The lack of binding of VEK-30, an internal peptide from the group A streptococcal M-like protein, PAM, to murine plasminogen is due to two amino acid replacements in the plasminogen kringle-2 domain

Qihua Fu, Mariana Figuera-Losada, Victoria A. Ploplis, Sara Cnudde, James H. Geiger, Mary Prorok, Francis J. Castellino

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

17 Scopus citations

Abstract

VEK-30, a 30-amino acid internal peptide present within a streptococcal M-like plasminogen (Pg)-binding protein (PAM) from Gram-positive group-A streptococci (GAS), represents an epitope within PAM that shows high affinity for the lysine binding site (LBS) of the kringle-2 (K2) domain of human (h)Pg. VEK-30 does not interact with this same region of mouse (m)Pg, despite the high conservation of the mK2- and hK2-LBS. To identify the molecular basis for the species specificity of this interaction, hPg and mPg variants were generated, including an hPg chimera with the mK2 sequence and an mPg chimera containing the hK2 sequence. The binding of synthetic VEK-30 to these variants was studied by surface plasmon resonance. The data revealed that, in otherwise intact Pg, the species specificity of VEK-30 binding in these two cases is entirely dictated by two K2 residues that are different between hPg and mPg, namely, Arg-220 of hPg, which is a Gly in mPg, and Leu-222 of hPg, which is a Pro in mPg, neither of which are members of the canonical K2-LBS. Neither the activation of hPg, nor the enzymatic activity of its activated product, plasmin (hPm), are compromised by replacing these two amino acids by their murine counterparts. It is also demonstrated that hPg is more susceptible to activation to hPm after complexation with VEK-30 and that this property is greatly reduced as a result of the R220G and L222P replacements in hPg. These mechanisms for accumulation of protease activity on GAS likely contribute to the virulence of PAM +-GAS strains and identify targets for new therapeutic interventions.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1580-1587
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Biological Chemistry
Volume283
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 18 2008

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology

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