SpvC is a Salmonella effector with phosphothreonine lyase activity on host mitogen-activated protein kinases

Mol Microbiol. 2008 Mar;67(6):1371-83. doi: 10.1111/j.1365-2958.2008.06134.x. Epub 2008 Feb 15.


SpvC is encoded by the Salmonella virulence plasmid. We have investigated the biochemical function of SpvC and the mechanism by which it is secreted by bacteria and translocated into infected macrophages. We constructed a strain carrying a deletion in spvC and showed that the strain is attenuated for systemic virulence in mice. SpvC can be secreted in vitro by either the SPI-1 or SPI-2 type III secretion systems. Cell biological and genetic experiments showed that translocation of the protein into the cytosol of macrophages by intracellular bacteria is dependent on the SPI-2 T3SS. Using antibodies specific to phospho-amino acids and mass spectrometry we demonstrate that SpvC has phosphothreonine lyase activity on full-length phospho-Erk (pErk) and a synthetic 13-amino-acid phospho-peptide containing the TXY motif. A Salmonella strain expressing spvC from a plasmid downregulated cytokine release from infected cells.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Amino Acid Motifs
  • Animals
  • Carbon-Oxygen Lyases / chemistry
  • Carbon-Oxygen Lyases / genetics
  • Carbon-Oxygen Lyases / metabolism*
  • Cells, Cultured
  • Cytokines / blood
  • Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assay
  • Extracellular Signal-Regulated MAP Kinases / metabolism
  • Female
  • HeLa Cells
  • Humans
  • JNK Mitogen-Activated Protein Kinases / metabolism
  • Macrophages / enzymology
  • Macrophages / microbiology
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred BALB C
  • Mitogen-Activated Protein Kinases / metabolism*
  • Phosphorylation
  • Phosphothreonine / metabolism
  • Salmonella Infections / blood
  • Salmonella Infections / enzymology*
  • Salmonella Infections / microbiology
  • Salmonella typhimurium / genetics
  • Salmonella typhimurium / metabolism*
  • Salmonella typhimurium / pathogenicity
  • Spectrometry, Mass, Electrospray Ionization
  • Spectrometry, Mass, Matrix-Assisted Laser Desorption-Ionization
  • Virulence / genetics
  • p38 Mitogen-Activated Protein Kinases / metabolism


  • Cytokines
  • Phosphothreonine
  • Extracellular Signal-Regulated MAP Kinases
  • JNK Mitogen-Activated Protein Kinases
  • Mitogen-Activated Protein Kinases
  • p38 Mitogen-Activated Protein Kinases
  • Carbon-Oxygen Lyases
  • phosphothreonine lyase, Salmonella enterica