Charting and unzipping the surface layer of Corynebacterium glutamicum with the atomic force microscope

Scheuring, Simon and Stahlberg, Henning and Chami, Mohamed and Houssin, Christine and Rigaud, Jean-Louis and Engel, Andreas. (2002) Charting and unzipping the surface layer of Corynebacterium glutamicum with the atomic force microscope. Molecular microbiology, Vol. 44, H. 3. pp. 675-684.

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Official URL: http://edoc.unibas.ch/dok/A5257652

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Bacterial surface layers (S-layers) are extracellular protein networks that act as molecular sieves and protect a large variety of archaea and bacteria from hostile environments. Atomic force microscopy (AFM) was used to asses the S-layer of Coryne-bacterium glutamicum formed of PS2 proteins that assemble into hexameric complexes within a hexagonal lattice. Native and trypsin-treated S-layers were studied. Using the AFM stylus as a nanodissector, native arrays that adsorbed to mica as double layers were separated. All surfaces of native and protease-digested S-layers were imaged at better than 1 nm lateral resolution. Difference maps of the topographies of native and proteolysed samples revealed the location of the cleaved C-terminal fragment and the sidedness of the S-layer. Because the corrugation depths determined from images of both sides span the total thickness of the S-layer, a three-dimensional reconstruction of the S-layer could be calculated. Lattice defects visualized at 1 nm resolution revealed the molecular boundaries of PS2 proteins. The combination of AFM imaging and single molecule force spectroscopy allowed the mechanical properties of the Corynebacterium glutamicum S-layer to be examined. The results provide a basis for understanding the amazing stability of this protective bacterial surface coat.
Faculties and Departments:05 Faculty of Science > Departement Biozentrum > Former Organization Units Biozentrum > Structural Biology (Engel)
05 Faculty of Science > Departement Biozentrum > Structural Biology & Biophysics > Structural Biology (Stahlberg)
UniBasel Contributors:Engel, Andreas H and Stahlberg, Henning
Item Type:Article, refereed
Article Subtype:Research Article
Note:Publication type according to Uni Basel Research Database: Journal article
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Last Modified:08 Jun 2012 06:45
Deposited On:22 Mar 2012 13:18

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