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Biochem J. 2004 Nov 1;383(Pt. 3):517-27.

Brassica juncea 3-hydroxy-3-methylglutaryl (HMG)-CoA synthase 1: expression and characterization of recombinant wild-type and mutant enzymes.

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  • 1Department of Botany, The University of Hong Kong, Pokfulam, Hong Kong, China.


3-hydroxy-3-methylglutaryl (HMG)-CoA synthase (HMGS; EC is the second enzyme in the cytoplasmic mevalonate pathway of isoprenoid biosynthesis, and catalyses the condensation of acetyl-CoA with acetoacetyl-CoA (AcAc-CoA) to yield S-HMG-CoA. In this study, we have first characterized in detail a plant HMGS, Brassica juncea HMGS1 (BjHMGS1), as a His6-tagged protein from Escherichia coli. Native gel electrophoresis analysis showed that the enzyme behaves as a homodimer with a calculated mass of 105.8 kDa. It is activated by 5 mM dithioerythreitol and is inhibited by F-244 which is specific for HMGS enzymes. It has a pH optimum of 8.5 and a temperature optimum of 35 degrees C, with an energy of activation of 62.5 J x mol(-1). Unlike cytosolic HMGS from chicken and cockroach, cations like Mg2+, Mn2+, Zn2+ and Co2+ did not stimulate His6-BjHMGS1 activity in vitro; instead all except Mg2+ were inhibitory. His6-BjHMGS1 has an apparent K(m-acetyl-CoA) of 43 microM and a V(max) of 0.47 micromol x mg(-1) x min(-1), and was inhibited by one of the substrates (AcAc-CoA) and by both products (HMG-CoA and HS-CoA). Site-directed mutagenesis of conserved amino acid residues in BjHMGS1 revealed that substitutions R157A, H188N and C212S resulted in a decreased V(max), indicating some involvement of these residues in catalytic capacity. Unlike His6-BjHMGS1 and its soluble purified mutant derivatives, the H188N mutant did not display substrate inhibition by AcAc-CoA. Substitution S359A resulted in a 10-fold increased specific activity. Based on these kinetic analyses, we generated a novel double mutation H188N/S359A, which resulted in a 10-fold increased specific activity, but still lacking inhibition by AcAc-CoA, strongly suggesting that His-188 is involved in conferring substrate inhibition on His6-BjHMGS1. Substitution of an aminoacyl residue resulting in loss of substrate inhibition has never been previously reported for any HMGS.

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