Scientific reports 2016 Nov 176() 37339 doi 10.1038/srep37339
To characterize the interaction potential of the human vaginal isolate Lactobacillus plantarum CMPG5300, its genome was mined for genes encoding lectin-like proteins. cmpg5300.05_29 was identified as the gene encoding a putative mannose-binding lectin. Phenotypic analysis of a gene knock-out mutant of cmpg5300.05_29 showed that expression of this gene is important for auto-aggregation, adhesion to the vaginal epithelial cells, biofilm formation and binding to mannosylated glycans. Purification of the predicted lectin domain of Cmpg5300.05_29 and characterization of its sugar binding capacity confirmed the specificity of the lectin for high- mannose glycans. Therefore, we renamed Cmpg5300.05_29 as a mannose-specific lectin (Msl). The purified lectin domain of Msl could efficiently bind to HIV-1 glycoprotein gp120 and Candida albicans, and showed an inhibitory activity against biofilm formation of uropathogenic Escherichia coli, Staphylococcus aureus and Salmonella Typhimurium. Thus, using a combination of molecular lectin characterization and functional assays, we could show that lectin-sugar interactions play a key role in host and pathogen interactions of a prototype isolate of the vaginal Lactobacillus microbiota.