3UJ7: Phosphoethanolamine Methyltransferase From Plasmodium Falciparum In Complex With Sam And Po4

In the malarial parasite Plasmodium falciparum, a multifunctional phosphoethanolamine methyltransferase (PfPMT) catalyzes the methylation of phosphoethanolamine (pEA) to phosphocholine for membrane biogenesis. This pathway is also found in plant and nematodes, but PMT from these organisms use multiple methyltransferase domains for the S-adenosylmethionine (AdoMet) reactions. Because PfPMT is essential for normal growth and survival of Plasmodium and is not found in humans, it is an antiparasitic target. Here we describe the 1.55 A resolution crystal structure of PfPMT in complex with AdoMet by single-wavelength anomalous dispersion phasing. In addition, 1.19-1.52 A resolution structures of PfPMT with pEA (substrate), phosphocholine (product), sinefungin (inhibitor), and both pEA and S-adenosylhomocysteine bound were determined. These structures suggest that domain rearrangements occur upon ligand binding and provide insight on active site architecture defining the AdoMet and phosphobase binding sites. Functional characterization of 27 site-directed mutants identifies critical active site residues and suggests that Tyr-19 and His-132 form a catalytic dyad. Kinetic analysis, isothermal titration calorimetry, and protein crystallography of the Y19F and H132A mutants suggest a reaction mechanism for the PMT. Not only are Tyr-19 and His-132 required for phosphobase methylation, but they also form a "catalytic" latch that locks ligands in the active site and orders the site for catalysis. This study provides the first insight on this antiparasitic target enzyme essential for survival of the malaria parasite; however, further studies of the multidomain PMT from plants and nematodes are needed to understand the evolutionary division of metabolic function in the phosphobase pathway of these organisms.
PDB ID: 3UJ7Download
MMDB ID: 95641
PDB Deposition Date: 2011/11/7
Updated in MMDB: 2011/12
Experimental Method:
x-ray diffraction
Resolution: 1.55  Å
Source Organism:
Similar Structures:
Biological Unit for 3UJ7: monomeric; determined by author and by software (PISA)
Molecular Components in 3UJ7
Label Count Molecule
Protein (1 molecule)
Phosphoethanolamine N-methyltransferase
Molecule annotation
Chemicals (2 molecules)
* Click molecule labels to explore molecular sequence information.

Citing MMDB