Biochemistry (Moscow) (v.77, #10)

Reflections on biocatalysis involving phosphorus by G. M. Blackburn; M. W. Bowler; Yi Jin; J. P. Waltho (1083-1096).
Early studies on chemical synthesis of biological molecules can be seen to progress to preparation and biological evaluation of phosphonates as analogues of biological phosphates, with emphasis on their isosteric and isopolar character. Work with such mimics progressed into structural studies with a range of nucleotide-utilising enzymes. The arrival of metal fluorides as analogues of the phosphoryl group, PO 3 , for transition state (TS) analysis of enzyme reactions stimulated the symbiotic deployment of 19F NMR and protein crystallography. Characteristics of enzyme transition state analogues are reviewed for a range of reactions. From the available MFx species, trifluoroberyllate gives tetrahedral mimics of ground states (GS) in which phosphate is linked to carboxylate and phosphate oxyanions. Tetrafluoroaluminate is widely employed as a TS mimic, but it necessarily imposes octahedral geometry on the assembled complexes, whereas phosphoryl transfer involves trigonal bipyramidal (tbp) geometry. Trifluoromagnesate (MgF 3 ) provides the near-ideal solution, delivering tbp geometry and correct anionic charge. Some of the forty reported tbp structures assigned as having AlF 3 0 cores have been redefined as trifluoromagnesate complexes. Transition state analogues for a range of kinases, mutases, and phosphatases provide a detailed description of mechanism for phosphoryl group transfer, supporting the concept of charge balance in their TS and of concerted-associative pathways for biocatalysis. Above all, superposition of GS and TS structures reveals that in associative phosphoryl transfer, the phosphorus atom migrates through a triangle of three, near-stationary, equatorial oxygens. The extension of these studies to near attack conformers further illuminates enzyme catalysis of phosphoryl transfer.
Keywords: phosphate esters; nucleotide analogues; α-fluorophosphonates; kinases; mutases; metal fluorides; transition state analogues; NACs

The sulfur-containing amino acid methionine (Met) in its free and amino acid residue forms can be readily oxidized to the R and S diastereomers of methionine sulfoxide (MetO). Methionine sulfoxide reductases A (MSRA) and B (MSRB) reduce MetO back to Met in a stereospecific manner, acting on the S and R forms, respectively. A third MSR type, fRMSR, reduces the R form of free MetO. MSRA and MSRB are spread across the three domains of life, whereas fRMSR is restricted to bacteria and unicellular eukaryotes. These enzymes protect against abiotic and biotic stresses and regulate lifespan. MSRs are thiol oxidoreductases containing catalytic redox-active cysteine or selenocysteine residues, which become oxidized by the substrate, requiring regeneration for the next catalytic cycle. These enzymes can be classified according to the number of redox-active cysteines (selenocysteines) and the strategies to regenerate their active forms by thioredoxin and glutaredoxin systems. For each MSR type, we review catalytic parameters for the reduction of free MetO, low molecular weight MetO-containing compounds, and oxidized proteins. Analysis of these data reinforces the concept that MSRAs reduce various types of MetO-containing substrates with similar efficiency, whereas MSRBs are specialized for the reduction of MetO in proteins.
Keywords: enzyme catalysis; methionine oxidation; methionine sulfoxide; methionine sulfoxide reductase; sulfenic acid; selenenic acid; protein oxidation; oxidative protein repair

Catalytic mechanism and substrate specificity of HIF prolyl hydroxylases by N. A. Smirnova; D. M. Hushpulian; R. E. Speer; I. N. Gaisina; R. R. Ratan; I. G. Gazaryan (1108-1119).
This review describes the catalytic mechanism, substrate specificity, and structural peculiarities of alpha-ketoglutarate dependent nonheme iron dioxygenases catalyzing prolyl hydroxylation of hypoxia-inducible factor (HIF). Distinct localization and regulation of three isoforms of HIF prolyl hydroxylases suggest their different roles in cells. The recent identification of novel substrates other than HIF, namely β2-adrenergic receptor and the large subunit of RNA polymerase II, places these enzymes in the focus of drug development efforts aimed at development of isoform-specific inhibitors. The challenges and prospects of designing isoform-specific inhibitors are discussed.
Keywords: hypoxia-inducible factor; alpha-ketoglutarate-dependent iron dioxygenase; crystal structure; computer modeling; inhibitor binding mode

Telomerase RNA biosynthesis and processing by E. M. Smekalova; O. S. Shubernetskaya; M. I. Zvereva; E. V. Gromenko; M. P. Rubtsova; O. A. Dontsova (1120-1128).
Telomerase synthesizes repetitive G-rich sequences (telomeric repeats) at the ends of eukaryotic chromosomes. This mechanism maintains the integrity of the genome, as telomere shortening leads to degradation and fusion of chromosomes. The core components of telomerase are the telomerase catalytic subunit and telomerase RNA, which possesses a small template region serving for the synthesis of a telomeric repeat. Mutations in the telomerase RNA are associated with some cases of aplastic anemia and also cause dyskeratosis congenita, myelodysplasia, and pulmonary fibrosis. Telomerase is active in 85% of cancers, and telomerase activation is one of the first steps in cell transformation. The study of telomerase and pathways where this enzyme is involved will help to understand the mechanism of the mentioned diseases and to develop new approaches for their treatment. In this review we describe the modern conception of telomerase RNA biosynthesis, processing, and functioning in the three most studied systems — yeast, vertebrates, and ciliates.
Keywords: telomerase RNA; telomerase; telomeres

Octaheme nitrite reductases: Structure and properties by T. V. Tikhonova; A. A. Trofimov; V. O. Popov (1129-1138).
Octaheme oxidoreductases are widespread among various bacterial taxa involved in the biogeochemical nitrogen cycle. The evolution of octaheme oxidoreductases of the nitrogen cycle from the evolutionarily more ancient pentaheme nitrite reductases was accompanied by changes in function from reduction of nitrogen oxides to their oxidation under changing environmental conditions. Octaheme nitrite reductases, which are the subject of the present review, are of a transitional form that combines structural and functional characteristics of pentaheme reductases and octaheme oxidases and possesses a number of unique features typical of only this family of enzymes. The review summarizes data on structure-function investigations of the family of octaheme nitrite reductases. Emphasis is given to comparison of the structures and functions of octaheme nitrite reductases and other multiheme oxidoreductases of the nitrogen cycle.
Keywords: multiheme cytochrome c ; octaheme nitrite reductase; structure; properties; evolution

Creation of catalytic antibodies metabolizing organophosphate compounds by I. N. Kurkova; I. V. Smirnov; A. A. Belogurov Jr.; N. A. Ponomarenko; A. G. Gabibov (1139-1146).
Development of new ways of creating catalytic antibodies possessing defined substrate specificity towards artificial substrates has important fundamental and practical aspects. Low immunogenicity combined with high stability of immunoglobulins in the blood stream makes abzymes potent remedies. A good example is the cocaine-hydrolyzing antibody that has successfully passed clinical trials. Creation of an effective antidote against organophosphate compounds, which are very toxic substances, is a very realistic goal. The most promising antidotes are based on cholinesterases. These antidotes are now expensive, and their production methods are inefficient. Recombinant antibodies are widely applied in clinics and have some advantage compared to enzymatic drugs. A new potential abzyme antidote will combine effective catalysis comparable to enzymes with high stability and the ability to switch on effector mechanisms specific for antibodies. Examples of abzymes metabolizing organophosphate substrates are discussed in this review.
Keywords: catalytic antibodies; abzymes; organophosphate compounds; biocatalysis

Cholinesterases (ChEs) display a hysteretic behavior with certain substrates and inhibitors. Kinetic cooperativity in hysteresis of ChE-catalyzed reactions is characterized by a lag or burst phase in the approach to steady state. With some substrates damped oscillations are shown to superimpose on hysteretic lags. These time dependent peculiarities are observed for both butyrylcholinesterase and acetylcholinesterase from different sources. Hysteresis in ChE-catalyzed reactions can be interpreted in terms of slow transitions between two enzyme conformers E and E′. Substrate can bind to E and/or E′, both Michaelian complexes ES and E’s can be catalytically competent, or only one of them can make products. The formal reaction pathway depends on both the chemical structure of the substrate and the type of enzyme. In particular, damped oscillations develop when substrate exists in different, slowly interconvertible, conformational, and/or micellar forms, of which only the minor form is capable of binding and reacting with the enzyme. Biphasic pseudo-first-order progressive inhibition of ChEs by certain carbamates and organophosphates also fits with a slow equilibrium between two reactive enzyme forms. Hysteresis can be modulated by medium parameters (pH, chaotropic and kosmotropic salts, organic solvents, temperature, osmotic pressure, and hydrostatic pressure). These studies showed that water structure plays a role in hysteretic behavior of ChEs. Attempts to provide a molecular mechanism for ChE hysteresis from mutagenesis studies or crystallographic studies failed so far. In fact, several lines of evidence suggest that hysteresis is controlled by the conformation of His438, a key residue in the catalytic triad of cholinesterases. Induction time may depend on the probability of His438 to adopt the operative conformation in the catalytic triad. The functional significance of ChE hysteresis is puzzling. However, the accepted view that proteins are in equilibrium between preexisting functional and non-functional conformers, and that binding of a ligand to the functional form shifts equilibrium towards the functional conformation, suggests that slow equilibrium between two conformational states of these enzymes may have a regulatory function in damping out the response to certain ligands and irreversible inhibitors. This is particularly true for immobilized (membrane bound) enzymes where the local substrate and/or inhibitor concentrations depend on influx in crowded organellar systems, e.g. cholinergic synaptic clefts. Therefore, physiological or toxicological relevance of the hysteretic behavior and damped oscillations in ChE-catalyzed reactions and inhibition cannot be ruled out.
Keywords: cholinesterase; pre-steady state; hysteresis; time-dependent; preexisting slow equilibrium; enzyme conformer; damped oscillations; inhibition

Kinetic mechanism of the interaction of Saccharomyces cerevisiae AP-endonuclease 1 with DNA substrates by E. S. Dyakonova; V. V. Koval; A. A. Ishchenko; M. K. Saparbaev; R. Kaptein; O. S. Fedorova (1162-1171).
The apurinic/apyrimidinic endonuclease from Saccharomyces cerevisiae Apn1 is one of the key enzymes involved in base excision repair of DNA lesions. A major function of the enzyme is to cleave the upstream phosphodiester bond of an apurinic/apyrimidinic site (AP-site), leading to the formation of a single-strand break with 3′-hydroxyl (OH) and 5′-deoxyribose phosphate (dRP) termini. In this study, the pre-steady-state kinetics and conformational dynamics of DNA substrates during their interaction with Apn1 were investigated. A stopped-flow method with detection of the fluorescence intensity of 2-aminopurine and pyrrolocytosine located adjacent or opposite to the damage was used. It was found that upon interaction with Apn1, both DNA strands undergo a number of rapid changes. The location of fluorescent analogs of heterocyclic bases in DNA does not influence the catalytic step of the reaction. Comparison of data obtained for yeast Apn1 and reported data (Kanazhevskaya, L. Yu., Koval, V. V., Vorobjev, Yu. N., and Fedorova, O. S. (2012) Biochemistry, 51, 1306–1321) for human Ape1 revealed some differences in their interaction with DNA substrates.
Keywords: Apn1; base excision repair (BER); stopped-flow method; 2-aminopurine; pyrrolocytosine

Biogenic polyamines spermine and spermidine activate RNA polymerase and inhibit RNA helicase of hepatitis C virus by A. N. Korovina; V. L. Tunitskaya; M. A. Khomutov; A. R. Simonian; A. R. Khomutov; A. V. Ivanov; S. N. Kochetkov (1172-1180).
Influence of the biogenic polyamines spermine, spermidine, and putrescine as well as their derivatives on the replication enzymes of hepatitis C virus (HCV) was investigated. It was found that spermine and spermidine activate HCV RNA-dependent RNA polymerase (NS5B protein). This effect was not caused by the stabilization of the enzyme or by competition with template-primer complex, but rather it was due to achievement of true maximum velocity V max. Natural polyamines and their derivatives effectively inhibited the helicase reaction catalyzed by another enzyme of HCV replication — helicase/NTPase (NS3 protein). However, these compounds affected neither the NTPase reaction nor its activation by polynucleotides. Activation of the HCV RNA polymerase and inhibition of the viral helicase were shown at physiological concentrations of the polyamines. These data suggest that biogenic polyamines may cause differently directed effects on the replication of the HCV genome in an infected cell.
Keywords: polyamines; spermine; spermidine; analogs; hepatitis C virus; RNA polymerase; helicase

Engineering of substrate specificity of D-amino acid oxidase from the yeast Trigonopsis variabilis: Directed mutagenesis of Phe258 residue by N. V. Komarova; I. V. Golubev; S. V. Khoronenkova; T. A. Chubar’; V. I. Tishkov (1181-1189).
Natural D-amino acid oxidases (DAAO) are not suitable for selective determination of D-amino acids due to their broad substrate specificity profiles. Analysis of the 3D-structure of the DAAO enzyme from the yeast Trigonopsis variabilis (TvDAAO) revealed the Phe258 residue located at the surface of the protein globule to be in the entrance to the active site. The Phe258 residue was mutated to Ala, Ser, and Tyr residues. The mutant TvDAAOs with amino acid substitutions Phe258Ala, Phe258Ser, and Phe258Tyr were purified to homogeneity and their thermal stability and substrate specificity were studied. These substitutions resulted in either slight stabilization (Phe258Tyr) or destabilization (Phe258Ser) of the enzyme. The change in half-inactivation periods was less than twofold. However, these substitutions caused dramatic changes in substrate specificity. Increasing the side chain size with the Phe258Tyr substitution decreased the kinetic parameters with all the D-amino acids studied. For the two other substitutions, the substrate specificity profiles narrowed. The catalytic efficiency increased only for D-Tyr, D-Phe, and D-Leu, and for all other D-amino acids this parameter dramatically decreased. The improvement of catalytic efficiency with D-Tyr, D-Phe, and D-Leu for TvDAAO Phe258Ala was 3.66-, 11.7-, and 1.5-fold, and for TvDAAO Phe258Ser it was 1.7-, 4.75-, and 6.61-fold, respectively.
Keywords: D-amino acid oxidase; site-directed mutagenesis; substrate specificity; thermal stability

Purification, biochemical characterization, and structure of recombinant endo-1,4-β-xylanase XylE by T. V. Fedorova; A. M. Chulkin; E. A. Vavilova; I. G. Maisuradze; A. A. Trofimov; I. N. Zorov; V. P. Khotchenkov; K. M. Polyakov; S. V. Benevolensky; O. V. Koroleva; V. S. Lamzin (1190-1198).
The gene xylE encoding endo-1,4-β-xylanase from the 10th family of glycosyl hydrolases produced by the mycelial fungus Penicillium canescens has been expressed under the control of the strong promoter of the bgaS gene encoding β-galactosidase from P. canescens. As a result, a strain-producer of endoxylanase XylE was developed. The recombinant enzyme was isolated and purified to homogeneity with specific activity of 50 U/mg. The physicochemical and biochemical properties of the endoxylanase were studied. The maximal enzymatic activity was observed at pH 6.0 and 70°C. Endoxylanase XylE was shown to be a highly thermostable enzyme with half-inactivation period τ1/2 of 7 h at 60°C. The kinetic parameters were 0.52 mg/ml (K m) and 75 μmol/min per mg (V max) using birch xylan as the substrate. Crystals of endoxylonase XylE were obtained, and the 3D structure was solved at 1.47 Å resolution. The 3D structure of an endo-1,4-β-xylanase from the 10th family containing carbohydrate and unique cyclic structure located at the C-terminus of the polypeptide chain was obtained for the first time.
Keywords: Penicillium canescens ; xylanase; homologous expression; XylE; 3D structure; biochemical and physicochemical properties; substrate specificity

Stabilization of plant formate dehydrogenase by rational design by A. A. Alekseeva; S. S. Savin; S. Yu. Kleimenov; I. V. Uporov; E. V. Pometun; V. I. Tishkov (1199-1209).
Recombinant formate dehydrogenase (FDH, EC 1.2.1.2) from soy Glycine max (SoyFDH) has the lowest values of Michaelis constants for formate and NAD+ among all studied formate dehydrogenases from different sources. Nevertheless, it also has the lower thermal stability compared to enzymes from bacteria and yeasts. The alignment of full sequences of FDHs from different sources as well as structure of apo- and holo-forms of SoyFDH has been analyzed. Ten mutant forms of SoyFDH were obtained by site-directed mutagenesis. All of them were purified to homogeneity and their thermal stability and substrate specificity were studied. Thermal stability was investigated by studying the inactivation kinetics at different temperatures and by differential scanning calorimetry (DSC). As a result, single-point (Ala267Met) and double mutants (Ala267Met/Ile272Val) were found to be more stable than the wild-type enzyme at high temperatures. The stabilization effect depends on temperature, and at 52°C it was 3.6- and 11-fold, respectively. These mutants also showed higher melting temperatures in DSC experiments — the differences in maxima of the melting curves (T m) for the single and double mutants were 2.7 and 4.6°C, respectively. For mutations Leu24Asp and Val127Arg, the thermal stability at 52°C decreased 5- and 2.5-fold, respectively, and the T m decreased by 3.5 and 1.7°C, respectively. There were no differences in thermal stability of six mutant forms of SoyFDH — Gly18Ala, Lys23Thr, Lys109Pro, Asn247Glu, Val281Ile, and Ser354Pro. Analysis of kinetic data showed that for the enzymes with mutations Val127Arg and Ala267Met the catalytic efficiency increased 1.7- and 2.3-fold, respectively.
Keywords: formate dehydrogenase; thermal stability; rational design; catalytic efficiency

Expression of human interferon-α8 synthetic gene under PBAD promoter by Y. Mohammed; N. A. El-Baky; N. A. Redwan; E. M. Redwan (1210-1219).
Recombinant human interferon-α8 (rhIFN-α8) was obtained by synthesizing a codon-optimized gene in a two-step polymerase chain reaction (PCR) and expressing it in Escherichia coli. The gene encoding human IFN-α8 shows a high content of rare codons. These were replaced based on E. coli codon usage and balancing TA-GC ratio contents of the entire gene. The two-step PCR was performed using long (45–60 nucleotides) overlapped primers and two Taq polymerases (pfu clone and GC-rich system) and resulted in a DNA band of 504 base pairs (bp) corresponding to the calculated size of the IFN-α8 coding sequence; the pfu clone failed to amplify the gene in the correct size without unspecific bands. The full gene was cloned into the pBAD-TOPO expression vector. After cloning, the gene was reoriented by NcoI restriction digestion and religation. The ligated pBAD-TOPO-IFN-α8 (pBAD-IFNα8) plasmid carried the IFN-α8 gene under transcriptional control of the L-arabinose-inducible PBAD promoter. IFN-α8 expression was optimized with respect to L-arabinose concentration, temperature, and time of induction in shake flask cultures to maximize the yield of soluble IFN-α8. The produced IFN-α8 was characterized by polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis and immunoassays. After purification on DEAE-Sepharose, the yield was 100 mg/liter. The antiviral and anticancer activities of the IFN-α8 were evaluated in comparison with IFN-α2a, and the results are discussed.
Keywords: codon optimization; Escherichia coli ; human interferon-alpha eight; synthetic gene