Desulfovibrio vulgaris Hildenborough has a membrane-bound [NiFeSe] hydrogenase whose mode of membrane association was unknown since it is constituted by two hydrophilic subunits. This work shows that this hydrogenase is a bacterial lipoprotein bound to the membrane by lipidic groups found at the N-terminus of the large subunit, which is unusual since it is missing the typical lipoprotein signal peptide. Nevertheless, the large subunit has a conserved four residue lipobox and its synthesis is sensitive to the signal peptidase II inhibitor globomycin. The D. vulgaris [NiFeSe] hydrogenase is the first example of a bacterial lipoprotein translocated through the Tat pathway.
- Signal peptidase II
- Tat pathway