The unusual kinetics of lactate dehydrogenase of Schistosoma mansoni and their role in the rapid metabolic switch after penetration of the mammalian host

Michiel L. Bexkens, Olivier M.F. Martin, Jos M. van den Heuvel, Marion G.J. Schmitz, Bas Teusink, Barbara M. Bakker, Jaap J. van Hellemond, Jurgen R. Haanstra, Malcolm D. Walkinshaw, Aloysius G.M. Tielens*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

Abstract

Lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) from Schistosoma mansoni has peculiar properties for a eukaryotic LDH. Schistosomal LDH (SmLDH) isolated from schistosomes, and the recombinantly expressed protein, are strongly inhibited by ATP, which is neutralized by fructose-1,6-bisphosphate (FBP). In the conserved FBP/anion binding site we identified two residues in SmLDH (Val187 and Tyr190) that differ from the conserved residues in LDHs of other eukaryotes, but are identical to conserved residues in FBP-sensitive prokaryotic LDHs. Three-dimensional (3D) models were generated to compare the structure of SmLDH with other LDHs. These models indicated that residues Val187, and especially Tyr190, play a crucial role in the interaction of FBP with the anion pocket of SmLDH. These 3D models of SmLDH are also consistent with a competitive model of SmLDH inhibition in which ATP (inhibitor) and FBP (activator) compete for binding in a well-defined anion pocket. The model of bound ATP predicts a distortion of the nearby key catalytic residue His195, resulting in enzyme inhibition. To investigate a possible physiological role of this allosteric regulation of LDH in schistosomes we made a kinetic model in which the allosteric regulation of the glycolytic enzymes can be varied. The model showed that inhibition of LDH by ATP prevents fermentation to lactate in the free-living stages in water and ensures complete oxidation via the Krebs cycle of the endogenous glycogen reserves. This mechanism of allosteric inhibition by ATP prevents the untimely depletion of these glycogen reserves, the only fuel of the free-living cercariae. Neutralization by FBP of this ATP inhibition of LDH prevents accumulation of glycolytic intermediates when S. mansoni schistosomula are confronted with the sudden large increase in glucose availability upon penetration of the final host. It appears that the LDH of S. mansoni is special and well suited to deal with the variations in glucose availability the parasite encounters during its life cycle.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)367-378
Number of pages12
JournalInternational Journal for Parasitology
Volume54
Issue number7
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2024

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