Hyper-Responsive Chemiluminescent Probe Reveals Distinct PYRase Activity in Pseudomonas aeruginosa

Rozan Tannous, Omri Shelef, Tal Kopp, Micha Fridman, Doron Shabat*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Pyrrolidone carboxyl peptidase, commonly known as PYRase, is an exopeptidase that catalytically cleaves an N-terminal pyroglutamic acid from peptides or proteins. The diverse functions of PYRases in bacterial enzymology have prompted the development of various bacterial diagnostic techniques. However, the specific physiological role and activity of this enzyme across the bacterial kingdom remain unclear. Here, we present a functional phenoxy-1,2-dioxetane chemiluminescent probe (PyrCL) that can selectively detect PYRase activity in both Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria. The probe activation mechanism is based on the cleavage of a pyroglutamyl substrate, followed by a release of the phenoxy-dioxetane luminophore, which then undergoes efficient chemiexcitation to emit a green photon. Probe PyrCL exhibits an effective turn-on response with superior detection capability in terms of response time and sensitivity compared to existing fluorescence probes. The superior detection sensitivity of the chemiluminescent probe enables us to reveal previously undetected PYRase activity in Streptococcus mutans. Furthermore, it enables the discrimination of Pseudomonas aeruginosa from other Gram-negative bacteria in the tested panel, based on their distinct PYRase activity. We expect that probe PyrCL will have great value for PYRase-based bacteria diagnosis with use in basic research and clinical applications.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)472-479
Number of pages8
JournalBioconjugate Chemistry
Issue number4
StatePublished - 17 Apr 2024


FundersFunder number
Ministry of Science and Technology, Israel
Israel Academy of Sciences and Humanities


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