A p-loop motif and two basic regions in the regulatory protein GvpD are important for the repression of gas vesicle formation in the archaeon Haloferax mediterranei.
DeltaD transformants containing all 14 gvp genes of Haloferax mediterranei required for gas vesicle formation except for gvpD are gas vesicle overproducers (Vac(++)), whereas DeltaD/D transformants containing the gvpD reading frame under ferredoxin promoter control on a second construct in addition to DeltaD did not form gas vesicles (Vac(-)). The amino acid sequence of GvpD indicates three interesting regions (a putative nucleotide-binding site called the p-loop motif, and two basic regions); these were altered by mutation, and the resulting GvpD(mut) proteins tested in DeltaD/D(mut) transformants for their ability to repress gas vesicle formation. The exchange of amino acids at conserved positions in the p-loop motif resulted in Vac(++) DeltaD/D(mut) transformants, indicating that these GvpD(mut) proteins were unable to repress gas vesicle formation. In contrast, a GvpD(mut) protein with an alteration of a non-conserved proline in the p-loop region (P41A) was still able to repress. The repressing function of the various GvpD proteins was also investigated at the promoter level of the gvpA gene. This promoter is only activated during the stationary phase, depending on the transcriptional activator protein GvpE. Whereas the Vac(++) DeltaD transformants contained very high amounts of gvpA mRNA predominantly in the stationary growth phase, the amount of this transcript was significantly reduced in the Vac(-) transformants DeltaD/D and DeltaD/D(P41A). In contrast, the Vac(++) DeltaD/D(mut) transformants harbouring GvpD(mut) with mutations at conserved positions in the p-loop motif contained large amounts of gvpA mRNA already during exponential growth, suggesting that this motif is important for the GvpD repressor function during this growth phase. The GvpD mutants containing mutations in the two basic regions were mostly defective in the repressing function. The GvpD(mut) protein containing an exchange of the three arginine residues 494RRR496 to alanine residues was able to repress gas vesicle formation. No gvpA mRNA was detectable in this transformant, demonstrating that this GvpD protein was acting as a strong repressor. All these results imply that the GvpD protein is able to prevent the GvpE-mediated gvpA promoter activation, and that the p-loop motif as well as the two basic regions are important for this function. (+info)
Individual gvp transcript segments in Haloferax mediterranei exhibit varying half-lives, which are differentially affected by salt concentration and growth phase.
The mc-gvp genes for gas vesicle formation in Haloferax mediterranei are transcribed from two promoters located in front of the mc-gvpA and mc-gvpD genes. The different transcripts originating from both promoters show different abundances dependent on salt concentration in the medium and growth phase. Here we show that the half-lives of these transcripts differ significantly and that the small gvp transcripts exhibit higher stabilities than the larger gvp transcripts. While the stability of most gvp transcripts is independent of the salt concentration in the medium, the gvpA mRNA decays about twice as fast in cultures grown at 18% salt compared to cultures grown at 25% salt. The stability of the 0.45 kb transcript population derived from the 5' part of the gvpD gene depends on the growth phase of the culture. Thus, differences in mRNA stability contribute to the salt-dependent and growth phase-dependent abundance of gvp transcripts. This implies that, like in bacteria and eukarya, mRNA processing contributes to regulated gene expression in archaea. (+info)
NMR studies of a ferredoxin from Haloferax mediterranei and its physiological role in nitrate assimilatory pathway.
Haloferax mediterranei is a halophilic archaeon that can grow in aerobic conditions with nitrate as sole nitrogen source. The electron donor in the aerobic nitrate reduction to ammonium was a ferredoxin. This ferredoxin has been purified and characterised. Air-oxidized H. mediterranei ferredoxin has a UV-visible absorption spectra typical of 2Fe-type ferredoxins with an A420/A280 of 0.21. The nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectra of the ferredoxin showed similarity to those of ferredoxins from plant and bacteria, containing a [2Fe-2S] cluster. The physiological function of ferredoxin might be to serve as an electron donor for nitrate reduction to ammonium by assimilatory nitrate (EC 22.214.171.124) and nitrite reductases (EC 126.96.36.199). The apparent molecular weight (Mr) of the ferredoxin was estimated to be 21 kDa on SDS-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis (SDS-PAGE). (+info)
Respiratory nitrate reductase from haloarchaeon Haloferax mediterranei: biochemical and genetic analysis.
The Haloferax mediterranei nar operon has been sequenced and its regulation has been characterized at transcriptional level. The nar operon encodes seven open reading frames(ORFs) (ORF1 narB, narC, ORF4, narG, narH, ORF7 and narJ). ORF1, ORF4 and ORF7 are open reading frames with no assigned function, however the rest of them encoded different proteins. narB codes for a 219-amino-acid-residue iron Rieske protein. narC encodes a protein of 486 amino acid residues identified by databases searches as cytochrome-b (narC). The narG gene encodes a protein with 983 amino acid residues and is identified as a respiratory nitrate reductase catalytic subunit (narG). NarH protein has been identified as an electron transfer respiratory nitrate reductase subunit (narH). The last ORF encodes a chaperonin-like protein (narJ) of 242 amino acid residues. The respiratory nitrate reductase was purified 21-fold from H. mediterranei membranes. Based on SDS-PAGE and gel-filtration chromatography under native conditions, the enzyme complex consists of two subunits of 112 and 61 kDa. The optimum temperature for activity was 70 degrees C at 3.4 M NaCl and the stability did not show a direct dependence on salt concentration. Respiratory nitrate reductase showed maximum activity at pH 7.9 and pH 8.2 when assays were carried out at 40 and 60 degrees C, respectively. The absorption spectrum indicated that Nar contains Fe-S clusters. Reverse transcriptase (RT-PCR) shows that regulation of nar genes occurs at transcriptional level induced by oxygen-limiting conditions and the presence of nitrate. (+info)
In vivo analyses of constitutive and regulated promoters in halophilic archaea.
The two gvpA promoters P(cA) and P(pA) of Halobacterium salinarum, and the P(mcA) promoter of Haloferax mediterranei were investigated with respect to growth-phase-dependent expression and regulation in Haloferax volcanii transformants using the bgaH reading frame encoding BgaH, an enzyme with beta-galactosidase activity, as reporter. For comparison, the P(fdx) promoter of the ferredoxin gene of Hbt. salinarum and the P(bgaH) promoter of Haloferax lucentense (formerly Haloferax alicantei) were analysed. P(fdx), driving the expression of a house-keeping gene, was highly active during the exponential growth phase, whereas P(bgaH) and the three gvpA promoters yielded the largest activities during the stationary growth phase. Compared to P(fdx), the basal promoter activities of P(pA) and P(mcA) were rather low, and larger activities were only detected in the presence of the endogenous transcriptional activator protein GvpE. The P(cA) promoter does not yield a detectable basal promoter activity and is only active in the presence of the homologous cGvpE. To investigate whether the P(cA)-TATA box and the BRE element were the reason for the lack of the basal P(cA) activity, these elements and also sequences further upstream were substituted with the respective sequences of the stronger P(pA) promoter and investigated in Hfx. volcanii transformants. All these promoter chimera did not yield a detectable basal promoter activity. However, whenever the P(pA)-BRE element was substituted for the P(cA)-BRE, an enhanced cGvpE-mediated activation was observed. The promoter chimeras harbouring P(pA)-BRE plus 5 (or more) bp further upstream also gained activation by the heterologous pGvpE and mcGvpE proteins. The sequence required for the GvpE-mediated activation was determined by a 4 bp scanning mutagenesis with the 45 bp region upstream of P(mcA)-BRE. None of these alterations influenced the basal promoter activity, but the sequence TGAAACGG-n4-TGAACCAA was important for the GvpE-mediated activation of P(mcA). (+info)
Crystallization and preliminary X-ray analysis of binary and ternary complexes of Haloferax mediterranei glucose dehydrogenase.
Haloferax mediterranei glucose dehydrogenase (EC 188.8.131.52) belongs to the medium-chain alcohol dehydrogenase superfamily and requires zinc for catalysis. In the majority of these family members, the catalytic zinc is tetrahedrally coordinated by the side chains of a cysteine, a histidine, a cysteine or glutamate and a water molecule. In H. mediterranei glucose dehydrogenase, sequence analysis indicates that the zinc coordination is different, with the invariant cysteine replaced by an aspartate residue. In order to analyse the significance of this replacement and to contribute to an understanding of the role of the metal ion in catalysis, a range of binary and ternary complexes of the wild-type and a D38C mutant protein have been crystallized. For most of the complexes, crystals belonging to space group I222 were obtained using sodium/potassium citrate as a precipitant. However, for the binary and non-productive ternary complexes with NADPH/Zn, it was necessary to replace the citrate with 2-methyl-2,4-pentanediol. Despite the radical change in conditions, the crystals thus formed were isomorphous. (+info)
Analysis of protein solvent interactions in glucose dehydrogenase from the extreme halophile Haloferax mediterranei.
The structure of glucose dehydrogenase from the extreme halophile Haloferax mediterranei has been solved at 1.6-A resolution under crystallization conditions which closely mimic the "in vivo" intracellular environment. The decoration of the enzyme's surface with acidic residues is only partially neutralized by bound potassium counterions, which also appear to play a role in substrate binding. The surface shows the expected reduction in hydrophobic character, surprisingly not from changes associated with the loss of exposed hydrophobic residues but rather arising from a loss of lysines consistent with the genome wide-reduction of this residue in extreme halophiles. The structure reveals a highly ordered, multilayered solvation shell that can be seen to be organized into one dominant network covering much of the exposed surface accessible area to an extent not seen in almost any other protein structure solved. This finding is consistent with the requirement of the enzyme to form a protective shell in a dehydrating environment. (+info)
A new D-2-hydroxyacid dehydrogenase with dual coenzyme-specificity from Haloferax mediterranei, sequence analysis and heterologous overexpression.
A gene encoding a new D-2-hydroxyacid dehydrogenase (E.C. 1.1.1.) from the halophilic Archaeon Haloferax mediterranei has been sequenced, cloned and expressed in Escherichia coli cells with the inducible expression plasmid pET3a. The nucleotide sequence analysis showed an open reading frame of 927 bp which encodes a 308 amino acid protein. Multiple amino acid sequence alignments of the D-2-hydroxyacid dehydrogenase from H. mediterranei showed high homology with D-2-hydroxyacid dehydrogenases from different organisms and other enzymes of this family. Analysis of the amino acid sequence showed catalytic residues conserved in hydroxyacid dehydrogenases with d-stereospecificity. In the reductive reaction, the enzyme showed broad substrate specificity, although alpha-ketoisoleucine was the most favourable of all alpha-ketocarboxylic acids tested. Kinetic data revealed that this new D-2-hydroxyacid dehydrogenase from H. mediterranei exhibits dual coenzyme-specificity, using both NADPH and NADH as coenzymes. To date, all D-2-hydroxyacid dehydrogenases have been found to be NADH-dependent. Here, we report the first example of a D-2-hydroxyacid dehydrogenase with dual coenzyme-specificity. (+info)