The human asparaginase-like protein 1 hASRGL1 is an Ntn hydrolase with beta-aspartyl peptidase activity.
ABSTRACT: Herein we report the bacterial expression, purification, and enzymatic characterization of the human asparaginase-like protein 1 (hASRGL1). We present evidence that hASRGL1 exhibits beta-aspartyl peptidase activity consistent with enzymes designated as plant-type asparaginases, which had thus far been found in only plants and bacteria. Similar to nonmammalian plant-type asparaginases, hASRGL1 is shown to be an Ntn hydrolase for which Thr168 serves as the essential N-terminal nucleophile for intramolecular processing and catalysis, corroborated in part by abolishment of both activities through the Thr168Ala point mutation. In light of the activity profile reported here, ASRGL1s may act synergistically with protein l-isoaspartyl methyl transferase to relieve accumulation of potentially toxic isoaspartyl peptides in mammalian brain and other tissues.
Project description:Asparaginases catalyze the hydrolysis of the amino acid asparagine to aspartate and ammonia. Bacterial asparaginases are used in cancer chemotherapy to deplete asparagine from the blood, because several hematological malignancies depend on extracellular asparagine for growth. To avoid the immune response against the bacterial enzymes, it would be beneficial to replace them with human asparaginases. However, unlike the bacterial asparaginases, the human enzymes have a millimolar K(m) value for asparagine, making them inefficient in depleting the amino acid from blood. To facilitate the development of human variants suitable for therapeutic use, we determined the structure of human l-asparaginase (hASNase3). This asparaginase is an N-terminal nucleophile (Ntn) family member that requires autocleavage between Gly167 and Thr168 to become catalytically competent. For most Ntn hydrolases, this autoproteolytic activation occurs efficiently. In contrast, hASNas3 is relatively stable in its uncleaved state, and this allowed us to observe the structure of the enzyme prior to cleavage. To determine the structure of the cleaved state, we exploited our discovery that the free amino acid glycine promotes complete cleavage of hASNase3. Both enzyme states were elucidated in the absence and presence of the product aspartate. Together, these structures provide insight into the conformational changes required for cleavage and the precise enzyme-substrate interactions. The new understanding of hASNase3 will serve to guide the design of variants that possess a decreased K(m) value for asparagine, making the human enzyme a suitable replacement for the bacterial asparaginases in cancer therapy.
Project description:The human asparaginase-like protein 1 (hASRGL1) catalyzes the hydrolysis of l-asparagine and isoaspartyl-dipeptides. As an N-terminal nucleophile (Ntn) hydrolase superfamily member, the active form of hASRGL1 is generated by an intramolecular cleavage step with Thr168 as the catalytic residue. However, in vitro, autoprocessing is incomplete (~50%), fettering the biophysical characterization of hASRGL1. We circumvented this obstacle by constructing a circularly permuted hASRGL1 that uncoupled the autoprocessing reaction, allowing us to kinetically and structurally characterize this enzyme and the precursor-like hASRGL1-Thr168Ala variant. Crystallographic and biochemical evidence suggest an activation mechanism where a torsional restraint on the Thr168 side chain helps drive the intramolecular processing reaction. Cleavage and formation of the active site releases the torsional restriction on Thr168, which is facilitated by a small conserved Gly-rich loop near the active site that allows the conformational changes necessary for activation.
Project description:Our long-term goal is the design of a human l-asparaginase (hASNase3) variant, suitable for use in cancer therapy without the immunogenicity problems associated with the currently used bacterial enzymes. Asparaginases catalyze the hydrolysis of the amino acid asparagine to aspartate and ammonia. The key property allowing for the depletion of blood asparagine by bacterial asparaginases is their low micromolar KM value. In contrast, human enzymes have a millimolar KM for asparagine. Toward the goal of engineering an hASNase3 variant with micromolar KM, we conducted a structure/function analysis of the conserved catalytic threonine triad of this human enzyme. As a member of the N-terminal nucleophile family, to become enzymatically active, hASNase3 must undergo autocleavage between residues Gly167 and Thr168. To determine the individual contribution of each of the three conserved active-site threonines (threonine triad Thr168, Thr186, Thr219) for the enzyme-activating autocleavage and asparaginase reactions, we prepared the T168S, T186V and T219A/V mutants. These mutants were tested for their ability to cleave and to catalyze asparagine hydrolysis, in addition to being examined structurally. We also elucidated the first N-terminal nucleophile plant-type asparaginase structure in the covalent intermediate state. Our studies indicate that, while not all triad threonines are required for the cleavage reaction, all are essential for the asparaginase activity. The increased understanding of hASNase3 function resulting from these studies reveals the key regions that govern cleavage and the asparaginase reaction, which may inform the design of variants that attain a low KM for asparagine.
Project description:This study describes the production of native l-asparaginases by submerged fermentation from Aspergillus strains and provides the biochemical characterization, kinetic and thermodynamic parameters of the three ones that stood out for high l-asparaginase production. For comparison, the commercial fungal l-asparaginase was also studied. Both commercial and l-asparaginase from Aspergillus oryzae CCT 3940 showed optimum activity and stability in the pH range from 5 to 8 and the asparaginase from Aspergillus niger LBA 02 was stable in a more alkaline pH range. About the kinetic parameters, the denaturation constant increased with the heating temperature for all l-asparaginases, indicating that the l-asparaginase activity decreased at higher temperatures, especially above 60 °C. Moreover, l-asparaginase from A. oryzae CCT 3940 remained stable after 60 min at 50 °C. None of the l-asparaginases were inhibited by high NaCl concentrations, which are highly desirable for food industry application. The catalytic activities of all the l-asparaginases were enhanced by the presence of Mn2+ and inhibited by p-chloromercuribenzoate and iodoacetamide. The l-asparaginase from the Aspergillus strains and the commercial enzyme had similar K m when l-asparagine was used as substrate. None of the l-asparaginases, except the l-asparaginase from A. niger LBA 02, could hydrolyze the substrate l-glutamine, which is of interest for medical proposes, since the glutaminase activity is usually related to adverse reaction during the leukemia treatment. This study showed that these new three non-recombinant l-asparaginases studied have potential application in the food and pharmaceutical industries, especially due to their good thermostability.
Project description:l-Asparaginases of bacterial origin are a mainstay of acute lymphoblastic leukemia treatment. The mechanism of action of these enzyme drugs is associated with their capacity to deplete the amino acid l-asparagine from the blood. However, clinical use of bacterial l-asparaginases is complicated by their dual l-asparaginase and l-glutaminase activities. The latter, even though representing only ?10% of the overall activity, is partially responsible for the observed toxic side effects. Hence, l-asparaginases devoid of l-glutaminase activity hold potential as safer drugs. Understanding the key determinants of l-asparaginase substrate specificity is a prerequisite step toward the development of enzyme variants with reduced toxicity. Here we present crystal structures of the Erwinia chrysanthemi l-asparaginase in complex with l-aspartic acid and with l-glutamic acid. These structures reveal two enzyme conformations-open and closed-corresponding to the inactive and active states, respectively. The binding of ligands induces the positioning of the catalytic Thr15 into its active conformation, which in turn allows for the ordering and closure of the flexible N-terminal loop. Notably, l-aspartic acid is more efficient than l-glutamic acid in inducing the active positioning of Thr15. Structural elements explaining the preference of the enzyme for l-asparagine over l-glutamine are discussed with guidance to the future development of more specific l-asparaginases.
Project description:An exhaustive screening program was applied for scoring a promising L-asparaginase producing-isolate. The recovered isolate was identified biochemically and molecularly and its L-asparaginase productivity was optimized experimentally and by Response Surface Methodology. The produced enzyme was characterized experimentally for its catalytic properties and by bioinformatics analysis for its immunogenicity. The promising L-asparaginase producing-isolate was selected from 722 recovered isolates and identified as Stenotrophomonas maltophilia and deposited at Microbiological Resources Centre (Cairo Mircen) under the code EMCC2297. This isolate produces both intracellular (type I) and extracellular (type II) L-asparaginases with about 4.7 fold higher extracellular L-asparaginase productivity. Bioinformatics analysis revealed clustering of Stenotrophomonas maltophiliaL-asparaginase with those of Pseudomonas species and considerable closeness to the two commercially available L-asparaginases of E. coli and Erwinia chrysanthemi. Fourteen antigenic regions are predicted for Stenotrophomonas maltophiliaL-asparaginase versus 16 and 18 antigenic regions for the Erwinia chrysanthemi and E. coliL-asparaginases. Type II L-asparaginase productivity of the test isolate reached 4.7 IU/ml/h and exhibited maximum activity with no metal ion requirement at 37 °C, pH 8.6, 40 mM asparagine concentration and could tolerate NaCl concentration up to 500 mM and retain residual activity of 55% at 70 °C after half an hour treatment period. Application both of random mutation by gamma irradiation and Response Surface Methodology that determined 38.11 °C, 6.89 pH, 19.85 h and 179.15 rpm as optimum process parameters could improve the isolate L-asparaginase productivity. Maximum production of about 8 IU/ml/h was obtained with 0.4% dextrose, 0.1% yeast extract and 10 mM magnesium sulphate. In conclusion L-asparaginase of the recovered Stenotrophomonas maltophilia EMCC2297 isolate has characters enabling it to be used for medical therapeutic application.
Project description:The L-asparaginases from Escherichia coli and Erwinia chrysanthemi are effective drugs that have been used in the treatment of acute childhood lymphoblastic leukaemia for over 30 years. However, despite their therapeutic potential, they can cause serious side effects as a consequence of their intrinsic glutaminase activity, which leads to L-glutamine depletion in the blood. Consequently, new asparaginases with low glutaminase activity, fewer side effects and high activity towards L-asparagine are highly desirable as better alternatives in cancer therapy. L-Asparaginase from Helicobacter pylori was overexpressed in E. coli and purified for structural studies. The enzyme was crystallized at pH 7.0 in the presence of 16-19%(w/v) PEG 4000 and 0.1 M magnesium formate. Data were collected to 1.6 A resolution at 100 K from a single crystal at a synchrotron-radiation source. The crystals belong to space group I222, with unit-cell parameters a = 63.6, b = 94.9, c = 100.2 A and one molecule of L-asparaginase in the asymmetric unit. Elucidation of the crystal structure will provide insight into the active site of the enzyme and a better understanding of the structure-activity relationship in L-asparaginases.
Project description:A Bacillus licheniformis isolate with high L-asparaginase productivity was recovered upon screening two hundred soil samples. This isolate produces the two types of bacterial L-asparaginases, the intracellular type I and the extracellular type II. The catalytic activity of type II enzyme was much higher than that of type I and reached about 5.5 IU/ml/h. Bioinformatics analysis revealed that L-asparaginases of Bacillus licheniformis is clustered with those of Bacillus subtilis, Bacillus haloterans, Bacillus mojavensis and Bacillus tequilensis while it exhibits distant relatedness to L-asparaginases of other Bacillus subtilis species as well as to those of Bacillus amyloliquefaciens and Bacillus velezensis species. Upon comparison of Bacillus licheniformis L-asparaginase to those of the two FDA approved L-asparaginases of E. coli (marketed as Elspar) and Erwinia chrysanthemi (marketed as Erwinaze), it observed in a cluster distinct from- and with validly predicted antigenic regions number comparable to those of the two mentioned reference strains. It exhibited maximum activity at 40 °C, pH 8.6, 40 mM asparagine, 10 mM zinc sulphate and could withstand 500 mM NaCl and retain 70% of its activity at 70 °C for 30 min exposure time. Isolate enzyme productivity was improved by gamma irradiation and optimized by RSM experimental design (Box-Behnken central composite design). The optimum conditions for maximum L-asparaginase production by the improved mutant were 39.57 °C, 7.39 pH, 20.74 h, 196.40 rpm, 0.5% glucose, 0.1% ammonium chloride, and 10 mM magnesium sulphate. Taken together, Bacillus licheniformis L-asparaginase can be considered as a promising candidate for clinical application as antileukemic agent.
Project description:Human asparaginase 3 (hASNase3), which belongs to the N-terminal nucleophile hydrolase superfamily, is synthesized as a single polypeptide that is devoid of asparaginase activity. Intramolecular autoproteolytic processing releases the amino group of Thr168, a moiety required for catalyzing asparagine hydrolysis. Recombinant hASNase3 purifies as the uncleaved, asparaginase-inactive form and undergoes self-cleavage to the active form at a very slow rate. Here, we show that the free amino acid glycine selectively acts to accelerate hASNase3 cleavage both in vitro and in human cells. Other small amino acids such as alanine, serine, or the substrate asparagine are not capable of promoting autoproteolysis. Crystal structures of hASNase3 in complex with glycine in the uncleaved and cleaved enzyme states reveal the mechanism of glycine-accelerated posttranslational processing and explain why no other amino acid can substitute for glycine.
Project description:Asparaginase is widely used in chemotherapeutic regimens for the treatment of acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) and has led to a substantial improvement in cure rates, especially in children. Optimal therapeutic effects depend on a complete and sustained depletion of serum asparagine. However, pronounced interpatient variability, differences in pharmacokinetic properties between asparaginases and the formation of asparaginase antibodies make it difficult to predict the degree of asparagine depletion that will result from a given dose of asparaginase. The pharmacological principles underlying asparaginase therapy in the treatment of ALL are summarized in this article. A better understanding of the many factors that influence asparaginase activity and subsequent asparagine depletion may allow physicians to tailor treatment to the individual, maximizing therapeutic effect and minimizing treatment-related toxicity. Therapeutic drug monitoring provides a means of assessing a patient's current depletion status and can be used to better evaluate the potential benefit of treatment adjustments.