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Biochemistry. 1994 Aug 23;33(33):10120-6.

Escherichia coli glycerol kinase: role of a tetramer interface in regulation by fructose 1,6-bisphosphate and phosphotransferase system regulatory protein IIIglc.

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Department of Biochemistry & Biophysics, Texas A&M University, College Station 77843-2128.


Escherichia coli glycerol kinase (EC; ATP:glycerol 3-phosphotransferase) is a key element in a signal transduction pathway that couples expression of genes required for glycerol metabolism to the relative availability of glycerol and glucose. Its catalytic activity is inhibited by protein-protein interactions with IIIglc, a phosphotransferase system protein, and by fructose 1,6-bisphosphate (FBP); each of these allosteric effectors constitutes a positive signal that glucose is available. Loss of glucose inhibition of glycerol metabolism was used to screen for regulatory mutants of glycerol kinase after hydroxylamine mutagenesis of the cloned glpK gene. Two mutant enzymes were identified and shown by DNA sequencing to contain the mutations alanine 65 to threonine (A65T) and aspartate 72 to asparagine (D72N). Initial velocity studies show the mutations do not significantly affect the catalytic properties, hence active-site structures, of the enzymes. Both mutations decrease inhibition by FBP; A65T eliminates the inhibition while D72N appears to decrease the affinity for FBP and the extent of the inhibition. However, neither mutation significantly affects inhibition by IIIglc. Gel-permeation chromatography studies show that both of the mutations alter the dimer-tetramer assembly reaction of the enzyme and the effect of FBP in increasing the molecular weight. The effects of the mutations on the assembly reaction are consistent with the locations of these two amino acid residues in the X-ray structure, which shows them to be associated with an alpha-helix that constitutes one of the two subunit-subunit interfaces within the tetramer.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS).

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