Publication Details

Category Text Publication
Reference Category Journals
DOI 10.1074/jbc.M806134200
Title (Primary) Structural and biophysical characterization of the proteins interacting with the herpes simplex virus 1 origin of replication
Author Manolaridis, I.; Mumtsidu, E.; Konarev, P.; Makhov, A.M.; Fullerton, S.W.; Sinz, A.; Kalkhof, S.; McGeehan, J.E.; Cary, P.D.; Griffith, J.D.; Svergun, D.; Kneale, G.G.; Tucker, P.A.
Source Titel Journal of Biological Chemistry
Year 2009
Department PROTEOM
Volume 284
Issue 24
Page From 16343
Page To 16353
Language englisch

The C terminus of the herpes simplex virus type 1 origin-binding protein, UL9ct, interacts directly with the viral single-stranded DNA-binding protein ICP8. We show that a 60-amino acid C-terminal deletion mutant of ICP8 (ICP8ΔC) also binds very strongly to UL9ct. Using small angle x-ray scattering, the low resolution solution structures of UL9ct alone, in complex with ICP8ΔC, and in complex with a 15-mer double-stranded DNA containing Box I of the origin of replication are described. Size exclusion chromatography, analytical ultracentrifugation, and electrophoretic mobility shift assays, backed up by isothermal titration calorimetry measurements, are used to show that the stoichiometry of the UL9ct-dsDNA15-mer complex is 2:1 at micromolar protein concentrations. The reaction occurs in two steps with initial binding of UL9ct to DNA (Kd ∼ 6 nm) followed by a second binding event (Kd ∼ 0.8 nm). It is also shown that the stoichiometry of the ternary UL9ct-ICP8ΔC-dsDNA15-mer complex is 2:1:1, at the concentrations used in the different assays. Electron microscopy indicates that the complex assembled on the extended origin, oriS, rather than Box I alone, is much larger. The results are consistent with a simple model whereby a conformational switch of the UL9 DNA-binding domain upon binding to Box I allows the recruitment of a UL9-ICP8 complex by interaction between the UL9 DNA-binding domains.

The initiation of DNA replication for most double-stranded DNA (dsDNA)6 viral genomes begins with the recognition of the origin by specific origin-binding proteins. The herpes simplex virus type 1 (HSV-1) genome encodes seven proteins required for origin-dependent DNA replication. These are the DNA polymerase (UL30) and its accessory protein (UL42), a heterotrimeric helicase-primase complex (UL5, UL8, and UL52), the single-stranded DNA-binding protein (ICP8 or UL29), and the origin-binding protein (UL9) (reviewed in Ref. 1). HSV-1 contains three functional origins, oriL and two copies of oriS. OriS, which is about 80 bp in length, consists of three UL9 recognition sites, in Boxes I, II, and III, which are arranged in two overlapping palindromes (2). Box I and Box III are part of an evolutionarily conserved palindrome that forms a stable hairpin in single-stranded DNA, which may be important in the origin rearrangement (3) during initiation of replication. Box I and II are separated by an AT-rich spacer sequence, which varies in length and nucleotide composition between the different members of the α-herpesvirus subfamily (2, 46).

UL9 is a homodimer in solution, and EM studies, with UL9 bound to oriS, indicate the existence of a dimer or pair of dimers assembled on oriS (7). Several reports indicate that UL9 can physically interact not only with ICP8 (8) but also with other members of the HSV-1 replication complex, including UL8 (9) and UL42 (10). Thus UL9 functions as a docking protein to recruit these essential replication proteins to the viral origins. ICP8 stimulates the helicase activity of UL9 (11, 12) and binds to its C-terminal 27-aa residues (13). In the presence of ICP8, UL9 will open dsDNA containing Box I, leading to a conformational change in the origin, thus facilitating unwinding (1416). As stated above, the changes in DNA conformation in the complete oriS may be more complex (3). Recently, it has been suggested that single-stranded oriS folds into a unique and evolutionarily conserved conformation, oriS*, which is stably bound by UL9. oriS* contains a hairpin formed by complementary base pairing between Box I and Box III in oriS (17). UL9, in the presence of the single-stranded DNA-binding protein ICP8, can convert an 80-bp double-stranded minimal oriS fragment to oriS* and form a UL9-oriS* complex. The formation of a UL9-oriS* complex requires ATP hydrolysis (18). Therefore, the UL9-oriS* complex may serve as an assembly site for the herpesvirus replisome. Macao et al. (3) proposed a model in which full-length UL9 would be required to adopt a different conformation when binding to oriS or oriS*. The implication is that UL9 partially unwinds and introduces a hairpin into the origin of replication and that the formation of oriS* is aided, in some way, by ICP8 and requires ATP hydrolysis. Macao et al. (3) suggest that the length of the single-stranded tail of the probe DNA determines the stoichiometry of the UL9-DNA complex. oriS may bind two molecules of UL9, whereas oriS* may only bind one because the hairpin formation prevents the second interaction.

Photo-cross-linking studies have shown that, although the UL9 protein binds Box I as a dimer, only one of the two monomers contacts Box I, suggesting that the C terminus of UL9 undergoes a conformational change upon binding to Box I (19). The results reported here are consistent with this observation. To date there is no three-dimensional structural information available on the full-length UL9 or either of the functionally characterized (helicase and DNA binding) domains. The ability to adopt different conformations and a tendency to proteolytic degradation may be responsible for this. It has been shown that UL9 binds with very high specificity to the Box I through its DNA-binding domain, consisting of the C-terminal 317 aa (UL9ct) (20, 21). Although the importance of the binding between UL9ct and oriS for the viral life cycle is well established, the mechanism behind this interaction still remains unclear. Even though UL9ct exists as a monomer in solution, uncertainty remains as to whether one or two molecules bind to a single Box I recognition sequence. Some reports have suggested that one UL9ct molecule binds to a single copy of the sequence (2224), whereas others have proposed that UL9ct forms a dimer when bound to DNA (25, 26). This apparent difference may well result from the different protein concentrations used in different assays/experiments, which in turn highlights the difficulty of translating in vitro equilibrium experiments into cellular nonequilibrium situations.

A few years ago, the crystal structure of a 60-residue C-terminal deletion mutant of ICP8 (ICP8ΔC) was determined to 3 Å resolution (Protein Data Bank code 1URJ (27)). The structure of ICP8ΔC consists of a large N-terminal domain (aa 9–1038) and a smaller entirely helical C-terminal domain (aa 1049–1120) connected to the N-terminal domain by a disordered linker (aa 1038–1049) spanning around 18 Å in the crystal structure. ICP8 preferentially binds ssDNA over dsDNA in a nonsequence-specific and cooperative manner (28). ICP8 is a zinc metalloprotein containing one zinc atom per molecule, which is coordinated by three cysteines (Cys-499, Cys-502, and Cys-510) and a histidine (His-512) (27).

In this study, we show that the 60-amino acid C-terminal deletion of ICP8 (ICP8ΔC) binds strongly to UL9ct. We present three low resolution structures in solution using small angle x-ray scattering as follows: that of the UL9ct alone, in complex with ICP8ΔC, and in complex with a 15-mer dsDNA (dsDNA15-mer) containing the Box I sequence. Using these data and a variety of biophysical techniques, we demonstrate that the stoichiometries of the UL9ct-dsDNA15-mer and UL9ct-ICP8ΔC-dsDNA15-mer complexes are 2:1 and 2:1:1, respectively, at the micromolar protein concentrations used in this study. Using EM we visualize the assembly of the ICP8ΔC-UL9ct complex on oriS and estimate the size of the complex.

Persistent UFZ Identifier
Manolaridis, I., Mumtsidu, E., Konarev, P., Makhov, A.M., Fullerton, S.W., Sinz, A., Kalkhof, S., McGeehan, J.E., Cary, P.D., Griffith, J.D., Svergun, D., Kneale, G.G., Tucker, P.A. (2009):
Structural and biophysical characterization of the proteins interacting with the herpes simplex virus 1 origin of replication
J. Biol. Chem. 284 (24), 16343 - 16353 10.1074/jbc.M806134200