[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Many lipoproteins reside in the outer membrane (OM) of Gram-negative bacteria, and their biogenesis is dependent on the Lol (localization of lipoproteins) system. The periplasmic chaperone LolA accepts OM-destined lipoproteins that are released from the inner membrane by the LolCDE complex and transfers them to the OM receptor LolB. The exact nature of the LolA-lipoprotein complex is still unknown. The crystal structure of Escherichia coli LolA features an open beta-barrel covered by alpha helices that together constitute a hydrophobic cavity, which would allow the binding of one acyl chain. However, OM lipoproteins contain three acyl chains, and the stoichiometry of the LolA-lipoprotein complex is 1:1. Here we present the crystal structure of Pseudomonas aeruginosa LolA that projects clear hydrophobic surface patches. Since these patches are large enough to accommodate acyl chains, their role in lipoprotein binding was investigated. Several LolA mutant proteins were created, and their functionality was assessed by studying their capacity to release lipoproteins produced in sphaeroplasts. Interruption of the largest hydrophobic patch completely destroyed the lipoprotein-releasing capacity of LolA, while interruption of smaller patches apparently reduced efficiency. Thus, the results show a new lipoprotein transport model that places (some of) the acyl chains on the hydrophobic surface patches.
Journal of Molecular Biology 09/2010; 401(5):921-30. · 3.91 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Pseudomonas aeruginosa is a Gram-negative opportunistic pathogen able to cause acute or chronic infections. Like all other Pseudomonas species, P. aeruginosa has a large genome, >6 Mb, encoding more than 5000 proteins. Many proteins are localized in membranes, among them lipoproteins, which can be found tethered to the inner or the outer membrane. Lipoproteins are translocated from the cytoplasm and their N-terminal signal peptide is cleaved by the signal peptidase II, which recognizes a specific sequence called the lipobox just before the first cysteine of the mature lipoprotein. A majority of lipoproteins are transported to the outer membrane via the LolCDEAB system, while those having an avoidance signal remain in the inner membrane. In Escherichia coli, the presence of an aspartate residue after the cysteine is sufficient to cause the lipoprotein to remain in the inner membrane, while in P. aeruginosa the situation is more complex and involves amino acids at position +3 and +4 after the cysteine. Previous studies indicated that there are 185 lipoproteins in P. aeruginosa, with a minority in the inner membrane. A reanalysis led to a reduction of this number to 175, while new retention signals could be predicted, increasing the percentage of inner-membrane lipoproteins to 20 %. About one-third (62 out of 175) of the lipoprotein genes are present in the 17 Pseudomonas genomes sequenced, meaning that these genes are part of the core genome of the genus. Lipoproteins can be classified into families, including those outer-membrane proteins having a structural role or involved in efflux of antibiotics. Comparison of various microarray data indicates that exposure to epithelial cells or some antibiotics, or conversion to mucoidy, has a major influence on the expression of lipoprotein genes in P. aeruginosa.