11 research outputs found

    Gated rotation mechanism of site-specific recombination by ϕC31 integrase

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    Integrases, such as that of the Streptomyces temperate bacteriophage ϕC31, promote site-specific recombination between DNA sequences in the bacteriophage and bacterial genomes to integrate or excise the phage DNA. ϕC31 integrase belongs to the serine recombinase family, a large group of structurally related enzymes with diverse biological functions. It has been proposed that serine integrases use a “subunit rotation” mechanism to exchange DNA strands after double-strand DNA cleavage at the two recombining att sites, and that many rounds of subunit rotation can occur before the strands are religated. We have analyzed the mechanism of ϕC31 integrase-mediated recombination in a topologically constrained experimental system using hybrid “phes” recombination sites, each of which comprises a ϕC31 att site positioned adjacent to a regulatory sequence recognized by Tn3 resolvase. The topologies of reaction products from circular substrates containing two phes sites support a right-handed subunit rotation mechanism for catalysis of both integrative and excisive recombination. Strand exchange usually terminates after a single round of 180° rotation. However, multiple processive “360° rotation” rounds of strand exchange can be observed, if the recombining sites have nonidentical base pairs at their centers. We propose that a regulatory “gating” mechanism normally blocks multiple rounds of strand exchange and triggers product release after a single round

    Zinc Finger Recombinases with Adaptable DNA Sequence Specificity

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    Site-specific recombinases have become essential tools in genetics and molecular biology for the precise excision or integration of DNA sequences. However, their utility is currently limited to circumstances where the sites recognized by the recombinase enzyme have been introduced into the DNA being manipulated, or natural ‘pseudosites’ are already present. Many new applications would become feasible if recombinase activity could be targeted to chosen sequences in natural genomic DNA. Here we demonstrate efficient site-specific recombination at several sequences taken from a 1.9 kilobasepair locus of biotechnological interest (in the bovine β-casein gene), mediated by zinc finger recombinases (ZFRs), chimaeric enzymes with linked zinc finger (DNA recognition) and recombinase (catalytic) domains. In the "Z-sites" tested here, 22 bp casein gene sequences are flanked by 9 bp motifs recognized by zinc finger domains. Asymmetric Z-sites were recombined by the concomitant action of two ZFRs with different zinc finger DNA-binding specificities, and could be recombined with a heterologous site in the presence of a third recombinase. Our results show that engineered ZFRs may be designed to promote site-specific recombination at many natural DNA sequences

    Regulatory effect of divalent cations on rat liver alkaline phosphatase activity: How Mg2+ activates (and inhibits) the hydrolysis of p-nitrophenylphosphate

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    The concentration-dependent stimulation of rat liver alkaline phosphatase (ALP) catalyzed hydrolysis of para- nitrophenylphosphate (pNPP) was studied. ALP displayed some activity even in the absence of exogenous Mg2+. Kinetic analyses show that activation by Mg2+ is exerted at the Vmax level without necessarily enhancing the affinity of the enzyme for the ion. However, the hyperbolic activation operates only within the optimal level of 0 to 5mM concentrations of the metal ion. Higher concentrations were actually inhibitory in a pure non-competitive manner. Mg2+, either as an activator (optimal concentrations) or inhibitor (supra-optimal levels) exerts its action via a Vmax effect with only negligible effect on Km for the substrate. Keywords: magnesium ion, alkaline phosphatase, supra optimal regulation Biokemistri Vol. 17(2) 2005: 129-13

    Synapsis and catalysis by activated Tn3 resolvase mutants

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    The serine recombinase Tn3 resolvase catalyses recombination between two 114 bp res sites, each of which contains binding sites for three resolvase dimers. We have analysed the in vitro properties of resolvase variants with ‘activating’ mutations, which can catalyse recombination at binding site I of res when the rest of res is absent. Site I × site I recombination promoted by these variants can be as fast as res × res recombination promoted by wild-type resolvase. Activated variants have reduced topological selectivity and no longer require the 2–3′ interface between subunits that is essential for wild-type resolvase-mediated recombination. They also promote formation of a stable synapse comprising a resolvase tetramer and two copies of site I. Cleavage of the DNA strands by the activated mutants is slow relative to the rate of synapsis. Stable resolvase tetramers were not detected in the absence of DNA or bound to a single site I. Our results lead us to conclude that the synapse is assembled by sequential binding of resolvase monomers to site I followed by interaction of two site I-dimer complexes. We discuss the implications of our results for the mechanisms of synapsis and regulation in recombination by wild-type resolvase