Distinguishing chromophore structures of photocycle intermediates of the photoreceptor PYP by transient fluorescence and energy transfer
ABSTRACT The cinnamoyl chromophore is the light-activated switch of the photoreceptor photoactive yellow protein (PYP) and isomerizes during the functional cycle. The fluorescence of W119, the only tryptophan of PYP, is quenched by energy transfer to the chromophore. This depends on the chromophore's transition dipole moment orientation and spectrum, both of which change during the photocycle. The transient fluorescence of W119 thus serves as a sensitive kinetic monitor of the chromophore's structure and orientation and was used for the first time to investigate the photocycle kinetics. From these data and measurements of the ps-fluorescence decay with background illumination (470 nm) we determined the fluorescence lifetimes of W119 in the I(1) and I (1') intermediates. Two coexisting distinct chromophore structures were proposed for the I(1) photointermediate from time-resolved X-ray diffraction ( Ihee, H., et al. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U.S.A., 2005, 102, 7145 ): one with two hydrogen bonds to E46 and Y42, and a second with only one H-bond to Y42 and a different orientation. Only for the first of these is the calculated fluorescence lifetime of 0.22 ns in good agreement with the observed one of 0.26 ns. The second structure has a predicted lifetime of 0.71 ns. Thus, we conclude that in solution only the first I(1) structure occurs. The high resolution structure of the I(1') intermediate, the decay product of I(1) at alkaline pH, is still unknown. We predict from the observed lifetime of 1.3 ns that the chromophore structure of I(1') is quite similar to that of the I(2) intermediate, and I(1') should thus be considered as the alkaline (deprotonated) form of I(2).
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ABSTRACT: The transient changes of the tryptophan fluorescence of bovine rhodopsin in ROS membranes were followed in time from 1 micros to 10 s after flash excitation of the photoreceptor. Up to about 100 micros the fluorescence did not change, suggesting that the tryptophan lifetimes in rhodopsin and the M(I) intermediate are similar. The fluorescence then decreases on the millisecond time scale with kinetics that match the rise of the M(II) state as measured on the same sample by the transient absorption increase at 360 nm. Both the sign and kinetics of the fluorescence change strongly suggest that it is due to an increase in energy transfer to the retinylidene chromophore caused by the increased spectral overlap in M(II). Calculation of the Forster radius of each tryptophan from the high-resolution crystal structure suggests that W265 and W126 are already completely quenched in the dark, whereas W161, W175, and W35 are located at distances from the retinal chromophore that are comparable to their Forster radii. The fluorescence from these residues is thus sensitive to an increase in energy transfer in M(II). Similar results were obtained at other temperatures and with monomeric rhodopsin in dodecyl maltoside micelles. A large light-induced transient fluorescence increase was observed with ROS membranes that were selectively labeled with Alexa594 at cysteine 316 in helix 8. Using transient absorption spectroscopy the kinetics of this structural change at the cytoplasmic surface was compared to the formation of the signaling state M(II) (360 nm) and to the kinetics of proton uptake as measured with the pH indicator dye bromocresol purple (605 nm). The fluorescence kinetics lags behind the deprotonation of the Schiff base. The proton uptake is even further delayed. These observations show that in ROS membranes (at pH 6) the sequence of events is Schiff base deprotonation, structural change, and proton uptake. From the temperature dependence of the kinetics we conclude that the Schiff base deprotonation and the transient fluorescence have comparable activation energies, whereas that of proton uptake is much smaller.Biochemistry 11/2008; 47(44):11518-27. DOI:10.1021/bi801397e · 3.19 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: The photoreceptor PYP responds to light activation with global conformational changes. These changes are mainly located in the N-terminal cap of the protein, which is approximately 20 A away from the chromophore binding pocket and separated from it by the central beta-sheet. The question of the propagation of the structural change across the central beta-sheet is of general interest for the superfamily of PAS domain proteins, for which PYP is the structural prototype. Here we measured the kinetics of the structural changes in the N-terminal cap by transient absorption spectroscopy on the ns to second timescale. For this purpose the cysteine mutants A5C and N13C were prepared and labeled with thiol reactive 5-iodoacetamidofluorescein (IAF). A5 is located close to the N-terminus, while N13 is part of helix alpha1 near the functionally important salt bridge E12-K110 between the N-terminal cap and the central anti-parallel beta-sheet. The absorption spectrum of the dye is sensitive to its environment, and serves as a sensor for conformational changes near the labeling site. In both labeled mutants light activation results in a transient red-shift of the fluorescein absorption spectrum. To correlate the conformational changes with the photocycle intermediates of the protein, we compared the kinetics of the transient absorption signal of the dye with that of the p-hydroxycinnamoyl chromophore. While the structural change near A5 is synchronized with the rise of the I(2) intermediate, which is formed in approximately 200 mus, the change near N13 is delayed and rises with the next intermediate I(2)', which forms in approximately 2 ms. This indicates that different parts of the N-terminal cap respond to light activation with different kinetics. For the signaling pathway of photoactive yellow protein we propose a model in which the structural signal propagates from the chromophore binding pocket across the central beta-sheet via the N-terminal region to helix alpha1, resulting in a large change in the protein conformation.Physical Chemistry Chemical Physics 08/2009; 11(26):5437-44. DOI:10.1039/b821345c · 4.20 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: In the Y42F mutant of photoactive yellow protein (PYP) the photoreceptor is in an equilibrium between two dark states, the yellow and intermediate spectral forms, absorbing at 457 and 390 nm, respectively. The nature of this equilibrium and the light-induced protonation and structural changes in the two spectral forms were characterized by transient absorption, fluorescence, FTIR, and pH indicator dye experiments. In the yellow form, the oxygen of the deprotonated p-hydroxycinnamoyl chromophore is linked by a strong low-barrier hydrogen bond to the protonated carboxyl group of Glu46 and by a weaker one to Thr50. Using FTIR, we find that the band due to the carbonyl of the protonated side chain of Glu46 is shifted from 1736 cm(-1) in wild type to 1724 cm(-1) in the yellow form of Y42F, implying a stronger hydrogen bond with the deprotonated chromophore in Y42F. The FTIR data suggest moreover that in the intermediate spectral form the chromophore is protonated and Glu46 deprotonated. Flash spectroscopy (50 ns-10 s) shows that the photocycles of the two forms are essentially the same except for a transition around 5 mus that has opposite signs in the two forms and is due to the chemical relaxation between the two dark states. The two cycles are coupled, likely by excited state proton transfer. The Y42F cycle differs from wild type by the occurrence of a new intermediate with protonated chromophore between the usual I(1) and I(2) intermediates which we call I(1)H (370 nm). Transient fluorescence measurements indicate that in I(1)H the chromophore retains the orientation it had in I(1). Transient proton uptake occurs with a time constant of 230 mus and a stoichiometry of 1. No proton uptake was associated however with the formation of the I(1)H intermediate and the relaxation of the yellow/intermediate equilibrium. These protonation changes of the chromophore thus occur intramolecularly. The chromophore-Glu46 hydrogen bond in Y42F is shorter than in wild type, since the adjacent chromophore-Y42 hydrogen bond is replaced by a longer one with Thr50. This facilitates proton transfer from Glu46 to the chromophore in the dark by lowering the barrier, leading to the protonation equilibrium and causing the rapid light-induced proton transfer which couples the cycles.Biochemistry 09/2009; 48(42):9980-93. DOI:10.1021/bi9012897 · 3.19 Impact Factor