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Cyclotides are a class of cyclic disulfide-rich peptides found in plants that have been adopted as a molecular scaffold for pharmaceutical applications due to their inherent stability and ability to penetrate cell membranes. For research purposes, they are usually produced and cyclized synthetically, but there are concerns around the cost and environmental impact of large-scale chemical synthesis. One strategy to improve this is to combine a recombinant production system with native enzyme-mediated cyclization. Asparaginyl endopeptidases (AEPs) are enzymes that can act as peptide ligases in certain plants to facilitate cyclotide maturation. One of these ligases, OaAEP1b, originates from the cyclotide-producing plant, Oldenlandia affinis, and can be produced recombinantly for use in vitro as an alternative to chemical cyclization of recombinant substrates. However, not all engineered cyclotides are compatible with AEP-mediated cyclization because new pharmaceutical epitopes often replace the most flexible region of the peptide, where the native cyclization site is located. Here we redesign a popular cyclotide grafting scaffold, MCoTI-II, to incorporate an AEP cyclization site located away from the usual grafting region. We demonstrate the incorporation of a foreign peptide sequence in the most flexible region of MCoTI-II while maintaining AEP compatibility, where the two were previously mutually exclusive. We anticipate that our AEP-compatible scaffold, based on the most popular cyclotide for pharmaceutical applications, will be useful in designing bioactive cyclotides that are compatible with AEP-mediated cyclization and will therefore open up the possibility of larger scale enzyme-mediated production of recombinant or synthetic cyclotides alike.
This article was published in the following journal.
Name: ACS chemical biology
Cyclotides are cyclic peptides, present in several plant families, that show diverse biological properties. Structurally, cyclotides share a distinctive head-to-tail circular knotted topology of three...
Asparaginyl endopeptidases (AEPs) catalyze the key backbone cyclization step during the biosynthesis of plant-derived cyclic peptides. Here, we report the identification of two AEPs from Momordica coc...
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An enzyme that catalyzes the cyclization of hydroxymethylbilane to yield UROPORPHYRINOGEN III and water. It is the fourth enzyme in the 8-enzyme biosynthetic pathway of HEME, and is encoded by UROS gene. Mutations of UROS gene result in CONGENITAL ERYTHROPOIETIC PORPHYRIA.
The body's defense mechanism against foreign organisms or substances and deviant native cells. It includes the humoral immune response and the cell-mediated response and consists of a complex of interrelated cellular, molecular, and genetic components.
The removal of a circular disk of the cranium. It is performed with a trephine, a small circular saw with a center pin mounted on a hollow metal shaft to which is attached a transverse handle. (Random House Unabridged Dictionary, 2d ed)
Any of the covalently closed DNA molecules found in bacteria, many viruses, mitochondria, plastids, and plasmids. Small, polydisperse circular DNA's have also been observed in a number of eukaryotic organisms and are suggested to have homology with chromosomal DNA and the capacity to be inserted into, and excised from, chromosomal DNA. It is a fragment of DNA formed by a process of looping out and deletion, containing a constant region of the mu heavy chain and the 3'-part of the mu switch region. Circular DNA is a normal product of rearrangement among gene segments encoding the variable regions of immunoglobulin light and heavy chains, as well as the T-cell receptor. (Riger et al., Glossary of Genetics, 5th ed & Segen, Dictionary of Modern Medicine, 1992)
An enzyme that catalyzes the conversion of linear RNA to a circular form by the transfer of the 5'-phosphate to the 3'-hydroxyl terminus. It also catalyzes the covalent joining of two polyribonucleotides in phosphodiester linkage. EC 184.108.40.206.
Enzymes are proteins that catalyze (i.e., increase the rates of) chemical reactions. In enzymatic reactions, the molecules at the beginning of the process, called substrates, are converted into different molecules, called products. Almost all chemical re...