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Lipid interaction of diphtheria toxin and mutants with altered fragment B. 2. Hydrophobic photolabelling and cell intoxication.

Papini, E; Schiavo, G; Tomasi, M; Colombatti, M; Rappuoli, R; Montecucco, C; (1987) Lipid interaction of diphtheria toxin and mutants with altered fragment B. 2. Hydrophobic photolabelling and cell intoxication. Eur J Biochem , 169 (3) pp. 637-644.

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Abstract

The membrane insertion of diphtheria toxin and of its B chain mutants crm 45, crm 228 and crm 1001 has been followed by hydrophobic photolabelling with photoactivatable phosphatidylcholine analogues. It was found that diphtheria toxin binds to the lipid bilayer surface at neutral pH while at low pH both its A and B chains also interact with the hydrocarbon chains of phospholipids. The pH dependence of photolabelling of the two protomers is different: the pKa of fragment B is around 5.9 while that of fragment A is around 5.2. The latter value correlates with the pH of half-maximal intoxication of cells incubated with the toxin in acidic mediums. These results suggest that fragment B penetrates into the bilayer first and assists the insertion of fragment A and that the lipid insertion of fragment B is not the rate-controlling step in the process of membrane translocation of diphtheria toxin. crm 45 behaves as diphtheria toxin in the photolabelling assay but, nonetheless, it is found to be three orders of magnitude less toxic than diphtheria toxin on acid-treated cells, suggesting that the 12-kDa COOH-terminal segment of diphtheria toxin is important not only for its binding to the cell receptor but also for the membrane translocation of the toxin. It is suggested that crm 1001 is non-toxic because of a defect in its membrane translocation which occurs at a lower extent and at a lower pH than that of the native toxin; as a consequence crm 1001 may be unable to escape from the endosome lumen into the cytoplasm before the fusion of the endosome with lysosomes.

Type: Article
Title: Lipid interaction of diphtheria toxin and mutants with altered fragment B. 2. Hydrophobic photolabelling and cell intoxication.
Location: England
Keywords: Animals, Cell Line, Cell Survival, Diphtheria Toxin, Hydrogen-Ion Concentration, Lipid Bilayers, Lipid Metabolism, Peptide Fragments, Permeability, Phosphatidylcholines, Photochemistry, Temperature
URI: http://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1449932
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