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Biochemistry. 1998 Jul 21;37(29):10461-8.

Effect of an amino acid insertion into the omega loop region of a class C beta-lactamase on its substrate specificity.

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Division of Microbial Chemistry, Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Chiba University, 1-33, Yayoicho, Inage-ku, Chiba 263, Japan.


The extended-substrate specificity of Enterobacter cloacae GC1 beta-lactamase is entirely due to a three amino acid insertion after position 207. To clarify the reason for the extended-substrate specificity, Ala, Ala-Ala, Ala-Ala-Ala, and Ala-Ala-Ala-Ala were inserted after position 207 on the basis of the class C beta-lactamase from E. cloacae P99, respectively. The kcat and Km values of all the mutant enzymes for cephalothin, benzylpenicillin and ampicillin were almost the same as those of the wild-type enzyme, except for those of P99-210-4A which were decreased 4-15-fold. On the other hand, the kcat and Km values for oxyimino beta-lactams such as cefuroxime, ceftazidime, and aztreonam increased with increasing numbers of inserted alanines. The kcat values of the mutant enzymes for cefroxime increased 140-7400-fold compared with that of the wild-type. The Km values also increased with almost the same magnitude, resulting in about the same kcat/Km values as that of the wild-type. On progressive inhibition analysis of aztreonam of the mutant enzymes, two kinds of inactive acyl-enzyme with distinct stabilities were observed, and the proportion of the less stable inactive enzyme increased with increasing numbers of inserted alanines. This suggests that the extension of the substrate specificity is due to instability of the acyl-intermediate caused by an increased deacylation rate in the reaction process.

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