A pH-dependent conformational change in the B-subunit pentamer of Escherichia coli heat-labile enterotoxin: Structural basis and possible functional role for a conserved feature of the AB(5) toxin family

Ruddock, Lloyd W. and Webb, Helen M. and Ruston, Stephen P. and Cheesman, Caroline and Freedman, Robert B. and Hirst, Timothy R. (1996) A pH-dependent conformational change in the B-subunit pentamer of Escherichia coli heat-labile enterotoxin: Structural basis and possible functional role for a conserved feature of the AB(5) toxin family. Biochemistry, 35 (50). pp. 16069-16076. ISSN 0006-2960. (The full text of this publication is not available from this repository)

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Official URL
http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/bi961865l

Abstract

The non-covalently associated B-subunit moieties of AB(5) toxins, such as cholera toxin and related diarrheagenic enterotoxins, exhibit exceptional pH stability and remain pentameric at pH values as low as 2.0. Here, we investigate the structural basis of a pH-dependent conformational change which occurs within the B-5 structure of Escherichia coli heat-labile enterotoxin (EtxB) at around pH 5.0. The use of far-UV CD and fluorescence spectroscopy showed that EtxB pentamers undergo a fully reversible pH-dependent conformational change with a pK(a) of 4.9 +/- 0.1 (R(2) = 0.999) or 5.13 +/- 0.01 (R(2) = 0.999), respectively, This renders the pentamer susceptible to SDS-mediated disassembly and decreases its thermal stability by 18 degrees C. A comparison of the pH-dependence of the structural change in EtxB(5), with that of a mutant containing a Ser substitution at His 57, revealed that the pK(a) of the conformational change was shifted from ca. 5.1 to 4.4. This finding suggests that protonation of the imidazole side chain of His 57 might facilitate disruption of a spatially adjacent salt bridge, located between Glu 51 and Lys 91 in each B-subunit, thus triggering the conformational change in the pentameric structure. The pH-dependent conformational change was found to be inhibited when B-subunits bound to monosialoganglioside, G(M1); and to have no effect on the stability of interaction between A- and B-subunits within the AB(5) complex. This suggests that the conformational change is unlikely to have a direct involvement in toxicity. Conservation of the pH-dependent conformational change in the AB(5) toxin family, combined with the potential exposure of the hydrophobic core of beta-barrel in the monomeric units, leads to the proposal that the conformational change may be the common feature that ensures the secretion of these proteins from the Vibrionaceae.

Item Type: Article
Subjects: Q Science > QD Chemistry
Q Science > QP Physiology (Living systems) > QP506 Molecular biology
Divisions: Faculties > Science Technology and Medical Studies > School of Biosciences
Depositing User: F.D. Zabet
Date Deposited: 07 May 2009 14:47
Last Modified: 16 Jun 2014 14:03
Resource URI: http://kar.kent.ac.uk/id/eprint/18772 (The current URI for this page, for reference purposes)
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