A new gene, designated scaC and encoding a protein carrying a single cohesin, was identified in the cellulolytic rumen anaerobe Ruminococcus flavefaciens 17 as part of a gene cluster that also codes for the cellulosome structural components ScaA and ScaB. Phylogenetic analysis showed that the sequence of the ScaC cohesin is distinct from the sequences of other cohesins, including the sequences of R. flavefaciens ScaA and ScaB. The scaC gene product also includes at its C terminus a dockerin module that closely resembles those found in R. flavefaciens enzymes that bind to the cohesins of the primary ScaA scaffoldin. The putative cohesin domain and the C-terminal dockerin module were cloned and overexpressed in Escherichia coli as His(6)-tagged products (ScaC-Coh and ScaC-Doc, respectively). Affinity probing of protein extracts of R. flavefaciens 17 separated in one-dimensional and two-dimensional gels with recombinant cohesins from ScaC and ScaA revealed that two distinct subsets of native proteins interact with ScaC-Coh and ScaA-Coh. Furthermore, ScaC-Coh failed to interact with the recombinant dockerin module from the enzyme EndB that is recognized by ScaA cohesins. On the other hand, ScaC-Doc was shown to interact specifically with the recombinant cohesin domain from ScaA, and the ScaA-Coh probe was shown to interact with a native 29-kDa protein spot identified as ScaC by matrix-assisted laser desorption ionization-time of flight mass spectrometry. These results suggest that ScaC plays the role of an adaptor scaffoldin that is bound to ScaA via the ScaC dockerin module, which, via the distinctive ScaC cohesin, expands the range of proteins that can bind to the ScaA-based enzyme complex.
- layer homology domains