(1/277) Chaperone activity with a redox switch.

Hsp33, a member of a newly discovered heat shock protein family, was found to be a very potent molecular chaperone. Hsp33 is distinguished from all other known molecular chaperones by its mode of functional regulation. Its activity is redox regulated. Hsp33 is a cytoplasmically localized protein with highly reactive cysteines that respond quickly to changes in the redox environment. Oxidizing conditions like H2O2 cause disulfide bonds to form in Hsp33, a process that leads to the activation of its chaperone function. In vitro and in vivo experiments suggest that Hsp33 protects cells from oxidants, leading us to conclude that we have found a protein family that plays an important role in the bacterial defense system toward oxidative stress.  (+info)

(2/277) SAG, a novel zinc RING finger protein that protects cells from apoptosis induced by redox agents.

SAG (sensitive to apoptosis gene) was cloned as an inducible gene by 1,10-phenanthroline (OP), a redox-sensitive compound and an apoptosis inducer. SAG encodes a novel zinc RING finger protein that consists of 113 amino acids with a calculated molecular mass of 12.6 kDa. SAG is highly conserved during evolution, with identities of 70% between human and Caenorhabditis elegans sequences and 55% between human and yeast sequences. In human tissues, SAG is ubiquitously expressed at high levels in skeletal muscles, heart, and testis. SAG is localized in both the cytoplasm and the nucleus of cells, and its gene was mapped to chromosome 3q22-24. Bacterially expressed and purified human SAG binds to zinc and copper metal ions and prevents lipid peroxidation induced by copper or a free radical generator. When overexpressed in several human cell lines, SAG protects cells from apoptosis induced by redox agents (the metal chelator OP and zinc or copper metal ions). Mechanistically, SAG appears to inhibit and/or delay metal ion-induced cytochrome c release and caspase activation. Thus, SAG is a cellular protective molecule that appears to act as an antioxidant to inhibit apoptosis induced by metal ions and reactive oxygen species.  (+info)

(3/277) MgATP-independent hydrogen evolution catalysed by nitrogenase: an explanation for the missing electron(s) in the MgADP-AlF4 transition-state complex.

When the MoFe (Kp1) and Fe (Kp2) component proteins of Klebsiella pneumoniae nitrogenase are incubated with MgADP and AlF4(-) in the presence of dithionite as a reducing agent, a stable putative transition-state complex is produced [Yousafzai and Eady (1997) Biochem. J. 326, 637-640]. Surprisingly, the EPR signal associated with reduced Kp2 is not detectable, but Kp1 retains the S=3/2 EPR signal arising from the dithionite reduced state of the MoFe cofactor centre of the protein. This is consistent with the [Fe4S4] centre of the Fe protein in the complex being oxidized, and similar observations have been made with the complex of Azotobacter vinelandii [Spee, Arendsen, Wassink, Marritt, Hagen and Haaker (1998) FEBS Lett. 432, 55-58]. No satisfactory explanation for the fate of the electrons lost by Kp2 has been forthcoming. However, we report here that during the preparation of the MgADP-AlF4 K. pneumoniae complex under argon, H2 was evolved in amounts corresponding to one half of the FeMoco content of the Kp1 (FeMoco is the likely catalytic site of nitrogenase with a composition Mo:Fe7:S9:homocitrate). This is surprising, since activity is observed during incubation in the absence of MgATP, normally regarded as being essential for nitrogenase function, and in the presence of MgADP, a strong competitive inhibitor of nitrogenase. The formation of H2 by nitrogenase in the absence of AlF4(-) was also observed in reaction mixtures containing MgADP but not MgATP. The reaction showed saturation kinetics when Kp1 was titrated with increasing amounts of Kp2 and, at saturation, the amount of H2 formed was stoichiometric with the FeMoco content of Kp1. The dependence of the rate of formation of H2 on [MgADP] was inconsistent with the activity arising from MgATP contamination. We conclude that MgATP is not obligatory for H+ reduction by nitrogenase since MgADP supports a very low rate of hydrogen evolution.  (+info)

(4/277) Expression of normal and truncated forms of human endoglin.

Endoglin is a transmembrane glycoprotein 633 residues in length expressed at the surface of endothelial cells as a disulphide-linked homodimer; the specific cysteine residues involved in endoglin dimerization are unknown. Mutations in the coding region of the endoglin gene are responsible for hereditary haemorrhagic telangiectasia type 1 (HHT1), a dominantly inherited vascular disorder. Many of these mutations, if translated, would lead to truncated forms of the protein. It is therefore of interest to assess the protein expression of different truncated forms of endoglin. Infections in vitro or in vivo with recombinant vaccinia virus, as well as transient transfections with expression vectors, were used to express normal and truncated forms of endoglin. Truncated mutants could be classified into three different groups: (1) those that did not produce stable transcripts; (2) those that produced stable transcripts but did not secrete the protein; and (3) those that secreted a soluble dimeric protein. This is the first time that a recombinant truncated form of endoglin has been found to be expressed in a soluble form. Because a chimaeric construct encoding the N-terminal sequence of platelet/endothelial cell adhesion molecule (PECAM-1) antigen fused to residues Ile281-Ala658 of endoglin also yielded a dimeric surface protein, these results suggest that cysteine residues contained within the fragment Cys330-Cys412 are involved in disulphide bond formation. Infection with vaccinia recombinants encoding an HHT1 mutation did not affect the expression of the normal endoglin, and did not reveal an association of the recombinant soluble form with the transmembrane endoglin, supporting a haploinsufficiency model for HHT1.  (+info)

(5/277) Preferential uptake and accumulation of oxidized vitamin C by THP-1 monocytic cells.

THP-1 cells preferentially accumulate vitamin C in its oxidized form. The uptake displays first-order kinetics and leads to a build-up of an outward concentration gradient which is stable in the absence of extracellular vitamin. The transport is faster than reduction by extracellular glutathione or by added cytosolic extract, and glutathione-depleted cells show the same uptake rates as control cells. In addition, energy depletion or oxidation of intracellular sulfhydryls does not inhibit accumulation of ascorbate. The accumulation, however, always occurs in the reduced form. The affinity for dehydroascorbate is lower (Km 450 microM vs 60 microM) than for reduced ascorbate, but the maximal rate is more than 30 times higher (581 compared to 19 pmol.min-1 per 106 cells), and it is independent of sodium, whereas the uptake of ascorbate is not. The sodium gradient also allows accumulation of reduced ascorbate. Inhibitors of glucose transport by the GLUT-1 transporter also inhibit uptake of dehydroascorbate (DHA), but there are some inconsistencies, because the Ki-values are higher than reported for the isolated transporter and one inhibitor (deoxyglucose) is noncompetitive. The preferential uptake of the dehydro-form of the vitamin may be useful for situations where this short-lived metabolite is formed by oxidation in the environment.  (+info)

(6/277) Identification of two mannoproteins released from cell walls of a Saccharomyces cerevisiae mnn1 mnn9 double mutant by reducing agents.

In this report, we present the identification of the main polypeptides that are extracted from purified cell walls of a Saccharomyces cerevisiae mnn1 mnn9 strain by reducing agents. Treatment of the purified cell walls of this strain with beta-mercaptoethanol releases several mannoproteins, of which three, with apparent sizes of 120, 45, and 40 kDa, are the most abundant. Analysis of the amino-terminal sequences revealed that the 120-kDa mannoprotein is Bar1p, the protease involved in the so-called barrier activity in yeast cells, and that the 45- and 40-kDa mannoproteins are the Kex2-unprocessed and Kex2-processed forms of the gene product of open reading frame (ORF) YJL158c, an ORF that belongs to the PIR (protein with internal repeats) family of genes, composed thus far of PIR1, PIR2/HSP150, and PIR3. Accordingly we have named this gene PIR4, and Pir4 denotes the 40-kDa Kex2-processed form of the mannoprotein. We have characterized Pir4 and have shown the feasibility of using it as a fusion partner for the targeting of recombinant proteins to the cell wall.  (+info)

(7/277) The reductive metabolism of nitric oxide in hepatocytes: possible interaction with thiols.

Nitric oxide (NO) is both an endogenously generated species and the active species released from a variety of important drugs. Due to its endogenous generation and use as a therapeutic agent, the metabolism and fate of NO is of interest and concern. To date, most attention regarding the metabolism and fate of NO has been paid to its oxidized metabolites. Due to the reducing environment of cells, we considered that NO may also undergo reductive metabolism as well. Therefore, we have examined the reductive metabolism of NO by hepatocytes. Generation of nitrous oxide (N(2)O) was used as an indication of NO reduction. Indeed, we observed that NO could be reduced to N(2)O by the cytosolic fraction of hepatocytes. The N(2)O production was partially inhibited by the thiol modifying agent, N-ethylmaleimide and thiol consumption was observed during N(2)O formation. Thus, our results indicate that NO reduction is feasible and likely occurs via a thiol-dependent process.  (+info)

(8/277) Effects of reactive oxygen and nitrogen metabolites on MCP-1-induced monocyte chemotactic activity in vitro.

Peroxynitrite, an oxidant generated by the interaction between superoxide and nitric oxide (NO), can nitrate tyrosine residues, resulting in compromised protein function. Monocyte chemoattractant protein-1 (MCP-1) is a chemokine that attracts monocytes and has a tyrosine residue critical for function. We hypothesized that peroxynitrite would alter MCP-1 activity. Peroxynitrite attenuated MCP-1-induced monocyte chemotactic activity (MCA) in a dose-dependent manner (P < 0.05) but did not attenuate leukotriene B4 or complement-activated serum MCA. The reducing agents dithionite, deferoxamine, and dithiothreitol reversed the MCA inhibition by peroxynitrite, and exogenous L-tyrosine abrogated the inhibition by peroxynitrite. PAPA-NONOate, an NO donor, or superoxide generated by xanthine and xanthine oxidase did not show an inhibitory effect on MCA induced by MCP-1. The peroxynitrite generator 3-morpholinosydnonimine caused a concentration-dependent inhibition of MCA by MCP-1. Peroxynitrite reduced MCP-1 binding to monocytes and resulted in nitrotyrosine formation. These findings are consistent with nitration of tyrosine by peroxynitrite, with subsequent inhibition of MCP-1 binding to monocytes, and suggest that peroxynitrite may play a role in regulation of MCP-1-induced monocyte chemotaxis.  (+info)