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J Bacteriol. 2000 Mar;182(5):1257-63.

Identification of a chitin-binding protein secreted by Pseudomonas aeruginosa.

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Department of Molecular Microbiology and Institute of Biomembranes, Utrecht University, 3584 CH Utrecht, The Netherlands.


One of the major proteins secreted by Pseudomonas aeruginosa is a 43-kDa protein, which is cleaved by elastase into smaller fragments, including a 30-kDa and a 23-kDa fragment. The N-terminal 23-kDa fragment was previously suggested as corresponding to a staphylolytic protease and was designated LasD (S. Park and D. R. Galloway, Mol. Microbiol. 16:263-270, 1995). However, the sequence of the gene encoding this 43-kDa protein revealed that the N-terminal half of the protein is homologous to the chitin-binding proteins CHB1 of Streptomyces olivaceoviridis and CBP21 of Serratia marcescens and to the cellulose-binding protein p40 of Streptomyces halstedii. Furthermore, a short C-terminal fragment shows homology to a part of chitinase A of Vibrio harveyi. The full-length 43-kDa protein could bind chitin and was thereby protected against the proteolytic activity of elastase, whereas the degradation products did not bind chitin. The purified 43-kDa chitin-binding protein had no staphylolytic activity, and comparison of the enzymatic activities in the extracellular medium of a wild-type strain and a chitin-binding protein-deficient mutant indicated that the 43-kDa protein supports neither chitinolytic nor staphylolytic activity. We conclude that the 43-kDa protein, which was found to be produced by many clinical isolates of P. aeruginosa, is a chitin-binding protein, and we propose to name it CbpD (chitin-binding protein D).

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