RG-Leiter: Dr. Scrima

Recent Submissions

  • The N‐terminal peptide of the transglutaminase‐activating metalloprotease inhibitor from Streptomyces mobaraensis accommodates both inhibition and glutamine cross‐linking sites

    Juettner, Norbert E.; Schmelz, Stefan; Anderl, Anita; Colin, Felix; Classen, Moritz; Pfeifer, Felicitas; Scrima, Andrea; Fuchsbauer, Hans‐Lothar; HZI,Helmholtz-Zentrum für Infektionsforschung GmbH, Inhoffenstr. 7,38124 Braunschweig, Germany. (Wiley, 2019-08-29)
    Streptomyces mobaraensis is a key player for the industrial production of the protein cross-linking enzyme microbial transglutaminase (MTG). Extra-cellular activation of MTG by the transglutaminase-activating metalloprotease (TAMP) is regulated by the TAMP inhibitory protein SSTI that belongs to the large Streptomyces subtilisin inhibitor (SSI) family. Despite decades of SSI research, the binding site for metalloproteases such as TAMP remained elusive in most of the SSI proteins. Moreover, SSTI is a MTG substrate, and the preferred glutamine residues for SSTI cross-linking are not determined. To address both issues, that is, determination of the TAMP and the MTG glutamine binding sites, SSTI was modified by distinct point mutations as well as elongation or truncation of the N-terminal peptide by six and three residues respectively. Structural integrity of the mutants was verified by the determination of protein melting points and supported by unimpaired subtilisin inhibitory activity. While exchange of single amino acids could not disrupt decisively the SSTI TAMP interaction, the N-terminally shortened variants clearly indicated the highly conserved Leu40-Tyr41 as binding motif for TAMP. Moreover, enzymatic biotinylation revealed that an adjacent glutamine pair, upstream from Leu40-Tyr41 in the SSTI precursor protein, is the preferred binding site of MTG. This extension peptide disturbs the interaction with TAMP. The structure of SSTI was furthermore determined by X-ray crystallography. While no structural data could be obtained for the N-terminal peptide due to flexibility, the core structure starting from Tyr41 could be determined and analysed, which superposes well with SSI-family proteins. ENZYMES: Chymotrypsin, EC3.4.21.1; griselysin (SGMPII, SgmA), EC3.4.24.27; snapalysin (ScNP), EC3.4.24.77; streptogrisin-A (SGPA), EC3.4.21.80; streptogrisin-B (SGPB), EC3.4.21.81; subtilisin BPN', EC3.4.21.62; transglutaminase, EC2.3.2.13; transglutaminase-activating metalloprotease (TAMP), EC3.4.-.-; tri-/tetrapeptidyl aminopeptidase, EC3.4.11.-; trypsin, EC3.4.21.4. DATABASES: The atomic coordinates and structure factors (PDB 6I0I) have been deposited in the Protein Data Bank (http://www.rcsb.org).
  • The invasin D protein fromYersinia pseudotuberculosisselectively binds the Fab region of host antibodies and affects colonization of the intestine.

    Sadana, Pooja; Geyer, Rebecca; Pezoldt, Joern; Helmsing, Saskia; Huehn, Jochen; Hust, Michael; Dersch, Petra; Scrima, Andrea; Helmholtz-Zentrum für Infektionsforschung GmbH, Inhoffenstr. 7, 38124 Braunschweig, Germany. (2018-03-13)
    Yersinia pseudotuberculosis is a Gram-negative bacterium and zoonotic pathogen responsible for a wide range of diseases, ranging from mild diarrhea, enterocolitis, lymphatic adenitis to persistent local inflammation. TheY. pseudotuberculosisinvasin D (InvD) molecule belongs to the invasin (InvA)-type autotransporter proteins, but its structure and function remain unknown. In this study, we present the first crystal structure of InvD, analyzed its expression and function in a murine infection model, and identified its target molecule in the host. We found that InvD is induced at 37°C and expressed in vivo2-4 days after infection, indicating that InvD is a virulence factor. During infection, InvD was expressed in all parts of the intestinal tract, but not in deeper lymphoid tissues. The crystal structure of the C-terminal adhesion domain of InvD revealed a distinct Ig-related fold, that, apart from the canonical β-sheets, comprises various modifications of and insertions into the Ig-core structure. We identified the Fab fragment of host-derived IgG/IgA antibodies as the target of the adhesion domain. Phage display panning and flow cytometry data further revealed that InvD exhibits a preferential binding specificity toward antibodies with VH3/VK1 variable domains and that it is specifically recruited to a subset of B cells. This finding suggests that InvD modulates Ig functions in the intestine and affects direct interactions with a subset of cell surface-exposed B-cell receptors. In summary, our results provide extensive insights into the structure of InvD and its specific interaction with the target molecule in the host.
  • Structure of the Dispase Autolysis-inducing Protein from Streptomyces mobaraensis and Glutamine Cross-linking Sites for Transglutaminase.

    Fiebig, David; Schmelz, Stefan; Zindel, Stephan; Ehret, Vera; Beck, Jan; Ebenig, Aileen; Ehret, Marina; Fröls, Sabrina; Pfeifer, Felicitas; Kolmar, Harald; et al. (2016)
    Transglutaminase from Streptomyces mobaraensis (MTG) is an important enzyme for cross-linking and modifying proteins. An intrinsic substrate of MTG is the dispase autolysis-inducing protein (DAIP). The amino acid sequence of DAIP contains 5 potential glutamines and 10 lysines for MTG-mediated cross-linking. The aim of the study was to determine the structure and glutamine cross-linking sites of the first physiological MTG substrate. A production procedure was established in Escherichia coli BL21 (DE3) to obtain high yields of recombinant DAIP. DAIP variants were prepared by replacing four of five glutamines for asparagines in various combinations via site-directed mutagenesis. Incorporation of biotin cadaverine revealed a preference of MTG for the DAIP glutamines in the order of Gln-39 ≫ Gln-298 > Gln-345 ∼ Gln-65 ≫ Gln-144. In the structure of DAIP the preferred glutamines do cluster at the top of the seven-bladed β-propeller. This suggests a targeted cross-linking of DAIP by MTG that may occur after self-assembly in the bacterial cell wall. Based on our biochemical and structural data of the first physiological MTG substrate, we further provide novel insight into determinants of MTG-mediated modification, specificity, and efficiency.
  • Identification, biochemical characterization and crystallization of the central region of human ATG16L1.

    Archna, Archna; Scrima, Andrea; Helmholtz-Zentrum für Infektionsforschung GmbH, Inhoffenstr.7, 38124 Braunschweig, Germany. (2017-10-01)
    ATG16L1 plays a major role in autophagy. It acts as a molecular scaffold which mediates protein-protein interactions essential for autophagosome formation. The ATG12~ATG5-ATG16L1 complex is one of the key complexes involved in autophagosome formation. Human ATG16L1 comprises 607 amino acids with three functional domains named ATG5BD, CCD and WD40, where the C-terminal WD40 domain represents approximately 50% of the full-length protein. Previously, structures of the C-terminal WD40 domain of human ATG16L1 as well as of human ATG12~ATG5 in complex with the ATG5BD of ATG16L1 have been reported. However, apart from the ATG5BD, no structural information for the N-terminal half, including the CCD, of human ATG16L1 is available. In this study, the authors aimed to structurally characterize the N-terminal half of ATG16L1. ATG16L111-307 in complex with ATG5 has been purified and crystallized in two crystal forms. However, both crystal structures revealed degradation of ATG16L1, resulting in crystals comprising only full-length ATG5 and the ATG5BD of ATG16L1. The structures of ATG5-ATG5BD in two novel crystal forms are presented, further supporting the previously observed dimerization of ATG5-ATG16L1. The reported degradation points towards a high instability at the linker region between the ATG5BD and the CCD in ATG16L1. Based on this observation and further biochemical analysis of ATG16L1, a stable 236-amino-acid subfragment comprising residues 72-307 of the N-terminal half of ATG16L1, covering the residual, so far structurally uncharacterized region of human ATG16L1, was identified. Here, the identification, purification, biochemical characterization and crystallization of the proteolytically stable ATG16L172-307 subfragment are reported.
  • UL36 Rescues Apoptosis Inhibition and In vivo Replication of a Chimeric MCMV Lacking the M36 Gene.

    Chaudhry, M Zeeshan; Kasmapour, Bahram; Plaza-Sirvent, Carlos; Bajagic, Milica; Casalegno Garduño, Rosaely; Borkner, Lisa; Lenac Roviš, Tihana; Scrima, Andrea; Jonjic, Stipan; Schmitz, Ingo; et al. (2017)
    Apoptosis is an important defense mechanism mounted by the immune system to control virus replication. Hence, cytomegaloviruses (CMV) evolved and acquired numerous anti-apoptotic genes. The product of the human CMV (HCMV) UL36 gene, pUL36 (also known as vICA), binds to pro-caspase-8, thus inhibiting death-receptor apoptosis and enabling viral replication in differentiated THP-1 cells. In vivo studies of the function of HCMV genes are severely limited due to the strict host specificity of cytomegaloviruses, but CMV orthologues that co-evolved with other species allow the experimental study of CMV biology in vivo. The mouse CMV (MCMV) homolog of the UL36 gene is called M36, and its protein product (pM36) is a functional homolog of vICA that binds to murine caspase-8 and inhibits its activation. M36-deficient MCMV is severely growth impaired in macrophages and in vivo. Here we show that pUL36 binds to the murine pro-caspase-8, and that UL36 expression inhibits death-receptor apoptosis in murine cells and can replace M36 to allow MCMV growth in vitro and in vivo. We generated a chimeric MCMV expressing the UL36 ORF sequence instead of the M36 one. The newly generated MCMV(UL36) inhibited apoptosis in macrophage lines RAW 264.7, J774A.1, and IC-21 and its growth was rescued to wild type levels. Similarly, growth was rescued in vivo in the liver and spleen, but only partially in the salivary glands of BALB/c and C57BL/6 mice. In conclusion, we determined that an immune-evasive HCMV gene is conserved enough to functionally replace its MCMV counterpart and thus allow its study in an in vivo setting. As UL36 and M36 proteins engage the same molecular host target, our newly developed model can facilitate studies of anti-viral compounds targeting pUL36 in vivo.
  • The AibR-isovaleryl coenzyme A regulator and its DNA binding site - a model for the regulation of alternative de novo isovaleryl coenzyme A biosynthesis in Myxococcus xanthus.

    Bock, Tobias; Volz, Carsten; Hering, Vanessa; Scrima, Andrea; Müller, Rolf; Blankenfeldt, Wulf; Hel,holtz Centre for infection research, Inhoffenstr. 7, 38124 Braunschweig, Germany. (2016-12-09)
    Isovaleryl coenzyme A (IV-CoA) is an important building block of iso-fatty acids. In myxobacteria, IV-CoA is essential for the formation of signaling molecules involved in fruiting body formation. Leucine degradation is the common source of IV-CoA, but a second, de novo biosynthetic route to IV-CoA termed AIB (alternative IV-CoA biosynthesis) was recently discovered in M. xanthus The AIB-operon contains the TetR-like transcriptional regulator AibR, which we characterize in this study. We demonstrate that IV-CoA binds AibR with micromolar affinity and show by gelshift experiments that AibR interacts with the promoter region of the AIB-operon once IV-CoA is present. We identify an 18-bp near-perfect palindromic repeat as containing the AibR operator and provide evidence that AibR also controls an additional genomic locus coding for a putative acetyl-CoA acetyltransferase. To elucidate atomic details, we determined crystal structures of AibR in the apo, the IV-CoA- and the IV-CoA-DNA-bound state to 1.7 Å, 2.35 Å and 2.92 Å, respectively. IV-CoA induces partial unfolding of an α-helix, which allows sequence-specific interactions between AibR and its operator. This study provides insights into AibR-mediated regulation and shows that AibR functions in an unusual TetR-like manner by blocking transcription not in the ligand-free but in the effector-bound state.
  • The internal initiation of translation in bovine viral diarrhea virus RNA depends on the presence of an RNA pseudoknot upstream of the initiation codon.

    Moes, Lorin; Wirth, Manfred (2007-11-22)
    Bovine viral diarrhea virus (BVDV) is the prototype representative of the pestivirus genus in the Flaviviridae family. It has been shown that the initiation of translation of BVDV RNA occurs by an internal ribosome entry mechanism mediated by the 5' untranslated region of the viral RNA 1. The 5' and 3' boundaries of the IRES of the cytopathic BVDV NADL have been mapped and it has been suggested that the IRES extends into the coding of the BVDV polyprotein 2. A putative pseudoknot structure has been recognized in the BVDV 5'UTR in close proximity to the AUG start codon. A pseudoknot structure is characteristic for flavivirus IRESes and in the case of the closely related classical swine fever virus (CSFV) and the more distantly related Hepatitis C virus (HCV) pseudoknot function in translation has been demonstrated.
  • Arranged sevenfold: structural insights into the C-terminal oligomerization domain of human C4b-binding protein.

    Hofmeyer, Thomas; Schmelz, Stefan; Degiacomi, Matteo T; Dal Peraro, Matteo; Daneschdar, Matin; Scrima, Andrea; van den Heuvel, Joop; Heinz, Dirk W; Kolmar, Harald; Institute for Organic Chemistry and Biochemistry, Technische Universität Darmstadt, Petersenstraße 22, 64287 Darmstadt, Germany. (2013-04-26)
    The complement system as a major part of innate immunity is the first line of defense against invading microorganisms. Orchestrated by more than 60 proteins, its major task is to discriminate between host cells and pathogens and to initiate immune response. Additional recognition of necrotic or apoptotic cells demands a fine-tune regulation of this powerful system. C4b-binding protein (C4BP) is the major inhibitor of the classical complement and lectin pathway. The crystal structure of the human C4BP oligomerization domain in its 7α isoform and molecular simulations provide first structural insights of C4BP oligomerization. The heptameric core structure is stabilized by intermolecular disulfide bonds. In addition, thermal shift assays indicate that layers of electrostatic interactions mainly contribute to the extraordinary thermodynamic stability of the complex. These findings make C4BP a promising scaffold for multivalent ligand display with applications in immunology and biological chemistry.