Terminal alkene formation by the thioesterase of curacin A biosynthesis: structure of a decarboxylating thioesterase.
ABSTRACT: Curacin A is a polyketide synthase (PKS)-non-ribosomal peptide synthetase-derived natural product with potent anticancer properties generated by the marine cyanobacterium Lyngbya majuscula. Type I modular PKS assembly lines typically employ a thioesterase (TE) domain to off-load carboxylic acid or macrolactone products from an adjacent acyl carrier protein (ACP) domain. In a striking departure from this scheme the curacin A PKS employs tandem sulfotransferase and TE domains to form a terminal alkene moiety. Sulfotransferase sulfonation of β-hydroxy-acyl-ACP is followed by TE hydrolysis, decarboxylation, and sulfate elimination (Gu, L., Wang, B., Kulkarni, A., Gehret, J. J., Lloyd, K. R., Gerwick, L., Gerwick, W. H., Wipf, P., Håkansson, K., Smith, J. L., and Sherman, D. H. (2009) J. Am. Chem. Soc. 131, 16033-16035). With low sequence identity to other PKS TEs (<15%), the curacin TE represents a new thioesterase subfamily. The 1.7-Å curacin TE crystal structure reveals how the familiar α/β-hydrolase architecture is adapted to specificity for β-sulfated substrates. A Ser-His-Glu catalytic triad is centered in an open active site cleft between the core domain and a lid subdomain. Unlike TEs from other PKSs, the lid is fixed in an open conformation on one side by dimer contacts of a protruding helix and on the other side by an arginine anchor from the lid into the core. Adjacent to the catalytic triad, another arginine residue is positioned to recognize the substrate β-sulfate group. The essential features of the curacin TE are conserved in sequences of five other putative bacterial ACP-ST-TE tridomains. Formation of a sulfate leaving group as a biosynthetic strategy to facilitate acyl chain decarboxylation is of potential value as a route to hydrocarbon biofuels.
Project description:Sulfated molecules with diverse functions are common in biology, but sulfonation as a method to activate a metabolite for chemical catalysis is rare. Catalytic activity was characterized and crystal structures were determined for two such "activating" sulfotransferases (STs) that sulfonate ?-hydroxyacyl thioester substrates. The CurM polyketide synthase (PKS) ST domain from the curacin A biosynthetic pathway of Moorea producens and the olefin synthase (OLS) ST from a hydrocarbon-producing system of Synechococcus PCC 7002 both occur as a unique acyl carrier protein (ACP), ST, and thioesterase (TE) tridomain within a larger polypeptide. During pathway termination, these cyanobacterial systems introduce a terminal double bond into the ?-hydroxyacyl-ACP-linked substrate by the combined action of the ST and TE. Under in vitro conditions, CurM PKS ST and OLS ST acted on ?-hydroxy fatty acyl-ACP substrates; however, OLS ST was not reactive toward analogues of the natural PKS ST substrate bearing a C5-methoxy substituent. The crystal structures of CurM ST and OLS ST revealed that they are members of a distinct protein family relative to other prokaryotic and eukaryotic sulfotransferases. A common binding site for the sulfonate donor 3'-phosphoadenosine-5'-phosphosulfate was visualized in complexes with the product 3'-phosphoadenosine-5'-phosphate. Critical functions for several conserved amino acids in the active site were confirmed by site-directed mutagenesis, including a proposed glutamate catalytic base. A dynamic active-site flap unique to the "activating" ST family affects substrate selectivity and product formation, based on the activities of chimeras of the PKS and OLS STs with exchanged active-site flaps.
Project description:The substrate specificity of acyl-ACP thioesterase (TE) plays an essential role in controlling the fatty acid profile produced by type II fatty acid synthases. Here we identify two groups of residues that synergistically determine different substrate specificities of two acyl-ACP TEs from Cuphea viscosissima (CvFatB1 and CvFatB2). One group (V194, V217, N223, R226, R227, and I268 in CvFatB2) is critical in determining the structure and depth of a hydrophobic cavity in the N-terminal hotdog domain that binds the substrate's acyl moiety. The other group (255-RKLSKI-260 and 285-RKLPKL-289 in CvFatB2) defines positively charged surface patches that may facilitate binding of the ACP moiety. Mutagenesis of residues within these two groups results in distinct synthetic acyl-ACP TEs that efficiently hydrolyze substrates with even shorter chains (C4- to C8-ACPs). These insights into structural determinants of acyl-ACP TE substrate specificity are useful in modifying this enzyme for tailored fatty acid production in engineered organisms.
Project description:Biosynthetic innovation in natural product systems is driven by the recruitment of new genes and enzymes into these complex pathways. Here, an unprecedented decarboxylative chain termination mechanism is described for the polyketide synthase of curacin A, an anticancer lead compound isolated from the marine cyanobacterium Lyngbya majuscula. The unusual chain termination module containing adjacent sulfotransferase (ST) and thioesterase (TE) catalytic domains embedded in CurM was biochemically characterized. The TE was proved to catalyze a hydrolytic chain release of the polyketide chain elongation intermediate. Moreover, a selective ST-mediated sulfonation of the (R)-beta-hydroxyl group was found to precede TE-mediated hydrolysis, triggering a successive decarboxylative elimination and resulting in the formation of a rare terminal olefin in the final metabolite.
Project description:(1) Background: Plants possess many acyl-acyl carrier protein (acyl-ACP) thioesterases (TEs) with unique specificity. One such TE is methylketone synthase 2 (MKS2), an enzyme with a single-hotdog-fold structure found in several tomato species that hydrolyzes 3-ketoacyl-ACPs to give free 3-ketoacids. (2) Methods: In this study, we identified and characterized a tomato MKS2 homolog gene, namely, GmMKS2, in the genome of soybean (Glycine max). (3) Results: GmMKS2 underwent alternative splicing to produce three alternative transcripts, but only one encodes a protein with thioesterase activity when recombinantly expressed in Escherichia coli. Heterologous expression of the main transcript of GmMKS2, GmMKS2-X2, in E. coli generated various types of fatty acids, including 3-ketoacids-with 3-ketotetradecenoic acid (14:1) being the most abundant-cis-?5-dodecanoic acid, and 3-hydroxyacids, suggesting that GmMKS2 acts as an acyl-ACP thioesterase. In plants, the GmMKS2-X2 transcript level was found to be higher in the roots compared to other examined organs. In silico analysis revealed that there is a substantial enrichment of putative cis-regulatory elements related to disease-resistance responses and abiotic stress responses in the promoter of this gene. (4) Conclusions: GmMKS2 showed broad substrate specificities toward a wide range of acyl-ACPs that varied in terms of chain length, oxidation state, and saturation degree. Our results suggest that GmMKS2 might have a stress-related physiological function in G. max.
Project description:Prodiginines are a class of red-pigmented natural products with immunosuppressant, anticancer, and antimalarial activities. Recent studies on prodiginine biosynthesis in Streptomyces coelicolor have elucidated the function of many enzymes within the pathway. However, the function of RedJ, which was predicted to be an editing thioesterase based on sequence similarity, is unknown. We report here the genetic, biochemical, and structural characterization of the redJ gene product. Deletion of redJ in S. coelicolor leads to a 75% decrease in prodiginine production, demonstrating its importance for prodiginine biosynthesis. RedJ exhibits thioesterase activity with selectivity for substrates having long acyl chains and lacking a β-carboxyl substituent. The thioesterase has 1000-fold greater catalytic efficiency with substrates linked to an acyl carrier protein (ACP) than with the corresponding CoA thioester substrates. Also, RedJ strongly discriminates against the streptomycete ACP of fatty acid biosynthesis in preference to RedQ, an ACP of the prodiginine pathway. The 2.12 Å resolution crystal structure of RedJ provides insights into the molecular basis for the observed substrate selectivity. A hydrophobic pocket in the active site chamber is positioned to bind long acyl chains, as suggested by a long-chain ligand from the crystallization solution bound in this pocket. The accessibility of the active site is controlled by the position of a highly flexible entrance flap. These data combined with previous studies of prodiginine biosynthesis in S. coelicolor support a novel role for RedJ in facilitating transfer of a dodecanoyl chain from one acyl carrier protein to another en route to the key biosynthetic intermediate 2-undecylpyrrole.
Project description:Polyketide metabolites produced by modular type I polyketide synthases (PKS) acquire their chemical diversity through the variety of catalytic domains within modules of the pathway. Methyltransferases are among the least characterized of the catalytic domains common to PKS systems. We determined the domain boundaries and characterized the activity of a PKS C-methyltransferase (C-MT) from the curacin A biosynthetic pathway. The C-MT catalyzes S-adenosylmethionine-dependent methyl transfer to the ?-position of ?-ketoacyl substrates linked to acyl carrier protein (ACP) or a small-molecule analog but does not act on ?-hydroxyacyl substrates or malonyl-ACP. Key catalytic residues conserved in both bacterial and fungal PKS C-MTs were identified in a 2 Å crystal structure and validated biochemically. Analysis of the structure and the sequences bordering the C-MT provides insight into the positioning of this domain within complete PKS modules.
Project description:HSAF is an antifungal natural product with a new mode of action. A rare bacterial iterative PKS-NRPS assembles the HSAF skeleton. The biochemical characterization of the NRPS revealed that the thioesterase (TE) domain possesses the activities of both a protease and a peptide ligase. Active site mutagenesis, circular dichroism spectra, and homology modeling of the TE structure suggested that the TE may possess uncommon features that may lead to the unusual activities. The iterative PKS-NRPS is found in all polycyclic tetramate macrolactam gene clusters, and the unusual activities of the TE may be common to this type of hybrid PKS-NRPS.
Project description:Enediynes are potent natural product anticancer antibiotics, and are classified as 9- or 10-membered according to the size of their enediyne core carbon skeleton. Both 9- and 10-membered enediyne cores are biosynthesized by the enediyne polyketide synthase (PKSE), thioesterase (TE), and PKSE-associated enzymes. Although the divergence between 9- and 10-membered enediyne core biosynthesis remains unclear, it has been observed that nascent polyketide intermediates, tethered to the acyl carrier protein (ACP) domain of PKSE, could be released by TE in the absence of the PKSE-associated enzymes. In this study, we determined the crystal structure of SgcE10, the TE that participates in the biosynthesis of the 9-membered enediyne C-1027. Structural comparison of SgcE10 with CalE7 and DynE7, two TEs that participate in the biosynthesis of the 10-membered enediynes calicheamicin and dynemicin, respectively, revealed that they share a common ?/? hot-dog fold. The amino acids involved in both substrate binding and catalysis are conserved among SgcE10, CalE7, and DynE7. The volume and the shape of the substrate-binding channel and active site in SgcE10, CalE7, and DynE7 confirm that TEs from both 9- and 10-membered enediyne biosynthetic machineries bind the linear form of similar ACP-tethered polyene intermediates. Taken together, these findings further support the proposal that the divergence between 9- and 10-membered enediyne core biosynthesis occurs beyond PKSE and TE catalysis.
Project description:The termination step is an important source of structural diversity in polyketide biosynthesis. Most type I polyketide synthase (PKS) assembly lines are terminated by a thioesterase (TE) domain located at the C-terminus of the final module, while other PKS assembly lines lack a terminal TE domain and are instead terminated by a separate enzyme in trans. In cylindrocyclophane biosynthesis, the type I modular PKS assembly line is terminated by a freestanding type III PKS (CylI). Unexpectedly, the final module of the type I PKS (CylH) also possesses a C-terminal TE domain. Unlike typical type I PKSs, the CylH TE domain does not influence assembly line termination by CylI in vitro. Instead, this domain phylogenetically resembles a type II TE and possesses activity consistent with an editing function. This finding may shed light on the evolution of unusual PKS termination logic. In addition, the presence of related type II TE domains in many cryptic type I PKS and nonribosomal peptide synthetase (NRPS) assembly lines has implications for pathway annotation, product prediction, and engineering.
Project description:Genetic engineering of microalgae to accumulate high levels of medium-chain-length fatty acids (MCFAs) represents an attractive strategy to improve the quality of microalgae-based biodiesel, but it has thus far been least successful. We demonstrate that one limitation is the availability of fatty acyl-acyl carrier protein (ACP) substrate pool for acyl-ACP thioesterase (TE). A combinational expression platform that involved plant lauric acid-biased TE (C12TE) and MCFA-specific ketoacyl-ACP synthase (KASIV) increased lauric acid (C12:0) and myristic acid (C14:0) accumulation by almost sevenfold and fourfold, respectively, compared with native strain. These findings suggest a platform for further investigation into the enlargement of MCFA acyl-ACP substrate pool as an approach to sustainably improve quality of microalgae-based biodiesel with regard to MCFA production.