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Toxins 2016, 8(10), 305; doi:10.3390/toxins8100305

Structure, Biology, and Therapeutic Application of Toxin–Antitoxin Systems in Pathogenic Bacteria

Research Institute of Pharmaceutical Sciences, College of Pharmacy, Seoul National University, Seoul 151-742, Korea
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Academic Editor: Anton Meinhart
Received: 14 July 2016 / Revised: 17 October 2016 / Accepted: 18 October 2016 / Published: 22 October 2016
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Toxin-Antitoxin System in Bacteria)
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Abstract

Bacterial toxin–antitoxin (TA) systems have received increasing attention for their diverse identities, structures, and functional implications in cell cycle arrest and survival against environmental stresses such as nutrient deficiency, antibiotic treatments, and immune system attacks. In this review, we describe the biological functions and the auto-regulatory mechanisms of six different types of TA systems, among which the type II TA system has been most extensively studied. The functions of type II toxins include mRNA/tRNA cleavage, gyrase/ribosome poison, and protein phosphorylation, which can be neutralized by their cognate antitoxins. We mainly explore the similar but divergent structures of type II TA proteins from 12 important pathogenic bacteria, including various aspects of protein–protein interactions. Accumulating knowledge about the structure–function correlation of TA systems from pathogenic bacteria has facilitated a novel strategy to develop antibiotic drugs that target specific pathogens. These molecules could increase the intrinsic activity of the toxin by artificially interfering with the intermolecular network of the TA systems. View Full-Text
Keywords: toxin–antitoxin system; type II; structure–function correlation; pathogenic bacteria; novel antibiotic target toxin–antitoxin system; type II; structure–function correlation; pathogenic bacteria; novel antibiotic target
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Lee, K.-Y.; Lee, B.-J. Structure, Biology, and Therapeutic Application of Toxin–Antitoxin Systems in Pathogenic Bacteria. Toxins 2016, 8, 305.

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