Structural, Functional And Transcriptional Analysis Of Nucleoside Diphosphate Kinase From Mycobacterium Smegmatis mc2 155
Maintenance of the levels of nucleoside triphosphates (NTPs) as well as their corresponding deoxy derivatives (dNTPs) is crucial to all growth and developmental processes. The enzyme nucleoside diphosphate kinase (NDK) utilises an autophosporylated enzyme intermediate to catalyse the transfer of 5’ terminal phosphate from NTPs (mostly ATP) to nucleoside diphosphates (NDPs) via a reversible mechanism as given below. N1TP + NDK ↔N1DP+ −NDK-His* (1) N2DP + NDK-His* P ↔N2TP + NDK−His. (2) In the γ-phosphoryl group transfer, the highly conserved His 117 active site residue becomes autocatalytically phosphorylated, in the enzyme intermediate (NDK-H*). This phosphoryl group is transferred to ribo-or deoxyribonucleotides (N2DP) in a substrate non-specific manner. In addition to its fundamental role in nucleotide metabolism, NDP kinase is also involved in a number of cellular regulatory functions such as growth and developmental control, tumor metastasis suppression, signal transduction and so on. From mycobacterial genera, NDK of Mycobacterium tuberculosis (MtNDK) has been crystallised, structure was solved and biochemical functions were elucidated. However, there has not been any such study on the NDK of Mycobacterium smegmatis, except on the possible interaction with other proteins which modulates the NTP synthesising activity of MsNDK, towards specific NTPs. M. smegmatis, being a saprophytic, fast growing and non-pathogenic mycobacterium that is widely used as an experimental model mycobacterial system to study various biological processes in mycobacteria, it was thought appropriate to study NDK from this organism. The outcome of current study is presented in five chapters. The First Chapter gives a detailed introduction on the structural and functional aspects of NDK from diverse organisms, from bacteria to humans. Chapter 2. Molecular Cloning, Expression and Characterisation of Biochemical Activities of Nucleoside Diphosphate Kinase from Mycobacterium smegmatis mc 155 The research work starts with the molecular cloning, overexpression, purification, and characterisation of biochemical activities of recombinant MsNDK protein. In brief, ndk gene from M. smegmatis (Msndk) has been cloned, efficiently overexpressed as a soluble 6xHis-tagged recombinant protein, purified through affinity chromatography, and its biochemical characterisation for ATPase, GTPase and NTP synthesising activities have been demonstrated. Catalytic mutant of MsNDK, MsNDK-H117Q, was generated using site-directed mutagenesis approach and H117 was shown to be essential for the catalytic activity. Further experiments revealed that it is the same H117 that is required for mediating autophosphorylation as well, which is an intermediate in the transphosphorylation reaction of NDK. Chapter 3. Characterisation of Oligomerisation Property of M. smegmatis Nucleoside Diphosphate Kinase: the Possible Role of Hydrogen Bond and Hydrophobic Interactions The present study revealed that presence of homodimer of MsNDK could be observed in the presence of heat and SDS. Chemical cross-linking experiments revealed that MsNDK forms dimer, tetramer and hexamer. Homology modeling of MsNDK on the MtNDK crystal structure supported the existence of hexamer as three homodimers. Gln 17, Ser 24 and Glu 27 were found to be positioned at the dimer interface. Mutations on these residues did not abolish the stability of the respective mutant dimers in the presence of SDS and heat. Modeled structure of MsNDK revealed the existence of hydrophobic interactions at the dimer interface. In silico approach helped in mapping the existence of hydrophobic interactions at the dimer interface as two consecutive β-strands. Exposure of hydrophobic residues, using organic solvent methanol, abolished the dimer completely, indicating the vital role of hydrophobic interactions in the dimer stability. In solution, the native MsNDK was found to be a hexamer. Chapter 4. Mycobacterial Nucleoside Diphosphate Kinase Functions as GTPase Activating Protein for Mycobacterial Cytokinetic Protein FtsZ In Vitro Mammalian, plant, and bacterial NDKs can function as GTPase activating protein (GAP) for small G proteins namely, p21 Ras, Rad, and Rho-GTPases in animals and Pra1, Pra2, and GPA1 in Arabidopsis thaliana in vitro. We examined whether NDK of M. tuberculosis (MtNDK) can function as GAP in vitro for the cytokinetic protein FtsZ of Mycobacterium tuberculosis (MtFtsZ), which is a protein with a classical G-protein fold, possessing GTP-binding and GTPase activities (like G proteins). Both MtNDK and MsNDK could function as GAP for MtFtsZ and FtsZ of M. smegmatis (MsFtsZ) respectively in vitro. Similarly, MtNDK could function as GAP for MsFtsZ and reciprocally MsNDK could function as GAP from MtFtsZ. Interaction of NDK with respective FtsZ could be observed. Physiological implications of GAP activity of NDK on FtsZ are discussed. Chapter 5. Transcriptional Analyses of Nucleoside Diphosphate Kinase Gene of Mycobacterium smegmatis mc 155 Although there are studies on the structural and functional aspects of NDK, there are not many studies available on the transcriptional analysis of nucleoside diphosphate kinase (NDK) gene expression in general and nothing in particular in mycobacterial systems. Therefore we studied the transcriptional analysis of expression of Msndk gene, in order to map the Transcriptional Start Site (TSS), identification of promoter elements, and elucidated of transcriptional activity of the promoters. Expression of Msndk gene was analysed in exponential growth phase and under two different stress conditions wherein DNA replication gets arrested. Hydroxy Urea (HU), which reduce dNTP pools by inhibiting ribonucleotide reductase and Phenethyl Alcohol (PEA), which affects membrane structure resulting in DNA replication arrest, were used. Two transcripts and their promoter elements were mapped and their promoter activities were demonstrated. The profile of transcripts was found to be identical under the three different conditions examined.
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