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Sci Rep. 2019 Feb 11;9(1):1791. doi: 10.1038/s41598-018-38400-x.

Characterization of highly conserved G-quadruplex motifs as potential drug targets in Streptococcus pneumoniae.

Author information

1
Discipline of Biosciences and Biomedical Engineering, Indian Institute of Technology Indore, Simrol, Indore, 453552, India.
2
Centre for Bio-design and Diagnostics, Translational Health Science and Technology Institute, Faridabad, Haryana, India.
3
Discipline of Biosciences and Biomedical Engineering, Indian Institute of Technology Indore, Simrol, Indore, 453552, India. amitk@iiti.ac.in.

Abstract

Several G-quadruplex forming motifs have been reported to be highly conserved in the regulatory regions of the genome of different organisms and influence various biological processes like DNA replication, recombination and gene expression. Here, we report the highly conserved and three potentially G-quadruplex forming motifs (SP-PGQs) in the essential genes (hsdS, recD, and pmrA) of the Streptococcus pneumoniae genome. These genes were previously observed to play a vital role in providing the virulence to the bacteria, by participating in the host-pathogen interaction, drug-efflux system and recombination- repair system. However, the presence and importance of highly conserved G-quadruplex motifs in these genes have not been previously recognized. We employed the CD spectroscopy, NMR spectroscopy, and electrophoretic mobility shift assay to confirm the adaptation of the G-quadruplex structure by the SP-PGQs. Further, ITC and CD melting analysis revealed the energetically favorable and thermodynamically stable interaction between a candidate G4 binding small molecule TMPyP4 and SP-PGQs. Next, TFP reporter based assay confirmed the regulatory role of SP-PGQs in the expression of PGQ harboring genes. All these experiments together characterized the SP-PGQs as a promising drug target site for combating the Streptococcus pneumoniae infection.

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