Biochemical and biophysical research communications

Function of the head-tail junction in the activity of myosin II.

PMID 24041685


All class II myosins have the conserved amino acid sequence Pro-Leu-Leu at their head-tail junctions. We systematically altered this sequence in smooth muscle heavy meromyosin (HMM) by site-directed mutagenesis and examined the effects of these mutations on actin-myosin interactions. Deletion of the proline and second leucine did not cause any noticeable change in either actin-activated ATPase activity or actin-sliding velocity. In contrast, deletion of the two leucine residues and substitution of the first leucine with alanine resulted in a 14-fold and 5-fold decrease, respectively, in actin-activated ATPase activity. However, both these mutations did not appreciably affect actin-sliding velocity, which was consistent with a result that there was no considerable change in the ADP release rate from acto-HMM in the deletion mutant. In contrast to double-headed HMM, a single-headed subfragment-1 (S1) with a Leu-Leu deletion mutation exhibited actin activated ATPase activity similar to that by wild type S1. Our results suggest that the first leucine of the conserved Leu-Leu sequence at the head-tail junction profoundly affects the cooperativity between the two heads involved in the actin activated ATPase activity of myosin II.