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Sample records for putative o-methyltransferase accumulating

  1. Structure and Biophysical Characterization of the S-Adenosylmethionine-dependent O-Methyltransferase PaMTH1, a Putative Enzyme Accumulating during Senescence of Podospora anserina.

    PubMed

    Chatterjee, Deep; Kudlinzki, Denis; Linhard, Verena; Saxena, Krishna; Schieborr, Ulrich; Gande, Santosh L; Wurm, Jan Philip; Wöhnert, Jens; Abele, Rupert; Rogov, Vladimir V; Dötsch, Volker; Osiewacz, Heinz D; Sreeramulu, Sridhar; Schwalbe, Harald

    2015-06-26

    Low levels of reactive oxygen species (ROS) act as important signaling molecules, but in excess they can damage biomolecules. ROS regulation is therefore of key importance. Several polyphenols in general and flavonoids in particular have the potential to generate hydroxyl radicals, the most hazardous among all ROS. However, the generation of a hydroxyl radical and subsequent ROS formation can be prevented by methylation of the hydroxyl group of the flavonoids. O-Methylation is performed by O-methyltransferases, members of the S-adenosyl-l-methionine (SAM)-dependent O-methyltransferase superfamily involved in the secondary metabolism of many species across all kingdoms. In the filamentous fungus Podospora anserina, a well established aging model, the O-methyltransferase (PaMTH1) was reported to accumulate in total and mitochondrial protein extracts during aging. In vitro functional studies revealed flavonoids and in particular myricetin as its potential substrate. The molecular architecture of PaMTH1 and the mechanism of the methyl transfer reaction remain unknown. Here, we report the crystal structures of PaMTH1 apoenzyme, PaMTH1-SAM (co-factor), and PaMTH1-S-adenosyl homocysteine (by-product) co-complexes refined to 2.0, 1.9, and 1.9 Å, respectively. PaMTH1 forms a tight dimer through swapping of the N termini. Each monomer adopts the Rossmann fold typical for many SAM-binding methyltransferases. Structural comparisons between different O-methyltransferases reveal a strikingly similar co-factor binding pocket but differences in the substrate binding pocket, indicating specific molecular determinants required for substrate selection. Furthermore, using NMR, mass spectrometry, and site-directed active site mutagenesis, we show that PaMTH1 catalyzes the transfer of the methyl group from SAM to one hydroxyl group of the myricetin in a cation-dependent manner. PMID:25979334

  2. Structure and Biophysical Characterization of the S-Adenosylmethionine-dependent O-Methyltransferase PaMTH1, a Putative Enzyme Accumulating during Senescence of Podospora anserina *

    PubMed Central

    Chatterjee, Deep; Kudlinzki, Denis; Linhard, Verena; Saxena, Krishna; Schieborr, Ulrich; Gande, Santosh L.; Wurm, Jan Philip; Wöhnert, Jens; Abele, Rupert; Rogov, Vladimir V.; Dötsch, Volker; Osiewacz, Heinz D.; Sreeramulu, Sridhar; Schwalbe, Harald

    2015-01-01

    Low levels of reactive oxygen species (ROS) act as important signaling molecules, but in excess they can damage biomolecules. ROS regulation is therefore of key importance. Several polyphenols in general and flavonoids in particular have the potential to generate hydroxyl radicals, the most hazardous among all ROS. However, the generation of a hydroxyl radical and subsequent ROS formation can be prevented by methylation of the hydroxyl group of the flavonoids. O-Methylation is performed by O-methyltransferases, members of the S-adenosyl-l-methionine (SAM)-dependent O-methyltransferase superfamily involved in the secondary metabolism of many species across all kingdoms. In the filamentous fungus Podospora anserina, a well established aging model, the O-methyltransferase (PaMTH1) was reported to accumulate in total and mitochondrial protein extracts during aging. In vitro functional studies revealed flavonoids and in particular myricetin as its potential substrate. The molecular architecture of PaMTH1 and the mechanism of the methyl transfer reaction remain unknown. Here, we report the crystal structures of PaMTH1 apoenzyme, PaMTH1-SAM (co-factor), and PaMTH1-S-adenosyl homocysteine (by-product) co-complexes refined to 2.0, 1.9, and 1.9 Å, respectively. PaMTH1 forms a tight dimer through swapping of the N termini. Each monomer adopts the Rossmann fold typical for many SAM-binding methyltransferases. Structural comparisons between different O-methyltransferases reveal a strikingly similar co-factor binding pocket but differences in the substrate binding pocket, indicating specific molecular determinants required for substrate selection. Furthermore, using NMR, mass spectrometry, and site-directed active site mutagenesis, we show that PaMTH1 catalyzes the transfer of the methyl group from SAM to one hydroxyl group of the myricetin in a cation-dependent manner. PMID:25979334

  3. Methoxypyrazine Accumulation and O-Methyltransferase Gene Expression in Sauvignon blanc Grapes: The Role of Leaf Removal, Light Exposure, and Berry Development.

    PubMed

    Gregan, Scott M; Jordan, Brian

    2016-03-23

    Methoxypyrazines are present in the grapes of certain Vitis vinifera varieties including Sauvignon blanc and contribute herbaceous/green aromas to wine. Environmental factors such as light exposure and temperature can influence methoxypyrazine levels, and viticultural interventions such as canopy manipulation have the ability to reduce methoxypyrazine accumulation in grapes. We assessed methoxypyrazine levels and showed that leaf removal significantly reduces accumulation in Sauvignon blanc grapes. The main effect of reducing methoxypyrazines was preveraison, as postveraison treatments had no effect on concentrations at harvest. Methoxypyrazine concentrations in controls peaked preveraison and decreased through harvest. Dilution due to an increase in berry weight was found to be the major driver of decreasing concentrations, as methoxypyrazine levels on a per berry basis were found to increase through development in two of three seasons. In the one year of our study that showed contrasting results, analyses of weather data indicate that warmer than average temperatures appear to be the principal factor affecting the berries' ability to accumulate and retain methoxypyrazines. We also explored the expression of potential biosynthetic O-methyltransferase genes VvOMT1, VvOMT2, and VvOMT3; no significant differences were observed with respect to effect of leaf removal and light exposure. PMID:26923868

  4. Molecular cloning, characterization and expression of the caffeic acid O-methyltransferase (COMT) ortholog from kenaf (Hibiscus cannabinus)

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    We cloned the full-length of the gene putatively encoding caffeic acid O-methyltransferase (COMT) from kenaf (Hibiscus cannabinus L.) using degenerate primers and the RACE (rapid amplification of cDNA ends) method. Kenaf is an herbaceous and rapidly growing dicotyledonous plant with great potential ...

  5. Monolignol 4-O-methyltransferases and uses thereof

    DOEpatents

    Liu, Chang-Jun; Bhuiya, Mohammad-Wadud; Zhang, Kewei

    2014-11-18

    Modified (iso)eugenol 4-O-methyltransferase enzymes having novel capacity for methylation of monolignols and reduction of lignin polymerization in plant cell wall are disclosed. Sequences encoding the modified enzymes are disclosed.

  6. Characterization of the calicheamicin orsellinate C2-O-methyltransferase CalO6.

    PubMed

    Singh, Shanteri; Nandurkar, Nitin S; Thorson, Jon S

    2014-07-01

    Although bacterial iterative type I polyketide synthases are now known to participate in the biosynthesis of a small set of diverse natural products, the subsequent downstream modification of the resulting polyketide products is poorly understood. We report the functional characterization of the putative orsellinic acid C2-O-methyltransferase, which is involved in calicheamicin biosynthesis. This study suggests that C2-O-methylation precedes C3-hydroxylation/methylation and C5-iodination and requires a coenzyme A- or acyl carrier protein-bound substrate. PMID:24978950

  7. O-Methyltransferases involved in biphenyl and dibenzofuran biosynthesis.

    PubMed

    Khalil, Mohammed N A; Brandt, Wolfgang; Beuerle, Till; Reckwell, Dennis; Groeneveld, Josephine; Hänsch, Robert; Gaid, Mariam M; Liu, Benye; Beerhues, Ludger

    2015-07-01

    Biphenyls and dibenzofurans are the phytoalexins of the Malinae involving apple and pear. Biosynthesis of the defence compounds includes two O-methylation reactions. cDNAs encoding the O-methyltransferase (OMT) enzymes were isolated from rowan (Sorbus aucuparia) cell cultures after treatment with an elicitor preparation from the scab-causing fungus, Venturia inaequalis. The preferred substrate for SaOMT1 was 3,5-dihydroxybiphenyl, supplied by the first pathway-specific enzyme, biphenyl synthase (BIS). 3,5-Dihydroxybiphenyl underwent a single methylation reaction in the presence of S-adenosyl-l-methionine (SAM). The second enzyme, SaOMT2, exhibited its highest affinity for noraucuparin, however the turnover rate was greater with 5-hydroxyferulic acid. Both substrates were only methylated at the meta-positioned hydroxyl group. The substrate specificities of the OMTs and the regiospecificities of their reactions were rationalized by homology modeling and substrate docking. Interaction of the substrates with SAM also took place at a position other than the sulfur group. Expression of SaOMT1, SaOMT2 and SaBIS3 was transiently induced in rowan cell cultures by the addition of the fungal elicitor. While the immediate SaOMT1 products were not detectable in elicitor-treated cell cultures, noraucuparin and noreriobofuran accumulated transiently, followed by increasing levels of the SaOMT2 products aucuparin and eriobofuran. SaOMT1, SaOMT2 and SaBIS3 were N- and C-terminally fused with the super cyan fluorescent protein and a modified yellow fluorescent protein, respectively. All the fluorescent reporter fusions were localized to the cytoplasm of Nicotiana benthamiana leaf epidermis cells. A revised biosynthetic pathway of biphenyls and dibenzofurans in the Malinae is presented. PMID:26017378

  8. Structure and Mechanism of the Rebeccamycin Sugar 4'-O-Methyltransferase RebM

    SciTech Connect

    Singh, Shanteri; McCoy, Jason G.; Zhang, Changsheng; Bingman, Craig A.; Phillips, Jr., George N.; Thorson, Jon S.

    2008-12-12

    The 2.65-{angstrom} crystal structure of the rebeccamycin 4'-O-methyltransferase RebM in complex with S-adenosyl-l-homocysteine revealed RebM to adopt a typical S-adenosylmethionine-binding fold of small molecule O-methyltransferases (O-MTases) and display a weak dimerization domain unique to MTases. Using this structure as a basis, the RebM substrate binding model implicated a predominance of nonspecific hydrophobic interactions consistent with the reported ability of RebM to methylate a wide range of indolocarbazole surrogates. This model also illuminated the three putative RebM catalytic residues (His{sup 140/141} and Asp{sup 166}) subsequently found to be highly conserved among sequence-related natural product O-MTases from GC-rich bacteria. Interrogation of these residues via site-directed mutagenesis in RebM demonstrated His{sup 140} and Asp{sup 166} to be most important for catalysis. This study reveals RebM to be a member of the general acid/base-dependent O-MTases and, as the first crystal structure for a sugar O-MTase, may also present a template toward the future engineering of natural product MTases for combinatorial applications.

  9. Characterization of a multifunctional caffeoyl-CoA O-methyltransferase activated in grape berries upon drought stress.

    PubMed

    Giordano, Debora; Provenzano, Sofia; Ferrandino, Alessandra; Vitali, Marco; Pagliarani, Chiara; Roman, Federica; Cardinale, Francesca; Castellarin, Simone D; Schubert, Andrea

    2016-04-01

    Drought stress affects anthocyanin accumulation and modification in vegetative and reproductive plant tissues. Anthocyanins are the most abundant flavonoids in grape (Vitis vinifera L.) coloured berry genotypes and are essential markers of grape winemaking quality. They are mostly mono- and di-methylated, such modifications increase their stability and improve berry quality for winemaking. Anthocyanin methylation in grape berries is induced by drought stress. A few caffeoyl-CoA O-methyltransferases (CCoAOMTs) active on anthocyanins have been described in grape. However, no drought-activated O-methyltransferases have been described in grape berries yet. In this study, we characterized VvCCoAOMT, a grapevine gene known to induce methylation of CoA esters in cultured grape cells. Transcript accumulation of VvCCoAOMT was detected in berry skins, and increased during berry ripening on the plant, and in cultured berries treated with ABA, concomitantly with accumulation of methylated anthocyanins, suggesting that anthocyanins may be substrates of this enzyme. Contrary as previously observed in cell cultures, biotic stress (Botrytis cinerea inoculation) did not affect VvCCoAOMT gene expression in leaves or berries, while drought stress increased VvCCoAOMT transcript in berries. The recombinant VvCCoAOMT protein showed in vitro methylating activity on cyanidin 3-O-glucoside. We conclude that VvCCoAOMT is a multifunctional O-methyltransferase that may contribute to anthocyanin methylation activity in grape berries, in particular under drought stress conditions. PMID:26851572

  10. Engineering Monolignol 4-O-Methyltransferases to Modulate Lignin Biosynthesis

    SciTech Connect

    Bhuiya, M.W.; Liu, C.

    2010-01-01

    Lignin is a complex polymer derived from the oxidative coupling of three classical monolignols. Lignin precursors are methylated exclusively at the meta-positions (i.e. 3/5-OH) of their phenyl rings by native O-methyltransferases, and are precluded from substitution of the para-hydroxyl (4-OH) position. Ostensibly, the para-hydroxyls of phenolics are critically important for oxidative coupling of phenoxy radicals to form polymers. Therefore, creating a 4-O-methyltransferase to substitute the para-hydroxyl of monolignols might well interfere with the synthesis of lignin. The phylogeny of plant phenolic O-methyltransferases points to the existence of a batch of evolutionarily 'plastic' amino acid residues. Following one amino acid at a time path of directed evolution, and using the strategy of structure-based iterative site-saturation mutagenesis, we created a novel monolignol 4-O-methyltransferase from the enzyme responsible for methylating phenylpropenes. We show that two plastic residues in the active site of the parental enzyme are vital in dominating substrate discrimination. Mutations at either one of these separate the evolutionarily tightly linked properties of substrate specificity and regioselective methylation of native O-methyltransferase, thereby conferring the ability for para-methylation of the lignin monomeric precursors, primarily monolignols. Beneficial mutations at both sites have an additive effect. By further optimizing enzyme activity, we generated a triple mutant variant that may structurally constitute a novel phenolic substrate binding pocket, leading to its high binding affinity and catalytic efficiency on monolignols. The 4-O-methoxylation of monolignol efficiently impairs oxidative radical coupling in vitro, highlighting the potential for applying this novel enzyme in managing lignin polymerization in planta.

  11. Catechol-O-methyltransferase: characteristics, polymorphisms and role in breast cancer

    PubMed Central

    Yager, James D.

    2013-01-01

    Catechol estrogens are carcinogenic, probably because of their estrogenicity and potential for further oxidative metabolism to reactive quinones. Estrogenic quinones cause oxidative DNA damage as well as form mutagenic depurinating adenine and guanine adducts. O-Methylation by catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) blocks their estrogenicity and prevents their oxidation to quinones. A single gene encodes both membrane bound (MB) and soluble (S) forms of COMT. The COMT gene contains 34 single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs). The valine108 (S-COMT)/158 (MB-COMT) SNP encodes a low activity form of COMT and has been widely studied as a putative risk factor for breast cancer, with inconsistent results. Investigations of two other SNPs in the promoter of MB-COMT that may affect its expression have also provided mixed results. Future studies on the role of COMT in breast cancer should incorporate measurement of biomarkers that reflect COMT activity and its protective effects. PMID:23734165

  12. Structure and expression of the lignin O-methyltransferase gene from Zea mays L.

    PubMed

    Collazo, P; Montoliu, L; Puigdomènech, P; Rigau, J

    1992-12-01

    The isolation and characterization of cDNA and homologous genomic clones encoding the lignin O-methyltransferase (OMT) from maize is reported. The cDNA clone has been isolated by differential screening of maize root cDNA library. Southern analysis indicates that a single gene codes for this protein. The genomic sequence contains a single 916 bp intron. The deduced protein sequence from DNA shares significant homology with the recently reported lignin-bispecific caffeic acid/5-hydroxyferulic OMTs from alfalfa and aspen. It also shares homology with OMTs from bovine pineal glands and a purple non-sulfur photosynthetic bacterium. The mRNA of this gene is present at different levels in distinct organs of the plant with the highest accumulation detected in the elongation zone of roots. Bacterial extracts from clones containing the maize OMT cDNA show an activity in methylation of caffeic acid to ferulic acid comparable to that existing in the plant extracts. These results indicate that the described gene encodes the caffeic acid 3-O-methyltransferase (COMT) involved in the lignin bio-synthesis of maize. PMID:1463825

  13. Plant isoflavone and isoflavanone O-methyltransferase genes

    DOEpatents

    Broeckling, Bettina E.; Liu, Chang-Jun; Dixon, Richard A.

    2014-08-19

    The invention provides enzymes that encode O-methyltransferases (OMTs) from Medicago truncatula that allow modification to plant (iso)flavonoid biosynthetic pathways. In certain aspects of the invention, the genes encoding these enzymes are provided. The invention therefore allows the modification of plants for isoflavonoid content. Transgenic plants comprising such enzymes are also provided, as well as methods for improving disease resistance in plants. Methods for producing food and nutraceuticals, and the resulting compositions, are also provided.

  14. Synthesis on accumulation of putative neurotransmitters by cultured neural crest cells

    SciTech Connect

    Maxwell, G.D.; Sietz, P.D.; Rafford, C.E.

    1982-07-01

    The events mediating the differentiation of embryonic neural crest cells into several types of neurons are incompletely understood. In order to probe one aspect of this differentiation, we have examined the capacity of cultured quail trunk neural crest cells to synthesize, from radioactive precursors, and store several putative neurotransmitter compounds. These neural crest cultures develop the capacity to synthesize and accumulate acetylcholine and the catecholamines norepinephrine and dopamine. In contrast, detectable but relatively little synthesis and accumulation of 5-hydroxytryptamine gamma-aminobutyric acid, or octopamine from the appropriate radiolabeled precursors were observed. The capacity for synthesis and accumulation of radiolabeled acetylcholine and catecholamines is very low or absent at 2 days in vitro. Between 3 and 7 days in vitro, there is a marked rise in both catecholamine and acetylcholine accumulation in the cultures. These findings suggest that, under the particular conditions used in these experiments, the development of neurotransmitter biosynthesis in trunk neural crest cells ijs restricted and resembles, at least partially, the pattern observed in vivo. The development of this capacity to synthesize and store radiolabeled acetylcholine and catecholamines from the appropriate radioactive precursors coincides closely with the development of the activities of the synthetic enzymes choline acetyltransferase and dopamine beta-hydroxylase reported by others.

  15. Characterization of three O-methyltransferases involved in noscapine biosynthesis in opium poppy.

    PubMed

    Dang, Thu-Thuy T; Facchini, Peter J

    2012-06-01

    Noscapine is a benzylisoquinoline alkaloid produced in opium poppy (Papaver somniferum) and other members of the Papaveraceae. It has been used as a cough suppressant and more recently was shown to possess anticancer activity. However, the biosynthesis of noscapine in opium poppy has not been established. A proposed pathway leading from (S)-reticuline to noscapine includes (S)-scoulerine, (S)-canadine, and (S)-N-methylcanadine as intermediates. Stem cDNA libraries and latex extracts of eight opium poppy cultivars displaying different alkaloid profiles were subjected to massively parallel pyrosequencing and liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry, respectively. Comparative transcript and metabolite profiling revealed the occurrence of three cDNAs encoding O-methyltransferases designated as SOMT1, SOMT2, and SOMT3 that correlated with the accumulation of noscapine in the eight cultivars. SOMT transcripts were detected in all opium poppy organs but were most abundant in aerial organs, where noscapine primarily accumulates. SOMT2 and SOMT3 showed strict substrate specificity and regiospecificity as 9-O-methyltransferases targeting (S)-scoulerine. In contrast, SOMT1 was able to sequentially 9- and 2-O-methylate (S)-scoulerine, yielding (S)-tetrahydropalmatine. SOMT1 also sequentially 3'- and 7-O-methylated both (S)-norreticuline and (S)-reticuline with relatively high substrate affinity, yielding (S)-tetrahydropapaverine and (S)-laudanosine, respectively. The metabolic functions of SOMT1, SOMT2, and SOMT3 were investigated in planta using virus-induced gene silencing. Reduction of SOMT1 or SOMT2 transcript levels resulted in a significant decrease in noscapine accumulation. Reduced SOMT1 transcript levels also caused a decrease in papaverine accumulation, confirming the selective roles for these enzymes in the biosynthesis of both alkaloids in opium poppy. PMID:22535422

  16. Structural characterization of the mitomycin 7-O-methyltransferase

    SciTech Connect

    Singh, Shanteri; Chang, Aram; Goff, Randal D.; Bingman, Craig A.; Grüschow, Sabine; Sherman, David H.; Phillips, Jr., George N.; Thorson, Jon S.

    2014-10-02

    Mitomycins are quinone-containing antibiotics, widely used as antitumor drugs in chemotherapy. Mitomycin-7-O-methyltransferase (MmcR), a key tailoring enzyme involved in the biosynthesis of mitomycin in Streptomyces lavendulae, catalyzes the 7-O-methylation of both C9{beta}- and C9{alpha}-configured 7-hydroxymitomycins. We have determined the crystal structures of the MmcR-S-adenosylhomocysteine (SAH) binary complex and MmcR-SAH-mitomycin A (MMA) ternary complex at resolutions of 1.9 and 2.3 {angstrom}, respectively. The study revealed MmcR to adopt a common S-adenosyl-L-methionine-dependent O-methyltransferase fold and the presence of a structurally conserved active site general acid-base pair is consistent with a proton-assisted methyltransfer common to most methyltransferases. Given the importance of C7 alkylation to modulate mitomycin redox potential, this study may also present a template toward the future engineering of catalysts to generate uniquely bioactive mitomycins.

  17. Catechol-O-methyltransferase decreases levodopa toxicity in vitro.

    PubMed

    Offen, D; Panet, H; Galili-Mosberg, R; Melamed, E

    2001-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to examine the effects of 3-O-methylation by catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) on the toxicity of levodopa in neuronal cultures. High concentrations of levodopa are toxic in vitro. Therefore, there is concern that long-term treatment with levodopa in patients with Parkinson's disease might accelerate the rate of degeneration of nigrostriatal neurons. However, recent studies have suggested that, while levodopa is harmful in vitro, it may not be toxic in vivo. A possible defense mechanism is by means of metabolic shunting of levodopa excess to 3-O-methyldopa by COMT in peripheral and central nervous system tissues. In this study we examine whether the use of COMT inhibitor, which reduced the levels of 3-O-methyldopa, affect levodopa toxicity. Mice cerebellar granule neurons, PC12, and neuroblastoma cells were used, and their viability following exposure to levodopa and COMT with and without tolcapone, a COMT inhibitor, was measured by neutral red staining. Auto-oxidation of levodopa was evaluated using a spectrophotometer (690 nm). We found that 3-O-methyldopa, unlike levodopa, was not toxic to all cells examined. Addition of purified COMT to levodopa prevented its auto-oxidation and markedly attenuated its cytotoxicity in vitro. Additional tolcapone reversed the protective effect of COMT. The agent 3-O-methyldopa is not toxic to cell cultures. Catechol-O-methyltransferase attenuates toxicity of levodopa in vitro by its metabolism to nontoxic 3-O-methyldopa. PMID:11290879

  18. Melatonin production in Escherichia coli by dual expression of serotonin N-acetyltransferase and caffeic acid O-methyltransferase.

    PubMed

    Byeon, Yeong; Back, Kyoungwhan

    2016-08-01

    Melatonin is a well-known bioactive molecule produced in animals and plants and a well-studied natural compound. Two enzymatic steps are required for the biosynthesis of melatonin from serotonin. First, serotonin N-acetyltransferase (SNAT) catalyzes serotonin to N-acetylserotonin (NAS) followed by the action of N-acetylserotonin O-methyltransferase (ASMT), resulting in the synthesis of O-methylated NAS, also known as melatonin. Attempts to document melatonin production in Escherichia coli have been unsuccessful to date due to either low enzyme activity or inactive ASMT expression. Here, we employed caffeic acid O-methyltransferase (COMT) instead of ASMT, as COMT is a multifunctional enzyme that has ASMT activity as well. Among several combinations of dual expression cassettes, recombinant E. coli that expressed sheep SNAT with rice COMT produced a high quantity of melatonin, which was measured in a culture medium (1.46 mg/L in response to 1 mM serotonin). This level was several orders of magnitude higher than that produced in transgenic rice and tomato overexpressing sheep SNAT and ASMT, respectively. This heterologous expression system can be widely employed to screen various putative SNAT or ASMT genes from animals and plants as well as to overproduce melatonin in various useful microorganisms. PMID:27005412

  19. Daphnetin methylation by a novel O-methyltransferase is associated with cold acclimation and photosystem II excitation pressure in rye.

    PubMed

    NDong, Christian; Anzellotti, Dominique; Ibrahim, Ragai K; Huner, Norman P A; Sarhan, Fathey

    2003-02-28

    In plants, O-methylation of phenolic compounds plays an important role in such processes as lignin synthesis, flower pigmentation, chemical defense, and signaling. However, apart from phenylpropanoids and flavonoids, very few enzymes involved in coumarin biosynthesis have been identified. We report here the molecular and biochemical characterization of a gene encoding a novel O-methyltransferase that catalyzes the methylation of 7,8-dihydroxycoumarin, daphnetin. The recombinant protein displayed an exclusive methylation of position 8 of daphnetin. The identity of the methylated product was unambiguously identified as 7-hydroxy-8-methoxycoumarin by co-chromatography on cellulose TLC and coelution from high performance liquid chromatography, with authentic synthetic samples, as well as by UV, mass spectroscopy, (1)H NMR spectral analysis, and NOE correlation signals of the relevant protons. Northern blot analysis and enzyme activity assays revealed that the transcript and corresponding enzyme activity are up-regulated by both low temperature and photosystem II excitation pressure. Using various phenylpropanoid and flavonoid substrates, we demonstrate that cold acclimation of rye leaves increases O-methyltransferase activity not only for daphnetin but also for the lignin precursors, caffeic acid, and 5-hydroxyferulic acid. The significance of this novel enzyme and daphnetin O-methylation is discussed in relation to its putative role in modulating cold acclimation and photosystem II excitation pressure. PMID:12480941

  20. Predicting the substrates of cloned plant O-methyltransferases.

    PubMed

    Schröder, Gudrun; Wehinger, Elke; Schröder, Joachim

    2002-01-01

    Plant O-methyltransferases (OMTs) have important roles in secondary metabolite biosynthesis. Sequencing projects and homology-based cloning strategies yield sequences for proteins with similarities to known OMTs, but the identification of the physiological substrates is not trivial. We investigated with a cDNA cloned from Catharanthus roseus the possibilities for predicting the substrates of OMTs, using the information from previous work and two newly identified motifs that were based on information from the crystal structures of two plant OMTs. The results, confirmed by functional analysis of the recombinant protein, indicated that a careful analysis of the deduced protein sequence can provide clues for predicting the substrates of cloned OMTs. PMID:11754938

  1. Purification and Identification of Naringenin 7-O-Methyltransferase, a Key Enzyme in Biosynthesis of Flavonoid Phytoalexin Sakuranetin in Rice*

    PubMed Central

    Shimizu, Takafumi; Lin, Fengqiu; Hasegawa, Morifumi; Okada, Kazunori; Nojiri, Hideaki; Yamane, Hisakazu

    2012-01-01

    Sakuranetin, the major flavonoid phytoalexin in rice, is induced by ultraviolet (UV) irradiation, CuCl2 treatment, jasmonic acid treatment, and infection by phytopathogens. It was recently demonstrated that sakuranetin has anti-inflammatory activity, anti-mutagenic activity, anti-pathogenic activities against Helicobacter pylori, Leishmania, and Trypanosoma and contributes to the maintenance of glucose homeostasis in animals. Thus, sakuranetin is a useful compound as a plant antibiotic and a potential pharmaceutical agent. Sakuranetin is biosynthesized from naringenin by naringenin 7-O-methyltransferase (NOMT). In previous research, rice NOMT (OsNOMT) was purified to apparent homogeneity from UV-treated wild-type rice leaves, but the purified protein, named OsCOMT1, exhibited caffeic acid O-methyltransferase (COMT) activity and not NOMT activity. In this study, we found that OsCOMT1 does not contribute to sakuranetin production in rice in vivo, and we purified OsNOMT using the oscomt1 mutant. A crude protein preparation from UV-treated oscomt1 leaves was subjected to three sequential purification steps, resulting in a 400-fold purification from the crude enzyme preparation. Using SDS-PAGE, the purest enzyme preparation showed a minor band at an apparent molecular mass of 40 kDa. Two O-methyltransferase-like proteins, encoded by Os04g0175900 and Os12g0240900, were identified from the 40-kDa band by MALDI-TOF/TOF analysis. Recombinant Os12g0240900 protein showed NOMT activity, but the recombinant Os04g0175900 protein did not. Os12g0240900 expression was induced by jasmonic acid treatment in rice leaves prior to sakuranetin accumulation, and the Os12g0240900 protein showed reasonable kinetic properties to OsNOMT. On the basis of these results, we conclude that Os12g0240900 encodes an OsNOMT. PMID:22493492

  2. Overexpression of Coptis japonica norcoclaurine 6-O-methyltransferase overcomes the rate-limiting step in Benzylisoquinoline alkaloid biosynthesis in cultured Eschscholzia californica.

    PubMed

    Inui, Takayuki; Tamura, Ken-Ichi; Fujii, Nanae; Morishige, Takashi; Sato, Fumihiko

    2007-02-01

    Benzylisoquinoline alkaloids are one of the most important secondary metabolite groups, and include the economically important analgesic morphine and the antimicrobial agent berberine. To improve the production of these alkaloids, we investigated the effect of the overexpression of putative rate-limiting step enzymes in benzylisoquinoline alkaloid biosynthesis. We introduced two O-methyltransferase [Coptis japonica norcoclaurine 6-O-methyltransferase (6OMT) and 3'-hydroxy-N-methylcoclaurine 4'-O-methyltransferase (4'OMT)] expression vectors into cultured California poppy cells to avoid the gene silencing effect of endogenous genes. We established 20 independent lines for 6OMT transformants and 15 independent lines for 4'OMT transformants. HPLC/liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry (LC-MS) analysis revealed that the overexpression of C. japonica 6OMT was associated with an average alkaloid content 7.5 times greater than that in the wild type, whereas the overexpression of C. japonica 4'OMT had only a marginal effect. Further characterization of 6OMT in California poppy cells indicated that a 6OMT-specific gene is missing and 4OMT catalyzes the 6OMT reaction with low activity in California poppy, which supports the notion that the 6OMT reaction is important for alkaloid biosynthesis in this plant species. We discuss the importance of 6OMT in benzylisoquinoline alkaloid biosynthesis and the potential for using a rate-limiting step gene to improve alkaloid production. PMID:17189286

  3. Preliminary characterization of (nucleoside-2′-O-)-methyltransferase crystals from Meaban and Yokose flaviviruses

    SciTech Connect

    Mastrangelo, Eloise; Bollati, Michela; Milani, Mario; Lamballeire, Xavier de; Brisbare, Nadege; Dalle, Karen; Lantez, Violaine; Egloff, Marie-Pierre; Coutard, Bruno; Canard, Bruno; Gould, Ernest; Forrester, Naomi; Bolognesi, Martino

    2006-08-01

    Two methyltransferases from flaviviruses (Meaban and Yokose viruses) have been overexpressed and crystallized. Diffraction data and characterization of the two crystal forms are presented, together with a preliminary molecular-replacement solution for both enzymes. Viral methyltranferases (MTase) are involved in the third step of the mRNA-capping process, transferring a methyl group from S-adenosyl-l-methionine (SAM) to the capped mRNA. MTases are classified into two groups: (guanine-N7)-methyltransferases (N7MTases), which add a methyl group onto the N7 atom of guanine, and (nucleoside-2′-O-)-methyltransferases (2′OMTases), which add a methyl group to a ribose hydroxyl. The MTases of two flaviviruses, Meaban and Yokose viruses, have been overexpressed, purified and crystallized in complex with SAM. Characterization of the crystals together with details of preliminary X-ray diffraction data collection (at 2.8 and 2.7 Å resolution, respectively) are reported here. The sequence homology relative to Dengue virus 2′OMTase and the structural conservation of specific residues in the putative active sites suggest that both enzymes belong to the 2′OMTase subgroup.

  4. Characterization of NF-kB-mediated inhibition of catechol-O-methyltransferase

    PubMed Central

    Tchivileva, Inna E; Nackley, Andrea G; Qian, Li; Wentworth, Sean; Conrad, Matthew; Diatchenko, Luda B

    2009-01-01

    Background Catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT), an enzyme that metabolizes catecholamines, has recently been implicated in the modulation of pain. Specifically, low COMT activity is associated with heightened pain perception and development of musculoskeletal pain in humans as well as increased experimental pain sensitivity in rodents. Results We report that the proinflammatory cytokine tumor necrosis factor α (TNFα) downregulates COMT mRNA and protein in astrocytes. Examination of the distal COMT promoter (P2-COMT) reveals a putative binding site for nuclear factor κB (NF-κB), the pivotal regulator of inflammation and the target of TNFα. Cell culture assays and functional deletion analyses of the cloned P2-COMT promoter demonstrate that TNFα inhibits P2-COMT activity in astrocytes by inducing NF-κB complex recruitment to the specific κB binding site. Conclusion Collectively, our findings provide the first evidence for NF-κB-mediated inhibition of COMT expression in the central nervous system, suggesting that COMT contributes to the pathogenesis of inflammatory pain states. PMID:19291302

  5. The role of catechol-O-methyltransferase in reward processing and addiction.

    PubMed

    Tunbridge, E M; Huber, A; Farrell, S M; Stumpenhorst, K; Harrison, P J; Walton, M E

    2012-05-01

    Catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) catabolises dopamine and is important for regulating dopamine levels in the prefrontal cortex. Consistent with its regulation of prefrontal cortex dopamine, COMT modulates working memory and executive function; however, its significance for other cognitive domains, and in other brain regions, remains relatively unexplored. One such example is reward processing, for which dopamine is a critical mediator, and in which the striatum and corticostriatal circuitry are implicated. Here, we discuss emerging data which links COMT to reward processing, review what is known of the underlying neural substrates, and consider whether COMT is a good therapeutic target for treating addiction. Although a limited number of studies have investigated COMT and reward processing, common findings are beginning to emerge. COMT appears to modulate cortical and striatal activation during both reward anticipation and delivery, and to impact on reward-related learning and its underlying neural circuitry. COMT has been studied as a candidate gene for numerous reward-related phenotypes and there is some preliminary evidence linking it with certain aspects of addiction. However, additional studies are required before these associations can be considered robust. It is premature to consider COMT a good therapeutic target for addiction, but this hypothesis should be revisited as further information emerges. In particular, it will be critical to reveal the precise neurobiological mechanisms underlying links between COMT and reward processing, and the extent to which these relate to the putative associations with addiction. PMID:22483300

  6. Ischemia induces partial loss of surface membrane polarity and accumulation of putative calcium ionophores.

    PubMed Central

    Molitoris, B A; Wilson, P D; Schrier, R W; Simon, F R

    1985-01-01

    and cytochemically was located within ischemic BBM. We propose that ischemia impairs the ability of cells to maintain surface membrane polarity, and also results in the accumulation of putative calcium ionophores. Images PMID:3001141

  7. Mapping the conformational space accessible to catechol-O-methyltransferase.

    PubMed

    Ehler, Andreas; Benz, Jörg; Schlatter, Daniel; Rudolph, Markus G

    2014-08-01

    Methylation catalysed by catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) is the main pathway of catechol neurotransmitter deactivation in the prefrontal cortex. Low levels of this class of neurotransmitters are held to be causative of diseases such as schizophrenia, depression and Parkinson's disease. Inhibition of COMT may increase neurotransmitter levels, thus offering a route for treatment. Structure-based drug design hitherto seems to be based on the closed enzyme conformation. Here, a set of apo, semi-holo, holo and Michaelis form crystal structures are described that define the conformational space available to COMT and that include likely intermediates along the catalytic pathway. Domain swaps and sizeable loop movements around the active site testify to the flexibility of this enzyme, rendering COMT a difficult drug target. The low affinity of the co-substrate S-adenosylmethionine and the large conformational changes involved during catalysis highlight significant energetic investment to achieve the closed conformation. Since each conformation of COMT is a bona fide target for inhibitors, other states than the closed conformation may be promising to address. Crystallographic data for an alternative avenue of COMT inhibition, i.e. locking of the apo state by an inhibitor, are presented. The set of COMT structures may prove to be useful for the development of novel classes of inhibitors. PMID:25084335

  8. Molecular Cloning and Functional Characterization of a Novel Isoflavone 3'-O-methyltransferase from Pueraria lobata.

    PubMed

    Li, Jia; Li, Changfu; Gou, Junbo; Zhang, Yansheng

    2016-01-01

    Pueraria lobata roots accumulate 3'-, 4'- and 7-O-methylated isoflavones and many of these methylated compounds exhibit various pharmacological activities. Either the 4'- or 7-O-methylation activity has been investigated at molecular levels in several legume species. However, the gene encoding the isoflavone 3'-O-methyltransferase (OMT) has not yet been isolated from any plant species. In this study, we reported the first cDNA encoding the isoflavone 3'-OMT from P. lobata (designated PlOMT4). Heterologous expressions in yeast and Escherichia coli cells showed that the gene product exhibits an enzyme activity to methylate the 3'-hydroxy group of the isoflavone substrate. The transcript abundance of PlOMT4 matches well with its enzymatic product in different organs of P. lobata and in the plant roots in response to methyl jasmonate elicitation. Integration of the biochemical with metabolic and transcript data supported the proposed function of PlOMT4. The identification of PlOMT4 would not only help to understand the isoflavonoid metabolism in P. lobata but also potentially provide an enzyme catalyst for methylating existing drug candidates to improve their hydrophobicity. PMID:27458460

  9. Methylation mediated by an anthocyanin, O-methyltransferase, is involved in purple flower coloration in Paeonia

    PubMed Central

    Du, Hui; Wu, Jie; Ji, Kui-Xian; Zeng, Qing-Yin; Bhuiya, Mohammad-Wadud; Su, Shang; Shu, Qing-Yan; Ren, Hong-Xu; Liu, Zheng-An; Wang, Liang-Sheng

    2015-01-01

    Anthocyanins are major pigments in plants. Methylation plays a role in the diversity and stability of anthocyanins. However, the contribution of anthocyanin methylation to flower coloration is still unclear. We identified two homologous anthocyanin O-methyltransferase (AOMT) genes from purple-flowered (PsAOMT) and red-flowered (PtAOMT) Paeonia plants, and we performed functional analyses of the two genes in vitro and in vivo. The critical amino acids for AOMT catalytic activity were studied by site-directed mutagenesis. We showed that the recombinant proteins, PsAOMT and PtAOMT, had identical substrate preferences towards anthocyanins. The methylation activity of PsAOMT was 60 times higher than that of PtAOMT in vitro. Interestingly, this vast difference in catalytic activity appeared to result from a single amino acid residue substitution at position 87 (arginine to leucine). There were significant differences between the 35S::PsAOMT transgenic tobacco and control flowers in relation to their chromatic parameters, which further confirmed the function of PsAOMT in vivo. The expression levels of the two homologous AOMT genes were consistent with anthocyanin accumulation in petals. We conclude that AOMTs are responsible for the methylation of cyanidin glycosides in Paeonia plants and play an important role in purple coloration in Paeonia spp. PMID:26208646

  10. Phenolic Profiling of Caffeic Acid O-Methyltransferase-Deficient Poplar Reveals Novel Benzodioxane Oligolignols1

    PubMed Central

    Morreel, Kris; Ralph, John; Lu, Fachuang; Goeminne, Geert; Busson, Roger; Herdewijn, Piet; Goeman, Jan L.; Van der Eycken, Johan; Boerjan, Wout; Messens, Eric

    2004-01-01

    Caffeic acid O-methyltransferase (COMT) catalyzes preferentially the methylation of 5-hydroxyconiferaldehyde to sinapaldehyde in monolignol biosynthesis. Here, we have compared HPLC profiles of the methanol-soluble phenolics fraction of xylem tissue from COMT-deficient and control poplars (Populus spp.), using statistical analysis of the peak heights. COMT down-regulation results in significant concentration differences for 25 of the 91 analyzed peaks. Eight peaks were exclusively detected in COMT-deficient poplar, of which four could be purified for further identification using mass spectrometry/mass spectrometry, nuclear magnetic resonance, and spiking of synthesized reference compounds. These new compounds were derived from 5-hydroxyconiferyl alcohol or 5-hydroxyconiferaldehyde and were characterized by benzodioxane moieties, a structural type that is also increased in the lignins of COMT-deficient plants. One of these four benzodioxanes amounted to the most abundant oligolignol in the HPLC profile. Furthermore, all of the differentially accumulating oligolignols involving sinapyl units were either reduced in abundance or undetectable. The concentration levels of all identified oligolignols were in agreement with the relative supply of monolignols and with their chemical coupling propensities, which supports the random coupling hypothesis. Chiral HPLC analysis of the most abundant benzodioxane dimer revealed the presence of both enantiomers in equal amounts, indicating that they were formed by radical coupling reactions under simple chemical control rather than guided by dirigent proteins. PMID:15563622

  11. Molecular Cloning and Characterization of O-Methyltransferase from Mango Fruit (Mangifera indica cv. Alphonso).

    PubMed

    Chidley, Hemangi G; Oak, Pranjali S; Deshpande, Ashish B; Pujari, Keshav H; Giri, Ashok P; Gupta, Vidya S

    2016-05-01

    Flavour of ripe Alphonso mango is invariably dominated by the de novo appearance of lactones and furanones during ripening. Of these, furanones comprising furaneol (4-hydroxy-2,5-dimethyl-3(2H)-furanone) and mesifuran (2,5-dimethyl-4-methoxy-3(2H)-furanone) are of particular importance due to their sweet, fruity caramel-like flavour characters and low odour detection thresholds. We isolated a 1056 bp complete open reading frame of a cDNA encoding S-adenosyl-L-methionine-dependent O-methyltransferase from Alphonso mango. The recombinantly expressed enzyme, MiOMTS showed substrate specificity towards furaneol and protocatechuic aldehyde synthesizing mesifuran and vanillin, respectively, in an in vitro assay reaction. A semi-quantitative PCR analysis showed fruit-specific expression of MiOMTS transcripts. Quantitative real-time PCR displayed ripening-related expression pattern of MiOMTS in both pulp and skin of Alphonso mango. Also, early and significantly enhanced accumulation of its transcripts was detected in pulp and skin of ethylene-treated fruits. Ripening-related and fruit-specific expression profile of MiOMTS and substrate specificity towards furaneol is a suggestive of its involvement in the synthesis of mesifuran in Alphonso mango. Moreover, a significant trigger in the expression of MiOMTS transcripts in ethylene-treated fruits point towards the transcriptional regulation of mesifuran biosynthesis by ethylene. PMID:27039187

  12. Methylation mediated by an anthocyanin, O-methyltransferase, is involved in purple flower coloration in Paeonia.

    PubMed

    Du, Hui; Wu, Jie; Ji, Kui-Xian; Zeng, Qing-Yin; Bhuiya, Mohammad-Wadud; Su, Shang; Shu, Qing-Yan; Ren, Hong-Xu; Liu, Zheng-An; Wang, Liang-Sheng

    2015-11-01

    Anthocyanins are major pigments in plants. Methylation plays a role in the diversity and stability of anthocyanins. However, the contribution of anthocyanin methylation to flower coloration is still unclear. We identified two homologous anthocyanin O-methyltransferase (AOMT) genes from purple-flowered (PsAOMT) and red-flowered (PtAOMT) Paeonia plants, and we performed functional analyses of the two genes in vitro and in vivo. The critical amino acids for AOMT catalytic activity were studied by site-directed mutagenesis. We showed that the recombinant proteins, PsAOMT and PtAOMT, had identical substrate preferences towards anthocyanins. The methylation activity of PsAOMT was 60 times higher than that of PtAOMT in vitro. Interestingly, this vast difference in catalytic activity appeared to result from a single amino acid residue substitution at position 87 (arginine to leucine). There were significant differences between the 35S::PsAOMT transgenic tobacco and control flowers in relation to their chromatic parameters, which further confirmed the function of PsAOMT in vivo. The expression levels of the two homologous AOMT genes were consistent with anthocyanin accumulation in petals. We conclude that AOMTs are responsible for the methylation of cyanidin glycosides in Paeonia plants and play an important role in purple coloration in Paeonia spp. PMID:26208646

  13. Catechol-O-methyltransferase val158met Polymorphism Interacts with Sex to Affect Face Recognition Ability

    PubMed Central

    Lamb, Yvette N.; McKay, Nicole S.; Singh, Shrimal S.; Waldie, Karen E.; Kirk, Ian J.

    2016-01-01

    The catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) val158met polymorphism affects the breakdown of synaptic dopamine. Consequently, this polymorphism has been associated with a variety of neurophysiological and behavioral outcomes. Some of the effects have been found to be sex-specific and it appears estrogen may act to down-regulate the activity of the COMT enzyme. The dopaminergic system has been implicated in face recognition, a form of cognition for which a female advantage has typically been reported. This study aimed to investigate potential joint effects of sex and COMT genotype on face recognition. A sample of 142 university students was genotyped and assessed using the Faces I subtest of the Wechsler Memory Scale – Third Edition (WMS-III). A significant two-way interaction between sex and COMT genotype on face recognition performance was found. Of the male participants, COMT val homozygotes and heterozygotes had significantly lower scores than met homozygotes. Scores did not differ between genotypes for female participants. While male val homozygotes had significantly lower scores than female val homozygotes, no sex differences were observed in the heterozygotes and met homozygotes. This study contributes to the accumulating literature documenting sex-specific effects of the COMT polymorphism by demonstrating a COMT-sex interaction for face recognition, and is consistent with a role for dopamine in face recognition. PMID:27445927

  14. Catechol-O-methyltransferase association with hemoglobin A1c

    PubMed Central

    Hall, Kathryn T.; Jablonski, Kathleen A.; Chen, Ling; Harden, Maegan; Tolkin, Benjamin R.; Kaptchuk, Ted J.; Bray, George A.; Ridker, Paul M.; Florez, Jose C.; Chasman, Daniel I.

    2016-01-01

    Aims Catecholamines have metabolic effects on blood pressure, insulin sensitivity and blood glucose. Genetic variation in catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT), an enzyme that degrades catecholamines, is associated with cardiometabolic risk factors and incident cardiovascular disease (CVD). Here we examined COMT effects on glycemic function and type 2 diabetes. Methods We tested whether COMT polymorphisms were associated with baseline HbA1c in the Women’s Genome Health Study (WGHS), and Meta-Analyses of Glucose and Insulin-related traits Consortium (MAGIC), and with susceptibility to type 2 diabetes in WGHS, DIAbetes Genetics Replication And Meta-analysis consortium (DIAGRAM), and the Diabetes Prevention Program (DPP). Given evidence that COMT modifies some drug responses, we examined association with type 2 diabetes and randomized metformin and aspirin treatment. Results COMT rs4680 high-activity G-allele was associated with lower HbA1c in WGHS (β = −0.032% [0.012], p = 0.008) and borderline significant in MAGIC (β = −0.006% [0.003], p = 0.07). Combined COMT per val allele effects on type 2 diabetes were significant (OR = 0.98 [0.96–0.998], p = 0.03) in fixed-effects analyses across WGHS, DIAGRAM, and DPP. Similar results were obtained for 2 other COMT SNPs rs4818 and rs4633. In the DPP, the rs4680 val allele was borderline associated with lower diabetes incidence among participants randomized to metformin (HR = 0.81 [0.65–1.00], p = 0.05). Conclusions COMT rs4680 high-activity G-allele was associated with lower HbA1c and modest protection from type 2 diabetes. The directionality of COMT associations was concordant with those previously observed for cardiometabolic risk factors and CVD. PMID:27282867

  15. Polymorphisms in O-methyltransferase genes are associated with stover cell wall digestibility in European maize (Zea mays L.)

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background OMT (O-methyltransferase) genes are involved in lignin biosynthesis, which relates to stover cell wall digestibility. Reduced lignin content is an important determinant of both forage quality and ethanol conversion efficiency of maize stover. Results Variation in genomic sequences coding for COMT, CCoAOMT1, and CCoAOMT2 was analyzed in relation to stover cell wall digestibility for a panel of 40 European forage maize inbred lines, and re-analyzed for a panel of 34 lines from a published French study. Different methodologies for association analysis were performed and compared. Across association methodologies, a total number of 25, 12, 1, 6 COMT polymorphic sites were significantly associated with DNDF, OMD, NDF, and WSC, respectively. Association analysis for CCoAOMT1 and CCoAOMT2 identified substantially fewer polymorphic sites (3 and 2, respectively) associated with the investigated traits. Our re-analysis on the 34 lines from a published French dataset identified 14 polymorphic sites significantly associated with cell wall digestibility, two of them were consistent with our study. Promising polymorphisms putatively causally associated with variability of cell wall digestibility were inferred from the total number of significantly associated SNPs/Indels. Conclusions Several polymorphic sites for three O-methyltransferase loci were associated with stover cell wall digestibility. All three tested genes seem to be involved in controlling DNDF, in particular COMT. Thus, considerable variation among Bm3 wildtype alleles can be exploited for improving cell-wall digestibility. Target sites for functional markers were identified enabling development of efficient marker-based selection strategies. PMID:20152036

  16. Tonoplast Sugar Transporters (SbTSTs) putatively control sucrose accumulation in sweet sorghum stems

    PubMed Central

    Bihmidine, Saadia; Julius, Benjamin T; Dweikat, Ismail; Braun, David M

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT Carbohydrates are differentially partitioned in sweet versus grain sorghums. While the latter preferentially accumulate starch in the grain, the former primarily store large amounts of sucrose in the stem. Previous work determined that neither sucrose metabolizing enzymes nor changes in Sucrose transporter (SUT) gene expression accounted for the carbohydrate partitioning differences. Recently, 2 additional classes of sucrose transport proteins, Tonoplast Sugar Transporters (TSTs) and SWEETs, were identified; thus, we examined whether their expression tracked sucrose accumulation in sweet sorghum stems. We determined 2 TSTs were differentially expressed in sweet vs. grain sorghum stems, likely underlying the massive difference in sucrose accumulation. A model illustrating potential roles for different classes of sugar transport proteins in sorghum sugar partitioning is discussed. PMID:26619184

  17. Identification of putative silicon transporters in the low accumulators N. tabacum and S. lycopersicum

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Silicon (Si) has long been excluded from the list of essential elements based on a definition developed over 60 years ago. However, how can one deem an element “non-essential” if through millennia of adaptation a fundamental pathway of perception and accumulation leading to molecular changes within...

  18. Brain catecholamine metabolism in catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT)-deficient mice.

    PubMed

    Huotari, Marko; Gogos, Joseph A; Karayiorgou, Maria; Koponen, Olli; Forsberg, Markus; Raasmaja, Atso; Hyttinen, Juha; Männistö, Pekka T

    2002-01-01

    Catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) catalyses the O-methylation of compounds having a catechol structure and its main function involves the elimination of biologically active or toxic catechols and their metabolites. By means of homologous recombination in embryonic stem cells, a strain of mice has been produced in which the gene encoding the COMT enzyme is disrupted. We report here the levels of catecholamines and their metabolites in striatal extracellular fluid in these mice as well as in homogenates from different parts of the brain, under normal conditions and after acute levodopa administration. In immunoblotting studies, COMT-knockout mice had no COMT protein in brain or kidney tissues but the amounts of catecholamine synthesizing and other metabolizing enzyme proteins were normal. Under normal conditions, COMT deficiency does not appear to affect significantly brain dopamine and noradrenaline levels in spite of relevant changes in their metabolites. This finding is consistent with previous pharmacological studies with COMT inhibitors and confirms the pivotal role of synaptic reuptake processes and monoamine oxidase-dependent metabolism in terminating the actions of catecholamines at nerve terminals. In contrast, when COMT-deficient mice are challenged with l-dihydroxyphenylalanine, they show an extensive accumulation of 3,4-dihydroxyphenylacetic acid and dihydroxyphenylglycol and even dopamine, revealing an important role for COMT under such situations. Notably, in some cases these changes appear to be Comt gene dosage-dependent, brain-region specific and sexually dimorphic. Our results may have implications for improving the treatment of Parkinson's disease and for understanding the contribution of the natural variation in COMT activity to psychiatric phenotypes. PMID:11849292

  19. Functional characterization of cinnamyl alcohol dehydrogenase and caffeic acid O-methyltransferase in Brachypodium distachyon.

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Lignin is a significant recalcitrant in the conversion of plant biomass to bioethanol. Cinnamyl alcohol dehydrogenase (CAD) and caffeic acid O-methyltransferase (COMT) catalyze key steps in the pathway of lignin monomer biosynthesis. Brown midrib mutants in Zea mays and Sorghum bicolor with impaired...

  20. A Continuous, Quantitative Fluorescent Assay for Plant Caffeic acid O-Methyltransferases

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Plant caffeic acid O-methyltransferases (COMTs) use s-adenosylmethionine (ado-met), as a methyl donor to transmethylate their preferred (phenolic) substrates in-vivo, and will generally utilize a range of phenolic compounds in-vitro. Collazo et al. (2005; Analytical Biochemistry 342: 86-92) have pu...

  1. Catechol-O-methyltransferase: a method for autoradiographic visualization of isozymes in cellogel

    SciTech Connect

    Brahe, C.; Crosti, N.; Meera Khan, P.; Serra, A.

    1984-02-01

    An electrophoretic procedure for separating the molecular forms of catechol-O-methyltransferase in cellulose acetate gel is described; the zones of enzyme activity were revealed by autoradiography. The electrophoretic patterns of the enzyme in several tissues and cell lines derived from four different species are presented.

  2. Association of Catechol-O-Methyltransferase (COMT) Polymorphism and Academic Achievement in a Chinese Cohort

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Yeh, Ting-Kuang; Chang, Chun-Yen; Hu, Chung-Yi; Yeh, Ting-Chi; Lin, Ming-Yeh

    2009-01-01

    Catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) is a methylation enzyme that catalyzes the degradation pathway and inactivation of dopamine. It is accepted widely as being involved in the modulation of dopaminergic physiology and prefrontal cortex (PFC) function. The COMT Val158Met polymorphism is associated with variation in COMT activity. COMT 158Met allele…

  3. Enzymatic production of oroxylin A and hispidulin using a liverwort flavone 6-O-methyltransferase.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Yu-Ying; Xu, Rui-Xue; Gao, Shuai; Cheng, Ai-Xia

    2016-08-01

    Oroxylin A and hispidulin, compounds which are abundant in both Scutellaria and liverwort species, are important lead compounds for the treatment of ischemic cerebrovascular disease. Their enzymatic synthesis requires an O-methyltransferase able to interact with the related flavonoid's 6-OH group, but such an enzyme has yet to be identified in plants. Here, the gene encoding an O-methyltransferase (designated PaF6OMT) was isolated from the liverwort species Plagiochasma appendiculatum. A test of alternative substrates revealed that its strongest preferences were baicalein and scutellarein, which were converted into, respectively, oroxylin A and hispidulin. Allowed a sufficient reaction time, the conversion rate of these two substrates was, respectively, 90% and 100%. PaF6OMT offers an enzymatic route to the synthesis of oroxylin A and hispidulin. PMID:27432544

  4. Crystallization and preliminary X-ray diffraction studies of a catechol-O-methyltransferase/inhibitor complex

    SciTech Connect

    Rodrigues, M. L.; Bonifácio, M. J.; Soares-da-Silva, P.; Carrondo, M. A.; Archer, M.

    2005-01-01

    Catechol-O-methyltransferase has been co-crystallized with a novel inhibitor, which has potential therapeutic application in the Parkinson’s disease therapy. Inhibitors of the enzyme catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) are used as co-adjuvants in the therapy of Parkinson’s disease. A recombinant form of the soluble cytosolic COMT from rat has been co-crystallized with a new potent inhibitor, BIA 8-176 [(3,4-dihydroxy-2-nitrophenyl)phenylmethanone], by the vapour-diffusion method using PEG 6K as precipitant. Crystals diffract to 1.6 Å resolution on a synchrotron-radiation source and belong to the monoclinic space group P2{sub 1}, with unit-cell parameters a = 52.77, b = 79.63, c = 61.54 Å, β = 91.14°.

  5. Independent Recruitment of an O-Methyltransferase for Syringyl Lignin Biosynthesis in Selaginella moellendorffii[W

    PubMed Central

    Weng, Jing-Ke; Akiyama, Takuya; Ralph, John; Chapple, Clint

    2011-01-01

    Syringyl lignin, an important component of the secondary cell wall, has traditionally been considered to be a hallmark of angiosperms because ferns and gymnosperms in general lack lignin of this type. Interestingly, syringyl lignin was also detected in Selaginella, a genus that represents an extant lineage of the most basal of the vascular plants, the lycophytes. In angiosperms, syringyl lignin biosynthesis requires the activity of ferulate 5-hydroxylase (F5H), a cytochrome P450-dependent monooxygenase, and caffeic acid/5-hydroxyferulic acid O-methyltransferase (COMT). Together, these two enzymes divert metabolic flux from the biosynthesis of guaiacyl lignin, a lignin type common to all vascular plants, toward syringyl lignin. Selaginella has independently evolved an alternative lignin biosynthetic pathway in which syringyl subunits are directly derived from the precursors of p-hydroxyphenyl lignin, through the action of a dual specificity phenylpropanoid meta-hydroxylase, Sm F5H. Here, we report the characterization of an O-methyltransferase from Selaginella moellendorffii, COMT, the coding sequence of which is clustered together with F5H at the adjacent genomic locus. COMT is a bifunctional phenylpropanoid O-methyltransferase that can methylate phenylpropanoid meta-hydroxyls at both the 3- and 5-position and function in concert with F5H in syringyl lignin biosynthesis in S. moellendorffii. Phylogenetic analysis reveals that Sm COMT, like F5H, evolved independently from its angiosperm counterparts. PMID:21742988

  6. A Solanum lycopersicum catechol-O-methyltransferase involved in synthesis of the flavor molecule guaiacol.

    PubMed

    Mageroy, Melissa H; Tieman, Denise M; Floystad, Abbye; Taylor, Mark G; Klee, Harry J

    2012-03-01

    O-methyltransferases (OMT) are important enzymes that are responsible for the synthesis of many small molecules, which include lignin monomers, flavonoids, alkaloids, and aroma compounds. One such compound is guaiacol, a small volatile molecule with a smoky aroma that contributes to tomato flavor. Little information is known about the pathway and regulation of synthesis of guaiacol. One possible route for synthesis is via catechol methylation. We identified a tomato O-methyltransferase (CTOMT1) with homology to a Nicotiana tabacum catechol OMT. CTOMT1 was cloned from Solanum lycopersicum cv. M82 and expressed in Escherichia coli. Recombinant CTOMT1 enzyme preferentially methylated catechol, producing guaiacol. To validate the in vivo function of CTOMT1, gene expression was either decreased or increased in transgenic S. lycopersicum plants. Knockdown of CTOMT1 resulted in significantly reduced fruit guaiacol emissions. CTOMT1 overexpression resulted in slightly increased fruit guaiacol emission, which suggested that catechol availability might limit guaiacol production. To test this hypothesis, wild type (WT) and CTOMT1 that overexpress tomato pericarp discs were supplied with exogenously applied catechol. Guaiacol production increased in both WT and transgenic fruit discs, although to a much greater extent in CTOMT1 overexpressing discs. Finally, we identified S. pennellii introgression lines with increased guaiacol content and higher expression of CTOMT1. These lines also showed a trend toward lower catechol levels. Taken together, we concluded that CTOMT1 is a catechol-O-methyltransferase that produces guaiacol in tomato fruit. PMID:22103597

  7. Molecular Cloning and Functional Characterization of a Novel Isoflavone 3′-O-methyltransferase from Pueraria lobata

    PubMed Central

    Li, Jia; Li, Changfu; Gou, Junbo; Zhang, Yansheng

    2016-01-01

    Pueraria lobata roots accumulate 3′-, 4′- and 7-O-methylated isoflavones and many of these methylated compounds exhibit various pharmacological activities. Either the 4′- or 7-O-methylation activity has been investigated at molecular levels in several legume species. However, the gene encoding the isoflavone 3′-O-methyltransferase (OMT) has not yet been isolated from any plant species. In this study, we reported the first cDNA encoding the isoflavone 3′-OMT from P. lobata (designated PlOMT4). Heterologous expressions in yeast and Escherichia coli cells showed that the gene product exhibits an enzyme activity to methylate the 3′-hydroxy group of the isoflavone substrate. The transcript abundance of PlOMT4 matches well with its enzymatic product in different organs of P. lobata and in the plant roots in response to methyl jasmonate elicitation. Integration of the biochemical with metabolic and transcript data supported the proposed function of PlOMT4. The identification of PlOMT4 would not only help to understand the isoflavonoid metabolism in P. lobata but also potentially provide an enzyme catalyst for methylating existing drug candidates to improve their hydrophobicity. PMID:27458460

  8. Structural Basis for Dual Functionality of Isoflavonoid O-Methyltransferases in the Evolution of Plant Defense Responses

    SciTech Connect

    Liu, C.; Deavours, B; Richard, S; Ferrer, J; Blount, J; Huhman, D; Dixon, R; Noel, J

    2006-01-01

    In leguminous plants such as pea (Pisum sativum), alfalfa (Medicago sativa), barrel medic (Medicago truncatula), and chickpea (Cicer arietinum), 4'-O-methylation of isoflavonoid natural products occurs early in the biosynthesis of defense chemicals known as phytoalexins. However, among these four species, only pea catalyzes 3-O-methylation that converts the pterocarpanoid isoflavonoid 6a-hydroxymaackiain to pisatin. In pea, pisatin is important for chemical resistance to the pathogenic fungus Nectria hematococca. While barrel medic does not biosynthesize 6a-hydroxymaackiain, when cell suspension cultures are fed 6a-hydroxymaackiain, they accumulate pisatin. In vitro, hydroxyisoflavanone 4'-O-methyltransferase (HI4'OMT) from barrel medic exhibits nearly identical steady state kinetic parameters for the 4'-O-methylation of the isoflavonoid intermediate 2,7,4'-trihydroxyisoflavanone and for the 3-O-methylation of the 6a-hydroxymaackiain isoflavonoid-derived pterocarpanoid intermediate found in pea. Protein x-ray crystal structures of HI4'OMT substrate complexes revealed identically bound conformations for the 2S,3R-stereoisomer of 2,7,4'-trihydroxyisoflavanone and the 6aR,11aR-stereoisomer of 6a-hydroxymaackiain. These results suggest how similar conformations intrinsic to seemingly distinct chemical substrates allowed leguminous plants to use homologous enzymes for two different biosynthetic reactions. The three-dimensional similarity of natural small molecules represents one explanation for how plants may rapidly recruit enzymes for new biosynthetic reactions in response to changing physiological and ecological pressures.

  9. Structural Basis for Dual Functionality of Isoflavonoid O-Methyltransferases in the Evolution of Plant Defense Responses

    SciTech Connect

    Liu, C.-J.; Deavours, B.E.; Richard, S.B.; Ferrer, J.-L.; Blount, J.W.; Huhman, D.; Dixon, R.A.; Noel, J.

    2007-07-10

    In leguminous plants such as pea (Pisum sativum), alfalfa (Medicago sativa), barrel medic (Medicago truncatula), and chickpea (Cicer arietinum), 4'-O-methylation of isoflavonoid natural products occurs early in the biosynthesis of defense chemicals known as phytoalexins. However, among these four species, only pea catalyzes 3-O-methylation that converts the pterocarpanoid isoflavonoid 6a-hydroxymaackiain to pisatin. In pea, pisatin is important for chemical resistance to the pathogenic fungus Nectria hematococca. While barrel medic does not biosynthesize 6a-hydroxymaackiain, when cell suspension cultures are fed 6a-hydroxymaackiain, they accumulate pisatin. In vitro, hydroxyisoflavanone 4'-O-methyltransferase (HI4'OMT) from barrel medic exhibits nearly identical steady state kinetic parameters for the 4'-O-methylation of the isoflavonoid intermediate 2,7,4'-trihydroxyisoflavanone and for the 3-O-methylation of the 6a-hydroxymaackiain isoflavonoid-derived pterocarpanoid intermediate found in pea. Protein x-ray crystal structures of HI4'OMT substrate complexes revealed identically bound conformations for the 2S,3R-stereoisomer of 2,7,4'-trihydroxyisoflavanone and the 6aR,11aR-stereoisomer of 6a-hydroxymaackiain. These results suggest how similar conformations intrinsic to seemingly distinct chemical substrates allowed leguminous plants to use homologous enzymes for two different biosynthetic reactions. The three-dimensional similarity of natural small molecules represents one explanation for how plants may rapidly recruit enzymes for new biosynthetic reactions in response to changing physiological and ecological pressures.

  10. In planta production of the highly potent resveratrol analogue pterostilbene via stilbene synthase and O-methyltransferase co-expression

    SciTech Connect

    Rimando A. M.; Liu C.; Pan, Z.; Polashock, J. J.; Dayan, F. E., Mizuno, C. S.; Snook, M. E.; Baerson, S. R.

    2012-04-01

    Resveratrol and related stilbenes are thought to play important roles in defence responses in several plant species and have also generated considerable interest as nutraceuticals owing to their diverse health-promoting properties. Pterostilbene, a 3,5-dimethylether derivative of resveratrol, possesses properties similar to its parent compound and, additionally, exhibits significantly higher fungicidal activity in vitro and superior pharmacokinetic properties in vivo. Recombinant enzyme studies carried out using a previously characterized O-methyltransferase sequence from Sorghum bicolor (SbOMT3) demonstrated its ability to catalyse the A ring-specific 3,5-bis-O-methylation of resveratrol, yielding pterostilbene. A binary vector was constructed for the constitutive co-expression of SbOMT3 with a stilbene synthase sequence from peanut (AhSTS3) and used for the generation of stably transformed tobacco and Arabidopsis plants, resulting in the accumulation of pterostilbene in both species. A reduced floral pigmentation phenotype observed in multiple tobacco transformants was further investigated by reversed-phase HPLC analysis, revealing substantial decreases in both dihydroquercetin-derived flavonoids and phenylpropanoid-conjugated polyamines in pterostilbene-producing SbOMT3/AhSTS3 events. These results demonstrate the potential utility of this strategy for the generation of pterostilbene-producing crops and also underscore the need for the development of additional approaches for minimizing concomitant reductions in key phenylpropanoid-derived metabolites.

  11. A Stress-Inducible Resveratrol O-Methyltransferase Involved in the Biosynthesis of Pterostilbene in Grapevine1

    PubMed Central

    Schmidlin, Laure; Poutaraud, Anne; Claudel, Patricia; Mestre, Pere; Prado, Emilce; Santos-Rosa, Maria; Wiedemann-Merdinoglu, Sabine; Karst, Francis; Merdinoglu, Didier; Hugueney, Philippe

    2008-01-01

    Stilbenes are considered the most important phytoalexin group in grapevine (Vitis vinifera) and they are known to contribute to the protection against various pathogens. The main stilbenes in grapevine are resveratrol and its derivatives and, among these, pterostilbene has recently attracted much attention due both to its antifungal and pharmacological properties. Indeed, pterostilbene is 5 to 10 times more fungitoxic than resveratrol in vitro and recent studies have shown that pterostilbene exhibits anticancer, hypolipidemic, and antidiabetic properties. A candidate gene approach was used to identify a grapevine resveratrol O-methyltransferase (ROMT) cDNA and the activity of the corresponding protein was characterized after expression in Escherichia coli. Transient coexpression of ROMT and grapevine stilbene synthase in tobacco (Nicotiana benthamiana) using the agroinfiltration technique resulted in the accumulation of pterostilbene in tobacco tissues. Taken together, these results showed that ROMT was able to catalyze the biosynthesis of pterostilbene from resveratrol both in vitro and in planta. ROMT gene expression in grapevine leaves was induced by different stresses, including downy mildew (Plasmopara viticola) infection, ultraviolet light, and AlCl3 treatment. PMID:18799660

  12. Fewer fluctuations, higher maximum concentration and better motor response of levodopa with catechol-O-methyltransferase inhibition.

    PubMed

    Muhlack, Siegfried; Herrmann, Lennard; Salmen, Stephan; Müller, Thomas

    2014-11-01

    Catechol-O-methyltransferase inhibitor addition to levodopa/carbidopa formulations improves motor symptoms and reduces levodopa fluctuations in patients with Parkinson's disease. Objectives were to investigate the effects of entacapone and tolcapone on plasma behaviour of levodopa, its metabolite 3-O-methyldopa and on motor impairment. 22 patients orally received levodopa/carbidopa first, then levodopa/carbidopa/entacapone and finally levodopa/carbidopa plus tolcapone within a 4.5 h interval twice. Maximum concentration, time to maximum level and bioavailability of levodopa did not differ between all conditions each with 200 mg levodopa application as a whole. Catechol-O-methyltransferase inhibition caused less fluctuations and higher baseline levels of levodopa after the first intake and less 3-O-methyldopa appearance. The maximum levodopa concentrations were higher after the second levodopa intake, particularly with catechol-O-methyltransferase inhibition. The motor response to levodopa was better with catechol-O-methyltransferase inhibition than without, tolcapone was superior to entacapone. More continuous levodopa brain delivery and lower 3-O-methyldopa bioavailability caused a better motor response during catechol-O-methyltransferase inhibition. PMID:24770794

  13. The Structure and Catalytic Mechanism of Sorghum bicolor Caffeoyl-CoA O-Methyltransferase.

    PubMed

    Walker, Alexander M; Sattler, Steven A; Regner, Matt; Jones, Jeffrey P; Ralph, John; Vermerris, Wilfred; Sattler, Scott E; Kang, ChulHee

    2016-09-01

    Caffeoyl-coenzyme A 3-O-methyltransferase (CCoAOMT) is an S-adenosyl methionine (SAM)-dependent O-methyltransferase responsible for methylation of the meta-hydroxyl group of caffeoyl-coenzyme A (CoA) on the pathway to monolignols, with their ring methoxylation status characteristic of guaiacyl or syringyl units in lignin. In order to better understand the unique class of type 2 O-methyltransferases from monocots, we have characterized CCoAOMT from sorghum (Sorghum bicolor; SbCCoAOMT), including the SAM binary complex crystal structure and steady-state enzyme kinetics. Key amino acid residues were validated with site-directed mutagenesis. Isothermal titration calorimetry data indicated a sequential binding mechanism for SbCCoAOMT, wherein SAM binds prior to caffeoyl-CoA, and the enzyme showed allosteric behavior with respect to it. 5-Hydroxyferuloyl-CoA was not a substrate for SbCCoAOMT. We propose a catalytic mechanism in which lysine-180 acts as a catalytic base and deprotonates the reactive hydroxyl group of caffeoyl-CoA. This deprotonation is facilitated by the coordination of the reactive hydroxyl group by Ca(2+) in the active site, lowering the pKa of the 3'-OH group. Collectively, these data give a new perspective on the catalytic mechanism of CCoAOMTs and provide a basis for the functional diversity exhibited by type 2 plant OMTs that contain a unique insertion loop (residues 208-231) conferring affinity for phenylpropanoid-CoA thioesters. The structural model of SbCCoAOMT can serve as the basis for protein engineering approaches to enhance the nutritional, agronomic, and industrially relevant properties of sorghum. PMID:27457122

  14. Synthesis and optimization of N-heterocyclic pyridinones as catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) inhibitors.

    PubMed

    Zhao, Zhijian; Harrison, Scott T; Schubert, Jeffrey W; Sanders, John M; Polsky-Fisher, Stacey; Zhang, Nanyan Rena; McLoughlin, Debra; Gibson, Christopher R; Robinson, Ronald G; Sachs, Nancy A; Kandebo, Monika; Yao, Lihang; Smith, Sean M; Hutson, Pete H; Wolkenberg, Scott E; Barrow, James C

    2016-06-15

    A series of N-heterocyclic pyridinone catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) inhibitors were synthesized. Physicochemical properties, including ligand lipophilic efficiency (LLE) and clogP, were used to guide compound design and attempt to improve inhibitor pharmacokinetics. Incorporation of heterocyclic central rings provided improvements in physicochemical parameters but did not significantly reduce in vitro or in vivo clearance. Nevertheless, compound 11 was identified as a potent inhibitor with sufficient in vivo exposure to significantly affect the dopamine metabolites homovanillic acid (HVA) and dihydroxyphenylacetic acid (DOPAC), and indicate central COMT inhibition. PMID:27133481

  15. Synthesis and Evaluation of Heterocyclic Catechol Mimics as Inhibitors of Catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT)

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    3-Hydroxy-4-pyridinones and 5-hydroxy-4-pyrimidinones were identified as inhibitors of catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) in a high-throughput screen. These heterocyclic catechol mimics exhibit potent inhibition of the enzyme and an improved toxicity profile versus the marketed nitrocatechol inhibitors tolcapone and entacapone. Optimization of the series was aided by X-ray cocrystal structures of the novel inhibitors in complex with COMT and cofactors SAM and Mg2+. The crystal structures suggest a mechanism of inhibition for these heterocyclic inhibitors distinct from previously disclosed COMT inhibitors. PMID:25815153

  16. The role of catechol-O-methyltransferase in catechol-enhanced erythroid differentiation of K562 cells

    SciTech Connect

    Suriguga,; Li, Xiao-Fei; Li, Yang; Yu, Chun-Hong; Li, Yi-Ran; Yi, Zong-Chun

    2013-12-15

    Catechol is widely used in pharmaceutical and chemical industries. Catechol is also one of phenolic metabolites of benzene in vivo. Our previous study showed that catechol improved erythroid differentiation potency of K562 cells, which was associated with decreased DNA methylation in erythroid specific genes. Catechol is a substrate for the catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT)-mediated methylation. In the present study, the role of COMT in catechol-enhanced erythroid differentiation of K562 cells was investigated. Benzidine staining showed that exposure to catechol enhanced hemin-induced hemoglobin accumulation and induced mRNA expression of erythroid specific genes in K562 cells. Treatment with catechol caused a time- and concentration-dependent increase in guaiacol concentration in the medium of cultured K562 cells. When COMT expression was knocked down by COMT shRNA expression in K562 cells, the production of guaiacol significantly reduced, and the sensitivity of K562 cells to cytotoxicity of catechol significantly increased. Knockdown of COMT expression by COMT shRNA expression also eliminated catechol-enhanced erythroid differentiation of K562 cells. In addition, the pre-treatment with methyl donor S-adenosyl-L-methionine or its demethylated product S-adenosyl-L-homocysteine induced a significant increase in hemin-induced Hb synthesis in K562 cells and the mRNA expression of erythroid specific genes. These findings indicated that O-methylation catalyzed by COMT acted as detoxication of catechol and involved in catechol-enhanced erythroid differentiation of K562 cells, and the production of S-adenosyl-L-homocysteine partly explained catechol-enhanced erythroid differentiation. - Highlights: • Catechol enhanced hemin-induced hemoglobin accumulation. • COMT-catalyzed methylation acted as detoxication of catechol. • COMT involved in catechol-enhanced erythroid differentiation.

  17. Melatonin biosynthesis requires N-acetylserotonin methyltransferase activity of caffeic acid O-methyltransferase in rice

    PubMed Central

    Byeon, Yeong; Choi, Geun-Hee; Lee, Hyoung Yool; Back, Kyoungwhan

    2015-01-01

    Caffeic acid O-methyltransferase (COMT) methylates N-acetylserotonin into melatonin; that is, it has N-acetylserotonin O-methyltransferase (ASMT) activity. The ASMT activity of COMT was first detected in Arabidopsis thaliana COMT (AtCOMT). To confirm the involvement of COMT on melatonin synthesis in other plant species, the ASMT activity of a COMT from rice (Oryza sativa) (OsCOMT) was evaluated. Purified recombinant OsCOMT protein from Escherichia coli was used to validate the high ASMT activity of OsCOMT, similar to that of AtCOMT. The K m and V max values for the ASMT activity of OsCOMT were 243 µM and 2400 pmol min−1 mg protein−1, which were similar to those of AtCOMT. Similar to AtCOMT, OsCOMT was localized in the cytoplasm. In vitro ASMT activity was significantly inhibited by either caffeic acid or quercetin in a dose-dependent manner. Analogously, in vivo production of melatonin was significantly inhibited by quercetin in 4-week-old detached rice leaves. Lastly, the transgenic rice plants overexpressing rice COMT showed an increase in melatonin levels whereas transgenic rice plants suppressing the rice COMT had a significant decrease on melatonin levels, suggestive of the direct role of COMT in melatonin biosynthesis in plants. PMID:26276868

  18. Human catechol-O-methyltransferase: Cloning and expression of the membrane-associated form

    SciTech Connect

    Bertocci, B.; Miggiano, V.; Da Prada, M.; Dembic, Z.; Lahm, H.W.; Malherbe, P. )

    1991-02-15

    A cDNA clone for human catechol-O-methyltransferase was isolated from a human hepatoma cell line (Hep G2) cDNA library by hybridization screening with a porcine cDNA probe. The cDNA clone was sequenced and found to have an insert of 1226 nucleotides. The deduced primary structure of hCOMT is composed of 271 amino acid residues with the predicted molecular mass of 30 kDa. At its N terminus it has a hydrophobic segment of 21 amino acid residues that may be responsible for insertion of hCOMT into the endoplasmic reticulum membrane. The primary structure of hCOMT exhibits high homology to the porcine partial cDNA sequence (93%). The deduced amino acid sequence contains two tryptic peptide sequences (T-22, T-33) found in porcine liver catechol-O-methyltransferase (CEMT). The coding region of hCOMT cDNA was placed under the control of the cytomegalovirus promoter to transfect human kidney 293 cells. The recombinant hCOMT was shown by immunoblot analysis to be mainly associated with the membrane fraction. RNA blot analysis revealed one COMT mRNA transcript of 1.4 kilobases in Hep G2 poly(A){sup +} RNA.

  19. Structural characterization of CalO1: a putative orsellinic acid methyltransferase in the calicheamicin-biosynthetic pathway

    SciTech Connect

    Chang, Aram; Singh, Shanteri; Bingman, Craig A.; Thorson, Jon S.; Phillips, Jr, George N.

    2011-11-07

    The X-ray structure determination at 2.4 {angstrom} resolution of the putative orsellinic acid C3 O-methyltransferase (CalO1) involved in calicheamicin biosynthesis is reported. Comparison of CalO1 with a homology model of the functionally related calicheamicin orsellinic acid C2 O-methyltransferase (CalO6) implicates several residues that are likely to contribute to the regiospecificity of alkylation. Consistent with the proposed requirement of an acyl-carrier-protein-bound substrate, this structural study also reveals structural determinants within CalO1 that are anticipated to accommodate an association with an acyl carrier protein.

  20. Convergent Mechanistic Features between the Structurally Diverse N- and O-Methyltransferases: Glycine N-Methyltransferase and Catechol O-Methyltransferase.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Jianyu; Klinman, Judith P

    2016-07-27

    Although an enormous and still growing number of biologically diverse methyltransferases have been reported and identified, a comprehensive understanding of the enzymatic methyl transfer mechanism is still lacking. Glycine N-methyltransferase (GNMT), a member of the family that acts on small metabolites as the substrate, catalyzes methyl transfer from S-adenosyl-l-methionine (AdoMet) to glycine to form S-adenosyl-l-homocysteine and sarcosine. We report primary carbon ((12)C/(14)C) and secondary ((1)H3/(3)H3) kinetic isotope effects at the transferred methyl group, together with (1)H3/(3)H3 binding isotope effects for wild-type GNMT and a series of Tyr21 mutants. The data implicate a compaction effect in the methyl transfer step that is conferred by the protein structure. Furthermore, a remarkable similarity of properties is observed between GNMT and catechol O-methyltransferase, despite significant differences between these enzymes with regard to their active site structures and catalyzed reactions. We attribute these results to a catalytically relevant reduction in the methyl donor-acceptor distance that is dependent on a tyrosine side chain positioned behind the methyl-bearing sulfur of AdoMet. PMID:27355841

  1. Phylogenetic, molecular, and biochemical characterization of caffeic aicd O-methyltransferase (COMT) gene family in Brachypodium distachyon

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Caffeic acid O-methyltransferase (COMT) is one of the important enzymes controlling lignin monomer production in plant cell wall synthesis. Analysis of the genome sequence of new grass model Brachypodium distachyon identified four COMT gene homologues, designated as BdCOMT1, BdCOMT2, BdCOMT3, and ...

  2. Sugar accumulation in grape berries. Cloning of two putative vacuolar invertase cDNAs and their expression in grapevine tissues.

    PubMed Central

    Davies, C; Robinson, S P

    1996-01-01

    During grape berry (Vitis vinifera L.) ripening, sucrose transported from the leaves is accumulated in the berry vacuoles as glucose and fructose. To study the involvement of invertase in grape berry ripening, we have cloned two cDNAs (GIN1 and GIN2) from berries. The cDNAs encode translation products that are 62% identical to each other and both appear to be vacuolar forms of invertase. Both genes are expressed in a variety of tissues, including berries, leaves, roots, seeds, and flowers, but the two genes have distinct patterns of expression. In grape berries, hexose accumulation began 8 weeks postflowering and continued until the fruit was ripe at 16 weeks. Invertase activity increased from flowering, was maximal 8 weeks postflowering, and remained constant on a per berry basis throughout ripening. Expression of GIN1 and GIN2 in berries, which was high early in berry development, declined greatly at the commencement of hexose accumulation. The results suggest that although vacuolar invertases are involved in hexose accumulation in grape berries, the expression of the genes and the synthesis of the enzymes precedes the onset of hexose accumulation by some weeks, so other mechanisms must be involved in regulating this process. PMID:8685267

  3. Functional characterization of a plastidal cation-dependent O-methyltransferase from the liverwort Plagiochasma appendiculatum.

    PubMed

    Xu, Rui-Xue; Zhao, Yu; Gao, Shuai; Zhang, Yu-Ying; Li, Dan-Dan; Lou, Hong-Xiang; Cheng, Ai-Xia

    2015-10-01

    Caffeoyl CoA O-methyltransferases (CCoAOMTs), known to be involved in phenylpropanoid metabolism and lignin synthesis, have been characterized from several higher plant species, which also harbor CCoAOMT-like enzymes responsible for methylation of a variety of flavonoids, anthocyanins, coumarins and phenylpropanoids. Here, a gene encoding a CCoAOMT (PaOMT1) was isolated from a sequenced cDNA library of the liverwort species Plagiochasma appendiculatum, a species belonging to the Family Aytoniaceae. The full-length cDNA sequence of PaOMT1 contains 909 bp, and is predicted to encode a protein with 302 amino acids. The gene products were 40-50% identical to CCoAOMT sequences of other plants. Experiments based on recombinant PaOMT1 showed that the enzyme was able to methylate phenylpropanoids, flavonoids and coumarins, with a preference for the flavonoid quercetin (19). Although the substrate selectivity and biochemical feature of PaOMT1 is similar to CCoAOMT-like enzymes, the sequence alignment results indicated PaOMT1 is closer to true CCoAOMT enzymes. A phylogenetic analysis indicated that PaOMT1 is intermediate between true CCoAOMTs and CCoAOMT-like enzymes. The transient expression of a PaOMT1-GFP fusion in tobacco demonstrated that PaOMT1 is directed to the plastids. PaOMT1 may represent an ancestral form of higher plant true CCoAOMT and CCoAOMT-like enzymes. This is the first time an O-methyltransferase was characterized in liverworts. PMID:26277769

  4. Down-regulation of the caffeic acid O-methyltransferase gene in switchgrass reveals a novel monolignol analog

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Down-regulation of the caffeic acid 3-O-methyltransferase EC 2.1.1.68 (COMT) gene in the lignin biosynthetic pathway of switchgrass (Panicum virgatum) resulted in cell walls of transgenic plants releasing more constituent sugars after pretreatment by dilute acid and treatment with glycosyl hydrolases from an added enzyme preparation and from Clostridium thermocellum. Fermentation of both wild-type and transgenic switchgrass after milder hot water pretreatment with no water washing showed that only the transgenic switchgrass inhibited C. thermocellum. Gas chromatography–mass spectrometry (GCMS)-based metabolomics were undertaken on cell wall aqueous extracts to determine the nature of the microbial inhibitors. Results GCMS confirmed the increased concentration of a number of phenolic acids and aldehydes that are known inhibitors of microbial fermentation. Metabolomic analyses of the transgenic biomass additionally revealed the presence of a novel monolignol-like metabolite, identified as trans-3, 4-dimethoxy-5-hydroxycinnamyl alcohol (iso-sinapyl alcohol) in both non-pretreated, as well as hot water pretreated samples. iso-Sinapyl alcohol and its glucoside were subsequently generated by organic synthesis and the identity of natural and synthetic materials were confirmed by mass spectrometric and NMR analyses. The additional novel presence of iso-sinapic acid, iso-sinapyl aldehyde, and iso-syringin suggest the increased activity of a para-methyltransferase, concomitant with the reduced COMT activity, a strict meta-methyltransferase. Quantum chemical calculations were used to predict the most likely homodimeric lignans generated from dehydration reactions, but these products were not evident in plant samples. Conclusions Down-regulation of COMT activity in switchgrass resulted in the accumulation of previously undetected metabolites resembling sinapyl alcohol and its related metabolites, but that are derived from para-methylation of 5-hydroxyconiferyl

  5. Opicapone: a short lived and very long acting novel catechol-O-methyltransferase inhibitor following multiple dose administration in healthy subjects

    PubMed Central

    Rocha, José Francisco; Almeida, Luis; Falcão, Amílcar; Palma, P Nuno; Loureiro, Ana I; Pinto, Roberto; Bonifácio, Maria João; Wright, Lyndon C; Nunes, Teresa; Soares-da-Silva, Patrício

    2013-01-01

    Aims The aim of this study was to assess the tolerability, pharmacokinetics and inhibitory effect on erythrocyte soluble catechol-O-methyltransferase (S-COMT) activity following repeated doses of opicapone. Methods This randomized, placebo-controlled, double-blind study enrolled healthy male subjects who received either once daily placebo or opicapone 5, 10, 20 or 30 mg for 8 days. Results Opicapone was well tolerated. Its systemic exposure increased in an approximately dose-proportional manner with an apparent terminal half-life of 1.0 to 1.4 h. Sulphation was the main metabolic pathway. Opicapone metabolites recovered in urine accounted for less than 3% of the amount of opicapone administered suggesting that bile is likely the main route of excretion. Maximum S-COMT inhibition (Emax) ranged from 69.9% to 98.0% following the last dose of opicapone. The opicapone-induced S-COMT inhibition showed a half-life in excess of 100 h, which was dose-independent and much longer than plasma drug exposure. Such a half-life translates into a putative underlying rate constant that is comparable with the estimated dissociation rate constant of the COMT–opicapone complex. Conclusion Despite its short elimination half-life, opicapone markedly and sustainably inhibited erythrocyte S-COMT activity making it suitable for a once daily regimen. PMID:23336248

  6. In silico and in vivo studies of an Arabidopsis thaliana gene, ACR2, putatively involved in arsenic accumulation in plants.

    PubMed

    Nahar, Noor; Rahman, Aminur; Moś, Maria; Warzecha, Tomasz; Algerin, Maria; Ghosh, Sibdas; Johnson-Brousseau, Sheila; Mandal, Abul

    2012-09-01

    Previously, our in silico analyses identified four candidate genes that might be involved in uptake and/or accumulation of arsenics in plants: arsenate reductase 2 (ACR2), phytochelatin synthase 1 (PCS1) and two multi-drug resistant proteins (MRP1 and MRP2) [Lund et al. (2010) J Biol Syst 18:223-224]. We also postulated that one of these four genes, ACR2, seems to play a central role in this process. To investigate further, we have constructed a 3D structure of the Arabidopsis thaliana ACR2 protein using the iterative implementation of the threading assembly refinement (I-TASSER) server. These analyses revealed that, for catalytic metabolism of arsenate, the arsenate binding-loop (AB-loop) and residues Phe-53, Phe-54, Cys-134, Cys-136, Cys-141, Cys-145, and Lys-135 are essential for reducing arsenate to arsenic intermediates (arsenylated enzyme-substrate intermediates) and arsenite in plants. Thus, functional predictions suggest that the ACR2 protein is involved in the conversion of arsenate to arsenite in plant cells. To validate the in silico results, we exposed a transfer-DNA (T-DNA)-tagged mutant of A. thaliana (mutation in the ACR2 gene) to various amounts of arsenic. Reverse transcriptase PCR revealed that the mutant exhibits significantly reduced expression of the ACR2 gene. Spectrophotometric analyses revealed that the amount of accumulated arsenic compounds in this mutant was approximately six times higher than that observed in control plants. The results obtained from in silico analyses are in complete agreement with those obtained in laboratory experiments. PMID:22562211

  7. Both caffeoyl Coenzyme A 3-O-methyltransferase 1 and caffeic acid O-methyltransferase 1 are involved in redundant functions for lignin, flavonoids and sinapoyl malate biosynthesis in Arabidopsis.

    PubMed

    Do, Cao-Trung; Pollet, Brigitte; Thévenin, Johanne; Sibout, Richard; Denoue, Dominique; Barrière, Yves; Lapierre, Catherine; Jouanin, Lise

    2007-10-01

    Two methylation steps are necessary for the biosynthesis of monolignols, the lignin precursors. Caffeic acid O-methyltransferase (COMT) O-methylates at the C5 position of the phenolic ring. COMT is responsible for the biosynthesis of sinapyl alcohol, the precursor of syringyl lignin units. The O-methylation at the C3 position of the phenolic ring involves the Caffeoyl CoA 3-O-methyltransferase (CCoAOMT). The CCoAOMT 1 gene (At4g34050) is believed to encode the enzyme responsible for the first O-methylation in Arabidopsis thaliana. A CCoAOMT1 promoter-GUS fusion and immunolocalization experiments revealed that this gene is strongly and exclusively expressed in the vascular tissues of stems and roots. An Arabidopsis T-DNA null mutant named ccomt 1 was identified and characterised. The mutant stems are slightly smaller than wild-type stems in short-day growth conditions and has collapsed xylem elements. The lignin content of the stem is low and the S/G ratio is high mainly due to fewer G units. These results suggest that this O-methyltransferase is involved in G-unit biosynthesis but does not act alone to perform this step in monolignol biosynthesis. To determine which O-methyltransferase assists CCoAOMT 1, a comt 1 ccomt1 double mutant was generated and studied. The development of comt 1 ccomt1 is arrested at the plantlet stage in our growth conditions. Lignins of these plantlets are mainly composed of p-hydroxyphenyl units. Moreover, the double mutant does not synthesize sinapoyl malate, a soluble phenolic. These results suggest that CCoAOMT 1 and COMT 1 act together to methylate the C3 position of the phenolic ring of monolignols in Arabidopsis. In addition, they are both involved in the formation of sinapoyl malate and isorhamnetin. PMID:17594112

  8. Studies on the function and catalytic mechanism of O-methyltransferases SviOMT02, SviOMT03 and SviOMT06 from Streptomyces virginiae IBL14.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Yan; Han, Mao-Zhen; Zhu, Shu-Liang; Li, Man; Dong, Xiang; Luo, Xue-Cai; Kong, Zhe; Lu, Yun-Xia; Wang, Shu-Yan; Tong, Wang-Yu

    2015-06-01

    To identify the fuctions of the nine putative O-methyltransferase genes in Streptomyces virginiae IBL14, the evolutionary and functional relationship of these genes in its 8.0 Mb linear chromosome was set up via sequence comparison with those of other Streptomyces species. Further, the functions and catalytic mechanism of the three genes sviOMT02, sviOMT03 and sviOMT06 from this strain were studied through experimental and computational approaches. As a result, the nine putative O-methyltransferases belong to methyltransf_2 superfamily, amdomet-MTases superfamily, and leucine carboxyl methyltransferase superfamily, and are phylogenetically close to those of Streptomyces sp. C. The products of genes sviOMT03 and sviOMT06 could catalyze O-methylation of caffeic acid to form ferulic acid. Computational analysis indicated that the O-methylation mechanism of SviOMT03 and SviOMT06 proceeds from a direct transfer of the SAM-methyl group to caffeic acid with inversion of symmetry aided by a divalent metal ion in a SN2-like mechanism. Particularly, the conservative polar amino acid residues in SviOMT03 and SviOMT06, including Lys143 that reacts with caffeic acid, Ser74, Asp140 and Tyr149 that react with S-adenosyl methionine, and His142 (SviOMT03) or His171 (SviOMT06) that transfers the 3-hydroxyl proton of substrate caffeic acid, probably be essential in their O-methylation. PMID:26002507

  9. Loop dynamics of thymidine diphosphate-rhamnose 3'-O-methyltransferase (CalS11), an enzyme in calicheamicin biosynthesis.

    PubMed

    Han, Lu; Singh, Shanteri; Thorson, Jon S; Phillips, George N

    2016-01-01

    Structure analysis and ensemble refinement of the apo-structure of thymidine diphosphate (TDP)-rhamnose 3'-O-methyltransferase reveal a gate for substrate entry and product release. TDP-rhamnose 3'-O-methyltransferase (CalS11) catalyses a 3'-O-methylation of TDP-rhamnose, an intermediate in the biosynthesis of enediyne antitumor antibiotic calicheamicin. CalS11 operates at the sugar nucleotide stage prior to glycosylation step. Here, we present the crystal structure of the apo form of CalS11 at 1.89 Å resolution. We propose that the L2 loop functions as a gate facilitating and/or providing specificity for substrate entry or promoting product release. Ensemble refinement analysis slightly improves the crystallographic refinement statistics and furthermore provides a compelling way to visualize the dynamic model of loop L2, supporting the understanding of its proposed role in catalysis. PMID:26958582

  10. Influence of catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) genotypes on the prognosis of canine mammary tumors.

    PubMed

    Dias Pereira, P; Lopes, C C; Matos, A J F; Pinto, D; Gärtner, F; Lopes, C; Medeiros, R

    2009-11-01

    Catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) is an important enzyme involved in inactivation of catechol estrogens, which are metabolites with carcinogenic properties. Some investigations in human breast cancer associate a genetic polymorphism in the COMT gene (COMT val158met) with an increased risk and poor clinical progression of the disease. In dogs, there are 2 recognized single nucleotide polymorphisms in the COMT gene (COMTG216A and COMTG482A); however, their influence on the outcome of mammary neoplasms has never been investigated. The purpose of this study is to investigate the influence of COMT in the clinical progression of canine mammary tumors, namely in recurrence, metastasis and survival by testing 2 SNPs (G216A and G482A), and 2 genotypes of the COMT gene. A case series was conducted analyzing genomic DNA samples by polymerase chain reaction-restriction fragment length polymorphism from 80 bitches with mammary tumors. Animals were submitted to an active follow-up study for a period of 24 months after surgery. We observed that bitches carrying both genetic variations simultaneously are more likely to develop recurrence of mammary lesions. Our results demonstrate a possible role for COMT genotypes in the outcome of mammary neoplasms in the dog. Identifying a genetic factor predictive of recurrence may be useful in selecting the most effective surgical approach for canine mammary neoplasms. PMID:19605895

  11. Catechol-O-methyltransferase val158met polymorphism predicts placebo effect in irritable bowel syndrome.

    PubMed

    Hall, Kathryn T; Lembo, Anthony J; Kirsch, Irving; Ziogas, Dimitrios C; Douaiher, Jeffrey; Jensen, Karin B; Conboy, Lisa A; Kelley, John M; Kokkotou, Efi; Kaptchuk, Ted J

    2012-01-01

    Identifying patients who are potential placebo responders has major implications for clinical practice and trial design. Catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT), an important enzyme in dopamine catabolism plays a key role in processes associated with the placebo effect such as reward, pain, memory and learning. We hypothesized that the COMT functional val158met polymorphism, was a predictor of placebo effects and tested our hypothesis in a subset of 104 patients from a previously reported randomized controlled trial in irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). The three treatment arms from this study were: no-treatment ("waitlist"), placebo treatment alone ("limited") and, placebo treatment "augmented" with a supportive patient-health care provider interaction. The primary outcome measure was change from baseline in IBS-Symptom Severity Scale (IBS-SSS) after three weeks of treatment. In a regression model, the number of methionine alleles in COMT val158met was linearly related to placebo response as measured by changes in IBS-SSS (p = .035). The strongest placebo response occurred in met/met homozygotes treated in the augmented placebo arm. A smaller met/met associated effect was observed with limited placebo treatment and there was no effect in the waitlist control. These data support our hypothesis that the COMT val158met polymorphism is a potential biomarker of placebo response. PMID:23110189

  12. Inhibitors of catechol-O-methyltransferase in the treatment of neurological disorders.

    PubMed

    Jatana, Nidhi; Apoorva, N; Malik, Sonika; Sharma, Aditya; Latha, Narayanan

    2013-01-01

    Catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) is the enzyme which catalyzes the transfer of a methyl group from S-adenosylmethionine to catechols and catecholamines, like the neurotransmitters dopamine, epinephrine and norepinephrine. COMT has implications in many neurological and psychiatric disorders like schizophrenia, Parkinson's disease (PD), bipolar disorders, etc. and therefore, it serves as an important drug target. Since its characterization in 1957, many inhibitors were designed where the first generation inhibitors were found to be highly toxic, short acting and had poor bioavailability. Currently, two of the second generation inhibitors, tolcapone and entacapone have been used for treatment of PD but are associated with various dopaminergic and gastro-intestinal side-effects. There have been several approaches for the design of novel COMT inhibitors with a good and safe therapeutic profile. The focus of this article is to review the current knowledge on COMT and the role of COMT inhibitors in the treatment of neurological disorders. The inhibitors have been classified into six different classes based on the structural framework. A historical overview of the discovery and development of COMT inhibitors is presented with a special emphasis on new generation of inhibitors till date. PMID:24450388

  13. Salvianolic acid B as a substrate and weak catechol-O-methyltransferase inhibitor in rats.

    PubMed

    Qi, Qu; Cao, Lijuan; Li, Feiyan; Wang, Hong; Liu, Huiying; Hao, Haiping; Hao, Kun

    2015-01-01

    1. The aim of this study was to investigate the biotransformation of salvianolic acid B (SAB) by catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) and its interaction with levodopa (l-DOPA) methylation in rats. 2. The enzyme kinetics of SAB were studied after incubation with rat COMT. The in vivo SAB and 3-monomethyl-SAB (3-MMS) levels were determined after a single dose of tolcapone with or without SAB administration. For l-DOPA, the effect of SAB inhibition on l-DOPA methylation was studied in vitro. The l-DOPA and 3-O-methyldopa (3-OMD) levels were determined after single and multiple doses of SAB with or without l-DOPA administration. 3. After incubation, we found that SAB was methylated mainly by rat liver and kidney COMT. Tolcapone strongly inhibited the formation of 3-MMS in vitro and in vivo, without any change in the plasma concentration of SAB. Moreover, tolcapone significantly increased the cumulative bile excretion of SAB from 3% to 40% in the rat. SAB inhibited the methylation of l-DOPA with an IC50 value of 2.08 μM in vitro. In vivo, a single intravenous dose of SAB decreased the plasma concentration of 3-OMD, with no obvious effect on the pharmacokinetics of l-DOPA. Multiple doses of SAB given to rats also decreased the plasma concentration of 3-OMD, while SAB increased the plasma concentration of l-DOPA. PMID:25869243

  14. Molecular orbital studies on the structure-activity relationships of catechol O-methyltransferase inhibitors.

    PubMed

    Shinagawa, Y

    1992-02-01

    Quantum chemical studies were applied to analyze the activities of catechol O-methyltransferase (COMT) inhibitors. Molecular orbital calculations of inhibitor molecules were made by semi-empirical molecular orbital calculations, CNDO/2 (complete neglect of differential overlap) methods. Regression analysis among theoretical reaction indices based on the frontier electron theory and COMT inhibitory activities were carried out. The COMT inhibitory actions of two series of inhibitors, a series of 1,5-substituted 3,4-dihydroxy benzenes and a series of substituted 3-hydroxy-4-methoxy benzenes, were investigated. The resulting regression equations contain two common reaction indices as regression variables: the electron density on the oxygen atom of the hydroxyl group and the super-delocalizability on the 5th carbon atom of the benzene ring. These two atomic positions are considered to play an important role in the interaction of these inhibitors with COMT. The hydroxyl of atomic position 3 is probably indispensable to the COMT inhibitory action by these inhibitors. PMID:1507526

  15. Role of O-methyltransferase in the lignification of Douglas-fir cultured tissue

    SciTech Connect

    Monroe, S.H.

    1983-01-01

    O-methyltransferase (OMT) is a key enzyme in the biosynthesis of lignin. This enzyme was isolated and characterized in an effort to understand why Douglas-fir (Pseudotsuga menziesii (Mirb.) Franco) callus tissue does not form appreciable amounts of lignin yet does form large amounts of the related flavonoids and tannins. It was shown that the OMT in the callus tissue is a cell wall associated, membrane-bound enzyme, in contrast to that of all reported plant species and to Douglas-fir seedlings, which have either a microsomal or soluble OMT. The effect this had on the OMT kinetic constants was studied. It was found that the callus OMT had much higher K/sub m/ constants for caffeic acid in both the membrane-bound and free forms compared with seedlings. The callus membrane-bound K/sub m/ for caffeic acid is 333 ..mu..M. The callus membrane-free K/sub m/ for caffeic acid is 250 ..mu..M. The seedling K/sub m/ for caffeic acid is 90 ..mu..M.

  16. Gender effect of catechol-O-methyltransferase Val158Met polymorphism on suicidal behavior.

    PubMed

    Lee, Hwa-Young; Kim, Yong-Ku

    2011-01-01

    Genetic factors and catecholaminergic dysfunction have been suggested as the etiology of suicide. The catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) 158Val/Met polymorphism affects COMT activity; that is, the alleles encoding Val and Met are associated with relatively high and relatively low COMT activity, respectively. We aimed to identify the role of the COMT Val158Met polymorphism in suicidal attempt behavior. The COMT 158Val/Met polymorphisms were analyzed in 197 suicide attempters (male/female: 70/127), 170 control subjects (male/female: 85/85). All subjects were ethnic Korean. The Lethality Suicide Attempt Rating Scale (LSARS) and risk-rescue rating (RRR) system were explored. For the male subjects, there was a significant difference in genotype distributions and allele frequencies between control subjects and suicide attempters. That is, Val/Val genotype and Val carriers were more frequent in suicide attempters than in control subjects. For the female subjects, however, no significant difference was shown in genotype distributions and allele frequencies between control subjects and suicide attempters. There were no significant differences in LSARS and RRR according to the genotypes. The distribution of the COMT 158Val/Met polymorphism showed a biologically meaningful difference between control subjects and suicide attempters among the male subjects although selection bias should be considered. PMID:21304229

  17. Catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) gene modulates private self-consciousness and self-flexibility.

    PubMed

    Wang, Bei; Ru, Wenzhao; Yang, Xing; Yang, Lu; Fang, Pengpeng; Zhu, Xu; Shen, Guomin; Gao, Xiaocai; Gong, Pingyuan

    2016-08-01

    Dopamine levels in the brain influence human consciousness. Inspired by the role of Catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) in inactivating dopamine in the brain, we investigated to what extent COMT could modulate individual's self-consciousness dispositions and self-consistency by genotyping the COMT Val158Met (rs4680) polymorphism and measuring self-consciousness and self-consistency and congruence in a college student population. The results indicated that COMT Val158Met polymorphism significantly modulated the private self-consciousness. The individuals with Val/Val genotype, corresponding to lower dopamine levels in the brain, were more likely to be aware of their feelings and beliefs. The results also indicated that this polymorphism modulated one's self-flexibility. The individuals with Val/Val genotype showed higher levels of stereotype in self-concept compared with those with Met/Met genotype. These findings suggest that COMT is a predictor of the individual differences in self-consciousness and self-flexibility. PMID:27522491

  18. Catechol-O-Methyltransferase val158met Polymorphism Predicts Placebo Effect in Irritable Bowel Syndrome

    PubMed Central

    Hall, Kathryn T.; Lembo, Anthony J.; Kirsch, Irving; Ziogas, Dimitrios C.; Douaiher, Jeffrey; Jensen, Karin B.; Conboy, Lisa A.; Kelley, John M.; Kokkotou, Efi; Kaptchuk, Ted J.

    2012-01-01

    Identifying patients who are potential placebo responders has major implications for clinical practice and trial design. Catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT), an important enzyme in dopamine catabolism plays a key role in processes associated with the placebo effect such as reward, pain, memory and learning. We hypothesized that the COMT functional val158met polymorphism, was a predictor of placebo effects and tested our hypothesis in a subset of 104 patients from a previously reported randomized controlled trial in irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). The three treatment arms from this study were: no-treatment (“waitlist”), placebo treatment alone (“limited”) and, placebo treatment “augmented” with a supportive patient-health care provider interaction. The primary outcome measure was change from baseline in IBS-Symptom Severity Scale (IBS-SSS) after three weeks of treatment. In a regression model, the number of methionine alleles in COMT val158met was linearly related to placebo response as measured by changes in IBS-SSS (p = .035). The strongest placebo response occurred in met/met homozygotes treated in the augmented placebo arm. A smaller met/met associated effect was observed with limited placebo treatment and there was no effect in the waitlist control. These data support our hypothesis that the COMT val158met polymorphism is a potential biomarker of placebo response. PMID:23110189

  19. Catechol-O-methyltransferase-deficient mice exhibit sexually dimorphic changes in catecholamine levels and behavior.

    PubMed

    Gogos, J A; Morgan, M; Luine, V; Santha, M; Ogawa, S; Pfaff, D; Karayiorgou, M

    1998-08-18

    Catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) is one of the major mammalian enzymes involved in the metabolic degradation of catecholamines and is considered a candidate for several psychiatric disorders and symptoms, including the psychopathology associated with the 22q11 microdeletion syndrome. By means of homologous recombination in embryonic stem cells, a strain of mice in which the gene encoding the COMT enzyme has been disrupted was produced. The basal concentrations of brain catecholamines were measured in the striatum, frontal cortex, and hypothalamus of adult male and female mutants. Locomotor activity, anxiety-like behaviors, sensorimotor gating, and aggressive behavior also were analyzed. Mutant mice demonstrated sexually dimorphic and region-specific changes of dopamine levels, notably in the frontal cortex. In addition, homozygous COMT-deficient female (but not male) mice displayed impairment in emotional reactivity in the dark/light exploratory model of anxiety. Furthermore, heterozygous COMT-deficient male mice exhibited increased aggressive behavior. Our results provide conclusive evidence for an important sex- and region-specific contribution of COMT in the maintenance of steady-state levels of catecholamines in the brain and suggest a role for COMT in some aspects of emotional and social behavior in mice. PMID:9707588

  20. Genetic influences on insight problem solving: the role of catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) gene polymorphisms

    PubMed Central

    Jiang, Weili; Shang, Siyuan; Su, Yanjie

    2015-01-01

    People may experience an “aha” moment, when suddenly realizing a solution of a puzzling problem. This experience is called insight problem solving. Several findings suggest that catecholamine-related genes may contribute to insight problem solving, among which the catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) gene is the most promising candidate. The current study examined 753 healthy individuals to determine the associations between 7 candidate single nucleotide polymorphisms on the COMT gene and insight problem-solving performance, while considering gender differences. The results showed that individuals carrying A allele of rs4680 or T allele of rs4633 scored significantly higher on insight problem-solving tasks, and the COMT gene rs5993883 combined with gender interacted with correct solutions of insight problems, specifically showing that this gene only influenced insight problem-solving performance in males. This study presents the first investigation of the genetic impact on insight problem solving and provides evidence that highlights the role that the COMT gene plays in insight problem solving. PMID:26528222

  1. Catechol-O-Methyltransferase Gene Polymorphisms in Specific Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder Patients' Subgroups.

    PubMed

    Melo-Felippe, Fernanda Brito; de Salles Andrade, Juliana Braga; Giori, Isabele Gomes; Vieira-Fonseca, Tamiris; Fontenelle, Leonardo Franklin; Kohlrausch, Fabiana Barzotti

    2016-01-01

    Pharmacological data and animal models support the hypothesis that the dopaminergic (DA) system is implicated in obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). Therefore, this case-control study assessed whether genetics variations in catechol-O-methyltransferase gene (COMT) could influence susceptibility to OCD and OCD features in a Brazilian sample. A sample of 199 patients with OCD and 200 healthy individuals was genotyped for -287A > G (rs2075507) and Val158Met (rs4680) single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) by TaqMan(®) or restriction mapping. We observed a statistically significant predominance of the Met low-activity allele in the male patient group as compared to the male healthy control group. The -287A > G polymorphism's genotypes and alleles were significantly overrepresented among male individuals with ordering and female subjects with washing symptoms. We also found female hoarders to exhibit a significant higher frequency of the low activity Met/Met genotype of Val158Met polymorphism compared to female patients who did not express this dimension. Our data suggest an influence of COMT polymorphisms on OCD and OCD patients' features, such as gender, and ordering, washing, and hoarding symptom dimensions. Further studies to confirm the clinical importance of COMT SNPs in OCD are warranted. PMID:26687156

  2. Characterization and structure of DhpI, a phosphonate O-methyltransferase involved in dehydrophos biosynthesis

    SciTech Connect

    Lee, Jin-Hee; Bae, Brian; Kuemin, Michael; Circello, Benjamin T.; Metcalf, William W.; Nair, Satish K.; van der Donk, Wilfred A.

    2012-03-15

    Phosphonate natural products possess a range of biological activities as a consequence of their ability to mimic phosphate esters or tetrahedral intermediates formed in enzymatic reactions involved in carboxyl group metabolism. The dianionic form of these compounds at pH 7 poses a drawback with respect to their ability to mimic carboxylates and tetrahedral intermediates. Microorganisms producing phosphonates have evolved two solutions to overcome this hurdle: biosynthesis of monoanionic phosphinates containing two P-C bonds or esterification of the phosphonate group. The latter solution was first discovered for the antibiotic dehydrophos that contains a methyl ester of a phosphonodehydroalanine group. We report here the expression, purification, substrate scope, and structure of the O-methyltransferase from the dehydrophos biosynthetic gene cluster. The enzyme utilizes S-adenosylmethionine to methylate a variety of phosphonates including 1-hydroxyethylphosphonate, 1,2-dihydroxyethylphosphonate, and acetyl-1-aminoethylphosphonate. Kinetic analysis showed that the best substrates are tripeptides containing as C-terminal residue a phosphonate analog of alanine suggesting the enzyme acts late in the biosynthesis of dehydrophos. These conclusions are corroborated by the X-ray structure that reveals an active site that can accommodate a tripeptide substrate. Furthermore, the structural studies demonstrate a conformational change brought about by substrate or product binding. Interestingly, the enzyme has low substrate specificity and was used to methylate the clinical antibiotic fosfomycin and the antimalaria clinical candidate fosmidomycin, showing its promise for applications in bioengineering.

  3. Characterization and structure of DhpI, a phosphonate O-methyltransferase involved in dehydrophos biosynthesis.

    PubMed

    Lee, Jin-Hee; Bae, Brian; Kuemin, Michael; Circello, Benjamin T; Metcalf, William W; Nair, Satish K; van der Donk, Wilfred A

    2010-10-12

    Phosphonate natural products possess a range of biological activities as a consequence of their ability to mimic phosphate esters or tetrahedral intermediates formed in enzymatic reactions involved in carboxyl group metabolism. The dianionic form of these compounds at pH 7 poses a drawback with respect to their ability to mimic carboxylates and tetrahedral intermediates. Microorganisms producing phosphonates have evolved two solutions to overcome this hurdle: biosynthesis of monoanionic phosphinates containing two P-C bonds or esterification of the phosphonate group. The latter solution was first discovered for the antibiotic dehydrophos that contains a methyl ester of a phosphonodehydroalanine group. We report here the expression, purification, substrate scope, and structure of the O-methyltransferase from the dehydrophos biosynthetic gene cluster. The enzyme utilizes S-adenosylmethionine to methylate a variety of phosphonates including 1-hydroxyethylphosphonate, 1,2-dihydroxyethylphosphonate, and acetyl-1-aminoethylphosphonate. Kinetic analysis showed that the best substrates are tripeptides containing as C-terminal residue a phosphonate analog of alanine suggesting the enzyme acts late in the biosynthesis of dehydrophos. These conclusions are corroborated by the X-ray structure that reveals an active site that can accommodate a tripeptide substrate. Furthermore, the structural studies demonstrate a conformational change brought about by substrate or product binding. Interestingly, the enzyme has low substrate specificity and was used to methylate the clinical antibiotic fosfomycin and the antimalaria clinical candidate fosmidomycin, showing its promise for applications in bioengineering. PMID:20876132

  4. Catechol-o-methyltransferase genotype and childhood trauma may interact to impact schizotypal personality traits.

    PubMed

    Savitz, Jonathan; van der Merwe, Lize; Newman, Timothy K; Stein, Dan J; Ramesar, Raj

    2010-05-01

    We attempt to identify gene by childhood abuse interactions which predispose to the development of schizotypal traits in a familial bipolar disorder (BD) sample. Self-report measures of schizotypal personality traits (Schizotypal Personality Scale) and childhood maltreatment (Childhood Trauma Questionnaire) were administered to 222 participants from 44 families with BD. Variants of catechol-o-methyltransferase (COMT) and four other dopamine pathway-related genes: DRD4, DRD2,MAOA, and SLC6A3, were typed. BD type I (BD I) subjects scored significantly higher than their unaffected relatives on the Schizotypal Personality Scale. The val allele of the Val158 Met polymorphism of the COMT gene was associated with increased schizotypal personality trait scores in individuals exposed to higher levels of self-reported childhood trauma (p < 0.05). There was no direct effect of the val158met polymorphism on schizotypal personality traits. Further, no passive correlation between COMT genotype and childhood trauma was found. We raise the possibility that genetically-driven variation in COMT may interact with childhood trauma to contribute to the risk of developing schizotypal personality traits. PMID:20033274

  5. An Engineered Monolignol 4-O-Methyltransferase Depresses Lignin Biosynthesis and Confers Novel Metabolic Capability in Arabidopsis[C][W][OA

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Kewei; Bhuiya, Mohammad-Wadud; Pazo, Jorge Rencoret; Miao, Yuchen; Kim, Hoon; Ralph, John; Liu, Chang-Jun

    2012-01-01

    Although the practice of protein engineering is industrially fruitful in creating biocatalysts and therapeutic proteins, applications of analogous techniques in the field of plant metabolic engineering are still in their infancy. Lignins are aromatic natural polymers derived from the oxidative polymerization of primarily three different hydroxycinnamyl alcohols, the monolignols. Polymerization of lignin starts with the oxidation of monolignols, followed by endwise cross-coupling of (radicals of) a monolignol and the growing oligomer/polymer. The para-hydroxyl of each monolignol is crucial for radical generation and subsequent coupling. Here, we describe the structure-function analysis and catalytic improvement of an artificial monolignol 4-O-methyltransferase created by iterative saturation mutagenesis and its use in modulating lignin and phenylpropanoid biosynthesis. We show that expressing the created enzyme in planta, thus etherifying the para-hydroxyls of lignin monomeric precursors, denies the derived monolignols any participation in the subsequent coupling process, substantially reducing lignification and, ultimately, lignin content. Concomitantly, the transgenic plants accumulated de novo synthesized 4-O-methylated soluble phenolics and wall-bound esters. The lower lignin levels of transgenic plants resulted in higher saccharification yields. Our study, through a structure-based protein engineering approach, offers a novel strategy for modulating phenylpropanoid/lignin biosynthesis to improve cell wall digestibility and diversify the repertories of biologically active compounds. PMID:22851762

  6. Effect of a natural mineral-rich water on catechol-O-methyltransferase function.

    PubMed

    Bastos, Pedro; Araújo, João Ricardo; Azevedo, Isabel; Martins, Maria João; Ribeiro, Laura

    2014-01-01

    Catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) is a magnesium-dependent, catecholamine-metabolizing enzyme, whose impaired activity has been positively associated with cardiovascular diseases, particularly hypertension. Consumption of some natural mineral-rich waters has been shown to exert protective effects on cardiovascular risk factors, eg. by decreasing arterial blood pressure and blood lipids. However, the molecular mechanisms underlying these effects are still poorly understood. So, the aim of this work was to investigate the effect of natural mineral-rich water ingestion upon liver and adrenal glands COMT expression and activity in Wistar Han rats. Over a seven-week period, animals had access to one of the following three drinking solutions: 1) tap water (control group; TW), 2) tap water with added Na(+) (to make the same concentration as in the MW group (TWNaCl group), or 3) natural mineral-rich water [Pedras Salgadas(®), which is very rich in bicarbonate, and with higher sodium, calcium and magnesium content than control tap water (MW group)]. COMT expression and activity were determined by RT-PCR and HPLC-ED, respectively. A higher hepatic COMT activity was found in the MW group compared with the TW and TWNaCl groups. On the other hand, adrenal gland COMT mRNA expression decreased in the MW group compared to TW group. In conclusion, the ability of natural mineral-rich waters to increase hepatic COMT activity may eventually explain the positive cardiovascular effects associated with the consumption of some natural mineral-rich waters. PMID:25560240

  7. Isolation and Characterization of O-methyltransferases Involved in the Biosynthesis of Glaucine in Glaucium flavum.

    PubMed

    Chang, Limei; Hagel, Jillian M; Facchini, Peter J

    2015-10-01

    Transcriptome resources for the medicinal plant Glaucium flavum were searched for orthologs showing identity with characterized O-methyltransferases (OMTs) involved in benzylisoquinoline alkaloid biosynthesis. Seven recombinant proteins were functionally tested using the signature alkaloid substrates for six OMTs: norlaudanosoline 6-OMT, 6-O-methyllaudanosoline 4'-OMT, reticuline 7-OMT, norreticuline 7-OMT, scoulerine 9-OMT, and tetrahydrocolumbamine OMT. A notable alkaloid in yellow horned poppy (G. flavum [GFL]) is the aporphine alkaloid glaucine, which displays C8-C6' coupling and four O-methyl groups at C6, C7, C3', and C4' as numbered on the 1-benzylisoquinoline scaffold. Three recombinant enzymes accepted 1-benzylisoquinolines with differential substrate and regiospecificity. GFLOMT2 displayed the highest amino acid sequence identity with norlaudanosoline 6-OMT, showed a preference for the 6-O-methylation of norlaudanosoline, and O-methylated the 3' and 4' hydroxyl groups of certain alkaloids. GFLOMT1 showed the highest sequence identity with 6-O-methyllaudanosoline 4'OMT and catalyzed the 6-O-methylation of norlaudanosoline, but more efficiently 4'-O-methylated the GFLOMT2 reaction product 6-O-methylnorlaudanosoline and its N-methylated derivative 6-O-methyllaudanosoline. GFLOMT1 also effectively 3'-O-methylated both reticuline and norreticuline. GFLOMT6 was most similar to scoulerine 9-OMT and efficiently catalyzed both 3'- and 7'-O-methylations of several 1-benzylisoquinolines, with a preference for N-methylated substrates. All active enzymes accepted scoulerine and tetrahydrocolumbamine. Exogenous norlaudanosoline was converted to tetra-O-methylated laudanosine using combinations of Escherichia coli producing (1) GFLOMT1, (2) either GFLOMT2 or GFLOMT6, and (3) coclaurine N-methyltransferase from Coptis japonica. Expression profiles of GFLOMT1, GFLOMT2, and GFLOMT6 in different plant organs were in agreement with the O-methylation patterns of alkaloids in

  8. Computational Investigation of the Interplay of Substrate Positioning and Reactivity in Catechol O-Methyltransferase

    PubMed Central

    Patra, Niladri; Ioannidis, Efthymios I.

    2016-01-01

    Catechol O-methyltransferase (COMT) is a SAM- and Mg2+-dependent methyltransferase that regulates neurotransmitters through methylation. Simulations and experiments have identified divergent catecholamine substrate orientations in the COMT active site: molecular dynamics simulations have favored a monodentate coordination of catecholate substrates to the active site Mg2+, and crystal structures instead preserve bidentate coordination along with short (2.65 Å) methyl donor-acceptor distances. We carry out longer dynamics (up to 350 ns) to quantify interconversion between bidentate and monodentate binding poses. We provide a systematic determination of the relative free energy of the monodentate and bidentate structures in order to identify whether structural differences alter the nature of the methyl transfer mechanism and source of enzymatic rate enhancement. We demonstrate that the bidentate and monodentate binding modes are close in energy but separated by a 7 kcal/mol free energy barrier. Analysis of interactions in the two binding modes reveals that the driving force for monodentate catecholate orientations in classical molecular dynamics simulations is derived from stronger electrostatic stabilization afforded by alternate Mg2+ coordination with strongly charged active site carboxylates. Mixed semi-empirical-classical (SQM/MM) substrate C-O distances (2.7 Å) for the bidentate case are in excellent agreement with COMT X-ray crystal structures, as long as charge transfer between the substrates, Mg2+, and surrounding ligands is permitted. SQM/MM free energy barriers for methyl transfer from bidentate and monodentate catecholate configurations are comparable at around 21–22 kcal/mol, in good agreement with experiment (18–19 kcal/mol). Overall, the work suggests that both binding poses are viable for methyl transfer, and accurate descriptions of charge transfer and electrostatics are needed to provide balanced relative barriers when multiple binding poses are

  9. Aroma biosynthesis in strawberry: s-adenosylmethionine:furaneol o-methyltransferase activity in ripening fruits.

    PubMed

    Lavid, Noa; Schwab, Wilfried; Kafkas, Ebru; Koch-Dean, Margery; Bar, Einat; Larkov, Olga; Ravid, Uzi; Lewinsohn, Efraim

    2002-07-01

    Among the most important volatile compounds in the aroma of strawberries are 2,5-dimethyl-4-hydroxy-3(2H)-furanone (Furaneol) and its methoxy derivative (methoxyfuraneol, mesifuran). Three strawberry varieties, Malach, Tamar, and Yael, were assessed for total volatiles, Furaneol, and methoxyfuraneol. The content of these compounds sharply increased during fruit ripening, with maximum values at the ripe stage. An enzymatic activity that transfers a methyl group from S-adenosylmethionine (SAM) to Furaneol sharply increases during ripening of strawberry fruits. The in vitro generated methoxyfuraneol was identified by radio-TLC and GC-MS. The partially purified enzyme had a native molecular mass of approximately 80 kDa, with optimum activity at pH 8.5 and 37 degrees C. A high apparent K(m) of 5 mM was calculated for Furaneol, whereas this enzyme preparation apparently accepted as substrates other o-dihydroxyphenol derivatives (such as catechol, caffeic acid, and protocatechuic aldehyde) with much higher affinities (K(m) approximately 105, 130, and 20 microM, respectively). A K(m) for SAM was found to be approximately 5 microM, regardless of the acceptor used. Substrates that contained a phenolic group with only one OH group, such as p-coumaric and trans-ferulic acid, as well as trans-anol and coniferyl alcohol, were apparently not accepted by this activity. It is suggested that Furaneol methylation is mediated by an O-methyltransferase activity and that this activity increases during fruit ripening. PMID:12083877

  10. Cloning, Functional Characterization, and Catalytic Mechanism of a Bergaptol O-Methyltransferase from Peucedanum praeruptorum Dunn

    PubMed Central

    Zhao, Yucheng; Wang, Nana; Zeng, Zhixiong; Xu, Sheng; Huang, Chuanlong; Wang, Wei; Liu, Tingting; Luo, Jun; Kong, Lingyi

    2016-01-01

    Coumarins are main active components of Peucedanum praeruptorum Dunn. Among them, methoxylated coumarin compound, such as bergapten, xanthotoxin, and isopimpinellin, has high officinal value and plays an important role in medicinal field. However, major issues associated with the biosynthesis mechanism of coumarins remain unsolved and no corresponding enzyme has been cloned from P. praeruptorum. In this study, a local BLASTN program was conducted to find the candidate genes from P. praeruptorum transcriptome database using the nucleotide sequence of Ammi majus bergaptol O-methyltransferase (AmBMT, GenBank accession No: AY443006) as a template. As a result, a 1335 bp full-length of cDNA sequence which contains an open reading frame of 1080 bp encoding a BMT polypeptide of 359 amino acids was obtained. The recombinant protein was functionally expressed in Escherichia coli and displayed an observed activity to bergaptol. In vitro experiments show that the protein has narrow substrate specificity for bergaptol. Expression profile indicated that the cloned gene had a higher expression level in roots and can be induced by methyl jasmonate (MeJA). Subcellular localization analysis showed that the BMT protein was located in cytoplasm in planta. Homology modeling and docking based site-directed mutagenesis have been employed to investigate the amino acid residues in BMT required for substrate binding and catalysis. Conservative amino acid substitutions at residue H264 affected BMT catalysis, whereas substitutions at residues F171, M175, D226, and L312 affected substrate binding. The systemic study summarized here will enlarge our knowledge on OMTs and provide useful information in investigating the coumarins biosynthesis mechanism in P. praeruptorum. PMID:27252733

  11. Cloning, Functional Characterization, and Catalytic Mechanism of a Bergaptol O-Methyltransferase from Peucedanum praeruptorum Dunn.

    PubMed

    Zhao, Yucheng; Wang, Nana; Zeng, Zhixiong; Xu, Sheng; Huang, Chuanlong; Wang, Wei; Liu, Tingting; Luo, Jun; Kong, Lingyi

    2016-01-01

    Coumarins are main active components of Peucedanum praeruptorum Dunn. Among them, methoxylated coumarin compound, such as bergapten, xanthotoxin, and isopimpinellin, has high officinal value and plays an important role in medicinal field. However, major issues associated with the biosynthesis mechanism of coumarins remain unsolved and no corresponding enzyme has been cloned from P. praeruptorum. In this study, a local BLASTN program was conducted to find the candidate genes from P. praeruptorum transcriptome database using the nucleotide sequence of Ammi majus bergaptol O-methyltransferase (AmBMT, GenBank accession No: AY443006) as a template. As a result, a 1335 bp full-length of cDNA sequence which contains an open reading frame of 1080 bp encoding a BMT polypeptide of 359 amino acids was obtained. The recombinant protein was functionally expressed in Escherichia coli and displayed an observed activity to bergaptol. In vitro experiments show that the protein has narrow substrate specificity for bergaptol. Expression profile indicated that the cloned gene had a higher expression level in roots and can be induced by methyl jasmonate (MeJA). Subcellular localization analysis showed that the BMT protein was located in cytoplasm in planta. Homology modeling and docking based site-directed mutagenesis have been employed to investigate the amino acid residues in BMT required for substrate binding and catalysis. Conservative amino acid substitutions at residue H264 affected BMT catalysis, whereas substitutions at residues F171, M175, D226, and L312 affected substrate binding. The systemic study summarized here will enlarge our knowledge on OMTs and provide useful information in investigating the coumarins biosynthesis mechanism in P. praeruptorum. PMID:27252733

  12. Computational Investigation of the Interplay of Substrate Positioning and Reactivity in Catechol O-Methyltransferase.

    PubMed

    Patra, Niladri; Ioannidis, Efthymios I; Kulik, Heather J

    2016-01-01

    Catechol O-methyltransferase (COMT) is a SAM- and Mg2+-dependent methyltransferase that regulates neurotransmitters through methylation. Simulations and experiments have identified divergent catecholamine substrate orientations in the COMT active site: molecular dynamics simulations have favored a monodentate coordination of catecholate substrates to the active site Mg2+, and crystal structures instead preserve bidentate coordination along with short (2.65 Å) methyl donor-acceptor distances. We carry out longer dynamics (up to 350 ns) to quantify interconversion between bidentate and monodentate binding poses. We provide a systematic determination of the relative free energy of the monodentate and bidentate structures in order to identify whether structural differences alter the nature of the methyl transfer mechanism and source of enzymatic rate enhancement. We demonstrate that the bidentate and monodentate binding modes are close in energy but separated by a 7 kcal/mol free energy barrier. Analysis of interactions in the two binding modes reveals that the driving force for monodentate catecholate orientations in classical molecular dynamics simulations is derived from stronger electrostatic stabilization afforded by alternate Mg2+ coordination with strongly charged active site carboxylates. Mixed semi-empirical-classical (SQM/MM) substrate C-O distances (2.7 Å) for the bidentate case are in excellent agreement with COMT X-ray crystal structures, as long as charge transfer between the substrates, Mg2+, and surrounding ligands is permitted. SQM/MM free energy barriers for methyl transfer from bidentate and monodentate catecholate configurations are comparable at around 21-22 kcal/mol, in good agreement with experiment (18-19 kcal/mol). Overall, the work suggests that both binding poses are viable for methyl transfer, and accurate descriptions of charge transfer and electrostatics are needed to provide balanced relative barriers when multiple binding poses are

  13. Genetic analysis of strawberry fruit aroma and identification of O-methyltransferase FaOMT as the locus controlling natural variation in mesifurane content.

    PubMed

    Zorrilla-Fontanesi, Yasmín; Rambla, José-Luis; Cabeza, Amalia; Medina, Juan J; Sánchez-Sevilla, José F; Valpuesta, Victoriano; Botella, Miguel A; Granell, Antonio; Amaya, Iraida

    2012-06-01

    Improvement of strawberry (Fragaria × ananassa) fruit flavor is an important goal in breeding programs. To investigate genetic factors controlling this complex trait, a strawberry mapping population derived from genotype '1392', selected for its superior flavor, and '232' was profiled for volatile compounds over 4 years by headspace solid phase microextraction coupled to gas chromatography and mass spectrometry. More than 300 volatile compounds were detected, of which 87 were identified by comparison of mass spectrum and retention time to those of pure standards. Parental line '1392' displayed higher volatile levels than '232', and these and many other compounds with similar levels in both parents segregated in the progeny. Cluster analysis grouped the volatiles into distinct chemically related families and revealed a complex metabolic network underlying volatile production in strawberry fruit. Quantitative trait loci (QTL) detection was carried out over 3 years based on a double pseudo-testcross strategy. Seventy QTLs covering 48 different volatiles were detected, with several of them being stable over time and mapped as major QTLs. Loci controlling γ-decalactone and mesifurane content were mapped as qualitative traits. Using a candidate gene approach we have assigned genes that are likely responsible for several of the QTLs. As a proof of concept we show that one homoeolog of the O-methyltransferase gene (FaOMT) is the locus responsible for the natural variation of mesifurane content. Sequence analysis identified 30 bp in the promoter of this FaOMT homoeolog containing putative binding sites for basic/helix-loop-helix, MYB, and BZIP transcription factors. This polymorphism fully cosegregates with both the presence of mesifurane and the high expression of FaOMT during ripening. PMID:22474217

  14. The Crystal Structure of the Novobiocin Biosynthetic Enzyme NovP: The First Representative Structure for the TylF O-Methyltransferase Superfamily

    PubMed Central

    García, Inmaculada Gómez; Stevenson, Clare E. M.; Usón, Isabel; Meyers, Caren L. Freel; Walsh, Christopher T.; Lawson, David M.

    2009-01-01

    Summary NovP is an S-adenosyl-L-methionine-dependent O-methyltransferase that catalyses the penultimate step in the biosynthesis of the aminocoumarin antibiotic novobiocin. Specifically, it methylates at the 4-OH of the noviose moiety, and the resultant methoxy group is important for the potency of the mature antibiotic: previous crystallographic studies have shown that this group interacts directly with the target enzyme DNA gyrase, which is a validated drug target. We have determined the high resolution crystal structure of NovP from Streptomyces spheroides as a binary complex with its desmethylated co-substrate, S-adenosyl-L-homocysteine. The structure displays a typical class I methyltransferase fold, in addition to motifs that are consistent with a divalent metal-dependent mechanism. This is the first representative structure of a methyltransferase from the TylF superfamily, which includes a number of enzymes implicated in the biosynthesis of antibiotics and other therapeutics. The NovP structure reveals a number of distinctive structural features that, based on sequence conservation, are likely to be characteristic of the superfamily. These include a helical 'lid' region that gates access to the co-substrate binding pocket, and an active centre that contains a 3-Asp putative metal-binding site. A further conserved Asp likely acts as the general base that initiates the reaction by deprotonating the 4-OH group of the noviose unit. Using in silico docking we have generated models of the enzyme-substrate complex that are consistent with the proposed mechanism. Furthermore, these models suggest that NovP is unlikely to tolerate significant modifications at the noviose moiety, but could show increasing substrate promiscuity as a function of the distance of the modification from the methylation site. These observations could inform future attempts to utilise NovP for methylating a range of glycosylated compounds. PMID:19857499

  15. New erythromycin derivatives from Saccharopolyspora erythraea using sugar O-methyltransferases from the spinosyn biosynthetic gene cluster.

    PubMed

    Gaisser, S; Lill, R; Wirtz, G; Grolle, F; Staunton, J; Leadlay, P F

    2001-09-01

    Using a previously developed expression system based on the erythromycin-producing strain of Saccharopolyspora erythraea, O-methyltransferases from the spinosyn biosynthetic gene cluster of Saccharopolyspora spinosa have been shown to modify a rhamnosyl sugar attached to a 14-membered polyketide macrolactone. The spnI, spnK and spnH methyltransferase genes were expressed individually in the S. erythraea mutant SGT2, which is blocked both in endogenous macrolide biosynthesis and in ery glycosyltransferases eryBV and eryCIII. Exogenous 3-O-rhamnosyl-erythronolide B was efficiently converted into 3-O-(2'-O-methylrhamnosyl)-erythronolide B by the S. erythraea SGT2 (spnI) strain only. When 3-O-(2'-O-methylrhamnosyl)-erythronolide B was, in turn, fed to a culture of S. erythraea SGT2 (spnK), 3-O-(2',3'-bis-O-methylrhamnosyl)-erythronolide B was identified in the culture supernatant, whereas S. erythraea SGT2 (spnH) was without effect. These results confirm the identity of the 2'- and 3'-O-methyltransferases, and the specific sequence in which they act, and they demonstrate that these methyltransferases may be used to methylate rhamnose units in other polyketide natural products with the same specificity as in the spinosyn pathway. In contrast, 3-O-(2',3'-bis-O-methylrhamnosyl)-erythronolide B was found not to be a substrate for the 4'-O-methyltransferase SpnH. Although rhamnosylerythromycins did not serve directly as substrates for the spinosyn methyltransferases, methylrhamnosyl-erythromycins were obtained by subsequent conversion of the corresponding methylrhamnosyl-erythronolide precursors using the S. erythraea strain SGT2 housing EryCIII, the desosaminyltransferase of the erythromycin pathway. 3-O-(2'-O-methylrhamnosyl)-erythromycin D was tested and found to be significantly active against a strain of erythromycin-sensitive Bacillus subtilis. PMID:11555300

  16. Biosynthesis of t-Anethole in Anise: Characterization of t-Anol/Isoeugenol Synthase and an O-Methyltransferase Specific for a C7-C8 Propenyl Side Chain1[W][OA

    PubMed Central

    Koeduka, Takao; Baiga, Thomas J.; Noel, Joseph P.; Pichersky, Eran

    2009-01-01

    The phenylpropene t-anethole imparts the characteristic sweet aroma of anise (Pimpinella anisum, family Apiaceae) seeds and leaves. Here we report that the aerial parts of the anise plant accumulate t-anethole as the plant matures, with the highest levels of t-anethole found in fruits. Although the anise plant is covered with trichomes, t-anethole accumulates inside the leaves and not in the trichomes or the epidermal cell layer. We have obtained anise cDNA encoding t-anol/isoeugenol synthase 1 (AIS1), an NADPH-dependent enzyme that can biosynthesize t-anol and isoeugenol (the latter not found in anise) from coumaryl acetate and coniferyl acetate, respectively. In addition, we have obtained a cDNA encoding S-[methyl-14C]adenosyl-l-methionine:t-anol/isoeugenol O-methyltransferase 1 (AIMT1), an enzyme that can convert t-anol or isoeugenol to t-anethole or methylisoeugenol, respectively, via methylation of the para-OH group. The genes encoding AIS1 and AIMT1 were expressed throughout the plant and their transcript levels were highest in developing fruits. The AIS1 protein is 59% identical to petunia (Petunia hybrida) isoeugenol synthase 1 and displays apparent Km values of 145 μm for coumaryl acetate and 230 μm for coniferyl acetate. AIMT1 prefers isoeugenol to t-anol by a factor of 2, with Km values of 19.3 μm for isoeugenol and 54.5 μm for S-[methyl-14C]adenosyl-l-methionine. The AIMT1 protein sequence is approximately 40% identical to basil (Ocimum basilicum) and Clarkia breweri phenylpropene O-methyltransferases, but unlike these enzymes, which do not show large discrimination between substrates with isomeric propenyl side chains, AIMT1 shows a 10-fold preference for t-anol over chavicol and for isoeugenol over eugenol. PMID:18987218

  17. Effects of Active-Site Modification and Quaternary Structure on the Regioselectivity of Catechol-O-Methyltransferase.

    PubMed

    Law, Brian J C; Bennett, Matthew R; Thompson, Mark L; Levy, Colin; Shepherd, Sarah A; Leys, David; Micklefield, Jason

    2016-02-18

    Catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT), an important therapeutic target in the treatment of Parkinson's disease, is also being developed for biocatalytic processes, including vanillin production, although lack of regioselectivity has precluded its more widespread application. By using structural and mechanistic information, regiocomplementary COMT variants were engineered that deliver either meta- or para-methylated catechols. X-ray crystallography further revealed how the active-site residues and quaternary structure govern regioselectivity. Finally, analogues of AdoMet are accepted by the regiocomplementary COMT mutants and can be used to prepare alkylated catechols, including ethyl vanillin. PMID:26797714

  18. Downregulation of a putative plastid PDC E1α subunit impairs photosynthetic activity and triacylglycerol accumulation in nitrogen-starved photoautotrophic Chlamydomonas reinhardtii

    PubMed Central

    Shtaida, Nastassia; Khozin-Goldberg, Inna; Solovchenko, Alexei; Chekanov, Konstantin; Didi-Cohen, Shoshana; Leu, Stefan; Cohen, Zvi; Boussiba, Sammy

    2014-01-01

    The chloroplast pyruvate dehydrogenase complex (cpPDC) catalyses the oxidative decarboxylation of pyruvate forming acetyl-CoA, an immediate primer for the initial reactions of de novo fatty acid (FA) synthesis. Little is known about the source of acetyl-CoA in the chloroplasts of photosynthetic microalgae, which are capable of producing high amounts of the storage lipid triacylglycerol (TAG) under conditions of nutrient stresses. We generated Chlamydomonas reinhardtii CC-1618 mutants with decreased expression of the PDC2_E1α gene, encoding the putative chloroplast pyruvate dehydrogenase subunit E1α, using artificial microRNA. A comparative study on the effects of PDC2_E1α silencing on FAs and TAG production in C. reinhardtii, grown photoautotrophically and mixotrophically, with and without a nitrogen source in the nutrient medium, was carried out. Reduced expression of PDC2 _E1α led to a severely hampered photoautotrophic growth phenotype with drastic impairment in TAG accumulation under nitrogen deprivation. In the presence of acetate, downregulation of PDC2_E1α exerted little to no effect on TAG production and photosynthetic activity. In contrast, under photoautotrophic conditions, especially in the absence of a nitrogen source, a dramatic decline in photosynthetic oxygen evolution and photosystem II quantum yield against a background of the apparent over-reduction of the photosynthetic electron chain was recorded. Our results suggest an essential role of cpPDC in the supply of carbon precursors for de novo FA synthesis in microalgae under conditions of photoautotrophy. A shortage of this supply is detrimental to the nitrogen-starvation-induced synthesis of storage TAG, an important carbon and energy sink in stressed Chlamydomonas cells, thereby impairing the acclimation ability of the microalga. PMID:25210079

  19. Downregulation of a putative plastid PDC E1α subunit impairs photosynthetic activity and triacylglycerol accumulation in nitrogen-starved photoautotrophic Chlamydomonas reinhardtii.

    PubMed

    Shtaida, Nastassia; Khozin-Goldberg, Inna; Solovchenko, Alexei; Chekanov, Konstantin; Didi-Cohen, Shoshana; Leu, Stefan; Cohen, Zvi; Boussiba, Sammy

    2014-12-01

    The chloroplast pyruvate dehydrogenase complex (cpPDC) catalyses the oxidative decarboxylation of pyruvate forming acetyl-CoA, an immediate primer for the initial reactions of de novo fatty acid (FA) synthesis. Little is known about the source of acetyl-CoA in the chloroplasts of photosynthetic microalgae, which are capable of producing high amounts of the storage lipid triacylglycerol (TAG) under conditions of nutrient stresses. We generated Chlamydomonas reinhardtii CC-1618 mutants with decreased expression of the PDC2_E1α gene, encoding the putative chloroplast pyruvate dehydrogenase subunit E1α, using artificial microRNA. A comparative study on the effects of PDC2_E1α silencing on FAs and TAG production in C. reinhardtii, grown photoautotrophically and mixotrophically, with and without a nitrogen source in the nutrient medium, was carried out. Reduced expression of PDC2 _E1α led to a severely hampered photoautotrophic growth phenotype with drastic impairment in TAG accumulation under nitrogen deprivation. In the presence of acetate, downregulation of PDC2_E1α exerted little to no effect on TAG production and photosynthetic activity. In contrast, under photoautotrophic conditions, especially in the absence of a nitrogen source, a dramatic decline in photosynthetic oxygen evolution and photosystem II quantum yield against a background of the apparent over-reduction of the photosynthetic electron chain was recorded. Our results suggest an essential role of cpPDC in the supply of carbon precursors for de novo FA synthesis in microalgae under conditions of photoautotrophy. A shortage of this supply is detrimental to the nitrogen-starvation-induced synthesis of storage TAG, an important carbon and energy sink in stressed Chlamydomonas cells, thereby impairing the acclimation ability of the microalga. PMID:25210079

  20. An O-Methyltransferase Is Required for Infection of Tick Cells by Anaplasma phagocytophilum

    PubMed Central

    Oliva Chávez, Adela S.; Fairman, James W.; Felsheim, Roderick F.; Nelson, Curtis M.; Herron, Michael J.; Higgins, LeeAnn; Burkhardt, Nicole Y.; Oliver, Jonathan D.; Markowski, Todd W.; Kurtti, Timothy J.; Edwards, Thomas E.; Munderloh, Ulrike G.

    2015-01-01

    Anaplasma phagocytophilum, the causative agent of Human Granulocytic Anaplasmosis (HGA), is an obligately intracellular α-proteobacterium that is transmitted by Ixodes spp ticks. However, the pathogen is not transovarially transmitted between tick generations and therefore needs to survive in both a mammalian host and the arthropod vector to complete its life cycle. To adapt to different environments, pathogens rely on differential gene expression as well as the modification of proteins and other molecules. Random transposon mutagenesis of A. phagocytophilum resulted in an insertion within the coding region of an o-methyltransferase (omt) family 3 gene. In wild-type bacteria, expression of omt was up-regulated during binding to tick cells (ISE6) at 2 hr post-inoculation, but nearly absent by 4 hr p.i. Gene disruption reduced bacterial binding to ISE6 cells, and the mutant bacteria that were able to enter the cells were arrested in their replication and development. Analyses of the proteomes of wild-type versus mutant bacteria during binding to ISE6 cells identified Major Surface Protein 4 (Msp4), but also hypothetical protein APH_0406, as the most differentially methylated. Importantly, two glutamic acid residues (the targets of the OMT) were methyl-modified in wild-type Msp4, whereas a single asparagine (not a target of the OMT) was methylated in APH_0406. In vitro methylation assays demonstrated that recombinant OMT specifically methylated Msp4. Towards a greater understanding of the overall structure and catalytic activity of the OMT, we solved the apo (PDB_ID:4OA8), the S-adenosine homocystein-bound (PDB_ID:4OA5), the SAH-Mn2+ bound (PDB_ID:4PCA), and SAM- Mn2+ bound (PDB_ID:4PCL) X-ray crystal structures of the enzyme. Here, we characterized a mutation in A. phagocytophilum that affected the ability of the bacteria to productively infect cells from its natural vector. Nevertheless, due to the lack of complementation, we cannot rule out secondary mutations

  1. An O-Methyltransferase Is Required for Infection of Tick Cells by Anaplasma phagocytophilum.

    PubMed

    Oliva Chávez, Adela S; Fairman, James W; Felsheim, Roderick F; Nelson, Curtis M; Herron, Michael J; Higgins, LeeAnn; Burkhardt, Nicole Y; Oliver, Jonathan D; Markowski, Todd W; Kurtti, Timothy J; Edwards, Thomas E; Munderloh, Ulrike G

    2015-01-01

    Anaplasma phagocytophilum, the causative agent of Human Granulocytic Anaplasmosis (HGA), is an obligately intracellular α-proteobacterium that is transmitted by Ixodes spp ticks. However, the pathogen is not transovarially transmitted between tick generations and therefore needs to survive in both a mammalian host and the arthropod vector to complete its life cycle. To adapt to different environments, pathogens rely on differential gene expression as well as the modification of proteins and other molecules. Random transposon mutagenesis of A. phagocytophilum resulted in an insertion within the coding region of an o-methyltransferase (omt) family 3 gene. In wild-type bacteria, expression of omt was up-regulated during binding to tick cells (ISE6) at 2 hr post-inoculation, but nearly absent by 4 hr p.i. Gene disruption reduced bacterial binding to ISE6 cells, and the mutant bacteria that were able to enter the cells were arrested in their replication and development. Analyses of the proteomes of wild-type versus mutant bacteria during binding to ISE6 cells identified Major Surface Protein 4 (Msp4), but also hypothetical protein APH_0406, as the most differentially methylated. Importantly, two glutamic acid residues (the targets of the OMT) were methyl-modified in wild-type Msp4, whereas a single asparagine (not a target of the OMT) was methylated in APH_0406. In vitro methylation assays demonstrated that recombinant OMT specifically methylated Msp4. Towards a greater understanding of the overall structure and catalytic activity of the OMT, we solved the apo (PDB_ID:4OA8), the S-adenosine homocystein-bound (PDB_ID:4OA5), the SAH-Mn2+ bound (PDB_ID:4PCA), and SAM- Mn2+ bound (PDB_ID:4PCL) X-ray crystal structures of the enzyme. Here, we characterized a mutation in A. phagocytophilum that affected the ability of the bacteria to productively infect cells from its natural vector. Nevertheless, due to the lack of complementation, we cannot rule out secondary mutations

  2. Crystal structures of human 108V and 108M catechol O-methyltransferase

    SciTech Connect

    Rutherford, K.; Le Trong, I.; Stenkamp, R.E.; Parson, W.W.

    2008-08-01

    Catechol O-methyltransferase (COMT) plays important roles in the metabolism of catecholamine neurotransmitters and catechol estrogens. The development of COMT inhibitors for use in the treatment of Parkinson's disease has been aided by crystallographic structures of the rat enzyme. However, the human and rat proteins have significantly different substrate specificities. Additionally, human COMT contains a common valine-methionine polymorphism at position 108. The methionine protein is less stable than the valine polymorph, resulting in decreased enzyme activity and protein levels in vivo. Here we describe the crystal structures of the 108V and 108M variants of the soluble form of human COMT bound with S-adenosylmethionine (SAM) and a substrate analog, 3,5-dinitrocatechol. The polymorphic residue 108 is located in the {alpha}5-{beta}3 loop, buried in a hydrophobic pocket {approx}16 {angstrom} from the SAM-binding site. The 108V and 108M structures are very similar overall [RMSD of C{sup {alpha}} atoms between two structures (C{sup {alpha}} RMSD) = 0.2 {angstrom}], and the active-site residues are superposable, in accord with the observation that SAM stabilizes 108M COMT. However, the methionine side chain is packed more tightly within the polymorphic site and, consequently, interacts more closely with residues A22 ({alpha}2) and R78 ({alpha}4) than does valine. These interactions of the larger methionine result in a 0.7-{angstrom} displacement in the backbone structure near residue 108, which propagates along {alpha}1 and {alpha}5 toward the SAM-binding site. Although the overall secondary structures of the human and rat proteins are very similar (C{sup {alpha}} RMSD = 0.4 {angstrom}), several nonconserved residues are present in the SAM-(I89M, I91M, C95Y) and catechol- (C173V, R201M, E202K) binding sites. The human protein also contains three additional solvent-exposed cysteine residues (C95, C173, C188) that may contribute to intermolecular disulfide bond

  3. Improvement of benzylisoquinoline alkaloid productivity by overexpression of 3'-hydroxy-N-methylcoclaurine 4'-O-methyltransferase in transgenic Coptis japonica plants.

    PubMed

    Inui, Takayuki; Kawano, Noriaki; Shitan, Nobukazu; Yazaki, Kazufumi; Kiuchi, Fumiyuki; Kawahara, Nobuo; Sato, Fumihiko; Yoshimatsu, Kayo

    2012-01-01

    Coptis japonica (Cj) rhizomes are used as a crude drug for gastroenteritis, since they accumulate antimicrobial berberine. Berberine also shows various useful bioactivities, including cholesterol-lowering activity. Unfortunately, Cj is a slow-growing plant and more than 5 years are required to obtain a crude drug suitable for the Japanese Pharmacopoeia. To improve alkaloid productivity, we overexpressed the 3'-hydroxy-N-methylcoclaurine 4'-O-methyltransferase (4'OMT) gene in Cj. We established the transgenic plant (named CjHE4') by introducing one copy of Cj4'OMT by Agrobacterium-mediated transformation. The successful overexpression of 4'OMT was confirmed in all tissues of CjHE4' by real-time polymerase chain reaction (PCR) analysis. HPLC analysis revealed that the berberine content of CjHE4' leaves and roots cultivated for 4 months was increased to 2.7- and 2.0-fold, respectively, compared with non-transgenic wild-type (CjWT), and these inductions of alkaloids were stable for at least 20 months. Furthermore, in CjHE4' cultivated for 20 months, the berberine content in medicinal parts, stems and rhizomes was significantly increased (1.6-fold). As a consequence, increased amounts of alkaloids in CjHE4' resulted in the improvement of berberine yields (1.5-fold), whereas CjHE4' showed slower growth than CjWT. These results indicated that 4'OMT is one of the key-step enzymes in berberine biosynthesis and is useful for metabolic engineering in Cj. PMID:22687397

  4. TALEN mediated targeted mutagenesis of the caffeic acid O-methyltransferase in highly polyploid sugarcane improves cell wall composition for production of bioethanol.

    PubMed

    Jung, Je Hyeong; Altpeter, Fredy

    2016-09-01

    Sugarcane (Saccharum spp. hybrids) is a prime crop for commercial biofuel production. Advanced conversion technology utilizes both, sucrose accumulating in sugarcane stems as well as cell wall bound sugars for commercial ethanol production. Reduction of lignin content significantly improves the conversion of lignocellulosic biomass into ethanol. Conventional mutagenesis is not expected to confer reduction in lignin content in sugarcane due to its high polyploidy (x = 10-13) and functional redundancy among homo(eo)logs. Here we deploy transcription activator-like effector nuclease (TALEN) to induce mutations in a highly conserved region of the caffeic acid O-methyltransferase (COMT) of sugarcane. Capillary electrophoresis (CE) was validated by pyrosequencing as reliable and inexpensive high throughput method for identification and quantitative characterization of TALEN mediated mutations. Targeted COMT mutations were identified by CE in up to 74 % of the lines. In different events 8-99 % of the wild type COMT were converted to mutant COMT as revealed by pyrosequencing. Mutation frequencies among mutant lines were positively correlated to lignin reduction. Events with a mutation frequency of 99 % displayed a 29-32 % reduction of the lignin content compared to non-transgenic controls along with significantly reduced S subunit content and elevated hemicellulose content. CE analysis displayed similar peak patterns between primary COMT mutants and their vegetative progenies suggesting that TALEN mediated mutations were faithfully transmitted to vegetative progenies. This is the first report on genome editing in sugarcane. The findings demonstrate that targeted mutagenesis can improve cell wall characteristics for production of lignocellulosic ethanol in crops with highly complex genomes. PMID:27306903

  5. Catechol-O-Methyltransferase "Val[superscript 158]Met" Genotype, Parenting Practices and Adolescent Alcohol Use: Testing the Differential Susceptibility Hypothesis

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Laucht, Manfred; Blomeyer, Dorothea; Buchmann, Arlette F.; Treutlein, Jens; Schmidt, Martin H.; Esser, Gunter; Jennen-Steinmetz, Christine; Rietschel, Marcella; Zimmermann, Ulrich S.; Banaschewski, Tobias

    2012-01-01

    Background: Recently, first evidence has been reported for a gene-parenting interaction (G x E) with regard to adolescent alcohol use. The present investigation set out to extend this research using the catechol-O-methyltransferase ("COMT") "Val[superscript 158]Met" polymorphism as a genetic susceptibility factor. Moreover, the current study…

  6. Determination of the structure and catalytic mechanism of Sorghum bicolor caffeic acid O-methyltransferase and the structural impact of three brown midrib12 mutations

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    With S-adenosylmethionine (SAM) acting as the methyl donor, caffeic acid O-methyltransferase from Sorghum bicolor (SbCOMT) methylates the 5-hydroxyl group of its preferred substrate, 5-hydroxyconiferaldehyde, to form sinapaldehyde. In order to determine the mechanism of SbCOMT and understand the red...

  7. Promoter variation in the catechol-O-methyltransferase gene is associated with remission of symptoms during fluvoxamine treatment for major depression.

    PubMed

    Fukui, Naoki; Suzuki, Yutaro; Sugai, Takuro; Watanabe, Junzo; Ono, Shin; Tsuneyama, Nobuto; Someya, Toshiyuki

    2014-08-30

    We investigated the association between remission of depressive symptoms in fluvoxamine treatment and catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) gene. Sixteen SNPs in the COMT gene were investigated in 123 outpatients with major depression. Three single nucleotide polymorphisms located in the 5' region were associated with remission in fluvoxamine-treated outpatients with moderate to severe depression. PMID:24814141

  8. Enhancing digestibility and ethanol yield of Populus wood via expression of an engineered monolignol 4-O-methyltransferase

    DOE PAGESBeta

    Cai, Yuanheng; Zhang, Kewei; Kim, Hoon; Hou, Guichuan; Zhang, Xuebin; Yang, Huijun; Feng, Huan; Miller, Lisa; Ralph, John; Liu, Chang -Jun

    2016-06-28

    Producing cellulosic biofuels and bio-based chemicals from woody biomass is impeded by the presence of lignin polymer in the plant cell wall. Manipulating the monolignol biosynthetic pathway offers a promising approach to improved processability, but often impairs plant growth and development. Here, we show that expressing an engineered 4-O-methyltransferase that chemically modifies the phenolic moiety of lignin monomeric precursors, thus preventing their incorporation into the lignin polymer, substantially alters hybrid aspens’ lignin content and structure. Woody biomass derived from the transgenic aspens shows a 62% increase in the release of simple sugars and up to a 49% increase in themore » yield of ethanol when the woody biomass is subjected to enzymatic digestion and yeast-mediated fermentation. Furthermore, the cell wall structural changes do not affect growth and biomass production of the trees. Our study provides a useful strategy for tailoring woody biomass for bio-based applications.« less

  9. Enhancing digestibility and ethanol yield of Populus wood via expression of an engineered monolignol 4-O-methyltransferase

    PubMed Central

    Cai, Yuanheng; Zhang, Kewei; Kim, Hoon; Hou, Guichuan; Zhang, Xuebin; Yang, Huijun; Feng, Huan; Miller, Lisa; Ralph, John; Liu, Chang-Jun

    2016-01-01

    Producing cellulosic biofuels and bio-based chemicals from woody biomass is impeded by the presence of lignin polymer in the plant cell wall. Manipulating the monolignol biosynthetic pathway offers a promising approach to improved processability, but often impairs plant growth and development. Here, we show that expressing an engineered 4-O-methyltransferase that chemically modifies the phenolic moiety of lignin monomeric precursors, thus preventing their incorporation into the lignin polymer, substantially alters hybrid aspens' lignin content and structure. Woody biomass derived from the transgenic aspens shows a 62% increase in the release of simple sugars and up to a 49% increase in the yield of ethanol when the woody biomass is subjected to enzymatic digestion and yeast-mediated fermentation. Moreover, the cell wall structural changes do not affect growth and biomass production of the trees. Our study provides a useful strategy for tailoring woody biomass for bio-based applications. PMID:27349324

  10. Enhancing digestibility and ethanol yield of Populus wood via expression of an engineered monolignol 4-O-methyltransferase.

    PubMed

    Cai, Yuanheng; Zhang, Kewei; Kim, Hoon; Hou, Guichuan; Zhang, Xuebin; Yang, Huijun; Feng, Huan; Miller, Lisa; Ralph, John; Liu, Chang-Jun

    2016-01-01

    Producing cellulosic biofuels and bio-based chemicals from woody biomass is impeded by the presence of lignin polymer in the plant cell wall. Manipulating the monolignol biosynthetic pathway offers a promising approach to improved processability, but often impairs plant growth and development. Here, we show that expressing an engineered 4-O-methyltransferase that chemically modifies the phenolic moiety of lignin monomeric precursors, thus preventing their incorporation into the lignin polymer, substantially alters hybrid aspens' lignin content and structure. Woody biomass derived from the transgenic aspens shows a 62% increase in the release of simple sugars and up to a 49% increase in the yield of ethanol when the woody biomass is subjected to enzymatic digestion and yeast-mediated fermentation. Moreover, the cell wall structural changes do not affect growth and biomass production of the trees. Our study provides a useful strategy for tailoring woody biomass for bio-based applications. PMID:27349324

  11. Sex-dependent compensated oxidative stress in the mouse liver upon deletion of catechol O-methyltransferase.

    PubMed

    Tenorio-Laranga, Jofre; Männistö, Pekka T; Karayiorgou, Maria; Gogos, Joseph A; García-Horsman, J Arturo

    2009-05-01

    Catechol-O-methyl transferase (COMT) methylates catechols, such as L-dopa and dopamine, and COMT deficient mice show dramatic shifts in the metabolite levels of catechols. Increase in catechol metabolite levels can, in principle, lead to oxidative stress but no indices of oxidative stress have been reported in COMT-knockout (KO) mice [Forsberg MM, Juvonen RO, Helisalmi P, Leppanen J, Gogos JA, Karayiorgou M, et al. Lack of increased oxidative stress in catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT)-deficient mice. Naunyn Schmiedebergs Arch Pharmacol 2004;370:279-89.]. Here we perform a proteomic based analysis of the livers of COMT-KO mice in search for potential compensatory mechanisms developed to cope with the effects of disrupted catechol metabolism. We found sex specific changes in proteins connected to stress response. Our results show that alterations in protein levels contribute to the homeostatic regulation in the liver of COMT deficient mice. PMID:19426692

  12. Cloning and functional characterization of the Arabidopsis N-acetylserotonin O-methyltransferase responsible for melatonin synthesis.

    PubMed

    Byeon, Yeong; Lee, Hye-Jung; Lee, Hyoung Yool; Back, Kyoungwhan

    2016-01-01

    The N-acetylserotonin O-methyltransferase (ASMT) gene encodes the enzyme that catalyzes the conversion of N-acetylserotonin to melatonin as the last step in melatonin biosynthesis. The first plant ASMT gene to be cloned was from rice. An orthologous gene encoding a protein with ASMT activity and only 39.7% amino acid sequence identity to the rice ASMT protein was recently isolated from apple (Malus zumi). The low homology of the apple ASMT sequence prompted us to screen the Arabidopsis genome for a homologous ASMT gene. The At4g35160 gene exhibited the highest sequence identity (31%) to the rice ASMT gene, followed by the At1g76790 gene with 29% sequence identity. We purified recombinant proteins expressed from the two Arabidopsis genes. The At4g35160 recombinant protein exhibited ASMT enzyme activity, but the At1g76790 recombinant protein did not; thus, we designated At4g35160 as an Arabidopsis thaliana ASMT (AtASMT) gene. The AtASMT protein catalyzed the conversion of N-acetylserotonin to melatonin and serotonin to 5-methoxytryptamine with Vmax values of 0.11 and 0.29 pkat/mg protein, respectively. However, AtASMT exhibited no caffeic acid O-methyltransferase activity, suggesting that its function was highly specific to melatonin synthesis. AtASMT transcripts were induced by cadmium treatment in Arabidopsis followed by increased melatonin synthesis. Similar to other ASMT proteins, AtASMT was localized in the cytoplasm and its ectopic overexpression in rice resulted in increased ASMT enzyme activity and melatonin production, indicating the involvement of AtASMT in melatonin synthesis. PMID:26484897

  13. Molecular docking studies for the identification of novel melatoninergic inhibitors for acetylserotonin-O-methyltransferase using different docking routines

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background N-Acetylserotonin O-methyltransferase (ASMT) is an enzyme which by converting nor-melatonin to melatonin catalyzes the final reaction in melatonin biosynthesis in tryptophan metabolism pathway. High Expression of ASMT gene is evident in PPTs. The presence of abnormally high levels of ASMT in pineal gland could serve as an indication of the existence of pineal parenchymal tumors (PPTs) in the brain (J Neuropathol Exp Neurol 65: 675–684, 2006). Different levels of melatonin are used as a trait marker for prescribing the mood disorders e.g. Seasonal affective disorder, bipolar disorder, or major depressive disorder. In addition, melatonin levels can also be used to calculate the severity of a patient’s illness at a given point in time. Methods Seventy three melatoninergic inhibitors were docked with acetylserotonin-O-methyltransferase in order to identify the potent inhibitor against the enzyme. The chemical nature of the protein and ligands greatly influence the performance of docking routines. Keeping this fact in view, critical evaluation of the performance of four different commonly used docking routines: AutoDock/Vina, GOLD, FlexX and FRED were performed. An evaluation criterion was based on the binding affinities/docking scores and experimental bioactivities. Results and conclusion Results indicated that both hydrogen bonding and hydrophobic interactions contributed significantly for its ligand binding and the compound selected as potent inhibitor is having minimum binding affinity, maximum GoldScore and minimum FlexX energy. The correlation value of r2 = 0. 66 may be useful in the selection of correct docked complexes based on the energy without having prior knowledge of the active site. This may lead to further understanding of structures, their reliability and Biomolecular activity especially in connection with bipolar disorders. PMID:24156411

  14. Phosphorylation is an on/off switch for 5-hydroxyconiferaldehyde O-methyltransferase activity in poplar monolignol biosynthesis

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Jack P.; Chuang, Ling; Loziuk, Philip L.; Chen, Hao; Lin, Ying-Chung; Shi, Rui; Qu, Guan-Zheng; Muddiman, David C.; Sederoff, Ronald R.; Chiang, Vincent L.

    2015-01-01

    Although phosphorylation has long been known to be an important regulatory modification of proteins, no unequivocal evidence has been presented to show functional control by phosphorylation for the plant monolignol biosynthetic pathway. Here, we present the discovery of phosphorylation-mediated on/off regulation of enzyme activity for 5-hydroxyconiferaldehyde O-methyltransferase 2 (PtrAldOMT2), an enzyme central to monolignol biosynthesis for lignification in stem-differentiating xylem (SDX) of Populus trichocarpa. Phosphorylation turned off the PtrAldOMT2 activity, as demonstrated in vitro by using purified phosphorylated and unphosphorylated recombinant PtrAldOMT2. Protein extracts of P. trichocarpa SDX, which contains endogenous kinases, also phosphorylated recombinant PtrAldOMT2 and turned off the recombinant protein activity. Similarly, ATP/Mn2+-activated phosphorylation of SDX protein extracts reduced the endogenous SDX PtrAldOMT2 activity by ∼60%, and dephosphorylation fully restored the activity. Global shotgun proteomic analysis of phosphopeptide-enriched P. trichocarpa SDX protein fractions identified PtrAldOMT2 monophosphorylation at Ser123 or Ser125 in vivo. Phosphorylation-site mutagenesis verified the PtrAldOMT2 phosphorylation at Ser123 or Ser125 and confirmed the functional importance of these phosphorylation sites for O-methyltransferase activity. The PtrAldOMT2 Ser123 phosphorylation site is conserved across 93% of AldOMTs from 46 diverse plant species, and 98% of the AldOMTs have either Ser123 or Ser125. PtrAldOMT2 is a homodimeric cytosolic enzyme expressed more abundantly in syringyl lignin-rich fiber cells than in guaiacyl lignin-rich vessel cells. The reversible phosphorylation of PtrAldOMT2 is likely to have an important role in regulating syringyl monolignol biosynthesis of P. trichocarpa. PMID:26109572

  15. Loop dynamics of thymidine diphosphate-rhamnose 3′-O-methyltransferase (CalS11), an enzyme in calicheamicin biosynthesis

    PubMed Central

    Han, Lu; Singh, Shanteri; Thorson, Jon S.; Phillips, George N.

    2016-01-01

    Structure analysis and ensemble refinement of the apo-structure of thymidine diphosphate (TDP)-rhamnose 3′-O-methyltransferase reveal a gate for substrate entry and product release. TDP-rhamnose 3′-O-methyltransferase (CalS11) catalyses a 3′-O-methylation of TDP-rhamnose, an intermediate in the biosynthesis of enediyne antitumor antibiotic calicheamicin. CalS11 operates at the sugar nucleotide stage prior to glycosylation step. Here, we present the crystal structure of the apo form of CalS11 at 1.89 Å resolution. We propose that the L2 loop functions as a gate facilitating and/or providing specificity for substrate entry or promoting product release. Ensemble refinement analysis slightly improves the crystallographic refinement statistics and furthermore provides a compelling way to visualize the dynamic model of loop L2, supporting the understanding of its proposed role in catalysis. PMID:26958582

  16. Rational Design of a Live Attenuated Dengue Vaccine: 2′-O-Methyltransferase Mutants Are Highly Attenuated and Immunogenic in Mice and Macaques

    PubMed Central

    Chang, David C.; Zhang, Bo; Balakrishnan, Thavamalar; Toh, Ying-Xiu; Jiang, Tao; Li, Shi-Hua; Deng, Yong-Qiang; Ellis, Brett R.; Ellis, Esther M.; Poidinger, Michael; Zolezzi, Francesca; Qin, Cheng-Feng; Shi, Pei-Yong; Fink, Katja

    2013-01-01

    Dengue virus is transmitted by Aedes mosquitoes and infects at least 100 million people every year. Progressive urbanization in Asia and South-Central America and the geographic expansion of Aedes mosquito habitats have accelerated the global spread of dengue, resulting in a continuously increasing number of cases. A cost-effective, safe vaccine conferring protection with ideally a single injection could stop dengue transmission. Current vaccine candidates require several booster injections or do not provide protection against all four serotypes. Here we demonstrate that dengue virus mutants lacking 2′-O-methyltransferase activity are highly sensitive to type I IFN inhibition. The mutant viruses are attenuated in mice and rhesus monkeys and elicit a strong adaptive immune response. Monkeys immunized with a single dose of 2′-O-methyltransferase mutant virus showed 100% sero-conversion even when a dose as low as 1,000 plaque forming units was administrated. Animals were fully protected against a homologous challenge. Furthermore, mosquitoes feeding on blood containing the mutant virus were not infected, whereas those feeding on blood containing wild-type virus were infected and thus able to transmit it. These results show the potential of 2′-O-methyltransferase mutant virus as a safe, rationally designed dengue vaccine that restrains itself due to the increased susceptibility to the host's innate immune response. PMID:23935499

  17. Cloning and characterization of a novel O-methyltransferase from Flammulina velutipes that catalyzes methylation of pyrocatechol and pyrogallol structures in polyphenols.

    PubMed

    Kirita, Masanobu; Tanaka, Yoshihisa; Tagashira, Motoyuki; Kanda, Tomomasa; Maeda-Yamamoto, Mari

    2015-01-01

    A novel O-methyltransferase gene was isolated from Flammulina velutipes. The isolated full-length cDNA was composed of a 690-nucleotide open reading frame encoding 230 amino acids. A database search revealed that the deduced amino acid sequence was similar to those of other O-methyltransferases; the highest identity was only 61.8% with Laccaria bicolor. The recombinant enzyme was expressed by Escherichia coli. BL21 (DE3) was assessed for its ability to methylate (-)-epigallocatechin-3-O-gallate (EGCG). LC-TOF-MS and NMR revealed that the enzyme produced five kinds of O-methylated EGCGs: (-)-epigallocatechin-3-O-(3-O-methyl)gallate, (-)-epigallocatechin-3-O-(4-O-methyl)gallate, (-)-epigallocatechin-3-O-(3,4-O-dimethyl)gallate, (-)-epigallocatechin-3-O-(3,5-O-dimethyl)gallate, and (-)-4'-O-methylepigallocatechin-3-O-(3,5-O-dimethyl)gallate. The substrate specificity of the enzyme for 20 kinds of polyphenols was assessed using the crude recombinant enzyme of O-methyltransferase. This enzyme introduced methyl group(s) into polyphenols with pyrocatechol and pyrogallol structures. PMID:25754602

  18. The brown midrib3 (bm3) mutation in maize occurs in the gene encoding caffeic acid O-methyltransferase.

    PubMed Central

    Vignols, F; Rigau, J; Torres, M A; Capellades, M; Puigdomènech, P

    1995-01-01

    The brown midrib mutations are among the earliest described in maize. Plants containing a brown midrib mutation exhibit a reddish brown pigmentation of the leaf midrib starting when there are four to six leaves. These mutations are known to alter lignin composition and digestibility of plants and therefore constitute prime candidates in the breeding of silage maize. Here, we show that two independent brown midrib3 (bm3) mutations have resulted from structural changes in the COMT gene, which encodes the enzyme O-methyltransferase (COMT; EC 2.1.1.6), involved in lignin biosynthesis. Our results indicate that the bm3-1 allele (the reference mutant allele) has arisen from an insertional event producing a COMT mRNA altered in both size and amount. By sequencing a COMT cDNA clone obtained from bm3-1 maize, a retrotransposon with homology to the B5 element has been found to be inserted near the junction of the 3' coding region of the COMT gene intron. The second bm3 allele, bm3-2, has resulted from a deletion of part of the COMT gene. These alterations of the COMT gene were confirmed by DNA gel blot and polymerase chain reaction amplification analyses. These results clearly demonstrate that mutations at the COMT gene give a brown midrib3 phenotype. Thus, the gene genetically recognized as bm3 is the same as the one coding for COMT. PMID:7773015

  19. Functional characterization of a Mg(2+)-dependent O-methyltransferase with coumarin as preferred substrate from the liverwort Plagiochasma appendiculatum.

    PubMed

    Xu, Rui-Xue; Gao, Shuai; Zhao, Yu; Lou, Hong-Xiang; Cheng, Ai-Xia

    2016-09-01

    Coumarins (1,2-benzopyrones), which originate via the phenylpropanoid pathway, are found ubiquitously in plants and make an essential contribution to the health of the plant. Some natural coumarins have been used as human therapeutics. However, the details of their biosynthesis are still largely unknown. Scopoletin is derived from either esculetin or feruloyl CoA according to the plant species involved. Here, a gene encoding a O-methyltransferase (PaOMT2) was isolated from the liverwort species Plagiochasma appendiculatum (Aytoniaceae) through transcriptome sequencing. The purified recombinant enzyme catalyzed the methylation of esculetin, generating scopoletin and isoscopoletin. Kinetic analysis shows that the construct from the second Met in PaOMT2 had a catalytic efficiency for esculetin (Kcat/Km) of about half that of the full length PaOMT2, while the Kms of two enzymes were similar. The catalytic capacities of the studied protein suggest that two routes to scopoletin might co-exist in liverworts in that the enzyme involved in the methylation process participates in both paths, but especially the route from esculetin. The transient expression of a PaOMT2-GFP fusion in tobacco demonstrated that PaOMT2 is directed to the cytoplasm. PMID:27213954

  20. Sequencing around 5-Hydroxyconiferyl Alcohol-Derived Units in Caffeic Acid O-Methyltransferase-Deficient Poplar Lignins1[OA

    PubMed Central

    Lu, Fachuang; Marita, Jane M.; Lapierre, Catherine; Jouanin, Lise; Morreel, Kris; Boerjan, Wout; Ralph, John

    2010-01-01

    Caffeic acid O-methyltransferase (COMT) is a bifunctional enzyme that methylates the 5- and 3-hydroxyl positions on the aromatic ring of monolignol precursors, with a preference for 5-hydroxyconiferaldehyde, on the way to producing sinapyl alcohol. Lignins in COMT-deficient plants contain benzodioxane substructures due to the incorporation of 5-hydroxyconiferyl alcohol (5-OH-CA), as a monomer, into the lignin polymer. The derivatization followed by reductive cleavage method can be used to detect and determine benzodioxane structures because of their total survival under this degradation method. Moreover, partial sequencing information for 5-OH-CA incorporation into lignin can be derived from detection or isolation and structural analysis of the resulting benzodioxane products. Results from a modified derivatization followed by reductive cleavage analysis of COMT-deficient lignins provide evidence that 5-OH-CA cross couples (at its β-position) with syringyl and guaiacyl units (at their O-4-positions) in the growing lignin polymer and then either coniferyl or sinapyl alcohol, or another 5-hydroxyconiferyl monomer, adds to the resulting 5-hydroxyguaiacyl terminus, producing the benzodioxane. This new terminus may also become etherified by coupling with further monolignols, incorporating the 5-OH-CA integrally into the lignin structure. PMID:20427467

  1. Linking electrostatic effects and protein motions in enzymatic catalysis. A theoretical analysis of catechol o-methyltransferase.

    PubMed

    García-Meseguer, Rafael; Zinovjev, Kirill; Roca, Maite; Ruiz-Pernía, Javier J; Tuñón, Iñaki

    2015-01-22

    The role of protein motions in enzymatic catalysis is the subject of a hot scientific debate. We here propose the use of an explicit solvent coordinate to analyze the impact of environmental motions during the reaction process. The example analyzed here is the reaction catalyzed by catechol O-methyltransferase, a methyl transfer reaction from S-adenosylmethionine (SAM) to the nucleophilic oxygen atom of catecholate. This reaction proceeds from a charged reactant to a neutral product, and then a large electrostatic coupling with the environment could be expected. By means of a two-dimensional free energy surface, we show that a large fraction of the environmental motions needed to attain the transition state happens during the first stages of the reaction because most of the environmental motions are slower than changes in the substrate. The incorporation of the solvent coordinate in the definition of the transition state improves the transmission coefficient and the committor histogram in solution, while the changes are much less significant in the enzyme. The equilibrium solvation approach seems then to work better in the enzyme than in aqueous solution because the enzyme provides a preorganized environment where the reaction takes place. PMID:25159911

  2. Catechol-O-methyltransferase Inhibition Increases Pain Sensitivity through Activation of Both β2 and β3 Adrenergic Receptors

    PubMed Central

    Nackley-Neely, Andrea Gail; Tan, Kai Soo; Fecho, Karamarie; Flood, Patrick; Diatchenko, Luda; Maixner, William

    2007-01-01

    Catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT), an enzyme that metabolizes catecholamines, has recently been implicated in the modulation of pain. Our group demonstrated that human genetic variants of COMT are predictive for the development of Temporomandibular Joint Disorder (TMJD) and are associated with heightened experimental pain sensitivity (Diatchenko et al. 2005). Variants associated with heightened pain sensitivity produce lower COMT activity. Here we report the mechanisms underlying COMT-dependent pain sensitivity. To characterize the means whereby elevated catecholamine levels, resulting from reduced COMT activity, modulate heightened pain sensitivity, we administered a COMT inhibitor to rats and measured behavioral responsiveness to mechanical and thermal stimuli. We show that depressed COMT activity results in enhanced mechanical and thermal pain sensitivity. This phenomenon is completely blocked by the nonselective β-adrenergic antagonist propranolol or by the combined administration of selective β2- and β3-adrenergic antagonists, while administration of β1-adrenergic, α-adrenergic, or dopaminergic receptor antagonists fail to alter COMT-dependent pain sensitivity. These data provide the first direct evidence that low COMT activity leads to increased pain sensitivity via a β2/3-adrenergic mechanism. These findings are of considerable clinical importance, suggesting that pain conditions resulting from low COMT activity and/or elevated catecholamine levels can be treated with pharmacological agents that block both β2- and β3-adrenergic receptors. PMID:17084978

  3. Up- and down-regulation of Fragaria x ananassa O-methyltransferase: impacts on furanone and phenylpropanoid metabolism.

    PubMed

    Lunkenbein, Stefan; Salentijn, Elma M J; Coiner, Heather A; Boone, Marjan J; Krens, Frans A; Schwab, Wilfried

    2006-01-01

    A complex mixture of hundreds of substances determines strawberry (Fragaria x ananassa) aroma, but only approximately 15 volatiles are considered as key flavour compounds. Of these, 4-hydroxy-2,5-dimethyl-3(2H)-furanone (HDMF) is regarded as the most important, but it is methylated further by FaOMT (Fragaria x ananassa O-methyltransferase) to 2,5-dimethyl-4-methoxy-3(2H)-furanone (DMMF) during the ripening process. It is shown here that transformation of strawberry with the FaOMT sequence in sense and antisense orientation, under the control of the cauliflower mosaic virus 35S promoter, resulted in a near total loss of DMMF, whereas the levels of the other volatiles remained unchanged. FaOMT repression also affected the ratio of feruloyl 1-O-beta-D-glucose and caffeoyl 1-O-beta-D-glucose, indicating a dual function of the enzyme in planta. Thus, FaOMT is involved in at least two different biochemical pathways in ripe strawberry fruit. PMID:16798852

  4. Sequencing around 5-hydroxyconiferyl alcohol-derived units in caffeic acid O-methyltransferase-deficient poplar lignins.

    PubMed

    Lu, Fachuang; Marita, Jane M; Lapierre, Catherine; Jouanin, Lise; Morreel, Kris; Boerjan, Wout; Ralph, John

    2010-06-01

    Caffeic acid O-methyltransferase (COMT) is a bifunctional enzyme that methylates the 5- and 3-hydroxyl positions on the aromatic ring of monolignol precursors, with a preference for 5-hydroxyconiferaldehyde, on the way to producing sinapyl alcohol. Lignins in COMT-deficient plants contain benzodioxane substructures due to the incorporation of 5-hydroxyconiferyl alcohol (5-OH-CA), as a monomer, into the lignin polymer. The derivatization followed by reductive cleavage method can be used to detect and determine benzodioxane structures because of their total survival under this degradation method. Moreover, partial sequencing information for 5-OH-CA incorporation into lignin can be derived from detection or isolation and structural analysis of the resulting benzodioxane products. Results from a modified derivatization followed by reductive cleavage analysis of COMT-deficient lignins provide evidence that 5-OH-CA cross couples (at its beta-position) with syringyl and guaiacyl units (at their O-4-positions) in the growing lignin polymer and then either coniferyl or sinapyl alcohol, or another 5-hydroxyconiferyl monomer, adds to the resulting 5-hydroxyguaiacyl terminus, producing the benzodioxane. This new terminus may also become etherified by coupling with further monolignols, incorporating the 5-OH-CA integrally into the lignin structure. PMID:20427467

  5. Perceived stress during pregnancy and the catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) rs165599 polymorphism impacts on childhood IQ.

    PubMed

    Lamb, Yvette N; Thompson, John M D; Murphy, Rinki; Wall, Clare; Kirk, Ian J; Morgan, Angharad R; Ferguson, Lynnette R; Mitchell, Edwin A; Waldie, Karen E

    2014-09-01

    Maternal stress during pregnancy has been associated with a range of adverse outcomes in offspring and the catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) gene has been linked to differential susceptibility to the consequences of antenatal stress. This study examined two functional polymorphisms of the COMT gene (rs4680 and rs165599) in relation to maternal perceived stress and childhood cognitive performance. Data from the longitudinal Auckland Birthweight Collaborative (ABC) study was used. Maternal perceived stress over the prior month was measured at birth, 3.5 and 7years. Full-Scale IQ (FSIQ) was measured at ages 7 and 11. At age 11, a total of 546 DNA samples were collected from the child participants. Data were subjected to a series of split-plot ANCOVAs with birthweight for gestational age and maternal school leaving age as covariates. There were direct effects of maternal stress during the last month of pregnancy on offspring FSIQ at ages 7 and 11years. A significant interaction revealed that children exposed to high maternal antenatal stress had significantly lower FSIQ scores at both 7 and 11years of age than those exposed to low stress, only when they were carriers of the rs165599 G allele. At each age, this difference was of approximately 5 IQ points. The G allele of the rs165599 polymorphism may confer genetic susceptibility to negative cognitive outcomes arising from exposure to antenatal stress. This finding highlights the need to consider gene-environment interactions when investigating the outcomes of antenatal stress exposure. PMID:24955500

  6. Erythrocyte catechol-O-methyltransferase activity: genetic analysis in nuclear families with one child affected by Down syndrome.

    PubMed

    Brahe, C; Serra, A; Morton, N E

    1985-06-01

    Erythrocyte catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) activity was measured in 142 members of 32 nuclear families in which one child had Down syndrome (DS). The mean activity in subjects with trisomy 21 appears higher than in parents and sibs, though not significantly so. However, this fact does not seem to modify the properties expected for a trait genetically controlled in a diploid population. The commingling analysis of the COMT activity in the whole group, and in each subgroup of relatives, suggests a mixture of two or, more likely, three components, the latter being in agreement with a transmission model of genes without dominance. The most parsimonious hypothesis supported by the mixed model segregation analysis is that of an additive major locus (d = 0.5) with an estimated frequency of 0.40 +/- 0.03 for the COMTH gene, to which a small polygenic effect (H = 0.067) can be added. This hypothesis is supported further by the analysis of family resemblance, r = 0.45 +/- 0.12 being the maximum likelihood estimator of the intraclass correlation among sibs. The higher COMT activity in DS subjects may reflect a situation of general enzyme disorder only indirectly connected with trisomy of chromosome 21. PMID:3160238

  7. Multiple-Copy Cluster-Type Organization and Evolution of Genes Encoding O-Methyltransferases in the Apple

    PubMed Central

    Han, Yuepeng; Gasic, Ksenija; Korban, Schuyler S.

    2007-01-01

    Plant O-methyltransferases (OMTs) play important roles in secondary metabolism. Two clusters of genes coding for caffeic acid OMT (COMT) have been identified in the apple genome. Three genes from one cluster and two genes from another cluster were isolated. These five genes encoding COMT, designated Mdomt1–Mdomt5 (GenBank accession nos. DQ886018–DQ886022), were distinguished by a (CT)n microsatellite in the 5′-UTR and two transposon-like sequences present in the promoter region and intron 1, respectively. The transposon-like sequence in intron 1 unambiguously traced the five Mdomt genes in the apple to a common ancestor. The ancestor must have undergone an initial duplication generating two progenitors, and this was followed by further duplication of these progenitors resulting in the two clusters identified in this study. The distal regions of the transposon-like sequences in promoter regions of Mdomt genes are capable of forming palindromic hairpin-like structures. The hairpin formation is likely responsible for nucleotide sequence differences observed in the promoter regions of these genes as it plays a destabilizing role in eukaryotic chromosomes. In addition, the possible mechanism of amplification of Mdomt genes in the apple genome is also discussed. PMID:17717198

  8. Catechol-O-methyltransferase Val158Met genotype moderates the effect of disorganized attachment on social development in young children.

    PubMed

    Hygen, Beate Wold; Guzey, Ismail Cuneyt; Belsky, Jay; Berg-Nielsen, Turid Suzanne; Wichstrøm, Lars

    2014-11-01

    Children with histories of disorganized attachment exhibit diverse problems, possibly because disorganization takes at least two distinctive forms as children age: controlling-punitive and controlling-caregiving. This variation in the developmental legacy of disorganization has been attributed primarily to variations in children's rearing experiences. Here an alternative explanation of these divergent sequelae of disorganization is evaluated: one focused on genotype. Structural equation modeling was applied to data on 704 Norwegian children to test whether the catechol-O-methyltransferase Val158Met genotype moderates the effect of disorganized attachment, which was measured dimensionally at 4 years of age using the Manchester Child Attachment Story Task, on changes in aggressive behavior and social competence from ages 4 to 6. Children who scored high on disorganization and were homozygous for the valine allele displayed significantly greater increases in aggression and decreases in self-oriented social skills (e.g., self-regulation and assertiveness) over time than did their disorganized counterparts carrying the methionine allele, whereas disorganized children carrying the methionine allele increased their other-oriented social skill (e.g., cooperation and responsibility) scores more than did valine-homozygous children. These results are consistent with the controlling-punitive and controlling-caregiving behaviors observed in disorganized children, suggesting that the children's genotype contributed to variations in the social development of disorganized children. PMID:24914507

  9. Engineering a monolignol 4-O-methyltransferase with high selectivity for the condensed lignin precursor coniferyl alchohol

    DOE PAGESBeta

    Cai, Yuanheng; Shanklin, John; Mohammad -Wadud Bhuiya; Liu, Chang -Jun

    2015-09-16

    Lignin, a rigid biopolymer in plant cell walls, is derived from the oxidative polymerization of three monolignols. The composition of monolignol monomers dictates the degree of lignin condensation, reactivity, and thus the degradability of plant cell walls. Guaiacyl lignin is regarded as the condensed structural unit. Polymerization of lignin is initiated through the deprotonation of the para-hydroxyl group of monolignols. Therefore, preferentially modifying the para-hydroxyl of a specific monolignol to deprive its dehydrogenation propensity would disturb the formation of particular lignin subunits. Here, we test the hypothesis that specific remodeling the active site of a monolignol 4-O-methyltransferase would create anmore » enzyme that specifically methylates the condensed guaiacyl lignin precursor coniferyl alcohol. Combining crystal structural information with combinatorial active site saturation mutagenesis and starting with the engineered promiscuous enzyme, MOMT5 (T133L/E165I/F175I/F166W/H169F), we incrementally remodeled its substrate binding pocket by the addition of four substitutions, i.e. M26H, S30R, V33S, and T319M, yielding a mutant enzyme capable of discriminately etherifying the para-hydroxyl of coniferyl alcohol even in the presence of excess sinapyl alcohol. The engineered enzyme variant has a substantially reduced substrate binding pocket that imposes a clear steric hindrance thereby excluding bulkier lignin precursors. Lastly, the resulting enzyme variant represents an excellent candidate for modulating lignin composition and/or structure in planta.« less

  10. Effect of peripheral catechol-O-methyltransferase inhibition on the pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics of levodopa in parkinsonian patients.

    PubMed

    Nutt, J G; Woodward, W R; Beckner, R M; Stone, C K; Berggren, K; Carter, J H; Gancher, S T; Hammerstad, J P; Gordin, A

    1994-05-01

    Catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) metabolizes a portion of administered levodopa and thus makes it unavailable for conversion to dopamine in the brain. In an open-label trail, we examined the effects of entacapone, a peripheral inhibitor of COMT, administered acutely or for 8 weeks, on the pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics of levodopa in 15 parkinsonian subjects with a fluctuating response to levodopa. Acutely and chronically administered entacapone similarly decreased the plasma elimination of orally and intravenously administered levodopa. Absorption of levodopa was minimally affected. During chronic entacapone treatment, daily levodopa dosages were reduced by 27% yet mean plasma levodopa concentrations were increased by 23%. Plasma 3-O-methyldopa concentrations were decreased by 60%. Entacapone increased the duration of action of single doses of levodopa by a mean of 56%. The percent of the day "on" after 8 weeks of entacapone treatment was 77%; it dropped to 44% upon withdrawal of entacapone. We conclude that inhibition of COMT by entacapone increases the plasma half-life of levodopa and augments the antiparkinsonian effects of single and repeated doses of levodopa. PMID:8190296

  11. Down-regulation of the Caffeic acid O-methyltransferase Gene in Switchgrass Reveals a Novel Monolignol Analog

    SciTech Connect

    Tschaplinski, Timothy J; Standaert, Robert F; Engle, Nancy L; Martin, Madhavi Z; Sangha, Amandeep K; Parks, Jerry M; Smith, Jeremy C; Samuel, Reichel; Pu, Yunqiao; Ragauskas, A J; Hamilton, Choo Yieng; Fu, Chunxiang; Wang, Zeng-Yu; Davison, Brian H; Dixon, Richard A; Mielenz, Jonathan R

    2012-01-01

    Down-regulation of the caffeic acid 3-O-methyltransferase (COMT) gene in the lignin biosynthetic pathway of switchgrass (Panicum virgatum) resulted in cell walls of transgenic plants releasing more constituent sugars after pretreatment by dilute acid and treatment with glycosyl hydrolases from an added enzyme preparation and from Clostridium thermocellum. Fermentation of both wild-type and transgenic switchgrass after milder hot water pretreatment with no water washing showed that only the transgenic switchgrass inhibited C. thermocellum. Gas chromatography-mass spectrometry-based metabolomics were undertaken on cell wall aqueous extracts to determine the nature of the microbial inhibitors, confirming the increased concentration of a number of phenolic acids and aldehydes that are known inhibitors of fermentation. Metabolomic analyses of the transgenic biomass additionally revealed the presence of a novel monolignol-like metabolite, identified as trans-3, 4-dimethoxy-5-hydroxycinnamyl alcohol (iso-sinapyl alcohol) in both non-pretreated, as well as hot water pretreated samples. Although there was no indication that iso-sinapyl alcohol was integrated into the cell wall, diversion of substrates from sinapyl alcohol to free iso-sinapyl alcohol, its glucoside, and associated upstream lignin pathway changes, including increased phenolic aldehydes and acids, are associated with more facile cell wall deconstruction, and to the observed inhibitory effect on microbial growth.

  12. Engineering a monolignol 4-O-methyltransferase with high selectivity for the condensed lignin precursor coniferyl alcohol.

    PubMed

    Cai, Yuanheng; Bhuiya, Mohammad-Wadud; Shanklin, John; Liu, Chang-Jun

    2015-10-30

    Lignin, a rigid biopolymer in plant cell walls, is derived from the oxidative polymerization of three monolignols. The composition of monolignol monomers dictates the degree of lignin condensation, reactivity, and thus the degradability of plant cell walls. Guaiacyl lignin is regarded as the condensed structural unit. Polymerization of lignin is initiated through the deprotonation of the para-hydroxyl group of monolignols. Therefore, preferentially modifying the para-hydroxyl of a specific monolignol to deprive its dehydrogenation propensity would disturb the formation of particular lignin subunits. Here, we test the hypothesis that specific remodeling the active site of a monolignol 4-O-methyltransferase would create an enzyme that specifically methylates the condensed guaiacyl lignin precursor coniferyl alcohol. Combining crystal structural information with combinatorial active site saturation mutagenesis and starting with the engineered promiscuous enzyme, MOMT5 (T133L/E165I/F175I/F166W/H169F), we incrementally remodeled its substrate binding pocket by the addition of four substitutions, i.e. M26H, S30R, V33S, and T319M, yielding a mutant enzyme capable of discriminately etherifying the para-hydroxyl of coniferyl alcohol even in the presence of excess sinapyl alcohol. The engineered enzyme variant has a substantially reduced substrate binding pocket that imposes a clear steric hindrance thereby excluding bulkier lignin precursors. The resulting enzyme variant represents an excellent candidate for modulating lignin composition and/or structure in planta. PMID:26378240

  13. The impact of Val108/158Met polymorphism of catechol-O-methyltransferase on brain oscillations during working memory.

    PubMed

    Altamura, Mario; Elvevåg, Brita; Goldberg, Terry E; Carver, Frederick W; Weinberger, Daniel R; Coppola, Richard

    2016-01-01

    This study investigated whether catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) Val/Met polymorphism was associated with variation in event-related desynchronization/synchronization (ERD/ERS) of responses during working memory (WM). 11 Val/Val and 11 Met/Met homozygous participants underwent magnetoencephalography (MEG) while performing a WM task. In contrast to small effects behaviourally, during the delay period Val/Val individuals showed lower ERS in the gamma band (Hz 30-50) in frontal regions, increased ERS in the alpha band (Hz 8-12) in the right frontal and parietal regions and increased ERD in the beta band (Hz 14-30) in the left fronto-temporal regions as compared with Met/Met homozygous individuals. During the response period Val/Val participants showed greater beta ERD in the prefrontal and parietotemporal regions. These results demonstrate that COMT genotype has a strong impact on brain responses (oscillatory activity) during WM performance likely a consequence of compensatory activity during the delay and response periods. PMID:26536074

  14. Catechol-O-methyltransferase Val158met polymorphism interacts with early experience to predict executive functions in early childhood.

    PubMed

    Blair, Clancy; Sulik, Michael; Willoughby, Michael; Mills-Koonce, Roger; Petrill, Stephen; Bartlett, Christopher; Greenberg, Mark

    2015-11-01

    Numerous studies demonstrate that the Methionine variant of the catechol-O-methyltransferase Val158Met polymorphism, which confers less efficient catabolism of catecholamines, is associated with increased focal activation of prefrontal cortex (PFC) and higher levels of executive function abilities. By and large, however, studies of COMT Val158Met have been conducted with adult samples and do not account for the context in which development is occurring. Effects of early adversity on stress response physiology and the inverted U shape relating catecholamine levels to neural activity in PFC indicate the need to take into account early experience when considering relations between genes such as COMT and executive cognitive ability. Consistent with this neurobiology, we find in a prospective longitudinal sample of children and families (N = 1292) that COMT Val158Met interacts with early experience to predict executive function abilities in early childhood. Specifically, the Valine variant of the COMT Val158Met polymorphism, which confers more rather than less efficient catabolism of catecholamines is associated with higher executive function abilities at child ages 48 and 60 months and with faster growth of executive function for children experiencing early adversity, as indexed by cumulative risk factors in the home at child ages 7, 15, 24, and 36 months. Findings indicate the importance of the early environment for the relation between catecholamine genes and developmental outcomes and demonstrate that the genetic moderation of environmental risk is detectable in early childhood. PMID:26251232

  15. Implicit versus explicit solvent in free energy calculations of enzyme catalysis: Methyl transfer catalyzed by catechol O-methyltransferase

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rod, Thomas H.; Rydberg, Patrik; Ryde, Ulf

    2006-05-01

    We compare free energy calculations for the methyl transfer reaction catalyzed by catechol O-methyltransferase using the quantum mechanical/molecular mechanical free energy method with implicit and explicit solvents. An analogous methylation reaction in a solution is also studied. For the explicit solvent model, we use the three-point transferable intermolecular potential model, and for the implicit model, we use the generalized Born molecular volume model as implemented in CHARMM. We find that activation and reaction free energies calculated with the two models are very similar, despite some structural differences that exist. A significant change in the polarization of the environment occurs as the reaction proceeds. This is more pronounced for the reaction in a solution than for the enzymatic reaction. For the enzymatic reaction, most of the changes take place in the protein rather than in the solvent, and, hence, the benefit of having an instantaneous relaxation of the solvent degrees of freedom is less pronounced for the enzymatic reaction than for the reaction in a solution. This is a likely reason why energies of the enzyme reaction are less sensitive to the choice of atomic radii than are energies of the reaction in a solution.

  16. Immunocytochemical localization of hydroxyindole-o-methyltransferase (HIOMT) in the brain of Myoisophagos lacteus (Nemertea: Heteronemertea: Lineidae).

    PubMed

    Arnoult, F; Vernet, G

    2001-07-01

    In an attempt to identify the brain structures that synthesize melatonin and that probably mediate the photoperiodic response of the heteronemertean Myoisophagos lacteus, we utilized immunocytochemical techniques and employed immunoglobulins directed against hydroxyindole-O-methyltransferase (HIOMT, EC 2.1.1.4). This enzyme catalyzes the last step of melatonin biosynthesis. In immunocytochemically treated head sections of Myoisophagos lacteus, antibodies labelled a few cells in the dorsal region of the dorsal cerebral ganglia. Previous studies have shown that melatonin is present both in the brain and eyes of this nemertean species and that melatonin is involved in control of the worm reproduction. Other studies have demonstrated the presence of photoreceptor-like cells in the same region of the worm brain that showed HIOMT immunostaining. Therefore, anatomical findings of the present study, coupled with results of previous works, provide strong evidence that this region of the worm brain houses a photoperiodic receptor involved in melatonin biosynthesis. J. Exp. Zool. 290:156-162, 2001. PMID:11471145

  17. Identification of white campion (Silene latifolia) guaiacol O-methyltransferase involved in the biosynthesis of veratrole, a key volatile for pollinator attraction

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Silene latifolia and its pollinator, the noctuid moth Hadena bicruris, represent an open nursery pollination system wherein floral volatiles, especially veratrole (1, 2-dimethoxybenzene), lilac aldehydes, and phenylacetaldehyde are of key importance for floral signaling. Despite the important role of floral scent in ensuring reproductive success in S. latifolia, the molecular basis of scent biosynthesis in this species has not yet been investigated. Results We isolated two full-length cDNAs from S. latifolia that show similarity to rose orcinol O-methyltransferase. Biochemical analysis showed that both S. latifolia guaiacol O-methyltransferase1 (SlGOMT1) &S. latifolia guaiacol O-methyltransferase2 (SlGOMT2) encode proteins that catalyze the methylation of guaiacol to form veratrole. A large Km value difference between SlGOMT1 (~10 μM) and SlGOMT2 (~501 μM) resulted that SlGOMT1 is 31-fold more catalytically efficient than SlGOMT2. qRT-PCR expression analysis showed that the SlGOMT genes are specifically expressed in flowers and male S. latifolia flowers had 3- to 4-folds higher level of GOMT gene transcripts than female flower tissues. Two related cDNAs, S. dioica O-methyltransferase1 (SdOMT1) and S. dioica O-methyltransferase2 (SdOMT2), were also obtained from the sister species Silene dioica, but the proteins they encode did not methylate guaiacol, consistent with the lack of veratrole emission in the flowers of this species. Our evolutionary analysis uncovered that SlGOMT1 and SlGOMT2 genes evolved under positive selection, whereas SdOMT1 and SdOMT2 genes show no evidence for selection. Conclusions Altogether, we report the identification and functional characterization of the gene, SlGOMT1 that efficiently catalyzes veratrole formation, whereas another copy of this gene with only one amino acid difference, SlGOMT2 was found to be less efficient for veratrole synthesis in S. latifolia. PMID:22937972

  18. Microdialysis with radiometric monitoring of L-[β-11C]DOPA to assess dopaminergic metabolism: effect of inhibitors of L-amino acid decarboxylase, monoamine oxidase, and catechol-O-methyltransferase on rat striatal dialysate.

    PubMed

    Okada, Maki; Nakao, Ryuji; Hosoi, Rie; Zhang, Ming-Rong; Fukumura, Toshimitsu; Suzuki, Kazutoshi; Inoue, Osamu

    2011-01-01

    The catecholamine, dopamine (DA), is synthesized from 3,4-dihydroxy-L-phenylalanine (L-DOPA) by aromatic L-amino acid decarboxylase (AADC). Dopamine metabolism is regulated by monoamine oxidase (MAO) and catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT). To measure dopaminergic metabolism, we used microdialysis with radiometric detection to monitor L-[β-(11)C]DOPA metabolites in the extracellular space of the rat striatum. We also evaluated the effects of AADC, MAO, and COMT inhibitors on metabolite profiles. The major early species measured after administration of L-[β-(11)C]DOPA were [(11)C]3,4-dihydroxyphenylacetic acid ([(11)C]DOPAC) and [(11)C]homovanillic acid ([(11)C]HVA) in a 1:1 ratio, which shifted toward [(11)C]HVA with time. An AADC inhibitor increased the uptake of L-[β-(11)C]DOPA and L-3-O-methyl-[(11)C]DOPA and delayed the accumulation of [(11)C]DOPAC and [(11)C]HVA. The MAO and COMT inhibitors increased the production of [(11)C]3-methoxytyramine and [(11)C]DOPAC, respectively. These results reflect the L-DOPA metabolic pathway, suggesting that this method may be useful for assessing dopaminergic metabolism. PMID:20407462

  19. Functional characterization of two new members of the caffeoyl CoA O-methyltransferase-like gene family from Vanilla planifolia reveals a new class of plastid-localized O-methyltransferases.

    PubMed

    Widiez, Thomas; Hartman, Thomas G; Dudai, Nativ; Yan, Qing; Lawton, Michael; Havkin-Frenkel, Daphna; Belanger, Faith C

    2011-08-01

    Caffeoyl CoA O-methyltransferases (OMTs) have been characterized from numerous plant species and have been demonstrated to be involved in lignin biosynthesis. Higher plant species are known to have additional caffeoyl CoA OMT-like genes, which have not been well characterized. Here, we identified two new caffeoyl CoA OMT-like genes by screening a cDNA library from specialized hair cells of pods of the orchid Vanilla planifolia. Characterization of the corresponding two enzymes, designated Vp-OMT4 and Vp-OMT5, revealed that in vitro both enzymes preferred as a substrate the flavone tricetin, yet their sequences and phylogenetic relationships to other enzymes are distinct from each other. Quantitative analysis of gene expression indicated a dramatic tissue-specific expression pattern for Vp-OMT4, which was highly expressed in the hair cells of the developing pod, the likely location of vanillin biosynthesis. Although Vp-OMT4 had a lower activity with the proposed vanillin precursor, 3,4-dihydroxybenzaldehyde, than with tricetin, the tissue specificity of expression suggests it may be a candidate for an enzyme involved in vanillin biosynthesis. In contrast, the Vp-OMT5 gene was mainly expressed in leaf tissue and only marginally expressed in pod hair cells. Phylogenetic analysis suggests Vp-OMT5 evolved from a cyanobacterial enzyme and it clustered within a clade in which the sequences from eukaryotic species had predicted chloroplast transit peptides. Transient expression of a GFP-fusion in tobacco demonstrated that Vp-OMT5 was localized in the plastids. This is the first flavonoid OMT demonstrated to be targeted to the plastids. PMID:21629984

  20. Genotype status of the dopamine-related catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) gene corresponds with desirability of "unhealthy" foods.

    PubMed

    Wallace, Deanna L; Aarts, Esther; d'Oleire Uquillas, Federico; Dang, Linh C; Greer, Stephanie M; Jagust, William J; D'Esposito, Mark

    2015-09-01

    The role of dopamine is extensively documented in weight regulation and food intake in both animal models and humans. Yet the role of dopamine has not been well studied in individual differences for food desirability. Genotype status of the dopamine-related catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) gene has been shown to influence dopamine levels, with greater COMT enzymatic activity in val/val individuals corresponding to greater degradation of dopamine. Decreased dopamine has been associated with poorer cognitive control and diminished goal-directed behavior in various behavioral paradigms. Additionally, dopaminergic-rich regions such as the frontal cortex and dorsal striatum have been shown to be important for supporting food-related decision-making. However, the role of dopamine, as assessed by COMT genotype status, in food desirability has not been fully explored. Therefore, we utilized an individual's COMT genotype status (n = 61) and investigated food desirability based on self-rated "healthy" and "unhealthy" food perceptions. Here we found val/val individuals (n = 19) have greater desirability for self-rated "unhealthy" food items, but not self-rated "healthy" food items, as compared to val/met (n = 24) and met/met (n = 18) individuals (p < 0.005). Utilizing an objective health measure for the food items, we also found val/val and val/met individuals have greater desirability for objectively defined "unhealthy" food items, as compared to met/met individuals (p < 0.01). This work further substantiates the role of dopamine in food-related behaviors and more specifically in relationship to food desirability for "unhealthy" food items. PMID:25963102

  1. Cloning of a caffeoyl-coenzyme A O-methyltransferase from Camellia sinensis and analysis of its catalytic activity.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Yue; Lv, Hai-peng; Ma, Cheng-ying; Guo, Li; Tan, Jun-feng; Peng, Qun-hua; Lin, Zhi

    2015-02-01

    Epigallocatechin-3-O-(3-O-methyl) gallate (EGCG3"Me) present in leaves of Camellia sinensis has many beneficial biological activities for human health. However, EGCG3"Me occurs naturally in tea leaves in extremely limited quantities. Finding an enzyme from C. sinensis to catalyze the synthesis of EGCG3"Me is an alternative method to make up for the scarcity of EGCG3"Me in natural situations. In the present study, a complementary DNA (cDNA) encoding region and genomic DNA of the caffeoyl-coenzyme A O-methyltransferase (CCoAOMT) gene were isolated from C. sinensis (designated CsCCoAOMT). Nucleotide sequence analysis of CsCCoAOMT revealed an open reading frame of 738 bp that encodes a polypeptide with a predicted molecular weight of 28 kDa, which correlated well with the results of sodium dodecyl sulfate-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis (SDS-PAGE). The full-length DNA sequence (2678 bp) contained five exons and four introns. The deduced amino acid sequence of CsCCoAOMT shared 92% identity with CCoAOMTs from Codonopsis lanceolata and Betula luminifera. The catalytic activity of CsCCoAOMT was analyzed. Three monomethylated epigallocatechin-3-O-gallate (EGCG) compounds (EGCG4"Me, EGCG3"Me, and EGCG3'Me) were produced by CsCCoAOMT with K(m) in the micromolar range. Real-time polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) experiments indicated that the CsCCoAOMT transcript was present at low levels during the early stages of leaf maturity (the first leaf and bud on a shoot) but the relative expression was augmented at advanced stages of leaf maturity (the third or fourth leaf on a shoot), which accorded well with changes in EGCG3"Me content in fresh leaves. Hence, we concluded that CsCCoAOMT catalyzes the syntheses of methylated EGCGs. PMID:25644465

  2. Structural basis of substrate specificity and regiochemistry in the MycF/TylF family of sugar O-methyltransferases.

    PubMed

    Bernard, Steffen M; Akey, David L; Tripathi, Ashootosh; Park, Sung Ryeol; Konwerski, Jamie R; Anzai, Yojiro; Li, Shengying; Kato, Fumio; Sherman, David H; Smith, Janet L

    2015-05-15

    Sugar moieties in natural products are frequently modified by O-methylation. In the biosynthesis of the macrolide antibiotic mycinamicin, methylation of a 6'-deoxyallose substituent occurs in a stepwise manner first at the 2'- and then the 3'-hydroxyl groups to produce the mycinose moiety in the final product. The timing and placement of the O-methylations impact final stage C-H functionalization reactions mediated by the P450 monooxygenase MycG. The structural basis of pathway ordering and substrate specificity is unknown. A series of crystal structures of MycF, the 3'-O-methyltransferase, including the free enzyme and complexes with S-adenosyl homocysteine (SAH), substrate, product, and unnatural substrates, show that SAM binding induces substantial ordering that creates the binding site for the natural substrate, and a bound metal ion positions the substrate for catalysis. A single amino acid substitution relaxed the 2'-methoxy specificity but retained regiospecificity. The engineered variant produced a new mycinamicin analog, demonstrating the utility of structural information to facilitate bioengineering approaches for the chemoenzymatic synthesis of complex small molecules containing modified sugars. Using the MycF substrate complex and the modeled substrate complex of a 4'-specific homologue, active site residues were identified that correlate with the 3' or 4' specificity of MycF family members and define the protein and substrate features that direct the regiochemistry of methyltransfer. This classification scheme will be useful in the annotation of new secondary metabolite pathways that utilize this family of enzymes. PMID:25692963

  3. Association of Catechol-O-methyltransferase val/met polymorphism with cognitive function in Gilles de la Tourette syndrome patients.

    PubMed

    Ji, Weidong; Li, Ning; Ju, Kang; Zheng, Hong; Yang, Chuang; Xu, Ping; Chen, Silu; Cao, Aiai; Chen, Xue; Guo, Lanting

    2015-04-01

    Gilles de la Tourette syndrome (GTS) is a kind of neuropsychiatric disorder with childhood onset. The cognitive dysfunction caused by GTS could affect the growth and learning of children and adolescents. The mechanism of cognitive functions was associated with dopaminergic system, thus we access the associations between polymorphism of some dopaminergic system-related genes including Catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) met/val, Dopamine receptor D4 (DRD4) exon III 48 bp VNTR (variable number of tandem repeats), Interleukin 1 (IL-1) Ra 86 bp and IL-1β exon 5, and cognitive functions in GTS patients. Genotyping analysis was performed through polymerase chain reaction (PCR). Test for cognitive functions of GTS patients included modified wisconsin card sorting test (WCST), trail making test, visual reproduction test, stroop test and verbal fluency test. The patients with COMT met/met genotype showed less perseverative errors in modified WCST test compared with patients with COMT val/val genotype (P < 0.05). Meanwhile, patients without allele val had better delayed memory in visual reproduction test, less errors in the stroop test and less perseverative errors in modified WCST test compared with patients with allele val (P < 0.05). However, no significant difference was found in cognitive functions among patients with different genotypes or alleles of polymorphisms of DRD4 exon III 48 bp VNTR, IL-1 Ra 86 bp and IL-1β exon 5 (P > 0.05). Polymorphism of COMT met/val was correlated with cognitive functions in GTS patients. This study provided basis for the analysis of molecular genetic pathology of cognitive dysfunctions in GTS. PMID:25367405

  4. A farnesoic acid O-methyltransferase (FAMeT) from Exopalaemon carinicauda is responsive to Vibrio anguillarum and WSSV challenge.

    PubMed

    Duan, Yafei; Liu, Ping; Li, Jitao; Wang, Yun; Li, Jian; Chen, Ping

    2014-05-01

    Methyl farnesoate (MF), an analogue of the insect juvenile hormone III, is believed to play important roles in the regulation of the growth and reproductive development in crustaceans. Farnesoic acid O-methyltransferase (FAMeT) is the key enzyme in the juvenile hormone biosynthetic pathway, involved in the conversion of farnesoic acid (FA) to MF in the final step of MF synthesis. In this study, a FAMeT cDNA (named EcFAMeT) was cloned from the hemocytes of ridgetail white prawn Exopalaemon carinicauda by rapid amplification of cDNA ends (RACE) methods. The full-length cDNA of EcFAMeT was 1,620 bp, including contains a 5'-untranslated region (UTR) of 75 bp, 3'-UTR of 714 bp with a poly (A) tail, an open reading frame (ORF) of 831 bp, encoding a 276-amino-acid polypeptide with the predicted molecular weight of 31.57 kDa and estimated isoelectric point of 4.67. BLAST analysis revealed that amino acids of EcFAMeT shared high identity (75-90 %) with that of other crustaceans. Two conserved signatures domains of Methyltransf-FA superfamily were also identified in EcFAMeT. Real time quantitative RT-PCR analysis indicated that EcFAMeT could be detected in all the tested tissues and strongly expressed in hepatopancreas and ovary of E. carinicauda. After Vibrio anguillarum and WSSV challenge, EcFAMeT transcripts both in hemocytes and hepatopancreas increased significantly in the first 3 h, respectively. The results indicated that EcFAMeT might be associated with the immune defenses to V. anguillarum and WSSV in E. carinicauda. PMID:24136172

  5. Differential Genetic and Epigenetic Regulation of catechol-O-methyltransferase is Associated with Impaired Fear Inhibition in Posttraumatic Stress Disorder

    PubMed Central

    Norrholm, Seth Davin; Jovanovic, Tanja; Smith, Alicia K.; Binder, Elisabeth; Klengel, Torsten; Conneely, Karen; Mercer, Kristina B.; Davis, Jennifer S.; Kerley, Kimberly; Winkler, Jennifer; Gillespie, Charles F.; Bradley, Bekh; Ressler, Kerry J.

    2013-01-01

    The catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) enzyme is critical for the catabolic regulation of synaptic dopamine, resulting in altered cortical functioning. The COMT Val158Met polymorphism has been implicated in human mental illness, with Met/Met homozygotes associated with increased susceptibility to posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Our primary objective was to examine the intermediate phenotype of fear inhibition in PTSD stratified by COMT genotype (Met/Met, Val/Met, and Val/Val) and differential gene regulation via methylation status at CpG sites in the COMT promoter region. More specifically, we examined the potential interaction of COMT genotype and PTSD diagnosis on fear-potentiated startle during fear conditioning and extinction and COMT DNA methylation levels (as determined using genomic DNA isolated from whole blood). Participants were recruited from medical and gynecological clinics of an urban hospital in Atlanta, GA, USA. We found that individuals with the Met/Met genotype demonstrated higher fear-potentiated startle to the CS− (safety signal) and during extinction of the CS+ (danger signal) compared to Val/Met and Val/Val genotypes. The PTSD+ Met/Met genotype group had the greatest impairment in fear inhibition to the CS− (p = 0.006), compared to Val carriers. In addition, the Met/Met genotype was associated with DNA methylation at four CpG sites, two of which were associated with impaired fear inhibition to the safety signal. These results suggest that multiple differential mechanisms for regulating COMT function – at the level of protein structure via the Val158Met genotype and at the level of gene regulation via differential methylation – are associated with impaired fear inhibition in PTSD. PMID:23596403

  6. Catechol-O-methyltransferase genotype (Val158met) modulates cancer-related fatigue and pain sensitivity in breast cancer survivors.

    PubMed

    Fernández-de-las-Peñas, César; Fernández-Lao, Carolina; Cantarero-Villanueva, Irene; Ambite-Quesada, Silvia; Rivas-Martínez, Inés; del Moral-Avila, Rosario; Arroyo-Morales, Manuel

    2012-06-01

    Cancer-related fatigue and pain after surgery are the most frequent and most incapacitating cancer-related symptoms after breast cancer treatment. Genetic influence of cancer-related fatigue and pain has not been previously investigated. Our aim was to examine the influence of catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) Val158Met genotypes on cancer-related fatigue, post-mastectomy pain, and pressure pain hypersensitivity in breast cancer survivors. One-hundred and twenty-eight (n = 128) breast cancer survivors who were treated with radiotherapy and chemotherapy participated in this study. After amplifying Val158Met polymorphisms by polymerase chain reaction, COMT genotype was divided into Val/Val, valine/methionine (Val/Met), or Met/Met. The Piper fatigue scale (PFS) was used to assess cancer-related fatigue. Neck and shoulder/axillary pain intensity was assessed with a numerical pain rate scale (0-10). Finally, pressure pain thresholds (PPT) were assessed bilaterally over the C5-C6 zygapophyseal joints, deltoid muscles, second metacarpal, and tibialis anterior muscles. Breast cancer survivors carrying the Met/Met genotype reported higher levels of fatigue (all subscales, P < 0.001), higher neck pain intensity, and lower PPT over C5-C6 joints and deltoid muscles (all, P < 0.001) relative to those with Val/Met or Val/Val genotypes. The results suggest that breast cancer survivors carrying the Met/Met genotype exhibit higher fatigue, neck pain, and pressure pain hypersensitivity over the neck and shoulder area. This study is important because it strives to understand the factors that predispose some breast cancer survivors to more cancer-related fatigue and increased pain sensitivity. PMID:21898113

  7. Catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) genotype moderates the effects of childhood trauma on cognition and symptoms in schizophrenia.

    PubMed

    Green, Melissa J; Chia, T-Yunn; Cairns, Murray J; Wu, Jingqin; Tooney, Paul A; Scott, Rodney J; Carr, Vaughan J

    2014-02-01

    The interaction of genetic and environmental factors may affect the course and development of psychotic disorders. We examined whether the effects of childhood trauma on cognition and symptoms in schizophrenia were moderated by the Catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) Val(158)Met polymorphism, a common genetic variant known to affect cognition and prefrontal dopamine levels. Participants were 429 schizophrenia/schizoaffective cases from the Australian Schizophrenia Research Bank (ASRB). Cognitive performance was assessed using the Repeatable Battery for Assessment of Neuropsychological Status (RBANS), Controlled Oral Word Association Test (COWAT), Letter Number Sequencing (LNS) test, and the Wechsler Test of Adult Reading (WTAR). Hierarchical regression was used to test the main effects and additive interaction effects of genotype and childhood trauma in the domains of physical abuse, emotional abuse, and emotional neglect, on cognition and symptom profiles of clinical cases. Consistent with previous findings, COMT Val homozygotes performed worse on cognitive measures in the absence of childhood adversity. In addition, a significant interaction between COMT genotype and physical abuse was associated with better executive function in Val homozygotes, relative to those of the same genotype with no history of abuse. Finally, the severity of positive symptoms was greater in Met carriers who had experienced physical abuse, and the severity of negative symptoms in Met carriers was greater in the presence of emotional neglect. These results suggest that the possible epigenetic modulation of the expression of the COMT Val(158)Met polymorphism and consequent effects on cognition and symptoms in schizophrenia, with worse outcomes associated with adverse childhood experiences in Met carriers. PMID:24252819

  8. Catechol-O-Methyltransferase Val158Met Polymorphism on the Relationship between White Matter Hyperintensity and Cognition in Healthy People

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Mu-En; Huang, Chu-Chung; Yang, Albert C.; Tu, Pei-Chi; Yeh, Heng-Liang; Hong, Chen-Jee; Liou, Ying-Jay; Chen, Jin-Fan; Chou, Kun-Hsien; Lin, Ching-Po; Tsai, Shih-Jen

    2014-01-01

    Background White matter lesions can be easily observed on T2-weighted MR images, and are termed white matter hyperintensities (WMH). Their presence may be correlated with cognitive impairment; however, the relationship between regional WMH volume and catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) Val158Met polymorphism in healthy populations remains unclear. Methods We recruited 315 ethnic Chinese adults with a mean age of 54.9±21.8 years (range: 21–89 y) to examine the genetic effect of COMT on regional WMH and the manner in which they interact to affect cognitive function in a healthy adult population. Cognitive tests, structural MRI scans, and genotyping of COMT were conducted for each participant. Results Negative correlations between the Digit Span Forward (DSF) score and frontal WMH volumes (r = −.123, P = .032, uncorrected) were noted. For the genetic effect of COMT, no significant difference in cognitive performance was observed among 3 genotypic groups. However, differences in WMH volumes over the subcortical region (P = .016, uncorrected), whole brain (P = .047, uncorrected), and a trend over the frontal region (P = .050, uncorrected) were observed among 3 COMT genotypic groups. Met homozygotes and Met/Val heterozygotes exhibited larger WMH volumes in these brain regions than the Val homozygotes. Furthermore, a correlation between the DSF and regional WMH volume was observed only in Met homozygotes. The effect size (cohen’s f) revealed a small effect. Conclusions The results indicate that COMT might modulate WMH volumes and the effects of WMH on cognition. PMID:24551149

  9. Modulation of brain structure by catechol-O-methyltransferase Val(158) Met polymorphism in chronic cannabis users.

    PubMed

    Batalla, Albert; Soriano-Mas, Carles; López-Solà, Marina; Torrens, Marta; Crippa, José A; Bhattacharyya, Sagnik; Blanco-Hinojo, Laura; Fagundo, Ana B; Harrison, Ben J; Nogué, Santiago; de la Torre, Rafael; Farré, Magí; Pujol, Jesús; Martín-Santos, Rocío

    2014-07-01

    Neuroimaging studies have shown that chronic consumption of cannabis may result in alterations in brain morphology. Recent work focusing on the relationship between brain structure and the catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) gene polymorphism suggests that functional COMT variants may affect brain volume in healthy individuals and in schizophrenia patients. We measured the influence of COMT genotype on the volume of four key regions: the prefrontal cortex, neostriatum (caudate-putamen), anterior cingulate cortex and hippocampus-amygdala complex, in chronic early-onset cannabis users and healthy control subjects. We selected 29 chronic cannabis users who began using cannabis before 16 years of age and matched them to 28 healthy volunteers in terms of age, educational level and IQ. Participants were male, Caucasians aged between 18 and 30 years. All were assessed by a structured psychiatric interview (PRISM) to exclude any lifetime Axis-I disorder according to Diagnostic and Statistical Manual for Mental Disorders-Fourth Edition. COMT genotyping was performed and structural magnetic resonance imaging data was analyzed by voxel-based morphometry. The results showed that the COMT polymorphism influenced the volume of the bilateral ventral caudate nucleus in both groups, but in an opposite direction: more copies of val allele led to lesser volume in chronic cannabis users and more volume in controls. The opposite pattern was found in left amygdala. There were no effects of COMT genotype on volumes of the whole brain or the other selected regions. Our findings support recent reports of neuroanatomical changes associated with cannabis use and, for the first time, reveal that these changes may be influenced by the COMT genotype. PMID:23311613

  10. Methylation of sulfhydryl groups: a new function for a family of small molecule plant O-methyltransferases

    PubMed Central

    Coiner, Heather; Schröder, Gudrun; Wehinger, Elke; Liu, Chang-Jun; Noel, Joseph P.; Schwab, Wilfried; Schröder, Joachim

    2010-01-01

    Summary In plants, type I and II S-adenosyl-L-methionine-dependent O-methyltransferases (OMTs) catalyze most hydroxyl group methylations of small molecules. A homology-based RT-PCR strategy using Catharanthus roseus (Madagascar periwinkle) RNA previously identified six new type I plant OMT family members. We now describe the molecular and biochemical characterization of a seventh protein. It shares 56–58% identity with caffeic acid OMTs (COMTs), but it failed to methylate COMT substrates, and had no activity with flavonoids. However, the in vitro incubations revealed unusually high background levels without added substrates. A search for the responsible component revealed that the enzyme methylated dithiothreitol (DTT), the reducing agent added for enzyme stabilization. Unexpectedly, product analysis revealed that the methylation occurred on a sulfhydryl moiety, not on a hydroxyl group. Analysis of 34 compounds indicated a broad substrate range, with a preference for small hydrophobic molecules. Benzene thiol (Km 220 μM) and furfuryl thiol (Km 60 μM) were the best substrates (6–7-fold better than DTT). Small isosteric hydrophobic substrates with hydroxyl groups, like phenol and guaiacol, were also methylated, but the activities were at least 5-fold lower than with thiols. The enzyme was named C. roseus S-methyltransferase 1 (CrSMT1). Models based on the COMT crystal structure suggest that S-methylation is mechanistically identical to O-methylation. CrSMT1 so far is the only recognized example of an S-methyltransferase in this protein family. Its properties indicate that a few changes in key residues are sufficient to convert an OMT into a S-methyltransferase (SMT). Future functional investigations of plant methyltransferases should consider the possibility that the enzymes may direct methylation at sulfhydryl groups. PMID:16623883

  11. Cloning of a caffeoyl-coenzyme A O-methyltransferase from Camellia sinensis and analysis of its catalytic activity*

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Yue; Lv, Hai-peng; Ma, Cheng-ying; Guo, Li; Tan, Jun-feng; Peng, Qun-hua; Lin, Zhi

    2015-01-01

    Epigallocatechin-3-O-(3-O-methyl) gallate (EGCG3"Me) present in leaves of Camellia sinensis has many beneficial biological activities for human health. However, EGCG3"Me occurs naturally in tea leaves in extremely limited quantities. Finding an enzyme from C. sinensis to catalyze the synthesis of EGCG3"Me is an alternative method to make up for the scarcity of EGCG3"Me in natural situations. In the present study, a complementary DNA (cDNA) encoding region and genomic DNA of the caffeoyl-coenzyme A O-methyltransferase (CCoAOMT) gene were isolated from C. sinensis (designated CsCCoAOMT). Nucleotide sequence analysis of CsCCoAOMT revealed an open reading frame of 738 bp that encodes a polypeptide with a predicted molecular weight of 28 kDa, which correlated well with the results of sodium dodecyl sulfate-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis (SDS-PAGE). The full-length DNA sequence (2678 bp) contained five exons and four introns. The deduced amino acid sequence of CsCCoAOMT shared 92% identity with CCoAOMTs from Codonopsis lanceolata and Betula luminifera. The catalytic activity of CsCCoAOMT was analyzed. Three monomethylated epigallocatechin-3-O-gallate (EGCG) compounds (EGCG4"Me, EGCG3"Me, and EGCG3'Me) were produced by CsCCoAOMT with K m in the micromolar range. Real-time polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) experiments indicated that the CsCCoAOMT transcript was present at low levels during the early stages of leaf maturity (the first leaf and bud on a shoot) but the relative expression was augmented at advanced stages of leaf maturity (the third or fourth leaf on a shoot), which accorded well with changes in EGCG3"Me content in fresh leaves. Hence, we concluded that CsCCoAOMT catalyzes the syntheses of methylated EGCGs. PMID:25644465

  12. Structural Basis of Substrate Specificity and Regiochemistry in the MycF/TylF Family of Sugar O-Methyltransferases

    PubMed Central

    Bernard, Steffen M.; Akey, David L.; Tripathi, Ashootosh; Park, Sung Ryeol; Konwerski, Jamie R.; Anzai, Yojiro; Li, Shengying; Kato, Fumio; Sherman, David H.; Smith, Janet L.

    2015-01-01

    Sugar moieties in natural products are frequently modified by O-methylation. In the biosynthesis of the macrolide antibiotic mycinamicin, methylation of a 6′-deoxyallose substituent occurs in a stepwise manner first at the 2′- and then the 3′-hydroxyl groups to produce the mycinose moiety in the final product. The timing and placement of the O-methylations impact final stage C-H functionalization reactions mediated by the P450 monooxygenase MycG. The structural basis of pathway ordering and substrate specificity is unknown. A series of crystal structures of MycF, the 3′-O-methyltransferase, including the free enzyme and complexes with S-adenosyl homocysteine (SAH), substrate, product, and unnatural substrates, show that SAM binding induces substantial ordering that creates the binding site for the natural substrate, and a bound metal ion positions the substrate for catalysis. A single amino acid substitution relaxed the 2′-methoxy specificity but retained regiospecificity. The engineered variant produced a new mycinamicin analog, demonstrating the utility of structural information to facilitate bioengineering approaches for the chemoenzymatic synthesis of complex small molecules containing modified sugars. Using the MycF substrate complex and the modeled substrate complex of a 4′-specific homolog, active site residues were identified that correlate with the 3′- or 4′- specificity of MycF family members and define the protein and substrate features that direct the regiochemistry of methyltransfer. This classification scheme will be useful in the annotation of new secondary metabolite pathways that utilize this family of enzymes. PMID:25692963

  13. Analysis of catechol-O-methyltransferase gene mutation and identification of new pathogenic gene for paroxysmal kinesigenic dyskinesia.

    PubMed

    Gu, Chengzhi; Li, Jia; Zhu, Lianhai; Lu, Zhenhui; Huang, Huaiyu

    2016-03-01

    We aimed to analyze the mutation site and frequency of catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) gene, to explore the relationship between COMT genotype and phenotype, and to find new pathogenic genes for paroxysmal kinesigenic dyskinesia (PKD). PKD patients who were treated from December 2011 to January 2014 were selected and subjected to genetic testing in the exon region of COMT. Two patients and one intrafamilial healthy control were subjected to exome sequencing using whole exome capture in combination with high-throughput sequencing to find candidate pathogenic gene sites. The results were verified by Sanger sequencing. A total of 11 familial PKD patients from 4 families and 9 sporadic patients without family history were included. Pathogenic c.634dupC(p.P220fsX7) mutation of COMT gene was found in 7 familial PKD patients and3 sporadic patients. Mutated COMT gene carriers suffered from PKD earlier (average age of onset: 11.61 ± 2.33 vs 16.21 ± 2.58, P = 0.001) with symmetric symptoms in most cases, while the mutation-negative group only showed unilateral symptoms (P = 0.001). The mutation-positive group also had more daily attacks (P = 0.038). Carbamazepine worked for all mutation-positive patients (10/10, 100%), but only for a part of mutation-negative patients (3/10, 30.0%). About 90000 single nucleotide polymorphisms and 2000 insertion-deletion polymorphisms were detected in each of the three samples. c.737C → T(p.T246 M) mutation of POC1B gene was a new pathogenic site for a selected family. COMT gene mutation, which was the pathogenesis of most familial PKD patients and a part of sporadic patients, predicted the response to carbamazepine. POC1B may be a novel pathogenic gene for PKD. PMID:26650803

  14. The relationship between childhood abuse and dissociation. Is it influenced by catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) activity?

    PubMed

    Savitz, Jonathan B; van der Merwe, Lize; Newman, Timothy K; Solms, Mark; Stein, Dan J; Ramesar, Rajkumar S

    2008-03-01

    Dissociation is a failure of perceptual, memorial and emotional integration that is associated with a variety of psychiatric disorders. Dissociative processes are usually attributed to the sequelae of childhood trauma although there are data to suggest that genetic influences are also important. Bipolar disorder (BD), a condition with a strong genetic basis, has also been associated with early psychological trauma. Since childhood trauma is a risk factor for both BD and dissociation, we tested for potential gene-childhood abuse interactions on dissociation in a pilot sample of BD probands and their affected and unaffected relatives (n=178). Dissociation was measured with the Dissociative Experiences Scale (DES II) and childhood maltreatment with the Childhood Trauma Questionnaire (CTQ). The BD and recurrent unipolar depression (MDE-R) groups showed higher levels of self-reported abuse and dissociation than their unaffected relatives. The low-activity Met allele of the Val66Met polymorphism of the brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) gene was associated with lower levels of self-reported dissociation. Further, the functional catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) Val158Met polymorphism interacted significantly with total CTQ abuse scores to impact perceived dissociation. The Val/Val genotype was associated with increasing levels of dissociation in participants exposed to higher levels of childhood trauma. The opposite was observed in people with Met/Met genotypes who displayed decreased dissociation with increasing self-reported childhood trauma. The current findings support the involvement of the COMT Val158Met polymorphism in mediating the relationship between trauma and psychopathology. PMID:17608961

  15. The maize glossy13 gene, cloned via BSR-Seq and Seq-walking encodes a putative ABC transporter required for the normal accumulation of epicuticular waxes.

    PubMed

    Li, Li; Li, Delin; Liu, Sanzhen; Ma, Xiaoli; Dietrich, Charles R; Hu, Heng-Cheng; Zhang, Gaisheng; Liu, Zhiyong; Zheng, Jun; Wang, Guoying; Schnable, Patrick S

    2013-01-01

    Aerial plant surfaces are covered by epicuticular waxes that among other purposes serve to control water loss. Maize glossy mutants originally identified by their "glossy" phenotypes exhibit alterations in the accumulation of epicuticular waxes. By combining data from a BSR-Seq experiment and the newly developed Seq-Walking technology, GRMZM2G118243 was identified as a strong candidate for being the glossy13 gene. The finding that multiple EMS-induced alleles contain premature stop codons in GRMZM2G118243, and the one knockout allele of gl13, validates the hypothesis that gene GRMZM2G118243 is gl13. Consistent with this, GRMZM2G118243 is an ortholog of AtABCG32 (Arabidopsis thaliana), HvABCG31 (barley) and OsABCG31 (rice), which encode ABCG subfamily transporters involved in the trans-membrane transport of various secondary metabolites. We therefore hypothesize that gl13 is involved in the transport of epicuticular waxes onto the surfaces of seedling leaves. PMID:24324772

  16. Genetic Analysis of Strawberry Fruit Aroma and Identification of O-Methyltransferase FaOMT as the Locus Controlling Natural Variation in Mesifurane Content1[C][W][OA

    PubMed Central

    Zorrilla-Fontanesi, Yasmín; Rambla, José-Luis; Cabeza, Amalia; Medina, Juan J.; Sánchez-Sevilla, José F.; Valpuesta, Victoriano; Botella, Miguel A.; Granell, Antonio; Amaya, Iraida

    2012-01-01

    Improvement of strawberry (Fragaria × ananassa) fruit flavor is an important goal in breeding programs. To investigate genetic factors controlling this complex trait, a strawberry mapping population derived from genotype ‘1392’, selected for its superior flavor, and ‘232’ was profiled for volatile compounds over 4 years by headspace solid phase microextraction coupled to gas chromatography and mass spectrometry. More than 300 volatile compounds were detected, of which 87 were identified by comparison of mass spectrum and retention time to those of pure standards. Parental line ‘1392’ displayed higher volatile levels than ‘232’, and these and many other compounds with similar levels in both parents segregated in the progeny. Cluster analysis grouped the volatiles into distinct chemically related families and revealed a complex metabolic network underlying volatile production in strawberry fruit. Quantitative trait loci (QTL) detection was carried out over 3 years based on a double pseudo-testcross strategy. Seventy QTLs covering 48 different volatiles were detected, with several of them being stable over time and mapped as major QTLs. Loci controlling γ-decalactone and mesifurane content were mapped as qualitative traits. Using a candidate gene approach we have assigned genes that are likely responsible for several of the QTLs. As a proof of concept we show that one homoeolog of the O-methyltransferase gene (FaOMT) is the locus responsible for the natural variation of mesifurane content. Sequence analysis identified 30 bp in the promoter of this FaOMT homoeolog containing putative binding sites for basic/helix-loop-helix, MYB, and BZIP transcription factors. This polymorphism fully cosegregates with both the presence of mesifurane and the high expression of FaOMT during ripening. PMID:22474217

  17. SpnH from Saccharopolyspora spinosa encodes a rhamnosyl 4'-O-methyltransferase for biosynthesis of the insecticidal macrolide, spinosyn A.

    PubMed

    Huang, Ke-xue; Zahn, James; Han, Lei

    2008-12-01

    Deoxysugar, 2', 3', 4'-tri-O-methylrhamnose is an essential structural component of spinosyn A and D, which are the active ingredients of the commercial insect control agent, Spinosad. The spnH gene, which was previously assigned as a rhamnose O-methyltransferase based on gene sequence homology, was cloned from the wild-type Saccharopolyspora spinosa and from a spinosyn K-producing mutant that was defective in the 4'-O-methylation of 2', 3'-tri-O-methylrhamnose. DNA sequencing confirmed a mutation resulting in an amino acid substitution of G-165 to A-165 in the rhamnosyl 4'-O-methyltransferase of the mutant strain, and the subsequent sequence analysis showed that the mutation occurred in a highly conserved region of the translated amino acid sequence. Both spnH and the gene defective in 4'-O-methylation activity (spnH165A) were expressed heterologously in E. coli and were then purified to homogeneity using a His-tag affinity column. Substrate bioconversion studies showed that the enzyme encoded by spnH, but not spnH165A, could utilize spinosyn K as a substrate. When the wild-type spnH gene was transformed into the spinosyn K-producing mutant, spinosyn A production was restored. These results establish that the enzyme encoded by the spnH gene in wild-type S. spinosa is a rhamnosyl 4'-O-methyltransferase that is responsible for the final rhamnosyl methylation step in the biosynthesis of spinosyn A. PMID:18704529

  18. The catechol-O-methyltransferase Val(158)Met polymorphism modulates fronto-cortical dopamine turnover in early Parkinson's disease: a PET study.

    PubMed

    Wu, Kit; O'Keeffe, Deirdre; Politis, Marios; O'Keeffe, Grainne C; Robbins, Trevor W; Bose, Subrata K; Brooks, David J; Piccini, Paola; Barker, Roger A

    2012-08-01

    Cognitive deficits occur in up to 30% of patients with early Parkinson's disease, some of which are thought to result from dysfunction within the fronto-striatal dopaminergic network. Recently, it has been shown that a common functional polymorphism (Val(158)Met) in the catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) gene is associated with changes in executive performance in tasks that have a fronto-striatal basis. This is thought to relate to changes in cortical dopamine levels as catechol-O-methyltransferase is the main mode of inactivation for dopamine in frontal areas. However to date, no study has investigated dopamine turnover as a function of this genetic polymorphism in Parkinson's disease. We, therefore, set out to investigate in vivo changes in presynaptic dopamine storage in patients with idiopathic Parkinson's disease as a function of the catechol-O-methyltransferase Val(158)Met polymorphism using (18)F-DOPA positron emission tomography. Twenty patients with Parkinson's disease (10 homozygous for Val/Val and 10 for Met/Met catechol-O-methyltransferase polymorphisms) underwent (18)F-DOPA positron emission tomography using a prolonged imaging protocol. The first dynamic scan was acquired from 0 to 90 min (early), and the second scan (late) from 150 to 210 min post-intravenous radioligand administration. Patients were matched for age, sex, verbal IQ, disease duration and severity of motor features. (18)F-DOPA influx constants (Ki) were calculated and compared for frontal and striatal regions. Late scan mean frontal and striatal Ki values were significantly reduced in both Parkinson's disease groups relative to early scan Ki values. Met/Met patients had significantly higher late scan Ki values compared with their Val/Val counterparts in anterior cingulate, superior frontal and mid-frontal regions but early frontal Ki values were not different between the two groups. As late Ki values reflect rates of dopamine metabolism to 3,4-dihydroxyphenylacetic acid and

  19. Conscientiousness is modified by genetic variation in catechol-O-methyltransferase to reduce symptom complaints in IBS patients

    PubMed Central

    Hall, Kathryn T; Tolkin, Benjamin R; Chinn, Garrett M; Kirsch, Irving; Kelley, John M; Lembo, Anthony J; Kaptchuk, Ted J; Kokkotou, Efi; Davis, Roger B; Conboy, Lisa A

    2015-01-01

    Background Attention to and perception of physical sensations and somatic states can significantly influence reporting of complaints and symptoms in the context of clinical care and randomized trials. Although anxiety and high neuroticism are known to increase the frequency and severity of complaints, it is not known if other personality dimensions or genes associated with cognitive function or sympathetic tone can influence complaints. Genetic variation in catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) is associated with anxiety, personality, pain, and response to placebo treatment. We hypothesized that the association of complaint reporting with personality might be modified by variation in the COMT val158met genotype. Methods We administered a standard 25-item complaint survey weekly over 3-weeks to a convenience sample of 187 irritable bowel syndrome patients enrolled in a placebo intervention trial and conducted a repeated measures analysis. Results We found that complaint severity rating, our primary outcome, was negatively associated with the personality measures of conscientiousness (β = −0.31 SE 0.11, P = 0.003) and agreeableness (β = −0.38 SE 0.12, P = 0.002) and was positively associated with neuroticism (β = 0.24 SE 0.09, P = 0.005) and anxiety (β = 0.48 SE 0.09, P < 0.0001). We also found a significant interaction effect of COMT met alleles (β = −32.5 SE 14.1, P = 0.021). in patients genotyped for COMT val158met (N  = 87) specifically COMT × conscientiousness (β = 0.73 SE 0.26, P = 0.0042) and COMT × anxiety (β = −0.42 SE 0.16, P = 0.0078) interaction effects. Conclusion These findings potentially broaden our understanding of the factors underlying clinical complaints to include the personality dimension of conscientiousness and its modification by COMT. PMID:25722948

  20. The central catechol-O-methyltransferase inhibitor tolcapone increases striatal hydroxyl radical production in L-DOPA/carbidopa treated rats.

    PubMed

    Gerlach, M; Xiao, A Y; Kuhn, W; Lehnfeld, R; Waldmeier, P; Sontag, K H; Riederer, P

    2001-01-01

    Inhibition of catechol catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) in the brains of subjects treated with L-DOPA (L-3,4-dihydroxylphenylalanine) and an aromatic amino acid decarboxylase (AADC) inhibitor is suggested to cause an increase of L-DOPA, which might lead to oxidative damage through enhanced formation of free radicals. To investigate this hypothesis, the acute effects of two doses of the systemically administered COMT inhibitors entacapone (peripheral) and tolcapone (peripheral and central) on the extracellular formation of hydroxyl radicals in vivo following treatment with L-DOPA and the AADC inhibitor carbidopa were examined. The formation of extracellular hydroxyl radicals were determined by the measurement of 2,3-dihydroxybenzoic acid (2,3-DHBA), a reaction product of hydroxyl radicals with sodium salicylate, using microdialysis in the striatum of anesthetised rats. The COMT inhibitors were administered together with 50 mg/kg i.p. carbidopa as 5% gum arabic suspensions intraperitoneally (i.p.) at doses of 0, 1.0, and 10 mg/kg body weight to a total of 36 male HAN-Wistars rats. L-DOPA was injected i.p. 40 min after drugs of interest. Microdialysis samples were collected every 20 min for 400 min at a perfusion rate of 1 microl/min. Systemically administered 10 mg/kg tolcapone, but not entacapone, induced an increase in hydroxyl radical formation in the striatum of anesthetised rats following treatment with L-DOPA/carbidopa. The increase in hydroxyl radical formation was reflected by higher extracellular concentrations of the hydroxylate product of salicylate, 2,3-DHBA, peaking at 192% of baseline at the end of the observation period. Similar results were also found using the AUC (area under the curve) value estimated for the observation period. We conclude that the increase in hydroxyl radical formation is likely to result from an increased rate of monoamine oxidase-mediated and non-enzymatic (autoxidation) dopamine metabolism following increased central

  1. Cloning and characterization of a norbelladine 4'-O-methyltransferase involved in the biosynthesis of the Alzheimer's drug galanthamine in Narcissus sp. aff. pseudonarcissus.

    PubMed

    Kilgore, Matthew B; Augustin, Megan M; Starks, Courtney M; O'Neil-Johnson, Mark; May, Gregory D; Crow, John A; Kutchan, Toni M

    2014-01-01

    Galanthamine is an Amaryllidaceae alkaloid used to treat the symptoms of Alzheimer's disease. This compound is primarily isolated from daffodil (Narcissus spp.), snowdrop (Galanthus spp.), and summer snowflake (Leucojum aestivum). Despite its importance as a medicine, no genes involved in the biosynthetic pathway of galanthamine have been identified. This absence of genetic information on biosynthetic pathways is a limiting factor in the development of synthetic biology platforms for many important botanical medicines. The paucity of information is largely due to the limitations of traditional methods for finding biochemical pathway enzymes and genes in non-model organisms. A new bioinformatic approach using several recent technological improvements was applied to search for genes in the proposed galanthamine biosynthetic pathway, first targeting methyltransferases due to strong signature amino acid sequences in the proteins. Using Illumina sequencing, a de novo transcriptome assembly was constructed for daffodil. BLAST was used to identify sequences that contain signatures for plant O-methyltransferases in this transcriptome. The program HAYSTACK was then used to identify methyltransferases that fit a model for galanthamine biosynthesis in leaf, bulb and inflorescence tissues. One candidate gene for the methylation of norbelladine to 4'-O-methylnorbelladine in the proposed galanthamine biosynthetic pathway was identified. This methyltransferase cDNA was expressed in E. coli and the protein purified by affinity chromatography. The resulting protein was found to be a norbelladine 4'-O-methyltransferase (NpN4OMT) of the proposed galanthamine biosynthetic pathway. PMID:25061748

  2. Interactions among catechol-O-methyltransferase genotype, parenting, and sex predict children’s internalizing symptoms and inhibitory control: Evidence for differential susceptibility

    PubMed Central

    SULIK, MICHAEL J.; EISENBERG, NANCY; SPINRAD, TRACY L.; LEMERY-CHALFANT, KATHRYN; SWANN, GREGORY; SILVA, KASSONDRA M.; REISER, MARK; STOVER, DARYN A.; VERRELLI, BRIAN C.

    2015-01-01

    We used sex, observed parenting quality at 18 months, and three variants of the catechol-O-methyltransferase gene (Val158Met [rs4680], intron1 [rs737865], and 3′-untranslated region [rs165599]) to predict mothers’ reports of inhibitory and attentional control (assessed at 42, 54, 72, and 84 months) and internalizing symptoms (assessed at 24, 30, 42, 48, and 54 months) in a sample of 146 children (79 male). Although the pattern for all three variants was very similar, Val158Met explained more variance in both outcomes than did intron1, the 3′-untranslated region, or a haplotype that combined all three catechol-O-methyltransferase variants. In separate models, there were significant three-way interactions among each of the variants, parenting, and sex, predicting the intercepts of inhibitory control and internalizing symptoms. Results suggested that Val158Met indexes plasticity, although this effect was moderated by sex. Parenting was positively associated with inhibitory control for methionine–methionine boys and for valine–valine/valine–methionine girls, and was negatively associated with internalizing symptoms for methionine–methionine boys. Using the “regions of significance” technique, genetic differences in inhibitory control were found for children exposed to high-quality parenting, whereas genetic differences in internalizing were found for children exposed to low-quality parenting. These findings provide evidence in support of testing for differential susceptibility across multiple outcomes. PMID:25159270

  3. Structural and functional characterization of CalS11, a TDP-rhamnose 3′-O-methyltransferase involved in calicheamicin biosynthesis

    PubMed Central

    Singh, Shanteri; Chang, Aram; Helmich, Kate E.; Bingman, Craig A.; Wrobel, Russel L.; Beebe, Emily T.; Makino, Shin-Ichi; Aceti, David J.; Dyer, Kevin; Hura, Greg L.; Sunkara, Manjula; Morris, Andrew J.; Phillips, George N.; Thorson, Jon S.

    2013-01-01

    Sugar methyltransferases (MTs) are an important class of tailoring enzymes which catalyze the transfer of a methyl group from S-adenosyl-L-methionine to sugar-based N-, C- and O- nucleophiles. While sugar N- and C-MTs involved in natural product biosynthesis have been found to act on sugar nucleotide substrates prior to a subsequent glycosyltransferase reaction, corresponding sugar O-methylation reactions studied thus far occur after the glycosyltransfer reaction. Herein we report the first in vitro characterization using 1H-13C-gHSQC with isotopically-labeled substrates and the X-ray structure determination at 1.55 Å resolution of the TDP-3′-O-rhamnose-methyltransferase CalS11 from Micromonospora echinospora. This study highlights a unique NMR-based methyltransferase assay, implicates CalS11 to be a metal and general acid/base-dependent O-methyltransferase and, as a first crystal structure for a TDP-hexose-O-methyltransferase, presents a new template for mechanistic studies and/or engineering. PMID:23662776

  4. A cost-effective colorimetric assay for phenolic O-methyltransferases and characterization of caffeate 3-O-methyltranferases from Populus trichocarpa

    SciTech Connect

    Bhuiya, M.W.; Liu, C.

    2009-01-01

    S-Adenosyl-L-methionine (AdoMet)-dependent O-methyltransferases (OMTs) catalyze the transmethylation of a variety of phenolics in bacteria, plants, and humans. To rapidly characterize phenolic OMT activities, we adapted Gibbs reagent, the dye originally used for detecting phenols, to develop a convenient assay method for measuring the catalytic properties of enzymatic transmethylation of phenolics. We demonstrated that Gibbs reagent reacted with phenolics yielding distinct absorptive characters that we used to further develop the assay to monitor the reactivities of phenolic OMTs. To validate the method, we identified two caffeate/5-hydroxyferulate 3/5-O-methyltransferases (COMTs) from the black cottonwood, Populus trichocarpa. Together with a few other plant type I OMTs, we demonstrated that our Gibbs reagent-mediated colorimetric assay could reliably determine the functions and kinetic parameters of phenolic OMTs. Because Gibbs reagent reacting with different regioselectively modified phenolics displays different colorimetric properties, the assay method can be used to monitor both substrate specificity and the regioselectivity of phenolic OMTs.

  5. A Set of Regioselective O-Methyltransferases Gives Rise to the Complex Pattern of Methoxylated Flavones in Sweet Basil1[C][W][OA

    PubMed Central

    Berim, Anna; Hyatt, David C.; Gang, David R.

    2012-01-01

    Polymethoxylated flavonoids occur in a number of plant families, including the Lamiaceae. To date, the metabolic pathways giving rise to the diversity of these compounds have not been studied. Analysis of our expressed sequence tag database for four sweet basil (Ocimum basilicum) lines afforded identification of candidate flavonoid O-methyltransferase genes. Recombinant proteins displayed distinct substrate preferences and product specificities that can account for all detected 7-/6-/4′-methylated, 8-unsubstituted flavones. Their biochemical specialization revealed only certain metabolic routes to be highly favorable and therefore likely in vivo. Flavonoid O-methyltransferases catalyzing 4′- and 6-O-methylations shared high identity (approximately 90%), indicating that subtle sequence changes led to functional differentiation. Structure homology modeling suggested the involvement of several amino acid residues in defining the proteins’ stringent regioselectivities. The roles of these individual residues were confirmed by site-directed mutagenesis, revealing two discrete mechanisms as a basis for the switch between 6- and 4′-O-methylation of two different substrates. These findings delineate major pathways in a large segment of the flavone metabolic network and provide a foundation for its further elucidation. PMID:22923679

  6. Cloning and Characterization of a Norbelladine 4′-O-Methyltransferase Involved in the Biosynthesis of the Alzheimer’s Drug Galanthamine in Narcissus sp. aff. pseudonarcissus

    PubMed Central

    Kilgore, Matthew B.; Augustin, Megan M.; Starks, Courtney M.; O’Neil-Johnson, Mark; May, Gregory D.; Crow, John A.; Kutchan, Toni M.

    2014-01-01

    Galanthamine is an Amaryllidaceae alkaloid used to treat the symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease. This compound is primarily isolated from daffodil (Narcissus spp.), snowdrop (Galanthus spp.), and summer snowflake (Leucojum aestivum). Despite its importance as a medicine, no genes involved in the biosynthetic pathway of galanthamine have been identified. This absence of genetic information on biosynthetic pathways is a limiting factor in the development of synthetic biology platforms for many important botanical medicines. The paucity of information is largely due to the limitations of traditional methods for finding biochemical pathway enzymes and genes in non-model organisms. A new bioinformatic approach using several recent technological improvements was applied to search for genes in the proposed galanthamine biosynthetic pathway, first targeting methyltransferases due to strong signature amino acid sequences in the proteins. Using Illumina sequencing, a de novo transcriptome assembly was constructed for daffodil. BLAST was used to identify sequences that contain signatures for plant O-methyltransferases in this transcriptome. The program HAYSTACK was then used to identify methyltransferases that fit a model for galanthamine biosynthesis in leaf, bulb and inflorescence tissues. One candidate gene for the methylation of norbelladine to 4′-O-methylnorbelladine in the proposed galanthamine biosynthetic pathway was identified. This methyltransferase cDNA was expressed in E. coli and the protein purified by affinity chromatography. The resulting protein was found to be a norbelladine 4′-O-methyltransferase (NpN4OMT) of the proposed galanthamine biosynthetic pathway. PMID:25061748

  7. Isolation, cloning and expression of a multifunctional O-methyltransferase capable of forming 2,5-dimethyl-4-methoxy-3(2H)-furanone, one of the key aroma compounds in strawberry fruits.

    PubMed

    Wein, Martina; Lavid, Noa; Lunkenbein, Stefan; Lewinsohn, Efraim; Schwab, Wilfried; Kaldenhoff, Ralf

    2002-09-01

    Strawberry fruits contain an uncommon group of key aroma compounds with a 2,5-dimethyl-3(2H)-furanone structure. Here, we report on the methylation of 2,5-dimethyl-4-hydroxy-3(2H)-furanone (DMHF) to 2,5-dimethyl-4-methoxy-3(2H)-furanone (DMMF) by a S-adenosyl-L-methionine dependent O-methyltransferase, the cloning of the corresponding cDNA and characterization of the encoded protein. Northern-hybridization indicated that the Strawberry-OMT specific transcripts accumulated during ripening in strawberry fruits and were absent in root, petiole, leaf and flower. The protein was functionally expressed in E. coli and exhibited a substrate specificity for catechol, caffeic acid, protocatechuic aldehyde, caffeoyl CoA and DMHF. A common structural feature of the accepted substrates was a o-diphenolic structure also present in DMHF in its dienolic tautomer. FaOMT is active as a homodimer and the native enzyme shows optimum activity at pH 8.5 and 37 degrees C. It does not require a cofactor for enzymatic activity. Due to the expression pattern of FaOMT and the enzymatic activity in the different stages of fruit ripening we suppose that FaOMT is involved in lignification of the achenes and the vascular bundles in the expanding fruit. In addition, it is concluded that the Strawberry-OMT plays an important role in the biosynthesis of strawberry volatiles such as vanillin and DMMF. PMID:12220266

  8. Genetic polymorphisms of estrogen receptor alpha and catechol-O-methyltransferase genes in Turkish patients with familial prostate carcinoma

    PubMed Central

    Pazarbasi, Ayfer; Yilmaz, M. Bertan; Alptekin, Davut; Luleyap, Umit; Tansug, Zuhtu; Ozpak, Lutfiye; Izmirli, Muzeyyen; Onatoglu-Arikan, Dilge; Kocaturk-Sel, Sabriye; Erkoc, Mehmet Ali; Turgut, Ozgur; Bereketoglu, Ceyhun; Tunc, Erdal; Akbal, Eylul

    2013-01-01

    OBJECTIVES: Estrogen is one of the most crucial hormones participating in the proliferation and carcinogenesis of the prostate glands. Genetic polymorphisms in the estrogen metabolism pathway might be involved in the risk of prostate carcinoma development. We evaluated the association between genetic polymorphisms in estrogen receptor alpha (ESR1) and catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) genes and the risk of developing familial prostate carcinoma. MATERIALS AND METHODS: In this study, 34 cases with prostate carcinoma whose first-degree relatives had prostate carcinoma and 30 healthy age-matched male controls were enrolled. The genotypes of ESR1 and COMT genes were analyzed employing polymerase chain reaction-restriction fragment length polymorphism method. 34 cases with prostate carcinoma, whose first degree relatives had prostate carcinoma and 14 age-matched male controls were enrolled to analyze the genotype of these two genes. RESULTS: Among control patients, the ESR1 PvuII genotypes of C/C, C/T and T/T were observed in 37%, 26% and 37%, respectively, whereas the C/C, C/T and T/T genotypes were observed in 18%, 41% and 41% of case patients, respectively. Among controls, the ESR1 PvuII allele frequencies of C and T were equally observed, whereas the C and T allele frequencies were observed in 38% and 62% of patients, respectively. Among ESR1 PvuII genotypes there were not any significant difference in terms of genotype (P = 0.199) and allele (P = 0.181) frequencies. Among controls, the ESR1 XbaI genotypes of G/G, G/A and A/A were observed in 33%, 37% and 33%, respectively, whereas the G/G, G/A and A/A genotypes were observed in 12%, 47% and 41% of patients, respectively. Among controls, the ESR1 XbaI allele frequencies of A and G were observed equally, respectively, whereas the A and G frequencies were observed in 65% and 35% of patients, respectively. Among ESR1 Χ baI, there was not any significant difference in terms of genotype (P = 0.111) and allele (P = 0

  9. The Flexible Mind Is Associated with the Catechol-O-Methyltransferase (COMT) Val[superscript 158]Met Polymorphism: Evidence for a Role of Dopamine in the Control of Task-Switching

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Colzato, Lorenza S.; Waszak, Florian; Nieuwenhuis, Sander; Posthuma, Danielle; Hommel, Bernhard

    2010-01-01

    Genetic variability related to the catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) gene Val[superscript 128]Met polymorphism) has received increasing attention as a possible modulator of cognitive control functions. Recent evidence suggests that the Val[superscript 128]Met genotype may differentially affect cognitive stability and flexibility, in such a way…

  10. Association of the Catechol O-Methyltransferase Val158-Met Polymorphism and Reduced Interference Control in Korean Children with Attention-Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder

    PubMed Central

    Park, Subin; Park, Jong-Eun; Yoo, Hee Jeong; Kim, Jae-Won; Cheong, Jae Hoon; Han, Doug Hyun; Kim, Yeni

    2015-01-01

    Objective We tested for association of the catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) Val158-Met (rs4680) polymorphism with attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) using family-based test in Korean trios. Methods A total of 181 subjects with ADHD along with both of their biological parents were recruited from University Hospitals in Korea. We performed a transmission disequilibrium test (TDT) on 181 trios. Results In the TDT, we found the over-transmission of the Val allele in children with ADHD (χ2=4.21, p=0.040). Conclusion These results suggest that the COMT Val158-Met polymorphism is associated with ADHD among the Korean population. However, this study must be replicated in larger populations. PMID:26508970

  11. The Role of the Catechol-o-methyltransferase (COMT) Gene Val158Met in Aggressive Behavior, A Review of Genetic Studies

    PubMed Central

    Qayyum, Arqam; Zai, Clement C.; Hirata, Yuko; Tiwari, Arun K.; Cheema, Sheraz; Nowrouzi, Behdin; Beitchman, Joseph H.; Kennedy, James L.

    2015-01-01

    Aggressive behaviors have become a major public health problem, and early-onset aggression can lead to outcomes such as substance abuse, antisocial personality disorder among other issues. In recent years, there has been an increase in research in the molecular and genetic underpinnings of aggressive behavior, and one of the candidate genes codes for the catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT). COMT is involved in catabolizing catecholamines such as dopamine. These neurotransmitters appear to be involved in regulating mood which can contribute to aggression. The most common gene variant studied in the COMT gene is the Valine (Val) to Methionine (Met) substitution at codon 158. We will be reviewing the current literature on this gene variant in aggressive behavior. PMID:26630958

  12. O-Methyltransferase is shared between the pentose phosphate and shikimate pathways and is essential for mycosporine-like amino acid biosynthesis in Anabaena variabilis ATCC 29413.

    PubMed

    Pope, Matthew A; Spence, Edward; Seralvo, Valentina; Gacesa, Ranko; Heidelberger, Sibylle; Weston, Andrew J; Dunlap, Walter C; Shick, J Malcolm; Long, Paul F

    2015-01-19

    The parent core structure of mycosporine-like amino acids (MAAs) is 4-deoxygadusol, which, in cyanobacteria, is derived from conversion of the pentose phosphate pathway intermediate sedoheptulose 7-phosphate by the enzymes 2-epi-5-epivaliolone synthase (EVS) and O-methyltransferase (OMT). Yet, deletion of the EVS gene from Anabaena variabilis ATCC 29413 was shown to have little effect on MAA production, thus suggesting that its biosynthesis is not exclusive to the pentose phosphate pathway. Herein, we report how, using pathway-specific inhibitors, we demonstrated unequivocally that MAA biosynthesis occurs also via the shikimate pathway. In addition, complete in-frame gene deletion of the OMT gene from A. variabilis ATCC 29413 reveals that, although biochemically distinct, the pentose phosphate and shikimate pathways are inextricably linked to MAA biosynthesis in this cyanobacterium. Furthermore, proteomic data reveal that the shikimate pathway is the predominate route for UV-induced MAA biosynthesis. PMID:25487723

  13. Radiometric assay for phenylethanolamine N-methyltransferase and catechol O-methyltransferase in a single tissue sample: application to rat hypothalamic nuclei, pineal gland, and heart

    SciTech Connect

    Culman, J.; Torda, T.; Weise, V.K.

    1987-08-01

    A simple and highly sensitive method for simultaneous assay of phenylethanolamine N-methyltransferase (PNMT) and catechol O-methyltransferase (COMT) is described. These enzymes are determined in a single tissue homogenate using S-(methyl-/sup 3/H) adenosyl-L-methionine as methyl donor and sequentially incubating with the substrates phenylethanolamine and epinephrine. The radioactive products of the enzymatic reactions, N-methylphenylethanolamine and metanephrine, are extracted and then separated by thin-layer chromatography. The identity of the reaction products has been established chromatographically and the conditions for both enzymatic reactions in the assay procedure have been defined. Measurement of PNMT activity in the rat pineal gland or in minute fragments of other tissues (e.g., brain nuclei) has not been possible using previously described methods. Activities of PNMT and COMT in the rat pineal gland, various hypothalamic nuclei, and the auricular and ventricular myocardia are herein reported.

  14. Systematic analysis of O-methyltransferase gene family and identification of potential members involved in the formation of O-methylated flavonoids in Citrus.

    PubMed

    Liu, Xiaogang; Luo, Yan; Wu, Hongkun; Xi, Wanpeng; Yu, Jie; Zhang, Qiuyun; Zhou, Zhiqin

    2016-01-10

    The O-methylation of various secondary metabolites is mainly catalyzed by S-adenosyl-l-methionine (SAM)-dependent O-methyltransferase (OMT) proteins that are encoded by the O-methyltransferase gene family. Citrus fruits are a rich source of O-methylated flavonoids that have a broad spectrum of biological activities, including anti-inflammatory, anticarcinogenic, and antiatherogenic properties. However, little is known about this gene family and its members that are involved in the O-methylation of flavonoids and their regulation in Citrus. In this study, 58 OMT genes were identified from the entire Citrus sinensis genome and compared with those from 3 other representative dicot plants. A comprehensive analysis was performed, including functional/substrate predictions, identification of chromosomal locations, phylogenetic relationships, gene structures, and conserved motifs. Distribution mapping revealed that the 58 OMT genes were unevenly distributed on the 9 citrus chromosomes. Phylogenetic analysis of 164 OMT proteins from C.sinensis, Arabidopsis thaliana, Populus trichocarpa, and Vitis vinifera showed that these proteins were categorized into group I (COMT subfamily) and group II (CCoAOMT subfamily), which were further divided into 10 and 2 subgroups, respectively. Finally, digital gene expression and quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction analyses revealed that citrus OMT genes had distinct temporal and spatial expression patterns in different tissues and developmental stages. Interestingly, 18 and 11 of the 27 genes predicted to be involved in O-methylation of flavonoids had higher expression in the peel and pulp during fruit development, respectively. The citrus OMT gene family identified in this study might help in the selection of appropriate candidate genes and facilitate functional studies in Citrus. PMID:26407870

  15. The Catechol-O-Methyltransferase Val158Met Polymorphism Contributes to the Risk of Breast Cancer in the Chinese Population: An Updated Meta-Analysis

    PubMed Central

    Wan, Guo-Xing; Cao, Yu-Wen; Li, Wen-Qin; Li, Yu-Cong; Li, Feng

    2014-01-01

    Purpose Catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) enzyme plays a central role in estrogen-induced carcinogenesis. Emerging evidence from association studies has revealed that the functional Val158Met polymorphism (rs4680 G>A) of the Catechol-O-methyltransferase gene (COMT) has been implicated in susceptibility to breast cancer in the Chinese population, while results of individual published studies remain inconclusive and inconsistent. To assess this association in the Chinese population, a meta-analysis was performed. Methods Eligible studies were searched on MEDLINE, Embase, Cochrane Library, China National Knowledge Infrastructure, and the Chinese Biomedicine Database. Odds ratios (ORs) with their corresponding 95% confidence intervals (CIs) were pooled to assess the association between COMT polymorphisms and the risk of breast cancer using RevMan 5.2 and Stata 12.0 software. Results The meta-analysis included 14 eligible studies, with a total of 4,626 breast cancer cases and 5,637 controls. Overall, the COMT Val158Met polymorphism (rs4680 G>A) was significantly associated with an increased risk of breast cancer in several genetic models (A/A vs. G/G: OR, 1.59, 95% CI, 1.12-2.27; A/A vs. G/A+G/G: OR, 1.62, 95% CI, 1.14-2.29; A vs. G: OR, 1.15, 95% CI, 1.00-1.32), and a subgroup analysis according to menopausal status showed that this association was especially evident among premenopausal Chinese women (A/A vs. G/G: OR, 1.87, 95% CI, 0.99-3.54; A/A vs. G/A+G/G: OR, 1.94, 95% CI, 1.03-3.63). Conclusion The results of this meta-analysis indicated that COMT Val158Met variants contribute to breast cancer susceptibility in the Chinese population, particularly among premenopausal women. PMID:25013436

  16. Pederin-type pathways of uncultivated bacterial symbionts: analysis of o-methyltransferases and generation of a biosynthetic hybrid.

    PubMed

    Zimmermann, Katrin; Engeser, Marianne; Blunt, John W; Munro, Murray H G; Piel, Jörn

    2009-03-01

    The complex polyketide pederin is a potent antitumor agent isolated from Paederus spp. rove beetles. We have previously isolated a set of genes from a bacterial endosymbiont that are good candidates for pederin biosynthesis. To biochemically study this pathway, we expressed three methyltransferases from the putative pederin pathway and used the partially unmethylated analogue mycalamide A from the marine sponge Mycale hentscheli as test substrate. Analysis by high-resolution MS/MS and NMR revealed that PedO regiospecifically methylates the marine compound to generate the nonnatural hybrid compound 18-O-methylmycalamide A with increased cytotoxicity. To our knowledge, this is the first biochemical evidence that invertebrates can obtain defensive complex polyketides from bacterial symbionts. PMID:19206228

  17. Molecular basis of substrate promiscuity for the SAM-dependent O-methyltransferase NcsB1, involved in the biosynthesis of the enediyne antitumor antibiotic neocarzinostatin.

    PubMed

    Cooke, Heather A; Guenther, Elizabeth L; Luo, Yinggang; Shen, Ben; Bruner, Steven D

    2009-10-13

    The small molecule component of chromoprotein enediyne antitumor antibiotics is biosynthesized through a convergent route, incorporating amino acid, polyketide, and carbohydrate building blocks around a central enediyne hydrocarbon core. The naphthoic acid moiety of the enediyne neocarzinostatin plays key roles in the biological activity of the natural product by interacting with both the carrier protein and duplex DNA at the site of action. We have previously described the in vitro characterization of an S-adenosylmethionine-dependent O-methyltransferase (NcsB1) in the neocarzinostatin biosynthetic pathway [Luo, Y., Lin, S., Zhang, J., Cooke, H. A., Bruner, S. D., and Shen, B. (2008) J. Biol. Chem. 283, 14694-14702]. Here we provide a structural basis for NcsB1 activity, illustrating that the enzyme shares an overall architecture with a large family of S-adenosylmethionine-dependent proteins. In addition, NcsB1 represents the first enzyme to be structurally characterized in the biosynthetic pathway of neocarzinostatin. By cocrystallizing the enzyme with various combinations of the cofactor and substrate analogues, details of the active site structure have been established. Changes in subdomain orientation were observed via comparison of structures in the presence and absence of substrate, suggesting that reorientation of the enzyme is involved in binding of the substrate. In addition, residues important for substrate discrimination were predicted and probed through site-directed mutagenesis and in vitro biochemical characterization. PMID:19702337

  18. Mutation in Brachypodium caffeic acid O-methyltransferase 6 alters stem and grain lignins and improves straw saccharification without deteriorating grain quality

    PubMed Central

    Ho-Yue-Kuang, Séverine; Alvarado, Camille; Antelme, Sébastien; Bouchet, Brigitte; Cézard, Laurent; Le Bris, Philippe; Legée, Frédéric; Maia-Grondard, Alessandra; Yoshinaga, Arata; Saulnier, Luc; Guillon, Fabienne; Sibout, Richard; Lapierre, Catherine; Chateigner-Boutin, Anne-Laure

    2016-01-01

    Cereal crop by-products are a promising source of renewable raw material for the production of biofuel from lignocellulose. However, their enzymatic conversion to fermentable sugars is detrimentally affected by lignins. Here the characterization of the Brachypodium Bd5139 mutant provided with a single nucleotide mutation in the caffeic acid O-methyltransferase BdCOMT6 gene is reported. This BdCOMT6-deficient mutant displayed a moderately altered lignification in mature stems. The lignin-related BdCOMT6 gene was also found to be expressed in grains, and the alterations of Bd5139 grain lignins were found to mirror nicely those evidenced in stem lignins. The Bd5139 grains displayed similar size and composition to the control. Complementation experiments carried out by introducing the mutated gene into the AtCOMT1-deficient Arabidopsis mutant demonstrated that the mutated BdCOMT6 protein was still functional. Such a moderate down-regulation of lignin-related COMT enzyme reduced the straw recalcitrance to saccharification, without compromising the vegetative or reproductive development of the plant. PMID:26433202

  19. Cloning of Arabidopsis serotonin N-acetyltransferase and its role with caffeic acid O-methyltransferase in the biosynthesis of melatonin in vitro despite their different subcellular localizations.

    PubMed

    Lee, Hyoung Yool; Byeon, Yeong; Lee, Kyungjin; Lee, Hye-Jung; Back, Kyoungwhan

    2014-11-01

    Serotonin N-acetyltransferase (SNAT) is the penultimate enzyme in melatonin biosynthesis. We cloned SNAT from Arabidopsis thaliana (AtSNAT) and functionally characterized this enzyme for the first time from dicotyledonous plants. Similar to rice SNAT, AtSNAT was found to localize to chloroplasts with peak enzyme activity at 45 °C (Km , 309 μm; Vmax , 1400 pmol/min/mg protein). AtSNAT also catalyzed 5-methoxytryptamine (5-MT) into melatonin with high catalytic activity (Km , 51 μm; Vmax , 5300 pmol/min/mg protein). In contrast, Arabidopsis caffeic acid O-methyltransferase (AtCOMT) localized to the cytoplasm. Interestingly, AtCOMT can methylate serotonin into 5-MT with low catalytic activity (Km , 3.396 mm; Vmax , 528 pmol/min/mg protein). These data suggest that serotonin can be converted into either N-acetylserotonin by SNAT or into 5-MT by COMT, after which it is metabolized into melatonin by COMT or SNAT, respectively. To support this hypothesis, serotonin was incubated in the presence of both AtSNAT and AtCOMT enzymes. In addition to melatonin production, the production of major intermediates depended on incubation temperatures; N-acetylserotonin was predominantly produced at high temperatures (45 °C), while low temperatures (37 °C) favored the production of 5-MT. Our results provide biochemical evidence for the presence of a serotonin O-methylation pathway in plant melatonin biosynthesis. PMID:25250906

  20. Production of Two Novel Methoxy-Isoflavones from Biotransformation of 8-Hydroxydaidzein by Recombinant Escherichia coli Expressing O-Methyltransferase SpOMT2884 from Streptomyces peucetius.

    PubMed

    Chiang, Chien-Min; Ding, Hsiou-Yu; Tsai, Ya-Ting; Chang, Te-Sheng

    2015-01-01

    Biotransformation of 8-hydroxydaidzein by recombinant Escherichia coli expressing O-methyltransferase (OMT) SpOMT2884 from Streptomyces peucetius was investigated. Two metabolites were isolated and identified as 7,4'-dihydroxy-8-methoxy-isoflavone (1) and 8,4'-dihydroxy-7-methoxy-isoflavone (2), based on mass, 1H-nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) and 13C-NMR spectrophotometric analysis. The maximum production yields of compound (1) and (2) in a 5-L fermenter were 9.3 mg/L and 6.0 mg/L, respectively. The two methoxy-isoflavones showed dose-dependent inhibitory effects on melanogenesis in cultured B16 melanoma cells under non-toxic conditions. Among the effects, compound (1) decreased melanogenesis to 63.5% of the control at 25 μM. This is the first report on the 8-O-methylation activity of OMT toward isoflavones. In addition, the present study also first identified compound (1) with potent melanogenesis inhibitory activity. PMID:26610478

  1. Production of Two Novel Methoxy-Isoflavones from Biotransformation of 8-Hydroxydaidzein by Recombinant Escherichia coli Expressing O-Methyltransferase SpOMT2884 from Streptomyces peucetius

    PubMed Central

    Chiang, Chien-Min; Ding, Hsiou-Yu; Tsai, Ya-Ting; Chang, Te-Sheng

    2015-01-01

    Biotransformation of 8-hydroxydaidzein by recombinant Escherichia coli expressing O-methyltransferase (OMT) SpOMT2884 from Streptomyces peucetius was investigated. Two metabolites were isolated and identified as 7,4′-dihydroxy-8-methoxy-isoflavone (1) and 8,4′-dihydroxy-7-methoxy-isoflavone (2), based on mass, 1H-nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) and 13C-NMR spectrophotometric analysis. The maximum production yields of compound (1) and (2) in a 5-L fermenter were 9.3 mg/L and 6.0 mg/L, respectively. The two methoxy-isoflavones showed dose-dependent inhibitory effects on melanogenesis in cultured B16 melanoma cells under non-toxic conditions. Among the effects, compound (1) decreased melanogenesis to 63.5% of the control at 25 μM. This is the first report on the 8-O-methylation activity of OMT toward isoflavones. In addition, the present study also first identified compound (1) with potent melanogenesis inhibitory activity. PMID:26610478

  2. Melatonin Synthesis: Acetylserotonin O-Methyltransferase (ASMT) Is Strongly Expressed in a Subpopulation of Pinealocytes in the Male Rat Pineal Gland.

    PubMed

    Rath, Martin F; Coon, Steven L; Amaral, Fernanda G; Weller, Joan L; Møller, Morten; Klein, David C

    2016-05-01

    The rat pineal gland has been extensively used in studies of melatonin synthesis. However, the cellular localization of melatonin synthesis in this species has not been investigated. Here we focus on the localization of melatonin synthesis using immunohistochemical methods to detect the last enzyme in melatonin synthesis, acetylserotonin O-methyltransferase (ASMT), and in situ hybridization techniques to study transcripts encoding ASMT and two other enzymes in melatonin synthesis, tryptophan hydroxylase (TPH)-1 and aralkylamine N-acetyltransferase. In sections of the rat pineal gland, marked cell-to-cell differences were found in ASMT immunostaining intensity and in the abundance of Tph1, Aanat, and Asmt transcripts. ASMT immunoreactivity was localized to the cytoplasm in pinealocytes in the parenchyma of the superficial pineal gland, and immunopositive pinealocytes were also detected in the pineal stalk and in the deep pineal gland. ASMT was found to inconsistently colocalize with S-antigen, a widely used pinealocyte marker; this colocalization was seen in cells throughout the pineal complex and also in displaced pinealocyte-like cells of the medial habenular nucleus. Inconsistent colocalization between ASMT and TPH protein was also detected in the pineal gland. ASMT protein was not detected in extraepithalamic parts of the central nervous system or in peripheral tissues. The findings in this report are of special interest because they provide reason to suspect that melatonin synthesis varies significantly among individual pinealocytes. PMID:26950199

  3. Association of codon 108/158 catechol-O-methyltransferase gene polymorphism with the psychiatric manifestations of velo-cardio-facial syndrome

    SciTech Connect

    Lachman, H.M.; Papolos, D.F.; Veit, S.

    1996-09-20

    Velo-cardio-facial-syndrome (VCFS) is a common congenital disorder associated with typical facial appearance, cleft palate, cardiac defects, and learning disabilities. The majority of patients have an interstitial deletion on chromosome 22q11. In addition to physical abnormalities, a variety of psychiatric illnesses have been reported in patients with VCFS, including schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. The psychiatric manifestations of VCFS could be due to haploinsufficiency of a gene(s) within 22q11. One candidate that has been mapped to this region is catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT). We recently identified a polymorphism in the COMT gene that leads to a valine{r_arrow}methionine substitution at amino acid 158 of the membrane-bound form of the enzyme. Homozygosity for COMT158{sup met} leads to a 3- to 4-fold reduction in enzymatic activity, compared with homozygotes for COMT158{sup met}. We now report that in a population of patients with VCFS, there is an apparent association between the low-activity allele, COMT158{sup met}, and the development of bipolar spectrum disorder, and in particular, a rapid-cycling form. 33 refs., 3 tabs.

  4. Influence of catechol-o-methyltransferase genotype (Val158Met) on endocrine, sympathetic nervous and mucosal immune systems in breast cancer survivors.

    PubMed

    Fernández-de-Las-Peñas, César; Cantarero-Villanueva, Irene; Fernández-Lao, Carolina; Ambite-Quesada, Silvia; Díaz-Rodríguez, Lourdes; Rivas-Martínez, Inés; del Moral-Avila, Rosario; Arroyo-Morales, Manuel

    2012-04-01

    Stress can play an important role in development of cancer-related fatigue (CRF) by activating the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis, the sympathetic nervous system (SNS), and altering the immune system. This study examined the influence of catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) Val158Met genotypes on salivary markers of HPA axis (cortisol), SNS (α-amylase) and immune (IgA) systems, as well as on CRF in breast cancer survivors (BCS). One-hundred BCS participated. After amplifying Val158Met COMT polymorphisms by polymerase chain reaction, three COMT genotypes were considered: Val/Val, Val/Met, Met/Met. Salivary cortisol, α-amylase activity, salivary flow rate, and IgA concentration were collected from non-stimulated saliva. CRF was assessed with the fatigue subscale of the Profile of Mood State (POMS) questionnaire. We found that BCS carrying Met/Met genotype reported higher cortisol concentration, α-amylase activity and greater CRF than those with Val/Met (P < 0.05) and Val/Val (P < 0.001) genotypes. No differences in salivary flow rate or IgA concentration (P > 0.20) were found. The results suggest that BCS carrying Met/Met genotype exhibit greater dysfunction of the HPA axis and SNS system associated with severe CRF. This study is important because it strives to understand biological factors that predispose some BCS to higher levels of CRF. PMID:21974969

  5. Concerted actions of the catechol O-methyltransferase and the cytosolic sulfotransferase SULT1A3 in the metabolism of catecholic drugs

    PubMed Central

    Kurogi, Katsuhisa; Alazizi, Adnan; Liu, Ming-Yih; Sakakibara, Yoichi; Suiko, Masahito; Sugahara, Takuya; Liu, Ming-Cheh

    2013-01-01

    Catecholic drugs had been reported to be metabolized through conjugation reactions, particularly methylation and sulfation. Whether and how these two Phase II conjugation reactions may occur in a concerted manner, however, remained unclear. The current study was designed to investigate the methylation and/or sulfation of five catecholic drugs. Analysis of the spent media of HepG2 cells metabolically labeled with [35S]sulfate in the presence of individual catecholic drugs revealed the presence of two [35S]sulfated metabolites for dopamine, epinephrine, isoproterenol, and isoetharine, but only one [35S]sulfated metabolite for apomorphine. Further analyses using tropolone, a catechol O-methyltransferase (COMT) inhibitor, indicated that one of the two [35S]sulfated metabolites of dopamine, epinephrine, isoproterenol, and isoetharine was a doubly conjugated (methylated and sulfated) product, since its level decreased proportionately with increasing concentrations of tropolone added to the labeling media. Moreover, while the inhibition of methylation resulted in a decrease of the total amount of [35S]sulfated metabolites, sulfation appeared to be capable of compensating the suppressed methylation in the metabolism of these four catecholic drugs. A two-stage enzymatic assay showed the sequential methylation and sulfation of dopamine, epinephrine, isoproterenol, and isoetharine mediated by, respectively, the COMT and the cytosolic sulfotransferase SULT1A3. Collectively, the results from the present study implied the concerted actions of the COMT and SULT1A3 in the metabolism of catecholic drugs. PMID:22917559

  6. Molecular Basis of Substrate Promiscuity for the SAM-Dependent O-Methyltransferase NcsB1, Involved in the Biosynthesis of the Enediyne Antitumor Antibiotic Neocarzinostatin

    SciTech Connect

    Cooke, H.; Guenther, E; Luo, Y; Shen, B; Bruner, S

    2009-01-01

    The small molecule component of chromoprotein enediyne antitumor antibiotics is biosynthesized through a convergent route, incorporating amino acid, polyketide, and carbohydrate building blocks around a central enediyne hydrocarbon core. The naphthoic acid moiety of the enediyne neocarzinostatin plays key roles in the biological activity of the natural product by interacting with both the carrier protein and duplex DNA at the site of action. We have previously described the in vitro characterization of an S-adenosylmethionine-dependent O-methyltransferase (NcsB1) in the neocarzinostatin biosynthetic pathway [Luo, Y., Lin, S., Zhang, J., Cooke, H. A., Bruner, S. D., and Shen, B. (2008) J. Biol. Chem. 283, 14694-14702]. Here we provide a structural basis for NcsB1 activity, illustrating that the enzyme shares an overall architecture with a large family of S-adenosylmethionine-dependent proteins. In addition, NcsB1 represents the first enzyme to be structurally characterized in the biosynthetic pathway of neocarzinostatin. By cocrystallizing the enzyme with various combinations of the cofactor and substrate analogues, details of the active site structure have been established. Changes in subdomain orientation were observed via comparison of structures in the presence and absence of substrate, suggesting that reorientation of the enzyme is involved in binding of the substrate. In addition, residues important for substrate discrimination were predicted and probed through site-directed mutagenesis and in vitro biochemical characterization.

  7. A catalytic triad--Lys-Asn-Asp--Is essential for the catalysis of the methyl transfer in plant cation-dependent O-methyltransferases.

    PubMed

    Brandt, Wolfgang; Manke, Kerstin; Vogt, Thomas

    2015-05-01

    Crystal structure data of cation-dependent catechol O-methyltransferases (COMTs) from mammals and related caffeoyl coenzyme A OMTs (CCoAOMTs) from plants have suggested operative molecular mechanisms. These include bivalent cations that facilitate deprotonation of vicinal aromatic dihydroxy systems and illustrate a conserved arrangement of hydroxyl and carboxyl ligands consistent with the requirements of a metal-activated catalytic mechanism. The general concept of metal-dependent deprotonation via a complexed aspartate is only one part of a more pronounced proton relay, as shown by semiempirical and DFT quantum mechanical calculations and experimental validations. A previously undetected catalytic triad, consisting of Lys157-Asn181-Asp228 residues is required for complete methyl transfer in case of a cation-dependent phenylpropanoid and flavonoid OMT, as described in this report. This triad appears essential for efficient methyl transfer to catechol-like hydroxyl group in phenolics. The observation is consistent with a catalytic lysine in the case of mammalian COMTs, but jettisons existing assumptions on the initial abstraction of the meta-hydroxyl proton to the metal stabilizing Asp154 (PFOMT) or comparable Asp-carboxyl groups in type of cation-dependent enzymes in plants. The triad is conserved among all characterized plant CCoAOMT-like enzymes, which are required not only for methylation of soluble phenylpropanoids like coumarins or monolignol monomers, but is also present in the similar microbial and mammalian cation-dependent enzymes which methylate a comparable set of substrates. PMID:25596806

  8. Levodopa-related cysteinyl-glycine and cysteine reduction with and without catechol-O-methyltransferase inhibition in Parkinson's disease patients.

    PubMed

    Müller, Thomas; Muhlack, Siegfried

    2014-06-01

    Oxidative stress is influenced by the thiol homeostasis, which regulates the redox milieu via glutathione. Components of glutathione metabolism are cysteine and cysteinyl-glycine. Both substrates decay following levodopa application or dopamine-related oxidative stress. Objective was to investigate the impact of an acute levodopa application with and without catechol-O-methyltransferase inhibitor on cysteine- and cysteinyl-glycine plasma levels. On two investigation days, 13 patients with Parkinson's disease took one retarded release 200-mg levodopa/50 mg carbidopa-containing tablet or one 150-mg levodopa/50-mg carbidopa/200-mg entacapone formulation under standardized conditions. Levodopa, 3-O-methyldopa, cysteine and cysteinyl-glycine were measured at baseline, 80 and 140 min following levodopa administration. Cysteine and cysteinyl-glycine similarly decreased, levodopa was nearly equal during both conditions. Entacapone lowered 3-O-methyldopa. Cysteine decay may be due to an elevated glutathione generation, which consumes cysteine. Cysteinyl-glycine decrease results from the alternative glutathione transformation to its oxidized form glutathione dissulfide after free radical scavenging. PMID:24390153

  9. Association between the Catechol-O-Methyltransferase (COMT) Val158Met Polymorphism and Alexithymia in Patients with Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder

    PubMed Central

    Koh, Min Jung; Kang, Jee In; Namkoong, Kee; Lee, Su Young

    2016-01-01

    Purpose Alexithymia, defined as a deficit in the ability to recognize and describe one's own feelings, may be related to the development and maintenance of obsessive-compulsive symptoms. The aim of this study was to evaluate the association between the catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) Val158Met polymorphism and alexithymia in patients with obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). Materials and Methods We recruited 244 patients with OCD (169 males, 75 females). Alexithymia was assessed using the 20-item Toronto Alexithymia Scale (TAS-20), and genotyping of the COMT Val158Met polymorphism was evaluated. Results Patients with the COMT Val/Val genotype had significantly higher total and "difficulty identifying feelings" (DIF) subdimension scores than those with the Val/Met or Met/Met genotypes. Patients with the COMT Val/Val genotype had significantly higher "difficulty describing feelings" (DDF) subdimension scores than those with the COMT Val/Met genotype. However, there were no differences in the scores for the "externally oriented thinking" (EOT) subdimension among the three genotypes. Conclusion These results indicate that the high-activity Val allele of the COMT Val158Met polymorphism is associated with increased alexithymic traits in patients with OCD. The present finding suggests that alexithymia is an endophenotype of OCD that is mediated by the COMT Val158Met polymorphism. PMID:26996573

  10. Effect of 3 Single-Dose Regimens of Opicapone on Levodopa Pharmacokinetics, Catechol-O-Methyltransferase Activity and Motor Response in Patients With Parkinson Disease.

    PubMed

    Rocha, José-Francisco; Ferreira, Joaquim J; Falcão, Amílcar; Santos, Ana; Pinto, Roberto; Nunes, Teresa; Almeida, Luis; Soares-da-Silva, Patrício

    2016-05-01

    This study determined the effects of single doses of opicapone (OPC), a novel third-generation catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) inhibitor, on levodopa and 3-O-methyl-levodopa (3-OMD) pharmacokinetics (PK), COMT activity and motor fluctuations in patients with Parkinson disease (PD). Subjects received, in a double-blind manner, 25, 50, and 100 mg OPC or placebo (PLC) in 4 separate treatment periods. The washout period between doses was at least 10 days. During each period, the OPC/PLC capsules were to be coadministered with the morning dose of 100/25 mg levodopa/carbidopa (LC) or levodopa/benserazide (LB) on day 3. In relation to PLC, levodopa exposure increased 3.7%, 16.4%, and 34.8% following 25, 50, or 100 mg OPC, respectively. Maximum S-COMT inhibition (Emax ) ranged from 67.8% (25 mg OPC) to 100% (100 mg OPC). Peak and extent of S-COMT inhibition were dose-dependent. Maximum decrease in the plasma 3-OMD was observed following administration of 100 mg OPC. Opicapone administered concomitantly with standard-release 100/25 mg LC or LB improved motor performance. Treatments were generally well tolerated and safe. It was concluded that OPC is a new COMT inhibitor that significantly decreased COMT activity and increased systemic exposure to levodopa in PD patients with motor fluctuations. PMID:27163503

  11. Association of catechol-O-methyltransferase Val(108/158) Met genetic polymorphism with schizophrenia, P50 sensory gating, and negative symptoms in a Chinese population.

    PubMed

    Mao, Qiao; Tan, Yun-Long; Luo, Xing-Guang; Tian, Li; Wang, Zhi-Ren; Tan, Shu-Ping; Chen, Song; Yang, Gui-Gang; An, Hui-Mei; Yang, Fu-De; Zhang, Xiang-Yang

    2016-08-30

    Catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT), an enzyme involved in the degradation and inactivation of the neurotransmitter dopamine, is associated with the sensory gating phenomenon, protecting the cerebral cortex from information overload. The COMT Val(108/158)Met polymorphism is essential for prefrontal cortex processing capacity and efficiency. The current study was designed to investigate the role of COMT Val(108/158)Met polymorphism in development, sensory gating deficit, and symptoms of schizophrenia in Han Chinese population. P50 gating was determined in 139 schizophrenic patients and 165 healthy controls. Positive and Negative Syndrome Scale (PANSS) was used to assess the clinical symptomatology in 370 schizophrenic subjects. COMT Val(108/158)Met polymorphism was genotyped by PCR-restriction fragment length polymorphism (PCR-RFLP). No significant differences in COMT allele and genotype distributions were observed between schizophrenic patients and control groups. Although P50 deficits were present in patients, there was no evidence for an association between COMT Val(108/158)Met polymorphism and the P50 biomarker. Moreover, PANSS negative subscore was significantly higher in Val allele carriers than in Met/Met individuals. The present findings suggest that COMT Val(108/158)Met polymorphism may not contribute to the risk of schizophrenia and to the P50 deficits, but may contribute to the negative symptoms of schizophrenia among Han Chinese. PMID:27315458

  12. Crystal Structure and Functional Analysis of the SARS-Coronavirus RNA Cap 2′-O-Methyltransferase nsp10/nsp16 Complex

    PubMed Central

    Decroly, Etienne; Debarnot, Claire; Ferron, François; Bouvet, Mickael; Coutard, Bruno; Imbert, Isabelle; Gluais, Laure; Papageorgiou, Nicolas; Sharff, Andrew; Bricogne, Gérard; Ortiz-Lombardia, Miguel; Lescar, Julien; Canard, Bruno

    2011-01-01

    Cellular and viral S-adenosylmethionine-dependent methyltransferases are involved in many regulated processes such as metabolism, detoxification, signal transduction, chromatin remodeling, nucleic acid processing, and mRNA capping. The Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome coronavirus nsp16 protein is a S-adenosylmethionine-dependent (nucleoside-2′-O)-methyltransferase only active in the presence of its activating partner nsp10. We report the nsp10/nsp16 complex structure at 2.0 Å resolution, which shows nsp10 bound to nsp16 through a ∼930 Å2 surface area in nsp10. Functional assays identify key residues involved in nsp10/nsp16 association, and in RNA binding or catalysis, the latter likely through a SN2-like mechanism. We present two other crystal structures, the inhibitor Sinefungin bound in the S-adenosylmethionine binding pocket and the tighter complex nsp10(Y96F)/nsp16, providing the first structural insight into the regulation of RNA capping enzymes in (+)RNA viruses. PMID:21637813

  13. Determination of Methylated CpG Sites in the Promoter Region of Catechol-O-Methyltransferase (COMT) and their Involvement in the Etiology of Tobacco Smoking.

    PubMed

    Xu, Qing; Ma, Jennie Z; Payne, Thomas J; Li, Ming D

    2010-01-01

    We previously reported that catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) is significantly associated with nicotine dependence (ND) in humans. In this study, we examined whether there exists any difference in the extent of methylation of CpG dinucleotides in the promoter region of COMT in smokers and non-smokers by analyzing the methylation status of cytosines at 33 CpG sites through direct sequencing of bisulfite-treated DNA (N = 50 per group). The cytosine was methylated at 13 of 33 CpG sites, and two of these sites showed significant differences between smokers and matched non-smoker controls. Specifically, in the -193 CpG site, the degree of methylation was 19.1% in smokers and 13.2% in non-smokers (P < 0.01). This finding was confirmed by methylation-specific PCR using an additional 100 smoker and 100 non-smoker control samples, which showed the degree of methylation to be 22.2% in smokers and 18.3% in non-smokers (P < 0.01). For the -39 CpG site, the degree of methylation was 9.2% in smokers, whereas no methylation was found in non-smoker controls. Together, our findings provide the first molecular explanation at the epigenetic level for the association of ND with methylation of the COMT promoter, implying that methylation plays a role in smoking dependence. PMID:21423427

  14. Acid detergent lignin, lodging resistance index, and expression of the caffeic acid O-methyltransferase gene in brown midrib-12 sudangrass

    PubMed Central

    Li, Yuan; Liu, Guibo; Li, Jun; You, Yongliang; Zhao, Haiming; Liang, Huan; Mao, Peisheng

    2015-01-01

    Understanding the relationship between acid detergent lignin (ADL) and lodging resistance index (LRI) is essential for breeding new varieties of brown midrib (bmr) sudangrass (Sorghum sudanense (Piper) Stapf.). In this study, bmr-12 near isogenic lines and their wild-types obtained by back cross breeding were used to compare relevant forage yield and quality traits, and to analyze expression of the caffeic acid O-methyltransferase (COMT) gene using quantitative real time-PCR. The research showed that the mean ADL content of bmr-12 mutants (20.94 g kg−1) was significantly (P < 0.05) lower than measured in N-12 lines (43.45 g kg−1), whereas the LRI of bmr-12 mutants (0.29) was significantly (P < 0.05) higher than in N-12 lines (0.22). There was no significant correlation between the two indexes in bmr-12 materials (r = −0.44, P > 0.05). Sequence comparison of the COMT gene revealed two point mutations present in bmr-12 but not in the wild-type, the second mutation changed amino acid 129 of the protein from Gln (CAG) to a stop codon (UAG). The relative expression level of COMT gene was significantly reduced, which likely led to the decreased ADL content observed in the bmr-12 mutant. PMID:26366111

  15. CbCTB2, an O-methyltransferase is essential for biosynthesis of the phytotoxin cercosporin and infection of sugar beet by Cercospora beticola

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Cercospora leaf spot disease, caused by the fungus Cercospora beticola, is the most destructive foliar disease of sugar beets (Beta vulgaris) worldwide. Cercosporin, a light-inducible toxin, is essential for necrosis of the leaf tissue and development of the typical leaf spots on sugar beet leaves. Results In this study we show that the O-methyltransferase gene CTB2 is essential for cercosporin production and pathogenicity in two C. beticola isolates. We established a transformation system for C. beticola protoplasts, disrupted CTB2, and transformed the Δctb2 strains as well as a wild type strain with the DsRed reporter gene. The Δctb2 strains had lost their pigmentation and toxin measurements demonstrated that the Δctb2 strains were defective in cercosporin production. Infection of sugar beets with the wild type and Δctb2 DsRed strains showed that the deletion strain was severely impaired in plant infection. Histological analysis revealed that the CTB2-deficient isolate cannot enter the leaf tissue through stomata like the wild type. Conclusions Taken together, these observations indicate that cercosporin has a dual function in sugar beet infection: in addition to the well-known role in tissue necrosis, the toxin is required for the early phase of sugar beet infection. PMID:23517289

  16. Investigating the Genetic Basis of Theory of Mind (ToM): The Role of Catechol-O-Methyltransferase (COMT) Gene Polymorphisms

    PubMed Central

    Xia, Haiwei; Wu, Nan; Su, Yanjie

    2012-01-01

    The ability to deduce other persons' mental states and emotions which has been termed ‘theory of mind (ToM)’ is highly heritable. First molecular genetic studies focused on some dopamine-related genes, while the genetic basis underlying different components of ToM (affective ToM and cognitive ToM) remain unknown. The current study tested 7 candidate polymorphisms (rs4680, rs4633, rs2020917, rs2239393, rs737865, rs174699 and rs59938883) on the catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) gene. We investigated how these polymorphisms relate to different components of ToM. 101 adults participated in our study; all were genetically unrelated, non-clinical and healthy Chinese subjects. Different ToM tasks were applied to detect their theory of mind ability. The results showed that the COMT gene rs2020917 and rs737865 SNPs were associated with cognitive ToM performance, while the COMT gene rs5993883 SNP was related to affective ToM, in which a significant gender-genotype interaction was found (p = 0.039). Our results highlighted the contribution of DA-related COMT gene on ToM performance. Moreover, we found out that the different SNP at the same gene relates to the discriminative aspect of ToM. Our research provides some preliminary evidence to the genetic basis of theory of mind which still awaits further studies. PMID:23209597

  17. Evaluation of Mut(S) and Mut⁺ Pichia pastoris strains for membrane-bound catechol-O-methyltransferase biosynthesis.

    PubMed

    Pedro, A Q; Oppolzer, D; Bonifácio, M J; Maia, C J; Queiroz, J A; Passarinha, L A

    2015-04-01

    Catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT, EC 2.1.1.6) is an enzyme that catalyzes the methylation of catechol substrates, and while structural and functional studies of its membrane-bound isoform (MBCOMT) are still hampered by low recombinant production, Pichia pastoris has been described as an attractive host for the production of correctly folded and inserted membrane proteins. Hence, in this work, MBCOMT biosynthesis was developed using P. pastoris X33 and KM71H cells in shake flasks containing a semidefined medium with different methanol concentrations. Moreover, after P. pastoris glass beads lysis, biologically and immunologically active hMBCOMT was found mainly in the solubilized membrane fraction whose kinetic parameters were identical to its correspondent native enzyme. In addition, mixed feeds of methanol and glycerol or sorbitol were also employed, and its levels quantified using liquid chromatography coupled to refractive index detection. Overall, for the first time, two P. pastoris strains with opposite phenotypes were applied for MBCOMT biosynthesis under the control of the strongly methanol-inducible alcohol oxidase (AOX) promoter. Moreover, this eukaryotic system seems to be a promising approach to deliver MBCOMT in high quantities from fermentor cultures with a lower cost-benefit due to the cheaper cultivation media coupled with the higher titers tipically achieved in biorreactors, when compared with previously reported mammallian cell cultures. PMID:25712908

  18. Structure-Function Analyses of a Caffeic Acid O-Methyltransferase from Perennial Ryegrass Reveal the Molecular Basis for Substrate Preference[W][OA

    PubMed Central

    Louie, Gordon V.; Bowman, Marianne E.; Tu, Yi; Mouradov, Aidyn; Spangenberg, German; Noel, Joseph P.

    2010-01-01

    Lignin forms from the polymerization of phenylpropanoid-derived building blocks (the monolignols), whose modification through hydroxylation and O-methylation modulates the chemical and physical properties of the lignin polymer. The enzyme caffeic acid O-methyltransferase (COMT) is central to lignin biosynthesis. It is often targeted in attempts to engineer the lignin composition of transgenic plants for improved forage digestibility, pulping efficiency, or utility in biofuel production. Despite intensive investigation, the structural determinants of the regiospecificity and substrate selectivity of COMT remain poorly defined. Reported here are x-ray crystallographic structures of perennial ryegrass (Lolium perenne) COMT (Lp OMT1) in open conformational state, apo- and holoenzyme forms and, most significantly, in a closed conformational state complexed with the products S-adenosyl-l-homocysteine and sinapaldehyde. The product-bound complex reveals the post-methyl-transfer organization of COMT’s catalytic groups with reactant molecules and the fully formed phenolic-ligand binding site. The core scaffold of the phenolic ligand forges a hydrogen-bonding network involving the 4-hydroxy group that anchors the aromatic ring and thereby permits only metahydroxyl groups to be positioned for transmethylation. While distal from the site of transmethylation, the propanoid tail substituent governs the kinetic preference of ryegrass COMT for aldehydes over alcohols and acids due to a single hydrogen bond donor for the C9 oxygenated moiety dictating the preference for an aldehyde. PMID:21177481

  19. The impact of the Catechol-O-methyltransferase Val158Met polymorphism on survival in the general population – the HUNT study

    PubMed Central

    Hagen, Knut; Stovner, Lars J; Skorpen, Frank; Pettersen, Elin; Zwart, John-Anker

    2007-01-01

    Background The catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) gene contains a functional polymorphism, Val158Met which has been related to common diseases like cancer, psychiatric illness and myocardial infarction. Whether the Val158Met polymorphism is associated with survival has not been evaluated in the general population. The aim of this prospective study was to evaluate the impact of codon 158 COMT gene polymorphism on survival in a population-based cohort. Methods The sample comprised 2979 non-diabetic individuals who participated in the Nord-Trøndelag Health Study (HUNT) in the period 1995–97. The subjects were followed up with respect to mortality throughout year 2004. Results 212 men and 183 women died during the follow up. No association between codon 158 COMT gene polymorphism and survival was found. The unadjusted relative risk of death by non-ischemic heart diseases with Met/Met or Met/Val genotypes was 3.27 (95% confidence interval, 1.19–9.00) compared to Val/Val genotype. When we adjusted for age, gender, smoking, coffee intake and body mass index the relative risk decreased to 2.89 (95% confidence interval, 1.04–8.00). Conclusion During 10 year of follow-up, the Val158Met polymorphism had no impact on survival in a general population. Difference in mortality rates from non-ischemic heart diseases may be incidental and should be evaluated in other studies. PMID:17577421

  20. Determination of catechol-O-methyltransferase activity in brain tissue by high-performance liquid chromatography with on-line radiochemical detection

    SciTech Connect

    Nissinen, E.

    1985-01-01

    A sensitive assay for catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) activity by high-performance liquid chromatography with on-line radiochemical detection was described. The method was based on the measurement of /sup 3/H- labeled 3-O- and 4-O-methylated products of the substrate, 3,4- dihydroxybenzoic acid, using S-adenosyl-L-(methyl-/sup 3/H)methionine as the methyl donor, or the measurement of /sup 14/C-labeled 3-O- and 4-O-methylated products of the substrate, (7-/sup 14/C)dopamine. The reaction products were determined from the incubation mixture after removal of protein by injecting an aliquot into the liquid chromatograph. The detection limit with counting efficiency of 40% was 0.45 pmol /sup 3/H-labeled product, and 0. 04 pmol /sup 14/C-labeled product with 61% counting efficiency. The method is suitable for assaying membrane-bound and soluble COMT activities in the brain tissue and for calculation of meta/para product ratios.

  1. Catechol-O-Methyltransferase Val158Met Polymorphism Associates with Individual Differences in Sleep Physiologic Responses to Chronic Sleep Loss

    PubMed Central

    Goel, Namni; Banks, Siobhan; Lin, Ling; Mignot, Emmanuel; Dinges, David F.

    2011-01-01

    Background The COMT Val158Met polymorphism modulates cortical dopaminergic catabolism, and predicts individual differences in prefrontal executive functioning in healthy adults and schizophrenic patients, and associates with EEG differences during sleep loss. We assessed whether the COMT Val158Met polymorphism was a novel marker in healthy adults of differential vulnerability to chronic partial sleep deprivation (PSD), a condition distinct from total sleep loss and one experienced by millions on a daily and persistent basis. Methodology/Principal Findings 20 Met/Met, 64 Val/Met, and 45 Val/Val subjects participated in a protocol of two baseline 10h time in bed (TIB) nights followed by five consecutive 4 h TIB nights. Met/Met subjects showed differentially steeper declines in non-REM EEG slow-wave energy (SWE)—the putative homeostatic marker of sleep drive—during PSD, despite comparable baseline SWE declines. Val/Val subjects showed differentially smaller increases in slow-wave sleep and smaller reductions in stage 2 sleep during PSD, and had more stage 1 sleep across nights and a shorter baseline REM sleep latency. The genotypes, however, did not differ in performance across various executive function and cognitive tasks and showed comparable increases in subjective and physiological sleepiness in response to chronic sleep loss. Met/Met genotypic and Met allelic frequencies were higher in whites than African Americans. Conclusions/Significance The COMT Val158Met polymorphism may be a genetic biomarker for predicting individual differences in sleep physiology—but not in cognitive and executive functioning—resulting from sleep loss in a healthy, racially-diverse adult population of men and women. Beyond healthy sleepers, our results may also provide insight for predicting sleep loss responses in patients with schizophrenia and other psychiatric disorders, since these groups repeatedly experience chronically-curtailed sleep and demonstrate COMT

  2. Regiospecific O-methylation of naphthoic acids catalyzed by NcsB1, an O-methyltransferase involved in the biosynthesis of the enediyne antitumor antibiotic neocarzinostatin.

    PubMed

    Luo, Yinggang; Lin, Shuangjun; Zhang, Jian; Cooke, Heather A; Bruner, Steven D; Shen, Ben

    2008-05-23

    Neocarzinostatin, a clinical anticancer drug, is the archetypal member of the chromoprotein family of enediyne antitumor antibiotics that are composed of a nonprotein chromophore and an apoprotein. The neocarzinostatin chromophore consists of a nine-membered enediyne core, a deoxyaminosugar, and a naphthoic acid moiety. We have previously cloned and sequenced the neocarzinostatin biosynthetic gene cluster and proposed that the biosynthesis of the naphthoic acid moiety and its incorporation into the neocarzinostatin chromophore are catalyzed by five enzymes NcsB, NcsB1, NcsB2, NcsB3, and NcsB4. Here we report the biochemical characterization of NcsB1, unveiling that: (i) NcsB1 is an S-adenosyl-L-methionine-dependent O-methyltransferase; (ii) NcsB1 catalyzes regiospecific methylation at the 7-hydroxy group of its native substrate, 2,7-dihydroxy-5-methyl-1-naphthoic acid; (iii) NcsB1 also recognizes other dihydroxynaphthoic acids as substrates and catalyzes regiospecific O-methylation; and (iv) the carboxylate and its ortho-hydroxy groups of the substrate appear to be crucial for NcsB1 substrate recognition and binding, and O-methylation takes place only at the free hydroxy group of these dihydroxynaphthoic acids. These findings establish that NcsB1 catalyzes the third step in the biosynthesis of the naphthoic acid moiety of the neocarzinostatin chromophore and further support the early proposal for the biosynthesis of the naphthoic acid and its incorporation into the neocarzinostatin chromophore with free naphthoic acids serving as intermediates. NcsB1 represents another opportunity that can now be exploited to produce novel neocarzinostatin analogs by engineering neocarzinostatin biosynthesis or applying directed biosynthesis strategies. PMID:18387946

  3. Determination of the Structure and Catalytic Mechanism of Sorghum bicolor Caffeic Acid O-Methyltransferase and the Structural Impact of Three brown midrib12 Mutations.

    PubMed

    Green, Abigail R; Lewis, Kevin M; Barr, John T; Jones, Jeffrey P; Lu, Fachuang; Ralph, John; Vermerris, Wilfred; Sattler, Scott E; Kang, ChulHee

    2014-06-19

    Using S-adenosyl-methionine as the methyl donor, caffeic acid O-methyltransferase from sorghum (Sorghum bicolor; SbCOMT) methylates the 5-hydroxyl group of its preferred substrate, 5-hydroxyconiferaldehyde. In order to determine the mechanism of SbCOMT and understand the observed reduction in the lignin syringyl-to-guaiacyl ratio of three brown midrib12 mutants that carry COMT gene missense mutations, we determined the apo-form and S-adenosyl-methionine binary complex SbCOMT crystal structures and established the ternary complex structure with 5-hydroxyconiferaldehyde by molecular modeling. These structures revealed many features shared with monocot ryegrass (Lolium perenne) and dicot alfalfa (Medicago sativa) COMTs. SbCOMT steady-state kinetic and calorimetric data suggest a random bi-bi mechanism. Based on our structural, kinetic, and thermodynamic results, we propose that the observed reactivity hierarchy among 4,5-dihydroxy-3-methoxycinnamyl (and 3,4-dihydroxycinnamyl) aldehyde, alcohol, and acid substrates arises from the ability of the aldehyde to stabilize the anionic intermediate that results from deprotonation of the 5-hydroxyl group by histidine-267. Additionally, despite the presence of other phenylpropanoid substrates in vivo, sinapaldehyde is the preferential product, as demonstrated by its low Km for 5-hydroxyconiferaldehyde. Unlike its acid and alcohol substrates, the aldehydes exhibit product inhibition, and we propose that this is due to nonproductive binding of the S-cis-form of the aldehydes inhibiting productive binding of the S-trans-form. The S-cis-aldehydes most likely act only as inhibitors, because the high rotational energy barrier around the 2-propenyl bond prevents S-trans-conversion, unlike alcohol substrates, whose low 2-propenyl bond rotational energy barrier enables rapid S-cis/S-trans-interconversion. PMID:24948836

  4. Effect of catechol-O-methyltransferase-val158met-polymorphism on the automatization of motor skills - a post hoc view on an experimental data.

    PubMed

    Krause, Daniel; Beck, Frieder; Agethen, Manfred; Blischke, Klaus

    2014-06-01

    The purpose of this study was to evaluate if the catechol-O-methyltransferase-val158met (COMT)-polymorphism, which is known to affect prefrontal dopaminergic metabolism, affects the automatization of motor skills. Twenty-two participants volunteered for gene analysis after they had participated in experiments in which they practiced a single-joint arm movement sequence 460-760 times under different feedback conditions. Motor automaticity was assessed in a pre-test and a post-test according to the dual-task paradigm, which incorporated a visuo-spatial secondary task. To account for the different practice conditions in the four original studies, dual-task cost reduction was assessed using single case effect sizes proportioned to the respective group mean. For the secondary task but not for the prioritized motor task, these relative single case effect sizes proved to be positively (and significantly) correlated with the number of met-alleles on the COMT-genotype, rs=.553; p=.004. Thus, the number of met-alleles indicated a tendency toward enhanced motor automatization. Thus, due to an increased prefrontal dopamine level, met-carriers may be able to develop a well formed and stable, spatially coded movement representation early in practice, thereby supporting the formation of a representation in motor coordinates in the course of extended practice, which later enables automatic movement execution. This process might also be enhanced by a prevalence of met-carriers to functionally evaluate positive feedback information (i.e., rewards) and to better maintain recent reward information in active working memory. PMID:24607512

  5. Effect of Catechol-O-methyltransferase-gene (COMT) Variants on Experimental and Acute Postoperative Pain in 1,000 Women undergoing Surgery for Breast Cancer

    PubMed Central

    Kambur, Oleg; Kaunisto, Mari A.; Tikkanen, Emmi; Leal, Suzanne M.; Ripatti, Samuli; Kalso, Eija A.

    2016-01-01

    Background Catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) metabolizes catecholamines in different tissues. Polymorphisms in COMT gene can attenuate COMT activity and increase sensitivity to pain. Human studies exploring the effect of COMT polymorphisms on pain sensitivity have mostly included small, heterogeneous samples and have ignored several important single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs). This study examines the effect of COMT polymorphisms on experimental and postoperative pain phenotypes in a large ethnically homogeneous female patient cohort. Methods Intensity of cold (+2–4°C) and heat (+48°C) pain and tolerance to cold pain were assessed in 1,000 patients scheduled for breast cancer surgery. Acute postoperative pain and oxycodone requirements were recorded. Twenty-two COMT SNPs were genotyped and their association with six pain phenotypes analyzed with linear regression. Results There was no association between any of the tested pain phenotypes and SNP rs4680. The strongest association signals were seen between rs165774 and heat pain intensity as well as rs887200 and cold pain intensity. In both cases, minor allele carriers reported less pain. Neither of these results remained significant after strict multiple testing corrections. When analyzed further, the effect of rs887200 was, however, shown to be significant and consistent throughout the cold pressure test. No evidence of association between the SNPs and postoperative oxycodone consumption was found. Conclusions SNPs rs887200 and rs165774 located in the untranslated regions of the gene had the strongest effects on pain sensitivity. Their effect on pain is described here for the first time. These results should be confirmed in further studies and the potential functional mechanisms of the variants studied. PMID:24343288

  6. Interactions between genetic polymorphism of cytochrome P450-1B1, sulfotransferase 1A1, catechol-o-methyltransferase and tobacco exposure in breast cancer risk.

    PubMed

    Saintot, Monique; Malaveille, Christian; Hautefeuille, Agnès; Gerber, Mariette

    2003-11-20

    Genetic polymorphisms of enzymes involved in the metabolism of xenobiotics and estrogens might play a role in breast carcinogenesis related to environmental exposures. In a case-only study on 282 women with breast cancer, we studied the interaction effects (ORi) between smoking habits and the gene polymorphisms of Cytochrome P450 1B1 (Val432Leu CYP1B1), Phenol-sulfotransferase 1A1 (Arg213His SULT1A1) and Catechol-O-methyltransferase (Val158Met COMT). The smokers carrying the Val CYP1B1 allele associated with a high hydroxylation activity had a higher risk of breast cancer than never smokers with the Leu/Leu genotype (ORi=2.32, 95%CI: 1.00-5.38). Also, the smokers carrying the His SULT1A1 allele associated with a low sulfation activity had a 2-fold excess risk compared to never smokers carrying Arg/Arg SULT1A1 common genotype (ORi= 2.55, 95%CI: 1.21-5.36). The His SULT1A1 allele increased the risk only in premenopausal patients. The Met COMT allele with a lower methylation activity than Val COMT did not modify the risk among smokers. The excess risk due to joint effect could result from a higher exposure to activated tobacco-compounds for women homo/heterozygous for the Val CYP1B1 allele. Also, a lower sulfation of the tobacco carcinogens among women with His SULT1A1 could increase exposure to genotoxic compounds. Alternatively, the Val CYP1B1 or His SULT1A1 allele with modified ability to metabolize estrogens could increase the level of genotoxic catechol estrogen (i.e., 4-hydroxy-estradiol) among smokers. Our study showed that gene polymorphisms of CYP1B1 and SULT1A1 induce an individual susceptibility to breast cancer among current smokers. PMID:14520706

  7. Importance of membrane-bound catechol-O-methyltransferase in L-DOPA metabolism: a pharmacokinetic study in two types of Comt gene modified mice

    PubMed Central

    Käenmäki, M; Tammimäki, A; Garcia-Horsman, JA; Myöhänen, T; Schendzielorz, N; Karayiorgou, M; Gogos, JA; Männistö, PT

    2009-01-01

    Background and purpose: Catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) metabolizes compounds containing catechol structures and has two forms: soluble (S-COMT) and membrane-bound (MB-COMT). Here we report the generation of a mouse line that expresses MB-COMT but not S-COMT. We compared the effects of deleting S-COMT only or both COMT forms on the pharmacokinetics of oral L-DOPA. Experimental approach: L-DOPA (10 mg·kg−1) and carbidopa (30 mg·kg−1) were given to mice by gastric tube, and samples were taken at various times. HPLC was used to measure L-DOPA in plasma and tissue samples, and dopamine and its metabolites in brain. Immunohistochemistry and Western blotting were used to characterize the distribution of COMT protein isoforms. Key results: Lack of S-COMT did not affect the levels of L-DOPA in plasma or peripheral tissues, whereas in the full COMT-knock-out mice, these levels were increased. The levels of 3-O-methyldopa were significantly decreased in the S-COMT-deficient mice. In the brain, L-DOPA levels were not significantly increased, and dopamine was increased only in females. The total COMT activity in the S-COMT-deficient mice was 22–47% of that in the wild-type mice. In peripheral tissues, female mice had lower COMT activity than the males. Conclusions and implications: In S-COMT-deficient mice, MB-COMT in the liver and the duodenum is able to O-methylate about one-half of exogenous L-DOPA. Sexual dimorphism and activity of the two COMT isoforms seems to be tissue specific and more prominent in peripheral tissues than in the brain. PMID:19930170

  8. Catechol-O-methyltransferase inhibition protects against 3,4-dihydroxyphenylalanine (DOPA) toxicity in primary mesencephalic cultures: new insights into levodopa toxicity.

    PubMed

    Blessing, Heike; Bareiss, Markus; Zettlmeisl, Heinz; Schwarz, Johannes; Storch, Alexander

    2003-01-01

    Inhibition of catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) has protective effects on levodopa (L-DOPA), but not D-DOPA toxicity towards dopamine (DA) neurons in rat primary mesencephalic cultures [Mol. Pharmacol. 57 (2000) 589]. Here, we extend our recent studies to elucidate the mechanisms of these protective effects. Thus, we investigated the effects of all main L-DOPA/DA metabolites on survival of tyrosine hydroxylase immunoreactive (THir) neurons in primary rat mesencephalic cultures. 3-O-Methyldopa, homovanillic acid, dihydroxyphenyl acetate and 3-methoxytyramine had no effects at concentrations up to 300 micro M after 24h, whereas DA was more toxic than L-DOPA with toxicity at concentrations of >or=1 micro M. The coenzyme of COMT, S-adenosyl-L-methionine (SAM), and its demethylated product S-adenosylhomocystein caused no relevant alteration of THir neuron survival or L-DOPA toxicity. In contrast, inhibition of SAM synthesis by selenomethionine showed time- and dose-dependent increase of THir neuron survival, but did not affect L-DOPA toxicity. L-DOPA-induced lipid peroxidation in mesencephalic cultures was not modified by the COMT inhibitor Ro 41-0960 (1 micro M). Increased contamination of the cultures with glial cells attenuated L- and D-DOPA toxicity, but caused significant enhancement of protection by COMT inhibitors against L-DOPA toxicity only. Investigations of L-DOPA uptake in rat striatal cultures using HPLC revealed a significant reduction of extracellular L-DOPA concentrations by Ro 41-0960. Our data confirm that L-DOPA toxicity towards DA neurons is mediated by an autooxidative process, which is attenuated by glial cells. In addition, we demonstrate a second mechanism of L-DOPA toxicity in vitro mediated by a COMT- and glia-dependent pathway, which is blocked by COMT inhibitors, most likely due to enhanced glial uptake of L-DOPA. PMID:12421594

  9. Perinatal Risk Factors Interacting With Catechol O-Methyltransferase and the Serotonin Transporter Gene Predict ASD symptoms in Children With ADHD

    PubMed Central

    Nijmeijer, Judith S.; Hartman, Catharina A.; Rommelse, Nanda N.J.; Altink, Marieke E.; Buschgens, Cathelijne J.M.; Fliers, Ellen A.; Franke, Barbara; Minderaa, Ruud B.; Ormel, Johan; Sergeant, Joseph A.; Verhulst, Frank C.; Buitelaar, Jan K.; Hoekstra, Pieter J.

    2010-01-01

    Background Symptoms of Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) and Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) often co-occur. Given the previously found familiality of ASD symptoms in children with ADHD, addressing these symptoms may be useful for genetic association studies, especially for candidate gene findings that have not been consistently replicated for ADHD. Methods We studied the association of the catechol o-methyltransferase (COMT) Val158Met polymorphism and the serotonin transporter (SLC6A4/SERT/5-HTT) 5-HTTLPR insertion/deletion polymorphism with ASD symptoms in children with ADHD, and whether these polymorphisms would interact with pre- and perinatal risk factors, i.e., maternal smoking during pregnancy and low birth weight. Analyses were performed using linear regression in 207 Dutch participants with combined type ADHD of the International Multicenter ADHD Genetics (IMAGE) study, and repeated in an independent ADHD sample (n = 439) selected from the TRracking Adolescents' Individual Lives Survey (TRAILS). Dependent variables were the total and subscale scores of the Children's Social Behavior Questionnaire (CSBQ). Results No significant main effects of COMT Val158Met, 5-HTTLPR, maternal smoking during pregnancy and low birth weight on ASD symptoms were found. However, the COMT Val/Val genotype interacted with maternal smoking during pregnancy in increasing stereotyped behavior in the IMAGE sample (p = 0.008); this interaction reached significance in the TRAILS sample after correction for confounders (p = 0.02). In the IMAGE sample, the 5-HTTLPR S/S genotype interacted with maternal smoking during pregnancy, increasing problems in social interaction (p = 0.02), and also interacted with low birth weight, increasing rigid behavior (p = 0.03). Findings for 5-HTTLPR in the TRAILS sample were similar, albeit for related CSBQ subscales. Conclusions These findings suggest gene-environment interaction effects on ASD symptoms in children with ADHD. PMID:20868372

  10. The activity of catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) is not impaired by high doses of epigallocatechin-3-gallate (EGCG) in vivo.

    PubMed

    Lorenz, Mario; Paul, Friedemann; Moobed, Minoo; Baumann, Gert; Zimmermann, Benno F; Stangl, Karl; Stangl, Verena

    2014-10-01

    Catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) inactivates many endogenous and exogenous compounds by O-methylation. Therefore, it represents a major enzyme of the metabolic pathway with important biological functions in hormonal and drug metabolism. The tea catechin epigallocatechin-3-gallate (EGCG) is known to inhibit COMT enzymatic activity in vitro. Based on beneficial in vitro results, EGCG is extensively used in human intervention studies in a variety of human diseases. Owing to its low bioavailability, rather high doses of EGCG are frequently applied that may impair COMT activity in vivo. Enzymatic activities of four functional COMT single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) were determined in red blood cells (RBCs) in 24 healthy human volunteers (14 women, 10 men). The subjects were supplemented with 750 mg of EGCG and EGCG plasma levels and COMT enzyme activities in erythrocytes were measured before and 2 h after intervention. The homozygous Val→Met substitution in the SNP rs4680 resulted in significantly decreased COMT activity. Enzymatic COMT activities in RBCs were also affected by the other three COMT polymorphisms. EGCG plasma levels significantly increased after intervention. They were not influenced by any of the COMT SNPs and different enzyme activities. Ingestion of 750 mg EGCG did not result in impairment of COMT activity. However, COMT activity was significantly increased by 24% after EGCG consumption. These results indicate that supplementation with a high dose of EGCG does not impair the activity of COMT. Consequently, it may not interfere with COMT-mediated metabolism and elimination of exogenous and endogenous COMT substrates. PMID:24972245

  11. Differential Effects of the Catechol-O-Methyltransferase Val158Met Genotype on the Cognitive Function of Schizophrenia Patients and Healthy Japanese Individuals

    PubMed Central

    Tsuchimine, Shoko; Yasui-Furukori, Norio; Kaneda, Ayako; Kaneko, Sunao

    2013-01-01

    Background The functional polymorphism Val158Met in the catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) gene has been associated with differences in prefrontal cognitive functions in patients with schizophrenia and healthy individuals. Several studies have indicated that the Met allele is associated with better performance on measures of cognitive function. We investigated whether the COMT Val158Met genotype was associated with cognitive function in 149 healthy controls and 118 patients with schizophrenia. Methods Cognitive function, including verbal memory, working memory, motor speed, attention, executive function and verbal fluency, was assessed by the Brief Assessment of Cognition in Schizophrenia (BACS-J). We employed a one-way analysis of variance (ANOVA) and a multiple regression analysis to determine the associations between the COMT Val158Met genotype and the BACS-J measurements. Results The one-way ANOVA revealed a significant difference in the scores on the Tower of London, a measure of executive function, between the different Val158Met genotypes in the healthy controls (p = 0.023), and a post-hoc analysis showed significant differences between the scores on the Tower of London in the val/val genotype group (18.6 ± 2.4) compared to the other two groups (17.6 ± 2.7 for val/met and 17.1 ± 3.2 for met/met; p = 0.027 and p = 0.024, respectively). Multiple regression analyses revealed that executive function was significantly correlated with the Val158Met genotype (p = 0.003). However, no evidence was found for an effect of the COMT on any cognitive domains of the BACS-J in the patients with schizophrenia. Conclusion These data support the hypothesis that the COMT Val158Met genotype maintains an optimal level of dopamine activity. Further studies should be performed that include a larger sample size and include patients on and off medication, as these patients would help to confirm our findings. PMID:24282499

  12. Catechol-O-Methyltransferase Val158Met Polymorphism and Clinical Response to Antipsychotic Treatment in Schizophrenia and Schizo-Affective Disorder Patients: a Meta-Analysis

    PubMed Central

    Huang, Eric; Zai, Clement C.; Lisoway, Amanda; Maciukiewicz, Malgorzata; Felsky, Daniel; Tiwari, Arun K.; Bishop, Jeffrey R.; Ikeda, Masashi; Molero, Patricio; Ortuno, Felipe; Porcelli, Stefano; Samochowiec, Jerzy; Mierzejewski, Pawel; Gao, Shugui; Crespo-Facorro, Benedicto; Pelayo-Terán, José M; Kaur, Harpreet; Kukreti, Ritushree; Meltzer, Herbert Y.; Lieberman, Jeffrey A.; Potkin, Steven G.; Müller, Daniel J.

    2016-01-01

    Background: The catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) enzyme plays a crucial role in dopamine degradation, and the COMT Val158Met polymorphism (rs4680) is associated with significant differences in enzymatic activity and consequently dopamine concentrations in the prefrontal cortex. Multiple studies have analyzed the COMT Val158Met variant in relation to antipsychotic response. Here, we conducted a meta-analysis examining the relationship between COMT Val158Met and antipsychotic response. Methods: Searches using PubMed, Web of Science, and PsycInfo databases (03/01/2015) yielded 23 studies investigating COMT Val158Met variation and antipsychotic response in schizophrenia and schizo-affective disorder. Responders/nonresponders were defined using each study’s original criteria. If no binary response definition was used, authors were asked to define response according to at least 30% Positive and Negative Syndrome Scale score reduction (or equivalent in other scales). Analysis was conducted under a fixed-effects model. Results: Ten studies met inclusion criteria for the meta-analysis. Five additional antipsychotic-treated samples were analyzed for Val158Met and response and included in the meta-analysis (ntotal=1416). Met/Met individuals were significantly more likely to respond than Val-carriers (P=.039, ORMet/Met=1.37, 95% CI: 1.02–1.85). Met/Met patients also experienced significantly greater improvement in positive symptoms relative to Val-carriers (P=.030, SMD=0.24, 95% CI: 0.024–0.46). Posthoc analyses on patients treated with atypical antipsychotics (n=1207) showed that Met/Met patients were significantly more likely to respond relative to Val-carriers (P=.0098, ORMet/Met=1.54, 95% CI: 1.11–2.14), while no difference was observed for typical-antipsychotic-treated patients (n=155) (P=.65). Conclusions: Our findings suggest that the COMT Val158Met polymorphism is associated with response to antipsychotics in schizophrenia and schizo-affective disorder

  13. Functional Analysis of Genetic Variation in Catechol-O-Methyltransferase (COMT): Effects on mRNA, Protein, and Enzyme Activity in Postmortem Human Brain

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Jingshan; Lipska, Barbara K.; Halim, Nader; Ma, Quang D.; Matsumoto, Mitsuyuki; Melhem, Samer; Kolachana, Bhaskar S.; Hyde, Thomas M.; Herman, Mary M.; Apud, Jose; Egan, Michael F.; Kleinman, Joel E.; Weinberger, Daniel R.

    2004-01-01

    Catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) is a key enzyme in the elimination of dopamine in the prefrontal cortex of the human brain. Genetic variation in the COMT gene (MIM 116790) has been associated with altered prefrontal cortex function and higher risk for schizophrenia, but the specific alleles and their functional implications have been controversial. We analyzed the effects of several single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) within COMT on mRNA expression levels (using reverse-transcriptase polymerase chain reaction analysis), protein levels (using Western blot analysis), and enzyme activity (using catechol methylation) in a large sample (n = 108) of postmortem human prefrontal cortex tissue, which predominantly expresses the -membrane-bound isoform. A common coding SNP, Val158Met (rs4680), significantly affected protein abundance and enzyme activity but not mRNA expression levels, suggesting that differences in protein integrity account for the difference in enzyme activity between alleles. A SNP in intron 1 (rs737865) and a SNP in the 3′ flanking region (rs165599)—both of which have been reported to contribute to allelic expression differences and to be associated with schizophrenia as part of a haplotype with Val—had no effect on mRNA expression levels, protein immunoreactivity, or enzyme activity. In lymphocytes from 47 subjects, we confirmed a similar effect on enzyme activity in samples with the Val/Met genotype but no effect in samples with the intron 1 or 3′ SNPs. Separate analyses revealed that the subject's sex, as well as the presence of a SNP in the P2 promoter region (rs2097603), had small effects on COMT enzyme activity. Using site-directed mutagenesis of mouse COMT cDNA, followed by in vitro translation, we found that the conversion of Leu at the homologous position into Met or Val progressively and significantly diminished enzyme activity. Thus, although we cannot exclude a more complex genetic basis for functional effects of COMT, Val is a

  14. Accumulate repeat accumulate codes

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Abbasfar, Aliazam; Divsalar, Dariush; Yao, Kung

    2004-01-01

    In this paper we propose an innovative channel coding scheme called 'Accumulate Repeat Accumulate codes' (ARA). This class of codes can be viewed as serial turbo-like codes, or as a subclass of Low Density Parity Check (LDPC) codes, thus belief propagation can be used for iterative decoding of ARA codes on a graph. The structure of encoder for this class can be viewed as precoded Repeat Accumulate (RA) code or as precoded Irregular Repeat Accumulate (IRA) code, where simply an accumulator is chosen as a precoder. Thus ARA codes have simple, and very fast encoder structure when they representing LDPC codes. Based on density evolution for LDPC codes through some examples for ARA codes, we show that for maximum variable node degree 5 a minimum bit SNR as low as 0.08 dB from channel capacity for rate 1/2 can be achieved as the block size goes to infinity. Thus based on fixed low maximum variable node degree, its threshold outperforms not only the RA and IRA codes but also the best known LDPC codes with the dame maximum node degree. Furthermore by puncturing the accumulators any desired high rate codes close to code rate 1 can be obtained with thresholds that stay close to the channel capacity thresholds uniformly. Iterative decoding simulation results are provided. The ARA codes also have projected graph or protograph representation that allows for high speed decoder implementation.

  15. Accumulate-Repeat-Accumulate-Accumulate-Codes

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Divsalar, Dariush; Dolinar, Sam; Thorpe, Jeremy

    2004-01-01

    Inspired by recently proposed Accumulate-Repeat-Accumulate (ARA) codes [15], in this paper we propose a channel coding scheme called Accumulate-Repeat-Accumulate-Accumulate (ARAA) codes. These codes can be seen as serial turbo-like codes or as a subclass of Low Density Parity Check (LDPC) codes, and they have a projected graph or protograph representation; this allows for a high-speed iterative decoder implementation using belief propagation. An ARAA code can be viewed as a precoded Repeat-and-Accumulate (RA) code with puncturing in concatenation with another accumulator, where simply an accumulator is chosen as the precoder; thus ARAA codes have a very fast encoder structure. Using density evolution on their associated protographs, we find examples of rate-lJ2 ARAA codes with maximum variable node degree 4 for which a minimum bit-SNR as low as 0.21 dB from the channel capacity limit can be achieved as the block size goes to infinity. Such a low threshold cannot be achieved by RA or Irregular RA (IRA) or unstructured irregular LDPC codes with the same constraint on the maximum variable node degree. Furthermore by puncturing the accumulators we can construct families of higher rate ARAA codes with thresholds that stay close to their respective channel capacity thresholds uniformly. Iterative decoding simulation results show comparable performance with the best-known LDPC codes but with very low error floor even at moderate block sizes.

  16. Monoamine Oxidase A (MAOA) and Catechol-O-Methyltransferase (COMT) Gene Polymorphisms Interact with Maternal Parenting in Association with Adolescent Reactive Aggression but not Proactive Aggression: Evidence of Differential Susceptibility.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Wenxin; Cao, Cong; Wang, Meiping; Ji, Linqin; Cao, Yanmiao

    2016-04-01

    To date, whether and how gene-environment (G × E) interactions operate differently across distinct subtypes of aggression remains untested. More recently, in contrast with the diathesis-stress hypothesis, an alternative hypothesis of differential susceptibility proposes that individuals could be differentially susceptible to environments depending on their genotypes in a "for better and for worse" manner. The current study examined interactions between monoamine oxidase A (MAOA) T941G and catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) Val158Met polymorphisms with maternal parenting on two types of aggression: reactive and proactive. Moreover, whether these potential G × E interactions would be consistent with the diathesis-stress versus the differential susceptibility hypothesis was tested. Within the sample of 1399 Chinese Han adolescents (47.2 % girls, M age = 12.32 years, SD = 0.50), MAOA and COMT genes both interacted with positive parenting in their associations with reactive but not proactive aggression. Adolescents with T alleles/TT homozygotes of MAOA gene or Met alleles of COMT gene exhibited more reactive aggression when exposed to low positive parenting, but less reactive aggression when exposed to high positive parenting. These findings provide the first evidence for distinct G × E interaction effects on reactive versus proactive aggression and lend further support for the differential susceptibility hypothesis. PMID:26932718

  17. Voxelwise eigenvector centrality mapping of the human functional connectome reveals an influence of the catechol-O-methyltransferase val158met polymorphism on the default mode and somatomotor network.

    PubMed

    Markett, Sebastian; Montag, Christian; Heeren, Behrend; Saryiska, Rayna; Lachmann, Bernd; Weber, Bernd; Reuter, Martin

    2016-06-01

    Functional connections between brain regions constitute the substrate of the human functional connectome, whose topography has been discussed as an endophenotype for psychiatric disorders. Genetic influences on the entire connectome, however, have been rarely investigated so far. We tested for connectome-wide influences of the val158met (rs4860) polymorphism on the catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) gene by applying formal network analysis and eigenvector centrality mapping on the voxel level to resting-state functional magnetic imaging data. This approach finds brain regions that are central in the network by aggregating local and global connectivity patterns, most importantly without the requirement to select regions or networks of interest. The COMT variant linked to high enzyme activity increased network centrality in distributed brain areas that are known to constitute the brain's default mode network. Further results also indicated a COMT influence on areas implicated in the somatomotor network. These findings are in line with the polymorphism's alleged role in cognitive processing and its role in psychotic disorders. The study is the first to demonstrate the influence of a functional and behaviorally relevant genetic variant on connectome-wide functional connectivity and is an important step toward establishing the functional connectome as an endophenotype for psychiatric and behavioral phenotypes. PMID:26025199

  18. Dopamine receptor D2 and catechol-O-methyltransferase gene polymorphisms associated with anorexia nervosa in Chinese Han population: DRD2 and COMT gene polymorphisms were associated with AN.

    PubMed

    Peng, Sufang; Yu, Shunying; Wang, Qian; Kang, Qing; Zhang, Yanxia; Zhang, Ran; Jiang, Wenhui; Qian, Yiping; Zhang, Haiyin; Zhang, Mingdao; Xiao, Zeping; Chen, Jue

    2016-03-11

    Dopamine receptor D2 (DRD2) and catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) are important in dopamine system which is proved to be associated with food-anticipatory behavior, food restriction, reward and motivation. This has made them good candidates for anorexia nervosa (AN). The aim of this work is to explore the roles of DRD2 (rs1800497) and COMT (rs4680, rs4633, rs4818) gene polymorphisms in the susceptibility of AN within the Chinese Han population. We recruited 260AN patients with DSM-IV diagnosis criteria, and 247 unrelated, normal weight controls. DRD2 (rs1800497) and COMT (rs4680, rs4633, rs4818) were genotyped in all subjects. We found rs1800497 and rs4633 were associated with the susceptibility of AN within the Chinese Han sample, and allele C of rs1800497 was a protective factor. There was a gene-gene interaction between rs1800497 of DRD2 gene and rs4633 of COMT gene. We concluded that rs1800497 and rs4633 play important roles in the AN susceptibility with respect to the Chinese Han population. The gene-gene interaction between DRD2 and COMT contributes to the risk of AN. PMID:26808641

  19. [Expression of Catechol-O-Methyltransferase (Comt), Mineralocorticoid Receptor (Mlr), and Epithelial Sodium Channel (ENaC) Genes in Kidneys of Hypertensive ISIAH Rats at Rest and during Response to Stress].

    PubMed

    Abramova, T O; Smolenskaya, S E; Antonov, E V; Redina, O E; Markel, A L

    2016-02-01

    Emotional stress plays a significant role in the processes of the development of arterial hypertension, especially in the presence of genetic predisposition. The origin and maintenance of hypertensive status during stress development can be activated by the sympathetic nervous system. An increase in sympathetic stimulation can, in turn, result in a change in the functions of kidneys, which provide fluid and electrolyte balance of the organism. A comparative study of the mRNA expression level of catechol-o-methyltransferase (Comt), mineralocorticoid receptor (Mlr), and β-subunit of epithelial sodium channel (β-ENaC) genes was conducted on the kidneys of hypertensive ISIAH rats and normotensive WAG rats at rest and after the effect of emotional stress. The discovered changes in the expression level of the selected genes confirm their involvement in increased sympathetic stimulation of the kidney, along with changes in the function of kidney regulation of fluid and electrolyte balance, which is an important factor of the development of sustained hypertension in the ISIAH rats strain. PMID:27215035

  20. Genetic moderation of the effects of cannabis: catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) affects the impact of Δ9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) on working memory performance but not on the occurrence of psychotic experiences.

    PubMed

    Tunbridge, Elizabeth M; Dunn, Graham; Murray, Robin M; Evans, Nicole; Lister, Rachel; Stumpenhorst, Katharina; Harrison, Paul J; Morrison, Paul D; Freeman, Daniel

    2015-11-01

    Cannabis use can induce cognitive impairments and psychotic experiences. A functional polymorphism in the catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) gene (Val(158)Met) appears to influence the immediate cognitive and psychotic effects of cannabis, or ∆(9)-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), its primary psychoactive ingredient. This study investigated the moderation of the impact of experimentally administered THC by COMT. Cognitive performance and psychotic experiences were studied in participants without a psychiatric diagnosis, using a between-subjects design (THC vs. placebo). The effect of COMT Val(158)Met genotype on the cognitive and psychotic effects of THC, administered intravenously in a double-blind, placebo-controlled manner to 78 participants who were vulnerable to paranoia, was examined. The results showed interactive effects of genotype and drug group (THC or placebo) on working memory, assayed using the Digit Span Backwards task. Specifically, THC impaired performance in COMT Val/Val, but not Met, carriers. In contrast, the effect of THC on psychotic experiences, measured using the Community Assessment of Psychic Experiences (CAPE) positive dimension, was unaffected by COMT genotype. This study is the largest to date examining the impact of COMT genotype on response to experimentally administered THC, and the first using a purely non-clinical cohort. The data suggest that COMT genotype moderates the cognitive, but not the psychotic, effects of acutely administered THC. PMID:26464454

  1. Accumulate-Repeat-Accumulate-Accumulate Codes

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Divsalar, Dariush; Dolinar, Samuel; Thorpe, Jeremy

    2007-01-01

    Accumulate-repeat-accumulate-accumulate (ARAA) codes have been proposed, inspired by the recently proposed accumulate-repeat-accumulate (ARA) codes. These are error-correcting codes suitable for use in a variety of wireless data-communication systems that include noisy channels. ARAA codes can be regarded as serial turbolike codes or as a subclass of low-density parity-check (LDPC) codes, and, like ARA codes they have projected graph or protograph representations; these characteristics make it possible to design high-speed iterative decoders that utilize belief-propagation algorithms. The objective in proposing ARAA codes as a subclass of ARA codes was to enhance the error-floor performance of ARA codes while maintaining simple encoding structures and low maximum variable node degree.

  2. Cloning and expressing a highly functional and substrate specific farnesoic acid o-methyltransferase from the Asian citrus psyllid (Diaphorina citri Kuwayama).

    PubMed

    Van Ekert, Evelien; Shatters, Robert G; Rougé, Pierre; Powell, Charles A; Smagghe, Guy; Borovsky, Dov

    2015-01-01

    The Asian citrus psyllid, Diaphorina citri, transmits a phloem-limited bacterium, Candidatus 'Liberibacter' asiaticus that causes citrus greening disease. Because juvenile hormone (JH) plays an important role in adult and nymphal development, we studied the final steps in JH biosynthesis in D. citri. A putative JH acid methyltransferase ortholog gene (jmtD) and its cognate cDNA were identified by searching D. citri genome database. Expression analysis shows expression in all life stages. In adults, it is expressed in the head-thorax, (containing the corpora allata), and the abdomen (containing ovaries and male accessory glands). A 3D protein model identified the catalytic groove with catalytically active amino acids and the S-adenosyl methionine (SAM)-binding loop. The cDNA was expressed in Escherichia coli cells and the purified enzyme showed high preference for farnesoic acid (FA) and homoFA (kcat of 0.752 × 10(-3) and 0.217 × 10(-3) s(-1), respectively) as compared to JH acid I (JHA I) (cis/trans/cis; 2Z, 6E, 10cis), JHA III (2E, 6E, 10cis), and JHA I (trans/cis/cis; 2E, 2Z, 10cis) (kcat of 0.081 × 10(-3), 0.013 × 10(-3), and 0.003 × 10(-3) s(-1), respectively). This suggests that this ortholog is a DcFA-o-methyl transferase gene (fmtD), not a jmtD, and that JH biosynthesis in D. citri proceeds from FA to JH III through methyl farnesoate (MF). DcFA-o-MT does not require Ca(2+), Mg(2+) or Zn(2+), however, Zn(2+) (1 mM) completely inhibits the enzyme probably by binding H115 at the active groove. This represents the first purified FA-o-MT from Hemiptera with preferred biological activity for FA and not JHA. PMID:25893162

  3. Cloning and expressing a highly functional and substrate specific farnesoic acid o-methyltransferase from the Asian citrus psyllid (Diaphorina citri Kuwayama)

    PubMed Central

    Van Ekert, Evelien; Shatters, Robert G.; Rougé, Pierre; Powell, Charles A.; Smagghe, Guy; Borovsky, Dov

    2015-01-01

    The Asian citrus psyllid, Diaphorina citri, transmits a phloem-limited bacterium, Candidatus ‘Liberibacter’ asiaticus that causes citrus greening disease. Because juvenile hormone (JH) plays an important role in adult and nymphal development, we studied the final steps in JH biosynthesis in D. citri. A putative JH acid methyltransferase ortholog gene (jmtD) and its cognate cDNA were identified by searching D. citri genome database. Expression analysis shows expression in all life stages. In adults, it is expressed in the head-thorax, (containing the corpora allata), and the abdomen (containing ovaries and male accessory glands). A 3D protein model identified the catalytic groove with catalytically active amino acids and the S-adenosyl methionine (SAM)-binding loop. The cDNA was expressed in Escherichia coli cells and the purified enzyme showed high preference for farnesoic acid (FA) and homoFA (kcat of 0.752 × 10−3 and 0.217 × 10−3 s−1, respectively) as compared to JH acid I (JHA I) (cis/trans/cis; 2Z, 6E, 10cis), JHA III (2E, 6E, 10cis), and JHA I (trans/cis/cis; 2E, 2Z, 10cis) (kcat of 0.081 × 10−3, 0.013 × 10−3, and 0.003 × 10−3 s−1, respectively). This suggests that this ortholog is a DcFA-o-methyl transferase gene (fmtD), not a jmtD, and that JH biosynthesis in D. citri proceeds from FA to JH III through methyl farnesoate (MF). DcFA-o-MT does not require Ca2+, Mg2+ or Zn2+, however, Zn2+ (1 mM) completely inhibits the enzyme probably by binding H115 at the active groove. This represents the first purified FA-o-MT from Hemiptera with preferred biological activity for FA and not JHA. PMID:25893162

  4. Catechol-O-methyltransferase Val158Met genotype and the clinical responses to duloxetine treatment or plasma levels of 3-methoxy-4-hydroxyphenylglycol and homovanillic acid in Japanese patients with major depressive disorder

    PubMed Central

    Atake, Kiyokazu; Yoshimura, Reiji; Hori, Hikaru; Katsuki, Asuka; Nakamura, Jun

    2015-01-01

    Purpose This study investigated the relationships among the plasma levels of catecholamine metabolites, the clinical response to duloxetine treatment, and Val158Met polymorphism of the catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) gene. Subjects and methods Sixty-four patients and 30 healthy control subjects were recruited. Major depressive episodes were diagnosed using the Structured Clinical Interview for the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fourth Edition, Text Revision criteria. The severity of depression was evaluated using the 17-item Hamilton Rating Scale for Depression (HAMD17). Patients whose HAMD17 scores were 15 or greater were enrolled in the study. Blood sampling and clinical evaluation were performed at week 0 and week 8. The levels of plasma catecholamine metabolites were measured using high-performance liquid chromatography with electrochemical detection. Genotyping was performed using direct sequencing. Results Thirty of 45 patients (67%) responded to duloxetine treatment during the 8 weeks of treatment. The baseline plasma levels of 3-methoxy-4-hydroxyphenylglycol (MHPG), but not homovanillic acid (HVA), were lower in patients with major depressive disorder (MDD) who had the Val/Val genotype than in patients who were Met-carriers. Patients with MDD and the Val/Val genotype, but not Met carriers, had increased plasma levels of MHPG after 8 weeks of duloxetine treatment. The baseline plasma MHPG levels in healthy control subjects with the Val/Val genotype were significantly higher than those in patients with MDD. Among the subjects in the MDD group with the Val/Val genotype, the plasma MHPG levels increased to the same degree as in the healthy control subjects with the Val/Val genotype after 8 weeks of duloxetine treatment. Conclusion The relationship among the COMT Val158Met polymorphism, plasma levels of catecholamine metabolites, and responses to duloxetine is complex. Nevertheless, our results suggest that patients with MDD and the

  5. Association of Single Nucleotide Polymorphisms in Catechol-O-Methyltransferase and Serine-Threonine Protein Kinase Genes in the Pakistani Schizophrenic Population: A Study with Special Emphasis on Cannabis and Smokeless Tobacco.

    PubMed

    Nawaz, Rukhsana; Siddiqui, Sonia

    2015-01-01

    Schizophrenia is a neuropsychiatric disorder in which abnormalities in the prefrontal cortex lead to impaired synthesis of dopamine. It is associated with hallucination, psychosis and hearing impairments. Many susceptible genes have been identified in schizophrenia such as catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) and serine/threonine kinase (AKT1). Single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in these genes have not been identified in Pakistan. Therefore, we investigated the allelic and genotypic frequencies in COMT and AKT1 genes in the Pakistani population. Polymerase chain reactionrestriction fragment length polymorphism (PCR-RFLP) and DNA sequencing were used to identify SNPs in the genes. The present study shows that COMT Val and COMT Met allelic frequencies for the controls were p=0.52, q=0.48 and for the schizophrenic cases they were p=0.34, q=0.66 respectively. The distribution of polymorphism in COMT Val158Met genotype by Hardy-Weinberg equilibrium (HWE) was P=0.61 for controls and P=0.005 for cases. The data reveal that SNP rs1130214 T allele mutation was found neither in patients nor in controls in the 5' untranslated region (UTR). This proves that no association of AKT1 and positive association of COMT with schizophrenia exist in the population of Pakistan. Moreover, a study based on a single family showed COMT Met allele inheritance in schizophrenic offspring. This suggested that COMT allele alteration influences susceptibility to at least some forms of psychosis in the Pakistani population. Interestingly, according to our socio-economical survey, COMT genotype has no association with cannabis but it is strongly associated with tobacco. The Pakistani population with Val158Met SNP showed more susceptibility towards developing schizophrenia. This study highlights the genetic differences between Pakistani and other Caucasian populations. PMID:25801838

  6. The Role of a Catechol-O-Methyltransferase (COMT) Val158Met Genetic Polymorphism in Schizophrenia: A Systematic Review and Updated Meta-analysis on 32,816 Subjects.

    PubMed

    González-Castro, Thelma Beatriz; Hernández-Díaz, Yazmin; Juárez-Rojop, Isela Esther; López-Narváez, María Lilia; Tovilla-Zárate, Carlos Alfonso; Fresan, Ana

    2016-06-01

    An association between a catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) Val156Met (rs4680) polymorphism and schizophrenia has been reported in the literature, although no conclusive outcomes have been attained. The aim of this study was to evaluate the association of the COMT Val108/158Met polymorphism with schizophrenia in a systematic review and meta-analysis. We performed a keyword search on PubMed and EBSCO databases. All English language case-control studies published up to April 2015 were selected. A total of 67 studies were selected for inclusion. The genotype distribution of subjects with schizophrenia was compared with healthy control subjects, using allelic, additive, dominant and recessive models. The pooled results from the meta-analysis (15,565 cases and 17,251 healthy subjects) after the elimination of heterogeneity showed an association between COMT Val108/158Met and schizophrenia [recessive model: OR 1.08 CI 95 % (1.01-1.15)]. We conducted subgroup analyses according to ethnicity. An association was observed in our Caucasian population in the additive model [OR 1.21 CI 95 % (1.06-1.37)] and in the recessive model [OR 1.21 CI 95 % (1.11-1.32)], but not in the allelic or dominant models. However, when we analysed our Asian population after the elimination of heterogeneity, no evidence of a significant association was found in any of the genetic models. Our analyses indicate that there is an association between COMT Val108/158Met and schizophrenia in the general population. Furthermore, in Caucasian populations, this risk could be increased. PMID:27020768

  7. Executive functions and selective attention are favored in middle-aged healthy women carriers of the Val/Val genotype of the catechol-o-methyltransferase gene: a behavioral genetic study

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background Cognitive deficits such as poor memory, the inability to concentrate, deficits in abstract reasoning, attention and set-shifting flexibility have been reported in middle-aged women. It has been suggested that cognitive decline may be due to several factors which include hormonal changes, individual differences, normal processes of aging and age-related changes in dopaminergic neurotransmission. Catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT), a common functional polymorphism, has been related to executive performance in young healthy volunteers, old subjects and schizophrenia patients. The effect of this polymorphism on cognitive function in middle-aged healthy women is not well known. The aim of the current study was to investigate whether measures of executive function, sustained attention, selective attention and verbal fluency would be different depending on the COMT genotype and task demand. Method We genotyped 74 middle-aged healthy women (48 to 65 years old) for the COMT Val158Met polymorphism. We analyzed the effects of this polymorphism on executive functions (Wisconsin Card Sorting Test), selective attention (Stroop test), sustained attention (Continuous Performance Test) and word generation (Verbal Fluency test), which are cognitive functions that involve the frontal lobe. Results There were 27 women with the Val/Val COMT genotype, 15 with the Met/Met genotype, and 32 with the Val/Met genotype. Women carriers of the Val/Val genotype performed better in executive functions, as indicated by a lower number of errors committed in comparison with the Met/Met or Val/Met groups. The correct responses on selective attention were higher in the Val/Val group, and the number of errors committed was higher in the Met/Met group during the incongruence trial in comparison with the Val/Val group. Performance on sustained attention and the number of words generated did not show significant differences between the three genotypes. Conclusion These findings indicate that

  8. Expression of cell wall related genes in basal and ear internodes of silking brown-midrib-3, caffeic acid O-methyltransferase (COMT) down-regulated, and normal maize plants

    PubMed Central

    Guillaumie, Sabine; Goffner, Deborah; Barbier, Odile; Martinant, Jean-Pierre; Pichon, Magalie; Barrière, Yves

    2008-01-01

    Background Silage maize is a major forage and energy resource for cattle feeding, and several studies have shown that lignin content and structure are the determining factors in forage maize feeding value. In maize, four natural brown-midrib mutants have modified lignin content, lignin structure and cell wall digestibility. The greatest lignin reduction and the highest cell wall digestibility were observed in the brown-midrib-3 (bm3) mutant, which is disrupted in the caffeic acid O-methyltransferase (COMT) gene. Results Expression of cell wall related genes was investigated in basal and ear internodes of normal, COMT antisens (AS225), and bm3 maize plants of the INRA F2 line. A cell wall macro-array was developed with 651 gene specific tags of genes specifically involved in cell wall biogenesis. When comparing basal (older lignifying) and ear (younger lignifying) internodes of the normal line, all genes known to be involved in constitutive monolignol biosynthesis had a higher expression in younger ear internodes. The expression of the COMT gene was heavily reduced, especially in the younger lignifying tissues of the ear internode. Despite the fact that AS225 transgene expression was driven only in sclerenchyma tissues, COMT expression was also heavily reduced in AS225 ear and basal internodes. COMT disruption or down-regulation led to differential expressions of a few lignin pathway genes, which were all over-expressed, except for a phenylalanine ammonia-lyase gene. More unexpectedly, several transcription factor genes, cell signaling genes, transport and detoxification genes, genes involved in cell wall carbohydrate metabolism and genes encoding cell wall proteins, were differentially expressed, and mostly over-expressed, in COMT-deficient plants. Conclusion Differential gene expressions in COMT-deficient plants highlighted a probable disturbance in cell wall assembly. In addition, the gene expressions suggested modified chronology of the different events leading

  9. Accumulate Repeat Accumulate Coded Modulation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Abbasfar, Aliazam; Divsalar, Dariush; Yao, Kung

    2004-01-01

    In this paper we propose an innovative coded modulation scheme called 'Accumulate Repeat Accumulate Coded Modulation' (ARA coded modulation). This class of codes can be viewed as serial turbo-like codes, or as a subclass of Low Density Parity Check (LDPC) codes that are combined with high level modulation. Thus at the decoder belief propagation can be used for iterative decoding of ARA coded modulation on a graph, provided a demapper transforms the received in-phase and quadrature samples to reliability of the bits.

  10. Rice PROTEIN l-ISOASPARTYL METHYLTRANSFERASE isoforms differentially accumulate during seed maturation to restrict deleterious isoAsp and reactive oxygen species accumulation and are implicated in seed vigor and longevity.

    PubMed

    Petla, Bhanu Prakash; Kamble, Nitin Uttam; Kumar, Meenu; Verma, Pooja; Ghosh, Shraboni; Singh, Ajeet; Rao, Venkateswara; Salvi, Prafull; Kaur, Harmeet; Saxena, Saurabh Chandra; Majee, Manoj

    2016-07-01

    PROTEIN l-ISOASPARTYL O-METHYLTRANSFERASE (PIMT) is a protein-repairing enzyme involved in seed vigor and longevity. However, the regulation of PIMT isoforms during seed development and the mechanism of PIMT-mediated improvement of seed vigor and longevity are largely unknown. In this study in rice (Oryza sativa), we demonstrate the dynamics and correlation of isoaspartyl (isoAsp)-repairing demands and PIMT activity, and their implications, during seed development, germination and aging, through biochemical, molecular and genetic studies. Molecular and biochemical analyses revealed that rice possesses various biochemically active and inactive PIMT isoforms. Transcript and western blot analyses clearly showed the seed development stage and tissue-specific accumulation of active isoforms. Immunolocalization studies revealed distinct isoform expression in embryo and aleurone layers. Further analyses of transgenic lines for each OsPIMT isoform revealed a clear role in the restriction of deleterious isoAsp and age-induced reactive oxygen species (ROS) accumulation to improve seed vigor and longevity. Collectively, our data suggest that a PIMT-mediated, protein repair mechanism is initiated during seed development in rice, with each isoform playing a distinct, yet coordinated, role. Our results also raise the intriguing possibility that PIMT repairs antioxidative enzymes and proteins which restrict ROS accumulation, lipid peroxidation, etc. in seed, particularly during aging, thus contributing to seed vigor and longevity. PMID:26987457

  11. Protein repair L-isoaspartyl methyltransferase in plants. Phylogenetic distribution and the accumulation of substrate proteins in aged barley seeds.

    PubMed Central

    Mudgett, M B; Lowenson, J D; Clarke, S

    1997-01-01

    Protein L-isoaspartate (D-aspartate) O-methyltransferases (MTs; EC 2.1.1.77) can initiate the conversion of detrimental L-isoaspartyl residues in spontaneously damaged proteins to normal L-aspartyl residues. We detected this enzyme in 45 species from 23 families representing most of the divisions of the plant kingdom. MT activity is often localized in seeds, suggesting that it has a role in their maturation, quiescence, and germination. The relationship among MT activity, the accumulation of abnormal protein L-isoaspartyl residues, and seed viability was explored in barley (Hordeum vulgare cultivar Himalaya) seeds, which contain high levels of MT. Natural aging of barley seeds for 17 years resulted in a significant reduction in MT activity and in seed viability, coupled with increased levels of "unrepaired" L-isoaspartyl residues. In seeds heated to accelerate aging, we found no reduction of MT activity, but we did observe decreased seed viability and the accumulation of isoaspartyl residues. Among populations of accelerated aged seed, those possessing the highest levels of L-isoaspartyl-containing proteins had the lowest germination percentages. These results suggest that the MT present in seeds cannot efficiently repair all spontaneously damaged proteins containing altered aspartyl residues, and their accumulation during aging may contribute to the loss of seed viability. PMID:9414558

  12. The Putative Son's Attractiveness Alters the Perceived Attractiveness of the Putative Father.

    PubMed

    Prokop, Pavol

    2015-08-01

    A body of literature has investigated female mate choice in the pre-mating context (pre-mating sexual selection). Humans, however, are long-living mammals forming pair-bonds which sequentially produce offspring. Post-mating evaluations of a partner's attractiveness may thus significantly influence the reproductive success of men and women. I tested herein the theory that the attractiveness of putative sons provides extra information about the genetic quality of fathers, thereby influencing fathers' attractiveness across three studies. As predicted, facially attractive boys were more frequently attributed to attractive putative fathers and vice versa (Study 1). Furthermore, priming with an attractive putative son increased the attractiveness of the putative father with the reverse being true for unattractive putative sons. When putative fathers were presented as stepfathers, the effect of the boy's attractiveness on the stepfather's attractiveness was lower and less consistent (Study 2). This suggests that the presence of an attractive boy has the strongest effect on the perceived attractiveness of putative fathers rather than on non-fathers. The generalized effect of priming with beautiful non-human objects also exists, but its effect is much weaker compared with the effects of putative biological sons (Study 3). Overall, this study highlighted the importance of post-mating sexual selection in humans and suggests that the heritable attractive traits of men are also evaluated by females after mating and/or may be used by females in mate poaching. PMID:25731909

  13. Toddlers' Duration of Attention toward Putative Threat

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kiel, Elizabeth J.; Buss, Kristin A.

    2011-01-01

    Although individual differences in reactions to novelty in the toddler years have been consistently linked to risk of developing anxious behavior, toddlers' attention toward a novel, putatively threatening stimulus while in the presence of other enjoyable activities has rarely been examined as a precursor to such risk. The current study examined…

  14. Magnetism and the putative early Martian life

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rochette, P.

    2001-08-01

    A short critical review is provided on three questions linking magnetism and the putative early Mars life. Was there a large internal Martian magnetic field, during which period, and is it a requisite for life? What is the origin of the paleomagnetic signal of Martian meteorites, including ALH84001? What is the present credibility of the case for fossil bacterial magnetite grains in ALH84001?

  15. Catehol-O-Methyltransferase gene Val158Met polymorphism as a potential predictor of response to computer-assisted delivery of cognitive-behavioral therapy among cocaine-dependent individuals: Preliminary findings from a randomized controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    Carroll, Kathleen M.; Herman, Aryeh; DeVito, Elise E.; Frankforter, Tami L.; Potenza, Marc N; Sofuoglu, Mehmet

    2015-01-01

    Background Findings from uncontrolled studies suggest that the COMT Val108/158Met polymorphism may affect response to cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) in some populations. Using data from a randomized controlled trial evaluating computerized CBT (CBT4CBT), we evaluated treatment response by COMT genotype, with the a priori hypothesis that Val carriers would have improved response to computerized delivery of CBT. Methods 101 cocaine-dependent individuals, of whom 81 contributed analyzable genetic samples, were randomized to standard methadone maintenance treatment plus CBT4CBT or standard treatment alone in an 8-week trial. Results There was a significant genotype by time effect on frequency of cocaine use from baseline to the end of the 6-month follow-up, suggesting greater reductions over time for Val carriers relative to individuals with the Met/Met genotype. There was a significant treatment condition by genotype interactions for rates of participants attaining 21 or more days of continuous abstinence as well as self-reported percent days of abstinence, suggesting less cocaine use among Val carriers when assigned to CBT compared to standard treatment. Exploration of possible mechanisms using measures of attentional biased also pointed to greater change over time in these measures among the Val carriers assigned to CBT. Conclusion These are the first data from a randomized controlled trial indicating significant interactions of COMT polymorphism and behavioral therapy condition on treatment outcome, where Val carriers appeared to respond particularly well to computerized CBT. These preliminary data point to a potential biomarker of response to CBT linked to its putative mechanism of action, enhanced cognitive control. PMID:25930952

  16. Putative Excitatory and Putative Inhibitory Inputs Localize to Different Dendritic Domains in a Drosophila Flight Motoneuron

    PubMed Central

    Kuehn, Claudia; Duch, Carsten

    2012-01-01

    Input-output computations of individual neurons may be affected by the three-dimensional structure of their dendrites and by the targeting of input synapses to specific parts of their dendrites. However, only few examples exist where dendritic architecture can be related to behaviorally relevant computations of a neuron. By combining genetic, immunohistochemical, and confocal laser scanning methods this study estimates the location of the spike initiating zone and the dendritic distribution patterns of putative synaptic inputs on an individually identified Drosophila flight motorneuron, MN5. MN5 is a monopolar neuron with more than 4000 dendritic branches. The site of spike initiation was estimated by mapping sodium channel immunolabel onto geometric reconstructions of MN5. Maps of putative excitatory cholinergic and of putative inhibitory GABAergic inputs on MN5 dendrites were created by charting tagged Dα7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors and Rdl GABAA receptors onto MN5 dendritic surface reconstructions. Although these methods provided only an estimate of putative input synapse distributions, the data indicated that inhibitory and excitatory synapses were targeted preferentially to different dendritic domains of MN5, and thus, computed mostly separately. Most putative inhibitory inputs were close to spike initiation, which was consistent with sharp inhibition, as predicted previously based on recordings of motoneuron firing patterns during flight. By contrast, highest densities of putative excitatory inputs at more distant dendritic regions were consistent with the prediction that in response to different power demands during flight, tonic excitatory drive to flight motoneuron dendrites must be smoothly translated into different tonic firing frequencies. PMID:23279094

  17. Ten Putative Contributors to the Obesity Epidemic

    PubMed Central

    McAllister, Emily J.; Dhurandhar, Nikhil V.; Keith, Scott W.; Aronne, Louis J.; Barger, Jamie; Baskin, Monica; Benca, Ruth M.; Biggio, Joseph; Boggiano, Mary M.; Eisenmann, Joe C.; Elobeid, Mai; Fontaine, Kevin R.; Gluckman, Peter; Hanlon, Erin C.; Katzmarzyk, Peter; Pietrobelli, Angelo; Redden, David T.; Ruden, Douglas M.; Wang, Chenxi; Waterland, Robert A.; Wright, Suzanne M.; Allison, David B.

    2010-01-01

    The obesity epidemic is a global issue and shows no signs of abating, while the cause of this epidemic remains unclear. Marketing practices of energy-dense foods and institutionally-driven declines in physical activity are the alleged perpetrators for the epidemic, despite a lack of solid evidence to demonstrate their causal role. While both may contribute to obesity, we call attention to their unquestioned dominance in program funding and public efforts to reduce obesity, and propose several alternative putative contributors that would benefit from equal consideration and attention. Evidence for microorganisms, epigenetics, increasing maternal age, greater fecundity among people with higher adiposity, assortative mating, sleep debt, endocrine disruptors, pharmaceutical iatrogenesis, reduction in variability of ambient temperatures, and intrauterine and intergenerational effects, as contributing factors to the obesity epidemic are reviewed herein. While the evidence is strong for some contributors such as pharmaceutical-induced weight gain, it is still emerging for other reviewed factors. Considering the role of such putative etiological factors of obesity may lead to comprehensive, cause specific, and effective strategies for prevention and treatment of this global epidemic. PMID:19960394

  18. Putative signal peptides of two BURP proteins can direct proteins to their destinations in tobacco cell system.

    PubMed

    Tang, Yulin; Ou, Zhonghua; Qiu, Jianbin; Mi, Zilan

    2014-11-01

    Plant-specific BURP family proteins have a diverse subcellular localization with different functions. However, only limited studies have investigated the functions of their different domains. In the present study, the role of the N-terminal putative signal peptide in protein subcellular localization was investigated using a tobacco cell system. The results showed that SALI3-2 was present in vacuoles, whereas AtRD22 was directed to the apoplast. The N-terminal putative signal peptides of both proteins were confirmed to be the essential and critical domains for targeting the proteins to their destinations. We also demonstrate that the expression and accumulation of mGFP in tobacco cells was increased when mGFP was fused to the putative signal peptide of SALI3-2. The findings offer the potential application of this short peptide in protein production in plants. PMID:25048229

  19. Fast carry accumulator design

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mastin, W. C.

    1971-01-01

    Simple iterative accumulator combined with gated-carry, carry-completion detection, and skip-carry circuits produces three accumulators with decreased carry propagation times. Devices are used in machine control, measurement equipment, and computer applications to increase speed of binary addition. NAND gates are used in combining network.

  20. The Progress and Prospects of Putative Biomarkers for Liver Cancer Stem Cells in Hepatocellular Carcinoma.

    PubMed

    Xiang, Yan; Yang, Ting; Pang, Bing-Yao; Zhu, Ying; Liu, Yong-Ning

    2016-01-01

    Accumulating evidence suggests that hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) is organized by liver cancer stem cells (LCSCs), which are a subset of cells with "stem-like" characteristics. Identification of the LCSCs is a fundamental and important problem in HCC research. LCSCs have been investigated by various stem cell biomarkers. There is still lack of consensus regarding the existence of a "global" marker for LCSCs in HCC. In this review article, we summarize the progress and prospects of putative biomarkers for LCSCs in the past decades, which is essential to develop future therapies targeting CSCs and to predict prognosis and curative effect of these therapies. PMID:27610139

  1. The Progress and Prospects of Putative Biomarkers for Liver Cancer Stem Cells in Hepatocellular Carcinoma

    PubMed Central

    Yang, Ting

    2016-01-01

    Accumulating evidence suggests that hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) is organized by liver cancer stem cells (LCSCs), which are a subset of cells with “stem-like” characteristics. Identification of the LCSCs is a fundamental and important problem in HCC research. LCSCs have been investigated by various stem cell biomarkers. There is still lack of consensus regarding the existence of a “global” marker for LCSCs in HCC. In this review article, we summarize the progress and prospects of putative biomarkers for LCSCs in the past decades, which is essential to develop future therapies targeting CSCs and to predict prognosis and curative effect of these therapies. PMID:27610139

  2. The Biogeography of Putative Microbial Antibiotic Production.

    PubMed

    Morlon, Hélène; O'Connor, Timothy K; Bryant, Jessica A; Charkoudian, Louise K; Docherty, Kathryn M; Jones, Evan; Kembel, Steven W; Green, Jessica L; Bohannan, Brendan J M

    2015-01-01

    Understanding patterns in the distribution and abundance of functional traits across a landscape is of fundamental importance to ecology. Mapping these distributions is particularly challenging for species-rich groups with sparse trait measurement coverage, such as flowering plants, insects, and microorganisms. Here, we use likelihood-based character reconstruction to infer and analyze the spatial distribution of unmeasured traits. We apply this framework to a microbial dataset comprised of 11,732 ketosynthase alpha gene sequences extracted from 144 soil samples from three continents to document the spatial distribution of putative microbial polyketide antibiotic production. Antibiotic production is a key competitive strategy for soil microbial survival and performance. Additionally, novel antibiotic discovery is highly relevant to human health, making natural antibiotic production by soil microorganisms a major target for bioprospecting. Our comparison of trait-based biogeographical patterns to patterns based on taxonomy and phylogeny is relevant to our basic understanding of microbial biogeography as well as the pressing need for new antibiotics. PMID:26102275

  3. The Biogeography of Putative Microbial Antibiotic Production

    PubMed Central

    Bryant, Jessica A.; Charkoudian, Louise K.; Docherty, Kathryn M.; Jones, Evan; Kembel, Steven W.; Green, Jessica L.; Bohannan, Brendan J. M.

    2015-01-01

    Understanding patterns in the distribution and abundance of functional traits across a landscape is of fundamental importance to ecology. Mapping these distributions is particularly challenging for species-rich groups with sparse trait measurement coverage, such as flowering plants, insects, and microorganisms. Here, we use likelihood-based character reconstruction to infer and analyze the spatial distribution of unmeasured traits. We apply this framework to a microbial dataset comprised of 11,732 ketosynthase alpha gene sequences extracted from 144 soil samples from three continents to document the spatial distribution of putative microbial polyketide antibiotic production. Antibiotic production is a key competitive strategy for soil microbial survival and performance. Additionally, novel antibiotic discovery is highly relevant to human health, making natural antibiotic production by soil microorganisms a major target for bioprospecting. Our comparison of trait-based biogeographical patterns to patterns based on taxonomy and phylogeny is relevant to our basic understanding of microbial biogeography as well as the pressing need for new antibiotics. PMID:26102275

  4. Magnetic Pulse Affects a Putative Magnetoreceptor Mechanism

    PubMed Central

    Davila, Alfonso F.; Winklhofer, Michael; Shcherbakov, Valera P.; Petersen, Nikolai

    2005-01-01

    Clusters of superparamagnetic (SP) magnetite crystals have recently been identified in free nerve endings in the upper-beak skin of homing pigeons and are interpreted as being part of a putative magnetoreceptor system. Motivated by these findings, we developed a physical model that accurately predicts the dynamics of interacting SP clusters in a magnetic field. The main predictions are: 1), under a magnetic field, a group of SP clusters self-assembles into a chain-like structure that behaves like a compass needle under slowly rotating fields; 2), in a frequently changing field as encountered by a moving bird, a stacked chain is a structurally more stable configuration than a single chain; 3), chain-like structures of SP clusters disrupt under strong fields applied at oblique angles; and 4), reassemble on a timescale of hours to days (assuming a viscosity of the cell plasma η ∼ 1 P). Our results offer a novel mechanism for magnetic field perception and are in agreement with the response of birds observed after magnetic-pulse treatments, which have been conducted in the past to specifically test if ferrimagnetic material is involved in magnetoreception, but which have defied explanation so far. Our theoretical results are supported by experiments on a technical SP model system using a high-speed camera. We also offer new predictions that can be tested experimentally. PMID:15863473

  5. Toddlers’ Duration of Attention towards Putative Threat

    PubMed Central

    Kiel, Elizabeth J.; Buss, Kristin A.

    2010-01-01

    Although individual differences in reactions to novelty in the toddler years have been consistently linked to risk for developing anxious behavior, toddlers’ attention towards a novel, putatively threatening stimulus while in the presence of other enjoyable activities has rarely been examined as a precursor to such risk. The current study examined how attention towards an angry-looking gorilla mask in a room with alternative opportunities for play in 24-month-old toddlers predicted social inhibition when children entered kindergarten. Analyses examined attention to threat above and beyond and in interaction with both proximity to the mask and fear of novelty observed in other situations. Attention to threat interacted with proximity to the mask to predict social inhibition, such that attention to threat most strongly predicted social inhibition when toddlers stayed furthest from the mask. This relation occurred above and beyond the predictive relation between fear of novelty and social inhibition. Results are discussed within the broader literature of anxiety development and attentional processes in young children. PMID:21373365

  6. Biogenic Origin for Earth's Oldest Putative Microfossils

    SciTech Connect

    De Gregorio, B.; Sharp, T; Flynn, G; Wirick, S; Hervig, R

    2009-01-01

    Carbonaceous microbe-like features preserved within a local chert unit of the 3.5 Ga old Apex Basalt in Western Australia may represent some of the oldest evidence of life on Earth. However, the biogenicity of these putative microfossils has been called into question, primarily because the sample collection locality is a black, carbon-rich, brecciated chert dike representing an Archean submarine hydrothermal spring, suggesting a formation via an abiotic organic synthesis mechanism. Here we describe the macromolecular hydrocarbon structure, carbon bonding, functional group chemistry, and biotic element abundance of carbonaceous matter associated with these filamentous features. These characteristics are similar to those of biogenic kerogen from the ca. 1.9 Ga old Gunflint Formation. Although an abiotic origin cannot be entirely ruled out, it is unlikely that known abiotic synthesis mechanisms could recreate both the structural and compositional complexity of this ancient carbonaceous matter. Thus, we find that a biogenic origin for this material is more likely, implying that the Apex microbe-like features represent authentic biogenic organic matter.

  7. A Fruit-Specific Putative Dihydroflavonol 4-Reductase Gene Is Differentially Expressed in Strawberry during the Ripening Process1

    PubMed Central

    Moyano, Enriqueta; Portero-Robles, Ignacio; Medina-Escobar, Nieves; Valpuesta, Victoriano; Muñoz-Blanco, Juan; Luis Caballero, José

    1998-01-01

    A cDNA clone encoding a putative dihydroflavonol 4-reductase gene has been isolated from a strawberry (Fragaria × ananassa cv Chandler) DNA subtractive library. Northern analysis showed that the corresponding gene is predominantly expressed in fruit, where it is first detected during elongation (green stages) and then declines and sharply increases when the initial fruit ripening events occur, at the time of initiation of anthocyanin accumulation. The transcript can be induced in unripe green fruit by removing the achenes, and this induction can be partially inhibited by treatment of de-achened fruit with naphthylacetic acid, indicating that the expression of this gene is under hormonal control. We propose that the putative dihydroflavonol 4-reductase gene in strawberry plays a main role in the biosynthesis of anthocyanin during color development at the late stages of fruit ripening; during the first stages the expression of this gene could be related to the accumulation of condensed tannins. PMID:9625725

  8. Putative Lineage of Novel African Usutu Virus, Central Europe

    PubMed Central

    Cadar, Daniel; Bosch, Stefan; Jöst, Hanna; Börstler, Jessica; Garigliany, Mutien-Marie; Becker, Norbert

    2015-01-01

    We characterized the complete genome of a putative novel Usutu virus (USUV) strain (Usutu-BONN) detected in a dead blackbird from Germany. Genomic analysis revealed several unique amino acid substitutions among the polyprotein gene. Phylogenetic analyses demonstrated that Usutu-BONN constitutes a putative novel African USUV lineage, which was probably recently introduced to central Europe. PMID:26291923

  9. Identification of Putative Fallopian Tube Stem Cells

    PubMed Central

    Snegovskikh, Victoria; Mutlu, Levent; Massasa, Effi

    2014-01-01

    Stem cells are used to repair and regenerate multiple tissues in the adult. We have previously shown that stem cells play a significant role in mediating endometrial repair and tissue regeneration. We hypothesized that the oviduct may possess a similar population of stem cells that contribute to the maintenance of this tissue. Here we identify label-retaining cells (LRCs) in the murine oviduct which indicate the presence of a stem/progenitor cell population in this tissue as well. Two-day-old CD-1 mice were injected intraperitoneally with 5-bromo-2-deoxyuridine (BrdU) or vehicle control. Female animals (n = 36 for each group) were killed at 6 weeks post injection. Reproductive tracts were removed, specimens were embedded in paraffin, and 5-µ sections were prepared. Oviduct was identified by hematoxylin and eosin staining and morphology. Immunofluorescence studies were performed on serial sections tissues (n = 12 per animal) using antibodies against BrdU. Confocal microscopy was used to identify 4′,6-diamidino-2-phenylindole (DAPI)- and BrdU-stained nuclei. In the group of mice exposed to BrdU, we identified a population of LRCs in all specimens and not in controls. The putative stem cells are located at the base of each villi, suggesting the location of the stem cell niche. The number of DAPI-stained nuclei divided by the number of LRCs; LRCs constituted 0.5% of all nucleated cells. The oviduct contains a population of progenitor cells, likely used in the repair and regeneration of fallopian tube. Defective or insufficient stem cell reserve may underlie common tubal diseases, including hydrosalpinx and ectopic pregnancy. PMID:25305130

  10. Reaction mechanism of isoflavone O-methyltransferase: A theoretical investigation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cui, Feng-Chao; Pan, Xiao-Liang; Liu, Jing-Yao

    2011-01-01

    The methyl-transfer reaction mechanism catalyzed by Isoflavone O-methyl-transferase (IOMT) and the roles of several residues around the active site are investigated by employing density functional method. The calculations confirm that the proton transfer from daidzein to His257 occurs barrierlessly, and the methyl group is transferred from S-adenosyl-L-methionine (SAM) to phenolate ion in a single SN2 step with a barrier of 17.0 kcal/mol, consistent with experimental value. Glu318 and Asp288 play important roles in lowering the reaction barrier.