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

A gene at 59 minutes on the Escherichia coli chromosome encodes a lipoprotein with unusual amino acid repeat sequences.

We report a 1.432-kb DNA sequence at 59 min on the Escherichia coli chromosome that connects the published sequences of the pcm gene for the isoaspartyl protein methyltransferase and that of the katF or rpoS (katF/rpoS) gene for a sigma factor involved in stationary-phase gene expression. Analysis of the DNA sequence reveals an open reading frame potentially encoding a polypeptide of 379 amino acids. The polypeptide sequence includes a consensus bacterial lipidation sequence present at residues 23 to 26 (Leu-Ala-Gly-Cys), four octapeptide proline- and glutamine-rich repeats of consensus sequence QQPQIQPV, and four heptapeptide threonine- and serine-rich repeats of consensus sequence PTA(S,T)TTE. The deduced amino acid sequence, especially in the C-terminal region, is similar to that of the Haemophilus somnus LppB lipoprotein outer membrane antigen (40% overall sequence identity; 77% identity in last 95 residues). The LppB lipoprotein binds Congo red dye and has been proposed to be a virulence determinant in H. somnus. Utilizing a plasmid construct with the E. coli gene under the control of a phage T7 promoter, we demonstrate the lipidation of this gene product by the incorporation of [3H]palmitic acid into a 42-kDa polypeptide. We also show that treatment of E. coli cells with globomycin, an inhibitor of the lipoprotein signal peptidase, results in the accumulation of a 46-kDa precursor. We thus designate the protein NlpD (new lipoprotein D). E. coli cells overexpressing NlpD bind Congo red dye, suggesting a common function with the H. somnus LppB protein. Disruption of the chromosomal E. coli nlpD gene by insertional mutagenesis results in decreased stationary-phase survival after 7 days.[1]


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