Characterization of 4-demethylwyosine Synthase, a Radical S-adenosyl-l-methionine Enzyme Involved in the Modification of tRNA
AuthorYoung, Anthony Peter
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PublisherThe University of Arizona.
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EmbargoRelease after 07-Sep-2017
AbstractWyosine derivatives are highly complex modified ribonucleic acid (RNA) bases found in archaea and eukarya. They are a modification of a genetically encoded guanosine found at position 37 of phenylalanine encoding transfer ribonucleic acid (tRNA). The second step in the biosynthesis of all wyosine derivatives, in both archaea and eukarya, is the transformation of N-methylguanosine to 4-demethylwyosine by the radical S-adenosyl-l-methionine enzyme TYW1. When these studies were initiated, the substrate of TYW1 was unknown. Four possible substrates; acetyl CoA, acetyl phosphate, phosphoenolpyruvate, and pyruvate; were tested for activity. Only incubation with pyruvate led to production of 4-demethylwyosine. As only two new carbons are incorporated into the RNA base at this step, ¹³C isotopologues were used to identify the carbons that are transferred into 4-demethylwyosine. These experiments revealed that C2 and C3 of pyruvate are incorporated into 4-demethylwyosine, with C1 lost as an unknown byproduct. Utilizing pyruvate containing deuteriums in place of protons on the C3 carbon, the regiochemistry of the addition was determined. It was found that C3 forms the methyl group of 4-demethylwyosine and C2 becomes the bridging carbon in the imidazoline ring. The site of hydrogen atom abstraction by 5'-deoxyadenosyl radical was identified as the N-methylguanosine methyl group through the use of tRNA containing a deuterated methyl group. The putative mechanism for this transformation involved the formation of an enzyme substrate Schiff base through a conserved lysine residue. Utilizing sodium cyanoborohydride a Schiff base was trapped between TYW1 and pyruvate. The mass of the trapped adduct responded as expected when different isotopologues of pyruvate were used, demonstrating that it is due to pyruvate. Moreover, the fragment of TYW1 that contained the trapped adduct contained two lysine residues, one of which was shown to be required for activity both in vivo and in vitro. It was initially proposed that TYW1 contained two iron-sulfur clusters, and then subsequently shown to have two 4Fe-4S clusters. Site directed mutagenesis, along with iron and sulfide analysis identified the cysteines; as C26, C39, and C52; coordinating the second 4Fe-4S cluster. This study identified pyruvate as the substrate of TYW1, and provided evidence for key steps in the transformation of N-methylguanosine to 4-demethylwyosine.
Degree ProgramGraduate College