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(1/4423) Probing interactions between HIV-1 reverse transcriptase and its DNA substrate with backbone-modified nucleotides.

BACKGROUND: To gain a molecular understanding of a biochemical process, the crystal structure of enzymes that catalyze the reactions involved is extremely helpful. Often the question arises whether conformations obtained in this way appropriately reflect the reactivity of enzymes, however. Rates that characterize transitions are therefore compulsory experiments for the elucidation of the reaction mechanism. Such experiments have been performed for the reverse transcriptase of the type 1 human immunodeficiency virus (HIV-1 RT). RESULTS: We have developed a methodology to monitor the interplay between HIV-1 RT and its DNA substrate. To probe the protein-DNA interactions, the sugar backbone of one nucleotide was modified by a substituent that influenced the efficiency of the chain elongation in a characteristic way. We found that strand elongation after incorporation of the modified nucleotide follows a discontinuous efficiency for the first four nucleotides. The reaction efficiencies could be correlated with the distance between the sugar substituent and the enzyme. The model was confirmed by kinetic experiments with HIV-1 RT mutants. CONCLUSIONS: Experiments with HIV-1 RT demonstrate that strand-elongation efficiency using a modified nucleotide correlates well with distances between the DNA substrate and the enzyme. The functional group at the modified nucleotides acts as an 'antenna' for steric interactions that changes the optimal transition state. Kinetic experiments in combination with backbone-modified nucleotides can therefore be used to gain structural information about reverse transcriptases and DNA polymerases.  (+info)

(2/4423) A novel nucleotide incorporation activity implicated in the editing of mitochondrial transfer RNAs in Acanthamoeba castellanii.

In Acanthamoeba castellanii, most of the mtDNA-encoded tRNAs are edited by a process that replaces one or more of the first three nucleotides at their 5' ends. As a result, base pairing potential is restored at acceptor stem positions (1:72, 2:71, and/or 3:70, in standard tRNA nomenclature) that are mismatched according to the corresponding tRNA gene sequence. Here we describe a novel nucleotide incorporation activity, partially purified from A. castellanii mitochondria, that has properties implicating it in mitochondrial tRNA editing in this organism. This activity is able to replace nucleotides at the first three positions of a tRNA (positions 1, 2, and 3), matching the newly incorporated residues through canonical base pairing to the respective partner nucleotide in the 3' half of the acceptor stem. Labeling experiments with natural (Escherichia coli tRNATyr) and synthetic (run-off transcripts corresponding to A. castellanii mitochondrial tRNALeu1) substrates suggest that the nucleotide incorporation activity consists of at least two components, a 5' exonuclease or endonuclease and a template-directed 3'-to-5' nucleotidyltransferase. The nucleotidyltransferase component displays an ATP requirement and generates 5' pppN... termini in vitro. The development of an accurate and efficient in vitro system opens the way for detailed studies of the biochemical properties of this novel activity and its relationship to mitochondrial tRNA editing in A. castellanii. In addition, the system will allow delineation of the structural features in a tRNA that identify it as a substrate for the labeling activity.  (+info)

(3/4423) Nucleoside-3'-phosphotriesters as key intermediates for the oligoribonucleotide synthesis. III. An improved preparation of nucleoside 3'-phosphotriesters, their 1H NMR characterization and new conditions for removal of 2-cyanoethyl group.

An improved procedure for the transformation of 5'-O-monomethoxytrityl-2'-O-acetyl-3'-phosphates of uridine la, inosine ib and 6-N-benzoyladenosine lc into corresponding 3'/2,2,2-trichloroethyl, 2-cyanoethyl/-phosphates iiaic is reported. H NMR characterization of nucleoside 3'-phosphotriesters is presented. New conditions i.e. anhydrous triethylamine-pyridine treatment have been found for the selective removal of 2-cyanoethyl group from nucleoside 3'-phosphotriesters in the presence of neighbouring 2'-O-acetyl one.  (+info)

(4/4423) Crystal structure of deoxycytidylate hydroxymethylase from bacteriophage T4, a component of the deoxyribonucleoside triphosphate-synthesizing complex.

Bacteriophage T4 deoxycytidylate hydroxymethylase (EC 2.1.2.8), a homodimer of 246-residue subunits, catalyzes hydroxymethylation of the cytosine base in deoxycytidylate (dCMP) to produce 5-hydroxymethyl-dCMP. It forms part of a phage DNA protection system and appears to function in vivo as a component of a multienzyme complex called deoxyribonucleoside triphosphate (dNTP) synthetase. We have determined its crystal structure in the presence of the substrate dCMP at 1.6 A resolution. The structure reveals a subunit fold and a dimerization pattern in common with thymidylate synthases, despite low (approximately 20%) sequence identity. Among the residues that form the dCMP binding site, those interacting with the sugar and phosphate are arranged in a configuration similar to the deoxyuridylate binding site of thymidylate synthases. However, the residues interacting directly or indirectly with the cytosine base show a more divergent structure and the presumed folate cofactor binding site is more open. Our structure reveals a water molecule properly positioned near C-6 of cytosine to add to the C-7 methylene intermediate during the last step of hydroxymethylation. On the basis of sequence comparison and crystal packing analysis, a hypothetical model for the interaction between T4 deoxycytidylate hydroxymethylase and T4 thymidylate synthase in the dNTP-synthesizing complex has been built.  (+info)

(5/4423) P1 ParA interacts with the P1 partition complex at parS and an ATP-ADP switch controls ParA activities.

The partition system of P1 plasmids is composed of two proteins, ParA and ParB, and a cis-acting site parS. parS is wrapped around ParB and Escherichia coli IHF protein in a higher order nucleoprotein complex called the partition complex. ParA is an ATPase that autoregulates the expression of the par operon and has an essential but unknown function in the partition process. In this study we demonstrate a direct interaction between ParA and the P1 partition complex. The interaction was strictly dependent on ParB and ATP. The consequence of this interaction depended on the ParB concentration. At high ParB levels, ParA was recruited to the partition complex via a ParA-ParB interaction, but at low ParB levels, ParA removed or disassembled ParB from the partition complex. ADP could not support these interactions, but could promote the site-specific DNA binding activity of ParA to parOP, the operator of the par operon. Conversely, ATP could not support a stable interaction of ParA with parOP in this assay. Our data suggest that ParA-ADP is the repressor of the par operon, and ParA-ATP, by interacting with the partition complex, plays a direct role in partition. Therefore, one role of adenine nucleotide binding and hydrolysis by ParA is that of a molecular switch controlling entry into two separate pathways in which ParA plays different roles.  (+info)

(6/4423) Enzyme-mononucleotide interactions: three different folds share common structural elements for ATP recognition.

Three ATP-dependent enzymes with different folds, cAMP-dependent protein kinase, D-Ala:D-Ala ligase and the alpha-subunit of the alpha2beta2 ribonucleotide reductase, have a similar organization of their ATP-binding sites. The most meaningful similarity was found over 23 structurally equivalent residues in each protein and includes three strands each from their beta-sheets, in addition to a connecting loop. The equivalent secondary structure elements in each of these enzymes donate four amino acids forming key hydrogen bonds responsible for the common orientation of the "AMP" moieties of their ATP-ligands. One lysine residue conserved throughout the three families binds the alpha-phosphate in each protein. The common fragments of structure also position some, but not all, of the equivalent residues involved in hydrophobic contacts with the adenine ring. These examples of convergent evolution reinforce the view that different proteins can fold in different ways to produce similar structures locally, and nature can take advantage of these features when structure and function demand it, as shown here for the common mode of ATP-binding by three unrelated proteins.  (+info)

(7/4423) Dietary nucleotide supplementation raises erythrocyte 2, 3-diphosphoglycerate concentration in neonatal rats.

The present study was designed to test if dietary intake of nucleotides increases erythrocyte 2,3-diphosphoglycerate (2,3-DPG) in neonatal rats. To this end, rat pups were fed a nucleotide-supplemented formula (S, n = 14) from d 9 until d 16 after birth. The results were compared with those obtained from a group of breast-fed pups (C, n = 14) and a group of pups artificially fed with nucleotide-free formula (NS, n = 14). Neonatal weight, 2,3-DPG concentration, hematocrit (Hct) and hemoglobin concentration (Hb) were determined before the experiment (d 9) and after 7 d of treatment (d 16). In all groups, 2,3-DPG concentration was greater at d 16 than d 9, and the increase was greater in the S group than in the NS group. Alterations in neonatal weight, Hct and Hb concentration did not differ among the groups. On d 16 the 2, 3-DPG/Hb ratio, reflecting the affinity of hemoglobin for oxygen, was significantly higher in the C and S groups than in the NS group. We conclude that in neonatal rats, dietary nucleotides increase erythrocyte 2,3-DPG concentration. Studies need to be conducted in humans to assess the effect of this increase on both neonatal peripheral hemodynamics and metabolism in this species.  (+info)

(8/4423) Rapid purification of membrane extrinsic F1-domain of chloroplast ATP synthase in monodisperse form suitable for 3D-crystallization.

A new chromatographic procedure for purification of the membrane extrinsic F1-domain of chloroplast ATP synthase is presented. The purification is achieved by a single anion exchange chromatography step. Determination of the enzyme-bound nucleotides reveals only 1 mole of ADP per complex. The purified enzyme shows a latent Ca(2+)-dependent ATPase activity of 1.0 mumol.mg-1 min-1 and a Mg(2+)-dependent activity of 4.4 mumol.mg-1 .min-1. Both activities are increased up to 8-10-fold after dithiothreitol activation. Analysis of the purified F1-complex by SDS/PAGE, silver staining and immunoblotting revealed that the preparation is uncontaminated by fragmented subunits or ribulose-1,5-bisphosphate carboxylase/oxygenase. Gel filtration experiments indicate that the preparation is homogenous and monodisperse. In order to determine the solubility minimum of the purified F1-complex the isoelectric point of the preparation was calculated from pH mapping on ion exchange columns. In agreement with calculations based on the amino acid sequence, a slightly acidic pI of 5.7 was found. Using ammonium sulphate as a precipitant the purified CF1-complex could be crystallized by MicroBatch.  (+info)