Crystallization and preliminary X-ray diffraction analysis on the homing endonuclease I-Dmo-I in complex with its target DNA.
ABSTRACT Homing endonucleases are highly specific DNA-cleaving enzymes that recognize long stretches of base pairs. The availability of these enzymes has opened novel perspectives for genome engineering in a wide range of fields, including gene therapy, by taking advantage of the homologous gene-targeting enhancement induced by a double-strand break. I-Dmo-I is a well characterized homing endonuclease from the archaeon Desulfurococcus mobilis. The enzyme was cloned and overexpressed in Escherichia coli. Crystallization experiments of I-Dmo-I in complex with its DNA target in the presence of Ca(2+) and Mg(2+) yielded crystals that were suitable for X-ray diffraction analysis. The crystals belonged to the monoclinic space group P2(1), with unit-cell parameters a = 106.75, b = 70.18, c = 106.85 A, alpha = gamma = 90, beta = 119.93 degrees . The self-rotation function and the Matthews coefficient suggested the presence of three protein-DNA complexes per asymmetric unit. The crystals diffracted to a resolution limit of 2.6 A using synchrotron radiation at the Swiss Light Source (SLS) and the European Synchrotron Radiation Facility (ESRF).
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ABSTRACT: PI-SceI is a member of a class of proteins (inteins) that excise themselves from a precursor protein and in the process ligate the flanking protein sequences (exteins). We report here the 2.1-A resolution crystal structure of a PI-SceI miniprecursor (VMA29) containing 10 N-terminal extein residues and 4 C-terminal extein residues. Mutations at the N- and C-terminal splicing junctions, blocking in vivo protein splicing, allowed the miniprecursor to be purified and crystallized. The structure reveals both the N- and C-terminal scissile peptide bonds to be in distorted trans conformations (tau approximately 100 degrees ). Modeling of the wild-type PI-SceI based on the VMA29 structure indicates a large conformational change (movement of >9 A) must occur to allow transesterification to be completed. A zinc atom was discovered at the C-terminal splicing junction. Residues Cys(455), His(453), and Glu(80) along with a water molecule (Wat(53)) chelate the zinc atom. The crystal structure of VMA29 has captured the intein in its pre-spliced state.Journal of Biological Chemistry 06/2000; 275(22):16408-13. · 4.77 Impact Factor