P. van Ulsen
T. den Blaauwen
- A conserved aromatic residue in the autochaperone domain of the autotransporter Hbp is critical for initiation of outer membrane translocation
- The Journal of Biological Chemistry
- Volume | Issue number
- 285 | 49
- Pages (from-to)
- Document type
- Faculty of Science (FNWI)
- Swammerdam Institute for Life Sciences (SILS)
Autotransporters are bacterial virulence factors that share a common mechanism by which they are transported to the cell surface. They consist of an N-terminal passenger domain and a C-terminal β-barrel, which has been implicated in translocation of the passenger across the outer membrane (OM). The mechanism of passenger translocation and folding is still unclear but involves a conserved region at the C terminus of the passenger domain, the so-called autochaperone domain. This domain functions in the stepwise translocation process and in the folding of the passenger domain after translocation. In the autotransporter hemoglobin protease (Hbp), the autochaperone domain consists of the last rung of the β-helix and a capping domain. To examine the role of this region, we have mutated several conserved aromatic residues that are oriented toward the core of the β-helix. We found that non-conservative mutations affected secretion with Trp1015 in the cap region as the most critical residue. Substitution at this position yielded a DegP-sensitive intermediate that is located at the periplasmic side of the OM. Further analysis revealed that Trp1015 is most likely required for initiation of processive folding of the β-helix at the cell surface, which drives sequential translocation of the Hbp passenger across the OM.
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