Structural and mechanistic insights into the Artemis endonuclease and strategies for its inhibition
Yosaatmadja Y., Baddock HT., Newman JA., Bielinski M., Gavard AE., Mukhopadhyay SMM., Dannerfjord AA., Schofield CJ., McHugh PJ., Gileadi O.
ABSTRACTArtemis (DCLRE1C) is an endonuclease that plays a key role in development of B- and T-lymphocytes and in DNA double-strand break repair by non-homologous end-joining (NHEJ). Artemis is phosphorylated by DNA-PKcs and acts to open DNA hairpin intermediates generated during V(D)J and class-switch recombination. Consistently, Artemis deficiency leads to radiosensitive congenital severe immune deficiency (RS-SCID). Artemis belongs to a structural superfamily of nucleases that contain conserved metallo-β-lactamase (MBL) and β-CASP (CPSF-Artemis-SNM1-Pso2) domains. Here, we present crystal structures of the catalytic domain of wild type and variant forms of Artemis that cause RS-SCID Omenn syndrome. The truncated catalytic domain of the Artemis is a constitutively active enzyme that with similar activity to a phosphorylated full-length protein. Our structures help explain the basis of the predominantly endonucleolytic activity of Artemis, which contrast with the predominantly exonuclease activity of the closely related SNM1A and SNM1B nucleases. The structures also reveal a second metal binding site in its β-CASP domain that is unique to Artemis. By combining our structural data that from a recently reported structure we were able model the interaction of Artemis with DNA substrates. Moreover, co-crystal structures with inhibitors indicate the potential for structure-guided development of inhibitors.