Das, Amit; Gerlits, Oksana; Parks, Jerry M.; Langan, Paul; Kovalevsky, Andrey; Heller, William T.
Protein Kinase A Catalytic Subunit Primed for Action: Time-Lapse Crystallography of Michaelis Complex Formation
STRUCTURE, 23:2331-2340, DEC 1 2015

The catalytic subunit of the cyclic AMP-dependent protein kinase A (PKAc) catalyzes the transfer of the gamma-phosphate of bound Mg(2)ATP to a serine or threonine residue of a protein substrate. Here, timelapse X-ray crystallography was used to capture a series of complexes of PKAc with an oligopeptide substrate and unreacted Mg(2)ATP, including the Michaelis complex, that reveal important geometric rearrangements in and near the active site preceding the phosphoryl transfer reaction. Contrary to the prevailing view, Mg2+ binds first to the M1 site as a complex with ATP and is followed by Mg2+ binding to the M2 site. Concurrently, the target serine hydroxyl of the peptide substrate rotates away from the active site toward the bulk solvent, which breaks the hydrogen bond with D166. Lastly, the serine hydroxyl of the substrate rotates back toward D166 to form the Michaelis complex with the active site primed for phosphoryl transfer.


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