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A Peptidomimetic Antibiotic Interacts with the Periplasmic Domain of LptD from Pseudomonas aeruginosa

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journal contribution
posted on 22.01.2018, 23:07 by Gloria Andolina, László-Csaba Bencze, Katja Zerbe, Maik Müller, Jessica Steinmann, Harsha Kocherla, Milon Mondal, Jens Sobek, Kerstin Moehle, Goran Malojčić, Bernd Wollscheid, John A. Robinson
The outer membrane (OM) in Gram-negative bacteria is an asymmetric bilayer with mostly lipopolysaccharide (LPS) molecules in the outer leaflet. During OM biogenesis, new LPS molecules are transported from their site of assembly on the inner membrane to the OM by seven LPS transport proteins (LptA–G). The complex formed between the integral β-barrel OM protein LptD and the lipoprotein LptE is responsible for transporting LPS from the periplasmic side of the OM to its final location on the cell surface. Because of its essential function in many Gram-negative bacteria, the LPS transport pathway is an interesting target for the development of new antibiotics. A family of macrocyclic peptidomimetics was discovered recently that target LptD and inhibit LPS transport specifically in Pseudomonas spp. The related molecule Murepavadin is in clinical development for the treatment of life-threatening infections caused by P. aeruginosa. To characterize the interaction of these antibiotics with LptD from P. aeruginosa, we characterized the binding site by cross-linking to a photolabeling probe. We used a hypothesis-free mass spectrometry-based proteomic approach to provide evidence that the antibiotic cross-links to the periplasmic segment of LptD, containing a β-jellyroll domain and an N-terminal insert domain characteristic of Pseudomonas spp. Binding of the antibiotic to the periplasmic segment is expected to block LPS transport, consistent with the proposed mode of action and observed specificity of these antibiotics. These insights may prove valuable for the discovery of new antibiotics targeting the LPS transport pathway in other Gram-negative bacteria.