Summary: The outer membrane of strain 3283-61 (serotype O2:K3) was isolated from blebs released upon spheroplast formation, in the presence of lysozyme and EDTA, by isopycnic sucrose density gradient centrifugation. SDS-PAGE of the outer membrane fraction prepared from cells grown in nutrient broth containing 3% (w/v) NaCl revealed five major proteins, designated a to e, with apparent approximate molecular weights: a, 44000; b, 36 000; c, 33500; d, 26500; e, 22000. An increase in NaCl concentration in the growth medium resulted in an increase of proteins b and c, whereas a decrease to 0.5% (w/v) induced two additional major proteins with respective molecular weights of about 35000 and 32000. Proteins a and b appeared to be loosely associated with the peptidoglycan layer since they were largely retained after extraction with 2% (w/v) SDS at 50 °C for 30 min. Proteins c and/or e may play a role in phage VP1-receptors since phage-resistant mutants derived from strain 3283-61 had significantly diminished amounts of both proteins. The major outer membrane proteins varied in number and molecular weight in strains of belonging to different K-serotypes.


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