[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Certain strains of Clostridium difficile produce the ADP-ribosyltransferase CDT, which is a binary actin ADP-ribosylating toxin. The toxin consists of the binding component CDTb, which mediates receptor binding and cellular uptake, and the enzyme component CDTa. Here we studied the enzyme component (CDTa) of the toxin using the binding component of Clostridium perfringens iota toxin (Ib), which is interchangeable with CDTb as a transport component. Ib was used because CDTb was not expressed as a recombinant protein in Escherichia coli. Similar to iota toxin, CDTa ADP-ribosylates nonmuscle and skeletal muscle actin. The N-terminal part of CDTa (CDTa1-240) competes with full-length CDTa for binding to the iota toxin binding component. The C-terminal part (CDTa244-263) harbors the enzyme activity but was much less active than the full-length CDTa. Changes of Glu428 and Glu430 to glutamine, Ser388 to alanine, and Arg345 to lysine blocked ADP-ribosyltransferase activity. Comparison of CDTa with C. perfringens iota toxin and Clostridium botulinum C2 toxin revealed full enzyme activity of the fragment Ia208-413 but loss of activity of several N-terminally deleted C2I proteins including C2I103-431, C2I190-431, and C2I30-431. The data indicate that CDTa belongs to the iota toxin subfamily of binary actin ADP-ribosylating toxins with respect to interaction with the binding component and substrate specificity. It shares typical conserved amino acid residues with iota toxin and C2 toxin that are suggested to be involved in NAD-binding and/or catalytic activity. The enzyme components of CDT, iota toxin, and C2 toxin differ with respect to the minimal structural requirement for full enzyme activity.
Infection and Immunity 11/2001; 69(10):6004-11. · 4.07 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Clostridium difficile toxin B (269 kDa), which is one of the causative agents of antibiotic-associated diarrhea and pseudomembranous colitis, inactivates Rho GTPases by glucosylation. Here we studied the uptake and membrane interaction of the toxin with eukaryotic target cells. Bafilomycin A1, which prevents acidification of endosomal compartments, blocked the cellular uptake of toxin B in Chinese hamster ovary cells cells. Extracellular acidification (pH </= 5.2) induced uptake of toxin B into the cytosol even in the presence of bafilomycin A1. Toxin B increased (86)Rb(+) release when preloaded Chinese hamster ovary cells were exposed to low pH (pH </= 5.6) for 5 min. Release of (86)Rb(+) depended on the concentration of toxin B and on the pH of the extracellular medium. An antibody directed against the holotoxin prevented channel formation, whereas an antibody against the N-terminal enzyme domain was without effect. The N-terminally truncated toxin B fragment consisting of amino acids 547-2366 increased (86)Rb(+) efflux when cells were exposed to low pH. Toxin B also induced pH-dependent channel formation in artificial lipid bilayer membranes. Clostridium sordellii lethal toxin, another member of the family of large clostridial cytotoxins, also induced increased (86)Rb(+) release at low pH. The results suggest that large clostridial cytotoxins including C. difficile toxin B and C. sordellii lethal toxin undergo structural changes at low pH of endosomes that are accompanied by membrane insertion and channel formation.
Journal of Biological Chemistry 04/2001; 276(14):10670-6. · 4.65 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Clostridium novyi alpha-toxin belongs to the family of large clostridial cytotoxins which act on cells through the modification of small GTP-binding proteins. We present here an analysis of the catalytic domain of alpha-toxin. A NH(2)-terminal 551-amino-acid fragment, alpha 551, was found to contain the full enzyme activity of the holotoxin, whereas a slightly shortened fragment encompassing 509 amino acids showed no detectable enzyme activity. Further characterization of the enzymatically active fragment alpha 551 revealed a substrate specificity for both UDP-N-acetylglucosamine and UDP-glucose. A Michaelis-Menten constant of 17 microM was determined for the substrate UDP-N-acetylglucosamine, while that for UDP-glucose was about 20 times higher, indicating a weaker affinity of the toxin for the latter substrate. Mutation of the aspartic acids of a conserved motif DXD within alpha 551 reduced enzyme activity >700-fold and inhibited cytotoxicity after microinjection in cells. Inhibition of enzyme activity of the DXD mutant could be partially overcome by increased concentrations of manganese ions, suggesting the involvement of these aspartic acids in Mn(2+) binding. By construction of chimeras of enzymatically active fragments of C. sordellii lethal toxin and C. novyi alpha-toxin, we located the region involved in nucleotide-sugar specificity to amino acids 133 through 517.
Infection and Immunity 11/2000; 68(11):6378-83. · 4.07 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The role of the cytoskeleton in the activity of GABA(A) receptors was investigated in cultured hippocampal neurons. Receptor currents were measured with the whole-cell patch-clamp technique during repetitive stimulation with 1 microm muscimol. After destruction of the microtubular system with nocodazol, muscimol-induced currents showed a rundown by 78%. A similar rundown was observed when actin fibers were destroyed with latrunculin B or C2 toxin of Clostridium botulinum. Because the small GTPases of the Rho family RhoA, Rac1, and Cdc42 are known to control the organization of actin fibers, we investigated their possible involvement. Inactivation of the GTPases with clostridial toxins, as well as intracellular application of recombinant Rho GTPases, indicated that active Rac1 was necessary for full GABA(A) receptor activity. Immunocytochemical labeling of the receptors showed that the disappearance of receptor clusters in the somatic membrane as induced by muscimol stimulation was enhanced by Rac1 inactivation. It is suggested that Rac1 participates in the regulation of GABA(A) receptor clustering and/or recycling.
Journal of Neuroscience 10/2000; 20(18):6743-51. · 6.91 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Large clostridial cytotoxins catalyze the glucosylation of Rho/Ras GTPases using UDP-glucose as a cosubstrate. By site-directed mutagenesis of Clostridium sordellii lethal toxin and Clostridium difficile toxin B fragments, we identified tryptophan 102, which is located in a conserved region within the catalytic domain of all clostridial cytotoxins, to be crucial for UDP-glucose binding. Exchange of Trp-102 with alanine decreased the glucosyltransferase activity by about 1,000-fold and blocked cytotoxic activity after microinjection. Replacement of Trp-102 by tyrosine caused a 100-fold reduction in enzyme activity, indicating a partial compensation of the tryptophan function by tyrosine. Decrease in glucosyltransferase and glycohydrolase activity was caused predominantly by an increase in the K(m) for UDP-glucose of these mutants. The data indicate that the conserved tryptophan residue is implicated in the binding of the cosubstrate UDP-glucose by large clostridial cytotoxins. Data bank searches revealed different groups of proteins sharing the recently identified DXD motif (Busch, C., Hofmann, F., Selzer, J., Munro, J., Jeckel, D., and Aktories, K. (1998) J. Biol. Chem. 273, 19566-19572) and a conserved region defined by a tryptophan residue equivalent to Trp-102 of C. sordellii lethal toxin. From our findings, we propose a novel family of glycosyltransferases which includes both prokaryotic and eukaryotic proteins.
Journal of Biological Chemistry 06/2000; 275(18):13228-34. · 4.65 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: A fragment of the N-terminal 546 amino acid residues of Clostridium sordellii lethal toxin possesses full enzyme activity and glucosylates Rho and Ras GTPases in vitro. Here we identified several amino acid residues in C. sordellii lethal toxin that are essential for the enzyme activity of the active toxin fragment. Exchange of aspartic acid at position 286 or 288 with alanine or asparagine decreased glucosyltransferase activity by about 5000-fold and completely blocked glucohydrolase activity. No enzyme activity was detected with the double mutant D286A/D288A. Whereas the wild-type fragment of C. sordellii lethal toxin was labeled by azido-UDP-glucose after UV irradiation, mutation of the DXD motif prevented radiolabeling. At high concentrations (10 mM) of manganese ions, the transferase activities of the D286A and D288A mutants but not that of wild-type fragment were increased by about 20-fold. The exchange of Asp270 and Arg273 reduced glucosyltransferase activity by about 200-fold and blocked glucohydrolase activity. The data indicate that the DXD motif, which is highly conserved in all large clostridial cytotoxins and also in a large number of glycosyltransferases, is functionally essential for the enzyme activity of the toxins and may participate in coordination of the divalent cation and/or in the binding of UDP-glucose.
Journal of Biological Chemistry 08/1998; 273(31):19566-72. · 4.65 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Monoglucosylation of low molecular mass GTPases is an important post-translational modification by which microbes interfere with eukaryotic cell signaling. Ha-Ras is monoglucosylated at effector domain amino acid threonine 35 by Clostridium sordellii lethal toxin, resulting in a blockade of the downstream mitogen-activated protein kinase cascade. To understand the molecular consequences of this modification, effects of glucosylation on each step of the GTPase cycle of Ras were analyzed. Whereas nucleotide binding was not significantly altered, intrinsic GTPase activity was markedly decreased, and GTPase stimulation by the GTPase-activating protein p120(GAP) and neurofibromin NF-1 was completely blocked, caused by failure to bind to glucosylated Ras. Guanine nucleotide exchange factor (Cdc25)-catalyzed GTP loading was decreased, but not completely inhibited. A dominant-negative property of modified Ras to sequester exchange factor was not detectable. However, the crucial step in downstream signaling, Ras-effector coupling, was completely blocked. The Kd for the interaction between Ras.GTP and the Ras-binding domain of Raf was 15 nM, whereas glucosylation increased the Kd to >1 mM. Because the affinity of Ras.GDP for Raf (Kd = 22 microM) is too low to allow functional interaction, a glucose moiety at threonine 35 of Ras seems to block completely the interaction with Raf. The net effect of lethal toxin-catalyzed glucosylation of Ras is the complete blockade of Ras downstream signaling.
Journal of Biological Chemistry 06/1998; 273(26):16134-9. · 4.65 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Clostridium sordellii lethal toxin is a member of the family of large clostridial cytotoxins that glucosylate small GTPases. In contrast to Clostridium difficile toxins A and B, which exclusively modify Rho subfamily proteins, C. sordellii lethal toxin also glucosylates Ras subfamily proteins. By deletion analysis and construction of chimeric fusion proteins of C. sordellii lethal toxin and C. difficile toxin B, we localized the enzyme activity of the lethal toxin to the N terminus of the holotoxin and identified the region involved in protein substrate specificity. The toxin fragment of the N-terminal 546 amino acid residues of C. sordellii lethal toxin glucosylated Rho and Ras subfamily proteins, as the holotoxin did. Deletion of a further 30 amino acid residues from the C terminus of this active fragment drastically reduced glucotransferase activity and blocked glucohydrolase activity. Exchange of amino acid residues 364 through 516 of lethal toxin for those in the active toxin B fragment (1 to 546) allowed glucosylation of Ras subfamily proteins. In contrast, the chimera with amino acids 1 to 364 from toxin B, 365 to 468 from lethal toxin, and 469 to 546 from toxin B exhibited markedly reduced modification of Ras subfamily proteins, whereas modification of Rac and Cdc42 was hardly changed. The data indicate that the region of amino acid residues 364 through 516 primarily defines the substrate specificity of C. sordellii lethal toxin.
Infection and Immunity 04/1998; 66(3):1076-81. · 4.07 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Clostridium difficile toxin B that is one of the largest cytotoxins (270 kDa) known acts on Rho subfamily proteins by monoglucosylation (Just, I., Selzer, J., Wilm, M., von Eichel-Streiber, C., Mann, M., and Aktories, K. (1995) Nature 375, 500-503). By deletion analysis we identified the enzyme and cytotoxic activity of the toxin to be located at the N terminus of the holotoxin. A 63-kDa fragment of toxin B covering the first 546 amino acid residues glucosylated Rho, Rac, and Cdc42, but not Ras, by using UDP-glucose as a cosubstrate. As known for the holotoxin, glucosylation by the toxin fragment was favored with the GDP-bound form of the low molecular mass GTPases. Microinjection of the toxin fragment into NIH-3T3 cells induced rounding up of cells and redistribution of the actin cytoskeleton. In contrast, a toxin fragment encompassing the first 516 amino acid residues was at least 1000-fold less active than toxin fragment 1-546 and cytotoxically inactive. The data give direct evidence for location of the enzyme activity of C. difficile toxin B at the N-terminal 546 amino acids residues and indicate a functionally and/or structurally important role of the region from amino acid residues 516 through 546 for enzyme and cytotoxic activities.
Journal of Biological Chemistry 05/1997; 272(17):11074-8. · 4.65 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The influence of different ADP-ribosylating and glucosylating cytotoxins on stimulated protein tyrosine phosphorylation and secretion in rat basophilic leukemia (RBL) cells was studied. Treatment of RBL cells with Clostridium botulinum C2 toxin, which specifically ADP-ribosylated monomeric G-actin and caused complete depolymerization of the actin cytoskeleton in intact cells, inhibited Fc epsilon RI receptor-mediated tyrosine phosphorylation of various proteins in a time- and concentration-dependent manner with maximal effects at 100 ng/ml C2I and 200 ng/ml C2I. C2 toxin (10 ng/ml C2I and 20 ng/ml C2II) increased antigen- or calcium ionophore (A23187)-stimulated [3H]serotonin release maximally by about 3 fold. Clostridium botulinum C3, which ADP-ribosylated Rho in intact RBL cells, had no effect on protein tyrosine phosphorylation and stimulated secretion. In contrast, the cytotoxic Clostridium difficile toxin B (ToxB), which glucosylated the Rho-subtype family members RhoA and Cdc42, blocked or reduced antigen- or calcium ionophore-mediated [3H]serotonin release, respectively, and decreased tyrosine phosphorylation of a 110 kDa protein. The data indicate that different actin pools control tyrosine phosphorylation and secretion in RBL cells and suggest that Rho subfamily proteins regulate secretion independently of the actin cytoskeleton.
Advances in experimental medicine and biology 02/1997; 419:349-53. · 1.83 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The hemorrhagic toxin (HT) from Clostridium sordellii is pharmacologically related to Clostridium difficile toxins A and B and Clostridium sordellii lethal toxin which have been recently identified as mono-glucosyl-transferases. Here we report that HT, which is coexpressed with lethal toxin, is also a glucosyltransferase. Whereas lethal toxin glucosylates the Rho subfamily proteins Rac and Cdc42 and the Ras subfamily proteins H-Ras and Rap, the substrate specificity of HT is strictly confined to the Rho subfamily proteins Rho, Rac and Cdc42. Comparable to lethal toxin, transferase activity of HT is stimulated by Mn2+. Acceptor amino acid in Rho was identified by mutagenesis as threonine-37. C. sordellii HT is a novel member of the family of clostridial mono-glucosyl-transferases, a family which modifies the Rho and Ras GTPases.
Biochemical and Biophysical Research Communications 01/1997; 229(2):370-4. · 2.41 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The lethal and edema-inducing alpha-toxin from Clostridium novyi causes rounding up of cultured cell lines by redistribution of the actin cytoskeleton. alpha-Toxin belongs to the family of large clostridial cytotoxins that encompasses Clostridium difficile toxin A and B and the lethal toxin from Clostridium sordellii. Toxin A and toxin B have been recently identified as monoglucosyltransferases to modify the low molecular mass GTPases of the Rho subfamily (Just, I., Selzer, J., Wilm, M., Von Eichel-Streiber, C., Mann, M., and Aktories, K. (1995) Nature 375, 500-503 and Just, I., Wilm, M., Selzer, J., Rex, G., Von Eichel-Streiber, C., Mann, M., and Aktories, K. (1995) J. Biol. Chem. 270, 13932-13936). We report here the identification of the alpha-toxin-catalyzed modification of Rho. Using electrospray mass spectrometry, the mass of the modification was determined as 203 Da, consistent with a N-acetyl-hexosamine moiety. UDP-N-acetyl-glucosamine selectively served as cosubstrate for alpha-toxin-catalyzed modification into the Rho subfamily proteins Rho, Rac, Cdc42, and RhoG. The acceptor amino acid of N-acetyl-glucosaminylation was identified by mutagenesis as Thr-37 in Rho (equivalent to Thr-35 in Rac/Cdc42), which is located in the effector domain of the GTPases. C. novyi alpha-toxin seems to mediate its cytotoxic effects on cells by mimicking endogenous post-translational modification of cellular proteins.
Journal of Biological Chemistry 11/1996; 271(41):25173-7. · 4.65 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The lethal toxin (LT) from Clostridium sordellii belongs to the family of large clostridial cytotoxins causing morphological alterations in cultured cell lines accompanied by destruction of the actin cytoskeleton. C. sordellii LT exhibits 90% homology to Clostridium difficile toxin B, which has been recently identified as a monoglucosyltransferase (Just, I., Selzer, J., Wilm, M., von Eichel-Streiber, C., Mann, M., and Aktories, K. (1995) Nature 375, 500-503). We report here that LT too is a glucosyltransferase, which uses UDP-glucose as cosubstrate to modify low molecular mass GTPases. LT selectively modifies Rac and Ras, whereas the substrate specificity of toxin B is confined to the Rho subfamily proteins Rho, Rac, and Cdc42, which participate in the regulation of the actin cytoskeleton. In Rac, both toxin B and LT share the same acceptor amino acid, threonine 35. Glucosylation of Ras by LT results in inhibition of the epidermal growth factor-stimulated p42/p44 MAP-kinase signal pathway. LT is the first bacterial toxin to inactivate Ras in intact cells.
Journal of Biological Chemistry 05/1996; 271(17):10149-53. · 4.65 Impact Factor