Refined X-ray crystal structures of the reactive site modified ovomucoid inhibitor third domains from silver pheasant (OMSVP3*) and from Japanese quail (OMJPQ3*)

Djordje Musil*, Wolfram Bode, Robert Huber, Michael Laskowski, Tiao-Yin Lin, Wojciech Ardelt

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

32 Scopus citations


Tetragonal and triclinic crystals of two ovomucoid inhibitor third domains from silver pheasant and Japanese quail, modified at their reactive site bonds Met18Glu19 (OMSVP3*) and Lys18Asp19 (OMJPQ3*), respectively, were obtained. Their molecular and crystal structures were solved using X-ray data to 2.5 Å and 1.55 Å by means of Patterson search methods using truncated models of the intact (virgin) inhibitors as search models. Both structures were crystallographically refined to R-values of 0.185 and 0.192, respectively, applying an energy restraint reciprocal space refinement procedure. Both modified inhibitors show large deviations from the intact derivatives only in the proteinase binding loops (Pro14 to Arg21) and in the amino-terminal segments (Leul to Val6). In the modified inhibitors the residues immediately adjacent to the cleavage site (in particular P2, P1, P1′) are mobile and able to adapt to varying crystal environments. The charged end-groups i.e. Met18 COO- and Glu19 NH3+ in OMSVP3*, and Lys18 COO- and Aspl9 NH3+ in OMJPQ3*, do not form ion pairs with one another. The hydrogen bond connecting the side-chains of Thr17 and Glu19 (i.e. residues on either side of the scissile peptide bond) in OMSVP3 is broken in the modified form, and the hydrogen-bond interactions observed in the intact molecules between the Asn33 side-chain and the carbonyl groups of loop residues P2 and P1′ are absent or weak in the modified inhibitors. The reactive site cleavage, however, has little effect on specific interactions within the protein scaffold such as the side-chain hydrogen bond between Asp27 and Tyr31 or the side-chain stacking of Tyr20 and Pro22. The conformational differences in the amino-terminal segment Leul to Val6 are explained by their ability to move freely, either to associate with segments of symmetry-related molecules under formation of a four-stranded β-barrel (OMSVP3* and OMJPQ3) or to bind to surrounding molecules. Together with the results given in the accompanying paper, these findings probably explain why Khyd of small protein inhibitors of serine proteinases is generally found to be so small.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)739-755
Number of pages17
JournalJournal of Molecular Biology
Issue number3
StatePublished - 5 Aug 1991


  • X-ray crystallography
  • inhibitor
  • limited proteolysis
  • ovomucoid
  • serine proteinase inhibitor

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