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Analysis of Acyl Carrier Protein in the cyanobacterium Synechocystis sp. PCC 6803

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Acyl Carrier Protein (ACP) is a small, acidic protein that plays an essential role in fatty acid synthesis by elongating fatty acid chains. ACP was isolated from an extract of

Acyl Carrier Protein (ACP) is a small, acidic protein that plays an essential role in fatty acid synthesis by elongating fatty acid chains. ACP was isolated from an extract of a modified strain of Synechocystis sp. PCC 6803 that contains a thioesterase and from which the acyl-ACP synthetase has been deleted. Using ammonium sulfate precipitation to isolate a crude protein fraction containing ACP, immunoblot analysis was performed to determine relative amounts of free and acylated-ACP in the cell. The nature of fatty acids attached to ACP was determined by creating butylamide derivatives that were analyzed using GC/MS. Immunoblot analysis showed a roughly 1:1 ratio of acylated ACP to free ACP in the cell depending on the nutritional state of the cell. From GC/MS data it was determined that palmitic acid was the predominate component of acyl groups attached to ACP. The results indicate that there is a significant amount of acyl-ACP, a feedback inhibitor of early steps in the fatty acid biosynthesis pathway, in the cell. Moreover, the availability of free ACP may also limit fatty acid biosynthesis. Most likely it is necessary for ACP to be overexpressed or to have the palmitic acid cleaved off in order to synthesize optimal amounts of lauric acid to be used for cyanobacterial biofuel production.

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Date Created
  • 2016-05

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Glycan-cyanovirin-N interactions and designed WW domains: combining experimental and computational studies

Description

Cyanovirin-N (CVN) is a cyanobacterial lectin with potent anti-HIV activity, mediated by binding to the N-linked oligosaccharide moiety of the envelope protein gp120. CVN offers a scaffold to develop multivalent

Cyanovirin-N (CVN) is a cyanobacterial lectin with potent anti-HIV activity, mediated by binding to the N-linked oligosaccharide moiety of the envelope protein gp120. CVN offers a scaffold to develop multivalent carbohydrate-binding proteins with tunable specificities and affinities. I present here biophysical calculations completed on a monomeric-stabilized mutant of cyanovirin-N, P51G-m4-CVN, in which domain A binding activity is abolished by four mutations; with comparisons made to CVNmutDB, in which domain B binding activity is abolished. Using Monte Carlo calculations and docking simulations, mutations in CVNmutDB were considered singularly, and the mutations E41A/G and T57A were found to impact the affinity towards dimannose the greatest. 15N-labeled proteins were titrated with Manα(1-2)Manα, while following chemical shift perturbations in NMR spectra. The mutants, E41A/G and T57A, had a larger Kd than P51G-m4-CVN, matching the trends predicted by the calculations. We also observed that the N42A mutation affects the local fold of the binding pocket, thus removing all binding to dimannose. Characterization of the mutant N53S showed similar binding affinity to P51G-m4-CVN. Using biophysical calculations allows us to study future iterations of models to explore affinities and specificities. In order to further elucidate the role of multivalency, I report here a designed covalent dimer of CVN, Nested cyanovirin-N (Nested CVN), which has four binding sites. Nested CVN was found to have comparable binding affinity to gp120 and antiviral activity to wt CVN. These results demonstrate the ability to create a multivalent, covalent dimer that has comparable results to that of wt CVN.

WW domains are small modules consisting of 32-40 amino acids that recognize proline-rich peptides and are found in many signaling pathways. We use WW domain sequences to explore protein folding by simulations using Zipping and Assembly Method. We identified five crucial contacts that enabled us to predict the folding of WW domain sequences based on those contacts. We then designed a folded WW domain peptide from an unfolded WW domain sequence by introducing native contacts at those critical positions.

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Date Created
  • 2014