Camelysin is a novel surface metalloproteinase from Bacillus cereus

Infect Immun. 2004 Jan;72(1):219-28. doi: 10.1128/IAI.72.1.219-228.2004.


Bacillus cereus frequently causes food poisoning or nosocomial diseases. Vegetative cells express the novel surface metalloproteinase camelysin (casein-cleaving metalloproteinase) during exponential growth on complex, peptide-rich media. Camelysin is strongly bound to the cell surface and can be solubilized only by detergents or butanol. Camelysin spontaneously migrates from the surface of intact bacterial cells to preformed liposomes. The complete sequence of the camelysin-encoding gene, calY, was determined by reverse PCR on the basis of the N-terminal sequence and some internal tryptic cleavage peptides. The calY gene codes for a polypeptide of 21.569 kDa with a putative signal peptide of 27 amino acids (2.513 kDa) preceding the mature protein (19.056 kDa). Although the predicted amino acid sequence of CalY does not exhibit a typical metalloprotease consensus sequence, high-pressure liquid chromatography-purified camelysin contains one zinc ion per protein molecule. Matrix-assisted laser desorption ionization-time-of-flight mass spectrometry and tryptic peptide mass fingerprinting confirmed the identity of this zinc-binding protein as CalY. Disruption of the calY gene results in a strong decrease in the cell-bound proteolytic activity on various substrates.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Amino Acid Sequence
  • Bacillus cereus / enzymology
  • Bacillus cereus / genetics
  • Bacillus cereus / growth & development
  • Bacillus cereus / pathogenicity
  • Bacterial Proteins / chemistry
  • Bacterial Proteins / genetics
  • Bacterial Proteins / metabolism
  • Base Sequence
  • Cell Membrane / metabolism*
  • Centrifugation, Density Gradient
  • Culture Media
  • Liposomes / metabolism
  • Metalloendopeptidases / chemistry
  • Metalloendopeptidases / genetics
  • Metalloendopeptidases / metabolism*
  • Metalloproteases / chemistry
  • Metalloproteases / genetics
  • Metalloproteases / metabolism*
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Peptide Mapping
  • Sequence Analysis, DNA
  • Spectrometry, Mass, Matrix-Assisted Laser Desorption-Ionization


  • Bacterial Proteins
  • Culture Media
  • Liposomes
  • Metalloproteases
  • camelysin, Bacillus cereus
  • Metalloendopeptidases
  • camelysin

Associated data

  • GENBANK/AJ514407