Streptococcal-host interactions: Structural and functional analysis of a Streptococcus sanguis receptor for a human salivary glycoprotein

Donald R. Demuth, Ellis E. Golub, Daniel Malamud

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


    Colonization of oral tissues by Streptococcus sanguis may be influenced by a mucin-like salivary glycoprotein (SAG) through a calcium-dependent interaction with a specific bacterial receptor. We report the nucleotide and deduced amino acid sequence of the S. sanguis receptor (SSP-5) and show that this protein may bind sialic acid residues of SAG. The SSP-5 protein contains three unique structural domains, two of which consist of repetitive amino acid sequences. The N-terminal domain is comprised of four tandem copies of an 82-residue repeat which exhibits homology to M protein of Streptococcus pyogenes. This region is highly charged and predicted to be α-helical. A second hydrophilic repetitive domain consists of three copies of a 39-amino acid sequence containing 30% proline flanked by nonrepetitive proline-rich sequence. The third domain consists of 48% proline and resides near the C terminus of the protein. Secondary structure analysis of the SSP-5 sequence also identified four potential helix-turn-helix motifs that resembled E-F hand calcium binding domains. The SSP-5 protein is highly homologous to a surface antigen expressed by the mutans streptococci and the domain structure of SSP-5 is conserved within this family of proteins. The interactions of SSP-5 and of intact S. sanguis with SAG were inhibited by neuraminidase digestion of the salivary glycoprotein and by simple sugars containing sialic acid, suggesting that sialic acid is the primary ligand involved in the binding reaction.

    Original languageEnglish (US)
    Pages (from-to)7120-7126
    Number of pages7
    JournalJournal of Biological Chemistry
    Issue number13
    StatePublished - May 5 1990

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Biochemistry
    • Molecular Biology
    • Cell Biology


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