Distinct Ca2+ binding properties of novel C2 domains of plant phospholipase dalpha and beta

J Biol Chem. 2000 Jun 30;275(26):19700-6. doi: 10.1074/jbc.M001945200.


Of the isoforms of plant phospholipase D (PLD) that have been cloned and characterized, PLDalpha requires millimolar levels of Ca(2+) for optimal activity, whereas PLDbeta is most active at micromolar concentrations of Ca(2+). Multiple amino acid sequence alignments suggest that PLDalpha and PLDbeta both contain a Ca(2+)-dependent phospholipid-binding C2 domain near their N termini. In the present study, we expressed and characterized the putative C2 domains of PLDalpha and PLDbeta, designated PLDalpha C2 and PLDbeta C2, by CD spectroscopy, isothermal titration calorimetry, and phospholipid binding assay. Both PLD C2 domains displayed CD spectra consistent with anticipated major beta-sheet structures but underwent spectral changes upon binding Ca(2+); the magnitude was larger for PLDbeta C2. These conformational changes, not shown by any of the previously characterized C2 domains of animal origin, occurred at micromolar Ca(2+) concentrations for PLDbeta C2 but at millimolar levels of the cation for PLDalpha C2. PLDbeta C2 exhibited three Ca(2+)-binding sites: one with a dissociation constant (K(d)) of 0.8 microm and the other two with a K(d) of 24 micrometer. In contrast, isothermal titration calorimetry data of PLDalpha C2 were consistent with 1-3 low affinity Ca(2+)-binding sites with K(d) in the range of 590-470 micrometer. The thermodynamics of Ca(2+) binding markedly differed for the two C2 domains. Likewise, PLDbeta C2 bound phosphatidylcholine (PC), the substrate of PLD, in the presence of submillimolar Ca(2+) concentrations, whereas PLDalpha C2 did so only in the presence of millimolar levels of the metal ion. Both C2 domains bound phosphatidylinoistol 4,5-bisphosphate, a regulator of PC hydrolysis by PLD. However, added Ca(2+) displaced the bound phosphatidylinoistol 4,5-bisphosphate. Ca(2+) and PC binding properties of PLDalpha C2 and PLDbeta C2 follow a trend similar to the Ca(2+) requirements of the whole enzymes, PLDalpha and PLDbeta, for PC hydrolysis. Taken together, the results suggest that the C2 domains of PLDalpha and PLDbeta have novel structural features and serve as handles by which Ca(2+) differentially regulates the activities of the isoforms.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Amino Acid Sequence
  • Arabidopsis / enzymology*
  • Calcium / metabolism*
  • Calorimetry
  • Catalysis
  • Circular Dichroism
  • Dose-Response Relationship, Drug
  • Glutathione Transferase / metabolism
  • Kinetics
  • Magnesium / metabolism
  • Models, Molecular
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Phospholipase D / chemistry*
  • Phospholipase D / metabolism*
  • Phospholipases A / chemistry
  • Phospholipids / metabolism
  • Protein Binding
  • Protein Conformation
  • Protein Folding
  • Protein Isoforms
  • Protein Structure, Tertiary
  • Recombinant Fusion Proteins / chemistry
  • Recombinant Fusion Proteins / metabolism
  • Sequence Homology, Amino Acid
  • Thermodynamics
  • Type C Phospholipases / chemistry


  • Phospholipids
  • Protein Isoforms
  • Recombinant Fusion Proteins
  • Glutathione Transferase
  • Phospholipases A
  • Type C Phospholipases
  • Phospholipase D
  • Magnesium
  • Calcium