Allosteric activation shifts the rate-limiting step in a short-form ATP phosphoribosyltransferase

Gemma Fisher, Catherine M. Thomson, Rozanne Stroek, Clarissa M Czekster, Jennifer S. Hirschi, Rafael G da Silva

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)


Short-form ATP phosphoribosyltransferase (ATPPRT) is a hetero-octameric allosteric enzyme comprising four catalytic subunits (HisGS) and four regulatory subunits (HisZ). ATPPRT catalyzes the Mg2+-dependent condensation of ATP and 5-phospho-α-d-ribosyl-1-pyrophosphate (PRPP) to generate N1-(5-phospho-β-d-ribosyl)-ATP (PRATP) and pyrophosphate, the first reaction of histidine biosynthesis. While HisGS is catalytically active on its own, its activity is allosterically enhanced by HisZ in the absence of histidine. In the presence of histidine, HisZ mediates allosteric inhibition of ATPPRT. Here, initial velocity patterns, isothermal titration calorimetry, and differential scanning fluorimetry establish a distinct kinetic mechanism for ATPPRT where PRPP is the first substrate to bind. AMP is an inhibitor of HisGS, but steady-state kinetics and 31P NMR spectroscopy demonstrate that ADP is an alternative substrate. Replacement of Mg2+ by Mn2+ enhances catalysis by HisGS but not by the holoenzyme, suggesting different rate-limiting steps for nonactivated and activated enzyme forms. Density functional theory calculations posit an SN2-like transition state stabilized by two equivalents of the metal ion. Natural bond orbital charge analysis points to Mn2+ increasing HisGS reaction rate via more efficient charge stabilization at the transition state. High solvent viscosity increases HisGS’s catalytic rate, but decreases the hetero-octamer’s, indicating that chemistry and product release are rate-limiting for HisGS and ATPPRT, respectively. This is confirmed by pre-steady-state kinetics, with a burst in product formation observed with the hetero-octamer but not with HisGS. These results are consistent with an activation mechanism whereby HisZ binding leads to a more active conformation of HisGS, accelerating chemistry beyond the product release rate.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)4357-4367
Issue number29
Early online date25 Jun 2018
Publication statusPublished - 24 Jul 2018


  • ATP phosphoribosyltransferase
  • Allostery
  • Density-functional theory
  • Pre-steady-state kinetics
  • Viscosity effects
  • Kinetic mechanism


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