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Int J Med Microbiol. 2004 Oct;294(4):217-23.

Structural biology and structure-based inhibitor design of cholera toxin and heat-labile enterotoxin.

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  • 1Department of Biochemistry, Biomolecular Structure Center, University of Washington, Box 357742, Seattle WA 98195, USA.


Structural biology studies on cholera toxin and the closely related heat-labile enterotoxin from enterotoxigenic Escherichia coli over the past decade have shed light on the mechanism of toxin action at molecular and atomic levels. Also, components of the extracellular protein secretion apparatus that translocate the toxins across the outer membrane are being investigated. At the same time, structure-based design has led to various classes of compounds targeting different toxin sites, including highly potent multivalent inhibitors that block the toxin receptor-binding process.

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