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Research at St Andrews

Anti-microbial properties of histone H2A from skin secretions of rainbow trout, Oncorhynchus mykiss

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

DOI

Author(s)

Jorge Fernandes, Graham Duncan Kemp, MG Molle, Valerie Jane Smith

School/Research organisations

Abstract

Skin exudates of rainbow trout contain a potent 13.6 kDa antimicrobial protein which, from partial internal amino acid sequencing, peptide mass fingerprinting, matrix-associated laser desorption/ionization MS and amino acid analysis, seems to be historic H2A, acetylated at the N-terminus. The protein, purified to homogeneity by ion-exchange and reversed-phase chromatography, exhibits powerful anti-bacterial activity against Grain-positive bacteria, with minimal inhibitory concentrations in the submicromolar range. Kinetic analysis revealed that at a concentration of 0.3 muM all test bacteria lose viability after 30 min incubation. Weaker activity is also displayed against the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae. The protein is salt-sensitive and has no haemolytic activity towards trout erythrocytes at concentrations below 0.3 muM. Reconstitution of the protein in a planar lipid bilayer strongly disturbs the membrane but does not form stable ion channels, indicating that its anti-bacterial activity is probably not due to pore-forming properties. This is the first report to show that, in addition to its classical function in the cell, histone H2A has extremely strong anti-microbial properties and could therefore help contribute to protection against bacterial invasion.

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Details

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)611-620
Number of pages10
JournalBiochemical Journal
Volume368
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2002

    Research areas

  • anti-bacterial protein, epithelium, mucosal immunity, nucleosome, PORE-FORMING PROPERTIES, ANTIMICROBIAL PEPTIDE, EPIDERMAL MUCUS, PROTEIN, FISH, EXPRESSION, FLOUNDER, SEQUENCE, MEMBRANE, PLEUROCIDIN

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