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Journal of biomedicine & biotechnology

Top-down proteomic identification of furin-cleaved α-subunit of Shiga toxin 2 from Escherichia coli O157:H7 using MALDI-TOF-TOF-MS/MS.


PMID 21331368

Abstract

A method has been developed to identify the α-subunit of Shiga toxin 2 (α-Stx2) from Escherichia coli O157:H7 using matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization time-of-flight-time-of-flight tandem mass spectrometry (MALDI-TOF-TOF-MS/MS) and top-down proteomics using web-based software developed in-house. Expression of Stx2 was induced by culturing E. coli O157:H7 on solid agar supplemented with an antibiotic that elicits the bacterial SOS-response. Bacterial cell lysates were incubated in the presence of furin, a human enzyme, that cleaves α-Stx2 into A1 (~28 kDa) and A2 (~5 kDa) protein fragments. A subsequent disulfide reduction step unlinked A1 from A2. MALDI-TOF-MS of the furin-digested/disulfide-reduced sample showed a peak at mass-to-charge (m/z) 5286 that corresponded to the A2 fragment. No peak was observed that corresponded to the A1 fragment although its presence was confirmed by bottom-up proteomics. The peak at m/z 5286 was definitively identified by MALDI-TOF-TOF-MS/MS and top-down proteomics as the A2 fragment of α-Stx2.

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