The halophilic methanoarchaeon Methanohalophilus portucalensis can synthesize the osmolyte betaine de novo in response to extracellular salt stress. Betaine is generated by the stepwise methylation of glycine to form sarcosine, N, N-dimethylglycine and betaine by using S-adenosyl-L-methionine (AdoMet) as the methyl donor. The complete gene cluster of Mpgsmt-sdmt was cloned from Southern hybridization and heterologous expressed in E. coli respectively. The recombinant MpGSMT and MpSDMT both retained their in vivo functional activities in E. coli BL21(DE3)RIL to synthesize and accumulate betaine and conferred elevated survival ability in betaine transport deficient mutant E. coli MKH13 under high salt stress. The dramatic activating effects of sodium and potassium ions on the in vitro methyltransferase activities of MpGSMT, but not MpSDMT or bacterial GSMT and SDMT, revealed that GSMT from halophilic methanoarchaeon possesses novel regulate mechanism in betaine biosynthesis pathway. The circular dichroism spectra showed the fluctuated peaks at 206 nm were detected in the MpGSMT under various concentrations of potassium or sodium ions. This fluctuated difference may cause by a change in the β-turn structure located at the conserved glycine- and sarcosine-binding residue Arg167 of MpGSMT. The analytical ultracentrifugation analysis indicated that the monomer MpGSMT switched to dimeric form increased from 7.6% to 70% with KCl concentration increased from 0 to 2.0 M. The level of potassium and sodium ions may modulate the substrate binding activity of MpGSMT through the conformational change. Additionally, MpGSMT showed a strong end product, betaine, inhibitory effect and was more sensitive to the inhibitor AdoHcy. The above results indicated that the first enzymatic step involved in synthesizing the osmolyte betaine in halophilic archaea, namely, GSMT, may also play a major role in coupling the salt-in and compatible solute (osmolyte) osmoadaptative strategies in halophilic methanogens for adapting to high salt environments.
An enzyme with sarcosine dimethylglycine methyltransferase activity has been identified in the thermophilic eukaryote, Galdieria sulphuraria. The crystal structure of the enzyme, solved to a resolution of 1.95 Å, revealed a fold highly similar to that of mycolic acid synthases. The kcat and apparent KM values were 64.3 min-1 and 2.0 mM for sarcosine and 85.6 min-1 and 2.8 mM for dimethylglycine. Apparent KM values for S-adenosylmethionine were 144 and 150 μM for sarcosine and dimethylglycine respectively, and the enzyme melting temperature was 61.1 °C. Modeling of cofactor binding in the active site based on the structure of methoxy mycolic acid synthase 2 revealed a number of conserved interactions within the active site.
Betaine synthesis; structural genomics; thermophile; osmoregulation
The halophilic methanoarchaeon Methanohalophilus portucalensis can synthesize de novo and accumulate β-glutamine, Nɛ-acetyl-β-lysine, and glycine betaine (betaine) as compatible solutes (osmolytes) when grown at elevated salt concentrations. Both in vivo and in vitro betaine formation assays in this study confirmed previous nuclear magnetic resonance 13C-labelling studies showing that the de novo synthesis of betaine proceeded from glycine, sarcosine, and dimethylglycine to form betaine through threefold methylation. Exogenous sarcosine (1 mM) effectively suppressed the intracellular accumulation of betaine, and a higher level of sarcosine accumulation was accompanied by a lower level of betaine synthesis. Exogenous dimethylglycine has an effect similar to that of betaine addition, which increased the intracellular pool of betaine and suppressed the levels of Nɛ-acetyl-β-lysine and β-glutamine. Both in vivo and in vitro betaine formation assays with glycine as the substrate showed only sarcosine and betaine, but no dimethylglycine. Dimethylglycine was detected only when it was added as a substrate in in vitro assays. A high level of potassium (400 mM and above) was necessary for betaine formation in vitro. Interestingly, no methylamines were detected without the addition of KCl. Also, high levels of NaCl and LiCl (800 mM) favored sarcosine accumulation, while a lower level (400 mM) favored betaine synthesis. The above observations indicate that a high sarcosine level suppressed multiple methylation while dimethylglycine was rapidly converted to betaine. Also, high levels of potassium led to greater amounts of betaine, while lower levels of potassium led to greater amounts of sarcosine. This finding suggests that the intracellular levels of both sarcosine and potassium are associated with the regulation of betaine synthesis in M. portucalensis.
The stabilizing osmolyte trimethylamine N-oxide (TMAO) is shown to be an efficient primary precipitant for protein crystal growth. In addition to TMAO, two other methylamine osmolytes, sarcosine and betaine, are shown to be effective cryoprotective agents for protein crystal cooling.
Both crystallization and cryoprotection are often bottlenecks for high-resolution X-ray structure determination of macromolecules. Methylamine osmolytes are known stabilizers of protein structure. One such osmolyte, trimethylamine N-oxide (TMAO), has seen occasional use as an additive to improve macromolecular crystal quality and has recently been shown to be an effective cryoprotective agent for low-temperature data collection. Here, TMAO and the related osmolytes sarcosine and betaine are investigated as primary precipitating agents for protein crystal growth. Crystallization experiments were undertaken with 14 proteins. Using TMAO, seven proteins crystallized in a total of 13 crystal forms, including a new tetragonal crystal form of trypsin. The crystals diffracted well, and eight of the 13 crystal forms could be effectively cryocooled as grown with TMAO as an in situ cryoprotective agent. Sarcosine and betaine produced crystals of four and two of the 14 proteins, respectively. In addition to TMAO, sarcosine and betaine were effective post-crystallization cryoprotective agents for two different crystal forms of thermolysin. Precipitation reactions of TMAO with several transition-metal ions (Fe3+, Co2+, Cu2+ and Zn2+) did not occur with sarcosine or betaine and were inhibited for TMAO at lower pH. Structures of proteins from TMAO-grown crystals and from crystals soaked in TMAO, sarcosine or betaine were determined, showing osmolyte binding in five of the 12 crystals tested. When an osmolyte was shown to bind, it did so near the protein surface, interacting with water molecules, side chains and backbone atoms, often at crystal contacts.
crystallization; cryoprotection; osmolytes; trimethylamine N-oxide; sarcosine; betaine
Glycine betaine is accumulated in cells living in high salt concentrations to balance the osmotic pressure. Glycine sarcosine N-methyltransferase (GSMT) and sarcosine dimethylglycine N-methyltransferase (SDMT) of Ectothiorhodospira halochloris catalyze the threefold methylation of glycine to betaine, with S-adenosylmethionine acting as the methyl group donor. These methyltransferases were expressed in Escherichia coli and purified, and some of their enzymatic properties were characterized. Both enzymes had high substrate specificities and pH optima near the physiological pH. No evidence of cofactors was found. The enzymes showed Michaelis-Menten kinetics for their substrates. The apparent Km and Vmax values were determined for all substrates when the other substrate was present in saturating concentrations. Both enzymes were strongly inhibited by the reaction product S-adenosylhomocysteine. Betaine inhibited the methylation reactions only at high concentrations.
Heterotetrameric sarcosine oxidase (TSOX) is a complex bifunctional enzyme that catalyzes the oxidation of the methyl group in sarcosine (N-methylglycine) and transfer of the oxidized methyl group into the 1-carbon metabolic pool. In addition to four different subunits, TSOX contains three coenzymes (FAD, FMN, NAD) and a binding site for tetrahydrofolate, the coenzyme acceptor of the oxidized methyl group from sarcosine. Based on preliminary success in crystallization of the natural enzyme, the genes encoding the subunits for TSOX from Pseudomonas maltophila (pTSOX) were cloned by functional screening of a genomic library. Recombinant enzyme exhibiting the same specific activity as natural pTSOX could not be isolated using a similar or identical purification procedure. This difficulty was overcome by affinity purification of recombinant pTSOX containing a C-terminal (His)6 tag on the subunit (γ) encoded by soxG, the gene located at the 3′ end of the pTSOX operon. Affinity purified pTSOX could not be crystallized, a problem traced to microheterogeneity in the recombinant enzyme where about half of the FMN is present in a modified form that is not found in the natural enzyme and may be a biosynthetic intermediate. The modified flavin was eliminated by expression of the recombinant enzyme in the presence of sarcosine, the same reagent used to induce expression of the natural enzyme. Homogenous recombinant pTSOX was isolated from cells grown in the presence of sarcosine by chromatography on affinity and hydrophobic interaction matrices. High quality crystals that diffract to 1.85 Å resolution have been obtained.
Aminoglycoside-2′′-phosphotransferase-IVa [APH(2′′)-IVa] is an enzyme that is responsible for high-level gentamicin resistance in E. casseliflavus isolates. Three different crystals of wild-type substrate-free APH(2′′)-IVa have been prepared and preliminary X-ray diffraction experiments have been undertaken on all three crystal forms.
The deactivation of aminoglycoside antibiotics by chemical modification is one of the major sources of bacterial resistance to this family of therapeutic compounds, which includes the clinically relevant drugs streptomycin, kanamycin and gentamicin. The aminoglycoside phosphotransferases (APHs) form one such family of enzymes responsible for this resistance. The gene encoding one of these enzymes, aminoglycoside-2′′-phosphotransferase-IVa [APH(2′′)-IVa] from Enterococcus casseliflavus, has been cloned and the protein (comprising 306 amino-acid residues) has been expressed in Escherichia coli and purified. The enzyme was crystallized in three substrate-free forms. Two of the crystal forms belonged to the orthorhombic space group P212121 with similar unit-cell parameters, although one of the crystal forms had a unit-cell volume that was approximately 13% smaller than the other and a very low solvent content of around 38%. The third crystal form belonged to the monoclinic space group P21 and preliminary X-ray diffraction analysis was consistent with the presence of two molecules in the asymmetric unit. The orthorhombic crystal forms of apo APH(2′′)-IVa both diffracted to 2.2 Å resolution and the monoclinic crystal form diffracted to 2.4 Å resolution; synchrotron diffraction data were collected from these crystals at SSRL (Stanford, California, USA). Structure determination by molecular replacement using the structure of the related enzyme APH(2′′)-IIa is proceeding.
aminoglycoside-2′′-phosphotransferase-IVa; Enterococcus casseliflavus; antibiotic resistance
A case of imperfect pseudo-merohedral twinning in monoclinic crystals of fungal fatty acid synthase is discussed. A space-group transition during crystal dehydration resulted in a Moiré pattern-like interference of the twinned diffraction patterns.
The recent high-resolution structures of fungal fatty acid synthase (FAS) have provided new insights into the principles of fatty acid biosynthesis by large multifunctional enzymes. The crystallographic phase problem for the 2.6 MDa fungal FAS was initially solved to 5 Å resolution using two crystal forms from Thermomyces lanuginosus. Monoclinic crystals in space group P21 were obtained from orthorhombic crystals in space group P212121 by dehydration. Here, it is shown how this space-group transition induced imperfect pseudo-merohedral twinning in the monoclinic crystal, giving rise to a Moiré pattern-like interference of the two twin-related reciprocal lattices. The strategy for processing the twinned diffraction images and obtaining a quantitative analysis is presented. The twinning is also related to the packing of the molecules in the two crystal forms, which was derived from self-rotation function analysis and molecular-replacement solutions using a low-resolution electron microscopy map as a search model.
imperfect pseudo-merohedral twinning; fungal fatty acid synthase
The production and purification of recombinant SoGST3 and SoGST6, two GST-like proteins from S. oneidensis, are reported and preliminary crystallographic studies of crystals of the recombinant enzymes are presented.
Genome analysis of Shewanella oneidensis, a Gram-negative bacterium with an unusual repertoire of respiratory and redox capabilities, revealed the presence of six glutathione S-transferase-like genes (sogst1–sogst6). Glutathione S-transferases (GSTs; EC 220.127.116.11) are found in all kingdoms of life and are involved in phase II detoxification processes by catalyzing the nucleophilic attack of reduced glutathione on diverse electrophilic substrates, thereby decreasing their reactivity. Structure–function studies of prokaryotic GST-like proteins are surprisingly underrepresented in the scientific literature when compared with eukaryotic GSTs. Here, the production and purification of recombinant SoGST3 (SO_1576) and SoGST6 (SO_4697), two of the six GST-like proteins in S. oneidensis, are reported and preliminary crystallographic studies of crystals of the recombinant enzymes are presented. SoGST3 was crystallized in two different crystal forms in the presence of GSH and DTT that diffracted to high resolution: a primitive trigonal form in space group P31 that exhibited merohedral twinning with a high twin fraction and a primitive monoclinic form in space group P21. SoGST6 yielded primitive orthorhombic crystals in space group P212121 from which diffraction data could be collected to medium resolution after application of cryo-annealing protocols. Crystal structures of both SoGST3 and SoGST6 have been determined based on marginal search models by maximum-likelihood molecular replacement as implemented in the program Phaser.
glutathione S-transferases; Shewanella oneidensis
M. tuberculosis succinyl-diaminopimelate desuccinylase, the enzyme which catalyzes the seventh step of the lysine-biosynthesis pathway, has been cloned, expressed, purified and crystallized. Preliminary X-ray diffraction analysis indicated the presence of pseudo-merohedral twinning in space group P21, resulting in possible emulation of space group C2221.
Succinyl-diaminopimelate desuccinylase from Mycobacterium tuberculosis (DapE, Rv1202) has been cloned, heterologously expressed in Escherichia coli and purified using standard chromatographic techniques. Diffraction-quality crystals were obtained at acidic pH from ammonium sulfate and PEG and diffraction data were collected from two crystals to resolutions of 2.40 and 2.58 Å, respectively. The crystals belonged to the monoclinic space group P21, with unit-cell parameters a = 79.7, b = 76.0, c = 82.9 Å, β = 119°. The most probable content of the asymmetric unit was two molecules of DapE, which would correspond to a solvent content of 56%. Both examined crystals turned out to be pseudo-merohedrally twinned, with twin operator −h, −k, h + l and twin fractions of approximately 0.46 and 0.16, respectively.
succinyl-diaminopimelate desuccinylase; DapE; Rv1202; Mycobacterium tuberculosis
The first diffraction-quality crystals of a PutA protein are reported. One of the three crystal forms described here exhibits pseudo-merohedral twinning. Removal of the N-terminal histidine tag aided the crystallization of another form.
Proline utilization A proteins (PutAs) are large (1000–1300 residues) membrane-associated bifunctional flavoenzymes that catalyze the two-step oxidation of proline to glutamate by the sequential action of proline dehydrogenase and Δ1-pyrroline-5-carboxylate dehydrogenase domains. Here, the first successful crystallization efforts for a PutA protein are described. Three crystal forms of PutA from Bradyrhizobium japonicum are reported: apparent tetragonal, hexagonal and centered monoclinic. The apparent tetragonal and hexagonal crystals were grown in the presence of PEG 3350 and sodium formate near pH 7. The apparent tetragonal form diffracted to 2.7 Å resolution and exhibited pseudo-merohedral twinning such that the true space group is P212121 with four molecules in the asymmetric unit. The hexagonal form diffracted to 2.3 Å resolution and belonged to space group P6222 with one molecule in the asymmetric unit. Centered monoclinic crystals were grown in ammonium sulfate, diffracted to 2.3 Å resolution and had two molecules in the asymmetric unit. Removing the histidine tag was important in order to obtain the C2 crystal form.
proline utilization A; PutA; proline catabolism; proline dehydrogenase; P5C dehydrogenase; pseudo-merohedral twinning
The regulatory domain of M. tuberculosis aspartokinase, the enzyme which catalyses the first reaction step in the biosynthesis of the amino acids lysine, methionine and threonine, has been cloned, expressed, purified and crystallized. Preliminary X-ray diffraction analysis of several crystals revealed the presence of five distinct crystal forms.
The regulatory domain of Mycobacterium tuberculosis aspartokinase (Mtb-AK, Mtb-Ask, Rv3709c) has been cloned, heterologously expressed in Escherichia coli and purified using standard chromatographic techniques. Screening for initial crystallization conditions using the regulatory domain (AK-β) in the presence of the potential feedback inhibitor threonine identified four conditions which yielded crystals suitable for X-ray diffraction analysis. From these four conditions five different crystal forms of Mtb-AK-β resulted, three of which belonged to the orthorhombic system, one to the tetragonal system and one to the monoclinic system. The highest resolution (1.6 Å) was observed for a crystal form belonging to space group P212121, with unit-cell parameters a = 53.70, b = 63.43, c = 108.85 Å and two molecules per asymmetric unit.
aspartokinase; Rv3709c; Mycobacterium tuberculosis; tuberculosis
The NodS N-methyltransferase, an enzyme participating in the biosynthesis of the bacterial nodulation (Nod) factor necessary to establish symbiotic nitrogen fixation with a legume plant host, has been crystallized in the apo form as well as in complex with SAH. SAH is a byproduct of SAM degradation during the SAM-dependent methylation reaction.
The Nod factor (NF) is a rhizobial signal molecule that is involved in recognition of a legume host and the formation of root and stem nodules. Some unique enzymes are involved in the biosynthesis of NF, which is a variously but specifically substituted lipochitooligosaccharide. One of these enzymes is NodS, an N-methyltransferase that methylates end-deacetylated chitooligosaccharide substrates. In the methylation reaction, NodS uses S-adenosyl-l-methionine (SAM) as a methyl donor. To date, no structural information is available about NodS from any rhizobium. X-ray crystallographic studies of the NodS protein from Bradyrhizobium japonicum WM9, which infects the legumes lupin and serradella, have been undertaken. The nodS gene was cloned and the recombinant protein was expressed in Escherichia coli cells using natural amino acids and as an SeMet derivative. NodS without ligands was crystallized in the presence of PEG 3350 and MgCl2. The protein was also crystallized in complex with S-adenosyl-l-homocysteine (SAH) in the presence of PEG 8000 and MgCl2. SAH is produced from SAM as a byproduct of the methylation reaction. The crystals of apo NodS are tetragonal and diffracted X-rays to 2.42 Å resolution. The NodS–SAH complex crystallizes in an orthorhombic space group and the crystals diffracted X-rays to 1.85 Å resolution.
Bradyrhizobium; Nod factors; NodS; N-methyltransferases; SAM; SAH; symbiosis; legume plants; nitrogen assimilation
The crystallization and preliminary X-ray analysis of a β-d-xylosidase from G. stearothermophilus T-6, a family 43 glycoside hydrolase, is described. Native and catalytic inactive mutants of the enzymes were crystallized in two different space groups, orthorhombic P21212 and tetragonal P41212 (or the enantiomorphic space group P43212), using a sensitive cryoprotocol. The latter crystal form diffracted X-rays to a resolution of 2.2 Å.
β-d-Xylosidases (EC 18.104.22.168) are hemicellulases that cleave single xylose units from the nonreducing end of xylooligomers. In this study, the crystallization and preliminary X-ray analysis of a β-d-xylosidase from Geobacillus stearothermophilus T-6 (XynB3), a family 43 glycoside hydrolase, is described. XynB3 is a 535-amino-acid protein with a calculated molecular weight of 61 891 Da. Purified recombinant native and catalytic inactive mutant proteins were crystallized and cocrystallized with xylobiose in two different space groups, P21212 (unit-cell parameters a = 98.32, b = 99.36, c = 258.64 Å) and P41212 (or the enantiomorphic space group P43212; unit-cell parameters a = b = 140.15, c = 233.11 Å), depending on the detergent. Transferring crystals to cryoconditions required a very careful protocol. Orthorhombic crystals diffract to 2.5 Å and tetragonal crystals to 2.2 Å.
family 43 glycosidase hydrolases; xylosidases; hemicellulases; Geobacillus stearothermophilus; xylan; xylose
Protein crystallization is a slow process of trial and error and limits the amount of solved protein structures. Search of a universal heterogeneous nucleant is an effort to facilitate crystallizability of proteins.
The effect of polystyrene nanospheres on protein crystallization were tested with three commercial proteins: lysozyme, xylanase, xylose isomerase, and with five research target proteins: hydrophobins HFBI and HFBII, laccase, sarcosine dimethylglycine N-methyltransferase (SDMT), and anti-testosterone Fab fragment 5F2. The use of nanospheres both in screening and as an additive for known crystallization conditions was studied. In screening, the addition of an aqueous solution of nanosphere to the crystallization drop had a significant positive effect on crystallization success in comparison to the control screen. As an additive in hydrophobin crystallization, the nanospheres altered the crystal packing, most likely due to the amphiphilic nature of hydrophobins. In the case of laccase, nanospheres could be used as an alternative for streak-seeding, which insofar had remained the only technique to produce high-diffracting crystals. With methyltransferase SDMT the nanospheres, used also as an additive, produced fewer, larger crystals in less time. Nanospheres, combined with the streak-seeding method, produced single 5F2 Fab crystals in shorter equilibration times.
All in all, the use of nanospheres in protein crystallization proved to be beneficial, both when screening new crystallization conditions to promote nucleation and when used as an additive to produce better quality crystals, faster. The polystyrene nanospheres are easy to use, commercially available and close to being inert, as even with amphiphilic proteins only the crystal packing is altered and the nanospheres do not interfere with the structure and function of the protein.
X-ray crystallographic analysis of human inosine triphosphate pyrophosphohydrolase provided the secondary structure and active-site structure at 1.6 Å resolution in an orthorhombic crystal form. The structure gives a framework for future structure–function studies employing site-directed mutagenesis and for the identification of substrate/product-binding sites.
The structure of human inosine triphosphate pyrophosphohydrolase (ITPA) has been determined using diffraction data to 1.6 Å resolution. ITPA contributes to the accurate replication of DNA by cleansing cellular dNTP pools of mutagenic nucleotide purine analogs such as dITP or dXTP. A similar high-resolution unpublished structure has been deposited in the Protein Data Bank from a monoclinic and pseudo-merohedrally twinned crystal. Here, cocrystallization of ITPA with a molar ratio of XTP appears to have improved the crystals by eliminating twinning and resulted in an orthorhombic space group. However, there was no evidence for bound XTP in the structure. Comparison with substrate-bound NTPase from a thermophilic organism predicts the movement of residues within helix α1, the loop before α6 and helix α7 to cap off the active site when substrate is bound.
inosine triphosphate pyrophosphohydrolase
T. maritima TrmFO was overexpressed, purified and crystallized. A diffraction data set was collected to a resolution of 2.6 Å.
TrmFO, previously classified as GID, is a methyltransferase that catalyzes the formation of 5-methyluridine or ribothymidine (T) at position 54 in tRNA in some Gram-positive bacteria. To date, TrmFO is the only characterized tRNA methyltransferase that does not use S-adenosylmethionine as the methyl-group donor. Instead, the donor of the methyl group is N
10-methylenetetrahydrofolate. The crystallization and preliminary X-ray crystallographic studies of TrmFO are reported here. The recombinant protein, cloned from Thermotoga maritima genomic DNA, was overproduced in Esherichia coli and crystallized in 25%(v/v) PEG 4000, 100 mM NaCl and sodium citrate buffer pH 5.0 at 291 K using the hanging-drop vapor-diffusion method. The plate-shaped crystals diffracted to 2.6 Å and belong to the orthorhombic space group P212121, with unit-cell parameters a = 79.94, b = 92.46, c = 127.20 Å.
GIDs; TrmFO; RNA modifications
The halophilic methanogen Methanohalophilus portucalensis synthesizes three distinct zwitterions, (beta)-glutamine, N(sup(epsilon))-acetyl-(beta)-lysine (NA(beta)Lys), and glycine betaine, as osmolytes when it is grown at high concentrations of external NaCl. The selective distribution of these three species was determined by growing cells in the presence of osmolyte biosynthetic precursors. Glycine betaine is formed by the stepwise methylation of glycine. Exogenous glycine (10 mM) and sarcosine (10 mM), although internalized, do not bias the cells to accumulate any more betaine. However, exogenous N,N-dimethylglycine (10 mM) is available to the appropriate methyltransferase and the betaine generated from it suppresses the synthesis of other osmolytes. Precursors of the two zwitterionic (beta)-amino acids ((beta)-glutamate for (beta)-glutamine and (alpha)-lysine and diaminopimelate for NA(beta)Lys) have only small effects on (beta)-amino acid accumulation. The largest effect is provided by L-(alpha)-glutamine, suggesting that nitrogen assimilation is a key factor in osmolyte distribution.
The novel bacterial nitroreductase YwrO from B. amyloliquefaciens has been crystallized in two different crystal forms. An initial molecular-replacement solution has been obtained using the mammalian NQO2 structure.
CB1954 is an anticancer prodrug that is currently in clinical trials coupled with the Escherichia coli flavoenzyme nitroreductase (NTR) for use in directed-enzyme prodrug therapy (DEPT). The NTR enzyme is responsible for the conversion of the prodrug into a cytotoxic agent. The bifunctional alkylating agent produced by this bioactivation process leads to DNA damage and death of cancer cells. Recently, a novel flavoenzyme from Bacillus amyloliquefaciens, YwrO (Bam YwrO), was reported to be able to reduce CB1954 from its noncytotoxic form into its active form. The crystallization and preliminary X-ray diffraction analysis of two crystal forms of Bam YwrO are reported. The first crystal form is orthorhombic, with space group P22121, and diffracts X-rays to 2.18 Å resolution. The second crystal form is tetragonal, with space group P41, and diffracts X-rays to 3.4 Å. Determination of the Bam YwrO crystal structure will provide an understanding of the molecular recognition between this enzyme and the anticancer prodrug CB1954.
CB1954; flavoenzymes; Bacillus amyloliquefaciens; YwrO
Crystallization of the prefoldin β subunit Yke2 is reported. This protein is a novel and potentially important target for anti-cancer therapeutics.
The Gim complex (GimC) from Saccharomyces cerevisiae is a heterohexameric protein complex, also known as prefoldin (PFD), which binds and stabilizes unfolded target polypeptides and subsequently delivers them to chaperonins for completion of folding. In this study, the crystallization and preliminary X-ray analysis of one of the β subunits of the Gim complex (Yke2) from S. cerevisiae are described. The purified protein was crystallized by the vapour-diffusion method, producing two types of crystals that belonged to the orthorhombic space group C222 or the primitive monoclinic space group P21. The unit-cell parameters for the C-centred orthorhombic crystal were a = 48.2, b = 168.86, c = 131.81 Å and the unit-cell parameters for the primitive monoclinic crystal were a = 47.83, b = 134.90, c = 81.50 Å, β = 100.71°. The Yke2 crystals diffracted to 4.2 and 3.1 Å resolution, respectively, on a rotating-anode generator under cryoconditions. This is the first report concerning the crystallization of a β subunit of a eukaryotic prefoldin.
prefoldin; β subunit; Gim complex; Yke2
Crystals of the wild-type haloalkane dehalogenase DhaA derived from R. rhodochrous NCIMB 13064 and of its catalytically inactive variant DhaA13 were grown in the presence of various ligands and diffraction data were collected to high and atomic resolution.
Haloalkane dehalogenases make up an important class of hydrolytic enzymes which catalyse the cleavage of carbon–halogen bonds in halogenated aliphatic compounds. There is growing interest in these enzymes owing to their potential use in environmental and industrial applications. The haloalkane dehalogenase DhaA from Rhodococcus rhodochrous NCIMB 13064 can slowly detoxify the industrial pollutant 1,2,3-trichloropropane (TCP). Structural analysis of this enzyme complexed with target ligands was conducted in order to obtain detailed information about the structural limitations of its catalytic properties. In this study, the crystallization and preliminary X-ray analysis of complexes of wild-type DhaA with 2-propanol and with TCP and of complexes of the catalytically inactive variant DhaA13 with the dye coumarin and with TCP are described. The crystals of wild-type DhaA were plate-shaped and belonged to the triclinic space group P1, while the variant DhaA13 can form prism-shaped crystals belonging to the orthorhombic space group P212121 as well as plate-shaped crystals belonging to the triclinic space group P1. Diffraction data for crystals of wild-type DhaA grown from crystallization solutions with different concentrations of 2-propanol were collected to 1.70 and 1.26 Å resolution, respectively. A prism-shaped crystal of DhaA13 complexed with TCP and a plate-shaped crystal of the same variant complexed with the dye coumarin diffracted X-rays to 1.60 and 1.33 Å resolution, respectively. A crystal of wild-type DhaA and a plate-shaped crystal of DhaA13, both complexed with TCP, diffracted to atomic resolutions of 1.04 and 0.97 Å, respectively.
haloalkane dehalogenases; DhaA; Rhodococcus rhodochrous; microseeding; atomic resolution
Our previous work described a clear loss of Escherichia coli (E. coli) membrane integrity after incubation with glycine or its N-methylated derivatives N-methylglycine (sarcosine) and N,N-dimethylglycine (DMG), but not N,N,N-trimethylglycine (betaine), under alkaline stress conditions. The current study offers a thorough viability analysis, based on a combination of real-time physiological techniques, of E. coli exposed to glycine and its N-methylated derivatives at alkaline pH. Flow cytometry was applied to assess various physiological parameters such as membrane permeability, esterase activity, respiratory activity and membrane potential. ATP and inorganic phosphate concentrations were also determined. Membrane damage was confirmed through the measurement of nucleic acid leakage. Results further showed no loss of esterase or respiratory activity, while an instant and significant decrease in the ATP concentration occurred upon exposure to either glycine, sarcosine or DMG, but not betaine. There was a clear membrane hyperpolarization as well as a significant increase in cellular inorganic phosphate concentration. Based on these results, we suggest that the inability to sustain an adequate level of ATP combined with a decrease in membrane functionality leads to the loss of bacterial viability when exposed to the proton scavengers glycine, sarcosine and DMG at alkaline pH.
Allene oxide synthase, an atypical cytochrome P450 from Parthenium argentatum, was crystallized and diffraction data were collected to 2.4 Å resolution.
Oxylipins are oxygenated derivatives of fatty acids and pivotal signaling molecules in plants and animals. Allene oxide synthase (AOS) is a key cytochrome P450 CYP74 enzyme involved in the biosynthesis of plant oxylipin jasmonates to convert 13(S)-hydroperoxide to allene oxide. Guayule (Parthenium argentatum) AOS, CYP74A2, was expressed in Escherichia coli. Protein was purified using affinity chromatography and size exclusion chromatography, and then crystallized. Two different crystal forms were obtained from 0.2 M (NH4)H2PO4, 50% MPD, 0.1 M Tris, pH 8.5 at 277 K using the hanging-drop vapor-diffusion method. Preliminary X-ray analysis was carried out, and the crystals were found to belong to the tetragonal space group I422 with cell parameters a = b = 126.5, c = 163.9 Å, and the monoclinic space group C2 with cell parameters a = 336.5, b = 184.2, c = 159.0 Å, β = 118.6°. Diffraction data were collected to 2.4 Å resolution from a tetragonal form of crystal using a home X-ray source.
allene oxide synthase; cytochrome P450 CYP74A2; oxylipin; jasmonate; guayule (Parthenium argentatum); crystallization
The ferredoxin reductase component of carbazole 1,9a-dioxygenase (Red) is involved in electron transfer from NAD(P)H to ferredoxin. The class IIA Red from Novosphingobium sp. KA1 was crystallized and the crystal diffracted to a resolution of 1.58 Å.
Carbazole 1,9a-dioxygenase (CARDO) is the initial enzyme of the carbazole-degradation pathway. The CARDO of Novosphingobium sp. KA1 consists of a terminal oxygenase, a putidaredoxin-type ferredoxin and a ferredoxin-NADH oxidoreductase (Red) and is classified as a class IIA Rieske oxygenase. Red from KA1 was crystallized at 278 K by the hanging-drop vapour-diffusion method using PEG 4000. The crystal diffracted to 1.58 Å resolution and belonged to space group P32, with unit-cell parameters a = b = 92.2, c = 78.6 Å, α = γ = 90, β = 120°. Preliminary analysis of the X-ray diffraction data revealed that the asymmetric unit contained two Red monomers. The crystal appeared to be a merohedral twin, with a twin fraction of 0.32 and twin law (−h, −k, l).
carbazole; Rieske nonhaem iron oxygenases; ferredoxin reductases
P212121 crystals of SIV Nef core domain bound to a peptide fragment of the T-cell receptor ζ subunit exhibited noncrystallographic symmetry and nearly perfect pseudo-merohedral twinning simulating tetragonal symmetry. For a different peptide fragment, nontwinned tetragonal crystals were observed but diffracted to lower resolution. The structure was determined after assignment of the top molecular-replacement solutions to various twin or NCS domains followed by refinement under the appropriate twin law.
HIV/SIV Nef mediates many cellular processes through interactions with various cytoplasmic and membrane-associated host proteins, including the signalling ζ subunit of the T-cell receptor (TCRζ). Here, the crystallization strategy, methods and refinement procedures used to solve the structures of the core domain of the SIVmac239 isolate of Nef (Nefcore) in complex with two different TCRζ fragments are described. The structure of SIVmac239 Nefcore bound to the longer TCRζ polypeptide (Leu51–Asp93) was determined to 3.7 Å resolution (R
work = 28.7%) in the tetragonal space group P43212. The structure of SIVmac239 Nefcore in complex with the shorter TCRζ polypeptide (Ala63–Arg80) was determined to 2.05 Å resolution (R
work = 17.0%), but only after the detection of nearly perfect pseudo-merohedral crystal twinning and proper assignment of the orthorhombic space group P212121. The reduction in crystal space-group symmetry induced by the truncated TCRζ polypeptide appears to be caused by the rearrangement of crystal-contact hydrogen-bonding networks and the substitution of crystallographic symmetry operations by similar noncrystallographic symmetry (NCS) operations. The combination of NCS rotations that were nearly parallel to the twin operation (k, h, −l) and a and b unit-cell parameters that were nearly identical predisposed the P212121 crystal form to pseudo-merohedral twinning.
pseudo-merohedral twinning; noncrystallographic symmetry; pseudosymmetry; human immunodeficiency virus; Nef; T-cell receptor