1. Rupture of the hydrogen bond linking two Omega-loops induces the molten globule state at neutral pH in cytochrome c
Federica Sinibaldi, M Cristina Piro, Barry D Howes, Giulietta Smulevich, Franca Ascoli, Roberto Santucci Biochemistry. 2003 Jun 24;42(24):7604-10. doi: 10.1021/bi034132r.
His26Tyr and His33Tyr mutants were obtained from the Cys102Thr variant of yeast iso-1-cytochrome c. Spectroscopic studies show that a mutation at position 26 at pH 7.0 enhances flexibility of the peptide, alters the heme pocket region and the axial coordination to heme-iron, and reduces protein stability. The His26Tyr mutant shows properties typical of the molten globule. Further, formation of an axially misligated minor low spin species occurs with partial displacement of Met80, the axial ligand of the heme-iron in the native protein. The pK(a) determined for the alkaline transition of this mutant is 7.48 (+/- 0.05), approximately 0.5 lower than that of the wild-type protein. Hence, the alkaline conformer is populated at pH 7.0, and the sixth ligand of the misligated species is proposed to be a lysine. Furthermore, a reduction in catalytic activity indicates that the functional properties are altered. The results suggest that the structural and functional changes observed in the His26Tyr mutant are because the mutation frees the two Omega-loops that, in the native protein, are linked by the hydrogen bond between His26 and Glu44. Hence, one may infer that the His26-Glu44 hydrogen bond is essential for the rigidity and stability of the native protein. In its absence, the heightened flexibility of the peptide fold results in conversion of the macromolecule to a molten globule state, even at neutral pH. Ligand exchange at the sixth coordination position of the heme-iron(III) observed as the minor species (i.e., the alkaline conformer) is therefore induced by a long-range effect. This result is of interest since mutations reported to date, which stabilize the alkaline conformer, all occur in the loop including Met80. By contrast, only very minor spectroscopic (and, thus, structural) changes are observed for the His33Tyr mutant. This suggests that His33 does not form intramolecular bonds considered important for the protein structure and stability, and is consistent with the high variability of residues at position 33 in cytochromes c.
2. Evaluation of cooperative interactions between substructures of iso-1-cytochrome c using double mutant cycles
Eydiejo Wandschneider, Barbara N Hammack, Bruce E Bowler Biochemistry. 2003 Sep 16;42(36):10659-66. doi: 10.1021/bi034958t.
A double mutant cycle has been used to evaluate interaction energies between the global stabilizer mutation asparagine 52 --> isoleucine (N52I) in iso-1-cytochrome c and mutations producing single surface histidines at positions 26, 33, 39, 54, 73, 89, and 100. These histidine mutation sites are distributed through the four cooperative folding units of cytochrome c. The double mutant cycle starts with the iso-1-cytochrome c variant AcTM, a variant with no surface histidines and with asparagine at position 52. Isoleucine is added singly at position 52, AcTMI52 variant, as are the surface histidines, AcHX variants, where X indicates the histidine sequence position. The double mutant variants, AcHXI52, provide the remaining corner of the double mutant cycle. The stabilities of all variants were determined by guanidine hydrochloride denaturation and interaction energies were calculated between position 52 and each histidine site. Six of the seven double mutants show additive (AcH33I52, AcH39I52, AcH54I52, AcH89I52, and AcH100I52) stability effects or weak interaction energies (AcH73I52) of the histidine mutations and the N52I mutation, consistent with cooperative effects on protein folding and stability being sparsely distributed through the protein structure. The AcH26I52 variant shows a strong favorable interaction energy, 2.0 +/- 0.5 kcal/mol, between the N52I mutation in one substructure and the addition of His 26 to an adjacent substructure. The data are consistent with an entropic stabilization of the intersubstructure hydrogen bond between His 26 and Glu 44 by the Ile 52 mutation.
3. Structure, function, and temperature sensitivity of directed, random mutants at proline 76 and glycine 77 in omega-loop D of yeast iso-1-cytochrome c
J S Fetrow, J S Spitzer, B M Gilden, S J Mellender, T J Begley, B J Haas, T L Boose Biochemistry. 1998 Feb 24;37(8):2477-87. doi: 10.1021/bi972279a.
Residues 75-78 form a tight turn within Omega-loop D in Saccharomyces cerevisiae iso-1-cytochrome c. Directed, random mutagenesis of invariant residues proline 76 and glycine 77 in this turn were analyzed for the in vivo functionality and level of protein within the cell. All proteins, except Pro76Val, also exhibit a significant decrease in intracellular cytochrome c levels, ranging from 15% to 80% of wild type. Furthermore, all isolated mutant strains, except the one expressing Pro76Val, exhibit a significant decrease in growth on lactate medium, suggesting that the variant cytochromes are much less functional than wild type. This requirement for protein function is clearly the cause for the strict invariance of these residues in eukaryotic cytochromes c. Seven proteins with mutations just at Pro76 were purified and studied by circular dichroism spectroscopy. All proteins with mutations at Pro76 exhibit melting temperatures about 7 degreesC less than that of the wild-type protein, suggesting that mutation of Pro76 affects the entropy of the denatured state. It is proposed that the functional significance of Pro76 and Gly77 is the requirement for a type II (betagammaL) beta-turn in this loop, the conformation of which requires a glycine at the third position, and that a change occurs in this turn conformation upon a change in the redox state of the protein.