Title: X-ray crystallography shines a light on pore-forming toxins
Authors: Johnstone, BA
Christie, MP
Morton, CJ
Parker, MW
Issue Year: 2021
Abstract A common form of cellular attack by pathogenic bacteria is to secrete pore-forming toxins (PFTs). Capable of forming transmembrane pores in various biological membranes, PFTs have also been identified in a diverse range of other organisms such as sea anemones, earthworms and even mushrooms and trees. The mechanism of pore formation by PFTs is associated with substantial conformational changes in going from the water-soluble to transmembrane states of the protein. The determination of the crystal structures for numerous PFTs has shed much light on our understanding of these proteins. Other than elucidating the atomic structural details of PFTs and the conformational changes that must occur for pore formation, crystal structures have revealed structural homology that has led to the discovery of new PFTs and new PFT families. Here we review some key crystallographic results together with complimentary approaches for studying PFTs. We discuss how these studies have impacted our understanding of PFT function and guided research into biotechnical applications.
URI: https://publications.svi.edu.au/publications/7907
Other Identifiers 10.1016/bs.mie.2021.01.001
Publication type Review; Book Chapter