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O-Acetylserine Sulhydralase-A from Salmonella typhimurium LT-2: Thermodynamic Properties and SPectral Identification of Intermediates

Description: O-Acetylserine Sulfhydrylase (OASS) is a pyridoxal phosphate enzyme that catalyzes the reaction of O-acetyl-Lserine with sulfide to give L-cysteine. OASS is present as two isoforms, designated -A and -B. The kinetic mechanism of OASS-A is well known and there is also much known concerning the acid-base chemistry of the enzyme. However, little is known concerning the location of the rate determining steps, the sequencing of chemical steps that occur at the active site, or the nature of the rate determining transition states. The studies performed to help elucidate these aspects of the OASS-A mechanism included determination of the thermodynamics of both half reactions, along with studies utilizing substrate analogs of OAS halting the reaction at specific points along the reaction pathway allowing the identification of reaction intermediates. The free energy change of the first half reaction was shown to be -5.7 Kcal/mole while the second half reaction was shown to be, for all intents and purposes, irreversible. Intermediates along the reaction pathway that have been previously identified include the internal Schiff base and the a-aminoacrylate. The external Schiff base was identified using the analogs cysteine, alanine, and glycine while the geminal diamine was identified using the analog serine. Formation of the external aldimine was shown to be pH dependent with a pK of 8.1 ± 0.3 most likely representing a general base that accepts a proton from the a-amine of cysteine to facilitate a nucleophilic attack on C4r of the PLP imine. Formation of the geminal diamine was also shown to be pH dependent with two pK values having an average value of 8.1. One of the groups most likely represents the general base which accepts a proton from the a-amine of cysteine while the second group likely interacts with the amino acid side chain to orientate the amino acid ...
Date: August 1993
Creator: Simmons, James Walter
Partner: UNT Libraries

N-Acylethanolamine Metabolism During Seed Germination: Molecular Identification of a Functional N-Acylethanolamine Amidohydrolase

Description: N-Acylethanolamines (NAEs) are endogenous lipid metabolites that occur in a variety of dry seeds, and their levels decline rapidly during the first few hours of imbibition (Chapman et al., 1999, Plant Physiol., 120:1157-1164). Biochemical studies supported the existence of an NAE amidohydrolase activity in seeds and seedlings, and efforts were directed toward identification of DNA sequences encoding this enzyme. Mammalian tissues metabolize NAEs via an amidase enzyme designated fatty acid amide hydrolase (FAAH). Based on the characteristic amidase signature sequence in mammalian FAAH, a candidate Arabidopsis cDNA was identified and isolated by reverse transcriptase-PCR. The Arabidopsis cDNA was expressed in E. coli and the recombinant protein indeed hydrolyzed a range of NAEs to free fatty acids and ethanolamine. Kinetic parameters for the recombinant protein were consistent with those properties of the rat FAAH, supporting identification of this Arabidopsis cDNA as a FAAH homologue. Two T-DNA insertional mutant lines with disruptions in the Arabidopsis NAE amidohydrolase gene (At5g64440) were identified. The homozygous mutant seedlings were more sensitive than the wild type to exogenously applied NAE 12:0. Transgenic seedlings overexpressing the NAE amidohydrolase enzyme showed noticeably greater tolerance to NAE 12:0 than wild type seedlings. These results together provide evidence in vitro and in vivo for the molecular identification of Arabidopsis NAE amidohydrolase. Moreover, the plants with altered NAE amidohydrolase expression may provide new tools for improved understanding of the role of NAEs in germination and seedling growth.
Date: August 2004
Creator: Shrestha, Rhidaya
Partner: UNT Libraries

N-Acylethanolamine (NAE) Profiles Change During Arabidopsis Thaliana Seed Germination and Seedling Growth

Description: An understanding of the potential roles as lipid mediators of a family of bioactive metabolites called N-acylethanolamines (NAEs) depends on their accurate identification and quantification. The levels of 18C unsaturated NAEs (e.g. NAE18:2, NAE 18:3, etc.) in wild-type seeds (about 2000 ng/g fw) generally decreased by about 80% during germination and post-germinative growth. In addition, results suggest NAE-degradative fatty acid amide hydrolase (FAAH) expression does not play a major role in normal NAE metabolism as previously thought. Seedlings germinated and grown in the presence of abscisic acid (ABA), an endogenous plant hormone, exhibited growth arrest and secondary dormancy, similar to the treatment of seedlings with exogenous N­lauroylethanolamine (NAE12:0). ABA-mediated growth arrest was associated with higher levels of unsaturated NAEs. Overall, these results are consistent with the concept that NAE metabolism is activated during seed germination and suggest that the reduction in unsaturated NAE levels is under strict temporal control and may be a requirement for normal seed germination and post-germinative growth.
Date: August 2006
Creator: Wiant, William C.
Partner: UNT Libraries

N-Acylethanolamines and Plant Phospholipase D

Description: Recently, three distinct isoforms of phospholipase D (PLD) were identified in Arabidopsis thaliana. PLD α represents the well-known form found in plants, while PLD β and γ have been only recently discovered (Pappan et al., 1997b; Qin et al., 1997). These isoforms differ in substrate selectivity and cofactors required for activity. Here, I report that PLD β and γ isoforms were active toward N-acylphosphatidylethanolamine (NAPE), but PLD α was not. The ability of PLD β and γ to hydrolyze NAPE marks a key difference from PLD α. N-acylethanolamines (NAE), the hydrolytic products of NAPE by PLD β and γ, inhibited PLD α from castor bean and cabbage. Inhibition of PLD α by NAE was dose-dependent and inversely proportional to acyl chain length and degree of unsaturation. Enzyme kinetic analysis suggested non-competitive inhibition of PLD α by NAE 14:0. In addition, a 1.2-kb tobacco (Nicotiana tabacum L.) cDNA fragment was isolated that possessed a 74% amino acid identity to Arabidopsis PLD β indicating that this isoform is expressed in tobacco cells. Collectively, these results provide evidence for NAE producing PLD activities and suggest a possible regulatory role for NAE with respect to PLD α.
Date: December 1998
Creator: Brown, Shea Austin
Partner: UNT Libraries

Alternate Substrates and Isotope Effects as a Probe of the Malic Enzyme Reaction

Description: Dissociation constants for alternate dirmcleotide substrates and competitive inhibitors suggest that the dinucleotide binding site of the Ascaris suum NAD-malic enzyme is hydrophobic in the vicinity of the nicotinamide ring. Changes in the divalent metal ion activator from Mg^2+ to Mn^2+ or Cd^2+ results in a decrease in the dinucleotide affinity and an increase in the affinity for malate. Primary deuterium and 13-C isotope effects obtained with the different metal ions suggest either a change in the transition state structure for the hydride transfer or decarboxylation steps or both. Deuterium isotope effects are finite whether reactants are maintained at saturating or limiting concentrations with all the metal ions and dinucleotide substrates used. With Cd^2+ as the divalent metal ion, inactivation of the enzyme occurs whether enzyme alone is present or is turning over. Upon inactivation only Cd^2+ ions are bound to the enzyme which becomes denatured. Modification of the enzyme to give an SCN-enzyme decreases the ability of Cd^2+ to cause inactivation. The modified enzyme generally exhibits increases in K_NAD and K_i_metai and decreases in V_max as the metal size increases from Mg^2+ to Mn^2+ or Cd^2+, indicative of crowding in the site. In all cases, affinity for malate greatly decreases, suggesting that malate does not bind optimally to the modified enzyme. For the native enzyme, primary deuterium isotope effects increase with a concomitant decrease in the 13-C effects when NAD is replaced by an alternate dinucleotide substrate different in redox potential. This suggests that when the alternate dinucleotides are used, a switch in the rate limitation of the chemical steps occurs with hydride transfer more rate limiting than decarboxylation. Deuteration of malate decreases the 13-C effect with NAD for the native enzyme, but an increase in 13-C effect is obtained with alternate dinucleotides. These suggest the presence of a ...
Date: August 1988
Creator: Gavva, Sandhya Reddy
Partner: UNT Libraries

Analysis of a Human Transfer RNA Gene Cluster and Characterization of the Transcription Unit and Two Processed Pseudogenes of Chimpanzee Triosephosphate Isomerase

Description: An 18.5-kb human DNA segment was selected from a human XCharon-4A library by hybridization to mammalian valine tRNAiAc and found to encompass a cluster of three tRNA genes. Two valine tRNA genes with anticodons of AAC and CAC, encoding the major and minor cytoplasmic valine tRNA isoacceptors, respectively, and a lysine tRNAcuu gene were identified by Southern blot hybridization and DNA sequence analysis of a 7.1-kb region of the human DNA insert. At least nine Alu family members were found interspersed throughout the human DNA fragment. The tRNA genes are accurately transcribed by RNA polymerase III in a HeLa cell extract, since the RNase Ti fingerprints of the mature-sized tRNA transcription products are consistent with the DNA sequences of the structural genes. Three members of the chimpanzee triosephosphate isomerase (TPI) gene family, the functional transcription unit and two processed pseudogenes, were characterized by genomic blotting and DNA sequence analysis. The bona fide TPI gene spans 3.5 kb with seven exons and six introns, and is the first complete hominoid TPI gene sequenced. The gene exhibits a very high identity with the human and rhesus TPI genes. In particular, the polypeptides of 248 amino acids encoded by the chimpanzee and human TPI genes are identical, although the two coding regions differ in the third codon wobble positions for five amino acids. An Alu member occurs upstream from one of the processed pseudogenes, whereas an isolated endogenous retroviral long terminal repeat (HERV-K) occurs within the structural region of the other processed pseudogene. The ages of the processed pseudogenes were estimated to be 2.6 and 10.4 million years, implying that one was inserted into the genome before the divergence of the chimpanzee and human lineages, and the other inserted into the chimpanzee genome after the divergence.
Date: August 1990
Creator: Craig, Leonard C. (Leonard Callaway)
Partner: UNT Libraries

Analysis of Human Transfer RNA Gene Heteroclusters

Description: Two phage lambda clones encompassing human tRNA genes have been isolated from a human gene library harbored in bacteriophage lambda Charon-UA. One of the clones (designated as hLeuU) containing a 20-kb human DNA fragment was isolated and found to contain a cluster of four tRNA genes. An 8.2-kb Hindlll fragment encompassing the four tRNA genes was isolated from the 20-kb fragment and subcloned into pBR322 for restriction mapping and DNA sequence analysis. The four tRNA genes are arranged as two tandem pairs with the first pair containing a proline tRNAAGQ gene and a leucine tRNAAAQ gene and the second pair containing another proline tRNAAGG gene and a threonine tRNAuQU gene. The two pairs are separated about 3 kb from each other, and the leucine tRNAAAG gene is of opposite polarity from the other three tRNA genes. The tRNA transcription units were sequenced by a unidirectional deletion dideoxyribonucleotide chain-termination method in the M13mpl8 and 19 vectors. The coding regions of the four tRNA genes contain characteristic internal split promoter sequences and do not encode intervening sequences nor the CCA trinucleotide found in mature tRNAs. The proline t R N A A G G gene is separated from the leucine t R N A A A Q gene by a 725-bp intergenic region and the second proline t R N A A G Q is 315 bp downstream of the threonine t R N A U G U gene. The coding sequences of the two proline tRNA genes are identical. The 3'-flanking regions near the 3*-ends of these four tRNA genes have typical RNA polymerase III termination sites of at least four c o n s e c u t i v e T nt. There is no homology between the 5'-flanking regions of these genes. All four tRNA genes are potentially ...
Date: December 1986
Creator: Chang, Yung-Nien
Partner: UNT Libraries

Application of Synthetic Peptides as Substrates for Reversible Phosphorylation

Description: Two highly homologous synthetic peptides MLC(3-13) (K-R-A-K-A-K-T-TK-K-R-G) and MLC(5-13) (A-K-A-K-T-T-K-K-R-G) corresponding to the amino terminal amino acid sequence of smooth muscle myosin light chain were utilized as substrates for protein kinase C purified from murine lymphosarcoma tumors to determine the role of the primary amino acid sequence of protein kinase C substrates in defining the lipid (phosphatidyl serine and diacylglycerol) requirements for the activation of the enzyme. Removal of the basic residues lysine and arginine from the amino terminus of MLC(3-13) did not have a significant effect on the Ka value of diacylglycerol. The binding of effector to calcium-protein kinase C appears to be random since binding of one effector did not block the binding of the other.
Date: August 1992
Creator: Abukhalaf, Imad Kazem
Partner: UNT Libraries

Autophosphorylation and Autoactivation of an S6/H4 Kinase Isolated From Human Placenta

Description: A number of protein kinases have been shown to undergo autophosphorylation, but few have demonstrated a coordinate increase or decrease in enzymatic activity as a result. Described here is a novel S6 kinase isolated from human placenta which autoactivates through autophosphorylation in vitro. This S6/H4 kinase, purified in an inactive state, was shown to be a protein of Mr of 60,000 as estimated by SDS-PAGE and could catalyze the phosphorylation of the synthetic peptide S6-21, the histone H4, and myelin basic protein. Mild digestion of the inactive S6/H4 kinase with trypsin was necessary, but not sufficient, to activate the kinase fully
Date: May 1994
Creator: Dennis, Patrick B. (Patrick Brian)
Partner: UNT Libraries

Changes in Body Composition, Plasma Alanine, and Urinary Nitrogen in Rats Subjected to Negative Caloric Balance Through Diet, Diet/Exercise, and Exercise

Description: Male Fischer rats (n=43) were used in a diet-diet/ exercise design to investigate the apparent protein sparing effects of exercise. The animals were divided into five groups: INITIAL (baseline), SEDENTARY (control), DIET, DIET/EXERCISE, and EXERCISE. Carcasses were analyzed for body composition, the blood for plasma alanine concentration and the urine for urea nitrogen concentration. The results showed no significant differences between groups in urinary urea nitrogen, plasma alanine, body weight, or carcass weights. The EXERCISE group had a significant increase in percent protein and a significant decrease in percent fat and grams of fat when compared to all other groups (p <.05).
Date: August 1982
Creator: Ayres, John J. (John Jay)
Partner: UNT Libraries

Characterization of a Human 28S Ribosomal RNA Retropseudogene and Other Repetitive DNA Sequence Elements Isolated from a Human X Chromosome-Specific Library

Description: Three genomic clones encompassing human DNA segments (designated LhX-3, LhX-4, and LhX5) were isolated from an X chromosome-specific library and subjected to analysis by physical mapping and DNA sequencing. It was found that these three clones are very rich in repetitive DNA sequence elements and retropseudogenes.
Date: May 1994
Creator: Wang, Suyue
Partner: UNT Libraries

Cottonseed Microsomal N-Acylphosphatidylethanolamine Synthase: Identification, Purification and Biochemical Characterization of a Unique Acyltransferase

Description: N-Acylphosphatidylethanoiamine (NAPE) is synthesized in the microsomes of cotton seedlings by a mechanism that is possibly unique to plants, the ATP-, Ca2+-, and CoA-independent acylation ofphosphatidylethanolamine (PE) with unesterified free fatty acids (FFAs), catalyzed by NAPE synthase. A photoreactive free fatty acid analogue, 12-[(4- azidosalicyl)amino]dodecanoic acid (ASD), and its 125I-labeled derivative acted as substrates for the NAPE synthase enzyme.
Date: December 1998
Creator: McAndrew, Rosemary S. (Rosemary Smith)
Partner: UNT Libraries

Dependence of the Kinetic Mechanism of Adenosine 3',5'-Monophosphate Dependent Protein Kinase Catalytic Subunit in the Direction of Magnesium Adenosine 5'-Diphosphate Phosphorylation on pH and the Concentration of Free Magnesium Ions

Description: To define the overall kinetic and chemical mechanism of adenosine 3',5'-monophosphate dependent protein kinase catalytic subunit, the mechanism in the direction of MgADP phosphorylation was determined, using studies of initial velocity in the absence and presence of dead-end inhibitors. The kinetic mechanism was determined as a function of uncomplexed Mg^2+ (Mg_f) at pH 7.2 and as a function of pH at low (0.5 mM) Mg_f. At pH 7.2 data are consistent with a random kinetic mechanism in the direction of MgADP phosphorylation with both pathways allowed: the pathway in which MgADP binds to enzyme prior to phosphorylated peptide (PSP) and that in which PSP binds before MgADP. One or the other pathway predominates, depending on Mg_f concentration. At 0.5 mM Mg_f, the mechanism is steady-state ordered with the pathway where PSP binds first preferred; at 10 mM Mg_f, the mechanism is equilibrium ordered, and the pathway in which MgADP binds first preferred. This change in mechanism to equilibrium ordered is due to an increase in affinity of enzyme for MgADP and a decrease in affinity for PSP. There is also a pH-dependent change in mechanism at 0.5 mM Mg_f. At pH 6 the mechanism is equilibrium ordered with the pathway where PSP binds first preferred. At pH 7.6 the mechanism is ordered with MgADP binding first. The log V/E_t vs. pH profile is pH-independent, suggesting only the correctly protonated form of each substrate binds to enzyme. The log V/K_MgADP vs. PH profile gives a pK of 7, likely that of a general acid, which must be protonated for activity. The pK_iPSP vs. pH profile gives a pK of 6.5, likely reflecting the peptide phosphoryl group, which must be unprotonated for activity.
Date: December 1992
Creator: Qamar, Raheel
Partner: UNT Libraries

Development of Enabling Technologies to Visualize the Plant Lipidome

Description: Improvements in mass spectrometry (MS)-based strategies for characterizing the plant lipidome through quantitative and qualitative approaches such as shotgun lipidomics have substantially enhanced our understanding of the structural diversity and functional complexity of plant lipids. However, most of these approaches require chemical extractions that result in the loss of the original spatial context and cellular compartmentation for these compounds. To address this current limitation, several technologies were developed to visualize lipids in situ with detailed chemical information. A subcellular visualization approach, direct organelle MS, was developed for directly sampling and analyzing the triacylglycerol contents within purified lipid droplets (LDs) at the level of a single LD. Sampling of single LDs demonstrated seed lipid droplet-to-droplet variability in triacylglycerol (TAG) composition suggesting that there may be substantial variation in the intracellular packaging process for neutral lipids in plant tissues. A cellular and tissue visualization approach, MS imaging, was implemented and enhanced for visualizing the lipid distributions in oilseeds. In mature cotton seed embryos distributions of storage lipids (TAGs) and their phosphatidylcholine (PCs) precursors were distribution heterogeneous between the cotyledons and embryonic axis raising new questions about extent and regulation of oilseed heterogeneity. Extension of this methodology provides an avenue for understanding metabolism in cellular (perhaps even subcellular) context with substantial metabolic engineering implications. To visualize metabolite distributions, a free and customizable application, Metabolite Imager, was developed providing several tools for spatially-based chemical data analysis. These tools collectively enable new forms of visualizing the plant lipidome and should prove valuable toward addressing additional unanswered biological questions.
Date: August 2013
Creator: Horn, Patrick J.
Partner: UNT Libraries

FLP-mediated conditional loss of an essential gene to facilitate complementation assays

Description: Commonly, when it is desirable to replace an essential gene with an allelic series of mutated genes, or genes with altered expression patterns, the complementing constructs are introduced into heterozygous plants, followed by the selection of homozygous null segregants. To overcome this laborious and time-consuming step, the newly developed two-component system utilizes a site-specific recombinase to excise a wild-type copy of the gene of interest from transformed tissues. In the first component (the first vector), a wild-type version of the gene is placed between target sequences recognized by FLP recombinase from the yeast 2 μm plasmid. This construct is transformed into a plant heterozygous for a null mutation at the endogenous locus, and progeny plants carrying the excisable complementing gene and segregating homozygous knockout at the endogenous locus are selected. The second component (the second vector) carries the experimental gene along with the FLP gene. When this construct is introduced, FLP recombinase excises the complementing gene, leaving the experimental gene as the only functional copy. The FLP gene is driven by an egg apparatus specific enhancer (EASE) to ensure excision of the complementing cDNA in the egg cell and zygote following floral-dip transformation. The utility of this system is being tested using various experimental derivatives of the essential sucrose-proton symporter, AtSUC2, which is required for photoassimilate transport.
Date: December 2007
Creator: Ganesan, Savita
Partner: UNT Libraries

Fluorescence labeling and computational analysis of the strut of myosin's 50 kDa cleft.

Description: In order to understand the structural changes in myosin S1, fluorescence polarization and computational dynamics simulations were used. Dynamics simulations on the S1 motor domain indicated that significant flexibility was present throughout the molecular model. The constrained opening versus closing of the 50 kDa cleft appeared to induce opposite directions of movement in the lever arm. A sequence called the "strut" which traverses the 50 kDa cleft and may play an important role in positioning the actomyosin binding interface during actin binding is thought to be intimately linked to distant structural changes in the myosin's nucleotide cleft and neck regions. To study the dynamics of the strut region, a method of fluorescent labeling of the strut was discovered using the dye CY3. CY3 served as a hydrophobic tag for purification by hydrophobic interaction chromatography which enabled the separation of labeled and unlabeled species of S1 including a fraction labeled specifically at the strut sequence. The high specificity of labeling was verified by proteolytic digestions, gel electrophoresis, and mass spectroscopy. Analysis of the labeled S1 by collisional quenching, fluorescence polarization, and actin-activated ATPase activity were consistent with predictions from structural models of the probe's location. Although the fluorescent intensity of the CY3 was insensitive to actin binding, its fluorescence polarization was notably affected. Intriguingly, the mobility of the probe increases upon S1 binding to actin suggesting that the CY3 becomes displaced from interactions with the surface of S1 and is consistent with a structural change in the strut due to cleft motions. Labeling the strut reduced the affinity of S1 for actin but did not prevent actin-activated ATPase activity which makes it a potentially useful probe of the actomyosin interface. The different conformations of myosin S1 indicated that the strut is not as flexible as several other key regions of myosin ...
Date: August 2007
Creator: Gawalapu, Ravi Kumar
Partner: UNT Libraries

Fumarate Activation and Kinetic Solvent Isotope Effects as Probes of the NAD-Malic Enzyme Reaction

Description: The kinetic mechanism of activation of the NAD-malic enzyme by fumarate and the transition state structure for the oxidation malate for the NAD-malic enzyme reaction have been studied. Fumarate exerts its activating effect by decreasing the off-rate for malate from the E:Mg:malate and E:Mg:NAD:malate complexes. The activation by fumarate results in a decrease in K_imalate and an increase in V/K_malate by about 2-fold, while the maximum velocity remains constant. A discrimination exists between active and activator sites for the binding of dicarboxylic acids. Activation by fumarate is proposed to have physiologic importance in the parasite. The hydride transfer transition state for the NAD-malic enzyme reaction is concerted with respect to solvent isotope sensitive and hydride transfer steps. Two protons are involved in the solvent isotope sensitive step, one with a normal fractionation factor, another with an inverse fractionation factor. A structure for the transition state for hydride transfer in the NAD-malic enzyme reaction is proposed.
Date: December 1992
Creator: Lai, Chung-Jeng
Partner: UNT Libraries

Function of the ENOD8 gene in nodules of Medicago truncatula.

Description: To elaborate on the function(s) of the ENOD8 gene in the nodules of M. truncatula, several different experimental approaches were used. A census of the ENOD8 genes was first completed indicating that only ENOD8.1 (nt10554-12564 of GenBank AF463407) is highly expressed in nodule tissues. A maltose binding protein-ENOD8 fusion protein was made with an E. coli recombinant system. A variety of biochemical assays were undertaken with the MBP-ENOD8 recombinant protein expressed in E. coli, which did not yield the esterase activity observed for ENOD8 protein nodule fractions purified from M. sativa, tested on general esterase substrates, α-naphthyl acetate, and p-nitrophenylacetate. Attempts were also made to express ENOD8 in a Pichia pastoris system; no ENOD8 protein could be detected from Pichia pastoris strains which were transformed with the ENOD8 expression cassette. Additionally, it was shown that the ENOD8 protein can be recombinantly synthesized by Nicotiana benthamiana in a soluble form, which could be tested for activity toward esterase substrates, bearing resemblance to nodule compounds, such as the Nod factor. Transcription localization studies using an ENOD8 promoter gusA fusion indicated that ENOD8 is expressed in the bacteroid-invaded zone of the nodule. The ENOD8 protein was also detected in that same zone by immunolocalization. Confocal immunomicroscopy with an affinity-purified anti-ENOD8 oligopeptide antibody showed that the ENOD8 protein localizes at the interface between the plant and the bacteroid-differentiated rhizobia, in the symbiosome membrane or symbiosome space. This suggests a possible link between ENOD8 protein and bacteroid differentiation, nitrogen fixation, or plant defense. These possible functions for ENOD8 could be tested with an ENOD8-RNAi transgenic line devoid of detectable ENOD8 proteins.
Date: December 2006
Creator: Coque, Laurent
Partner: UNT Libraries

Functional Characterization of Plant Fatty Acid Amide Hydrolases

Description: Fatty acid amide hydrolase (FAAH) terminates the endocannabinoid signaling pathway that regulates numerous neurobehavioral processes in animals by hydrolyzing a class of lipid mediators, N-acylethanolamines (NAEs). Recent identification of an Arabidopsis FAAH homologue (AtFAAH) and several studies, especially those using AtFAAH overexpressing and knock-out lines suggest that a FAAH-mediated pathway exists in plants for the metabolism of endogenous NAEs. Here, I provide evidence to support this concept by identifying candidate FAAH cDNA sequences in diverse plant species. NAE amidohydrolase assays confirmed that several of the proteins encoded by these cDNAs indeed catalyzed the hydrolysis of NAEs in vitro. Kinetic parameters, inhibition properties, and substrate specificities of the plant FAAH enzymes were very similar to those of mammalian FAAH. Five amino acid residues determined to be important for catalysis by rat FAAH were absolutely conserved within the plant FAAH sequences. Site-directed mutation of each of the five putative catalytic residues in AtFAAH abolished its hydrolytic activity when expressed in Escherichia coli. Contrary to overexpression of native AtFAAH in Arabidopsis that results in enhanced seedling growth, and in seedlings that were insensitive to exogenous NAE, overexpression of the inactive AtFAAH mutants showed no growth enhancement and no NAE tolerance. However, both active and inactive AtFAAH overexpressors displayed hypersensitivity to ABA, suggesting a function of the enzyme independent of its catalytic activity toward NAE substrates. Yeast two-hybrid screening identified Arg/Ser-rich zinc knuckle-containing protein as a candidate protein that physically and domain-specifically interacts with AtFAAH and its T-DNA knock-out Arabidopsis was hypersensitive to ABA to a degree similar to AtFAAH overexpressors. Taken together, AtFAAH appears to have a bifurcating function, via NAE hydrolysis and protein-protein interaction, to control Arabidopsis growth and interaction with phytohormone signaling pathways. These studies help to functionally define the group of enzymes that metabolize NAEs in plants, and further will ...
Date: December 2010
Creator: Kim, Sang-Chul
Partner: UNT Libraries

Gene Expression Profiling of the nip Mutant in Medicago truncatula

Description: The study of root nodule symbiosis between nitrogen-fixing bacteria and leguminous plant species is important because of the ability to supplement fixed nitrogen fertilizers and increase plant growth in poor soils. Our group has isolated a mutant called nip in the model legume Medicago truncatula that is defective in nodule symbiosis. The nip mutant (numerous infections with polyphenolics) becomes infected by Sinorhizobium meliloti but then accumulates polyphenolic defense compounds in the nodule and fails to progress to a stage where nitrogen fixation can occur. Analysis of the transcriptome of nip roots prior to inoculation with rhizobia was undertaken using Affymetric Medicago Genome Array microarrays. The total RNA of 5-day old uninoculated seedlings was analyzed in triplicate to screen for the NIP gene based on downregulated transcript levels in the mutant as compared to wild type. Further microarray data was generated from 10 days post inoculation (dpi) nip and wild type plants. Analysis of the most highly downregulated transcripts revealed that the NIP gene was not identifiable based on transcript level. Putative gene function was assigned to transcripts with altered expression patterns in order to characterize the nip mutation phenotypically as inferred from the transcriptome. Functional analysis revealed a large number of chaperone proteins were highly expressed in the nip mutant, indicating high stress in the mutant prior to infection by rhizobia. Additionally, a database containing the information regarding the nip expression profile at both 0 days post inoculation (dpi) and 10 dpi were created for screening of candidate genes as predicted from sequence in the genomic region containing NIP.
Date: August 2007
Creator: McKethan, Brandon Lee
Partner: UNT Libraries

Hindrance of the Myosin Power Stroke Posed by the Proximity to the Troponin Complex Identified Using a Novel LRET Fluorescent Nanocircuit

Description: A novel luminescence resonance energy transfer (LRET) nanocircuit assay involving a donor and two acceptors in tandem was developed to study the dynamic interaction of skeletal muscle contraction proteins. The donor transmits energy relayed to the acceptors distinguishing myosin subfragment-1 (S1) lever arm orientations. The last acceptor allows the detection of S1's bound near or in between troponin complexes on the thin filament. Additionally, calcium related changes between troponin T and myosin were detected. Based on this data, the troponin complex situated every 7 actin monomers, hinders adjacently bound myosins to complete their power stroke; whereas myosins bound in between troponin complexes undergo complete power strokes.
Date: May 2007
Creator: Coffee Castro-Zena, Pilar G.
Partner: UNT Libraries

Identification and Characterization of a Calcium/Phospholipid-Dependent Protein Kinase in P1798 Lymphosarcomas

Description: Calcium/phospholipid-dependent protein kinase (PKC) was partially purified from P1798 lymphosarcoma. Phospholipid-dependence was specific for phosphatidylserine. PKC phosphorylated Histone 1, with an apparent K_m of 14.1 μM. Chlorpromazine, a lipid-binding drug, inhibited PKC activity by 100%. Further studies were undertaken to establish analytical conditions which could be applied to the study of PKC in intact cells. The conditions included (1) determining optimum cell concentration for measuring PKC activity, (2) recovering PKC into the soluble fraction of cell extracts, (3) evaluating calcium and phospholipid requirements of PKC in this fraction, and (4) inhibiting PKC in this fraction. Final studies involved treatment of intact cells with potential activators. Both phytohaemagglutinin and a phorbol ester increased PKC activation.
Date: May 1984
Creator: Magnino, Peggy E. (Peggy Elizabeth)
Partner: UNT Libraries

Identification and Characterization of an Arabidopsis Thaliana Mutant with Tolerance to N-lauroylethanolamime

Description: N-Acylethanolamines (NAEs) are fatty acid derivatives in plants that negatively influence seedling growth. N-Lauroylethanolamine (NAE 12:0), one type of NAE, inhibits root length, increases radial swelling of root tips and reduces root hair numbers in a dose dependent manner in Arabidopis thaliana L. (ecotype Columbia). A forward genetics approach was employed by screening a population of T-DNA “activation-tagged” developed by the Salk Institute lines for NAE resistance to identify potential genes involved in NAE signaling events in Arabidopsis thaliana L. (ecotype Columbia). Seeds of the activation tagged lines were grown at 0, 25, 30, 50, 75 and 100 µM N-lauroylethanolamime (NAE 12:0). Ten plants which displayed NAE tolerance (NRA) seedling phenotypes, compared with wildtype (Columbia, Col-0) seedlings were identified. I focused on one mutant line, identified as NRA 25, where the tolerance to NAE 12:0 appears to be mediated by a single dominant, nuclear gene. Thermal asymmetric interlaced (TAIL) PCR identified the location of the T-DNA insert as 3.86 kbp upstream of the locus At1g68510. Quantitative PCR indicated that the transcript level corresponding to At1g68510 is upregulated approximately 20 fold in the mutant relative to wildtype. To determine whether the NAE tolerance in NRA 25 is associated with overexpression of At1g68510 I created overexpressing lines of At1g68510 with and without GFP fusions behind the 2X35S CaMV promoter. As predicted, results with overexpressing lines of At1g68510 also exhibited enhanced resistance to NAE when compared with the wildtype. Confocal images of the fusion proteins suggest that GFP-At1g68510 is concentrated in the nucleus and this was confirmed by counterstaining with 4', 6-Diamidino-2-phenylindol (DAPI). Futhermore, At1g68510 overexpressing lines and NRA 25 line also exhibited tolerance to abscisic acid (ABA) during seedling germination. The findings suggests that At1g68510 overexpression mediates seedling tolerance to both ABA and NAE, a mechanism independent of fatty acid amide hydrolase ...
Date: December 2015
Creator: Adhikari, Bikash
Partner: UNT Libraries