Ultrafast ligand rebinding in the heme domain of the oxygen sensors FixL and Dos: General regulatory implications for heme-based sensors

Abstract : Heme-based oxygen sensors are part of ligand-specific two-component regulatory systems, which have both a relatively low oxygen affinity and a low oxygen-binding rate. To get insight into the dynamical aspects underlying these features and the ligand specificity of the signal transduction from the heme sensor domain, we used femtosecond spectroscopy to study ligand dynamics in the heme domains of the oxygen sensors FixL from Bradyrhizobium japonicum (FixLH) and Dos from Escherichia coli (DosH). The heme coordination with different ligands and the corresponding ground-state heme spectra of FixLH are similar to myoglobin (Mb). After photodissociation, the excited-state properties and ligand-rebinding kinetics are qualitatively similar for FixLH and Mb for CO and NO as ligands. in contrast to Mb, the transient spectra of FixLH after photodissociation of ligands are distorted compared with the ground-state difference spectra, indicating differences in the heme environment with respect to the unliganded state. This distortion is particularly marked for O-2. Strikingly, heme-O-2 recombination occurs with efficiency unprecedented for heme proteins, in approximate to5 ps for approximate to90% of the dissociated O-2. For DosH-O-2, which shows 60% sequence similarity to FixLH, but where signal detection and transmission presumably are quite different, a similarly fast recombination was found with an even higher yield. Altogether these results indicate that in these sensors the heme pocket acts as a ligand-specific trap. The general implications for the functioning of heme-based ligand sensors are discussed in the light of recent studies on heme-based NO and CO sensors.
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Ursula Liebl, Latifa Bouzhir-Sima, Michel Négrerie, Jean-Louis Martin, Marten Vos. Ultrafast ligand rebinding in the heme domain of the oxygen sensors FixL and Dos: General regulatory implications for heme-based sensors. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America , National Academy of Sciences, 2002, 99 (20), pp.12771. ⟨10.1073/pnas.192311699⟩. ⟨hal-00837023⟩

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