenium deficiency aggravates T-2 toxin-induced cardiomyocyte injury through initiating more aggressive endoplasmic reticulum stress. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  5. Binding modes and functional surface of anti-mammalian scorpion α-toxins to sodium channels.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Rong; Chung, Shin-Ho

    2012-10-02

    Scorpion α-toxins bind to the voltage-sensing domains of voltage-gated sodium (Na(V)) channels and interfere with the inactivation mechanisms. The functional surface of α-toxins has been shown to contain an NC-domain consisting of the five-residue turn (positions 8-12) and the C-terminus (positions 56-64) and a core-domain centered on the residue 18. The NC- and core-domains are interconnected by the linker-domain (positions 8-18). Here with atomistic molecular dynamics simulations, we examine the binding modes between two α-toxins, the anti-mammalian AahII and the anti-insect LqhαIT, and the voltage-sensing domain of rat Na(V)1.2, a subtype of Na(V) channels expressed in nerve cells. Both toxins are docked to the extracellular side of the voltage-sensing domain of Na(V)1.2 using molecular dynamics simulations, with the linker-domain assumed to wedge into the binding pocket. Several salt bridges and hydrophobic clusters are observed to form between the NC- and core-domains of the toxins and Na(V)1.2 and stabilize the toxin-channel complexes. The binding modes predicted are consistent with available mutagenesis data and can readily explain the relative affinities of AahII and LqhαIT for Na(V)1.2. The dissociation constants for the two toxin-channel complexes are derived, which compare favorably with experiment. Our models demonstrate that the functional surface of anti-mammalian scorpion α-toxins is centered on the linker-domain, similar to that of β-toxins.

  6. Failure of botulinum toxin injection for neurogenic detrusor overactivity: Switch of toxin versus second injection of the same toxin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peyronnet, Benoit; Castel-Lacanal, Evelyne; Manunta, Andréa; Roumiguié, Mathieu; Marque, Philippe; Rischmann, Pascal; Gamé, Xavier

    2015-12-01

    To evaluate the efficacy of a second injection of the same toxin versus switching to a different botulinum toxin A after failure of a first detrusor injection in patients with neurogenic detrusor overactivity. The charts of all patients who underwent detrusor injections of botulinum toxin A (either abobotulinumtoxinA or onabotulinumtoxinA) for the management of neurogenic detrusor overactivity at a single institution were retrospectively reviewed. Patients in whom a first detrusor injection had failed were included in the present study. They were managed by a second injection of the same toxin at the same dosage or by a new detrusor injection using a different botulinum toxin A. Success was defined as a resolution of urgency, urinary incontinence and detrusor overactivity in a patient self-catheterizing seven times or less per 24 h. A total of 58 patients were included for analysis. A toxin switch was carried out in 29 patients, whereas the other 29 patients received a reinjection of the same toxin at the same dose. The success rate was higher in patients who received a toxin switch (51.7% vs. 24.1%, P = 0.03). Patients treated with a switch from abobotulinumtoxinA to onabotulinumtoxinA and those treated with a switch from onabotulinumtoxinA to abobotulinumtoxinA had similar success rates (52.9% vs. 50%, P = 0.88). After failure of a first detrusor injection of botulinum toxin for neurogenic detrusor overactivity, a switch to a different toxin seems to be more effective than a second injection of the same toxin. The replacement of onabotulinumtoxin by abobotulinumtoxin or the reverse provides similar results. © 2015 The Japanese Urological Association.

  7. Nicotine affects protein complex rearrangement in Caenorhabditis elegans cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sobkowiak, Robert; Zielezinski, Andrzej; Karlowski, Wojciech M; Lesicki, Andrzej

    2017-10-01

    Nicotine may affect cell function by rearranging protein complexes. We aimed to determine nicotine-induced alterations of protein complexes in Caenorhabditis elegans (C. elegans) cells, thereby revealing links between nicotine exposure and protein complex modulation. We compared the proteomic alterations induced by low and high nicotine concentrations (0.01 mM and 1 mM) with the control (no nicotine) in vivo by using mass spectrometry (MS)-based techniques, specifically the cetyltrimethylammonium bromide (CTAB) discontinuous gel electrophoresis coupled with liquid chromatography (LC)-MS/MS and spectral counting. As a result, we identified dozens of C. elegans proteins that are present exclusively or in higher abundance in either nicotine-treated or untreated worms. Based on these results, we report a possible network that captures the key protein components of nicotine-induced protein complexes and speculate how the different protein modules relate to their distinct physiological roles. Using functional annotation of detected proteins, we hypothesize that the identified complexes can modulate the energy metabolism and level of oxidative stress. These proteins can also be involved in modulation of gene expression and may be crucial in Alzheimer's disease. The findings reported in our study reveal putative intracellular interactions of many proteins with the cytoskeleton and may contribute to the understanding of the mechanisms of nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) signaling and trafficking in cells.

  8. Cellular vacuoles induced by Mycoplasma pneumoniae CARDS toxin originate from Rab9-associated compartments.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Coreen Johnson

    Full Text Available Recently, we identified an ADP-ribosylating and vacuolating cytotoxin in Mycoplasma pneumoniae designated Community Acquired Respiratory Distress Syndrome (CARDS toxin. In this study we show that vacuoles induced by recombinant CARDS (rCARDS toxin are acidic and derive from the endocytic pathway as determined by the uptake of neutral red and the fluid-phase marker, Lucifer yellow, respectively. Also, we demonstrate that the formation of rCARDS toxin-associated cytoplasmic vacuoles is inhibited by the vacuolar ATPase inhibitor, bafilomycin A1, and the ionophore, monensin. To examine the ontogeny of these vacuoles, we analyzed the distribution of endosomal and lysosomal membrane markers during vacuole formation and observed the enrichment of the late endosomal GTPase, Rab9, around rCARDS toxin-induced vacuoles. Immunogold-labeled Rab9 and overexpression of green fluorescent-tagged Rab9 further confirmed vacuolar association. The late endosomal- and lysosomal-associated membrane proteins, LAMP1 and LAMP2, also localized to the vacuolar membranes, while the late endosomal protein, Rab7, and early endosomal markers, Rab5 and EEA1, were excluded. HeLa cells expressing dominant-negative (DN Rab9 exhibited markedly reduced vacuole formation in the presence of rCARDS toxin, in contrast to cells expressing DN-Rab7, highlighting the importance of Rab9 function in rCARDS toxin-induced vacuolation. Our findings reveal the unique Rab9-association with rCARDS toxin-induced vacuoles and its possible relationship to the characteristic histopathology that accompanies M. pneumoniae infection.

  9. Clostridium difficile toxin CDT induces formation of microtubule-based protrusions and increases adherence of bacteria.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carsten Schwan

    2009-10-01

    Full Text Available Clostridium difficile causes antibiotic-associated diarrhea and pseudomembranous colitis by production of the Rho GTPase-glucosylating toxins A and B. Recently emerging hypervirulent Clostridium difficile strains additionally produce the binary ADP-ribosyltransferase toxin CDT (Clostridium difficile transferase, which ADP-ribosylates actin and inhibits actin polymerization. Thus far, the role of CDT as a virulence factor is not understood. Here we report by using time-lapse- and immunofluorescence microscopy that CDT and other binary actin-ADP-ribosylating toxins, including Clostridium botulinum C2 toxin and Clostridium perfringens iota toxin, induce redistribution of microtubules and formation of long (up to >150 microm microtubule-based protrusions at the surface of intestinal epithelial cells. The toxins increase the length of decoration of microtubule plus-ends by EB1/3, CLIP-170 and CLIP-115 proteins and cause redistribution of the capture proteins CLASP2 and ACF7 from microtubules at the cell cortex into the cell interior. The CDT-induced microtubule protrusions form a dense meshwork at the cell surface, which wrap and embed bacterial cells, thereby largely increasing the adherence of Clostridia. The study describes a novel type of microtubule structure caused by less efficient microtubule capture and offers a new perspective for the pathogenetic role of CDT and other binary actin-ADP-ribosylating toxins in host-pathogen interactions.

  10. Insect Resistance to Bacillus thuringiensis Toxin Cry2Ab Is Conferred by Mutations in an ABC Transporter Subfamily A Protein.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wee Tek Tay

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available The use of conventional chemical insecticides and bacterial toxins to control lepidopteran pests of global agriculture has imposed significant selection pressure leading to the rapid evolution of insecticide resistance. Transgenic crops (e.g., cotton expressing the Bt Cry toxins are now used world wide to control these pests, including the highly polyphagous and invasive cotton bollworm Helicoverpa armigera. Since 2004, the Cry2Ab toxin has become widely used for controlling H. armigera, often used in combination with Cry1Ac to delay resistance evolution. Isolation of H. armigera and H. punctigera individuals heterozygous for Cry2Ab resistance in 2002 and 2004, respectively, allowed aspects of Cry2Ab resistance (level, fitness costs, genetic dominance, complementation tests to be characterised in both species. However, the gene identity and genetic changes conferring this resistance were unknown, as was the detailed Cry2Ab mode of action. No cross-resistance to Cry1Ac was observed in mutant lines. Biphasic linkage analysis of a Cry2Ab-resistant H. armigera family followed by exon-primed intron-crossing (EPIC marker mapping and candidate gene sequencing identified three independent resistance-associated INDEL mutations in an ATP-Binding Cassette (ABC transporter gene we named HaABCA2. A deletion mutation was also identified in the H. punctigera homolog from the resistant line. All mutations truncate the ABCA2 protein. Isolation of further Cry2Ab resistance alleles in the same gene from field H. armigera populations indicates unequal resistance allele frequencies and the potential for Bt resistance evolution. Identification of the gene involved in resistance as an ABC transporter of the A subfamily adds to the body of evidence on the crucial role this gene family plays in the mode of action of the Bt Cry toxins. The structural differences between the ABCA2, and that of the C subfamily required for Cry1Ac toxicity, indicate differences in the

  11. Adaptation of Clostridium difficile toxin A for use as a protein translocation system

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kern, Stephanie M. [Department of Chemistry, Wayne State University, 5101 Cass Ave, Detroit, MI 48202 (United States); Feig, Andrew L., E-mail: afeig@chem.wayne.edu [Department of Chemistry, Wayne State University, 5101 Cass Ave, Detroit, MI 48202 (United States)

    2011-02-25

    Research highlights: {yields} Catalytic domain of TcdA was replaced by a luciferase reporter. {yields} Each functional domain retains activity in the context of the fusion protein. {yields} We provide evidence that reporter proteins are delivered into vero cells. {yields} System releases cargo into the cytosol, providing a powerful new biotechnology tool. -- Abstract: A cellular delivery system is a useful biotechnology tool, with many possible applications. Two derivatives of Clostridium difficile toxin A (TcdA) have been constructed (GFP-TcdA and Luc-TcdA), by fusing reporter genes to functional domains of TcdA, and evaluated for their ability to translocate their cargo into mammalian cells. The cysteine protease and receptor binding domains of TcdA have been examined and found to be functional when expressed in the chimeric construct. Whereas GFP failed to internalize in the context of the TcdA fusion, significant cellular luciferase activity was detected in vero cell lysates after treatment with Luc-TcdA. Treatment with bafilomycin A1, which inhibits endosomal acidification, traps the luciferase activity within endosomes. To further understand these results, clarified lysates were subjected to molecular weight sieving, demonstrating that active luciferase was released from Luc-TcdA after translocation and internal processing.

  12. Adaptation of Clostridium difficile toxin A for use as a protein translocation system

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kern, Stephanie M.; Feig, Andrew L.

    2011-01-01

    Research highlights: → Catalytic domain of TcdA was replaced by a luciferase reporter. → Each functional domain retains activity in the context of the fusion protein. → We provide evidence that reporter proteins are delivered into vero cells. → System releases cargo into the cytosol, providing a powerful new biotechnology tool. -- Abstract: A cellular delivery system is a useful biotechnology tool, with many possible applications. Two derivatives of Clostridium difficile toxin A (TcdA) have been constructed (GFP-TcdA and Luc-TcdA), by fusing reporter genes to functional domains of TcdA, and evaluated for their ability to translocate their cargo into mammalian cells. The cysteine protease and receptor binding domains of TcdA have been examined and found to be functional when expressed in the chimeric construct. Whereas GFP failed to internalize in the context of the TcdA fusion, significant cellular luciferase activity was detected in vero cell lysates after treatment with Luc-TcdA. Treatment with bafilomycin A1, which inhibits endosomal acidification, traps the luciferase activity within endosomes. To further understand these results, clarified lysates were subjected to molecular weight sieving, demonstrating that active luciferase was released from Luc-TcdA after translocation and internal processing.

  13. Distribution of radium and chemical toxins in the environment of a uranium complex

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Markose, P.M.; Eapen, K.P.; Venkataraman, S.; Kamath, P.R.

    1978-01-01

    The discharge of waste effluents from mining and milling of uranium ore brings into the aquatic environment radioactive pollutants and chemical toxins. The radioactive element of primary concern is radium and the nonactive pollutants are manganese, chlorides, sulphates and water hardness. In the Uranium Complex, Bihar (India), the low grade ore is mined and processed for recovery of uranium. The waste slurries from the process are neutralised and discharged into the tailings pond(TP) where the solids settle and the effluents flow out into a natural stream, Jurianala. The TP effluent mixes with mine water and floor washings from the mill in the canal on its down stream course to the river, R. Subarnarekha. This study was conducted to assess the total pollution from the liquid discharges in the environment and the impact of discharge on water quality. The results of the study of movement of pollutants in the biosphere and laboratory investigations on containment are presented. (author)

  14. Endoplasmic Reticulum-Targeted Subunit Toxins Provide a New Approach to Rescue Misfolded Mutant Proteins and Revert Cell Models of Genetic Diseases

    OpenAIRE

    Adnan, Humaira; Zhang, Zhenbo; Park, Hyun-Joo; Tailor, Chetankumar; Che, Clare; Kamani, Mustafa; Spitalny, George; Binnington, Beth; Lingwood, Clifford

    2016-01-01

    Many germ line diseases stem from a relatively minor disturbance in mutant protein endoplasmic reticulum (ER) 3D assembly. Chaperones are recruited which, on failure to correct folding, sort the mutant for retrotranslocation and cytosolic proteasomal degradation (ER-associated degradation-ERAD), to initiate/exacerbate deficiency-disease symptoms. Several bacterial (and plant) subunit toxins, retrograde transport to the ER after initial cell surface receptor binding/internalization. The A subu...

  15. Improved understanding of protein complex offers insight into DNA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Summer Science Writing Internship Improved understanding of protein complex offers insight into DNA clearer understanding of the origin recognition complex (ORC) - a protein complex that directs DNA replication - through its crystal structure offers new insight into fundamental mechanisms of DNA replication

  16. Expression of recombinant Clostridium difficile toxin A and B in Bacillus megaterium

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nie Weijia

    2008-11-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Major Clostridium difficile virulence factors are the exotoxins TcdA and TcdB. Due to the large size and poor stability of the proteins, the active recombinant TcdA and TcdB have been difficult to produce. Results The toxin genes tcdA and tcdB were amplified by PCR using chromosomal DNA from a toxigenic strain as a template, and cloned into a shuttle vector pHis1522. The sequences of both tcdA and tcdB genes in the vector have been verified by DNA sequencing. The constructs were transformed into B. megaterium protoplasts and the protein expression was controlled under a xylose promoter. The recombinant toxins (rTcdA and rTcdB were purified from bacterial crude extracts. Approximately 5 – 10 mg of highly purified recombinant toxins were obtained from one liter of bacterial culture. The resulting rTcdA and rTcdB had similar molecular masses to the native toxins, and their biological activities were found to be similar to their native counterparts after an extensive examination. Conclusion We have generated the full length and active recombinant TcdA and TcdB in Bacillus megaterium.

  17. Dynamics in electron transfer protein complexes

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bashir, Qamar

    2010-01-01

    Recent studies have provided experimental evidence for the existence of an encounter complex, a transient intermediate in the formation of protein complexes. We have used paramagnetic relaxation enhancement NMR spectroscopy in combination with Monte Carlo simulations to characterize and visualize

  18. An overview of the safety and biological effects of Bacillus thuringiensis Cry toxins in mammals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rubio-Infante, Néstor; Moreno-Fierros, Leticia

    2016-05-01

    Crystal proteins (Cry) produced during the growth and sporulation phases of Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt) bacterium are known as delta endotoxins. These toxins are being used worldwide as bioinsecticides to control pests in agriculture, and some Cry toxins are used against mosquitoes to control vector transmission. This review summarizes the relevant information currently available regarding the biosafety and biological effects that Bt and its insecticidal Cry proteins elicit in mammals. This work was performed because of concerns regarding the possible health impact of Cry toxins on vertebrates, particularly because Bt toxins might be associated with immune-activating or allergic responses. The controversial data published to date are discussed in this review considering earlier toxicological studies of B. thuringiensis, spores, toxins and Bt crops. We discussed the experimental studies performed in humans, mice, rats and sheep as well as in diverse mammalian cell lines. Although the term 'toxic' is not appropriate for defining the effects these toxins have on mammals, they cannot be considered innocuous, as they have some physiological effects that may become pathological; thus, trials that are more comprehensive are necessary to determine their effects on mammals because knowledge in this field remains limited. Copyright © 2015 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

  19. Consensus panel's assessment and recommendations on the use of 3 botulinum toxin type A products in facial aesthetics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lorenc, Z Paul; Kenkel, Jeffrey M; Fagien, Steven; Hirmand, Haideh; Nestor, Mark S; Sclafani, Anthony P; Sykes, Jonathan M; Waldorf, Heidi A

    2013-03-01

    In this summary article, the authors discuss the characteristics of abobotulinumtoxinA, incobotulinumtoxinA, and onabotulinumtoxinA. With 3 neuromodulators available in the US market, comparisons between and among products will invariably be made, so arguments for the most effective facial aesthetic uses of each neuromodulator are presented. Topics addressed in this article include patient expectations, toxin reconstitution and preparation, patient positioning, differences among products, the role of complexing proteins, and dosing and injection strategies. Recommendations are also provided by treatment area.

  20. Targeting Staphylococcus aureus Toxins: A Potential form of Anti-Virulence Therapy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cin Kong

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available Staphylococcus aureus is an opportunistic pathogen and the leading cause of a wide range of severe clinical infections. The range of diseases reflects the diversity of virulence factors produced by this pathogen. To establish an infection in the host, S. aureus expresses an inclusive set of virulence factors such as toxins, enzymes, adhesins, and other surface proteins that allow the pathogen to survive under extreme conditions and are essential for the bacteria’s ability to spread through tissues. Expression and secretion of this array of toxins and enzymes are tightly controlled by a number of regulatory systems. S. aureus is also notorious for its ability to resist the arsenal of currently available antibiotics and dissemination of various multidrug-resistant S. aureus clones limits therapeutic options for a S. aureus infection. Recently, the development of anti-virulence therapeutics that neutralize S. aureus toxins or block the pathways that regulate toxin production has shown potential in thwarting the bacteria’s acquisition of antibiotic resistance. In this review, we provide insights into the regulation of S. aureus toxin production and potential anti-virulence strategies that target S. aureus toxins.

  1. Proteome response of Tribolium castaneum larvae to Bacillus thuringiensis toxin producing strains.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Estefanía Contreras

    Full Text Available Susceptibility of Tribolium castaneum (Tc larvae was determined against spore-crystal mixtures of five coleopteran specific and one lepidopteran specific Bacillus thuringiensis Cry toxin producing strains and those containing the structurally unrelated Cry3Ba and Cry23Aa/Cry37Aa proteins were found toxic (LC(50 values 13.53 and 6.30 µg spore-crystal mixture/µL flour disc, respectively. Using iTRAQ combined with LC-MS/MS allowed the discovery of seven novel differentially expressed proteins in early response of Tc larvae to the two active spore-crystal mixtures. Proteins showing a statistically significant change in treated larvae compared to non-intoxicated larvae fell into two major categories; up-regulated proteins were involved in host defense (odorant binding protein C12, apolipophorin-III and chemosensory protein 18 and down-regulated proteins were linked to metabolic pathways affecting larval metabolism and development (pyruvate dehydrogenase Eα subunit, cuticular protein, ribosomal protein L13a and apolipoprotein LI-II. Among increased proteins, Odorant binding protein C12 showed the highest change, 4-fold increase in both toxin treatments. The protein displayed amino acid sequence and structural homology to Tenebrio molitor 12 kDa hemolymph protein b precursor, a non-olfactory odorant binding protein. Analysis of mRNA expression and mortality assays in Odorant binding protein C12 silenced larvae were consistent with a general immune defense function of non-olfactory odorant binding proteins. Regarding down-regulated proteins, at the transcriptional level, pyruvate dehydrogenase and cuticular genes were decreased in Tc larvae exposed to the Cry3Ba producing strain compared to the Cry23Aa/Cry37Aa producing strain, which may contribute to the developmental arrest that we observed with larvae fed the Cry3Ba producing strain. Results demonstrated a distinct host transcriptional regulation depending upon the Cry toxin treatment. Knowledge

  2. Toxic and nontoxic components of botulinum neurotoxin complex are evolved from a common ancestral zinc protein

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Inui, Ken [Department of Food and Cosmetic Science, Faculty of Bioindustry, Tokyo University of Agriculture, 196 Yasaka, Abashiri 099-2493 (Japan); Japan Society for the Promotion of Science, 1-8 Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo 102-8472 (Japan); Sagane, Yoshimasa [Department of Food and Cosmetic Science, Faculty of Bioindustry, Tokyo University of Agriculture, 196 Yasaka, Abashiri 099-2493 (Japan); Miyata, Keita [Department of Food and Cosmetic Science, Faculty of Bioindustry, Tokyo University of Agriculture, 196 Yasaka, Abashiri 099-2493 (Japan); Japan Society for the Promotion of Science, 1-8 Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo 102-8472 (Japan); Miyashita, Shin-Ichiro [Department of Food and Cosmetic Science, Faculty of Bioindustry, Tokyo University of Agriculture, 196 Yasaka, Abashiri 099-2493 (Japan); Suzuki, Tomonori [Department of Bacteriology, Okayama University Graduate School of Medicine, Dentistry and Pharmaceutical Sciences, 2-5-1 Shikata-cho, Kita-ku, Okayama 700-8558 (Japan); Shikamori, Yasuyuki [Agilent Technologies International Japan, Ltd. Takaura-cho 9-1, Hachioji-shi, Tokyo 192-0033 (Japan); Ohyama, Tohru; Niwa, Koichi [Department of Food and Cosmetic Science, Faculty of Bioindustry, Tokyo University of Agriculture, 196 Yasaka, Abashiri 099-2493 (Japan); Watanabe, Toshihiro, E-mail: t-watana@bioindustry.nodai.ac.jp [Department of Food and Cosmetic Science, Faculty of Bioindustry, Tokyo University of Agriculture, 196 Yasaka, Abashiri 099-2493 (Japan)

    2012-03-16

    Highlights: Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer BoNT and NTNHA proteins share a similar protein architecture. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer NTNHA and BoNT were both identified as zinc-binding proteins. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer NTNHA does not have a classical HEXXH zinc-coordinating motif similar to that found in all serotypes of BoNT. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Homology modeling implied probable key residues involved in zinc coordination. -- Abstract: Zinc atoms play an essential role in a number of enzymes. Botulinum neurotoxin (BoNT), the most potent toxin known in nature, is a zinc-dependent endopeptidase. Here we identify the nontoxic nonhemagglutinin (NTNHA), one of the BoNT-complex constituents, as a zinc-binding protein, along with BoNT. A protein structure classification database search indicated that BoNT and NTNHA share a similar domain architecture, comprising a zinc-dependent metalloproteinase-like, BoNT coiled-coil motif and concanavalin A-like domains. Inductively coupled plasma-mass spectrometry analysis demonstrated that every single NTNHA molecule contains a single zinc atom. This is the first demonstration of a zinc atom in this protein, as far as we know. However, the NTNHA molecule does not possess any known zinc-coordinating motif, whereas all BoNT serotypes possess the classical HEXXH motif. Homology modeling of the NTNHA structure implied that a consensus K-C-L-I-K-X{sub 35}-D sequence common among all NTNHA serotype molecules appears to coordinate a single zinc atom. These findings lead us to propose that NTNHA and BoNT may have evolved distinct functional specializations following their branching out from a common ancestral zinc protein.

  3. Long-Term Effects of Botulinum Toxin Complex Type A Injection on Mechano- and Metabo-Sensitive Afferent Fibers Originating from Gastrocnemius Muscle.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Guillaume Caron

    Full Text Available The aim of the present study was to investigate long term effects of motor denervation by botulinum toxin complex type A (BoNT/A from Clostridium Botulinum, on the afferent fibers originating from the gastrocnemius muscle of rats. Animals were divided in 2 experimental groups: 1 untreated animals acting as control and 2 treated animals in which the toxin was injected in the left muscle, the latter being itself divided into 3 subgroups according to their locomotor recovery with the help of a test based on footprint measurements of walking rats: i no recovery (B0, ii 50% recovery (B50 and iii full recovery (B100. Then, muscle properties, metabosensitive afferent fiber responses to potassium chloride (KCl and lactic acid injections and Electrically-Induced Fatigue (EIF, and mechanosensitive responses to tendon vibrations were measured. At the end of the experiment, rats were killed and the toxin injected muscles were weighted. After toxin injection, we observed a complete paralysis associated to a loss of force to muscle stimulation and a significant muscle atrophy, and a return to baseline when the animals recover. The response to fatigue was only decreased in the B0 group. The responses to KCl injections were only altered in the B100 groups while responses to lactic acid were altered in the 3 injected groups. Finally, our results indicated that neurotoxin altered the biphasic pattern of response of the mechanosensitive fiber to tendon vibrations in the B0 and B50 groups. These results indicated that neurotoxin injection induces muscle afferent activity alterations that persist and even worsen when the muscle has recovered his motor activity.

  4. Long-Term Effects of Botulinum Toxin Complex Type A Injection on Mechano- and Metabo-Sensitive Afferent Fibers Originating from Gastrocnemius Muscle.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Caron, Guillaume; Marqueste, Tanguy; Decherchi, Patrick

    2015-01-01

    The aim of the present study was to investigate long term effects of motor denervation by botulinum toxin complex type A (BoNT/A) from Clostridium Botulinum, on the afferent fibers originating from the gastrocnemius muscle of rats. Animals were divided in 2 experimental groups: 1) untreated animals acting as control and 2) treated animals in which the toxin was injected in the left muscle, the latter being itself divided into 3 subgroups according to their locomotor recovery with the help of a test based on footprint measurements of walking rats: i) no recovery (B0), ii) 50% recovery (B50) and iii) full recovery (B100). Then, muscle properties, metabosensitive afferent fiber responses to potassium chloride (KCl) and lactic acid injections and Electrically-Induced Fatigue (EIF), and mechanosensitive responses to tendon vibrations were measured. At the end of the experiment, rats were killed and the toxin injected muscles were weighted. After toxin injection, we observed a complete paralysis associated to a loss of force to muscle stimulation and a significant muscle atrophy, and a return to baseline when the animals recover. The response to fatigue was only decreased in the B0 group. The responses to KCl injections were only altered in the B100 groups while responses to lactic acid were altered in the 3 injected groups. Finally, our results indicated that neurotoxin altered the biphasic pattern of response of the mechanosensitive fiber to tendon vibrations in the B0 and B50 groups. These results indicated that neurotoxin injection induces muscle afferent activity alterations that persist and even worsen when the muscle has recovered his motor activity.

  5. Effects of Animal Venoms and Toxins on Hallmarks of Cancer

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chaisakul, Janeyuth; Hodgson, Wayne C.; Kuruppu, Sanjaya; Prasongsook, Naiyarat

    2016-01-01

    Animal venoms are a cocktail of proteins and peptides, targeting vital physiological processes. Venoms have evolved to assist in the capture and digestion of prey. Key venom components often include neurotoxins, myotoxins, cardiotoxins, hematoxins and catalytic enzymes. The pharmacological activities of venom components have been investigated as a source of potential therapeutic agents. Interestingly, a number of animal toxins display profound anticancer effects. These include toxins purified from snake, bee and scorpion venoms effecting cancer cell proliferation, migration, invasion, apoptotic activity and neovascularization. Indeed, the mechanism behind the anticancer effect of certain toxins is similar to that of agents currently used in chemotherapy. For example, Lebein is a snake venom disintegrin which generates anti-angiogenic effects by inhibiting vascular endothelial growth factors (VEGF). In this review article, we highlight the biological activities of animal toxins on the multiple steps of tumour formation or hallmarks of cancer. We also discuss recent progress in the discovery of lead compounds for anticancer drug development from venom components. PMID:27471574

  6. A Combinational Strategy upon RNA Sequencing and Peptidomics Unravels a Set of Novel Toxin Peptides in Scorpion Mesobuthus martensii

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ning Luan

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available Scorpion venom is deemed to contain many toxic peptides as an important source of natural compounds. Out of the two hundred proteins identified in Mesobuthus martensii (M. martensii, only a few peptide toxins have been found so far. Herein, a combinational approach based upon RNA sequencing and Liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry/mass spectrometry (LC MS/MS was employed to explore the venom peptides in M. martensii. A total of 153 proteins were identified from the scorpion venom, 26 previously known and 127 newly identified. Of the novel toxins, 97 proteins exhibited sequence similarities to known toxins, and 30 were never reported. Combining peptidomic and transcriptomic analyses, the peptide sequence of BmKKx1 was reannotated and four disulfide bridges were confirmed within it. In light of the comparison of conservation and variety of toxin amino acid sequences, highly conserved and variable regions were perceived in 24 toxins that were parts of two sodium channel and two potassium channel toxins families. Taking all of this evidences together, the peptidomic analysis on M. martensii indeed identified numerous novel scorpion peptides, expanded our knowledge towards the venom diversity, and afforded a set of pharmaceutical candidates.

  7. Protein complex finding and ranking: An application to Alzheimer's

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Protein complexes are known to play a major role in controlling cellular activity in a living being. Identifying complexesfrom raw protein–protein interactions (PPIs) is an important area of research. Earlier work has been limited mostly to yeastand a few other model organisms. Such protein complex identification methods, ...

  8. Novel animal defenses against predation: a snail egg neurotoxin combining lectin and pore-forming chains that resembles plant defense and bacteria attack toxins.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marcos Sebastián Dreon

    Full Text Available Although most eggs are intensely predated, the aerial egg clutches from the aquatic snail Pomacea canaliculata have only one reported predator due to unparalleled biochemical defenses. These include two storage-proteins: ovorubin that provides a conspicuous (presumably warning coloration and has antinutritive and antidigestive properties, and PcPV2 a neurotoxin with lethal effect on rodents. We sequenced PcPV2 and studied whether it was able to withstand the gastrointestinal environment and reach circulation of a potential predator. Capacity to resist digestion was assayed using small-angle X-ray scattering (SAXS, fluorescence spectroscopy and simulated gastrointestinal proteolysis. PcPV2 oligomer is antinutritive, withstanding proteinase digestion and displaying structural stability between pH 4.0-10.0. cDNA sequencing and protein domain search showed that its two subunits share homology with membrane attack complex/perforin (MACPF-like toxins and tachylectin-like lectins, a previously unknown structure that resembles plant Type-2 ribosome-inactivating proteins and bacterial botulinum toxins. The protomer has therefore a novel AB toxin combination of a MACPF-like chain linked by disulfide bonds to a lectin-like chain, indicating a delivery system for the former. This was further supported by observing PcPV2 binding to glycocalix of enterocytes in vivo and in culture, and by its hemaggutinating, but not hemolytic activity, which suggested an interaction with surface oligosaccharides. PcPV2 is able to get into predator's body as evidenced in rats and mice by the presence of circulating antibodies in response to sublethal oral doses. To our knowledge, a lectin-pore-forming toxin has not been reported before, providing the first evidence of a neurotoxic lectin in animals, and a novel function for ancient and widely distributed proteins. The acquisition of this unique neurotoxic/antinutritive/storage protein may confer the eggs a survival advantage

  9. Staphylococcus aureus α-toxin modulates skin host response to viral infection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bin, Lianghua; Kim, Byung Eui; Brauweiler, Anne; Goleva, Elena; Streib, Joanne; Ji, Yinduo; Schlievert, Patrick M; Leung, Donald Y M

    2012-09-01

    Patients with atopic dermatitis (AD) with a history of eczema herpeticum have increased staphylococcal colonization and infections. However, whether Staphylococcus aureus alters the outcome of skin viral infection has not been determined. We investigated whether S aureus toxins modulated host response to herpes simplex virus (HSV) 1 and vaccinia virus (VV) infections in normal human keratinocytes (NHKs) and in murine infection models. NHKs were treated with S aureus toxins before incubation of viruses. BALB/c mice were inoculated with S aureus 2 days before VV scarification. Viral loads of HSV-1 and VV were evaluated by using real-time PCR, a viral plaque-forming assay, and immunofluorescence staining. Small interfering RNA duplexes were used to knockdown the gene expression of the cellular receptor of α-toxin, a disintegrin and metalloprotease 10 (ADAM10). ADAM10 protein and α-toxin heptamers were detected by using Western blot assays. We demonstrate that sublytic staphylococcal α-toxin increases viral loads of HSV-1 and VV in NHKs. Furthermore, we demonstrate in vivo that the VV load is significantly greater (P skin inoculated with an α-toxin-producing S aureus strain compared with murine skin inoculated with the isogenic α-toxin-deleted strain. The viral enhancing effect of α-toxin is mediated by ADAM10 and is associated with its pore-forming property. Moreover, we demonstrate that α-toxin promotes viral entry in NHKs. The current study introduces the novel concept that staphylococcal α-toxin promotes viral skin infection and provides a mechanism by which S aureus infection might predispose the host toward disseminated viral infections. Copyright © 2012 American Academy of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology. Published by Mosby, Inc. All rights reserved.

  10. Tarantula toxins use common surfaces for interacting with Kv and ASIC ion channels.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gupta, Kanchan; Zamanian, Maryam; Bae, Chanhyung; Milescu, Mirela; Krepkiy, Dmitriy; Tilley, Drew C; Sack, Jon T; Yarov-Yarovoy, Vladimir; Kim, Jae Il; Swartz, Kenton J

    2015-05-07

    Tarantula toxins that bind to voltage-sensing domains of voltage-activated ion channels are thought to partition into the membrane and bind to the channel within the bilayer. While no structures of a voltage-sensor toxin bound to a channel have been solved, a structural homolog, psalmotoxin (PcTx1), was recently crystalized in complex with the extracellular domain of an acid sensing ion channel (ASIC). In the present study we use spectroscopic, biophysical and computational approaches to compare membrane interaction properties and channel binding surfaces of PcTx1 with the voltage-sensor toxin guangxitoxin (GxTx-1E). Our results show that both types of tarantula toxins interact with membranes, but that voltage-sensor toxins partition deeper into the bilayer. In addition, our results suggest that tarantula toxins have evolved a similar concave surface for clamping onto α-helices that is effective in aqueous or lipidic physical environments.

  11. Linking structural features of protein complexes and biological function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sowmya, Gopichandran; Breen, Edmond J; Ranganathan, Shoba

    2015-09-01

    Protein-protein interaction (PPI) establishes the central basis for complex cellular networks in a biological cell. Association of proteins with other proteins occurs at varying affinities, yet with a high degree of specificity. PPIs lead to diverse functionality such as catalysis, regulation, signaling, immunity, and inhibition, playing a crucial role in functional genomics. The molecular principle of such interactions is often elusive in nature. Therefore, a comprehensive analysis of known protein complexes from the Protein Data Bank (PDB) is essential for the characterization of structural interface features to determine structure-function relationship. Thus, we analyzed a nonredundant dataset of 278 heterodimer protein complexes, categorized into major functional classes, for distinguishing features. Interestingly, our analysis has identified five key features (interface area, interface polar residue abundance, hydrogen bonds, solvation free energy gain from interface formation, and binding energy) that are discriminatory among the functional classes using Kruskal-Wallis rank sum test. Significant correlations between these PPI interface features amongst functional categories are also documented. Salt bridges correlate with interface area in regulator-inhibitors (r = 0.75). These representative features have implications for the prediction of potential function of novel protein complexes. The results provide molecular insights for better understanding of PPIs and their relation to biological functions. © 2015 The Protein Society.

  12. Helicobacter pylori VacA toxin/subunit p34: targeting of an anion channel to the inner mitochondrial membrane.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Grazyna Domańska

    2010-04-01

    Full Text Available The vacuolating toxin VacA, released by Helicobacter pylori, is an important virulence factor in the pathogenesis of gastritis and gastroduodenal ulcers. VacA contains two subunits: The p58 subunit mediates entry into target cells, and the p34 subunit mediates targeting to mitochondria and is essential for toxicity. In this study we found that targeting to mitochondria is dependent on a unique signal sequence of 32 uncharged amino acid residues at the p34 N-terminus. Mitochondrial import of p34 is mediated by the import receptor Tom20 and the import channel of the outer membrane TOM complex, leading to insertion of p34 into the mitochondrial inner membrane. p34 assembles in homo-hexamers of extraordinary high stability. CD spectra of the purified protein indicate a content of >40% beta-strands, similar to pore-forming beta-barrel proteins. p34 forms an anion channel with a conductivity of about 12 pS in 1.5 M KCl buffer. Oligomerization and channel formation are independent both of the 32 uncharged N-terminal residues and of the p58 subunit of the toxin. The conductivity is efficiently blocked by 5-nitro-2-(3-phenylpropylaminobenzoic acid (NPPB, a reagent known to inhibit VacA-mediated apoptosis. We conclude that p34 essentially acts as a small pore-forming toxin, targeted to the mitochondrial inner membrane by a special hydrophobic N-terminal signal.

  13. Contribution of pertussis toxin to the pathogenesis of pertussis disease

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carbonetti, Nicholas H.

    2015-01-01

    Pertussis toxin (PT) is a multisubunit protein toxin secreted by Bordetella pertussis, the bacterial agent of the disease pertussis or whooping cough. PT in detoxified form is a component of all licensed acellular pertussis vaccines, since it is considered to be an important virulence factor for this pathogen. PT inhibits G protein-coupled receptor signaling through Gi proteins in mammalian cells, an activity that has led to its widespread use as a cell biology tool. But how does this activity of PT contribute to pertussis, including the severe respiratory symptoms of this disease? In this minireview, the contribution of PT to the pathogenesis of pertussis disease will be considered based on evidence from both human infections and animal model studies. Although definitive proof of the role of PT in humans is lacking, substantial evidence supports the idea that PT is a major contributor to pertussis pathology, including the severe respiratory symptoms associated with this disease. PMID:26394801

  14. AdE-1, a new inotropic Na(+) channel toxin from Aiptasia diaphana, is similar to, yet distinct from, known anemone Na(+) channel toxins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nesher, Nir; Shapira, Eli; Sher, Daniel; Moran, Yehu; Tsveyer, Liora; Turchetti-Maia, Ana Luiza; Horowitz, Michal; Hochner, Binyamin; Zlotkin, Eliahu

    2013-04-01

    Heart failure is one of the most prevalent causes of death in the western world. Sea anemone contains a myriad of short peptide neurotoxins affecting many pharmacological targets, several of which possess cardiotonic activity. In the present study we describe the isolation and characterization of AdE-1 (ion channel modifier), a novel cardiotonic peptide from the sea anemone Aiptasia diaphana, which differs from other cnidarian toxins. Although AdE-1 has the same cysteine residue arrangement as sea anemone type 1 and 2 Na(+) channel toxins, its sequence contains many substitutions in conserved and essential sites and its overall homology to other toxins identified to date is low (Anemonia viridis toxin II), AdE-1 markedly inhibits Na(+) current inactivation with no significant effect on current activation, suggesting a similar mechanism of action. However, its effects on twitch relaxation velocity, action potential amplitude and on the time to peak suggest that this novel toxin affects cardiomyocyte function via a more complex mechanism. Additionally, Av2's characteristic delayed and early after-depolarizations were not observed. Despite its structural differences, AdE-1 physiologic effectiveness is comparable with Av2 with a similar ED(50) value to blowfly larvae. This finding raises questions regarding the extent of the universality of structure-function in sea anemone Na(+) channel toxins.

  15. Recent advances in the understanding of brown spider venoms: From the biology of spiders to the molecular mechanisms of toxins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gremski, Luiza Helena; Trevisan-Silva, Dilza; Ferrer, Valéria Pereira; Matsubara, Fernando Hitomi; Meissner, Gabriel Otto; Wille, Ana Carolina Martins; Vuitika, Larissa; Dias-Lopes, Camila; Ullah, Anwar; de Moraes, Fábio Rogério; Chávez-Olórtegui, Carlos; Barbaro, Katia Cristina; Murakami, Mario Tyago; Arni, Raghuvir Krishnaswamy; Senff-Ribeiro, Andrea; Chaim, Olga Meiri; Veiga, Silvio Sanches

    2014-06-01

    The Loxosceles genus spiders (the brown spiders) are encountered in all the continents, and the clinical manifestations following spider bites include skin necrosis with gravitational lesion spreading and occasional systemic manifestations, such as intravascular hemolysis, thrombocytopenia and acute renal failure. Brown spider venoms are complex mixtures of toxins especially enriched in three molecular families: the phospholipases D, astacin-like metalloproteases and Inhibitor Cystine Knot (ICK) peptides. Other toxins with low level of expression also present in the venom include the serine proteases, serine protease inhibitors, hyaluronidases, allergen factors and translationally controlled tumor protein (TCTP). The mechanisms by which the Loxosceles venoms act and exert their noxious effects are not fully understood. Except for the brown spider venom phospholipase D, which causes dermonecrosis, hemolysis, thrombocytopenia and renal failure, the pathological activities of the other venom toxins remain unclear. The objective of the present review is to provide insights into the brown spider venoms and loxoscelism based on recent results. These insights include the biology of brown spiders, the clinical features of loxoscelism and the diagnosis and therapy of brown spider bites. Regarding the brown spider venom, this review includes a description of the novel toxins revealed by molecular biology and proteomics techniques, the data regarding three-dimensional toxin structures, and the mechanism of action of these molecules. Finally, the biotechnological applications of the venom components, especially for those toxins reported as recombinant molecules, and the challenges for future study are discussed. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  16. Uremic Toxins Enhance Statin-Induced Cytotoxicity in Differentiated Human Rhabdomyosarcoma Cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hitoshi Uchiyama

    2014-09-01

    Full Text Available The risk of myopathy and rhabdomyolysis is considerably increased in statin users with end-stage renal failure (ESRF. Uremic toxins, which accumulate in patients with ESRF, exert cytotoxic effects that are mediated by various mechanisms. Therefore, accumulation of uremic toxins might increase statin-induced cytotoxicity. The purpose of this study was to determine the effect of four uremic toxins—hippuric acid, 3-carboxy-4-methyl-5-propyl-2-furanpropionate, indole-3-acetic acid, and 3-indoxyl sulfate—on statin-induced myopathy. Differentiated rhabdomyosarcoma cells were pre-treated with the uremic toxins for seven days, and then the cells were treated with pravastatin or simvastatin. Cell viability and apoptosis were assessed by viability assays and flow cytometry. Pre-treatment with uremic toxins increased statin- but not cisplatin-induced cytotoxicity (p < 0.05 vs. untreated. In addition, the pre-treatment increased statin-induced apoptosis, which is one of the cytotoxic factors (p < 0.05 vs. untreated. However, mevalonate, farnesol, and geranylgeraniol reversed the effects of uremic toxins and lowered statin-induced cytotoxicity (p < 0.05 vs. untreated. These results demonstrate that uremic toxins enhance statin-induced apoptosis and cytotoxicity. The mechanism underlying this effect might be associated with small G-protein geranylgeranylation. In conclusion, the increased severity of statin-induced rhabdomyolysis in patients with ESRF is likely due to the accumulation of uremic toxins.

  17. Decomposition of overlapping protein complexes: A graph theoretical method for analyzing static and dynamic protein associations

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Guimarães Katia S

    2006-04-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Most cellular processes are carried out by multi-protein complexes, groups of proteins that bind together to perform a specific task. Some proteins form stable complexes, while other proteins form transient associations and are part of several complexes at different stages of a cellular process. A better understanding of this higher-order organization of proteins into overlapping complexes is an important step towards unveiling functional and evolutionary mechanisms behind biological networks. Results We propose a new method for identifying and representing overlapping protein complexes (or larger units called functional groups within a protein interaction network. We develop a graph-theoretical framework that enables automatic construction of such representation. We illustrate the effectiveness of our method by applying it to TNFα/NF-κB and pheromone signaling pathways. Conclusion The proposed representation helps in understanding the transitions between functional groups and allows for tracking a protein's path through a cascade of functional groups. Therefore, depending on the nature of the network, our representation is capable of elucidating temporal relations between functional groups. Our results show that the proposed method opens a new avenue for the analysis of protein interaction networks.

  18. A bacterial toxin-antitoxin module is the origin of inter-bacterial and inter-kingdom effectors of Bartonella.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harms, Alexander; Liesch, Marius; Körner, Jonas; Québatte, Maxime; Engel, Philipp; Dehio, Christoph

    2017-10-01

    Host-targeting type IV secretion systems (T4SS) evolved from conjugative T4SS machineries that mediate interbacterial plasmid transfer. However, the origins of effectors secreted by these virulence devices have remained largely elusive. Previous work showed that some effectors exhibit homology to toxins of bacterial toxin-antitoxin modules, but the evolutionary trajectories underlying these ties had not been resolved. We previously reported that FicT toxins of FicTA toxin-antitoxin modules disrupt cellular DNA topology via their enzymatic FIC (filamentation induced by cAMP) domain. Intriguingly, the FIC domain of the FicT toxin VbhT of Bartonella schoenbuchensis is fused to a type IV secretion signal-the BID (Bep intracellular delivery) domain-similar to the Bartonella effector proteins (Beps) that are secreted into eukaryotic host cells via the host-targeting VirB T4SS. In this study, we show that the VbhT toxin is an interbacterial effector protein secreted via the conjugative Vbh T4SS that is closely related to the VirB T4SS and encoded by plasmid pVbh of B. schoenbuchensis. We therefore propose that the Vbh T4SS together with its effector VbhT represent an evolutionary missing link on a path that leads from a regular conjugation system and FicTA toxin-antitoxin modules to the VirB T4SS and the Beps. Intriguingly, phylogenetic analyses revealed that the fusion of FIC and BID domains has probably occurred independently in VbhT and the common ancestor of the Beps, suggesting parallel evolutionary paths. Moreover, several other examples of TA module toxins that are bona fide substrates of conjugative T4SS indicate that their recruitment as interbacterial effectors is prevalent and serves yet unknown biological functions in the context of bacterial conjugation. We propose that the adaptation for interbacterial transfer favors the exaptation of FicT and other TA module toxins as inter-kingdom effectors and may thus constitute an important stepping stone in the

  19. A bacterial toxin-antitoxin module is the origin of inter-bacterial and inter-kingdom effectors of Bartonella.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alexander Harms

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available Host-targeting type IV secretion systems (T4SS evolved from conjugative T4SS machineries that mediate interbacterial plasmid transfer. However, the origins of effectors secreted by these virulence devices have remained largely elusive. Previous work showed that some effectors exhibit homology to toxins of bacterial toxin-antitoxin modules, but the evolutionary trajectories underlying these ties had not been resolved. We previously reported that FicT toxins of FicTA toxin-antitoxin modules disrupt cellular DNA topology via their enzymatic FIC (filamentation induced by cAMP domain. Intriguingly, the FIC domain of the FicT toxin VbhT of Bartonella schoenbuchensis is fused to a type IV secretion signal-the BID (Bep intracellular delivery domain-similar to the Bartonella effector proteins (Beps that are secreted into eukaryotic host cells via the host-targeting VirB T4SS. In this study, we show that the VbhT toxin is an interbacterial effector protein secreted via the conjugative Vbh T4SS that is closely related to the VirB T4SS and encoded by plasmid pVbh of B. schoenbuchensis. We therefore propose that the Vbh T4SS together with its effector VbhT represent an evolutionary missing link on a path that leads from a regular conjugation system and FicTA toxin-antitoxin modules to the VirB T4SS and the Beps. Intriguingly, phylogenetic analyses revealed that the fusion of FIC and BID domains has probably occurred independently in VbhT and the common ancestor of the Beps, suggesting parallel evolutionary paths. Moreover, several other examples of TA module toxins that are bona fide substrates of conjugative T4SS indicate that their recruitment as interbacterial effectors is prevalent and serves yet unknown biological functions in the context of bacterial conjugation. We propose that the adaptation for interbacterial transfer favors the exaptation of FicT and other TA module toxins as inter-kingdom effectors and may thus constitute an important stepping

  20. Trends in the Evolution of Snake Toxins Underscored by an Integrative Omics Approach to Profile the Venom of the Colubrid Phalotris mertensi.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Campos, Pollyanna Fernandes; Andrade-Silva, Débora; Zelanis, André; Paes Leme, Adriana Franco; Rocha, Marisa Maria Teixeira; Menezes, Milene Cristina; Serrano, Solange M T; Junqueira-de-Azevedo, Inácio de Loiola Meirelles

    2016-08-16

    Only few studies on snake venoms were dedicated to deeply characterize the toxin secretion of animals from the Colubridae family, despite the fact that they represent the majority of snake diversity. As a consequence, some evolutionary trends observed in venom proteins that underpinned the evolutionary histories of snake toxins were based on data from a minor parcel of the clade. Here, we investigated the proteins of the totally unknown venom from Phalotris mertensi (Dipsadinae subfamily), in order to obtain a detailed profile of its toxins and to appreciate evolutionary tendencies occurring in colubrid venoms. By means of integrated omics and functional approaches, including RNAseq, Sanger sequencing, high-resolution proteomics, recombinant protein production, and enzymatic tests, we verified an active toxic secretion containing up to 21 types of proteins. A high content of Kunitz-type proteins and C-type lectins were observed, although several enzymatic components such as metalloproteinases and an L-amino acid oxidase were also present in the venom. Interestingly, an arguable venom component of other species was demonstrated as a true venom protein and named svLIPA (snake venom acid lipase). This finding indicates the importance of checking the actual protein occurrence across species before rejecting genes suggested to code for toxins, which are relevant for the discussion about the early evolution of reptile venoms. Moreover, trends in the evolution of some toxin classes, such as simplification of metalloproteinases and rearrangements of Kunitz and Wap domains, parallel similar phenomena observed in other venomous snake families and provide a broader picture of toxin evolution. © The Author 2016. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for Molecular Biology and Evolution.

  1. Characterising antimicrobial protein-membrane complexes

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Xun, Gloria; Dingley, Andrew; Tremouilhac, Pierre

    2009-01-01

    Full text: Antimicrobial proteins (AMPs) are host defence molecules that protect organisms from microbial infection. A number of hypotheses for AMP activity have been proposed which involve protein membrane interactions. However, there is a paucity of information describing AMP-membrane complexes in detail. The aim of this project is to characterise the interactions of amoebapore-A (APA-1) with membrane models using primarily solution-state NMR spectroscopy. APA-1 is an AMP which is regulated by a pH-dependent dimerisation event. Based on the atomic resolution solution structure of monomeric APA-1, it is proposed that this dimerisation is a prerequisite for ring-like hexameric pore formation. Due to the cytotoxicity of APA-1, we have developed a cell-free system to produce this protein. To facilitate our studies, we have adapted the cell-free system to isotope label APA-1. 13 C /15 N -enriched APA-1 sample was achieved and we have begun characterising APA-1 dimerisation and membrane interactions using NMR spectroscopy and other biochemical/biophysical methods. Neutron reflectometry is a surface-sensitive technique and therefore represents an ideal technique to probe how APA-1 interacts with membranes at the molecular level under different physiological conditions. Using Platypus, the pH-induced APA-1-membrane interactions should be detectable as an increase of the amount of protein adsorbed at the membrane surface and changes in the membrane properties. Specifically, detailed information of the structure and dimensions of the protein-membrane complex, the position and amount of the protein in the membrane, and the perturbation of the membrane phospholipids on protein incorporation can be extracted from the neutron reflectometry measurement. Such information will enable critical assessment of current proposed mechanisms of AMP activity in bacterial membranes and complement our NMR studies

  2. Recording information on protein complexes in an information management system.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Savitsky, Marc; Diprose, Jonathan M; Morris, Chris; Griffiths, Susanne L; Daniel, Edward; Lin, Bill; Daenke, Susan; Bishop, Benjamin; Siebold, Christian; Wilson, Keith S; Blake, Richard; Stuart, David I; Esnouf, Robert M

    2011-08-01

    The Protein Information Management System (PiMS) is a laboratory information management system (LIMS) designed for use with the production of proteins in a research environment. The software is distributed under the CCP4 licence, and so is available free of charge to academic laboratories. Like most LIMS, the underlying PiMS data model originally had no support for protein-protein complexes. To support the SPINE2-Complexes project the developers have extended PiMS to meet these requirements. The modifications to PiMS, described here, include data model changes, additional protocols, some user interface changes and functionality to detect when an experiment may have formed a complex. Example data are shown for the production of a crystal of a protein complex. Integration with SPINE2-Complexes Target Tracker application is also described. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  3. Down-regulation of ATF2 in the inhibition of T-2-toxin-induced chondrocyte apoptosis by selenium chondroitin sulfate nanoparticles

    Science.gov (United States)

    Han, Jing; Guo, Xiong

    2013-12-01

    Selenium chondroitin sulfate nanoparticles (SeCS) with a size range of 30-200 nm were obtained in our previous study. Meanwhile, the up-regulated expression of ATF2 mRNA and protein levels could be observed in the cartilage from Kashin-Beck disease (KBD) patients. In this paper, we investigated the inhibition effect of SeCS on T-2-toxin-induced apoptosis of chondrocyte from KBD patients. Here, we found that when the chondrocytes were treated with T-2 toxin, the chondrocyte apoptosis performed in a concentration-dependent manner. The apoptosis of chondrocyte induced by T-2 toxin involved the increased levels of ATF2, JNK and p38 mRNAs and related protein expression. SeCS could partly block the T-2-toxin-induced chondrocyte apoptosis by decreasing the expression of ATF2, JNK and p38 mRNAs and p-JNK, p-38, ATF2 and p-ATF2 proteins. JNK and p38 pathways involved in the apoptosis of chondrocyte induced by T-2 toxin, and SeCS was efficient in the inhibition of chondrocyte apoptosis by T-2 toxin. These results suggested that SeCS had a potential for further prevention and treatment for KBD as well as other selenium deficiency disease.

  4. Structure of a bacterial toxin-activating acyltransferase.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Greene, Nicholas P; Crow, Allister; Hughes, Colin; Koronakis, Vassilis

    2015-06-09

    Secreted pore-forming toxins of pathogenic Gram-negative bacteria such as Escherichia coli hemolysin (HlyA) insert into host-cell membranes to subvert signal transduction and induce apoptosis and cell lysis. Unusually, these toxins are synthesized in an inactive form that requires posttranslational activation in the bacterial cytosol. We have previously shown that the activation mechanism is an acylation event directed by a specialized acyl-transferase that uses acyl carrier protein (ACP) to covalently link fatty acids, via an amide bond, to specific internal lysine residues of the protoxin. We now reveal the 2.15-Å resolution X-ray structure of the 172-aa ApxC, a toxin-activating acyl-transferase (TAAT) from pathogenic Actinobacillus pleuropneumoniae. This determination shows that bacterial TAATs are a structurally homologous family that, despite indiscernible sequence similarity, form a distinct branch of the Gcn5-like N-acetyl transferase (GNAT) superfamily of enzymes that typically use acyl-CoA to modify diverse bacterial, archaeal, and eukaryotic substrates. A combination of structural analysis, small angle X-ray scattering, mutagenesis, and cross-linking defined the solution state of TAATs, with intermonomer interactions mediated by an N-terminal α-helix. Superposition of ApxC with substrate-bound GNATs, and assay of toxin activation and binding of acyl-ACP and protoxin peptide substrates by mutated ApxC variants, indicates the enzyme active site to be a deep surface groove.

  5. Proteomics-Based Analysis of Protein Complexes in Pluripotent Stem Cells and Cancer Biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sudhir, Putty-Reddy; Chen, Chung-Hsuan

    2016-03-22

    A protein complex consists of two or more proteins that are linked together through protein-protein interactions. The proteins show stable/transient and direct/indirect interactions within the protein complex or between the protein complexes. Protein complexes are involved in regulation of most of the cellular processes and molecular functions. The delineation of protein complexes is important to expand our knowledge on proteins functional roles in physiological and pathological conditions. The genetic yeast-2-hybrid method has been extensively used to characterize protein-protein interactions. Alternatively, a biochemical-based affinity purification coupled with mass spectrometry (AP-MS) approach has been widely used to characterize the protein complexes. In the AP-MS method, a protein complex of a target protein of interest is purified using a specific antibody or an affinity tag (e.g., DYKDDDDK peptide (FLAG) and polyhistidine (His)) and is subsequently analyzed by means of MS. Tandem affinity purification, a two-step purification system, coupled with MS has been widely used mainly to reduce the contaminants. We review here a general principle for AP-MS-based characterization of protein complexes and we explore several protein complexes identified in pluripotent stem cell biology and cancer biology as examples.

  6. Botulinum toxin

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nigam P

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available Botulinum toxin, one of the most poisonous biological substances known, is a neurotoxin produced by the bacterium Clostridium botulinum. C. botulinum elaborates eight antigenically distinguishable exotoxins (A, B, C 1 , C 2 , D, E, F and G. All serotypes interfere with neural transmission by blocking the release of acetylcholine, the principal neurotransmitter at the neuromuscular junction, causing muscle paralysis. The weakness induced by injection with botulinum toxin A usually lasts about three months. Botulinum toxins now play a very significant role in the management of a wide variety of medical conditions, especially strabismus and focal dystonias, hemifacial spasm, and various spastic movement disorders, headaches, hypersalivation, hyperhidrosis, and some chronic conditions that respond only partially to medical treatment. The list of possible new indications is rapidly expanding. The cosmetological applications include correction of lines, creases and wrinkling all over the face, chin, neck, and chest to dermatological applications such as hyperhidrosis. Injections with botulinum toxin are generally well tolerated and side effects are few. A precise knowledge and understanding of the functional anatomy of the mimetic muscles is absolutely necessary to correctly use botulinum toxins in clinical practice.

  7. Structure, Function and Evolution of Clostridium botulinum C2 and C3 Toxins: Insight to Poultry and Veterinary Vaccines.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chellapandi, Paulchamy; Prisilla, Arokiyasamy

    2017-01-01

    Clostridium botulinum group III strains are able to produce cytotoxins, C2 toxin and C3 exotoxin, along with botulinum neurotoxin types C and D. C2 toxin and C3 exotoxin produced by this organism are the most important members of bacterial ADP-ribosyltransferase superfamily. Both toxins have distinct pathophysiological functions in the avian and mammalian hosts. The members of this superfamily transfer an ADP-ribose moiety of NAD+ to specific eukaryotic target proteins. The present review describes the structure, function and evolution aspects of these toxins with a special emphasis to the development of veterinary vaccines. C2 toxin is a binary toxin that consists of a catalytic subunit (C2I) and a translocation subunit (C2II). C2I component is structurally and functionally similar to the VIP2 and iota A toxin whereas C2II component shows a significant homology with the protective antigen from anthrax toxin and iota B. Unlike C2 toxin, C3 toxin is devoid of translocation/binding subunit. Extensive studies on their sequence-structure-function link spawn additional efforts to understand the catalytic mechanisms and target recognition. Structural and functional relationships with them are often determined by using evolutionary constraints as valuable biological measures. Enzyme-deficient mutants derived from these toxins have been used as drug/protein delivery systems in eukaryotic cells. Thus, current knowledge on their molecular diversity is a well-known perspective to design immunotoxin or subunit vaccine for C. botulinum infection. Copyright© Bentham Science Publishers; For any queries, please email at epub@benthamscience.org.

  8. Mechanisms of Action and Cell Death Associated with Clostridium perfringens Toxins

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mauricio A. Navarro

    2018-05-01

    Full Text Available Clostridium perfringens uses its large arsenal of protein toxins to produce histotoxic, neurologic and intestinal infections in humans and animals. The major toxins involved in diseases are alpha (CPA, beta (CPB, epsilon (ETX, iota (ITX, enterotoxin (CPE, and necrotic B-like (NetB toxins. CPA is the main virulence factor involved in gas gangrene in humans, whereas its role in animal diseases is limited and controversial. CPB is responsible for necrotizing enteritis and enterotoxemia, mostly in neonatal individuals of many animal species, including humans. ETX is the main toxin involved in enterotoxemia of sheep and goats. ITX has been implicated in cases of enteritis in rabbits and other animal species; however, its specific role in causing disease has not been proved. CPE is responsible for human food-poisoning and non-foodborne C. perfringens-mediated diarrhea. NetB is the cause of necrotic enteritis in chickens. In most cases, host–toxin interaction starts on the plasma membrane of target cells via specific receptors, resulting in the activation of intracellular pathways with a variety of effects, commonly including cell death. In general, the molecular mechanisms of cell death associated with C. perfringens toxins involve features of apoptosis, necrosis and/or necroptosis.

  9. Structural analysis of the active site architecture of the VapC toxin from Shigella flexneri

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Xu, Kehan; Dedic, Emil; Brodersen, Ditlev Egeskov

    2016-01-01

    The VapC toxin from the Shigella flexneri 2a virulence plasmid pMYSH6000 belongs to the PIN domain protein family, which is characterized by a conserved fold with low amino acid sequence conservation. The toxin is a bona fide Mg2+-dependent ribonuclease and has been shown to target initiator t...

  10. The Regulatory Networks That Control Clostridium difficile Toxin Synthesis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martin-Verstraete, Isabelle; Peltier, Johann; Dupuy, Bruno

    2016-01-01

    The pathogenic clostridia cause many human and animal diseases, which typically arise as a consequence of the production of potent exotoxins. Among the enterotoxic clostridia, Clostridium difficile is the main causative agent of nosocomial intestinal infections in adults with a compromised gut microbiota caused by antibiotic treatment. The symptoms of C. difficile infection are essentially caused by the production of two exotoxins: TcdA and TcdB. Moreover, for severe forms of disease, the spectrum of diseases caused by C. difficile has also been correlated to the levels of toxins that are produced during host infection. This observation strengthened the idea that the regulation of toxin synthesis is an important part of C. difficile pathogenesis. This review summarizes our current knowledge about the regulators and sigma factors that have been reported to control toxin gene expression in response to several environmental signals and stresses, including the availability of certain carbon sources and amino acids, or to signaling molecules, such as the autoinducing peptides of quorum sensing systems. The overlapping regulation of key metabolic pathways and toxin synthesis strongly suggests that toxin production is a complex response that is triggered by bacteria in response to particular states of nutrient availability during infection. PMID:27187475

  11. Proteomics-based identification of midgut proteins correlated with Cry1Ac resistance in Plutella xylostella (L.).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xia, Jixing; Guo, Zhaojiang; Yang, Zezhong; Zhu, Xun; Kang, Shi; Yang, Xin; Yang, Fengshan; Wu, Qingjun; Wang, Shaoli; Xie, Wen; Xu, Weijun; Zhang, Youjun

    2016-09-01

    The diamondback moth, Plutella xylostella (L.), is a worldwide pest of cruciferous crops and can rapidly develop resistance to many chemical insecticides. Although insecticidal crystal proteins (i.e., Cry and Cyt toxins) derived from Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt) have been useful alternatives to chemical insecticides for the control of P. xylostella, resistance to Bt in field populations of P. xylostella has already been reported. A better understanding of the resistance mechanisms to Bt should be valuable in delaying resistance development. In this study, the mechanisms underlying P. xylostella resistance to Bt Cry1Ac toxin were investigated using two-dimensional differential in-gel electrophoresis (2D-DIGE) and ligand blotting for the first time. Comparative analyses of the constitutive expression of midgut proteins in Cry1Ac-susceptible and -resistant P. xylostella larvae revealed 31 differentially expressed proteins, 21 of which were identified by mass spectrometry. Of these identified proteins, the following fell into diverse eukaryotic orthologous group (KOG) subcategories may be involved in Cry1Ac resistance in P. xylostella: ATP-binding cassette (ABC) transporter subfamily G member 4 (ABCG4), trypsin, heat shock protein 70 (HSP70), vacuolar H(+)-ATPase, actin, glycosylphosphatidylinositol anchor attachment 1 protein (GAA1) and solute carrier family 30 member 1 (SLC30A1). Additionally, ligand blotting identified the following midgut proteins as Cry1Ac-binding proteins in Cry1Ac-susceptible P. xylostella larvae: ABC transporter subfamily C member 1 (ABCC1), solute carrier family 36 member 1 (SLC36A1), NADH dehydrogenase iron-sulfur protein 3 (NDUFS3), prohibitin and Rap1 GTPase-activating protein 1. Collectively, these proteomic results increase our understanding of the molecular resistance mechanisms to Bt Cry1Ac toxin in P. xylostella and also demonstrate that resistance to Bt Cry1Ac toxin is complex and multifaceted. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All

  12. Principles of assembly reveal a periodic table of protein complexes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ahnert, Sebastian E; Marsh, Joseph A; Hernández, Helena; Robinson, Carol V; Teichmann, Sarah A

    2015-12-11

    Structural insights into protein complexes have had a broad impact on our understanding of biological function and evolution. In this work, we sought a comprehensive understanding of the general principles underlying quaternary structure organization in protein complexes. We first examined the fundamental steps by which protein complexes can assemble, using experimental and structure-based characterization of assembly pathways. Most assembly transitions can be classified into three basic types, which can then be used to exhaustively enumerate a large set of possible quaternary structure topologies. These topologies, which include the vast majority of observed protein complex structures, enable a natural organization of protein complexes into a periodic table. On the basis of this table, we can accurately predict the expected frequencies of quaternary structure topologies, including those not yet observed. These results have important implications for quaternary structure prediction, modeling, and engineering. Copyright © 2015, American Association for the Advancement of Science.

  13. SINGLE CHAIN VARIABLE FRAGMENTS OF ANTIBODIES AGAINST DIPHTHERIA TOXIN B-SUBUNIT ISOLATED FROM PHAGE DISPLAY HUMAN ANTIBODY LIBRARY

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Oliinyk O. S.

    2014-02-01

    Full Text Available Diphtheria toxin is an exoantigen of Corynebacterium diphtheriae that inhibits protein synthesis and kills sensitive cells. The aim of this study was to obtain human recombinant single-chain variable fragment (scFv antibodies against receptor-binding B subunit of diphtheria toxin. 12 specific clones were selected after three rounds of a phage display naїve (unimmunized human antibody library against recombinant B-subunit. scFv DNA inserts from these 12 clones were digested with MvaI, and 6 unique restriction patterns were found. Single-chain antibodies were expressed in Escherichia coli XL1-blue. The recombinant proteins were characterized by immunoblotting of bacterial extracts and detection with an anti-E-tag antibody. The toxin B-subunit-binding function of the single-chain antibody was shown by ELISA. The affinity constants for different clones were found to be from 106 to 108 М–1. Due to the fact, that these antibody fragments recognized epitopes in the receptor-binding Bsubunit of diphtheria toxin, further studies are interesting to evaluate their toxin neutralization properties and potential for therapeutic applications. Obtained scFv-antibodies can also be used for detection and investigation of biological properties of diphtheria toxin.

  14. Formation of protein-birnessite complex: XRD, FTIR, and AFM analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Naidja, A; Liu, C; Huang, P M

    2002-07-01

    Limited information is available on formation chemistry of enzyme-Mn oxide complexes. Adsorption isotherm of protein molecules (tyrosinase) on birnessite (delta-MnO(2)) at pH 6.0 and room temperature (23 degrees C) was of H type, indicating a very high affinity of the enzyme protein molecules to the birnessite mineral surfaces. After thorough washing of the protein-mineral complex with deionized-distilled water, up to 89% of adsorbed protein molecules remained bound to the mineral surfaces. When a high amount of the protein was immobilized, the X-ray diffractogram shows a significant decrease in the intensity of characteristic d-spacings of birnessite. No shift to higher values of the d-spacings of protein-birnessite complex was observed, indicating that the enzyme molecules were not intercalated in the mineral structure but immobilized at the external surfaces and the edges of the mineral oxide. By comparison to the free enzyme, infrared absorption spectra of the protein-birnessite complexes show a shift by up to 11 cm(-1) to lower frequencies in the absorption bands characteristic of amide I and II modes of the polypeptides chains. The mineral surfaces exerted some strain on the protein structure, resulting in an alteration of the protein molecular conformation after binding to the mineral colloid surfaces. In the free state, the globular protein molecules had a spheroid shape with an average cross-sectional diameter of 70+/-6 nm. The unfolding and flattening of the protein molecules after immobilization is clearly shown in atomic force micrographs. Compared to the tyrosinase-birnessite complex, similar FTIR spectra and atomic force micrographs were observed for the pure protein, bovine serum albumin (BSA), after immobilization on birnessite. The information obtained in this study is of fundamental significance for understanding birnessite as an adsorbent of biopolymers and the catalytic role of the enzyme-birnessite complex.

  15. Fucosylation and protein glycosylation create functional receptors for cholera toxin

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Wands, Amberlyn M; Fujita, Akiko; McCombs, Janet E

    2015-01-01

    Cholera toxin (CT) enters and intoxicates host cells after binding cell surface receptors using its B subunit (CTB). The ganglioside (glycolipid) GM1 is thought to be the sole CT receptor; however, the mechanism by which CTB binding to GM1 mediates internalization of CT remains enigmatic. Here we...... in normal human intestinal epithelia and could play a role in cholera....

  16. Analysis of Proteins, Protein Complexes, and Organellar Proteomes Using Sheathless Capillary Zone Electrophoresis - Native Mass Spectrometry

    Science.gov (United States)

    Belov, Arseniy M.; Viner, Rosa; Santos, Marcia R.; Horn, David M.; Bern, Marshall; Karger, Barry L.; Ivanov, Alexander R.

    2017-12-01

    Native mass spectrometry (MS) is a rapidly advancing field in the analysis of proteins, protein complexes, and macromolecular species of various types. The majority of native MS experiments reported to-date has been conducted using direct infusion of purified analytes into a mass spectrometer. In this study, capillary zone electrophoresis (CZE) was coupled online to Orbitrap mass spectrometers using a commercial sheathless interface to enable high-performance separation, identification, and structural characterization of limited amounts of purified proteins and protein complexes, the latter with preserved non-covalent associations under native conditions. The performance of both bare-fused silica and polyacrylamide-coated capillaries was assessed using mixtures of protein standards known to form non-covalent protein-protein and protein-ligand complexes. High-efficiency separation of native complexes is demonstrated using both capillary types, while the polyacrylamide neutral-coated capillary showed better reproducibility and higher efficiency for more complex samples. The platform was then evaluated for the determination of monoclonal antibody aggregation and for analysis of proteomes of limited complexity using a ribosomal isolate from E. coli. Native CZE-MS, using accurate single stage and tandem-MS measurements, enabled identification of proteoforms and non-covalent complexes at femtomole levels. This study demonstrates that native CZE-MS can serve as an orthogonal and complementary technique to conventional native MS methodologies with the advantages of low sample consumption, minimal sample processing and losses, and high throughput and sensitivity. This study presents a novel platform for analysis of ribosomes and other macromolecular complexes and organelles, with the potential for discovery of novel structural features defining cellular phenotypes (e.g., specialized ribosomes). [Figure not available: see fulltext.

  17. Botulinum toxin in parkinsonism: The when, how, and which for botulinum toxin injections.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cardoso, Francisco

    2018-06-01

    The aim of this article is to provide a review of the use of injections of botulinum toxin in the management of selected symptoms and signs of Parkinson's disease and other forms of parkinsonism. Sialorrhea is defined as inability to control oral secretions, resulting in excessive saliva in the oropharynx. There is a high level of evidence for the treatment of sialorrhea in parkinsonism with injections of different forms of botulinum toxin type A as well as botulinum toxin type B. Tremor can be improved by the use of botulinum toxin injections but improved tremor control often leads to concomitant motor weakness, limiting its use. Levodopa induced dyskinesias are difficult to treat with botulinum toxin injections because of their variable frequency and direction. Apraxia of eyelid opening, a sign more commonly seen in progressive supranuclear palsy and other tauopathies, often improves after botulinum toxin injections. Recent data suggest that regardless of the underlying mechanism, pain in parkinsonism can be alleviated by botulinum toxin injections. Finally, freezing of gait, camptocormia and Pisa syndrome in parkinsonism almost invariably fail to respond to botulinum toxin injections. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  18. Perfringolysin O: The Underrated Clostridium perfringens Toxin?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Verherstraeten, Stefanie; Goossens, Evy; Valgaeren, Bonnie; Pardon, Bart; Timbermont, Leen; Haesebrouck, Freddy; Ducatelle, Richard; Deprez, Piet; Wade, Kristin R; Tweten, Rodney; Van Immerseel, Filip

    2015-05-14

    The anaerobic bacterium Clostridium perfringens expresses multiple toxins that promote disease development in both humans and animals. One such toxin is perfringolysin O (PFO, classically referred to as θ toxin), a pore-forming cholesterol-dependent cytolysin (CDC). PFO is secreted as a water-soluble monomer that recognizes and binds membranes via cholesterol. Membrane-bound monomers undergo structural changes that culminate in the formation of an oligomerized prepore complex on the membrane surface. The prepore then undergoes conversion into the bilayer-spanning pore measuring approximately 250-300 Å in diameter. PFO is expressed in nearly all identified C. perfringens strains and harbors interesting traits that suggest a potential undefined role for PFO in disease development. Research has demonstrated a role for PFO in gas gangrene progression and bovine necrohemorrhagic enteritis, but there is limited data available to determine if PFO also functions in additional disease presentations caused by C. perfringens. This review summarizes the known structural and functional characteristics of PFO, while highlighting recent insights into the potential contributions of PFO to disease pathogenesis.

  19. Perfringolysin O: The Underrated Clostridium perfringens Toxin?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stefanie Verherstraeten

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available The anaerobic bacterium Clostridium perfringens expresses multiple toxins that promote disease development in both humans and animals. One such toxin is perfringolysin O (PFO, classically referred to as θ toxin, a pore-forming cholesterol-dependent cytolysin (CDC. PFO is secreted as a water-soluble monomer that recognizes and binds membranes via cholesterol. Membrane-bound monomers undergo structural changes that culminate in the formation of an oligomerized prepore complex on the membrane surface. The prepore then undergoes conversion into the bilayer-spanning pore measuring approximately 250–300 Å in diameter. PFO is expressed in nearly all identified C. perfringens strains and harbors interesting traits that suggest a potential undefined role for PFO in disease development. Research has demonstrated a role for PFO in gas gangrene progression and bovine necrohemorrhagic enteritis, but there is limited data available to determine if PFO also functions in additional disease presentations caused by C. perfringens. This review summarizes the known structural and functional characteristics of PFO, while highlighting recent insights into the potential contributions of PFO to disease pathogenesis.

  20. Supervised maximum-likelihood weighting of composite protein networks for complex prediction

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yong Chern Han

    2012-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Protein complexes participate in many important cellular functions, so finding the set of existent complexes is essential for understanding the organization and regulation of processes in the cell. With the availability of large amounts of high-throughput protein-protein interaction (PPI data, many algorithms have been proposed to discover protein complexes from PPI networks. However, such approaches are hindered by the high rate of noise in high-throughput PPI data, including spurious and missing interactions. Furthermore, many transient interactions are detected between proteins that are not from the same complex, while not all proteins from the same complex may actually interact. As a result, predicted complexes often do not match true complexes well, and many true complexes go undetected. Results We address these challenges by integrating PPI data with other heterogeneous data sources to construct a composite protein network, and using a supervised maximum-likelihood approach to weight each edge based on its posterior probability of belonging to a complex. We then use six different clustering algorithms, and an aggregative clustering strategy, to discover complexes in the weighted network. We test our method on Saccharomyces cerevisiae and Homo sapiens, and show that complex discovery is improved: compared to previously proposed supervised and unsupervised weighting approaches, our method recalls more known complexes, achieves higher precision at all recall levels, and generates novel complexes of greater functional similarity. Furthermore, our maximum-likelihood approach allows learned parameters to be used to visualize and evaluate the evidence of novel predictions, aiding human judgment of their credibility. Conclusions Our approach integrates multiple data sources with supervised learning to create a weighted composite protein network, and uses six clustering algorithms with an aggregative clustering strategy to

  1. Evidence for the robustness of protein complexes to inter-species hybridization.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jean-Baptiste Leducq

    Full Text Available Despite the tremendous efforts devoted to the identification of genetic incompatibilities underlying hybrid sterility and inviability, little is known about the effect of inter-species hybridization at the protein interactome level. Here, we develop a screening platform for the comparison of protein-protein interactions (PPIs among closely related species and their hybrids. We examine in vivo the architecture of protein complexes in two yeast species (Saccharomyces cerevisiae and Saccharomyces kudriavzevii that diverged 5-20 million years ago and in their F1 hybrids. We focus on 24 proteins of two large complexes: the RNA polymerase II and the nuclear pore complex (NPC, which show contrasting patterns of molecular evolution. We found that, with the exception of one PPI in the NPC sub-complex, PPIs were highly conserved between species, regardless of protein divergence. Unexpectedly, we found that the architecture of the complexes in F1 hybrids could not be distinguished from that of the parental species. Our results suggest that the conservation of PPIs in hybrids likely results from the slow evolution taking place on the very few protein residues involved in the interaction or that protein complexes are inherently robust and may accommodate protein divergence up to the level that is observed among closely related species.

  2. Laboratory and Clinical features of EIA Toxin-positive and EIA Toxin-negative Community-acquired Clostridium difficile Infection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Patel, Hiren; Randhawa, Jeewanjot; Nanavati, Sushant; Marton, L Randy; Baddoura, Walid J; DeBari, Vincent A

    2015-01-01

    Studies have described the clinical course of patients with Clostridium difficile infection (CDI) with positive enzyme immunoassay (EIA) for toxins A and B. Limited information is available for the patients with negative EIA but positive for the toxin B gene (TcdB) by the PCR. The aim of our study is to determine if there are any differences that exist among the clinical and laboratory parameters in the patients tested to be positive by EIA for toxin and those who were negative. This is a retrospective cohort study conducted in a 700-bed teaching hospital. We reviewed charts of the patients with presumptive CDI between January 2006 and July 2013. We divided these patients into two groups, EIA-positive and EIA-negative, based on result of EIA for toxins A and B and the requirement for a positive PCR analysis of the TcdB gene. The EIA-positive group had significantly higher white blood cell counts (p<0.001), with a significantly greater percentage of bands (p<0.0001). Albumin and total protein both exhibit significantly (p<0.0001, both comparisons) lower values in the EIA-positive group. Among clinical findings, the EIA-positive group had significantly longer length of hospital stay (p=0.010). These data suggest that an infection with an EIA-negative strain of C. difficile presents laboratory markers closer to those of healthy subjects and clinical features suggesting considerably less severe than infection with EIA-positive C. difficile. © 2015 by the Association of Clinical Scientists, Inc.

  3. Polyamine toxins

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Strømgaard, Kristian; Jensen, Lars S; Vogensen, Stine B

    2005-01-01

    Polyamine toxins, isolated from spiders and wasps, have been used as pharmacological tools for the study of ionotropic receptors, but their use have so far been hampered by their lack of selectivity. In this mini-review, we describe how careful synthetic modification of native polyamine toxins ha...

  4. Diversification of Type VI Secretion System Toxins Reveals Ancient Antagonism among Bee Gut Microbes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Margaret I. Steele

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available Microbial communities are shaped by interactions among their constituent members. Some Gram-negative bacteria employ type VI secretion systems (T6SSs to inject protein toxins into neighboring cells. These interactions have been theorized to affect the composition of host-associated microbiomes, but the role of T6SSs in the evolution of gut communities is not well understood. We report the discovery of two T6SSs and numerous T6SS-associated Rhs toxins within the gut bacteria of honey bees and bumble bees. We sequenced the genomes of 28 strains of Snodgrassella alvi, a characteristic bee gut microbe, and found tremendous variability in their Rhs toxin complements: altogether, these strains appear to encode hundreds of unique toxins. Some toxins are shared with Gilliamella apicola, a coresident gut symbiont, implicating horizontal gene transfer as a source of toxin diversity in the bee gut. We use data from a transposon mutagenesis screen to identify toxins with antibacterial function in the bee gut and validate the function and specificity of a subset of these toxin and immunity genes in Escherichia coli. Using transcriptome sequencing, we demonstrate that S. alvi T6SSs and associated toxins are upregulated in the gut environment. We find that S. alvi Rhs loci have a conserved architecture, consistent with the C-terminal displacement model of toxin diversification, with Rhs toxins, toxin fragments, and cognate immunity genes that are expressed and confer strong fitness effects in vivo. Our findings of T6SS activity and Rhs toxin diversity suggest that T6SS-mediated competition may be an important driver of coevolution within the bee gut microbiota.

  5. Rotavirus 2/6 Viruslike Particles Administered Intranasally with Cholera Toxin, Escherichia coli Heat-Labile Toxin (LT), and LT-R192G Induce Protection from Rotavirus Challenge

    OpenAIRE

    O’Neal, Christine M.; Clements, John D.; Estes, Mary K.; Conner, Margaret E.

    1998-01-01

    We have shown that rotavirus 2/6 viruslike particles composed of proteins VP2 and VP6 (2/6-VLPs) administered to mice intranasally with cholera toxin (CT) induced protection from rotavirus challenge, as measured by virus shedding. Since it is unclear if CT will be approved for human use, we evaluated the adjuvanticity of Escherichia coli heat-labile toxin (LT) and LT-R192G. Mice were inoculated intranasally with 10 μg of 2/6-VLPs combined with CT, LT, or LT-R192G. All three adjuvants induced ...

  6. Higher cytotoxicity of divalent antibody-toxins than monovalent antibody-toxins

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Won, JaeSeon; Nam, PilWon; Lee, YongChan; Choe, MuHyeon

    2009-01-01

    Recombinant antibody-toxins are constructed via the fusion of a 'carcinoma-specific' antibody fragment to a toxin. Due to the high affinity and high selectivity of the antibody fragments, antibody-toxins can bind to surface antigens on cancer cells and kill them without harming normal cells [L.H. Pai, J.K. Batra, D.J. FitzGerald, M.C. Willingham, I. Pastan, Anti-tumor activities of immunotoxins made of monoclonal antibody B3 and various forms of Pseudomonas exotoxin, Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA 88 (1991) 3358-3362]. In this study, we constructed the antibody-toxin, Fab-SWn-PE38, with SWn (n = 3, 6, 9) sequences containing n-time repeated (G 4 S) between the Fab fragment and PE38 (38 kDa truncated form of Pseudomonas exotoxin A). The SWn sequence also harbored one cysteine residue that could form a disulfide bridge between two Fab-SWn-PE38 monomers. We assessed the cytotoxicity of the monovalent (Fab-SWn-PE38), and divalent ([Fab-SWn-PE38] 2 ) antibody-toxins. The cytotoxicity of the dimer against the CRL1739 cell line was approximately 18.8-fold higher than that of the monomer on the ng/ml scale, which was approximately 37.6-fold higher on the pM scale. These results strongly indicate that divalency provides higher cytotoxicity for an antibody-toxin.

  7. Pathogenesis of Shigella diarrhea: rabbit intestinal cell microvillus membrane binding site for Shigella toxin

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Fuchs, G.; Mobassaleh, M.; Donohue-Rolfe, A.; Montgomery, R.K.; Grand, R.J.; Keusch, G.T.

    1986-01-01

    This study examined the binding of purified 125 I-labeled shigella toxin to rabbit jejunal microvillus membranes (MVMs). Toxin binding was concentration dependent, saturable, reversible, and specifically inhibited by unlabeled toxin. The calculated number of toxin molecules bound at 4 0 C was 7.9 X 10(10) (3 X 10(10) to 2 X 10(11))/micrograms of MVM protein or 1.2 X 10(6) per enterocyte. Scatchard analysis showed the binding site to be of a single class with an equilibrium association constant, K, of 4.7 X 10(9) M-1 at 4 0 C. Binding was inversely related to the temperature of incubation. A total of 80% of the labeled toxin binding at 4 0 C dissociated from MVM when the temperature was raised to 37 0 C, but reassociated when the temperature was again brought to 4 0 C. There was no structural or functional change of MVM due to toxin as monitored by electron microscopy or assay of MVM sucrase activity. These studies demonstrate a specific binding site for shigella toxin on rabbit MVMs. The physiological relevance of this receptor remains to be determined

  8. Discovery of a distinct superfamily of Kunitz-type toxin (KTT from tarantulas.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chun-Hua Yuan

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Kuntiz-type toxins (KTTs have been found in the venom of animals such as snake, cone snail and sea anemone. The main ancestral function of Kunitz-type proteins was the inhibition of a diverse array of serine proteases, while toxic activities (such as ion-channel blocking were developed under a variety of Darwinian selection pressures. How new functions were grafted onto an old protein scaffold and what effect Darwinian selection pressures had on KTT evolution remains a puzzle. PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Here we report the presence of a new superfamily of ktts in spiders (TARANTULAS: Ornithoctonus huwena and Ornithoctonus hainana, which share low sequence similarity to known KTTs and is clustered in a distinct clade in the phylogenetic tree of KTT evolution. The representative molecule of spider KTTs, HWTX-XI, purified from the venom of O. huwena, is a bi-functional protein which is a very potent trypsin inhibitor (about 30-fold more strong than BPTI as well as a weak Kv1.1 potassium channel blocker. Structural analysis of HWTX-XI in 3-D by NMR together with comparative function analysis of 18 expressed mutants of this toxin revealed two separate sites, corresponding to these two activities, located on the two ends of the cone-shape molecule of HWTX-XI. Comparison of non-synonymous/synonymous mutation ratios (omega for each site in spider and snake KTTs, as well as PBTI like body Kunitz proteins revealed high Darwinian selection pressure on the binding sites for Kv channels and serine proteases in snake, while only on the proteases in spider and none detected in body proteins, suggesting different rates and patterns of evolution among them. The results also revealed a series of key events in the history of spider KTT evolution, including the formation of a novel KTT family (named sub-Kuntiz-type toxins derived from the ancestral native KTTs with the loss of the second disulfide bridge accompanied by several dramatic sequence modifications

  9. Computational and biological characterization of fusion proteins of two insecticidal proteins for control of insect pests.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Javaid, Shaista; Naz, Sehrish; Amin, Imran; Jander, Georg; Ul-Haq, Zaheer; Mansoor, Shahid

    2018-03-19

    Sucking pests pose a serious agricultural challenge, as available transgenic technologies such as Bacillus thuringiensis crystal toxins (Bt) are not effective against them. One approach is to produce fusion protein toxins for the control of these pests. Two protein toxins, Hvt (ω-atracotoxin from Hadronyche versuta) and onion leaf lectin, were translationally fused to evaluate the negative effects of fusion proteins on Phenacoccus solenopsis (mealybug), a phloem-feeding insect pest. Hvt was cloned both N-terminally (HL) and then C-terminally (LH) in the fusion protein constructs, which were expressed transiently in Nicotiana tabacum using a Potato Virus X (PVX) vector. The HL fusion protein was found to be more effective against P. solenopsis, with an 83% mortality rate, as compared to the LH protein, which caused 65% mortality. Hvt and lectin alone caused 42% and 45%, respectively, under the same conditions. Computational studies of both fusion proteins showed that the HL protein is more stable than the LH protein. Together, these results demonstrate that translational fusion of two insecticidal proteins improved the insecticidal activity relative to each protein individually and could be expressed in transgenic plants for effective control of sucking pests.

  10. Comprehensive analysis of gene expression profiles of the beet armyworm Spodoptera exigua larvae challenged with Bacillus thuringiensis Vip3Aa toxin.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yolanda Bel

    Full Text Available Host-pathogen interactions result in complex relationship, many aspects of which are not completely understood. Vip proteins, which are Bacillus thuringensis (Bt insecticidal toxins produced during the vegetative stage, are selectively effective against specific insect pests. This new group of Bt proteins represents an interesting alternative to the classical Bt Cry toxins because current data suggests that they do not share the same mode of action. We have designed and developed a genome-wide microarray for the beet armyworm Spodoptera exigua, a serious lepidopteran pest of many agricultural crops, and used it to better understand how lepidopteran larvae respond to the treatment with the insecticidal protein Vip3Aa. With this approach, the goal of our study was to evaluate the changes in gene expression levels caused by treatment with sublethal doses of Vip3Aa (causing 99% growth inhibition at 8 and 24 h after feeding. Results indicated that the toxin provoked a wide transcriptional response, with 19% of the microarray unigenes responding significantly to treatment. The number of up- and down-regulated unigenes was very similar. The number of genes whose expression was regulated at 8 h was similar to the number of genes whose expression was regulated after 24 h of treatment. The up-regulated sequences were enriched for genes involved in innate immune response and in pathogen response such as antimicrobial peptides (AMPs and repat genes. The down-regulated sequences were mainly unigenes with homology to genes involved in metabolism. Genes related to the mode of action of Bt Cry proteins were found, in general, to be slightly overexpressed. The present study is the first genome-wide analysis of the response of lepidopteran insects to Vip3Aa intoxication. An insight into the molecular mechanisms and components related to Vip intoxication will allow designing of more effective management strategies for pest control.

  11. Sequence-specific capture of protein-DNA complexes for mass spectrometric protein identification.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cheng-Hsien Wu

    Full Text Available The regulation of gene transcription is fundamental to the existence of complex multicellular organisms such as humans. Although it is widely recognized that much of gene regulation is controlled by gene-specific protein-DNA interactions, there presently exists little in the way of tools to identify proteins that interact with the genome at locations of interest. We have developed a novel strategy to address this problem, which we refer to as GENECAPP, for Global ExoNuclease-based Enrichment of Chromatin-Associated Proteins for Proteomics. In this approach, formaldehyde cross-linking is employed to covalently link DNA to its associated proteins; subsequent fragmentation of the DNA, followed by exonuclease digestion, produces a single-stranded region of the DNA that enables sequence-specific hybridization capture of the protein-DNA complex on a solid support. Mass spectrometric (MS analysis of the captured proteins is then used for their identification and/or quantification. We show here the development and optimization of GENECAPP for an in vitro model system, comprised of the murine insulin-like growth factor-binding protein 1 (IGFBP1 promoter region and FoxO1, a member of the forkhead rhabdomyosarcoma (FoxO subfamily of transcription factors, which binds specifically to the IGFBP1 promoter. This novel strategy provides a powerful tool for studies of protein-DNA and protein-protein interactions.

  12. Possible mistranslation of Shiga toxin from pathogenic Escherichia coli as measured by MALDI-TOF and Orbitrap mass spectrometry

    Science.gov (United States)

    RATIONALE: Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli (STEC) are often subjected to DNA damaging antibiotics during culturing in order to elicit the bacterial SOS response and up-regulation of bacteriophage-encoded proteins including Shiga toxin (Stx). However, such antibiotic exposure and stress may al...

  13. Role of nifedipine-sensitive sympathetic vasoconstriction in maintenance of high blood pressure in spontaneously hypertensive rats: effect of Gi-protein inactivation by pertussis toxin

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Pintérová, Mária; Karen, Petr; Kuneš, Jaroslav; Zicha, Josef

    2010-01-01

    Roč. 28, č. 5 (2010), s. 969-978 ISSN 0263-6352 R&D Projects: GA MŠk(CZ) 1M0510; GA ČR(CZ) GA305/08/0139; GA AV ČR(CZ) IAA500110902 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z50110509 Keywords : calcium channels * inhibitory G proteins * pertussis toxin Subject RIV: FA - Cardiovascular Diseases incl. Cardiotharic Surgery Impact factor: 3.980, year: 2010

  14. A Bacillus megaterium System for the Production of Recombinant Proteins and Protein Complexes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Biedendieck, Rebekka

    2016-01-01

    For many years the Gram-positive bacterium Bacillus megaterium has been used for the production and secretion of recombinant proteins. For this purpose it was systematically optimized. Plasmids with different inducible promoter systems, with different compatible origins, with small tags for protein purification and with various specific signals for protein secretion were combined with genetically improved host strains. Finally, the development of appropriate cultivation conditions for the production strains established this organism as a bacterial cell factory even for large proteins. Along with the overproduction of individual proteins the organism is now also used for the simultaneous coproduction of up to 14 recombinant proteins, multiple subsequently interacting or forming protein complexes. Some of these recombinant strains are successfully used for bioconversion or the biosynthesis of valuable components including vitamins. The titers in the g per liter scale for the intra- and extracellular recombinant protein production prove the high potential of B. megaterium for industrial applications. It is currently further enhanced for the production of recombinant proteins and multi-subunit protein complexes using directed genetic engineering approaches based on transcriptome, proteome, metabolome and fluxome data.

  15. Protein Complex Production from the Drug Discovery Standpoint.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moarefi, Ismail

    2016-01-01

    Small molecule drug discovery critically depends on the availability of meaningful in vitro assays to guide medicinal chemistry programs that are aimed at optimizing drug potency and selectivity. As it becomes increasingly evident, most disease relevant drug targets do not act as a single protein. In the body, they are instead generally found in complex with protein cofactors that are highly relevant for their correct function and regulation. This review highlights selected examples of the increasing trend to use biologically relevant protein complexes for rational drug discovery to reduce costly late phase attritions due to lack of efficacy or toxicity.

  16. Operon Gene Order Is Optimized for Ordered Protein Complex Assembly

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wells, Jonathan N.; Bergendahl, L. Therese; Marsh, Joseph A.

    2016-01-01

    Summary The assembly of heteromeric protein complexes is an inherently stochastic process in which multiple genes are expressed separately into proteins, which must then somehow find each other within the cell. Here, we considered one of the ways by which prokaryotic organisms have attempted to maximize the efficiency of protein complex assembly: the organization of subunit-encoding genes into operons. Using structure-based assembly predictions, we show that operon gene order has been optimized to match the order in which protein subunits assemble. Exceptions to this are almost entirely highly expressed proteins for which assembly is less stochastic and for which precisely ordered translation offers less benefit. Overall, these results show that ordered protein complex assembly pathways are of significant biological importance and represent a major evolutionary constraint on operon gene organization. PMID:26804901

  17. UO{sub 2}{sup 2+}/protein complexation sites screening

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Guilbaud, P.; Pible, O

    2004-07-01

    Uranium(VI) is likely to make strong coordination with some proteins in the plasma and in targeted cells. In the frame of a nuclear toxicology program, a biochemical strategy has been developed to identify these targets in complex biological media. The present work focuses on an approach based on the screening of 3D protein structures in order to identify proteins able to bind UO{sub 2}{sup 2+} and the corresponding complexation sites in these proteins. Our preliminary results show that indeed a few proteins display a high affinity to uranyl salt. The site of interaction may be mapped using molecular modeling, providing coherent results with the biochemical data. (authors)

  18. Autoproteolytic Activation of Bacterial Toxins

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Aimee Shen

    2010-05-01

    Full Text Available Protease domains within toxins typically act as the primary effector domain within target cells. By contrast, the primary function of the cysteine protease domain (CPD in Multifunctional Autoprocessing RTX-like (MARTX and Clostridium sp. glucosylating toxin families is to proteolytically cleave the toxin and release its cognate effector domains. The CPD becomes activated upon binding to the eukaryotic-specific small molecule, inositol hexakisphosphate (InsP6, which is found abundantly in the eukaryotic cytosol. This property allows the CPD to spatially and temporally regulate toxin activation, making it a prime candidate for developing anti-toxin therapeutics. In this review, we summarize recent findings related to defining the regulation of toxin function by the CPD and the development of inhibitors to prevent CPD-mediated activation of bacterial toxins.

  19. Toxin production in Dinophysis and the fate of these toxins in marine mussels

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nielsen, Lasse Tor

    Diarrhetic shellfish poisoning (DSP) poses a considerable threat to food safety and to the economy of shellfish fishers and farmers in many parts of the world. Thousands of DSP intoxications have been reported, and bivalve harvesting can sometimes be closed down several months in a row. The toxins....... acuta. I grew the two species in laboratory cultures at different irradiances (7-130 μmol photons m-2 s-1) and with different food availability. The results showed that irradiance had no effects on toxin profiles, and only limited effects of the cellular toxin contents. Rather, toxin production rates...... are primarily produced by the marine mixotrophic dinoflagellates Dinophysis spp., known to occur in most parts of the world. Dinophysis can, along with other planktonic organisms, be consumed by filter-feeding bivalves, and thus the toxins can accumulate. Dinophysis can produce the three toxin groups, okadaic...

  20. Effects of ionizing radiations on DNA-protein complexes

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gillard, N.

    2005-11-01

    The radio-induced destruction of DNA-protein complexes may have serious consequences for systems implicated in important cellular functions. The first system which has been studied is the lactose operon system, that regulates gene expression in Escherichia coli. First of all, the repressor-operator complex is destroyed after irradiation of the complex or of the protein alone. The damaging of the domain of repressor binding to DNA (headpiece) has been demonstrated and studied from the point of view of peptide chain integrity, conformation and amino acids damages. Secondly, dysfunctions of the in vitro induction of an irradiated repressor-unirradiated DNA complex have been observed. These perturbations, due to a decrease of the number of inducer binding sites, are correlated to the damaging of tryptophan residues. Moreover, the inducer protects the repressor when they are irradiated together, both by acting as a scavenger in the bulk, and by the masking of its binding site on the protein. The second studied system is formed by Fpg (for Formamido pyrimidine glycosylase), a DNA repair protein and a DNA with an oxidative lesion. The results show that irradiation disturbs the repair both by decreasing its efficiency of DNA lesion recognition and binding, and by altering its enzymatic activity. (author)

  1. Gcn4-Mediator Specificity Is Mediated by a Large and Dynamic Fuzzy Protein-Protein Complex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tuttle, Lisa M; Pacheco, Derek; Warfield, Linda; Luo, Jie; Ranish, Jeff; Hahn, Steven; Klevit, Rachel E

    2018-03-20

    Transcription activation domains (ADs) are inherently disordered proteins that often target multiple coactivator complexes, but the specificity of these interactions is not understood. Efficient transcription activation by yeast Gcn4 requires its tandem ADs and four activator-binding domains (ABDs) on its target, the Mediator subunit Med15. Multiple ABDs are a common feature of coactivator complexes. We find that the large Gcn4-Med15 complex is heterogeneous and contains nearly all possible AD-ABD interactions. Gcn4-Med15 forms via a dynamic fuzzy protein-protein interface, where ADs bind the ABDs in multiple orientations via hydrophobic regions that gain helicity. This combinatorial mechanism allows individual low-affinity and specificity interactions to generate a biologically functional, specific, and higher affinity complex despite lacking a defined protein-protein interface. This binding strategy is likely representative of many activators that target multiple coactivators, as it allows great flexibility in combinations of activators that can cooperate to regulate genes with variable coactivator requirements. Copyright © 2018 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  2. Carotenoid-protein complexes and their stability towards oxygen and radiation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ramakrishnan, T.V.; Francis, F.J.

    1980-01-01

    Carotenoid-protein complexes isolated from fresh mangoes were found to be more stable to oxygen and radiation when dissolved in water as compared with β-carotene in petroleum ether. Part of the pigment could be released from the complex by gamma irradiation. Observations on the stability of the carotenoid (98% β-carotene) in the complex indicated that the pigment is either associated with the lipid prosthetic group of the protein or loosely attached to the protein by weak hydrophobic bonds. (author)

  3. Using Common Spatial Distributions of Atoms to Relate Functionally Divergent Influenza Virus N10 and N11 Protein Structures to Functionally Characterized Neuraminidase Structures, Toxin Cell Entry Domains, and Non-Influenza Virus Cell Entry Domains

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weininger, Arthur; Weininger, Susan

    2015-01-01

    The ability to identify the functional correlates of structural and sequence variation in proteins is a critical capability. We related structures of influenza A N10 and N11 proteins that have no established function to structures of proteins with known function by identifying spatially conserved atoms. We identified atoms with common distributed spatial occupancy in PDB structures of N10 protein, N11 protein, an influenza A neuraminidase, an influenza B neuraminidase, and a bacterial neuraminidase. By superposing these spatially conserved atoms, we aligned the structures and associated molecules. We report spatially and sequence invariant residues in the aligned structures. Spatially invariant residues in the N6 and influenza B neuraminidase active sites were found in previously unidentified spatially equivalent sites in the N10 and N11 proteins. We found the corresponding secondary and tertiary structures of the aligned proteins to be largely identical despite significant sequence divergence. We found structural precedent in known non-neuraminidase structures for residues exhibiting structural and sequence divergence in the aligned structures. In N10 protein, we identified staphylococcal enterotoxin I-like domains. In N11 protein, we identified hepatitis E E2S-like domains, SARS spike protein-like domains, and toxin components shared by alpha-bungarotoxin, staphylococcal enterotoxin I, anthrax lethal factor, clostridium botulinum neurotoxin, and clostridium tetanus toxin. The presence of active site components common to the N6, influenza B, and S. pneumoniae neuraminidases in the N10 and N11 proteins, combined with the absence of apparent neuraminidase function, suggests that the role of neuraminidases in H17N10 and H18N11 emerging influenza A viruses may have changed. The presentation of E2S-like, SARS spike protein-like, or toxin-like domains by the N10 and N11 proteins in these emerging viruses may indicate that H17N10 and H18N11 sialidase-facilitated cell

  4. A novel Hsp70 inhibitor prevents cell intoxication with the actin ADP-ribosylating Clostridium perfringens iota toxin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ernst, Katharina; Liebscher, Markus; Mathea, Sebastian; Granzhan, Anton; Schmid, Johannes; Popoff, Michel R.; Ihmels, Heiko; Barth, Holger; Schiene-Fischer, Cordelia

    2016-01-01

    Hsp70 family proteins are folding helper proteins involved in a wide variety of cellular pathways. Members of this family interact with key factors in signal transduction, transcription, cell-cycle control, and stress response. Here, we developed the first Hsp70 low molecular weight inhibitor specifically targeting the peptide binding site of human Hsp70. After demonstrating that the inhibitor modulates the Hsp70 function in the cell, we used the inhibitor to show for the first time that the stress-inducible chaperone Hsp70 functions as molecular component for entry of a bacterial protein toxin into mammalian cells. Pharmacological inhibition of Hsp70 protected cells from intoxication with the binary actin ADP-ribosylating iota toxin from Clostridium perfringens, the prototype of a family of enterotoxins from pathogenic Clostridia and inhibited translocation of its enzyme component across cell membranes into the cytosol. This finding offers a starting point for novel therapeutic strategies against certain bacterial toxins. PMID:26839186

  5. Alternaria Toxins: Potential Virulence Factors and Genes Related to Pathogenesis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mukesh Meena

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available Alternaria is an important fungus to study due to their different life style from saprophytes to endophytes and a very successful fungal pathogen that causes diseases to a number of economically important crops. Alternaria species have been well-characterized for the production of different host-specific toxins (HSTs and non-host specific toxins (nHSTs which depend upon their physiological and morphological stages. The pathogenicity of Alternaria species depends on host susceptibility or resistance as well as quantitative production of HSTs and nHSTs. These toxins are chemically low molecular weight secondary metabolites (SMs. The effects of toxins are mainly on different parts of cells like mitochondria, chloroplast, plasma membrane, Golgi complex, nucleus, etc. Alternaria species produce several nHSTs such as brefeldin A, tenuazonic acid, tentoxin, and zinniol. HSTs that act in very low concentrations affect only certain plant varieties or genotype and play a role in determining the host range of specificity of plant pathogens. The commonly known HSTs are AAL-, AK-, AM-, AF-, ACR-, and ACT-toxins which are named by their host specificity and these toxins are classified into different family groups. The HSTs are differentiated on the basis of bio-statistical and other molecular analyses. All these toxins have different mode of action, biochemical reactions and signaling mechanisms to cause diseases. Different species of Alternaria produced toxins which reveal its biochemical and genetic effects on itself as well as on its host cells tissues. The genes responsible for the production of HSTs are found on the conditionally dispensable chromosomes (CDCs which have been well characterized. Different bio-statistical methods like basic local alignment search tool (BLAST data analysis used for the annotation of gene prediction, pathogenicity-related genes may provide surprising knowledge in present and future.

  6. Clostridium difficile Recombinant Toxin A Repeating Units as a Carrier Protein for Conjugate Vaccines: Studies of Pneumococcal Type 14, Escherichia coli K1, and Shigella flexneri Type 2a Polysaccharides in Mice

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pavliakova, Danka; Moncrief, J. Scott; Lyerly, David M.; Schiffman, Gerald; Bryla, Dolores A.; Robbins, John B.; Schneerson, Rachel

    2000-01-01

    Unlike the native protein, a nontoxic peptide (repeating unit of the native toxin designated rARU) from Clostridium difficile toxin A (CDTA) afforded an antigen that could be bound covalently to the surface polysaccharides of pneumococcus type 14, Shigella flexneri type 2a, and Escherichia coli K1. The yields of these polysaccharide-protein conjugates were significantly increased by prior treatment of rARU with succinic anhydride. Conjugates, prepared with rARU or succinylated (rARUsucc), were administered to mice by a clinically relevant dosage and immunization scheme. All conjugates elicited high levels of serum immunoglobulin G both to the polysaccharides and to CDTA. Conjugate-induced anti-CDTA had neutralizing activity in vitro and protected mice challenged with CDTA, similar to the rARU alone. Conjugates prepared with succinylated rARU, therefore, have potential for serving both as effective carrier proteins for polysaccharides and for preventing enteric disease caused by C. difficile. PMID:10722615

  7. Filaggrin-dependent secretion of sphingomyelinase protects against staphylococcal α-toxin-induced keratinocyte death.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brauweiler, Anne M; Bin, Lianghua; Kim, Byung Eui; Oyoshi, Michiko K; Geha, Raif S; Goleva, Elena; Leung, Donald Y M

    2013-02-01

    The skin of patients with atopic dermatitis (AD) has defects in keratinocyte differentiation, particularly in expression of the epidermal barrier protein filaggrin. AD skin lesions are often exacerbated by Staphylococcus aureus-mediated secretion of the virulence factor α-toxin. It is unknown whether lack of keratinocyte differentiation predisposes to enhanced lethality from staphylococcal toxins. We investigated whether keratinocyte differentiation and filaggrin expression protect against cell death induced by staphylococcal α-toxin. Filaggrin-deficient primary keratinocytes were generated through small interfering RNA gene knockdown. RNA expression was determined by using real-time PCR. Cell death was determined by using the lactate dehydrogenase assay. Keratinocyte cell survival in filaggrin-deficient (ft/ft) mouse skin biopsies was determined based on Keratin 5 staining. α-Toxin heptamer formation and acid sphingomyelinase expression were determined by means of immunoblotting. We found that filaggrin expression, occurring as the result of keratinocyte differentiation, significantly inhibits staphylococcal α-toxin-mediated pathogenicity. Furthermore, filaggrin plays a crucial role in protecting cells by mediating the secretion of sphingomyelinase, an enzyme that reduces the number of α-toxin binding sites on the keratinocyte surface. Finally, we determined that sphingomyelinase enzymatic activity directly prevents α-toxin binding and protects keratinocytes against α-toxin-induced cytotoxicity. The current study introduces the novel concept that S aureus α-toxin preferentially targets and destroys filaggrin-deficient keratinocytes. It also provides a mechanism to explain the increased propensity for S aureus-mediated exacerbation of AD skin disease. Copyright © 2012 American Academy of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology. Published by Mosby, Inc. All rights reserved.

  8. Authentic display of a cholera toxin epitope by chimeric type 1 fimbriae: effects of insert position and host background

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Stentebjerg-Olesen, B; Pallesen, L; Jensen, LB

    1997-01-01

    The potential of the major structural protein of type 1 fimbriae as a display system for heterologous sequences was tested. As a reporter-epitope, a heterologous sequence mimicking a neutralizing epitope of the cholera toxin B chain was inserted, in one or two copies, into four different positions...... in the fimA gene. This was carried out by introduction of new restriction sites by PCR-mediated site-directed mutagenesis of fimA in positions predicted to correspond to optimally surface-located regions of the subunit protein. Subsequently, the synthetic cholera-toxin-encoding DNA segment was inserted....... Several of the chosen positions seemed amenable even for large foreign inserts; the chimeric proteins were exposed on the bacterial surface and the cholera toxin epitope was authentically displayed, i.e. it was recognized on bacteria by specific antiserum. Display of chimeric fimbriae was tested...

  9. Affinity chromatography of tetanus toxin, tetanus toxoid, and botulinum A toxin on synaptosomes, and differentiation of their acceptors

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Habermann, E [Giessen Univ. (Germany, F.R.). Pharmakologisches Inst.

    1976-01-01

    /sup 125/I-labelled tetanus toxin and /sup 125/I-labelled botulinum A neurotoxin are known to be specifically bound to brain synaptosomes. In order to discriminate between active toxin and inactive admixtures present in the starting material or arising during iodination, synaptosome columns were prepared using bromacetylcellulose and/or kieselgur (Celite) as carriers. Both types of columns adsorb the toxins from low ionic strength medium and release them if the pH and ionic strength are raised. Botulinum toxin was eluted with lower ionic strength than tetanus toxin, and could be freed from nontoxic admixtures. Analysis by affinity chromatography disclosed partially toxoided tetanus toxin in both labelled and unlabelled toxin samples. High concentrations of formaldehyde (0.5%) destroyed both toxicity and affinity to the synaptosomes of tetanus toxin. Low concentrations of formaldehyde (0.05%) yielded a derivative of low toxicity which was still, however less firmly, bound to synaptosomes. Tetanus and botulinum toxin differ by their acceptors. Whereas unlabelled botulinum toxin is unable to compete with labelled tetanus toxin, unlabelled tetanus toxin slightly competes with botulinum toxin. Both labelled toxins display anomalous binding behaviour in that they cannot be displaced completely even with a large excess of unlabelled toxin.

  10. Affinity chromatography of tetanus toxin, tetanus toxoid, and botulinum A toxin on synaptosomes, and differentiation of their acceptors

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Habermann, E.

    1976-01-01

    125 I-labelled tetanus toxin and 125 I-labelled botulinum A neurotoxin are known to be specifically bound to brain synaptosomes. In order to discriminate between active toxin and inactive admixtures present in the starting material or arising during iodination, synaptosome columns were prepared using bromacetylcellulose and/or kieselgur (Celite) as carriers. Both types of columns adsorb the toxins from low ionic strength medium and release them if the pH and ionic strength are raised. Botulinum toxin was eluted with lower ionic strength than tetanus toxin, and could be freed from nontoxic admixtures. Analysis by affinity chromatography disclosed partially toxoided tetanus toxin in both labelled and unlabelled toxin samples. High concentrations of formaldehyde (0.5%) destroyed both toxicity and affinity to the synaptosomes of tetanus toxin. Low concentrations of formaldehyde (0.05%) yielded a derivative of low toxicity which was still, however less firmly, bound to synaptosomes. Tetanus and botulinum toxin differ by their acceptors. Whereas unlabelled botulinum toxin is unable to compete with labelled tetanus toxin, unlabelled tetanus toxin slightly competes with botulinum toxin. Both labelled toxins display anomalous binding behaviour in that they cannot be displaced completely even with a large excess of unlabelled toxin. (orig.) [de

  11. Immersion freezing of ice nucleation active protein complexes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    S. Hartmann

    2013-06-01

    Full Text Available Utilising the Leipzig Aerosol Cloud Interaction Simulator (LACIS, the immersion freezing behaviour of droplet ensembles containing monodisperse particles, generated from a Snomax™ solution/suspension, was investigated. Thereto ice fractions were measured in the temperature range between −5 °C to −38 °C. Snomax™ is an industrial product applied for artificial snow production and contains Pseudomonas syringae} bacteria which have long been used as model organism for atmospheric relevant ice nucleation active (INA bacteria. The ice nucleation activity of such bacteria is controlled by INA protein complexes in their outer membrane. In our experiments, ice fractions increased steeply in the temperature range from about −6 °C to about −10 °C and then levelled off at ice fractions smaller than one. The plateau implies that not all examined droplets contained an INA protein complex. Assuming the INA protein complexes to be Poisson distributed over the investigated droplet populations, we developed the CHESS model (stoCHastic modEl of similar and poiSSon distributed ice nuclei which allows for the calculation of ice fractions as function of temperature and time for a given nucleation rate. Matching calculated and measured ice fractions, we determined and parameterised the nucleation rate of INA protein complexes exhibiting class III ice nucleation behaviour. Utilising the CHESS model, together with the determined nucleation rate, we compared predictions from the model to experimental data from the literature and found good agreement. We found that (a the heterogeneous ice nucleation rate expression quantifying the ice nucleation behaviour of the INA protein complex is capable of describing the ice nucleation behaviour observed in various experiments for both, Snomax™ and P. syringae bacteria, (b the ice nucleation rate, and its temperature dependence, seem to be very similar regardless of whether the INA protein complexes inducing ice

  12. Crystal Structure of Botulinum Neurotoxin A2 in Complex with the Human Protein Receptor SV2C Reveals Plasticity in Receptor Binding

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Robert Gustafsson

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available Botulinum neurotoxins (BoNTs are a family of highly dangerous bacterial toxins, with seven major serotypes (BoNT/A-G. Members of BoNTs, BoNT/A1 and BoNT/B1, have been utilized to treat an increasing number of medical conditions. The clinical trials are ongoing for BoNT/A2, another subtype of BoNT/A, which showed promising therapeutic properties. Both BoNT/A1 and BoNT/A2 utilize three isoforms of synaptic vesicle protein SV2 (SV2A, B, and C as their protein receptors. We here present a high resolution (2.0 Å co-crystal structure of the BoNT/A2 receptor-binding domain in complex with the human SV2C luminal domain. The structure is similar to previously reported BoNT/A-SV2C complexes, but a shift of the receptor-binding segment in BoNT/A2 rotates SV2C in two dimensions giving insight into the dynamic behavior of the interaction. Small differences in key residues at the binding interface may influence the binding to different SV2 isoforms, which may contribute to the differences between BoNT/A1 and BoNT/A2 observed in the clinic.

  13. Yessotoxins, a Group of Marine Polyether Toxins: an Overview

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    José J. Fernández

    2008-05-01

    Full Text Available Yessotoxin (YTX is a marine polyether toxin that was first isolated in 1986 from the scallop Patinopecten yessoensis. Subsequently, it was reported that YTX is produced by the dinoflagellates Protoceratium reticulatum, Lingulodinium polyedrum and Gonyaulax spinifera. YTXs have been associated with diarrhetic shellfish poisoning (DSP because they are often simultaneously extracted with DSP toxins, and give positive results when tested in the conventional mouse bioassay for DSP toxins. However, recent evidence suggests that YTXs should be excluded from the DSP toxins group, because unlike okadaic acid (OA and dinophyisistoxin-1 (DTX-1, YTXs do not cause either diarrhea or inhibition of protein phosphatases . In spite of the increasing number of molecular studies focused on the toxicity of YTX, the precise mechanism of action is currently unknown. Since the discovery of YTX, almost forty new analogues isolated from both mussels and dinoflagellates have been characterized by NMR or LC-MS/MS techniques. These studies indicate a wide variability in the profile and the relative abundance of YTXs in both, bivalves and dinoflagellates. This review covers current knowledge on the origin, producer organisms and vectors, chemical structures, metabolism, biosynthetic origin, toxicological properties, potential risks to human health and advances in detection methods of YTXs.

  14. Identification of Essential Proteins Based on a New Combination of Local Interaction Density and Protein Complexes.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jiawei Luo

    Full Text Available Computational approaches aided by computer science have been used to predict essential proteins and are faster than expensive, time-consuming, laborious experimental approaches. However, the performance of such approaches is still poor, making practical applications of computational approaches difficult in some fields. Hence, the development of more suitable and efficient computing methods is necessary for identification of essential proteins.In this paper, we propose a new method for predicting essential proteins in a protein interaction network, local interaction density combined with protein complexes (LIDC, based on statistical analyses of essential proteins and protein complexes. First, we introduce a new local topological centrality, local interaction density (LID, of the yeast PPI network; second, we discuss a new integration strategy for multiple bioinformatics. The LIDC method was then developed through a combination of LID and protein complex information based on our new integration strategy. The purpose of LIDC is discovery of important features of essential proteins with their neighbors in real protein complexes, thereby improving the efficiency of identification.Experimental results based on three different PPI(protein-protein interaction networks of Saccharomyces cerevisiae and Escherichia coli showed that LIDC outperformed classical topological centrality measures and some recent combinational methods. Moreover, when predicting MIPS datasets, the better improvement of performance obtained by LIDC is over all nine reference methods (i.e., DC, BC, NC, LID, PeC, CoEWC, WDC, ION, and UC.LIDC is more effective for the prediction of essential proteins than other recently developed methods.

  15. Perfringolysin O Theta Toxin as a Tool to Monitor the Distribution and Inhomogeneity of Cholesterol in Cellular Membranes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maekawa, Masashi; Yang, Yanbo; Fairn, Gregory D

    2016-03-08

    Cholesterol is an essential structural component of cellular membranes in eukaryotes. Cholesterol in the exofacial leaflet of the plasma membrane is thought to form membrane nanodomains with sphingolipids and specific proteins. Additionally, cholesterol is found in the intracellular membranes of endosomes and has crucial functions in membrane trafficking. Furthermore, cellular cholesterol homeostasis and regulation of de novo synthesis rely on transport via both vesicular and non-vesicular pathways. Thus, the ability to visualize and detect intracellular cholesterol, especially in the plasma membrane, is critical to understanding the complex biology associated with cholesterol and the nanodomains. Perfringolysin O (PFO) theta toxin is one of the toxins secreted by the anaerobic bacteria Clostridium perfringens and this toxin forms pores in the plasma membrane that causes cell lysis. It is well understood that PFO recognizes and binds to cholesterol in the exofacial leaflets of the plasma membrane, and domain 4 of PFO (D4) is sufficient for the binding of cholesterol. Recent studies have taken advantage of this high-affinity cholesterol-binding domain to create a variety of cholesterol biosensors by using a non-toxic PFO or the D4 in isolation. This review highlights the characteristics and usefulness of, and the principal findings related to, these PFO-derived cholesterol biosensors.

  16. Recovering protein-protein and domain-domain interactions from aggregation of IP-MS proteomics of coregulator complexes.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Amin R Mazloom

    2011-12-01

    Full Text Available Coregulator proteins (CoRegs are part of multi-protein complexes that transiently assemble with transcription factors and chromatin modifiers to regulate gene expression. In this study we analyzed data from 3,290 immuno-precipitations (IP followed by mass spectrometry (MS applied to human cell lines aimed at identifying CoRegs complexes. Using the semi-quantitative spectral counts, we scored binary protein-protein and domain-domain associations with several equations. Unlike previous applications, our methods scored prey-prey protein-protein interactions regardless of the baits used. We also predicted domain-domain interactions underlying predicted protein-protein interactions. The quality of predicted protein-protein and domain-domain interactions was evaluated using known binary interactions from the literature, whereas one protein-protein interaction, between STRN and CTTNBP2NL, was validated experimentally; and one domain-domain interaction, between the HEAT domain of PPP2R1A and the Pkinase domain of STK25, was validated using molecular docking simulations. The scoring schemes presented here recovered known, and predicted many new, complexes, protein-protein, and domain-domain interactions. The networks that resulted from the predictions are provided as a web-based interactive application at http://maayanlab.net/HT-IP-MS-2-PPI-DDI/.

  17. The Venom of the Spine-Bellied Sea Snake (Hydrophis curtus): Proteome, Toxin Diversity and Intraspecific Variation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Neale, Vanessa; Sotillo, Javier; Seymour, Jamie E; Wilson, David

    2017-12-12

    The spine-bellied sea snake ( Hydrophis curtus ) is known to cause human deaths, yet its venom composition has not yet been proteomically characterised. An indepth proteomic analysis was performed on H. curtus venom from two different seasons, January and June, corresponding to adults and subadults, respectively. Venoms from adult and subadult H. curtus individuals were compared using reversedphase high-performance liquid chromatography (RP-HPLC), matrix-assisted laser desorption ionisation-time of flight (MALDI-TOF) mass spectrometry and liquid chromatography electrospray ionisation mass spectrometry (LC-ESI-MS) to detect intraspecific variation, and the molecular weight data obtained with ESIMS were used to assess toxin diversity. RPHPLC and LCESIMS/MS were used to characterise the venom proteome and estimate the relative abundances of protein families present. The most abundant protein family in January and June venoms is phospholipase A₂ (PLA₂: January 66.7%; June 54.5%), followed by threefinger toxins (3FTx: January 30.4%; June 40.4%) and a minor component of cysteine-rich secretory proteins (CRISP: January 2.5%; June 5%). Trace amounts of snake venom metalloproteinases (SVMP), C-type lectins and housekeeping and regulatory proteins were also found. Although the complexity of the venom is low by number of families present, each family contained a more diverse set of isoforms than previously reported, a finding that may have implications for the development of next-generation sea snake antivenoms. Intraspecific variability was shown to be minor with one obvious exception of a 14,157-Da protein that was present in some January (adult) venoms, but not at all in June (subadult) venoms. There is also a greater abundance of short-chain neurotoxins in June (subadult) venom compared with January (adult) venom. These differences potentially indicate the presence of seasonal, ontogenetic or sexual variation in H. curtus venom.

  18. Analysis of protein-protein docking decoys using interaction fingerprints: application to the reconstruction of CaM-ligand complexes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Uchikoga Nobuyuki

    2010-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Protein-protein docking for proteins with large conformational changes was analyzed by using interaction fingerprints, one of the scales for measuring similarities among complex structures, utilized especially for searching near-native protein-ligand or protein-protein complex structures. Here, we have proposed a combined method for analyzing protein-protein docking by taking large conformational changes into consideration. This combined method consists of ensemble soft docking with multiple protein structures, refinement of complexes, and cluster analysis using interaction fingerprints and energy profiles. Results To test for the applicability of this combined method, various CaM-ligand complexes were reconstructed from the NMR structures of unbound CaM. For the purpose of reconstruction, we used three known CaM-ligands, namely, the CaM-binding peptides of cyclic nucleotide gateway (CNG, CaM kinase kinase (CaMKK and the plasma membrane Ca2+ ATPase pump (PMCA, and thirty-one structurally diverse CaM conformations. For each ligand, 62000 CaM-ligand complexes were generated in the docking step and the relationship between their energy profiles and structural similarities to the native complex were analyzed using interaction fingerprint and RMSD. Near-native clusters were obtained in the case of CNG and CaMKK. Conclusions The interaction fingerprint method discriminated near-native structures better than the RMSD method in cluster analysis. We showed that a combined method that includes the interaction fingerprint is very useful for protein-protein docking analysis of certain cases.

  19. Biophysical and biochemical strategies to understand membrane binding and pore formation by sticholysins, pore-forming proteins from a sea anemone.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alvarez, Carlos; Ros, Uris; Valle, Aisel; Pedrera, Lohans; Soto, Carmen; Hervis, Yadira P; Cabezas, Sheila; Valiente, Pedro A; Pazos, Fabiola; Lanio, Maria E

    2017-10-01

    Actinoporins constitute a unique class of pore-forming toxins found in sea anemones that are able to bind and oligomerize in membranes, leading to cell swelling, impairment of ionic gradients and, eventually, to cell death. In this review we summarize the knowledge generated from the combination of biochemical and biophysical approaches to the study of sticholysins I and II (Sts, StI/II), two actinoporins largely characterized by the Center of Protein Studies at the University of Havana during the last 20 years. These approaches include strategies for understanding the toxin structure-function relationship, the protein-membrane association process leading to pore formation and the interaction of toxin with cells. The rational combination of experimental and theoretical tools have allowed unraveling, at least partially, of the complex mechanisms involved in toxin-membrane interaction and of the molecular pathways triggered upon this interaction. The study of actinoporins is important not only to gain an understanding of their biological roles in anemone venom but also to investigate basic molecular mechanisms of protein insertion into membranes, protein-lipid interactions and the modulation of protein conformation by lipid binding. A deeper knowledge of the basic molecular mechanisms involved in Sts-cell interaction, as described in this review, will support the current investigations conducted by our group which focus on the design of immunotoxins against tumor cells and antigen-releasing systems to cell cytosol as Sts-based vaccine platforms.

  20. Use of a Yeast tRNase Killer Toxin to Diagnose Kti12 Motifs Required for tRNA Modification by Elongator.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mehlgarten, Constance; Prochaska, Heike; Hammermeister, Alexander; Abdel-Fattah, Wael; Wagner, Melanie; Krutyhołowa, Rościsław; Jun, Sang Eun; Kim, Gyung-Tae; Glatt, Sebastian; Breunig, Karin D; Stark, Michael J R; Schaffrath, Raffael

    2017-09-05

    Saccharomyces cerevisiae cells are killed by zymocin, a tRNase ribotoxin complex from Kluyveromyces lactis , which cleaves anticodons and inhibits protein synthesis. Zymocin's action requires specific chemical modification of uridine bases in the anticodon wobble position (U34) by the Elongator complex (Elp1-Elp6). Hence, loss of anticodon modification in mutants lacking Elongator or related KTI ( K. lactis Toxin Insensitive) genes protects against tRNA cleavage and confers resistance to the toxin. Here, we show that zymocin can be used as a tool to genetically analyse KTI12 , a gene previously shown to code for an Elongator partner protein. From a kti12 mutant pool of zymocin survivors, we identify motifs in Kti12 that are functionally directly coupled to Elongator activity. In addition, shared requirement of U34 modifications for nonsense and missense tRNA suppression ( SUP4 ; SOE1 ) strongly suggests that Kti12 and Elongator cooperate to assure proper tRNA functioning. We show that the Kti12 motifs are conserved in plant ortholog DRL1/ELO4 from Arabidopsis thaliana and seem to be involved in binding of cofactors (e.g., nucleotides, calmodulin). Elongator interaction defects triggered by mutations in these motifs correlate with phenotypes typical for loss of U34 modification. Thus, tRNA modification by Elongator appears to require physical contact with Kti12, and our preliminary data suggest that metabolic signals may affect proper communication between them.

  1. Improving prediction of heterodimeric protein complexes using combination with pairwise kernel.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ruan, Peiying; Hayashida, Morihiro; Akutsu, Tatsuya; Vert, Jean-Philippe

    2018-02-19

    Since many proteins become functional only after they interact with their partner proteins and form protein complexes, it is essential to identify the sets of proteins that form complexes. Therefore, several computational methods have been proposed to predict complexes from the topology and structure of experimental protein-protein interaction (PPI) network. These methods work well to predict complexes involving at least three proteins, but generally fail at identifying complexes involving only two different proteins, called heterodimeric complexes or heterodimers. There is however an urgent need for efficient methods to predict heterodimers, since the majority of known protein complexes are precisely heterodimers. In this paper, we use three promising kernel functions, Min kernel and two pairwise kernels, which are Metric Learning Pairwise Kernel (MLPK) and Tensor Product Pairwise Kernel (TPPK). We also consider the normalization forms of Min kernel. Then, we combine Min kernel or its normalization form and one of the pairwise kernels by plugging. We applied kernels based on PPI, domain, phylogenetic profile, and subcellular localization properties to predicting heterodimers. Then, we evaluate our method by employing C-Support Vector Classification (C-SVC), carrying out 10-fold cross-validation, and calculating the average F-measures. The results suggest that the combination of normalized-Min-kernel and MLPK leads to the best F-measure and improved the performance of our previous work, which had been the best existing method so far. We propose new methods to predict heterodimers, using a machine learning-based approach. We train a support vector machine (SVM) to discriminate interacting vs non-interacting protein pairs, based on informations extracted from PPI, domain, phylogenetic profiles and subcellular localization. We evaluate in detail new kernel functions to encode these data, and report prediction performance that outperforms the state-of-the-art.

  2. Nanoscale Dewetting Transition in Protein Complex Folding

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hua, Lan; Huang, Xuhui; Liu, Pu; Zhou, Ruhong; Berne, Bruce J.

    2011-01-01

    In a previous study, a surprising drying transition was observed to take place inside the nanoscale hydrophobic channel in the tetramer of the protein melittin. The goal of this paper is to determine if there are other protein complexes capable of displaying a dewetting transition during their final stage of folding. We searched the entire protein data bank (PDB) for all possible candidates, including protein tetramers, dimers, and two-domain proteins, and then performed the molecular dynamics (MD) simulations on the top candidates identified by a simple hydrophobic scoring function based on aligned hydrophobic surface areas. Our large scale MD simulations found several more proteins, including three tetramers, six dimers, and two two-domain proteins, which display a nanoscale dewetting transition in their final stage of folding. Even though the scoring function alone is not sufficient (i.e., a high score is necessary but not sufficient) in identifying the dewetting candidates, it does provide useful insights into the features of complex interfaces needed for dewetting. All top candidates have two features in common: (1) large aligned (matched) hydrophobic areas between two corresponding surfaces, and (2) large connected hydrophobic areas on the same surface. We have also studied the effect on dewetting of different water models and different treatments of the long-range electrostatic interactions (cutoff vs PME), and found the dewetting phenomena is fairly robust. This work presents a few proteins other than melittin tetramer for further experimental studies of the role of dewetting in the end stages of protein folding. PMID:17608515

  3. Cry64Ba and Cry64Ca, Two ETX/MTX2-Type Bacillus thuringiensis Insecticidal Proteins Active against Hemipteran Pests.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Yonglei; Wang, Yinglong; Shu, Changlong; Lin, Kejian; Song, Fuping; Bravo, Alejandra; Soberón, Mario; Zhang, Jie

    2018-02-01

    Genetically modified crops that express insecticidal Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt) proteins have become a primary approach for control of lepidopteran (moth) and coleopteran (beetle) pests that feed by chewing the plants. However, the sap-sucking insects (Hemiptera) are not particularly susceptible to Bt toxins. In this study, we describe two Cry toxins (Cry64Ba and Cry64Ca) from Bt strain 1012 that showed toxicity against two important hemipteran rice pests, Laodelphax striatellus and Sogatella furcifera Both of these proteins contain an ETX/MTX2 domain and share common sequence features with the β-pore-forming toxins. Coexpression of cry64Ba and cry64Ca genes in the acrystalliferous Bt strain HD73 - resulted in high insecticidal activity against both hemipteran pests. No toxicity was observed on other pests such as Ostrinia furnacalis , Plutella xylostella , or Colaphellus bowringi Also, no hemolytic activity or toxicity against cancer cells was detected. Binding assays showed specific binding of the Cry64Ba/Cry64Ca toxin complex to brush border membrane vesicles isolated from L. striatellus Cry64Ba and Cry64Ca are Bt Cry toxins highly effective against hemipteran pests and could provide a novel strategy for the environmentally friendly biological control of rice planthoppers in transgenic plants. IMPORTANCE In Asia, rice is an important staple food, whose production is threatened by rice planthoppers. To date, no effective Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt) protein has been shown to have activity against rice planthoppers. We cloned two Bt toxin genes from Bt strain 1012 that showed toxicity against small brown planthoppers ( Laodelphax striatellus ) and white-backed planthoppers ( Sogatella furcifera ). To our knowledge, the proteins encoded by the cry64Ba and cry64Ca genes are the most efficient insecticidal Bt Cry proteins with activity against hemipteran insects reported so far. Cry64Ba and Cry64Ca showed no toxicity against some lepidopteran or coleopteran pests

  4. Determining protein complex connectivity using a probabilistic deletion network derived from quantitative proteomics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sardiu, Mihaela E; Gilmore, Joshua M; Carrozza, Michael J; Li, Bing; Workman, Jerry L; Florens, Laurence; Washburn, Michael P

    2009-10-06

    Protein complexes are key molecular machines executing a variety of essential cellular processes. Despite the availability of genome-wide protein-protein interaction studies, determining the connectivity between proteins within a complex remains a major challenge. Here we demonstrate a method that is able to predict the relationship of proteins within a stable protein complex. We employed a combination of computational approaches and a systematic collection of quantitative proteomics data from wild-type and deletion strain purifications to build a quantitative deletion-interaction network map and subsequently convert the resulting data into an interdependency-interaction model of a complex. We applied this approach to a data set generated from components of the Saccharomyces cerevisiae Rpd3 histone deacetylase complexes, which consists of two distinct small and large complexes that are held together by a module consisting of Rpd3, Sin3 and Ume1. The resulting representation reveals new protein-protein interactions and new submodule relationships, providing novel information for mapping the functional organization of a complex.

  5. On the interconnection of stable protein complexes: inter-complex hubs and their conservation in Saccharomyces cerevisiae and Homo sapiens networks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guerra, Concettina

    2015-01-01

    Protein complexes are key molecular entities that perform a variety of essential cellular functions. The connectivity of proteins within a complex has been widely investigated with both experimental and computational techniques. We developed a computational approach to identify and characterise proteins that play a role in interconnecting complexes. We computed a measure of inter-complex centrality, the crossroad index, based on disjoint paths connecting proteins in distinct complexes and identified inter-complex hubs as proteins with a high value of the crossroad index. We applied the approach to a set of stable complexes in Saccharomyces cerevisiae and in Homo sapiens. Just as done for hubs, we evaluated the topological and biological properties of inter-complex hubs addressing the following questions. Do inter-complex hubs tend to be evolutionary conserved? What is the relation between crossroad index and essentiality? We found a good correlation between inter-complex hubs and both evolutionary conservation and essentiality.

  6. In vivo binding of the Cry11Bb toxin of Bacillus thuringiensis subsp. medellin to the midgut of mosquito larvae (Diptera: Culicidae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ruiz Lina María

    2004-01-01

    Full Text Available Bacillus thuringiensis subsp. medellin produces numerous proteins among which 94 kDa known as Cry11Bb, has mosquitocidal activity. The mode of action of the Cry11 proteins has been described as similar to those of the Cry1 toxins, nevertheless, the mechanism of action is still not clear. In this study we investigated the in vivo binding of the Cry11Bb toxin to the midgut of the insect species Anopheles albimanus, Aedes aegypti, and Culex quinquefasciatus by immunohistochemical analysis. Spodoptera frugiperda was included as negative control. The Cry11Bb protein was detected on the apical microvilli of the midgut epithelial cells, mostly on the posterior midgut and gastric caeca of the three mosquito species. Additionally, the toxin was detected in the Malpighian tubules of An. albimanus, Ae. aegypti, Cx. quinquefasciatus, and in the basal membrane of the epithelial cells of Ae. aegypti midgut. No toxin accumulation was observed in the peritrophic membrane of any of the mosquito species studied. These results confirm that the primary site of action of the Cry11 toxins is the apical membrane of the midgut epithelial cells of mosquito larvae.

  7. Altruism of Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli: recent hypothesis versus experimental results

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Joanna M Los

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli (STEC may cause bloody diarrhea and hemorrhagic colitis, with subsequent systemic disease. Since genes coding for Shiga toxins (stx genes are located on lambdoid prophages, their effective production occurs only after prophage induction. Such induction and subsequent lytic development of Shiga toxin-converting bacteriophages results not only in production of toxic proteins, but also in the lysis (and thus, the death of the host cell. Therefore, one may ask the question: what is the benefit for bacteria to produce the toxin if they die due to phage production and subsequent cell lysis? Recently, a hypothesis was proposed (simultaneously but independently by two research groups that STEC may benefit from Shiga toxin production as a result of toxin-dependent killing of eukaryotic cells such as unicellular predators or human leukocytes. This hypothesis could make sense only if we assume that prophage induction (and production of the toxin occurs only in a small fraction of bacterial cells, thus, a few members of the population are sacrificed for the benefit of the rest, providing an example of ‘bacterial altruism’. However, various reports indicating that the frequency of spontaneous induction of Shiga toxin-converting prophages is higher than that of other lambdoid prophages might seem to contradict the for-mentioned model. On the other hand, analysis of recently published results, discussed here, indicated that the efficiency of prophage excision under conditions that may likely occur in the natural habitat of STEC is sufficiently low to ensure survival of a large fraction of the bacterial host. A molecular mechanism by which partial prophage induction may occur is proposed. We conclude that the published data supports the proposed model of bacterial ‘altruism’ where prophage induction occurs at a low enough frequency to render toxin production a positive selective force on the general STEC population.

  8. Establishment of a sensitive time-resolved fluoroimmunoassay for detection of Bacillus thuringiensis Cry1Ie toxin based nanobody from a phage display library.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xu, Chongxin; Liu, Xiaoqin; Zhang, Cunzheng; Zhang, Xiao; Zhong, Jianfeng; Liu, Yuan; Hu, Xiaodan; Lin, Manman; Liu, Xianjin

    2017-02-01

    Cry1Ie toxin was an insect-resistant protein used in genetically modified crops (GMC). In this study, a large human VH gene nanobodies phage displayed library was employed to select anti-Cry1Ie toxin antibody by affinity panning. After 5 rounds of panning, total 12 positive monoclonal phage particles were obtained. One of the identified positive phage nanobody was expressed in E.coli BL21 and the purified protein was indicated as a molecular mass of approximately 20 kDa by sodium dodecyl sulfate polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis (SDS-PAGE). Then a sensitive indirect competitive time-resolved fluoroimmunoassay (IC-TRFIA) was established for detection of Cry1Ie toxin by the purified protein. The working range of detection for Cry1Ie toxin standards in the IC-TRFIA were 0.08-6.44 ng mL -1 and the medium inhibition of control (IC 50 ) was 0.73 ng mL -1 . It showed a weak cross-reactivity with Cry1Ab toxin (at 5.6%), but did not recognize Cry1B, Cry1C, Cry1F, and Cry2A toxins (were <0.1%). The average recoveries of Cry1Ie toxin from respectively spiked in rice, corn and soil samples were in the range of 83.5%-96.6% and with a coefficient of variation (CV) among 2.0%-8.6%. These results showed the IC-TRFIA was promising for detection of Cry1Ie toxin in agricultural and environmental samples. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  9. Comparative evolutionary analysis of protein complexes in E. coli and yeast

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ranea Juan AG

    2010-02-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Proteins do not act in isolation; they frequently act together in protein complexes to carry out concerted cellular functions. The evolution of complexes is poorly understood, especially in organisms other than yeast, where little experimental data has been available. Results We generated accurate, high coverage datasets of protein complexes for E. coli and yeast in order to study differences in the evolution of complexes between these two species. We show that substantial differences exist in how complexes have evolved between these organisms. A previously proposed model of complex evolution identified complexes with cores of interacting homologues. We support findings of the relative importance of this mode of evolution in yeast, but find that it is much less common in E. coli. Additionally it is shown that those homologues which do cluster in complexes are involved in eukaryote-specific functions. Furthermore we identify correlated pairs of non-homologous domains which occur in multiple protein complexes. These were identified in both yeast and E. coli and we present evidence that these too may represent complex cores in yeast but not those of E. coli. Conclusions Our results suggest that there are differences in the way protein complexes have evolved in E. coli and yeast. Whereas some yeast complexes have evolved by recruiting paralogues, this is not apparent in E. coli. Furthermore, such complexes are involved in eukaryotic-specific functions. This implies that the increase in gene family sizes seen in eukaryotes in part reflects multiple family members being used within complexes. However, in general, in both E. coli and yeast, homologous domains are used in different complexes.

  10. Expression and purification of recombinant Shiga toxin 2B from ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Expression and purification of recombinant Shiga toxin 2B from Escherichia coli O157:H7. ... (SDS-PAGE) and StxB2 yield was 450 μg ml-1 confirmed by Bradford assay. Recombinant Stx2B protein was produced in highly pure yield using ...

  11. Construction of bifunctional molecules specific to antigen and antibody’s Fc-fragment by fusion of scFv-antibodies with staphylococcal protein A

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kolibo D. V.

    2009-06-01

    Full Text Available Aim. To develop approach for detection of scFv and their complexes with antigens. Methods. The fusion proteins, which include sequences of scFv and staphylococcal protein A, were constructed and the obtained bifunctional molecules were immunochemically analysed. Results. It was shown, that scFv fused with protein A and their complexes with antigens are effectively recognized by labelled immunoglobulins with unrestricted antigenic specificity. Conclusions. The fusion of scFv with protein A fragment is a perspective approach to increase the efficiency of application in ELISA. The obtained scFv, fused with protein A, could be used for development of test-systems for the detection of diphtheria toxin.

  12. Mutation in the β-hairpin of the Bordetella pertussis adenylate cyclase toxin modulates N-lobe conformation in calmodulin

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Springer, Tzvia I.; Goebel, Erich; Hariraju, Dinesh; Finley, Natosha L.

    2014-01-01

    Highlights: • Bordetella pertussis adenylate cyclase toxin modulates bi-lobal structure of CaM. • The structure and stability of the complex rely on intermolecular associations. • A novel mode of CaM-dependent activation of the adenylate cyclase toxin is proposed. - Abstract: Bordetella pertussis, causative agent of whooping cough, produces an adenylate cyclase toxin (CyaA) that is an important virulence factor. In the host cell, the adenylate cyclase domain of CyaA (CyaA-ACD) is activated upon association with calmodulin (CaM), an EF-hand protein comprised of N- and C-lobes (N-CaM and C-CaM, respectively) connected by a flexible tether. Maximal CyaA-ACD activation is achieved through its binding to both lobes of intact CaM, but the structural mechanisms remain unclear. No high-resolution structure of the intact CaM/CyaA-ACD complex is available, but crystal structures of isolated C-CaM bound to CyaA-ACD shed light on the molecular mechanism by which this lobe activates the toxin. Previous studies using molecular modeling, biochemical, and biophysical experiments demonstrate that CyaA-ACD’s β-hairpin participates in site-specific interactions with N-CaM. In this study, we utilize nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy to probe the molecular association between intact CaM and CyaA-ACD. Our results indicate binding of CyaA-ACD to CaM induces large conformational perturbations mapping to C-CaM, while substantially smaller structural changes are localized primarily to helices I, II, and IV, and the metal-binding sites in N-CaM. Site-specific mutations in CyaA-ACD’s β-hairpin structurally modulate N-CaM, resulting in conformational perturbations in metal binding sites I and II, while no significant structural modifications are observed in C-CaM. Moreover, dynamic light scattering (DLS) analysis reveals that mutation of the β-hairpin results in a decreased hydrodynamic radius (R h ) and reduced thermal stability in the mutant complex. Taken together

  13. Mutation in the β-hairpin of the Bordetella pertussis adenylate cyclase toxin modulates N-lobe conformation in calmodulin

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Springer, Tzvia I.; Goebel, Erich; Hariraju, Dinesh [Department of Microbiology, Miami University, Oxford, OH 45056 (United States); Finley, Natosha L., E-mail: finleynl@miamioh.edu [Department of Microbiology, Miami University, Oxford, OH 45056 (United States); Cell, Molecular, and Structural Biology Program, Miami University, Oxford, OH 45056 (United States)

    2014-10-10

    Highlights: • Bordetella pertussis adenylate cyclase toxin modulates bi-lobal structure of CaM. • The structure and stability of the complex rely on intermolecular associations. • A novel mode of CaM-dependent activation of the adenylate cyclase toxin is proposed. - Abstract: Bordetella pertussis, causative agent of whooping cough, produces an adenylate cyclase toxin (CyaA) that is an important virulence factor. In the host cell, the adenylate cyclase domain of CyaA (CyaA-ACD) is activated upon association with calmodulin (CaM), an EF-hand protein comprised of N- and C-lobes (N-CaM and C-CaM, respectively) connected by a flexible tether. Maximal CyaA-ACD activation is achieved through its binding to both lobes of intact CaM, but the structural mechanisms remain unclear. No high-resolution structure of the intact CaM/CyaA-ACD complex is available, but crystal structures of isolated C-CaM bound to CyaA-ACD shed light on the molecular mechanism by which this lobe activates the toxin. Previous studies using molecular modeling, biochemical, and biophysical experiments demonstrate that CyaA-ACD’s β-hairpin participates in site-specific interactions with N-CaM. In this study, we utilize nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy to probe the molecular association between intact CaM and CyaA-ACD. Our results indicate binding of CyaA-ACD to CaM induces large conformational perturbations mapping to C-CaM, while substantially smaller structural changes are localized primarily to helices I, II, and IV, and the metal-binding sites in N-CaM. Site-specific mutations in CyaA-ACD’s β-hairpin structurally modulate N-CaM, resulting in conformational perturbations in metal binding sites I and II, while no significant structural modifications are observed in C-CaM. Moreover, dynamic light scattering (DLS) analysis reveals that mutation of the β-hairpin results in a decreased hydrodynamic radius (R{sub h}) and reduced thermal stability in the mutant complex. Taken

  14. Detection of Alpha-Toxin and Other Virulence Factors in Biofilms of Staphylococcus aureus on Polystyrene and a Human Epidermal Model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    den Reijer, P M; Haisma, E M; Lemmens-den Toom, N A; Willemse, J; Koning, R I; Koning, R A; Demmers, J A A; Dekkers, D H W; Rijkers, E; El Ghalbzouri, A; Nibbering, P H; van Wamel, W

    2016-01-01

    The ability of Staphylococcus aureus to successfully colonize (a)biotic surfaces may be explained by biofilm formation and the actions of virulence factors. The aim of the present study was to establish the presence of 52 proteins, including virulence factors such as alpha-toxin, during biofilm formation of five different (methicillin resistant) S. aureus strains on Leiden human epidermal models (LEMs) and polystyrene surfaces (PS) using a competitive Luminex-based assay. All five S. aureus strains formed biofilms on PS, whereas only three out of five strains formed biofilms on LEMs. Out of the 52 tested proteins, six functionally diverse proteins (ClfB, glucosaminidase, IsdA, IsaA, SACOL0688 and nuclease) were detected in biofilms of all strains on both PS and LEMs. At the same time, four toxins (alpha-toxin, gamma-hemolysin B and leukocidins D and E), two immune modulators (formyl peptide receptor-like inhibitory protein and Staphylococcal superantigen-like protein 1), and two other proteins (lipase and LytM) were detectable in biofilms by all five S. aureus strains on LEMs, but not on PS. In contrast, fibronectin-binding protein B (FnbpB) was detectable in biofilms by all S. aureus biofilms on PS, but not on LEMs. These data were largely confirmed by the results from proteomic and transcriptomic analyses and in case of alpha-toxin additionally by GFP-reporter technology. Functionally diverse virulence factors of (methicillin-resistant) S. aureus are present during biofilm formation on LEMs and PS. These results could aid in identifying novel targets for future treatment strategies against biofilm-associated infections.

  15. 'Fractional recovery' analysis of a presynaptic synaptotagmin 1-anchored endocytic protein complex.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rajesh Khanna

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: The integral synaptic vesicle protein and putative calcium sensor, synaptotagmin 1 (STG, has also been implicated in synaptic vesicle (SV recovery. However, proteins with which STG interacts during SV endocytosis remain poorly understood. We have isolated an STG-associated endocytic complex (SAE from presynaptic nerve terminals and have used a novel fractional recovery (FR assay based on electrostatic dissociation to identify SAE components and map the complex structure. The location of SAE in the presynaptic terminal was determined by high-resolution quantitative immunocytochemistry at the chick ciliary ganglion giant calyx-type synapse. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPLE FINDINGS: The first step in FR analysis was to immunoprecipitate (IP the complex with an antibody against one protein component (the IP-protein. The immobilized complex was then exposed to a high salt (1150 mM stress-test that caused shedding of co-immunoprecipitated proteins (co-IP-proteins. A Fractional Recovery ratio (FR: recovery after high salt/recovery with control salt as assayed by Western blot was calculated for each co-IP-protein. These FR values reflect complex structure since an easily dissociated protein, with a low FR value, cannot be intermediary between the IP-protein and a salt-resistant protein. The structure of the complex was mapped and a blueprint generated with a pair of FR analyses generated using two different IP-proteins. The blueprint of SAE contains an AP180/X/STG/stonin 2/intersectin/epsin core (X is unknown and epsin is hypothesized, and an AP2 adaptor, H-/L-clathrin coat and dynamin scission protein perimeter. Quantitative immunocytochemistry (ICA/ICQ method at an isolated calyx-type presynaptic terminal indicates that this complex is associated with STG at the presynaptic transmitter release face but not with STG on intracellular synaptic vesicles. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: We hypothesize that the SAE serves as a recognition site and also as a

  16. Induction of diphtheria toxin-resistant mutants in human cells by ultraviolet light

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rocchi, P.; Ferreri, A.M.; Capucci, A.; Prodi, G.

    1981-01-01

    Stable spontaneous mutants resistant to the protein synthesis inhibitor diphtheria toxin (DT) have been selected in human cell line EUE at a very low frequency (less than 8 x 10(-6)). U.v.-induced mutation has been quantitatively measured: treatment of cells with u.v. light increased the frequencies of diphtheria toxin resistant (DTr) mutants up to 1000-fold. The maximum recovery of DTr mutants was observed after a short expression period, for all u.v. doses tested, and was followed by a decrease in mutation frequency on subsequent passages

  17. Induction of diphtheria toxin-resistant mutants in human cells by ultraviolet light

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rocchi, P.; Ferreri, A.M.; Capucci, A.; Prodi, G.

    1981-01-01

    Stable spontaneous mutants resistant to the protein synthesis inhibitor diphtheria toxin (DT) have been selected in human cell line EUE at a very low frequency ( -6 ). U.v.-induced mutation has been quantitatively measured: treatment of cells with u.v. light increased the frequencies of diphtheria toxin resistant (DTsup(r)) mutants up to 1000-fold. The maximum recovery of DTsup(r) mutants was observed after a short expression period, for all u.v. doses tested, and was followed by a decrease in mutation frequency on subsequent passages. (author)

  18. Protein scaffolds and higher-order complexes in synthetic biology

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    den Hamer, A.; Rosier, B.J.H.M.; Brunsveld, L.; de Greef, T.F.A.; Ryadnov, M.; Brunsveld, L.; Suga, H.

    2017-01-01

    Interactions between proteins control molecular functions such as signalling or metabolic activity. Assembly of proteins via scaffold proteins or in higher-order complexes is a key regulatory mechanism. Understanding and functionally applying this concept requires the construction, study, and

  19. Differential neutralizing activities of a single domain camelid antibody (VHH specific for ricin toxin's binding subunit (RTB.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cristina Herrera

    Full Text Available Ricin, a member of the A-B family of ribosome-inactivating proteins, is classified as a Select Toxin by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention because of its potential use as a biothreat agent. In an effort to engineer therapeutics for ricin, we recently produced a collection of alpaca-derived, heavy-chain only antibody VH domains (VHH or "nanobody" specific for ricin's enzymatic (RTA and binding (RTB subunits. We reported that one particular RTB-specific VHH, RTB-B7, when covalently linked via a peptide spacer to different RTA-specific VHHs, resulted in heterodimers like VHH D10/B7 that were capable of passively protecting mice against a lethal dose challenge with ricin. However, RTB-B7 itself, when mixed with ricin at a 1 ∶ 10 toxin:antibody ratio did not afford any protection in vivo, even though it had demonstrable toxin-neutralizing activity in vitro. To better define the specific attributes of antibodies associated with ricin neutralization in vitro and in vivo, we undertook a more thorough characterization of RTB-B7. We report that RTB-B7, even at 100-fold molar excess (toxin:antibody was unable to alter the toxicity of ricin in a mouse model. On the other hand, in two well-established cytotoxicity assays, RTB-B7 neutralized ricin with a 50% inhibitory concentration (IC50 that was equivalent to that of 24B11, a well-characterized and potent RTB-specific murine monoclonal antibody. In fact, RTB-B7 and 24B11 were virtually identical when compared across a series of in vitro assays, including adherence to and neutralization of ricin after the toxin was pre-bound to cell surface receptors. RTB-B7 differed from both 24B11 and VHH D10/B7 in that it was relatively less effective at blocking ricin attachment to receptors on host cells and was not able to form high molecular weight toxin:antibody complexes in solution. Whether either of these activities is important in ricin toxin neutralizing activity in vivo remains to be determined.

  20. Surfactant-free purification of membrane protein complexes from bacteria: application to the staphylococcal penicillin-binding protein complex PBP2/PBP2a

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Paulin, Sarah; Rosado, Helena; Taylor, Peter W; Jamshad, Mohammed; Dafforn, Timothy R; Garcia-Lara, Jorge; Foster, Simon J; Galley, Nicola F; Roper, David I

    2014-01-01

    Surfactant-mediated removal of proteins from biomembranes invariably results in partial or complete loss of function and disassembly of multi-protein complexes. We determined the capacity of styrene-co-maleic acid (SMA) co-polymer to remove components of the cell division machinery from the membrane of drug-resistant staphylococcal cells. SMA-lipid nanoparticles solubilized FtsZ-PBP2-PBP2a complexes from intact cells, demonstrating the close physical proximity of these proteins within the lipid bilayer. Exposure of bacteria to (-)-epicatechin gallate, a polyphenolic agent that abolishes β-lactam resistance in staphylococci, disrupted the association between PBP2 and PBP2a. Thus, SMA purification provides a means to remove native integral membrane protein assemblages with minimal physical disruption and shows promise as a tool for the interrogation of molecular aspects of bacterial membrane protein structure and function. (paper)

  1. Surfactant-free purification of membrane protein complexes from bacteria: application to the staphylococcal penicillin-binding protein complex PBP2/PBP2a

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paulin, Sarah; Jamshad, Mohammed; Dafforn, Timothy R.; Garcia-Lara, Jorge; Foster, Simon J.; Galley, Nicola F.; Roper, David I.; Rosado, Helena; Taylor, Peter W.

    2014-07-01

    Surfactant-mediated removal of proteins from biomembranes invariably results in partial or complete loss of function and disassembly of multi-protein complexes. We determined the capacity of styrene-co-maleic acid (SMA) co-polymer to remove components of the cell division machinery from the membrane of drug-resistant staphylococcal cells. SMA-lipid nanoparticles solubilized FtsZ-PBP2-PBP2a complexes from intact cells, demonstrating the close physical proximity of these proteins within the lipid bilayer. Exposure of bacteria to (-)-epicatechin gallate, a polyphenolic agent that abolishes β-lactam resistance in staphylococci, disrupted the association between PBP2 and PBP2a. Thus, SMA purification provides a means to remove native integral membrane protein assemblages with minimal physical disruption and shows promise as a tool for the interrogation of molecular aspects of bacterial membrane protein structure and function.

  2. Recombinant Protein Containing B-Cell Epitopes of Different Loxosceles Spider Toxins Generates Neutralizing Antibodies in Immunized Rabbits.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lima, Sabrina de Almeida; Guerra-Duarte, Clara; Costal-Oliveira, Fernanda; Mendes, Thais Melo; Figueiredo, Luís F M; Oliveira, Daysiane; Machado de Avila, Ricardo A; Ferrer, Valéria Pereira; Trevisan-Silva, Dilza; Veiga, Silvio S; Minozzo, João C; Kalapothakis, Evanguedes; Chávez-Olórtegui, Carlos

    2018-01-01

    Loxoscelism is the most important form of araneism in South America. The treatment of these accidents uses heterologous antivenoms obtained from immunization of production animals with crude loxoscelic venom. Due to the scarcity of this immunogen, new alternatives for its substitution in antivenom production are of medical interest. In the present work, three linear epitopes for Loxosceles astacin-like protease 1 (LALP-1) (SLGRGCTDFGTILHE, ENNTRTIGPFDYDSIMLYGAY, and KLYKCPPVNPYPGGIRPYVNV) and two for hyaluronidase (LiHYAL) (NGGIPQLGDLKAHLEKSAVDI and ILDKSATGLRIIDWEAWR) from Loxosceles intermedia spider venom were identified by SPOT-synthesis technique. One formerly characterized linear epitope (DFSGPYLPSLPTLDA) of sphingomyelinase D (SMase D) SMase-I from Loxosceles laeta was also chosen to constitute a new recombinant multiepitopic protein. These epitopes were combined with a previously produced chimeric multiepitopic protein (rCpLi) composed by linear and conformational B-cell epitopes from SMase D from L. intermedia venom, generating a new recombinant multiepitopic protein derived from loxoscelic toxins (rMEPLox). We demonstrated that rMEPLox is non-toxic and antibodies elicited in rabbits against this antigen present reactivity in ELISA and immunoblot assays with Brazilian L. intermedia, L. laeta, L. gaucho , and L. similis spider venoms. In vivo and in vitro neutralization assays showed that anti-rMEPLox antibodies can efficiently neutralize the sphingomyelinase, hyaluronidase, and metalloproteinase activity of L. intermedia venom. This study suggests that this multiepitopic protein can be a suitable candidate for experimental vaccination approaches or for antivenom production against Loxosceles spp. venoms.

  3. Recombinant Protein Containing B-Cell Epitopes of Different Loxosceles Spider Toxins Generates Neutralizing Antibodies in Immunized Rabbits

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lima, Sabrina de Almeida; Guerra-Duarte, Clara; Costal-Oliveira, Fernanda; Mendes, Thais Melo; Figueiredo, Luís F. M.; Oliveira, Daysiane; Machado de Avila, Ricardo A.; Ferrer, Valéria Pereira; Trevisan-Silva, Dilza; Veiga, Silvio S.; Minozzo, João C.; Kalapothakis, Evanguedes; Chávez-Olórtegui, Carlos

    2018-01-01

    Loxoscelism is the most important form of araneism in South America. The treatment of these accidents uses heterologous antivenoms obtained from immunization of production animals with crude loxoscelic venom. Due to the scarcity of this immunogen, new alternatives for its substitution in antivenom production are of medical interest. In the present work, three linear epitopes for Loxosceles astacin-like protease 1 (LALP-1) (SLGRGCTDFGTILHE, ENNTRTIGPFDYDSIMLYGAY, and KLYKCPPVNPYPGGIRPYVNV) and two for hyaluronidase (LiHYAL) (NGGIPQLGDLKAHLEKSAVDI and ILDKSATGLRIIDWEAWR) from Loxosceles intermedia spider venom were identified by SPOT-synthesis technique. One formerly characterized linear epitope (DFSGPYLPSLPTLDA) of sphingomyelinase D (SMase D) SMase-I from Loxosceles laeta was also chosen to constitute a new recombinant multiepitopic protein. These epitopes were combined with a previously produced chimeric multiepitopic protein (rCpLi) composed by linear and conformational B-cell epitopes from SMase D from L. intermedia venom, generating a new recombinant multiepitopic protein derived from loxoscelic toxins (rMEPLox). We demonstrated that rMEPLox is non-toxic and antibodies elicited in rabbits against this antigen present reactivity in ELISA and immunoblot assays with Brazilian L. intermedia, L. laeta, L. gaucho, and L. similis spider venoms. In vivo and in vitro neutralization assays showed that anti-rMEPLox antibodies can efficiently neutralize the sphingomyelinase, hyaluronidase, and metalloproteinase activity of L. intermedia venom. This study suggests that this multiepitopic protein can be a suitable candidate for experimental vaccination approaches or for antivenom production against Loxosceles spp. venoms. PMID:29666624

  4. Determining protein complex connectivity using a probabilistic deletion network derived from quantitative proteomics.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mihaela E Sardiu

    2009-10-01

    Full Text Available Protein complexes are key molecular machines executing a variety of essential cellular processes. Despite the availability of genome-wide protein-protein interaction studies, determining the connectivity between proteins within a complex remains a major challenge. Here we demonstrate a method that is able to predict the relationship of proteins within a stable protein complex. We employed a combination of computational approaches and a systematic collection of quantitative proteomics data from wild-type and deletion strain purifications to build a quantitative deletion-interaction network map and subsequently convert the resulting data into an interdependency-interaction model of a complex. We applied this approach to a data set generated from components of the Saccharomyces cerevisiae Rpd3 histone deacetylase complexes, which consists of two distinct small and large complexes that are held together by a module consisting of Rpd3, Sin3 and Ume1. The resulting representation reveals new protein-protein interactions and new submodule relationships, providing novel information for mapping the functional organization of a complex.

  5. Gcn4-Mediator Specificity Is Mediated by a Large and Dynamic Fuzzy Protein-Protein Complex

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lisa M. Tuttle

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available Summary: Transcription activation domains (ADs are inherently disordered proteins that often target multiple coactivator complexes, but the specificity of these interactions is not understood. Efficient transcription activation by yeast Gcn4 requires its tandem ADs and four activator-binding domains (ABDs on its target, the Mediator subunit Med15. Multiple ABDs are a common feature of coactivator complexes. We find that the large Gcn4-Med15 complex is heterogeneous and contains nearly all possible AD-ABD interactions. Gcn4-Med15 forms via a dynamic fuzzy protein-protein interface, where ADs bind the ABDs in multiple orientations via hydrophobic regions that gain helicity. This combinatorial mechanism allows individual low-affinity and specificity interactions to generate a biologically functional, specific, and higher affinity complex despite lacking a defined protein-protein interface. This binding strategy is likely representative of many activators that target multiple coactivators, as it allows great flexibility in combinations of activators that can cooperate to regulate genes with variable coactivator requirements. : Tuttle et al. report a “fuzzy free-for-all” interaction mechanism that explains how seemingly unrelated transcription activators converge on a limited number of coactivator targets. The mechanism provides a rationale for the observation that individually weak and low-specificity interactions can combine to produce biologically critical function without requiring highly ordered structure. Keywords: transcription activation, intrinsically disordered proteins, fuzzy binding

  6. Thermal proximity coaggregation for system-wide profiling of protein complex dynamics in cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tan, Chris Soon Heng; Go, Ka Diam; Bisteau, Xavier; Dai, Lingyun; Yong, Chern Han; Prabhu, Nayana; Ozturk, Mert Burak; Lim, Yan Ting; Sreekumar, Lekshmy; Lengqvist, Johan; Tergaonkar, Vinay; Kaldis, Philipp; Sobota, Radoslaw M; Nordlund, Pär

    2018-03-09

    Proteins differentially interact with each other across cellular states and conditions, but an efficient proteome-wide strategy to monitor them is lacking. We report the application of thermal proximity coaggregation (TPCA) for high-throughput intracellular monitoring of protein complex dynamics. Significant TPCA signatures observed among well-validated protein-protein interactions correlate positively with interaction stoichiometry and are statistically observable in more than 350 annotated human protein complexes. Using TPCA, we identified many complexes without detectable differential protein expression, including chromatin-associated complexes, modulated in S phase of the cell cycle. Comparison of six cell lines by TPCA revealed cell-specific interactions even in fundamental cellular processes. TPCA constitutes an approach for system-wide studies of protein complexes in nonengineered cells and tissues and might be used to identify protein complexes that are modulated in diseases. Copyright © 2018 The Authors, some rights reserved; exclusive licensee American Association for the Advancement of Science. No claim to original U.S. Government Works.

  7. Evolutionary reprograming of protein-protein interaction specificity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Akiva, Eyal; Babbitt, Patricia C

    2015-10-22

    Using mutation libraries and deep sequencing, Aakre et al. study the evolution of protein-protein interactions using a toxin-antitoxin model. The results indicate probable trajectories via "intermediate" proteins that are promiscuous, thus avoiding transitions via non-interactions. These results extend observations about other biological interactions and enzyme evolution, suggesting broadly general principles. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  8. Mr 40,000 and Mr 39,000 pertussis toxin substrates are increased in surgically denervated dog ventricular myocardium

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hershberger, R.E.; Feldman, A.M.; Anderson, F.L.; Kimball, J.A.; Wynn, J.R.; Bristow, M.R. (Univ. of Utah School of Medicine, Salt Lake City (USA))

    1991-04-01

    To test the general hypothesis that cardiac innervation may participate in myocardial G protein regulation, we examined the effects of complete intrapericardial surgical denervation or sham operation in dogs. In particulate fractions of dog left ventricular (LV) myocardium harvested 28-33 days after denervation or sham operation, Mr 40,000 and Mr 39,000 pertussis toxin-sensitive substrates (G proteins) were increased by 31% (1.31 +/- 0.084 vs 1.00 +/- 0.058 OD, arbitrary units, p less than 0.01) and 40% (1.40 +/- 0.117 vs. 1.000 +/- 0.084 OD, arbitrary units, p less than 0.02), respectively, as compared with sham-operated controls. The Mr 40,000 pertussis toxin-sensitive band comigrated with a pertussis toxin-sensitive substrate in human erythrocyte membranes known to contain an alpha Gi species. In these same preparations basal, GTP and GppNHp stimulated adenylate cyclase activities were decreased in denervated heart by 20, 26, and 19%, respectively, consistent with increased activity of an inhibitory G protein. In contrast, Gs function was not altered, because cyc(-) membranes reconstituted with membrane extracts and fluoride and beta-receptor-stimulated adenylate cyclase activity were not different between groups. Furthermore, adenylate cyclase catalytic subunit function as assessed with forskolin and manganese stimulation was not different between preparations of control and denervated heart. We conclude that in preparations of surgically denervated dog myocardium Mr 40,000 and Mr 39,000 pertussis toxin-sensitive G proteins are increased by 31 and 40%, respectively, and that functional alterations in adenylate cyclase activity exist, consistent with increased inhibitory G-protein function.

  9. Mr 40,000 and Mr 39,000 pertussis toxin substrates are increased in surgically denervated dog ventricular myocardium

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hershberger, R.E.; Feldman, A.M.; Anderson, F.L.; Kimball, J.A.; Wynn, J.R.; Bristow, M.R.

    1991-01-01

    To test the general hypothesis that cardiac innervation may participate in myocardial G protein regulation, we examined the effects of complete intrapericardial surgical denervation or sham operation in dogs. In particulate fractions of dog left ventricular (LV) myocardium harvested 28-33 days after denervation or sham operation, Mr 40,000 and Mr 39,000 pertussis toxin-sensitive substrates (G proteins) were increased by 31% (1.31 +/- 0.084 vs 1.00 +/- 0.058 OD, arbitrary units, p less than 0.01) and 40% (1.40 +/- 0.117 vs. 1.000 +/- 0.084 OD, arbitrary units, p less than 0.02), respectively, as compared with sham-operated controls. The Mr 40,000 pertussis toxin-sensitive band comigrated with a pertussis toxin-sensitive substrate in human erythrocyte membranes known to contain an alpha Gi species. In these same preparations basal, GTP and GppNHp stimulated adenylate cyclase activities were decreased in denervated heart by 20, 26, and 19%, respectively, consistent with increased activity of an inhibitory G protein. In contrast, Gs function was not altered, because cyc(-) membranes reconstituted with membrane extracts and fluoride and beta-receptor-stimulated adenylate cyclase activity were not different between groups. Furthermore, adenylate cyclase catalytic subunit function as assessed with forskolin and manganese stimulation was not different between preparations of control and denervated heart. We conclude that in preparations of surgically denervated dog myocardium Mr 40,000 and Mr 39,000 pertussis toxin-sensitive G proteins are increased by 31 and 40%, respectively, and that functional alterations in adenylate cyclase activity exist, consistent with increased inhibitory G-protein function

  10. Botulinum Toxin (Botox) for Facial Wrinkles

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... Stories Español Eye Health / Eye Health A-Z Botulinum Toxin (Botox) for Facial Wrinkles Sections Botulinum Toxin (Botox) ... Facial Wrinkles How Does Botulinum Toxin (Botox) Work? Botulinum Toxin (Botox) for Facial Wrinkles Leer en Español: La ...

  11. Crystallization of the C-terminal domain of the addiction antidote CcdA in complex with its toxin CcdB

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Buts, Lieven; De Jonge, Natalie; Loris, Remy; Wyns, Lode; Dao-Thi, Minh-Hoa

    2005-01-01

    The CcdA C-terminal domain was crystallized in complex with CcdB in two crystal forms that diffract to beyond 2.0 Å resolution. CcdA and CcdB are the antidote and toxin of the ccd addiction module of Escherichia coli plasmid F. The CcdA C-terminal domain (CcdA C36 ; 36 amino acids) was crystallized in complex with CcdB (dimer of 2 × 101 amino acids) in three different crystal forms, two of which diffract to high resolution. Form II belongs to space group P2 1 2 1 2 1 , with unit-cell parameters a = 37.6, b = 60.5, c = 83.8 Å and diffracts to 1.8 Å resolution. Form III belongs to space group P2 1 , with unit-cell parameters a = 41.0, b = 37.9, c = 69.6 Å, β = 96.9°, and diffracts to 1.9 Å resolution

  12. Peroxisome protein import: a complex journey.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baker, Alison; Lanyon-Hogg, Thomas; Warriner, Stuart L

    2016-06-15

    The import of proteins into peroxisomes possesses many unusual features such as the ability to import folded proteins, and a surprising diversity of targeting signals with differing affinities that can be recognized by the same receptor. As understanding of the structure and function of many components of the protein import machinery has grown, an increasingly complex network of factors affecting each step of the import pathway has emerged. Structural studies have revealed the presence of additional interactions between cargo proteins and the PEX5 receptor that affect import potential, with a subtle network of cargo-induced conformational changes in PEX5 being involved in the import process. Biochemical studies have also indicated an interdependence of receptor-cargo import with release of unloaded receptor from the peroxisome. Here, we provide an update on recent literature concerning mechanisms of protein import into peroxisomes. © 2016 The Author(s).

  13. Interaction of the anaphase-promoting complex/cyclosome and proteasome protein complexes with multiubiquitin chain-binding proteins

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Seeger, Michael; Hartmann-Petersen, Rasmus; Wilkinson, Caroline R M

    2003-01-01

    Fission yeast Rhp23 and Pus1 represent two families of multiubiquitin chain-binding proteins that associate with the proteasome. We show that both proteins bind to different regions of the proteasome subunit Mts4. The binding site for Pus1 was mapped to a cluster of repetitive sequences also found...... in the proteasome subunit SpRpn2 and the anaphase-promoting complex/cyclosome (APC/C) subunit Cut4. The putative role of Pus1 as a factor involved in allocation of ubiquitinylated substrates for the proteasome is discussed....

  14. A theoretical model of the tridimensional structure of Bacillus thuringiensis subsp. medellin Cry 11Bb toxin deduced by homology modelling

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gutierrez Pablo

    2001-01-01

    Full Text Available Cry11Bb is an insecticidal crystal protein produced by Bacillus thuringiensis subsp. medellin during its stationary phase; this ¶-endotoxin is active against dipteran insects and has great potential for mosquito borne disease control. Here, we report the first theoretical model of the tridimensional structure of a Cry11 toxin. The tridimensional structure of the Cry11Bb toxin was obtained by homology modelling on the structures of the Cry1Aa and Cry3Aa toxins. In this work we give a brief description of our model and hypothesize the residues of the Cry11Bb toxin that could be important in receptor recognition and pore formation. This model will serve as a starting point for the design of mutagenesis experiments aimed to the improvement of toxicity, and to provide a new tool for the elucidation of the mechanism of action of these mosquitocidal proteins.

  15. Systematic identification of protein complexes in Saccharomyces cerevisiae by mass spectrometry

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ho, Yuen; Gruhler, Albrecht; Heilbut, Adrian

    2002-01-01

    The recent abundance of genome sequence data has brought an urgent need for systematic proteomics to decipher the encoded protein networks that dictate cellular function. To date, generation of large-scale protein-protein interaction maps has relied on the yeast two-hybrid system, which detects...... as a test case, an example of this approach, which we term high-throughput mass spectrometric protein complex identification (HMS-PCI). Beginning with 10% of predicted yeast proteins as baits, we detected 3,617 associated proteins covering 25% of the yeast proteome. Numerous protein complexes were...... identified, including many new interactions in various signalling pathways and in the DNA damage response. Comparison of the HMS-PCI data set with interactions reported in the literature revealed an average threefold higher success rate in detection of known complexes compared with large-scale two...

  16. Topical botulinum toxin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Collins, Ashley; Nasir, Adnan

    2010-03-01

    Nanotechnology is a rapidly growing discipline that capitalizes on the unique properties of matter engineered on the nanoscale. Vehicles incorporating nanotechnology have led to great strides in drug delivery, allowing for increased active ingredient stability, bioavailability, and site-specific targeting. Botulinum toxin has historically been used for the correction of neurological and neuromuscular disorders, such as torticollis, blepharospasm, and strabismus. Recent dermatological indications have been for the management of axillary hyperhydrosis and facial rhytides. Traditional methods of botulinum toxin delivery have been needle-based. These have been associated with increased pain and cost. Newer methods of botulinum toxin formulation have yielded topical preparations that are bioactive in small pilot clinical studies. While there are some risks associated with topical delivery, the refinement and standardization of delivery systems and techniques for the topical administration of botulinum toxin using nanotechnology is anticipated in the near future.

  17. Induction of Manduca sexta Larvae Caspases Expression in Midgut Cells by Bacillus thuringiensis Cry1Ab Toxin

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Helena Porta

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Bacillus thuringiensis produces crystal toxins known as Cry that are highly selective against important agricultural and human health-related insect pests. Cry proteins are pore-forming toxins that interact with specific receptors in the midgut cell membrane of susceptible larvae making pores that cause osmotic shock, leading finally to insect death. In the case of pore-forming toxins that are specific to mammalian cells, death responses at low doses may induce apoptosis or pyroptosis, depending on the cell type. The death mechanism induced by Cry toxins in insect midgut cells is poorly understood. Here, we analyze the caspases expression by RT-PCR analysis, showing that the initial response of Manduca sexta midgut cells after low dose of Cry1Ab toxin administration involves a fast and transient accumulation of caspase-1 mRNA, suggesting that pyroptosis was activated by Cry1Ab toxin as an initial response but was repressed later. In contrast, caspase-3 mRNA requires a longer period of time of toxin exposure to be activated but presents a sustained activation, suggesting that apoptosis may be a cell death mechanism induced also at low dose of toxin.

  18. Predicting co-complexed protein pairs using genomic and proteomic data integration

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    King Oliver D

    2004-04-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Identifying all protein-protein interactions in an organism is a major objective of proteomics. A related goal is to know which protein pairs are present in the same protein complex. High-throughput methods such as yeast two-hybrid (Y2H and affinity purification coupled with mass spectrometry (APMS have been used to detect interacting proteins on a genomic scale. However, both Y2H and APMS methods have substantial false-positive rates. Aside from high-throughput interaction screens, other gene- or protein-pair characteristics may also be informative of physical interaction. Therefore it is desirable to integrate multiple datasets and utilize their different predictive value for more accurate prediction of co-complexed relationship. Results Using a supervised machine learning approach – probabilistic decision tree, we integrated high-throughput protein interaction datasets and other gene- and protein-pair characteristics to predict co-complexed pairs (CCP of proteins. Our predictions proved more sensitive and specific than predictions based on Y2H or APMS methods alone or in combination. Among the top predictions not annotated as CCPs in our reference set (obtained from the MIPS complex catalogue, a significant fraction was found to physically interact according to a separate database (YPD, Yeast Proteome Database, and the remaining predictions may potentially represent unknown CCPs. Conclusions We demonstrated that the probabilistic decision tree approach can be successfully used to predict co-complexed protein (CCP pairs from other characteristics. Our top-scoring CCP predictions provide testable hypotheses for experimental validation.

  19. The coat protein complex II, COPII, protein Sec13 directly interacts with presenilin-1

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Nielsen, Anders Lade

    2009-01-01

    Mutations in the human gene encoding presenilin-1, PS1, account for most cases of early-onset familial Alzheimer's disease. PS1 has nine transmembrane domains and a large loop orientated towards the cytoplasm. PS1 locates to cellular compartments as endoplasmic reticulum (ER), Golgi apparatus, vesicular structures, and plasma membrane, and is an integral member of γ-secretase, a protein protease complex with specificity for intra-membranous cleavage of substrates such as β-amyloid precursor protein. Here, an interaction between PS1 and the Sec13 protein is described. Sec13 takes part in coat protein complex II, COPII, vesicular trafficking, nuclear pore function, and ER directed protein sequestering and degradation control. The interaction maps to the N-terminal part of the large hydrophilic PS1 loop and the first of the six WD40-repeats present in Sec13. The identified Sec13 interaction to PS1 is a new candidate interaction for linking PS1 to secretory and protein degrading vesicular circuits.

  20. The coat protein complex II, COPII, protein Sec13 directly interacts with presenilin-1

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Nielsen, Anders Lade, E-mail: aln@humgen.au.dk [Department of Human Genetics, The Bartholin Building, University of Aarhus, DK-8000 Aarhus C (Denmark)

    2009-10-23

    Mutations in the human gene encoding presenilin-1, PS1, account for most cases of early-onset familial Alzheimer's disease. PS1 has nine transmembrane domains and a large loop orientated towards the cytoplasm. PS1 locates to cellular compartments as endoplasmic reticulum (ER), Golgi apparatus, vesicular structures, and plasma membrane, and is an integral member of {gamma}-secretase, a protein protease complex with specificity for intra-membranous cleavage of substrates such as {beta}-amyloid precursor protein. Here, an interaction between PS1 and the Sec13 protein is described. Sec13 takes part in coat protein complex II, COPII, vesicular trafficking, nuclear pore function, and ER directed protein sequestering and degradation control. The interaction maps to the N-terminal part of the large hydrophilic PS1 loop and the first of the six WD40-repeats present in Sec13. The identified Sec13 interaction to PS1 is a new candidate interaction for linking PS1 to secretory and protein degrading vesicular circuits.

  1. From nonspecific DNA-protein encounter complexes to the prediction of DNA-protein interactions.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mu Gao

    2009-03-01

    Full Text Available DNA-protein interactions are involved in many essential biological activities. Because there is no simple mapping code between DNA base pairs and protein amino acids, the prediction of DNA-protein interactions is a challenging problem. Here, we present a novel computational approach for predicting DNA-binding protein residues and DNA-protein interaction modes without knowing its specific DNA target sequence. Given the structure of a DNA-binding protein, the method first generates an ensemble of complex structures obtained by rigid-body docking with a nonspecific canonical B-DNA. Representative models are subsequently selected through clustering and ranking by their DNA-protein interfacial energy. Analysis of these encounter complex models suggests that the recognition sites for specific DNA binding are usually favorable interaction sites for the nonspecific DNA probe and that nonspecific DNA-protein interaction modes exhibit some similarity to specific DNA-protein binding modes. Although the method requires as input the knowledge that the protein binds DNA, in benchmark tests, it achieves better performance in identifying DNA-binding sites than three previously established methods, which are based on sophisticated machine-learning techniques. We further apply our method to protein structures predicted through modeling and demonstrate that our method performs satisfactorily on protein models whose root-mean-square Calpha deviation from native is up to 5 A from their native structures. This study provides valuable structural insights into how a specific DNA-binding protein interacts with a nonspecific DNA sequence. The similarity between the specific DNA-protein interaction mode and nonspecific interaction modes may reflect an important sampling step in search of its specific DNA targets by a DNA-binding protein.

  2. A High-Throughput, Precipitating Colorimetric Sandwich ELISA Microarray for Shiga Toxins

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrew Gehring

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available Shiga toxins 1 and 2 (Stx1 and Stx2 from Shiga toxin-producing E. coli (STEC bacteria were simultaneously detected with a newly developed, high-throughput antibody microarray platform. The proteinaceous toxins were immobilized and sandwiched between biorecognition elements (monoclonal antibodies and pooled horseradish peroxidase (HRP-conjugated monoclonal antibodies. Following the reaction of HRP with the precipitating chromogenic substrate (metal enhanced 3,3-diaminobenzidine tetrahydrochloride or DAB, the formation of a colored product was quantitatively measured with an inexpensive flatbed page scanner. The colorimetric ELISA microarray was demonstrated to detect Stx1 and Stx2 at levels as low as ~4.5 ng/mL within ~2 h of total assay time with a narrow linear dynamic range of ~1–2 orders of magnitude and saturation levels well above background. Stx1 and/or Stx2 produced by various strains of STEC were also detected following the treatment of cultured cells with mitomycin C (a toxin-inducing antibiotic and/or B-PER (a cell-disrupting, protein extraction reagent. Semi-quantitative detection of Shiga toxins was demonstrated to be sporadic among various STEC strains following incubation with mitomycin C; however, further reaction with B-PER generally resulted in the detection of or increased detection of Stx1, relative to Stx2, produced by STECs inoculated into either axenic broth culture or culture broth containing ground beef.

  3. Clostridium sordellii lethal toxin kills mice by inducing a major increase in lung vascular permeability.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Geny, Blandine; Khun, Huot; Fitting, Catherine; Zarantonelli, Leticia; Mazuet, Christelle; Cayet, Nadège; Szatanik, Marek; Prevost, Marie-Christine; Cavaillon, Jean-Marc; Huerre, Michel; Popoff, Michel R

    2007-03-01

    When intraperitoneally injected into Swiss mice, Clostridium sordellii lethal toxin reproduces the fatal toxic shock syndrome observed in humans and animals after natural infection. This animal model was used to study the mechanism of lethal toxin-induced death. Histopathological and biochemical analyses identified lung and heart as preferential organs targeted by lethal toxin. Massive extravasation of blood fluid in the thoracic cage, resulting from an increase in lung vascular permeability, generated profound modifications such as animal dehydration, increase in hematocrit, hypoxia, and finally, cardiorespiratory failure. Vascular permeability increase induced by lethal toxin resulted from modifications of lung endothelial cells as evidenced by electron microscopy. Immunohistochemical analysis demonstrated that VE-cadherin, a protein participating in intercellular adherens junctions, was redistributed from membrane to cytosol in lung endothelial cells. No major sign of lethal toxin-induced inflammation was observed that could participate in the toxic shock syndrome. The main effect of the lethal toxin is the glucosylation-dependent inactivation of small GTPases, in particular Rac, which is involved in actin polymerization occurring in vivo in lungs leading to E-cadherin junction destabilization. We conclude that the cells most susceptible to lethal toxin are lung vascular endothelial cells, the adherens junctions of which were altered after intoxication.

  4. Predicting protein complexes using a supervised learning method combined with local structural information.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dong, Yadong; Sun, Yongqi; Qin, Chao

    2018-01-01

    The existing protein complex detection methods can be broadly divided into two categories: unsupervised and supervised learning methods. Most of the unsupervised learning methods assume that protein complexes are in dense regions of protein-protein interaction (PPI) networks even though many true complexes are not dense subgraphs. Supervised learning methods utilize the informative properties of known complexes; they often extract features from existing complexes and then use the features to train a classification model. The trained model is used to guide the search process for new complexes. However, insufficient extracted features, noise in the PPI data and the incompleteness of complex data make the classification model imprecise. Consequently, the classification model is not sufficient for guiding the detection of complexes. Therefore, we propose a new robust score function that combines the classification model with local structural information. Based on the score function, we provide a search method that works both forwards and backwards. The results from experiments on six benchmark PPI datasets and three protein complex datasets show that our approach can achieve better performance compared with the state-of-the-art supervised, semi-supervised and unsupervised methods for protein complex detection, occasionally significantly outperforming such methods.

  5. Finding low-conductance sets with dense interactions (FLCD) for better protein complex prediction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Yijie; Qian, Xiaoning

    2017-03-14

    Intuitively, proteins in the same protein complexes should highly interact with each other but rarely interact with the other proteins in protein-protein interaction (PPI) networks. Surprisingly, many existing computational algorithms do not directly detect protein complexes based on both of these topological properties. Most of them, depending on mathematical definitions of either "modularity" or "conductance", have their own limitations: Modularity has the inherent resolution problem ignoring small protein complexes; and conductance characterizes the separability of complexes but fails to capture the interaction density within complexes. In this paper, we propose a two-step algorithm FLCD (Finding Low-Conductance sets with Dense interactions) to predict overlapping protein complexes with the desired topological structure, which is densely connected inside and well separated from the rest of the networks. First, FLCD detects well-separated subnetworks based on approximating a potential low-conductance set through a personalized PageRank vector from a protein and then solving a mixed integer programming (MIP) problem to find the minimum-conductance set within the identified low-conductance set. At the second step, the densely connected parts in those subnetworks are discovered as the protein complexes by solving another MIP problem that aims to find the dense subnetwork in the minimum-conductance set. Experiments on four large-scale yeast PPI networks from different public databases demonstrate that the complexes predicted by FLCD have better correspondence with the yeast protein complex gold standards than other three state-of-the-art algorithms (ClusterONE, LinkComm, and SR-MCL). Additionally, results of FLCD show higher biological relevance with respect to Gene Ontology (GO) terms by GO enrichment analysis.

  6. VapC from the leptospiral VapBC toxin-antitoxin module displays ribonuclease activity on the initiator tRNA.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alexandre P Y Lopes

    Full Text Available The prokaryotic ubiquitous Toxin-Antitoxin (TA operons encode a stable toxin and an unstable antitoxin. The most accepted hypothesis of the physiological function of the TA system is the reversible cessation of cellular growth under stress conditions. The major TA family, VapBC is present in the spirochaete Leptospira interrogans. VapBC modules are classified based on the presence of a predicted ribonucleasic PIN domain in the VapC toxin. The expression of the leptospiral VapC in E. coli promotes a strong bacterial growth arrestment, making it difficult to express the recombinant protein. Nevertheless, we showed that long term induction of expression in E. coli enabled the recovery of VapC in inclusion bodies. The recombinant protein was successfully refolded by high hydrostatic pressure, providing a new method to obtain the toxin in a soluble and active form. The structural integrity of the recombinant VapB and VapC proteins was assessed by circular dichroism spectroscopy. Physical interaction between the VapC toxin and the VapB antitoxin was demonstrated in vivo and in vitro by pull down and ligand affinity blotting assays, respectively, thereby indicating the ultimate mechanism by which the activity of the toxin is regulated in bacteria. The predicted model of the leptospiral VapC structure closely matches the Shigella's VapC X-ray structure. In agreement, the ribonuclease activity of the leptospiral VapC was similar to the activity described for Shigella's VapC, as demonstrated by the cleavage of tRNAfMet and by the absence of unspecific activity towards E. coli rRNA. This finding suggests that the cleavage of the initiator transfer RNA may represent a common mechanism to a larger group of bacteria and potentially configures a mechanism of post-transcriptional regulation leading to the inhibition of global translation.

  7. Quantifying the energetics of cooperativity in a ternary protein complex

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Andersen, Peter S; Schuck, Peter; Sundberg, Eric J

    2002-01-01

    and mathematical modeling to describe the energetics of cooperativity in a trimolecular protein complex. As a model system for quantifying cooperativity, we studied the ternary complex formed by the simultaneous interaction of a superantigen with major histocompatibility complex and T cell receptor, for which...... a structural model is available. This system exhibits positive and negative cooperativity, as well as augmentation of the temperature dependence of binding kinetics upon the cooperative interaction of individual protein components in the complex. Our experimental and theoretical analysis may be applicable...... to other systems involving cooperativity....

  8. Peptide toxin glacontryphan-M is present in the wings of the butterfly Hebomoia glaucippe (Linnaeus, 1758) (Lepidoptera: Pieridae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bae, Narkhyun; Li, Lin; Lödl, Martin; Lubec, Gert

    2012-10-30

    Protein profiling has revealed the presence of glacontryphan-M, a peptide toxin identified only in the sea snail genus Conus, in the wings of Hebomoia glaucippe (HG). The wings and body of HG were homogenized and the proteins were extracted and analyzed by 2D gel electrophoresis with subsequent in-gel digestion. Posttranslational protein modifications were detected and analyzed by nano-LC-MS/MS. An antibody was generated against glacontryphan-M, and protein extracts from the wings of HG samples from Malaysia, Indonesia, and the Philippines were tested by immunoblotting. Glacontryphan-M was unambiguously identified in the wings of HG containing the following posttranslational protein modifications: monoglutamylation at E55, methylation at E53, quinone modification at W61, cyanylation at C56, and amidation of the C terminus at G63. Immunoblotting revealed the presence of the toxin in the wings of HG from all origins, showing a single band for glacontryphan-M in HG samples from Malaysia and Philippines and a double band in HG samples from Indonesia. Intriguingly, sequence analysis indicated that the Conus glacontryphan is identical to that of HG. The toxin may function as a defense against diverse predators, including ants, mantes, spiders, lizards, green frogs, and birds.

  9. A Simple and Specific Noncompetitive ELISA Method for HT-2 Toxin Detection

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Henri O. Arola

    2017-04-01

    Full Text Available We developed an HT-2 toxin-specific simple ELISA format with a positive read-out. The assay is based on an anti-immune complex (IC scFv antibody fragment, which is genetically fused with alkaline phosphatase (AP. The anti-IC antibody specifically recognizes the IC between a primary anti-HT-2 toxin Fab fragment and an HT-2 toxin molecule. In the IC ELISA format, the sample is added together with the scFv-AP antibody to the ELISA plate coated with the primary antibody. After 15 min of incubation and a washing step, the ELISA response is read. A competitive ELISA including only the primary antibody recognizes both HT-2 and T-2 toxins. The anti-IC antibody makes the assay specific for HT-2 toxin, and the IC ELISA is over 10 times more sensitive compared to the competitive assay. Three different naturally contaminated matrices: wheat, barley and oats, were used to evaluate the assay performance with real samples. The corresponding limits of detection were 0.3 ng/mL (13 µg/kg, 0.1 ng/mL (4 µg/kg and 0.3 ng/mL (16 µg/kg, respectively. The IC ELISA can be used for screening HT-2 toxin specifically and in relevant concentration ranges from all three tested grain matrices.

  10. Botulinum toxin injection - larynx

    Science.gov (United States)

    Injection laryngoplasty; Botox - larynx: spasmodic dysphonia-BTX; Essential voice tremor (EVT)-btx; Glottic insufficiency; Percutaneous electromyography - guided botulinum toxin treatment; Percutaneous indirect laryngoscopy - guided botulinum toxin treatment; ...

  11. Localization of Bacillus thuringiensis Cry1A toxin-binding molecules in gypsy moth larval gut sections using fluorescence microscopy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Algimantas P. Valaitis

    2011-01-01

    The microbial insecticide Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt) produces Cry toxins, proteins that bind to the brush border membranes of gut epithelial cells of insects that ingest it, disrupting the integrity of the membranes, and leading to cell lysis and insect death. In gypsy moth, Lymantria dispar, two toxin-binding molecules for the...

  12. Persistence of Bt Bacillus thuringiensis Cry1Aa toxin in various soils determined by physicochemical reactions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Helassa, N.; Noinville, S.; Déjardin, P.; Janot, J. M.; Quiquampoix, H.; Staunton, S.

    2009-04-01

    Insecticidal Cry proteins from the soil bacterium, Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt) are produced by a class of genetically modified (GM) crops, and released into soils through root exudates and upon decomposition of residues. In contrast to the protoxin produced by the Bacillus, the protein produced in GM crops does not require activation in insect midguts and thereby potentially looses some of its species specificity. Although gene transfer and resistance emergence phenomena are well documented, the fate of these toxins in soil has not yet been clearly elucidated. Cry proteins, in common with other proteins, are adsorbed on soils and soil components. Adsorption on soil, and the reversibility of this adsorption is an important aspect of the environmental behaviour of these toxins. The orientation of the molecule and conformational changes on surfaces may modify the toxicity and confer some protection against microbial degradation. Adsorption will have important consequences for both the risk of exposition of non target species and the acquisition of resistance by target species. We have adopted different approaches to investigate the fate of Cry1Aa in soils and model minerals. In each series of experiments we endeavoured to maintain the protein in a monomeric form (pH above 6.5 and a high ionic strength imposed with 150 mM NaCl). The adsorption and the desorbability of the Cry1Aa Bt insecticidal protein were measured on two different homoionic clays: montmorillonite and kaolinite. Adsorption isotherms obtained followed a low affinity interaction for both clays and could be fitted using the Langmuir equation. Binding of the toxin decreased as the pH increased from 6.5 (close to the isoelectric point) to 9. Maximum adsorption was about 40 times greater on montmorillonite (1.71 g g-1) than on kaolinite (0.04 g g-1) in line with the contrasting respective specific surface areas of the minerals. Finally, some of the adsorbed toxin was desorbed by water and more, about 36

  13. Determination of disulfide bridges of two spider toxins: hainantoxin-III and hainantoxin-IV

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    W Wang

    2009-01-01

    Full Text Available Peptide toxins are usually highly bridged proteins with multipairs of intrachain disulfide bonds. Analysis of disulfide connectivity is an important facet of protein structure determination. In this paper, we successfully assigned the disulfide linkage of two novel peptide toxins, called HNTX-III and HNTX-IV, isolated from the venom of Ornithoctonus hainana spider. Both peptides are useful inhibitors of TTX-sensitive voltage-gated sodium channels and are composed of six cysteine residues that form three disulfide bonds, respectively. Firstly, the peptides were partially reduced by tris(2-carboxyethyl-phosphine (TCEP in 0.1 M citrate buffer containing 6 M guanidine-HCl at 40° C for ten minutes. Subsequently, the partially reduced intermediates containing free thiols were separated by reversed-phase high-performance liquid chromatography (RP-HPLC and alkylated by rapid carboxamidomethylation. Then, the disulfide bonds of the intermediates were analyzed by Edman degradation. By using the strategy above, disulfide linkages of HNTX-III and HNTX-IV were determined as I-IV, II-V and III-VI pattern. In addition, this study also showed that this method may have a great potential for determining the disulfide bonds of spider peptide toxins.

  14. The Biology of the Cytolethal Distending Toxins

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Teresa Frisan

    2011-03-01

    Full Text Available The cytolethal distending toxins (CDTs, produced by a variety of Gram-negative pathogenic bacteria, are the first bacterial genotoxins described, since they cause DNA damage in the target cells. CDT is an A-B2 toxin, where the CdtA and CdtC subunits are required to mediate the binding on the surface of the target cells, allowing internalization of the active CdtB subunit, which is functionally homologous to the mammalian deoxyribonuclease I. The nature of the surface receptor is still poorly characterized, however binding of CDT requires intact lipid rafts, and its internalization occurs via dynamin-dependent endocytosis. The toxin is retrograde transported through the Golgi complex and the endoplasmic reticulum, and subsequently translocated into the nuclear compartment, where it exerts the toxic activity. Cellular intoxication induces DNA damage and activation of the DNA damage responses, which results in arrest of the target cells in the G1 and/or G2 phases of the cell cycle and activation of DNA repair mechanisms. Cells that fail to repair the damage will senesce or undergo apoptosis. This review will focus on the well-characterized aspects of the CDT biology and discuss the questions that still remain unanswered.

  15. The fifth adaptor protein complex.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jennifer Hirst

    2011-10-01

    Full Text Available Adaptor protein (AP complexes sort cargo into vesicles for transport from one membrane compartment of the cell to another. Four distinct AP complexes have been identified, which are present in most eukaryotes. We report the existence of a fifth AP complex, AP-5. Tagged AP-5 localises to a late endosomal compartment in HeLa cells. AP-5 does not associate with clathrin and is insensitive to brefeldin A. Knocking down AP-5 subunits interferes with the trafficking of the cation-independent mannose 6-phosphate receptor and causes the cell to form swollen endosomal structures with emanating tubules. AP-5 subunits can be found in all five eukaryotic supergroups, but they have been co-ordinately lost in many organisms. Concatenated phylogenetic analysis provides robust resolution, for the first time, into the evolutionary order of emergence of the adaptor subunit families, showing AP-3 as the basal complex, followed by AP-5, AP-4, and AP-1 and AP-2. Thus, AP-5 is an evolutionarily ancient complex, which is involved in endosomal sorting, and which has links with hereditary spastic paraplegia.

  16. On the importance of polar interactions for complexes containing intrinsically disordered proteins.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eric T C Wong

    Full Text Available There is a growing recognition for the importance of proteins with large intrinsically disordered (ID segments in cell signaling and regulation. ID segments in these proteins often harbor regions that mediate molecular recognition. Coupled folding and binding of the recognition regions has been proposed to confer high specificity to interactions involving ID segments. However, researchers recently questioned the origin of the interaction specificity of ID proteins because of the overrepresentation of hydrophobic residues in their interaction interfaces. Here, we focused on the role of polar and charged residues in interactions mediated by ID segments. Making use of the extended nature of most ID segments when in complex with globular proteins, we first identified large numbers of complexes between globular proteins and ID segments by using radius-of-gyration-based selection criteria. Consistent with previous studies, we found the interfaces of these complexes to be enriched in hydrophobic residues, and that these residues contribute significantly to the stability of the interaction interface. However, our analyses also show that polar interactions play a larger role in these complexes than in structured protein complexes. Computational alanine scanning and salt-bridge analysis indicate that interfaces in ID complexes are highly complementary with respect to electrostatics, more so than interfaces of globular proteins. Follow-up calculations of the electrostatic contributions to the free energy of binding uncovered significantly stronger Coulombic interactions in complexes harbouring ID segments than in structured protein complexes. However, they are counter-balanced by even higher polar-desolvation penalties. We propose that polar interactions are a key contributing factor to the observed high specificity of ID segment-mediated interactions.

  17. The Search Engine for Multi-Proteoform Complexes: An Online Tool for the Identification and Stoichiometry Determination of Protein Complexes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Skinner, Owen S; Schachner, Luis F; Kelleher, Neil L

    2016-12-08

    Recent advances in top-down mass spectrometry using native electrospray now enable the analysis of intact protein complexes with relatively small sample amounts in an untargeted mode. Here, we describe how to characterize both homo- and heteropolymeric complexes with high molecular specificity using input data produced by tandem mass spectrometry of whole protein assemblies. The tool described is a "search engine for multi-proteoform complexes," (SEMPC) and is available for free online. The output is a list of candidate multi-proteoform complexes and scoring metrics, which are used to define a distinct set of one or more unique protein subunits, their overall stoichiometry in the intact complex, and their pre- and post-translational modifications. Thus, we present an approach for the identification and characterization of intact protein complexes from native mass spectrometry data. © 2016 by John Wiley & Sons, Inc. Copyright © 2016 John Wiley & Sons, Inc.

  18. Proteomic Identification of Novel Secreted Antibacterial Toxins of the Serratia marcescens Type VI Secretion System*

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fritsch, Maximilian J.; Trunk, Katharina; Diniz, Juliana Alcoforado; Guo, Manman; Trost, Matthias; Coulthurst, Sarah J.

    2013-01-01

    It has recently become apparent that the Type VI secretion system (T6SS) is a complex macromolecular machine used by many bacterial species to inject effector proteins into eukaryotic or bacterial cells, with significant implications for virulence and interbacterial competition. “Antibacterial” T6SSs, such as the one elaborated by the opportunistic human pathogen, Serratia marcescens, confer on the secreting bacterium the ability to rapidly and efficiently kill rival bacteria. Identification of secreted substrates of the T6SS is critical to understanding its role and ability to kill other cells, but only a limited number of effectors have been reported so far. Here we report the successful use of label-free quantitative mass spectrometry to identify at least eleven substrates of the S. marcescens T6SS, including four novel effector proteins which are distinct from other T6SS-secreted proteins reported to date. These new effectors were confirmed as antibacterial toxins and self-protecting immunity proteins able to neutralize their cognate toxins were identified. The global secretomic study also unexpectedly revealed that protein phosphorylation-based post-translational regulation of the S. marcescens T6SS differs from that of the paradigm, H1-T6SS of Pseudomonas aeruginosa. Combined phosphoproteomic and genetic analyses demonstrated that conserved PpkA-dependent threonine phosphorylation of the T6SS structural component Fha is required for T6SS activation in S. marcescens and that the phosphatase PppA can reverse this modification. However, the signal and mechanism of PpkA activation is distinct from that observed previously and does not appear to require cell–cell contact. Hence this study has not only demonstrated that new and species-specific portfolios of antibacterial effectors are secreted by the T6SS, but also shown for the first time that PpkA-dependent post-translational regulation of the T6SS is tailored to fit the needs of different bacterial

  19. Engineered toxins "zymoxins" are activated by the HCV NS3 protease by removal of an inhibitory protein domain.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Assaf Shapira

    Full Text Available The synthesis of inactive enzyme precursors, also known as "zymogens," serves as a mechanism for regulating the execution of selected catalytic activities in a desirable time and/or site. Zymogens are usually activated by proteolytic cleavage. Many viruses encode proteases that execute key proteolytic steps of the viral life cycle. Here, we describe a proof of concept for a therapeutic approach to fighting viral infections through eradication of virally infected cells exclusively, thus limiting virus production and spread. Using the hepatitis C virus (HCV as a model, we designed two HCV NS3 protease-activated "zymogenized" chimeric toxins (which we denote "zymoxins". In these recombinant constructs, the bacterial and plant toxins diphtheria toxin A (DTA and Ricin A chain (RTA, respectively, were fused to rationally designed inhibitor peptides/domains via an HCV NS3 protease-cleavable linker. The above toxins were then fused to the binding and translocation domains of Pseudomonas exotoxin A in order to enable translocation into the mammalian cells cytoplasm. We show that these toxins exhibit NS3 cleavage dependent increase in enzymatic activity upon NS3 protease cleavage in vitro. Moreover, a higher level of cytotoxicity was observed when zymoxins were applied to NS3 expressing cells or to HCV infected cells, demonstrating a potential therapeutic window. The increase in toxin activity correlated with NS3 protease activity in the treated cells, thus the therapeutic window was larger in cells expressing recombinant NS3 than in HCV infected cells. This suggests that the "zymoxin" approach may be most appropriate for application to life-threatening acute infections where much higher levels of the activating protease would be expected.

  20. Which clustering algorithm is better for predicting protein complexes?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Moschopoulos Charalampos N

    2011-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Protein-Protein interactions (PPI play a key role in determining the outcome of most cellular processes. The correct identification and characterization of protein interactions and the networks, which they comprise, is critical for understanding the molecular mechanisms within the cell. Large-scale techniques such as pull down assays and tandem affinity purification are used in order to detect protein interactions in an organism. Today, relatively new high-throughput methods like yeast two hybrid, mass spectrometry, microarrays, and phage display are also used to reveal protein interaction networks. Results In this paper we evaluated four different clustering algorithms using six different interaction datasets. We parameterized the MCL, Spectral, RNSC and Affinity Propagation algorithms and applied them to six PPI datasets produced experimentally by Yeast 2 Hybrid (Y2H and Tandem Affinity Purification (TAP methods. The predicted clusters, so called protein complexes, were then compared and benchmarked with already known complexes stored in published databases. Conclusions While results may differ upon parameterization, the MCL and RNSC algorithms seem to be more promising and more accurate at predicting PPI complexes. Moreover, they predict more complexes than other reviewed algorithms in absolute numbers. On the other hand the spectral clustering algorithm achieves the highest valid prediction rate in our experiments. However, it is nearly always outperformed by both RNSC and MCL in terms of the geometrical accuracy while it generates the fewest valid clusters than any other reviewed algorithm. This article demonstrates various metrics to evaluate the accuracy of such predictions as they are presented in the text below. Supplementary material can be found at: http://www.bioacademy.gr/bioinformatics/projects/ppireview.htm

  1. Patterning protein complexes on DNA nanostructures using a GFP nanobody.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sommese, R F; Hariadi, R F; Kim, K; Liu, M; Tyska, M J; Sivaramakrishnan, S

    2016-11-01

    DNA nanostructures have become an important and powerful tool for studying protein function over the last 5 years. One of the challenges, though, has been the development of universal methods for patterning protein complexes on DNA nanostructures. Herein, we present a new approach for labeling DNA nanostructures by functionalizing them with a GFP nanobody. We demonstrate the ability to precisely control protein attachment via our nanobody linker using two enzymatic model systems, namely adenylyl cyclase activity and myosin motility. Finally, we test the power of this attachment method by patterning unpurified, endogenously expressed Arp2/3 protein complex from cell lysate. By bridging DNA nanostructures with a fluorescent protein ubiquitous throughout cell and developmental biology and protein biochemistry, this approach significantly streamlines the application of DNA nanostructures as a programmable scaffold in biological studies. © 2016 The Protein Society.

  2. Reduced protein bound uraemic toxins in vegetarian kidney failure patients treated by haemodiafiltration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kandouz, Sakina; Mohamed, Ali Shendi; Zheng, Yishan; Sandeman, Susan; Davenport, Andrew

    2016-10-01

    Introduction Indoxyl sulfate (IS) and p cresyl sulfate (PCS) are protein bound toxins which accumulate with chronic kidney disease. Haemodiafiltration (HDF) increases middle molecule clearances and has been suggested to increase IS and PCS clearance. We therefore wished to establish whether higher convective clearances with HDF would reduce IS and PCS concentrations. Methods We measured total plasma IS and PCS in a cohort of 138 CKD5d patients treated by On-line HDF (Ol-HDF), by high pressure liquid chromatography. Findings Mean patient age was 64.6 ± 16.5 years, 60.1% male, 57.3% diabetic, median dialysis vintage 25.9 months (12.4-62.0). The mean ICS concentration was 79.8 ± 56.4 umol/L and PCS 140.3 ± 101.8 umol/L. On multivariate analysis, IS was associated with serum albumin (β 4.31,P vegetarian diet(β-28.3, P = 0.048) and PCS negatively with log C reactive protein (β-75.8, P vegetarian diet (β-109, P = 0.001). Vegetarian patients had lower IS and PCS levels (median 41.5 (24.2-71.9) vs. 78.1 (49.5-107.5) and PCS (41.6 (14.2-178.3) vs. 127.3 (77.4-205.6) µmol/L, respectively, P Vegetarian patients had lower preOl-HDF serum urea, and phosphate (13.8 ±3.8 vs. 18.4 ± 5.2 mmol/L, and 1.33 ± 0.21 vs. 1.58 ± 0.45 mmol/L), and estimated urea nitrogen intake (1.25 ± 0.28 vs. 1.62 ± 0.5 g/kg/day), respectively, all P vegetarian diet had reduced IS and PCS concentrations. Although this could be due to differences in dietary protein intake, a vegetarian diet may also potentially reduce IS and PCS production by the intestinal microbiome. © 2016 International Society for Hemodialysis.

  3. [Intoxication of botulinum toxin].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chudzicka, Aleksandra

    2015-09-01

    Botulinum toxin is an egzotoxin produced by Gram positive bacteria Clostridium botulinum. It is among the most potent toxins known. The 3 main clinical presentations of botulism are as follows: foodborne botulism, infant botulism and wound botulism. The main symptom of intoxication is flat muscles paralysis. The treatment is supportive care and administration of antitoxin. In prevention the correct preparing of canned food is most important. Botulinum toxin is accepted as a biological weapon. © 2015 MEDPRESS.

  4. Characterization of the ternary Usher syndrome SANS/ush2a/whirlin protein complex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sorusch, Nasrin; Bauß, Katharina; Plutniok, Janet; Samanta, Ananya; Knapp, Barbara; Nagel-Wolfrum, Kerstin; Wolfrum, Uwe

    2017-03-15

    The Usher syndrome (USH) is the most common form of inherited deaf-blindness, accompanied by vestibular dysfunction. Due to the heterogeneous manifestation of the clinical symptoms, three USH types (USH1-3) and additional atypical forms are distinguished. USH1 and USH2 proteins have been shown to function together in multiprotein networks in photoreceptor cells and hair cells. Mutations in USH proteins are considered to disrupt distinct USH protein networks and finally lead to the development of USH.To get novel insights into the molecular pathomechanisms underlying USH, we further characterize the periciliary USH protein network in photoreceptor cells. We show the direct interaction between the scaffold protein SANS (USH1G) and the transmembrane adhesion protein ush2a and that both assemble into a ternary USH1/USH2 complex together with the PDZ-domain protein whirlin (USH2D) via mutual interactions. Immunohistochemistry and proximity ligation assays demonstrate co-localization of complex partners and complex formation, respectively, in the periciliary region, the inner segment and at the synapses of rodent and human photoreceptor cells. Protein-protein interaction assays and co-expression of complex partners reveal that pathogenic mutations in USH1G severely affect formation of the SANS/ush2a/whirlin complex. Translational read-through drug treatment, targeting the c.728C > A (p.S243X) nonsense mutation, restored SANS scaffold function. We conclude that USH1 and USH2 proteins function together in higher order protein complexes. The maintenance of USH1/USH2 protein complexes depends on multiple USH1/USH2 protein interactions, which are disrupted by pathogenic mutations in USH1G protein SANS. © The Author 2017. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  5. The Phosphatidylinositol (3,4,5)-Trisphosphate-dependent Rac Exchanger 1·Ras-related C3 Botulinum Toxin Substrate 1 (P-Rex1·Rac1) Complex Reveals the Basis of Rac1 Activation in Breast Cancer Cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lucato, Christina M; Halls, Michelle L; Ooms, Lisa M; Liu, Heng-Jia; Mitchell, Christina A; Whisstock, James C; Ellisdon, Andrew M

    2015-08-21

    The P-Rex (phosphatidylinositol (3,4,5)-trisphosphate (PIP3)-dependent Rac exchanger) family (P-Rex1 and P-Rex2) of the Rho guanine nucleotide exchange factors (Rho GEFs) activate Rac GTPases to regulate cell migration, invasion, and metastasis in several human cancers. The family is unique among Rho GEFs, as their activity is regulated by the synergistic binding of PIP3 and Gβγ at the plasma membrane. However, the molecular mechanism of this family of multi-domain proteins remains unclear. We report the 1.95 Å crystal structure of the catalytic P-Rex1 DH-PH tandem domain in complex with its cognate GTPase, Rac1 (Ras-related C3 botulinum toxin substrate-1). Mutations in the P-Rex1·Rac1 interface revealed a critical role for this complex in signaling downstream of receptor tyrosine kinases and G protein-coupled receptors. The structural data indicated that the PIP3/Gβγ binding sites are on the opposite surface and markedly removed from the Rac1 interface, supporting a model whereby P-Rex1 binding to PIP3 and/or Gβγ releases inhibitory C-terminal domains to expose the Rac1 binding site. © 2015 by The American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Inc.

  6. Evaluation of Rapid, Early Warning Approaches to Track Shellfish Toxins Associated with Dinophysis and Alexandrium Blooms

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Theresa K. Hattenrath-Lehmann

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available Marine biotoxin-contaminated seafood has caused thousands of poisonings worldwide this century. Given these threats, there is an increasing need for improved technologies that can be easily integrated into coastal monitoring programs. This study evaluates approaches for monitoring toxins associated with recurrent toxin-producing Alexandrium and Dinophysis blooms on Long Island, NY, USA, which cause paralytic and diarrhetic shellfish poisoning (PSP and DSP, respectively. Within contrasting locations, the dynamics of pelagic Alexandrium and Dinophysis cell densities, toxins in plankton, and toxins in deployed blue mussels (Mytilus edulis were compared with passive solid-phase adsorption toxin tracking (SPATT samplers filled with two types of resin, HP20 and XAD-2. Multiple species of wild shellfish were also collected during Dinophysis blooms and used to compare toxin content using two different extraction techniques (single dispersive and double exhaustive and two different toxin analysis assays (liquid chromatography/mass spectrometry and the protein phosphatase inhibition assay (PP2A for the measurement of DSP toxins. DSP toxins measured in the HP20 resin were significantly correlated (R2 = 0.7–0.9, p < 0.001 with total DSP toxins in shellfish, but were detected more than three weeks prior to detection in deployed mussels. Both resins adsorbed measurable levels of PSP toxins, but neither quantitatively tracked Alexandrium cell densities, toxicity in plankton or toxins in shellfish. DSP extraction and toxin analysis methods did not differ significantly (p > 0.05, were highly correlated (R2 = 0.98–0.99; p < 0.001 and provided complete recovery of DSP toxins from standard reference materials. Blue mussels (Mytilus edulis and ribbed mussels (Geukensia demissa were found to accumulate DSP toxins above federal and international standards (160 ng g−1 during Dinophysis blooms while Eastern oysters (Crassostrea virginica and soft shell clams (Mya

  7. The apoptogenic toxin AIP56 is a metalloprotease A-B toxin that cleaves NF-κb P65.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Daniela S Silva

    2013-02-01

    Full Text Available AIP56 (apoptosis-inducing protein of 56 kDa is a major virulence factor of Photobacterium damselae piscicida (Phdp, a Gram-negative pathogen that causes septicemic infections, which are among the most threatening diseases in mariculture. The toxin triggers apoptosis of host macrophages and neutrophils through a process that, in vivo, culminates with secondary necrosis of the apoptotic cells contributing to the necrotic lesions observed in the diseased animals. Here, we show that AIP56 is a NF-κB p65-cleaving zinc-metalloprotease whose catalytic activity is required for the apoptogenic effect. Most of the bacterial effectors known to target NF-κB are type III secreted effectors. In contrast, we demonstrate that AIP56 is an A-B toxin capable of acting at distance, without requiring contact of the bacteria with the target cell. We also show that the N-terminal domain cleaves NF-κB at the Cys(39-Glu(40 peptide bond and that the C-terminal domain is involved in binding and internalization into the cytosol.

  8. ComplexContact: a web server for inter-protein contact prediction using deep learning

    KAUST Repository

    Zeng, Hong; Wang, Sheng; Zhou, Tianming; Zhao, Feifeng; Li, Xiufeng; Wu, Qing; Xu, Jinbo

    2018-01-01

    ComplexContact (http://raptorx2.uchicago.edu/ComplexContact/) is a web server for sequence-based interfacial residue-residue contact prediction of a putative protein complex. Interfacial residue-residue contacts are critical for understanding how proteins form complex and interact at residue level. When receiving a pair of protein sequences, ComplexContact first searches for their sequence homologs and builds two paired multiple sequence alignments (MSA), then it applies co-evolution analysis and a CASP-winning deep learning (DL) method to predict interfacial contacts from paired MSAs and visualizes the prediction as an image. The DL method was originally developed for intra-protein contact prediction and performed the best in CASP12. Our large-scale experimental test further shows that ComplexContact greatly outperforms pure co-evolution methods for inter-protein contact prediction, regardless of the species.

  9. ComplexContact: a web server for inter-protein contact prediction using deep learning

    KAUST Repository

    Zeng, Hong

    2018-05-20

    ComplexContact (http://raptorx2.uchicago.edu/ComplexContact/) is a web server for sequence-based interfacial residue-residue contact prediction of a putative protein complex. Interfacial residue-residue contacts are critical for understanding how proteins form complex and interact at residue level. When receiving a pair of protein sequences, ComplexContact first searches for their sequence homologs and builds two paired multiple sequence alignments (MSA), then it applies co-evolution analysis and a CASP-winning deep learning (DL) method to predict interfacial contacts from paired MSAs and visualizes the prediction as an image. The DL method was originally developed for intra-protein contact prediction and performed the best in CASP12. Our large-scale experimental test further shows that ComplexContact greatly outperforms pure co-evolution methods for inter-protein contact prediction, regardless of the species.

  10. ComplexContact: a web server for inter-protein contact prediction using deep learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zeng, Hong; Wang, Sheng; Zhou, Tianming; Zhao, Feifeng; Li, Xiufeng; Wu, Qing; Xu, Jinbo

    2018-05-22

    ComplexContact (http://raptorx2.uchicago.edu/ComplexContact/) is a web server for sequence-based interfacial residue-residue contact prediction of a putative protein complex. Interfacial residue-residue contacts are critical for understanding how proteins form complex and interact at residue level. When receiving a pair of protein sequences, ComplexContact first searches for their sequence homologs and builds two paired multiple sequence alignments (MSA), then it applies co-evolution analysis and a CASP-winning deep learning (DL) method to predict interfacial contacts from paired MSAs and visualizes the prediction as an image. The DL method was originally developed for intra-protein contact prediction and performed the best in CASP12. Our large-scale experimental test further shows that ComplexContact greatly outperforms pure co-evolution methods for inter-protein contact prediction, regardless of the species.

  11. Engineering of a Potent Recombinant Lectin-Toxin Fusion Protein to Eliminate Human Pluripotent Stem Cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tateno, Hiroaki; Saito, Sayoko

    2017-07-10

    The use of human pluripotent stem cells (hPSCs) such as human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) and human induced pluripotent stem cells (hiPSCs) in regenerative medicine is hindered by their tumorigenic potential. Previously, we developed a recombinant lectin-toxin fusion protein of the hPSC-specific lectin rBC2LCN, which has a 23 kDa catalytic domain (domain III) of Pseudomonas aeruginosa exotoxin A (rBC2LCN-PE23). This fusion protein could selectively eliminate hPSCs following its addition to the cell culture medium. Here we conjugated rBC2LCN lectin with a 38 kDa domain of exotoxin A containing domains Ib and II in addition to domain III (PE38). The developed rBC2LCN-PE38 fusion protein could eliminate 50% of 201B7 hPSCs at a concentration of 0.003 μg/mL (24 h incubation), representing an approximately 556-fold higher activity than rBC2LCN-PE23. Little or no effect on human fibroblasts, human mesenchymal stem cells, and hiPSC-derived hepatocytes was observed at concentrations lower than 1 μg/mL. Finally, we demonstrate that rBC2LCN-PE38 selectively eliminates hiPSCs from a mixed culture of hiPSCs and hiPSC-derived hepatocytes. Since rBC2LCN-PE38 can be prepared from soluble fractions of E. coli culture at a yield of 9 mg/L, rBC2LCN-PE38 represents a practical reagent to remove human pluripotent stem cells residing in cultured cells destined for transplantation.

  12. Noninvasive imaging technologies reveal edema toxin as a key virulence factor in anthrax.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dumetz, Fabien; Jouvion, Grégory; Khun, Huot; Glomski, Ian Justin; Corre, Jean-Philippe; Rougeaux, Clémence; Tang, Wei-Jen; Mock, Michèle; Huerre, Michel; Goossens, Pierre Louis

    2011-06-01

    Powerful noninvasive imaging technologies enable real-time tracking of pathogen-host interactions in vivo, giving access to previously elusive events. We visualized the interactions between wild-type Bacillus anthracis and its host during a spore infection through bioluminescence imaging coupled with histology. We show that edema toxin plays a central role in virulence in guinea pigs and during inhalational infection in mice. Edema toxin (ET), but not lethal toxin (LT), markedly modified the patterns of bacterial dissemination leading, to apparent direct dissemination to the spleen and provoking apoptosis of lymphoid cells. Each toxin alone provoked particular histological lesions in the spleen. When ET and LT are produced together during infection, a specific temporal pattern of lesion developed, with early lesions typical of LT, followed at a later stage by lesions typical of ET. Our study provides new insights into the complex spatial and temporal effects of B. anthracis toxins in the infected host, suggesting a greater role than previously suspected for ET in anthrax and suggesting that therapeutic targeting of ET contributes to protection. Copyright © 2011 American Society for Investigative Pathology. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  13. Identifying protein complex by integrating characteristic of core-attachment into dynamic PPI network.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xianjun Shen

    Full Text Available How to identify protein complex is an important and challenging task in proteomics. It would make great contribution to our knowledge of molecular mechanism in cell life activities. However, the inherent organization and dynamic characteristic of cell system have rarely been incorporated into the existing algorithms for detecting protein complexes because of the limitation of protein-protein interaction (PPI data produced by high throughput techniques. The availability of time course gene expression profile enables us to uncover the dynamics of molecular networks and improve the detection of protein complexes. In order to achieve this goal, this paper proposes a novel algorithm DCA (Dynamic Core-Attachment. It detects protein-complex core comprising of continually expressed and highly connected proteins in dynamic PPI network, and then the protein complex is formed by including the attachments with high adhesion into the core. The integration of core-attachment feature into the dynamic PPI network is responsible for the superiority of our algorithm. DCA has been applied on two different yeast dynamic PPI networks and the experimental results show that it performs significantly better than the state-of-the-art techniques in terms of prediction accuracy, hF-measure and statistical significance in biology. In addition, the identified complexes with strong biological significance provide potential candidate complexes for biologists to validate.

  14. Plant Insecticidal Toxins in Ecological Networks

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sébastien Ibanez

    2012-04-01

    Full Text Available Plant secondary metabolites play a key role in plant-insect interactions, whether constitutive or induced, C- or N-based. Anti-herbivore defences against insects can act as repellents, deterrents, growth inhibitors or cause direct mortality. In turn, insects have evolved a variety of strategies to act against plant toxins, e.g., avoidance, excretion, sequestration and degradation of the toxin, eventually leading to a co-evolutionary arms race between insects and plants and to co-diversification. Anti-herbivore defences also negatively impact mutualistic partners, possibly leading to an ecological cost of toxin production. However, in other cases toxins can also be used by plants involved in mutualistic interactions to exclude inadequate partners and to modify the cost/benefit ratio of mutualism to their advantage. When considering the whole community, toxins have an effect at many trophic levels. Aposematic insects sequester toxins to defend themselves against predators. Depending on the ecological context, toxins can either increase insects’ vulnerability to parasitoids and entomopathogens or protect them, eventually leading to self-medication. We conclude that studying the community-level impacts of plant toxins can provide new insights into the synthesis between community and evolutionary ecology.

  15. Plant insecticidal toxins in ecological networks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ibanez, Sébastien; Gallet, Christiane; Després, Laurence

    2012-04-01

    Plant secondary metabolites play a key role in plant-insect interactions, whether constitutive or induced, C- or N-based. Anti-herbivore defences against insects can act as repellents, deterrents, growth inhibitors or cause direct mortality. In turn, insects have evolved a variety of strategies to act against plant toxins, e.g., avoidance, excretion, sequestration and degradation of the toxin, eventually leading to a co-evolutionary arms race between insects and plants and to co-diversification. Anti-herbivore defences also negatively impact mutualistic partners, possibly leading to an ecological cost of toxin production. However, in other cases toxins can also be used by plants involved in mutualistic interactions to exclude inadequate partners and to modify the cost/benefit ratio of mutualism to their advantage. When considering the whole community, toxins have an effect at many trophic levels. Aposematic insects sequester toxins to defend themselves against predators. Depending on the ecological context, toxins can either increase insects' vulnerability to parasitoids and entomopathogens or protect them, eventually leading to self-medication. We conclude that studying the community-level impacts of plant toxins can provide new insights into the synthesis between community and evolutionary ecology.

  16. A plant virus movement protein forms ringlike complexes with the major nucleolar protein, fibrillarin, in vitro.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Canetta, Elisabetta; Kim, Sang Hyon; Kalinina, Natalia O; Shaw, Jane; Adya, Ashok K; Gillespie, Trudi; Brown, John W S; Taliansky, Michael

    2008-02-29

    Fibrillarin, one of the major proteins of the nucleolus, has methyltransferase activity directing 2'-O-ribose methylation of rRNA and snRNAs and is required for rRNA processing. The ability of the plant umbravirus, groundnut rosette virus, to move long distances through the phloem, the specialized plant vascular system, has been shown to strictly depend on the interaction of one of its proteins, the ORF3