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Original Research ARTICLE Provisionally accepted The full-text will be published soon. Notify me

Front. Genet. | doi: 10.3389/fgene.2019.00797

Bioinformatic exploration of metal-binding proteome of zoonotic pathogen Orientia tsutsugamushi

  • 1Central University of Himachal Pradesh, India
  • 2Indian Veterinary Research Institute (IVRI), India
  • 3John Innes Centre (JIC), United Kingdom

Metal ions are involved in many essential biological processes and are crucial for the survival of all organisms. Identification of metal-binding proteins (MBPs) of human affecting pathogens may provide the blueprint for understanding biological metal usage and their putative roles in pathogenesis. This study is focused on the analysis of MBPs from Orientia tsutsugamushi (Ott), a causal agent of scrub typhus in humans. A total of 321 proteins were predicted as putative MBPs, based on sequence search and 3D-structure analysis. Majority of proteins could bind with magnesium, and the order of metal binding was Mg>Ca>Zn>Mn>Fe>Cd>Ni>Co>Cu respectively. The predicted MBPs were functionally classified into nine broad classes. Among them, gene expression and regulation, metabolism, cell signaling and transport classes were dominant. It was noted that the putative MBPs were localized in all subcellular compartments of Ott, but majorly found in the cytoplasm. Additionally, it was revealed that out of 321predicted MBPs 245 proteins were putative bacterial toxins and among them, 98 proteins were non-homologous to humans proteome. Sixty putative MBPs showed the ability to interact with drug or drug-like molecules, which indicate that they may be used as broad-spectrum drug targets. These predicted MBPs from Ott -could play vital role(s) in various cellular activities and virulence, hence may serve as plausible therapeutic targets to design metal-based drugs to curtail its infection.

Keywords: Orientia tsutsugamushi, Metal-binding proteins, therapeutic targets, structure modeling, bioinformatics

Received: 08 May 2019; Accepted: 30 Jul 2019.

Copyright: © 2019 Sharma, Sharma, Singh and Verma. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author(s) and the copyright owner(s) are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.

* Correspondence: Dr. Shailender K. Verma, John Innes Centre (JIC), Norwich, United Kingdom,