Title page for ETD etd-062999-160810


Type of Document Dissertation
Author Leartsakulpanich, Ubolsree
Author's Email Address uxl3@psu.edu
URN etd-062999-160810
Title Biochemical characterization of a novel iron-sulfur flavoprotein from Methanosarcina thermophila strain TM-1
Degree PhD
Department Biochemistry and Anaerobic Microbiology
Advisory Committee
Advisor Name Title
Ferry, James G. Committee Chair
Dean, Dennis R. Committee Member
Gregory, Eugene M. Committee Member
Hess, John L. Committee Member
Larson, Timothy J. Committee Member
White, Robert H. Committee Member
Keywords
  • Iron-sulfur flavoprotein
  • Methanosarcina thermophila
Date of Defense 1999-06-11
Availability unrestricted
Abstract
ABSTRACT

The iron-sulfur flavoprotein (Isf) from the acetate utilizing methanoarchaeon Methanosarcina thermophila was heterologously produced in Escherichia coli, purified to homogeneity, and characterized to determine the properties of the iron-sulfur cluster and FMN. Chemical and spectroscopic analyses indicated that Isf contained one 4Fe-4S cluster and one FMN per monomer. The midpoint potentials of the [4Fe-4S]2+/1+ center and FMN/FMNH2 redox couple were -394 and -277 mV respectively.

The deduced amino acid sequence of Isf revealed high identity with Isf homologues from the CO2 reducing methanoarchaea Methanococcus jannaschii and Methanobacterium thermoautotrophicum. Extracts of H2-CO2-grown M. thermoautotrophicum cells were able to reduce Isf from M. thermophila using either H2 or CO as the reductant. Addition of ferredoxin A to the reaction further stimulated the rate of Isf reduction. These results suggest that Isf homologues are coupled to ferredoxin in electron transfer chains in methanoarchaea with diverse metabolic pathways.

Reconstituted systems containing carbon monoxide dehydrogenase/acetyl-CoA synthase complex (CODH/ACS), ferredoxin A, Isf, and the designated electron carriers (NAD, NADP, F420, and 2-hydroxyphenazine) were used in an attempt to determine the electron acceptor for Isf. Isf was unable to reduce any of these compounds. Furthermore, 2-hydroxyphenazine competed with Isf to accept electrons from ferredoxin A indicating that ferredoxin A is a more favorable electron partner for 2-hydroxyphenazine. Thus, the physiological electron acceptor for Isf is unknown.

Amino acid sequence alignment of Isf sequences revealed a conserved atypical cysteine motif with the potential to ligate the 4Fe-4S cluster. Site-directed mutagenesis of the cysteine residues in this motif, and the two additional cysteines in the sequence, was used to investigate these cysteine residue as ligands for coordinating the 4Fe-4S center of Isf. Spectroscopic and biochemical analyses were consistent with the conserved cysteine motif functioning as ligating the 4Fe-4S center. Redox properties of the 4Fe-4S and FMN centers revealed a role for the 4Fe-4S center in the transfer of electrons from ferredoxin A to FMN.

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