Quantitative Persulfide Site Identification (qPerS-SID) Reveals Protein Targets of H2S Releasing Donors in Mammalian Cells.
ABSTRACT: H2S is an important signalling molecule involved in diverse biological processes. It mediates the formation of cysteine persulfides (R-S-SH), which affect the activity of target proteins. Like thiols, persulfides show reactivity towards electrophiles and behave similarly to other cysteine modifications in a biotin switch assay. In this manuscript, we report on qPerS-SID a mass spectrometry-based method allowing the isolation of persulfide containing peptides in the mammalian proteome. With this method, we demonstrated that H2S donors differ in their efficacy to induce persulfides in HEK293 cells. Furthermore, data analysis revealed that persulfide formation affects all subcellular compartments and various cellular processes. Negatively charged amino acids appeared more frequently adjacent to cysteines forming persulfides. We confirmed our proteomic data using pyruvate kinase M2 as a model protein and showed that several cysteine residues are prone to persulfide formation finally leading to its inactivation. Taken together, the site-specific identification of persulfides on a proteome scale can help to identify target proteins involved in H2S signalling and enlightens the biology of H2S and its releasing agents.
Project description:Hydrogen sulfide (H2S) has emerged as a signalling molecule capable of regulating several important physiological functions such as blood pressure, neurotransmission and inflammation. The mechanisms behind these effects are still largely elusive and oxidative posttranslational modification of cysteine residues (protein persulfidation or S-sulfhydration) has been proposed as the main pathway for H2S-induced biological and pharmacological effects. As a signalling mechanism, persulfidation has to be controlled. Using an improved tag-switch assay for persulfide detection we show here that protein persulfide levels are controlled by the thioredoxin system. Recombinant thioredoxin showed an almost 10-fold higher reactivity towards cysteine persulfide than towards cystine and readily cleaved protein persulfides as well. This reaction resulted in H2S release suggesting that thioredoxin could be an important regulator of H2S levels from persulfide pools. Inhibition of the thioredoxin system caused an increase in intracellular persulfides, highlighting thioredoxin as a major protein depersulfidase that controls H2S signalling. Finally, using plasma from HIV-1 patients that have higher circulatory levels of thioredoxin, we could prove depersulfidase role in vivo.
Project description:Hydrogen sulfide (H2S) has emerged as a new member of the gaseous transmitter family of signaling molecules and appears to play a regulatory role in the cardiovascular and nervous systems. Recent studies suggest that protein cysteine S-sulfhydration may function as a mechanism for transforming the H2S signal into a biological response. However, selective detection of S-sulfhydryl modifications is challenging since the persulfide group (RSSH) exhibits reactivity akin to other sulfur species, especially thiols. A modification of the biotin switch technique, using S-methyl methanethiosulfonate (MMTS) as an alkylating reagent, was recently used to identify a large number of proteins that may undergo S-sulfhydration, but the underlying mechanism of chemical detection was not fully explored. To address this key issue, we have developed a protein persulfide model and analogue of MMTS, S-4-bromobenzyl methanethiosulfonate (BBMTS). Using these new reagents, we investigated the chemistry in the modified biotin switch method and examined the reactivity of protein persulfides toward different electrophile/nucleophile species. Together, our data affirm the nucleophilic properties of the persulfide sulfane sulfur and afford new insights into protein S-sulfhydryl chemistry, which may be exploited in future detection strategies.
Project description:Hydrogen sulfide (H2S) is both a lethal gas and an emerging gasotransmitter in humans, suggesting that the cellular H2S level must be tightly regulated. CstB is encoded by the cst operon of the major human pathogen Staphylococcus aureus and is under the transcriptional control of the persulfide sensor CstR and H2S. Here, we show that CstB is a multifunctional Fe(II)-containing persulfide dioxygenase (PDO), analogous to the vertebrate protein ETHE1 (ethylmalonic encephalopathy protein 1). Chromosomal deletion of ethe1 is fatal in vertebrates. In the presence of molecular oxygen (O2), hETHE1 oxidizes glutathione persulfide (GSSH) to generate sulfite and reduced glutathione. In contrast, CstB oxidizes major cellular low molecular weight (LMW) persulfide substrates from S. aureus, coenzyme A persulfide (CoASSH) and bacillithiol persulfide (BSSH), directly to generate thiosulfate (TS) and reduced thiols, thereby avoiding the cellular toxicity of sulfite. Both Cys201 in the N-terminal PDO domain (CstB(PDO)) and Cys408 in the C-terminal rhodanese domain (CstB(Rhod)) strongly enhance the TS generating activity of CstB. CstB also possesses persulfide transferase (PT; reverse rhodanese) activity, which generates TS when provided with LMW persulfides and sulfite, as well as conventional thiosulfate transferase (TST; rhodanese) activity; both of these activities require Cys408. CstB protects S. aureus against H2S toxicity, with the C201S and C408S cstB genes being unable to rescue a NaHS-induced ?cstB growth phenotype. Induction of the cst operon by NaHS reveals that functional CstB impacts cellular TS concentrations. These data collectively suggest that CstB may have evolved to facilitate the clearance of LMW persulfides that occur upon elevation of the level of cellular H2S and hence may have an impact on bacterial viability under H2S misregulation, in concert with the other enzymes encoded by the cst operon.
Project description:Hydrogen sulfide (H2S) participates in prokaryotic metabolism and is associated with several physiological functions in mammals. H2S reacts with oxidized thiol derivatives (i.e. disulfides and sulfenic acids) and thereby forms persulfides, which are plausible transducers of the H2S-mediated signaling effects. The one-cysteine peroxiredoxin alkyl hydroperoxide reductase E from Mycobacterium tuberculosis (MtAhpE-SH) reacts fast with hydroperoxides, forming a stable sulfenic acid (MtAhpE-SOH), which we chose here as a model to study the interactions between H2S and peroxiredoxins (Prx). MtAhpE-SOH reacted with H2S, forming a persulfide (MtAhpE-SSH) detectable by mass spectrometry. The rate constant for this reaction was (1.4 ± 0.2) × 103 m-1 s-1 (pH 7.4, 25 °C), six times higher than that reported for the reaction with the main low-molecular-weight thiol in M. tuberculosis, mycothiol. H2S was able to complete the catalytic cycle of MtAhpE and, according to kinetic considerations, it could represent an alternative substrate in M. tuberculosis. MtAhpE-SSH reacted 43 times faster than did MtAhpE-SH with the unspecific electrophile 4,4'-dithiodipyridine, a disulfide that exhibits no preferential reactivity with peroxidatic cysteines, but MtAhpE-SSH was less reactive toward specific Prx substrates such as hydrogen peroxide and peroxynitrite. According to molecular dynamics simulations, this loss of specific reactivity could be explained by alterations in the MtAhpE active site. MtAhpE-SSH could transfer its sulfane sulfur to a low-molecular-weight thiol, a process likely facilitated by the low pKa of the leaving thiol MtAhpE-SH, highlighting the possibility that Prx participates in transpersulfidation. The findings of our study contribute to the understanding of persulfide formation and reactivity.
Project description:Using methodology developed herein, it is found that reactive persulfides and polysulfides are formed endogenously from both small molecule species and proteins in high amounts in mammalian cells and tissues. These reactive sulfur species were biosynthesized by two major sulfurtransferases: cystathionine ?-synthase and cystathionine ?-lyase. Quantitation of these species indicates that high concentrations of glutathione persulfide (perhydropersulfide >100 ?M) and other cysteine persulfide and polysulfide derivatives in peptides/proteins were endogenously produced and maintained in the plasma, cells, and tissues of mammals (rodent and human). It is expected that persulfides are especially nucleophilic and reducing. This view was found to be the case, because they quickly react with H2O2 and a recently described biologically generated electrophile 8-nitroguanosine 3',5'-cyclic monophosphate. These results indicate that persulfides are potentially important signaling/effector species, and because H2S can be generated from persulfide degradation, much of the reported biological activity associated with H2S may actually be that of persulfides. That is, H2S may act primarily as a marker for the biologically active of persulfide species.
Project description:Hydrogen sulfide signaling involves persulfide formation at specific protein Cys residues. However, overcoming current methodological challenges in persulfide detection and elucidation of Cys regeneration mechanisms from persulfides are prerequisites for constructing a bona fide signaling model. We here establish a novel, highly specific protein persulfide detection protocol, ProPerDP, with which we quantify 1.52 ± 0.6 and 11.6 ± 6.9 ?g/mg protein steady-state protein persulfide concentrations in human embryonic kidney 293 (HEK293) cells and mouse liver, respectively. Upon treatment with polysulfides, HEK293 and A549 cells exhibited increased protein persulfidation. Deletion of the sulfide-producing cystathionine-?-lyase or cystathionine-?-synthase enzymes in yeast diminished protein persulfide levels, thereby corroborating their involvement in protein persulfidation processes. We here establish that thioredoxin (Trx) and glutathione (GSH) systems can independently catalyze reductions of inorganic polysulfides and protein persulfides. Increased endogenous persulfide levels and protein persulfidation following polysulfide treatment in thioredoxin reductase-1 (TrxR1) or thioredoxin-related protein of 14 kDa (TRP14) knockdown HEK293 cells indicated that these enzymes constitute a potent regeneration system of Cys residues from persulfides in a cellular context. Furthermore, TrxR1-deficient cells were less viable upon treatment with toxic amounts of polysulfides compared to control cells. Emphasizing the dominant role of cytosolic disulfide reduction systems in maintaining sulfane sulfur homeostasis in vivo, protein persulfide levels were markedly elevated in mouse livers where hepatocytes lack both TrxR1 and glutathione reductase (TR/GR-null). The different persulfide patterns observed in wild-type, GR-null, and TR/GR-null livers suggest distinct roles for the Trx and GSH systems in regulating subsets of protein persulfides and thereby fine-tuning sulfide signaling pathways.
Project description:Hydrogen sulfide (H2S) elicits pleiotropic physiological effects ranging from modulation of cardiovascular to CNS functions. A dominant method for transmission of sulfide-based signals is via posttranslational modification of reactive cysteine thiols to persulfides. However, the source of the persulfide donor and whether its relationship to H2S is as a product or precursor is controversial. The transsulfuration pathway enzymes can synthesize cysteine persulfide (Cys-SSH) from cystine and H2S from cysteine and/or homocysteine. Recently, Cys-SSH was proposed as the primary product of the transsulfuration pathway with H2S representing a decomposition product of Cys-SSH. Our detailed kinetic analyses demonstrate a robust capacity for Cys-SSH production by the human transsulfuration pathway enzymes, cystathionine beta-synthase and ?-cystathionase (CSE) and for homocysteine persulfide synthesis from homocystine by CSE only. However, in the reducing cytoplasmic milieu where the concentration of reduced thiols is significantly higher than of disulfides, substrate level regulation favors the synthesis of H2S over persulfides. Mathematical modeling at physiologically relevant hepatic substrate concentrations predicts that H2S rather than Cys-SSH is the primary product of the transsulfuration enzymes with CSE being the dominant producer. The half-life of the metastable Cys-SSH product is short and decomposition leads to a mixture of polysulfides (Cys-S-(S)n-S-Cys). These in vitro data, together with the intrinsic reactivity of Cys-SSH for cysteinyl versus sulfur transfer, are consistent with the absence of an observable increase in protein persulfidation in cells in response to exogenous cystine and evidence for the formation of polysulfides under these conditions.
Project description:Persulfides (RSSH) have been hypothesized as critical components in sulfur-mediated redox cycles and as potential signaling compounds, similar to hydrogen sulfide (H2 S). Hindering the study of persulfides is a lack of persulfide-donor compounds with selective triggers that release discrete persulfide species. Reported here is the synthesis and characterization of a ROS-responsive (ROS=reactive oxygen species), self-immolative persulfide donor. The donor, termed BDP-NAC, showed selectivity towards H2 O2 over other potential oxidative or nucleophilic triggers, resulting in the sustained release of the persulfide of N-acetyl cysteine (NAC) over the course of 2?h, as measured by LCMS. Exposure of H9C2 cardiomyocytes to H2 O2 revealed that BDP-NAC mitigated the effects of a highly oxidative environment in a dose-dependent manner over relevant controls and to a greater degree than common H2 S donors sodium sulfide (Na2 S) and GYY4137. BDP-NAC also rescued cells more effectively than a non-persulfide-releasing control compound in concert with common H2 S donors and thiols.
Project description:ABSTRACT We recently identified the novel persulfide sensor SqrR that functions as a master regulator of sulfide-dependent gene expression in the purple photosynthetic bacterium Rhodobacter capsulatus. SqrR binds to the promoter regions of target genes to repress their expression in the absence of sulfide, and the repressor activity is negated by sulfide treatment. SqrR has 3 cysteine residues, 2 of which are conserved in SqrR homologs from other bacteria: Cys41 and Cys107. SqrR forms an intramolecular tetrasulfide bond between Cys41 and Cys107 when exposed to persulfide, which results in loss of the DNA-binding activity in vitro. Here, we address the mechanism through which these cysteine residues are modified by persulfides. We show that the predicted pKa value of Cys107, as revealed by a putative SqrR structural model, is lower than that of Cys41. Furthermore, C41S SqrR in which Cys41 was changed to serine forms an intermolecular disulfide-bond between Cys107 of 2 SqrRs, suggesting high nucleophilic reactivity of Cy107. These data suggest that Cys107 and Cys41 function as attacking Cys and resolving Cys, respectively; this occurs during tetrasulfide-bond formation of WT SqrR, when it is exposed to persulfide.
Project description:Hydrogen sulfide is ubiquitous in biological systems and exerts function over a wide range of important physiological processes. Complementing free H2S, the reductant-labile sulfur pool plays significant roles in the translocation and action of sulfide, however the chemistry of reductant-labile sulfide sources has not been studied systematically. Using a combination of NMR and UV-Vis spectroscopy, we investigated the spectroscopic properties and reactivity of three isolated organic persulfides and report a simple model for persulfide reactivity, including their roles as nucleophiles, electrophiles, and sulfide donors.