|| Checking for direct PDF access through Ovid
Lysozymes are widely distributed immune effectors exerting muramidase activity against the peptidoglycan of the bacterial cell wall to trigger cell lysis. However, some invertebrate-type (i-type) lysozymes deficient of muramidase activity still exhibit antimicrobial activity. To date, the mechanism underlying the antimicrobial effect of muramidase-deficient i-type lysozymes remains unclear. Accordingly, this study characterized a novel i-type lysozyme, Splys-i, in the mud crab Scylla paramamosain. Splys-i shared the highest identity with the Litopenaeus vannamei i-type lysozyme (Lvlys-i2, 54% identity) at the amino acid level. Alignment analysis and 3D structure comparison show that Splys-i may be a muramidase-deficient i-type lysozyme because it lacks the two conserved catalytic residues (Glu and Asp) that are necessary for muramidase activity. Splys-i is mainly distributed in the intestine, stomach, gills, hepatopancreas, and hemocytes, and it is upregulated by Vibrio harveyi or Staphylococcus aureus challenge. Recombinant Splys-i protein (rSplys-i) can inhibit the growth of Gram-negative bacteria (V. harveyi, Vibrio alginolyticus, Vibrio parahemolyticus, and Escherichia coli), Gram-positive bacteria (S. aureus, Bacillus subtilis, and Bacillus megaterium), and the fungus Candida albicans to varying degrees. In this study, two binding assays and a bacterial agglutination assay were conducted to elucidate the potential antimicrobial mechanisms of Splys-i. Results demonstrated that rSplys-i could bind to all nine aforementioned microorganisms. It also exhibited a strong binding activity to lipopolysaccharide from E. coli and lipoteichoic acid and peptidoglycan (PGN) from S. aureus but a weak binding activity to PGN from B. subtilis and β-glucan from fungi. Moreover, rSplys-i could agglutinate these nine types of microorganisms in the presence of Ca2+ at different protein concentrations. These results suggest that the binding activity and its triggered agglutinating activity might be two major mechanisms of action to realize the muramidase-deficient antibacterial activity. In addition, rSplys-i can hydrolyze the peptidoglycan of some Gram-positive bacteria because it exhibits weak isopeptidase activities in salt and protein concentration-dependent manner. This result indicates that such an isopeptidase activity may contribute to the muramidase-deficient antimicrobial activity to a certain degree. In conclusion, Splys-i is upregulated by pathogenic bacteria, and it inhibits bacterial growth by binding and agglutination activities as well as isopeptidase activity, suggesting that Splys-i is involved in immune defense against bacteria through several different mechanisms of action.Splys-i is a muramidase-deficient i-type lysozyme with antimicrobial activity.Splys-i possesses binding activity to microbes and their specific polysaccharides.Splys-i can agglutinate nine different types of bacteria and fungi.Splys-i exhibits isopeptidase activity in salt and protein concentration-dependent way.Agglutination and isopeptidase activity contribute to Splys-i antimicrobial activity.