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Aminoglycoside antibiotic phosphotransferases are also serine protein kinases

Mon, 06/15/2015 - 12:02pm

BACKGROUND: Bacterial resistance to aminoglycoside antibiotics occurs primarily through the expression of modifying enzymes that covalently alter the drugs by O-phosphorylation, O-adenylation or N-acetylation. Aminoglycoside phosphotransferases (APHs) catalyze the ATP-dependent phosphorylation of these antibiotics. Two particular enzymes in this class, APH(3')-IIIa and AAC(6')-APH(2"), are produced in gram-positive cocci and have been shown to phosphorylate aminoglycosides on their 3' and 2" hydroxyl groups, respectively. The three-dimensional structure of APH (3')-IIIa is strikingly similar to those of eukaryotic protein kinases (EPKs), and the observation, reported previously, that APH(3')-IIIa and AAC(6')-APH(2") are effectively inhibited by EPK inhibitors suggested the possibility that these aminoglycoside kinases might phosphorylate EPK substrates.

RESULTS: Our data demonstrate unequivocally that APHs can phosphorylate several EPK substrates and that this phosphorylation occurs exclusively on serine residues. Phosphorylation of Ser/Thr protein kinase substrates by APHs was considerably slower than phosphorylation of aminoglycosides under identical assay conditions, which is consistent with the primary biological roles of the enzymes.

CONCLUSIONS: These results demonstrate a functional relationship between aminoglycoside and protein kinases, expanding on our previous observations of similarities in protein structure, enzyme mechanism and sensitivity to inhibitors, and suggest an evolutionary link between APHs and EPKs.

The COOH terminus of aminoglycoside phosphotransferase (3')-IIIa is critical for antibiotic recognition and resistance

Mon, 06/15/2015 - 12:02pm

The aminoglycoside phosphotransferases (APHs) are widely distributed among pathogenic bacteria and are employed to covalently modify, and thereby detoxify, the clinically relevant aminoglycoside antibiotics. The crystal structure for one of these aminoglycoside kinases, APH(3')-IIIa, has been determined in complex with ADP and analysis of the electrostatic surface potential indicates that there is a large anionic depression present adjacent to the terminal phosphate group of the nucleotide. This region also includes a conserved COOH-terminal alpha-helix that contains the COOH-terminal residue Phe(264). We report here mutagenesis and computer modeling studies aimed at examining the mode of aminoglycoside binding to APH(3')-IIIa. Specifically, seven site mutants were studied, five from the COOH-terminal helix (Asp(261), Glu(262), and Phe(264)), and two additional residues that line the wall of the anionic depression (Tyr(55) and Arg(211)). Using a molecular modeling approach, six ternary complexes of APH(3')-IIIa.ATP with the antibiotics, kanamycin, amikacin, butirosin, and ribostamycin were independently constructed and these agree well with the mutagenesis data. The results obtained show that the COOH-terminal carboxylate of Phe(264) is critical for proper function of the enzyme. Furthermore, these studies demonstrate that there exists multiple binding modes for the aminoglycosides, which provides a molecular basis for the broad substrate- and regiospecificity observed for this enzyme.

Crystal structures of homoserine dehydrogenase suggest a novel catalytic mechanism for oxidoreductases

Mon, 06/15/2015 - 12:02pm

The structure of the antifungal drug target homoserine dehydrogenase (HSD) was determined from Saccharomyces cerevisiae in apo and holo forms, and as a ternary complex with bound products, by X-ray diffraction. The three forms show that the enzyme is a dimer, with each monomer composed of three regions, the nucleotide-binding region, the dimerization region and the catalytic region. The dimerization and catalytic regions have novel folds, whereas the fold of the nucleotide-binding region is a variation on the Rossmann fold. The novel folds impose a novel composition and arrangement of active site residues when compared to all other currently known oxidoreductases. This observation, in conjunction with site-directed mutagenesis of active site residues and steady-state kinetic measurements, suggest that HSD exhibits a new variation on dehydrogenase chemistry.

Molecular mechanism of aminoglycoside antibiotic kinase APH(3')-IIIa: roles of conserved active site residues

Mon, 06/15/2015 - 12:02pm

The aminoglycoside antibiotic kinases (APHs) constitute a clinically important group of antibiotic resistance enzymes. APHs share structural and functional homology with Ser/Thr and Tyr kinases, yet only five amino acids are invariant between the two groups of enzymes and these residues are all located within the nucleotide binding regions of the proteins. We have performed site-directed mutagenesis on all five conserved residues in the aminoglycoside kinase APH(3')-IIIa: Lys(44) and Glu(60) involved in ATP capture, a putative active site base required for deprotonating the incoming aminoglycoside hydroxyl group Asp(190), and the Mg(2+) ligands Asn(195) and Glu(208), which coordinate two Mg(2+) ions, Mg1 and Mg2. Previous structural and mutagenesis evidence have demonstrated that Lys(44) interacts directly with the phosphate groups of ATP; mutagenesis of invariant Glu(60), which forms a salt bridge with the epsilon-amino group of Lys(44), demonstrated that this residue does not play a critical role in ATP recognition or catalysis. Results of mutagenesis of Asp(190) were consistent with a role in proper positioning of the aminoglycoside hydroxyl during phosphoryl transfer but not as a general base. The Mg1 and Mg2 ligand Asp(208) was found to be absolutely required for enzyme activity and the Mg2 ligand Asn(195) is important for Mg.ATP recognition. The mutagenesis results together with solvent isotope, solvent viscosity, and divalent cation requirements are consistent with a dissociative mechanism of phosphoryl transfer where initial substrate deprotonation is not essential for phosphate transfer and where Mg2 and Asp(208) likely play a critical role in stabilization of a metaphosphate-like transition state. These results lay the foundation for the synthesis of transition state mimics that could reverse aminoglycoside antibiotic resistance in vivo.

Transcriptional coactivator protein p300. Kinetic characterization of its histone acetyltransferase activity

Mon, 06/15/2015 - 12:02pm

The p300/cAMP response element-binding protein-binding protein (CBP) family members include human p300 and cAMP response element-binding protein-binding protein, which are both important transcriptional coactivators and histone acetyltransferases. Although the role of these enzymes in transcriptional regulation has been extensively documented, the molecular mechanisms of p300 and CBP histone acetyltransferase catalysis are poorly understood. Herein, we describe the first detailed kinetic characterization of p300 using full-length purified recombinant enzyme. These studies have employed peptide substrates to systematically examine the substrate specificity requirements and the kinetic mechanism of this enzyme. The importance of nearby positively charged residues in lysine targeting was demonstrated. The strict structural requirement of the lysine side chain was shown. The catalytic mechanism of p300 was shown to follow a ping-pong kinetic pathway and viscosity experiments revealed that product release and/or a conformational change were likely rate-limiting in catalysis. Detailed analysis of the p300 selective inhibitor Lys-CoA showed that it exhibited slow, tight-binding kinetics.

Mechanism of aminoglycoside antibiotic kinase APH(3')-IIIa: role of the nucleotide positioning loop

Mon, 06/15/2015 - 12:02pm

The aminoglycoside antibiotic resistance kinases (APHs) and the Ser/Thr/Tyr protein kinases share structural and functional homology but very little primary sequence conservation ( < 5%). A region of structural, but not amino acid sequence, homology is the nucleotide positioning loop (NPL) that closes down on the enzyme active site upon binding of ATP. This loop region has been implicated in facilitating phosphoryl transfer in protein kinases; however, there is no primary sequence conservation between APHs and protein kinases in the NPL. There is an invariant Ser residue in all APH NPL regions, however. This residue in APH(3')-IIIa (Ser27), an enzyme widespread in aminoglycoside-resistant Enterococci, Streptococci, and Staphylococci, directly interacts with the beta-phosphate of ATP through the Ser hydroxymethyl group and the amide hydrogen in the 3D structure of the enzyme. Mutagenesis of this residue to Ala and Pro supported a role for the Ser amide hydrogen in nucleotide capture and phosphoryl transfer. A molecular model of the proposed dissociative transition state, which is consistent with all of the available mechanistic data, suggested a role for the amide of the adjacent Met26 in phosphoryl transfer. Mutagenesis studies confirmed the importance of the amide hydrogen and suggest a mechanism where Ser27 anchors the ATP beta-phosphate facilitating bond breakage with the gamma-phosphate during formation of the metaphosphate-like transition, which is stabilized by interaction with the amide hydrogen of Met26. The APH NPL therefore acts as a lever, promoting phosphoryl transfer to the aminoglycoside substrate, with the biological outcome of clinically relevant antibiotic resistance.

Synthesis and analysis of potential prodrugs of coenzyme A analogues for the inhibition of the histone acetyltransferase p300

Mon, 06/15/2015 - 12:02pm

Lys-CoA (1) is a selective inhibitor of p300 histone acetyltransferase (HAT) but shows poor pharmacokinetic properties because of its multiply charged phosphates. In an effort to overcome this limitation, truncated derivatives of 1 were designed, synthesized and tested as p300HAT inhibitors as well as substrates for the CoA biosynthetic bifunctional enzyme phosphopantetheine adenylyltransferase-dephospho-CoA kinase (PPAT/DPCK). Lys-pantetheine (3) and Lys-phosphopantetheine (2) showed no detectable p300HAT inhibition whereas 3'-dephospho-Lys-CoA (5) was a modest p300 inhibitor with IC(50) of 1.6 microM (compared to IC(50) of approximately 50 nM for 1 blocking p300). Compound 2 was shown to be an efficient substrate for PPAT whereas 5 was a very poor DPCK substrate. Further analysis with 3'-dephospho-Me-SCoA (7) indicated that DPCK shows relatively narrow capacity to accept substrates with sulfur substitution. While these results suggest that truncated derivatives of 1 will be of limited value as lead agents for p300 blockade in vivo, they augur well for prodrug versions of CoA analogues that do not require 3'-phosphate substitution for efficient binding to their targets, such as the GCN-5 related N-acetyltransferases.

Regulation of the p300 HAT domain via a novel activation loop

Mon, 06/15/2015 - 12:02pm

The transcriptional coactivator p300 is a histone acetyltransferase (HAT) whose function is critical for regulating gene expression in mammalian cells. However, the molecular events that regulate p300 HAT activity are poorly understood. We evaluated autoacetylation of the p300 HAT protein domain to determine its function. Using expressed protein ligation, the p300 HAT protein domain was generated in hypoacetylated form and found to have reduced catalytic activity. This basal catalytic rate was stimulated by autoacetylation of several key lysine sites within an apparent activation loop motif. This post-translational modification and catalytic regulation of p300 HAT activity is conceptually analogous to the activation of most protein kinases by autophosphorylation. We therefore propose that this autoregulatory loop could influence the impact of p300 on a wide variety of signaling and transcriptional events.

Bisubstrate analogue structure-activity relationships for p300 histone acetyltransferase inhibitors

Mon, 06/15/2015 - 12:01pm

p300 and CBP are important histone acetyltransferases (HATs) that regulate gene expression and may be anti-cancer drug targets. Based on a previous lead compound, Lys-CoA, we have used solid phase synthesis to generate a series of 11 new analogues and evaluated these compounds as HAT inhibitors. Increased spacing between the CoA moiety and the lysyl moiety generally decreases inhibitory potency. We have found two substituted derivatives that show about 4-fold increased potency compared to the parent compound Lys-CoA. These structure-activity studies allow for a greater understanding of the optimal requirements for potent inhibition of HAT enzymes and pave the way for a novel class of anti-cancer therapeutics.

Structural analysis of a highly acetylated protein using a curved-field reflectron mass spectrometer

Mon, 06/15/2015 - 12:01pm

Matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization mass spectrometry and tandem mass spectrometry (MS/MS) were used to determine the multiple acetylation sites in the histone acetyltransferase (HAT): p300-HAT. Partial cleavage of the peptides containing acetylated lysine residues by trypsin provided a set of nested sequences that enabled us to determine that multiple acetylation occurs on the same molecule. At the same time, cleavages resulting in a terminal unacetylated lysine suggested that not all of these sites are fully modified. Using MS and MS/MS, we were able to characterize both the unmodified and acetylated tryptic peptides covering more than 82% of the protein.

Kinetic characterization of protein arginine deiminase 4: a transcriptional corepressor implicated in the onset and progression of rheumatoid arthritis

Mon, 06/15/2015 - 12:01pm

Protein arginine deiminase 4 (PAD4) is a Ca(2+)-dependent enzyme that catalyzes the posttranslational conversion of arginine to citrulline (Arg to Cit) in a number of proteins, including histones. While the gene encoding this enzyme has been implicated in the pathophysiology of rheumatoid arthritis (RA), little is known about its mechanism of catalysis, its in vivo role, or its role in the pathophysiology of RA; however, recent reports suggest that this enzyme can act as a transcriptional corepressor for the estrogen receptor. Herein, we report our initial kinetic and mechanistic characterization of human PAD4. Specifically, these studies confirm that PAD4 catalyzes the hydrolytic deimination of Arg residues to produce Cit and ammonia. The metal dependence of PAD4 has also been evaluated, and the results indicate that PAD4 activity is highly specific for calcium. Calcium activation of PAD4 catalysis exhibits positive cooperativity with K(0.5) values in the mid to high micromolar range. Evidence indicating that calcium binding causes a conformational change is also presented. Additionally, the steady-state kinetic parameters for a number of histone H4-based peptide substrates and benzoylated Arg derivatives have been determined. K(m) values for these compounds are in the high micromolar to the low millimolar range with k(cat) values ranging from 2.8 to 6.6 s(-)(1). The ability of PAD4 to catalyze the deimination of methylated Arg residues has also been evaluated, and the results indicate that these compounds are poor PAD4 substrates (V/K < or= 31.3 M(-)(1) s(-)(1)) in comparison to other substrates. These findings suggest that the full-length enzyme does not catalyze this reaction in vitro and possibly in vivo either. Collectively, the studies described herein will provide a firm foundation for the future development of PAD4 selective inhibitors.

A fluoroacetamidine-based inactivator of protein arginine deiminase 4: design, synthesis, and in vitro and in vivo evaluation

Mon, 06/15/2015 - 12:01pm

Protein arginine deiminase 4 (PAD4) is a calcium-dependent transcriptional corepressor that has been implicated in the onset and progression of rheumatoid arthritis. Herein we describe the synthesis and in vitro evaluation of a fluoroacetamidine-containing compound, N-alpha-benzoyl-N5-(2-fluoro-1-iminoethyl)-l-ornithine amide, 1, hereafter referred to as F-amidine, that is the most potent PAD4 inhibitor ever described. Additional studies described herein indicate that F-amidine can also inhibit PAD4 activity in vivo. The bioavailability of this compound suggests that F-amidine will be a powerful chemical probe of PAD4 function that can be used to dissect the roles of this enzyme in both rheumatoid arthritis and transcriptional control. The fact that inhibition is of an irreversible nature suggests that, with appropriate functionalization, F-amidine analogues will be robust activity-based protein-profiling and proteomic capture reagents.

Histone citrullination by protein arginine deiminase: is arginine methylation a green light or a roadblock

Mon, 06/15/2015 - 12:01pm

Protein citrullination, a once-obscure post-translational modification (PTM) of peptidylarginine, has recently become an area of significant interest because of its suspected role in human disease states, including rheumatoid arthritis and multiple sclerosis, and also because of its newfound role in gene regulation. One protein isozyme responsible for this modification, protein arginine deiminase 4 (PAD4), has also been proposed to "reverse" epigenetic histone modifications made by the protein arginine methyltransferases. Here, we review the in vivo and in vitro studies of transcriptional regulation by PAD4, evaluate conflicting evidence for its ability to use methylated peptidylarginine as a substrate, and highlight promising areas of future work. Understanding the interplay of multiple arginine PTMs is an emerging area of importance in health and disease and is a topic best addressed by novel tools in proteomics and chemical biology.

Inhibitors and inactivators of protein arginine deiminase 4: functional and structural characterization

Mon, 06/15/2015 - 12:01pm

Protein arginine deiminase 4 (PAD4) is a transcriptional coregulator that catalyzes the calcium-dependent conversion of specific arginine residues in proteins to citrulline. Recently, we reported the synthesis and characterization of F-amidine, a potent and bioavailable irreversible inactivator of PAD4. Herein, we report our efforts to identify the steric and leaving group requirements for F-amidine-induced PAD4 inactivation, the structure of the PAD4-F-amidine x calcium complex, and in vivo studies with N-alpha-benzoyl-N5-(2-chloro-1-iminoethyl)-L-ornithine amide (Cl-amidine), a PAD4 inactivator with enhanced potency. The PAD4 inactivators described herein will be useful pharmacological probes in characterizing the incompletely defined physiological role(s) of this enzyme. In addition, they represent potential lead compounds for the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis because a growing body of evidence supports a role for PAD4 in the onset and progression of this chronic autoimmune disorder.

Activity-based protein profiling reagents for protein arginine deiminase 4 (PAD4): synthesis and in vitro evaluation of a fluorescently labeled probe

Mon, 06/15/2015 - 12:01pm

Protein arginine deiminase 4 (PAD4), which catalyzes the post-translational conversion of peptidyl arginine to peptidyl citrulline, is widely regarded as one of the best new targets for the development of a novel rheumatoid arthritis therapeutic. In addition to its presumed role in this disease, PAD4 is also a calcium-dependent histone deiminase that acts as a transcriptional co-repressor. Herein we describe the design, synthesis, and in vitro evaluation of two fluorescently labeled activity-based protein profiling (ABPP) reagents that specifically and irreversibly modify the active, that is, calcium-bound, form PAD4 with equal affinity to previously described small molecule chemical probes of PAD4 function. These fluorescently tagged ABPPs will be useful for identifying the conditions under which this enzyme is activated in vivo and may prove to be useful RA diagnostics.

Methyllysine analogs: rewriting the code

Mon, 06/15/2015 - 12:01pm

Protein arginine deiminase 4: evidence for a reverse protonation mechanism

Mon, 06/15/2015 - 12:01pm

The presumed role of an overactive protein arginine deiminase 4 (PAD4) in the pathophysiology of rheumatoid arthritis (RA) suggests that PAD4 inhibitors could be used to treat an underlying cause of RA, potentially offering a mechanism to stop further disease progression. Thus, the development of such inhibitors is of paramount importance. Toward the goal of developing such inhibitors, we initiated efforts to characterize the catalytic mechanism of PAD4 and thereby identify important mechanistic features that can be exploited for inhibitor development. Herein we report the results of mutagenesis studies as well as our efforts to characterize the initial steps of the PAD4 reaction, in particular, the protonation status of Cys645 and His471 prior to substrate binding. The results indicate that Cys645, the active site nucleophile, exists as the thiolate in the active form of the free enzyme. pH studies on PAD4 further suggest that this enzyme utilizes a reverse protonation mechanism.