The pearl jubilee of microcin J25: thirty years of research on an exceptional lasso peptide

Fernando Baquero, Konstantinos Beis, David J. Craik, Yanyan Li, A. James Link, Sylvie Rebuffat, Raúl Salomón, Konstantin Severinov, Séverine Zirah, Julian D. Hegemann

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


Covering: 1992 up to 2023 Since their discovery, lasso peptides went from peculiarities to be recognized as a major family of ribosomally synthesized and post-translationally modified peptide (RiPP) natural products that were shown to be spread throughout the bacterial kingdom. Microcin J25 was first described in 1992, making it one of the earliest known lasso peptides. No other lasso peptide has since then been studied to such an extent as microcin J25, yet, previous review articles merely skimmed over all the research done on this exceptional lasso peptide. Therefore, to commemorate the 30th anniversary of its first report, we give a comprehensive overview of all literature related to microcin J25. This review article spans the early work towards the discovery of microcin J25, its biosynthetic gene cluster, and the elucidation of its three-dimensional, threaded lasso structure. Furthermore, the current knowledge about the biosynthesis of microcin J25 and lasso peptides in general is summarized and a detailed overview is given on the biological activities associated with microcin J25, including means of self-immunity, uptake into target bacteria, inhibition of the Gram-negative RNA polymerase, and the effects of microcin J25 on mitochondria. The in vitro and in vivo models used to study the potential utility of microcin J25 in a (veterinary) medicine context are discussed and the efforts that went into employing the microcin J25 scaffold in bioengineering contexts are summed up.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)469-511
Number of pages43
JournalNatural Product Reports
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jan 2 2024
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Biochemistry
  • Drug Discovery
  • Organic Chemistry


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