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Biochemistry. 2003 May 13;42(18):5333-40.

Thermodynamic characterization of the binding of nucleotides to glycyl-tRNA synthetase.

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Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Medical College of Ohio, 3035 Arlington Avenue, Toledo, Ohio 43614-5804, USA.


The interaction of adenine nucleotides with glycyl-tRNA synthetase was examined by several experimental approaches. ATP and nonsubstrate ATP analogues render glycyl-tRNA synthetase more resistant to digestion by a number of proteases (thrombin, Arg-C, and chymotrypsin) at concentrations that correlate with their Michaelis constants or inhibition constants, consistent with their exerting an effect by binding at the ATP site. Glycine had little effect alone but potentiated the effect of ATP in increasing the resistance to thrombin digestion, consistent with the formation of an enzyme-bound adenylate. No protection from thrombin digestion was afforded by tRNA(gly). Binding constants were determined by isothermal titration calorimetry at 25 degrees C for ATP (2.5 x 10(5) M(-1)), AMPPNP (3.7 x 10(5) M(-1)), and AMPPCP (2.2 x 10(6) M(-1)). The nucleotides had similar values for DeltaH (-71 kJ mol(-1)), with values for TDeltaS that accounted for the differences in the binding constants. Near-ultraviolet CD spectra of the enzyme-nucleotide complexes indicate that the nucleotides are bound in the anti configuration. A glycyl-adenylate analogue, glycine sulfamoyl adenosine (GSAd), bound with a large value for DeltaH (-187 kJ mol(-1)), which was balanced by a large TDeltaS term to give a binding constant (3.7 x 10(6) M(-1)) only slightly larger than that of AMPPCP. Glycine binding to the enzyme could not be detected calorimetrically, and its presence did not change the thermodynamic parameters for binding of AMPPCP. AMPPNP and AMPPCP were not substrates for glycyl-tRNA synthetase. Analysis of the temperature dependence of ATP binding indicated that the heat capacity change is small, whereas the binding of GSAd is accompanied by a large negative heat capacity change (-2.6 kJ K(-1) mol(-1)). Titrations performed in buffers with different ionization enthalpies indicate that the large value for DeltaH for the adenylate analogue does not arise from a coupled protonation event. Differential scanning calorimetry indicated that glycyl-tRNA synthetase is stabilized by nucleotides. Unfolding of the protein is irreversible, and thermodynamic parameters for unfolding could therefore not be determined. The results are consistent with a significant conformational transition in glycyl-tRNA synthetase coupled to the binding of GSAd.

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