Michael K Johnson

University of Georgia, Атина, Georgia, United States

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Publications (118)464.87 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: BolA proteins are defined as stress-responsive transcriptional regulators but they also participate to iron metabolism. Although they can form [2Fe-2S]-containing complexes with monothiol glutaredoxins (Grx), structural details are lacking. Three Arabidopsis thaliana BolA structures were solved. They differ primarily by the size of a loop referred to as the variable [H/C] loop which contains an important cysteine (BolA_C group) or histidine (BolA_H group) residue. From 3D modeling and spectroscopic analyses of A. thaliana GrxS14-BolA1 holo-heterodimer (BolA_H), we provide evidence for the coordination of a Rieske-type [2Fe-2S] cluster. For BolA_C members, the cysteine could replace the histidine as a ligand. NMR interaction experiments using apo-proteins indicate that a completely different heterodimer was formed, involving the nucleic acid binding site of BolA and the C-terminal tail of Grx. The possible biological importance of these complexes is discussed considering the physiological functions previously assigned to BolA and to Grx-BolA or Grx-Grx complexes.
    The Journal of biological chemistry. 07/2014;
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    ABSTRACT: For many pathogenic microorganisms, iron acquisition represents a significant stress during the colonization of a mammalian host. Heme is the single most abundant source of soluble iron in this environment. While the importance of iron assimilation for nearly all organisms is clear, the mechanisms by which heme is acquired and utilized by many bacterial pathogens, even those most commonly found at sites of infection, remain poorly understood.
    Biochimica et biophysica acta. 06/2014;
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    ABSTRACT: The biosynthesis of the organometallic H cluster of [Fe-Fe] hydrogenase requires three accessory proteins, two of which (HydE and HydG) belong to the radical S-adenosylmethionine enzyme superfamily. The third, HydF, is an Fe-S protein with GTPase activity. The [4Fe-4S] cluster of HydF is bound to the polypeptide chain through only the three, conserved, cysteine residues present in the binding sequence motif CysXHisX(46-53)HisCysXXCys. However, the involvement of the two highly conserved histidines as a fourth ligand for the cluster coordination is controversial. In this study, we set out to characterize further the [4Fe-4S] cluster of HydF using Mössbauer, EPR, hyperfine sublevel correlation (HYSCORE), and resonance Raman spectroscopy in order to investigate the influence of nitrogen ligands on the spectroscopic properties of [4Fe-4S](2+/+) clusters. Our results show that Mössbauer, resonance Raman, and EPR spectroscopy are not able to readily discriminate between the imidazole-coordinated [4Fe-4S] cluster and the non-imidazole-bound [4Fe-4S] cluster with an exchangeable fourth ligand that is present in wild-type HydF. HYSCORE spectroscopy, on the other hand, detects the presence of an imidazole/histidine ligand on the cluster on the basis of the appearance of a specific spectral pattern in the strongly coupled region, with a coupling constant of approximately 6 MHz. We also discovered that a His-tagged version of HydF, with a hexahistidine tag at the N-terminus, has a [4Fe-4S] cluster coordinated by one histidine from the tag. This observation strongly indicates that care has to be taken in the analysis of data obtained on tagged forms of metalloproteins.
    European Journal of Biochemistry 11/2013; · 3.42 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Nfu-type proteins are essential in the biogenesis of iron-sulfur (Fe-S) clusters in numerous organisms. A number of phenotypes including low levels of Fe-S cluster incorporation are associated with the deletion of the gene encoding a chloroplast-specific Nfu-type protein, Nfu2 from Arabidopsis thaliana (AtNfu2). Here, we report that recombinant AtNfu2 is able to assemble both [2Fe-2S] and [4Fe-4S] clusters. Analytical data and gel filtration studies support cluster/protein stoichiometries of one [2Fe-2S] cluster/homotetramer and one [4Fe-4S] cluster/homodimer. The combination of UV-visible absorption and circular dichroism and resonance Raman and Mössbauer spectroscopies has been employed to investigate the nature, properties, and transfer of the clusters assembled on Nfu2. The results are consistent with subunit-bridging [2Fe-2S](2+) and [4Fe-4S](2+) clusters coordinated by the cysteines in the conserved CXXC motif. The results also provided insight into the specificity of Nfu2 for the maturation of chloroplastic Fe-S proteins via intact, rapid, and quantitative cluster transfer. [2Fe-2S] cluster-bound Nfu2 is shown to be an effective [2Fe-2S](2+) cluster donor for glutaredoxin S16 but not glutaredoxin S14. Moreover, [4Fe-4S] cluster-bound Nfu2 is shown to be a very rapid and efficient [4Fe-4S](2+) cluster donor for adenosine 5'-phosphosulfate reductase (APR1), and yeast two-hybrid studies indicate that APR1 forms a complex with Nfu2 but not with Nfu1 and Nfu3, the two other chloroplastic Nfu proteins. This cluster transfer is likely to be physiologically relevant and is particularly significant for plant metabolism as APR1 catalyzes the second step in reductive sulfur assimilation, which ultimately results in the biosynthesis of cysteine, methionine, glutathione, and Fe-S clusters.
    Biochemistry 09/2013; · 3.38 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Monothiol glutaredoxins (Grxs) are proposed to function in Fe-S cluster storage and delivery, based on their ability to exist as apo monomeric forms and dimeric forms containing a subunit-bridging [Fe(2)S(2)](2+) cluster, and to accept [Fe(2)S(2)](2+) clusters from primary scaffold proteins. In addition yeast cytosolic monothiol Grxs interact with Fra2 (Fe repressor of activation-2), to form a heterodimeric complex with a bound [Fe(2)S(2)](2+) cluster that plays a key role in iron sensing and regulation of iron homeostasis. In this work, we report on in vitro UV-visible CD studies of cluster transfer between homodimeric monothiol Grxs and members of the ubiquitous A-type class of Fe-S cluster carrier proteins ((Nif)IscA and SufA). The results reveal rapid, unidirectional, intact and quantitative cluster transfer from the [Fe(2)S(2)](2+) cluster-bound forms of A. thaliana GrxS14, S. cerevisiae Grx3, and A. vinelandii Grx-nif homodimers to A. vinelandii(Nif)IscA and from A. thaliana GrxS14 to A. thaliana SufA1. Coupled with in vivo evidence for interaction between monothiol Grxs and A-type Fe-S cluster carrier proteins, the results indicate that these two classes of proteins work together in cellular Fe-S cluster trafficking. However, cluster transfer is reversed in the presence of Fra2, since the [Fe(2)S(2)](2+) cluster-bound heterodimeric Grx3-Fra2 complex can be formed by intact [Fe(2)S(2)](2+) cluster transfer from (Nif)IscA. The significance of these results for Fe-S cluster biogenesis or repair and the cellular regulation of the Fe-S cluster status are discussed.
    Dalton Transactions 01/2013; · 3.81 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The ability of Azotobacter vinelandiiNifIscA to bind Fe has been investigated to assess the role of Fe-bound forms in NIF-specific Fe–S cluster biogenesis. NifIscA is shown to bind one Fe(III) or one Fe(II) per homodimer and the spectroscopic and redox properties of both the Fe(III)- and Fe(II)-bound forms have been characterized using the UV–visible absorption, circular dichroism, and variable-temperature magnetic circular dichroism, electron paramagnetic resonance, Mössbauer and resonance Raman spectroscopies. The results reveal a rhombic intermediate-spin (S = 3/2) Fe(III) center (E/D = 0.33, D = 3.5 ± 1.5 cm–1) that is most likely 5-coordinate with two or three cysteinate ligands and a rhombic high spin (S = 2) Fe(II) center (E/D = 0.28, D = 7.6 cm–1) with properties similar to reduced rubredoxins or rubredoxin variants with three cysteinate and one or two oxygenic ligands. Iron-bound NifIscA undergoes reversible redox cycling between the Fe(III)/Fe(II) forms with a midpoint potential of +36 ± 15 mV at pH 7.8 (versus NHE). l-Cysteine is effective in mediating release of free Fe(II) from both the Fe(II)- and Fe(III)-bound forms of NifIscA. Fe(III)-bound NifIscA was also shown to be a competent iron source for in vitro NifS-mediated [2Fe-2S] cluster assembly on the N-terminal domain of NifU, but the reaction occurs via cysteine-mediated release of free Fe(II) rather than direct iron transfer. The proposed roles of A-type proteins in storing Fe under aerobic growth conditions and serving as iron donors for cluster assembly on U-type scaffold proteins or maturation of biological [4Fe-4S] centers are discussed in light of these results.
    Biochemistry 10/2012; 51(41):8056–8070. · 3.38 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The mechanism of [4Fe-4S] cluster assembly on A-type Fe–S cluster assembly proteins, in general, and the specific role of NifIscA in the maturation of nitrogen fixation proteins are currently unknown. To address these questions, in vitro spectroscopic studies (UV–visible absorption/CD, resonance Raman and Mössbauer) have been used to investigate the mechanism of [4Fe-4S] cluster assembly on Azotobacter vinelandiiNifIscA, and the ability of NifIscA to accept clusters from NifU and to donate clusters to the apo form of the nitrogenase Fe-protein. The results show that NifIscA can rapidly and reversibly cycle between forms containing one [2Fe-2S]2+ and one [4Fe-4S]2+ cluster per homodimer via DTT-induced two-electron reductive coupling of two [2Fe-2S]2+ clusters and O2-induced [4Fe-4S]2+ oxidative cleavage. This unique type of cluster interconversion in response to cellular redox status and oxygen levels is likely to be important for the specific role of A-type proteins in the maturation of [4Fe-4S] cluster-containing proteins under aerobic growth or oxidative stress conditions. Only the [4Fe-4S]2+-NifIscA was competent for rapid activation of apo-nitrogenase Fe protein under anaerobic conditions. Apo-NifIscA was shown to accept clusters from [4Fe-4S] cluster-bound NifU via rapid intact cluster transfer, indicating a potential role as a cluster carrier for delivery of clusters assembled on NifU. Overall the results support the proposal that A-type proteins can function as carrier proteins for clusters assembled on U-type proteins and suggest that they are likely to supply [2Fe-2S] clusters rather than [4Fe-4S] for the maturation of [4Fe-4S] cluster-containing proteins under aerobic or oxidative stress growth conditions.
    Biochemistry 10/2012; 51(41):8071–8084. · 3.38 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Fumarate and nitrate reduction (FNR) regulatory proteins are O(2)-sensing bacterial transcription factors that control the switch between aerobic and anaerobic metabolism. Under anaerobic conditions [4Fe-4S](2+)-FNR exists as a DNA-binding homodimer. In response to elevated oxygen levels, the [4Fe-4S](2+) cluster undergoes a rapid conversion to a [2Fe-2S](2+) cluster, resulting in a dimer-to-monomer transition and loss of site-specific DNA binding. In this work, resonance Raman and UV-visible absorption/CD spectroscopies and MS were used to characterize the interconversion between [4Fe-4S](2+) and [2Fe-2S](2+) clusters in Escherichia coli FNR. Selective (34)S labeling of the bridging sulfides in the [4Fe-4S](2+) cluster-bound form of FNR facilitated identification of resonantly enhanced Cys(32)S-(34)S stretching modes in the resonance Raman spectrum of the O(2)-exposed [2Fe-2S](2+) cluster-bound form of FNR. This result indicates O(2)-induced oxidation and retention of bridging sulfides in the form of [2Fe-2S](2+) cluster-bound cysteine persulfides. MS also demonstrates that multiple cysteine persulfides are formed on O(2) exposure of [4Fe-4S](2+)-FNR. The [4Fe-4S](2+) cluster in FNR can also be regenerated from the cysteine persulfide-coordinated [2Fe-2S](2+) cluster by anaerobic incubation with DTT and Fe(2+) ion in the absence of exogenous sulfide. Resonance Raman data indicate that this type of cluster conversion involving sulfide oxidation is not unique to FNR, because it also occurs in O(2)-exposed forms of O(2)-sensitive [4Fe-4S] clusters in radical S-adenosylmethionine enzymes. The results provide fresh insight into the molecular mechanism of O(2) sensing by FNR and iron-sulfur cluster conversion reactions in general, and suggest unique mechanisms for the assembly or repair of biological [4Fe-4S] clusters.
    Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 09/2012; 109(39):15734-9. · 9.81 Impact Factor
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    Priyanka Shakamuri, Bo Zhang, Michael K Johnson
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    ABSTRACT: In the bacterial ISC system for iron-sulfur cluster assembly, IscU acts as a primary scaffold protein, and the molecular co-chaperones HscA and HscB specifically interact with IscU to facilitate ATP-driven cluster transfer. In this work, cluster transfer from Azotobacter vinelandii [Fe(2)S(2)](2+) cluster-bound IscU to apo-Grx5, a general purpose monothiol glutaredoxin in A. vinelandii, was monitored by circular dichroism spectroscopy, in the absence and in the presence of HscA/HscB/Mg-ATP. The results indicate a 700-fold enhancement in the rate of [Fe(2)S(2)](2+) cluster transfer in the presence of the co-chaperones and Mg-ATP, yielding a second-order rate constant of 20 000 M(-1) min(-1) at 23 °C. Thus, HscA and HscB are required for efficient ATP-dependent [Fe(2)S(2)](2+) cluster transfer from IscU to Grx5. The results support a role for monothiol Grx's in storing and transporting [Fe(2)S(2)](2+) clusters assembled on IscU and illustrate the limitations of interpreting in vitro cluster transfer studies involving [Fe(2)S(2)]-IscU in the absence of the dedicated HscA/HscB co-chaperone system.
    Journal of the American Chemical Society 09/2012; 134(37):15213-6. · 10.68 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Human glutaredoxin 3 (Glrx3) is an essential [2Fe-2S]-binding protein with ill-defined roles in immune cell response, embryogenesis, cancer cell growth, and regulation of cardiac hypertrophy. Similar to other members of the CGFS monothiol glutaredoxin (Grx) family, human Glrx3 forms homodimers bridged by two [2Fe-2S] clusters that are ligated by the conserved CGFS motifs and glutathione (GSH). We recently demonstrated that the yeast homologues of human Glrx3 and the yeast BolA-like protein Fra2 form [2Fe-2S]-bridged heterodimers that play a key role in signaling intracellular iron availability. Herein, we provide biophysical and biochemical evidence that the two tandem Grx-like domains in human Glrx3 form similar [2Fe-2S]-bridged complexes with human BolA2. UV-visible absorption and circular dichroism, resonance Raman, and electron paramagnetic resonance spectroscopic analyses of recombinant [2Fe-2S] Glrx3 homodimers and [2Fe-2S] Glrx3-BolA2 complexes indicate that the Fe-S coordination environments in these complexes are virtually identical to those of the analogous complexes in yeast. Furthermore, we demonstrate that apo BolA2 binds to each Grx domain in the [2Fe-2S] Glrx3 homodimer forming a [2Fe-2S] BolA2-Glrx3 heterotrimer. Taken together, these results suggest that the unusual [2Fe-2S]-bridging Grx-BolA interaction is conserved in higher eukaryotes and may play a role in signaling cellular iron status in humans.
    Biochemistry 02/2012; 51(8):1687-96. · 3.38 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Unlike thioredoxins, glutaredoxins are involved in iron-sulfur cluster assembly and in reduction of specific disulfides (i.e. protein-glutathione adducts), and thus they are also important redox regulators of chloroplast metabolism. Using GFP fusion, AtGrxC5 isoform, present exclusively in Brassicaceae, was shown to be localized in chloroplasts. A comparison of the biochemical, structural, and spectroscopic properties of Arabidopsis GrxC5 (WCSYC active site) with poplar GrxS12 (WCSYS active site), a chloroplastic paralog, indicated that, contrary to the solely apomonomeric GrxS12 isoform, AtGrxC5 exists as two forms when expressed in Escherichia coli. The monomeric apoprotein possesses deglutathionylation activity mediating the recycling of plastidial methionine sulfoxide reductase B1 and peroxiredoxin IIE, whereas the dimeric holoprotein incorporates a [2Fe-2S] cluster. Site-directed mutagenesis experiments and resolution of the x-ray crystal structure of AtGrxC5 in its holoform revealed that, although not involved in its ligation, the presence of the second active site cysteine (Cys(32)) is required for cluster formation. In addition, thiol titrations, fluorescence measurements, and mass spectrometry analyses showed that, despite the presence of a dithiol active site, AtGrxC5 does not form any inter- or intramolecular disulfide bond and that its activity exclusively relies on a monothiol mechanism.
    Journal of Biological Chemistry 06/2011; 286(31):27515-27. · 4.65 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: In vivo biogenesis of Fe-S cluster cofactors requires complex biosynthetic machinery to limit release of iron and sulfide, to protect the Fe-S cluster from oxidation, and to target the Fe-S cluster to the correct apoenzyme. The SufABCDSE pathway for Fe-S cluster assembly in Escherichia coli accomplishes these tasks under iron starvation and oxidative stress conditions that disrupt Fe-S cluster metabolism. Although SufB, SufC, and SufD are all required for in vivo Suf function, their exact roles are unclear. Here we show that SufB, SufC, and SufD, coexpressed with the SufS-SufE sulfur transfer pair, purify as two distinct complexes (SufBC(2)D and SufB(2)C(2)) that contain Fe-S clusters and FADH(2). These studies also show that SufC and SufD are required for in vivo Fe-S cluster formation on SufB. Furthermore, while SufD is dispensable for in vivo sulfur transfer, it is absolutely required for in vivo iron acquisition. Finally, we demonstrate for the first time that the ATPase activity of SufC is necessary for in vivo iron acquisition during Fe-S cluster assembly.
    Biochemistry 11/2010; 49(43):9402-12. · 3.38 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The BolA homologue Fra2 and the cytosolic monothiol glutaredoxins Grx3 and Grx4 together play a key role in regulating iron homeostasis in Saccharomyces cerevisiae. Genetic studies indicate that Grx3/4 and Fra2 regulate activity of the iron-responsive transcription factors Aft1 and Aft2 in response to mitochondrial Fe-S cluster biosynthesis. We have previously shown that Fra2 and Grx3/4 form a [2Fe-2S](2+)-bridged heterodimeric complex with iron ligands provided by the active site cysteine of Grx3/4, glutathione, and a histidine residue. To further characterize this unusual Fe-S-binding complex, site-directed mutagenesis was used to identify specific residues in Fra2 that influence Fe-S cluster binding and regulation of Aft1 activity in vivo. Here, we present spectroscopic evidence that His-103 in Fra2 is an Fe-S cluster ligand in the Fra2-Grx3 complex. Replacement of this residue does not abolish Fe-S cluster binding, but it does lead to a change in cluster coordination and destabilization of the [2Fe-2S] cluster. In vivo genetic studies further confirm that Fra2 His-103 is critical for control of Aft1 activity in response to the cellular iron status. Using CD spectroscopy, we find that ∼1 mol eq of apo-Fra2 binds tightly to the [2Fe-2S] Grx3 homodimer to form the [2Fe-2S] Fra2-Grx3 heterodimer, suggesting a mechanism for formation of the [2Fe-2S] Fra2-Grx3 heterodimer in vivo. Taken together, these results demonstrate that the histidine coordination and stability of the [2Fe-2S] cluster in the Fra2-Grx3 complex are essential for iron regulation in yeast.
    Journal of Biological Chemistry 10/2010; 286(1):867-76. · 4.65 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Here we identify a previously undescribed protein, HemQ, that is required for heme synthesis in Gram-positive bacteria. We have characterized HemQ from Bacillus subtilis and a number of Actinobacteria. HemQ is a multimeric heme-binding protein. Spectroscopic studies indicate that this heme is high spin ferric iron and is ligated by a conserved histidine with the sixth coordination site available for binding a small molecule. The presence of HemQ along with the terminal two pathway enzymes, protoporphyrinogen oxidase (HemY) and ferrochelatase, is required to synthesize heme in vivo and in vitro. Although the exact role played by HemQ remains to be characterized, to be fully functional in vitro it requires the presence of a bound heme. HemQ possesses minimal peroxidase activity, but as a catalase it has a turnover of over 10(4) min(-1). We propose that this activity may be required to eliminate hydrogen peroxide that is generated by each turnover of HemY. Given the essential nature of heme synthesis and the restricted distribution of HemQ, this protein is a potential antimicrobial target for pathogens such as Mycobacterium tuberculosis.
    Journal of Biological Chemistry 08/2010; 285(34):25978-86. · 4.65 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Here we identify a previously undescribed protein, HemQ, that is required for heme synthesis in Gram-positive bacteria. We have characterized HemQ from Bacillus subtilis and a number of Actinobacteria. HemQ is a multimeric heme-binding protein. Spectroscopic studies indicate that this heme is high spin ferric iron and is ligated by a conserved histidine with the sixth coordination site available for binding a small molecule. The presence of HemQ along with the terminal two pathway enzymes, protoporphyrinogen oxidase (HemY) and ferrochelatase, is required to synthesize heme in vivo and in vitro. Although the exact role played by HemQ remains to be characterized, to be fully functional in vitro it requires the presence of a bound heme. HemQ possesses minimal peroxidase activity, but as a catalase it has a turnover of over 104 min−1. We propose that this activity may be required to eliminate hydrogen peroxide that is generated by each turnover of HemY. Given the essential nature of heme synthesis and the restricted distribution of HemQ, this protein is a potential antimicrobial target for pathogens such as Mycobacterium tuberculosis.
    Journal of Biological Chemistry 08/2010; 285(34):25978-25986. · 4.65 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Sulfatases form a major group of enzymes present in prokaryotes and eukaryotes. This class of hydrolases is unique in requiring essential post-translational modification of a critical active-site cysteinyl or seryl residue to C(alpha)-formylglycine (FGly). Herein, we report mechanistic investigations of a unique class of radical-S-adenosyl-L-methionine (AdoMet) enzymes, namely anaerobic sulfatase-maturating enzymes (anSMEs), which catalyze the oxidation of Cys-type and Ser-type sulfatases and possess three [4Fe-4S](2+,+) clusters. We were able to develop a reliable quantitative enzymatic assay that allowed the direct measurement of FGly production and AdoMet cleavage. The results demonstrate stoichiometric coupling of AdoMet cleavage and FGly formation using peptide substrates with cysteinyl or seryl active-site residues. Analytical and EPR studies of the reconstituted wild-type enzyme and cysteinyl cluster mutants indicate the presence of three almost isopotential [4Fe-4S](2+,+) clusters, each of which is required for the generation of FGly in vitro. More surprisingly, our data indicate that the two additional [4Fe-4S](2+,+) clusters are required to obtain efficient reductive cleavage of AdoMet, suggesting their involvement in the reduction of the radical AdoMet [4Fe-4S](2+,+) center. These results, in addition to the recent demonstration of direct abstraction by anSMEs of the C(beta) H-atom from the sulfatase active-site cysteinyl or seryl residue using a 5'-deoxyadenosyl radical, provide new insights into the mechanism of this new class of radical-AdoMet enzymes.
    FEBS Journal 03/2010; 277(8):1906-20. · 4.25 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The ferredoxin-dependent nitrite reductase from the green alga Chlamydomonas reinhardtii has been cloned, expressed in Escherichia coli as a His-tagged recombinant protein, and purified to homogeneity. The spectra, kinetic properties and substrate-binding parameters of the C. reinhardtii enzyme are quite similar to those of the ferredoxin-dependent spinach chloroplast nitrite reductase. Computer modeling, based on the published structure of spinach nitrite reductase, predicts that the structure of C. reinhardtii nitrite reductase will be similar to that of the spinach enzyme. Chemical modification studies and the ionic-strength dependence of the enzyme's ability to interact with ferredoxin are consistent with the involvement of arginine and lysine residues on C. reinhardtii nitrite reductase in electrostatically-stabilized binding to ferredoxin. The C. reinhardtii enzyme has been used to demonstrate that hydroxylamine can serve as an electron-accepting substrate for the enzyme and that the product of hydroxylamine reduction is ammonia, providing the first experimental evidence for the hypothesis that hydroxylamine, bound to the enzyme, can serve as a late intermediate during the reduction of nitrite to ammonia catalyzed by the enzyme.
    Photosynthesis Research 02/2010; 103(2):67-77. · 3.15 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: WhiD, a member of the WhiB-like (Wbl) family of iron-sulfur proteins found exclusively within the actinomycetes, is required for the late stages of sporulation in Streptomyces coelicolor. Like all other Wbl proteins, WhiD has not so far been purified in a soluble form that contains a significant amount of cluster, and characterization has relied on cluster-reconstituted protein. Thus, a major goal in Wbl research is to obtain and characterize native protein containing iron-sulfur clusters. Here we report the analysis of S. coelicolor WhiD purified anaerobically from Escherichia coli as a soluble protein containing a single [4Fe-4S](2+) cluster ligated by four cysteines. Upon exposure to oxygen, spectral features associated with the [4Fe-4S] cluster were lost in a slow reaction that unusually yielded apo-WhiD directly without significant concentrations of cluster intermediates. This process was found to be highly pH dependent with an optimal stability observed between pH 7.0 and pH 8.0. Low molecular weight thiols, including a mycothiol analogue and thioredoxin, exerted a small but significant protective effect against WhiD cluster loss, an activity that could be of physiological importance. [4Fe-4S](2+) WhiD was found to react much more rapidly with superoxide than with either oxygen or hydrogen peroxide, which may also be of physiological significance. Loss of the [4Fe-4S] cluster to form apoprotein destabilized the protein fold significantly but did not lead to complete unfolding. Finally, apo-WhiD exhibited negligible activity in an insulin-based disulfide reductase assay, demonstrating that it does not function as a general protein disulfide reductase.
    Biochemistry 12/2009; 48(51):12252-64. · 3.38 Impact Factor
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    Metal Elements in Environment, Medicine and Biology; 10/2009
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    ABSTRACT: Glutaredoxins, proteins traditionally involved in redox reactions, are also required for iron-sulfur cluster assembly and haem biosynthesis. These new roles are probably related to the ability of some glutaredoxins to bind labile [2Fe-2S] clusters and to transfer them rapidly and efficiently to acceptor proteins. Recent results point to putative roles for glutaredoxins in the sensing of cellular iron and in iron-sulfur cluster biogenesis, either as scaffold proteins for the de novo synthesis of iron-sulfur clusters or as carrier proteins for the transfer of preformed iron-sulfur clusters. Based on prokaryote genome analysis and in vivo studies of iron regulation in yeast, we propose putative new roles and binding partners for glutaredoxins in the assembly of metalloproteins.
    Trends in Biochemical Sciences 10/2009; 35(1):43-52. · 13.08 Impact Factor

Publication Stats

3k Citations
464.87 Total Impact Points


  • 1993–2014
    • University of Georgia
      • • Department of Chemistry
      • • Center for Metalloenzyme Studies
      • • Department of Microbiology
      Атина, Georgia, United States
    • Louisiana State University
      • Department of Chemistry
      Baton Rouge, LA, United States
  • 2009–2012
    • University of South Carolina
      • Chemistry and Biochemistry
      Columbia, SC, United States
    • Northwestern University
      • Department of Chemistry
      Evanston, IL, United States
  • 2003–2010
    • Texas Tech University
      • • Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry
      • • Center for Biotechnology and Genomics
      Lubbock, TX, United States
  • 2005
    • Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University
      • Department of Biochemistry
      Blacksburg, VA, United States
  • 2004
    • Auburn University
      • Department of Chemistry & Biochemistry
      Auburn, AL, United States
  • 2003–2004
    • Emory University
      • Department of Physics
      Atlanta, GA, United States
  • 2002–2003
    • University of South Florida
      • Morsani College of Medicine
      Tampa, FL, United States
    • Philipps-Universität Marburg
      • Fachbereich Biologie
      Marburg an der Lahn, Hesse, Germany