For interrogation of enzyme-bound intermediates in nonribosomal peptide synthetases (NRPSs), mass spectrometry is used to read out the kinetics and substrate specificity of this medicinally important class of enzymes. The protein HMWP2 (230 kDa) catalyzes 11 chemical reactions, four of which could be resolved by fast quench approaches combined with mass spectrometry. The rate of complex intermediate accumulation at the PCP1 active site was observed to occur with a rate of 19 s-1, with the rate of cysteine acylation faster than that of intermediate translocation. Use of alternative substrates for salicylic acid (at the ArCP carrier domain) and L-cysteine (at the PCP1 carrier domain) revealed a high penalty for omission of the salicyl alcohol. For some substrates, large discrepancies were found between prior adenylation assays and the current MS-based readouts. Indirect evidence for condensation via a thiolate attack (vs an amino group) was also accumulated. This is the first report to correlate the percent occupancy of multiple active sites in parallel with kinetic and structural resolution of intermediates and provides new evidence of interdomain and intermodule communication within thiotemplate assembly lines.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Colloid and Surface Chemistry