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Sample records for membrane proteins

  1. Drugging Membrane Protein Interactions.

    PubMed

    Yin, Hang; Flynn, Aaron D

    2016-07-11

    The majority of therapeutics target membrane proteins, accessible on the surface of cells, to alter cellular signaling. Cells use membrane proteins to transduce signals into cells, transport ions and molecules, bind cells to a surface or substrate, and catalyze reactions. Newly devised technologies allow us to drug conventionally "undruggable" regions of membrane proteins, enabling modulation of protein-protein, protein-lipid, and protein-nucleic acid interactions. In this review, we survey the state of the art of high-throughput screening and rational design in drug discovery, and we evaluate the advances in biological understanding and technological capacity that will drive pharmacotherapy forward against unorthodox membrane protein targets. PMID:26863923

  2. Biomolecular membrane protein crystallization

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Reddy Bolla, Jani; Su, Chih-Chia; Yu, Edward W.

    2012-07-01

    Integral membrane proteins comprise approximately 30% of the sequenced genomes, and there is an immediate need for their high-resolution structural information. Currently, the most reliable approach to obtain these structures is X-ray crystallography. However, obtaining crystals of membrane proteins that diffract to high resolution appears to be quite challenging, and remains a major obstacle in structural determination. This brief review summarizes a variety of methodologies for use in crystallizing these membrane proteins. Hopefully, by introducing the available methods, techniques, and providing a general understanding of membrane proteins, a rational decision can be made about now to crystallize these complex materials.

  3. Lipid membranes for membrane proteins.

    PubMed

    Kukol, Andreas

    2015-01-01

    The molecular dynamics (MD) simulation of membrane proteins requires the setup of an accurate representation of lipid bilayers. This chapter describes the setup of a lipid bilayer system from scratch using generally available tools, starting with a definition of the lipid molecule POPE, generation of a lipid bilayer, energy minimization, MD simulation, and data analysis. The data analysis includes the calculation of area and volume per lipid, deuterium order parameters, self-diffusion constant, and the electron density profile. PMID:25330959

  4. Drugging Membrane Protein Interactions

    PubMed Central

    Yin, Hang; Flynn, Aaron D.

    2016-01-01

    The majority of therapeutics target membrane proteins, accessible on the surface of cells, to alter cellular signaling. Cells use membrane proteins to transduce signals into cells, transport ions and molecules, bind the cell to a surface or substrate, and catalyze reactions. Newly devised technologies allow us to drug conventionally “undruggable” regions of membrane proteins, enabling modulation of protein–protein, protein–lipid, and protein–nucleic acid interactions. In this review, we survey the state of the art in high-throughput screening and rational design in drug discovery, and we evaluate the advances in biological understanding and technological capacity that will drive pharmacotherapy forward against unorthodox membrane protein targets. PMID:26863923

  5. Structures of membrane proteins

    PubMed Central

    Vinothkumar, Kutti R.; Henderson, Richard

    2010-01-01

    In reviewing the structures of membrane proteins determined up to the end of 2009, we present in words and pictures the most informative examples from each family. We group the structures together according to their function and architecture to provide an overview of the major principles and variations on the most common themes. The first structures, determined 20 years ago, were those of naturally abundant proteins with limited conformational variability, and each membrane protein structure determined was a major landmark. With the advent of complete genome sequences and efficient expression systems, there has been an explosion in the rate of membrane protein structure determination, with many classes represented. New structures are published every month and more than 150 unique membrane protein structures have been determined. This review analyses the reasons for this success, discusses the challenges that still lie ahead, and presents a concise summary of the key achievements with illustrated examples selected from each class. PMID:20667175

  6. Outer membrane protein purification.

    PubMed

    Arigita, C; Jiskoot, W; Graaf, M R; Kersten, G F

    2001-01-01

    The major outer membrane proteins (OMPs) from Neisseria meningitidis, which are expressed at high levels, are subdivided in five classes based on molecular weight (1,2) (see Table 1). Table 1 Major Meningococcal Outer-Membrane Proteins Outer-membrane proteins Name Molecular maass Function/characteristics Class 1 PorA 44-47 kDa Porin Class 2/3 PorB 37-42 kDa Porin Class 4 Rmp Reductionmodifiableprotein, unknown Class 5 Opa 26-30 kDa Adhesion,opacity protein Opc 25 kDa Invasion, opacity protein Iron-regulated proteins Mirp 37 kDa Iron acquisition (?);majoriron-regulatedprotein FrpB 70 kDa Ferric enterobactin receptor (also FetA) Adapted from ref. (1). PMID:21336748

  7. Protein mediated membrane adhesion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Carlson, Andreas; Mahadevan, L.

    2015-05-01

    Adhesion in the context of mechanical attachment, signaling, and movement in cellular dynamics is mediated by the kinetic interactions between membrane-embedded proteins in an aqueous environment. Here, we present a minimal theoretical framework for the dynamics of membrane adhesion that accounts for the kinetics of protein binding, the elastic deformation of the membrane, and the hydrodynamics of squeeze flow in the membrane gap. We analyze the resulting equations using scaling estimates to characterize the spatiotemporal features of the adhesive patterning and corroborate them using numerical simulations. In addition to characterizing aspects of cellular dynamics, our results might also be applicable to a range of phenomena in physical chemistry and materials science where flow, deformation, and kinetics are coupled to each other in slender geometries.

  8. Membrane Protein Prediction Methods

    PubMed Central

    Punta, Marco; Forrest, Lucy R.; Bigelow, Henry; Kernytsky, Andrew; Liu, Jinfeng; Rost, Burkhard

    2007-01-01

    We survey computational approaches that tackle membrane protein structure and function prediction. While describing the main ideas that have led to the development of the most relevant and novel methods, we also discuss pitfalls, provide practical hints and highlight the challenges that remain. The methods covered include: sequence alignment, motif search, functional residue identification, transmembrane segment and protein topology predictions, homology and ab initio modeling. Overall, predictions of functional and structural features of membrane proteins are improving, although progress is hampered by the limited amount of high-resolution experimental information available. While predictions of transmembrane segments and protein topology rank among the most accurate methods in computational biology, more attention and effort will be required in the future to ameliorate database search, homology and ab initio modeling. PMID:17367718

  9. Membrane Bending by Protein Crowding

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stachowiak, Jeanne

    2014-03-01

    From endosomes and synaptic vesicles to the cristae of the mitochondria and the annulus of the nuclear pore, highly curved membranes are fundamental to the structure and physiology of living cells. The established view is that specific families of proteins are able to bend membranes by binding to them. For example, inherently curved proteins are thought to impose their structure on the membrane surface, while membrane-binding proteins with hydrophobic motifs are thought to insert into the membrane like wedges, driving curvature. However, computational models have recently revealed that these mechanisms would require specialized membrane-bending proteins to occupy nearly 100% of a curved membrane surface, an improbable physiological situation given the immense density and diversity of membrane-bound proteins, and the low expression levels of these specialized proteins within curved regions of the membrane. How then does curvature arise within the complex and crowded environment of cellular membranes? Our recent work using proteins involved in clathrin-mediated endocytosis, as well as engineered protein-lipid interactions, has suggested a new hypothesis - that lateral pressure generated by collisions between membrane-bound proteins can drive membrane bending. Specifically, by correlating membrane bending with quantitative optical measurements of protein density on synthetic membrane surfaces and simple physical models of collisions among membrane-bound proteins, we have demonstrated that protein-protein steric interactions can drive membrane curvature. These findings suggest that a simple imbalance in the concentration of membrane-bound proteins across a membrane surface can drive a membrane to bend, providing an efficient mechanism by which essentially any protein can contribute to shaping membranes.

  10. Tracking Membrane Protein Association in Model Membranes

    PubMed Central

    Reffay, Myriam; Gambin, Yann; Benabdelhak, Houssain; Phan, Gilles; Taulier, Nicolas; Ducruix, Arnaud; Hodges, Robert S.; Urbach, Wladimir

    2009-01-01

    Membrane proteins are essential in the exchange processes of cells. In spite of great breakthrough in soluble proteins studies, membrane proteins structures, functions and interactions are still a challenge because of the difficulties related to their hydrophobic properties. Most of the experiments are performed with detergent-solubilized membrane proteins. However widely used micellar systems are far from the biological two-dimensions membrane. The development of new biomimetic membrane systems is fundamental to tackle this issue. We present an original approach that combines the Fluorescence Recovery After fringe Pattern Photobleaching technique and the use of a versatile sponge phase that makes it possible to extract crucial informations about interactions between membrane proteins embedded in the bilayers of a sponge phase. The clear advantage lies in the ability to adjust at will the spacing between two adjacent bilayers. When the membranes are far apart, the only possible interactions occur laterally between proteins embedded within the same bilayer, whereas when membranes get closer to each other, interactions between proteins embedded in facing membranes may occur as well. After validating our approach on the streptavidin-biotinylated peptide complex, we study the interactions between two membrane proteins, MexA and OprM, from a Pseudomonas aeruginosa efflux pump. The mode of interaction, the size of the protein complex and its potential stoichiometry are determined. In particular, we demonstrate that: MexA is effectively embedded in the bilayer; MexA and OprM do not interact laterally but can form a complex if they are embedded in opposite bilayers; the population of bound proteins is at its maximum for bilayers separated by a distance of about 200 Å, which is the periplasmic thickness of Pseudomonas aeruginosa. We also show that the MexA-OprM association is enhanced when the position and orientation of the protein is restricted by the bilayers. We

  11. Proteins causing membrane fouling in membrane bioreactors.

    PubMed

    Miyoshi, Taro; Nagai, Yuhei; Aizawa, Tomoyasu; Kimura, Katsuki; Watanabe, Yoshimasa

    2015-01-01

    In this study, the details of proteins causing membrane fouling in membrane bioreactors (MBRs) treating real municipal wastewater were investigated. Two separate pilot-scale MBRs were continuously operated under significantly different operating conditions; one MBR was a submerged type whereas the other was a side-stream type. The submerged and side-stream MBRs were operated for 20 and 10 days, respectively. At the end of continuous operation, the foulants were extracted from the fouled membranes. The proteins contained in the extracted foulants were enriched by using the combination of crude concentration with an ultrafiltration membrane and trichloroacetic acid precipitation, and then separated by two-dimensional polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis (2D-PAGE). The N-terminal amino acid sequencing analysis of the proteins which formed intensive spots on the 2D-PAGE gels allowed us to partially identify one protein (OmpA family protein originated from genus Brevundimonas or Riemerella anatipestifer) from the foulant obtained from the submerged MBR, and two proteins (OprD and OprF originated from genus Pseudomonas) from that obtained from the side-stream MBR. Despite the significant difference in operating conditions of the two MBRs, all proteins identified in this study belong to β-barrel protein. These findings strongly suggest the importance of β-barrel proteins in developing membrane fouling in MBRs. PMID:26360742

  12. Microtechnologies for membrane protein studies

    PubMed Central

    Suzuki, Hiroaki

    2008-01-01

    Despite the rapid and enormous progress in biotechnologies, the biochemical analysis of membrane proteins is still a difficult task. The presence of the large hydrophobic region buried in the lipid bilayer membrane (transmembrane domain) makes it difficult to analyze membrane proteins in standard assays developed for water-soluble proteins. To handle membrane proteins, the lipid bilayer membrane may be used as a platform to sustain their functionalities. Relatively slow progress in developing micro total analysis systems (μTAS) for membrane protein analysis directly reflects the difficulty of handling lipid membranes, which is a common problem in bulk measurement technologies. Nonetheless, researchers are continuing to develop efficient and sensitive analytical microsystems for the study of membrane proteins. Here, we review the latest developments, which enable detection of events caused by membrane proteins, such as ion channel current, membrane transport, and receptor/ligand interaction, by utilizing microfabricated structures. High-throughput and highly sensitive detection systems for membrane proteins are now becoming a realistic goal. Although most of these systems are still in the early stages of development, we believe this field will become one of the most important applications of μTAS for pharmaceutical and clinical screenings as well as for basic biochemical research. PMID:18335213

  13. Proteins interacting with Membranes: Protein Sorting and Membrane Shaping

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Callan-Jones, Andrew

    2015-03-01

    Membrane-bound transport in cells requires generating membrane curvature. In addition, transport is selective, in order to establish spatial gradients of membrane components in the cell. The mechanisms underlying cell membrane shaping by proteins and the influence of curvature on membrane composition are active areas of study in cell biophysics. In vitro approaches using Giant Unilamellar Vesicles (GUVs) are a useful tool to identify the physical mechanisms that drive sorting of membrane components and membrane shape change by proteins. I will present recent work on the curvature sensing and generation of IRSp53, a protein belonging to the BAR family, whose members, sharing a banana-shaped backbone, are involved in endocytosis. Pulling membrane tubes with 10-100 nm radii from GUVs containing encapsulated IRSp53 have, unexpectedly, revealed a non-monotonic dependence of the protein concentration on the tube as a function of curvature. Experiments also show that bound proteins alter the tube mechanics and that protein phase separation along the tube occurs at low tensions. I will present accompanying theoretical work that can explain these findings based on the competition between the protein's intrinsic curvature and the effective rigidity of a membrane-protein patch.

  14. Membrane Protein Assembly into Nanodiscs

    PubMed Central

    Bayburt, Timothy H.; Sligar, Stephen G.

    2016-01-01

    Nanodiscs are soluble nanoscale phospholipid bilayers which can self-assemble integral membrane proteins for biophysical, enzymatic or structural investigations. This means for rendering membrane proteins soluble at the single molecule level offers advantages over liposomes or detergent micelles in terms of size, stability, ability to add genetically modifiable features to the Nanodisc structure and ready access to both sides of the phospholipid bilayer domain. Thus the Nanodisc system provides a novel platform for understanding membrane protein function. We provide an overview of the Nanodisc approach and document through several examples many of the applications to the study of the structure and function of integral membrane proteins. PMID:19836392

  15. Structure Prediction of Membrane Proteins

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hu, Xiche

    Membrane proteins play a central role in many cellular and physiological processes. It is estimated that integral membrane proteins make up about 20-30% of the proteome (Krogh et al., 2001b; Stevens and Arkin, 2000; von Heijne, 1999). They are essential mediators of material and information transfer across cell membranes. Their functions include active and passive transport of molecules into and out of cells and organelles; transduction of energy among various forms (light, electrical, and chemical energy); as well as reception and transduction of chemical and electrical signals across membranes (Avdonin, 2005; Bockaert et al., 2002; Pahl, 1999; Rehling et al., 2004; Stack et al., 1995). Identifying these transmembrane (TM) proteins and deciphering their molecular mechanisms, then, is of great importance, particularly as applied to biomedicine. Membrane proteins are the targets of a large number of pharmacologically and toxicologically active substances, and are directly involved in their uptake, metabolism, and clearance (Bettler et al., 1998; Cohen, 2002; Heusser and Jardieu, 1997; Tibes et al., 2005; Xu et al., 2005). Despite the importance of membrane proteins, the knowledge of their high-resolution structures and mechanisms of action has lagged far behind in comparison to that of water-soluble proteins: less than 1% of all three-dimensional structures deposited in the Protein Data Bank are of membrane proteins. This unfortunate disparity stems from difficulties in overexpression and the crystallization of membrane proteins (Grisshammer and Tate, 1995; Michel, 1991).

  16. Molecular dynamics of membrane proteins.

    SciTech Connect

    Woolf, Thomas B.; Crozier, Paul Stewart; Stevens, Mark Jackson

    2004-10-01

    Understanding the dynamics of the membrane protein rhodopsin will have broad implications for other membrane proteins and cellular signaling processes. Rhodopsin (Rho) is a light activated G-protein coupled receptor (GPCR). When activated by ligands, GPCRs bind and activate G-proteins residing within the cell and begin a signaling cascade that results in the cell's response to external stimuli. More than 50% of all current drugs are targeted toward G-proteins. Rho is the prototypical member of the class A GPCR superfamily. Understanding the activation of Rho and its interaction with its Gprotein can therefore lead to a wider understanding of the mechanisms of GPCR activation and G-protein activation. Understanding the dark to light transition of Rho is fully analogous to the general ligand binding and activation problem for GPCRs. This transition is dependent on the lipid environment. The effect of lipids on membrane protein activity in general has had little attention, but evidence is beginning to show a significant role for lipids in membrane protein activity. Using the LAMMPS program and simulation methods benchmarked under the IBIG program, we perform a variety of allatom molecular dynamics simulations of membrane proteins.

  17. The interactions of peripheral membrane proteins with biological membranes

    SciTech Connect

    Johs, Alexander; Whited, A. M.

    2015-01-01

    The interactions of peripheral proteins with membrane surfaces are critical to many biological processes, including signaling, recognition, membrane trafficking, cell division and cell structure. On a molecular level, peripheral membrane proteins can modulate lipid composition, membrane dynamics and protein-protein interactions. Biochemical and biophysical studies have shown that these interactions are in fact highly complex, dominated by several different types of interactions, and have an interdependent effect on both the protein and membrane. Here we examine three major mechanisms underlying the interactions between peripheral membrane proteins and membranes: electrostatic interactions, hydrophobic interactions, and fatty acid modification of proteins. While experimental approaches continue to provide critical insights into specific interaction mechanisms, emerging bioinformatics resources and tools contribute to a systems-level picture of protein-lipid interactions. Through these recent advances, we begin to understand the pivotal role of protein-lipid interactions underlying complex biological functions at membrane interfaces.

  18. The interactions of peripheral membrane proteins with biological membranes

    DOE PAGESBeta

    Johs, Alexander; Whited, A. M.

    2015-01-01

    The interactions of peripheral proteins with membrane surfaces are critical to many biological processes, including signaling, recognition, membrane trafficking, cell division and cell structure. On a molecular level, peripheral membrane proteins can modulate lipid composition, membrane dynamics and protein-protein interactions. Biochemical and biophysical studies have shown that these interactions are in fact highly complex, dominated by several different types of interactions, and have an interdependent effect on both the protein and membrane. Here we examine three major mechanisms underlying the interactions between peripheral membrane proteins and membranes: electrostatic interactions, hydrophobic interactions, and fatty acid modification of proteins. While experimental approachesmore » continue to provide critical insights into specific interaction mechanisms, emerging bioinformatics resources and tools contribute to a systems-level picture of protein-lipid interactions. Through these recent advances, we begin to understand the pivotal role of protein-lipid interactions underlying complex biological functions at membrane interfaces.« less

  19. Multiscale Simulation of Protein Mediated Membrane Remodeling

    PubMed Central

    Ayton, Gary S.; Voth, Gregory A.

    2009-01-01

    Proteins interacting with membranes can result in substantial membrane deformations and curvatures. This effect is known in its broadest terms as membrane remodeling. This review article will survey current multiscale simulation methodologies that have been employed to examine protein-mediated membrane remodeling. PMID:19922811

  20. Influences of Membrane Mimetic Environments on Membrane Protein Structures

    PubMed Central

    Zhou, Huan-Xiang; Cross, Timothy A.

    2013-01-01

    The number of membrane protein structures in the Protein Data Bank is becoming significant and growing. Here, the transmembrane domain structures of the helical membrane proteins are evaluated to assess the influences of the membrane mimetic environments. Toward this goal, many of the biophysical properties of membranes are discussed and contrasted with those of the membrane mimetics commonly used for structure determination. Although the mimetic environments can perturb the protein structures to an extent that potentially gives rise to misinterpretation of functional mechanisms, there are also many structures that have a native-like appearance. From this assessment, an initial set of guidelines is proposed for distinguishing native-like from nonnative-like membrane protein structures. With experimental techniques for validation and computational methods for refinement and quality assessment and enhancement, there are good prospects for achieving native-like structures for these very important proteins. PMID:23451886

  1. Computational modeling of membrane proteins

    PubMed Central

    Leman, Julia Koehler; Ulmschneider, Martin B.; Gray, Jeffrey J.

    2014-01-01

    The determination of membrane protein (MP) structures has always trailed that of soluble proteins due to difficulties in their overexpression, reconstitution into membrane mimetics, and subsequent structure determination. The percentage of MP structures in the protein databank (PDB) has been at a constant 1-2% for the last decade. In contrast, over half of all drugs target MPs, only highlighting how little we understand about drug-specific effects in the human body. To reduce this gap, researchers have attempted to predict structural features of MPs even before the first structure was experimentally elucidated. In this review, we present current computational methods to predict MP structure, starting with secondary structure prediction, prediction of trans-membrane spans, and topology. Even though these methods generate reliable predictions, challenges such as predicting kinks or precise beginnings and ends of secondary structure elements are still waiting to be addressed. We describe recent developments in the prediction of 3D structures of both α-helical MPs as well as β-barrels using comparative modeling techniques, de novo methods, and molecular dynamics (MD) simulations. The increase of MP structures has (1) facilitated comparative modeling due to availability of more and better templates, and (2) improved the statistics for knowledge-based scoring functions. Moreover, de novo methods have benefitted from the use of correlated mutations as restraints. Finally, we outline current advances that will likely shape the field in the forthcoming decade. PMID:25355688

  2. Reconstitution of Membrane Proteins into Model Membranes: Seeking Better Ways to Retain Protein Activities

    PubMed Central

    Shen, Hsin-Hui; Lithgow, Trevor; Martin, Lisandra L.

    2013-01-01

    The function of any given biological membrane is determined largely by the specific set of integral membrane proteins embedded in it, and the peripheral membrane proteins attached to the membrane surface. The activity of these proteins, in turn, can be modulated by the phospholipid composition of the membrane. The reconstitution of membrane proteins into a model membrane allows investigation of individual features and activities of a given cell membrane component. However, the activity of membrane proteins is often difficult to sustain following reconstitution, since the composition of the model phospholipid bilayer differs from that of the native cell membrane. This review will discuss the reconstitution of membrane protein activities in four different types of model membrane—monolayers, supported lipid bilayers, liposomes and nanodiscs, comparing their advantages in membrane protein reconstitution. Variation in the surrounding model environments for these four different types of membrane layer can affect the three-dimensional structure of reconstituted proteins and may possibly lead to loss of the proteins activity. We also discuss examples where the same membrane proteins have been successfully reconstituted into two or more model membrane systems with comparison of the observed activity in each system. Understanding of the behavioral changes for proteins in model membrane systems after membrane reconstitution is often a prerequisite to protein research. It is essential to find better solutions for retaining membrane protein activities for measurement and characterization in vitro. PMID:23344058

  3. Cell-free system for synthesizing membrane proteins cell free method for synthesizing membrane proteins

    DOEpatents

    Laible, Philip D; Hanson, Deborah K

    2013-06-04

    The invention provides an in vitro method for producing proteins, membrane proteins, membrane-associated proteins, and soluble proteins that interact with membrane-associated proteins for assembly into an oligomeric complex or that require association with a membrane for proper folding. The method comprises, supplying intracytoplasmic membranes from organisms; modifying protein composition of intracytoplasmic membranes from organism by modifying DNA to delete genes encoding functions of the organism not associated with the formation of the intracytoplasmic membranes; generating appropriate DNA or RNA templates that encode the target protein; and mixing the intracytoplasmic membranes with the template and a transcription/translation-competent cellular extract to cause simultaneous production of the membrane proteins and encapsulation of the membrane proteins within the intracytoplasmic membranes.

  4. Membrane proteins: always an insoluble problem?

    PubMed

    Rawlings, Andrea E

    2016-06-15

    Membrane proteins play crucial roles in cellular processes and are often important pharmacological drug targets. The hydrophobic properties of these proteins make full structural and functional characterization challenging because of the need to use detergents or other solubilizing agents when extracting them from their native lipid membranes. To aid membrane protein research, new methodologies are required to allow these proteins to be expressed and purified cheaply, easily, in high yield and to provide water soluble proteins for subsequent study. This mini review focuses on the relatively new area of water soluble membrane proteins and in particular two innovative approaches: the redesign of membrane proteins to yield water soluble variants and how adding solubilizing fusion proteins can help to overcome these challenges. This review also looks at naturally occurring membrane proteins, which are able to exist as stable, functional, water soluble assemblies with no alteration to their native sequence. PMID:27284043

  5. Membrane proteins: always an insoluble problem?

    PubMed Central

    Rawlings, Andrea E.

    2016-01-01

    Membrane proteins play crucial roles in cellular processes and are often important pharmacological drug targets. The hydrophobic properties of these proteins make full structural and functional characterization challenging because of the need to use detergents or other solubilizing agents when extracting them from their native lipid membranes. To aid membrane protein research, new methodologies are required to allow these proteins to be expressed and purified cheaply, easily, in high yield and to provide water soluble proteins for subsequent study. This mini review focuses on the relatively new area of water soluble membrane proteins and in particular two innovative approaches: the redesign of membrane proteins to yield water soluble variants and how adding solubilizing fusion proteins can help to overcome these challenges. This review also looks at naturally occurring membrane proteins, which are able to exist as stable, functional, water soluble assemblies with no alteration to their native sequence. PMID:27284043

  6. Membrane tension and peripheral protein density mediate membrane shape transitions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shi, Zheng; Baumgart, Tobias

    2015-01-01

    Endocytosis is a ubiquitous eukaryotic membrane budding, vesiculation and internalization process fulfilling numerous roles including compensation of membrane area increase after bursts of exocytosis. The mechanism of the coupling between these two processes to enable homeostasis is not well understood. Recently, an ultrafast endocytosis (UFE) pathway was revealed with a speed significantly exceeding classical clathrin-mediated endocytosis (CME). Membrane tension reduction is a potential mechanism by which endocytosis can be rapidly activated at remote sites. Here, we provide experimental evidence for a mechanism whereby membrane tension reduction initiates membrane budding and tubulation mediated by endocytic proteins, such as endophilin A1. We find that shape instabilities occur at well-defined membrane tensions and surface densities of endophilin. From our data, we obtain a membrane shape stability diagram that shows remarkable consistency with a quantitative model. This model applies to all laterally diffusive curvature-coupling proteins and therefore a wide range of endocytic proteins.

  7. Membrane tension and peripheral protein density mediate membrane shape transitions

    PubMed Central

    Shi, Zheng; Baumgart, Tobias

    2015-01-01

    Endocytosis is a ubiquitous eukaryotic membrane budding, vesiculation, and internalization process fulfilling numerous roles including compensation of membrane area increase after bursts of exocytosis. The mechanism of the coupling between these two processes to enable homeostasis is not well understood. Recently, an ultrafast endocytosis (UFE) pathway was revealed with a speed significantly exceeding classical clathrin-mediated endocytosis (CME). Membrane tension reduction is a potential mechanism by which endocytosis can be rapidly activated at remote sites. Here we provide experimental evidence for a mechanism whereby membrane tension reduction initiates membrane budding and tubulation mediated by endocytic proteins such as endophilin A1. We find that shape instabilities occur at well-defined membrane tensions and surface densities of endophilin. From our data, we obtain a membrane shape stability diagram that shows remarkable consistency with a quantitative model. This model applies to all laterally diffusive curvature coupling proteins and therefore a wide range of endocytic proteins. PMID:25569184

  8. Membrane tension and peripheral protein density mediate membrane shape transitions.

    PubMed

    Shi, Zheng; Baumgart, Tobias

    2015-01-01

    Endocytosis is a ubiquitous eukaryotic membrane budding, vesiculation and internalization process fulfilling numerous roles including compensation of membrane area increase after bursts of exocytosis. The mechanism of the coupling between these two processes to enable homeostasis is not well understood. Recently, an ultrafast endocytosis (UFE) pathway was revealed with a speed significantly exceeding classical clathrin-mediated endocytosis (CME). Membrane tension reduction is a potential mechanism by which endocytosis can be rapidly activated at remote sites. Here, we provide experimental evidence for a mechanism whereby membrane tension reduction initiates membrane budding and tubulation mediated by endocytic proteins, such as endophilin A1. We find that shape instabilities occur at well-defined membrane tensions and surface densities of endophilin. From our data, we obtain a membrane shape stability diagram that shows remarkable consistency with a quantitative model. This model applies to all laterally diffusive curvature-coupling proteins and therefore a wide range of endocytic proteins. PMID:25569184

  9. Protein-Induced Membrane Curvature Alters Local Membrane Tension

    PubMed Central

    Rangamani, Padmini; Mandadap, Kranthi K.; Oster, George

    2014-01-01

    Adsorption of proteins onto membranes can alter the local membrane curvature. This phenomenon has been observed in biological processes such as endocytosis, tubulation, and vesiculation. However, it is not clear how the local surface properties of the membrane, such as membrane tension, change in response to protein adsorption. In this article, we show that the partial differential equations arising from classical elastic model of lipid membranes, which account for simultaneous changes in shape and membrane tension due to protein adsorption in a local region, cannot be solved for nonaxisymmetric geometries using straightforward numerical techniques; instead, a viscous-elastic formulation is necessary to fully describe the system. Therefore, we develop a viscous-elastic model for inhomogeneous membranes of the Helfrich type. Using the newly available viscous-elastic model, we find that the lipids flow to accommodate changes in membrane curvature during protein adsorption. We show that, at the end of protein adsorption process, the system sustains a residual local tension to balance the difference between the actual mean curvature and the imposed spontaneous curvature. We also show that this change in membrane tension can have a functional impact such as altered response to pulling forces in the presence of proteins. PMID:25099814

  10. Solid State NMR and Protein-Protein Interactions in Membranes

    PubMed Central

    Miao, Yimin; Cross, Timothy A.

    2013-01-01

    Solid state NMR spectroscopy has evolved rapidly in recent years into an excellent tool for the characterization of membrane proteins and their complexes. In the past few years it has also become clear that the structure of membrane proteins, especially helical membrane proteins is determined, in part, by the membrane environment. Therefore, the modeling of this environment by a liquid crystalline lipid bilayer for solid state NMR has generated a unique tool for the characterization of native conformational states, local and global dynamics, and high resolution structure for these proteins. Protein-protein interactions can also benefit from this solid state NMR capability to characterize membrane proteins in a native-like environment. These complexes take the form of oligomeric structures and hetero-protein interactions both with water soluble proteins and other membrane proteins. PMID:24034903

  11. Solid state NMR and protein-protein interactions in membranes.

    PubMed

    Miao, Yimin; Cross, Timothy A

    2013-12-01

    Solid state NMR spectroscopy has evolved rapidly in recent years into an excellent tool for the characterization of membrane proteins and their complexes. In the past few years it has also become clear that the structure of membrane proteins, especially helical membrane proteins is determined, in part, by the membrane environment. Therefore, the modeling of this environment by a liquid crystalline lipid bilayer for solid state NMR has generated a unique tool for the characterization of native conformational states, local and global dynamics, and high-resolution structure for these proteins. Protein-protein interactions can also benefit from this solid state NMR capability to characterize membrane proteins in a native-like environment. These complexes take the form of oligomeric structures and hetero-protein interactions both with water-soluble proteins and other membrane proteins. PMID:24034903

  12. Functionalizing Microporous Membranes for Protein Purification and Protein Digestion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dong, Jinlan; Bruening, Merlin L.

    2015-07-01

    This review examines advances in the functionalization of microporous membranes for protein purification and the development of protease-containing membranes for controlled protein digestion prior to mass spectrometry analysis. Recent studies confirm that membranes are superior to bead-based columns for rapid protein capture, presumably because convective mass transport in membrane pores rapidly brings proteins to binding sites. Modification of porous membranes with functional polymeric films or TiO2 nanoparticles yields materials that selectively capture species ranging from phosphopeptides to His-tagged proteins, and protein-binding capacities often exceed those of commercial beads. Thin membranes also provide a convenient framework for creating enzyme-containing reactors that afford control over residence times. With millisecond residence times, reactors with immobilized proteases limit protein digestion to increase sequence coverage in mass spectrometry analysis and facilitate elucidation of protein structures. This review emphasizes the advantages of membrane-based techniques and concludes with some challenges for their practical application.

  13. Artificial membranes for membrane protein purification, functionality and structure studies.

    PubMed

    Parmar, Mayuriben J; Lousa, Carine De Marcos; Muench, Stephen P; Goldman, Adrian; Postis, Vincent L G

    2016-06-15

    Membrane proteins represent one of the most important targets for pharmaceutical companies. Unfortunately, technical limitations have long been a major hindrance in our understanding of the function and structure of such proteins. Recent years have seen the refinement of classical approaches and the emergence of new technologies that have resulted in a significant step forward in the field of membrane protein research. This review summarizes some of the current techniques used for studying membrane proteins, with overall advantages and drawbacks for each method. PMID:27284055

  14. Protein Homeostasis at the Plasma Membrane

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    The plasma membrane (PM) and endocytic protein quality control (QC) in conjunction with the endosomal sorting machinery either repairs or targets conformationally damaged membrane proteins for lysosomal/vacuolar degradation. Here, we provide an overview of emerging aspects of the underlying mechanisms of PM QC that fulfill a critical role in preserving cellular protein homeostasis in health and diseases. PMID:24985330

  15. Crystal Dehydration in Membrane Protein Crystallography.

    PubMed

    Sanchez-Weatherby, Juan; Moraes, Isabel

    2016-01-01

    Crystal dehydration has been successfully implemented to facilitate the structural solution of a number of soluble and membrane protein structures over the years. This chapter will present the currently available tools to undertake controlled crystal dehydration, focusing on some successful membrane protein cases. Also discussed here will be some practical considerations regarding membrane protein crystals and the relationship between different techniques in order to help researchers to select the most suitable technique for their projects. PMID:27553236

  16. Class II virus membrane fusion proteins

    SciTech Connect

    Kielian, Margaret . E-mail: kielian@aecom.yu.edu

    2006-01-05

    Enveloped animal viruses fuse their membrane with a host cell membrane, thus delivering the virus genetic material into the cytoplasm and initiating infection. This critical membrane fusion reaction is mediated by a virus transmembrane protein known as the fusion protein, which inserts its hydrophobic fusion peptide into the cell membrane and refolds to drive the fusion reaction. This review describes recent advances in our understanding of the structure and function of the class II fusion proteins of the alphaviruses and flaviviruses. Inhibition of the fusion protein refolding reaction confirms its importance in fusion and suggests new antiviral strategies for these medically important viruses.

  17. Serial Femtosecond Crystallography of Membrane Proteins.

    PubMed

    Zhu, Lan; Weierstall, Uwe; Cherezov, Vadim; Liu, Wei

    2016-01-01

    Membrane proteins, including G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs), constitute the most important drug targets. The increasing number of targets requires new structural information, which has proven tremendously challenging due to the difficulties in growing diffraction-quality crystals. Recent developments of serial femtosecond crystallography at X-ray free electron lasers combined with the use of membrane-mimetic gel-like matrix of lipidic cubic phase (LCP-SFX) for crystal growth and delivery hold significant promise to accelerate structural studies of membrane proteins. This chapter describes the development and current status of the LCP-SFX technology and elaborates its future role in structural biology of membrane proteins. PMID:27553241

  18. Mapping membrane protein structure with fluorescence

    PubMed Central

    Taraska, Justin W.

    2012-01-01

    Membrane proteins regulate many cellular processes including signaling cascades, ion transport, membrane fusion, and cell-to-cell communications. Understanding the architecture and conformational fluctuations of these proteins is critical to understanding their regulation and functions. Fluorescence methods including intensity mapping, fluorescence resonance energy transfer, and photo-induced electron transfer, allow for targeted measurements of domains within membrane proteins. These methods can reveal how a protein is structured and how it transitions between different conformational states. Here, I will review recent work done using fluorescence to map the structures of membrane proteins, focusing on how each of these methods can be applied to understanding the dynamic nature of individual membrane proteins and protein complexes. PMID:22445227

  19. Unlocking the eukaryotic membrane protein structural proteome

    PubMed Central

    Lee, John Kyongwon; Stroud, Robert Michael

    2012-01-01

    Summary Most of the 231 unique membrane protein structures (as of 3/2010) are of bacterial membrane proteins (MPs) expressed in bacteria, or eukaryotic MPs from natural sources. However eukaryotic membrane proteins, especially those with more than three membrane crossings rarely succumb to any suitable expression in bacterial cells. They typically require expression in eukaryotic cells that can provide appropriate endoplasmic reticulum, chaperones, targeting and post-translational processing. In evidence, only ~20 eukaryotic MP structures have resulted from heterologous expression. This is required for a general approach to target particular human or pathogen membrane proteins of importance to human health. The first of these appeared in 2005. Our review addresses the special issues that pertain to the expression of eukaryotic and human membrane proteins, and recent advances in the tool kit for crystallization and structure determination. PMID:20739007

  20. Membrane Protein Insertion at the Endoplasmic Reticulum

    PubMed Central

    Shao, Sichen; Hegde, Ramanujan S.

    2014-01-01

    Integral membrane proteins of the cell surface and most intracellular compartments of eukaryotic cells are assembled at the endoplasmic reticulum. Two highly conserved and parallel pathways mediate membrane protein targeting to and insertion into this organelle. The classical cotranslational pathway, utilized by most membrane proteins, involves targeting by the signal recognition particle followed by insertion via the Sec61 translocon. A more specialized posttranslational pathway, employed by many tail-anchored membrane proteins, is composed of entirely different factors centered around a cytosolic ATPase termed TRC40 or Get3. Both of these pathways overcome the same biophysical challenges of ferrying hydrophobic cargo through an aqueous milieu, selectively delivering it to one among several intracellular membranes and asymmetrically integrating its transmembrane domain(s) into the lipid bilayer. Here, we review the conceptual and mechanistic themes underlying these core membrane protein insertion pathways, the complexities that challenge our understanding, and future directions to over-come these obstacles. PMID:21801011

  1. Circular dichroism spectroscopy of membrane proteins.

    PubMed

    Miles, A J; Wallace, B A

    2016-09-21

    Circular dichroism (CD) spectroscopy is a well-established technique for studying the secondary structures, dynamics, folding pathways, and interactions of soluble proteins, and is complementary to the high resolution but generally static structures produced by X-ray crystallography, NMR spectroscopy, and cryo electron microscopy. CD spectroscopy has special relevance for the study of membrane proteins, which are difficult to crystallise and largely ignored in structural genomics projects. However, the requirement for membrane proteins to be embedded in amphipathic environments such as membranes, lipid vesicles, detergent micelles, bicelles, oriented bilayers, or nanodiscs, in order for them to be soluble or dispersed in solution whilst maintaining their structure and function, necessitates the use of different experimental and analytical approaches than those employed for soluble proteins. This review discusses specialised methods for collecting and analysing membrane protein CD data, highlighting where protocols for soluble and membrane proteins diverge. PMID:27347568

  2. Phosphoinositide Control of Membrane Protein Function

    PubMed Central

    Logothetis, Diomedes E.; Petrou, Vasileios I.; Zhang, Miao; Mahajan, Rahul; Meng, Xuan-Yu; Adney, Scott K.; Cui, Meng; Baki, Lia

    2015-01-01

    Anionic phospholipids are critical constituents of the inner leaflet of the plasma membrane, ensuring appropriate membrane topology of transmembrane proteins. Additionally, in eukaryotes, the negatively charged phosphoinositides serve as key signals not only through their hydrolysis products but also through direct control of transmembrane protein function. Direct phosphoinositide control of the activity of ion channels and transporters has been the most convincing case of the critical importance of phospholipid-protein interactions in the functional control of membrane proteins. Furthermore, second messengers, such as [Ca2+]i, or posttranslational modifications, such as phosphorylation, can directly or allosterically fine-tune phospholipid-protein interactions and modulate activity. Recent advances in structure determination of membrane proteins have allowed investigators to obtain complexes of ion channels with phosphoinositides and to use computational and experimental approaches to probe the dynamic mechanisms by which lipid-protein interactions control active and inactive protein states. PMID:25293526

  3. Effects of protein crowding on membrane systems.

    PubMed

    Guigas, Gernot; Weiss, Matthias

    2016-10-01

    Cellular membranes are typically decorated with a plethora of embedded and adsorbed macromolecules, e.g. proteins, that participate in numerous vital processes. With typical surface densities of 30,000 proteins per μm(2) cellular membranes are indeed crowded places that leave only few nanometers of private space for individual proteins. Here, we review recent advances in our understanding of protein crowding in membrane systems. We first give a brief overview on state-of-the-art approaches in experiment and simulation that are frequently used to study crowded membranes. After that, we review how crowding can affect diffusive transport of proteins and lipids in membrane systems. Next, we discuss lipid and protein sorting in crowded membrane systems, including effects like protein cluster formation, phase segregation, and lipid droplet formation. Subsequently, we highlight recent progress in uncovering crowding-induced conformational changes of membranes, e.g. membrane budding and vesicle formation. Finally, we give a short outlook on potential future developments in the field of crowded membrane systems. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: Biosimulations edited by Ilpo Vattulainen and Tomasz Róg. PMID:26724385

  4. Tandem Facial Amphiphiles for Membrane Protein Stabilization

    PubMed Central

    Chae, Pil Seok; Gotfryd, Kamil; Pacyna, Jennifer; Miercke, Larry J. W.; Rasmussen, Søren G. F.; Robbins, Rebecca A.; Rana, Rohini R.; Loland, Claus J.; Kobilka, Brian; Stroud, Robert; Byrne, Bernadette; Gether, Ulrik; Gellman, Samuel H.

    2010-01-01

    We describe a new type of synthetic amphiphile that is intended to support biochemical characterization of intrinsic membrane proteins. Members of this new family displayed favorable behavior with four of five membrane proteins tested, and these amphiphiles formed relatively small micelles. PMID:21049926

  5. Crystallization of Membrane protein under Microgravity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Henning, C.; Frank, J.; Laubender, G.; Fromme, P.

    2002-01-01

    Proteins are biological molecules which catalyse all essential reactions of cells. The knowledge on the structure of these molecular machines is necessary for the understanding of their function. Many diseases are caused by defects of membrane proteins. In order to develop new medical therapies the construction principle of the proteins must be known. The main difficulty in the determination of the structure of these membrane protein complexes is the crystallisation. Membrane proteins are normally not soluble in water and have therefore to be solubilised from the membranes by use of detergents. The whole protein-detergent micelle must be crystallised to maintain the functional integrity of the protein complexes. These difficulties are the reasons for the fact that crystals of membrane proteins are difficult to grow and most of them are badly ordered, being not appropriate for X-ray structure analysis. The crystallisation of proteins under microgravity leads to the growth of better-ordered crystals by reduction of nucleation rate and the undisturbed growth of the hovering seeds by the absence of sedimentation and convection. The successful crystallistation of a membrane protein under microgravity has been performed during the space shuttle missions USML2 and STS95 in the Space Shuttle with Photosystem I as model protein. Photosystem I is a large membrane protein complex which catalyses one of the first and fundamental steps in oxygen photosynthesis. The crystals of Photosystem I, grown under microgravity were twenty times larger than all Photosystem I crystals which have been grown on earth. They were the basis for the determination of an improved X-ray structure of Photo- system I. These experiments opened the way for the structure enlightenment of more membrane proteins on the basis of microgravity experiments. On board of the International Space Station ideal conditions for the crystallisation of proteins under zero gravity are existing.

  6. Protein Solvation in Membranes and at Water-Membrane Interfaces

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Pohorille, Andrew; Chipot, Christophe; Wilson, Michael A.

    2002-01-01

    Different salvation properties of water and membranes mediate a host of biologically important processes, such as folding, insertion into a lipid bilayer, associations and functions of membrane proteins. These processes will be discussed in several examples involving synthetic and natural peptides. In particular, a mechanism by which a helical peptide becomes inserted into a model membrane will be described. Further, the molecular mechanism of recognition and association of protein helical segments in membranes will be discussed. These processes are crucial for proper functioning of a cell. A membrane-spanning domain of glycophorin A, which exists as a helical dimer, serves as the model system. For this system, the free energy of dissociation of the helices is being determined for both the wild type and a mutant, in which dimerization is disrupted.

  7. IFITM Proteins Restrict Viral Membrane Hemifusion

    PubMed Central

    Golfetto, Ottavia; Bungart, Brittani; Li, Minghua; Ding, Shilei; He, Yuxian; Liang, Chen; Lee, James C.; Gratton, Enrico; Cohen, Fredric S.; Liu, Shan-Lu

    2013-01-01

    The interferon-inducible transmembrane (IFITM) protein family represents a new class of cellular restriction factors that block early stages of viral replication; the underlying mechanism is currently not known. Here we provide evidence that IFITM proteins restrict membrane fusion induced by representatives of all three classes of viral membrane fusion proteins. IFITM1 profoundly suppressed syncytia formation and cell-cell fusion induced by almost all viral fusion proteins examined; IFITM2 and IFITM3 also strongly inhibited their fusion, with efficiency somewhat dependent on cell types. Furthermore, treatment of cells with IFN also markedly inhibited viral membrane fusion and entry. By using the Jaagsiekte sheep retrovirus envelope and influenza A virus hemagglutinin as models for study, we showed that IFITM-mediated restriction on membrane fusion is not at the steps of receptor- and/or low pH-mediated triggering; instead, the creation of hemifusion was essentially blocked by IFITMs. Chlorpromazine (CPZ), a chemical known to promote the transition from hemifusion to full fusion, was unable to rescue the IFITM-mediated restriction on fusion. In contrast, oleic acid (OA), a lipid analog that generates negative spontaneous curvature and thereby promotes hemifusion, virtually overcame the restriction. To explore the possible effect of IFITM proteins on membrane molecular order and fluidity, we performed fluorescence labeling with Laurdan, in conjunction with two-photon laser scanning and fluorescence-lifetime imaging microscopy (FLIM). We observed that the generalized polarizations (GPs) and fluorescence lifetimes of cell membranes expressing IFITM proteins were greatly enhanced, indicating higher molecularly ordered and less fluidized membranes. Collectively, our data demonstrated that IFITM proteins suppress viral membrane fusion before the creation of hemifusion, and suggested that they may do so by reducing membrane fluidity and conferring a positive spontaneous

  8. Membrane Protein Crystallization Using Laser Irradiation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Adachi, Hiroaki; Murakami, Satoshi; Niino, Ai; Matsumura, Hiroyoshi; Takano, Kazufumi; Inoue, Tsuyoshi; Mori, Yusuke; Yamaguchi, Akihito; Sasaki, Takatomo

    2004-10-01

    We demonstrate the crystallization of a membrane protein using femtosecond laser irradiation. This method, which we call the laser irradiated growth technique (LIGHT), is useful for producing AcrB crystals in a solution of low supersaturation range. LIGHT is characterized by reduced nucleation times. This feature is important for crystallizing membrane proteins because of their labile properties when solubilized as protein-detergent micelles. Using LIGHT, high-quality crystals of a membrane transporter protein, AcrB, were obtained. The resulting crystals were found to be of sufficiently high resolution for X-ray diffraction. The results reported here indicate that LIGHT is a powerful tool for membrane protein crystallization, as well as for the growth of soluble proteins.

  9. Genome-wide Membrane Protein Structure Prediction

    PubMed Central

    Piccoli, Stefano; Suku, Eda; Garonzi, Marianna; Giorgetti, Alejandro

    2013-01-01

    Transmembrane proteins allow cells to extensively communicate with the external world in a very accurate and specific way. They form principal nodes in several signaling pathways and attract large interest in therapeutic intervention, as the majority pharmaceutical compounds target membrane proteins. Thus, according to the current genome annotation methods, a detailed structural/functional characterization at the protein level of each of the elements codified in the genome is also required. The extreme difficulty in obtaining high-resolution three-dimensional structures, calls for computational approaches. Here we review to which extent the efforts made in the last few years, combining the structural characterization of membrane proteins with protein bioinformatics techniques, could help describing membrane proteins at a genome-wide scale. In particular we analyze the use of comparative modeling techniques as a way of overcoming the lack of high-resolution three-dimensional structures in the human membrane proteome. PMID:24403851

  10. Multipass Membrane Protein Structure Prediction Using Rosetta

    PubMed Central

    Yarov-Yarovoy, Vladimir; Schonbrun, Jack; Baker, David

    2006-01-01

    We describe the adaptation of the Rosetta de novo structure prediction method for prediction of helical transmembrane protein structures. The membrane environment is modeled by embedding the protein chain into a model membrane represented by parallel planes defining hydrophobic, interface, and polar membrane layers for each energy evaluation. The optimal embedding is determined by maximizing the exposure of surface hydrophobic residues within the membrane and minimizing hydrophobic exposure outside of the membrane. Protein conformations are built up using the Rosetta fragment assembly method and evaluated using a new membrane-specific version of the Rosetta low-resolution energy function in which residue–residue and residue–environment interactions are functions of the membrane layer in addition to amino acid identity, distance, and density. We find that lower energy and more native-like structures are achieved by sequential addition of helices to a growing chain, which may mimic some aspects of helical protein biogenesis after translocation, rather than folding the whole chain simultaneously as in the Rosetta soluble protein prediction method. In tests on 12 membrane proteins for which the structure is known, between 51 and 145 residues were predicted with root-mean-square deviation <4Å from the native structure. PMID:16372357

  11. Functional dynamics of cell surface membrane proteins

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nishida, Noritaka; Osawa, Masanori; Takeuchi, Koh; Imai, Shunsuke; Stampoulis, Pavlos; Kofuku, Yutaka; Ueda, Takumi; Shimada, Ichio

    2014-04-01

    Cell surface receptors are integral membrane proteins that receive external stimuli, and transmit signals across plasma membranes. In the conventional view of receptor activation, ligand binding to the extracellular side of the receptor induces conformational changes, which convert the structure of the receptor into an active conformation. However, recent NMR studies of cell surface membrane proteins have revealed that their structures are more dynamic than previously envisioned, and they fluctuate between multiple conformations in an equilibrium on various timescales. In addition, NMR analyses, along with biochemical and cell biological experiments indicated that such dynamical properties are critical for the proper functions of the receptors. In this review, we will describe several NMR studies that revealed direct linkage between the structural dynamics and the functions of the cell surface membrane proteins, such as G-protein coupled receptors (GPCRs), ion channels, membrane transporters, and cell adhesion molecules.

  12. Inherently Tunable Electrostatic Assembly of Membrane Proteins

    SciTech Connect

    Liang, H.; Whited, G.; Nguyen, C.; Okerlund, A.; Stucky, G.D.

    2009-05-19

    Membrane proteins are a class of nanoscopic entities that control the matter, energy, and information transport across cellular boundaries. Electrostatic interactions are shown to direct the rapid co-assembly of proteorhodopsin (PR) and lipids into long-range crystalline arrays. The roles of inherent charge variations on lipid membranes and PR variants with different compositions are examined by tuning recombinant PR variants with different extramembrane domain sizes and charged amino acid substitutions, lipid membrane compositions, and lipid-to-PR stoichiometric ratios. Rational control of this predominantly electrostatic assembly for PR crystallization is demonstrated, and the same principles should be applicable to the assembly and crystallization of other integral membrane proteins.

  13. Active Nuclear Import of Membrane Proteins Revisited

    PubMed Central

    Laba, Justyna K.; Steen, Anton; Popken, Petra; Chernova, Alina; Poolman, Bert; Veenhoff, Liesbeth M.

    2015-01-01

    It is poorly understood how membrane proteins destined for the inner nuclear membrane pass the crowded environment of the Nuclear Pore Complex (NPC). For the Saccharomyces cerevisiae proteins Src1/Heh1 and Heh2, a transport mechanism was proposed where the transmembrane domains diffuse through the membrane while the extralumenal domains encoding a nuclear localization signal (NLS) and intrinsically disordered linker (L) are accompanied by transport factors and travel through the NPC. Here, we validate the proposed mechanism and explore and discuss alternative interpretations of the data. First, to disprove an interpretation where the membrane proteins become membrane embedded only after nuclear import, we present biochemical and localization data to support that the previously used, as well as newly designed reporter proteins are membrane-embedded irrespective of the presence of the sorting signals, the specific transmembrane domain (multipass or tail anchored), independent of GET, and also under conditions that the proteins are trapped in the NPC. Second, using the recently established size limit for passive diffusion of membrane proteins in yeast, and using an improved assay, we confirm active import of polytopic membrane protein with extralumenal soluble domains larger than those that can pass by diffusion on similar timescales. This reinforces that NLS-L dependent active transport is distinct from passive diffusion. Thirdly, we revisit the proposed route through the center of the NPC and conclude that the previously used trapping assay is, unfortunately, poorly suited to address the route through the NPC, and the route thus remains unresolved. Apart from the uncertainty about the route through the NPC, the data confirm active, transport factor dependent, nuclear transport of membrane-embedded mono- and polytopic membrane proteins in baker’s yeast. PMID:26473931

  14. Active Nuclear Import of Membrane Proteins Revisited.

    PubMed

    Laba, Justyna K; Steen, Anton; Popken, Petra; Chernova, Alina; Poolman, Bert; Veenhoff, Liesbeth M

    2015-01-01

    It is poorly understood how membrane proteins destined for the inner nuclear membrane pass the crowded environment of the Nuclear Pore Complex (NPC). For the Saccharomyces cerevisiae proteins Src1/Heh1 and Heh2, a transport mechanism was proposed where the transmembrane domains diffuse through the membrane while the extralumenal domains encoding a nuclear localization signal (NLS) and intrinsically disordered linker (L) are accompanied by transport factors and travel through the NPC. Here, we validate the proposed mechanism and explore and discuss alternative interpretations of the data. First, to disprove an interpretation where the membrane proteins become membrane embedded only after nuclear import, we present biochemical and localization data to support that the previously used, as well as newly designed reporter proteins are membrane-embedded irrespective of the presence of the sorting signals, the specific transmembrane domain (multipass or tail anchored), independent of GET, and also under conditions that the proteins are trapped in the NPC. Second, using the recently established size limit for passive diffusion of membrane proteins in yeast, and using an improved assay, we confirm active import of polytopic membrane protein with extralumenal soluble domains larger than those that can pass by diffusion on similar timescales. This reinforces that NLS-L dependent active transport is distinct from passive diffusion. Thirdly, we revisit the proposed route through the center of the NPC and conclude that the previously used trapping assay is, unfortunately, poorly suited to address the route through the NPC, and the route thus remains unresolved. Apart from the uncertainty about the route through the NPC, the data confirm active, transport factor dependent, nuclear transport of membrane-embedded mono- and polytopic membrane proteins in baker's yeast. PMID:26473931

  15. Helical Membrane Protein Conformations and their Environment

    PubMed Central

    Cross, Timothy A.; Murray, Dylan T.; Watts, Anthony

    2013-01-01

    Evidence that membrane proteins respond conformationally and functionally to their environment is gaining pace. Structural models, by necessity, have been characterized in preparations where the protein has been removed from its native environment. Different structural methods have used various membrane mimetics that have recently included lipid bilayers as a more native-like environment. Structural tools applied to lipid bilayer-embedded integral proteins are informing us about important generic characteristics of how membrane proteins respond to the lipid environment as compared with their response to other non-lipid environments. Here, we review the current status of the field, with specific reference to observations of some well-studied α-helical membrane proteins, as a starting point to aid the development of possible generic principals for model refinement. PMID:23996195

  16. Glasslike Membrane Protein Diffusion in a Crowded Membrane.

    PubMed

    Munguira, Ignacio; Casuso, Ignacio; Takahashi, Hirohide; Rico, Felix; Miyagi, Atsushi; Chami, Mohamed; Scheuring, Simon

    2016-02-23

    Many functions of the plasma membrane depend critically on its structure and dynamics. Observation of anomalous diffusion in vivo and in vitro using fluorescence microscopy and single particle tracking has advanced our concept of the membrane from a homogeneous fluid bilayer with freely diffusing proteins to a highly organized crowded and clustered mosaic of lipids and proteins. Unfortunately, anomalous diffusion could not be related to local molecular details given the lack of direct and unlabeled molecular observation capabilities. Here, we use high-speed atomic force microscopy and a novel analysis methodology to analyze the pore forming protein lysenin in a highly crowded environment and document coexistence of several diffusion regimes within one membrane. We show the formation of local glassy phases, where proteins are trapped in neighbor-formed cages for time scales up to 10 s, which had not been previously experimentally reported for biological membranes. Furthermore, around solid-like patches and immobile molecules a slower glass phase is detected leading to protein trapping and creating a perimeter of decreased membrane diffusion. PMID:26859708

  17. Membrane protein expression in Lactococcus lactis.

    PubMed

    King, Martin S; Boes, Christoph; Kunji, Edmund R S

    2015-01-01

    The Gram-positive bacterium Lactococcus lactis has many properties that are ideal for the overproduction of membrane proteins in a functional form. Growth of lactococci is rapid, proceeds to high cell densities, and does not require aeration, which facilitates large-scale fermentation. The available promoter systems are strong and tightly regulated, allowing expression of toxic gene products in a controlled manner. Expressed membrane proteins are targeted exclusively to the cytoplasmic membrane, allowing the use of ionophores, ligands, and inhibitors to study activity of the membrane protein in whole cells. Constructed plasmids are stable and expression levels are highly reproducible. The relatively small genome size of the organism causes little redundancy, which facilitates complementation studies and allows for easier purification. The produced membrane proteins are often stable, as the organism has limited proteolytic capability, and they are readily solubilized from the membrane with mild detergents. Lactococci are multiple amino acid auxotrophs, allowing the incorporation of labels, such as selenomethionine. Among the few disadvantages are the low transformation frequency, AT-rich codon usage, and resistance to lysis by mechanical means, but these problems can be overcome fairly easily. We will describe in detail the protocols used to express membrane proteins in L. lactis, from cloning of the target gene to the isolation of membrane vesicles for the determination of expression levels. PMID:25857778

  18. Polyene antibiotic that inhibits membrane transport proteins

    PubMed Central

    te Welscher, Yvonne Maria; van Leeuwen, Martin Richard; de Kruijff, Ben; Dijksterhuis, Jan; Breukink, Eefjan

    2012-01-01

    The limited therapeutic arsenal and the increase in reports of fungal resistance to multiple antifungal agents have made fungal infections a major therapeutic challenge. The polyene antibiotics are the only group of antifungal antibiotics that directly target the plasma membrane via a specific interaction with the main fungal sterol, ergosterol, often resulting in membrane permeabilization. In contrast to other polyene antibiotics that form pores in the membrane, the mode of action of natamycin has remained obscure but is not related to membrane permeabilization. Here, we demonstrate that natamycin inhibits growth of yeasts and fungi via the immediate inhibition of amino acid and glucose transport across the plasma membrane. This is attributable to ergosterol-specific and reversible inhibition of membrane transport proteins. It is proposed that ergosterol-dependent inhibition of membrane proteins is a general mode of action of all the polyene antibiotics, of which some have been shown additionally to permeabilize the plasma membrane. Our results imply that sterol-protein interactions are fundamentally important for protein function even for those proteins that are not known to reside in sterol-rich domains. PMID:22733749

  19. Polyene antibiotic that inhibits membrane transport proteins.

    PubMed

    te Welscher, Yvonne Maria; van Leeuwen, Martin Richard; de Kruijff, Ben; Dijksterhuis, Jan; Breukink, Eefjan

    2012-07-10

    The limited therapeutic arsenal and the increase in reports of fungal resistance to multiple antifungal agents have made fungal infections a major therapeutic challenge. The polyene antibiotics are the only group of antifungal antibiotics that directly target the plasma membrane via a specific interaction with the main fungal sterol, ergosterol, often resulting in membrane permeabilization. In contrast to other polyene antibiotics that form pores in the membrane, the mode of action of natamycin has remained obscure but is not related to membrane permeabilization. Here, we demonstrate that natamycin inhibits growth of yeasts and fungi via the immediate inhibition of amino acid and glucose transport across the plasma membrane. This is attributable to ergosterol-specific and reversible inhibition of membrane transport proteins. It is proposed that ergosterol-dependent inhibition of membrane proteins is a general mode of action of all the polyene antibiotics, of which some have been shown additionally to permeabilize the plasma membrane. Our results imply that sterol-protein interactions are fundamentally important for protein function even for those proteins that are not known to reside in sterol-rich domains. PMID:22733749

  20. Solid-state NMR and Membrane Proteins

    PubMed Central

    Opella, Stanley J.

    2015-01-01

    The native environment for a membrane protein is a phospholipid bilayer. Because the protein is immobilized on NMR timescales by the interactions within a bilayer membrane, solid-state NMR methods are essential to obtain high-resolution spectra. Approaches have been developed for both unoriented and oriented samples, however, they all rest on the foundation of the most fundamental aspects solid-state NMR, and the chemical shift and homo- and hetero-nuclear dipole-dipole interactions. Solid-state NMR has advanced sufficiently to enable the structures of membrane proteins to be determined under near-native conditions in phospholipid bilayers. PMID:25681966

  1. Biophysical EPR Studies Applied to Membrane Proteins

    PubMed Central

    Sahu, Indra D; Lorigan, Gary A

    2015-01-01

    Membrane proteins are very important in controlling bioenergetics, functional activity, and initializing signal pathways in a wide variety of complicated biological systems. They also represent approximately 50% of the potential drug targets. EPR spectroscopy is a very popular and powerful biophysical tool that is used to study the structural and dynamic properties of membrane proteins. In this article, a basic overview of the most commonly used EPR techniques and examples of recent applications to answer pertinent structural and dynamic related questions on membrane protein systems will be presented. PMID:26855825

  2. Towards Simulations of Outer Membrane Proteins in Lipopolysaccharide Membranes

    SciTech Connect

    Soares, Thereza A.; Straatsma, TP

    2007-12-26

    Biomolecular simulation derived properties of LPS membranes that impact the structural and internal dynamics of transmembrane proteins are shown to exhibit good agreement with available experimental data within the time scale simulated, chosen force field and simulation conditions. The molecular model used offers an accurate representation of the LPS layer, including the high asymmetry and low fluidity characteristics of outer membranes. This contribution describes the data intensive analysis of the large molecular time trajectories generated for these systems using massively parallel computing resources.

  3. Membrane proteins: is the future disc shaped?

    PubMed

    Lee, Sarah C; Pollock, Naomi L

    2016-08-15

    The use of styrene maleic acid lipid particles (SMALPs) for the purification of membrane proteins (MPs) is a rapidly developing technology. The amphiphilic copolymer of styrene and maleic acid (SMA) disrupts biological membranes and can extract membrane proteins in nanodiscs of approximately 10 nm diameter. These discs contain SMA, protein and membrane lipids. There is evidence that MPs in SMALPs retain their native structures and functions, in some cases with enhanced thermal stability. In addition, the method is compatible with biological buffers and a wide variety of biophysical and structural analysis techniques. The use of SMALPs to solubilize and stabilize MPs offers a new approach in our attempts to understand, and influence, the structure and function of MPs and biological membranes. In this review, we critically assess progress with this method, address some of the associated technical challenges, and discuss opportunities for exploiting SMA and SMALPs to expand our understanding of MP biology. PMID:27528746

  4. EH domain proteins regulate cardiac membrane protein targeting

    PubMed Central

    Gudmundsson, Hjalti; Hund, Thomas J.; Wright, Patrick J.; Kline, Crystal F.; Snyder, Jedidiah S.; Qian, Lan; Koval, Olha M.; Cunha, Shane R.; George, Manju; Rainey, Mark A.; Kashef, Farshid E.; Dun, Wen; Boyden, Penelope A.; Anderson, Mark E.; Band, Hamid; Mohler, Peter J.

    2010-01-01

    Rationale Cardiac membrane excitability is tightly regulated by an integrated network of membrane-associated ion channels, transporters, receptors, and signaling molecules. Membrane protein dynamics in health and disease are maintained by a complex ensemble of intracellular targeting, scaffolding, recycling, and degradation pathways. Surprisingly, despite decades of research linking dysfunction in membrane protein trafficking with human cardiovascular disease, essentially nothing is known regarding the molecular identity or function of these intracellular targeting pathways in excitable cardiomyocytes. Objective We sought to discover novel pathways for membrane protein targeting in primary cardiomyocytes. Methods and Results We report the initial characterization of a large family of membrane trafficking proteins in human heart. We employed a tissue-wide screen for novel ankyrin-associated trafficking proteins and identified four members of a unique Eps15 homology (EH) domain-containing protein family (EHD1, EHD2, EHD3, EHD4) that serve critical roles in endosome-based membrane protein targeting in other cell types. We show that EHD1-4 directly associate with ankyrin, provide the first information on the expression and localization of these molecules in primary cardiomyocytes, and demonstrate that EHD1-4 are co-expressed with ankyrin-B in the myocyte perinuclear region. Notably, the expression of multiple EHD proteins is increased in animal models lacking ankyrin-B, and EHD3-deficient cardiomyocytes display aberrant ankyrin-B localization and selective loss of Na/Ca exchanger expression and function. Finally, we report significant modulation of EHD expression following myocardial infarction, suggesting that these proteins may play a key role in regulating membrane excitability in normal and diseased heart. Conclusions Our findings identify and characterize a new class of cardiac trafficking proteins, define the first group of proteins associated with the ankyrin

  5. Detergents in Membrane Protein Purification and Crystallisation.

    PubMed

    Anandan, Anandhi; Vrielink, Alice

    2016-01-01

    Detergents play a significant role in structural and functional characterisation of integral membrane proteins (IMPs). IMPs reside in the biological membranes and exhibit a great variation in their structural and physical properties. For in vitro biophysical studies, structural and functional analyses, IMPs need to be extracted from the membrane lipid bilayer environment in which they are found and purified to homogeneity while maintaining a folded and functionally active state. Detergents are capable of successfully solubilising and extracting the IMPs from the membrane bilayers. A number of detergents with varying structure and physicochemical properties are commercially available and can be applied for this purpose. Nevertheless, it is important to choose a detergent that is not only able to extract the membrane protein but also provide an optimal environment while retaining the correct structural and physical properties of the protein molecule. Choosing the best detergent for this task can be made possible by understanding the physical and chemical properties of the different detergents and their interaction with the IMPs. In addition, understanding the mechanism of membrane solubilisation and protein extraction along with crystallisation requirements, if crystallographic studies are going to be undertaken, can help in choosing the best detergent for the purpose. This chapter aims to present the fundamental properties of detergents and highlight information relevant to IMP crystallisation. The first section of the chapter reviews the physicochemical properties of detergents and parameters essential for predicting their behaviour in solution. The second section covers the interaction of detergents with the biologic membranes and proteins followed by their role in membrane protein crystallisation. The last section will briefly cover the types of detergent and their properties focusing on custom designed detergents for membrane protein studies. PMID:27553232

  6. Mass Spectrometry of Intact Membrane Protein Complexes

    PubMed Central

    Laganowsky, Arthur; Reading, Eamonn; Hopper, Jonathan T.S.; Robinson, Carol V.

    2014-01-01

    Mass spectrometry of intact soluble protein complexes has emerged as a powerful technique to study the stoichiometry, structure-function and dynamics of protein assemblies. Recent developments have extended this technique to the study of membrane protein complexes where it has already revealed subunit stoichiometries and specific phospholipid interactions. Here, we describe a protocol for mass spectrometry of membrane protein complexes. The protocol begins with preparation of the membrane protein complex enabling not only the direct assessment of stoichiometry, delipidation, and quality of the target complex, but also evaluation of the purification strategy. A detailed list of compatible non-ionic detergents is included, along with a protocol for screening detergents to find an optimal one for mass spectrometry, biochemical and structural studies. This protocol also covers the preparation of lipids for protein-lipid binding studies and includes detailed settings for a Q-ToF mass spectrometer after introduction of complexes from gold-coated nanoflow capillaries. PMID:23471109

  7. Detergent-Free Membrane Protein Purification.

    PubMed

    Rothnie, Alice J

    2016-01-01

    Membrane proteins are localized within a lipid bilayer; in order to purify them for functional and structural studies the first step must involve solubilizing or extracting the protein from these lipids. To date this has been achieved using detergents which disrupt the bilayer and bind to the protein in the transmembrane region. However finding conditions for optimal extraction, without destabilizing protein structure, is time consuming and expensive. Here we present a recently-developed method using a styrene-maleic acid (SMA) co-polymer instead of detergents. The SMA co-polymer extracts membrane proteins in a small disc of lipid bilayer which can be used for affinity chromatography purification, thus enabling the purification of membrane proteins while maintaining their native lipid bilayer environment. PMID:27485341

  8. Dielectrophoretic Sorting of Membrane Protein Nanocrystals

    PubMed Central

    Abdallah, Bahige G.; Chao, Tzu-Chiao; Kupitz, Christopher; Fromme, Petra; Ros, Alexandra

    2013-01-01

    Structure elucidation of large membrane protein complexes still comprises a considerable challenge yet is a key factor in drug development and disease combat. Femtosecond nanocrystallography is an emerging technique with which structural information of membrane proteins is obtained without the need to grow large crystals, thus overcoming the experimental riddle faced in traditional crystallography methods. Here, we demonstrate for the first time a microfluidic device capable of sorting membrane protein crystals based on size using dielectrophoresis. We demonstrate the excellent sorting power of this new approach with numerical simulations of selected sub-micrometer beads in excellent agreement with experimental observations. Crystals from batch crystallization broths of the huge membrane protein complex photosystem I were sorted without further treatment, resulting in a high degree of monodispersity and crystallinity in the ~ 100 nm size range. Microfluidic integration, continuous sorting, and nanometer-sized crystal fractions make this method ideal for direct coupling to femtosecond nanocrystallography. PMID:24004002

  9. Efficient preparation and analysis of membrane and membrane protein systems.

    PubMed

    Javanainen, Matti; Martinez-Seara, Hector

    2016-10-01

    Molecular dynamics (MD) simulations have become a highly important technique to consider lipid membrane systems, and quite often they provide considerable added value to laboratory experiments. Rapid development of both software and hardware has enabled the increase of time and size scales reachable by MD simulations to match those attainable by several accurate experimental techniques. However, until recently, the quality and maturity of software tools available for building membrane models for simulations as well as analyzing the results of these simulations have seriously lagged behind. Here, we discuss the recent developments of such tools from the end-users' point of view. In particular, we review the software that can be employed to build lipid bilayers and other related structures with or without embedded membrane proteins to be employed in MD simulations. Additionally, we provide a brief critical insight into force fields and MD packages commonly used for membrane and membrane protein simulations. Finally, we list analysis tools that can be used to study the properties of membrane and membrane protein systems. In all these points we comment on the respective compatibility of the covered tools. We also share our opinion on the current state of the available software. We briefly discuss the most commonly employed tools and platforms on which new software can be built. We conclude the review by providing a few ideas and guidelines on how the development of tools can be further boosted to catch up with the rapid pace at which the field of membrane simulation progresses. This includes improving the compatibility between software tools and promoting the openness of the codes on which these applications rely. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: Biosimulations edited by Ilpo Vattulainen and Tomasz Róg. PMID:26947184

  10. NMR of Membrane Proteins: Beyond Crystals.

    PubMed

    Rajesh, Sundaresan; Overduin, Michael; Bonev, Boyan B

    2016-01-01

    Membrane proteins are essential for the flow of signals, nutrients and energy between cells and between compartments of the cell. Their mechanisms can only be fully understood once the precise structures, dynamics and interactions involved are defined at atomic resolution. Through advances in solution and solid state NMR spectroscopy, this information is now available, as demonstrated by recent studies of stable peripheral and transmembrane proteins. Here we highlight recent cases of G-protein coupled receptors, outer membrane proteins, such as VDAC, phosphoinositide sensors, such as the FAPP-1 pleckstrin homology domain, and enzymes including the metalloproteinase MMP-12. The studies highlighted have resulted in the determination of the 3D structures, dynamical properties and interaction surfaces for membrane-associated proteins using advanced isotope labelling strategies, solubilisation systems and NMR experiments designed for very high field magnets. Solid state NMR offers further insights into the structure and multimeric assembly of membrane proteins in lipid bilayers, as well as into interactions with ligands and targets. Remaining challenges for wider application of NMR to membrane structural biology include the need for overexpression and purification systems for the production of isotope-labelled proteins with fragile folds, and the availability of only a few expensive perdeuterated detergents.Step changes that may transform the field include polymers, such as styrene maleic acid, which obviate the need for detergent altogether, and allow direct high yield purification from cells or membranes. Broader demand for NMR may be facilitated by MODA software, which instantly predicts membrane interactive residues that can subsequently be validated by NMR. In addition, recent developments in dynamic nuclear polarization NMR instrumentation offer a remarkable sensitivity enhancement from low molarity samples and cell surfaces. These advances illustrate the current

  11. Surface recognition elements of membrane protein oligomerization.

    PubMed

    Rath, Arianna; Deber, Charles M

    2008-02-15

    Although certain membrane proteins are functional as monomeric polypeptides, others must assemble into oligomers to carry out their biological roles. High-resolution membrane protein structures provide a valuable resource for examining the sequence features that facilitate-or preclude-assembly of membrane protein monomers into multimeric structures. Here we have utilized a data set of 28 high-resolution alpha-helical membrane protein structures comprising 32 nonredundant polypeptides to address this issue. The lipid-exposed surfaces of membrane proteins that have reached their fully assembled and functional biological units have been compared with those of the individual subunits that build quaternary structures. Though the overall amino acid composition of each set of surfaces is similar, a key distinction-the distribution of small-xxx-small motifs-delineates subunits from membrane proteins that have reached a functioning oligomeric state. Quaternary structure formation may therefore be dictated by small-xxx-small motifs that are not satisfied by intrachain contacts. PMID:17729275

  12. Protein Stains to Detect Antigen on Membranes.

    PubMed

    Dsouza, Anil; Scofield, R Hal

    2015-01-01

    Western blotting (protein blotting/electroblotting) is the gold standard in the analysis of complex protein mixtures. Electroblotting drives protein molecules from a polyacrylamide (or less commonly, of an agarose) gel to the surface of a binding membrane, thereby facilitating an increased availability of the sites with affinity for both general and specific protein reagents. The analysis of these complex protein mixtures is achieved by the detection of specific protein bands on a membrane, which in turn is made possible by the visualization of protein bands either by chemical staining or by reaction with an antibody of a conjugated ligand. Chemical methods employ staining with organic dyes, metal chelates, autoradiography, fluorescent dyes, complexing with silver, or prelabeling with fluorophores. All of these methods have differing sensitivities and quantitative determinations vary significantly. This review will describe the various protein staining methods applied to membranes after western blotting. "Detection" precedes and is a prerequisite to obtaining qualitative and quantitative data on the proteins in a sample, as much as to comparing the protein composition of different samples. "Detection" is often synonymous to staining, i.e., the reversible or irreversible binding by the proteins of a colored organic or inorganic chemical. PMID:26139252

  13. Biophysical Characterization of Membrane Proteins in Nanodiscs

    PubMed Central

    Inagaki, Sayaka; Ghirlando, Rodolfo; Grisshammer, Reinhard

    2012-01-01

    Nanodiscs are self-assembled discoidal phospholipid bilayers surrounded and stabilized by membrane scaffold proteins (MSP), that have become a powerful and promising tool for the study of membrane proteins. Even though their reconstitution is highly regulated by the type of MSP and phospholipid input, a biophysical characterization leading to the determination of the stoichiometry of MSP, lipid and membrane protein is essential. This is important for biological studies, as the oligomeric state of membrane proteins often correlates with their functional activity. Typically combinations of several methods are applied using, for example, modified samples that incorporate fluorescent labels, along with procedures that result in nanodisc disassembly and lipid dissolution. To obtain a comprehensive understanding of the native properties of nanodiscs, modification-free analysis methods are required. In this work we provide a strategy, using a combination of dynamic light scattering and analytical ultracentrifugation, for the biophysical characterization of unmodified nanodiscs. In this manner we characterize the nanodisc preparation in terms of its overall polydispersity and characterize the hydrodynamically resolved nanodisc of interest in terms of its sedimentation coefficient, Stokes’ radius and overall protein and lipid stoichiometry. Functional and biological applications are also discussed for the study of the membrane protein embedded in nanodiscs under defined experimental conditions. PMID:23219517

  14. Intrinsically disordered proteins drive membrane curvature

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Busch, David J.; Houser, Justin R.; Hayden, Carl C.; Sherman, Michael B.; Lafer, Eileen M.; Stachowiak, Jeanne C.

    2015-07-01

    Assembly of highly curved membrane structures is essential to cellular physiology. The prevailing view has been that proteins with curvature-promoting structural motifs, such as wedge-like amphipathic helices and crescent-shaped BAR domains, are required for bending membranes. Here we report that intrinsically disordered domains of the endocytic adaptor proteins, Epsin1 and AP180 are highly potent drivers of membrane curvature. This result is unexpected since intrinsically disordered domains lack a well-defined three-dimensional structure. However, in vitro measurements of membrane curvature and protein diffusivity demonstrate that the large hydrodynamic radii of these domains generate steric pressure that drives membrane bending. When disordered adaptor domains are expressed as transmembrane cargo in mammalian cells, they are excluded from clathrin-coated pits. We propose that a balance of steric pressure on the two surfaces of the membrane drives this exclusion. These results provide quantitative evidence for the influence of steric pressure on the content and assembly of curved cellular membrane structures.

  15. Intrinsically disordered proteins drive membrane curvature

    PubMed Central

    Busch, David J.; Houser, Justin R.; Hayden, Carl C.; Sherman, Michael B.; Lafer, Eileen M.; Stachowiak, Jeanne C.

    2015-01-01

    Assembly of highly curved membrane structures is essential to cellular physiology. The prevailing view has been that proteins with curvature-promoting structural motifs, such as wedge-like amphipathic helices and crescent-shaped BAR domains, are required for bending membranes. Here we report that intrinsically disordered domains of the endocytic adaptor proteins, Epsin1 and AP180 are highly potent drivers of membrane curvature. This result is unexpected since intrinsically disordered domains lack a well-defined three-dimensional structure. However, in vitro measurements of membrane curvature and protein diffusivity demonstrate that the large hydrodynamic radii of these domains generate steric pressure that drives membrane bending. When disordered adaptor domains are expressed as transmembrane cargo in mammalian cells, they are excluded from clathrin-coated pits. We propose that a balance of steric pressure on the two surfaces of the membrane drives this exclusion. These results provide quantitative evidence for the influence of steric pressure on the content and assembly of curved cellular membrane structures. PMID:26204806

  16. Class III viral membrane fusion proteins

    PubMed Central

    Backovic, Marija

    2010-01-01

    SUMMARY Accumulating structural studies of viral fusion glycoproteins have revealed unanticipated structural relationships between unrelated virus families and allowed the grouping of these membrane fusogens into three distinct classes. Here we review the newly identified group of class III viral fusion proteins, whose members include fusion proteins from rhabdoviruses, herpesviruses and baculoviruses. While clearly related in structure, the class III viral fusion proteins exhibit distinct structural features in their architectures as well as in their membrane-interacting fusion loops, which are likely related to their virus-specific differences in cellular entry. Further study of the similarities and differences in the class III viral fusion glycoproteins may provide greater insights into protein:membrane interactions that are key to promoting efficient bilayer fusion during virus entry. PMID:19356922

  17. Protein transfer to membranes upon shape deformation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sagis, L. M. C.; Bijl, E.; Antono, L.; de Ruijter, N. C. A.; van Valenberg, H.

    2013-05-01

    Red blood cells, milk fat droplets, or liposomes all have interfaces consisting of lipid membranes. These particles show significant shape deformations as a result of flow. Here we show that these shape deformations can induce adsorption of proteins to the membrane. Red blood cell deformability is an important factor in several diseases involving obstructions of the microcirculatory system, and deformation induced protein adsorption will alter the rigidity of their membranes. Deformation induced protein transfer will also affect adsorption of cells onto implant surfaces, and the performance of liposome based controlled release systems. Quantitative models describing this phenomenon in biomaterials do not exist. Using a simple quantitative model, we provide new insight in this phenomenon. We present data that show convincingly that for cells or droplets with diameters upwards of a few micrometers, shape deformations induce adsorption of proteins at their interface even at moderate flow rates.

  18. Helix insertion into bilayers and the evolution of membrane proteins

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Polytopic α-helical membrane proteins cannot spontaneously insert into lipid bilayers without assistance from polytopic α-helical membrane proteins that already reside in the membrane. This raises the question of how these proteins evolved. Our current knowledge of the insertion of α-helices into natural and model membranes is reviewed with the goal of gaining insight into the evolution of membrane proteins. Topics include: translocon-dependent membrane protein insertion, antibiotic peptides and proteins, in vitro insertion of membrane proteins, chaperone-mediated insertion of transmembrane helices, and C-terminal tail-anchored (TA) proteins. Analysis of the E. coli genome reveals several predicted C-terminal TA proteins that may be descendents of proteins involved in pre-cellular membrane protein insertion. Mechanisms of pre-translocon polytopic α-helical membrane protein insertion are discussed. PMID:20039094

  19. Protein separation using an electrically tunable membrane

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jou, Ining; Melnikov, Dmitriy; Gracheva, Maria

    Separation of small proteins by charge with a solid-state porous membrane requires control over the protein's movement. Semiconductor membrane has this ability due to the electrically tunable electric potential profile inside the nanopore. In this work we investigate the possibility to separate the solution of two similar sized proteins by charge. As an example, we consider two small globular proteins abundant in humans: insulin (negatively charged) and ubiquitin (neutral). We find that the localized electric field inside the pore either attracts or repels the charged protein to or from the pore wall which affects the delay time before a successful translocation of the protein through the nanopore. However, the motion of the uncharged ubiquitin is unaffected. The difference in the delay time (and hence the separation) can be further increased by the application of the electrolyte bias which induces an electroosmotic flow in the pore. NSF DMR and CBET Grant No. 1352218.

  20. Crystallization of Membrane Proteins by Vapor Diffusion

    PubMed Central

    Delmar, Jared A.; Bolla, Jani Reddy; Su, Chih-Chia; Yu, Edward W.

    2016-01-01

    X-ray crystallography remains the most robust method to determine protein structure at the atomic level. However, the bottlenecks of protein expression and purification often discourage further study. In this chapter, we address the most common problems encountered at these stages. Based on our experiences in expressing and purifying antimicrobial efflux proteins, we explain how a pure and homogenous protein sample can be successfully crystallized by the vapor diffusion method. We present our current protocols and methodologies for this technique. Case studies show step-by-step how we have overcome problems related to expression and diffraction, eventually producing high quality membrane protein crystals for structural determinations. It is our hope that a rational approach can be made of the often anecdotal process of membrane protein crystallization. PMID:25950974

  1. Membrane protein structure from rotational diffusion☆

    PubMed Central

    Das, Bibhuti B.; Park, Sang Ho; Opella, Stanley J.

    2014-01-01

    The motional averaging of powder pattern line shapes is one of the most fundamental aspects of sold-state NMR. Since membrane proteins in liquid crystalline phospholipid bilayers undergo fast rotational diffusion, all of the signals reflect the angles of the principal axes of their dipole–dipole and chemical shift tensors with respect to the axis defined by the bilayer normal. The frequency span and sign of the axially symmetric powder patterns that result from motional averaging about a common axis provide sufficient structural restraints for the calculation of the three-dimensional structure of a membrane protein in a phospholipid bilayer environment. The method is referred to as rotationally aligned (RA) solid-state NMR and demonstrated with results on full-length, unmodified membrane proteins with one, two, and seven trans-membrane helices. RA solid-state NMR is complementary to other solid-state NMR methods, in particular oriented sample (OS) solid-state NMR of stationary, aligned samples. Structural distortions of membrane proteins from the truncations of terminal residues and other sequence modifications, and the use of detergent micelles instead of phospholipid bilayers have also been demonstrated. Thus, it is highly advantageous to determine the structures of unmodified membrane proteins in liquid crystalline phospholipid bilayers under physiological conditions. RA solid-state NMR provides a general method for obtaining accurate and precise structures of membrane proteins under near-native conditions. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: NMR Spectroscopy for Atomistic Views of Biomembranes and Cell Surfaces. PMID:24747039

  2. Breaking the barriers in membrane protein crystallography.

    PubMed

    Kang, Hae Joo; Lee, Chiara; Drew, David

    2013-03-01

    As we appreciate the importance of stabilising membrane proteins, the barriers towards their structure determination are being broken down. This change in mindset comes hand-in-hand with more effort placed on developing methods focused at screening for membrane proteins which are naturally stable in detergent solution or improving those that are not so. In practice, however, it is not easy to decide the best strategy to monitor and improve detergent stability, requiring a decision-making process that can be even more difficult for those new to the field. In this review we outline the importance of membrane protein stability with discussions of the stabilisation strategies applied in context with the use of crystallisation scaffolds and the different types of crystallisation methods themselves. Where possible we also highlight areas that we think could push this field forward with emerging technologies, such as X-ray free electron lasers (X-feL), which could have a big impact on the membrane protein structural biology community. We hope this review will serve as a useful guide for those striving to solve structures of both pro- and eukaryotic membrane proteins. PMID:23291355

  3. Curvature-mediated interactions between membrane proteins.

    PubMed Central

    Kim, K S; Neu, J; Oster, G

    1998-01-01

    Membrane proteins can deform the lipid bilayer in which they are embedded. If the bilayer is treated as an elastic medium, then these deformations will generate elastic interactions between the proteins. The interaction between a single pair is repulsive. However, for three or more proteins, we show that there are nonpairwise forces whose magnitude is similar to the pairwise forces. When there are five or more proteins, we show that the nonpairwise forces permit the existence of stable protein aggregates, despite their pairwise repulsions. PMID:9788923

  4. Identifying the hub proteins from complicated membrane protein network systems.

    PubMed

    Shen, Yi-Zhen; Ding, Yong-Sheng; Gu, Quan; Chou, Kuo-Chen

    2010-05-01

    The so-called "hub proteins" are those proteins in a protein-protein interaction network system that have remarkably higher interaction relations (or degrees) than the others. Therefore, the information of hub proteins can provide very useful insights for selecting or prioritizing targets during drug development. In this paper, by combining the multi-agent-based method with the graphical spectrum analysis and immune-genetic algorithm, a novel simulator for identifying the hub proteins from membrane protein interaction networks is proposed. As a demonstration of using the simulator, two hub membrane proteins, YPL227C and YIL147C, were identified from a complicated network system consisting of 1500 membrane proteins. Meanwhile, along with the two identified hub proteins, their molecular functions, biological processes, and cellular components were also revealed. It is anticipated that the hub-protein-simulator may become a very useful tool for system biology and drug development, particularly in deciphering unknown protein functions, determining protein complexes, and in identifying the key targets from a complicated disease system. PMID:20507268

  5. Transmembrane protein sorting driven by membrane curvature

    PubMed Central

    Strahl, H.; Ronneau, S.; González, B. Solana; Klutsch, D.; Schaffner-Barbero, C.; Hamoen, L. W.

    2015-01-01

    The intricate structure of prokaryotic and eukaryotic cells depends on the ability to target proteins to specific cellular locations. In most cases, we have a poor understanding of the underlying mechanisms. A typical example is the assembly of bacterial chemoreceptors at cell poles. Here we show that the classical chemoreceptor TlpA of Bacillus subtilis does not localize according to the consensus stochastic nucleation mechanism but accumulates at strongly curved membrane areas generated during cell division. This preference was confirmed by accumulation at non-septal curved membranes. Localization appears to be an intrinsic property of the protein complex and does not rely on chemoreceptor clustering, as was previously shown for Escherichia coli. By constructing specific amino-acid substitutions, we demonstrate that the preference for strongly curved membranes arises from the curved shape of chemoreceptor trimer of dimers. These findings demonstrate that the intrinsic shape of transmembrane proteins can determine their cellular localization. PMID:26522943

  6. Model-building codes for membrane proteins.

    SciTech Connect

    Shirley, David Noyes; Hunt, Thomas W.; Brown, W. Michael; Schoeniger, Joseph S.; Slepoy, Alexander; Sale, Kenneth L.; Young, Malin M.; Faulon, Jean-Loup Michel; Gray, Genetha Anne

    2005-01-01

    We have developed a novel approach to modeling the transmembrane spanning helical bundles of integral membrane proteins using only a sparse set of distance constraints, such as those derived from MS3-D, dipolar-EPR and FRET experiments. Algorithms have been written for searching the conformational space of membrane protein folds matching the set of distance constraints, which provides initial structures for local conformational searches. Local conformation search is achieved by optimizing these candidates against a custom penalty function that incorporates both measures derived from statistical analysis of solved membrane protein structures and distance constraints obtained from experiments. This results in refined helical bundles to which the interhelical loops and amino acid side-chains are added. Using a set of only 27 distance constraints extracted from the literature, our methods successfully recover the structure of dark-adapted rhodopsin to within 3.2 {angstrom} of the crystal structure.

  7. Transmembrane protein sorting driven by membrane curvature

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Strahl, H.; Ronneau, S.; González, B. Solana; Klutsch, D.; Schaffner-Barbero, C.; Hamoen, L. W.

    2015-11-01

    The intricate structure of prokaryotic and eukaryotic cells depends on the ability to target proteins to specific cellular locations. In most cases, we have a poor understanding of the underlying mechanisms. A typical example is the assembly of bacterial chemoreceptors at cell poles. Here we show that the classical chemoreceptor TlpA of Bacillus subtilis does not localize according to the consensus stochastic nucleation mechanism but accumulates at strongly curved membrane areas generated during cell division. This preference was confirmed by accumulation at non-septal curved membranes. Localization appears to be an intrinsic property of the protein complex and does not rely on chemoreceptor clustering, as was previously shown for Escherichia coli. By constructing specific amino-acid substitutions, we demonstrate that the preference for strongly curved membranes arises from the curved shape of chemoreceptor trimer of dimers. These findings demonstrate that the intrinsic shape of transmembrane proteins can determine their cellular localization.

  8. Atomic-level analysis of membrane-protein structure.

    PubMed

    Hendrickson, Wayne A

    2016-06-01

    Membrane proteins are substantially more challenging than natively soluble proteins as subjects for structural analysis. Thus, membrane proteins are greatly underrepresented in structural databases. Recently, focused consortium efforts and advances in methodology for protein production, crystallographic analysis and cryo-EM analysis have accelerated the pace of atomic-level structure determination of membrane proteins. PMID:27273628

  9. Protein permeation through an electrically tunable membrane.

    PubMed

    Jou, Ining A; Melnikov, Dmitriy V; Gracheva, Maria E

    2016-05-20

    Protein filtration is important in many fields of science and technology such as medicine, biology, chemistry, and engineering. Recently, protein separation and filtering with nanoporous membranes has attracted interest due to the possibility of fast separation and high throughput volume. This, however, requires understanding of the protein's dynamics inside and in the vicinity of the nanopore. In this work, we utilize a Brownian dynamics approach to study the motion of the model protein insulin in the membrane-electrolyte electrostatic potential. We compare the results of the atomic model of the protein with the results of a coarse-grained and a single-bead model, and find that the coarse-grained representation of protein strikes the best balance between the accuracy of the results and the computational effort required. Contrary to common belief, we find that to adequately describe the protein, a single-bead model cannot be utilized without a significant effort to tabulate the simulation parameters. Similar to results for nanoparticle dynamics, our findings also indicate that the electric field and the electro-osmotic flow due to the applied membrane and electrolyte biases affect the capture and translocation of the biomolecule by either attracting or repelling it to or from the nanopore. Our computational model can also be applied to other types of proteins and separation conditions. PMID:27044064

  10. Outer membrane proteins of Methylococcus capsulatus (Bath).

    PubMed

    Fjellbirkeland, A; Kleivdal, H; Joergensen, C; Thestrup, H; Jensen, H B

    1997-08-01

    Membranes obtained from whole-cell lysates of Methylococcus capsulatus (Bath) were separated by Triton X-100 extraction. The resulting insoluble fraction was enriched in outer membranes as assessed by electron microscopy and by the content of beta-hydroxy palmitic acid and particulate methane monooxygenase. Major proteins with molecular masses of approximately 27, 40, 46, 59, and 66 kDa were detected by SDS-PAGE of the Triton-X-100-insoluble membranes. MopA, MopB, MopC, MopD, and MopE (Methylococcus outer membrane protein) are proposed to designate these proteins. Several of the Mop proteins exhibited heat-modifiable properties in SDS-PAGE and were influenced by the presence of 2-mercaptoethanol in the sample buffer. The 46- and 59-kDa bands migrated as a single high-molecular-mass 95-kDa oligomer under mild denaturing conditions. When reconstituted into black lipid membranes, this oligomer was shown to serve as a channel with an estimated single-channel conductance of 1.4 nS in 1 M KCl. PMID:9238104

  11. Major intrinsic proteins in biomimetic membranes.

    PubMed

    Nielsen, Claus Hélix

    2010-01-01

    Biological membranes define the structural and functional boundaries in living cells and their organelles. The integrity of the cell depends on its ability to separate inside from outside and yet at the same time allow massive transport of matter in and out the cell. Nature has elegantly met this challenge by developing membranes in the form of lipid bilayers in which specialized transport proteins are incorporated. This raises the question: is it possible to mimic biological membranes and create a membrane based sensor and/or separation device? In the development of a biomimetic sensor/separation technology, a unique class of membrane transport proteins is especially interesting-the major intrinsic proteins (MIPs). Generally, MIPs conduct water molecules and selected solutes in and out of the cell while preventing the passage of other solutes, a property critical for the conservation of the cells internal pH and salt concentration. Also known as water channels or aquaporins they are highly efficient membrane pore proteins some of which are capable of transporting water at very high rates up to 10(9) molecules per second. Some MIPs transport other small, uncharged solutes, such as glycerol and other permeants such as carbon dioxide, nitric oxide, ammonia, hydrogen peroxide and the metalloids antimonite, arsenite, silicic and boric acid depending on the effective restriction mechanism of the protein. The flux properties of MIPs thus lead to the question ifMIPs can be used in separation devices or as sensor devices based on, e.g., the selective permeation of metalloids. In principle a MIP based membrane sensor/separation device requires the supporting biomimetic matrix to be virtually impermeable to anything but water or the solute in question. In practice, however, a biomimetic support matrix will generally have finite permeabilities to both electrolytes and non-electrolytes. The feasibility of a biomimetic MIP device thus depends on the relative transport

  12. A Survey of Membrane Proteins in Human Serum

    PubMed Central

    Dung, Nguyen Tien; Van Chi, Phan

    2012-01-01

    Serum and membrane proteins are two of the most attractive targets for proteomic analysis. Previous membrane protein studies tend to focus on tissue sample, while membrane protein studies in serum are still limited. In this study, an analysis of membrane proteins in normal human serum was carried out. Nano-liquid chromatography-electrospray ionization mass spectrometry (NanoLC-ESI-MS/MS) and bioinformatics tools were used to identify membrane proteins. Two hundred and seventeen membrane proteins were detected in the human serum, of which 129 membrane proteins have at least one transmembrane domain (TMD). Further characterizations of identified membrane proteins including their subcellular distributions, molecular weights, post translational modifications, transmembrane domains and average of hydrophobicity, were also implemented. Our results showed the potential of membrane proteins in serum for diagnosis and treatment of diseases. PMID:25288886

  13. Membrane Protein Solubilization and Composition of Protein Detergent Complexes.

    PubMed

    Duquesne, Katia; Prima, Valérie; Sturgis, James N

    2016-01-01

    Membrane proteins are typically expressed in heterologous systems with a view to in vitro characterization. A critical step in the preparation of membrane proteins after expression in any system is the solubilization of the protein in aqueous solution, typically using detergents and lipids, to obtain the protein in a form suitable for purification, structural or functional analysis. This process is particularly difficult as the objective is to prepare the protein in an unnatural environment, a protein detergent complex, separating it from its natural lipid partners while causing the minimum destabilization or modification of the structure. Although the process is difficult, and relatively hard to master, an increasing number of membrane proteins have been successfully isolated after expression in a wide variety of systems. In this chapter we give a general protocol for preparing protein detergent complexes that is aimed at guiding the reader through the different critical steps. In the second part of the chapter we illustrate how to analyze the composition of protein detergent complexes; this analysis is important as it has been found that compositional variation often causes irreproducible results. PMID:27485340

  14. Self diffusion of interacting membrane proteins.

    PubMed Central

    Abney, J R; Scalettar, B A; Owicki, J C

    1989-01-01

    A two-dimensional version of the generalized Smoluchowski equation is used to analyze the time (or distance) dependent self diffusion of interacting membrane proteins in concentrated membrane systems. This equation provides a well established starting point for descriptions of the diffusion of particles that interact through both direct and hydrodynamic forces; in this initial work only the effects of direct interactions are explicitly considered. Data describing diffusion in the presence of hard-core repulsions, soft repulsions, and soft repulsions with weak attractions are presented. The effect that interactions have on the self-diffusion coefficient of a real protein molecule from mouse liver gap junctions is also calculated. The results indicate that self diffusion is always inhibited by direct interactions; this observation is interpreted in terms of the caging that will exist at finite protein concentration. It is also noted that, over small distance scales, the diffusion coefficient is determined entirely by the very strong Brownian forces; therefore, as a function of displacement the self-diffusion coefficient decays (rapidly) from its value at infinite dilution to its steady-state interaction-averaged value. The steady-state self-diffusion coefficient describes motion over distance scales that range from approximately 10 nm to cellular dimensions and is the quantity measured in fluorescence recovery after photobleaching experiments. The short-ranged behavior of the diffusion coefficient is important on the interparticle-distance scale and may therefore influence the rate at which nearest-neighbor collisional processes take place. The hard-disk theoretical results presented here are in excellent agreement with lattice Monte-Carlo results obtained by other workers. The concentration dependence of experimentally measured diffusion coefficients of antibody-hapten complexes bound to the membrane surface is consistent with that predicted by the theory. The

  15. MemProtMD: Automated Insertion of Membrane Protein Structures into Explicit Lipid Membranes

    PubMed Central

    Stansfeld, Phillip J.; Goose, Joseph E.; Caffrey, Martin; Carpenter, Elisabeth P.; Parker, Joanne L.; Newstead, Simon; Sansom, Mark S.P.

    2015-01-01

    Summary There has been exponential growth in the number of membrane protein structures determined. Nevertheless, these structures are usually resolved in the absence of their lipid environment. Coarse-grained molecular dynamics (CGMD) simulations enable insertion of membrane proteins into explicit models of lipid bilayers. We have automated the CGMD methodology, enabling membrane protein structures to be identified upon their release into the PDB and embedded into a membrane. The simulations are analyzed for protein-lipid interactions, identifying lipid binding sites, and revealing local bilayer deformations plus molecular access pathways within the membrane. The coarse-grained models of membrane protein/bilayer complexes are transformed to atomistic resolution for further analysis and simulation. Using this automated simulation pipeline, we have analyzed a number of recently determined membrane protein structures to predict their locations within a membrane, their lipid/protein interactions, and the functional implications of an enhanced understanding of the local membrane environment of each protein. PMID:26073602

  16. Engineering Lipid Bilayer Membranes for Protein Studies

    PubMed Central

    Khan, Muhammad Shuja; Dosoky, Noura Sayed; Williams, John Dalton

    2013-01-01

    Lipid membranes regulate the flow of nutrients and communication signaling between cells and protect the sub-cellular structures. Recent attempts to fabricate artificial systems using nanostructures that mimic the physiological properties of natural lipid bilayer membranes (LBM) fused with transmembrane proteins have helped demonstrate the importance of temperature, pH, ionic strength, adsorption behavior, conformational reorientation and surface density in cellular membranes which all affect the incorporation of proteins on solid surfaces. Much of this work is performed on artificial templates made of polymer sponges or porous materials based on alumina, mica, and porous silicon (PSi) surfaces. For example, porous silicon materials have high biocompatibility, biodegradability, and photoluminescence, which allow them to be used both as a support structure for lipid bilayers or a template to measure the electrochemical functionality of living cells grown over the surface as in vivo. The variety of these media, coupled with the complex physiological conditions present in living systems, warrant a summary and prospectus detailing which artificial systems provide the most promise for different biological conditions. This study summarizes the use of electrochemical impedance spectroscopy (EIS) data on artificial biological membranes that are closely matched with previously published biological systems using both black lipid membrane and patch clamp techniques. PMID:24185908

  17. When physics takes over: BAR proteins and membrane curvature

    PubMed Central

    Simunovic, Mijo; Voth, Gregory A.; Callan-Jones, Andrew; Bassereau, Patricia

    2016-01-01

    Cell membranes become highly curved during membrane trafficking, cytokinesis, infection, immune response or cell motion. Bin/amphiphysin/Rvs (BAR) domain proteins with their intrinsically curved and anisotropic shape are involved in many of these processes, but with a large spectrum of modes of action. In vitro experiments and multiscale computer simulations have contributed in identifying a minimal set of physical parameters, namely protein density on the membrane, membrane tension, and membrane shape, that control how bound BAR domain proteins behave on the membrane. In this review, we summarize the multifaceted coupling of BAR proteins to membrane mechanics and propose a simple phase diagram that recapitulates the effects of these parameters. PMID:26519988

  18. SNARE proteins and ‘membrane rafts’

    PubMed Central

    Lang, Thorsten

    2007-01-01

    The original ‘lipid raft’ hypothesis proposed that lipid-platforms/rafts form in the exoplasmic plasmalemmal leaflet by tight clustering of sphingolipids and cholesterol. Their physical state, presumably similar to liquid-ordered phases in model membranes, would confer detergent resistance to rafts and enriched proteins therein. Based on this concept, detergent resistant membranes (DRMs) from solubilized cells were considered to reflect pre-existing ‘lipid rafts’ in live cells. To date, more than 200 proteins were found in DRMs including also members of the SNARE superfamily, which are small membrane proteins involved in intracellular fusion steps. Their raft association indicates that they are not uniformly distributed, and, indeed, microscopic studies revealed that SNAREs concentrate in submicrometre-sized, cholesterol-dependent clusters at which vesicles fuse. However, the idea that SNARE clusters are ‘lipid rafts’ was challenged, as they do not colocalize with raft markers, and SNAREs are excluded from liquid-ordered phases in model membranes. Independent from this disagreement, in recent years the solubilization criterion has been criticized for several reasons, calling for a more exact definition of rafts. At a recent consensus on a revised raft model, the term ‘lipid rafts’ was replaced by ‘membrane rafts’ that were defined as ‘small (10–200 nm), heterogeneous, highly dynamic, sterol- and sphingolipid-enriched domains that compartmentalize cellular processes’. As a result, after dismissing the terms ‘detergent resistant’ and ‘liquid-ordered’, it now appears that SNARE clusters are bona fide ‘membrane rafts’. PMID:17478530

  19. Membrane protein structure determination by electron crystallography

    PubMed Central

    Ubarretxena-Belandia, Iban; Stokes, David L.

    2012-01-01

    During the past year, electron crystallography of membrane proteins has provided structural insights into the mechanism of several different transporters and into their interactions with lipid molecules within the bilayer. From a technical perspective there have been important advances in high-throughput screening of crystallization trials and in automated imaging of membrane crystals with the electron microscope. There have also been key developments in software, and in molecular replacement and phase extension methods designed to facilitate the process of structure determination. PMID:22572457

  20. Protein permeation through an electrically tunable membrane

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jou, Ining A.; Melnikov, Dmitriy V.; Gracheva, Maria E.

    2016-05-01

    Protein filtration is important in many fields of science and technology such as medicine, biology, chemistry, and engineering. Recently, protein separation and filtering with nanoporous membranes has attracted interest due to the possibility of fast separation and high throughput volume. This, however, requires understanding of the protein’s dynamics inside and in the vicinity of the nanopore. In this work, we utilize a Brownian dynamics approach to study the motion of the model protein insulin in the membrane–electrolyte electrostatic potential. We compare the results of the atomic model of the protein with the results of a coarse-grained and a single-bead model, and find that the coarse-grained representation of protein strikes the best balance between the accuracy of the results and the computational effort required. Contrary to common belief, we find that to adequately describe the protein, a single-bead model cannot be utilized without a significant effort to tabulate the simulation parameters. Similar to results for nanoparticle dynamics, our findings also indicate that the electric field and the electro-osmotic flow due to the applied membrane and electrolyte biases affect the capture and translocation of the biomolecule by either attracting or repelling it to or from the nanopore. Our computational model can also be applied to other types of proteins and separation conditions.

  1. Identification of extracellularly phosphorylated membrane proteins.

    PubMed

    Burghoff, Sandra; Willberg, Wibke; Schrader, Jürgen

    2015-10-01

    Ecto-protein kinases phosphorylate extracellular membrane proteins and exhibit similarities to casein kinases and protein kinases A and C. However, the identification of their protein substrates still remains a challenge because a clear separation from intracellular phosphoproteins is difficult. Here, we describe a straightforward method for the identification of extracellularly phosphorylated membrane proteins in human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVECs) and K562 cells which used the protease bromelain to selectively remove ectoproteins from intact cells and combined this with the subsequent analysis using IMAC and LC-MS/MS. A "false-positive" strategy in which cells without protease treatment served as controls was applied. Using this approach we identified novel phosphorylation sites on five ectophosphoproteins (NOTCH1, otopetrin 1, regulator of G-protein signalling 13 (RGS13), protein tyrosine phosphatase receptor type D isoform 3 (PTPRD), usherin isoform B (USH2A)). Use of bromelain appears to be a reliable technique for the further identification of phosphorylated surface-exposed peptides when extracellular adenosine-5'-triphosphate is elevated during purinergic signalling. PMID:26152529

  2. Golgi protein FAPP2 tubulates membranes

    PubMed Central

    Cao, Xinwang; Coskun, Ünal; Rössle, Manfred; Buschhorn, Sabine B.; Grzybek, Michal; Dafforn, Timothy R.; Lenoir, Marc; Overduin, Michael; Simons, Kai

    2009-01-01

    The Golgi-associated four-phosphate adaptor protein 2 (FAPP2) has been shown to possess transfer activity for glucosylceramide both in vitro and in cells. We have previously shown that FAPP2 is involved in apical transport from the Golgi complex in epithelial MDCK cells. In this paper we assign an unknown activity for the protein as well as providing structural insight into protein assembly and a low-resolution envelope structure. By applying analytical ultracentrifugation and small-angle x-ray scattering, we show that FAPP2 is a dimeric protein in solution, having a curved shape 30 nm in length. The purified FAPP2 protein has the capability to form tubules from membrane sheets in vitro. This activity is dependent on the phosphoinositide-binding activity of the PH domain of FAPP2. These data suggest that FAPP2 functions directly in the formation of apical carriers in the trans-Golgi network. PMID:19940249

  3. Exploiting Microbeams for Membrane Protein Structure Determination.

    PubMed

    Warren, Anna J; Axford, Danny; Paterson, Neil G; Owen, Robin L

    2016-01-01

    A reproducible, and sample independent means of predictably obtaining large, well-ordered crystals has proven elusive in macromolecular crystallography. In the structure determination pipeline, crystallisation often proves to be a rate-limiting step, and the process of obtaining even small or badly ordered crystals can prove time-consuming and laborious. This is particularly true in the field of membrane protein crystallography and this is reflected in the limited number of unique membrane protein structures deposited in the protein data bank (less than 650 by June 2016 - http://blanco.biomol.uci.edu/mpstruc ). Over recent years the requirement for, and time and cost associated with obtaining, large crystals has been partially alleviated through the development of beamline instrumentation allowing data collection, and structure solution, from ever-smaller crystals. Advances in several areas have led to a step change in what might be considered achievable during a synchrotron trip over the last decade. This chapter will briefly review the current status of the field, the tools available to ease data collection and processing, and give some examples of exploitation of these for membrane protein microfocus macromolecular crystallography. PMID:27553238

  4. Outer membrane proteins of pathogenic spirochetes

    PubMed Central

    Cullen, Paul A.; Haake, David A.; Adler, Ben

    2009-01-01

    Pathogenic spirochetes are the causative agents of several important diseases including syphilis, Lyme disease, leptospirosis, swine dysentery, periodontal disease and some forms of relapsing fever. Spirochetal bacteria possess two membranes and the proteins present in the outer membrane are at the site of interaction with host tissue and the immune system. This review describes the current knowledge in the field of spirochetal outer membrane protein (OMP) biology. What is known concerning biogenesis and structure of OMPs, with particular regard to the atypical signal peptide cleavage sites observed amongst the spirochetes, is discussed. We examine the functions that have been determined for several spirochetal OMPs including those that have been demonstrated to function as adhesins, porins or to have roles in complement resistance. A detailed description of the role of spirochetal OMPs in immunity, including those that stimulate protective immunity or that are involved in antigenic variation, is given. A final section is included which covers experimental considerations in spirochetal outer membrane biology. This section covers contentious issues concerning cellular localization of putative OMPs, including determination of surface exposure. A more detailed knowledge of spirochetal OMP biology will hopefully lead to the design of new vaccines and a better understanding of spirochetal pathogenesis. PMID:15449605

  5. Serial Millisecond Crystallography of Membrane Proteins.

    PubMed

    Jaeger, Kathrin; Dworkowski, Florian; Nogly, Przemyslaw; Milne, Christopher; Wang, Meitian; Standfuss, Joerg

    2016-01-01

    Serial femtosecond crystallography (SFX) at X-ray free-electron lasers (XFELs) is a powerful method to determine high-resolution structures of pharmaceutically relevant membrane proteins. Recently, the technology has been adapted to carry out serial millisecond crystallography (SMX) at synchrotron sources, where beamtime is more abundant. In an injector-based approach, crystals grown in lipidic cubic phase (LCP) or embedded in viscous medium are delivered directly into the unattenuated beam of a microfocus beamline. Pilot experiments show the application of microjet-based SMX for solving the structure of a membrane protein and compatibility of the method with de novo phasing. Planned synchrotron upgrades, faster detectors and software developments will go hand-in-hand with developments at free-electron lasers to provide a powerful methodology for solving structures from microcrystals at room temperature, ligand screening or crystal optimization for time-resolved studies with minimal or no radiation damage. PMID:27553240

  6. Binding contribution between synaptic vesicle membrane and plasma membrane proteins in neurons: an AFM study.

    PubMed

    Sritharan, K C; Quinn, A S; Taatjes, D J; Jena, B P

    1998-01-01

    The final step in the exocytotic process is the docking and fusion of membrane-bound secretory vesicles at the cell plasma membrane. This docking and fusion is brought about by several participating vesicle membrane, plasma membrane and soluble cytosolic proteins. A clear understanding of the interactions between these participating proteins giving rise to vesicle docking and fusion is essential. In this study, the binding force profiles between synaptic vesicle membrane and plasma membrane proteins have been examined for the first time using the atomic force microscope. Binding force contributions of a synaptic vesicle membrane protein VAMP1, and the plasma membrane proteins SNAP-25 and syntaxin, are also implicated from these studies. Our study suggests that these three proteins are the major, if not the only contributors to the interactive binding force that exist between the two membranes. PMID:10452835

  7. Theoretical analysis of protein organization in lipid membranes.

    PubMed

    Gil, T; Ipsen, J H; Mouritsen, O G; Sabra, M C; Sperotto, M M; Zuckermann, M J

    1998-11-10

    The fundamental physical principles of the lateral organization of trans-membrane proteins and peptides as well as peripheral membrane proteins and enzymes are considered from the point of view of the lipid-bilayer membrane, its structure, dynamics, and cooperative phenomena. Based on a variety of theoretical considerations and model calculations, the nature of lipid-protein interactions is considered both for a single protein and an assembly of proteins that can lead to aggregation and protein crystallization in the plane of the membrane. Phenomena discussed include lipid sorting and selectivity at protein surfaces, protein-lipid phase equilibria, lipid-mediated protein-protein interactions, wetting and capillary condensation as means of protein organization, mechanisms of two-dimensional protein crystallization, as well as non-equilibrium organization of active proteins in membranes. The theoretical findings are compared with a variety of experimental data. PMID:9804966

  8. Lipidic phase membrane protein serial femtosecond crystallography

    PubMed Central

    Johansson, Linda C; Arnlund, David; White, Thomas A; Katona, Gergely; DePonte, Daniel P; Weierstall, Uwe; Doak, R Bruce; Shoeman, Robert L; Lomb, Lukas; Malmerberg, Erik; Davidsson, Jan; Nass, Karol; Liang, Mengning; Andreasson, Jakob; Aquila, Andrew; Bajt, Sasa; Barthelmess, Miriam; Barty, Anton; Bogan, Michael J; Bostedt, Christoph; Bozek, John D; Caleman, Carl; Coffee, Ryan; Coppola, Nicola; Ekeberg, Tomas; Epp, Sascha W; Erk, Benjamin; Fleckenstein, Holger; Foucar, Lutz; Graafsma, Heinz; Gumprecht, Lars; Hajdu, Janos; Hampton, Christina Y; Hartmann, Robert; Hartmann, Andreas; Hauser, Günter; Hirsemann, Helmut; Holl, Peter; Hunter, Mark S; Kassemeyer, Stephan; Kimmel, Nils; Kirian, Richard A; Maia, Filipe R N C; Marchesini, Stefano; Martin, Andrew V; Reich, Christian; Rolles, Daniel; Rudek, Benedikt; Rudenko, Artem; Schlichting, Ilme; Schulz, Joachim; Seibert, M Marvin; Sierra, Raymond G; Soltau, Heike; Starodub, Dmitri; Stellato, Francesco; Stern, Stephan; Strüder, Lothar; Timneanu, Nicusor; Ullrich, Joachim; Wahlgren, Weixiao Y; Wang, Xiaoyu; Weidenspointner, Georg; Wunderer, Cornelia; Fromme, Petra; Chapman, Henry N; Spence, John C H; Neutze, Richard

    2012-01-01

    X-ray free electron laser (X-feL)-based serial femtosecond crystallography is an emerging method with potential to rapidly advance the challenging field of membrane protein structural biology. here we recorded interpretable diffraction data from micrometer-sized lipidic sponge phase crystals of the Blastochloris viridis photosynthetic reaction center delivered into an X-feL beam using a sponge phase micro-jet. PMID:22286383

  9. Membrane tension controls the assembly of curvature-generating proteins

    PubMed Central

    Simunovic, Mijo; Voth, Gregory A.

    2015-01-01

    Proteins containing a Bin/Amphiphysin/Rvs (BAR) domain regulate membrane curvature in the cell. Recent simulations have revealed that BAR proteins assemble into linear aggregates, strongly affecting membrane curvature and its in-plane stress profile. Here, we explore the opposite question: do mechanical properties of the membrane impact protein association? By using coarse-grained molecular dynamics simulations, we show that increased surface tension significantly impacts the dynamics of protein assembly. While tensionless membranes promote a rapid formation of long-living linear aggregates of N-BAR proteins, increase in tension alters the geometry of protein association. At high tension, protein interactions are strongly inhibited. Increasing surface density of proteins leads to a wider range of protein association geometries, promoting the formation of meshes, which can be broken apart with membrane tension. Our work indicates that surface tension may play a key role in recruiting proteins to membrane-remodelling sites in the cell. PMID:26008710

  10. Crystallizing Membrane Proteins Using Lipidic Mesophases

    PubMed Central

    Caffrey, Martin; Cherezov, Vadim

    2009-01-01

    A detailed protocol for crystallizing membrane proteins that makes use of lipidic mesophases is described. This has variously been referred to as the lipid cubic phase or in meso method. The method has been shown to be quite general in that it has been used to solve X-ray crystallographic structures of prokaryotic and eukaryotic proteins, proteins that are monomeric, homo- and hetero-multimeric, chromophore-containing and chromophore-free, and α-helical and β-barrel proteins. Its most recent successes are the human engineered β2-adrenergic and adenosine A2A G protein-coupled receptors. Protocols are provided for preparing and characterizing the lipidic mesophase, for reconstituting the protein into the monoolein-based mesophase, for functional assay of the protein in the mesophase, and for setting up crystallizations in manual mode. Methods for harvesting micro-crystals are also described. The time required to prepare the protein-loaded mesophase and to set up a crystallization plate manually is about one hour. PMID:19390528

  11. Nramp defines a family of membrane proteins.

    PubMed Central

    Cellier, M; Privé, G; Belouchi, A; Kwan, T; Rodrigues, V; Chia, W; Gros, P

    1995-01-01

    Nramp (natural resistance-associated macrophage protein) is a newly identified family of integral membrane proteins whose biochemical function is unknown. We report on the identification of Nramp homologs from the fly Drosophila melanogaster, the plant Oryza sativa, and the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae. Optimal alignment of protein sequences required insertion of very few gaps and revealed remarkable sequence identity of 28% (yeast), 40% (plant), and 55% (fly) with the mammalian proteins (46%, 58%, and 73% similarity), as well as a common predicted transmembrane topology. This family is defined by a highly conserved hydrophobic core encoding 10 transmembrane segments. Other features of this hydrophobic core include several invariant charged residues, helical periodicity of sequence conservation suggesting conserved and nonconserved faces for several transmembrane helices, a consensus transport signature on the intracytoplasmic face of the membrane, and structural determinants previously described in ion channels. These characteristics suggest that the Nramp polypeptides form part of a group of transporters or channels that act on as yet unidentified substrates. Images Fig. 1 PMID:7479731

  12. Reconstitution of the membrane protein OmpF into biomimetic block copolymer-phospholipid hybrid membranes.

    PubMed

    Bieligmeyer, Matthias; Artukovic, Franjo; Nussberger, Stephan; Hirth, Thomas; Schiestel, Thomas; Müller, Michaela

    2016-01-01

    Structure and function of many transmembrane proteins are affected by their environment. In this respect, reconstitution of a membrane protein into a biomimetic polymer membrane can alter its function. To overcome this problem we used membranes formed by poly(1,4-isoprene-block-ethylene oxide) block copolymers blended with 1,2-diphytanoyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphocholine. By reconstituting the outer membrane protein OmpF from Escherichia coli into these membranes, we demonstrate functionality of this protein in biomimetic lipopolymer membranes, independent of the molecular weight of the block copolymers. At low voltages, the channel conductance of OmpF in 1 M KCl was around 2.3 nS. In line with these experiments, integration of OmpF was also revealed by impedance spectroscopy. Our results indicate that blending synthetic polymer membranes with phospholipids allows for the reconstitution of transmembrane proteins under preservation of protein function, independent of the membrane thickness. PMID:27547605

  13. Reconstitution of the membrane protein OmpF into biomimetic block copolymer–phospholipid hybrid membranes

    PubMed Central

    Bieligmeyer, Matthias; Artukovic, Franjo; Hirth, Thomas; Schiestel, Thomas

    2016-01-01

    Summary Structure and function of many transmembrane proteins are affected by their environment. In this respect, reconstitution of a membrane protein into a biomimetic polymer membrane can alter its function. To overcome this problem we used membranes formed by poly(1,4-isoprene-block-ethylene oxide) block copolymers blended with 1,2-diphytanoyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphocholine. By reconstituting the outer membrane protein OmpF from Escherichia coli into these membranes, we demonstrate functionality of this protein in biomimetic lipopolymer membranes, independent of the molecular weight of the block copolymers. At low voltages, the channel conductance of OmpF in 1 M KCl was around 2.3 nS. In line with these experiments, integration of OmpF was also revealed by impedance spectroscopy. Our results indicate that blending synthetic polymer membranes with phospholipids allows for the reconstitution of transmembrane proteins under preservation of protein function, independent of the membrane thickness. PMID:27547605

  14. Amphipathic agents for membrane protein study.

    PubMed

    Sadaf, Aiman; Cho, Kyung Ho; Byrne, Bernadette; Chae, Pil Seok

    2015-01-01

    Membrane proteins (MPs) are insoluble in aqueous media as a result of incompatibility between the hydrophilic property of the solvent molecules and the hydrophobic nature of MP surfaces, normally associated with lipid membranes. Amphipathic compounds are necessary for extraction of these macromolecules from the native membranes and their maintenance in solution. The amphipathic agents surround the hydrophobic segments of MPs, thus serving as a membrane mimetic system. Of the available amphipathic agents, detergents are most widely used for MP manipulation. However, MPs encapsulated by conventional detergent micelles have a tendency to undergo structural degradation, hampering MP advance, and necessitating the development of novel detergents with enhanced efficacy for MP study. In this chapter, we will introduce both conventional and novel classes of detergents and discuss about the chemical structures, design principles, and efficacies of these compounds for MP solubilization and stabilization. The behaviors of those agents toward MP crystallization will be a primary topic in our discussion. This discussion highlights the common features of popular conventional/novel detergents essential for successful MP structural study. The conclusions reached by this discussion would not only enable MP scientists to rationally select a set of detergent candidates among a large number of detergents but also provide detergent inventors with useful guidelines in designing novel amphipathic systems. PMID:25950960

  15. Membrane protein assembly: genetic, evolutionary and medical perspectives.

    PubMed

    Manoil, C; Traxler, B

    1995-01-01

    Lipid bilayers are delicate structures that are easily disrupted by a variety of amphipathic molecules. Yet the viability of a cell requires the continued assembly of large amphipathic proteins within its membranes without damage. The need to minimize bilayer disruption may account for a number of fundamental features of membrane protein assembly. These include the use of redundant sequence information to establish the topologies and folded structures of membrane proteins, and the existence of efficient mechanisms to rid cells of misassembled proteins. Most missense mutations that inactivate a membrane protein probably do so by altering the folding of the membrane-inserted structure rather than by rearranging the topology or by changing key residues involved directly in function. Such misfolded membrane proteins may be toxic to cells if they escape cellular safeguards. This toxicity may underlie some human degenerative diseases due to mutant membrane proteins. PMID:8825471

  16. Membrane curvature and its generation by BAR proteins

    PubMed Central

    Mim, Carsten; Unger, Vinzenz M

    2012-01-01

    Membranes are flexible barriers that surround the cell and its compartments. To execute vital functions such as locomotion or receptor turnover, cells need to control the shapes of their membranes. In part, this control is achieved through membrane-bending proteins, such as the bin/amphiphysin/rvs domain (BAR) proteins. Many open questions remain about the mechanisms by which membrane-bending proteins function. Addressing this shortfall, recent structures of BAR protein:membrane complexes support existing mechanistic models, but also produced novel insights into how BAR-domain proteins sense, stabilize and generate curvature. Here we review these recent findings, focusing on how BAR proteins interact with the membrane, and how the resulting scaffold structures might aid the recruitment of other proteins to the sites where membranes are bent. PMID:23058040

  17. Hydrophobic mismatch sorts SNARE proteins into distinct membrane domains

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Milovanovic, Dragomir; Honigmann, Alf; Koike, Seiichi; Göttfert, Fabian; Pähler, Gesa; Junius, Meike; Müllar, Stefan; Diederichsen, Ulf; Janshoff, Andreas; Grubmüller, Helmut; Risselada, Herre J.; Eggeling, Christian; Hell, Stefan W.; van den Bogaart, Geert; Jahn, Reinhard

    2015-01-01

    The clustering of proteins and lipids in distinct microdomains is emerging as an important principle for the spatial patterning of biological membranes. Such domain formation can be the result of hydrophobic and ionic interactions with membrane lipids as well as of specific protein-protein interactions. Here using plasma membrane-resident SNARE proteins as model, we show that hydrophobic mismatch between the length of transmembrane domains (TMDs) and the thickness of the lipid membrane suffices to induce clustering of proteins. Even when the TMDs differ in length by only a single residue, hydrophobic mismatch can segregate structurally closely homologous membrane proteins in distinct membrane domains. Domain formation is further fine-tuned by interactions with polyanionic phosphoinositides and homo and heterotypic protein interactions. Our findings demonstrate that hydrophobic mismatch contributes to the structural organization of membranes.

  18. A saposin-lipoprotein nanoparticle system for membrane proteins.

    PubMed

    Frauenfeld, Jens; Löving, Robin; Armache, Jean-Paul; Sonnen, Andreas F-P; Guettou, Fatma; Moberg, Per; Zhu, Lin; Jegerschöld, Caroline; Flayhan, Ali; Briggs, John A G; Garoff, Henrik; Löw, Christian; Cheng, Yifan; Nordlund, Pär

    2016-04-01

    A limiting factor in membrane protein research is the ability to solubilize and stabilize such proteins. Detergents are used most often for solubilizing membrane proteins, but they are associated with protein instability and poor compatibility with structural and biophysical studies. Here we present a saposin-lipoprotein nanoparticle system, Salipro, which allows for the reconstitution of membrane proteins in a lipid environment that is stabilized by a scaffold of saposin proteins. We demonstrate the applicability of the method on two purified membrane protein complexes as well as by the direct solubilization and nanoparticle incorporation of a viral membrane protein complex from the virus membrane. Our approach facilitated high-resolution structural studies of the bacterial peptide transporter PeptTSo2 by single-particle cryo-electron microscopy (cryo-EM) and allowed us to stabilize the HIV envelope glycoprotein in a functional state. PMID:26950744

  19. Large-scale proteomic analysis of membrane proteins

    SciTech Connect

    Ahram, Mamoun; Springer, David L.

    2004-10-01

    Proteomic analysis of membrane proteins is promising in identification of novel candidates as drug targets and/or disease biomarkers. Despite notable technological developments, obstacles related to extraction and solubilization of membrane proteins are frequently encountered. A critical discussion of the different preparative methods of membrane proteins is offered in relation to downstream proteomic applications, mainly gel-based analyses and mass spectrometry. Unknown proteins are often identified by high-throughput profiling of membrane proteins. In search for novel membrane proteins, analysis of protein sequences using computational tools is performed to predict for the presence of transmembrane domains. Here, we also present these bioinformatic tools with the human proteome as a case study. Along with technological innovations, advancements in the areas of sample preparation and computational prediction of membrane proteins will lead to exciting discoveries.

  20. Membrane shape instabilities induced by BAR domain proteins

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Baumgart, Tobias

    2014-03-01

    Membrane curvature has developed into a forefront of membrane biophysics. Numerous proteins involved in membrane curvature sensing and membrane curvature generation have recently been discovered, including proteins containing the crescent-shaped BAR domain as membrane binding and shaping module. Accordingly, the structure determination of these proteins and their multimeric complexes is increasingly well-understood. Substantially less understood, however, are thermodynamic and kinetic aspects and the detailed mechanisms of how these proteins interact with membranes in a curvature-dependent manner. New experimental approaches need to be combined with established techniques to be able to fill in these missing details. Here we use model membrane systems in combination with a variety of biophysical techniques to characterize mechanistic aspects of BAR domain protein function. This includes a characterization of membrane curvature sensing and membrane generation. We also establish kinetic and thermodynamic aspects of BAR protein dimerization in solution, and investigate kinetic aspects of membrane binding. We present two new approaches to investigate membrane shape instabilities and demonstrate that membrane shape instabilities can be controlled by protein binding and lateral membrane tension. This work is supported through NIH grant GM-097552 and NSF grant CBET-1053857.

  1. Dynamic Nuclear Polarization Methods in Solids and Solutions to Explore Membrane Proteins and Membrane Systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cheng, Chi-Yuan; Han, Songi

    2013-04-01

    Membrane proteins regulate vital cellular processes, including signaling, ion transport, and vesicular trafficking. Obtaining experimental access to their structures, conformational fluctuations, orientations, locations, and hydration in membrane environments, as well as the lipid membrane properties, is critical to understanding their functions. Dynamic nuclear polarization (DNP) of frozen solids can dramatically boost the sensitivity of current solid-state nuclear magnetic resonance tools to enhance access to membrane protein structures in native membrane environments. Overhauser DNP in the solution state can map out the local and site-specific hydration dynamics landscape of membrane proteins and lipid membranes, critically complementing the structural and dynamics information obtained by electron paramagnetic resonance spectroscopy. Here, we provide an overview of how DNP methods in solids and solutions can significantly increase our understanding of membrane protein structures, dynamics, functions, and hydration in complex biological membrane environments.

  2. Dynamic nuclear polarization methods in solids and solutions to explore membrane proteins and membrane systems.

    PubMed

    Cheng, Chi-Yuan; Han, Songi

    2013-01-01

    Membrane proteins regulate vital cellular processes, including signaling, ion transport, and vesicular trafficking. Obtaining experimental access to their structures, conformational fluctuations, orientations, locations, and hydration in membrane environments, as well as the lipid membrane properties, is critical to understanding their functions. Dynamic nuclear polarization (DNP) of frozen solids can dramatically boost the sensitivity of current solid-state nuclear magnetic resonance tools to enhance access to membrane protein structures in native membrane environments. Overhauser DNP in the solution state can map out the local and site-specific hydration dynamics landscape of membrane proteins and lipid membranes, critically complementing the structural and dynamics information obtained by electron paramagnetic resonance spectroscopy. Here, we provide an overview of how DNP methods in solids and solutions can significantly increase our understanding of membrane protein structures, dynamics, functions, and hydration in complex biological membrane environments. PMID:23331309

  3. Mass Spectrometry of Membrane Proteins: A Focus on Aquaporins

    PubMed Central

    Schey, Kevin L.; Grey, Angus C.; Nicklay, Joshua J.

    2015-01-01

    Membrane proteins are abundant, critically important biomolecules that conduct essential functions in all cells and are the targets of a significant number of therapeutic drugs. However, the analysis of their expression, modification, protein–protein interactions, and structure by mass spectrometry has lagged behind similar studies of soluble proteins. Here we review the limitations to analysis of integral membrane and membrane-associated proteins and highlight advances in sample preparation and mass spectrometry methods that have led to the successful analysis of this protein class. Advances in the analysis of membrane protein posttranslational modification, protein–protein interaction, protein structure, and tissue distributions by imaging mass spectrometry are discussed. Furthermore, we focus our discussion on the application of mass spectrometry for the analysis of aquaporins as a prototypical integral membrane protein and how advances in analytical methods have revealed new biological insights into the structure and function of this family of proteins. PMID:23394619

  4. A Prediction Model for Membrane Proteins Using Moments Based Features.

    PubMed

    Butt, Ahmad Hassan; Khan, Sher Afzal; Jamil, Hamza; Rasool, Nouman; Khan, Yaser Daanial

    2016-01-01

    The most expedient unit of the human body is its cell. Encapsulated within the cell are many infinitesimal entities and molecules which are protected by a cell membrane. The proteins that are associated with this lipid based bilayer cell membrane are known as membrane proteins and are considered to play a significant role. These membrane proteins exhibit their effect in cellular activities inside and outside of the cell. According to the scientists in pharmaceutical organizations, these membrane proteins perform key task in drug interactions. In this study, a technique is presented that is based on various computationally intelligent methods used for the prediction of membrane protein without the experimental use of mass spectrometry. Statistical moments were used to extract features and furthermore a Multilayer Neural Network was trained using backpropagation for the prediction of membrane proteins. Results show that the proposed technique performs better than existing methodologies. PMID:26966690

  5. Hydrophobic mismatch sorts SNARE proteins into distinct membrane domains

    PubMed Central

    Milovanovic, Dragomir; Honigmann, Alf; Koike, Seiichi; Göttfert, Fabian; Pähler, Gesa; Junius, Meike; Müllar, Stefan; Diederichsen, Ulf; Janshoff, Andreas; Grubmüller, Helmut; Risselada, Herre J.; Eggeling, Christian; Hell, Stefan W.; van den Bogaart, Geert; Jahn, Reinhard

    2015-01-01

    The clustering of proteins and lipids in distinct microdomains is emerging as an important principle for the spatial patterning of biological membranes. Such domain formation can be the result of hydrophobic and ionic interactions with membrane lipids as well as of specific protein–protein interactions. Here using plasma membrane-resident SNARE proteins as model, we show that hydrophobic mismatch between the length of transmembrane domains (TMDs) and the thickness of the lipid membrane suffices to induce clustering of proteins. Even when the TMDs differ in length by only a single residue, hydrophobic mismatch can segregate structurally closely homologous membrane proteins in distinct membrane domains. Domain formation is further fine-tuned by interactions with polyanionic phosphoinositides and homo and heterotypic protein interactions. Our findings demonstrate that hydrophobic mismatch contributes to the structural organization of membranes. PMID:25635869

  6. A Prediction Model for Membrane Proteins Using Moments Based Features

    PubMed Central

    Butt, Ahmad Hassan; Khan, Sher Afzal; Jamil, Hamza; Rasool, Nouman; Khan, Yaser Daanial

    2016-01-01

    The most expedient unit of the human body is its cell. Encapsulated within the cell are many infinitesimal entities and molecules which are protected by a cell membrane. The proteins that are associated with this lipid based bilayer cell membrane are known as membrane proteins and are considered to play a significant role. These membrane proteins exhibit their effect in cellular activities inside and outside of the cell. According to the scientists in pharmaceutical organizations, these membrane proteins perform key task in drug interactions. In this study, a technique is presented that is based on various computationally intelligent methods used for the prediction of membrane protein without the experimental use of mass spectrometry. Statistical moments were used to extract features and furthermore a Multilayer Neural Network was trained using backpropagation for the prediction of membrane proteins. Results show that the proposed technique performs better than existing methodologies. PMID:26966690

  7. Role of membrane contact sites in protein import into mitochondria

    PubMed Central

    Horvath, Susanne E; Rampelt, Heike; Oeljeklaus, Silke; Warscheid, Bettina; van der Laan, Martin; Pfanner, Nikolaus

    2015-01-01

    Mitochondria import more than 1,000 different proteins from the cytosol. The proteins are synthesized as precursors on cytosolic ribosomes and are translocated by protein transport machineries of the mitochondrial membranes. Five main pathways for protein import into mitochondria have been identified. Most pathways use the translocase of the outer mitochondrial membrane (TOM) as the entry gate into mitochondria. Depending on specific signals contained in the precursors, the proteins are subsequently transferred to different intramitochondrial translocases. In this article, we discuss the connection between protein import and mitochondrial membrane architecture. Mitochondria possess two membranes. It is a long-standing question how contact sites between outer and inner membranes are formed and which role the contact sites play in the translocation of precursor proteins. A major translocation contact site is formed between the TOM complex and the presequence translocase of the inner membrane (TIM23 complex), promoting transfer of presequence-carrying preproteins to the mitochondrial inner membrane and matrix. Recent findings led to the identification of contact sites that involve the mitochondrial contact site and cristae organizing system (MICOS) of the inner membrane. MICOS plays a dual role. It is crucial for maintaining the inner membrane cristae architecture and forms contacts sites to the outer membrane that promote translocation of precursor proteins into the intermembrane space and outer membrane of mitochondria. The view is emerging that the mitochondrial protein translocases do not function as independent units, but are embedded in a network of interactions with machineries that control mitochondrial activity and architecture. PMID:25514890

  8. Dynamic membrane protein topological switching upon changes in phospholipid environment

    PubMed Central

    Vitrac, Heidi; MacLean, David M.; Jayaraman, Vasanthi; Bogdanov, Mikhail; Dowhan, William

    2015-01-01

    A fundamental objective in membrane biology is to understand and predict how a protein sequence folds and orients in a lipid bilayer. Establishing the principles governing membrane protein folding is central to understanding the molecular basis for membrane proteins that display multiple topologies, the intrinsic dynamic organization of membrane proteins, and membrane protein conformational disorders resulting in disease. We previously established that lactose permease of Escherichia coli displays a mixture of topological conformations and undergoes postassembly bidirectional changes in orientation within the lipid bilayer triggered by a change in membrane phosphatidylethanolamine content, both in vivo and in vitro. However, the physiological implications and mechanism of dynamic structural reorganization of membrane proteins due to changes in lipid environment are limited by the lack of approaches addressing the kinetic parameters of transmembrane protein flipping. In this study, real-time fluorescence spectroscopy was used to determine the rates of protein flipping in the lipid bilayer in both directions and transbilayer flipping of lipids triggered by a change in proteoliposome lipid composition. Our results provide, for the first time to our knowledge, a dynamic picture of these events and demonstrate that membrane protein topological rearrangements in response to lipid modulations occur rapidly following a threshold change in proteoliposome lipid composition. Protein flipping was not accompanied by extensive lipid-dependent unfolding of transmembrane domains. Establishment of lipid bilayer asymmetry was not required but may accelerate the rate of protein flipping. Membrane protein flipping was found to accelerate the rate of transbilayer flipping of lipids. PMID:26512118

  9. Protein crystals on phase-separating model membranes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Manley, Suliana; Horton, Margaret; Leszczynski, Szymon; Gast, Alice

    2006-03-01

    We study the interplay between the crystallization of proteins tethered to membranes and separation within the membranes of giant unilamellar vesicles (GUVs) composed of DOPC, sphingomyelin (SM), and cholesterol. These model membranes phase separate into coexisting liquid domains below a miscibility transition temperature. This phase separation captures some aspects of the formation of lipid rafts in cell membranes and demonstrates the influence of membrane composition on raft formation. Real cell membranes have a much more complicated structure. There are additional physical constraints present in cell membranes, such as their attachment to the cytoskeleton and the presence of membrane bound proteins. The self-association of membrane proteins can influence the membrane phase behavior. We begin to investigate these effects on model tethered protein- loaded membranes by incorporating a small amount of biotin-X- DPPE into our GUVs. The biotinylated lipid partitions into a cholesterol-poor phase; thus, streptavidin binds preferentially to one of the membrane phases. As streptavidin assembles to form crystalline domains, it restricts the membrane mobility. We examine the effect of this protein association on lipid phase separation, as well as the effect of the lipid phase separation on the crystallization of the tethered proteins.

  10. Membrane Protein Structure and Dynamics from NMR Spectroscopy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hong, Mei; Zhang, Yuan; Hu, Fanghao

    2012-05-01

    We review the current state of membrane protein structure determination using solid-state nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy. Multidimensional magic-angle-spinning correlation NMR combined with oriented-sample experiments has made it possible to measure a full panel of structural constraints of membrane proteins directly in lipid bilayers. These constraints include torsion angles, interatomic distances, oligomeric structure, protein dynamics, ligand structure and dynamics, and protein orientation and depth of insertion in the lipid bilayer. Using solid-state NMR, researchers have studied potassium channels, proton channels, Ca2+ pumps, G protein-coupled receptors, bacterial outer membrane proteins, and viral fusion proteins to elucidate their mechanisms of action. Many of these membrane proteins have also been investigated in detergent micelles using solution NMR. Comparison of the solid-state and solution NMR structures provides important insights into the effects of the solubilizing environment on membrane protein structure and dynamics.

  11. Structure Determination of Membrane Proteins by Nuclear Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Opella, Stanley J.

    2013-06-01

    Many biological membranes consist of 50% or more (by weight) membrane proteins, which constitute approximately one-third of all proteins expressed in biological organisms. Helical membrane proteins function as receptors, enzymes, and transporters, among other unique cellular roles. Additionally, most drugs have membrane proteins as their receptors, notably the superfamily of G protein-coupled receptors with seven transmembrane helices. Determining the structures of membrane proteins is a daunting task because of the effects of the membrane environment; specifically, it has been difficult to combine biologically compatible environments with the requirements for the established methods of structure determination. There is strong motivation to determine the structures in their native phospholipid bilayer environment so that perturbations from nonnatural lipids and phases do not have to be taken into account. At present, the only method that can work with proteins in liquid crystalline phospholipid bilayers is solid-state NMR spectroscopy.

  12. Marginally hydrophobic transmembrane α-helices shaping membrane protein folding

    PubMed Central

    De Marothy, Minttu T; Elofsson, Arne

    2015-01-01

    Cells have developed an incredible machinery to facilitate the insertion of membrane proteins into the membrane. While we have a fairly good understanding of the mechanism and determinants of membrane integration, more data is needed to understand the insertion of membrane proteins with more complex insertion and folding pathways. This review will focus on marginally hydrophobic transmembrane helices and their influence on membrane protein folding. These weakly hydrophobic transmembrane segments are by themselves not recognized by the translocon and therefore rely on local sequence context for membrane integration. How can such segments reside within the membrane? We will discuss this in the light of features found in the protein itself as well as the environment it resides in. Several characteristics in proteins have been described to influence the insertion of marginally hydrophobic helices. Additionally, the influence of biological membranes is significant. To begin with, the actual cost for having polar groups within the membrane may not be as high as expected; the presence of proteins in the membrane as well as characteristics of some amino acids may enable a transmembrane helix to harbor a charged residue. The lipid environment has also been shown to directly influence the topology as well as membrane boundaries of transmembrane helices—implying a dynamic relationship between membrane proteins and their environment. PMID:25970811

  13. Designing Mimics of Membrane Active Proteins

    PubMed Central

    Sgolastra, Federica; deRonde, Brittany M.; Sarapas, Joel M.; Som, Abhigyan; Tew, Gregory N.

    2014-01-01

    CONSPECTUS As a semi-permeable barrier that controls the flux of biomolecules in and out the cell, the plasma membrane is critical in cell function and survival. Many proteins interact with the plasma membrane and modulate its physiology. Within this large landscape of membrane-active molecules, researchers have focused significant attention on two specific classes of peptides, antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) and cell penetrating peptides (CPPs) because of their unique properties. In this account, we describe our efforts over the last decade to build and understand synthetic mimics of antimicrobial peptides (SMAMPs). These endeavors represent one specific example of a much larger effort to understand how synthetic molecules interact with and manipulate the plasma membrane. Using both defined molecular weight oligomers and easier to produce, but heterogeneous, polymers, it has been possible to generate scaffolds with biological potency superior to the natural analogs. In one case, a compound has progressed through a phase II clinical trial for pan)staph infections. Modern biophysical assays highlighted the interplay between the synthetic scaffold and lipid composition leading to negative Gaussian curvature, a requirement for both pore formation and endosomal escape. The complexity of this interplay between lipids, bilayer components, and the scaffolds remains to be better resolved, but significant new insight has been provided. It is worthwhile to consider the various aspects of permeation and how these are related to ‘pore formation.’ More recently, our efforts have expanded toward protein transduction domains, or cell penetrating peptide, mimics. The combination of unique molecular scaffolds and guanidinium) rich side chains has produced an array of polymers with robust transduction (and delivery) activity. Being a new area, the fundamental interactions between these new scaffolds and the plasma membrane are just beginning to be understood. Negative Gaussian

  14. Vertebrate Membrane Proteins: Structure, Function, and Insights from Biophysical Approaches

    PubMed Central

    MÜLLER, DANIEL J.; WU, NAN; PALCZEWSKI, KRZYSZTOF

    2008-01-01

    Membrane proteins are key targets for pharmacological intervention because they are vital for cellular function. Here, we analyze recent progress made in the understanding of the structure and function of membrane proteins with a focus on rhodopsin and development of atomic force microscopy techniques to study biological membranes. Membrane proteins are compartmentalized to carry out extra- and intracellular processes. Biological membranes are densely populated with membrane proteins that occupy approximately 50% of their volume. In most cases membranes contain lipid rafts, protein patches, or paracrystalline formations that lack the higher-order symmetry that would allow them to be characterized by diffraction methods. Despite many technical difficulties, several crystal structures of membrane proteins that illustrate their internal structural organization have been determined. Moreover, high-resolution atomic force microscopy, near-field scanning optical microscopy, and other lower resolution techniques have been used to investigate these structures. Single-molecule force spectroscopy tracks interactions that stabilize membrane proteins and those that switch their functional state; this spectroscopy can be applied to locate a ligand-binding site. Recent development of this technique also reveals the energy landscape of a membrane protein, defining its folding, reaction pathways, and kinetics. Future development and application of novel approaches during the coming years should provide even greater insights to the understanding of biological membrane organization and function. PMID:18321962

  15. Diffusing proteins on a fluctuating membrane: Analytical theory and simulations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Reister-Gottfried, Ellen; Leitenberger, Stefan M.; Seifert, Udo

    2010-03-01

    Using analytical calculations and computer simulations, we consider both the lateral diffusion of a membrane protein and the fluctuation spectrum of the membrane in which the protein is embedded. The membrane protein interacts with the membrane shape through its spontaneous curvature and bending rigidity. The lateral motion of the protein may be viewed as diffusion in an effective potential, hence, the effective mobility is always reduced compared to the case of free diffusion. Using a rigorous path-integral approach, we derive an analytical expression for the effective diffusion coefficient for small ratios of temperature and bending rigidity, which is the biologically relevant limit. Simulations show very good quantitative agreement with our analytical result. The analysis of the correlation functions contributing to the diffusion coefficient shows that the correlations between the stochastic force of the protein and the response in the membrane shape are responsible for the reduction. Our quantitative analysis of the membrane height correlation spectrum shows an influence of the protein-membrane interaction causing a distinctly altered wave-vector dependence compared to a free membrane. Furthermore, the time correlations exhibit the two relevant time scales of the system: that of membrane fluctuations and that of lateral protein diffusion with the latter typically much longer than the former. We argue that the analysis of the long-time decay of membrane height correlations can thus provide a new means to determine the effective diffusion coefficient of proteins in the membrane.

  16. Integrated system for extraction, purification, and digestion of membrane proteins.

    PubMed

    Liu, Yiying; Yan, Guoquan; Gao, Mingxia; Deng, Chunhui; Zhang, Xiangmin

    2016-05-01

    An integrated system was developed for directly processing living cells into peptides of membrane proteins. Living cells were directly injected into the system and cracked in a capillary column by ultrasonic treatment. Owing to hydrophilicity for broken pieces of the cell membrane, the obtained membranes were retained in a well-designed bi-filter. While cytoplasm proteins were eluted from the bi-filter, the membranes were dissolved and protein released by flushing 4 % SDS buffer through the bi-filter. The membrane proteins were subsequently transferred into a micro-reactor and covalently bound in the reactor for purification and digestion. As the system greatly simplified the whole pretreatment processes and minimized both sample loss and contamination, it could be used to analyze the membrane proteome samples of thousand-cell-scales with acceptable reliability and stability. We totally identified 1348 proteins from 5000 HepG2 cells, 615 of which were annotated as membrane proteins. In contrast, with conventional method, only 233 membrane proteins were identified. It is adequately demonstrated that the integrated system shows promising practicability for the membrane proteome analysis of small amount of cells. Graphical Abstract The legend of online abstract figure is (a) schematic illustration of membrane proteins extraction, purification and digestion from living cells; (b) diagrammatic sketch of the automatic integrated membrane proteome analysis system. PMID:26922343

  17. Adaptable Lipid Matrix Promotes Protein-Protein Association in Membranes.

    PubMed

    Kuznetsov, Andrey S; Polyansky, Anton A; Fleck, Markus; Volynsky, Pavel E; Efremov, Roman G

    2015-09-01

    The cell membrane is "stuffed" with proteins, whose transmembrane (TM) helical domains spontaneously associate to form functionally active complexes. For a number of membrane receptors, a modulation of TM domains' oligomerization has been shown to contribute to the development of severe pathological states, thus calling for detailed studies of the atomistic aspects of the process. Despite considerable progress achieved so far, several crucial questions still remain: How do the helices recognize each other in the membrane? What is the driving force of their association? Here, we assess the dimerization free energy of TM helices along with a careful consideration of the interplay between the structure and dynamics of protein and lipids using atomistic molecular dynamics simulations in the hydrated lipid bilayer for three different model systems - TM fragments of glycophorin A, polyalanine and polyleucine peptides. We observe that the membrane driven association of TM helices exhibits a prominent entropic character, which depends on the peptide sequence. Thus, a single TM peptide of a given composition induces strong and characteristic perturbations in the hydrophobic core of the bilayer, which may facilitate the initial "communication" between TM helices even at the distances of 20-30 Å. Upon tight helix-helix association, the immobilized lipids accommodate near the peripheral surfaces of the dimer, thus disturbing the packing of the surrounding. The dimerization free energy of the modeled peptides corresponds to the strength of their interactions with lipids inside the membrane being the lowest for glycophorin A and similarly higher for both homopolymers. We propose that the ability to accommodate lipid tails determines the dimerization strength of TM peptides and that the lipid matrix directly governs their association. PMID:26575933

  18. Extracellular Protease Digestion to Evaluate Membrane Protein Cell Surface Localization

    PubMed Central

    Besingi, Richard N.; Clark, Patricia L.

    2016-01-01

    Membrane proteins play crucial roles in signaling and as anchors for cell surface display. Proper secretion of a membrane protein can be evaluated by its susceptibility to digestion by an extracellular protease, but this requires a crucial control to confirm membrane integrity during digestion. This protocol describes how to use this approach to determine how efficiently a protein is secreted to the outer surface of Gram-negative bacteria. Its success relies upon careful selection of an appropriate intracellular reporter protein that will remain undigested if the membrane barrier remains intact, but is rapidly digested when cells are lysed prior to evaluation. Reporter proteins that are resistant to proteases (e.g. maltose-binding protein) do not return accurate results; in contrast, proteins that are more readily digested (e.g. SurA) serve as more sensitive reporters of membrane integrity, yielding more accurate measurements of membrane protein localization. Similar considerations apply when evaluating membrane protein localization in other contexts, including eukaryotic cells and organelle membranes. Evaluating membrane protein localization using this approach requires only standard biochemistry laboratory equipment for cell lysis, gel electrophoresis and western blotting. After expression of the protein of interest, this procedure can be completed in 4 h. PMID:26584447

  19. Fluctuating hydrodynamics of multicomponent membranes with embedded proteins

    SciTech Connect

    Camley, Brian A.; Brown, Frank L. H.

    2014-08-21

    A simulation method for the dynamics of inhomogeneous lipid bilayer membranes is presented. The membrane is treated using stochastic Saffman-Delbrück hydrodynamics, coupled to a phase-field description of lipid composition and discrete membrane proteins. Multiple applications are considered to validate and parameterize the model. The dynamics of membrane composition fluctuations above the critical point and phase separation dynamics below the critical point are studied in some detail, including the effects of adding proteins to the mixture.

  20. Dynamic nuclear polarization of membrane proteins: covalently bound spin-labels at protein-protein interfaces.

    PubMed

    Wylie, Benjamin J; Dzikovski, Boris G; Pawsey, Shane; Caporini, Marc; Rosay, Melanie; Freed, Jack H; McDermott, Ann E

    2015-04-01

    We demonstrate that dynamic nuclear polarization of membrane proteins in lipid bilayers may be achieved using a novel polarizing agent: pairs of spin labels covalently bound to a protein of interest interacting at an intermolecular interaction surface. For gramicidin A, nitroxide tags attached to the N-terminal intermolecular interface region become proximal only when bimolecular channels forms in the membrane. We obtained signal enhancements of sixfold for the dimeric protein. The enhancement effect was comparable to that of a doubly tagged sample of gramicidin C, with intramolecular spin pairs. This approach could be a powerful and selective means for signal enhancement in membrane proteins, and for recognizing intermolecular interfaces. PMID:25828256

  1. Study of polytopic membrane protein topological organization as a function of membrane lipid composition.

    PubMed

    Bogdanov, Mikhail; Heacock, Philip N; Dowhan, William

    2010-01-01

    A protocol is described using lipid mutants and thiol-specific chemical reagents to study lipid-dependent and host-specific membrane protein topogenesis by the substituted-cysteine accessibility method as applied to transmembrane domains (SCAM). SCAM is adapted to follow changes in membrane protein topology as a function of changes in membrane lipid composition. The strategy described can be adapted to any membrane system. PMID:20419405

  2. Structure Determination of Membrane Proteins by Nuclear Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy

    PubMed Central

    Opella, Stanley J.

    2014-01-01

    Many biological membranes consist of 50% or more (by weight) membrane proteins, which constitute approximately one-third of all proteins expressed in biological organisms. Helical membrane proteins function as receptors, enzymes, and transporters, among other unique cellular roles. Additionally, most drugs have membrane proteins as their receptors, notably the superfamily of G protein–coupled receptors with seven transmembrane helices. Determining the structures of membrane proteins is a daunting task because of the effects of the membrane environment; specifically, it has been difficult to combine biologically compatible environments with the requirements for the established methods of structure determination. There is strong motivation to determine the structures in their native phospholipid bilayer environment so that perturbations from nonnatural lipids and phases do not have to be taken into account. At present, the only method that can work with proteins in liquid crystalline phospholipid bilayers is solid-state NMR spectroscopy. PMID:23577669

  3. A novel lipoprotein nanoparticle system for membrane proteins

    PubMed Central

    Frauenfeld, Jens; Löving, Robin; Armache, Jean-Paul; Sonnen, Andreas; Guettou, Fatma; Moberg, Per; Zhu, Lin; Jegerschöld, Caroline; Flayhan, Ali; Briggs, John A.G.; Garoff, Henrik; Löw, Christian; Cheng, Yifan; Nordlund, Pär

    2016-01-01

    Membrane proteins are of outstanding importance in biology, drug discovery and vaccination. A common limiting factor in research and applications involving membrane proteins is the ability to solubilize and stabilize membrane proteins. Although detergents represent the major means for solubilizing membrane proteins, they are often associated with protein instability and poor applicability in structural and biophysical studies. Here, we present a novel lipoprotein nanoparticle system that allows for the reconstitution of membrane proteins into a lipid environment that is stabilized by a scaffold of Saposin proteins. We showcase the applicability of the method on two purified membrane protein complexes as well as the direct solubilization and nanoparticle-incorporation of a viral membrane protein complex from the virus membrane. We also demonstrate that this lipid nanoparticle methodology facilitates high-resolution structural studies of membrane proteins in a lipid environment by single-particle electron cryo-microscopy (cryo-EM) and allows for the stabilization of the HIV-envelope glycoprotein in a functional state. PMID:26950744

  4. Membrane-Mediated Interaction between Strongly Anisotropic Protein Scaffolds

    PubMed Central

    Schweitzer, Yonatan; Kozlov, Michael M.

    2015-01-01

    Specialized proteins serve as scaffolds sculpting strongly curved membranes of intracellular organelles. Effective membrane shaping requires segregation of these proteins into domains and is, therefore, critically dependent on the protein-protein interaction. Interactions mediated by membrane elastic deformations have been extensively analyzed within approximations of large inter-protein distances, small extents of the protein-mediated membrane bending and small deviations of the protein shapes from isotropic spherical segments. At the same time, important classes of the realistic membrane-shaping proteins have strongly elongated shapes with large and highly anisotropic curvature. Here we investigated, computationally, the membrane mediated interaction between proteins or protein oligomers representing membrane scaffolds with strongly anisotropic curvature, and addressed, quantitatively, a specific case of the scaffold geometrical parameters characterizing BAR domains, which are crucial for membrane shaping in endocytosis. In addition to the previously analyzed contributions to the interaction, we considered a repulsive force stemming from the entropy of the scaffold orientation. We computed this interaction to be of the same order of magnitude as the well-known attractive force related to the entropy of membrane undulations. We demonstrated the scaffold shape anisotropy to cause a mutual aligning of the scaffolds and to generate a strong attractive interaction bringing the scaffolds close to each other to equilibrium distances much smaller than the scaffold size. We computed the energy of interaction between scaffolds of a realistic geometry to constitute tens of kBT, which guarantees a robust segregation of the scaffolds into domains. PMID:25710602

  5. Protein-Induced Modulation of Chloroplast Membrane Morphology

    PubMed Central

    Machettira, Anu B.; Groß, Lucia E.; Tillmann, Bodo; Weis, Benjamin L.; Englich, Gisela; Sommer, Maik S.; Königer, Martina; Schleiff, Enrico

    2012-01-01

    Organelles are surrounded by membranes with a distinct lipid and protein composition. While it is well established that lipids affect protein functioning and vice versa, it has been only recently suggested that elevated membrane protein concentrations may affect the shape and organization of membranes. We therefore analyzed the effects of high chloroplast envelope protein concentrations on membrane structures using an in vivo approach with protoplasts. Transient expression of outer envelope proteins or protein domains such as CHUP1-TM–GFP, outer envelope protein of 7 kDa–GFP, or outer envelope protein of 24 kDa–GFP at high levels led to the formation of punctate, circular, and tubular membrane protrusions. Expression of inner membrane proteins such as translocase of inner chloroplast membrane 20, isoform II (Tic20-II)–GFP led to membrane protrusions including invaginations. Using increasing amounts of DNA for transfection, we could show that the frequency, size, and intensity of these protrusions increased with protein concentration. The membrane deformations were absent after cycloheximide treatment. Co-expression of CHUP1-TM–Cherry and Tic20-II–GFP led to membrane protrusions of various shapes and sizes including some stromule-like structures, for which several functions have been proposed. Interestingly, some structures seemed to contain both proteins, while others seem to contain one protein exclusively, indicating that outer and inner envelope dynamics might be regulated independently. While it was more difficult to investigate the effects of high expression levels of membrane proteins on mitochondrial membrane shapes using confocal imaging, it was striking that the expression of the outer membrane protein Tom20 led to more elongate mitochondria. We discuss that the effect of protein concentrations on membrane structure is possibly caused by an imbalance in the lipid to protein ratio and may be involved in a signaling pathway regulating membrane

  6. An Integrated Framework Advancing Membrane Protein Modeling and Design

    PubMed Central

    Weitzner, Brian D.; Duran, Amanda M.; Tilley, Drew C.; Elazar, Assaf; Gray, Jeffrey J.

    2015-01-01

    Membrane proteins are critical functional molecules in the human body, constituting more than 30% of open reading frames in the human genome. Unfortunately, a myriad of difficulties in overexpression and reconstitution into membrane mimetics severely limit our ability to determine their structures. Computational tools are therefore instrumental to membrane protein structure prediction, consequently increasing our understanding of membrane protein function and their role in disease. Here, we describe a general framework facilitating membrane protein modeling and design that combines the scientific principles for membrane protein modeling with the flexible software architecture of Rosetta3. This new framework, called RosettaMP, provides a general membrane representation that interfaces with scoring, conformational sampling, and mutation routines that can be easily combined to create new protocols. To demonstrate the capabilities of this implementation, we developed four proof-of-concept applications for (1) prediction of free energy changes upon mutation; (2) high-resolution structural refinement; (3) protein-protein docking; and (4) assembly of symmetric protein complexes, all in the membrane environment. Preliminary data show that these algorithms can produce meaningful scores and structures. The data also suggest needed improvements to both sampling routines and score functions. Importantly, the applications collectively demonstrate the potential of combining the flexible nature of RosettaMP with the power of Rosetta algorithms to facilitate membrane protein modeling and design. PMID:26325167

  7. An Integrated Framework Advancing Membrane Protein Modeling and Design.

    PubMed

    Alford, Rebecca F; Koehler Leman, Julia; Weitzner, Brian D; Duran, Amanda M; Tilley, Drew C; Elazar, Assaf; Gray, Jeffrey J

    2015-09-01

    Membrane proteins are critical functional molecules in the human body, constituting more than 30% of open reading frames in the human genome. Unfortunately, a myriad of difficulties in overexpression and reconstitution into membrane mimetics severely limit our ability to determine their structures. Computational tools are therefore instrumental to membrane protein structure prediction, consequently increasing our understanding of membrane protein function and their role in disease. Here, we describe a general framework facilitating membrane protein modeling and design that combines the scientific principles for membrane protein modeling with the flexible software architecture of Rosetta3. This new framework, called RosettaMP, provides a general membrane representation that interfaces with scoring, conformational sampling, and mutation routines that can be easily combined to create new protocols. To demonstrate the capabilities of this implementation, we developed four proof-of-concept applications for (1) prediction of free energy changes upon mutation; (2) high-resolution structural refinement; (3) protein-protein docking; and (4) assembly of symmetric protein complexes, all in the membrane environment. Preliminary data show that these algorithms can produce meaningful scores and structures. The data also suggest needed improvements to both sampling routines and score functions. Importantly, the applications collectively demonstrate the potential of combining the flexible nature of RosettaMP with the power of Rosetta algorithms to facilitate membrane protein modeling and design. PMID:26325167

  8. Sampling the membrane: function of rhomboid-family proteins.

    PubMed

    Lemberg, Marius K

    2013-05-01

    Rhomboids constitute a conserved protein superfamily that specifically binds membrane proteins and directs them into various different cellular pathways ranging from regulated secretion to endoplasmic reticulum (ER)-associated degradation (ERAD). Rhomboid proteases are known to release protein domains from membranes by a cut in their membrane anchor, whereas an emerging new class of rhomboid-family proteins lacks key catalytic residues and is not proteolytically active. Recent work has shown that these rhomboid pseudoproteases, including iRhoms and derlins, bind membrane proteins to regulate their fate, but the underlying molecular mechanism is not known. This review summarizes recent advances in the molecular understanding of rhomboid-family proteins and discusses common principles in how they recognize and bind proteins in the plane of the membrane. PMID:23369641

  9. A topological and conformational stability alphabet for multipass membrane proteins.

    PubMed

    Feng, Xiang; Barth, Patrick

    2016-03-01

    Multipass membrane proteins perform critical signal transduction and transport across membranes. How transmembrane helix (TMH) sequences encode the topology and conformational flexibility regulating these functions remains poorly understood. Here we describe a comprehensive analysis of the sequence-structure relationships at multiple interacting TMHs from all membrane proteins with structures in the Protein Data Bank (PDB). We found that membrane proteins can be deconstructed in interacting TMH trimer units, which mostly fold into six distinct structural classes of topologies and conformations. Each class is enriched in recurrent sequence motifs from functionally unrelated proteins, revealing unforeseen consensus and evolutionary conserved networks of stabilizing interhelical contacts. Interacting TMHs' topology and local protein conformational flexibility were remarkably well predicted in a blinded fashion from the identified binding-hotspot motifs. Our results reveal universal sequence-structure principles governing the complex anatomy and plasticity of multipass membrane proteins that may guide de novo structure prediction, design, and studies of folding and dynamics. PMID:26780406

  10. Intrinsic membrane association of Drosophila cysteine string proteins.

    PubMed

    Mastrogiacomo, A; Kohan, S A; Whitelegge, J P; Gundersen, C B

    1998-09-25

    Cysteine string proteins (csps) are highly conserved constituents of vertebrate and invertebrate secretory organelles. Biochemical and immunoprecipitation experiments implied that vertebrate csps were integral membrane proteins that were tethered to the outer leaflet of secretory vesicles via the fatty acyl residues of their extensively acylated cysteine string. Independently, work of others suggested that Drosophila csps were peripheral membrane proteins that were anchored to membranes by a mechanism that was independent of the cysteine string and its fatty acyl residues. We extended these investigation and found first that sodium carbonate treatment partially stripped both csps and the integral membrane protein, synaptotagmin, from Drosophila membranes. Concomitantly, carbonate released fatty acids into the medium, arguing that it has a mild, solubilizing effect on these membranes. Second, we observed that Drosophila csps behaved like integral membrane proteins in Triton X-114 partitioning experiments. Third, we found that when membrane-bound csps were deacylated, they remained membrane bound. Moreover, it appeared that hydrophobic interactions were necessary for this persistent membrane association of csps. Thus, neither reducing conditions, urea, nor chaotropic agents displaced deacylated csps from membranes. Only detergents were effective in solubilizing deacylated csps. Finally, by virtue of the inaccessibility of deacylated csps to thiol alkylation by the membrane-impermeant alkylating reagent, iodoacetic acid, we inferred that it was the cysteine string domain that mediated the membrane association of deacylated csps. Thus, we conclude that under physiological conditions csps are integral membrane proteins of secretory organelles, and that the cysteine string domain plays a vital role in the membrane association of these proteins. PMID:9771899

  11. The Use of Detergents to Purify Membrane Proteins.

    PubMed

    Orwick-Rydmark, Marcella; Arnold, Thomas; Linke, Dirk

    2016-01-01

    Extraction of membrane proteins from biological membranes is usually accomplished with the help of detergents. This unit describes the use of detergents to solubilize and purify membrane proteins. The chemical and physical properties of the different classes of detergents typically used with biological samples are discussed. A separate section addresses the compatibility of detergents with applications downstream of the membrane protein purification process, such as optical spectroscopy, mass spectrometry, protein crystallography, biomolecular NMR, or electron microscopy. A brief summary of alternative membrane protein solubilizing and stabilizing systems is also included. Protocols in this unit include the isolation and solubilization of biological membranes and phase separation; support protocols for detergent removal, detergent exchange, and the determination of critical micelle concentration using different methods are also included. PMID:27038269

  12. Bilayer-thickness-mediated interactions between integral membrane proteins.

    PubMed

    Kahraman, Osman; Koch, Peter D; Klug, William S; Haselwandter, Christoph A

    2016-04-01

    Hydrophobic thickness mismatch between integral membrane proteins and the surrounding lipid bilayer can produce lipid bilayer thickness deformations. Experiment and theory have shown that protein-induced lipid bilayer thickness deformations can yield energetically favorable bilayer-mediated interactions between integral membrane proteins, and large-scale organization of integral membrane proteins into protein clusters in cell membranes. Within the continuum elasticity theory of membranes, the energy cost of protein-induced bilayer thickness deformations can be captured by considering compression and expansion of the bilayer hydrophobic core, membrane tension, and bilayer bending, resulting in biharmonic equilibrium equations describing the shape of lipid bilayers for a given set of bilayer-protein boundary conditions. Here we develop a combined analytic and numerical methodology for the solution of the equilibrium elastic equations associated with protein-induced lipid bilayer deformations. Our methodology allows accurate prediction of thickness-mediated protein interactions for arbitrary protein symmetries at arbitrary protein separations and relative orientations. We provide exact analytic solutions for cylindrical integral membrane proteins with constant and varying hydrophobic thickness, and develop perturbative analytic solutions for noncylindrical protein shapes. We complement these analytic solutions, and assess their accuracy, by developing both finite element and finite difference numerical solution schemes. We provide error estimates of our numerical solution schemes and systematically assess their convergence properties. Taken together, the work presented here puts into place an analytic and numerical framework which allows calculation of bilayer-mediated elastic interactions between integral membrane proteins for the complicated protein shapes suggested by structural biology and at the small protein separations most relevant for the crowded membrane

  13. Bilayer-thickness-mediated interactions between integral membrane proteins

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kahraman, Osman; Koch, Peter D.; Klug, William S.; Haselwandter, Christoph A.

    2016-04-01

    Hydrophobic thickness mismatch between integral membrane proteins and the surrounding lipid bilayer can produce lipid bilayer thickness deformations. Experiment and theory have shown that protein-induced lipid bilayer thickness deformations can yield energetically favorable bilayer-mediated interactions between integral membrane proteins, and large-scale organization of integral membrane proteins into protein clusters in cell membranes. Within the continuum elasticity theory of membranes, the energy cost of protein-induced bilayer thickness deformations can be captured by considering compression and expansion of the bilayer hydrophobic core, membrane tension, and bilayer bending, resulting in biharmonic equilibrium equations describing the shape of lipid bilayers for a given set of bilayer-protein boundary conditions. Here we develop a combined analytic and numerical methodology for the solution of the equilibrium elastic equations associated with protein-induced lipid bilayer deformations. Our methodology allows accurate prediction of thickness-mediated protein interactions for arbitrary protein symmetries at arbitrary protein separations and relative orientations. We provide exact analytic solutions for cylindrical integral membrane proteins with constant and varying hydrophobic thickness, and develop perturbative analytic solutions for noncylindrical protein shapes. We complement these analytic solutions, and assess their accuracy, by developing both finite element and finite difference numerical solution schemes. We provide error estimates of our numerical solution schemes and systematically assess their convergence properties. Taken together, the work presented here puts into place an analytic and numerical framework which allows calculation of bilayer-mediated elastic interactions between integral membrane proteins for the complicated protein shapes suggested by structural biology and at the small protein separations most relevant for the crowded membrane

  14. Tetra Detector Analysis of Membrane Proteins

    PubMed Central

    Robbins, Rebecca A.; Stroud, Robert M.

    2014-01-01

    Well-characterized membrane protein detergent complexes (PDC) that are pure, homogenous and stable with minimized excess detergent micelles are essential for functional assays and crystallization studies. Procedural steps to measure the mass, size, shape, homogeneity and molecular composition of PDCs and their host detergent micelle using size exclusion chromatography (SEC) with a Viscotek tetra detector array (TDA; absorbance, refractive index, light scattering and viscosity detectors) are presented. The value of starting with a quality PDC sample, the precision and accuracy of the results, and the use of a digital bench top refractometer are emphasized. An alternate and simplified purification and characterization approach using SEC with dual absorbance and refractive index detectors to optimize detergent and lipid concentration while measuring the PDC homogeneity are also described. Applications relative to purification and characterization goals are illustrated as well. PMID:25081744

  15. Detergent-Specific Membrane Protein Crystallization Screens

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wiener, Michael

    2007-01-01

    A suite of reagents has been developed for three-dimensional crystallization of integral membranes present in solution as protein-detergent complexes (PDCs). The compositions of these reagents have been determined in part by proximity to the phase boundaries (lower consolute boundaries) of the detergents present in the PDCs. The acquisition of some of the requisite phase-boundary data and the preliminary design of several of the detergent- specific screens was supported by a NASA contract. At the time of expiration of the contract, a partial set of preliminary screens had been developed. This work has since been extended under non-NASA sponsorship, leading to near completion of a set of 20 to 30 different and unique detergent- specific 96-condition screens.

  16. Towards Co-Evolution of Membrane Proteins and Metabolism

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wilson, Michael A.; Wei, Chenyu; Pohorille, Andrew

    2014-12-01

    Primordial metabolism co-evolved with the earliest membrane peptides to produce more environmentally fit progeny. Here, we map a continuous, evolutionary path that connects nascent biochemistry with simple, membrane-bound oligopeptides, ion channels and, further, membrane proteins capable of energy transduction and utilization of energy for active transport.

  17. Guided reconstitution of membrane protein fragments.

    PubMed

    Cohen, Leah S; Arshava, Boris; Kauffman, Sarah; Mathew, Elizabeth; Fracchiolla, Katrina E; Ding, Fa-Xiang; Dumont, Mark E; Becker, Jeffrey M; Naider, Fred

    2014-01-01

    Structural analysis by NMR of G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) has proven to be extremely challenging. To reduce the number of peaks in the NMR spectra by segmentally labeling a GPCR, we have developed a Guided Reconstitution method that includes the use of charged residues and Cys activation to drive heterodimeric disulfide bond formation. Three different cysteine-activating reagents: 5-5'-dithiobis(2-nitrobenzoic acid) [DTNB], 2,2'-dithiobis(5-nitropyridine) [DTNP], and 4,4'-dipyridyl disulfide [4-PDS] were analyzed to determine their efficiency in heterodimer formation at different pHs. Short peptides representing the N-terminal (NT) and C-terminal (CT) regions of the first extracellular loop (EL1) of Ste2p, the Saccharomyces cerevisiae alpha-factor mating receptor, were activated using these reagents and the efficiencies of activation and rates of heterodimerization were analyzed. Activation of NT peptides with DTNP and 4-PDS resulted in about 60% yield, but heterodimerization was rapid and nearly quantitative. Double transmembrane domain protein fragments were biosynthesized and used in Guided Reconstitution reactions. A 102-residue fragment, 2TM-tail [Ste2p(G31-I120C)], was heterodimerized with CT-EL1-tail(DTNP) at pH 4.6 with a yield of ∼75%. A 132-residue fragment, 2TMlong-tail [Ste2p(M1-I120C)], was expressed in both unlabeled and (15)N-labeled forms and used with a peptide comprising the third transmembrane domain, to generate a 180-residue segmentally labeled 3TM protein that was found to be segmentally labeled using [(15)N,(1)H]-HSQC analysis. Our data indicate that the Guided Reconstitution method would be applicable to the segmental labeling of a membrane protein with 3 transmembrane domains and may prove useful in the preparation of an intact reconstituted GPCR for use in biophysical analysis and structure determination. PMID:23897574

  18. Anomalous diffusion of proteins in sheared lipid membranes.

    PubMed

    Khoshnood, Atefeh; Jalali, Mir Abbas

    2013-09-01

    We use coarse grained molecular dynamics simulations to investigate diffusion properties of sheared lipid membranes with embedded transmembrane proteins. In membranes without proteins, we find normal in-plane diffusion of lipids in all flow conditions. Protein embedded membranes behave quite differently: by imposing a simple shear flow and sliding the monolayers of the membrane over each other, the motion of protein clusters becomes strongly superdiffusive in the shear direction. In such a circumstance, the subdiffusion regime is predominant perpendicular to the flow. We show that superdiffusion is a result of accelerated chaotic motions of protein-lipid complexes within the membrane voids, which are generated by hydrophobic mismatch or the transport of lipids by proteins. PMID:24125292

  19. Expression strategies for structural studies of eukaryotic membrane proteins.

    PubMed

    Lyons, Joseph A; Shahsavar, Azadeh; Paulsen, Peter Aasted; Pedersen, Bjørn Panyella; Nissen, Poul

    2016-06-01

    Integral membrane proteins in eukaryotes are central to various cellular processes and key targets in structural biology, biotechnology and drug development. However, the number of available structures for eukaryotic membrane protein belies their physiological importance. Recently, the number of available eukaryotic membrane protein structures has been steadily increasing due to the development of novel strategies in construct design, expression and structure determination. Here, we examine the major expression systems exploited for eukaryotic membrane proteins. Additionally we strive to tabulate and describe the recent expression strategies in eukaryotic membrane protein structural biology. We find that a majority of targets have been expressed in advanced host systems and modified from their wild-type form with distinct focus on conformation and thermostabilisation. However, strategies for native protein purification should also be considered where possible, particularly in light of the recent advances in single particle cryo electron microscopy. PMID:27362979

  20. Size-dependent protein segregation at membrane interfaces

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schmid, Eva M.; Bakalar, Matthew H.; Choudhuri, Kaushik; Weichsel, Julian; Ann, Hyoung Sook; Geissler, Phillip L.; Dustin, Michael L.; Fletcher, Daniel A.

    2016-07-01

    Membrane interfaces formed at cell-cell junctions are associated with characteristic patterns of membrane proteins whose organization is critical for intracellular signalling. To isolate the role of membrane protein size in pattern formation, we reconstituted model membrane interfaces in vitro using giant unilamellar vesicles decorated with synthetic binding and non-binding proteins. We show that size differences between membrane proteins can drastically alter their organization at membrane interfaces, with as little as a ~5 nm increase in non-binding protein size driving its exclusion from the interface. Combining in vitro measurements with Monte Carlo simulations, we find that non-binding protein exclusion is also influenced by lateral crowding, binding protein affinity, and thermally driven membrane height fluctuations that transiently limit access to the interface. This sensitive and highly effective means of physically segregating proteins has implications for cell-cell contacts such as T-cell immunological synapses (for example, CD45 exclusion) and epithelial cell junctions (for example, E-cadherin enrichment), as well as for protein sorting at intracellular contact points between membrane-bound organelles.

  1. Membrane protein structures without crystals, by single particle electron cryomicroscopy

    PubMed Central

    Vinothkumar, Kutti R

    2015-01-01

    It is an exciting period in membrane protein structural biology with a number of medically important protein structures determined at a rapid pace. However, two major hurdles still remain in the structural biology of membrane proteins. One is the inability to obtain large amounts of protein for crystallization and the other is the failure to get well-diffracting crystals. With single particle electron cryomicroscopy, both these problems can be overcome and high-resolution structures of membrane proteins and other labile protein complexes can be obtained with very little protein and without the need for crystals. In this review, I highlight recent advances in electron microscopy, detectors and software, which have allowed determination of medium to high-resolution structures of membrane proteins and complexes that have been difficult to study by other structural biological techniques. PMID:26435463

  2. Energy-coupled outer membrane transport proteins and regulatory proteins.

    PubMed

    Braun, Volkmar; Endriss, Franziska

    2007-06-01

    FhuA and FecA are two examples of energy-coupled outer membrane import proteins of gram-negative bacteria. FhuA transports iron complexed by the siderophore ferrichrome and serves as a receptor for phages, a toxic bacterial peptide, and a toxic protein. FecA transports diferric dicitrate and regulates transcription of an operon encoding five ferric citrate (Fec) transport genes. Properties of FhuA mutants selected according to the FhuA crystal structure are described. FhuA mutants in the TonB box, the hatch, and the beta-barrel are rather robust. TonB box mutants in FhuA FecA, FepA, Cir, and BtuB are compared; some mutations are suppressed by mutations in TonB. Mutant studies have not revealed a ferrichrome diffusion pathway, and tolerance to mutations in the region linking the TonB box to the hatch does not disclose a mechanism for how energy transfer from the cytoplasmic membrane to FhuA changes the conformation of FhuA such that bound substrates are released, the pore is opened, and substrates enter the periplasm, or how surface loops change their conformation such that TonB-dependent phages bind irreversibly and release their DNA into the cells. The FhuA and FecA crystal structures do not disclose the mechanism of these proteins, but they provide important information for specific functional studies. FecA is also a regulatory protein that transduces a signal from the cell surface into the cytoplasm. The interacting subdomains of the proteins in the FecA --> FecR --> FecI --> RNA polymerase signal transduction pathway resulting in fecABCDE transcription have been determined. Energy-coupled transporters transport not only iron and vitamin B12, but also other substrates of very low abundance such as sugars across the outer membrane; transcription regulation of the transport genes may occur similarly to that of the Fec transport genes. PMID:17370038

  3. Membrane Protein Mobility and Orientation Preserved in Supported Bilayers Created Directly from Cell Plasma Membrane Blebs.

    PubMed

    Richards, Mark J; Hsia, Chih-Yun; Singh, Rohit R; Haider, Huma; Kumpf, Julia; Kawate, Toshimitsu; Daniel, Susan

    2016-03-29

    Membrane protein interactions with lipids are crucial for their native biological behavior, yet traditional characterization methods are often carried out on purified protein in the absence of lipids. We present a simple method to transfer membrane proteins expressed in mammalian cells to an assay-friendly, cushioned, supported lipid bilayer platform using cell blebs as an intermediate. Cell blebs, expressing either GPI-linked yellow fluorescent proteins or neon-green fused transmembrane P2X2 receptors, were induced to rupture on glass surfaces using PEGylated lipid vesicles, which resulted in planar supported membranes with over 50% mobility for multipass transmembrane proteins and over 90% for GPI-linked proteins. Fluorescent proteins were tracked, and their diffusion in supported bilayers characterized, using single molecule tracking and moment scaling spectrum (MSS) analysis. Diffusion was characterized for individual proteins as either free or confined, revealing details of the local lipid membrane heterogeneity surrounding the protein. A particularly useful result of our bilayer formation process is the protein orientation in the supported planar bilayer. For both the GPI-linked and transmembrane proteins used here, an enzymatic assay revealed that protein orientation in the planar bilayer results in the extracellular domains facing toward the bulk, and that the dominant mode of bleb rupture is via the "parachute" mechanism. Mobility, orientation, and preservation of the native lipid environment of the proteins using cell blebs offers advantages over proteoliposome reconstitution or disrupted cell membrane preparations, which necessarily result in significant scrambling of protein orientation and typically immobilized membrane proteins in SLBs. The bleb-based bilayer platform presented here is an important step toward integrating membrane proteomic studies on chip, especially for future studies aimed at understanding fundamental effects of lipid interactions

  4. Membrane interaction of retroviral Gag proteins

    PubMed Central

    Dick, Robert A.; Vogt, Volker M.

    2014-01-01

    Assembly of an infectious retroviral particle relies on multimerization of the Gag polyprotein at the inner leaflet of the plasma membrane. The three domains of Gag common to all retroviruses – MA, CA, and NC – provide the signals for membrane binding, assembly, and viral RNA packaging, respectively. These signals do not function independently of one another. For example, Gag multimerization enhances membrane binding and is more efficient when NC is interacting with RNA. MA binding to the plasma membrane is governed by several principles, including electrostatics, recognition of specific lipid head groups, hydrophobic interactions, and membrane order. HIV-1 uses many of these principles while Rous sarcoma virus (RSV) appears to use fewer. This review describes the principles that govern Gag interactions with membranes, focusing on RSV and HIV-1 Gag. The review also defines lipid and membrane behavior, and discusses the complexities in determining how lipid and membrane behavior impact Gag membrane binding. PMID:24808894

  5. Single molecule techniques for the study of membrane proteins.

    PubMed

    García-Sáez, Ana J; Schwille, Petra

    2007-08-01

    Single molecule techniques promise novel information about the properties and behavior of individual particles, thus enabling access to molecular heterogeneities in biological systems. Their recent developments to accommodate membrane studies have significantly deepened the understanding of membrane proteins. In this short review, we will describe the basics of the three most common single-molecule techniques used on membrane proteins: fluorescence correlation spectroscopy, single particle tracking, and atomic force microscopy. We will discuss the most relevant findings made during the recent years and their contribution to the membrane protein field. PMID:17497147

  6. High-Throughput Baculovirus Expression System for Membrane Protein Production.

    PubMed

    Kalathur, Ravi C; Panganiban, Marinela; Bruni, Renato

    2016-01-01

    The ease of use, robustness, cost-effectiveness, and posttranslational machinery make baculovirus expression system a popular choice for production of eukaryotic membrane proteins. This system can be readily adapted for high-throughput operations. This chapter outlines the techniques and procedures for cloning, transfection, small-scale production, and purification of membrane protein samples in a high-throughput manner. PMID:27485337

  7. Network pattern of residue packing in helical membrane proteins and its application in membrane protein structure prediction.

    PubMed

    Pabuwal, Vagmita; Li, Zhijun

    2008-01-01

    De novo protein structure prediction plays an important role in studies of helical membrane proteins as well as structure-based drug design efforts. Developing an accurate scoring function for protein structure discrimination and validation remains a current challenge. Network approaches based on overall network patterns of residue packing have proven useful in soluble protein structure discrimination. It is thus of interest to apply similar approaches to the studies of residue packing in membrane proteins. In this work, we first carried out such analysis on a set of diverse, non-redundant and high-resolution membrane protein structures. Next, we applied the same approach to three test sets. The first set includes nine structures of membrane proteins with the resolution worse than 2.5 A; the other two sets include a total of 101 G-protein coupled receptor models, constructed using either de novo or homology modeling techniques. Results of analyses indicate the two criteria derived from studying high-resolution membrane protein structures are good indicators of a high-quality native fold and the approach is very effective for discriminating native membrane protein folds from less-native ones. These findings should be of help for the investigation of the fundamental problem of membrane protein structure prediction. PMID:18178566

  8. Negative Ions Enhance Survival of Membrane Protein Complexes.

    PubMed

    Liko, Idlir; Hopper, Jonathan T S; Allison, Timothy M; Benesch, Justin L P; Robinson, Carol V

    2016-06-01

    Membrane protein complexes are commonly introduced to the mass spectrometer solubilized in detergent micelles. The collisional activation used to remove the detergent, however, often causes protein unfolding and dissociation. As in the case for soluble proteins, electrospray in the positive ion mode is most commonly used for the study of membrane proteins. Here we show several distinct advantages of employing the negative ion mode. Negative polarity can yield lower average charge states for membrane proteins solubilized in saccharide detergents, with enhanced peak resolution and reduced adduct formation. Most importantly, we demonstrate that negative ion mode electrospray ionization (ESI) minimizes subunit dissociation in the gas phase, allowing access to biologically relevant oligomeric states. Together, these properties mean that intact membrane protein ions can be generated in a greater range of solubilizing detergents. The formation of negative ions, therefore, greatly expands the possibilities of using mass spectrometry on this intractable class of protein. Graphical Abstract ᅟ. PMID:27106602

  9. A comprehensive strategy to identify stoichiometric membrane protein interactomes

    PubMed Central

    Gokhale, Avanti; Perez-Cornejo, Patricia; Duran, Charity; Hartzell, H. Criss; Faundez, Victor

    2012-01-01

    There are numerous experimental approaches to identify the interaction networks of soluble proteins, but strategies for the identification of membrane protein interactomes remain limited. We discuss in detail the logic of an experimental design that led us to identify the interactome of a membrane protein of complex membrane topology, the calcium activated chloride channel Anoctamin 1/Tmem16a (Ano1). We used covalent chemical stabilizers of protein-protein interactions combined with magnetic bead immuno-affinity chromatography, quantitative SILAC mass-spectrometry and in silico network construction. This strategy led us to define a putative Ano1 interactome from which we selected key components for functional testing. We propose a combination of procedures to narrow down candidate proteins interacting with a membrane protein of interest for further functional studies. PMID:23676845

  10. Negative Ions Enhance Survival of Membrane Protein Complexes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liko, Idlir; Hopper, Jonathan T. S.; Allison, Timothy M.; Benesch, Justin L. P.; Robinson, Carol V.

    2016-06-01

    Membrane protein complexes are commonly introduced to the mass spectrometer solubilized in detergent micelles. The collisional activation used to remove the detergent, however, often causes protein unfolding and dissociation. As in the case for soluble proteins, electrospray in the positive ion mode is most commonly used for the study of membrane proteins. Here we show several distinct advantages of employing the negative ion mode. Negative polarity can yield lower average charge states for membrane proteins solubilized in saccharide detergents, with enhanced peak resolution and reduced adduct formation. Most importantly, we demonstrate that negative ion mode electrospray ionization (ESI) minimizes subunit dissociation in the gas phase, allowing access to biologically relevant oligomeric states. Together, these properties mean that intact membrane protein ions can be generated in a greater range of solubilizing detergents. The formation of negative ions, therefore, greatly expands the possibilities of using mass spectrometry on this intractable class of protein.

  11. Negative Ions Enhance Survival of Membrane Protein Complexes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liko, Idlir; Hopper, Jonathan T. S.; Allison, Timothy M.; Benesch, Justin L. P.; Robinson, Carol V.

    2016-04-01

    Membrane protein complexes are commonly introduced to the mass spectrometer solubilized in detergent micelles. The collisional activation used to remove the detergent, however, often causes protein unfolding and dissociation. As in the case for soluble proteins, electrospray in the positive ion mode is most commonly used for the study of membrane proteins. Here we show several distinct advantages of employing the negative ion mode. Negative polarity can yield lower average charge states for membrane proteins solubilized in saccharide detergents, with enhanced peak resolution and reduced adduct formation. Most importantly, we demonstrate that negative ion mode electrospray ionization (ESI) minimizes subunit dissociation in the gas phase, allowing access to biologically relevant oligomeric states. Together, these properties mean that intact membrane protein ions can be generated in a greater range of solubilizing detergents. The formation of negative ions, therefore, greatly expands the possibilities of using mass spectrometry on this intractable class of protein.

  12. The Hydrophobic Insertion Mechanism of Membrane Curvature Generation by Proteins

    PubMed Central

    Campelo, Felix; McMahon, Harvey T.; Kozlov, Michael M.

    2008-01-01

    A wide spectrum of intracellular processes is dependent on the ability of cells to dynamically regulate membrane shape. Membrane bending by proteins is necessary for the generation of intracellular transport carriers and for the maintenance of otherwise intrinsically unstable regions of high membrane curvature in cell organelles. Understanding the mechanisms by which proteins curve membranes is therefore of primary importance. Here we suggest, for the first time to our knowledge, a quantitative mechanism of lipid membrane bending by hydrophobic or amphipathic rodlike inclusions which simulate amphipathic α-helices—structures shown to sculpt membranes. Considering the lipid monolayer matrix as an anisotropic elastic material, we compute the intramembrane stresses and strains generated by the embedded inclusions, determine the resulting membrane shapes, and the accumulated elastic energy. We characterize the ability of an inclusion to bend membranes by an effective spontaneous curvature, and show that shallow rodlike inclusions are more effective in membrane shaping than are lipids having a high propensity for curvature. Our computations provide experimentally testable predictions on the protein amounts needed to generate intracellular membrane shapes for various insertion depths and membrane thicknesses. We also predict that the ability of N-BAR domains to produce membrane tubules in vivo can be ascribed solely to insertion of their amphipathic helices. PMID:18515373

  13. Composition fluctuations, correlated response, and protein solvation in membranes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McConnell, Harden

    2010-05-01

    Membrane composition fluctuations are deduced from the deuterium NMR relaxation data of S. L. Veatch et al. [Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U.S.A. 104, 17650 (2007)]. A theoretical model for these fluctuations is used to determine the parameters of a correlation function. A fluctuation-response relation is then derived to infer the response of a lipid bilayer membrane to perturbations, such as the presence of a protein. The energy of the correlated response is shown to decrease as a bilayer miscibility critical point is approached from higher temperatures. Near the critical temperature the low energy of the composition response facilitates the lipid solvation of membrane proteins and minimizes lipid-mediated nonspecific protein-protein interactions. This facilitated lipid solvation of membrane proteins may be the basis of reports that at the growth temperature, the lipids of animal cell membranes have compositions such that they are within ˜10° of a miscibility critical point.

  14. X-ray Diffraction from Membrane Protein Nanocrystals

    PubMed Central

    Hunter, M.S.; DePonte, D.P.; Shapiro, D.A.; Kirian, R.A.; Wang, X.; Starodub, D.; Marchesini, S.; Weierstall, U.; Doak, R.B.; Spence, J.C.H.; Fromme, P.

    2011-01-01

    Membrane proteins constitute >30% of the proteins in an average cell, and yet the number of currently known structures of unique membrane proteins is <300. To develop new concepts for membrane protein structure determination, we have explored the serial nanocrystallography method, in which fully hydrated protein nanocrystals are delivered to an x-ray beam within a liquid jet at room temperature. As a model system, we have collected x-ray powder diffraction data from the integral membrane protein Photosystem I, which consists of 36 subunits and 381 cofactors. Data were collected from crystals ranging in size from 100 nm to 2 μm. The results demonstrate that there are membrane protein crystals that contain <100 unit cells (200 total molecules) and that 3D crystals of membrane proteins, which contain <200 molecules, may be suitable for structural investigation. Serial nanocrystallography overcomes the problem of x-ray damage, which is currently one of the major limitations for x-ray structure determination of small crystals. By combining serial nanocrystallography with x-ray free-electron laser sources in the future, it may be possible to produce molecular-resolution electron-density maps using membrane protein crystals that contain only a few hundred or thousand unit cells. PMID:21190672

  15. Protein quality control at the inner nuclear membrane

    PubMed Central

    Khmelinskii, Anton; Blaszczak, Ewa; Pantazopoulou, Marina; Fischer, Bernd; Omnus, Deike J.; Le Dez, Gaëlle; Brossard, Audrey; Gunnarsson, Alexander; Barry, Joseph D.; Meurer, Matthias; Kirrmaier, Daniel; Boone, Charles; Huber, Wolfgang; Rabut, Gwenaël; Ljungdahl, Per O.; Knop, Michael

    2015-01-01

    The nuclear envelope is a double membrane that separates the nucleus from the cytoplasm. The inner nuclear membrane (INM) functions in essential nuclear processes including chromatin organization and regulation of gene expression1. The outer nuclear membrane is continuous with the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) and is the site of membrane protein synthesis. Protein homeostasis in this compartment is ensured by ER-associated protein degradation (ERAD) pathways that in yeast involve the integral membrane E3 ubiquitin ligases Hrd1 and Doa10 operating with the E2 ubiquitin-conjugating enzymes Ubc6 and Ubc72,3. However, little is known regarding protein quality control at the INM. Here we describe a protein degradation pathway at the INM mediated by the Asi complex consisting of the RING domain proteins Asi1 and Asi34. We report that the As complex functions together with the ubiquitin conjugating enzymes Ubc6andUbc7to degrade soluble and integral membrane proteins. Genetic evidence suggest that the Asi ubiquitin ligase defines a pathway distinct from but complementary to ERAD. Using unbiased screening with a novel genome-wide yeast library based on a tandem fluorescent protein timer (tFT)5, we identify more than 50 substrates of the Asi, Hrd1 and Doa10 E3 ubiquity ligases. We show that the Asi ubiquitin ligase is involved in degradation of mislocalised integral membrane proteins, thus acting to maintain and safeguard the identity of the INM. PMID:25519137

  16. Translation Levels Control Multi-Spanning Membrane Protein Expression

    PubMed Central

    Brown, Cecilia; Bostrom, Jenny; Fuh, Germaine; Lee, Chingwei V.; Huang, Arthur; Vandlen, Richard L.; Yansura, Daniel G.

    2012-01-01

    Attempts to express eukaryotic multi-spanning membrane proteins at high-levels have been generally unsuccessful. In order to investigate the cause of this limitation and gain insight into the rate limiting processes involved, we have analyzed the effect of translation levels on the expression of several human membrane proteins in Escherichia coli (E. coli). These results demonstrate that excessive translation initiation rates of membrane proteins cause a block in protein synthesis and ultimately prevent the high-level accumulation of these proteins. Moderate translation rates allow coupling of peptide synthesis and membrane targeting, resulting in a significant increase in protein expression and accumulation over time. The current study evaluates four membrane proteins, CD20 (4-transmembrane (TM) helixes), the G-protein coupled receptors (GPCRs, 7-TMs) RA1c and EG-VEGFR1, and Patched 1 (12-TMs), and demonstrates the critical role of translation initiation rates in the targeting, insertion and folding of integral membrane proteins in the E. coli membrane. PMID:22563408

  17. Role of mitochondrial inner membrane organizing system in protein biogenesis of the mitochondrial outer membrane

    PubMed Central

    Bohnert, Maria; Wenz, Lena-Sophie; Zerbes, Ralf M.; Horvath, Susanne E.; Stroud, David A.; von der Malsburg, Karina; Müller, Judith M.; Oeljeklaus, Silke; Perschil, Inge; Warscheid, Bettina; Chacinska, Agnieszka; Veenhuis, Marten; van der Klei, Ida J.; Daum, Günther; Wiedemann, Nils; Becker, Thomas; Pfanner, Nikolaus; van der Laan, Martin

    2012-01-01

    Mitochondria contain two membranes, the outer membrane and the inner membrane with folded cristae. The mitochondrial inner membrane organizing system (MINOS) is a large protein complex required for maintaining inner membrane architecture. MINOS interacts with both preprotein transport machineries of the outer membrane, the translocase of the outer membrane (TOM) and the sorting and assembly machinery (SAM). It is unknown, however, whether MINOS plays a role in the biogenesis of outer membrane proteins. We have dissected the interaction of MINOS with TOM and SAM and report that MINOS binds to both translocases independently. MINOS binds to the SAM complex via the conserved polypeptide transport–associated domain of Sam50. Mitochondria lacking mitofilin, the large core subunit of MINOS, are impaired in the biogenesis of β-barrel proteins of the outer membrane, whereas mutant mitochondria lacking any of the other five MINOS subunits import β-barrel proteins in a manner similar to wild-type mitochondria. We show that mitofilin is required at an early stage of β-barrel biogenesis that includes the initial translocation through the TOM complex. We conclude that MINOS interacts with TOM and SAM independently and that the core subunit mitofilin is involved in biogenesis of outer membrane β-barrel proteins. PMID:22918945

  18. Curvature Forces in Membrane Lipid-Protein Interactions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brown, Michael F.

    2012-02-01

    Membrane protein conformational changes, folding, and stability may all involve elastic deformation of the bilayer. Non-specific properties of the bilayer play a significant role in modulating protein conformational energetics. A flexible-surface model (FSM) describes the balance of curvature and hydrophobic forces in lipid-protein interactions. The FSM describes elastic coupling of membrane lipids to integral membrane proteins. Curvature and hydrophobic matching to the lipid bilayer entails a stress field that explains membrane protein stability. Rhodopsin provides an important example, where solid-state NMR and FTIR spectroscopy characterize the energy landscape of the dynamically activated receptor. Time-resolved UV-visible and FTIR spectroscopic studies show how membrane lipids affect the metarhodopsin equilibrium due to non-specific material properties. Influences of bilayer thickness, nonlamellar-forming lipids, detergents, and osmotic stress on rhodopsin function are all explained by the new biomembrane model. By contrast, the older fluid-mosaic model fails to account for such effects on membrane protein activity. According to the FSM proteins are regulated by membrane lipids whose spontaneous curvature most closely matches the activated state within the lipid membrane.

  19. Prediction of lipid-binding regions in cytoplasmic and extracellular loops of membrane proteins as exemplified by protein translocation membrane proteins.

    PubMed

    Keller, Rob C A

    2013-01-01

    The presence of possible lipid-binding regions in the cytoplasmic or extracellular loops of membrane proteins with an emphasis on protein translocation membrane proteins was investigated in this study using bioinformatics. Recent developments in approaches recognizing lipid-binding regions in proteins were found to be promising. In this study a total bioinformatics approach specialized in identifying lipid-binding helical regions in proteins was explored. Two features of the protein translocation membrane proteins, the position of the transmembrane regions and the identification of additional lipid-binding regions, were analyzed. A number of well-studied protein translocation membrane protein structures were checked in order to demonstrate the predictive value of the bioinformatics approach. Furthermore, the results demonstrated that lipid-binding regions in the cytoplasmic and extracellular loops in protein translocation membrane proteins can be predicted, and it is proposed that the interaction of these regions with phospholipids is important for proper functioning during protein translocation. PMID:22961045

  20. Membrane-Protein Crystallography and Potentiality for Drug Design

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yamashita, Atsuko

    Structure-based drug design for membrane proteins is far behind that for soluble proteins due to difficulty in crystallographic structure determination, despite the fact that about 60% of FDA-approved drugs target membrane proteins located at the cell surface. Stable homologs for a membrane protein of interest, such as prokaryotic neurotransmitter transporter homolog LeuT, might enable cooperative analyses by crystallography and functional assays, provide useful information for functional mechanisms, and thus serve as important probes for drug design based on mechanisms as well as structures.

  1. BPROMPT: A consensus server for membrane protein prediction.

    PubMed

    Taylor, Paul D; Attwood, Teresa K; Flower, Darren R

    2003-07-01

    Protein structure prediction is a cornerstone of bioinformatics research. Membrane proteins require their own prediction methods due to their intrinsically different composition. A variety of tools exist for topology prediction of membrane proteins, many of them available on the Internet. The server described in this paper, BPROMPT (Bayesian PRediction Of Membrane Protein Topology), uses a Bayesian Belief Network to combine the results of other prediction methods, providing a more accurate consensus prediction. Topology predictions with accuracies of 70% for prokaryotes and 53% for eukaryotes were achieved. BPROMPT can be accessed at http://www.jenner.ac.uk/BPROMPT. PMID:12824397

  2. The Protein 4.1 family: hub proteins in animals for organizing membrane proteins.

    PubMed

    Baines, Anthony J; Lu, Hui-Chun; Bennett, Pauline M

    2014-02-01

    Proteins of the 4.1 family are characteristic of eumetazoan organisms. Invertebrates contain single 4.1 genes and the Drosophila model suggests that 4.1 is essential for animal life. Vertebrates have four paralogues, known as 4.1R, 4.1N, 4.1G and 4.1B, which are additionally duplicated in the ray-finned fish. Protein 4.1R was the first to be discovered: it is a major mammalian erythrocyte cytoskeletal protein, essential to the mechanochemical properties of red cell membranes because it promotes the interaction between spectrin and actin in the membrane cytoskeleton. 4.1R also binds certain phospholipids and is required for the stable cell surface accumulation of a number of erythrocyte transmembrane proteins that span multiple functional classes; these include cell adhesion molecules, transporters and a chemokine receptor. The vertebrate 4.1 proteins are expressed in most tissues, and they are required for the correct cell surface accumulation of a very wide variety of membrane proteins including G-Protein coupled receptors, voltage-gated and ligand-gated channels, as well as the classes identified in erythrocytes. Indeed, such large numbers of protein interactions have been mapped for mammalian 4.1 proteins, most especially 4.1R, that it appears that they can act as hubs for membrane protein organization. The range of critical interactions of 4.1 proteins is reflected in disease relationships that include hereditary anaemias, tumour suppression, control of heartbeat and nervous system function. The 4.1 proteins are defined by their domain structure: apart from the spectrin/actin-binding domain they have FERM and FERM-adjacent domains and a unique C-terminal domain. Both the FERM and C-terminal domains can bind transmembrane proteins, thus they have the potential to be cross-linkers for membrane proteins. The activity of the FERM domain is subject to multiple modes of regulation via binding of regulatory ligands, phosphorylation of the FERM associated domain and

  3. A Usual G-Protein-Coupled Receptor in Unusual Membranes.

    PubMed

    Chawla, Udeep; Jiang, Yunjiang; Zheng, Wan; Kuang, Liangju; Perera, Suchithranga M D C; Pitman, Michael C; Brown, Michael F; Liang, Hongjun

    2016-01-11

    G-protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) are the largest family of membrane-bound receptors and constitute about 50% of all known drug targets. They offer great potential for membrane protein nanotechnologies. We report here a charge-interaction-directed reconstitution mechanism that induces spontaneous insertion of bovine rhodopsin, the eukaryotic GPCR, into both lipid- and polymer-based artificial membranes. We reveal a new allosteric mode of rhodopsin activation incurred by the non-biological membranes: the cationic membrane drives a transition from the inactive MI to the activated MII state in the absence of high [H(+)] or negative spontaneous curvature. We attribute this activation to the attractive charge interaction between the membrane surface and the deprotonated Glu134 residue of the rhodopsin-conserved ERY sequence motif that helps break the cytoplasmic "ionic lock". This study unveils a novel design concept of non-biological membranes to reconstitute and harness GPCR functions in synthetic systems. PMID:26633591

  4. Overcoming bottlenecks in the membrane protein structural biology pipeline.

    PubMed

    Hardy, David; Bill, Roslyn M; Jawhari, Anass; Rothnie, Alice J

    2016-06-15

    Membrane proteins account for a third of the eukaryotic proteome, but are greatly under-represented in the Protein Data Bank. Unfortunately, recent technological advances in X-ray crystallography and EM cannot account for the poor solubility and stability of membrane protein samples. A limitation of conventional detergent-based methods is that detergent molecules destabilize membrane proteins, leading to their aggregation. The use of orthologues, mutants and fusion tags has helped improve protein stability, but at the expense of not working with the sequence of interest. Novel detergents such as glucose neopentyl glycol (GNG), maltose neopentyl glycol (MNG) and calixarene-based detergents can improve protein stability without compromising their solubilizing properties. Styrene maleic acid lipid particles (SMALPs) focus on retaining the native lipid bilayer of a membrane protein during purification and biophysical analysis. Overcoming bottlenecks in the membrane protein structural biology pipeline, primarily by maintaining protein stability, will facilitate the elucidation of many more membrane protein structures in the near future. PMID:27284049

  5. Membrane proteins of Mycoplasma bovis and their role in pathogenesis.

    PubMed

    Adamu, James Y; Wawegama, Nadeeka K; Browning, Glenn F; Markham, Philip F

    2013-10-01

    Mycoplasma membrane proteins influence cell shape, cell division, motility and adhesion to host cells, and are thought to be integrally involved in the pathogenesis of mycoplasmoses. Many of the membrane proteins predicted from mycoplasma genome sequences remain hypothetical, as their presence in cellular protein preparations is yet to be established experimentally. Recent genome sequences of several strains of Mycoplasma bovis have provided further insight into the potential role of the membrane proteins of this pathogen in colonisation and infection. This review highlights recent advances in knowledge about the influence of M. bovis membrane proteins on the pathogenesis of infection with this species and identifies future research directions for enhancing our understanding of the role of these proteins. PMID:23810376

  6. Phenotypic effects of membrane protein overexpression in Saccharomyces cerevisiae

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Melén, Karin; Blomberg, Anders; von Heijne, Gunnar

    2006-07-01

    Large-scale protein overexpression phenotype screens provide an important complement to the more common gene knockout screens. Here, we have targeted the so far poorly understood Saccharomyces cerevisiae membrane proteome and report growth phenotypes for a strain collection overexpressing 600 C-terminally tagged integral membrane proteins grown both under normal and three different stress conditions. Although overexpression of most membrane proteins reduce the growth rate in synthetic defined medium, we identify a large number of proteins that, when overexpressed, confer specific resistance to various stress conditions. Our data suggest that regulation of glycosylphosphatidylinositol anchor biosynthesis and the Na+/K+ homeostasis system constitute major downstream targets of the yeast PKA/RAS pathway and point to a possible connection between the early secretory pathway and the cells' response to oxidative stress. We also have quantified the expression levels for >550 membrane proteins, facilitating the choice of well expressing proteins for future functional and structural studies. caffeine | paraquat | salt tolerance | yeast

  7. Glycosomal membrane proteins and lipids from Leishmania mexicana.

    PubMed

    Quiñones, Wilfredo; Cáceres, Ana J; Ruiz, Maria Tibisay; Concepción, Juan Luis

    2015-04-01

    Constituents of the glycosomal membrane from Leishmania mexicana should play a critical role in the coordination of metabolic processes occurring in the cytosol and those compartmentalized within glycosomes. We have made an inventory of glycosomal membrane-associated proteins using approaches specific for enriching both integral and peripheral membrane proteins. Surprisingly, 70% of the proteins were recovered in the hydrophobic fraction of membranes solubilized with Triton X-114, while 20% were present in the soluble fraction obtained upon treatment with Na2CO3. 14 major polypeptides, ranging in molecular weight from 65 to 16 kDa, were found to be associated with the membrane, nine of them behaving as integral membrane proteins. Assessment of their topology in the membrane indicated that the polypeptides of 56, 50, 46 and 32 kDa have no domains exposed to the cytosol. The 50 kDa protein is the most abundant one of the glycosomal membrane, where it is peripherically located at the matrix face. The major phospholipids of glycosomal membranes are phosphatidyl-ethanolamine, phosphatidyl-choline and phosphatidyl-serine, with smaller proportions of sphingomyelin and phosphatidyl-inositol. The sterols found were of 5-dehydroepisterol, ergosta-5,7,24(24(1))-trien-3β-ol, and also their precursors, consistent with the notion that these organelles are involved in de novo biosynthesis of sterols in trypanosomatids. PMID:25499533

  8. Concentrating membrane proteins using asymmetric traps and AC electric fields.

    PubMed

    Cheetham, Matthew R; Bramble, Jonathan P; McMillan, Duncan G G; Krzeminski, Lukasz; Han, Xiaojun; Johnson, Benjamin R G; Bushby, Richard J; Olmsted, Peter D; Jeuken, Lars J C; Marritt, Sophie J; Butt, Julea N; Evans, Stephen D

    2011-05-01

    Membrane proteins are key components of the plasma membrane and are responsible for control of chemical ionic gradients, metabolite and nutrient transfer, and signal transduction between the interior of cells and the external environment. Of the genes in the human genome, 30% code for membrane proteins (Krogh et al. J. Mol. Biol.2001, 305, 567). Furthermore, many FDA-approved drugs target such proteins (Overington et al. Nat. Rev. Drug Discovery 2006, 5, 993). However, the structure-function relationships of these are notably sparse because of difficulties in their purification and handling outside of their membranous environment. Methods that permit the manipulation of membrane components while they are still in the membrane would find widespread application in separation, purification, and eventual structure-function determination of these species (Poo et al. Nature 1977, 265, 602). Here we show that asymmetrically patterned supported lipid bilayers in combination with AC electric fields can lead to efficient manipulation of charged components. We demonstrate the concentration and trapping of such components through the use of a "nested trap" and show that this method is capable of yielding an approximately 30-fold increase in the average protein concentration. Upon removal of the field, the material remains trapped for several hours as a result of topographically restricted diffusion. Our results indicate that this method can be used for concentrating and trapping charged membrane components while they are still within their membranous environment. We anticipate that our approach could find widespread application in the manipulation and study of membrane proteins. PMID:21476549

  9. Lipidic cubic phase injector facilitates membrane protein serial femtosecond crystallography

    PubMed Central

    Weierstall, Uwe; James, Daniel; Wang, Chong; White, Thomas A.; Wang, Dingjie; Liu, Wei; Spence, John C.H.; Doak, R. Bruce; Nelson, Garrett; Fromme, Petra; Fromme, Raimund; Grotjohann, Ingo; Kupitz, Christopher; Zatsepin, Nadia A.; Liu, Haiguang; Basu, Shibom; Wacker, Daniel; Han, Gye Won; Katritch, Vsevolod; Boutet, Sébastien; Messerschmidt, Marc; Williams, Garth J.; Koglin, Jason E.; Seibert, M. Marvin; Klinker, Markus; Gati, Cornelius; Shoeman, Robert L.; Barty, Anton; Chapman, Henry N.; Kirian, Richard A.; Beyerlein, Kenneth R.; Stevens, Raymond C.; Li, Dianfan; Shah, Syed T.A.; Howe, Nicole; Caffrey, Martin; Cherezov, Vadim

    2014-01-01

    Lipidic cubic phase (LCP) crystallization has proven successful for high-resolution structure determination of challenging membrane proteins. Here we present a technique for extruding gel-like LCP with embedded membrane protein microcrystals, providing a continuously-renewed source of material for serial femtosecond crystallography. Data collected from sub-10 μm-sized crystals produced with less than 0.5 mg of purified protein yield structural insights regarding cyclopamine binding to the Smoothened receptor. PMID:24525480

  10. Methods for Mapping of Interaction Networks Involving Membrane Proteins

    SciTech Connect

    Hooker, Brian S.; Bigelow, Diana J.; Lin, Chiann Tso

    2007-11-23

    Numerous approaches have been taken to study protein interactions, such as tagged protein complex isolation followed by mass spectrometry, yeast two-hybrid methods, fluorescence resonance energy transfer, surface plasmon resonance, site-directed mutagenesis, and crystallography. Membrane protein interactions pose significant challenges due to the need to solubilize membranes without disrupting protein-protein interactions. Traditionally, analysis of isolated protein complexes by high-resolution 2D gel electrophoresis has been the main method used to obtain an overall picture of proteome constituents and interactions. However, this method is time consuming, labor intensive, detects only abundant proteins and is not suitable for the coverage required to elucidate large interaction networks. In this review, we discuss the application of various methods to elucidate interactions involving membrane proteins. These techniques include methods for the direct isolation of single complexes or interactors as well as methods for characterization of entire subcellular and cellular interactomes.

  11. Virulent strain associated outer membrane proteins of Borrelia burgdorferi.

    PubMed Central

    Skare, J T; Shang, E S; Foley, D M; Blanco, D R; Champion, C I; Mirzabekov, T; Sokolov, Y; Kagan, B L; Miller, J N; Lovett, M A

    1995-01-01

    We have isolated and purified outer membrane vesicles (OMV) from Borrelia burgdorferi strain B31 based on methods developed for isolation of Treponema pallidum OMV. Purified OMV exhibited distinct porin activities with conductances of 0.6 and 12.6 nano-Siemen and had no detectable beta-NADH oxidase activity indicating their outer membrane origin and their lack of inner membrane contamination, respectively. Hydrophobic proteins were identified by phase partitioning with Triton X-114. Most of these hydrophobic membrane proteins were not acylated, suggesting that they are outer membrane-spanning proteins. Identification of palmitate-labeled lipoproteins revealed that several were enriched in the OMV, several were enriched in the protoplasmic cylinder inner membrane fraction, and others were found exclusively associated with the inner membrane. The protein composition of OMV changed significantly with successive in vitro cultivation of strain B31. Using antiserum with specificity for virulent strain B31, we identified OMV antigens on the surface of the spirochete and identified proteins whose presence in OMV could be correlated with virulence and protective immunity in the rabbit Lyme disease model. These virulent strain associated outer membrane-spanning proteins may provide new insight into the pathogenesis of Lyme disease. Images PMID:7593626

  12. The Origin and Early Evolution of Membrane Proteins

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Pohorille, Andrew; Schweighofer, Karl; Wilson, Michael A.

    2005-01-01

    Membrane proteins mediate functions that are essential to all cells. These functions include transport of ions, nutrients and waste products across cell walls, capture of energy and its transduction into the form usable in chemical reactions, transmission of environmental signals to the interior of the cell, cellular growth and cell volume regulation. In the absence of membrane proteins, ancestors of cell (protocells), would have had only very limited capabilities to communicate with their environment. Thus, it is not surprising that membrane proteins are quite common even in simplest prokaryotic cells. Considering that contemporary membrane channels are large and complex, both structurally and functionally, a question arises how their presumably much simpler ancestors could have emerged, perform functions and diversify in early protobiological evolution. Remarkably, despite their overall complexity, structural motifs in membrane proteins are quite simple, with a-helices being most common. This suggests that these proteins might have evolved from simple building blocks. To explain how these blocks could have organized into functional structures, we performed large-scale, accurate computer simulations of folding peptides at a water-membrane interface, their insertion into the membrane, self-assembly into higher-order structures and function. The results of these simulations, combined with analysis of structural and functional experimental data led to the first integrated view of the origin and early evolution of membrane proteins.

  13. Polyclonal Antibody Production for Membrane Proteins via Genetic Immunization

    PubMed Central

    Hansen, Debra T.; Robida, Mark D.; Craciunescu, Felicia M.; Loskutov, Andrey V.; Dörner, Katerina; Rodenberry, John-Charles; Wang, Xiao; Olson, Tien L.; Patel, Hetal; Fromme, Petra; Sykes, Kathryn F.

    2016-01-01

    Antibodies are essential for structural determinations and functional studies of membrane proteins, but antibody generation is limited by the availability of properly-folded and purified antigen. We describe the first application of genetic immunization to a structurally diverse set of membrane proteins to show that immunization of mice with DNA alone produced antibodies against 71% (n = 17) of the bacterial and viral targets. Antibody production correlated with prior reports of target immunogenicity in host organisms, underscoring the efficiency of this DNA-gold micronanoplex approach. To generate each antigen for antibody characterization, we also developed a simple in vitro membrane protein expression and capture method. Antibody specificity was demonstrated upon identifying, for the first time, membrane-directed heterologous expression of the native sequences of the FopA and FTT1525 virulence determinants from the select agent Francisella tularensis SCHU S4. These approaches will accelerate future structural and functional investigations of therapeutically-relevant membrane proteins. PMID:26908053

  14. MALDI Tissue Profiling of Integral Membrane Proteins from Ocular Tissues

    PubMed Central

    Thibault, Danielle B.; Gillam, Christopher J.; Grey, Angus C.; Han, Jun; Schey, Kevin L.

    2008-01-01

    MALDI tissue profiling and imaging have become valuable tools for rapid, direct analysis of tissues to investigate spatial distributions of proteins, potentially leading to an enhanced understanding of the molecular basis of disease. Sample preparation methods developed to date for these techniques produce protein expression profiles from predominantly hydrophilic, soluble proteins. The ability to obtain information about the spatial distribution of integral membrane proteins is critical to more fully understand their role in physiological processes, including transport, adhesion, and signaling. In this communication, a sample preparation method for direct tissue profiling of integral membrane proteins is presented. Spatially resolved profiles for the abundant lens membrane proteins aquaporin 0 (AQP0) and MP20, and the retinal membrane protein opsin, were obtained using this method. MALDI tissue profiling results were validated by analysis of dissected tissue prepared by traditional membrane protein processing methods. Furthermore, direct tissue profiling of lens membrane proteins revealed aged related post-translational modifications, as well as a novel modification that had not been detected using conventional tissue homogenization methods. PMID:18396059

  15. Dynamic Nuclear Polarization of membrane proteins: covalently bound spin-labels at protein-protein interfaces

    PubMed Central

    Wylie, Benjamin J; Dzikovski, Boris G.; Pawsey, Shane; Caporini, Marc; Rosay, Melanie; Freed, Jack H.; McDermott, Ann E.

    2016-01-01

    We demonstrate that dynamic nuclear polarization (DNP) of membrane proteins in lipid bilayers may be achieved using a novel polarizing agent: pairs of spin labels covalently bound to a protein of interest interacting at an intermolecular interaction surface. For gramicidin A, nitroxide tags attached to the N-terminal intermolecular interface region become proximal only when bimolecular channels forms in the membrane. We obtained signal enhancements of 6-fold for the dimeric protein. The enhancement affect was comparable to that of a doubly tagged sample of gramicidin C, with intramolecular spin pairs. This approach could be a powerful and selective means for signal enhancement in membrane proteins, and for recognizing intermolecular interfaces. PMID:25828256

  16. Thermodynamics of protein driven self assembly in membranes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Natesan, Ramakrishnan; Tourdot, Richard; Bradley, Ryan; Radhakrishnan, Ravi

    2013-03-01

    Recent experimental evidences strongly point to the role of proteins and other membrane binding macromolecules in reshaping biological membranes, at length scales of the molecule and the structure enclosed by the membrane. In this work, we investigate the interplay between the membrane curvature induced at the molecular scale, mainly due to peripheral membrane proteins, and the resulting membrane morphologies, of varying complexity, observed at the mesoscale. The biological membrane, in our approach, is represented by a dynamically triangulated surface while the proteins are modeled as curvature fields on the membrane, which can either be isotropic or anisotropic. Thermal undulations in the membrane and cooperativity in the curvature field, due to the stabilization of a nematic phase, drives the membrane into conformations that resembles those in experiments in vivo and vitro. The stability of these structures are examined by two approaches to compute the free energy of the system: (i) Widom insertion technique to compute excess chemical potentials and (ii) thermodynamic integration using the Kirkwood coupling parameter to compute absolute free energies. Building on these methods, we propose a hybrid scheeme that couples both the approaches for computing free energies.

  17. Membrane Protein Production in the Yeast, S. cerevisiae.

    PubMed

    Cartwright, Stephanie P; Mikaliunaite, Lina; Bill, Roslyn M

    2016-01-01

    The first crystal structures of recombinant mammalian membrane proteins were solved in 2005 using protein that had been produced in yeast cells. One of these, the rabbit Ca(2+)-ATPase SERCA1a, was synthesized in Saccharomyces cerevisiae. All host systems have their specific advantages and disadvantages, but yeast has remained a consistently popular choice in the eukaryotic membrane protein field because it is quick, easy and cheap to culture, whilst being able to post-translationally process eukaryotic membrane proteins. Very recent structures of recombinant membrane proteins produced in S. cerevisiae include those of the Arabidopsis thaliana NRT1.1 nitrate transporter and the fungal plant pathogen lipid scramblase, TMEM16. This chapter provides an overview of the methodological approaches underpinning these successes. PMID:27485327

  18. Membrane proteins of dense lysosomes from Chinese hamster ovary cells

    SciTech Connect

    Chance, S.C.

    1987-01-01

    In this work membrane proteins from lysosomes were studied in order to gain more information on the biogenesis and intracellular sorting of this class of membrane proteins. Membrane proteins were isolated from a purified population of lysosomes. These proteins were then examined for various co- and post-translational modifications which could serve as potential intracellular sorting signals. Biochemical analysis using marker enzymatic activities detected no plasma membrane, Golgi, endoplasmic reticulum, peroxisomes, mitochondria, or cytosol. Analysis after incorporation of ({sup 3}H)thymidine or ({sup 3}H)uridine detected no nuclei or ribosomes. A fraction containing integral membrane proteins was obtained from the dense lysosomes by extraction with Triton X-114. Twenty-three polypeptides which incorporated both ({sup 35}S)methionine and ({sup 3}H)leucine were detected by SDS PAGE in this membrane fraction, and ranged in molecular weight from 30-130 kDa. After incorporation by cells of various radioactive metabolic precursors, the membrane fraction from dense lysosomes was examined and was found to be enriched in mannose, galactose, fucose, palmitate, myristate, and sulfate, but was depleted in phosphate. The membrane fraction from dense lysosomes was then analyzed by SDS PAGE to determine the apparent molecular weights of modified polypepties.

  19. The electrical interplay between proteins and lipids in membranes.

    PubMed

    Richens, Joanna L; Lane, Jordan S; Bramble, Jonathan P; O'Shea, Paul

    2015-09-01

    All molecular interactions that are relevant to cellular and molecular structures are electrical in nature but manifest in a rich variety of forms that each has its own range and influences on the net effect of how molecular species interact. This article outlines how electrical interactions between the protein and lipid membrane components underlie many of the activities of membrane function. Particular emphasis is placed on spatially localised behaviour in membranes involving modulation of protein activity and microdomain structure. The interactions between membrane lipids and membrane proteins together with their role within cell biology represent an enormous body of work. Broad conclusions are not easy given the complexities of the various systems and even consensus with model membrane systems containing two or three lipid types is difficult. By defining two types of broad lipid-protein interaction, respectively Type I as specific and Type II as more non-specific and focussing on the electrical interactions mostly in the extra-membrane regions it is possible to assemble broad rules or a consensus of the dominant features of the interplay between these two fundamentally important classes of membrane component. This article is part of a special issue entitled: Lipid-protein interactions. PMID:25817548

  20. Structural Aspects of Bacterial Outer Membrane Protein Assembly.

    PubMed

    Calmettes, Charles; Judd, Andrew; Moraes, Trevor F

    2015-01-01

    The outer membrane of Gram-negative bacteria is predominantly populated by β-Barrel proteins and lipid anchored proteins that serve a variety of biological functions. The proper folding and assembly of these proteins is essential for bacterial viability and often plays a critical role in virulence and pathogenesis. The β-barrel assembly machinery (Bam) complex is responsible for the proper assembly of β-barrels into the outer membrane of Gram-negative bacteria, whereas the localization of lipoproteins (Lol) system is required for proper targeting of lipoproteins to the outer membrane. PMID:26621472

  1. Structures and Mechanisms of Viral Membrane Fusion Proteins

    PubMed Central

    White, Judith M.; Delos, Sue E.; Brecher, Matthew; Schornberg, Kathryn

    2009-01-01

    Recent work has identified three distinct classes of viral membrane fusion proteins based on structural criteria. In addition, there are at least four distinct mechanisms by which viral fusion proteins can be triggered to undergo fusion-inducing conformational changes. Viral fusion proteins also contain different types of fusion peptides and vary in their reliance on accessory proteins. These differing features combine to yield a rich diversity of fusion proteins. Yet despite this staggering diversity, all characterized viral fusion proteins convert from a fusion-competent state (dimers or trimers, depending on the class) to a membrane-embedded homotrimeric prehairpin, and then to a trimer-of-hairpins that brings the fusion peptide, attached to the target membrane, and the transmembrane domain, attached to the viral membrane, into close proximity thereby facilitating the union of viral and target membranes. During these conformational conversions, the fusion proteins induce membranes to progress through stages of close apposition, hemifusion, and then the formation of small, and finally large, fusion pores. Clearly, highly divergent proteins have converged on the same overall strategy to mediate fusion, an essential step in the life cycle of every enveloped virus. PMID:18568847

  2. Membranes Do Not Tell Proteins How To Fold.

    PubMed

    Popot, Jean-Luc; Engelman, Donald M

    2016-01-12

    Which properties of the membrane environment are essential for the folding and oligomerization of transmembrane proteins? Because the lipids that surround membrane proteins in situ spontaneously organize into bilayers, it may seem intuitive that interactions with the bilayer provide both hydrophobic and topological constraints that help the protein to achieve a stable and functional three-dimensional structure. However, one may wonder whether folding is actually driven by the membrane environment or whether the folded state just reflects an adaptation of integral proteins to the medium in which they function. Also, apart from the overall transmembrane orientation, might the asymmetry inherent in biosynthesis processes cause proteins to fold to out-of-equilibrium, metastable topologies? Which of the features of a bilayer are essential for membrane protein folding, and which are not? To which extent do translocons dictate transmembrane topologies? Recent data show that many membrane proteins fold and oligomerize very efficiently in media that bear little similarity to a membrane, casting doubt on the essentiality of many bilayer constraints. In the following discussion, we argue that some of the features of bilayers may contribute to protein folding, stability and regulation, but they are not required for the basic three-dimensional structure to be achieved. This idea, if correct, would imply that evolution has steered membrane proteins toward an accommodation to biosynthetic pathways and a good fit into their environment, but that their folding is not driven by the latter or dictated by insertion apparatuses. In other words, the three-dimensional structure of membrane proteins is essentially determined by intramolecular interactions and not by bilayer constraints and insertion pathways. Implications are discussed. PMID:26649989

  3. TMBETA-NET: discrimination and prediction of membrane spanning beta-strands in outer membrane proteins.

    PubMed

    Gromiha, M Michael; Ahmad, Shandar; Suwa, Makiko

    2005-07-01

    We have developed a web-server, TMBETA-NET for discriminating outer membrane proteins and predicting their membrane spanning beta-strand segments. The amino acid compositions of globular and outer membrane proteins have been systematically analyzed and a statistical method has been proposed for discriminating outer membrane proteins. The prediction of membrane spanning segments is mainly based on feed forward neural network and refined with beta-strand length. Our program takes the amino acid sequence as input and displays the type of the protein along with membrane-spanning beta-strand segments as a stretch of highlighted amino acid residues. Further, the probability of residues to be in transmembrane beta-strand has been provided with a coloring scheme. We observed that outer membrane proteins were discriminated with an accuracy of 89% and their membrane spanning beta-strand segments at an accuracy of 73% just from amino acid sequence information. The prediction server is available at http://psfs.cbrc.jp/tmbeta-net/. PMID:15980447

  4. Protein-driven membrane stresses in fusion and fission

    PubMed Central

    Kozlov, Michael M.; McMahon, Harvey T.; Chernomordik, Leonid V.

    2013-01-01

    Cellular membranes undergo continuous remodeling. Exocytosis and endocytosis, mitochondrial fusion and fission, entry of enveloped viruses into host cellsand release of the newly assembled virions, cell-to-cell fusion and cell division, and budding and fusion of transport carriers all proceed via topologically similar, but oppositely ordered, membrane rearrangements. The biophysical similarities and differences between membrane fusion and fission become more evident if we disregard the accompanying biological processes and consider only remodeling of the lipid bilayer. The forces that determine the bilayer propensity to undergo fusion or fission come from proteins and inmost cases from membrane-bound proteins. In this review, we consider the mechanistic principles underlying the fusion and fission reactions and discuss the current hypotheses on how specific proteins act in the two types of membrane remodeling. PMID:20638285

  5. Association of Influenza Virus Proteins with Membrane Rafts

    PubMed Central

    Veit, Michael; Thaa, Bastian

    2011-01-01

    Assembly and budding of influenza virus proceeds in the viral budozone, a domain in the plasma membrane with characteristics of cholesterol/sphingolipid-rich membrane rafts. The viral transmembrane glycoproteins hemagglutinin (HA) and neuraminidase (NA) are intrinsically targeted to these domains, while M2 is seemingly targeted to the edge of the budozone. Virus assembly is orchestrated by the matrix protein M1, binding to all viral components and the membrane. Budding progresses by protein- and lipid-mediated membrane bending and particle scission probably mediated by M2. Here, we summarize the experimental evidence for this model with emphasis on the raft-targeting features of HA, NA, and M2 and review the functional importance of raft domains for viral protein transport, assembly and budding, environmental stability, and membrane fusion. PMID:22312341

  6. Membrane protein biosensing with plasmonic nanopore arrays and pore-spanning lipid membranes

    PubMed Central

    Im, Hyungsoon; Wittenberg, Nathan J.; Lesuffleur, Antoine; Lindquist, Nathan C.; Oh, Sang-Hyun

    2010-01-01

    Integration of solid-state biosensors and lipid bilayer membranes is important for membrane protein research and drug discovery. In these sensors, it is critical that the solid-state sensing material does not have adverse effects on the conformation or functionality of membrane-bound molecules. In this work, pore-spanning lipid membranes are formed over an array of periodic nanopores in free-standing gold films for surface plasmon resonance (SPR) kinetic binding assays. The ability to perform kinetic assays with a transmembrane protein is demonstrated with α-hemolysin (α-HL). The incorporation of α-HL into the membrane followed by specific antibody binding (anti-α-HL) red-shifts the plasmon resonance of the gold nanopore array, which is optically monitored in real time. Subsequent fluorescence imaging reveals that the antibodies primarily bind in nanopore regions, indicating that α-HL incorporation preferentially occurs into areas of pore-spanning lipid membranes. PMID:21218136

  7. Architecture and Function of Mechanosensitive Membrane Protein Lattices

    PubMed Central

    Kahraman, Osman; Koch, Peter D.; Klug, William S.; Haselwandter, Christoph A.

    2016-01-01

    Experiments have revealed that membrane proteins can form two-dimensional clusters with regular translational and orientational protein arrangements, which may allow cells to modulate protein function. However, the physical mechanisms yielding supramolecular organization and collective function of membrane proteins remain largely unknown. Here we show that bilayer-mediated elastic interactions between membrane proteins can yield regular and distinctive lattice architectures of protein clusters, and may provide a link between lattice architecture and lattice function. Using the mechanosensitive channel of large conductance (MscL) as a model system, we obtain relations between the shape of MscL and the supramolecular architecture of MscL lattices. We predict that the tetrameric and pentameric MscL symmetries observed in previous structural studies yield distinct lattice architectures of MscL clusters and that, in turn, these distinct MscL lattice architectures yield distinct lattice activation barriers. Our results suggest general physical mechanisms linking protein symmetry, the lattice architecture of membrane protein clusters, and the collective function of membrane protein lattices. PMID:26771082

  8. Efficient cellular solid-state NMR of membrane proteins by targeted protein labeling.

    PubMed

    Baker, Lindsay A; Daniëls, Mark; van der Cruijsen, Elwin A W; Folkers, Gert E; Baldus, Marc

    2015-06-01

    Solid-state NMR spectroscopy (ssNMR) has made significant progress towards the study of membrane proteins in their native cellular membranes. However, reduced spectroscopic sensitivity and high background signal levels can complicate these experiments. Here, we describe a method for ssNMR to specifically label a single protein by repressing endogenous protein expression with rifampicin. Our results demonstrate that treatment of E. coli with rifampicin during induction of recombinant membrane protein expression reduces background signals for different expression levels and improves sensitivity in cellular membrane samples. Further, the method reduces the amount of time and resources needed to produce membrane protein samples, enabling new strategies for studying challenging membrane proteins by ssNMR. PMID:25956570

  9. Isolation and identification of Enterococcus faecalis membrane proteins using membrane shaving, 1D SDS/PAGE, and mass spectrometry.

    PubMed

    Cathro, Peter; McCarthy, Peter; Hoffmann, Peter; Zilm, Peter

    2016-06-01

    Enterococcus faecalis is a significant nosocomial pathogen, which is able to survive in diverse environments and resist killing with antimicrobial therapies. The expression of cell membrane proteins play an important role in how bacteria respond to environmental stress. As such, the capacity to identify and study membrane protein expression is critical to our understanding of how specific proteins influence bacterial survival. Here, we describe a combined approach to identify membrane proteins of E. faecalis ATCC V583 using membranes fractionated by either 1D SDS/PAGE or membrane shaving, coupled with LC-ESI mass spectrometry. We identified 222 membrane-associated proteins, which represent approximately 24% of the predicted membrane-associated proteome: 170 were isolated using 1D SDS/PAGE and 68 with membrane shaving, with 36 proteins being common to both the techniques. Of the proteins identified by membrane shaving, 97% were membrane-associated with the majority being integral membrane proteins (89%). Most of the proteins identified with known physiology are involved with transportation across the membrane. The combined 1D SDS/PAGE and membrane shaving approach has produced the greatest number of membrane proteins identified from E. faecalis to date. These protocols will aid future researchers investigating changes in the membrane proteome of E. faecalis by improving our understanding of how E. faecalis adapts and responds to its environment. PMID:27419061

  10. Mixing and Matching Detergents for Membrane Protein NMR Structure Determination

    SciTech Connect

    Columbus, Linda; Lipfert, Jan; Jambunathan, Kalyani; Fox, Daniel A.; Sim, Adelene Y.L.; Doniach, Sebastian; Lesley, Scott A.

    2009-10-21

    One major obstacle to membrane protein structure determination is the selection of a detergent micelle that mimics the native lipid bilayer. Currently, detergents are selected by exhaustive screening because the effects of protein-detergent interactions on protein structure are poorly understood. In this study, the structure and dynamics of an integral membrane protein in different detergents is investigated by nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) and electron paramagnetic resonance (EPR) spectroscopy and small-angle X-ray scattering (SAXS). The results suggest that matching of the micelle dimensions to the protein's hydrophobic surface avoids exchange processes that reduce the completeness of the NMR observations. Based on these dimensions, several mixed micelles were designed that improved the completeness of NMR observations. These findings provide a basis for the rational design of mixed micelles that may advance membrane protein structure determination by NMR.

  11. Organization and dynamics of SNARE proteins in the presynaptic membrane

    PubMed Central

    Milovanovic, Dragomir; Jahn, Reinhard

    2015-01-01

    Our view of the lateral organization of lipids and proteins in the plasma membrane has evolved substantially in the last few decades. It is widely accepted that many, if not all, plasma membrane proteins and lipids are organized in specific domains. These domains vary widely in size, composition, and stability, and they represent platforms governing diverse cell functions. The presynaptic plasma membrane is a well-studied example of a membrane which undergoes rearrangements, especially during exo- and endocytosis. Many proteins and lipids involved in presynaptic function are known, and major efforts have been made to understand their spatial organization and dynamics. Here, we focus on the mechanisms underlying the organization of SNAREs, the key proteins of the fusion machinery, in distinct domains, and we discuss the functional significance of these clusters. PMID:25852575

  12. Decoding signals for membrane protein assembly using alkaline phosphatase fusions.

    PubMed Central

    McGovern, K; Ehrmann, M; Beckwith, J

    1991-01-01

    We have used genetic methods to investigate the role of the different domains of a bacterial cytoplasmic membrane protein, MalF, in determining its topology. This was done by analyzing the effects of MalF topology of deleting various domains of the protein using MalF-alkaline phosphatase fusion proteins. Our results show that the cytoplasmic domains of the protein are the pre-eminent topogenic signals. These domains contain information that determines their cytoplasmic location and, thus, the orientation of the membrane spanning segments surrounding them. Periplasmic domains do not appear to have equivalent information specifying their location and membrane spanning segments do not contain information defining their orientation in the membrane. The strength of cytoplasmic domains as topogenic signals varies, correlated with the density of positively charged amino acids within them. Images PMID:1915262

  13. Transport proteins of the plant plasma membrane

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Assmann, S. M.; Haubrick, L. L.; Evans, M. L. (Principal Investigator)

    1996-01-01

    Recently developed molecular and genetic approaches have enabled the identification and functional characterization of novel genes encoding ion channels, ion carriers, and water channels of the plant plasma membrane.

  14. NMR Structures of Membrane Proteins in Phospholipid Bilayers

    PubMed Central

    Radoicic, Jasmina; Lu, George J.; Opella, Stanley J.

    2014-01-01

    Membrane proteins have always presented technical challenges for structural studies because of their requirement for a lipid environment. Multiple approaches exist including X-ray crystallography and electron microscopy that can give significant insights into their structure and function. However, nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) is unique in that it offers the possibility of determining the structures of unmodified membrane proteins in their native environment of phospholipid bilayers under physiological conditions. Furthermore, NMR enables the characterization of the structure and dynamics of backbone and side chain sites of the proteins alone and in complexes with both small molecules and other biopolymers. The learning curve has been steep for the field as most initial studies were performed under non-native environments using modified proteins until ultimately progress in both techniques and instrumentation led to the possibility of examining unmodified membrane proteins in phospholipid bilayers under physiological conditions. This review aims to provide an overview of the development and application of NMR to membrane proteins. It highlights some of the most significant structural milestones that have been reached by NMR spectroscopy of membrane proteins; especially those accomplished with the proteins in phospholipid bilayer environments where they function. PMID:25032938

  15. Comprehensive Proteomic Analysis of Membrane Proteins in Toxoplasma gondii*

    PubMed Central

    Che, Fa-Yun; Madrid-Aliste, Carlos; Burd, Berta; Zhang, Hongshan; Nieves, Edward; Kim, Kami; Fiser, Andras; Angeletti, Ruth Hogue; Weiss, Louis M.

    2011-01-01

    Toxoplasma gondii (T. gondii) is an obligate intracellular protozoan parasite that is an important human and animal pathogen. Experimental information on T. gondii membrane proteins is limited, and the majority of gene predictions with predicted transmembrane motifs are of unknown function. A systematic analysis of the membrane proteome of T. gondii is important not only for understanding this parasite's invasion mechanism(s), but also for the discovery of potential drug targets and new preventative and therapeutic strategies. Here we report a comprehensive analysis of the membrane proteome of T. gondii, employing three proteomics strategies: one-dimensional gel liquid chromatography-tandem MS analysis (one-dimensional gel electrophoresis LC-MS/MS), biotin labeling in conjunction with one-dimensional gel LC-MS/MS analysis, and a novel strategy that combines three-layer “sandwich” gel electrophoresis with multidimensional protein identification technology. A total of 2241 T. gondii proteins with at least one predicted transmembrane segment were identified and grouped into 841 sequentially nonredundant protein clusters, which account for 21.8% of the predicted transmembrane protein clusters in the T. gondii genome. A large portion (42%) of the identified T. gondii membrane proteins are hypothetical proteins. Furthermore, many of the membrane proteins validated by mass spectrometry are unique to T. gondii or to the Apicomplexa, providing a set of gene predictions ripe for experimental investigation, and potentially suitable targets for the development of therapeutic strategies. PMID:20935347

  16. Polyether sulfone/hydroxyapatite mixed matrix membranes for protein purification

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sun, Junfen; Wu, Lishun

    2014-07-01

    This work proposes a novel approach for protein purification from solution using mixed matrix membranes (MMMs) comprising of hydroxyapatite (HAP) inside polyether sulfone (PES) matrix. The influence of HAP particle loading on membrane morphology is studied. The MMMs are further characterized concerning permeability and adsorption capacity. The MMMs show purification of protein via both diffusion as well as adsorption, and show the potential of using MMMs for improvements in protein purification techniques. The bovine serum albumin (BSA) was used as a model protein. The properties and structures of MMMs prepared by immersion phase separation process were characterized by pure water flux, BSA adsorption and scanning electron microscopy (SEM).

  17. Exceptional overproduction of a functional human membrane protein.

    PubMed

    Nyblom, Maria; Oberg, Fredrik; Lindkvist-Petersson, Karin; Hallgren, Karin; Findlay, Heather; Wikström, Jennie; Karlsson, Anders; Hansson, Orjan; Booth, Paula J; Bill, Roslyn M; Neutze, Richard; Hedfalk, Kristina

    2007-11-01

    Eukaryotic--especially human--membrane protein overproduction remains a major challenge in biochemistry. Heterologously overproduced and purified proteins provide a starting point for further biochemical, biophysical and structural studies, and the lack of sufficient quantities of functional membrane proteins is frequently a bottleneck hindering this. Here, we report exceptionally high production levels of a correctly folded and crystallisable recombinant human integral membrane protein in its active form; human aquaporin 1 (hAQP1) has been heterologously produced in the membranes of the methylotrophic yeast Pichia pastoris. After solubilisation and a two step purification procedure, at least 90 mg hAQP1 per liter of culture is obtained. Water channel activity of this purified hAQP1 was verified by reconstitution into proteoliposomes and performing stopped-flow vesicle shrinkage measurements. Mass spectrometry confirmed the identity of hAQP1 in crude membrane preparations, and also from purified protein reconstituted into proteoliposomes. Furthermore, crystallisation screens yielded diffraction quality crystals of untagged recombinant hAQP1. This study illustrates the power of the yeast P. pastoris as a host to produce exceptionally high yields of a functionally active, human integral membrane protein for subsequent functional and structural characterization. PMID:17869538

  18. Phytochemicals perturb membranes and promiscuously alter protein function.

    PubMed

    Ingólfsson, Helgi I; Thakur, Pratima; Herold, Karl F; Hobart, E Ashley; Ramsey, Nicole B; Periole, Xavier; de Jong, Djurre H; Zwama, Martijn; Yilmaz, Duygu; Hall, Katherine; Maretzky, Thorsten; Hemmings, Hugh C; Blobel, Carl; Marrink, Siewert J; Koçer, Armağan; Sack, Jon T; Andersen, Olaf S

    2014-08-15

    A wide variety of phytochemicals are consumed for their perceived health benefits. Many of these phytochemicals have been found to alter numerous cell functions, but the mechanisms underlying their biological activity tend to be poorly understood. Phenolic phytochemicals are particularly promiscuous modifiers of membrane protein function, suggesting that some of their actions may be due to a common, membrane bilayer-mediated mechanism. To test whether bilayer perturbation may underlie this diversity of actions, we examined five bioactive phenols reported to have medicinal value: capsaicin from chili peppers, curcumin from turmeric, EGCG from green tea, genistein from soybeans, and resveratrol from grapes. We find that each of these widely consumed phytochemicals alters lipid bilayer properties and the function of diverse membrane proteins. Molecular dynamics simulations show that these phytochemicals modify bilayer properties by localizing to the bilayer/solution interface. Bilayer-modifying propensity was verified using a gramicidin-based assay, and indiscriminate modulation of membrane protein function was demonstrated using four proteins: membrane-anchored metalloproteases, mechanosensitive ion channels, and voltage-dependent potassium and sodium channels. Each protein exhibited similar responses to multiple phytochemicals, consistent with a common, bilayer-mediated mechanism. Our results suggest that many effects of amphiphilic phytochemicals are due to cell membrane perturbations, rather than specific protein binding. PMID:24901212

  19. Phytochemicals Perturb Membranes and Promiscuously Alter Protein Function

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    A wide variety of phytochemicals are consumed for their perceived health benefits. Many of these phytochemicals have been found to alter numerous cell functions, but the mechanisms underlying their biological activity tend to be poorly understood. Phenolic phytochemicals are particularly promiscuous modifiers of membrane protein function, suggesting that some of their actions may be due to a common, membrane bilayer-mediated mechanism. To test whether bilayer perturbation may underlie this diversity of actions, we examined five bioactive phenols reported to have medicinal value: capsaicin from chili peppers, curcumin from turmeric, EGCG from green tea, genistein from soybeans, and resveratrol from grapes. We find that each of these widely consumed phytochemicals alters lipid bilayer properties and the function of diverse membrane proteins. Molecular dynamics simulations show that these phytochemicals modify bilayer properties by localizing to the bilayer/solution interface. Bilayer-modifying propensity was verified using a gramicidin-based assay, and indiscriminate modulation of membrane protein function was demonstrated using four proteins: membrane-anchored metalloproteases, mechanosensitive ion channels, and voltage-dependent potassium and sodium channels. Each protein exhibited similar responses to multiple phytochemicals, consistent with a common, bilayer-mediated mechanism. Our results suggest that many effects of amphiphilic phytochemicals are due to cell membrane perturbations, rather than specific protein binding. PMID:24901212

  20. In Situ Quantification of Protein Binding to the Plasma Membrane

    PubMed Central

    Smith, Elizabeth M.; Hennen, Jared; Chen, Yan; Mueller, Joachim D.

    2015-01-01

    This study presents a fluorescence-based assay that allows for direct measurement of protein binding to the plasma membrane inside living cells. An axial scan through the cell generates a fluorescence intensity profile that is analyzed to determine the membrane-bound and cytoplasmic concentrations of a peripheral membrane protein labeled by the enhanced green fluorescent protein (EGFP). The membrane binding curve is constructed by mapping those concentrations for a population of cells with a wide range of protein expression levels, and a fit of the binding curve determines the number of binding sites and the dissociation coefficient. We experimentally verified the technique, using myosin-1C-EGFP as a model system and fit its binding curve. Furthermore, we studied the protein-lipid interactions of the membrane binding domains from lactadherin and phospholipase C-δ1 to evaluate the feasibility of using competition binding experiments to identify specific lipid-protein interactions in living cells. Finally, we applied the technique to determine the lipid specificity, the number of binding sites, and the dissociation coefficient of membrane binding for the Gag matrix domain of human T-lymphotropic virus type 1, which provides insight into early assembly steps of the retrovirus. PMID:26039166

  1. Clipping or Extracting: Two Ways to Membrane Protein Degradation.

    PubMed

    Avci, Dönem; Lemberg, Marius K

    2015-10-01

    Protein degradation is a fundamentally important process that allows cells to recognize and remove damaged protein species and to regulate protein abundance according to functional need. A fundamental challenge is to understand how membrane proteins are recognized and removed from cellular organelles. While most of our understanding of this mechanism comes from studies on p97/Cdc48-mediated protein dislocation along the endoplasmic reticulum (ER)-associated degradation (ERAD) pathway, recent studies have revealed intramembrane proteolysis to be an additional mechanism that can extract transmembrane segments. Here, we review these two principles in membrane protein degradation and discuss how intramembrane proteolysis, which introduces an irreversible step in protein dislocation, is used to drive regulated protein turnover. PMID:26410407

  2. Active membrane transport and receptor proteins from bacteria.

    PubMed

    Saidijam, M; Bettaney, K E; Szakonyi, G; Psakis, G; Shibayama, K; Suzuki, S; Clough, J L; Blessie, V; Abu-Bakr, A; Baumberg, S; Meuller, J; Hoyle, C K; Palmer, S L; Butaye, P; Walravens, K; Patching, S G; O'reilly, J; Rutherford, N G; Bill, R M; Roper, D I; Phillips-Jones, M K; Henderson, P J F

    2005-08-01

    A general strategy for the expression of bacterial membrane transport and receptor genes in Escherichia coli is described. Expression is amplified so that the encoded proteins comprise 5-35% of E. coli inner membrane protein. Depending upon their topology, proteins are produced with RGSH6 or a Strep tag at the C-terminus. These enable purification in mg quantities for crystallization and NMR studies. Examples of one nutrient uptake and one multidrug extrusion protein from Helicobacter pylori are described. This strategy is successful for membrane proteins from H. pylori, E. coli, Enterococcus faecalis, Bacillus subtilis, Staphylococcus aureus, Microbacterium liquefaciens, Brucella abortus, Brucella melitensis, Campylobacter jejuni, Neisseria meningitides, Streptomyces coelicolor and Rhodobacter sphaeroides. PMID:16042616

  3. The functions of tryptophan residues in membrane proteins

    SciTech Connect

    Schiffer, M.; Chang, C.H.; Stevens, F.J.

    1994-08-01

    Membrane proteins in general have a significantly higher Trp content than do soluble proteins. This is especially true for the M and L subunits of the photosynthetic reaction center from purple bacteria. The Trp residues are located mostly in the segments that connect the transmembrane helices. Further, they are concentrated at the periplasmic side of the complex. Within the protein subunits, many form hydrogen bonds with carbonyl oxygens of the main chain, thereby stabilizing the protein. On the surface of the molecule, they are correctly positioned to form hydrogen bonds with the lipid head groups while their hydrophobic rings are immersed in the lipid part of the bilayer. We suggest that Trp residues are involved in the translocation of protein through the membrane and that following translocation, Trp residues serve as anchors on the periplasmic side of the membrane.

  4. Topological Transitions in Mitochondrial Membranes controlled by Apoptotic Proteins

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hwee Lai, Ghee; Sanders, Lori K.; Mishra, Abhijit; Schmidt, Nathan W.; Wong, Gerard C. L.; Ivashyna, Olena; Schlesinger, Paul H.

    2010-03-01

    The Bcl-2 family comprises pro-apoptotic proteins, capable of permeabilizing the mitochondrial membrane, and anti-apoptotic members interacting in an antagonistic fashion to regulate programmed cell death (apoptosis). They offer potential therapeutic targets to re-engage cellular suicide in tumor cells but the extensive network of implicated protein-protein interactions has impeded full understanding of the decision pathway. We show, using synchrotron x-ray diffraction, that pro-apoptotic proteins interact with mitochondrial-like model membranes to generate saddle-splay (negative Gaussian) curvature topologically required for pore formation, while anti-apoptotic proteins can deactivate curvature generation by molecules drastically different from Bcl-2 family members and offer evidence for membrane-curvature mediated interactions general enough to affect very disparate systems.

  5. Domain formation in membranes caused by lipid wetting of protein.

    PubMed

    Akimov, Sergey A; Frolov, Vladimir A J; Kuzmin, Peter I; Zimmerberg, Joshua; Chizmadzhev, Yuri A; Cohen, Fredric S

    2008-05-01

    Formation of rafts and other domains in cell membranes is considered as wetting of proteins by lipids. The membrane is modeled as a continuous elastic medium. Thermodynamic functions of the lipid films that wet proteins are calculated using a mean-field theory of liquid crystals as adapted to biomembranes. This approach yields the conditions necessary for a macroscopic wetting film to form; its thickness could also be determined. It is shown that films of macroscopic thicknesses form around large (tens nanometers in diameter) lipid-protein aggregates; only thin adsorption films form around single proteins or small complexes. The means by which wetting films can facilitate the merger of these aggregates is considered. It is shown that a wetting film prevents a protein from leaving an aggregate. Using experimentally derived values of elastic moduli and spontaneous curvatures as well as height mismatch between aggregates and bulk membrane, we obtained numerical results, which can be compared with the experimental data. PMID:18643096

  6. Membrane protein properties revealed through data-rich electrostatics calculations

    PubMed Central

    Guerriero, Christopher J.; Brodsky, Jeffrey L.; Grabe, Michael

    2015-01-01

    SUMMARY The electrostatic properties of membrane proteins often reveal many of their key biophysical characteristics, such as ion channel selectivity and the stability of charged membrane-spanning segments. The Poisson-Boltzmann (PB) equation is the gold standard for calculating protein electrostatics, and the software APBSmem enables the solution of the PB equation in the presence of a membrane. Here, we describe significant advances to APBSmem including: full automation of system setup, per-residue energy decomposition, incorporation of PDB2PQR, calculation of membrane induced pKa shifts, calculation of non-polar energies, and command-line scripting for large scale calculations. We highlight these new features with calculations carried out on a number of membrane proteins, including the recently solved structure of the ion channel TRPV1 and a large survey of 1,614 membrane proteins of known structure. This survey provides a comprehensive list of residues with large electrostatic penalties for being embedded in the membrane potentially revealing interesting functional information. PMID:26118532

  7. Predictive energy landscapes for folding membrane protein assemblies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Truong, Ha H.; Kim, Bobby L.; Schafer, Nicholas P.; Wolynes, Peter G.

    2015-12-01

    We study the energy landscapes for membrane protein oligomerization using the Associative memory, Water mediated, Structure and Energy Model with an implicit membrane potential (AWSEM-membrane), a coarse-grained molecular dynamics model previously optimized under the assumption that the energy landscapes for folding α-helical membrane protein monomers are funneled once their native topology within the membrane is established. In this study we show that the AWSEM-membrane force field is able to sample near native binding interfaces of several oligomeric systems. By predicting candidate structures using simulated annealing, we further show that degeneracies in predicting structures of membrane protein monomers are generally resolved in the folding of the higher order assemblies as is the case in the assemblies of both nicotinic acetylcholine receptor and V-type Na+-ATPase dimers. The physics of the phenomenon resembles domain swapping, which is consistent with the landscape following the principle of minimal frustration. We revisit also the classic Khorana study of the reconstitution of bacteriorhodopsin from its fragments, which is the close analogue of the early Anfinsen experiment on globular proteins. Here, we show the retinal cofactor likely plays a major role in selecting the final functional assembly.

  8. Mechanisms of integral membrane protein insertion and folding

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    The biogenesis, folding, and structure of α-helical membrane proteins (MPs) are important to understand because they underlie virtually all physiological processes in cells including key metabolic pathways, such as the respiratory chain and the photosystems, and the transport of solutes and signals across membranes. Nearly all MPs require translocons—often referred to as protein-conducting channels—for proper insertion into their target membrane. Remarkable progress toward understanding the structure and functioning of translocons has been made during the past decade. Here we review and assess this progress critically. All available evidence indicates that MPs are equilibrium structures that achieve their final structural states by folding along thermodynamically controlled pathways. The main challenge for cells is the targeting and membrane insertion of highly hydrophobic amino acid sequences. Targeting and insertion are managed in cells principally by interactions between ribosomes and membrane-embedded translocons. Our review examines the biophysical and biological boundaries of membrane protein insertion and the folding of polytopic membrane proteins in vivo. A theme of the review is the under-appreciated role of basic thermodynamic principles in MP folding and assembly. Thermodynamics not only dictates the final folded structure, it is the driving force for the evolution of the ribosome-translocon system of assembly. We conclude the review with a perspective suggesting a new view of translocon-guided MP insertion. PMID:25277655

  9. Expression of two membrane fusion proteins, synaptosome-associated protein of 25 kDa and vesicle-associated membrane protein, in choroid plexus epithelium.

    PubMed

    Chung, I; Burkart, A; Szmydynger-Chodobska, J; Dodd, K A; Trimble, W S; Miller, K V; Shim, M; Chodobski, A

    2003-01-01

    In addition to being the major site of cerebrospinal fluid formation, the choroid plexus epithelium emerges as an important source of polypeptides in the brain. Physiologically regulated release of some polypeptides synthesized by the choroid plexus has been shown. The molecular mechanisms underlying this polypeptide secretion have not been characterized, however. In the present study, synaptosome-associated protein of 25 kDa and vesicle-associated membrane protein, two membrane fusion proteins playing a critical role in exocytosis in neurons and endocrine cells, were found to be expressed in the choroid plexus epithelium. It was also shown that in choroidal epithelium, synaptosome-associated protein of 25 kDa and vesicle-associated membrane protein stably interact. Two members of the vesicle-associated membrane protein family, vesicle-associated membrane protein-1 and vesicle-associated membrane protein-2, were expressed in the rat choroid plexus at the messenger RNA and protein level. However, their newly discovered isoforms, vesicle-associated membrane protein-1b and vesicle-associated membrane protein-2b, produced by alternative RNA splicing, were not detected in choroidal tissue. Immunohistochemistry demonstrated that vesicle-associated membrane protein is confined to the cytoplasm of choroidal epithelium, whereas synaptosome-associated protein of 25 kDa is associated with plasma membranes, albeit with a varied cellular distribution among species studied. Specifically, in the rat choroid plexus, synaptosome-associated protein of 25 kDa was localized to the basolateral membrane domain of choroidal epithelium and was expressed in small groups of cells. In comparison, in ovine and human choroidal tissues, apical staining for synaptosome-associated protein of 25 kDa was found in the majority of epithelial cells. These species-related differences in cellular synaptosome-associated protein of 25 kDa distribution suggested that the synaptosome-associated protein of

  10. Setting up and running molecular dynamics simulations of membrane proteins.

    PubMed

    Kandt, Christian; Ash, Walter L; Tieleman, D Peter

    2007-04-01

    Molecular dynamics simulations have become a popular and powerful technique to study lipids and membrane proteins. We present some general questions and issues that should be considered prior to embarking on molecular dynamics simulation studies of membrane proteins and review common simulation methods. We suggest a practical approach to setting up and running simulations of membrane proteins, and introduce two new (related) methods to embed a protein in a lipid bilayer. Both methods rely on placing lipids and the protein(s) on a widely spaced grid and then 'shrinking' the grid until the bilayer with the protein has the desired density, with lipids neatly packed around the protein. When starting from a grid based on a single lipid structure, or several potentially different lipid structures (method 1), the bilayer will start well-packed but requires more equilibration. When starting from a pre-equilibrated bilayer, either pure or mixed, most of the structure of the bilayer stays intact, reducing equilibration time (method 2). The main advantages of these methods are that they minimize equilibration time and can be almost completely automated, nearly eliminating one time consuming step in MD simulations of membrane proteins. PMID:17367719

  11. Genomic analysis of membrane protein families: abundance and conserved motifs

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Yang; Engelman, Donald M; Gerstein, Mark

    2002-01-01

    Background Polytopic membrane proteins can be related to each other on the basis of the number of transmembrane helices and sequence similarities. Building on the Pfam classification of protein domain families, and using transmembrane-helix prediction and sequence-similarity searching, we identified a total of 526 well-characterized membrane protein families in 26 recently sequenced genomes. To this we added a clustering of a number of predicted but unclassified membrane proteins, resulting in a total of 637 membrane protein families. Results Analysis of the occurrence and composition of these families revealed several interesting trends. The number of assigned membrane protein domains has an approximately linear relationship to the total number of open reading frames (ORFs) in 26 genomes studied. Caenorhabditis elegans is an apparent outlier, because of its high representation of seven-span transmembrane (7-TM) chemoreceptor families. In all genomes, including that of C. elegans, the number of distinct membrane protein families has a logarithmic relation to the number of ORFs. Glycine, proline, and tyrosine locations tend to be conserved in transmembrane regions within families, whereas isoleucine, valine, and methionine locations are relatively mutable. Analysis of motifs in putative transmembrane helices reveals that GxxxG and GxxxxxxG (which can be written GG4 and GG7, respectively; see Materials and methods) are among the most prevalent. This was noted in earlier studies; we now find these motifs are particularly well conserved in families, however, especially those corresponding to transporters, symporters, and channels. Conclusions We carried out a genome-wide analysis on patterns of the classified polytopic membrane protein families and analyzed the distribution of conserved amino acids and motifs in the transmembrane helix regions in these families. PMID:12372142

  12. Ubiquilins Chaperone and Triage Mitochondrial Membrane Proteins for Degradation.

    PubMed

    Itakura, Eisuke; Zavodszky, Eszter; Shao, Sichen; Wohlever, Matthew L; Keenan, Robert J; Hegde, Ramanujan S

    2016-07-01

    We investigated how mitochondrial membrane proteins remain soluble in the cytosol until their delivery to mitochondria or degradation at the proteasome. We show that Ubiquilin family proteins bind transmembrane domains in the cytosol to prevent aggregation and temporarily allow opportunities for membrane targeting. Over time, Ubiquilins recruit an E3 ligase to ubiquitinate bound clients. The attached ubiquitin engages Ubiquilin's UBA domain, normally bound to an intramolecular UBL domain, and stabilizes the Ubiquilin-client complex. This conformational change precludes additional chances at membrane targeting for the client, while simultaneously freeing Ubiquilin's UBL domain for targeting to the proteasome. Loss of Ubiquilins by genetic ablation or sequestration in polyglutamine aggregates leads to accumulation of non-inserted mitochondrial membrane protein precursors. These findings define Ubiquilins as a family of chaperones for cytosolically exposed transmembrane domains and explain how they use ubiquitin to triage clients for degradation via coordinated intra- and intermolecular interactions. PMID:27345149

  13. Accurate Determination of Conformational Transitions in Oligomeric Membrane Proteins

    PubMed Central

    Sanz-Hernández, Máximo; Vostrikov, Vitaly V.; Veglia, Gianluigi; De Simone, Alfonso

    2016-01-01

    The structural dynamics governing collective motions in oligomeric membrane proteins play key roles in vital biomolecular processes at cellular membranes. In this study, we present a structural refinement approach that combines solid-state NMR experiments and molecular simulations to accurately describe concerted conformational transitions identifying the overall structural, dynamical, and topological states of oligomeric membrane proteins. The accuracy of the structural ensembles generated with this method is shown to reach the statistical error limit, and is further demonstrated by correctly reproducing orthogonal NMR data. We demonstrate the accuracy of this approach by characterising the pentameric state of phospholamban, a key player in the regulation of calcium uptake in the sarcoplasmic reticulum, and by probing its dynamical activation upon phosphorylation. Our results underline the importance of using an ensemble approach to characterise the conformational transitions that are often responsible for the biological function of oligomeric membrane protein states. PMID:26975211

  14. Membrane bending by protein crowding is affected by protein lateral confinement.

    PubMed

    Derganc, Jure; Čopič, Alenka

    2016-06-01

    Crowding of asymmetrically-distributed membrane proteins has been recently recognized as an important factor in remodeling of biological membranes, for example during transport vesicle formation. In this paper, we theoretically analyze the effect of protein crowding on membrane bending and examine its dependence on protein size, shape, transmembrane asymmetry and lateral confinement. We consider three scenarios of protein lateral organization, which are highly relevant for cellular membranes in general: freely diffusing membrane proteins without lateral confinement, the presence of a diffusion barrier and interactions with a vesicular coat. We show that protein crowding affects vesicle formation even if the proteins are distributed symmetrically across the membrane and that this effect depends significantly on lateral confinement. The largest crowding effect is predicted for the proteins that are confined to the forming vesicle by a diffusion barrier. We calculate the bending properties of a crowded membrane and find that its spontaneous curvature depends primarily on the degree of transmembrane asymmetry, and its effective bending modulus on the type of lateral confinement. Using the example of COPII vesicle formation from the endoplasmic reticulum, we analyze the energetic cost of vesicle formation. The results provide a novel insight into the effects of lateral and transmembrane organization of membrane proteins, and can guide data interpretation and future experimental approaches. PMID:26969088

  15. Structural adaptations of proteins to different biological membranes

    PubMed Central

    Pogozheva, Irina D.; Tristram-Nagle, Stephanie; Mosberg, Henry I.; Lomize, Andrei L.

    2013-01-01

    To gain insight into adaptations of proteins to their membranes, intrinsic hydrophobic thicknesses, distributions of different chemical groups and profiles of hydrogen-bonding capacities (α and β) and the dipolarity/polarizability parameter (π*) were calculated for lipid-facing surfaces of 460 integral α-helical, β-barrel and peripheral proteins from eight types of biomembranes. For comparison, polarity profiles were also calculated for ten artificial lipid bilayers that have been previously studied by neutron and X-ray scattering. Estimated hydrophobic thicknesses are 30-31 Å for proteins from endoplasmic reticulum, thylakoid, and various bacterial plasma membranes, but differ for proteins from outer bacterial, inner mitochondrial and eukaryotic plasma membranes (23.9, 28.6 and 33.5 Å, respectively). Protein and lipid polarity parameters abruptly change in the lipid carbonyl zone that matches the calculated hydrophobic boundaries. Maxima of positively charged protein groups correspond to the location of lipid phosphates at 20-22 Å distances from the membrane center. Locations of Tyr atoms coincide with hydrophobic boundaries, while distributions maxima of Trp rings are shifted by 3-4 Å toward the membrane center. Distributions of Trp atoms indicate the presence of two 5-8 Å-wide midpolar regions with intermediate π* values within the hydrocarbon core, whose size and symmetry depend on the lipid composition of membrane leaflets. Midpolar regions are especially asymmetric in outer bacterial membranes and cell membranes of mesophilic but not hyperthermophilic archaebacteria, indicating the larger width of the central nonpolar region in the later case. In artificial lipid bilayers, midpolar regions are observed up to the level of acyl chain double bonds. PMID:23811361

  16. Quality control of nonstop membrane proteins at the ER membrane and in the cytosol.

    PubMed

    Arakawa, Shunsuke; Yunoki, Kaori; Izawa, Toshiaki; Tamura, Yasushi; Nishikawa, Shuh-Ichi; Endo, Toshiya

    2016-01-01

    Since messenger RNAs without a stop codon (nonstop mRNAs) for organelle-targeted proteins and their translation products (nonstop proteins) generate clogged translocon channels as well as stalled ribosomes, cells have mechanisms to degrade nonstop mRNAs and nonstop proteins and to clear the translocons (e.g. the Sec61 complex) by release of nonstop proteins into the organellar lumen. Here we followed the fate of nonstop endoplasmic reticulum (ER) membrane proteins with different membrane topologies in yeast to evaluate the importance of the Ltn1-dependent cytosolic degradation and the Dom34-dependent release of the nonstop membrane proteins. Ltn1-dependent degradation differed for membrane proteins with different topologies and its failure did not affect ER protein import or cell growth. On the other hand, failure in the Dom34-dependent release of the nascent polypeptide from the ribosome led to the block of the Sec61 channel and resultant inhibition of other protein import into the ER caused cell growth defects. Therefore, the nascent chain release from the translation apparatus is more instrumental in clearance of the clogged ER translocon channel and thus maintenance of normal cellular functions. PMID:27481473

  17. Quality control of nonstop membrane proteins at the ER membrane and in the cytosol

    PubMed Central

    Arakawa, Shunsuke; Yunoki, Kaori; Izawa, Toshiaki; Tamura, Yasushi; Nishikawa, Shuh-ichi; Endo, Toshiya

    2016-01-01

    Since messenger RNAs without a stop codon (nonstop mRNAs) for organelle-targeted proteins and their translation products (nonstop proteins) generate clogged translocon channels as well as stalled ribosomes, cells have mechanisms to degrade nonstop mRNAs and nonstop proteins and to clear the translocons (e.g. the Sec61 complex) by release of nonstop proteins into the organellar lumen. Here we followed the fate of nonstop endoplasmic reticulum (ER) membrane proteins with different membrane topologies in yeast to evaluate the importance of the Ltn1-dependent cytosolic degradation and the Dom34-dependent release of the nonstop membrane proteins. Ltn1-dependent degradation differed for membrane proteins with different topologies and its failure did not affect ER protein import or cell growth. On the other hand, failure in the Dom34-dependent release of the nascent polypeptide from the ribosome led to the block of the Sec61 channel and resultant inhibition of other protein import into the ER caused cell growth defects. Therefore, the nascent chain release from the translation apparatus is more instrumental in clearance of the clogged ER translocon channel and thus maintenance of normal cellular functions. PMID:27481473

  18. MreB-Dependent Organization of the E. coli Cytoplasmic Membrane Controls Membrane Protein Diffusion.

    PubMed

    Oswald, Felix; Varadarajan, Aravindan; Lill, Holger; Peterman, Erwin J G; Bollen, Yves J M

    2016-03-01

    The functional organization of prokaryotic cell membranes, which is essential for many cellular processes, has been challenging to analyze due to the small size and nonflat geometry of bacterial cells. Here, we use single-molecule fluorescence microscopy and three-dimensional quantitative analyses in live Escherichia coli to demonstrate that its cytoplasmic membrane contains microdomains with distinct physical properties. We show that the stability of these microdomains depends on the integrity of the MreB cytoskeletal network underneath the membrane. We explore how the interplay between cytoskeleton and membrane affects trans-membrane protein (TMP) diffusion and reveal that the mobility of the TMPs tested is subdiffusive, most likely caused by confinement of TMP mobility by the submembranous MreB network. Our findings demonstrate that the dynamic architecture of prokaryotic cell membranes is controlled by the MreB cytoskeleton and regulates the mobility of TMPs. PMID:26958890

  19. Geometrical Membrane Curvature as an Allosteric Regulator of Membrane Protein Structure and Function

    PubMed Central

    Tonnesen, Asger; Christensen, Sune M.; Tkach, Vadym; Stamou, Dimitrios

    2014-01-01

    Transmembrane proteins are embedded in cellular membranes of varied lipid composition and geometrical curvature. Here, we studied for the first time the allosteric effect of geometrical membrane curvature on transmembrane protein structure and function. We used single-channel optical analysis of the prototypic transmembrane β-barrel α-hemolysin (α-HL) reconstituted on immobilized single small unilamellar liposomes of different diameter and therefore curvature. Our data demonstrate that physiologically abundant geometrical membrane curvatures can enforce a dramatic allosteric regulation (1000-fold inhibition) of α-HL permeability. High membrane curvatures (1/diameter ∼1/40 nm−1) compressed the effective pore diameter of α-HL from 14.2 ± 0.8 Å to 11.4 ± 0.6 Å. This reduction in effective pore area (∼40%) when combined with the area compressibility of α-HL revealed an effective membrane tension of ∼50 mN/m and a curvature-imposed protein deformation energy of ∼7 kBT. Such substantial energies have been shown to conformationally activate, or unfold, β-barrel and α-helical transmembrane proteins, suggesting that membrane curvature could likely regulate allosterically the structure and function of transmembrane proteins in general. PMID:24411252

  20. [Multiparticle computer simulation of protein interactions in the photosynthetic membrane].

    PubMed

    Riznichenko, G Iu; Kovalenko, I B; Abaturova, A M; D'iakonova, A N; Kniazeva, O S; Ustinin, D M; Khrushchev, S S; Rubin, A B

    2011-01-01

    The basic principles of the design of direct multiparticle models and the results of multiparticle computer simulation of electron transfer by mobile protein carriers in the photosynthetic membrane of a chloroplast thylakoid are presented. The reactions of complex formation of the protein plastocyanin with the protein cytochrome f and the pigment-protein complex of photosystem I, as well as of the protein ferredoxin with the protein FNR and photosystem 1 are considered. The role of diffusion and electrostatic interactions is discussed, and the effect of the shape of the reaction volume and ionic strength on the rate of electron transport are discussed. PMID:22117434

  1. Lipopolysaccharide Membranes and Membrane Proteins of Pseudomonas aeruginosa Studied by Computer Simulation

    SciTech Connect

    Straatsma, TP

    2006-12-01

    Pseudomonas aeruginosa is a ubiquitous environmental Gram-negative bacterium with high metabolic versatility and an exceptional ability to adapt to a wide range of ecological environments, including soil, marches, coastal habitats, plant and animal tissues. Gram-negative microbes are characterized by the asymmetric lipopolysaccharide outer membrane, the study of which is important for a number of applications. The adhesion to mineral surfaces plays a central role in characterizing their contribution to the fate of contaminants in complex environmental systems by effecting microbial transport through soils, respiration redox chemistry, and ion mobility. Another important application stems from the fact that it is also a major opportunistic human pathogen that can result in life-threatening infections in many immunocompromised patients, such as lung infections in children with cystic fibrosis, bacteraemia in burn victims, urinary-tract infections in catheterized patients, hospital-acquired pneumonia in patients on respirators, infections in cancer patients receiving chemotherapy, and keratitis and corneal ulcers in users of extended-wear soft contact lenses. The inherent resistance against antibiotics which has been linked with the specific interactions in the outer membrane of P. aeruginosa makes these infections difficult to treat. Developments in simulation methodologies as well as computer hardware have enabled the molecular simulation of biological systems of increasing size and with increasing accuracy, providing detail that is difficult or impossible to obtain experimentally. Computer simulation studies contribute to our understanding of the behavior of proteins, protein-protein and protein-DNA complexes. In recent years, a number of research groups have made significant progress in applying these methods to the study of biological membranes. However, these applications have been focused exclusively on lipid bilayer membranes and on membrane proteins in lipid

  2. Layilin, a Novel Integral Membrane Protein, Is a Hyaluronan Receptor

    PubMed Central

    Bono, Petri; Rubin, Kristofer; Higgins, Jonathan M. G.; Hynes, Richard O.

    2001-01-01

    The actin cytoskeleton plays a significant role in changes of cell shape and motility, and interactions between the actin filaments and the cell membrane are crucial for a variety of cellular processes. Several adaptor proteins, including talin, maintain the cytoskeleton-membrane linkage by binding to integral membrane proteins and to the cytoskeleton. Layilin, a recently characterized transmembrane protein with homology to C-type lectins, is a membrane-binding site for talin in peripheral ruffles of spreading cells. To facilitate studies of layilin's function, we have generated a layilin-Fc fusion protein comprising the extracellular part of layilin joined to human immunoglobulin G heavy chain and used this chimera to identify layilin ligands. Here, we demonstrate that layilin-Fc fusion protein binds to hyaluronan immobilized to Sepharose. Microtiter plate-binding assays, coprecipitation experiments, and staining of sections predigested with different glycosaminoglycan-degrading enzymes and cell adhesion assays all revealed that layilin binds specifically to hyaluronan but not to other tested glycosaminoglycans. Layilin's ability to bind hyaluronan, a ubiquitous extracellular matrix component, reveals an interesting parallel between layilin and CD44, because both can bind to cytoskeleton-membrane linker proteins through their cytoplasmic domains and to hyaluronan through their extracellular domains. This parallelism suggests a role for layilin in cell adhesion and motility. PMID:11294894

  3. Encapsulated membrane proteins: A simplified system for molecular simulation.

    PubMed

    Lee, Sarah C; Khalid, Syma; Pollock, Naomi L; Knowles, Tim J; Edler, Karen; Rothnie, Alice J; R T Thomas, Owen; Dafforn, Timothy R

    2016-10-01

    Over the past 50years there has been considerable progress in our understanding of biomolecular interactions at an atomic level. This in turn has allowed molecular simulation methods employing full atomistic modelling at ever larger scales to develop. However, some challenging areas still remain where there is either a lack of atomic resolution structures or where the simulation system is inherently complex. An area where both challenges are present is that of membranes containing membrane proteins. In this review we analyse a new practical approach to membrane protein study that offers a potential new route to high resolution structures and the possibility to simplify simulations. These new approaches collectively recognise that preservation of the interaction between the membrane protein and the lipid bilayer is often essential to maintain structure and function. The new methods preserve these interactions by producing nano-scale disc shaped particles that include bilayer and the chosen protein. Currently two approaches lead in this area: the MSP system that relies on peptides to stabilise the discs, and SMALPs where an amphipathic styrene maleic acid copolymer is used. Both methods greatly enable protein production and hence have the potential to accelerate atomic resolution structure determination as well as providing a simplified format for simulations of membrane protein dynamics. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: Biosimulations edited by Ilpo Vattulainen and Tomasz Róg. PMID:26946242

  4. [Elution of urinary proteins preserved on nitrocellulose membrane with heating].

    PubMed

    Qin, Weiwei; Gao, Youhe

    2015-09-01

    The preservation of urinary proteins on a membrane plays a vital role in biomarker research, and the efficient elution of proteins preserved on nitrocellulose membrane (NC membrane) determines the application of this method. During the heating elution procedure, we raised the temperature to reduce the intense vortexing time, and kept gentle rotating while precipitation to prevent nitrocellulose reformation. We also used SDS-PAGE and LC-MS/MS to analyze the urinary proteins prepared by heating elution procedure, intense vortexing elution procedure and acetone precipitation method. There was no degradation of proteins prepared by heating elution procedure. Compared with proteins prepared by heating elution method and acetone precipitation method, the overlapping rates of the proteins was almost the same (92.6% versus 96.8%) and the ratios of CV values (< 20%) of the proteins were both high (85.2% and 94.4%). The heating elution procedure achieved good technical reproducibility, and was much simpler and more efficient than the previous one. It can facilitate the application of the preservation of urinary proteins on membrane. PMID:26955716

  5. Swimbladder membrane protein of an abyssal fish, Coryphaenoides acrolepis.

    PubMed

    Mosholder, R S; Josephson, R V; Phleger, C F

    1979-01-01

    Protein components of the membranous foamy tissue collected from the swimbladder of Coryphaenoides acrolepis, a continental slope/deep sea grenadier fish, were partially fractionated and characterized by procedures used successfully for erythrocyte membrane proteins. Methods involving pH and ionic strength adjustment in the presence of EDTA and beta-mercaptoethanol resulted in some protein fractionation but no distinct separation or isolation of membrane proteins. Gel filtration by Sephadex G-100 and Sepharose 2B in the presence of dodecyl sulfate partially fractionated protein species between 18,000 and 150,000 molecular weight (as confirmed by dodecyl sulfate polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis). Low molecular weight proteins were resolvable into a few diffuse and streaky bands by dodecyl sulfate and chloral hydrate polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis, the former giving superior reso-ution. A major fraction of large molecular weight protein (greater than or equal to 40 X 10(6)) was not resolved by any method. A possible explanation for these unusual findings is that decompression due to rapid ascent of the fish from deep ocean caused irreversible alteration of swimbladder membrane proteins. PMID:504363

  6. Targeting membrane proteins for antibody discovery using phage display.

    PubMed

    Jones, Martina L; Alfaleh, Mohamed A; Kumble, Sumukh; Zhang, Shuo; Osborne, Geoffrey W; Yeh, Michael; Arora, Neetika; Hou, Jeff Jia Cheng; Howard, Christopher B; Chin, David Y; Mahler, Stephen M

    2016-01-01

    A critical factor in the successful isolation of new antibodies by phage display is the presentation of a correctly folded antigen. While this is relatively simple for soluble proteins which can be purified and immobilized onto a plastic surface, membrane proteins offer significant challenges for antibody discovery. Whole cell panning allows presentation of the membrane protein in its native conformation, but is complicated by a low target antigen density, high background of irrelevant antigens and non-specific binding of phage particles to cell surfaces. The method described here uses transient transfection of alternating host cell lines and stringent washing steps to address each of these limitations. The successful isolation of antibodies from a naive scFv library is described for three membrane bound proteins; human CD83, canine CD117 and bat CD11b. PMID:27189586

  7. Targeting membrane proteins for antibody discovery using phage display

    PubMed Central

    Jones, Martina L.; Alfaleh, Mohamed A.; Kumble, Sumukh; Zhang, Shuo; Osborne, Geoffrey W.; Yeh, Michael; Arora, Neetika; Hou, Jeff Jia Cheng; Howard, Christopher B.; Chin, David Y.; Mahler, Stephen M.

    2016-01-01

    A critical factor in the successful isolation of new antibodies by phage display is the presentation of a correctly folded antigen. While this is relatively simple for soluble proteins which can be purified and immobilized onto a plastic surface, membrane proteins offer significant challenges for antibody discovery. Whole cell panning allows presentation of the membrane protein in its native conformation, but is complicated by a low target antigen density, high background of irrelevant antigens and non-specific binding of phage particles to cell surfaces. The method described here uses transient transfection of alternating host cell lines and stringent washing steps to address each of these limitations. The successful isolation of antibodies from a naive scFv library is described for three membrane bound proteins; human CD83, canine CD117 and bat CD11b. PMID:27189586

  8. Amyloid protein unfolding and insertion kinetics on neuronal membrane mimics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Qiu, Liming; Buie, Creighton; Vaughn, Mark; Cheng, Kwan

    2010-03-01

    Atomistic details of beta-amyloid (Aβ ) protein unfolding and lipid interaction kinetics mediated by the neuronal membrane surface are important for developing new therapeutic strategies to prevent and cure Alzheimer's disease. Using all-atom MD simulations, we explored the early unfolding and insertion kinetics of 40 and 42 residue long Aβ in binary lipid mixtures with and without cholesterol that mimic the cholesterol-depleted and cholesterol-enriched lipid nanodomains of neurons. The protein conformational transition kinetics was evaluated from the secondary structure profile versus simulation time plot. The extent of membrane disruption was examined by the calculated order parameters of lipid acyl chains and cholesterol fused rings as well as the density profiles of water and lipid headgroups at defined regions across the lipid bilayer from our simulations. Our results revealed that both the cholesterol content and the length of the protein affect the protein-insertion and membrane stability in our model lipid bilayer systems.

  9. VAMP-1: a synaptic vesicle-associated integral membrane protein.

    PubMed

    Trimble, W S; Cowan, D M; Scheller, R H

    1988-06-01

    Several proteins are associated with, or are integral components of, the lipid bilayer that forms the delineating membrane of neuronal synaptic vesicles. To characterize these molecules, we used a polyclonal antiserum raised against purified cholinergic synaptic vesicles from Torpedo to screen a cDNA expression library constructed from mRNA of the electromotor nucleus. One clone encodes VAMP-1 (vesicle-associated membrane protein 1), a nervous-system-specific protein of 120 amino acids whose primary sequence can be divided into three domains: a proline-rich amino terminus, a highly charged internal region, and a hydrophobic carboxyl-terminal domain that is predicted to comprise a membrane anchor. Tryptic digestion of intact and lysed vesicles suggests that the protein faces the cytoplasm, where it may play a role in packaging, transport, or release of neurotransmitters. PMID:3380805

  10. Ultrafast permeation of water through protein-based membranes.

    PubMed

    Peng, Xinsheng; Jin, Jian; Nakamura, Yoshimichi; Ohno, Takahisa; Ichinose, Izumi

    2009-06-01

    Pressure-driven filtration by porous membranes is widely used in the production of drinking water from ground and surface water. Permeation theory predicts that filtration rate is proportional to the pressure difference across the filtration membrane and inversely proportional to the thickness of the membrane. However, these membranes need to be able to withstand high water fluxes and pressures, which means that the active separation layers in commercial filtration systems typically have a thickness of a few tens to several hundreds of nanometres. Filtration performance might be improved by the use of ultrathin porous silicon membranes or carbon nanotubes immobilized in silicon nitride or polymer films, but these structures are difficult to fabricate. Here, we report a new type of filtration membrane made of crosslinked proteins that are mechanically robust and contain channels with diameters of less than 2.2 nm. We find that a 60-nm-thick membrane can concentrate aqueous dyes from fluxes up to 9,000 l h(-1) m(-2) bar(-1), which is approximately 1,000 times higher than the fluxes that can be withstood by commercial filtration membranes with similar rejection properties. Based on these results and molecular dynamics simulations, we propose that protein-surrounded channels with effective lengths of less than 5.8 nm can separate dye molecules while allowing the ultrafast permeation of water at applied pressures of less than 1 bar. PMID:19498395