Structural characterisation of the catalytic domain of botulinum neurotoxin X - High activity and unique substrate specificity

Geoffrey Masuyer, Sicai Zhang, Sulyman Barkho, Yi Shen, Linda Henriksson, Sara Košenina, Min Dong, Pål Stenmark

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Botulinum neurotoxins (BoNTs) are among the most potent toxins known and are also used to treat an increasing number of medical disorders. There are seven well-established serotypes (BoNT/A-G), which all act as zinc-dependent endopeptidases targeting specific members of the SNARE proteins required for synaptic vesicle exocytosis in neurons. A new toxin serotype, BoNT/X, was recently identified. It cleaves not only the canonical targets, vesicle associated membrane proteins (VAMP) 1/2/3 at a unique site, but also has the unique ability to cleave VAMP4/5 and Ykt6. Here we report the 1.35 Å X-ray crystal structure of the light chain of BoNT/X (LC/X). LC/X shares the core fold common to all other BoNTs, demonstrating that LC/X is a bona fide member of BoNT-LCs. We found that access to the catalytic pocket of LC/X is more restricted, and the regions lining the catalytic pocket are not conserved compared to other BoNTs. Kinetic studies revealed that LC/X cleaves VAMP1 with a ten times higher efficiency than BoNT/B and the tetanus neurotoxin. The structural information provides a molecular basis to understand the convergence/divergence between BoNT/X and other BoNTs, to develop effective LC inhibitors, and to engineer new scientific tools and therapeutic toxins targeting distinct SNARE proteins in cells.

Original languageEnglish
Article number4518
JournalScientific Reports
Volume8
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 14 Mar 2018

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General

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