Cellular redox signaling is important in diverse physiological and pathological processes. The activity of rat phenol sulfotransferase (rSULT1A1), which is important for the metabolism of hormone and drug, is subjected to redox regulation. Two cysteines, Cys232 and Cys66, nanometer away from each other and from the enzyme active site were proposed to form disulfide bond to regulate the activity of rSULT1A1. A nano switch, composed of a flexible loop from amino acid residues 59-70, explained how this long distance interaction between two cysteines can be achieved. The enzyme properties were investigated through site-directed muatagnesis, circular dichroism, enzyme kinetics and homologous modeling of the rSULT1A1 structures. We proposed that the formation of disulfide bond between Cys232 and Cys66 induced conformational changes of sulfotransferase, then in turn affected its nucleotide binding and enzyme activity. This discovery was extended to understand the possible redox regulation of other sulfotransferases from different organisms. The redox switch can be created in other redox-insensitive sulfotransferases, such as human phenol sulfotransferase (hSULT1A1) and human alcohol sulfotransferase (hSULT2A1), to produce mutant enzymes with redox regulation capacity. This study strongly suggested that redox regulation of drug and hormone metabolism can be significantly varied even though the sequence and structure of SULT1A1 of human and rat have a high degree of homology.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The human cytosolic sulfotransfases (hSULTs) comprise a family of 12 phase II enzymes involved in the metabolism of drugs and hormones, the bioactivation of carcinogens, and the detoxification of xenobiotics. Knowledge of the structural and mechanistic basis of substrate specificity and activity is crucial for understanding steroid and hormone metabolism, drug sensitivity, pharmacogenomics, and response to environmental toxins. We have determined the crystal structures of five hSULTs for which structural information was lacking, and screened nine of the 12 hSULTs for binding and activity toward a panel of potential substrates and inhibitors, revealing unique "chemical fingerprints" for each protein. The family-wide analysis of the screening and structural data provides a comprehensive, high-level view of the determinants of substrate binding, the mechanisms of inhibition by substrates and environmental toxins, and the functions of the orphan family members SULT1C3 and SULT4A1. Evidence is provided for structural "priming" of the enzyme active site by cofactor binding, which influences the spectrum of small molecules that can bind to each enzyme. The data help explain substrate promiscuity in this family and, at the same time, reveal new similarities between hSULT family members that were previously unrecognized by sequence or structure comparison alone.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The sulfonation (also known as sulfurylation) of biomolecules has long been known to take place in a variety of organisms, from prokaryotes to multicellular species, and new biological functions continue to be uncovered in connection with this important transformation. Early studies of sulfotransferases (STs), the enzymes that catalyze sulfonation, focused primarily on the cytosolic STs, which are involved in detoxification, hormone regulation, and drug metabolism. Although known to exist, the membrane-associated STs were not studied as extensively until more recently. Involved in the sulfonation of complex carbohydrates and proteins, they have emerged as central players in a number of molecular-recognition events and biochemical signaling pathways. STs have also been implicated in many pathophysiological processes. As a result, much interest in the complex roles of STs and in their targeting for therapeutic intervention has been generated. Progress in the elucidation of the structures and mechanisms of sulfotransferases, as well as their biological activity, inhibition, and synthetic utility, are discussed in this Review.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: A sensitive fluorometric assay was developed for alcohol sulfotransferase (AST). This was the first continuous fluorometric assay reported for AST. It used 3'-phosphoadenosine 5'-phosphosulfate regenerated from 3-phosphoadenosine 5'-phosphate by a recombinant phenol sulfotransferase (PST) using 4-methylumbelliferyl sulfate as the sulfuryl group donor. The recombinant PST did not use the alcohol substrate under the designed condition, and the sensitivity for AST activity was found to be comparable to that of radioactive assay as reported in the literature. The change of fluorescence intensity of 4-methylumbelliferone corresponded directly to the amount of active AST and was sensitive enough to measure nanogram or picomole amounts of the enzyme activity. This fluorometric assay was used to determine the activities of AST as purified form and in crude extracts of pig liver, rat liver, and Escherichia coli. Some properties of human dehydroepiandrosterone sulfotransferase were determined by this method and were found to be comparable to published data. Under similar assay conditions, the contaminated activities of arylsulfatase in crude extracts were also determined. This method not only is useful for the routine and detailed kinetic study of this important class of enzymes but also has the potential for the development of a high-throughput procedure using microplate reader.
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