Molecular characterization of an operon required for pertussis toxin secretion

Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 1993 Apr 1;90(7):2970-4. doi: 10.1073/pnas.90.7.2970.


Mutants of Bordetella pertussis which are defective in secretion of pertussis toxin were isolated and characterized. The region of the B. pertussis chromosome identified by mutagenesis as playing a role in transport of pertussis toxin was sequenced. Analysis of this region revealed eight open reading frames, seven of which predict a protein exhibiting homology with one of the VirB proteins of Agrobacterium tumefaciens, which are involved in the transport of the T-DNA molecule across bacterial and plant membranes. Thus a set of accessory proteins are most likely involved in the secretion of pertussis toxin, and these proteins appear to be members of a family of proteins involved in the secretion of macromolecules from bacteria.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Agrobacterium tumefaciens / genetics
  • Amino Acid Sequence
  • Bacterial Proteins / genetics
  • Base Sequence
  • Bordetella pertussis / genetics*
  • Chromosomes, Bacterial*
  • DNA, Bacterial / metabolism
  • Kinetics
  • Macromolecular Substances
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Mutagenesis
  • Open Reading Frames
  • Operon*
  • Pertussis Toxin*
  • Phenotype
  • Sequence Homology, Amino Acid
  • Virulence Factors*
  • Virulence Factors, Bordetella / analysis
  • Virulence Factors, Bordetella / biosynthesis
  • Virulence Factors, Bordetella / genetics*


  • Bacterial Proteins
  • DNA, Bacterial
  • Macromolecular Substances
  • T-DNA
  • Virulence Factors
  • Virulence Factors, Bordetella
  • Pertussis Toxin

Associated data

  • GENBANK/L10720