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Curr Opin Struct Biol. 2004 Apr;14(2):161-70.

Structural biology of bacterial pathogenesis.

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Institute of Structural Molecular Biology, School of Crystallography, Birkbeck College, London, UK.


Recent years have seen a rapid increase in structural information on proteins implicated in bacterial pathogenesis. The different modes by which bacteria establish contact with their host tissues are exemplified by the structures of bacterial adhesins in complex with their cognate host receptor. A more detailed structural understanding of the various Gram-negative secretion systems has emerged with the determination of the structures of type I and type IV secretion system components, and with the elucidation of the mechanism of fibre formation in the chaperone-usher pathway of pilus biogenesis. Finally, the structures of complexes of secreted virulence factors bound to their host targets have unravelled the mechanisms by which bacterial pathogens exploit cellular processes to their advantage.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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