Analysis of the LAGLIDADG interface of the monomeric homing endonuclease I-DmoI. Academic Article uri icon


  • The general structural fold of the LAGLIDADG endonuclease family consists of two similar alpha/beta domains (alphabetabetaalphabetabetaalpha) that assemble either as homodimers or monomers with the domains related by pseudo-two-fold symmetry. At the center of this symmetry is the closely packed LAGLIDADG two-helix bundle that forms the main inter- or intra-molecular contact region between the domains of single- or double-motif proteins, respectively. In this work, we further examine the role of the LAGLIDADG residues involved in the helix-helix interaction. The interchangeability of the LAGLIDADG helix interaction was explored by grafting interfacial residues from the homodimeric I-CreI into the corresponding positions in the monomeric I-DmoI. The resulting LAGLIDADG exchange mutant is partially active, preferring to nick dsDNA rather than making the customary double-strand break. A series of partial revertants within the mutated LAGLIDADG region are shown to restore cleavage activity to varying degrees resulting in one I-DmoI mutant that is more active than wild-type I-DmoI. The phenotype of some of these mutants was reconciled on the basis of similarity to the GxxxG helix interaction found in transmembrane proteins. Additionally, a split variant of I-DmoI was created, demonstrating that the LAGLIDADG helices of I-DmoI are capable of forming and maintaining the protein-protein interface in trans to create an active heterodimer.

publication date

  • 2004