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Open Access Publications from the University of California

A continuous fluorescence assay for the characterization of Nudix hydrolases.

  • Author(s): Xu, Anting
  • Desai, Anna M
  • Brenner, Steven E
  • Kirsch, Jack F
  • et al.

The common substrate structure for the functionally diverse Nudix protein superfamily is nucleotide-diphosphate-X, where X is a large variety of leaving groups. The substrate specificity is known for less than 1% of the 29,400 known members. Most activities result in the release of an inorganic phosphate ion or of a product bearing a terminal phosphate moiety. Reactions have typically been monitored by a modification of the discontinuous Fiske-SubbaRow assay, which is relatively insensitive and slow. We report here the development of a continuous fluorescence assay that enables the rapid and accurate determination of substrate specificities in a 96-well format. We used this novel assay to confirm the reported substrate characterizations of MutT and NudD of Escherichia coli and to characterize DR_1025 of Deinococcus radiodurans and MM_0920 of Methanosarcina mazei. Novel findings enabled by the new assay include the following. First, in addition to the well-characterized hydrolysis of 8-oxo-dGTP at the α-β position, MutT cleaves at the β-γ phosphate bond at a rate of 3% of that recorded for hydrolysis at the α-β position. Second, MutT also catalyzes the hydrolysis of 5-methyl-dCTP. Third, 8-oxo-dGTP was observed to be the best substrate for DR_1025 of the 41 compounds screened.

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