Biochemical and biophysical characterization of in vitro folded outer membrane porin PorA of Neisseria meningitidis

Biochim Biophys Acta. 2000 Apr 5;1464(2):284-98. doi: 10.1016/s0005-2736(00)00155-3.


Two subtypes of the outer membrane porin PorA of Neisseria meningitidis, P1.6 and P1.7,16, were folded in vitro after overexpression in, and isolation from Escherichia coli. The PorA porins could be folded efficiently by quick dilution in an appropriate buffer containing the detergent n-dodecyl-N, N-dimethyl-1-ammonio-3-propanesulphonate. Although the two PorA porins are highly homologous, they required different acidities for optimal folding, that is, a pH above the pI was needed for efficient folding. Furthermore, whereas trimers of PorA P1.7,16 were almost completely stable in 2% sodium dodecyl sulphate (SDS), those of P1.6 dissociated in the presence of SDS. The higher electrophoretic mobility of the in vitro folded porins could be explained by the stable association of the RmpM protein to the porins in vivo. This association of RmpM contributes to the stability of the porins. The P1.6 pores were moderately cation-selective and displayed a single-channel conductance of 2.8 nS in 1 M KCl. The PorA P1.6 pores, but not the PorA P1.7,16 pores, showed an unusual non-linear dependence of the single-channel conductance on the salt concentration of the subphase. We hypothesize that a cluster of three negatively charged residues in L5 of P1.6 is responsible for the higher conductance at low salt concentrations.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Escherichia coli / genetics
  • Escherichia coli / metabolism
  • Gene Expression
  • Inclusion Bodies / metabolism
  • Isopropyl Thiogalactoside
  • Liposomes / chemistry
  • Neisseria meningitidis / genetics
  • Neisseria meningitidis / metabolism*
  • Plasmids
  • Porins / chemistry
  • Porins / genetics
  • Porins / metabolism*
  • Protein Folding
  • Recombinant Proteins / metabolism
  • Sodium Dodecyl Sulfate
  • Trypsin


  • Liposomes
  • Porins
  • Recombinant Proteins
  • porin protein, Neisseria
  • Isopropyl Thiogalactoside
  • Sodium Dodecyl Sulfate
  • Trypsin