Biochimica et biophysica acta

Structure-activity relationship of diacylglycerol kinase theta.

PMID 15164764


Diacylglycerol kinase (DGK) phosphorylates the second messenger diacylglycerol (DAG) to phosphatidic acid (PA). Among the nine mammalian isotypes identified, DGKtheta is the only one with three cysteine-rich domains (CRDs) (instead of two) in its N-terminal regulatory region. We previously reported that DGKtheta binds to and is negatively regulated by active RhoA. We now report that RhoA strongly binds to the C-terminal catalytic domain, which would explain its inhibition of DGK activity. To help finding a physiological function of DGKtheta, we further determined its activity in vitro as a function of 15 different truncations and point mutations in the primary structure. Most of these alterations, located throughout the protein, inactivated the enzyme, suggesting that catalytic activity depends on all of its conserved domains. The most C-terminal CRD is elongated with a stretch of 15 amino acids that is highly conserved among DGK isotypes. Mutation analysis revealed a number of residues in this region that were essential for enzyme activity. We suggest that this CRD extension plays an essential role in the correct folding of the protein and/or in substrate presentation to the catalytic region of the protein.