Phosphorylation Mechanism of Phosphomevalonate Kinase: Implications for Rational Engineering of Isoprenoid Biosynthetic Pathway Enzymes

Meilan Huang, Kexin Wei, Xiao Li, James McClory, Guixiang Hu, Jian-Wei Zou, David Timson

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Mevalonate pathway is of important clinical, pharmaceutical and biotechnological relevance.However, lack of the understanding of the phosphorylation mechanism of the kinases in this pathway has limited rationally engineering the kinases in industry. Here the phosphorylation reaction mechanism of a representative kinase in the mevalonate pathway, phosphomevalonate kinase, was studied by using molecular dynamics and hybrid QM/MM methods. We find that a conserved residue (Ser106) is reorientated to anchor ATP via a stable H-bond interaction. In addition, Ser213 located on the α-helix at the catalytic site is repositioned to further approach the substrate, facilitating the proton transfer during the phosphorylation. Furthermore, we elucidate that Lys101 functions to neutralize the negative charge developed at the β-, γ-bridging oxygen atom of ATP during phosphoryl transfer. We demonstrate that the dissociative catalytic reaction occurs via a direct phosphorylation pathway. This is the first study on the phosphorylation mechanism of a mevalonate pathway kinase. The elucidation of the catalytic mechanism not only sheds light on the common catalytic mechanism of GHMP kinase superfamily, but also provides the structural basis for engineering the mevalonate pathway kinases to further exploit their applications in theproduction of a wide range of fine chemicals such as biofuels or pharmaceuticals.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)10714-10722
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Physical Chemistry B
Issue number41
Publication statusPublished - 27 Sept 2016

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