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The disulfiram metabolites S-methyl-N,N-diethyldithiocarbamoyl sulfoxide and S-methyl-N,N-diethylthiocarbamoyl sulfone irreversibly inactivate betaine aldehyde dehydrogenase from Pseudomonas aeruginosa, both in vitro and in situ, and arrest bacterial growth

Zaldívar-Machorro, Víctor J., López-Ortiz, Manuel, Demare, Patricia, Regla, Ignacio, Muñoz-Clares, Rosario A.
Biochimie 2011 v.93 no.2 pp. 286-295
enzyme inactivation, choline, betaine-aldehyde dehydrogenase, microbial growth, enzyme kinetics, betaine, metabolites, disulfiram, drugs, oxidation, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, tissues, pathogens, metabolism, humans, dithiothreitol, toxicity, thiols, NADP (coenzyme), osmotolerance, bacteria
Betaine aldehyde dehydrogenase from the human opportunistic pathogen Pseudomonas aeruginosa (PaBADH) catalyzes the irreversible, NAD(P)⁺-dependent oxidation of betaine aldehyde, producing glycine betaine, an osmoprotectant. PaBADH participates in the catabolism of choline and likely in the defense against the osmotic and oxidative stresses to which the bacterium is exposed when infecting human tissues. Given that choline or choline precursors are abundant in infected tissues, PaBADH is a potential drug target because its inhibition will lead to the build up of the toxic betaine aldehyde inside bacterial cells. We tested the thiol reagents, disulfiram (DSF) and five DSF metabolites—diethyldithiocarbamic acid (DDC), S-methyl-N,N-diethyldithiocarbamoyl sulfoxide (MeDDTC-SO) and sulfone (MeDDTC-SO₂), and S-methyl-N,N-diethylthiocarbamoyl sulfoxide (MeDTC-SO) and sulfone (MeDTC-SO₂)—as inhibitors of PaBADH and P. aeruginosa growth. As in vitro PaBADH inhibitors, their order of potency was: MeDDTC-SO₂>DSF>MeDTC-SO₂>MeDDTC-SO>MeDTC-SO. DDC did not inactivate the enzyme. PaBADH inactivation by DSF metabolites (i) was not affected by NAD(P)⁺, (ii) could not be reverted by dithiothreitol, and (iii) did not affect the quaternary structure of the enzyme. Of the DSF metabolites tested, MeDTC-SO₂ and MeDDTC-SO produced significant in situ PaBADH inactivation and arrest of P. aeruginosa growth in choline containing media, in which the expression of PaBADH is induced. They had no effect in media lacking choline, indicating that PaBADH is their main intracellular target, and that arrest of growth is due to accumulation of betaine aldehyde. The in vitro and in situ kinetics of enzyme inactivation by these two compounds were very similar, indicating no restriction on their uptake by the cells. MeDDTC-SO₂ and DSF have no inhibitory effects in situ, probably because their high reactivity towards intracellular nonessential thiols causes their depletion. Our results support that PaBADH is a promising target to treat P. aeruginosa infections, and that some DSF metabolites might be of help in this aim.