Lipoprotein biogenesis in Gram-positive bacteria: knowing when to hold 'em, knowing when to fold 'em

Trends Microbiol. 2009 Jan;17(1):13-21. doi: 10.1016/j.tim.2008.10.001. Epub 2008 Dec 6.


Gram-positive bacterial lipoproteins are a functionally diverse and important class of peripheral membrane proteins. Recent advances in molecular biology and the availability of whole genome sequence data have overturned many long-held assumptions about the export and processing of these proteins, most notably the recent discovery that not all lipoproteins are exported as unfolded substrates through the general secretion pathway. Here, we review recent discoveries concerning the export and processing of these proteins, their role in virulence in Gram-positive bacteria and their potential as vaccine candidates or targets for new antimicrobials.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Bacterial Proteins* / biosynthesis
  • Bacterial Proteins* / chemistry
  • Bacterial Proteins* / genetics
  • Bacterial Proteins* / metabolism
  • Gene Expression Regulation, Bacterial*
  • Gram-Positive Bacteria / metabolism*
  • Gram-Positive Bacteria / pathogenicity
  • Gram-Positive Bacterial Infections / microbiology
  • Humans
  • Lipoproteins* / biosynthesis
  • Lipoproteins* / chemistry
  • Lipoproteins* / genetics
  • Lipoproteins* / metabolism
  • Mice
  • Protein Folding*
  • Protein Transport
  • Virulence


  • Bacterial Proteins
  • Lipoproteins