[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Human sterile alpha motif domain-containing 9 (SAMD9) protein is a host restriction factor for poxviruses, but it can be overcome by some poxvirus host-range proteins that share homology with vaccinia virus C7 protein. To understand the mechanism of action for this important family of host-range factors, we determined the crystal structures of C7 and myxoma virus M64, a C7 family member that is unable to antagonize SAMD9. Despite their different functions and only 23% sequence identity, the two proteins have very similar overall structures, displaying a previously unidentified fold comprised of a compact 12-stranded antiparallel β-sandwich wrapped in two short α helices. Extensive structure-guided mutagenesis of C7 identified three loops clustered on one edge of the β sandwich as critical for viral replication and binding with SAMD9. The loops are characterized with functionally important negatively charged, positively charged, and hydrophobic residues, respectively, together forming a unique "three-fingered molecular claw." The key residues of the claw are not conserved in two C7 family members that do not antagonize SAMD9 but are conserved in distantly related C7 family members from four poxvirus genera that infect diverse mammalian species. Indeed, we found that all in the latter group of proteins bind SAMD9. Taken together, our data indicate that diverse mammalian poxviruses use a conserved molecular claw in a C7-like protein to target SAMD9 and overcome host restriction.
Full-text · Article · Nov 2015 · Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: We previously determined the structure of neurotensin receptor NTSR1 in an active-like conformation with six thermostabilizing mutations bound to the peptide agonist neurotensin. This receptor was unable to activate G proteins, indicating that the mutations restricted NTSR1 to relate agonist binding to G-protein activation. Here we analyse the effect of three of those mutations (E166A(3.49), L310A(6.37), F358A(7.42)) and present two structures of NTSR1 able to catalyse nucleotide exchange at Gα. The presence of F358(7.42) causes the conserved W321(6.48) to adopt a side chain orientation parallel to the lipid bilayer sealing the collapsed Na(+) ion pocket and linking the agonist with residues in the lower receptor part implicated in GPCR activation. In the intracellular receptor half, the bulkier L310(6.37) side chain dictates the position of R167(3.50) of the highly conserved D/ERY motif. These residues, together with the presence of E166(3.49) provide determinants for G-protein activation by NTSR1.
No preview · Article · Jul 2015 · Nature Communications
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Interleukin-18 (IL-18) is a pleiotropic pro-inflammatory cytokine belonging to the IL-1 superfamily. IL-18 plays an important role in host innate and acquired immune defense, with its activity being modulated
by its naturally occurring antagonist IL-18 binding protein (IL-18BP). Recent crystal structures of human IL-18 (hIL-18) in complex with its antagonist or cognate receptor(s) have revealed a conserved binding interface on hIL-18 representing a promising drug target. An important step in this process is obtaining crystals of apo hIL-18 or hIL-18 in complex with small-molecule inhibitors, preferably under low ionic strength conditions. In this study, surface-entropy reduction (SER) and rational protein design were employed to facilitate the crystallization of hIL-18. The results provide an excellent platform for structure-based drug design.
No preview · Article · Jun 2015 · Acta Crystallographica Section F: Structural Biology Communications
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The past few years have seen spectacular progress in the structure determination of G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs). We now have structural representatives from classes A, B, C, and F. Within the rhodopsin-like class A, most structures belong to the α group, whereas fewer GPCR structures are available from the β, γ, and δ groups, which include peptide GPCRs such as the receptors for neurotensin (β group), opioids, chemokines (γ group), and protease-activated receptors (δ group). Structural information on peptide GPCRs is restricted to complexes with non-peptidic drug-like antagonists with the exception of the chemokine receptor CXCR4 that has been crystallized in the presence of a cyclic peptide antagonist. Notably, the neurotensin receptor (NTSR1) is to date the only peptide GPCR whose structure has been solved in the presence of a peptide agonist. Although limited in number, the current peptide GPCR structures reveal great diversity in shape and electrostatic properties of the ligand binding pockets, features that play key roles in the discrimination of ligands. Here, we review these aspects of peptide GPCRs in view of possible models for peptide agonist binding.
Preview · Article · Mar 2015 · Frontiers in Pharmacology
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Interleukin-1 superfamily of cytokines (IL-1, IL-18, IL-33) play key roles in inflammation and regulating immunity. The mechanisms of agonism and antagonism in the IL-1 superfamily have been pursued by structural biologists for nearly 20 years. New insights into these mechanisms were recently provided by the crystal structures of the ternary complexes of IL-1β and its receptors. We will review here the structural biology related to receptor recognition by IL-1 superfamily cytokines and the regulation of its cytokine activities by antagonists.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Interleukin 18 (IL18) is a cytokine that plays an important role in inflammation as well as host defense against microbes. Mammals encode a soluble inhibitor of IL18 termed IL18 binding protein (IL18BP) that modulates IL18 activity through a negative feedback mechanism. Many poxviruses encode homologous IL18BPs, which contribute to virulence. Previous structural and functional studies on IL18 and IL18BPs revealed an essential binding hot spot involving a lysine on IL18 and two aromatic residues on IL18BPs. The aromatic residues are conserved among the very diverse mammalian and poxviruses IL18BPs with the notable exception of yatapoxvirus IL18BPs, which lack a critical phenylalanine residue. To understand the mechanism by which yatapoxvirus IL18BPs neutralize IL18, we solved the crystal structure of the Yaba-Like Disease Virus (YLDV) IL18BP and IL18 complex at 1.75 Å resolution. YLDV-IL18BP forms a disulfide bonded homo-dimer engaging IL18 in a 2∶2 stoichiometry, in contrast to the 1∶1 complex of ectromelia virus (ECTV) IL18BP and IL18. Disruption of the dimer interface resulted in a functional monomer, however with a 3-fold decrease in binding affinity. The overall architecture of the YLDV-IL18BP:IL18 complex is similar to that observed in the ECTV-IL18BP:IL18 complex, despite lacking the critical lysine-phenylalanine interaction. Through structural and mutagenesis studies, contact residues that are unique to the YLDV-IL18BP:IL18 binding interface were identified, including Q67, P116 of YLDV-IL18BP and Y1, S105 and D110 of IL18. Overall, our studies show that YLDV-IL18BP is unique among the diverse family of mammalian and poxvirus IL-18BPs in that it uses a bivalent binding mode and a unique set of interacting residues for binding IL18. However, despite this extensive divergence, YLDV-IL18BP binds to the same surface of IL18 used by other IL18BPs, suggesting that all IL18BPs use a conserved inhibitory mechanism by blocking a putative receptor-binding site on IL18.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: A high-throughput screening of natural product libraries identified (-)-gambogic acid (1), a component of the exudate of Garcinia harburyi, as a potential Hsp90 inhibitor, in addition to the known Hsp90 inhibitor celastrol (2). Subsequent testing established that 1 inhibited cell proliferation, brought about the degradation of Hsp90 client proteins in cultured cells, and induced the expression of Hsp70 and Hsp90, which are hallmarks of Hsp90 inhibition. Gambogic acid also disrupted the interaction of Hsp90, Hsp70, and Cdc37 with the heme-regulated eIF2α kinase (HRI, an Hsp90-dependent client) and blocked the maturation of HRI in vitro. Surface plasmon resonance spectroscopy indicated that 1 bound to the N-terminal domain of Hsp90 with a low micromolar Kd, in a manner that was not competitive with the Hsp90 inhibitor geldanamycin (3). Molecular docking experiments supported the posit that 1 binds Hsp90 at a site distinct from Hsp90s ATP binding pocket. The data obtained have firmly established 1 as a novel Hsp90 inhibitor and have provided evidence of a new site that can be targeted for the development of improved Hsp90 inhibitors.
Full-text · Article · May 2011 · Journal of Natural Products
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: LRRK2 is a 250 kDa multidomain protein, mutations in which cause familial Parkinson's disease. Previously, we have demonstrated that the R1441C mutation in the ROC domain decreases GTPase activity. Here we show that the R1441C alters the folding properties of the ROC domain, lowering its thermodynamic stability. Similar to small GTPases, binding of different guanosine nucleotides alters the stability of the ROC domain, suggesting that there is an alteration in conformation dependent on GDP or GTP occupying the active site. GTP/GDP bound state also alters the self-interaction of the ROC domain, accentuating the impact of the R1441C mutation on this property. These data suggest a mechanism whereby the R1441C mutation can reduce the GTPase activity of LRRK2, and highlights the possibility of targeting the stability of the ROC domain as a therapeutic avenue in LRRK2 disease.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Human interleukin-18 (hIL-18) is a cytokine that plays an important role in inflammation and host defense against microbes. Its activity is regulated in vivo by a naturally occurring antagonist, the human IL-18-binding protein (IL-18BP). Functional homologs of human IL-18BP are encoded by all orthopoxviruses, including variola virus, the causative agent of smallpox. They contribute to virulence by suppressing IL-18-mediated immune responses. Here, we describe the 2.0-A resolution crystal structure of an orthopoxvirus IL-18BP, ectromelia virus IL-18BP (ectvIL-18BP), in complex with hIL-18. The hIL-18 structure in the complex shows significant conformational change at the binding interface compared with the structure of ligand-free hIL-18, indicating that the binding is mediated by an induced-fit mechanism. EctvIL-18BP adopts a canonical Ig fold and interacts via one edge of its beta-sandwich with 3 cavities on the hIL-18 surface through extensive hydrophobic and hydrogen bonding interactions. Most of the ectvIL-18BP residues that participate in these interactions are conserved in both human and viral homologs, explaining their functional equivalence despite limited sequence homology. EctvIL-18BP blocks a putative receptor-binding site on IL-18, thus preventing IL-18 from engaging its receptor. Our structure provides insights into how IL-18BPs modulate hIL-18 activity. The revealed binding interface provides the basis for rational design of inhibitors against orthopoxvirus IL-18BP (for treating orthopoxvirus infection) or hIL-18 (for treating certain inflammatory and autoimmune diseases).
Full-text · Article · Jan 2009 · Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Plasmodium and other apicomplexan parasites are deficient in purine biosynthesis, relying instead on the salvage of purines from their host environment. Therefore, interference with the purine salvage pathway is an attractive therapeutic target. The plasmodial enzyme adenosine deaminase (ADA) plays a central role in purine salvage and, unlike mammalian ADA homologs, has a further secondary role in methylthiopurine recycling. For this reason, plasmodial ADA accepts a wider range of substrates, as it is responsible for deamination of both adenosine and 5'-methylthioadenosine. The latter substrate is not accepted by mammalian ADA homologs. The structural basis for this natural difference in specificity between plasmodial and mammalian ADA has not been well understood. We now report crystal structures of Plasmodium vivax ADA in complex with adenosine, guanosine, and the picomolar inhibitor 2'-deoxycoformycin. These structures highlight a drastic conformational change in plasmodial ADA upon substrate binding that has not been observed for mammalian ADA enzymes. Further, these complexes illuminate the structural basis for the differential substrate specificity and potential drug selectivity between mammalian and parasite enzymes.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: An actomyosin motor located underneath the plasma membrane drives motility and host-cell invasion of apicomplexan parasites such as Plasmodium falciparum and Plasmodium vivax, the causative agents of malaria. Aldolase connects the motor actin filaments to transmembrane adhesive proteins of the thrombospondin-related anonymous protein (TRAP) family and transduces the motor force across the parasite surface. The TRAP-aldolase interaction is a distinctive and critical trait of host hepatocyte invasion by Plasmodium sporozoites, with a likely similar interaction crucial for erythrocyte invasion by merozoites. Here, we describe 2.4-A and 2.7-A structures of P. falciparum aldolase (PfAldo) obtained from crystals grown in the presence of the C-terminal hexapeptide of TRAP from Plasmodium berghei. The indole ring of the critical penultimate Trp-residue of TRAP fits snugly into a newly formed hydrophobic pocket, which is exclusively delimited by hydrophilic residues: two arginines, one glutamate, and one glutamine. Comparison with the unliganded PfAldo structure shows that the two arginines adopt new side-chain rotamers, whereas a 25-residue subdomain, forming a helix-loop-helix unit, shifts upon binding the TRAP-tail. The structural data are in agreement with decreased TRAP binding after mutagenesis of PfAldo residues in and near the induced TRAP-binding pocket. Remarkably, the TRAP- and actin-binding sites of PfAldo seem to overlap, suggesting that both the plasticity of the aldolase active-site region and the multimeric nature of the enzyme are crucial for its intriguing nonenzymatic function in the invasion machinery of the malaria parasite.
Full-text · Article · Apr 2007 · Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The type 2 secretion system (T2SS) occurring in Gram-negative bacteria is composed of 12-15 different proteins which form large assemblies spanning two membranes and secreting several virulence factors in folded state across the outer membrane. The T2SS component EpsC of Vibrio cholerae plays an important role in this machinery. While anchored in the inner membrane, by far the largest part of EpsC is periplasmic, containing a so-called homology region (HR) domain and a PDZ domain. Here we report studies on the structure and function of both periplasmic domains of EpsC. The crystal structures of two variants of the PDZ domain of EpsC from V. cholerae were determined at better than 2 A resolution. Compared to the short variant, the longer variant contains an additional N-terminal helix, and reveals a significant difference in the position of helix alphaB with respect to the beta-sheet. Both our structures show that the PDZ domain of EpsC adopts a more open form than in previously reported structures of other PDZ domains. Most interestingly, in the crystals of the short EpsC-PDZ domain the peptide binding groove interacts with an alpha-helix from a neighboring subunit burying approximately 921 A2 solvent accessible surface. This makes it possible that the PDZ domain of this bacterial protein binds proteins in a manner which is altogether different from that seen in any other PDZ domain so far. We also determined that the HR domain of EpsC is primarily responsible for the interaction with the secretin EpsD, while the PDZ is not, or much less, so. This new finding, together with studies of others, leads to the suggestion that the PDZ domain of EpsC may interact with exoproteins to be secreted while the HR domain plays a key role in linking the inner-membrane sub-complex of the T2SS in V. cholerae to the outer membrane secretin.
No preview · Article · Nov 2006 · Journal of Molecular Biology
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Structural biology studies on cholera toxin and the closely related heat-labile enterotoxin from enterotoxigenic Escherichia coli over the past decade have shed light on the mechanism of toxin action at molecular and atomic levels. Also, components of the extracellular protein secretion apparatus that translocate the toxins across the outer membrane are being investigated. At the same time, structure-based design has led to various classes of compounds targeting different toxin sites, including highly potent multivalent inhibitors that block the toxin receptor-binding process.
No preview · Article · Nov 2004 · International Journal of Medical Microbiology
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Type II secretion systems consist of an assembly of 12-15 Gsp proteins responsible for transporting a variety of virulence factors across the outer membrane in several pathogenic bacteria. In Vibrio cholerae, the major virulence factor cholera toxin is secreted by the Eps Type II secretion apparatus consisting of 14 Eps proteins. One of these, EpsE, is a cytoplasmic putative NTPase essential for the functioning of the Eps system and member of the GspE subfamily of Type II secretion ATPases. The crystal structure of a truncated form of EpsE in nucleotide-liganded and unliganded state has been determined, and reveals a two-domain architecture with the four characteristic sequence "boxes" of the GspE subfamily clustering around the nucleotide-binding site of the C-domain. This domain contains two C-terminal subdomains not reported before in this superfamily of NTPases. One of these subdomains contains a four-cysteine motif that appears to be involved in metal binding as revealed by anomalous difference density. The EpsE subunits form a right-handed helical arrangement in the crystal with extensive and conserved contacts between the C and N domains of neighboring subunits. Combining the most conserved interface with the quaternary structure of the C domain in a distant homolog, a hexameric model for EpsE is proposed which may reflect the assembly of this critical protein in the Type II secretion system. The nucleotide ligand contacts both domains in this model. The N2-domain-containing surface of the hexamer appears to be highly conserved in the GspE family and most likely faces the inner membrane interacting with other members of the Eps system.
No preview · Article · Nov 2003 · Journal of Molecular Biology