Purification and characterisation of recombinant His-tagged RgpB gingipain from Porphymonas gingivalis.
ABSTRACT: Gingipain proteases are important virulence factors from the periodontal pathogen Porphyromonas gingivalis and are the target of many in vitro studies. Due to their close biochemical properties, purification of individual gingipains is difficult and requires multiple chromatographic steps. In this study, we demonstrate that insertion of a hexahistidine affinity tag upstream of a C-terminal outer membrane translocation signal in RgpB gingipain leads to the secretion of a soluble, mature form of RgpB bearing the affinity tag that can easily be purified by nickel-chelating affinity chromatography. The final product obtained high yielding high purity is biochemically indistinguishable from the native RgpB enzyme.
Project description:Porphyromonas gingivalis, the major etiologic agent in adult periodontitis, produces large amounts of proteases that are important for its survival and pathogenesis. The activation/maturation of gingipains, the major proteases, in P. gingivalis involves a complex network of processes which are not yet fully understood. VimA, a putative acetyltransferase and virulence-modulating protein in P. gingivalis, is known to be involved in gingipain biogenesis. P. gingivalis FLL92, a vimA-defective isogenic mutant (vimA::ermF-ermAM) showed late-onset gingipain activity at stationary phase, indicating the likelihood of a complementary functional VimA homolog in that growth phase. This study aimed to identify a functional homolog(s) that may activate the gingipains in the absence of VimA at stationary phase. A bioinformatics analysis showed five putative GCN5-related N-acetyltransferases (GNAT) encoded in the P. gingivalis genome that are structurally related to VimA. Allelic exchange mutagenesis was used to make deletion mutants for these acetyltransferases in the P. gingivalis vimA-defective mutant FLL102 (ΔvimA::ermF) genetic background. One of the mutants, designated P. gingivalis FLL126 (ΔvimA-ΔPG1842), did not show any late-onset gingipain activity at stationary phase compared to that of the parent strain P. gingivalis FLL102. A Western blot analysis of stationary-phase extracellular fractions with antigingipain antibodies showed immunoreactive bands that were similar in size to those for the progingipain species present only in the ΔvimA-ΔPG1842 isogenic mutant. Both recombinant VimA and PG1842 proteins acetylated Y230, K247, and K248 residues in the pro-RgpB substrate. Collectively, these findings indicate that PG1842 may play a significant role in the activation/maturation of gingipains in P. gingivalis IMPORTANCE Gingipain proteases are key virulence factors secreted by Porphyromonas gingivalis that cause periodontal tissue damage and the degradation of the host immune system proteins. Gingipains are translated as an inactive zymogen to restrict intracellular proteolytic activity before secretion. Posttranslational processing converts the inactive proenzyme to a catalytically active protease. Gingipain biogenesis, including its secretion and activation, is a complex process which is still not fully understood. One recent study identified acetylated lysine residues in the three gingipains RgpA, RgpB, and Kgp, thus indicating a role for acetylation in gingipain biogenesis. Here, we show that the acetyltransferases VimA and PG1842 can acetylate the pro-RgpB gingipain species. These findings further indicate that acetylation is a potential mechanism in the gingipain activation/maturation pathway in P. gingivalis.
Project description:Porphyromonas gingivalis is a major pathogen associated with chronic periodontitis. The organism's cell-surface cysteine proteinases, the Arg-specific proteinases (RgpA, RgpB) and the Lys-specific proteinase (Kgp), which are known as gingipains have been implicated as major virulence factors. All three gingipain precursors contain a propeptide of around 200 amino acids in length that is removed during maturation. The aim of this study was to characterize the inhibitory potential of the Kgp and RgpB propeptides against the mature cognate enzymes. Mature Kgp was obtained from P. gingivalis mutant ECR368, which produces a recombinant Kgp with an ABM1 motif deleted from the catalytic domain (rKgp) that enables the otherwise membrane bound enzyme to dissociate from adhesins and be released. Mature RgpB was obtained from P. gingivalis HG66. Recombinant propeptides of Kgp and RgpB were produced in Escherichia coli and purified using nickel-affinity chromatography. The Kgp and RgpB propeptides displayed non-competitive inhibition kinetics with K(i) values of 2.04 µM and 12 nM, respectively. Both propeptides exhibited selectivity towards their cognate proteinase. The specificity of both propeptides was demonstrated by their inability to inhibit caspase-3, a closely related cysteine protease, and papain that also has a relatively long propeptide. Both propeptides at 100 mg/L caused a 50% reduction of P. gingivalis growth in a protein-based medium. In summary, this study demonstrates that gingipain propeptides are capable of inhibiting their mature cognate proteinases.
Project description:We have previously shown that the unique vimA (virulence-modulating) gene could modulate proteolytic activity in Porphyromomas gingivalis. Although a reduction in cysteine protease activity was observed in the vimA-defective mutant, P. gingivalis FLL92, compared to that of the wild-type strain, no changes were seen in the expression of the gingipain genes. This result might suggest posttranscriptional regulation of protease expression. To determine whether there was a defect in the translation, transport, or maturation of the gingipains, P. gingivalis FLL92 was further characterized. In contrast to the wild-type strain, a 90% reduction was seen in both Rgp and Kgp protease activities in strain FLL92 during the exponential growth phase. These activities, however, increased to approximately 60% of that of the wild-type strain during stationary phase. Throughout all the growth phases, Rgp and Kgp activities were mostly soluble, in contrast to those of the wild-type strain. Western blot analyses identified unique Rgp- and Kgp-immunoreactive bands in extracellular protein fractions from FLL92 grown to late exponential phase. Also, the RgpB proenzyme was identified in this fraction by mass spectrometry. In addition, in vitro protease activity could be induced by a urea denaturation-renaturation cycle in this fraction. These results indicate that protease activity in P. gingivalis may be growth phase regulated, possibly by multiple mechanisms. Furthermore, the gingipain RgpB is excreted in an inactive form in the vimA mutant. In addition, these results provide the first evidence of posttranslational regulation of protease activity in P. gingivalis and may suggest an important role for the vimA gene in protease activation in this organism.
Project description:Porphyromonas gingivalis produces outer membrane-attached proteins that include the virulence-associated proteinases RgpA and RgpB (Arg-gingipains) and Kgp (Lys-gingipain). We analyzed the P. gingivalis outer membrane proteome and identified numerous proteins with C-terminal domains similar in sequence to those of RgpB, RgpA, and Kgp, indicating that these domains may have a common function. Using RgpB as a model to investigate the role of the C-terminal domain, we expressed RgpB as a full-length zymogen (recombinant RgpB [rRgpB]), with a catalytic Cys244Ala mutation [rRgpB(C244A)], or with the C-terminal 72 amino acids deleted (rRgpB435) in an Arg-gingipain P. gingivalis mutant (YH522AB) and an Arg- and Lys-gingipain mutant (YH522KAB). rRgpB was catalytically active and located predominantly attached to the outer membrane of both background strains. rRgpB(C244A) was inactive and outer membrane attached, with a typical attachment profile for both background strains according to sodium dodecyl sulfate-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis, but in YH522KAB, the prodomain was not removed. Thus, in vivo, RgpB export and membrane attachment are independent of the proteolytic activity of RgpA, RgpB, or Kgp. However, for maturation involving proteolytic processing of RgpB, the proteolytic activity of RgpB, RgpA, or Kgp is required. The C-terminally-truncated rRgpB435 was not attached to the outer membrane and was located as largely inactive, discrete 71-kDa and 48-kDa isoforms in the culture supernatant and the periplasm. These results suggest that the C-terminal domain is essential for outer membrane attachment and may be involved in a coordinated process of export and attachment to the cell surface.
Project description:PorT is a membrane-associated protein shown to be essential for the maturation and secretion of a class of cysteine proteinases, the gingipains, from the periodontal pathogen Porphyromonas gingivalis. It was previously reported that PorT is located on the periplasmic surface of the inner membrane to function as a chaperone for the maturing proteinases. Our modelling suggested it to be an integral outer-membrane protein with eight anti-parallel, membrane-traversing beta-strands. In this report, the outer-membrane localization model was confirmed by the structural and functional tolerance of PorT to hexahistidine (6xHis) tag insertions at selected locations within the protein using site-directed mutagenesis. Interestingly, those PorT mutations adversely affecting gingipain secretion enhanced expression of the porT gene but at the same time suppressed the transcription of the gingipain rgpB gene. Further, PorT mutants deficient in gingipain activities produced significantly more di- and triaminopeptidase activities. PorT homologues have been found in restricted members of the Bacteroidetes phylum where there is potential for PorT to participate in the maturation and secretion of proteins with characteristic C-terminal domains (CTDs). Knowledge of the cellular localization of PorT will enable analysis of the role of this protein in a new secretory pathway for the export of gingipains and other CTD-class proteins.
Project description:Previous genetic and biochemical studies have confirmed that hemoglobin and hemin utilization in Porphyromonas gingivalis is mediated by the outer membrane hemoglobin and heme receptor HmuR, as well as gingipain K (Kgp), a lysine-specific cysteine protease, and gingipain R1 (HRgpA), one of two arginine-specific cysteine proteases. In this study we report on the binding specificity of the recombinant P. gingivalis HmuR protein and native gingipains for hemoglobin, hemin, various porphyrins, and metalloporphyrins as assessed by spectrophotometric assays, by affinity chromatography, and by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. Protoporphyrin, mesoporphyrin, deuteroporphyrin, hematoporphyrin, and some of their iron, copper, and zinc derivatives were examined to evaluate the role of both the central metal ion and the peripheral substituents on binding to recombinant HmuR and soluble gingipains. Scatchard analysis of hemin binding to Escherichia coli cells expressing recombinant membrane-associated six-His-tagged HmuR yielded a linear plot with a binding affinity of 2.4 x 10(-5) M. Recombinant E. coli cells bound the iron, copper, and zinc derivatives of protoporphyrin IX (PPIX) with similar affinities, and approximately four times more tightly than PPIX itself, which suggests that the active site of HmuR contains a histidine that binds the metal ion in the porphyrin ring. Furthermore, we found that recombinant HmuR prefers the ethyl and vinyl side chains of the PPIX molecule to either the larger hydroxyethyl or smaller hydrogen side chains. Kgp and HRgpA were demonstrated to bind various porphyrins and metalloporphyrins with affinities similar to those for hemin, indicating that the binding of Kgp and HRgpA to these porphyrins does not require a metal within the porphyrin ring. We did not detect the binding of RgpB, the arginine-specific cysteine protease that lacks a C-terminal hemagglutinin domain, to hemoglobin, porphyrins, or metalloporphyrins. Kgp and HRgpA, but not RgpB, were demonstrated to bind directly to soluble recombinant six-His-tagged HmuR. Several possible mechanisms for the cooperation between outer membrane receptor HmuR and proteases Kgp and HRgpA in hemin and hemoglobin binding and utilization are discussed.
Project description:Porphyromonas gingivalis, the main etiologic agent of periodontitis, secretes cysteine proteases named gingipains. HRgpA and RgpB gingipains have Arg-specificity, while Kgp gingipain is Lys-specific. Together they can cleave an array of proteins and importantly contribute to the development of periodontitis. In this study we focused on gingipain-exerted proteolysis at the cell surface of human gingival epithelial cells [telomerase immortalized gingival keratinocytes (TIGK)] in order to better understand the molecular mechanisms behind tissue destruction in periodontitis. Using mass spectrometry, we investigated the whole sheddome/degradome of TIGK cell surface proteins by P. gingivalis strains differing in gingipain expression and by purified gingipains, and performed the first global proteomic analysis of gignpain proteolysis at the membrane. Incubation of TIGK cells with P. gingivalis resulted in massive degradation of proteins already at low multiplicity of infection, whereas incubating cells with purified gingipains resulted in more discrete patterns, indicative of a combination of complete degradation and shedding of membrane proteins. Most of the identified gingipain substrates were molecules involved in adhesion, suggesting that gingipains may cause tissue damage through cleavage of cell contacts, resulting in cell detachment and rounding, and consequently leading to anoikis. However, HRgpA and RgpB gingipains differ in their mechanism of action. While RgpB rapidly degraded the proteins, HRgpA exhibited a much slower proteolysis indicative of ectodomain shedding, as demonstrated for the transferrin receptor protein 1 (TFRC). These results reveal a molecular underpinning to P. gingivalis-induced tissue destruction and enhance our knowledge of the role of P. gingivalis proteases in the pathobiology of periodontitis. Proteomics data are available via ProteomeXchange with identifier PXD015679.
Project description:We have previously shown that benzamidine-type compounds can inhibit the activity of arginine-specific cysteine proteinases (gingipains HRgpA and RgpB); well-known virulence factors of Porphyromonas gingivalis. They also hinder in vitro growth of this important periodontopathogenic bacterium. Apparently growth arrest is not associated with their ability to inhibit these proteases, because pentamidine, which is a 20-fold less efficient inhibitor of gingipain than 2,6-bis-(4-amidinobenzyl)-cyclohexanone (ACH), blocked P. gingivalis growth far more effectively. To identify targets for benzamidine-derived compounds other than Arg-gingipains, and to explain their bacteriostatic effects, P. gingivalis ATCC 33277 and P. gingivalis M5-1-2 (clinical isolate) cell extracts were subjected to affinity chromatography using a benzamidine-Sepharose column to identify proteins interacting with benzamidine. In addition to HRgpA and RgpB the analysis revealed heat-shock protein GroEL as another ligand for benzamidine. To better understand the effect of benzamidine-derived compounds on P. gingivalis, bacteria were exposed to benzamidine, pentamidine, ACH and heat, and the expression of gingipains and GroEL was determined. Exposure to heat and benzamidine-derived compounds caused significant increases in GroEL, at both the mRNA and protein levels. Interestingly, despite the fact that gingipains were shown to be the main virulence factors in a fertilized egg model of infection, mortality rates were strongly reduced, not only by ACH, but also by pentamidine, a relatively weak gingipain inhibitor. This effect may depend not only on gingipain inhibition but also on interaction of benzamidine derivatives with GroEL. Therefore these compounds may find use in supportive periodontitis treatment.
Project description:Zymogenicity is a regulatory mechanism that prevents inadequate catalytic activity in the wrong context. It plays a central role in maintaining microbial virulence factors in an inactive form inside the pathogen until secretion. Among these virulence factors is the cysteine peptidase gingipain B (RgpB), which is the major virulence factor secreted by the periodontopathogen Porphyromonas gingivalis that attacks host vasculature and defense proteins. The structure of the complex between soluble mature RgpB, consisting of a catalytic domain and an immunoglobulin superfamily domain, and its 205-residue N-terminal prodomain, the largest structurally characterized to date for a cysteine peptidase, reveals a novel fold for the prodomain that is distantly related to sugar-binding lectins. It attaches laterally to the catalytic domain through a large concave surface. The main determinant for latency is a surface "inhibitory loop," which approaches the active-site cleft of the enzyme on its non-primed side in a substrate-like manner. It inserts an arginine (Arg(126)) into the S1 pocket, thus matching the substrate specificity of the enzyme. Downstream of Arg(126), the polypeptide leaves the cleft, thereby preventing cleavage. Moreover, the carbonyl group of Arg(126) establishes a very strong hydrogen bond with the co-catalytic histidine, His(440), pulling it away from the catalytic cysteine, Cys(473), and toward Glu(381), which probably plays a role in orienting the side chain of His(440) during catalysis. The present results provide the structural determinants of zymogenic inhibition of RgpB by way of a novel inhibitory mechanism for peptidases in general and open the field for the design of novel inhibitory strategies in the treatment of human periodontal disease.
Project description:The black pigment of Porphyromonas gingivalis is composed of the mu-oxo bishaem complex of Fe(III) protoporphyrin IX (mu-oxo oligomer, dimeric haem), namely [Fe(III)PPIX]2O. P. gingivalis W50 and Rgp (Arg-gingipain)- and Kgp (Lys-gingipain)-deficient mutants K1A, D7, E8 and W501 [Aduse-Opoku, Davies, Gallagher, Hashim, Evans, Rangarajan, Slaney and Curtis (2000) Microbiology 146, 1933-1940] were grown on horse blood/agar for 14 days and examined for the production of mu-oxo bishaem. Mu-oxo Bishaem was detected by UV-visible, Mössbauer and Raman spectroscopies in wild-type W50 and in the black-pigmented RgpA- and RgpB-deficient mutants (W501 and D7 respectively), whereas no haem species were detected in the straw-coloured colonies of Kgp-deficient strain K1A. The dark brown pigment of the double RgpA/RgpB knockout mutant (E8) was not composed of mu-oxo bishaem, but of a high-spin monomeric Fe(III) protoporphyrin IX species (possibly a haem-albumin complex). In vitro incubation of oxyhaemoglobin with cells of the W50 strain and the RgpA- and RgpB-deficient mutants (W501 and D7) resulted in the formation of mu-oxo bishaem via methaemoglobin as an intermediate. Although the Kgp-deficient strain K1A converted oxyhaemoglobin into methaemoglobin, this was not further degraded into mu-oxo bishaem. The double RgpA/RgpB knockout was also not capable of producing mu-oxo bishaem from oxyhaemoglobin, but instead generated a haemoglobin haemichrome. Inhibition of Arg-X protease activity of W50, W501, D7 and K1A with leupeptin, under conditions where Lys-X protease activity was unaffected, prevented the production of mu-oxo bishaem from oxyhaemoglobin, but resulted in the formation of a haemoglobin haemichrome. These results show that one or both of RgpA and RgpB gingipains, in addition to the lysine-specific gingipain, is necessary for the production of mu-oxo bishaem from haemoglobin by whole cells of P. gingivalis.