Mycobacterium tuberculosis 5′-deoxyadenosine/5′-methylthioadenosine nucleosidase (Rv0091) catalyzes the N-riboside hydrolysis of its substrates 5′-methylthioadenosine (MTA) and 5′-deoxyadenosine (5′-dAdo). 5′-dAdo is the preferred substrate, a product of radical S-adenosylmethionine-dependent enzyme reactions. Rv0091 is characterized by a ribocation-like transition state, with low N-ribosidic bond order, an N7-protonated adenine leaving group, and an activated but weakly bonded water nucleophile. DADMe-Immucillins incorporating 5′-substituents of the substrates 5′-dAdo and MTA were synthesized and characterized as inhibitors of Rv0091. 5′-Deoxy-DADMe-Immucillin-A was the most potent among the 5′-dAdo transition state analogues with a dissociation constant of 640 pM. Among the 5′-thio substituents, hexylthio-DADMe-Immucillin-A was the best inhibitor at 87 pM. The specificity of Rv0091 for the Immucillin transition state analogues differs from those of other bacterial homologues because of an altered hydrophobic tunnel accepting the 5′-substituents. Inhibitors of Rv0091 had weak cell growth effects on M. tuberculosis or Mycobacterium smegmatis but were lethal toward Helicobacter pylori, where the 5′-methylthioadenosine nucleosidase is essential in menaquinone biosynthesis. We propose that Rv0091 plays a role in 5′-deoxyadenosine recycling but is not essential for growth in these Mycobacteria.
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