Szabó, E., Böcskei, Z., Náray-Szabó, G. & Gráf, L.

The three-dimensional structure of Asp189Ser trypsin provides evidence for an inherent structural plasticity of the protease.

Eur J Biochem 263, 20-6.

Trypsin mutant Asp189Ser, first described by Gráf et al. [Gráf, L., Jancsó, A., Szilágyi, L., Hegyi, G., Pintér, K., Náray-Szabó, G., Hepp, J., Medzihradszky, K. & Rutter, W.J. (1988) Proc. Natl Acad. Sci. USA 85, 4961-4965] has played an important role in recent studies on the structural basis of substrate-specific catalysis by serine proteases. The present work reports the three-dimensional structure of this mutant crystallized in unliganded form: the first unliganded rat trypsin structure reported. The X-ray structure of the Asp189Ser trypsin mutant in complex with bovine pancreatic trypsin inhibitor is already known. The X-ray structure of free Asp189Ser rat trypsin revealed that the single amino acid mutation at the bottom of the substrate binding pocket of trypsin resulted in extensive structural changes around the mutated site and in dimerization of the mutant, in contrast with the complexed enzyme the structure of which is practically the same as that of wild-type trypsin. The structural rearrangement in the mutant was shown to be restricted to the activation domain region providing further evidence for the allosteric property of this structural-functional unit of the enzyme. This study supports our view that the plasticity of the activation domain may play an important role in the mechanism of substrate-specific serine protease action.

Sahin-Tóth, M., Gráf, L. & Tóth, M.

Trypsinogen stabilization by mutation Arg117-->His: a unifying pathomechanism for hereditary pancreatitis?

Biochem Biophys Res Commun 264, 505-8.

Mutations Arg117-->His and Asn21-->Ile of the human cationic trypsinogen have been recently identified in patients affected by hereditary pancreatitis (HP). The Arg117-->His substitution is believed to cause pancreatitis by eliminating an essential autolytic cleavage site in trypsin, thereby rendering the protease resistant to inactivation through autolysis. Here we demonstrate that the Arg117-->His mutation also significantly inhibits autocatalytic trypsinogen breakdown under Ca(2+)-free conditions and stabilizes the zymogen form of rat trypsin. Taken together with recent findings demonstrating that the Asn21-->Ile mutation stabilizes rat trypsinogen against autoactivation and consequent autocatalytic degradation, the observations suggest a unifying molecular pathomechanism for HP in which zymogen stabilization plays a central role.

Málnási-Csizmadia, A., Hegyi, G., Tölgyesi, F., Szent-Györgyi, A. G. & Nyitray, L.

Fluorescence measurements detect changes in scallop myosin regulatory domain.

Eur J Biochem 261, 452-8.

Ca2+-induced conformational changes of scallop myosin regulatory domain (RD) were studied using intrinsic fluorescence. Both the intensity and anisotropy of tryptophan fluorescence decreased significantly upon removal of Ca2+. By making a mutant RD we found that the Ca2+-induced fluorescence change is due mainly to Trp21 of the essential light chain which is located at the unusual Ca2+-binding EF-hand motif of the first domain. This result suggests that Trp21 is in a less hydrophobic and more flexible environment in the Ca2+-free state, supporting a model for regulation based on the 2 A resolution structure of scallop RD with bound Ca2+ [Houdusse A. and Cohen C. (1996) Structure 4, 21-32]. Binding of the fluorescent probe, 8-anilinonaphthalene-1-sulphonate (ANS) to the RD senses the dissociation of the regulatory light chain (RLC) in the presence of EDTA, by energy transfer from a tryptophan cluster (Trp818, 824, 826, 827) on the heavy chain (HC). We identified a hydrophobic pentapeptide (Leu836-Ala840) at the head-rod junction which is required for the effective energy transfer and conceivably is part of the ANS-binding site. Extension of the HC component of RD towards the rod region results in a larger ANS response, presumably indicating changes in HC-RLC interactions, which might be crucial for the regulatory function of scallop myosin.

Malik, Z., Amir, S., Pál, G., Buzás, Z., á, Antal, J., Szilagyi, Z., Vekey, K., Asbóth, B., Patthy, A. & Gráf, L.

Proteinase inhibitors from desert locust, Schistocerca gregaria: engineering of both P(1) and P(1)' residues converts a potent chymotrypsin inhibitor to a potent trypsin inhibitor.

Biochim Biophys Acta 1434, 143-50.

Kaslik, G., Westler, W. M., Gráf, L. & Markley, J. L.

Properties of the His57-Asp102 dyad of rat trypsin D189S in the zymogen, activated enzyme, and alpha1-proteinase inhibitor complexed forms.

Arch Biochem Biophys 362, 254-64.

Structural and biochemical studies suggest that serpins induce structural rearrangements in their target serine-proteinases. Previous NMR studies of the complex between a serpin, alpha1-proteinase inhibitor, and a mutant of recombinant rat trypsin (the Asp189 to Ser mutant, D189S, which is much more stable than wild-type rat trypsin against autoproteolysis) provided information about the state of catalytic residues in this complex: the hydrogen bond between Asp102 and His57 remains intact in the complex, and spectral properties of His57 are more like those of the zymogen than of the activated enzyme (G. Kaslik, et al., 1997, Biochemistry 36, 5455-5464). Here we report the protonation and exchange behavior of His57 of recombinant rat trypsin D189S in three states: the zymogen, the active enzyme, and the complex with human alpha1-proteinase inhibitor and compare these with analogous behavior of His57 of bovine chymotrypsinogen and alpha-chymotrypsin. In these studies the pKa of His57 has been determined from the pH dependence of the 1H NMR signal from the Hdelta1 proton of histidine in the Asp102-His57 dyad, and a measure of the accessibility of this part of the active site has been obtained from the rate of appearance of this signal following its selective saturation. The activation of rat trypsinogen D189S (zymogen, pKa = 7.8 +/- 0.1; Hill coefficient = 0. 86 +/- 0.05) decreased the pKa of His57 by 1.1 unit and made the protonation process cooperative (active enzyme, pKa = 6.7 +/- 0.1; Hill coefficient = 1.37 +/- 0.08). The binding of alpha1-proteinase inhibitor to trypsin D189S led to an increase in the pKa value of His57 to a value higher than that of the zymogen and led to negative cooperativity in the protonation process (complex, pKa = 8.1 +/- 0. 1; Hill coefficient = 0.70 +/- 0.08), as was observed for the zymogen. In spite of these differences in the pKa of His57 in the zymogen, active enzyme, and alpha1-proteinase inhibitor complex, the solvent exchange lifetime of the His57 Hdelta1 proton was the same, within experimental error, in all three states (lifetime = 2 to 12.5 ms). The linewidth of the 1H NMR signal from the Hdelta1 proton of His57 was relatively sharp, at temperatures between 5 and 20 degrees C at both low pH (5.2) and high pH (10.0), in spectra of bovine alpha-chymotrypsin, recombinant rat trypsin D189S, and the complex between rat trypsin D189S and human alpha1-proteinase inhibitor; however, in spectra of the complex between alpha-chymotrypsin and human alpha1-proteinase inhibitor, the peak was broader and could be well-resolved only at the lower temperature (5 degrees C).

Kardos, J., Bódi, A., Závodszky, P., Venekei, I. & Gráf, L.

Disulfide-linked propeptides stabilize the structure of zymogen and mature pancreatic serine proteases.

Biochemistry 38, 12248-57.

Chymotrypsinogen and proelastase 2 are the only pancreatic proteases with propeptides that remain attached to the active enzyme via a disulfide bridge. It is likely, although not proven, that these propeptides are functionally important in the active enzymes, as well as in the zymogens. A mutant chymotrypsin was constructed to test this hypothesis, but it was demonstrated that the lack of the propeptide had no effect on the catalytic efficiency, substrate specificity, or folding of the protein [Venekei, I., et al. (1996) FEBS Lett. 379, 139-142]. In this paper, we investigate the role of the disulfide-linked propeptide in the conformational stability of chymotrypsin(ogen). We compare the stabilities of the wild-type and mutant proteins (lacking propeptide-enzyme interactions) in their zymogen (chymotrypsinogen) and active (chymotrypsin) forms. The mutants exhibited a substantially increased sensitivity to heat denaturation and guanidine hydrochloride unfolding, and a faster loss of activity at extremes of pH relative to those of their wild-type counterparts. From guanidine hydrochloride denaturation experiments, we determined that covalently linked propeptide provides about 24 kJ/mol of free energy of extra stabilization (DeltaDeltaG). In addition, the mutant chymotrypsinogen lacked the normal resistance to digestion by pepsin. This may also explain (besides keeping the zymogen inactive) the evolutionary conservation of the propeptide-enzyme interactions. Tryptophan fluorescence, circular dichroism, microcalorimetric, and activity measurements suggest that the propeptide of chymotrypsin restricts the relative mobility between the two domains of the molecule. In pancreatic serine proteases, such as trypsin, that lose the propeptide upon activation, this function appears to be accomplished via alternative interdomain contacts.

Hudáky, P., Kaslik, G., Venekei, I. & Gráf, L.

The differential specificity of chymotrypsin A and B is determined by amino acid 226.

Eur J Biochem 259, 528-33.

The A and B isoforms of the pancreatic serine proteinase, chymotrypsin are known to cleave substrates selectively at peptide bonds formed by some hydrophobic residues, like tryptophan, phenylalanine and tyrosine. We found, however, that the B forms of native bovine and recombinant rat chymotrypsins are two orders of magnitude less active on the tryptophanyl than on the phenylalanyl or tyrosyl substrates, while bovine chymotrypsin A cleaves all these substrates with comparable catalytic efficiency. Analysing the structure of substrate binding pocket of chymotrypsin A prompted us to perform an Ala226Gly substitution in rat chymotrypsin B. The specificity profile of the Ala226Gly rat chymotrypsin B became similar to that of bovine chymotrypsin A suggesting that only the amino acid at sequence position 226 is responsible for the differential specificities of chymotrypsin A and B isoenzymes.