Michael Proudfoot

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Haloacid dehalogenase (HAD)-like hydrolases are a vast superfamily of largely uncharacterized enzymes, with a few members shown to possess phosphatase, beta-phosphoglucomutase, phosphonatase, and dehalogenase activities. Using a representative set of 80 phosphorylated substrates, we characterized the substrate specificities of 23 soluble HADs encoded in the(More)
Inorganic polyphosphate (polyP) is a linear polymer of tens or hundreds of phosphate residues linked by high-energy bonds. It is found in all organisms and has been proposed to serve as an energy source in a pre-ATP world. This ubiquitous and abundant biopolymer plays numerous and vital roles in metabolism and regulation in prokaryotes and eukaryotes, but(More)
HD-domain phosphohydrolases have nucleotidase and phosphodiesterase activities and play important roles in the metabolism of nucleotides and in signaling. We present three 2.1-A-resolution crystal structures (one in the free state and two complexed with natural substrates) of an HD-domain phosphohydrolase, the Escherichia coli 5'-nucleotidase YfbR. The(More)
Cyclic diguanylate (or bis-(3'-5') cyclic dimeric guanosine monophosphate; c-di-GMP) is a ubiquitous second messenger that regulates diverse cellular functions, including motility, biofilm formation, cell cycle progression, and virulence in bacteria. In the cell, degradation of c-di-GMP is catalyzed by highly specific EAL domain phosphodiesterases whose(More)
Clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeats (CRISPRs) together with the associated CAS proteins protect microbial cells from invasion by foreign genetic elements using presently unknown molecular mechanisms. All CRISPR systems contain proteins of the CAS2 family, suggesting that these uncharacterized proteins play a central role in this(More)
In all sequenced genomes, a large fraction of predicted genes encodes proteins of unknown biochemical function and up to 15% of the genes with "known" function are mis-annotated. Several global approaches are routinely employed to predict function, including sophisticated sequence analysis, gene expression, protein interaction, and protein structure. In the(More)
The protein TA0175 has a large number of sequence homologues, most of which are annotated as unknown and a few as belonging to the haloacid dehalogenase superfamily, but has no known biological function. Using a combination of amino acid sequence analysis, three-dimensional crystal structure information, and kinetic analysis, we have characterized TA0175 as(More)
The Escherichia coli genes frmB (yaiM) and yeiG encode two uncharacterized proteins that share 54% sequence identity and contain a serine esterase motif. We demonstrated that purified FrmB and YeiG have high carboxylesterase activity against the model substrates, p-nitrophenyl esters of fatty acids (C2-C6) and alpha-naphthyl acetate. However, both proteins(More)
We have identified a novel family of proteins, in which the N-terminal cystathionine beta-synthase (CBS) domain is fused to the C-terminal Zn ribbon domain. Four proteins were overexpressed in Escherichia coli and purified: TA0289 from Thermoplasma acidophilum, TV1335 from Thermoplasma volcanium, PF1953 from Pyrococcus furiosus, and PH0267 from Pyrococcus(More)
Glutaminases belong to the large superfamily of serine-dependent beta-lactamases and penicillin-binding proteins, and they catalyze the hydrolytic deamidation of L-glutamine to L-glutamate. In this work, we purified and biochemically characterized four predicted glutaminases from Escherichia coli (YbaS and YneH) and Bacillus subtilis (YlaM and YbgJ). The(More)