1887

Abstract

The phage-display cloning technique was used to find rhizobial proteins that bind to receptors located on the bacterial cell surface. The aim was to clone the gene(s) encoding rhicadhesin, a universal rhizobial adhesion protein, and/or other cell-surface-binding proteins. Four such -dhering roteins (Rap) were revealed in bv. strain R200. The binding is mediated by homologous Ra domains in these proteins. One member of the Rap protein family, named RapA1, is a secreted calcium-binding protein, which are also properties expected for rhicadhesin. However, the size of the protein (24 kDa instead of 14 kDa) and its distribution among different rhizobia (present in only biovars and instead of all members of ) argue against RapA1 being rhicadhesin. Protein RapA1 consists of two homologous Ra domains and agglutinates R200 cells by binding to specific receptors located at one cell pole during exponential growth. Expression of these cell-surface receptors was detected only in rhizobia that produce the RapA proteins. The authors propose that the homologous Ra domains, found to be present also in other proteins with different structure, represent lectin domains, which confer upon these proteins the ability to recognize their cognate carbohydrate structures.

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2001-03-01
2020-03-29
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