Effects of Ice Nucleation Protein Repeat Number and Oligomerization Level on Ice Nucleation Activity

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DOI

  • M. L. Ling
  • ,
  • H. Wex, Leibniz Inst Tropospher Res
  • ,
  • S. Grawe, Leibniz Inst Tropospher Res
  • ,
  • J. Jakobsson, Lund Univ, Dept Design Sci
  • ,
  • J. Londahl, Lund Univ, Dept Design Sci
  • ,
  • S. Hartmann, Leibniz Inst Tropospher Res
  • ,
  • K. Finster
  • T. Boesen
  • T. Santl-Temkiv

Ice nucleation active bacteria have attracted particular attention due to their unique ability to produce specific ice nucleation proteins (INpros), which are the most efficient ice nuclei known as they induce nucleation at temperatures close to 0 degrees C. Our model bacterium Pseudomonas syringae strain R10.79 produced INpros containing 67 tandem repeats, forming the proposed ice-binding surface. To understand the role of the INpro repeats as well as the role of intermolecular interactions between INpros for their ice nucleation behavior, we produced a truncated version of the protein with only 16 tandem repeats (INpro(16R)). The purified INpro(16R) produced oligomers of varying sizes. Immersion freezing ice nucleation behavior of purified INpro(16R) was characterized by droplet-freezing assays and in the Leipzig Aerosol Cloud Interaction Simulator. Predominant INpro(16R) oligomers introduced into Leipzig Aerosol Cloud Interaction Simulator as single particles with diameters of 50nm or 70nm were ice nucleation active at temperatures of -26 degrees C and -24 degrees C, respectively. These are much lower temperatures compared to that of intact INpros (-12 degrees C). The data clearly indicated that the number of repeats determines the ice nucleation temperature. In addition, ice nucleation between -9 degrees C and -10 degrees C, comparable to the activity of intact INpro, was caused by higher-order INpro(16R) oligomers. This supported previous observations that INpro oligomerization increases the ice-binding surface, thereby affecting ice nucleation activity. In conclusion, both repeat number and oligomerization contribute in a seemingly independent manner to the nucleation mechanism of INpros.

Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Geophysical Research
Volume123
Issue3
Pages (from-to)1802-1810
Number of pages9
ISSN0148-0227
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 16 Feb 2018

    Research areas

  • precipitation, bioaerosols, PSEUDOMONAS-SYRINGAE, BACTERIA, PRECIPITATION, NUCLEI, PLANTS, IMPACT, MODEL

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