Metal Reconstitution of Particulate Methane Monooxygenase and Heterologous Expression of the pmoB Subunit

Department of Molecular Biosciences, Northwestern University, Evanston, Illinois, USA.
Methods in enzymology (Impact Factor: 2.09). 01/2011; 495:195-210. DOI: 10.1016/B978-0-12-386905-0.00013-9
Source: PubMed


Particulate methane monooxygenase (pMMO) is a multisubunit metalloenzyme complex used by methanotrophic bacteria to oxidize methane in the first step of carbon assimilation and energy production. In this chapter, we detail methods to prepare metal free (apo) membrane-bound pMMO and to reconstitute apo pMMO with metal ions. We also describe protocols to clone, express, and refold metal-loaded soluble domain constructs of the pmoB subunit. These approaches were used to address fundamental questions concerning the metal content and location of the pMMO active site.

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    ABSTRACT: Particulate methane monooxygenase (pMMO) is an integral membrane metalloenzyme that oxidizes methane to methanol in methanotrophic bacteria. Previous biochemical and structural studies of pMMO have focused on preparations from Methylococcus capsulatus (Bath) and Methylosinus trichosporium OB3b. A pMMO from a third organism, Methylocystis species strain M, has been isolated and characterized. Both membrane-bound and solubilized Methylocystis sp. strain M pMMO contain ~2 copper ions per 100 kDa protomer and exhibit copper-dependent propylene epoxidation activity. Spectroscopic data indicate that Methylocystis sp. strain M pMMO contains a mixture of Cu(I) and Cu(II), of which the latter exhibits two distinct type 2 Cu(II) electron paramagnetic resonance (EPR) signals. Extended X-ray absorption fine structure (EXAFS) data are best fit with a mixture of Cu-O/N and Cu-Cu ligand environments with a Cu-Cu interaction at 2.52-2.64 Å. The crystal structure of Methylocystis sp. strain M pMMO was determined to 2.68 Å resolution and is the best quality pMMO structure obtained to date. It provides a revised model for the pmoA and pmoC subunits and has led to an improved model of M. capsulatus (Bath) pMMO. In these new structures, the intramembrane zinc/copper binding site has a different coordination environment from that in previous models.
    Full-text · Article · Nov 2011 · Biochemistry
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    ABSTRACT: Particulate methane monooxygenase (pMMO) is an integral membrane metalloenzyme that converts methane to methanol in methanotrophic bacteria. The enzyme consists of three subunits, pmoB, pmoA, and pmoC, organized in an α(3)β(3)γ(3) trimer. Studies of intact pMMO and a recombinant soluble fragment of the pmoB subunit (denoted as spmoB) indicate that the active site is located within the soluble region of pmoB at the site of a crystallographically modeled dicopper center. In this work, we have investigated the reactivity of pMMO and spmoB with oxidants. Upon reduction and treatment of spmoB with O(2) or H(2)O(2) or pMMO with H(2)O(2), an absorbance feature at 345 nm is generated. The energy and intensity of this band are similar to those of the μ-η(2):η(2)-peroxo-Cu(II)(2) species formed in several dicopper enzymes and model compounds. The feature is not observed in inactive spmoB variants in which the dicopper center is disrupted, consistent with O(2) binding to the proposed active site. Reaction of the 345 nm species with CH(4) results in the disappearance of the spectroscopic feature, suggesting that this O(2) intermediate is mechanistically relevant. Taken together, these observations provide strong new support for the identity and location of the pMMO active site.
    Preview · Article · Apr 2012 · Journal of the American Chemical Society
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    ABSTRACT: Particulate methane monooxygenase (pMMO) is an integral membrane metalloenzyme that oxidizes methane to methanol in methanotrophic bacteria, organisms that live on methane gas as their sole carbon source. Understanding pMMO function has important implications for bioremediation applications and for the development of new, environmentally friendly catalysts for the direct conversion of methane to methanol. Crystal structures of pMMOs from three different methanotrophs reveal a trimeric architecture, consisting of three copies each of the pmoB, pmoA, and pmoC subunits. There are three distinct metal centers in each protomer of the trimer, mononuclear and dinuclear copper sites in the periplasmic regions of pmoB and a mononuclear site within the membrane that can be occupied by copper or zinc. Various models for the pMMO active site have been proposed within these structural constraints, including dicopper, tricopper, and diiron centers. Biochemical and spectroscopic data on pMMO and recombinant soluble fragments, denoted spmoB proteins, indicate that the active site involves copper and is located at the site of the dicopper center in the pmoB subunit. Initial spectroscopic evidence for O(2) binding at this site has been obtained. Despite these findings, questions remain about the active site identity and nuclearity and will be the focus of future studies.
    Preview · Article · Jun 2012 · Critical Reviews in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology
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