Structure and Function of Clostridium difficile Toxins
To understand the structure function relationship of a protein toxin it is essential to first have a clear understanding of the functional activities. For the purpose of this brief overview on the structure-function relationship of Clostridium difficile toxins A and B an attempt will be made to concentrate on known or proposed functions as opposed to effects. This can be best exemplified by comparing the haemagglutinating activity of toxin A which is mediated by binding to a specific tri-saccharide (a known function), to the ability of both toxins to cause cell rounding by disruption of the cell cytoskeleton (an effect exerted by unknown mechanisms and for which particular functions have not been identified). This brief overview will attempt to identify known functions of the toxin molecules, to highlight what is known of secondary structure and to comment on identified structure-function relationships.
KeywordsClostridium Difficile Diphtheria Toxin Rabbit Erythrocyte Native Toxin Denature Form
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