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The cyclooxygenases COX-1 and COX-2 oxygenate arachidonic acid (AA) to prostaglandin H (PGH). COX-2 also oxygenates the endocannabinoids 2-arachidonoylglycerol (2-AG) and arachidonoylethanolamide (AEA) to the corresponding PGH analogs. Both enzymes are targets of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), but NSAID-mediated COX inhibition is associated with gastrointestinal toxicity. One potential strategy to counter this toxicity is to also inhibit fatty acid amide hydrolase (FAAH), which hydrolyzes bioactive fatty acid ethanolamides (FAEs) into fatty acids and ethanolamine. Here, we investigated the mechanism of COX inhibition by ARN2508, an NSAID that inhibits both COXs and FAAH with high potency, target selectivity, and decreased gastrointestinal toxicity in mouse models, presumably due to its ability to increase levels of FAEs. A 2.27-Å-resolution X-ray crystal structure of the COX-2·()-ARN2508 complex reveals that ARN2508 adopts a binding pose similar to that of its parent NSAID flurbiprofen. However, ARN2508's alkyl tail is inserted deep into the top channel, an active site region not exploited by any previously reported NSAID. As for flurbiprofen, ARN2508's potency is highly dependent on the configuration of the α-methyl group. Thus, ()-ARN2508 is more potent than ()-ARN2508 for inhibition of AA oxygenation by both COXs and 2-AG oxygenation by COX-2. Also, similarly to ()-flurbiprofen, ()-ARN2508 exhibits substrate selectivity for inhibition of 2-AG oxygenation. Site-directed mutagenesis confirms the importance of insertion of the alkyl tail into the top channel for ()-ARN2508's potency and suggests a role for Ser-530 as a determinant of the inhibitor's slow rate of inhibition compared with that of ()-flurbiprofen.
Ribonucleotides are the natural analogs of deoxyribonucleotides, which can be misinserted by DNA polymerases, leading to the most abundant DNA lesions in genomes. During replication, DNA polymerases tolerate patches of ribonucleotides on the parental strands to different extents. The majority of human DNA polymerases have been reported to misinsert ribonucleotides into genomes. However, only PrimPol, DNA polymerase α, telomerase, and the mitochondrial human DNA polymerase (hpol) γ have been shown to tolerate an entire RNA strand. Y-family hpol η is known for translesion synthesis opposite the UV-induced DNA lesion cyclobutane pyrimidine dimer and was recently found to incorporate ribonucleotides into DNA. Here, we report that hpol η is able to bind DNA/DNA, RNA/DNA, and DNA/RNA duplexes with similar affinities. In addition, hpol η, as well as another Y-family DNA polymerase, hpol κ, accommodates RNA as one of the two strands during primer extension, mainly by inserting dNMPs opposite unmodified templates or DNA lesions, such as 8-oxo-2'-deoxyguanosine or cyclobutane pyrimidine dimer, even in the presence of an equal amount of the DNA/DNA substrate. The discovery of this RNA-accommodating ability of hpol η redefines the traditional concept of human DNA polymerases and indicates potential new functions of hpol η .
© 2017 by The American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Inc.
Cytochrome P450 (P450, CYP) research provides many opportunities for the application of kinetic isotope effect (KIE) strategies. P450s collectively catalyze oxidations of more substrates than any other group of enzymes, and CH bond cleavage is a major feature in a large fraction of these reactions. The presence of a significant primary deuterium KIE is evidence that hydrogen abstraction is at least partially rate-limiting in the reactions, and this appears to be the case in many P450 reactions. The first report of a KIE in (P450-linked) drug metabolism appeared in 1961 (for morphine N-demethylation), and in a number of cases, it has been possible to modulate the in vivo metabolism or toxicity of chemicals by deuterium substitution. A number of efforts are in progress to utilize deuterium substitution to alter the metabolism of drugs in an advantageous manner.
© 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Recently, zebrafish and human cytochrome P450 (P450) 27C1 enzymes have been shown to be retinoid 3,4-desaturases. The enzyme is unusual among mammalian P450s in that the predominant oxidation is a desaturation and in that hydroxylation represents only a minor pathway. We show by proteomic analysis that P450 27C1 is localized to human skin, with two proteins of different sizes present, one being a cleavage product of the full-length form. P450 27C1 oxidized all--retinol to 3,4-dehydroretinol, 4-hydroxy (OH) retinol, and 3-OH retinol in a 100:3:2 ratio. Neither 3-OH nor 4-OH retinol was an intermediate in desaturation. No kinetic burst was observed in the steady state; neither the rate of substrate binding nor product release was rate-limiting. Ferric P450 27C1 reduction by adrenodoxin was 3-fold faster in the presence of the substrate and was ∼5-fold faster than the overall turnover. Kinetic isotope effects of 1.5-2.3 (on / ) were observed with 3,3-, 4,4-, and 3,3,4,4-deuterated retinol. Deuteration at C-4 produced a 4-fold increase in 3-hydroxylation due to metabolic switching, with no observable effect on 4-hydroxylation. Deuteration at C-3 produced a strong kinetic isotope effect for 3-hydroxylation but not 4-hydroxylation. Analysis of the products of deuterated retinol showed a lack of scrambling of a putative allylic radical at C-3 and C-4. We conclude that the most likely catalytic mechanism begins with abstraction of a hydrogen atom from C-4 (or possibly C-3) initiating the desaturation pathway, followed by a sequential abstraction of a hydrogen atom or proton-coupled electron transfer. Adrenodoxin reduction and hydrogen abstraction both contribute to rate limitation.
© 2017 by The American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Inc.
Cyclooxygenase-2 catalyses the biosynthesis of prostaglandins from arachidonic acid but also the biosynthesis of prostaglandin glycerol esters (PG-Gs) from 2-arachidonoylglycerol. Previous studies identified PG-Gs as signalling molecules involved in inflammation. Thus, the glyceryl ester of prostaglandin E, PGE-G, mobilizes Ca and activates protein kinase C and ERK, suggesting the involvement of a G protein-coupled receptor (GPCR). To identify the endogenous receptor for PGE-G, we performed a subtractive screening approach where mRNA from PGE-G response-positive and -negative cell lines was subjected to transcriptome-wide RNA sequencing analysis. We found several GPCRs that are only expressed in the PGE-G responder cell lines. Using a set of functional readouts in heterologous and endogenous expression systems, we identified the UDP receptor P2Y as the specific target of PGE-G. We show that PGE-G and UDP are both agonists at P2Y, but they activate the receptor with extremely different EC values of ~1 pM and ~50 nM, respectively. The identification of the PGE-G/P2Y pair uncovers the signalling mode of PG-Gs as previously under-appreciated products of cyclooxygenase-2.
Matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs) are extracellular proteases that can cleave extracellular matrix and alter signaling pathways. They have been implicated in many disease states, but it has been difficult to understand the contribution of individual MMPs, as there are over 20 MMPs in vertebrates. The vertebrate MMPs have overlapping substrates, they exhibit genetic redundancy and compensation, and pharmacological inhibitors are non-specific. In contrast, there are only two MMP genes in Drosophila, DmMmp1 and DmMmp2, which makes Drosophila an attractive system to analyze the basis of MMP specificity. Previously, Drosophila MMPs have been categorized by their pericellular localization, as Mmp1 appeared to be secreted and Mmp2 appeared to be membrane-anchored, suggesting that protein localization was the critical distinction in this small MMP family. We report here that products of both genes are found at the cell surface and released into media. Additionally, we show that products of both genes contain GPI-anchors, and unexpectedly, that GPI-anchored MMPs promote cell adhesion when they are rendered inactive. Finally, by using new reagents and assays, we show that the two MMPs cleave different substrates, suggesting that this is the important distinction within this smallest MMP family.
Human cytochrome P450 (P450) 3A4 is involved in the metabolism of one-half of marketed drugs and shows cooperative interactions with some substrates and other ligands. The interaction between P450 3A4 and the known allosteric effector 7,8-benzoflavone (α-naphthoflavone, αNF) was characterized using steady-state fluorescence spectroscopy. The binding interaction of P450 3A4 and αNF effectively quenched the fluorescence of both the enzyme and ligand. The Hill Equation and Stern-Volmer fluorescence quenching models were used to evaluate binding of ligand to enzyme. P450 3A4 fluorescence was quenched by titration with αNF; at the relatively higher [αNF]/[P450 3A4] ratios in this experiment, two weaker quenching interactions were revealed (K 1.8-2.5 and 6.5 μM). A range is given for the stronger interaction since αNF quenching of P450 3A4 fluorescence changed the protein spectral profile: quenching of 315 nm emission was slightly more efficient (K 1.8 μM) than the quenching of protein fluorescence at 335 and 355 nm (K 2.5 and 2.1 μM, respectively). In the reverse titration, αNF fluorescence was quenched by P450 3A4; at the lower [αNF]/[P450 3A4] ratios here, two strong quenching interactions were revealed (K 0.048 and 1.0 μM). Thus, four binding interactions of αNF to P450 3A4 are suggested by this study, one of which may be newly recognized and which could affect studies of drug oxidations by this important enzyme.
Passive macromolecular diffusion through nuclear pore complexes (NPCs) is thought to decrease dramatically beyond a 30-60-kD size threshold. Using thousands of independent time-resolved fluorescence microscopy measurements in vivo, we show that the NPC lacks such a firm size threshold; instead, it forms a soft barrier to passive diffusion that intensifies gradually with increasing molecular mass in both the wild-type and mutant strains with various subsets of phenylalanine-glycine (FG) domains and different levels of baseline passive permeability. Brownian dynamics simulations replicate these findings and indicate that the soft barrier results from the highly dynamic FG repeat domains and the diffusing macromolecules mutually constraining and competing for available volume in the interior of the NPC, setting up entropic repulsion forces. We found that FG domains with exceptionally high net charge and low hydropathy near the cytoplasmic end of the central channel contribute more strongly to obstruction of passive diffusion than to facilitated transport, revealing a compartmentalized functional arrangement within the NPC.
© 2016 Timney et al.
Cellular membranes display a diversity of functions that are conferred by the unique composition and organization of their proteins and lipids. One important aspect of lipid organization is the asymmetric distribution of phospholipids (PLs) across the plasma membrane. The unequal distribution of key PLs between the cytofacial and exofacial leaflets of the bilayer creates physical surface tension that can be used to bend the membrane; and like Ca, a chemical gradient that can be used to transduce biochemical signals. PL flippases in the type IV P-type ATPase (P4-ATPase) family are the principle transporters used to set and repair this PL gradient and the asymmetric organization of these membranes are encoded by the substrate specificity of these enzymes. Thus, understanding the mechanisms of P4-ATPase substrate specificity will help reveal their role in membrane organization and cell biology. Further, decoding the structural determinants of substrate specificity provides investigators the opportunity to mutationally tune this specificity to explore the role of particular PL substrates in P4-ATPase cellular functions. This work reviews the role of P4-ATPases in membrane biology, presents our current understanding of P4-ATPase substrate specificity, and discusses how these fundamental aspects of P4-ATPase enzymology may be used to enhance our knowledge of cellular membrane biology.
Phospholipid flippases in the type IV P-type ATPase (P4-ATPases) family establish membrane asymmetry and play critical roles in vesicular transport, cell polarity, signal transduction, and neurologic development. All characterized P4-ATPases flip glycerophospholipids across the bilayer to the cytosolic leaflet of the membrane, but how these enzymes distinguish glycerophospholipids from sphingolipids is not known. We used a directed evolution approach to examine the molecular mechanisms through which P4-ATPases discriminate substrate backbone. A mutagenesis screen in the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae has identified several gain-of-function mutations in the P4-ATPase Dnf1 that facilitate the transport of a novel lipid substrate, sphingomyelin. We found that a highly conserved asparagine (N220) in the first transmembrane segment is a key enforcer of glycerophospholipid selection, and specific substitutions at this site allow transport of sphingomyelin.