Revisiting the mechanism of macrolide-antibiotic resistance mediated by ribosomal protein L22
Bacterial antibiotic resistance can occur by many mechanisms. An intriguing class of mutants is resistant to macrolide antibiotics even though these drugs still bind to their targets. For example, a 3-residue deletion (Delta MKR) in ribosomal protein L22 distorts a loop that forms a constriction in the ribosome exit tunnel, apparently allowing nascent-chain egress and translation in the presence of bound macrolides. Here, however, we demonstrate that Delta MKR and wild-type ribosomes show comparable macrolide sensitivity in vitro. In Escherichia coli, we find that this mutation reduces antibiotic occupancy of the target site on ribosomes in a manner largely dependent on the AcrAB-TolC efflux system. We propose a model for antibiotic resistance in which Delta MKR ribosomes alter the translation of specific proteins, possibly via changes in programmed stalling, and modify the cell envelope in a manner that lowers steady-state macrolide levels.
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
"Revisiting the mechanism of macrolide-antibiotic resistance mediated by ribosomal protein L22" (2008). Faculty Bibliography 2000s. 741.