Robert T. Clubb, Ph.D.

Laboratory Address:
Paul Boyer Hall 620, 660

Work Address:
Paul Boyer Hall 602
Los Angeles, CA 90095

Co-Director, NMR Core (DOE)
Lab Director, Clubb Lab
Professor, Chemistry and Biochemistry, Biochemistry, Molecular Biology
Member, Biochemistry, Biophysics & Structural Biology GPB Home Area, Molecular Biology Institute
Staff, Nuclear Magnetic Resonance (NMR) Core Facility (DOE)
Researcher, Biochemistry, Biophysics and Structural Biology, Chemical Biology
Research Interests
My laboratory studies how bacteria display and utilize virulence factors during infections. Our primary research tool is multi-dimensional heteronuclear nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy, which is used to investigate the structure and dynamics of proteins and their complexes in solution. We also employ a wide range of other techniques in our research, including X-ray crystallography, and cellular and biochemical methods. Three related research projects are ongoing. (1) We are studying sortase enzymes that are used by gram-positive bacteria to attach proteins to their cell wall and to assemble pili. We are also developing sortase inhibitors that could function as potent anti-infective agents. (2) We are investigating how the pathogen Staphylococcus aureus captures heme-iron from human hemoglobin. As this source of iron is preferentially used by S. aureus during infections this work may facilitate the development of new anti-infective agents that inhibit microbial heme acquisition. (3) We are using sortase enzyme technology to engineer microbial surfaces. Our objective is to create industrially useful microbes for biofuel production. A more detailed description of these projects can be found at our website:

Dr. Clubb received his B.S. at the University of Wisconsin and his Ph.D. from the University of Michigan.

Suree Nuttee, Yi Sung Wook, Thieu William, Marohn Melanie, Damoiseaux Robert, Chan Albert, Jung Michael E, Clubb Robert T Discovery and structure-activity relationship analysis of Staphylococcus aureus sortase A inhibitors. Bioorganic & medicinal chemistry. 2009; 17(20): 7174-85.
Suree Nuttee, Liew Chu Kong, Villareal Valerie A, Thieu William, Fadeev Evgeny A, Clemens Jeremy J, Jung Michael E, Clubb Robert T The structure of the Staphylococcus aureus sortase-substrate complex reveals how the universally conserved LPXTG sorting signal is recognized. The Journal of biological chemistry. 2009; 284(36): 24465-77.
Fadeev Evgeny A, Sam My D, Clubb Robert T NMR structure of the amino-terminal domain of the lambda integrase protein in complex with DNA: immobilization of a flexible tail facilitates beta-sheet recognition of the major groove. Journal of molecular biology. 2009; 388(4): 682-90.
Wilkinson Thomas A, Januszyk Kurt, Phillips Martin L, Tekeste Shewit S, Zhang Min, Miller Jennifer T, Le Grice Stuart F J, Clubb Robert T, Chow Samson A Identifying and characterizing a functional HIV-1 reverse transcriptase-binding site on integrase. The Journal of biological chemistry. 2009; 284(12): 7931-9.
Pilpa Robert T, Robson Robert T, Villareal Robert T, Wong Robert T, Phillips Robert T, Clubb Robert T Functionally distinct NEAT (NEAr transporter) domains within the staphylococcus aureus IsdH/HarA protein extract heme from methemoglobin. The Journal of biological chemistry. 2008; 283(46): .
Villareal Valerie A, Pilpa Rosemarie M, Robson Scott A, Fadeev Evgeny A, Clubb Robert T The IsdC Protein from Staphylococcus aureus Uses a Flexible Binding Pocket to Capture Heme. The Journal of biological chemistry. 2008; 283(46): 31591-600.
Suree N, Jung ME, Clubb RT. Recent advances towards new anti-infective agents that inhibit cell surface protein anchoring in Staphylococcus aureus and other gram-positive pathogens. Mini Rev Med Chem 2007; (7): 991-1000.
Yeates Todd O, Clubb Robert T Biochemistry. How some pili pull. Science (New York, N.Y.). 2007; 318(5856): 1558-9.
Januszyk Kurt, Li Patrick Wai-Lun, Villareal Valerie, Branciforte Dan, Wu Haihong, Xie Yongming, Feigon Juli, Loo Joseph A, Martin Sandra L, Clubb Robert T Identification and solution structure of a highly conserved C-terminal domain within ORF1p required for retrotransposition of long interspersed nuclear element-1. The Journal of biological chemistry. 2007; 282(34): 24893-904.
Abbani Mohamad A, Papagiannis Christie V, Sam My D, Cascio Duilio, Johnson Reid C, Clubb Robert T Structure of the cooperative Xis-DNA complex reveals a micronucleoprotein filament that regulates phage lambda intasome assembly. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America. 2007; 104(7): 2109-14.
Papagiannis Christie V, Sam My D, Abbani Mohamad A, Yoo Daniel, Cascio Duilio, Clubb Robert T, Johnson Reid C Fis targets assembly of the Xis nucleoprotein filament to promote excisive recombination by phage lambda. Journal of molecular biology. 2007; 367(2): 328-43.
Spirig Thomas, Weiner Ethan M, Clubb Robert T Sortase enzymes in Gram-positive bacteria. Molecular microbiology. 2011; 82(5): 1044-59.
Kappel Kalli, Wereszczynski Jeff, Clubb Robert T, McCammon J Andrew The binding mechanism, multiple binding modes, and allosteric regulation of Staphylococcus aureus Sortase A probed by molecular dynamics simulations. Protein science : a publication of the Protein Society. 2012; 21(12): 1858-71.
Villareal Valerie A, Spirig Thomas, Robson Scott A, Liu Mengyao, Lei Benfang, Clubb Robert T Transient weak protein-protein complexes transfer heme across the cell wall of Staphylococcus aureus. Journal of the American Chemical Society. 2011; 133(36): 14176-9.
Robson Scott A, Jacobitz Alex W, Phillips Martin L, Clubb Robert T Solution structure of the sortase required for efficient production of infectious Bacillus anthracis spores. Biochemistry. 2012; 51(40): 7953-63.
Sam My D, Abbani Mohamad A, Cascio Duilio, Johnson Reid C, Clubb Robert T Crystallization, dehydration and preliminary X-ray analysis of excisionase (Xis) proteins cooperatively bound to DNA. Acta crystallographica. Section F, Structural biology and crystallization communications. 2006; 62(Pt 8): 825-8.
Anderson Timothy D, Robson Scott A, Jiang Xiao Wen, Malmirchegini G Reza, Fierobe Henri-Pierre, Lazazzera Beth A, Clubb Robert T Assembly of minicellulosomes on the surface of Bacillus subtilis. Applied and environmental microbiology. 2011; 77(14): 4849-58.
Spirig Thomas, Clubb Robert T Backbone 1H, 13C and 15N resonance assignments of the 39 kDa staphylococcal hemoglobin receptor IsdH. Biomolecular NMR assignments. 2012; 6(2): 169-72.
Anderson Timothy D, Miller J Izaak, Fierobe Henri-Pierre, Clubb Robert T Recombinant Bacillus subtilis that grows on untreated plant biomass. Applied and environmental microbiology. 2013; 79(3): 867-76.
Januszyk Kurt, Fleissner Mark R, Atchabahian Lara, Shieh Fa-Kuen, Altenbach Christian, Martin Sandra L, Guo Feng, Hubbell Wayne L, Clubb Robert T Site-directed spin labeling electron paramagnetic resonance study of the ORF1 protein from a mouse L1 retrotransposon. Protein science : a publication of the Protein Society. 2011; 20(7): 1231-43.
Spirig Thomas, Malmirchegini G Reza, Zhang Jiang, Robson Scott A, Sjodt Megan, Liu Mengyao, Krishna Kumar Kaavya, Dickson Claire F, Gell David A, Lei Benfang, Loo Joseph A, Clubb Robert T Staphylococcus aureus uses a novel multidomain receptor to break apart human hemoglobin and steal its heme. The Journal of biological chemistry. 2013; 288(2): 1065-78.