Structure of the bacterial type II NADH dehydrogenase: a monotopic membrane protein with an essential role in energy generation

  • Structure of bacterial NDH-2
  • Adam Heikal, Yoshio Nakatani, Elyse Dunn, Marion R. Weimar, Catherine L. Day, Edward N. Baker, J. Shaun Lott, Leonid A. Sazanov, Gregory M. Cook
  • Molecular Microbiology, January 2014, Wiley
  • DOI: 10.1111/mmi.12507

The 3D structure of a bacterial enzyme important for energy generation for many organisms.

What is it about?

The first structure of a bacterial protein that is important in respiration and energy generation. NDH-2 is a very important enzyme for many bacteria, including the causative agent of tuberculosis Mycobacterium tuberculosis, and other organisms, such as the malarial parasite. In order to better understand this enzyme and it's function a detailed 3D image, as presented here, is extremely important.

Why is it important?

Prior to this paper, yeast structures where available but there was no bacterial structure available, only yeast structures. Whilst there are many similarities between the yeast and bacterial structure, there are also some differences, mainly in the way that the enzyme attaches to the membrane. Disagreements in way the yeast enzyme bound it's substrates and the mechanisms of action meant that an additional similar structure was important to help resolve the situation. Our structure advanced this area of research, gave some insight into the likely mechanisms of action and provided a framework for future work on how this enzyme performs its function and how we might one day design drugs that act against it.

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The following have contributed to this page: Adam Heikal