Histone H2A and H4 N-Terminal Tails are Positioned by the MEP50 WD-Repeat Protein for Efficient Methylation by the PRMT5 Arginine Methyltransferase

Burgos et al., J. Biol. Chem. (2015) - PMID: 25713080

Product(s) used in this publication:  Histone Code Tools


The protein arginine methyltransferase PRMT5 is complexed with the WD repeat protein MEP50 (also known as Wdr77 or androgen coactivator p44) in vertebrates in a tetramer of heterodimers. MEP50 is hypothesized to be required for protein substrate recruitment to the catalytic domain of PRMT5. Here we demonstrate that the cross-dimer MEP50 is paired with its cognate PRMT5 molecule to promote histone methylation. We employed qualitative methylation assays and a novel ultrasensitive continuous assay to measure enzyme kinetics. We demonstrate that neither full-length human PRMT5 nor the Xenopus laevis PRMT5 catalytic domain has appreciable protein methyltransferase activity. We show that histones H4 and H3 bind PRMT5-MEP50 more efficiently compared with histone H2A(1-20) and H4(1-20) peptides. Histone binding is mediated through histone fold interactions as determined by competition experiments and by high density histone peptide array interaction studies. Nucleosomes are not a substrate for PRMT5-MEP50, consistent with the primary mode of interaction via the histone fold of H3-H4, obscured by DNA in the nucleosome. Mutation of a conserved arginine (Arg-42) on the MEP50 insertion loop impaired the PRMT5-MEP50 enzymatic efficiency by increasing its histone substrate Km, comparable with that of Caenorhabditis elegans PRMT5. We show that PRMT5-MEP50 prefers unmethylated substrates, consistent with a distributive model for dimethylation and suggesting discrete biological roles for mono- and dimethylarginine-modified proteins. We propose a model in which MEP50 and PRMT5 simultaneously engage the protein substrate, orienting its targeted arginine to the catalytic site.

© 2015 by The American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Inc.


Enzyme Kinetics; Enzyme Mechanism; Histone Methylation; Peptide Array; Protein Arginine N-methyltransferase 5 (PRMT5); WD Repeat

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