A Tool for the Import of Natural and Unnatural Nucleoside Triphosphates into Bacteria.
ABSTRACT: Nucleoside triphosphates play a central role in biology, but efforts to study these roles have proven difficult because the levels of triphosphates are tightly regulated in a cell and because individual triphosphates can be difficult to label or modify. In addition, many synthetic biology efforts are focused on the development of unnatural nucleoside triphosphates that perform specific functions in the cellular environment. In general, both of these efforts would be facilitated by a general means to directly introduce desired triphosphates into cells. Previously, we demonstrated that recombinant expression of a nucleoside triphosphate transporter from Phaeodactylum tricornutum (PtNTT2) in Escherichia coli functions to import triphosphates that are added to the media. Here, to explore the generality and utility of this approach, we report a structure-activity relationship study of PtNTT2. Using a conventional competitive uptake inhibition assay, we characterize the effects of nucleobase, sugar, and triphosphate modification, and then develop an LC-MS/MS assay to directly measure the effects of the modifications on import. Lastly, we use the transporter to import radiolabeled or 2'-fluoro-modified triphosphates and quantify their incorporation into DNA and RNA. The results demonstrate the general utility of the PtNTT2-mediated import of natural or modified nucleoside triphosphates for different molecular or synthetic biology applications.
Project description:The nucleoside triphosphates of N6-(2-deoxy-alpha,beta-d-erythro-pentofuranosyl)-2,6-diamino-4-hydroxy-5-formamidopyrimidine (Fapy.dGTP) and its C-nucleoside analogue (beta-C-Fapy.dGTP) were synthesized. The lability of the formamide group required that nucleoside triphosphate formation be carried out using an umpolung strategy in which pyrophosphate was activated toward nucleophilic attack. The Klenow fragment of DNA polymerase I from Escherichia coli accepted Fapy.dGTP and beta-C-Fapy.dGTP as substrates much less efficiently than it did dGTP. Subsequent extension of a primer containing either modified nucleotide was less affected compared to when the native nucleotide is present at the 3'-terminus. The specificity constants are sufficiently large that nucleoside triphosphate incorporation could account for the level of Fapy.dG observed in cells if 1% of the dGTP pool is converted to Fapy.dGTP. Similarly, polymerase-mediated introduction of beta-C-Fapy.dG could be useful for incorporating useful amounts of this nonhydrolyzable analogue for use as an inhibitor of base excision repair. The kinetic viability of these processes is enhanced by inefficient hydrolysis of Fapy.dGTP and beta-C-Fapy.dGTP by MutT, the E. coli enzyme that releases pyrophosphate and the corresponding nucleoside monophosphate upon reaction with structurally related nucleoside triphosphates.
Project description:[structure: see text] The alpha-l-threofuranosyl nucleoside triphosphates of T, G, and D (tTTP, tGTP, and tDTP) were synthesized from the described 2'-O-DMT-protected derivatives using the Eckstein method, while the corresponding C derivative (tCTP) was prepared from the 2'-O-acetyl derivative. The prepared alpha-l-threofuranosyl nucleoside triphosphates, despite being one carbon shorter than the native 2'-deoxyfuranosyl nucleoside triphosphates, are effective substrates for selected DNA polymerases.
Project description:Nucleoside 5'-triphosphates (NTPs) play key roles in biology and medicine. However, these compounds are notoriously difficult to synthesize. We describe a one-pot method to prepare NTPs from nucleoside 5'-H-phosphonate monoesters via pyridinium phosphoramidates, and we used this approach to synthesize ATP, UTP, GTP, CTP, ribavirin-TP, and 6-methylpurine ribonucleoside-TP (6MePTP). Poliovirus RNA-dependent RNA polymerase efficiently employed 6MePTP as a substrate, suggesting that the cognate nucleoside, a poorly understood antiviral agent, may damage viral RNA.
Project description:All natural organisms store genetic information in a four-letter, two-base-pair genetic alphabet. The expansion of the genetic alphabet with two synthetic unnatural nucleotides that selectively pair to form an unnatural base pair (UBP) would increase the information storage potential of DNA, and semisynthetic organisms (SSOs) that stably harbor this expanded alphabet would thereby have the potential to store and retrieve increased information. Toward this goal, we previously reported that Escherichia coli grown in the presence of the unnatural nucleoside triphosphates dNaMTP and d5SICSTP, and provided with the means to import them via expression of a plasmid-borne nucleoside triphosphate transporter, replicates DNA containing a single dNaM-d5SICS UBP. Although this represented an important proof-of-concept, the nascent SSO grew poorly and, more problematically, required growth under controlled conditions and even then was unable to indefinitely store the unnatural information, which is clearly a prerequisite for true semisynthetic life. Here, to fortify and vivify the nascent SSO, we engineered the transporter, used a more chemically optimized UBP, and harnessed the power of the bacterial immune response by using Cas9 to eliminate DNA that had lost the UBP. The optimized SSO grows robustly, constitutively imports the unnatural triphosphates, and is able to indefinitely retain multiple UBPs in virtually any sequence context. This SSO is thus a form of life that can stably store genetic information using a six-letter, three-base-pair alphabet.
Project description:A polymer-bound alpha,beta-methylene-beta-triphosphitylating reagent was synthesized and subjected to reactions with unprotected nucleosides, followed by oxidation, deprotection of cyanoethoxy groups, and acidic cleavage to afford nucleoside 5'-O-alpha,beta-methylene-beta-triphosphates. Among all the compounds, cytidine 5'-O-alpha,beta-methylene-beta-triphosphate inhibited RNase H activity of HIV-1 reverse transcriptase with a K(i) value of 225 microM.
Project description:Modified nucleoside triphosphates (NTPs) represent powerful building blocks to generate nucleic acids with novel properties by enzymatic synthesis. We have recently demonstrated the access to 2'-SeCH(3)-uridine and 2'-SeCH(3)-cytidine derivatized RNAs for applications in RNA crystallography, using the corresponding nucleoside triphosphates and distinct mutants of T7 RNA polymerase. In the present note, we introduce the chemical synthesis of the novel 2'-methylseleno-2'-deoxyadenosine and -guanosine 5'-triphosphates (2'-SeCH(3)-ATP and 2'-SeCH(3)-GTP) that represent further candidates for the enzymatic RNA synthesis with engineered RNA polymerases.
Project description:A method was developed for the introduction of [32p]Pi specifically into the beta-position of ATP and GTP. The method is based on two separate reactions involving (a) phosphorolysis of poly(A) or poly(G) [Soreq, Nudel, Salomon, Revel & Littauer (1974) J. Mol Biol. 88, 233-245] in the presence of [32P]Pi and (b) conversion of the labelled diphosphate into the corresponding triphosphate by transferring the active phosphate group from 1,3-diphosphoglycerate in a coupled reaction as decribed by Glynn & Chappell [(1964) Biochem. J. 90, 147-149]. Radioactivity in the beta- and gamma-phosphate groups of the labelled triphosphate was measured by using polynucleotide kinase. No detectable radioactivity was found in the gamma-phosphate group. The suitability of this method for the synthesis of other nucleoside triphosphates specifically labelled in the beta-position is discussed.
Project description:1. Periodate oxidation of the ribose ring was used to synthesize derivatives of nucleoside triphosphates. 2. These oxidized nucleoside triphosphates. 2. These oxidized nucleoside triphosphates are competitive inhibitors of RNA polymerase. 3. On incubation, together with NaBH4, these oxidized labelled nucleotides are covalently bound to Escherichia coli RNA polymerase. 4. Nucleoside triphosphate substrates decrease the extent of labelling. 5. A lysine residue in an alpha-subunit is labelled. 6. The significance of these results in relation to the location of the nucleotide-binding site is discussed.
Project description:Since at least the last common ancestor of all life on Earth, genetic information has been stored in a four-letter alphabet that is propagated and retrieved by the formation of two base pairs. The central goal of synthetic biology is to create new life forms and functions, and the most general route to this goal is the creation of semi-synthetic organisms whose DNA harbours two additional letters that form a third, unnatural base pair. Previous efforts to generate such semi-synthetic organisms culminated in the creation of a strain of Escherichia coli that, by virtue of a nucleoside triphosphate transporter from Phaeodactylum tricornutum, imports the requisite unnatural triphosphates from its medium and then uses them to replicate a plasmid containing the unnatural base pair dNaM-dTPT3. Although the semi-synthetic organism stores increased information when compared to natural organisms, retrieval of the information requires in vivo transcription of the unnatural base pair into mRNA and tRNA, aminoacylation of the tRNA with a non-canonical amino acid, and efficient participation of the unnatural base pair in decoding at the ribosome. Here we report the in vivo transcription of DNA containing dNaM and dTPT3 into mRNAs with two different unnatural codons and tRNAs with cognate unnatural anticodons, and their efficient decoding at the ribosome to direct the site-specific incorporation of natural or non-canonical amino acids into superfolder green fluorescent protein. The results demonstrate that interactions other than hydrogen bonding can contribute to every step of information storage and retrieval. The resulting semi-synthetic organism both encodes and retrieves increased information and should serve as a platform for the creation of new life forms and functions.
Project description:Mammalian brain ribosomes were found to be heat-labile. On preincubation of the ribosomes at 37 degrees C, their ability to participate in polypeptide-synthesis reactions was substantially diminished. Despite the sensitivity of ribosomal protein synthesis to heat-inactivation, preincubation resulted in no significant alterations in ribosomal sedimentation profiles or changes in the integrity of the ribosomal RNA. The thermolability of brain ribosomes was shown to be associated with their inability to bind both template RNA and aminoacyl-tRNA. Similar experiments with brain ribosomal subunits demonstrated that the small (40S) subunit was more sensitive to heat-inactivation than the large (60S) subunit. The presence of ATP (1mm) protected ribosomes from thermal inactivation, although this protection was shown to be temporary. The protection appeared to be specific to nucleoside triphosphates, since GTP and UTP also stabilized ribosomes to thermal denaturation whereas nucleoside diphosphates (ADP) and nucleoside monophosphates (AMP and cyclic AMP) did not alter ribosomal sensitivity to heat. Although 1mm concentrations of nucleoside triphosphates protected ribosomes from heat-inactivation, the presence of higher concentrations resulted in complete inactivation of ribosomal activity.