Modification and Assembly of a Versatile Lactonase for Bacterial Quorum Quenching

Thumbnail Image


Publication or External Link





Rhoads, M.K.; Hauk, P.; Gupta, V.; Bookstaver, M.L.; Stephens, K.; Payne, G.F.; Bentley, W.E. Modification and Assembly of a Versatile Lactonase for Bacterial Quorum Quenching. Molecules 2018, 23, 341.


This work sets out to provide a self-assembled biopolymer capsule activated with a multi-functional enzyme for localized delivery. This enzyme, SsoPox, which is a lactonase and phosphotriesterase, provides a means of interrupting bacterial communication pathways that have been shown to mediate pathogenicity. Here we demonstrate the capability to express, purify and attach SsoPox to the natural biopolymer chitosan, preserving its activity to “neutralize” long-chain autoinducer-1 (AI-1) communication molecules. Attachment is shown via non-specific binding and by engineering tyrosine and glutamine affinity ‘tags’ at the C-terminus for covalent linkage. Subsequent degradation of AI-1, in this case N-(3-oxododecanoyl)-l-homoserine lactone (OdDHL), serves to “quench” bacterial quorum sensing (QS), silencing intraspecies communication. By attaching enzymes to pH-responsive chitosan that, in turn, can be assembled into various forms, we demonstrate device-based flexibility for enzyme delivery. Specifically, we have assembled quorum-quenching capsules consisting of an alginate inner core and an enzyme “decorated” chitosan shell that are shown to preclude bacterial QS crosstalk, minimizing QS mediated behaviors.