Protein tyrosine phosphatase B (PtpB) from Mycobacterium tuberculosis (Mtb) extends the bacteria's survival in hosts and hence is a potential target for Mtb-specific drugs. To study how Mtb-specific sequence insertions in PtpB may regulate access to its active site through large-amplitude conformational changes, we performed free-energy calculations using an all-atom explicit solvent model. Corroborated by biochemical assays, the results show that PtpB's active site is controlled via an "either/or" compound conformational gating mechanism, an unexpected discovery that Mtb has evolved to bestow a single enzyme with such intricate logical operations. In addition to providing unprecedented insights for its active-site surroundings, the findings also suggest new ways of inactivating PtpB.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Colloid and Surface Chemistry