Catalytic Site Constraints in the P450s Mediating Loganic Acid (7DLH) and Secologanic Acid Synthesis (SLAS) in Camptotheca

Priya Rao, Mark A. Yaroslavsky, Justin C. Miller, Mary A. Schuler

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Terpene indole alkaloids (TIAs) are plant-derived natural products synthesized in low levels in medicinal plants such as Catharanthus roseus and Camptotheca acuminata. TIA pathways species utilize several CYP72A subfamily members to form loganic acid from 7-deoxyloganic acid (a simple hydroxylation) as well as secologanin and secologanic acid from loganin and loganic acid (a C-C bond scission). Divergences in the specificities of these P450s have allowed Camptotheca secologanic acid synthases (SLASs) to become bifunctional enzymes capable of performing both reactions. In contrast, Catharanthus 7-deoxyloganic acid hydroxylase (7DLH) and secologanin synthase (SLS) have remained monofunctional enzymes capable either of monooxygenation or C-C bond scission. Our in vitro reconstitutions have now demonstrated that Camptotheca also contains a monofunctional 7DLH capable only of hydroxylating 7-deoxyloganic acid. Mutageneses aimed at evaluating residues important for the tight specificity of Camptotheca 7DLH (CYP72A729) and the broad specificity of SLAS (CYP72A564) have identified several residues where reciprocal switches substantially affect their activities: Lys128His in 7DLH increases hydroxylation of 7-deoxyloganic acid, and His132Lys in SLAS decreases this hydroxylation and C-C bond scissions of loganic acid and loganin; Gly321Ser in 7DLH does not affect hydroxylation of 7-deoxyloganic acid, whereas Ser324Gly in SLAS significantly increases C-C bond scission of loganic acid; Asp332Glu in the acid-alcohol pair of 7DLH increases hydroxylation of 7-deoxyloganic acid, whereas Glu335Asp in SLAS completely eliminates both of its activities. These mutations that enhance or eliminate these respective activities have significant potential to aid engineering efforts aimed at increasing TIA production in cell cultures, microbial systems, and/or other plants.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2763-2774
Number of pages12
Issue number18
StatePublished - Sep 19 2023

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry


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