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Publications (3)14.44 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: The manganese-specific superoxide dismutase SOD2 from the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae is a protein that resides in the mitochondrion and protects it against attack by superoxide radicals. However, a high iron concentration in the mitochondria results in iron misincorporation at the active site, with subsequent inactivation of SOD2. Here, the crystal structures of SOD2 bound with the native metal manganese and with the `wrong' metal iron are presented at 2.05 and 1.79 Å resolution, respectively. Structural comparison of the two structures shows no significant conformational alteration in the overall structure or in the active site upon binding the non-native metal iron. Moreover, residues Asp163 and Lys80 are proposed to potentially be responsible for the metal specificity of the Mn-specific SOD. Additionally, the surface-potential distribution of SOD2 revealed a conserved positively charged electrostatic zone in the proximity of the active site that probably functions in the same way as in Cu/Zn-SODs by facilitating the diffusion of the superoxide anion to the metal ion.
    Acta Crystallographica Section F Structural Biology and Crystallization Communications 10/2011; 67(Pt 10):1173-8. · 0.55 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The hemolymph of the fifth instar larvae of the silkworm Bombyx mori contains a group of homologous proteins with a molecular weight of approximately 30 kDa, termed B. mori low molecular weight lipoproteins (Bmlps), which account for about 5% of the total plasma proteins. These so-called "30 K proteins" have been reported to be involved in the innate immune response and transportation of lipid and/or sugar. To elucidate their molecular functions, we determined the crystal structure of a 30 K protein, Bmlp7, at 1.91Å. It has two distinct domains: an all-α N-terminal domain (NTD) and an all-β C-terminal domain (CTD) of the β-trefoil fold. Comparative structural analysis indicates that Bmlp7 represents a new family, adding to the 14 families currently identified, of the β-trefoil superfamily. Structural comparison and simulation suggest that the NTD has a putative lipid-binding cavity, whereas the CTD has a potential sugar-binding site. However, we were unable to detect the binding of either lipid or sugar. Therefore, further investigations are needed to characterize the molecular function of this protein.
    Journal of Structural Biology 07/2011; 175(1):97-103. · 3.36 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Brachydactyly type A1 (BDA1), the first recorded Mendelian autosomal dominant disorder in humans, is characterized by a shortening or absence of the middle phalanges. Heterozygous missense mutations in the Indian Hedgehog (IHH) gene have been identified as a cause of BDA1; however, the biochemical consequences of these mutations are unclear. In this paper, we analyzed three BDA1 mutations (E95K, D100E, and E131K) in the N-terminal fragment of Indian Hedgehog (IhhN). Structural analysis showed that the E95K mutation changes a negatively charged area to a positively charged area in a calcium-binding groove, and that the D100E mutation changes the local tertiary structure. Furthermore, we showed that the E95K and D100E mutations led to a temperature-sensitive and calcium-dependent instability of IhhN, which might contribute to an enhanced intracellular degradation of the mutant proteins via the lysosome. Notably, all three mutations affected Hh binding to the receptor Patched1 (PTC1), reducing its capacity to induce cellular differentiation. We propose that these are common features of the mutations that cause BDA1, affecting the Hh tertiary structure, intracellular fate, binding to the receptor/partners, and binding to extracellular components. The combination of these features alters signaling capacity and range, but the impact is likely to be variable and mutation-dependent. The potential variation in the signaling range is characterized by an enhanced interaction with heparan sulfate for IHH with the E95K mutation, but not the E131K mutation. Taken together, our results suggest that these IHH mutations affect Hh signaling at multiple levels, causing abnormal bone development and abnormal digit formation.
    Cell Research 05/2011; 21(9):1343-57. · 10.53 Impact Factor