Bacterial microcompartment assembly: The key role of encapsulation peptides.
ABSTRACT: Bacterial microcompartments (BMCs) are proteinaceous organelles used by a broad range of bacteria to segregate and optimize metabolic reactions. Their functions are diverse, and can be divided into anabolic (carboxysome) and catabolic (metabolosomes) processes, depending on their cargo enzymes. The assembly pathway for the ?-carboxysome has been characterized, revealing that biogenesis proceeds from the inside out. The enzymes coalesce into a procarboxysome, followed by encapsulation in a protein shell that is recruited to the procarboxysome by a short (?17 amino acids) extension on the C-terminus of one of the encapsulated proteins. A similar extension is also found on the N- or C-termini of a subset of metabolosome core enzymes. These encapsulation peptides (EPs) are characterized by a primary structure predicted to form an amphipathic ?-helix that interacts with shell proteins. Here, we review the features, function and widespread occurrence of EPs among metabolosomes, and propose an expanded role for EPs in the assembly of diverse BMCs.
Project description:Bacterial microcompartments (BMCs) are organelles composed of a selectively permeable protein shell that encapsulates enzymes involved in CO2 fixation (carboxysomes) or carbon catabolism (metabolosomes). Confinement of sequential reactions by the BMC shell presumably increases the efficiency of the pathway by reducing the crosstalk of metabolites, release of toxic intermediates, and accumulation of inhibitory products. Because BMCs are composed entirely of protein and self-assemble, they are an emerging platform for engineering nanoreactors and molecular scaffolds. However, testing designs for assembly and function through in vivo expression is labor-intensive and has limited the potential of BMCs in bioengineering. Here, we developed a new method for in vitro assembly of defined nanoscale BMC architectures: shells and nanotubes. By inserting a "protecting group", a short ubiquitin-like modifier (SUMO) domain, self-assembly of shell proteins in vivo was thwarted, enabling preparation of concentrates of shell building blocks. Addition of the cognate protease removes the SUMO domain and subsequent mixing of the constituent shell proteins in vitro results in the self-assembly of three types of supramolecular architectures: a metabolosome shell, a carboxysome shell, and a BMC protein-based nanotube. We next applied our method to generate a metabolosome shell engineered with a hyper-basic luminal surface, allowing for the encapsulation of biotic or abiotic cargos functionalized with an acidic accessory group. This is the first demonstration of using charge complementarity to encapsulate diverse cargos in BMC shells. Collectively, our work provides a generally applicable method for in vitro assembly of natural and engineered BMC-based architectures.
Project description:Bacterial microcompartments (BMCs) are proteinaceous organelles involved in both autotrophic and heterotrophic metabolism. All BMCs share homologous shell proteins but differ in their complement of enzymes; these are typically encoded adjacent to shell protein genes in genetic loci, or operons. To enable the identification and prediction of functional (sub)types of BMCs, we developed LoClass, an algorithm that finds putative BMC loci and inventories, weights, and compares their constituent pfam domains to construct a locus similarity network and predict locus (sub)types. In addition to using LoClass to analyze sequences in the Non-redundant Protein Database, we compared predicted BMC loci found in seven candidate bacterial phyla (six from single-cell genomic studies) to the LoClass taxonomy. Together, these analyses resulted in the identification of 23 different types of BMCs encoded in 30 distinct locus (sub)types found in 23 bacterial phyla. These include the two carboxysome types and a divergent set of metabolosomes, BMCs that share a common catalytic core and process distinct substrates via specific signature enzymes. Furthermore, many Candidate BMCs were found that lack one or more core metabolosome components, including one that is predicted to represent an entirely new paradigm for BMC-associated metabolism, joining the carboxysome and metabolosome. By placing these results in a phylogenetic context, we provide a framework for understanding the horizontal transfer of these loci, a starting point for studies aimed at understanding the evolution of BMCs. This comprehensive taxonomy of BMC loci, based on their constituent protein domains, foregrounds the functional diversity of BMCs and provides a reference for interpreting the role of BMC gene clusters encoded in isolate, single cell, and metagenomic data. Many loci encode ancillary functions such as transporters or genes for cofactor assembly; this expanded vocabulary of BMC-related functions should be useful for design of genetic modules for introducing BMCs in bioengineering applications.
Project description:Metabolosomes, catabolic bacterial microcompartments (BMCs), are proteinaceous organelles that are associated with the breakdown of metabolites such as propanediol and ethanolamine. They are composed of an outer multicomponent protein shell that encases a specific metabolic pathway. Protein cargo found within BMCs is directed by the presence of an encapsulation peptide that appears to trigger aggregation before the formation of the outer shell. We investigated the effect of three distinct encapsulation peptides on foreign cargo in a recombinant BMC system. Our data demonstrate that these peptides cause variations in enzyme activity and protein aggregation. We observed that the level of protein aggregation generally correlates with the size of metabolosomes, while in the absence of cargo BMCs self-assemble into smaller compartments. The results agree with a flexible model for BMC formation based around the ability of the BMC shell to associate with an aggregate formed due to the interaction of encapsulation peptides.
Project description:Bacterial microcompartments (BMCs) are prokaryotic organelles consisting of a protein shell and an encapsulated enzymatic core. BMCs are involved in several biochemical processes, such as choline, glycerol and ethanolamine degradation and carbon fixation. Since non-native enzymes can also be encapsulated in BMCs, an improved understanding of BMC shell assembly and encapsulation processes could be useful for synthetic biology applications. Here we report the isolation and recombinant expression of BMC structural genes from the Klebsiella pneumoniae GRM2 locus, the investigation of mechanisms behind encapsulation of the core enzymes, and the characterization of shell particles by cryo-EM. We conclude that the enzymatic core is encapsulated in a hierarchical manner and that the CutC choline lyase may play a secondary role as an adaptor protein. We also present a cryo-EM structure of a pT?=?4 quasi-symmetric icosahedral shell particle at 3.3?Å resolution, and demonstrate variability among the minor shell forms.
Project description:Targeting of proteins to bacterial microcompartments (BMCs) is mediated by an 18-amino-acid peptide sequence. Herein, we report the solution structure of the N-terminal targeting peptide (P18) of PduP, the aldehyde dehydrogenase associated with the 1,2-propanediol utilization metabolosome from Citrobacter freundii. The solution structure reveals the peptide to have a well-defined helical conformation along its whole length. Saturation transfer difference and transferred NOE NMR has highlighted the observed interaction surface on the peptide with its main interacting shell protein, PduK. By tagging both a pyruvate decarboxylase and an alcohol dehydrogenase with targeting peptides, it has been possible to direct these enzymes to empty BMCs in vivo and to generate an ethanol bioreactor. Not only are the purified, redesigned BMCs able to transform pyruvate into ethanol efficiently, but the strains containing the modified BMCs produce elevated levels of alcohol.
Project description:Bacterial microcompartments (BMCs) are organelles that encapsulate enzymes involved in CO2 fixation or carbon catabolism in a selectively permeable protein shell. Here, we highlight recent advances in the bioengineering of these protein-based nanoreactors in heterologous systems, including transfer and expression of BMC gene clusters, the production of template empty shells, and the encapsulation of non-native enzymes.
Project description:Bacterial Microcompartments (BMCs) are proteinaceous organelles that encapsulate critical segments of autotrophic and heterotrophic metabolic pathways; they are functionally diverse and are found across 23 different phyla. The majority of catabolic BMCs (metabolosomes) compartmentalize a common core of enzymes to metabolize compounds via a toxic and/or volatile aldehyde intermediate. The core enzyme phosphotransacylase (PTAC) recycles Coenzyme A and generates an acyl phosphate that can serve as an energy source. The PTAC predominantly associated with metabolosomes (PduL) has no sequence homology to the PTAC ubiquitous among fermentative bacteria (Pta). Here, we report two high-resolution PduL crystal structures with bound substrates. The PduL fold is unrelated to that of Pta; it contains a dimetal active site involved in a catalytic mechanism distinct from that of the housekeeping PTAC. Accordingly, PduL and Pta exemplify functional, but not structural, convergent evolution. The PduL structure, in the context of the catalytic core, completes our understanding of the structural basis of cofactor recycling in the metabolosome lumen.
Project description:Bacterial microcompartments (BMCs) are promising natural protein structures for applications that require the segregation of certain metabolic functions or molecular species in a defined microenvironment. To understand how endogenous cargos are packaged inside the protein shell is key for using BMCs as nano-scale reactors or delivery vesicles. In this report, we studied the encapsulation of RuBisCO into the ?-type carboxysome from Halothiobacillus neapolitan. Our experimental data revealed that the CsoS2 scaffold proteins engage RuBisCO enzyme through an interaction with the small subunit (CbbS). In addition, the N domain of the large subunit (CbbL) of RuBisCO interacts with all shell proteins that can form the hexamers. The binding affinity between the N domain of CbbL and one of the major shell proteins, CsoS1C, is within the submicromolar range. The absence of the N domain also prevented the encapsulation of the rest of the RuBisCO subunits. Our findings complete the picture of how RuBisCOs are encapsulated into the ?-type carboxysome and provide insights for future studies and engineering of carboxysome as a protein shell.
Project description:Bacterial microcompartments (BMCs) are proteinaceous organelles that optimize specific metabolic pathways referred to as metabolosomes involving transient production of toxic volatile metabolites such as aldehydes. Previous bioinformatics analysis predicted the presence of BMCs in 23 bacterial phyla including foodborne pathogens and a link with gene clusters for the utilization of host-derived substrates such as 1,2-propanediol utilization, i.e., the Pdu cluster. Although, transcriptional regulation of the Pdu cluster and its role in Listeria monocytogenes virulence in animal models have recently been reported, the experimental identification and the physiological role of BMCs in L. monocytogenes is still unexplored. Here, we ask whether BMCs could enable utilization of 1,2-propanediol (Pd) in L. monocytogenes under anaerobic conditions. Using L. monocytogenes EGDe as a model strain, we could demonstrate efficient utilization of Pd with concomitant production of 1-propanol and propionate after 24 h of anaerobic growth, while the utilization was significantly reduced in aerobic conditions. In line with this, expression of genes encoding predicted shell proteins and the signature enzyme propanediol dehydratase is upregulated more than 20-fold in cells anaerobically grown in Pdu-induced versus non-induced control conditions. Additional proteomics analysis confirmed the presence of BMC shell proteins and Pdu enzymes in cells that show active degradation of Pd. Furthermore, using transmission electron microscopy, BMC structures have been detected in these cells linking gene expression, protein composition, and BMCs to activation of the Pdu cluster in anaerobic growth of L. monocytogenes. Studies in defined minimal medium with Pd as an energy source showed a significant increase in cell numbers, indicating that Pdu and the predicted generation of ATP in the conversion of propionyl-phosphate to the end product propionate can support anaerobic growth of L. monocytogenes. Our findings may suggest a role for BMC-dependent utilization of Pd in L. monocytogenes growth, transmission, and interaction with the human host.
Project description:Microbes often augment their metabolism by conditionally constructing proteinaceous organelles, known as bacterial microcompartments (BMCs), that encapsulate enzymes to degrade organic compounds or assimilate CO2. BMCs self-assemble and are spatially delimited by a semi-permeable shell made up of hexameric, trimeric, and pentameric shell proteins. Bioengineers aim to recapitulate the organization and efficiency of these complex biological architectures by redesigning the shell to incorporate non-native enzymes from biotechnologically relevant pathways. To meet this challenge, a diverse set of synthetic biology tools are required, including methods to manipulate the properties of the shell as well as target and organize cargo encapsulation. We designed and determined the crystal structure of a synthetic shell protein building block with an inverted sidedness of its N- and C-terminal residues relative to its natural counterpart; the inversion targets genetically fused protein cargo to the lumen of the shell. Moreover, the titer of fluorescent protein cargo encapsulated using this strategy is controllable using an inducible tetracycline promoter. These results expand the available set of building blocks for precision engineering of BMC-based nanoreactors and are compatible with orthogonal methods which will facilitate the installation and organization of multi-enzyme pathways.