ResearchPad - enzyme-regulation 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[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[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[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[Regulation of the opposing (p)ppGpp synthetase and hydrolase activities in a bifunctional RelA/SpoT homologue from Staphylococcus aureus]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5b4f2cc8463d7e25bffba86d

The stringent response is characterized by (p)ppGpp synthesis resulting in repression of translation and reprogramming of the transcriptome. In Staphylococcus aureus, (p)ppGpp is synthesized by the long RSH (RelA/SpoT homolog) enzyme, RelSau or by one of the two short synthetases (RelP, RelQ). RSH enzymes are characterized by an N-terminal enzymatic domain bearing distinct motifs for (p)ppGpp synthetase or hydrolase activity and a C-terminal regulatory domain (CTD) containing conserved motifs (TGS, DC and ACT). The intramolecular switch between synthetase and hydrolase activity of RelSau is crucial for the adaption of S. aureus to stress (stringent) or non-stress (relaxed) conditions. We elucidated the role of the CTD in the enzymatic activities of RelSau. Growth pattern, transcriptional analyses and in vitro assays yielded the following results: i) in vivo, under relaxed conditions, as well as in vitro, the CTD inhibits synthetase activity but is not required for hydrolase activity; ii) under stringent conditions, the CTD is essential for (p)ppGpp synthesis; iii) RelSau lacking the CTD exhibits net hydrolase activity when expressed in S. aureus but net (p)ppGpp synthetase activity when expressed in E. coli; iv) the TGS and DC motifs within the CTD are required for correct stringent response, whereas the ACT motif is dispensable, v) Co-immunoprecipitation indicated that the CTD interacts with the ribosome, which is largely dependent on the TGS motif. In conclusion, RelSau primarily exists in a synthetase-OFF/hydrolase-ON state, the TGS motif within the CTD is required to activate (p)ppGpp synthesis under stringent conditions.

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<![CDATA[The CD27L and CTP1L Endolysins Targeting Clostridia Contain a Built-in Trigger and Release Factor]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989da21ab0ee8fa60b7ed5e

The bacteriophage ΦCD27 is capable of lysing Clostridium difficile, a pathogenic bacterium that is a major cause for nosocomial infection. A recombinant CD27L endolysin lyses C. difficile in vitro, and represents a promising alternative as a bactericide. To better understand the lysis mechanism, we have determined the crystal structure of an autoproteolytic fragment of the CD27L endolysin. The structure covers the C-terminal domain of the endolysin, and represents a novel fold that is identified in a number of lysins that target Clostridia bacteria. The structure indicates endolysin cleavage occurs at the stem of the linker connecting the catalytic domain with the C-terminal domain. We also solved the crystal structure of the C-terminal domain of a slow cleaving mutant of the CTP1L endolysin that targets C. tyrobutyricum. Two distinct dimerization modes are observed in the crystal structures for both endolysins, despite a sequence identity of only 22% between the domains. The dimers are validated to be present for the full length protein in solution by right angle light scattering, small angle X-ray scattering and cross-linking experiments using the cross-linking amino acid p-benzoyl-L-phenylalanine (pBpa). Mutagenesis on residues contributing to the dimer interfaces indicates that there is a link between the dimerization modes and the autocleavage mechanism. We show that for the CTP1L endolysin, there is a reduction in lysis efficiency that is proportional to the cleavage efficiency. We propose a model for endolysin triggering, where the extended dimer presents the inactive state, and a switch to the side-by-side dimer triggers the cleavage of the C-terminal domain. This leads to the release of the catalytic portion of the endolysin, enabling the efficient digestion of the bacterial cell wall.

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<![CDATA[Mechanistic Insights into Validoxylamine A 7'-Phosphate Synthesis by VldE Using the Structure of the Entire Product Complex]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989daadab0ee8fa60baa2d0

The pseudo-glycosyltransferase VldE catalyzes non-glycosidic C-N coupling between an unsaturated cyclitol and a saturated aminocyclitol with the conservation of the stereochemical configuration of the substrates to form validoxylamine A 7′-phosphate, the biosynthetic precursor of the antibiotic validamycin A. To study the molecular basis of its mechanism, the three-dimensional structures of VldE from Streptomyces hygroscopicus subsp. limoneus was determined in apo form, in complex with GDP, in complex with GDP and validoxylamine A 7′-phosphate, and in complex with GDP and trehalose. The structure of VldE with the catalytic site in both an “open” and “closed” conformation is also described. With these structures, the preferred binding of the guanine moiety by VldE, rather than the uracil moiety as seen in OtsA could be explained. The elucidation of the VldE structure in complex with the entirety of its products provides insight into the internal return mechanism by which catalysis occurs with a net retention of the stereochemical configuration of the donated cyclitol.

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<![CDATA[Astrocyte Inositol Triphosphate Receptor Type 2 and Cytosolic Phospholipase A2 Alpha Regulate Arteriole Responses in Mouse Neocortical Brain Slices]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989d9f3ab0ee8fa60b6f4b5

Functional hyperemia of the cerebral vascular system matches regional blood flow to the metabolic demands of the brain. One current model of neurovascular control holds that glutamate released by neurons activates group I metabotropic glutamate receptors (mGluRs) on astrocytes, resulting in the production of diffusible messengers that act to regulate smooth muscle cells surrounding cerebral arterioles. The acute mouse brain slice is an experimental system in which changes in arteriole diameter can precisely measured with light microscopy. Stimulation of the brain slice triggers specific cellular responses that can be correlated to changes in arteriole diameter. Here we used inositol trisphosphate receptor type 2 (IP3R2) and cytosolic phospholipase A2 alpha (cPLA2α) deficient mice to determine if astrocyte mGluR activation coupled to IP3R2-mediated Ca2+ release and subsequent cPLA2α activation is required for arteriole regulation. We measured changes in astrocyte cytosolic free Ca2+ and arteriole diameters in response to mGluR agonist or electrical field stimulation in acute neocortical mouse brain slices maintained in 95% or 20% O2. Astrocyte Ca2+ and arteriole responses to mGluR activation were absent in IP3R2/− slices. Astrocyte Ca2+ responses to mGluR activation were unchanged by deletion of cPLA2α but arteriole responses to either mGluR agonist or electrical stimulation were ablated. The valence of changes in arteriole diameter (dilation/constriction) was dependent upon both stimulus and O2 concentration. Neuron-derived NO and activation of the group I mGluRs are required for responses to electrical stimulation. These findings indicate that an mGluR/IP3R2/cPLA2α signaling cascade in astrocytes is required to transduce neuronal glutamate release into arteriole responses.

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<![CDATA[Mechanism of Heparin Acceleration of Tissue Inhibitor of Metalloproteases-1 (TIMP-1) Degradation by the Human Neutrophil Elastase]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989db18ab0ee8fa60bcd9ca

Heparin has been shown to regulate human neutrophil elastase (HNE) activity. We have assessed the regulatory effect of heparin on Tissue Inhibitor of Metalloproteases-1 [TIMP-1] hydrolysis by HNE employing the recombinant form of TIMP-1 and correlated FRET-peptides comprising the TIMP-1 cleavage site. Heparin accelerates 2.5-fold TIMP-1 hydrolysis by HNE. The kinetic parameters of this reaction were monitored with the aid of a FRET-peptide substrate that mimics the TIMP-1 cleavage site in pre-steady-state conditionsby using a stopped-flow fluorescence system. The hydrolysis of the FRET-peptide substrate by HNE exhibits a pre-steady-state burst phase followed by a linear, steady-state pseudo-first-order reaction. The HNE acylation step (k2 = 21±1 s−1) was much higher than the HNE deacylation step (k3 = 0.57±0.05 s−1). The presence of heparin induces a dramatic effect in the pre-steady-state behavior of HNE. Heparin induces transient lag phase kinetics in HNE cleavage of the FRET-peptide substrate. The pre-steady-state analysis revealed that heparin affects all steps of the reaction through enhancing the ES complex concentration, increasing k1 2.4-fold and reducing k−1 3.1-fold. Heparin also promotes a 7.8-fold decrease in the k2 value, whereas the k3 value in the presence of heparin was increased 58-fold. These results clearly show that heparin binding accelerates deacylation and slows down acylation. Heparin shifts the HNE pH activity profile to the right, allowing HNE to be active at alkaline pH. Molecular docking and kinetic analysis suggest that heparin induces conformational changes in HNE structure. Here, we are showing for the first time that heparin is able to accelerate the hydrolysis of TIMP-1 by HNE. The degradation of TIMP-1is associated to important physiopathological states involving excessive activation of MMPs.

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<![CDATA[A Model for Transition of 5′-Nuclease Domain of DNA Polymerase I from Inert to Active Modes]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989d9f5ab0ee8fa60b6fc46

Bacteria contain DNA polymerase I (PolI), a single polypeptide chain consisting of ∼930 residues, possessing DNA-dependent DNA polymerase, 3′-5′ proofreading and 5′-3′ exonuclease (also known as flap endonuclease) activities. PolI is particularly important in the processing of Okazaki fragments generated during lagging strand replication and must ultimately produce a double-stranded substrate with a nick suitable for DNA ligase to seal. PolI's activities must be highly coordinated both temporally and spatially otherwise uncontrolled 5′-nuclease activity could attack a nick and produce extended gaps leading to potentially lethal double-strand breaks. To investigate the mechanism of how PolI efficiently produces these nicks, we present theoretical studies on the dynamics of two possible scenarios or models. In one the flap DNA substrate can transit from the polymerase active site to the 5′-nuclease active site, with the relative position of the two active sites being kept fixed; while the other is that the 5′-nuclease domain can transit from the inactive mode, with the 5′-nuclease active site distant from the cleavage site on the DNA substrate, to the active mode, where the active site and substrate cleavage site are juxtaposed. The theoretical results based on the former scenario are inconsistent with the available experimental data that indicated that the majority of 5′-nucleolytic processing events are carried out by the same PolI molecule that has just extended the upstream primer terminus. By contrast, the theoretical results on the latter model, which is constructed based on available structural studies, are consistent with the experimental data. We thus conclude that the latter model rather than the former one is reasonable to describe the cooperation of the PolI's polymerase and 5′-3′ exonuclease activities. Moreover, predicted results for the latter model are presented.

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<![CDATA[The EP300, KDM5A, KDM6A and KDM6B Chromatin Regulators Cooperate with KLF4 in the Transcriptional Activation of POU5F1]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989daf0ab0ee8fa60bc102c

POU5F1 is essential for maintaining pluripotency in embryonic stem cells (ESCs). It has been reported that the constitutive activation of POU5F1 is sustained by the core transcriptional regulatory circuitry in ESCs; however, the means by which POU5F1 is epigenetically regulated remains enigmatic. In this study a fluorescence-based reporter system was used to monitor the interplay of 5 reprogramming-associated TFs and 17 chromatin regulators in the transcription of POU5F1. We show the existence of a stoichiometric effect for SOX2, POU5F1, NANOG, MYC and KLF4, in regulating POU5F1 transcription. Chromatin regulators EP300, KDM5A, KDM6A and KDM6B cooperate with KLF4 in promoting the transcription of POU5F1. Moreover, inhibiting HDAC activities induced the expression of Pou5f1 in mouse neural stem cells (NSCs) in a spatial- and temporal- dependent manner. Quantitative chromatin immunoprecipitation-PCR (ChIP-qPCR) shows that treatment with valproic acid (VPA) increases the recruitment of Kdm5a and Kdm6a to proximal promoter (PP) and proximal enhancer (PE) of Pou5f1 whereas enrichment of Ep300 and Kdm6b was seen in PP but not PE of Pou5f1 promoter. These findings reveal the interplay between the chromatin regulators and histone modifications in the expression of POU5F1.

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<![CDATA[Identification of a Novel Binding Partner of Phospholipase Cβ1: Translin-Associated Factor X]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989daefab0ee8fa60bc0877

Mammalian phospholipase Cβ1 (PLCβ1) is activated by the ubiquitous Gαq family of G proteins on the surface of the inner leaflet of plasma membrane where it catalyzes the hydrolysis of phosphatidylinositol 4,5 bisphosphate. In general, PLCβ1 is mainly localized on the cytosolic plasma membrane surface, although a substantial fraction is also found in the cytosol and, under some conditions, in the nucleus. The factors that localize PLCβ1in these other compartments are unknown. Here, we identified a novel binding partner, translin-associated factor X (TRAX). TRAX is a cytosolic protein that can transit into the nucleus. In purified form, PLCβ1 binds strongly to TRAX with an affinity that is only ten-fold weaker than its affinity for its functional partner, Gαq. In solution, TRAX has little effect on the membrane association or the catalytic activity of PLCβ1. However, TRAX directly competes with Gαq for PLCβ1 binding, and excess TRAX reverses Gαq activation of PLCβ1. In C6 glia cells, endogenous PLCβ1 and TRAX colocalize in the cytosol and the nucleus, but not on the plasma membrane where TRAX is absent. In Neuro2A cells expressing enhanced yellow and cyano fluorescent proteins (i.e., eYFP- PLCβ1 and eCFP-TRAX), Förster resonance energy transfer (FRET) is observed mostly in the cytosol and a small amount is seen in the nucleus. FRET does not occur at the plasma membrane where TRAX is not found. Our studies show that TRAX, localized in the cytosol and nucleus, competes with plasma-membrane bound Gαq for PLCβ1 binding thus stabilizing PLCβ1 in other cellular compartments.

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<![CDATA[Overexpression of a Minimal Domain of Calpastatin Suppresses IL-6 Production and Th17 Development via Reduced NF-κB and Increased STAT5 Signals]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989db3bab0ee8fa60bd4d86

Calpain, a calcium-dependent cysteine protease, is reportedly involved in the pathophysiology of autoimmune diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis (RA). In addition, autoantibodies against calpastatin, a natural and specific inhibitor of calpain, are widely observed in RA. We previously reported that E-64-d, a membrane-permeable cysteine protease inhibitor, is effective in treating experimental arthritis. However, the exact role of the calpastatin-calpain balance in primary inflammatory cells remains unclear. Here we investigated the effect of calpain-specific inhibition by overexpressing a minimal functional domain of calpastatin in primary helper T (Th) cells, primary fibroblasts from RA patients, and fibroblast cell lines. We found that the calpastatin-calpain balance varied during Th1, Th2, and Th17 development, and that overexpression of a minimal domain of calpastatin (by retroviral gene transduction) or the inhibition of calpain by E-64-d suppressed the production of IL-6 and IL-17 by Th cells and the production of IL-6 by fibroblasts. These suppressions were associated with reductions in RORγt expression and STAT3 phosphorylation. Furthermore, inhibiting calpain by silencing its small regulatory subunit (CPNS) suppressed Th17 development. We also confirmed that overexpressing a minimal domain of calpastatin suppressed IL-6 by reducing NF-κB signaling via the stabilization of IκBα, without affecting the upstream signal. Moreover, our findings indicated that calpastatin overexpression suppressed IL-17 production by Th cells by up-regulating the STAT5 signal. Finally, overexpression of a minimal domain of calpastatin suppressed IL-6 production efficiently in primary fibroblasts derived from the RA synovium. These findings suggest that inhibiting calpain by overexpressing a minimal domain of calpastatin could coordinately suppress proinflammatory activities, not only those of Th cells but also of synovial fibroblasts. Thus, this strategy may prove viable as a candidate treatment for inflammatory diseases such as RA.

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<![CDATA[Properties and Crystal Structure of Methylenetetrahydrofolate Reductase from Thermus thermophilus HB8]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989d9fbab0ee8fa60b720d7

Background

Methylenetetrahydrofolate reductase (MTHFR) is one of the enzymes involved in homocysteine metabolism. Despite considerable genetic and clinical attention, the reaction mechanism and regulation of this enzyme are not fully understood because of difficult production and poor stability. While recombinant enzymes from thermophilic organisms are often stable and easy to prepare, properties of thermostable MTHFRs have not yet been reported.

Methodology/Principal Findings

MTHFR from Thermus thermophilus HB8, a homologue of Escherichia coli MetF, has been expressed in E. coli and purified. The purified MTHFR was chiefly obtained as a heterodimer of apo- and holo-subunits, that is, one flavin adenine dinucleotide (FAD) prosthetic group bound per dimer. The crystal structure of the holo-subunit was quite similar to the β8α8 barrel of E. coli MTHFR, while that of the apo-subunit was a previously unobserved closed form. In addition, the intersubunit interface of the dimer in the crystals was different from any of the subunit interfaces of the tetramer of E. coli MTHFR. Free FAD could be incorporated into the apo-subunit of the purified Thermus enzyme after purification, forming a homodimer of holo-subunits. Comparison of the crystal structures of the heterodimer and the homodimer revealed different intersubunit interfaces, indicating a large conformational change upon FAD binding. Most of the biochemical properties of the heterodimer and the homodimer were the same, except that the homodimer showed ≈50% activity per FAD-bound subunit in folate-dependent reactions.

Conclusions/Significance

The different intersubunit interfaces and rearrangement of subunits of Thermus MTHFR may be related to human enzyme properties, such as the allosteric regulation by S-adenosylmethionine and the enhanced instability of the Ala222Val mutant upon loss of FAD. Whereas E. coli MTHFR was the only structural model for human MTHFR to date, our findings suggest that Thermus MTHFR will be another useful model for this important enzyme.

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<![CDATA[Discovery of an Auto-Regulation Mechanism for the Maltose ABC Transporter MalFGK2]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989daa1ab0ee8fa60ba5eac

The maltose transporter MalFGK2, together with the substrate-binding protein MalE, is one of the best-characterized ABC transporters. In the conventional model, MalE captures maltose in the periplasm and delivers the sugar to the transporter. Here, using nanodiscs and proteoliposomes, we instead find that MalE is bound with high-affinity to MalFGK2 to facilitate the acquisition of the sugar. When the maltose concentration exceeds the transport capacity, MalE captures maltose and dissociates from the transporter. This mechanism explains why the transport rate is high when MalE has low affinity for maltose, and low when MalE has high affinity for maltose. Transporter-bound MalE facilitates the acquisition of the sugar at low concentrations, but also captures and dissociates from the transporter past a threshold maltose concentration. In vivo, this maltose-forced dissociation limits the rate of transport. Given the conservation of the substrate-binding proteins, this mode of allosteric regulation may be universal to ABC importers.

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<![CDATA[6-Arylpyrido[2,3-d]pyrimidines as Novel ATP-Competitive Inhibitors of Bacterial D-Alanine:D-Alanine Ligase]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989db24ab0ee8fa60bcff2e

Background

ATP-dependent D-alanine:D-alanine ligase (Ddl) is a part of biochemical machinery involved in peptidoglycan biosynthesis, as it catalyzes the formation of the terminal D-ala-D-ala dipeptide of the peptidoglycan precursor UDPMurNAc-pentapeptide. Inhibition of Ddl prevents bacterial growth, which makes this enzyme an attractive and viable target in the urgent search of novel effective antimicrobial drugs. To address the problem of a relentless increase in resistance to known antimicrobial agents we focused our attention to discovery of novel ATP-competitive inhibitors of Ddl.

Methodology/Principal Findings

Encouraged by recent successful attempts to find selective ATP-competitive inhibitors of bacterial enzymes we designed, synthesized and evaluated a library of 6-arylpyrido[2,3-d]pyrimidine-based compounds as inhibitors of Escherichia coli DdlB. Inhibitor binding to the target enzyme was subsequently confirmed by surface plasmon resonance and studied with isothermal titration calorimetry. Since kinetic analysis indicated that 6-arylpyrido[2,3-d]pyrimidines compete with the enzyme substrate ATP, inhibitor binding to the ATP-binding site was additionally studied with docking. Some of these inhibitors were found to possess antibacterial activity against membrane-compromised and efflux pump-deficient strains of E. coli.

Conclusions/Significance

We discovered new ATP-competitive inhibitors of DdlB, which may serve as a starting point for development of more potent inhibitors of DdlB that could include both, an ATP-competitive and D-Ala competitive moiety.

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<![CDATA[Over-Expression of Monoacylglycerol Lipase (MGL) in Small Intestine Alters Endocannabinoid Levels and Whole Body Energy Balance, Resulting in Obesity]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989da83ab0ee8fa60b9b846

The function of small intestinal monoacylglycerol lipase (MGL) is unknown. Its expression in this tissue is surprising because one of the primary functions of the small intestine is to convert diet-derived MGs to triacylglycerol (TG), and not to degrade them. To elucidate the function of intestinal MGL, we generated transgenic mice that over-express MGL specifically in small intestine (iMGL mice). After only 3 weeks of high fat feeding, iMGL mice showed an obese phenotype; body weight gain and body fat mass were markedly higher in iMGL mice, along with increased hepatic and plasma TG levels compared to wild type littermates. The iMGL mice were hyperphagic and displayed reduced energy expenditure despite unchanged lean body mass, suggesting that the increased adiposity was due to both increased caloric intake and systemic effects resulting in a hypometabolic rate. The presence of the transgene resulted in lower levels of most MG species in intestinal mucosa, including the endocannabinoid 2-arachidonoyl glycerol (2-AG). The results therefore suggest a role for intestinal MGL, and intestinal 2-AG and perhaps other MG species, in whole body energy balance via regulation of food intake as well as metabolic rate.

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<![CDATA[Inhibition of a NEDD8 Cascade Restores Restriction of HIV by APOBEC3G]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989dae5ab0ee8fa60bbd2b7

Cellular restriction factors help to defend humans against human immunodeficiency virus (HIV). HIV accessory proteins hijack at least three different Cullin-RING ubiquitin ligases, which must be activated by the small ubiquitin-like protein NEDD8, in order to counteract host cellular restriction factors. We found that conjugation of NEDD8 to Cullin-5 by the NEDD8-conjugating enzyme UBE2F is required for HIV Vif-mediated degradation of the host restriction factor APOBEC3G (A3G). Pharmacological inhibition of the NEDD8 E1 by MLN4924 or knockdown of either UBE2F or its RING-protein binding partner RBX2 bypasses the effect of Vif, restoring the restriction of HIV by A3G. NMR mapping and mutational analyses define specificity determinants of the UBE2F NEDD8 cascade. These studies demonstrate that disrupting host NEDD8 cascades presents a novel antiretroviral therapeutic approach enhancing the ability of the immune system to combat HIV.

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<![CDATA[Lowe Syndrome Protein OCRL1 Supports Maturation of Polarized Epithelial Cells]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989dab0ab0ee8fa60bab0a7

Mutations in the inositol polyphosphate 5-phosphatase OCRL1 cause Lowe Syndrome, leading to cataracts, mental retardation and renal failure. We noted that cell types affected in Lowe Syndrome are highly polarized, and therefore we studied OCRL1 in epithelial cells as they mature from isolated individual cells into polarized sheets and cysts with extensive communication between neighbouring cells. We show that a proportion of OCRL1 targets intercellular junctions at the early stages of their formation, co-localizing both with adherens junctional components and with tight junctional components. Correlating with this distribution, OCRL1 forms complexes with junctional components α-catenin and zonula occludens (ZO)-1/2/3. Depletion of OCRL1 in epithelial cells growing as a sheet inhibits maturation; cells remain flat, fail to polarize apical markers and also show reduced proliferation. The effect on shape is reverted by re-expressed OCRL1 and requires the 5′-phosphatase domain, indicating that down-regulation of 5-phosphorylated inositides is necessary for epithelial development. The effect of OCRL1 in epithelial maturation is seen more strongly in 3-dimensional cultures, where epithelial cells lacking OCRL1 not only fail to form a central lumen, but also do not have the correct intracellular distribution of ZO-1, suggesting that OCRL1 functions early in the maturation of intercellular junctions when cells grow as cysts. A role of OCRL1 in junctions of polarized cells may explain the pattern of organs affected in Lowe Syndrome.

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