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Sample records for agouti-related protein agrp

  1. Peptoid mimics of agouti related protein.

    PubMed

    Thompson, Darren A; Chai, Biao-Xin; Rood, Hilary L E; Siani, Michael A; Douglas, Nicholai R; Gantz, Ira; Millhauser, Glenn L

    2003-04-17

    The Agouti Related Protein (AGRP) is an endogenous antagonist of melanocortin-3 and -4 receptors, each of which plays a key role in body weight homeostasis. We designed a peptoid trimer based on AGRP 111-113 in which a single chiral atom is used to partially restrain the backbone structure. Peptoid 5 displaced both radiolabeled Nle4-alpha-MSH (IC(50)=3.1 microM) and AGRP (86-132) (IC(50)=1.9 microM) from the human melanocortin-4 receptor and functioned as an antagonist of alpha-MSH stimulated cAMP generation, thus providing an important lead in the development of AGRP mimetics.

  2. Characterization, tissue distribution, and regulation of agouti-related protein (AgRP), cocaine- and amphetamine-regulated transcript (CART) and neuropeptide Y (NPY) in Atlantic salmon (Salmo salar).

    PubMed

    Murashita, Koji; Kurokawa, Tadahide; Ebbesson, Lars O E; Stefansson, Sigurd O; Rønnestad, Ivar

    2009-06-01

    Key peptide hormones involved in the control of appetite in vertebrates were identified, their genes characterized and their regulation studied in Atlantic salmon: two agouti-related proteins (AgRP), cocaine- and amphetamine-regulated transcript (CART) and neuropeptide Y (NPY). The AgRP-1 and AgRP-2 genes encode prepro-proteins of 142- and 117-amino acids, respectively. The deduced AgRP-2 protein has 10 cysteine residues in the C-terminal polycysteine domain, while the AgRP-1 lacks the 6th and 7th cysteine residues observed in other species. AgRP-1 was principally expressed in the pituitary and skin, while AgRP-2 was highly expressed in the mid-gut, red muscle and gonads. The CART gene, encoding 118-amino acids, was strongly expressed in the brain and eye. In addition to salmon CART, we identified three to six variants of the CART gene in lower vertebrates by mining available databases. The salmon NPY gene, encoding 100-amino acids, was mainly expressed in the brain and eye. AgRP-1 and CART mRNA levels in the brain decreased after 6 days of fasting while AgRP-2 and NPY showed no significant change, suggesting that AgRP-1 and CART are involved in feeding regulation in Atlantic salmon. The identification of multiple variants of these appetite-regulating genes emphasizes the importance to further investigate the complex regulation of these genes.

  3. Ethanol-Induced Increase of Agouti-Related Protein (AgRP) Immunoreactivity in the Arcuate Nucleus of the Hypothalamus of C57BL/6J, but not 129/SvJ, Inbred Mice

    PubMed Central

    Cubero, Inmaculada; Navarro, Montserrat; Carvajal, Francisca; Lerma-Cabrera, Jose Manuel; Thiele, Todd E.

    2011-01-01

    Background The melanocortin (MC) system is composed of peptides that are cleaved from the polypeptide precursor, pro-opiomelanocortin (POMC). Previous research has shown that MC receptor (MCR) agonists reduce, and MCR antagonists increase, ethanol consumption in rats and mice. Consistently, genetic deletion of the endogenous MCR antagonist, agouti-related protein (AgRP), causes reductions of ethanol-reinforced lever pressing and binge-like ethanol drinking in C57BL/6J mice. Ethanol also has direct effects on the central MC system, as chronic exposure to an ethanol-containing diet causes significant reductions of α-melanocyte stimulating hormone (α-MSH) immunoreactivity in specific brain regions of Sprague-Dawley rats. Together, these observations suggest that the central MC system modulates neurobiological responses to ethanol. To further characterize the role of the MC system in responses to ethanol, here we compared AgRP and α-MSH immunoreactivity in response to an acute injection of saline or ethanol between high ethanol drinking C57BL/6J mice and moderate ethanol drinking 129/SvJ mice. Methods Mice received an intraperitoneal (i.p.) injection of ethanol (1.5 g/kg or 3.5 g/kg; mixed in 0.9% saline) or an equivolume of 0.9% saline. Two hours after injection, animals were sacrificed and their brains were processed for AgRP and α-MSH immunoreactivity. Results Results indicated that acute ethanol administration triggered a dose-dependent increase in AgRP immunoreactivity in the arcuate (ARC) of C57BL/6J mice, an effect that was not evident in the 129/SvJ strain. Although acute administration of ethanol did not influence α-MSH immunoreactivity, C57BL/6J mice had significantly greater overall α-MSH immunoreactivity in the ARC, dorsomedial, and lateral regions of the hypothalamus relative to the 129/SvJ strain. In contrast, C57BL/6J mice displayed significantly lower α-MSH immunoreactivity in the medial amygdala. Conclusions The results show that acute ethanol

  4. Increased food intake in growth hormone-transgenic common carp (Cyprinus carpio L.) may be mediated by upregulating Agouti-related protein (AgRP).

    PubMed

    Zhong, Chengrong; Song, Yanlong; Wang, Yaping; Zhang, Tanglin; Duan, Ming; Li, Yongming; Liao, Lanjie; Zhu, Zuoyan; Hu, Wei

    2013-10-01

    In fish, food intake and feeding behavior are crucial for survival, competition, growth and reproduction. Growth hormone (GH)-transgenic common carp exhibit an enhanced growth rate, increased food intake and higher feed conversion rate. However, the underlying molecular mechanisms of feeding regulation in GH-transgenic (TG) fish are not clear. In this study, we observed feeding behavior of TG and non-transgenic (NT) common carp, and analyzed the mRNA expression levels of NPY, AgRP I, orexin, POMC, CCK, and CART I in the hypothalamus and telencephalon after behavioral observation. We detected similar gene expression levels in the hypothalamus of TG and NT common carp, which had been cultured in the field at the same age. Furthermore, we tested the effects of GH on hypothalamus fragments in vitro to confirm our findings. We demonstrated that TG common carp displayed increased food intake and reduced food consumption time, which were associated with a marked increase in hypothalamic AgRP I mRNA expression. Our results suggest that elevated GH levels may influence food intake and feeding behavior by upregulating the hypothalamic orexigenic factor AgRP I in GH-transgenic common carp.

  5. Design, pharmacology, and NMR structure of a minimized cystine knot with agouti-related protein activity.

    PubMed

    Jackson, Pilgrim J; McNulty, Joseph C; Yang, Ying-Kui; Thompson, Darren A; Chai, Biaoxin; Gantz, Ira; Barsh, Gregory S; Millhauser, Glenn L

    2002-06-18

    The agouti-related protein (AGRP) is an endogenous antagonist of the melanocortin receptors MC3R and MC4R found in the hypothalamus and exhibits potent orexigenic activity. The cysteine-rich C-terminal domain of this protein, corresponding to AGRP(87-132), exhibits receptor binding affinity and antagonism equivalent to that of the full-length protein. The NMR structure of this active domain was recently determined and suggested that melanocortin receptor contacts were made primarily by two loops presented by a well-structured cystine knot domain within AGRP(87-132) [McNulty et al. (2001) Biochemistry 40, 15520-15527]. This hypothesis is tested here with NMR structure and activity studies of a 34-residue AGRP analogue designed to contain only the cystine knot domain. The designed miniprotein folds to a homogeneous product, retains the desired cystine knot architecture, functions as an antagonist, and maintains the melanocortin receptor pharmacological profile of AGRP(87-132). The AGRP-like activity of this molecule supports the hypothesis that indeed the cystine knot region possesses the melanocortin receptor contact points. Moreover, this potent AGRP analogue is synthetically accessible, may serve in the development of therapeutics for the treatment of diseases related to energy balance. and may also find use as a new reagent for probing melanocortin receptor structure and function.

  6. Structural and Molecular Evolutionary Analysis of Agouti and Agouti-Related Proteins

    PubMed Central

    Jackson, Pilgrim J.; Douglas, Nick R.; Chai, Biaoxin; Binkley, Jonathan; Sidow, Arend; Barsh, Gregory S.; Millhauser, Glenn L.

    2010-01-01

    Summary Agouti (ASIP) and Agouti-related protein (AgRP) are endogenous antagonists of melanocortin receptors that play critical roles in the regulation of pigmentation and energy balance, respectively, and which arose from a common ancestral gene early in vertebrate evolution. The N-terminal domain of ASIP facilitates antagonism by binding to an accessory receptor, but here we show that the N-terminal domain of AgRP has the opposite effect and acts as a prodomain that negatively regulates antagonist function. Computational analysis reveals similar patterns of evolutionary constraint in the ASIP and AgRP C-terminal domains, but fundamental differences between the N-terminal domains. These studies shed light on the relationships between regulation of pigmentation and body weight, and they illustrate how evolutionary structure function analysis can reveal both unique and common mechanisms of action for paralogous gene products. PMID:17185225

  7. Agouti-related protein increases food hoarding more than food intake in Siberian hamsters.

    PubMed

    Day, Diane E; Bartness, Timothy J

    2004-01-01

    Agouti-related protein (AgRP), an endogenous melanocortin 3/4 receptor antagonist, appears to play an important role in the control of food intake and energy balance because exogenous administration in rats and overexpression in mice result in hyperphagia and body mass gain. Furthermore, arcuate nucleus AgRP mRNA is increased with fasting in laboratory rats and mice and is decreased with refeeding. In Siberian hamsters, fasting also increases arcuate nucleus AgRP mRNA, but these animals increase food hoarding, rather than food intake with refeeding. Therefore, we tested whether exogenous AgRP increased food hoarding in this species. Hamsters were trained in a hoarding/foraging apparatus to run a programmed number of wheel revolutions to earn food pellets. Four doses of AgRP-(83-132) or vehicle were injected into the third ventricle at the beginning of the dark phase, and food hoarding, food intake, and foraging were measured at various time points subsequently. Overall, food hoarding was stimulated as much as 10 times more than food intake, and both responses occurred as early as 1 h after injection. Food hoarding was increased the greatest at the lowest dose (0.1 nmol), whereas food intake was increased the greatest at the second lowest dose (1 nmol). Food intake and especially food hoarding were increased up to seven days after the AgRP injections. Foraging was increased at all AgRP doses except the highest dose (100 nmol). These results suggest that AgRP triggers the search for food in this species, and once they find it, hoarding predominates over eating.

  8. Plasma agouti-related protein levels in women with anorexia nervosa.

    PubMed

    Moriya, Junko; Takimoto, Yoshiyuki; Yoshiuchi, Kazuhiro; Shimosawa, Tatsuo; Akabayashi, Akira

    2006-10-01

    Agouti-related protein (AGRP) is the competitive antagonist of alpha-melanocyte stimulating hormone (alpha-MSH) located at melanocortin receptors 3 and 4 (MC3R and MC4R), and also acts as an MC4R inverse agonist. Hypothalamic AGRP controls food intake and body weight in rodents. It has also been found in human plasma. To study the possibility of disturbances in melanocortin receptor-related peptides in eating disorders, plasma AGRP, alpha-MSH, and leptin levels were measured in 18 female patients with anorexia nervosa (AN) (age, 23.5+/-7.1 yr; body mass index (BMI) 14.5+/-1.8 kg/m(2)) and 17 age-matched female controls (age, 25.8+/-3.9 yr; BMI 20.2+/-1.6 kg/m(2)). Blood samples were collected after overnight fasting, and plasma peptides levels were measured using ELISA. Plasma AGRP levels increased significantly in AN patients when compared with controls (P<0.01) while plasma alpha-MSH levels were not significantly different. Plasma leptin levels decreased significantly in AN patients when compared with controls (P<0.001). In addition, plasma AGRP levels were negatively correlated with leptin (r=-0.41, P<0.01) and BMI (r=-0.40, P<0.05) in all subjects. In conclusion, plasma AGRP elevation may be related to energy homeostasis disturbance in AN, and in addition to leptin, peripheral AGRP levels could be used as a nutritional marker in AN patients.

  9. Proopiomelanocortin, agouti-related protein, and leptin in human cerebrospinal fluid: correlations with body weight and adiposity

    PubMed Central

    Page-Wilson, Gabrielle; Meece, Kana; White, Anne; Rosenbaum, Michael; Leibel, Rudolph L.; Smiley, Richard

    2015-01-01

    Leptin and its neuronal targets, which produce proopiomelanocortin (POMC) and agouti-related protein (AgRP), regulate energy balance. This study characterized leptin, POMC, and AgRP in the cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) of 47 healthy human subjects, 23 lean and 24 overweight/obese (OW/OB), as related to BMI, adiposity, plasma leptin, soluble leptin receptor (s-OB-R), and insulin. POMC was measured since the POMC prohormone is the predominant POMC peptide in CSF and correlates with hypothalamic POMC in rodents. Plasma AgRP was similarly characterized. CSF leptin was 83-fold lower than in plasma and correlated strongly with BMI, body fat, and insulin. The relative amount of leptin transported into CSF declined with increasing BMI, ranging from 4.5 to 0.52%, consistent with a saturable transport mechanism. CSF sOB-R was 78-fold lower than in plasma and correlated negatively with plasma and CSF leptin. CSF POMC was higher in lean vs. OW/OB subjects (P < 0.001) and correlated negatively with CSF leptin (r = −0.60, P < 0.001) and with plasma leptin, insulin, BMI, and adiposity. CSF AgRP was not different in lean vs. OW/OB; however, plasma AgRP was higher in lean subjects (P = 0.001) and correlated negatively with BMI, adiposity, leptin, insulin, and HOMA (P < 0.005). Thus, CSF measurements may provide useful biomarkers for brain leptin and POMC activity. The striking negative correlation between CSF leptin and POMC could be secondary to leptin resistance and/or neuronal changes associated with obesity but may also indicate that POMC plays a primary role in regulating body weight and adiposity. The role of plasma AgRP as a neuroendocrine biomarker deserves further study. PMID:26152765

  10. Peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor γ controls ingestive behavior, agouti-related protein, and neuropeptide Y mRNA in the arcuate hypothalamus.

    PubMed

    Garretson, John T; Teubner, Brett J W; Grove, Kevin L; Vazdarjanova, Almira; Ryu, Vitaly; Bartness, Timothy J

    2015-03-18

    Peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor γ (PPARγ) is clinically targeted for type II diabetes treatment; however, rosiglitazone (ROSI), a PPARγ agonist, increases food intake and body/fat mass as side-effects. Mechanisms for these effects and the role of PPARγ in feeding are not understood. Therefore, we tested this role in Siberian hamsters, a model of human energy balance, and C57BL/6 mice. We tested the following: (1) how ROSI and/or GW9662 (2-chloro-5-nitro-N-phenylbenzamide; PPARγ antagonist) injected intraperitoneally or into the third ventricle (3V) affected Siberian hamster feeding behaviors; (2) whether food deprivation (FD) co-increases agouti-related protein (AgRP) and PPARγ mRNA expression in Siberian hamsters and mice; (3) whether intraperitoneally administered ROSI increases AgRP and NPY in ad libitum-fed animals; (4) whether intraperitoneally administered PPARγ antagonism blocks FD-induced increases in AgRP and NPY; and finally, (5) whether intraperitoneally administered PPARγ modulation affects plasma ghrelin. Third ventricular and intraperitoneally administered ROSI increased food hoarding and intake for 7 d, an effect attenuated by 3V GW9662, and also prevented (intraperitoneal) FD-induced feeding. FD hamsters and mice increased AgRP within the arcuate hypothalamic nucleus with concomitant increases in PPARγ exclusively within AgRP/NPY neurons. ROSI increased AgRP and NPY similarly to FD, and GW9662 prevented FD-induced increases in AgRP and NPY in both species. Neither ROSI nor GW9662 affected plasma ghrelin. Thus, we demonstrated that PPARγ activation is sufficient to trigger food hoarding/intake, increase AgRP/NPY, and possibly is necessary for FD-induced increases in feeding and AgRP/NPY. These findings provide initial evidence that FD-induced increases in AgRP/NPY may be a direct PPARγ-dependent process that controls ingestive behaviors.

  11. [Participation of Agouti related peptide in machanisms of wakefulness-sleep cycle regulation].

    PubMed

    Romanova, I V; Mikhrina, A L

    2013-01-01

    Agouti-related protein (AGRP) is expresses in hypothalamic neurons in human and animals. Immunohistochemical study in rats Wistar rats demonstrates significant changes AGRP optical density in the neurons of arcuate hypothalamic nucleus as well as in processes in the hypothalamus and nucleus accumbens after the 6 hours of sleep deprivation (increase) and after 2 hours of post-deprivative sleep (decrease). Comparison of these results with earlier obtained shows the opposite trend changes in AGRP optical density and speed limiting enzyme of dopamine synthesis-tyrosine hydroxylase in the hypothalamus and in striatonigral system. The increase of AGRP was accompanied by a decrease of tyrosine hydroxylase and the decrease of AGRP, apposite, it increases. The obtained data demonstrate the role ofAGRP as a modulator of the functional activity of the dopaminergic brain neurons. The problem of the relationship of various functions of organism (food behavior, sleep, stress) is discusses by their participation in the regulation of the same neurotransmitter systems.

  12. The early origin of melanocortin receptors, agouti-related peptide, agouti signalling peptide, and melanocortin receptor-accessory proteins, with emphasis on pufferfishes, elephant shark, lampreys, and amphioxus.

    PubMed

    Västermark, Ake; Schiöth, Helgi B

    2011-06-11

    There are conflicting theories about the evolution of melanocortin MC receptors while only few studies have addressed the evolution of agouti-related peptide (AgRP) and agouti signalling peptide (ASIP), which are antagonists at the melanocortin receptors (MCRs), or the melanocortin MC(2) receptor accessory proteins (MRAP1 and MRAP2). Previously we have cloned melanocortin MC receptors (MC(a) and MC(b)) genes in river lamprey and here we identify orthologues to these melanocortin MC receptor sequences in the sea lamprey. We investigate the putative presence of the melanocortin MC receptor genes in lancelet (amphioxus; Branchiostoma floridae) but we find it unlikely that such gene exists, due to a sharp drop in sequence similarity beyond sequence clusters of known receptors. We show the presence of AgRP and ASIP in elephant shark, a cartilaginous fish belonging to the subclass of Elasmobranchii. However, we do not find any of these genes in lamprey or lancelet after detailed analysis of both targeted and whole proteome regular expression scans. We found MRAP2, but not MRAP1, to be present in elephant shark and sea lamprey while Fugu (T. rubripes) has both genes. This study shows that the most ancient presence of these melanocortin-related sequences is found in elephant shark and lampreys considering the current available sequence data.

  13. Chronic central infusion of ghrelin increases hypothalamic neuropeptide Y and Agouti-related protein mRNA levels and body weight in rats.

    PubMed

    Kamegai, J; Tamura, H; Shimizu, T; Ishii, S; Sugihara, H; Wakabayashi, I

    2001-11-01

    Ghrelin, an endogenous ligand for the growth hormone secretagogue receptor (GHS-R), was originally purified from the rat stomach. Like the synthetic growth hormone secretagogues (GHSs), ghrelin specifically releases growth hormone (GH) after intravenous administration. Also consistent with the central actions of GHSs, ghrelin-immunoreactive cells were shown to be located in the hypothalamic arcuate nucleus as well as the stomach. Recently, we showed that a single central administration of ghrelin increased food intake and hypothalamic agouti-related protein (AGRP) gene expression in rodents, and the orexigenic effect of this peptide seems to be independent of its GH-releasing activity. However, the effect of chronic infusion of ghrelin on food consumption and body weight and their possible mechanisms have not been elucidated. In this study, we determined the effects of chronic intracerebroventricular treatment with ghrelin on metabolic factors and on neuropeptide genes that are expressed in hypothalamic neurons that have been previously shown to express the GHS-R and to regulate food consumption. Chronic central administration of rat ghrelin (1 microg/rat every 12 h for 72 h) significantly increased food intake and body weight. However, it did not affect plasma insulin, glucose, leptin, or GH concentrations. We also found that chronic central administration of ghrelin increased both neuropeptide Y (NPY) mRNA levels (151.0 +/- 10.1% of saline-treated controls; P < 0.05) and AGRP mRNA levels (160.0 +/- 22.5% of saline-treated controls; P < 0.05) in the arcuate nucleus. Thus, the primary hypothalamic targets of ghrelin are NPY/AGRP-containing neurons, and ghrelin is a newly discovered orexigenic peptide in the brain and stomach.

  14. Cerebrospinal Fluid Levels of Leptin, Proopiomelanocortin, and Agouti-Related Protein in Human Pregnancy: Evidence for Leptin Resistance

    PubMed Central

    Page-Wilson, Gabrielle; Reitman-Ivashkov, Elena; Meece, Kana; White, Anne; Rosenbaum, Michael; Smiley, Richard M.

    2013-01-01

    Context: Leptin suppresses appetite by modulating the expression of hypothalamic neuropeptides including proopiomelanocortin (POMC) and agouti-related peptide (AgRP). Yet during pregnancy, caloric consumption increases despite elevated plasma leptin levels. Design and Participants: To investigate this paradox, we measured leptin and soluble leptin receptor in plasma and leptin, POMC, and AgRP in cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) from 21 fasting pregnant women before delivery by cesarean section at a university hospital and from 14 fasting nonpregnant women. Results: Prepregnancy body mass index was 24.6 ± 1.1 (se) vs. 31.3 ± 1.3 at term vs. 26.5 ± 1.6 kg/m2 in controls. Plasma leptin (32.9 ± 4.6 vs. 16.7 ± 3.0 ng/ml) and soluble leptin receptor (30.9 ± 2.3 vs. 22.1 ± 1.4 ng/ml) levels were significantly higher in pregnant women. However, mean CSF leptin did not differ between the two groups (283 ± 34 vs. 311 ± 32 pg/ml), consistent with a relative decrease in leptin transport into CSF during pregnancy. Accordingly, the CSF/plasma leptin percentage was 1.0 ± 0.01% in pregnant subjects vs. 2.1 ± 0.2% in controls (P < 0.0001). Mean CSF AgRP was significantly higher in pregnant subjects (32.3 ± 2.7 vs. 23.5 ± 2.5 pg/ml; P = 0.03). Mean CSF POMC was not significantly different in pregnant subjects (200 ± 13.6 vs. 229 ± 17.3 fmol/ml; P = 0.190). However, the mean AgRP/POMC ratio was significantly higher among pregnant women (P = 0.003), consistent with an overall decrease in melanocortin tone favoring increased food intake during pregnancy. Conclusions: These data demonstrate that despite peripheral hyperleptinemia, positive energy balance is achieved during pregnancy by a relative decrease in central leptin concentrations and resistance to leptin's effects on target neuropeptides that regulate energy balance. PMID:23118421

  15. Novel hypophysiotropic AgRP2 neurons and pineal cells revealed by BAC transgenesis in zebrafish

    PubMed Central

    Shainer, Inbal; Buchshtab, Adi; Hawkins, Thomas A.; Wilson, Stephen W.; Cone, Roger D.; Gothilf, Yoav

    2017-01-01

    The neuropeptide agouti-related protein (AgRP) is expressed in the arcuate nucleus of the mammalian hypothalamus and plays a key role in regulating food consumption and energy homeostasis. Fish express two agrp genes in the brain: agrp1, considered functionally homologous with the mammalian AgRP, and agrp2. The role of agrp2 and its relationship to agrp1 are not fully understood. Utilizing BAC transgenesis, we generated transgenic zebrafish in which agrp1- and agrp2-expressing cells can be visualized and manipulated. By characterizing these transgenic lines, we showed that agrp1-expressing neurons are located in the ventral periventricular hypothalamus (the equivalent of the mammalian arcuate nucleus), projecting throughout the hypothalamus and towards the preoptic area. The agrp2 gene was expressed in the pineal gland in a previously uncharacterized subgroup of cells. Additionally, agrp2 was expressed in a small group of neurons in the preoptic area that project directly towards the pituitary and form an interface with the pituitary vasculature, suggesting that preoptic AgRP2 neurons are hypophysiotropic. We showed that direct synaptic connection can exist between AgRP1 and AgRP2 neurons in the hypothalamus, suggesting communication and coordination between AgRP1 and AgRP2 neurons and, therefore, probably also between the processes they regulate. PMID:28317906

  16. Electroacupuncture Improves Insulin Resistance by Reducing Neuroprotein Y/Agouti-Related Protein Levels and Inhibiting Expression of Protein Tyrosine Phosphatase 1B in Diet-induced Obese Rats.

    PubMed

    Liu, Xia; He, Jun-Feng; Qu, Ya-Ting; Liu, Zhi-Jun; Pu, Qing-Yang; Guo, Sheng-Tong; Du, Jia; Jiang, Peng-Fei

    2016-04-01

    Electroacupuncture (EA) has been shown to exert beneficial effects on obesity, but the mechanism is unclear. This study investigated the effects of EA on diet-induced obese (DIO) rats. Fifty male Sprague-Dawley rats were randomly divided into low-fat diet (LFD, 10 rats) and high-fat diet (HFD, 40 rats) groups. After the DIO models had been established, successful model rats were randomly divided into HFD, EA, and orlistat (OLST) groups. The EA group received EA at Zusanli (ST36) and Quchi (LI11) for 20 minutes once per day for 28 days. The OLST group was treated with orlistat by gavage. The body weight, homeostasis model assessment-insulin resistance index, adipocyte diameters, and neuroprotein Y/agouti-related protein and protein tyrosine phosphatase 1B levels were significantly lower in the EA group than in the HFD group. The rats of the OLST group showed watery stools and yellow hairs whereas those of the EA group had regular stools and sleek coats. The effect of EA on weight loss may be related to improved insulin resistance caused by changes in the adipocyte size and by reductions in the expressions of neuroprotein Y/agouti-related protein and protein tyrosine phosphatase 1B. This study indicates that EA may be a better method of alternative therapy for treating obesity and other metabolic diseases.

  17. The high glycemic index diet was an independent predictor to explain changes in agouti-related protein in obese adolescents.

    PubMed

    Dal Molin Netto, Bárbara; Landi Masquio, Deborah Cristina; Da Silveira Campos, Raquel Munhoz; De Lima Sanches, Priscila; Campos Corgosinho, Flavia; Tock, Lian; Missae Oyama, Lila; Túlio de Mello, Marco; Tufik, Sergio; Dâmaso, Ana Raimunda

    2014-02-01

    La Dieta de alto índice glucémico es un predictor independiente para explicar los cambios en la proteína relacionada al agouti en adolescentes obesos. Introducción y objetivos: El papel de la dieta de índice glucémico (GI) en el control de los factores orexigénicos y anorexígenos del balance de energía todavía no está claro. El presente estudio tuvo como objetivo evaluar si la dieta habitual, de acuerdo con diferentes alimentos con IG, ejerce influencia sobre la regulación de los marcadores del balance de energía y los efectos de la intervención interdisciplinaria en adolescentes obesos. Métodos: Un total de 55 adolescentes obesos, con edades de 14 a 19 años, han sido sometidos a un año de tratamiento interdisciplinario y se dividieron en dos grupos, de acuerdo al patrón de dieta predominante de la ingesta de alimentos: el grupo IG alto (H-GI; n = 29) y GI moderada/bajo grupo (M/L-GI, n = 26). Resultados: La concentración de orexigenic factor de AgRP (p < 0,01), la grasa visceral (p = 0,04) y la relación visceral/ subcutánea (p = 0,03) fueron mayores en el grupo de HGI en comparación con el grupo M/L-GI. Por otra parte, el consumo habitual de alimentos H-GI fue un predictor independiente para explicar los cambios en las concentraciones de AgRP. Después de un año de tratamiento interdisciplinario, los adolescentes presentan una reducción significativa en el peso corporal, la grasa corporal total (%), visceral y la grasa subcutánea y el HOMA-IR, así como un aumento significativo de la masa libre de grasa (%). Conclusiones: Nuestros resultados pueden sugerir que la dieta H-GI habitual podría upregulate vías orexigénicos, contribuyendo al círculo vicioso entre las dietas indeseables, desregula el equilibrio energético y predisponen a la obesidad. Uno por otro lado, un año de tratamiento interdisciplinario puede perfil metabólico mejora significativa y la obesidad central en los adolescentes.

  18. Agouti Related Peptide Secreted Via Human Mesenchymal Stem Cells Upregulates Proteasome Activity in an Alzheimer’s Disease Model

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Na Kyung; Park, Sang Eon; Kwon, Soo Jin; Shim, Sangmi; Byeon, Yeji; Kim, Jong-Hwa; Na, Duk L.; Chang, Jong Wook

    2017-01-01

    The activity of the ubiquitin proteasome system (UPS) is downregulated in aggregation diseases such as Alzheimer’s disease (AD). In this study, we investigated the therapeutic potential of the Agouti-related peptide (AgRP), which is secreted by human mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs), in terms of its effect on the regulation of proteasome activity in AD. When SH-SY5Y human neuroblastoma cells were co-cultured with MSCs isolated from human Wharton’s Jelly (WJ-MSC), their proteasome activity was significantly upregulated. Further analysis of the conditioned media after co-culture allowed us to identify significant concentrations of a neuropeptide, called AgRP. The stereotactic delivery of either WJ-MSCs or AgRP into the hippocampi of C57BL6/J and 5XFAD mice induced a significant increase of proteasome activity and suppressed the accumulation of ubiquitin-conjugated proteins. Collectively, these findings suggest strong therapeutic potential for WJ-MSCs and AgRP to enhance proteasome activity, thereby potentially reducing abnormal protein aggregation and delaying the clinical progression of various neurodegenerative diseases. PMID:28051110

  19. PDK1-Foxo1 in Agouti-Related Peptide Neurons Regulates Energy Homeostasis by Modulating Food Intake and Energy Expenditure

    PubMed Central

    Cao, Yongheng; Nakata, Masanori; Okamoto, Shiki; Takano, Eisuke; Yada, Toshihiko; Minokoshi, Yasuhiko; Hirata, Yukio; Nakajima, Kazunori; Iskandar, Kristy; Hayashi, Yoshitake; Ogawa, Wataru; Barsh, Gregory S.; Hosoda, Hiroshi; Kangawa, Kenji; Itoh, Hiroshi; Noda, Tetsuo; Kasuga, Masato; Nakae, Jun

    2011-01-01

    Insulin and leptin intracellular signaling pathways converge and act synergistically on the hypothalamic phosphatidylinositol-3-OH kinase/3-phosphoinositide-dependent protein kinase 1 (PDK1). However, little is known about whether PDK1 in agouti-related peptide (AGRP) neurons contributes to energy homeostasis. We generated AGRP neuron-specific PDK1 knockout (AGRPPdk1−/−) mice and mice with selective expression of transactivation-defective Foxo1 (Δ256Foxo1AGRPPdk1−/−). The AGRPPdk1−/− mice showed reductions in food intake, body length, and body weight. The Δ256Foxo1AGRPPdk1−/− mice showed increased body weight, food intake, and reduced locomotor activity. After four weeks of calorie-restricted feeding, oxygen consumption and locomotor activity were elevated in AGRPPdk1−/− mice and reduced in Δ256Foxo1AGRPPdk1−/− mice. In vitro, ghrelin-induced changes in [Ca2+]i and inhibition of ghrelin by leptin were significantly attenuated in AGRPPdk1−/− neurons compared to control neurons. However, ghrelin-induced [Ca2+]i changes and leptin inhibition were restored in Δ256Foxo1AGRPPdk1−/− mice. These results suggested that PDK1 and Foxo1 signaling pathways play important roles in the control of energy homeostasis through AGRP-independent mechanisms. PMID:21694754

  20. Hypothalamic KLF4 mediates leptin's effects on food intake via AgRP.

    PubMed

    Imbernon, Monica; Sanchez-Rebordelo, Estrella; Gallego, Rosalia; Gandara, Marina; Lear, Pamela; Lopez, Miguel; Dieguez, Carlos; Nogueiras, Ruben

    2014-07-01

    Krüppel-like factor 4 (KLF4) is a zinc-finger-type transcription factor expressed in a range of tissues that plays multiple functions. We report that hypothalamic KLF4 represents a new transcription factor specifically modulating agouti-related protein (AgRP) expression in vivo. Hypothalamic KLF4 colocalizes with AgRP neurons and is modulated by nutritional status and leptin. Over-expression of KLF4 in the hypothalamic arcuate nucleus (ARC) induces food intake and increases body weight through the specific stimulation of AgRP, as well as blunting leptin sensitivity in lean rats independent of forkhead box protein 01 (FoxO1). Down-regulation of KLF4 in the ARC inhibits fasting-induced food intake in both lean and diet-induced obese (DIO) rats. Silencing KLF4, however, does not, on its own, enhance peripheral leptin sensitivity in DIO rats.

  1. Gs-coupled GPCR signalling in AgRP neurons triggers sustained increase in food intake

    PubMed Central

    Nakajima, Ken-ichiro; Cui, Zhenzhong; Li, Chia; Meister, Jaroslawna; Cui, Yinghong; Fu, Ou; Smith, Adam S.; Jain, Shalini; Lowell, Bradford B.; Krashes, Michael J.; Wess, Jürgen

    2016-01-01

    Agouti-related peptide (AgRP) neurons of the hypothalamus play a key role in regulating food intake and body weight, by releasing three different orexigenic molecules: AgRP; GABA; and neuropeptide Y. AgRP neurons express various G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) with different coupling properties, including Gs-linked GPCRs. At present, the potential role of Gs-coupled GPCRs in regulating the activity of AgRP neurons remains unknown. Here we show that the activation of Gs-coupled receptors expressed by AgRP neurons leads to a robust and sustained increase in food intake. We also provide detailed mechanistic data linking the stimulation of this class of receptors to the observed feeding phenotype. Moreover, we show that this pathway is clearly distinct from other GPCR signalling cascades that are operative in AgRP neurons. Our data suggest that drugs able to inhibit this signalling pathway may become useful for the treatment of obesity. PMID:26743492

  2. Nicotine withdrawal increases body weight, neuropeptide Y and Agouti-related protein expression in the hypothalamus and decreases uncoupling protein-3 expression in the brown adipose tissue in high-fat fed mice.

    PubMed

    Fornari, Alice; Pedrazzi, Patrizia; Lippi, Giordano; Picciotto, Marina R; Zoli, Michele; Zini, Isabella

    2007-01-03

    Nicotine is known to decrease body weight in normal rodents and human smokers, whereas nicotine withdrawal or smoking cessation can increase body weight. We have found that mice fed a high fat diet do not show the anorectic effect of chronic nicotine treatment, but do increase their body weight following nicotine withdrawal. Nicotine withdrawal is accompanied by increased expression of the orexigenic peptides neuropeptide Y and Agouti-related protein in the hypothalamus, and decreased expression of the metabolic protein uncoupling protein-3 in brown adipose tissue. These data suggest that diet can influence the ability of nicotine to modulate body weight regulation and demonstrate that chronic nicotine exposure results in adaptive changes in central and peripheral molecules which regulate feeding behavior and energy metabolism.

  3. A Ribosomal Protein AgRPS3aE from Halophilic Aspergillus glaucus Confers Salt Tolerance in Heterologous Organisms

    PubMed Central

    Liang, Xilong; Liu, Yiling; Xie, Lixia; Liu, Xiaodan; Wei, Yi; Zhou, Xiaoyang; Zhang, Shihong

    2015-01-01

    High salt in soils is one of the abiotic stresses that significantly reduces crop yield, although saline lands are considered potential resources arable for agriculture. Currently, genetic engineering for enhancing salt tolerance is being tested as an efficient and viable strategy for crop improvement. We previously characterized a large subunit of the ribosomal protein RPL44, which is involved in osmotic stress in the extremely halophilic fungus Aspergillus glaucus. Here, we screened another ribosomal protein (AgRPS3aE) that also produced high-salt tolerance in yeast. Bioinformatics analysis indicated that AgRPS3aE encodes a 29.2 kDa small subunit of a ribosomal protein belonging to the RPS3Ae family in eukaryotes. To further confirm its protective function against salinity, we expressed AgRPS3aE in three heterologous systems, the filamentous fungus Magnaporthe oryzae and two model plants Arabidopsis and tobacco. Overexpression of AgRPS3aE in all tested transformants significantly alleviated stress symptoms compared with controls, suggesting that AgRPS3aE functions not only in fungi but also in plants. Considering that ribosomal proteins are housekeeping components in organisms from prokaryotes to eukaryotes, we propose that AgRPS3aE is one of the optimal genes for improving high-salt tolerance in crops. PMID:25642759

  4. Third ventricular coinjection of subthreshold doses of NPY and AgRP stimulate food hoarding and intake and neural activation.

    PubMed

    Teubner, Brett J W; Keen-Rhinehart, Erin; Bartness, Timothy J

    2012-01-01

    We previously demonstrated that 3rd ventricular (3V) neuropeptide Y (NPY) or agouti-related protein (AgRP) injection potently stimulates food foraging/hoarding/intake in Siberian hamsters. Because NPY and AgRP are highly colocalized in arcuate nucleus neurons in this and other species, we tested whether subthreshold doses of NPY and AgRP coinjected into the 3V stimulates food foraging, hoarding, and intake, and/or neural activation [c-Fos immunoreactivity (c-Fos-ir)] in hamsters housed in a foraging/hoarding apparatus. In the behavioral experiment, each hamster received four 3V treatments by using subthreshold doses of NPY and AgRP for all behaviors: 1) NPY, 2) AgRP, 3) NPY+AgRP, and 4) saline with a 7-day washout period between treatments. Food foraging, intake, and hoarding were measured 1, 2, 4, and 24 h and 2 and 3 days postinjection. Only when NPY and AgRP were coinjected was food intake and hoarding increased. After identical treatment in separate animals, c-Fos-ir was assessed at 90 min and 14 h postinjection, times when food intake (0-1 h) and hoarding (4-24 h) were uniquely stimulated. c-Fos-ir was increased in several hypothalamic nuclei previously shown to be involved in ingestive behaviors and the central nucleus of the amygdala (CeA), but only in NPY+AgRP-treated animals (90 min and 14 h: magno- and parvocellular regions of the hypothalamic paraventricular nucleus and perifornical area; 14 h only: CeA and sub-zona incerta). These results suggest that NPY and AgRP interact to stimulate food hoarding and intake at distinct times, perhaps released as a cocktail naturally with food deprivation to stimulate these behaviors.

  5. Post-embryonic ablation of AgRP neurons in mice leads to a lean, hypophagic phenotype.

    PubMed

    Bewick, Gavin A; Gardiner, James V; Dhillo, Waljit S; Kent, Aysha S; White, Nicholas E; Webster, Zoe; Ghatei, Mohammad A; Bloom, Stephen R

    2005-10-01

    Agouti-related protein (AgRP) and neuropeptide Y (NPY) are colocalized in arcuate nucleus (arcuate) neurons implicated in the regulation of energy balance. Both AgRP and NPY stimulate food intake when administered into the third ventricle and are up-regulated in states of negative energy balance. However, mice with targeted deletion of either NPY or AgRP or both do not have major alterations in energy homeostasis. Using bacterial artificial chromosome (BAC) transgenesis we have targeted expression of a neurotoxic CAG expanded form of ataxin-3 to AgRP-expressing neurons in the arcuate. This resulted in a 47% loss of AgRP neurons by 16 weeks of age, a significantly reduced body weight, (wild-type mice (WT) 34.7+/-0.7 g vs. transgenic mice (Tg) 28.6+/-0.6 g, P<0.001), and reduced food intake (WT 5.0+/-0.2 vs. Tg 3.6+/-0.1 g per day, P<0.001). Transgenic mice had significantly reduced total body fat, plasma insulin, and increased brown adipose tissue UCP1 expression. Transgenic mice failed to respond to peripherally administered ghrelin but retained sensitivity to PYY 3-36. These data suggest that postembryonic partial loss of AgRP/NPY neurons leads to a lean, hypophagic phenotype.

  6. The neuroendocrine circuitry controlled by POMC, MSH, and AGRP.

    PubMed

    Biebermann, Heike; Kühnen, Peter; Kleinau, Gunnar; Krude, Heiko

    2012-01-01

    Obesity is one of the most challenging health problems worldwide. Over the past few decades, our knowledge concerning mechanisms of weight regulation has increased tremendously leading to the identification of the leptin-melanocortin pathway. The filling level of energy stores is signaled to the brain, and the information is integrated by hypothalamic nuclei, resulting in a well-orchestrated response to food intake and energy expenditure to ensure constant body weight. One of the key players in this system is proopiomelanocortin (POMC), a precursor of a variety of neuropeptides. POMC-derived alpha- and beta-MSH play an important role in energy homeostasis by activating melanocortin receptors expressed in the arcuate nucleus (MC3R) and in the nucleus paraventricularis (MC4R). Activation of these two G protein-coupled receptors is antagonized by agouti-related peptide (AgRP). Naturally occurring mutations in this system were identified in patients suffering from common obesity as well as in patients demonstrating a phenotype of severe early-onset obesity, adrenal insufficiency, red hair, and pale skin. Detailed understanding of the complex system of POMC-AgRP-MC3R-MC4R and their interaction with other hypothalamic as well as peripheral signals is a prerequisite to combat the obesity epidemic.

  7. AgRP Neurons Control Systemic Insulin Sensitivity via Myostatin Expression in Brown Adipose Tissue.

    PubMed

    Steculorum, Sophie M; Ruud, Johan; Karakasilioti, Ismene; Backes, Heiko; Engström Ruud, Linda; Timper, Katharina; Hess, Martin E; Tsaousidou, Eva; Mauer, Jan; Vogt, Merly C; Paeger, Lars; Bremser, Stephan; Klein, Andreas C; Morgan, Donald A; Frommolt, Peter; Brinkkötter, Paul T; Hammerschmidt, Philipp; Benzing, Thomas; Rahmouni, Kamal; Wunderlich, F Thomas; Kloppenburg, Peter; Brüning, Jens C

    2016-03-24

    Activation of Agouti-related peptide (AgRP) neurons potently promotes feeding, and chronically altering their activity also affects peripheral glucose homeostasis. We demonstrate that acute activation of AgRP neurons causes insulin resistance through impairment of insulin-stimulated glucose uptake into brown adipose tissue (BAT). AgRP neuron activation acutely reprograms gene expression in BAT toward a myogenic signature, including increased expression of myostatin. Interference with myostatin activity improves insulin sensitivity that was impaired by AgRP neurons activation. Optogenetic circuitry mapping reveals that feeding and insulin sensitivity are controlled by both distinct and overlapping projections. Stimulation of AgRP → LHA projections impairs insulin sensitivity and promotes feeding while activation of AgRP → anterior bed nucleus of the stria terminalis (aBNST)vl projections, distinct from AgRP → aBNSTdm projections controlling feeding, mediate the effect of AgRP neuron activation on BAT-myostatin expression and insulin sensitivity. Collectively, our results suggest that AgRP neurons in mice induce not only eating, but also insulin resistance by stimulating expression of muscle-related genes in BAT, revealing a mechanism by which these neurons rapidly coordinate hunger states with glucose homeostasis.

  8. Linoleic acid and stearic acid elicit opposite effects on AgRP expression and secretion via TLR4-dependent signaling pathways in immortalized hypothalamic N38 cells.

    PubMed

    Wang, Songbo; Xiang, Nana; Yang, Liusong; Zhu, Canjun; Zhu, Xiaotong; Wang, Lina; Gao, Ping; Xi, Qianyun; Zhang, Yongliang; Shu, Gang; Jiang, Qingyan

    2016-03-18

    The regulation of food intake is a promising way to combat obesity. It has been implicated that various fatty acids exert different effects on food intake and body weight. However, the underlying mechanism remains poorly understood. The aim of the present study was to investigate the effects of linoleic acid (LA) and stearic acid (SA) on agouti-related protein (AgRP) expression and secretion in immortalized mouse hypothalamic N38 cells and to explore the likely underlying mechanisms. Our results demonstrated that LA inhibited, while SA stimulated AgRP expression and secretion of N38 cells in a dose-dependent manner. In addition, LA suppressed the protein expression of toll-like receptor 4 (TLR4), phosphorylation levels of JNK and IKKα/β, suggesting the inhibition of TLR4-dependent inflammation pathway. However, the above mentioned inhibitory effects of LA were eliminated by TLR4 agonist lipopolysaccharide (LPS). In contrast, SA promoted TLR4 protein expression and activated TLR4-dependent inflammation pathway, with elevated ratio of p-JNK/JNK. While TLR4 siRNA reversed the stimulatory effects of SA on AgRP expression and TLR4-dependent inflammation. Moreover, we found that TLR4 was also involved in LA-enhanced and SA-impaired leptin/insulin signal pathways in N38 cells. In conclusion, our findings indicated that LA elicited inhibitory while SA exerted stimulatory effects on AgRP expression and secretion via TLR4-dependent inflammation and leptin/insulin pathways in N38 cells. These data provided a better understanding of the mechanism underlying fatty acids-regulated food intake and suggested the potential role of long-chain unsaturated fatty acids such as LA in reducing food intake and treating obesity.

  9. Arcuate hypothalamic AgRP and putative POMC neurons show opposite changes in spiking across multiple timescales

    PubMed Central

    Mandelblat-Cerf, Yael; Ramesh, Rohan N; Burgess, Christian R; Patella, Paola; Yang, Zongfang; Lowell, Bradford B; Andermann, Mark L

    2015-01-01

    Agouti-related-peptide (AgRP) neurons—interoceptive neurons in the arcuate nucleus of the hypothalamus (ARC)—are both necessary and sufficient for driving feeding behavior. To better understand the functional roles of AgRP neurons, we performed optetrode electrophysiological recordings from AgRP neurons in awake, behaving AgRP-IRES-Cre mice. In free-feeding mice, we observed a fivefold increase in AgRP neuron firing with mounting caloric deficit in afternoon vs morning recordings. In food-restricted mice, as food became available, AgRP neuron firing dropped, yet remained elevated as compared to firing in sated mice. The rapid drop in spiking activity of AgRP neurons at meal onset may reflect a termination of the drive to find food, while residual, persistent spiking may reflect a sustained drive to consume food. Moreover, nearby neurons inhibited by AgRP neuron photostimulation, likely including satiety-promoting pro-opiomelanocortin (POMC) neurons, demonstrated opposite changes in spiking. Finally, firing of ARC neurons was also rapidly modulated within seconds of individual licks for liquid food. These findings suggest novel roles for antagonistic AgRP and POMC neurons in the regulation of feeding behaviors across multiple timescales. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.07122.001 PMID:26159614

  10. Hypothalamic Agouti-Related Peptide mRNA is Elevated During Natural and Stress-Induced Anorexia.

    PubMed

    Dunn, I C; Wilson, P W; D'Eath, R B; Boswell, T

    2015-09-01

    As part of their natural lives, animals can undergo periods of voluntarily reduced food intake and body weight (i.e. animal anorexias) that are beneficial for survival or breeding, such as during territorial behaviour, hibernation, migration and incubation of eggs. For incubation, a change in the defended level of body weight or 'sliding set point' appears to be involved, although the neural mechanisms reponsible for this are unknown. We investigated how neuropeptide gene expression in the arcuate nucleus of the domestic chicken responded to a 60-70% voluntary reduction in food intake measured both after incubation and after an environmental stressor involving transfer to unfamiliar housing. We hypothesised that gene expression would not change in these circumstances because the reduced food intake and body weight represented a defended level in birds with free access to food. Unexpectedly, we observed increased gene expression of the orexigenic peptide agouti-related peptide (AgRP) in both incubating and transferred animals compared to controls. Also pro-opiomelanocortin (POMC) mRNA was higher in incubating hens and significantly increased 6 days after exposure to the stressor. Conversely expression of neuropeptide Y and cocaine- and amphetamine-regulated transcript gene was unchanged in both experimental situations. We conclude that AgRP expression remains sensitive to the level of energy stores during natural anorexias, which is of adaptive advantage, although its normal orexigenic effects are over-ridden by inhibitory signals. In the case of stress-induced anorexia, increased POMC may contribute to this inhibitory role, whereas, for incubation, reduced feeding may also be associated with increased expression in the hypothalamus of the anorexigenic peptide vasoactive intestinal peptide.

  11. GABAergic signaling by AgRP neurons prevents anorexia via a melanocortin-independent mechanism

    PubMed Central

    Wu, Qi; Palmiter, Richard D.

    2011-01-01

    The hypothalamic arcuate nucleus contains two anatomically and functionally distinct populations of neurons – the agouti-related peptide (AgRP)- and pro-opiomelanocortin (POMC)-expressing neurons that integrate various nutritional, hormonal, and neuronal signals to regulate food intake and energy expenditure, and thereby help achieve energy homeostasis. AgRP neurons, also co-release neuropeptide Y and γ-aminobutyric acid (GABA) to promote feeding and inhibit metabolism through at least three possible mechanisms: (1) suppression of the melanocortin signaling system through competitive binding of AgRP with the melanocortin 4 receptors; (2) neuropeptide Y-mediated inhibition of post-synaptic neurons that reside in hypothalamic nuclei; (3) GABAergic inhibition of POMC neurons in their post-synaptic targets including the parabrachial nucleus (parabrachial nucleus), a brainstem structure that relays gustatory and visceral sensory information. Acute ablation of AgRP neurons in adult mice by the action of diphtheria toxin (DT) results in precipitous reduction of food intake, and eventually leads to starvation within 6 days of DT treatment. Chronic delivery of bretazenil, a GABAA receptor partial agonist, into the parabrachial nucleus is sufficient to restore feeding and body weight when AgRP neurons are ablated, whereas chronic blockade of melanocortin 4 receptor signaling is inadequate. This review summarizes the physiological roles of a neural circuitry regulated by AgRP neurons in control of feeding behavior with particular emphasis of the GABA output to the parabrachial nucleus. We also describe a compensatory mechanism that is gradually engaged after ablation of AgRP neurons that allows mice to continue eating without them. PMID:21211531

  12. Dynamic GABAergic afferent modulation of AgRP neurons

    PubMed Central

    Garfield, Alastair S; Shah, Bhavik P; Burgess, Christian R; Li, Monica M; Li, Chia; Steger, Jennifer S; Madara, Joseph C; Campbell, John N; Kroeger, Daniel; Scammell, Thomas E; Tannous, Bakhos A; Myers, Martin G; Andermann, Mark L; Krashes, Michael J; Lowell, Bradford B

    2017-01-01

    Agouti-related peptide (AgRP) neurons of the arcuate nucleus of the hypothalamus (ARC) promote homeostatic feeding at times of caloric insufficiency, yet they are rapidly suppressed by food-related sensory cues prior to ingestion. Here we identify a highly selective inhibitory afferent to AgRP neurons that serves as a neural determinant of this rapid modulation. Specifically, GABAergic projections arising from the ventral compartment of the dorsomedial nucleus of the hypothalamus (vDMH) contribute to the pre-consummatory modulation of ARCAgRP neurons. In a manner reciprocal to ARCAgRP neurons, ARC-projecting leptin receptor (LepR)-expressing GABAergic DMH neurons exhibit rapid activation upon availability of food that additionally reflects the relative value of the food. Thus, DMHLepR neurons form part of the sensory network that relays real-time information about the nature and availability of food to dynamically modulate ARCAgRP neuron activity and feeding behavior. PMID:27643429

  13. An excitatory paraventricular nucleus to AgRP neuron circuit that drives hunger.

    PubMed

    Krashes, Michael J; Shah, Bhavik P; Madara, Joseph C; Olson, David P; Strochlic, David E; Garfield, Alastair S; Vong, Linh; Pei, Hongjuan; Watabe-Uchida, Mitsuko; Uchida, Naoshige; Liberles, Stephen D; Lowell, Bradford B

    2014-03-13

    Hunger is a hard-wired motivational state essential for survival. Agouti-related peptide (AgRP)-expressing neurons in the arcuate nucleus (ARC) at the base of the hypothalamus are crucial to the control of hunger. They are activated by caloric deficiency and, when naturally or artificially stimulated, they potently induce intense hunger and subsequent food intake. Consistent with their obligatory role in regulating appetite, genetic ablation or chemogenetic inhibition of AgRP neurons decreases feeding. Excitatory input to AgRP neurons is important in caloric-deficiency-induced activation, and is notable for its remarkable degree of caloric-state-dependent synaptic plasticity. Despite the important role of excitatory input, its source(s) has been unknown. Here, through the use of Cre-recombinase-enabled, cell-specific neuron mapping techniques in mice, we have discovered strong excitatory drive that, unexpectedly, emanates from the hypothalamic paraventricular nucleus, specifically from subsets of neurons expressing thyrotropin-releasing hormone (TRH) and pituitary adenylate cyclase-activating polypeptide (PACAP, also known as ADCYAP1). Chemogenetic stimulation of these afferent neurons in sated mice markedly activates AgRP neurons and induces intense feeding. Conversely, acute inhibition in mice with caloric-deficiency-induced hunger decreases feeding. Discovery of these afferent neurons capable of triggering hunger advances understanding of how this intense motivational state is regulated.

  14. Agouti-related peptide plays a critical role in leptin's effects on female puberty and reproduction

    PubMed Central

    Sheffer-Babila, Sharone; Sun, Yan; Israel, Davelene D.; Liu, Shun-Mei; Neal-Perry, Genevieve

    2013-01-01

    Deficient leptin signaling causes infertility via reduced activity of GnRH neurons, causing a hypogonadal state in both rodents and humans. Because GnRH neurons do not express leptin receptors, leptin's effect on GnRH neurons must be indirect. Neurons within the hypothalamic arcuate nucleus that coexpress AGRP and NPY are considered to be important intermediate neurons involved in leptin regulation of GnRH neurons. Previously, we reported that the absence of AGRP and haploinsufficiency of MC4R in leptin receptor mutant (Leprdb/db) females result in restoration of fertility and lactation despite the persistence of obesity and insulin resistance. The overarching hypothesis in the present study is that the absence or reduction of leptin's inhibition of AGRP/NPY neurons leads to suppression of GnRH release in cases of leptin signaling deficiency. Since TAC2 (NKB)-TAC3R signaling plays a role in puberty maturation and is modulated by metabolic status, the other aim of this study is to test whether TAC2/NKB neurons in ARC regulated by melanocortinergic signals herein affect leptin's action on puberty and reproduction. Our data showed that AGRP deficiency in Leprdb/db females restores normal timing of vaginal opening and estrous cycling, although uterine weight gain and mammary gland development are morphologically delayed. Nonetheless, Agrp−/− Leprdb/db females are fertile and sustain adequate nutrition of pups with lactation to weaning age. AGRP deficiency results in advanced vaginal opening in wild-type female mice. The postpubertal increase in hypothalamic TAC2 mRNA was not observed in Leprdb/db females, whereas AGRP deficiency restored it in Leprdb/db females. Additionally, MC4R activation with MTII induced FOS expression in TAC2 neurons, supporting the concept of melanocortinergic regulation of TAC2 neurons. These studies suggest that AGRP imposes an inhibitory effect on puberty and that TAC2 neurons may transmit melanocortinergic inhibition of GnRH neurons

  15. Glucose Alters Per2 Rhythmicity Independent of AMPK, Whereas AMPK Inhibitor Compound C Causes Profound Repression of Clock Genes and AgRP in mHypoE-37 Hypothalamic Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Oosterman, Johanneke E.; Belsham, Denise D.

    2016-01-01

    Specific neurons in the hypothalamus are regulated by peripheral hormones and nutrients to maintain proper metabolic control. It is unclear if nutrients can directly control clock gene expression. We have therefore utilized the immortalized, hypothalamic cell line mHypoE-37, which exhibits robust circadian rhythms of core clock genes. mHypoE-37 neurons were exposed to 0.5 or 5.5 mM glucose, comparable to physiological levels in the brain. Per2 and Bmal1 mRNAs were assessed every 3 hours over 36 hours. Incubation with 5.5 mM glucose significantly shortened the period and delayed the phase of Per2 mRNA levels, but had no effect on Bmal1. Glucose had no significant effect on phospho-GSK3β, whereas AMPK phosphorylation was altered. Thus, the AMPK inhibitor Compound C was utilized, and mRNA levels of Per2, Bmal1, Cryptochrome1 (Cry1), agouti-related peptide (AgRP), carnitine palmitoyltransferase 1C (Cpt1c), and O-linked N-acetylglucosamine transferase (Ogt) were measured. Remarkably, Compound C dramatically reduced transcript levels of Per2, Bmal1, Cry1, and AgRP, but not Cpt1c or Ogt. Because AMPK was not inhibited at the same time or concentrations as the clock genes, we suggest that the effect of Compound C on gene expression occurs through an AMPK-independent mechanism. The consequences of inhibition of the rhythmic expression of clock genes, and in turn downstream metabolic mediators, such as AgRP, could have detrimental effects on overall metabolic processes. Importantly, the effects of the most commonly used AMPK inhibitor Compound C should be interpreted with caution, considering its role in AMPK-independent repression of specific genes, and especially clock gene rhythm dysregulation. PMID:26784927

  16. Agrp neuron activity is required for alcohol-induced overeating

    PubMed Central

    Cains, Sarah; Blomeley, Craig; Kollo, Mihaly; Rácz, Romeo; Burdakov, Denis

    2017-01-01

    Alcohol intake associates with overeating in humans. This overeating is a clinical concern, but its causes are puzzling, because alcohol (ethanol) is a calorie-dense nutrient, and calorie intake usually suppresses brain appetite signals. The biological factors necessary for ethanol-induced overeating remain unclear, and societal causes have been proposed. Here we show that core elements of the brain's feeding circuits—the hypothalamic Agrp neurons that are normally activated by starvation and evoke intense hunger—display electrical and biochemical hyperactivity on exposure to dietary doses of ethanol in brain slices. Furthermore, by circuit-specific chemogenetic interference in vivo, we find that the Agrp cell activity is essential for ethanol-induced overeating in the absence of societal factors, in single-housed mice. These data reveal how a widely consumed nutrient can paradoxically sustain brain starvation signals, and identify a biological factor required for appetite evoked by alcohol. PMID:28072397

  17. Irisin in goldfish (Carassius auratus): Effects of irisin injections on feeding behavior and expression of appetite regulators, uncoupling proteins and lipoprotein lipase, and fasting-induced changes in FNDC5 expression.

    PubMed

    Butt, Zahndra Diann; Hackett, Jessica Dalton; Volkoff, Hélène

    2017-04-01

    Irisin is a peptide cleaved from the fibronectin type III domain containing protein 5 (FNDC5) gene that is secreted predominantly by muscle cells but also by other tissues including brain and intestine. In mammals, irisin has been shown to have thermogenic actions via the modulation of uncoupling proteins (UCPs) and to affect feeding and energy homeostasis via actions in brain, adipose tissue, liver, muscle and gastrointestinal tract. To examine the role of irisin on feeding and metabolism in fish, the effects of peripheral (intraperitoneal) injections of irisin on feeding behavior, glucose levels and the mRNA expressions of appetite regulators (cocaine and amphetamine regulated transcript CART, agouti related protein AgRP, orexin), UCPs and lipoprotein lipase LPL and brain factors (brain-derived neurotrophic factor , BDNF and tyrosine hydroxylase TH) were assessed in brain, white muscle and intestine. Irisin injections (100ng/g) induced a decrease in food intake and increases in brain orexin, CART1 and CART2, UCP2, BDNF, muscle UCP2 and intestine LPL mRNA expressions but did not affect blood glucose levels, brain AgRP, TH, UCP1, UCP3 and LPL or muscle UCP1, UCP3 and LPL expressions. A partial goldfish FNDC5 cDNA was isolated and the expressions of FDNC5, UCPs, LPL and BDNF were also compared between fed and fasted fish. Fasting induced decreases FNDC5 mRNA expression in the brain and intestine, but not in muscle. Fasting also induced increases in brain BDNF and LPL expressions and increases in UCP1, UCP2, UCP3 and LPL expressions in muscle. Our result suggest that irisin is an anorexigenic factor in fish and its actions might be in part mediated by appetite-regulating factors such as CART and orexins as well as UCP2 and brain factors such as BDNF.

  18. Assessing Interactions Between Ghsr and Mc3r Reveals a Role for AgRP in the Expression of Food Anticipatory Activity in Male Mice

    PubMed Central

    Girardet, Clemence; Mavrikaki, Maria; Southern, Mark R.; Smith, Roy G.

    2014-01-01

    The stomach hormone ghrelin and hypothalamic melanocortin neurons belong to a gut-brain circuit controlling appetite and metabolic homeostasis. Mice lacking melanocortin-3 receptor (Mc3rKO) or growth hormone secretagogue receptor (GhsrKO) genes exhibit attenuated food anticipatory activity (FAA), a rise in locomotor activity anticipating mealtime, suggesting common circuitry regulating anticipatory responses to nutrient loading. To investigate the interaction between Ghsrs and Mc3rs, we compared food anticipatory responses in GhsrKO, Mc3rKO, and double Ghsr;Mc3r knockout (DKO) mice subjected to a hypocaloric restricted feeding (RF) protocol in constant dark or 12-hour light, 12-hour dark settings. DKO are viable, exhibiting no overt behavioral or metabolic phenotypes in ad libitum or fasting conditions. FAA was initially attenuated in all mutant strains in constant darkness. However, GhsrKO eventually exhibited a robust food anticipatory response, suggesting compensation. Mc3rKO and DKO did not compensate, indicating a continued requirement for Mc3rs in maintaining the expression of FAA in situations of RF. Abnormal regulation of hypothalamic agouti-related peptide/neuropeptide Y (AgRP/Npy) neurons previously observed during fasting may contribute to attenuated FAA in Mc3rKO. AgRP and Npy expression measured 1 hour before food presentation correlated positively with FAA. Absence of Mc3rs (but not Ghsrs) was associated with lower AgRP/Npy expression, suggesting attenuated responses to signals of negative energy balance. These observations support the importance of Mc3rs as modulators of anticipatory responses to feeding, with mice able to compensate for loss of Ghsrs. The behavioral deficits of Mc3rKO displayed during RF may be partially explained by reduced hunger sensations owing to abnormal regulation of orexigenic AgRP/Npy neurons. PMID:25211592

  19. Arcuate AgRP neurons mediate orexigenic and glucoregulatory actions of ghrelin.

    PubMed

    Wang, Qian; Liu, Chen; Uchida, Aki; Chuang, Jen-Chieh; Walker, Angela; Liu, Tiemin; Osborne-Lawrence, Sherri; Mason, Brittany L; Mosher, Christina; Berglund, Eric D; Elmquist, Joel K; Zigman, Jeffrey M

    2014-02-01

    The hormone ghrelin stimulates eating and helps maintain blood glucose upon caloric restriction. While previous studies have demonstrated that hypothalamic arcuate AgRP neurons are targets of ghrelin, the overall relevance of ghrelin signaling within intact AgRP neurons is unclear. Here, we tested the functional significance of ghrelin action on AgRP neurons using a new, tamoxifen-inducible AgRP-CreER(T2) transgenic mouse model that allows spatiotemporally-controlled re-expression of physiological levels of ghrelin receptors (GHSRs) specifically in AgRP neurons of adult GHSR-null mice that otherwise lack GHSR expression. AgRP neuron-selective GHSR re-expression partially restored the orexigenic response to administered ghrelin and fully restored the lowered blood glucose levels observed upon caloric restriction. The normalizing glucoregulatory effect of AgRP neuron-selective GHSR expression was linked to glucagon rises and hepatic gluconeogenesis induction. Thus, our data indicate that GHSR-containing AgRP neurons are not solely responsible for ghrelin's orexigenic effects but are sufficient to mediate ghrelin's effects on glycemia.

  20. Fasting alters protein expression of AMP-activated protein kinase in the hypothalamus of broiler chicks (Gallus gallus domesticus).

    PubMed

    Song, Zhigang; Liu, Lei; Yue, Yunshuang; Jiao, Hongchao; Lin, Hai; Sheikhahmadi, Ardashir; Everaert, Nadia; Decuypere, Eddy; Buyse, Johan

    2012-09-15

    An experiment was conducted to investigate the effects of fasting and re-feeding on hypothalamic 5'-AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK) levels and (an)orexigenic neuropeptides. Male Arbor Acres chicks (7-day-old, n=160) were allocated to four equal treatment groups: control chicks (fed ad libitum for 48 h, C48), chicks that were fasted for 48 h (F48), chicks that were first fasted for 48 h and then re-fed for 24h (F48C24), and chicks that were fed ad libitum for 72h (C72). Fasting for 48 h significantly (P<0.05) increased the ratio of phosphorylated AMPKα to total AMPKα and phosphorylated LKB1 to total LKB1, whereas re-feeding for 24h reduced these ratios to that of the ad libitum fed C72 chicks. The gene expressions of agouti-related peptide (AgRP), neuropeptide Y (NPY), melanocortin receptor 4, melanin-concentrating hormone, prepro-orexins and carnitine palmitoyltransferase-1 were significantly (P<0.05) increased in the fasted chicks relative to the ad libitum fed C48 group. The gene expression of pro-opiomelanocortin (POMC), as well as cocaine- and amphetamine-regulated transcript (CART) was not affected by the nutritional status. Fasting significantly (P<0.05) decreased the mRNA levels of fatty acid synthase (FAS) and sterol regulatory element binding protein-1 (SREBP-1). The results suggest that the LKB1/AMPK signal pathway is involved in the energy homeostasis of fasted chicks, and its possible role in feed intake regulation might be mediated by the AgRP/NPY rather than the POMC/CART pathway.

  1. Agrp neurons mediate Sirt1's action on the melanocortin system and energy balance: roles for Sirt1 in neuronal firing and synaptic plasticity.

    PubMed

    Dietrich, Marcelo O; Antunes, Catiele; Geliang, Gan; Liu, Zhong-Wu; Borok, Erzsebet; Nie, Yongzhan; Xu, Allison W; Souza, Diogo O; Gao, Qian; Diano, Sabrina; Gao, Xiao-Bing; Horvath, Tamas L

    2010-09-01

    Sirt1 has been associated with various effects of calorie restriction, including an increase in lifespan. Here we show in mice that a central regulatory component in energy metabolism, the hypothalamic melanocortin system, is affected by Sirt1, which promotes the activity and connectivity of this system resulting in negative energy balance. In adult mice, the pharmacological inhibition of brain Sirt1 activity decreased Agrp neuronal activity and the inhibitory tone on the anorexigenic POMC neurons, as measured by the number of synaptic inputs to these neurons. When a Sirt1 inhibitor (EX-527) was injected either peripherally (i.p., 10 mg/kg) or directly into the brain (i.c.v., 1.5 nmol/mouse), it decreased both food intake during the dark cycle and ghrelin-induced food intake. This effect on feeding is mediated by upstream melanocortin receptors, because the MC4R antagonist, SHU9119, reversed Sirt1's effect on food intake. This action of Sirt1 required an appropriate shift in the mitochondrial redox state: in the absence of such an adaptation enabled by the mitochondrial protein, UCP2, Sirt1-induced cellular and behavioral responses were impaired. In accordance with the pharmacological results, the selective knock-out of Sirt1 in hypothalamic Agrp neurons through the use of Cre-Lox technology decreased electric responses of Agrp neurons to ghrelin and decreased food intake, leading to decreased lean mass, fat mass, and body weight. The present data indicate that Sirt1 has a central mode of action by acting on the NPY/Agrp neurons to affect body metabolism.

  2. AgRP Neural Circuits Mediate Adaptive Behaviors in the Starved State

    PubMed Central

    Padilla, Stephanie L.; Qiu, Jian; Soden, Marta E.; Sanz, Elisenda; Nestor, Casey C; Barker, Forrest D.; Quintana, Albert; Zweifel, Larry S.; Rønnekleiv, Oline K.; Kelly, Martin J.; Palmiter, Richard D.

    2016-01-01

    In the face of starvation animals will engage in high-risk behaviors that would normally be considered maladaptive. Starving rodents for example will forage in areas that are more susceptible to predators and will also modulate aggressive behavior within a territory of limited or depleted nutrients. The neural basis of these adaptive behaviors likely involves circuits that link innate feeding, aggression, and fear. Hypothalamic AgRP neurons are critically important for driving feeding and project axons to brain regions implicated in aggression and fear. Using circuit-mapping techniques, we define a disynaptic network originating from a subset of AgRP neurons that project to the medial nucleus of the amygdala and then to the principle bed nucleus of the stria terminalis, which plays a role in suppressing territorial aggression and reducing contextual fear. We propose that AgRP neurons serve as a master switch capable of coordinating behavioral decisions relative to internal state and environmental cues. PMID:27019015

  3. Fasting activation of AgRP neurons requires NMDA receptors and involves spinogenesis and increased excitatory tone.

    PubMed

    Liu, Tiemin; Kong, Dong; Shah, Bhavik P; Ye, Chianping; Koda, Shuichi; Saunders, Arpiar; Ding, Jun B; Yang, Zongfang; Sabatini, Bernardo L; Lowell, Bradford B

    2012-02-09

    AgRP neuron activity drives feeding and weight gain whereas that of nearby POMC neurons does the opposite. However, the role of excitatory glutamatergic input in controlling these neurons is unknown. To address this question, we generated mice lacking NMDA receptors (NMDARs) on either AgRP or POMC neurons. Deletion of NMDARs from AgRP neurons markedly reduced weight, body fat and food intake whereas deletion from POMC neurons had no effect. Activation of AgRP neurons by fasting, as assessed by c-Fos, Agrp and Npy mRNA expression, AMPA receptor-mediated EPSCs, depolarization and firing rates, required NMDARs. Furthermore, AgRP but not POMC neurons have dendritic spines and increased glutamatergic input onto AgRP neurons caused by fasting was paralleled by an increase in spines, suggesting fasting induced synaptogenesis and spinogenesis. Thus glutamatergic synaptic transmission and its modulation by NMDARs play key roles in controlling AgRP neurons and determining the cellular and behavioral response to fasting.

  4. Glucose sensing mechanisms in hypothalamic cell models: glucose inhibition of AgRP synthesis and secretion.

    PubMed

    Chalmers, Jennifer A; Jang, Janet J; Belsham, Denise D

    2014-01-25

    Glucose-sensing neurons play a role in energy homeostasis, yet how orexigenic neurons sense glucose remains unclear. As models of glucose-inhibited (GI) neurons, mHypoE-29/1 and mHypoA-NPY/GFP cells express the essential orexigenic neuropeptide AgRP and glucose sensing machinery. Exposure to increasing concentrations of glucose or the glucose analog 2-deoxyglucose (2-DG) results in a decrease in AgRP mRNA levels. Taste receptor, Tas1R2 mRNA expression was reduced by glucose, whereas 2-DG reduced Tas1R3 mRNA levels. Increasing glucose concentrations elicited a rise in Akt and neuronal nitric oxide synthase (nNOS) phosphorylation, CaMKKβ levels, and a reduction of AMP-kinase alpha phosphorylation. Inhibitors of NOS and the cystic fibrosis transmembrane conductance regulator (CFTR) prevented a decrease in AgRP secretion with glucose, suggesting a pivotal role for nNOS and the CFTR in glucose-sensing. These models possess the hallmark characteristics of GI neurons, and can be used to disentangle the mechanisms by which orexigenic neurons sense glucose.

  5. Characterization, tissue distribution and regulation by fasting of the agouti family of peptides in the sea bass (Dicentrarchus labrax).

    PubMed

    Agulleiro, Maria Josep; Cortés, Raúl; Leal, Esther; Ríos, Diana; Sánchez, Elisa; Cerdá-Reverter, José Miguel

    2014-09-01

    The melanocortin system is one of the most complex hormonal systems in vertebrates. Atypically, the signaling of melanocortin receptors is regulated by the binding of endogenous antagonists, named agouti-signaling protein (ASIP) and agouti-related protein (AGRP). Teleost specific genome duplication (TSGD) rendered new gene copies in teleost fish and up to four different genes of the agouti family of peptides have been characterized. In this paper, molecular cloning was used to characterize mRNA of the agouti family of peptides in sea bass. Four different genes were identified: AGRP1, ASIP1, AGRP2 and ASIP2. The AGRP1 gene is mainly expressed in the brain whereas ASIP1 is mainly expressed in the ventral skin. Both ASIP2 and AGRP2 are expressed in the brain and the pineal gland but also in some peripheral tissues. Immunocytochemical studies demonstrated that AGRP1 is exclusively expressed within the lateral tuberal nucleus, the homologue of the mammalian arcuate nucleus in fish. Long-term fasting (8-29 days) increased the hypothalamic expression of AGRP1 but depressed AGRP2 expression (15-29 days). In contrast, the hypothalamic expression of ASIP2 was upregulated during short-term fasting suggesting that this peptide could be involved in the short term regulation of food intake in the sea bass.

  6. Central role of the melanocortin-4 receptors in appetite regulation after endotoxin.

    PubMed

    Sartin, J L; Marks, D L; McMahon, C D; Daniel, J A; Levasseur, P; Wagner, C G; Whitlock, B K; Steele, B P

    2008-10-01

    Melanocortin-4 receptors (MC4R) are key factors in the depression of appetite during disease. This study was designed to determine the role of agouti-related protein (AgRP) in the effect of endotoxin (lipopolysaccharide, LPS) on appetite. Sheep received an intracerebroventricular injection of either saline or AgRP (0.5 nmol/kg of BW) 1 h before intravenous injection of either saline or LPS (0.6 microg/kg of BW) at time 0 and again at 4 h. Agouti-related protein prevented the reduction in feed intake due to LPS (P < 0.05). In a second experiment, AgRP gene expression was unaffected at 3 h and increased (P < 0.01) at 6 h after LPS. Immunohistochemical evidence indicated that there was an increase in the percentage of AgRP neurons with c-Fos immunoreactive nuclei 6 h after sheep were injected with LPS (P < 0.04) and a corresponding decrease in a-melanocyte-stimulating hormone neurons coexpressing c-Fos (P < 0.001). In situ hybridization provided evidence for an increase in AgRP gene expression and a decrease in proopiomelanocortin gene expression 6 h after LPS (P < 0.05). In a final experiment, physiological elevation of orexigenic agents by short-term fasting kept feed intake at the same level as controls, in spite of the presence of LPS, similar to the effects of AgRP in Exp. 1. The AgRP inhibition of the MC4R prevents appetite inhibition in response to LPS and well after LPS inhibition of feed intake, both AgRP and a-melanocyte-stimulating hormone may change in a pattern that favors appetite increases. These studies support the notion of the MC4R as a critical component of the mechanism for appetite suppression due to endotoxin.

  7. AgRP(83-132) and SHU9119 differently affect activity-based anorexia.

    PubMed

    Hillebrand, Jacquelien J G; Kas, Martien J H; Scheurink, Anton J W; van Dijk, Gertjan; Adan, Roger A H

    2006-08-01

    Activity-based anorexia (ABA) mimics starvation and hyperactivity of anorexia nervosa patients in rats. Activation of the melanocortin (MC) system leads to hypophagia and increased energy expenditure in ad libitum fed rats. Therefore, activation of the MC system might underlie the development and propagation of ABA. Pro-opiomelanocortin (POMC) gene expression is normally decreased during negative energy balance. Strikingly, we found a transient up-regulation of POMC mRNA levels in the arcuate nucleus during the development of ABA, indicating a hyperactive MC system. However, wheel running and food intake were not influenced by treating ABA rats with the competitive antagonist SHU9119. This suggests that agonism of MC receptors by endogenous alpha-melanocyte-stimulating hormone (alpha-MSH) levels does not underlie ABA. Instead, treatment with the inverse agonist AgRP(83-132) did ameliorate signs of ABA. This implies that modulation of constitutive MC receptor activity rather than antagonizing putative alpha-MSH release contributes to the development and propagation of ABA.

  8. Central action of FGF19 reduces hypothalamic AGRP/NPY neuron activity and improves glucose metabolism.

    PubMed

    Marcelin, Geneviève; Jo, Young-Hwan; Li, Xiaosong; Schwartz, Gary J; Zhang, Ying; Dun, Nae J; Lyu, Rong-Ming; Blouet, Clémence; Chang, Jaw K; Chua, Streamson

    2014-02-01

    Tight control of glucose excursions has been a long-standing goal of treatment for patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus in order to ameliorate the morbidity and mortality associated with hyperglycemia. Fibroblast growth factor (FGF) 19 is a hormone-like enterokine released postprandially that emerged as a potential therapeutic agent for metabolic disorders, including diabetes and obesity. Remarkably, FGF19 treatment has hypoglycemic actions that remain potent in models of genetic and acquired insulin resistance. Here, we provided evidence that the central nervous system responds to FGF19 administered in the periphery. Then, in two mouse models of insulin resistance, leptin-deficiency and high-fat diet feeding, third intra-cerebro-ventricular infusions of FGF19 improved glycemic status, reduced insulin resistance and potentiated insulin signaling in the periphery. In addition, our study highlights a new mechanism of central FGF19 action, involving the suppression of AGRP/NPY neuronal activity. Overall, our work unveils novel regulatory pathways induced by FGF19 that will be useful in the design of novel strategies to control diabetes in obesity.

  9. GPR17 gene disruption does not alter food intake or glucose homeostasis in mice

    PubMed Central

    Mastaitis, Jason; Min, Soo; Elvert, Ralf; Kannt, Aimo; Xin, Yurong; Ochoa, Francisca; Gale, Nicholas W.; Valenzuela, David M.; Murphy, Andrew J.; Yancopoulos, George D.; Gromada, Jesper

    2015-01-01

    G protein-coupled receptor 17 (GPR17) was recently reported to be a Foxo1 target in agouti-related peptide (AGRP) neurons. Intracerebroventricular injection of GPR17 agonists induced food intake, whereas administration of an antagonist to the receptor reduced feeding. These data lead to the conclusion that pharmacological modulation of GPR17 has therapeutic potential to treat obesity. Here we report that mice deficient in Gpr17 (Gpr17−/−) have similar food intake and body weight compared with their wild-type littermates. Gpr17−/− mice have normal hypothalamic Agrp mRNA expression, AGRP plasma levels, and metabolic rate. GPR17 deficiency in mice did not affect glucose homeostasis or prevent fat-induced insulin resistance. These data do not support a role for GPR17 in the control of food intake, body weight, or glycemic control. PMID:25624481

  10. Somato-Dendritic Localization and Signaling by Leptin Receptors in Hypothalamic POMC and AgRP Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Ha, Sangdeuk; Baver, Scott; Huo, Lihong; Gata, Adriana; Hairston, Joyce; Huntoon, Nicholas; Li, Wenjing; Zhang, Thompson; Benecchi, Elizabeth J.; Ericsson, Maria; Hentges, Shane T.; Bjørbæk, Christian

    2013-01-01

    Leptin acts via neuronal leptin receptors to control energy balance. Hypothalamic pro-opiomelanocortin (POMC) and agouti-related peptide (AgRP)/Neuropeptide Y (NPY)/GABA neurons produce anorexigenic and orexigenic neuropeptides and neurotransmitters, and express the long signaling form of the leptin receptor (LepRb). Despite progress in the understanding of LepRb signaling and function, the sub-cellular localization of LepRb in target neurons has not been determined, primarily due to lack of sensitive anti-LepRb antibodies. Here we applied light microscopy (LM), confocal-laser scanning microscopy (CLSM), and electron microscopy (EM) to investigate LepRb localization and signaling in mice expressing a HA-tagged LepRb selectively in POMC or AgRP/NPY/GABA neurons. We report that LepRb receptors exhibit a somato-dendritic expression pattern. We further show that LepRb activates STAT3 phosphorylation in neuronal fibers within several hypothalamic and hindbrain nuclei of wild-type mice and rats, and specifically in dendrites of arcuate POMC and AgRP/NPY/GABA neurons of Leprb+/+ mice and in Leprbdb/db mice expressing HA-LepRb in a neuron specific manner. We did not find evidence of LepRb localization or STAT3-signaling in axon-fibers or nerve-terminals of POMC and AgRP/NPY/GABA neurons. Three-dimensional serial EM-reconstruction of dendritic segments from POMC and AgRP/NPY/GABA neurons indicates a high density of shaft synapses. In addition, we found that the leptin activates STAT3 signaling in proximity to synapses on POMC and AgRP/NPY/GABA dendritic shafts. Taken together, these data suggest that the signaling-form of the leptin receptor exhibits a somato-dendritic expression pattern in POMC and AgRP/NPY/GABA neurons. Dendritic LepRb signaling may therefore play an important role in leptin’s central effects on energy balance, possibly through modulation of synaptic activity via post-synaptic mechanisms. PMID:24204898

  11. AgRP and POMC Neurons Are Hypophysiotropic and Coordinately Regulate Multiple Endocrine Axes in a Teleost

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Chao; Forlano, Paul M.; Cone, Roger D.

    2012-01-01

    SUMMARY Plasticity in growth and reproductive behavior is found in many vertebrate species, but is common in male teleost fish. Typically, “bourgeois” males are considerably larger and defend breeding territories while “parasitic” variants are small and use opportunistic breeding strategies. The P locus mediates this phenotypic variation in Xipophorus and encodes variant alleles of the melanocortin-4 receptor (MC4R). However, deletion of the MC4R has modest effects on somatic growth and reproduction in mammals, suggesting a fundamental difference in the neuroendocrine function of central melanocortin signaling in teleosts. Here we show in a teleost that the hypothalamic proopiomelanocortin and AgRP neurons are hypophysiotropic, projecting to the pituitary to coordinately regulate multiple pituitary hormones. Indeed, AgRP-mediated suppression of MC4R appears essential for early larval growth. This identifies the mechanism by which the central melanocortin system coordinately regulates growth and reproduction in teleosts, and suggests it is an important anatomical substrate for evolutionary adaptation. PMID:22245570

  12. NR2B subunit of the NMDA glutamate receptor regulates appetite in the parabrachial nucleus.

    PubMed

    Wu, Qi; Zheng, Ruimao; Srisai, Dollada; McKnight, G Stanley; Palmiter, Richard D

    2013-09-03

    Diphtheria toxin-mediated, acute ablation of hypothalamic neurons expressing agouti-related protein (AgRP) in adult mice leads to anorexia and starvation within 7 d that is caused by hyperactivity of neurons within the parabrachial nucleus (PBN). Because NMDA glutamate receptors are involved in various synaptic plasticity-based behavioral modifications, we hypothesized that modulation of the NR2A and NR2B subunits of the NMDA receptor in PBN neurons could contribute to the anorexia phenotype. We observed by Western blot analyses that ablation of AgRP neurons results in enhanced expression of NR2B along with a modest suppression of NR2A. Interestingly, systemic administration of LiCl in a critical time window before AgRP neuron ablation abolished the anorectic response. LiCl treatment suppressed NR2B levels in the PBN and ameliorated the local Fos induction that is associated with anorexia. This protective role of LiCl on feeding was blunted in vagotomized mice. Chronic infusion of RO25-6981, a selective NR2B inhibitor, into the PBN recapitulated the role of LiCl in maintaining feeding after AgRP neuron ablation. We suggest that the accumulation of NR2B subunits in the PBN contributes to aphagia in response to AgRP neuron ablation and may be involved in other forms of anorexia.

  13. Modulation of AgRP-neuronal function by SOCS3 as an initiating event in diet-induced hypothalamic leptin resistance.

    PubMed

    Olofsson, Louise E; Unger, Elizabeth K; Cheung, Clement C; Xu, Allison W

    2013-02-19

    Chronic consumption of a fat-rich diet leads to attenuation of leptin signaling in hypothalamic neurons, a hallmark feature of cellular leptin resistance. To date, little is known about the temporal and spatial dysregulation of neuronal function under conditions of nutrient excess. We show that agouti-related protein (AgRP)-expressing neurons precede proopiomelanocortin neurons in developing diet-induced cellular leptin resistance. High-fat diet-induced up-regulation of suppressor of cytokine signaling-3 (SOCS3) occurs in AgRP neurons before proopiomelanocortin and other hypothalamic neurons. SOCS3 expression in AgRP neurons increases after 2 d of high-fat feeding, but reduces after switching to a low-fat diet for 1 d. Consistently, transgenic overexpression of SOCS3 in AgRP neurons produces metabolic phenotypes resembling those observed after short-term high-fat feeding. We further show that AgRP neurons are the predominant cell type situated outside the blood-brain barrier in the mediobasal hypothalamus. AgRP neurons are more responsive to low levels of circulating leptin, but they are also more prone to development of leptin resistance in response to a small increase in blood leptin concentrations. Collectively, these results suggest that AgRP neurons are able to sense slight changes in plasma metabolic signals, allowing them to serve as first-line responders to fluctuation of energy intake. Furthermore, modulation of SOCS3 expression in AgRP neurons may play a dynamic and physiological role in metabolic fine tuning in response to short-term changes of nutritional status.

  14. Control of energy balance by hypothalamic gene circuitry involving two nuclear receptors, neuron-derived orphan receptor 1 and glucocorticoid receptor.

    PubMed

    Kim, Sun-Gyun; Lee, Bora; Kim, Dae-Hwan; Kim, Juhee; Lee, Seunghee; Lee, Soo-Kyung; Lee, Jae W

    2013-10-01

    Nuclear receptors (NRs) regulate diverse physiological processes, including the central nervous system control of energy balance. However, the molecular mechanisms for the central actions of NRs in energy balance remain relatively poorly defined. Here we report a hypothalamic gene network involving two NRs, neuron-derived orphan receptor 1 (NOR1) and glucocorticoid receptor (GR), which directs the regulated expression of orexigenic neuropeptides agouti-related peptide (AgRP) and neuropeptide Y (NPY) in response to peripheral signals. Our results suggest that the anorexigenic signal leptin induces NOR1 expression likely via the transcription factor cyclic AMP response element-binding protein (CREB), while the orexigenic signal glucocorticoid mobilizes GR to inhibit NOR1 expression by antagonizing the action of CREB. Also, NOR1 suppresses glucocorticoid-dependent expression of AgRP and NPY. Consistently, relative to wild-type mice, NOR1-null mice showed significantly higher levels of AgRP and NPY and were less responsive to leptin in decreasing the expression of AgRP and NPY. These results identify mutual antagonism between NOR1 and GR to be a key rheostat for peripheral metabolic signals to centrally control energy balance.

  15. Enhanced Ghrelin Levels and Hypothalamic Orexigenic AgRP and NPY Neuropeptide Expression in Models of Jejuno-Colonic Short Bowel Syndrome

    PubMed Central

    Gillard, Laura; Billiauws, Lore; Stan-Iuga, Bogdan; Ribeiro-Parenti, Lara; Jarry, Anne-Charlotte; Cavin, Jean-Baptiste; Cluzeaud, Françoise; Mayeur, Camille; Thomas, Muriel; Freund, Jean-Noël; Lacorte, Jean-Marc; Le Gall, Maude; Bado, André; Joly, Francisca; Le Beyec, Johanne

    2016-01-01

    Short bowel syndrome (SBS) patients developing hyperphagia have a better outcome. Gastrointestinal endocrine adaptations help to improve intestinal functions and food behaviour. We investigated neuroendocrine adaptations in SBS patients and rat models with jejuno-ileal (IR-JI) or jejuno-colonic (IR-JC) anastomosis with and without parenteral nutrition. Circulating levels of ghrelin, PYY, GLP-1, and GLP-2 were determined in SBS rat models and patients. Levels of mRNA for proglucagon, PYY and for hypothalamic neuropeptides were quantified by qRT-PCR in SBS rat models. Histology and immunostaining for Ki67, GLP-1 and PYY were performed in SBS rats. IR-JC rats, but not IR-JI, exhibited significantly higher crypt depths and number of Ki67-positive cells than sham. Fasting and/or postprandial plasma ghrelin and PYY concentrations were higher, or tend to be higher, in IR-JC rats and SBS-JC patients than in controls. Proglucagon and Pyy mRNA levels were significantly enhanced in IR-JC rats. Levels of mRNA coding hypothalamic orexigenic NPY and AgRP peptides were significantly higher in IR-JC than in sham rats. We demonstrate an increase of plasma ghrelin concentrations, major changes in hypothalamic neuropeptides levels and greater induction of PYY in SBS-JC rats and patients suggesting that jejuno-colonic continuity creates a peculiar environment promoting further gut-brain adaptations. PMID:27323884

  16. Selected hormonal and neurotransmitter mechanisms regulating feed intake in sheep.

    PubMed

    Sartin, J L; Daniel, J A; Whitlock, B K; Wilborn, R R

    2010-11-01

    Appetite control is a major issue in normal growth and in suboptimal growth performance settings. A number of hormones, in particular leptin, activate or inhibit orexigenic or anorexigenic neurotransmitters within the arcuate nucleus of the hypothalamus, where feed intake regulation is integrated. Examples of appetite regulatory neurotransmitters are the stimulatory neurotransmitters neuropeptide Y (NPY), agouti-related protein (AgRP), orexin and melanin-concentrating hormone and the inhibitory neurotransmitter, melanocyte-stimulating hormone (MSH). Examination of messenger RNA (using in situ hybridization and real-time PCR) and proteins (using immunohistochemistry) for these neurotransmitters in ruminants has indicated that physiological regulation occurs in response to fasting for several of these critical genes and proteins, especially AgRP and NPY. Moreover, intracerebroventricular injection of each of the four stimulatory neurotransmitters can increase feed intake in sheep and may also regulate either growth hormone, luteinizing hormone, cortisol or other hormones. In contrast, both leptin and MSH are inhibitory to feed intake in ruminants. Interestingly, the natural melanocortin-4 receptor (MC4R) antagonist, AgRP, as well as NPY can prevent the inhibition of feed intake after injection of endotoxin (to model disease suppression of appetite). Thus, knowledge of the mechanisms regulating feed intake in the hypothalamus may lead to mechanisms to increase feed intake in normal growing animals and prevent the wasting effects of severe disease in animals.

  17. Metabolic Benefit of Chronic Caloric Restriction and Activation of Hypothalamic AGRP/NPY Neurons in Male Mice Is Independent of Ghrelin.

    PubMed

    Rogers, Nicole H; Walsh, Heidi; Alvarez-Garcia, Oscar; Park, Seongjoon; Gaylinn, Bruce; Thorner, Michael O; Smith, Roy G

    2016-04-01

    Aging is associated with attenuated ghrelin signaling. During aging, chronic caloric restriction (CR) produces health benefits accompanied by enhanced ghrelin production. Ghrelin receptor (GH secretagogue receptor 1a) agonists administered to aging rodents and humans restore the young adult phenotype; therefore, we tested the hypothesis that the metabolic benefits of CR are mediated by endogenous ghrelin. Three month-old male mice lacking ghrelin (Ghrelin-/-) or ghrelin receptor (Ghsr-/-), and their wild-type (WT) littermates were randomly assigned to 2 groups: ad libitum (AL) fed and CR, where 40% food restriction was introduced gradually to allow Ghrelin-/- and Ghsr-/- mice to metabolically adapt and avoid severe hypoglycemia. Twelve months later, plasma ghrelin, metabolic parameters, ambulatory activity, hypothalamic and liver gene expression, as well as body composition were measured. CR increased plasma ghrelin and des-acyl ghrelin concentrations in WT and Ghsr-/- mice. CR of WT, Ghsr-/-, and Ghrelin-/- mice markedly improved metabolic flexibility, enhanced ambulatory activity, and reduced adiposity. Inactivation of Ghrelin or Ghsr had no effect on AL food intake or food anticipatory behavior. In contrast to the widely held belief that endogenous ghrelin regulates food intake, CR increased expression of hypothalamic Agrp and Npy, with reduced expression of Pomc across genotypes. In the AL context, ablation of ghrelin signaling markedly inhibited liver steatosis, which correlated with reduced Pparγ expression and enhanced Irs2 expression. Although CR and administration of GH secretagogue receptor 1a agonists both benefit the aging phenotype, we conclude the benefits of chronic CR are a consequence of enhanced metabolic flexibility independent of endogenous ghrelin or des-acyl ghrelin signaling.

  18. Feeding behavior and gene expression of appetite-related neuropeptides in mice lacking for neuropeptide Y Y5 receptor subclass.

    PubMed

    Higuchi, Hiroshi; Niki, Takeshi; Shiiya, Tomohiro

    2008-11-07

    Neuropeptide Y (NPY) is a potent neurotransmitter for feeding. Besides NPY, orexigenic neuropeptides such as agouti-related protein (AgRP), and anorexigenic neuropeptides such as alpha-melatonin stimulating hormone (MSH) and cocaine-amphetamine-regulated transcript (CART) are also involved in central feeding regulation. During fasting, NPY and AgRP gene expressions are up-regulated and POMC and CART gene expressions are down-regulated in hypothalamus. Based on the network of peptidergic neurons, the former are involved in positive feeding regulation, and the latter are involved in negative feeding, which exert these feeding-regulated peptides especially in paraventricular nucleus (PVN). To clarify the compensatory mechanism of knock-out of NPY system on feeding, change in gene expressions of appetite-related neuropeptides and the feeding behavior was studied in NPY Y5-KO mice. Food intake was increased in Y5-KO mice. Fasting increased the amounts of food and water intake in the KO mice more profoundly. These data indicated the compensatory phenomenon of feeding behavior in Y5-KO mice. RT-PCR and ISH suggested that the compensation of feeding is due to change in gene expressions of AgRP, CART and POMC in hypothalamus. Thus, these findings indicated that the compensatory mechanism involves change in POMC/CART gene expression in arcuate nucleus (ARC). The POMC/CART gene expression is important for central compensatory regulation in feeding behavior.

  19. Postprandial effects on appetite-related neuropeptide expression in the brain of Atlantic salmon, Salmo salar.

    PubMed

    Valen, R; Jordal, A-E O; Murashita, K; Rønnestad, I

    2011-05-01

    Following feeding of a single meal to Atlantic salmon, the temporal changes in the brain mRNA expression of neuropeptide y (npy), cocaine-amphetamine regulated transcript (cart), peptide yy (pyy), two isoforms of agouti-related protein (agrp), two isoforms of cholecystokinin (cck), and four isoforms of proopiomelanocortin (pomc) were assessed by q-PCR. In the course of 24h post-feeding (hpf), several of the brain neuropeptides displayed changes in mRNA expression compared to an unfed control group, indicating that food intake and processing affect the regulation of expression of these genes in Atlantic salmon. Expression of cart, cck-l, pomc-a1 and pomc-b all increased within 3h of feeding, while most of the feed was still in the stomach, suggesting that these neuropeptides play central anorexigenic roles similar to those described in higher vertebrates, including determining meal intervals. On the other hand, the npy and agrp isoforms which have been described as playing orexigenic roles in mammals, showed an opposite response in salmon and both were elevated in the first 3h after feeding. The different isoforms of cck, agrp and pomc had different mRNA expression patterns, which indicate specific roles related to feeding regulation. The minimal effect of feeding and digestion on pyy expression in the brain indicates that PYY plays a minor role in the central control of short-term food intake in Atlantic salmon.

  20. Cell type-specific transcriptomics of hypothalamic energy-sensing neuron responses to weight-loss.

    PubMed

    Henry, Fredrick E; Sugino, Ken; Tozer, Adam; Branco, Tiago; Sternson, Scott M

    2015-09-02

    Molecular and cellular processes in neurons are critical for sensing and responding to energy deficit states, such as during weight-loss. Agouti related protein (AGRP)-expressing neurons are a key hypothalamic population that is activated during energy deficit and increases appetite and weight-gain. Cell type-specific transcriptomics can be used to identify pathways that counteract weight-loss, and here we report high-quality gene expression profiles of AGRP neurons from well-fed and food-deprived young adult mice. For comparison, we also analyzed Proopiomelanocortin (POMC)-expressing neurons, an intermingled population that suppresses appetite and body weight. We find that AGRP neurons are considerably more sensitive to energy deficit than POMC neurons. Furthermore, we identify cell type-specific pathways involving endoplasmic reticulum-stress, circadian signaling, ion channels, neuropeptides, and receptors. Combined with methods to validate and manipulate these pathways, this resource greatly expands molecular insight into neuronal regulation of body weight, and may be useful for devising therapeutic strategies for obesity and eating disorders.

  1. Cell type-specific transcriptomics of hypothalamic energy-sensing neuron responses to weight-loss

    PubMed Central

    Henry, Fredrick E; Sugino, Ken; Tozer, Adam; Branco, Tiago; Sternson, Scott M

    2015-01-01

    Molecular and cellular processes in neurons are critical for sensing and responding to energy deficit states, such as during weight-loss. Agouti related protein (AGRP)-expressing neurons are a key hypothalamic population that is activated during energy deficit and increases appetite and weight-gain. Cell type-specific transcriptomics can be used to identify pathways that counteract weight-loss, and here we report high-quality gene expression profiles of AGRP neurons from well-fed and food-deprived young adult mice. For comparison, we also analyzed Proopiomelanocortin (POMC)-expressing neurons, an intermingled population that suppresses appetite and body weight. We find that AGRP neurons are considerably more sensitive to energy deficit than POMC neurons. Furthermore, we identify cell type-specific pathways involving endoplasmic reticulum-stress, circadian signaling, ion channels, neuropeptides, and receptors. Combined with methods to validate and manipulate these pathways, this resource greatly expands molecular insight into neuronal regulation of body weight, and may be useful for devising therapeutic strategies for obesity and eating disorders. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.09800.001 PMID:26329458

  2. Changes in mRNA expression of arcuate nucleus appetite-regulating peptides during lactation in rats.

    PubMed

    Suzuki, Yoshihiro; Nakahara, Keiko; Maruyama, Keisuke; Okame, Rieko; Ensho, Takuya; Inoue, Yoshiyuki; Murakami, Noboru

    2014-04-01

    The contribution of hypothalamic appetite-regulating peptides to further hyperphagia accompanying the course of lactation in rats was investigated by using PCR array and real-time PCR. Furthermore, changes in the mRNA expression for appetite-regulating peptides in the hypothalamic arcuate nucleus (ARC) were analyzed at all stages of pregnancy and lactation, and also after weaning. Food intake was significantly higher during pregnancy, lactation, and after weaning than during non-lactation periods. During lactation, ARC expression of mRNAs for agouti-related protein (AgRP) and peptide YY was increased, whereas that of mRNAs for proopiomelanocortin (POMC) and cholecystokinin (CCK) was decreased, in comparison with non-lactation periods. The increase in AgRP mRNA expression during lactation was especially marked. The plasma level of leptin was significantly decreased during the course of lactation, whereas that of acyl-ghrelin was unchanged. In addition, food intake was negatively correlated with the plasma leptin level during lactation. This study has clarified synchronous changes in the expression of many appetite-regulating peptides in ARC of rats during lactation. Our results suggest that hyperphagia during lactation in rats is caused by decreases in POMC and CCK expression and increases in AgRP expression in ARC, the latter being most notable. Together with the decrease in the blood leptin level, such changes in mRNA expression may explain the further hyperphagia accompanying the course of lactation.

  3. Anabolic androgenic steroid nandrolone decanoate reduces hypothalamic proopiomelanocortin mRNA levels.

    PubMed

    Lindblom, Jonas; Kindlundh, Anna M S; Nyberg, Fred; Bergström, Lena; Wikberg, Jarl E S

    2003-10-03

    Supratherapeutical doses of anabolic androgenic steroids (AASs) have dramatic effects on metabolism in humans, and also inhibit feeding and reduce the rate of body weight gain in rats. In order to test the hypothesis that the AAS metabolic syndrome is accompanied by alterations in the central melanocortin system, we evaluated body weight, food intake and hypothalamic agouti-related protein (AgRP) and proopiomelanocortin (POMC) mRNA levels following administration of different doses of the anabolic androgenic steroid nandrolone decanoate. In order to distinguish changes induced by the steroid treatment per se from those resulting from the reduced food intake and growth rate, we also compared the effect of nandrolone decanoate on AgRP and POMC mRNA expression with both normally fed, and food restricted control groups. We here report that administration of nandrolone specifically reduces arcuate nucleus POMC mRNA levels while not affecting the expression level of AgRP. The effect on POMC expression was not observed in the food restricted controls, excluding the possibility that the observed effect was a mere response to the reduced food intake and body weight. These results raise the possibility that some of the metabolic and behavioural consequences of AAS abuse may be the result of alterations in the melanocortin system.

  4. Apolipoprotein A-IV inhibits AgRP/NPY neurons and activates POMC neurons in the arcuate nucleus

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Apolipoprotein A-IV (apoA-IV) in the brain potently suppresses food intake. However the mechanisms underlying its anorexigenic effects remain to be identified. We first examined the effects of apoA-IV on cellular activities in hypothalamic neurons that co-express agouti-related peptide (AgRP) and ne...

  5. Glucocorticoids decrease body weight and food intake and inhibit appetite regulatory peptide expression in the hypothalamus of rats.

    PubMed

    Liu, Xiao-Yan; Shi, Jian-Hua; DU, Wen-Hua; Fan, Yan-Ping; Hu, Xiao-Lei; Zhang, Chen-Chen; Xu, Huan-Bai; Miao, Yan-Jun; Zhou, Hai-Yan; Xiang, Ping; Chen, Feng-Ling

    2011-09-01

    The aim of the present study was to investigate the effects of glucocorticoids (GCs) on appetite and gene expression of the hypothalamic appetite regulatory peptides, neuropeptide Y (NPY), agouti-related protein (AGRP) and cocaine and amphetamine-regulated transcript (CART), in non-obese and obese rats. Both non-obese and obese rats were randomly assigned to three groups: normal saline, low- and high-dose GC groups (NSG, LDG and HDG, respectively), which received an intraperitoneal injection with normal saline (0.2 ml/100 g) or hydrocortisone sodium succinate at 5 and 15 mg/kg, respectively, for 20 days. The expression levels of NPY, AGRP and CART mRNA in the hypothalamus were measured by real-time quantitative PCR. Non-obese and obese rats were found to undergo weight loss after GC injection, and a higher degree of weight loss was observed in the HDG rats. The average and cumulative food intakes in the obese and non-obese rats injected with high-dose GC were lower compared to that in the NSG (p<0.05). mRNA expression levels of the orexigenic neuropeptides, NPY and AGRP, and the anorexigenic neuropeptide, CART, were significantly lower in the HDG than levels in the NSG for both the obese and non-obese rats (p<0.05). GC treatment decreased appetite and body weight, induced apparent glucolipid metabolic disturbances and hyperinsulinemia, while down-regulated mRNA expression levels of the orexigenic neuropeptides, NPY and AGRP, and anorexigenic neuropeptide, CART, in the hypothalamus in the rats. The mechanism which induces this neuropeptide expression requires further study.

  6. MTII attenuates ghrelin- and food deprivation-induced increases in food hoarding and food intake.

    PubMed

    Keen-Rhinehart, Erin; Bartness, Timothy J

    2007-12-01

    Food deprivation triggers a constellation of physiological and behavioral changes including increases in peripherally-produced ghrelin and centrally-produced agouti-related protein (AgRP). Upon refeeding, food intake is increased in most species, however hamsters primarily increase food hoarding. Food deprivation-induced increases in food hoarding by Siberian hamsters are mimicked by peripheral ghrelin and central AgRP injections. Because food deprivation stimulates ghrelin as well as AgRP synthesis/release, food deprivation-induced increases in hoarding may be mediated by melanocortin 3 or 4 receptor (MC3/4-R) antagonism via AgRP, the MC3/4-R inverse agonist. Therefore, we asked: Can a MC3/4-R agonist block food deprivation- or ghrelin-induced increases in foraging, food hoarding and food intake? This was accomplished by injecting melanotan II (MTII), a synthetic MC3/4-R agonist, into the 3rd ventricle in food deprived, fed or peripheral ghrelin injected hamsters and housed in a running wheel-based food delivery foraging system. Three foraging conditions were used: a) no running wheel access, non-contingent food, b) running wheel access, non-contingent food or c) a foraging requirement for food (10 revolutions/pellet). Food deprivation was a more potent stimulator of foraging and hoarding than ghrelin. Concurrent injections of MTII completely blocked food deprivation- and ghrelin-induced increases in food intake and attenuated, but did not always completely block, food deprivation- and ghrelin-induced increases in food hoarding. Collectively, these data suggest that the MC3/4-R are involved in ghrelin- and food deprivation-induced increases in food intake, but other neurochemical systems, such as previously demonstrated with neuropeptide Y, also are involved in increases in food hoarding as well as foraging.

  7. Hypothalamic Ceramide Levels Regulated by CPT1C Mediate the Orexigenic Effect of Ghrelin

    PubMed Central

    Ramírez, Sara; Martins, Luís; Jacas, Jordi; Carrasco, Patricia; Pozo, Macarena; Clotet, Josep; Serra, Dolors; Hegardt, Fausto G.; Diéguez, Carlos; López, Miguel; Casals, Núria

    2013-01-01

    Recent data suggest that ghrelin exerts its orexigenic action through regulation of hypothalamic AMP-activated protein kinase pathway, leading to a decline in malonyl-CoA levels and desinhibition of carnitine palmitoyltransferase 1A (CPT1A), which increases mitochondrial fatty acid oxidation and ultimately enhances the expression of the orexigenic neuropeptides agouti-related protein (AgRP) and neuropeptide Y (NPY). However, it is unclear whether the brain-specific isoform CPT1C, which is located in the endoplasmic reticulum of neurons, may play a role in this action. Here, we demonstrate that the orexigenic action of ghrelin is totally blunted in CPT1C knockout (KO) mice, despite having the canonical ghrelin signaling pathway activated. We also demonstrate that ghrelin elicits a marked upregulation of hypothalamic C18:0 ceramide levels mediated by CPT1C. Notably, central inhibition of ceramide synthesis with myriocin negated the orexigenic action of ghrelin and normalized the levels of AgRP and NPY, as well as their key transcription factors phosphorylated cAMP-response element–binding protein and forkhead box O1. Finally, central treatment with ceramide induced food intake and orexigenic neuropeptides expression in CPT1C KO mice. Overall, these data indicate that, in addition to formerly reported mechanisms, ghrelin also induces food intake through regulation of hypothalamic CPT1C and ceramide metabolism, a finding of potential importance for the understanding and treatment of obesity. PMID:23493572

  8. Effects of food deprivation on the hypothalamic feeding-regulating peptides gene expressions in serotonin depleted rats.

    PubMed

    Yoshimura, Mitsuhiro; Hagimoto, Marina; Matsuura, Takanori; Ohkubo, Junichi; Ohno, Motoko; Maruyama, Takashi; Ishikura, Toru; Hashimoto, Hirofumi; Kakuma, Tetsuya; Yoshimatsu, Hironobu; Terawaki, Kiyoshi; Uezono, Yasuhito; Toyohira, Yumiko; Yanagihara, Nobuyuki; Ueta, Yoichi

    2014-03-01

    We examined the effects of serotonin (5-HT) depletion induced by peripheral injection of 5-HT synthesis inhibitor p-chlorophenylalanine (PCPA) on the expression of feeding-regulating peptides expressions by using in situ hybridization histochemistry in adult male Wistar rats. PCPA pretreatment had no significant effect on basal levels of oxytocin, corticotropin-releasing hormone (CRH), thyrotropin-releasing hormone (TRH), pro-opiomelanocortin (POMC), cocaine and amphetamine-regulated transcript (CART), neuropeptide-Y (NPY), agouti-related protein (AgRP), melanin-concentrating hormone (MCH) or orexin in the hypothalamus. Food deprivation for 48 h caused a significant decrease in CRH, TRH, POMC, and CART, and a significant increase in NPY, AgRP and MCH. After PCPA treatment, POMC and CART did not decrease despite food deprivation. NPY was significantly increased by food deprivation with PCPA, but was attenuated compared to food deprivation without PCPA. These results suggest that the serotonergic system in the hypothalamus may be involved in the gene expression of POMC, CART, and NPY related to feeding behavior.

  9. Maternal Triclosan consumption alters the appetite regulatory network on Wistar rat offspring and predispose to metabolic syndrome in the adulthood.

    PubMed

    Rabaglino, María Belén; Moreira-Espinoza, María José; Lopez, Juan Pablo; Garcia, Nestor Horacio; Beltramo, Dante

    2016-11-30

    The objectives of this study were to evaluate the effects of maternal oral exposure to the antibacterial Triclosan (TCS) during gestation and lactation on the metabolic status of the adult offspring and on the expression of main genes controlling the appetite regulatory network. Pregnant rats were fed ad-libitum with ground food + TCS (1 mg/kg) from day 14 of gestation to day 20 of lactation (n=3) or ground food (n=3). After litter reduction, 12 males and 12 females born from the TCS exposed rats (TCS, n=24) or not (Control, n=24) were used to evaluate monthly body weight, food intake, plasma levels of cholesterol, glucose and triglycerides, and the hypothalamic mRNA expression of agouti-related protein (Agrp), neuropeptide Y (Npy) and propiomelanocortin (Pomc). Body weight for rats in the TCS group was 12.5% heavier for males at 4 months (p<0.001) and 19% heavier for females at 8 months (p=0.01). Food intake was significantly higher for rats in the TCS group at 5 months of age (p<0.01). Cholesterol and glucose levels were significantly higher for rats in the TCS group at 8 months (p<0.05). mRNA expression of Npy and Agrp were significantly increased in hypothalami of rats in the TCS group at 2 months for males or 8 months for females (p<0.05). In conclusion, low doses of oral TCS consumption by the pregnant and lactating dam increase the hypothalamic expression of the orexigenic neuropeptides Npy and Agrp in the offspring and alter their metabolic status during adulthood, resembling development of the metabolic syndrome.

  10. Regulation of Prolactin in Mice with Altered Hypothalamic Melanocortin Activity

    PubMed Central

    Dutia, Roxanne; Kim, Andrea J.; Mosharov, Eugene; Savontaus, Eriika; Chua, Streamson C.; Wardlaw, Sharon L.

    2012-01-01

    This study used two mouse models with genetic manipulation of the melanocortin system to investigate prolactin regulation. Mice with overexpression of the melanocortin receptor (MC-R) agonist, α-melanocyte-stimulating hormone (Tg-MSH) or deletion of the MC-R antagonist agouti-related protein (AgRP KO) were studied. Male Tg-MSH mice had lower blood prolactin levels at baseline (2.9±0.3 vs 4.7±0.7 ng/ml) and after restraint stress(68 ±6.5 vs 117±22 ng/ml) versus WT (p<0.05); however, pituitary prolactin content was not different. Blood prolactin was also decreased in male AgRP KO mice at baseline (4.2±0.5 vs 7.6±1.3 ng/ml) and after stress (60±4.5 vs 86.1±5.7 ng/ml) vs WT (p <0.001). Pituitary prolactin content was lower in male AgRP KO mice (4.3±0.3 vs 6.7±0.5 μg/pituitary, p <0.001) versus WT. No differences in blood or pituitary prolactin levels were observed in female AgRP KO mice versus WT. Hypothalamic dopamine activity was assessed as the potential mechanism responsible for changes in prolactin levels. Hypothalamic tyrosine hydroxylase mRNA was measured in both genetic models versus WT mice and hypothalamic dopamine and 3,4-dihydroxyphenylacetic acid (DOPAC) content were measured in male AgRP KO and WT mice but neither were significantly different. However, these results do not preclude changes in dopamine activity as dopamine turnover was not directly investigated. This is the first study to show that baseline and stress-induced prolactin release and pituitary prolactin content are reduced in mice with genetic alterations of the melanocortin system and suggests that changes in hypothalamic melanocortin activity may be reflected in measurements of serum prolactin levels. PMID:22800691

  11. Melanocortin receptor accessory protein 2 (MRAP2) interplays with the zebrafish melanocortin 1 receptor (MC1R) but has no effect on its pharmacological profile.

    PubMed

    Cortés, Raúl; Agulleiro, Maria Josep; Navarro, Sandra; Guillot, Raúl; Sánchez, Elisa; Cerdá-Reverter, José Miguel

    2014-05-15

    The melanocortin system is probably one of the most complex hormonal systems since it integrates agonist, encoded in the proopiomelanocortin precursor, endogenous antagonist, agouti signaling protein and agouti-related protein, five different G-protein coupled receptors and two accessory proteins. These accessory proteins interact with melanocortin receptors to allow traffic to the plasma membrane or to regulate the pharmacological profile. The MC1R fill the extension locus, which is primarily responsible for the regulation of pigmentation. In zebrafish, both MC1R and MRAP2 system are expressed in the skin. We demonstrate that zebrafish MC1R physically, or closely, interacts with the MRAP2 system, although this interaction did not result in modification of the studied pharmacological profile. However, progressive fasting induced skin darkening but also an upregulation of the MRAP2 expression in the skin, suggesting an unknown role for MRAP2a that could involve receptor desensitization processes. We also demonstrate that crowding stress induces skin darkening and a downregulation of MC1R expression in the skin.

  12. Proteins.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Doolittle, Russell F.

    1985-01-01

    Examines proteins which give rise to structure and, by virtue of selective binding to other molecules, make genes. Binding sites, amino acids, protein evolution, and molecular paleontology are discussed. Work with encoding segments of deoxyribonucleic acid (exons) and noncoding stretches (introns) provides new information for hypotheses. (DH)

  13. An intrinsic gut leptin-melanocortin pathway modulates intestinal microsomal triglyceride transfer protein and lipid absorption.

    PubMed

    Iqbal, Jahangir; Li, Xiaosong; Chang, Benny Hung-Junn; Chan, Lawrence; Schwartz, Gary J; Chua, Streamson C; Hussain, M Mahmood

    2010-07-01

    Fat is delivered to tissues by apoB-containing lipoproteins synthesized in the liver and intestine with the help of an intracellular chaperone, microsomal triglyceride transfer protein (MTP). Leptin, a hormone secreted by adipose tissue, acts in the brain and on peripheral tissues to regulate fat storage and metabolism. Our aim was to identify the role of leptin signaling in MTP regulation and lipid absorption using several mouse models deficient in leptin receptor (LEPR) signaling and downstream effectors. Mice with spontaneous LEPR B mutations or targeted ablation of LEPR B in proopiomelanocortin (POMC) or agouti gene related peptide (AGRP) expressing cells had increased triglyceride in plasma, liver, and intestine. Furthermore, melanocortin 4 receptor (MC4R) knockout mice expressed a similar triglyceride phenotype, suggesting that leptin might regulate intestinal MTP expression through the melanocortin pathway. Mechanistic studies revealed that the accumulation of triglyceride in the intestine might be secondary to decreased expression of MTP and lipid absorption in these mice. Surgical and chemical blockade of vagal efferent outflow to the intestine in wild-type mice failed to alter the triglyceride phenotype, demonstrating that central neural control mechanisms were likely not involved in the observed regulation of intestinal MTP. Instead, we found that enterocytes express LEPR, POMC, AGRP, and MC4R. We propose that a peripheral, local gut signaling mechanism involving LEPR B and MC4R regulates intestinal MTP and controls intestinal lipid absorption.

  14. Dietary whey reduces energy intake and alters hypothalamic gene expression in obese phyto-oestrogen-deprived male rats.

    PubMed

    Andreoli, María F; Stoker, Cora; Lazzarino, Gisela P; Canesini, Guillermina; Luque, Enrique H; Ramos, Jorge G

    2016-09-01

    Removing dietary phyto-oestrogens in adult male rats causes obesity and diabetes. As whey proteins have been reported to reduce food intake and improve glucose homoeostasis, we investigated whether they could attenuate susceptibility to obesity and diabetes due to phyto-oestrogen deprivation. To this end, thirty male Wistar rats were fed a high-phyto-oestrogen (HP) or a phyto-oestrogen-free (PF) diet for 10 weeks; six rats from each group were killed. The remaining HP animals (six animals) continued receiving the HP diet for 6 weeks. The remaining PF rats (twelve rats) were divided in two groups: one was given the PF diet and the other a variation of the PF diet plus whey protein (PF-W). Body weight, food intake and adipose tissue weights were recorded. Hypothalamic mRNA expressions of orexigenic (neuropeptide Y, agouti-related protein (AgRP)) and anorexigenic (pro-opiomelanocortin (POMC), cocaine-amphetamine-related transcript (CART)) neuropeptides were quantified by real-time PCR. Serum glucose, insulin and total thyroxine (T4), thyroid-stimulating hormone, testosterone and oestradiol were assessed. After 10 weeks of PF diet, increased body weight, adiposity and energy intake, with up-regulation of AgRP and down-regulation of POMC', were observed. Longer treatment exacerbated these results, increased total T4 levels, reduced oestradiol levels and impaired glucose homoeostasis. PF-W reduced energy intake and increased POMC expression; however, body weight and adiposity remained unchanged. PF-W could not prevent the hormonal changes or the high circulating glucose levels induced by phyto-oestrogen deprivation, but reduced fasting insulin. These data demonstrate that, although 6 weeks of whey administration could not prevent obesity in phyto-oestrogen-deprived rats, the reduction in energy intake and circulating insulin could be beneficial with longer treatments.

  15. Identification of a small-molecule ligand that activates the neuropeptide receptor GPR171 and increases food intake

    PubMed Central

    Wardman, Jonathan H.; Gomes, Ivone; Bobeck, Erin N.; Stockert, Jennifer A.; Kapoor, Abhijeet; Bisignano, Paola; Gupta, Achla; Mezei, Mihaly; Kumar, Sanjai; Filizola, Marta; Devi, Lakshmi A.

    2016-01-01

    Several neuropeptide systems in the hypothalamus, including neuropeptide Y and agouti-related protein (AgRP), control food intake. Peptides derived from proSAAS, a precursor implicated in the regulation of body weight, also control food intake. GPR171 is a heterotrimeric guanine nucleotide–binding protein (G protein)– coupled receptor (GPCR) for BigLEN (b-LEN), a peptide derived from proSAAS. To facilitate studies exploring the physiological role of GPR171, we sought to identify small-molecule ligands for this receptor by performing a virtual screen of a compound library for interaction with a homology model of GPR171. We identified MS0015203 as an agonist of GPR171 and demonstrated the selectivity of MS0015203 for GPR171 by testing the binding of this compound to 80 other membrane proteins, including family A GPCRs. Reducing the expression of GPR171 by shRNA (short hairpin RNA)–mediated knockdown blunted the cellular and tissue response to MS0015203. Peripheral injection of MS0015203 into mice increased food intake and body weight, and these responses were significantly attenuated in mice with decreased expression of GPR171 in the hypothalamus. Together, these results suggest that MS0015203 is a useful tool to probe the pharmacological and functional properties of GPR171 and that ligands targeting GPR171 may eventually lead to therapeutics for food-related disorders. PMID:27245612

  16. Protein

    MedlinePlus

    ... Search for: Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health Email People Departments Calendar Careers Give my.harvard ... Nutrition Source Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health > The Nutrition Source > What Should I Eat? > Protein ...

  17. Protein

    MedlinePlus

    ... Go lean with protein. • Choose lean meats and poultry. Lean beef cuts include round steaks (top loin, ... main dishes. • Use nuts to replace meat or poultry, not in addition to meat or poultry (i. ...

  18. Early weaning is associated with higher neuropeptide Y (NPY) and lower cocaine- and amphetamine-regulated transcript (CART) expressions in the paraventricular nucleus (PVN) in adulthood.

    PubMed

    Younes-Rapozo, Viviane; de Moura, Egberto Gaspar; da Silva Lima, Natália; Barradas, Penha Cristina; Manhães, Alex C; de Oliveira, Elaine; Lisboa, Patricia Cristina

    2012-12-28

    The interruption of lactation for a short period, without the use of pharmacological substances or maternal separation, causes offspring malnutrition and hypoleptinaemia and programmes for metabolic disorders such as higher body weight and adiposity, hyperphagia, hyperleptinaemia and central leptin resistance in adulthood. Here, in order to clarify the mechanisms underlying the phenotype observed in adult early-weaned (EW) rats, we studied the expression of neuropeptide Y (NPY), agouti-related peptide (AgRP), pro-opiomelanocortin (POMC) and cocaine- and amphetamine-regulated transcript (CART) in different hypothalamic nuclei by immunohistochemistry and Western blot. In the EW group, the teats of lactating rats were blocked with a bandage to interrupt lactation during the last 3 d, while control pups had free access to milk throughout the entire lactation period. At age 180 d, EW offspring showed higher NPY staining in the paraventricular nucleus (PVN), as well as NPY protein content (+68 %) in total hypothalamus than control ones. AgRP showed no changes in staining or Western blot. POMC content was not affected; however, its distribution pattern was altered. CART-positive cells of EW offspring had lower immunoreactivity associated with reduced cell number in the PVN and lower protein content ( - 38 %) in total hypothalamus. The present data indicate that precocious weaning can imprint the neuronal circuitry, especially in the PVN, and cause a long-term effect on the expression of specific orexigenic and anorexigenic neuropeptides, such as NPY and CART, that can be caused by leptin resistance and are coherent with the hyperphagia observed in these animals.

  19. Apolipoprotein A-IV inhibits AgRP/NPY neurons and activates POMC neurons in the arcuate nucleus

    PubMed Central

    Xu, Yuanzhong; Shu, Gang; Wang, Chunmei; Yang, Yongjie; Saito, Kenji; Xu, Pingwen; Hinton, Antentor Othrell; Yan, Xiaofeng; Yu, Likai; Wu, Qi; Tso, Patrick; Tong, Qingchun; Xu, Yong

    2015-01-01

    Background/Aims Apolipoprotein A-IV (apoA-IV) in the brain potently suppresses food intake. However the mechanisms underlying its anorexigenic effects remain to be identified. Methods We first examined the effects of apoA-IV on cellular activities in hypothalamic neurons that co-express agouti-related peptide (AgRP) and neuropeptide Y (NPY) and in neurons that express pro-opiomelanocortin (POMC). We then compared anorexigenic effects of apoA-IV in wild type mice and in mutant mice lacking melanocortin 4 receptors (MC4Rs, the receptors of AgRP and the POMC gene product). Finally, we examined expression of apoA-IV in mouse hypothalamus and quantified its protein levels at fed vs. fasted states. Results We demonstrate that apoA-IV inhibited the firing rate of AgRP/NPY neurons. The decreased firing was associated with hyperpolarized membrane potential and decreased miniature excitatory postsynaptic current. We further used c-fos immunoreactivity to show that intracerebroventricular (i.c.v.) injections of apoA-IV abolished the fasting-induced activation of AgRP/NPY neurons in mice. Further, we found that apoA-IV depolarized POMC neurons and increased their firing rate. In addition, genetic deletion of MC4Rs blocked anorexigenic effects of i.c.v. apoA-IV. Finally, we detected endogenous apoA-IV in multiple neural populations in mouse hypothalamus, including AgRP/NPY neurons, and food deprivation suppresses hypothalamic apoA-IV protein levels. Conclusion Our findings support a model where central apoA-IV inhibits AgRP/NPY neurons and activates POMC neurons to activate MC4Rs, which in turn suppresses food intake. PMID:26337236

  20. Molecular and Functional Analysis of Human β-Defensin 3 Action at Melanocortin Receptors

    PubMed Central

    Nix, Matthew A.; Kaelin, Christopher B.; Ta, Tina; Weis, Allison; Morton, Gregory J.; Barsh, Gregory S.; Millhauser, Glenn L.

    2013-01-01

    Summary The β-defensins are a class of small, cationic proteins first recognized as antimicrobial components of the innate and adaptive immune system. More recently, one of the major β-defensins produced in skin, β-defensin 3, has been discovered to function as a melanocortin receptor ligand in vivo and in vitro, but its biophysical and pharmacological basis of action has been enigmatic. Here we report functional and biochemical studies focused on human β-defensin 3 (HBD3) and melanocortin receptors 1 and 4. Genetic and pharmacologic studies indicate that HBD3 acts as a neutral melanocortin receptor antagonist, capable of blocking the action of either stimulatory agonists, such as α-melanocyte stimulating hormone, or inhibitory inverse agonists such as Agouti signaling protein (Asip) and Agouti-related protein (Agrp). A comprehensive structure-function analysis demonstrates that two patches of positively charged residues, located on opposite poles of HBD3 and spatially organized by the compact β-defensin fold, are primarily responsible for high affinity binding to melanocortin receptors. These findings identify a distinct mode of melanocortin receptor-ligand interactions based primarily on electrostatic complementarity, with implications for designing ligands that target melanocortin and potentially other seven transmembrane receptors. PMID:23790489

  1. Fto colocalizes with a satiety mediator oxytocin in the brain and upregulates oxytocin gene expression

    SciTech Connect

    Olszewski, Pawel K.; Fredriksson, Robert; Eriksson, Jenny D.; Mitra, Anaya; Radomska, Katarzyna J.; Gosnell, Blake A.; Solvang, Maria N.; Levine, Allen S.; Schioeth, Helgi B.

    2011-05-13

    Highlights: {yields} The majority of neurons synthesizing a satiety mediator, oxytocin, coexpress Fto. {yields} The level of colocalization is similar in the male and female brain. {yields} Fto overexpression in hypothalamic neurons increases oxytocin mRNA levels by 50%. {yields} Oxytocin does not affect Fto expression through negative feedback mechanisms. -- Abstract: Single nucleotide polymorphisms in the fat mass and obesity-associated (FTO) gene have been associated with obesity in humans. Alterations in Fto expression in transgenic animals affect body weight, energy expenditure and food intake. Fto, a nuclear protein and proposed transcription co-factor, has been speculated to affect energy balance through a functional relationship with specific genes encoding feeding-related peptides. Herein, we employed double immunohistochemistry and showed that the majority of neurons synthesizing a satiety mediator, oxytocin, coexpress Fto in the brain of male and female mice. We then overexpressed Fto in a murine hypothalamic cell line and, using qPCR, detected a 50% increase in the level of oxytocin mRNA. Expression levels of several other feeding-related genes, including neuropeptide Y (NPY) and Agouti-related protein (AgRP), were unaffected by the FTO transfection. Addition of 10 and 100 nmol oxytocin to the cell culture medium did not affect Fto expression in hypothalamic cells. We conclude that Fto, a proposed transcription co-factor, influences expression of the gene encoding a satiety mediator, oxytocin.

  2. Behind melanocortin antagonist overexpression in the zebrafish brain: A behavioral and transcriptomic approach.

    PubMed

    Guillot, Raúl; Cortés, Raúl; Navarro, Sandra; Mischitelli, Morena; García-Herranz, Víctor; Sánchez, Elisa; Cal, Laura; Navarro, Juan Carlos; Míguez, Jesús M; Afanasyev, Sergey; Krasnov, Aleksei; Cone, Roger D; Rotllant, Josep; Cerdá-Reverter, Jose Miguel

    2016-06-01

    Melanocortin signaling is regulated by the binding of naturally occurring antagonists, agouti-signaling protein (ASIP) and agouti-related protein (AGRP) that compete with melanocortin peptides by binding to melanocortin receptors to regulate energy balance and growth. Using a transgenic model overexpressing ASIP, we studied the involvement of melanocortin system in the feeding behaviour, growth and stress response of zebrafish. Our data demonstrate that ASIP overexpression results in enhanced growth but not obesity. The differential growth is explained by increased food intake and feeding efficiency mediated by a differential sensitivity of the satiety system that seems to involve the cocaine- and amphetamine- related transcript (CART). Stress response was similar in both genotypes. Brain transcriptome of transgenic (ASIP) vs wild type (WT) fish was compared using microarrays. WT females and males exhibited 255 genes differentially expressed (DEG) but this difference was reduced to 31 after ASIP overexpression. Statistical analysis revealed 1122 DEG when considering only fish genotype but 1066 and 981 DEG when comparing ASIP males or females with their WT counterparts, respectively. Interaction between genotype and sex significantly affected the expression of 97 genes. Several neuronal systems involved in the control of food intake were identified which displayed a differential expression according to the genotype of the fish that unravelling the flow of melanocortinergic information through the central pathways that controls the energy balance. The information provided herein will help to elucidate new central systems involved in control of obesity and should be of invaluable use for sustaining fish production systems.

  3. Dietary l-leucine supplementation of lactating rats results in a tendency to increase lean/fat ratio associated to lower orexigenic neuropeptide expression in hypothalamus.

    PubMed

    López, N; Sánchez, J; Picó, C; Palou, A; Serra, F

    2010-07-01

    The aim of this study was to assess the effects of dietary leucine supplementation in lactating dams, particularly on energy homeostasis through signaling mechanisms in the central nervous system. Dams were fed ad libitum with standard diet during pregnancy (control dams) or supplemented with 2% leucine (leucine-supplemented dams) from delivery onwards. Food intake, body weight and composition were periodically recorded. Hypothalamus was collected at the end of lactation, and the expression of neuropeptide Y (NPY), agouti-related protein (AgRP) pro-opiomelanocortin (POMC), cocaine and amphetamine regulated transcript (CART), insulin receptor (InsR), ghrelin receptor (GSHR), melanocortin receptor (MCR4), leptin receptor (Ob-Rb) and suppressor of cytokine signaling 3 (SOCS3) were analyzed. Dietary leucine supplementation to lactating rats increased plasma leucine by 56%, modulated body composition and contributed to a tendency of higher ratio of lean/fat mass content of dams during lactation, without affecting food intake, thermogenesis capacity or body or tissue/organs weights. No differences in body weight of offspring from control and leucine-supplemented dams were found. The expression of orexigenic peptides (NPY and AgRP) decreased in leucine-dams, whereas the expression of anorexigenic peptides (POMC and CART), the hypothalamic receptors of insulin, ghrelin, melanocortin and leptin and SOCS3 did not change by leucine supplementation. In conclusion, increased leucine intake during lactation may contribute to a healthier profile of body composition in dams, without compromising the growth and development of the progeny by a mechanism associated with lower expression of orexigenic neuropeptides in hypothalamus.

  4. Dexmedetomidine ameliorates muscle wasting and attenuates the alteration of hypothalamic neuropeptides and inflammation in endotoxemic rats

    PubMed Central

    Cheng, Minhua; Gao, Tao; Xi, Fengchan; Cao, Chun; Chen, Yan; Zhao, Chenyan; Li, Qiurong

    2017-01-01

    Dexmedetomidine is generally used for sedaton in critically ill, it could shorten duration of mechanical ventilation, ICU stay and lower basic metabolism. However, the exact mechanism of these positive effects remains unkown. Here we investigated the hypothesis that dexmedetomidine could ameliorate muscle wasting in endotoxemic rats and whether it was related to hypothalamic neuropeptides alteration and inflammation. Fourty-eight adult male Sprague–Dawley rats were intraperitoneally injected with lipopolysaccharide (LPS) (5 mg/kg) or saline, followed by 50 μg/kg dexmedetomidine or saline administration via the femoral vein catheter (infusion at 5 μg·kg-1·hr-1). Twenty-four hours after injection, hypothalamus tissues and skeletal muscle were obtained. Muscle wasting was measured by the mRNA expression of two E3 ubiquitin ligases, muscle atrophy F-box (MAFbx) and muscle ring finger 1 (MuRF-1) as well as 3-methylhistidine (3-MH) and tyrosine release. Hypothalamic inflammatory markers and neuropeptides expression were also detected in all four groups. Results showed that LPS administration led to significant increase in hypothalamic inflammation together with muscle wasting. Increased hypothalamic neuropeptides, proopiomelanocortin (POMC), cocaine and amphetamine-related transcript (CART) and neuropeptides Y (NPY) and decreased agouti-related protein (AgRP) were also observed. Meanwhile dexmedetomidine administration ameliorated muscle wasting, hypothalamic inflammation and modulated the alteration of neuropeptides, POMC, CART and AgRP, in endotoxemic rats. In conclusion, dexmedetomidine could alleviate muscle wasting in endotoxemic rats, and it could also attenuate the alteration of hypothalamic neuropeptides and reduce hypothalamic inflammation. PMID:28358856

  5. Maternal and postweaning folic acid supplementation interact to influence body weight, insulin resistance, and food intake regulatory gene expression in rat offspring in a sex-specific manner.

    PubMed

    Huot, Pedro S P; Ly, Anna; Szeto, Ignatius M Y; Reza-López, Sandra A; Cho, Daniel; Kim, Young-In; Anderson, G Harvey

    2016-04-01

    Maternal intake of multivitamins or folic acid above the basal dietary requirement alters the growth and metabolic trajectory of rat offspring. We hypothesized that a modest increase in the folic acid content of maternal diets would alter the offspring's metabolic phenotype, and that these effects could be corrected by matching the folic acid content of the offspring's diet with that of the maternal diet. Female Sprague-Dawley rats were placed on a control or a 2.5× folic acid-supplemented diet prior to mating and during pregnancy and lactation. At weaning, pups from each maternal diet group were randomized to the control or to the 2.5× folic acid-supplemented diet for 25 weeks. Male pups from dams fed the folic acid-supplemented diet were 3.7% heavier than those from control-fed dams and had lower mRNA expression for leptin receptor Obrb isoform (Lepr) (11%) and Agouti-related protein (Agrp) (14%). In contrast, female pups from folic acid-supplemented dams were 5% lighter than those from control-fed dams and had lower proopiomelanocortin (Pomc) (42%), Lepr (32%), and Agrp (13%), but higher neuropeptide Y (Npy) (18%) mRNA expression. Folic acid supplementation ameliorated the alterations induced by maternal folic acid supplementation in male pups and led to the lowest insulin resistance, but the effects were smaller in female pups and led to the highest insulin resistance. In conclusion, maternal folic acid supplementation at 2.5× the control level was associated with alterations in body weight and hypothalamic gene expression in rat offspring in a sex-specific manner, and some of these effects were attenuated by postweaning folic acid supplementation.

  6. Arcuate Na+,K+-ATPase senses systemic energy states and regulates feeding behavior through glucose-inhibited neurons.

    PubMed

    Kurita, Hideharu; Xu, Kai Y; Maejima, Yuko; Nakata, Masanori; Dezaki, Katsuya; Santoso, Putra; Yang, Yifei; Arai, Takeshi; Gantulga, Darambazar; Muroya, Shinji; Lefor, Alan K; Kakei, Masafumi; Watanabe, Eiju; Yada, Toshihiko

    2015-08-15

    Feeding is regulated by perception in the hypothalamus, particularly the first-order arcuate nucleus (ARC) neurons, of the body's energy state. However, the cellular device for converting energy states to the activity of critical neurons in ARC is less defined. We here show that Na(+),K(+)-ATPase (NKA) in ARC senses energy states to regulate feeding. Fasting-induced systemic ghrelin rise and glucose lowering reduced ATP-hydrolyzing activity of NKA and its substrate ATP level, respectively, preferentially in ARC. Lowering glucose concentration (LG), which mimics fasting, decreased intracellular NAD(P)H and increased Na(+) concentration in single ARC neurons that subsequently exhibited [Ca(2+)]i responses to LG, showing that they were glucose-inhibited (GI) neurons. Third ventricular injection of the NKA inhibitor ouabain induced c-Fos expression in agouti-related protein (AgRP) neurons in ARC and evoked neuropeptide Y (NPY)-dependent feeding. When injected focally into ARC, ouabain stimulated feeding and mRNA expressions for NPY and AgRP. Ouabain increased [Ca(2+)]i in single NPY/AgRP neurons with greater amplitude than in proopiomelanocortin neurons in ARC. Conversely, the specific NKA activator SSA412 suppressed fasting-induced feeding and LG-induced [Ca(2+)]i increases in ARC GI neurons. NPY/AgRP neurons highly expressed NKAα3, whose knockdown impaired feeding behavior. These results demonstrate that fasting, via ghrelin rise and LG, suppresses NKA enzyme/pump activity in ARC and thereby promotes the activation of GI neurons and NPY/AgRP-dependent feeding. This study identifies ARC NKA as a hypothalamic sensor and converter of metabolic states to key neuronal activity and feeding behaviour, providing a new target to treat hyperphagic obesity and diabetes.

  7. Hunger States Control the Directions of Synaptic Plasticity via Switching Cell Type-Specific Subunits of NMDA Receptors.

    PubMed

    Qi, Yong; Yang, Yunlei

    2015-09-23

    It remains largely unknown whether and how hunger states control activity-dependent synaptic plasticity, such as long-term potentiation (LTP) and long-term depression (LTD). We here report that both LTP and LTD of excitatory synaptic strength within the appetite control circuits residing in hypothalamic arcuate nucleus (ARC) behave in a manner of hunger states dependence and cell type specificity. For instance, we find that tetanic stimulation induces LTP at orexigenic agouti-related protein (AgRP) neurons in ad libitum fed mice, whereas it induces LTD in food-deprived mice. In an opposite direction, the same induction protocol induces LTD at anorexigenic pro-opiomelanocortin (POMC) neurons in fed mice but weak LTP in deprived mice. Mechanistically, we also find that food deprivation increases the expressions of NR2C/NR2D/NR3-containing NMDA receptors (NMDARs) at AgRP neurons that contribute to the inductions of LTD, whereas it decreases their expressions at POMC neurons. Collectively, our data reveal that hunger states control the directions of activity-dependent synaptic plasticity by switching NMDA receptor subpopulations in a cell type-specific manner, providing insights into NMDAR-mediated interactions between energy states and associative memory. Significance statement: Based on the experiments performed in this study, we demonstrate that activity-dependent synaptic plasticity is also under the control of energy states by regulating NMDAR subpopulations in a cell type-specific manner. We thus propose a reversible memory configuration constructed from energy states-dependent cell type-specific bidirectional conversions of LTP and LTD. Together with the distinct functional roles played by NMDAR signaling in the control of food intake and energy states, these findings reveal a new reciprocal interaction between energy states and associative memory, one that might serve as a target for therapeutic treatments of the energy-related memory disorders or vice versa.

  8. The differential expression of MC1R regulators in dorsal and ventral quail plumages during embryogenesis: Implications for plumage pattern formation

    PubMed Central

    Gluckman, Thanh-Lan; Mundy, Nicholas I.

    2017-01-01

    Melanin pigmentation patterns are ubiquitous in animals and function in crypsis, physical protection, thermoregulation and signalling. In vertebrates, pigmentation patterns formed over large body regions as well as within appendages (hair/feathers) may be due to the differential distribution of pigment producing cells (melanocytes) and/or regulation of the melanin synthesis pathway. We took advantage of the pigmentation patterns of Japanese quail embryos (pale ventrum and patterned feathers dorsally) to explore the role of genes and their transcripts in regulating the function of the melanocortin-1-receptor (MC1R) via 1. activation: pro-opiomelanocortin (POMC), endoproteases prohormone convertase 1 (PC1) and 2 (PC2), and 2. inhibition—agouti signaling and agouti-related protein (ASIP and AGRP, respectively). Melanocytes are present in all feather follicles at both 8 and 12 days post-fertilisation (E8/E12), so differential deposition of melanocytes is not responsible for pigmentation patterns in embryonic quail. POMC transcripts expressed were a subset of those found in chicken and POMC expression within feather follicles was strong. PC1 was not expressed in feather follicles. PC2 was strongly expressed in all feather follicles at E12. ASIP transcript expression was variable and we report four novel ASIP transcripts. ASIP is strongly expressed in ventral feather follicles, but not dorsally. AGRP expression within feather follicles was weak. These results demonstrate that the pale-bellied quail phenotype probably involves inhibition of MC1R, as found previously. However, quail may require MC1R activation for eumelanogenesis in dorsal feathers which may have important implications for an understanding of colour pattern formation in vertebrates. PMID:28355309

  9. Obesity in MENX Rats Is Accompanied by High Circulating Levels of Ghrelin and Improved Insulin Sensitivity.

    PubMed

    Wiedemann, Tobias; Bielohuby, Maximilian; Müller, Timo D; Bidlingmaier, Martin; Pellegata, Natalia S

    2016-02-01

    Ghrelin, the natural ligand of the growth hormone secretagogue receptor type 1a (GHS-R1a), is mainly secreted from the stomach and regulates food intake and energy homeostasis. p27 regulates cell cycle progression in many cell types. Here, we report that rats affected by the multiple endocrine neoplasia syndrome MENX, caused by a p27 mutation, develop pancreatic islet hyperplasia containing elevated numbers of ghrelin-producing ε-cells. The metabolic phenotype of MENX-affected rats featured high endogenous acylated and unacylated plasma ghrelin levels. Supporting increased ghrelin action, MENX rats show increased food intake, enhanced body fat mass, and elevated plasma levels of triglycerides and cholesterol. Ghrelin effect on food intake was confirmed by treating MENX rats with a GHS-R1a antagonist. At 7.5 months, MENX-affected rats show decreased mRNA levels of hypothalamic GHS-R1a, neuropeptide Y (NPY), and agouti-related protein (AgRP), suggesting that prolonged hyperghrelinemia may lead to decreased ghrelin efficacy. In line with ghrelin's proposed role in glucose metabolism, we find decreased glucose-stimulated insulin secretion in MENX rats, while insulin sensitivity is improved. In summary, we provide a novel nontransgenic rat model with high endogenous ghrelin plasma levels and, interestingly, improved glucose tolerance. This model might aid in identifying new therapeutic approaches for obesity and obesity-related diseases, including type 2 diabetes.

  10. Understanding how discrete populations of hypothalamic neurons orchestrate complicated behavioral states

    PubMed Central

    Graebner, Allison K.; Iyer, Manasi; Carter, Matthew E.

    2015-01-01

    A major question in systems neuroscience is how a single population of neurons can interact with the rest of the brain to orchestrate complex behavioral states. The hypothalamus contains many such discrete neuronal populations that individually regulate arousal, feeding, and drinking. For example, hypothalamic neurons that express hypocretin (Hcrt) neuropeptides can sense homeostatic and metabolic factors affecting wakefulness and orchestrate organismal arousal. Neurons that express agouti-related protein (AgRP) can sense the metabolic needs of the body and orchestrate a state of hunger. The organum vasculosum of the lamina terminalis (OVLT) can detect the hypertonicity of blood and orchestrate a state of thirst. Each hypothalamic population is sufficient to generate complicated behavioral states through the combined efforts of distinct efferent projections. The principal challenge to understanding these brain systems is therefore to determine the individual roles of each downstream projection for each behavioral state. In recent years, the development and application of temporally precise, genetically encoded tools has greatly improved our understanding of the structure and function of these neural systems. This review will survey recent advances in our understanding of how these individual hypothalamic populations can orchestrate complicated behavioral states due to the combined efforts of individual downstream projections. PMID:26300745

  11. Brain-gut axis and its role in the control of food intake.

    PubMed

    Konturek, S J; Konturek, J W; Pawlik, T; Brzozowski, T

    2004-03-01

    Gastrointestinal tract (GIT) and nervous system, both central (CNS) and enteric (ENS), are involved in two-way extrinsic communication by parasympathetic and sympathetic nerves, each comprising efferents fibers such as cholinergic and noradrenergic, respectively, and afferent sensory fibers required for gut-brain signaling. Afferent nerves are equipped with numerous sensors at their terminals in the gut related to visceral mechano- chemo- and noci-receptors, whose excitations may trigger a variety of visceral reflexes regulating GIT functions, including the appetitive behaviour. Food intake depends upon various influences from the CNS as well as from the body energy stores (adipocytes) that express and release the product of Ob gene, leptin, in proportion to fat stored and acting in long-term regulation of food intake. Leptin acts through receptors (Ob-R) present in afferent visceral nerves and hypothalamic arcuate nucleus (ARC), whose neurons are capable of expressing and releasing neuropeptide Y (NPY) and agouti related protein (AgRP) that activate the ingestive behaviour through paraventricular nucleus (PVN) (iVfeeding centerli). In addition, to this long-term regulation, a short-term regulation, on meal-to-meal basis, is secured by several gut hormones, such as cholecystokinin (CCK), peptides YY (PYY) and oxyntomodulin (OXM), released from the endocrine intestinal cells and acting via G-protein coupled receptors (GPCR) either on afferent nerves or directly on ARC neurons, which in turn inhibit expression and release of food-intake stimulating NPY and AgRP, thereby inducing satiety through inhibition of PVN. In contrast, during fasting, the GIT, especially oxyntic mucosa, expresses and releases appetite stimulating (orexigenic) factors such as ghrelin and orexins (OX) -A and OX-B, and cannabinoid CB1 agonist. Ghrelin activates growth-hormone secretagogue receptor (GHS-R) in hypothalamic ARC and stimulates growth hormone (GH) release and in vagal afferents to

  12. Interleukin 6 Deficiency Modulates the Hypothalamic Expression of Energy Balance Regulating Peptides during Pregnancy in Mice

    PubMed Central

    Pazos, Patricia; Lima, Luis; Casanueva, Felipe F.; Diéguez, Carlos; García, María C.

    2013-01-01

    Pregnancy is associated with hyperphagia, increased adiposity and multiple neuroendocrine adaptations. Maternal adipose tissue secretes rising amounts of interleukin 6 (IL6), which acts peripherally modulating metabolic function and centrally increasing energy expenditure and reducing body fat. To explore the role of IL6 in the central mechanisms governing dam's energy homeostasis, early, mid and late pregnant (gestational days 7, 13 and 18) wild-type (WT) and Il6 knockout mice (Il6-KO) were compared with virgin controls at diestrus. Food intake, body weight and composition as well as indirect calorimetry measurements were performed in vivo. Anabolic and orexigenic peptides: neuropeptide Y (Npy) and agouti-related peptide (Agrp); and catabolic and anorectic neuropeptides: proopiomelanocortin (Pomc), corticotrophin and thyrotropin-releasing hormone (Crh and Trh) mRNA levels were determined by in situ hybridization. Real time-PCR and western-blot were used for additional tissue gene expression and protein studies. Non-pregnant Il6-KO mice were leaner than WT mice due to a decrease in fat but not in lean body mass. Pregnant Il6-KO mice had higher fat accretion despite similar body weight gain than WT controls. A decreased fat utilization in absence of Il6 might explain this effect, as shown by increased respiratory exchange ratio (RER) in virgin Il6-KO mice. Il6 mRNA levels were markedly enhanced in adipose tissue but reduced in hypothalamus of mid and late pregnant WT mice. Trh expression was also stimulated at gestational day 13 and lack of Il6 blunted this effect. Conversely, in late pregnant mice lessened hypothalamic Il6 receptor alpha (Il6ra), Pomc and Crh mRNA were observed. Il6 deficiency during this stage up-regulated Npy and Agrp expression, while restoring Pomc mRNA levels to virgin values. Together these results demonstrate that IL6/IL6Ra system modulates Npy/Agrp, Pomc and Trh expression during mouse pregnancy, supporting a role of IL6 in the central

  13. Effects of starvation on the expression of feeding related neuropeptides in the larval zebrafish hypothalamus.

    PubMed

    Shanshan, Liu; Cuizhen, Zhang; Gang, Peng

    2016-09-01

    Vertebrate feeding behavior is regulated by neuropeptide Y (NPY), GALANIN and GMAP prepropeptide (GAL), agouti related neuropeptide (AGRP) and proopiomelanocortin (POMC) in the hypothalamus. However, there are few studies on the relationship between these neuropeptides and feeding in zebrafish larvae. In the present study, real-time quantitative PCR and in situ hybridization were applied to examine the expression levels of npy, galanin, agrp and pomca in the hypothalamus of zebrafish larvae after starvation and re-feeding. The results showed the expression of agrp and galanin increased significantly after starvation compared to the control group, whilst the expression of pomca decreased significantly compared to control. If the animals were re-fed for two days after starvation, the expression of pomca, agrp and galanin showed no significant difference from the control. Expression of npy did not alter in either condition. These results indicate that starvation increases expression levels of agrp and galanin, and reduces the pomca expression. In addition, these starvation-induced changes can be reversed by re-feeding.

  14. Melanocortin antagonism ameliorates muscle wasting and inflammation in chronic kidney disease.

    PubMed

    Cheung, Wai W; Mak, Robert H

    2012-11-01

    Aberrant melanocortin signaling has been implicated in the pathogenesis of wasting in chronic kidney disease (CKD). Previously, we demonstrated that agouti-related peptide (AgRP), a melenocortin-4 receptor antagonist, reduced CKD-associated cachexia in CKD mice. Our previous studies with AgRP utilized dual energy X-ray (DXA) densitometry to assess the body composition in mice (Cheung W, Kuo HJ, Markison S, Chen C, Foster AC, Marks DL, Mak RH. J Am Soc Nephrol 18: 2517-2524, 2007; Cheung W, Yu PX, Little BM, Cone RD, Marks DL, Mak RH. J Clin Invest 115: 1659-1665, 2005). DXA is unable to differentiate water content in mice, and fluid retention in CKD may lead to an overestimate of lean mass. In this study, we employed quantitative magnetic resonance technique to evaluate body composition change following central administration of AgRP in a CKD mouse model. AgRP treatment improved energy expenditure, total body mass, fat mass, and lean body mass in CKD mouse. We also investigated the effect of CKD-associated cachexia on the signaling pathways leading to wasting in skeletal muscle, as well as whether these changes can be ameliorated by central administration of AgRP. AgRP treatment caused an overall decrease in proinflammatory cytokines, which may be one important mechanism of its effects. Muscle wasting in CKD may be due to the activation of proteolytic pathways as well as inhibition of myogenesis and muscle regeneration processes. Our results suggest that these aberrant pathological pathways leading to muscle wasting in CKD mice were ameliorated by central administration of AgRP.

  15. Creating leptin-like biofunctions by active immunization against chicken leptin receptor in growing chickens.

    PubMed

    Lei, M M; Wu, S Q; Shao, X B; Li, X W; Chen, Z; Ying, S J; Shi, Z D

    2015-01-01

    In this study, immunization against chicken leptin receptor (cLEPR) extracellular domain (ECD) was applied to investigate leptin regulation and LEPR biofunction in growing chicken pullets. A recombinant protein (cLEPR ECD) based on the cLEPR complemenary DNA sequence corresponding to the 582nd to 796th amino acid residues of cLEPR mature peptide was prepared and used as antigen. Immunization against cLEPR ECD in growing chickens increased anti-cLEPR ECD antibody titers in blood, enhanced proportions of phosphorylated janus kinase 2 (JAK2) and served as signal transducer and activator of transcription 3 (STAT3) protein in liver tissue. Chicken live weight gain and abdominal fat mass were significantly decreased (P < 0.05), but feed intake was stimulated by cLEPR ECD immunization (P < 0.05). The treatment also upregulated the gene expression levels of lepR, AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK), acetyl CoA carboxylase-2 (ACC2), and uncoupling protein 3 (UCP3) in liver, abdominal fat, and breast muscle (P < 0.05) but decreased fasn expression levels (P < 0.01). Apart from that of lepR, the expression of appetite-regulating genes, such as orexigenic genes, agouti-related peptide (AgRP) and neuropeptide Y (NPY), were upregulated (P < 0.01), whereas the anorexigenic gene proopiomelanocortin (POMC) was downregulated in the hypothalamic tissue of cLEPR-immunized pullets (P < 0.01). Blood concentrations of metabolic molecules, such as glucose, triglycerides, and very-low-density lipoprotein, were significantly decreased in cLEPR-immunized pullets but those of cholesterol, high-density lipoprotein, and low-density lipoprotein increased. These results demonstrate that antibodies to membrane proximal cLEPR ECD enhance cLEPR signal transduction, which stimulates metabolism and reduces fat deposition in chickens.

  16. New inducible genetic method reveals critical roles of GABA in the control of feeding and metabolism.

    PubMed

    Meng, Fantao; Han, Yong; Srisai, Dollada; Belakhov, Valery; Farias, Monica; Xu, Yong; Palmiter, Richard D; Baasov, Timor; Wu, Qi

    2016-03-29

    Currently available inducible Cre/loxP systems, despite their considerable utility in gene manipulation, have pitfalls in certain scenarios, such as unsatisfactory recombination rates and deleterious effects on physiology and behavior. To overcome these limitations, we designed a new, inducible gene-targeting system by introducing an in-frame nonsense mutation into the coding sequence of Cre recombinase (nsCre). Mutant mRNAs transcribed from nsCre transgene can be efficiently translated into full-length, functional Cre recombinase in the presence of nonsense suppressors such as aminoglycosides. In a proof-of-concept model, GABA signaling from hypothalamic neurons expressing agouti-related peptide (AgRP) was genetically inactivated within 4 d after treatment with a synthetic aminoglycoside. Disruption of GABA synthesis in AgRP neurons in young adult mice led to a dramatic loss of body weight due to reduced food intake and elevated energy expenditure; they also manifested glucose intolerance. In contrast, older mice with genetic inactivation of GABA signaling by AgRP neurons had only transient reduction of feeding and body weight; their energy expenditure and glucose tolerance were unaffected. These results indicate that GABAergic signaling from AgRP neurons plays a key role in the control of feeding and metabolism through an age-dependent mechanism. This new genetic technique will augment current tools used to elucidate mechanisms underlying many physiological and neurological processes.

  17. New inducible genetic method reveals critical roles of GABA in the control of feeding and metabolism

    PubMed Central

    Meng, Fantao; Han, Yong; Srisai, Dollada; Belakhov, Valery; Farias, Monica; Xu, Yong; Palmiter, Richard D.; Baasov, Timor; Wu, Qi

    2016-01-01

    Currently available inducible Cre/loxP systems, despite their considerable utility in gene manipulation, have pitfalls in certain scenarios, such as unsatisfactory recombination rates and deleterious effects on physiology and behavior. To overcome these limitations, we designed a new, inducible gene-targeting system by introducing an in-frame nonsense mutation into the coding sequence of Cre recombinase (nsCre). Mutant mRNAs transcribed from nsCre transgene can be efficiently translated into full-length, functional Cre recombinase in the presence of nonsense suppressors such as aminoglycosides. In a proof-of-concept model, GABA signaling from hypothalamic neurons expressing agouti-related peptide (AgRP) was genetically inactivated within 4 d after treatment with a synthetic aminoglycoside. Disruption of GABA synthesis in AgRP neurons in young adult mice led to a dramatic loss of body weight due to reduced food intake and elevated energy expenditure; they also manifested glucose intolerance. In contrast, older mice with genetic inactivation of GABA signaling by AgRP neurons had only transient reduction of feeding and body weight; their energy expenditure and glucose tolerance were unaffected. These results indicate that GABAergic signaling from AgRP neurons plays a key role in the control of feeding and metabolism through an age-dependent mechanism. This new genetic technique will augment current tools used to elucidate mechanisms underlying many physiological and neurological processes. PMID:26976589

  18. Melanocortin 4 receptor constitutive activity inhibits L-type voltage-gated calcium channels in neurons.

    PubMed

    Agosti, F; Cordisco Gonzalez, S; Martinez Damonte, V; Tolosa, M J; Di Siervi, N; Schioth, H B; Davio, C; Perello, M; Raingo, J

    2017-03-27

    The melanocortin 4 receptor (MC4R) is a G protein-coupled receptor (GPCR) that is expressed in several brain nuclei playing a crucial role in the regulation of energy balance controlling the homeostasis of the organism. It displays both agonist-evoked and constitutive activity, and moreover, it can couple to different G proteins. Most of the research on MC4R has been focused on agonist-induced activity, while the molecular and cellular basis of MC4R constitutive activity remains scarcely studied. We have previously shown that neuronal N-type voltage-gated calcium channels (CaV2.2) are inhibited by MC4R agonist-dependent activation, while the CaV subtypes that carry L- and P/Q-type current are not. Here, we tested the hypothesis that MC4R constitutive activity can affect CaV, with focus on the channel subtypes that can control transcriptional activity coupled to depolarization (L-type, CaV1.2/1.3) and neurotransmitter release (N- and P/Q-type, CaV2.2 and CaV2.1). We found that MC4R constitutive activity inhibits specifically CaV1.2/1.3 and CaV2.1 subtypes of CaV. We also explored the signaling pathways mediating this inhibition, and thus propose that agonist-dependent and basal MC4R activation modes signal differentially through Gs and Gi/o pathways to impact on different CaV subtypes. In addition, we found that chronic incubation with MC4R endogenous inverse agonist, agouti and agouti-related peptide (AgRP), occludes CaV inhibition in a cell line and in amygdaloid complex cultured neurons as well. Thus, we define new mechanisms of control of the main mediators of depolarization-induced calcium entry into neurons by a GPCR that displays constitutive activity.

  19. Layer and broiler chicks exhibit similar hypothalamic expression of orexigenic neuropeptides but distinct expression of genes related to energy homeostasis and obesity.

    PubMed

    Yuan, Lixia; Ni, Yingdong; Barth, Stephan; Wang, Yufeng; Grossmann, Roland; Zhao, Ruqian

    2009-06-01

    Layer and broiler chickens demonstrate striking differences in body weight and body composition. However, the mechanism underlying such difference is elusive. Hypothalamus-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis regulates energy homeostasis and body size in mammals, but information in birds is scarce. Here we test the hypothesis that such breed difference is more associated with hypothalamic expression of genes related to HPA axis, rather than orexigenic neuropeptides. Broiler chicks exhibit significantly higher body weight and food intake at day (D) 7 posthatching, but the food intake relative to body weight gain was actually lower. No breed differences were observed for hypothalamic expression of neuropeptide Y (NPY), agouti-related protein (AGRP), proopiomelanocortin (POMC), orexin (ORX), leptin receptor (LEPR), acetyl-CoA carboxylase (ACC) or fatty acid synthase (FAS). However, broiler chicks expressed significantly higher glucocorticoid receptor (GR) mRNA (P<0.05) and protein (P<0.01) in hypothalamus compared to layer chicks, which is associated with lower corticotropin-releasing hormone (CRH) mRNA (P<0.05) yet higher accumulation of CRH peptide in hypothalamus, suggesting an augmented GR-mediated negative feedback regulation of CRH transcription and release in broiler chicks. Furthermore, fat mass and obesity associated (FTO) gene was also more highly expressed in hypothalamus of broiler chicks (P<0.05). These results suggest that the genes related to energy homeostasis and obesity, such as GR, CRH and FTO, rather than orexigenic neuropeptides, are impacted by the genetic selection practices and play a role in breed-specific body weight setpoint regulation in the chicken.

  20. Central melanocortins regulate the motivation for sucrose reward.

    PubMed

    Pandit, Rahul; van der Zwaal, Esther M; Luijendijk, Mieneke C M; Brans, Maike A D; van Rozen, Andrea J; Oude Ophuis, Ralph J A; Vanderschuren, Louk J M J; Adan, Roger A H; la Fleur, Susanne E

    2015-01-01

    The role of the melanocortin (MC) system in feeding behavior is well established. Food intake is potently suppressed by central infusion of the MC 3/4 receptor agonist α-melanocyte stimulating hormone (α-MSH), whereas the MC 3/4 receptor inverse-agonist Agouti Related Peptide (AGRP) has the opposite effect. MC receptors are widely expressed in both hypothalamic and extra-hypothalamic brain regions, including nuclei involved in food reward and motivation, such as the nucleus accumbens (NAc) and the ventral tegmental area. This suggests that MCs modulate motivational aspects of food intake. To test this hypothesis, rats were injected intracerebroventricularly with α-MSH or AGRP and their motivation for sucrose was tested under a progressive ratio schedule of reinforcement. Food motivated behavior was dose-dependently decreased by α-MSH. Conversely, AGRP increased responding for sucrose, an effect that was blocked by pretreatment with the dopamine receptor antagonist α-flupenthixol. In contrast to progressive ratio responding, free intake of sucrose remained unaltered upon α-MSH or AGRP infusion. In addition, we investigated whether the effects of α-MSH and AGRP on food motivation were mediated by the NAc shell. In situ hybridization of MC3 and MC4 receptor expression confirmed that the MC4 receptor was expressed throughout the NAc, and injection of α-MSH and AGRP into the NAc shell caused a decrease and an increase in motivation for sucrose, respectively. These data show that the motivation for palatable food is modulated by MC4 receptors in the NAc shell, and demonstrate cross-talk between the MC and dopamine system in the modulation of food motivation.

  1. Peptides and food intake.

    PubMed

    Sobrino Crespo, Carmen; Perianes Cachero, Aránzazu; Puebla Jiménez, Lilian; Barrios, Vicente; Arilla Ferreiro, Eduardo

    2014-01-01

    The mechanisms for controlling food intake involve mainly an interplay between gut, brain, and adipose tissue (AT), among the major organs. Parasympathetic, sympathetic, and other systems are required for communication between the brain satiety center, gut, and AT. These neuronal circuits include a variety of peptides and hormones, being ghrelin the only orexigenic molecule known, whereas the plethora of other factors are inhibitors of appetite, suggesting its physiological relevance in the regulation of food intake and energy homeostasis. Nutrients generated by food digestion have been proposed to activate G-protein-coupled receptors on the luminal side of enteroendocrine cells, e.g., the L-cells. This stimulates the release of gut hormones into the circulation such as glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1), oxyntomodulin, pancreatic polypeptides, peptide tyrosine tyrosine, and cholecystokinin, which inhibit appetite. Ghrelin is a peptide secreted from the stomach and, in contrast to other gut hormones, plasma levels decrease after a meal and potently stimulate food intake. Other circulating factors such as insulin and leptin relay information regarding long-term energy stores. Both hormones circulate at proportional levels to body fat content, enter the CNS proportionally to their plasma levels, and reduce food intake. Circulating hormones can influence the activity of the arcuate nucleus (ARC) neurons of the hypothalamus, after passing across the median eminence. Circulating factors such as gut hormones may also influence the nucleus of the tractus solitarius (NTS) through the adjacent circumventricular organ. On the other hand, gastrointestinal vagal afferents converge in the NTS of the brainstem. Neural projections from the NTS, in turn, carry signals to the hypothalamus. The ARC acts as an integrative center, with two major subpopulations of neurons influencing appetite, one of them coexpressing neuropeptide Y and agouti-related protein (AgRP) that increases food

  2. Peptides and Food Intake

    PubMed Central

    Sobrino Crespo, Carmen; Perianes Cachero, Aránzazu; Puebla Jiménez, Lilian; Barrios, Vicente; Arilla Ferreiro, Eduardo

    2014-01-01

    The mechanisms for controlling food intake involve mainly an interplay between gut, brain, and adipose tissue (AT), among the major organs. Parasympathetic, sympathetic, and other systems are required for communication between the brain satiety center, gut, and AT. These neuronal circuits include a variety of peptides and hormones, being ghrelin the only orexigenic molecule known, whereas the plethora of other factors are inhibitors of appetite, suggesting its physiological relevance in the regulation of food intake and energy homeostasis. Nutrients generated by food digestion have been proposed to activate G-protein-coupled receptors on the luminal side of enteroendocrine cells, e.g., the L-cells. This stimulates the release of gut hormones into the circulation such as glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1), oxyntomodulin, pancreatic polypeptides, peptide tyrosine tyrosine, and cholecystokinin, which inhibit appetite. Ghrelin is a peptide secreted from the stomach and, in contrast to other gut hormones, plasma levels decrease after a meal and potently stimulate food intake. Other circulating factors such as insulin and leptin relay information regarding long-term energy stores. Both hormones circulate at proportional levels to body fat content, enter the CNS proportionally to their plasma levels, and reduce food intake. Circulating hormones can influence the activity of the arcuate nucleus (ARC) neurons of the hypothalamus, after passing across the median eminence. Circulating factors such as gut hormones may also influence the nucleus of the tractus solitarius (NTS) through the adjacent circumventricular organ. On the other hand, gastrointestinal vagal afferents converge in the NTS of the brainstem. Neural projections from the NTS, in turn, carry signals to the hypothalamus. The ARC acts as an integrative center, with two major subpopulations of neurons influencing appetite, one of them coexpressing neuropeptide Y and agouti-related protein (AgRP) that increases food

  3. Arcuate nucleus destruction does not block food deprivation-induced increases in food foraging and hoarding

    PubMed Central

    Dailey, Megan J.; Bartness, Timothy J.

    2010-01-01

    The mechanisms underlying the control of food intake are considerably better understood than those underlying the appetitive ingestive behaviors of foraging and hoarding of food, despite the prevalence of the latter across species including humans. Neuropeptide Y (NPY) and agouti-related protein (AgRP), two orexigenic neuropeptides known to stimulate food intake in a variety of species, applied centrally to Siberian hamsters increases foraging and especially hoarding with lesser increases in food intake. Both are expressed in the arcuate nucleus (Arc) and their synthesis increases with food deprivation, a naturally-occurring stimulus that markedly increases foraging and hoarding in Siberian hamsters. Therefore, we tested whether destruction of Arc neurons blocks these ingestive behaviors. This was accomplished either by microinjecting NPY conjugated to saporin (NPY-SAP) bilaterally into the Arc to kill NPY receptor-bearing neurons or via neonatal monosodium glutamate (MSG) treatment. For both methods, Arc cresyl violet staining (cell density) and NPY and Y1 receptor immunoreactivity (ir) were significantly decreased. Although baseline foraging and food hoarding were not affected, food deprivation-induced increased food hoarding was surprisingly exaggerated ∼100 % with both types of Arc destruction. We found a substantial amount of remaining NPY-ir fibers, likely emanating from the brainstem, and a significant upregulation of Y1 receptors in Arc NPY projections areas (hypothalamic paraventricular nucleus and perifornical area) after Arc denervation and their activation may have accounted for the exaggerated increases. The converging evidence from both Arc destruction methods suggests an intact Arc is not necessary for food deprivation-induced increases in food foraging and hoarding. PMID:20138163

  4. Regulation of hypothalamic neuropeptides gene expression in diet induced obesity resistant rats: possible targets for obesity prediction?

    PubMed

    Cifani, Carlo; Micioni Di Bonaventura, Maria V; Pucci, Mariangela; Giusepponi, Maria E; Romano, Adele; Di Francesco, Andrea; Maccarrone, Mauro; D'Addario, Claudio

    2015-01-01

    Several factors play a role in obesity (i.e., behavior, environment, and genetics) and epigenetic regulation of gene expression has emerged as a potential contributor in the susceptibility and development of obesity. To investigate the individual sensitivity to weight gain/resistance, we here studied gene transcription regulation of several hypothalamic neuropeptides involved in the control of energy balance in rats developing obesity (diet-induced obesity, DIO) or not (diet resistant, DR), when fed with a high fat diet. Rats have been followed up to 21 weeks of high fat diet exposure. After 5 weeks high fat diet exposure, the obese phenotype was developed and we observed a selective down-regulation of the orexigenic neuropeptide Y (NPY) and peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor gamma (PPAR-γ) genes. No changes were observed in the expression of the agouti-related protein (AgRP), as well as for all the anorexigenic genes under study. After long-term high fat diet exposure (21 weeks), NPY and PPAR-γ, as well as most of the genes under study, resulted not be different between DIO and DR, whereas a lower expression of the anorexigenic pro-opio-melanocortin (POMC) gene was observed in DIO rats when compared to DR rats. Moreover we observed that changes in NPY and POMC mRNA were inversely correlated with gene promoters DNA methylation. Our findings suggest that selective alterations in hypothalamic peptide genes regulation could contribute to the development of overweight in rats and that environmental factor, as in this animal model, might be partially responsible of these changes via epigenetic mechanism.

  5. Melanocortin Receptor 4 Deficiency Affects Body Weight Regulation, Grooming Behavior, and Substrate Preference in the Rat

    PubMed Central

    Mul, Joram D.; van Boxtel, Ruben; Bergen, Dylan J.M.; Brans, Maike A.D.; Brakkee, Jan H.; Toonen, Pim W.; Garner, Keith M.; Adan, Roger A.H.; Cuppen, Edwin

    2012-01-01

    Obesity is caused by an imbalance between energy intake and expenditure and has become a major health-care problem in western society. The central melanocortin system plays a crucial role in the regulation of feeding and energy expenditure, and functional loss of melanocortin receptor 4 (MC4R) is the most common genetic cause of human obesity. In this study, we present the first functional Mc4r knockout model in the rat, resulting from an N-ethyl-N-nitrosourea mutagenesis–induced point mutation. In vitro observations revealed impaired membrane-binding and subsequent nonfunctionality of the receptor, whereas in vivo observations showed that functional loss of MC4R increased body weight, food intake, white adipose mass, and changed substrate preference. In addition, intracerebroventricular (ICV) administration of Agouti-Related Protein79–129 (AgRP79–129), an MC4R inverse agonist, or Melanotan-II (MTII), an MC4R agonist, did affect feeding behavior in wild-type rats but not in homozygous mutant rats, confirming complete loss of MC4R function in vivo. Finally, ICV administration of MTII induced excessive grooming behavior in wild-type rats, whereas this effect was absent in homozygous mutant rats, indicating that MTII-induced grooming behavior is exclusively regulated via MC4R pathways. Taken together, we expect that the MC4R rat model described here will be a valuable tool for studying monogenic obesity in humans. More specifically, the relative big size and increased cognitive capacity of rats as compared to mice will facilitate complex behavioral studies and detailed mechanistic studies regarding central function of MC4R, both of which ultimately may help to further understand the specific mechanisms that induce obesity during loss of MC4R function. PMID:21527895

  6. Melanocortin receptor 4 deficiency affects body weight regulation, grooming behavior, and substrate preference in the rat.

    PubMed

    Mul, Joram D; van Boxtel, Ruben; Bergen, Dylan J M; Brans, Maike A D; Brakkee, Jan H; Toonen, Pim W; Garner, Keith M; Adan, Roger A H; Cuppen, Edwin

    2012-03-01

    Obesity is caused by an imbalance between energy intake and expenditure and has become a major health-care problem in western society. The central melanocortin system plays a crucial role in the regulation of feeding and energy expenditure, and functional loss of melanocortin receptor 4 (MC4R) is the most common genetic cause of human obesity. In this study, we present the first functional Mc4r knockout model in the rat, resulting from an N-ethyl-N-nitrosourea mutagenesis-induced point mutation. In vitro observations revealed impaired membrane-binding and subsequent nonfunctionality of the receptor, whereas in vivo observations showed that functional loss of MC4R increased body weight, food intake, white adipose mass, and changed substrate preference. In addition, intracerebroventricular (ICV) administration of Agouti-Related Protein(79-129) (AgRP(79-129)), an MC4R inverse agonist, or Melanotan-II (MTII), an MC4R agonist, did affect feeding behavior in wild-type rats but not in homozygous mutant rats, confirming complete loss of MC4R function in vivo. Finally, ICV administration of MTII induced excessive grooming behavior in wild-type rats, whereas this effect was absent in homozygous mutant rats, indicating that MTII-induced grooming behavior is exclusively regulated via MC4R pathways. Taken together, we expect that the MC4R rat model described here will be a valuable tool for studying monogenic obesity in humans. More specifically, the relative big size and increased cognitive capacity of rats as compared to mice will facilitate complex behavioral studies and detailed mechanistic studies regarding central function of MC4R, both of which ultimately may help to further understand the specific mechanisms that induce obesity during loss of MC4R function.

  7. Neuroendocrine regulation of appetitive ingestive behavior

    PubMed Central

    Keen-Rhinehart, Erin; Ondek, Katelynn; Schneider, Jill E.

    2013-01-01

    Food availability in nature is often irregular, and famine is commonplace. Increased motivation to engage in ingestive behaviors increases the chance of survival, providing additional potential opportunities for reproduction. Because of the advantages conferred by entraining ingestive behavior to environmental conditions, neuroendocrine mechanisms regulating the motivation to acquire and ingest food have evolved to be responsive to exogenous (i.e., food stored for future consumption) and endogenous (i.e., body fat stores) fuel availability. Motivated behaviors like eating occur in two phases. The appetitive phase brings animals into contact with food (e.g., foraging, food hoarding), and the more reflexive consummatory phase results in ingestion (e.g., chewing, swallowing). Quantifiable appetitive behaviors are part of the natural ingestive behavioral repertoire of species such as hamsters and humans. This review summarizes current knowledge about neuroendocrine regulators of ingestive behavior, with an emphasis appetitive behavior. We will discuss hormonal regulators of appetitive ingestive behaviors, including the orexigenic hormone ghrelin, which potently stimulates foraging and food hoarding in Siberian hamsters. This section includes a discussion of the hormone leptin, its relation to endogenous fat stores, and its role in food deprivation-induced increases in appetitive ingestive behaviors. Next, we discuss how hormonal regulators interact with neurotransmitters involved in the regulation of ingestive behaviors, such as neuropeptide Y (NPY), agouti-related protein (AgRP) and α-melanocyte stimulating hormone (α-MSH), to regulate ingestive behavior. Finally, we discuss the potential impact that perinatal nutrient availability can have on the neuroendocrine regulation of ingestive behavior. Understanding the hormonal mechanisms that connect metabolic fuel availability to central appetite regulatory circuits should provide a better understanding of the

  8. Neuroendocrine regulation of appetitive ingestive behavior.

    PubMed

    Keen-Rhinehart, Erin; Ondek, Katelynn; Schneider, Jill E

    2013-11-15

    Food availability in nature is often irregular, and famine is commonplace. Increased motivation to engage in ingestive behaviors increases the chance of survival, providing additional potential opportunities for reproduction. Because of the advantages conferred by entraining ingestive behavior to environmental conditions, neuroendocrine mechanisms regulating the motivation to acquire and ingest food have evolved to be responsive to exogenous (i.e., food stored for future consumption) and endogenous (i.e., body fat stores) fuel availability. Motivated behaviors like eating occur in two phases. The appetitive phase brings animals into contact with food (e.g., foraging, food hoarding), and the more reflexive consummatory phase results in ingestion (e.g., chewing, swallowing). Quantifiable appetitive behaviors are part of the natural ingestive behavioral repertoire of species such as hamsters and humans. This review summarizes current knowledge about neuroendocrine regulators of ingestive behavior, with an emphasis appetitive behavior. We will discuss hormonal regulators of appetitive ingestive behaviors, including the orexigenic hormone ghrelin, which potently stimulates foraging and food hoarding in Siberian hamsters. This section includes a discussion of the hormone leptin, its relation to endogenous fat stores, and its role in food deprivation-induced increases in appetitive ingestive behaviors. Next, we discuss how hormonal regulators interact with neurotransmitters involved in the regulation of ingestive behaviors, such as neuropeptide Y (NPY), agouti-related protein (AgRP) and α-melanocyte stimulating hormone (α-MSH), to regulate ingestive behavior. Finally, we discuss the potential impact that perinatal nutrient availability can have on the neuroendocrine regulation of ingestive behavior. Understanding the hormonal mechanisms that connect metabolic fuel availability to central appetite regulatory circuits should provide a better understanding of the

  9. Arcuate nucleus destruction does not block food deprivation-induced increases in food foraging and hoarding.

    PubMed

    Dailey, Megan J; Bartness, Timothy J

    2010-04-06

    The mechanisms underlying the control of food intake are considerably better understood than those underlying the appetitive ingestive behaviors of foraging and hoarding of food, despite the prevalence of the latter across species including humans. Neuropeptide Y (NPY) and Agouti-related protein (AgRP), two orexigenic neuropeptides known to stimulate food intake in a variety of species, applied centrally to Siberian hamsters increases foraging and especially hoarding with lesser increases in food intake. Both are expressed in the arcuate nucleus (Arc) and their synthesis increases with food deprivation, a naturally-occurring stimulus that markedly increases foraging and hoarding in Siberian hamsters. Therefore, we tested whether destruction of Arc neurons blocks these ingestive behaviors. This was accomplished either by microinjecting NPY conjugated to saporin (NPY-SAP) bilaterally into the Arc to kill NPY receptor-bearing neurons or via neonatal monosodium glutamate (MSG) treatment. For both methods, Arc cresyl violet staining (cell density) and NPY and Y1 receptor-immunoreactivity (ir) were significantly decreased. Although baseline foraging and food hoarding were not affected, food deprivation-induced increased food hoarding was surprisingly exaggerated approximately 100% with both types of Arc destruction. We found a substantial amount of remaining NPY-ir fibers, likely emanating from the brainstem, and a significant up-regulation of Y1 receptors in Arc NPY projections areas (hypothalamic paraventricular nucleus and perifornical area) after Arc denervation and their activation may have accounted for the exaggerated increases. The converging evidence from both Arc destruction methods suggests an intact Arc is not necessary for food deprivation-induced increases in food foraging and hoarding.

  10. The link between stress and feeding behaviour.

    PubMed

    Maniam, Jayanthi; Morris, Margaret J

    2012-07-01

    Exposure to stress is inevitable, and it may occur, to varying degrees, at different phases throughout the lifespan. The impact of stress experienced in later life has been well documented as many populations in modern society experience increasing socio-economic demands. The effects of stress early in life are less well known, partly as the impact of an early exposure may be difficult to quantify, however emerging evidence shows it can impact later in life. One of the major impacts of stress besides changes in psychosocial behaviour is altered feeding responses. The system that regulates stress responses, the hypothalamo-pituitary-adrenal axis, also regulates feeding responses because the neural circuits that regulate food intake converge on the paraventricular nucleus, which contains corticotrophin releasing hormone (CRH), and urocortin containing neurons. In other words the systems that control food intake and stress responses share the same anatomy and thus each system can influence each other in eliciting a response. Stress is known to alter feeding responses in a bidirectional pattern, with both increases and decreases in intake observed. Stress-induced bidirectional feeding responses underline the complex mechanisms and multiple contributing factors, including the levels of glucocorticoids (dependent on the severity of a stressor), the interaction between glucocorticoids and feeding related neuropeptides such as neuropeptide Y (NPY), alpha-melanocyte stimulating hormone (α-MSH), agouti-related protein (AgRP), melanocortins and their receptors, CRH, urocortin and peripheral signals (leptin, insulin and ghrelin). This review discusses the neuropeptides that regulate feeding behaviour and how their function can be altered through cross-talk with hormones and neuropeptides that also regulate the hypothalamo-pituitary-adrenal axis. In addition, long-term stress induced alterations in feeding behaviour, and changes in gene expression of neuropeptides regulating

  11. Interleukin-6 regulates the expression of hypothalamic neuropeptides involved in body weight in a gender-dependent way.

    PubMed

    Señarís, R M; Trujillo, M L; Navia, B; Comes, G; Ferrer, B; Giralt, M; Hidalgo, J

    2011-08-01

    Interleukin (IL)-6 has been involved in the control of body weight and body fat. Nevertheless, the mechanisms underlying these effects are not completely understood because central and peripheral actions of IL-6 are plausible. To gain further insight into the central effects of IL-6, we used transgenic mice expressing the IL-6 gene under the control of the glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP) promoter (GFAP-IL-6 mice), therefore with central nervous system-restricted over-expression of IL-6, and we studied the expression of the main neuropeptides responsible for energy homeostasis in specific hypothalamic nuclei. Neuropeptide Y (NPY), agouti-related peptide (AgRP), melanin-concentrating hormone (MCH), prepro-orexin (preproOX) (orexigenic and anabolic neuropeptides), pro-opiomelanocortin (POMC) and corticotrophin-releasing hormone (CRH) (anorexigenic and catabolic peptides) mRNA levels were determined using in situ hybridisation in young (2-4 month-old) and old (10-12 month-old) female and male mice under different feeding conditions: normal diet (control) and high-fat diet (HFD), and 24 h-food deprivation. In GFAP-IL-6 females fed a control diet (GFAP-IL-6-control), we showed a significant decrease in NPY and AgRP mRNA levels at all ages, and a late increase in POMC expression (only significant in older animals). These differences were blunted in HFD mice. By contrast, GFAP-IL-6-control males showed a decrease in CRH mRNA content at early ages (2-4 months), and an increase in older mice (10-12 months). Interestingly, these differences were again blunted in HFD mice. Finally, central IL-6 was not able to counteract the effects of 24 h of fasting on body weight, plasma glucose levels and the mRNA content of the peptides evaluated in the present study. Our results demonstrate that IL-6 may regulate the expression of hypothalamic neuropeptides involved in the control of body weight and body fat acting at the central level in a gender- and age-dependent way.

  12. Brain-derived neurotrophic factor is required for axonal growth of selective groups of neurons in the arcuate nucleus

    PubMed Central

    Liao, Guey-Ying; Bouyer, Karine; Kamitakahara, Anna; Sahibzada, Niaz; Wang, Chien-Hua; Rutlin, Michael; Simerly, Richard B.; Xu, Baoji

    2015-01-01

    Objective Brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) is a potent regulator of neuronal development, and the Bdnf gene produces two populations of transcripts with either a short or long 3′ untranslated region (3′ UTR). Deficiencies in BDNF signaling have been shown to cause severe obesity in humans; however, it remains unknown how BDNF signaling impacts the organization of neuronal circuits that control energy balance. Methods We examined the role of BDNF on survival, axonal projections, and synaptic inputs of neurons in the arcuate nucleus (ARH), a structure critical for the control of energy balance, using Bdnfklox/klox mice, which lack long 3′ UTR Bdnf mRNA and develop severe hyperphagic obesity. Results We found that a small fraction of neurons that express the receptor for BDNF, TrkB, also expressed proopiomelanocortin (POMC) or neuropeptide Y (NPY)/agouti-related protein (AgRP) in the ARH. Bdnfklox/klox mice had normal numbers of POMC, NPY, and TrkB neurons in the ARH; however, retrograde labeling revealed a drastic reduction in the number of ARH axons that project to the paraventricular hypothalamus (PVH) in these mice. In addition, fewer POMC and AgRP axons were found in the dorsomedial hypothalamic nucleus (DMH) and the lateral part of PVH, respectively, in Bdnfklox/klox mice. Using immunohistochemistry, we examined the impact of BDNF deficiency on inputs to ARH neurons. We found that excitatory inputs onto POMC and NPY neurons were increased and decreased, respectively, in Bdnfklox/klox mice, likely due to a compensatory response to marked hyperphagia displayed by the mutant mice. Conclusion This study shows that the majority of TrkB neurons in the ARH are distinct from known neuronal populations and that BDNF plays a critical role in directing projections from these neurons to the DMH and PVH. We propose that hyperphagic obesity due to BDNF deficiency is in part attributable to impaired axonal growth of TrkB-expressing ARH neurons. PMID:26042201

  13. Blockage of the Neonatal Leptin Surge Affects the Gene Expression of Growth Factors, Glial Proteins, and Neuropeptides Involved in the Control of Metabolism and Reproduction in Peripubertal Male and Female Rats.

    PubMed

    Mela, Virginia; Díaz, Francisca; Lopez-Rodriguez, Ana Belen; Vázquez, María Jesús; Gertler, Arieh; Argente, Jesús; Tena-Sempere, Manuel; Viveros, María-Paz; Chowen, Julie A

    2015-07-01

    Leptin (Lep) is important in the development of neuroendocrine circuits involved in metabolic control. Because both Lep and metabolism influence pubertal development, we hypothesized that early changes in Lep signaling could also modulate hypothalamic (HT) systems involved in reproduction. We previously demonstrated that a single injection of a Lep antagonist (Antag) on postnatal day (PND)9, coincident with the neonatal Lep peak, induced sexually dimorphic modifications in trophic factors and markers of cell turnover and neuronal maturation in the HT on PND13. Here, our aim was to investigate whether the alterations induced by Lep antagonism persist into puberty. Accordingly, male and female rats were treated with a pegylated super Lep Antag from PND5 to PND9 and killed just before the normal appearance of external signs of puberty (PND33 in females and PND43 in males). There was no effect on body weight, but in males food intake increased, subcutaneous adipose tissue decreased and HT neuropeptide Y and Agouti-related peptide mRNA levels were reduced, with no effect in females. In both sexes, the Antag increased HT mRNA levels of the kisspeptin receptor, G protein-coupled recepter 54 (Gpr54). Expression of the Lep receptor, trophic factors, and glial markers were differently affected in the HT of peripubertal males and females. Lep production in adipose tissue was decreased in Antag-treated rats of both sexes, with production of other cytokines being differentially regulated between sexes. In conclusion, in addition to the long-term effects on metabolism, changes in neonatal Lep levels modifies factors involved in reproduction that could possibly affect sexual maturation.

  14. C1q/TNF-related Protein 4 (CTRP4) Is a Unique Secreted Protein with Two Tandem C1q Domains That Functions in the Hypothalamus to Modulate Food Intake and Body Weight*

    PubMed Central

    Byerly, Mardi S.; Petersen, Pia S.; Ramamurthy, Santosh; Seldin, Marcus M.; Lei, Xia; Provost, Elayne; Wei, Zhikui; Ronnett, Gabriele V.; Wong, G. William

    2014-01-01

    CTRP4 is a unique member of the C1q family, possessing two tandem globular C1q domains. Its physiological function is poorly defined. Here, we show that CTRP4 is an evolutionarily conserved, ∼34-kDa secretory protein expressed in the brain. In human, mouse, and zebrafish brain, CTRP4 expression begins early in development and is widespread in the central nervous system. Neurons, but not astrocytes, express and secrete CTRP4, and secreted proteins form higher-order oligomeric complexes. CTRP4 is also produced by peripheral tissues and circulates in blood. Its serum levels are increased in leptin-deficient obese (ob/ob) mice. Functional studies suggest that CTRP4 acts centrally to modulate energy metabolism. Refeeding following an overnight fast induced the expression of CTRP4 in the hypothalamus. Central administration of recombinant protein suppressed food intake and altered the whole-body energy balance in both chow-fed and high-fat diet-fed mice. Suppression of food intake by CTRP4 is correlated with a decreased expression of orexigenic neuropeptide (Npy and Agrp) genes in the hypothalamus. These results establish CTRP4 as a novel nutrient-responsive central regulator of food intake and energy balance. PMID:24366864

  15. Plasticity of the Melanocortin System: Determinants and Possible Consequences on Food Intake.

    PubMed

    Nuzzaci, Danaé; Laderrière, Amélie; Lemoine, Aleth; Nédélec, Emmanuelle; Pénicaud, Luc; Rigault, Caroline; Benani, Alexandre

    2015-01-01

    The melanocortin system is one of the most important neuronal pathways involved in the regulation of food intake and is probably the best characterized. Agouti-related peptide (AgRP) and proopiomelanocortin (POMC) expressing neurons located in the arcuate nucleus of the hypothalamus are the key elements of this system. These two neuronal populations are sensitive to circulating molecules and receive many excitatory and inhibitory inputs from various brain areas. According to sensory and metabolic information they integrate, these neurons control different aspects of feeding behavior and orchestrate autonomic responses aimed at maintaining energy homeostasis. Interestingly, composition and abundance of pre-synaptic inputs onto arcuate AgRP and POMC neurons vary in the adult hypothalamus in response to changes in the metabolic state, a phenomenon that can be recapitulated by treatment with hormones, such as leptin or ghrelin. As described in other neuroendrocrine systems, glia might be determinant to shift the synaptic configuration of AgRP and POMC neurons. Here, we discuss the physiological outcome of the synaptic plasticity of the melanocortin system, and more particularly its contribution to the control of energy balance. The discovery of this attribute has changed how we view obesity and related disorders, and opens new perspectives for their management.

  16. Plasticity of the Melanocortin System: Determinants and Possible Consequences on Food Intake

    PubMed Central

    Nuzzaci, Danaé; Laderrière, Amélie; Lemoine, Aleth; Nédélec, Emmanuelle; Pénicaud, Luc; Rigault, Caroline; Benani, Alexandre

    2015-01-01

    The melanocortin system is one of the most important neuronal pathways involved in the regulation of food intake and is probably the best characterized. Agouti-related peptide (AgRP) and proopiomelanocortin (POMC) expressing neurons located in the arcuate nucleus of the hypothalamus are the key elements of this system. These two neuronal populations are sensitive to circulating molecules and receive many excitatory and inhibitory inputs from various brain areas. According to sensory and metabolic information they integrate, these neurons control different aspects of feeding behavior and orchestrate autonomic responses aimed at maintaining energy homeostasis. Interestingly, composition and abundance of pre-synaptic inputs onto arcuate AgRP and POMC neurons vary in the adult hypothalamus in response to changes in the metabolic state, a phenomenon that can be recapitulated by treatment with hormones, such as leptin or ghrelin. As described in other neuroendrocrine systems, glia might be determinant to shift the synaptic configuration of AgRP and POMC neurons. Here, we discuss the physiological outcome of the synaptic plasticity of the melanocortin system, and more particularly its contribution to the control of energy balance. The discovery of this attribute has changed how we view obesity and related disorders, and opens new perspectives for their management. PMID:26441833

  17. Supplementation of branched-chain amino acids to a reduced-protein diet improves growth performance in piglets: involvement of increased feed intake and direct muscle growth-promoting effect.

    PubMed

    Zheng, Liufeng; Wei, Hongkui; Cheng, Chuanshang; Xiang, Quanhang; Pang, Jiaman; Peng, Jian

    2016-06-01

    The aim of this study was to investigate whether supplementing branched-chain amino acids (AA) (BCAA) along with a reduced-protein diet increases piglet growth, and whether elevated feed intake and muscle growth-promoting effect contribute to this improvement. In Expt 1, twenty-eight weanling piglets were randomly fed one of the following four diets: a positive control (PC) diet, a reduced-protein negative control (NC) diet, an NC diet supplemented with BCAA to the same levels as in the PC diet (test 1 (T1)) and an NC diet supplemented with a 2-fold dose of BCAA in T1 diet (test 2 (T2)) for 28 d. In Expt 2, twenty-one weanling piglets were randomly assigned to NC, T1 and pair-fed T1 (P) groups. NC and T1 diets were the same as in Expt 1, whereas piglets in the P group were individually pair-fed with the NC group. In Expt 1, the NC group had reduced piglet growth and feed intake compared with the PC group, which were restored in T1 and T2 groups, but no differences were detected between T1 and T2 groups. In Expt 2, T1 and P groups showed increases in growth and mass of some muscles compared with the NC group. Increased feed intake after BCAA supplementation was associated with increased mRNA expressions of agouti-related peptide and co-express neuropeptide Y (NPY) and phosphorylation of mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR) and ribosomal protein S6 kinase 1 (S6K1), as well as decreased mRNA expressions of melanocortin-4 receptor and cocaine- and amphetamine-regulated transcript and phosphorylation of eukaryotic initiation factor 2α in the hypothalamus. No differences were observed among PC, T1 and T2 groups except for higher NPY mRNA expression in the T2 group than in the PC group (Expt 1). Phosphorylation of mTOR and S6K1 in muscle was enhanced after BCAA supplementation, which was independent of change in feed intake (Expt 2). In conclusion, supplementing BCAA to reduced-protein diets increases feed intake and muscle mass, and contributes to better growth

  18. [A little-known new components of the appetite control].

    PubMed

    Nylec, Marcin; Olszanecka-Glinianowicz, Magdalena

    2010-06-11

    Appetite control is a complex process regulated by both neurotransmitters, such as: appetite- increasing neuropeptide Y (NPY), Agouti related peptide (AgRP), orexins A and B, as well as appetite-suppressing propiomelanocortin (POMC) and a peptide (CART) which transcription is regulated by cocaine and amphetamine. In addition, other factors are involved such as hormones of the alimentary tract (appetite-stimulating ghrelin and appetite-decreasing cholecystokinin, peptide YY, glucagon like peptide-1, oxyntomodulin, pancreatic peptide, enterostatin and amylin). In this process participates also leptin, an appetite-suppressing hormone produced by adipocytes. The authors focus on other, little-known neurotransmitters involved in the control of appetite: RFamide Peptide (QRFP43) and VGF-Derived Peptide, TLQP-21, as well as xenin, another hunger-decreasing hormone of the alimentary tract.

  19. Network of hypothalamic neurons that control appetite.

    PubMed

    Sohn, Jong-Woo

    2015-04-01

    The central nervous system (CNS) controls food intake and energy expenditure via tight coordinations between multiple neuronal populations. Specifically, two distinct neuronal populations exist in the arcuate nucleus of hypothalamus (ARH): the anorexigenic (appetite-suppressing) pro-opiomelanocortin (POMC) neurons and the orexigenic (appetite-increasing) neuropeptide Y (NPY)/agouti-related peptide (AgRP) neurons. The coordinated regulation of neuronal circuit involving these neurons is essential in properly maintaining energy balance, and any disturbance therein may result in hyperphagia/obesity or hypophagia/starvation. Thus, adequate knowledge of the POMC and NPY/AgRP neuron physiology is mandatory to understand the pathophysiology of obesity and related metabolic diseases. This review will discuss the history and recent updates on the POMC and NPY/AgRP neuronal circuits, as well as the general anorexigenic and orexigenic circuits in the CNS.

  20. Effects of nutritional status and gonadal steroids on expression of appetite-regulatory genes in the hypothalamic arcuate nucleus of sheep.

    PubMed

    Archer, Z A; Findlay, P A; McMillen, S R; Rhind, S M; Adam, C L

    2004-09-01

    Sheep exhibit photoperiod-driven seasonal changes in appetite and body weight so that nutritional status increases in long days (LD) and decreases in short days (SD); additionally, they are reproductively active in SD and inactive in LD. We addressed the hypothesis that appetite-regulatory genes in the hypothalamus respond differently to changes in nutritional feedback induced by photoperiod as opposed to food restriction, and that responses would be influenced by gonadal steroid status. Castrated oestradiol-implanted male sheep were kept in SD (8 h light/day) or LD (16 h light/day) for 11 weeks, with ad libitum or restricted food (experiment 1; n=8/group). Rams were kept in SD or LD for 12 weeks with ad libitum or restricted food (experiment 2; n=6/group). Gene expression (by in situ hybridisation) in the hypothalamic arcuate nucleus for leptin receptor (OB-Rb), neuropeptide Y (NPY), pro-opiomelanocortin (POMC) and agouti-related peptide (AGRP) was unaffected by photoperiod treatment, but food restriction increased NPY and AGRP mRNAs, in experiment 1. In experiment 2, mRNAs for POMC and cocaine- and amphetamine-regulated transcript (CART) were up-regulated and AGRP down-regulated in SD, while food restriction increased OB-Rb mRNA, increased NPY and AGRP mRNAs only in LD and decreased POMC mRNA only in SD. Thus, gene expression responded differently to photoperiod and food restriction, and the melanocortin pathway was up-regulated in SD in reproductively activated rams but not in oestradiol-implanted castrates. These data support the hypothesis that hypothalamic appetite-regulatory pathways respond differently to changes in nutritional feedback induced by photoperiod as opposed to food restriction, with gonadal steroid feedback additionally influencing the responses.

  1. Melanocortin 4 receptor ligands modulate energy homeostasis through urocortin 1 neurons of the centrally projecting Edinger-Westphal nucleus.

    PubMed

    Füredi, Nóra; Nagy, Ákos; Mikó, Alexandra; Berta, Gergely; Kozicz, Tamás; Pétervári, Erika; Balaskó, Márta; Gaszner, Balázs

    2017-03-03

    The role of the urocortin 1 (Ucn1) expressing centrally projecting Edinger-Westphal (EWcp) nucleus in energy homeostasis and stress adaptation response has previously been investigated. Morphological and functional studies have proven that orexigenic and anorexigenic peptidergic afferents and receptors for endocrine messengers involved in the energy homeostasis are found in the EWcp. The central role of the hypothalamic melanocortin system in energy homeostasis is well known, however, no data have been published so far on possible crosstalk between melanocortins and EWcp-Ucn1. First, we hypothesized that members of the melanocortin system [i.e. alpha-melanocyte stimulating hormone (alpha-MSH), agouti-related peptide (AgRP), melanocortin 4 receptor (MC4R)] would be expressed in the EWcp. Second, we put forward, that alpha-MSH and AgRP contents as well as neuronal activity and Ucn1 peptide content of the EWcp would be affected by fasting. Third, we assumed that the intra-EWcp injections of exogenous MC4R agonists and antagonist would cause food intake-related and metabolic changes. Ucn1 neurons were found to carry MC4Rs, and they were contacted both by alpha-MSH and AgRP immunoreactive nerve fibers in the rat. The alpha-MSH immunosignal was reduced, while that of AgRP was increased upon starvation. These were associated with the elevation of FosB and Ucn1 expression. The intra-EWcp administration of MC4R blocker (i.e. HS024) had a similar, but enhanced effect on FosB and Ucn1. Furthermore, alpha-MSH injected into the EWcp had anorexigenic effect, increased oxygen consumption and caused peripheral vasodilation. We conclude that the melanocortin system influences the EWcp that contributes to energy-homeostasis.

  2. The tyrosine kinase receptor Tyro3 enhances lifespan and neuropeptide Y (Npy) neuron survival in the mouse anorexia (anx) mutation.

    PubMed

    Kim, Dennis Y; Yu, Joanna; Mui, Ryan K; Niibori, Rieko; Taufique, Hamza Bin; Aslam, Rukhsana; Semple, John W; Cordes, Sabine P

    2017-01-12

    Severe appetite and weight loss define the eating disorder anorexia nervosa, and can also accompany the progression of some neurodegenerative disorders, such as amyotrophic lateral scelerosis (ALS). While acute loss of hypothalamic neurons that produce appetite-stimulating neuropeptide Y (Npy) and agouti related peptide (AgRP) in adult mice or in mice homozygous for the anorexia (anx) mutation causes aphagia, our understanding of the factors that help maintain appetite regulatory circuitry is limited. Here we identify a mutation that converts an arginine to a tryptophan (R7W) in the Tyrosine receptor kinase 3 (Tyro3) gene, which resides within the anx critical interval, as contributing to the severity of anx phenotypes. Our observation that, like Tyro3-/- mice, anx/anx mice exhibit abnormal secondary platelet aggregation suggested that the R7W-Tyro3 variant might have functional consequences. Tyro3 is expressed in the hypothalamus and other brain regions affected by the anx mutation, and its mRNA localization appeared abnormal in anx/anx brains by postnatal day 19 (P19). The presence of wild type Tyro3 transgenes, but not an R7W-Tyro 3 transgene, doubled the weight and lifespans of anx/anx mice and near normal numbers of hypothalamic Npy-expressing neurons were present in Tyro3-transgenic anx/anx mice at P19. While no differences in R7W-Tyro3 signal sequence function or protein localization were discernible in vitro, distribution of R7W-Tyro3 protein differed from that of Tyro3 protein in the cerebellum of transgenic wild type mice. Thus, R7W-Tyro3 protein localization deficits are only detectable in vivo. Further analyses revealed that the R7W-Tyro3 variant is present in a few other mouse strains, and hence is not the causative anx mutation, but rather an anx modifier. Our work shows that Tyro3 has prosurvival roles in the appetite regulatory circuitry and may also provide useful insights towards the development of interventions targeting detrimental weight loss.

  3. Maternal nicotine exposure during lactation alters hypothalamic neuropeptides expression in the adult rat progeny.

    PubMed

    Younes-Rapozo, Viviane; Moura, Egberto G; Manhães, Alex C; Pinheiro, Cintia R; Santos-Silva, Ana Paula; de Oliveira, Elaine; Lisboa, Patricia C

    2013-08-01

    Maternal exposure to nicotine during lactation causes hyperleptinemia in the pups and, at adulthood, these animals are overweight and hyperleptinemic, while, in their hypothalamus, the leptin signaling pathway is reduced, evidencing a central leptin resistance. Then, we evaluated the expression of pro-opiomelanocortin (POMC), alpha-melanocyte stimulating hormone (α-MSH), cocaine and amphetamine-regulated transcript (CART), neuropeptide Y (NPY), agouti-related peptide (AgRP) and others in different hypothalamic nuclei in order to better understand the mechanisms underlying the obese phenotype observed in these animals at adulthood. On the 2nd postnatal day (P2), dams were subcutaneously implanted with osmotic minipumps releasing nicotine (NIC-6 mg/kg/day) or saline for 14 days. Offspring were killed in P180 and immunohistochemistry and Western blot analysis were carried out. Significance data had p<0.05. Adult NIC offspring showed more intense NPY staining in the paraventricular nucleus (PVN) (+21%) and increased number of POMC-positive cells in the: arcuate nucleus (+33%), as an increase in fiber density of α-MSH in PVN (+85%). However, the number of CART-positive cells was reduced in the PVN (-25%). CRH staining was more intense in NIC offspring (+136%). Orexins and AgRP were not altered. Thus, maternal nicotine exposure changes hypothalamic neuropeptides in the adult progeny that is partially compatible with leptin resistance.

  4. Transgenic n-3 PUFAs enrichment leads to weight loss via modulating neuropeptides in hypothalamus.

    PubMed

    Ma, Shuangshuang; Ge, Yinlin; Gai, Xiaoying; Xue, Meilan; Li, Ning; Kang, Jingxuan; Wan, Jianbo; Zhang, Jinyu

    2016-01-12

    Body weight is related to fat mass, which is associated with obesity. Our study explored the effect of fat-1 gene on body weight in fat-1 transgenic mice. In present study, we observed that the weight/length ratio of fat-1 transgenic mice was lower than that of wild-type mice. The serum levels of triglycerides (TG), cholesterol (CT), high-density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL-c), low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-c) and blood glucose (BG) in fat-1 transgenic mice were all decreased. The weights of peri-bowels fat, perirenal fat and peri-testicular fat in fat-1 transgenic mice were reduced. We hypothesized that increase of n-3 PUFAs might alter the expression of hypothalamic neuropeptide genes and lead to loss of body weight in fat-1 transgenic mice. Therefore, we measured mRNA levels of appetite neuropeptides, Neuropeptide Y (NPY), Agouti-related peptides (AgRP), Proopiomelanocortin (POMC), Cocaine and amphetamine regulated transcript (CART), ghrelin and nesfatin-1 in hypothalamus by real-time PCR. Compared with wild-type mice, the mRNA levels of CART, POMC and ghrelin were higher, while the mRNA levels of NPY, AgRP and nesfatin-1 were lower in fat-1 transgenic mice. The results indicate that fat-1 gene or n-3 PUFAs participates in regulation of body weight, and the mechanism of this phenomenon involves the expression of appetite neuropeptides and lipoproteins in fat-1 transgenic mice.

  5. Effects of risperidone treatment on the expression of hypothalamic neuropeptide in appetite regulation in Wistar rats.

    PubMed

    Kursungoz, Canan; Ak, Mehmet; Yanik, Tulin

    2015-01-30

    Although the use of atypical antipsychotic drugs has been successful in the treatment of schizophrenia, they can cause some complications in the long-term use, including weight gain. Patients using these drugs tend to disrupt treatment primarily due to side effects. The atypical antipsychotic mechanism of action regulates a number of highly disrupted neurotransmitter pathways in the brains of psychotic patients but may also cause impairment of neurohormonal pathways in different brain areas. In this study, we investigated the circulating levels of hypothalamic neurohormones, which are related to appetite regulation; neuropeptide Y (NPY); alpha melanocyte stimulating hormone (α-MSH); cocaine and amphetamine regulated transcript (CART); agouti-related peptide (AgRP); and leptin in male Wistar rats, which were treated with risperidone, a serotonin antagonist, for four weeks. Alterations in the mRNA expression levels of these candidate genes in the hypothalamus were also analyzed. We hypothesized that risperidone treatment might alter both hypothalamic and circulating levels of neuropeptides through serotonergic antagonism, resulting in weight gain. Gene expression studies revealed that the mRNA expression levels of proopiomelanocortin (POMC), AgRP, and NPY decreased as well as their plasma levels, except for NPY. Unexpectedly, CART mRNA levels increased when their plasma levels decreased. Because POMC neurons express the serotonin receptor (5HT2C), the serotonergic antagonism of risperidone on POMC neurons may cause an increase in appetite and thus increase food consumption even in a short-term trial in rats.

  6. Energy Balance Regulating Neuropeptides Are Expressed through Pregnancy and Regulated by Interleukin-6 Deficiency in Mouse Placenta

    PubMed Central

    Pazos, Patricia; Lima, Luis; Diéguez, Carlos; García, María C.

    2014-01-01

    The placenta produces a number of signaling molecules including metabolic and reproductive hormones as well as several inflammatory mediators. Among them, Interleukin-6 (IL-6), a well-known immune and metabolic regulator, acts peripherally modulating metabolic function and centrally increasing energy expenditure and reducing body fat. IL-6 interacts with key hypothalamic neuropeptidergic systems controlling energy homeostasis such as those producing the orexigenic/anabolic: neuropeptide Y (NPY) and agouti-related peptide (AgRP) and anorectic/catabolic neuropeptides: proopiomelanocortin (POMC) and cocaine and amphetamine regulated transcript (CART). Human and rat placenta have been identified as source of these neuropeptides, but their expression and regulation in murine placental tissues remain unknown. Therefore, placental mRNA levels of IL-6, NPY, AgRP, POMC, and CART at different pregnancy stages (gestational days 13, 15, and 18) were analyzed by real time PCR, as were the effect of IL-6 deficiency (IL-6 knockout mice) on their placental expression. Our results showed that placenta-derived neuropeptides were regulated by gestational age and IL-6 throughout the second half of mouse pregnancy. These data suggest that IL-6 may participate in the fine tune control of energy balance during pregnancy by extending its action as a metabolic signal to the main organ at the fetomaternal interface: the placenta. PMID:24744782

  7. Protein Condensation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gunton, James D.; Shiryayev, Andrey; Pagan, Daniel L.

    2007-09-01

    Preface; 1. Introduction; 2. Globular protein structure; 3. Experimental methods; 4. Thermodynamics and statistical mechanics; 5. Protein-protein interactions; 6. Theoretical studies of equilibrium; 7. Nucleation theory; 8. Experimental studies of nucleation; 9. Lysozyme; 10. Some other globular proteins; 11. Membrane proteins; 12. Crystallins and cataracts; 13. Sickle hemoglobin and sickle cell anemia; 14, Alzheimer's disease; Index.

  8. Protein Condensation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gunton, James D.; Shiryayev, Andrey; Pagan, Daniel L.

    2014-07-01

    Preface; 1. Introduction; 2. Globular protein structure; 3. Experimental methods; 4. Thermodynamics and statistical mechanics; 5. Protein-protein interactions; 6. Theoretical studies of equilibrium; 7. Nucleation theory; 8. Experimental studies of nucleation; 9. Lysozyme; 10. Some other globular proteins; 11. Membrane proteins; 12. Crystallins and cataracts; 13. Sickle hemoglobin and sickle cell anemia; 14, Alzheimer's disease; Index.

  9. Altered position of cell bodies and fibers in the ventromedial region in SF-1 knockout mice

    PubMed Central

    Büdefeld, Tomaz; Tobet, Stuart A.; Majdic, Gregor

    2011-01-01

    The ventromedial nucleus of the hypothalamus (VMH) is a key cell group in the medial-basal hypothalamus that participates in the regulation of energy balance. Previous studies have shown that the cellular organization of the VMH is altered in mice with a disruption of the steroidogenic factor-1 (NR5a1) gene (SF-1 KO mice). The present study examined orexigenic/anorexigenic peptides (neuropeptide Y (NPY), agouti-related peptide (AgRP) and cocaine- and amphetamine-regulated transcript (CART)) and neural connections to and from the VMH in SF1 KO mice. NeuroVue tracing and Golgi staining were used to evaluate connections between the preoptic area (POA) and VMH and the orientation of dendrites in the VMH, respectively. Results of this study reveal changes in the cytoarchitecture of the region of the VMH with respect to the distribution of immunoreactive NPY, AgRP and CART. In WT mice projections from the POA normally surround the VMH while in SF-1 KO mice, projections from the POA stream through the region that would otherwise be VMH. Golgi impregnation of the region revealed fewer dendrites with ventrolateral orientations and in general, more variable dendritic orientations in SF-1 KO mice providing additional evidence that the connectivity of cells in the region is likely altered due to the cellular rearrangements consequent to disruption of the NR5a1 gene. In conclusion, this study greatly extends the data showing that the morphology of the regions containing the VMH is disrupted in SF-1 KO mice and suggests that changes in the location of cells or fibers containing NPY, AgRP and CART may, in part, account for changes in body weight homeostasis in these mice. PMID:21906594

  10. Diet-induced obesity causes ghrelin resistance in arcuate NPY/AgRP neurons.

    PubMed

    Briggs, Dana I; Enriori, Pablo J; Lemus, Moyra B; Cowley, Michael A; Andrews, Zane B

    2010-10-01

    Circulating ghrelin is decreased in obesity, and peripheral ghrelin does not induce food intake in obese mice. We investigated whether ghrelin resistance was a centrally mediated phenomenon involving dysregulated neuropeptide Y (NPY) and agouti-related peptide (AgRP) circuits. We show that diet-induced obesity (DIO) (12 wk) suppresses the neuroendocrine ghrelin system by decreasing acylated and total plasma ghrelin, decreasing ghrelin and Goat mRNA in the stomach, and decreasing expression of hypothalamic GHSR. Peripheral (ip) or central (intracerebroventricular) ghrelin injection was able to induce food intake and arcuate nucleus Fos immunoreactivity in chow-fed but not high-fat diet-fed mice. DIO decreased expression of Npy and Agrp mRNA, and central ghrelin was unable to promote expression of these genes. Ghrelin did not induce AgRP or NPY secretion in hypothalamic explants from DIO mice. Injection of NPY intracerebroventricularly increased food intake in both chow-fed and high-fat diet-fed mice, indicating that downstream NPY/AgRP neural targets are intact and that defective NPY/AgRP function is a primary cause of ghrelin resistance. Ghrelin resistance in DIO is not confined to the NPY/AgRP neurons, because ghrelin did not stimulate growth hormone secretion in DIO mice. Collectively, our data suggests that DIO causes ghrelin resistance by reducing NPY/AgRP responsiveness to plasma ghrelin and suppressing the neuroendocrine ghrelin axis to limit further food intake. Ghrelin has a number of functions in the brain aside from appetite control, including cognitive function, mood regulation, and protecting against neurodegenerative diseases. Thus, central ghrelin resistance may potentiate obesity-related cognitive decline, and restoring ghrelin sensitivity may provide therapeutic outcomes for maintaining healthy aging.

  11. Hyperphagia and central mechanisms for leptin resistance during pregnancy.

    PubMed

    Trujillo, M L; Spuch, C; Carro, E; Señarís, R

    2011-04-01

    The purpose of this work was to study the central mechanisms involved in food intake regulation and leptin resistance during gestation in the rat. Sprague Dawley rats of 7, 13, and 18 d of pregnancy [days of gestation (G) 7, G13, and G18] were used and compared with nonpregnant animals in diestrus-1. Food intake was already increased in G7, before hyperleptinemia and central leptin resistance was established in midpregnancy. Leptin resistance was due to a reduction in leptin transport through the blood-brain barrier (BBB) and to alterations in leptin signaling within the hypothalamus based on an increase in suppressor of cytokine signaling 3 levels and a blockade of signal transducer and activator of transcription-3 phosphorylation (G13), followed by a decrease in LepRb and of Akt phosphorylation (G18). In early gestation (G7), no change in hypothalamic neuropeptide Y (NPY), agouti-related peptide (AgRP), or proopiomelanocortin (POMC) expression was shown. Nevertheless, an increase in NPY and AgRP and a decrease in POMC mRNA were observed in G13 and G18 rats, probably reflecting the leptin resistance. To investigate the effect of maternal vs. placental hormones on these mechanisms, we used a model of pseudogestation. Rats of 9 d of pseudogestation were hyperphagic, showing an increase in body and adipose tissue weight, normoleptinemia, and normal responses to iv/intracerebroventricular leptin on hypothalamic leptin signaling, food intake, and body weight. Leptin transport through the BBB, and hypothalamic NPY, AgRP and POMC expression were unchanged. Finally, the transport of leptin through the BBB was assessed using a double-chamber culture system of choroid plexus epithelial cells or brain microvascular endothelial cells. We found that sustained high levels of prolactin significantly reduced leptin translocation through the barrier, whereas progesterone and β-estradiol did not show any effect. Our data demonstrate a dual mechanism of leptin resistance during mid

  12. NDR proteins

    PubMed Central

    Jones, Alan M

    2010-01-01

    N-myc downregulated (NDR) genes were discovered more than fifteen years ago. Indirect evidence support a role in tumor progression and cellular differentiation, but their biochemical function is still unknown. Our detailed analyses on Arabidopsis NDR proteins (deisgnated NDR-like, NDL) show their involvement in altering auxin transport, local auxin gradients and expression level of auxin transport proteins. Animal NDL proteins may be involved in membrane recycling of E-cadherin and effector for the small GTPase. In light of these findings, we hypothesize that NDL proteins regulate vesicular trafficking of auxin transport facilitator PIN proteins by biochemically alterating the local lipid environment of PIN proteins. PMID:20724844

  13. Proteins (image)

    MedlinePlus

    ... is an important nutrient that builds muscles and bones and provides energy. Protein can help with weight control because it helps you feel full and satisfied from your meals. The healthiest proteins are the leanest. This means ...

  14. Protein Structure

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Asmus, Elaine Garbarino

    2007-01-01

    Individual students model specific amino acids and then, through dehydration synthesis, a class of students models a protein. The students clearly learn amino acid structure, primary, secondary, tertiary, and quaternary structure in proteins and the nature of the bonds maintaining a protein's shape. This activity is fun, concrete, inexpensive and…

  15. Therapeutic proteins.

    PubMed

    Dimitrov, Dimiter S

    2012-01-01

    Protein-based therapeutics are highly successful in clinic and currently enjoy unprecedented recognition of their potential. More than 100 genuine and similar number of modified therapeutic proteins are approved for clinical use in the European Union and the USA with 2010 sales of US$108 bln; monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) accounted for almost half (48%) of the sales. Based on their pharmacological activity, they can be divided into five groups: (a) replacing a protein that is deficient or abnormal; (b) augmenting an existing pathway; (c) providing a novel function or activity; (d) interfering with a molecule or organism; and (e) delivering other compounds or proteins, such as a radionuclide, cytotoxic drug, or effector proteins. Therapeutic proteins can also be grouped based on their molecular types that include antibody-based drugs, Fc fusion proteins, anticoagulants, blood factors, bone morphogenetic proteins, engineered protein scaffolds, enzymes, growth factors, hormones, interferons, interleukins, and thrombolytics. They can also be classified based on their molecular mechanism of activity as (a) binding non-covalently to target, e.g., mAbs; (b) affecting covalent bonds, e.g., enzymes; and (c) exerting activity without specific interactions, e.g., serum albumin. Most protein therapeutics currently on the market are recombinant and hundreds of them are in clinical trials for therapy of cancers, immune disorders, infections, and other diseases. New engineered proteins, including bispecific mAbs and multispecific fusion proteins, mAbs conjugated with small molecule drugs, and proteins with optimized pharmacokinetics, are currently under development. However, in the last several decades, there are no conceptually new methodological developments comparable, e.g., to genetic engineering leading to the development of recombinant therapeutic proteins. It appears that a paradigm change in methodologies and understanding of mechanisms is needed to overcome major

  16. Whey Protein

    MedlinePlus

    ... inflammation (polymyalgia rheumatica). Taking whey protein in a dairy product twice daily for 8 weeks does not improve muscle function, walking speed, or other movement tests in people with polymyalgia rheumatica. Other conditions. More evidence is needed to rate whey protein for these uses.

  17. Total protein

    MedlinePlus

    ... 2016:chap 215. Read More Agammaglobulinemia Albumin - blood (serum) test Amino acids Antibody Burns Chronic Congenital nephrotic syndrome Fibrinogen blood test Glomerulonephritis Hemoglobin Liver disease Malabsorption Multiple myeloma Polycythemia vera Protein in diet ...

  18. Differential effects of methamphetamine on expression of neuropeptide Y mRNA in hypothalamus and on serum leptin and ghrelin concentrations in ad libitum-fed and schedule-fed rats.

    PubMed

    Crowley, W R; Ramoz, G; Keefe, K A; Torto, R; Kalra, S P; Hanson, G R

    2005-01-01

    Relatively little is known concerning the interaction of psychostimulants with hypothalamic neuropeptide systems or metabolic hormones implicated in regulation of energy balance. The present studies tested whether methamphetamine alters the expression of neuropeptide Y (NPY) and agouti-related peptide (AgRP), two important orexigenic neuropeptides, or proopiomelanocortin (POMC), the precursor for the anorexigenic peptide alpha-melanocyte-stimulating hormone, or the secretion of leptin, insulin and ghrelin, concomitant with inhibition of food intake. Female rats were either fed ad libitum (AL) or placed on a scheduled feeding (SF) regimen, with access to food limited to 4 h/day. Administration of (+/-)-methamphetamine (7.5 mg/kg, i.p.) 2 h prior to food presentation significantly inhibited food intake in SF animals, but did not affect intake in AL animals. In a separate study, AL and SF animals were killed just prior to expected food presentation, and expression of NPY, AgRP and POMC mRNAs in hypothalamus was determined using in situ hybridisation; concentrations of leptin, insulin and ghrelin in serum were determined with radioimmunoassays. In saline-treated, SF controls, NPY and AgRP mRNA expression in arcuate nucleus and serum ghrelin were significantly elevated, and serum leptin and insulin were significantly reduced. Methamphetamine reversed the up-regulation of NPY mRNA expression observed in the SF condition, without affecting AgRP mRNA or the serum concentrations of metabolic hormones. However, in AL animals, NPY mRNA expression in arcuate and dorsomedial nuclei was significantly increased by methamphetamine, which also reduced serum leptin and insulin and increased serum ghrelin concentrations. These findings suggest that the inhibition of NPY expression in SF animals may be a mechanism underlying the anorexigenic effect of methamphetamine seen in this condition. The increase in NPY expression produced by methamphetamine in AL animals may be mediated by the

  19. Protein Crystallizability.

    PubMed

    Smialowski, Pawel; Wong, Philip

    2016-01-01

    Obtaining diffracting quality crystals remains a major challenge in protein structure research. We summarize and compare methods for selecting the best protein targets for crystallization, construct optimization and crystallization condition design. Target selection methods are divided into algorithms predicting the chance of successful progression through all stages of structural determination (from cloning to solving the structure) and those focusing only on the crystallization step. We tried to highlight pros and cons of different approaches examining the following aspects: data size, redundancy and representativeness, overfitting during model construction, and results evaluation. In summary, although in recent years progress was made and several sequence properties were reported to be relevant for crystallization, the successful prediction of protein crystallization behavior and selection of corresponding crystallization conditions continue to challenge structural researchers.

  20. Protein Crystallization

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Chernov, Alexander A.

    2005-01-01

    Nucleation, growth and perfection of protein crystals will be overviewed along with crystal mechanical properties. The knowledge is based on experiments using optical and force crystals behave similar to inorganic crystals, though with a difference in orders of magnitude in growing parameters. For example, the low incorporation rate of large biomolecules requires up to 100 times larger supersaturation to grow protein, rather than inorganic crystals. Nucleation is often poorly reproducible, partly because of turbulence accompanying the mixing of precipitant with protein solution. Light scattering reveals fluctuations of molecular cluster size, its growth, surface energies and increased clustering as protein ages. Growth most often occurs layer-by-layer resulting in faceted crystals. New molecular layer on crystal face is terminated by a step where molecular incorporation occurs. Quantitative data on the incorporation rate will be discussed. Rounded crystals with molecularly disordered interfaces will be explained. Defects in crystals compromise the x-ray diffraction resolution crucially needed to find the 3D atomic structure of biomolecules. The defects are immobile so that birth defects stay forever. All lattice defects known for inorganics are revealed in protein crystals. Contribution of molecular conformations to lattice disorder is important, but not studied. This contribution may be enhanced by stress field from other defects. Homologous impurities (e.g., dimers, acetylated molecules) are trapped more willingly by a growing crystal than foreign protein impurities. The trapped impurities induce internal stress eliminated in crystals exceeding a critical size (part of mni for ferritin, lysozyme). Lesser impurities are trapped from stagnant, as compared to the flowing, solution. Freezing may induce much more defects unless quickly amorphysizing intracrystalline water.

  1. Recombinant protein production technology

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Recombinant protein production is an important technology for antibody production, biochemical activity study, and structural determination during the post-genomic era. Limiting factors in recombinant protein production include low-level protein expression, protein precipitation, and loss of protein...

  2. Protein inference: A protein quantification perspective.

    PubMed

    He, Zengyou; Huang, Ting; Liu, Xiaoqing; Zhu, Peijun; Teng, Ben; Deng, Shengchun

    2016-08-01

    In mass spectrometry-based shotgun proteomics, protein quantification and protein identification are two major computational problems. To quantify the protein abundance, a list of proteins must be firstly inferred from the raw data. Then the relative or absolute protein abundance is estimated with quantification methods, such as spectral counting. Until now, most researchers have been dealing with these two processes separately. In fact, the protein inference problem can be regarded as a special protein quantification problem in the sense that truly present proteins are those proteins whose abundance values are not zero. Some recent published papers have conceptually discussed this possibility. However, there is still a lack of rigorous experimental studies to test this hypothesis. In this paper, we investigate the feasibility of using protein quantification methods to solve the protein inference problem. Protein inference methods aim to determine whether each candidate protein is present in the sample or not. Protein quantification methods estimate the abundance value of each inferred protein. Naturally, the abundance value of an absent protein should be zero. Thus, we argue that the protein inference problem can be viewed as a special protein quantification problem in which one protein is considered to be present if its abundance is not zero. Based on this idea, our paper tries to use three simple protein quantification methods to solve the protein inference problem effectively. The experimental results on six data sets show that these three methods are competitive with previous protein inference algorithms. This demonstrates that it is plausible to model the protein inference problem as a special protein quantification task, which opens the door of devising more effective protein inference algorithms from a quantification perspective. The source codes of our methods are available at: http://code.google.com/p/protein-inference/.

  3. Food intake inhibition in rainbow trout induced by activation of serotonin 5-HT2C receptors is associated with increases in POMC, CART and CRF mRNA abundance in hypothalamus.

    PubMed

    Pérez-Maceira, Jorge J; Otero-Rodiño, Cristina; Mancebo, María J; Soengas, José L; Aldegunde, Manuel

    2016-04-01

    In rainbow trout, the food intake inhibition induced by serotonin occurs through 5-HT2C and 5-HT1A receptors, though the mechanisms involved are still unknown. Therefore, we assessed if a direct stimulation of 5-HT2C and 5-HT1A serotonin receptors (resulting in decreased food intake in rainbow trout), affects gene expression of neuropeptides involved in the control of food intake, such as pro-opiomelanocortin (POMC), cocaine- and amphetamine-regulated transcript (CART), corticotrophin releasing factor (CRF), and agouti-related peptide (AgRP). In a first set of experiments, the injection of the 5-HT2C receptor agonists MK212 (60 μg kg(-1) icv) and WAY 161503 (1 mg kg(-1) ip), and of the 5-HT1A receptor agonist 8-OH-DPAT (1 mg kg(-1) ip and 30 μg kg(-1) icv) induced food intake inhibition. In a second set of experiments, we observed that the injection of MK212 or WAY 161503 (1 and 3 mg kg(-1)) significantly increased hypothalamic POMC mRNA abundance. CART mRNA abundance in hypothalamus was enhanced by treatment with MK212 and unaffected by WAY 161503. The administration of the 5-HT1A receptor agonist 8-OH-DPAT did not induce any significant variation in the hypothalamic POMC or CART mRNA levels. CRF mRNA abundance was only affected by MK212 that increased hypothalamic values. Finally, hypothalamic AgRP mRNA abundance was only evaluated with the agonist 5-HT2C MK212 resulting in no significant effects. The results show that the reduction in food intake mediated by 5-HT2C receptors is associated with increases in hypothalamic POMC, CART and CRF mRNA abundance.

  4. Impact of glucose infusion on the structural and functional characteristics of adipose tissue and on hypothalamic gene expression for appetite regulatory neuropeptides in the sheep fetus during late gestation.

    PubMed

    Mühlhäusler, B S; Adam, C L; Marrocco, E M; Findlay, P A; Roberts, C T; McFarlane, J R; Kauter, K G; McMillen, I C

    2005-05-15

    In the present study, our aim was to determine whether intrafetal glucose infusion increases fetal adiposity, synthesis and secretion of leptin and regulates gene expression of the 'appetite regulatory' neuropeptides neuropepetide Y (NPY), agouti-related peptide (AGRP), pro-opiomelanocortin (POMC) and cocaine- and amphetamine-regulated transcript (CART) and receptors (leptin receptor (OB-Rb) and melancortin 3 receptor (MC3R)) within the fetal hypothalamus. Glucose (50% dextrose in saline) or saline was infused (7.5 ml h(-1)) into fetal sheep between 130 and 140 days gestation (term = 150 +/- 3 days gestation). Glucose infusion increased circulating glucose and insulin concentrations, mean lipid locule size (532.8 +/- 3.3 microm2 versus 456.7 +/- 14.8 microm2) and total unilocular fat mass (11.7 +/- 0.6 g versus 8.9 +/- 0.6 g) of the perirenal fat depot. The expression of OB-Rb mRNA was higher in the ventromedial nucleus compared to the arcuate nucleus of the hypothalamus in both glucose and saline infused fetuses (F= 8.04; P < 0.01) and there was a positive correlation between expression of OB-Rb and MC3R mRNA in the arcuate nucleus (r= 0.81; P < 0.005). Glucose infusion increased mRNA expression for POMC, but not for the anorectic neuropeptide CART, or the orexigenic neuropeptides NPY and AGRP, in the arcuate nucleus of the fetal hypothalamus. These findings demonstrate that increased circulating glucose and insulin regulate gene expression of the neuropeptides within the fetal hypothalamus that are part of the neural network regulating energy balance in adult life.

  5. Seasonal Differences in Relative Gene Expression of Putative Central Appetite Regulators in Arctic Charr (Salvelinus alpinus) Do Not Reflect Its Annual Feeding Cycle.

    PubMed

    Striberny, Anja; Ravuri, Chandra Sekhar; Jobling, Malcolm; Jørgensen, Even Hjalmar

    2015-01-01

    The highly seasonal anadromous Arctic charr (Salvelinus alpinus) was used to investigate the possible involvement of altered gene expression of brain neuropeptides in seasonal appetite regulation. Pro-opiomelanocortin (POMCA1, POMCA2), Cocaine and amphetamine regulated transcript (CART), Agouti related Peptide (AgRP), Neuropeptide Y (NPY) and Melanocortin Receptor 4 (MC4-R) genes were examined. The function of centrally expressed Leptin (Lep) in fish remains unclear, so Lep (LepA1, LepA2) and Leptin Receptor (LepR) genes were included in the investigation. In a ten months study gene expression was analysed in hypothalamus, mesencephalon and telencephalon of immature charr held under natural photoperiod (69°38'N) and ambient temperature and given excess feed. From April to the beginning of June the charr did not feed and lost weight, during July and August they were feeding and had a marked increase in weight and condition factor, and from November until the end of the study the charr lost appetite and decreased in weight and condition factor. Brain compartments were sampled from non-feeding charr (May), feeding charr (July), and non-feeding charr (January). Reverse transcription real-time quantitative PCR revealed temporal patterns of gene expression that differed across brain compartments. The non-feeding charr (May, January) had a lower expression of the anorexigenic LepA1, MC4-R and LepR in hypothalamus and a higher expression of the orexigenic NPY and AgRP in mesencephalon, than the feeding charr (July). In the telencephalon, LepR was more highly expressed in January and May than in July. These results do not indicate that changes in central gene expression of the neuropeptides investigated here directly induce seasonal changes in feeding in Arctic charr.

  6. Dietary fat alters the response of hypothalamic neuropeptide Y to subsequent energy intake in broiler chickens.

    PubMed

    Wang, Xiao J; Xu, Shao H; Liu, Lei; Song, Zhi G; Jiao, Hong C; Lin, Hai

    2017-02-15

    Dietary fat affects appetite and appetite-related peptides in birds and mammals; however, the effect of dietary fat on appetite is still unclear in chickens faced with different energy statuses. Two experiments were conducted to investigate the effects of dietary fat on food intake and hypothalamic neuropeptides in chickens subjected to two feeding states or two diets. In Experiment 1, chickens were fed a high-fat (HF) or low-fat (LF) diet for 35 days, and then subjected to fed (HF-fed, LF-fed) or fasted (HF-fasted, LF-fasted) conditions for 24 h. In Experiment 2, chickens that were fed a HF or LF diet for 35 days were fasted for 24 h and then re-fed with HF (HF-RHF, LF-RHF) or LF (HF-RLF, LF-RLF) diet for 3 h. The results showed that chickens fed a HF diet for 35 days had increased body fat deposition despite decreasing food intake even when the diet was altered during the re-feeding period (P<0.05). LF diet (35 days) promoted agouti-related peptide (AgRP) expression compared with HF diet (P<0.05) under both fed and fasted conditions. LF-RHF chickens had lower neuropeptide Y (NPY) expression compared with LF-RLF chickens; conversely, HF-RHF chickens had higher NPY expression than HF-RLF chickens (P<0.05). These results demonstrate: (1) that HF diet decreases food intake even when the subsequent diet is altered; (2) the orexigenic effect of hypothalamic AgRP; and (3) that dietary fat alters the response of hypothalamic NPY to subsequent energy intake. These findings provide a novel view of the metabolic perturbations associated with long-term dietary fat over-ingestion in chickens.

  7. Transient early food restriction leads to hypothalamic changes in the long-lived crowded litter female mice

    PubMed Central

    Sadagurski, Marianna; Landeryou, Taylor; Cady, Gillian; Bartke, Andrzej; Bernal-Mizrachi, Ernesto; Miller, Richard A

    2015-01-01

    Transient nutrient restriction in the 3 weeks between birth and weaning (producing “crowded litter” or CL mice) leads to a significant increase in lifespan and is associated with permanent changes in energy homeostasis, leptin, and insulin sensitivity. Here, we show this brief period of early food restriction leads to permanent modulation of the arcuate nucleus of the hypothalamus (ARH), markedly increasing formation of both orexigenic agouti-related peptide (AgRP) and anorexigenic proopiomelanocortin (POMC) projections to the paraventricular nucleus of the hypothalamus (PVH). An additional 4 weeks of caloric restriction, after weaning, does not further intensify the formation of AgRP and POMC projections. Acute leptin stimulation of 12-month-old mice leads to a stronger increase in the levels of hypothalamic pStat3 and cFos activity in CL mice than in controls, suggesting that preweaning food restriction leads to long-lasting enhancement of leptin signaling. In contrast, FoxO1 nuclear exclusion in response to insulin is equivalent in young adult CL and control mice, suggesting that hypothalamic insulin signaling is not modulated by the crowded litter intervention. Markers of hypothalamic reactive gliosis associated with aging, such as Iba1-positive microglia and GFAP-positive astrocytes, are significantly reduced in CL mice as compared to controls at 12 and 22 months of age. Lastly, age-associated overproduction of TNF-α in microglial cells is reduced in CL mice than in age-matched controls. Together, these results suggest that transient early life nutrient deprivation leads to long-term hypothalamic changes which may contribute to the longevity of CL mice. PMID:25907790

  8. The central anorexigenic mechanism of adrenocorticotropic hormone involves the caudal hypothalamus in chicks.

    PubMed

    Shipp, Steven L; Yi, Jiaqing; Dridi, Sami; Gilbert, Elizabeth R; Cline, Mark A

    2015-10-01

    Adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH), consisting of 39 amino acids, is most well-known for its involvement in an organism's response to stress. It also participates in satiety, as exogenous ACTH causes decreased food intake in rats. However, its anorexigenic mechanism is not well understood in any species and its effect on appetite is not reported in the avian class. Thus, the present study was designed to evaluate central ACTH's effect on food intake and to elucidate the mechanism mediating this response using broiler chicks. Chicks that received intracerebroventricular (ICV) injection of 1, 2, or 4 nmol of ACTH reduced food intake, under both ad libitum and 180 min fasted conditions. Water intake was also reduced in ACTH-injected chicks under both feeding conditions, but when measured without access to feed it was not affected. Blood glucose was not affected in either feeding condition. Following ACTH injection, c-Fos immunoreactivity was quantified in key appetite-associated hypothalamic nuclei including the ventromedial hypothalamus (VMH), dorsomedial hypothalamus, lateral hypothalamus (LH), arcuate nucleus (ARC) and the parvo- and magno-cellular portions of the paraventricular nucleus. ACTH-injected chicks had increased c-Fos immunoreactivity in the VMH, LH, and ARC. Hypothalamus was collected at 1h post-injection, and real-time PCR performed to measure mRNA abundance of some appetite-associated factors. Neuropeptide Y, pro-opiomelanocortin, glutamate decarboxylase 1, melanocortin receptors 2-5, and urocortin 3 mRNA abundance was not affected by ACTH treatment. However, expression of corticotropin releasing factor (CRF), urotensin 2 (UT), agouti-related peptide (AgRP), and orexin (ORX), and melanocortin receptor 1 (MC1R) mRNA decreased in the hypothalamus of ACTH-injected chicks. In conclusion, ICV ACTH causes decreased food intake in chicks, and is associated with VMH, LH, and ARC activation, and a decrease in hypothalamic mRNA abundance of CRF, UT, AgRP, ORX

  9. Learning about Proteins

    MedlinePlus

    ... What Happens in the Operating Room? Learning About Proteins KidsHealth > For Kids > Learning About Proteins A A ... the foods you eat. continue Different Kinds of Protein Protein from animal sources, such as meat and ...

  10. Protein Microarray Technology

    PubMed Central

    Hall, David A.; Ptacek, Jason

    2007-01-01

    Protein chips have emerged as a promising approach for a wide variety of applications including the identification of protein-protein interactions, protein-phospholipid interactions, small molecule targets, and substrates of proteins kinases. They can also be used for clinical diagnostics and monitoring disease states. This article reviews current methods in the generation and applications of protein microarrays. PMID:17126887

  11. The liver: Key in regulating appetite and body weight.

    PubMed

    Fam, Barbara C; Joannides, Christos N; Andrikopoulos, Sofianos

    2012-10-01

    Liver fructose-1,6-bisphosphatase (FBPase) is a regulatory enzyme in gluconeogenesis that is elevated by obesity and dietary fat intake. Whether FBPase functions only in glucose metabolism or has other metabolic roles is currently unclear. In our recently published study, we examined the importance of liver FBPase in body weight regulation by performing a series of comprehensive physiological and biochemical assessments of energy balance and specific intervention studies in our transgenic mouse line that overexpresses FBPase specifically in the liver. Compared with negative littermates, these FBPase transgenic mice weighed 10% less, had 50% less adiposity, ate 15% less food but did not have altered energy expenditure. Increased circulating leptin and cholecystokinin levels, elevated fatty acid oxidation and reduced appetite stimulating neuropeptides, neuropeptide Y (NPY) and agouti-related peptide (AGRP), underpinned this phenotype. Blocking the action of FBPase returned food intake and body weight to those of the negative littermates. Our study is the first to identify liver FBPase as a previously unknown regulator of appetite and adiposity. Importantly, this work recognizes the liver as an important organ in appetite and body weight regulation. This commentary will provide further insight and expand on this novel concept that the liver does in fact play an important role in adiposity.

  12. Goldfish Leptin-AI and Leptin-AII: Function and Central Mechanism in Feeding Control.

    PubMed

    Yan, Ai-Fen; Chen, Ting; Chen, Shuang; Ren, Chun-Hua; Hu, Chao-Qun; Cai, Yi-Ming; Liu, Fang; Tang, Dong-Sheng

    2016-05-30

    In mammals, leptin is a peripheral satiety factor that inhibits feeding by regulating a variety of appetite-related hormones in the brain. However, most of the previous studies examining leptin in fish feeding were performed with mammalian leptins, which share very low sequence homologies with fish leptins. To elucidate the function and mechanism of endogenous fish leptins in feeding regulation, recombinant goldfish leptin-AI and leptin-AII were expressed in methylotrophic yeast and purified by immobilized metal ion affinity chromatography (IMAC). By intraperitoneal (IP) injection, both leptin-AI and leptin-AII were shown to inhibit the feeding behavior and to reduce the food consumption of goldfish in 2 h. In addition, co-treatment of leptin-AI or leptin-AII could block the feeding behavior and reduce the food consumption induced by neuropeptide Y (NPY) injection. High levels of leptin receptor (lepR) mRNA were detected in the hypothalamus, telencephalon, optic tectum and cerebellum of the goldfish brain. The appetite inhibitory effects of leptins were mediated by downregulating the mRNA levels of orexigenic NPY, agouti-related peptide (AgRP) and orexin and upregulating the mRNA levels of anorexigenic cocaine-amphetamine-regulated transcript (CART), cholecystokinin (CCK), melanin-concentrating hormone (MCH) and proopiomelanocortin (POMC) in different areas of the goldfish brain. Our study, as a whole, provides new insights into the functions and mechanisms of leptins in appetite control in a fish model.

  13. Goldfish Leptin-AI and Leptin-AII: Function and Central Mechanism in Feeding Control

    PubMed Central

    Yan, Ai-Fen; Chen, Ting; Chen, Shuang; Ren, Chun-Hua; Hu, Chao-Qun; Cai, Yi-Ming; Liu, Fang; Tang, Dong-Sheng

    2016-01-01

    In mammals, leptin is a peripheral satiety factor that inhibits feeding by regulating a variety of appetite-related hormones in the brain. However, most of the previous studies examining leptin in fish feeding were performed with mammalian leptins, which share very low sequence homologies with fish leptins. To elucidate the function and mechanism of endogenous fish leptins in feeding regulation, recombinant goldfish leptin-AI and leptin-AII were expressed in methylotrophic yeast and purified by immobilized metal ion affinity chromatography (IMAC). By intraperitoneal (IP) injection, both leptin-AI and leptin-AII were shown to inhibit the feeding behavior and to reduce the food consumption of goldfish in 2 h. In addition, co-treatment of leptin-AI or leptin-AII could block the feeding behavior and reduce the food consumption induced by neuropeptide Y (NPY) injection. High levels of leptin receptor (lepR) mRNA were detected in the hypothalamus, telencephalon, optic tectum and cerebellum of the goldfish brain. The appetite inhibitory effects of leptins were mediated by downregulating the mRNA levels of orexigenic NPY, agouti-related peptide (AgRP) and orexin and upregulating the mRNA levels of anorexigenic cocaine-amphetamine-regulated transcript (CART), cholecystokinin (CCK), melanin-concentrating hormone (MCH) and proopiomelanocortin (POMC) in different areas of the goldfish brain. Our study, as a whole, provides new insights into the functions and mechanisms of leptins in appetite control in a fish model. PMID:27249000

  14. The arcuate nucleus mediates GLP-1 receptor agonist liraglutide-dependent weight loss.

    PubMed

    Secher, Anna; Jelsing, Jacob; Baquero, Arian F; Hecksher-Sørensen, Jacob; Cowley, Michael A; Dalbøge, Louise S; Hansen, Gitte; Grove, Kevin L; Pyke, Charles; Raun, Kirsten; Schäffer, Lauge; Tang-Christensen, Mads; Verma, Saurabh; Witgen, Brent M; Vrang, Niels; Bjerre Knudsen, Lotte

    2014-10-01

    Liraglutide is a glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1) analog marketed for the treatment of type 2 diabetes. Besides lowering blood glucose, liraglutide also reduces body weight. It is not fully understood how liraglutide induces weight loss or to what degree liraglutide acts directly in the brain. Here, we determined that liraglutide does not activate GLP-1-producing neurons in the hindbrain, and liraglutide-dependent body weight reduction in rats was independent of GLP-1 receptors (GLP-1Rs) in the vagus nerve, area postrema, and paraventricular nucleus. Peripheral injection of fluorescently labeled liraglutide in mice revealed the presence of the drug in the circumventricular organs. Moreover, labeled liraglutide bound neurons within the arcuate nucleus (ARC) and other discrete sites in the hypothalamus. GLP-1R was necessary for liraglutide uptake in the brain, as liraglutide binding was not seen in Glp1r(-/-) mice. In the ARC, liraglutide was internalized in neurons expressing proopiomelanocortin (POMC) and cocaine- and amphetamine-regulated transcript (CART). Electrophysiological measurements of murine brain slices revealed that GLP-1 directly stimulates POMC/CART neurons and indirectly inhibits neurotransmission in neurons expressing neuropeptide Y (NPY) and agouti-related peptide (AgRP) via GABA-dependent signaling. Collectively, our findings indicate that the GLP-1R on POMC/CART-expressing ARC neurons likely mediates liraglutide-induced weight loss.

  15. Hypothalamic POMC Deficiency Improves Glucose Tolerance Despite Insulin Resistance by Increasing Glycosuria

    PubMed Central

    Adams, Jessica M.; Fagel, Brian; Lam, Daniel D.; Qi, Nathan; Rubinstein, Marcelo

    2016-01-01

    Hypothalamic proopiomelanocortin (POMC) is essential for the physiological regulation of energy balance; however, its role in glucose homeostasis remains less clear. We show that hypothalamic arcuate nucleus (Arc)POMC-deficient mice, which develop severe obesity and insulin resistance, unexpectedly exhibit improved glucose tolerance and remain protected from hyperglycemia. To explain these paradoxical phenotypes, we hypothesized that an insulin-independent pathway is responsible for the enhanced glucose tolerance. Indeed, the mutant mice demonstrated increased glucose effectiveness and exaggerated glycosuria relative to wild-type littermate controls at comparable blood glucose concentrations. Central administration of the melanocortin receptor agonist melanotan II in mutant mice reversed alterations in glucose tolerance and glycosuria, whereas, conversely, administration of the antagonist Agouti-related peptide (Agrp) to wild-type mice enhanced glucose tolerance. The glycosuria of ArcPOMC-deficient mice was due to decreased levels of renal GLUT 2 (rGLUT2) but not sodium–glucose cotransporter 2 and was associated with reduced renal catecholamine content. Epinephrine treatment abolished the genotype differences in glucose tolerance and rGLUT2 levels, suggesting that reduced renal sympathetic nervous system (SNS) activity is the underlying mechanism for the observed glycosuria and improved glucose tolerance in ArcPOMC-deficient mice. Therefore, the ArcPOMC-SNS-rGLUT2 axis is potentially an insulin-independent therapeutic target to control diabetes. PMID:26467632

  16. Hypothalamic POMC Deficiency Improves Glucose Tolerance Despite Insulin Resistance by Increasing Glycosuria.

    PubMed

    Chhabra, Kavaljit H; Adams, Jessica M; Fagel, Brian; Lam, Daniel D; Qi, Nathan; Rubinstein, Marcelo; Low, Malcolm J

    2016-03-01

    Hypothalamic proopiomelanocortin (POMC) is essential for the physiological regulation of energy balance; however, its role in glucose homeostasis remains less clear. We show that hypothalamic arcuate nucleus (Arc)POMC-deficient mice, which develop severe obesity and insulin resistance, unexpectedly exhibit improved glucose tolerance and remain protected from hyperglycemia. To explain these paradoxical phenotypes, we hypothesized that an insulin-independent pathway is responsible for the enhanced glucose tolerance. Indeed, the mutant mice demonstrated increased glucose effectiveness and exaggerated glycosuria relative to wild-type littermate controls at comparable blood glucose concentrations. Central administration of the melanocortin receptor agonist melanotan II in mutant mice reversed alterations in glucose tolerance and glycosuria, whereas, conversely, administration of the antagonist Agouti-related peptide (Agrp) to wild-type mice enhanced glucose tolerance. The glycosuria of ArcPOMC-deficient mice was due to decreased levels of renal GLUT 2 (rGLUT2) but not sodium-glucose cotransporter 2 and was associated with reduced renal catecholamine content. Epinephrine treatment abolished the genotype differences in glucose tolerance and rGLUT2 levels, suggesting that reduced renal sympathetic nervous system (SNS) activity is the underlying mechanism for the observed glycosuria and improved glucose tolerance in ArcPOMC-deficient mice. Therefore, the ArcPOMC-SNS-rGLUT2 axis is potentially an insulin-independent therapeutic target to control diabetes.

  17. Glucagon-Like Peptide-1 Receptor Agonists (GLP-1RAs) in the Brain-Adipocyte Axis.

    PubMed

    Geloneze, Bruno; de Lima-Júnior, José Carlos; Velloso, Lício A

    2017-02-23

    The complexity of neural circuits that control food intake and energy balance in the hypothalamic nuclei explains some of the constraints involved in the prevention and treatment of obesity. Two major neuronal populations present in the arcuate nucleus control caloric intake and energy expenditure: one population co-expresses orexigenic agouti-related peptide (AgRP) and neuropeptide Y and the other expresses the anorexigenic anorectic neuropeptides proopiomelanocortin and cocaine- and amphetamine-regulated transcript (POMC/CART). In addition to integrating signals from neurotransmitters and hormones, the hypothalamic systems that regulate energy homeostasis are affected by nutrients. Fat-rich diets, for instance, elicit hypothalamic inflammation (reactive activation and proliferation of microglia, a condition named gliosis). This process generates resistance to the anorexigenic hormones leptin and insulin, contributing to the genesis of obesity. Glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1) receptor agonists (GLP-1RAs) have increasingly been used to treat type 2 diabetes mellitus. One compound (liraglutide) was recently approved for the treatment of obesity. Although most studies suggest that GLP-1RAs promote weight loss mainly due to their inhibitory effect on food intake, other central effects that have been described for native GLP-1 and some GLP-1RAs in rodents and humans encourage future clinical trials to explore additional mechanisms that potentially underlie the beneficial effects observed with this drug class. In this article we review the most relevant data exploring the mechanisms involved in the effects of GLP-1RAs in the brain-adipocyte axis.

  18. Central inhibitory effects on feeding induced by the adipo-myokine irisin.

    PubMed

    Ferrante, Claudio; Orlando, Giustino; Recinella, Lucia; Leone, Sheila; Chiavaroli, Annalisa; Di Nisio, Chiara; Shohreh, Rugia; Manippa, Fabio; Ricciuti, Adriana; Vacca, Michele; Brunetti, Luigi

    2016-11-15

    Irisin, the soluble secreted form of fibronectin type III domain containing 5 (FNDC5)-cleaved product, is a recently identified adipo-myokine that has been indicated as a possible link between physical exercise and energetic homeostasis. The co-localization of irisin with neuropeptide Y in hypothalamic sections of paraventricular nucleus, which receives NPY/AgRP projections from the arcuate nucleus, suggests a possible role of irisin in the central regulation of energy balance. In this context, in the present work we studied the effects of intra-hypothalamic irisin (1μl, 50-200nmol/l) administration on feeding and orexigenic [agouti-related peptide (AgRP), neuropeptide Y (NPY) and orexin-A] and anorexigenic [cocaine and amphetamine-regulated transcript (CART) and proopiomelanocortin (POMC)] peptides in male Sprague-Dawley rats. Furthermore, we evaluated the effects of irisin on hypothalamic dopamine (DA), norepinephrine (NE) and serotonin (5-hydroxytryptamine, 5-HT) concentrations and plasma NE levels. Compared to vehicle, irisin injected rats showed decreased food intake, possibly mediated by stimulated CART and POMC and inhibited DA, NE and orexin-A, in the hypothalamus. We also found increased plasma NE levels, supporting a role for sympathetic nervous system stimulation in mediating increased oxygen consumption by irisin.

  19. Hunger-Driven Motivational State Competition.

    PubMed

    Burnett, C Joseph; Li, Chia; Webber, Emily; Tsaousidou, Eva; Xue, Stephen Y; Brüning, Jens C; Krashes, Michael J

    2016-10-05

    Behavioral choice is ubiquitous in the animal kingdom and is central to goal-oriented behavior. Hypothalamic Agouti-related peptide (AgRP) neurons are critical regulators of appetite. Hungry animals, bombarded by multiple sensory stimuli, are known to modify their behavior during times of caloric need, rapidly adapting to a consistently changing environment. Utilizing ARC(AgRP) neurons as an entry point, we analyzed the hierarchical position of hunger related to rival drive states. Employing a battery of behavioral assays, we found that hunger significantly increases its capacity to suppress competing motivational systems, such as thirst, anxiety-related behavior, innate fear, and social interactions, often only when food is accessible. Furthermore, real-time monitoring of ARC(AgRP) activity revealed time-locked responses to conspecific investigation in addition to food presentation, further establishing that, even at the level of ARC(AgRP) neurons, choices are remarkably flexible computations, integrating internal state, external factors, and anticipated yield. VIDEO ABSTRACT.

  20. A Small Potassium Current in AgRP/NPY Neurons Regulates Feeding Behavior and Energy Metabolism.

    PubMed

    He, Yanlin; Shu, Gang; Yang, Yongjie; Xu, Pingwen; Xia, Yan; Wang, Chunmei; Saito, Kenji; Hinton, Antentor; Yan, Xiaofeng; Liu, Chen; Wu, Qi; Tong, Qingchun; Xu, Yong

    2016-11-08

    Neurons that co-express agouti-related peptide (AgRP) and neuropeptide Y (NPY) are indispensable for normal feeding behavior. Firing activities of AgRP/NPY neurons are dynamically regulated by energy status and coordinate appropriate feeding behavior to meet nutritional demands. However, intrinsic mechanisms that regulate AgRP/NPY neural activities during the fed-to-fasted transition are not fully understood. We found that AgRP/NPY neurons in satiated mice express high levels of the small-conductance calcium-activated potassium channel 3 (SK3) and are inhibited by SK3-mediated potassium currents; on the other hand, food deprivation suppresses SK3 expression in AgRP/NPY neurons, and the decreased SK3-mediated currents contribute to fasting-induced activation of these neurons. Genetic mutation of SK3 specifically in AgRP/NPY neurons leads to increased sensitivity to diet-induced obesity, associated with chronic hyperphagia and decreased energy expenditure. Our results identify SK3 as a key intrinsic mediator that coordinates nutritional status with AgRP/NPY neural activities and animals' feeding behavior and energy metabolism.

  1. Melanocortin-3 receptors expressed in Nkx2.1(+ve) neurons are sufficient for controlling appetitive responses to hypocaloric conditioning

    PubMed Central

    Girardet, Clémence; Mavrikaki, Maria M.; Stevens, Joseph R.; Miller, Courtney A.; Marks, Daniel L.; Butler, Andrew A.

    2017-01-01

    Melanocortin-3 receptors (MC3R) have a contextual role in appetite control that is amplified with hypocaloric conditioning. C57BL/6J (B6) mice subjected to hypocaloric feeding schedules (HFS) exhibit compulsive behavioral responses involving food anticipatory activity (FAA) and caloric loading following food access. These homeostatic responses to calorie-poor environs are attenuated in B6 mice in which Mc3r transcription is suppressed by a lox-stop-lox sequence in the 5’UTR (Mc3rTB/TB). Here, we report that optimization of caloric loading in B6 mice subject to HFS, characterized by increased meal size and duration, is not observed in Mc3rTB/TB mice. Analysis of hypothalamic and neuroendocrine responses to HFS throughout the light-dark cycle suggests uncoupling of hypothalamic responses involving appetite-stimulating fasting-responsive hypothalamic neurons expressing agouti-related peptide (AgRP) and neuropeptide Y (Npy). Rescuing Mc3rs expression in Nkx2.1(+ve) neurons is sufficient to restore normal hypothalamic responses to negative energy balance. In addition, Mc3rs expressed in Nkx2.1(+ve) neurons are also sufficient to restore FAA and caloric loading of B6 mice subjected to HFS. In summary, MC3Rs expressed in Nkx2.1(+ve) neurons are sufficient to coordinate hypothalamic response and expression of compulsive behavioral responses involving meal anticipation and consumption of large meals during situations of prolonged negative energy balance. PMID:28294152

  2. Length, protein protein interactions, and complexity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tan, Taison; Frenkel, Daan; Gupta, Vishal; Deem, Michael W.

    2005-05-01

    The evolutionary reason for the increase in gene length from archaea to prokaryotes to eukaryotes observed in large-scale genome sequencing efforts has been unclear. We propose here that the increasing complexity of protein-protein interactions has driven the selection of longer proteins, as they are more able to distinguish among a larger number of distinct interactions due to their greater average surface area. Annotated protein sequences available from the SWISS-PROT database were analyzed for 13 eukaryotes, eight bacteria, and two archaea species. The number of subcellular locations to which each protein is associated is used as a measure of the number of interactions to which a protein participates. Two databases of yeast protein-protein interactions were used as another measure of the number of interactions to which each S. cerevisiae protein participates. Protein length is shown to correlate with both number of subcellular locations to which a protein is associated and number of interactions as measured by yeast two-hybrid experiments. Protein length is also shown to correlate with the probability that the protein is encoded by an essential gene. Interestingly, average protein length and number of subcellular locations are not significantly different between all human proteins and protein targets of known, marketed drugs. Increased protein length appears to be a significant mechanism by which the increasing complexity of protein-protein interaction networks is accommodated within the natural evolution of species. Consideration of protein length may be a valuable tool in drug design, one that predicts different strategies for inhibiting interactions in aberrant and normal pathways.

  3. EDITORIAL: Precision proteins Precision proteins

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Demming, Anna

    2010-06-01

    Since the birth of modern day medicine, during the times of Hippocrates in ancient Greece, the profession has developed from the rudimentary classification of disease into a rigorous science with an inspiring capability to treat and cure. Scientific methodology has distilled clinical diagnostic tools from the early arts of prognosis, which used to rely as much on revelation and prophecy, as intuition and judgement [1]. Over the past decade, research into the interactions between proteins and nanosystems has provided some ingenious and apt techniques for delving into the intricacies of anatomical systems. In vivo biosensing has emerged as a vibrant field of research, as much of medical diagnosis relies on the detection of substances or an imbalance in the chemicals in the body. The inherent properties of nanoscale structures, such as cantilevers, make them well suited to biosensing applications that demand the detection of molecules at very low concentrations. Measurable deflections in cantilevers functionalised with antibodies provide quantitative indicators of the presence of specific antigens when the two react. Such developments have roused mounting interest in the interactions of proteins with nanostructures, such as carbon nanotubes [3], which have demonstrated great potential as generic biomarkers. Plasmonic properties are also being exploited in sensing applications, such as the molecular sentinel recently devised by researchers in the US. The device uses the plasmonic properties of a silver nanoparticle linked to a Raman labelled hairpin DNA probe to signal changes in the probe geometry resulting from interactions with substances in the environment. Success stories so far include the detection of two specific genes associated with breast cancer [4]. A greater understanding of how RNA interference regulates gene expression has highlighted the potential of using this natural process as another agent for combating disease in personalized medicine. However, the

  4. Shotgun protein sequencing.

    SciTech Connect

    Faulon, Jean-Loup Michel; Heffelfinger, Grant S.

    2009-06-01

    A novel experimental and computational technique based on multiple enzymatic digestion of a protein or protein mixture that reconstructs protein sequences from sequences of overlapping peptides is described in this SAND report. This approach, analogous to shotgun sequencing of DNA, is to be used to sequence alternative spliced proteins, to identify post-translational modifications, and to sequence genetically engineered proteins.

  5. Protein Crystal Based Nanomaterials

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bell, Jeffrey A.; VanRoey, Patrick

    2001-01-01

    This is the final report on a NASA Grant. It concerns a description of work done, which includes: (1) Protein crystals cross-linked to form fibers; (2) Engineering of protein to favor crystallization; (3) Better knowledge-based potentials for protein-protein contacts; (4) Simulation of protein crystallization.

  6. Alterations in the hypothalamic melanocortin pathway in amyotrophic lateral sclerosis.

    PubMed

    Vercruysse, Pauline; Sinniger, Jérôme; El Oussini, Hajer; Scekic-Zahirovic, Jelena; Dieterlé, Stéphane; Dengler, Reinhard; Meyer, Thomas; Zierz, Stephan; Kassubek, Jan; Fischer, Wilhelm; Dreyhaupt, Jens; Grehl, Torsten; Hermann, Andreas; Grosskreutz, Julian; Witting, Anke; Van Den Bosch, Ludo; Spreux-Varoquaux, Odile; Ludolph, Albert C; Dupuis, Luc

    2016-04-01

    Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, the most common adult-onset motor neuron disease, leads to death within 3 to 5 years after onset. Beyond progressive motor impairment, patients with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis suffer from major defects in energy metabolism, such as weight loss, which are well correlated with survival. Indeed, nutritional intervention targeting weight loss might improve survival of patients. However, the neural mechanisms underlying metabolic impairment in patients with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis remain elusive, in particular due to the lack of longitudinal studies. Here we took advantage of samples collected during the clinical trial of pioglitazone (GERP-ALS), and characterized longitudinally energy metabolism of patients with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis in response to pioglitazone, a drug with well-characterized metabolic effects. As expected, pioglitazone decreased glycaemia, decreased liver enzymes and increased circulating adiponectin in patients with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, showing its efficacy in the periphery. However, pioglitazone did not increase body weight of patients with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis independently of bulbar involvement. As pioglitazone increases body weight through a direct inhibition of the hypothalamic melanocortin system, we studied hypothalamic neurons producing proopiomelanocortin (POMC) and the endogenous melanocortin inhibitor agouti-related peptide (AGRP), in mice expressing amyotrophic lateral sclerosis-linked mutant SOD1(G86R). We observed lower Pomc but higher Agrp mRNA levels in the hypothalamus of presymptomatic SOD1(G86R) mice. Consistently, numbers of POMC-positive neurons were decreased, whereas AGRP fibre density was elevated in the hypothalamic arcuate nucleus of SOD1(G86R) mice. Consistent with a defect in the hypothalamic melanocortin system, food intake after short term fasting was increased in SOD1(G86R) mice. Importantly, these findings were replicated in two other amyotrophic

  7. Protein-losing enteropathy

    MedlinePlus

    ... this page: //medlineplus.gov/ency/article/007338.htm Protein-losing enteropathy To use the sharing features on this page, please enable JavaScript. Protein-losing enteropathy is an abnormal loss of protein ...

  8. Protein in diet

    MedlinePlus

    ... basic structure of protein is a chain of amino acids. You need protein in your diet to help ... Protein foods are broken down into parts called amino acids during digestion. The human body needs a number ...

  9. Protein splicing: selfish genes invade cellular proteins.

    PubMed

    Neff, N F

    1993-12-01

    Protein splicing is a series of enzymatic events involving intramolecular protein breakage, rejoining and intron homing, in which introns are able to promote the recombinative transposition of their own coding sequences. Eukaryotic and prokaryotic spliced proteins have conserved similar gene structure, but little amino acid identity. The genes coding for these spliced proteins contain internal in-frame introns that encode polypeptides that apparently self-excise from the resulting host protein sequences. Excision of the 'protein intron' is coupled with joining of the two flanking protein regions encoded by exons of the host gene. Some introns of this type encode DNA endonucleases, related to Group I RNA intron gene products, that stimulate gene conversion and self-transmission.

  10. PREFACE: Protein protein interactions: principles and predictions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nussinov, Ruth; Tsai, Chung-Jung

    2005-06-01

    Proteins are the `workhorses' of the cell. Their roles span functions as diverse as being molecular machines and signalling. They carry out catalytic reactions, transport, form viral capsids, traverse membranes and form regulated channels, transmit information from DNA to RNA, making possible the synthesis of new proteins, and they are responsible for the degradation of unnecessary proteins and nucleic acids. They are the vehicles of the immune response and are responsible for viral entry into the cell. Given their importance, considerable effort has been centered on the prediction of protein function. A prime way to do this is through identification of binding partners. If the function of at least one of the components with which the protein interacts is known, that should let us assign its function(s) and the pathway(s) in which it plays a role. This holds since the vast majority of their chores in the living cell involve protein-protein interactions. Hence, through the intricate network of these interactions we can map cellular pathways, their interconnectivities and their dynamic regulation. Their identification is at the heart of functional genomics; their prediction is crucial for drug discovery. Knowledge of the pathway, its topology, length, and dynamics may provide useful information for forecasting side effects. The goal of predicting protein-protein interactions is daunting. Some associations are obligatory, others are continuously forming and dissociating. In principle, from the physical standpoint, any two proteins can interact, but under what conditions and at which strength? The principles of protein-protein interactions are general: the non-covalent interactions of two proteins are largely the outcome of the hydrophobic effect, which drives the interactions. In addition, hydrogen bonds and electrostatic interactions play important roles. Thus, many of the interactions observed in vitro are the outcome of experimental overexpression. Protein disorder

  11. Protein sequence comparison and protein evolution

    SciTech Connect

    Pearson, W.R.

    1995-12-31

    This tutorial was one of eight tutorials selected to be presented at the Third International Conference on Intelligent Systems for Molecular Biology which was held in the United Kingdom from July 16 to 19, 1995. This tutorial examines how the information conserved during the evolution of a protein molecule can be used to infer reliably homology, and thus a shared proteinfold and possibly a shared active site or function. The authors start by reviewing a geological/evolutionary time scale. Next they look at the evolution of several protein families. During the tutorial, these families will be used to demonstrate that homologous protein ancestry can be inferred with confidence. They also examine different modes of protein evolution and consider some hypotheses that have been presented to explain the very earliest events in protein evolution. The next part of the tutorial will examine the technical aspects of protein sequence comparison. Both optimal and heuristic algorithms and their associated parameters that are used to characterize protein sequence similarities are discussed. Perhaps more importantly, they survey the statistics of local similarity scores, and how these statistics can both be used to improve the selectivity of a search and to evaluate the significance of a match. They them examine distantly related members of three protein families, the serine proteases, the glutathione transferases, and the G-protein-coupled receptors (GCRs). Finally, the discuss how sequence similarity can be used to examine internal repeated or mosaic structures in proteins.

  12. Whey protein fractionation

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Concentrated whey protein products from cheese whey, such as whey protein concentrate (WPC) and whey protein isolate (WPI), contain more than seven different types of proteins: alpha-lactalbumin (alpha-LA), beta-lactoglobulin (beta-LG), bovine serum albumin (BSA), immunoglobulins (Igs), lactoferrin ...

  13. Protein- protein interaction detection system using fluorescent protein microdomains

    DOEpatents

    Waldo, Geoffrey S.; Cabantous, Stephanie

    2010-02-23

    The invention provides a protein labeling and interaction detection system based on engineered fragments of fluorescent and chromophoric proteins that require fused interacting polypeptides to drive the association of the fragments, and further are soluble and stable, and do not change the solubility of polypeptides to which they are fused. In one embodiment, a test protein X is fused to a sixteen amino acid fragment of GFP (.beta.-strand 10, amino acids 198-214), engineered to not perturb fusion protein solubility. A second test protein Y is fused to a sixteen amino acid fragment of GFP (.beta.-strand 11, amino acids 215-230), engineered to not perturb fusion protein solubility. When X and Y interact, they bring the GFP strands into proximity, and are detected by complementation with a third GFP fragment consisting of GFP amino acids 1-198 (strands 1-9). When GFP strands 10 and 11 are held together by interaction of protein X and Y, they spontaneous association with GFP strands 1-9, resulting in structural complementation, folding, and concomitant GFP fluorescence.

  14. Molecular modelling of protein-protein/protein-solvent interactions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Luchko, Tyler

    The inner workings of individual cells are based on intricate networks of protein-protein interactions. However, each of these individual protein interactions requires a complex physical interaction between proteins and their aqueous environment at the atomic scale. In this thesis, molecular dynamics simulations are used in three theoretical studies to gain insight at the atomic scale about protein hydration, protein structure and tubulin-tubulin (protein-protein) interactions, as found in microtubules. Also presented, in a fourth project, is a molecular model of solvation coupled with the Amber molecular modelling package, to facilitate further studies without the need of explicitly modelled water. Basic properties of a minimally solvated protein were calculated through an extended study of myoglobin hydration with explicit solvent, directly investigating water and protein polarization. Results indicate a close correlation between polarization of both water and protein and the onset of protein function. The methodology of explicit solvent molecular dynamics was further used to study tubulin and microtubules. Extensive conformational sampling of the carboxy-terminal tails of 8-tubulin was performed via replica exchange molecular dynamics, allowing the characterisation of the flexibility, secondary structure and binding domains of the C-terminal tails through statistical analysis methods. Mechanical properties of tubulin and microtubules were calculated with adaptive biasing force molecular dynamics. The function of the M-loop in microtubule stability was demonstrated in these simulations. The flexibility of this loop allowed constant contacts between the protofilaments to be maintained during simulations while the smooth deformation provided a spring-like restoring force. Additionally, calculating the free energy profile between the straight and bent tubulin configurations was used to test the proposed conformational change in tubulin, thought to cause microtubule

  15. Surface Mediated Protein Disaggregation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Radhakrishna, Mithun; Kumar, Sanat K.

    2014-03-01

    Preventing protein aggregation is of both biological and industrial importance. Biologically these aggregates are known to cause amyloid type diseases like Alzheimer's and Parkinson's disease. Protein aggregation leads to reduced activity of the enzymes in industrial applications. Inter-protein interactions between the hydrophobic residues of the protein are known to be the major driving force for protein aggregation. In the current paper we show how surface chemistry and curvature can be tuned to mitigate these inter-protein interactions. Our results calculated in the framework of the Hydrophobic-Polar (HP) lattice model show that, inter-protein interactions can be drastically reduced by increasing the surface hydrophobicity to a critical value corresponding to the adsorption transition of the protein. At this value of surface hydrophobicity, proteins lose inter-protein contacts to gain surface contacts and thus the surface helps in reducing the inter-protein interactions. Further, we show that the adsorption of the proteins inside hydrophobic pores of optimal sizes are most efficient both in reducing inter-protein contacts and simultaneously retaining most of the native-contacts due to strong protein-surface interactions coupled with stabilization due to the confinement. Department of Energy (Grant No DE-FG02-11ER46811).

  16. Physics of protein motility and motor proteins

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kolomeisky, Anatoly B.

    2013-09-01

    Motor proteins are enzymatic molecules that transform chemical energy into mechanical motion and work. They are critically important for supporting various cellular activities and functions. In the last 15 years significant progress in understanding the functioning of motor proteins has been achieved due to revolutionary breakthroughs in single-molecule experimental techniques and strong advances in theoretical modelling. However, microscopic mechanisms of protein motility are still not well explained, and the collective efforts of many scientists are needed in order to solve these complex problems. In this special section the reader will find the latest advances on the difficult road to mapping motor proteins dynamics in various systems. Recent experimental developments have allowed researchers to monitor and to influence the activity of single motor proteins with a high spatial and temporal resolution. It has stimulated significant theoretical efforts to understand the non-equilibrium nature of protein motility phenomena. The latest results from all these advances are presented and discussed in this special section. We would like to thank the scientists from all over the world who have reported their latest research results for this special section. We are also grateful to the staff and editors of Journal of Physics: Condensed Matter for their invaluable help in handling all the administrative and refereeing activities. The field of motor proteins and protein motility is fast moving, and we hope that this collection of articles will be a useful source of information in this highly interdisciplinary area. Physics of protein motility and motor proteins contents Physics of protein motility and motor proteinsAnatoly B Kolomeisky Identification of unique interactions between the flexible linker and the RecA-like domains of DEAD-box helicase Mss116 Yuan Zhang, Mirkó Palla, Andrew Sun and Jung-Chi Liao The load dependence of the physical properties of a molecular motor

  17. Protein C blood test

    MedlinePlus

    ... a normal substance in the body that prevents blood clotting. A blood test can be done to see ... history of blood clots. Protein C helps control blood clotting. A lack of this protein or problem with ...

  18. Protein S blood test

    MedlinePlus

    ... a normal substance in your body that prevents blood clotting. A blood test can be done to see ... family history of blood clots. Protein S helps control blood clotting. A lack of this protein or problem with ...

  19. Learning about Proteins

    MedlinePlus

    ... body, and protecting you from disease. All About Amino Acids When you eat foods that contain protein, the ... called amino (say: uh-MEE-no) acids. The amino acids then can be reused to make the proteins ...

  20. Modeling Protein Self Assembly

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Baker, William P.; Jones, Carleton Buck; Hull, Elizabeth

    2004-01-01

    Understanding the structure and function of proteins is an important part of the standards-based science curriculum. Proteins serve vital roles within the cell and malfunctions in protein self assembly are implicated in degenerative diseases. Experience indicates that this topic is a difficult one for many students. We have found that the concept…

  1. CSF total protein

    MedlinePlus

    CSF total protein is a test to determine the amount of protein in your spinal fluid, also called cerebrospinal fluid (CSF). ... The normal protein range varies from lab to lab, but is typically about 15 to 60 milligrams per deciliter (mg/dL) ...

  2. Modeling Protein Domain Function

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Baker, William P.; Jones, Carleton "Buck"; Hull, Elizabeth

    2007-01-01

    This simple but effective laboratory exercise helps students understand the concept of protein domain function. They use foam beads, Styrofoam craft balls, and pipe cleaners to explore how domains within protein active sites interact to form a functional protein. The activity allows students to gain content mastery and an understanding of the…

  3. Destabilized bioluminescent proteins

    DOEpatents

    Allen, Michael S.; Rakesh, Gupta; Gary, Sayler S.

    2007-07-31

    Purified nucleic acids, vectors and cells containing a gene cassette encoding at least one modified bioluminescent protein, wherein the modification includes the addition of a peptide sequence. The duration of bioluminescence emitted by the modified bioluminescent protein is shorter than the duration of bioluminescence emitted by an unmodified form of the bioluminescent protein.

  4. Texturized dairy proteins

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Dairy proteins are amenable to structural modifications induced by high temperature, shear and moisture; in particular, whey proteins can change conformation to new unfolded states. The change in protein state is a basis for creating new foods. The dairy products, nonfat dried milk (NDM), whey prote...

  5. Overview of Protein Microarrays

    PubMed Central

    Reymond Sutandy, FX; Qian, Jiang; Chen, Chien-Sheng; Zhu, Heng

    2013-01-01

    Protein microarray is an emerging technology that provides a versatile platform for characterization of hundreds of thousands of proteins in a highly parallel and high-throughput way. Two major classes of protein microarrays are defined to describe their applications: analytical and functional protein microarrays. In addition, tissue or cell lysates can also be fractionated and spotted on a slide to form a reverse-phase protein microarray. While the fabrication technology is maturing, applications of protein microarrays, especially functional protein microarrays, have flourished during the past decade. Here, we will first review recent advances in the protein microarray technologies, and then present a series of examples to illustrate the applications of analytical and functional protein microarrays in both basic and clinical research. The research areas will include detection of various binding properties of proteins, study of protein posttranslational modifications, analysis of host-microbe interactions, profiling antibody specificity, and identification of biomarkers in autoimmune diseases. As a powerful technology platform, it would not be surprising if protein microarrays will become one of the leading technologies in proteomic and diagnostic fields in the next decade. PMID:23546620

  6. The E5 Proteins

    PubMed Central

    DiMaio, Daniel; Petti, Lisa

    2013-01-01

    The E5 proteins are short transmembrane proteins encoded by many animal and human papillomaviruses. These proteins display transforming activity in cultured cells and animals, and they presumably also play a role in the productive virus life cycle. The E5 proteins are thought to act by modulating the activity of cellular proteins. Here, we describe the biological activities of the best-studied E5 proteins and discuss the evidence implicating specific protein targets and pathways in mediating these activities. The primary target of the 44-amino acid BPV1 E5 is the PDGF β receptor, whereas the EGF receptor appears to be an important target of the 83-amino acid HPV16 E5 protein. Both E5 proteins also bind to the vacuolar ATPase and affect MHC class I expression and cell-cell communication. Continued studies of the E5 proteins will elucidate important aspects of transmembrane protein-protein interactions, cellular signal transduction, cell biology, virus replication, and tumorigenesis. PMID:23731971

  7. Protopia: a protein-protein interaction tool

    PubMed Central

    Real-Chicharro, Alejandro; Ruiz-Mostazo, Iván; Navas-Delgado, Ismael; Kerzazi, Amine; Chniber, Othmane; Sánchez-Jiménez, Francisca; Medina, Miguel Ángel; Aldana-Montes, José F

    2009-01-01

    Background Protein-protein interactions can be considered the basic skeleton for living organism self-organization and homeostasis. Impressive quantities of experimental data are being obtained and computational tools are essential to integrate and to organize this information. This paper presents Protopia, a biological tool that offers a way of searching for proteins and their interactions in different Protein Interaction Web Databases, as a part of a multidisciplinary initiative of our institution for the integration of biological data . Results The tool accesses the different Databases (at present, the free version of Transfac, DIP, Hprd, Int-Act and iHop), and results are expressed with biological protein names or databases codes and can be depicted as a vector or a matrix. They can be represented and handled interactively as an organic graph. Comparison among databases is carried out using the Uniprot codes annotated for each protein. Conclusion The tool locates and integrates the current information stored in the aforementioned databases, and redundancies among them are detected. Results are compatible with the most important network analysers, so that they can be compared and analysed by other world-wide known tools and platforms. The visualization possibilities help to attain this goal and they are especially interesting for handling multiple-step or complex networks. PMID:19828077

  8. Protein-protein interactions in multienzyme megasynthetases.

    PubMed

    Weissman, Kira J; Müller, Rolf

    2008-04-14

    The multienzyme polyketide synthases (PKSs), nonribosomal polypeptide synthetases (NRPSs), and their hybrids are responsible for the construction in bacteria of numerous natural products of clinical value. These systems generate high structural complexity by using a simple biosynthetic logic--that of the assembly line. Each of the individual steps in building the metabolites is designated to an independently folded domain within gigantic polypeptides. The domains are clustered into functional modules, and the modules are strung out along the proteins in the order in which they act. Every metabolite results, therefore, from the successive action of up to 100 individual catalysts. Despite the conceptual simplicity of this division-of-labor organization, we are only beginning to decipher the molecular details of the numerous protein-protein interactions that support assembly-line biosynthesis, and which are critical to attempts to re-engineer these systems as a tool in drug discovery. This review aims to summarize the state of knowledge about several aspects of protein-protein interactions, including current architectural models for PKS and NRPS systems, the central role of carrier proteins, and the structural basis for intersubunit recognition.

  9. Highly thermostable fluorescent proteins

    DOEpatents

    Bradbury, Andrew M [Santa Fe, NM; Waldo, Geoffrey S [Santa Fe, NM; Kiss, Csaba [Los Alamos, NM

    2012-05-01

    Thermostable fluorescent proteins (TSFPs), methods for generating these and other stability-enhanced proteins, polynucleotides encoding such proteins, and assays and method for using the TSFPs and TSFP-encoding nucleic acid molecules are provided. The TSFPs of the invention show extremely enhanced levels of stability and thermotolerance. In one case, for example, a TSFP of the invention is so stable it can be heated to 99.degree. C. for short periods of time without denaturing, and retains 85% of its fluorescence when heated to 80.degree. C. for several minutes. The invention also provides a method for generating stability-enhanced variants of a protein, including but not limited to fluorescent proteins.

  10. Highly thermostable fluorescent proteins

    DOEpatents

    Bradbury, Andrew M.; Waldo, Geoffrey S.; Kiss, Csaba

    2011-03-22

    Thermostable fluorescent proteins (TSFPs), methods for generating these and other stability-enhanced proteins, polynucleotides encoding such proteins, and assays and method for using the TSFPs and TSFP-encoding nucleic acid molecules are provided. The TSFPs of the invention show extremely enhanced levels of stability and thermotolerance. In one case, for example, a TSFP of the invention is so stable it can be heated to 99.degree. C. for short periods of time without denaturing, and retains 85% of its fluorescence when heated to 80.degree. C. for several minutes. The invention also provides a method for generating stability-enhanced variants of a protein, including but not limited to fluorescent proteins.

  11. Highly thermostable fluorescent proteins

    DOEpatents

    Bradbury, Andrew M [Santa Fe, NM; Waldo, Geoffrey S [Santa Fe, NM; Kiss, Csaba [Los Alamos, NM

    2011-11-29

    Thermostable fluorescent proteins (TSFPs), methods for generating these and other stability-enhanced proteins, polynucleotides encoding such proteins, and assays and method for using the TSFPs and TSFP-encoding nucleic acid molecules are provided. The TSFPs of the invention show extremely enhanced levels of stability and thermotolerance. In one case, for example, a TSFP of the invention is so stable it can be heated to 99.degree. C. for short periods of time without denaturing, and retains 85% of its fluorescence when heated to 80.degree. C. for several minutes. The invention also provides a method for generating stability-enhanced variants of a protein, including but not limited to fluorescent proteins.

  12. Protein crystallization with paper

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Matsuoka, Miki; Kakinouchi, Keisuke; Adachi, Hiroaki; Maruyama, Mihoko; Sugiyama, Shigeru; Sano, Satoshi; Yoshikawa, Hiroshi Y.; Takahashi, Yoshinori; Yoshimura, Masashi; Matsumura, Hiroyoshi; Murakami, Satoshi; Inoue, Tsuyoshi; Mori, Yusuke; Takano, Kazufumi

    2016-05-01

    We developed a new protein crystallization method that incorporates paper. A small piece of paper, such as facial tissue or KimWipes, was added to a drop of protein solution in the traditional sitting drop vapor diffusion technique, and protein crystals grew by incorporating paper. By this method, we achieved the growth of protein crystals with reducing osmotic shock. Because the technique is very simple and the materials are easy to obtain, this method will come into wide use for protein crystallization. In the future, it could be applied to nanoliter-scale crystallization screening on a paper sheet such as in inkjet printing.

  13. [Atypical ubiquitination of proteins].

    PubMed

    Buneeva, O A; Medvedev, A E

    2016-07-01

    Ubiquitination is a type of posttranslational modification of intracellular proteins characterized by covalent attachment of one (monoubiquitination) or several (polyubiquitination) of ubiquitin molecules to target proteins. In the case of polyubiquitination, linear or branched polyubiquitin chains are formed. Their formation involves various lysine residues of monomeric ubiquitin. The best studied is Lys48-polyubiquitination, which targets proteins for proteasomal degradation. In this review we have considered examples of so-called atypical polyubiquitination, which mainly involves other lysine residues (Lys6, Lys11, Lys27, Lys29, Lys33, Lys63) and also N-terminal methionine. The considered examples convincingly demonstrate that polyubiquitination of proteins not necessarily targets proteins for their proteolytic degradation in proteasomes. Atypically polyubiquitinated proteins are involved in regulation of various processes and altered polyubiquitination of certain proteins is crucial for development of serious diseases.

  14. Protein and vegetarian diets.

    PubMed

    Marsh, Kate A; Munn, Elizabeth A; Baines, Surinder K

    2013-08-19

    A vegetarian diet can easily meet human dietary protein requirements as long as energy needs are met and a variety of foods are eaten. Vegetarians should obtain protein from a variety of plant sources, including legumes, soy products, grains, nuts and seeds. Eggs and dairy products also provide protein for those following a lacto-ovo-vegetarian diet. There is no need to consciously combine different plant proteins at each meal as long as a variety of foods are eaten from day to day, because the human body maintains a pool of amino acids which can be used to complement dietary protein. The consumption of plant proteins rather than animal proteins by vegetarians may contribute to their reduced risk of chronic diseases such as diabetes and heart disease.

  15. Protein solubility modeling

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Agena, S. M.; Pusey, M. L.; Bogle, I. D.

    1999-01-01

    A thermodynamic framework (UNIQUAC model with temperature dependent parameters) is applied to model the salt-induced protein crystallization equilibrium, i.e., protein solubility. The framework introduces a term for the solubility product describing protein transfer between the liquid and solid phase and a term for the solution behavior describing deviation from ideal solution. Protein solubility is modeled as a function of salt concentration and temperature for a four-component system consisting of a protein, pseudo solvent (water and buffer), cation, and anion (salt). Two different systems, lysozyme with sodium chloride and concanavalin A with ammonium sulfate, are investigated. Comparison of the modeled and experimental protein solubility data results in an average root mean square deviation of 5.8%, demonstrating that the model closely follows the experimental behavior. Model calculations and model parameters are reviewed to examine the model and protein crystallization process. Copyright 1999 John Wiley & Sons, Inc.

  16. Predictions of Protein-Protein Interfaces within Membrane Protein Complexes

    PubMed Central

    Asadabadi, Ebrahim Barzegari; Abdolmaleki, Parviz

    2013-01-01

    Background Prediction of interaction sites within the membrane protein complexes using the sequence data is of a great importance, because it would find applications in modification of molecules transport through membrane, signaling pathways and drug targets of many diseases. Nevertheless, it has gained little attention from the protein structural bioinformatics community. Methods In this study, a wide variety of prediction and classification tools were applied to distinguish the residues at the interfaces of membrane proteins from those not in the interfaces. Results The tuned SVM model achieved the high accuracy of 86.95% and the AUC of 0.812 which outperforms the results of the only previous similar study. Nevertheless, prediction performances obtained using most employed models cannot be used in applied fields and needs more effort to improve. Conclusion Considering the variety of the applied tools in this study, the present investigation could be a good starting point to develop more efficient tools to predict the membrane protein interaction site residues. PMID:23919118

  17. Modeling Protein Expression and Protein Signaling Pathways

    PubMed Central

    Telesca, Donatello; Müller, Peter; Kornblau, Steven M.; Suchard, Marc A.; Ji, Yuan

    2015-01-01

    High-throughput functional proteomic technologies provide a way to quantify the expression of proteins of interest. Statistical inference centers on identifying the activation state of proteins and their patterns of molecular interaction formalized as dependence structure. Inference on dependence structure is particularly important when proteins are selected because they are part of a common molecular pathway. In that case, inference on dependence structure reveals properties of the underlying pathway. We propose a probability model that represents molecular interactions at the level of hidden binary latent variables that can be interpreted as indicators for active versus inactive states of the proteins. The proposed approach exploits available expert knowledge about the target pathway to define an informative prior on the hidden conditional dependence structure. An important feature of this prior is that it provides an instrument to explicitly anchor the model space to a set of interactions of interest, favoring a local search approach to model determination. We apply our model to reverse-phase protein array data from a study on acute myeloid leukemia. Our inference identifies relevant subpathways in relation to the unfolding of the biological process under study. PMID:26246646

  18. Protein kinesis: The dynamics of protein trafficking and stability

    SciTech Connect

    1995-12-31

    The purpose of this conference is to provide a multidisciplinary forum for exchange of state-of-the-art information on protein kinesis. This volume contains abstracts of papers in the following areas: protein folding and modification in the endoplasmic reticulum; protein trafficking; protein translocation and folding; protein degradation; polarity; nuclear trafficking; membrane dynamics; and protein import into organelles.

  19. Protein flexibility as a biosignal.

    PubMed

    Zhao, Qinyi

    2010-01-01

    Dynamic properties of a protein are crucial for all protein functions, and those of signaling proteins are closely related to the biological function of living beings. The protein flexibility signal concept can be used to analyze this relationship. Protein flexibility controls the rate of protein conformational change and influences protein function. The modification of protein flexibility results in a change of protein activity. The logical nature of protein flexibility cannot be explained by applying the principles of protein three-dimensional structure theory or conformation concept. Signaling proteins show high protein flexibility. Many properties of signaling can be traced back to the dynamic natures of signaling protein. The action mechanism of volatile anesthetics and universal cellular reactions are related to flexibility in the change of signaling proteins. We conclude that protein dynamics is an enzyme-enhanced process, called dynamicase.

  20. Antimicrobial proteins: From old proteins, new tricks.

    PubMed

    Smith, Valerie J; Dyrynda, Elisabeth A

    2015-12-01

    This review describes the main types of antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) synthesised by crustaceans, primarily those identified in shrimp, crayfish, crab and lobster. It includes an overview of their range of microbicidal activities and the current landscape of our understanding of their gene expression patterns in different body tissues. It further summarises how their expression might change following various types of immune challenges. The review further considers proteins or protein fragments from crustaceans that have antimicrobial properties but are more usually associated with other biological functions, or are derived from such proteins. It discusses how these unconventional AMPs might be generated at, or delivered to, sites of infection and how they might contribute to crustacean host defence in vivo. It also highlights recent work that is starting to reveal the extent of multi-functionality displayed by some decapod AMPs, particularly their participation in other aspects of host protection. Examples of such activities include proteinase inhibition, phagocytosis, antiviral activity and haematopoiesis.

  1. Protein-protein Interactions using Radiolytic Footprinting

    SciTech Connect

    Takamoto,K.; Chance, M.

    2006-01-01

    Structural proteomics approaches using mass spectrometry are increasingly used in biology to examine the composition and structure of macromolecules. Hydroxyl radical-mediated protein footprinting using mass spectrometry has recently been developed to define structure, assembly, and conformational changes of macromolecules in solution based on measurements of reactivity of amino acid side chain groups with covalent modification reagents. Accurate measurements of side chain reactivity are achieved using quantitative liquid-chromatography-coupled mass spectrometry, whereas the side chain modification sites are identified using tandem mass spectrometry. In addition, the use of footprinting data in conjunction with computational modeling approaches is a powerful new method for testing and refining structural models of macromolecules and their complexes. In this review, we discuss the basic chemistry of hydroxyl radical reactions with peptides and proteins, highlight various approaches to map protein structure using radical oxidation methods, and describe state-of-the-art approaches to combine computational and footprinting data.

  2. Mechanisms Regulating Protein Localization.

    PubMed

    Bauer, Nicholas C; Doetsch, Paul W; Corbett, Anita H

    2015-10-01

    Cellular functions are dictated by protein content and activity. There are numerous strategies to regulate proteins varying from modulating gene expression to post-translational modifications. One commonly used mode of regulation in eukaryotes is targeted localization. By specifically redirecting the localization of a pool of existing protein, cells can achieve rapid changes in local protein function. Eukaryotic cells have evolved elegant targeting pathways to direct proteins to the appropriate cellular location or locations. Here, we provide a general overview of these localization pathways, with a focus on nuclear and mitochondrial transport, and present a survey of the evolutionarily conserved regulatory strategies identified thus far. We end with a description of several specific examples of proteins that exploit localization as an important mode of regulation.

  3. Mayaro virus proteins.

    PubMed

    Mezencio, J M; Rebello, M A

    1993-01-01

    Mayaro virus was grown in BHK-21 cells and purified by centrifugation in a potassium-tartrate gradient (5-50%). The electron microscopy analyses of the purified virus showed an homogeneous population of enveloped particles with 69 +/- 2.3 nm in diameter. Three structural virus proteins were identified and designated p1, p2 and p3. Their average molecular weight were p1, 54 KDa; p2, 50 KDa and p3, 34 KDa. In Mayaro virus infected Aedes albopictus cells and in BHK-21 infected cells we detected six viral proteins, in which three of them are the structural virus proteins and the other three were products from processing of precursors of viral proteins, whose molecular weights are 62 KDa, 64 KDa and 110 KDa. The 34 KDa protein was the first viral protein synthesized at 5 hours post-infection in both cell lines studied.

  4. TRIM proteins and diseases.

    PubMed

    Watanabe, Masashi; Hatakeyama, Shigetsugu

    2017-01-07

    Ubiquitination is one of the posttranslational modifications that regulates a number of intracellular events including signal transduction, protein quality control, transcription, cell cycle, apoptosis and development. The ubiquitin system functions as a garbage machine to degrade target proteins and as a regulator for several signalling pathways. Biochemical reaction of ubiquitination requires several enzymes including E1, E2 and E3, and E3 ubiquitin ligases play roles as receptors for recognizing target proteins. Most of the tripartite motif (TRIM) proteins are E3 ubiquitin ligases. Recent studies have shown that some TRIM proteins function as important regulators for a variety of diseases including cancer, inflammatory diseases, infectious diseases, neuropsychiatric disorders, chromosomal abnormalities and developmental diseases. In this review, we summarize the involvement of TRIM proteins in the aetiology of various diseases.

  5. Biofilm Matrix Proteins

    PubMed Central

    Fong, Jiunn N. C.; Yildiz, Fitnat H.

    2015-01-01

    Proteinaceous components of the biofilm matrix include secreted extracellular proteins, cell surface adhesins and protein subunits of cell appendages such as flagella and pili. Biofilm matrix proteins play diverse roles in biofilm formation and dissolution. They are involved in attaching cells to surfaces, stabilizing the biofilm matrix via interactions with exopolysaccharide and nucleic acid components, developing three-dimensional biofilm architectures, and dissolving biofilm matrix via enzymatic degradation of polysaccharides, proteins, and nucleic acids. In this chapter, we will review functions of matrix proteins in a selected set of microorganisms, studies of the matrix proteomes of Vibrio cholerae and Pseudomonas aeruginosa, and roles of outer membrane vesicles and of nucleoid-binding proteins in biofilm formation. PMID:26104709

  6. Protein oxidation and peroxidation

    PubMed Central

    Davies, Michael J.

    2016-01-01

    Proteins are major targets for radicals and two-electron oxidants in biological systems due to their abundance and high rate constants for reaction. With highly reactive radicals damage occurs at multiple side-chain and backbone sites. Less reactive species show greater selectivity with regard to the residues targeted and their spatial location. Modification can result in increased side-chain hydrophilicity, side-chain and backbone fragmentation, aggregation via covalent cross-linking or hydrophobic interactions, protein unfolding and altered conformation, altered interactions with biological partners and modified turnover. In the presence of O2, high yields of peroxyl radicals and peroxides (protein peroxidation) are formed; the latter account for up to 70% of the initial oxidant flux. Protein peroxides can oxidize both proteins and other targets. One-electron reduction results in additional radicals and chain reactions with alcohols and carbonyls as major products; the latter are commonly used markers of protein damage. Direct oxidation of cysteine (and less commonly) methionine residues is a major reaction; this is typically faster than with H2O2, and results in altered protein activity and function. Unlike H2O2, which is rapidly removed by protective enzymes, protein peroxides are only slowly removed, and catabolism is a major fate. Although turnover of modified proteins by proteasomal and lysosomal enzymes, and other proteases (e.g. mitochondrial Lon), can be efficient, protein hydroperoxides inhibit these pathways and this may contribute to the accumulation of modified proteins in cells. Available evidence supports an association between protein oxidation and multiple human pathologies, but whether this link is causal remains to be established. PMID:27026395

  7. Computer Models of Proteins

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2000-01-01

    Dr. Marc Pusey (seated) and Dr. Craig Kundrot use computers to analyze x-ray maps and generate three-dimensional models of protein structures. With this information, scientists at Marshall Space Flight Center can learn how proteins are made and how they work. The computer screen depicts a proten structure as a ball-and-stick model. Other models depict the actual volume occupied by the atoms, or the ribbon-like structures that are crucial to a protein's function.

  8. Protein Crystal Quality Studies

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1998-01-01

    Eddie Snell, Post-Doctoral Fellow the National Research Council (NRC) uses a reciprocal space mapping diffractometer for macromolecular crystal quality studies. The diffractometer is used in mapping the structure of macromolecules such as proteins to determine their structure and thus understand how they function with other proteins in the body. This is one of several analytical tools used on proteins crystallized on Earth and in space experiments. Photo credit: NASA/Marshall Space Flight Center (MSFC)

  9. Pressure cryocooling protein crystals

    DOEpatents

    Kim, Chae Un; Gruner, Sol M.

    2011-10-04

    Preparation of cryocooled protein crystal is provided by use of helium pressurizing and cryocooling to obtain cryocooled protein crystal allowing collection of high resolution data and by heavier noble gas (krypton or xenon) binding followed by helium pressurizing and cryocooling to obtain cryocooled protein crystal for collection of high resolution data and SAD phasing simultaneously. The helium pressurizing is carried out on crystal coated to prevent dehydration or on crystal grown in aqueous solution in a capillary.

  10. Chemical Synthesis of Proteins

    PubMed Central

    Nilsson, Bradley L.; Soellner, Matthew B.; Raines, Ronald T.

    2010-01-01

    Proteins have become accessible targets for chemical synthesis. The basic strategy is to use native chemical ligation, Staudinger ligation, or other orthogonal chemical reactions to couple synthetic peptides. The ligation reactions are compatible with a variety of solvents and proceed in solution or on a solid support. Chemical synthesis enables a level of control on protein composition that greatly exceeds that attainable with ribosome-mediated biosynthesis. Accordingly, the chemical synthesis of proteins is providing previously unattainable insight into the structure and function of proteins. PMID:15869385

  11. PIC: Protein Interactions Calculator

    PubMed Central

    Tina, K. G.; Bhadra, R.; Srinivasan, N.

    2007-01-01

    Interactions within a protein structure and interactions between proteins in an assembly are essential considerations in understanding molecular basis of stability and functions of proteins and their complexes. There are several weak and strong interactions that render stability to a protein structure or an assembly. Protein Interactions Calculator (PIC) is a server which, given the coordinate set of 3D structure of a protein or an assembly, computes various interactions such as disulphide bonds, interactions between hydrophobic residues, ionic interactions, hydrogen bonds, aromatic–aromatic interactions, aromatic–sulphur interactions and cation–π interactions within a protein or between proteins in a complex. Interactions are calculated on the basis of standard, published criteria. The identified interactions between residues can be visualized using a RasMol and Jmol interface. The advantage with PIC server is the easy availability of inter-residue interaction calculations in a single site. It also determines the accessible surface area and residue-depth, which is the distance of a residue from the surface of the protein. User can also recognize specific kind of interactions, such as apolar–apolar residue interactions or ionic interactions, that are formed between buried or exposed residues or near the surface or deep inside. PMID:17584791

  12. PIC: Protein Interactions Calculator.

    PubMed

    Tina, K G; Bhadra, R; Srinivasan, N

    2007-07-01

    Interactions within a protein structure and interactions between proteins in an assembly are essential considerations in understanding molecular basis of stability and functions of proteins and their complexes. There are several weak and strong interactions that render stability to a protein structure or an assembly. Protein Interactions Calculator (PIC) is a server which, given the coordinate set of 3D structure of a protein or an assembly, computes various interactions such as disulphide bonds, interactions between hydrophobic residues, ionic interactions, hydrogen bonds, aromatic-aromatic interactions, aromatic-sulphur interactions and cation-pi interactions within a protein or between proteins in a complex. Interactions are calculated on the basis of standard, published criteria. The identified interactions between residues can be visualized using a RasMol and Jmol interface. The advantage with PIC server is the easy availability of inter-residue interaction calculations in a single site. It also determines the accessible surface area and residue-depth, which is the distance of a residue from the surface of the protein. User can also recognize specific kind of interactions, such as apolar-apolar residue interactions or ionic interactions, that are formed between buried or exposed residues or near the surface or deep inside.

  13. Dietary proteins and angiogenesis.

    PubMed

    Medina, Miguel Ángel; Quesada, Ana R

    2014-01-17

    Both defective and persistent angiogenesis are linked to pathological situations in the adult. Compounds able to modulate angiogenesis have a potential value for the treatment of such pathologies. Several small molecules present in the diet have been shown to have modulatory effects on angiogenesis. This review presents the current state of knowledge on the potential modulatory roles of dietary proteins on angiogenesis. There is currently limited available information on the topic. Milk contains at least three proteins for which modulatory effects on angiogenesis have been previously demonstrated. On the other hand, there is some scarce information on the potential of dietary lectins, edible plant proteins and high protein diets to modulate angiogenesis.

  14. Consensus protein design

    PubMed Central

    Porebski, Benjamin T.; Buckle, Ashley M.

    2016-01-01

    A popular and successful strategy in semi-rational design of protein stability is the use of evolutionary information encapsulated in homologous protein sequences. Consensus design is based on the hypothesis that at a given position, the respective consensus amino acid contributes more than average to the stability of the protein than non-conserved amino acids. Here, we review the consensus design approach, its theoretical underpinnings, successes, limitations and challenges, as well as providing a detailed guide to its application in protein engineering. PMID:27274091

  15. Human Mitochondrial Protein Database

    National Institute of Standards and Technology Data Gateway

    SRD 131 Human Mitochondrial Protein Database (Web, free access)   The Human Mitochondrial Protein Database (HMPDb) provides comprehensive data on mitochondrial and human nuclear encoded proteins involved in mitochondrial biogenesis and function. This database consolidates information from SwissProt, LocusLink, Protein Data Bank (PDB), GenBank, Genome Database (GDB), Online Mendelian Inheritance in Man (OMIM), Human Mitochondrial Genome Database (mtDB), MITOMAP, Neuromuscular Disease Center and Human 2-D PAGE Databases. This database is intended as a tool not only to aid in studying the mitochondrion but in studying the associated diseases.

  16. TRIM proteins in development.

    PubMed

    Petrera, Francesca; Meroni, Germana

    2012-01-01

    TRIM proteins play important roles in several patho-physiological processes. Their common activity within the ubiquitylation pathway makes them amenable to a number of diverse biological roles. Many of the TRIM genes are highly and sometimes specifically expressed during embryogenesis, it is therefore not surprising that several of them might be involved in developmental processes. Here, we primarily discuss the developmental implications of two subgroups of TRIM proteins that conserved domain composition and functions from their invertebrate ancestors. The two groups are: the TRIM-NHL proteins implicated in miRNA processing regulation and the TRIM-FN3 proteins involved in ventral midline development.

  17. Engineering therapeutic protein disaggregases

    PubMed Central

    Shorter, James

    2016-01-01

    Therapeutic agents are urgently required to cure several common and fatal neurodegenerative disorders caused by protein misfolding and aggregation, including amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), Parkinson’s disease (PD), and Alzheimer’s disease (AD). Protein disaggregases that reverse protein misfolding and restore proteins to native structure, function, and localization could mitigate neurodegeneration by simultaneously reversing 1) any toxic gain of function of the misfolded form and 2) any loss of function due to misfolding. Potentiated variants of Hsp104, a hexameric AAA+ ATPase and protein disaggregase from yeast, have been engineered to robustly disaggregate misfolded proteins connected with ALS (e.g., TDP-43 and FUS) and PD (e.g., α-synuclein). However, Hsp104 has no metazoan homologue. Metazoa possess protein disaggregase systems distinct from Hsp104, including Hsp110, Hsp70, and Hsp40, as well as HtrA1, which might be harnessed to reverse deleterious protein misfolding. Nevertheless, vicissitudes of aging, environment, or genetics conspire to negate these disaggregase systems in neurodegenerative disease. Thus, engineering potentiated human protein disaggregases or isolating small-molecule enhancers of their activity could yield transformative therapeutics for ALS, PD, and AD. PMID:27255695

  18. Acanthamoeba castellanii STAT Protein

    PubMed Central

    Kicinska, Anna; Leluk, Jacek; Jarmuszkiewicz, Wieslawa

    2014-01-01

    STAT (signal transducers and activators of transcription) proteins are one of the important mediators of phosphotyrosine-regulated signaling in metazoan cells. We described the presence of STAT protein in a unicellular, free-living amoebae with a simple life cycle, Acanthamoeba castellanii. A. castellanii is the only, studied to date, Amoebozoan that does not belong to Mycetozoa but possesses STATs. A sequence of the A. castellanii STAT protein includes domains similar to those of the Dictyostelium STAT proteins: a coiled coil (characteristic for Dictyostelium STAT coiled coil), a STAT DNA-binding domain and a Src-homology domain. The search for protein sequences homologous to A. castellanii STAT revealed 17 additional sequences from lower eukaryotes. Interestingly, all of these sequences come from Amoebozoa organisms that belong to either Mycetozoa (slime molds) or Centramoebida. We showed that there are four separated clades within the slime mold STAT proteins. The A. castellanii STAT protein branches next to a group of STATc proteins from Mycetozoa. We also demonstrate that Amoebozoa form a distinct monophyletic lineage within the STAT protein world that is well separated from the other groups. PMID:25338074

  19. Protein intakes in India.

    PubMed

    Swaminathan, Sumathi; Vaz, Mario; Kurpad, Anura V

    2012-08-01

    Indian diets derive almost 60 % of their protein from cereals with relatively low digestibility and quality. There have been several surveys of diets and protein intakes in India by the National Nutrition Monitoring Board (NNMB) over the last 25 years, in urban and rural, as well as in slum dwellers and tribal populations. Data of disadvantaged populations from slums, tribals and sedentary rural Indian populations show that the protein intake (mainly from cereals) is about 1 gm/kg/day. However, the protein intake looks less promising in terms of the protein digestibility corrected amino acid score (PDCAAS), using lysine as the first limiting amino acid, where all populations, particularly rural and tribal, appear to have an inadequate quality to their protein intake. The protein: energy (PE) ratio is a measure of dietary quality, and has been used in the 2007 WHO/FAO/UNU report to define reference requirement values with which the adequacy of diets can be evaluated in terms of a protein quality corrected PE ratio. It is likely that about one third of this sedentary rural population is at risk of not meeting their requirements. These levels of risk of deficiency are in a population with relatively low BMI populations, whose diets are also inadequate in fruits and vegetables. Therefore, while the burden of enhancing the quality of protein intake in rural India exists, the quality of the diet, in general, represents a challenge that must be met.

  20. Self assembling proteins

    DOEpatents

    Yeates, Todd O.; Padilla, Jennifer; Colovos, Chris

    2004-06-29

    Novel fusion proteins capable of self-assembling into regular structures, as well as nucleic acids encoding the same, are provided. The subject fusion proteins comprise at least two oligomerization domains rigidly linked together, e.g. through an alpha helical linking group. Also provided are regular structures comprising a plurality of self-assembled fusion proteins of the subject invention, and methods for producing the same. The subject fusion proteins find use in the preparation of a variety of nanostructures, where such structures include: cages, shells, double-layer rings, two-dimensional layers, three-dimensional crystals, filaments, and tubes.

  1. Ultrafiltration of pegylated proteins

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Molek, Jessica R.

    There is considerable clinical interest in the use of "second-generation" therapeutics produced by conjugation of a native protein with various polymers including polyethylene glycol (PEG). PEG--protein conjugates, so-called PEGylated proteins, can exhibit enhanced stability, half-life, and bioavailability. One of the challenges in the commercial production of PEGylated proteins is the purification required to remove unreacted polymer, native protein, and in many cases PEGylated proteins with nonoptimal degrees of conjugation. The overall objective of this thesis was to examine the use of ultrafiltration for the purification of PEGylated proteins. This included: (1) analysis of size-based separation of PEGylated proteins using conventional ultrafiltration membranes, (2) use of electrically-charged membranes to exploit differences in electrostatic interactions, and (3) examination of the effects of PEGylation on protein fouling. The experimental results were analyzed using appropriate theoretical models, with the underlying physical properties of the PEGylated proteins evaluated using size exclusion chromatography, capillary electrophoresis, dynamic light scattering, and reverse phase chromatography. PEGylated proteins were produced by covalent attachment of activated PEG to a protein via primary amines on the lysine residues. A simple model was developed for the reaction kinetics, which was used to explore the effect of reaction conditions and mode of operation on the distribution of PEGylated products. The effective size of the PEGylated proteins was evaluated using size exclusion chromatography, with appropriate correlations developed for the size in terms of the molecular weight of the native protein and attached PEG. The electrophoretic mobility of the PEGylated proteins were evaluated by capillary electrophoresis with the data in good agreement with a simple model accounting for the increase in protein size and the reduction in the number of protonated amine

  2. Regulation of protein secretion by ... protein secretion?

    PubMed

    Atmakuri, Krishnamohan; Fortune, Sarah M

    2008-09-11

    Mycobacterium tuberculosis (Mtb) requires an alternative protein secretion system, ESX1, for virulence. Recently, Raghavan et al. (2008) reported a new regulatory circuit that may explain how ESX1 activity is controlled during infection. Mtb appears to regulate ESX1 by modulating transcription of associated genes rather than structural components of the secretion system itself.

  3. Human Plasma Protein C

    PubMed Central

    Kisiel, Walter

    1979-01-01

    Protein C is a vitamin K-dependent protein, which exists in bovine plasma as a precursor of a serine protease. In this study, protein C was isolated to homogeneity from human plasma by barium citrate adsorption and elution, ammonium sulfate fractionation, DEAE-Sephadex chromatography, dextran sulfate agarose chromatography, and preparative polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis. Human protein C (Mr = 62,000) contains 23% carbohydrate and is composed of a light chain (Mr = 21,000) and a heavy chain (Mr = 41,000) held together by a disulfide bond(s). The light chain has an amino-terminal sequence of Ala-Asn-Ser-Phe-Leu- and the heavy chain has an aminoterminal sequence of Asp-Pro-Glu-Asp-Gln. The residues that are identical to bovine protein C are underlined. Incubation of human protein C with human α-thrombin at an enzyme to substrate weight ratio of 1:50 resulted in the formation of activated protein C, an enzyme with serine amidase activity. In the activation reaction, the apparent molecular weight of the heavy chain decreased from 41,000 to 40,000 as determined by gel electrophoresis in the presence of sodium dodecyl sulfate. No apparent change in the molecular weight of the light chain was observed in the activation process. The heavy chain of human activated protein C also contains the active-site serine residue as evidenced by its ability to react with radiolabeled diisopropyl fluorophosphate. Human activated protein C markedly prolongs the kaolin-cephalin clotting time of human plasma, but not that of bovine plasma. The amidolytic and anticoagulant activities of human activated protein C were completely obviated by prior incubation of the enzyme with diisopropyl fluorophosphate. These results indicate that human protein C, like its bovine counterpart, exists in plasma as a zymogen and is converted to a serine protease by limited proteolysis with attendant anticoagulant activity. Images PMID:468991

  4. Engineered Protein Polymers

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2010-05-31

    of each pure polymer, we plan to combine the various polymer solutions in different ratios to tune the composition and physico-chemical properties...protein materials as vehicles for storage and delivery of small molecules. Each protein polymer under concentrations for particle formation ( vida

  5. Multidomain proteins under force.

    PubMed

    Valle-Orero, Jessica; Rivas-Pardo, Jaime Andrés; Popa, Ionel

    2017-04-28

    Advancements in single-molecule force spectroscopy techniques such as atomic force microscopy and magnetic tweezers allow investigation of how domain folding under force can play a physiological role. Combining these techniques with protein engineering and HaloTag covalent attachment, we investigate similarities and differences between four model proteins: I10 and I91-two immunoglobulin-like domains from the muscle protein titin, and two α + β fold proteins-ubiquitin and protein L. These proteins show a different mechanical response and have unique extensions under force. Remarkably, when normalized to their contour length, the size of the unfolding and refolding steps as a function of force reduces to a single master curve. This curve can be described using standard models of polymer elasticity, explaining the entropic nature of the measured steps. We further validate our measurements with a simple energy landscape model, which combines protein folding with polymer physics and accounts for the complex nature of tandem domains under force. This model can become a useful tool to help in deciphering the complexity of multidomain proteins operating under force.

  6. Archaeal chromatin proteins.

    PubMed

    Zhang, ZhenFeng; Guo, Li; Huang, Li

    2012-05-01

    Archaea, along with Bacteria and Eukarya, are the three domains of life. In all living cells, chromatin proteins serve a crucial role in maintaining the integrity of the structure and function of the genome. An array of small, abundant and basic DNA-binding proteins, considered candidates for chromatin proteins, has been isolated from the Euryarchaeota and the Crenarchaeota, the two major phyla in Archaea. While most euryarchaea encode proteins resembling eukaryotic histones, crenarchaea appear to synthesize a number of unique DNA-binding proteins likely involved in chromosomal organization. Several of these proteins (e.g., archaeal histones, Sac10b homologs, Sul7d, Cren7, CC1, etc.) have been extensively studied. However, whether they are chromatin proteins and how they function in vivo remain to be fully understood. Future investigation of archaeal chromatin proteins will lead to a better understanding of chromosomal organization and gene expression in Archaea and provide valuable information on the evolution of DNA packaging in cellular life.

  7. Protein Attachment on Nanodiamonds.

    PubMed

    Lin, Chung-Lun; Lin, Cheng-Huang; Chang, Huan-Cheng; Su, Meng-Chih

    2015-07-16

    A recent advance in nanotechnology is the scale-up production of small and nonaggregated diamond nanoparticles suitable for biological applications. Using detonation nanodiamonds (NDs) with an average diameter of ∼4 nm as the adsorbents, we have studied the static attachment of three proteins (myoglobin, bovine serum albumin, and insulin) onto the nanoparticles by optical spectroscopy, mass spectrometry, and dynamic light scattering, and electrophoretic zeta potential measurements. Results show that the protein surface coverage is predominantly determined by the competition between protein-protein and protein-ND interactions, giving each protein a unique and characteristic structural configuration in its own complex. Specifically, both myoglobin and bovine serum albumin show a Langmuir-type adsorption behavior, forming 1:1 complexes at saturation, whereas insulin folds into a tightly bound multimer before adsorption. The markedly different adsorption patterns appear to be independent of the protein concentration and are closely related to the affinity of the individual proteins for the NDs. The present study provides a fundamental understanding for the use of NDs as a platform for nanomedical drug delivery.

  8. Poxviral Ankyrin Proteins

    PubMed Central

    Herbert, Michael H.; Squire, Christopher J.; Mercer, Andrew A

    2015-01-01

    Multiple repeats of the ankyrin motif (ANK) are ubiquitous throughout the kingdoms of life but are absent from most viruses. The main exception to this is the poxvirus family, and specifically the chordopoxviruses, with ANK repeat proteins present in all but three species from separate genera. The poxviral ANK repeat proteins belong to distinct orthologue groups spread over different species, and align well with the phylogeny of their genera. This distribution throughout the chordopoxviruses indicates these proteins were present in an ancestral vertebrate poxvirus, and have since undergone numerous duplication events. Most poxviral ANK repeat proteins contain an unusual topology of multiple ANK motifs starting at the N-terminus with a C-terminal poxviral homologue of the cellular F-box enabling interaction with the cellular SCF ubiquitin ligase complex. The subtle variations between ANK repeat proteins of individual poxviruses suggest an array of different substrates may be bound by these protein-protein interaction domains and, via the F-box, potentially directed to cellular ubiquitination pathways and possible degradation. Known interaction partners of several of these proteins indicate that the NF-κB coordinated anti-viral response is a key target, whilst some poxviral ANK repeat domains also have an F-box independent affect on viral host-range. PMID:25690795

  9. Protein Kinases and Addiction

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Anna M.; Messing, Robert O.

    2011-01-01

    Although drugs of abuse have different chemical structures and interact with different protein targets, all appear to usurp common neuronal systems that regulate reward and motivation. Addiction is a complex disease that is thought to involve drug-induced changes in synaptic plasticity due to alterations in cell signaling, gene transcription, and protein synthesis. Recent evidence suggests that drugs of abuse interact with and change a common network of signaling pathways that include a subset of specific protein kinases. The best studied of these kinases are reviewed here and include extracellular signal-regulated kinase, cAMP-dependent protein kinase, cyclin-dependent protein kinase 5, protein kinase C, calcium/calmodulin-dependent protein kinase II, and Fyn tyrosine kinase. These kinases have been implicated in various aspects of drug addiction including acute drug effects, drug self-administration, withdrawal, reinforcement, sensitization, and tolerance. Identifying protein kinase substrates and signaling pathways that contribute to the addicted state may provide novel approaches for new pharma-cotherapies to treat drug addiction. PMID:18991950

  10. Sac phosphatase domain proteins.

    PubMed Central

    Hughes, W E; Cooke, F T; Parker, P J

    2000-01-01

    Advances in our understanding of the roles of phosphatidylinositol phosphates in controlling cellular functions such as endocytosis, exocytosis and the actin cytoskeleton have included new insights into the phosphatases that are responsible for the interconversion of these lipids. One of these is an entirely novel class of phosphatase domain found in a number of well characterized proteins. Proteins containing this Sac phosphatase domain include the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae proteins Sac1p and Fig4p. The Sac phosphatase domain is also found within the mammalian phosphoinositide 5-phosphatase synaptojanin and the yeast synaptojanin homologues Inp51p, Inp52p and Inp53p. These proteins therefore contain both Sac phosphatase and 5-phosphatase domains. This review describes the Sac phosphatase domain-containing proteins and their actions, with particular reference to the genetic and biochemical insights provided by study of the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae. PMID:10947947

  11. Proteins in unexpected locations.

    PubMed Central

    Smalheiser, N R

    1996-01-01

    Members of all classes of proteins--cytoskeletal components, secreted growth factors, glycolytic enzymes, kinases, transcription factors, chaperones, transmembrane proteins, and extracellular matrix proteins--have been identified in cellular compartments other than their conventional sites of action. Some of these proteins are expressed as distinct compartment-specific isoforms, have novel mechanisms for intercompartmental translocation, have distinct endogenous biological actions within each compartment, and are regulated in a compartment-specific manner as a function of physiologic state. The possibility that many, if not most, proteins have distinct roles in more than one cellular compartment has implications for the evolution of cell organization and may be important for understanding pathological conditions such as Alzheimer's disease and cancer. PMID:8862516

  12. 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

  13. Transdermal delivery of proteins.

    PubMed

    Kalluri, Haripriya; Banga, Ajay K

    2011-03-01

    Transdermal delivery of peptides and proteins avoids the disadvantages associated with the invasive parenteral route of administration and other alternative routes such as the pulmonary and nasal routes. Since proteins have a large size and are hydrophilic in nature, they cannot permeate passively across the skin due to the stratum corneum which allows the transport of only small lipophilic drug molecules. Enhancement techniques such as chemical enhancers, iontophoresis, microneedles, electroporation, sonophoresis, thermal ablation, laser ablation, radiofrequency ablation and noninvasive jet injectors aid in the delivery of proteins by overcoming the skin barrier in different ways. In this review, these enhancement techniques that can enable the transdermal delivery of proteins are discussed, including a discussion of mechanisms, sterility requirements, and commercial development of products. Combination of enhancement techniques may result in a synergistic effect allowing increased protein delivery and these are also discussed.

  14. Protein crystallization in microgravity.

    PubMed

    Aibara, S; Shibata, K; Morita, Y

    1997-12-01

    A space experiment involving protein crystallization was conducted in a microgravity environment using the space shuttle "Endeavour" of STS-47, on a 9-day mission from September 12th to 20th in 1992. The crystallization was carried out according to a batch method, and 5 proteins were selected as flight samples for crystallization. Two of these proteins: hen egg-white lysozyme and co-amino acid: pyruvate aminotransferase from Pseudomonas sp. F-126, were obtained as single crystals of good diffraction quality. Since 1992 we have carried out several space experiments for protein crystallization aboard space shuttles and the space station MIR. Our experimental results obtained mainly from hen egg-white lysozyme are described below, focusing on the effects of microgravity on protein crystal growth.

  15. Protein expression-yeast.

    PubMed

    Nielsen, Klaus H

    2014-01-01

    Yeast is an excellent system for the expression of recombinant eukaryotic proteins. Both endogenous and heterologous proteins can be overexpressed in yeast (Phan et al., 2001; Ton and Rao, 2004). Because yeast is easy to manipulate genetically, a strain can be optimized for the expression of a specific protein. Many eukaryotic proteins contain posttranslational modifications that can be performed in yeast but not in bacterial expression systems. In comparison with mammalian cell culture expression systems, growing yeast is both faster and less expensive, and large-scale cultures can be performed using fermentation. While several different yeast expression systems exist, this chapter focuses on the budding yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae and will briefly describe some options to consider when selecting vectors and tags to be used for protein expression. Throughout this chapter, the expression and purification of yeast eIF3 is shown as an example alongside a general scheme outline.

  16. Protein Unfolding and Alzheimer's

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cheng, Kelvin

    2012-10-01

    Early interaction events of beta-amyloid (Aβ) proteins with neurons have been associated with the pathogenesis of Alzheimer's disease. Knowledge pertaining to the role of lipid molecules, particularly cholesterol, in modulating the single Aβ interactions with neurons at the atomic length and picosecond time resolutions, remains unclear. In our research, we have used atomistic molecular dynamics simulations to explore early molecular events including protein insertion kinetics, protein unfolding, and protein-induced membrane disruption of Aβ in lipid domains that mimic the nanoscopic raft and non-raft regions of the neural membrane. In this talk, I will summarize our current work on investigating the role of cholesterol in regulating the Aβ interaction events with membranes at the molecular level. I will also explain how our results will provide new insights into understanding the pathogenesis of Alzheimer's disease associated with the Aβ proteins.

  17. Junin virus structural proteins.

    PubMed Central

    De Martínez Segovia, Z M; De Mitri, M I

    1977-01-01

    Polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis of purified Junin virus revealed six distinct structural polypeptides, two major and four minor ones. Four of these polypeptides appeared to be covalently linked with carbohydrate. The molecular weights of the six proteins, estimated by coelectrophoresis with marker proteins, ranged from 25,000 to 91,000. One of the two major components (number 3) was identified as a nucleoprotein and had a molecular weight of 64,000. It was the most prominent protein and was nonglycosylated. The other major protein (number 5), with a molecular weight of 38,000, was a glucoprotein and a component of the viral envelope. The location on the virion of three additional glycopeptides with molecular weights of 91,000, 72,000, and 52,000, together with a protein with a molecular weight of 25,000, was not well defined. PMID:189088

  18. Manipulating and Visualizing Proteins

    SciTech Connect

    Simon, Horst D.

    2003-12-05

    ProteinShop Gives Researchers a Hands-On Tool for Manipulating, Visualizing Protein Structures. The Human Genome Project and other biological research efforts are creating an avalanche of new data about the chemical makeup and genetic codes of living organisms. But in order to make sense of this raw data, researchers need software tools which let them explore and model data in a more intuitive fashion. With this in mind, researchers at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory and the University of California, Davis, have developed ProteinShop, a visualization and modeling program which allows researchers to manipulate protein structures with pinpoint control, guided in large part by their own biological and experimental instincts. Biologists have spent the last half century trying to unravel the ''protein folding problem,'' which refers to the way chains of amino acids physically fold themselves into three-dimensional proteins. This final shape, which resembles a crumpled ribbon or piece of origami, is what determines how the protein functions and translates genetic information. Understanding and modeling this geometrically complex formation is no easy matter. ProteinShop takes a given sequence of amino acids and uses visualization guides to help generate predictions about the secondary structures, identifying alpha helices and flat beta strands, and the coil regions that bind them. Once secondary structures are in place, researchers can twist and turn these pre-configurations until they come up with a number of possible tertiary structure conformations. In turn, these are fed into a computationally intensive optimization procedure that tries to find the final, three-dimensional protein structure. Most importantly, ProteinShop allows users to add human knowledge and intuition to the protein structure prediction process, thus bypassing bad configurations that would otherwise be fruitless for optimization. This saves compute cycles and accelerates the entire process, so

  19. Protein disulfide engineering.

    PubMed

    Dombkowski, Alan A; Sultana, Kazi Zakia; Craig, Douglas B

    2014-01-21

    Improving the stability of proteins is an important goal in many biomedical and industrial applications. A logical approach is to emulate stabilizing molecular interactions found in nature. Disulfide bonds are covalent interactions that provide substantial stability to many proteins and conform to well-defined geometric conformations, thus making them appealing candidates in protein engineering efforts. Disulfide engineering is the directed design of novel disulfide bonds into target proteins. This important biotechnological tool has achieved considerable success in a wide range of applications, yet the rules that govern the stabilizing effects of disulfide bonds are not fully characterized. Contrary to expectations, many designed disulfide bonds have resulted in decreased stability of the modified protein. We review progress in disulfide engineering, with an emphasis on the issue of stability and computational methods that facilitate engineering efforts.

  20. Proteins, fluctuations and complexity

    SciTech Connect

    Frauenfelder, Hans; Chen, Guo; Fenimore, Paul W

    2008-01-01

    Glasses, supercooled liquids, and proteins share common properties, in particular the existence of two different types of fluctuations, {alpha} and {beta}. While the effect of the {alpha} fluctuations on proteins has been known for a few years, the effect of {beta} fluctuations has not been understood. By comparing neutron scattering data on the protein myoglobin with the {beta} fluctuations in the hydration shell measured by dielectric spectroscopy we show that the internal protein motions are slaved to these fluctuations. We also show that there is no 'dynamic transition' in proteins near 200 K. The rapid increase in the mean square displacement with temperature in many neutron scattering experiments is quantitatively predicted by the {beta} fluctuations in the hydration shell.

  1. [Controversies around diet proteins].

    PubMed

    Cichosz, Grazyna; Czeczot, Hanna

    2013-12-01

    Critical theories regarding proteins of anima origin are still and still popularized, though they are ungrounded from scientific point of view. Predominance of soya proteins over the animal ones in relation to their influence on calcium metabolism, bone break risk or risk of osteoporosis morbidity has not been confirmed in any honest, reliable research experiment. Statement, that sulphur amino acids influence disadvantageously on calcium metabolism of human organism and bone status, is completely groundless, the more so as presence of sulphur amino acids in diet (animal proteins are their best source) is the condition of endogenic synthesis of glutathione, the key antioxidant of the organism, and taurine stimulating brain functioning. Deficiency of proteins in the diet produce weakness of intellectual effectiveness and immune response. There is no doubt that limitation of consumption of animal proteins of standard value is not good for health.

  2. 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

  3. Protein crystal growth

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bugg, Charles E.

    1993-01-01

    Proteins account for 50% or more of the dry weight of most living systems and play a crucial role in virtually all biological processes. Since the specific functions of essentially all biological molecules are determined by their three-dimensional structures, it is obvious that a detailed understanding of the structural makeup of a protein is essential to any systematic research pertaining to it. At the present time, protein crystallography has no substitute, it is the only technique available for elucidating the atomic arrangements within complicated biological molecules. Most macromolecules are extremely difficult to crystallize, and many otherwise exciting and promising projects have terminated at the crystal growth stage. There is a pressing need to better understand protein crystal growth, and to develop new techniques that can be used to enhance the size and quality of protein crystals. There are several aspects of microgravity that might be exploited to enhance protein crystal growth. The major factor that might be expected to alter crystal growth processes in space is the elimination of density-driven convective flow. Another factor that can be readily controlled in the absence of gravity is the sedimentation of growing crystal in a gravitational field. Another potential advantage of microgravity for protein crystal growth is the option of doing containerless crystal growth. One can readily understand why the microgravity environment established by Earth-orbiting vehicles is perceived to offer unique opportunities for the protein crystallographer. The near term objectives of the Protein Crystal Growth in a Microgravity Environment (PCG/ME) project is to continue to improve the techniques, procedures, and hardware systems used to grow protein crystals in Earth orbit.

  4. Regulation of protein turnover by heat shock proteins.

    PubMed

    Bozaykut, Perinur; Ozer, Nesrin Kartal; Karademir, Betul

    2014-12-01

    Protein turnover reflects the balance between synthesis and degradation of proteins, and it is a crucial process for the maintenance of the cellular protein pool. The folding of proteins, refolding of misfolded proteins, and also degradation of misfolded and damaged proteins are involved in the protein quality control (PQC) system. Correct protein folding and degradation are controlled by many different factors, one of the most important of which is the heat shock protein family. Heat shock proteins (HSPs) are in the class of molecular chaperones, which may prevent the inappropriate interaction of proteins and induce correct folding. On the other hand, these proteins play significant roles in the degradation pathways, including endoplasmic reticulum-associated degradation (ERAD), the ubiquitin-proteasome system, and autophagy. This review focuses on the emerging role of HSPs in the regulation of protein turnover; the effects of HSPs on the degradation machineries ERAD, autophagy, and proteasome; as well as the role of posttranslational modifications in the PQC system.

  5. Purifying protein complexes for mass spectrometry: applications to protein translation.

    PubMed

    Link, Andrew J; Fleischer, Tracey C; Weaver, Connie M; Gerbasi, Vincent R; Jennings, Jennifer L

    2005-03-01

    Proteins control and mediate most of the biological activities in the cell. In most cases, proteins either interact with regulatory proteins or function in large molecular assemblies to carryout biological processes. Understanding the functions of individual proteins requires the identification of these interacting proteins. With its speed and sensitivity, mass spectrometry has become the dominant method for identifying components of protein complexes. This article reviews and discusses various approaches to purify protein complexes and analyze the proteins using mass spectrometry. As examples, methods to isolate and analyze protein complexes responsible for the translation of messenger RNAs into polypeptides are described.

  6. Prediction of protein-protein interactions: unifying evolution and structure at protein interfaces.

    PubMed

    Tuncbag, Nurcan; Gursoy, Attila; Keskin, Ozlem

    2011-06-01

    The vast majority of the chores in the living cell involve protein-protein interactions. Providing details of protein interactions at the residue level and incorporating them into protein interaction networks are crucial toward the elucidation of a dynamic picture of cells. Despite the rapid increase in the number of structurally known protein complexes, we are still far away from a complete network. Given experimental limitations, computational modeling of protein interactions is a prerequisite to proceed on the way to complete structural networks. In this work, we focus on the question 'how do proteins interact?' rather than 'which proteins interact?' and we review structure-based protein-protein interaction prediction approaches. As a sample approach for modeling protein interactions, PRISM is detailed which combines structural similarity and evolutionary conservation in protein interfaces to infer structures of complexes in the protein interaction network. This will ultimately help us to understand the role of protein interfaces in predicting bound conformations.

  7. NMCP/LINC proteins

    PubMed Central

    Ciska, Malgorzata; Moreno Díaz de la Espina, Susana

    2013-01-01

    Lamins are the main components of the metazoan lamina, and while the organization of the nuclear lamina of metazoans and plants is similar, there are apparently no genes encoding lamins or most lamin-binding proteins in plants. Thus, the plant lamina is not lamin-based and the proteins that form this structure are still to be characterized. Members of the plant NMCP/LINC/CRWN protein family share the typical tripartite structure of lamins, although the 2 exhibit no sequence similarity. However, given the many similarities between NMCP/LINC/CRWN proteins and lamins (structural organization, position of conserved regions, sub-nuclear distribution, solubility, and pattern of expression), these proteins are good candidates to carry out the functions of lamins in plants. Moreover, functional analysis of NMCP/LINC mutants has revealed their involvement in maintaining nuclear size and shape, another activity fulfilled by lamins. This review summarizes the current understanding of NMCP/LINC proteins and discusses future studies that will be required to demonstrate definitively that these proteins are plant analogs of lamins. PMID:24128696

  8. TRIM proteins in cancer.

    PubMed

    Cambiaghi, Valeria; Giuliani, Virginia; Lombardi, Sara; Marinelli, Cristiano; Toffalorio, Francesca; Pelicci, Pier Giuseppe

    2012-01-01

    Some members of the tripartite motif (TRIM/RBCC) protein family are thought to be important regulators of carcinogenesis. This is not surprising as the TRIM proteins are involved in several biological processes, such as cell growth, development and cellular differentiation and alteration of these proteins can affect transcriptional regulation, cell proliferation and apoptosis. In particular, four TRIM family genes are frequently translocated to other genes, generating fusion proteins implicated in cancer initiation and progression. Among these the most famous is the promyelocytic leukaemia gene PML, which encodes the protein TRIM19. PML is involved in the t(15;17) translocation that specifically occurs in Acute Promyelocytic Leukaemia (APL), resulting in a PML-retinoic acid receptor-alpha (PML-RARalpha) fusion protein. Other members of the TRIM family are linked to cancer development without being involved in chromosomal re-arrangements, possibly through ubiquitination or loss of tumour suppression functions. This chapter discusses the biological functions of TRIM proteins in cancer.

  9. Bacterial ice crystal controlling proteins.

    PubMed

    Lorv, Janet S H; Rose, David R; Glick, Bernard R

    2014-01-01

    Across the world, many ice active bacteria utilize ice crystal controlling proteins for aid in freezing tolerance at subzero temperatures. Ice crystal controlling proteins include both antifreeze and ice nucleation proteins. Antifreeze proteins minimize freezing damage by inhibiting growth of large ice crystals, while ice nucleation proteins induce formation of embryonic ice crystals. Although both protein classes have differing functions, these proteins use the same ice binding mechanisms. Rather than direct binding, it is probable that these protein classes create an ice surface prior to ice crystal surface adsorption. Function is differentiated by molecular size of the protein. This paper reviews the similar and different aspects of bacterial antifreeze and ice nucleation proteins, the role of these proteins in freezing tolerance, prevalence of these proteins in psychrophiles, and current mechanisms of protein-ice interactions.

  10. Bacterial Ice Crystal Controlling Proteins

    PubMed Central

    Lorv, Janet S. H.; Rose, David R.; Glick, Bernard R.

    2014-01-01

    Across the world, many ice active bacteria utilize ice crystal controlling proteins for aid in freezing tolerance at subzero temperatures. Ice crystal controlling proteins include both antifreeze and ice nucleation proteins. Antifreeze proteins minimize freezing damage by inhibiting growth of large ice crystals, while ice nucleation proteins induce formation of embryonic ice crystals. Although both protein classes have differing functions, these proteins use the same ice binding mechanisms. Rather than direct binding, it is probable that these protein classes create an ice surface prior to ice crystal surface adsorption. Function is differentiated by molecular size of the protein. This paper reviews the similar and different aspects of bacterial antifreeze and ice nucleation proteins, the role of these proteins in freezing tolerance, prevalence of these proteins in psychrophiles, and current mechanisms of protein-ice interactions. PMID:24579057

  11. Protein based Block Copolymers

    PubMed Central

    Rabotyagova, Olena S.; Cebe, Peggy; Kaplan, David L.

    2011-01-01

    Advances in genetic engineering have led to the synthesis of protein-based block copolymers with control of chemistry and molecular weight, resulting in unique physical and biological properties. The benefits from incorporating peptide blocks into copolymer designs arise from the fundamental properties of proteins to adopt ordered conformations and to undergo self-assembly, providing control over structure formation at various length scales when compared to conventional block copolymers. This review covers the synthesis, structure, assembly, properties, and applications of protein-based block copolymers. PMID:21235251

  12. Piezoelectric allostery of protein

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ohnuki, Jun; Sato, Takato; Takano, Mitsunori

    2016-07-01

    Allostery is indispensable for a protein to work, where a locally applied stimulus is transmitted to a distant part of the molecule. While the allostery due to chemical stimuli such as ligand binding has long been studied, the growing interest in mechanobiology prompts the study of the mechanically stimulated allostery, the physical mechanism of which has not been established. By molecular dynamics simulation of a motor protein myosin, we found that a locally applied mechanical stimulus induces electrostatic potential change at distant regions, just like the piezoelectricity. This novel allosteric mechanism, "piezoelectric allostery", should be of particularly high value for mechanosensor/transducer proteins.

  13. Proteins : paradigms of complexity /

    SciTech Connect

    Frauenfelder, Hans,

    2001-01-01

    Proteins are the working machines of living systems. Directed by the DNA, of the order of a few hundred building blocks, selected from twenty different amino acids, are covalently linked into a linear polypeptide chain. In the proper environment, the chain folds into the working protein, often a globule of linear dimensions of a few nanometers. The biologist considers proteins units from which living systems are built. Many physical scientists look at them as systems in which the laws of complexity can be studied better than anywhere else. Some of the results of such studies will be sketched.

  14. Protein crystallography prescreen kit

    DOEpatents

    Segelke, Brent W.; Krupka, Heike I.; Rupp, Bernhard

    2005-07-12

    A kit for prescreening protein concentration for crystallization includes a multiplicity of vials, a multiplicity of pre-selected reagents, and a multiplicity of sample plates. The reagents and a corresponding multiplicity of samples of the protein in solutions of varying concentrations are placed on sample plates. The sample plates containing the reagents and samples are incubated. After incubation the sample plates are examined to determine which of the sample concentrations are too low and which the sample concentrations are too high. The sample concentrations that are optimal for protein crystallization are selected and used.

  15. Protein crystallography prescreen kit

    DOEpatents

    Segelke, Brent W.; Krupka, Heike I.; Rupp, Bernhard

    2007-10-02

    A kit for prescreening protein concentration for crystallization includes a multiplicity of vials, a multiplicity of pre-selected reagents, and a multiplicity of sample plates. The reagents and a corresponding multiplicity of samples of the protein in solutions of varying concentrations are placed on sample plates. The sample plates containing the reagents and samples are incubated. After incubation the sample plates are examined to determine which of the sample concentrations are too low and which the sample concentrations are too high. The sample concentrations that are optimal for protein crystallization are selected and used.

  16. Protein Crystal Malic Enzyme

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1992-01-01

    Malic Enzyme is a target protein for drug design because it is a key protein in the life cycle of intestinal parasites. After 2 years of effort on Earth, investigators were unable to produce any crystals that were of high enough quality and for this reason the structure of this important protein could not be determined. Crystals obtained from one STS-50 were of superior quality allowing the structure to be determined. This is just one example why access to space is so vital for these studies. Principal Investigator is Larry DeLucas.

  17. Protein Crystal Quality Studies

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1998-01-01

    Eddie Snell (standing), Post-Doctoral Fellow the National Research Council (NRC),and Marc Pusey of Marshall Space Flight Center (MSFC) use a reciprocal space mapping diffractometer for marcromolecular crystal quality studies. The diffractometer is used in mapping the structure of marcromolecules such as proteins to determine their structure and thus understand how they function with other proteins in the body. This is one of several analytical tools used on proteins crystalized on Earth and in space experiments. Photo credit: NASA/Marshall Space Flight Center (MSFC)

  18. Emerging fluorescent protein technologies.

    PubMed

    Enterina, Jhon Ralph; Wu, Lanshi; Campbell, Robert E

    2015-08-01

    Fluorescent proteins (FPs), such as the Aequorea jellyfish green FP (GFP), are firmly established as fundamental tools that enable a wide variety of biological studies. Specifically, FPs can serve as versatile genetically encoded markers for tracking proteins, organelles, or whole cells, and as the basis for construction of biosensors that can be used to visualize a growing array of biochemical events in cells and tissues. In this review we will focus on emerging applications of FPs that represent unprecedented new directions for the field. These emerging applications include new strategies for using FPs in biosensing applications, and innovative ways of using FPs to manipulate protein function or gene expression.

  19. Evolution of proteins.

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Dayhoff, M. O.

    1971-01-01

    The amino acid sequences of proteins from living organisms are dealt with. The structure of proteins is first discussed; the variation in this structure from one biological group to another is illustrated by the first halves of the sequences of cytochrome c, and a phylogenetic tree is derived from the cytochrome c data. The relative geological times associated with the events of this tree are discussed. Errors which occur in the duplication of cells during the evolutionary process are examined. Particular attention is given to evolution of mutant proteins, globins, ferredoxin, and transfer ribonucleic acids (tRNA's). Finally, a general outline of biological evolution is presented.

  20. [Phosphorylation of tau protein].

    PubMed

    Uchida, T; Ishiguro, K

    1990-05-01

    In aged human brain and particularly in Alzheimer's disease brain, paired helical filaments (PHFs) accumulate in the neuronal cell. Recently, it has been found that the highly phosphorylated tau protein, one of the microtubule-associated proteins (MAPs), is a component of PHF. The authors attempted to clarify the mechanism underlying the accumulation of PHF from the following two aspects; 1) What is the mechanism of phosphorylation of tau protein? 2) Is the highly phosphorylated tau protein capable of forming PHFs? From rat or bovine microtubule proteins we partially purified and characterized a novel protein kinase that specifically phosphorylated tau and MAP2 among many proteins in the brain extract, and which formed a PHF epitope on the phosphorylated human tau. This enzyme was one of the protein serine/threonine kinases and was independent of known second messengers. The phosphorylation of tau by this enzyme was stimulated by tubulin under the condition of microtubule formation, suggesting that the phosphorylation of tau could occur concomitantly with microtubule formation in the brain. Since this kinase was usually bound to tau but not directly to tubulin, the enzyme was associated with microtubules through tau. From these properties related to tau, this kinase is designated as tau protein kinase. The tau that been phosphorylated with this kinase using [gamma-32P]ATP as a phosphate donor, was digested by endoprotinase Lys-C to produce three labeled fragments, K1, K2 and K3. These three fragments were sequenced and the phosphorylation sites on tau by this kinase were identified. The K2 fragment overlapped with the tau-1 site known to be one of the phosphorylation site in PHF. This result strengthens the possibility that tau protein phosphorylated by tau protein kinase is incorporated into PHF. Tubulin binding sites on tau were located between K1 and K3 fragments, while K2 fragment was located in the neighboring to N-terminus of K1. No phosphorylated sites were

  1. Teaching resources. Protein phosphatases.

    PubMed

    Salton, Stephen R

    2005-03-01

    This Teaching Resource provides lecture notes and slides for a class covering the structure and function of protein phosphatases and is part of the course "Cell Signaling Systems: A Course for Graduate Students." The lecture begins with a discussion of the importance of phosphatases in physiology, recognized by the award of a Nobel Prize in 1992, and then proceeds to describe the two types of protein phosphatases: serine/threonine and tyrosine phosphatases. The information covered includes the structure, regulation, and substrate specificity of protein phosphatases, with an emphasis on their importance in disease and clinical settings.

  2. Electrochromatographic separation of proteins

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Basak, S. K.; Velayudhan, A.; Kohlmann, K.; Ladisch, M. R.; Mitchell, C. A. (Principal Investigator)

    1995-01-01

    We have developed a modified electrochromatography system which minimizes Joule heating at electric field strengths up to 125 V/cm. A non-linear equilibrium model is described which incorporates electrophoretic mobility, hydrodynamic flow velocity, and an electrically induced concentration polarization at the surface of the stationary phase. This model is able to provide useful estimates of protein retention time and velocity in a column packed with Sephadex gel and subjected to an electric field. A correlation of electrophoretic mobility of peptide and proteins with respect to their charge, molecular mass, and asymmetry enables the selection of solute target molecules for electrochromatographic separations. Good separation of protein mixtures have been obtained.

  3. (PCG) Protein Crystal Growth Canavalin

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1989-01-01

    (PCG) Protein Crystal Growth Canavalin. The major storage protein of leguminous plants and a major source of dietary protein for humans and domestic animals. It is studied in efforts to enhance nutritional value of proteins through protein engineerings. It is isolated from Jack Bean because of it's potential as a nutritional substance. Principal Investigator on STS-26 was Alex McPherson.

  4. Plant protein glycosylation

    PubMed Central

    Strasser, Richard

    2016-01-01

    Protein glycosylation is an essential co- and post-translational modification of secretory and membrane proteins in all eukaryotes. The initial steps of N-glycosylation and N-glycan processing are highly conserved between plants, mammals and yeast. In contrast, late N-glycan maturation steps in the Golgi differ significantly in plants giving rise to complex N-glycans with β1,2-linked xylose, core α1,3-linked fucose and Lewis A-type structures. While the essential role of N-glycan modifications on distinct mammalian glycoproteins is already well documented, we have only begun to decipher the biological function of this ubiquitous protein modification in different plant species. In this review, I focus on the biosynthesis and function of different protein N-linked glycans in plants. Special emphasis is given on glycan-mediated quality control processes in the ER and on the biological role of characteristic complex N-glycan structures. PMID:26911286

  5. Protein Model Database

    SciTech Connect

    Fidelis, K; Adzhubej, A; Kryshtafovych, A; Daniluk, P

    2005-02-23

    The phenomenal success of the genome sequencing projects reveals the power of completeness in revolutionizing biological science. Currently it is possible to sequence entire organisms at a time, allowing for a systemic rather than fractional view of their organization and the various genome-encoded functions. There is an international plan to move towards a similar goal in the area of protein structure. This will not be achieved by experiment alone, but rather by a combination of efforts in crystallography, NMR spectroscopy, and computational modeling. Only a small fraction of structures are expected to be identified experimentally, the remainder to be modeled. Presently there is no organized infrastructure to critically evaluate and present these data to the biological community. The goal of the Protein Model Database project is to create such infrastructure, including (1) public database of theoretically derived protein structures; (2) reliable annotation of protein model quality, (3) novel structure analysis tools, and (4) access to the highest quality modeling techniques available.

  6. Protein Colloidal Aggregation Project

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Oliva-Buisson, Yvette J. (Compiler)

    2014-01-01

    To investigate the pathways and kinetics of protein aggregation to allow accurate predictive modeling of the process and evaluation of potential inhibitors to prevalent diseases including cataract formation, chronic traumatic encephalopathy, Alzheimer's Disease, Parkinson's Disease and others.

  7. Fully automated protein purification

    PubMed Central

    Camper, DeMarco V.; Viola, Ronald E.

    2009-01-01

    Obtaining highly purified proteins is essential to begin investigating their functional and structural properties. The steps that are typically involved in purifying proteins can include an initial capture, intermediate purification, and a final polishing step. Completing these steps can take several days and require frequent attention to ensure success. Our goal was to design automated protocols that will allow the purification of proteins with minimal operator intervention. Separate methods have been produced and tested that automate the sample loading, column washing, sample elution and peak collection steps for ion-exchange, metal affinity, hydrophobic interaction and gel filtration chromatography. These individual methods are designed to be coupled and run sequentially in any order to achieve a flexible and fully automated protein purification protocol. PMID:19595984

  8. Protein fabrication automation

    PubMed Central

    Cox, J. Colin; Lape, Janel; Sayed, Mahmood A.; Hellinga, Homme W.

    2007-01-01

    Facile “writing” of DNA fragments that encode entire gene sequences potentially has widespread applications in biological analysis and engineering. Rapid writing of open reading frames (ORFs) for expressed proteins could transform protein engineering and production for protein design, synthetic biology, and structural analysis. Here we present a process, protein fabrication automation (PFA), which facilitates the rapid de novo construction of any desired ORF from oligonucleotides with low effort, high speed, and little human interaction. PFA comprises software for sequence design, data management, and the generation of instruction sets for liquid-handling robotics, a liquid-handling robot, a robust PCR scheme for gene assembly from synthetic oligonucleotides, and a genetic selection system to enrich correctly assembled full-length synthetic ORFs. The process is robust and scalable. PMID:17242375

  9. Interactive protein manipulation

    SciTech Connect

    SNCrivelli@lbl.gov

    2003-07-01

    We describe an interactive visualization and modeling program for the creation of protein structures ''from scratch''. The input to our program is an amino acid sequence -decoded from a gene- and a sequence of predicted secondary structure types for each amino acid-provided by external structure prediction programs. Our program can be used in the set-up phase of a protein structure prediction process; the structures created with it serve as input for a subsequent global internal energy minimization, or another method of protein structure prediction. Our program supports basic visualization methods for protein structures, interactive manipulation based on inverse kinematics, and visualization guides to aid a user in creating ''good'' initial structures.

  10. Recombinant Collagenlike Proteins

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Fertala, Andzej

    2007-01-01

    A group of collagenlike recombinant proteins containing high densities of biologically active sites has been invented. The method used to express these proteins is similar to a method of expressing recombinant procollagens and collagens described in U. S. Patent 5,593,859, "Synthesis of human procollagens and collagens in recombinant DNA systems." Customized collagenous proteins are needed for biomedical applications. In particular, fibrillar collagens are attractive for production of matrices needed for tissue engineering and drug delivery. Prior to this invention, there was no way of producing customized collagenous proteins for these and other applications. Heretofore, collagenous proteins have been produced by use of such biological systems as yeasts, bacteria, and transgenic animals and plants. These products are normal collagens that can also be extracted from such sources as tendons, bones, and hides. These products cannot be made to consist only of biologically active, specific amino acid sequences that may be needed for specific applications. Prior to this invention, it had been established that fibrillar collagens consist of domains that are responsible for such processes as interaction with cells, binding of growth factors, and interaction with a number of structural proteins present in the extracellular matrix. A normal collagen consists of a sequence of domains that can be represented by a corresponding sequence of labels, e.g., D1D2D3D4. A collagenlike protein of the present invention contains regions of collagen II that contain multiples of a single domain (e.g., D1D1D1D1 or D4D4D4D4) chosen for its specific biological activity. By virtue of the multiplicity of the chosen domain, the density of sites having that specific biological activity is greater than it is in a normal collagen. A collagenlike protein according to this invention can thus be made to have properties that are necessary for tissue engineering.

  11. Occupational protein contact dermatitis.

    PubMed

    Barbaud, Annick; Poreaux, Claire; Penven, Emmanuelle; Waton, Julie

    2015-01-01

    Occupational contact dermatitis is generally caused by haptens but can also be induced by proteins causing mainly immunological contact urticaria (ICU); chronic hand eczema in the context of protein contact dermatitis (PCD). In a monocentric retrospective study, from our database, only 31 (0.41%) of patients with contact dermatitis had positive skin tests with proteins: 22 had occupational PCD, 3 had non-occupational PCD, 5 occupational ICU and 1 cook had a neutrophilic fixed food eruption (NFFE) due to fish. From these results and analysis of literature, the characteristics of PCD can be summarized as follows. It is a chronic eczematous dermatitis, possibly exacerbated by work, suggestive if associated with inflammatory perionyxix and immediate erythema with pruritis, to be investigated when the patient resumes work after a period of interruption. Prick tests with the suspected protein-containing material are essential, as patch tests have negative results. In case of multisensitisation revealed by prick tests, it is advisable to analyse IgE against recombinant allergens. A history of atopy, found in 56 to 68% of the patients, has to be checked for. Most of the cases are observed among food-handlers but PCD can also be due to non-edible plants, latex, hydrolysed proteins or animal proteins. Occupational exposure to proteins can thus lead to the development of ICU. Reflecting hypersensitivity to very low concentrations of allergens, investigating ICU therefore requires caution and prick tests should be performed with a diluted form of the causative protein-containing product. Causes are food, especially fruit peel, non-edible plants, cosmetic products, latex, animals.

  12. Chirality and protein biosynthesis.

    PubMed

    Banik, Sindrila Dutta; Nandi, Nilashis

    2013-01-01

    Chirality is present at all levels of structural hierarchy of protein and plays a significant role in protein biosynthesis. The macromolecules involved in protein biosynthesis such as aminoacyl tRNA synthetase and ribosome have chiral subunits. Despite the omnipresence of chirality in the biosynthetic pathway, its origin, role in current pathway, and importance is far from understood. In this review we first present an introduction to biochirality and its relevance to protein biosynthesis. Major propositions about the prebiotic origin of biomolecules are presented with particular reference to proteins and nucleic acids. The problem of the origin of homochirality is unresolved at present. The chiral discrimination by enzymes involved in protein synthesis is essential for keeping the life process going. However, questions remained pertaining to the mechanism of chiral discrimination and concomitant retention of biochirality. We discuss the experimental evidence which shows that it is virtually impossible to incorporate D-amino acids in protein structures in present biosynthetic pathways via any of the two major steps of protein synthesis, namely aminoacylation and peptide bond formation reactions. Molecular level explanations of the stringent chiral specificity in each step are extended based on computational analysis. A detailed account of the current state of understanding of the mechanism of chiral discrimination during aminoacylation in the active site of aminoacyl tRNA synthetase and peptide bond formation in ribosomal peptidyl transferase center is presented. Finally, it is pointed out that the understanding of the mechanism of retention of enantiopurity has implications in developing novel enzyme mimetic systems and biocatalysts and might be useful in chiral drug design.

  13. Protein Nitrogen Determination

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nielsen, S. Suzanne

    The protein content of foods can be determined by numerous methods. The Kjeldahl method and the nitrogen combustion (Dumas) method for protein analysis are based on nitrogen determination. Both methods are official for the purposes of nutrition labeling of foods. While the Kjeldahl method has been used widely for over a hundred years, the recent availability of automated instrumentation for the Dumas method in many cases is replacing use of the Kjeldahl method.

  14. Colorimetric protein assay techniques.

    PubMed

    Sapan, C V; Lundblad, R L; Price, N C

    1999-04-01

    There has been an increase in the number of colorimetric assay techniques for the determination of protein concentration over the past 20 years. This has resulted in a perceived increase in sensitivity and accuracy with the advent of new techniques. The present review considers these advances with emphasis on the potential use of such technologies in the assay of biopharmaceuticals. The techniques reviewed include Coomassie Blue G-250 dye binding (the Bradford assay), the Lowry assay, the bicinchoninic acid assay and the biuret assay. It is shown that each assay has advantages and disadvantages relative to sensitivity, ease of performance, acceptance in the literature, accuracy and reproducibility/coefficient of variation/laboratory-to-laboratory variation. A comparison of the use of several assays with the same sample population is presented. It is suggested that the most critical issue in the use of a chromogenic protein assay for the characterization of a biopharmaceutical is the selection of a standard for the calibration of the assay; it is crucial that the standard be representative of the sample. If it is not possible to match the standard with the sample from the perspective of protein composition, then it is preferable to use an assay that is not sensitive to the composition of the protein such as a micro-Kjeldahl technique, quantitative amino acid analysis or the biuret assay. In a complex mixture it might be inappropriate to focus on a general method of protein determination and much more informative to use specific methods relating to the protein(s) of particular interest, using either specific assays or antibody-based methods. The key point is that whatever method is adopted as the 'gold standard' for a given protein, this method needs to be used routinely for calibration.

  15. Protein conducting nanopores

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Harsman, Anke; Krüger, Vivien; Bartsch, Philipp; Honigmann, Alf; Schmidt, Oliver; Rao, Sanjana; Meisinger, Christof; Wagner, Richard

    2010-11-01

    About 50% of the cellular proteins have to be transported into or across cellular membranes. This transport is an essential step in the protein biosynthesis. In eukaryotic cells secretory proteins are transported into the endoplasmic reticulum before they are transported in vesicles to the plasma membrane. Almost all proteins of the endosymbiotic organelles chloroplasts and mitochondria are synthesized on cytosolic ribosomes and posttranslationally imported. Genetic, biochemical and biophysical approaches led to rather detailed knowledge on the composition of the translocon-complexes which catalyze the membrane transport of the preproteins. Comprehensive concepts on the targeting and membrane transport of polypeptides emerged, however little detail on the molecular nature and mechanisms of the protein translocation channels comprising nanopores has been achieved. In this paper we will highlight recent developments of the diverse protein translocation systems and focus particularly on the common biophysical properties and functions of the protein conducting nanopores. We also provide a first analysis of the interaction between the genuine protein conducting nanopore Tom40SC as well as a mutant Tom40SC (\\mathrm {S}_{54} \\to E ) containing an additional negative charge at the channel vestibule and one of its native substrates, CoxIV, a mitochondrial targeting peptide. The polypeptide induced a voltage-dependent increase in the frequency of channel closure of Tom40SC corresponding to a voltage-dependent association rate, which was even more pronounced for the Tom40SC S54E mutant. The corresponding dwelltime reflecting association/transport of the peptide could be determined with \\bar {t}_{\\mathrm {off}} \\cong 1.1 ms for the wildtype, whereas the mutant Tom40SC S54E displayed a biphasic dwelltime distribution (\\bar {t}_{\\mathrm {off}}^1 \\cong 0.4 ms \\bar {t}_{\\mathrm {off}}^2 \\cong 4.6 ms).

  16. Fast protein folding kinetics

    PubMed Central

    Gelman, Hannah; Gruebele, Martin

    2014-01-01

    Fast folding proteins have been a major focus of computational and experimental study because they are accessible to both techniques: they are small and fast enough to be reasonably simulated with current computational power, but have dynamics slow enough to be observed with specially developed experimental techniques. This coupled study of fast folding proteins has provided insight into the mechanisms which allow some proteins to find their native conformation well less than 1 ms and has uncovered examples of theoretically predicted phenomena such as downhill folding. The study of fast folders also informs our understanding of even “slow” folding processes: fast folders are small, relatively simple protein domains and the principles that govern their folding also govern the folding of more complex systems. This review summarizes the major theoretical and experimental techniques used to study fast folding proteins and provides an overview of the major findings of fast folding research. Finally, we examine the themes that have emerged from studying fast folders and briefly summarize their application to protein folding in general as well as some work that is left to do. PMID:24641816

  17. Motor proteins 1: kinesins.

    PubMed

    Bloom, G S; Endow, S A

    1995-01-01

    Progress regarding the kinesins is now being made at a rapid and accelerating rate. The in vivo-functions, and biophysical and enzymatic properties of kinesin itself are being explored at ever increasing levels of detail. The kinesin-related proteins now number several dozen, and although more is known about primary structure than function for most of the proteins, this trend is already reversing. For example, knowledge about the kinesin-related protein, ncd, is expanding rapidly, and more is already known about its three-dimensional structure than is known for kinesin heavy chain. This volume presents a comprehensive review of the major published works on kinesin and kinesin-related proteins. Hopefully, this manuscript will complement other recent review articles [17, 20, 25, 37, 60-62, 67, 69, 75, 85-88, 231, 233, 238, 244, 269-271, 281, 282, 292] or books [49, 227, 293] that have focused on more selective aspects of the kinesin family, or have been aimed more generally at MT motor proteins. In line with the stated purpose of the Protein Profile series, annual updates of the review on the kinesins are planned for at least the next few years.

  18. Protein phosphorylation and photorespiration.

    PubMed

    Hodges, M; Jossier, M; Boex-Fontvieille, E; Tcherkez, G

    2013-07-01

    Photorespiration allows the recycling of carbon atoms of 2-phosphoglycolate produced by ribulose-1,5-bisphosphate carboxylase/oxygenase (Rubisco) oxygenase activity, as well as the removal of potentially toxic metabolites. The photorespiratory pathway takes place in the light, encompasses four cellular compartments and interacts with several other metabolic pathways and functions. Therefore, the regulation of this cycle is probably of paramount importance to plant metabolism, however, our current knowledge is poor. To rapidly respond to changing conditions, proteins undergo a number of different post-translational modifications that include acetylation, methylation and ubiquitylation, but protein phosphorylation is probably the most common. The reversible covalent addition of a phosphate group to a specific amino acid residue allows the modulation of protein function, such as activity, subcellular localisation, capacity to interact with other proteins and stability. Recent data indicate that many photorespiratory enzymes can be phosphorylated, and thus it seems that the photorespiratory cycle is, in part, regulated by protein phosphorylation. In this review, the known phosphorylation sites of each Arabidopsis thaliana photorespiratory enzyme and several photorespiratory-associated proteins are described and discussed. A brief account of phosphoproteomic protocols is also given since the published data compiled in this review are the fruit of this approach.

  19. Disease specific protein corona

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rahman, M.; Mahmoudi, M.

    2015-03-01

    It is now well accepted that upon their entrance into the biological environments, the surface of nanomaterials would be covered by various biomacromolecules (e.g., proteins and lipids). The absorption of these biomolecules, so called `protein corona', onto the surface of (nano)biomaterials confers them a new `biological identity'. Although the formation of protein coronas on the surface of nanoparticles has been widely investigated, there are few reports on the effect of various diseases on the biological identity of nanoparticles. As the type of diseases may tremendously changes the composition of the protein source (e.g., human plasma/serum), one can expect that amount and composition of associated proteins in the corona composition may be varied, in disease type manner. Here, we show that corona coated silica and polystyrene nanoparticles (after interaction with in the plasma of the healthy individuals) could induce unfolding of fibrinogen, which promotes release of the inflammatory cytokines. However, no considerable releases of inflammatory cytokines were observed for corona coated graphene sheets. In contrast, the obtained corona coated silica and polystyrene nanoparticles from the hypofibrinogenemia patients could not induce inflammatory cytokine release where graphene sheets do. Therefore, one can expect that disease-specific protein coronas can provide a novel approach for applying nanomedicine to personalized medicine, improving diagnosis and treatment of different diseases tailored to the specific conditions and circumstances.

  20. Cotton and Protein Interactions

    SciTech Connect

    Goheen, Steven C.; Edwards, J. V.; Rayburn, Alfred R.; Gaither, Kari A.; Castro, Nathan J.

    2006-06-30

    The adsorbent properties of important wound fluid proteins and cotton cellulose are reviewed. This review focuses on the adsorption of albumin to cotton-based wound dressings and some chemically modified derivatives targeted for chronic wounds. Adsorption of elastase in the presence of albumin was examined as a model to understand the interactive properties of these wound fluid components with cotton fibers. In the chronic non-healing wound, elastase appears to be over-expressed, and it digests tissue and growth factors, interfering with the normal healing process. Albumin is the most prevalent protein in wound fluid, and in highly to moderately exudative wounds, it may bind significantly to the fibers of wound dressings. Thus, the relative binding properties of both elastase and albumin to wound dressing fibers are of interest in the design of more effective wound dressings. The present work examines the binding of albumin to two different derivatives of cotton, and quantifies the elastase binding to the same derivatives following exposure of albumin to the fiber surface. An HPLC adsorption technique was employed coupled with a colorimetric enzyme assay to quantify the relative binding properties of albumin and elastase to cotton. The results of wound protein binding are discussed in relation to the porosity and surface chemistry interactions of cotton and wound proteins. Studies are directed to understanding the implications of protein adsorption phenomena in terms of fiber-protein models that have implications for rationally designing dressings for chronic wounds.

  1. Food protein sources.

    PubMed

    Pirie, N W

    1976-07-01

    Work on food, planned by the U.M. (Use and Management) Section of the U.K. committe, was limited to sources of protein because we agreed that more problems calling for research were likely to arise in getting adequate supplies of protein than of other types of food. Deer meat can be produced on land too rough and exposed for sheep; parts of the work on their metabolism and food requirements necessitated building a mobile laboratory. The manner in which the nutritive value of maize is affected by changes in the ratios in which the component proteins are present, stimulated similar studies on barley and groundnut. There is good quality protein in coconuts and leaves but its use in human food is restricted by the presence of fibre. Methods for separating protein from fibre and other deleterious components were improved. In cooperation with scientists in India and Nigeria, the potential yield of protein-deficient foods. e.g. cassava, were 'ennobled' by growing micro-organisms on them with the addition of a cheap source of nitrogen.

  2. Protein-Protein Interfaces in Viral Capsids Are Structurally Unique.

    PubMed

    Cheng, Shanshan; Brooks, Charles L

    2015-11-06

    Viral capsids exhibit elaborate and symmetrical architectures of defined sizes and remarkable mechanical properties not seen with cellular macromolecular complexes. Given the uniqueness of the higher-order organization of viral capsid proteins in the virosphere, we explored the question of whether the patterns of protein-protein interactions within viral capsids are distinct from those in generic protein complexes. Our comparative analysis involving a non-redundant set of 551 inter-subunit interfaces in viral capsids from VIPERdb and 20,014 protein-protein interfaces in non-capsid protein complexes from the Protein Data Bank found 418 generic protein-protein interfaces that share similar physicochemical patterns with some protein-protein interfaces in the capsid set, using the program PCalign we developed for comparing protein-protein interfaces. This overlap in the structural space of protein-protein interfaces is significantly small, with a p-value <0.0001, based on a permutation test on the total set of protein-protein interfaces. Furthermore, the generic protein-protein interfaces that bear similarity in their spatial and chemical arrangement with capsid ones are mostly small in size with fewer than 20 interfacial residues, which results from the relatively limited choices of natural design for small interfaces rather than having significant biological implications in terms of functional relationships. We conclude based on this study that protein-protein interfaces in viral capsids are non-representative of patterns in the smaller, more compact cellular protein complexes. Our finding highlights the design principle of building large biological containers from repeated, self-assembling units and provides insights into specific targets for antiviral drug design for improved efficacy.

  3. Computational Analysis of the Hypothalamic Control of Food Intake

    PubMed Central

    Tabe-Bordbar, Shayan; Anastasio, Thomas J.

    2016-01-01

    Food-intake control is mediated by a heterogeneous network of different neural subtypes, distributed over various hypothalamic nuclei and other brain structures, in which each subtype can release more than one neurotransmitter or neurohormone. The complexity of the interactions of these subtypes poses a challenge to understanding their specific contributions to food-intake control, and apparent consistencies in the dataset can be contradicted by new findings. For example, the growing consensus that arcuate nucleus neurons expressing Agouti-related peptide (AgRP neurons) promote feeding, while those expressing pro-opiomelanocortin (POMC neurons) suppress feeding, is contradicted by findings that low AgRP neuron activity and high POMC neuron activity can be associated with high levels of food intake. Similarly, the growing consensus that GABAergic neurons in the lateral hypothalamus suppress feeding is contradicted by findings suggesting the opposite. Yet the complexity of the food-intake control network admits many different network behaviors. It is possible that anomalous associations between the responses of certain neural subtypes and feeding are actually consistent with known interactions, but their effect on feeding depends on the responses of the other neural subtypes in the network. We explored this possibility through computational analysis. We made a computer model of the interactions between the hypothalamic and other neural subtypes known to be involved in food-intake control, and optimized its parameters so that model behavior matched observed behavior over an extensive test battery. We then used specialized computational techniques to search the entire model state space, where each state represents a different configuration of the responses of the units (model neural subtypes) in the network. We found that the anomalous associations between the responses of certain hypothalamic neural subtypes and feeding are actually consistent with the known structure

  4. Protein crystal growth in space

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bugg, C. E.; Clifford, D. W.

    1987-01-01

    The advantages of protein crystallization in space, and the applications of protein crystallography to drug design, protein engineering, and the design of synthetic vaccines are examined. The steps involved in using protein crystallography to determine the three-dimensional structure of a protein are discussed. The growth chamber design and the hand-held apparatus developed for protein crystal growth by vapor diffusion techniques (hanging-drop method) are described; the experimental data from the four Shuttle missions are utilized to develop hardware for protein crystal growth in space and to evaluate the effects of gravity on protein crystal growth.

  5. Diet-induced obesity causes ghrelin resistance in reward processing tasks.

    PubMed

    Lockie, Sarah H; Dinan, Tara; Lawrence, Andrew J; Spencer, Sarah J; Andrews, Zane B

    2015-12-01

    Diet-induced obesity (DIO) causes ghrelin resistance in hypothalamic Agouti-related peptide (AgRP) neurons. However, ghrelin promotes feeding through actions at both the hypothalamus and mesolimbic dopamine reward pathways. Therefore, we hypothesized that DIO would also establish ghrelin resistance in the ventral tegmental area (VTA), a major site of dopaminergic cell bodies important in reward processing. We observed reduced sucrose and saccharin consumption in Ghrelin KO vs Ghrelin WT mice. Moreover, DIO reduced saccharin consumption relative to chow-fed controls. These data suggest that the deletion of ghrelin and high fat diet both cause anhedonia. To assess if these are causally related, we tested whether DIO caused ghrelin resistance in a classic model of drug reward, conditioned place preference (CPP). Chow or high fat diet (HFD) mice were conditioned with ghrelin (1mg/kg in 10ml/kg ip) in the presence or absence of food in the conditioning chamber. We observed a CPP to ghrelin in chow-fed mice but not in HFD-fed mice. HFD-fed mice still showed a CPP for cocaine (20mg/kg), indicating that they maintained the ability to develop conditioned behaviour. The absence of food availability during ghrelin conditioning sessions induced a conditioned place aversion, an effect that was still present in both chow and HFD mice. Bilateral intra-VTA ghrelin injection (0.33μg/μl in 0.5μl) robustly increased feeding in both chow-fed and high fat diet (HFD)-fed mice; however, this was correlated with body weight only in the chow-fed mice. Our results suggest that DIO causes ghrelin resistance albeit not directly in the VTA. We suggest there is impaired ghrelin sensitivity in upstream pathways regulating reward pathways, highlighting a functional role for ghrelin linking appropriate metabolic sensing with reward processing.

  6. Role of neuropeptides in appetite regulation and obesity--a review.

    PubMed

    Arora, Sarika; Anubhuti

    2006-12-01

    Obesity represents the most prevalent nutritional problem worldwide which in the long run predisposes to development of diabetes mellitus, hypertension, endometrial carcinoma, osteoarthritis, gall stones and cardiovascular diseases. Despite significant reductions in dietary fat consumption, the prevalence of obesity is on a rise and is taking on pandemic proportions. Obesity develops when energy intake exceeds energy expenditure over time. Recently, a close evolutionary relationship between the peripheral and hypothalamic neuropeptides has become apparent. The hypothalamus being the central feeding organ mediates regulation of short-term and long-term dietary intake via synthesis of various orexigenic and anorectic neuropeptides. The structure and function of many hypothalamic peptides (neuropeptide Y (NPY), melanocortins, agouti-related peptide (AGRP), cocaine and amphetamine regulated transcript (CART), melanin concentrating hormone (MCH), orexins have been characterized in rodent models The peripheral neuropeptides such as cholecystokinin (CCK), ghrelin, peptide YY (PYY3-36), amylin, bombesin regulate important gastrointestinal functions such as motility, secretion, absorption, provide feedback to the central nervous system on availability of nutrients and may play a part in regulating food intake. The pharmacological potential of several endogenous peripheral peptides released prior to, during and/or after feeding are being explored. Long-term regulation is provided by the main circulating hormones leptin and insulin. These systems implicated in hypothalamic appetite regulation provide potential targets for treatment of obesity which could potentially pass into clinical development in the next 5 years. This review summarizes various effects and interrelationship of these central and peripheral neuropeptides in metabolism, obesity and their potential role as targets for treatment of obesity.

  7. Sex differences in the physiology of eating

    PubMed Central

    Asarian, Lori

    2013-01-01

    Hypothalamic-pituitary-gonadal (HPG) axis function fundamentally affects the physiology of eating. We review sex differences in the physiological and pathophysiological controls of amounts eaten in rats, mice, monkeys, and humans. These controls result from interactions among genetic effects, organizational effects of reproductive hormones (i.e., permanent early developmental effects), and activational effects of these hormones (i.e., effects dependent on hormone levels). Male-female sex differences in the physiology of eating involve both organizational and activational effects of androgens and estrogens. An activational effect of estrogens decreases eating 1) during the periovulatory period of the ovarian cycle in rats, mice, monkeys, and women and 2) tonically between puberty and reproductive senescence or ovariectomy in rats and monkeys, sometimes in mice, and possibly in women. Estrogens acting on estrogen receptor-α (ERα) in the caudal medial nucleus of the solitary tract appear to mediate these effects in rats. Androgens, prolactin, and other reproductive hormones also affect eating in rats. Sex differences in eating are mediated by alterations in orosensory capacity and hedonics, gastric mechanoreception, ghrelin, CCK, glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1), glucagon, insulin, amylin, apolipoprotein A-IV, fatty-acid oxidation, and leptin. The control of eating by central neurochemical signaling via serotonin, MSH, neuropeptide Y, Agouti-related peptide (AgRP), melanin-concentrating hormone, and dopamine is modulated by HPG function. Finally, sex differences in the physiology of eating may contribute to human obesity, anorexia nervosa, and binge eating. The variety and physiological importance of what has been learned so far warrant intensifying basic, translational, and clinical research on sex differences in eating. PMID:23904103

  8. Ac-Trp-DPhe(p-I)-Arg-Trp-NH2, a 250-Fold Selective Melanocortin-4 Receptor (MC4R) Antagonist over the Melanocortin-3 Receptor (MC3R), Affects Energy Homeostasis in Male and Female Mice Differently.

    PubMed

    Lensing, Cody J; Adank, Danielle N; Doering, Skye R; Wilber, Stacey L; Andreasen, Amy; Schaub, Jay W; Xiang, Zhimin; Haskell-Luevano, Carrie

    2016-09-21

    The melanocortin-4 receptor (MC4R) has been indicated as a therapeutic target for metabolic disorders such as anorexia, cachexia, and obesity. The current study investigates the in vivo effects on energy homeostasis of a 15 nM MC4R antagonist SKY2-23-7, Ac-Trp-DPhe(p-I)-Arg-Trp-NH2, that is a 3700 nM melanocortin-3 receptor (MC3R) antagonist with minimal MC3R and MC4R agonist activity. When monitoring both male and female mice in TSE metabolic cages, sex-specific responses were observed in food intake, respiratory exchange ratio (RER), and energy expenditure. A 7.5 nmol dose of SKY2-23-7 increased food intake, increased RER, and trended toward decreasing energy expenditure in male mice. However, this compound had minimal effect on female mice's food intake and RER at the 7.5 nmol dose. A 2.5 nmol dose of SKY2-23-7 significantly increased female food intake, RER, and energy expenditure while having a minimal effect on male mice at this dose. The observed sex differences of SKY2-23-7 administration result in the discovery of a novel chemical probe for elucidating the molecular mechanisms of the sexual dimorphism present within the melanocortin pathway. To further explore the melanocortin sexual dimorphism, hypothalamic gene expression was examined. The mRNA expression of the MC3R and proopiomelanocortin (POMC) were not significantly different between sexes. However, the expression of agouti-related peptide (AGRP) was significantly higher in female mice which may be a possible mechanism for the sex-specific effects observed with SKY2-23-7.

  9. Role of Mitochondrial Dysfunction in Hypertension and Obesity.

    PubMed

    Lahera, Vicente; de Las Heras, Natalia; López-Farré, Antonio; Manucha, Walter; Ferder, León

    2017-02-01

    Mitochondria are essential for the maintenance of normal physiological function of tissue cells. Mitochondria are subject to dynamic processes in order to establish a control system related to survival or cell death and adaptation to changes in the metabolic environment of cells. Mitochondrial dynamics includes fusion and fission processes, biogenesis, and mitophagy. Modifications of mitochondrial dynamics in organs involved in energy metabolism such as the pancreas, liver, skeletal muscle, and white adipose tissue could be of relevance for the development of insulin resistance, obesity, and type 2 diabetes. Mitochondrial dynamics and the factors involved in its regulation are also critical for neuronal development, survival, and function. Modifications in mitochondrial dynamics in either agouti-related peptide (AgRP) or pro-opiomelanocortin (POMC), circuits which regulates feeding behavior, are related to changes of food intake, energy balance, and obesity development. Activation of the sympathetic nervous system has been considered as a crucial point in the pathogenesis of hypertension among obese individuals and it also plays a key role in cardiac remodeling. Hypertension-related cardiac hypertrophy is associated with changes in metabolic substrate utilization, dysfunction of the electron transport chain, and ATP synthesis. Alterations in both mitochondrial dynamics and ROS production have been associated with endothelial dysfunction, development of hypertension, and cardiac hypertrophy. Finally, it might be postulated that alterations of mitochondrial dynamics in white adipose tissue could contribute to the development and maintenance of hypertension in obesity situations through leptin overproduction. Leptin, together with insulin, will induce activation of sympathetic nervous system with consequences at renal, vascular, and cardiac levels, driving to sodium retention, hypertension, and left ventricular hypertrophy. Moreover, both leptin and insulin will

  10. Growth hormone modulates hypothalamic inflammation in long-lived pituitary dwarf mice.

    PubMed

    Sadagurski, Marianna; Landeryou, Taylor; Cady, Gillian; Kopchick, John J; List, Edward O; Berryman, Darlene E; Bartke, Andrzej; Miller, Richard A

    2015-12-01

    Mice in which the genes for growth hormone (GH) or GH receptor (GHR(-/-) ) are disrupted from conception are dwarfs, possess low levels of IGF-1 and insulin, have low rates of cancer and diabetes, and are extremely long-lived. Median longevity is also increased in mice with deletion of hypothalamic GH-releasing hormone (GHRH), which leads to isolated GH deficiency. The remarkable extension of longevity in hypopituitary Ames dwarf mice can be reversed by a 6-week course of GH injections started at the age of 2 weeks. Here, we demonstrate that mutations that interfere with GH production or response, in the Snell dwarf, Ames dwarf, or GHR(-/-) mice lead to reduced formation of both orexigenic agouti-related peptide (AgRP) and anorexigenic proopiomelanocortin (POMC) projections to the main hypothalamic projection areas: the arcuate nucleus (ARH), paraventricular nucleus (PVH), and dorsomedial nucleus (DMH). These mutations also reduce hypothalamic inflammation in 18-month-old mice. GH injections, between 2 and 8 weeks of age, reversed both effects in Ames dwarf mice. Disruption of GHR specifically in liver (LiGHRKO), a mutation that reduces circulating IGF-1 but does not lead to lifespan extension, had no effect on hypothalamic projections or inflammation, suggesting an effect of GH, rather than peripheral IGF-1, on hypothalamic development. Hypothalamic leptin signaling, as monitored by induction of pStat3, is not impaired by GHR deficiency. Together, these results suggest that early-life disruption of GH signaling produces long-term hypothalamic changes that may contribute to the longevity of GH-deficient and GH-resistant mice.

  11. Parallel Computational Protein Design

    PubMed Central

    Zhou, Yichao; Donald, Bruce R.; Zeng, Jianyang

    2016-01-01

    Computational structure-based protein design (CSPD) is an important problem in computational biology, which aims to design or improve a prescribed protein function based on a protein structure template. It provides a practical tool for real-world protein engineering applications. A popular CSPD method that guarantees to find the global minimum energy solution (GMEC) is to combine both dead-end elimination (DEE) and A* tree search algorithms. However, in this framework, the A* search algorithm can run in exponential time in the worst case, which may become the computation bottleneck of large-scale computational protein design process. To address this issue, we extend and add a new module to the OSPREY program that was previously developed in the Donald lab [1] to implement a GPU-based massively parallel A* algorithm for improving protein design pipeline. By exploiting the modern GPU computational framework and optimizing the computation of the heuristic function for A* search, our new program, called gOSPREY, can provide up to four orders of magnitude speedups in large protein design cases with a small memory overhead comparing to the traditional A* search algorithm implementation, while still guaranteeing the optimality. In addition, gOSPREY can be configured to run in a bounded-memory mode to tackle the problems in which the conformation space is too large and the global optimal solution cannot be computed previously. Furthermore, the GPU-based A* algorithm implemented in the gOSPREY program can be combined with the state-of-the-art rotamer pruning algorithms such as iMinDEE [2] and DEEPer [3] to also consider continuous backbone and side-chain flexibility. PMID:27914056

  12. Modeling Mercury in Proteins

    SciTech Connect

    Smith, Jeremy C; Parks, Jerry M

    2016-01-01

    Mercury (Hg) is a naturally occurring element that is released into the biosphere both by natural processes and anthropogenic activities. Although its reduced, elemental form Hg(0) is relatively non-toxic, other forms such as Hg2+ and, in particular, its methylated form, methylmercury, are toxic, with deleterious effects on both ecosystems and humans. Microorganisms play important roles in the transformation of mercury in the environment. Inorganic Hg2+ can be methylated by certain bacteria and archaea to form methylmercury. Conversely, bacteria also demethylate methylmercury and reduce Hg2+ to relatively inert Hg(0). Transformations and toxicity occur as a result of mercury interacting with various proteins. Clearly, then, understanding the toxic effects of mercury and its cycling in the environment requires characterization of these interactions. Computational approaches are ideally suited to studies of mercury in proteins because they can provide a detailed picture and circumvent issues associated with toxicity. Here we describe computational methods for investigating and characterizing how mercury binds to proteins, how inter- and intra-protein transfer of mercury is orchestrated in biological systems, and how chemical reactions in proteins transform the metal. We describe quantum chemical analyses of aqueous Hg(II), which reveal critical factors that determine ligand binding propensities. We then provide a perspective on how we used chemical reasoning to discover how microorganisms methylate mercury. We also highlight our combined computational and experimental studies of the proteins and enzymes of the mer operon, a suite of genes that confers mercury resistance in many bacteria. Lastly, we place work on mercury in proteins in the context of what is needed for a comprehensive multi-scale model of environmental mercury cycling.

  13. Benchtop Detection of Proteins

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Scardelletti, Maximilian C.; Varaljay, Vanessa

    2007-01-01

    A process, and a benchtop-scale apparatus for implementing the process, have been developed to detect proteins associated with specific microbes in water. The process and apparatus may also be useful for detection of proteins in other, more complex liquids. There may be numerous potential applications, including monitoring lakes and streams for contamination, testing of blood and other bodily fluids in medical laboratories, and testing for microbial contamination of liquids in restaurants and industrial food-processing facilities. A sample can be prepared and analyzed by use of this process and apparatus within minutes, whereas an equivalent analysis performed by use of other processes and equipment can often take hours to days. The process begins with the conjugation of near-infrared-fluorescent dyes to antibodies that are specific to a particular protein. Initially, the research has focused on using near-infrared dyes to detect antigens or associated proteins in solution, which has proven successful vs. microbial cells, and streamlining the technique in use for surface protein detection on microbes would theoretically render similar results. However, it is noted that additional work is needed to transition protein-based techniques to microbial cell detection. Consequently, multiple such dye/antibody pairs could be prepared to enable detection of multiple selected microbial species, using a different dye for each species. When excited by near-infrared light of a suitable wavelength, each dye fluoresces at a unique longer wavelength that differs from those of the other dyes, enabling discrimination among the various species. In initial tests, the dye/antibody pairs are mixed into a solution suspected of containing the selected proteins, causing the binding of the dye/antibody pairs to such suspect proteins that may be present. The solution is then run through a microcentrifuge that includes a membrane that acts as a filter in that it retains the dye/antibody/protein

  14. Purine inhibitors of protein kinases, G proteins and polymerases

    DOEpatents

    Gray, Nathanael S.; Schultz, Peter; Kim, Sung-Hou; Meijer, Laurent

    2001-07-03

    The present invention relates to purine analogs that inhibit, inter alia, protein kinases, G-proteins and polymerases. In addition, the present invention relates to methods of using such purine analogs to inhibit protein kinases, G-proteins, polymerases and other cellular processes and to treat cellular proliferative diseases.

  15. Heat Capacity in Proteins

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Prabhu, Ninad V.; Sharp, Kim A.

    2005-05-01

    Heat capacity (Cp) is one of several major thermodynamic quantities commonly measured in proteins. With more than half a dozen definitions, it is the hardest of these quantities to understand in physical terms, but the richest in insight. There are many ramifications of observed Cp changes: The sign distinguishes apolar from polar solvation. It imparts a temperature (T) dependence to entropy and enthalpy that may change their signs and which of them dominate. Protein unfolding usually has a positive ΔCp, producing a maximum in stability and sometimes cold denaturation. There are two heat capacity contributions, from hydration and protein-protein interactions; which dominates in folding and binding is an open question. Theoretical work to date has dealt mostly with the hydration term and can account, at least semiquantitatively, for the major Cp-related features: the positive and negative Cp of hydration for apolar and polar groups, respectively; the convergence of apolar group hydration entropy at T ≈ 112°C; the decrease in apolar hydration Cp with increasing T; and the T-maximum in protein stability and cold denaturation.

  16. The ras superfamily proteins.

    PubMed

    Chardin, P

    1988-07-01

    Several recent discoveries indicate that the ras genes, frequently activated to a transforming potential in some human tumours, belong to a large family that can be divided into three main branches: the first branch represented by the ras, ral and rap genes; the second branch, by the rho genes; and the third branch, by the rab genes. The C-terminal end of the encoded proteins always includes a cystein, which may become fatty-acylated, suggesting a sub-membrane localization. The ras superfamily proteins share four regions of high homology corresponding to the GTP binding site; however, even in these regions, significant differences are found, suggesting that the various proteins may possess slightly different biochemical properties. Recent reports show that some of these proteins play an essential role in the control of physical processes such as cell motility, membrane ruffling, endocytosis and exocytosis. Nevertheless, the characterization of the proteins directly interacting with the ras or ras-related gene-products will be required to precisely understand their function.

  17. [Protein metabolism in vegans].

    PubMed

    Okuda, T; Miyoshi-Nishimura, H; Makita, T; Sugawa-Katayama, Y; Hazama, T; Simizu, T; Yamaguchi, Y

    1994-11-01

    To elucidate the mechanisms of adaptation to a low-energy and low-protein vegan diet, we carried out dietary surveys and nitrogen balance studies five times during one year on two women and a man who ate raw brown rice, raw green vegetables, three kinds of raw roots, fruit and salt daily. Individual subjects modified this vegan diet slightly. The mean daily energy intake of the subjects was 18, 14, and 32 kcal/kg, of body weight. The loss of body weight was about 10% of the initial level. The daily nitrogen balance was -32, -33, and -11 mg N/kg of body weight. In spite of the negative nitrogen balance, the results of routine clinical tests, initially normal, did not change with the vegan diet. Ten months after the start of the vegan diet, the subjects were given 15N urea orally. The incorporation of 15N into serum proteins suggested that these subjects could utilize urea nitrogen for body protein synthesis. The level of 15N in serum proteins was close to the level in other normal adult men on a low-protein diet with adequate energy for 2 weeks.

  18. Protein Dynamics in Enzymology

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brooks, , III

    2001-03-01

    Enzymes carry-out the chemical activity essential for living processes by providing particular structural arrangements of chemically functional moieties through the structure of their constituent proteins. They are suggested to be optimized through evolution to specifically bind the transition state for the chemical processes they participate in, thereby enhancing the rate of these chemical events by 6-12 orders of magnitude. However, proteins are malleable and fluctuating many-body systems and may also utilize coupling between motional processes with catalysis to regulate or promote these processes. Our studies are aimed at exploring the hypothesis that motions of the protein couple distant regions of the molecule to assist catalytic processes. We demonstrate, through the use of molecular simulations, that strongly coupled motions occur in regions of protein molecules distant in sequence and space from each other, and the enzyme’s active site, when the protein is in a reactant state. Further, we find that the presence of this coupling disappears in complexes no longer reactive-competent, i.e., for product configurations and mutant sequences. The implications of these findings and aspects of evolutionary relationships and mutational studies which support the coupling hypothesis will be discussed in the context of our work on dihydrofolate reductase.

  19. Protein folding and de novo protein design for biotechnological applications

    PubMed Central

    Khoury, George A.; Smadbeck, James; Kieslich, Chris A.; Floudas, Christodoulos A.

    2014-01-01

    In the post-genomic era, the medical/biological fields are advancing faster than ever. However, before the power of full-genome sequencing can be fully realized, the connection between amino acid sequence and protein structure, known as the protein folding problem, needs to be elucidated. The protein folding problem remains elusive, with significant difficulties still arising when modeling amino acid sequences lacking an identifiable template. Understanding protein folding will allow for unforeseen advances in protein design, often referred as the inverse protein folding problem. Despite challenges in protein folding, de novo protein design has recently demonstrated significant success via computational techniques. We review advances and challenges in protein structure prediction and de novo protein design, and highlight their interplay in successful biotechnological applications. PMID:24268901

  20. Matricellular proteins and biomaterials.

    PubMed

    Morris, Aaron H; Kyriakides, Themis R

    2014-07-01

    Biomaterials are essential to modern medicine as components of reconstructive implants, implantable sensors, and vehicles for localized drug delivery. Advances in biomaterials have led to progression from simply making implants that are nontoxic to making implants that are specifically designed to elicit particular functions within the host. The interaction of implants and the extracellular matrix during the foreign body response is a growing area of concern for the field of biomaterials, because it can lead to implant failure. Expression of matricellular proteins is modulated during the foreign body response and these proteins interact with biomaterials. The design of biomaterials to specifically alter the levels of matricellular proteins surrounding implants provides a new avenue for the design and fabrication of biomimetic biomaterials.

  1. Advanced protein formulations

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Wei

    2015-01-01

    It is well recognized that protein product development is far more challenging than that for small-molecule drugs. The major challenges include inherent sensitivity to different types of stresses during the drug product manufacturing process, high rate of physical and chemical degradation during long-term storage, and enhanced aggregation and/or viscosity at high protein concentrations. In the past decade, many novel formulation concepts and technologies have been or are being developed to address these product development challenges for proteins. These concepts and technologies include use of uncommon/combination of formulation stabilizers, conjugation or fusion with potential stabilizers, site-specific mutagenesis, and preparation of nontraditional types of dosage forms—semiaqueous solutions, nonfreeze-dried solid formulations, suspensions, and other emerging concepts. No one technology appears to be mature, ideal, and/or adequate to address all the challenges. These gaps will likely remain in the foreseeable future and need significant efforts for ultimate resolution. PMID:25858529

  2. Thermal hysteresis proteins.

    PubMed

    Barrett, J

    2001-02-01

    Extreme environments present a wealth of biochemical adaptations. Thermal hysteresis proteins (THPs) have been found in vertebrates, invertebrates, plants, bacteria and fungi and are able to depress the freezing point of water (in the presence of ice crystals) in a non-colligative manner by binding to the surface of nascent ice crystals. The THPs comprise a disparate group of proteins with a variety of tertiary structures and often no common sequence similarities or structural motifs. Different THPs bind to different faces of the ice crystal, and no single mechanism has been proposed to account for THP ice binding affinity and specificity. Experimentally THPs have been used in the cryopreservation of tissues and cells and to induce cold tolerance in freeze susceptible organisms. THPs represent a remarkable example of parallel and convergent evolution with different proteins being adapted for an anti-freeze role.

  3. Thermodynamics of Protein Aggregation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Osborne, Kenneth L.; Barz, Bogdan; Bachmann, Michael; Strodel, Birgit

    Amyloid protein aggregation characterizes many neurodegenerative disorders, including Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, and Creutz- feldt-Jakob disease. Evidence suggests that amyloid aggregates may share similar aggregation pathways, implying simulation of full-length amyloid proteins is not necessary for understanding amyloid formation. In this study we simulate GNNQQNY, the N-terminal prion-determining domain of the yeast protein Sup35 to investigate the thermodynamics of structural transitions during aggregation. We use a coarse-grained model with replica-exchange molecular dynamics to investigate the association of 3-, 6-, and 12-chain GNNQQNY systems and we determine the aggregation pathway by studying aggregation states of GN- NQQNY. We find that the aggregation of the hydrophilic GNNQQNY sequence is mainly driven by H-bond formation, leading to the formation of /3-sheets from the very beginning of the assembly process. Condensation (aggregation) and ordering take place simultaneously, which is underpinned by the occurrence of a single heat capacity peak only.

  4. Protein crystallization studies

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lyne, James Evans

    1996-01-01

    The Structural Biology laboratory at NASA Marshall Spaceflight Center uses x-ray crystallographic techniques to conduct research into the three-dimensional structure of a wide variety of proteins. A major effort in the laboratory involves an ongoing study of human serum albumin (the principal protein in human plasma) and its interaction with various endogenous substances and pharmaceutical agents. Another focus is on antigenic and functional proteins from several pathogenic organisms including the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) and the widespread parasitic genus, Schistosoma. My efforts this summer have been twofold: first, to identify clinically significant drug interactions involving albumin binding displacement and to initiate studies of the three-dimensional structure of albumin complexed with these agents, and secondly, to establish collaborative efforts to extend the lab's work on human pathogens.

  5. Protein Crystal Serum Albumin

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1998-01-01

    As the most abundant protein in the circulatory system albumin contributes 80% to colloid osmotic blood pressure. Albumin is also chiefly responsible for the maintenance of blood pH. It is located in every tissue and bodily secretion, with extracellular protein comprising 60% of total albumin. Perhaps the most outstanding property of albumin is its ability to bind reversibly to an incredible variety of ligands. It is widely accepted in the pharmaceutical industry that the overall distribution, metabolism, and efficiency of many drugs are rendered ineffective because of their unusually high affinity for this abundant protein. An understanding of the chemistry of the various classes of pharmaceutical interactions with albumin can suggest new approaches to drug therapy and design. Principal Investigator: Dan Carter/New Century Pharmaceuticals

  6. Tracking protein aggregate interactions

    PubMed Central

    Bartz, Jason C; Nilsson, K Peter R

    2011-01-01

    Amyloid fibrils share a structural motif consisting of highly ordered β-sheets aligned perpendicular to the fibril axis.1, 2 At each fibril end, β-sheets provide a template for recruiting and converting monomers.3 Different amyloid fibrils often co-occur in the same individual, yet whether a protein aggregate aids or inhibits the assembly of a heterologous protein is unclear. In prion disease, diverse prion aggregate structures, known as strains, are thought to be the basis of disparate disease phenotypes in the same species expressing identical prion protein sequences.4–7 Here we explore the interactions reported to occur when two distinct prion strains occur together in the central nervous system. PMID:21597336

  7. Bioinformatics and Moonlighting Proteins

    PubMed Central

    Hernández, Sergio; Franco, Luís; Calvo, Alejandra; Ferragut, Gabriela; Hermoso, Antoni; Amela, Isaac; Gómez, Antonio; Querol, Enrique; Cedano, Juan

    2015-01-01

    Multitasking or moonlighting is the capability of some proteins to execute two or more biochemical functions. Usually, moonlighting proteins are experimentally revealed by serendipity. For this reason, it would be helpful that Bioinformatics could predict this multifunctionality, especially because of the large amounts of sequences from genome projects. In the present work, we analyze and describe several approaches that use sequences, structures, interactomics, and current bioinformatics algorithms and programs to try to overcome this problem. Among these approaches are (a) remote homology searches using Psi-Blast, (b) detection of functional motifs and domains, (c) analysis of data from protein–protein interaction databases (PPIs), (d) match the query protein sequence to 3D databases (i.e., algorithms as PISITE), and (e) mutation correlation analysis between amino acids by algorithms as MISTIC. Programs designed to identify functional motif/domains detect mainly the canonical function but usually fail in the detection of the moonlighting one, Pfam and ProDom being the best methods. Remote homology search by Psi-Blast combined with data from interactomics databases (PPIs) has the best performance. Structural information and mutation correlation analysis can help us to map the functional sites. Mutation correlation analysis can only be used in very specific situations – it requires the existence of multialigned family protein sequences – but can suggest how the evolutionary process of second function acquisition took place. The multitasking protein database MultitaskProtDB (http://wallace.uab.es/multitask/), previously published by our group, has been used as a benchmark for the all of the analyses. PMID:26157797

  8. Antioxidants and protein oxidation.

    PubMed

    Griffiths, H R

    2000-11-01

    Proteins are susceptible to oxidation by reactive oxygen species, where the type of damage induced is characteristic of the denaturing species. The induction of protein carbonyls is a widely applied biomarker, arising from primary oxidative insult. However, when applied to complex biological and pathological conditions it can be subject to interference from lipid, carbohydrate and DNA oxidation products. More recently, interest has focused on the analysis of specific protein bound oxidised amino acids. Of the 22 amino acids, aromatic and sulphydryl containing residues have been regarded as being particularly susceptible to oxidative modification, with L-DOPA from tyrosine, ortho-tyrosine from phenylalanine; sulphoxides and disulphides from methionine and cysteine respectively; and kynurenines from tryptophan. Latterly, the identification of valine and leucine hydroxides, reduced from hydroperoxide intermediates, has been described and applied. In order to examine the nature of oxidative damage and protective efficacy of antioxidants the markers must be thoroughly evaluated for dosimetry in vitro following damage by specific radical species. Antioxidant protection against formation of the biomarker should be demonstrated in vitro. Quantification of biomarkers in proteins from normal subjects should be within the limits of detection of any analytical procedure. Further to this, the techniques for isolation and hydrolysis of specific proteins should demonstrate that in vitro oxidation is minimised. There is a need for the development of standards for quality assurance material to standardise procedures between laboratories. At present, antioxidant effects on protein oxidation in vivo are limited to animal studies, where dietary antioxidants have been reported to reduce dityrosine formation during rat exercise training. Two studies on humans have been reported last year. The further application of these methods to human studies is indicated, where the quality of the

  9. Discovery of binding proteins for a protein target using protein-protein docking-based virtual screening.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Changsheng; Tang, Bo; Wang, Qian; Lai, Luhua

    2014-10-01

    Target structure-based virtual screening, which employs protein-small molecule docking to identify potential ligands, has been widely used in small-molecule drug discovery. In the present study, we used a protein-protein docking program to identify proteins that bind to a specific target protein. In the testing phase, an all-to-all protein-protein docking run on a large dataset was performed. The three-dimensional rigid docking program SDOCK was used to examine protein-protein docking on all protein pairs in the dataset. Both the binding affinity and features of the binding energy landscape were considered in the scoring function in order to distinguish positive binding pairs from negative binding pairs. Thus, the lowest docking score, the average Z-score, and convergency of the low-score solutions were incorporated in the analysis. The hybrid scoring function was optimized in the all-to-all docking test. The docking method and the hybrid scoring function were then used to screen for proteins that bind to tumor necrosis factor-α (TNFα), which is a well-known therapeutic target for rheumatoid arthritis and other autoimmune diseases. A protein library containing 677 proteins was used for the screen. Proteins with scores among the top 20% were further examined. Sixteen proteins from the top-ranking 67 proteins were selected for experimental study. Two of these proteins showed significant binding to TNFα in an in vitro binding study. The results of the present study demonstrate the power and potential application of protein-protein docking for the discovery of novel binding proteins for specific protein targets.

  10. SAP family proteins.

    PubMed

    Fujita, A; Kurachi, Y

    2000-03-05

    Thus far, five members including Dlg, SAP97/hDlg, SAP90/PSD-95, SAP102, and PSD-93/chapsyn110 which belong to SAP family have been identified. Recent studies have revealed that these proteins play important roles in the localization and function of glutamate receptors and K(+) channels. Although most of them have been reported to be localized to the synapse, only one member, SAP97, is expressed also in the epithelial cells. In this review, we have summarized structural characters of SAP family proteins and discuss their functions in neurons and epithelial cells.

  11. Protein Biosynthesis in Mitochondria

    PubMed Central

    Kuzmenko, A. V.; Levitskii, S. A.; Vinogradova, E. N.; Atkinson, G. C.; Hauryliuk, V.; Zenkin, N.; Kamenski, P. A.

    2013-01-01

    Translation, that is biosynthesis of polypeptides in accordance with information encoded in the genome, is one of the most important processes in the living cell, and it has been in the spotlight of international research for many years. The mechanisms of protein biosynthesis in bacteria and in the eukaryotic cytoplasm are now understood in great detail. However, significantly less is known about translation in eukaryotic mitochondria, which is characterized by a number of unusual features. In this review, we summarize current knowledge about mitochondrial translation in different organisms while paying special attention to the aspects of this process that differ from cytoplasmic protein biosynthesis. PMID:24228873

  12. Congenital protein hypoglycosylation diseases

    PubMed Central

    Sparks, Susan E

    2012-01-01

    Glycosylation is an essential process by which sugars are attached to proteins and lipids. Complete lack of glycosylation is not compatible with life. Because of the widespread function of glycosylation, inherited disorders of glycosylation are multisystemic. Since the identification of the first defect on N-linked glycosylation in the 1980s, there are over 40 different congenital protein hypoglycosylation diseases. This review will include defects of N-linked glycosylation, O-linked glycosylation and disorders of combined N- and O-linked glycosylation. PMID:23776380

  13. [Protein-losing enteropathy].

    PubMed

    Parfenov, A I; Krums, L M

    2017-01-01

    Protein-losing enteropathy (PLE) is a rare complication of intestinal diseases. Its main manifestation is hypoproteinemic edema. The diagnosis of PLE is based on the verification of protein loss into the intestinal lumen, by determining fecal α1-antitrypsin concentration and clearance. The localization of the affected colonic segment is clarified using radiologic and endoscopic techniques. The mainstay of treatment for PLE is a fat-free diet enriched with medium-chain triglycerides. Surgical resection of the affected segment of the colon may be the treatment of choice for severe hypoproteinemia resistant to drug therapy.

  14. DELIVERY OF THERAPEUTIC PROTEINS

    PubMed Central

    Pisal, Dipak S.; Kosloski, Matthew P.; Balu-Iyer, Sathy V.

    2009-01-01

    The safety and efficacy of protein therapeutics are limited by three interrelated pharmaceutical issues, in vitro and in vivo instability, immunogenicity and shorter half-lives. Novel drug modifications for overcoming these issues are under investigation and include covalent attachment of poly(ethylene glycol) (PEG), polysialic acid, or glycolic acid, as well as developing new formulations containing nanoparticulate or colloidal systems (e.g. liposomes, polymeric microspheres, polymeric nanoparticles). Such strategies have the potential to develop as next generation protein therapeutics. This review includes a general discussion on these delivery approaches. PMID:20049941

  15. Protein biosynthesis in mitochondria.

    PubMed

    Kuzmenko, A V; Levitskii, S A; Vinogradova, E N; Atkinson, G C; Hauryliuk, V; Zenkin, N; Kamenski, P A

    2013-08-01

    Translation, that is biosynthesis of polypeptides in accordance with information encoded in the genome, is one of the most important processes in the living cell, and it has been in the spotlight of international research for many years. The mechanisms of protein biosynthesis in bacteria and in the eukaryotic cytoplasm are now understood in great detail. However, significantly less is known about translation in eukaryotic mitochondria, which is characterized by a number of unusual features. In this review, we summarize current knowledge about mitochondrial translation in different organisms while paying special attention to the aspects of this process that differ from cytoplasmic protein biosynthesis.

  16. Protein energy malnutrition.

    PubMed

    Grover, Zubin; Ee, Looi C

    2009-10-01

    Protein energy malnutrition (PEM) is a common problem worldwide and occurs in both developing and industrialized nations. In the developing world, it is frequently a result of socioeconomic, political, or environmental factors. In contrast, protein energy malnutrition in the developed world usually occurs in the context of chronic disease. There remains much variation in the criteria used to define malnutrition, with each method having its own limitations. Early recognition, prompt management, and robust follow up are critical for best outcomes in preventing and treating PEM.

  17. An introduction to protein moonlighting.

    PubMed

    Jeffery, Constance J

    2014-12-01

    Moonlighting proteins comprise a class of multifunctional proteins in which a single polypeptide chain performs multiple physiologically relevant biochemical or biophysical functions. Almost 300 proteins have been found to moonlight. The known examples of moonlighting proteins include diverse types of proteins, including receptors, enzymes, transcription factors, adhesins and scaffolds, and different combinations of functions are observed. Moonlighting proteins are expressed throughout the evolutionary tree and function in many different biochemical pathways. Some moonlighting proteins can perform both functions simultaneously, but for others, the protein's function changes in response to changes in the environment. The diverse examples of moonlighting proteins already identified, and the potential benefits moonlighting proteins might provide to the organism, such as through coordinating cellular activities, suggest that many more moonlighting proteins are likely to be found. Continuing studies of the structures and functions of moonlighting proteins will aid in predicting the functions of proteins identified through genome sequencing projects, in interpreting results from proteomics experiments, in understanding how different biochemical pathways interact in systems biology, in annotating protein sequence and structure databases, in studies of protein evolution and in the design of proteins with novel functions.

  18. Protein domain connectivity and essentiality

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    da F. Costa, L.; Rodrigues, F. A.; Travieso, G.

    2006-10-01

    Protein-protein interactions can be properly modeled as scale-free complex networks, while the lethality of proteins has been correlated with the node degrees, therefore defining a lethality-centrality rule. In this work the authors revisit this relevant problem by focusing attention not on proteins as a whole, but on their functional domains, which are ultimately responsible for their binding potential. Four networks are considered: the original protein-protein interaction network, its randomized version, and two domain networks assuming different lethality hypotheses. By using formal statistical analysis, they show that the correlation between connectivity and essentiality is higher for domains than for proteins.

  19. Conformation Distributions in Adsorbed Proteins.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Meuse, Curtis W.; Hubbard, Joseph B.; Vrettos, John S.; Smith, Jackson R.; Cicerone, Marcus T.

    2007-03-01

    While the structural basis of protein function is well understood in the biopharmaceutical and biotechnology industries, few methods for the characterization and comparison of protein conformation distributions are available. New methods capable of measuring the stability of protein conformations and the integrity of protein-protein, protein-ligand and protein-surface interactions both in solution and on surfaces are needed to help the development of protein-based products. We are developing infrared spectroscopy methods for the characterization and comparison of molecular conformation distributions in monolayers and in solutions. We have extracted an order parameter describing the orientational and conformational variations of protein functional groups around the average molecular values from a single polarized spectrum. We will discuss the development of these methods and compare them to amide hydrogen/deuterium exchange methods for albumin in solution and on different polymer surfaces to show that our order parameter is related to protein stability.

  20. NextGen protein design

    PubMed Central

    Regan, Lynne

    2014-01-01

    Protein engineering is at an exciting stage because designed protein–protein interactions are being used in many applications. For instance, three designed proteins are now in clinical trials. Although there have been many successes over the last decade, protein engineering still faces numerous challenges. Often, designs do not work as anticipated and they still require substantial redesign. The present review focuses on the successes, the challenges and the limitations of rational protein design today. PMID:24059497

  1. Conserved herpesvirus protein kinases

    PubMed Central

    Gershburg, Edward; Pagano, Joseph S.

    2008-01-01

    Conserved herpesviral protein kinases (CHPKs) are a group of enzymes conserved throughout all subfamilies of Herpesviridae. Members of this group are serine/threonine protein kinases that are likely to play a conserved role in viral infection by interacting with common host cellular and viral factors; however along with a conserved role, individual kinases may have unique functions in the context of viral infection in such a way that they are only partially replaceable even by close homologues. Recent studies demonstrated that CHPKs are crucial for viral infection and suggested their involvement in regulation of numerous processes at various infection steps (primary infection, nuclear egress, tegumentation), although the mechanisms of this regulation remain unknown. Notwithstanding, recent advances in discovery of new CHPK targets, and studies of CHPK knockout phenotypes have raised their attractiveness as targets for antiviral therapy. A number of compounds have been shown to inhibit the activity of human cytomegalovirus (HCMV)-encoded UL97 protein kinase and exhibit a pronounced antiviral effect, although the same compounds are inactive against Epstein-Barr Virus (EBV)-encoded protein kinase BGLF4, illustrating the fact that low homology between the members of this group complicates development of compounds targeting the whole group, and suggesting that individualized, structure-based inhibitor design will be more effective. Determination of CHPK structures will greatly facilitate this task. PMID:17881303

  2. Protein states and proteinquakes.

    PubMed Central

    Ansari, A; Berendzen, J; Bowne, S F; Frauenfelder, H; Iben, I E; Sauke, T B; Shyamsunder, E; Young, R D

    1985-01-01

    After photodissociation of carbon monoxide bound to myoglobin, the protein relaxes to the deoxy equilibrium structure in a quake-like motion. Investigation of the proteinquake and of related intramolecular equilibrium motions shows that states and motions have a hierarchical glass-like structure. PMID:3860839

  3. Dynamics of protein conformations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stepanova, Maria

    2010-10-01

    A novel theoretical methodology is introduced to identify dynamic structural domains and analyze local flexibility in proteins. The methodology employs a multiscale approach combining identification of essential collective coordinates based on the covariance analysis of molecular dynamics trajectories, construction of the Mori projection operator with these essential coordinates, and analysis of the corresponding generalized Langevin equations [M.Stepanova, Phys.Rev.E 76(2007)051918]. Because the approach employs a rigorous theory, the outcomes are physically transparent: the dynamic domains are associated with regions of relative rigidity in the protein, whereas off-domain regions are relatively soft. This also allows scoring the flexibility in the macromolecule with atomic-level resolution [N.Blinov, M.Berjanskii, D.S.Wishart, and M.Stepanova, Biochemistry, 48(2009)1488]. The applications include the domain coarse-graining and characterization of conformational stability in protein G and prion proteins. The results are compared with published NMR experiments. Potential applications for structural biology, bioinformatics, and drug design are discussed.

  4. Proteins of Excitable Membranes

    PubMed Central

    Nachmansohn, David

    1969-01-01

    Excitable membranes have the special ability of changing rapidly and reversibly their permeability to ions, thereby controlling the ion movements that carry the electric currents propagating nerve impulses. Acetylcholine (ACh) is the specific signal which is released by excitation and is recognized by a specific protein, the ACh-receptor; it induces a conformational change, triggering off a sequence of reactions resulting in increased permeability. The hydrolysis of ACh by ACh-esterase restores the barrier to ions. The enzymes hydrolyzing and forming ACh and the receptor protein are present in the various types of excitable membranes. Properties of the two proteins directly associated with electrical activity, receptor and esterase, will be described in this and subsequent lectures. ACh-esterase has been shown to be located within the excitable membranes. Potent enzyme inhibitors block electrical activity demonstrating the essential role in this function. The enzyme has been recently crystallized and some protein properties will be described. The monocellular electroplax preparation offers a uniquely favorable material for analyzing the properties of the ACh-receptor and its relation to function. The essential role of the receptor in electrical activity has been demonstrated with specific receptor inhibitors. Recent data show the basically similar role of ACh in the axonal and junctional membranes; the differences of electrical events and pharmacological actions are due to variations of shape, structural organization, and environment. PMID:19873642

  5. Cellulose binding domain proteins

    SciTech Connect

    Shoseyov, Oded; Shpiegl, Itai; Goldstein, Marc; Doi, Roy

    1998-01-01

    A cellulose binding domain (CBD) having a high affinity for crystalline cellulose and chitin is disclosed, along with methods for the molecular cloning and recombinant production thereof. Fusion products comprising the CBD and a second protein are likewise described. A wide range of applications are contemplated for both the CBD and the fusion products, including drug delivery, affinity separations, and diagnostic techniques.

  6. Chaos in protein dynamics.

    PubMed

    Braxenthaler, M; Unger, R; Auerbach, D; Given, J A; Moult, J

    1997-12-01

    MD simulations, currently the most detailed description of the dynamic evolution of proteins, are based on the repeated solution of a set of differential equations implementing Newton's second law. Many such systems are known to exhibit chaotic behavior, i.e., very small changes in initial conditions are amplified exponentially and lead to vastly different, inherently unpredictable behavior. We have investigated the response of a protein fragment in an explicit solvent environment to very small perturbations of the atomic positions (10(-3)-10(-9) A). Independent of the starting conformation (native-like, compact, extended), perturbed dynamics trajectories deviated rapidly, leading to conformations that differ by approximately 1 A RMSD within 1-2 ps. Furthermore, introducing the perturbation more than 1-2 ps before a significant conformational transition leads to a loss of the transition in the perturbed trajectories. We present evidence that the observed chaotic behavior reflects physical properties of the system rather than numerical instabilities of the calculation and discuss the implications for models of protein folding and the use of MD as a tool to analyze protein folding pathways.

  7. Tuber Storage Proteins

    PubMed Central

    SHEWRY, PETER R.

    2003-01-01

    A wide range of plants are grown for their edible tubers, but five species together account for almost 90 % of the total world production. These are potato (Solanum tuberosum), cassava (Manihot esculenta), sweet potato (Ipomoea batatus), yams (Dioscorea spp.) and taro (Colocasia, Cyrtosperma and Xanthosoma spp.). All of these, except cassava, contain groups of storage proteins, but these differ in the biological properties and evolutionary relationships. Thus, patatin from potato exhibits activity as an acylhydrolase and esterase, sporamin from sweet potato is an inhibitor of trypsin, and dioscorin from yam is a carbonic anhydrase. Both sporamin and dioscorin also exhibit antioxidant and radical scavenging activity. Taro differs from the other three crops in that it contains two major types of storage protein: a trypsin inhibitor related to sporamin and a mannose‐binding lectin. These characteristics indicate that tuber storage proteins have evolved independently in different species, which contrasts with the highly conserved families of storage proteins present in seeds. Furthermore, all exhibit biological activities which could contribute to resistance to pests, pathogens or abiotic stresses, indicating that they may have dual roles in the tubers. PMID:12730067

  8. Tuber storage proteins.

    PubMed

    Shewry, Peter R

    2003-06-01

    A wide range of plants are grown for their edible tubers, but five species together account for almost 90 % of the total world production. These are potato (Solanum tuberosum), cassava (Manihot esculenta), sweet potato (Ipomoea batatus), yams (Dioscorea spp.) and taro (Colocasia, Cyrtosperma and Xanthosoma spp.). All of these, except cassava, contain groups of storage proteins, but these differ in the biological properties and evolutionary relationships. Thus, patatin from potato exhibits activity as an acylhydrolase and esterase, sporamin from sweet potato is an inhibitor of trypsin, and dioscorin from yam is a carbonic anhydrase. Both sporamin and dioscorin also exhibit antioxidant and radical scavenging activity. Taro differs from the other three crops in that it contains two major types of storage protein: a trypsin inhibitor related to sporamin and a mannose-binding lectin. These characteristics indicate that tuber storage proteins have evolved independently in different species, which contrasts with the highly conserved families of storage proteins present in seeds. Furthermore, all exhibit biological activities which could contribute to resistance to pests, pathogens or abiotic stresses, indicating that they may have dual roles in the tubers.

  9. Protein thin film machines.

    PubMed

    Federici, Stefania; Oliviero, Giulio; Hamad-Schifferli, Kimberly; Bergese, Paolo

    2010-12-01

    We report the first example of microcantilever beams that are reversibly driven by protein thin film machines fueled by cycling the salt concentration of the surrounding solution. We also show that upon the same salinity stimulus the drive can be completely reversed in its direction by introducing a surface coating ligand. Experimental results are throughout discussed within a general yet simple thermodynamic model.

  10. Protein Crystal Bovine Insulin

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1991-01-01

    The comparison of protein crystal, Bovine Insulin space-grown (left) and earth-grown (right). Facilitates the incorporation of glucose into cells. In diabetics, there is either a decrease in or complete lack of insulin, thereby leading to several harmful complications. Principal Investigator is Larry DeLucas.

  11. 24-hour urine protein

    MedlinePlus

    ... your doctor may be able to order a test that is done on just one urine sample (protein-to-creatinine ratio). Normal Results The normal value is less than 100 milligrams per day or less than 10 milligrams per deciliter ... of these tests. Normal value ranges may vary slightly among different ...

  12. Protein Requirements during Aging

    PubMed Central

    Courtney-Martin, Glenda; Ball, Ronald O.; Pencharz, Paul B.; Elango, Rajavel

    2016-01-01

    Protein recommendations for elderly, both men and women, are based on nitrogen balance studies. They are set at 0.66 and 0.8 g/kg/day as the estimated average requirement (EAR) and recommended dietary allowance (RDA), respectively, similar to young adults. This recommendation is based on single linear regression of available nitrogen balance data obtained at test protein intakes close to or below zero balance. Using the indicator amino acid oxidation (IAAO) method, we estimated the protein requirement in young adults and in both elderly men and women to be 0.9 and 1.2 g/kg/day as the EAR and RDA, respectively. This suggests that there is no difference in requirement on a gender basis or on a per kg body weight basis between younger and older adults. The requirement estimates however are ~40% higher than the current protein recommendations on a body weight basis. They are also 40% higher than our estimates in young men when calculated on the basis of fat free mass. Thus, current recommendations may need to be re-assessed. Potential rationale for this difference includes a decreased sensitivity to dietary amino acids and increased insulin resistance in the elderly compared with younger individuals. PMID:27529275

  13. Cellulose binding domain proteins

    DOEpatents

    Shoseyov, O.; Shpiegl, I.; Goldstein, M.; Doi, R.

    1998-11-17

    A cellulose binding domain (CBD) having a high affinity for crystalline cellulose and chitin is disclosed, along with methods for the molecular cloning and recombinant production. Fusion products comprising the CBD and a second protein are likewise described. A wide range of applications are contemplated for both the CBD and the fusion products, including drug delivery, affinity separations, and diagnostic techniques. 16 figs.

  14. Protein crystal growth

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2001-01-01

    Atomic force microscopy uses laser technology to reveal a defect, a double-screw dislocation, on the surface of this crystal of canavalin, a major source of dietary protein for humans and domestic animals. When a crystal grows, attachment kinetics and transport kinetics are competing for control of the molecules. As a molecule gets close to the crystal surface, it has to attach properly for the crystal to be usable. NASA has funded investigators to look at those attachment kinetics from a theoretical standpoint and an experimental standpoint. Dr. Alex McPherson of the University of California, Irvine, is one of those investigators. He uses X-ray diffraction and atomic force microscopy in his laboratory to answer some of the many questions about how protein crystals grow. Atomic force microscopy provides a means of looking at how individual molecules are added to the surface of growing protein crystals. This helps McPherson understand the kinetics of protein crystal growth. McPherson asks, How fast do crystals grow? What are the forces involved? Investigators funded by NASA have clearly shown that such factors as the level of supersaturation and the rate of growth all affect the habit [characteristic arrangement of facets] of the crystal and the defects that occur in the crystal.

  15. Protein specific polymeric immunomicrospheres

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rembaum, Alan (Inventor); Yen, Shiao-Ping S. (Inventor); Dreyer, William J. (Inventor)

    1980-01-01

    Small, round, bio-compatible microspheres capable of covalently bonding proteins and having a uniform diameter below about 3500 A are prepared by substantially instantaneously initiating polymerization of an aqueous emulsion containing no more than 35% total monomer including an acrylic monomer substituted with a covalently bondable group such as hydroxyl, amino or carboxyl and a minor amount of a cross-linking agent.

  16. Protein-protein interactions: methods for detection and analysis.

    PubMed Central

    Phizicky, E M; Fields, S

    1995-01-01

    The function and activity of a protein are often modulated by other proteins with which it interacts. This review is intended as a practical guide to the analysis of such protein-protein interactions. We discuss biochemical methods such as protein affinity chromatography, affinity blotting, coimmunoprecipitation, and cross-linking; molecular biological methods such as protein probing, the two-hybrid system, and phage display: and genetic methods such as the isolation of extragenic suppressors, synthetic mutants, and unlinked noncomplementing mutants. We next describe how binding affinities can be evaluated by techniques including protein affinity chromatography, sedimentation, gel filtration, fluorescence methods, solid-phase sampling of equilibrium solutions, and surface plasmon resonance. Finally, three examples of well-characterized domains involved in multiple protein-protein interactions are examined. The emphasis of the discussion is on variations in the approaches, concerns in evaluating the results, and advantages and disadvantages of the techniques. PMID:7708014

  17. Monobodies and other synthetic binding proteins for expanding protein science.

    PubMed

    Sha, Fern; Salzman, Gabriel; Gupta, Ankit; Koide, Shohei

    2017-03-01

    Synthetic binding proteins are constructed using nonantibody molecular scaffolds. Over the last two decades, in-depth structural and functional analyses of synthetic binding proteins have improved combinatorial library designs and selection strategies, which have resulted in potent platforms that consistently generate binding proteins to diverse targets with affinity and specificity that rival those of antibodies. Favorable attributes of synthetic binding proteins, such as small size, freedom from disulfide bond formation and ease of making fusion proteins, have enabled their unique applications in protein science, cell biology and beyond. Here, we review recent studies that illustrate how synthetic binding proteins are powerful probes that can directly link structure and function, often leading to new mechanistic insights. We propose that synthetic proteins will become powerful standard tools in diverse areas of protein science, biotechnology and medicine.

  18. Production of specific antibodies against protein A fusion proteins.

    PubMed Central

    Löwenadler, B; Nilsson, B; Abrahmsén, L; Moks, T; Ljungqvist, L; Holmgren, E; Paleus, S; Josephson, S; Philipson, L; Uhlén, M

    1986-01-01

    The gene for Staphylococcal protein A was fused to the coding sequence of bacterial beta-galactosidase, alkaline phosphatase and human insulin-like growth factor I (IGF-I). The fusion proteins, expressed in bacteria, were purified by affinity chromatography on IgG-Sepharose and antibodies were raised in rabbits. All three fusion proteins elicited specific antibodies against both the inserted protein sequences and the protein A moiety. In the case of IGF-I, the protein A moiety in the fusion protein may act as an adjuvant since native IGF-I alone is a poor immunogen. The results suggest that the protein A fusion system can be used for efficient antibody production against peptides or proteins expressed from cloned or synthetic genes. To facilitate such gene fusions a set of optimized vectors have been constructed. Images Fig. 2. Fig. 3. Fig. 4. Fig. 6. PMID:3096719

  19. Accessory proteins for heterotrimeric G-proteins in the kidney

    PubMed Central

    Park, Frank

    2015-01-01

    Heterotrimeric G-proteins play a fundamentally important role in regulating signal transduction pathways in the kidney. Accessory proteins are being identified as direct binding partners for heterotrimeric G-protein α or βγ subunits to promote more diverse mechanisms by which G-protein signaling is controlled. In some instances, accessory proteins can modulate the signaling magnitude, localization, and duration following the activation of cell membrane-associated receptors. Alternatively, accessory proteins complexed with their G-protein α or βγ subunits can promote non-canonical models of signaling activity within the cell. In this review, we will highlight the expression profile, localization and functional importance of these newly identified accessory proteins to control the function of select G-protein subunits under normal and various disease conditions observed in the kidney. PMID:26300785

  20. Exploring NMR ensembles of calcium binding proteins: Perspectives to design inhibitors of protein-protein interactions

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background Disrupting protein-protein interactions by small organic molecules is nowadays a promising strategy employed to block protein targets involved in different pathologies. However, structural changes occurring at the binding interfaces make difficult drug discovery processes using structure-based drug design/virtual screening approaches. Here we focused on two homologous calcium binding proteins, calmodulin and human centrin 2, involved in different cellular functions via protein-protein interactions, and known to undergo important conformational changes upon ligand binding. Results In order to find suitable protein conformations of calmodulin and centrin for further structure-based drug design/virtual screening, we performed in silico structural/energetic analysis and molecular docking of terphenyl (a mimicking alpha-helical molecule known to inhibit protein-protein interactions of calmodulin) into X-ray and NMR ensembles of calmodulin and centrin. We employed several scoring methods in order to find the best protein conformations. Our results show that docking on NMR structures of calmodulin and centrin can be very helpful to take into account conformational changes occurring at protein-protein interfaces. Conclusions NMR structures of protein-protein complexes nowadays available could efficiently be exploited for further structure-based drug design/virtual screening processes employed to design small molecule inhibitors of protein-protein interactions. PMID:21569443

  1. Protein Molecular Structures, Protein SubFractions, and Protein Availability Affected by Heat Processing: A Review

    SciTech Connect

    Yu,P.

    2007-01-01

    The utilization and availability of protein depended on the types of protein and their specific susceptibility to enzymatic hydrolysis (inhibitory activities) in the gastrointestine and was highly associated with protein molecular structures. Studying internal protein structure and protein subfraction profiles leaded to an understanding of the components that make up a whole protein. An understanding of the molecular structure of the whole protein was often vital to understanding its digestive behavior and nutritive value in animals. In this review, recently obtained information on protein molecular structural effects of heat processing was reviewed, in relation to protein characteristics affecting digestive behavior and nutrient utilization and availability. The emphasis of this review was on (1) using the newly advanced synchrotron technology (S-FTIR) as a novel approach to reveal protein molecular chemistry affected by heat processing within intact plant tissues; (2) revealing the effects of heat processing on the profile changes of protein subfractions associated with digestive behaviors and kinetics manipulated by heat processing; (3) prediction of the changes of protein availability and supply after heat processing, using the advanced DVE/OEB and NRC-2001 models, and (4) obtaining information on optimal processing conditions of protein as intestinal protein source to achieve target values for potential high net absorbable protein in the small intestine. The information described in this article may give better insight in the mechanisms involved and the intrinsic protein molecular structural changes occurring upon processing.

  2. An evaluation of in vitro protein-protein interaction techniques: assessing contaminating background proteins.

    PubMed

    Howell, Jenika M; Winstone, Tara L; Coorssen, Jens R; Turner, Raymond J

    2006-04-01

    Determination of protein-protein interactions is an important component in assigning function and discerning the biological relevance of proteins within a broader cellular context. In vitro protein-protein interaction methodologies, including affinity chromatography, coimmunoprecipitation, and newer approaches such as protein chip arrays, hold much promise in the detection of protein interactions, particularly in well-characterized organisms with sequenced genomes. However, each of these approaches attracts certain background proteins that can thwart detection and identification of true interactors. In addition, recombinant proteins expressed in Escherichia coli are also extensively used to assess protein-protein interactions, and background proteins in these isolates can thus contaminate interaction studies. Rigorous validation of a true interaction thus requires not only that an interaction be found by alternate techniques, but more importantly that researchers be aware of and control for matrix/support dependence. Here, we evaluate these methods for proteins interacting with DmsD (an E. coli redox enzyme maturation protein chaperone), in vitro, using E. coli subcellular fractions as prey sources. We compare and contrast the various in vitro interaction methods to identify some of the background proteins and protein profiles that are inherent to each of the methods in an E. coli system.

  3. Direct Probing of Protein-Protein Interactions

    SciTech Connect

    Noy, A; Sulchek, T A; Friddle, R W

    2005-03-10

    This project aimed to establish feasibility of using experimental techniques based on direct measurements of interaction forces on the single molecule scale to characterize equilibrium interaction potentials between individual biological molecules. Such capability will impact several research areas, ranging from rapid interaction screening capabilities to providing verifiable inputs for computational models. It should be one of the enabling technologies for modern proteomics research. This study used a combination of Monte-Carlo simulations, theoretical considerations, and direct experimental measurements to investigate two model systems that represented typical experimental situations: force-induced melting of DNA rigidly attached to the tip, and force-induced unbinding of a protein-antibody pair connected to flexible tethers. Our results establish that for both systems researchers can use force spectroscopy measurements to extract reliable information about equilibrium interaction potentials. However, the approaches necessary to extract these potentials in each case--Jarzynski reconstruction and Dynamic Force Spectroscopy--are very different. We also show how the thermodynamics and kinetics of unbinding process dictates the choice between in each case.

  4. Septins: Regulators of Protein Stability

    PubMed Central

    Vagin, Olga; Beenhouwer, David O.

    2016-01-01

    Septins are small GTPases that play a role in several important cellular processes. In this review, we focus on the roles of septins in protein stabilization. Septins may regulate protein stability by: (1) interacting with proteins involved in degradation pathways, (2) regulating the interaction between transmembrane proteins and cytoskeletal proteins, (3) affecting the mobility of transmembrane proteins in lipid bilayers, and (4) modulating the interaction of proteins with their adaptor or signaling proteins. In this context, we discuss the role of septins in protecting four different proteins from degradation. First we consider botulinum neurotoxin serotype A (BoNT/A) and the contribution of septins to its extraordinarily long intracellular persistence. Next, we discuss the role of septins in stabilizing the receptor tyrosine kinases EGFR and ErbB2. Finally, we consider the contribution of septins in protecting hypoxia-inducible factor 1α (HIF-1α) from degradation. PMID:28066764

  5. The quality of microparticulated protein.

    PubMed

    Erdman, J W

    1990-08-01

    The purpose of this paper is to describe the effects of microparticulation upon the quality of microparticulated protein products and to confirm that microparticulation does not result in changes in protein structure or quality different from those that occur with cooking. Two products were tested: microparticulated egg white and skim milk proteins and microparticulated whey protein concentrate. Three approaches were used to monitor for changes in amino acid and protein value: amino acid analysis, protein efficiency ratio (PER) bioassay, and both one- and two-dimensional sodium dodecyl sulfate polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis. Evaluation of the results of these tests indicates that no significant differences were found when comparing the premix before and after microparticulation. Significant differences also did not occur when the premix was cooked using conventional methods. Collectively, the data provide strong evidence that the protein microparticulation process used to prepare microparticulated protein products (e.g., Simplesse) does not alter the quality or nutritional value of protein in the final products.

  6. Dissecting protein-protein interactions using directed evolution.

    PubMed

    Bonsor, Daniel A; Sundberg, Eric J

    2011-04-05

    Protein-protein interactions are essential for life. They are responsible for most cellular functions and when they go awry often lead to disease. Proteins are inherently complex. They are flexible macromolecules whose constituent amino acid components act in combinatorial and networked ways when they engage one another in binding interactions. It is just this complexity that allows them to conduct such a broad array of biological functions. Despite decades of intense study of the molecular basis of protein-protein interactions, key gaps in our understanding remain, hindering our ability to accurately predict the specificities and affinities of their interactions. Until recently, most protein-protein investigations have been probed experimentally at the single-amino acid level, making them, by definition, incapable of capturing the combinatorial nature of, and networked communications between, the numerous residues within and outside of the protein-protein interface. This aspect of protein-protein interactions, however, is emerging as a major driving force for protein affinity and specificity. Understanding a combinatorial process necessarily requires a combinatorial experimental tool. Much like the organisms in which they reside, proteins naturally evolve over time, through a combinatorial process of mutagenesis and selection, to functionally associate. Elucidating the process by which proteins have evolved may be one of the keys to deciphering the molecular rules that govern their interactions with one another. Directed evolution is a technique performed in the laboratory that mimics natural evolution on a tractable time scale that has been utilized widely to engineer proteins with novel capabilities, including altered binding properties. In this review, we discuss directed evolution as an emerging tool for dissecting protein-protein interactions.

  7. 14-3-3 proteins: regulators of numerous eukaryotic proteins.

    PubMed

    van Heusden, G Paul H

    2005-09-01

    14-3-3 proteins form a family of highly conserved proteins capable of binding to more than 200 different mostly phosphorylated proteins. They are present in all eukaryotic organisms investigated, often in multiple isoforms, up to 13 in some plants. 14-3-3 binding partners are involved in almost every cellular process and 14-3-3 proteins play a key role in these processes. 14-3-3 proteins interact with products encoded by oncogenes, with filament forming proteins involved in Alzheimer'ss disease and many other proteins related to human diseases. Disturbance of the interactions with 14-3-3 proteins may lead to diseases like cancer and the neurological Miller-Dieker disease. The molecular consequences of 14-3-3 binding are diverse and only partly understood. Binding of a protein to a 14-3-3 protein may result in stabilization of the active or inactive phosphorylated form of the protein, to a conformational alteration leading to activation or inhibition, to a different subcellular localization or to the interaction with other proteins. Currently genome- and proteome-wide studies are contributing to a wider knowledge of this important family of proteins.

  8. Quantification of the Influence of Protein-Protein Interactions on Adsorbed Protein Structure and Bioactivity

    PubMed Central

    Wei, Yang; Thyparambil, Aby A.; Latour, Robert A.

    2013-01-01

    While protein-surface interactions have been widely studied, relatively little is understood at this time regarding how protein-surface interaction effects are influenced by protein-protein interactions and how these effects combine with the internal stability of a protein to influence its adsorbed-state structure and bioactivity. The objectives of this study were to develop a method to study these combined effects under widely varying protein-protein interaction conditions using hen egg-white lysozyme (HEWL) adsorbed on silica glass, poly(methyl methacrylate), and polyethylene as our model systems. In order to vary protein-protein interaction effects over a wide range, HEWL was first adsorbed to each surface type under widely varying protein solution concentrations for 2 h to saturate the surface, followed by immersion in pure buffer solution for 15 h to equilibrate the adsorbed protein layers in the absence of additionally adsorbing protein. Periodic measurements were made at selected time points of the areal density of the adsorbed protein layer as an indicator of the level of protein-protein interaction effects within the layer, and these values were then correlated with measurements of the adsorbed protein’s secondary structure and bioactivity. The results from these studies indicate that protein-protein interaction effects help stabilize the structure of HEWL adsorbed on silica glass, have little influence on the structural behavior of HEWL on HDPE, and actually serve to destabilize HEWL’s structure on PMMA. The bioactivity of HEWL on silica glass and HDPE was found to decrease in direct proportion to the degree of adsorption-induce protein unfolding. A direct correlation between bioactivity and the conformational state of adsorbed HEWL was less apparent on PMMA, thus suggesting that other factors influenced HEWL’s bioactivity on this surface, such as the accessibility of HEWL’s bioactive site being blocked by neighboring proteins or the surface

  9. Hydrogels Constructed from Engineered Proteins.

    PubMed

    Li, Hongbin; Kong, Na; Laver, Bryce; Liu, Junqiu

    2016-02-24

    Due to their various potential biomedical applications, hydrogels based on engineered proteins have attracted considerable interest. Benefitting from significant progress in recombinant DNA technology and protein engineering/design techniques, the field of protein hydrogels has made amazing progress. The latest progress of hydrogels constructed from engineered recombinant proteins are presented, mainly focused on biorecognition-driven physical hydrogels as well as chemically crosslinked hydrogels. The various bio-recognition based physical crosslinking strategies are discussed, as well as chemical crosslinking chemistries used to engineer protein hydrogels, and protein hydrogels' various biomedical applications. The future perspectives of this fast evolving field of biomaterials are also discussed.

  10. Protein misfolding disorders and macroautophagy

    PubMed Central

    Menzies, Fiona M; Moreau, Kevin; Rubinsztein, David C

    2011-01-01

    A large group of diseases, termed protein misfolding disorders, share the common feature of the accumulation of misfolded proteins. The possibility of a common mechanism underlying either the pathogenesis or therapy for these diseases is appealing. Thus, there is great interest in the role of protein degradation via autophagy in such conditions where the protein is found in the cytoplasm. Here we review the growing evidence supporting a role for autophagic dysregulation as a contributing factor to protein accumulation and cellular toxicity in certain protein misfolding disorders and discuss the available evidence that upregulation of autophagy may be a valuable therapeutic strategy. PMID:21087849

  11. Redox control of protein degradation

    PubMed Central

    Pajares, Marta; Jiménez-Moreno, Natalia; Dias, Irundika H.K.; Debelec, Bilge; Vucetic, Milica; Fladmark, Kari E.; Basaga, Huveyda; Ribaric, Samo; Milisav, Irina; Cuadrado, Antonio

    2015-01-01

    Intracellular proteolysis is critical to maintain timely degradation of altered proteins including oxidized proteins. This review attempts to summarize the most relevant findings about oxidant protein modification, as well as the impact of reactive oxygen species on the proteolytic systems that regulate cell response to an oxidant environment: the ubiquitin-proteasome system (UPS), autophagy and the unfolded protein response (UPR). In the presence of an oxidant environment, these systems are critical to ensure proteostasis and cell survival. An example of altered degradation of oxidized proteins in pathology is provided for neurodegenerative diseases. Future work will determine if protein oxidation is a valid target to combat proteinopathies. PMID:26381917

  12. Biological Applications of Protein Splicing

    PubMed Central

    Vila-Perelló, Miquel; Muir, Tom W.

    2010-01-01

    Protein splicing is a naturally-occurring process in which a protein editor, called an intein, performs a molecular disappearing act by cutting itself out of a host protein in a traceless manner. In the two decades since its discovery, protein splicing has been harnessed for the development of several protein-engineering methods. Collectively, these technologies help bridge the fields of chemistry and biology, allowing hitherto impossible manipulations of protein covalent structure. These tools and their application are the subject of this Primer. PMID:20946979

  13. Misfolded Proteins and Retinal Dystrophies

    PubMed Central

    Lin, Jonathan H.; LaVail, Matthew M.

    2010-01-01

    Many mutations associated with retinal degeneration lead to the production of misfolded proteins by cells of the retina. Emerging evidence suggests that these abnormal proteins cause cell death by activating the Unfolded Protein Response, a set of conserved intracellular signaling pathways that detect protein misfolding within the endoplasmic reticulum and control protective and proapoptotic signal transduction pathways. Here, we review the misfolded proteins associated with select types of retinitis pigmentosa, Stargadt-like macular degeneration, and Doyne Honeycomb Retinal Dystrophy and discuss the role that endoplasmic reticulum stress and UPR signaling play in their pathogenesis. Last, we review new therapies for these diseases based on preventing protein misfolding in the retina. PMID:20238009

  14. Functionalizing Microporous Membranes for Protein Purification and Protein Digestion.

    PubMed

    Dong, Jinlan; Bruening, Merlin L

    2015-01-01

    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.

  15. 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.

  16. Statistical analysis and prediction of protein-protein interfaces.

    PubMed

    Bordner, Andrew J; Abagyan, Ruben

    2005-08-15

    Predicting protein-protein interfaces from a three-dimensional structure is a key task of computational structural proteomics. In contrast to geometrically distinct small molecule binding sites, protein-protein interface are notoriously difficult to predict. We generated a large nonredundant data set of 1494 true protein-protein interfaces using biological symmetry annotation where necessary. The data set was carefully analyzed and a Support Vector Machine was trained on a combination of a new robust evolutionary conservation signal with the local surface properties to predict protein-protein interfaces. Fivefold cross validation verifies the high sensitivity and selectivity of the model. As much as 97% of the predicted patches had an overlap with the true interface patch while only 22% of the surface residues were included in an average predicted patch. The model allowed the identification of potential new interfaces and the correction of mislabeled oligomeric states.

  17. Mx proteins: antiviral proteins by chance or by necessity?

    PubMed

    Arnheiter, H; Meier, E

    1990-10-01

    The interferon-inducible Mx1 protein is responsible for inborn resistance of mice to influenza. It is now recognized that this protein is a member of a family of interferon-inducible, putative GTP-binding proteins found in many organisms. Thus, these proteins, called the Mx proteins, are found in species that are naturally infected with influenza virus, and also in species that are not. Some Mx proteins display a broader antiviral profile than the one observed for Mx1 in mice. Others, however, may not be antiviral. Two recently discovered GTP-binding proteins, Vps1p in yeast and dynamin in rat, are also related to Mx1. These proteins are synthesized constitutively and serve basic cellular functions.

  18. Collaborative protein filaments.

    PubMed

    Ghosal, Debnath; Löwe, Jan

    2015-09-14

    It is now well established that prokaryotic cells assemble diverse proteins into dynamic cytoskeletal filaments that perform essential cellular functions. Although most of the filaments assemble on their own to form higher order structures, growing evidence suggests that there are a number of prokaryotic proteins that polymerise only in the presence of a matrix such as DNA, lipid membrane or even another filament. Matrix-assisted filament systems are frequently nucleotide dependent and cytomotive but rarely considered as part of the bacterial cytoskeleton. Here, we categorise this family of filament-forming systems as collaborative filaments and introduce a simple nomenclature. Collaborative filaments are frequent in both eukaryotes and prokaryotes and are involved in vital cellular processes including chromosome segregation, DNA repair and maintenance, gene silencing and cytokinesis to mention a few. In this review, we highlight common principles underlying collaborative filaments and correlate these with known functions.

  19. Protein engineering of subtilisin.

    PubMed

    Bryan, P N

    2000-12-29

    The serine protease subtilisin is an important industrial enzyme as well as a model for understanding the enormous rate enhancements affected by enzymes. For these reasons along with the timely cloning of the gene, ease of expression and purification and availability of atomic resolution structures, subtilisin became a model system for protein engineering studies in the 1980s. Fifteen years later, mutations in well over 50% of the 275 amino acids of subtilisin have been reported in the scientific literature. Most subtilisin engineering has involved catalytic amino acids, substrate binding regions and stabilizing mutations. Stability has been the property of subtilisin which has been most amenable to enhancement, yet perhaps least understood. This review will give a brief overview of the subtilisin engineering field, critically review what has been learned about subtilisin stability from protein engineering experiments and conclude with some speculation about the prospects for future subtilisin engineering.

  20. A magnetic protein biocompass

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Qin, Siying; Yin, Hang; Yang, Celi; Dou, Yunfeng; Liu, Zhongmin; Zhang, Peng; Yu, He; Huang, Yulong; Feng, Jing; Hao, Junfeng; Hao, Jia; Deng, Lizong; Yan, Xiyun; Dong, Xiaoli; Zhao, Zhongxian; Jiang, Taijiao; Wang, Hong-Wei; Luo, Shu-Jin; Xie, Can

    2016-02-01

    The notion that animals can detect the Earth’s magnetic field was once ridiculed, but is now well established. Yet the biological nature of such magnetosensing phenomenon remains unknown. Here, we report a putative magnetic receptor (Drosophila CG8198, here named MagR) and a multimeric magnetosensing rod-like protein complex, identified by theoretical postulation and genome-wide screening, and validated with cellular, biochemical, structural and biophysical methods. The magnetosensing complex consists of the identified putative magnetoreceptor and known magnetoreception-related photoreceptor cryptochromes (Cry), has the attributes of both Cry- and iron-based systems, and exhibits spontaneous alignment in magnetic fields, including that of the Earth. Such a protein complex may form the basis of magnetoreception in animals, and may lead to applications across multiple fields.

  1. A magnetic protein biocompass.

    PubMed

    Qin, Siying; Yin, Hang; Yang, Celi; Dou, Yunfeng; Liu, Zhongmin; Zhang, Peng; Yu, He; Huang, Yulong; Feng, Jing; Hao, Junfeng; Hao, Jia; Deng, Lizong; Yan, Xiyun; Dong, Xiaoli; Zhao, Zhongxian; Jiang, Taijiao; Wang, Hong-Wei; Luo, Shu-Jin; Xie, Can

    2016-02-01

    The notion that animals can detect the Earth's magnetic field was once ridiculed, but is now well established. Yet the biological nature of such magnetosensing phenomenon remains unknown. Here, we report a putative magnetic receptor (Drosophila CG8198, here named MagR) and a multimeric magnetosensing rod-like protein complex, identified by theoretical postulation and genome-wide screening, and validated with cellular, biochemical, structural and biophysical methods. The magnetosensing complex consists of the identified putative magnetoreceptor and known magnetoreception-related photoreceptor cryptochromes (Cry), has the attributes of both Cry- and iron-based systems, and exhibits spontaneous alignment in magnetic fields, including that of the Earth. Such a protein complex may form the basis of magnetoreception in animals, and may lead to applications across multiple fields.

  2. Microdosing of protein drugs.

    PubMed

    Rowland, M

    2016-02-01

    Poor pharmacokinetics (PK) can seriously limit clinical utility. Knowing early whether a new compound is likely to have the desired PK profile at therapeutic doses is therefore important. One approach, microdosing, has shown high success with small molecular weight compounds, despite early skepticism. Vlaming et al. report the first, and successful, clinical application of a microdose of a humanized recombinant protein. But what is the likely success for this class of drugs more generally?

  3. Prion protein and aging

    PubMed Central

    Gasperini, Lisa; Legname, Giuseppe

    2014-01-01

    The cellular prion protein (PrPC) has been widely investigated ever since its conformational isoform, the prion (or PrPSc), was identified as the etiological agent of prion disorders. The high homology shared by the PrPC-encoding gene among mammals, its high turnover rate and expression in every tissue strongly suggest that PrPC may possess key physiological functions. Therefore, defining PrPC roles, properties and fate in the physiology of mammalian cells would be fundamental to understand its pathological involvement in prion diseases. Since the incidence of these neurodegenerative disorders is enhanced in aging, understanding PrPC functions in this life phase may be of crucial importance. Indeed, a large body of evidence suggests that PrPC plays a neuroprotective and antioxidant role. Moreover, it has been suggested that PrPC is involved in Alzheimer disease, another neurodegenerative pathology that develops predominantly in the aging population. In prion diseases, PrPC function is likely lost upon protein aggregation occurring in the course of the disease. Additionally, the aging process may alter PrPC biochemical properties, thus influencing its propensity to convert into PrPSc. Both phenomena may contribute to the disease development and progression. In Alzheimer disease, PrPC has a controversial role because its presence seems to mediate β-amyloid toxicity, while its down-regulation correlates with neuronal death. The role of PrPC in aging has been investigated from different perspectives, often leading to contrasting results. The putative protein functions in aging have been studied in relation to memory, behavior and myelin maintenance. In aging mice, PrPC changes in subcellular localization and post-translational modifications have been explored in an attempt to relate them to different protein roles and propensity to convert into PrPSc. Here we provide an overview of the most relevant studies attempting to delineate PrPC functions and fate in aging

  4. Dissecting Amelogenin Protein Nanospheres

    PubMed Central

    Bromley, Keith M.; Kiss, Andrew S.; Lokappa, Sowmya Bekshe; Lakshminarayanan, Rajamani; Fan, Daming; Ndao, Moise; Evans, John Spencer; Moradian-Oldak, Janet

    2011-01-01

    Amelogenin self-assembles to form an extracellular protein matrix, which serves as a template for the continuously growing enamel apatite crystals. To gain further insight into the molecular mechanism of amelogenin nanosphere formation, we manipulated the interactions between amelogenin monomers by altering pH, temperature, and protein concentration to create isolated metastable amelogenin oligomers. Recombinant porcine amelogenins (rP172 and rP148) and three different mutants containing only a single tryptophan (Trp161, Trp45, and Trp25) were used. Dynamic light scattering and fluorescence studies demonstrated that oligomers were metastable and in constant equilibrium with monomers. Stable oligomers with an average hydrodynamic radius (RH) of 7.5 nm were observed at pH 5.5 between 4 and 10 mg·ml−1. We did not find any evidence of a significant increase in folding upon self-association of the monomers into oligomers, indicating that they are disordered. Fluorescence experiments with single tryptophan amelogenins revealed that upon oligomerization the C terminus of amelogenin (around residue Trp161) is exposed at the surface of the oligomers, whereas the N-terminal region around Trp25 and Trp45 is involved in protein-protein interaction. The truncated rP148 formed similar but smaller oligomers, suggesting that the C terminus is not critical for amelogenin oligomerization. We propose a model for nanosphere formation via oligomers, and we predict that nanospheres will break up to form oligomers in mildly acidic environments via histidine protonation. We further suggest that oligomeric structures might be functional components during maturation of enamel apatite. PMID:21840988

  5. Bone morphogenetic protein

    SciTech Connect

    Xiao Yongtao; Xiang Lixin; Shao Jianzhong

    2007-10-26

    Bone morphogenetic proteins (BMPs) are multi-functional growth factors belonging to the transforming growth factor-beta superfamily. It has been demonstrated that BMPs had been involved in the regulation of cell proliferation, survival, differentiation and apoptosis. However, their hallmark ability is that play a pivotal role in inducing bone, cartilage, ligament, and tendon formation at both heterotopic and orthotopic sites. In this review, we mainly concentrate on BMP structure, function, molecular signaling and potential medical application.

  6. Teaching resources. Protein kinases.

    PubMed

    Caplan, Avrom

    2005-02-22

    This Teaching Resource provides lecture notes and slides for a class covering the structure and function of protein kinases and is part of the course "Cell Signaling Systems: A Course for Graduate Students." The lecture begins with a discussion of the genomics and evolutionary relationships among kinases and then proceeds to describe the structure-function relationships of specific kinases, the molecular mechanisms underlying substrate specificity, and selected issues in regulation of kinase activity.

  7. Protein-Protein Fusion Catalyzed by Sortase A

    PubMed Central

    Levary, David A.; Parthasarathy, Ranganath; Boder, Eric T.; Ackerman, Margaret E.

    2011-01-01

    Chimeric proteins boast widespread use in areas ranging from cell biology to drug delivery. Post-translational protein fusion using the bacterial transpeptidase sortase A provides an attractive alternative when traditional gene fusion fails. We describe use of this enzyme for in vitro protein ligation and report the successful fusion of 10 pairs of protein domains with preserved functionality — demonstrating the robust and facile nature of this reaction. PMID:21494692

  8. Purine inhibitors of protein kinases, G proteins and polymerases

    DOEpatents

    Gray, Nathanael S.; Schultz, Peter; Kim, Sung-Hou; Meijer, Laurent

    2004-10-12

    The present invention relates to 2-N-substituted 6-(4-methoxybenzylamino)-9-isopropylpurines that inhibit, inter alia, protein kinases, G-proteins and polymerases. In addition, the present invention relates to methods of using such 2-N-substituted 6-(4-methoxybenzylamino)-9-isopropylpurines to inhibit protein kinases, G-proteins, polymerases and other cellular processes and to treat cellular proliferative diseases.

  9. Process for protein PEGylation.

    PubMed

    Pfister, David; Morbidelli, Massimo

    2014-04-28

    PEGylation is a versatile drug delivery technique that presents a particularly wide range of conjugation chemistry and polymer structure. The conjugated protein can be tuned to specifically meet the needs of the desired application. In the area of drug delivery this typically means to increase the persistency in the human body without affecting the activity profile of the original protein. On the other hand, because of the high costs associated with the production of therapeutic proteins, subsequent operations imposed by PEGylation must be optimized to minimize the costs inherent to the additional steps. The closest attention has to be given to the PEGylation reaction engineering and to the subsequent purification processes. This review article focuses on these two aspects and critically reviews the current state of the art with a clear focus on the development of industrial scale processes which can meet the market requirements in terms of quality and costs. The possibility of using continuous processes, with integration between the reaction and the separation steps is also illustrated.

  10. Papillomavirus E6 proteins

    SciTech Connect

    Howie, Heather L.; Katzenellenbogen, Rachel A.; Galloway, Denise A.

    2009-02-20

    The papillomaviruses are small DNA viruses that encode approximately eight genes, and require the host cell DNA replication machinery for their viral DNA replication. Thus papillomaviruses have evolved strategies to induce host cell DNA synthesis balanced with strategies to protect the cell from unscheduled replication. While the papillomavirus E1 and E2 genes are directly involved in viral replication by binding to and unwinding the origin of replication, the E6 and E7 proteins have auxillary functions that promote proliferation. As a consequence of disrupting the normal checkpoints that regulate cell cycle entry and progression, the E6 and E7 proteins play a key role in the oncogenic properties of human papillomaviruses with a high risk of causing anogenital cancers (HR HPVs). As a consequence, E6 and E7 of HR HPVs are invariably expressed in cervical cancers. This article will focus on the E6 protein and its numerous activities including inactivating p53, blocking apoptosis, activating telomerase, disrupting cell adhesion, polarity and epithelial differentiation, altering transcription and reducing immune recognition.

  11. Papillomavirus E6 proteins

    PubMed Central

    Howie, Heather L; Katzenellenbogen, Rachel A; Galloway, Denise A

    2009-01-01

    The papillomaviruses are small DNA viruses that encode approximately eight genes, and require the host cell DNA replication machinery for their viral DNA replication. Thus papillomaviruses have evolved strategies to induce host cell DNA synthesis balanced with strategies to protect the cell from unscheduled replication. While the papillomavirus E1 and E2 genes are directly involved in viral replication by binding to and unwinding the origin of replication, the E6 and E7 proteins have auxillary functions that promote proliferation. As a consequence of disrupting the normal checkpoints that regulate cell cycle entry and progression, the E6 and E7 proteins play a key role in the oncogenic properties of human papillomaviruses with a high risk of causing anogenital cancers (HR HPVs). As a consequence, E6 and E7 of HR HPVs are invariably expressed in cervical cancers. This article will focus on the E6 protein and its numerous activities including inactivating p53, blocking apoptosis, activating telomerase, disrupting cell adhesion, polarity and epithelial differentiation, altering transcription and reducing immune recognition. PMID:19081593

  12. Analysis of secreted proteins.

    PubMed

    Severino, Valeria; Farina, Annarita; Chambery, Angela

    2013-01-01

    Most biological processes including growth, proliferation, differentiation, and apoptosis are coordinated by tightly regulated signaling pathways, which also involve secreted proteins acting in an autocrine and/or paracrine manner. In addition, extracellular signaling molecules affect local niche biology and influence the cross-talking with the surrounding tissues. The understanding of this molecular language may provide an integrated and broader view of cellular regulatory networks under physiological and pathological conditions. In this context, the profiling at a global level of cell secretomes (i.e., the subpopulations of a proteome secreted from the cell) has become an active area of research. The current interest in secretome research also deals with its high potential for the biomarker discovery and the identification of new targets for therapeutic strategies. Several proteomic and mass spectrometry platforms and methodologies have been applied to secretome profiling of conditioned media of cultured cell lines and primary cells. Nevertheless, the analysis of secreted proteins is still a very challenging task, because of the technical difficulties that may hamper the subsequent mass spectrometry analysis. This chapter describes a typical workflow for the analysis of proteins secreted by cultured cells. Crucial issues related to cell culture conditions for the collection of conditioned media, secretome preparation, and mass spectrometry analysis are discussed. Furthermore, an overview of quantitative LC-MS-based approaches, computational tools for data analysis, and strategies for validation of potential secretome biomarkers is also presented.

  13. Infrared Protein Crystallography

    SciTech Connect

    J Sage; Y Zhang; J McGeehan; R Ravelli; M Weik; J van Thor

    2011-12-31

    We consider the application of infrared spectroscopy to protein crystals, with particular emphasis on exploiting molecular orientation through polarization measurements on oriented single crystals. Infrared microscopes enable transmission measurements on individual crystals using either thermal or nonthermal sources, and can accommodate flow cells, used to measure spectral changes induced by exposure to soluble ligands, and cryostreams, used for measurements of flash-cooled crystals. Comparison of unpolarized infrared measurements on crystals and solutions probes the effects of crystallization and can enhance the value of the structural models refined from X-ray diffraction data by establishing solution conditions under which they are most relevant. Results on several proteins are consistent with similar equilibrium conformational distributions in crystal and solutions. However, the rates of conformational change are often perturbed. Infrared measurements also detect products generated by X-ray exposure, including CO{sub 2}. Crystals with favorable symmetry exhibit infrared dichroism that enhances the synergy with X-ray crystallography. Polarized infrared measurements on crystals can distinguish spectral contributions from chemically similar sites, identify hydrogen bonding partners, and, in opportune situations, determine three-dimensional orientations of molecular groups. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: Protein Structure and Function in the Crystalline State.

  14. A Bayesian Framework for Combining Protein and Network Topology Information for Predicting Protein-Protein Interactions.

    PubMed

    Birlutiu, Adriana; d'Alché-Buc, Florence; Heskes, Tom

    2015-01-01

    Computational methods for predicting protein-protein interactions are important tools that can complement high-throughput technologies and guide biologists in designing new laboratory experiments. The proteins and the interactions between them can be described by a network which is characterized by several topological properties. Information about proteins and interactions between them, in combination with knowledge about topological properties of the network, can be used for developing computational methods that can accurately predict unknown protein-protein interactions. This paper presents a supervised learning framework based on Bayesian inference for combining two types of information: i) network topology information, and ii) information related to proteins and the interactions between them. The motivation of our model is that by combining these two types of information one can achieve a better accuracy in predicting protein-protein interactions, than by using models constructed from these two types of information independently.

  15. Predicting disease-related proteins based on clique backbone in protein-protein interaction network.

    PubMed

    Yang, Lei; Zhao, Xudong; Tang, Xianglong

    2014-01-01

    Network biology integrates different kinds of data, including physical or functional networks and disease gene sets, to interpret human disease. A clique (maximal complete subgraph) in a protein-protein interaction network is a topological module and possesses inherently biological significance. A disease-related clique possibly associates with complex diseases. Fully identifying disease components in a clique is conductive to uncovering disease mechanisms. This paper proposes an approach of predicting disease proteins based on cliques in a protein-protein interaction network. To tolerate false positive and negative interactions in protein networks, extending cliques and scoring predicted disease proteins with gene ontology terms are introduced to the clique-based method. Precisions of predicted disease proteins are verified by disease phenotypes and steadily keep to more than 95%. The predicted disease proteins associated with cliques can partly complement mapping between genotype and phenotype, and provide clues for understanding the pathogenesis of serious diseases.

  16. S-linked protein homocysteinylation: identifying targets based on structural, physicochemical and protein-protein interactions of homocysteinylated proteins.

    PubMed

    Silla, Yumnam; Sundaramoorthy, Elayanambi; Talwar, Puneet; Sengupta, Shantanu

    2013-05-01

    An elevated level of homocysteine, a thiol-containing amino acid is associated with a wide spectrum of disease conditions. A majority (>80 %) of the circulating homocysteine exist in protein-bound form. Homocysteine can bind to free cysteine residues in the protein or could cleave accessible cysteine disulfide bonds via thiol disulfide exchange reaction. Binding of homocysteine to proteins could potentially alter the structure and/or function of the protein. To date only 21 proteins have been experimentally shown to bind homocysteine. In this study we attempted to identify other proteins that could potentially bind to homocysteine based on the criteria that such proteins will have significant 3D structural homology with the proteins that have been experimentally validated and have solvent accessible cysteine residues either with high dihedral strain energy (for cysteine-cysteine disulfide bonds) or low pKa (for free cysteine residues). This analysis led us to the identification of 78 such proteins of which 68 proteins had 154 solvent accessible disulfide cysteine pairs with high dihedral strain energy and 10 proteins had free cysteine residues with low pKa that could potentially bind to homocysteine. Further, protein-protein interaction network was built to identify the interacting partners of these putative homocysteine binding proteins. We found that the 21 experimentally validated proteins had 174 interacting partners while the 78 proteins identified in our analysis had 445 first interacting partners. These proteins are mainly involved in biological activities such as complement and coagulation pathway, focal adhesion, ECM-receptor, ErbB signalling and cancer pathways, etc. paralleling the disease-specific attributes associated with hyperhomocysteinemia.

  17. [Methods for analysis of protein-protein and protein-ligand interactions].

    PubMed

    Durech, M; Trčka, F; Vojtěšek, B; Müller, P

    2014-01-01

    In order to maintain cellular homeostasis, cellular proteins coexist in complex and variable molecular assemblies. Therefore, understanding of major physiological processes at molecular level is based on analysis of protein-protein interaction networks. Firstly, composition of the molecular assembly has to be qualitatively analyzed. In the next step, quantitative bio-chemical properties of the identified protein-protein interactions are determined. Detailed information about the protein-protein interaction interface can be obtained by crystallographic methods. Accordingly, the insight into the molecular architecture of these protein-protein complexes allows us to rationally design new synthetic compounds that specifically influence various physiological or pathological processes by targeted modulation of protein interactions. This review is focused on description of the most used methods applied in both qualitative and quantitative analysis of protein-protein interactions. Co- immunoprecipitation and affinity co- precipitation are basic methods designed for qualitative analysis of protein binding partners. Further bio-chemical analysis of the interaction requires definition of kinetic and thermodynamic parameters. Surface plasmon resonance (SPR) is used for description of affinity and kinetic profile of the interaction, fluorescence polarization (FP) method for fast determination of inhibition potential of inhibitors and isothermal titration calorimetry (ITC) for definition of thermodynamic parameters of the interaction (G, H and S). Besides the importance of uncovering the molecular basis of protein interactions for basic research, the same methodological approaches open new possibilities in rational design of novel therapeutic agents.

  18. Understanding Protein Non-Folding

    PubMed Central

    Uversky, Vladimir N.; Dunker, A. Keith

    2010-01-01

    This review describes the family of intrinsically disordered proteins, members of which fail to form rigid 3-D structures under physiological conditions, either along their entire lengths or only in localized regions. Instead, these intriguing proteins/regions exist as dynamic ensembles within which atom positions and backbone Ramachandran angles exhibit extreme temporal fluctuations without specific equilibrium values. Many of these intrinsically disordered proteins are known to carry out important biological functions which, in fact, depend on the absence of specific 3-D structure. The existence of such proteins does not fit the prevailing structure-function paradigm, which states that unique 3-D structure is a prerequisite to function. Thus, the protein structure-function paradigm has to be expanded to include intrinsically disordered proteins and alternative relationships among protein sequence, structure, and function. This shift in the paradigm represents a major breakthrough for biochemistry, biophysics and molecular biology, as it opens new levels of understanding with regard to the complex life of proteins. This review will try to answer the following questions: How were intrinsically disordered proteins discovered? Why don't these proteins fold? What is so special about intrinsic disorder? What are the functional advantages of disordered proteins/regions? What is the functional repertoire of these proteins? What are the relationships between intrinsically disordered proteins and human diseases? PMID:20117254

  19. Why fibrous proteins are romantic.

    PubMed

    Cohen, C

    1998-01-01

    Here I give a personal account of the great history of fibrous protein structure. I describe how Astbury first recognized the essential simplicity of fibrous proteins and their paradigmatic role in protein structure. The poor diffraction patterns yielded by these proteins were then deciphered by Pauling, Crick, Ramachandran and others (in part by model building) to reveal alpha-helical coiled coils, beta-sheets, and the collagen triple helical coiled coil-all characterized by different local sequence periodicities. Longer-range sequence periodicities (or "magic numbers") present in diverse fibrous proteins, such as collagen, tropomyosin, paramyosin, myosin, and were then shown to account for the characteristic axial repeats observed in filaments of these proteins. More recently, analysis of fibrous protein structure has been extended in many cases to atomic resolution, and some systems, such as "leucine zippers," are providing a deeper understanding of protein design than similar studies of globular proteins. In the last sections, I provide some dramatic examples of fibrous protein dynamics. One example is the so-called "spring-loaded" mechanism for viral fusion by the hemagglutinin protein of influenza. Another is the possible conformational changes in prion proteins, implicated in "mad cow disease," which may be related to similar transitions in a variety of globular and fibrous proteins.

  20. Protein-protein interactions in the synaptonemal complex.

    PubMed Central

    Tarsounas, M; Pearlman, R E; Gasser, P J; Park, M S; Moens, P B

    1997-01-01

    In mammalian systems, an approximately M(r) 30,000 Cor1 protein has been identified as a major component of the meiotic prophase chromosome cores, and a M(r) 125,000 Syn1 protein is present between homologue cores where they are synapsed and form the synaptonemal complex (SC). Immunolocalization of these proteins during meiosis suggests possible homo- and heterotypic interactions between the two as well as possible interactions with yet unrecognized proteins. We used the two-hybrid system in the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae to detect possible protein-protein associations. Segments of hamsters Cor1 and Syn1 proteins were tested in various combinations for homo- and heterotypic interactions. In the cause of Cor1, homotypic interactions involve regions capable of coiled-coil formation, observation confirmed by in vitro affinity coprecipitation experiments. The two-hybrid assay detects no interaction of Cor1 protein with central and C-terminal fragments of Syn1 protein and no homotypic interactions involving these fragments of Syn1. Hamster Cor1 and Syn1 proteins both associate with the human ubiquitin-conjugation enzyme Hsubc9 as well as with the hamster Ubc9 homologue. The interactions between SC proteins and the Ubc9 protein may be significant for SC disassembly, which coincides with the repulsion of homologs by late prophase I, and also for the termination of sister centromere cohesiveness at anaphase II. Images PMID:9285814

  1. Evolutionary reprograming of protein-protein interaction specificity.

    PubMed

    Akiva, Eyal; Babbitt, Patricia C

    2015-10-22

    Using mutation libraries and deep sequencing, Aakre et al. study the evolution of protein-protein interactions using a toxin-antitoxin model. The results indicate probable trajectories via "intermediate" proteins that are promiscuous, thus avoiding transitions via non-interactions. These results extend observations about other biological interactions and enzyme evolution, suggesting broadly general principles.

  2. Multiscale modeling of proteins.

    PubMed

    Tozzini, Valentina

    2010-02-16

    The activity within a living cell is based on a complex network of interactions among biomolecules, exchanging information and energy through biochemical processes. These events occur on different scales, from the nano- to the macroscale, spanning about 10 orders of magnitude in the space domain and 15 orders of magnitude in the time domain. Consequently, many different modeling techniques, each proper for a particular time or space scale, are commonly used. In addition, a single process often spans more than a single time or space scale. Thus, the necessity arises for combining the modeling techniques in multiscale approaches. In this Account, I first review the different modeling methods for bio-systems, from quantum mechanics to the coarse-grained and continuum-like descriptions, passing through the atomistic force field simulations. Special attention is devoted to their combination in different possible multiscale approaches and to the questions and problems related to their coherent matching in the space and time domains. These aspects are often considered secondary, but in fact, they have primary relevance when the aim is the coherent and complete description of bioprocesses. Subsequently, applications are illustrated by means of two paradigmatic examples: (i) the green fluorescent protein (GFP) family and (ii) the proteins involved in the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) replication cycle. The GFPs are currently one of the most frequently used markers for monitoring protein trafficking within living cells; nanobiotechnology and cell biology strongly rely on their use in fluorescence microscopy techniques. A detailed knowledge of the actions of the virus-specific enzymes of HIV (specifically HIV protease and integrase) is necessary to study novel therapeutic strategies against this disease. Thus, the insight accumulated over years of intense study is an excellent framework for this Account. The foremost relevance of these two biomolecular systems was

  3. Chemical Protein Modification through Cysteine.

    PubMed

    Gunnoo, Smita B; Madder, Annemieke

    2016-04-01

    The modification of proteins with non-protein entities is important for a wealth of applications, and methods for chemically modifying proteins attract considerable attention. Generally, modification is desired at a single site to maintain homogeneity and to minimise loss of function. Though protein modification can be achieved by targeting some natural amino acid side chains, this often leads to ill-defined and randomly modified proteins. Amongst the natural amino acids, cysteine combines advantageous properties contributing to its suitability for site-selective modification, including a unique nucleophilicity, and a low natural abundance--both allowing chemo- and regioselectivity. Native cysteine residues can be targeted, or Cys can be introduced at a desired site in a protein by means of reliable genetic engineering techniques. This review on chemical protein modification through cysteine should appeal to those interested in modifying proteins for a range of applications.

  4. How do chaperonins fold protein?

    PubMed Central

    Motojima, Fumihiro

    2015-01-01

    Protein folding is a biological process that is essential for the proper functioning of proteins in all living organisms. In cells, many proteins require the assistance of molecular chaperones for their folding. Chaperonins belong to a class of molecular chaperones that have been extensively studied. However, the mechanism by which a chaperonin mediates the folding of proteins is still controversial. Denatured proteins are folded in the closed chaperonin cage, leading to the assumption that denatured proteins are completely encapsulated inside the chaperonin cage. In contrast to the assumption, we recently found that denatured protein interacts with hydrophobic residues at the subunit interfaces of the chaperonin, and partially protrude out of the cage. In this review, we will explain our recent results and introduce our model for the mechanism by which chaperonins accelerate protein folding, in view of recent findings. PMID:27493521

  5. Stabilized polyacrylic saccharide protein conjugates

    DOEpatents

    Callstrom, M.R.; Bednarski, M.D.; Gruber, P.R.

    1996-02-20

    This invention is directed to water soluble protein polymer conjugates which are stable in hostile environments. The conjugate comprises a protein which is linked to an acrylic polymer at multiple points through saccharide linker groups. 16 figs.

  6. Leptospira Protein Expression During Infection

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    We are characterizing protein expression in vivo during experimental leptospirosis using immunofluorescence microscopy. Coding regions for several proteins were identified through analysis of Leptospira interrogans serovar Copenhageni and L. borgpetersenii serovar Hardjo genomes. In addition, codi...

  7. Microtubules, Tubulins and Associated Proteins.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Raxworthy, Michael J.

    1988-01-01

    Reviews much of what is known about microtubules, which are biopolymers consisting predominantly of subunits of the globular protein, tubulin. Describes the functions of microtubules, their structure and assembly, microtube associated proteins, and microtubule-disrupting agents. (TW)

  8. Stabilized polyacrylic saccharide protein conjugates

    DOEpatents

    Callstrom, Matthew R.; Bednarski, Mark D.; Gruber, Patrick R.

    1996-01-01

    This invention is directed to water soluble protein polymer conjugates which are stabile in hostile environments. The conjugate comprises a protein which is linked to an acrylic polymer at multiple points through saccharide linker groups.

  9. Controlling allosteric networks in proteins

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dokholyan, Nikolay

    2013-03-01

    We present a novel methodology based on graph theory and discrete molecular dynamics simulations for delineating allosteric pathways in proteins. We use this methodology to uncover the structural mechanisms responsible for coupling of distal sites on proteins and utilize it for allosteric modulation of proteins. We will present examples where inference of allosteric networks and its rewiring allows us to ``rescue'' cystic fibrosis transmembrane conductance regulator (CFTR), a protein associated with fatal genetic disease cystic fibrosis. We also use our methodology to control protein function allosterically. We design a novel protein domain that can be inserted into identified allosteric site of target protein. Using a drug that binds to our domain, we alter the function of the target protein. We successfully tested this methodology in vitro, in living cells and in zebrafish. We further demonstrate transferability of our allosteric modulation methodology to other systems and extend it to become ligh-activatable.

  10. Protein secretion in Bacillus species.

    PubMed Central

    Simonen, M; Palva, I

    1993-01-01

    Bacilli secrete numerous proteins into the environment. Many of the secretory proteins, their export signals, and their processing steps during secretion have been characterized in detail. In contrast, the molecular mechanisms of protein secretion have been relatively poorly characterized. However, several components of the protein secretion machinery have been identified and cloned recently, which is likely to lead to rapid expansion of the knowledge of the protein secretion mechanism in Bacillus species. Comparison of the presently known export components of Bacillus species with those of Escherichia coli suggests that the mechanism of protein translocation across the cytoplasmic membrane is conserved among gram-negative and gram-positive bacteria differences are found in steps preceding and following the translocation process. Many of the secretory proteins of bacilli are produced industrially, but several problems have been encountered in the production of Bacillus heterologous secretory proteins. In the final section we discuss these problems and point out some possibilities to overcome them. PMID:8464403

  11. The Evolutionary Design of Proteins

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Poelwijk, Frank J.; Raman, Arjun S.; Leibler, Stanislas; Ranganathan, Rama

    2011-03-01

    Proteins fold spontaneously into precise, well-packed 3D structures, and execute complex functions such as specificity in molecular recognition, and efficient catalysis. Despite this, many studies show that proteins are robust to random mutagenesis. Additionally, proteins are evolvable. What principles underlying the design of natural proteins explain these properties? Recent work examining correlated evolution of amino acid positions shows that many positions in proteins are nearly statistically independent while 10-20% are organized into groups of co-evolving positions - termed ``protein sectors'' - that underlie conserved, independently varying biological activities. These findings suggest that the basic design of natural proteins is fundamentally tied to the nature of fluctuations in the selection pressures during evolution. We propose to test this hypothesis using a system for high-speed laboratory evolution and determine how variation in selection pressures influences the architecture of amino acid interactions within a protein.

  12. Purification of Tetrahymena cytoskeletal proteins.

    PubMed

    Honts, Jerry E

    2012-01-01

    Like all eukaryotic cells, Tetrahymena thermophila contains a rich array of cytoskeletal proteins, some familiar and some novel. A detailed analysis of the structure, function, and interactions of these proteins requires procedures for purifying the individual protein components. Procedures for the purification of actin and tubulin from Tetrahymena are reviewed, followed by a description of a procedure that yields proteins from the epiplasmic layer and associated structures, including the tetrins. Finally, the challenges and opportunities for future advances are assessed.

  13. Tyrosine phosphorylation of WW proteins

    PubMed Central

    Reuven, Nina; Shanzer, Matan

    2015-01-01

    A number of key regulatory proteins contain one or two copies of the WW domain known to mediate protein–protein interaction via proline-rich motifs, such as PPxY. The Hippo pathway components take advantage of this module to transduce tumor suppressor signaling. It is becoming evident that tyrosine phosphorylation is a critical regulator of the WW proteins. Here, we review the current knowledge on the involved tyrosine kinases and their roles in regulating the WW proteins. PMID:25627656

  14. BALANCED PRODUCTION OF RIBOSOMAL PROTEINS

    PubMed Central

    Perry, Robert P.

    2017-01-01

    Eukaryotic ribosomes contain one molecule each of 79 different proteins. The genes encoding these proteins are usually at widely scattered loci and have distinctive promoters with certain common features. This minireview discusses the means by which cells manage to balance the production of ribosomal proteins so as to end up with equimolar quantities in the ribosome. Regulation at all levels of gene expression, from transcription to protein turnover, is considered. PMID:17689889

  15. Protein loss during nuclear isolation

    PubMed Central

    1983-01-01

    Cryomicrodissection makes possible the measurement of the entire in vivo protein content of the amphibian oocyte nucleus and provides a heretofore missing baseline for estimating protein loss during nuclear isolation by other methods. When oocyte nuclei are isolated into an aqueous medium, they lose 95% of their protein with a half-time of 250 s. This result implies an even more rapid loss of protein from aqueously isolated nuclei of ordinary-size cells. PMID:6619193

  16. Protein function annotation using protein domain family resources.

    PubMed

    Das, Sayoni; Orengo, Christine A

    2016-01-15

    As a result of the genome sequencing and structural genomics initiatives, we have a wealth of protein sequence and structural data. However, only about 1% of these proteins have experimental functional annotations. As a result, computational approaches that can predict protein functions are essential in bridging this widening annotation gap. This article reviews the current approaches of protein function prediction using structure and sequence based classification of protein domain family resources with a special focus on functional families in the CATH-Gene3D resource.

  17. Protein Adsorption in Three Dimensions

    PubMed Central

    Vogler, Erwin A.

    2011-01-01

    Recent experimental and theoretical work clarifying the physical chemistry of blood-protein adsorption from aqueous-buffer solution to various kinds of surfaces is reviewed and interpreted within the context of biomaterial applications, especially toward development of cardiovascular biomaterials. The importance of this subject in biomaterials surface science is emphasized by reducing the “protein-adsorption problem” to three core questions that require quantitative answer. An overview of the protein-adsorption literature identifies some of the sources of inconsistency among many investigators participating in more than five decades of focused research. A tutorial on the fundamental biophysical chemistry of protein adsorption sets the stage for a detailed discussion of the kinetics and thermodynamics of protein adsorption, including adsorption competition between two proteins for the same adsorbent immersed in a binary-protein mixture. Both kinetics and steady-state adsorption can be rationalized using a single interpretive paradigm asserting that protein molecules partition from solution into a three-dimensional (3D) interphase separating bulk solution from the physical-adsorbent surface. Adsorbed protein collects in one-or-more adsorbed layers, depending on protein size, solution concentration, and adsorbent surface energy (water wettability). The adsorption process begins with the hydration of an adsorbent surface brought into contact with an aqueous-protein solution. Surface hydration reactions instantaneously form a thin, pseudo-2D interface between the adsorbent and protein solution. Protein molecules rapidly diffuse into this newly-formed interface, creating a truly 3D interphase that inflates with arriving proteins and fills to capacity within milliseconds at mg/mL bulk-solution concentrations CB. This inflated interphase subsequently undergoes time-dependent (minutes-to-hours) decrease in volume VI by expulsion of either-or-both interphase water and

  18. Implication of Terminal Residues at Protein-Protein and Protein-DNA Interfaces.

    PubMed

    Martin, Olivier M F; Etheve, Loïc; Launay, Guillaume; Martin, Juliette

    2016-01-01

    Terminal residues of protein chains are charged and more flexible than other residues since they are constrained only on one side. Do they play a particular role in protein-protein and protein-DNA interfaces? To answer this question, we considered large sets of non-redundant protein-protein and protein-DNA complexes and analyzed the status of terminal residues and their involvement in interfaces. In protein-protein complexes, we found that more than half of terminal residues (62%) are either modified by attachment of a tag peptide (10%) or have missing coordinates in the analyzed structures (52%). Terminal residues are almost exclusively located at the surface of proteins (94%). Contrary to charged residues, they are not over or under-represented in protein-protein interfaces, but strongly prefer the peripheral region of interfaces when present at the interface (83% of terminal residues). The almost exclusive location of terminal residues at the surface of the proteins or in the rim regions of interfaces explains that experimental methods relying on tail hybridization can be successfully applied without disrupting the complexes under study. Concerning conformational rearrangement in protein-protein complexes, despite their expected flexibility, terminal residues adopt similar locations between the free and bound forms of the docking benchmark. In protein-DNA complexes, N-terminal residues are twice more frequent than C-terminal residues at interfaces. Both N-terminal and C-terminal residues are under-represented in interfaces, in contrast to positively charged residues, which are strongly favored. When located in protein-DNA interfaces, terminal residues prefer the periphery. N-terminal and C-terminal residues thus have particular properties with regard to interfaces, which cannot be reduced to their charged nature.

  19. Identification of essential proteins based on ranking edge-weights in protein-protein interaction networks.

    PubMed

    Wang, Yan; Sun, Huiyan; Du, Wei; Blanzieri, Enrico; Viero, Gabriella; Xu, Ying; Liang, Yanchun

    2014-01-01

    Essential proteins are those that are indispensable to cellular survival and development. Existing methods for essential protein identification generally rely on knock-out experiments and/or the relative density of their interactions (edges) with other proteins in a Protein-Protein Interaction (PPI) network. Here, we present a computational method, called EW, to first rank protein-protein interactions in terms of their Edge Weights, and then identify sub-PPI-networks consisting of only the highly-ranked edges and predict their proteins as essential proteins. We have applied this method to publicly-available PPI data on Saccharomyces cerevisiae (Yeast) and Escherichia coli (E. coli) for essential protein identification, and demonstrated that EW achieves better performance than the state-of-the-art methods in terms of the precision-recall and Jackknife measures. The highly-ranked protein-protein interactions by our prediction tend to be biologically significant in both the Yeast and E. coli PPI networks. Further analyses on systematically perturbed Yeast and E. coli PPI networks through randomly deleting edges demonstrate that the proposed method is robust and the top-ranked edges tend to be more associated with known essential proteins than the lowly-ranked edges.

  20. Aeolotopic interactions of globular proteins

    PubMed Central

    Lomakin, Aleksey; Asherie, Neer; Benedek, George B.

    1999-01-01

    Protein crystallization, aggregation, liquid–liquid phase separation, and self-assembly are important in protein structure determination in the industrial processing of proteins and in the inhibition of protein condensation diseases. To fully describe such phase transformations in globular protein solutions, it is necessary to account for the strong spatial variation of the interactions on the protein surface. One difficulty is that each globular protein has its own unique surface, which is crucial for its biological function. However, the similarities amongst the macroscopic properties of different protein solutions suggest that there may exist a generic model that is capable of describing the nonuniform interactions between globular proteins. In this paper we present such a model, which includes the short-range interactions that vary from place to place on the surface of the protein. We show that this aeolotopic model [from the Greek aiolos (“variable”) and topos (“place”)] describes the phase diagram of globular proteins and provides insight into protein aggregation and crystallization. PMID:10449715

  1. Functional Foods Containing Whey Proteins

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Whey proteins, modified whey proteins, and whey components are useful as nutrients or supplements for health maintenance. Extrusion modified whey proteins can easily fit into new products such as beverages, confectionery items (e.g., candies), convenience foods, desserts, baked goods, sauces, and in...

  2. Protein folding in the cell

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gething, Mary-Jane; Sambrook, Joseph

    1992-01-01

    In the cell, as in vitro, the final conformation of a protein is determined by its amino-acid sequence. But whereas some isolated proteins can be denatured and refolded in vitro in the absence of other macromolecular cellular components, folding and assembly of polypeptides in vivo involves other proteins, many of which belong to families that have been highly conserved during evolution.

  3. Biophysics of protein evolution and evolutionary protein biophysics

    PubMed Central

    Sikosek, Tobias; Chan, Hue Sun

    2014-01-01

    The study of molecular evolution at the level of protein-coding genes often entails comparing large datasets of sequences to infer their evolutionary relationships. Despite the importance of a protein's structure and conformational dynamics to its function and thus its fitness, common phylogenetic methods embody minimal biophysical knowledge of proteins. To underscore the biophysical constraints on natural selection, we survey effects of protein mutations, highlighting the physical basis for marginal stability of natural globular proteins and how requirement for kinetic stability and avoidance of misfolding and misinteractions might have affected protein evolution. The biophysical underpinnings of these effects have been addressed by models with an explicit coarse-grained spatial representation of the polypeptide chain. Sequence–structure mappings based on such models are powerful conceptual tools that rationalize mutational robustness, evolvability, epistasis, promiscuous function performed by ‘hidden’ conformational states, resolution of adaptive conflicts and conformational switches in the evolution from one protein fold to another. Recently, protein biophysics has been applied to derive more accurate evolutionary accounts of sequence data. Methods have also been developed to exploit sequence-based evolutionary information to predict biophysical behaviours of proteins. The success of these approaches demonstrates a deep synergy between the fields of protein biophysics and protein evolution. PMID:25165599

  4. Mechanisms of protein evolution and their application to protein engineering.

    PubMed

    Glasner, Margaret E; Gerlt, John A; Babbitt, Patricia C

    2007-01-01

    Protein engineering holds great promise for the development of new biosensors, diagnostics, therapeutics, and agents for bioremediation. Despite some remarkable successes in experimental and computational protein design, engineered proteins rarely achieve the efficiency or specificity of natural enzymes. Current protein design methods utilize evolutionary concepts, including mutation, recombination, and selection, but the inability to fully recapitulate the success of natural evolution suggests that some evolutionary principles have not been fully exploited. One aspect of protein engineering that has received little attention is how to select the most promising proteins to serve as templates, or scaffolds, for engineering. Two evolutionary concepts that could provide a rational basis for template selection are the conservation of catalytic mechanisms and functional promiscuity. Knowledge of the catalytic motifs responsible for conserved aspects of catalysis in mechanistically diverse superfamilies could be used to identify promising templates for protein engineering. Second, protein evolution often proceeds through promiscuous intermediates, suggesting that templates which are naturally promiscuous for a target reaction could enhance protein engineering strategies. This review explores these ideas and alternative hypotheses concerning protein evolution and engineering. Future research will determine if application of these principles will lead to a protein engineering methodology governed by predictable rules for designing efficient, novel catalysts.

  5. Protein engineering methods applied to membrane protein targets.

    PubMed

    Lluis, M W; Godfroy, J I; Yin, H

    2013-02-01

    Genes encoding membrane proteins have been estimated to comprise as much as 30% of the human genome. Among these membrane, proteins are a large number of signaling receptors, transporters, ion channels and enzymes that are vital to cellular regulation, metabolism and homeostasis. While many membrane proteins are considered high-priority targets for drug design, there is a dearth of structural and biochemical information on them. This lack of information stems from the inherent insolubility and instability of transmembrane domains, which prevents easy obtainment of high-resolution crystals to specifically study structure-function relationships. In part, this lack of structures has greatly impeded our understanding in the field of membrane proteins. One method that can be used to enhance our understanding is directed evolution, a molecular biology method that mimics natural selection to engineer proteins that have specific phenotypes. It is a powerful technique that has considerable success with globular proteins, notably the engineering of protein therapeutics. With respect to transmembrane protein targets, this tool may be underutilized. Another powerful tool to investigate membrane protein structure-function relationships is computational modeling. This review will discuss these protein engineering methods and their tremendous potential in the study of membrane proteins.

  6. The Proteins API: accessing key integrated protein and genome information.

    PubMed

    Nightingale, Andrew; Antunes, Ricardo; Alpi, Emanuele; Bursteinas, Borisas; Gonzales, Leonardo; Liu, Wudong; Luo, Jie; Qi, Guoying; Turner, Edd; Martin, Maria

    2017-04-05

    The Proteins API provides searching and programmatic access to protein and associated genomics data such as curated protein sequence positional annotations from UniProtKB, as well as mapped variation and proteomics data from large scale data sources (LSS). Using the coordinates service, researchers are able to retrieve the genomic sequence coordinates for proteins in UniProtKB. This, the LSS genomics and proteomics data for UniProt proteins is programmatically only available through this service. A Swagger UI has been implemented to provide documentation, an interface for users, with little or no programming experience, to 'talk' to the services to quickly and easily formulate queries with the services and obtain dynamically generated source code for popular programming languages, such as Java, Perl, Python and Ruby. Search results are returned as standard JSON, XML or GFF data objects. The Proteins API is a scalable, reliable, fast, easy to use RESTful services that provides a broad protein information resource for users to ask questions based upon their field of expertise and allowing them to gain an integrated overview of protein annotations available to aid their knowledge gain on proteins in biological processes. The Proteins API is available at (http://www.ebi.ac.uk/proteins/api/doc).

  7. Protein subcellular localization assays using split fluorescent proteins

    DOEpatents

    Waldo, Geoffrey S.; Cabantous, Stephanie

    2009-09-08

    The invention provides protein subcellular localization assays using split fluorescent protein systems. The assays are conducted in living cells, do not require fixation and washing steps inherent in existing immunostaining and related techniques, and permit rapid, non-invasive, direct visualization of protein localization in living cells. The split fluorescent protein systems used in the practice of the invention generally comprise two or more self-complementing fragments of a fluorescent protein, such as GFP, wherein one or more of the fragments correspond to one or more beta-strand microdomains and are used to "tag" proteins of interest, and a complementary "assay" fragment of the fluorescent protein. Either or both of the fragments may be functionalized with a subcellular targeting sequence enabling it to be expressed in or directed to a particular subcellular compartment (i.e., the nucleus).

  8. Commercial Protein Crystal Growth: Protein Crystallization Facility (CPCG-H)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    DeLucas, Lawrence J.

    2002-12-01

    Within the human body, there are thousands of different proteins that serve a variety of different functions, such as making it possible for red blood cells to carry oxygen in our bodies. Yet proteins can also be involved in diseases. Each protein has a particular chemical structure, which means it has a unique shape. It is this three-dimensional shape that allows each protein to do its job by interacting with chemicals or binding with other proteins. If researchers can determine the shape, or shapes, of a protein, they can learn how it works. This information can then be used by the pharmaceutical industry to develop new drugs or improve the way medications work. The NASA Commercial Space Center sponsoring this experiment - the Center for Biophysical Sciences and Engineering at the University of Alabama at Birmingham - has more than 60 industry and academic partners who grow protein crystals and use the information in drug design projects.

  9. Protein – Which is Best?

    PubMed Central

    Hoffman, Jay R.; Falvo, Michael J.

    2004-01-01

    Protein intake that exceeds the recommended daily allowance is widely accepted for both endurance and power athletes. However, considering the variety of proteins that are available much less is known concerning the benefits of consuming one protein versus another. The purpose of this paper is to identify and analyze key factors in order to make responsible recommendations to both the general and athletic populations. Evaluation of a protein is fundamental in determining its appropriateness in the human diet. Proteins that are of inferior content and digestibility are important to recognize and restrict or limit in the diet. Similarly, such knowledge will provide an ability to identify proteins that provide the greatest benefit and should be consumed. The various techniques utilized to rate protein will be discussed. Traditionally, sources of dietary protein are seen as either being of animal or vegetable origin. Animal sources provide a complete source of protein (i.e. containing all essential amino acids), whereas vegetable sources generally lack one or more of the essential amino acids. Animal sources of dietary protein, despite providing a complete protein and numerous vitamins and minerals, have some health professionals concerned about the amount of saturated fat common in these foods compared to vegetable sources. The advent of processing techniques has shifted some of this attention and ignited the sports supplement marketplace with derivative products such as whey, casein and soy. Individually, these products vary in quality and applicability to certain populations. The benefits that these particular proteins possess are discussed. In addition, the impact that elevated protein consumption has on health and safety issues (i.e. bone health, renal function) are also reviewed. Key Points Higher protein needs are seen in athletic populations. Animal proteins is an important source of protein, however potential health concerns do exist from a diet of protein

  10. Experimental and bioinformatic approaches for interrogating protein-protein interactions to determine protein function.

    PubMed

    Droit, Arnaud; Poirier, Guy G; Hunter, Joanna M

    2005-04-01

    An ambitious goal of proteomics is to elucidate the structure, interactions and functions of all proteins within cells and organisms. One strategy to determine protein function is to identify the protein-protein interactions. The increasing use of high-throughput and large-scale bioinformatics-based studies has generated a massive amount of data stored in a number of different databases. A challenge for bioinformatics is to explore this disparate data and to uncover biologically relevant interactions and pathways. In parallel, there is clearly a need for the development of approaches that can predict novel protein-protein interaction networks in silico. Here, we present an overview of different experimental and bioinformatic methods to elucidate protein-protein interactions.

  11. Viruses and viral proteins.

    PubMed

    Verdaguer, Nuria; Ferrero, Diego; Murthy, Mathur R N

    2014-11-01

    For more than 30 years X-ray crystallography has been by far the most powerful approach for determining the structures of viruses and viral proteins at atomic resolution. The information provided by these structures, which covers many important aspects of the viral life cycle such as cell-receptor recognition, viral entry, nucleic acid transfer and genome replication, has extensively enriched our vision of the virus world. Many of the structures available correspond to potential targets for antiviral drugs against important human pathogens. This article provides an overview of the current knowledge of different structural aspects of the above-mentioned processes.

  12. Prion protein and cancers.

    PubMed

    Yang, Xiaowen; Zhang, Yan; Zhang, Lihua; He, Tianlin; Zhang, Jie; Li, Chaoyang

    2014-06-01

    The normal cellular prion protein, PrP(C) is a highly conserved and widely expressed cell surface glycoprotein in all mammals. The expression of PrP is pivotal in the pathogenesis of prion diseases; however, the normal physiological functions of PrP(C) remain incompletely understood. Based on the studies in cell models, a plethora of functions have been attributed to PrP(C). In this paper, we reviewed the potential roles that PrP(C) plays in cell physiology and focused on its contribution to tumorigenesis.

  13. Viruses and viral proteins

    PubMed Central

    Verdaguer, Nuria; Ferrero, Diego; Murthy, Mathur R. N.

    2014-01-01

    For more than 30 years X-ray crystallography has been by far the most powerful approach for determining the structures of viruses and viral proteins at atomic resolution. The information provided by these structures, which covers many important aspects of the viral life cycle such as cell-receptor recognition, viral entry, nucleic acid transfer and genome replication, has extensively enriched our vision of the virus world. Many of the structures available correspond to potential targets for antiviral drugs against important human pathogens. This article provides an overview of the current knowledge of different structural aspects of the above-mentioned processes. PMID:25485129

  14. Tetramer formation in Arabidopsis MADS domain proteins: analysis of a protein-protein interaction network

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background MADS domain proteins are transcription factors that coordinate several important developmental processes in plants. These proteins interact with other MADS domain proteins to form dimers, and it has been proposed that they are able to associate as tetrameric complexes that regulate transcription of target genes. Whether the formation of functional tetramers is a widespread property of plant MADS domain proteins, or it is specific to few of these transcriptional regulators remains unclear. Results We analyzed the structure of the network of physical interactions among MADS domain proteins in Arabidopsis thaliana. We determined the abundance of subgraphs that represent the connection pattern expected for a MADS domain protein heterotetramer. These subgraphs were significantly more abundant in the MADS domain protein interaction network than in randomized analogous networks. Importantly, these subgraphs are not significantly frequent in a protein interaction network of TCP plant transcription factors, when compared to expectation by chance. In addition, we found that MADS domain proteins in tetramer-like subgraphs are more likely to be expressed jointly than proteins in other subgraphs. This effect is mainly due to proteins in the monophyletic MIKC clade, as there is no association between tetramer-like subgraphs and co-expression for proteins outside this clade. Conclusions Our results support that the tendency to form functional tetramers is widespread in the MADS domain protein-protein interaction network. Our observations also suggest that this trend is prevalent, or perhaps exclusive, for proteins in the MIKC clade. Because it is possible to retrodict several experimental results from our analyses, our work can be an important aid to make new predictions and facilitates experimental research on plant MADS domain proteins. PMID:24468197

  15. [Protein phosphatases: structure and function].

    PubMed

    Bulanova, E G; Budagian, V M

    1994-01-01

    The process of protein and enzyme systems phosphorylation is necessary for cell growth, differentiation and preparation for division and mitosis. The conformation changes of protein as a result of phosphorylation lead to increased enzyme activity and enhanced affinity to substrates. A large group of enzymes--protein kinases--is responsible for phosphorylation process in cell, which are divided into tyrosine- and serine-threonine-kinases depending on their ability to phosphorylate appropriate amino acid residues. In this review has been considered the functional importance and structure of protein phosphatases--enzymes, which are functional antagonists of protein kinases.

  16. Protein nanotechnology: what is it?

    PubMed

    Gerrard, Juliet A

    2013-01-01

    Protein nanotechnology is an emerging field that is still defining itself. It embraces the intersection of protein science, which exists naturally at the nanoscale, and the burgeoning field of nanotechnology. In this opening chapter, a select review is given of some of the exciting nanostructures that have already been created using proteins, and the sorts of applications that protein engineers are reaching towards in the nanotechnology space. This provides an introduction to the rest of the volume, which provides inspirational case studies, along with tips and tools to manipulate proteins into new forms and architectures, beyond Nature's original intentions.

  17. Green fluorescent protein: A perspective

    PubMed Central

    Remington, S James

    2011-01-01

    A brief personal perspective is provided for green fluorescent protein (GFP), covering the period 1994–2011. The topics discussed are primarily those in which my research group has made a contribution and include structure and function of the GFP polypeptide, the mechanism of fluorescence emission, excited state protein transfer, the design of ratiometric fluorescent protein biosensors and an overview of the fluorescent proteins derived from coral reef animals. Structure-function relationships in photoswitchable fluorescent proteins and nonfluorescent chromoproteins are also briefly covered. PMID:21714025

  18. Green fluorescent protein: a perspective.

    PubMed

    Remington, S James

    2011-09-01

    A brief personal perspective is provided for green fluorescent protein (GFP), covering the period 1994-2011. The topics discussed are primarily those in which my research group has made a contribution and include structure and function of the GFP polypeptide, the mechanism of fluorescence emission, excited state protein transfer, the design of ratiometric fluorescent protein biosensors and an overview of the fluorescent proteins derived from coral reef animals. Structure-function relationships in photoswitchable fluorescent proteins and nonfluorescent chromoproteins are also briefly covered.

  19. Imaging individual green fluorescent proteins

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pierce, Daniel W.; Hom-Booher, Nora; Vale, Ronald D.

    1997-07-01

    Recent advances in fluorescence microscopy techniques have allowed the video-time imaging of single molecules of fluorescent dyes covalently bound to proteins in aqueous environments. However, the techniques have not been exploited fully because proteins can be difficult to label, and dye modification may cause partial or complete loss of activity. These difficulties could be circumvented by fusing proteins to green fluorescent protein (GFP) of the jellyfish Aequorea victoria. Here we report that single S65T mutant GFP molecules can be imaged using total internal reflection microscopy, and that ATP-driven movement of an individual kinesin molecule (a microtubule motor protein) fused to GFP can be readily observed.

  20. [Protein nutrition and physical activity].

    PubMed

    Navarro, M P

    1992-09-01

    The relationship between physical exercise and diet in order to optimize performance is getting growing interest. This review examines protein needs and protein intakes as well as the role of protein in the body and the metabolic changes occurring at the synthesis and catabolic levels during exercise. Protein synthesis in muscle or liver, amino acids oxidation, glucose production via gluconeogenesis from amino acids, etc., are modified, and consequently plasma and urinary nitrogen metabolites are affected. A brief comment on the advantages, disadvantages and forms of different protein supplements for sportsmen is given.

  1. Protein-protein interaction network-based detection of functionally similar proteins within species.

    PubMed

    Song, Baoxing; Wang, Fen; Guo, Yang; Sang, Qing; Liu, Min; Li, Dengyun; Fang, Wei; Zhang, Deli

    2012-07-01

    Although functionally similar proteins across species have been widely studied, functionally similar proteins within species showing low sequence similarity have not been examined in detail. Identification of these proteins is of significant importance for understanding biological functions, evolution of protein families, progression of co-evolution, and convergent evolution and others which cannot be obtained by detection of functionally similar proteins across species. Here, we explored a method of detecting functionally similar proteins within species based on graph theory. After denoting protein-protein interaction networks using graphs, we split the graphs into subgraphs using the 1-hop method. Proteins with functional similarities in a species were detected using a method of modified shortest path to compare these subgraphs and to find the eligible optimal results. Using seven protein-protein interaction networks and this method, some functionally similar proteins with low sequence similarity that cannot detected by sequence alignment were identified. By analyzing the results, we found that, sometimes, it is difficult to separate homologous from convergent evolution. Evaluation of the performance of our method by gene ontology term overlap showed that the precision of our method was excellent.

  2. Toponomics: studying protein-protein interactions and protein networks in intact tissue.

    PubMed

    Pierre, Sandra; Scholich, Klaus

    2010-04-01

    The function of a protein is determined on several levels including the genome, transcriptome, proteome, and the recently introduced toponome. The toponome describes the topology of all proteins, protein complexes and protein networks which constitute and influence the microenvironment of a given protein. It has long been known that cellular function or dysfunction of proteins strongly depends on their microenvironment and even small changes in protein arrangements can dramatically alter their activity/function. Thus, deciphering the topology of the multi-dimensional networks which control normal and disease-related pathways will give a better understanding of the mechanisms underlying disease development. While various powerful proteomic tools allow simultaneous quantification of proteins, only a limited number of techniques are available to visualize protein networks in intact cells and tissues. This review discusses a novel approach to map and decipher functional molecular networks of proteins in intact cells or tissues. Multi-epitope-ligand-cartography (MELC) is an imaging technology that identifies and quantifies protein networks at the subcellular level of morphologically-intact specimens. This immunohistochemistry-based method allows serial visualization and biomathematical analysis of up to 100 cellular components using fluorescence-labelled tags. The resulting toponome maps, simultaneously ranging from the subcellular to the supracellular scale, have the potential to provide the basis for a mathematical description of the dynamic topology of protein networks, and will complement current proteomic data to enhance the understanding of physiological and pathophysiological cell functions.

  3. THE PROTEIN PROBLEM OF CHINA.

    PubMed

    Adolph, W H

    1944-07-07

    (1) The protein intake of China is approximately 80 grams per capita per day, 5 per cent. of which is animal protein. (2) The lower digestibility of the protein in vegetarian diets causes the effective protein intake to be much less than is indicated by this figure. (3) Attempts in the laboratory to devise an adequate diet using foods from vegetarian sources only have not met with marked success. (4) The use of mixed cereals in the diet has provided protein of higher biological value; this habit may reflect the attempt on the part of the rural peoples to work out a more effective protein intake. (5) It is suggested that in China some of the cereal protein in the dietary intake be replaced by more leaf vegetable protein. (6) The question is raised as to how far it is feasible in the war economy to replace animal protein by vegetable protein. (7) In long-term plans for food relief in the Far East it is urged that an emphasis be placed on the protein factor.

  4. Intrinsic Localized Modes in Proteins

    PubMed Central

    Nicolaï, Adrien; Delarue, Patrice; Senet, Patrick

    2015-01-01

    Protein dynamics is essential for proteins to function. Here we predicted the existence of rare, large nonlinear excitations, termed intrinsic localized modes (ILMs), of the main chain of proteins based on all-atom molecular dynamics simulations of two fast-folder proteins and of a rigid α/β protein at 300 K and at 380 K in solution. These nonlinear excitations arise from the anharmonicity of the protein dynamics. The ILMs were detected by computing the Shannon entropy of the protein main-chain fluctuations. In the non-native state (significantly explored at 380 K), the probability of their excitation was increased by a factor between 9 and 28 for the fast-folder proteins and by a factor 2 for the rigid protein. This enhancement in the non-native state was due to glycine, as demonstrated by simulations in which glycine was mutated to alanine. These ILMs might play a functional role in the flexible regions of proteins and in proteins in a non-native state (i.e. misfolded or unfolded states). PMID:26658321

  5. The Papillomavirus E2 proteins

    SciTech Connect

    McBride, Alison A.

    2013-10-15

    The papillomavirus E2 proteins are pivotal to the viral life cycle and have well characterized functions in transcriptional regulation, initiation of DNA replication and partitioning the viral genome. The E2 proteins also function in vegetative DNA replication, post-transcriptional processes and possibly packaging. This review describes structural and functional aspects of the E2 proteins and their binding sites on the viral genome. It is intended to be a reference guide to this viral protein. - Highlights: • Overview of E2 protein functions. • Structural domains of the papillomavirus E2 proteins. • Analysis of E2 binding sites in different genera of papillomaviruses. • Compilation of E2 associated proteins. • Comparison of key mutations in distinct E2 functions.

  6. Mathematical methods for protein science

    SciTech Connect

    Hart, W.; Istrail, S.; Atkins, J.

    1997-12-31

    Understanding the structure and function of proteins is a fundamental endeavor in molecular biology. Currently, over 100,000 protein sequences have been determined by experimental methods. The three dimensional structure of the protein determines its function, but there are currently less than 4,000 structures known to atomic resolution. Accordingly, techniques to predict protein structure from sequence have an important role in aiding the understanding of the Genome and the effects of mutations in genetic disease. The authors describe current efforts at Sandia to better understand the structure of proteins through rigorous mathematical analyses of simple lattice models. The efforts have focused on two aspects of protein science: mathematical structure prediction, and inverse protein folding.

  7. Protein Repeats from First Principles.

    PubMed

    Turjanski, Pablo; Parra, R Gonzalo; Espada, Rocío; Becher, Verónica; Ferreiro, Diego U

    2016-04-05

    Some natural proteins display recurrent structural patterns. Despite being highly similar at the tertiary structure level, repeating patterns within a single repeat protein can be extremely variable at the sequence level. We use a mathematical definition of a repetition and investigate the occurrences of these in sequences of different protein families. We found that long stretches of perfect repetitions are infrequent in individual natural proteins, even for those which are known to fold into structures of recurrent structural motifs. We found that natural repeat proteins are indeed repetitive in their families, exhibiting abundant stretches of 6 amino acids or longer that are perfect repetitions in the reference family. We provide a systematic quantification for this repetitiveness. We show that this form of repetitiveness is not exclusive of repeat proteins, but also occurs in globular domains. A by-product of this work is a fast quantification of the likelihood of a protein to belong to a family.

  8. Protein Repeats from First Principles

    PubMed Central

    Turjanski, Pablo; Parra, R. Gonzalo; Espada, Rocío; Becher, Verónica; Ferreiro, Diego U.

    2016-01-01

    Some natural proteins display recurrent structural patterns. Despite being highly similar at the tertiary structure level, repeating patterns within a single repeat protein can be extremely variable at the sequence level. We use a mathematical definition of a repetition and investigate the occurrences of these in sequences of different protein families. We found that long stretches of perfect repetitions are infrequent in individual natural proteins, even for those which are known to fold into structures of recurrent structural motifs. We found that natural repeat proteins are indeed repetitive in their families, exhibiting abundant stretches of 6 amino acids or longer that are perfect repetitions in the reference family. We provide a systematic quantification for this repetitiveness. We show that this form of repetitiveness is not exclusive of repeat proteins, but also occurs in globular domains. A by-product of this work is a fast quantification of the likelihood of a protein to belong to a family. PMID:27044676

  9. Protein crystal growth in microgravity

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rosenblum, William M.; Delucas, Lawrence J.; Wilson, William W.

    1989-01-01

    Major advances have been made in several of the experimental aspects of protein crystallography, leaving protein crystallization as one of the few remaining bottlenecks. As a result, it has become important that the science of protein crystal growth is better understood and that improved methods for protein crystallization are developed. Preliminary experiments with both small molecules and proteins indicate that microgravity may beneficially affect crystal growth. For this reason, a series of protein crystal growth experiments using the Space Shuttle was initiated. The preliminary space experiments were used to evolve prototype hardware that will form the basis for a more advanced system that can be used to evaluate effects of gravity on protein crystal growth. Various optical techniques are being utilized to monitor the crystal growth process from the incipient or nucleation stage and throughout the growth phase. The eventual goal of these studies is to develop a system which utilizes optical monitoring for dynamic control of the crystallization process.

  10. Water-transporting proteins.

    PubMed

    Zeuthen, Thomas

    2010-04-01

    Transport through lipids and aquaporins is osmotic and entirely driven by the difference in osmotic pressure. Water transport in cotransporters and uniporters is different: Water can be cotransported, energized by coupling to the substrate flux by a mechanism closely associated with protein. In the K(+)/Cl(-) and the Na(+)/K(+)/2Cl(-) cotransporters, water is entirely cotransported, while water transport in glucose uniporters and Na(+)-coupled transporters of nutrients and neurotransmitters takes place by both osmosis and cotransport. The molecular mechanism behind cotransport of water is not clear. It is associated with the substrate movements in aqueous pathways within the protein; a conventional unstirred layer mechanism can be ruled out, due to high rates of diffusion in the cytoplasm. The physiological roles of the various modes of water transport are reviewed in relation to epithelial transport. Epithelial water transport is energized by the movements of ions, but how the coupling takes place is uncertain. All epithelia can transport water uphill against an osmotic gradient, which is hard to explain by simple osmosis. Furthermore, genetic removal of aquaporins has not given support to osmosis as the exclusive mode of transport. Water cotransport can explain the coupling between ion and water transport, a major fraction of transepithelial water transport and uphill water transport. Aquaporins enhance water transport by utilizing osmotic gradients and cause the osmolarity of the transportate to approach isotonicity.

  11. Hyperquenching for protein cryocrystallography

    PubMed Central

    Warkentin, Matthew; Berejnov, Viatcheslav; Husseini, Naji S.; Thorne, Robert E.

    2010-01-01

    When samples having volumes characteristic of protein crystals are plunge cooled in liquid nitrogen or propane, most cooling occurs in the cold gas layer above the liquid. By removing this cold gas layer, cooling rates for small samples and modest plunge velocities are increased to 1.5 × 104 K s−1, with increases of a factor of 100 over current best practice possible with 10 μm samples. Glycerol concentrations required to eliminate water crystallization in protein-free aqueous mixtures drop from ∼28% w/v to as low as 6% w/v. These results will allow many crystals to go from crystallization tray to liquid cryogen to X-ray beam without cryoprotectants. By reducing or eliminating the need for cryoprotectants in growth solutions, they may also simplify the search for crystallization conditions and for optimal screens. The results presented here resolve many puzzles, such as why plunge cooling in liquid nitrogen or propane has, until now, not yielded significantly better diffraction quality than gas-stream cooling. PMID:20461232

  12. Peptides and proteins

    SciTech Connect

    Bachovchin, W.W.; Unkefer, C.J.

    1994-12-01

    Advances in magnetic resonance and vibrational spectroscopy make it possible to derive detailed structural information about biomolecular structures in solution. These techniques are critically dependent on the availability of labeled compounds. For example, NMR techniques used today to derive peptide and protein structures require uniformity {sup 13}C-and {sup 15}N-labeled samples that are derived biosynthetically from (U-6-{sup 13}C) glucose. These experiments are possible now because, during the 1970s, the National Stable Isotope Resource developed algal methods for producing (U-6-{sup 13}C) glucose. If NMR techniques are to be used to study larger proteins, we will need sophisticated labelling patterns in amino acids that employ a combination of {sup 2}H, {sup 13}C, and {sup 15}N labeling. The availability of these specifically labeled amino acids requires a renewed investment in new methods for chemical synthesis of labeled amino acids. The development of new magnetic resonance or vibrational techniques to elucidate biomolecular structure will be seriously impeded if we do not see rapid progress in labeling technology. Investment in labeling chemistry is as important as investment in the development of advanced spectroscopic tools.

  13. An intravascular protein osmometer.

    PubMed

    Henson, J W; Brace, R A

    1983-05-01

    Our purpose was to develop an intravascular osmometer for measuring the colloid (i.e., protein) osmotic pressure (COP) of circulating blood. A semipermeable hollow fiber from a Cordis Dow artificial kidney (C-DAK 4000) was attached to polyethylene tubing on one end, filled with saline, and sealed at the other end. This was small enough to be inserted into the vasculature of research animals. Protein osmotic pressure plus hydrostatic pressure was measured by a Statham pressure transducer attached to the hollow fiber. Simultaneously, a second catheter and transducer was used to measure hydrostatic pressure, which was subtracted from the pressure measured from the fiber with an on-line computer. The system was documented by a variety of tests. The colloid osmotic pressure vs. albumin concentration curve determined with the fiber is identical to the curve determined by standard membrane osmometry. The time constant for 2- and 8-cm fibers was 2.6 +/- 0.6 and 1.5 +/- 0.5 (+/- SD) min, respectively. The reflection coefficient (+/- SD) of the fiber for NaCl is 0.042 +/- 0.019 (n = 38); COP measured at varying temperatures (absolute scale) changed linearly as expected from COP = nCRT (i.e., van't Hoff's law). Finally, hollow-fiber osmometers were inserted into femoral veins of dogs and sheep, and blood COP was continuously recorded during osmotic manipulations. In conclusion, we attempted to develop and document a simple method for continuous measurement of intravascular colloid osmotic pressure.

  14. Introduction to protein crystallization

    PubMed Central

    McPherson, Alexander; Gavira, Jose A.

    2014-01-01

    Protein crystallization was discovered by chance about 150 years ago and was developed in the late 19th century as a powerful purification tool and as a demonstration of chemical purity. The crystallization of proteins, nucleic acids and large biological complexes, such as viruses, depends on the creation of a solution that is supersaturated in the macromolecule but exhibits conditions that do not significantly perturb its natural state. Supersaturation is produced through the addition of mild precipitating agents such as neutral salts or polymers, and by the manipulation of various parameters that include temperature, ionic strength and pH. Also important in the crystallization process are factors that can affect the structural state of the macromolecule, such as metal ions, inhibitors, cofactors or other conventional small molecules. A variety of approaches have been developed that combine the spectrum of factors that effect and promote crystallization, and among the most widely used are vapor diffusion, dialysis, batch and liquid–liquid diffusion. Successes in macromolecular crystallization have multiplied rapidly in recent years owing to the advent of practical, easy-to-use screening kits and the application of laboratory robotics. A brief review will be given here of the most popular methods, some guiding principles and an overview of current technologies. PMID:24419610

  15. General introduction: recombinant protein production and purification of insoluble proteins.

    PubMed

    Ferrer-Miralles, Neus; Saccardo, Paolo; Corchero, José Luis; Xu, Zhikun; García-Fruitós, Elena

    2015-01-01

    Proteins are synthesized in heterologous systems because of the impossibility to obtain satisfactory yields from natural sources. The production of soluble and functional recombinant proteins is among the main goals in the biotechnological field. In this context, it is important to point out that under stress conditions, protein folding machinery is saturated and this promotes protein misfolding and, consequently, protein aggregation. Thus, the selection of the optimal expression organism and the most appropriate growth conditions to minimize the formation of insoluble proteins should be done according to the protein characteristics and downstream requirements. Escherichia coli is the most popular recombinant protein expression system despite the great development achieved so far by eukaryotic expression systems. Besides, other prokaryotic expression systems, such as lactic acid bacteria and psychrophilic bacteria, are gaining interest in this field. However, it is worth mentioning that prokaryotic expression system poses, in many cases, severe restrictions for a successful heterologous protein production. Thus, eukaryotic systems such as mammalian cells, insect cells, yeast, filamentous fungus, and microalgae are an interesting alternative for the production of these difficult-to-express proteins.

  16. Regulators of G protein signalling proteins in the human myometrium.

    PubMed

    Ladds, Graham; Zervou, Sevasti; Vatish, Manu; Thornton, Steven; Davey, John

    2009-05-21

    The contractile state of the human myometrium is controlled by extracellular signals that promote relaxation or contraction. Many of these signals function through G protein-coupled receptors at the cell surface, stimulating heterotrimeric G proteins and leading to changes in the activity of effector proteins responsible for bringing about the response. G proteins can interact with multiple receptors and many different effectors and are key players in the response. Regulators of G protein signalling (RGS) proteins are GTPase activating proteins for heterotrimeric G proteins and help terminate the signal. Little is known about the function of RGS proteins in human myometrium and we have therefore analysed transcript levels for RGS proteins at various stages of pregnancy (non-pregnant, preterm, term non-labouring, term labouring). RGS2 and RGS5 were the most abundantly expressed isolates in each of the patient groups. The levels of RGS4 and RGS16 (and to a lesser extent RGS2 and RGS14) increased in term labouring samples relative to the other groups. Yeast two-hybrid analysis and co-immunoprecipitation in myometrial cells revealed that both RGS2 and RGS5 interact directly with the cytoplasmic tail of the oxytocin receptor, suggesting they might help regulate signalling through this receptor.

  17. Protein oxidation in aging and the removal of oxidized proteins.

    PubMed

    Höhn, Annika; König, Jeannette; Grune, Tilman

    2013-10-30

    Reactive oxygen species (ROS) are generated constantly within cells at low concentrations even under physiological conditions. During aging the levels of ROS can increase due to a limited capacity of antioxidant systems and repair mechanisms. Proteins are among the main targets for oxidants due to their high rate constants for several reactions with ROS and their abundance in biological systems. Protein damage has an important influence on cellular viability since most protein damage is non-repairable, and has deleterious consequences on protein structure and function. In addition, damaged and modified proteins can form cross-links and provide a basis for many senescence-associated alterations and may contribute to a range of human pathologies. Two proteolytic systems are responsible to ensure the maintenance of cellular functions: the proteasomal (UPS) and the lysosomal system. Those degrading systems provide a last line of antioxidative protection, removing irreversible damaged proteins and recycling amino acids for the continuous protein synthesis. But during aging, both systems are affected and their proteolytic activity declines significantly. Here we highlight the recent advantages in the understanding of protein oxidation and the fate of these damaged proteins during aging. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: Posttranslational Protein modifications in biology and Medicine.

  18. Protein-protein interaction network analysis of cirrhosis liver disease

    PubMed Central

    Safaei, Akram; Rezaei Tavirani, Mostafa; Arefi Oskouei, Afsaneh; Zamanian Azodi, Mona; Mohebbi, Seyed Reza; Nikzamir, Abdol Rahim

    2016-01-01

    Aim: Evaluation of biological characteristics of 13 identified proteins of patients with cirrhotic liver disease is the main aim of this research. Background: In clinical usage, liver biopsy remains the gold standard for diagnosis of hepatic fibrosis. Evaluation and confirmation of liver fibrosis stages and severity of chronic diseases require a precise and noninvasive biomarkers. Since the early detection of cirrhosis is a clinical problem, achieving a sensitive, specific and predictive novel method based on biomarkers is an important task. Methods: Essential analysis, such as gene ontology (GO) enrichment and protein-protein interactions (PPI) was undergone EXPASy, STRING Database and DAVID Bioinformatics Resources query. Results: Based on GO analysis, most of proteins are located in the endoplasmic reticulum lumen, intracellular organelle lumen, membrane-enclosed lumen, and extracellular region. The relevant molecular functions are actin binding, metal ion binding, cation binding and ion binding. Cell adhesion, biological adhesion, cellular amino acid derivative, metabolic process and homeostatic process are the related processes. Protein-protein interaction network analysis introduced five proteins (fibroblast growth factor receptor 4, tropomyosin 4, tropomyosin 2 (beta), lectin, Lectin galactoside-binding soluble 3 binding protein and apolipoprotein A-I) as hub and bottleneck proteins. Conclusion: Our result indicates that regulation of lipid metabolism and cell survival are important biological processes involved in cirrhosis disease. More investigation of above mentioned proteins will provide a better understanding of cirrhosis disease. PMID:27099671

  19. A new protein structure representation for efficient protein function prediction.

    PubMed

    Maghawry, Huda A; Mostafa, Mostafa G M; Gharib, Tarek F

    2014-12-01

    One of the challenging problems in bioinformatics is the prediction of protein function. Protein function is the main key that can be used to classify different proteins. Protein function can be inferred experimentally with very small throughput or computationally with very high throughput. Computational methods are sequence based or structure based. Structure-based methods produce more accurate protein function prediction. In this article, we propose a new protein structure representation for efficient protein function prediction. The representation is based on three-dimensional patterns of protein residues. In the analysis, we used protein function based on enzyme activity through six mechanistically diverse enzyme superfamilies: amidohydrolase, crotonase, haloacid dehalogenase, isoprenoid synthase type I, and vicinal oxygen chelate. We applied three different classification methods, naïve Bayes, k-nearest neighbors, and random forest, to predict the enzyme superfamily of a given protein. The prediction accuracy using the proposed representation outperforms a recently introduced representation method that is based only on the distance patterns. The results show that the proposed representation achieved prediction accuracy up to 98%, with improvement of about 10% on average.

  20. Protein transduction assisted by polyethylenimine-cationized carrier proteins.

    PubMed

    Kitazoe, Midori; Murata, Hitoshi; Futami, Junichiro; Maeda, Takashi; Sakaguchi, Masakiyo; Miyazaki, Masahiro; Kosaka, Megumi; Tada, Hiroko; Seno, Masaharu; Huh, Nam-ho; Namba, Masayoshi; Nishikawa, Mitsuo; Maeda, Yoshitake; Yamada, Hidenori

    2005-06-01

    Previously, we have reported that cationized-proteins covalently modified with polyethylenimine (PEI) (direct PEI-cationization) efficiently enter cells and function in the cytosol [Futami et al. (2005) J. Biosci. Bioeng. 99, 95-103]. However, it may be more convenient if a protein could be delivered into cells just by mixing the protein with a PEI-cationized carrier protein having a specific affinity (indirect PEI-cationization). Thus, we prepared PEI-cationized avidin (PEI-avidin), streptavidin (PEI-streptavidin), and protein G (PEI-protein G), and examined whether they could deliver biotinylated proteins and antibodies into living cells. PEI-avidin (and/or PEI-streptavidin) carried biotinylated GFPs into various mammalian cells very efficiently. A GFP variant containing a nuclear localization signal was found to arrive even in the nucleus. The addition of a biotinylated RNase A derivative mixed with PEI-streptavidin to a culture medium of 3T3-SV-40 cells resulted in remarkable cell growth inhibition, suggesting that the biotinylated RNase A derivative entered cells and digested intracellular RNA molecules. Furthermore, the addition of a fluorescein-labeled anti-S100C (beta-actin binding protein) antibody mixed with PEI-protein G to human fibroblasts resulted in the appearance of a fluorescence image of actin-like filamentous structures in the cells. These results indicate that indirect PEI-cationization using non-covalent interaction is as effective as the direct PEI-cationization for the transduction of proteins into living cells and for expression of their functions in the cytosol. Thus, PEI-cationized proteins having a specific affinity for certain molecules such as PEI-streptavidin, PEI-avidin and PEI-protein G are concluded to be widely applicable protein transduction carrier molecules.

  1. Protein-protein interaction network of celiac disease

    PubMed Central

    Zamanian Azodi, Mona; Peyvandi, Hassan; Rostami-Nejad, Mohammad; Safaei, Akram; Rostami, Kamran; Vafaee, Reza; Heidari, Mohammadhossein; Hosseini, Mostafa; Zali, Mohammad Reza

    2016-01-01

    Aim: The aim of this study is to investigate the Protein-Protein Interaction Network of Celiac Disease. Background: Celiac disease (CD) is an autoimmune disease with susceptibility of individuals to gluten of wheat, rye and barley. Understanding the molecular mechanisms and involved pathway may lead to the development of drug target discovery. The protein interaction network is one of the supportive fields to discover the pathogenesis biomarkers for celiac disease. Material and methods: In the present study, we collected the articles that focused on the proteomic data in celiac disease. According to the gene expression investigations of these articles, 31 candidate proteins were selected for this study. The networks of related differentially expressed protein were explored using Cytoscape 3.3 and the PPI analysis methods such as MCODE and ClueGO. Results: According to the network analysis Ubiquitin C, Heat shock protein 90kDa alpha (cytosolic and Grp94); class A, B and 1 member, Heat shock 70kDa protein, and protein 5 (glucose-regulated protein, 78kDa), T-complex, Chaperon in containing TCP1; subunit 7 (beta) and subunit 4 (delta) and subunit 2 (beta), have been introduced as hub-bottlnecks proteins. HSP90AA1, MKKS, EZR, HSPA14, APOB and CAD have been determined as seed proteins. Conclusion: Chaperons have a bold presentation in curtail area in network therefore these key proteins beside the other hub-bottlneck proteins may be a suitable candidates biomarker panel for diagnosis, prognosis and treatment processes in celiac disease. PMID:27895852

  2. Mitochondrial nucleoid interacting proteins support mitochondrial protein synthesis.

    PubMed

    He, J; Cooper, H M; Reyes, A; Di Re, M; Sembongi, H; Litwin, T R; Gao, J; Neuman, K C; Fearnley, I M; Spinazzola, A; Walker, J E; Holt, I J

    2012-07-01

    Mitochondrial ribosomes and translation factors co-purify with mitochondrial nucleoids of human cells, based on affinity protein purification of tagged mitochondrial DNA binding proteins. Among the most frequently identified proteins were ATAD3 and prohibitin, which have been identified previously as nucleoid components, using a variety of methods. Both proteins are demonstrated to be required for mitochondrial protein synthesis in human cultured cells, and the major binding partner of ATAD3 is the mitochondrial ribosome. Altered ATAD3 expression also perturbs mtDNA maintenance and replication. These findings suggest an intimate association between nucleoids and the machinery of protein synthesis in mitochondria. ATAD3 and prohibitin are tightly associated with the mitochondrial membranes and so we propose that they support nucleic acid complexes at the inner membrane of the mitochondrion.

  3. Computational Prediction of Protein-Protein Interactions of Human Tyrosinase

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Su-Fang; Oh, Sangho; Si, Yue-Xiu; Wang, Zhi-Jiang; Han, Hong-Yan; Lee, Jinhyuk; Qian, Guo-Ying

    2012-01-01

    The various studies on tyrosinase have recently gained the attention of researchers due to their potential application values and the biological functions. In this study, we predicted the 3D structure of human tyrosinase and simulated the protein-protein interactions between tyrosinase and three binding partners, four and half LIM domains 2 (FHL2), cytochrome b-245 alpha polypeptide (CYBA), and RNA-binding motif protein 9 (RBM9). Our interaction simulations showed significant binding energy scores of −595.3 kcal/mol for FHL2, −859.1 kcal/mol for CYBA, and −821.3 kcal/mol for RBM9. We also investigated the residues of each protein facing toward the predicted site of interaction with tyrosinase. Our computational predictions will be useful for elucidating the protein-protein interactions of tyrosinase and studying its binding mechanisms. PMID:22577521

  4. Enhanced protein production by engineered zinc finger proteins.

    PubMed

    Reik, Andreas; Zhou, Yuanyue; Collingwood, Trevor N; Warfe, Lyndon; Bartsevich, Victor; Kong, Yanhong; Henning, Karla A; Fallentine, Barrett K; Zhang, Lei; Zhong, Xiaohong; Jouvenot, Yann; Jamieson, Andrew C; Rebar, Edward J; Case, Casey C; Korman, Alan; Li, Xiao-Yong; Black, Amelia; King, David J; Gregory, Philip D

    2007-08-01

    Increasing the yield of therapeutic proteins from mammalian production cell lines reduces costs and decreases the time to market. To this end, we engineered a zinc finger protein transcription factor (ZFP TF) that binds a DNA sequence within the promoter driving transgene expression. This ZFP TF enabled >100% increase in protein yield from CHO cells in transient, stable, and fermentor production run settings. Expression vectors engineered to carry up to 10 ZFP binding sites further enhanced ZFP-mediated increases in protein production up to approximately 500%. The multimerized ZFP binding sites function independently of the promoter, and therefore across vector platforms. CHO cell lines stably expressing ZFP TFs demonstrated growth characteristics similar to parental cell lines. ZFP TF expression and gains in protein production were stable over >30 generations in the absence of antibiotic selection. Our results demonstrate that ZFP TFs can rapidly and stably increase protein production in mammalian cells.

  5. Protein-water dynamics in antifreeze protein III activity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xu, Yao; Bäumer, Alexander; Meister, Konrad; Bischak, Connor G.; DeVries, Arthur L.; Leitner, David M.; Havenith, Martina

    2016-03-01

    We combine Terahertz absorption spectroscopy (THz) and molecular dynamics (MD) simulations to investigate the underlying molecular mechanism for the antifreeze activity of one class of antifreeze protein, antifreeze protein type III (AFP-III) with a focus on the collective water hydrogen bond dynamics near the protein. After summarizing our previous work on AFPs, we present a new investigation of the effects of cosolutes on protein antifreeze activity by adding sodium citrate to the protein solution of AFP-III. Our results reveal that for AFP-III, unlike some other AFPs, the addition of the osmolyte sodium citrate does not affect the hydrogen bond dynamics at the protein surface significantly, as indicated by concentration dependent THz measurements. The present data, in combination with our previous THz measurements and molecular simulations, confirm that while long-range solvent perturbation is a necessary condition for the antifreeze activity of AFP-III, the local binding affinity determines the size of the hysteresis.

  6. Proteins interacting with cloning scars: a source of false positive protein-protein interactions.

    PubMed

    Banks, Charles A S; Boanca, Gina; Lee, Zachary T; Florens, Laurence; Washburn, Michael P

    2015-02-23

    A common approach for exploring the interactome, the network of protein-protein interactions in cells, uses a commercially available ORF library to express affinity tagged bait proteins; these can be expressed in cells and endogenous cellular proteins that copurify with the bait can be identified as putative interacting proteins using mass spectrometry. Control experiments can be used to limit false-positive results, but in many cases, there are still a surprising number of prey proteins that appear to copurify specifically with the bait. Here, we have identified one source of false-positive interactions in such studies. We have found that a combination of: 1) the variable sequence of the C-terminus of the bait with 2) a C-terminal valine "cloning scar" present in a commercially available ORF library, can in some cases create a peptide motif that results in the aberrant co-purification of endogenous cellular proteins. Control experiments may not identify false positives resulting from such artificial motifs, as aberrant binding depends on sequences that vary from one bait to another. It is possible that such cryptic protein binding might occur in other systems using affinity tagged proteins; this study highlights the importance of conducting careful follow-up studies where novel protein-protein interactions are suspected.

  7. Protein-protein interactions in complex cosolvent solutions.

    PubMed

    Javid, Nadeem; Vogtt, Karsten; Krywka, Chris; Tolan, Metin; Winter, Roland

    2007-04-02

    The effects of various kosmotropic and chaotropic cosolvents and salts on the intermolecular interaction potential of positively charged lysozyme is evaluated at varying protein concentrations by using synchrotron small-angle X-ray scattering in combination with liquid-state theoretical approaches. The experimentally derived static structure factors S(Q) obtained without and with added cosolvents and salts are analysed with a statistical mechanical model based on the Derjaguin-Landau-Verwey-Overbeek (DLVO) potential, which accounts for repulsive and attractive interactions between the protein molecules. Different cosolvents and salts influence the interactions between protein molecules differently as a result of changes in the hydration level or solvation, in charge screening, specific adsorption of the additives at the protein surface, or increased hydrophobic interactions. Intermolecular interaction effects are significant above protein concentrations of 1 wt %, and with increasing protein concentration, the repulsive nature of the intermolecular pair potential V(r) increases markedly. Kosmotropic cosolvents like glycerol and sucrose exhibit strong concentration-dependent effects on the interaction potential, leading to an increase of repulsive forces between the protein molecules at low to medium high osmolyte concentrations. Addition of trifluoroethanol exhibits a multiphasic effect on V(r) when changing its concentration. Salts like sodium chloride and potassium sulfate exhibit strong concentration-dependent changes of the interaction potential due to charge screening of the positively charged protein molecules. Guanidinium chloride (GdmCl) at low concentrations exhibits a similar charge-screening effect, resulting in increased attractive interactions between the protein molecules. At higher GdmCl concentrations, V(r) becomes more repulsive in nature due to the presence of high concentrations of Gdm(+) ions binding to the protein molecules. Our findings also

  8. Linkers in the structural biology of protein-protein interactions.

    PubMed

    Reddy Chichili, Vishnu Priyanka; Kumar, Veerendra; Sivaraman, J

    2013-02-01

    Linkers or spacers are short amino acid sequences created in nature to separate multiple domains in a single protein. Most of them are rigid and function to prohibit unwanted interactions between the discrete domains. However, Gly-rich linkers are flexible, connecting various domains in a single protein without interfering with the function of each domain. The advent of recombinant DNA technology made it possible to fuse two interacting partners with the introduction of artificial linkers. Often, independent proteins may not exist as stable or structured proteins until they interact with their binding partner, following which they gain stability and the essential structural elements. Gly-rich linkers have been proven useful for these types of unstable interactions, particularly where the interaction is weak and transient, by creating a covalent link between the proteins to form a stable protein-protein complex. Gly-rich linkers are also employed to form stable covalently linked dimers, and to connect two independent domains that create a ligand-binding site or recognition sequence. The lengths of linkers vary from 2 to 31 amino acids, optimized for each condition so that the linker does not impose any constraints on the conformation or interactions of the linked partners. Various structures of covalently linked protein complexes have been described using X-ray crystallography, nuclear magnetic resonance and cryo-electron microscopy techniques. In this review, we evaluate several structural studies where linkers have been used to improve protein quality, to produce stable protein-protein complexes, and to obtain protein dimers.

  9. Geminivirus C3 Protein: Replication Enhancement and Protein Interactions

    PubMed Central

    Settlage, Sharon B.; See, Renee G.; Hanley-Bowdoin, Linda

    2005-01-01

    Most dicot-infecting geminiviruses encode a replication enhancer protein (C3, AL3, or REn) that is required for optimal replication of their small, single-stranded DNA genomes. C3 interacts with C1, the essential viral replication protein that initiates rolling circle replication. C3 also homo-oligomerizes and interacts with at least two host-encoded proteins, proliferating cell nuclear antigen (PCNA) and the retinoblastoma-related protein (pRBR). It has been proposed that protein interactions contribute to C3 function. Using the C3 protein of Tomato yellow leaf curl virus, we examined the impact of mutations to amino acids that are conserved across the C3 protein family on replication enhancement and protein interactions. Surprisingly, many of the mutations did not affect replication enhancement activity of C3 in tobacco protoplasts. Other mutations either enhanced or were detrimental to C3 replication activity. Analysis of mutated proteins in yeast two-hybrid assays indicated that mutations that inactivate C3 replication enhancement activity also reduce or inactivate C3 oligomerization and interaction with C1 and PCNA. In contrast, mutated C3 proteins impaired for pRBR binding are fully functional in replication assays. Hydrophobic residues in the middle of the C3 protein were implicated in C3 interaction with itself, C1, and PCNA, while polar resides at both the N and C termini of the protein are important for C3-pRBR interaction. These experiments established the importance of C3-C3, C3-C1, and C3-PCNA interactions in geminivirus replication. While C3-pRBR interaction is not required for viral replication in cycling cells, it may play a role during infection of differentiated cells in intact plants. PMID:16014949

  10. Proteins, exons and molecular evolution.

    PubMed

    Holland, S K; Blake, C C

    1987-01-01

    The discovery of the eukaryotic gene structure has prompted research into the potential relationship between protein structure and function and the corresponding exon/intron patterns. The exon shuffling hypothesis put forward by Gilbert and Blake suggests the encodement of structural and functional protein elements by exons which can recombine to create novel proteins. This provides an explanation for the relatively rapid evolution of proteins from a few primordial molecules. As the number of gene and protein structures increases, evidence of exon shuffling is becoming more apparent and examples are presented both from modern multi-domain proteins and ancient proteins. Recent work into the chemical properties and catalytic functions of RNA have led to hypotheses based upon the early existence of RNA. These theories suggest that the split gene structure originated in the primordial soup as a result of random RNA synthesis. Stable regions of RNA, or exons, were utilised as primitive enzymes. In response to selective pressures for information storage, the activity was directly transferred from the RNA enzymes or ribozymes, to proteins. These short polypeptides fused together to create larger proteins with a wide range of functions. Recent research into RNA processing and exon size, discussed in this review, provides a clearer insight into the evolutionary development of the gene and protein structure.

  11. Laboratory-Directed Protein Evolution

    PubMed Central

    Yuan, Ling; Kurek, Itzhak; English, James; Keenan, Robert

    2005-01-01

    Systematic approaches to directed evolution of proteins have been documented since the 1970s. The ability to recruit new protein functions arises from the considerable substrate ambiguity of many proteins. The substrate ambiguity of a protein can be interpreted as the evolutionary potential that allows a protein to acquire new specificities through mutation or to regain function via mutations that differ from the original protein sequence. All organisms have evolutionarily exploited this substrate ambiguity. When exploited in a laboratory under controlled mutagenesis and selection, it enables a protein to “evolve” in desired directions. One of the most effective strategies in directed protein evolution is to gradually accumulate mutations, either sequentially or by recombination, while applying selective pressure. This is typically achieved by the generation of libraries of mutants followed by efficient screening of these libraries for targeted functions and subsequent repetition of the process using improved mutants from the previous screening. Here we review some of the successful strategies in creating protein diversity and the more recent progress in directed protein evolution in a wide range of scientific disciplines and its impacts in chemical, pharmaceutical, and agricultural sciences. PMID:16148303

  12. Spectrophotometric determination of protein concentration.

    PubMed

    Simonian, Michael H

    2004-09-01

    This unit describes spectrophotometric and colorimetric methods for measuring the concentration of a sample protein in solution. Absorbance measured at 280 nm (A(280)) is used to calculate protein concentration by comparison with a standard curve or published absorptivity values for that protein (a(280)). Alternatively, absorbance measured at 205 nm (A(205)) is used to calculate the protein concentration. The A(280) and A(205) methods can be used to quantify total protein in crude lysates and purified or partially purified protein. A spectrofluorometer or a filter fluorometer can be used to measure the intrinsic fluorescence emission of a sample solution; this value is compared with the emissions from standard solutions to determine the sample concentration. The fluorescence emission method is used to quantify purified protein. This simple method is useful for dilute protein samples and can be completed in a short amount of time. There are two colorimetric methods: the Bradford colorimetric method, based upon binding of the dye Coomassie brilliant blue to the protein of interest, and the Lowry method, which measures colorimetric reaction of tyrosyl residues in the protein sample.

  13. Strategies for protein synthetic biology

    PubMed Central

    Grünberg, Raik; Serrano, Luis

    2010-01-01

    Proteins are the most versatile among the various biological building blocks and a mature field of protein engineering has lead to many industrial and biomedical applications. But the strength of proteins—their versatility, dynamics and interactions—also complicates and hinders systems engineering. Therefore, the design of more sophisticated, multi-component protein systems appears to lag behind, in particular, when compared to the engineering of gene regulatory networks. Yet, synthetic biologists have started to tinker with the information flow through natural signaling networks or integrated protein switches. A successful strategy common to most of these experiments is their focus on modular interactions between protein domains or domains and peptide motifs. Such modular interaction swapping has rewired signaling in yeast, put mammalian cell morphology under the control of light, or increased the flux through a synthetic metabolic pathway. Based on this experience, we outline an engineering framework for the connection of reusable protein interaction devices into self-sufficient circuits. Such a framework should help to ‘refacture’ protein complexity into well-defined exchangeable devices for predictive engineering. We review the foundations and initial success stories of protein synthetic biology and discuss the challenges and promises on the way from protein- to protein systems design. PMID:20385577

  14. Proteins aggregation and human diseases

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hu, Chin-Kun

    2015-04-01

    Many human diseases and the death of most supercentenarians are related to protein aggregation. Neurodegenerative diseases include Alzheimer's disease (AD), Huntington's disease (HD), Parkinson's disease (PD), frontotemporallobar degeneration, etc. Such diseases are due to progressive loss of structure or function of neurons caused by protein aggregation. For example, AD is considered to be related to aggregation of Aβ40 (peptide with 40 amino acids) and Aβ42 (peptide with 42 amino acids) and HD is considered to be related to aggregation of polyQ (polyglutamine) peptides. In this paper, we briefly review our recent discovery of key factors for protein aggregation. We used a lattice model to study the aggregation rates of proteins and found that the probability for a protein sequence to appear in the conformation of the aggregated state can be used to determine the temperature at which proteins can aggregate most quickly. We used molecular dynamics and simple models of polymer chains to study relaxation and aggregation of proteins under various conditions and found that when the bending-angle dependent and torsion-angle dependent interactions are zero or very small, then protein chains tend to aggregate at lower temperatures. All atom models were used to identify a key peptide chain for the aggregation of insulin chains and to find that two polyQ chains prefer anti-parallel conformation. It is pointed out that in many cases, protein aggregation does not result from protein mis-folding. A potential drug from Chinese medicine was found for Alzheimer's disease.

  15. Targeted protein degradation by PROTACs.

    PubMed

    Neklesa, Taavi K; Winkler, James D; Crews, Craig M

    2017-02-14

    Targeted protein degradation using the PROTAC technology is emerging as a novel therapeutic method to address diseases driven by the aberrant expression of a disease-causing protein. PROTAC molecules are bifunctional small molecules that simultaneously bind a target protein and an E3-ubiquitin ligase, thus causing ubiquitination and degradation of the target protein by the proteasome. Like small molecules, PROTAC molecules possess good tissue distribution and the ability to target intracellular proteins. Herein, we highlight the advantages of protein degradation using PROTACs, and provide specific examples where degradation offers therapeutic benefit over classical enzyme inhibition. Foremost, PROTACs can degrade proteins regardless of their function. This includes the currently "undruggable" proteome, which comprises approximately 85% of all human proteins. Other beneficial aspects of protein degradation include the ability to target overexpressed and mutated proteins, as well as the potential to demonstrate prolonged pharmacodynamics effect beyond drug exposure. Lastly, due to their catalytic nature and the pre-requisite ubiquitination step, an exquisitely potent molecules with a high degree of degradation selectivity can be designed. Impressive preclinical in vitro and in vivo PROTAC data have been published, and these data have propelled the development of clinically viable PROTACs. With the molecular weight falling in the 700-1000Da range, the delivery and bioavailability of PROTACs remain the largest hurdles on the way to the clinic. Solving these issues and demonstrating proof of concept clinical data will be the focus of many labs over the next few years.

  16. Essential protein identification based on essential protein-protein interaction prediction by Integrated Edge Weights.

    PubMed

    Jiang, Yuexu; Wang, Yan; Pang, Wei; Chen, Liang; Sun, Huiyan; Liang, Yanchun; Blanzieri, Enrico

    2015-07-15

    Essential proteins play a crucial role in cellular survival and development process. Experimentally, essential proteins are identified by gene knockouts or RNA interference, which are expensive and often fatal to the target organisms. Regarding this, an alternative yet important approach to essential protein identification is through computational prediction. Existing computational methods predict essential proteins based on their relative densities in a protein-protein interaction (PPI) network. Degree, betweenness, and other appropriate criteria are often used to measure the relative density. However, no matter what criterion is used, a protein is actually ordered by the attributes of this protein per se. In this research, we presented a novel computational method, Integrated Edge Weights (IEW), to first rank protein-protein interactions by integrating their edge weights, and then identified sub PPI networks consisting of those highly-ranked edges, and finally regarded the nodes in these sub networks as essential proteins. We evaluated IEW on three model organisms: Saccharomyces cerevisiae (S. cerevisiae), Escherichia coli (E. coli), and Caenorhabditis elegans (C. elegans). The experimental results showed that IEW achieved better performance than the state-of-the-art methods in terms of precision-recall and Jackknife measures. We had also demonstrated that IEW is a robust and effective method, which can retrieve biologically significant modules by its highly-ranked protein-protein interactions for S. cerevisiae, E. coli, and C. elegans. We believe that, with sufficient data provided, IEW can be used to any other organisms' essential protein identification. A website about IEW can be accessed from http://digbio.missouri.edu/IEW/index.html.

  17. Protein detection system

    DOEpatents

    Fruetel, Julie A.; Fiechtner, Gregory J.; Kliner, Dahv A. V.; McIlroy, Andrew

    2009-05-05

    The present embodiment describes a miniature, microfluidic, absorption-based sensor to detect proteins at sensitivities comparable to LIF but without the need for tagging. This instrument utilizes fiber-based evanescent-field cavity-ringdown spectroscopy, in combination with faceted prism microchannels. The combination of these techniques will increase the effective absorption path length by a factor of 10.sup.3 to 10.sup.4 (to .about.1-m), thereby providing unprecedented sensitivity using direct absorption. The coupling of high-sensitivity absorption with high-performance microfluidic separation will enable real-time sensing of biological agents in aqueous samples (including aerosol collector fluids) and will provide a general method with spectral fingerprint capability for detecting specific bio-agents.

  18. Protein Crystal Growth

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2003-01-01

    In order to rapidly and efficiently grow crystals, tools were needed to automatically identify and analyze the growing process of protein crystals. To meet this need, Diversified Scientific, Inc. (DSI), with the support of a Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) contract from NASA s Marshall Space Flight Center, developed CrystalScore(trademark), the first automated image acquisition, analysis, and archiving system designed specifically for the macromolecular crystal growing community. It offers automated hardware control, image and data archiving, image processing, a searchable database, and surface plotting of experimental data. CrystalScore is currently being used by numerous pharmaceutical companies and academic and nonprofit research centers. DSI, located in Birmingham, Alabama, was awarded the patent Method for acquiring, storing, and analyzing crystal images on March 4, 2003. Another DSI product made possible by Marshall SBIR funding is VaporPro(trademark), a unique, comprehensive system that allows for the automated control of vapor diffusion for crystallization experiments.

  19. Protein- mediated enamel mineralization

    PubMed Central

    Moradian-Oldak, Janet

    2012-01-01

    Enamel is a hard nanocomposite bioceramic with significant resilience that protects the mammalian tooth from external physical and chemical damages. The remarkable mechanical properties of enamel are associated with its hierarchical structural organization and its thorough connection with underlying dentin. This dynamic mineralizing system offers scientists a wealth of information that allows the study of basic principals of organic matrix-mediated biomineralization and can potentially be utilized in the fields of material science and engineering for development and design of biomimetic materials. This chapter will provide a brief overview of enamel hierarchical structure and properties as well as the process and stages of amelogenesis. Particular emphasis is given to current knowledge of extracellular matrix protein and proteinases, and the structural chemistry of the matrix components and their putative functions. The chapter will conclude by discussing the potential of enamel for regrowth. PMID:22652761

  20. Photo Control of Protein Function Using Photoactive Yellow Protein.

    PubMed

    Reis, Jakeb M; Woolley, G Andrew

    2016-01-01

    Photoswitchable proteins are becoming increasingly common tools for manipulating cellular processes with high spatial and temporal precision. Photoactive yellow protein (PYP) is a small, water-soluble protein that undergoes a blue light induced change in conformation. It can serve as a scaffold for designing new tools to manipulate biological processes, but with respect to other protein scaffolds it presents some technical challenges. Here, we present practical information on how to overcome these, including how to synthesize the PYP chromophore, how to express and purify PYP, and how to screen for desired activity.

  1. Cry protein crystals: a novel platform for protein delivery.

    PubMed

    Nair, Manoj S; Lee, Marianne M; Bonnegarde-Bernard, Astrid; Wallace, Julie A; Dean, Donald H; Ostrowski, Michael C; Burry, Richard W; Boyaka, Prosper N; Chan, Michael K

    2015-01-01

    Protein delivery platforms are important tools in the development of novel protein therapeutics and biotechnologies. We have developed a new class of protein delivery agent based on sub-micrometer-sized Cry3Aa protein crystals that naturally form within the bacterium Bacillus thuringiensis. We demonstrate that fusion of the cry3Aa gene to that of various reporter proteins allows for the facile production of Cry3Aa fusion protein crystals for use in subsequent applications. These Cry3Aa fusion protein crystals are efficiently taken up and retained by macrophages and other cell lines in vitro, and can be delivered to mice in vivo via multiple modes of administration. Oral delivery of Cry3Aa fusion protein crystals to C57BL/6 mice leads to their uptake by MHC class II cells, including macrophages in the Peyer's patches, supporting the notion that the Cry3Aa framework can be used to stabilize cargo protein against degradation for delivery to gastrointestinal lymphoid tissues.

  2. Exploring the repeat protein universe through computational protein design.

    PubMed

    Brunette, T J; Parmeggiani, Fabio; Huang, Po-Ssu; Bhabha, Gira; Ekiert, Damian C; Tsutakawa, Susan E; Hura, Greg L; Tainer, John A; Baker, David

    2015-12-24

    A central question in protein evolution is the extent to which naturally occurring proteins sample the space of folded structures accessible to the polypeptide chain. Repeat proteins composed of multiple tandem copies of a modular structure unit are widespread in nature and have critical roles in molecular recognition, signalling, and other essential biological processes. Naturally occurring repeat proteins have been re-engineered for molecular recognition and modular scaffolding applications. Here we use computational protein design to investigate the space of folded structures that can be generated by tandem repeating a simple helix-loop-helix-loop structural motif. Eighty-three designs with sequences unrelated to known repeat proteins were experimentally characterized. Of these, 53 are monomeric and stable at 95 °C, and 43 have solution X-ray scattering spectra consistent with the design models. Crystal structures of 15 designs spanning a broad range of curvatures are in close agreement with the design models with root mean square deviations ranging from 0.7 to 2.5 Å. Our results show that existing repeat proteins occupy only a small fraction of the possible repeat protein sequence and structure space and that it is possible to design novel repeat proteins with precisely specified geometries, opening up a wide array of new possibilities for biomolecular engineering.

  3. Hydration of proteins: excess partial volumes of water and proteins.

    PubMed

    Sirotkin, Vladimir A; Komissarov, Igor A; Khadiullina, Aigul V

    2012-04-05

    High precision densitometry was applied to study the hydration of proteins. The hydration process was analyzed by the simultaneous monitoring of the excess partial volumes of water and the proteins in the entire range of water content. Five unrelated proteins (lysozyme, chymotrypsinogen A, ovalbumin, human serum albumin, and β-lactoglobulin) were used as models. The obtained data were compared with the excess partial enthalpies of water and the proteins. It was shown that the excess partial quantities are very sensitive to the changes in the state of water and proteins. At the lowest water weight fractions (w(1)), the changes of the excess functions can mainly be attributed to water addition. A transition from the glassy to the flexible state of the proteins is accompanied by significant changes in the excess partial quantities of water and the proteins. This transition appears at a water weight fraction of 0.06 when charged groups of proteins are covered. Excess partial quantities reach their fully hydrated values at w(1) > 0.5 when coverage of both polar and weakly interacting surface elements is complete. At the highest water contents, water addition has no significant effect on the excess quantities. At w(1) > 0.5, changes in the excess functions can solely be attributed to changes in the state of the proteins.

  4. Modular protein switches derived from antibody mimetic proteins

    PubMed Central

    Nicholes, N.; Date, A.; Beaujean, P.; Hauk, P.; Kanwar, M.; Ostermeier, M.

    2016-01-01

    Protein switches have potential applications as biosensors and selective protein therapeutics. Protein switches built by fusion of proteins with the prerequisite input and output functions are currently developed using an ad hoc process. A modular switch platform in which existing switches could be readily adapted to respond to any ligand would be advantageous. We investigated the feasibility of a modular protein switch platform based on fusions of the enzyme TEM-1 β-lactamase (BLA) with two different antibody mimetic proteins: designed ankyrin repeat proteins (DARPins) and monobodies. We created libraries of random insertions of the gene encoding BLA into genes encoding a DARPin or a monobody designed to bind maltose-binding protein (MBP). From these libraries, we used a genetic selection system for β-lactamase activity to identify genes that conferred MBP-dependent ampicillin resistance to Escherichia coli. Some of these selected genes encoded switch proteins whose enzymatic activity increased up to 14-fold in the presence of MBP. We next introduced mutations into the antibody mimetic domain of these switches that were known to cause binding to different ligands. To different degrees, introduction of the mutations resulted in switches with the desired specificity, illustrating the potential modularity of these platforms. PMID:26637825

  5. Modular protein switches derived from antibody mimetic proteins.

    PubMed

    Nicholes, N; Date, A; Beaujean, P; Hauk, P; Kanwar, M; Ostermeier, M

    2016-02-01

    Protein switches have potential applications as biosensors and selective protein therapeutics. Protein switches built by fusion of proteins with the prerequisite input and output functions are currently developed using an ad hoc process. A modular switch platform in which existing switches could be readily adapted to respond to any ligand would be advantageous. We investigated the feasibility of a modular protein switch platform based on fusions of the enzyme TEM-1 β-lactamase (BLA) with two different antibody mimetic proteins: designed ankyrin repeat proteins (DARPins) and monobodies. We created libraries of random insertions of the gene encoding BLA into genes encoding a DARPin or a monobody designed to bind maltose-binding protein (MBP). From these libraries, we used a genetic selection system for β-lactamase activity to identify genes that conferred MBP-dependent ampicillin resistance to Escherichia coli. Some of these selected genes encoded switch proteins whose enzymatic activity increased up to 14-fold in the presence of MBP. We next introduced mutations into the antibody mimetic domain of these switches that were known to cause binding to different ligands. To different degrees, introduction of the mutations resulted in switches with the desired specificity, illustrating the potential modularity of these platforms.

  6. Enhancing recombinant protein quality and yield by protein stability profiling.

    PubMed

    Mezzasalma, Tara M; Kranz, James K; Chan, Winnie; Struble, Geoffrey T; Schalk-Hihi, Céline; Deckman, Ingrid C; Springer, Barry A; Todd, Matthew J

    2007-04-01

    The reliable production of large amounts of stable, high-quality proteins is a major challenge facing pharmaceutical protein biochemists, necessary for fulfilling demands from structural biology, for high-throughput screening, and for assay purposes throughout early discovery. One strategy for bypassing purification challenges in problematic systems is to engineer multiple forms of a particular protein to optimize expression, purification, and stability, often resulting in a nonphysiological sub-domain. An alternative strategy is to alter process conditions to maximize wild-type construct stability, based on a specific protein stability profile (PSP). ThermoFluor, a miniaturized 384-well thermal stability assay, has been implemented as a means of monitoring solution-dependent changes in protein stability, complementing the protein engineering and purification processes. A systematic analysis of pH, buffer or salt identity and concentration, biological metals, surfactants, and common excipients in terms of an effect on protein stability rapidly identifies conditions that might be used (or avoided) during protein production. Two PSPs are presented for the kinase catalytic domains of Akt-3 and cFMS, in which information derived from a ThermoFluor PSP led to an altered purification strategy, improving the yield and quality of the protein using the primary sequences of the catalytic domains.

  7. Protein hijacking: key proteins held captive against their will.

    PubMed

    Traven, Ana; Huang, David C S; Lithgow, Trevor

    2004-02-01

    Proteins travel to their appropriate intracellular homes by means of the targeting signals they carry. It now seems that a short, but important, list of key regulatory proteins are victims of protein hijacking: Bid, Bim, NF-kappaB, SREBP, and perhaps the intracellular portion of MUC1. These provide critical functions within a particular subcellular compartment, but are initially prevented from finding their way to this intracellular home. Only in response to specific physiological signals are these proteins released to find the site at which they act.

  8. Nanosecond Relaxation Dynamics of Hydrated Proteins: Water versus protein contributions

    SciTech Connect

    Khodadadi, S; Curtis, J. E.; Sokolov, Alexei P

    2011-01-01

    We have studied picosecond to nanosecond dynamics of hydrated protein powders using dielectric spectroscopy and molecular dynamics (MD) simulations. Our analysis of hydrogen-atom single particle dynamics from MD simulations focused on main ( main tens of picoseconds) and slow ( slow nanosecond) relaxation processes that were observed in dielectric spectra of similar hydrated protein samples. Traditionally, the interpretation of these processes observed in dielectric spectra has been ascribed to the relaxation behavior of hydration water tightly bounded to a protein and not to protein atoms. Detailed analysis of the MD simulations and comparison to dielectric data indicate that the observed relaxation process in the nanosecond time range of hydrated protein spectra is mainly due to protein atoms. The relaxation processes involve the entire structure of protein including atoms in the protein backbone, side chains, and turns. Both surface and buried protein atoms contribute to the slow processes; however, surface atoms demonstrate slightly faster relaxation dynamics. Analysis of the water molecule residence and dipolar relaxation correlation behavior indicates that the hydration water relaxes at much shorter time scales.

  9. Young proteins experience more variable selection pressures than old proteins

    PubMed Central

    Vishnoi, Anchal; Kryazhimskiy, Sergey; Bazykin, Georgii A.; Hannenhalli, Sridhar; Plotkin, Joshua B.

    2010-01-01

    It is well known that young proteins tend to experience weaker purifying selection and evolve more quickly than old proteins. Here, we show that, in addition, young proteins tend to experience more variable selection pressures over time than old proteins. We demonstrate this pattern in three independent taxonomic groups: yeast, Drosophila, and mammals. The increased variability of selection pressures on young proteins is highly significant even after controlling for the fact that young proteins are typically shorter and experience weaker purifying selection than old proteins. The majority of our results are consistent with the hypothesis that the function of a young gene tends to change over time more readily than that of an old gene. At the same time, our results may be caused in part by young genes that serve constant functions over time, but nevertheless appear to evolve under changing selection pressures due to depletion of adaptive mutations. In either case, our results imply that the evolution of a protein-coding sequence is partly determined by its age and origin, and not only by the phenotypic properties of the encoded protein. We discuss, via specific examples, the consequences of these findings for understanding of the sources of evolutionary novelty. PMID:20921233

  10. Noninvasive imaging of protein-protein interactions in living animals

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Luker, Gary D.; Sharma, Vijay; Pica, Christina M.; Dahlheimer, Julie L.; Li, Wei; Ochesky, Joseph; Ryan, Christine E.; Piwnica-Worms, Helen; Piwnica-Worms, David

    2002-05-01

    Protein-protein interactions control transcription, cell division, and cell proliferation as well as mediate signal transduction, oncogenic transformation, and regulation of cell death. Although a variety of methods have been used to investigate protein interactions in vitro and in cultured cells, none can analyze these interactions in intact, living animals. To enable noninvasive molecular imaging of protein-protein interactions in vivo by positron-emission tomography and fluorescence imaging, we engineered a fusion reporter gene comprising a mutant herpes simplex virus 1 thymidine kinase and green fluorescent protein for readout of a tetracycline-inducible, two-hybrid system in vivo. By using micro-positron-emission tomography, interactions between p53 tumor suppressor and the large T antigen of simian virus 40 were visualized in tumor xenografts of HeLa cells stably transfected with the imaging constructs. Imaging protein-binding partners in vivo will enable functional proteomics in whole animals and provide a tool for screening compounds targeted to specific protein-protein interactions in living animals.

  11. Protein Hormones and Immunity‡

    PubMed Central

    Kelley, Keith W.; Weigent, Douglas A.; Kooijman, Ron

    2007-01-01

    A number of observations and discoveries over the past 20 years support the concept of important physiological interactions between the endocrine and immune systems. The best known pathway for transmission of information from the immune system to the neuroendocrine system is humoral in the form of cytokines, although neural transmission via the afferent vagus is well documented also. In the other direction, efferent signals from the nervous system to the immune system are conveyed by both the neuroendocrine and autonomic nervous systems. Communication is possible because the nervous and immune systems share a common biochemical language involving shared ligands and receptors, including neurotransmitters, neuropeptides, growth factors, neuroendocrine hormones and cytokines. This means that the brain functions as an immune-regulating organ participating in immune responses. A great deal of evidence has accumulated and confirmed that hormones secreted by the neuroendocrine system play an important role in communication and regulation of the cells of the immune system. Among protein hormones, this has been most clearly documented for prolactin (PRL), growth hormone (GH), and insulin-like growth factor-1 (IGF-I), but significant influences on immunity by thyroid stimulating hormone (TSH) have also been demonstrated. Here we review evidence obtained during the past 20 years to clearly demonstrate that neuroendocrine protein hormones influence immunity and that immune processes affect the neuroendocrine system. New findings highlight a previously undiscovered route of communication between the immune and endocrine systems that is now known to occur at the cellular level. This communication system is activated when inflammatory processes induced by proinflammatory cytokines antagonize the function of a variety of hormones, which then causes endocrine resistance in both the periphery and brain. Homeostasis during inflammation is achieved by a balance between cytokines and

  12. Synthetic Peptides as Protein Mimics

    PubMed Central

    Groß, Andrea; Hashimoto, Chie; Sticht, Heinrich; Eichler, Jutta

    2016-01-01

    The design and generation of molecules capable of mimicking the binding and/or functional sites of proteins represents a promising strategy for the exploration and modulation of protein function through controlled interference with the underlying molecular interactions. Synthetic peptides have proven an excellent type of molecule for the mimicry of protein sites because such peptides can be generated as exact copies of protein fragments, as well as in diverse chemical modifications, which includes the incorporation of a large range of non-proteinogenic amino acids as well as the modification of the peptide backbone. Apart from extending the chemical and structural diversity presented by peptides, such modifications also increase the proteolytic stability of the molecules, enhancing their utility for biological applications. This article reviews recent advances by this and other laboratories in the use of synthetic protein mimics to modulate protein function, as well as to provide building blocks for synthetic biology. PMID:26835447

  13. Biofoams and natural protein surfactants

    PubMed Central

    Cooper, Alan; Kennedy, Malcolm W.

    2010-01-01

    Naturally occurring foam constituent and surfactant proteins with intriguing structures and functions are now being identified from a variety of biological sources. The ranaspumins from tropical frog foam nests comprise a range of proteins with a mixture of surfactant, carbohydrate binding and antimicrobial activities that together provide a stable, biocompatible, protective foam environment for developing eggs and embryos. Ranasmurfin, a blue protein from a different species of frog, displays a novel structure with a unique chromophoric crosslink. Latherin, primarily from horse sweat, but with similarities to salivary, oral and upper respiratory tract proteins, illustrates several potential roles for surfactant proteins in mammalian systems. These proteins, together with the previously discovered hydrophobins of fungi, throw new light on biomolecular processes at air–water and other interfaces. This review provides a perspective on these recent findings, focussing on structure and biophysical properties. PMID:20615601

  14. Phase retrieval in protein crystallography.

    PubMed

    Liu, Zhong Chuan; Xu, Rui; Dong, Yu Hui

    2012-03-01

    Solution of the phase problem is central to crystallographic structure determination. An oversampling method is proposed, based on the hybrid input-output algorithm (HIO) [Fienup (1982). Appl. Opt. 21, 2758-2769], to retrieve the phases of reflections in crystallography. This method can extend low-resolution structures to higher resolution for structure determination of proteins without additional sample preparation. The method requires an envelope of the protein which divides a unit cell into the density region where the proteins are located and the non-density region occupied by solvents. After a few hundred to a few thousand iterations, the correct phases and density maps are recovered. The method has been used successfully in several cases to retrieve the phases from the experimental X-ray diffraction data and the envelopes of proteins constructed from structure files downloaded from the Protein Data Bank. It is hoped that this method will greatly facilitate the ab initio structure determination of proteins.

  15. Posttranslational protein modification in Archaea.

    PubMed

    Eichler, Jerry; Adams, Michael W W

    2005-09-01

    One of the first hurdles to be negotiated in the postgenomic era involves the description of the entire protein content of the cell, the proteome. Such efforts are presently complicated by the various posttranslational modifications that proteins can experience, including glycosylation, lipid attachment, phosphorylation, methylation, disulfide bond formation, and proteolytic cleavage. Whereas these and other posttranslational protein modifications have been well characterized in Eucarya and Bacteria, posttranslational modification in Archaea has received far less attention. Although archaeal proteins can undergo posttranslational modifications reminiscent of what their eucaryal and bacterial counterparts experience, examination of archaeal posttranslational modification often reveals aspects not previously observed in the other two domains of life. In some cases, posttranslational modification allows a protein to survive the extreme conditions often encountered by Archaea. The various posttranslational modifications experienced by archaeal proteins, the molecular steps leading to these modifications, and the role played by posttranslational modification in Archaea form the focus of this review.

  16. Principles of protein labeling techniques.

    PubMed

    Obermaier, Christian; Griebel, Anja; Westermeier, Reiner

    2015-01-01

    Protein labeling methods prior to separation and analysis have become indispensable approaches for proteomic profiling. Basically, three different types of tags are employed: stable isotopes, mass tags, and fluorophores. While proteins labeled with stable isotopes and mass tags are measured and differentiated by mass spectrometry, fluorescent labels are detected with fluorescence imagers. The major purposes for protein labeling are monitoring of biological processes, reliable quantification of compounds and specific detection of protein modifications and isoforms in multiplexed samples, enhancement of detection sensitivity, and simplification of detection workflows. Proteins can be labeled during cell growth by incorporation of amino acids containing different isotopes, or in biological fluids, cells or tissue samples by attaching specific groups to the ε-amino group of lysine, the N-terminus, or the cysteine residues. The principles and the modifications of the different labeling approaches on the protein level are described; benefits and shortcomings of the methods are discussed.

  17. Advantages of proteins being disordered

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Zhirong; Huang, Yongqi

    2014-01-01

    The past decade has witnessed great advances in our understanding of protein structure-function relationships in terms of the ubiquitous existence of intrinsically disordered proteins (IDPs) and intrinsically disordered regions (IDRs). The structural disorder of IDPs/IDRs enables them to play essential functions that are complementary to those of ordered proteins. In addition, IDPs/IDRs are persistent in evolution. Therefore, they are expected to possess some advantages over ordered proteins. In this review, we summarize and survey nine possible advantages of IDPs/IDRs: economizing genome/protein resources, overcoming steric restrictions in binding, achieving high specificity with low affinity, increasing binding rate, facilitating posttranslational modifications, enabling flexible linkers, preventing aggregation, providing resistance to non-native conditions, and allowing compatibility with more available sequences. Some potential advantages of IDPs/IDRs are not well understood and require both experimental and theoretical approaches to decipher. The connection with protein design is also briefly discussed. PMID:24532081

  18. Recombinant protein polymers in biomaterials.

    PubMed

    Kim, Wookhyun

    2013-01-01

    Naturally occurring protein-based materials have been found that function as critical components in biomechanical response, fibers and adhesives. A relatively small but growing number of recombinant protein-based materials that mimic the desired features of their natural sources, such as collagens, elastins and silks, are considered as an alternative to conventional synthetic polymers. Advances in genetic engineering have facilitated the synthesis of repetitive protein polymers with precise control of molecular weights which are designed by using synthetic genes encoding tandem repeats of oligopeptide originating from a modular domain of natural proteins. Many repeat sequences as protein polymer building blocks adopt a well-defined secondary structure and undergo self-assembly to result in physically cross-linked networks or with chemical cross-linking so that further form three-dimensional architectures similar to natural counterparts. In this review, recombinant protein polymers currently developed will be presented that have emerged as promising class of next generation biomaterials.

  19. Monitoring protein stability in vivo.

    PubMed

    Ignatova, Zoya

    2005-08-24

    Reduced protein stability in vivo is a prerequisite to aggregation. While this is merely a nuisance factor in recombinant protein production, it holds a serious impact for man. This review focuses on specific approaches to selectively determine the solubility and/or stability of a target protein within the complex cellular environment using different detection techniques. Noninvasive techniques mapping folding/misfolding events on a fast time scale can be used to unravel the complexity and dynamics of the protein aggregation process and factors altering protein solubility in vivo. The development of approaches to screen for folding and solubility in vivo should facilitate the identification of potential components that improve protein solubility and/or modulate misfolding and aggregation and may provide a therapeutic benefit.

  20. Posttranslational Protein Modification in Archaea

    PubMed Central

    Eichler, Jerry; Adams, Michael W. W.

    2005-01-01

    One of the first hurdles to be negotiated in the postgenomic era involves the description of the entire protein content of the cell, the proteome. Such efforts are presently complicated by the various posttranslational modifications that proteins can experience, including glycosylation, lipid attachment, phosphorylation, methylation, disulfide bond formation, and proteolytic cleavage. Whereas these and other posttranslational protein modifications have been well characterized in Eucarya and Bacteria, posttranslational modification in Archaea has received far less attention. Although archaeal proteins can undergo posttranslational modifications reminiscent of what their eucaryal and bacterial counterparts experience, examination of archaeal posttranslational modification often reveals aspects not previously observed in the other two domains of life. In some cases, posttranslational modification allows a protein to survive the extreme conditions often encountered by Archaea. The various posttranslational modifications experienced by archaeal proteins, the molecular steps leading to these modifications, and the role played by posttranslational modification in Archaea form the focus of this review. PMID:16148304

  1. Theoretical studies of protein-protein and protein-DNA binding rates

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Alsallaq, Ramzi A.

    Proteins are folded chains of amino acids. Some of the amino acids (e.g. Lys, Arg, His, Asp, and Glu) carry charges under physiological conditions. Proteins almost always function through binding to other proteins or ligands, for example barnase is a ribonuclease protein, found in the bacterium Bacillus amyloliquefaceus. Barnase degrades RNA by hydrolysis. For the bacterium to inhibit the potentially lethal action of Barnase within its own cell it co-produces another protein called barstar which binds quickly, and tightly, to barnase. The biological function of this binding is to block the active site of barnase. The speeds (rates) at which proteins associate are vital to many biological processes. They span a wide range (from less than 103 to 108 M-1s-1 ). Rates greater than ˜ 106 M -1s-1 are typically found to be manifestations of enhancements by long-range electrostatic interactions between the associating proteins. A different paradigm appears in the case of protein binding to DNA. The rate in this case is enhanced through attractive surface potential that effectively reduces the dimensionality of the available search space for the diffusing protein. This thesis presents computational and theoretical models on the rate of association of ligands/proteins to other proteins or DNA. For protein-protein association we present a general strategy for computing protein-protein rates of association. The main achievements of this strategy is the ability to obtain a stringent reaction criteria based on the landscape of short-range interactions between the associating proteins, and the ability to compute the effect of the electrostatic interactions on the rates of association accurately using the best known solvers for Poisson-Boltzmann equation presently available. For protein-DNA association we present a mathematical model for proteins targeting specific sites on a circular DNA topology. The main achievements are the realization that a linear DNA with reflecting ends

  2. Ghrelin Receptor Regulates Appetite and Satiety during Aging in Mice by Regulating Meal Frequency and Portion Size but Not Total Food Intake1234

    PubMed Central

    Lin, Ligen; Nuotio-Antar, Alli M.; Ma, Xiaojun; Liu, Feng; Fiorotto, Marta L.; Sun, Yuxiang

    2014-01-01

    Aging is often associated with overweight and obesity. There exists a long-standing debate about whether meal pattern also contributes to the development of obesity. The orexigenic hormone ghrelin regulates appetite and satiety by activating its receptor, growth hormone secretagogue receptor (GHS-R). In mice, circulating ghrelin concentrations and brain GHS-R expression were shown to increase with aging. To assess whether GHS-R regulates feeding pattern during aging, we studied meal patterns for the following cohorts of male mice fed a normal unpurified diet: 1) 3–4 mo, young wild-type (WT) mice; 2) 3–4 mo, young Ghsr-null (Ghsr−/−) mice; 3) 12–14 mo, middle-aged WT (WT-M) mice; 4) 12–14 mo, middle-aged Ghsr−/− (Ghsr−/−-M) mice; 5) 24–26 mo, old WT (WT-O) mice; and 6) 24–26 mo, old Ghsr−/− (Ghsr−/−-O) mice. Although the total daily food intake of Ghsr−/− mice was similar to that of WT controls, Ghsr−/−-M and Ghsr−/−-O mice had 9% (P = 0.07) and 16% (P < 0.05) less body weight compared with WT-M and WT-O mice, respectively, primarily due to reduced fat mass (P < 0.05, WT-M vs. Ghsr−/−-M and WT-O vs. Ghsr−/−-O). Intriguingly, Ghsr−/−-M mice ate larger meals (on average, Ghsr−/−-M mice ate 0.117 g/meal and WT-M mice ate 0.080 g/meal; P < 0.01) and took a longer time to eat (Ghsr−/−-M, 196.0 s and WT-M, 128.9 s; P < 0.01), but ate less frequently (Ghsr−/−-M, 31.0 times/d and WT-M, 42.3 times/d; P < 0.05) than WT-M controls. In addition, we found that expression of hypothalamic orexigenic peptides, neuropeptide Y (NPY) and agouti-related peptide (AgRP), was relatively lower in aged WT mice (P = 0.09 for NPY and P = 0.06 for AgRP), but anorexic peptide pro-opiomelanocortin (POMC) expression remained unchanged between the WT age groups. Interestingly, old Ghsr−/− mice had greater hypothalamic NPY expression (102% higher; P < 0.05) and AgRP expression (P = 0.07) but significantly lower POMC expression

  3. Simultaneous Site-Specific Dual Protein Labeling Using Protein Prenyltransferases.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Yi; Blanden, Melanie J; Sudheer, Ch; Gangopadhyay, Soumyashree A; Rashidian, Mohammad; Hougland, James L; Distefano, Mark D

    2015-12-16

    Site-specific protein labeling is an important technique in protein chemistry and is used for diverse applications ranging from creating protein conjugates to protein immobilization. Enzymatic reactions, including protein prenylation, have been widely exploited as methods to accomplish site-specific labeling. Enzymatic prenylation is catalyzed by prenyltransferases, including protein farnesyltransferase (PFTase) and geranylgeranyltransferase type I (GGTase-I), both of which recognize C-terminal CaaX motifs with different specificities and transfer prenyl groups from isoprenoid diphosphates to their respective target proteins. A number of isoprenoid analogues containing bioorthogonal functional groups have been used to label proteins of interest via PFTase-catalyzed reaction. In this study, we sought to expand the scope of prenyltransferase-mediated protein labeling by exploring the utility of rat GGTase-I (rGGTase-I). First, the isoprenoid specificity of rGGTase-I was evaluated by screening eight different analogues and it was found that those with bulky moieties and longer backbone length were recognized by rGGTase-I more efficiently. Taking advantage of the different substrate specificities of rat PFTase (rPFTase) and rGGTase-I, we then developed a simultaneous dual labeling method to selectively label two different proteins by using isoprenoid analogue and CaaX substrate pairs that were specific to only one of the prenyltransferases. Using two model proteins, green fluorescent protein with a C-terminal CVLL sequence (GFP-CVLL) and red fluorescent protein with a C-terminal CVIA sequence (RFP-CVIA), we demonstrated that when incubated together with both prenyltransferases and the selected isoprenoid analogues, GFP-CVLL was specifically modified with a ketone-functionalized analogue by rGGTase-I and RFP-CVIA was selectively labeled with an alkyne-containing analogue by rPFTase. By switching the ketone-containing analogue to an azide-containing analogue, it was

  4. Protein Crystallization Apparatus for Microgravity

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2001-01-01

    The Protein Crystallization for Microgravity (DCAM) was developed at NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center. A droplet of solution with protein molecules dissolved in it is isolated in the center of a small well. In orbit, an elastomer seal is lifted so the solution can evaporate and be absorbed by a wick material. This raises the concentration of the solution, thus prompting protein molecules in the solution to form crystals. The principal investigator is Dr. Dan Carter of New Century Pharmaceuticals in Huntsville, AL.

  5. Protein crystallization apparatus for microgravity

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2001-01-01

    The Protein Crystallization for Microgravity (DCAM) was developed at NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center. A droplet of solution with protein molecules dissolved in it is isolated in the center of a small well. In orbit, an elastomer seal is lifted so the solution can evaporate and be absorbed by a wick material. This raises the concentration of the solution, thus prompting protein molecules in the solution to form crystals. The principal investigator is Dr. Dan Carter of New Century Pharmaceuticals in Huntsville, AL.

  6. Protein Multifunctionality: Principles and Mechanisms

    PubMed Central

    Zaretsky, Joseph Z.; Wreschner, Daniel H.

    2008-01-01

    In the review, the nature of protein multifunctionality is analyzed. In the first part of the review the principles of structural/functional organization of protein are discussed. In the second part, the main mechanisms involved in development of multiple functions on a single gene product(s) are analyzed. The last part represents a number of examples showing that multifunctionality is a basic feature of biologically active proteins. PMID:21566747

  7. Scientist prepare Lysozyme Protein Crystal

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1996-01-01

    Dan Carter and Charles Sisk center a Lysozyme Protein crystal grown aboard the USML-2 shuttle mission. Protein isolated from hen egg-white and functions as a bacteriostatic enzyme by degrading bacterial cell walls. First enzyme ever characterized by protein crystallography. It is used as an excellent model system for better understanding parameters involved in microgravity crystal growth experiments. The goal is to compare kinetic data from microgravity experiments with data from laboratory experiments to study the equilibrium.

  8. Intracellular targeting with engineered proteins

    PubMed Central

    Miersch, Shane; Sidhu, Sachdev S.

    2016-01-01

    If the isolation, production, and clinical use of insulin marked the inception of the age of biologics as therapeutics, the convergence of molecular biology and combinatorial engineering techniques marked its coming of age. The first wave of recombinant protein-based drugs in the 1980s demonstrated emphatically that proteins could be engineered, formulated, and employed for clinical advantage. Yet despite the successes of protein-based drugs such as antibodies, enzymes, and cytokines, the druggable target space for biologics is currently restricted to targets outside the cell. Insofar as estimates place the number of proteins either secreted or with extracellular domains in the range of 8000 to 9000, this represents only one-third of the proteome and circumscribes the pathways that can be targeted for therapeutic intervention. Clearly, a major objective for this field to reach maturity is to access, interrogate, and modulate the majority of proteins found inside the cell. However, owing to the large size, complex architecture, and general cellular impermeability of existing protein-based drugs, this poses a daunting challenge. In recent years, though, advances on the two related fronts of protein engineering and drug delivery are beginning to bring this goal within reach. First, prompted by the restrictions that limit the applicability of antibodies, intense efforts have been applied to identifying and engineering smaller alternative protein scaffolds for the modulation of intracellular targets. In parallel, innovative solutions for delivering proteins to the intracellular space while maintaining their stability and functional activity have begun to yield successes. This review provides an overview of bioactive intrabodies and alternative protein scaffolds amenable to engineering for intracellular targeting and also outlines advances in protein engineering and formulation for delivery of functional proteins to the interior of the cell to achieve therapeutic action

  9. Novel protein-protein interaction family proteins involved in chloroplast movement response.

    PubMed

    Kodama, Yutaka; Suetsugu, Noriyuki; Wada, Masamitsu

    2011-04-01

    To optimize photosynthetic activity, chloroplasts change their intracellular location in response to ambient light conditions; chloroplasts move toward low intensity light to maximize light capture, and away from high intensity light to avoid photodamage. Although several proteins have been reported to be involved in the chloroplast photorelocation movement response, any physical interaction among them was not found so far. We recently found a physical interaction between two plant-specific coiled-coil proteins, WEB1 (Weak Chloroplast Movement under Blue Light 1) and PMI2 (Plastid Movement Impaired 2), that were identified to regulate chloroplast movement velocity. Since the both coiled-coil regions of WEB1 and PMI2 were classified into an uncharacterized protein family having DUF827 (DUF: Domain of Unknown Function) domain, it was the first report that DUF827 proteins could mediate protein-protein interaction. In this mini-review article, we discuss regarding molecular function of WEB1 and PMI2, and also define a novel protein family composed of WEB1, PMI2 and WEB1/PMI2-like proteins for protein-protein interaction in land plants.

  10. Developing algorithms for predicting protein-protein interactions of homology modeled proteins.

    SciTech Connect

    Martin, Shawn Bryan; Sale, Kenneth L.; Faulon, Jean-Loup Michel; Roe, Diana C.

    2006-01-01

    The goal of this project was to examine the protein-protein docking problem, especially as it relates to homology-based structures, identify the key bottlenecks in current software tools, and evaluate and prototype new algorithms that may be developed to improve these bottlenecks. This report describes the current challenges in the protein-protein docking problem: correctly predicting the binding site for the protein-protein interaction and correctly placing the sidechains. Two different and complementary approaches are taken that can help with the protein-protein docking problem. The first approach is to predict interaction sites prior to docking, and uses bioinformatics studies of protein-protein interactions to predict theses interaction site. The second approach is to improve validation of predicted complexes after docking, and uses an improved scoring function for evaluating proposed docked poses, incorporating a solvation term. This scoring function demonstrates significant improvement over current state-of-the art functions. Initial studies on both these approaches are promising, and argue for full development of these algorithms.

  11. Protein function prediction using neighbor relativity in protein-protein interaction network.

    PubMed

    Moosavi, Sobhan; Rahgozar, Masoud; Rahimi, Amir

    2013-04-01

    There is a large gap between the number of discovered proteins and the number of functionally annotated ones. Due to the high cost of determining protein function by wet-lab research, function prediction has become a major task for computational biology and bioinformatics. Some researches utilize the proteins interaction information to predict function for un-annotated proteins. In this paper, we propose a novel approach called "Neighbor Relativity Coefficient" (NRC) based on interaction network topology which estimates the functional similarity between two proteins. NRC is calculated for each pair of proteins based on their graph-based features including distance, common neighbors and the number of paths between them. In order to ascribe function to an un-annotated protein, NRC estimates a weight for each neighbor to transfer its annotation to the unknown protein. Finally, the unknown protein will be annotated by the top score transferred functions. We also investigate the effect of using different coefficients for various types of functions. The proposed method has been evaluated on Saccharomyces cerevisiae and Homo sapiens interaction networks. The performance analysis demonstrates that NRC yields better results in comparison with previous protein function prediction approaches that utilize interaction network.

  12. Lipid demixing and protein-protein interactions in the adsorption of charged proteins on mixed membranes.

    PubMed Central

    May, S; Harries, D; Ben-Shaul, A

    2000-01-01

    The adsorption free energy of charged proteins on mixed membranes, containing varying amounts of (oppositely) charged lipids, is calculated based on a mean-field free energy expression that accounts explicitly for the ability of the lipids to demix locally, and for lateral interactions between the adsorbed proteins. Minimization of this free energy functional yields the familiar nonlinear Poisson-Boltzmann equation and the boundary condition at the membrane surface that allows for lipid charge rearrangement. These two self-consistent equations are solved simultaneously. The proteins are modeled as uniformly charged spheres and the (bare) membrane as an ideal two-dimensional binary mixture of charged and neutral lipids. Substantial variations in the lipid charge density profiles are found when highly charged proteins adsorb on weakly charged membranes; the lipids, at a certain demixing entropy penalty, adjust their concentration in the vicinity of the adsorbed protein to achieve optimal charge matching. Lateral repulsive interactions between the adsorbed proteins affect the lipid modulation profile and, at high densities, result in substantial lowering of the binding energy. Adsorption isotherms demonstrating the importance of lipid mobility and protein-protein interactions are calculated using an adsorption equation with a coverage-dependent binding constant. Typically, at bulk-surface equilibrium (i.e., when the membrane surface is "saturated" by adsorbed proteins), the membrane charges are "overcompensated" by the protein charges, because only about half of the protein charges (those on the hemispheres facing the membrane) are involved in charge neutralization. Finally, it is argued that the formation of lipid-protein domains may be enhanced by electrostatic adsorption of proteins, but its origin (e.g., elastic deformations associated with lipid demixing) is not purely electrostatic. PMID:11023883

  13. Design of membrane proteins: toward functional systems.

    PubMed

    Ghirlanda, Giovanna

    2009-12-01

    Over the years, membrane-soluble peptides have provided a convenient model system to investigate the folding and assembly of integral membrane proteins. Recent advances in experimental and computational methods are now being translated into the design of functional membrane proteins. Applications include artificial modulators of membrane protein function, inhibitors of protein-protein interactions, and redox membrane proteins.

  14. Predicting conformational switches in proteins.

    PubMed Central

    Young, M.; Kirshenbaum, K.; Dill, K. A.; Highsmith, S.

    1999-01-01

    We describe a new computational technique to predict conformationally switching elements in proteins from their amino acid sequences. The method, called ASP (Ambivalent Structure Predictor), analyzes results from a secondary structure prediction algorithm to identify regions of conformational ambivalence. ASP identifies ambivalent regions in 16 test protein sequences for which function involves substantial backbone rearrangements. In the test set, all sites previously described as conformational switches are correctly predicted to be structurally ambivalent regions. No such regions are predicted in three negative control protein sequences. ASP may be useful as a guide for experimental studies on protein function and motion in the absence of detailed three-dimensional structural data. PMID:10493576

  15. Is there a protein ligase?

    PubMed

    Erhan, S

    1976-01-01

    Results obtained from experiments dealing with mammalian, bacterial, phage and mitochondrial protein biosynthesis as well as certain enzymatically performed amino acid replacement studies on Kunitz trypsin inhibitor strongly suggest that protein ligation may be occuring in vivo. Amino acid substitution experiments prove the reversibility of endopeptidase reactions, and protein ligation is the reverse of endopeptidase reaction. These experiments are discussed in detail and the suggestion is made that ligation may also be useful in the repair of certain essential proteins which may become damaged.

  16. Protein Solubilization: A Novel Approach

    PubMed Central

    Johnson, David H.; Wilson, W. William; DeLucas, Lawrence J.

    2014-01-01

    Formulation development presents significant challenges with respect to protein therapeutics. One component of these challenges is to attain high protein solubility (> 50 mg/ml for immunoglobulins) with minimal aggregation. Protein-protein interactions contribute to aggregation and the integral sum of these interactions can be quantified by a thermodynamic parameter known as the osmotic second virial coefficient (B-value). The method presented here utilizes high-throughput measurement of B-values to identify the influence of additives on protein-protein interactions. The experiment design uses three tiers of screens to arrive at final solution conditions that improve protein solubility. The first screen identifies individual additives that reduce protein interactions. A second set of B-values are then measured for different combinations of these additives via an incomplete factorial screen. Results from the incomplete factorial screen are used to train an artificial neural network (ANN). The “trained” ANN enables predictions of B-values for more than 4,000 formulations that include additive combinations not previously experimentally measured. Validation steps are incorporated throughout the screening process to ensure that 1) the protein’s thermal and aggregation stability characteristics are not reduced and 2) the artificial neural network predictive model is accurate. The ability of this approach to reduce aggregation and increase solubility is demonstrated using an IgG protein supplied by Minerva Biotechnologies, Inc. PMID:25270058

  17. Nanotube-assisted protein deactivation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Joshi, Amit; Punyani, Supriya; Bale, Shyam Sundhar; Yang, Hoichang; Borca-Tasciuc, Theodorian; Kane, Ravi S.

    2008-01-01

    Conjugating proteins onto carbon nanotubes has numerous applications in biosensing, imaging and cellular delivery. However, remotely controlling the activity of proteins in these conjugates has never been demonstrated. Here we show that upon near-infrared irradiation, carbon nanotubes mediate the selective deactivation of proteins in situ by photochemical effects. We designed nanotube-peptide conjugates to selectively destroy the anthrax toxin, and also optically transparent coatings that can self-clean following either visible or near-infrared irradiation. Nanotube-assisted protein deactivation may be broadly applicable to the selective destruction of pathogens and cells, and will have applications ranging from antifouling coatings to functional proteomics.

  18. Computational protein design: a review

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Coluzza, Ivan

    2017-04-01

    Proteins are one of the most versatile modular assembling systems in nature. Experimentally, more than 110 000 protein structures have been identified and more are deposited every day in the Protein Data Bank. Such an enormous structural variety is to a first approximation controlled by the sequence of amino acids along the peptide chain of each protein. Understanding how the structural and functional properties of the target can be encoded in this sequence is the main objective of protein design. Unfortunately, rational protein design remains one of the major challenges across the disciplines of biology, physics and chemistry. The implications of solving this problem are enormous and branch into materials science, drug design, evolution and even cryptography. For instance, in the field of drug design an effective computational method to design protein-based ligands for biological targets such as viruses, bacteria or tumour cells, could give a significant boost to the development of new therapies with reduced side effects. In materials science, self-assembly is a highly desired property and soon artificial proteins could represent a new class of designable self-assembling materials. The scope of this review is to describe the state of the art in computational protein design methods and give the reader an outline of what developments could be expected in the near future.

  19. Nucleation precursors in protein crystallization

    PubMed Central

    Vekilov, Peter G.; Vorontsova, Maria A.

    2014-01-01

    Protein crystal nucleation is a central problem in biological crystallography and other areas of science, technology and medicine. Recent studies have demonstrated that protein crystal nuclei form within crucial precursors. Here, methods of detection and characterization of the precursors are reviewed: dynamic light scattering, atomic force microscopy and Brownian microscopy. Data for several proteins provided by these methods have demonstrated that the nucleation precursors are clusters consisting of protein-dense liquid, which are metastable with respect to the host protein solution. The clusters are several hundred nanometres in size, the cluster population occupies from 10−7 to 10−3 of the solution volume, and their properties in solutions supersaturated with respect to crystals are similar to those in homogeneous, i.e. undersaturated, solutions. The clusters exist owing to the conformation flexibility of the protein molecules, leading to exposure of hydrophobic surfaces and enhanced intermolecular binding. These results indicate that protein conformational flexibility might be the mechanism behind the metastable mesoscopic clusters and crystal nucleation. Investigations of the cluster properties are still in their infancy. Results on direct imaging of cluster behaviors and characterization of cluster mechanisms with a variety of proteins will soon lead to major breakthroughs in protein biophysics. PMID:24598910

  20. [Protein toxins of Staphylococcus aureus].

    PubMed

    Shamsutdinov, A F; Tiurin, Iu A

    2014-01-01

    Main scientific-research studies regarding protein bacterial toxins of the most widespread bacteria that belong to Staphylococcus spp. genus and in particular the most pathogenic species for humans--Staphylococcus aureus, are analyzed. Structural and biological properties of protein toxins that have received the name of staphylococcus pyrogenic toxins (PTSAg) are presented. Data regarding genetic regulation of secretion and synthesis of these toxins and 3 main regulatory genetic systems (agr--accessory gene regulator, xpr--extracellular protein regulator, sar--staphylococcal accessory regulator) that coordinate synthesis of the most important protein toxins and enzymes for virulence of S. aureus, are presented.