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J Am Chem Soc. 2010 Mar 3;132(8):2518-9. doi: 10.1021/ja910361r.

Development of an activity assay for discovery of inhibitors of lipopolysaccharide transport.

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Department of Chemistry and Chemical Biology, Harvard University, Cambridge, Massachusetts 01238, USA.


The outer membrane of gram-negative bacteria contains an outer leaflet composed of lipopolysaccharide (LPS) that is transported to this location by a pathway that is essential for viability. It has been suggested that inhibitors of this pathway could be useful antibiotics. Herein we reconstitute the activity of the ATPase component (LptB) of the ABC transporter that initiates LPS transport and assembly. We developed a high-throughput assay and screened a library of kinase inhibitors against LptB. We identified two classes of ATP-competitive inhibitors. These are the first inhibitors of the ATPase component of any bacterial ABC transporter. The small-molecule inhibitors will be very useful tools for further biochemical studies of the proteins involved in LPS transport and assembly.

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