Arginine methylation and binding of Hrp1p to the efficiency element for mRNA 3'-end formation. (1/3483)

Hrp1p is a heterogeneous ribonucleoprotein (hnRNP) from the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae that is involved in the cleavage and polyadenylation of the 3'-end of mRNAs and mRNA export. In addition, Hrplp is one of several RNA-binding proteins that are posttranslationally modified by methylation at arginine residues. By using functional recombinant Hrp1p, we have identified RNA sequences with specific high affinity binding sites. These sites correspond to the efficiency element for mRNA 3'-end formation, UAUAUA. To examine the effect of methylation on specific RNA binding, purified recombinant arginine methyltransferase (Hmt1p) was used to methylate Hrp1p. Methylated Hrp1p binds with the same affinity to UAUAUA-containing RNAs as unmethylated Hrpl p indicating that methylation does not affect specific RNA binding. However, RNA itself inhibits the methylation of Hrp1p and this inhibition is enhanced by RNAs that specifically bind Hrpl p. Taken together, these data support a model in which protein methylation occurs prior to protein-RNA binding in the nucleus.  (+info)

A family of S-methylmethionine-dependent thiol/selenol methyltransferases. Role in selenium tolerance and evolutionary relation. (2/3483)

Several plant species can tolerate high concentrations of selenium in the environment, and they accumulate organoselenium compounds. One of these compounds is Se-methylselenocysteine, synthesized by a number of species from the genus Astragalus (Fabaceae), like A. bisulcatus. An enzyme has been previously isolated from this organism that catalyzes methyl transfer from S-adenosylmethionine to selenocysteine. To elucidate the role of the enzyme in selenium tolerance, the cDNA coding for selenocysteine methyltransferase from A. bisulcatus was cloned and sequenced. Data base searches revealed the existence of several apparent homologs of hitherto unassigned function. The gene for one of them, yagD from Escherichia coli, was cloned, and the protein was overproduced and purified. A functional analysis showed that the YagD protein catalyzes methylation of homocysteine, selenohomocysteine, and selenocysteine with S-adenosylmethionine and S-methylmethionine as methyl group donors. S-Methylmethionine was now shown to be also the physiological methyl group donor for the A. bisulcatus selenocysteine methyltransferase. A model system was set up in E. coli which demonstrated that expression of the plant and, although to a much lesser degree, of the bacterial methyltransferase gene increases selenium tolerance and strongly reduces unspecific selenium incorporation into proteins, provided that S-methylmethionine is present in the medium. It is postulated that the selenocysteine methyltransferase under selective pressure developed from an S-methylmethionine-dependent thiol/selenol methyltransferase.  (+info)

mRNA guanylyltransferase and mRNA (guanine-7-)-methyltransferase from vaccinia virions. Donor and acceptor substrate specificites. (3/3483)

Characterization of the donor and acceptor specificities of mRNA guanylyltransferase and mRNA (guanine-7-)-methyltransferase isolated from vaccinia virus cores has enabled us to discriminate between alternative reaction sequences leading to the formation of the 5'-terminal m7G(5')pppN-structure. The mRNA guanylyltransferase catalyzes the transfer of a residue of GMP from GTP to acceptors which possess a 5'-terminal diphosphate. A diphosphate-terminated polyribonucleotide is preferred to a mononucleoside diphosphate as an acceptor suggesting that the guanylyltransferase reaction occurs after initiation of RNA synthesis. Although all of the homopolyribonucleotides tested (pp(A)n, pp(G)n, pp(I)n, pp(U)n, and pp(C)n) are acceptors for the mRNA guanylyltransferase indicating lack of strict sequence specificity, those containing purines are preferred. Only GTP and dGTP are donors in the reaction; 7-methylguanosine (m7G) triphosphate specifically is not a donor indicating that guanylylation must precede guanine-7-methylation. The preferred acceptor of the mRNA (guanine-7-)-methyltransferase is the product of the guanylyltransferase reaction, a polyribonucleotide with the 5'-terminal sequence G(5')pppN-. The enzyme can also catalyze, but less efficiently methylation of the following: dinucleoside triphosphates with the structure G(5')pppN, GTP, dGTP, ITP, GDP, GMP, and guanosine. The enzyme will not catalyze the transfer of methyl groups to ATP, XTP, CTP, UTP, or to guanosine-containing compounds with phosphate groups in either positions 2' or 3' or in 3'-5' phosphodiester linkages. The latter specificity provides an explanation for the absence of internal 7-methylguanosine in mRNA. In the presence of PPi, the mRNA guanylyltransferase catalyzes the pyrophosphorolysis of the dinucleoside triphosphate G(5')pppA, but not of m7G(5')pppA. Since PPi is generated in the process of RNA chain elongation, stabilization of the 5'-terminal sequences of mRNA is afforded by guanine-7-methylation.  (+info)

Molecular characterization of the nitrite-reducing system of Staphylococcus carnosus. (4/3483)

Characterization of a nitrite reductase-negative Staphylococcus carnosus Tn917 mutant led to the identification of the nir operon, which encodes NirBD, the dissimilatory NADH-dependent nitrite reductase; SirA, the putative oxidase and chelatase, and SirB, the uroporphyrinogen III methylase, both of which are necessary for biosynthesis of the siroheme prosthetic group; and NirR, which revealed no convincing similarity to proteins with known functions. We suggest that NirR is essential for nir promoter activity. In the absence of NirR, a weak promoter upstream of sirA seems to drive transcription of sirA, nirB, nirD, and sirB in the stationary-growth phase. In primer extension experiments one predominant and several weaker transcription start sites were identified in the nir promoter region. Northern blot analyses indicated that anaerobiosis and nitrite are induction factors of the nir operon: cells grown aerobically with nitrite revealed small amounts of full-length transcript whereas cells grown anaerobically with or without nitrite showed large amounts of full-length transcript. Although a transcript is detectable, no nitrite reduction occurs in cells grown aerobically with nitrite, indicating an additional oxygen-controlled step at the level of translation, enzyme folding, assembly, or insertion of prosthetic groups. The nitrite-reducing activity expressed during anaerobiosis is switched off reversibly when the oxygen tension increases, most likely due to competition for electrons with the aerobic respiratory chain. Another gene, nirC, is located upstream of the nir operon. nirC encodes a putative integral membrane-spanning protein of unknown function. A nirC mutant showed no distinct phenotype.  (+info)

The role of Saccharomyces cerevisiae Met1p and Met8p in sirohaem and cobalamin biosynthesis. (5/3483)

MET1 and MET8 mutants of Saccharomyces cerevisiae can be complemented by Salmonella typhimurium cysG, indicating that the genes are involved in the transformation of uroporphyrinogen III into sirohaem. In the present study, we have demonstrated complementation of defined cysG mutants of Sal. typhimurium and Escherichia coli, with either MET1 or MET8 cloned in tandem with Pseudomonas denitrificans cobA. The conclusion drawn from these experiments is that MET1 encodes the S-adenosyl-l-methionine uroporphyrinogen III transmethylase activity, and MET8 encodes the dehydrogenase and chelatase activities (all three functions are encoded by Sal. typhimurium and E. coli cysG). MET8 was further cloned into pET14b to allow expression of the protein with an N-terminal His-tag. After purification, the functions of the His-tagged Met8p were studied in vitro by assay with precorrin-2 in the presence of NAD+ and Co2+. The results demonstrated that Met8p acts as a dehydrogenase and chelatase in the biosynthesis of sirohaem. Moreover, despite the fact that S. cerevisiae does not make cobalamins de novo, we have shown also that MET8 is able to complement cobalamin cobaltochelatase mutants and have revealed a subtle difference in the early stages of the anaerobic cobalamin biosynthetic pathways between Sal. typhimurium and Bacillus megaterium.  (+info)

Cloning and characterization of chemotaxis genes in Pseudomonas aeruginosa. (6/3483)

Two chemotaxis-defective mutants of Pseudomonas aeruginosa, designated PC3 and PC4, were selected by the swarm plate method after N-methyl-N'-nitro-N-nitrosoguanidine mutagenesis. These mutants were not complemented by the P. aeruginosa cheY and cheZ genes, which had been previously cloned (Masduki et al., J. Bacteriol., 177, 948-952, 1995). DNA sequences downstream of the cheY and cheZ genes were able to complement PC3 but not PC4. Sequence analysis of a 9.7-kb region directly downstream of the cheZ gene found three chemotaxis genes, cheA, cheB, and cheW, and seven unknown open reading frames (ORFs). The predicted translation products of the cheA, cheB, and cheW genes showed 33, 36, and 31% amino acid identity with Escherichia coli CheA, CheB, and CheW, respectively. Two of the unknown ORFs, ORF1 and ORF2, encoded putative polypeptides that resembled Bacillus subtilis MotA (40% amino acid identity) and MotB (34% amino acid identity) proteins, respectively. Although P. aeruginosa was found to have proteins similar to the enteric chemotaxis proteins CheA, CheB, CheW, CheY, and CheZ, the gene encoding a CheR homologue did not reside in the chemotaxis gene cluster. The P. aeruginosa cheR gene could be cloned by phenotypic complementation of the PC4 mutant. This gene was located at least 1,800 kb away from the chemotaxis gene cluster and encoded a putative polypeptide that had 32% amino acid identity with E. coli CheR.  (+info)

Interaction between dietary methionine and methyl donor intake on rat liver betaine-homocysteine methyltransferase gene expression and organization of the human gene. (7/3483)

We previously showed that rat liver betaine-homocysteine methyltransferase (BHMT) mRNA content and activity increased 4-fold when rats were fed a methionine-deficient diet containing adequate choline, compared with rats fed the same diet with control levels of methionine (Park, E. I., Renduchintala, M. S., and Garrow, T. A. (1997) J. Nutr. Biochem. 8, 541-545). A further 2-fold increase was observed in rats fed the methionine-deficient diet with supplemental betaine. The nutrition studies reported here were designed to determine whether other methyl donors would induce rat liver BHMT gene expression when added to a methionine-deficient diet and to define the relationship between the degree of methionine restriction and level of methyl donor intake on BHMT expression. Therefore, rats were fed amino acid-defined diets varying in methionine and methyl donor composition. The effect of diet on BHMT expression was evaluated using Northern, Western, and enzyme activity analyses. Similar to when betaine was added to a methionine-deficient diet, choline or sulfonium analogs of betaine induced BHMT expression. The diet-induced induction of hepatic BHMT activity was mediated by increases in the steady-state level of its mRNA and immunodetectable protein. Using methyl donor-free diets, we found that methionine restriction was required but alone not sufficient for the high induction of BHMT expression. Concomitant with methionine restriction, dietary methyl groups were required for high levels of BHMT induction, and a dose-dependent relationship was observed between methyl donor intake and BHMT induction. Furthermore, the severity of methionine restriction influenced the magnitude of BHMT induction. To study the molecular mechanisms that regulate the expression of BHMT, we have cloned the human BHMT gene. This gene spans about 20 kilobases of DNA and contains 8 exons and 7 introns. Using RNA isolated from human liver and hepatoma cells, a major transcriptional start site has been mapped using the 5' rapid amplification of cDNA ends technique, and this start site is 26 nucleotides downstream from a putative TATA box.  (+info)

Expression of Batis maritima methyl chloride transferase in Escherichia coli. (8/3483)

Methyl chloride transferase, a novel enzyme found in several fungi, marine algae, and halophytic plants, is a biological catalyst responsible for the production of atmospheric methyl chloride. A previous paper reports the purification of this methylase from Batis maritima and the isolation of a cDNA clone of the gene for this enzyme. In this paper, we describe the isolation of a genomic clone of the methylase gene and the expression of recombinant methyl chloride transferase in Escherichia coli and compare the kinetic behavior of the wild-type and recombinant enzyme. The recombinant enzyme is active and promotes the production of methyl chloride by E. coli under in vivo conditions. The kinetic data indicate that the recombinant and wild-type enzymes have similar halide (Cl-, Br-, and I-)-binding capacities. Both the recombinant and wild-type enzymes were found to function well in high NaCl concentrations. This high salt tolerance resembles the activity of halobacterial enzymes rather than halophytic plant enzymes. These findings support the hypothesis that this enzyme functions in the control and regulation of the internal concentration of chloride ions in halophytic plant cells.  (+info)