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J Mol Biol. 2013 Jun 12;425(11):1961-81. doi: 10.1016/j.jmb.2013.02.017. Epub 2013 Feb 20.

Structural and functional studies of γ-carboxyglutamic acid domains of factor VIIa and activated Protein C: role of magnesium at physiological calcium.

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UCLA/Orthopaedic Hospital Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, University of California, Los Angeles, CA 90095, USA.


Crystal structures of factor (F) VIIa/soluble tissue factor (TF), obtained under high Mg(2+) (50mM Mg(2+)/5mM Ca(2+)), have three of seven Ca(2+) sites in the γ-carboxyglutamic acid (Gla) domain replaced by Mg(2+) at positions 1, 4, and 7. We now report structures under low Mg(2+) (2.5mM Mg(2+)/5mM Ca(2+)) as well as under high Ca(2+) (5mM Mg(2+)/45 mM Ca(2+)). Under low Mg(2+), four Ca(2+) and three Mg(2+) occupy the same positions as in high-Mg(2+) structures. Conversely, under low Mg(2+), reexamination of the structure of Gla domain of activated Protein C (APC) complexed with soluble endothelial Protein C receptor (sEPCR) has position 4 occupied by Ca(2+) and positions 1 and 7 by Mg(2+). Nonetheless, in direct binding experiments, Mg(2+) replaced three Ca(2+) sites in the unliganded Protein C or APC. Further, the high-Ca(2+) condition was necessary to replace Mg4 in the FVIIa/soluble TF structure. In biological studies, Mg(2+) enhanced phospholipid binding to FVIIa and APC at physiological Ca(2+). Additionally, Mg(2+) potentiated phospholipid-dependent activations of FIX and FX by FVIIa/TF and inactivation of activated factor V by APC. Since APC and FVIIa bind to sEPCR involving similar interactions, we conclude that under the low-Mg(2+) condition, sEPCR binding to APC-Gla (or FVIIa-Gla) replaces Mg4 by Ca4 with an attendant conformational change in the Gla domain ω-loop. Moreover, since phospholipid and sEPCR bind to FVIIa or APC via the ω-loop, we predict that phospholipid binding also induces the functional Ca4 conformation in this loop. Cumulatively, the data illustrate that Mg(2+) and Ca(2+) act in concert to promote coagulation and anticoagulation.

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