All cells obtain 2′-deoxyribonucleotides for DNA synthesis through the activity of a ribonucleotide reductase (RNR). The class I RNRs found in humans and pathogenic bacteria differ in (i) use of Fe(II), Mn(II), or both for activation of the dinuclear-metallocofactor subunit, β; (ii) reaction of the reduced dimetal center with dioxygen or superoxide for this activation; (iii) requirement (or lack thereof) for a flavoprotein activase, NrdI, to provide the superoxide from O2; and (iv) use of either a stable tyrosyl radical or a high-valent dimetal cluster to initiate each turnover by oxidizing a cysteine residue in the α subunit to a radical (Cys•). The use of manganese by bacterial class I, subclass b-d RNRs, which contrasts with the exclusive use of iron by the eukaryotic Ia enzymes, appears to be a countermeasure of certain pathogens against iron deprivation imposed by their hosts. Here, we report a metal-free type of class I RNR (subclass e) from two human pathogens. The Cys• in its α subunit is generated by a stable, tyrosine-derived dihydroxyphenylalanine radical (DOPA•) in β. The three-electron oxidation producing DOPA• occurs in Escherichia coli only if the β is coexpressed with the NrdI activase encoded adjacently in the pathogen genome. The independence of this new RNR from transition metals, or the requirement for a single metal ion only transiently for activation, may afford the pathogens an even more potent countermeasure against transition metal-directed innate immunity.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Number of pages||6|
|Journal||Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America|
|State||Published - Oct 2 2018|
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes