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Oligopeptidase B, a processing enzyme of the prolyl oligopeptidase family, is considered as an important virulence factor in trypanosomiasis. Trypanosoma cruzi oligopeptidase B (OPBTc) is involved in host cell invasion by generating a Ca(2+)-agonist necessary for recruitment and fusion of host lysosomes at the site of parasite attachment. The underlying(More)
α(2) macroglobulins (α(2)Ms) are broad-spectrum protease inhibitors that play essential roles in the innate immune system of eukaryotic species. These large, multi-domain proteins are characterized by a broad-spectrum bait region and an internal thioester, which, upon cleavage, becomes covalently associated to the target protease, allowing its entrapment by(More)
UNLABELLED Human pathogens frequently use protein mimicry to manipulate host cells in order to promote their survival. Here we show that the opportunistic pathogen Pseudomonas aeruginosa synthesizes a structural homolog of the human α2-macroglobulin, a large-spectrum protease inhibitor and important player of innate immunity. Small-angle X-ray scattering(More)
Type III secretion systems (T3SS) are macromolecular complexes that translocate a wide number of effector proteins into eukaryotic host cells. Once within the cytoplasm, many T3SS effectors mimic the structure and/or function of eukaryotic proteins in order to manipulate signaling cascades, and thus play pivotal roles in colonization, invasion, survival and(More)
Proteases are implicated in several aspects of the physiology of microorganisms, as well as in host-pathogen interactions. Aminopeptidases are also emerging as novel drug targets in infectious agents. In this study, we have characterized an aminopeptidase from the spirochete Borrelia burgdorferi, the causative agent of Lyme disease. The aminopeptidolytic(More)
The bacterial cell wall is a complex three-dimensional structure that protects the cell from environmental stress and ensures its shape. The biosynthesis of its main component, the peptidoglycan, involves the coordination of activities of proteins present in the cytoplasm, the membrane, and the periplasm, some of which also interact with the bacterial(More)
BACKGROUND Triatomines are hematophagous insects that act as vectors of Chagas disease. Rhodnius neglectus is one of these kissing bugs found, contributing to the transmission of this American trypanosomiasis. The saliva of hematophagous arthropods contains bioactive molecules responsible for counteracting host haemostatic, inflammatory, and immune(More)
A ternary complex of the black-eyed pea trypsin and chymotrypsin inhibitor (BTCI) with trypsin and chymotrypsin was crystallized by the sitting-drop vapour-diffusion method with 0.1 M HEPES pH 7.5, 10%(w/v) polyethylene glycol 6000 and 5%(v/v) 2-methyl-2,4-pentanediol as precipitant. BTCI is a small protein with 83 amino-acid residues isolated from Vigna(More)
A Monte Carlo study of the distribution functions for the end-to-end distance and radius of gyration for hard-sphere models of poly(glycine) and poly(L-alanine) random coils has been conducted in the chain-length range n = 3 to 100 monomer units for both unperturbed chains and chains perturbed by long-range interactions (excluded volume effects). The(More)