Publications by authors named "Frank A Mindlin"

2 Publications

  • Page 1 of 1

Structure of the full-length Clostridium difficile toxin B.

Nat Struct Mol Biol 2019 08 15;26(8):712-719. Epub 2019 Jul 15.

Department of Physiology and Biophysics, University of California, Irvine, Irvine, CA, USA.

Clostridium difficile is an opportunistic pathogen that establishes in the colon when the gut microbiota are disrupted by antibiotics or disease. C. difficile infection (CDI) is largely caused by two virulence factors, TcdA and TcdB. Here, we report a 3.87-Å-resolution crystal structure of TcdB holotoxin that captures a unique conformation of TcdB at endosomal pH. Complementary biophysical studies suggest that the C-terminal combined repetitive oligopeptides (CROPs) domain of TcdB is dynamic and can sample open and closed conformations that may facilitate modulation of TcdB activity in response to environmental and cellular cues during intoxication. Furthermore, we report three crystal structures of TcdB-antibody complexes that reveal how antibodies could specifically inhibit the activities of individual TcdB domains. Our studies provide novel insight into the structure and function of TcdB holotoxin and identify intrinsic vulnerabilities that could be exploited to develop new therapeutics and vaccines for the treatment of CDI.
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August 2019

Identifying weak interdomain interactions that stabilize the supertertiary structure of the N-terminal tandem PDZ domains of PSD-95.

Nat Commun 2018 09 13;9(1):3724. Epub 2018 Sep 13.

Department of Physics and Astronomy, Clemson University, Clemson, SC, USA.

Previous studies of the N-terminal PDZ tandem from PSD-95 produced divergent models and failed to identify interdomain contacts stabilizing the structure. We used ensemble and single-molecule FRET along with replica-exchange molecular dynamics to fully characterize the energy landscape. Simulations and experiments identified two conformations: an open-like conformation with a small contact interface stabilized by salt bridges, and a closed-like conformation with a larger contact interface stabilized by surface-exposed hydrophobic residues. Both interfaces were confirmed experimentally. Proximity of interdomain contacts to the binding pockets may explain the observed coupling between conformation and binding. The low-energy barrier between conformations allows submillisecond dynamics, which were time-averaged in previous NMR and FRET studies. Moreover, the small contact interfaces were likely overridden by lattice contacts as crystal structures were rarely sampled in simulations. Our hybrid approach can identify transient interdomain interactions, which are abundant in multidomain proteins yet often obscured by dynamic averaging.
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September 2018