1887

Abstract

The outer membrane (OM) is a formidable permeability barrier that protects Gram-negative bacteria from detergents and antibiotics. It possesses exquisite lipid asymmetry, requiring the placement and retention of lipopolysaccharides (LPS) in the outer leaflet, and phospholipids (PLs) in the inner leaflet. To establish OM lipid asymmetry, LPS are transported from the inner membrane (IM) directly to the outer leaflet of the OM. In contrast, mechanisms for PL trafficking across the cell envelope are much less understood. In this review, we summarize and discuss recent advances in our understanding of PL transport, making parallel comparisons to well-established pathways for OM lipoprotein (Lol) and LPS (Lpt). Insights into putative PL transport systems highlight possible connections back to the ‘Bayer bridges’, adhesion zones between the IM and the OM that had been observed more than 50 years ago, and proposed as passages for export of OM components, including LPS and PLs.

Funding
This study was supported by the:
  • National Medical Research Council (Award MOH-000145)
    • Principle Award Recipient: Shu-SinChng
  • This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License. The Microbiology Society waived the open access fees for this article.
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2022-04-06
2022-05-18
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