Tagged: EPR

Elucidating the Structures of the Low- and High-pH Mo(V) Species in Respiratory Nitrate Reductase: A Combined EPR, 14,15N HYSCORE, and DFT Study

Julia Rendon, Frédéric Biaso, Pierre Ceccaldi, René Toci, Farida Seduk, Axel Magalon, Bruno Guigliarelli, and Stéphane Grimaldi. Inorg. Chem., 2017, 56 (8), pp 4422–4434. DOI: 10.1021/acs.inorgchem.6b03129

Combining multiple isotope-enrichment strategies in 98Mo and 15N nuclei together with EPR, HYSCORE spectroscopy, and DFT modeling, we propose a structural model of the low-pH Mo(V) species in respiratory nitrate reductase that implies coordination of the metal by a monodentate Asp222 ligand and a hydroxyl moiety. Furthermore, we unveil the peculiar involvement of the conserved Asn52 to the H-bond network around the Mo-cofactor in both low- and high-pH species.



The H-bond network surrounding the pyranopterins modulates redox cooperativity in the molybdenum-bisPGD cofactor in arsenite oxidase

Simon Duval, Joanne M. Santini, David Lemaire, Florence Chaspoul, Michael J. Russell, Stephane Grimaldi, Wolfgang Nitschke, Barbara Schoepp-Cothenet, BBA – Bioenergetics (2016) doi:10.1016/j.bbabio.2016.05.003


While the molybdenum cofactor in the majority of bisPGD enzymes goes through two consecutive 1-electron redox transitions, previous protein-film voltammetric results indicated the possibility of cooperative (n = 2) redox behavior in the bioenergetic enzyme arsenite oxidase (Aio). Combining equilibrium redox titrations, optical and EPR spectroscopies on concentrated samples obtained via heterologous expression, we unambiguously confirm this claim and quantify Aio’s redox cooperativity. The stability constant, Ks, of the MoV semi-reduced intermediate is found to be lower than 10− 3. Site-directed mutagenesis of residues in the vicinity of the Mo-cofactor demonstrates that the degree of redox cooperativity is sensitive to H-bonding interactions between the pyranopterin moieties and amino acid residues. Remarkably, in particular replacing the Gln-726 residue by Gly results in stabilization of (low-temperature) EPR-observable MoVwith KS = 4. As evidenced by comparison of room temperature optical and low temperature EPR titrations, the degree of stabilization is temperature-dependent. This highlights the importance of room-temperature redox characterizations for correctly interpreting catalytic properties in this group of enzymes.

Geochemical and phylogenetic data strongly indicate that molybdenum played an essential biocatalytic roles in early life. Molybdenum’s redox versatility and in particular the ability to show cooperative (n = 2) redox behavior provide a rationale for its paramount catalytic importance throughout the evolutionary history of life. Implications of the H-bonding network modulating Molybdenum’s redox properties on details of a putative inorganic metabolism at life’s origin are discussed.

Reductive activation in periplasmic nitrate reductase involves chemical modifications of the Mo-cofactor beyond the first coordination sphere of the metal ion

JG Jacques; V Foumond; P Arnoux; M Sabaty; E Etienne; S Grosse; F Biaso; P Bertrand; D Pignol; C Léger; B Guigliarelli; B Burlat

In Rhodobacter sphaeroides periplasmic nitrate reductase NapAB, the major Mo(V) form (the “high g” species) in air-purified samples is inactive and requires reduction to irreversibly convert into a catalytically competent form (Fourmond et al., J. Phys. Chem., 2008). In the present work, we study the kinetics of the activation process by combining EPR spectroscopy and direct electrochemistry. Upon reduction, the Mo (V) “high g” resting EPR signal slowly decays while the other redox centers of the protein are rapidly reduced, which we interpret as a slow and gated (or coupled) intramolecular electron transfer between the [4Fe–4S] center and the Mo cofactor in the inactive enzyme. Besides, we detect spin–spin interactions between the Mo(V) ion and the [4Fe–4S]1 + cluster which are modified upon activation of the enzyme, while the EPR signatures associated to the Mo cofactor remain almost unchanged. This shows that the activation process, which modifies the exchange coupling pathway between the Mo and the [4Fe–4S]1 + centers, occurs further away than in the first coordination sphere of the Mo ion. Relying on structural data and studies on Mo-pyranopterin and models, we propose a molecular mechanism of activation which involves the pyranopterin moiety of the molybdenum cofactor that is proximal to the [4Fe–4S] cluster. The mechanism implies both the cyclization of the pyran ring and the reduction of the oxidized pterin to give the competent tricyclic tetrahydropyranopterin form.

Detrimental effect of the 6 His C-terminal tag on YedY enzymatic activity and influence of the TAT signal sequence on YedY synthesis

Monique Sabaty, Sandrine Grosse, Geraldine Adryanczyk, Severine Boiry, Frederic Biaso, Pascal Arnoux and David Pignol

Background. YedY, a molybdoenzyme belonging to the sulfite oxidase family, is found in most Gram-negative bacteria. It contains a twin-arginine signal sequence that is cleaved after its translocation into the periplasm. Despite a weak reductase activity with substrates such as dimethyl sulfoxide or trimethylamine N-oxide, its natural substrate and its role in the cell remain unknown. Although sequence conservation of the YedY family displays a strictly conserved hydrophobic C-terminal residue, all known studies on Escherichia coli YedY have been performed with an enzyme containing a 6 histidine-tag at the C-terminus which could hamper enzyme activity.

Results. In this study, we demonstrate that the tag fused to the C-terminus of Rhodobacter sphaeroides YedY is detrimental to the enzyme’s reductase activity and results in an eight-fold decrease in catalytic efficiency. Nonetheless this C-terminal tag does not influence the properties of the molybdenum active site, as assayed by EPR spectroscopy. When a cleavable His-tag was fused to the N-terminus of the mature enzyme in the absence of the signal sequence, YedY was expressed and folded with its cofactor. However, when the signal sequence was added upstream of the N-ter tag, the amount of enzyme produced was approximately ten-fold higher.

Conclusion. Our study thus underscores the risk of using a C-terminus tagged enzyme while studying YedY, and presents an alternative strategy to express signal sequence-containing enzymes with an N-terminal tag. It brings new insights into molybdoenzyme maturation in R. sphaeroides showing that for some enzymes, maturation can occur in the absence of the signal sequence but that its presence is required for high expression of active enzyme.
Keywords: Molybdoenzyme; YedY; TAT machinery; Signal sequence; DMSO reductase; Rhodobacter sphaeroides; Enzyme maturation


Determination of the proton environment of high stability Menasemiquinone intermediate in Escherichia coli nitrate reductase A by pulsed EPR.

Grimaldi S, Arias-Cartin R, Lanciano P, Lyubenova S, Szenes R, Endeward B, Prisner TF, Guigliarelli B, Magalon A.

Escherichia coli nitrate reductase A (NarGHI) is a membrane-bound enzyme that couples quinol oxidation at a periplasmically oriented Q-site (QD) to proton release into the periplasm during anaerobic respiration. To elucidate the molecular mechanism underlying such a coupling, endogenous menasemiquinone-8 intermediates stabilized at the QD site (MSQD) of NarGHI have been studied by high-resolution pulsed EPR methods in combination with 1H2O/2H2O exchange experiments. One of the two non-exchangeable proton hyperfine couplings resolved in hyperfine sublevel correlation (HYSCORE) spectra of the radical displays characteristics typical from quinone methyl protons. However, its unusually small isotropic value reflects a singularly low spin density on the quinone carbon α carrying the methyl group, which is ascribed to a strong asymmetry of the MSQD binding mode and consistent with single-sided hydrogen bonding to the quinone oxygen O1. Furthermore, a single exchangeable proton hyperfine coupling is resolved, both by comparing the HYSCORE spectra of the radical in 1H2O and 2H2O samples and by selective detection of the exchanged deuterons using Q-band 2H Mims electron nuclear double resonance (ENDOR) spectroscopy. Spectral analysis reveals its peculiar characteristics, i.e. a large anisotropic hyperfine coupling together with an almost zero isotropic contribution. It is assigned to a proton involved in a short ∼1.6 Å in-plane hydrogen bond between the quinone O1 oxygen and the Nδ of the His-66 residue, an axial ligand of the distal heme bD. Structural and mechanistic implications of these results for the electron-coupled proton translocation mechanism at the QD site are discussed, in light of the unusually high thermodynamic stability of MSQD.

HYSCORE Evidence That Endogenous Mena- and Ubisemiquinone Bind at the Same Q Site (QD) of Escherichia coli Nitrate Reductase A

Arias-Cartin R, Lyubenova S, Ceccalci P, Prisner T, Magalon A, Giugliarelli B, Grimaldi S

J Am Chem Soc. 2010 May 5;132(17):5942-3. doi: 10.1021/ja1009234.

Through the use of an Escherichia coli strain deficient in menaquinone biosynthesis, purified nitrate reductase A (NarGHI)-enriched inner membrane vesicles were titrated and monitored by electron paramagnetic resonance (EPR) spectroscopy, revealing the formation of protein-bound ubisemiquinone (USQ) species. Two-dimensional ESEEM (HYSCORE) experiments on these radicals revealed the same magnetic interaction with an 14N nucleus as found for menasemiquinone stabilized at the QD site of E. coli NarGHI and assigned to His66 Nδ, a distal heme axial ligand. Moreover, this signature was lost in the NarGHIH66Y mutant, which is known to be unable to react with quinols. These findings demonstrate that NarGHI-bound USQ can be formed and detected by EPR. They also provide the first direct experimental evidence for similar binding of natural menasemiquinones and ubisemiquinones within the same protein Q site of NarGHI.

Reassessing the strategies for trapping catalytic intermediates during nitrate reductase turnover

Fourmond V, Sabaty M, Arnoux D, Bertrand P, Pignol D, Léger C.

J Phys Chem B. 2010 Mar 11;114(9):3341-7. doi: 10.1021/jp911443y.

We examined the kinetics of nitrate reduction by periplasmic nitrate reductase (Nap) by using protein film voltammetry and solution assays. We demonstrate that, under turnover conditions, the enzyme exists as a mixture of active and inactive forms which interconvert on a time scale that is much slower than turnover. The dead-end species accumulates under mildly reducing conditions and at high nitrate concentration, resulting in substrate inhibition and in an uncommon hysteresis in the voltammetric signature. Solution assays with two electron donors having different reduction potentials fully support the electrochemical results. This illustrates the consequences of the high flexibility of the active site molybdenum coordination sphere and questions the conclusions from earlier studies in which attempts were made to trap catalytic intermediates of Nap in experiments carried out under turnover conditions at very high substrate concentration.

Direct evidence for nitrogen ligation to the high-stability semiquinone intermediate in Escherichia coli nitrate reductase A

Grimaldi S, Arias-Cartin R, Lanciano P, Lyubenova S, Endeward B, Prisner TF, Magalon A, Guigliarelli B

J Biol Chem. 2010 Jan 1;285(1):179-87. doi: 10.1074/jbc.M109.060251. Epub 2009 Nov 5.

The membrane-bound heterotrimeric nitrate reductase A (NarGHI) catalyzes the oxidation of quinols in the cytoplasmic membrane of Escherichia coli and reduces nitrate to nitrite in the cytoplasm. The enzyme strongly stabilizes a menasemiquinone intermediate at a quinol oxidation site (QD) located in the vicinity of the distal heme bD. Here molecular details of the interaction between the semiquinone radical and the protein environment have been provided using advanced multifrequency pulsed EPR methods. 14N and 15N ESEEM and HYSCORE measurements carried out at X-band (∼9.7 GHz) on the wild-type enzyme or the enzyme uniformly labeled with 15N nuclei reveal an interaction between the semiquinone and a single nitrogen nucleus. The isotropic hyperfine coupling constant Aiso(14N) ∼0.8 MHz shows that it occurs via an H-bond to one of the quinone carbonyl group. Using 14N ESEEM and HYSCORE spectroscopies at a lower frequency (S-band, ∼3.4 GHz), the 14N nuclear quadrupolar parameters of the interacting nitrogen nucleus (κ = 0.49, η = 0.50) were determined and correspond to those of a histidine Nδ, assigned to the heme bD ligand His-66 residue. Moreover S-band 15N ESEEM spectra enabled us to directly measure the anisotropic part of the nitrogen hyperfine interaction (T(15N) = 0.16 MHz). A distance of ∼2.2 Åbetween the carbonyl oxygen and the nitrogen could then be calculated. Mechanistic implications of these results are discussed in the context of the peculiar properties of the menasemiquinone intermediate stabilized at the QD site of NarGHI.

Major Mo(V) EPR signature of Rhodobacter sphaeroides periplasmic nitrate reductase arising froms a dead-end species that activates upon reduction. Relation to other molybdoenzymes from the DMSO reductase family.

Fourmond V, Burlat B, Dementin S, Arnoux P, Sabaty M, Boiry S, Guigliarelli B, Bertrand P, Pignol D, Léger C

Enzymes of the DMSO reductase family use a mononuclear Mo-bis(molybdopterin) cofactor (MoCo) to catalyze a variety of oxo-transfer reactions. Much functional information on nitrate reductase, one of the most studied members of this family, has been gained from EPR spectroscopy, but this technique is not always conclusive because the signature of the MoCo is heterogeneous, and which signals correspond to active species is still unsure. We used site-directed mutagenesis, EPR and protein film voltammetry to demonstrate that the MoCo in R. sphaeroides periplasmic nitrate reductase (NapAB) is subject to an irreversible reductive activation process whose kinetics we precisely define. This activation quantitatively correlates with the disappearance of the so-called “Mo(V) high-g” EPR signal, but this reductive process is too slow to be part of the normal catalytic cycle. Therefore, in NapAB, this most intense and most commonly observed signature of the MoCo arises from a dead-end, inactive state that gives a catalytically competent species only after reduction. This activation proceeds, even without substrate, according to a reduction followed by an irreversible nonredox step, both of which are pH independent. An apparently similar process occurs in other nitrate reductases (both assimilatory and membrane bound), and this also recalls the redox cycling procedure, which activates periplasmic DMSO reductases and simplifies their spectroscopic signatures. Hence we propose that heterogeneity at the active site and reductive activation are common properties of enzymes from the DMSO reductase family. Regarding NapAB, the fact that we could detect no Mo EPR signal upon reoxidizing the fully reduced enzyme suggests that the catalytically active form of the Mo(V) is thermodynamically unstable, as is the case for other enzymes of the DMSO reductase family. Our original approach, which combines spectroscopy and protein film voltammetry, proves useful for discriminating the forms of the active site on the basis of their catalytic properties. This could be applied to other enzymes for which the question arises as to the catalytic relevance of certain long-lived, spectroscopically characterized species.