The O-antigen lipopolysaccharides on bacterial surface contain variable number of oligosaccharide repeat units with their length having a modal distribution specific to the bacterial strain. The polysaccharide length distribution is controlled by the proteins called polysaccharide co-polymerases (PCPs), which are embedded in the inner membrane in Gram-negative bacteria and form homo oligomers. The 3D structures of periplasmic domains of several PCPs have been determined and provided the first insights into the possible mechanism of polysaccharide length determination mechanism. Here we review the current knowledge of structure and function of these polysaccharide length regulators.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Molecular Biology
Kalynych, S., Valvano, M. A., & Cygler, M. (2012). Polysaccharide co-polymerases: the enigmatic conductors of the O-antigen assembly orchestra. Protein engineering, design & selection : PEDS, 25(11), 797-802. https://doi.org/10.1093/protein/gzs075