Matrix metalloproteases are a family of enzymes that play critical roles in the physiological and pathological degradation of the extracellular matrix. These enzymes may be important therapeutic targets for the treatment of various diseases where tissue degradation is part of the pathology, such as cancer and arthritis. Matrilysin is the smallest member of this family of enzymes, all of which require zinc for catalytic activity. The first X-ray crystal structures of human matrilysin are presented. Inhibitors of metalloproteases are often characterized by the chemical group that interacts with the active site zinc of the protein. The structures of matrilysin complexed with hydroxamate (maximum resolution 1.9 A), carboxylate (maximum resolution 2.4 A), and sulfodiimine (maximum resolution 2.3 A) inhibitors are presented here and provide detailed information about how each functional group interacts with the catalytic zinc. Only the zinc-coordination group is variable in this series of inhibitors. Examination of these inhibitor-matrilysin complexes emphasizes the dominant role the zinc-coordinating group plays in determining the relative potencies of the inhibitors. The structures of these matrilysin-inhibitor complexes also provide a basis for comparing the catalytic mechanism of MMPs and other metalloproteins.
"BB94 is selected for positive binding and phosphoramidon for negative control on MMP7. The 3D structures of the human MMP7 protease  (PDB code: 1MMR) and thermolysin  (EC#: 188.8.131.52) ((PDB code: 1THL) were retrieved from the Protein Data Bank. PRODRG program (http://davapc1.bioch.dundee.ac.uk/ programs/prodrg/) were used to generate the coordinate and topology files of SC44463 [11,12], BB94 [13-15] and Phosphoramidon [16,17]. "
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The Aim of this study is to study the minimum zinc dependent metalloprotease catalytic folding motif, helix B Met loop-helix C, with proteolytic catalytic activities in metzincin super family. The metzincin super family share a catalytic domain consisting of a twisted five-stranded β sheet and three long α helices (A, B and C). The catalytic zinc is at the bottom of the cleft and is ligated by three His residues in the consensus sequence motif, HEXXHXXGXXH, which is located in helix B and part of the adjacent Met turn region. An interesting question is - what is the minimum portion of the enzyme that still possesses catalytic and inhibitor recognition?"
We have expressed a 60-residue truncated form of matrilysin which retains only the helix B-Met turn-helix C region and deletes helix A and the five-stranded β sheet which form the upper portion of the active cleft. This is only 1/4 of the full catalytic domain. The E. coli derived 6 kDa MMP-7 ZBD fragments were purified and refolded. The proteolytic activities were analyzed by Mca-Pro-Leu-Gly-Leu-Dpa-Ala-Arg-NH2 peptide assay and CM-transferrin zymography analysis. SC44463, BB94 and Phosphoramidon were computationally docked into the 3 day structure of the human MMP7 ZBD and TAD and thermolysin using the docking program GOLD.
This minimal 6 kDa matrilysin has been refolded and shown to have proteolytic activity in the Mca-Pro-Leu-Gly-Leu-Dpa-Ala-Arg-NH2 peptide assay. Triton X-100 and heparin are important factors in the refolding environment for this mini-enzyme matrilysin. This minienzyme has the proteolytic activity towards peptide substrate, but the hexamer and octamer of the mini MMP-7 complex demonstrates the CM-transferrin proteolytic activities in zymographic analysis. Peptide digestion is inhibited by SC44463, specific MMP7 inhibitors, but not phosphorimadon. Interestingly, the mini MMP-7 can be processed by autolysis and producing ~ 6 ~ 7 kDa fragments. Thus, many of the functions of the enzyme are retained indicating that the helix B-Met loop-helix C is the minimal functional "domain" found to date for the matrixin family.
The helix B-Met loop-helix C folding conserved in metalloprotease metzincin super family is able to facilitate proteolytic catalysis for specific substrate and inhibitor recognition. The autolysis processing and producing 6 kDa mini MMP-7 is the smallest metalloprotease in living world.
"MMPs may function through one of three catalytic mechanisms. The first mechanism called the base-catalysis mechanism is carried out by the conserved glutamate residue and Zn 2+ (Browner et al., 1995). In the second mechanism, the catalytic action involves an interaction between a water molecule and Zn 2+ during the acid-base catalysis (Kester and Matthews, 1977). "
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs) are proteolytic enzymes that degrade various components of the extracellular matrix (ECM). MMPs could also regulate the activity of several non-ECM bioactive substrates and consequently affect different cellular functions. Members of the MMPs family include collagenases, gelatinases, stromelysins, matrilysins, membrane-type MMPs, and others. Pro-MMPs are cleaved into active MMPs, which in turn act on various substrates in the ECM and on the cell surface. MMPs play an important role in the regulation of numerous physiological processes including vascular remodeling and angiogenesis. MMPs may also be involved in vascular diseases such as hypertension, atherosclerosis, aortic aneurysm, and varicose veins. MMPs also play a role in the hemodynamic and vascular changes associated with pregnancy and preeclampsia. The role of MMPs is commonly assessed by measuring their gene expression, protein amount, and proteolytic activity using gel zymography. Because there are no specific activators of MMPs, MMP inhibitors are often used to investigate the role of MMPs in different physiologic processes and in the pathogenesis of specific diseases. MMP inhibitors include endogenous tissue inhibitors (TIMPs) and pharmacological inhibitors such as zinc chelators, doxycycline, and marimastat. MMP inhibitors have been evaluated as diagnostic and therapeutic tools in cancer, autoimmune disease, and cardiovascular disease. Although several MMP inhibitors have been synthesized and tested both experimentally and clinically, only one MMP inhibitor, i.e., doxycycline, is currently approved by the Food and Drug Administration. This is mainly due to the undesirable side effects of MMP inhibitors especially on the musculoskeletal system. While most experimental and clinical trials of MMP inhibitors have not demonstrated significant benefits, some trials still showed promising results. With the advent of new genetic and pharmacological tools, disease-specific MMP inhibitors with fewer undesirable effects are being developed and could be useful in the management of vascular disease.
"This superfamily of proteases is defined by the presence of a Zn 2? ion at the catalytic center, which is coordinated by three histidine residues in the zinc-binding consensus sequence HExxHxxGxxH that is present in all proteolytically active metzincins, and a characteristic, strictly conserved methionine-containing tight 1,4 beta turn forming a hydrophobic cleft for the catalytic zinc ion (Bode et al. 1993). Catalysis of protein substrates is (most probably) carried out via a general base mechanism involving activation of a zinc-bound water molecule by the carboxylate group of the conserved glutamate residue in the catalytic pocket followed by attack of water on the polarized carbonyl group in the substrate's scissile bond (Browner et al. 1995). "
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Matrix metalloproteases (MMPs) comprise a family of enzymes that cleave protein substrates based on a conserved mechanism involving activation of an active site-bound water molecule by a Zn(2+) ion. Although the catalytic domain of MMPs is structurally highly similar, there are many differences with respect to substrate specificity, cellular and tissue localization, membrane binding and regulation that make this a very versatile family of enzymes with a multitude of physiological functions, many of which are still not fully understood. Essentially, all members of the MMP family have been linked to disease development, notably to cancer metastasis, chronic inflammation and the ensuing tissue damage as well as to neurological disorders. This has stimulated a flurry of studies into MMP inhibitors as therapeutic agents, as well as into measuring MMP levels as diagnostic or prognostic markers. As with most protein families, deciphering the function(s) of MMPs is difficult, as they can modify many proteins. Which of these reactions are physiologically or pathophysiologically relevant is often not clear, although studies on knockout animals, human genetic and epigenetic, as well as biochemical studies using natural or synthetic inhibitors have provided insight to a great extent. In this review, we will give an overview of 23 members of the human MMP family and describe functions, linkages to disease and structural and mechanistic features. MMPs can be grouped into soluble (including matrilysins) and membrane-anchored species. We adhere to the 'MMP nomenclature' and provide the reader with reference to the many, often diverse, names for this enzyme family in the introduction.
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