Karen N. Allen

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The HAD (haloacid dehalogenase) superfamily includes phosphoesterases, ATPases, phosphonatases, dehalogenases, and sugar phosphomutases acting on a remarkably diverse set of substrates. The availability of numerous crystal structures of representatives belonging to diverse branches of the HAD superfamily provides us with a unique opportunity to reconstruct(More)
It is proposed that enzymic phosphoryl-transfer reactions occur by concerted, step-wise, associative (phosphorane-intermediate) or dissociative (metaphosphate-intermediate) mechanisms, as dictated by the catalytic scaffold and the reactants. During the evolution of a phosphotransferase family, the mechanism of the phosphoryl-transfer reaction is in constant(More)
Congenital disorder of glycosylation type 1a (CDG-1a) is a congenital disease characterized by severe defects in nervous system development. It is caused by mutations in alpha-phosphomannomutase (of which there are two isozymes, alpha-PMM1 and alpha-PPM2). Here we report the x-ray crystal structures of human alpha-PMM1 in the open conformation, with and(More)
The Clostridium botulinum neurotoxin serotype A light chain (BoNT/A-LC) is a Zn(II)-dependent metalloprotease that blocks the release of acetylcholine at the neuromuscular junction by cleaving SNAP-25, one of the SNARE proteins required for exocytosis. Because of the potential for use of the toxin in bioterrorism and the increasingly widespread application(More)
Enzymes provide enormous rate enhancements, unmatched by any other type of catalyst. The stabilization of high-energy states along the reaction coordinate is the crux of the catalytic power of enzymes. We report the atomic-resolution structure of a high-energy reaction intermediate stabilized in the active site of an enzyme. Crystallization of(More)
The haloacid dehalogenase (HAD) superfamily includes a variety of enzymes that catalyze the cleavage of substrate C-Cl, P-C, and P-OP bonds via nucleophilic substitution pathways. All members possess the alpha/beta core domain, and many also possess a small cap domain. The active site of the core domain is formed by four loops (corresponding to sequence(More)
Phosphonoacetaldehyde hydrolase (phosphonatase) catalyzes the hydrolytic P-C bond cleavage of phosphonoacetaldehyde (Pald) to form orthophosphate and acetaldehyde. The reaction proceeds via a Schiff-base intermediate formed between Lys-53 and the Pald carbonyl. The x-ray crystal structures of the wild-type phosphonatase complexed with Mg(II) alone or with(More)
Hereditary fructose intolerance (HFI) is a potentially lethal inborn error in metabolism caused by mutations in the aldolase B gene, which is critical for gluconeogenesis and fructose metabolism. The most common mutation, which accounts for 53% of HFI alleles identified worldwide, results in substitution of Pro for Ala at position 149. Structural and(More)
Acetoacetate decarboxylase (AADase) has long been cited as the prototypical example of the marked shifts in the pK(a) values of ionizable groups that can occur in an enzyme active site. In 1966, it was hypothesized that in AADase the origin of the large pK(a) perturbation (-4.5 log units) observed in the nucleophilic Lys 115 results from the proximity of(More)
Fructose-1,6-(bis)phosphate aldolase is a ubiquitous enzyme that catalyzes the reversible aldol cleavage of fructose-1,6-(bis)phosphate and fructose 1-phosphate to dihydroxyacetone phosphate and either glyceral-dehyde-3-phosphate or glyceraldehyde, respectively. Vertebrate aldolases exist as three isozymes with different tissue distributions and kinetics:(More)