Structural investigation on WlaRG from Campylobacter jejuni: A sugar aminotransferase.
ABSTRACT: Campylobacter jejuni is a Gram-negative bacterium that represents a leading cause of human gastroenteritis worldwide. Of particular concern is the link between C. jejuni infections and the subsequent development of Guillain-Barré syndrome, an acquired autoimmune disorder leading to paralysis. All Gram-negative bacteria contain complex glycoconjugates anchored to their outer membranes, but in most strains of C. jejuni, this lipoglycan lacks the O-antigen repeating units. Recent mass spectrometry analyses indicate that the C. jejuni 81116 (Penner serotype HS:6) lipoglycan contains two dideoxyhexosamine residues, and enzymological assay data show that this bacterial strain can synthesize both dTDP-3-acetamido-3,6-dideoxy-d-glucose and dTDP-3-acetamido-3,6-dideoxy-d-galactose. The focus of this investigation is on WlaRG from C. jejuni, which plays a key role in the production of these unusual sugars by functioning as a pyridoxal 5'-phosphate dependent aminotransferase. Here, we describe the first three-dimensional structures of the enzyme in various complexes determined to resolutions of 1.7 Å or higher. Of particular significance are the external aldimine structures of WlaRG solved in the presence of either dTDP-3-amino-3,6-dideoxy-d-galactose or dTDP-3-amino-3,6-dideoxy-d-glucose. These models highlight the manner in which WlaRG can accommodate sugars with differing stereochemistries about their C-4' carbon positions. In addition, we present a corrected structure of WbpE, a related sugar aminotransferase from Pseudomonas aeruginosa, solved to 1.3 Å resolution.
Project description:3-Acetamido-3,6-dideoxy-alpha-d-glucose or Quip3NAc is an unusual deoxyamino sugar found in the O-antigens of some Gram-negative bacteria and in the S-layers of Gram-positive bacteria. It is synthesized in these organisms as a dTDP-linked sugar via the action of five enzymes. The focus of this investigation is on QdtB from Thermoanaerobacterium thermosaccharolyticum E207-71, a PLP-dependent aminotransferase that catalyzes the penultimate step in the production of dTDP-Quip3NAc. For this analysis, the enzyme was crystallized in the presence of its product, dTDP-Quip3N, and the structure was solved and refined to 2.15 A resolution. QdtB is a dimer, and its overall fold places it into the well-characterized aspartate aminotransferase superfamily. Electron density corresponding to the bound product reveals the presence of a Schiff base between C-4' of the PLP cofactor and the amino nitrogen of the sugar. Those amino acid side chains involved in binding the dTDP-sugar into the active site include Tyr 183, His 309, and Tyr 310 from subunit 1 and Lys 219 from subunit 2. Notably there is a decided lack of interactions between the pyranosyl C-4' hydroxyl of the dTDP-sugar and the protein. In keeping with this observation, we show that QdtB can also turn over dTDP-3-acetamido-3,6-dideoxy-alpha-d-galactose. This investigation represents the first structural analysis of a sugar-modifying aminotransferase with a bound product in its active site that functions at the C-3' rather than the C-4' position of the hexose.
Project description:N-formylated sugars are found on the lipopolysaccharides of various pathogenic Gram negative bacteria including Campylobacter jejuni 81116, Francisella tularensis, Providencia alcalifaciens O30, and Providencia alcalifaciens O40. The last step in the biosynthetic pathways for these unusual sugars is catalyzed by N-formyltransferases that utilize N10-formyltetrahydrofolate as the carbon source. The substrates are dTDP-linked amino sugars with the functional groups installed at either the C-3' or C-4' positions of the pyranosyl rings. Here we describe a structural and enzymological investigation of the putative N-formyltransferase, FdtF, from Salmonella enterica O60. In keeping with its proposed role in the organism, the kinetic data reveal that the enzyme is more active with dTDP-3-amino-3,6-dideoxy-d-galactose than with dTDP-3-amino-3,6-dideoxy-d-glucose. The structural data demonstrate that the enzyme contains, in addition to the canonical N-formyltransferase fold, an ankyrin repeat moiety that houses a second dTDP-sugar binding pocket. This is only the second time an ankyrin repeat has been shown to be involved in small molecule binding. The research described herein represents the first structural analysis of a sugar N-formyltransferase that specifically functions on dTDP-3-amino-3,6-dideoxy-d-galactose in vivo and thus adds to our understanding of these intriguing enzymes.
Project description:The Gram-negative bacterium Campylobacter jejuni 81116 (Penner serotype HS:6) has a class E lipooligosaccharide (LOS) biosynthesis locus containing 19 genes, which encode for 11 putative glycosyltransferases, 1 lipid A acyltransferase and 7 enzymes thought to be involved in the biosynthesis of dideoxyhexosamine (ddHexN) moieties. Although the LOS outer core structure of C. jejuni 81116 is still unknown, recent mass spectrometry analyses suggest that it contains acetylated forms of two ddHexN residues. For this investigation, five of the genes encoding enzymes reportedly involved in the biosyntheses of these sugar residues were examined, rmlA, rmlB, wlaRA, wlaRB and wlaRG. Specifically, these genes were cloned and expressed in Escherichia coli, and the corresponding enzymes were purified and tested for biochemical activity. Here we present data demonstrating that RmlA functions as a glucose-1-phosphate thymidylyltransferase and that RmlB is a thymidine diphosphate (dTDP)-glucose 4,6-dehydratase. We also show, through nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy and mass spectrometry analyses, that WlaRG, when utilized in coupled assays with either WlaRA or WlaRB and dTDP-4-keto-6-deoxyglucose, results in the production of either dTDP-3-amino-3,6-dideoxy-d-galactose (dTDP-Fuc3N) or dTDP-3-amino-3,6-dideoxy-d-glucose (dTDP-Qui3N), respectively. In addition, the X-ray crystallographic structures of the 3,4-ketoisomerases, WlaRA and WlaRB, were determined to 2.14 and 2.0 Å resolutions, respectively. Taken together, the data reported herein demonstrate that C. jejuni 81116 utilizes five enzymes to synthesize dTDP-Fuc3N or dTDP-Qui3N and that WlaRG, an aminotransferase, can function on sugars with differing stereochemistry about their C-4' carbons. Importantly, the data reveal that C. jejuni 81116 has the ability to synthesize two isomeric ddHexN forms.
Project description:Derivatives of 3-amino-3,6-dideoxyhexoses are widespread in Nature. They are part of the repeating units of lipopolysaccharide O-antigens, of the glycan moiety of S-layer (bacterial cell surface layer) glycoproteins and also of many antibiotics. In the present study, we focused on the elucidation of the biosynthesis pathway of dTDP-alpha-D-Quip3NAc (dTDP-3-acetamido-3,6-dideoxy-alpha-D-glucose) from the Gram-positive, anaerobic, thermophilic organism Thermoanaerobacterium thermosaccharolyticum E207-71, which carries Quip3NAc in its S-layer glycan. The biosynthesis of dTDP-alpha-D-Quip3NAc involves five enzymes, namely a transferase, a dehydratase, an isomerase, a transaminase and a transacetylase, and follows a pathway similar to that of dTDP-alpha-D-Fucp3NAc (dTDP-3-acetamido-3,6-dideoxy-alpha-D-galactose) biosynthesis in Aneurinibacillus thermoaerophilus L420-91(T). The ORFs (open reading frames) of interest were cloned, overexpressed in Escherichia coli and purified. To elucidate the enzymatic cascade, the different products were purified by HPLC and characterized by NMR spectroscopy. The initiating reactions catalysed by the glucose-1-phosphate thymidylyltransferase RmlA and the dTDP-D-glucose-4,6-dehydratase RmlB are well established. The subsequent isomerase was shown to be capable of forming a dTDP-3-oxo-6-deoxy-D-glucose intermediate from the RmlB product dTDP-4-oxo-6-deoxy-D-glucose, whereas the isomerase involved in the dTDP-alpha-D-Fucp3NAc pathway synthesizes dTDP-3-oxo-6-deoxy-D-galactose. The subsequent reaction steps of either pathway involve a transaminase and a transacetylase, leading to the specific production of nucleotide-activated 3-acetamido-3,6-dideoxy-alpha-D-glucose and 3-acetamido-3,6-dideoxy-alpha-D-galactose respectively. Sequence comparison of the ORFs responsible for the biosynthesis of dTDP-alpha-D-Quip3NAc revealed homologues in Gram-negative as well as in antibiotic-producing Gram-positive bacteria. There is strong evidence that the elucidated biosynthesis pathway may also be valid for LPS (lipopolysaccharide) O-antigen structures and antibiotic precursors.
Project description:3-Acetamido-3,6-dideoxy-d-galactose (Fuc3NAc) and 3-acetamido-3,6-dideoxy-d-glucose (Qui3NAc) are unusual sugars found on the lipopolysaccharides of Gram-negative bacteria and on the S-layers of Gram-positive bacteria. The 3,4-ketoisomerases, referred to as FdtA and QdtA, catalyze the third steps in the respective biosynthetic pathways for these sugars. Whereas both enzymes utilize the same substrate, the stereochemistries of their products are different. Specifically, the hydroxyl groups at the hexose C-4' positions assume the "galactose" and "glucose" configurations in the FdtA and QdtA products, respectively. In 2007 we reported the structure of the apoform of FdtA from Aneurinibacillus thermoaerophilus, which was followed in 2014 by the X-ray analysis of QdtA from Thermoanaerobacterium thermosaccharolyticum as a binary complex. Both of these enzymes belong to the cupin superfamily. Here we report a combined structural and enzymological study to explore the manner in which these enzymes control the stereochemistry of their products. Various site-directed mutant proteins of each enzyme were constructed, and their dTDP-sugar products were analyzed by NMR spectroscopy. In addition, the kinetic parameters for these protein variants were measured, and the structure of one, namely, the QdtA Y17R/R97H double mutant form, was determined to 2.3-Å resolution. Finally, in an attempt to obtain a model of FdtA with a bound dTDP-linked sugar, the 3,4-ketoisomerase domain of a bifunctional enzyme from Shewanella denitrificans was cloned, purified, and crystallized in the presence of a dTDP-linked sugar analogue. Taken together, the results from this investigation demonstrate that it is possible to convert a "galacto" enzyme into a "gluco" enzyme and vice versa.
Project description:The O-antigens, which are components of the outer membranes of Gram-negative bacteria, are responsible for the wide species variations seen in nature and are thought to play a role in bacterial virulence. They often contain unusual dideoxysugars such as 3,6-dideoxy-3-formamido-d-glucose (Qui3NFo). Here, we describe a structural and functional investigation of the protein C8J_1081 from Campylobacter jejuni 81116, which is involved in the biosynthesis of Qui3NFo. Specifically, the enzyme, hereafter referred to as WlaRD, catalyzes the N-formylation of dTDP-3,6-dideoxy-3-amino-d-glucose (dTDP-Qui3N) using N(10)-formyltetrahydrofolate as the carbon source. For this investigation, seven X-ray structures of WlaRD, in complexes with various dTDP-linked sugars and cofactors, were determined to resolutions of 1.9 Å or better. One of the models, with bound N(10)-formyltetrahydrofolate and dTDP, represents the first glimpse of an N-formyltransferase with its natural cofactor. Another model contains the reaction products, tetrahydrofolate and dTDP-Qui3NFo. In combination, the structures provide snapshots of the WlaRD active site before and after catalysis. On the basis of these structures, three amino acid residues were targeted for study: Asn 94, His 96, and Asp 132. Mutations of any of these residues resulted in a complete loss of enzymatic activity. Given the position of His 96 in the active site, it can be postulated that it functions as the active site base to remove a proton from the sugar amino group as it attacks the carbonyl carbon of the N-10 formyl group of the cofactor. Enzyme assays demonstrate that WlaRD is also capable of utilizing dTDP-3,6-dideoxy-3-amino-d-galactose (dTDP-Fuc3N) as a substrate, albeit at a much reduced catalytic efficiency.
Project description:3-Acetamido-3,6-dideoxy-alpha-D-glucose or Quip3NAc is an unusual dideoxy sugar found in the O-antigens of various Gram-negative bacteria and in the S-layer glycoprotein glycans of some Gram-positive bacteria. It is produced in these organisms as a dTDP-linked sugar, with five enzymes ultimately required for its biosynthesis. The focus of this investigation is on the enzyme QdtC, a CoA-dependent N-acetyltransferase that catalyzes the last step in the Quip3NAc biosynthetic pathway. For this analysis, three crystal structures were determined: the wild-type enzyme in the presence of acetyl-CoA and two ternary complexes of the enzyme with CoA and either dTDP-D-Quip3N or dTDP-3-amino-3,6-didexoy-alpha-D-galactose (dTDP-D-Fucp3N). Each subunit of the trimeric enzyme is dominated by a left-handed beta-helix motif with 11 turns. The three active sites are located at the subunit-subunit interfaces, and the two dTDP-sugar ligands employed in this study bind to the protein in nearly identical manners. Those residues responsible for anchoring the hexose moieties of the dTDP-sugars to the protein include Glu 141, Asn 159, and Asp 160 from one subunit and His 134 from another subunit. To probe the roles of various amino acid residues in the catalytic mechanism of the enzyme, 10 site-directed mutant proteins were constructed and their kinetic parameters measured. On the basis of these data, a catalytic mechanism is proposed for QdtC in which the acetylation of the sugar amino group does not require a catalytic base provided by the protein. Rather, the sulfur of CoA functions as the ultimate proton acceptor.
Project description:Recent studies have demonstrated that the O-antigens of some pathogenic bacteria such as Brucella abortus, Francisella tularensis, and Campylobacter jejuni contain quite unusual N-formylated sugars (3-formamido-3,6-dideoxy-d-glucose or 4-formamido-4,6-dideoxy-d-glucose). Typically, four enzymes are required for the formation of such sugars: a thymidylyltransferase, a 4,6-dehydratase, a pyridoxal 5'-phosphate or PLP-dependent aminotransferase, and an N-formyltransferase. To date, there have been no published reports of N-formylated sugars associated with Mycobacterium tuberculosis. A recent investigation from our laboratories, however, has demonstrated that one gene product from M. tuberculosis, Rv3404c, functions as a sugar N-formyltransferase. Given that M. tuberculosis produces l-rhamnose, both a thymidylyltransferase (Rv0334) and a 4,6-dehydratase (Rv3464) required for its formation have been identified. Thus, there is one remaining enzyme needed for the production of an N-formylated sugar in M. tuberculosis, namely a PLP-dependent aminotransferase. Here we demonstrate that the M. tuberculosis rv3402c gene encodes such an enzyme. Our data prove that M. tuberculosis contains all of the enzymatic activities required for the formation of dTDP-4-formamido-4,6-dideoxy-d-glucose. Indeed, the rv3402c gene product likely contributes to virulence or persistence during infection, though its temporal expression and location remain to be determined.
Project description:N-Formylated sugars such as 3,6-dideoxy-3-formamido-d-glucose (Qui3NFo) have been observed on the lipopolysaccharides of various pathogenic bacteria, including Providencia alcalifaciens, a known cause of gastroenteritis. These unusual carbohydrates are synthesized in vivo as dTDP-linked sugars. The biosynthetic pathway for the production of dTDP-Qui3NFo requires five enzymes with the last step catalyzed by an N-formyltransferase that utilizes N(10)-tetrahydrofolate as a cofactor. Here we describe a structural and functional investigation of the P. alcalifaciens N-formyltransferase, hereafter referred to as QdtF. For this analysis, the structure of the dimeric enzyme was determined in the presence of N(5)-formyltetrahydrofolate, a stable cofactor, and dTDP-3,6-dideoxy-3-amino-d-glucose (dTDP-Qui3N) to 1.5 Å resolution. The overall fold of the subunit consists of three regions with the N-terminal and middle motifs followed by an ankyrin repeat domain. Whereas the ankyrin repeat is a common eukaryotic motif involved in protein-protein interactions, reports of its presence in prokaryotic enzymes have been limited. Unexpectedly, this ankyrin repeat houses a second binding pocket for dTDP-Qui3N, which is characterized by extensive interactions between the protein and the ligand. To address the effects of this second binding site on catalysis, a site-directed mutant protein, W305A, was constructed. Kinetic analyses demonstrated that the catalytic activity of the W305A variant was reduced by approximately 7-fold. The structure of the W305A mutant protein in complex with N(5)-formyltetrahydrofolate and dTDP-Qui3N was subsequently determined to 1.5 Å resolution. The electron density map clearly showed that ligand binding had been completely abolished in the auxiliary pocket. The wild-type enzyme was also tested for activity against dTDP-3,6-dideoxy-3-amino-d-galactose (dTDP-Fuc3N) as a substrate. Strikingly, sigmoidal kinetics indicating homotropic allosteric behavior were observed. Although the identity of the ligand that regulates QdtF activity in vivo is at present unknown, our results still provide the first example of an ankyrin repeat functioning in small molecule binding.
Project description:Enzymes belonging to the GNAT superfamily are widely distributed in nature where they play key roles in the transfer of acyl groups from acyl-CoAs to primary amine acceptors. The amine acceptors run the gamut from histones to aminoglycoside antibiotics to small molecules such as serotonin. Whereas those family members that function on histones have been extensively studied, the GNAT enzymes that employ nucleotide-linked sugars as their substrates have not been well characterized. Indeed, though the structures of two of these "amino sugar" GNAT enzymes have been determined within the past 10 years, details concerning their active site architectures have been limited because of a lack of bound nucleotide-linked sugar substrates. Here we describe a combined structural and biochemical analysis of FdhC from Acinetobacter nosocomialis O2. On the basis of bioinformatics, it was postulated that FdhC catalyzes the transfer of a 3-hydroxybutanoyl group from 3-hydroxylbutanoyl-CoA to dTDP-3-amino-3,6-dideoxy-d-galactose, to yield an unusual sugar that is ultimately incorporated into the surface polysaccharides of the bacterium. We present data confirming this activity. In addition, the structures of two ternary complexes of FdhC, in the presence of CoA and either 3-hydroxybutanoylamino-3,6-dideoxy-d-galactose or 3-hydroxybutanoylamino-3,6-dideoxy-d-glucose, were solved by X-ray crystallographic analyses to high resolution. Kinetic parameters were determined, and activity assays demonstrated that FdhC can also utilize acetyl-CoA, 3-methylcrotonyl-CoA, or hexanoyl-CoA as acyl donors, albeit at reduced rates. Site-directed mutagenesis experiments were conducted to probe the catalytic mechanism of FdhC. Taken together, the data presented herein provide significantly new molecular insight into those GNAT superfamily members that function on nucleotide-linked amino sugars.