Function of non-heme-binding domains of the Staphylococcus aureus IsdB protein in heme assimilation from methemoglobin
As a hemoglobin acceptor, IsdB rapidly and efficiently acquires heme from methemoglobin (metHb) in the heme acquisition pathway of Staphylococcus aureus. The pathway of heme assimilation in S. aureus involving IsdB has been established; however, the mechanism of rapid and efficient heme assimilation of metHb heme by IsdB remains unclear. IsdB consists of five major domains: the N-terminal (ND), NEAr Transporter 1 (N1), middle (MD), heme binding NEAr Transporter 2 (N2), and C-terminal (CD) domains. The goal of this study is to elucidate the roles of these IsdB domains in the metHb-to-IsdB heme transfer reaction. Deletion of the CD region does not alter the kinetics and equilibrium of the reaction. Sequential deletions of ND and N1 of ND-N1-MD-N2 progressively reduce heme transfer rates but have no effect on the reaction equilibrium. Further deletion of MD decreases the efficiency of heme transfer from metHb to N2. The MD domain reduces heme dissociation from holo-N2 and drives the metHb/N2 reaction to the formation of holo-N2. ND-N1-MD and N2 fragments, but not ND-N1, MD, and N2, reconstitute the rapid metHb/IsdB reaction, indicating an MD/N2 interaction. Analyses of MD, N2, and MD-N2 mixture by size exclusion chromatography support an interaction between MD and N2. These results indicate that ND-N1 and MD domains critically contribute to the kinetics and equilibrium of the metHb-to-IsdB heme transfer reaction, respectively. The results also suggest that CD functions as a spacer to position IsdB in the cell wall envelope for heme relay through the cell wall. These findings support a mechanism of direct extraction of metHb heme by IsdB that involves the four structural domains of IsdB.