Identification of SopE2 from Salmonella typhimurium, a conserved guanine nucleotide exchange factor for Cdc42 of the host cell

Mol Microbiol. 2000 Jun;36(6):1206-21. doi: 10.1046/j.1365-2958.2000.01933.x.


Salmonella typhimurium translocates effector proteins into host cells via the SPI1 type III secretion system to induce responses such as membrane ruffling and internalization by non-phagocytic cells. Activation of the host cellular RhoGTPase Cdc42 is thought to be a key event during internalization. The translocated Salmonella protein SopE is an activator for Cdc42. Because SopE is absent from most S. typhimurium strains it remains unclear whether all S. typhimurium strains rely on activation of Cdc42 to invade host cells. We have identified SopE2, a translocated effector protein common to all S. typhimurium strains. SopE2 is a guanine nucleotide exchange factor for Cdc42 and shows 69% sequence similarity to SopE. Analysis of S. typhimurium mutants demonstrated that SopE2 plays a role in recruitment of the actin-nucleating Arp2/3 complex to the membrane ruffles and in efficient host cell invasion. Transfection experiments showed that SopE2 is sufficient to activate host cellular Cdc42, to recruit the actin-nucleating Arp2/3 complex and to induce actin cytoskeletal rearrangements and internalization. In conclusion, as a result of SopE2 all S. typhimurium strains tested have the capacity to activate Cdc42 signalling inside host cells which is important to ensure efficient entry.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Actin-Related Protein 2
  • Actin-Related Protein 3
  • Actins / metabolism
  • Amino Acid Sequence
  • Animals
  • Bacterial Proteins / genetics
  • Bacterial Proteins / metabolism*
  • Bacterial Proteins / physiology
  • COS Cells
  • Cell Surface Extensions
  • Cytoskeletal Proteins*
  • Cytoskeleton / physiology
  • Endocytosis
  • Genes, Bacterial
  • Guanine Nucleotide Exchange Factors / genetics
  • Guanine Nucleotide Exchange Factors / metabolism*
  • Guanine Nucleotide Exchange Factors / physiology
  • Membrane Transport Proteins*
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Salmonella typhimurium / genetics
  • Salmonella typhimurium / metabolism*
  • Salmonella typhimurium / pathogenicity
  • cdc42 GTP-Binding Protein / metabolism*


  • Actin-Related Protein 2
  • Actin-Related Protein 3
  • Actins
  • Bacterial Proteins
  • Cytoskeletal Proteins
  • Guanine Nucleotide Exchange Factors
  • Membrane Transport Proteins
  • Salmonella invasion protein C
  • SopE protein, Salmonella
  • invG protein, Salmonella typhimurium
  • cdc42 GTP-Binding Protein