Structural and kinetic characterization of an archaeal β-class carbonic anhydrase

K. S. Smith, N. J. Cosper, C. Stalhandske, R. A. Scott, J. G. Ferry

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The β-class carbonic anhydrase from the archaeon Methanobacterium thermoautotrophicum (Cab) was structurally and kinetically characterized. Analytical ultracentrifugation experiments show that Cab is a tetramer. Circular dichroism studies of Cab and the Spinacia oleracea (spinach) β-class carbonic anhydrase indicate that the secondary structure of the β-class enzymes is predominantly α-helical, unlike that of the α- or γ-class enzymes. Extended X-ray absorption fine structure results indicate the active zinc site of Cab is coordinated by two sulfur and two O/N ligands, with the possibility that one of the O/N ligands is derived from histidine and the other from water. Both the steady-state parameters kcat and kcat/Km for CO2 hydration are pH dependent. The steady-state parameter kcat is buffer-dependent in a saturable manner at both pH 8.5 and 6.5, and the analysis suggested a ping-pong mechanism in which buffer is the second substrate. At saturating buffer conditions and pH 8.5, kcat is 2.1-fold higher in H2O than in D2O, consistent with an intramolecular proton transfer step being rate contributing. The steady-state parameter kcat/Km is not dependent on buffer, and no solvent hydrogen isotope effect was observed. The results suggest a zinc hydroxide mechanism for Cab. The overall results indicate that prokaryotic β-class carbonic anhydrases have fundamental characteristics similar to the eukaryotic β-class enzymes and firmly establish that the α-, β-, and γ-classes are convergently evolved enzymes that, although structurally distinct, are functionally equivalent.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)6605-6613
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of bacteriology
Issue number23
StatePublished - 2000

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Microbiology
  • Molecular Biology


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