Structural insights into the dimer-tetramer transition of FabI from Bacillus anthracis

Hyun Tae Kim, Sulhee Kim, Byeong Kwan Na, Jiwoung Chung, Eunha Hwang, Kwang Yeon Hwang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)


Enoyl-ACP reductase (ENR, also known as FabI) has received considerable interest as an anti-bacterial target due to its essentiality in fatty acid synthesis. All the FabI structures reported to date, regardless of the organism, are composed of homo-tetramers, except for two structures: Bacillus cereus and Staphylococcus aureus FabI (bcFabI and saFabI, respectively), which have been reported as dimers. However, the reason for the existence of the dimeric form in these organisms and the biological meaning of dimeric and tetrameric forms of FabI are ambiguous. Herein, we report the high-resolution crystal structure of a dimeric form of Bacillus anthracis FabI (baFabI) and the crystal structures of tetrameric forms of baFabI in the apo state and in complex with NAD+ and with NAD+-triclosan, at 1.7 Å, 1.85 Å, 1.96 Å, and 1.95 Å, respectively. Interestingly, we found that baFabI with a His6-tag at its C-terminus exists as a dimer, whereas untagged-baFabI exists as a tetramer. The His6-tag may block the dimer-tetramer transition, since baFabI has relatively short-length amino acids (255LG256) after the 310-helix η7 compared to those of FabI of other organisms. The dimeric form of baFabI is catalytically inactive, because the α-helix α5 occupies the NADH-binding site. During the process of dimer-tetramer transition, this α5 helix rotates about 55° toward the tetramer interface and the active site is established. Therefore, tetramerization of baFabI is required for cofactor binding and catalytic activity.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)28-33
Number of pages6
JournalBiochemical and biophysical research communications
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2017 Nov 4


  • Bacillus anthracis FabI
  • Dimer-tetramer transition
  • Dimeric form
  • Tetrameric form

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biophysics
  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology


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