Inhibition of Bacterial Ice Nucleators Is Not an Intrinsic Property of Antifreeze Proteins

Ralph Schwidetsky, Anna Kunert, Mischa Bonn, Ulrich Pöschl, Hans Ramløv, Arthur DeVries, Janine Fröhlich-Nowoisky, Konrad Meister*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review


Cold-adapted organisms use antifreeze proteins (AFPs) or ice-nucleating proteins (INPs) for the survival in freezing habitats. AFPs have been reported to be able to inhibit the activity of INPs, a property that would be of great physiological relevance. The generality of this effect is not understood, and for the few known examples of INP inhibition by AFPs, the molecular mechanisms remain unclear. Here, we report a comprehensive evaluation of the effects of five different AFPs on the activity of bacterial ice nucleators using a high-throughput ice nucleation assay. We find that bacterial INPs are inhibited by certain AFPs, while others show no effect. Thus, the ability to inhibit the activity of INPs is not an intrinsic property of AFPs, and the interactions of INPs and different AFPs proceed through protein-specific rather than universal molecular mechanisms.
Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Physical Chemistry Part B: Condensed Matter, Materials, Surfaces, Interfaces & Biophysical
Issue number24
Pages (from-to)4889-4895
Number of pages7
Publication statusPublished - 21 May 2020

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