Caister Academic Press

Can ABC Proteins Confer Drug Resistance in Microorganisms without Being Export Pumps?

James M. Dorrian and Ian D. Kerr
from: ABC Transporters in Microorganisms: Research, Innovation and Value as Targets against Drug Resistance (Edited by: Alicia Ponte-Sucre). Caister Academic Press, U.K. (2009)


Inhibition of bacterial protein translation is a key point of anti-microbial intervention therapy, with numerous antibiotics functioning as inhibitors of protein synthesis. The macrolide, lincosamide and streptogramin antibiotics (MLS antibiotics) all cause inhibition of protein synthesis by binding to the 50S ribosomal subunit. Resistance to this class of antibiotics is mediated by many different mechanisms, at least one of which involves an unusual class of ABC proteins. These antibiotic resistance element (ARE) type ABC proteins do not include membrane spanning segments within the polypeptide and are not linked in operons to membrane spanning regions. A straightforward transport-based explanation for the function of these ABC proteins in antibiotic resistance is therefore difficult to support. We will illustrate the diversity of these ABC proteins, discuss their clinical relevance, and illustrate three potential modes of action read more ...
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