1887

Abstract

Spores of , the causative agent of anthrax, possess an exosporium. As the outer surface layer of these mature spores, the exosporium represents the primary contact surface between the spore and environment/host and is a site of spore antigens. The exosporium was isolated from the endospores of the wild-type Ames strain, from a derivative of the Ames strain cured of plasmid pXO2, and from a previously isolated pXO1, pXO2 doubly cured strain, UM23Cl2. The protein profiles of SDS-PAGE-separated exosporium extracts were similar for all three. This suggests that avirulent variants lacking either or both plasmids are realistic models for studying the exosporium from spores of . A number of loosely adsorbed proteins were identified from amino acid sequences determined by either nanospray-MS/MS or N-terminal sequencing. Salt and detergent washing of the exosporium fragments removed these and revealed proteins that are likely to represent structural/integral exosporium proteins. Seven proteins were identified in washed exosporium: alanine racemase, inosine hydrolase, ExsF, CotY, ExsY, CotB and a novel protein, named ExsK. CotY, ExsY and CotB are homologues of outer spore coat proteins, but ExsF and ExsK are specific to and other members of the group.

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2004-02-01
2019-10-13
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