Localization of Aggregatibacter actinomycetemcomitans cytolethal distending toxin subunits during intoxication of live cells.
ABSTRACT: The cytolethal distending toxin (Cdt), produced by some clinically important Gram-negative bacterial species, is related to the family of AB-type toxins. Three heterologous proteins (CdtA, CdtB, and CdtC) and a genotoxin mode of action distinguish the Cdt from others in this toxin class. Crystal structures of several species-specific Cdts have provided a basis for predicting subunit interactions and functions. In addition, empirical studies have yielded significant insights into the in vivo interactions of the Cdt subunits. However, there are still critical gaps in information about the intoxication process. In this study, a novel protein tagging technology was used to localize the subunits in Chinese hamster ovary cells (CHO-K1). A tetracysteine motif was engineered in each subunit, and in subunits with mutations in predicted functional domains, to permit detection with the fluorescein arsenical hairpin binding (FlAsH) dye Lumio green. Live-cell imaging, in conjunction with confocal microscopy, was used to capture the locations of the individual subunits in cells intoxicated, under various conditions, with hybrid heterotrimers. Using this approach, we observed the following. (i) The CdtA subunit remains on the cell surface of CHO cells in association with cholesterol-containing and cholesterol-depleted membrane. (ii) The CdtB subunit is exclusively in the cytosol and, after longer exposure times, localizes to the nucleus. (iii) The CdtC subunit is present on the cell surface and, to a greater extent, in the cytosol. These observations suggest that CdtC, but not CdtA, functions as a chaperone for CdtB entry into cells.
Project description:Haemophilus parasuis is the causative agent of Glässer's disease of pigs, a disease associated with fibrinous polyserositis, polyarthritis and meningitis. We report here H. parasuis encodes two copies of cytolethal distending toxins (Cdts), which these two Cdts showed the uniform toxin activity in vitro. We demonstrate that three Cdt peptides can form an active tripartite holotoxin that exhibits maximum cellular toxicity, and CdtA and CdtB form a more active toxin than CdtB and CdtC. Moreover, the cellular toxicity is associated with the binding of Cdt subunits to cells. Further analysis indicates that CdtC subunit contains an atypical cholesterol recognition/interaction amino acid consensus (CRAC) region. The mutation of CRAC site resulted in decreased cell toxicity. Finally, western blot analysis show all the 15 H. parasuis reference strains and 109 clinical isolates expressed CdtB subunit, indicating that Cdt is a conservative putative virulence factor for H. parasuis. This is the first report of the molecular and cellular basis of Cdt host interactions in H. parasuis.
Project description:Cytolethal distending toxin (CDT) is a multicomponent bacterial holotoxin that targets most eukarytotic cells causing distension and cell cycle arrest. A number of diverse pathogenic bacterial species associated with diarrhoea, chancroid, chronic hepatitis and periodontal disease produce a CDT. Synthesis of the holotoxin is directed by the expression of three genes, cdtA, cdtB and cdtC. Although the product of the CdtB gene was previously identified as a type I deoxyribonuclease, the functions of the cdtA and cdtC products have not been characterized. Using the periodontal pathogen, Actinobacillus actinomycetemcomitans, we demonstrate that the recombinant product of the CdtA gene binds to the surface of Chinese hamster ovary (CHO) cells. This protein did not induce distension or cytotoxicity when introduced into the cytosol using a lipid-based protein delivery system. Recombinant CdtB and CdtC proteins failed to bind to CHO cells. However, the delivery of either CdtB or CdtC into the cytosol resulted in the characteristic pattern of distension followed by cell death. Based on these results, it appears that the CdtA protein subunit alone is responsible for anchoring the holotoxin to the cell surface. The CdtC subunit, in concert with CdtB, contributes to the cytotoxic activities of the holotoxin. The specific mechanism of CdtC cytotoxicity is currently unknown.
Project description:Many bacterial pathogens encode the cytolethal distending toxin (CDT), which causes host cells to arrest during their cell cycle by inflicting DNA damage. CDT is composed of three proteins, CdtA, CdtB, and CdtC. CdtB is the enzymatically active or A subunit, which possesses DNase I-like activity, whereas CdtA and CdtC function as heteromeric B subunits that mediate the delivery of CdtB into host cells. We show here that Salmonella enterica serovar Typhi encodes CDT activity, which depends on the function of a CdtB homologous protein. Remarkably, S. enterica serovar Typhi does not encode apparent homologs of CdtA or CdtC. Instead, we found that toxicity, as well as cdtB expression, requires bacterial internalization into host cells. We propose a pathway of toxin delivery in which bacterial internalization relieves the requirement for the functional equivalent of the B subunit of the CDT toxin.
Project description:Cytolethal distending toxins (CDTs), which block eukaryotic cell proliferation by acting as inhibitory cyclomodulins, are produced by diverse groups of Gram-negative bacteria. Active CDT is composed of three polypeptides--CdtA, CdtB, and CdtC--encoded by the genes cdtA, cdtB, and cdtC, respectively. We developed a PCR-restriction fragment length polymorphism assay for the detection and differentiation of five alleles of cdtB (Cdt-I through Cdt-V) in Escherichia coli and used the assay to investigate the prevalence and characteristic of CDT-producing E. coli in children with diarrhea (A. Hinenoya et al., Microbiol. Immunol. 53:206-215, 2009). In these assays, two untypable cdtB genes were detected and the organisms harboring the cdtB gene were identified as Providencia alcalifaciens (strains AH-31 and AS-1). Nucleotide sequence analysis of the cdt gene cluster revealed that the cdtA, cdtB, and cdtC genes of P. alcalifaciens are of 750, 810, and 549 bp, respectively. To understand the possible horizontal transfer of the cdt genes among closely related species, the presence of cdt genes was screened in various Providencia spp. by colony hybridization assay, and the cdt gene cluster was found in only limited strains of P. alcalifaciens. Genome walking revealed that the cdt gene cluster of P. alcalifaciens is located adjacent to a putative transposase gene, suggesting the locus might be horizontally transferable. Interestingly, the CDT of P. alcalifaciens (PaCDT) showed some homology with the CDT of Shigella boydii. Whereas filter-sterilized lysates of strains AH-31 and AS-1 showed distention of CHO but not of HeLa cells, E. coli CDT-I exhibited distention of both cells. This activity of PaCDT was confirmed by generating recombinant PaCDT protein, which could also be neutralized by rabbit anti-PaCdtB antibody. Furthermore, recombinant PaCDT was found to induce G(2)/M cell cycle arrest and phosphorylation of host histone H2AX, a sensitive marker of DNA double-strand breaks. To our knowledge, this is the first report showing that certain clinical P. alcalifaciens strains could produce variants of the CDTs compared.
Project description:Cytolethal distending toxin (CDT) consisting of CdtA, CdtB and CdtC has been reported to be a possible virulence factor of campylobacters including Campylobacter upsaliensis. In our previous study, the cdtB gene-based PCR-restriction fragment length polymorphism (RFLP) assay for detection and differentiation of 7 Campylobacter species yielded 3 different RFLP patterns (Cu-I to Cu-III). In this study, entire cdt (Cucdt) genes of each pattern were sequenced to see whether there are any differences in cdt genes, its amino acid sequences and biological activity of CuCDT. We found that all 3 representative strains harbor the entire Cucdt genes and homology between prototype and newly determined Cucdt genes was 94 to 98% with cdtA, 93 to 94% with cdtB and 92 to 93% with cdtC, while that between amino acids of CuCDT was 95 to 99% with CdtA, 97 to 98% with CdtB and 92 to 93% with CdtC. Furthermore, CDT activity produced by C. upsaliensis strains was examined by cytotoxicity assay with HeLa cells. Interestingly, C. upsaliensis produced 64 to 2,340 times higher CDT titer in comparison to other campylobacters did. In addition, Cu-III showed 64 times higher CDT titer than Cu-II, although CDT production level was almost the same by western blotting. These data suggest that CDT produced by C. upsaliensis might contribute more to human diseases in comparison to that produced by other campylobacters and Cu-III CDT seems to be more toxic to HeLa cells in comparison to Cu-I and Cu-II CDTs.
Project description:Cytolethal distending toxin (CDT) produced by Campylobacter jejuni comprises a heterotrimeric complex formed by CdtA, CdtB, and CdtC. Among these toxin subunits, CdtA and CdtC function as essential proteins that mediate toxin binding to cytoplasmic membranes followed by delivery of CdtB into the nucleus. The binding of CdtA/CdtC to the cell surface is mediated by cholesterol, a major component in lipid rafts. Although the putative cholesterol recognition/interaction amino acid consensus (CRAC) domain of CDT has been reported from several bacterial pathogens, the protein regions contributing to CDT binding to cholesterol in C. jejuni remain unclear. Here, we selected a potential CRAC-like region present in the CdtC from C. jejuni for analysis. Molecular modeling showed that the predicted functional domain had the shape of a hydrophobic groove, facilitating cholesterol localization to this domain. Mutation of a tyrosine residue in the CRAC-like region decreased direct binding of CdtC to cholesterol rather than toxin intermolecular interactions and led to impaired CDT intoxication. These results provide a molecular link between C. jejuni CdtC and membrane-lipid rafts through the CRAC-like region, which contributes to toxin recognition and interaction with cholesterol.
Project description:The cytolethal distending toxin (Cdt) of Actinobacillus actinomycetemcomitans is an atypical A-B-type toxin consisting of a heterotrimer composed of the cdtA, cdtB, and cdtC gene products. The CdtA and CdtC subunits form two heterogeneous ricin-like lectin domains which bind the holotoxin to the target cell. Point mutations were used to study CdtC structure and function. One (mutC216(F97C)) of eight single-amino-acid replacement mutants identified yielded a gene product that failed to form biologically active holotoxin. Based on the possibility that the F97C mutation destabilized a predicted disulfide, targeted mutagenesis was used to examine the contribution of each of four cysteine residues, in two predicted disulfides (C96/C107 and C135/C149), to CdtC activities. Cysteine replacement mutations in two predicted disulfides (C136/C149 and C178/C197) in CdtA were also characterized. Flow cytometry and CHO cell proliferation assays showed that changing either C96 or C149 in CdtC to alanine abolished the biological activity of holotoxin complexes. However, replacing C107 or C135 in CdtC and any of the four cysteines in CdtA with alanine or serine resulted in only partial or no loss of holotoxin activity. Changes in the biological activities of the mutant holotoxins correlated with altered subunit binding. In contrast to elimination of the B chain of ricin, the elimination of intrachain disulfides in CdtC and CdtA by genetic replacement of cysteines destabilizes these subunit proteins but not to the extent that cytotoxicity is lost. Reduction of the wild-type holotoxin did not affect cytotoxicity, and the reduced form of wild-type CdtA exhibited a statistically significant increase in binding to ligand. A diminished role for intrachain disulfides in stabilizing CdtA and CdtC may have clinical relevance for the A. actinomycetemcomitans Cdt. The cdt gene products secreted by this pathogen assemble and bind to target cells in periodontally involved sites, which are decidedly reduced environments in the human oral cavity.
Project description:Many bacterial pathogens that cause different illnesses employ the cytolethal distending toxin (CDT) to induce host cell DNA damage, leading to cell cycle arrest or apoptosis. CDT is a tripartite holotoxin that consists of a DNase I family nuclease (CdtB) bound to two ricin-like lectin domains (CdtA and CdtC). Through the use of structure-based mutagenesis, biochemical and cellular toxicity assays, we have examined several key structural elements of the CdtA and CdtC subunits for their importance to toxin assembly, cell surface binding, and activity. CdtA and CdtC possess N- and C-terminal nonglobular polypeptides that extensively interact with each other and CdtB, and we have determined the contribution of each to toxin stability and activity. We have also functionally characterized two key binding elements of the holotoxin revealed from its crystal structure. One is an aromatic cluster in CdtA, and the other is a long and deep groove that is formed at the interface of CdtA and CdtC. We demonstrate that mutations of the aromatic patch or groove residues impair toxin binding to HeLa cells and that cell surface binding is tightly correlated with intoxication of cultured cells. These results establish several structure-based hypotheses for the assembly and function of this toxin family.
Project description:The periodontal pathogen Aggregatibacter actinomycetemcomitans produces a cytolethal distending toxin (Cdt) that inhibits the proliferation of oral epithelial cells. Structural models suggest that the CdtA and CdtC subunits of the Cdt heterotrimer form two putative lectin domains with a central groove. A region of CdtA rich in heterocyclic amino acids (aromatic patch) appears to play an important role in receptor recognition. In this study site-specific mutagenesis was used to assess the contributions of aromatic amino acids (tyrosine and phenylalanine) to receptor binding and CdtA-CdtC assembly. Predominant surface-exposed aromatic residues that are adjacent to the aromatic patch region in CdtA or are near the groove located at the junction of CdtA and CdtC were studied. Separately replacing residues Y105, Y140, Y188, and Y189 with alanine in CdtA resulted in differential effects on binding related to residue position within the aromatic region. The data indicate that an extensive receptor binding domain extends from the groove across the entire face of CdtA that is oriented 180 degrees from the CdtB subunit. Replacement of residue Y105 in CdtA and residues Y61 and F141 in CdtC, which are located in or at the periphery of the groove, inhibited toxin assembly. Taken together, these results, along with the lack of an aromatic amino acid-rich region in CdtC similar to that in CdtA, suggest that binding of the heterotoxin to its cell surface receptor is mediated predominantly by the CdtA subunit. These findings are important for developing strategies designed to block the activity of this prominent virulence factor.
Project description:Cytolethal distending toxin (Cdt) is produced by Gram-negative bacteria of several species. It is composed of three subunits, CdtA, CdtB, and CdtC, with CdtB being the catalytic subunit. We fused CdtB from Haemophilus ducreyi to the N-terminal 255 amino acids of Bacillus anthracis toxin lethal factor (LFn) to design a novel, potentially potent antitumor drug. As a result of this fusion, CdtB was transported into the cytosol of targeted cells via the efficient delivery mechanism of anthrax toxin. The fusion protein efficiently killed various human tumor cell lines by first inducing a complete cell cycle arrest in the G2/M phase, followed by induction of apoptosis. The fusion protein showed very low toxicity in mouse experiments and impressive antitumor effects in a Lewis Lung carcinoma model, with a 90% cure rate. This study demonstrates that efficient drug delivery by a modified anthrax toxin system combined with the enzymatic activity of CdtB has great potential as anticancer treatment and should be considered for the development of novel anticancer drugs.