• Biology of archaea from a novel family Cuniculiplasmataceae (Thermoplasmata) ubiquitous in hyperacidic environments.

      Golyshina, Olga V; Kublanov, Ilya V; Tran, Hai; Korzhenkov, Alexei A; Lünsdorf, Heinrich; Nechitaylo, Taras Y; Gavrilov, Sergey N; Toshchakov, Stepan V; Golyshin, Peter N; Helmholtz Centre for infection research, Inhoffenstr. 7, 38124 Braunschweig, Germany. (2016-12-14)
      The order Thermoplasmatales (Euryarchaeota) is represented by the most acidophilic organisms known so far that are poorly amenable to cultivation. Earlier culture-independent studies in Iron Mountain (California) pointed at an abundant archaeal group, dubbed 'G-plasma'. We examined the genomes and physiology of two cultured representatives of a Family Cuniculiplasmataceae, recently isolated from acidic (pH 1-1.5) sites in Spain and UK that are 16S rRNA gene sequence-identical with 'G-plasma'. Organisms had largest genomes among Thermoplasmatales (1.87-1.94 Mbp), that shared 98.7-98.8% average nucleotide identities between themselves and 'G-plasma' and exhibited a high genome conservation even within their genomic islands, despite their remote geographical localisations. Facultatively anaerobic heterotrophs, they possess an ancestral form of A-type terminal oxygen reductase from a distinct parental clade. The lack of complete pathways for biosynthesis of histidine, valine, leucine, isoleucine, lysine and proline pre-determines the reliance on external sources of amino acids and hence the lifestyle of these organisms as scavengers of proteinaceous compounds from surrounding microbial community members. In contrast to earlier metagenomics-based assumptions, isolates were S-layer-deficient, non-motile, non-methylotrophic and devoid of iron-oxidation despite the abundance of methylotrophy substrates and ferrous iron in situ, which underlines the essentiality of experimental validation of bioinformatic predictions.
    • Lysozyme and bilirubin bind to ACE and regulate its conformation and shedding.

      Danilov, Sergei M; Lünsdorf, Heinrich; Akinbi, Henry T; Nesterovitch, Andrew B; Epshtein, Yuliya; Letsiou, Eleftheria; Kryukova, Olga V; Piegeler, Tobias; Golukhova, Elena Z; Schwartz, David E; et al. (2016-10-13)
      Angiotensin I-converting enzyme (ACE) hydrolyzes numerous peptides and is a critical participant in blood pressure regulation and vascular remodeling. Elevated tissue ACE levels are associated with increased risk for cardiovascular and respiratory disorders. Blood ACE concentrations are determined by proteolytic cleavage of ACE from the endothelial cell surface, a process that remains incompletely understood. In this study, we identified a novel ACE gene mutation (Arg532Trp substitution in the N domain of somatic ACE) that increases blood ACE activity 7-fold and interrogated the mechanism by which this mutation significantly increases blood ACE levels. We hypothesized that this ACE mutation disrupts the binding site for blood components which may stabilize ACE conformation and diminish ACE shedding. We identified the ACE-binding protein in the blood as lysozyme and also a Low Molecular Weight (LMW) ACE effector, bilirubin, which act in concert to regulate ACE conformation and thereby influence ACE shedding. These results provide mechanistic insight into the elevated blood level of ACE observed in patients on ACE inhibitor therapy and elevated blood lysozyme and ACE levels in sarcoidosis patients.