Current Microbiology

, Volume 64, Issue 4, pp 343–348 | Cite as

Evidence for Two Putative Holin-Like Peptides Encoding Genes of Bacillus pumilus Strain WAPB4

  • Ratchaneewan AunpadEmail author
  • Watanalai Panbangred


An open reading frame encoding a 71-amino acid BhlA bacteriocin-related holin-like peptide was present upstream of 86-amino acid holin-like peptide, xhlB, encoding gene in the genome of Bacillus pumilus strain WAPB4. Analysis of BhlA using TMHMM server suggested one putative transmembrane domain at the N-terminal part and a number of highly charged amino acid residues at the C-terminal part. XhlB of B. pumilus strain WAPB4 composed of two putative transmembrane domains separated by a β-turn, and numerous charged residues in the C-terminus. The dual start motifs were found in both BhlA and XhlB. Structural analysis of their sequence revealed features characteristic for holin. To analyze the effect of BhlA on bacteria cell, its ORF was cloned and expressed in Escherichia coli BL21(DE3). Expression of holin-like peptide, BhlA, was found to be toxic to the host cell. The site of action of BhlA is on the cell membrane and caused bacterial death by cell membrane disruption as clearly demonstrated by transmission electron microscopy or TEM.


Endolysin Common Structural Feature Charge Amino Acid Residue Putative Transmembrane Domain Cell Membrane Disruption 
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This work was supported by a research grant for new scholars from the Commission on Higher Education in collaboration with the Thailand Research Fund and partially supported by the National Research Council of Thailand.


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© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Graduate Program in Biomedical Sciences, Faculty of Allied Health SciencesThammasat UniversityPathumthaiThailand
  2. 2.Department of Biotechnology, Faculty of ScienceMahidol UniversityBangkokThailand

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