Published on June 4, 1999 in J Mol Biol volume 289.
PubMed ID: 10366505
The rRNA methyltransferase ErmC' transfers methyl groups from S -adenosyl-l-methionine to atom N6 of an adenine base within the peptidyltransferase loop of 23 S rRNA, thus conferring antibiotic resistance against a number of macrolide antibiotics. The crystal structures of ErmC' and of its complexes with the cofactor S -adenosyl-l-methionine, the reaction product S-adenosyl-l-homocysteine and the methyltransferase inhibitor Sinefungin, respectively, show that the enzyme undergoes small conformational changes upon ligand binding. Overall, the ligand molecules bind to the protein in a similar mode as observed for other methyltransferases. Small differences between the binding of the amino acid parts of the different ligands are correlated with differences in their chemical structure. A model for the transition-state based on the atomic details of the active site is consistent with a one-step methyl-transfer mechanism and might serve as a first step towards the design of potent Erm inhibitors.