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1.  The OXR domain defines a conserved family of eukaryotic oxidation resistance proteins 
BMC Cell Biology  2007;8:13.
The NCOA7 gene product is an estrogen receptor associated protein that is highly similar to the human OXR1 gene product, which functions in oxidation resistance. OXR genes are conserved among all sequenced eukaryotes from yeast to humans. In this study we examine if NCOA7 has an oxidation resistance function similar to that demonstrated for OXR1. We also examine NCOA7 expression in response to oxidative stress and its subcellular localization in human cells, comparing these properties with those of OXR1.
We find that NCOA7, like OXR1 can suppress the oxidative mutator phenotype when expressed in an E. coli strain that exhibits an oxidation specific mutator phenotype. Moreover, NCOA7's oxidation resistance function requires expression of only its carboxyl-terminal domain and is similar in this regard to OXR1. We find that, in human cells, NCOA7 is constitutively expressed and is not induced by oxidative stress and appears to localize to the nucleus following estradiol stimulation. These properties of NCOA7 are in striking contrast to those of OXR1, which is induced by oxidative stress, localizes to mitochondria, and appears to be excluded, or largely absent from nuclei.
NCOA7 most likely arose from duplication. Like its homologue, OXR1, it is capable of reducing the DNA damaging effects of reactive oxygen species when expressed in bacteria, indicating the protein has an activity that can contribute to oxidation resistance. Unlike OXR1, it appears to localize to nuclei and interacts with the estrogen receptor. This raises the possibility that NCOA7 encodes the nuclear counterpart of the mitochondrial OXR1 protein and in mammalian cells it may reduce the oxidative by-products of estrogen metabolite-mediated DNA damage.
PMCID: PMC1847813  PMID: 17391516
2.  The Anopheles gambiae Oxidation Resistance 1 (OXR1) Gene Regulates Expression of Enzymes That Detoxify Reactive Oxygen Species 
PLoS ONE  2010;5(6):e11168.
OXR1 is an ancient gene, present in all eukaryotes examined so far that confers protection from oxidative stress by an unknown mechanism. The most highly conserved region of the gene is the carboxyl-terminal TLDc domain, which has been shown to be sufficient to prevent oxidative damage.
Methodology/Principal Findings
OXR1 has a complex genomic structure in the mosquito A. gambiae, and we confirm that multiple splice forms are expressed in adult females. Our studies revealed that OXR1 regulates the basal levels of catalase (CAT) and glutathione peroxidase (Gpx) expression, two enzymes involved in detoxification of hydrogen peroxide, giving new insight into the mechanism of action of OXR1. Gene silencing experiments indicate that the Jun Kinase (JNK) gene acts upstream of OXR1 and also regulates expression of CAT and GPx. Both OXR1 and JNK genes are required for adult female mosquitoes to survive chronic oxidative stress. OXR1 silencing decreases P. berghei oocyst formation. Unexpectedly, JNK silencing has the opposite effect and enhances Plasmodium infection in the mosquito, suggesting that JNK may also mediate some, yet to be defined, antiparasitic response.
The JNK pathway regulates OXR1 expression and OXR1, in turn, regulates expression of enzymes that detoxify reactive oxygen species (ROS) in Anopheles gambiae. OXR1 silencing decreases Plasmodium infection in the mosquito, while JNK silencing has the opposite effect and enhances infection.
PMCID: PMC2887368  PMID: 20567517
3.  Oxr1 Is Essential for Protection against Oxidative Stress-Induced Neurodegeneration 
PLoS Genetics  2011;7(10):e1002338.
Oxidative stress is a common etiological feature of neurological disorders, although the pathways that govern defence against reactive oxygen species (ROS) in neurodegeneration remain unclear. We have identified the role of oxidation resistance 1 (Oxr1) as a vital protein that controls the sensitivity of neuronal cells to oxidative stress; mice lacking Oxr1 display cerebellar neurodegeneration, and neurons are less susceptible to exogenous stress when the gene is over-expressed. A conserved short isoform of Oxr1 is also sufficient to confer this neuroprotective property both in vitro and in vivo. In addition, biochemical assays indicate that Oxr1 itself is susceptible to cysteine-mediated oxidation. Finally we show up-regulation of Oxr1 in both human and pre-symptomatic mouse models of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, indicating that Oxr1 is potentially a novel neuroprotective factor in neurodegenerative disease.
Author Summary
Oxygen is vital for life, but it can also cause damage to cells. Consequently, protective proteins (antioxidants) are utilised to maintain the fine balance between oxygen metabolism and the production of potentially toxic reactive oxygen species (ROS). If this balance is not maintained, oxidative stress occurs and excess ROS are generated, causing damage to DNA, proteins, and lipids. The brain is particularly susceptible to oxidative stress, and ROS–induced damage is a common feature of all major neurodegenerative disorders, including amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) and Parkinson's disease (PD). However, the molecular mechanisms of ROS defence in neurons are still under investigation. Here we describe the characterisation of oxidation resistance 1 (Oxr1), a gene previously shown to be induced under oxidative stress. We show both in mice and in cells that loss of Oxr1 causes cell death and that increasing protein levels can protect against ROS. In addition, Oxr1 is over-expressed in the spinal cord in ALS patients, as well as in a pre-symptomatic ALS mouse model. These data demonstrate for the first time that Oxr1 is vital for the protection of neuronal cells against oxidative stress and that induction of Oxr1 may be relevant to neurodegenerative pathways in disease.
PMCID: PMC3197693  PMID: 22028674
4.  Stress Induction and Mitochondrial Localization of Oxr1 Proteins in Yeast and Humans 
Molecular and Cellular Biology  2004;24(8):3180-3187.
Reactive oxygen species (ROS) are critical molecules produced as a consequence of aerobic respiration. It is essential for cells to control the production and activity of such molecules in order to protect the genome and regulate cellular processes such as stress response and apoptosis. Mitochondria are the major source of ROS within the cell, and as a result, numerous proteins have evolved to prevent or repair oxidative damage in this organelle. The recently discovered OXR1 gene family represents a set of conserved eukaryotic genes. Previous studies of the yeast OXR1 gene indicate that it functions to protect cells from oxidative damage. In this report, we show that human and yeast OXR1 genes are induced by heat and oxidative stress and that their proteins localize to the mitochondria and function to protect against oxidative damage. We also demonstrate that mitochondrial localization is required for Oxr1 protein to prevent oxidative damage.
PMCID: PMC381681  PMID: 15060142
5.  Escherichia coli Nth and human hNTH1 DNA glycosylases are involved in removal of 8-oxoguanine from 8-oxoguanine/guanine mispairs in DNA 
Nucleic Acids Research  2001;29(9):1975-1981.
The spectrum of DNA damage caused by reactive oxygen species includes a wide variety of modifications of purine and pyrimidine bases. Among these modified bases, 7,8-dihydro-8-oxoguanine (8-oxoG) is an important mutagenic lesion. Base excision repair is a critical mechanism for preventing mutations by removing the oxidative lesion from the DNA. That the spontaneous mutation frequency of the Escherichia coli mutT mutant is much higher than that of the mutM or mutY mutant indicates a significant potential for mutation due to 8-oxoG incorporation opposite A and G during DNA replication. In fact, the removal of A and G in such a situation by MutY protein would fix rather than prevent mutation. This suggests the need for differential removal of 8-oxoG when incorporated into DNA, versus being generated in situ. In this study we demonstrate that E.coli Nth protein (endonuclease III) has an 8-oxoG DNA glycosylase/AP lyase activity which removes 8-oxoG preferentially from 8-oxoG/G mispairs. The MutM and Nei proteins are also capable of removing 8-oxoG from mispairs. The frequency of spontaneous G:C→C:G transversions was significantly increased in E.coli CC103mutMnthnei mutants compared with wild-type, mutM, nth, nei, mutMnei, mutMnth and nthnei strains. From these results it is concluded that Nth protein, together with the MutM and Nei proteins, is involved in the repair of 8-oxoG when it is incorporated opposite G. Furthermore, we found that human hNTH1 protein, a homolog of E.coli Nth protein, has similar DNA glycosylase/AP lyase activity that removes 8-oxoG from 8-oxoG/G mispairs.
PMCID: PMC37258  PMID: 11328882
6.  Thermostable repair enzyme for oxidative DNA damage from extremely thermophilic bacterium, Thermus thermophilus HB8. 
Nucleic Acids Research  1998;26(4):903-910.
The mutM (fpg) gene, which encodes a DNA glycosylase that excises an oxidatively damaged form of guanine, was cloned from an extremely thermophilic bacterium, Thermus thermophilus HB8. Its nucleotide sequence encoded a 266 amino acid protein with a molecular mass of approximately 30 kDa. Its predicted amino acid sequence showed 42% identity with the Escherichia coli protein. The amino acid residues Cys, Asn, Gln and Met, known to be chemically unstable at high temperatures, were decreased in number in T.thermophilus MutM protein compared to those of the E.coli one, whereas the number of Pro residues, considered to increase protein stability, was increased. The T.thermophilus mutM gene complemented the mutability of the E.coli mutM mutY double mutant, suggesting that T. thermophilus MutM protein was active in E.coli. The T.thermophilus MutM protein was overproduced in E.coli and then purified to homogeneity. Size-exclusion chromatography indicated that T. thermophilus MutM protein exists as a more compact monomer than the E.coli MutM protein in solution. Circular dichroism measurements indicated that the alpha-helical content of the protein was approximately 30%. Thermus thermophilus MutM protein was stable up to 75 degrees C at neutral pH, and between pH 5 and 11 and in the presence of up to 4 M urea at 25 degrees C. Denaturation analysis of T.thermophilus MutM protein in the presence of urea suggested that the protein had at least two domains, with estimated stabilities of 8.6 and 16.2 kcal/mol-1, respectively. Thermus thermophilus MutM protein showed 8-oxoguanine DNA glycosylase activity in vitro at both low and high temperatures.
PMCID: PMC147369  PMID: 9461446
7.  MicroRNA-200b Downregulates Oxidation Resistance 1 (Oxr1) Expression in the Retina of Type 1 Diabetes Model 
MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are known to participate in post-transcriptional regulation of gene expression and are involved in multiple pathogenic processes. Here, we identified miRNA expression changes in the retinas of Akita mice, a genetic model of type 1 diabetes, and investigated the potential role of miRNA in diabetic retinopathy.
Visual function of Akita and control mice was evaluated by electroretinography. MiRNA expression changes in the retinas of Akita mice were identified by miRNA-specific microarray and confirmed by quantitative RT-PCR (qRT-PCR). The potential downstream targets of identified miRNAs were predicted by bioinformatic analysis using web-based applications and confirmed by dual luciferase assay. The mRNA and protein changes of identified downstream targets were examined by qRT-PCR and Western blot analysis.
MiRNA-specific microarray and qRT-PCR showed that miR-200b was upregulated significantly in the Akita mouse retina. Sequence analysis and luciferase assay identified oxidation resistance 1 (Oxr1) as a downstream target gene regulated by miR-200b. In a human Müller cell line, MIO-M1, transfection of a miR-200b mimic downregulated Oxr1 expression. Conversely, transfection of MIO-M1 with a miR-200b inhibitor resulted in upregulated Oxr1. Furthermore, overexpression of recombinant Oxr1 attenuated oxidative stress marker, nitration of cellular proteins, and ameliorated apoptosis induced by 4-hydroxynonenal (4-HNE), an oxidative stressor. Similarly, transfection of a miR-200b inhibitor decreased, whereas transfection of miR-200b mimic increased the number of apoptotic cells following 4-HNE treatment.
These results suggested that miR-200b–regulated Oxr1 potentially has a protective role in diabetic retinopathy.
This study demonstrated that miR-200b was upregulated in the Akita retina, and miR-200b downregulates the expression of Oxr1, which potentially has a protective role in diabetic retinopathy.
PMCID: PMC3626515  PMID: 23404117
8.  Physical and Functional Interactions between Escherichia coli MutY Glycosylase and Mismatch Repair Protein MutS▿ †  
Journal of Bacteriology  2006;189(3):902-910.
Escherichia coli MutY and MutS increase replication fidelity by removing adenines that were misincorporated opposite 7,8-dihydro-8-oxo-deoxyguanines (8-oxoG), G, or C. MutY DNA glycosylase removes adenines from these mismatches through a short-patch base excision repair pathway and thus prevents G:C-to-T:A and A:T-to-G:C mutations. MutS binds to the mismatches and initiates the long-patch mismatch repair on daughter DNA strands. We have previously reported that the human MutY homolog (hMYH) physically and functionally interacts with the human MutS homolog, hMutSα (Y. Gu et al., J. Biol. Chem. 277:11135-11142, 2002). Here, we show that a similar relationship between MutY and MutS exists in E. coli. The interaction of MutY and MutS involves the Fe-S domain of MutY and the ATPase domain of MutS. MutS, in eightfold molar excess over MutY, can enhance the binding activity of MutY with an A/8-oxoG mismatch by eightfold. The MutY expression level and activity in mutS mutant strains are sixfold and twofold greater, respectively, than those for the wild-type cells. The frequency of A:T-to-G:C mutations is reduced by two- to threefold in a mutS mutY mutant compared to a mutS mutant. Our results suggest that MutY base excision repair and mismatch repair defend against the mutagenic effect of 8-oxoG lesions in a cooperative manner.
PMCID: PMC1797285  PMID: 17114250
9.  A MATE-Family Efflux Pump Rescues the Escherichia coli 8-Oxoguanine-Repair-Deficient Mutator Phenotype and Protects Against H2O2 Killing 
PLoS Genetics  2010;6(5):e1000931.
Hypermutation may accelerate bacterial evolution in the short-term. In the long-term, however, hypermutators (cells with an increased rate of mutation) can be expected to be at a disadvantage due to the accumulation of deleterious mutations. Therefore, in theory, hypermutators are doomed to extinction unless they compensate the elevated mutational burden (deleterious load). Different mechanisms capable of restoring a low mutation rate to hypermutators have been proposed. By choosing an 8-oxoguanine-repair-deficient (GO-deficient) Escherichia coli strain as a hypermutator model, we investigated the existence of genes able to rescue the hypermutable phenotype by multicopy suppression. Using an in vivo-generated mini-MudII4042 genomic library and a mutator screen, we obtained chromosomal fragments that decrease the rate of mutation in a mutT-deficient strain. Analysis of a selected clone showed that the expression of NorM is responsible for the decreased mutation rate in 8-oxoguanine-repair-deficient (mutT, mutY, and mutM mutY) strains. NorM is a member of the multidrug and toxin extrusion (MATE) family of efflux pumps whose role in E. coli cell physiology remains unknown. Our results indicate that NorM may act as a GO-system backup decreasing AT to CG and GC to TA transversions. In addition, the ability of NorM to reduce the level of intracellular reactive oxygen species (ROS) in a GO-deficient strain and protect the cell from oxidative stress, including protein carbonylation, suggests that it can extrude specific molecules—byproducts of bacterial metabolism—that oxidize the guanine present in both DNA and nucleotide pools. Altogether, our results indicate that NorM protects the cell from specific ROS when the GO system cannot cope with the damage.
Author Summary
Some bacteria and eukaryotic cells produce a higher-than-normal number of mutations (so-called “mutators”). Because some of the mutations produced can be favorable (such as antibiotic resistance in bacteria or resistance to anticancer drugs in human tumor cells), the high mutation rate may provide a short-term advantage. However, the production of huge numbers of mutations may compromise the future of these cells because they also accumulate disadvantageous mutations. Consequently, cells may contain backup mechanisms to reduce the accumulation of mutations. We have found that some types of hypermutable mutants can escape this fate by increasing the expression of an efflux pump predicted to export specific oxidative substances, the precursors of many mutations, and consequently reducing their number. Amazingly, this over-expression may confer several advantageous phenotypes simultaneously, such as antibiotic resistance, protection against reactive oxygen species and antimutability.
PMCID: PMC2865507  PMID: 20463878
10.  Mutagenesis and Repair in Bacillus anthracis: the Effect of Mutators▿  
Journal of Bacteriology  2007;189(6):2331-2338.
We have generated mutator strains of Bacillus anthracis Sterne by using directed gene knockouts to investigate the effect of deleting genes involved in mismatch repair, oxidative repair, and maintaining triphosphate pools. The single-knockout strains are deleted for mutS, mutY, mutM, or ndk. We also made double-knockout strains that are mutS ndk or mutY mutM. We have measured the levels of mutations in the rpoB gene that lead to the Rifr phenotype and have examined the mutational specificity. In addition, we examined the mutational specificity of two mutagens, 5-azacytidine and N-methyl-N′-nitro-N-nitroso-guanidine. The mutY and mutM single knockouts are weak mutators by themselves, but the combination of mutY mutM results in very high mutation rates, all due to G:C → T:A transversions. The situation parallels that seen in Escherichia coli. Also, mutS knockouts are strong mutators and even stronger in the presence of a deletion of ndk. The number of sites in rpoB that can result in the Rifr phenotype by single-base substitution is more limited than in certain other bacteria, such as E. coli and Deinococcus radiodurans, although the average mutation rate per mutational site is roughly comparable. Hotspots at sites with virtually identical surrounding sequences are organism specific.
PMCID: PMC1899402  PMID: 17220233
11.  Escherichia coli MutY protein has a guanine-DNA glycosylase that acts on 7,8-dihydro-8-oxoguanine:guanine mispair to prevent spontaneous G:C-->C:G transversions. 
Nucleic Acids Research  1998;26(20):4669-4675.
Low rates of spontaneous G:C-->C:G transversions would be achieved not only by the correction of base mismatches during DNA replication but also by the prevention and removal of oxidative base damage in DNA. Escherichia coli must have several pathways to repair such mismatches and DNA modifications. In this study, we attempted to identify mutator loci leading to G:C-->C:G transversions in E.coli. The strain CC103 carrying a specific mutation in lacZ was mutagenized by random miniTn 10 insertion mutagenesis. In this strain, only the G:C-->C:G change can revert the glutamic acid at codon 461, which is essential for sufficient beta-galactosidase activity to allow growth on lactose. Mutator strains were detected as colonies with significantly increased rates of papillae formation on glucose minimal plates containing P-Gal and X-Gal. We screened approximately 40 000 colonies and selected several mutator strains. The strain GC39 showed the highest mutation rate to Lac+. The gene responsible for the mutator phenotypes, mut39 , was mapped at around 67 min on the E.coli chromosome. The sequencing of the miniTn 10 -flanking DNA region revealed that the mut39 was identical to the mutY gene of E.coli. The plasmid carrying the mutY + gene reduced spontaneous G:C-->T:A and G:C-->C:G mutations in both mutY and mut39 strains. Purified MutY protein bound to the oligonucleotides containing 7,8-dihydro-8-oxo-guanine (8-oxoG):G and 8-oxoG:A. Furthermore, we found that the MutY protein had a DNA glycosylase activity which removes unmodified guanine from the 8-oxoG:G mispair. These results demonstrate that the MutY protein prevents the generation of G:C-->C:G transversions by removing guanine from the 8-oxoG:G mispair in E.coli.
PMCID: PMC147911  PMID: 9753736
12.  Structural and Functional Divergence of MutS2 from Bacterial MutS1 and Eukaryotic MSH4-MSH5 Homologs†  
Journal of Bacteriology  2005;187(10):3528-3537.
MutS homologs, identified in nearly all bacteria and eukaryotes, include the bacterial proteins MutS1 and MutS2 and the eukaryotic MutS homologs 1 to 7, and they often are involved in recognition and repair of mismatched bases and small insertion/deletions, thereby limiting illegitimate recombination and spontaneous mutation. To explore the relationship of MutS2 to other MutS homologs, we examined conserved protein domains. Fundamental differences in structure between MutS2 and other MutS homologs suggest that MutS1 and MutS2 diverged early during evolution, with all eukaryotic homologs arising from a MutS1 ancestor. Data from MutS1 crystal structures, biochemical results from MutS2 analyses, and our phylogenetic studies suggest that MutS2 has functions distinct from other members of the MutS family. A mutS2 mutant was constructed in Helicobacter pylori, which lacks mutS1 and mismatch repair genes mutL and mutH. We show that MutS2 plays no role in mismatch or recombinational repair or deletion between direct DNA repeats. In contrast, MutS2 plays a significant role in limiting intergenomic recombination across a range of donor DNA tested. This phenotypic analysis is consistent with the phylogenetic and biochemical data suggesting that MutS1 and MutS2 have divergent functions.
PMCID: PMC1112012  PMID: 15866941
13.  Molecular Cloning and Functional Analysis of the MutY Homolog of Deinococcus radiodurans 
Journal of Bacteriology  2001;183(21):6151-6158.
The mutY homolog gene (mutYDr) from Deinococcus radiodurans encodes a 39.4-kDa protein consisting of 363 amino acids that displays 35% identity to the Escherichia coli MutY (MutYEc) protein. Expressed MutYDr is able to complement E. coli mutY mutants but not mutM mutants to reduce the mutation frequency. The glycosylase and binding activities of MutYDr with an A/G-containing substrate are more sensitive to high salt and EDTA concentrations than the activities with an A/7,8-dihydro-8-oxoguanine (GO)-containing substrate are. Like the MutYEc protein, purified recombinant MutYDr expressed in E. coli has adenine glycosylase activity with A/G, A/C, and A/GO mismatches and weak guanine glycosylase activity with a G/GO mismatch. However, MutYDr exhibits limited apurinic/apyrimidinic lyase activity and can form only weak covalent protein-DNA complexes in the presence of sodium borohydride. This may be due to an arginine residue that is present in MutYDr at the position corresponding to the position of MutYEc Lys142, which forms the Schiff base with DNA. The kinetic parameters of MutYDr are similar to those of MutYEc. Although MutYDr has similar substrate specificity and a binding preference for an A/GO mismatch over an A/G mismatch, as MutYEc does, the binding affinities for both mismatches are slightly lower for MutYDr than for MutYEc. Thus, MutYDr can protect the cell from GO mutational effects caused by ionizing radiation and oxidative stress.
PMCID: PMC100089  PMID: 11591657
14.  KsgA, a 16S rRNA adenine methyltransferase, has a novel DNA glycosylase/AP lyase activity to prevent mutations in Escherichia coli 
Nucleic Acids Research  2009;37(7):2116-2125.
The 5-formyluracil (5-foU), a major mutagenic oxidative damage of thymine, is removed from DNA by Nth, Nei and MutM in Escherichia coli. However, DNA polymerases can also replicate past the 5-foU by incorporating C and G opposite the lesion, although the mechanism of correction of the incorporated bases is still unknown. In this study, using a borohydride-trapping assay, we identified a protein trapped by a 5-foU/C-containing oligonucleotide in an extract from E. coli mutM nth nei mutant. The protein was subsequently purified from the E. coli mutM nth nei mutant and was identified as KsgA, a 16S rRNA adenine methyltransferase. Recombinant KsgA also formed the trapped complex with 5-foU/C- and thymine glycol (Tg)/C-containing oligonucleotides. Furthermore, KsgA excised C opposite 5-foU, Tg and 5-hydroxymethyluracil (5-hmU) from duplex oligonucleotides via a β-elimination reaction, whereas it could not remove the damaged base. In contrast, KsgA did not remove C opposite normal bases, 7,8-dihydro-8-oxoguanine and 2-hydroxyadenine. Finally, the introduction of the ksgA mutation increased spontaneous mutations in E. coli mutM mutY and nth nei mutants. These results demonstrate that KsgA has a novel DNA glycosylase/AP lyase activity for C mispaired with oxidized T that prevents the formation of mutations, which is in addition to its known rRNA adenine methyltransferase activity essential for ribosome biogenesis.
PMCID: PMC2673420  PMID: 19223326
15.  Dominant negative mutator mutations in the mutS gene of Escherichia coli. 
Journal of Bacteriology  1994;176(17):5393-5400.
The MutS protein of Escherichia coli is part of the dam-directed MutHLS mismatch repair pathway which rectifies replication errors and which prevents recombination between related sequences. In order to more fully understand the role of MutS in these processes, dominant negative mutS mutations on a multicopy plasmid were isolated by screening transformed wild-type cells for a mutator phenotype, using a Lac+ papillation assay. Thirty-eight hydroxylamine- and 22 N-methyl-N'-nitro-N-nitrosoguanidine-induced dominant mutations were isolated. Nine of these mutations altered the P-loop motif of the ATP-binding site, resulting in four amino acid substitutions. With one exception, the remaining sequenced mutations all caused substitution of amino acids conserved during evolution. The dominant mutations in the P-loop consensus caused severely reduced repair of heteroduplex DNA in vivo in a mutS mutant host strain. In a wild-type strain, the level of repair was decreased by the dominant mutations to between 12 to 90% of the control value, which is consistent with interference of wild-type MutS function by the mutant proteins. Increasing the wild-type mutS gene dosage resulted in a reversal of the mutator phenotype in about 60% of the mutant strains, indicating that the mutant and wild-type proteins compete. In addition, 20 mutant isolates showed phenotypic reversal by increasing the gene copies of either mutL or mutH. There was a direct correlation between the levels of recombination and mutagenesis in the mutant strains, suggesting that these phenotypes are due to the same function of MutS.
PMCID: PMC196726  PMID: 8071216
16.  Role of a MutY DNA Glycosylase in Combating Oxidative DNA damage in Helicobacter pylori 
DNA repair  2006;6(1):19-26.
MutY is an adenine glycosylase that has the ability to efficiently remove adenines from adenine/7,8-dihydro-8-oxoguanine (8-oxo-G) or adenine/guanine mismatches, and plays an important role in oxidative DNA damage repair. The human gastric pathogen Helicobacter pylori has a homolog of the MutY enzyme. To investigate the physiological roles of MutY in H. pylori, we constructed and characterized a mutY mutant. H. pylori mutY mutants incubated at 5% O2 have a 325 fold higher spontaneous mutation rate than its parent. The mutation rate is further increased by exposing the mutant to atmospheric levels of oxygen, an effect that is not seen in an E. coli mutY mutant. Most of the mutations that occurred in H. pylori mutY mutants, as examined by rpoB sequence changes that confer rifampicin resistance, are GC to TA transversions. The H. pylori enzyme has the ability to complement an E. coli mutY mutant, restoring its mutation frequency to the wild-type level. Pure H. pylori MutY has the ability to remove adenines from A/8-oxo-G mismatches, but strikingly no ability to cleave A/G mismatches. This is surprising because E. coli MutY can more rapidly turnover A/G than A/8-oxo-G. Thus, H. pylori MutY is an adenine glycosylase involved in the repair of oxidative DNA damage with a specificity for detecting 8-oxo-G. In addition, H. pylori mutY mutants are only 30% as efficient as wild-type in colonizing the stomach of mice, indicating that H. pylori MutY plays a significant role in oxidative DNA damage repair in vivo.
PMCID: PMC1829490  PMID: 16996809
17.  Effects of anaerobic regulatory mutations and catabolite repression on regulation of hydrogen metabolism and hydrogenase isoenzyme composition in Salmonella typhimurium. 
Journal of Bacteriology  1986;168(1):405-411.
Hydrogen metabolism in Salmonella typhimurium is differentially regulated by mutations in the two anaerobic regulatory pathways, defined by the fnr (oxrA) and oxrC genes, and is controlled by catabolite repression. The synthesis of the individual hydrogenase isoenzymes is also specifically influenced by fnr and oxrC mutations and by catabolite repression in a manner entirely consistent with the proposed role for each isoenzyme in hydrogen metabolism. Synthesis of hydrogenase isoenzyme 2 was found to be fnr dependent and oxrC independent, consistent with a role in respiration-linked hydrogen uptake which was shown to be similarly regulated. Also in keeping with such a respiratory role was the finding that both hydrogen uptake and the expression of isoenzyme 2 are under catabolite repression. In contrast, formate hydrogenlyase-dependent hydrogen evolution, characteristic of fermentative growth, was reduced in oxrC strains but not in fnr strains. Hydrogenase 3 activity was similarly regulated, consistent with a role in hydrogen evolution. Unlike the expression of hydrogenases 2 and 3, hydrogenase 1 expression was both fnr and oxrC dependent. Hydrogen uptake during fermentative growth was also both fnr and oxrC dependent. This provided good evidence for a distinction between hydrogen uptake during fermentation- and respiration-dependent growth and for a hydrogen-recycling process. The pattern of anaerobic control of hydrogenase activities illustrated the functional diversity of the isoenzymes and, in addition, the physiological distinction between the two anaerobic regulatory pathways, anaerobic respiratory genes being fnr dependent and enzymes required during fermentative growth being oxrC dependent.
PMCID: PMC213465  PMID: 3020003
18.  The C-terminal domain of Escherichia coli MutY is involved in DNA binding and glycosylase activities 
Nucleic Acids Research  2003;31(12):3038-3049.
Escherichia coli MutY is an adenine and a weak guanine DNA glycosylase involved in reducing mutagenic effects of 7,8-dihydro-8-oxo-guanine (8-oxoG). The C-terminal domain of MutY is required for 8-oxoG recognition and is critical for mutation avoidance of oxidative damage. To determine which residues of this domain are involved in 8-oxoG recognition, we constructed four MutY mutants based on similarities to MutT, which hydrolyzes specifically 8-oxo-dGTP to 8-oxo-dGMP. F294A-MutY has a slightly reduced binding affinity to A/G mismatch but has a severe defect in A/8-oxoG binding at 20°C. The catalytic activity of F294A-MutY is much weaker than that of the wild-type MutY. The DNA binding activity of R249A-MutY is comparable to that of the wild-type enzyme but the catalytic activity is reduced with both A/G and A/8-oxoG mismatches. The biochemical activities of F261A-MutY are nearly similar to those of the wild-type enzyme. The solubility of P262A-MutY was improved as a fusion protein containing streptococcal protein G (GB1 domain) at its N-terminus. The binding of GB1-P262A-MutY with both A/G and A/8-oxoG mismatches are slightly weaker than those of the wild-type protein. The catalytic activity of GB1-P262A-MutY is weaker than that of the wild-type enzyme at lower enzyme concentrations. Importantly, all four mutants can complement mutY mutants in vivo when expressed at high levels; however, F294A, R249A and P262A, but not F261A, are partially defective in vivo when they are expressed at low levels. These results strongly support that the C-terminal domain of MutY is involved not only in 8-oxoG recognition, but also affects the binding and catalytic activities toward A/G mismatches.
PMCID: PMC162338  PMID: 12799430
19.  Three classes of Escherichia coli mutants selected for aerobic expression of fumarate reductase. 
Journal of Bacteriology  1986;168(3):1415-1421.
Fumarate reductase (encoded by frd) and succinate dehydrogenase (encoded by sdh) of Escherichia coli are both known to catalyze the interconversion of fumarate and succinate. Fumarate reductase, however, is not inducible aerobically and therefore cannot participate in the dehydrogenation of succinate. Three classes of suppressor mutants, classified as frd oxygen-resistant [frd(Oxr)], constitutive [frd(Con)], and gene amplification [frd(Amp)] mutants, were selected from an sdh strain as pseudorevertants that regained the partial ability to grow aerobically on succinate. All contained increased aerobic levels of fumarate reductase activity. In frd(Oxr) mutants expression of the operon showed increased resistance to aerobic repression. Under anaerobic conditions expression of the operon became less dependent on the fnr+ gene product, a pleiotropic activator protein for genes encoding anaerobic respiratory enzymes. Exogenous fumarate, however, was still required for full induction, and repression by nitrate was undiminished. Thus, aerobic repression and anaerobic nitrate repression appear to involve separate mechanisms. In frd(Con) mutants expression of the operon became highly resistant to aerobic repression. Under anaerobic conditions expression of the operon no longer required the fnr+ gene product or exogenous fumarate and became immune to nitrate repression. In partial diploids bearing an frd(Oxr) or an frd(Con) allele and phi(frd+-lac) there was no mutual regulatory influence between the two genetic loci. Thus, the frd mutations act in cis and hence are probably in the promoter region. In frd(Amp) mutants the frd locus was amplified without significant alteration in the pattern of regulation.
PMCID: PMC213654  PMID: 3536878
20.  Multiple regulatory elements for the glpA operon encoding anaerobic glycerol-3-phosphate dehydrogenase and the glpD operon encoding aerobic glycerol-3-phosphate dehydrogenase in Escherichia coli: further characterization of respiratory control. 
Journal of Bacteriology  1990;172(1):179-184.
In Escherichia coli, sn-glycerol-3-phosphate can be oxidized by two different flavo-dehydrogenases, an anaerobic enzyme encoded by the glpACB operon and an aerobic enzyme encoded by the glpD operon. These two operons belong to the glp regulon specifying the utilization of glycerol, sn-glycerol-3-phosphate, and glycerophosphodiesters. In glpR mutant cells grown under conditions of low catabolite repression, the glpA operon is best expressed anaerobically with fumarate as the exogenous electron acceptor, whereas the glpD operon is best expressed aerobically. Increased anaerobic expression of glpA is dependent on the fnr product, a pleiotropic activator of genes involved in anaerobic respiration. In this study we found that the expression of a glpA1(Oxr) (oxygen-resistant) mutant operon, selected for increased aerobic expression, became less dependent on the FNR protein but more dependent on the cyclic AMP-catabolite gene activator protein complex mediating catabolite repression. Despite the increased aerobic expression of glpA1(Oxr), a twofold aerobic repressibility persisted. Moreover, anaerobic repression by nitrate respiration remained normal. Thus, there seems to exist a redox control apart from the FNR-mediated one. We also showed that the anaerobic repression of the glpD operon was fully relieved by mutations in either arcA (encoding a presumptive DNA recognition protein) or arcB (encoding a presumptive redox sensor protein). The arc system is known to mediate pleiotropic control of genes of aerobic function.
PMCID: PMC208416  PMID: 2403539
21.  The GO System Prevents ROS-Induced Mutagenesis and Killing in Pseudomonas aeruginosa 
FEMS microbiology letters  2009;294(1):89-96.
Inactivation of the Pseudomonas aeruginosa mutM, mutY, or mutT gene conferred a 2.4-, 17.2-, or 38.1-fold increase in spontaneous mutation frequency, respectively. Importantly, the mutY and mutT strains each displayed a robust H2O2-induced mutation frequency. In addition, the mutM, mutY, and mutT mutations severely sensitized P. aeruginosa to killing by H2O2, suggesting that these gene products act to repair one or more cytotoxic lesions in P. aeruginosa. Nucleotide sequence analysis of a fragment of the rpoB gene from rifampicin resistant mutM-, mutY-, and, mutT-deficient strains was consistent with this conclusion. These findings are discussed in terms of possible roles for mutM, mutY, and mutT in contributing to survival and mutagenesis of P. aeruginosa colonizing the airways of cystic fibrosis patients.
PMCID: PMC2863324  PMID: 19291074
Base excision repair; DNA damage; mutations; reactive oxygen species; pathogenesis
22.  Antimutator Role of DNA Glycosylase MutY in Pathogenic Neisseria Species 
Journal of Bacteriology  2005;187(8):2801-2809.
Genome alterations due to horizontal gene transfer and stress constantly generate strain on the gene pool of Neisseria meningitidis, the causative agent of meningococcal (MC) disease. The DNA glycosylase MutY of the base excision repair pathway is involved in the protection against oxidative stress. MC MutY expressed in Escherichia coli exhibited base excision activity towards DNA substrates containing A:7,8-dihydro-8-oxo-2′-deoxyguanosine and A:C mismatches. Expression in E. coli fully suppressed the elevated spontaneous mutation rate found in the E. coli mutY mutant. An assessment of MutY activity in lysates of neisserial wild-type and mutY mutant strains showed that both MC and gonococcal (GC) MutY is expressed and active in vivo. Strikingly, MC and GC mutY mutants exhibited 60- to 140-fold and 20-fold increases in mutation rates, respectively, compared to the wild-type strains. Moreover, the differences in transitions and transversions in rpoB conferring rifampin resistance observed with the wild type and mutants demonstrated that the neisserial MutY enzyme works in preventing GC→AT transversions. These findings are important in the context of models linking mutator phenotypes of disease isolates to microbial fitness.
PMCID: PMC1070393  PMID: 15805527
23.  Adenine excisional repair function of MYH protein on the adenine:8-hydroxyguanine base pair in double-stranded DNA 
Nucleic Acids Research  2000;28(24):4912-4918.
Adenine paired with 8-hydroxyguanine (oh8G), a major component of oxidative DNA damage, is excised by MYH base excision repair protein in human cells. Since repair activity of MYH protein on an A:G mismatch has also been reported, we compared the repair activity of His6-tagged MYH proteins, expressed in Spodoptera frugiperda Sf21 cells, on A:oh8G and A:G mismatches by DNA cleavage assay and gel mobility shift assay. We also compared the repair ability of type 1 mitochondrial protein with type 2 nuclear protein, as well as of polymorphic type 1-Q324 and 2-Q310 proteins with type 1-H324 and 2-H310 proteins by DNA cleavage assay and complementation assay of an Escherichia coli mutM mutY strain. In a reaction buffer with a low salt (0–50 mM) concentration, adenine DNA glycosylase activity of type 2 protein was detected on both A:oh8G and A:G substrates. However, in a reaction buffer with a 150 mM salt concentration, similar to physiological conditions, the glycosylase activity on A:G, but not on A:oh8G, was extremely reduced and the binding activity of type 2 protein for A:G, but not for A:oh8G, was proportionally reduced. The glycosylase activity on A:oh8G and the ability to suppress spontaneous mutagenesis were greater for type 2 than type 1 enzyme. There was apparently no difference in the repair activities between the two types of polymorphic MYH proteins. These results indicate that human MYH protein specifically catalyzes the glycosylase reaction on A:oh8G under physiological salt concentrations.
PMCID: PMC115236  PMID: 11121482
24.  Helicobacter pylori Genes Involved in Avoidance of Mutations Induced by 8-Oxoguanine▿  
Journal of Bacteriology  2006;188(21):7464-7469.
Chromosomal rearrangements and base substitutions contribute to the large intraspecies genetic diversity of Helicobacter pylori. Here we explored the base excision repair pathway for the highly mutagenic 8-oxo-7,8-dihydroguanine (8-oxoG), a ubiquitous form of oxidized guanine. In most organisms, 8-oxoG is removed by a specific DNA glycosylase (Fpg in bacteria or OGG1 in eukaryotes). In the case where replication of the lesion yields an A/8-oxoG base pair, a second DNA glycosylase (MutY) can excise the adenine and thus avoid the fixation of the mutation in the next round of replication. In a genetic screen for H. pylori genes complementing the hypermutator phenotype of an Escherichia coli fpg mutY strain, open reading frame HP0142, a putative MutY coding gene, was isolated. Besides its capacity to complement E. coli mutY strains, HP0142 expression resulted in a strong adenine DNA glycosylase activity in E. coli mutY extracts. Consistently, the purified protein also exhibited such an activity. Inactivation of HP0142 in H. pylori resulted in an increase in spontaneous mutation frequencies. An Mg-dependent AP (abasic site) endonuclease activity, potentially allowing the processing of the abasic site resulting from H. pylori MutY activity, was detected in H. pylori cell extracts. Disruption of HP1526, a putative xth homolog, confirmed that this gene is responsible for the AP endonuclease activity. The lack of evidence for an Fpg/OGG1 functional homolog is also discussed.
PMCID: PMC1636264  PMID: 16936028
25.  Two genetically distinct pathways for transcriptional regulation of anaerobic gene expression in Salmonella typhimurium. 
Journal of Bacteriology  1986;168(1):389-397.
Expression of the tripeptide permease gene tppB is anaerobically induced. This induction is independent of the fnr (oxrA) gene product, which is known to be required for the anaerobic induction of several respiratory enzymes. We isolated, characterized, and mapped mutations in two genes, oxrC and tppR, which prevent the anaerobic induction of tppB expression. Mutations in oxrC were highly pleiotropic, preventing the anaerobic expression of the formate dehydrogenase component of formate hydrogen lyase (fhl), a tripeptidase (pepT), and two of the three known hydrogenase isoenzymes (hydrogenases 1 and 3). On the other hand, expression of nitrate reductase, fumarate reductase, and a number of other fnr (oxrA)-dependent enzymes was not affected by mutations in oxrC. Thus, there appeared to be at least two distinct classes of anaerobically induced genes, those which required fnr for their expression and those which required oxrC. It seems that fnr-dependent enzymes perform primarily respiratory functions, whereas oxrC-dependent enzymes served fermentative or biosynthetic roles. We found the primary defect of oxrC mutants to be a deficiency in phosphoglucose isomerase activity, implying that a product of glycolysis functions as an anaerobic regulatory signal. Mutations in tppR were specific for tppB and did not affect expression of other oxrC-dependent genes. However, tppR did exhibit phenotypes other than the regulation of tppB. Both oxrC and tppR mutants were hypersensitive to the toxic NAD analog 6-aminonicotinic acid. This suggests that oxrC and tppR may play a role in the regulation of NAD biosynthesis or, alternatively, that NAD or a related nucleotide serves as the anaerobic signal for oxrC-dependent enzymes.
PMCID: PMC213463  PMID: 3531176

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