The conserved axial ligand methionine 121 from Pseudomonas aeruginosa azurin (Az) has been replaced by isostructural unnatural amino acid analogues, oxomethionine (OxM), difluoromethionine (DFM), trifluoromethionine (TFM), selenomethionine (SeM), and norleucine (Nle) using expressed protein ligation. The replacements resulted in <6 nm shifts in the S(CyS)-Cu charge transfer (CT) band in the electronic absorption spectra and <8 gauss changes in the copper hyperfine coupling constants (AII) in the X-band electron paramagnetic resonance spectra, suggesting that isostructural replacement of Met resulted in minimal structural perturbation of the copper center. The slight blue shifts of the CT band follow the trend of stronger electronegativity of the ligands. This trend is supported by 19F NMR studies of the fluorinated methionine analogues. However, the order of AII differs, suggesting additional factors influencing AII. In contrast to the small changes in the UV-vis and EPR spectra, a large variation of >227 mV in reduction potential was observed for the series of variants reported here. Additionally, a linear correlation was established between the reduction potentials and hydrophobicity of the variants. Extension of this analysis to other type 1 copper-containing proteins reveals a linear correlation between change in hydrophobicity and change in reduction potential, independent of the protein scaffold, experimental conditions, measurement techniques, and steric modifications. This analysis has also revealed for the first time high and low potential states for type 1 centers, and the difference may be attributable to destabilization of the protein fold by disruption of hydrophobic or hydrogen bonding interactions that stabilize the type 1 center.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Colloid and Surface Chemistry