The heavy chains of both botulinum neurotoxin type B and tetanus toxin form channels in planar bilayer membranes. These channels have pH-dependent and voltage-dependent properties that are remarkably similar to those previously described for diphtheria toxin. Selectivity experiments with anions and cations show that the channels formed by the heavy chains of all three toxins are large; thus, these channels could serve as 'tunnel proteins' for translocation of active peptide fragments. These findings support the hypothesis that the active fragments of botulinum neurotoxin and tetanus toxin, like that of diphtheria toxin, are translocated across the membranes of acidic vesicles.
|Number of pages
|Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
|Published - 1985
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