- Since the advent of protein crystallography, atomic-level macromolecular structures have provided a basis to understand biological function. Enzymologists use detailed structural insights on ligand coordination, interatomic distances, and positioning of catalytic amino acids to rationalize the underlying electronic reaction mechanisms. Often the proteins in question catalyze redox reactions using metal cofactors that are explicitly intertwined with their function. In these cases, the exact nature of the coordination sphere and the oxidation state of the metal is of utmost importance.
- Oxidation of halides and thiocyanate by heme peroxidases to antimicrobial oxidants is an important cornerstone in the innate immune system of mammals. Interestingly, phylogenetic and physiological studies suggest that homologous peroxidases are already present in mycetozoan eukaryotes such as Dictyostelium discoideum. This social amoeba kills bacteria via phagocytosis for nutrient acquisition at its single-cell stage and for antibacterial defense at its multicellular stages. Here, we demonstrate that peroxidase A from D.
- Myeloperoxidase (MPO) is synthesized by neutrophil and monocyte precursor cells and contributes to host defense by mediating microbial killing. Although several steps in MPO biosynthesis and processing have been elucidated, many questions remained, such as the structure-function relationship of monomeric unprocessed proMPO versus the mature dimeric MPO and the functional role of the propeptide. Here we have presented the first and high resolution (at 1.25 Å) crystal structure of proMPO and its solution structure obtained by small-angle X-ray scattering.