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Research article1998Peer reviewedOpen access

A fibrinogen-binding protein of Staphylococcus epidermidis

Nilsson, M; Frykberg, L; Flock, JI; Pei, L; Lindberg, M; Guss, B


The present study reports on fibrinogen (Fg) binding of Staphylococcus epidermidis, Adhesion of different S. epidermidis strains to immobilized Fg was found to vary significantly between different strains, and the component responsible was found to be proteinaceous in nature. To further characterize the Fg-binding activity, a shotgun phage display library covering the S. epidermidis chromosome was constructed. By affinity selection (panning) against immobilized Fg, a phagemid clone, pSEFG1, was isolated, which harbors an insert with an open reading frame of similar to 1.7 kilobases. Results from binding and inhibition experiments demonstrated that the insert of pSEFG1 encodes a specific Fg-binding protein. Furthermore, affinity-purified protein encoded by pSEFG1 completely inhibited adhesion of S. epidermidis to immobilized Fg. By additional cloning and DNA sequence analyses, the complete gene, termed fbe, was found to consist of an open reading frame of 3,276 nucleotides encoding a protein, called Fbe, with a deduced molecular mass of similar to 119 kDa. With a second phage display library made from another clinical isolate of S. epidermidis, it was possible to localize the Fg-binding region to a 331-amino-acid-long fragment. PCR analysis showed that the fbe gene was found in 40 of 43 clinical isolates of S. epidermidis. The overall organization of Fbe resembles those of other extracellular surface proteins of staphylococci and streptococci. Sequence comparisons with earlier known proteins revealed that this protein is related to an Fg-binding protein of Staphylococcus aureus called clumping factor.

Published in

Infection and Immunity
1998, Volume: 66, number: 6, pages: 2666-2673