Link to Pubmed [PMID] – 8195074
J. Bacteriol. 1994 Jun;176(11):3204-9
LamB is the cell surface receptor for bacteriophage lambda. LamB missense mutations yielding resistance to lambda have been previously grouped in two classes. Class I mutants block growth of lambda with wild-type host range (lambda h+) but support growth of one-step extended-host-range mutants (lambda h). Class II mutants block lambda h but support growth of two-step extended host range mutants (lambda hh*). While Class I mutations occur at 11 different amino acid sites, in five distinct portions of LamB, all the Class II mutations analyzed previously correspond to the same G-to-D change at amino acid 151. We generated by in vitro mutagenesis four different new substitutions at site 151 (to S, V, R, and C). Two of the mutants (G-151–>V [G151V] and G151R) were of Class II, while the two others (G151S and G151C) were of Class I, demonstrating that not only the site but also the nature of the substitutions at residue 151 was critical for the phage sensitivity phenotypes. The introduction of a negatively charged, a positively charged, or an aliphatic nonpolar residue at site 151 of LamB prevented both lambda h+ and lambda h adsorption, indicating that the block is not due to a charge effect. In contrast to G151D, which was sensitive to all the lambda hh* phages, G151V and G151R conferred sensitivity to only four of the five lambda hh* phages. Thus, G151V and G151R represent a new subclass of Class II LamB mutations that is more restrictive with respect to the growth of lambda hh*. Our results agree with the hypothesis that residue 151 belongs to an accessibility gate controlling the access to the phage tight-binding site and that substitutions at this residue affect the access of the phage to the binding site in relation to the size of the substitute side chain (surface area): the most restrictive changes are G151V and G151R, followed to a lesser extent by G151D and they by G151S and G151C.