National Center for
4M7V: Dihydrofolate Reductase From Enterococcus Faecalis Complexed With Nadp(h)and Rab-propyl
The Structure and Competitive Substrate Inhibition of Dihydrofolate Reductase from Enterococcus faecalis Reveal Restrictions to Cofactor Docking
Biochemistry (2014) 53 p.1228-1238
We are addressing bacterial resistance to antibiotics by repurposing a well-established classic antimicrobial target, the dihydrofolate reductase (DHFR) enzyme. In this work, we have focused on Enterococcus faecalis, a nosocomial pathogen that frequently harbors antibiotic resistance determinants leading to complicated and difficult-to-treat infections. An inhibitor series with a hydrophobic dihydrophthalazine heterocycle was designed from the anti-folate trimethoprim. We have examined the potency of this inhibitor series based on inhibition of DHFR enzyme activity and bacterial growth, including in the presence of the exogenous product analogue folinic acid. The resulting preferences were rationalized using a cocrystal structure of the DHFR from this organism with a propyl-bearing series member (RAB-propyl). In a companion apo structure, we identify four buried waters that act as placeholders for a conserved hydrogen-bonding network to the substrate and indicate an important role in protein stability during catalytic cycling. In these structures, the nicotinamide of the nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide phosphate cofactor is visualized outside of its binding pocket, which is exacerbated by RAB-propyl binding. Finally, homology models of the TMP(R) sequences dfrK and dfrF were constructed. While the dfrK-encoded protein shows clear sequence changes that would be detrimental to inhibitor binding, the dfrF-encoded protein model suggests the protein would be relatively unstable. These data suggest a utility for anti-DHFR compounds for treating infections arising from E. faecalis. They also highlight a role for water in stabilizing the DHFR substrate pocket and for competitive substrate inhibitors that may gain advantages in potency by the perturbation of cofactor dynamics.