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Sample records for native protein structure

  1. Refinement and Selection of Near-native Protein Structures

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Jiong; Zhang, Jingfen; Shang, Yi; Xu, Dong; Kosztin, Ioan

    2013-03-01

    In recent years in silico protein structure prediction reached a level where a variety of servers can generate large pools of near-native structures. However, the identification and further refinement of the best structures from the pool of decoys continue to be problematic. To address these issues, we have developed a selective refinement protocol (based on the Rosetta software package), and a molecular dynamics (MD) simulation based ranking method (MDR). The refinement of the selected structures is done by employing Rosetta's relax mode, subject to certain constraints. The selection of the final best models is done with MDR by testing their relative stability against gradual heating during all atom MD simulations. We have implemented the selective refinement protocol and the MDR method in our fully automated server Mufold-MD. Assessments of the performance of the Mufold-MD server in the CASP10 competition and other tests will be presented. This work was supported by grants from NIH. Computer time was provided by the University of Missouri Bioinformatics Consortium.

  2. Electronic polarization is important in stabilizing the native structures of proteins.

    PubMed

    Ji, Chang G; Zhang, John Z H

    2009-12-10

    Quantum mechanical computations of proteins based on the molecular fragment approach have been carried out, and polarized protein-specific charges have been derived to provide accurate electrostatic interactions for a benchmark set of proteins. Our study shows that, under the polarized protein-specific force field, the native structure indeed corresponds to the lowest-energy conformation for these proteins. In contrast, when a standard mean-field force field such as AMBER is used, the energies of many decoy structures of proteins could be lower than those of the native structures. Furthermore, MD simulations were carried out and verified that the native structures of these proteins not only are statically more stable but are also dynamically more stable under the polarized protein-specific force field. The present results, together with several recent studies, provide strong evidence that protein polarization is critical to stabilizing the native structures of proteins.

  3. Structural Characterization of Native Proteins and Protein Complexes by Electron Ionization Dissociation-Mass Spectrometry.

    PubMed

    Li, Huilin; Sheng, Yuewei; McGee, William; Cammarata, Michael; Holden, Dustin; Loo, Joseph A

    2017-03-07

    Mass spectrometry (MS) has played an increasingly important role in the identification and structural and functional characterization of proteins. In particular, the use of tandem mass spectrometry has afforded one of the most versatile methods to acquire structural information for proteins and protein complexes. The unique nature of electron capture dissociation (ECD) for cleaving protein backbone bonds while preserving noncovalent interactions has made it especially suitable for the study of native protein structures. However, the intra- and intermolecular interactions stabilized by hydrogen bonds and salt bridges can hinder the separation of fragments even with preactivation, which has become particularly problematic for the study of large macromolecular proteins and protein complexes. Here, we describe the capabilities of another activation method, 30 eV electron ionization dissociation (EID), for the top-down MS characterization of native protein-ligand and protein-protein complexes. Rich structural information that cannot be delivered by ECD can be generated by EID. EID allowed for the comparison of the gas-phase and the solution-phase structural stability and unfolding process of human carbonic anhydrase I (HCA-I). In addition, the EID fragmentation patterns reflect the structural similarities and differences among apo-, Zn-, and Cu,Zn-superoxide dismutase (SOD1) dimers. In particular, the structural changes due to Cu-binding and a point mutation (G41D) were revealed by EID-MS. The performance of EID was also compared to that of 193 nm ultraviolet photodissociation (UVPD), which allowed us to explore their qualitative similarities and differences as potential valuable tools for the MS study of native proteins and protein complexes.

  4. A new scoring function for protein-protein docking that identifies native structures with unprecedented accuracy.

    PubMed

    Moreira, Irina S; Martins, João M; Coimbra, João T S; Ramos, Maria J; Fernandes, Pedro A

    2015-01-28

    Protein-protein (P-P) 3D structures are fundamental to structural biology and drug discovery. However, most of them have never been determined. Many docking algorithms were developed for that purpose, but they have a very limited accuracy in generating native-like structures and identifying the most correct one, in particular when a single answer is asked for. With such a low success rate it is difficult to point out one docked structure as being native-like. Here we present a new, high accuracy, scoring method to identify the 3D structure of P-P complexes among a set of trial poses. It incorporates alanine scanning mutagenesis experimental data that need to be obtained a priori. The scoring scheme works by matching the computational and the experimental alanine scanning mutagenesis results. The size of the trial P-P interface area is also taken into account. We show that the method ranks the trial structures and identifies the native-like structures with unprecedented accuracy (∼94%), providing the correct P-P 3D structures that biochemists and molecular biologists need to pursue their studies. With such a success rate, the bottleneck of protein-protein docking moves from the scoring to searching algorithms.

  5. Constructing a folding model for protein S6 guided by native fluctuations deduced from NMR structures

    SciTech Connect

    Lammert, Heiko; Noel, Jeffrey K.; Haglund, Ellinor; Onuchic, José N.; Schug, Alexander

    2015-12-28

    The diversity in a set of protein nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) structures provides an estimate of native state fluctuations that can be used to refine and enrich structure-based protein models (SBMs). Dynamics are an essential part of a protein’s functional native state. The dynamics in the native state are controlled by the same funneled energy landscape that guides the entire folding process. SBMs apply the principle of minimal frustration, drawn from energy landscape theory, to construct a funneled folding landscape for a given protein using only information from the native structure. On an energy landscape smoothed by evolution towards minimal frustration, geometrical constraints, imposed by the native structure, control the folding mechanism and shape the native dynamics revealed by the model. Native-state fluctuations can alternatively be estimated directly from the diversity in the set of NMR structures for a protein. Based on this information, we identify a highly flexible loop in the ribosomal protein S6 and modify the contact map in a SBM to accommodate the inferred dynamics. By taking into account the probable native state dynamics, the experimental transition state is recovered in the model, and the correct order of folding events is restored. Our study highlights how the shared energy landscape connects folding and function by showing that a better description of the native basin improves the prediction of the folding mechanism.

  6. Can the fluorescence of green fluorescent protein chromophore be related directly to the nativity of protein structure?

    PubMed

    Melnik, B S; Povarnitsyna, T V; Melnik, T N

    2009-12-25

    In studies of green fluorescence protein (GFP) or other proteins with the use of GFP as a marker, the fluorescence of GFP is for the most part related directly to the nativity of its structure. Naturally, such a relation does exist since the chromophore of this protein is formed autocatalytically only just after GFP acquires its native structure. However, the fluorescence method may not yield reliable information on protein structure when studying renaturation and denaturation of this protein (with the formed chromophore). Using proteolysis, denaturant gradient gel electrophoresis and circular dichroism, we demonstrate herein that at major disturbances of the native structure of protein GFP-cycle3 the intensity of fluorescence of its chromophore can change insignificantly. In other words, the chromophore fluorescence does not reliably mirror alterations in protein structure. Since the main conclusions of this study are especially qualitative, it can be suggested that during renaturation/denaturation of wild-type GFP and its "multicolored" mutants their fluorescence is also not always associated with the changes in the structure of these proteins.

  7. Amyloidogenesis of Natively Unfolded Proteins

    PubMed Central

    Uversky, Vladimir N.

    2009-01-01

    Aggregation and subsequent development of protein deposition diseases originate from conformational changes in corresponding amyloidogenic proteins. The accumulated data support the model where protein fibrillogenesis proceeds via the formation of a relatively unfolded amyloidogenic conformation, which shares many structural properties with the pre-molten globule state, a partially folded intermediate first found during the equilibrium and kinetic (un)folding studies of several globular proteins and later described as one of the structural forms of natively unfolded proteins. The flexibility of this structural form is essential for the conformational rearrangements driving the formation of the core cross-beta structure of the amyloid fibril. Obviously, molecular mechanisms describing amyloidogenesis of ordered and natively unfolded proteins are different. For ordered protein to fibrillate, its unique and rigid structure has to be destabilized and partially unfolded. On the other hand, fibrillogenesis of a natively unfolded protein involves the formation of partially folded conformation; i.e., partial folding rather than unfolding. In this review recent findings are surveyed to illustrate some unique features of the natively unfolded proteins amyloidogenesis. PMID:18537543

  8. Selective Refinement and Molecular Dynamics Ranking Selection of Near-native Protein Structures

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Jiong; Zhang, Jingfen; Xu, Dong; Shang, Yi; Kosztin, Ioan

    2014-03-01

    In recent years in silico protein structure prediction reached a level where a variety of servers can generate large pools of near-native structures. However, the identification and further refinement of the best structures from the pool of decoys remain problematic. To address these issues, we have developed a selective refinement protocol (SRP), and a molecular dynamics (MD) simulation based ranking method (MDR). In SRP the refinement of structures is accomplished by using the relax mode of the Rosetta software package, subject to specific constraints determined by the type and complexity of the target. The final best models are selected with MDR by testing their relative stability against gradual heating during all atom MD simulations. We have implemented the selective refinement protocol and the MDR method in Mufold-MD, our fully automated protein structure prediction server. Mufold-MD was one of the top servers in the CASP10 competition.

  9. Contribution of cotranslational folding to the rate of formation of native protein structure.

    PubMed Central

    Fedorov, A N; Baldwin, T O

    1995-01-01

    To compare the process of protein folding in the cell with refolding following denaturation in vitro, we have investigated and compared the kinetics of renaturation of a full-length protein upon dilution from concentrated urea with the rate of folding in the course of biosynthesis. Formation of enzymatically active bacterial luciferase, an alpha beta heterodimer, occurred 2 min after completion of beta-subunit synthesis in an Escherichia coli cell-free system. Renaturation of urea-denatured beta subunit, either in the presence of the cell-free protein synthesis system or in buffer solutions, proceeded more slowly. Cellular components present in the cell-free protein synthesis system slightly accelerated the rate of refolding of urea-unfolded beta subunit. The results indicate that the luciferase beta subunit begins the folding process cotranslationally and that cotranslational folding contributes to the rapid formation of the native structure in the cell. Images Fig. 1 PMID:7862665

  10. Surface-enhanced resonance Raman spectroscopic characterization of the protein native structure.

    PubMed

    Feng, Manliang; Tachikawa, Hiroyasu

    2008-06-11

    Surface-enhanced resonance Raman scattering (SERRS) spectra of biological species are often different from their resonance Raman (RR) spectra. A home-designed Raman flow system is used to determine the factors that contribute to the difference between the SERRS and RR of met-myoglobin (metMb). The results indicate that both the degree of protein-nanoparticles interaction and the laser irradiation contribute to the structural changes and are responsible for the observed differences between the SERRS and RR spectra of metMb. The prolonged adsorption of the protein molecules on the nanoparticle surface, which is the condition normally used for the conventional SERRS experiments, disturbs the heme pocket structure and facilitates the charge transfer process and the photoinduced transformation of proteins. The disruption of the heme pocket results in the loss of the distal water molecule, and the resulting SERRS spectrum of metMb shows a 5-coordinated high-spin heme. The flow system, when operated at a moderately high flow rate, can basically eliminate the factors that disturb the protein structure while maintaining a high enhancement factor. The SERRS spectrum obtained from a 1 x 10 (-7) M metMb solution using this flow system is basically identical to the RR spectrum of a 5 x 10 (-4) M metMb solution. Therefore, the Raman flow system reported here should be useful for characterizing the protein-nanoparticles interaction and the native structure of proteins using SERRS spectroscopy.

  11. Residue network in protein native structure belongs to the universality class of a three-dimensional critical percolation cluster.

    PubMed

    Morita, Hidetoshi; Takano, Mitsunori

    2009-02-01

    Single protein molecules are regarded as contact networks of amino-acid residues. Relationships between the shortest path lengths and the numbers of residues within single molecules in the native structures are examined for various sized proteins. A universal scaling among proteins is obtained, which shows that the residue networks are fractal networks. This universal fractal network is characterized with three kinds of dimensions: the network topological dimension D{c} approximately 1.9 , the fractal dimension D{f} approximately 2.5 , and the spectral dimension D{s} approximately 1.3 . These values are in surprisingly good coincidence with those of the three-dimensional critical percolation cluster. Hence the residue contact networks in the protein native structures belong to the universality class of the three-dimensional percolation cluster. The criticality is relevant to the ambivalence in the protein native structures, the coexistence of stability and instability, both of which are necessary for protein functions.

  12. Residue network in protein native structure belongs to the universality class of a three-dimensional critical percolation cluster

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Morita, Hidetoshi; Takano, Mitsunori

    2009-02-01

    Single protein molecules are regarded as contact networks of amino-acid residues. Relationships between the shortest path lengths and the numbers of residues within single molecules in the native structures are examined for various sized proteins. A universal scaling among proteins is obtained, which shows that the residue networks are fractal networks. This universal fractal network is characterized with three kinds of dimensions: the network topological dimension Dc≈1.9 , the fractal dimension Df≈2.5 , and the spectral dimension Ds≈1.3 . These values are in surprisingly good coincidence with those of the three-dimensional critical percolation cluster. Hence the residue contact networks in the protein native structures belong to the universality class of the three-dimensional percolation cluster. The criticality is relevant to the ambivalence in the protein native structures, the coexistence of stability and instability, both of which are necessary for protein functions.

  13. Identifying native-like protein structures using physics-based potentials.

    PubMed

    Dominy, Brian N; Brooks, Charles L

    2002-01-15

    As the field of structural genomics matures, new methods will be required that can accurately and rapidly distinguish reliable structure predictions from those that are more dubious. We present a method based on the CHARMM gas phase implicit hydrogen force field in conjunction with a generalized Born implicit solvation term that allows one to make such discrimination. We begin by analyzing pairs of threaded structures from the EMBL database, and find that it is possible to identify the misfolded structures with over 90% accuracy. Further, we find that misfolded states are generally favored by the solvation term due to the mispairing of favorable intramolecular ionic contacts. We also examine 29 sets of 29 misfolded globin sequences from Levitt's "Decoys 'R' Us" database generated using a sequence homology-based method. Again, we find that discrimination is possible with approximately 90% accuracy. Also, even in these less distorted structures, mispairing of ionic contacts results in a more favorable solvation energy for misfolded states. This is also found to be the case for collapsed, partially folded conformations of CspA and protein G taken from folding free energy calculations. We also find that the inclusion of the generalized Born solvation term, in postprocess energy evaluation, improves the correlation between structural similarity and energy in the globin database. This significantly improves the reliability of the hypothesis that more energetically favorable structures are also more similar to the native conformation. Additionally, we examine seven extensive collections of misfolded structures created by Park and Levitt using a four-state reduced model also contained in the "Decoys 'R' Us" database. Results from these large databases confirm those obtained in the EMBL and misfolded globin databases concerning predictive accuracy, the energetic advantage of misfolded proteins regarding the solvation component, and the improved correlation between energy

  14. Stepwise evolution of protein native structure with electrospray into the gas phase, 10(-12) to 10(2) s.

    PubMed

    Breuker, Kathrin; McLafferty, Fred W

    2008-11-25

    Mass spectrometry (MS) has been revolutionized by electrospray ionization (ESI), which is sufficiently "gentle" to introduce nonvolatile biomolecules such as proteins and nucleic acids (RNA or DNA) into the gas phase without breaking covalent bonds. Although in some cases noncovalent bonding can be maintained sufficiently for ESI/MS characterization of the solution structure of large protein complexes and native enzyme/substrate binding, the new gaseous environment can ultimately cause dramatic structural alterations. The temporal (picoseconds to minutes) evolution of native protein structure during and after transfer into the gas phase, as proposed here based on a variety of studies, can involve side-chain collapse, unfolding, and refolding into new, non-native structures. Control of individual experimental factors allows optimization for specific research objectives.

  15. X-ray Structure of Native Scorpion Toxin BmBKTx1 by Racemic Protein Crystallography Using Direct Methods

    SciTech Connect

    Mandal, Kalyaneswar; Pentelute, Brad L.; Tereshko, Valentina; Kossiakoff, Anthony A.; Kent, Stephen B.H.

    2009-04-08

    Racemic protein crystallography, enabled by total chemical synthesis, has allowed us to determine the X-ray structure of native scorpion toxin BmBKTx1; direct methods were used for phase determination. This is the first example of a protein racemate that crystallized in space group I41/a.

  16. The Cold Denatured State of the C-terminal Domain of Protein L9 Is Compact and Contains Both Native and Non-native Structure

    PubMed Central

    Shan, Bing; McClendon, Sebastian; Rospigliosi, Carla; Eliezer, David; Raleigh, Daniel P

    2011-01-01

    Cold denaturation is a general property of globular proteins, and the process provides insight into the origins of the cooperativity of protein folding and the nature of partially folded states. Unfortunately, studies of protein cold denaturation have been hindered by the fact that the cold denatured state is normally difficult to access experimentally. Special conditions such as addition of high concentrations of denaturant, encapsulation into reverse micelles, the formation of emulsified solutions, high pressure or extremes of pHs, have been applied, but these can perturb the unfolded state of proteins. The cold denatured state of the C-terminal domain of the ribosomal protein L9 can be populated under native like conditions by taking advantage of a destabilizing point mutation which leads to cold denaturation at temperatures above zero °C. This state is in slow exchange with the native state on the NMR time scale. Virtually complete backbone 15N, 13C and 1H as well as side-chain 13Cβ and 1Hβ chemical shift assignments were obtained for the cold denatured state at pH 5.7, 12 °C. Chemical shift analysis, backbone N-H residual dipolar couplings, amide proton NOEs and R2 relaxation rates all indicate that the cold denatured state of CTL9 contains significant native like secondary structure, but also contains non-native structure. The regions corresponding to the two native α-helices show a strong tendency to populate helical Φ and Ψ angles. The segment which connects α-helix 2 and β-strand 2 (residues 107–124) in the native state exhibits a significant preference to form non-native helical structure in the cold denatured state. The structure observed in the cold denatured state of the I98A mutant is similar to that observed in the pH 3.8 unfolded state of wild type CTL9 at 25 °C, suggesting that it is a robust feature of the denatured state ensemble of this protein. The implications for protein folding and for studies of cold denatured states are

  17. Retention of Native Protein Structures in the Absence of Solvent: A Coupled Ion Mobility and Spectroscopic Study

    PubMed Central

    Seo, Jongcheol; Hoffmann, Waldemar; Warnke, Stephan; Bowers, Michael T.; Pagel, Kevin

    2016-01-01

    Abstract Can the structures of small to medium‐sized proteins be conserved after transfer from the solution phase to the gas phase? A large number of studies have been devoted to this topic, however the answer has not been unambiguously determined to date. A clarification of this problem is important since it would allow very sensitive native mass spectrometry techniques to be used to address problems relevant to structural biology. A combination of ion‐mobility mass spectrometry with infrared spectroscopy was used to investigate the secondary and tertiary structure of proteins carefully transferred from solution to the gas phase. The two proteins investigated are myoglobin and β‐lactoglobulin, which are prototypical examples of helical and β‐sheet proteins, respectively. The results show that for low charge states under gentle conditions, aspects of the native secondary and tertiary structure can be conserved. PMID:27545682

  18. A Systematic Analysis of the Structures of Heterologously Expressed Proteins and Those from Their Native Hosts in the RCSB PDB Archive

    PubMed Central

    Zhou, Ren-Bin; Lu, Hui-Meng; Liu, Jie; Shi, Jian-Yu; Zhu, Jing; Lu, Qin-Qin; Yin, Da-Chuan

    2016-01-01

    Recombinant expression of proteins has become an indispensable tool in modern day research. The large yields of recombinantly expressed proteins accelerate the structural and functional characterization of proteins. Nevertheless, there are literature reported that the recombinant proteins show some differences in structure and function as compared with the native ones. Now there have been more than 100,000 structures (from both recombinant and native sources) publicly available in the Protein Data Bank (PDB) archive, which makes it possible to investigate if there exist any proteins in the RCSB PDB archive that have identical sequence but have some difference in structures. In this paper, we present the results of a systematic comparative study of the 3D structures of identical naturally purified versus recombinantly expressed proteins. The structural data and sequence information of the proteins were mined from the RCSB PDB archive. The combinatorial extension (CE), FATCAT-flexible and TM-Align methods were employed to align the protein structures. The root-mean-square distance (RMSD), TM-score, P-value, Z-score, secondary structural elements and hydrogen bonds were used to assess the structure similarity. A thorough analysis of the PDB archive generated five-hundred-seventeen pairs of native and recombinant proteins that have identical sequence. There were no pairs of proteins that had the same sequence and significantly different structural fold, which support the hypothesis that expression in a heterologous host usually could fold correctly into their native forms. PMID:27517583

  19. Identifying native-like protein structures with scoring functions based on all-atom ECEPP force fields, implicit solvent models and structure relaxation.

    PubMed

    Arnautova, Yelena A; Vorobjev, Yury N; Vila, Jorge A; Scheraga, Harold A

    2009-10-01

    Availability of energy functions which can discriminate native-like from non-native protein conformations is crucial for theoretical protein structure prediction and refinement of low-resolution protein models. This article reports the results of benchmark tests for scoring functions based on two all-atom ECEPP force fields, that is, ECEPP/3 and ECEPP05, and two implicit solvent models for a large set of protein decoys. The following three scoring functions are considered: (i) ECEPP05 plus a solvent-accessible surface area model with the parameters optimized with a set of protein decoys (ECEPP05/SA); (ii) ECEPP/3 plus the solvent-accessible surface area model of Ooi et al. (Proc Natl Acad Sci USA 1987;84:3086-3090) (ECEPP3/OONS); and (iii) ECEPP05 plus an implicit solvent model based on a solution of the Poisson equation with an optimized Fast Adaptive Multigrid Boundary Element (FAMBEpH) method (ECEPP05/FAMBEpH). Short Monte Carlo-with-Minimization (MCM) simulations, following local energy minimization, are used as a scoring method with ECEPP05/SA and ECEPP3/OONS potentials, whereas energy calculation is used with ECEPP05/FAMBEpH. The performance of each scoring function is evaluated by examining its ability to distinguish between native-like and non-native protein structures. The results of the tests show that the new ECEPP05/SA scoring function represents a significant improvement over the earlier ECEPP3/OONS version of the force field. Thus, it is able to rank native-like structures with C(alpha) root-mean-square-deviations below 3.5 A as lowest-energy conformations for 76% and within the top 10 for 87% of the proteins tested, compared with 69 and 80%, respectively, for ECEPP3/OONS. The use of the FAMBEpH solvation model, which provides a more accurate description of the protein-solvent interactions, improves the discriminative ability of the scoring function to 89%. All failed tests in which the native-like structures cannot be discriminated as those with low

  20. Native Mass Spectrometry of Photosynthetic Pigment-Protein Complexes

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Hao; Cui, Weidong; Gross, Michael L.; Blankenship, Robert E.

    2013-01-01

    Native mass spectrometry, or as is sometimes called “native electrospray (ESI)” allows proteins in their native or near-native protein in solution to be introduced into gas phase and interrogated by MS. This approach is now a powerful tool to investigate protein complexes. This article reviews the background of native MS of protein complexes and describes its strengths, taking photosynthetic pigment-protein complexes as examples. Native MS can be utilized in combination with other MS-based approaches to obtain complementary information to that provided by tools such as X-ray crystallography and NMR spectroscopy to understand the structure-function relationships of protein complexes. When additional information beyond that provided by native MS is required, other MS-based strategies can be successfully applied to augment the results of native MS. PMID:23337874

  1. Native-like in vivo folding of a circularly permuted jellyroll protein shown by crystal structure analysis.

    PubMed Central

    Hahn, M; Piotukh, K; Borriss, R; Heinemann, U

    1994-01-01

    A jellyroll beta-sandwich protein, the Bacillus beta-glucanase H(A16-M), is used to probe the role of N-terminal peptide regions in protein folding in vivo. A gene encoding H(A16-M) is rearranged to place residues 1-58 of the protein behind a signal peptide and residues 59-214. The rearranged gene is expressed in Escherichia coli. The resultant circularly permuted protein, cpA16M-59, is secreted into the periplasm, correctly processed, and folded into a stable and active enzyme. Crystal structure analysis at 2.0-A resolution, R = 15.3%, shows cpA16M-59 to have a three-dimensional structure nearly identical with that of the parent beta-glucanase. An analogous experiment based on the wild-type Bacillus macerans beta-glucanase, giving rise to the circularly permuted variant cpMAC-57, yields the same results. Folding of these proteins, therefore, is not a vectorial process depending on the conformation adopted by their native N-terminal oligopeptides after ribosomal synthesis and translocation through the cytoplasmic membrane. Images PMID:7937966

  2. Native structure of a retroviral envelope protein and its conformational change upon interaction with the target cell.

    PubMed

    Riedel, Christiane; Vasishtan, Daven; Siebert, C Alistair; Whittle, Cathy; Lehmann, Maik J; Mothes, Walther; Grünewald, Kay

    2017-02-01

    Enveloped viruses enter their host cells by membrane fusion. The process of attachment and fusion in retroviruses is mediated by a single viral envelope glycoprotein (Env). Conformational changes of Env in the course of fusion are a focus of intense studies. Here we provide further insight into the changes occurring in retroviral Env during its initial interaction with the cell, employing murine leukemia virus (MLV) as model system. We first determined the structure of both natively membrane anchored MLV Env and MLV Env tagged with YFP in the proline rich region (PRR) by electron cryo tomography (cET) and sub-volume averaging. At a resolution of ∼20Å, native MLV Env presents as a hollow trimer (height ∼85Å, diameter ∼120Å) composed of step-shaped protomers. The major difference to the YFP-tagged protein was in regions outside of the central trimer. Next, we focused on elucidating the changes in MLV Env upon interaction with a host cell. Virus interaction with the plasma membrane occurred over a large surface and Env clustering on the binding site was observed. Sub-volume averaging did yield a low-resolution structure of Env interacting with the cell, which had lost its threefold symmetry and was elongated by ∼35Å in comparison to the unbound protein. This indicates a major rearrangement of Env upon host cell binding. At the site of virus interaction, the otherwise clearly defined bilayer structure of the host cell plasma membrane was much less evident, indicative of integral membrane protein accumulation and/or a change in membrane lipid composition.

  3. How Closely Related Are Conformations of Protein Ions Sampled by IM-MS to Native Solution Structures?

    PubMed

    Chen, Shu-Hua; Russell, David H

    2015-09-01

    Here, we critically evaluate the effects of changes in the ion internal energy (E(int)) on ion-neutral collision cross sections (CCS) of ions of two structurally diverse proteins, specifically the [M + 6H](6+) ion of ubiquitin (ubq(6+)), the [M + 5H](5+) ion of the intrinsically disordered protein (IDP) apo-metallothionein-2A (MT), and its partially- and fully-metalated isoform, the [CdiMT](5+) ion. The ion-neutral CCS for ions formed by "native-state" ESI show a strong dependence on E(int). Collisional activation is used to increase E(int) prior to the ions entering and within the traveling wave (TW) ion mobility analyzer. Comparisons of experimental CCSs with those generated by molecular dynamics (MD) simulation for solution-phase ions and solvent-free ions as a function of temperature provide new insights about conformational preferences and retention of solution conformations. The E(int)-dependent CCSs, which reveal increased conformational diversity of the ion population, are discussed in terms of folding/unfolding of solvent-free ions. For example, ubiquitin ions that have low internal energies retain native-like conformations, whereas ions that are heated by collisional activation possess higher internal energies and yield a broader range of CCS owing to increased conformational diversity due to losses of secondary and tertiary structures. In contrast, the CCS profile for the IDP apoMT is consistent with kinetic trapping of an ion population composed of a wide range of conformers, and as the E(int) is increased, these structurally labile conformers unfold to an elongated conformation.

  4. How Closely Related Are Conformations of Protein Ions Sampled by IM-MS to Native Solution Structures?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, Shu-Hua; Russell, David H.

    2015-09-01

    Here, we critically evaluate the effects of changes in the ion internal energy (Eint) on ion-neutral collision cross sections (CCS) of ions of two structurally diverse proteins, specifically the [M + 6H]6+ ion of ubiquitin (ubq6+), the [M + 5H]5+ ion of the intrinsically disordered protein (IDP) apo-metallothionein-2A (MT), and its partially- and fully-metalated isoform, the [CdiMT]5+ ion. The ion-neutral CCS for ions formed by "native-state" ESI show a strong dependence on Eint. Collisional activation is used to increase Eint prior to the ions entering and within the traveling wave (TW) ion mobility analyzer. Comparisons of experimental CCSs with those generated by molecular dynamics (MD) simulation for solution-phase ions and solvent-free ions as a function of temperature provide new insights about conformational preferences and retention of solution conformations. The Eint-dependent CCSs, which reveal increased conformational diversity of the ion population, are discussed in terms of folding/unfolding of solvent-free ions. For example, ubiquitin ions that have low internal energies retain native-like conformations, whereas ions that are heated by collisional activation possess higher internal energies and yield a broader range of CCS owing to increased conformational diversity due to losses of secondary and tertiary structures. In contrast, the CCS profile for the IDP apoMT is consistent with kinetic trapping of an ion population composed of a wide range of conformers, and as the Eint is increased, these structurally labile conformers unfold to an elongated conformation.

  5. Charging of Proteins in Native Mass Spectrometry

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Susa, Anna C.; Xia, Zijie; Tang, Henry Y. H.; Tainer, John A.; Williams, Evan R.

    2017-02-01

    Factors that influence the charging of protein ions formed by electrospray ionization from aqueous solutions in which proteins have native structures and function were investigated. Protein ions ranging in molecular weight from 12.3 to 79.7 kDa and pI values from 5.4 to 9.6 were formed from different solutions and reacted with volatile bases of gas-phase basicities higher than that of ammonia in the cell of a Fourier-transform ion cyclotron resonance mass spectrometer. The charge-state distribution of cytochrome c ions formed from aqueous ammonium or potassium acetate is the same. Moreover, ions formed from these two solutions do not undergo proton transfer to 2-fluoropyridine, which is 8 kcal/mol more basic than ammonia. These results provide compelling evidence that proton transfer between ammonia and protein ions does not limit protein ion charge in native electrospray ionization. Both circular dichroism and ion mobility measurements indicate that there are differences in conformations of proteins in pure water and aqueous ammonium acetate, and these differences can account for the difference in the extent of charging and proton-transfer reactivities of protein ions formed from these solutions. The extent of proton transfer of the protein ions with higher gas-phase basicity bases trends with how closely the protein ions are charged to the value predicted by the Rayleigh limit for spherical water droplets approximately the same size as the proteins. These results indicate that droplet charge limits protein ion charge in native mass spectrometry and are consistent with these ions being formed by the charged residue mechanism.

  6. Native dynamics from diversity in NMR structures

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lammert, Heiko; Onuchic, Jose

    2015-03-01

    Protein function relies on the characteristic dynamics that arise in the protein's unique native structure, controlled by the smooth, funneled energy landscape evolved to enable fast and reliable folding. Structure-based models draw on energy landscape theory to build an ideally funneled energy landscape only from a protein's native structure. Simplified interactions of homogeneous strength are used to eliminate energetic frustration. The dynamics of the model are controlled by geometric constraints imposed by the native fold. The energy landscapes of many actual proteins are smooth enough to let such unfrustrated models describe their folding mechanisms. But conflicting functional demands upon the sequence may introduce sufficient frustration into the energetics to affect the dynamics. For such cases heterogeneous interactions can be optimized based on additional data. We use the diversity among the conformations deposited in a set of NMR structures to estimate the extent of fluctuations in the native state to build an improved model of protein S6. Qualitative modifications bring the observed mechanism into agreement with experiment, and matching of the entire fluctuation profile leads to similar contact maps as optimization based on either phi-values of sequence data.

  7. Native Chemical Ligation at Asx-Cys, Glx-Cys: Chemical Synthesis and High Resolution X-ray Structure of ShK Toxin by Racemic Protein Crystallography

    PubMed Central

    Dang, Bobo; Kubota, Tomoya; Mandal, Kalyaneswar; Bezanilla, Francisco; Kent, Stephen B. H.

    2013-01-01

    We have re-examined the utility of native chemical ligation at −Gln/Glu-Cys− [Glx-Cys] and −Asn/Asp-Cys− [Asx-Cys] sites. Using the improved thioaryl catalyst 4-mercaptophenylacetic acid (MPAA), native chemical ligation could be performed at −Gln-Cys− and Asn-Cys− sites without side reactions. After optimization, ligation at a −Glu-Cys− could also be used as a ligation site, with minimal levels of byproduct formation. However, −Asp-Cys− is not appropriate for use as a site for native chemical ligation because of formation of significant amounts of β-linked byproduct. The feasibility of native chemical ligation at −Gln-Cys− enabled a convergent total chemical synthesis of the enantiomeric forms of the ShK toxin protein molecule. The D-ShK protein molecule was ~50,000-fold less active in blocking the Kv1.3 channel than the L-ShK protein molecule. Racemic protein crystallography was used to obtain high resolution X-ray diffraction data for ShK toxin. The structure was solved by direct methods and showed significant differences from the previously reported NMR structures in some regions of the ShK protein molecule. PMID:23919482

  8. Protein-inhibitor flexible docking by a multicanonical sampling: native complex structure with the lowest free energy and a free-energy barrier distinguishing the native complex from the others.

    PubMed

    Kamiya, Narutoshi; Yonezawa, Yasushige; Nakamura, Haruki; Higo, Junichi

    2008-01-01

    Flexible docking between a protein (lysozyme) and an inhibitor (tri-N-acetyl-D-glucosamine, tri-NAG) was carried out by an enhanced conformational sampling method, multicanonical molecular dynamics simulation. We used a flexible all-atom model to express lysozyme, tri-NAG, and water molecules surrounding the two bio-molecules. The advantages of this sampling method are as follows: the conformation of system is widely sampled without trapping at energy minima, a thermally equilibrated conformational ensemble at an arbitrary temperature can be reconstructed from the simulation trajectory, and the thermodynamic weight can be assigned to each sampled conformation. During the simulation, exchanges between the binding and free (i.e., unbinding) states of the protein and the inhibitor were repeatedly observed. The conformational ensemble reconstructed at 300 K involved various conformational clusters. The main outcome of the current study is that the most populated conformational cluster (i.e., the cluster of the lowest free energy) was assigned to the native complex structure (i.e., the X-ray complex structure). The simulation also produced non-native complex structures, where the protein and the inhibitor bound with different modes from that of the native complex structure, as well as the unbinding structures. A free-energy barrier (i.e., activation free energy) was clearly detected between the native complex structures and the other structures. The thermal fluctuations of tri-NAG in the lowest free-energy complex correlated well with the X-ray B-factors of tri-NAG in the X-ray complex structure. The existence of the free-energy barrier ensures that the lowest free-energy structure can be discriminated naturally from the other structures. In other words, the multicanonical molecular dynamics simulation can predict the native complex structure without any empirical objective function. The current study also manifested that the flexible all-atom model and the physico

  9. Rational design of mutations that change the aggregation rate of a protein while maintaining its native structure and stability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Camilloni, Carlo; Sala, Benedetta Maria; Sormanni, Pietro; Porcari, Riccardo; Corazza, Alessandra; De Rosa, Matteo; Zanini, Stefano; Barbiroli, Alberto; Esposito, Gennaro; Bolognesi, Martino; Bellotti, Vittorio; Vendruscolo, Michele; Ricagno, Stefano

    2016-05-01

    A wide range of human diseases is associated with mutations that, destabilizing proteins native state, promote their aggregation. However, the mechanisms leading from folded to aggregated states are still incompletely understood. To investigate these mechanisms, we used a combination of NMR spectroscopy and molecular dynamics simulations to compare the native state dynamics of Beta-2 microglobulin (β2m), whose aggregation is associated with dialysis-related amyloidosis, and its aggregation-resistant mutant W60G. Our results indicate that W60G low aggregation propensity can be explained, beyond its higher stability, by an increased average protection of the aggregation-prone residues at its surface. To validate these findings, we designed β2m variants that alter the aggregation-prone exposed surface of wild-type and W60G β2m modifying their aggregation propensity. These results allowed us to pinpoint the role of dynamics in β2m aggregation and to provide a new strategy to tune protein aggregation by modulating the exposure of aggregation-prone residues.

  10. Rational design of mutations that change the aggregation rate of a protein while maintaining its native structure and stability

    PubMed Central

    Camilloni, Carlo; Sala, Benedetta Maria; Sormanni, Pietro; Porcari, Riccardo; Corazza, Alessandra; De Rosa, Matteo; Zanini, Stefano; Barbiroli, Alberto; Esposito, Gennaro; Bolognesi, Martino; Bellotti, Vittorio; Vendruscolo, Michele; Ricagno, Stefano

    2016-01-01

    A wide range of human diseases is associated with mutations that, destabilizing proteins native state, promote their aggregation. However, the mechanisms leading from folded to aggregated states are still incompletely understood. To investigate these mechanisms, we used a combination of NMR spectroscopy and molecular dynamics simulations to compare the native state dynamics of Beta-2 microglobulin (β2m), whose aggregation is associated with dialysis-related amyloidosis, and its aggregation-resistant mutant W60G. Our results indicate that W60G low aggregation propensity can be explained, beyond its higher stability, by an increased average protection of the aggregation-prone residues at its surface. To validate these findings, we designed β2m variants that alter the aggregation-prone exposed surface of wild-type and W60G β2m modifying their aggregation propensity. These results allowed us to pinpoint the role of dynamics in β2m aggregation and to provide a new strategy to tune protein aggregation by modulating the exposure of aggregation-prone residues. PMID:27150430

  11. How special is the biochemical function of native proteins?

    PubMed

    Skolnick, Jeffrey; Gao, Mu; Zhou, Hongyi

    2016-01-01

    Native proteins perform an amazing variety of biochemical functions, including enzymatic catalysis, and can engage in protein-protein and protein-DNA interactions that are essential for life. A key question is how special are these functional properties of proteins. Are they extremely rare, or are they an intrinsic feature? Comparison to the properties of compact conformations of artificially generated compact protein structures selected for thermodynamic stability but not any type of function, the artificial (ART) protein library, demonstrates that a remarkable number of the properties of native-like proteins are recapitulated. These include the complete set of small molecule ligand-binding pockets and most protein-protein interfaces. ART structures are predicted to be capable of weakly binding metabolites and cover a significant fraction of metabolic pathways, with the most enriched pathways including ancient ones such as glycolysis. Native-like active sites are also found in ART proteins. A small fraction of ART proteins are predicted to have strong protein-protein and protein-DNA interactions. Overall, it appears that biochemical function is an intrinsic feature of proteins which nature has significantly optimized during evolution. These studies raise questions as to the relative roles of specificity and promiscuity in the biochemical function and control of cells that need investigation.

  12. In silico design of an immunogen against Acinetobacter baumannii based on a novel model for native structure of Outer membrane protein A.

    PubMed

    Jahangiri, Abolfazl; Rasooli, Iraj; Owlia, Parviz; Fooladi, Abbas Ali Imani; Salimian, Jafar

    2017-04-01

    Outer membrane protein A (OmpA) is the most promising vaccine candidate against one of the most successful nosocomial pathogens, A. baumannii. Despite advantages of the antigen, its cytotoxicity could be considered as a challenge in clinical trials. In order to improve this effective immunogen, rational vaccine design strategies such as structure-based vaccinology should be assessed. However, native structure of OmpA remains controversial. The present study is conducted to address the native structure of OmpA; then, a novel immunogen with lower toxicity and higher antigenicity was designed based on structural vaccinology. Various bioinformatic and immunoinformatic tools were harnessed to perform analyses such as topology, secondary structure, and tertiary structure predictions as well as B-cell epitope predictions. A novel 12-stranded model is suggested for OmpA. K320 and K322 were substituted by Alanine, "NADEEFWN" sequence was replaced by "YKYDFDGVNRGTRGTSEEGTL", Position 1-24 at the N-terminus and the C-terminal sequence "VVQPGQEAAAPAAAQ" were removed. The designed construct has more epitope density and antigenic properties with higher immunogenicity while its cytotoxicity is decreased. Moreover, this single cross-protective antigen could trigger antibodies rendering protection against two important nosocomial pathogens i.e. Pseudomonas aeruginosa and A. baumannii.

  13. Atomic force microscopy and spectroscopy of native membrane proteins.

    PubMed

    Müller, Daniel J; Engel, Andreas

    2007-01-01

    Membrane proteins comprise 30% of the proteome of higher organisms. They mediate energy conversion, signal transduction, solute transport and secretion. Their native environment is a bilayer in a physiological buffer solution, hence their structure and function are preferably assessed in this environment. The surface structure of single membrane proteins can be determined in buffer solutions by atomic force microscopy (AFM) at a lateral resolution of less than 1 nm and a vertical resolution of 0.1-0.2 nm. Moreover, single proteins can be directly addressed, stuck to the AFM stylus and subsequently unfolded, revealing the molecular interactions of the protein studied. The examples discussed here illustrate the power of AFM in the structural analysis of membrane proteins in a native environment.

  14. Native mass spectrometry: towards high-throughput structural proteomics.

    PubMed

    Kondrat, Frances D L; Struwe, Weston B; Benesch, Justin L P

    2015-01-01

    Native mass spectrometry (MS) has become a sensitive method for structural proteomics, allowing practitioners to gain insight into protein self-assembly, including stoichiometry and three-dimensional architecture, as well as complementary thermodynamic and kinetic aspects. Although MS is typically performed in vacuum, a body of literature has described how native solution-state structure is largely retained on the timescale of the experiment. Native MS offers the benefit that it requires substantially smaller quantities of a sample than traditional structural techniques such as NMR and X-ray crystallography, and is therefore well suited to high-throughput studies. Here we first describe the native MS approach and outline the structural proteomic data that it can deliver. We then provide practical details of experiments to examine the structural and dynamic properties of protein assemblies, highlighting potential pitfalls as well as principles of best practice.

  15. Critical Fluctuations in the Native State of Proteins

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tang, Qian-Yuan; Zhang, Yang-Yang; Wang, Jun; Wang, Wei; Chialvo, Dante R.

    2017-02-01

    Based on protein structural ensembles determined by nuclear magnetic resonance, we study the position fluctuations of residues by calculating distance-dependent correlations and conducting finite-size scaling analysis. The fluctuations exhibit high susceptibility and long-range correlations up to the protein sizes. The scaling relations between the correlations or susceptibility and protein sizes resemble those in other physical and biological systems near their critical points. These results indicate that, at the native states, motions of each residue are felt by every other one in the protein. We also find that proteins with larger susceptibility are more frequently observed in nature. Overall, our results suggest that the protein's native state is critical.

  16. Assessment of semiempirical enthalpy of formation in solution as an effective energy function to discriminate native-like structures in protein decoy sets.

    PubMed

    Urquiza-Carvalho, Gabriel Aires; Fragoso, Wallace Duarte; Rocha, Gerd Bruno

    2016-08-05

    In this work, we tested the PM6, PM6-DH+, PM6-D3, and PM7 enthalpies of formation in aqueous solution as scoring functions across 33 decoy sets to discriminate native structures or good models in a decoy set. In each set these semiempirical quantum chemistry methods were compared according to enthalpic and geometric criteria. Enthalpically, we compared the methods according to how much lower was the enthalpy of each native, when compared with the mean enthalpy of its set. Geometrically, we compared the methods according to the fraction of native contacts (Q), which is a measure of geometric closeness between an arbitrary structure and the native. For each set and method, the Q of the best decoy was compared with the Q0 , which is the Q of the decoy closest to the native in the set. It was shown that the PM7 method is able to assign larger energy differences between the native structure and the decoys in a set, arguably because of a better description of dispersion interactions, however PM6-DH+ was slightly better than the rest at selecting geometrically good models in the absence of a native structure in the set. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  17. Fast native-SAD phasing for routine macromolecular structure determination.

    PubMed

    Weinert, Tobias; Olieric, Vincent; Waltersperger, Sandro; Panepucci, Ezequiel; Chen, Lirong; Zhang, Hua; Zhou, Dayong; Rose, John; Ebihara, Akio; Kuramitsu, Seiki; Li, Dianfan; Howe, Nicole; Schnapp, Gisela; Pautsch, Alexander; Bargsten, Katja; Prota, Andrea E; Surana, Parag; Kottur, Jithesh; Nair, Deepak T; Basilico, Federica; Cecatiello, Valentina; Pasqualato, Sebastiano; Boland, Andreas; Weichenrieder, Oliver; Wang, Bi-Cheng; Steinmetz, Michel O; Caffrey, Martin; Wang, Meitian

    2015-02-01

    We describe a data collection method that uses a single crystal to solve X-ray structures by native SAD (single-wavelength anomalous diffraction). We solved the structures of 11 real-life examples, including a human membrane protein, a protein-DNA complex and a 266-kDa multiprotein-ligand complex, using this method. The data collection strategy is suitable for routine structure determination and can be implemented at most macromolecular crystallography synchrotron beamlines.

  18. 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…

  19. Knowledge of Native Protein-Protein Interfaces Is Sufficient To Construct Predictive Models for the Selection of Binding Candidates.

    PubMed

    Popov, Petr; Grudinin, Sergei

    2015-10-26

    Selection of putative binding poses is a challenging part of virtual screening for protein-protein interactions. Predictive models to filter out binding candidates with the highest binding affinities comprise scoring functions that assign a score to each binding pose. Existing scoring functions are typically deduced by collecting statistical information about interfaces of native conformations of protein complexes along with interfaces of a large generated set of non-native conformations. However, the obtained scoring functions become biased toward the method used to generate the non-native conformations, i.e., they may not recognize near-native interfaces generated with a different method. The present study demonstrates that knowledge of only native protein-protein interfaces is sufficient to construct well-discriminative predictive models for the selection of binding candidates. Here we introduce a new scoring method that comprises a knowledge-based potential called KSENIA deduced from structural information about the native interfaces of 844 crystallographic protein-protein complexes. We derive KSENIA using convex optimization with a training set composed of native protein complexes and their near-native conformations obtained using deformations along the low-frequency normal modes. As a result, our knowledge-based potential has only marginal bias toward a method used to generate putative binding poses. Furthermore, KSENIA is smooth by construction, which allows it to be used along with rigid-body optimization to refine the binding poses. Using several test benchmarks, we demonstrate that our method discriminates well native and near-native conformations of protein complexes from non-native ones. Our methodology can be easily adapted to the recognition of other types of molecular interactions, such as protein-ligand, protein-RNA, etc. KSENIA will be made publicly available as a part of the SAMSON software platform at https://team.inria.fr/nano-d/software .

  20. Can natural proteins designed with 'inverted' peptide sequences adopt native-like protein folds?

    PubMed

    Sridhar, Settu; Guruprasad, Kunchur

    2014-01-01

    We have carried out a systematic computational analysis on a representative dataset of proteins of known three-dimensional structure, in order to evaluate whether it would possible to 'swap' certain short peptide sequences in naturally occurring proteins with their corresponding 'inverted' peptides and generate 'artificial' proteins that are predicted to retain native-like protein fold. The analysis of 3,967 representative proteins from the Protein Data Bank revealed 102,677 unique identical inverted peptide sequence pairs that vary in sequence length between 5-12 and 18 amino acid residues. Our analysis illustrates with examples that such 'artificial' proteins may be generated by identifying peptides with 'similar structural environment' and by using comparative protein modeling and validation studies. Our analysis suggests that natural proteins may be tolerant to accommodating such peptides.

  1. The 3D structures of VDAC represent a native conformation

    PubMed Central

    Hiller, Sebastian; Abramson, Jeff; Mannella, Carmen; Wagner, Gerhard; Zeth, Kornelius

    2010-01-01

    The most abundant protein of the mitochondrial outer membrane is the voltage-dependent anion channel (VDAC), which facilitates the exchange of ions and molecules between mitochondria and cytosol and is regulated by interactions with other proteins and small molecules. VDAC has been extensively studied for more than three decades, and last year three independent investigations revealed a structure of VDAC-1 exhibiting 19 transmembrane β-strands, constituting a unique structural class of β-barrel membrane proteins. Here, we provide a historical perspective on VDAC research and give an overview of the experimental design used to obtain these structures. Furthermore, we validate the protein refolding approach and summarize biochemical and biophysical evidence that links the 19-stranded structure to the native form of VDAC. PMID:20708406

  2. Separation of membrane protein complexes by native LDS-PAGE.

    PubMed

    Arnold, Janine; Shapiguzov, Alexey; Fucile, Geoffrey; Rochaix, Jean-David; Goldschmidt-Clermont, Michel; Eichacker, Lutz Andreas

    2014-01-01

    Gel electrophoresis has become one of the most important methods for the analysis of proteins and protein complexes in a molecular weight range of 1-10(7) kDa. The separation of membrane protein complexes remained challenging to standardize until the demonstration of Blue Native PAGE in 1991 [1] and Clear Native PAGE in 1994 [2]. We present a robust protocol for high-resolution separation of photosynthetic complexes from Arabidopsis thaliana using lithium dodecyl sulfate as anion in a modified Blue Native PAGE (LDS-PAGE). Here, non-covalently bound chlorophyll is used as a sensitive probe to characterize the assembly/biogenesis of the pigment-protein complexes essential for photosynthesis. The high fluorescence yield recorded from chlorophyll-binding protein complexes can also be used to establish the separation of native protein complexes as an electrophoretic standard.

  3. Autofluorescence based visualization of proteins from unstained native-PAGE

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Manjunath, S.; Rao, Bola Sadashiva S.; Satyamoorthy, Kapaettu; Mahato, Krishna Kishore

    2015-03-01

    Proteins are the most diverse and functionally active biomolecules in the living system. In order to understand their diversity and dynamic functionality, visualization in native form without altering structural and functional properties during the separation from the complex mixtures is very much essential. In the present study, a sensitive methodology for optimal visualization of unstained or untagged proteins in native poly-acrylamide gel electrophoresis (N-PAGE) has been developed where, concentration of the acrylamide and bis-acrylamide mixture, Percentage of the gel, fixing of the N-PAGE by methanol: acetic acid: water and washing of the gel in the mili-Q water has been optimized for highest sensitivity using laser induced autofluorescence. The outcome with bovine serum albumin (BSA) in PAGE was found to be highest at acrylamide and bis-acrylamide concentrations of 29.2 and 0.8 respectively in 12% N-PAGE. After the electrophoresis run, washing of the N-PAGE immediately with miliQ water for 12 times and eliminating the methanol: acetic acid: water, fixing of the N-PAGE yielded better sensitivity of visualization. Using the above methodology 25ng of BSA protein band in PAGE was clearly identified by the technique. The currently used staining techniques for the visualization of proteins are coomassie brilliant blue and silver staining, have the sensitivity of 100ng and 5ng respectively. The current methodology was found to be more sensitive as compared to coomassie staining and less sensitive compared to silver staining respectively. The added advantage of this methodology is the faster visualization of proteins without altering their structure and functional properties.

  4. Early Structural Evolution of Native Cytochrome c after Solvent Removal

    PubMed Central

    Steinberg, Michal Z.; Elber, Ron; McLafferty, Fred W.; Gerber, R. Benny; Breuker, Kathrin

    2009-01-01

    Electrospray ionization transfers thermally labile biomolecules, such as proteins, from solution into the gas phase, where they can be studied by mass spectrometry. Covalent bonds are generally preserved during and after the phase transition, but it is less clear to what extent noncovalent interactions are affected by the new gaseous environment. Here, we present atomic-level computational data on the structural rearrangement of native cytochrome c immediately after solvent removal. The first structural changes after desolvation occur surprisingly early, on a timescale of picoseconds. For the time segment of up to 4.2 ns investigated here, we observed no significant breaking of native noncovalent bonds; instead, we found formation of new noncovalent bonds. This generally involves charged residues on the protein surface, resulting in transiently stabilized intermediate structures with a global fold that is essentially the same as that in solution. Comparison with data from native electron capture dissociation experiments corroborates both its mechanistic postulations and our computational predictions, and suggests that global structural changes take place on a millisecond timescale not covered by our simulations. PMID:18785672

  5. Analysis of Native-Like Ions Using Structures for Lossless Ion Manipulations.

    PubMed

    Allen, Samuel J; Eaton, Rachel M; Bush, Matthew F

    2016-09-20

    Ion mobility separation of native-like protein and protein complex ions expands the structural information available through native mass spectrometry analysis. Here, we implement Structures for Lossless Ion Manipulations (SLIM) for the analysis of native-like ions. SLIM has been shown previously to operate with near lossless transmission of ions up to 3000 Da in mass. Here for the first time, SLIM was used to separate native-like protein and protein complex ions ranging in mass from 12 to 145 kDa. The resulting arrival-time distributions were monomodal and were used to determine collision cross section values that are within 3% of those determined from radio-frequency-confining drift cell measurements. These results are consistent with the retention of native-like ion structures throughout these experiments. The apparent resolving powers of native-like ions measured using SLIM are as high as 42, which is the highest value reported directly from experimental data for the native-like ion of a protein complex. Interestingly, the apparent resolving power depends strongly on the identity of the analyte, suggesting that the arrival-time distributions of these ions may have contributions from an ensemble of structures in the gas phase that is unique to each analyte. These results suggest that the broad range of emerging SLIM technologies may all be adaptable to the analysis of native-like ions, which will enable future applications in the areas of structural biology, biophysics, and biopharmaceutical characterization.

  6. Reduced native state stability in crowded cellular environment due to protein-protein interactions

    PubMed Central

    Harada, Ryuhei; Tochio, Naoya; Kigawa, Takanori; Sugita, Yuji; Feig, Michael

    2013-01-01

    The effect of cellular crowding environments on protein structure and stability is a key issue in molecular and cellular biology. The classical view of crowding emphasizes the volume exclusion effect that generally favors compact, native states. Here, results from molecular dynamics simulations and NMR experiments show that protein crowders may destabilize native states via protein-protein interactions. In the model system considered here, mixtures of villin head piece and protein G at high concentrations, villin structures become increasingly destabilized upon increasing crowder concentrations. The denatured states observed in the simulation involve partial unfolding as well as more subtle conformational shifts. The unfolded states remain overall compact and only partially overlap with unfolded ensembles at high temperature and in the presence of urea. NMR measurements on the same systems confirm structural changes upon crowding based on changes of chemical shifts relative to dilute conditions. An analysis of protein-protein interactions and energetic aspects suggests the importance of enthalpic and solvation contributions to the crowding free energies that challenge an entropic-centered view of crowding effects. PMID:23402619

  7. Self-assembly studies of native and recombinant fibrous proteins

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wilson, Donna Lucille

    The structure of silk proteins consists of alternating amorphous (glycine-rich) and ordered crystalline regions (poly(alanine) and poly(glycine-alanine) repeats), where the organized regions are typically beta-sheet assemblies. In collagen, the basic helical repeat (glycine-proline-hydroxyproline and variants on this repeat) drives hierarchical assembly. Three polypeptide chains form left-handed poly-proline II-like helices, these three chains then self-assemble to form a right-handed triple helix. The focus of this thesis is on these proteins and defined variations thereof to reveal features of fibrous protein self-assembly. The amino acid sequences of native silk and collagen and their respective assembly environments have been systematically manipulated. Spider silk protein, based on the consensus sequence of Nephila clavipes dragline-silk, was genetically engineered to include methionines flanking the beta-sheet forming polyalanine regions. These methionines could be selectively oxidized and reduced, altering the bulkiness and charge of a methionine-based sulfoxide group to control beta-sheet formation by steric hindrance. A second version of the sterical trigger included a recognition site for Protein Kinase A allowing for the selective phosphorylation of a serine. Patterning a monolayer of precursor "director" molecules on length scales ranging from nanometer- to micrometer-length scales simplifies the interpretation of supramolecular assembly. Utilizing the atomic force microscopy (AFM)-based technique of dip-pen nanolithography, thiolated collagen and a collagen-like peptide were patterned at 30--50 nm line widths on evaporated gold surfaces. These are the largest molecules thus far positively printed on a surface at such small-length scales. The method preserved the triple helical structure and biological activity of collagen and even fostered the formation of characteristic higher-levels of structural organization. Nanopatterns were also achieved for

  8. Native proteins trap high-energy transit conformations.

    PubMed

    Brereton, Andrew E; Karplus, P Andrew

    2015-10-01

    During protein folding and as part of some conformational changes that regulate protein function, the polypeptide chain must traverse high-energy barriers that separate the commonly adopted low-energy conformations. How distortions in peptide geometry allow these barrier-crossing transitions is a fundamental open question. One such important transition involves the movement of a non-glycine residue between the left side of the Ramachandran plot (that is, ϕ < 0°) and the right side (that is, ϕ > 0°). We report that high-energy conformations with ϕ ~ 0°, normally expected to occur only as fleeting transition states, are stably trapped in certain highly resolved native protein structures and that an analysis of these residues provides a detailed, experimentally derived map of the bond angle distortions taking place along the transition path. This unanticipated information lays to rest any uncertainty about whether such transitions are possible and how they occur, and in doing so lays a firm foundation for theoretical studies to better understand the transitions between basins that have been little studied but are integrally involved in protein folding and function. Also, the context of one such residue shows that even a designed highly stable protein can harbor substantial unfavorable interactions.

  9. Maintenance of native-like protein dynamics may not be required for engineering functional proteins.

    PubMed

    Gobeil, Sophie M C; Clouthier, Christopher M; Park, Jaeok; Gagné, Donald; Berghuis, Albert M; Doucet, Nicolas; Pelletier, Joelle N

    2014-10-23

    Proteins are dynamic systems, and understanding dynamics is critical for fully understanding protein function. Therefore, the question of whether laboratory engineering has an impact on protein dynamics is of general interest. Here, we demonstrate that two homologous, naturally evolved enzymes with high degrees of structural and functional conservation also exhibit conserved dynamics. Their similar set of slow timescale dynamics is highly restricted, consistent with evolutionary conservation of a functionally important feature. However, we also show that dynamics of a laboratory-engineered chimeric enzyme obtained by recombination of the two homologs exhibits striking difference on the millisecond timescale, despite function and high-resolution crystal structure (1.05 Å) being conserved. The laboratory-engineered chimera is thus functionally tolerant to modified dynamics on the timescale of catalytic turnover. Tolerance to dynamic variation implies that maintenance of native-like protein dynamics may not be required when engineering functional proteins.

  10. Display of native proteins on Bacillus subtilis spores.

    PubMed

    Pan, Jae-Gu; Choi, Soo-Keun; Jung, Heung-Chae; Kim, Eui-Joong

    2014-09-01

    In principle, protein display is enabled by fusing target proteins to naturally secreted, surface-anchored protein motifs. In this work, we developed a method of native protein display on the Bacillus spore surface that obviates the need to construct fusion proteins to display a motif. Spore coat proteins are expressed in the mother cell compartment and are subsequently assembled and deposited on the surface of spores. Therefore, target proteins overexpressed in the mother cell compartment during the late sporulation phase were expected to be targeted and displayed on the spore surface. As a proof of principle, we demonstrated the display of carboxymethylcellulase (CMCase) in its native form on the spore surface. The target protein, CMCase, was expressed under the control of the cry1Aa promoter, which is controlled by σ(E) and σ(K) and is expressed in the mother cell compartment. The correct display was confirmed using enzyme activity assays, flow cytometry, and immunogold electron microscopy. In addition, we demonstrated the display of a β-galactosidase tetramer and confirmed its correct display using enzyme activity assays and protein characterization. This native protein display system, combined with the robust nature of Bacillus spores, will broaden the range of displayable target proteins. Consequently, the applications of display technology will be expanded, including high-throughput screening, vaccines, biosensors, biocatalysis, bioremediation, and other innovative bioprocesses.

  11. Implementation of Multiple Spectroscopic Techniques to Simultaneously Observe Native and Mutated Protein Unfolding

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cull, Brennan; Ben, Kelty; Link, Justin

    A protein's natural, correctly folded structure can determine the protein's ability to carry out its function. If the unfolding process of proteins can be observed, then the relative stability can be better understood between native and mutated proteins. A global picture of the unfolding process may be completed through the studies of strategically mutated proteins using tryptophan as a probe. Horse heart cytochrome c, a thoroughly studied, model protein was used in our investigation to explore this idea. Various spectroscopic techniques such as circular dichroism (CD), absorbance, and fluorescence were simultaneously applied while slowly unfolding our protein by increasing the concentration of a chemical denaturant, guanidine hydrochloride. This provided us information about the thermodynamic properties of the protein and several mutants which can then be interpreted to gain relative stability information among mutations. Efforts to utilize these techniques on native and mutated proteins in comparison to current scientific unfolding theories will be presented in this session.

  12. Probing Proteins and Differentiating Their Native and Denatured States with Aggregation-Induced Emission Fluorogen

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Leung, Chris Wai Tung; Hong, Yuning; Tang, Ben Zhong

    2013-06-01

    The tertiary 3D structures of proteins determine their unique functions. Perturbation of their native state including denaturation may cause loss of the protein functions. In this work, water-soluble tetraphenylethylene (TPE) fluorophore, sodium 1,2-bis[4-(3-sulfonatopropoxyl)phenyl]-1,2-diphenylethene (BSPOTPE), with aggregation-induced emission (AIE) characteristics is utilized as a fluorescent probe for protein detection and for differentiating their folding modes. Owing to hydrophobic interaction between the proteins and BSPOTPE, it provides a fast and simple method to differentiate the native and denatured states of the proteins through monitoring fluorescence change in solution and PAGE gels. Six proteins are chosen as model proteins in the study. Among them, cytochrome c shows distinctive behavior to other proteins due to the presence of heme group. A comprehensive study of cytochrome c and human serum albumin is carried out in this work.

  13. Dynamics of Vacuoles and H+-Pyrophosphatase Visualized by Monomeric Green Fluorescent Protein in Arabidopsis: Artifactual Bulbs and Native Intravacuolar Spherical Structures[W][OPEN

    PubMed Central

    Segami, Shoji; Makino, Sachi; Miyake, Ai; Asaoka, Mariko; Maeshima, Masayoshi

    2014-01-01

    We prepared Arabidopsis thaliana lines expressing a functional green fluorescent protein (GFP)-linked vacuolar H+-pyrophosphatase (H+-PPase) under the control of its own promoter to investigate morphological dynamics of vacuoles and tissue-specific expression of H+-PPase. The lines obtained had spherical structures in vacuoles with strong fluorescence, which are referred to as bulbs. Quantitative analyses revealed that the occurrence of the bulbs correlated with the amount of GFP. Next, we prepared a construct of H+-PPase linked with a nondimerizing GFP (mGFP); we detected no bulbs. These results indicate that the membranes adhere face-to-face by antiparallel dimerization of GFP, resulting in the formation of bulbs. In plants expressing H+-PPase-mGFP, intravacuolar spherical structures with double membranes, which differed from bulbs in fluorescence intensity and intermembrane spacing, were still observed in peripheral endosperm, pistil epidermis and hypocotyls. Four-dimensional imaging revealed the dynamics of formation, transformation, and disappearance of intravacuolar spherical structures and transvacuolar strands in living cells. Visualization of H+-PPase-mGFP revealed intensive accumulation of the enzyme, not only in dividing and elongating cells but also in mesophyll, phloem, and nectary cells, which may have high sugar content. Dynamic morphological changes including transformation of vacuolar structures between transvacuolar strands, intravacuolar sheet-like structures, and intravacuolar spherical structures were also revealed. PMID:25118245

  14. Phosphorylation of native porcine olfactory binding proteins.

    PubMed

    Nagnan-Le Meillour, Patricia; Le Danvic, Chrystelle; Brimau, Fanny; Chemineau, Philippe; Michalski, Jean-Claude

    2009-07-01

    The identification of various isoforms of olfactory binding proteins is of major importance to elucidate their involvement in detection of pheromones and other odors. Here, we report the characterization of the phosphorylation of OBP (odorant binding protein) and Von Ebner's gland protein (VEG) from the pig, Sus scrofa. After labeling with specific antibodies raised against the three types of phosphorylation (Ser, Thr, Tyr), the phosphate-modified residues were mapped by using the beta-elimination followed by Michael addition of dithiothreitol (BEMAD) method. Eleven phosphorylation sites were localized in the pOBP sequence and nine sites in the VEG sequence. OBPs are secreted by Bowman's gland cells in the extracellular mucus lining the nasal cavity. After tracking the secretion pathway in the rough endoplasmic reticulum of these cells, we hypothesize that these proteins may be phosphorylated by ectokinases that remain to be characterized. The existence of such a regulatory mechanism theoretically increases the number of OBP variants, and it suggests a more specific role for OBPs in odorant coding than the one of odorant solubilizer and transporter.

  15. X-ray crystal structures of manganese(II)-reconstituted and native toluene/o-xylene monooxygenase hydroxylase reveal rotamer shifts in conserved residues and an enhanced view of the protein interior.

    PubMed

    McCormick, Michael S; Sazinsky, Matthew H; Condon, Karen L; Lippard, Stephen J

    2006-11-29

    We report the X-ray crystal structures of native and manganese(II)-reconstituted toluene/o-xylene monooxygenase hydroxylase (ToMOH) from Pseudomonas stutzeri OX1 to 1.85 and 2.20 A resolution, respectively. The structures reveal that reduction of the dimetallic active site is accompanied by a carboxylate shift and alteration of the coordination environment for dioxygen binding and activation. A rotamer shift in a strategically placed asparagine 202 accompanies dimetallic center reduction and is proposed to influence protein component interactions. This rotamer shift is conserved between ToMOH and the corresponding residue in methane monooxygenase hydroxylase (MMOH). Previously unidentified hydrophobic pockets similar to those present in MMOH are assigned.

  16. Chemical cross-linking and native mass spectrometry: A fruitful combination for structural biology

    PubMed Central

    Sinz, Andrea; Arlt, Christian; Chorev, Dror; Sharon, Michal

    2015-01-01

    Mass spectrometry (MS) is becoming increasingly popular in the field of structural biology for analyzing protein three-dimensional-structures and for mapping protein–protein interactions. In this review, the specific contributions of chemical crosslinking and native MS are outlined to reveal the structural features of proteins and protein assemblies. Both strategies are illustrated based on the examples of the tetrameric tumor suppressor protein p53 and multisubunit vinculin-Arp2/3 hybrid complexes. We describe the distinct advantages and limitations of each technique and highlight synergistic effects when both techniques are combined. Integrating both methods is especially useful for characterizing large protein assemblies and for capturing transient interactions. We also point out the future directions we foresee for a combination of in vivo crosslinking and native MS for structural investigation of intact protein assemblies. PMID:25970732

  17. Rapid Design of Knowledge-Based Scoring Potentials for Enrichment of Near-Native Geometries in Protein-Protein Docking

    PubMed Central

    Sasse, Alexander; de Vries, Sjoerd J.; Schindler, Christina E. M.; de Beauchêne, Isaure Chauvot

    2017-01-01

    Protein-protein docking protocols aim to predict the structures of protein-protein complexes based on the structure of individual partners. Docking protocols usually include several steps of sampling, clustering, refinement and re-scoring. The scoring step is one of the bottlenecks in the performance of many state-of-the-art protocols. The performance of scoring functions depends on the quality of the generated structures and its coupling to the sampling algorithm. A tool kit, GRADSCOPT (GRid Accelerated Directly SCoring OPTimizing), was designed to allow rapid development and optimization of different knowledge-based scoring potentials for specific objectives in protein-protein docking. Different atomistic and coarse-grained potentials can be created by a grid-accelerated directly scoring dependent Monte-Carlo annealing or by a linear regression optimization. We demonstrate that the scoring functions generated by our approach are similar to or even outperform state-of-the-art scoring functions for predicting near-native solutions. Of additional importance, we find that potentials specifically trained to identify the native bound complex perform rather poorly on identifying acceptable or medium quality (near-native) solutions. In contrast, atomistic long-range contact potentials can increase the average fraction of near-native poses by up to a factor 2.5 in the best scored 1% decoys (compared to existing scoring), emphasizing the need of specific docking potentials for different steps in the docking protocol. PMID:28118389

  18. Improved Peak Detection and Deconvolution of Native Electrospray Mass Spectra from Large Protein Complexes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lu, Jonathan; Trnka, Michael J.; Roh, Soung-Hun; Robinson, Philip J. J.; Shiau, Carrie; Fujimori, Danica Galonic; Chiu, Wah; Burlingame, Alma L.; Guan, Shenheng

    2015-12-01

    Native electrospray-ionization mass spectrometry (native MS) measures biomolecules under conditions that preserve most aspects of protein tertiary and quaternary structure, enabling direct characterization of large intact protein assemblies. However, native spectra derived from these assemblies are often partially obscured by low signal-to-noise as well as broad peak shapes because of residual solvation and adduction after the electrospray process. The wide peak widths together with the fact that sequential charge state series from highly charged ions are closely spaced means that native spectra containing multiple species often suffer from high degrees of peak overlap or else contain highly interleaved charge envelopes. This situation presents a challenge for peak detection, correct charge state and charge envelope assignment, and ultimately extraction of the relevant underlying mass values of the noncovalent assemblages being investigated. In this report, we describe a comprehensive algorithm developed for addressing peak detection, peak overlap, and charge state assignment in native mass spectra, called PeakSeeker. Overlapped peaks are detected by examination of the second derivative of the raw mass spectrum. Charge state distributions of the molecular species are determined by fitting linear combinations of charge envelopes to the overall experimental mass spectrum. This software is capable of deconvoluting heterogeneous, complex, and noisy native mass spectra of large protein assemblies as demonstrated by analysis of (1) synthetic mononucleosomes containing severely overlapping peaks, (2) an RNA polymerase II/α-amanitin complex with many closely interleaved ion signals, and (3) human TriC complex containing high levels of background noise.

  19. Identification of cooperative folding units in a set of native proteins.

    PubMed Central

    Wallqvist, A.; Smythers, G. W.; Covell, D. G.

    1997-01-01

    Cooperative unfolding penalties are calculated by statistically evaluating an ensemble of denatured states derived from native structures. The ensemble of denatured states is determined by dividing the native protein into short contiguous segments and defining all possible combinations of native, i.e., interacting, and non-native, i.e., non-interacting, segments. We use a novel knowledge-based scoring function, derived from a set of non-homologous proteins in the Protein Data Bank, to describe the interactions among residues. This procedure is used for the structural identification of cooperative folding cores for four globular proteins: bovine pancreatic trypsin inhibitor, horse heart cytochrome c, French bean plastocyanin, and staphylococcal nuclease. The theoretical folding units are shown to correspond to regions that exhibit enhanced stability against denaturation as determined from experimental hydrogen exchange protection factors. Using a sequence similarity score for related sequences, we show that, in addition to residues necessary for enzymatic function, those amino acids comprising structurally important folding cores are also preferentially conserved during evolution. This implies that the identified folding cores may be part of an array of fundamental structural folding units. PMID:9260276

  20. The emerging role of native mass spectrometry in characterizing the structure and dynamics of macromolecular complexes

    PubMed Central

    Boeri Erba, Elisabetta; Petosa, Carlo

    2015-01-01

    Mass spectrometry (MS) is a powerful tool for determining the mass of biomolecules with high accuracy and sensitivity. MS performed under so-called “native conditions” (native MS) can be used to determine the mass of biomolecules that associate noncovalently. Here we review the application of native MS to the study of protein−ligand interactions and its emerging role in elucidating the structure of macromolecular assemblies, including soluble and membrane protein complexes. Moreover, we discuss strategies aimed at determining the stoichiometry and topology of subunits by inducing partial dissociation of the holo-complex. We also survey recent developments in "native top-down MS", an approach based on Fourier Transform MS, whereby covalent bonds are broken without disrupting non-covalent interactions. Given recent progress, native MS is anticipated to play an increasingly important role for researchers interested in the structure of macromolecular complexes. PMID:25676284

  1. Native biomolecules in the gas phase? The case of green fluorescent protein.

    PubMed

    Frankevich, Vladimir; Barylyuk, Konstantin; Chingin, Konstantin; Nieckarz, Robert; Zenobi, Renato

    2013-04-02

    Green fluorescent protein (GFP) was ionized by native electrospray ionization and trapped for many seconds in high vacuum, allowing fluorescence emission to be measured as a probe of its biological function, to answer the question whether GFP exists in the native form in the gas phase or not. Although a narrow charge-state distribution, a collision cross-section very close to that expected for correctly folded GFP, and a large stability against dissociation all support a near-native gas-phase structure, no fluorescence emission was observed. The loss of the native form is attributed to the absence of residual water in the gas phase, which normally stabilizes the para-hydroxybenzylidene imidazolone chromophore of GFP.

  2. Supercharging Protein Complexes from Aqueous Solution Disrupts their Native Conformations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sterling, Harry J.; Kintzer, Alexander F.; Feld, Geoffrey K.; Cassou, Catherine A.; Krantz, Bryan A.; Williams, Evan R.

    2012-02-01

    The effects of aqueous solution supercharging on the solution- and gas-phase structures of two protein complexes were investigated using traveling-wave ion mobility-mass spectrometry (TWIMS-MS). Low initial concentrations of m-nitrobenzyl alcohol ( m-NBA) in the electrospray ionization (ESI) solution can effectively increase the charge of concanavalin A dimers and tetramers, but at higher m-NBA concentrations, the increases in charge are accompanied by solution-phase dissociation of the dimers and up to a ~22% increase in the collision cross section (CCS) of the tetramers. With just 0.8% m-NBA added to the ESI solution of a ~630 kDa anthrax toxin octamer complex, the average charge is increased by only ~4% compared with the "native" complex, but it is sufficiently destabilized so that extensive gas-phase fragmentation occurs in the relatively high pressure regions of the TWIMS device. Anthrax toxin complexes exist in either a prechannel or a transmembrane channel state. With m-NBA, the prechannel state of the complex has the same CCS/charge ratio in the gas phase as the transmembrane channel state of the same complex formed without m-NBA, yet undergoes extensive dissociation, indicating that destabilization from supercharging occurs in the ESI droplet prior to ion formation and is not a result of Coulombic destabilization in the gas phase as a result of higher charging. These results demonstrate that the supercharging of large protein complexes is the result of conformational changes induced by the reagents in the ESI droplets, where enrichment of the supercharging reagent during droplet evaporation occurs.

  3. Unique structural modulation of a non-native substrate by cochaperone DnaJ.

    PubMed

    Tiwari, Satyam; Kumar, Vignesh; Jayaraj, Gopal Gunanathan; Maiti, Souvik; Mapa, Koyeli

    2013-02-12

    The role of bacterial DnaJ protein as a cochaperone of DnaK is strongly appreciated. Although DnaJ unaccompanied by DnaK can bind unfolded as well as native substrate proteins, its role as an individual chaperone remains elusive. In this study, we demonstrate that DnaJ binds a model non-native substrate with a low nanomolar dissociation constant and, more importantly, modulates the structure of its non-native state. The structural modulation achieved by DnaJ is different compared to that achieved by the DnaK-DnaJ complex. The nature of structural modulation exerted by DnaJ is suggestive of a unique unfolding activity on the non-native substrate by the chaperone. Furthermore, we demonstrate that the zinc binding motif along with the C-terminal substrate binding domain of DnaJ is necessary and sufficient for binding and the subsequent binding-induced structural alterations of the non-native substrate. We hypothesize that this hitherto unknown structural alteration of non-native states by DnaJ might be important for its chaperoning activity by removing kinetic traps of the folding intermediates.

  4. Tannin-assisted aggregation of natively unfolded proteins

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zanchi, D.; Narayanan, T.; Hagenmuller, D.; Baron, A.; Guyot, S.; Cabane, B.; Bouhallab, S.

    2008-06-01

    Tannin-protein interactions are essentially physical: hydrophobic and hydrogen-bond-mediated. We explored the tannin-assisted protein aggregation on the case of β-casein, which is a natively unfolded protein known for its ability to form micellar aggregates. We used several tannins with specified length. Our SAXS results show that small tannins increase the number of proteins per micelle, but keeping their size constant. It leads to a tannin-assisted compactization of micelles. Larger tannins, with linear dimensions greater than the crown width of micelles, lead to the aggregation of micelles by a bridging effect. Experimental results can be understood within a model where tannins are treated as effective enhancers of hydrophobic attraction between specific sites in proteins.

  5. Comparative spectroscopic studies on drug binding characteristics and protein surface hydrophobicity of native and modified forms of bovine serum albumin: Possible relevance to change in protein structure/function upon non-enzymatic glycation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Khodarahmi, Reza; Karimi, Seyyed Arash; Ashrafi Kooshk, Mohammad Reza; Ghadami, Seyyed Abolghasem; Ghobadi, Sirous; Amani, Mojtaba

    2012-04-01

    The interaction between serum albumin (SA) and drugs has provided an interesting ground for understanding of drug effects, especially in drug distribution and drug-drug interaction on SA, in the case of multi-drug therapy. Determination of the impact of various factors on drug-protein interaction is especially important upon significant binding of drug to albumin. In the present study, the interaction of two drugs (furosemide and indomethacin) with native and modified albumins were investigated by using various spectroscopic methods. Fluorescence data indicated that 1:1 binding of drugs to bovine serum albumin (BSA) is associated with quenching of albumin intrinsic fluorescence. The Job's plot also confirmed that drug binds to BSA via mentioned stoichiometry. Analysis of the quenching and thermodynamic parameters indicated that intermolecular interactions between drug and albumin may change upon protein modification. The theoretical analyses also suggested some conformational changes of interacting side chains in subdomain IIA binding site (at the vicinity of W237), which were in good agreement with experimental data. Decrease of protein surface hydrophobicity (PSH) was also observed upon both albumin modification and drug binding.

  6. Comparative spectroscopic studies on drug binding characteristics and protein surface hydrophobicity of native and modified forms of bovine serum albumin: possible relevance to change in protein structure/function upon non-enzymatic glycation.

    PubMed

    Khodarahmi, Reza; Karimi, Seyyed Arash; Ashrafi Kooshk, Mohammad Reza; Ghadami, Seyyed Abolghasem; Ghobadi, Sirous; Amani, Mojtaba

    2012-04-01

    The interaction between serum albumin (SA) and drugs has provided an interesting ground for understanding of drug effects, especially in drug distribution and drug-drug interaction on SA, in the case of multi-drug therapy. Determination of the impact of various factors on drug-protein interaction is especially important upon significant binding of drug to albumin. In the present study, the interaction of two drugs (furosemide and indomethacin) with native and modified albumins were investigated by using various spectroscopic methods. Fluorescence data indicated that 1:1 binding of drugs to bovine serum albumin (BSA) is associated with quenching of albumin intrinsic fluorescence. The Job's plot also confirmed that drug binds to BSA via mentioned stoichiometry. Analysis of the quenching and thermodynamic parameters indicated that intermolecular interactions between drug and albumin may change upon protein modification. The theoretical analyses also suggested some conformational changes of interacting side chains in subdomain IIA binding site (at the vicinity of W237), which were in good agreement with experimental data. Decrease of protein surface hydrophobicity (PSH) was also observed upon both albumin modification and drug binding.

  7. Detection and analysis of protein-protein interactions of organellar and prokaryotic proteomes by blue native and colorless native gel electrophoresis.

    PubMed

    Krause, Frank; Seelert, Holger

    2008-11-01

    Native gels enable the analysis of protein complexes on a proteome-wide scale in a single experiment. The protocols described in this unit are based on separation of protein complexes by blue native polyacrylamide electrophoresis (BN-PAGE), the most versatile native gel system, and the closely related milder colorless native PAGE (CN-PAGE). Both BN-PAGE and CN-PAGE are described on analytical to preparative scales. In addition, methods for subsequent analysis of protein complexes are given, including electroelution from native gels as well as denaturing and native two-dimensional PAGE. Finally, the removal of Coomassie dye from electroeluted proteins is detailed along with a discussion of fundamental considerations for the solubilization of membrane protein complexes from various biological samples, which are exemplified for mitochondria, chloroplasts (thylakoids), and cyanobacteria.

  8. Native tandem and ion mobility mass spectrometry highlight structural and modular similarities in clustered-regularly-interspaced shot-palindromic-repeats (CRISPR)-associated protein complexes from Escherichia coli and Pseudomonas aeruginosa.

    PubMed

    van Duijn, Esther; Barbu, Ioana M; Barendregt, Arjan; Jore, Matthijs M; Wiedenheft, Blake; Lundgren, Magnus; Westra, Edze R; Brouns, Stan J J; Doudna, Jennifer A; van der Oost, John; Heck, Albert J R

    2012-11-01

    The CRISPR/Cas (clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeats/CRISPR-associated genes) immune system of bacteria and archaea provides acquired resistance against viruses and plasmids, by a strategy analogous to RNA-interference. Key components of the defense system are ribonucleoprotein complexes, the composition of which appears highly variable in different CRISPR/Cas subtypes. Previous studies combined mass spectrometry, electron microscopy, and small angle x-ray scattering to demonstrate that the E. coli Cascade complex (405 kDa) and the P. aeruginosa Csy-complex (350 kDa) are similar in that they share a central spiral-shaped hexameric structure, flanked by associating proteins and one CRISPR RNA. Recently, a cryo-electron microscopy structure of Cascade revealed that the CRISPR RNA molecule resides in a groove of the hexameric backbone. For both complexes we here describe the use of native mass spectrometry in combination with ion mobility mass spectrometry to assign a stable core surrounded by more loosely associated modules. Via computational modeling subcomplex structures were proposed that relate to the experimental IMMS data. Despite the absence of obvious sequence homology between several subunits, detailed analysis of sub-complexes strongly suggests analogy between subunits of the two complexes. Probing the specific association of E. coli Cascade/crRNA to its complementary DNA target reveals a conformational change. All together these findings provide relevant new information about the potential assembly process of the two CRISPR-associated complexes.

  9. Native globular actin has a thermodynamically unstable quasi-stationary structure with elements of intrinsic disorder.

    PubMed

    Kuznetsova, Irina M; Povarova, Olga I; Uversky, Vladimir N; Turoverov, Konstantin K

    2016-02-01

    The native form of globular actin, G-actin, is formed in vivo as a result of complex post-translational folding processes that require ATP energy expenditure and are assisted by the 70 kDa heat shock protein, prefoldin and chaperonin containing TCP-1. G-actin is stabilized by the binding of one ATP molecule and one Ca(2+) ion (or Mg(2+) in vivo). Chemical denaturants, heating or Ca(2+) removal transform native actin (N) into 'inactivated actin' (I), a compact oligomer comprising 14-16 subunits. Viscogenic and crowding agents slow this process but do not stop it. The lack of calcium in the solution accelerates the spontaneous N → I transition. Thus, native G-actin has a kinetically stable (as a result of the high free energy barrier between the N and I states) but thermodynamically unstable structure, which, in the absence of Ca(2+) or other bivalent metal ions, spontaneously converts to the thermodynamically stable I state. It was noted that native actin has much in common with intrinsically disordered proteins: it has functionally important disordered regions; it is constantly in complex with one of its numerous partners; and it plays key roles in many cellular processes, in a manner similar to disordered hub proteins. By analyzing actin folding in vivo and unfolding in vitro, we advanced the hypothesis that proteins in a native state may have a thermodynamically unstable quasi-stationary structure. The kinetically stable native state of these proteins appears forcibly under the influence of intracellular folding machinery. The denaturation of such proteins is always irreversible because the inactivated state, for which the structure is determined by the amino acid sequence of a protein, comprises the thermodynamically stable state under physiological conditions.

  10. Proton-detected solid-state NMR spectroscopy of a zinc diffusion facilitator protein in native nanodiscs

    PubMed Central

    Bersch, Beate; Dörr, Jonas M.; Hessel, Audrey; Killian, J. Antoinette; Schanda, Paul

    2017-01-01

    The structure, dynamics and function of membrane proteins are intimately linked to the properties of the membrane environment in which the proteins are embedded. For structural and biophysical characterization, membrane proteins generally need to be extracted from the membrane, and reconstituted in a suitable membrane-mimicking environment. Ensuring functional and structural integrity in these environments is often a major concern. The styrene/maleic acid co-polymer has recently been shown to be able to extract lipid/membrane protein patches directly from native membranes, forming nanosize discoidal proteolipid particles, also referred to as native nanodiscs. Here we show, for the first time, that high-resolution solid-state NMR spectra can be obtained from an integral membrane protein in native nanodiscs, as exemplified with the 2 x 34 kDa-large bacterial cation diffusion facilitator CzcD from Cupriavidus metallidurans CH34. PMID:28128538

  11. Secondary structure determines protein topology

    PubMed Central

    Fleming, Patrick J.; Gong, Haipeng; Rose, George D.

    2006-01-01

    Using a test set of 13 small, compact proteins, we demonstrate that a remarkably simple protocol can capture native topology from secondary structure information alone, in the absence of long-range interactions. It has been a long-standing open question whether such information is sufficient to determine a protein's fold. Indeed, even the far simpler problem of reconstructing the three-dimensional structure of a protein from its exact backbone torsion angles has remained a difficult challenge owing to the small, but cumulative, deviations from ideality in backbone planarity, which, if ignored, cause large errors in structure. As a familiar example, a small change in an elbow angle causes a large displacement at the end of your arm; the longer the arm, the larger the displacement. Here, correct secondary structure assignments (α-helix, β-strand, β-turn, polyproline II, coil) were used to constrain polypeptide backbone chains devoid of side chains, and the most stable folded conformations were determined, using Monte Carlo simulation. Just three terms were used to assess stability: molecular compaction, steric exclusion, and hydrogen bonding. For nine of the 13 proteins, this protocol restricts the main chain to a surprisingly small number of energetically favorable topologies, with the native one prominent among them. PMID:16823044

  12. Native top-down mass spectrometry for the structural characterization of human hemoglobin

    SciTech Connect

    Zhang, Jiang; Malmirchegini, G. Reza; Clubb, Robert T.; Loo, Joseph A.

    2015-06-09

    Native mass spectrometry (MS) has become an invaluable tool for the characterization of proteins and non-covalent protein complexes under near physiological solution conditions. Here we report the structural characterization of human hemoglobin (Hb), a 64 kDa oxygen-transporting protein complex, by high resolution native top-down mass spectrometry using electrospray ionization (ESI) and a 15-Tesla Fourier transform ion cyclotron resonance (FTICR) mass spectrometer. Native MS preserves the non-covalent interactions between the globin subunits, and electron capture dissociation (ECD) produces fragments directly from the intact Hb complex without dissociating the subunits. Using activated ion ECD, we observe the gradual unfolding process of the Hb complex in the gas phase. Without protein ion activation, the native Hb shows very limited ECD fragmentation from the N-termini, suggesting a tightly packed structure of the native complex and therefore low fragmentation efficiency. Precursor ion activation allows steady increase of N-terminal fragment ions, while the C-terminal fragments remain limited (38 c ions and 4 z ions on the α chain; 36 c ions and 2 z ions on the β chain). This ECD fragmentation pattern suggests that upon activation, the Hb complex starts to unfold from the N-termini of both subunits, whereas the C-terminal regions and therefore the potential regions involved in the subunit binding interactions remain intact. ECD-MS of the Hb dimer show similar fragmentation patterns as the Hb tetramer, providing further evidence for the hypothesized unfolding process of the Hb complex in the gas phase. Native top-down ECD-MS allows efficient probing of the Hb complex structure and the subunit binding interactions in the gas phase. Finally, it may provide a fast and effective means to probe the structure of novel protein complexes that are intractable to traditional structural characterization tools.

  13. Native top-down mass spectrometry for the structural characterization of human hemoglobin

    DOE PAGES

    Zhang, Jiang; Malmirchegini, G. Reza; Clubb, Robert T.; ...

    2015-06-09

    Native mass spectrometry (MS) has become an invaluable tool for the characterization of proteins and non-covalent protein complexes under near physiological solution conditions. Here we report the structural characterization of human hemoglobin (Hb), a 64 kDa oxygen-transporting protein complex, by high resolution native top-down mass spectrometry using electrospray ionization (ESI) and a 15-Tesla Fourier transform ion cyclotron resonance (FTICR) mass spectrometer. Native MS preserves the non-covalent interactions between the globin subunits, and electron capture dissociation (ECD) produces fragments directly from the intact Hb complex without dissociating the subunits. Using activated ion ECD, we observe the gradual unfolding process of themore » Hb complex in the gas phase. Without protein ion activation, the native Hb shows very limited ECD fragmentation from the N-termini, suggesting a tightly packed structure of the native complex and therefore low fragmentation efficiency. Precursor ion activation allows steady increase of N-terminal fragment ions, while the C-terminal fragments remain limited (38 c ions and 4 z ions on the α chain; 36 c ions and 2 z ions on the β chain). This ECD fragmentation pattern suggests that upon activation, the Hb complex starts to unfold from the N-termini of both subunits, whereas the C-terminal regions and therefore the potential regions involved in the subunit binding interactions remain intact. ECD-MS of the Hb dimer show similar fragmentation patterns as the Hb tetramer, providing further evidence for the hypothesized unfolding process of the Hb complex in the gas phase. Native top-down ECD-MS allows efficient probing of the Hb complex structure and the subunit binding interactions in the gas phase. Finally, it may provide a fast and effective means to probe the structure of novel protein complexes that are intractable to traditional structural characterization tools.« less

  14. Insights into the molecular mechanism of protein native-like aggregation upon glycation.

    PubMed

    Oliveira, Luis M A; Gomes, Ricardo A; Yang, Dennis; Dennison, Sarah R; Família, Carlos; Lages, Ana; Coelho, Ana V; Murphy, Regina M; Phoenix, David A; Quintas, Alexandre

    2013-06-01

    Several human neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease and Familial Amyloidotic Polyneuropathy, have long been associated with, structural and functional changes in disease related proteins leading to aggregation into amyloid fibrils. Such changes can be triggered by post-translational modifications. Methylglyoxal modifications have been shown to induce the formation of small and stable native-like aggregates in the case of the amyloidogenic proteins insulin and α-synuclein. However, the fundamental biophysical mechanism underlying such methylglyoxal-induced protein aggregation is not yet fully understood. In this work cytochrome c (Cyt c) was used as a model protein for the characterization of specific glycation targets and to study their impact on protein structure, stability, and ability to form native-like aggregates. Our results show that methylglyoxal covalently modifies Cyt c at a single residue and induces early conformational changes that lead to the formation of native-like aggregates. Furthermore, partially unfolded species are formed, but do not seem to be implicated in the aggregation process. This shows a clear difference from the amyloid fibril mechanisms which involve partially or totally unfolded intermediates. Equilibrium-unfolding experiments show that glycation strongly decreases Cyt c conformational stability, which is balanced with an increase of conformational stability upon aggregation. Data collected from analytical and spectroscopic techniques, along with kinetic analysis based on least-squares parameter fitting and statistical model discrimination are used to help to understand the driving force underlying glycation-induced native-like aggregation, and enable the proposal of a comprehensive thermodynamic and kinetic model for native-like aggregation of methylglyoxal glycated Cyt c.

  15. Protein's native state stability in a chemically induced denaturation mechanism.

    PubMed

    Olivares-Quiroz, L; Garcia-Colin, L S

    2007-05-21

    In this work, we present a generalization of Zwanzig's protein unfolding analysis [Zwanzig, R., 1997. Two-state models of protein folding kinetics. Proc. Natl Acad. Sci. USA 94, 148-150; Zwanzig, R., 1995. Simple model of protein folding kinetics. Proc. Natl Acad. Sci. USA 92, 9801], in order to calculate the free energy change Delta(N)(D)F between the protein's native state N and its unfolded state D in a chemically induced denaturation. This Extended Zwanzig Model (EZM) is both based on an equilibrium statistical mechanics approach and the inclusion of experimental denaturation curves. It enables us to construct a suitable partition function Z and to derive an analytical formula for Delta(N)(D)F in terms of the number K of residues of the macromolecule, the average number nu of accessible states for each single amino acid and the concentration C(1/2) where the midpoint of the N<==>D transition occurs. The results of the EZM for proteins where chemical denaturation follows a sigmoidal-type profile, as it occurs for the case of the T70N human variant of lysozyme (PDB code: T70N) [Esposito, G., et al., 2003. J. Biol. Chem. 278, 25910-25918], can be splitted into two lines. First, EZM shows that for sigmoidal denaturation profiles, the internal degrees of freedom of the chain play an outstanding role in the stability of the native state. On the other hand, that under certain conditions DeltaF can be written as a quadratic polynomial on concentration C(1/2), i.e., DeltaF approximately aC(1/2)(2)+bC(1/2)+c, where a,b,c are constant coefficients directly linked to protein's size K and the averaged number of non-native conformations nu. Such functional form for DeltaF has been widely known to fit experimental measures in chemically induced protein denaturation [Yagi, M., et al., 2003. J. Biol. Chem. 278, 47009-47015; Asgeirsson, B., Guojonsdottir, K., 2006. Biochim. Biophys. Acta 1764, 190-198; Sharma, S., et al., 2006. Protein Pept. Lett. 13(4), 323-329; Salem, M., et

  16. Non-native structure appears in microseconds during the folding of E. coli RNase H.

    PubMed

    Rosen, Laura E; Kathuria, Sagar V; Matthews, C Robert; Bilsel, Osman; Marqusee, Susan

    2015-01-30

    The folding pathway of Escherichia coli RNase H is one of the best experimentally characterized for any protein. In spite of this, spectroscopic studies have never captured the earliest events. Using continuous-flow microfluidic mixing, we have now observed the first several milliseconds of folding by monitoring the tryptophan fluorescence lifetime (60 μs dead time). Two folding intermediates are observed, the second of which is the previously characterized I(core) millisecond intermediate. The new earlier intermediate is likely on-pathway and appears to have long-range non-native structure, providing a rare example of such non-native structure formation in a folding pathway. The tryptophan fluorescence lifetimes also suggest a deviation from native packing in the second intermediate, I(core). Similar results from a fragment of RNase H demonstrate that only half of the protein is significantly involved in this early structure formation. These studies give us a view of the formation of tertiary structure on the folding pathway, which complements previous hydrogen-exchange studies that monitored only secondary structure and observed sequential native structure formation. Our results provide detailed folding information on both a timescale and a size-scale accessible to all-atom molecular dynamics simulations of protein folding.

  17. Native-state interconversion of a metamorphic protein requires global unfolding.

    PubMed

    Tyler, Robert C; Murray, Nathan J; Peterson, Francis C; Volkman, Brian F

    2011-08-23

    Lymphotactin (Ltn) is a unique chemokine that under physiological solution conditions displays large-scale structural heterogeneity, defining a new category of "metamorphic proteins". Previous Ltn studies have indicated that each form is required for proper function, but the mechanism of interconversion remains unknown. Here we have investigated the temperature dependence of kinetic rates associated with interconversion and unfolding by stopped-flow fluorescence to determine transition-state free energies. Comparisons of derived thermodynamic parameters revealed striking similarities between interconversion and protein unfolding. We conclude that Ltn native-state rearrangement proceeds by way of a large-scale unfolding process rather than a unique intermediate structure.

  18. Desalting protein ions in native mass spectrometry using supercharging reagents.

    PubMed

    Cassou, Catherine A; Williams, Evan R

    2014-10-07

    Effects of the supercharging reagents m-NBA and sulfolane on sodium ion adduction to protein ions formed using native mass spectrometry were investigated. There is extensive sodium adduction on protein ions formed by electrospray ionization from aqueous solutions containing millimolar concentrations of NaCl, which can lower sensitivity by distributing the signal of a given charge state over multiple adducted ions and can reduce mass measuring accuracy for large proteins and non-covalent complexes for which individual adducts cannot be resolved. The average number of sodium ions adducted to the most abundant ion formed from ten small (8.6-29 kDa) proteins for which adducts can be resolved is reduced by 58% or 80% on average, respectively, when 1.5% m-NBA or 2.5% sulfolane are added to aqueous solutions containing sodium compared to without the supercharging reagent. Sulfolane is more effective than m-NBA at reducing sodium ion adduction and at preserving non-covalent protein-ligand and protein-protein interactions. Desalting with 2.5% sulfolane enables detection of several glycosylated forms of 79.7 kDa holo-transferrin and NADH bound to the 146 kDa homotetramer LDH, which are otherwise unresolved due to peak broadening from extensive sodium adduction. Although sulfolane is more effective than m-NBA at protein ion desalting, m-NBA reduces salt clusters at high m/z and can increase the signal-to-noise ratios of protein ions by reducing chemical noise. Desalting is likely a result of these supercharging reagents binding sodium ions in solution, thereby reducing the sodium available to adduct to protein ions.

  19. Structural and spectroscopic studies of the native hemocyanin from Maia squinado and its structural subunits

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dolashka-Angelova, Pavlina; Hristova, Rumijana; Schuetz, Juergen; Stoeva, Stanka; Schwarz, Heinz; Voelter, Wolfgang

    2000-09-01

    The dodecameric hemocyanin of the crab Maia squinado contains five major electrophoretically separable polypeptide chains (structural subunits) which have been purified by FPLC ion exchange chromatography. The various proteins have been characterized by fluorescence spectroscopy, combined with fluorescence quenching studies, using acrylamide, caesium chloride and potassium iodide as tryptophan quenchers. The results show that the tryptophyl side chains of dodecameric Hc are deeply buried in hydrophobic regions of the hemocyanin aggregates and the quenching efficiency values for the native Hc in comparison with those from the constituent subunits are two to four times less. The conformational stabilities of the native dodecameric aggregate and its isolated structural subunits towards various denaturants (pH, temperature, guanidinium hydrochloride) indicate that the quaternary structure is stabilized by hydrophilic and polar forces, whereby, both, the oxy- and apo-forms of the protein have been considered. The critical temperatures for the structural subunits, Tc, determined by fluorescence spectroscopy, are in the region of 50-60°C, coinciding with the melting temperatures, Tm, determined by CD spectroscopy. The free energy of stabilization in water, Δ GDH 2O , toward guanidinium hydrochloride is about two times higher for the dodecamer as compared to the isolated subunits. These studies reveal that oligomerization between functional subunits has a stabilizing effect on the whole molecule and differences in the primary structures result in different stabilities of the subunits.

  20. Tom40 protein import channel binds to non-native proteins and prevents their aggregation.

    PubMed

    Esaki, Masatoshi; Kanamori, Takashi; Nishikawa, Shuh-ichi; Shin, Injae; Schultz, Peter G; Endo, Toshiya

    2003-12-01

    Mitochondria contain the translocator of the outer mitochondrial membrane (TOM) for protein entry into the organelle, and its subunit Tom40 forms a protein-conducting channel. Here we report the role of Tom40 in protein translocation across the membrane. The site-specific photocrosslinking experiment revealed that translocating unfolded or loosely folded precursor segments of up to 90 residues can be associated with Tom40. Purified Tom40 bound to non-native proteins and suppressed their aggregation when they are prone to aggregate. A denatured protein bound to the Tom40 channel blocked the protein import into mitochondria. These results indicate that, in contrast to the nonstick tunnel of the ribosome for polypeptide exit, the Tom40 channel offers an optimized environment to translocating non-native precursor proteins by preventing their aggregation.

  1. Protein complex analysis of native brain potassium channels by proteomics.

    PubMed

    Sandoz, Guillaume; Lesage, Florian

    2008-01-01

    TREK potassium channels belong to a family of channel subunits with two-pore domains (K(2P)). TREK1 knockout mice display impaired polyunsaturated fatty acid-mediated protection against brain ischemia, reduced sensitivity to volatile anesthetics, resistance to depression and altered perception of pain. Recently, we isolated native TREK1 channels from mouse brain and identified their specific components by mass spectrometry. Among the identified partners, the A-Kinase Anchoring Protein AKAP150 binds to a regulatory domain of TREK1 and acts as a molecular switch. It transforms low activity, outwardly rectifying TREK1 currents into robust leak conductances resistant to stimulation by arachidonic acid, membrane stretch and acidification. Inhibition of the TREK1/AKAP150 channel by Gs-coupled receptors is as extensive as for TREK1 alone (but faster) whereas inhibition of TREK1/AKAP150 by Gq-coupled receptors is reduced. Furthermore, the association of AKAP150 with TREK1 channels integrates them into postsynaptic scaffolds where G protein-coupled membrane receptors and channels dock simultaneously. This chapter describes the proteomic approach used to study the composition of native TREK1 channels and point out its advantages and limitations over more classical methods (two-hybrid screenings in the yeast and bacteria or GST-pull down).

  2. A genetic algorithm that seeks native states of peptides and proteins.

    PubMed Central

    Sun, S

    1995-01-01

    We describe a computer algorithm to predict native structures of proteins and peptides from their primary sequences, their known native radii of gyration, and their known disulfide bonding patterns, starting from random conformations. Proteins are represented as simplified real-space main chains with single-bead side chains. Nonlocal interactions are taken from structural database-derived statistical potentials, as in an earlier treatment. Local interactions are taken from simulations of (phi, psi) energy surfaces for each amino acid generated using the Biosym Discover program. Conformational searching is done by a genetic algorithm-based method. Reasonable structures are obtained for melittin (a 26-mer), avian pancreatic polypeptide inhibitor (a 36-mer), crambin (a 46-mer), apamin (an 18-mer), tachyplesin (a 17-mer), C-peptide of ribonuclease A (a 13-mer), and four different designed helical peptides. A hydrogen bond interaction was tested and found to be generally unnecessary for helical peptides, but it helps fold some sheet regions in these structures. For the few longer chains we tested, the method appears not to converge. In those cases, it appears to recover native-like secondary structures, but gets incorrect tertiary folds. PMID:8527647

  3. Differences in ecological structure, function, and native species abundance between native and invaded Hawaiian streams.

    PubMed

    Holitzki, Tara M; MacKenzie, Richard A; Wiegner, Tracy N; McDermid, Karla J

    2013-09-01

    Poeciliids, one of the most invasive species worldwide, are found on almost every continent and have been identified as an "invasive species of concern" in the United States, New Zealand, and Australia. Despite their global prevalence, few studies have quantified their impacts on tropical stream ecosystem structure, function, and biodiversity. Utilizing Hawaiian streams as model ecosystems, we documented how ecological structure, function, and native species abundance differed between poeciliid-free and poeciliid-invaded tropical streams. Stream nutrient yields, benthic biofilm biomass, densities of macroinvertebrates and fish, and community structures of benthic algae, macroinvertebrates, and fish were compared between streams with and without established poeciliid populations on the island of Hawai'i, Hawaii, USA. Sum nitrate (sigmaNO3(-) = NO3(-) + NO2(-)), total nitrogen, and total organic carbon yields were eight times, six times, and five times higher, respectively, in poeciliid streams than in poeciliid-free streams. Benthic biofilm ash-free dry mass was 1.5x higher in poeciliid streams than in poeciliid-free streams. Percentage contributions of chironomids and hydroptilid caddisflies to macroinvertebrate densities were lower in poeciliid streams compared to poeciliid-free streams, while percentage contributions of Cheumatopsyche analis caddisflies, Dugesia sp. flatworms, and oligochaetes were higher. Additionally, mean densities of native gobies were two times lower in poeciliid streams than in poeciliid-free ones, with poeciliid densities being approximately eight times higher than native fish densities. Our results, coupled with the wide distribution of invasive poeciliids across Hawaii and elsewhere in the tropics, suggest that poeciliids may negatively impact the ecosystem structure, function, and native species abundance of tropical streams they invade. This underscores the need for increased public awareness to prevent future introductions and for

  4. Specific non-local interactions are not necessary for recovering native protein dynamics.

    PubMed

    Dasgupta, Bhaskar; Kasahara, Kota; Kamiya, Narutoshi; Nakamura, Haruki; Kinjo, Akira R

    2014-01-01

    The elastic network model (ENM) is a widely used method to study native protein dynamics by normal mode analysis (NMA). In ENM we need information about all pairwise distances, and the distance between contacting atoms is restrained to the native value. Therefore ENM requires O(N2) information to realize its dynamics for a protein consisting of N amino acid residues. To see if (or to what extent) such a large amount of specific structural information is required to realize native protein dynamics, here we introduce a novel model based on only O(N) restraints. This model, named the 'contact number diffusion' model (CND), includes specific distance restraints for only local (along the amino acid sequence) atom pairs, and semi-specific non-local restraints imposed on each atom, rather than atom pairs. The semi-specific non-local restraints are defined in terms of the non-local contact numbers of atoms. The CND model exhibits the dynamic characteristics comparable to ENM and more correlated with the explicit-solvent molecular dynamics simulation than ENM. Moreover, unrealistic surface fluctuations often observed in ENM were suppressed in CND. On the other hand, in some ligand-bound structures CND showed larger fluctuations of buried protein atoms interacting with the ligand compared to ENM. In addition, fluctuations from CND and ENM show comparable correlations with the experimental B-factor. Although there are some indications of the importance of some specific non-local interactions, the semi-specific non-local interactions are mostly sufficient for reproducing the native protein dynamics.

  5. New supercharging reagents produce highly charged protein ions in native mass spectrometry.

    PubMed

    Going, Catherine C; Xia, Zijie; Williams, Evan R

    2015-11-07

    The effectiveness of two new supercharging reagents for producing highly charged ions by electrospray ionization (ESI) from aqueous solutions in which proteins have native structures and reactivities were investigated. In aqueous solution, 2-thiophenone and 4-hydroxymethyl-1,3-dioxolan-2-one (HD) at a concentration of 2% by volume can increase the average charge of cytochrome c and myoglobin by up to 163%, resulting in even higher charge states than those that are produced from water/methanol/acid solutions in which these proteins are denatured. The greatest extent of supercharging occurs in pure water, but these supercharging reagents are also highly effective in aqueous solutions containing 200 mM ammonium acetate buffer commonly used in native mass spectrometry (MS). These reagents are less effective supercharging reagents than m-nitrobenzyl alcohol (m-NBA) and propylene carbonate (PC) when ions are formed from water/methanol/acid. The extent to which loss of the heme group from myoglobin occurs is related to the extent of supercharging. Results from guanidine melts of cytochrome c monitored with tryptophan fluorescence show that the supercharging reagents PC, sulfolane and HD are effective chemical denaturants in solution. These results provide additional evidence for the role of protein structural changes in the electrospray droplet as the primary mechanism for supercharging with these reagents in native MS. These results also demonstrate that for at least some proteins, the formation of highly charged ions from native MS is no longer a significant barrier for obtaining structural information using conventional tandem MS methods.

  6. Variation in the Helical Structure of Native Collagen

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2014-02-24

    0704-0188 3. DATES COVERED (From - To) - UU UU UU UU Approved for public release; distribution is unlimited. Variation in the Helical Structure of...2211 collagen, molecular structure, variability , xray diffraction REPORT DOCUMENTATION PAGE 11. SPONSOR/MONITOR’S REPORT NUMBER(S) 10. SPONSOR...Chicago, IL 60616 -3793 ABSTRACT Variation in the Helical Structure of Native Collagen Report Title Article About the Authors Metrics Comments

  7. Determining Membrane Protein-Lipid Binding Thermodynamics Using Native Mass Spectrometry.

    PubMed

    Cong, Xiao; Liu, Yang; Liu, Wen; Liang, Xiaowen; Russell, David H; Laganowsky, Arthur

    2016-04-06

    Membrane proteins are embedded in the biological membrane where the chemically diverse lipid environment can modulate their structure and function. However, the thermodynamics governing the molecular recognition and interaction of lipids with membrane proteins is poorly understood. Here, we report a method using native mass spectrometry (MS), to determine thermodynamics of individual ligand binding events to proteins. Unlike conventional methods, native MS can resolve individual ligand binding events and, coupled with an apparatus to control the temperature, determine binding thermodynamic parameters, such as for protein-lipid interactions. We validated our approach using three soluble protein-ligand systems (maltose binding protein, lysozyme, and nitrogen regulatory protein) and obtained similar results to those using isothermal titration calorimetry and surface plasmon resonance. We also determined for the first time the thermodynamics of individual lipid binding to the ammonia channel (AmtB), an integral membrane protein from Escherichia coli. Remarkably, we observed distinct thermodynamic signatures for the binding of different lipids and entropy-enthalpy compensation for binding lipids of variable chain length. Additionally, using a mutant form of AmtB that abolishes a specific phosphatidylglycerol (PG) binding site, we observed distinct changes in the thermodynamic signatures for binding PG, implying these signatures can identify key residues involved in specific lipid binding and potentially differentiate between specific lipid binding sites.

  8. Protein promiscuity: drug resistance and native functions--HIV-1 case.

    PubMed

    Fernández, Ariel; Tawfik, Dan S; Berkhout, Ben; Sanders, Rogier; Kloczkowski, Andrzej; Sen, Taner; Jernigan, Bob

    2005-06-01

    The association of a drug with its target protein has the effect of blocking the protein activity and is termed a promiscuous function to distinguish from the protein's native function (Tawfik and associates, Nat. Genet. 37, 73-6, 2005). Obviously, a protein has not evolved naturally for drug association or drug resistance. Promiscuous protein functions exhibit unique traits of evolutionary adaptability, or evolvability, which is dependent on the induction of novel phenotypic traits by a small number of mutations. These mutations might have small effects on native functions, but large effects on promiscuous function; for example, an evolving protein could become increasingly drug resistant while maintaining its original function. Ariel Fernandez, in his opinion piece, notes that drug-binding "promiscuity" can hardly be dissociated from native functions; a dominant approach to drug discovery is the protein-native-substrate transition-state mimetic strategy. Thus, man-made ligands (e.g. drugs) have been successfully crafted to restrain enzymatic activity by focusing on the very same structural features that determine the native function. Using the successful inhibition of HIV-1 protease as an example, Fernandez illustrates how drug designers have employed naturally evolved features of the protein to suppress its activity. Based on these arguments, he dismisses the notion that drug binding is quintessentially promiscuous, even though in principle, proteins did not evolve to associate with man made ligands. In short, Fernandez argues that there may not be separate protein domains that one could term promiscuous domains. While acknowledging that drugs may bind promiscuously or in a native-like manner a la Fernandez, Tawfik maintains the role of evolutionary adaptation, even when a drug binds native-like. In the case of HIV-1 protease, drugs bind natively, and the initial onset of mutations results in drug resistance in addition to a dramatic decline in enzymatic

  9. Sucralose Destabilization of Protein Structure.

    PubMed

    Chen, Lee; Shukla, Nimesh; Cho, Inha; Cohn, Erin; Taylor, Erika A; Othon, Christina M

    2015-04-16

    Sucralose is a commonly employed artificial sweetener that behaves very differently than its natural disaccharide counterpart, sucrose, in terms of its interaction with biomolecules. The presence of sucralose in solution is found to destabilize the native structure of two model protein systems: the globular protein bovine serum albumin and an enzyme staphylococcal nuclease. The melting temperature of these proteins decreases as a linear function of sucralose concentration. We correlate this destabilization to the increased polarity of the molecule. The strongly polar nature is manifested as a large dielectric friction exerted on the excited-state rotational diffusion of tryptophan using time-resolved fluorescence anisotropy. Tryptophan exhibits rotational diffusion proportional to the measured bulk viscosity for sucrose solutions over a wide range of concentrations, consistent with a Stokes-Einstein model. For sucralose solutions, however, the diffusion is dependent on the concentration, strongly diverging from the viscosity predictions, and results in heterogeneous rotational diffusion.

  10. The preaggregated state of an amyloidogenic protein: Hydrostatic pressure converts native transthyretin into the amyloidogenic state

    PubMed Central

    Ferrão-Gonzales, Astria D.; Souto, Sandro O.; Silva, Jerson L.; Foguel, Débora

    2000-01-01

    Protein misfolding and aggregation cause several diseases, by mechanisms that are poorly understood. The formation of amyloid aggregates is the hallmark of most of these diseases. Here, the properties and formation of amyloidogenic intermediates of transthyretin (TTR) were investigated by the use of hydrostatic pressure and spectroscopic techniques. Native TTR tetramers (T4) were denatured by high pressure into a conformation that exposes tryptophan residues to the aqueous environment. This conformation was able to bind the hydrophobic probe bis-(8-anilinonaphthalene-1-sulfonate), indicating persistence of elements of secondary and tertiary structure. Lowering the temperature facilitated the pressure-induced denaturation of TTR, which suggests an important role of entropy in stabilizing the native protein. Gel filtration chromatography showed that after a cycle of compression-decompression at 1°C, the main species present was a tetramer, with a small population of monomers. This tetramer, designated T4*, had a non-native conformation: it bound more bis-(8-anilinonaphthalene-1-sulfonate) than native T4, was less stable under pressure, and on decompression formed aggregates under mild acidic conditions (pH 5–5.6). Our data show that hydrostatic pressure converts native tetramers of TTR into an altered state that shares properties with a previously described amyloidogenic intermediate, and it may be an intermediate that lies on the aggregation pathway. This “preaggregated” state, which we call T4*, provides insight into the question of how a correctly folded protein may degenerate into the aggregation pathway in amyloidogenic diseases. PMID:10841549

  11. Genetically Encoded Spin Labels for In Vitro and In-Cell EPR Studies of Native Proteins.

    PubMed

    Schmidt, M J; Fedoseev, A; Summerer, D; Drescher, M

    2015-01-01

    Electron paramagnetic resonance (EPR) spectroscopy in combination with site-directed spin labeling (SDSL) is a powerful approach to study the structure, dynamics, and interactions of proteins. The genetic encoding of the noncanonical amino acid spin-labeled lysine 1 (SLK-1) eliminates the need for any chemical labeling steps in SDSL-EPR studies and enables the investigation of native, endogenous proteins with minimal structural perturbation, and without the need to create unique reactive sites for chemical labeling. We report detailed experimental procedures for the efficient synthesis of SLK-1, the expression and purification of SLK-1-containing proteins under conditions that ensure maximal integrity of the nitroxide radical moiety, and procedures for intramolecular EPR distance measurements in proteins by double electron-electron resonance.

  12. Structural Alphabets for Protein Structure Classification: a Comparison Study

    PubMed Central

    Le, Quan; Pollastri, Gianluca; Koehl, Patrice

    2009-01-01

    Finding structural similarities between proteins often helps revealing shared functionality which otherwise might not be detected by native sequence information alone. Such similarity is usually detected and quantified by protein structure alignment. Determining the optimal alignment between two protein structures remains however a hard problem. An alternative approach is to approximate each protein 3D structure using a sequence of motifs derived from a structural alphabet. Using this approach, structure comparison is performed by comparing the corresponding motif sequences, or structural sequences. In this paper, we measure the performance of such alphabets in the context of the protein structure classification problem. We consider both local and global structural sequences. Each letter of a local structural sequence corresponds to the best matching fragment to the corresponding local segment of the protein structure. The global structural sequence is designed to generate the best possible complete chain that matches the full protein structure. We use an alphabet of 20 letters, corresponding to a library of 20 motifs or protein fragments of size 4 residues. We show that the global structural sequences approximate well the native structures of proteins, with an average cRMS of 0.69 Å over 2225 test proteins. The approximation is best for all α-proteins, while relatively poorer for all β-proteins. We then test the performance of four different sequence representations of proteins (their native sequence, the sequence of their secondary structure elements, and the local and global structural sequences based on our fragment library) with different classifiers in their ability to classify proteins that belong to five distinct folds of CATH. Without surprise, the primary sequence alone performs poorly as a structure classifier. We show that addition of either secondary structure information or local information from the structural sequence considerably improves the

  13. 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

  14. Design and structure of an equilibrium protein folding intermediate: a hint into dynamical regions of proteins.

    PubMed

    Ayuso-Tejedor, Sara; Angarica, Vladimir Espinosa; Bueno, Marta; Campos, Luis A; Abián, Olga; Bernadó, Pau; Sancho, Javier; Jiménez, M Angeles

    2010-07-23

    Partly unfolded protein conformations close to the native state may play important roles in protein function and in protein misfolding. Structural analyses of such conformations which are essential for their fully physicochemical understanding are complicated by their characteristic low populations at equilibrium. We stabilize here with a single mutation the equilibrium intermediate of apoflavodoxin thermal unfolding and determine its solution structure by NMR. It consists of a large native region identical with that observed in the X-ray structure of the wild-type protein plus an unfolded region. Small-angle X-ray scattering analysis indicates that the calculated ensemble of structures is consistent with the actual degree of expansion of the intermediate. The unfolded region encompasses discontinuous sequence segments that cluster in the 3D structure of the native protein forming the FMN cofactor binding loops and the binding site of a variety of partner proteins. Analysis of the apoflavodoxin inner interfaces reveals that those becoming destabilized in the intermediate are more polar than other inner interfaces of the protein. Natively folded proteins contain hydrophobic cores formed by the packing of hydrophobic surfaces, while natively unfolded proteins are rich in polar residues. The structure of the apoflavodoxin thermal intermediate suggests that the regions of natively folded proteins that are easily responsive to thermal activation may contain cores of intermediate hydrophobicity.

  15. Detergent release prolongs the lifetime of native-like membrane protein conformations in the gas-phase.

    PubMed

    Borysik, Antoni J; Hewitt, Dominic J; Robinson, Carol V

    2013-04-24

    Recent studies have suggested that detergents can protect the structure of membrane proteins during their transition from solution to the gas-phase. Here we provide mechanistic insights into this process by interrogating the structures of membrane protein-detergent assemblies in the gas-phase using ion mobility mass spectrometry. We show a clear correlation between the population of native-like protein conformations and the degree of detergent attachment to the protein in the gas-phase. Interrogation of these protein-detergent assemblies, by tandem mass spectrometry, enables us to define the mechanism by which detergents preserve native-like protein conformations in a solvent free environment. We show that the release of detergent is more central to the survival of these conformations than the physical presence of detergent bound to the protein. We propose that detergent release competes with structural collapse for the internal energy of the ion and permits the observation of transient native-like membrane protein conformations that are otherwise lost to structural rearrangement in the gas-phase.

  16. Analysis of low-density lipoprotein-associated proteins using the method of digitized native protein mapping.

    PubMed

    Jin, Ya; Chen, Jin; Wang, Ahui; Zhang, Jun; Chen, Shumin; Manabe, Takashi; Tan, Wen

    2016-07-01

    The method of digitized native protein mapping, combining nondenaturing micro 2DE, grid gel-cutting, and quantitative LC-MS/MS (in data-independent acquisition mode, or MS(E) ), was improved by using a new MS/MS mode, ion mobility separation enhanced-MS(E) (HDMS(E) ), and applied to analyze the area of human plasma low-density lipoprotein (LDL). An 18 mm × 4.8 mm rectangular area which included LDL on a nondenaturing micro 2D gel of human plasma was grid-cut into 72 square gel pieces and subjected to quantitative LC-MS/MS. Compared with MS(E) , HDMS(E) showed significantly higher performance, by assigning 50% more proteins and detecting each protein in more squares. A total of 253 proteins were assigned with LC-HDMS(E) and the quantity distribution of each was reconstructed as a native protein map. The maps showed that Apo B-100 was the most abundant protein in the grid-cut area, concentrated at pI ca. 5.4-6.1 and apparent mass ca. 1000 kDa, which corresponded to four gel pieces, squares 39-42. An Excel macro was prepared to search protein maps which showed protein quantity peaks localized within this concentrated region of Apo B-100. Twenty-two proteins out of the 252 matched this criterion, in which 19 proteins have been reported to be associated with LDL. This method only requires several microliters of a plasma sample and the principle of the protein separation is totally different from the commonly used ultracentrifugation. The results obtained by this method would provide new insights on the structure and function of LDL.

  17. Native and denatured forms of proteins can be discriminated at edge plane carbon electrodes.

    PubMed

    Ostatná, Veronika; Cernocká, Hana; Kurzątkowska, Katarzyna; Paleček, Emil

    2012-07-20

    In an attempt to develop a label-free electrochemical method for detection of changes in protein structures based on oxidizability of tyrosine and tryptophan residues we tested different types of carbon electrodes. We found that using edge plane pyrolytic graphite electrode (EPGE) we can discriminate between native and denatured forms of human serum albumin (HSA) and of other proteins, such as bovine and chicken serum albumin, aldolase and concanavalin. Treatment of natively unfolded α-synuclein with 8 M urea resulted only in a small change in the tyrosine oxidation peak, in a good agreement with absence of highly ordered structure in this protein. Using square wave voltammetry with EPGE we were able to follow the course of HSA denaturation at different urea concentrations. The electrochemical denaturation curve agreed reasonably well with that based on intrinsic fluorescence of tyrosine and tryptophan. It can be expected that the electrochemical method will be applicable to a large number of proteins and may become useful in biomedicine and proteomics.

  18. Structural investigations on native collagen type I fibrils using AFM

    SciTech Connect

    Strasser, Stefan; Zink, Albert; Janko, Marek; Heckl, Wolfgang M.; Thalhammer, Stefan . E-mail: stefan.thalhammer@gsf.de

    2007-03-02

    This study was carried out to determine the elastic properties of single collagen type I fibrils with the use of atomic force microscopy (AFM). Native collagen fibrils were formed by self-assembly in vitro characterized with the AFM. To confirm the inner assembly of the collagen fibrils, the AFM was used as a microdissection tool. Native collagen type I fibrils were dissected and the inner core uncovered. To determine the elastic properties of collagen fibrils the tip of the AFM was used as a nanoindentor by recording force-displacement curves. Measurements were done on the outer shell and in the core of the fibril. The structural investigations revealed the banding of the shell also in the core of native collagen fibrils. Nanoindentation experiments showed the same Young's modulus on the shell as well as in the core of the investigated native collagen fibrils. In addition, the measurements indicate a higher adhesion in the core of the collagen fibrils compared to the shell.

  19. Statistical analysis of native contact formation in the folding of designed model proteins

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tiana, Guido; Broglia, Ricardo A.

    2001-02-01

    The time evolution of the formation probability of native bonds has been studied for designed sequences which fold fast into the native conformation. From this analysis a clear hierarchy of bonds emerge: (a) local, fast forming highly stable native bonds built by some of the most strongly interacting amino acids of the protein; (b) nonlocal bonds formed late in the folding process, in coincidence with the folding nucleus, and involving essentially the same strongly interacting amino acids already participating in the fast bonds; (c) the rest of the native bonds whose behavior is subordinated, to a large extent, to that of the strong local and nonlocal native contacts.

  20. Importance of native-state topology for determining the folding rate of two-state proteins.

    PubMed

    Gromiha, M Michael

    2003-01-01

    Understanding the relationship between amino acid sequences and folding rate of proteins is a challenging task similar to protein folding problem. In this work, we have analyzed the relative importance of protein sequence and structure for predicting the protein folding rates in terms of amino acid properties and contact distances, respectively. We found that the parameters derived with protein sequence (physical-chemical, energetic, and conformational properties of amino acid residues) show very weak correlation (|r| < 0.39) with folding rates of 28 two-state proteins, indicating that the sequence information alone is not sufficient to understand the folding rates of two-state proteins. However, the maximum positive correlation obtained for the properties, number of medium-range contacts, and alpha-helical tendency reveals the importance of local interactions to initiate protein folding. On the other hand, a remarkable correlation (r varies from -0.74 to -0.88) has been obtained between structural parameters (contact order, long-range order, and total contact distance) and protein folding rates. Further, we found that the secondary structure content and solvent accessibility play a marginal role in determining the folding rates of two-state proteins. Multiple regression analysis carried out with the combination of three properties, beta-strand tendency, enthalpy change, and total contact distance improved the correlation to 0.92 with protein folding rates. The relative importance of existing methods along with multiple-regression model proposed in this work will be discussed. Our results demonstrate that the native-state topology is the major determinant for the folding rates of two-state proteins.

  1. Diverse Effects on the Native β-Sheet of the Human Prion Protein due to Disease-Associated Mutations†

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Wei; Kamp, Marc W. van der; Daggett, Valerie

    2010-01-01

    Prion diseases are fatal neurodegenerative disorders that involve the conversion of the normal cellular form of the prion protein (PrPC) to a misfolded pathogenic form (PrPSc). There are many genetic mutations of PrP associated with human prion diseases. Three of these point mutations are located at the first strand of the native β-sheet in human PrP: G131V, S132I and A133V. To understand the underlying structural and dynamic effects of these disease-causing mutations on the human protein, we performed molecular dynamics of wild-type and mutated human PrP. The results indicate that the mutations induced different effects but they were all related to misfolding of the native β-sheet: G131V caused the elongation of the native β-sheet, A133V disrupted the native β-sheet, and S132I converted the native β-sheet to an α-sheet. The observed changes were due to the reorientation of side chain-side chain interactions upon introducing the mutations. In addition, all mutations impaired a structurally conserved water site at the native β-sheet. Our work suggests various misfolding pathways for human PrP in response to mutation. PMID:20949975

  2. Thermally responsive silicon nanowire arrays for native/denatured-protein separation.

    PubMed

    Wang, Hongwei; Wang, Yanwei; Yuan, Lin; Wang, Lei; Yang, Weikang; Wu, Zhaoqiang; Li, Dan; Chen, Hong

    2013-03-15

    We present our findings of the selective adsorption of native and denatured proteins onto thermally responsive, native-protein resistant poly(N-isopropylacrylamide) (PNIPAAm) decorated silicon nanowire arrays (SiNWAs). The PNIPAAm-SiNWAs surface, which shows very low levels of native-protein adsorption, favors the adsorption of denatured proteins. The amount of denatured-protein adsorption is higher at temperatures above the lower critical solution temperature (LCST) of PNIPAAm. Temperature cycling surrounding the LCST, which ensures against thermal denaturation of native proteins, further increases the amount of denatured-protein adsorption. Moreover, the PNIPAAm-SiNWAs surface is able to selectively adsorb denatured protein even from mixtures of different protein species; meanwhile, the amount of native proteins in solution is kept nearly at its original level. It is believed that these results will not only enrich current understanding of protein interactions with PNIPAAm-modified SiNWAs surfaces, but may also stimulate applications of PNIPAAm-SiNWAs surfaces for native/denatured protein separation.

  3. CoDNaS 2.0: a comprehensive database of protein conformational diversity in the native state.

    PubMed

    Monzon, Alexander Miguel; Rohr, Cristian Oscar; Fornasari, María Silvina; Parisi, Gustavo

    2016-01-01

    CoDNaS (conformational diversity of the native state) is a protein conformational diversity database. Conformational diversity describes structural differences between conformers that define the native state of proteins. It is a key concept to understand protein function and biological processes related to protein functions. CoDNaS offers a well curated database that is experimentally driven, thoroughly linked, and annotated. CoDNaS facilitates the extraction of key information on small structural differences based on protein movements. CoDNaS enables users to easily relate the degree of conformational diversity with physical, chemical and biological properties derived from experiments on protein structure and biological characteristics. The new version of CoDNaS includes ∼70% of all available protein structures, and new tools have been added that run sequence searches, display structural flexibility profiles and allow users to browse the database for different structural classes. These tools facilitate the exploration of protein conformational diversity and its role in protein function. Database URL:http://ufq.unq.edu.ar/codnas.

  4. CoDNaS 2.0: a comprehensive database of protein conformational diversity in the native state

    PubMed Central

    Monzon, Alexander Miguel; Rohr, Cristian Oscar; Fornasari, María Silvina; Parisi, Gustavo

    2016-01-01

    CoDNaS (conformational diversity of the native state) is a protein conformational diversity database. Conformational diversity describes structural differences between conformers that define the native state of proteins. It is a key concept to understand protein function and biological processes related to protein functions. CoDNaS offers a well curated database that is experimentally driven, thoroughly linked, and annotated. CoDNaS facilitates the extraction of key information on small structural differences based on protein movements. CoDNaS enables users to easily relate the degree of conformational diversity with physical, chemical and biological properties derived from experiments on protein structure and biological characteristics. The new version of CoDNaS includes ∼70% of all available protein structures, and new tools have been added that run sequence searches, display structural flexibility profiles and allow users to browse the database for different structural classes. These tools facilitate the exploration of protein conformational diversity and its role in protein function. Database URL: http://ufq.unq.edu.ar/codnas PMID:27022160

  5. The Native Form and Maturation Process of Hepatitis C Virus Core Protein

    PubMed Central

    Yasui, Kohichiroh; Wakita, Takaji; Tsukiyama-Kohara, Kyoko; Funahashi, Shin-Ichi; Ichikawa, Masumi; Kajita, Tadahiro; Moradpour, Darius; Wands, Jack R.; Kohara, Michinori

    1998-01-01

    The maturation and subcellular localization of hepatitis C virus (HCV) core protein were investigated with both a vaccinia virus expression system and CHO cell lines stably transformed with HCV cDNA. Two HCV core proteins, with molecular sizes of 21 kDa (p21) and 23 kDa (p23), were identified. The C-terminal end of p23 is amino acid 191 of the HCV polyprotein, and p21 is produced as a result of processing between amino acids 174 and 191. The subcellular localization of the HCV core protein was examined by confocal laser scanning microscopy. Although HCV core protein resided predominantly in the cytoplasm, it was also found in the nucleus and had the same molecular size as p21 in both locations, as determined by subcellular fractionation. The HCV core proteins had different immunoreactivities to a panel of monoclonal antibodies. Antibody 5E3 stained core protein in both the cytoplasm and the nucleus, C7-50 stained core protein only in the cytoplasm, and 499S stained core protein only in the nucleus. These results clearly indicate that the p23 form of HCV core protein is processed to p21 in the cytoplasm and that the core protein in the nucleus has a higher-order structure different from that of p21 in the cytoplasm. HCV core protein in sera of patients with HCV infection was analyzed in order to determine the molecular size of genuinely processed HCV core protein. HCV core protein in sera was found to have exactly the same molecular weight as the p21 protein. These results suggest that p21 core protein is a component of native viral particles. PMID:9621068

  6. Characterization of Native Protein Complexes and Protein Isoform Variation Using Size-fractionation-based Quantitative Proteomics*

    PubMed Central

    Kirkwood, Kathryn J.; Ahmad, Yasmeen; Larance, Mark; Lamond, Angus I.

    2013-01-01

    Proteins form a diverse array of complexes that mediate cellular function and regulation. A largely unexplored feature of such protein complexes is the selective participation of specific protein isoforms and/or post-translationally modified forms. In this study, we combined native size-exclusion chromatography (SEC) with high-throughput proteomic analysis to characterize soluble protein complexes isolated from human osteosarcoma (U2OS) cells. Using this approach, we have identified over 71,500 peptides and 1,600 phosphosites, corresponding to over 8,000 proteins, distributed across 40 SEC fractions. This represents >50% of the predicted U2OS cell proteome, identified with a mean peptide sequence coverage of 27% per protein. Three biological replicates were performed, allowing statistical evaluation of the data and demonstrating a high degree of reproducibility in the SEC fractionation procedure. Specific proteins were detected interacting with multiple independent complexes, as typified by the separation of distinct complexes for the MRFAP1-MORF4L1-MRGBP interaction network. The data also revealed protein isoforms and post-translational modifications that selectively associated with distinct subsets of protein complexes. Surprisingly, there was clear enrichment for specific Gene Ontology terms associated with differential size classes of protein complexes. This study demonstrates that combined SEC/MS analysis can be used for the system-wide annotation of protein complexes and to predict potential isoform-specific interactions. All of these SEC data on the native separation of protein complexes have been integrated within the Encyclopedia of Proteome Dynamics, an online, multidimensional data-sharing resource available to the community. PMID:24043423

  7. Structural conversion from non-native to native form of recombinant human epidermal growth factor by Brevibacillus choshinensis.

    PubMed

    Miyauchi, A; Ozawa, M; Mizukami, M; Yashiro, K; Ebisu, S; Tojo, T; Fujii, T; Takagi, H

    1999-11-01

    Brevibacillus choshinensis (Bacillus brevis) HPD31 is a very efficient producer of recombinant human epidermal growth factor (EGF). The produced EGF is secreted into the medium with high efficiency. However part of the EGF that accumulates in the medium, exists as multimeric forms which are biologically inactive. We found the bacterium has the activity to structurally convert multimeric forms to the monomeric, native ones. Optimal temperature and pH for the conversion were 40 degrees C and pH 9, respectively. The reaction was promoted in the presence of reduced glutathione or cysteine. But the cells which had been sonicated or exposed to moderate heat treatment completely lost the activity. Thus, it was presumed that the activity might be due to the enzyme(s) that catalyze the protein disulfide exchanging reaction, and that they resides on the surface of viable cells.

  8. Genetic Variation and Population Structure in Native Americans

    PubMed Central

    Ramachandran, Sohini; Ray, Nicolas; Bedoya, Gabriel; Rojas, Winston; Parra, Maria V; Molina, Julio A; Gallo, Carla; Mazzotti, Guido; Poletti, Giovanni; Hill, Kim; Hurtado, Ana M; Labuda, Damian; Klitz, William; Barrantes, Ramiro; Bortolini, Maria Cátira; Salzano, Francisco M; Petzl-Erler, Maria Luiza; Tsuneto, Luiza T; Llop, Elena; Rothhammer, Francisco; Excoffier, Laurent; Feldman, Marcus W; Rosenberg, Noah A; Ruiz-Linares, Andrés

    2007-01-01

    We examined genetic diversity and population structure in the American landmass using 678 autosomal microsatellite markers genotyped in 422 individuals representing 24 Native American populations sampled from North, Central, and South America. These data were analyzed jointly with similar data available in 54 other indigenous populations worldwide, including an additional five Native American groups. The Native American populations have lower genetic diversity and greater differentiation than populations from other continental regions. We observe gradients both of decreasing genetic diversity as a function of geographic distance from the Bering Strait and of decreasing genetic similarity to Siberians—signals of the southward dispersal of human populations from the northwestern tip of the Americas. We also observe evidence of: (1) a higher level of diversity and lower level of population structure in western South America compared to eastern South America, (2) a relative lack of differentiation between Mesoamerican and Andean populations, (3) a scenario in which coastal routes were easier for migrating peoples to traverse in comparison with inland routes, and (4) a partial agreement on a local scale between genetic similarity and the linguistic classification of populations. These findings offer new insights into the process of population dispersal and differentiation during the peopling of the Americas. PMID:18039031

  9. Characteristics of surface layer proteins from two new and native strains of Lactobacillus brevis.

    PubMed

    Mobarak Qamsari, Elahe; Kasra Kermanshahi, Rouha; Erfan, Mohammad; Ghadam, Parinaz; Sardari, Soroush; Eslami, Neda

    2017-02-01

    In this work, some important characteristics of surface layer (S-layer) proteins extracted from two new and native Lactobacillus strains, L.brevis KM3 and L.brevis KM7, were investigated. The presence of S-layer on the external surface of L.brevis KM3 was displayed by thin sectioning and negative staining. SDS-PAGE analysis were shown same dominant protein bands approximately around 48kDa for both S-layer proteins. Moreover, the S-layer reappeared when LiCl treated cells were allowed to grow again. Protein secondary structure and thermal behavior were evaluated by using circular dichroism (CD) and differential scanning calorimetry (DSC), respectively. Both S-layer proteins had high content of β-sheet and low amount of α-helix. The thermograms of lyophilized S-layer proteins of L.brevis KM3 and L.brevis KM7 showed one transition peak at 67.9°C and 59.14°C, respectively. To determine monodispersity of extracted S-layer proteins, dynamic light scattering (DLS) was used. The results indicated that the main population of S-layer molecules in two tested lactobacillus strains were composed of monomer with an expected diameter close to 10nm. Furthermore, Zeta potential measurements were showed positive potential for both S-layer proteins, as expected. Our results could be used as the basis for biotechnological applications of these two new S-layer proteins.

  10. Blind protein structure prediction using accelerated free-energy simulations

    PubMed Central

    Perez, Alberto; Morrone, Joseph A.; Brini, Emiliano; MacCallum, Justin L.; Dill, Ken A.

    2016-01-01

    We report a key proof of principle of a new acceleration method [Modeling Employing Limited Data (MELD)] for predicting protein structures by molecular dynamics simulation. It shows that such Boltzmann-satisfying techniques are now sufficiently fast and accurate to predict native protein structures in a limited test within the Critical Assessment of Structure Prediction (CASP) community-wide blind competition. PMID:27847872

  11. Scaffolded multiple cyclic peptide libraries for protein mimics by native chemical ligation.

    PubMed

    van de Langemheen, H; van Hoeke, M; Quarles van Ufford, H C; Kruijtzer, J A W; Liskamp, R M J

    2014-07-07

    The accessibility to collections, libraries and arrays of cyclic peptides is increasingly important since cyclic peptides may provide better mimics of the loop-like structures ubiquitously present in and - especially - on the surface of proteins. The next important step is the preparation of libraries of ensembles of scaffolded cyclic peptides, which upon screening may lead to promising protein mimics. Here we describe the synthesis of a tri-cysteine containing scaffold as well as the simultaneous native chemical ligation of three cyclic peptides thereby affording a clean library of multiple cyclic peptides on this scaffold, representing potential mimics of gp120. Members of this collection of protein mimics showed a decent inhibition of the gp120-CD4 interaction.

  12. Statistical potential for assessment and prediction of protein structures

    PubMed Central

    Shen, Min-yi; Sali, Andrej

    2006-01-01

    Protein structures in the Protein Data Bank provide a wealth of data about the interactions that determine the native states of proteins. Using the probability theory, we derive an atomic distance-dependent statistical potential from a sample of native structures that does not depend on any adjustable parameters (Discrete Optimized Protein Energy, or DOPE). DOPE is based on an improved reference state that corresponds to noninteracting atoms in a homogeneous sphere with the radius dependent on a sample native structure; it thus accounts for the finite and spherical shape of the native structures. The DOPE potential was extracted from a nonredundant set of 1472 crystallographic structures. We tested DOPE and five other scoring functions by the detection of the native state among six multiple target decoy sets, the correlation between the score and model error, and the identification of the most accurate non-native structure in the decoy set. For all decoy sets, DOPE is the best performing function in terms of all criteria, except for a tie in one criterion for one decoy set. To facilitate its use in various applications, such as model assessment, loop modeling, and fitting into cryo-electron microscopy mass density maps combined with comparative protein structure modeling, DOPE was incorporated into the modeling package MODELLER-8. PMID:17075131

  13. Atomistic structural ensemble refinement reveals non-native structure stabilizes a sub-millisecond folding intermediate of CheY

    PubMed Central

    Shi, Jade; Nobrega, R. Paul; Schwantes, Christian; Kathuria, Sagar V.; Bilsel, Osman; Matthews, C. Robert; Lane, T. J.; Pande, Vijay S.

    2017-01-01

    The dynamics of globular proteins can be described in terms of transitions between a folded native state and less-populated intermediates, or excited states, which can play critical roles in both protein folding and function. Excited states are by definition transient species, and therefore are difficult to characterize using current experimental techniques. Here, we report an atomistic model of the excited state ensemble of a stabilized mutant of an extensively studied flavodoxin fold protein CheY. We employed a hybrid simulation and experimental approach in which an aggregate 42 milliseconds of all-atom molecular dynamics were used as an informative prior for the structure of the excited state ensemble. This prior was then refined against small-angle X-ray scattering (SAXS) data employing an established method (EROS). The most striking feature of the resulting excited state ensemble was an unstructured N-terminus stabilized by non-native contacts in a conformation that is topologically simpler than the native state. Using these results, we then predict incisive single molecule FRET experiments as a means of model validation. This study demonstrates the paradigm of uniting simulation and experiment in a statistical model to study the structure of protein excited states and rationally design validating experiments. PMID:28272524

  14. Atomistic structural ensemble refinement reveals non-native structure stabilizes a sub-millisecond folding intermediate of CheY

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shi, Jade; Nobrega, R. Paul; Schwantes, Christian; Kathuria, Sagar V.; Bilsel, Osman; Matthews, C. Robert; Lane, T. J.; Pande, Vijay S.

    2017-03-01

    The dynamics of globular proteins can be described in terms of transitions between a folded native state and less-populated intermediates, or excited states, which can play critical roles in both protein folding and function. Excited states are by definition transient species, and therefore are difficult to characterize using current experimental techniques. Here, we report an atomistic model of the excited state ensemble of a stabilized mutant of an extensively studied flavodoxin fold protein CheY. We employed a hybrid simulation and experimental approach in which an aggregate 42 milliseconds of all-atom molecular dynamics were used as an informative prior for the structure of the excited state ensemble. This prior was then refined against small-angle X-ray scattering (SAXS) data employing an established method (EROS). The most striking feature of the resulting excited state ensemble was an unstructured N-terminus stabilized by non-native contacts in a conformation that is topologically simpler than the native state. Using these results, we then predict incisive single molecule FRET experiments as a means of model validation. This study demonstrates the paradigm of uniting simulation and experiment in a statistical model to study the structure of protein excited states and rationally design validating experiments.

  15. Protein structure determination from NMR chemical shifts.

    PubMed

    Cavalli, Andrea; Salvatella, Xavier; Dobson, Christopher M; Vendruscolo, Michele

    2007-06-05

    NMR spectroscopy plays a major role in the determination of the structures and dynamics of proteins and other biological macromolecules. Chemical shifts are the most readily and accurately measurable NMR parameters, and they reflect with great specificity the conformations of native and nonnative states of proteins. We show, using 11 examples of proteins representative of the major structural classes and containing up to 123 residues, that it is possible to use chemical shifts as structural restraints in combination with a conventional molecular mechanics force field to determine the conformations of proteins at a resolution of 2 angstroms or better. This strategy should be widely applicable and, subject to further development, will enable quantitative structural analysis to be carried out to address a range of complex biological problems not accessible to current structural techniques.

  16. The inactivating factor of glutamine synthetase, IF7, is a "natively unfolded" protein

    PubMed Central

    Muro-Pastor, M. Isabel; Barrera, Francisco N.; Reyes, José C.; Florencio, Francisco J.; Neira, José L.

    2003-01-01

    Glutamine synthetase (GS) is the key enzyme responsible for the primary assimilation of ammonium in all living organisms, and it catalyses the synthesis of glutamine from glutamic acid, ATP, and ammonium. One of the recently discovered mechanisms of GS regulation involves protein-protein interactions with a small 65-residue-long protein named IF7. Here, we study the structure and stability of IF7 and its binding properties to GS, by using several biophysical techniques (fluorescence, circular dichroism, Fourier transform infrared and nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopies, and gel filtration chromatography) which provide complementary structural information. The findings show that IF7 has a small amount of residual secondary structure, but lacks a well defined tertiary structure, and is not compact. Thus, all of the studies indicate that IF7 is a "natively unfolded" protein. The binding of IF7 to GS, its natural binding partner, occurs with an apparent dissociation constant of KD = 0.3 ± 0.1 μM, as measured by fluorescence. We discuss the implications for the GS regulation mechanisms of IF7 being unfolded. PMID:12824490

  17. Sucralose Destabilization of Protein Structure

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cho, Inha; Chen, Lee; Shukla, Nimesh; Othon, Christina

    2015-03-01

    Sucralose is a commonly employed artificial sweetener. Sucralose behaves very differently than its natural disaccharide counterpart, sucrose, in terms of its interaction with biomolecules. The presence of sucralose in solution is found to destabilize the native structure of the globular protein Bovine Serum Albumin (BSA). The melting temperature decreases as a linear function of sucralose concentration. We correlate this destabilization with the increased polarity of the sucralose molecule as compared to sucrose. The strongly polar nature is observed as a large dielectric friction exerted on the excited state rotational diffusion of tryptophan using time-resolved fluorescence anisotropy. Tryptophan exhibits rotational diffusion proportional to the measured bulk viscosity for sucrose solutions over a wide range of concentrations, consistent with a Stokes-Einstein diffusional model. For sucralose solutions however, the diffusion is linearly dependent with the concentration, strongly diverging from the viscosity predictions. The polar nature of sucralose causes a dramatically different interaction with biomolecules than natural disaccharide molecules. Connecticut Space Grant Consortium.

  18. Interaction between dimer interface residues of native and mutated SOD1 protein: a theoretical study.

    PubMed

    Keerthana, S P; Kolandaivel, P

    2015-04-01

    Cu-Zn superoxide dismutase 1 (SOD1) is a highly conserved bimetallic protein enzyme, used for the scavenging the superoxide radicals (O2 (-)) produced due to aerobic metabolism in the mitochondrial respiratory chain. Over 100 mutations have been identified and found to be in the homodimeric structure of SOD1. The enzyme has to be maintained in its dimeric state for the structural stability and enzymatic activity. From our investigation, we found that the mutations apart from the dimer interface residues are found to affect the dimer stability of protein and hence enhancing the aggregation and misfolding tendency of mutated protein. The homodimeric state of SOD1 is found to be held together by the non-covalent interactions. The molecular dynamics simulation has been used to study the hydrogen bond interactions between the dimer interface residues of the monomers in native and mutated forms of SOD1 in apo- and holo-states. The results obtained by this analysis reveal the fact that the loss of hydrogen bond interactions between the monomers of the dimer is responsible for the reduced stability of the apo- and holo-mutant forms of SOD1. The conformers with dimer interface residues in native and mutated protein obtained by the molecular dynamics simulation is subjected to quantum mechanical study using M052X/6-31G(d) level of theory. The charge transfer between N-H···O interactions in the dimer interface residues were studied. The weak interaction between the monomers of the dimer accounts for the reduced dimerization and enhanced deformation energy in the mutated SOD1 protein.

  19. Efficient Synthesis of Peptide and Protein Functionalized Pyrrole-Imidazole Polyamides Using Native Chemical Ligation

    PubMed Central

    Janssen, Brian M. G.; van Ommeren, Sven P. F. I.; Merkx, Maarten

    2015-01-01

    The advancement of DNA-based bionanotechnology requires efficient strategies to functionalize DNA nanostructures in a specific manner with other biomolecules, most importantly peptides and proteins. Common DNA-functionalization methods rely on laborious and covalent conjugation between DNA and proteins or peptides. Pyrrole-imidazole (Py–Im) polyamides, based on natural minor groove DNA-binding small molecules, can bind to DNA in a sequence specific fashion. In this study, we explore the use of Py–Im polyamides for addressing proteins and peptides to DNA in a sequence specific and non-covalent manner. A generic synthetic approach based on native chemical ligation was established that allows efficient conjugation of both peptides and recombinant proteins to Py–Im polyamides. The effect of Py–Im polyamide conjugation on DNA binding was investigated by Surface Plasmon Resonance (SPR). Although the synthesis of different protein-Py–Im-polyamide conjugates was successful, attenuation of DNA affinity was observed, in particular for the protein-Py–Im-polyamide conjugates. The practical use of protein-Py–Im-polyamide conjugates for addressing DNA structures in an orthogonal but non-covalent manner, therefore, remains to be established. PMID:26053396

  20. Efficient Synthesis of Peptide and Protein Functionalized Pyrrole-Imidazole Polyamides Using Native Chemical Ligation.

    PubMed

    Janssen, Brian M G; van Ommeren, Sven P F I; Merkx, Maarten

    2015-06-04

    The advancement of DNA-based bionanotechnology requires efficient strategies to functionalize DNA nanostructures in a specific manner with other biomolecules, most importantly peptides and proteins. Common DNA-functionalization methods rely on laborious and covalent conjugation between DNA and proteins or peptides. Pyrrole-imidazole (Py-Im) polyamides, based on natural minor groove DNA-binding small molecules, can bind to DNA in a sequence specific fashion. In this study, we explore the use of Py-Im polyamides for addressing proteins and peptides to DNA in a sequence specific and non-covalent manner. A generic synthetic approach based on native chemical ligation was established that allows efficient conjugation of both peptides and recombinant proteins to Py-Im polyamides. The effect of Py-Im polyamide conjugation on DNA binding was investigated by Surface Plasmon Resonance (SPR). Although the synthesis of different protein-Py-Im-polyamide conjugates was successful, attenuation of DNA affinity was observed, in particular for the protein-Py-Im-polyamide conjugates. The practical use of protein-Py-Im-polyamide conjugates for addressing DNA structures in an orthogonal but non-covalent manner, therefore, remains to be established.

  1. Charge site assignment in native proteins by ultraviolet photodissociation (UVPD) mass spectrometry

    PubMed Central

    Morrison, Lindsay J.; Brodbelt, Jennifer S.

    2015-01-01

    Characterization of all gas-phase charge sites of natively sprayed proteins and peptides is demonstrated using 193 nm UVPD. The high sequence coverage offered by UVPD is exploited for the accurate determination of charge sites in protein systems up to 18 kDa, allowing charge site to be studied as a function of protein conformation and the presence of disulfide bonds. Charging protons are found on both basic sidechains and on the amide backbone of less basic amino acids such as serine, glutamine, and proline. UVPD analysis was performed on the 3+ charge state of melittin, the 5+ to 8+ charge states of ubiquitin, and the 8+ charge state of reduced and oxidized β-lactoglobulin. The location of charges in gas-phase proteins is known to impact structure; molecular modeling of different charge site motifs of 3+ melittin demonstrates how placement of protons in simulations can dramatically impact the predicted structure of the molecule. The location of positive charge sites in ubiquitin and β-lactoglobulin are additionally found to depend on the presence or absence of salt-bridges, columbic repulsion across the length of the peptide, and protein conformation. Charge site isomers are demonstrated for ubiquitin and β-lactoglobulin but found to be much less numerous than previously predicted. PMID:26596460

  2. Protein mechanical unfolding: Importance of non-native interactions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kouza, Maksim; Hu, Chin-Kun; Zung, Hoang; Li, Mai Suan

    2009-12-01

    Mechanical unfolding of the fourth domain of Distyostelium discoideum filamin (DDFLN4) was studied by all-atom molecular dynamics simulations, using the GROMOS96 force field 43a1 and the simple point charge explicit water solvent. Our study reveals an important role of non-native interactions in the unfolding process. Namely, the existence of a peak centered at the end-to-end extension ΔR ˜22 nm in the force-extension curve is associated with breaking of non-native hydrogen bonds. Such a peak has been observed in experiments but not in Go models, where non-native interactions are neglected. We predict that an additional peak occurs at ΔR ˜2 nm using not only GROMOS96 force field 43a1 but also Amber 94 and OPLS force fields. This result would stimulate further experimental studies on elastic properties of DDFLN4.

  3. The origin of consistent protein structure refinement from structural averaging.

    PubMed

    Park, Hahnbeom; DiMaio, Frank; Baker, David

    2015-06-02

    Recent studies have shown that explicit solvent molecular dynamics (MD) simulation followed by structural averaging can consistently improve protein structure models. We find that improvement upon averaging is not limited to explicit water MD simulation, as consistent improvements are also observed for more efficient implicit solvent MD or Monte Carlo minimization simulations. To determine the origin of these improvements, we examine the changes in model accuracy brought about by averaging at the individual residue level. We find that the improvement in model quality from averaging results from the superposition of two effects: a dampening of deviations from the correct structure in the least well modeled regions, and a reinforcement of consistent movements towards the correct structure in better modeled regions. These observations are consistent with an energy landscape model in which the magnitude of the energy gradient toward the native structure decreases with increasing distance from the native state.

  4. 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

  5. Native-sized spider silk proteins synthesized in planta via intein-based multimerization.

    PubMed

    Hauptmann, Valeska; Weichert, Nicola; Menzel, Matthias; Knoch, Dominic; Paege, Norman; Scheller, Jürgen; Spohn, Uwe; Conrad, Udo; Gils, Mario

    2013-04-01

    The synthesis of native-sized proteins is a pre-requisite for exploiting the potential of spider silk as a bio-based material. The unique properties of spider silk, such as extraordinary tensile strength and elasticity, result from the highly repetitive nature of spider silk protein motifs. The present report describes the combination of spider silk flagelliform protein (FLAG) production in the endoplasmic reticulum of tobacco plant leaf cells with an intein-based posttranslational protein fusion technology. The repeated ligation of FLAG monomers resulted in the formation of large multimers. This method avoids the need for highly repetitive transgenes, which may result in a higher genetic and transcriptional stability. Here we show, for the first time, the production of synthetic, high molecular weight spider silk proteins larger than 250 kDa based on the assembly of protein monomers via intein-mediated trans-splicing in planta. The resulting multimeric structures form microfibers, thereby demonstrating their great potential as a biomaterial.

  6. Are Charge-State Distributions a Reliable Tool Describing Molecular Ensembles of Intrinsically Disordered Proteins by Native MS?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Natalello, Antonino; Santambrogio, Carlo; Grandori, Rita

    2017-01-01

    Native mass spectrometry (MS) has become a central tool of structural proteomics, but its applicability to the peculiar class of intrinsically disordered proteins (IDPs) is still object of debate. IDPs lack an ordered tridimensional structure and are characterized by high conformational plasticity. Since they represent valuable targets for cancer and neurodegeneration research, there is an urgent need of methodological advances for description of the conformational ensembles populated by these proteins in solution. However, structural rearrangements during electrospray-ionization (ESI) or after the transfer to the gas phase could affect data obtained by native ESI-MS. In particular, charge-state distributions (CSDs) are affected by protein conformation inside ESI droplets, while ion mobility (IM) reflects protein conformation in the gas phase. This review focuses on the available evidence relating IDP solution ensembles with CSDs, trying to summarize cases of apparent consistency or discrepancy. The protein-specificity of ionization patterns and their responses to ligands and buffer conditions suggests that CSDs are imprinted to protein structural features also in the case of IDPs. Nevertheless, it seems that these proteins are more easily affected by electrospray conditions, leading in some cases to rearrangements of the conformational ensembles.

  7. Native aggregation as a cause of origin of temporary cellular structures needed for all forms of cellular activity, signaling and transformations

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    According to the hypothesis explored in this paper, native aggregation is genetically controlled (programmed) reversible aggregation that occurs when interacting proteins form new temporary structures through highly specific interactions. It is assumed that Anfinsen's dogma may be extended to protein aggregation: composition and amino acid sequence determine not only the secondary and tertiary structure of single protein, but also the structure of protein aggregates (associates). Cell function is considered as a transition between two states (two states model), the resting state and state of activity (this applies to the cell as a whole and to its individual structures). In the resting state, the key proteins are found in the following inactive forms: natively unfolded and globular. When the cell is activated, secondary structures appear in natively unfolded proteins (including unfolded regions in other proteins), and globular proteins begin to melt and their secondary structures become available for interaction with the secondary structures of other proteins. These temporary secondary structures provide a means for highly specific interactions between proteins. As a result, native aggregation creates temporary structures necessary for cell activity. "One of the principal objects of theoretical research in any department of knowledge is to find the point of view from which the subject appears in its greatest simplicity." Josiah Willard Gibbs (1839-1903) PMID:20534114

  8. Role of native-state structure in rubredoxin native-state hydrogen exchange.

    PubMed

    LeMaster, David M; Anderson, Janet S; Hernández, Griselda

    2006-08-22

    Amide exchange rates were measured for Pyrococcus furiosus (Pf) rubredoxin substituted with either Zn(II), Ga(III), or Ge(IV). Base-catalyzed exchange rate constants increase up to 3000-fold per unit charge for the highly protected amides surrounding the active site metal, yielding apparent residue-specific conformational energy decreases of more than 8 kcal/mol in a comparison of the Zn(II)- and Ge(IV)-substituted proteins. However, the exchange kinetics for many of the other amides of the protein are insensitive to these metal substitutions. These differential rates are inversely correlated with the distance between the amide nitrogen and the metal in the X-ray structure, out to a distance of at least 12 A, consistent with an electrostatic potential-dependent shifting of the amide nitrogen pK. This strongly correlated distance dependence is consistent with a nativelike structure for the exchange-competent conformations. The electric field potential within the interior of the rubredoxin structure gives rise to a change of as much as a million-fold in the rate for the exchange-competent state of the individual amide hydrogens. Nevertheless, the strength of these electrostatic interactions in Pf rubredoxin appears to be comparable to those previously reported within other proteins. As a result, contrary to the conventional analysis of hydrogen exchange data, for exchange processes that occur via nonglobal transitions, the residual conformational structure will often modulate the observed rates. Although this necessarily complicates the estimation of the conformational equilibria of these exchange-competent states, this dependence on residual structure can provide insight into the conformation of these transient states.

  9. Protein Structure Recognition: From Eigenvector Analysis to Structural Threading Method

    SciTech Connect

    Cao, Haibo

    2003-01-01

    In this work, they try to understand the protein folding problem using pair-wise hydrophobic interaction as the dominant interaction for the protein folding process. They found a strong correlation between amino acid sequences and the corresponding native structure of the protein. Some applications of this correlation were discussed in this dissertation include the domain partition and a new structural threading method as well as the performance of this method in the CASP5 competition. In the first part, they give a brief introduction to the protein folding problem. Some essential knowledge and progress from other research groups was discussed. This part includes discussions of interactions among amino acids residues, lattice HP model, and the design ability principle. In the second part, they try to establish the correlation between amino acid sequence and the corresponding native structure of the protein. This correlation was observed in the eigenvector study of protein contact matrix. They believe the correlation is universal, thus it can be used in automatic partition of protein structures into folding domains. In the third part, they discuss a threading method based on the correlation between amino acid sequences and ominant eigenvector of the structure contact-matrix. A mathematically straightforward iteration scheme provides a self-consistent optimum global sequence-structure alignment. The computational efficiency of this method makes it possible to search whole protein structure databases for structural homology without relying on sequence similarity. The sensitivity and specificity of this method is discussed, along with a case of blind test prediction. In the appendix, they list the overall performance of this threading method in CASP5 blind test in comparison with other existing approaches.

  10. Multiple protein structure alignment.

    PubMed Central

    Taylor, W. R.; Flores, T. P.; Orengo, C. A.

    1994-01-01

    A method was developed to compare protein structures and to combine them into a multiple structure consensus. Previous methods of multiple structure comparison have only concatenated pairwise alignments or produced a consensus structure by averaging coordinate sets. The current method is a fusion of the fast structure comparison program SSAP and the multiple sequence alignment program MULTAL. As in MULTAL, structures are progressively combined, producing intermediate consensus structures that are compared directly to each other and all remaining single structures. This leads to a hierarchic "condensation," continually evaluated in the light of the emerging conserved core regions. Following the SSAP approach, all interatomic vectors were retained with well-conserved regions distinguished by coherent vector bundles (the structural equivalent of a conserved sequence position). Each bundle of vectors is summarized by a resultant, whereas vector coherence is captured in an error term, which is the only distinction between conserved and variable positions. Resultant vectors are used directly in the comparison, which is weighted by their error values, giving greater importance to the matching of conserved positions. The resultant vectors and their errors can also be used directly in molecular modeling. Applications of the method were assessed by the quality of the resulting sequence alignments, phylogenetic tree construction, and databank scanning with the consensus. Visual assessment of the structural superpositions and consensus structure for various well-characterized families confirmed that the consensus had identified a reasonable core. PMID:7849601

  11. Machine-learning scoring functions for identifying native poses of ligands docked to known and novel proteins

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    Background Molecular docking is a widely-employed method in structure-based drug design. An essential component of molecular docking programs is a scoring function (SF) that can be used to identify the most stable binding pose of a ligand, when bound to a receptor protein, from among a large set of candidate poses. Despite intense efforts in developing conventional SFs, which are either force-field based, knowledge-based, or empirical, their limited docking power (or ability to successfully identify the correct pose) has been a major impediment to cost-effective drug discovery. Therefore, in this work, we explore a range of novel SFs employing different machine-learning (ML) approaches in conjunction with physicochemical and geometrical features characterizing protein-ligand complexes to predict the native or near-native pose of a ligand docked to a receptor protein's binding site. We assess the docking accuracies of these new ML SFs as well as those of conventional SFs in the context of the 2007 PDBbind benchmark dataset on both diverse and homogeneous (protein-family-specific) test sets. Further, we perform a systematic analysis of the performance of the proposed SFs in identifying native poses of ligands that are docked to novel protein targets. Results and conclusion We find that the best performing ML SF has a success rate of 80% in identifying poses that are within 1 Å root-mean-square deviation from the native poses of 65 different protein families. This is in comparison to a success rate of only 70% achieved by the best conventional SF, ASP, employed in the commercial docking software GOLD. In addition, the proposed ML SFs perform better on novel proteins that they were never trained on before. We also observed steady gains in the performance of these scoring functions as the training set size and number of features were increased by considering more protein-ligand complexes and/or more computationally-generated poses for each complex. PMID:25916860

  12. Model Building and Refinement of a Natively Glycosylated HIV-1 Env Protein by High-Resolution Cryoelectron Microscopy.

    PubMed

    Lee, Jeong Hyun; de Val, Natalia; Lyumkis, Dmitry; Ward, Andrew B

    2015-10-06

    Secretory and membrane proteins from mammalian cells undergo post-translational modifications, including N-linked glycosylation, which can result in a large number of possible glycoforms. This sample heterogeneity can be problematic for structural studies, particularly X-ray crystallography. Thus, crystal structures of heavily glycosylated proteins such as the HIV-1 Env viral spike protein have been determined by removing the majority of glycans. This step is most frequently carried out using Endoglycosidase H (EndoH) and requires that all expressed glycans be in the high-mannose form, which is often not the native glycoform. With significantly improved technologies in single-particle cryoelectron microscopy, we demonstrate that it is now possible to refine and build natively glycosylated HIV-1 Env structures in solution to 4.36 Å resolution. At this resolution we can now analyze the complete epitope of a broadly neutralizing antibody (bnAb), PGT128, in the context of the trimer expressed with native glycans.

  13. Multiparametric high-resolution imaging of native proteins by force-distance curve-based AFM.

    PubMed

    Pfreundschuh, Moritz; Martinez-Martin, David; Mulvihill, Estefania; Wegmann, Susanne; Muller, Daniel J

    2014-05-01

    A current challenge in the life sciences is to understand how the properties of individual molecular machines adjust in order to meet the functional requirements of the cell. Recent developments in force-distance (FD) curve-based atomic force microscopy (FD-based AFM) enable researchers to combine sub-nanometer imaging with quantitative mapping of physical, chemical and biological properties. Here we present a protocol to apply FD-based AFM to the multiparametric imaging of native proteins under physiological conditions. We describe procedures for experimental FD-based AFM setup, high-resolution imaging of proteins in the native unperturbed state with simultaneous quantitative mapping of multiple parameters, and data interpretation and analysis. The protocol, which can be completed in 1-3 d, enables researchers to image proteins and protein complexes in the native unperturbed state and to simultaneously map their biophysical and biochemical properties at sub-nanometer resolution.

  14. Addressing the Role of Conformational Diversity in Protein Structure Prediction

    PubMed Central

    Parisi, Gustavo; Fornasari, Maria Silvina

    2016-01-01

    Computational modeling of tertiary structures has become of standard use to study proteins that lack experimental characterization. Unfortunately, 3D structure prediction methods and model quality assessment programs often overlook that an ensemble of conformers in equilibrium populates the native state of proteins. In this work we collected sets of publicly available protein models and the corresponding target structures experimentally solved and studied how they describe the conformational diversity of the protein. For each protein, we assessed the quality of the models against known conformers by several standard measures and identified those models ranked best. We found that model rankings are defined by both the selected target conformer and the similarity measure used. 70% of the proteins in our datasets show that different models are structurally closest to different conformers of the same protein target. We observed that model building protocols such as template-based or ab initio approaches describe in similar ways the conformational diversity of the protein, although for template-based methods this description may depend on the sequence similarity between target and template sequences. Taken together, our results support the idea that protein structure modeling could help to identify members of the native ensemble, highlight the importance of considering conformational diversity in protein 3D quality evaluations and endorse the study of the variability of the native structure for a meaningful biological analysis. PMID:27159429

  15. SYNTHESIS OF PROTEINS BY NATIVE CHEMICAL LIGATION USING FMOC-BASED CHEMISTRY

    SciTech Connect

    Camarero, J A; Mitchell, A R

    2005-01-20

    C-terminal peptide {alpha}-thioesters are valuable intermediates in the synthesis/semisynthesis of proteins by native chemical ligation. They are prepared either by solid-phase peptide synthesis (SPPS) or biosynthetically by protein splicing techniques. The present paper reviews the different methods available for the chemical synthesis of peptide {alpha}-thioesters using Fmoc-based SPPS.

  16. High-resolution structure of the native histone octamer

    SciTech Connect

    Wood, Christopher M.; Nicholson, James M.; Lambert, Stanley J.; Chantalat, Laurent; Reynolds, Colin D.; Baldwin, John P.

    2005-06-01

    The high-resolution (1.90 Å) model of the native histone octamer allows structural comparisons to be made with the nucleosome-core particle, along with an identification of a likely core-histone binding site. Crystals of native histone octamers (H2A–H2B)–(H4–H3)–(H3′–H4′)–(H2B′–H2A′) from chick erythrocytes in 2 M KCl, 1.35 M potassium phosphate pH 6.9 diffract X-rays to 1.90 Å resolution, yielding a structure with an R{sub work} value of 18.7% and an R{sub free} of 22.2%. The crystal space group is P6{sub 5}, the asymmetric unit of which contains one complete octamer. This high-resolution model of the histone-core octamer allows further insight into intermolecular interactions, including water molecules, that dock the histone dimers to the tetramer in the nucleosome-core particle and have relevance to nucleosome remodelling. The three key areas analysed are the H2A′–H3–H4 molecular cluster (also H2A–H3′–H4′), the H4–H2B′ interaction (also H4′–H2B) and the H2A′–H4 β-sheet interaction (also H2A–H4′). The latter of these three regions is important to nucleosome remodelling by RNA polymerase II, as it is shown to be a likely core-histone binding site, and its disruption creates an instability in the nucleosome-core particle. A majority of the water molecules in the high-resolution octamer have positions that correlate to similar positions in the high-resolution nucleosome-core particle structure, suggesting that the high-resolution octamer model can be used for comparative studies with the high-resolution nucleosome-core particle.

  17. What makes a protein a protein? Hydrophobic core designs that specify stability and structural properties.

    PubMed Central

    Munson, M.; Balasubramanian, S.; Fleming, K. G.; Nagi, A. D.; O'Brien, R.; Sturtevant, J. M.; Regan, L.

    1996-01-01

    Here we describe how the systematic redesign of a protein's hydrophobic core alters its structure and stability. We have repacked the hydrophobic core of the four-helix-bundle protein, Rop, with altered packing patterns and various side chain shapes and sizes. Several designs reproduce the structure and native-like properties of the wild-type, while increasing the thermal stability. Other designs, either with similar sizes but different shapes, or with decreased sizes of the packing residues, destabilize the protein. Finally, overpacking the core with the larger side chains causes a loss of native-like structure. These results allow us to further define the roles of tight residue packing and the burial of hydrophobic surface area in the construction of native-like proteins. PMID:8844848

  18. Genome-scale metabolic model of Pichia pastoris with native and humanized glycosylation of recombinant proteins.

    PubMed

    Irani, Zahra Azimzadeh; Kerkhoven, Eduard J; Shojaosadati, Seyed Abbas; Nielsen, Jens

    2016-05-01

    Pichia pastoris is used for commercial production of human therapeutic proteins, and genome-scale models of P. pastoris metabolism have been generated in the past to study the metabolism and associated protein production by this yeast. A major challenge with clinical usage of recombinant proteins produced by P. pastoris is the difference in N-glycosylation of proteins produced by humans and this yeast. However, through metabolic engineering, a P. pastoris strain capable of producing humanized N-glycosylated proteins was constructed. The current genome-scale models of P. pastoris do not address native nor humanized N-glycosylation, and we therefore developed ihGlycopastoris, an extension to the iLC915 model with both native and humanized N-glycosylation for recombinant protein production, but also an estimation of N-glycosylation of P. pastoris native proteins. This new model gives a better prediction of protein yield, demonstrates the effect of the different types of N-glycosylation of protein yield, and can be used to predict potential targets for strain improvement. The model represents a step towards a more complete description of protein production in P. pastoris, which is required for using these models to understand and optimize protein production processes.

  19. Effect of enzymatic hydrolysis on native starch granule structure.

    PubMed

    Blazek, Jaroslav; Gilbert, Elliot Paul

    2010-12-13

    Enzymatic digestion of six starches of different botanical origin was studied in real time by in situ time-resolved small-angle neutron scattering (SANS) and complemented by the analysis of native and digested material by X-ray diffraction, differential scanning calorimetry, small-angle X-ray scattering, and scanning electron microscopy with the aim of following changes in starch granule nanostructure during enzymatic digestion. This range of techniques enables coverage over five orders of length-scale, as is necessary for this hierarchically structured material. Starches studied varied in their digestibility and displayed structural differences in the course of enzymatic digestion. The use of time-resolved SANS showed that solvent-drying of digested residues does not induce any structural artifacts on the length scale followed by small-angle scattering. In the course of digestion, the lamellar peak intensity gradually decreased and low-q scattering increased. These trends were more substantial for A-type than for B-type starches. These observations were explained by preferential digestion of the amorphous growth rings. Hydrolysis of the semicrystalline growth rings was explained on the basis of a liquid-crystalline model for starch considering differences between A-type and B-type starches in the length and rigidity of amylopectin spacers and branches. As evidenced by differing morphologies of enzymatic attack among varieties, the existence of granular pores and channels and physical penetrability of the amorphous growth ring affect the accessibility of the enzyme to the substrate. The combined effects of the granule microstructure and the nanostructure of the growth rings influence the opportunity of the enzyme to access its substrate; as a consequence, these structures determine the enzymatic digestibility of granular starches more than the absolute physical densities of the amorphous growth rings and amorphous and crystalline regions of the semicrystalline

  20. Hierarchical, Self-Similar Structure in Native Squid Pen

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, Fei-Chi; Peters, Robert; Dies, Hannah; Rheinstadter, Maikel

    2014-03-01

    Proteins, chitin and keratin form the elementary building blocks of many biomaterials. How these molecules assemble into larger, macroscopic structures with very different properties is the fundamental question we are trying to answer. Squid pen is a transparent backbone inside the squid, which supports the mantle of the squid. The pens show a hierarchical, self-similar structure under the microscope and the AFM with fibers from 500 μm to 0.2 μm in diameter. The chitin molecules form nano-crystallites of monoclinic lattice symmetry surrounded by a protein layer, resulting in β-chitin nano-fibrils. Signals corresponding to the α-coil protein phase and β-chitin were observed in X-ray experiments in-situ. The molecular structure is highly anisotropic with 90% of the α-coils and β-chitin crystallites oriented along the fiber-axis indicating a strong correlation between the structures on millimeters down to the molecular scale. This research was funded by NSERC, NRC, CFI, and the Ontario Ministry of Economic Development and Innovation.

  1. Improved purification of native meningococcal porin PorB and studies on its structure/function.

    PubMed

    Massari, Paola; King, Carol A; MacLeod, Heather; Wetzler, Lee M

    2005-12-01

    The outer membrane protein PorB of Neisseria meningitidis is a pore-forming protein which has various effects on eukaryotic cells. It has been shown to (1) up-regulate the surface expression of the co-stimulatory molecule CD86 and of MHC class II (which are TLR2/MyD88 dependent and related to the porin's immune-potentiating ability), (2) be involved in prevention of apoptosis by modulating the mitochondrial membrane potential, and (3) form pores in eukaryotic cells. As an outer membrane protein, its native trimeric form isolation is complicated by its insoluble nature, requiring the presence of detergent throughout the whole procedure, and by its tight association with other outer membrane components, such as neisserial LOS or lipoproteins. In this study, an improved chromatographic purification method to obtain an homogeneous product free of endotoxin and lipoprotein is described, without loss of any of the above-mentioned properties of the porin. Furthermore, we have investigated the requirement of the native trimeric structure for the porin's activity. Inactivation of functional PorB trimers into non-functional monomers was achieved by incubation on ice. Thus, routine long- and medium-term storage at low temperature may be a cause of porin inactivation.

  2. Genetic diversity and structure of native and non-native populations of the endangered plant Pinus dabeshanensis.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Z Y; Wang, H; Chen, W; Pang, X M; Li, Y Y

    2016-06-10

    Owing to a severe decline in its abundance, Pinus dabeshanensis has been listed as an endangered species by the International Union for the Conservation of Nature. Although several restoration events have been undertaken since the 1960s, the natural population genetic structure of this species remains to be investigated. Herein, we examined the level of genetic diversity and structure of two native and two non-native populations using 10 microsatellite loci. A relatively high level of genetic variation (HO = 0.586 ± 0.039) and a low level of population differentiation (FST = 0.016 ± 0.011) were revealed. For forensic investigation, an assignment test was performed. To better understand the genetic differentiation between the native and non-native populations, the individuals in the transplanted and cultivated populations may have derived from populations that were not surveyed in this study. In light of our results, we discuss the real problems faced by all four populations and provide useful information for management decision-making.

  3. Eukaryotic expression, purification and structure/function analysis of native, recombinant CRISP3 from human and mouse.

    PubMed

    Volpert, Marianna; Mangum, Jonathan E; Jamsai, Duangporn; D'Sylva, Rebecca; O'Bryan, Moira K; McIntyre, Peter

    2014-02-27

    While the Cysteine-Rich Secretory Proteins (CRISPs) have been broadly proposed as regulators of reproduction and immunity, physiological roles have yet to be established for individual members of this family. Past efforts to investigate their functions have been limited by the difficulty of purifying correctly folded CRISPs from bacterial expression systems, which yield low quantities of correctly folded protein containing the eight disulfide bonds that define the CRISP family. Here we report the expression and purification of native, glycosylated CRISP3 from human and mouse, expressed in HEK 293 cells and isolated using ion exchange and size exclusion chromatography. Functional authenticity was verified by substrate-affinity, native glycosylation characteristics and quaternary structure (monomer in solution). Validated protein was used in comparative structure/function studies to characterise sites and patterns of N-glycosylation in CRISP3, revealing interesting inter-species differences.

  4. Eukaryotic expression, purification and structure/function analysis of native, recombinant CRISP3 from human and mouse

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Volpert, Marianna; Mangum, Jonathan E.; Jamsai, Duangporn; D'Sylva, Rebecca; O'Bryan, Moira K.; McIntyre, Peter

    2014-02-01

    While the Cysteine-Rich Secretory Proteins (CRISPs) have been broadly proposed as regulators of reproduction and immunity, physiological roles have yet to be established for individual members of this family. Past efforts to investigate their functions have been limited by the difficulty of purifying correctly folded CRISPs from bacterial expression systems, which yield low quantities of correctly folded protein containing the eight disulfide bonds that define the CRISP family. Here we report the expression and purification of native, glycosylated CRISP3 from human and mouse, expressed in HEK 293 cells and isolated using ion exchange and size exclusion chromatography. Functional authenticity was verified by substrate-affinity, native glycosylation characteristics and quaternary structure (monomer in solution). Validated protein was used in comparative structure/function studies to characterise sites and patterns of N-glycosylation in CRISP3, revealing interesting inter-species differences.

  5. Structural Correlates for Lexical Efficiency and Number of Languages in Non-Native Speakers of English

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Grogan, A.; Parker Jones, O.; Ali, N.; Crinion, J.; Orabona, S.; Mechias, M. L.; Ramsden, S.; Green, D. W.; Price, C. J.

    2012-01-01

    We used structural magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and voxel based morphometry (VBM) to investigate whether the efficiency of word processing in the non-native language (lexical efficiency) and the number of non-native languages spoken (2+ versus 1) were related to local differences in the brain structure of bilingual and multilingual speakers.…

  6. Blind Test of Physics-Based Prediction of Protein Structures

    PubMed Central

    Shell, M. Scott; Ozkan, S. Banu; Voelz, Vincent; Wu, Guohong Albert; Dill, Ken A.

    2009-01-01

    We report here a multiprotein blind test of a computer method to predict native protein structures based solely on an all-atom physics-based force field. We use the AMBER 96 potential function with an implicit (GB/SA) model of solvation, combined with replica-exchange molecular-dynamics simulations. Coarse conformational sampling is performed using the zipping and assembly method (ZAM), an approach that is designed to mimic the putative physical routes of protein folding. ZAM was applied to the folding of six proteins, from 76 to 112 monomers in length, in CASP7, a community-wide blind test of protein structure prediction. Because these predictions have about the same level of accuracy as typical bioinformatics methods, and do not utilize information from databases of known native structures, this work opens up the possibility of predicting the structures of membrane proteins, synthetic peptides, or other foldable polymers, for which there is little prior knowledge of native structures. This approach may also be useful for predicting physical protein folding routes, non-native conformations, and other physical properties from amino acid sequences. PMID:19186130

  7. The "intracellular" poly(3-hydroxybutyrate) (PHB) depolymerase of Rhodospirillum rubrum is a periplasm-located protein with specificity for native PHB and with structural similarity to extracellular PHB depolymerases.

    PubMed

    Handrick, René; Reinhardt, Simone; Kimmig, Philipp; Jendrossek, Dieter

    2004-11-01

    Rhodospirillum rubrum possesses a putative intracellular poly(3-hydroxybutyrate) (PHB) depolymerase system consisting of a soluble PHB depolymerase, a heat-stable activator, and a 3-hydroxybutyrate dimer hydrolase (J. M. Merrick and M. Doudoroff, J. Bacteriol. 88:60-71, 1964). In this study we reinvestigated the soluble R. rubrum PHB depolymerase (PhaZ1). It turned out that PhaZ1 is a novel type of PHB depolymerase with unique properties. Purified PhaZ1 was specific for amorphous short-chain-length polyhydroxyalkanoates (PHA) such as native PHB, artificial PHB, and oligomer esters of (R)-3-hydroxybutyrate with 3 or more 3-hydroxybutyrate units. Atactic PHB, (S)-3-hydroxybutyrate oligomers, medium-chain-length PHA, and lipase substrates (triolein, tributyrin) were not hydrolyzed. The PHB depolymerase structural gene (phaZ1) was cloned. Its deduced amino acid sequence (37,704 Da) had no significant similarity to those of intracellular PHB depolymerases of Wautersia eutropha or of other PHB-accumulating bacteria. PhaZ1 was found to have strong amino acid homology with type-II catalytic domains of extracellular PHB depolymerases, and Ser(42), Asp(138), and His(178) were identified as catalytic-triad amino acids, with Ser(42) as the putative active site. Surprisingly, the first 23 amino acids of the PHB depolymerase previously assumed to be intracellular revealed features of classical signal peptides, and Edman sequencing of purified PhaZ1 confirmed the functionality of the predicted cleavage site. Extracellular PHB depolymerase activity was absent, and analysis of cell fractions unequivocally showed that PhaZ1 is a periplasm-located enzyme. The previously assumed intracellular activator/depolymerase system is unlikely to have a physiological function in PHB mobilization in vivo. A second gene, encoding the putative true intracellular PHB depolymerase (PhaZ2), was identified in the genome sequence of R. rubrum.

  8. Voltage sensor ring in a native structure of a membrane-embedded potassium channel

    PubMed Central

    Shi, Liang; Zheng, Hongjin; Zheng, Hui; Borkowski, Brian A.; Shi, Dan; Gonen, Tamir; Jiang, Qiu-Xing

    2013-01-01

    Voltage-gated ion channels support electrochemical activity in cells and are largely responsible for information flow throughout the nervous systems. The voltage sensor domains in these channels sense changes in transmembrane potential and control ion flux across membranes. The X-ray structures of a few voltage-gated ion channels in detergents have been determined and have revealed clear structural variations among their respective voltage sensor domains. More recent studies demonstrated that lipids around a voltage-gated channel could directly alter its conformational state in membrane. Because of these disparities, the structural basis for voltage sensing in native membranes remains elusive. Here, through electron-crystallographic analysis of membrane-embedded proteins, we present the detailed view of a voltage-gated potassium channel in its inactivated state. Contrary to all known structures of voltage-gated ion channels in detergents, our data revealed a unique conformation in which the four voltage sensor domains of a voltage-gated potassium channel from Aeropyrum pernix (KvAP) form a ring structure that completely surrounds the pore domain of the channel. Such a structure is named the voltage sensor ring. Our biochemical and electrophysiological studies support that the voltage sensor ring represents a physiological conformation. These data together suggest that lipids exert strong effects on the channel structure and that these effects may be changed upon membrane disruption. Our results have wide implications for lipid–protein interactions in general and for the mechanism of voltage sensing in particular. PMID:23401554

  9. Quantitation of the Noncovalent Cellular Retinol-Binding Protein, Type 1 Complex Through Native Mass Spectrometry

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Wenjing; Yu, Jianshi; Kane, Maureen A.

    2017-01-01

    Native mass spectrometry (MS) has become a valuable tool in probing noncovalent protein-ligand interactions in a sample-efficient way, yet the quantitative application potential of native MS has not been fully explored. Cellular retinol binding protein, type I (CrbpI) chaperones retinol and retinal in the cell, protecting them from nonspecific oxidation and delivering them to biosynthesis enzymes where the bound (holo-) and unbound (apo-) forms of CrbpI exert distinct biological functions. Using nanoelectrospray, we developed a native MS assay for probing apo- and holo-CrbpI abundance to facilitate exploring their biological functions in retinoid metabolism and signaling. The methods were developed on two platforms, an Orbitrap-based Thermo Exactive and a Q-IMS-TOF-based Waters Synapt G2S, where similar ion behaviors under optimized conditions were observed. Overall, our results suggested that within the working range ( 1-10 μM), gas-phase ions in the native state linearly correspond to solution concentration and relative ion intensities of the apo- and holo-protein ions can linearly respond to the solution ratios, suggesting native MS is a viable tool for relative quantitation in this system.

  10. Recombinant proteins incorporating short non-native extensions may display increased aggregation propensity as detected by high resolution NMR spectroscopy

    SciTech Connect

    Zanzoni, Serena; D'Onofrio, Mariapina; Molinari, Henriette; Assfalg, Michael

    2012-10-26

    Highlights: Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Bile acid binding proteins from different constructs retain structural integrity. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer NMR {sup 15}N-T{sub 1} relaxation data of BABPs show differences if LVPR extension is present. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Deviations from a {sup 15}N-T{sub 1}/molecular-weight calibration curve indicate aggregation. -- Abstract: The use of a recombinant protein to investigate the function of the native molecule requires that the former be obtained with the same amino acid sequence as the template. However, in many cases few additional residues are artificially introduced for cloning or purification purposes, possibly resulting in altered physico-chemical properties that may escape routine characterization. For example, increased aggregation propensity without visible protein precipitation is hardly detected by most analytical techniques but its investigation may be of great importance for optimizing the yield of recombinant protein production in biotechnological and structural biology applications. In this work we show that bile acid binding proteins incorporating the common C-terminal LeuValProArg extension display different hydrodynamic properties from those of the corresponding molecules without such additional amino acids. The proteins were produced enriched in nitrogen-15 for analysis via heteronuclear NMR spectroscopy. Residue-specific spin relaxation rates were measured and related to rotational tumbling time and molecular size. While the native-like recombinant proteins show spin-relaxation rates in agreement with those expected for monomeric globular proteins of their mass, our data indicate the presence of larger adducts for samples of proteins with very short amino acid extensions. The used approach is proposed as a further screening method for the quality assessment of biotechnological protein products.

  11. Elucidating the native sources of an invasive tree species, Acacia pycnantha, reveals unexpected native range diversity and structure

    PubMed Central

    Ndlovu, Joice; Richardson, David M.; Wilson, John R. U.; O'Leary, Martin; Le Roux, Johannes J.

    2013-01-01

    Background and Aims Understanding the introduction history of invasive plant species is important for their management and identifying effective host-specific biological control agents. However, uncertain taxonomy, intra- and interspecific hybridization, and cryptic speciation may obscure introduction histories, making it difficult to identify native regions to explore for host-specific agents. The overall aim of this study was to identify the native source populations of Acacia pycnantha, a tree native to south-eastern Australia and invasive in South Africa, Western Australia and Portugal. Using a phylogeographical approach also allowed an exploration of the historical processes that have shaped the genetic structure of A. pycnantha in its native range. Methods Nuclear (nDNA) and plastid DNA sequence data were used in network and tree-building analyses to reconstruct phylogeographical relationships between native and invasive A. pycnantha populations. In addition, mismatch distributions, relative rates and Bayesian analyses were used to infer recent demographic processes and timing of events in Australia that led to population structure and diversification. Key Results The plastid network indicated that Australian populations of A. pycnantha are geographically structured into two informally recognized lineages, the wetland and dryland forms, whereas the nuclear phylogeny showed little geographical structure between these two forms. Moreover, the dryland form of A. pycnantha showed close genetic similarity to the wetland form based on nDNA sequence data. Hybrid zones may explain these findings, supported here by incongruent phylogenetic placement of some of these taxa between nuclear and plastid genealogies. Conclusions It is hypothesized that habitat fragmentation due to cycles of aridity inter-dispersed with periods of abundant rainfall during the Pleistocene (approx. 100 kya) probably gave rise to native dryland and wetland forms of A. pycnantha. Although the

  12. New perspectives for use of native and engineered recombinant food proteins in treatment of food allergy.

    PubMed

    Nowak-Wegrzyn, Anna

    2007-02-01

    Food allergy has emerged as an important target for research on curative treatment and prevention, with most efforts focusing on peanut, cow's milk, and egg allergy. This article reviews the recent developments in the potential treatments for IgE-mediated food allergy using native and engineered recombinant food proteins.

  13. Temperature-Induced Misfolding in Prion Protein: Evidence of Multiple Partially Disordered States Stabilized by Non-Native Hydrogen Bonds.

    PubMed

    Chamachi, Neharika G; Chakrabarty, Suman

    2017-02-14

    The structural basis of pathways of misfolding of a cellular prion (PrP(C)) into the toxic scrapie form (PrP(SC)) and identification of possible intermediates (e.g., PrP*) still eludes us. In this work, we have used a cumulative ∼65 μs of replica exchange molecular dynamics simulation data to construct the conformational free energy landscapes and capture the structural and thermodynamic characteristics associated with various stages of the thermal denaturation process in human prion protein. The temperature-dependent free energy surfaces consist of multiple metastable states stabilized by non-native contacts and hydrogen bonds, thus rendering the protein prone to misfolding. We have been able to identify metastable conformational states with high β-content (∼30-40%) and low α-content (∼10-20%) that might be precursors of PrP(SC) oligomer formation. These conformations also involve participation of the unstructured N-terminal domain, and its role in misfolding has been investigated. All the misfolded or partially unfolded states are quite compact in nature despite having large deviations from the native structure. Although the number of native contacts decreases dramatically at higher temperatures, the radius of gyration and number of intraprotein hydrogen bonds and contacts remain relatively unchanged, leading to stabilization of the misfolded conformations by non-native interactions. Our results are in good agreement with the established view that the C-terminal regions of the second and third helices (H2 and H3, respectively) of mammal prions might be the Achilles heels of their stability, while separation of B1-H1-B2 and H2-H3 domains seems to play a key role, as well.

  14. Peptic and tryptic hydrolysis of native and heated whey protein to reduce its antigenicity.

    PubMed

    Kim, S B; Ki, K S; Khan, M A; Lee, W S; Lee, H J; Ahn, B S; Kim, H S

    2007-09-01

    This study examined the effects of enzymes on the production and antigenicity of native and heated whey protein concentrate (WPC) hydrolysates. Native and heated (10 min at 100 degrees C) WPC (2% protein solution) were incubated at 50 degrees C for 30, 60, 90, and 120 min with 0.1, 0.5, and 1% pepsin and then with 0.1, 0.5, and 1% trypsin on a protein-equivalent basis. A greater degree of hydrolysis was achieved and greater nonprotein nitrogen concentrations were obtained in heated WPC than in native WPC at all incubation times. Hydrolysis of WPC was increased with an increasing level of enzymes and higher incubation times. The highest hydrolysis (25.23%) was observed in heated WPC incubated with 1% pepsin and then with 1% trypsin for 120 min. High molecular weight bands, such as BSA, were completely eliminated from sodium dodecyl sulfate-PAGE of both native and heated WPC hydrolysates produced with pepsin for the 30-min incubation. The alpha-lactalbumin in native WPC was slightly degraded when incubated with 0.1% pepsin and then with 0.1% trypsin; however, it was almost completely hydrolyzed within 60 min of incubation with 0.5% pepsin and then with 0.5% trypsin. Incubation of native WPC with 1% pepsin and then with 1% trypsin for 30 min completely removed the BSA and alpha-lactalbumin. The beta-lactoglobulin in native WPC was not affected by the pepsin and trypsin treatments. The beta-lactoglobulin in heated WPC was partially hydrolyzed by the 0.1 and 0.5% pepsin and trypsin treatments and was completely degraded by the 1% pepsin and trypsin treatment. Antigenicity reversibly mimicked the hydrolysis of WPC and the removal of beta-lactoglobulin from hydrolysates. Antigenicity in heated and native WPC was reduced with an increasing level of enzymes. A low antigenic response was observed in heated WPC compared with native WPC. The lowest antigenicity was observed when heated WPC was incubated with 1% pepsin and then with 1% trypsin. These results suggested that

  15. Protein Production for Structural Genomics Using E. coli Expression

    PubMed Central

    Makowska-Grzyska, Magdalena; Kim, Youngchang; Maltseva, Natalia; Li, Hui; Zhou, Min; Joachimiak, Grazyna; Babnigg, Gyorgy; Joachimiak, Andrzej

    2014-01-01

    The goal of structural biology is to reveal details of the molecular structure of proteins in order to understand their function and mechanism. X-ray crystallography and NMR are the two best methods for atomic level structure determination. However, these methods require milligram quantities of proteins. In this chapter a reproducible methodology for large-scale protein production applicable to a diverse set of proteins is described. The approach is based on protein expression in E. coli as a fusion with a cleavable affinity tag that was tested on over 20,000 proteins. Specifically, a protocol for fermentation of large quantities of native proteins in disposable culture vessels is presented. A modified protocol that allows for the production of selenium-labeled proteins in defined media is also offered. Finally, a method for the purification of His6-tagged proteins on immobilized metal affinity chromatography columns that generates high-purity material is described in detail. PMID:24590711

  16. Three phase partitioning leads to subtle structural changes in proteins.

    PubMed

    Rather, Gulam Mohmad; Gupta, Munishwar Nath

    2013-09-01

    Three phase partitioning consists of precipitation of proteins due to simultaneous presence of ammonium sulphate and t-butanol. The technique has been successfully used for purification and refolding of proteins. There are however indications that the structures of proteins subjected to three phase partitioning are different from native structure of proteins. Taking several proteins, the present work examines the structural changes in proteins by comparing their thermal stabilities, secondary structure contents, surface hydrophobicities, hydrodynamic radii and solubilities in the presence of ammonium sulphate. The results show that while the nature or extent of structural changes may vary, in all the cases the changes are rather subtle and not drastic in nature. Hence, the technique can be safely used for protein purification and refolding.

  17. The Interest Structure of Native American College Students.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hansen, Jo-Ida C.; Scullard, Mark G.; Haviland, Mark G.

    2000-01-01

    Strong Interest Inventory scores of 103 female and 73 male Native American college students were submitted to multidimensional scaling analysis. Results supported the circular order and two-dimensional relationship of career interests. Females' results were more consistent with Holland's hexagonal model than were males' scores. (SK)

  18. Structural mechanisms of nonplanar hemes in proteins

    SciTech Connect

    Shelnutt, J.A.

    1997-05-01

    The objective is to assess the occurrence of nonplanar distortions of hemes and other tetrapyrroles in proteins and to determine the biological function of these distortions. Recently, these distortions were found by us to be conserved among proteins belonging to a functional class. Conservation of the conformation of the heme indicates a possible functional role. Researchers have suggested possible mechanisms by which heme distortions might influence biological properties; however, no heme distortion has yet been shown conclusively to participate in a structural mechanism of hemoprotein function. The specific aims of the proposed work are: (1) to characterize and quantify the distortions of the hemes in all of the more than 300 hemoprotein X-ray crystal structures in terms of displacements along the lowest-frequency normal coordinates, (2) to determine the structural features of the protein component that generate and control these nonplanar distortions by using spectroscopic studies and molecular-mechanics calculations for the native proteins, their mutants and heme-peptide fragments, and model porphyrins, (3) to determine spectroscopic markers for the various types of distortion, and, finally, (4) to discover the functional significance of the nonplanar distortions by correlating function with porphyrin conformation for proteins and model porphyrins.

  19. Structural Genomics of Protein Phosphatases

    SciTech Connect

    Almo,S.; Bonanno, J.; Sauder, J.; Emtage, S.; Dilorenzo, T.; Malashkevich, V.; Wasserman, S.; Swaminathan, S.; Eswaramoorthy, S.; et al

    2007-01-01

    The New York SGX Research Center for Structural Genomics (NYSGXRC) of the NIGMS Protein Structure Initiative (PSI) has applied its high-throughput X-ray crystallographic structure determination platform to systematic studies of all human protein phosphatases and protein phosphatases from biomedically-relevant pathogens. To date, the NYSGXRC has determined structures of 21 distinct protein phosphatases: 14 from human, 2 from mouse, 2 from the pathogen Toxoplasma gondii, 1 from Trypanosoma brucei, the parasite responsible for African sleeping sickness, and 2 from the principal mosquito vector of malaria in Africa, Anopheles gambiae. These structures provide insights into both normal and pathophysiologic processes, including transcriptional regulation, regulation of major signaling pathways, neural development, and type 1 diabetes. In conjunction with the contributions of other international structural genomics consortia, these efforts promise to provide an unprecedented database and materials repository for structure-guided experimental and computational discovery of inhibitors for all classes of protein phosphatases.

  20. A coarse-grained protein force field for folding and structure prediction.

    PubMed

    Maupetit, Julien; Tuffery, P; Derreumaux, Philippe

    2007-11-01

    We have revisited the protein coarse-grained optimized potential for efficient structure prediction (OPEP). The training and validation sets consist of 13 and 16 protein targets. Because optimization depends on details of how the ensemble of decoys is sampled, trial conformations are generated by molecular dynamics, threading, greedy, and Monte Carlo simulations, or taken from publicly available databases. The OPEP parameters are varied by a genetic algorithm using a scoring function which requires that the native structure has the lowest energy, and the native-like structures have energy higher than the native structure but lower than the remote conformations. Overall, we find that OPEP correctly identifies 24 native or native-like states for 29 targets and has very similar capability to the all-atom discrete optimized protein energy model (DOPE), found recently to outperform five currently used energy models.

  1. A Blue Native-PAGE analysis of membrane protein complexes in Clostridium thermocellum

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background Clostridium thermocellum is a Gram-positive thermophilic anaerobic bacterium with the unusual capacity to convert cellulosic biomass into ethanol and hydrogen. Identification and characterization of protein complexes in C. thermocellum are important toward understanding its metabolism and physiology. Results A two dimensional blue native/SDS-PAGE procedure was developed to separate membrane protein complexes of C. thermocellum. Proteins spots were identified by MALDI-TOF/TOF Mass spectrometry. 24 proteins were identified representing 13 distinct protein complexes, including several putative intact complexes. Interestingly, subunits of both the F1-F0-ATP synthase and the V1-V0-ATP synthase were detected in the membrane sample, indicating C. thermocellum may use alternative mechanisms for ATP generation. Conclusion Two dimensional blue native/SDS-PAGE was used to detect membrane protein complexes in C. thermocellum. More than a dozen putative protein complexes were identified, revealing the simultaneous expression of two sets of ATP synthase. The protocol developed in this work paves the way for further functional characterization of these protein complexes. PMID:21269440

  2. Comparison of Replica Exchange Simulations of a Kinetically Trapped Protein Conformational State and its Native Form.

    PubMed

    Olson, Mark A; Legler, Patricia M; Goldman, Ellen R

    2016-03-10

    Recently an X-ray crystallographic structure of a single-domain antibody was reported with the protein chain trapped in a rare homodimeric form. One of the conformers appears to exhibit a misfolded region, and thus presumably the configurational stability is less favorable. To investigate whether simulation methods can detect any difference between the conformers and buttress the notion that one conformation is trapped on a pathway that incurs lower activation energy to unfold, adaptive temperature-based replica exchange simulations were applied to each chain to model conformational transitions. Simulation results found that the observed crystallographic difference between the two chains in the complementarity determining region CDR2 induces a stark distinction in conformational populations on the energy landscape. An appraisal of the energetic difference between the CDR2 conformations at 300 K revealed a localized order-disorder free-energy transition of roughly equivalent to two peptide hydrogen bonds in solution. It was also found that interconversion between the conformers is slower than the rate to unfold and that near an unfolding transition temperature one conformer retained a greater fraction of native-like contacts and energy over a longer time span before fully populating the denatured state, thus verifying the coexistence of a metastable conformation in the crystallographic assembly.

  3. Native capillary isoelectric focusing for the separation of protein complex isoforms and subcomplexes

    PubMed Central

    Fonslow, Bryan R.; Kang, Seong A.; Gestaut, Daniel R.; Graczyk, Beth; Davis, Trisha N.; Sabatini, David M.; Yates, John R.

    2010-01-01

    Here we report the use of capillary isoelectric focusing under native conditions for the separation of protein complex isoforms and subcomplexes. Using biologically relevant HIS-tag and FLAG-tag purified protein complexes, we demonstrate the separations of protein complex isoforms of the mammalian target of rapamycin complex (mTORC1 and 2) and the subcomplexes and different phosphorylation states of the Dam1 complex. The high efficiency capillary isoelectric focusing separation allowed for resolution of protein complexes and subcomplexes similar in size and biochemical composition. By performing separations with native buffers and reduced temperature (15°C) we were able to maintain the complex integrity of the more thermolabile mTORC2 during isoelectric focusing and detection (< 45 min). Increasing the separation temperature allowed us to monitor dissociation of the Dam1 complex into its subcomplexes (25°C) and eventually its individual protein components (30°C). The separation of two different phosphorylation states of the Dam1 complex, generated from an in vitro kinase assay with Mps1 kinase, was straightforward due to the large pI shift upon multiple phosphorylation events. The separation of the protein complex isoforms of mTORC, on the other hand, required the addition of a small pI range (4 – 6.5) of ampholytes to improve resolution and stability of the complexes. We show that native capillary isoelectric focusing is a powerful method for the difficult separations of large, similar, unstable protein complexes. This method shows potential for differentiation of protein complex isoform and subcomplex compositions, post-translational modifications, architectures, stabilities, equilibria, and relative abundances under biologically relevant conditions. PMID:20614870

  4. Nest paper absorbency, toughness, and protein concentration of a native vs. an invasive social wasp.

    PubMed

    Curtis, Tracy R; Aponte, Yaira; Stamp, Nancy E

    2005-05-01

    The amount of proteinaceous food that was allocated to nest construction by a native wasp (Polistes fuscatus) vs. an invasive wasp (Polistes dominulus) in North America was examined following a field experiment under natural and surplus prey foraging conditions. Wasps of the surplus prey foraging conditions were provided with prey ad libitum within an enclosed area, while wasps of the natural treatment foraged in an adjacent field-woodland site. At the end of the field experiment, each nest was tested for water absorbency, toughness, and protein concentration. The hypotheses were: (1) When all nests are equally sheltered, the invasive P. dominulus (PD) allocates less protein to nest paper construction (for waterproofing and strengthening) and more protein to developing larvae than the native P. fuscatus (PF). (2) Nests of P. dominulus are more absorbent (less waterproof) and less tough than nests of P. fuscatus. Results indicate that P. fuscatus nests from surplus prey foraging conditions were more absorbent (less waterproof) to artificial rain drops than P. dominulus nests. The toughness of nests was similar between wasp species. However, nests from the natural treatment were tougher than those from the surplus prey treatment. Nests from the natural foraging conditions had half as much protein as those from surplus prey foraging conditions. There was no correlation between nest protein concentration and the number of prey taken, the number of cells, the number of adult offspring produced, or the total wasp biomass produced per colony. For PF under surplus prey conditions, protein concentration and absorbency were negatively correlated, but for PD the correlation was positive. In conclusion, when prey were scarce, Polistes wasps allocated less protein to nest construction. Also, the introduced P. dominulus may increase production of offspring by allocating less to nest construction than that of the native P. fuscatus, and so more protein to offspring production.

  5. Native capillary isoelectric focusing for the separation of protein complex isoforms and subcomplexes.

    PubMed

    Fonslow, Bryan R; Kang, Seong A; Gestaut, Daniel R; Graczyk, Beth; Davis, Trisha N; Sabatini, David M; Yates, John R

    2010-08-01

    Here we report the use of capillary isoelectric focusing under native conditions for the separation of protein complex isoforms and subcomplexes. Using biologically relevant HIS-tag and FLAG-tag purified protein complexes, we demonstrate the separations of protein complex isoforms of the mammalian target of rapamycin complex (mTORC1 and 2) and the subcomplexes and different phosphorylation states of the Dam1 complex. The high efficiency capillary isoelectric focusing separation allowed for resolution of protein complexes and subcomplexes similar in size and biochemical composition. By performing separations with native buffers and reduced temperature (15 degrees C) we were able to maintain the complex integrity of the more thermolabile mTORC2 during isoelectric focusing and detection (<45 min). Increasing the separation temperature allowed us to monitor dissociation of the Dam1 complex into its subcomplexes (25 degrees C) and eventually its individual protein components (30 degrees C). The separation of two different phosphorylation states of the Dam1 complex, generated from an in vitro kinase assay with Mps1 kinase, was straightforward due to the large pI shift upon multiple phosphorylation events. The separation of the protein complex isoforms of mTORC, on the other hand, required the addition of a small pI range (4-6.5) of ampholytes to improve resolution and stability of the complexes. We show that native capillary isoelectric focusing is a powerful method for the difficult separations of large, similar, unstable protein complexes. This method shows potential for differentiation of protein complex isoform and subcomplex compositions, post-translational modifications, architectures, stabilities, equilibria, and relative abundances under biologically relevant conditions.

  6. Novel glutaredoxin activity of the yeast prion protein Ure2 reveals a native-like dimer within fibrils.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Zai-Rong; Perrett, Sarah

    2009-05-22

    Ure2 is the protein determinant of the Saccharomyces cerevisiae prion [URE3]. Ure2 has structural similarity to glutathione transferases, protects cells against heavy metal and oxidant toxicity in vivo, and shows glutathione-dependent peroxidase activity in vitro. Here we report that Ure2 (which has no cysteine residues) also shows thiol-disulfide oxidoreductase activity similar to that of glutaredoxin enzymes. This demonstrates that disulfide reductase activity can be independent of the classical glutaredoxin CXXC/CXXS motif or indeed an intrinsic catalytic cysteine residue. The kinetics of the glutaredoxin activity of Ure2 showed positive cooperativity for the substrate glutathione in both the soluble native state and in amyloid-like fibrils, indicating native-like dimeric structure within Ure2 fibrils. Characterization of the glutaredoxin activity of Ure2 sheds light on its ability to protect yeast from heavy metal ion and oxidant toxicity and suggests a role in reversible protein glutathionylation signal transduction. Observation of allosteric enzyme behavior within amyloid-like Ure2 fibrils not only provides insight into the molecular structure of the fibrils but also has implications for the mechanism of [URE3] prion formation.

  7. Improved prediction of RNA tertiary structure with insights into native state dynamics.

    PubMed

    Bida, John Paul; Maher, L James

    2012-03-01

    The importance of RNA tertiary structure is evident from the growing number of published high resolution NMR and X-ray crystallographic structures of RNA molecules. These structures provide insights into function and create a knowledge base that is leveraged by programs such as Assemble, ModeRNA, RNABuilder, NAST, FARNA, Mc-Sym, RNA2D3D, and iFoldRNA for tertiary structure prediction and design. While these methods sample native-like RNA structures during simulations, all struggle to capture the native RNA conformation after scoring. We propose RSIM, an improved RNA fragment assembly method that preserves RNA global secondary structure while sampling conformations. This approach enhances the quality of predicted RNA tertiary structure, provides insights into the native state dynamics, and generates a powerful visualization of the RNA conformational space. RSIM is available for download from http://www.github.com/jpbida/rsim.

  8. Native electrospray mass spectrometry reveals the nature and stoichiometry of pigments in the FMO photosynthetic antenna protein.

    PubMed

    Wen, Jianzhong; Zhang, Hao; Gross, Michael L; Blankenship, Robert E

    2011-05-03

    The nature and stoichiometry of pigments in the Fenna-Matthews-Olson (FMO) photosynthetic antenna protein complex were determined by native electrospray mass spectrometry. The FMO antenna complex was the first chlorophyll-containing protein that was crystallized. Previous results indicate that the FMO protein forms a trimer with seven bacteriochlorophyll a in each monomer. This model has long been a working basis to understand the molecular mechanism of energy transfer through pigment/pigment and pigment/protein coupling. Recent results have suggested, however, that an eighth bacteriochlorophyll is present in some subunits. In this report, a direct mass spectrometry measurement of the molecular weight of the intact FMO protein complex clearly indicates the existence of an eighth pigment, which is assigned as a bacteriochlorophyll a by mass analysis of the complex and HPLC analysis of the pigment. The eighth pigment is found to be easily lost during purification, which results in its partial occupancy in the mass spectra of the intact complex prepared by different procedures. The results are consistent with the recent X-ray structural models. The existence of the eighth bacteriochlorophyll a in this model antenna protein gives new insights into the functional role of the FMO protein and motivates the need for new theoretical and spectroscopic assignments of spectral features of the FMO protein.

  9. Native Electrospray Mass Spectrometry Reveals the Nature and Stoichiometry of Pigments in the FMO Photosynthetic Antenna Protein

    SciTech Connect

    Wen, Jianzhong; Zhang, Hao; Gross, Michael L; Blankenship, R. E.

    2011-05-03

    The nature and stoichiometry of pigments in the Fenna–Matthews–Olson (FMO) photosynthetic antenna protein complex were determined by native electrospray mass spectrometry. The FMO antenna complex was the first chlorophyll-containing protein that was crystallized. Previous results indicate that the FMO protein forms a trimer with seven bacteriochlorophyll a in each monomer. This model has long been a working basis to understand the molecular mechanism of energy transfer through pigment/pigment and pigment/protein coupling. Recent results have suggested, however, that an eighth bacteriochlorophyll is present in some subunits. In this report, a direct mass spectrometry measurement of the molecular weight of the intact FMO protein complex clearly indicates the existence of an eighth pigment, which is assigned as a bacteriochlorophyll a by mass analysis of the complex and HPLC analysis of the pigment. The eighth pigment is found to be easily lost during purification, which results in its partial occupancy in the mass spectra of the intact complex prepared by different procedures. The results are consistent with the recent X-ray structural models. The existence of the eighth bacteriochlorophyll a in this model antenna protein gives new insights into the functional role of the FMO protein and motivates the need for new theoretical and spectroscopic assignments of spectral features of the FMO protein.

  10. Influence of Alkylammonium Acetate Buffers on Protein-Ligand Noncovalent Interactions Using Native Mass Spectrometry

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhuang, Xiaoyu; Gavriilidou, Agni F. M.; Zenobi, Renato

    2017-02-01

    We investigate the influence of three volatile alkylammonium acetate buffers on binding affinities for protein-ligand interactions determined by native electrospray ionization-mass spectrometry (ESI-MS). Four different types of proteins were chosen for this study. A charge-reduction effect was observed for all the cases studied, in comparison to the ions formed in ammonium acetate solution. When increasing the collision energy, the complexes of trypsin and the ligand were found to be more stable when sprayed from alkylammonium acetate buffers than from ammonium acetate. The determined dissociation constant (Kd) also exhibited a drop (up to 40%) when ammonium acetate was replaced by alkylammonium acetate buffers for the case of lysozyme and the ligand. The prospective uses of these ammonium acetate analogs in native ESI-MS are discussed in this paper as well.

  11. Gradual disordering of the native state on a slow two-state folding protein monitored by single-molecule fluorescence spectroscopy and NMR.

    PubMed

    Campos, Luis A; Sadqi, Mourad; Liu, Jianwei; Wang, Xiang; English, Douglas S; Muñoz, Victor

    2013-10-24

    Theory predicts that folding free energy landscapes are intrinsically malleable and as such are expected to respond to perturbations in topographically complex ways. Structural changes upon perturbation have been observed experimentally for unfolded ensembles, folding transition states, and fast downhill folding proteins. However, the native state of proteins that fold in a two-state fashion is conventionally assumed to be structurally invariant during unfolding. Here we investigate how the native and unfolded states of the chicken α-spectrin SH3 domain (a well characterized slow two-state folder) change in response to chemical denaturants and/or temperature. We can resolve the individual properties of the two end-states across the chemical unfolding transition employing single-molecule fluorescence spectroscopy (SM-FRET) and across the thermal unfolding transition by NMR because SH3 folds-unfolds in the slow chemical exchange regime. Our results demonstrate that α-spectrin SH3 unfolds in a canonical way in the sense that it converts between the native state and an unfolded ensemble that expands in response to chemical denaturants. However, as conditions become increasingly destabilizing, the native state also expands gradually, and a large fraction of its native intramolecular hydrogen bonds break up. This gradual disordering of the native state takes place in times shorter than the 100 μs resolution of our SM-FRET experiments. α-Spectrin SH3 thus showcases the extreme plasticity of folding landscapes, which extends to the native state of slow two-state proteins. Our results point to the idea that folding mechanisms under physiological conditions might be quite different from those obtained by linear extrapolation from denaturing conditions. Furthermore, they highlight a pressing need for re-evaluating the conventional procedures for analyzing and interpreting folding experiments, which may be based on too-simplistic assumptions.

  12. Influences of heterogeneous native contact energy and many-body interactions on the prediction of protein folding mechanisms.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Zhuqing; Ouyang, Yanhua; Chen, Tao

    2016-11-16

    Since single-point mutant perturbation has been used to probe protein folding mechanisms in experiments, the ϕ-value has become a critical parameter to infer the transition state (TS) for two-state proteins. Experimentally, large scale analysis has shown a nearly single uniform ϕ-value with normally distributed error from 24 different proteins; moreover, in zero stability conditions, the intrinsic variable ϕ(0) is around 0.36. To explore how and to what extent theoretical models can capture experimental phenomena, we here use structure-based explicit chain coarse-grained models to investigate the influence of single-point mutant perturbation on protein folding for single domain two-state proteins. Our results indicate that uniform, additive contact energetic interactions cannot predict experimental Brønsted plots well. Those points deviate largely from the main data sets in Brønsted plots, are mostly hydrophobic, and are located in N- and C-terminal contacting regions. Heterogenous contact energy, which is dependent on sequence separation, can narrow the point dispersion in a Brønsted plot. Moreover, we demonstrate that combining many-body interactions with heterogeneous native contact energy can present mean ϕ-values consistent with experimental findings, with a comparable distributed error. This indicates that for more accurate elucidation of protein folding mechanisms by residue-level structure-based models, these elements should be considered.

  13. Structure of giant muscle proteins

    PubMed Central

    Meyer, Logan C.; Wright, Nathan T.

    2013-01-01

    Giant muscle proteins (e.g., titin, nebulin, and obscurin) play a seminal role in muscle elasticity, stretch response, and sarcomeric organization. Each giant protein consists of multiple tandem structural domains, usually arranged in a modular fashion spanning 500 kDa to 4 MDa. Although many of the domains are similar in structure, subtle differences create a unique function of each domain. Recent high and low resolution structural and dynamic studies now suggest more nuanced overall protein structures than previously realized. These findings show that atomic structure, interactions between tandem domains, and intrasarcomeric environment all influence the shape, motion, and therefore function of giant proteins. In this article we will review the current understanding of titin, obscurin, and nebulin structure, from the atomic level through the molecular level. PMID:24376425

  14. BAYESIAN PROTEIN STRUCTURE ALIGNMENT1

    PubMed Central

    RODRIGUEZ, ABEL; SCHMIDLER, SCOTT C.

    2015-01-01

    The analysis of the three-dimensional structure of proteins is an important topic in molecular biochemistry. Structure plays a critical role in defining the function of proteins and is more strongly conserved than amino acid sequence over evolutionary timescales. A key challenge is the identification and evaluation of structural similarity between proteins; such analysis can aid in understanding the role of newly discovered proteins and help elucidate evolutionary relationships between organisms. Computational biologists have developed many clever algorithmic techniques for comparing protein structures, however, all are based on heuristic optimization criteria, making statistical interpretation somewhat difficult. Here we present a fully probabilistic framework for pairwise structural alignment of proteins. Our approach has several advantages, including the ability to capture alignment uncertainty and to estimate key “gap” parameters which critically affect the quality of the alignment. We show that several existing alignment methods arise as maximum a posteriori estimates under specific choices of prior distributions and error models. Our probabilistic framework is also easily extended to incorporate additional information, which we demonstrate by including primary sequence information to generate simultaneous sequence–structure alignments that can resolve ambiguities obtained using structure alone. This combined model also provides a natural approach for the difficult task of estimating evolutionary distance based on structural alignments. The model is illustrated by comparison with well-established methods on several challenging protein alignment examples. PMID:26925188

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

    SciTech Connect

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

    2009-10-21

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

  16. Crystal structure of native RPE65, the retinoid isomerase of the visual cycle

    SciTech Connect

    Kiser, Philip D.; Golczak, Marcin; Lodowski, David T.; Chance, Mark R.; Palczewski, Krzysztof

    2009-12-01

    Vertebrate vision is maintained by the retinoid (visual) cycle, a complex enzymatic pathway that operates in the retina to regenerate the visual chromophore, 11-cis-retinal. A key enzyme in this pathway is the microsomal membrane protein RPE65. This enzyme catalyzes the conversion of all-trans-retinyl esters to 11-cis-retinol in the retinal pigment epithelium (RPE). Mutations in RPE65 are known to be responsible for a subset of cases of the most common form of childhood blindness, Leber congenital amaurosis (LCA). Although retinoid isomerase activity has been attributed to RPE65, its catalytic mechanism remains a matter of debate. Also, the manner in which RPE65 binds to membranes and extracts retinoid substrates is unclear. To gain insight into these questions, we determined the crystal structure of native bovine RPE65 at 2.14-{angstrom} resolution. The structural, biophysical, and biochemical data presented here provide the framework needed for an in-depth understanding of the mechanism of catalytic isomerization and membrane association, in addition to the role mutations that cause LCA have in disrupting protein function.

  17. Colony social structure in native and invasive populations of the social wasp Vespula pensylvanica

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hanna, Cause; Cook, Erin D.; Thompson, Ariel R.; Dare, Lyndzey E.; Palaski, Amanda L.; Foote, David; Goodisman, Michael A. D.

    2014-01-01

    Social insects rank among the most invasive of terrestrial species. The success of invasive social insects stems, in part, from the flexibility derived from their social behaviors. We used genetic markers to investigate if the social system of the invasive wasp, Vespula pensylvanica, differed in its introduced and native habitats in order to better understand variation in social phenotype in invasive social species. We found that (1) nestmate workers showed lower levels of relatedness in introduced populations than native populations, (2) introduced colonies contained workers produced by multiple queens whereas native colonies contained workers produced by only a single queen, (3) queen mate number did not differ significantly between introduced and native colonies, and (4) workers from introduced colonies were frequently produced by queens that originated from foreign nests. Thus, overall, native and introduced colonies differed substantially in social phenotype because introduced colonies more frequently contained workers produced by multiple, foreign queens. In addition, the similarity in levels of genetic variation in introduced and native habitats, as well as observed variation in colony social phenotype in native populations, suggest that colony structure in invasive populations may be partially associated with social plasticity. Overall, the differences in social structure observed in invasive V. pensylvanica parallel those in other, distantly related invasive social insects, suggesting that insect societies often develop similar social phenotypes upon introduction into new habitats.

  18. Understanding the structural ensembles of a highly extended disordered protein.

    PubMed

    Daughdrill, Gary W; Kashtanov, Stepan; Stancik, Amber; Hill, Shannon E; Helms, Gregory; Muschol, Martin; Receveur-Bréchot, Véronique; Ytreberg, F Marty

    2012-01-01

    Developing a comprehensive description of the equilibrium structural ensembles for intrinsically disordered proteins (IDPs) is essential to understanding their function. The p53 transactivation domain (p53TAD) is an IDP that interacts with multiple protein partners and contains numerous phosphorylation sites. Multiple techniques were used to investigate the equilibrium structural ensemble of p53TAD in its native and chemically unfolded states. The results from these experiments show that the native state of p53TAD has dimensions similar to a classical random coil while the chemically unfolded state is more extended. To investigate the molecular properties responsible for this behavior, a novel algorithm that generates diverse and unbiased structural ensembles of IDPs was developed. This algorithm was used to generate a large pool of plausible p53TAD structures that were reweighted to identify a subset of structures with the best fit to small angle X-ray scattering data. High weight structures in the native state ensemble show features that are localized to protein binding sites and regions with high proline content. The features localized to the protein binding sites are mostly eliminated in the chemically unfolded ensemble; while, the regions with high proline content remain relatively unaffected. Data from NMR experiments support these results, showing that residues from the protein binding sites experience larger environmental changes upon unfolding by urea than regions with high proline content. This behavior is consistent with the urea-induced exposure of nonpolar and aromatic side-chains in the protein binding sites that are partially excluded from solvent in the native state ensemble.

  19. Slide preparation for single-cell-resolution imaging of fluorescent proteins in their three-dimensional near-native environment.

    PubMed

    Snippert, Hugo J; Schepers, Arnout G; Delconte, Gabriele; Siersema, Peter D; Clevers, Hans

    2011-07-28

    In recent years, many mouse models have been developed to mark and trace the fate of adult cell populations using fluorescent proteins. High-resolution visualization of such fluorescent markers in their physiological setting is thus an important aspect of adult stem cell research. Here we describe a protocol to produce sections (150-200 μm) of near-native tissue with optimal tissue and cellular morphology by avoiding artifacts inherent in standard freezing or embedding procedures. The activity of genetically expressed fluorescent proteins is maintained, thereby enabling high-resolution three-dimensional (3D) reconstructions of fluorescent structures in virtually all types of tissues. The procedure allows immunofluorescence labeling of proteins to depths up to 50 μm, as well as a chemical 'Click-iT' reaction to detect DNA-intercalating analogs such as ethynyl deoxyuridine (EdU). Generation of near-native sections ready for imaging analysis takes approximately 2-3 h. Postsectioning processes, such as antibody labeling or EdU detection, take up to 10 h.

  20. NMR Structures of Membrane Proteins in Phospholipid Bilayers

    PubMed Central

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

    2014-01-01

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

  1. Detection and analysis of protein-protein interactions in organellar and prokaryotic proteomes by native gel electrophoresis: (Membrane) protein complexes and supercomplexes.

    PubMed

    Krause, Frank

    2006-07-01

    It is an essential and challenging task to unravel protein-protein interactions in their actual in vivo context. Native gel systems provide a separation platform allowing the analysis of protein complexes on a rather proteome-wide scale in a single experiment. This review focus on blue-native (BN)-PAGE as the most versatile and successful gel-based approach to separate soluble and membrane protein complexes of intricate protein mixtures derived from all biological sources. BN-PAGE is a charge-shift method with a running pH of 7.5 relying on the gentle binding of anionic CBB dye to all membrane and many soluble protein complexes, leading to separation of protein species essentially according to their size and superior resolution than other fractionation techniques can offer. The closely related colorless-native (CN)-PAGE, whose applicability is restricted to protein species with intrinsic negative net charge, proved to provide an especially mild separation capable of preserving weak protein-protein interactions better than BN-PAGE. The essential conditions determining the success of detecting protein-protein interactions are the sample preparations, e.g. the efficiency/mildness of the detergent solubilization of membrane protein complexes. A broad overview about the achievements of BN- and CN-PAGE studies to elucidate protein-protein interactions in organelles and prokaryotes is presented, e.g. the mitochondrial protein import machinery and oxidative phosphorylation supercomplexes. In many cases, solubilization with digitonin was demonstrated to facilitate an efficient and particularly gentle extraction of membrane protein complexes prone to dissociation by treatment with other detergents. In general, analyses of protein interactomes should be carried out by both BN- and CN-PAGE.

  2. Molecular modeling and conformational analysis of native and refolded viral genome-linked protein of cardamom mosaic virus.

    PubMed

    Jebasingh, T; Jose, M; Yadunandam, A Kasin; Backiyarani, S; Srividhya, K V; Krishnaswamy, S; Usha, R

    2011-10-01

    The viral genome-linked protein (VPg) of Potyviruses is covalently attached to the 5' end of the genomic RNA. Towards biophysical characterization, the VPg coding region of Cardamom mosaic virus (CdMV) was amplified from the cDNA and expressed in E. coli. Most of the expressed VPg aggregated as inclusion bodies that were solubilized with urea and refolded with L-arginine hydrochloride. The various forms of CdMV VPg (native, denatured and refolded) were purified and the conformational variations between these forms were observed with fluorescence spectroscopy. Native and refolded CdMV VPg showed unordered secondary structure in the circular dichroism (CD) spectrum. The model of CdMV VPg was built based on the crystal structure of phosphotriesterase (from Pseudomonas diminuta), which had the maximum sequence homology with VPg to identify the arrangement of conserved amino acids in the protein to study the functional diversity of VPg. This is the first report on the VPg of CdMV, which is classified as a new member of the Macluravirus genus of the Potyviridae family.

  3. A Historical Perspective and Overview of Protein Structure Prediction

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wooley, John C.; Ye, Yuzhen

    Carrying on many different biological functions, proteins are all composed of one or more polypeptide chains, each containing from several to hundreds or even thousands of the 20 amino acids. During the 1950s at the dawn of modern biochemistry, an essential question for biochemists was to understand the structure and function of these polypeptide chains. The sequences of protein, also referred to as their primary structures, determine the different chemical properties for different proteins, and thus continue to captivate much of the attention of biochemists. As an early step in characterizing protein chemistry, British biochemist Frederick Sanger designed an experimental method to identify the sequence of insulin (Sanger et al., 1955). He became the first person to obtain the primary structure of a protein and in 1958 won his first Nobel Price in Chemistry. This important progress in sequencing did not answer the question of whether a single (individual) protein has a distinctive shape in three dimensions (3D), and if so, what factors determine its 3D architecture. However, during the period when Sanger was studying the primary structure of proteins, American biochemist Christian Anfinsen observed that the active polypeptide chain of a model protein, bovine pancreatic ribonuclease (RNase), could fold spontaneously into a unique 3D structure, which was later called native conformation of the protein (Anfinsen et al., 1954). Anfinsen also studied the refolding of RNase enzyme and observed that an enzyme unfolded under extreme chemical environment could refold spontaneously back into its native conformation upon changing the environment back to natural conditions (Anfinsen et al., 1961). By 1962, Anfinsen had developed his theory of protein folding (which was summarized in his 1972 Nobel acceptance speech): "The native conformation is determined by the totality of interatomic interactions and hence, by the amino acid sequence, in a given environment."

  4. Synthesis of thioester peptides for the incorporation of thioamides into proteins by native chemical ligation‡

    PubMed Central

    Batjargal, Solongo; Huang, Yun; Wang, Yanxin J.; Petersson, E. James

    2014-01-01

    Thioamides can be used as photoswitches, as reporters of local environment, as inhibitors of enzymes, and as fluorescence quenchers. We have recently demonstrated the incorporation of thioamides into polypeptides and proteins using native chemical ligation (NCL). In this protocol, we describe procedures for the synthesis of a thioamide precursor and an NCL-ready thioamide-containing peptide using Dawson’s N-acyl-benzimidazolinone (Nbz) process. We include a description of the synthesis by NCL of a thioamide-labeled fragment of the neuronal protein α-synuclein. PMID:24408658

  5. [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.

  6. Photoinduced structural changes to protein kinase A

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rozinek, Sarah C.; Thomas, Robert J.; Brancaleon, Lorenzo

    2014-03-01

    The importance of porphyrins in organisms is underscored by the ubiquitous biological and biochemical functions that are mediated by these compounds and by their potential biomedical and biotechnological applications. Protoporphyrin IX (PPIX) is the precursor to heme and has biomedical applications such as its use as a photosensitizer in phototherapy and photodetection of cancer. Among other applications, our group has demonstrated that low-irradiance exposure to laser irradiation of PPIX, Fe-PPIX, or meso-tetrakis (4-sulfonatophenyl) porphyrin (TSPP) non-covalently docked to a protein causes conformational changes in the polypeptide. Such approach can have remarkable consequences in the study of protein structure/function relationship and can be used to prompt non-native protein properties. Therefore we have investigated protein kinase A (PKA), a more relevant protein model towards the photo-treatment of cancer. PKA's enzymatic functions are regulated by the presence of cyclic adenosine monophosphate for intracellular signal transduction involved in, among other things, stimulation of transcription, tumorigenesis in Carney complex and migration of breast carcinoma cells. Since phosphorylation is a necessary step in some cancers and inflammatory diseases, inhibiting the protein kinase, and therefore phosphorylation, may serve to treat these diseases. Changes in absorption, steady-state fluorescence, and fluorescence lifetime indicate: 1) both TSPP and PPIX non-covalently bind to PKA where they maintain photoreactivity; 2) absorptive photoproduct formation occurs only when PKA is bound to TSPP and irradiated; and 3) PKA undergoes secondary structural changes after irradiation with either porphyrin bound. These photoinduced changes could affect the protein's enzymatic and signaling capabilities.

  7. Production and characterization of a panel of monoclonal antibodies against native human cellular prion protein.

    PubMed

    Jones, Michael; McLoughlin, Victoria; Connolly, John G; Farquhar, Christine F; MacGregor, Ian R; Head, Mark W

    2009-02-01

    The human prion diseases, such as variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (vCJD), are characterized by the conversion of the normal cellular prion protein (PrP(C)) into an abnormal disease associated form (PrP(Sc)). Monoclonal antibodies (MAbs) that recognize these different PrP isoforms are valuable reagents both in the diagnosis of these diseases and in prion disease research in general but we know of no attempts to raise MAbs against native human PrP(C). We immunized prion protein gene ablated (PrP(-/-)) mice with native human PrP(C) purified from platelets (pHuPrP) generating a predominantly IgG isotype anti-pHuPrP polyclonal antibody response in all mice. Following fusion of splenocytes from the immunized mice with SP2/0 myeloma cells, we were able to identify single cell clone and cryopreserve 14 stable hybridoma cell lines producing MAbs that reacted with pHuPrP. The properties of these MAbs (such as isotype, binding to native/denatured pHuPrP, and HuPrP epitopes recognized) are described. Furthermore, several of these MAbs showed a selectivity in their ability to immunoprecipitate disease associated PrP(Sc) and its corresponding protease resistant core (PrP(res)).

  8. Assembly of protein tertiary structures from secondary structures using optimized potentials.

    PubMed

    Hoang, Trinh Xuan; Seno, Flavio; Banavar, Jayanth R; Cieplak, Marek; Maritan, Amos

    2003-08-01

    We present a simulated annealing-based method for the prediction of the tertiary structures of proteins given knowledge of the secondary structure associated with each amino acid in the sequence. The backbone is represented in a detailed fashion whereas the sidechains and pairwise interactions are modeled in a simplified way, following the LINUS model of Srinivasan and Rose. A perceptron-based technique is used to optimize the interaction potentials for a training set of three proteins. For these proteins, the procedure is able to reproduce the tertiary structures to below 3 A in root mean square deviation (rmsd) from the PDB targets. We present the results of tests on twelve other proteins. For half of these, the lowest energy decoy has a rmsd from the native state below 6 A and, in 9 out of 12 cases, we obtain decoys whose rmsd from the native states are also well below 5 A.

  9. Analyzing modifiers of protein aggregation in C. elegans by native agarose gel electrophoresis.

    PubMed

    Holmberg, Mats; Nollen, Ellen A A

    2013-01-01

    The accumulation of specific aggregation-prone proteins during aging is thought to be involved in several diseases, most notably Alzheimer's and Parkinson's disease as well as polyglutamine expansion disorders such as Huntington's disease. Caenorhabditis elegans disease models with transgenic expression of fluorescently tagged aggregation-prone proteins have been used to screen for genetic modifiers of aggregation. To establish the role of modifying factors in the generation of aggregation intermediates, a method has been developed using native agarose gel electrophoresis (NAGE) that enables parallel screening of aggregation patterns of fluorescently labeled aggregation-prone proteins. Together with microscopy-based genetic screens this method can be used to identify modifiers of protein aggregation and characterize their molecular function. Although described here for analyzing aggregates in C. elegans, NAGE can be adjusted for use in other model organisms as well as for cultured cells.

  10. Structural inferences for the native skeletal muscle sodium channel as derived from patterns of endogenous proteolysis

    SciTech Connect

    Kraner, S.; Yang, J.; Barchi, R. )

    1989-08-05

    The alpha subunit (Mr approximately 260,000) of the rat skeletal muscle sodium channel is sensitive to cleavage by endogenous proteases during the isolation of muscle surface membrane. Antisera against synthetic oligopeptides were used to map the resultant fragments in order to identify protease-sensitive regions of the channel's structure in its native membrane environment. Antibodies to the amino terminus labeled major fragments of Mr approximately 130,000 and 90,000 and lesser amounts of other peptides as small as Mr approximately 12,000. Antisera to epitopes within the carboxyl-terminal half of the primary sequence recognized two fragments of Mr approximately 110,000 and 78,000. Individual antisera also selectively labeled smaller polypeptides in the most extensively cleaved preparations. The immunoreactivity patterns of monoclonal antibodies previously raised against the purified channel were then surveyed. The binding sites for one group of monoclonals, including several that recognize subtype-specific epitopes in the channel structure, were localized within a 12-kDa fragment near the amino terminus. The distribution of carbohydrate along the primary structure of the channel was also assessed by quantitating {sup 125}I-wheat germ agglutinin and 125I-concanavalin A binding to the proteolytic peptides. Most of the carbohydrate detected by these lectins was located between 22 and 90 kDa from the amino terminus of the protein. No lectin binding was detected to fragments arising from carboxyl-terminal half of the protein. These results were analyzed in terms of current models of sodium channel tertiary structure. In its normal membrane environment, the skeletal muscle sodium channel appears sensitive to cleavage by endogenous proteases in regions predicted to link the four repeat domains on the cytoplasmic side of the membrane while the repeat domains themselves are resistant to proteolysis.

  11. Structural complexity of macroalgae influences epifaunal assemblages associated with native and invasive species.

    PubMed

    Veiga, Puri; Rubal, Marcos; Sousa-Pinto, Isabel

    2014-10-01

    Habitat structure is a primary factor determining the organism distribution. Here, two native and one invasive macroalgal species, apparently different in morphology, were sampled to examine the effects of habitat complexity on the abundance (N), taxon richness (S) and structure of their associated epifaunal assemblages by means of univariate and multivariate techniques. Dry weight and fractal measures were used as proxies of habitat quantity and habitat architecture respectively. Results revealed significant differences in the complexity and in N, S and the structure of epifaunal assemblages among macroalgae and significant correlations between complexity and epifauna. Results suggested that, beside the effect of habitat quantity, the habitat architecture also seems to play a significant role in shaping epifaunal assemblages. Complexity of the studied invasive macroalga significantly differed from that of native species and hosted also different assemblages. Therefore, our findings suggest that invasive macroalgae, if structurally different from native species, induce changes in the associated epifauna.

  12. MAGGIE Component 1: Identification and Purification of Native and Recombinant Multiprotein Complexes and Modified Proteins from Pyrococcus furiosus

    SciTech Connect

    Adams, Michael W.; W. W. Adams, Michael

    2014-01-07

    Virtualy all cellular processes are carried out by dynamic molecular assemblies or multiprotein complexes (PCs), the composition of which is largely unknown. Structural genomics efforts have demonstrated that less than 25% of the genes in a given prokaryotic genome will yield stable, soluble proteins when expressed using a one-ORF-at-a-time approach. We proposed that much of the remaining 75% of the genes encode proteins that are part of multiprotein complexes or are modified post-translationally, for example, with metals. The problem is that PCs and metalloproteins (MPs) cannot be accurately predicted on a genome-wide scale. The only solution to this dilemma is to experimentally determine PCs and MPs in biomass of a model organism and to develop analytical tools that can then be applied to the biomass of any other organism. In other words, organisms themselves must be analyzed to identify their PCs and MPs: “native proteomes” must be determined. This information can then be utilized to design multiple ORF expression systems to produce recombinant forms of PCs and MPs. Moreover, the information and utility of this approach can be enhanced by using a hyperthermophile, one that grows optimally at 100°C, as a model organism. By analyzing the native proteome at close to 100 °C below the optimum growth temperature, we will trap reversible and dynamic complexes, thereby enabling their identification, purification, and subsequent characterization. The model organism for the current study is Pyrococcus furiosus, a hyperthermophilic archaeon that grows optimally at 100°C. It is grown up to 600-liter scale and kg quantities of biomass are available. In this project we identified native PCs and MPs using P. furiosus biomass (with MS/MS analyses to identify proteins by component 4). In addition, we provided samples of abundant native PCs and MPs for structural characterization (using SAXS by component 5). We also designed and evaluated generic bioinformatics and

  13. How main-chains of proteins explore the free-energy landscape in native states.

    PubMed

    Senet, Patrick; Maisuradze, Gia G; Foulie, Colette; Delarue, Patrice; Scheraga, Harold A

    2008-12-16

    Understanding how a single native protein diffuses on its free-energy landscape is essential to understand protein kinetics and function. The dynamics of a protein is complex, with multiple relaxation times reflecting a hierarchical free-energy landscape. Using all-atom molecular dynamics simulations of an alpha/beta protein (crambin) and a beta-sheet polypeptide (BS2) in their "native" states, we demonstrate that the mean-square displacement of dihedral angles, defined by 4 successive C(alpha) atoms, increases as a power law of time, t(alpha), with an exponent alpha between 0.08 and 0.39 (alpha = 1 corresponds to Brownian diffusion), at 300 K. Residues with low exponents are located mainly in well-defined secondary elements and adopt 1 conformational substate. Residues with high exponents are found in loops/turns and chain ends and exist in multiple conformational substates, i.e., they move on multiple-minima free-energy profiles.

  14. Recombinant chymosin used for exact and complete removal of a prochymosin derived fusion tag releasing intact native target protein

    PubMed Central

    Justesen, Sune F L; Lamberth, Kasper; Nielsen, Lise-Lotte B; Schafer-Nielsen, Claus; Buus, Søren

    2009-01-01

    Fusion tags add desirable properties to recombinant proteins, but they are not necessarily acceptable in the final products. Ideally, fusion tags should be removed releasing the intact native protein with no trace of the tag. Unique endoproteinases with the ability to cleave outside their own recognition sequence can potentially cleave at the boundary of any native protein. Chymosin was recently shown to cleave a pro-chymosin derived fusion tag releasing native target proteins. In our hands, however, not all proteins are chymosin-resistant under the acidic cleavage conditions (pH 4.5) used in this system. Here, we have modified the pro-chymosin fusion tag and demonstrated that chymosin can remove this tag at more neutral pH (pH 6.2); conditions, that are less prone to compromise the integrity of target proteins. Chymosin was successfully used to produce intact native target protein both at the level of small and large-scale preparations. Using short peptide substrates, we further examined the influence of P1′ amino acid (the N-terminus of the native target protein) and found that chymosin accepts many different, although not all, amino acids. We conclude that chymosin has several appealing characteristics for the exact removal of fusion tags. It is readily available in highly purified recombinant versions approved by the FDA for preparation of food for human consumption. We suggest that one should consider extending the use of chymosin to the preparation of pharmaceutical proteins. PMID:19388053

  15. FlexAID: Revisiting Docking on Non-Native-Complex Structures.

    PubMed

    Gaudreault, Francis; Najmanovich, Rafael J

    2015-07-27

    Small-molecule protein docking is an essential tool in drug design and to understand molecular recognition. In the present work we introduce FlexAID, a small-molecule docking algorithm that accounts for target side-chain flexibility and utilizes a soft scoring function, i.e. one that is not highly dependent on specific geometric criteria, based on surface complementarity. The pairwise energy parameters were derived from a large dataset of true positive poses and negative decoys from the PDBbind database through an iterative process using Monte Carlo simulations. The prediction of binding poses is tested using the widely used Astex dataset as well as the HAP2 dataset, while performance in virtual screening is evaluated using a subset of the DUD dataset. We compare FlexAID to AutoDock Vina, FlexX, and rDock in an extensive number of scenarios to understand the strengths and limitations of the different programs as well as to reported results for Glide, GOLD, and DOCK6 where applicable. The most relevant among these scenarios is that of docking on flexible non-native-complex structures where as is the case in reality, the target conformation in the bound form is not known a priori. We demonstrate that FlexAID, unlike other programs, is robust against increasing structural variability. FlexAID obtains equivalent sampling success as GOLD and performs better than AutoDock Vina or FlexX in all scenarios against non-native-complex structures. FlexAID is better than rDock when there is at least one critical side-chain movement required upon ligand binding. In virtual screening, FlexAID results are lower on average than those of AutoDock Vina and rDock. The higher accuracy in flexible targets where critical movements are required, intuitive PyMOL-integrated graphical user interface and free source code as well as precompiled executables for Windows, Linux, and Mac OS make FlexAID a welcome addition to the arsenal of existing small-molecule protein docking methods.

  16. Blood-brain barrier transport of cationized immunoglobulin G: Enhanced delivery compared to native protein

    SciTech Connect

    Triguero, D.; Buciak, J.B.; Yang, J.; Pardridge, W.M.

    1989-06-01

    IgG molecules are potential neuropharmaceuticals that may be used for therapeutic or diagnostic purposes. However, IgG molecules are excluded from entering brain, owing to a lack of transport of these plasma proteins through the brain capillary wall, or blood-brain barrier (BBB). The possibility of enhanced IgG delivery through the BBB by cationization of the proteins was explored in the present studies. Native bovine IgG molecules were cationized by covalent coupling of hexamethylenediamine and the isoelectric point was raised to greater than 10.7 based on isoelectric focusing studies. Native and cationized IgG molecules were radiolabeled with /sup 125/I and chloramine T. Cationized IgG, but not native IgG, was rapidly taken up by isolated bovine brain microvessels, which were used as an in vitro model system of the BBB. Cationized IgG binding was time and temperature dependent and was saturated by increasing concentrations of unlabeled cationized IgG (dissociation constant of the high-affinity binding site, 0.90 +/- 0.37 microM; Bmax, 1.4 +/- 0.4 nmol per mg of protein). In vivo studies documented enhanced brain uptake of 125I-labeled cationized IgG relative to (3H)albumin, and complete transcytosis of the 125I-labeled cationized IgG molecule through the BBB and into brain parenchyma was demonstrated by thaw-mount autoradiography of frozen sections of rat brain obtained after carotid arterial infusions of 125I-labeled cationized IgG. These studies demonstrate that cationization of IgG molecules greatly facilitates the transport of these plasma proteins through the BBB in vivo, and this process may provide a new strategy for IgG delivery through the BBB.

  17. Blood-Brain Barrier Transport of Cationized Immunoglobulin G: Enhanced Delivery Compared to Native Protein

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Triguero, Domingo; Buciak, Jody B.; Yang, Jing; Pardridge, William M.

    1989-06-01

    IgG molecules are potential neuropharmaceuticals that may be used for therapeutic or diagnostic purposes. However, IgG molecules are excluded from entering brain, owing to a lack of transport of these plasma proteins through the brain capillary wall, or blood-brain barrier (BBB). The possibility of enhanced IgG delivery through the BBB by cationization of the proteins was explored in the present studies. Native bovine IgG molecules were cationized by covalent coupling of hexamethylenediamine and the isoelectric point was raised to >10.7 based on isoelectric focusing studies. Native and cationized IgG molecules were radiolabeled with 125I and chloramine T. Cationized IgG, but not native IgG, was rapidly taken up by isolated bovine brain microvessels, which were used as an in vitro model system of the BBB. Cationized IgG binding was time and temperature dependent and was saturated by increasing concentrations of unlabeled cationized IgG (dissociation constant of the high-affinity binding site, 0.90 ± 0.37 μ M; Bmax, 1.4 ± 0.4 nmol per mg of protein). In vivo studies documented enhanced brain uptake of 125I-labeled cationized IgG relative to [3H]albumin, and complete transcytosis of the 125I-labeled cationized IgG molecule through the BBB and into brain parenchyma was demonstrated by thaw-mount autoradiography of frozen sections of rat brain obtained after carotid arterial infusions of 125I-labeled cationized IgG. These studies demonstrate that cationization of IgG molecules greatly facilitates the transport of these plasma proteins through the BBB in vivo, and this process may provide a new strategy for IgG delivery through the BBB.

  18. A novel approach to decoy set generation: designing a physical energy function having local minima with native structure characteristics.

    PubMed

    Keasar, Chen; Levitt, Michael

    2003-05-23

    We suggest a new approach to the generation of candidate structures (decoys) for ab initio prediction of protein structures. Our method is based on random sampling of conformation space and subsequent local energy minimization. At the core of this approach lies the design of a novel type of energy function. This energy function has local minima with native structure characteristics and wide basins of attraction. The current work presents our motivation for deriving such an energy function and also tests the derived energy function. Our approach is novel in that it takes advantage of the inherently rough energy landscape of proteins, which is generally considered a major obstacle for protein structure prediction. When local minima have wide basins of attraction, the protein's conformation space can be greatly reduced by the convergence of large regions of the space into single points, namely the local minima corresponding to these funnels. We have implemented this concept by an iterative process. The potential is first used to generate decoy sets and then we study these sets of decoys to guide further development of the potential. A key feature of our potential is the use of cooperative multi-body interactions that mimic the role of the entropic and solvent contributions to the free energy. The validity and value of our approach is demonstrated by applying it to 14 diverse, small proteins. We show that, for these proteins, the size of conformation space is considerably reduced by the new energy function. In fact, the reduction is so substantial as to allow efficient conformational sampling. As a result we are able to find a significant number of near-native conformations in random searches performed with limited computational resources.

  19. Structural correlates for lexical efficiency and number of languages in non-native speakers of English.

    PubMed

    Grogan, A; Parker Jones, O; Ali, N; Crinion, J; Orabona, S; Mechias, M L; Ramsden, S; Green, D W; Price, C J

    2012-06-01

    We used structural magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and voxel based morphometry (VBM) to investigate whether the efficiency of word processing in the non-native language (lexical efficiency) and the number of non-native languages spoken (2+ versus 1) were related to local differences in the brain structure of bilingual and multilingual speakers. We dissociate two different correlates for non-native language processing. Firstly, multilinguals who spoke 2 or more non-native languages had higher grey matter density in the right posterior supramarginal gyrus compared to bilinguals who only spoke one non-native language. This is interpreted in relation to previous studies that have shown that grey matter density in this region is related to the number of words learnt in bilinguals relative to monolinguals and in monolingual adolescents with high versus low vocabulary. Our second result was that, in bilinguals, grey matter density in the left pars opercularis was positively related to lexical efficiency in second language use, as measured by the speed and accuracy of lexical decisions and the number of words produced in a timed verbal fluency task. Grey matter in the same region was also negatively related to the age at which the second language was acquired. This is interpreted in terms of previous findings that associated the left pars opercularis with phonetic expertise in the native language.

  20. Native flagellin does not protect mice against an experimental Proteus mirabilis ascending urinary tract infection and neutralizes the protective effect of MrpA fimbrial protein.

    PubMed

    Scavone, Paola; Umpiérrez, Ana; Rial, Analía; Chabalgoity, José A; Zunino, Pablo

    2014-06-01

    Proteus mirabilis expresses several virulence factors including MR/P fimbriae and flagella. Bacterial flagellin has frequently shown interesting adjuvant and protective properties in vaccine formulations. However, native P. mirabilis flagellin has not been analyzed so far. Native P. mirabilis flagellin was evaluated as a protective antigen and as an adjuvant in co-immunizations with MrpA (structural subunit of MR/P fimbriae) using an ascending UTI model in the mouse. Four groups of mice were intranasally treated with either MrpA, native flagellin, both proteins and PBS. Urine and blood samples were collected before and after immunization for specific antibodies determination. Cytokine production was assessed in immunized mice splenocytes cultures. Mice were challenged with P. mirabilis, and bacteria quantified in kidneys and bladders. MrpA immunization induced serum and urine specific anti-MrpA antibodies while MrpA coadministered with native flagellin did not. None of the animals developed significant anti-flagellin antibodies. Only MrpA-immunized mice showed a significant decrease of P. mirabilis in bladders and kidneys. Instead, infection levels in MrpA-flagellin or flagellin-treated mice showed no significant differences with the control group. IL-10 was significantly induced in splenocytes of mice that received native flagellin or MrpA-flagellin. Native P. mirabilis flagellin did not protect mice against an ascending UTI. Moreover, it showed an immunomodulatory effect, neutralizing the protective role of MrpA. P. mirabilis flagellin exhibits particular immunological properties compared to other bacterial flagellins.

  1. Insights into native epitopes of proliferating cell nuclear antigen using recombinant DNA protein products

    PubMed Central

    1990-01-01

    A cDNA clone encoding full-length human proliferating cell nuclear antigen (PCNA) was used to generate a panel of in vitro translated labeled protein products with COOH-terminal deletions and to construct a set of fusion proteins with COOH- and NH2-terminal deletions. A rabbit antiserum raised against an NH2-terminal peptide, a well- characterized murine monoclonal antibody (mAb), and 14 human lupus sera with autoantibody to PCNA were analyzed for their reactivity with the constructs using both immunoprecipitation and immunoblotting techniques. The rabbit antiserum reacted in immunoprecipitation and immunoblotting with constructs containing the appropriate NH2-terminal sequence and mAb reacted with a sequence from the midregion of PCNA. These experimentally induced antibodies also reacted with 15-mer synthetic peptides in enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). In contrast, none of the lupus sera reacted with synthetic peptides in ELISA. 9 of the 14 lupus sera also failed to react in Western immunoblotting with any recombinant fusion protein, although they all immunoprecipitated in vitro translated full-length protein. Four of the nine had variable patterns of immunoprecipitation with shorter constructs. The remaining five lupus sera were able to immunoprecipitate translation products as well as Western blot recombinant fusion proteins. From analysis of the patterns of reactivity of human lupus sera, it was deduced that the apparent heterogeneity of human autoantibodies to PCNA could be explained by immune response to highly conformational epitopes. These observations demonstrate that there might be special features in "native" epitopes of intranuclear antigens that are recognized by autoantibodies, and that these special features of native epitopes might not be present in prepared antigen used for experimental immunization. These features may be related to protein folding or to association of the antigen with other intranuclear proteins or nucleic acids, as

  2. Native disulfide bonds in plasma retinol-binding protein are not essential for all-trans-retinol-binding activity.

    PubMed

    Reznik, Gabriel O; Yu, Yong; Tarr, George E; Cantor, Charles R

    2003-01-01

    A human plasma retinol-binding protein (RBP) mutant, named RBP-S, has been designed and produced in which the six native cysteine residues, involved in the formation of three disulfide bonds, have been replaced with serine. A hexa-histidine tag was also added to the C-terminus of RBP for ease of purification. The removal of the disulfide bonds led to a decrease in the affinity of RBP for all trans-retinol. Data indicates all-trans-retinol binds RBP and RBP-S with Kd = 4 x 10(-8) M and 1 x 10(-7) M, respectively, at approximately 20 degrees C. RBP-S has reduced stability as compared to natural RBP below pH 8.0 and at room temperature. Circular dichroism in the far-UV shows that there is a relaxation of the RBP structure upon the removal of its disulfide bonds. Circular dichroism in the near-UV shows that in the absence of the disulfide bonds, the optical activity of RBP is higher in the 310-330 nm than in the 280-290 nm range. This work suggests that the three native disulfide bonds aid in the folding of RBP but are not essential to produce a soluble, active protein.

  3. Structural Symmetry in Membrane Proteins.

    PubMed

    Forrest, Lucy R

    2015-01-01

    Symmetry is a common feature among natural systems, including protein structures. A strong propensity toward symmetric architectures has long been recognized for water-soluble proteins, and this propensity has been rationalized from an evolutionary standpoint. Proteins residing in cellular membranes, however, have traditionally been less amenable to structural studies, and thus the prevalence and significance of symmetry in this important class of molecules is not as well understood. In the past two decades, researchers have made great strides in this area, and these advances have provided exciting insights into the range of architectures adopted by membrane proteins. These structural studies have revealed a similarly strong bias toward symmetric arrangements, which were often unexpected and which occurred despite the restrictions imposed by the membrane environment on the possible symmetry groups. Moreover, membrane proteins disproportionately contain internal structural repeats resulting from duplication and fusion of smaller segments. This article discusses the types and origins of symmetry in membrane proteins and the implications of symmetry for protein function.

  4. Structural and functional analysis of native peroxiredoxin 2 in human red blood cells.

    PubMed

    Ogasawara, Yuki; Ohminato, Takuya; Nakamura, Yusuke; Ishii, Kazuyuki

    2012-07-01

    Peroxiredoxin 2, a typical 2-Cys peroxiredoxin, is the third most abundant protein in erythrocytes. It is understood that the physiologically functional state of peroxiredoxin 2 is the monomer, and that its role in scavenging low levels of H(2)O(2) results in the formation of disulfide-linked dimers, which are reversibly reduced to monomers by the thioredoxin-thioredoxin reductase system. Additionally, peroxiredoxins are highly susceptible to sulfinic acid formation through reactions with various peroxides. This overoxidized form, which is thought to convert peroxiredoxins into molecular chaperones and to be accompanied by a transition to polymeric forms, can be reversed by sulfiredoxins. However, physiological conformational changes and the antioxidant role of erythrocyte peroxiredoxin 2 are still unclear because there is low sulfiredoxin and thioredoxin-thioredoxin reductase activity in erythrocytes. In this study, we examined the structural and redox states of peroxiredoxin 2 in fresh hemolysates and estimated the activities of native and overoxidized peroxiredoxin 2 purified from red blood cells to clear the physiological roles of peroxiredoxin 2 in erythrocyte. Our findings demonstrate that native peroxiredoxin 2 exists as high molecular weight (>160 kDa) oligomers and that decamers or higher order molecular weight oligomers (260-460 kDa) have peroxidase activity. We further showed that peroxiredoxin 2 oligomers, which were predominantly composed of monomers in the reduced form, exert a chaperone activity equal to that of overoxidized peroxiredoxin 2 polymers. These results provide the novel insight that redox-active peroxiredoxin 2 functions in human red blood cells as high molecular weight oligomers that possess peroxidase and chaperone activities.

  5. Small heat shock proteins sequester misfolding proteins in near-native conformation for cellular protection and efficient refolding

    PubMed Central

    Ungelenk, Sophia; Moayed, Fatemeh; Ho, Chi-Ting; Grousl, Tomas; Scharf, Annette; Mashaghi, Alireza; Tans, Sander; Mayer, Matthias P.; Mogk, Axel; Bukau, Bernd

    2016-01-01

    Small heat shock proteins (sHsp) constitute an evolutionary conserved yet diverse family of chaperones acting as first line of defence against proteotoxic stress. sHsps coaggregate with misfolded proteins but the molecular basis and functional implications of these interactions, as well as potential sHsp specific differences, are poorly explored. In a comparative analysis of the two yeast sHsps, Hsp26 and Hsp42, we show in vitro that model substrates retain near-native state and are kept physically separated when complexed with either sHsp, while being completely unfolded when aggregated without sHsps. Hsp42 acts as aggregase to promote protein aggregation and specifically ensures cellular fitness during heat stress. Hsp26 in contrast lacks aggregase function but is superior in facilitating Hsp70/Hsp100-dependent post-stress refolding. Our findings indicate the sHsps of a cell functionally diversify in stress defence, but share the working principle to promote sequestration of misfolding proteins for storage in native-like conformation. PMID:27901028

  6. Caring for our own: the role of institutionalized support structures in Native American nursing student success.

    PubMed

    Cech, Erin A; Metz, Anneke M; Babcock, Tracy; Smith, Jessi L

    2011-09-01

    In this project, the authors asked 19 Native American baccalaureate nursing students to discuss their experiences with a formal institutionalized student support program called "Caring for Our Own: A Reservation/University Partnership Program." The authors investigated the importance of different types of support structures within this program, as viewed by Native American nursing students. They distinguished between four institutionalized support structures: tangible, informational, emotional, and belonging. The authors found that students consider tangible support (such as stipends) to be comparatively less important than other types of support, particularly emotional and belonging support. Responses also revealed the importance of a fifth type of institutionalized support-motivational. The authors further discuss how these institutionalized support structures might lead to successful outcomes for Native American nursing students.

  7. Structural state of native molybdenum in the lunar regolith

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mokhov, A. V.; Gornostaeva, T. A.; Kartashov, P. M.; Bogatikov, O. A.; Sakharov, O. A.; Trubkin, N. V.

    2016-11-01

    The structural state was determined for zero-valence molybdenum in the lunar regolith. The body- and face-centered molybdenum forms (BCC and FCC, respectively) were identified. Disruption of the structure down to complete amorphization was noted. This might be caused by the long-term influence of the solar wind.

  8. Oxidative modification of native protein residues using cerium(IV) ammonium nitrate.

    PubMed

    Seim, Kristen L; Obermeyer, Allie C; Francis, Matthew B

    2011-10-26

    A new protein modification strategy has been developed that is based on an oxidative coupling reaction that targets electron-rich amino acids. This strategy relies on cerium(IV) ammonium nitrate (CAN) as an oxidation reagent and results in the coupling of tyrosine and tryptophan residues to phenylene diamine and anisidine derivatives. The methodology was first identified and characterized on peptides and small molecules, and was subsequently adapted for protein modification by determining appropriate buffer conditions. Using the optimized procedure, native and introduced solvent-accessible residues on proteins were selectively modified with polyethylene glycol (PEG) and small peptides. This unprecedented bioconjugation strategy targets these under-utilized amino acids with excellent chemoselectivity and affords good-to-high yields using low concentrations of the oxidant and coupling partners, short reaction times, and mild conditions.

  9. The structure of Lactobacillus brevis surface layer reassembled on liposomes differs from native structure as revealed by SAXS.

    PubMed

    Kontro, Inkeri; Wiedmer, Susanne K; Hynönen, Ulla; Penttilä, Paavo A; Palva, Airi; Serimaa, Ritva

    2014-08-01

    The reassembly of the S-layer protein SlpA of Lactobacillus brevis ATCC 8287 on positively charged liposomes was studied by small angle X-ray scattering (SAXS) and zeta potential measurements. SlpA was reassembled on unilamellar liposomes consisting of 1-palmitoyl-2-oleyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphocholine and 1,2-dioleoyl-3-trimethylammonium-propane, prepared by extrusion through membranes with pore sizes of 50nm and 100nm. Similarly extruded samples without SlpA were used as a reference. The SlpA-containing samples showed clear diffraction peaks in their SAXS intensities. The lattice constants were calculated from the diffraction pattern and compared to those determined for SlpA on native cell wall fragments. Lattice constants for SlpA reassembled on liposomes (a=9.29nm, b=8.03nm, and γ=84.9°) showed a marked change in the lattice constants b and γ when compared to those determined for SlpA on native cell wall fragments (a=9.41nm, b=6.48nm, and γ=77.0°). The latter are in good agreement with values previously determined by electron microscopy. This indicates that the structure formed by SlpA is stable on the bacterial cell wall, but SlpA reassembles into a different structure on cationic liposomes. From the (10) reflection, the lower limit of crystallite size of SlpA on liposomes was determined to be 92nm, corresponding to approximately ten aligned lattice planes.

  10. MNF, an ankyrin repeat protein of myxoma virus, is part of a native cellular SCF complex during viral infection.

    PubMed

    Blanié, Sophie; Gelfi, Jacqueline; Bertagnoli, Stéphane; Camus-Bouclainville, Christelle

    2010-03-08

    Myxoma virus (MYXV), a member of the Poxviridae family, is the agent responsible for myxomatosis, a fatal disease in the European rabbit (Oryctolagus cuniculus). Like all poxviruses, MYXV is known for encoding multiple proteins that regulate cellular signaling pathways. Among them, four proteins share the same ANK/PRANC structure: M148R, M149R, MNF (Myxoma Nuclear factor) and M-T5, all of them described as virulence factors. This family of poxvirus proteins, recently identified, has drawn considerable attention for its potential role in modulating the host ubiquitin-proteasome system during viral infection. To date, many members of this novel protein family have been shown to interact with SCF components, in vitro. Here, we focus on MNF gene, which has been shown to express a nuclear protein presenting nine ANK repeats, one of which has been identified as a nuclear localization signal. In transfection, MNF has been shown to colocalise with the transcription factor NF-kappaB in the nucleus of TNFalpha-stimulated cells. Functionally, MNF is a critical virulence factor since its deletion generates an almost apathogenic virus. In this study, to pursue the investigation of proteins interacting with MNF and of its mechanism of action, we engineered a recombinant MYXV expressing a GFP-linked MNF under the control of MNF native promoter. Infection of rabbits with MYXV-GFPMNF recombinant virus provided the evidence that the GFP fusion does not disturb the main function of MNF. Hence, cells were infected with MYXV-GFPMNF and immunoprecipitation of the GFPMNF fusion protein was performed to identify MNF's partners. For the first time, endogenous components of SCF (Cullin-1 and Skp1) were co-precipitated with an ANK myxoma virus protein, expressed in an infectious context, and without over-expression of any protein.

  11. Post-Assembly Functionalization of Supramolecular Nanostructures with Bioactive Peptides and Fluorescent Proteins by Native Chemical Ligation

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    Post-assembly functionalization of supramolecular nanostructures has the potential to expand the range of their applications. We report here the use of the chemoselective native chemical ligation (NCL) reaction to functionalize self-assembled peptide amphiphile (PA) nanofibers. This strategy can be used to incorporate specific bioactivity on the nanofibers, and as a model, we demonstrate functionalization with the RGDS peptide following self-assembly. Incorporation of bioactivity is verified by the observation of characteristic changes in fibroblast morphology following NCL-mediated attachment of the signal to PA nanofibers. The NCL reaction does not alter the PA nanofiber morphology, and biotinylated RGDS peptide was found to be accessible on the nanofiber surface after ligation for binding with streptavidin-conjugated gold nanoparticles. In order to show that this strategy is not limited to short peptides, we utilized NCL to conjugate yellow fluorescent protein and/or cyan fluorescent protein to self-assembled PA nanofibers. Förster resonance energy transfer and fluorescence anisotropy measurements are consistent with the immobilization of the protein on the PA nanofibers. The change in electrophoretic mobility of the protein upon conjugation with PA molecules confirmed the formation of a covalent linkage. NCL-mediated attachment of bioactive peptides and proteins to self-assembled PA nanofibers allows the independent control of self-assembly and bioactivity while retaining the biodegradable peptide structure of the PA molecule and thus can be useful in tailoring design of biomaterials. PMID:24670265

  12. Nonspecific native elution of proteins and mumps virus in immunoaffinity chromatography.

    PubMed

    Brgles, Marija; Sviben, Dora; Forčić, Dubravko; Halassy, Beata

    2016-05-20

    Immunoaffinity chromatography, based on the antigen-antibody recognition, enables specific purification of any antigen (protein, virus) by its antibody. The problem with immunoaffinity chromatography is the harsh elution conditions required for disrupting strong antigen-antibody interactions, such as low pH buffers, which are often deleterious for the immobilized protein and the protein to be isolated since they can also disrupt the intramolecular forces. Therefore, immunoaffinity chromatography can only be partially used for protein and virus purification. Here we report on a nonspecific elution in immunoaffinity chromatography using native conditions by elution with amino acid solution at physiological pH for which we suppose possible competing mechanism of action. Elution potential of various amino acid solutions was tested using immunoaffinity columns specific for ovalbumin and mumps virus, and protein G affinity column. Results have shown that the most successful elution solutions were those containing imidazole and arginine of high molarity. Imidazole represents aromatic residues readily found at the antigen-antibody interaction surface and arginine is most frequently found on protein surface in general. Therefore, results on their eluting power in immunoaffinity chromatography, which increases with increasing molarity, are in line with the competing mechanism of action. Virus immunoaffinity chromatography resulted in removal on nonviable virus particles, which is important for research and biotechnology purposes. In addition, amino acids are proven stabilizers for proteins and viruses making approach presented in this work a very convenient purification method.

  13. Mapping local structural perturbations in the native state of stefin B (cystatin B) under amyloid forming conditions

    PubMed Central

    Paramore, Robert; Morgan, Gareth J.; Davis, Peter J.; Sharma, Carrie-anne; Hounslow, Andrea; Taler-Verčič, Ajda; Žerovnik, Eva; Waltho, Jonathan P.; Cliff, Matthew J.; Staniforth, Rosemary A.

    2012-01-01

    Unlike a number of amyloid-forming proteins, stefins, and in particular stefin B (cystatin B) form amyloids under conditions where the native state predominates. In order to trigger oligomerization processes, the stability of the protein needs to be compromised, favoring structural re-arrangement however, accelerating fibril formation is not a simple function of protein stability. We report here on how optimal conditions for amyloid formation lead to the destabilization of dimeric and tetrameric states of the protein in favor of the monomer. Small, highly localized structural changes can be mapped out that allow us to visualize directly areas of the protein which eventually become responsible for triggering amyloid formation. These regions of the protein overlap with the Cu (II)-binding sites which we identify here for the first time. We hypothesize that in vivo modulators of amyloid formation may act similarly to painstakingly optimized solvent conditions developed in vitro. We discuss these data in the light of current structural models of stefin B amyloid fibrils based on H-exchange data, where the detachment of the helical part and the extension of loops were observed. PMID:23091450

  14. Protein structure prediction and potential energy landscape analysis using continuous global minimization

    SciTech Connect

    Dill, K.A.; Phillips, A.T.; Rosen, J.B.

    1997-12-01

    Proteins require specific three-dimensional conformations to function properly. These {open_quotes}native{close_quotes} conformations result primarily from intramolecular interactions between the atoms in the macromolecule, and also intermolecular interactions between the macromolecule and the surrounding solvent. Although the folding process can be quite complex, the instructions guiding this process are specified by the one-dimensional primary sequence of the protein or nucleic acid: external factors, such as helper (chaperone) proteins, present at the time of folding have no effect on the final state of the protein. Many denatured proteins spontaneously refold into functional conformations once denaturing conditions are removed. Indeed, the existence of a unique native conformation, in which residues distant in sequence but close in proximity exhibit a densely packed hydrophobic core, suggests that this three-dimensional structure is largely encoded within the sequential arrangement of these specific amino acids. In any case, the native structure is often the conformation at the global minimum energy. In addition to the unique native (minimum energy) structure, other less stable structures exist as well, each with a corresponding potential energy. These structures, in conjunction with the native structure, make up an energy landscape that can be used to characterize various aspects of the protein structure. 22 refs., 10 figs., 2 tabs.

  15. Native FKBP12 engineering by ligand-directed tosyl chemistry: labeling properties and application to photo-cross-linking of protein complexes in vitro and in living cells.

    PubMed

    Tamura, Tomonori; Tsukiji, Shinya; Hamachi, Itaru

    2012-02-01

    The ability to modify target "native" (endogenous) proteins selectively in living cells with synthetic molecules should provide powerful tools for chemical biology. To this end, we recently developed a novel protein labeling technique termed ligand-directed tosyl (LDT) chemistry. This method uses labeling reagents in which a protein ligand and a synthetic probe are connected by a tosylate ester group. We previously demonstrated its applicability to the selective chemical labeling of several native proteins in living cells and mice. However, many fundamental features of this chemistry remain to be studied. In this work, we investigated the relationship between the LDT reagent structure and labeling properties by using native FK506-binding protein 12 (FKBP12) as a target protein. In vitro experiments revealed that the length and rigidity of the spacer structure linking the protein ligand and the tosylate group have significant effects on the overall labeling yield and labeling site. In addition to histidine, which we reported previously, tyrosine and glutamate residues were identified as amino acids that are modified by LDT-mediated labeling. Through the screening of various spacer structures, piperazine was found to be optimal for FKBP12 labeling in terms of labeling efficiency and site specificity. Using a piperazine-based LDT reagent containing a photoreactive probe, we successfully demonstrated the labeling and UV-induced covalent cross-linking of FKBP12 and its interacting proteins in vitro and in living cells. This study not only furthers our understanding of the basic reaction properties of LDT chemistry but also extends the applicability of this method to the investigation of biological processes in mammalian cells.

  16. Protein interfacial structure and nanotoxicology

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    White, John W.; Perriman, Adam W.; McGillivray, Duncan J.; Lin, Jhih-Min

    2009-02-01

    Here we briefly recapitulate the use of X-ray and neutron reflectometry at the air-water interface to find protein structures and thermodynamics at interfaces and test a possibility for understanding those interactions between nanoparticles and proteins which lead to nanoparticle toxicology through entry into living cells. Stable monomolecular protein films have been made at the air-water interface and, with a specially designed vessel, the substrate changed from that which the air-water interfacial film was deposited. This procedure allows interactions, both chemical and physical, between introduced species and the monomolecular film to be studied by reflectometry. The method is briefly illustrated here with some new results on protein-protein interaction between β-casein and κ-casein at the air-water interface using X-rays. These two proteins are an essential component of the structure of milk. In the experiments reported, specific and directional interactions appear to cause different interfacial structures if first, a β-casein monolayer is attacked by a κ-casein solution compared to the reverse. The additional contrast associated with neutrons will be an advantage here. We then show the first results of experiments on the interaction of a β-casein monolayer with a nanoparticle titanium oxide sol, foreshadowing the study of the nanoparticle "corona" thought to be important for nanoparticle-cell wall penetration.

  17. Competitive advantage and higher fitness in native populations of genetically structured planktonic diatoms.

    PubMed

    Sildever, Sirje; Sefbom, Josefin; Lips, Inga; Godhe, Anna

    2016-12-01

    It has been shown that the planktonic diatom Skeletonema from neighbouring areas are genetically differentiated despite absence of physical dispersal barriers. We revisited two sites, Mariager Fjord and Kattegat, NE Atlantic, and isolated new strains. Microsatellite genotyping and F-statistics revealed that the populations were genetically differentiated. An experiment was designed to investigate if populations are locally adapted and have a native competitive advantage. Ten strains from each location were grown individually in native and foreign water to investigate differences in produced biomass. Additionally, we mixed six pairs, one strain from each site, and let them grow together in native and foreign water. Strains from Mariager Fjord and Kattegat produced higher biomass in native water. In the competition experiment, strains from both sites displayed higher relative abundance and demonstrated competitive advantage in their native water. The cause of the differentiated growth is unknown, but could possibly be attributed to differences in silica concentration or viruses in the two water types. Our data show that dispersal potential does not influence the genetic structure of the populations. We conclude that genetic adaptation has not been overruled by gene flow, but instead the responses to different selection conditions are enforcing the observed genetic structure.

  18. Structural reconstruction of protein ancestry.

    PubMed

    Rouet, Romain; Langley, David B; Schofield, Peter; Christie, Mary; Roome, Brendan; Porebski, Benjamin T; Buckle, Ashley M; Clifton, Ben E; Jackson, Colin J; Stock, Daniela; Christ, Daniel

    2017-03-29

    Ancestral protein reconstruction allows the resurrection and characterization of ancient proteins based on computational analyses of sequences of modern-day proteins. Unfortunately, many protein families are highly divergent and not suitable for sequence-based reconstruction approaches. This limitation is exemplified by the antigen receptors of jawed vertebrates (B- and T-cell receptors), heterodimers formed by pairs of Ig domains. These receptors are believed to have evolved from an extinct homodimeric ancestor through a process of gene duplication and diversification; however molecular evidence has so far remained elusive. Here, we use a structural approach and laboratory evolution to reconstruct such molecules and characterize their interaction with antigen. High-resolution crystal structures of reconstructed homodimeric receptors in complex with hen-egg white lysozyme demonstrate how nanomolar affinity binding of asymmetrical antigen is enabled through selective recruitment and structural plasticity within the receptor-binding site. Our results provide structural evidence in support of long-held theories concerning the evolution of antigen receptors, and provide a blueprint for the experimental reconstruction of protein ancestry in the absence of phylogenetic evidence.

  19. Structure and Age Jointly Influence Rates of Protein Evolution

    PubMed Central

    Toll-Riera, Macarena; Bostick, David; Albà, M. Mar; Plotkin, Joshua B.

    2012-01-01

    What factors determine a protein's rate of evolution are actively debated. Especially unclear is the relative role of intrinsic factors of present-day proteins versus historical factors such as protein age. Here we study the interplay of structural properties and evolutionary age, as determinants of protein evolutionary rate. We use a large set of one-to-one orthologs between human and mouse proteins, with mapped PDB structures. We report that previously observed structural correlations also hold within each age group – including relationships between solvent accessibility, designabililty, and evolutionary rates. However, age also plays a crucial role: age modulates the relationship between solvent accessibility and rate. Additionally, younger proteins, despite being less designable, tend to evolve faster than older proteins. We show that previously reported relationships between age and rate cannot be explained by structural biases among age groups. Finally, we introduce a knowledge-based potential function to study the stability of proteins through large-scale computation. We find that older proteins are more stable for their native structure, and more robust to mutations, than younger ones. Our results underscore that several determinants, both intrinsic and historical, can interact to determine rates of protein evolution. PMID:22693443

  20. Quality assessment of modeled protein structure using physicochemical properties.

    PubMed

    Rana, Prashant Singh; Sharma, Harish; Bhattacharya, Mahua; Shukla, Anupam

    2015-04-01

    Physicochemical properties of proteins always guide to determine the quality of the protein structure, therefore it has been rigorously used to distinguish native or native-like structure from other predicted structures. In this work, we explore nine machine learning methods with six physicochemical properties to predict the Root Mean Square Deviation (RMSD), Template Modeling (TM-score), and Global Distance Test (GDT_TS-score) of modeled protein structure in the absence of its true native state. Physicochemical properties namely total surface area, euclidean distance (ED), total empirical energy, secondary structure penalty (SS), sequence length (SL), and pair number (PN) are used. There are a total of 95,091 modeled structures of 4896 native targets. A real coded Self-adaptive Differential Evolution algorithm (SaDE) is used to determine the feature importance. The K-fold cross validation is used to measure the robustness of the best predictive method. Through the intensive experiments, it is found that Random Forest method outperforms over other machine learning methods. This work makes the prediction faster and inexpensive. The performance result shows the prediction of RMSD, TM-score, and GDT_TS-score on Root Mean Square Error (RMSE) as 1.20, 0.06, and 0.06 respectively; correlation scores are 0.96, 0.92, and 0.91 respectively; R(2) are 0.92, 0.85, and 0.84 respectively; and accuracy are 78.82% (with ± 0.1 err), 86.56% (with ± 0.1 err), and 87.37% (with ± 0.1 err) respectively on the testing data set. The data set used in the study is available as supplement at http://bit.ly/RF-PCP-DataSets.

  1. Method for protein structure alignment

    DOEpatents

    Blankenbecler, Richard; Ohlsson, Mattias; Peterson, Carsten; Ringner, Markus

    2005-02-22

    This invention provides a method for protein structure alignment. More particularly, the present invention provides a method for identification, classification and prediction of protein structures. The present invention involves two key ingredients. First, an energy or cost function formulation of the problem simultaneously in terms of binary (Potts) assignment variables and real-valued atomic coordinates. Second, a minimization of the energy or cost function by an iterative method, where in each iteration (1) a mean field method is employed for the assignment variables and (2) exact rotation and/or translation of atomic coordinates is performed, weighted with the corresponding assignment variables.

  2. Protein Profile in Corpus Luteum during Pregnancy in Korean Native Cows

    PubMed Central

    Chung, H. J.; Kim, K. W.; Han, D. W.; Lee, H. C.; Yang, B. C.; Chung, H. K.; Shim, M. R.; Choi, M. S.; Jo, E. B.; Jo, Y. M.; Oh, M. Y.; Jo, S. J.; Hong, S. K.; Park, J. K.; Chang, W. K.

    2012-01-01

    Steroidogenesis requires coordination of the anabolic and catabolic pathways of lipid metabolism, but the profile of proteins associated with progesterone synthesis in cyclic and pregnant corpus luteum (CL) is not well-known in cattle. In Experiment 1, plasma progesterone level was monitored in cyclic cows (n = 5) and pregnant cows (n = 6; until d-90). A significant decline in the plasma progesterone level occurred at d-19 of cyclic cows. Progesterone level in abbatoir-derived luteal tissues was also determined at d 1 to 5, 6 to 13 and 14 to 20 of cyclic cows, and d-60 and -90 of pregnant cows (n = 5 each). Progesterone level in d-60 CL was not different from those in d 6 to 13 CL and d-90 CL, although the difference between d 6 to 13 and d-90 was significant. In Experiment 2, protein expression pattern in CL at d-90 (n = 4) was compared with that in CL of cyclic cows at d 6 to 13 (n = 5). Significant changes in the level of protein expression were detected in 32 protein spots by two-dimensional polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis (2-DE), and 23 of them were identified by matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization time-of-flight mass spectrometry (MALDI-TOF-MS). Six proteins were found only in pregnant CL, while the other 17 proteins were found only in cyclic CL. Among the above 6 proteins, vimentin which is involved in the regulation of post-implantation development was included. Thus, the protein expression pattern in CL was disorientated from cyclic luteal phase to mid pregnancy, and alterations in specific CL protein expression may contribute to the maintenance of pregnancy in Korean native cows. PMID:25049514

  3. Native Liquid Extraction Surface Analysis Mass Spectrometry: Analysis of Noncovalent Protein Complexes Directly from Dried Substrates

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Martin, Nicholas J.; Griffiths, Rian L.; Edwards, Rebecca L.; Cooper, Helen J.

    2015-08-01

    Liquid extraction surface analysis (LESA) mass spectrometry is a promising tool for the analysis of intact proteins from biological substrates. Here, we demonstrate native LESA mass spectrometry of noncovalent protein complexes of myoglobin and hemoglobin from a range of surfaces. Holomyoglobin, in which apomyoglobin is noncovalently bound to the prosthetic heme group, was observed following LESA mass spectrometry of myoglobin dried onto glass and polyvinylidene fluoride surfaces. Tetrameric hemoglobin [(αβ)2 4H] was observed following LESA mass spectrometry of hemoglobin dried onto glass and polyvinylidene fluoride (PVDF) surfaces, and from dried blood spots (DBS) on filter paper. Heme-bound dimers and monomers were also observed. The `contact' LESA approach was particularly suitable for the analysis of hemoglobin tetramers from DBS.

  4. Molecular mechanics of cardiac myosin-binding protein C in native thick filaments.

    PubMed

    Previs, M J; Beck Previs, S; Gulick, J; Robbins, J; Warshaw, D M

    2012-09-07

    The heart's pumping capacity results from highly regulated interactions of actomyosin molecular motors. Mutations in the gene for a potential regulator of these motors, cardiac myosin-binding protein C (cMyBP-C), cause hypertrophic cardiomyopathy. However, cMyBP-C's ability to modulate cardiac contractility is not well understood. Using single-particle fluorescence imaging techniques, transgenic protein expression, proteomics, and modeling, we found that cMyBP-C slowed actomyosin motion generation in native cardiac thick filaments. This mechanical effect was localized to where cMyBP-C resides within the thick filament (i.e., the C-zones) and was modulated by phosphorylation and site-specific proteolytic degradation. These results provide molecular insight into why cMyBP-C should be considered a member of a tripartite complex with actin and myosin that allows fine tuning of cardiac muscle contraction.

  5. Information Structure of Native English-Speaking ESOL Teachers in Grammar Explanations

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Malupa-Kim, Miralynn Faigao

    2011-01-01

    The Problem: The purpose of this study was to identify and analyze the information structure of native-English speaking (NES) ESOL teachers in giving explanations in a grammar class at an Intensive English Program (IEP) at a university in southern California Method: This mixed-method study employed a sequential-exploratory design. Six grammar…

  6. Acid hydrolysis of native and annealed starches and branch-structure of their Naegeli dextrins.

    PubMed

    Nakazawa, Yuta; Wang, Ya-Jane

    2003-11-21

    Eight commercial starches, including common corn, waxy corn, wheat, tapioca, potato, Hylon V, Hylon VII, and mung bean starch, were annealed by a multiple-step process, and their gelatinization characteristics were determined. Annealed starches had higher gelatinization temperatures, reduced gelatinization ranges, and increased gelatinization enthalpies than their native starches. The annealed starches with the highest gelatinization enthalpies were subjected to acid hydrolysis with 15.3% H2SO4, and Naegeli dextrins were prepared after 10 days' hydrolysis. Annealing increased the acid susceptibility of native starches in the first (rapid) and the second (slow) phases with potato starch showing the greatest and high amylose starches showing the least changes. Starches with a larger shift in onset gelatinization temperature also displayed a greater percent hydrolysis. The increase in susceptibility to acid hydrolysis was proposed to result from defective and porous structures that resulted after annealing. Although annealing perfected the crystalline structure, it also produced void space, which led to porous structures and possible starch granule defects. The molecular size distribution and chain length distribution of Naegeli dextrins of annealed and native starches were analyzed. The reorganization of the starch molecule during annealing occurred mainly within the crystalline lamellae. Imperfect double helices in the crystalline lamellae improved after annealing, and the branch linkages at the imperfect double helices became protected by the improved crystalline structure. Therefore, more long chains were observed in the Naegeli dextrins of annealed starches than in native starches.

  7. Relationship between native-state solubility and non-native aggregation of recombinant human granulocyte colony stimulating factor: practical implications for protein therapeutic development.

    PubMed

    Banks, Douglas D; Zhang, Jun; Siska, Christine C

    2014-10-06

    Prescreening methods are needed in the biotechnology industry for rapid selection of protein therapeutic candidates and formulations of low aggregation propensity. In recent reports solubility measurements have shown promise as one such method, although the connection between protein solubility and non-native aggregation is not well understood. In the present investigation, recombinant human granulocyte colony stimulating factor (rhGCSF) was used to explore this relationship since it was previously shown to rapidly undergo non-native aggregation/precipitation under physiological conditions in a reaction attenuated by the addition of sucrose [Krishnan, S.; et al. Biochemistry 2002, 41, 6422-6431]. Strong correlations were found between rhGCSF non-native aggregation and both solubility and thermal stability as a function of sucrose concentration. We believe these results make sense in the context of an rhGCSF aggregation mechanism where loss of monomer to insoluble aggregate is limited by association to an observable dimer from a less soluble (and aggregation competent) intermediate species that exists in a temperature sensitive pre-equilibrium with the native monomer. Both solubility and measures of conformational stability report on the position of this equilibrium and therefore the concentration of reactive intermediate. Interestingly, aggregation also correlated with rhGCSF solubility as a function of salting-in concentrations of phosphate since both are dependent on the colloidal stability of the reactive intermediate but not with conformational stability. In lieu of a complete understanding of the aggregation processes that limit protein therapeutic shelf life, these results highlight the potential of using simple solubility measurements as an additional tool in the biotechnology prescreening repertoire.

  8. Microfluidic polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis with in situ immunoblotting for native protein analysis.

    PubMed

    He, Mei; Herr, Amy E

    2009-10-01

    We introduce an automated immunoblotting method that reports protein electrophoretic mobility and identity in a single streamlined microfluidic assay. Native polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis (PAGE) was integrated with subsequent in situ immunoblotting. Integration of three PA gel elements into a glass microfluidic chip achieved multiple functions, including (1) rapid protein separation via on-chip PAGE, (2) directed electrophoretic transfer of resolved protein peaks to an in-line blotting membrane, and (3) high-efficiency identification of the transferred proteins using antibody-functionalized blotting membranes. In-chip blotting membranes were photopatterned with biotinylated antibody using streptavidin polyacrylamide (PA) thus yielding postseparation sample analysis. No pressure driven flow or fluid valving was required, as the assay was operated by electrokinetically programmed control. A model sample of fluorescently labeled BSA (negative control), alpha-actinin, and prostate specific antigen (PSA) was selected to develop and characterize the assay. A 5 min assay time was required without operator intervention. Optimization of the blotting membrane (geometry, operation, and composition) yielded a detection limit of approximately 0.05 pg (alpha-actinin peak). An important additional blotting fabrication strategy was developed and characterized to allow vanishingly small antibody consumption (approximately 1 microg), as well as end-user customization of the blotting membrane after device fabrication and storage. This first report of rapid on-chip protein PAGE integrated with in situ immunoblotting forms the basis for a sensitive, automated approach applicable to numerous forms of immunoblotting.

  9. Native Myocardial T1 as a Biomarker of Cardiac Structure in Non-Ischemic Cardiomyopathy.

    PubMed

    Shah, Ravi V; Kato, Shingo; Roujol, Sebastien; Murthy, Venkatesh; Bellm, Steven; Kashem, Abyaad; Basha, Tamer; Jang, Jihye; Eisman, Aaron S; Manning, Warren J; Nezafat, Reza

    2016-01-15

    Diffuse myocardial fibrosis is involved in the pathology of nonischemic cardiomyopathy (NIC). Recently, the application of native (noncontrast) myocardial T1 measurement has been proposed as a method for characterizing diffuse interstitial fibrosis. To determine the association of native T1 with myocardial structure and function, we prospectively studied 39 patients with NIC (defined as left ventricular ejection fraction (LVEF) ≤ 50% without cardiac magnetic resonance (CMR) evidence of previous infarction) and 27 subjects with normal LVEF without known overt cardiovascular disease. T1, T2, and extracellular volume fraction (ECV) were determined over 16 segments across the base, mid, and apical left ventricular (LV). NIC participants (57 ± 15 years) were predominantly men (74%), with a mean LVEF 34 ± 10%. Subjects with NIC had a greater native T1 (1,131 ± 51 vs 1,069 ± 29 ms; p <0.0001), a greater ECV (0.28 ± 0.04 vs 0.25 ± 0.02, p = 0.002), and a longer myocardial T2 (52 ± 8 vs 47 ± 5 ms; p = 0.02). After multivariate adjustment, a lower global native T1 time in NIC was associated with a greater LVEF (β = -0.59, p = 0.0003), greater right ventricular ejection fraction (β = -0.47, p = 0.006), and smaller left atrial volume index (β = 0.51, p = 0.001). The regional distribution of native myocardial T1 was similar in patients with and without NIC. In NIC, native myocardial T1 is elevated in all myocardial segments, suggesting a global (not regional) abnormality of myocardial tissue composition. In conclusion, native T1 may represent a rapid, noncontrast alternative to ECV for delineating myocardial tissue remodeling in NIC.

  10. Ranking the quality of protein structure models using sidechain based network properties

    PubMed Central

    Vishveshwara, Saraswathi

    2014-01-01

    Determining the correct structure of a protein given its sequence still remains an arduous task with many researchers working towards this goal. Most structure prediction methodologies result in the generation of a large number of probable candidates with the final challenge being to select the best amongst these. In this work, we have used Protein Structure Networks of native and modeled proteins in combination with Support Vector Machines to estimate the quality of a protein structure model and finally to provide ranks for these models. Model ranking is performed using regression analysis and helps in model selection from a group of many similar and good quality structures. Our results show that structures with a rank greater than 16 exhibit native protein-like properties while those below 10 are non-native like. The tool is also made available as a web-server ( http://vishgraph.mbu.iisc.ernet.in/GraProStr/native_non_native_ranking.html), where, 5 modelled structures can be evaluated at a given time. PMID:25580218

  11. The interaction of platinum-based drugs with native biologically relevant proteins.

    PubMed

    Brauckmann, Christine; Wehe, Christoph A; Kieshauer, Michael; Lanvers-Kaminsky, Claudia; Sperling, Michael; Karst, Uwe

    2013-02-01

    This study focuses on the identification of the products that are formed upon binding of therapeutically relevant platinum complexes to proteins like β-lactoglobulin A (LGA), human serum albumin (HSA), or human hemoglobin (HB). The respective proteins were incubated with the platinum-based anticancer drugs cisplatin, carboplatin, and oxaliplatin. LGA was selected as the model protein in addition to the two most abundant blood proteins HSA and HB. In case of the model protein, the effect of free thiol groups on the affinity of cisplatin, carboplatin, and oxaliplatin was investigated by means of liquid chromatography electrospray ionization time-of-flight mass spectrometry (LC/ESI-ToF-MS). The reduced form of LGA, which contains four free thiol groups more than the native LGA, shows a much higher affinity to the platinum-based drugs. By means of liquid chromatography coupled to inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry, the reaction behavior of the platinum-based drugs towards HSA and HB was investigated under different conditions considering the chloride concentration (4 or 100 mM) and the incubation time (24 and 48 h). In case of carboplatin, less than 6 % protein-bound platinum was detected. However, both cisplatin and oxaliplatin display a high affinity to the proteins investigated. Further information was obtained by means of LC/ESI-ToF-MS. In case of oxaliplatin, the complex [Pt(DACH)](2+) (DACH=C(6)N(2)H(14)) was identified interacting with HSA and HB. For cisplatin, different results were observed for the two proteins. The complex [Pt(NH(3))(2)Cl](+) interacted predominantly with HSA and [Pt(NH(3))(2)](2+) with HB.

  12. The genetic structure of native Americans in North America based on the Globalfiler® STRs.

    PubMed

    McCulloh, Kelly L; Ng, Jillian; Oldt, Robert F; Weise, Jessica A; Viray, Joy; Budowle, Bruce; Glenn Smith, David; Kanthaswamy, Sreetharan

    2016-11-01

    Current forensic STR databases, such as CODIS, lack population genetic data on Native American populations. Information from a geographically diverse array of tribes is necessary to provide improved statistical estimates of the strength of associations with DNA evidence. The Globalfiler® STR markers were used to characterize the genetic structure of ten tribal populations from seven geographic regions in North America, including those not presently represented in forensic databases. Samples from the Arctic region, Baja California, California/Great Basin, the Southeast, Mexico, the Midwest, and the Southwest were analyzed for allele frequencies, observed and expected heterozygosities, and F-statistics. The tribal samples exhibited an FST or θ value above the conservative 0.03 estimate recommended by the National Research Council (NRC) for calculating random match probabilities among Native Americans. The greater differentiation among tribal populations computed here (θ=0.04) warrants the inclusion of additional regional Native American samples into STR databases.

  13. Elastic network normal modes provide a basis for protein structure refinement

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gniewek, Pawel; Kolinski, Andrzej; Jernigan, Robert L.; Kloczkowski, Andrzej

    2012-05-01

    It is well recognized that thermal motions of atoms in the protein native state, the fluctuations about the minimum of the global free energy, are well reproduced by the simple elastic network models (ENMs) such as the anisotropic network model (ANM). Elastic network models represent protein dynamics as vibrations of a network of nodes (usually represented by positions of the heavy atoms or by the Cα atoms only for coarse-grained representations) in which the spatially close nodes are connected by harmonic springs. These models provide a reliable representation of the fluctuational dynamics of proteins and RNA, and explain various conformational changes in protein structures including those important for ligand binding. In the present paper, we study the problem of protein structure refinement by analyzing thermal motions of proteins in non-native states. We represent the conformational space close to the native state by a set of decoys generated by the I-TASSER protein structure prediction server utilizing template-free modeling. The protein substates are selected by hierarchical structure clustering. The main finding is that thermal motions for some substates, overlap significantly with the deformations necessary to reach the native state. Additionally, more mobile residues yield higher overlaps with the required deformations than do the less mobile ones. These findings suggest that structural refinement of poorly resolved protein models can be significantly enhanced by reduction of the conformational space to the motions imposed by the dominant normal modes.

  14. Bayesian inference of protein structure from chemical shift data.

    PubMed

    Bratholm, Lars A; Christensen, Anders S; Hamelryck, Thomas; Jensen, Jan H

    2015-01-01

    Protein chemical shifts are routinely used to augment molecular mechanics force fields in protein structure simulations, with weights of the chemical shift restraints determined empirically. These weights, however, might not be an optimal descriptor of a given protein structure and predictive model, and a bias is introduced which might result in incorrect structures. In the inferential structure determination framework, both the unknown structure and the disagreement between experimental and back-calculated data are formulated as a joint probability distribution, thus utilizing the full information content of the data. Here, we present the formulation of such a probability distribution where the error in chemical shift prediction is described by either a Gaussian or Cauchy distribution. The methodology is demonstrated and compared to a set of empirically weighted potentials through Markov chain Monte Carlo simulations of three small proteins (ENHD, Protein G and the SMN Tudor Domain) using the PROFASI force field and the chemical shift predictor CamShift. Using a clustering-criterion for identifying the best structure, together with the addition of a solvent exposure scoring term, the simulations suggests that sampling both the structure and the uncertainties in chemical shift prediction leads more accurate structures compared to conventional methods using empirical determined weights. The Cauchy distribution, using either sampled uncertainties or predetermined weights, did, however, result in overall better convergence to the native fold, suggesting that both types of distribution might be useful in different aspects of the protein structure prediction.

  15. Rhizobacterial Community Structures Associated with Native Plants Grown in Chilean Extreme Environments.

    PubMed

    Jorquera, Milko A; Maruyama, Fumito; Ogram, Andrew V; Navarrete, Oscar U; Lagos, Lorena M; Inostroza, Nitza G; Acuña, Jacquelinne J; Rilling, Joaquín I; de La Luz Mora, María

    2016-10-01

    Chile is topographically and climatically diverse, with a wide array of diverse undisturbed ecosystems that include native plants that are highly adapted to local conditions. However, our understanding of the diversity, activity, and role of rhizobacteria associated with natural vegetation in undisturbed Chilean extreme ecosystems is very poor. In the present study, the combination of denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis and 454-pyrosequencing approaches was used to describe the rhizobacterial community structures of native plants grown in three representative Chilean extreme environments: Atacama Desert (ATA), Andes Mountains (AND), and Antarctic (ANT). Both molecular approaches revealed the presence of Proteobacteria, Bacteroidetes, and Actinobacteria as the dominant phyla in the rhizospheres of native plants. Lower numbers of operational taxonomic units (OTUs) were observed in rhizosphere soils from ATA compared with AND and ANT. Both approaches also showed differences in rhizobacterial community structures between extreme environments and between plant species. The differences among plant species grown in the same environment were attributed to the higher relative abundance of classes Gammaproteobacteria and Alphaproteobacteria. However, further studies are needed to determine which environmental factors regulate the structures of rhizobacterial communities, and how (or if) specific bacterial groups may contribute to the growth and survival of native plants in each Chilean extreme environments.

  16. Protein Structure Comparison and Classification

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Çamoǧlu, Orhan; Singh, Ambuj K.

    The success of genome projects has generated an enormous amount of sequence data. In order to realize the full value of the data, we need to understand its functional role and its evolutionary origin. Sequence comparison methods are incredibly valuable for this task. However, for sequences falling in the twilight zone (usually between 20 and 35% sequence similarity), we need to resort to structural alignment and comparison for a meaningful analysis. Such a structural approach can be used for classification of proteins, isolation of structural motifs, and discovery of drug targets.

  17. Native and foreign proteins secreted by the Cupriavidus metallidurans type II system and an alternative mechanism.

    PubMed

    Xu, Houjuan; Denny, Timothy P

    2017-01-24

    The type II secretion system (T2SS), which transports selected periplasmic proteins across the outer membrane, has rarely been studied in nonpathogens or in organisms classified as betaproteobacteria. Therefore, we studied Cupriavidus metallidurans (Cme), a facultative chemilithoautotroph. Gel analysis of extracellular proteins revealed no remarkable differences between wild type and T2SS mutants. However, enzyme assays revealed that native extracellular alkaline phosphatase is a T2SS substrate, because activity was 10-fold greater for wild-type than a T2SS mutant. In Cme engineered to produce three Ralstonia solanacearum (Rso) exoenzymes at least 95% of their total activities were extracellular, but unexpectedly high percentages of these exoenzymes remained extracellular in T2SS mutants cultured in rich broth. These conditions appear to permit an alternative secretion process, because neither cell lysis nor periplasmic leakage was observed when Cme produced a Pectobacterium carotovorum exoenzyme and wild-type Cme cultured in minimal media secreted 98% of Rso polygalacturonase, but 92% of this exoenzyme remained intracellular in T2SS mutants. We concluded that Cme has a functional T2SS despite lacking any abundant native T2SS substrates. Efficient secretion of three foreign exoenzymes by Cme is remarkable, but so too is the indication of an alternative secretion process in rich culture conditions. When not transiting the T2SS, we suggest that Rso exoenzymes are probably selectively packaged into outer membrane vesicles. Phylogenetic analysis of T2SS proteins supports the existence of at least three T2SS subfamilies and we propose that Cme, as a representative of the betaproteobacteria, could become a new model system useful for studying T2SS substrate specificity.

  18. Prion protein gene polymorphism and genetic risk evaluation for scrapie in all Turkish native sheep breeds.

    PubMed

    Meydan, H; Yüceer, B; Degirmenci, R; Özkan, M M; Yildiz, M A

    2012-08-01

    The aim of this study was to identify the prion protein (PrP) gene polymorphism in a total of 1,110 healthy sheep from 18 Turkish native sheep breeds. There were nine alleles and 22 genotypes observed based on codons 136, 154, and 171 of the PrP gene. The ARQ allele was predominant for all breeds. The most resistant allele to scrapie, ARR, was present in all breeds. The VRQ allele, associated with the highest susceptibility to scrapie, was detected at low frequencies in İvesi (0.06), Kıvırcık (0.021), Sakız (0.010), Karayaka (0.011), Çine Çaparı (0.012), and Güneykaraman (0.017). In general, the ARQ/ARQ genotype was predominant in all breeds. The most resistant genotype to scrapie, ARR/ARR, was found with the frequency lower than 0.180. The most susceptible genotype, VRQ/VRQ, was found in only Kıvırcık. The TRR and TRH alleles and the genotypes of ARR/TRR, ARR/ARK, and ARH/TRH have been found for the first time in Turkish native sheep breeds. According to these results, all breeds belong to risk group R3 followed by R2. It is propounded that the susceptibility to scrapie increased from eastern to western part of Turkey. Our findings of Turkish native sheep breeds with PrP gene polymorphisms will assist the sheep breeding program for selection of scrapie resistance genotypes to reduce the risk of scrapie.

  19. Native-sized recombinant spider silk protein produced in metabolically engineered Escherichia coli results in a strong fiber

    PubMed Central

    Xia, Xiao-Xia; Qian, Zhi-Gang; Ki, Chang Seok; Park, Young Hwan; Kaplan, David L.; Lee, Sang Yup

    2010-01-01

    Spider dragline silk is a remarkably strong fiber that makes it attractive for numerous applications. Much has thus been done to make similar fibers by biomimic spinning of recombinant dragline silk proteins. However, success is limited in part due to the inability to successfully express native-sized recombinant silk proteins (250–320 kDa). Here we show that a 284.9 kDa recombinant protein of the spider Nephila clavipes is produced and spun into a fiber displaying mechanical properties comparable to those of the native silk. The native-sized protein, predominantly rich in glycine (44.9%), was favorably expressed in metabolically engineered Escherichia coli within which the glycyl-tRNA pool was elevated. We also found that the recombinant proteins of lower molecular weight versions yielded inferior fiber properties. The results provide insight into evolution of silk protein size related to mechanical performance, and also clarify why spinning lower molecular weight proteins does not recapitulate the properties of native fibers. Furthermore, the silk expression, purification, and spinning platform established here should be useful for sustainable production of natural quality dragline silk, potentially enabling broader applications. PMID:20660779

  20. Optimized distance-dependent atom-pair-based potential DOOP for protein structure prediction.

    PubMed

    Chae, Myong-Ho; Krull, Florian; Knapp, Ernst-Walter

    2015-05-01

    The DOcking decoy-based Optimized Potential (DOOP) energy function for protein structure prediction is based on empirical distance-dependent atom-pair interactions. To optimize the atom-pair interactions, native protein structures are decomposed into polypeptide chain segments that correspond to structural motives involving complete secondary structure elements. They constitute near native ligand-receptor systems (or just pairs). Thus, a total of 8609 ligand-receptor systems were prepared from 954 selected proteins. For each of these hypothetical ligand-receptor systems, 1000 evenly sampled docking decoys with 0-10 Å interface root-mean-square-deviation (iRMSD) were generated with a method used before for protein-protein docking. A neural network-based optimization method was applied to derive the optimized energy parameters using these decoys so that the energy function mimics the funnel-like energy landscape for the interaction between these hypothetical ligand-receptor systems. Thus, our method hierarchically models the overall funnel-like energy landscape of native protein structures. The resulting energy function was tested on several commonly used decoy sets for native protein structure recognition and compared with other statistical potentials. In combination with a torsion potential term which describes the local conformational preference, the atom-pair-based potential outperforms other reported statistical energy functions in correct ranking of native protein structures for a variety of decoy sets. This is especially the case for the most challenging ROSETTA decoy set, although it does not take into account side chain orientation-dependence explicitly. The DOOP energy function for protein structure prediction, the underlying database of protein structures with hypothetical ligand-receptor systems and their decoys are freely available at http://agknapp.chemie.fu-berlin.de/doop/.

  1. How main-chains of proteins explore the free-energy landscape in native states

    PubMed Central

    Senet, Patrick; Maisuradze, Gia G.; Foulie, Colette; Delarue, Patrice; Scheraga, Harold A.

    2008-01-01

    Understanding how a single native protein diffuses on its free-energy landscape is essential to understand protein kinetics and function. The dynamics of a protein is complex, with multiple relaxation times reflecting a hierarchical free-energy landscape. Using all-atom molecular dynamics simulations of an α/β protein (crambin) and a β-sheet polypeptide (BS2) in their “native” states, we demonstrate that the mean-square displacement of dihedral angles, defined by 4 successive Cα atoms, increases as a power law of time, tα, with an exponent α between 0.08 and 0.39 (α = 1 corresponds to Brownian diffusion), at 300 K. Residues with low exponents are located mainly in well-defined secondary elements and adopt 1 conformational substate. Residues with high exponents are found in loops/turns and chain ends and exist in multiple conformational substates, i.e., they move on multiple-minima free-energy profiles. PMID:19073932

  2. Dual labeling of a binding protein allows for specific fluorescence detection of native protein.

    PubMed

    Karlström, A; Nygren, P A

    2001-08-01

    Fluorescence resonance energy transfer has been investigated in the context of specific detection of unlabeled proteins. A model system based on the staphylococcal protein A (SPA)-IgG interaction was designed, in which a single domain was engineered to facilitate site-specific incorporation of fluorophores. An Asn23Cys mutant of the B domain from SPA was expressed in Escherichia coli and subsequently labeled at the introduced unique thiol and at an amino group, using N-iodoacetyl-N'-(5-sulfo-1-naphthyl)ethylenediamine (1,5-IAEDANS) and succinimidyl 6-(N-(7-nitrobenz-2-oxa-1,3-diazol-4-yl)amino)hexanoate (NBD-X, SE), respectively. Biosensor analysis of purified doubly labeled protein showed that high-affinity binding to the Fc region of IgG was retained. The fluorescence emission spectrum of the doubly labeled protein showed a shift in the relative emission of the two fluorophores in the presence of Fc3(1) fragments, which bind specifically to the B domain. In addition, the fluorescence emission ratio 480/525 nm was shown to increase with increasing concentration of Fc3(1), whereas the presence of a control protein did not affect the emission ratio over the same concentration range.

  3. Characterization of intact protein conjugates and biopharmaceuticals using ion-exchange chromatography with online detection by native electrospray ionization mass spectrometry and top-down tandem mass spectrometry.

    PubMed

    Muneeruddin, Khaja; Nazzaro, Mark; Kaltashov, Igor A

    2015-10-06

    Characterization of biopharmaceutical products is a challenging task, which needs to be carried out at several different levels (including both primary structure and conformation). An additional difficulty frequently arises due to the structural heterogeneity inherent to many protein-based therapeutics (e.g., extensive glycosylation or "designer" modifications such as chemical conjugation) or introduced postproduction as a result of stress (e.g., oxidation and deamidation). A combination of ion-exchange chromatography (IXC) with online detection by native electrospray ionization mass spectrometry (ESI MS) allows characterization of complex and heterogeneous therapeutic proteins and protein conjugates to be accomplished at a variety of levels without compromising their conformational integrity. The IXC/ESI MS measurements allow protein conjugates to be profiled by analyzing conjugation stoichiometry and the presence of multiple positional isomers, as well as to establish the effect of chemical modifications on the conformational integrity of each species. While mass profiling alone is not sufficient for identification of nonenzymatic post-translational modifications (PTMs) that result in a very small mass change of the eluting species (e.g., deamidation), this task can be completed using online top-down structural analysis, as demonstrated using stressed interferon-β as an example. The wealth of information that can be provided by IXC/native ESI MS and tandem mass spectrometry (MS/MS) on protein-based therapeutics will undoubtedly make it a very valuable addition to the experimental toolbox of biopharmaceutical analysis.

  4. Engineering tissue constructs to mimic native aortic and pulmonary valve leaflets' structures and mechanics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Masoumi, Nafiseh

    There are several disadvantages correlated with current heart valve replacement, including anticoagulation therapy for patients with mechanical valves and the low durability of bioprosthetic valves. The non-viable nature of such devices is a critical drawback especially for pediatric cases due to the inability of the graft to grow in vivo with the patients. A tissue engineered heart valve (TEHV) with remodeling and growth ability, is conceptually appealing to use in the surgical repair and could serve as a permanent replacements when operating for pediatric valvular lesions. It is critical that scaffolds for functional heart valve tissue engineering, be capable of mimicking the native leaflet's structure and mechanical properties at the time of implantation. Meanwhile, the scaffolds should be able to support cellular proliferation and native-like tissue formation as the TEHV remodels toward a scaffold-free state. Our overall hypothesis is that an "ideal" engineered construct, designed based on native leaflet's structure and mechanics, will complement a native heart valve leaflet in providing benchmarks for use in the design of clinically-applicable TEHV. This hypothesis was addressed through several experiments conducted in the present study. To establish a functional biomimetic TEHV, we developed scaffolds capable of matching the anisotropic stiffness of native leaflet while promoting native-like cell and collagen content and supporting the ECM generation. Scaffolds with various polymer contents (e.g., poly (glycerol sebacate) (PGS) and poly (epsilon-caprolactone) (PCL)) and structural designs (e.g., microfabricated and microfibrous scaffolds), were fabricated based on native leaflet's structure and mechanics. It was found that the tri-layered scaffold, designed with assembly of microfabricated PGS and microfibrous PGS/PCL was a functional leaflet capable of promoting tissue formation. Furthermore, to investigate the effect of cyclic stress and flexure

  5. The Stability and Formation of Native Proteins from Unfolded Monomers Is Increased through Interactions with Unrelated Proteins

    PubMed Central

    Rodríguez-Almazán, Claudia; Torner, Francisco J.; Costas, Miguel; Pérez-Montfort, Ruy; de Gómez-Puyou, Marieta Tuena; Puyou, Armando Gómez

    2007-01-01

    The intracellular concentration of protein may be as high as 400 mg per ml; thus it seems inevitable that within the cell, numerous protein-protein contacts are constantly occurring. A basic biochemical principle states that the equilibrium of an association reaction can be shifted by ligand binding. This indicates that if within the cell many protein-protein interactions are indeed taking place, some fundamental characteristics of proteins would necessarily differ from those observed in traditional biochemical systems. Accordingly, we measured the effect of eight different proteins on the formation of homodimeric triosephosphate isomerase from Trypanosoma brucei (TbTIM) from guanidinium chloride unfolded monomers. The eight proteins at concentrations of micrograms per ml induced an important increase on active dimer formation. Studies on the mechanism of this phenomenon showed that the proteins stabilize the dimeric structure of TbTIM, and that this is the driving force that promotes the formation of active dimers. Similar data were obtained with TIM from three other species. The heat changes that occur when TbTIM is mixed with lysozyme were determined by isothermal titration calorimetry; the results provided direct evidence of the weak interaction between apparently unrelated proteins. The data, therefore, are strongly suggestive that the numerous protein-protein interactions that occur in the intracellular space are an additional control factor in the formation and stability of proteins. PMID:17551578

  6. Surfactant-free purification of membrane proteins with intact native membrane environment.

    PubMed

    Jamshad, Mohammed; Lin, Yu-Pin; Knowles, Timothy J; Parslow, Rosemary A; Harris, Craig; Wheatley, Mark; Poyner, David R; Bill, Roslyn M; Thomas, Owen R T; Overduin, Michael; Dafforn, Tim R

    2011-06-01

    In order to study the structure and function of a protein, it is generally required that the protein in question is purified away from all others. For soluble proteins, this process is greatly aided by the lack of any restriction on the free and independent diffusion of individual protein particles in three dimensions. This is not the case for membrane proteins, as the membrane itself forms a continuum that joins the proteins within the membrane with one another. It is therefore essential that the membrane is disrupted in order to allow separation and hence purification of membrane proteins. In the present review, we examine recent advances in the methods employed to separate membrane proteins before purification. These approaches move away from solubilization methods based on the use of small surfactants, which have been shown to suffer from significant practical problems. Instead, the present review focuses on methods that stem from the field of nanotechnology and use a range of reagents that fragment the membrane into nanometre-scale particles containing the protein complete with the local membrane environment. In particular, we examine a method employing the amphipathic polymer poly(styrene-co-maleic acid), which is able to reversibly encapsulate the membrane protein in a 10 nm disc-like structure ideally suited to purification and further biochemical study.

  7. Food web structure in exotic and native mangroves: A Hawaii-Puerto Rico comparison

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Demopoulos, A.W.J.; Fry, B.; Smith, C.R.

    2007-01-01

    Plant invasions can fundamentally alter detrital inputs and the structure of detritus-based food webs. We examined the detrital pathways in mangrove food webs in native (Puerto Rican) and introduced (Hawaiian) Rhizophora mangle forests using a dual isotope approach and a mixing model. Based on trophic-level fractionation of 0-1??? for ?? 13C and 2-3??? for ?? 15N, among the invertebrates, only nematodes, oligochaetes, and nereid polychaetes from native mangroves exhibited stable isotopes consistent with a mangrove-derived diet. Certain fauna, in particular tubificid oligochaetes, had ?? 13C values consistent with the consumption of mangrove leaves, but they were depleted in 15N, suggesting their primary nitrogen source was low in 15N, and was possibly N 2-fixing bacteria. In introduced mangroves, all feeding groups appeared to rely heavily on non-mangrove sources, especially phytoplankton inputs. Mixing model results and discriminant analysis showed clear separation of introduced and native mangrove sites based on differential food source utilization within feeding groups, with stronger and more diverse use of benthic foods observed in native forests. Observed differences between native and invasive mangrove food webs may be due to Hawaiian detritivores being poorly adapted to utilizing the tannin-rich, nitrogen-poor mangrove detritus. In addition, differential utilization of mangrove detritus between native and introduced mangroves may be a consequence of forest age. We postulate that increasing mangrove forest age may promote diversification of bacterial food webs important in N and S cycling. Our results also suggest a potentially important role for sulfur bacteria in supporting the most abundant infaunal consumers, nematodes, in the most mature systems. ?? 2007 Springer-Verlag.

  8. Structural studies of human glioma pathogenesis-related protein 1.

    PubMed

    Asojo, Oluwatoyin A; Koski, Raymond A; Bonafé, Nathalie

    2011-10-01

    Human glioma pathogenesis-related protein 1 (GLIPR1) is a membrane protein that is highly upregulated in brain cancers but is barely detectable in normal brain tissue. GLIPR1 is composed of a signal peptide that directs its secretion, a conserved cysteine-rich CAP (cysteine-rich secretory proteins, antigen 5 and pathogenesis-related 1 proteins) domain and a transmembrane domain. GLIPR1 is currently being investigated as a candidate for prostate cancer gene therapy and for glioblastoma targeted therapy. Crystal structures of a truncated soluble domain of the human GLIPR1 protein (sGLIPR1) solved by molecular replacement using a truncated polyalanine search model of the CAP domain of stecrisp, a snake-venom cysteine-rich secretory protein (CRISP), are presented. The correct molecular-replacement solution could only be obtained by removing all loops from the search model. The native structure was refined to 1.85 Å resolution and that of a Zn2+ complex was refined to 2.2 Å resolution. The latter structure revealed that the putative binding cavity coordinates Zn2+ similarly to snake-venom CRISPs, which are involved in Zn2+-dependent mechanisms of inflammatory modulation. Both sGLIPR1 structures have extensive flexible loop/turn regions and unique charge distributions that were not observed in any of the previously reported CAP protein structures. A model is also proposed for the structure of full-length membrane-bound GLIPR1.

  9. Population genetic structure of the predatory, social wasp Vespula pensylvanica in its native and invasive range.

    PubMed

    Chau, Linh M; Hanna, Cause; Jenkins, Laurel T; Kutner, Rachel E; Burns, Elizabeth A; Kremen, Claire; Goodisman, Michael A D

    2015-12-01

    Invasive species cause extensive damage to their introduced ranges. Ocean archipelagos are particularly vulnerable to invasive taxa. In this study, we used polymorphic microsatellite markers to investigate the genetic structure of the social wasp Vespula pensylvanica in its native range of North America and its introduced range in the archipelago of Hawaii. Our goal was to gain a better understanding of the invasion dynamics of social species and the processes affecting biological invasions. We found that V. pensylvanica showed no significant genetic isolation by distance and little genetic structure over a span of 2000 km in its native range. This result suggests that V. pensylvanica can successfully disperse across large distances either through natural- or human-mediated mechanisms. In contrast to the genetic patterns observed in the native range, we found substantial genetic structure in the invasive V. pensylvanica range in Hawaii. The strong patterns of genetic differentiation within and between the Hawaiian Islands may reflect the effects of geographic barriers and invasion history on gene flow. We also found some evidence for gene flow between the different islands of Hawaii which was likely mediated through human activity. Overall, this study provides insight on how geographic barriers, invasion history, and human activity can shape population genetic structure of invasive species.

  10. Anomalous diffusion and dynamical correlation between the side chains and the main chain of proteins in their native state

    PubMed Central

    Cote, Yoann; Senet, Patrick; Delarue, Patrice; Maisuradze, Gia G.; Scheraga, Harold A.

    2012-01-01

    Structural fluctuations of a protein are essential for a protein to function and fold. By using molecular dynamics (MD) simulations of the model α/β protein VA3 in its native state, the coupling between the main-chain (MC) motions [represented by coarse-grained dihedral angles (CGDAs) γn based on four successive Cα atoms (n - 1, n, n + 1, n + 2) along the amino acid sequence] and its side-chain (SC) motions [represented by CGDAs δn formed by the virtual bond joining two consecutive Cα atoms (n, n + 1) and the bonds joining these Cα atoms to their respective Cβ atoms] was analyzed. The motions of SCs (δn) and MC (γn) over time occur on similar free-energy profiles and were found to be subdiffusive. The fluctuations of the SCs (δn) and those of the MC (γn) are generally poorly correlated on a ps time-scale with a correlation increasing with time to reach a maximum value at about 10 ns. This maximum value is close to the correlation between the δn(t) and γn(t) time-series extracted from the entire duration of the MD runs (400 ns) and varies significantly along the amino acid sequence. High correlations between the SC and MC motions [δ(t) and γ(t) time-series] were found only in flexible regions of the protein for a few residues which contribute the most to the slowest collective modes of the molecule. These results are a possible indication of the role of the flexible regions of proteins for the biological function and folding. PMID:22689963

  11. Relationships between milks differentiated on native milk fat globule characteristics and fat, protein and calcium compositions.

    PubMed

    Couvreur, S; Hurtaud, C

    2017-03-01

    Many studies have shown that milk fat globule (MFG) diameter varies in dairy cows in relation to diet and/or breed. However, the mechanisms governing the size of the fat globules remain hypothetical. Our objective was to determine the variable biochemical characteristics (fat, protein, fatty acids (FA), casein and calcium (Ca) contents) between individual milk which differed in both MFG diameter and membrane content, in order to speculate about the links between milk synthesis and MFG secretion. With this aim, we built five databases of individual milk samples from 21 experiments performed between 2003 and 2011. Three of them grouped data from trials dealing with breed/diet effects and included information about: (i) MFG size/membrane, fat and protein contents (n=982), (ii) previous parameters plus FA profile (n=529) and (iii) previous parameters plus true protein composition and calcium contents (n=101). A hierarchical clustering analysis performed on these three databases yielded four groups differing in the MFG characteristics. We observed significant differences among groups for the following parameters: (i) fat content and fat : protein ratio; (ii) de novo and polyunsaturated FA contents; (iii) Ca contents. These relationships could result from potential process regulating the synthesis and secretion of MFG: (i) the apical membrane turnover for MFG secretion and (ii) cytoplasmic lipid droplet formation in the lactocyte during its migration from the basal to the apical pole. The two other databases grouped data from trials dealing with milking frequency (n=211), milking kinetics and milk type (residual v. cisternal) (n=224). They were used to study the relationships between the size of the MFG and milk composition for high native fat contents (from 60 up to 100 g/kg in residual milks). We observed curvilinear relationships between the size of the MFG and fat content, as well as with the fat : protein ratio. This result suggests that MFG diameter reaches a

  12. Atomic-Level Structure Characterization of an Ultrafast Folding Mini-Protein Denatured State

    PubMed Central

    Rogne, Per; Ozdowy, Przemysław; Richter, Christian; Saxena, Krishna; Schwalbe, Harald; Kuhn, Lars T.

    2012-01-01

    Atomic-level analyses of non-native protein ensembles constitute an important aspect of protein folding studies to reach a more complete understanding of how proteins attain their native form exhibiting biological activity. Previously, formation of hydrophobic clusters in the 6 M urea-denatured state of an ultrafast folding mini-protein known as TC5b from both photo-CIDNP NOE transfer studies and FCS measurements was observed. Here, we elucidate the structural properties of this mini-protein denatured in 6 M urea performing 15N NMR relaxation studies together with a thorough NOE analysis. Even though our results demonstrate that no elements of secondary structure persist in the denatured state, the heterogeneous distribution of R2 rate constants together with observing pronounced heteronuclear NOEs along the peptide backbone reveals specific regions of urea-denatured TC5b exhibiting a high degree of structural rigidity more frequently observed for native proteins. The data are complemented with studies on two TC5b point mutants to verify the importance of hydrophobic interactions for fast folding. Our results corroborate earlier findings of a hydrophobic cluster present in urea-denatured TC5b comprising both native and non-native contacts underscoring their importance for ultra rapid folding. The data assist in finding ways of interpreting the effects of pre-existing native and/or non-native interactions on the ultrafast folding of proteins; a fact, which might have to be considered when defining the starting conditions for molecular dynamics simulation studies of protein folding. PMID:22848459

  13. Edaphic, salinity, and stand structural trends in chronosequences of native and non-native dominated riparian forests along the Colorado River, USA

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Merritt, David M.; Shafroth, Patrick B.

    2012-01-01

    Tamarix spp. are introduced shrubs that have become among the most abundant woody plants growing along western North American rivers. We sought to empirically test the long-held belief that Tamarix actively displaces native species through elevating soil salinity via salt exudation. We measured chemical and physical attributes of soils (e.g., salinity, major cations and anions, texture), litter cover and depth, and stand structure along chronosequences dominated by Tamarix and those dominated by native riparian species (Populus or Salix) along the upper and lower Colorado River in Colorado and Arizona/California, USA. We tested four hypotheses: (1) the rate of salt accumulation in soils is faster in Tamarix-dominated stands than stands dominated by native species, (2) the concentration of salts in the soil is higher in mature stands dominated by Tamarix compared to native stands, (3) soil salinity is a function of Tamarix abundance, and (4) available nutrients are more concentrated in native-dominated stands compared to Tamarix-dominated stands. We found that salt concentration increases at a faster rate in Tamarix-dominated stands along the relatively free-flowing upper Colorado but not along the heavily-regulated lower Colorado. Concentrations of ions that are known to be preferentially exuded by Tamarix (e.g., B, Na, and Cl) were higher in Tamarix stands than in native stands. Soil salt concentrations in older Tamarix stands along the upper Colorado were sufficiently high to inhibit germination, establishment, or growth of some native species. On the lower Colorado, salinity was very high in all stands and is likely due to factors associated with floodplain development and the hydrologic effects of river regulation, such as reduced overbank flooding, evaporation of shallow ground water, higher salt concentrations in surface and ground water due to agricultural practices, and higher salt concentrations in fine-textured sediments derived from naturally saline

  14. Structure comparison of native and mutant human recombinant FKBP12 complexes with the immunosuppressant drug FK506 (tacrolimus).

    PubMed Central

    Itoh, S.; Navia, M. A.

    1995-01-01

    The consequences of site-directed mutagenesis experiments are often anticipated by empirical rules regarding the expected effects of a given amino acid substitution. Here, we examine the effects of "conservative" and "nonconservative" substitutions on the X-ray crystal structures of human recombinant FKBP12 mutants in complex with the immunosuppressant drug FK506 (tacrolimus). R42K and R42I mutant complexes show 110-fold and 180-fold decreased calcineurin (CN) inhibition, respectively, versus the native complex, yet retain full peptidyl prolyl isomerase (PPIase) activity, FK506 binding, and FK506-mediated PPIase inhibition. Interestingly, the structure of the R42I mutant complex is better conserved than that of the R42K mutant complex when compared to the native complex structure, within both the FKBP12 protein and FK506 ligand regions of the complexes, and with respect to temperature factors and RMS coordinate differences. This is due to compensatory interactions mediated by two newly ordered water molecules in the R42I complex structure, molecules that act as surrogates for the missing arginine guanidino nitrogens of R42. The absence of such surrogate solvent interactions in the R42K complex leads to some disorder in the so-called "40s loop" that encompasses the substituent. One rationalization proposed for the observed loss in CN inhibition in these R42 mutant complexes invokes indirect effects leading to a misorientation of FKBP12 and FK506 structural elements that normally interact with calcineurin. Our results with the structure of the R42I complex in particular suggest that the observed loss of CN inhibition might also be explained by the loss of a specific R42-mediated interaction with CN that cannot be mimicked effectively by the solvent molecules that otherwise stabilize the conformation of the 40s loop in that structure. PMID:8563622

  15. Population structure in the native range predicts the spread of introduced marine species

    PubMed Central

    Gaither, Michelle R.; Bowen, Brian W.; Toonen, Robert J.

    2013-01-01

    Forecasting invasion success remains a fundamental challenge in invasion biology. The effort to identify universal characteristics that predict which species become invasive has faltered in part because of the diversity of taxa and systems considered. Here, we use an alternative approach focused on the spread stage of invasions. FST, a measure of alternative fixation of alleles, is a common proxy for realized dispersal among natural populations, summarizing the combined influences of life history, behaviour, habitat requirements, population size, history and ecology. We test the hypothesis that population structure in the native range (FST) is negatively correlated with the geographical extent of spread of marine species in an introduced range. An analysis of the available data (29 species, nine phyla) revealed a significant negative correlation (R2 = 0.245–0.464) between FST and the extent of spread of non-native species. Mode FST among pairwise comparisons between populations in the native range demonstrated the highest predictive power (R2 = 0.464, p < 0.001). There was significant improvement when marker type was considered, with mtDNA datasets providing the strongest relationship (n = 21, R2 = 0.333–0.516). This study shows that FST can be used to make qualitative predictions concerning the geographical extent to which a non-native marine species will spread once established in a new area. PMID:23595272

  16. Population structure in the native range predicts the spread of introduced marine species.

    PubMed

    Gaither, Michelle R; Bowen, Brian W; Toonen, Robert J

    2013-06-07

    Forecasting invasion success remains a fundamental challenge in invasion biology. The effort to identify universal characteristics that predict which species become invasive has faltered in part because of the diversity of taxa and systems considered. Here, we use an alternative approach focused on the spread stage of invasions. FST, a measure of alternative fixation of alleles, is a common proxy for realized dispersal among natural populations, summarizing the combined influences of life history, behaviour, habitat requirements, population size, history and ecology. We test the hypothesis that population structure in the native range (FST) is negatively correlated with the geographical extent of spread of marine species in an introduced range. An analysis of the available data (29 species, nine phyla) revealed a significant negative correlation (R(2) = 0.245-0.464) between FST and the extent of spread of non-native species. Mode FST among pairwise comparisons between populations in the native range demonstrated the highest predictive power (R(2) = 0.464, p < 0.001). There was significant improvement when marker type was considered, with mtDNA datasets providing the strongest relationship (n = 21, R(2) = 0.333-0.516). This study shows that FST can be used to make qualitative predictions concerning the geographical extent to which a non-native marine species will spread once established in a new area.

  17. A protein structure data and analysis system.

    PubMed

    Tian, Hao; Sunderraman, Rajshekhar; Weber, Irene; Wang, Haibin; Yang, Hong

    2005-01-01

    In this paper, we present the design and implementation of a protein structure data and analysis system that is only used in the lab for analyzing the proprietary data. It is capable of storing public protein data, such as the data in Protein Data Bank (PDB) [1], and life scientists' proprietary data. This toolkit is targeted at life scientists who want to maintain proprietary protein structure data (may be incomplete), to search and query publicly known protein structures and to compare their structure data with others. The comparison functions can be used to find structure differences between two proteins at atom level, especially in mutant versions of proteins. The system can also be used as a tool of choosing better protein structure template in new protein's tertiary structure prediction. The system is developed in Java and the protein data is stored in a relational database (Oracle 9i).

  18. Protein structure quality assessment based on the distance profiles of consecutive backbone Cα atoms

    PubMed Central

    Chakraborty, Sandeep; Venkatramani, Ravindra; Rao, Basuthkar J.; Asgeirsson, Bjarni; Dandekar, Abhaya M.

    2013-01-01

    Predicting the three dimensional native state structure of a protein from its primary sequence is an unsolved grand challenge in molecular biology. Two main computational approaches have evolved to obtain the structure from the protein sequence - ab initio/de novo methods and template-based modeling - both of which typically generate multiple possible native state structures. Model quality assessment programs (MQAP) validate these predicted structures in order to identify the correct native state structure. Here, we propose a MQAP for assessing the quality of protein structures based on the distances of consecutive Cα atoms. We hypothesize that the root-mean-square deviation of the distance of consecutive Cα (RDCC) atoms from the ideal value of 3.8 Å, derived from a statistical analysis of high quality protein structures (top100H database), is minimized in native structures. Based on tests with the top100H set, we propose a RDCC cutoff value of 0.012 Å, above which a structure can be filtered out as a non-native structure. We applied the RDCC discriminator on decoy sets from the Decoys 'R' Us database to show that the native structures in all decoy sets tested have RDCC below the 0.012 Å cutoff. While most decoy sets were either indistinguishable using this discriminator or had very few violations, all the decoy structures in the fisa decoy set were discriminated by applying the RDCC criterion. This highlights the physical non-viability of the fisa decoy set, and possible issues in benchmarking other methods using this set. The source code and manual is made available at https://github.com/sanchak/mqap and permanently available on 10.5281/zenodo.7134. PMID:24555103

  19. Critical Features of Fragment Libraries for Protein Structure Prediction.

    PubMed

    Trevizani, Raphael; Custódio, Fábio Lima; Dos Santos, Karina Baptista; Dardenne, Laurent Emmanuel

    2017-01-01

    The use of fragment libraries is a popular approach among protein structure prediction methods and has proven to substantially improve the quality of predicted structures. However, some vital aspects of a fragment library that influence the accuracy of modeling a native structure remain to be determined. This study investigates some of these features. Particularly, we analyze the effect of using secondary structure prediction guiding fragments selection, different fragments sizes and the effect of structural clustering of fragments within libraries. To have a clearer view of how these factors affect protein structure prediction, we isolated the process of model building by fragment assembly from some common limitations associated with prediction methods, e.g., imprecise energy functions and optimization algorithms, by employing an exact structure-based objective function under a greedy algorithm. Our results indicate that shorter fragments reproduce the native structure more accurately than the longer. Libraries composed of multiple fragment lengths generate even better structures, where longer fragments show to be more useful at the beginning of the simulations. The use of many different fragment sizes shows little improvement when compared to predictions carried out with libraries that comprise only three different fragment sizes. Models obtained from libraries built using only sequence similarity are, on average, better than those built with a secondary structure prediction bias. However, we found that the use of secondary structure prediction allows greater reduction of the search space, which is invaluable for prediction methods. The results of this study can be critical guidelines for the use of fragment libraries in protein structure prediction.

  20. Critical Features of Fragment Libraries for Protein Structure Prediction

    PubMed Central

    dos Santos, Karina Baptista

    2017-01-01

    The use of fragment libraries is a popular approach among protein structure prediction methods and has proven to substantially improve the quality of predicted structures. However, some vital aspects of a fragment library that influence the accuracy of modeling a native structure remain to be determined. This study investigates some of these features. Particularly, we analyze the effect of using secondary structure prediction guiding fragments selection, different fragments sizes and the effect of structural clustering of fragments within libraries. To have a clearer view of how these factors affect protein structure prediction, we isolated the process of model building by fragment assembly from some common limitations associated with prediction methods, e.g., imprecise energy functions and optimization algorithms, by employing an exact structure-based objective function under a greedy algorithm. Our results indicate that shorter fragments reproduce the native structure more accurately than the longer. Libraries composed of multiple fragment lengths generate even better structures, where longer fragments show to be more useful at the beginning of the simulations. The use of many different fragment sizes shows little improvement when compared to predictions carried out with libraries that comprise only three different fragment sizes. Models obtained from libraries built using only sequence similarity are, on average, better than those built with a secondary structure prediction bias. However, we found that the use of secondary structure prediction allows greater reduction of the search space, which is invaluable for prediction methods. The results of this study can be critical guidelines for the use of fragment libraries in protein structure prediction. PMID:28085928

  1. MUFOLD: A new solution for protein 3D structure prediction.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Jingfen; Wang, Qingguo; Barz, Bogdan; He, Zhiquan; Kosztin, Ioan; Shang, Yi; Xu, Dong

    2010-04-01

    There have been steady improvements in protein structure prediction during the past 2 decades. However, current methods are still far from consistently predicting structural models accurately with computing power accessible to common users. Toward achieving more accurate and efficient structure prediction, we developed a number of novel methods and integrated them into a software package, MUFOLD. First, a systematic protocol was developed to identify useful templates and fragments from Protein Data Bank for a given target protein. Then, an efficient process was applied for iterative coarse-grain model generation and evaluation at the Calpha or backbone level. In this process, we construct models using interresidue spatial restraints derived from alignments by multidimensional scaling, evaluate and select models through clustering and static scoring functions, and iteratively improve the selected models by integrating spatial restraints and previous models. Finally, the full-atom models were evaluated using molecular dynamics simulations based on structural changes under simulated heating. We have continuously improved the performance of MUFOLD by using a benchmark of 200 proteins from the Astral database, where no template with >25% sequence identity to any target protein is included. The average root-mean-square deviation of the best models from the native structures is 4.28 A, which shows significant and systematic improvement over our previous methods. The computing time of MUFOLD is much shorter than many other tools, such as Rosetta. MUFOLD demonstrated some success in the 2008 community-wide experiment for protein structure prediction CASP8.

  2. Approximate calculation and experimental derivation of native isoelectric points of membrane protein complexes of Arabidopsis chloroplasts and mitochondria.

    PubMed

    Behrens, Christof; Hartmann, Kristina; Sunderhaus, Stephanie; Braun, Hans-Peter; Eubel, Holger

    2013-03-01

    Electric charges are important intrinsic properties of proteins. They directly affect functionality and also mediate interactions with other molecules such as cofactors, substrates and regulators of enzymatic activity, with lipids as well as other proteins. As such, analysis of the electric properties of proteins gives rise to improved understanding of the mechanism by which proteins fulfil their specific functions. This is not only true for singular proteins but also applies for defined assemblies of proteins, protein complexes and supercomplexes. Charges in proteins often are a consequence of the presence of basic and acidic amino acid residues within polypeptide chains. In liquid phase, charge distributions of proteins change in response to the pH of their environment. The interdependence of protein charge and the surrounding pH is best described by the isoelectric point, which is notoriously difficult to obtain for native protein complexes. Here, experimentally derived native isoelectric points (npIs) for a range mitochondrial and plastid protein complexes are provided. In addition, for four complexes, npIs were calculated by a novel approach which yields results largely matching the experimental npIs.

  3. Differences in folate-protein interactions result in differing inhibition of native rat liver and recombinant glycine N-methyltransferase by 5-methyltetrahydrofolate

    SciTech Connect

    Luka, Zigmund; Pakhomova, Svetlana; Loukachevitch, Lioudmila V; Newcomer, Marcia E; Wagner, Conrad

    2012-06-27

    Glycine N-methyltransferase (GNMT) is a key regulatory enzyme in methyl group metabolism. In mammalian liver it reduces S-adenosylmethionine levels by using it to methylate glycine, producing N-methylglycine (sarcosine) and S-adenosylhomocysteine. GNMT is inhibited by binding two molecules of 5-methyltetrahydrofolate (mono- or polyglutamate forms) per tetramer of the active enzyme. Inhibition is sensitive to the status of the N-terminal valine of GNMT and to polyglutamation of the folate inhibitor. It is inhibited by pentaglutamate form more efficiently compared to monoglutamate form. The native rat liver GNMT contains an acetylated N-terminal valine and is inhibited much more efficiently compared to the recombinant protein expressed in E. coli where the N-terminus is not acetylated. In this work we used a protein crystallography approach to evaluate the structural basis for these differences. We show that in the folate-GNMT complexes with the native enzyme, two folate molecules establish three and four hydrogen bonds with the protein. In the folate-recombinant GNMT complex only one hydrogen bond is established. This difference results in more effective inhibition by folate of the native liver GNMT activity compared to the recombinant enzyme.

  4. Structure of the native (unligated) mannose-specific bulb lectin from Scilla campanulata (bluebell) at 1.7 A resolution.

    PubMed

    Wood, S D; Wright, L M; Reynolds, C D; Rizkallah, P J; Allen, A K; Peumans, W J; Van Damme, E J

    1999-07-01

    The X-ray crystal structure of native Scilla campanulata agglutinin, a mannose-specific lectin from bluebell bulbs and a member of the Liliaceae family, has been determined by molecular replacement and refined to an R value of 0.186 at 1.7 A resolution. The lectin crystallizes in space group P21212 with unit-cell parameters a = 70. 42, b = 92.95, c = 46.64 A. The unit cell contains eight protein molecules of Mr = 13143 Da (119 amino-acid residues). The asymmetric unit comprises two chemically identical molecules, A and B, related by a non-crystallographic twofold axis perpendicular to c. This dimer further associates by crystallographic twofold symmetry to form a tetramer. The fold of the polypeptide backbone closely resembles that found in the lectins from Galanthus nivalis (snowdrop) and Hippeastrum (amaryllis) and contains a threefold symmetric beta-prism made up of three antiparallel four-stranded beta-sheets. Each of the four-stranded beta-sheets (I, II and III) possesses a potential saccharide-binding site containing conserved residues; however, site II has two mutations relative to sites I and III which may prevent ligation at this site. Our study provides the first accurate and detailed description of a native (unligated) structure from this superfamily of mannose-specific bulb lectins and will allow comparisons with a number of lectin-saccharide complexes which have already been determined or are currently under investigation.

  5. Total Chemical Synthesis of Dengue 2 Virus Capsid Protein via Native Chemical Ligation: Role of the Conserved Salt-bridge1

    PubMed Central

    Zhan, Changyou; Zhao, Le; Chen, Xishan; Lu, Wei-Yue; Lu, Wuyuan

    2013-01-01

    The dengue capsid protein C is a highly basic alpha-helical protein of ~100 amino acid residues that forms an emphipathic homodimer to encapsidate the viral genome and to interact with viral membranes. The solution structure of dengue 2 capsid protein C (DEN2C) has been determined by NMR spectroscopy, revealing a large dimer interface formed almost exclusively by hydrophobic residues. The only acidic residue (Glu87) conserved in the capsid proteins of all four serotypes of dengue virus forms a salt bridge with the side chains of Lys45 and Arg55′. To understand the structural and functional significance of this conserved salt bridge, we chemically synthesized an N-terminally truncated form of DEN2C (WTDEN2C) and its salt bridge-void analog E87ADEN2C using the native chemical ligation technique developed by Kent and colleagues. Comparative biochemical and biophysical studies of these two synthetic proteins using circular dichroism spectroscopy, fluorescence polarization, protein thermal denaturation, and proteolytic susceptibility assay demonstrated that the conserved salt bridge contributed to DEN2C dimerization and stability as well as its resistance to proteolytic degradation. Our work provided insight into the role of a fully conserved structural element of the dengue capsid protein C and paved the way for additional functional studies of this important viral protein. PMID:23673222

  6. Generating recombinant C-terminal prion protein fragments of exact native sequence.

    PubMed

    Johanssen, V A; Barnham, K J; Masters, C L; Hill, A F; Collins, S J

    2012-02-01

    Transmissibility and distinctive neuropathology are hallmark features of prion diseases differentiating them from other neurodegenerative disorders, with pathogenesis and transmission appearing closely linked to misfolded conformers (PrP(Sc)) of the ubiquitously expressed cellular form of the prion protein (PrP(C)). Given the apparent pathogenic primacy of misfolded PrP, the utilisation of peptides based on the prion protein has formed an integral approach for providing insights into misfolding pathways and pathogenic mechanisms. In parallel with studies employing prion peptides, similar approaches in other neurodegenerative disorders such as Alzheimer Disease, have demonstrated that differential processing of parent proteins and quite minor variations in the primary sequence of cognate peptides generated from the same constitutive processing (such as Aβ1-40 versus Aβ1-42 produced from γ-secretase activity) can be associated with very different pathogenic consequences. PrP(C) also undergoes constitutive α- or β-cleavage yielding C1 (residues 112-231 human sequence) or C2 (residues 90-231), respectively, with the full cell biological significance of such processing unresolved; however, it is noteworthy that in prion diseases, such as Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (CJD) and murine models, the moderately extended C2 fragment predominates in the brain suggesting that the two cleavage events and the consequent C-terminal fragments may differ in their pathogenic significance. Accordingly, studies characterising biologically relevant peptides like C1 and C2, would be most valid if undertaken using peptides completely free of any inherent non-native sequence that arises as a by-product of commonly employed recombinant production techniques. To achieve this aim and thereby facilitate more representative biophysical and neurotoxicity studies, we adapted the combination of high fidelity Taq TA cloning with a SUMO-Hexa-His tag-type approach, incorporating the SUMO protease

  7. Decoding Structural Properties of a Partially Unfolded Protein Substrate: En Route to Chaperone Binding

    PubMed Central

    Nagpal, Suhani; Tiwari, Satyam; Mapa, Koyeli; Thukral, Lipi

    2015-01-01

    Many proteins comprising of complex topologies require molecular chaperones to achieve their unique three-dimensional folded structure. The E.coli chaperone, GroEL binds with a large number of unfolded and partially folded proteins, to facilitate proper folding and prevent misfolding and aggregation. Although the major structural components of GroEL are well defined, scaffolds of the non-native substrates that determine chaperone-mediated folding have been difficult to recognize. Here we performed all-atomistic and replica-exchange molecular dynamics simulations to dissect non-native ensemble of an obligate GroEL folder, DapA. Thermodynamics analyses of unfolding simulations revealed populated intermediates with distinct structural characteristics. We found that surface exposed hydrophobic patches are significantly increased, primarily contributed from native and non-native β-sheet elements. We validate the structural properties of these conformers using experimental data, including circular dichroism (CD), 1-anilinonaphthalene-8-sulfonic acid (ANS) binding measurements and previously reported hydrogen-deutrium exchange coupled to mass spectrometry (HDX-MS). Further, we constructed network graphs to elucidate long-range intra-protein connectivity of native and intermediate topologies, demonstrating regions that serve as central “hubs”. Overall, our results implicate that genomic variations (or mutations) in the distinct regions of protein structures might disrupt these topological signatures disabling chaperone-mediated folding, leading to formation of aggregates. PMID:26394388

  8. Decoding Structural Properties of a Partially Unfolded Protein Substrate: En Route to Chaperone Binding.

    PubMed

    Nagpal, Suhani; Tiwari, Satyam; Mapa, Koyeli; Thukral, Lipi

    2015-01-01

    Many proteins comprising of complex topologies require molecular chaperones to achieve their unique three-dimensional folded structure. The E.coli chaperone, GroEL binds with a large number of unfolded and partially folded proteins, to facilitate proper folding and prevent misfolding and aggregation. Although the major structural components of GroEL are well defined, scaffolds of the non-native substrates that determine chaperone-mediated folding have been difficult to recognize. Here we performed all-atomistic and replica-exchange molecular dynamics simulations to dissect non-native ensemble of an obligate GroEL folder, DapA. Thermodynamics analyses of unfolding simulations revealed populated intermediates with distinct structural characteristics. We found that surface exposed hydrophobic patches are significantly increased, primarily contributed from native and non-native β-sheet elements. We validate the structural properties of these conformers using experimental data, including circular dichroism (CD), 1-anilinonaphthalene-8-sulfonic acid (ANS) binding measurements and previously reported hydrogen-deutrium exchange coupled to mass spectrometry (HDX-MS). Further, we constructed network graphs to elucidate long-range intra-protein connectivity of native and intermediate topologies, demonstrating regions that serve as central "hubs". Overall, our results implicate that genomic variations (or mutations) in the distinct regions of protein structures might disrupt these topological signatures disabling chaperone-mediated folding, leading to formation of aggregates.

  9. Nanobodies: site-specific labeling for super-resolution imaging, rapid epitope-mapping and native protein complex isolation

    PubMed Central

    Pleiner, Tino; Bates, Mark; Trakhanov, Sergei; Lee, Chung-Tien; Schliep, Jan Erik; Chug, Hema; Böhning, Marc; Stark, Holger; Urlaub, Henning; Görlich, Dirk

    2015-01-01

    Nanobodies are single-domain antibodies of camelid origin. We generated nanobodies against the vertebrate nuclear pore complex (NPC) and used them in STORM imaging to locate individual NPC proteins with <2 nm epitope-label displacement. For this, we introduced cysteines at specific positions in the nanobody sequence and labeled the resulting proteins with fluorophore-maleimides. As nanobodies are normally stabilized by disulfide-bonded cysteines, this appears counterintuitive. Yet, our analysis showed that this caused no folding problems. Compared to traditional NHS ester-labeling of lysines, the cysteine-maleimide strategy resulted in far less background in fluorescence imaging, it better preserved epitope recognition and it is site-specific. We also devised a rapid epitope-mapping strategy, which relies on crosslinking mass spectrometry and the introduced ectopic cysteines. Finally, we used different anti-nucleoporin nanobodies to purify the major NPC building blocks – each in a single step, with native elution and, as demonstrated, in excellent quality for structural analysis by electron microscopy. The presented strategies are applicable to any nanobody and nanobody-target. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.11349.001 PMID:26633879

  10. Genetic Structure of Pacific Trout at the Extreme Southern End of Their Native Range

    PubMed Central

    Abadía-Cardoso, Alicia; Garza, John Carlos; Mayden, Richard L.; García de León, Francisco Javier

    2015-01-01

    Salmonid fishes are cold water piscivores with a native distribution spanning nearly the entire temperate and subarctic northern hemisphere. Trout in the genus Oncorhynchus are the most widespread salmonid fishes and are among the most important fish species in the world, due to their extensive use in aquaculture and valuable fisheries. Trout that inhabit northwestern Mexico are the southernmost native salmonid populations in the world, and the least studied in North America. They are unfortunately also facing threats to their continued existence. Previous work has described one endemic species, the Mexican golden trout (O. chrysogaster), and one endemic subspecies, Nelson’s trout (O. mykiss nelsoni), in Mexico, but previous work indicated that there is vastly more biodiversity in this group than formally described. Here we conducted a comprehensive genetic analysis of this important group of fishes using novel genetic markers and techniques to elucidate the biodiversity of trout inhabiting northwestern Mexico, examine genetic population structure of Mexican trout and their relationships to other species of Pacific trout, and measure introgression from non-native hatchery rainbow trout. We confirmed substantial genetic diversity and extremely strong genetic differentiation present in the Mexican trout complex, not only between basins but also between some locations within basins, with at least four species-level taxa present. We also revealed significant divergence between Mexican trout and other trout species and found that introgression from non-native rainbow trout is present but limited, and that the genetic integrity of native trout is still maintained in most locations. This information will help to guide effective conservation strategies for this important group of fishes. PMID:26509445

  11. Effects of hay management and native species sowing on grassland community structure, biomass, and restoration.

    PubMed

    Foster, Bryan L; Kindscher, Kelly; Houseman, Greg R; Murphy, Cheryl A

    2009-10-01

    Prairie hay meadows are important reservoirs of grassland biodiversity in the tallgrass prairie regions of the central United States and are the object of increasing attention for conservation and restoration. In addition, there is growing interest in the potential use of such low-input, high-diversity (LIHD) native grasslands for biofuel production. The uplands of eastern Kansas, USA, which prior to European settlement were dominated by tallgrass prairie, are currently utilized for intensive agriculture or exist in a state of abandonment from agriculture. The dominant grasslands in the region are currently high-input, low-diversity (HILD) hay fields seeded to introduced C3 hay grasses. We present results from a long-term experiment conducted in a recently abandoned HILD hay field in eastern Kansas to evaluate effects of fertilization, haying, and native species sowing on community dynamics, biomass, and potential for restoration to native LIHD hay meadow. Fertilized plots maintained dominance by introduced grasses, maintained low diversity, and were largely resistant to colonization throughout the study. Non-fertilized plots exhibited rapid successional turnover, increased diversity, and increased abundance of C4 grasses over time. Haying led to modest changes in species composition and lessened the negative impact of fertilization on diversity. In non-fertilized plots, sowing increased representation by native species and increased diversity, successional turnover, and biomass production. Our results support the shifting limitations hypothesis of community organization and highlight the importance of species pools and seed limitations in constraining successional turnover, community structure, and ecosystem productivity under conditions of low fertility. Our findings also indicate that several biological and functional aspects of LIHD hay meadows can be restored from abandoned HILD hay fields by ceasing fertilization and reintroducing native species through

  12. Behavior of native microbial populations of WPC-34 and WPC-80 whey protein stored at different temperatures

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Whey protein (WPC34 and 80) has been used as food ingredients and as a base for making biodegradable product. However, there is limited information on the behavior of native microflora associated with these products. WPC 34 and WPC80 were obtained from the manufacturer, and were stored at 5, 10, 15,...

  13. A mathematical framework for protein structure comparison.

    PubMed

    Liu, Wei; Srivastava, Anuj; Zhang, Jinfeng

    2011-02-03

    Comparison of protein structures is important for revealing the evolutionary relationship among proteins, predicting protein functions and predicting protein structures. Many methods have been developed in the past to align two or multiple protein structures. Despite the importance of this problem, rigorous mathematical or statistical frameworks have seldom been pursued for general protein structure comparison. One notable issue in this field is that with many different distances used to measure the similarity between protein structures, none of them are proper distances when protein structures of different sequences are compared. Statistical approaches based on those non-proper distances or similarity scores as random variables are thus not mathematically rigorous. In this work, we develop a mathematical framework for protein structure comparison by treating protein structures as three-dimensional curves. Using an elastic Riemannian metric on spaces of curves, geodesic distance, a proper distance on spaces of curves, can be computed for any two protein structures. In this framework, protein structures can be treated as random variables on the shape manifold, and means and covariance can be computed for populations of protein structures. Furthermore, these moments can be used to build Gaussian-type probability distributions of protein structures for use in hypothesis testing. The covariance of a population of protein structures can reveal the population-specific variations and be helpful in improving structure classification. With curves representing protein structures, the matching is performed using elastic shape analysis of curves, which can effectively model conformational changes and insertions/deletions. We show that our method performs comparably with commonly used methods in protein structure classification on a large manually annotated data set.

  14. Metalloenzyme Design and Engineering through Strategic Modifications of Native Protein Scaffolds

    PubMed Central

    Petrik, Igor D.; Liu, Jing; Lu, Yi

    2014-01-01

    Metalloenzymes are among the major targets of protein design and engineering efforts aimed at attaining novel and efficient catalysis for biochemical transformation and biomedical applications, due to the diversity of functions imparted by the metallo-cofactors along with the versatility of the protein environment. Naturally evolved protein scaffolds can often serve as robust foundations for sustaining artificial active sites constructed by rational design, directed evolution, or a combination of the two strategies. Accumulated knowledge of structure-function relationship and advancement of tools such as computational algorithms and unnatural amino acids incorporation all contribute to the design of better metalloenzymes with catalytic properties approaching the needs of practical applications. PMID:24513641

  15. Crystal structure of native and Cd/Cd-substituted Dioclea guianensis seed lectin. A novel manganese-binding site and structural basis of dimer-tetramer association.

    PubMed

    Wah, D A; Romero, A; Gallego del Sol, F; Cavada, B S; Ramos, M V; Grangeiro, T B; Sampaio, A H; Calvete, J J

    2001-07-20

    Diocleinae legume lectins are a group of oligomeric proteins whose subunits display a high degree of primary structure and tertiary fold conservation but exhibit considerable diversity in their oligomerisation modes. To elucidate the structural determinants underlaying Diocleinae lectin oligomerisation, we have determined the crystal structures of native and cadmium-substituted Dioclea guianensis (Dguia) seed lectin. These structures have been solved by molecular replacement using concanavalin (ConA) coordinates as the starting model, and refined against data to 2.0 A resolution. In the native (Mn/Ca-Dguia) crystal form (P4(3)2(1)2), the asymmetric unit contains two monomers arranged into a canonical legume lectin dimer, and the tetramer is formed with a symmetry-related dimer. In the Cd/Cd-substituted form (I4(1)22), the asymmetric unit is occupied by a monomer. In both crystal forms, the tetrameric association is achieved by the corresponding symmetry operators. Like other legume lectins, native D. guianensis lectin contains manganese and calcium ions bound in the vicinity of the saccharide-combining site. The architecture of these metal-binding sites (S1 and S2) changed only slightly in the cadmium/cadmium-substituted form. A highly ordered calcium (native lectin) or cadmium (Cd/Cd-substituted lectin) ion is coordinated at the interface between dimers that are not tetrameric partners in a similar manner as the previously identified Cd(2+) in site S3 of a Cd/Ca-ConA. An additional Mn(2+) coordination site (called S5), whose presence has not been reported in crystal structures of any other homologous lectin, is present in both, the Mn/Ca and the Cd/Cd-substituted D. guianensis lectin forms. On the other hand, comparison of the primary and quaternary crystal structures of seed lectins from D. guianensis and Dioclea grandiflora (1DGL) indicates that the loop comprising residues 117-123 is ordered to make interdimer contacts in the D. grandiflora lectin structure

  16. Introduction to Protein Structure through Genetic Diseases

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Schneider, Tanya L.; Linton, Brian R.

    2008-01-01

    An illuminating way to learn about protein function is to explore high-resolution protein structures. Analysis of the proteins involved in genetic diseases has been used to introduce students to protein structure and the role that individual mutations can play in the onset of disease. Known mutations can be correlated to changes in protein…

  17. Characterization of membrane protein non-native states. 2. The SDS-unfolded states of rhodopsin†

    PubMed Central

    Dutta, Arpana; Kim, Tai-Yang; Moeller, Martina; Wu, Jenny; Alexiev, Ulrike; Klein-Seetharaman, Judith

    2010-01-01

    Little is known about the molecular nature of residual structure in unfolded states of membrane proteins. A screen of chemical denaturants to maximally unfold the mammalian membrane protein and prototypic G protein coupled receptor rhodopsin, without interference from aggregation – described in an accompanying paper (Dutta et al., 2010 ibid.) identified sodium dodecyl sulfate (SDS), alone or in combination with other chemicals, as the most suitable denaturant. Here, we initiate the biophysical characterization of SDS-denatured states of rhodopsin. Using absorption, steady-state and time-resolved fluorescence spectroscopy, dynamic light scattering and cysteine accessibility studies, tertiary structure of denatured states was characterized. In agreement with the pattern of secondary structure changes detected by circular dichroism described in the accompanying paper, tertiary structure changes are distinct over four SDS concentration ranges based on the expected predominant micellar structures. Dodecyl maltoside (DM)/SDS mixed micelle spheres (0.05-0.3% SDS) turn into SDS spheres (0.3-3% SDS) that gradually (3-15% SDS) become cylindrical (above 15% SDS). Denatured states in SDS spheres and cylinders show a relatively greater burial of cysteine and tryptophan residues and are more compact as compared to the states observed in mixed micellar structures. Protein structural changes at the membrane/water interface region are most prominent at very low SDS concentrations but reach transient stability in the compact conformations in SDS spheres. This is the first experimental evidence for the formation of a compact unfolding intermediate state with flexible surface elements in a membrane protein. PMID:20575562

  18. Factor Structure Evaluation of the French Version of the Digital Natives Assessment Scale.

    PubMed

    Wagner, Vincent; Acier, Didier

    2017-03-01

    "Digital natives" concept defines young adults particularly familiar with emerging technologies such as computers, smartphones, or Internet. This notion is still controversial and so far, the primary identifying criterion was to consider their date of birth. However, literature highlighted the need to describe specific characteristics. The purpose of this research was to evaluate the factor structure of a French version of the Digital Natives Assessment Scale (DNAS). The sample of this study includes 590 participants from a 6-week massive open online course and from Web sites, electronic forums, and social networks. The DNAS was translated in French and then back-translated to English. A principal component analysis with orthogonal rotation followed by a confirmatory factorial analysis showed that a 15-item four-correlated component model provided the best fit for the data of our sample. Factor structure of this French-translated version of the DNAS was rather similar than those found in earlier studies. This study provides evidence of the DNAS robustness through cross-cultural and cross-generational validation. The French version of the DNAS appears to be appropriate as a quick and effective questionnaire to assess digital natives. More studies are needed to better define further features of this particular group.

  19. Recombinant Minimalist Spider Wrapping Silk Proteins Capable of Native-Like Fiber Formation

    PubMed Central

    Xu, Lingling; Rainey, Jan K.; Meng, Qing; Liu, Xiang-Qin

    2012-01-01

    Spider silks are desirable biomaterials characterized by high tensile strength, elasticity, and biocompatibility. Spiders produce different types of silks for different uses, although dragline silks have been the predominant focus of previous studies. Spider wrapping silk, made of the aciniform protein (AcSp1), has high toughness because of its combination of high elasticity and tensile strength. AcSp1 in Argiope trifasciata contains a 200-aa sequence motif that is repeated at least 14 times. Here, we produced in E. coli recombinant proteins consisting of only one to four of the 200-aa AcSp1 repeats, designated W1 to W4. We observed that purified W2, W3 and W4 proteins could be induced to form silk-like fibers by shear forces in a physiological buffer. The fibers formed by W4 were ∼3.4 µm in diameter and up to 10 cm long. They showed an average tensile strength of 115 MPa, elasticity of 37%, and toughness of 34 J cm−3. The smaller W2 protein formed fewer fibers and required a higher protein concentration to form fibers, whereas the smallest W1 protein did not form silk-like fibers, indicating that a minimum of two of the 200-aa repeats was required for fiber formation. Microscopic examinations revealed structural features indicating an assembly of the proteins into spherical structures, fibrils, and silk-like fibers. CD and Raman spectral analysis of protein secondary structures suggested a transition from predominantly α-helical in solution to increasingly β-sheet in fibers. PMID:23209681

  20. Structural studies of human glioma pathogenesis-related protein 1

    SciTech Connect

    Asojo, Oluwatoyin A.; Koski, Raymond A.; Bonafé, Nathalie

    2011-10-01

    Structural analysis of a truncated soluble domain of human glioma pathogenesis-related protein 1, a membrane protein implicated in the proliferation of aggressive brain cancer, is presented. Human glioma pathogenesis-related protein 1 (GLIPR1) is a membrane protein that is highly upregulated in brain cancers but is barely detectable in normal brain tissue. GLIPR1 is composed of a signal peptide that directs its secretion, a conserved cysteine-rich CAP (cysteine-rich secretory proteins, antigen 5 and pathogenesis-related 1 proteins) domain and a transmembrane domain. GLIPR1 is currently being investigated as a candidate for prostate cancer gene therapy and for glioblastoma targeted therapy. Crystal structures of a truncated soluble domain of the human GLIPR1 protein (sGLIPR1) solved by molecular replacement using a truncated polyalanine search model of the CAP domain of stecrisp, a snake-venom cysteine-rich secretory protein (CRISP), are presented. The correct molecular-replacement solution could only be obtained by removing all loops from the search model. The native structure was refined to 1.85 Å resolution and that of a Zn{sup 2+} complex was refined to 2.2 Å resolution. The latter structure revealed that the putative binding cavity coordinates Zn{sup 2+} similarly to snake-venom CRISPs, which are involved in Zn{sup 2+}-dependent mechanisms of inflammatory modulation. Both sGLIPR1 structures have extensive flexible loop/turn regions and unique charge distributions that were not observed in any of the previously reported CAP protein structures. A model is also proposed for the structure of full-length membrane-bound GLIPR1.

  1. A carrier protein strategy yields the structure of dalbavancin

    PubMed Central

    Economou, Nicoleta J.; Nahoum, Virginie; Weeks, Stephen D.; Grasty, Kimberly C.; Zentner, Isaac J.; Townsend, Tracy M.; Bhuiya, Mohammad W.; Cocklin, Simon; Loll, Patrick J.

    2012-01-01

    Many large natural product antibiotics act by specifically binding and sequestering target molecules found on bacterial cells. We have developed a new strategy to expedite the structural analysis of such antibiotic-target complexes, in which we covalently link the target molecules to carrier proteins, and then crystallize the entire carrier/target/antibiotic complex. Using native chemical ligation, we have linked the Lys-d-Ala-d-Ala binding epitope for glycopeptide antibiotics to three different carrier proteins. We show that recognition of this peptide by multiple antibiotics is not compromised by the presence of the carrier protein partner, and use this approach to determine the first-ever crystal structure for the new therapeutic dalbavancin. We also report the first crystal structure of an asymmetric ristocetin antibiotic dimer, as well as the structure of vancomycin bound to a carrier-target fusion. The dalbavancin structure reveals an antibiotic molecule that has closed around its binding partner; it also suggests mechanisms by which the drug can enhance its half-life by binding to serum proteins, and be targeted to bacterial membranes. Notably, the carrier protein approach is not limited to peptide ligands such as Lys-d-Ala-d-Ala, but is applicable to a diverse range of targets. This strategy is likely to yield structural insights that accelerate new therapeutic development. PMID:22352468

  2. An Interactive Introduction to Protein Structure

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lee, W. Theodore

    2004-01-01

    To improve student understanding of protein structure and the significance of noncovalent interactions in protein structure and function, students are assigned a project to write a paper complemented with computer-generated images. The assignment provides an opportunity for students to select a protein structure that is of interest and detail…

  3. Fidelity of the protein structure reconstruction from inter-residue proximity constraints.

    PubMed

    Chen, Yiwen; Ding, Feng; Dokholyan, Nikolay V

    2007-06-28

    Inter-residue proximity constraints obtained in such experiments as cross-linking/mass spectrometry are important sources of information for protein structure determination. A central question in structure determination using these constraints is, What is the minimal number of inter-residue constraints needed to determine the fold of a protein? It is also unknown how the different structural aspects of constraints differentiate their ability in determining the native fold and whether there is a rational strategy for selecting constraints that feature higher fidelity in structure determination. To shed light on these questions, we study the fidelity of protein fold determination using theoretical inter-residue proximity constraints derived from protein native structures and the effect of various subsets of such constraints on fold determination. We show that approximately 70% randomly selected constraints are sufficient for determining the fold of a domain (with an average root-mean-square deviation of native structures). We find that random constraint selection often outperforms the rational strategy that predominantly favors the constraints representing global structural features. To uncover a strategy for constraint selection for the optimal structure determination, we study the role of the topological properties of these constraints. Interestingly, we do not observe any correlation between various simple topological properties of the selected constraints, emphasizing different global and local structural features, and the performance of these constraints, suggesting that accurate protein structure determination relies on a composite of global and local structural information.

  4. Atomic structure of granulin determined from native nanocrystalline granulovirus using an X-ray free-electron laser.

    PubMed

    Gati, Cornelius; Oberthuer, Dominik; Yefanov, Oleksandr; Bunker, Richard D; Stellato, Francesco; Chiu, Elaine; Yeh, Shin-Mei; Aquila, Andrew; Basu, Shibom; Bean, Richard; Beyerlein, Kenneth R; Botha, Sabine; Boutet, Sébastien; DePonte, Daniel P; Doak, R Bruce; Fromme, Raimund; Galli, Lorenzo; Grotjohann, Ingo; James, Daniel R; Kupitz, Christopher; Lomb, Lukas; Messerschmidt, Marc; Nass, Karol; Rendek, Kimberly; Shoeman, Robert L; Wang, Dingjie; Weierstall, Uwe; White, Thomas A; Williams, Garth J; Zatsepin, Nadia A; Fromme, Petra; Spence, John C H; Goldie, Kenneth N; Jehle, Johannes A; Metcalf, Peter; Barty, Anton; Chapman, Henry N

    2017-02-28

    To understand how molecules function in biological systems, new methods are required to obtain atomic resolution structures from biological material under physiological conditions. Intense femtosecond-duration pulses from X-ray free-electron lasers (XFELs) can outrun most damage processes, vastly increasing the tolerable dose before the specimen is destroyed. This in turn allows structure determination from crystals much smaller and more radiation sensitive than previously considered possible, allowing data collection from room temperature structures and avoiding structural changes due to cooling. Regardless, high-resolution structures obtained from XFEL data mostly use crystals far larger than 1 μm(3) in volume, whereas the X-ray beam is often attenuated to protect the detector from damage caused by intense Bragg spots. Here, we describe the 2 Å resolution structure of native nanocrystalline granulovirus occlusion bodies (OBs) that are less than 0.016 μm(3) in volume using the full power of the Linac Coherent Light Source (LCLS) and a dose up to 1.3 GGy per crystal. The crystalline shell of granulovirus OBs consists, on average, of about 9,000 unit cells, representing the smallest protein crystals to yield a high-resolution structure by X-ray crystallography to date. The XFEL structure shows little to no evidence of radiation damage and is more complete than a model determined using synchrotron data from recombinantly produced, much larger, cryocooled granulovirus granulin microcrystals. Our measurements suggest that it should be possible, under ideal experimental conditions, to obtain data from protein crystals with only 100 unit cells in volume using currently available XFELs and suggest that single-molecule imaging of individual biomolecules could almost be within reach.

  5. Blue native protein electrophoresis for studies of mouse polyomavirus morphogenesis and interactions between the major capsid protein VP1 and cellular proteins.

    PubMed

    Horníková, Lenka; Man, Petr; Forstová, Jitka

    2011-12-01

    Morphogenesis of the mouse polyomavirus virion is a complex and not yet well understood process. Nuclear lysates of infected cells and cells transiently producing the major capsid protein (VP1) of the mouse polyomavirus and whole-cell lysates were separated by blue native polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis (BN-PAGE) to characterize the participation of cellular proteins in virion precursor complexes. Several VP1-specific complexes were found by immunostaining with the anti-VP1 antibody. Some of these complexes contained proteins from the heat shock protein 70 family. The BN-PAGE was found to be a useful tool for the identification of protein complexes by immunostaining of separated cell lysates. However, whole-cell lysates and lysates of isolated nuclei of cells infected with polyomavirus appeared to be too complex for BN-PAGE separation followed by mass spectrometry. No distinct bands specific for cells infected with polyomavirus were detected by Coomassie blue stained gels, hence this method is not suitable for the discovery of new cellular proteins participating in virion assembly. Nevertheless, BN-PAGE can be valuable for the analyses of different types of complexes formed by proteins after their enrichment or isolation by affinity chromatography.

  6. A direct antigen-binding assay for detection of antibodies against native epitopes using alkaline phosphatase-tagged proteins.

    PubMed

    Baranov, Konstantin; Volkova, Olga; Chikaev, Nikolai; Mechetina, Ludmila; Laktionov, Pavel; Najakshin, Alexander; Taranin, Alexander

    2008-03-20

    We describe a simple and efficient method to detect antibodies against native epitopes following immunization with denatured proteins and peptides. With this method, soluble antigens genetically fused with placental alkaline phosphatase (AP) are used as probes to detect antibodies immobilized on nitrocellulose membranes. The AP-tagged proteins can be produced in sufficient amounts using transient transfection of eukaryotic cells with an appropriate cDNA fragment in a commercial AP-tag vector. The intrinsic thermo-stable phosphatase activity of a tagged protein obviates the need for its purification. To evaluate the method, three recently identified proteins of the FcR family, FCRLA, FCRL1, and FCRL4, were fused with AP and tested in a reaction with various polyclonal and monoclonal antibodies raised by immunization with bacterially produced antigens and peptide conjugates. All the three probes demonstrated high specificity in analysis of immune sera and hybridoma supernatants. Sensitivity of the assay varied depending on antibody tested and, in some cases, was in the subnanogram range. The results obtained show that AP-tagged proteins are useful tools for discrimination of antibodies against native epitopes when production of antigen in its native conformation is laborious and expensive.

  7. Protein Structure Determination by Assembling Super-Secondary Structure Motifs Using Pseudocontact Shifts.

    PubMed

    Pilla, Kala Bharath; Otting, Gottfried; Huber, Thomas

    2017-03-07

    Computational and nuclear magnetic resonance hybrid approaches provide efficient tools for 3D structure determination of small proteins, but currently available algorithms struggle to perform with larger proteins. Here we demonstrate a new computational algorithm that assembles the 3D structure of a protein from its constituent super-secondary structural motifs (Smotifs) with the help of pseudocontact shift (PCS) restraints for backbone amide protons, where the PCSs are produced from different metal centers. The algorithm, DINGO-PCS (3D assembly of Individual Smotifs to Near-native Geometry as Orchestrated by PCSs), employs the PCSs to recognize, orient, and assemble the constituent Smotifs of the target protein without any other experimental data or computational force fields. Using a universal Smotif database, the DINGO-PCS algorithm exhaustively enumerates any given Smotif. We benchmarked the program against ten different protein targets ranging from 100 to 220 residues with different topologies. For nine of these targets, the method was able to identify near-native Smotifs.

  8. Phthalocyanine tetrasulfonates bind to multiple sites on natively-folded prion protein.

    PubMed

    Dee, Derek R; Gupta, Amar Nath; Anikovskiy, Max; Sosova, Iveta; Grandi, Elena; Rivera, Laura; Vincent, Abhilash; Brigley, Angela M; Petersen, Nils O; Woodside, Michael T

    2012-06-01

    The phthalocyanine tetrasulfonates (PcTS), a class of cyclic tetrapyrroles, bind to the mammalian prion protein, PrP. Remarkably, they can act as anti-scrapie agents to prevent the formation and spread of infectious, misfolded PrP. While the effects of phthalocyanines on the diseased state have been investigated, the interaction between PcTS and PrP has not yet been extensively characterized. Here we use multiple, complementary assays (surface plasmon resonance, isothermal titration calorimetry, fluorescence correlation spectroscopy, and tryptophan fluorescence quenching) to characterize the binding of PcTS to natively-folded hamster PrP(90-232), in order to determine binding constants, ligand stoichiometry, influence of buffer ionic strength, and the effects of chelated metal ions. We found that binding strength depends strongly on chelated metal ions, with Al(3+)-PcTS binding the weakest and free-base PcTS the strongest of the three types tested (Al(3+), Zn(2+), and free-base). Buffer ionic strength also affected the binding, with K(d) increasing along with salt concentration. The binding isotherms indicated the presence of at least two different binding sites with micromolar affinities and a total stoichiometry of ~4-5 PcTS molecules per PrP molecule.

  9. Native herbivore exerts contrasting effects on fire regime and vegetation structure.

    PubMed

    Hierro, José L; Clark, Kenneth L; Branch, Lyn C; Villarreal, Diego

    2011-08-01

    Although native herbivores can alter fire regimes by consuming herbaceous vegetation that serves as fine fuel and, less commonly, accumulating fuel as nest material and other structures, simultaneous considerations of contrasting effects of herbivores on fire have scarcely been addressed. We proposed that a colonial rodent, vizcacha (Lagostomus maximus), reduces and increases fire intensity at different stages in its population cycle in the semiarid scrub of Argentina. Specifically, we hypothesized that, when colonies are active, vizcachas create natural fire-breaks through intense grazing, generating over time patches of large unburned shrubs in grazed zones. In contrast, when colonies are abandoned, recovery of fine fuels and previous accumulation of coarse wood on colonies during territorial displays increases fire intensity, creating patches of high shrub mortality. To test these hypotheses, we estimated stem age of the dominant shrub (Larrea divaricata) and measured aboveground biomass in zones actively grazed by vizcachas and in ungrazed zones, and compared densities of live and dead shrubs on abandoned colonies and adjacent zones following fire. In active colonies, age and biomass of shrubs were much greater in grazed than ungrazed zones. In abandoned colonies that had been burnt, density of dead, burned shrubs was higher and density of live shrubs was lower than in adjacent zones. These results support our hypotheses and reveal a new interaction between native herbivores and fire, in which herbivores augment fire intensity by gathering fuel. Our findings indicate that, through opposing effects on fire, native herbivores enhance the heterogeneity of vegetation in woody-dominated ecosystems.

  10. Folding processes of the B domain of protein A to the native state observed in all-atom ab initio folding simulations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lei, Hongxing; Wu, Chun; Wang, Zhi-Xiang; Zhou, Yaoqi; Duan, Yong

    2008-06-01

    Reaching the native states of small proteins, a necessary step towards a comprehensive understanding of the folding mechanisms, has remained a tremendous challenge to ab initio protein folding simulations despite the extensive effort. In this work, the folding process of the B domain of protein A (BdpA) has been simulated by both conventional and replica exchange molecular dynamics using AMBER FF03 all-atom force field. Started from an extended chain, a total of 40 conventional (each to 1.0 μs) and two sets of replica exchange (each to 200.0 ns per replica) molecular dynamics simulations were performed with different generalized-Born solvation models and temperature control schemes. The improvements in both the force field and solvent model allowed successful simulations of the folding process to the native state as demonstrated by the 0.80 A˚ Cα root mean square deviation (RMSD) of the best folded structure. The most populated conformation was the native folded structure with a high population. This was a significant improvement over the 2.8 A˚ Cα RMSD of the best nativelike structures from previous ab initio folding studies on BdpA. To the best of our knowledge, our results demonstrate, for the first time, that ab initio simulations can reach the native state of BdpA. Consistent with experimental observations, including Φ-value analyses, formation of helix II/III hairpin was a crucial step that provides a template upon which helix I could form and the folding process could complete. Early formation of helix III was observed which is consistent with the experimental results of higher residual helical content of isolated helix III among the three helices. The calculated temperature-dependent profile and the melting temperature were in close agreement with the experimental results. The simulations further revealed that phenylalanine 31 may play critical to achieve the correct packing of the three helices which is consistent with the experimental observation

  11. Modularity in protein structures: study on all-alpha proteins.

    PubMed

    Khan, Taushif; Ghosh, Indira

    2015-01-01

    Modularity is known as one of the most important features of protein's robust and efficient design. The architecture and topology of proteins play a vital role by providing necessary robust scaffolds to support organism's growth and survival in constant evolutionary pressure. These complex biomolecules can be represented by several layers of modular architecture, but it is pivotal to understand and explore the smallest biologically relevant structural component. In the present study, we have developed a component-based method, using protein's secondary structures and their arrangements (i.e. patterns) in order to investigate its structural space. Our result on all-alpha protein shows that the known structural space is highly populated with limited set of structural patterns. We have also noticed that these frequently observed structural patterns are present as modules or "building blocks" in large proteins (i.e. higher secondary structure content). From structural descriptor analysis, observed patterns are found to be within similar deviation; however, frequent patterns are found to be distinctly occurring in diverse functions e.g. in enzymatic classes and reactions. In this study, we are introducing a simple approach to explore protein structural space using combinatorial- and graph-based geometry methods, which can be used to describe modularity in protein structures. Moreover, analysis indicates that protein function seems to be the driving force that shapes the known structure space.

  12. Population Structure, Diversity and Reproductive Mode of the Grape Phylloxera (Daktulosphaira vitifoliae) across Its Native Range

    PubMed Central

    Walker, M. Andrew

    2017-01-01

    Grape Phylloxera, Daktulosphaira vitifoliae, is a gall-forming insect that feeds on the leaves and roots of many Vitis species. The roots of the cultivated V. vinifera cultivars and hybrids are highly susceptible to grape phylloxera feeding damage. The native range of this insect covers most of North America, and it is particularly abundant in the eastern and central United States. Phylloxera was introduced from North America to almost all grape-growing regions across five of the temperate zone continents. It devastated vineyards in each of these regions causing large-scale disruptions to grape growers, wine makers and national economies. In order to understand the population diversity of grape phylloxera in its native range, more than 500 samples from 19 States and 34 samples from the introduced range (northern California, Europe and South America) were genotyped with 32 simple sequence repeat markers. STRUCTURE, a model based clustering method identified five populations within these samples. The five populations were confirmed by a neighbor-joining tree and principal coordinate analysis (PCoA). These populations were distinguished by their Vitis species hosts and their geographic locations. Samples collected from California, Europe and South America traced back to phylloxera sampled in the northeastern United States on V. riparia, with some influence from phylloxera collected along the Atlantic Coast and Central Plains on V. vulpina. Reproductive statistics conclusively confirmed that sexual reproduction is common in the native range and is combined with cyclical parthenogenesis. Native grape phylloxera populations were identified to be under Hardy-Weinberg equilibrium. The identification of admixed samples between many of these populations indicates that shared environments facilitate sexual reproduction between different host associated populations to create new genotypes of phylloxera. This study also found that assortative mating might occur across the

  13. Native sulfur/chlorine SAD phasing for serial femtosecond crystallography

    SciTech Connect

    Nakane, Takanori; Song, Changyong; Suzuki, Mamoru; Nango, Eriko; Kobayashi, Jun; Masuda, Tetsuya; Inoue, Shigeyuki; Mizohata, Eiichi; Nakatsu, Toru; Tanaka, Tomoyuki; Tanaka, Rie; Shimamura, Tatsuro; Tono, Kensuke; Joti, Yasumasa; Kameshima, Takashi; Hatsui, Takaki; Yabashi, Makina; Nureki, Osamu; Iwata, So; Sugahara, Michihiro

    2015-11-27

    Sulfur SAD phasing facilitates the structure determination of diverse native proteins using femtosecond X-rays from free-electron lasers via serial femtosecond crystallography. Serial femtosecond crystallography (SFX) allows structures to be determined with minimal radiation damage. However, phasing native crystals in SFX is not very common. Here, the structure determination of native lysozyme from single-wavelength anomalous diffraction (SAD) by utilizing the anomalous signal of sulfur and chlorine at a wavelength of 1.77 Å is successfully demonstrated. This sulfur SAD method can be applied to a wide range of proteins, which will improve the determination of native crystal structures.

  14. Enhanced recognition of plasma proteins in a non-native state by complement C3b. A possible clearance mechanism for damaged proteins in blood.

    PubMed

    Ramadass, Mahalakshmi; Ghebrehiwet, Berhane; Kew, Richard R

    2015-03-01

    Complement C3 is a key fluid-phase protein of the immune system that covalently tags pathogenic cells and molecules for subsequent clearance. Previously, we reported that complement activation results in the formation of multiple C3b:plasma protein complexes in serum. However, it is not known if C3b attaches to any plasma protein in close proximity or preferentially binds damaged proteins. The objective of this study was to determine if C3b couples to plasma proteins in a non-native state and if this could be a potential mechanism to detect and clear damaged proteins from the blood. Using a purified in vitro system with alternative pathway proteins C3, factors B and D it was observed that guanidinium-HCl denaturation of three purified plasma proteins (albumin, alpha-1 proteinase inhibitor, vitamin D binding protein) greatly increased their capacity to form covalent complexes with C3b. However, native vitamin D binding protein, covalently attached to C3b, still retained the ability to bind its natural ligand G-actin, indicating that C3b links to plasma proteins in their native configuration but denaturation substantially increases this interaction. Serum complement activation generated a large number of C3b:plasma protein complexes that bound red blood cell membranes, suggesting a CR1-mediated clearance mechanism. Thermally denatured (60°C) serum activated the alternative pathway when added to fresh serum as evidenced by factor B cleavage and iC3b generation, but this heat-treated serum could not generate the pro-inflammatory peptide C5a. These results show that C3 recognizes and tags damaged plasma proteins for subsequent removal from the blood without triggering proinflammatory functions.

  15. Towards structure-based protein drug design.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Changsheng; Lai, Luhua

    2011-10-01

    Structure-based drug design for chemical molecules has been widely used in drug discovery in the last 30 years. Many successful applications have been reported, especially in the field of virtual screening based on molecular docking. Recently, there has been much progress in fragment-based as well as de novo drug discovery. As many protein-protein interactions can be used as key targets for drug design, one of the solutions is to design protein drugs based directly on the protein complexes or the target structure. Compared with protein-ligand interactions, protein-protein interactions are more complicated and present more challenges for design. Over the last decade, both sampling efficiency and scoring accuracy of protein-protein docking have increased significantly. We have developed several strategies for structure-based protein drug design. A grafting strategy for key interaction residues has been developed and successfully applied in designing erythropoietin receptor-binding proteins. Similarly to small-molecule design, we also tested de novo protein-binder design and a virtual screen of protein binders using protein-protein docking calculations. In comparison with the development of structure-based small-molecule drug design, we believe that structure-based protein drug design has come of age.

  16. Revealing Ligand Binding Sites and Quantifying Subunit Variants of Noncovalent Protein Complexes in a Single Native Top-Down FTICR MS Experiment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Huilin; Wongkongkathep, Piriya; Van Orden, Steve L.; Ogorzalek Loo, Rachel R.; Loo, Joseph A.

    2014-12-01

    "Native" mass spectrometry (MS) has been proven to be increasingly useful for structural biology studies of macromolecular assemblies. Using horse liver alcohol dehydrogenase (hADH) and yeast alcohol dehydrogenase (yADH) as examples, we demonstrate that rich information can be obtained in a single native top-down MS experiment using Fourier transform ion cyclotron mass spectrometry (FTICR MS). Beyond measuring the molecular weights of the protein complexes, isotopic mass resolution was achieved for yeast ADH tetramer (147 kDa) with an average resolving power of 412,700 at m/z 5466 in absorption mode, and the mass reflects that each subunit binds to two zinc atoms. The N-terminal 89 amino acid residues were sequenced in a top-down electron capture dissociation (ECD) experiment, along with the identifications of the zinc binding site at Cys46 and a point mutation (V58T). With the combination of various activation/dissociation techniques, including ECD, in-source dissociation (ISD), collisionally activated dissociation (CAD), and infrared multiphoton dissociation (IRMPD), 40% of the yADH sequence was derived directly from the native tetramer complex. For hADH, native top-down ECD-MS shows that both E and S subunits are present in the hADH sample, with a relative ratio of 4:1. Native top-down ISD of the hADH dimer shows that each subunit (E and S chains) binds not only to two zinc atoms, but also the NAD/NADH ligand, with a higher NAD/NADH binding preference for the S chain relative to the E chain. In total, 32% sequence coverage was achieved for both E and S chains.

  17. Water-protein interaction in native and partially unfolded equine cytochrome c

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Banci, Lucia

    1998-12-01

    The problem of the interaction of water solvent with proteins has been addressed by investigating the water 1H nuclear magnetic relaxation dispersion (NMRD) profiles of cytochrome c solutions. It is shown that the 1H NMRD profiles are accounted for by 1, a sizeable contribution from exchangeable protein protons (mostly from lysine side chains) and 2, a modest contribution from long-lived water. It is also shown that the number of exchangeable protons is sizeably increased in the oxidized but not in the reduced protein in the presence of the unfolding agent guanidinium chloride at a 3M concentration. This additional contribution arises mostly from backbone protons, as evidenced by high resolution NMR data which provide significant and independent data on the structure and the dynamic behaviour of the partly unfolded oxidized protein. Higher accessibility to short lived water molecules is proposed also. For the analysis of the 1H NMRD data a complete relaxation matrix approach is presented that is analogous, but not identical, to one recently described. This approach permits the simultaneous incorporation of exchangeable protein protons and an unlimited number of water molecules in pre-defined protein binding sites.

  18. Protein structure prediction with local adjust tabu search algorithm

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Protein folding structure prediction is one of the most challenging problems in the bioinformatics domain. Because of the complexity of the realistic protein structure, the simplified structure model and the computational method should be adopted in the research. The AB off-lattice model is one of the simplification models, which only considers two classes of amino acids, hydrophobic (A) residues and hydrophilic (B) residues. Results The main work of this paper is to discuss how to optimize the lowest energy configurations in 2D off-lattice model and 3D off-lattice model by using Fibonacci sequences and real protein sequences. In order to avoid falling into local minimum and faster convergence to the global minimum, we introduce a novel method (SATS) to the protein structure problem, which combines simulated annealing algorithm and tabu search algorithm. Various strategies, such as the new encoding strategy, the adaptive neighborhood generation strategy and the local adjustment strategy, are adopted successfully for high-speed searching the optimal conformation corresponds to the lowest energy of the protein sequences. Experimental results show that some of the results obtained by the improved SATS are better than those reported in previous literatures, and we can sure that the lowest energy folding state for short Fibonacci sequences have been found. Conclusions Although the off-lattice models is not very realistic, they can reflect some important characteristics of the realistic protein. It can be found that 3D off-lattice model is more like native folding structure of the realistic protein than 2D off-lattice model. In addition, compared with some previous researches, the proposed hybrid algorithm can more effectively and more quickly search the spatial folding structure of a protein chain. PMID:25474708

  19. Protein structure, stability and folding in the cell -- in silico biophysical approaches

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cheung, Margaret

    2010-03-01

    How the crowded environment inside a cell affects the structural conformation of a protein with aspherical shape is a vital question because the geometry of proteins and protein-protein complexes are far from globules in vivo. Here we address this question by combining computational and experimental studies of a spherical protein (i.e. apoflavodoxin), a football-shaped protein (i.e., Borrelia burgdorferi VlsE) and a dumbbell-shaped protein (i.e. calmodulin) under crowded, cell-like conditions. The results show that macromolecular crowding affects protein folding dynamics as well as an overall protein shape associated with changes in secondary structures. Our work demonstrates the malleability of ``native'' proteins and implies that crowding-induced shape changes may be important for protein function and malfunction in vivo.

  20. The Structure of Clinical Consultation: A Case of Non-Native Speakers of English as Participants

    PubMed Central

    Bagheri, H.; Ibrahim, N. A.; Habil, H.

    2015-01-01

    Background: In many parts of the world, patients may find it difficult to visit doctors who share the same language and culture due to the intermingling of people and international recruitment of doctors among many other reasons. In these multilingual multicultural settings (MMSs), doctor-patient interactions face new communication challenges. This study aims to identify the structure of clinical consultation and its phases in an MMS where both doctors and patients are non-native speakers (NNSs) of English. Method: This study takes on a discourse analytic approach to examine the structure of clinical consultation as an activity type. 25 clinical consultation sessions between non-native speakers of English in a public healthcare centre in Malaysia were audio-recorded. Findings and Discussion: The results show that there are some deviations from the mainstream structure of clinical consultations although, in general, the pattern is compatible with previous studies. Deviations are particularly marked in the opening and closing phases of consultation. Conclusion: In almost all interactions, there is a straightforward manner of beginning medical consultations. The absence of greetings may have naturally reduced the length of talk. Hence, by directly entering medical talks, the doctors voice their concern on the curing aspects of the consultation rather than its caring facets. The preference of curing priority to caring is more goal-oriented and in alignment with the consultation as an activity type. PMID:25560336

  1. Herbarium specimens reveal a historical shift in phylogeographic structure of common ragweed during native range disturbance.

    PubMed

    Martin, Michael D; Zimmer, Elizabeth A; Olsen, Morten T; Foote, Andrew D; Gilbert, M Thomas P; Brush, Grace S

    2014-04-01

    Invasive plants provide ample opportunity to study evolutionary shifts that occur after introduction to novel environments. However, although genetic characters pre-dating introduction can be important determinants of later success, large-scale investigations of historical genetic structure have not been feasible. Common ragweed (Ambrosia artemisiifolia L.) is an invasive weed native to North America that is known for its allergenic pollen. Palynological records from sediment cores indicate that this species was uncommon before European colonization of North America, and ragweed populations expanded rapidly as settlers deforested the landscape on a massive scale, later becoming an aggressive invasive with populations established globally. Towards a direct comparison of genetic structure now and during intense anthropogenic disturbance of the late 19th century, we sampled 45 natural populations of common ragweed across its native range as well as historical herbarium specimens collected up to 140 years ago. Bayesian clustering analyses of 453 modern and 473 historical samples genotyped at three chloroplast spacer regions and six nuclear microsatellite loci reveal that historical ragweed's spatial genetic structure mirrors both the palaeo-record of Ambrosia pollen deposition and the historical pattern of agricultural density across the landscape. Furthermore, for unknown reasons, this spatial genetic pattern has changed substantially in the intervening years. Following on previous work relating morphology and genetic expression between plants collected from eastern North America and Western Europe, we speculate that the cluster associated with humans' rapid transformation of the landscape is a likely source of these aggressive invasive populations.

  2. Constrained Peptides as Miniature Protein Structures

    PubMed Central

    Yin, Hang

    2012-01-01

    This paper discusses the recent developments of protein engineering using both covalent and noncovalent bonds to constrain peptides, forcing them into designed protein secondary structures. These constrained peptides subsequently can be used as peptidomimetics for biological functions such as regulations of protein-protein interactions. PMID:25969758

  3. Dynamic insight into protein structure utilizing red edge excitation shift.

    PubMed

    Chattopadhyay, Amitabha; Haldar, Sourav

    2014-01-21

    Proteins are considered the workhorses in the cellular machinery. They are often organized in a highly ordered conformation in the crowded cellular environment. These conformations display characteristic dynamics over a range of time scales. An emerging consensus is that protein function is critically dependent on its dynamics. The subtle interplay between structure and dynamics is a hallmark of protein organization and is essential for its function. Depending on the environmental context, proteins can adopt a range of conformations such as native, molten globule, unfolded (denatured), and misfolded states. Although protein crystallography is a well established technique, it is not always possible to characterize various protein conformations by X-ray crystallography due to transient nature of these states. Even in cases where structural characterization is possible, the information obtained lacks dynamic component, which is needed to understand protein function. In this overall scenario, approaches that reveal information on protein dynamics are much appreciated. Dynamics of confined water has interesting implications in protein folding. Interfacial hydration combines the motion of water molecules with the slow moving protein molecules. The red edge excitation shift (REES) approach becomes relevant in this context. REES is defined as the shift in the wavelength of maximum fluorescence emission toward higher wavelengths, caused by a shift in the excitation wavelength toward the red edge of absorption spectrum. REES arises due to slow rates (relative to fluorescence lifetime) of solvent relaxation (reorientation) around an excited state fluorophore in organized assemblies such as proteins. Consequently, REES depends on the environment-induced motional restriction imposed on the solvent molecules in the immediate vicinity of the fluorophore. In the case of a protein, the confined water in the protein creates a dipolar field that acts as the solvent for a fluorophore

  4. Crystal structure of the Aequorea victoria green fluorescent protein.

    PubMed

    Ormö, M; Cubitt, A B; Kallio, K; Gross, L A; Tsien, R Y; Remington, S J

    1996-09-06

    The green fluorescent protein (GFP) from the Pacific Northwest jellyfish Aequorea victoria has generated intense interest as a marker for gene expression and localization of gene products. The chromophore, resulting from the spontaneous cyclization and oxidation of the sequence -Ser65 (or Thr65)-Tyr66-Gly67-, requires the native protein fold for both formation and fluorescence emission. The structure of Thr65 GFP has been determined at 1.9 angstrom resolution. The protein fold consists of an 11-stranded beta barrel with a coaxial helix, with the chromophore forming from the central helix. Directed mutagenesis of one residue adjacent to the chromophore, Thr203, to Tyr or His results in significantly red-shifted excitation and emission maxima.

  5. Crystal Structure of the Aequorea victoria Green Fluorescent Protein

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ormo, Mats; Cubitt, Andrew B.; Kallio, Karen; Gross, Larry A.; Tsien, Roger Y.; Remington, S. James

    1996-09-01

    The green fluorescent protein (GFP) from the Pacific Northwest jellyfish Aequorea victoria has generated intense interest as a marker for gene expression and localization of gene products. The chromophore, resulting from the spontaneous cyclization and oxidation of the sequence -Ser65 (or Thr65)-Tyr66-Gly67-, requires the native protein fold for both formation and fluorescence emission. The structure of Thr65 GFP has been determined at 1.9 angstrom resolution. The protein fold consists of an 11-stranded β barrel with a coaxial helix, with the chromophore forming from the central helix. Directed mutagenesis of one residue adjacent to the chromophore, Thr203, to Tyr or His results in significantly red-shifted excitation and emission maxima.

  6. Tertiary alphabet for the observable protein structural universe.

    PubMed

    Mackenzie, Craig O; Zhou, Jianfu; Grigoryan, Gevorg

    2016-11-22

    Here, we systematically decompose the known protein structural universe into its basic elements, which we dub tertiary structural motifs (TERMs). A TERM is a compact backbone fragment that captures the secondary, tertiary, and quaternary environments around a given residue, comprising one or more disjoint segments (three on average). We seek the set of universal TERMs that capture all structure in the Protein Data Bank (PDB), finding remarkable degeneracy. Only ∼600 TERMs are sufficient to describe 50% of the PDB at sub-Angstrom resolution. However, more rare geometries also exist, and the overall structural coverage grows logarithmically with the number of TERMs. We go on to show that universal TERMs provide an effective mapping between sequence and structure. We demonstrate that TERM-based statistics alone are sufficient to recapitulate close-to-native sequences given either NMR or X-ray backbones. Furthermore, sequence variability predicted from TERM data agrees closely with evolutionary variation. Finally, locations of TERMs in protein chains can be predicted from sequence alone based on sequence signatures emergent from TERM instances in the PDB. For multisegment motifs, this method identifies spatially adjacent fragments that are not contiguous in sequence-a major bottleneck in structure prediction. Although all TERMs recur in diverse proteins, some appear specialized for certain functions, such as interface formation, metal coordination, or even water binding. Structural biology has benefited greatly from previously observed degeneracies in structure. The decomposition of the known structural universe into a finite set of compact TERMs offers exciting opportunities toward better understanding, design, and prediction of protein structure.

  7. Practical lessons from protein structure prediction

    PubMed Central

    Ginalski, Krzysztof; Grishin, Nick V.; Godzik, Adam; Rychlewski, Leszek

    2005-01-01

    Despite recent efforts to develop automated protein structure determination protocols, structural genomics projects are slow in generating fold assignments for complete proteomes, and spatial structures remain unknown for many protein families. Alternative cheap and fast methods to assign folds using prediction algorithms continue to provide valuable structural information for many proteins. The development of high-quality prediction methods has been boosted in the last years by objective community-wide assessment experiments. This paper gives an overview of the currently available practical approaches to protein structure prediction capable of generating accurate fold assignment. Recent advances in assessment of the prediction quality are also discussed. PMID:15805122

  8. Autosomal STR analyses in native Amazonian tribes suggest a population structure driven by isolation by distance.

    PubMed

    Dos Santos, Sidney E B; Ribeiro-Rodrigues, Elzemar M; Ribeiro-Dos-Santos, Andrea K C; Hutz, Mara H; Tovo-Rodrigues, Luciana; Salzano, Francisco M; Callegari-Jacques, Sidia M

    2009-02-01

    Eleven short tandem repeat loci (CSF1PO, D3S1358, D5S818, D7S820, D8S1179, D13S317, D16S539, D18S51, D21S11, TH01, and TPOX) were investigated in 232 individuals from 6 Amazonian native tribes (Tiriyó, Waiãpi, Zoé, Urubu-Kaapor, Awa-Guajá, and Parakanã). We added the new data to a database that included five previously typed native populations from the same area (Wai Wai, Gavião, Zoró, Suruí, and Xavante). The results presented here concern this new data set, which accounts for 526 individuals in total. We tested whether major geographic or linguistic barriers to gene flow exist among such human groups and tried to find a possible anthropological or ethnological explanation for such patterns. We measured the average heterozygosity (H) and the number of alleles (N(A) ) and found that both are lower than values observed in populations of different ethnic backgrounds, such as European or African descendants. Despite such a result, we found high between-population variation; lower H and/or N(A) values were obtained from four isolated tribes that came into contact with external nonnative populations in recent times (1921-1989). By applying analysis of molecular variance, generalized hierarchical modeling, and the Structure Bayesian analysis, we were not able to detect any significant geographic or linguistic barrier to gene flow. Geographic autocorrelation analysis suggests that the genetic structure of native Amazonian tribes is better explained by isolation by distance because the level of genetic similarity decreases according to linear geographic distance, reaching null or negative values at a scale of 300 km.

  9. A Reassessment of the Impact of European Contact on the Structure of Native American Genetic Diversity

    PubMed Central

    Hunley, Keith; Gwin, Kiela; Liberman, Brendan

    2016-01-01

    Our current understanding of pre-Columbian history in the Americas rests in part on several trends identified in recent genetic studies. The goal of this study is to reexamine these trends in light of the impact of post-Columbian admixture and the methods used to study admixture. The previously-published data consist of 645 autosomal microsatellite genotypes from 1046 individuals in 63 populations. We used STRUCTURE to estimate ancestry proportions and tested the sensitivity of these estimates to the choice of the number of clusters, K. We used partial correlation analyses to examine the relationship between gene diversity and geographic distance from Beringia, controlling for non-Native American ancestry (from Africa, Europe and East Asia), and taking into account alternative paths of migration. Principal component analysis and multidimensional scaling were used to investigate the relationships between Andean and non-Andean populations and to explore gene-language correspondence. We found that 1) European and East Asian ancestry estimates decline as K increases, especially in Native Canadian populations, 2) a north-south decline in gene diversity is driven by low diversity in Amazonian and Paraguayan populations, not serial founder effects from Beringia, 3) controlling for non-Native American ancestry, populations in the Andes and Mesoamerica have higher gene diversity than populations in other regions, and 4) patterns of genetic and linguistic diversity are poorly correlated. We conclude that patterns of diversity previously attributed to pre-Columbian processes may in part reflect post-Columbian admixture and the choice of K in STRUCTURE analyses. Accounting for admixture, the pattern of diversity is inconsistent with a north-south founder effect process, though the genetic similarities between Mesoamerican and Andean populations are consistent with rapid dispersal along the western coast of the Americas. Further, even setting aside the disruptive effects of

  10. Imprint of evolution on protein structures

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tiana, Guido; Shakhnovich, Boris E.; Dokholyan, Nikolay V.; Shakhnovich, Eugene I.

    2004-03-01

    We attempt to understand the evolutionary origin of protein folds by simulating their divergent evolution with a three-dimensional lattice model. Starting from an initial seed lattice structure, evolution of model proteins progresses by sequence duplication and subsequent point mutations. A new gene's ability to fold into a stable and unique structure is tested each time through direct kinetic folding simulations. Where possible, the algorithm accepts the new sequence and structure and thus a "new protein structure" is born. During the course of each run, this model evolutionary algorithm provides several thousand new proteins with diverse structures. Analysis of evolved structures shows that later evolved structures are more designable than seed structures as judged by recently developed structural determinant of protein designability, as well as direct estimate of designability for selected structures by thermodynamic sampling of their sequence space. We test the significance of this trend predicted on lattice models on real proteins and show that protein domains that are found in eukaryotic organisms only feature statistically significant higher designability than their prokaryotic counterparts. These results present a fundamental view on protein evolution highlighting the relative roles of structural selection and evolutionary dynamics on genesis of modern proteins.

  11. From coiled coils to small globular proteins: design of a native-like three-helix bundle.

    PubMed Central

    Bryson, J. W.; Desjarlais, J. R.; Handel, T. M.; DeGrado, W. F.

    1998-01-01

    A monomolecular native-like three-helix bundle has been designed in an iterative process, beginning with a peptide that noncooperatively assembled into an antiparallel three-helix bundle. Three versions of the protein were designed in which specific interactions were incrementally added. The hydrodynamic and spectroscopic properties of the proteins were examined by size exclusion chromatography, sedimentation equilibrium, fluorescence spectroscopy, and NMR. The thermodynamics of folding were evaluated by monitoring the thermal and guanidine-induced unfolding transitions using far UV circular dichroism spectroscopy. The attainment of a unique, native-like state was achieved through the introduction of: (1) helix capping interactions; (2) electrostatic interactions between partially exposed charged residues; (3) a diverse collection of apolar side chains within the hydrophobic core. PMID:9655345

  12. 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.

  13. 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.

  14. Lipid, Detergent, and Coomassie Blue G-250 Affect the Migration of Small Membrane Proteins in Blue Native Gels

    PubMed Central

    Crichton, Paul G.; Harding, Marilyn; Ruprecht, Jonathan J.; Lee, Yang; Kunji, Edmund R. S.

    2013-01-01

    Blue native gel electrophoresis is a popular method for the determination of the oligomeric state of membrane proteins. Studies using this technique have reported that mitochondrial carriers are dimeric (composed of two ∼32-kDa monomers) and, in some cases, can form physiologically relevant associations with other proteins. Here, we have scrutinized the behavior of the yeast mitochondrial ADP/ATP carrier AAC3 in blue native gels. We find that the apparent mass of AAC3 varies in a detergent- and lipid-dependent manner (from ∼60 to ∼130 kDa) that is not related to changes in the oligomeric state of the protein, but reflects differences in the associated detergent-lipid micelle and Coomassie Blue G-250 used in this technique. Higher oligomeric state species are only observed under less favorable solubilization conditions, consistent with aggregation of the protein. Calibration with an artificial covalent AAC3 dimer indicates that the mass observed for solubilized AAC3 and other mitochondrial carriers corresponds to a monomer. Size exclusion chromatography of purified AAC3 in dodecyl maltoside under blue native gel-like conditions shows that the mass of the monomer is ∼120 kDa, but appears smaller on gels (∼60 kDa) due to the unusually high amount of bound negatively charged dye, which increases the electrophoretic mobility of the protein-detergent-dye micelle complex. Our results show that bound lipid, detergent, and Coomassie stain alter the behavior of mitochondrial carriers on gels, which is likely to be true for other small membrane proteins where the associated lipid-detergent micelle is large when compared with the mass of the protein. PMID:23744064

  15. Automated High Throughput Protein Crystallization Screening at Nanoliter Scale and Protein Structural Study on Lactate Dehydrogenase

    SciTech Connect

    Li, Fenglei

    2006-08-09

    The purposes of our research were: (1) To develop an economical, easy to use, automated, high throughput system for large scale protein crystallization screening. (2) To develop a new protein crystallization method with high screening efficiency, low protein consumption and complete compatibility with high throughput screening system. (3) To determine the structure of lactate dehydrogenase complexed with NADH by x-ray protein crystallography to study its inherent structural properties. Firstly, we demonstrated large scale protein crystallization screening can be performed in a high throughput manner with low cost, easy operation. The overall system integrates liquid dispensing, crystallization and detection and serves as a whole solution to protein crystallization screening. The system can dispense protein and multiple different precipitants in nanoliter scale and in parallel. A new detection scheme, native fluorescence, has been developed in this system to form a two-detector system with a visible light detector for detecting protein crystallization screening results. This detection scheme has capability of eliminating common false positives by distinguishing protein crystals from inorganic crystals in a high throughput and non-destructive manner. The entire system from liquid dispensing, crystallization to crystal detection is essentially parallel, high throughput and compatible with automation. The system was successfully demonstrated by lysozyme crystallization screening. Secondly, we developed a new crystallization method with high screening efficiency, low protein consumption and compatibility with automation and high throughput. In this crystallization method, a gas permeable membrane is employed to achieve the gentle evaporation required by protein crystallization. Protein consumption is significantly reduced to nanoliter scale for each condition and thus permits exploring more conditions in a phase diagram for given amount of protein. In addition

  16. Free-Energy Landscape of Protein-Ligand Interactions Coupled with Protein Structural Changes.

    PubMed

    Moritsugu, Kei; Terada, Tohru; Kidera, Akinori

    2017-02-02

    Protein-ligand interactions are frequently coupled with protein structural changes. Focusing on the coupling, we present the free-energy surface (FES) of the ligand-binding process for glutamine-binding protein (GlnBP) and its ligand, glutamine, in which glutamine binding accompanies large-scale domain closure. All-atom simulations were performed in explicit solvents by multiscale enhanced sampling (MSES), which adopts a multicopy and multiscale scheme to achieve enhanced sampling of systems with a large number of degrees of freedom. The structural ensemble derived from the MSES simulation yielded the FES of the coupling, described in terms of both the ligand's and protein's degrees of freedom at atomic resolution, and revealed the tight coupling between the two degrees of freedom. The derived FES led to the determination of definite structural states, which suggested the dominant pathways of glutamine binding to GlnBP: first, glutamine migrates via diffusion to form a dominant encounter complex with Arg75 on the large domain of GlnBP, through strong polar interactions. Subsequently, the closing motion of GlnBP occurs to form ligand interactions with the small domain, finally completing the native-specific complex structure. The formation of hydrogen bonds between glutamine and the small domain is considered to be a rate-limiting step, inducing desolvation of the protein-ligand interface to form the specific native complex. The key interactions to attain high specificity for glutamine, the "door keeper" existing between the two domains (Asp10-Lys115) and the "hydrophobic sandwich" formed between the ligand glutamine and Phe13/Phe50, have been successfully mapped on the pathway derived from the FES.

  17. Predictions of Native American Population Structure Using Linguistic Covariates in a Hidden Regression Framework

    PubMed Central

    Jay, Flora; François, Olivier; Blum, Michael G. B.

    2011-01-01

    Background The mainland of the Americas is home to a remarkable diversity of languages, and the relationships between genes and languages have attracted considerable attention in the past. Here we investigate to which extent geography and languages can predict the genetic structure of Native American populations. Methodology/Principal Findings Our approach is based on a Bayesian latent cluster regression model in which cluster membership is explained by geographic and linguistic covariates. After correcting for geographic effects, we find that the inclusion of linguistic information improves the prediction of individual membership to genetic clusters. We further compare the predictive power of Greenberg's and The Ethnologue classifications of Amerindian languages. We report that The Ethnologue classification provides a better genetic proxy than Greenberg's classification at the stock and at the group levels. Although high predictive values can be achieved from The Ethnologue classification, we nevertheless emphasize that Choco, Chibchan and Tupi linguistic families do not exhibit a univocal correspondence with genetic clusters. Conclusions/Significance The Bayesian latent class regression model described here is efficient at predicting population genetic structure using geographic and linguistic information in Native American populations. PMID:21305006

  18. Impact of Non-Native Terrestrial Mammals on the Structure of the Terrestrial Mammal Food Web of Newfoundland, Canada

    PubMed Central

    Strong, Justin S.; Leroux, Shawn J.

    2014-01-01

    The island of Newfoundland is unique because it has as many non-native terrestrial mammals as native ones. The impacts of non-native species on native flora and fauna can be profound and invasive species have been identified as one of the primary drivers of species extinction. Few studies, however, have investigated the effects of a non-native species assemblage on community and ecosystem properties. We reviewed the literature to build the first terrestrial mammal food web for the island of Newfoundland and then used network analyses to investigate how the timing of introductions and trophic position of non-native species has affected the structure of the terrestrial mammal food web in Newfoundland. The first non-native mammals (house mouse and brown rat) became established in Newfoundland with human settlement in the late 15th and early 16th centuries. Coyotes and southern red-backed voles are the most recent mammals to establish themselves on the island in 1985 and 1998, respectively. The fraction of intermediate species increased with the addition of non-native mammals over time whereas the fraction of basal and top species declined over time. This increase in intermediate species mediated by non-native species arrivals led to an overall increase in the terrestrial mammal food web connectance and generality (i.e. mean number of prey per predator). This diverse prey base and sources of carrion may have facilitated the natural establishment of coyotes on the island. Also, there is some evidence that the introduction of non-native prey species such as the southern red-backed vole has contributed to the recovery of the threatened American marten. Long-term monitoring of the food web is required to understand and predict the impacts of the diverse novel interactions that are developing in the terrestrial mammal food web of Newfoundland. PMID:25170923

  19. Impact of non-native terrestrial mammals on the structure of the terrestrial mammal food web of Newfoundland, Canada.

    PubMed

    Strong, Justin S; Leroux, Shawn J

    2014-01-01

    The island of Newfoundland is unique because it has as many non-native terrestrial mammals as native ones. The impacts of non-native species on native flora and fauna can be profound and invasive species have been identified as one of the primary drivers of species extinction. Few studies, however, have investigated the effects of a non-native species assemblage on community and ecosystem properties. We reviewed the literature to build the first terrestrial mammal food web for the island of Newfoundland and then used network analyses to investigate how the timing of introductions and trophic position of non-native species has affected the structure of the terrestrial mammal food web in Newfoundland. The first non-native mammals (house mouse and brown rat) became established in Newfoundland with human settlement in the late 15th and early 16th centuries. Coyotes and southern red-backed voles are the most recent mammals to establish themselves on the island in 1985 and 1998, respectively. The fraction of intermediate species increased with the addition of non-native mammals over time whereas the fraction of basal and top species declined over time. This increase in intermediate species mediated by non-native species arrivals led to an overall increase in the terrestrial mammal food web connectance and generality (i.e. mean number of prey per predator). This diverse prey base and sources of carrion may have facilitated the natural establishment of coyotes on the island. Also, there is some evidence that the introduction of non-native prey species such as the southern red-backed vole has contributed to the recovery of the threatened American marten. Long-term monitoring of the food web is required to understand and predict the impacts of the diverse novel interactions that are developing in the terrestrial mammal food web of Newfoundland.

  20. Analyzing native membrane protein assembly in nanodiscs by combined non-covalent mass spectrometry and synthetic biology

    PubMed Central

    Henrich, Erik; Peetz, Oliver; Hein, Christopher; Laguerre, Aisha; Hoffmann, Beate; Hoffmann, Jan; Dötsch, Volker; Bernhard, Frank; Morgner, Nina

    2017-01-01

    Membrane proteins frequently assemble into higher order homo- or hetero-oligomers within their natural lipid environment. This complex formation can modulate their folding, activity as well as substrate selectivity. Non-disruptive methods avoiding critical steps, such as membrane disintegration, transfer into artificial environments or chemical modifications are therefore essential to analyze molecular mechanisms of native membrane protein assemblies. The combination of cell-free synthetic biology, nanodisc-technology and non-covalent mass spectrometry provides excellent synergies for the analysis of membrane protein oligomerization within defined membranes. We exemplify our strategy by oligomeric state characterization of various membrane proteins including ion channels, transporters and membrane-integrated enzymes assembling up to hexameric complexes. We further indicate a lipid-dependent dimer formation of MraY translocase correlating with the enzymatic activity. The detergent-free synthesis of membrane protein/nanodisc samples and the analysis by LILBID mass spectrometry provide a versatile platform for the analysis of membrane proteins in a native environment. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.20954.001 PMID:28067619

  1. Detection of serum proteins by native polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis using Blue Sepharose CL-6B-containing stacking gels.

    PubMed

    Muratsubaki, Haruhiro; Satake, Kaoru; Yamamoto, Yasuhisa; Enomoto, Keiichiro

    2002-08-15

    Analysis of serum proteins by native polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis is difficult because albumin is abundant in serum and interferes with the resolution of other proteins, especially alpha-antitrypsin which has mobility that is very similar to that of albumin. We present here a method in which serum proteins are separated by polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis using stacking gels containing Blue Sepharose CL-6B, which has a high affinity for albumin, lipoproteins, kinases, and pyridine-nucleotide-dependent oxidoreductases. During electrophoresis, proteins that bind to Blue Sepharose CL-6B stay in the stacking gel and do not migrate into the separating gel. As a consequence, certain proteins, including alpha(1)-antitrypsin, can be detected as clear bands. This method overcomes the requirement for fractionation of serum samples prior to electrophoresis to remove albumin and allows the simultaneous analysis of many samples.

  2. Protein Structure Prediction with Visuospatial Analogy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Davies, Jim; Glasgow, Janice; Kuo, Tony

    We show that visuospatial representations and reasoning techniques can be used as a similarity metric for analogical protein structure prediction. Our system retrieves pairs of α-helices based on contact map similarity, then transfers and adapts the structure information to an unknown helix pair, showing that similar protein contact maps predict similar 3D protein structure. The success of this method provides support for the notion that changing representations can enable similarity metrics in analogy.

  3. Chelating Surfaces for Native State Proteins Patterning: The Human Serum Albumin Case.

    PubMed

    Giamblanco, Nicoletta; Tuccitto, Nunzio; Zappalà, Gabriella; Sfuncia, Gianfranco; Licciardello, Antonino; Marletta, Giovanni

    2015-10-21

    The paper reports a new "soft" surface functionalization strategy, based on a highly selective ion metal chelation process. The proposed stepwise methodology implies at first the construction of a monolayer of terpyridine-based thiol (Tpy), whose highly packed structuring has been followed in situ by using quartz crystal microbalance (QCM-D) measurements, showing that the monolayers consist of about 2.7 × 10(14) Tpy/cm(2). Then, the tridentate sites of the each Tpy moiety are employed to partially chelate divalent metal ions, providing an effective platform to anchoring proteins by completing the metal ion coordination with an available site on the protein of interest. We report the case study of the application of the process to the HSA immobilization onto various surfaces, including Tpy-Fe(II) and Tpy-Cu(II) complexes, as well as hydrophilic bare gold substrates and hydrophobic self-assembled Tpy-based monolayers. It is shown that the chelation interaction between Tpy-Cu(II) complexes and HSA produces the highest and most robust HSA immobilization, with an adsorbed mass at the steady state of ∼800 ng/cm(2), with respect to an average adsorption of ∼350 ng/cm(2) for the other surfaces. Furthermore, Cu(II)-chelated surfaces seem to promote a sort of protein "soft" landing, preventing the ubiquitous surface-induced major unfolding and transmitting an orientation information to the protein, owing to the highly specific symmetry coordination of the Tpy-Cu(II)-protein complex. Indeed, the interaction with a specific monoclonal antiboby (anti-HSA) indicated the lack of a significant protein denaturation, while a massive reorientation/denaturation process was found for all the remaining surfaces, including the Tpy-Fe(II) complex. Finally, the metal-ion-dependent HSA immobilization selectivity has been exploited to obtain micropatterned surfaces, based on the strikingly different strength of interaction and stability observed for Fe(II) and Cu(II) complexes.

  4. Molten globule structures in milk proteins: implications for potential new structure-function relationships.

    PubMed

    Farrell, H M; Qi, P X; Brown, E M; Cooke, P H; Tunick, M H; Wickham, E D; Unruh, J J

    2002-03-01

    Recent advances in the field of protein chemistry have significantly enhanced our understanding of the possible intermediates that may occur during protein folding and unfolding. In particular, studies on alpha-lactalbumin have led to the theory that the molten globule state may be a possible intermediate in the folding of many proteins. The molten globule state is characterized by a somewhat compact structure, a higher degree of hydration and side chain flexibility, a significant amount of native secondary structure but little tertiary folds, and the ability to react with chaperones. Purified alpha(s1)- and kappa-caseins share many of these same properties; these caseins may thus occur naturally in a molten globule-like state with defined, persistent structures. The caseins appear to have defined secondary structures and to proceed to quaternary structures without tertiary folds. This process may be explained, in part, by comparison with the architectural concepts of tensegrity. By taking advantage of this "new view" of protein folding, and applying these concepts to dairy proteins, it may be possible to generate new and useful forms of proteins for the food ingredient market.

  5. Function and structure of inherently disordered proteins.

    PubMed

    Dunker, A Keith; Silman, Israel; Uversky, Vladimir N; Sussman, Joel L

    2008-12-01

    The application of bioinformatics methodologies to proteins inherently lacking 3D structure has brought increased attention to these macromolecules. Here topics concerning these proteins are discussed, including their prediction from amino acid sequence, their enrichment in eukaryotes compared to prokaryotes, their more rapid evolution compared to structured proteins, their organization into specific groups, their structural preferences, their half-lives in cells, their contributions to signaling diversity (via high contents of multiple-partner binding sites, post-translational modifications, and alternative splicing), their distinct functional repertoire compared to that of structured proteins, and their involvement in diseases.

  6. Are soil mite assemblages structured by the identity of native and invasive alien grasses?

    PubMed

    St John, Mark G; Wall, Diana H; Hunt, H William

    2006-05-01

    Associations between plants and animals in aboveground communities are often predictable and specific. This has been exploited for the purposes of estimating the diversity of animal species based on the diversity of plant species. The introduction of invasive alien plants into an ecosystem can result in dramatic changes in both the native plant and animal assemblages. Few data exist at the species level to determine whether belowground animal assemblages share the same degree of association to plants. The hypotheses that soil mites (Acari) form assemblages specifically associated with different native grass species in an unmanipulated natural ecosystem and that invasive alien grasses will impact soil mite assemblage composition in this setting were tested. Soil mites sampled beneath five native and two invasive alien species of grasses at the Konza Prairie Biological Station, Kansas, USA, were similarly abundant, species rich, diverse, and taxonomically distinct. No mite species had affinities for a specific grass species. There was no evidence from analysis of similarity, canonical correspondence analysis, or a nonparametric assemblage analysis that the assemblage composition of soil mites was specific to grass species. Results suggest that soil mite assemblages were more related to characteristics of the plant assemblage as a whole or prevailing soil conditions. The most recent invasive alien grass did not support a successionally younger mite fauna, based on the ratio of mesostigmatid to oribatid mites, and neither of the two invasive grasses influenced mite assemblage structure, possibly because they had not yet substantially altered the soil environment. Our results suggest that extrapolations of soil mite diversity based on assumptions of plant specificity would be invalid.

  7. Structure and intrinsic disorder in protein autoinhibition.

    PubMed

    Trudeau, Travis; Nassar, Roy; Cumberworth, Alexander; Wong, Eric T C; Woollard, Geoffrey; Gsponer, Jörg

    2013-03-05

    Autoinhibition plays a significant role in the regulation of many proteins. By analyzing autoinhibited proteins, we demonstrate that these proteins are enriched in intrinsic disorder because of the properties of their inhibitory modules (IMs). A comparison of autoinhibited proteins with structured and intrinsically disordered IMs revealed that in the latter group (1) multiple phosphorylation sites are highly abundant; (2) splice variants occur in greater number than in their structured cousins; and (3) activation is often associated with changes in secondary structure in the IM. Analyses of families of autoinhibited proteins revealed that the levels of disorder in IMs can vary significantly throughout homologous proteins, whereas residues located at the interfaces between the IMs and inhibited domains are conserved. Our findings suggest that intrinsically disordered IMs provide advantages over structured ones that are likely to be exploited in the fine-tuning of the equilibrium between active and inactive states of autoinhibited proteins.

  8. Structural Studies of Protein-Surfactant Complexes

    SciTech Connect

    Chodankar, S. N.; Aswal, V. K.; Wagh, A. G.

    2008-03-17

    The structure of protein-surfactant complexes of two proteins bovine serum albumin (BSA) and lysozyme in presence of anionic surfactant sodium dodecyl sulfate (SDS) has been studied using small-angle neutron scattering (SANS). It is observed that these two proteins form different complex structures with the surfactant. While BSA protein undergoes unfolding on addition of surfactant, lysozyme does not show any unfolding even up to very high surfactant concentrations. The unfolding of BSA protein is caused by micelle-like aggregation of surfactant molecules in the complex. On the other hand, for lysozyme protein there is only binding of individual surfactant molecules to protein. Lysozyme in presence of higher surfactant concentrations has protein-surfactant complex structure coexisting with pure surfactant micelles.

  9. Contrasting Role of Temperature in Structuring Regional Patterns of Invasive and Native Pestilential Stink Bugs

    PubMed Central

    Venugopal, P. Dilip; Dively, Galen P.; Herbert, Ames; Malone, Sean; Whalen, Joanne; Lamp, William O.

    2016-01-01

    Objectives Assessment and identification of spatial structures in the distribution and abundance of invasive species is important for unraveling the underlying ecological processes. The invasive agricultural insect pest Halyomorpha halys that causes severe economic losses in the United States is currently expanding both within United States and across Europe. We examined the drivers of H. halys invasion by characterizing the distribution and abundance patterns of H. halys and native stink bugs (Chinavia hilaris and Euschistus servus) across eight different spatial scales. We then quantified the interactive and individual influences of temperature, and measures of resource availability and distance from source populations, and their relevant spatial scales. We used Moran’s Eigenvector Maps based on Gabriel graph framework to quantify spatial relationships among the soybean fields in mid-Atlantic Unites States surveyed for stink bugs. Findings Results from the multi-spatial scale, multivariate analyses showed that temperature and its interaction with resource availability and distance from source populations structures the patterns in H. halys at very broad spatial scale. H. halys abundance decreased with increasing average June temperature and distance from source population. H. halys were not recorded at fields with average June temperature higher than 23.5°C. In parts with suitable climate, high H. halys abundance was positively associated with percentage developed open area and percentage deciduous forests at 250m scale. Broad scale patterns in native stink bugs were positively associated with increasing forest cover and, in contrast to the invasive H. halys, increasing mean July temperature. Our results identify the contrasting role of temperature in structuring regional patterns in H. halys and native stink bugs, while demonstrating its interaction with resource availability and distance from source populations for structuring H. halys patterns. Conclusion

  10. NAPS: Network Analysis of Protein Structures

    PubMed Central

    Chakrabarty, Broto; Parekh, Nita

    2016-01-01

    Traditionally, protein structures have been analysed by the secondary structure architecture and fold arrangement. An alternative approach that has shown promise is modelling proteins as a network of non-covalent interactions between amino acid residues. The network representation of proteins provide a systems approach to topological analysis of complex three-dimensional structures irrespective of secondary structure and fold type and provide insights into structure-function relationship. We have developed a web server for network based analysis of protein structures, NAPS, that facilitates quantitative and qualitative (visual) analysis of residue–residue interactions in: single chains, protein complex, modelled protein structures and trajectories (e.g. from molecular dynamics simulations). The user can specify atom type for network construction, distance range (in Å) and minimal amino acid separation along the sequence. NAPS provides users selection of node(s) and its neighbourhood based on centrality measures, physicochemical properties of amino acids or cluster of well-connected residues (k-cliques) for further analysis. Visual analysis of interacting domains and protein chains, and shortest path lengths between pair of residues are additional features that aid in functional analysis. NAPS support various analyses and visualization views for identifying functional residues, provide insight into mechanisms of protein folding, domain-domain and protein–protein interactions for understanding communication within and between proteins. URL:http://bioinf.iiit.ac.in/NAPS/. PMID:27151201

  11. PSAIA – Protein Structure and Interaction Analyzer

    PubMed Central

    Mihel, Josip; Šikić, Mile; Tomić, Sanja; Jeren, Branko; Vlahoviček, Kristian

    2008-01-01

    Background PSAIA (Protein Structure and Interaction Analyzer) was developed to compute geometric parameters for large sets of protein structures in order to predict and investigate protein-protein interaction sites. Results In addition to most relevant established algorithms, PSAIA offers a new method PIADA (Protein Interaction Atom Distance Algorithm) for the determination of residue interaction pairs. We found that PIADA produced more satisfactory results than comparable algorithms implemented in PSAIA. Particular advantages of PSAIA include its capacity to combine different methods to detect the locations and types of interactions between residues and its ability, without any further automation steps, to handle large numbers of protein structures and complexes. Generally, the integration of a variety of methods enables PSAIA to offer easier automation of analysis and greater reliability of results. PSAIA can be used either via a graphical user interface or from the command-line. Results are generated in either tabular or XML format. Conclusion In a straightforward fashion and for large sets of protein structures, PSAIA enables the calculation of protein geometric parameters and the determination of location and type for protein-protein interaction sites. XML formatted output enables easy conversion of results to various formats suitable for statistic analysis. Results from smaller data sets demonstrated the influence of geometry on protein interaction sites. Comprehensive analysis of properties of large data sets lead to new information useful in the prediction of protein-protein interaction sites. PMID:18400099

  12. TOUCHSTONE II: a new approach to ab initio protein structure prediction.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Yang; Kolinski, Andrzej; Skolnick, Jeffrey

    2003-08-01

    We have developed a new combined approach for ab initio protein structure prediction. The protein conformation is described as a lattice chain connecting C(alpha) atoms, with attached C(beta) atoms and side-chain centers of mass. The model force field includes various short-range and long-range knowledge-based potentials derived from a statistical analysis of the regularities of protein structures. The combination of these energy terms is optimized through the maximization of correlation for 30 x 60,000 decoys between the root mean square deviation (RMSD) to native and energies, as well as the energy gap between native and the decoy ensemble. To accelerate the conformational search, a newly developed parallel hyperbolic sampling algorithm with a composite movement set is used in the Monte Carlo simulation processes. We exploit this strategy to successfully fold 41/100 small proteins (36 approximately 120 residues) with predicted structures having a RMSD from native below 6.5 A in the top five cluster centroids. To fold larger-size proteins as well as to improve the folding yield of small proteins, we incorporate into the basic force field side-chain contact predictions from our threading program PROSPECTOR where homologous proteins were excluded from the data base. With these threading-based restraints, the program can fold 83/125 test proteins (36 approximately 174 residues) with structures having a RMSD to native below 6.5 A in the top five cluster centroids. This shows the significant improvement of folding by using predicted tertiary restraints, especially when the accuracy of side-chain contact prediction is >20%. For native fold selection, we introduce quantities dependent on the cluster density and the combination of energy and free energy, which show a higher discriminative power to select the native structure than the previously used cluster energy or cluster size, and which can be used in native structure identification in blind simulations. These

  13. Effect of ionic liquid on the native and denatured state of a protein covalently attached to a probe: Solvation dynamics study

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chowdhury, Rajdeep; Mojumdar, Supratik Sen; Chattoraj, Shyamtanu; Bhattacharyya, Kankan

    2012-08-01

    Effect of a room temperature ionic liquid (RTIL, [pmim][Br]) on the solvation dynamics of a probe covalently attached to a protein (human serum albumin (HSA)) has been studied using femtosecond up-conversion. For this study, a solvation probe, 7-diethylamino-3-(4-maleimidophenyl)-4-methylcoumarin (CPM) has been covalently attached to the lone cysteine group (cys-34) of the protein HSA. Addition of 1.5 M RTIL or 6 M GdnHCl causes a red shift of the emission maxima of CPM bound to HSA by 3 nm and 12 nm, respectively. The average solvation time ⟨τs⟩ decreases from 650 ps (in native HSA) to 260 ps (˜2.5 times) in the presence of 1.5 M RTIL and to 60 ps (˜11 times) in the presence of 6 M GdnHCl. This is ascribed to unfolding of the protein by RTIL or GdnHCl and therefore making the probe CPM more exposed. When 1.5 M RTIL is added to the protein denatured by 6 M GdnHCl in advance, a further ˜5 nm red shift along with further ˜2 fold faster solvent relaxation (⟨τ⟩ ˜30 ps) is observed. Our previous fluorescence correlation spectroscopy study [D. K. Sasmal, T. Mondal, S. Sen Mojumdar, A. Choudhury, R. Banerjee, and K. Bhattacharyya, J. Phys. Chem. B 115, 13075 (2011), 10.1021/jp207829y] suggests that addition of RTIL to the protein denatured by 6 M GdnHCl causes a reduction in hydrodynamic radius (rh). It is demonstrated that in the presence of RTIL and GdnHCl, though the protein is structurally more compact, the local environment of CPM is very different from that in the native state.

  14. Solid state NMR: The essential technology for helical membrane protein structural characterization

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cross, Timothy A.; Ekanayake, Vindana; Paulino, Joana; Wright, Anna

    2014-02-01

    NMR spectroscopy of helical membrane proteins has been very challenging on multiple fronts. The expression and purification of these proteins while maintaining functionality has consumed countless graduate student hours. Sample preparations have depended on whether solution or solid-state NMR spectroscopy was to be performed - neither have been easy. In recent years it has become increasingly apparent that membrane mimic environments influence the structural result. Indeed, in these recent years we have rediscovered that Nobel laureate, Christian Anfinsen, did not say that protein structure was exclusively dictated by the amino acid sequence, but rather by the sequence in a given environment (Anfinsen, 1973) [106]. The environment matters, molecular interactions with the membrane environment are significant and many examples of distorted, non-native membrane protein structures have recently been documented in the literature. However, solid-state NMR structures of helical membrane proteins in proteoliposomes and bilayers are proving to be native structures that permit a high resolution characterization of their functional states. Indeed, solid-state NMR is uniquely able to characterize helical membrane protein structures in lipid environments without detergents. Recent progress in expression, purification, reconstitution, sample preparation and in the solid-state NMR spectroscopy of both oriented samples and magic angle spinning samples has demonstrated that helical membrane protein structures can be achieved in a timely fashion. Indeed, this is a spectacular opportunity for the NMR community to have a major impact on biomedical research through the solid-state NMR spectroscopy of these proteins.

  15. Solid state NMR: The essential technology for helical membrane protein structural characterization.

    PubMed

    Cross, Timothy A; Ekanayake, Vindana; Paulino, Joana; Wright, Anna

    2014-02-01

    NMR spectroscopy of helical membrane proteins has been very challenging on multiple fronts. The expression and purification of these proteins while maintaining functionality has consumed countless graduate student hours. Sample preparations have depended on whether solution or solid-state NMR spectroscopy was to be performed - neither have been easy. In recent years it has become increasingly apparent that membrane mimic environments influence the structural result. Indeed, in these recent years we have rediscovered that Nobel laureate, Christian Anfinsen, did not say that protein structure was exclusively dictated by the amino acid sequence, but rather by the sequence in a given environment (Anfinsen, 1973) [106]. The environment matters, molecular interactions with the membrane environment are significant and many examples of distorted, non-native membrane protein structures have recently been documented in the literature. However, solid-state NMR structures of helical membrane proteins in proteoliposomes and bilayers are proving to be native structures that permit a high resolution characterization of their functional states. Indeed, solid-state NMR is uniquely able to characterize helical membrane protein structures in lipid environments without detergents. Recent progress in expression, purification, reconstitution, sample preparation and in the solid-state NMR spectroscopy of both oriented samples and magic angle spinning samples has demonstrated that helical membrane protein structures can be achieved in a timely fashion. Indeed, this is a spectacular opportunity for the NMR community to have a major impact on biomedical research through the solid-state NMR spectroscopy of these proteins.

  16. DEAD-Box Helicase Proteins Disrupt RNA Tertiary Structure Through Helix Capture

    PubMed Central

    Pan, Cynthia; Potratz, Jeffrey P.; Cannon, Brian; Simpson, Zachary B.; Ziehr, Jessica L.; Tijerina, Pilar; Russell, Rick

    2014-01-01

    DEAD-box helicase proteins accelerate folding and rearrangements of highly structured RNAs and RNA–protein complexes (RNPs) in many essential cellular processes. Although DEAD-box proteins have been shown to use ATP to unwind short RNA helices, it is not known how they disrupt RNA tertiary structure. Here, we use single molecule fluorescence to show that the DEAD-box protein CYT-19 disrupts tertiary structure in a group I intron using a helix capture mechanism. CYT-19 binds to a helix within the structured RNA only after the helix spontaneously loses its tertiary contacts, and then CYT-19 uses ATP to unwind the helix, liberating the product strands. Ded1, a multifunctional yeast DEAD-box protein, gives analogous results with small but reproducible differences that may reflect its in vivo roles. The requirement for spontaneous dynamics likely targets DEAD-box proteins toward less stable RNA structures, which are likely to experience greater dynamic fluctuations, and provides a satisfying explanation for previous correlations between RNA stability and CYT-19 unfolding efficiency. Biologically, the ability to sense RNA stability probably biases DEAD-box proteins to act preferentially on less stable misfolded structures and thereby to promote native folding while minimizing spurious interactions with stable, natively folded RNAs. In addition, this straightforward mechanism for RNA remodeling does not require any specific structural environment of the helicase core and is likely to be relevant for DEAD-box proteins that promote RNA rearrangements of RNP complexes including the spliceosome and ribosome. PMID:25350280

  17. Interplay among tertiary contacts, secondary structure formation and side-chain packing in the protein folding mechanism: all-atom representation study of protein L.

    PubMed

    Clementi, Cecilia; García, Angel E; Onuchic, José N

    2003-02-21

    Experimental and theoretical results suggest that, since proteins are energetically minimally frustrated, the native fold, or topology, plays a primary role in determining the structure of the transition state ensemble and on-pathway intermediate states in protein folding. Although the central role of native state topology in determining the folding mechanism is thought to be a quite general result-at least for small two-state folding proteins-there are remarkable exceptions. Recent experimental findings have shown that topology alone cannot always determine the folding mechanism, and demonstrated that the balance between topology and energetics is very delicate. This balance seems to be particularly critical in proteins with a highly symmetrical native structure, such as proteins L and G, which have similar native structure topology but fold by different mechanisms. Simplified, C(alpha)-atom only protein models have shown not be sufficient to differentiate these mechanisms. An all-atom Gō model provides a valuable intermediate model between structurally simplified protein representations and all-atom protein simulations with explicit/implicit solvent descriptions. We present here a detailed study of an all-atom Gō-like representation of protein L, in close comparison with the experimental results and with the results obtained from a simple C(alpha)-atom representation of the same protein. We also perform simulations for protein G, where we obtain a folding mechanism in which the protein symmetry is broken exactly in the opposite way to protein L as has been observed experimentally. A detailed analysis for protein L also shows that the role of specific residues is correctly and quantitatively reproduced by the all-atom Gō model over almost the entire protein.

  18. Distributions in Protein Conformation Space: Implications for Structure Prediction and Entropy

    PubMed Central

    Sullivan, David C.; Kuntz, Irwin D.

    2004-01-01

    By considering how polymer structures are distributed in conformation space, we show that it is possible to quantify the difficulty of structural prediction and to provide a measure of progress for prediction calculations. The critical issue is the probability that a conformation is found within a specified distance of another conformer. We address this question by constructing a cumulative distribution function (CDF) for the average probability from observations about its limiting behavior at small displacements and numerical simulations of polyalanine chains. We can use the CDF to estimate the likelihood that a structure prediction is better than random chance. For example, the chance of randomly predicting the native backbone structure of a 150-amino-acid protein to low resolution, say within 6 Å, is 10−14. A high-resolution structural prediction, say to 2 Å, is immensely more difficult (10−57). With additional assumptions, the CDF yields the conformational entropy of protein folding from native-state coordinate variance. Or, using values of the conformational entropy change on folding, we can estimate the native state's conformational span. For example, for a 150-mer protein, equilibrium α-carbon displacements in the native ensemble would be 0.3–0.5 Å based on TΔS of 1.42 kcal/(mol residue). PMID:15240450

  19. Protein Structures Revealed at Record Pace

    ScienceCinema

    Greg Hura

    2016-07-12

    The structure of a protein in days -- not months or years -- ushers in a new era in genomics research. Berkeley Lab scientists have developed a high-throughput protein pipeline that could expedite the development of biofuels and elucidate how proteins carry out lifes vital functions.

  20. Protein Structures Revealed at Record Pace

    SciTech Connect

    Greg Hura

    2009-07-09

    The structure of a protein in days -- not months or years -- ushers in a new era in genomics research. Berkeley Lab scientists have developed a high-throughput protein pipeline that could expedite the development of biofuels and elucidate how proteins carry out lifes vital functions.

  1. 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.

  2. About the structural role of disulfide bridges in serum albumins: evidence from protein simulated unfolding.

    PubMed

    Paris, Guillaume; Kraszewski, Sebastian; Ramseyer, Christophe; Enescu, Mironel

    2012-11-01

    The role of the 17 disulfide (S-S) bridges in preserving the native conformation of human serum albumin (HSA) is investigated by performing classical molecular dynamics (MD) simulations on protein structures with intact and, respectively, reduced S-S bridges. The thermal unfolding simulations predict a clear destabilization of the protein secondary structure upon reduction of the S-S bridges as well as a significant distortion of the tertiary structure that is revealed by the changes in the protein native contacts fraction. The effect of the S-S bridges reduction on the protein compactness was tested by calculating Gibbs free energy profiles with respect to the protein gyration radius. The theoretical results obtained using the OPLS-AA and the AMBER ff03 force fields are in agreement with the available experimental data. Beyond the validation of the simulation method, the results here reported provide new insights into the mechanism of the protein reductive/oxidative unfolding/folding processes. It is predicted that in the native conformation of the protein, the thiol (-SH) groups belonging to the same reduced S-S bridge are located in potential wells that maintain them in contact. The -SH pairs can be dispatched by specific conformational transitions of the peptide chain located in the neighborhood of the cysteine residues.

  3. Microbial Community Structure and Function of Soil Following Ecosystem Conversion from Native Forests to Teak Plantation Forests

    PubMed Central

    de Gannes, Vidya; Bekele, Isaac; Dipchansingh, Denny; Wuddivira, Mark N.; De Cairies, Sunshine; Boman, Mattias; Hickey, William J.

    2016-01-01

    Soil microbial communities can form links between forest trees and functioning of forest soils, yet the impacts of converting diverse native forests to monoculture plantations on soil microbial communities are limited. This study tested the hypothesis that conversion from a diverse native to monoculture ecosystem would be paralleled by a reduction in the diversity of the soil microbial communities. Soils from Teak (Tectona grandis) plantations and adjacent native forest were examined at two locations in Trinidad. Microbial community structure was determined via Illumina sequencing of bacterial 16S rRNA genes and fungal internal transcribed spacer (ITS) regions, and by phospholipid fatty acid (PLFA) analysis. Functional characteristics of microbial communities were assessed by extracellular enzyme activity (EEA). Conversion to Teak plantation had no effect on species richness or evenness of bacterial or fungal communities, and no significant effect on EEA. However, multivariate analyses (nested and two-way crossed analysis of similarity) revealed significant effects (p < 0.05) of forest type (Teak vs. native) upon the composition of the microbial communities as reflected in all three assays of community structure. Univariate analysis of variance identified two bacterial phyla that were significantly more abundant in the native forest soils than in Teak soils (Cyanobacteria, p = 0.0180; Nitrospirae, p = 0.0100) and two more abundant in Teak soils than in native forest (candidate phyla TM7, p = 0.0004; WS6, p = 0.044). Abundance of an unidentified class of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) was significantly greater in Teak soils, notable because Teak is colonized by AMF rather than by ectomycorrihzal fungi that are symbionts of the native forest tree species. In conclusion, microbial diversity indices were not affected in the conversion of native forest to teak plantation, but examination of specific bacterial taxa showed that there were significant differences in

  4. Predicting Protein Structure Using Parallel Genetic Algorithms.

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1994-12-01

    By " Predicting rotein Structure D istribticfiar.. ................ Using Parallel Genetic Algorithms ,Avaiu " ’ •"... Dist THESIS I IGeorge H...iiLite-d Approved for public release; distribution unlimited AFIT/ GCS /ENG/94D-03 Predicting Protein Structure Using Parallel Genetic Algorithms ...1-1 1.2 Genetic Algorithms ......... ............................ 1-3 1.3 The Protein Folding Problem

  5. Structure and assembly of scalable porous protein cages

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sasaki, Eita; Böhringer, Daniel; van de Waterbeemd, Michiel; Leibundgut, Marc; Zschoche, Reinhard; Heck, Albert J. R.; Ban, Nenad; Hilvert, Donald

    2017-03-01

    Proteins that self-assemble into regular shell-like polyhedra are useful, both in nature and in the laboratory, as molecular containers. Here we describe cryo-electron microscopy (EM) structures of two versatile encapsulation systems that exploit engineered electrostatic interactions for cargo loading. We show that increasing the number of negative charges on the lumenal surface of lumazine synthase, a protein that naturally assembles into a ~1-MDa dodecahedron composed of 12 pentamers, induces stepwise expansion of the native protein shell, giving rise to thermostable ~3-MDa and ~6-MDa assemblies containing 180 and 360 subunits, respectively. Remarkably, these expanded particles assume unprecedented tetrahedrally and icosahedrally symmetric structures constructed entirely from pentameric units. Large keyhole-shaped pores in the shell, not present in the wild-type capsid, enable diffusion-limited encapsulation of complementarily charged guests. The structures of these supercharged assemblies demonstrate how programmed electrostatic effects can be effectively harnessed to tailor the architecture and properties of protein cages.

  6. Structure and assembly of scalable porous protein cages

    PubMed Central

    Sasaki, Eita; Böhringer, Daniel; van de Waterbeemd, Michiel; Leibundgut, Marc; Zschoche, Reinhard; Heck, Albert J. R.; Ban, Nenad; Hilvert, Donald

    2017-01-01

    Proteins that self-assemble into regular shell-like polyhedra are useful, both in nature and in the laboratory, as molecular containers. Here we describe cryo-electron microscopy (EM) structures of two versatile encapsulation systems that exploit engineered electrostatic interactions for cargo loading. We show that increasing the number of negative charges on the lumenal surface of lumazine synthase, a protein that naturally assembles into a ∼1-MDa dodecahedron composed of 12 pentamers, induces stepwise expansion of the native protein shell, giving rise to thermostable ∼3-MDa and ∼6-MDa assemblies containing 180 and 360 subunits, respectively. Remarkably, these expanded particles assume unprecedented tetrahedrally and icosahedrally symmetric structures constructed entirely from pentameric units. Large keyhole-shaped pores in the shell, not present in the wild-type capsid, enable diffusion-limited encapsulation of complementarily charged guests. The structures of these supercharged assemblies demonstrate how programmed electrostatic effects can be effectively harnessed to tailor the architecture and properties of protein cages. PMID:28281548

  7. Structure and assembly of scalable porous protein cages.

    PubMed

    Sasaki, Eita; Böhringer, Daniel; van de Waterbeemd, Michiel; Leibundgut, Marc; Zschoche, Reinhard; Heck, Albert J R; Ban, Nenad; Hilvert, Donald

    2017-03-10

    Proteins that self-assemble into regular shell-like polyhedra are useful, both in nature and in the laboratory, as molecular containers. Here we describe cryo-electron microscopy (EM) structures of two versatile encapsulation systems that exploit engineered electrostatic interactions for cargo loading. We show that increasing the number of negative charges on the lumenal surface of lumazine synthase, a protein that naturally assembles into a ∼1-MDa dodecahedron composed of 12 pentamers, induces stepwise expansion of the native protein shell, giving rise to thermostable ∼3-MDa and ∼6-MDa assemblies containing 180 and 360 subunits, respectively. Remarkably, these expanded particles assume unprecedented tetrahedrally and icosahedrally symmetric structures constructed entirely from pentameric units. Large keyhole-shaped pores in the shell, not present in the wild-type capsid, enable diffusion-limited encapsulation of complementarily charged guests. The structures of these supercharged assemblies demonstrate how programmed electrostatic effects can be effectively harnessed to tailor the architecture and properties of protein cages.

  8. An enigmatic peptide ligation reaction: protease-catalyzed oligomerization of a native protein segment in neat aqueous solution.

    PubMed

    Kumaran, S; Datta, D; Roy, R P

    2000-04-01

    We report an enigmatic peptide ligation reaction catalyzed by Glu-specific Staphylococcus aureus V8 protease that occurs in neat aqueous solution around neutral pH utilizing a totally unprotected peptide substrate containing free alpha-carboxyl and alpha-amino groups. V8 protease catalyzed a chain of ligation steps between pH 6 and 8 at 4 degrees C, producing a gamut of covalent oligomers (dimer through octamer or higher) of a native protein segment TAAAKFE (S39) derived from ribonuclease A (RNAse A). Size-exclusion chromatography suggested the absence of strong interaction between the reacting peptides. The circular dichroism spectra of monomer through pentamer showed length-dependent enhancement of secondary structure in the oligomers, suggesting that protease-catalyzed ligation of a monomer to an oligomer resulted in a product that was more structured than its precursor. The relative conformational stability of the oligomers was reflected in their ability to resist proteolysis, indicating that the oligomerization reaction was facilitated as a consequence of the "conformational trapping" of the product. The ligation reaction proceeded in two phases-slow formation and accumulation of the dimer followed by a fast phase of oligomerization, implying that the conformational trap encountered in the oligomerization reaction was a two-step process. The Gly substitution at any position of the TAAAKFE sequence was deleterious, suggesting that the first step of the conformational trap, namely the dimerization reaction, that proceeded very slowly even with the parent peptide, was quite sensitive to amino acid sequence. In contrast, the oligomerization reaction of an Ala analog, AAAAKFE, occurred in much the same way as S39, albeit with faster rate, suggesting that Ala substitution stabilized the overall conformational trapping process. The results suggest the viability of the product-directed "conformational trap" as a mechanism to achieve peptide ligation of totally

  9. Thermostabilisation of membrane proteins for structural studies

    PubMed Central

    Magnani, Francesca; Serrano-Vega, Maria J.; Shibata, Yoko; Abdul-Hussein, Saba; Lebon, Guillaume; Miller-Gallacher, Jennifer; Singhal, Ankita; Strege, Annette; Thomas, Jennifer A.; Tate, Christopher G.

    2017-01-01

    The thermostability of an integral membrane protein in detergent solution is a key parameter that dictates the likelihood of obtaining well-diffracting crystals suitable for structure determination. However, many mammalian membrane proteins are too unstable for crystallisation. We developed a thermostabilisation strategy based on systematic mutagenesis coupled to a radioligand-binding thermostability assay that can be applied to receptors, ion channels and transporters. It takes approximately 6-12 months to thermostabilise a G protein-coupled receptor (GPCR) containing 300 amino acid residues. The resulting thermostabilised membrane proteins are more easily crystallised and result in high-quality structures. This methodology has facilitated structure-based drug design applied to GPCRs, because it is possible to determine multiple structures of the thermostabilised receptors bound to low affinity ligands. Protocols and advice are given on how to develop thermostability assays for membrane proteins and how to combine mutations to make an optimally stable mutant suitable for structural studies. PMID:27466713

  10. Probing possible downhill folding: native contact topology likely places a significant constraint on the folding cooperativity of proteins with approximately 40 residues.

    PubMed

    Badasyan, Artem; Liu, Zhirong; Chan, Hue Sun

    2008-12-12

    Experiments point to appreciable variations in folding cooperativity among natural proteins with approximately 40 residues, indicating that the behaviors of these proteins are valuable for delineating the contributing factors to cooperative folding. To explore the role of native topology in a protein's propensity to fold cooperatively and how native topology might constrain the degree of cooperativity achievable by a given set of physical interactions, we compared folding/unfolding kinetics simulated using three classes of native-centric C(alpha) chain models with different interaction schemes. The approach was applied to two homologous 45-residue fragments from the peripheral subunit-binding domain family and a 39-residue fragment of the N-terminal domain of ribosomal protein L9. Free-energy profiles as functions of native contact number were computed to assess the heights of thermodynamic barriers to folding. In addition, chevron plots of folding/unfolding rates were constructed as functions of native stability to facilitate comparison with available experimental data. Although common Gō-like models with pairwise Lennard-Jones-type interactions generally fold less cooperatively than real proteins, the rank ordering of cooperativity predicted by these models is consistent with experiment for the proteins investigated, showing increasing folding cooperativity with increasing nonlocality of a protein's native contacts. Models that account for water-expulsion (desolvation) barriers and models with many-body (nonadditive) interactions generally entail higher degrees of folding cooperativity indicated by more linear model chevron plots, but the rank ordering of cooperativity remains unchanged. A robust, experimentally valid rank ordering of model folding cooperativity independent of the multiple native-centric interaction schemes tested here argues that native topology places significant constraints on how cooperatively a protein can fold.

  11. 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.

  12. Website on Protein Interaction and Protein Structure Related Work

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Samanta, Manoj; Liang, Shoudan; Biegel, Bryan (Technical Monitor)

    2003-01-01

    In today's world, three seemingly diverse fields - computer information technology, nanotechnology and biotechnology are joining forces to enlarge our scientific knowledge and solve complex technological problems. Our group is dedicated to conduct theoretical research exploring the challenges in this area. The major areas of research include: 1) Yeast Protein Interactions; 2) Protein Structures; and 3) Current Transport through Small Molecules.

  13. The Native American adolescent: social network structure and perceptions of alcohol induced social problems.

    PubMed

    Rees, Carter; Freng, Adrienne; Winfree, L Thomas

    2014-03-01

    Race/ethnicity and the structure of an adolescent's social network are both important factors in the etiology of delinquent behavior. Yet, much of the minority-group delinquency literature overlooks the Native American youth population that traditionally exhibits high rates of alcohol use and abuse. Utilizing data from the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health, we compare the structural characteristics of school-based friendship networks of American Indian youth and other racial/ethnic groups. Our core sample for the descriptive analysis consists of 70,841 youth (Caucasian = 42,096; Black = 13,554; Asian = 4,758; Hispanic = 4,464; American Indian = 3,426; Other = 2,543; Female = 50%). We find that Native American youth generally occupy similar social positions within school hierarchies compared to other minority groups. However, American Indian youth have fewer ties at the school level than Caucasian youth, including reports of fewer reciprocated friendships, a smaller number of in-school friends, and membership in less cohesive personal networks. We also focus on the detrimental social and physical consequences of alcohol use during adolescence and offer an extended consequences model (n = 5,841) that includes the interactive effects of race/ethnicity, age, and drinking influences on relationships with friends (Caucasian = 59%; Black = 19%; Asian = 7%; Hispanic = 7%; American Indian = 5%; Other = 3%; Female = 54%). American Indian youth are no more likely than other youth to report personal drinking as being detrimental to social relationships with parents, peers, and romantic partners. We address ties between our findings and criminal justice policies and practices, as well as the implications for similar network analyses involving other racial/ethnic groups.

  14. Multistage unfolding of an SH3 domain: an initial urea-filled dry molten globule precedes a wet molten globule with non-native structure.

    PubMed

    Dasgupta, Amrita; Udgaonkar, Jayant B; Das, Payel

    2014-06-19

    The unfolding of the SH3 domain of the PI3 kinase in aqueous urea has been studied using a synergistic experiment-simulation approach. The experimental observation of a transient wet molten globule intermediate, IU, with an unusual non-native burial of the sole Trp residue, W53, provides the benchmark for the unfolding simulations performed (eight in total, each at least 0.5 μs long). The simulations reveal that the partially unfolded IU ensemble is preceded by an early native-like molten globule intermediate ensemble I*. In the very initial stage of unfolding, dry globule conformations with the protein core filled with urea instead of water are transiently observed within the I* ensemble. Water penetration into the urea-filled core of dry globule conformations is frequently accompanied by very transient burial of W53. Later during gradual unfolding, W53 is seen to again become transiently buried in the IU ensemble for a much longer time. In the structurally heterogeneous IU ensemble, conformational flexibility of the C-terminal β-strands enables W53 burial by the formation of non-native, tertiary contacts with hydrophobic residues, which could serve to protect the protein from aggregation during unfolding.

  15. Assessing the Chemical Accuracy of Protein Structures via Peptide Acidity

    PubMed Central

    Anderson, Janet S.; Hernández, Griselda; LeMaster, David M.

    2012-01-01

    Although the protein native state is a Boltzmann conformational ensemble, practical applications often require a representative model from the most populated region of that distribution. The acidity of the backbone amides, as reflected in hydrogen exchange rates, is exquisitely sensitive to the surrounding charge and dielectric volume distribution. For each of four proteins, three independently determined X-ray structures of differing crystallographic resolution were used to predict exchange for the static solvent-exposed amide hydrogens. The average correlation coefficients range from 0.74 for ubiquitin to 0.93 for Pyrococcus furiosus rubredoxin, reflecting the larger range of experimental exchange rates exhibited by the latter protein. The exchange prediction errors modestly correlate with the crystallographic resolution. MODELLER 9v6-derived homology models at ~60% sequence identity (36% identity for chymotrypsin inhibitor CI2) yielded correlation coefficients that are ~0.1 smaller than for the cognate X-ray structures. The most recently deposited NOE-based ubiquitin structure and the original NMR structure of CI2 fail to provide statistically significant predictions of hydrogen exchange. However, the more recent RECOORD refinement study of CI2 yielded predictions comparable to the X-ray and homology model-based analyses. PMID:23182463

  16. Predicting protein structures with a multiplayer online game.

    PubMed

    Cooper, Seth; Khatib, Firas; Treuille, Adrien; Barbero, Janos; Lee, Jeehyung; Beenen, Michael; Leaver-Fay, Andrew; Baker, David; Popović, Zoran; Players, Foldit

    2010-08-05

    People exert large amounts of problem-solving effort playing computer games. Simple image- and text-recognition tasks have been successfully 'crowd-sourced' through games, but it is not clear if more complex scientific problems can be solved with human-directed computing. Protein structure prediction is one such problem: locating the biologically relevant native conformation of a protein is a formidable computational challenge given the very large size of the search space. Here we describe Foldit, a multiplayer online game that engages non-scientists in solving hard prediction problems. Foldit players interact with protein structures using direct manipulation tools and user-friendly versions of algorithms from the Rosetta structure prediction methodology, while they compete and collaborate to optimize the computed energy. We show that top-ranked Foldit players excel at solving challenging structure refinement problems in which substantial backbone rearrangements are necessary to achieve the burial of hydrophobic residues. Players working collaboratively develop a rich assortment of new strategies and algorithms; unlike computational approaches, they explore not only the conformational space but also the space of possible search strategies. The integration of human visual problem-solving and strategy development capabilities with traditional computational algorithms through interactive multiplayer games is a powerful new approach to solving computationally-limited scientific problems.

  17. Expression of a foreign Rubisco small subunit in tobacco with reduced levels of the native protein

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The cDNA, ArRbcS3, for the small subunit of Rubisco from Amaranthus retroflexus (pigweed) was expressed in tobacco (Nicotiana tabacum) under the control of a strong leaf-specific Lhcb promoter. The coding region of the ArRbcS3 was fused to the plastid targeting sequence of the native tobacco rbcS to...

  18. PSSweb: protein structural statistics web server.

    PubMed

    Gaillard, Thomas; Stote, Roland H; Dejaegere, Annick

    2016-07-08

    With the increasing number of protein structures available, there is a need for tools capable of automating the comparison of ensembles of structures, a common requirement in structural biology and bioinformatics. PSSweb is a web server for protein structural statistics. It takes as input an ensemble of PDB files of protein structures, performs a multiple sequence alignment and computes structural statistics for each position of the alignment. Different optional functionalities are proposed: structure superposition, Cartesian coordinate statistics, dihedral angle calculation and statistics, and a cluster analysis based on dihedral angles. An interactive report is generated, containing a summary of the results, tables, figures and 3D visualization of superposed structures. The server is available at http://pssweb.org.

  19. PSSweb: protein structural statistics web server

    PubMed Central

    Gaillard, Thomas; Stote, Roland H.; Dejaegere, Annick

    2016-01-01

    With the increasing number of protein structures available, there is a need for tools capable of automating the comparison of ensembles of structures, a common requirement in structural biology and bioinformatics. PSSweb is a web server for protein structural statistics. It takes as input an ensemble of PDB files of protein structures, performs a multiple sequence alignment and computes structural statistics for each position of the alignment. Different optional functionalities are proposed: structure superposition, Cartesian coordinate statistics, dihedral angle calculation and statistics, and a cluster analysis based on dihedral angles. An interactive report is generated, containing a summary of the results, tables, figures and 3D visualization of superposed structures. The server is available at http://pssweb.org. PMID:27174930

  20. Mapping Proteoforms and Protein Complexes From King Cobra Venom Using Both Denaturing and Native Top-down Proteomics.

    PubMed

    Melani, Rafael D; Skinner, Owen S; Fornelli, Luca; Domont, Gilberto B; Compton, Philip D; Kelleher, Neil L

    2016-07-01

    Characterizing whole proteins by top-down proteomics avoids a step of inference encountered in the dominant bottom-up methodology when peptides are assembled computationally into proteins for identification. The direct interrogation of whole proteins and protein complexes from the venom of Ophiophagus hannah (king cobra) provides a sharply clarified view of toxin sequence variation, transit peptide cleavage sites and post-translational modifications (PTMs) likely critical for venom lethality. A tube-gel format for electrophoresis (called GELFrEE) and solution isoelectric focusing were used for protein fractionation prior to LC-MS/MS analysis resulting in 131 protein identifications (18 more than bottom-up) and a total of 184 proteoforms characterized from 14 protein toxin families. Operating both GELFrEE and mass spectrometry to preserve non-covalent interactions generated detailed information about two of the largest venom glycoprotein complexes: the homodimeric l-amino acid oxidase (∼130 kDa) and the multichain toxin cobra venom factor (∼147 kDa). The l-amino acid oxidase complex exhibited two clusters of multiproteoform complexes corresponding to the presence of 5 or 6 N-glycans moieties, each consistent with a distribution of N-acetyl hexosamines. Employing top-down proteomics in both native and denaturing modes provides unprecedented characterization of venom proteoforms and their complexes. A precise molecular inventory of venom proteins will propel the study of snake toxin variation and the targeted development of new antivenoms or other biotherapeutics.

  1. Efficient Conformational Search Based on Structural Dissimilarity Sampling: Applications for Reproducing Structural Transitions of Proteins.

    PubMed

    Harada, Ryuhei; Shigeta, Yasuteru

    2017-03-14

    Structural Dissimilarity Sampling (SDS) is proposed as an efficient conformational search method to promote structural transitions essential for the biological functions of proteins. In SDS, initial structures are selected based on structural dissimilarity, and conformational resampling is repeated. Conformational resampling is performed as follows: (I) arrangement of initial structures for a diverse distribution at the edge of a conformational subspace and (II) promotion of the structural transitions with multiple short-time molecular dynamics (MD) simulations restarting from the diversely distributed initial structures. Cycles of (I) and (II) are repeated to intensively promote structural transitions because conformational resampling from the initial structures would quickly expand conformational distributions toward unvisited conformational subspaces. As a demonstration, SDS was first applied to maltodextrin binding protein (MBP) in explicit water to reproduce structural transitions between the open and closed states of MBP. Structural transitions of MBP were successfully reproduced with SDS in nanosecond-order simulation times. Starting from both the open and closed forms, SDS successfully reproduced the structural transitions within 25 cycles (a total of 250 ns of simulation time). For reference, a conventional long-time (500 ns) MD simulation under NPT (300 K and 1 bar) starting from the open form failed to reproduce the structural transition. In addition to the open-closed motions of MBP, SDS was applied to folding processes of the fast-folding proteins (chignolin, Trp-cage, and villin) and successfully sampled their native states. To confirm how the selections of initial structures affected conformational sampling efficiency, numbers of base sets for characterizing structural dissimilarity of initial structures were addressed in distinct trials of SDS. The parameter searches showed that the conformational sampling efficiency was relatively insensitive with

  2. Stand Structural Controls on Evapotranspiration in Native and Invaded Tropical Montane Cloud Forest in Hawai'i

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Giambelluca, T. W.; Delay, J. K.; Asner, G. P.; Martin, R. E.; Nullet, M. A.; Huang, M.; Mudd, R. G.; Takahashi, M.

    2008-12-01

    Tropical montane cloud forests (TMCFs) in Hawai'i are important zones of water input and stores of critically important native plant and animal species. Invasion by alien tree species threatens these forests and may alter the hydrological services they provide. At two TMCF sites in Hawai'i, one within native Metrosideros polymorpha forest and the other at a site heavily invaded by Psidium cattleianum, we are conducting measurements of stand-level evapotranspiration (ET), transpiration (using sapflow techniques), energy balance, and related processes. Previously presented results showed that ET as a function of available energy was 27% higher at the invaded site than the native site, with the difference rising to 53% during dry- canopy periods. In this presentation, mechanisms for the observed higher ET rate at the invaded site are explored. The difference in measured xylem flow velocities of native and alien trees cannot explain the observed stand level ET difference. Tree basal area is lower at the invaded site than the native site, again contrary to the ET difference. However, the alien trees have much smaller stem diameters, on average, than the native trees, with little or no heartwood. Hence, the cross-sectional xylem area is much greater in the invaded stand, facilitating higher transpiration rates. These results demonstrate the importance of stand structural controls on ET and raise questions about whether higher ET is a transient feature of the succession or a persistent characteristic of invasive trees.

  3. Structural determinants of TRIM protein function.

    PubMed

    Esposito, Diego; Koliopoulos, Marios G; Rittinger, Katrin

    2017-02-08

    Tripartite motif (TRIM) proteins constitute one of the largest subfamilies of Really Interesting New Gene (RING) E3 ubiquitin ligases and contribute to the regulation of numerous cellular activities, including innate immune responses. The conserved TRIM harbours a RING domain that imparts E3 ligase activity to TRIM family proteins, whilst a variable C-terminal region can mediate recognition of substrate proteins. The knowledge of the structure of these multidomain proteins and the functional interplay between their constituent domains is paramount to understanding their cellular roles. To date, available structural information on TRIM proteins is still largely restricted to subdomains of many TRIMs in isolation. Nevertheless, applying a combination of structural, biophysical and biochemical approaches has recently allowed important progress to be made towards providing a better understanding of the molecular features that underlie the function of TRIM family proteins and has uncovered an unexpected diversity in the link between self-association and catalytic activity.

  4. Protein Structure Determination Using Protein Threading and Sparse NMR Data

    SciTech Connect

    Crawford, O.H.; Einstein, J.R.; Xu, D.; Xu, Y.

    1999-11-14

    It is well known that the NMR method for protein structure determination applies to small proteins and that its effectiveness decreases very rapidly as the molecular weight increases beyond about 30 kD. We have recently developed a method for protein structure determination that can fully utilize partial NMR data as calculation constraints. The core of the method is a threading algorithm that guarantees to find a globally optimal alignment between a query sequence and a template structure, under distance constraints specified by NMR/NOE data. Our preliminary tests have demonstrated that a small number of NMR/NOE distance restraints can significantly improve threading performance in both fold recognition and threading-alignment accuracy, and can possibly extend threading's scope of applicability from structural homologs to structural analogs. An accurate backbone structure generated by NMR-constrained threading can then provide a significant amount of structural information, equivalent to that provided by the NMR method with many NMR/NOE restraints; and hence can greatly reduce the amount of NMR data typically required for accurate structure determination. Our preliminary study suggests that a small number of NMR/NOE restraints may suffice to determine adequately the all-atom structure when those restraints are incorporated in a procedure combining threading, modeling of loops and sidechains, and molecular dynamics simulation. Potentially, this new technique can expand NMR's capability to larger proteins.

  5. Prediction of protein function from protein sequence and structure.

    PubMed

    Whisstock, James C; Lesk, Arthur M

    2003-08-01

    The sequence of a genome contains the plans of the possible life of an organism, but implementation of genetic information depends on the functions of the proteins and nucleic acids that it encodes. Many individual proteins of known sequence and structure present challenges to the understanding of their function. In particular, a number of genes responsible for diseases have been identified but their specific functions are unknown. Whole-genome sequencing projects are a major source of proteins of unknown function. Annotation of a genome involves assignment of functions to gene products, in most cases on the basis of amino-acid sequence alone. 3D structure can aid the assignment of function, motivating the challenge of structural genomics projects to make structural information available for novel uncharacterized proteins. Structure-based identification of homologues often succeeds where sequence-alone-based methods fail, because in many cases evolution retains the folding pattern long after sequence similarity becomes undetectable. Nevertheless, prediction of protein function from sequence and structure is a difficult problem, because homologous proteins often have different functions. Many methods of function prediction rely on identifying similarity in sequence and/or structure between a protein of unknown function and one or more well-understood proteins. Alternative methods include inferring conservation patterns in members of a functionally uncharacterized family for which many sequences and structures are known. However, these inferences are tenuous. Such methods provide reasonable guesses at function, but are far from foolproof. It is therefore fortunate that the development of whole-organism approaches and comparative genomics permits other approaches to function prediction when the data are available. These include the use of protein-protein interaction patterns, and correlations between occurrences of related proteins in different organisms, as

  6. Microfluidic Approaches for Protein Crystal Structure Analysis.

    PubMed

    Maeki, Masatoshi; Yamaguchi, Hiroshi; Tokeshi, Manabu; Miyazaki, Masaya

    2016-01-01

    This review summarizes two microfluidic-based protein crystallization methods, protein crystallization behavior in the microfluidic devices, and their applications for X-ray crystal structure analysis. Microfluidic devices provide many advantages for protein crystallography; they require small sample volumes, provide high-throughput screening, and allow control of the protein crystallization. A droplet-based protein crystallization method is a useful technique for high-throughput screening and the formation of a single crystal without any complicated device fabrication process. Well-based microfluidic platforms also enable effective protein crystallization. This review also summarizes the protein crystal growth behavior in microfluidic devices as, is known from viewpoints of theoretical and experimental approaches. Finally, we introduce applications of microfluidic devices for on-chip crystal structure analysis.

  7. Protein structure prediction from sequence variation

    PubMed Central

    Marks, Debora S; Hopf, Thomas A; Sander, Chris

    2015-01-01

    Genomic sequences contain rich evolutionary information about functional constraints on macromolecules such as proteins. This information can be efficiently mined to detect evolutionary couplings between residues in proteins and address the long-standing challenge to compute protein three-dimensional structures from amino acid sequences. Substantial progress has recently been made on this problem owing to the explosive growth in available sequences and the application of global statistical methods. In addition to three-dimensional structure, the improved understanding of covariation may help identify functional residues involved in ligand binding, protein-complex formation and conformational changes. We expect computation of covariation patterns to complement experimental structural biology in elucidating the full spectrum of protein structures, their functional interactions and evolutionary dynamics. PMID:23138306

  8. Homology-Based Modeling of Protein Structure

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xiang, Zhexin

    The human genome project has already discovered millions of proteins (http://www.swissprot.com). The potential of the genome project can only be fully realized once we can assign, understand, manipulate, and predict the function of these new proteins (Sanchez and Sali, 1997; Frishman et al., 2000; Domingues et al., 2000). Predicting protein function generally requires knowledge of protein three-dimensional structure (Blundell et al., 1978;Weber, 1990), which is ultimately determined by protein sequence (Anfinsen, 1973). Protein structure determination using experimental methods such as X-ray crystallography or NMR spectroscopy is very time consuming (Johnson et al. 1994). To date, fewer than 2% of the known proteins have had their structures solved experimentally. In 2004, more than half a million new proteins were sequenced that almost doubled the efforts in the previous year, but only 5300 structures were solved. Although the rate of experimental structure determination will continue to increase, the number of newly discovered sequences grows much faster than the number of structures solved (see Fig. 10.1).

  9. Protein NMR structures refined without NOE data.

    PubMed

    Ryu, Hyojung; Kim, Tae-Rae; Ahn, SeonJoo; Ji, Sunyoung; Lee, Jinhyuk

    2014-01-01

    The refinement of low-quality structures is an important challenge in protein structure prediction. Many studies have been conducted on protein structure refinement; the refinement of structures derived from NMR spectroscopy has been especially intensively studied. In this study, we generated flat-bottom distance potential instead of NOE data because NOE data have ambiguity and uncertainty. The potential was derived from distance information from given structures and prevented structural dislocation during the refinement process. A simulated annealing protocol was used to minimize the potential energy of the structure. The protocol was tested on 134 NMR structures in the Protein Data Bank (PDB) that also have X-ray structures. Among them, 50 structures were used as a training set to find the optimal "width" parameter in the flat-bottom distance potential functions. In the validation set (the other 84 structures), most of the 12 quality assessment scores of the refined structures were significantly improved (total score increased from 1.215 to 2.044). Moreover, the secondary structure similarity of the refined structure was improved over that of the original structure. Finally, we demonstrate that the combination of two energy potentials, statistical torsion angle potential (STAP) and the flat-bottom distance potential, can drive the refinement of NMR structures.

  10. Crystal structure of native and a mutant of Lampyris turkestanicus luciferase implicate in bioluminescence color shift.

    PubMed

    Kheirabadi, Mitra; Sharafian, Zohreh; Naderi-Manesh, Hossein; Heineman, Udo; Gohlke, Ulrich; Hosseinkhani, Saman

    2013-12-01

    Firefly bioluminescence reaction in the presence of Mg(2+), ATP and molecular oxygen is carried out by luciferase. The luciferase structure alterations or modifications of assay conditions determine the bioluminescence color of firefly luciferase. Among different beetle luciferases, Phrixothrix hirtus railroad worm emits either yellow or red bioluminescence color. Sequence alignment analysis shows that the red-emitter luciferase from Phrixothrix hirtus has an additional arginine residue at 353 that is absent in other firefly luciferases. It was reported that insertion of Arg in an important flexible loop350-359 showed changes in bioluminescence color from green to red and the optimum temperature activity was also increased. To explain the color tuning mechanism of firefly luciferase, the structure of native and a mutant (E354R/356R/H431Y) of Lampyris turkestanicus luciferase is determined at 2.7Å and 2.2Å resolutions, respectively. The comparison of structure of both types of Lampyris turkestanicus luciferases reveals that the conformation of this flexible loop is significantly changed by addition of two Arg in this region. Moreover, its surface accessibility is affected considerably and some ionic bonds are made by addition of two positive charge residues. Furthermore, we noticed that the hydrogen bonding pattern of His431 with the flexible loop is changed by replacing this residue with Tyr at this position. Juxtaposition of a flexible loop (residues 351-359) in firefly luciferase and corresponding ionic and hydrogen bonds are essential for color emission.

  11. Intermediate monomer-dimer equilibrium structure of native ICAM-1: implication for enhanced cell adhesion.

    PubMed

    Oh, Hyun-Mee; Kwon, Min-Sung; Kim, Hyang-Jin; Jeon, Byeong-Hun; Kim, Hye-Ran; Choi, Hyang-Ok; Na, Bo-Ra; Eom, Soo-Hyun; Song, Nam Woong; Jun, Chang-Duk

    2011-01-15

    Dimeric intercellular adhesion molecule-1 (ICAM-1) has been known to more efficiently mediate cell adhesion than monomeric ICAM-1. Here, we found that truncation of the intracellular domain of ICAM-1 significantly enhances surface dimerization based on the two criteria: 1) the binding degree of monomer-specific antibody CA-7 and 2) the ratio of dimer/monomer when a mutation (L42→C42) was introduced in the interface of domain 1. Mutation analysis revealed that the positively charged amino acids, including very membrane-proximal ⁵⁰⁵R, are essential for maintaining the structural transition between the monomer and dimer. Despite a strong dimer presentation, the ICAM-1 mutants lacking an intracellular domain (IC1ΔCTD) or containing R to A substitution in position 505 (⁵⁰⁵R/A) supported a lower degree of cell adhesion than did wild-type ICAM-1. Collectively, these results demonstrate that the native structure of surface ICAM-1 is not a dimer, but is an intermediate monomer-dimer equilibrium structure by which the effectiveness of ICAM-1 can be fully achieved.

  12. Retrieving Backbone String Neighbors Provides Insights Into Structural Modeling of Membrane Proteins*

    PubMed Central

    Sun, Jiang-Ming; Li, Tong-Hua; Cong, Pei-Sheng; Tang, Sheng-Nan; Xiong, Wen-Wei

    2012-01-01

    Identification of protein structural neighbors to a query is fundamental in structure and function prediction. Here we present BS-align, a systematic method to retrieve backbone string neighbors from primary sequences as templates for protein modeling. The backbone conformation of a protein is represented by the backbone string, as defined in Ramachandran space. The backbone string of a query can be accurately predicted by two innovative technologies: a knowledge-driven sequence alignment and encoding of a backbone string element profile. Then, the predicted backbone string is employed to align against a backbone string database and retrieve a set of backbone string neighbors. The backbone string neighbors were shown to be close to native structures of query proteins. BS-align was successfully employed to predict models of 10 membrane proteins with lengths ranging between 229 and 595 residues, and whose high-resolution structural determinations were difficult to elucidate both by experiment and prediction. The obtained TM-scores and root mean square deviations of the models confirmed that the models based on the backbone string neighbors retrieved by the BS-align were very close to the native membrane structures although the query and the neighbor shared a very low sequence identity. The backbone string system represents a new road for the prediction of protein structure from sequence, and suggests that the similarity of the backbone string would be more informative than describing a protein as belonging to a fold. PMID:22415040

  13. Impact of amylosucrase modification on the structural and physicochemical properties of native and acid-thinned waxy corn starch.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Hao; Zhou, Xing; He, Jian; Wang, Tao; Luo, Xiaohu; Wang, Li; Wang, Ren; Chen, Zhengxing

    2017-04-01

    Recombinant amylosucrase from Neisseria polysaccharea was utilized to modify native and acid-thinned starches. The molecular structures and physicochemical properties of modified starches were investigated. Acid-thinned starch displayed much lower viscosity after gelatinization than did the native starch. However, the enzyme exhibited similar catalytic efficiency for both forms of starch. The modified starches had higher proportions of long (DP>33) and intermediate chains (DP 13-33), and X-ray diffraction showed a B-type crystalline structure for all modified starches. With increasing reaction time, the relative crystallinity and endothermic enthalpy of the modified starches gradually decreased, whereas the melting peak temperatures and resistant starch contents increased. Slight differences were observed in thermal parameters, relative crystallinity, and branch chain length distribution between the modified native and acid-thinned starches. Moreover, the digestibility of the modified starches was not affected by acid hydrolysis pretreatment, but was affected by the percentage of intermediate and long chains.

  14. Optimization of Photoactive Protein Z for Fast and Efficient Site-Specific Conjugation of Native IgG

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    Antibody conjugates have been used in a variety of applications from immunoassays to drug conjugates. However, it is becoming increasingly clear that in order to maximize an antibody’s antigen binding ability and to produce homogeneous antibody-conjugates, the conjugated molecule should be attached onto IgG site-specifically. We previously developed a facile method for the site-specific modification of full length, native IgGs by engineering a recombinant Protein Z that forms a covalent link to the Fc domain of IgG upon exposure to long wavelength UV light. To further improve the efficiency of Protein Z production and IgG conjugation, we constructed a panel of 13 different Protein Z variants with the UV-active amino acid benzoylphenylalanine (BPA) in different locations. By using this panel of Protein Z to cross-link a range of IgGs from different hosts, including human, mouse, and rat, we discovered two previously unknown Protein Z variants, L17BPA and K35BPA, that are capable of cross-linking many commonly used IgG isotypes with efficiencies ranging from 60% to 95% after only 1 h of UV exposure. When compared to existing site-specific methods, which often require cloning or enzymatic reactions, the Protein Z-based method described here, utilizing the L17BPA, K35BPA, and the previously described Q32BPA variants, represents a vastly more accessible and efficient approach that is compatible with nearly all native IgGs, thus making site-specific conjugation more accessible to the general research community. PMID:25121619

  15. Deconvolution method for specific and nonspecific binding of ligand to multi-protein complex by native mass spectrometry

    PubMed Central

    Guan, Shenheng; Trnka, Michael J.; Burlingame, Alma L.; Bushnell, David A.; Robinson, Philip J. J.; Kornberg, Roger D.; Gestwicki, Jason E.; Prusiner, Stanley B.

    2016-01-01

    In native mass spectrometry, it has been difficult to discriminate between specific binding of a ligand to a multi-protein complex from the nonspecific interactions. Here, we present a deconvolution model that consists of two levels of data reduction. At the first level, the apparent association binding constants are extracted from the measured intensities of the target/ligand complexes by varying ligand concentration. At the second level, two functional forms representing the specific- and non-specific binding events are fit to the binding constants obtained from the first level of modeling. Using this approach, we found that an inverse power distribution described nonspecific binding of α-amanitin to yeast RNA polymerase II. Moreover, treating the concentration of the multi-protein complex as a fitting parameter reduced the impact of inaccuracies in this experimental measurement on the apparent association constants. This model provides an improved way of separating specific and non-specific binding to large, multi-protein complexes in native mass spectrometry. PMID:26189511

  16. Social Capital and Well-Being: Structural Analyses of Latina Mothers by Nativity.

    PubMed

    Held, Mary L; Cuellar, Matthew

    2016-09-01

    Objective This study examined the direct and mediating effects of maternal social capital on health and well-being for native- and foreign-born Latina mothers and their children. Methods Data were drawn from the baseline and nine-year follow up waves of the Fragile Families and Child Well-being Study. The study included a sample of 874 Latina mothers. Mplus7 was used to perform structural equation modeling to determine whether exogenous indicators (age, education, and economic well-being) predicted social capital, whether social capital predicted mother and child well-being, and whether mediating effects helped explain each relationship. Results For native-born Latinas (n = 540), social capital did not predict maternal or child well-being. However, social capital significantly mediated the effects of age, education, and economic well-being on maternal well-being. For foreign-born Latinas (n = 334), social capital was a significant predictor of maternal well-being. Social capital also mediated the effects of age, education, and economic well-being on maternal, but not child well-being. Younger and foreign-born Latinas who report higher educational attainment and economic well-being have greater social capital, and thus better self-reported health. Conclusion Findings suggest that social capital is particularly relevant to the health of foreign-born Latinas. For all Latina mothers, social capital may serve as a protective mitigating factor to better health. Health service providers should evaluate the potential to integrate programs that promote social capital accumulation for Latinas. Further research should examine factors to improve the health of Latinas' children.

  17. Assembly of water-soluble chlorophyll-binding proteins with native hydrophobic chlorophylls in water-in-oil emulsions.

    PubMed

    Bednarczyk, Dominika; Takahashi, Shigekazu; Satoh, Hiroyuki; Noy, Dror

    2015-03-01

    The challenges involved in studying cofactor binding and assembly, as well as energy- and electron transfer mechanisms in the large and elaborate transmembrane protein complexes of photosynthesis and respiration have prompted considerable interest in constructing simplified model systems based on their water-soluble protein analogs. Such analogs are also promising templates and building blocks for artificial bioinspired energy conversion systems. Yet, development is limited by the challenge of introducing the essential cofactors of natural proteins that are highly water-insoluble into the water-soluble protein analogs. Here we introduce a new efficient method based on water-in-oil emulsions for overcoming this challenge. We demonstrate the effectiveness of the method in the assembly of native chlorophylls with four recombinant variants of the water-soluble chlorophyll-binding protein of Brassicaceae plants. We use the method to gain new insights into the protein-chlorophyll assembly process, and demonstrate its potential as a fast screening system for developing novel chlorophyll-protein complexes.

  18. Efficient protein structure search using indexing methods.

    PubMed

    Kim, Sungchul; Sael, Lee; Yu, Hwanjo

    2013-01-01

    Understanding functions of proteins is one of the most important challenges in many studies of biological processes. The function of a protein can be predicted by analyzing the functions of structurally similar proteins, thus finding structurally similar proteins accurately and efficiently from a large set of proteins is crucial. A protein structure can be represented as a vector by 3D-Zernike Descriptor (3DZD) which compactly represents the surface shape of the protein tertiary structure. This simplified representation accelerates the searching process. However, computing the similarity of two protein structures is still computationally expensive, thus it is hard to efficiently process many simultaneous requests of structurally similar protein search. This paper proposes indexing techniques which substantially reduce the search time to find structurally similar proteins. In particular, we first exploit two indexing techniques, i.e., iDistance and iKernel, on the 3DZDs. After that, we extend the techniques to further improve the search speed for protein structures. The extended indexing techniques build and utilize an reduced index constructed from the first few attributes of 3DZDs of protein structures. To retrieve top-k similar structures, top-10 × k similar structures are first found using the reduced index, and top-k structures are selected among them. We also modify the indexing techniques to support θ-based nearest neighbor search, which returns data points less than θ to the query point. The results show that both iDistance and iKernel significantly enhance the searching speed. In top-k nearest neighbor search, the searching time is reduced 69.6%, 77%, 77.4% and 87.9%, respectively using iDistance, iKernel, the extended iDistance, and the extended iKernel. In θ-based nearest neighbor serach, the searching time is reduced 80%, 81%, 95.6% and 95.6% using iDistance, iKernel, the extended iDistance, and the extended iKernel, respectively.

  19. An intelligent system for comparing protein structures

    SciTech Connect

    Benatan, E.

    1994-12-31

    An approach to protein structure comparison is presented which uses techniques of artificial intelligence (AI) to generate a mapping between two protein structures. The approach proceeds by first identifying the seed of a possible mapping, and then searching for ways to extend the seed by incorporating corresponding elements from the two proteins. Correspondence is judged using heuristic functions which assess the similarity of the structural environments of the elements. The search can be guided by separately encoded knowledge. A prototype has been implemented which is able to rapidly create mappings with a high degree of accuracy in test cases.

  20. Microfluidic Diffusion Analysis of the Sizes and Interactions of Proteins under Native Solution Conditions.

    PubMed

    Arosio, Paolo; Müller, Thomas; Rajah, Luke; Yates, Emma V; Aprile, Francesco A; Zhang, Yingbo; Cohen, Samuel I A; White, Duncan A; Herling, Therese W; De Genst, Erwin J; Linse, Sara; Vendruscolo, Michele; Dobson, Christopher M; Knowles, Tuomas P J

    2016-01-26

    Characterizing the sizes and interactions of macromolecules under native conditions is a challenging problem in many areas of molecular sciences, which fundamentally arises from the polydisperse nature of biomolecular mixtures. Here, we describe a microfluidic platform for diffusional sizing based on monitoring micron-scale mass transport simultaneously in space and time. We show that the global analysis of such combined space-time data enables the hydrodynamic radii of individual species within mixtures to be determined directly by deconvoluting average signals into the contributions from the individual species. We demonstrate that the ability to perform rapid noninvasive sizing allows this method to be used to characterize interactions between biomolecules under native conditions. We illustrate the potential of the technique by implementing a single-step quantitative immunoassay that operates on a time scale of seconds and detects specific interactions between biomolecules within complex mixtures.

  1. Fast loop modeling for protein structures

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Jiong; Nguyen, Son; Shang, Yi; Xu, Dong; Kosztin, Ioan

    2015-03-01

    X-ray crystallography is the main method for determining 3D protein structures. In many cases, however, flexible loop regions of proteins cannot be resolved by this approach. This leads to incomplete structures in the protein data bank, preventing further computational study and analysis of these proteins. For instance, all-atom molecular dynamics (MD) simulation studies of structure-function relationship require complete protein structures. To address this shortcoming, we have developed and implemented an efficient computational method for building missing protein loops. The method is database driven and uses deep learning and multi-dimensional scaling algorithms. We have implemented the method as a simple stand-alone program, which can also be used as a plugin in existing molecular modeling software, e.g., VMD. The quality and stability of the generated structures are assessed and tested via energy scoring functions and by equilibrium MD simulations. The proposed method can also be used in template-based protein structure prediction. Work supported by the National Institutes of Health [R01 GM100701]. Computer time was provided by the University of Missouri Bioinformatics Consortium.

  2. Datamining protein structure databanks for crystallization patterns of proteins.

    PubMed

    Valafar, Homayoun; Prestegard, James H; Valafar, Faramarz

    2002-12-01

    A study of 345 protein structures selected among 1,500 structures determined by nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) methods, revealed useful correlations between crystallization properties and several parameters for the studied proteins. NMR methods of structure determination do not require the growth of protein crystals, and hence allow comparison of properties of proteins that have or have not been the subject of crystallographic approaches. One- and two-dimensional statistical analyses of the data confirmed a hypothesized relation between the size of the molecule and its crystallization potential. Furthermore, two-dimensional Bayesian analysis revealed a significant relationship between relative ratio of different secondary structures and the likelihood of success for crystallization trials. The most immediate result is an apparent correlation of crystallization potential with protein size. Further analysis of the data revealed a relationship between the unstructured fraction of proteins and the success of its crystallization. Utilization of Bayesian analysis on the latter correlation resulted in a prediction performance of about 64%, whereas a two-dimensional Bayesian analysis succeeded with a performance of about 75%.

  3. Temperature induced structural transitions from native to unfolded aggregated states of tobacco etch virus protease

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhu, Guo-Fei; Ren, Si-Yan; Xi, Lei; Du, Lin-Fang; Zhu, Xiao-Feng

    2015-02-01

    Tobacco etch virus protease (TEVp) is widely used to remove fusion tags from recombinant proteins because of its high and unique specificity. This work describes the conformational and the thermodynamic properties in the unfolding/refolding process of TEVp3M (three-point mutant: L56V/S135G/S219V) induced by temperature. With temperature increasing from 20 to 100 °C, the CD spectra showed a transition trend from α-helix to β-sheet, and the fluorescence emission, synchronous fluorescence, ANS and RLS spectroscopy consistently revealed that the temperature-induced unfolding process behaved in a three-state manner, for there was a relatively stable intermediate state observed around 50 °C. The reversibility of thermal unfolding of TEVp3M further showed that the transition from the native to the intermediate state was reversible (below 50 °C), however the transition from the intermediate to the unfolded state was irreversible (above 60 °C). Moreover, aggregates were observed above 60 °C as revealed by SDS-PAGE, Thioflavin-T fluorescence and Congo red absorbance.

  4. Factor Structure of the Wechsler Intelligence Scales for Children-Fourth Edition among Referred Native American Students

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Nakano, Selena; Watkins, Marley W.

    2013-01-01

    The Native American population is severely underrepresented in empirical test validity research despite being overrepresented in special education programs and at increased risk for psychoeducational evaluation. The structural validity of the Wechsler Intelligence Scale for Children-Fourth Edition (WISC-IV) was investigated with a sample of 176,…

  5. Structural features of protein folding nuclei.

    PubMed

    Garbuzynskiy, S O; Kondratova, M S

    2008-03-05

    A crucial event of protein folding is the formation of a folding nucleus. We demonstrate the presence of a considerable coincidence between the location of folding nuclei and the location of so-called "root structural motifs", which have unique overall folds and handedness. In the case of proteins with a single root structural motif, the involvement in the formation of a folding nucleus is in average significantly higher for amino acids residues that are in root structural motifs, compared to residues in other parts of the protein. The tests carried out revealed that the observed difference is statistically reliable. Thus, a structural feature that corresponds to the protein folding nucleus is now found.

  6. The 46 kDa dimeric protein from Variovorax paradoxus shows faster methotrexate degrading activity in its nanoform compare to the native enzyme.

    PubMed

    Bayineni, Venkata Krishna; Venkatesh, Krishna; Sahu, Chandan Kumar; Kadeppagari, Ravi-Kumar

    2016-04-01

    Methotrexate degrading enzymes are required to overcome the toxicity of the methotrexate while treating the cancer. The enzyme from Variovorax paradoxus converts the methotrexate in to non toxic products. Methotrexate degrading enzyme from V. paradoxus is a dimeric protein with a molecular mass of 46 kDa and it acts on casein and gelatin. This enzyme is optimally active at pH 7.5 and 40°C and nanoparticles of this enzyme were prepared by desolvation-crosslinking method. Enzyme nanoparticles could degrade methotrexate faster than the native enzyme and they show lower Km compare to the native enzyme. Enzyme nanoparticles show better thermostability and they were stable for much longer time in the serum compare to the native enzyme. Enzyme nanoparticles show better functionality than the native enzyme while clearing the methotrexate added to the serum suggesting their advantage over the native enzyme for the therapeutic and biotechnological applications.

  7. Proteins with Novel Structure, Function and Dynamics

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Pohorille, Andrew

    2014-01-01

    Recently, a small enzyme that ligates two RNA fragments with the rate of 10(exp 6) above background was evolved in vitro (Seelig and Szostak, Nature 448:828-831, 2007). This enzyme does not resemble any contemporary protein (Chao et al., Nature Chem. Biol. 9:81-83, 2013). It consists of a dynamic, catalytic loop, a small, rigid core containing two zinc ions coordinated by neighboring amino acids, and two highly flexible tails that might be unimportant for protein function. In contrast to other proteins, this enzyme does not contain ordered secondary structure elements, such as alpha-helix or beta-sheet. The loop is kept together by just two interactions of a charged residue and a histidine with a zinc ion, which they coordinate on the opposite side of the loop. Such structure appears to be very fragile. Surprisingly, computer simulations indicate otherwise. As the coordinating, charged residue is mutated to alanine, another, nearby charged residue takes its place, thus keeping the structure nearly intact. If this residue is also substituted by alanine a salt bridge involving two other, charged residues on the opposite sides of the loop keeps the loop in place. These adjustments are facilitated by high flexibility of the protein. Computational predictions have been confirmed experimentally, as both mutants retain full activity and overall structure. These results challenge our notions about what is required for protein activity and about the relationship between protein dynamics, stability and robustness. We hypothesize that small, highly dynamic proteins could be both active and fault tolerant in ways that many other proteins are not, i.e. they can adjust to retain their structure and activity even if subjected to mutations in structurally critical regions. This opens the doors for designing proteins with novel functions, structures and dynamics that have not been yet considered.

  8. Characterization of DNA binding and pairing activities associated with the native SFPQ·NONO DNA repair protein complex.

    PubMed

    Udayakumar, Durga; Dynan, William S

    2015-08-07

    Nonhomologous end joining (NHEJ) is a major pathway for repair of DNA double-strand breaks. We have previously shown that a complex of SFPQ (PSF) and NONO (p54(nrb)) cooperates with Ku protein at an early step of NHEJ, forming a committed preligation complex and stimulating end-joining activity by 10-fold or more. SFPQ and NONO show no resemblance to other repair factors, and their mechanism of action is uncertain. Here, we use an optimized microwell-based assay to characterize the in vitro DNA binding behavior of the native SFPQ·NONO complex purified from human (HeLa) cells. SFPQ·NONO and Ku protein bind independently to DNA, with little evidence of cooperativity and only slight mutual interference at high concentration. Whereas Ku protein requires free DNA ends for binding, SFPQ·NONO does not. Both Ku and SFPQ·NONO have pairing activity, as measured by the ability of DNA-bound protein to capture a second DNA fragment in a microwell-based assay. Additionally, SFPQ·NONO stimulates DNA-dependent protein kinase autophosphorylation, consistent with the ability to promote formation of a synaptic complex formation without occluding the DNA termini proper. These findings suggest that SFPQ·NONO promotes end joining by binding to internal DNA sequences and cooperating with other repair proteins to stabilize a synaptic pre-ligation complex.

  9. Conferring biological activity to native spider silk: A biofunctionalized protein-based microfiber.

    PubMed

    Wu, Hsuan-Chen; Quan, David N; Tsao, Chen-Yu; Liu, Yi; Terrell, Jessica L; Luo, Xiaolong; Yang, Jen-Chang; Payne, Gregory F; Bentley, William E

    2017-01-01

    Spider silk is an extraordinary material with physical properties comparable to the best scaffolding/structural materials, and as a fiber it can be manipulated with ease into a variety of configurations. Our work here demonstrates that natural spider silk fibers can also be used to organize biological components on and in devices through rapid and simple means. Micron scale spider silk fibers (5-10 μm in diameter) were surface modified with a variety of biological entities engineered with pentaglutamine tags via microbial transglutaminase (mTG). Enzymes, enzyme pathways, antibodies, and fluorescent proteins were all assembled onto spider silk fibers using this biomolecular engineering/biofabrication process. Additionally, arrangement of biofunctionalized fiber should in of itself generate a secondary level of biomolecular organization. Toward this end, as proofs of principle, spatially defined arrangement of biofunctionalized spider silk fiber was shown to generate effects specific to silk position in two cases. In one instance, arrangement perpendicular to a flow produced selective head and neck carcinoma cell capture on silk with antibodies complexed to conjugated protein G. In a second scenario, asymmetric bacterial chemotaxis arose from asymmetric conjugation of enzymes to arranged silk. Overall, the biofabrication processes used here were rapid, required no complex chemistries, were biologically benign, and also the resulting engineered silk microfibers were flexible, readily manipulated and functionally active. Deployed here in microfluidic environments, biofunctional spider silk fiber provides a means to convey complex biological functions over a range of scales, further extending its potential as a biomaterial in biotechnological settings. Biotechnol. Bioeng. 2017;114: 83-95. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  10. 3D protein structure prediction using Imperialist Competitive algorithm and half sphere exposure prediction.

    PubMed

    Khaji, Erfan; Karami, Masoumeh; Garkani-Nejad, Zahra

    2016-02-21

    Predicting the native structure of proteins based on half-sphere exposure and contact numbers has been studied deeply within recent years. Online predictors of these vectors and secondary structures of amino acids sequences have made it possible to design a function for the folding process. By choosing variant structures and directs for each secondary structure, a random conformation can be generated, and a potential function can then be assigned. Minimizing the potential function utilizing meta-heuristic algorithms is the final step of finding the native structure of a given amino acid sequence. In this work, Imperialist Competitive algorithm was used in order to accelerate the process of minimization. Moreover, we applied an adaptive procedure to apply revolutionary changes. Finally, we considered a more accurate tool for prediction of secondary structure. The results of the computational experiments on standard benchmark show the superiority of the new algorithm over the previous methods with similar potential function.

  11. Using Dali for structural comparison of proteins.

    PubMed

    Holm, Liisa; Kääriäinen, Sakari; Wilton, Chris; Plewczynski, Dariusz

    2006-07-01

    The Dali program is widely used for carrying out automatic comparisons of protein structures determined by X-ray crystallography or NMR. The most familiar version is the Dali server, which performs a database search comparing a query structure supplied by the user against the database of known structures (PDB) and returns the list of structural neighbors by e-mail. The more recently introduced DaliLite server compares two structures against each other and visualizes the result interactively. The Dali database is a structural classification based on precomputed all-against-all structural similarities within the PDB. The resulting hierarchical classification can be browsed on the Web and is linked to protein sequence classification resources. All Dali resources use an identical algorithm for structure comparison. Users may run Dali using the Web, or the program may be downloaded to be run locally on Linux computers.

  12. Contemporary Methodology for Protein Structure Determination.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hunkapiller, Michael W.; And Others

    1984-01-01

    Describes the nature and capabilities of methods used to characterize protein and peptide structure, indicating that they have undergone changes which have improved the speed, reliability, and applicability of the process. Also indicates that high-performance liquid chromatography and gel electrophoresis have made purifying proteins and peptides a…

  13. PEGylated nanoparticles: protein corona and secondary structure

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Runa, Sabiha; Hill, Alexandra; Cochran, Victoria L.; Payne, Christine K.

    2014-09-01

    Nanoparticles have important biological and biomedical applications ranging from drug and gene delivery to biosensing. In the presence of extracellular proteins, a "corona" of proteins adsorbs on the surface of the nanoparticles, altering their interaction with cells, including immune cells. Nanoparticles are often functionalized with polyethylene glycol (PEG) to reduce this non-specific adsorption of proteins. To understand the change in protein corona that occurs following PEGylation, we first quantified the adsorption of blood serum proteins on bare and PEGylated gold nanoparticles using gel electrophoresis. We find a threefold decrease in the amount of protein adsorbed on PEGylated gold nanoparticles compared to the bare gold nanoparticles, showing that PEG reduces, but does not prevent, corona formation. To determine if the secondary structure of corona proteins was altered upon adsorption onto the bare and PEGylated gold nanoparticles, we use CD spectroscopy to characterize the secondary structure of bovine serum albumin following incubation with the nanoparticles. Our results show no significant change in protein secondary structure following incubation with bare or PEGylated nanoparticles. Further examination of the secondary structure of bovine serum albumin, α2-macroglobulin, and transferrin in the presence of free PEG showed similar results. These findings provide important insights for the use of PEGylated gold nanoparticles under physiological conditions.

  14. 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.

  15. Increased cellular expression of matrix proteins that regulate mineralization is associated with calcification of native human and porcine xenograft bioprosthetic heart valves.

    PubMed Central

    Srivatsa, S S; Harrity, P J; Maercklein, P B; Kleppe, L; Veinot, J; Edwards, W D; Johnson, C M; Fitzpatrick, L A

    1997-01-01

    Dystrophic mineralization remains the leading cause of stenotic or regurgitant failure in native human and porcine bioprosthetic heart valves. We hypothesized that cellular expression of noncollagenous matrix proteins (osteopontin, osteocalcin, and osteonectin) that regulate skeletal mineralization may orchestrate valvular calcification. Porcine bioprosthetic heart valves and native human heart valves obtained during replacement surgery were analyzed for cells, matrix proteins that regulate mineralization, and vessels. Cell accumulation and calcification were correlated for both valve types (rho = 0.75, P = 0.01, native; rho = 0.42, P = 0.08, bioprosthetic). Osteopontin expression correlated with cell accumulation (rho = 0.58, P = 0.04) and calcification (rho = 0.52, P = 0.06) for bioprosthetic valves. Osteocalcin expression correlated with calcification (rho = 0.77, P = 0.04) and cell accumulation (rho = 0.69, P = 0.07) in native valves. Comparisons of calcified versus noncalcified native and bioprosthetic valves for averaged total matrix protein mRNA signal score revealed increased noncollagenous proteins mRNA levels in calcified valves (P = 0.07, group I vs. group II; P = 0.02, group III vs. group IV). When stratified according to positive versus negative mRNA signal status, both calcified bioprosthetic valves (P = 0.03) and calcified native valves (P = 0.01) were significantly more positive for noncollagenous proteins mRNA than their noncalcified counterparts. Local cell-associated expression of proteins regulating mineralization suggests a highly coordinated mechanism of bioprosthetic and native valve calcification analogous to physiologic bone mineralization. Modulation of cellular infiltration or cellular expression of matrix proteins that regulate mineralization, may offer an effective therapeutic approach to the prevention of valve failure secondary to calcification. PMID:9062358

  16. Human usage in the native range may determine future genetic structure of an invasion: insights from Acacia pycnantha

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background The influence of introduction history and post-introduction dynamics on genetic diversity and structure has been a major research focus in invasion biology. However, genetic diversity and structure in the invasive range can also be affected by human-mediated processes in the native range prior to species introductions, an aspect often neglected in invasion biology. Here we aim to trace the native provenance of the invasive tree Acacia pycnantha by comparing the genetic diversity and structure between populations in the native Australian range and the invasive range in South Africa. This approach also allowed us to explore how human actions altered genetic structure before and after the introduction of A. pycnantha into South Africa. We hypothesized that extensive movement and replanting in A. pycnantha’s Australian range prior to its introduction to South Africa might result in highly admixed genotypes in the introduced range, comparable genetic diversity in both ranges, and therefore preclude an accurate determination of native provenance(s) of invasive populations. Results In the native range Bayesian assignment tests identified three genetic clusters with substantial admixture and could not clearly differentiate previously identified genetic entities, corroborating admixture as a result of replantings within Australia. Assignment tests that included invasive populations from South Africa indicated similar levels of admixture compared to Australian populations and a lack of genetic structure. Invasive populations of A. pycnantha in South Africa are as genetically diverse as native populations, and could not be assigned to particular native range regions. Conclusions Our results indicate that the genetic structure of A. pycnantha in Australia has been greatly altered through various planting initiatives. Specifically, there is little geographic structure and high levels of admixture. While numerous introduction history scenarios may explain the levels

  17. A 'periodic table' for protein structures.

    PubMed

    Taylor, William R

    2002-04-11

    Current structural genomics programs aim systematically to determine the structures of all proteins coded in both human and other genomes, providing a complete picture of the number and variety of protein structures that exist. In the past, estimates have been made on the basis of the incomplete sample of structures currently known. These estimates have varied greatly (between 1,000 and 10,000; see for example refs 1 and 2), partly because of limited sample size but also owing to the difficulties of distinguishing one structure from another. This distinction is usually topological, based on the fold of the protein; however, in strict topological terms (neglecting to consider intra-chain cross-links), protein chains are open strings and hence are all identical. To avoid this trivial result, topologies are determined by considering secondary links in the form of intra-chain hydrogen bonds (secondary structure) and tertiary links formed by the packing of secondary structures. However, small additions to or loss of structure can make large changes to these perceived topologies and such subjective solutions are neither robust nor amenable to automation. Here I formalize both secondary and tertiary links to allow the rigorous and automatic definition of protein topology.

  18. Recombinant Paracoccin Reproduces the Biological Properties of the Native Protein and Induces Protective Th1 Immunity against Paracoccidioides brasiliensis Infection

    PubMed Central

    Alegre, Ana Claudia Paiva; Oliveira, Aline Ferreira; Dos Reis Almeida, Fausto Bruno; Roque-Barreira, Maria Cristina; Hanna, Ebert Seixas

    2014-01-01

    Background Paracoccin is a dual-function protein of the yeast Paracoccidioides brasiliensis that has lectin properties and N-acetylglucosaminidase activities. Proteomic analysis of a paracoccin preparation from P. brasiliensis revealed that the sequence matched that of the hypothetical protein encoded by PADG-3347 of isolate Pb-18, with a polypeptide sequence similar to the family 18 endochitinases. These endochitinases are multi-functional proteins, with distinct lectin and enzymatic domains. Methodology/principal findings The multi-exon assembly and the largest exon of the predicted ORF (PADG-3347), was cloned and expressed in Escherichia coli cells, and the features of the recombinant proteins were compared to those of the native paracoccin. The multi-exon protein was also used for protection assays in a mouse model of paracoccidioidomycosis. Conclusions/Significance Our results showed that the recombinant protein reproduced the biological properties described for the native protein—including binding to laminin in a manner that is dependent on carbohydrate recognition—showed N-acetylglucosaminidase activity, and stimulated murine peritoneal macrophages to produce high levels of TNF-α and nitric oxide. Considering the immunomodulatory potential of glycan-binding proteins, we also investigated whether prophylactic administration of recombinant paracoccin affected the course of experimental paracoccidioidomycosis in mice. In comparison to animals injected with vehicle (controls), mice treated with recombinant paracoccin displayed lower pulmonary fungal burdens and reduced pulmonary granulomas. These protective effects were associated with augmented pulmonary levels of IL-12 and IFN-γ. We also observed that injection of paracoccin three days before challenge was the most efficient administration protocol, as the induced Th1 immunity was balanced by high levels of pulmonary IL-10, which may prevent the tissue damage caused by exacerbated inflammation. The

  19. Quantitative proteomic dissection of a native 14-3-3ε interacting protein complex associated with hepatocellular carcinoma.

    PubMed

    Bai, Chen; Tang, Siwei; Bai, Chen; Chen, Xian

    2014-04-01

    The 14-3-3 proteins regulate diverse biological processes that are implicated in cancer development, and seven 14-3-3 isoforms were identified with isoform-specific roles in different human tumors. In our previous work, we dissected the interactome of 14-3-3ε formed during the DNA damage response in a hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) cell using an AACT/SILAC-based quantitative proteomic approach. In this study, we used a similar proteomic approach to profile/identify the 14-3-3ε interactome formed in native HCC cells. Functional categorization and data-dependent network analysis of the native HCC-specific 14-3-3ε interactome revealed that 14-3-3ε is involved in the regulation of multiple biological processes (BPs)/pathways, including cell cycle control, apoptosis, signal transduction, transport, cell adhesion, carbohydrate metabolism, and nucleic acid metabolism. Biological validation further supports that 14-3-3ε, via association with multiple BP/pathway-specific proteins, coordinates the regulation of proliferation, survival, and metastasis of HCC. The findings in this study, together with those of our previous study, provide an extensive profile of the 14-3-3ε interaction network in HCC cells, which should be valuable for understanding the pathology of HCC and HCC therapy.

  20. The activity of protein phosphatase 5 towards native clients is modulated by the middle- and C-terminal domains of Hsp90

    PubMed Central

    Haslbeck, Veronika; Eckl, Julia M.; Drazic, Adrian; Rutz, Daniel A.; Lorenz, Oliver R.; Zimmermann, Kerstin; Kriehuber, Thomas; Lindemann, Claudia; Madl, Tobias; Richter, Klaus

    2015-01-01

    Protein phosphatase 5 is involved in the regulation of kinases and transcription factors. The dephosphorylation activity is modulated by the molecular chaperone Hsp90, which binds to the TPR-domain of protein phosphatase 5. This interaction is dependent on the C-terminal MEEVD motif of Hsp90. We show that C-terminal Hsp90 fragments differ in their regulation of the phosphatase activity hinting to a more complex interaction. Also hydrodynamic parameters from analytical ultracentrifugation and small-angle X-ray scattering data suggest a compact structure for the Hsp90-protein phosphatase 5 complexes. Using crosslinking experiments coupled with mass spectrometric analysis and structural modelling we identify sites, which link the middle/C-terminal domain interface of C. elegans Hsp90 to the phosphatase domain of the corresponding kinase. Studying the relevance of the domains of Hsp90 for turnover of native substrates we find that ternary complexes with the glucocorticoid receptor (GR) are cooperatively formed by full-length Hsp90 and PPH-5. Our data suggest that the direct stimulation of the phosphatase activity by C-terminal Hsp90 fragments leads to increased dephosphorylation rates. These are further modulated by the binding of clients to the N-terminal and middle domain of Hsp90 and their presentation to the phosphatase within the phosphatase-Hsp90 complex. PMID:26593036

  1. Protein GB1 Folding and Assembly from Structural Elements

    PubMed Central

    Bauer, Mikael C.; Xue, Wei-Feng; Linse, Sara

    2009-01-01

    Folding of the Protein G B1 domain (PGB1) shifts with increasing salt concentration from a cooperative assembly of inherently unstructured subdomains to an assembly of partly pre-folded structures. The salt-dependence of pre-folding contributes to the stability minimum observed at physiological salt conditions. Our conclusions are based on a study in which the reconstitution of PGB1 from two fragments was studied as a function of salt concentrations and temperature using circular dichroism spectroscopy. Salt was found to induce an increase in β-hairpin structure for the C-terminal fragment (residues 41 – 56), whereas no major salt effect on structure was observed for the isolated N-terminal fragment (residues 1 – 41). In line with the increasing evidence on the interrelation between fragment complementation and stability of the corresponding intact protein, we also find that salt effects on reconstitution can be predicted from salt dependence of the stability of the intact protein. Our data show that our variant (which has the mutations T2Q, N8D, N37D and reconstitutes in a manner similar to the wild type) displays the lowest equilibrium association constant around physiological salt concentration, with higher affinity observed both at lower and higher salt concentration. This corroborates the salt effects on the stability towards denaturation of the intact protein, for which the stability at physiological salt is lower compared to both lower and higher salt concentrations. Hence we conclude that reconstitution reports on molecular factors that govern the native states of proteins. PMID:19468325

  2. Trehalulose synthase native and carbohydrate complexed structures provide insights into sucrose isomerization.

    PubMed

    Ravaud, Stéphanie; Robert, Xavier; Watzlawick, Hildegard; Haser, Richard; Mattes, Ralf; Aghajari, Nushin

    2007-09-21

    Various diseases related to the overconsumption of sugar make a growing need for sugar substitutes. Because sucrose is an inexpensive and readily available d-glucose donor, the industrial potential for enzymatic synthesis of the sucrose isomers trehalulose and/or isomaltulose from sucrose is large. The product specificity of sucrose isomerases that catalyze this reaction depends essentially on the possibility for tautomerization of sucrose, which is required for trehalulose formation. For optimal use of the enzyme, targeting controlled synthesis of these functional isomers, it is necessary to minimize the side reactions. This requires an extensive analysis of substrate binding modes and of the specificity-determining sites in the structure. The 1.6-2.2-A resolution three-dimensional structures of native and mutant complexes of a trehalulose synthase from Pseudomonas mesoacidophila MX-45 mimic successive states of the enzyme reaction. Combined with mutagenesis studies they give for the first time thorough insights into substrate recognition and processing and reaction specificities of these enzymes. Among the important outcomes of this study is the revelation of an aromatic clamp defined by Phe(256) and Phe(280) playing an essential role in substrate recognition and in controlling the reaction specificity, which is further supported by mutagenesis studies. Furthermore, this study highlights essential residues for binding the glucosyl and fructosyl moieties. The introduction of subtle changes informed by comparative three-dimensional structural data observed within our study can lead to fundamental modifications in the mode of action of sucrose isomerases and hence provide a template for industrial catalysts.

  3. PSIST: indexing protein structures using suffix trees.

    PubMed

    Gao, Feng; Zaki, Mohammed J

    2005-01-01

    Approaches for indexing proteins, and for fast and scalable searching for structures similar to a query structure have important applications such as protein structure and function prediction, protein classification and drug discovery. In this paper, we developed a new method for extracting the local feature vectors of protein structures. Each residue is represented by a triangle, and the correlation between a set of residues is described by the distances between Calpha atoms and the angles between the normals of planes in which the triangles lie. The normalized local feature vectors are indexed using a suffix tree. For all query segments, suffix trees can be used effectively to retrieve the maximal matches, which are then chained to obtain alignments with database proteins. Similar proteins are selected by their alignment score against the query. Our results shows classification accuracy up to 97.8% and 99.4% at the superfamily and class level according to the SCOP classification, and shows that on average 7.49 out of 10 proteins from the same superfamily are obtained among the top 10 matches. These results are competitive with the best previous methods.

  4. Indexing protein structures using suffix trees.

    PubMed

    Gao, Feng; Zaki, Mohammed J

    2008-01-01

    Approaches for indexing proteins and fast and scalable searching for structures similar to a query structure have important applications such as protein structure and function prediction, protein classification and drug discovery. In this chapter, we describe a new method for extracting the local feature vectors of protein structures. Each residue is represented by a triangle, and the correlation between a set of residues is described by the distances between Calpha atoms and the angles between the normals of planes in which the triangles lie. The normalized local feature vectors are indexed using a suffix tree. For all query segments, suffix trees can be used effectively to retrieve the maximal matches, which are then chained to obtain alignments with database proteins. Similar proteins are selected by their alignment score against the query. Our results show classification accuracy up to 97.8 and 99.4% at the superfamily and class level according to the SCOP classification and show that on average 7.49 out of 10 proteins from the same superfamily are obtained among the top 10 matches. These results outperform the best previous methods.

  5. Energy landscape analysis of native folding of the prion protein yields the diffusion constant, transition path time, and rates.

    PubMed

    Yu, Hao; Gupta, Amar Nath; Liu, Xia; Neupane, Krishna; Brigley, Angela M; Sosova, Iveta; Woodside, Michael T

    2012-09-04

    Protein folding is described conceptually in terms of diffusion over a configurational free-energy landscape, typically reduced to a one-dimensional profile along a reaction coordinate. In principle, kinetic properties can be predicted directly from the landscape profile using Kramers theory for diffusive barrier crossing, including the folding rates and the transition time for crossing the barrier. Landscape theory has been widely applied to interpret the time scales for protein conformational dynamics, but protein folding rates and transition times have not been calculated directly from experimentally measured free-energy profiles. We characterized the energy landscape for native folding of the prion protein using force spectroscopy, measuring the change in extension of a single protein molecule at high resolution as it unfolded/refolded under tension. Key parameters describing the landscape profile were first recovered from the distributions of unfolding and refolding forces, allowing the diffusion constant for barrier crossing and the transition path time across the barrier to be calculated. The full landscape profile was then reconstructed from force-extension curves, revealing a double-well potential with an extended, partially unfolded transition state. The barrier height and position were consistent with the previous results. Finally, Kramers theory was used to predict the folding rates from the landscape profile, recovering the values observed experimentally both under tension and at zero force in ensemble experiments. These results demonstrate how advances in single-molecule theory and experiment are harnessing the power of landscape formalisms to describe quantitatively the mechanics of folding.

  6. Sieve element occlusion (SEO) genes encode structural phloem proteins involved in wound sealing of the phloem.

    PubMed

    Ernst, Antonia M; Jekat, Stephan B; Zielonka, Sascia; Müller, Boje; Neumann, Ulla; Rüping, Boris; Twyman, Richard M; Krzyzanek, Vladislav; Prüfer, Dirk; Noll, Gundula A

    2012-07-10

    The sieve element occlusion (SEO) gene family originally was delimited to genes encoding structural components of forisomes, which are specialized crystalloid phloem proteins found solely in the Fabaceae. More recently, SEO genes discovered in various non-Fabaceae plants were proposed to encode the common phloem proteins (P-proteins) that plug sieve plates after wounding. We carried out a comprehensive characterization of two tobacco (Nicotiana tabacum) SEO genes (NtSEO). Reporter genes controlled by the NtSEO promoters were expressed specifically in immature sieve elements, and GFP-SEO fusion proteins formed parietal agglomerates in intact sieve elements as well as sieve plate plugs after wounding. NtSEO proteins with and without fluorescent protein tags formed agglomerates similar in structure to native P-protein bodies when transiently coexpressed in Nicotiana benthamiana, and the analysis of these protein complexes by electron microscopy revealed ultrastructural features resembling those of native P-proteins. NtSEO-RNA interference lines were essentially devoid of P-protein structures and lost photoassimilates more rapidly after injury than control plants, thus confirming the role of P-proteins in sieve tube sealing. We therefore provide direct evidence that SEO genes in tobacco encode P-protein subunits that affect translocation. We also found that peptides recently identified in fascicular phloem P-protein plugs from squash (Cucurbita maxima) represent cucurbit members of the SEO family. Our results therefore suggest a common evolutionary origin for P-proteins found in the sieve elements of all dicotyledonous plants and demonstrate the exceptional status of extrafascicular P-proteins in cucurbits.

  7. Chemical crosslinking and mass spectrometry studies of the structure and dynamics of membrane proteins and receptors.

    SciTech Connect

    Haskins, William E.; Leavell, Michael D.; Lane, Pamela; Jacobsen, Richard B.; Hong, Joohee; Ayson, Marites J.; Wood, Nichole L.; Schoeniger, Joseph S.; Kruppa, Gary Hermann; Sale, Kenneth L.; Young, Malin M.; Novak, Petr

    2005-03-01

    Membrane proteins make up a diverse and important subset of proteins for which structural information is limited. In this study, chemical cross-linking and mass spectrometry were used to explore the structure of the G-protein-coupled photoreceptor bovine rhodopsin in the dark-state conformation. All experiments were performed in rod outer segment membranes using amino acid 'handles' in the native protein sequence and thus minimizing perturbations to the native protein structure. Cysteine and lysine residues were covalently cross-linked using commercially available reagents with a range of linker arm lengths. Following chemical digestion of cross-linked protein, cross-linked peptides were identified by accurate mass measurement using liquid chromatography-fourier transform mass spectrometry and an automated data analysis pipeline. Assignments were confirmed and, if necessary, resolved, by tandem MS. The relative reactivity of lysine residues participating in cross-links was evaluated by labeling with NHS-esters. A distinct pattern of cross-link formation within the C-terminal domain, and between loop I and the C-terminal domain, emerged. Theoretical distances based on cross-linking were compared to inter-atomic distances determined from the energy-minimized X-ray crystal structure and Monte Carlo conformational search procedures. In general, the observed cross-links can be explained by re-positioning participating side-chains without significantly altering backbone structure. One exception, between C3 16 and K325, requires backbone motion to bring the reactive atoms into sufficient proximity for cross-linking. Evidence from other studies suggests that residues around K325 for a region of high backbone mobility. These findings show that cross-linking studies can provide insight into the structural dynamics of membrane proteins in their native environment.

  8. Specific proteolysis of native alanine racemases from Salmonella typhimurium: identification of the cleavage site and characterization of the clipped two-domain proteins

    SciTech Connect

    Galakatos, N.G.; Walsh, C.T.

    1987-12-15

    Native DadB and Alr alanine racemases (M/sub r/ 39,000) from Salmonella typhimurium are proteolyzed at homologous positions by ..cap alpha..-chymotrypsin, trypsin, and subtilisin to generate in all cases two nonoverlapping polypeptides of M/sub r/ 28,000 and 11,000. Under nondenaturing conditions, chymotryptic digest results in an associated form of the two fragments which possesses 3% of the original catalytic activity, incorporates 0.76 equiv of the mechanism-based inactivator ..beta..-chloro-(/sup 14/C)-D-alanine, and exhibits a UV circular dichroism profile identical with that of native enzyme. Protein sequence analysis of the denatured chymotryptic fragments indicates the presence of a tetrapeptide interdomain hinge (DadB, residues 254-257; Alr, residues 256-259) that is attacked at both ends during proteolysis. Under the previously employed digest conditions, NaB/sup 3/H/sub 4/-reduced DadB holoenzyme is resistant to ..cap alpha..-chymotrypsin and trypsin and is labile only toward subtilisin. These data suggest that the hinge structure is essential for a catalytically efficient enzyme species and is sensitive to active site geometry. The sequence at the hinge region is also conserved in alanine racemases from Gram-positive bacteria.

  9. Structure Refinement of Protein Low Resolution Models Using the GNEIMO Constrained Dynamics Method

    PubMed Central

    Park, In-Hee; Gangupomu, Vamshi; Wagner, Jeffrey; Jain, Abhinandan; Vaidehi, Nagara-jan

    2012-01-01

    The challenge in protein structure prediction using homology modeling is the lack of reliable methods to refine the low resolution homology models. Unconstrained all-atom molecular dynamics (MD) does not serve well for structure refinement due to its limited conformational search. We have developed and tested the constrained MD method, based on the Generalized Newton-Euler Inverse Mass Operator (GNEIMO) algorithm for protein structure refinement. In this method, the high-frequency degrees of freedom are replaced with hard holonomic constraints and a protein is modeled as a collection of rigid body clusters connected by flexible torsional hinges. This allows larger integration time steps and enhances the conformational search space. In this work, we have demonstrated the use of a constraint free GNEIMO method for protein structure refinement that starts from low-resolution decoy sets derived from homology methods. In the eight proteins with three decoys for each, we observed an improvement of ~2 Å in the RMSD to the known experimental structures of these proteins. The GNEIMO method also showed enrichment in the population density of native-like conformations. In addition, we demonstrated structural refinement using a “Freeze and Thaw” clustering scheme with the GNEIMO framework as a viable tool for enhancing localized conformational search. We have derived a robust protocol based on the GNEIMO replica exchange method for protein structure refinement that can be readily extended to other proteins and possibly applicable for high throughput protein structure refinement. PMID:22260550

  10. Genetic diversity and population structure of native maize populations in Latin America and the Caribbean.

    PubMed

    Bedoya, Claudia A; Dreisigacker, Susanne; Hearne, Sarah; Franco, Jorge; Mir, Celine; Prasanna, Boddupalli M; Taba, Suketoshi; Charcosset, Alain; Warburton, Marilyn L

    2017-01-01

    This study describes the genetic diversity and population structure of 194 native maize populations from 23 countries of Latin America and the Caribbean. The germplasm, representing 131 distinct landraces, was genetically characterized as population bulks using 28 SSR markers. Three main groups of maize germplasm were identified. The first, the Mexico and Southern Andes group, highlights the Pre-Columbian and modern exchange of germplasm between North and South America. The second group, Mesoamerica lowland, supports the hypothesis that two separate human migration events could have contributed to Caribbean maize germplasm. The third, the Andean group, displayed early introduction of maize into the Andes, with little mixing since then, other than a regional interchange zone active in the past. Events and activities in the pre- and post-Columbian Americas including the development and expansion of pre-Columbian cultures and the arrival of Europeans to the Americas are discussed in relation to the history of maize migration from its point of domestication in Mesoamerica to South America and the Caribbean through sea and land routes.

  11. Analysis of the oligomeric structure of the motor protein prestin.

    PubMed

    Zheng, Jing; Du, Guo-Guang; Anderson, Charles T; Keller, Jacob P; Orem, Alex; Dallos, Peter; Cheatham, MaryAnn

    2006-07-21

    Prestin, a member of the solute carrier family 26, is expressed in the basolateral membrane of outer hair cells. This protein provides the molecular basis for outer hair cell somatic electromotility, which is crucial for the frequency selectivity and sensitivity of mammalian hearing. It has long been known that there are abundantly expressed approximately 11-nM protein particles present in the basolateral membrane. These particles were hypothesized to be the motor proteins that drive electromotility. Because the calculated size of a prestin monomer is too small to form an approximately 11-nM particle, the possibility of prestin oligomerization was examined. We investigated possible quaternary structures of prestin by lithium dodecyl sulfate-PAGE, perfluoro-octanoate-PAGE, a membrane-based yeast two-hybrid system, and chemical cross-linking experiments. Prestin, obtained from different host or native cells, is resistant to dissociation by lithium dodecyl sulfate and behaves as a stable oligomer on lithium dodecyl sulfate-PAGE. In the membrane-based yeast two-hybrid system, homo-oligomeric interactions between prestin-bait/prestin-prey suggest that prestin molecules can associate with each other. Chemical cross-linking experiments, perfluoro-octanoate-PAGE/Western blot, and affinity purification experiments all indicate that prestin exists as a higher order oligomer, such as a tetramer, in prestin-expressing yeast, mammalian cell lines and native outer hair cells. Our data from experiments using hydrophobic and hydrophilic reducing reagents suggest that the prestin dimer is connected by a disulfide bond embedded in the prestin hydrophobic core. This stable dimer may act as the building block for producing the higher order oligomers that form the approximately 11-nM particles in the outer hair cell's basolateral membrane.

  12. A Software Pipeline for Protein Structure Prediction

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2006-11-01

    programs, such as GenTHREADER (Jones 1999), FUGUE (Shi, Blundell et al. 2001), and 3D- PSSM (Kelley, MacCallum et al. 2000), use hybrid approaches...annotation using structural profiles in the program 3D- PSSM , J Mol Biol, 299, 499- 520. Kim, D., D. Xu, et al., 2003: PROSPECT II: protein structure

  13. Protein folding: When ribosomes pick the structure

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sivertsson, Elin M.; Itzhaki, Laura S.

    2014-05-01

    Anfinsen's principle tells us that the folded structure of a protein is determined solely by its sequence. Now, it has been shown that the rate at which a polypeptide chain is synthesized in the cell can affect which of two alternative folded structures it adopts.

  14. SCRATCH: a protein structure and structural feature prediction server

    PubMed Central

    Cheng, J.; Randall, A. Z.; Sweredoski, M. J.; Baldi, P.

    2005-01-01

    SCRATCH is a server for predicting protein tertiary structure and structural features. The SCRATCH software suite includes predictors for secondary structure, relative solvent accessibility, disordered regions, domains, disulfide bridges, single mutation stability, residue contacts versus average, individual residue contacts and tertiary structure. The user simply provides an amino acid sequence and selects the desired predictions, then submits to the server. Results are emailed to the user. The server is available at . PMID:15980571

  15. ESR and X-ray Structure Investigations on the Binding and Mechanism of Inhibition of the Native State of Myeloperoxidase with Low Molecular Weight Fragments

    SciTech Connect

    Chavali, Balagopalakrishna; Masquelin, Thierry; Nilges, Mark J.; Timm, David E.; Stout, Stephanie L.; Matter, William F.; Jin, Najia; Jadhav, Prabhakar K.; Deng, Gary G.

    2015-05-19

    As an early visitor to the injured loci, neutrophil-derived human Myeloperoxidase (hMPO) offers an attractive protein target to modulate the inflammation of the host tissue through suitable inhibitors. We describe a novel methodology of using low temperature ESR spectroscopy (6 K) and FAST™ technology to screen a diverse series of small molecules that inhibit the peroxidase function through reversible binding to the native state of MPO. Also, our initial efforts to profile molecules on the inhibition of MPO-initiated nitration of the Apo-A1 peptide (AEYHAKATEHL) assay showed several potent (with sub-micro molar IC50s) but spurious inhibitors that either do not bind to the heme pocket in the enzyme or retain high (>50 %) anti oxidant potential. Such molecules when taken forward for X-ray did not yield inhibitor-bound co-crystals. We then used ESR to confirm direct binding to the native state enzyme, by measuring the binding-induced shift in the electronic parameter g to rank order the molecules. Molecules with a higher rank order—those with g-shift Rrelative ≥15—yielded well-formed protein-bound crystals (n = 33 structures). The co-crystal structure with the LSN217331 inhibitor reveals that the chlorophenyl group projects away from the heme along the edges of the Phe366 and Phe407 side chain phenyl rings thereby sterically restricting the access to the heme by the substrates like H2O2. Both ESR and antioxidant screens were used to derive the mechanism of action (reversibility, competitive substrate inhibition, and percent antioxidant potential). In conclusion, our results point to a viable path forward to target the native state of MPO to tame local inflammation.

  16. ESR and X-ray Structure Investigations on the Binding and Mechanism of Inhibition of the Native State of Myeloperoxidase with Low Molecular Weight Fragments

    DOE PAGES

    Chavali, Balagopalakrishna; Masquelin, Thierry; Nilges, Mark J.; ...

    2015-05-19

    As an early visitor to the injured loci, neutrophil-derived human Myeloperoxidase (hMPO) offers an attractive protein target to modulate the inflammation of the host tissue through suitable inhibitors. We describe a novel methodology of using low temperature ESR spectroscopy (6 K) and FAST™ technology to screen a diverse series of small molecules that inhibit the peroxidase function through reversible binding to the native state of MPO. Also, our initial efforts to profile molecules on the inhibition of MPO-initiated nitration of the Apo-A1 peptide (AEYHAKATEHL) assay showed several potent (with sub-micro molar IC50s) but spurious inhibitors that either do not bindmore » to the heme pocket in the enzyme or retain high (>50 %) anti oxidant potential. Such molecules when taken forward for X-ray did not yield inhibitor-bound co-crystals. We then used ESR to confirm direct binding to the native state enzyme, by measuring the binding-induced shift in the electronic parameter g to rank order the molecules. Molecules with a higher rank order—those with g-shift Rrelative ≥15—yielded well-formed protein-bound crystals (n = 33 structures). The co-crystal structure with the LSN217331 inhibitor reveals that the chlorophenyl group projects away from the heme along the edges of the Phe366 and Phe407 side chain phenyl rings thereby sterically restricting the access to the heme by the substrates like H2O2. Both ESR and antioxidant screens were used to derive the mechanism of action (reversibility, competitive substrate inhibition, and percent antioxidant potential). In conclusion, our results point to a viable path forward to target the native state of MPO to tame local inflammation.« less

  17. Antigenicity in sheep of synthetic peptides derived from stress-regulated Mycobacterium avium subsp. paratuberculosis proteins and comparison with recombinant protein and complex native antigens.

    PubMed

    Gurung, Ratna B; Begg, Douglas J; Purdie, Auriol C; Whittington, Richard J

    2014-03-15

    Serum antibody enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay is the most commonly used test for diagnosis of Mycobacterium avium subsp. paratuberculosis infection in ruminants. However, the assay requires serum preabsorption with Mycobacterium phlei proteins to reduce cross reactions potentially contributed by the exposure of livestock to environmental mycobacteria. To trial the discovery of novel antigens which do not require serum absorption, synthetic MAP-specific peptides were selected based on in silico research to identify putative B cell epitopes. Four peptides from previously identified stress-regulated proteins were synthesized and evaluated using enzyme linked immunosorbent assay to detect Mycobacterium avium subsp. paratuberculosis specific antibodies in sheep. Two peptides were from hypothetical MAP proteins (MAP3567 and MAP1168c) and two were from proteins with known function (MAP2698c, an acyl-acyl carrier protein desaturase-DesA2 and MAP2487c a carbonic anhydrase). The ability of each peptide to discriminate between unexposed and MAP exposed (infected and vaccinated) animals was similar to that of the parent recombinant MAP antigen, with area under receiver operating curve values of 0.86-0.93. Assays run with a combination of two peptides showed slightly higher reactivity than those of individual peptides. Peptides evaluated in this study had diagnostic potential similar to corresponding recombinant proteins but not superior to a complex native MAP antigen or a commercial assay. Further study is required to investigate other peptides for their diagnostic potential, and this may be simpler and cheaper than subunit protein-based research.

  18. Crystal structures of human 3-hydroxyanthranilate 3,4-dioxygenase with native and non-native metals bound in the active site.

    PubMed

    Pidugu, Lakshmi Swarna Mukhi; Neu, Heather; Wong, Tin Lok; Pozharski, Edwin; Molloy, John L; Michel, Sarah L J; Toth, Eric A

    2017-04-01

    3-Hydroxyanthranilate 3,4-dioxygenase (3HAO) is an enzyme in the microglial branch of the kynurenine pathway of tryptophan degradation. 3HAO is a non-heme iron-containing, ring-cleaving extradiol dioxygenase that catalyzes the addition of both atoms of O2 to the kynurenine pathway metabolite 3-hydroxyanthranilic acid (3-HANA) to form quinolinic acid (QUIN). QUIN is a highly potent excitotoxin that has been implicated in a number of neurodegenerative conditions, making 3HAO a target for pharmacological downregulation. Here, the first crystal structure of human 3HAO with the native iron bound in its active site is presented, together with an additional structure with zinc (a known inhibitor of human 3HAO) bound in the active site. The metal-binding environment is examined both structurally and via inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (ICP-MS), X-ray fluorescence spectroscopy (XRF) and electron paramagnetic resonance spectroscopy (EPR). The studies identified Met35 as the source of potential new interactions with substrates and inhibitors, which may prove useful in future therapeutic efforts.

  19. Structural characterization of the photoswitchable fluorescent protein Dronpa-C62S

    SciTech Connect

    Nam, Ki-Hyun; Kwon, Oh Yeun; Sugiyama, Kanako; Lee, Won-Ho; Kim, Young Kwan; Song, Hyun Kyu; Kim, Eunice Eunkyung; Park, Sam-Yong; Jeon, Hyesung . E-mail: hjeon@kist.re.kr; Hwang, Kwang Yeon . E-mail: chahong@korea.ac.kr

    2007-03-23

    The photoswitching behavior of green fluorescent proteins (GFPs) or GFP-like proteins is increasingly recognized as a new technique for optical marking. Recently, Ando and his colleagues developed a new green fluorescent protein Dronpa, which possesses the unique photochromic property of being photoswitchable in a non-destructive manner. To better understand this mechanism, we determined the crystal structures of a new GFP Dronpa and its mutant C62S, at 1.9 A and 1.8 A, respectively. Determination of the structures demonstrates that a unique hydrogen-bonding network and the sulfur atom of the chromophore are critical to the photoswitching property of Dronpa. Reversible photoswitching was lost in cells expressing the Dronpa-C62S upon repetitive irradiation compared to the native protein. Structural and mutational analyses reveal the chemical basis for the functional properties of photoswitchable fluorescent proteins and provide the basis for subsequent coherent engineering of this subfamily of Dronpa homolog's.

  20. An All-Atom Force Field for Tertiary Structure Prediction of Helical Proteins

    PubMed Central

    Herges, T.; Wenzel, W.

    2004-01-01

    We have developed an all-atom free-energy force field (PFF01) for protein tertiary structure prediction. PFF01 is based on physical interactions and was parameterized using experimental structures of a family of proteins believed to span a wide variety of possible folds. It contains empirical, although sequence-independent terms for hydrogen bonding. Its solvent-accessible surface area solvent model was first fit to transfer energies of small peptides. The parameters of the solvent model were then further optimized to stabilize the native structure of a single protein, the autonomously folding villin headpiece, against competing low-energy decoys. Here we validate the force field for five nonhomologous helical proteins with 20–60 amino acids. For each protein, decoys with 2–3 Å backbone root mean-square deviation and correct experimental Cβ–Cβ distance constraints emerge as those with the lowest energy. PMID:15507688

  1. Intercellular trafficking and protein delivery by a herpesvirus structural protein.

    PubMed

    Elliott, G; O'Hare, P

    1997-01-24

    We show that the HSV-1 structural protein VP22 has the remarkable property of intercellular transport, which is so efficient that following expression in a subpopulation the protein spreads to every cell in a monolayer, where it concentrates in the nucleus and binds chromatin. VP22 movement was observed both after delivery of DNA by transfection or microinjection and during virus infection. Moreover, we demonstrate that VP22 trafficking occurs via a nonclassical Golgi-independent mechanism. Sensitivity to cytochalasin D treatment suggests that VP22 utilizes a novel trafficking pathway that involves the actin cytoskeleton. In addition, we demonstrate intercellular transport of a VP22 fusion protein after endogenous synthesis or exogenous application, indicating that VP22 may have potential in the field of protein delivery.

  2. Isotope coded protein labeling coupled immunoprecipitation (ICPL-IP): a novel approach for quantitative protein complex analysis from native tissue.

    PubMed

    Vogt, Andreas; Fuerholzner, Bettina; Kinkl, Norbert; Boldt, Karsten; Ueffing, Marius

    2013-05-01

    High confidence definition of protein interactions is an important objective toward the understanding of biological systems. Isotope labeling in combination with affinity-based isolation of protein complexes has increased in accuracy and reproducibility, yet, larger organisms--including humans--are hardly accessible to metabolic labeling and thus, a major limitation has been its restriction to small animals, cell lines, and yeast. As composition as well as the stoichiometry of protein complexes can significantly differ in primary tissues, there is a great demand for methods capable to combine the selectivity of affinity-based isolation as well as the accuracy and reproducibility of isotope-based labeling with its application toward analysis of protein interactions from intact tissue. Toward this goal, we combined isotope coded protein labeling (ICPL)(1) with immunoprecipitation (IP) and quantitative mass spectrometry (MS). ICPL-IP allows sensitive and accurate analysis of protein interactions from primary tissue. We applied ICPL-IP to immuno-isolate protein complexes from bovine retinal tissue. Protein complexes of immunoprecipitated β-tubulin, a highly abundant protein with known interactors as well as the lowly expressed small GTPase RhoA were analyzed. The results of both analyses demonstrate sensitive and selective identification of known as well as new protein interactions by our method.

  3. Structures of yeast vesicle trafficking proteins.

    PubMed Central

    Tishgarten, T.; Yin, F. F.; Faucher, K. M.; Dluhy, R. A.; Grant, T. R.; Fischer von Mollard, G.; Stevens, T. H.; Lipscomb, L. A.

    1999-01-01

    In protein transport between organelles, interactions of v- and t-SNARE proteins are required for fusion of protein-containing vesicles with appropriate target compartments. Mammalian SNARE proteins have been observed to interact with NSF and SNAP, and yeast SNAREs with yeast homologues of NSF and SNAP proteins. This observation led to the hypothesis that, despite low sequence homology, SNARE proteins are structurally similar among eukaryotes. SNARE proteins can be classified into two groups depending on whether they interact with SNARE binding partners via conserved glutamine (Q-SNAREs) or arginine (R-SNAREs). Much of the published structural data available is for SNAREs involved in exocytosis (either in yeast or synaptic vesicles). This paper describes circular dichroism, Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy, and dynamic light scattering data for a set of yeast v- and t-SNARE proteins, Vti1p and Pep12p, that are Q-SNAREs involved in intracellular trafficking. Our results suggest that the secondary structure of Vti1p is highly alpha-helical and that Vti1p forms multimers under a variety of solution conditions. In these respects, Vti1p appears to be distinct from R-SNARE proteins characterized previously. The alpha-helicity of Vti1p is similar to that of Q-SNARE proteins characterized previously. Pep12p, a Q-SNARE, is highly alpha-helical. It is distinct from other Q-SNAREs in that it forms dimers under many of the solution conditions tested in our experiments. The results presented in this paper are among the first to suggest heterogeneity in the functioning of SNARE complexes. PMID:10595551

  4. Aggregate structure, morphology and the effect of aggregation mechanisms on viscosity at elevated protein concentrations.

    PubMed

    Barnett, Gregory V; Qi, Wei; Amin, Samiul; Neil Lewis, E; Roberts, Christopher J

    2015-12-01

    Non-native aggregation is a common issue in a number of degenerative diseases and during manufacturing of protein-based therapeutics. There is a growing interest to monitor protein stability at intermediate to high protein concentrations, which are required for therapeutic dosing of subcutaneous injections. An understanding of the impact of protein structural changes and interactions on the protein aggregation mechanisms and resulting aggregate size and morphology may lead to improved strategies to reduce aggregation and solution viscosity. This report investigates non-native aggregation of a model protein, α-chymotrypsinogen, under accelerated conditions at elevated protein concentrations. Far-UV circular dichroism and Raman scattering show structural changes during aggregation. Size exclusion chromatography and laser light scattering are used to monitor the progression of aggregate growth and monomer loss. Monomer loss is concomitant with increased β-sheet structures as monomers are added to aggregates, which illustrate a transition from a native monomeric state to an aggregate state. Aggregates grow predominantly through monomer-addition, resulting in a semi-flexible polymer morphology. Analysis of aggregation growth kinetics shows that pH strongly affects the characteristic timescales for nucleation (τn) and growth (τg), while the initial protein concentration has only minor effects on τn or τg. Low-shear viscosity measurements follow a common scaling relationship between average aggregate molecular weight (Mw(agg)) and concentration (σ), which is consistent with semi-dilute polymer-solution theory. The results establish a link between aggregate growth mechanisms, which couple Mw(agg) and σ, to increases in solution viscosity even at these intermediate protein concentrations (less than 3w/v %).

  5. An assessment of the use of native and denatured forms of okra seed proteins as coagulants in drinking water treatment.

    PubMed

    Jones, Alfred Ndahi; Bridgeman, John

    2016-10-01

    The effects of temperature, storage time and water pH on the coagulation performance of okra seed protein in water treatment were assessed. In a jar test experiment, okra salt extract achieved a notable improvement in treatment efficiency with storage time and showed good performance in quality after thermal treatment at 60, 97 and 140 °C temperatures for 6, 4 and 2 hours, respectively. The performance improvement of more than 8% is considered to be due to the denaturation and subsequent removal of coagulation-hindering proteins in okra seed. Furthermore, the results of a sodium dodecyl sulphate polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis analysis show two distinctive bands of protein responsible for the coagulation process after denaturation. It was further shown that at optimal coagulant dose, the pH of the treated water remained unaffected as a result of the protein's buffering capability during coagulation. Therefore, denatured okra seed exhibited improved performance compared to the native crude extract and offers clear benefits as a water treatment coagulant.

  6. Deciphering Supramolecular Structures with Protein-Protein Interaction Network Modeling

    PubMed Central

    Tsuji, Toshiyuki; Yoda, Takao; Shirai, Tsuyoshi

    2015-01-01

    Many biological molecules are assembled into supramolecules that are essential to perform complicated functions in the cell. However, experimental information about the structures of supramolecules is not sufficient at this point. We developed a method of predicting and modeling the structures of supramolecules in a biological network by combining structural data of the Protein Data Bank (PDB) and interaction data in IntAct databases. Templates for binary complexes in IntAct were extracted from PDB. Modeling was attempted by assembling binary complexes with superposed shared subunits. A total of 3,197 models were constructed, and 1,306 (41% of the total) contained at least one subunit absent from experimental structures. The models also suggested 970 (25% of the total) experimentally undetected subunit interfaces, and 41 human disease-related amino acid variants were mapped onto these model-suggested interfaces. The models demonstrated that protein-protein interaction network modeling is useful to fill the information gap between biological networks and structures. PMID:26549015

  7. 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

  8. Structure and function of antifreeze proteins.

    PubMed Central

    Davies, Peter L; Baardsnes, Jason; Kuiper, Michael J; Walker, Virginia K

    2002-01-01

    High-resolution three-dimensional structures are now available for four of seven non-homologous fish and insect antifreeze proteins (AFPs). For each of these structures, the ice-binding site of the AFP has been defined by site-directed mutagenesis, and ice etching has indicated that the ice surface is bound by the AFP. A comparison of these extremely diverse ice-binding proteins shows that they have the following attributes in common. The binding sites are relatively flat and engage a substantial proportion of the protein's surface area in ice binding. They are also somewhat hydrophobic -- more so than that portion of the protein exposed to the solvent. Surface-surface complementarity appears to be the key to tight binding in which the contribution of hydrogen bonding seems to be secondary to van der Waals contacts. PMID:12171656

  9. Domain structure of Lassa virus L protein.

    PubMed

    Brunotte, Linda; Lelke, Michaela; Hass, Meike; Kleinsteuber, Katja; Becker-Ziaja, Beate; Günther, Stephan

    2011-01-01

    The 200-kDa L protein of arenaviruses plays a central role in viral genome replication and transcription. This study aimed at providing evidence for the domain structure of L protein by combining bioinformatics with a stepwise mutagenesis approach using the Lassa virus minireplicon system. Potential interdomain linkers were predicted using various algorithms. The prediction was challenged by insertion of flexible sequences into the predicted linkers. Insertion of 5 or 10 amino acid residues was tolerated at seven sites (S407, G446, G467, G774, G939, S1952, and V2074 in Lassa virus AV). At two of these sites, G467 and G939, L protein could be split into an N-terminal and a C-terminal part, which were able to trans-complement each other and reconstitute a functional complex upon coexpression. Coimmunoprecipitation studies revealed physical interaction between the N- and C-terminal domains, irrespective of whether L protein was split at G467 or G939. In confocal immunofluorescence microscopy, the N-terminal domains showed a dot-like, sometimes perinuclear, cytoplasmic distribution similar to that of full-length L protein, while the C-terminal domains were homogenously distributed in cytoplasm. The latter were redistributed into the dot-like structures upon coexpression with the corresponding N-terminal domain. In conclusion, this study demonstrates two interdomain linkers in Lassa virus L protein, at G467 and G939, suggesting that L protein is composed of at least three structural domains spanning residues 1 to 467, 467 to 939, and 939 to 2220. The first domain seems to mediate accumulation of L protein into cytoplasmic dot-like structures.

  10. Structure–Biological Function Relationship Extended to Mitotic Arrest-Deficient 2-Like Protein Mad2 Native and Mutants-New Opportunity for Genetic Disorder Control

    PubMed Central

    Avram, Speranta; Milac, Adina; Mernea, Maria; Mihailescu, Dan; Putz, Mihai V.; Buiu, Catalin

    2014-01-01

    Overexpression of mitotic arrest-deficient proteins Mad1 and Mad2, two components of spindle assembly checkpoint, is a risk factor for chromosomal instability (CIN) and a trigger of many genetic disorders. Mad2 transition from inactive open (O-Mad2) to active closed (C-Mad2) conformations or Mad2 binding to specific partners (cell-division cycle protein 20 (Cdc20) or Mad1) were targets of previous pharmacogenomics studies. Here, Mad2 binding to Cdc20 and the interconversion rate from open to closed Mad2 were predicted and the molecular features with a critical contribution to these processes were determined by extending the quantitative structure-activity relationship (QSAR) method to large-size proteins such as Mad2. QSAR models were built based on available published data on 23 Mad2 mutants inducing CIN-related functional changes. The most relevant descriptors identified for predicting Mad2 native and mutants action mechanism and their involvement in genetic disorders are the steric (van der Waals area and solvent accessible area and their subdivided) and energetic van der Waals energy descriptors. The reliability of our QSAR models is indicated by significant values of statistical coefficients: Cross-validated correlation q2 (0.53–0.65) and fitted correlation r2 (0.82–0.90). Moreover, based on established QSAR equations, we rationally design and analyze nine de novo Mad2 mutants as possible promoters of CIN. PMID:25411801

  11. Synthetic mimetics of protein secondary structure domains

    PubMed Central

    Ross, Nathan T.; Katt, William P.; Hamilton, Andrew D.

    2010-01-01

    Proteins modulate the majority of all biological functions and are primarily composed of highly organized secondary structural elements such as helices, turns and sheets. Many of these functions are affected by a small number of key protein–protein contacts, often involving one or more of these well-defined structural elements. Given the ubiquitous nature of these protein recognition domains, their mimicry by peptidic and non-peptidic scaffolds has become a major focus of contemporary research. This review examines several key advances in secondary structure mimicry over the past several years, particularly focusing upon scaffolds that show not only promising projection of functional groups, but also a proven effect in biological systems. PMID:20123744

  12. Structure and Function of Lipopolysaccharide Binding Protein

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schumann, Ralf R.; Leong, Steven R.; Flaggs, Gail W.; Gray, Patrick W.; Wright, Samuel D.; Mathison, John C.; Tobias, Peter S.; Ulevitch, Richard J.

    1990-09-01

    The primary structure of lipopolysaccharide binding protein (LBP), a trace plasma protein that binds to the lipid A moiety of bacterial lipopolysaccharides (LPSs), was deduced by sequencing cloned complementary DNA. LBP shares sequence identity with another LPS binding protein found in granulocytes, bactericidal/permeability-increasing protein, and with cholesterol ester transport protein of the plasma. LBP may control the response to LPS under physiologic conditions by forming high-affinity complexes with LPS that bind to monocytes and macrophages, which then secrete tumor necrosis factor. The identification of this pathway for LPS-induced monocyte stimulation may aid in the development of treatments for diseases in which Gram-negative sepsis or endotoxemia are involved.

  13. Phosphorylation, nitrosation and plasminogen K3 modulation make VDAC-1 lucid as part of the extrinsic apoptotic pathway-Resulting thesis: Native VDAC-1 indispensible for finalisation of its 3D structure.

    PubMed

    Thinnes, Friedrich P

    2015-06-01

    Native and recombinant VDAC preparations differ in their acetylation, phosphorylation and nitrosation state; additionally, proteineous modulators are missing in the latter. They thus vary in channel characteristics, as can be taken from comparative black lipid bilayer experiments. Furthermore, the multi-compartment expression makes expect even differing native VDAC-1 molecules. Recent structural work on mammalian VDAC-1 has only used recombinant material, refolded from Escherichia coli inclusion bodies. While this approach established the basic three-dimensional structure of VDAC-1, a ß-barrel set up by nineteen ß-pleated sheets, dissent is on positioning and movements of its free N-terminal helical peptide stretch preceding ß-pleated sheet-1. A synopsis of data concerning posttranslational modifications, cyto-topology and physiology of native VDAC-1, from my point of view, suggests that the finalisation of its three-dimensional structure will need native channel preparations to be studied. Concerning relevance, recent evidence on the regulation of cell membrane-integrated VDAC-1 by posttranslational modifications and proteineous modulators, taken together with experimental demonstrations that VDAC-1 is involved in cell volume regulation, it thus may be part of the extrinsic apoptotic pathway can hopefully help to understand some relevant medical syndromes, e.g. cystic fibrosis, Alzheimer's disease, autism and malaria.

  14. Protein Structure Network-based Drug Design.

    PubMed

    Liang, Zhongjie; Hu, Guang

    2016-01-01

    Although structure-based drug design (SBDD) has become an indispensable tool in drug discovery for a long time, it continues to pose major challenges to date. With the advancement of "omics" techniques, systems biology has enriched SBDD into a new era, called polypharmacology, in which multi-targets drug or drug combination is designed to fight complex diseases. As a preliminary tool in systems biology, protein structure networks (PSNs) treat a protein as a set of residues linked by edges corresponding to the intramolecular interactions existing in folded structures between the residues. The PSN offers a computationally efficient tool to study the structure and function of proteins, and thus may facilitate structurebased drug design. Herein, we provide an overview of recent advances in PSNs, from predicting functionally important residues, to charactering protein-protein interactions and allosteric communication paths. Furthermore, we discuss potential pharmacological applications of PSN concepts and tools, and highlight the application to two families of drug targets, GPCRs and Hsp90. Although the application of PSNs as a framework for computer-aided drug discovery has been limited to date, we put forward the potential utility value in the near future and propose the PSNs could also serve as a new tool for polypharmacology research.

  15. Murine T-Cell Response to Native and Recombinant Protein Antigens of Rickettsia Tsutsugamushi

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1993-02-01

    Wright, and J. Sadoff. 1985. 18-kilodalton protein of Mycobacterium leprae recognized by Immunoenzymatic analysis by monoclonal antibodies of bacte- Vo...determinants and closely resembles T-cell antigenic determinants, Rothbard and Taylor, by the GroEL homolog (65 kDa) of Mycobacterium tuberculo- analysis of...not be completely present in protein that is recognized by 20% of the mycobacterium - peptide 91-110. If this were the core of the antigenic deter

  16. Mathematics, thermodynamics, and modeling to address ten common misconceptions about protein structure, folding, and stability.

    PubMed

    Robic, Srebrenka

    2010-01-01

    To fully understand the roles proteins play in cellular processes, students need to grasp complex ideas about protein structure, folding, and stability. Our current understanding of these topics is based on mathematical models and experimental data. However, protein structure, folding, and stability are often introduced as descriptive, qualitative phenomena in undergraduate classes. In the process of learning about these topics, students often form incorrect ideas. For example, by learning about protein folding in the context of protein synthesis, students may come to an incorrect conclusion that once synthesized on the ribosome, a protein spends its entire cellular life time in its fully folded native confirmation. This is clearly not true; proteins are dynamic structures that undergo both local fluctuations and global unfolding events. To prevent and address such misconceptions, basic concepts of protein science can be introduced in the context of simple mathematical models and hands-on explorations of publicly available data sets. Ten common misconceptions about proteins are presented, along with suggestions for using equations, models, sequence, structure, and thermodynamic data to help students gain a deeper understanding of basic concepts relating to protein structure, folding, and stability.

  17. Secondary-structure analysis of denatured proteins by vacuum-ultraviolet circular dichroism spectroscopy.

    PubMed

    Matsuo, Koichi; Sakurada, Yoshie; Yonehara, Ryuta; Kataoka, Mikio; Gekko, Kunihiko

    2007-06-01

    To elucidate the structure of denatured proteins, we measured the vacuum-ultraviolet circular dichroism (VUVCD) spectra from 260 to 172 nm of three proteins (metmyoglobin, staphylococcal nuclease, and thioredoxin) in the native and the acid-, cold-, and heat-denatured states, using a synchrotron-radiation VUVCD spectrophotometer. The circular dichroism spectra of proteins fully unfolded by guanidine hydrochloride (GdnHCl) were also measured down to 197 nm for comparison. These denatured proteins exhibited characteristic VUVCD spectra that reflected a considerable amount of residual secondary structures. The contents of alpha-helices, beta-strands, turns, poly-L-proline type II (PPII), and unordered structures were estimated for each denatured state of the three proteins using the SELCON3 program with Protein Data Bank data and the VUVCD spectra of 31 reference proteins reported in our previous study. Based on these contents, the characteristics of the four types of denaturation were discussed for each protein. In all types of denaturation, a decrease in alpha-helices was accompanied by increases in beta-strands, PPII, and unordered structures. About 20% beta-strands were present even in the proteins fully unfolded by GdnHCl in which beta-sheets should be broken. From these results, we propose that denatured proteins constitute an ensemble of residual alpha-helices and beta-sheets, partly unfolded (or distorted) alpha-helices and beta-strands, PPII, and unordered structures.

  18. Developing STR databases on structured populations: the native South Siberian population versus the Russian population.

    PubMed

    Zhivotovsky, Lev A; Malyarchuk, Boris A; Derenko, Miroslava V; Wozniak, Marcin; Grzybowski, Tomasz

    2009-09-01

    Developing a forensic DNA database on a population that consists of local ethnic groups separated by physical and cultural barriers is questionable as it can be genetically subdivided. On the other side, small sizes of ethnic groups, especially in alpine regions where they are sub-structured further into small villages, prevent collecting a large sample from each ethnic group. For such situations, we suggest to obtain both a total population database on allele frequencies across ethnic groups and a list of theta-values between the groups and the total data. We have genotyped 558 individuals from the native population of South Siberia, consisting of nine ethnic groups, at 17 autosomal STR loci of the kit packages AmpFlSTR SGM Plus i, Cyrillic AmpFlSTR Profiler Plus. The groups differentiate from each other with average theta-values of around 1.1%, and some reach up to three to four percent at certain loci. There exists between-village differentiation as well. Therefore, a database for the population of South Siberia is composed of data on allele frequencies in the pool of ethnic groups and data on theta-values that indicate variation in allele frequencies across the groups. Comparison to additional data on northeastern Asia (the Chukchi and Koryak) shows that differentiation in allele frequencies among small groups that are separated by large geographic distance can be even greater. In contrast, populations of Russians that live in large cities of the European part of Russia are homogeneous in allele frequencies, despite large geographic distance between them, and thus can be described by a database on allele frequencies alone, without any specific information on theta-values.

  19. Can computationally designed protein sequences improve secondary structure prediction?

    PubMed

    Bondugula, Rajkumar; Wallqvist, Anders; Lee, Michael S

    2011-05-01

    Computational sequence design methods are used to engineer proteins with desired properties such as increased thermal stability and novel function. In addition, these algorithms can be used to identify an envelope of sequences that may be compatible with a particular protein fold topology. In this regard, we hypothesized that sequence-property prediction, specifically secondary structure, could be significantly enhanced by using a large database of computationally designed sequences. We performed a large-scale test of this hypothesis with 6511 diverse protein domains and 50 designed sequences per domain. After analysis of the inherent accuracy of the designed sequences database, we realized that it was necessary to put constraints on what fraction of the native sequence should be allowed to change. With mutational constraints, accuracy was improved vs. no constraints, but the diversity of designed sequences, and hence effective size of the database, was moderately reduced. Overall, the best three-state prediction accuracy (Q(3)) that we achieved was nearly a percentage point improved over using a natural sequence database alone, well below the theoretical possibility for improvement of 8-10 percentage points. Furthermore, our nascent method was used to augment the state-of-the-art PSIPRED program by a percentage point.

  20. Generating a battery of monoclonal antibodies against native green fluorescent protein for immunostaining, FACS, IP, and ChIP using a unique adjuvant.

    PubMed

    Sanchez, Philip; Daniels, Karla J; Park, Yang-Nim; Soll, David R

    2014-04-01

    Using a unique, nontoxic adjuvant compound of poly(I:C) and anti-CD40 MAb, a battery of eight mouse monoclonal antibodies was generated against native green fluorescent protein. All were effective to varying degrees for immunostaining paraformaldehyde-fixed cells, six for staining sections of paraffin-embedded tissue, all to varying degrees in fluorescent-activated cell sorting, five for immunoprecipitation, and seven for chromatin immunoprecipitation. None worked in denaturing Western blots since the target was the native GFP protein. Both the hybridomas and antibodies are available at cost through DSHB, a non-profit National Resource created by the National Institutes of Health.

  1. Distinguishing native conformations of proteins from decoys with an effective free energy estimator based on the OPLS all-atom force field and the Surface Generalized Born solvent model.

    PubMed

    Felts, Anthony K; Gallicchio, Emilio; Wallqvist, Anders; Levy, Ronald M

    2002-08-01

    Protein decoy data sets provide a benchmark for testing scoring functions designed for fold recognition and protein homology modeling problems. It is commonly believed that statistical potentials based on reduced atomic models are better able to discriminate native-like from misfolded decoys than scoring functions based on more detailed molecular mechanics models. Recent benchmark tests on small data sets, however, suggest otherwise. In this work, we report the results of extensive decoy detection tests using an effective free energy function based on the OPLS all-atom (OPLS-AA) force field and the Surface Generalized Born (SGB) model for the solvent electrostatic effects. The OPLS-AA/SGB effective free energy is used as a scoring function to detect native protein folds among a total of 48,832 decoys for 32 different proteins from Park and Levitt's 4-state-reduced, Levitt's local-minima, Baker's ROSETTA all-atom, and Skolnick's decoy sets. Solvent electrostatic effects are included through the Surface Generalized Born (SGB) model. All structures are locally minimized without restraints. From an analysis of the individual energy components of the OPLS-AA/SGB energy function for the native and the best-ranked decoy, it is determined that a balance of the terms of the potential is responsible for the minimized energies that most successfully distinguish the native from the misfolded conformations. Different combinations of individual energy terms provide less discrimination than the total energy. The results are consistent with observations that all-atom molecular potentials coupled with intermediate level solvent dielectric models are competitive with knowledge-based potentials for decoy detection and protein modeling problems such as fold recognition and homology modeling.

  2. Inntags: small self-structured epitopes for innocuous protein tagging.

    PubMed

    Georgieva, Maya V; Yahya, Galal; Codó, Laia; Ortiz, Raúl; Teixidó, Laura; Claros, José; Jara, Ricardo; Jara, Mònica; Iborra, Antoni; Gelpí, Josep Lluís; Gallego, Carme; Orozco, Modesto; Aldea, Martí

    2015-10-01

    Protein tagging is widely used in approaches ranging from affinity purification to fluorescence-based detection in live cells. However, an intrinsic limitation of tagging is that the native function of the protein may be compromised or even abolished by the presence of the tag. Here we describe and characterize a set of small, innocuous protein tags (inntags) that we anticipate will find application in a variety of biological techniques.

  3. Asexual endophytes and associated alkaloids alter arthropod community structure and increase herbivore abundances on a native grass.

    PubMed

    Jani, Andrea J; Faeth, Stanley H; Gardner, Dale

    2010-01-01

    Despite their minute biomass, microbial symbionts of plants potentially alter herbivory, diversity and community structure. Infection of grasses by asexual endophytic fungi often decreases herbivore loads and alters arthropod diversity. However, most studies to date have involved agronomic grasses and often consider only infection status (infected vs. uninfected), without explicitly measuring endophyte-produced alkaloids, which vary among endophyte isolates and may impact consumers. We combined field experiments and population surveys to investigate how endophyte infection and associated alkaloids influence abundances, species richness, evenness and guild structure of arthropod communities on a native grass, Achnatherum robustum (sleepygrass). Surprisingly, we found that endophyte-produced alkaloids were associated with increased herbivore abundances and species richness. Our results suggest that, unlike what has been found in agronomic grass systems, high alkaloid levels in native grasses may not protect host grasses from arthropod herbivores, and may instead more negatively affect natural enemies of herbivores.

  4. Unconstrained Structure Formation in Coarse-Grained Protein Simulations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bereau, Tristan

    The ability of proteins to fold into well-defined structures forms the basis of a wide variety of biochemical functions in and out of the cell membrane. Many of these processes, however, operate at time- and length-scales that are currently unattainable by all-atom computer simulations. To cope with this difficulty, increasingly more accurate and sophisticated coarse-grained models are currently being developed. In the present thesis, we introduce a solvent-free coarse-grained model for proteins. Proteins are modeled by four beads per amino acid, providing enough backbone resolution to allow for accurate sampling of local conformations. It relies on simple interactions that emphasize structure, such as hydrogen bonds and hydrophobicity. Realistic alpha/beta content is achieved by including an effective nearest-neighbor dipolar interaction. Parameters are tuned to reproduce both local conformations and tertiary structures. By studying both helical and extended conformations we make sure the force field is not biased towards any particular secondary structure. Without any further adjustments or bias a realistic oligopeptide aggregation scenario is observed. The model is subsequently applied to various biophysical problems: (i) kinetics of folding of two model peptides, (ii) large-scale amyloid-beta oligomerization, and (iii) protein folding cooperativity. The last topic---defined by the nature of the finite-size thermodynamic transition exhibited upon folding---was investigated from a microcanonical perspective: the accurate evaluation of the density of states can unambiguously characterize the nature of the transition, unlike its corresponding canonical analysis. Extending the results of lattice simulations and theoretical models, we find that it is the interplay between secondary structure and the loss of non-native tertiary contacts which determines the nature of the transition. Finally, we combine the peptide model with a high-resolution, solvent-free, lipid

  5. A Low-Dose Electron Diffraction Assay for Protection of Protein Structure against Damage from Drying

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Massover, William H.

    2004-04-01

    A new assay using low-dose electron diffraction to measure the protection of protein structure against damage from drying is described. When thin single crystals of catalase are dried within water alone, low-dose electron diffraction yields no Bragg spots. Drying within an experimental aqueous solution that permits detection of diffraction spots thereby indicates a positive result, and the extent of these Bragg reflections into the high angle range gives a quantitative measure of the degree of protection. Bragg spots out to 3.7 3.9 [Angstrom capital A, ring] are recorded for drying within 100 mM solutions of the known structure-preserving sugars, sucrose, tannin, and trehalose. The ability of trehalose to maintain native protein structure during drying starts between 10 and 25 mM, and changes only slightly at concentrations above this threshold; with drying in 150-mM trehalose, catalase crystals yield diffraction spots out to 3.7 [Angstrom capital A, ring]. Drying within the organic nonsugar polymer polyvinylpyrrolidone gives Bragg spots to 4.0 [Angstrom capital A, ring]. This new assay should be useful to measure the unexamined structure-preserving capabilities of modified sugars, other nonsugars, and mixtures to identify which protective matrix maintains native protein structure to the greatest extent during drying; electron crystallography using that optimal matrix should yield protein structure at improved levels of high resolution.

  6. Zinc coordination spheres in protein structures.

    PubMed

    Laitaoja, Mikko; Valjakka, Jarkko; Jänis, Janne

    2013-10-07

    Zinc metalloproteins are one of the most abundant and structurally diverse proteins in nature. In these proteins, the Zn(II) ion possesses a multifunctional role as it stabilizes the fold of small zinc fingers, catalyzes essential reactions in enzymes of all six classes, or assists in the formation of biological oligomers. Previously, a number of database surveys have been conducted on zinc proteins to gain broader insights into their rich coordination chemistry. However, many of these surveys suffer from severe flaws and misinterpretations or are otherwise limited. To provide a more comprehensive, up-to-date picture on zinc coordination environments in proteins, zinc containing protein structures deposited in the Protein Data Bank (PDB) were analyzed in detail. A statistical analysis in terms of zinc coordinating amino acids, metal-to-ligand bond lengths, coordination number, and structural classification was performed, revealing coordination spheres from classical tetrahedral cysteine/histidine binding sites to more complex binuclear sites with carboxylated lysine residues. According to the results, coordination spheres of hundreds of crystal structures in the PDB could be misinterpreted due to symmetry-related molecules or missing electron densities for ligands. The analysis also revealed increasing average metal-to-ligand bond length as a function of crystallographic resolution, which should be taken into account when interrogating metal ion binding sites. Moreover, one-third of the zinc ions present in crystal structures are artifacts, merely aiding crystal formation and packing with no biological significance. Our analysis provides solid evidence that a minimal stable zinc coordination sphere is made up by four ligands and adopts a tetrahedral coordination geometry.

  7. Transglutamination allows production and characterization of native-sized ELPylated spider silk proteins from transgenic plants.

    PubMed

    Weichert, Nicola; Hauptmann, Valeska; Menzel, Matthias; Schallau, Kai; Gunkel, Philip; Hertel, Thomas C; Pietzsch, Markus; Spohn, Uwe; Conrad, Udo

    2014-02-01

    In the last two decades it was shown that plants have a great potential for production of specific heterologous proteins. But high cost and inefficient downstream processing are a main technical bottleneck for the broader use of plant-based production technology especially for protein-based products, for technical use as fibres or biodegradable plastics and also for medical applications. High-performance fibres from recombinant spider silks are, therefore, a prominent example. Spiders developed rather different silk materials that are based on proteins. These spider silks show excellent properties in terms of elasticity and toughness. Natural spider silk proteins have a very high molecular weight, and it is precisely this property which is thought to give them their strength. Transgenic plants were generated to produce ELPylated recombinant spider silk derivatives. These fusion proteins were purified by Inverse Transition Cycling (ITC) and enzymatically multimerized with transglutaminase in vitro. Layers produced by casting monomers and multimers were characterized using atomic force microscopy (AFM) and AFM-based nanoindentation. The layered multimers formed by mixing lysine- and glutamine-tagged monomers were associated with the highest elastic penetration modulus.

  8. Magnesium chelatase subunit D from pea: characterization of the cDNA, heterologous expression of an enzymatically active protein and immunoassay of the native protein.

    PubMed

    Luo, M; Weinstein, J D; Walker, C J

    1999-12-01

    Mg-chelatase catalyzes the insertion of Mg into protoporphyrin and lies at the branchpoint of heme and (bacterio)chlorophyll synthesis. In prokaryotes, three genes--BchI, D and H--encode subunits for Mg-chelatase. In higher plants, homologous cDNAs for the I, D and H subunits have been characterized. Since the N-terminal half of the D subunit is homologous to the I subunit, the C-terminal portion of the pea D was used for antigen production. The antibody recognized the chloroplast D subunit and was used to demonstrate that this subunit associated with the membranes in the presence of MgCl2. The antibody immunoprecipitated the native protein and inhibited Mg-chelatase activity. Expression in Escherichia coli with a construct for the full-length protein (minus the putative transit peptide) resulted in induction of 24.5 kDa (major) and 89 kDa (minor) proteins which could only be solubilized in 6 M urea. However, when host cells were co-transformed with expression vectors for the full-length D subunit and for the 70 kDa HSP chaperonin protein, a substantial portion of the 89 kDa protein was expressed in a soluble form which was active in a Mg-chelatase reconstitution assay.

  9. Structure of the Nitrosomonas Europaea Rh Protein

    SciTech Connect

    Li, X.; Jayachandran, S.; Nguyen, H.-H.T.; Chan, M.K.

    2009-06-01

    Amt/MEP/Rh proteins are a family of integral membrane proteins implicated in the transport of NH3, CH(2)NH2, and CO2. Whereas Amt/MEP proteins are agreed to transport ammonia (NH3/NH4+), the primary substrate for Rh proteins has been controversial. Initial studies suggested that Rh proteins also transport ammonia, but more recent evidence suggests that they transport CO2. Here we report the first structure of an Rh family member, the Rh protein from the chemolithoautotrophic ammonia-oxidizing bacterium Nitrosomonas europaea. This Rh protein exhibits a number of similarities to its Amt cousins, including a trimeric oligomeric state, a central pore with an unusual twin-His site in the middle, and a Phe residue that blocks the channel for small-molecule transport. However, there are some significant differences, the most notable being the presence of an additional cytoplasmic C-terminal alpha-helix, an increased number of internal proline residues along the transmembrane helices, and a specific set of residues that appear to link the C-terminal helix to Phe blockage. This latter linkage suggests a mechanism in which binding of a partner protein to the C terminus could regulate channel opening. Another difference is the absence of the extracellular pi-cation binding site conserved in Amt/Mep structures. Instead, CO2 pressurization experiments identify a CO2 binding site near the intracellular exit of the channel whose residues are highly conserved in all Rh proteins, except those belonging to the Rh30 subfamily. The implications of these findings on the functional role of the human Rh antigens are discussed.

  10. Topology of Class A G Protein-Coupled Receptors: Insights Gained from Crystal Structures of Rhodopsins, Adrenergic and Adenosine Receptors

    PubMed Central

    Mustafi, Debarshi; Palczewski, Krzysztof

    2009-01-01

    Biological membranes are densely packed with membrane proteins that occupy approximately half of their volume. In almost all cases, membrane proteins in the native state lack the higher-order symmetry required for their direct study by diffraction methods. Despite many technical difficulties, numerous crystal structures of detergent solubilized membrane proteins have been determined that illustrate their internal organization. Among such proteins, class A G protein-coupled receptors have become amenable to crystallization and high resolution X-ray diffraction analyses. The derived structures of native and engineered receptors not only provide insights into their molecular arrangements but also furnish a framework for designing and testing