Antimicrobial Lasso Peptide Cloacaenodin Utilizes a Unique TonB-Dependent Transporter to Access Susceptible Bacteria

Drew V. Carson, Reecan J. Juarez, Truc Do, Zhongyue J. Yang, A. James Link

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

The development of new antimicrobial agents effective against Gram-negative bacteria remains a major challenge in drug discovery. The lasso peptide cloacaenodin has potent antimicrobial activity against multiple strains in the Enterobacter genus, one of the ESKAPE pathogens. Here, we show that cloacaenodin uses a previously uncharacterized TonB-dependent transporter, which we name CloU, to cross the outer membrane (OM) of susceptible bacteria. Inner membrane transport is mediated by the protein SbmA. CloU is distinct from the known OM transporters (FhuA and PupB) utilized by other antimicrobial lasso peptides and thus offers important insight into the spectrum of activity of cloacaenodin. Using knowledge of the transport pathway to predict other cloacaenodin-susceptible strains, we demonstrate the activity of cloacaenodin against clinical isolates of Enterobacter and of a Kluyvera strain. Further, we use molecular dynamics simulations and mutagenesis of CloU to explain the variation in cloacaenodin susceptibility observed across different strains of Enterobacter. This work expands the currently limited understanding of lasso peptide uptake and advances the potential of cloacaenodin as an antibiotic.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)981-991
Number of pages11
JournalACS chemical biology
Volume19
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 19 2024

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Medicine

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