Plant lectins, especially those purified from species of the Leguminosae family, represent the best-studied group of carbohydrate-binding proteins. Lectins purified from seeds of the Diocleinae subtribe exhibit a high degree of sequence identity notwithstanding that they show very distinct biological activities. Two main factors have been related to this feature: variance in key residues influencing the carbohydrate-binding site geometry and differences in the pH-dependent oligomeric state profile. In this work, we have isolated a lectin from Canavalia boliviana (Cbol) and solved its x-ray crystal structure in the unbound form and in complex with the carbohydrates Man(α1-3)Man(α1-O)Me, Man(α1-4)Man(α1-O)Me and 5-bromo-4-chloro-3-indolyl-α-D-mannose. We evaluated its oligomerization profile at different pH values using Small Angle X-ray Scattering and compared it to that of Concanavalin A. Based on predicted pKa-shifts of amino acids in the subunit interfaces we devised a model for the dimer-tetramer equilibrium phenomena of these proteins. Additionally, we demonstrated Cbol anti-inflammatory properties and further characterized them using in vivo and in vitro models.
The purification, crystallization and MS analysis of a natural surfactant protein from the frog L. vastus are described.
Lv-ranaspumin is a natural surfactant protein with a molecular mass of 23.5 kDa which was isolated from the foam nest of the frog Leptodactylus vastus. Only a partial amino-acid sequence is available for this protein and it shows it to be distinct from any protein sequence reported to date. The protein was purified from the natural source by ion-exchange and size-exclusion chromatography and was crystallized by sitting-drop vapour diffusion using the PEG/Ion screen at 293 K. A complete data set was collected to 3.5 Å resolution. The crystal belonged to the orthorhombic space group P212121, with unit-cell parameters a = 51.96, b = 89.99, c = 106.00 Å. Assuming the presence of two molecules in the asymmetric unit, the solvent content was estimated to be 54%.
Leptodactylus vastus; Lv-ranaspumin; surfactant proteins
The expression, purification and crystallization of human dipeptidyl peptidase 10, a component of voltage-gated potassium channels, is described.
Dipeptidyl peptidase 10 (DPP10, DPPY) is an inactive peptidase associated with voltage-gated potassium channels, acting as a modulator of their electrophysiological properties, cell-surface expression and subcellular localization. Because potassium channels are important disease targets, biochemical and structural characterization of their interaction partners was sought. DPP10 was cloned and expressed using an insect-cell system and the protein was purified via His-tag affinity and size-exclusion chromatography. Crystals obtained by the sitting-drop method were orthorhombic, belonging to space group P212121 with unit-cell parameters a = 80.91, b = 143.73, c = 176.25 Å. A single solution with two molecules in the asymmetric unit was found using the structure of DPP6 (also called DPPX; PDB entry 1xfd) as the search model in a molecular replacement protocol.
dipeptidyl peptidase 10; voltage-gated potassium channels
Proline-specific dipeptidyl peptidases (DPPs) are emerging targets for drug development. DPP4 inhibitors are approved in many countries, and other dipeptidyl peptidases are often referred to as DPP4 activity- and/or structure-homologues (DASH). Members of the DASH family have overlapping substrate specificities, and, even though they share low sequence identity, therapeutic or clinical cross-reactivity is a concern. Here, we report the structure of human DPP7 and its complex with a selective inhibitor Dab-Pip (L-2,4-diaminobutyryl-piperidinamide) and compare it with that of DPP4. Both enzymes share a common catalytic domain (α/β-hydrolase). The catalytic pocket is located in the interior of DPP7, deep inside the cleft between the two domains. Substrates might access the active site via a narrow tunnel. The DPP7 catalytic triad is completely conserved and comprises Ser162, Asp418 and His443 (corresponding to Ser630, Asp708 and His740 in DPP4), while other residues lining the catalytic pockets differ considerably. The “specificity domains” are structurally also completely different exhibiting a β-propeller fold in DPP4 compared to a rare, completely helical fold in DPP7. Comparing the structures of DPP7 and DPP4 allows the design of specific inhibitors and thus the development of less cross-reactive drugs. Furthermore, the reported DPP7 structures shed some light onto the evolutionary relationship of prolyl-specific peptidases through the analysis of the architectural organization of their domains.
Monoacylglycerol lipases (MGLs) catalyse the hydrolysis of monoacylglycerol into free fatty acid and glycerol. MGLs have been identified throughout all genera of life and have adopted different substrate specificities depending on their physiological role. In humans, MGL plays an integral part in lipid metabolism affecting energy homeostasis, signalling processes and cancer cell progression. In bacteria, MGLs degrade short-chain monoacylglycerols which are otherwise toxic to the organism. We report the crystal structures of MGL from the bacterium Bacillus sp. H257 (bMGL) in its free form at 1.2 Å and in complex with phenylmethylsulfonyl fluoride at 1.8 Å resolution. In both structures, bMGL adopts an α/β hydrolase fold with a cap in an open conformation. Access to the active site residues, which were unambiguously identified from the protein structure, is facilitated by two different channels. The larger channel constitutes the highly hydrophobic substrate binding pocket with enough room to accommodate monoacylglycerol. The other channel is rather small and resembles the proposed glycerol exit hole in human MGL. Molecular dynamics simulation of bMGL yielded open and closed states of the entrance channel and the glycerol exit hole. Despite differences in the number of residues, secondary structure elements, and low sequence identity in the cap region, this first structure of a bacterial MGL reveals striking structural conservation of the overall cap architecture in comparison with human MGL. Thus it provides insight into the structural conservation of the cap amongst MGLs throughout evolution and provides a framework for rationalising substrate specificities in each organism.
► First crystal structure of monoacylglycerol lipase from bacterial species. ► Small angle X-ray scattering shows that the protein is a monomer in solution. ► A large hydrophobic channel enables access of the substrate to the active site. ► Molecular dynamic simulations reveal open and closed states of the cap region. ► The cap architecture is conserved on a structural but not on a sequence level.
MGL, monoacylglycerol lipase; bMGL, monoacylglycerol lipase from Bacillus sp. H257; hMGL, human monoacylglycerol lipase; PMSF, phenylmethylsulfonyl fluoride; SAXS, small angle X-ray scattering; RMSD, root mean square deviation; SDS-PAGE, sodium dodecyl sulphate polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis; Monoacylglycerol lipase; Open conformation; Evolutionary conservation; X-ray crystallography; Molecular dynamics simulation; Small-angle X-ray scattering
Canavalia boliviana lectin (Cbol) was purified using a Sephadex G-50 column and crystallized in the presence of X-Man by hanging-drop vapour diffusion at 293 K. After optimization, crystals suitable for diffraction were obtained using 0.1 M HEPES pH 7.5 and 3.0 M sodium formate.
Plant lectins are the most studied group of carbohydrate-binding proteins. Despite the high similarity between the members of the Diocleinae subtribe (Leguminosae) group, they present differing biological activities. Canavalia boliviana lectin (Cbol) was purified using a Sephadex G-50 column and crystallized in the presence of X-Man by hanging-drop vapour diffusion at 293 K. After optimization, crystals suitable for diffraction were obtained under the condition 0.1 M HEPES pH 7.5 and 3.0 M sodium formate. The crystal belonged to the monoclinic space group C2, with unit-cell parameters a = 126.70, b = 66.64, c = 64.99 Å, α = 90.0, β = 120.8, γ = 90.0°. Assuming the presence of a dimer in the asymmetric unit, the solvent content was estimated to be about 46%. A complete data set was collected at 1.5 Å resolution.
lectins; Canavalia boliviana Piper
The crystallization and preliminary X-ray data of Canavalia gladiata lectin (CGL) and C. maritima lectin (CML) complexed with Man(α1-2)Man(α1)OMe, Man(α1-3)Man(α1)OMe and Man(α1-4)Man(α1)OMe in two crystal forms [the complexes with Man(α1-3)Man(α1)OMe and Man(α1-4)Man(α1)OMe crystallized in space group P32 and those with Man(α1-2)Man(α1)OMe crystallized in space group I222], which differed from those of the native proteins (P21212 for CML and C222 for CGL), are reported.
Studying the interactions between lectins and sugars is important in order to explain the differences observed in the biological activities presented by the highly similar proteins of the Diocleinae subtribe. Here, the crystallization and preliminary X-ray data of Canavalia gladiata lectin (CGL) and C. maritima lectin (CML) complexed with Man(α1-2)Man(α1)OMe, Man(α1-3)Man(α1)OMe and Man(α1-4)Man(α1)OMe in two crystal forms [the complexes with Man(α1-3)Man(α1)OMe and Man(α1-4)Man(α1)OMe crystallized in space group P32 and those with Man(α1-2)Man(α1)OMe crystallized in space group I222], which differed from those of the native proteins (P21212 for CML and C222 for CGL), are reported. The crystal complexes of ConA-like lectins with Man(α1-4)Man(α1)OMe are reported here for the first time.
lectin–sugar interactions; Dioocleinae lectins
D. rostrata lectin was crystallized by hanging-drop vapor diffusion. The crystal belongs to the orthorhombic space group I222 and diffracted to 1.87 Å resolution.
Lectins from the Diocleinae subtribe (Leguminosae) are highly similar proteins that promote various biological activities with distinctly differing potencies. The structural basis for this experimental data is not yet fully understood. Dioclea rostrata lectin was purified and crystallized by hanging-drop vapour diffusion at 293 K. The crystal belongs to the orthorhombic space group I222, with unit-cell parameters a = 61.51, b = 88.22, c = 87.76 Å. Assuming the presence of one monomer per asymmetric unit, the solvent content was estimated to be about 47.9%. A complete data set was collected at 1.87 Å resolution.
lectins; Dioclea rostrata
Crystals of P. platycephala chintinase/lectin (PPL-2) belong to the orthorhombic space group P212121, with unit-cell parameters a = 55.19, b = 59.95, c = 76.60 Å. The preliminary cystal structure of PPL-2 was solved at a resolution of 1.73 Å by molecular replacement, presenting a correlation coefficient of 0.558 and an R factor of 0.439.
A chitin-binding protein named PPL-2 was purified from Parkia platycephala seeds and crystallized. Crystals belong to the orthorhombic space group P212121, with unit-cell parameters a = 55.19, b = 59.95, c = 76.60 Å, and grew over several days at 293 K using the hanging-drop method. Using synchrotron radiation, a complete structural data set was collected to 1.73 Å resolution. The preliminary crystal structure of PPL-2, determined by molecular replacement, presents a correlation coefficient of 0.558 and an R factor of 0.439. Crystallographic refinement is in progress.
chitin-binding proteins; chitinases; Parkia platycephala; lectins
Lectins are mainly described as simple carbohydrate-binding proteins. Previous studies have tried to identify other binding sites, which possible recognize plant hormones, secondary metabolites, and isolated amino acid residues. We report the crystal structure of a lectin isolated from Canavalia gladiata seeds (CGL), describing a new binding pocket, which may be related to pathogen resistance activity in ConA-like lectins; a site where a non-protein amino-acid, α-aminobutyric acid (Abu), is bound.
The overall structure of native CGL and complexed with α-methyl-mannoside and Abu have been refined at 2.3 Å and 2.31 Å resolution, respectively. Analysis of the electron density maps of the CGL structure shows clearly the presence of Abu, which was confirmed by mass spectrometry.
The presence of Abu in a plant lectin structure strongly indicates the ability of lectins on carrying secondary metabolites. Comparison of the amino acids composing the site with other legume lectins revealed that this site is conserved, providing an evidence of the biological relevance of this site. This new action of lectins strengthens their role in defense mechanisms in plants.