Membrane proteins represent a significant proportion of total bacterial proteins and perform vital cellular functions ranging from exchanging metabolites and genetic material, secretion and sorting, sensing signal molecules, and cell division. Many of these functions are carried out at distinct foci on the bacterial membrane, and this subcellular localization can be coordinated by a number of factors, including lipid microdomains, protein-protein interactions, and membrane curvature. Elucidating the mechanisms behind focal protein localization in bacteria informs not only protein structure-function correlation, but also how to disrupt the protein function to limit virulence. Here we review recent advances describing a functional role for subcellular localization of membrane proteins involved in genetic transfer, secretion and sorting, cell division and growth, and signaling.
Keywords: Gram-positive; focal localization; membrane protein.
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