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See detailRapid Collapse into a Molten Globule Is Followed by Simple Two-State Kinetics in the Folding of Lysozyme from Bacteriophage lambda
Di Paolo, Alexandre ULg; Balbeur, D.; De Pauw, Edwin ULg et al

in Biochemistry (2010), 49

Stopped-flow fluorescence and circular dichroism spectroscopy have been used in combination with quenched-flow hydrogen exchange labeling, monitored by two-dimensional NMR and electrospray ionization mass ... [more ▼]

Stopped-flow fluorescence and circular dichroism spectroscopy have been used in combination with quenched-flow hydrogen exchange labeling, monitored by two-dimensional NMR and electrospray ionization mass spectrometry, to investigate the folding kinetics of lysozyme from bacteriophage lambda (lambda lysozyme) at pH 5.6, 20 degrees C. The first step in the folding of lambda lysozyme occurs very rapidly (tau < 1 ms) after refolding is initiated and involves both hydrophobic collapse and formation of a high content of secondary structure but only weak protection from (1)H/(2)H exchange and no fixed tertiary structure organization. This early folding step is reflected in the dead-time events observed in the far-UV CD and ANS fluorescence experiments. Following accumulation of this kinetic molten globule species, the secondary structural elements are stabilized and the majority (ca. 88%) of refolding molecules acquire native-like properties in a highly cooperative two-state process, with tau = 0.15 +/- 0.03 s. This is accompanied by the acquisition of substantial native-like protection from hydrogen exchange. A double-mixing experiment and the absence of a denaturant effect reveal that slow (tau = 5 +/- 1 s) folding of the remaining (ca. 12%) molecules is rate limited by the cis/trans isomerization of prolines that are trans in the folded enzyme. In addition, native state hydrogen exchange and classical denaturant unfolding experiments have been used to characterize the thermodynamic properties of the enzyme. In good agreement with previous crystallographic evidence, our results show that lambda lysozyme is a highly dynamic protein, with relatively low conformational stability (DeltaG degrees (N-U) = 25 +/- 2 kJ.mol(-1)). [less ▲]

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See detailFolding of class A beta-lactamases is rate-limited by peptide bond isomerization and occurs via parallel pathways.
Vandenameele, Julie ULg; Lejeune, Annabelle ULg; Di Paolo, Alexandre ULg et al

in Biochemistry (2010), 49(19), 4264-75

Class A beta-lactamases (M(r) approximately 29000) provide good models for studying the folding mechanism of large monomeric proteins. In particular, the highly conserved cis peptide bond between residues ... [more ▼]

Class A beta-lactamases (M(r) approximately 29000) provide good models for studying the folding mechanism of large monomeric proteins. In particular, the highly conserved cis peptide bond between residues 166 and 167 at the active site of these enzymes controls important steps in their refolding reaction. In this work, we analyzed how conformational folding, reactivation, and cis/trans peptide bond isomerizations are interrelated in the folding kinetics of beta-lactamases that differ in the nature of the cis peptide bond, which involves a Pro167 in the BS3 and TEM-1 enzyme, a Leu167 in the NMCA enzyme, and which is missing in the PER-1 enzyme. The analysis of folding by spectroscopic probes and by the regain of enzymatic activity in combination with double-mixing procedures indicates that conformational folding can proceed when the 166-167 bond is still in the incorrect trans form. The very slow trans --> cis isomerization of the Glu166-Xaa167 peptide bond, however, controls the final step of folding and is required for the regain of the enzymatic activity. This very slow phase is absent in the refolding of PER-1, in which the Glu166-Ala167 peptide bond is trans. The double-mixing experiments revealed that a second slow kinetic phase is caused by the cis/trans isomerization of prolines that are trans in the folded proteins. The folding of beta-lactamases is best described by a model that involves parallel pathways. It highlights the role of peptide bond cis/trans isomerization as a kinetic determinant of folding. [less ▲]

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See detailMutational analysis of VIM-2 reveals an essential determinant for metallo-beta-lactamase stability and folding.
Borgianni, Luisa; Vandenameele, Julie ULg; Matagne, André ULg et al

in Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy (2010), 54(8), 3197-204

Metallo-beta-lactamase (MBL)-producing bacteria are emerging worldwide and represent a formidable threat to the efficacy of relevant beta-lactams, including carbapenems, expanded-spectrum cephalosporins ... [more ▼]

Metallo-beta-lactamase (MBL)-producing bacteria are emerging worldwide and represent a formidable threat to the efficacy of relevant beta-lactams, including carbapenems, expanded-spectrum cephalosporins, and beta-lactamase inactivator/beta-lactam combinations. VIM-2 is currently the most widespread MBL and represents a primary target for MBL inhibitor research, the clinical need for which is expected to further increase in the future. Using a saturation mutagenesis approach, we probed the importance of four residues (Phe-61, Ala-64, Tyr-67, and Trp-87) located close to the VIM-2 active site and putatively relevant to the enzyme activity based on structural knowledge of the enzyme and on structure-activity relationships of the subclass B1 MBLs. The ampicillin MIC values shown by the various mutants were affected very differently depending on the randomized amino acid position. Position 64 appeared to be rather tolerant to substitution, and kinetic studies showed that the A64W mutation did not significantly affect substrate hydrolysis or binding, representing an important difference from IMP-type enzymes. Phe-61 and Tyr-67 could be replaced with several amino acids without the ampicillin MIC being significantly affected, but in contrast, Trp-87 was found to be critical for ampicillin resistance. Further kinetic and biochemical analyses of W87A and W87F variants showed that this residue is apparently important for the structure and proper folding of the enzyme but, surprisingly, not for its catalytic activity. These data support the critical role of residue 87 in the stability and folding of VIM-2 and might have strong implications for MBL inhibitor design, as this residue would represent an ideal target for interaction with small molecules. [less ▲]

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See detailComparative study of mature and zymogen mite cysteine protease stability and pH unfolding.
Chevigne, A.; Dumez, Marie-Eve ULg; Dumoulin, Mireille ULg et al

in Biochimica et Biophysica Acta (2010), 1800(9), 937-945

BACKGROUND: Papain-like proteases (CA1) are synthesized as inactive precursors carrying an N-terminal propeptide, which is further removed under acidic conditions to generate active enzymes. METHODS: To ... [more ▼]

BACKGROUND: Papain-like proteases (CA1) are synthesized as inactive precursors carrying an N-terminal propeptide, which is further removed under acidic conditions to generate active enzymes. METHODS: To have a better insight into the mechanism of activation of this protease family, we compared the pH unfolding of the zymogen and the mature form of the mite cysteine protease Der p 1. RESULTS: We showed that the presence of the propeptide does not significantly influence the pH-induced unfolding of the catalytic domain but does affect its fluorescence properties by modifying the exposure of the tryptophan 192 to the solvent. In addition, we demonstrated that the propeptide displays weaker pH stability than the protease domain confirming that the unfolding of the propeptide is the key event in the activation process of the zymogen. GENERAL SIGNIFICANCE: Finally, we show, using thermal denaturation and enzymatic activity measurements, that whatever the pH value, the propeptide does not stabilize the structure of the catalytic domain but very interestingly, prevents its autolysis. [less ▲]

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See detailThe Zinc Center Influences the Redox and Thermodynamic Properties of Escherichia coli Thioredoxin 2
El Hajjaji, Hayat; Dumoulin, Mireille ULg; Matagne, André ULg et al

in Journal of Molecular Biology (2009), 386(1), 60-71

Thioredoxins are small, ubiquitous redox enzymes that reduce protein disulfide bonds by using a pair of cysteine residues present in a strictly conserved WCGPC catalytic motif. The Escherichia coli ... [more ▼]

Thioredoxins are small, ubiquitous redox enzymes that reduce protein disulfide bonds by using a pair of cysteine residues present in a strictly conserved WCGPC catalytic motif. The Escherichia coli cytoplasm contains two thioredoxins, Trx1 and Trx2. Trx2 is special because it is induced under oxidative stress conditions and it has an additional N-terminal zinc-binding domain. We have determined the redox potential of Trx2, the pKa of the active site nucleophilic cysteine, as well as the stability of the oxidized and reduced form of the protein. Trx2 is more oxidizing than Trx1 (–221 mV versus –284 mV, respectively), which is in good agreement with the decreased value of the pKa of the nucleophilic cysteine (5.1 versus 7.1, respectively). The difference in stability between the oxidized and reduced forms of an oxidoreductase is the driving force to reduce substrate proteins. This difference is smaller for Trx2 (ΔΔG°H2O = 9 kJ/mol and ΔTm = 7. 4 °C) than for Trx1 (ΔΔG°H2O = 15 kJ/mol and ΔTm = 13 °C). Altogether, our data indicate that Trx2 is a significantly less reducing enzyme than Trx1, which suggests that Trx2 has a distinctive function. We disrupted the zinc center by mutating the four Zn2+-binding cysteines to serine. This mutant has a more reducing redox potential (–254 mV) and the pKa of its nucleophilic cysteine shifts from 5.1 to 7.1. The removal of Zn2+ also decreases the overall stability of the reduced and oxidized forms by 3.2 kJ/mol and 5.8 kJ/mol, respectively. In conclusion, our data show that the Zn2+-center of Trx2 fine-tunes the properties of this unique thioredoxin. [less ▲]

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See detailPositively Cooperative Binding of Zinc Ions to Bacillus cereus 569/H/9 beta-Lactamase II Suggests that the Binuclear Enzyme Is the Only Relevant Form for Catalysis
Jacquin, Olivier ULg; Balbeur, Dorothée ULg; Damblon, Christian ULg et al

in Journal of Molecular Biology (2009), 392(5), 1278-1291

Metallo-beta-lactamases catalyze the hydrolysis of most beta-lactam antibiotics and hence represent a major clinical concern. While enzymes belonging to subclass B1 have been shown to display maximum ... [more ▼]

Metallo-beta-lactamases catalyze the hydrolysis of most beta-lactam antibiotics and hence represent a major clinical concern. While enzymes belonging to subclass B1 have been shown to display maximum activity as dizinc species, the actual metal-to-protein stoichiometry and the affinity for zinc are not clear. We have further investigated the process of metal binding to the beta-lactamase H from Bacillus cereus 569/H/9 (known as BcII). Zinc binding was monitored using complementary biophysical techniques, including circular dichroism in the far-UV, enzymatic activity measurements, competition with a chromophoric chelator, mass spectrometry, and nuclear magnetic resonance. Most noticeably, mass spectrometry and nuclear magnetic resonance experiments, together with catalytic activity measurements, demonstrate that two zinc ions bind cooperatively to the enzyme active site (with K-1/K-2 >= 5) and, hence, that catalysis is associated with the dizinc enzyme species only. Furthermore, competitive experiments with the chromophoric chelator Mag-Fura-2 indicates K-2 < 80 nM. This contrasts with cadmium binding, which is clearly a noncooperative process with the mono form being the only species significantly populated in the presence of 1 molar equivalent of Cd(II). Interestingly, optical measurements reveal that although the apo and dizinc species exhibit undistinguishable tertiary structural organizations, the metal-depleted enzyme shows a significant decrease in its alpha-helical content, presumably associated with enhanced flexibility. (C) 2009 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved. [less ▲]

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See detailOptimization of the Production of the Amyloidogenic Variants of Human Lysozyme
Menzer, Linda ULg; Tocquin, Pierre ULg; Dony, Nicolas et al

Poster (2008, February 16)

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See detailTem-1 Beta-Lactamase Folds in a Nonhierarchical Manner with Transient Non-Native Interactions Involving the C-Terminal Region
Lejeune, Annabelle ULg; Pain, R. H.; Charlier, Paulette ULg et al

in Biochemistry (2008), 47(4), 1186-93

The conformational stability and kinetics of refolding and unfolding of the W290F mutant of TEM-1 beta-lactamase have been determined as a function of guanidinium chloride concentration. The activity and ... [more ▼]

The conformational stability and kinetics of refolding and unfolding of the W290F mutant of TEM-1 beta-lactamase have been determined as a function of guanidinium chloride concentration. The activity and spectroscopic properties of the mutant enzyme did not differ significantly from those of the wild type, indicating that the mutation has only a very limited effect on the structure of the protein. The stability of the folded protein is reduced, however, by 5-10 kJ mol-1 relative to that of the molten globule intermediate (H), but the values of the folding rate constants are unchanged, suggesting that Trp-290 becomes organized in its nativelike environment only after the rate-limiting step; i.e., the C-terminal region of the enzyme folds very late. In contrast to the significant increase in fluorescence intensity seen in the dead time (3-4 ms) of refolding of the wild-type protein, no corresponding burst phase was observed with the mutant enzyme, enabling the burst phase to be attributed specifically to the C-terminal Trp-290. This residue is suggested to be buried in a nonpolar environment from which it has to escape during subsequent folding steps. With both proteins, fast early collapse leads to a folding intermediate in which the C-terminal region of the polypeptide chain is trapped in a non-native structure, consistent with a nonhierarchical folding process. [less ▲]

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See detailEngineering a camelid antibody fragment that binds to the active site of human lysozyme and inhibits its conversion into amyloid fibrils
Chan, Pak Ho; Pardon, Els; Menzer, Linda ULg et al

in Biochemistry (2008), 47

single-domain fragment, cAb-HuL22, of a camelid heavy-chain antibody specific for the active site of human lysozyme has been generated, and its effects on the properties of the I56T and D67H amyloidogenic ... [more ▼]

single-domain fragment, cAb-HuL22, of a camelid heavy-chain antibody specific for the active site of human lysozyme has been generated, and its effects on the properties of the I56T and D67H amyloidogenic variants of human lysozyme, which are associated with a form of systemic amyloidosis, have been investigated by a wide range of biophysical techniques. Pulse-labeling hydrogen-deuterium exchange experiments monitored by mass spectrometry reveal that binding of the antibody fragment strongly inhibits the locally cooperative unfolding of the I56T and D67H variants and restores their global cooperativity to that characteristic of the wild-type protein. The antibody fragment was, however, not stable enough under the conditions used to explore its ability to perturb the aggregation behavior of the lysozyme amyloidogenic variants. We therefore engineered a more stable version of cAb-HuL22 by adding a disulfide bridge between the two beta-sheets in the hydrophobic core of the protein. The binding of this engineered antibody fragment to the amyloidogenic variants of lysozyme inhibited their aggregation into fibrils. These findings support the premise that the reduction in global cooperativity caused by the pathogenic mutations in the lysozyme gene is the determining feature underlying their amyloidogenicity. These observations indicate further that molecular targeting of enzyme active sites, and of protein binding sites in general, is an effective strategy for inhibiting or preventing the aberrant self-assembly process that is often a consequence of protein mutation and the origin of pathogenicity. Moreover, this work further demonstrates the unique properties of camelid single-domain antibody fragments as structural probes for studying the mechanism of aggregation and as potential inhibitors of fibril formation. [less ▲]

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See detailActivation mechanism of recombinant Der p 3 allergen zymogen - Contribution of cysteine protease Der p 1 and effect of propeptide glycosylation
Dumez, Marie-Eve ULg; Teller, Nathalie; Mercier, Frédéric ULg et al

in Journal of Biological Chemistry (2008), 283(45), 30606-30617

The trypsin-like protease Der p 3, a major allergen of the house dust mite Dermatophagoides pteronyssinus, is synthesized as a zymogen, termed proDer p 3. No recombinant source of Der p 3 has been ... [more ▼]

The trypsin-like protease Der p 3, a major allergen of the house dust mite Dermatophagoides pteronyssinus, is synthesized as a zymogen, termed proDer p 3. No recombinant source of Der p 3 has been described yet, and the zymogen maturation mechanism remains to be elucidated. The Der p 3 zymogen was produced in Pichia pastoris. We demonstrated that the recombinant zymogen is glycosylated at the level of its propeptide. We showed that the activation mechanism of proDer p 3 is intermolecular and is mediated by the house dust mite cysteine protease Der p 1. The primary structure of the proDer p 3 propeptide is associated with a unique zymogen activation mechanism, which is different from those described for the trypsin-like family and relies on the house dust mite papain-like protease Der p 1. This is the first report of a recombinant source of Der p 3, with the same enzymatic activity as the natural enzyme and trypsin. Glycosylation of the propeptide was found to decrease the rate of maturation. Finally, we showed that recombinant Der p 3 is inhibited by the free modified prosequence TP1R. [less ▲]

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See detailRelationship between propeptide pH unfolding and inhibitory ability during ProDer p 1 activation mechanism
Chevigné, Andy ULg; Barumandzadeh, Roya ULg; Groslambert, Sylvie et al

in Journal of Molecular Biology (2007), 374(1), 170-185

The major allergen Der p1 of the house dust mite Dermatophagoides pteronyssinus is a papain-like cysteine protease (CA1) produced as an inactive precursor and associated with allergic diseases. The ... [more ▼]

The major allergen Der p1 of the house dust mite Dermatophagoides pteronyssinus is a papain-like cysteine protease (CA1) produced as an inactive precursor and associated with allergic diseases. The propeptide of Der p I exhibits a specific fold that makes it unique in the CA1 propeptide family. In this study, we investigated the activation steps involved in the maturation of the recombinant protease Der p 1 expressed in Pichia pastoris and the interaction of the full-length and truncated soluble propepticles with their parent enzyme in terms of activity inhibition and BIAcore interaction analysis. According to our results, the activation of protease Der p 1 is a multistep mechanism that is characterized by at least two intermediates. The propeptide strongly inhibits unglycosylated and glycosylated recombinant Der p 1 (K-D = 7 nM) at neutral pH. This inhibition is pH dependent. It decreases from pH 7 to pH 4 and can be related to conformational changes of the propepticle characterized by an increase of its flexibility and formation of a molten globule state. Our results indicate that activation of the zymogen at pH 4 is a compromise between activity preservation and propeptide unfolding. (c) 2007 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved. [less ▲]

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See detailReduced global copperativity is a common feature underlying the amyloidogenicity of pathogenic lysozyme mutations
Dumoulin, Mireille ULg; Canet, Denis; Last, Alexander M. et al

in Journal of Molecular Biology (2005), 346(3), 773-788

One of the 20 or so human amyloid diseases is associated with the deposition in vital organs of full-length mutational variants of the antibacterial protein lysozyme. Here, we report experimental data ... [more ▼]

One of the 20 or so human amyloid diseases is associated with the deposition in vital organs of full-length mutational variants of the antibacterial protein lysozyme. Here, we report experimental data that permit a detailed comparison to be made of the behaviour of two of these amyloidogenic variants, I56T and D67H, under identical conditions. Hydrogen/deuterium exchange experiments monitored by NMR and mass spectrometry reveal that, despite their different locations and the different effects of the two mutations on the structure of the native state of lysozyme, both mutations cause a cooperative destabilisation of a remarkably similar segment of the structure, comprising in both cases the beta-domain and the adjacent C-helix. As a result, both variant proteins populate transiently a closely similar, partially unstructured intermediate in which the beta-domain and the adjacent C-helix are substantially and simultaneously unfolded, whereas the three remaining a-helices that form the core of the a-domain still have their native-like structure. We show, in addition, that the binding of a camel antibody fragment, cAb-HuL6, which was raised against wild-type lysozyme, restores to both variant proteins the stability and cooperativity characteristic of the wild-type protein; as a consequence, it inhibits the formation of amyloid fibrils by both variants. These results indicate that the reduction in global cooperativity, an associated ability to populate transiently a specific, partly unfolded intermediate state under physiologically relevant conditions, is a common feature underlying the behaviour of these two pathogenic mutations. The formation of intermolecular interactions between lysozyme molecules that are in this partially unfolded state is therefore likely to be the fundamental trigger of the aggregation process that ultimately leads to the formation and deposition in tissue of amyloid fibrils. (C) 2004 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved. [less ▲]

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