Partial High-resolution structure of phosphorylated and non-phosphorylated leucine-rich amelogenin protein adsorbed to hydroxyapatite

David L. Masica, Jeffrey J. Gray, Wendy J. Shaw

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The formation of biogenic materials requires the interaction of organic molecules with the mineral phase. In forming enamel, the amelogenin proteins contribute to the mineralization of hydroxyapatite (HAp). Leucine-rich amelogenin protein (LRAP) is a naturally occurring splice variant of amelogenin that comprises amelogenins predicted HAp binding domains. We determined the partial structure of phosphorylated and non-phosphorylated LRAP variants bound to HAp using combined solid-state NMR (ssNMR) and ssNMR-biased computational structure prediction. New ssNMR measurements in the N-terminus indicate a largely extended structure for both variants, though some measurements are consistent with a partially helical N-terminal segment. The N-terminus of the phosphorylated variant is found to be consistently closer to the HAp surface than the non-phosphorylated variant. Structure prediction was biased using 21 ssNMR measurements in the N-and C-terminus at five HAp crystal faces. The predicted fold of LRAP is similar at all HAp faces studied, regardless of phosphorylation. Largely consistent with experimental observations, LRAPs predicted structure is relatively extended with a helix-turn-helix motif in the N-terminal domain and some helix in the C-terminal domain, and the N-terminal domain of the phosphorylated variant binds HAp more closely than the N-terminal domain of the non-phosphorylated variant. Both predictions and experiments are consistent with structural heterogeneity of the surface adsorbed protein. Predictions for both variants show some potential binding specificity for the {010} HAp crystal face, providing further support that amelogenins block crystal growth on the a and b faces to allow elongated crystals in the c-axis.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)13775-13785
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Physical Chemistry C
Issue number28
StatePublished - Jul 21 2011

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Energy(all)
  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
  • Surfaces, Coatings and Films


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