ResearchPad - enzyme-chemistry https://www.researchpad.co Default RSS Feed en-us © 2020 Newgen KnowledgeWorks <![CDATA[Methamphetamine administration increases hepatic CYP1A2 but not CYP3A activity in female guinea pigs]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/elastic_article_7848 Methamphetamine use has increased over the past decade and the first use of methamphetamine is most often when women are of reproductive age. Methamphetamine accumulates in the liver; however, little is known about the effect of methamphetamine use on hepatic drug metabolism. Methamphetamine was administered on 3 occassions to female Dunkin Hartley guinea pigs of reproductive age, mimicking recreational drug use. Low doses of test drugs caffeine and midazolam were administered after the third dose of methamphetamine to assess the functional activity of cytochrome P450 1A2 and 3A, respectively. Real-time quantitative polymerase chain reaction was used to quantify the mRNA expression of factors involved in glucocorticoid signalling, inflammation, oxidative stress and drug transporters. This study showed that methamphetamine administration decreased hepatic CYP1A2 mRNA expression, but increased CYP1A2 enzyme activity. Methamphetamine had no effect on CYP3A enzyme activity. In addition, we found that methamphetamine may also result in changes in glucocorticoid bioavailability, as we found a decrease in 11β-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase 1 mRNA expression, which converts inactive cortisone into active cortisol. This study has shown that methamphetamine administration has the potential to alter drug metabolism via the CYP1A2 metabolic pathway in female guinea pigs. This may have clinical implications for drug dosing in female methamphetamine users of reproductive age.

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<![CDATA[Toward precision prescribing for methadone: Determinants of methadone deposition]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/N51499fe4-a854-40f2-ac0e-5bd2b114360f

Background

Despite the World Health Organization listing methadone as an essential medication, effective dose selection is challenging, especially in racial and ethnic minority populations. Subtherapeutic doses can result in withdrawal symptoms while supratherapeutic doses can result in overdose and death. Although CYP3A4 was conventionally considered the principal methadone metabolizing enzyme, more recent data have identified CYP2B6 as the principal enzyme. CYP2B6 has ethnically-associated polymorphisms that affect the metabolic rate. Our objective was to investigate the effects of genetic and nongenetic factors on methadone metabolism.

Methods

We measured trough plasma methadone levels in 100 participants with opioid use disorder. We assessed methadone metabolism by calculating the metabolite ratio (major metabolite: 2-ethylidene-1,5-dimethyl-3,3-diphenylpyrrolidine [EDDP] divided by methadone concentration). We assessed hepatic fibrosis and steatosis by transient elastography and CYP2B6 alleles, principally responsible for methadone metabolism. Mixed effects models modeled the data in 97 participants.

Results

Participants were largely male (58%), minority (61% African American) and non-Hispanic (68%). Forty percent were HCV mono-infected, 40% were uninfected, and 20% were HCV/HIV co-infected. Female sex had significant effects on (R)- and (S)-methadone metabolism (p = 0.016 and p = 0.044, respectively). CYP2B6 loss of function (LOF) alleles significantly affected (S)-methadone metabolism (p = 0.012). Body mass index (BMI) significantly affected (R)-methadone metabolism (p = 0.034). Methadone metabolism appeared to be lower in males, in individuals with LOF alleles, and elevated BMI.

Conclusions

Genetic analysis, especially in minority populations, is essential to delivering individualized treatments. Although the principal methadone metabolizing enzyme remains controversial, our results suggest that sex, CYP2B6 genotype, and BMI should be incorporated into multivariate models to create methadone dosing algorithms. Methadone dosing algorithms should facilitate medication delivery, improve patient satisfaction, and diminish overdose potential.

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<![CDATA[Reprogramming of Trypanosoma cruzi metabolism triggered by parasite interaction with the host cell extracellular matrix]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c648d19d5eed0c484c81fa6

Trypanosoma cruzi, the etiological agent of Chagas’ disease, affects 8 million people predominantly living in socioeconomic underdeveloped areas. T. cruzi trypomastigotes (Ty), the classical infective stage, interact with the extracellular matrix (ECM), an obligatory step before invasion of almost all mammalian cells in different tissues. Here we have characterized the proteome and phosphoproteome of T. cruzi trypomastigotes upon interaction with ECM (MTy) and the data are available via ProteomeXchange with identifier PXD010970. Proteins involved with metabolic processes (such as the glycolytic pathway), kinases, flagellum and microtubule related proteins, transport-associated proteins and RNA/DNA binding elements are highly represented in the pool of proteins modified by phosphorylation. Further, important metabolic switches triggered by this interaction with ECM were indicated by decreases in the phosphorylation of hexokinase, phosphofructokinase, fructose-2,6-bisphosphatase, phosphoglucomutase, phosphoglycerate kinase in MTy. Concomitantly, a decrease in the pyruvate and lactate and an increase of glucose and succinate contents were detected by GC-MS. These observations led us to focus on the changes in the glycolytic pathway upon binding of the parasite to the ECM. Inhibition of hexokinase, pyruvate kinase and lactate dehydrogenase activities in MTy were observed and this correlated with the phosphorylation levels of the respective enzymes. Putative kinases involved in protein phosphorylation altered upon parasite incubation with ECM were suggested by in silico analysis. Taken together, our results show that in addition to cytoskeletal changes and protease activation, a reprogramming of the trypomastigote metabolism is triggered by the interaction of the parasite with the ECM prior to cell invasion and differentiation into amastigotes, the multiplicative intracellular stage of T. cruzi in the vertebrate host.

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<![CDATA[Pharmacokinetics of morphine in encephalopathic neonates treated with therapeutic hypothermia]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c6f14b9d5eed0c48467a745

Objective

Morphine is a commonly used drug in encephalopathic neonates treated with therapeutic hypothermia after perinatal asphyxia. Pharmacokinetics and optimal dosing of morphine in this population are largely unknown. The objective of this study was to describe pharmacokinetics of morphine and its metabolites morphine-3-glucuronide and morphine-6-glucuronide in encephalopathic neonates treated with therapeutic hypothermia and to develop pharmacokinetics based dosing guidelines for this population.

Study design

Term and near-term encephalopathic neonates treated with therapeutic hypothermia and receiving morphine were included in two multicenter cohort studies between 2008–2010 (SHIVER) and 2010–2014 (PharmaCool). Data were collected during hypothermia and rewarming, including blood samples for quantification of morphine and its metabolites. Parental informed consent was obtained for all participants.

Results

244 patients (GA mean (sd) 39.8 (1.6) weeks, BW mean (sd) 3,428 (613) g, male 61.5%) were included. Morphine clearance was reduced under hypothermia (33.5°C) by 6.89%/°C (95% CI 5.37%/°C– 8.41%/°C, p<0.001) and metabolite clearance by 4.91%/°C (95% CI 3.53%/°C– 6.22%/°C, p<0.001) compared to normothermia (36.5°C). Simulations showed that a loading dose of 50 μg/kg followed by continuous infusion of 5 μg/kg/h resulted in morphine plasma concentrations in the desired range (between 10 and 40 μg/L) during hypothermia.

Conclusions

Clearance of morphine and its metabolites in neonates is affected by therapeutic hypothermia. The regimen suggested by the simulations will be sufficient in the majority of patients. However, due to the large interpatient variability a higher dose might be necessary in individual patients to achieve the desired effect.

Trial registration

www.trialregister.nl NTR2529.

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<![CDATA[Rapid and sensitive detection of NADPH via mBFP-mediated enhancement of its fluorescence]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c6b2618d5eed0c4842892e3

The reduced form of nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide phosphate (NADPH) functions as a reducing agent involved in many biosynthetic and antioxidant reactions in cells. Therefore, a lots of detection or assaying method of this cofactor are developed and used broadly in various research and application fields. These detection or assay tools, however, have often some problems, such as the low sensitivity, susceptibility to environmental interference and time-consuming pretreatment steps, remaining hurdle to successful quantification of NADPH or its derivatives accurately and immediately. Herein, we present a rapid (assay time < 30 s) and sensitive (detection limit < 2 pmol) detection method of NADPH using metagenome-derived blue fluorescent protein (mBFP), a protein capable of significantly enhancing NADPH fluorescence upon binding to this cofactor. Our method takes advantage of the high specificity of mBFP to NADPH and the immediate fluorescence enhancement upon the addition of mBFP to a solution of interest containing NADPH. We can apply this detection scheme to directly quantitative assessment of NADP(H)-dependent enzyme activities in-vitro, and further accessed to quantitative assay of other nicotine amide cofactors, such as NAD+ and NADH, by coupling assay using NAD(H) kinase. Thus, our method enabled us to quantitatively assess the activity of nicotinamide cofactor-associated enzymes in both bacterial and human cell lysates.

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<![CDATA[Pyruvate Kinase M2 serves as blockade for nucleosome repositioning and abrogates Chd7 remodeling activity]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c6730dfd5eed0c484f3825f

Pyruvate Kinase M2 (PKM2) mediates metabolic reshuffling and is ubiquitously upregulated in several cancer types. The non-metabolic function of PKM2 as key nuclear kinase and modulator of gene expression is instrumental in cancer progression and tumorigenesis. Here, we attempt to discern the non-canonical function of PKM2 as an epigenetic modulator and the underlying implication of this activity. Using 5’-FAM labelled reconstituted mononucleosome we have shown that PKM2 interacts with the complex through Histone H3 and possibly obstruct the access to DNA binding factors. Subsequently, the interaction negatively impacts the ATP dependent remodeling activity of Chromodomain Helicase DNA binding protein-7 (Chd7). Chd7 remodeling activity is required to ameliorate DNA damage and is crucial to genome stability. Our study shows that PKM2 blocks the Chd7 mediated sliding of nucleosome. It can be conjectured that stalling Chd7 may lead to impaired DNA damage and increased genomic instability. We propose a mechanism in which PKM2 negatively regulate nucleosome repositioning in chromatin and may exacerbate cancer by altering the nucleosome architecture. This research is imperative to our understanding of how altered cancer metabolism can potentially modulate the gene expression and sustain incessant proliferation by tweaking the chromatin topography.

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<![CDATA[Inhibition of the Staphylococcus aureus c-di-AMP cyclase DacA by direct interaction with the phosphoglucosamine mutase GlmM]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c50c481d5eed0c4845e8843

c-di-AMP is an important second messenger molecule that plays a pivotal role in regulating fundamental cellular processes, including osmotic and cell wall homeostasis in many Gram-positive organisms. In the opportunistic human pathogen Staphylococcus aureus, c-di-AMP is produced by the membrane-anchored DacA enzyme. Inactivation of this enzyme leads to a growth arrest under standard laboratory growth conditions and a re-sensitization of methicillin-resistant S. aureus (MRSA) strains to ß-lactam antibiotics. The gene coding for DacA is part of the conserved three-gene dacA/ybbR/glmM operon that also encodes the proposed DacA regulator YbbR and the essential phosphoglucosamine mutase GlmM, which is required for the production of glucosamine-1-phosphate, an early intermediate of peptidoglycan synthesis. These three proteins are thought to form a complex in vivo and, in this manner, help to fine-tune the cellular c-di-AMP levels. To further characterize this important regulatory complex, we conducted a comprehensive structural and functional analysis of the S. aureus DacA and GlmM enzymes by determining the structures of the S. aureus GlmM enzyme and the catalytic domain of DacA. Both proteins were found to be dimers in solution as well as in the crystal structures. Further site-directed mutagenesis, structural and enzymatic studies showed that multiple DacA dimers need to interact for enzymatic activity. We also show that DacA and GlmM form a stable complex in vitro and that S. aureus GlmM, but not Escherichia coli or Pseudomonas aeruginosa GlmM, acts as a strong inhibitor of DacA function without the requirement of any additional cellular factor. Based on Small Angle X-ray Scattering (SAXS) data, a model of the complex revealed that GlmM likely inhibits DacA by masking the active site of the cyclase and preventing higher oligomer formation. Together these results provide an important mechanistic insight into how c-di-AMP production can be regulated in the cell.

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<![CDATA[Extreme pathway analysis reveals the organizing rules of metabolic regulation]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c63394dd5eed0c484ae646f

Cellular systems shift metabolic states by adjusting gene expression and enzyme activities to adapt to physiological and environmental changes. Biochemical and genetic studies are identifying how metabolic regulation affects the selection of metabolic phenotypes. However, how metabolism influences its regulatory architecture still remains unexplored. We present a new method of extreme pathway analysis (the minimal set of conically independent metabolic pathways) to deduce regulatory structures from pure pathway information. Applying our method to metabolic networks of human red blood cells and Escherichia coli, we shed light on how metabolic regulation are organized by showing which reactions within metabolic networks are more prone to transcriptional or allosteric regulation. Applied to a human genome-scale metabolic system, our method detects disease-associated reactions. Thus, our study deepens the understanding of the organizing principle of cellular metabolic regulation and may contribute to metabolic engineering, synthetic biology, and disease treatment.

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<![CDATA[The wood decay fungus Cerrena unicolor adjusts its metabolism to grow on various types of wood and light conditions]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c633975d5eed0c484ae67e0

Cerrena unicolor is a wood-degrading basidiomycete with ecological and biotechnological importance. Comprehensive Biolog-based analysis was performed to assess the metabolic capabilities and sensitivity to chemicals of C. unicolor FCL139 growing in various sawdust substrates and light conditions. The metabolic preferences of the fungus towards utilization of specific substrates were shown to be correlated with the sawdust medium applied for fungus growth and the light conditions. The highest catabolic activity of C. unicolor was observed after fungus precultivation on birch and ash sawdust media. The fungus growing in the dark showed the highest metabolic activity which was indicated by capacity to utilize a broad spectrum of compounds and the decomposition of 74/95 of the carbon sources. In all the culture light conditions, p-hydroxyphenylacetic acid was the most readily metabolized compound. The greatest tolerance to chemicals was also observed during C. unicolor growth in darkness. The fungus was the most sensitive to nitrogen compounds and antibiotics, but more resistant to chelators. Comparative analysis of C. unicolor and selected wood-decay fungi from different taxonomic and ecological groups revealed average catabolic activity of the fungus. However, C. unicolor showed outstanding capabilities to catabolize salicin and arbutin. The obtained picture of C. unicolor metabolism showed that the fungus abilities to decompose woody plant material are influenced by various environmental factors.

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<![CDATA[Cell type-specific differences in redox regulation and proliferation after low UVA doses]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c57e6d0d5eed0c484ef3ec4

Ultraviolet A (UVA) radiation is harmful for living organisms but in low doses may stimulate cell proliferation. Our aim was to examine the relationships between exposure to different low UVA doses, cellular proliferation, and changes in cellular reactive oxygen species levels. In human colon cancer (HCT116) and melanoma (Me45) cells exposed to UVA doses comparable to environmental, the highest doses (30–50 kJ/m2) reduced clonogenic potential but some lower doses (1 and 10 kJ/m2) induced proliferation. This effect was cell type and dose specific. In both cell lines the levels of reactive oxygen species and nitric oxide fluctuated with dynamics which were influenced differently by UVA; in Me45 cells decreased proliferation accompanied the changes in the dynamics of H2O2 while in HCT116 cells those of superoxide. Genes coding for proteins engaged in redox systems were expressed differently in each cell line; transcripts for thioredoxin, peroxiredoxin and glutathione peroxidase showed higher expression in HCT116 cells whereas those for glutathione transferases and copper chaperone were more abundant in Me45 cells. We conclude that these two cell types utilize different pathways for regulating their redox status. Many mechanisms engaged in maintaining cellular redox balance have been described. Here we show that the different cellular responses to a stimulus such as a specific dose of UVA may be consequences of the use of different redox control pathways. Assays of superoxide and hydrogen peroxide level changes after exposure to UVA may clarify mechanisms of cellular redox regulation and help in understanding responses to stressing factors.

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<![CDATA[Cellular determinants of metabolite concentration ranges]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c536be4d5eed0c484a4947e

Cellular functions are shaped by reaction networks whose dynamics are determined by the concentrations of underlying components. However, cellular mechanisms ensuring that a component’s concentration resides in a given range remain elusive. We present network properties which suffice to identify components whose concentration ranges can be efficiently computed in mass-action metabolic networks. We show that the derived ranges are in excellent agreement with simulations from a detailed kinetic metabolic model of Escherichia coli. We demonstrate that the approach can be used with genome-scale metabolic models to arrive at predictions concordant with measurements from Escherichia coli under different growth scenarios. By application to 14 genome-scale metabolic models from diverse species, our approach specifies the cellular determinants of concentration ranges that can be effectively employed to make predictions for a variety of biotechnological and medical applications.

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<![CDATA[Metabolic consequences of discretionary fortified beverage consumption containing excessive vitamin B levels in adolescents]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c61b7d4d5eed0c484938015

Over the past decade, there has been a substantial increase in the number of beverage products containing added vitamins and minerals. Often viewed as a healthier choice by consumers, the metabolic impacts of excessive vitamin consumption are relatively unknown, especially in children. The aim of this study was to examine the effects of a widely available, vitamin fortified beverage (5h Energy Decaffeinated) on insulin sensitivity, metabolic hormones and serum metabolomic responses in adolescents. Twenty adolescents (13-19y, 10M/10F) completed two randomized trials, consuming either coloured water as placebo (PL) or a vitamin fortified, sugar free beverage (FB, 1.5ml/kg) 40min prior to a modified oral glucose tolerance test (OGTT, 1.75g/kg glucose). Samples were collected at baseline and at 30, 45, 60, 90 and 120min during the OGTT. No differences in blood glucose response were observed between the treatments. However, compared to PL, postprandial plasma C-peptide and insulin excursion was significantly greater with FB, resulting in a 28% decline in the insulin sensitivity index. This was accompanied by elevated GLP-1, glucagon and PYY responses with FB compared to PL. Serum metabolomics (1H-NMR) analysis also revealed perturbations to vitamin B-linked one carbon metabolism flux with FB consumption that became more pronounced over time. These included a transient reduction in homocysteine flux accompanied by increases in betaine, vitamin B6, vitamin B12, choline, folate and taurine. Although these impacts are likely short-lived, results show that beverages fortified with excessive amounts of vitamins are not metabolically inert, but likely result in greater insulin secretion, differential gut hormone secretion and elevated one-carbon flux to process the excessive vitamin loads.

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<![CDATA[The influence of concomitant antiepileptic drugs on lamotrigine serum concentrations in Northwest Chinese Han population with epilepsy]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c478ca5d5eed0c484bd3a7f

Objective

The aims of this study were to identify the influencing factors such as gender, age, dose and combinations of other antiepileptic drugs (AEDs), especially in triple combinations on the pharmacokinetic of Lamotrigine (LTG) in epilepsy patients of Northwest Chinese Han population.

Methods

Data of the LTG concentration and clinical information were analyzed retrospectively from a therapeutic drug monitoring (TDM) database at the Clinical Pharmacy Laboratory of Xi’an Central Hospital between January 1, 2016 and January 1, 2018. The independent-sample t-test, one-way ANOVA analysis and Bonferroni and Tamhane T3 post-hoc test, the stepwise multivariate regression analysis were adopted by IBM SPSS, version 22.0.

Results

226 serum samples met the inclusion criteria and were evaluated. The mean LTG serum concentration was 5.48±3.83 μg/mL. There were no gender differences (P = 0.64), and there were no significant effects by age on LTG serum concentration after age stratification (3–14 years old, 14-45 years old, 45–59 years old) (P = 0.05). Multiple regression analysis showed that the daily LTG dose and co-administration of other AEDs significantly affected LTG serum concentrations. Combination with enzyme-inducer AEDs, the mean steady-state LTG concentration could be decreased by 30.73% compared with LTG monotherapy. Among enzyme-inducer AEDs, particularly strong inducer Carbamazepine (CBZ) could decrease the mean LTG concentration by 53.65%, but weak inducer AEDs such as Oxcarbazepine (OXC) and Topiramate (TPM) had no effect, Valproic acid (VPA) could increase the mean LTG concentration by 93.95%, and the inducer only partially compensated for the inhibitory effect of VPA in triple combination.

Conclusions

There were no significant gender and age effects, but the LTG daily dose and co-administration of other AEDs significantly affected LTG serum concentration. Combination with enzyme-inducer AEDs, especially CBZ could significantly decrease LTG serum concentrations, VPA could significantly increase LTG serum concentrations, and the inducer only partially compensated for the inhibitory effect of VPA in triple combination. In the clinical setting, these findings can help to estimate LTG concentrations and adjust dosage and evaluate adverse drug reactions.

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<![CDATA[To B12 or not to B12: Five questions on the role of cobalamin in host-microbial interactions]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c37b7b6d5eed0c484490a34 ]]> <![CDATA[Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) present in ambient urban dust drive proinflammatory T cell and dendritic cell responses via the aryl hydrocarbon receptor (AHR) in vitro]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c26976ad5eed0c48470f75d

Atmospheric particulate matter (PM) is a complex component of air pollution that is a composed of inorganic and organic constituents. The chemically-extracted organic fraction (OF) of PM excludes inorganics but retains most organic constituents like polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs). PAHs are ubiquitous environmental toxicants and known aryl hydrocarbon receptor (AHR) ligands. The AHR is a ligand activated transcription factor that responds to endogenous ligands and exogenous ligands including PAHs. Activation of the AHR leads to upregulation of cytochrome P450 (CYP) metabolizing enzymes which are important for the biotransformation of toxicants to less toxic, or in the case of PAHs, more toxic intermediates. Additionally, the AHR plays an important role in balancing regulatory and effector T cell responses. This study aimed to determine whether PAHs present in PM aggravate inflammation by driving inflammatory T cell and dendritic cell (DC) responses and their mechanism of action. This study tests the hypothesis that PAHs present in PM activate the AHR and alter the immune balance shifting from regulation to inflammation. To test this, the effects of SRM1649b OF on T cell differentiation and DC function were measured in vitro. SRM1649b OF enhanced Th17 differentiation in an AHR and CYP-dependent manner and increased the percent of IFNγ positive DCs in an AHR-dependent manner. SRM1649b PAH mixtures enhanced Th17 differentiation in an AHR-dependent but CYP-independent manner and increased the percent of IFNγ positive DCs. Cumulatively, these results suggest that PAHs present in PM are active components that contribute to immune responses in both T cells and BMDCs through the AHR and CYP metabolism. Understanding the role of AHR and CYP metabolism of PAHs in immune cells after PM exposure will shed light on new targets that will shift the immune balance from inflammation to regulation.

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<![CDATA[A comprehensive ensemble model for comparing the allosteric effect of ordered and disordered proteins]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c0ed755d5eed0c484f13f37

Intrinsically disordered proteins/regions (IDPs/IDRs) are prevalent in allosteric regulation. It was previously thought that intrinsic disorder is favorable for maximizing the allosteric coupling. Here, we propose a comprehensive ensemble model to compare the roles of both order-order transition and disorder-order transition in allosteric effect. It is revealed that the MWC pathway (order-order transition) has a higher probability than the EAM pathway (disorder-order transition) in allostery, suggesting a complicated role of IDPs/IDRs in regulatory proteins. In addition, an analytic formula for the maximal allosteric coupling response is obtained, which shows that too stable or too unstable state is unfavorable to endow allostery, and is thus helpful for rational design of allosteric drugs.

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<![CDATA[Mass spectrometric analysis of purine de novo biosynthesis intermediates]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c18133cd5eed0c4847748c8

Purines are essential molecules for all forms of life. In addition to constituting a backbone of DNA and RNA, purines play roles in many metabolic pathways, such as energy utilization, regulation of enzyme activity, and cell signaling. The supply of purines is provided by two pathways: the salvage pathway and de novo synthesis. Although purine de novo synthesis (PDNS) activity varies during the cell cycle, this pathway represents an important source of purines, especially for rapidly dividing cells. A method for the detailed study of PDNS is lacking for analytical reasons (sensitivity) and because of the commercial unavailability of the compounds. The aim was to fully describe the mass spectrometric fragmentation behavior of newly synthesized PDNS-related metabolites and develop an analytical method. Except for four initial ribotide PDNS intermediates that preferentially lost water or phosphate or cleaved the forming base of the purine ring, all the other metabolites studied cleaved the glycosidic bond in the first fragmentation stage. Fragmentation was possible in the third to sixth stages. A liquid chromatography-high-resolution mass spectrometric method was developed and applied in the analysis of CRISPR-Cas9 genome-edited HeLa cells deficient in the individual enzymatic steps of PDNS and the salvage pathway. The identities of the newly synthesized intermediates of PDNS were confirmed by comparing the fragmentation patterns of the synthesized metabolites with those produced by cells (formed under pathological conditions of known and theoretically possible defects of PDNS). The use of stable isotope incorporation allowed the confirmation of fragmentation mechanisms and provided data for future fluxomic experiments. This method may find uses in the diagnosis of PDNS disorders, the investigation of purinosome formation, cancer research, enzyme inhibition studies, and other applications.

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<![CDATA[An efficient proteome-wide strategy for discovery and characterization of cellular nucleotide-protein interactions]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c12cef8d5eed0c484913c3b

Metabolite-protein interactions define the output of metabolic pathways and regulate many cellular processes. Although diseases are often characterized by distortions in metabolic processes, efficient means to discover and study such interactions directly in cells have been lacking. A stringent implementation of proteome-wide Cellular Thermal Shift Assay (CETSA) was developed and applied to key cellular nucleotides, where previously experimentally confirmed protein-nucleotide interactions were well recaptured. Many predicted, but never experimentally confirmed, as well as novel protein-nucleotide interactions were discovered. Interactions included a range of different protein families where nucleotides serve as substrates, products, co-factors or regulators. In cells exposed to thymidine, a limiting precursor for DNA synthesis, both dose- and time-dependence of the intracellular binding events for sequentially generated thymidine metabolites were revealed. Interactions included known cancer targets in deoxyribonucleotide metabolism as well as novel interacting proteins. This stringent CETSA based strategy will be applicable for a wide range of metabolites and will therefore greatly facilitate the discovery and studies of interactions and specificities of the many metabolites in human cells that remain uncharacterized.

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<![CDATA[Metabolic models and gene essentiality data reveal essential and conserved metabolism in prokaryotes]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5bf86f5ed5eed0c48405a937

Essential metabolic reactions are shaping constituents of metabolic networks, enabling viable and distinct phenotypes across diverse life forms. Here we analyse and compare modelling predictions of essential metabolic functions with experimental data and thereby identify core metabolic pathways in prokaryotes. Simulations of 15 manually curated genome-scale metabolic models were integrated with 36 large-scale gene essentiality datasets encompassing a wide variety of species of bacteria and archaea. Conservation of metabolic genes was estimated by analysing 79 representative genomes from all the branches of the prokaryotic tree of life. We find that essentiality patterns reflect phylogenetic relations both for modelling and experimental data, which correlate highly at the pathway level. Genes that are essential for several species tend to be highly conserved as opposed to non-essential genes which may be conserved or not. The tRNA-charging module is highlighted as ancestral and with high centrality in the networks, followed closely by cofactor metabolism, pointing to an early information processing system supplied by organic cofactors. The results, which point to model improvements and also indicate faults in the experimental data, should be relevant to the study of centrality in metabolic networks and ancient metabolism but also to metabolic engineering with prokaryotes.

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<![CDATA[Percentage fractions of urinary di(2-ethylhexyl) phthalate metabolites: Association with obesity and insulin resistance in Korean girls]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c06f045d5eed0c484c6d57f

Objective

We assessed the associations of percentage fractions of urinary di(2-ethylhexyl) phthalate (DEHP) metabolites with obesity and insulin resistance in Korean girls.

Methods

In total, 137 girls, aged 6 to 13 years (65 overweight cases and 72 controls), were recruited. Anthropometric indices and the homeostatic model assessment of insulin resistance (HOMA-IR) index were determined. Four major urinary DEHP metabolites were analyzed in spot urine samples by gas chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry, including mono(2-ethylhexyl) phthalate, mono(2-ethyl-5-hydroxyhexyl) phthalate (MEHHP), mono(2-ethyl-5-oxohexyl) phthalate (MEOHP), and mono(2-ethyl-5-carboxypentyl) phthalate.

Results

There were no significant differences in the urinary concentrations of the DEHP metabolites between the overweight and control groups. The percentage fraction of MEHHP (MEHHP%) among all DEHP metabolites was significantly higher in the overweight prepubertal girls than in the controls (P = 0.035). MEHHP% was positively associated with the body mass index percentile, waist circumference, body fat percentage, and HOMA-IR index in the prepubertal girls. After adjusting for covariates, the prepubertal girls in a higher MEHHP% quartile were found to have a higher odds ratio for central obesity than those in a lower quartile (odds ratios: 5.05 for quartile 3; 7.30 for quartile 4). The relative rate of MEHHP oxidation to MEOHP was negatively associated with the body mass index percentile and waist circumference in the prepubertal girls. However, no such association was observed in the pubertal girls.

Conclusions

MEHHP% was positively associated with obesity and insulin resistance in prepubertal girls. Further studies are necessary to elucidate the causal links between altered phthalate metabolism and increased susceptibility to insulin resistance in children.

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