Structures of the alkanesulfonate monooxygenase MsuD provide insight into C-S bond cleavage, substrate scope, and an unexpected role for the tetramer.

Publication Type:

Journal Article


J Biol Chem, Volume 297, Issue 1, p.100823 (2021)


<p>Bacterial two-component flavin-dependent monooxygenases cleave the stable C-S bond of environmental and anthropogenic organosulfur compounds. The monooxygenase MsuD converts methanesulfonate (MS) to sulfite, completing the sulfur assimilation process during sulfate starvation, but the mechanism of this conversion remains unclear. To explore the mechanism of C-S bond cleavage, we report a series of crystal structures of MsuD from Pseudomonas fluorescens in different liganded states. This report provides the first crystal structures of an alkanesulfonate monooxygenase with a bound flavin and alkanesulfonate, elucidating the roles of the active site lid, the protein C terminus, and an active site loop in flavin and/or alkanesulfonate binding. These structures position MS closest&nbsp;to the flavin N5 position, consistent with an N5-(hydro)peroxyflavin mechanism rather than a classical C4a-(hydro)peroxyflavin mechanism. A fully enclosed active site is observed in the ternary complex, mediated by interchain interaction of the C terminus at the tetramer interface. These structures identify an unexpected function of the protein C terminus in this protein family in stabilizing tetramer formation and the alkanesulfonate-binding site. Spurred by interest from the crystal structures, we conducted biochemical assays and molecular docking that redefine MsuD as a small- to medium-chain alkanesulfonate monooxygenase. Functional mutations verify the sulfonate-binding site and reveal the critical importance of the protein C terminus for monooxygenase function. These findings reveal a deeper understanding of MsuD&#39;s functionality at the molecular level and consequently how it operates within its role as part of the sulfur assimilation pathway.</p>

7JV3 for MsuD, 7K64 for binary-titrated MsuD, 7JYB for binary-soak MsuD, 7K14 for ternary-soak MsuD, and 7JW9 for ternary-MsuD