Kinetic properties of polymorphic variants and pathogenic mutants in human cystathionine gamma-lyase

Biochemistry. 2008 Jun 10;47(23):6226-32. doi: 10.1021/bi800351a. Epub 2008 May 14.


Human cystathionine-gamma-lyase (CGL) is a pyridoxal-5'-phosphate (PLP)-dependent enzyme, which functions in the transsulfuration pathway that converts homocysteine to cysteine. In addition, CGL is one of two major enzymes that can catalyze the formation of hydrogen sulfide, an important gaseous signaling molecule. Recently, several mutations in CGL have been described in patients with cystathioninuria, a rare but poorly understood genetic disease. Moreover, a common single nucleotide polymorphism in CGL, c.1364G>T that converts serine at position 403 to isoleucine, has been linked to elevated plasma homocysteine levels. In this study, we have characterized the pathogenic T67I and Q240E missense mutations and the polymorphic variants at amino acid residues 403 using kinetic and spectrophotometric methods. We report that the polymorphism does not influence the cofactor content of the enzyme or its steady-state kinetic properties. In contrast, the T67I mutant exhibits a 3.5-fold decrease in V max compared to that of wild-type CGL, while the Q240E mutant exhibits a 70-fold decrease in V max. The K Ms for cystathionine for both pathogenic mutants are comparable to that of wild type CGL. The PLP content of the T67I and Q240E mutants were about 4-fold and 80-fold lower than that of wild-type enzyme, respectively. Preincubation of the T67I mutant with PLP restored activity to wild-type levels while the same treatment resulted in only partial restoration of activity of the Q240E mutant. These results reveal that both mutations weaken the affinity for PLP and suggest that cystathionuric patients with these mutations should be responsive to pyridoxine therapy.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Crystallography, X-Ray
  • Cystathionine gamma-Lyase / chemistry
  • Cystathionine gamma-Lyase / genetics*
  • Cystathionine gamma-Lyase / metabolism
  • Genetic Variation*
  • Humans
  • Isoleucine
  • Kinetics
  • Models, Molecular
  • Molecular Conformation
  • Mutation
  • Polymorphism, Single Nucleotide*
  • Pyridoxal Phosphate / metabolism
  • Recombinant Proteins / chemistry
  • Recombinant Proteins / isolation & purification
  • Recombinant Proteins / metabolism
  • Serine
  • Spectrophotometry
  • Templates, Genetic


  • Recombinant Proteins
  • Isoleucine
  • Serine
  • Pyridoxal Phosphate
  • Cystathionine gamma-Lyase