Evolutionary links as revealed by the structure of Thermotoga maritima S-adenosylmethionine decarboxylase

Angela V. Toms, Cynthia Kinsland, Diane E. McCloskey, Anthony E. Pegg, Steven E. Ealick

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

32 Scopus citations


S-adenosylmethionine decarboxylase (AdoMetDC) is a critical regulatory enzyme of the polyamine biosynthetic pathway and belongs to a small class of pyruvoyl-dependent amino acid decarboxylases. Structural elucidation of the prokaryotic AdoMetDC is of substantial interest in order to determine the relationship between the eukaryotic and prokaryotic forms of the enzyme. Although both forms utilize pyruvoyl groups, there is no detectable sequence similarity except at the site of pyruvoyl group formation. The x-ray structure of the Thermatoga maritima AdoMetDC proenzyme reveals a dimeric protein fold that is remarkably similar to the eukaryotic AdoMetDC protomer, suggesting an evolutionary link between the two forms of the enzyme. Three key active site residues (Ser55, His68, and Cys83) involved in substrate binding, catalysis or proenzyme processing that were identified in the human and potato AdoMetDCs are structurally conserved in the T. maritima AdoMetDC despite very limited primary sequence identity. The role of Ser 55, His68, and Cys83 in the self-processing reaction was investigated through site-directed mutagenesis. A homology model for the Escherichia coli AdoMetDC was generated based on the structures of the T. maritima and human AdoMetDCs.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)33837-33846
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Biological Chemistry
Issue number32
StatePublished - Aug 6 2004

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology


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