The novel function of a short region K253xRxxxD259 conserved in the exonuclease domain of hyperthermostable DNA polymerase I from Pyrococcus horikoshii.

Abstract:

The DNA polymerase gene of the hyperthermophile Pyrococcus horikoshii was successfully overexpressed after removing an intein. The importance of an amino acid sequence around a highly conserved Asp was studied by site-directed mutagenesis. The results indicated that Lys253, Arg255, and Asp259 form a novel functional motif, K253xRxxxD259 (outside known motifs Exo I, II, and III), that is important not only for exonuclease activity but also for polymerizing activity, confirming functional interdependence between the polymerase and exonuclease domains. The short loop region, K253G254R255, probably contributes to binding to DNA substrates. Moreover, the negative charge and the side-chain length of D259 might play a supporting role in coordinating the conserved Mg2+ to the correct position at the active center in the exonuclease domain.

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