Common themes and variations in serine protease autotransporters

YT Yen, M Kostakioti, Ian Henderson, C Stathopoulos

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

53 Citations (Scopus)


The serine protease autotransporters of the Enterobacteriaceae (SPATEs) represent a group of large-sized, multi-domain exoproteins found only in pathogenic enteric bacteria. These proteins contain a highly conserved channel-forming C-terminal domain, which functions together with YaeT/Omp85 to facilitate secretion of the passenger domain to the cell surface. The C-terminal domain also mediates autoproteolytic cleavage, which releases the passenger from the bacterial cell. The passenger folds into a characteristic parallel beta-helical stalk-like structure with an N-terminal globular domain that performs serine proteolytic activity. Here, we review and discuss recent findings that have led to a better understanding of these unique features in this virulence protein family, including their biogenesis, structural architecture, sequence variation, sub-grouping, evolution and biochemical function.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)370-379
Number of pages10
JournalTrends in Microbiology
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 1 Aug 2008


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