Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology, Vol.104, No.2, 653-660, 2020
Characterization of protein interaction surface on fatty acyl selectivity of starter condensation domain in lipopeptide biosynthesis
Lipopeptides are important non-ribosomal peptide synthetases (NRPSs) products with broad therapeutic potential in biotechnology and biopharmaceutical applications. Fatty acyl modifications in N-terminal of lipopeptides have attracted wide interest in the engineering processes of altered fatty acyl selectivity. In this study, we focused on the starter condensation domain of antibiotic A54145 (lptC1) and its indiscriminate selectivity of fatty acyl substrates, which results in multi-component products. Using in silico analysis, five site-directed mutations at protein-protein interface were identified with altered activity and selectivity towards wild type lptC1. The variants Y149W and A330T exhibited changed substrate selectivity to prefer longer branched chain fatty acyl substrate, while T16A and A350D showed improved selectivity for shorter linear chain fatty acyl substrates. Subsequently, molecular dynamics (MD) simulations were performed to analyze the impact of these residues on the changes of catalytic activity and conformation. Through in silico analysis, the altered binding free energy were coincident with the corresponding activity performance of the variants, and surface forces indicated that other factors or processes may influence the activity and selectivity. Moreover, the MD results revealed even altered active center conformations, implying the importance of these interface residues affected on distant active center thus reflected to catalysis activity. Based on the biochemistry and computational results, our work provides detailed insights from molecular and dynamics aspects into the role of C1's interface residues during complex NRPS biosynthesis machinery, prompting further rational engineering for lipopeptide catalysis.