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Curr Opin Chem Biol. 2019 Aug 26;53:44-50. doi: 10.1016/j.cbpa.2019.07.009. [Epub ahead of print]

Chemical tools to characterize peptidoglycan synthases.

Author information

1
Department of Microbiology, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA 02115, USA.
2
Department of Chemistry and Chemical Biology, Harvard University, Cambridge, MA 02138, USA.
3
Department of Microbiology, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA 02115, USA; Department of Chemistry and Chemical Biology, Harvard University, Cambridge, MA 02138, USA. Electronic address: suzanne_walker@hms.harvard.edu.

Abstract

The peptidoglycan cell wall is a unique macromolecular structure in bacteria that defines their shape and confers protection from the surrounding environment. Decades of research has focused on understanding the peptidoglycan synthesis pathway and exploiting its essentiality for antibiotic development. Recently, a new class of peptidoglycan polymerases known as the SEDS (shape, elongation, division and sporulation) proteins were identified; these polytopic membrane proteins function together with the better-known penicillin-binding proteins (PBPs) to build the cell wall. In this review, we will highlight recent developments in chemical tools and methods to label the bacterial cell wall and discuss how these developments are leading to a better understanding of peptidoglycan synthases and their cellular roles.

PMID:
31466035
DOI:
10.1016/j.cbpa.2019.07.009

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