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Protein Eng. 1997 Dec;10(12):1385-93.

Structural studies of EcoRII methylase: exploring similarities among methylases.

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  • 1Biochemistry Department, University of Missouri-Columbia 65211, USA.


EcoRII methyltransferase (M.EcoRII) is a cytosine-C5 DNA methylating enzyme. A model of its three-dimensional structure is proposed on the basis of homology modeling. Crystal structures of two members of the same family of enzymes, HaeIII and HhaI methyltransferases (M.HaeIII and M.HhaI respectively), were used as template molecules. Molecular dynamics was used to ensure sampling of conformationally stable structures. The final model has good geometry. The DNA and cofactor binding residues are in expected positions and form proper interactions. M.EcoRII is 147 amino acids longer than the template molecules, and hence the model contains several loops that are significantly longer than those in M.HaeIII and M.HhaI. The model provides a framework for interpretation and designing site-directed mutants that have a potential to improve crystallization experiments of this enzyme, and possibly other similar enzymes.

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