C-terminal farnesyl cysteine carboxyl methylation has been known to be the last step in the post-translational modification processes of several important signal transduction proteins in eukaryotes including ras related GTP binding proteins and the γ-subunit of heterotrimeric G proteins. Protein farnesyl cysteine carboxyl methyltransferase (PFCCMT; EC, 18.104.22.168) catalyzing the reaction is well characterized as being stimulated by guanosine 5'-O-(3-thiotriphosphate) (GTPγS) and suppressed by N-acetyl-S-farnesyl-L-cysteine (AFC). As an initial step to understand the physiological significance of the process, we attempted to purify the enzyme, which was partially purified 130-fold (specific activity, 143 pmol of methyl group transferred/min/mg of protein) with yield of 1.8% after purification by fast protein liquid chromatography (FPLC) on a Superdex 75 column. The enzyme was further purified with non denaturing polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis (ND-PAGE) and sodium dodecyl sulfate polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis (SDS-PAGE). The molecular weight of PFCCMT was determined to be about 30 kDa based on Superdex 75 FPLC as well as photoaffinity labelling with S-adenosyl-L-[methyl-3H] methionine ([methyl-3H]SAM). The partially purified enzyme (Superdex 75 eluate) was found to be characteristically affected by GTPγS, being activated about 40-fold in 2 mM, in contrast to ATP which did not show any effect on enzyme activity. Meanwhile, the enzyme was found to be markedly inhibited by AFC, reaching 0 activity in 2 mM. These observations strongly suggested that the partially purified enzyme was PFCCMT.
- Partial purification of farnesylated cysteine carboxyl methyltransferase
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Molecular Medicine
- Molecular Biology
- Clinical Biochemistry