Human C4b-binding protein, structural basis for interaction with streptococcal M protein, a major bacterial virulence factor

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Human C4b-binding protein (C4BP) protects host tissue, and those pathogens able to hijack this plasma glycoprotein, from complement-mediated destruction. We now show that the first two complement control protein (CCP) modules of the C4BP alpha-chain, plus the four residues connecting them, are necessary and sufficient for binding a bacterial virulence factor, the Streptococcus pyogenes M4 (Arp4) protein. Structure determination by NMR reveals two tightly coupled CCP modules in an elongated arrangement within this region of C4BP. Chemical shift perturbation studies demonstrate that the N-terminal, hypervariable region of M4 binds to a site including strand 1 of CCP module 2. This interaction is accompanied by an intermodular reorientation within C4BP. We thus provide a detailed picture of an interaction whereby a pathogen evades complement.


Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Medicinal Chemistry
  • Microbiology in the medical area
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3690-3697
JournalJournal of Biological Chemistry
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 2006
Publication categoryResearch