Direct binding of polymeric GBP1 to LPS disrupts bacterial cell envelope functions.
In the outer membrane of gram-negative bacteria, O-antigen segments of lipopolysaccharide (LPS) form a chemomechanical barrier, whereas lipid A moieties anchor LPS molecules. Upon infection, human guanylate binding protein-1 (hGBP1) colocalizes with intracellular gram-negative bacterial pathogens, facilitates bacterial killing, promotes activation of the lipid A sensor caspase-4, and blocks actin-driven dissemination of the enteric pathogen Shigella. The underlying molecular mechanism for hGBP1's diverse antimicrobial functions is unknown. Here, we demonstrate that hGBP1 binds directly to LPS and induces "detergent-like" LPS clustering through protein polymerization. Binding of polymerizing hGBP1 to the bacterial surface disrupts the O-antigen barrier, thereby unmasking lipid A, eliciting caspase-4 recruitment, enhancing antibacterial activity of polymyxin B, and blocking the function of the Shigella outer membrane actin motility factor IcsA. These findings characterize hGBP1 as an LPS-binding surfactant that destabilizes the rigidity of the outer membrane to exert pleiotropic effects on the functionality of gram-negative bacterial cell envelopes.
Kutsch, M; Sistemich, L; Lesser, CF; Goldberg, MB; Herrmann, C; Coers, J
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