Undruggability of RAS proteins has necessitated alternative strategies for the development of effective inhibitors. In this respect, phosphorylation has recently come into prominence as this reversible post-translational modification attenuates sensitivity of RAS towards RAF. As such, in this study, we set out to unveil the impact of phosphorylation on dynamics of HRASWT and aim to invoke similar behavior in HRASG12D mutant by means of small therapeutic molecules. To this end, we performed molecular dynamics (MD) simulations using phosphorylated HRAS and showed that phosphorylation of Y32 distorted Switch I, hence the RAS/RAF interface. Consequently, we targeted Switch I in HRASG12D by means of approved therapeutic molecules and showed that the ligands enabled detachment of Switch I from the nucleotide-binding pocket. Moreover, we demonstrated that displacement of Switch I from the nucleotide-binding pocket was energetically more favorable in the presence of the ligand. Importantly, we verified computational findings in vitro where HRASG12D/RAF interaction was prevented by the ligand in HEK293T cells that expressed HRASG12D mutant protein. Therefore, these findings suggest that targeting Switch I, hence making Y32 accessible might open up new avenues in future drug discovery strategies that target mutant RAS proteins.
Simulated data used to generate the figures in the commentary are available online (https://osf.io/z2y5s/?view_only=070ebb995ba945bb9aac40d5979bd508).
- Metehan Ilter
- Ozan Topcu
- Ozge Sensoy
- Farzaneh Jalalypour
- Canan Atilgan
The funders had no role in study design, data collection and interpretation, or the decision to submit the work for publication.
- Qiang Cui, Boston University, United States
© 2022, Ilter et al.
This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License permitting unrestricted use and redistribution provided that the original author and source are credited.
Sirtuin 6 (SIRT6) is an NAD+-dependent histone H3 deacetylase that is prominently found associated with chromatin, attenuates transcriptionally active promoters and regulates DNA repair, metabolic homeostasis and lifespan. Unlike other sirtuins, it has low affinity to free histone tails but demonstrates strong binding to nucleosomes. It is poorly understood how SIRT6 docking on nucleosomes stimulates its histone deacetylation activity. Here, we present the structure of human SIRT6 bound to a nucleosome determined by cryogenic electron microscopy. The zinc finger domain of SIRT6 associates tightly with the acidic patch of the nucleosome through multiple arginine anchors. The Rossmann fold domain binds to the terminus of the looser DNA half of the nucleosome, detaching two turns of the DNA from the histone octamer and placing the NAD+ binding pocket close to the DNA exit site. This domain shows flexibility with respect to the fixed zinc finger and moves with, but also relative to, the unwrapped DNA terminus. We apply molecular dynamics simulations of the histone tails in the nucleosome to show that in this mode of interaction, the active site of SIRT6 is perfectly poised to catalyze deacetylation of the H3 histone tail and that the partial unwrapping of the DNA allows even lysines close to the H3 core to reach the enzyme.
The surface layer of Sulfolobus acidocaldarius consists of a flexible but stable outer protein layer that interacts with an inner, membrane-bound protein.