Structural basis for the recognition of lysozyme by MliC, a periplasmic lysozyme inhibitor in Gram-negative bacteria

Soohwan Yum, Moon Jong Kim, Yongbin Xu, Xiao Ling Jin, Hee Young Yoo, Ji Won Park, Ji Hee Gong, Kwang Min Choe, Bok Luel Lee, Nam Chul Ha

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44 Citations (Scopus)


Lysozymes are an important component of the innate immune system of animals that hydrolyze peptidoglycan, the major bacterial cell wall constituent. Many bacteria have contrived various means of dealing with this bactericidal enzyme, one of which is to produce lysozyme inhibitors. Recently, a novel family of bacterial lysozyme inhibitors was identified in various Gram-negative bacteria, named MliC (membrane bound lysozyme inhibitor of C-type lysozyme). Here, we report the crystal structure of Pseudomonas aeruginosa MliC in complex with chicken egg white lysozyme. Combined with mutational study, the complex structure demonstrates that the invariant loop of MliC plays a crucial role in the inhibition of the lysozyme by its insertion to the active site cleft of the lysozyme, where the loop forms hydrogen and ionic bonds with the catalytic residues. Since MliC family members have been implicated as putative colonization or virulence factors, the structures and mechanism of action of MliC will be of relevance to the control of bacterial growth in animal hosts.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)244-248
Number of pages5
JournalBiochemical and Biophysical Research Communications
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2009 Jan 9

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This study required the use of the beamline 4A at Pohang Accelerator Laboratory (Pohang, Korea). This work was supported by Korea Research Foundation Grant KRF-2005-C00483 to N.-C. H., and the Korea Science and Engineering Foundation (KOSEF) grant funded by the Korea government (MEST) (R01-2007-000-11733-0) to K.-M.C.

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Biophysics
  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology


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