(1/5406) Carbon 13 NMR study of nonenzymatic reactions of pyridoxal 5'-phosphate with selected amino acids and of related reactions.

Carbon 13 nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy has been used to monitor the nonenzymatic reactions of pyridoxal 5'-phosphate with glycine, alanine, valine, serine, and with several other model compounds. Isotopically enriched amino acids were employed so that low concentrations could be utilized while still allowing relatively rapid acquisition of spectral data. The results for alanine and serine are particularly noteworthy in that alanine is deaminated to pyruvate and pyruvate is aminated to alanine, but contrary to the enzymatic reactions of various serine dehydratases wherein serine is converted to pyruvate, the nonenzymatic reaction utilizing serine results in hydroxypruvate rather than pyruvate formation. In the reverse reaction, hydroxypyruvate is aminated to serine but very inefficiently relative to the amination of pyruvate to alanine. The experimental results have been formulated into a proposed reaction mechanism for deamination of amino acids by pyridoxal-P.  (+info)

(2/5406) Biochemical and electrophysiological studies on the mechanism of action of PNU-151774E, a novel antiepileptic compound.

PNU-151774E [(S)-(+)-2-(4-(3-fluorobenzyloxy)benzylamino)propanamide methanesulfonate], a new anticonvulsant that displays a wide therapeutic window, has a potency comparable or superior to that of most classic anticonvulsants. PNU-151774E is chemically unrelated to current antiepileptics. In animal seizure models it possesses a broad spectrum of action. In the present study, the action mechanism of PNU-151774E has been investigated using electrophysiological and biochemical assays. Binding studies performed with rat brain membranes show that PNU-151774E has high affinity for binding site 2 of the sodium channel receptor, which is greater than that of phenytoin or lamotrigine (IC50, 8 microM versus 47 and 185 microM, respectively). PNU-151774E reduces sustained repetitive firing in a use-dependent manner without modifying the first action potential in hippocampal cultured neurons. In the same preparation PNU-151774E inhibits tetrodotoxin-sensitive fast sodium currents and high voltage-activated calcium currents under voltage-clamp conditions. These electrophysiological activities of PNU-151774E correlate with its ability to inhibit veratrine and KCl-induced glutamate release in rat hippocampal slices (IC50, 56.4 and 185.5 microM, respectively) and calcium inward currents in mouse cortical neurons. On the other hand, PNU-151774E does not affect whole-cell gamma-aminobutryic acid- and glutamate-induced currents in cultured mouse cortical neurons. These results suggest that PNU-151774E exerts its anticonvulsant activity, at least in part, through inhibition of sodium and calcium channels, stabilizing neuronal membrane excitability and inhibiting transmitter release. The possible relevance of these pharmacological properties to its antiepileptic potential is discussed.  (+info)

(3/5406) Role of glutamine in human carbohydrate metabolism in kidney and other tissues.

Glutamine is the most abundant amino acid in the human body and is involved in more metabolic processes than any other amino acid. Until recently, the understanding of many aspects of glutamine metabolism was based on animal and in vitro data. However, recent studies using isotopic and balance techniques have greatly advanced the understanding of glutamine metabolism in humans and its role in glucose metabolism in the kidney and other tissues. There is now evidence that in postabsorptive humans, glutamine is an important glucose precursor and makes a significant contribution to the addition of new carbon to the glucose carbon pool. The importance of alanine for gluconeogenesis, viewed in terms of the addition of new carbons, is less than previously assumed. It appears that glutamine is predominantly a renal gluconeogenic substrate, whereas alanine gluconeogenesis is essentially confined to the liver. As shown recently, renal gluconeogenesis contributes 20 to 25% to whole-body glucose production. Moreover, glutamine has been shown not only to stimulate net muscle glycogen storage but also to stimulate gluconeogenesis in normal humans. Finally, in humans with type II diabetes, conversion of glutamine to glucose is increased (more so than that of alanine). The available evidence on the hormonal regulation of glutamine gluconeogenesis in kidney and liver and its alterations under pathological conditions are discussed.  (+info)

(4/5406) Structural determinants of the eosinophil: chemotactic activity of the acidic tetrapeptides of eosinophil chemotactic factor of anaphylaxis.

The acidic tetrapeptides of ECF-A, Ala/Val-Gly-Ser-Glu, exhibit peak in vitro chemotactic activity for human eosinophils at concentrations of 3 X 10(-8) M to 10(-6) M, and rapidly deactivate eosinophils to homologous and other stimuli at concentrations as low as 10(-10) M. The analogue Leu-Gly-Ser-Glu reaches peak activity at 10(-8)M-10(-7)M, while Phe-Gly-Ser-Glu requires 10(-4)M to elicit a peak response. Although inversion of the order of glycine and serine does not alter the eosinophil chemotactic activity of the tetrapeptides, deletion of glycine increases by 10-fold the concentration required for peak chemotactic activity, indicating the critical nature of the spacing between NH2- and COOH-terminal residues. The substituent COOH-terminal tripeptide, which is only marginally chemotactic, irreversibly suppresses eosinophil chemotactic responsiveness at a concentration 10,000-fold higher than concentrations necessary for deactivation by the intact tetrapeptide. The high concentration of tripeptide required for this cell directed effect, which is assumed to be analogous to deactivation, is attributed to the absence of the NH2-terminal residue which would facilitate effective interaction with the eosinophil. A substituent NH2-terminal tripeptide and amides of the NH2-terminal amino acids, which are devoid of chemotactic and deactivating activities, reversibly inhibit the tetrapeptide stimulus in a dose-response fashion. The additional finding that the NH2-terminal tripeptide protects the eosinophil from deactivation by the intact tetrapeptide confirms that the competitive interaction is stimulus specific.  (+info)

(5/5406) Variants of ribonuclease inhibitor that resist oxidation.

Human ribonuclease inhibitor (hRI) is a cytosolic protein that protects cells from the adventitious invasion of pancreatic-type ribonucleases. hRI has 32 cysteine residues. The oxidation of these cysteine residues to form disulfide bonds is a rapid, cooperative process that inactivates hRI. The most proximal cysteine residues in native hRI are two pairs that are adjacent in sequence: Cys94 and Cys95, and Cys328 and Cys329. A cystine formed from such adjacent cysteine residues would likely contain a perturbing cis peptide bond within its eight-membered ring, which would disrupt the structure of hRI and could facilitate further oxidation. We find that replacing Cys328 and Cys329 with alanine residues has little effect on the affinity of hRI for bovine pancreatic ribonuclease A (RNase A), but increases its resistance to oxidation by 10- to 15-fold. Similar effects are observed for the single variants, C328A hRI and C329A hRI, suggesting that oxidation resistance arises from the inability to form a Cys328-Cys329 disulfide bond. Replacing Cys94 and Cys95 with alanine residues increases oxidation resistance to a lesser extent, and decreases the affinity of hRI for RNase A. The C328A, C329A, and C328A/C329A variants are likely to be more useful than wild-type hRI for inhibiting pancreatic-type ribonucleases in vitro and in vivo. We conclude that replacing adjacent cysteine residues can confer oxidation resistance in a protein.  (+info)

(6/5406) Multiplex sequence analysis demonstrates the competitive growth advantage of the A-to-G mutants of clarithromycin-resistant Helicobacter pylori.

Clarithromycin resistance in Helicobacter pylori is due to point mutation within the 23S rRNA. We examined the growth rates of different types of site-directed mutants and demonstrated quantitatively the competitive growth advantage of A-to-G mutants over other types of mutants by a multiplex sequencing assay. The results provide a rational explanation of why A-to-G mutants are predominantly observed among clarithromycin-resistant clinical isolates.  (+info)

(7/5406) The Escherichia coli Ada protein can interact with two distinct determinants in the sigma70 subunit of RNA polymerase according to promoter architecture: identification of the target of Ada activation at the alkA promoter.

The methylated form of the Ada protein (meAda) activates transcription from the Escherichia coli ada, aidB, and alkA promoters with different mechanisms. In this study we identify amino acid substitutions in region 4 of the RNA polymerase subunit sigma70 that affect Ada-activated transcription at alkA. Substitution to alanine of residues K593, K597, and R603 in sigma70 region 4 results in decreased Ada-dependent binding of RNA polymerase to the alkA promoter in vitro and impairs alkA transcription both in vivo and in vitro, suggesting that these residues define a determinant for meAda-sigma70 interaction. In a previous study (P. Landini, J. A. Bown, M. R. Volkert, and S. J. W. Busby, J. Biol. Chem. 273:13307-13312, 1998), we showed that a set of negatively charged amino acids in sigma70 region 4 is involved in meAda-sigma70 interaction at the ada and aidB promoters. However, the alanine substitutions of positively charged residues K593, K597, and R603 do not affect meAda-dependent transcription at ada and aidB. Unlike the sigma70 amino acids involved in the interaction with meAda at the ada and aidB promoters, K593, K597, and R603 are not conserved in sigmaS, an alternative sigma subunit of RNA polymerase mainly expressed during the stationary phase of growth. While meAda is able to promote transcription by the sigmaS form of RNA polymerase (EsigmaS) at ada and aidB, it fails to do so at alkA. We propose that meAda can activate transcription at different promoters by contacting distinct determinants in sigma70 region 4 in a manner dependent on the location of the Ada binding site.  (+info)

(8/5406) CPCCOEt, a noncompetitive metabotropic glutamate receptor 1 antagonist, inhibits receptor signaling without affecting glutamate binding.

Metabotropic glutamate receptors (mGluRs) are a family of G protein-coupled receptors characterized by a large, extracellular N-terminal domain comprising the glutamate-binding site. In the current study, we examined the pharmacological profile and site of action of the non-amino-acid antagonist 7-hydroxyiminocyclopropan[b]chromen-1a-carboxylic acid ethyl ester (CPCCOEt). CPCCOEt selectively inhibited glutamate-induced increases in intracellular calcium at human mGluR1b (hmGluR1b) with an apparent IC50 of 6.5 microM while having no agonist or antagonist activity at hmGluR2, -4a, -5a, -7b, and -8a up to 100 microM. Schild analysis indicated that CPCCOEt acts in a noncompetitive manner by decreasing the efficacy of glutamate-stimulated phosphoinositide hydrolysis without affecting the EC50 value or Hill coefficient of glutamate. Similarly, CPCCOEt did not displace [3H]glutamate binding to membranes prepared from mGluR1a-expressing cells. To elucidate the site of action, we systematically exchanged segments and single amino acids between hmGluR1b and the related subtype, hmGluR5a. Substitution of Thr815 and Ala818, located at the extracellular surface of transmembrane segment VII, with the homologous amino acids of hmGluR5a eliminated CPCCOEt inhibition of hmGluR1b. In contrast, introduction of Thr815 and Ala818 at the homologous positions of hmGluR5a conferred complete inhibition by CPCCOEt (IC50 = 6.6 microM), i.e., a gain of function. These data suggest that CPCCOEt represents a novel class of G protein-coupled receptor antagonists inhibiting receptor signaling without affecting ligand binding. We propose that the interaction of CPCCOEt with Thr815 and Ala818 of mGluR1 disrupts receptor activation by inhibiting an intramolecular interaction between the agonist-bound extracellular domain and the transmembrane domain.  (+info)