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Structure-function analysis of the UDP-N-acetyl-D-galactosamine:polypeptide N-acetylgalactosaminyltransferase. Essential residues lie in a predicted active site cleft resembling a lactose repressor fold.

Hagen F.K., Hazes B., Raffo R., deSa D., Tabak L.A.

Mucin-type O-glycosylation is initiated by a family of UDP-GalNAc:polypeptide N-acetylgalactosaminyltransferases (ppGaNTases). Based on sequence relationships with divergent proteins, the ppGaNTases can be subdivided into three putative domains: each putative domain contains a characteristic sequence motif. The 112-amino acid glycosyltransferase 1 (GT1) motif represents the first half of the catalytic unit and contains a short aspartate-any residue-histidine (DXH) or aspartate-any residue-aspartate (DXD)-like sequence. Secondary structure predictions and structural threading suggest that the GT1 motif forms a 5-stranded parallel beta-sheet flanked by 4 alpha-helices, which resembles the first domain of the lactose repressor. Four invariant carboxylates and a histidine residue are predicted to lie at the C-terminal end of three beta-strands and line the active site cleft. Site-directed mutagenesis of murine ppGaNTase-T1 reveals that conservative mutations at these 5 positions result in products with no detectable enzyme activity (D156Q, D209N, and H211D) or <1% activity (E127Q and E213Q). The second half of the catalytic unit contains a DXXXXXWGGENXE motif (positions 310-322) which is also found in beta1,4-galactosyltransferases (termed the Gal/GalNAc-T motif). Mutants of carboxylates within this motif express either no detectable activity, 1% or 2% activity (E319Q, E322Q, and D310N, respectively). Mutagenesis of highly conserved (but not invariant) carboxylates produces only modest alterations in enzyme activity. Mutations in the C-terminal 128-amino acid ricin-like lectin motif do not alter the enzyme's catalytic properties.

J. Biol. Chem. 274:6797-6803(1999) [PubMed] [Europe PMC]

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