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Biochemistry. 2007 Dec 4;46(48):13696-703. Epub 2007 Nov 7.

Magic-angle spinning solid-state NMR spectroscopy of nanodisc-embedded human CYP3A4.

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Center for Biophysics and Computational Biology, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Urbana, Illinois 618001, USA.


Cytochrome P450 (CYP) 3A4 contributes to the metabolism of approximately 50% of commercial drugs by oxidizing a large number of structurally diverse substrates. Like other endoplasmic reticulum-localized P450s, CYP3A4 contains a membrane-anchoring N-terminal helix and a significant number of hydrophobic domains, important for the interaction between CYP3A4 and the membrane. Although the membrane affects specificity of CYP3A4 ligand binding, the structural details of the interaction have not been revealed so far because X-ray crystallography studies are available only for the soluble domain of CYP3A4. Here we report sample preparation and initial magic-angle spinning (MAS) solid-state NMR (SSNMR) of CYP3A4 (Delta3-12) embedded in a nanoscale membrane bilayer, or Nanodisc. The growth protocol yields approximately 2.5 mg of the enzymatically active, uniformly 13C,15N-enriched CYP3A4 from 1 L of growth medium. Polyethylene glycol 3350-precipitated CYP3A4 in Nanodiscs yields spectra of high resolution and sensitivity, consistent with a folded, homogeneous protein. CYP3A4 in Nanodiscs remains enzymatically active throughout the precipitation protocol as monitored by bromocriptine binding. The 13C line widths measured from 13C-13C 2D chemical shift correlation spectra are approximately 0.5 ppm. The secondary structure distribution within several amino acid types determined from 13C chemical shifts is consistent with the ligand-free X-ray structures. These results demonstrate that MAS SSNMR can be performed on Nanodisc-embedded membrane proteins in a folded, active state. The combination of SSNMR and Nanodisc methodologies opens up new possibilities for obtaining structural information on CYP3A4 and other integral membrane proteins with full retention of functionality.

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