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DNA Substrate-Induced Activation of the Agrobacterium VirB/VirD4 Type IV Secretion System

Abstract : ABSTRACT The bitopic membrane protein VirB10 of the Agrobacterium VirB/VirD4 type IV secretion system (T4SS) undergoes a structural transition in response to sensing of ATP binding or hydrolysis by the channel ATPases VirD4 and VirB11. This transition, detectable as a change in protease susceptibility, is required for DNA substrate passage through the translocation channel. Here, we present evidence that DNA substrate engagement with VirD4 and VirB11 also is required for activation of VirB10. Several DNA substrates (oncogenic T-DNA and plasmids RSF1010 and pCloDF13) induced the VirB10 conformational change, each by mechanisms requiring relaxase processing at cognate oriT sequences. VirD2 relaxase deleted of its translocation signal or any of the characterized relaxases produced in the absence of cognate DNA substrates did not induce the structural transition. Translocated effector proteins, e.g., VirE2, VirE3, and VirF, also did not induce the transition. By mutational analyses, we supplied evidence that the N-terminal periplasmic loop of VirD4, in addition to its catalytic site, is essential for early-stage DNA substrate transfer and the VirB10 conformational change. Further studies of VirB11 mutants established that three T4SS-mediated processes, DNA transfer, protein transfer, and pilus production, can be uncoupled and that the latter two processes proceed independently of the VirB10 conformational change. Our findings support a general model whereby DNA ligand binding with VirD4 and VirB11 stimulates ATP binding/hydrolysis, which in turn activates VirB10 through a structural transition. This transition confers an open-channel configuration enabling passage of the DNA substrate to the cell surface.
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Submitted on : Wednesday, June 30, 2021 - 2:22:12 PM
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E. Cascales, Krishnamohan Atmakuri, Mayukh Sarkar, Peter Christie. DNA Substrate-Induced Activation of the Agrobacterium VirB/VirD4 Type IV Secretion System. Journal of Bacteriology, American Society for Microbiology, 2013, 195 (11), pp.2691-2704. ⟨10.1128/JB.00114-13⟩. ⟨hal-03274786⟩



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