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Point mutants of EHEC intimin that diminish Tir recognition and actin pedestal formation highlight a putative Tir binding pocket

Department of Molecular Genetics and Microbiology, University of Massachusetts Medical School, Worchester, MA, USA.
Molecular Microbiology (Impact Factor: 5.03). 10/2002; 45(6):1557-73. DOI: 10.1046/j.1365-2958.2002.03137.x
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ABSTRACT Attachment to host cells by enterohaemorrhagic Escherichia coli (EHEC) is associated with the formation of a highly organized cytoskeletal structure containing filamentous actin, termed an attaching and effacing (AE) lesion. Intimin, an outer membrane protein of EHEC, is required for the formation of AE lesions, as is Tir, a bacterial protein that is translocated into the host cell to function as a receptor for intimin. We established a yeast two-hybrid assay for intimin-Tir interaction and, after random mutagenesis, isolated 24 point mutants in intimin, which disrupted Tir recognition in this system. Analysis of 11 point mutants revealed a correlation between recognition of recombinant Tir and the ability to trigger AE lesions. Many of the mutations fell within a 50-residue region near the C-terminus of intimin. Alanine-scanning mutagenesis of this region revealed four residues (Ser890, Thr909, Asn916 and Asn927) that are critical for Tir recognition. Mapping the sequences of EHEC intimin and Tir onto the crystal structure of the intimin-Tir complex of enteropathogenic E. coli predicts that each of these four intimin residues lies at the intimin-Tir interface and contributes to a pocket that interacts with Ile298 of EHEC Tir. Thus, this genetic approach to intimin function both identified residues critical for Tir binding and demonstrated a correlation between the ability to bind Tir and the ability to trigger actin focusing.

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Available from: Moses M Prabu, Oct 08, 2014
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    • "We next characterized the ability of C. rodentiumΔeae expressing EHEC intimin to attach to host cells that express high levels of Tir on their surface, which more sensitively assesses Tir–intimin interactions compared to conventional infection assays (Liu et al., 2002). Pre-infection (i.e., " priming " ) of cells with an EPECΔeae mutant permits efficient delivery of Tir to the eukaryotic cell (Rosenshine et al., 1996; Liu et al., 1999). "
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    ABSTRACT: Upon binding to intestinal epithelial cells, enterohemorrhagic E. coli (EHEC), enteropathogenic E. coli (EPEC), and Citrobacter rodentium trigger formation of actin pedestals beneath bound bacteria. Pedestal formation has been associated with enhanced colonization, and requires intimin, an adhesin that binds to the bacterial effector Tir, which is translocated to the host cell membrane and promotes bacterial adherence and pedestal formation. Intimin has been suggested to also promote cell adhesion by binding one or more host receptors, and allelic differences in intimin have been associated with differences in tissue and host specificity. We assessed the function of EHEC, EPEC, or C. rodentium intimin, or a set of intimin derivatives with varying Tir-binding abilities in animal models of infection. We found that EPEC and EHEC intimin were functionally indistinguishable during infection of gnotobiotic piglets by EHEC, and that EPEC, EHEC, and C. rodentium intimin were functionally indistinguishable during infection of C57BL/6 mice by C. rodentium. A derivative of EHEC intimin that bound Tir but did not promote robust pedestal formation on cultured cells was unable to promote C. rodentium colonization of conventional mice, indicating that the ability to trigger actin assembly, not simply to bind Tir, is required for intimin-mediated intestinal colonization. Interestingly, streptomycin pre-treatment of mice eliminated the requirement for Tir but not intimin during colonization, and intimin derivatives that were defective in Tir-binding still promoted colonization of these mice. These results indicate that EPEC, EHEC, and C. rodentium are functionally interchangeable during infection of gnotobiotic piglets or conventional C57BL/6 mice, and that whereas the ability to trigger Tir-mediated pedestal formation is essential for colonization of conventional mice, intimin provides a Tir-independent activity during colonization of streptomycin pre-treated mice.
    Frontiers in Microbiology 01/2012; 3:11. DOI:10.3389/fmicb.2012.00011 · 3.94 Impact Factor
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    • "The two hybrid analyses were performed as described (Liu, Radhakrishnan et al. 2002) . "
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    ABSTRACT: Enterohemorrhagic Escherichia coli O157:H7 (EHEC) is an attaching and effacing pathogen that upon attachment to host cells, induce characteristic attaching and effacing lesions and formation of F-actin rich pedestals beneath sites of bacterial attachment. EHEC harbors a Type III secretion system through which it delivers dozens of effectors into the host cell. The two secreted effectors critical for EHEC-mediated actin pedestal formation are the translocated intimin receptor (Tir) and EspFU. EspFU consists of an N-terminal secretion signal and a C-terminus containing six tandem 47-residue proline-rich repeats, each of which can bind and activate the actin nucleation promoting factor N-WASP. Structural and functional analyses described here have identified the mechanism of N-WASP activation by EspFU and the minimal domains and specific residues required for this activity. While EspFU and Tir are the only bacterial effectors required for F-actin pedestal formation, recruitment of EspFU to Tir is mediated by an unidentified putative host factor. To identify the host factor responsible for linking these two effectors, a combination of in vitro and functional assays were used to identify the host factor, IRTKS and the residues required for these interactions were defined. Further, the presence of at least two 47-residue repeats in all characterized clinical isolates of canonical EHEC strains led us to address the minimal requirements for EspFU functional domains to promote recruitment to Tir and N-WASP activation. Here we show that two proline-rich elements of EspFU are required for recruitment of EspFU by IRTKS to sites of bacterial attachment. Furthermore, once artificially clustered at the membrane, a single N-WASP binding element of EspFU can induce actin pedestal formation.
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    • "Intimin is required for pedestal formation by EPEC (Jerse et al., 1990), and after translocation of Tir and other Esps, the interaction of intimin-coated particles with host cells triggers localized actin assembly into pedestals (Rosenshine et al., 1996; Liu et al., 1999). Intimin binding to endogenous mammalian receptors may also contribute to pedestal formation (Frankel et al., 2001), but the ability of intimin mutants to bind to Tir generally correlates with their ability to promote actin assembly (Liu et al., 2002). "
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