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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Differential functionalities of amphiphilic peptide segments of the cell-septation penicillin-binding protein 3 of Escherichia coli.

The class B M1-V577 penicillin-binding protein (PBP) 3 of Escherichia coli consists of a M1-L39 membrane anchor (bearing a cytosolic tail) that is linked via a G40-S70 intervening peptide to an R71-I236 non-catalytic module (containing the conserved motifs 1-3) itself linked via motif 4 to a D237-V577 catalytic module (containing the conserved motifs 5-7 of the penicilloyl serine transferases superfamily). It has been proposed that during cell septation the peptidoglycan crosslinking activity of the acyl transferase module of PBP3 is regulated by the associated M1-I236 polypeptide itself in interaction with other components of the divisome. The fold adopted by the R71-V577 polypeptide of PBP3 has been modelled by reference to the corresponding R76-S634 polypeptide of the class B Streptococcus pneumoniae PBP2x. Based on these data and the results of site-directed mutagenesis of motifs 1-3 and of peptide segments of high amphiphilicity (identified from hydrophobic moment plots), the M1-I236 polypeptide of PBP3 appears to be precisely designed to work in the way proposed. The membrane anchor and the G40-S70 sequence (containing the G57-Q66 peptide segment) upstream from the non-catalytic module have the information ensuring that PBP3 undergoes proper insertion within the divisome at the cell septation site. Motif 1 and the I74-L82 overlapping peptide segment, motif 2 and the H160-G172 overlapping peptide segment, and the G188-D197 motif 3 are located at or close to the intermodule junction. They contain the information ensuring that PBP3 folds correctly and the acyl transferase catalytic centre adopts the active configuration. The E206-V217 peptide segment is exposed at the surface of the non-catalytic module. It has the information ensuring that PBP3 fulfils its cell septation activity within the fully complemented divisome.[1]


  1. Differential functionalities of amphiphilic peptide segments of the cell-septation penicillin-binding protein 3 of Escherichia coli. Marrec-Fairley, M., Piette, A., Gallet, X., Brasseur, R., Hara, H., Fraipont, C., Ghuysen, J.M., Nguyen-Distèche, M. Mol. Microbiol. (2000) [Pubmed]
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