The present study was undertaken to examine the extent to which the lgt locus varies among strains of gonococci. This locus encodes five glycosyl transferases involved in the synthesis of the lipooligosaccharide (LOS) of Neisseria gonorrhoeae. We examined seven gonococcal strains and found that the structure of the lgt locus is conserved among six of these strains. The locus is strikingly altered in strain 15253. This is one of the few strains where extensive structural analysis of its LOS is available, and therefore, we defined the altered lgt locus and focused on the reactivity of mAB 2C7. We found that strain 15253 contains only two lgt genes, lgtA and lgtE. As in F62, lgtA encodes a GlcNAc transferase and is subject to phase variation. In addition, by analysis of deletion mutants, we found that lgtE, which encodes a galactosyl transferase that is required for elongating the alpha-chain, is also necessary for completing the beta chain.

This content is only available as a PDF.