2019 - Mutation of two key aspartate residues alters stoichiometry of the NhaB Na+/H+ exchanger from Klebsiella pneumoniae

Icon N1   SURFE²R N1 publication in Nature Scientific Reports (2019)

Patiño-Ruiz M., Fendler K., & Călinescu O.

Nature Scientific Reports (2019) 9: Article Number: 15390


Bacterial NhaB Na+/H+ exchangers belonging to the Ion Transporter superfamily are poorly characterized in contrast to Na+/H+ exchangers of the Cation Proton Antiporter superfamily which have NhaA from Escherichia coli as a prominent member. For a more detailed understanding of the intricacies of the exchanger’s transport mechanism, mutational studies are essential. Therefore, we mutated two protonatable residues present in the putative transmembrane region of NhaB from Klebsiella pneumoniae (KpNhaB), which could serve as substrate binding sites, Asp146 and Asp404, to either glutamate or alanine and analyzed transport function and stability of the mutants using electrophysiological and fluorimetric techniques. While mutation of either Asp residue to Glu only had slight to moderate effects on the transport activity of the exchanger, the mutations D404A and D146A, in particular, had more profound effects on the transport function. Furthermore, a double mutant, D146A/D404A, exhibited a remarkable behavior at alkaline pH, where recorded electrical currents changed polarity, showing steady-state transport with a stoichiometry of H+:Na+ < 1, as opposed to the H+:Na+ > 1 stoichiometry of the WT. Thus, we showed that Asp146 and Asp404 are part of the substrate binding site(s) of KpNhaB and engineered a Na+/H+ exchanger with a variable stoichiometry.

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