The GAP portion of pseudomonas aeruginosa type III secreted toxin ExoS upregulates total and surface levels of wild type CFTR

Deepali N. Tukaye, Sang Ho Kwon, Wiliam B. Guggino

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

1 Scopus citations


Background: Pseudomonas aeruginosa (PA) infections account for a large percentage of fatal hospital acquired pneumonias. One of the PA Type III secreted toxin (TTST) ExoS, a bifunctional protein with N-terminal GTPase activating protein (GAP) and C-terminal ADP rybosyl transferase (ADPRT) activities, significantly contributes to PA virulence by targeting small molecular weight G-proteins (SMWGP). In this study, we have looked at one of the mechanisms by which the GAP portion of ExoS (ExoS-GAP) mediates cellular toxicity. Methods: The effects of ExoS-GAP on CFTR trafficking were studied in CFBE41o- Kir 2.2 and MDCK cell lines stably expressing CFTR using a transient transfection system. Results: Transient transfection of ExoS-GAP increased the total and surface protein levels of mature wild type CFTR in epithelial cells stably expressing wild type (WT) CFTR. The effect of ExoS-GAP was specific to CFTR in bronchial epithelial cells since it did not affect the total protein levels of Na + /K + ATPase, another membrane protein. A point mutation in the ExoS GAP domain (R146K), known to disrupt its catalytic GAP activity, abolished the effect of ExoS-GAP on WT CFTR. Lysosomal inhibition studies with Bafilomycin A1 indicate that ExoS-GAP decreased lysosomal degradation of the mature WT CFTR with concomitant increase in the total levels of mature WT CFTR. However, ExoS-GAP did not increase the total protein levels of F508CFTR. Conclusion: The GAP portion of the PA TTST ExoS increases the total and surface levels of wild type CFTR in vitro mammalian cell system. The effect of ExoS-GAP on WT CFTR total protein levels provides new insight into understanding the virulent pathophysiology of PA infections.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)153-165
Number of pages13
JournalCellular Physiology and Biochemistry
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1 2013
Externally publishedYes



  • CFTR
  • ExoS-GAP
  • Pseudomonas aueroginosa

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology

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