Some details of the reaction mechanism of glucoamylase from Aspergillus niger--kinetic and structural studies on Trp52-->Phe and Trp317-->Phe mutants

Trine Christensen, Bjarne B. Stoffer, Birte Svensson, Ulla Christensen

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Presteady and steady-state kinetic results on the interactions of a wild-type, and the mutant glucoamylases Trp52-->Phe and Trp317-->Phe, from Aspergillus niger with maltose, maltotriose and maltotetraose have been obtained and analyzed. The results are compared with previous ones on the mutants, Trp120-->Phe and Glu180-->Gln, and with results obtained from structure energy minimization calculations based on known three-dimensional structural data. All results are in accordance with a three-step reaction model involving two steps in the substrate binding and a rate-determining catalytic step. Trp317 and Glu180 belong to different subsites, but are placed on the same flank of the active site (beta-flank). The Trp317-->Phe and the Glu180-->Gln mutants show almost identical kinetic results: weakening of the substrate binding, mainly caused by changes in the second reaction step, and practically no change of the catalytic rate. Structure energy minimization calculations show that the same loss of Arg305 and Glu180 hydrogen bonds to the substrate occurs in the Michaelis complexes of each of these mutants. These results indicate that important interactions of the active site may be better understood from a consideration of its flanks rather than of its subsites. The results further indicate differences in the substrate binding mode of maltose and of longer substrates. Trp52 and Trp120 each interact with the catalytic acid, Glu179, and are placed on the flank (alpha-flank) of the active site opposite to Trp317, Arg305 and Glu180. Also the Trp52-->Phe and Trp120-->Phe mutants show kinetic results similar to each other. The catalytic rates are strongly reduced and the substrates are bound more strongly, mainly as a result of the formation of a more stable complex in the second reaction step. All together, the substrate binding mechanism seems to involve an initial enzyme-substrate complex, in which the beta-flank plays a minor role, except for maltose binding; this is followed by a conformational change, in which hydrogen bonds to Arg305 and Glu180 of the beta-flank are established and the correct alignment on the alpha-flank of Glu179, the general acid catalyst, governed by its flexible interactions with Trp52 and Trp120, occurs.
Original languageEnglish
JournalEuropean Journal of Biochemistry
Pages (from-to)638-645
Publication statusPublished - 1997
Externally publishedYes

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