Sample records for vesicle structural protein

  1. Synaptic vesicle proteins and active zone plasticity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Robert J Kittel


    Full Text Available Neurotransmitter is released from synaptic vesicles at the highly specialized presynaptic active zone. The complex molecular architecture of active zones mediates the speed, precision and plasticity of synaptic transmission. Importantly, structural and functional properties of active zones vary significantly, even for a given connection. Thus, there appear to be distinct active zone states, which fundamentally influence neuronal communication by controlling the positioning and release of synaptic vesicles. Vice versa, recent evidence has revealed that synaptic vesicle components also modulate organizational states of the active zone.The protein-rich cytomatrix at the active zone (CAZ provides a structural platform for molecular interactions guiding vesicle exocytosis. Studies in Drosophila have now demonstrated that the vesicle proteins Synaptotagmin-1 (Syt1 and Rab3 also regulate glutamate release by shaping differentiation of the CAZ ultrastructure. We review these unexpected findings and discuss mechanistic interpretations of the reciprocal relationship between synaptic vesicles and active zone states, which has heretofore received little attention.

  2. Extracellular vesicles: a platform for the structure determination of membrane proteins by Cryo-EM. (United States)

    Zeev-Ben-Mordehai, Tzviya; Vasishtan, Daven; Siebert, C Alistair; Whittle, Cathy; Grünewald, Kay


    Membrane protein-enriched extracellular vesicles (MPEEVs) provide a platform for studying intact membrane proteins natively anchored with the correct topology in genuine biological membranes. This approach circumvents the need to conduct tedious detergent screens for solubilization, purification, and reconstitution required in classical membrane protein studies. We have applied this method to three integral type I membrane proteins, namely the Caenorhabditis elegans cell-cell fusion proteins AFF-1 and EFF-1 and the glycoprotein B (gB) from Herpes simplex virus type 1 (HSV1). Electron cryotomography followed by subvolume averaging allowed the 3D reconstruction of EFF-1 and HSV1 gB in the membrane as well as an analysis of the spatial distribution and interprotein interactions on the membrane. MPEEVs have many applications beyond structural/functional investigations, such as facilitating the raising of antibodies, for protein-protein interaction assays or for diagnostics use, as biomarkers, and possibly therapeutics. Copyright © 2014 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  3. Structure of Coatomer Cage Proteins and the Relationship among COPI, COPII, and Clathrin Vesicle Coats

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lee, Changwook; Goldberg, Jonathan (MSKCC)


    COPI-coated vesicles form at the Golgi apparatus from two cytosolic components, ARF G protein and coatomer, a heptameric complex that can polymerize into a cage to deform the membrane into a bud. Although coatomer shares a common evolutionary origin with COPII and clathrin vesicle coat proteins, the architectural relationship among the three cages is unclear. Strikingly, the {alpha}{beta}-COP core of coatomer crystallizes as a triskelion in which three copies of a {beta}-COP {beta}-propeller domain converge through their axial ends. We infer that the trimer constitutes the vertex of the COPI cage. Our model proposes that the COPI cage is intermediate in design between COPII and clathrin: COPI shares with clathrin an arrangement of three curved {alpha}-solenoid legs radiating from a common center, and COPI shares with COPII highly similar vertex interactions involving the axial ends of {beta}-propeller domains.

  4. Engineering Globular Protein Vesicles through Tunable Self-Assembly of Recombinant Fusion Proteins. (United States)

    Jang, Yeongseon; Choi, Won Tae; Heller, William T; Ke, Zunlong; Wright, Elizabeth R; Champion, Julie A


    Vesicles assembled from folded, globular proteins have potential for functions different from traditional lipid or polymeric vesicles. However, they also present challenges in understanding the assembly process and controlling vesicle properties. From detailed investigation of the assembly behavior of recombinant fusion proteins, this work reports a simple strategy to engineer protein vesicles containing functional, globular domains. This is achieved through tunable self-assembly of recombinant globular fusion proteins containing leucine zippers and elastin-like polypeptides. The fusion proteins form complexes in solution via high affinity binding of the zippers, and transition through dynamic coacervates to stable hollow vesicles upon warming. The thermal driving force, which can be tuned by protein concentration or temperature, controls both vesicle size and whether vesicles are single or bi-layered. These results provide critical information to engineer globular protein vesicles via self-assembly with desired size and membrane structure. © 2017 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  5. Vesicles and vesicle gels - structure and dynamics of formation

    CERN Document Server

    Gradzielski, M


    Vesicles constitute an interesting morphology formed by self-aggregating amphiphilic molecules. They exhibit a rich structural variety and are of interest both from a fundamental point of view (for studying closed bilayer systems) and from a practical point of view (whenever one is interested in the encapsulation of active molecules). In many circumstances vesicular structures have to be formed by external forces, but of great interest are amphiphilic systems, where they form spontaneously. Here the question arises of whether this means that they are also thermodynamically stable structures, which at least in some systems appears to be the case. If such vesicles are well defined in size, it is possible to pack them densely and thereby form vesicle gels that possess highly elastic properties even for relatively low volume fractions of amphiphile. Conditions for the formation and the microstructure of such vesicle gels have been studied in some detail for the case of unilamellar vesicles. Another important and ...

  6. Removal of Vesicle Structures From Transmission Electron Microscope Images (United States)

    Jensen, Katrine Hommelhoff; Sigworth, Fred J.; Brandt, Sami Sebastian


    In this paper, we address the problem of imaging membrane proteins for single-particle cryo-electron microscopy reconstruction of the isolated protein structure. More precisely, we propose a method for learning and removing the interfering vesicle signals from the micrograph, prior to reconstruction. In our approach, we estimate the subspace of the vesicle structures and project the micrographs onto the orthogonal complement of this subspace. We construct a 2d statistical model of the vesicle structure, based on higher order singular value decomposition (HOSVD), by considering the structural symmetries of the vesicles in the polar coordinate plane. We then propose to lift the HOSVD model to a novel hierarchical model by summarizing the multidimensional HOSVD coefficients by their principal components. Along with the model, a solid vesicle normalization scheme and model selection criterion are proposed to make a compact and general model. The results show that the vesicle structures are accurately separated from the background by the HOSVD model that is also able to adapt to the asymmetries of the vesicles. This is a promising result and suggests even wider applicability of the proposed approach in learning and removal of statistical structures. PMID:26642456

  7. Structure of Amphiphilic Terpolymer Raspberry Vesicles

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yingying Guo


    Full Text Available Terpolymer raspberry vesicles contain domains of different chemical affinities. They are potential candidates as multi-compartment cargo carriers. Their efficacy depends on their stability and load capacity. Using a model star terpolymer system in an aqueous solution, a dissipative particle dynamic (DPD simulation is employed to investigate how equilibrium aggregate structures are affected by polymer concentration and pairwise interaction energy in a solution. It is shown that a critical mass of polymer is necessary for vesicle formation. The free energy of the equilibrium aggregates are calculated and the results show that the transition from micelles to vesicles is governed by the interactions between the longest solvophobic block and the solvent. In addition, the ability of vesicles to encapsulate solvent is assessed. It is found that reducing the interaction energy favours solvent encapsulation, although solvent molecules can permeate through the vesicle’s shell when repulsive interactions among monomers are low. Thus, one can optimize the loading capacity and the release rate of the vesicles by turning pairwise interaction energies of the polymer and the solvent. The ability to predict and control these aspects of the vesicles is an essential step towards designing vesicles for specific purposes.

  8. Coated vesicles as protein release mechanism in myeloma cells. (United States)

    Trombetta, L D; Lazarus, S S

    An electron microscopic study was undertaken of the protein release mechanism within myeloma cells showing a very high degree of protein production. Smooth surfaced vesicles (50 millimicrons) were seen to originate from the outer margin of the perinuclear cistern. Similar vesicles were also associated with distended Golgi sacs. Possible function of these vesicles could not be determined. Coated vesicles (60 millimicrons) originated as evaginations from endoplasmic reticulum in the transitional region. They were present throughout the cytoplasm and were seen to fuse with the cell membrane discharging an electron dense material. These vesicles are, therefore, thought to transport protein from the rough endoplasmic reticulum and discharge it at the cell surface.

  9. Mutations in the major gas vesicle protein GvpA and impacts on gas vesicle formation in Haloferax volcanii. (United States)

    Knitsch, Regine; Schneefeld, Marie; Weitzel, Kerstin; Pfeifer, Felicitas


    Gas vesicles are proteinaceous, gas-filled nanostructures produced by some bacteria and archaea. The hydrophobic major structural protein GvpA forms the ribbed gas vesicle wall. An in-silico 3D-model of GvpA of the predicted coil-α1-β1-β2-α2-coil structure is available and implies that the two β-chains constitute the hydrophobic interior surface of the gas vesicle wall. To test the importance of individual amino acids in GvpA we performed 85 single substitutions and analyzed these variants in Haloferax volcanii ΔA + Amut transformants for their ability to form gas vesicles (Vac(+) phenotype). In most cases, an alanine substitution of a non-polar residue did not abolish gas vesicle formation, but the replacement of single non-polar by charged residues in β1 or β2 resulted in Vac(-) transformants. A replacement of residues near the β-turn altered the spindle-shape to a cylindrical morphology of the gas vesicles. Vac(-) transformants were also obtained with alanine substitutions of charged residues of helix α1 suggesting that these amino acids form salt-bridges with another GvpA monomer. In helix α2, only the alanine substitution of His53 or Tyr54, led to Vac(-) transformants, whereas most other substitutions had no effect. We discuss our results in respect to the GvpA structure and data available from solid-state NMR. © 2017 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  10. Wolbachia bacteria reside in host Golgi-related vesicles whose position is regulated by polarity proteins.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kyung-Ok Cho

    Full Text Available Wolbachia pipientis are intracellular symbiotic bacteria extremely common in various organisms including Drosophila melanogaster, and are known for their ability to induce changes in host reproduction. These bacteria are present in astral microtubule-associated vesicular structures in host cytoplasm, but little is known about the identity of these vesicles. We report here that Wolbachia are restricted only to a group of Golgi-related vesicles concentrated near the site of membrane biogenesis and minus-ends of microtubules. The Wolbachia vesicles were significantly mislocalized in mutant embryos defective in cell/planar polarity genes suggesting that cell/tissue polarity genes are required for apical localization of these Golgi-related vesicles. Furthermore, two of the polarity proteins, Van Gogh/Strabismus and Scribble, appeared to be present in these Golgi-related vesicles. Thus, establishment of polarity may be closely linked to the precise insertion of Golgi vesicles into the new membrane addition site.

  11. Formation of Giant Protein Vesicles by a Lipid Cosolvent Method

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hansen, Jesper S.; Vararattanavech, Ardcharaporn; Vissing, Thomas


    This paper describes a method to create giant protein vesicles (GPVs) of ≥10 μm by solvent‐driven fusion of large vesicles (0.1–0.2 μm) with reconstituted membrane proteins. We found that formation of GPVs proceeded from rotational mixing of protein‐reconstituted large unilamellar vesicles (LUVs)...... of spinach SoPIP2;1 and E. coli AqpZ aquaporins. Our findings show that hydrophobic interactions within the bilayer of formed GPVs are influenced not only by the solvent partitioning propensity, but also by lipid composition and membrane protein isoform....

  12. Transport vesicle tethering at the trans Golgi network: coiled coil proteins in action

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pak-yan Patricia Cheung


    Full Text Available The Golgi complex is decorated with so-called Golgin proteins that share a common feature: a large proportion of their amino acid sequences are predicted to form coiled-coil structures. The possible presence of extensive coiled coils implies that these proteins are highly elongated molecules that can extend a significant distance from the Golgi surface. This property would help them to capture or trap inbound transport vesicles and to tether Golgi mini-stacks together. This review will summarize our current understanding of coiled coil tethers that are needed for the receipt of transport vesicles at the trans Golgi network. How do long tethering proteins actually catch vesicles? Golgi-associated, coiled coil tethers contain numerous binding sites for small GTPases, SNARE proteins, and vesicle coat proteins. How are these interactions coordinated and are any or all of them important for the tethering process? Progress towards understanding these questions and remaining, unresolved mysteries will be discussed.

  13. Formation and structural properties of multi-block copolymer vesicles (United States)

    Wang, Rong; Ma, Shiying


    Due to the unique structure, vesicles have attracted considerable attention for their potential applications, such as gene and drug delivery, microcapsules, nanoreactors, cell membrane mimetic, synthetic organelles, etc. By using dissipative particle dynamics, we studied the self-assembly of amphiphilic multi-block copolymer. The phase diagram was constructed by varying the interaction parameters and the composition of the block copolymers. The results show that the vesicles are stable in a large region which is different from the diblock copolymer or triblock copolymer. The structural properties of vesicles can be controlled by varying the interaction parameters and the length of the hydrophobic block. The relationship between the hydrophilic and hydrophobic block length vs the aqueous cavity size and vesicle size are revealed. The copolymers with shorter hydrophobic blocks length or the higher hydrophilicity are more likely to form vesicles with larger aqueous cavity size and vesicle size as well as thinner wall thickness. However, the increase in hydrophobic-block length results to form vesicles with smaller aqueous cavity size and larger vesicle size. Acknowledgments. This work has been supported by NNSFC (No. 21074053) and NBRPC (No. 2010CB923303).

  14. Endocytic proteins drive vesicle growth via instability in high membrane tension environment

    CERN Document Server

    Walani, Nikhil; Agrawal, Ashutosh


    Clathrin-mediated endocytosis (CME) is a key pathway for transporting cargo into cells via membrane vesicles. It plays an integral role in nutrient import, signal transduction, neurotransmission and cellular entry of pathogens and drug-carrying nanoparticles. As CME entails substantial local remodeling of the plasma membrane, the presence of membrane tension offers resistance to bending and hence, vesicle formation. Experiments show that in such high tension conditions, actin dynamics is required to carry out CME successfully. In this study, we build upon these pioneering experimental studies to provide fundamental mechanistic insights into the roles of two key endocytic proteins, namely, actin and BAR proteins in driving vesicle formation in high membrane tension environment. Our study reveals a new actin force induced `snap-through instability' that triggers a rapid shape transition from a shallow invagination to a highly invaginated tubular structure. We show that the association of BAR proteins stabilizes...

  15. Durable vesicles for reconstitution of membrane proteins in biotechnology. (United States)

    Beales, Paul A; Khan, Sanobar; Muench, Stephen P; Jeuken, Lars J C


    The application of membrane proteins in biotechnology requires robust, durable reconstitution systems that enhance their stability and support their functionality in a range of working environments. Vesicular architectures are highly desirable to provide the compartmentalisation to utilise the functional transmembrane transport and signalling properties of membrane proteins. Proteoliposomes provide a native-like membrane environment to support membrane protein function, but can lack the required chemical and physical stability. Amphiphilic block copolymers can also self-assemble into polymersomes: tough vesicles with improved stability compared with liposomes. This review discusses the reconstitution of membrane proteins into polymersomes and the more recent development of hybrid vesicles, which blend the robust nature of block copolymers with the biofunctionality of lipids. These novel synthetic vesicles hold great promise for enabling membrane proteins within biotechnologies by supporting their enhanced in vitro performance and could also contribute to fundamental biochemical and biophysical research by improving the stability of membrane proteins that are challenging to work with. © 2017 The Author(s).

  16. Endothelial plasmalemmal vesicles have a characteristic striped bipolar surface structure. (United States)

    Peters, K R; Carley, W W; Palade, G E


    Capillary endothelial cells have a large population of small (65-80 nm diameter in transmission electron microscopy) vesicles of which a large fraction is associated with the plasmalemma of the luminal and abluminal side. We studied the fine structure and distribution of these plasmalemmal vesicles by high resolution scanning electron microscopy in cultured endothelial cells obtained from bovine adrenal cortical capillaries. Cell monolayers were covered with polylysine-coated silicon chips, split in high potassium buffer, fixed in aldehyde mixtures, and then treated with OsO4 and thiocarbohydrazide. After critical point drying, the specimens were coated with a thin (less than 2 nm) continuous film of chromium. On the cytoplasmic aspect of the dorsal plasmalemmal fragments seen in such specimens, plasmalemmal vesicles appear as uniform vesicular protrusions approximately 70-90 nm in diameter, preferentially concentrated in distinct large fields in which they occur primarily as single units. Individual plasmalemmal vesicles exhibit a striped surface fine structure which consists of ridges approximately 10 nm in diameter, separated by furrows and oriented as meridians, often ending at two poles on opposite sides of the vesicles in a plane parallel to the plasmalemma. This striped surface structure is clearly distinct from the cage structure of coated pits found, at low surface density, on the same specimens. The cytoplasmic aspect of the plasmalemma proper is covered by a fibrillar infrastructure which does not extend over plasmalemmal vesicles but on which the latter appear to be anchored by fine filaments.

  17. Yarrowia lipolytica vesicle-mediated protein transport pathways

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Beckerich Jean-Marie


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Protein secretion is a universal cellular process involving vesicles which bud and fuse between organelles to bring proteins to their final destination. Vesicle budding is mediated by protein coats; vesicle targeting and fusion depend on Rab GTPase, tethering factors and SNARE complexes. The Génolevures II sequencing project made available entire genome sequences of four hemiascomycetous yeasts, Yarrowia lipolytica, Debaryomyces hansenii, Kluyveromyces lactis and Candida glabrata. Y. lipolytica is a dimorphic yeast and has good capacities to secrete proteins. The translocation of nascent protein through the endoplasmic reticulum membrane was well studied in Y. lipolytica and is largely co-translational as in the mammalian protein secretion pathway. Results We identified S. cerevisiae proteins involved in vesicular secretion and these protein sequences were used for the BLAST searches against Génolevures protein database (Y. lipolytica, C. glabrata, K. lactis and D. hansenii. These proteins are well conserved between these yeasts and Saccharomyces cerevisiae. We note several specificities of Y. lipolytica which may be related to its good protein secretion capacities and to its dimorphic aspect. An expansion of the Y. lipolytica Rab protein family was observed with autoBLAST and the Rab2- and Rab4-related members were identified with BLAST against NCBI protein database. An expansion of this family is also found in filamentous fungi and may reflect the greater complexity of the Y. lipolytica secretion pathway. The Rab4p-related protein may play a role in membrane recycling as rab4 deleted strain shows a modification of colony morphology, dimorphic transition and permeability. Similarly, we find three copies of the gene (SSO encoding the plasma membrane SNARE protein. Quantification of the percentages of proteins with the greatest homology between S. cerevisiae, Y. lipolytica and animal homologues involved in vesicular

  18. Amyloid precursor protein knockout diminishes synaptic vesicle proteins at the presynaptic active zone in mouse brain. (United States)

    Laßek, Melanie; Weingarten, Jens; Acker-Palmer, Amparo; Bajjalieh, Sandra M; Muller, Ulrike; Volknandt, Walter


    The amyloid precursor protein (APP) has previously been allocated to an organellar pool residing in the Golgi apparatus and in endosomal compartments, and in its mature form to a presynaptic active zone-localized pool. By analyzing homozygous APP knockout mice we evaluated the impact of APP on synaptic vesicle protein abundance at synaptic release sites. Following immunopurification of synaptic vesicles and the attached presynaptic plasma membrane, individual proteins were subjected to quantitative Western blot analysis. We demonstrate that APP deletion in knockout animals reduces the abundance of the synaptic vesicle proteins synaptophysin, synaptotagmin-1, and SV2A at the presynaptic active zone. Conversely, deletion of the additional APP family members, APLP1 and APLP2 resulted in an increase in synaptophysin, synaptogamin-1, and SV2A abundance. When transmembrane APP is lacking in APPsα-KI/APLP2-KO mice synaptic vesicle protein abundance corresponds to that in APP -KO mice. Deletion of the synaptic vesicle protein 2 (SV2) A and B had no effect on APP and synaptophysin abundance but decreased synaptotagmin-1. Our data suggest that APP controls the abundance of synaptic vesicle proteins at the presynaptic release sites and thus impacts synaptic transmission.

  19. Monosaccharide transport in protein-depleted vesicles from erythrocyte membranes

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    M A Zoccoli; G E Lienhard


    .... Based on comparisons between erythrocytes and vesicles with regard to specificity, temparture dependence, and effects of inhibitors, we conclude that sorbose uptake into the vesicles occurs by way...

  20. Rab proteins: The key regulators of intracellular vesicle transport

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bhuin, Tanmay [Cell and Developmental Biology Unit, Department of Zoology, The University of Burdwan, Golapbag 713104 (India); Roy, Jagat Kumar, E-mail: [Cytogenetics Laboratory, Department of Zoology, Banaras Hindu University, Varanasi 221005 (India)


    Vesicular/membrane trafficking essentially regulates the compartmentalization and abundance of proteins within the cells and contributes in many signalling pathways. This membrane transport in eukaryotic cells is a complex process regulated by a large and diverse array of proteins. A large group of monomeric small GTPases; the Rabs are essential components of this membrane trafficking route. Most of the Rabs are ubiquitously expressed proteins and have been implicated in vesicle formation, vesicle motility/delivery along cytoskeleton elements and docking/fusion at target membranes through the recruitment of effectors. Functional impairments of Rabs affecting transport pathways manifest different diseases. Rab functions are accompanied by cyclical activation and inactivation of GTP-bound and GDP-bound forms between the cytosol and membranes which is regulated by upstream regulators. Rab proteins are characterized by their distinct sub-cellular localization and regulate a wide variety of endocytic, transcytic and exocytic transport pathways. Mutations of Rabs affect cell growth, motility and other biological processes. - Highlights: • Rab proteins regulate different signalling pathways. • Deregulation of Rabs is the fundamental causes of a variety of human diseases. • This paper gives potential directions in developing therapeutic targets. • This paper also gives ample directions for modulating pathways central to normal physiology. • These are the huge challenges for drug discovery and delivery in near future.

  1. Protein Structure (United States)

    Asmus, Elaine Garbarino


    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…

  2. Extracellular Vesicles from Parasitic Helminths Contain Specific Excretory/Secretory Proteins and Are Internalized in Intestinal Host Cells (United States)

    Marcilla, Antonio; Trelis, María; Cortés, Alba; Sotillo, Javier; Cantalapiedra, Fernando; Minguez, María Teresa; Valero, María Luz; Sánchez del Pino, Manuel Mateo; Muñoz-Antoli, Carla; Toledo, Rafael; Bernal, Dolores


    The study of host-parasite interactions has increased considerably in the last decades, with many studies focusing on the identification of parasite molecules (i.e. surface or excretory/secretory proteins (ESP)) as potential targets for new specific treatments and/or diagnostic tools. In parallel, in the last few years there have been significant advances in the field of extracellular vesicles research. Among these vesicles, exosomes of endocytic origin, with a characteristic size ranging from 30–100 nm, carry several atypical secreted proteins in different organisms, including parasitic protozoa. Here, we present experimental evidence for the existence of exosome-like vesicles in parasitic helminths, specifically the trematodes Echinostoma caproni and Fasciola hepatica. These microvesicles are actively released by the parasites and are taken up by host cells. Trematode extracellular vesicles contain most of the proteins previously identified as components of ESP, as confirmed by proteomic, immunogold labeling and electron microscopy studies. In addition to parasitic proteins, we also identify host proteins in these structures. The existence of extracellular vesicles explains the secretion of atypical proteins in trematodes, and the demonstration of their uptake by host cells suggests an important role for these structures in host-parasite communication, as described for other infectious agents. PMID:23029346

  3. MAA-1, a novel acyl-CoA-binding protein involved in endosomal vesicle transport in Caenorhabditis elegans

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kobæk Larsen, Morten; Tuck, Simon; Færgeman, Nils J.


    The budding and fission of vesicles during membrane trafficking requires many proteins, including those that coat the vesicles, adaptor proteins that recruit components of the coat, and small GTPases that initiate vesicle formation. In addition, vesicle formation in vitro is promoted by the hydro...

  4. Mechanical properties of bare and protein-coated giant unilamellar phospholipid vesicles. A comparative study of micropipet aspiration and atomic force microscopy. (United States)

    Dieluweit, Sabine; Csiszár, Agnes; Rubner, Wolfgang; Fleischhauer, Johannes; Houben, Sebastian; Merkel, Rudolf


    In this study, protein-coated giant phospholipid vesicles were used to model cell plasma membranes coated by surface protein layers that increase membrane stiffness under mechanical or osmotic stress. These changed mechanical properties like bending stiffness, membrane area compressibility modulus, and effective Young's modulus were determined by micropipet aspiration, while bending stiffness, effective Young's modulus, and effective spring constant of vesicles were analyzed by AFM. The experimental setups, the applied models, and the results using both methods were compared here. As demonstrated before, we found that bare vesicles were best probed by micropipet aspiration due to its high sensitivity. The mechanical properties of vesicles with protein surface layers were, however, better determined by AFM because it enables very local deformations of the membrane with barely any structural damage to the protein layer. Mechanical properties of different species of coating proteins, here streptavidin and avidin, could be clearly distinguished using this technique.

  5. Vesicle Photonics (United States)

    Vasdekis, A. E.; Scott, E. A.; Roke, S.; Hubbell, J. A.; Psaltis, D.


    Amphiphiles, under appropriate conditions, can self-assemble into nanoscale thin membrane vessels (vesicles) that encapsulate and hence protect and transport molecular payloads. Vesicles assemble naturally within cells but can also be artificially synthesized. In this article, we review the mechanisms and applications of light-field interactions with vesicles. By being associated with light-emitting entities (e.g., dyes, fluorescent proteins, or quantum dots), vesicles can act as imaging agents in addition to cargo carriers. Vesicles can also be optically probed on the basis of their nonlinear response, typically from the vesicle membrane. Light fields can be employed to transport vesicles by using optical tweezers (photon momentum) or can directly perturb the stability of vesicles and hence trigger the delivery of the encapsulated payload (photon energy). We conclude with emerging vesicle applications in biology and photochemical microreactors.

  6. Protein-protein and protein-lipid interactions in domain-assembly : Lessons from giant unilamellar vesicles

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kahya, Nicoletta

    Giant Unilamellar Vesicles (GUVs) provide a key model membrane system to study lipid-lipid and lipid-protein interactions, which are relevant to vital cellular processes, by (single-molecule) optical microscopy. Here, we review the work on reconstitution techniques for membrane proteins and other

  7. Extracellular vesicles secreted by Schistosoma mansoni contain protein vaccine candidates. (United States)

    Sotillo, Javier; Pearson, Mark; Potriquet, Jeremy; Becker, Luke; Pickering, Darren; Mulvenna, Jason; Loukas, Alex


    Herein we show for the first time that Schistosoma mansoni adult worms secrete exosome-like extracellular vesicles ranging from 50 to 130nm in size. Extracellular vesicles were collected from the excretory/secretory products of cultured adult flukes and purified by Optiprep density gradient, resulting in highly pure extracellular vesicle preparations as confirmed by transmission electron microscopy and Nanosight tracking analysis. Extracellular vesicle proteomic analysis showed numerous known vaccine candidates, potential virulence factors and molecules implicated in feeding. These findings provide new avenues for the exploration of host-schistosome interactions and offer a potential mechanism by which some vaccine antigens exert their protective efficacy. Copyright © 2015 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd.. All rights reserved.

  8. Dystrophin deficiency leads to disturbance of LAMP1-vesicle-associated protein secretion

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Duguez, S.; Duddy, W.; Johnston, H.


    Duchenne muscular dystrophy results from loss of the protein dystrophin, which links the intracellular cytoskeletal network with the extracellular matrix, but deficiency in this function does not fully explain the onset or progression of the disease. While some intracellular events involved...... (SILAC), finding marked enrichment of vesicular markers in the mdx secretome. These included the lysosomal-associated membrane protein, LAMP1, that co-localized in vesicles with an over-secreted cytoskeletal protein, myosin light chain 1. These LAMP1/MLC1-3-positive vesicles accumulated in the cytosol...... of dystrophin leads to a general dysregulation of vesicle trafficking. We hypothesize that disturbance of the export of proteins through vesicles occurs before, and then concurrently with, the myonecrotic cascade and contributes chronically to the pathophysiology of DMD, thereby presenting us with a range...

  9. APache Is an AP2-Interacting Protein Involved in Synaptic Vesicle Trafficking and Neuronal Development. (United States)

    Piccini, Alessandra; Castroflorio, Enrico; Valente, Pierluigi; Guarnieri, Fabrizia C; Aprile, Davide; Michetti, Caterina; Bramini, Mattia; Giansante, Giorgia; Pinto, Bruno; Savardi, Annalisa; Cesca, Fabrizia; Bachi, Angela; Cattaneo, Angela; Wren, Jonathan D; Fassio, Anna; Valtorta, Flavia; Benfenati, Fabio; Giovedì, Silvia


    Synaptic transmission is critically dependent on synaptic vesicle (SV) recycling. Although the precise mechanisms of SV retrieval are still debated, it is widely accepted that a fundamental role is played by clathrin-mediated endocytosis, a form of endocytosis that capitalizes on the clathrin/adaptor protein complex 2 (AP2) coat and several accessory factors. Here, we show that the previously uncharacterized protein KIAA1107, predicted by bioinformatics analysis to be involved in the SV cycle, is an AP2-interacting clathrin-endocytosis protein (APache). We found that APache is highly enriched in the CNS and is associated with clathrin-coated vesicles via interaction with AP2. APache-silenced neurons exhibit a severe impairment of maturation at early developmental stages, reduced SV density, enlarged endosome-like structures, and defects in synaptic transmission, consistent with an impaired clathrin/AP2-mediated SV recycling. Our data implicate APache as an actor in the complex regulation of SV trafficking, neuronal development, and synaptic plasticity. Copyright © 2017 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  10. APache Is an AP2-Interacting Protein Involved in Synaptic Vesicle Trafficking and Neuronal Development

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alessandra Piccini


    Full Text Available Synaptic transmission is critically dependent on synaptic vesicle (SV recycling. Although the precise mechanisms of SV retrieval are still debated, it is widely accepted that a fundamental role is played by clathrin-mediated endocytosis, a form of endocytosis that capitalizes on the clathrin/adaptor protein complex 2 (AP2 coat and several accessory factors. Here, we show that the previously uncharacterized protein KIAA1107, predicted by bioinformatics analysis to be involved in the SV cycle, is an AP2-interacting clathrin-endocytosis protein (APache. We found that APache is highly enriched in the CNS and is associated with clathrin-coated vesicles via interaction with AP2. APache-silenced neurons exhibit a severe impairment of maturation at early developmental stages, reduced SV density, enlarged endosome-like structures, and defects in synaptic transmission, consistent with an impaired clathrin/AP2-mediated SV recycling. Our data implicate APache as an actor in the complex regulation of SV trafficking, neuronal development, and synaptic plasticity.

  11. LL-37 Triggers Formation of Streptococcus pyogenes Extracellular Vesicle-Like Structures with Immune Stimulatory Properties. (United States)

    Uhlmann, Julia; Rohde, Manfred; Siemens, Nikolai; Kreikemeyer, Bernd; Bergman, Peter; Johansson, Linda; Norrby-Teglund, Anna


    Reports have shown that the antimicrobial peptide LL-37 is abundantly expressed but has limited bactericidal effect in Streptococcus pyogenes infections. At sub-inhibitory concentrations, LL-37 has been reported to alter virulence gene expression. Here, we explored the interaction of S. pyogenes strains with LL-37, focusing on bacterial growth, cell surface alterations and pro-inflammatory responses. Bioscreen turbidity measurements of strain 5448 cultured in the presence or absence of LL-37 confirmed the poor antimicrobial effect, and revealed a significant increase in turbidity of bacterial cultures exposed to sub-inhibitory concentrations of LL-37. However, this was not linked to increased bacterial counts. Electron microscopy of LL-37-exposed bacteria revealed the presence of vesicle-like structures on the bacterial surface. The vesicles stained positive for LL-37 and were released from the bacterial surface. Concentrated supernatants enriched in these structures had a broader protein content, including several virulence factors, compared to supernatants from untreated bacteria. The supernatants from LL-37-exposed bacteria were pro-inflammatory and elicited resistin and myeloperoxidase release from neutrophils. This is the first report on S. pyogenes extracellular vesicle-like structures formed at the bacterial surface in response to LL-37. The associated increased pro-inflammatory activity further implicates LL-37 as a potential factor involved in S. pyogenes pathogenesis. © 2015 S. Karger AG, Basel.

  12. PI(4,5)P2-binding effector proteins for vesicle exocytosis (United States)

    Martin, Thomas F. J.


    PI(4,5)P2 participates directly in priming and possibly fusion steps of Ca2+-triggered vesicle exocytosis. High concentration nanodomains of PI(4,5)P2 reside on the plasma membrane of neuroendocrine cells. A subset of vesicles that co-localize with PI(4,5)P2 domains appear to undergo preferential exocytosis in stimulated cells. PI(4,5)P2 directly regulates vesicle exocytosis by recruiting and activating PI(4,5)P2-binding proteins that regulate SNARE protein function including CAPS, Munc13-1/2, synaptotagmin-1, and other C2 domain-containing proteins. These PI(4,5)P2 effector proteins are coincidence detectors that engage in multiple interactions at vesicle exocytic sites. The SNARE protein syntaxin-1 also binds to PI(4,5)P2, which promotes clustering, but an activating role for PI(4,5)P2 in syntaxin-1 function remains to be fully characterized. Similar principles underlie polarized constitutive vesicle fusion mediated in part by the PI(4,5)P2-binding subunits of the exocyst complex (Sec3, Exo70). Overall, focal vesicle exocytosis occurs at sites landmarked by PI(4,5)P2, which serves to recruit and/or activate multifunctional PI(4,5)P2-binding proteins. PMID:25280637

  13. PI(4,5)P₂-binding effector proteins for vesicle exocytosis. (United States)

    Martin, Thomas F J


    PI(4,5)P₂participates directly in priming and possibly in fusion steps of Ca²⁺-triggered vesicle exocytosis. High concentration nanodomains of PI(4,5)P₂reside on the plasma membrane of neuroendocrine cells. A subset of vesicles that co-localize with PI(4,5)P₂ domains appear to undergo preferential exocytosis in stimulated cells. PI(4,5)P₂directly regulates vesicle exocytosis by recruiting and activating PI(4,5)P₂-binding proteins that regulate SNARE protein function including CAPS, Munc13-1/2, synaptotagmin-1, and other C2 domain-containing proteins. These PI(4,5)P₂effector proteins are coincidence detectors that engage in multiple interactions at vesicle exocytic sites. The SNARE protein syntaxin-1 also binds to PI(4,5)P₂, which promotes clustering, but an activating role for PI(4,5)P₂in syntaxin-1 function remains to be fully characterized. Similar principles underlie polarized constitutive vesicle fusion mediated in part by the PI(4,5)P₂-binding subunits of the exocyst complex (Sec3, Exo70). Overall, focal vesicle exocytosis occurs at sites landmarked by PI(4,5)P2, which serves to recruit and/or activate multifunctional PI(4,5)P₂-binding proteins. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled Phosphoinositides. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  14. Saccharomyces cerevisiae cells lacking Pex3 contain membrane vesicles that harbor a subset of peroxisomal membrane proteins. (United States)

    Wróblewska, Justyna P; Cruz-Zaragoza, Luis Daniel; Yuan, Wei; Schummer, Andreas; Chuartzman, Silvia G; de Boer, Rinse; Oeljeklaus, Silke; Schuldiner, Maya; Zalckvar, Einat; Warscheid, Bettina; Erdmann, Ralf; van der Klei, Ida J


    Pex3 has been proposed to be important for the exit of peroxisomal membrane proteins (PMPs) from the ER, based on the observation that PMPs accumulate at the ER in Saccharomyces cerevisiae pex3 mutant cells. Using a combination of microscopy and biochemical approaches, we show that a subset of the PMPs, including the receptor docking protein Pex14, localizes to membrane vesicles in S. cerevisiae pex3 cells. These vesicles are morphologically distinct from the ER and do not co-sediment with ER markers in cell fractionation experiments. At the vesicles, Pex14 assembles with other peroxins (Pex13, Pex17, and Pex5) to form a complex with a composition similar to the PTS1 import pore in wild-type cells. Fluorescence microscopy studies revealed that also the PTS2 receptor Pex7, the importomer organizing peroxin Pex8, the ubiquitin conjugating enzyme Pex4 with its recruiting PMP Pex22, as well as Pex15 and Pex25 co-localize with Pex14. Other peroxins (including the RING finger complex and Pex27) did not accumulate at these structures, of which Pex11 localized to mitochondria. In line with these observations, proteomic analysis showed that in addition to the docking proteins and Pex5, also Pex7, Pex4/Pex22 and Pex25 were present in Pex14 complexes isolated from pex3 cells. However, formation of the entire importomer was not observed, most likely because Pex8 and the RING proteins were absent in the Pex14 protein complexes. Our data suggest that peroxisomal membrane vesicles can form in the absence of Pex3 and that several PMPs can insert in these vesicles in a Pex3 independent manner. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  15. The BAR Domain Protein PICK1 Controls Vesicle Number and Size in Adrenal Chromaffin Cells

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    da Silva Pinheiro, Paulo César; Jansen, Anna M; de Wit, Heidi


    Protein Interacting with C Kinase 1 (PICK1) is a Bin/Amphiphysin/Rvs (BAR) domain protein involved in AMPA receptor trafficking. Here, we identify a selective role for PICK1 in the biogenesis of large, dense core vesicles (LDCVs) in mouse chromaffin cells. PICK1 colocalized with syntaxin-6......, a marker for immature granules. In chromaffin cells isolated from a PICK1 knockout (KO) mouse the amount of exocytosis was reduced, while release kinetics and Ca(2+) sensitivity were unaffected. Vesicle-fusion events had a reduced frequency and released lower amounts of transmitter per vesicle (i.......e., reduced quantal size). This was paralleled by a reduction in the mean single-vesicle capacitance, estimated by averaging time-locked capacitance traces. EM confirmed that LDCVs were fewer and of markedly reduced size in the PICK1 KO, demonstrating that all phenotypes can be explained by reductions...

  16. Characterisation of adipocyte-derived extracellular vesicle subtypes identifies distinct protein and lipid signatures for large and small extracellular vesicles. (United States)

    Durcin, Maëva; Fleury, Audrey; Taillebois, Emiliane; Hilairet, Grégory; Krupova, Zuzana; Henry, Céline; Truchet, Sandrine; Trötzmüller, Martin; Köfeler, Harald; Mabilleau, Guillaume; Hue, Olivier; Andriantsitohaina, Ramaroson; Martin, Patrice; Le Lay, Soazig


    Extracellular vesicles (EVs) are biological vectors that can modulate the metabolism of target cells by conveying signalling proteins and genomic material. The level of EVs in plasma is significantly increased in cardiometabolic diseases associated with obesity, suggesting their possible participation in the development of metabolic dysfunction. With regard to the poor definition of adipocyte-derived EVs, the purpose of this study was to characterise both qualitatively and quantitatively EVs subpopulations secreted by fat cells. Adipocyte-derived EVs were isolated by differential centrifugation of conditioned media collected from 3T3-L1 adipocytes cultured for 24 h in serum-free conditions. Based on morphological and biochemical properties, as well as quantification of secreted EVs, we distinguished two subpopulations of adipocyte-derived EVs, namely small extracellular vesicles (sEVs) and large extracellular vesicles (lEVs). Proteomic analyses revealed that lEVs and sEVs exhibit specific protein signatures, allowing us not only to define novel markers of each population, but also to predict their biological functions. Despite similar phospholipid patterns, the comparative lipidomic analysis performed on these EV subclasses revealed a specific cholesterol enrichment of the sEV population, whereas lEVs were characterised by high amounts of externalised phosphatidylserine. Enhanced secretion of lEVs and sEVs is achievable following exposure to different biological stimuli related to the chronic low-grade inflammation state associated with obesity. Finally, we demonstrate the ability of primary murine adipocytes to secrete sEVs and lEVs, which display physical and biological characteristics similar to those described for 3T3-L1. Our study provides additional information and elements to define EV subtypes based on the characterisation of adipocyte-derived EV populations. It also underscores the need to distinguish EV subpopulations, through a combination of multiple

  17. Removal of Vesicle Structures from Transmission Electron Microscope Images

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jensen, Katrine Hommelhoff; Sigworth, Fred; Brandt, Sami Sebastian


    symmetries of the vesicles in the polar coordinate plane. We then propose to lift the HOSVD model to a novel hierarchical model by summarizing the multidimensional HOSVD coefficients by their principal components. Along with the model, a solid vesicle normalization scheme and model selection criterion...

  18. Vesicles from Amphiphilic Dumbbells and Janus Dendrimers: Bioinspired Self-Assembled Structures for Biomedical Applications

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Soraya Taabache


    Full Text Available The current review focuses on vesicles obtained from the self-assembly of two types of dendritic macromolecules, namely amphiphilic Janus dendrimers (forming dendrimersomes and amphiphilic dumbbells. In the first part, we will present some synthetic strategies and the various building blocks that can be used to obtain dendritic-based macromolecules, thereby showing their structural versatility. We put our focus on amphiphilic Janus dendrimers and amphiphilic dumbbells that form vesicles in water but we also encompass vesicles formed thereof in organic solvents. The second part of this review deals with the production methods of these vesicles at the nanoscale but also at the microscale. Furthermore, the influence of various parameters (intrinsic to the amphiphilic JD and extrinsic—from the environment on the type of vesicle formed will be discussed. In the third part, we will review the numerous biomedical applications of these vesicles of nano- or micron-size.

  19. ATM protein is located on presynaptic vesicles and its deficit leads to failures in synaptic plasticity. (United States)

    Vail, Graham; Cheng, Aifang; Han, Yu Ray; Zhao, Teng; Du, Shengwang; Loy, Michael M T; Herrup, Karl; Plummer, Mark R


    Ataxia telangiectasia is a multisystemic disorder that includes a devastating neurodegeneration phenotype. The ATM (ataxia-telangiectasia mutated) protein is well-known for its role in the DNA damage response, yet ATM is also found in association with cytoplasmic vesicular structures: endosomes and lysosomes, as well as neuronal synaptic vesicles. In keeping with this latter association, electrical stimulation of the Schaffer collateral pathway in hippocampal slices from ATM-deficient mice does not elicit normal long-term potentiation (LTP). The current study was undertaken to assess the nature of this deficit. Theta burst-induced LTP was reduced in Atm(-/-) animals, with the reduction most pronounced at burst stimuli that included 6 or greater trains. To assess whether the deficit was associated with a pre- or postsynaptic failure, we analyzed paired-pulse facilitation and found that it too was significantly reduced in Atm(-/-) mice. This indicates a deficit in presynaptic function. As further evidence that these synaptic effects of ATM deficiency were presynaptic, we used stochastic optical reconstruction microscopy. Three-dimensional reconstruction revealed that ATM is significantly more closely associated with Piccolo (a presynaptic marker) than with Homer1 (a postsynaptic marker). These results underline how, in addition to its nuclear functions, ATM plays an important functional role in the neuronal synapse where it participates in the regulation of presynaptic vesicle physiology. Copyright © 2016 the American Physiological Society.

  20. Structure of clathrin-coated vesicles from small-angle scattering experiments

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pedersen, J.S.


    used for interpreting the data has spherical symmetry and explicitly takes into account polydispersity, which is described by a Gaussian distribution. A constant thickness of the clathrin coats is assumed. The fitting of the model shows that the coated vesicles consist of a low-density outer protein...... shell (clathrin) and a central protein shell (accessory polypeptides and receptors) of approximately six times higher density. For the X-ray scattering and neutron contrast variation data. the polydispersity of the samples is of the order of 90 angstrom (full-width-at-half-maximum value) and the average...... is situated in the central high-density shell, which gives a large amount of protein in the lipid membrane. The densities of the central shell and the lipid membrane show that the hydration is small in the central region. A comparison of the total mass, the mass distribution, and the structure of the average...

  1. The TIP30 protein complex, arachidonic acid and coenzyme A are required for vesicle membrane fusion.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chengliang Zhang

    Full Text Available Efficient membrane fusion has been successfully mimicked in vitro using artificial membranes and a number of cellular proteins that are currently known to participate in membrane fusion. However, these proteins are not sufficient to promote efficient fusion between biological membranes, indicating that critical fusogenic factors remain unidentified. We have recently identified a TIP30 protein complex containing TIP30, acyl-CoA synthetase long-chain family member 4 (ACSL4 and Endophilin B1 (Endo B1 that promotes the fusion of endocytic vesicles with Rab5a vesicles, which transport endosomal acidification enzymes vacuolar (H⁺-ATPases (V-ATPases to the early endosomes in vivo. Here, we demonstrate that the TIP30 protein complex facilitates the fusion of endocytic vesicles with Rab5a vesicles in vitro. Fusion of the two vesicles also depends on arachidonic acid, coenzyme A and the synthesis of arachidonyl-CoA by ACSL4. Moreover, the TIP30 complex is able to transfer arachidonyl groups onto phosphatidic acid (PA, producing a new lipid species that is capable of inducing close contact between membranes. Together, our data suggest that the TIP30 complex facilitates biological membrane fusion through modification of PA on membranes.

  2. Structure parameters of synaptic vesicles quantified by small-angle x-ray scattering. (United States)

    Castorph, Simon; Riedel, Dietmar; Arleth, Lise; Sztucki, Michael; Jahn, Reinhard; Holt, Matthew; Salditt, Tim


    Synaptic vesicles (SVs) are small, membrane-bound organelles that are found in the synaptic terminal of neurons, and which are crucial in neurotransmission. After a rise in internal [Ca(2+)] during neuronal stimulation, SVs fuse with the plasma membrane releasing their neurotransmitter content, which then signals neighboring neurons. SVs are subsequently recycled and refilled with neurotransmitter for further rounds of release. Recently, tremendous progress has been made in elucidating the molecular composition of SVs, as well as putative protein-protein interactions. However, what is lacking is an empirical description of SV structure at the supramolecular level-which is necessary to enable us to fully understand the processes of membrane fusion, retrieval, and recycling. Using small-angle x-ray scattering, we have directly investigated the size and structure of purified SVs. From this information, we deduced detailed size and density parameters for the protein layers responsible for SV function, as well as information about the lipid bilayer. To achieve a convincing model fit, a laterally anisotropic structure for the protein shell is needed, as a rotationally symmetric density profile does not explain the data. Not only does our model confirm many of the preexisting ideas concerning SV structure, but also for the first time, to our knowledge, it indicates structural refinements, such as the presence of protein microdomains. Copyright (c) 2010 Biophysical Society. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  3. Structure Parameters of Synaptic Vesicles Quantified by Small-Angle X-Ray Scattering (United States)

    Castorph, Simon; Riedel, Dietmar; Arleth, Lise; Sztucki, Michael; Jahn, Reinhard; Holt, Matthew; Salditt, Tim


    Synaptic vesicles (SVs) are small, membrane-bound organelles that are found in the synaptic terminal of neurons, and which are crucial in neurotransmission. After a rise in internal [Ca2+] during neuronal stimulation, SVs fuse with the plasma membrane releasing their neurotransmitter content, which then signals neighboring neurons. SVs are subsequently recycled and refilled with neurotransmitter for further rounds of release. Recently, tremendous progress has been made in elucidating the molecular composition of SVs, as well as putative protein-protein interactions. However, what is lacking is an empirical description of SV structure at the supramolecular level—which is necessary to enable us to fully understand the processes of membrane fusion, retrieval, and recycling. Using small-angle x-ray scattering, we have directly investigated the size and structure of purified SVs. From this information, we deduced detailed size and density parameters for the protein layers responsible for SV function, as well as information about the lipid bilayer. To achieve a convincing model fit, a laterally anisotropic structure for the protein shell is needed, as a rotationally symmetric density profile does not explain the data. Not only does our model confirm many of the preexisting ideas concerning SV structure, but also for the first time, to our knowledge, it indicates structural refinements, such as the presence of protein microdomains. PMID:20371319

  4. Structural Characterization of Tip20p and Dsl1p, Subunits of the Dsl1p Vesicle Tethering Complex

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Tripathi, A.; Ren, Y; Jeffrey, P; Hughson, F


    Multisubunit tethering complexes are essential for intracellular trafficking and have been proposed to mediate the initial interaction between vesicles and the membranes with which they fuse. Here we report initial structural characterization of the Dsl1p complex, whose three subunits are essential for trafficking from the Golgi apparatus to the endoplasmic reticulum (ER). Crystal structures reveal that two of the three subunits, Tip20p and Dsl1p, resemble known subunits of the exocyst complex, establishing a structural connection among several multisubunit tethering complexes and implying that many of their subunits are derived from a common progenitor. We show, moreover, that Tip20p and Dsl1p interact directly via N-terminal alpha-helices. Finally, we establish that different Dsl1p complex subunits bind independently to different ER SNARE proteins. Our results map out two alternative protein-interaction networks capable of tethering COPI-coated vesicles, via the Dsl1p complex, to ER membranes.

  5. Rab3 proteins involved in vesicle biogenesis and priming in embryonic mouse chromaffin cells

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Schonn, Jean-Sébastien; van Weering, Jan R T; Mohrmann, Ralf


    The four Rab3 paralogs A-D are involved in exocytosis, but their mechanisms of action are hard to study due to functional redundancy. Here we used a quadruple Rab3 knock-out (rab3a, rab3b, rab3c, rab3d null, here denoted ABCD(-/-)) mouse line to investigate Rab3 function in embryonic mouse adrenal...... chromaffin cells by electron microscopy and electrophysiological measurements. We show that in cells from ABCD(-/-) animals large dense core vesicles (LDCVs) are less abundant while the number of morphologically docked granules is normal. By capacitance measurements, we show that deletion of Rab3s reduces...... rate after an initial delay. Rescue experiments showed that short-term (4-6 hours) overexpression of Rab3A or Rab3C suffices to rescue vesicle priming and secretion, but it does not restore the number of secretory vesicles. We conclude that Rab3 proteins play two distinct stimulating roles for LDCV...

  6. The effect of vesicle shape, line tension, and lateral tension on membrane-binding proteins (United States)

    Hutchison, Jaime B.

    Model membranes allow for the exploration of complex biological phenomena with simple, controllable components. In this thesis we employ model membranes to determine the effect of vesicle properties such as line tension, lateral tension, and shape on membrane-binding proteins. We find that line tension at the boundary between domains in a phase separated vesicle can accumulate model membrane-binding proteins (green fluorescent protein with a histidine tag), and that those proteins can, in turn, alter vesicle shape. These results suggest that domains in biological membranes may enhance the local concentration of membrane-bound proteins and thus alter protein function. We also explore how membrane mechanical and chemical properties alter the function of the N-BAR domain of amphiphysin, a membrane-binding protein implicated in endocytosis. We find that negatively charged lipids are necessary for N-BAR binding to membranes at detectable levels, and that, at least for some lipid species, binding may be cooperative. Measurements of N-BAR binding as a function of vesicle tension reveal that modest membrane tension of around 2 mN/m, corresponding to a strain of around 1%, strongly increases N-BAR binding. We attribute this increase in binding with tension to the insertion of N-BAR's N-terminal amphipathic helix into the membrane which increases the membrane area. We propose that N-BAR, which was previously described as being able to sense membrane curvature, may be sensing strain instead. Measurements of membrane deformation by N-BAR as a function of membrane tension reveal that tension can hinder membrane deformation. Thus, tension may favor N-BAR binding yet suppress membrane deformation/tubulation, which requires work against tension. These results suggest that membrane tension, a parameter that is often not controlled in model membranes but is tightly controlled in biological cells, may be important in regulating protein binding and assembly and, hence, protein

  7. RIM Proteins Activate Vesicle Priming by Reversing Auto-Inhibitory Homodimerization of Munc13 (United States)

    Deng, Lunbin; Kaeser, Pascal S.; Xu, Wei; Südhof, Thomas C.


    At a synapse, the presynaptic active zone mediates synaptic vesicle exocytosis. RIM proteins are active-zone scaffolding molecules that – among others – mediate vesicle priming, and directly or indirectly interact with most other essential presynaptic proteins. In particular, the Zn2+-finger domain of RIMs binds to the C2A-domain of the priming factor Munc13, which forms a homodimer in the absence of RIM, but a heterodimer with it. Here we show that RIMs mediate vesicle priming not by coupling Munc13 to other active zone proteins as thought, but by directly activating Munc13. Specifically, we found that the isolated Zn2+-finger domain of RIMs autonomously promotes vesicle priming by binding to Munc13, thereby relieving Munc13 homodimerization. Strikingly, constitutively monomeric mutants of Munc13 rescued priming in RIM-deficient synapses, whereas wild-type Munc13 did not. Both mutant and wild-type Munc13, however, rescued priming in Munc13-deficient synapses. Thus, homodimerization of Munc13 inhibits its priming function, and RIMs activate priming by disrupting Munc13 homodimerization. PMID:21262469

  8. Dendrite-derived supernumerary axons on adult axotomized motor neurons possess proteins that are essential for the initiation and propagation of action potentials and synaptic vesicle release

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Meehan, Claire Francesca; MacDermid, Victoria E; Montague, Steven J


    on these processes matches the arrangement of these channels that is necessary for the initiation and conduction of action potentials. At terminal bouton-like structures they possess key proteins necessary for the release of synaptic vesicles (SV2 and synaptophysin). Thus, axon-like processes emanating from the tips...

  9. Synapse-Assembly Proteins Maintain Synaptic Vesicle Cluster Stability and Regulate Synaptic Vesicle Transport in Caenorhabditis elegans. (United States)

    Edwards, Stacey L; Yorks, Rosalina M; Morrison, Logan M; Hoover, Christopher M; Miller, Kenneth G


    The functional integrity of neurons requires the bidirectional active transport of synaptic vesicles (SVs) in axons. The kinesin motor KIF1A transports SVs from somas to stable SV clusters at synapses, while dynein moves them in the opposite direction. However, it is unclear how SV transport is regulated and how SVs at clusters interact with motor proteins. We addressed these questions by isolating a rare temperature-sensitive allele of Caenorhabditis elegans unc-104 (KIF1A) that allowed us to manipulate SV levels in axons and dendrites. Growth at 20° and 14° resulted in locomotion rates that were ∼3 and 50% of wild type, respectively, with similar effects on axonal SV levels. Corresponding with the loss of SVs from axons, mutants grown at 14° and 20° showed a 10- and 24-fold dynein-dependent accumulation of SVs in their dendrites. Mutants grown at 14° and switched to 25° showed an abrupt irreversible 50% decrease in locomotion and a 50% loss of SVs from the synaptic region 12-hr post-shift, with no further decreases at later time points, suggesting that the remaining clustered SVs are stable and resistant to retrograde removal by dynein. The data further showed that the synapse-assembly proteins SYD-1, SYD-2, and SAD-1 protected SV clusters from degradation by motor proteins. In syd-1, syd-2, and sad-1 mutants, SVs accumulate in an UNC-104-dependent manner in the distal axon region that normally lacks SVs. In addition to their roles in SV cluster stability, all three proteins also regulate SV transport. Copyright © 2015 by the Genetics Society of America.

  10. Engineering of vesicle trafficking improves heterologous protein secretion in Saccharomyces cerevisiae. (United States)

    Hou, Jin; Tyo, Keith; Liu, Zihe; Petranovic, Dina; Nielsen, Jens


    The yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae is a widely used platform for the production of heterologous proteins of medical or industrial interest. However, heterologous protein productivity is often restricted due to the limitations of the host strain. In the protein secretory pathway, the protein trafficking between different organelles is catalyzed by the soluble NSF (N-ethylmaleimide-sensitive factor) receptor (SNARE) complex and regulated by the Sec1/Munc18 (SM) proteins. In this study, we report that over-expression of the SM protein encoding genes SEC1 and SLY1, improves the protein secretion in S. cerevisiae. Engineering Sec1p, the SM protein that is involved in vesicle trafficking from Golgi to cell membrane, improves the secretion of heterologous proteins human insulin precursor and α-amylase, and also the secretion of an endogenous protein invertase. Enhancing Sly1p, the SM protein regulating the vesicle fusion from endoplasmic reticulum (ER) to Golgi, increases α-amylase production only. Our study demonstrates that strengthening the protein trafficking in ER-to-Golgi and Golgi-to-plasma membrane process is a novel secretory engineering strategy for improving heterologous protein production in S. cerevisiae. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  11. Synaptic vesicle protein 2b is expressed temporospatially in (pre)odontoblasts in developing molars. (United States)

    Yang, So-Young; Jeon, Soo-Kyung; Kang, Jee-Hae; Yoo, Hong-Il; Kim, Yoo-Seong; Moon, Jung-Sun; Kim, Min-Seok; Koh, Jung-Tae; Oh, Won-Mann; Kim, Sun-Hun


    The formation of dentin and enamel is initiated by the differentiation of odontogenic precursor cells into odontoblasts and ameloblasts, respectively. This study was performed to identify new molecules involved in the differentiation of odontogenic cells. The genes expressed differentially between the root stage (after the differentiation of odontogenic cells and dental hard-tissue formation) and the cap stage (before the differentiation of odontogenic cells and dental hard-tissue formation) were searched using differential display PCR. For the first time, synaptic vesicle protein (SV) 2b, an important transmembrane transporter of Ca(2+) -stimulated vesicle exocytosis, was identified as a differentially expressed molecule. Real-time PCR and western blotting revealed an increase in the transcriptional and translational levels of SV2b during or after the differentiation of odontogenic cells. Immunofluorescence revealed this molecule to be localized in not only fully differentiated odontoblasts but also in pre-odontoblasts before dentin matrix secretion. The expression pattern of the SV2a isoform was similar to that of the SV2b isoform, whereas the SV2c isoform showed a contrasting pattern of expression. After treatment with alendronate, an inhibitor of protein isoprenylation for the transport of secretory vesicles, the expression of SV2a and SV2b decreased, whereas that of SV2c increased. These results suggest that the SV2 isoforms are functional molecules of (pre)odontoblasts which may be involved in vesicle transport. © 2012 Eur J Oral Sci.

  12. Isolation of High-Purity Extracellular Vesicles by Extracting Proteins Using Aqueous Two-Phase System (United States)

    Kim, Jongmin; Shin, Hyunwoo; Kim, Jiyoon; Kim, Junho; Park, Jaesung


    We present a simple and rapid method to isolate extracellular vesicles (EVs) by using a polyethylene glycol/dextran aqueous two-phase system (ATPS). This system isolated more than ~75% of melanoma-derived EVs from a mixture of EVs and serum proteins. To increase the purity of EVs, a batch procedure was combined as additional steps to remove protein contaminants, and removed more than ~95% of the protein contaminants. We also performed RT-PCR and western blotting to verify the diagnostic applicability of the isolated EVs, and detected mRNA derived from melanoma cells and CD81 in isolated EVs. PMID:26090684

  13. Isolation of High-Purity Extracellular Vesicles by Extracting Proteins Using Aqueous Two-Phase System.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jongmin Kim

    Full Text Available We present a simple and rapid method to isolate extracellular vesicles (EVs by using a polyethylene glycol/dextran aqueous two-phase system (ATPS. This system isolated more than ~75% of melanoma-derived EVs from a mixture of EVs and serum proteins. To increase the purity of EVs, a batch procedure was combined as additional steps to remove protein contaminants, and removed more than ~95% of the protein contaminants. We also performed RT-PCR and western blotting to verify the diagnostic applicability of the isolated EVs, and detected mRNA derived from melanoma cells and CD81 in isolated EVs.

  14. Botulinum neurotoxin D uses synaptic vesicle protein SV2 and gangliosides as receptors.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lisheng Peng


    Full Text Available Botulinum neurotoxins (BoNTs include seven bacterial toxins (BoNT/A-G that target presynaptic terminals and act as proteases cleaving proteins required for synaptic vesicle exocytosis. Here we identified synaptic vesicle protein SV2 as the protein receptor for BoNT/D. BoNT/D enters cultured hippocampal neurons via synaptic vesicle recycling and can bind SV2 in brain detergent extracts. BoNT/D failed to bind and enter neurons lacking SV2, which can be rescued by expressing one of the three SV2 isoforms (SV2A/B/C. Localization of SV2 on plasma membranes mediated BoNT/D binding in both neurons and HEK293 cells. Furthermore, chimeric receptors containing the binding sites for BoNT/A and E, two other BoNTs that use SV2 as receptors, failed to mediate the entry of BoNT/D suggesting that BoNT/D binds SV2 via a mechanism distinct from BoNT/A and E. Finally, we demonstrated that gangliosides are essential for the binding and entry of BoNT/D into neurons and for its toxicity in vivo, supporting a double-receptor model for this toxin.

  15. Ca2+ Dependence of Synaptic Vesicle Endocytosis. (United States)

    Leitz, Jeremy; Kavalali, Ege T


    Ca(2+)-dependent synaptic vesicle recycling is essential for structural homeostasis of synapses and maintenance of neurotransmission. Although, the executive role of intrasynaptic Ca(2+) transients in synaptic vesicle exocytosis is well established, identifying the exact role of Ca(2+) in endocytosis has been difficult. In some studies, Ca(2+) has been suggested as an essential trigger required to initiate synaptic vesicle retrieval, whereas others manipulating synaptic Ca(2+) concentrations reported a modulatory role for Ca(2+) leading to inhibition or acceleration of endocytosis. Molecular studies of synaptic vesicle endocytosis, on the other hand, have consistently focused on the roles of Ca(2+)-calmodulin dependent phosphatase calcineurin and synaptic vesicle protein synaptotagmin as potential Ca(2+) sensors for endocytosis. Most studies probing the role of Ca(2+) in endocytosis have relied on measurements of synaptic vesicle retrieval after strong stimulation. Strong stimulation paradigms elicit fusion and retrieval of multiple synaptic vesicles and therefore can be affected by several factors besides the kinetics and duration of Ca(2+) signals that include the number of exocytosed vesicles and accumulation of released neurotransmitters thus altering fusion and retrieval processes indirectly via retrograde signaling. Studies monitoring single synaptic vesicle endocytosis may help resolve this conundrum as in these settings the impact of Ca(2+) on synaptic fusion probability can be uncoupled from its putative role on synaptic vesicle retrieval. Future experiments using these single vesicle approaches will help dissect the specific role(s) of Ca(2+) and its sensors in synaptic vesicle endocytosis. © The Author(s) 2015.

  16. Characterizing detergent mediated reconstitution of viral protein M2 in large unilamellar vesicles (United States)

    Freyre, Mariel; Grossman, Carl; Crouch, Catherine; Howard, Kathleen


    Influenza M2 is a model membrane protein whose function is to induce curvature and vesicle formation in the process of viral infection. To study embedded M2 in synthetic phospholipid vesicles (large unilamellar vesicles or LUVs), a concentration of detergent and buffer is optimized to balance protein solubility, proteolipid concentration, and LUV stability. Adding detergent also causes the LUVs to partially disassemble and form micelles, which warrants detergent removal to restore LUV integrity. We explore methods of measuring the coexistence of detergent micelles and LUVs to track the different phases of the system as detergent is removed. A combination of Fluorescence Correlation Spectroscopy, Dynamic Light Scattering, and chemical analysis are used to measure the properties of this system. With detergent/LUV number densities as high as 5 we find coexistence of micelles and LUVs at 50% to 60%. As the detergent is removed, the micelle concentration drops to lower than 30% while detergent levels drop to nearly zero. These results may indicate a polydispersed LUV size distribution after detergent mediated reconstitution. Supported by HHMI and Swarthmore College.

  17. Huntingtin-associated protein-1 is a synapsin I-binding protein regulating synaptic vesicle exocytosis and synapsin I trafficking. (United States)

    Mackenzie, Kimberly D; Lumsden, Amanda L; Guo, Feng; Duffield, Michael D; Chataway, Timothy; Lim, Yoon; Zhou, Xin-Fu; Keating, Damien J


    Huntingtin-associated protein-1 (HAP1) is involved in intracellular trafficking, vesicle transport, and membrane receptor endocytosis. However, despite such diverse functions, the role of HAP1 in the synaptic vesicle (SV) cycle in nerve terminals remains unclear. Here, we report that HAP1 functions in SV exocytosis, controls total SV turnover and the speed of vesicle fusion in nerve terminals and regulates glutamate release in cortical brain slices. We found that HAP1 interacts with synapsin I, an abundant neuronal phosphoprotein that associates with SVs during neurotransmitter release and regulates synaptic plasticity and neuronal development. The interaction between HAP1 with synapsin I was confirmed by reciprocal co-immunoprecipitation of the endogenous proteins. Furthermore, HAP1 co-localizes with synapsin I in cortical neurons as discrete puncta. Interestingly, we find that synapsin I localization is specifically altered in Hap1(-/-) cortical neurons without an effect on the localization of other SV proteins. This effect on synapsin I localization was not because of changes in the levels of synapsin I or its phosphorylation status in Hap1(-/-) brains. Furthermore, fluorescence recovery after photobleaching in transfected neurons expressing enhanced green fluorescent protein-synapsin Ia demonstrates that loss of HAP1 protein inhibits synapsin I transport. Thus, we demonstrate that HAP1 regulates SV exocytosis and may do so through binding to synapsin I. The Proposed mechanism of synapsin I transport mediated by HAP1 in neurons. HAP1 interacts with synapsin I, regulating the trafficking of synapsin I containing vesicles and/or transport packets, possibly through its engagement of microtubule motors. The absence of HAP1 reduces synapsin I transport and neuronal exocytosis. These findings provide insights into the processes of neuronal trafficking and synaptic signaling. © 2016 International Society for Neurochemistry.

  18. The SNARE protein vti1a functions in dense-core vesicle biogenesis

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Walter, Alexander M; Kurps, Julia; de Wit, Heidi


    The SNARE protein vti1a is proposed to drive fusion of intracellular organelles, but recent data also implicated vti1a in exocytosis. Here we show that vti1a is absent from mature secretory vesicles in adrenal chromaffin cells, but localizes to a compartment near the trans-Golgi network, partially...... overlapping with syntaxin-6. Exocytosis is impaired in vti1a null cells, partly due to fewer Ca(2+)-channels at the plasma membrane, partly due to fewer vesicles of reduced size and synaptobrevin-2 content. In contrast, release kinetics and Ca(2+)-sensitivity remain unchanged, indicating that the final fusion...... reaction leading to transmitter release is unperturbed. Additional deletion of the closest related SNARE, vti1b, does not exacerbate the vti1a phenotype, and vti1b null cells show no secretion defects, indicating that vti1b does not participate in exocytosis. Long-term re-expression of vti1a (days...

  19. Structure and function of ABCG2-rich extracellular vesicles mediating multidrug resistance.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vicky Goler-Baron


    Full Text Available Multidrug resistance (MDR is a major impediment to curative cancer chemotherapy. The ATP-Binding Cassette transporters ABCG2, ABCB1 and ABCC2 form a unique defense network against multiple structurally and functionally distinct chemotherapeutics, thereby resulting in MDR. Thus, deciphering novel mechanisms of MDR and their overcoming is a major goal of cancer research. Recently we have shown that overexpression of ABCG2 in the membrane of novel extracellular vesicles (EVs in breast cancer cells results in mitoxantrone resistance due to its dramatic sequestration in EVs. However, nothing is known about EVs structure, biogenesis and their ability to concentrate multiple antitumor agents. To this end, we here found that EVs are structural and functional homologues of bile canaliculi, are apically localized, sealed structures reinforced by an actin-based cytoskeleton and secluded from the extracellular milieu by the tight junction proteins occludin and ZO-1. Apart from ABCG2, ABCB1 and ABCC2 were also selectively targeted to the membrane of EVs. Moreover, Ezrin-Radixin-Moesin protein complex selectively localized to the border of the EVs membrane, suggesting a key role for the tethering of MDR pumps to the actin cytoskeleton. The ability of EVs to concentrate and sequester different antitumor drugs was also explored. Taking advantage of the endogenous fluorescence of anticancer drugs, we found that EVs-forming breast cancer cells display high level resistance to topotecan, imidazoacridinones and methotrexate via efficient intravesicular drug concentration hence sequestering them away from their cellular targets. Thus, we identified a new modality of anticancer drug compartmentalization and resistance in which multiple chemotherapeutics are actively pumped from the cytoplasm and highly concentrated within the lumen of EVs via a network of MDR transporters differentially targeted to the EVs membrane. We propose a composite model for the structure and

  20. Biochemical and structural features of extracellular vesicle-binding RNA aptamers (United States)

    Murakami, Kazuyoshi; Zhao, Jing; Yamasaki, Kazuhiko; Miyagishi, Makoto


    Extracellular vesicles are particles in mammalian body fluids that have attracted considerable attention as biomarkers for various diseases. In the present study, the authors isolated RNA aptamers with an affinity for extracellular vesicles from two library pools that encoded randomized sequences of different lengths. After the several rounds of selection, two conserved motifs are identified in the sequences that are obtained by next-generation sequencing. Most of the sequences were predicted to adopt a secondary structure that consisted of a non-conserved stem structure and a conserved loop sequence. Two minimal similar sequences are synthesized and confirmed the ability of these sequences to bind to extracellular vesicles. Circular dichroism spectroscopy and melting temperature analysis demonstrated that the aptamers were able to form a G-quadruplex structure in their loop regions and these structures were stabilized by potassium ions. Consistent with these structural data, the affinity of each aptamer for extracellular vesicles was dependent on potassium ions. The aptamers that were identified may be useful molecular tools for the development of diagnostic methods that utilize body fluids, such as blood, saliva and urine. PMID:28584632

  1. The Xylella fastidiosa PD1063 protein is secreted in association with outer membrane vesicles. (United States)

    Pierce, Brittany K; Voegel, Tanja; Kirkpatrick, Bruce C


    Xylella fastidiosa is a gram-negative, xylem-limited plant pathogenic bacterium that causes disease in a variety of economically important agricultural crops including Pierce's disease of grapevines. Xylella fastidiosa biofilms formed in the xylem vessels of plants play a key role in early colonization and pathogenicity by providing a protected niche and enhanced cell survival. Here we investigate the role of Xylella fastidiosa PD1063, the predicted ortholog of Xanthomonas oryzae pv. oryzae PXO_03968, which encodes an outer membrane protein. To assess the function of the Xylella fastidiosa ortholog, we created Xylella fastidiosa mutants deleted for PD1063 and then assessed biofilm formation, cell-cell aggregation and cell growth in vitro. We also assessed disease severity and pathogen titers in grapevines mechanically inoculated with the Xylella fastidiosa PD1063 mutant. We found a significant decrease in cell-cell aggregation among PD1063 mutants but no differences in cell growth, biofilm formation, disease severity or titers in planta. Based on the demonstration that Xanthomonas oryzae pv. oryzae PXO_03968 encodes an outer membrane protein, secreted in association with outer membrane vesicles, we predicted that PD1063 would also be secreted in a similar manner. Using anti-PD1063 antibodies, we found PD1063 in the supernatant and secreted in association with outer membrane vesicles. PD1063 purified from the supernatant, outer membrane fractions and outer membrane vesicles was 19.2 kD, corresponding to the predicted size of the processed protein. Our findings suggest Xylella fastidiosa PD1063 is not essential for development of Pierce's disease in Vitis vinifera grapevines although further research is required to determine the function of the PD1063 outer membrane protein in Xylella fastidiosa.

  2. Fusogenicity of Naja naja atra cardiotoxin-like basic protein on sphingomyelin vesicles containing oxidized phosphatidylcholine and cholesterol. (United States)

    Kao, Pei-Hsiu; Chen, Ying-Jung; Yang, Shin-Yi; Lin, Shinne-Ren; Hu, Wan-Ping; Chang, Long-Sen


    This study investigated the effect of oxidized phosphatidylcholine (oxPC) and cholesterol (Chol) on Naja naja atra cardiotoxin-like basic protein (CLBP)-induced fusion and leakage in sphingomyelin (SM) vesicles. Compared with those on PC/SM/Chol vesicles, CLBP showed a lower activity to induce membrane permeability but a higher fusogenicity on oxPC/SM/Chol vesicles. A reduction in inner-leaflet fusion elucidated that CLBP fusogenicity was not in parallel to its membrane-leakage activity on oxPC/SM/Chol vesicles. The lipid domain formed by Chol and SM supported CLBP fusogenicity on oxPC/SM/Chol vesicles, while oxPC altered the interacted mode of CLBP with oxPC/SM/Chol vesicles as evidenced by Fourier transform infrared spectra analyses and colorimetric phospholipid/polydiacetylene membrane assay. Although CLBP showed similar binding affinity with PC/SM/Chol and oxPC/SM/Chol vesicles, the binding capability of CLBP with PC/SM/Chol and oxPC/SM/Chol vesicles was affected differently by NaCl. This emphasized that CLBP adopted different membrane interaction modes upon binding with PC/SM/Chol and oxPC/SM/Chol vesicles. CLBP induced fusion in vesicles containing oxPC bearing the aldehyde group, and aldehyde scavenger methoxyamine abrogated the CLBP ability to induce oxPC/SM/Chol fusion. Taken together, our data indicate that Chol and oxPC bearing aldehyde group alter the CLBP membrane-binding mode, leading to fusogenicity promotion while reducing the membrane-damaging activity of CLBP.

  3. Characterization of membrane protein interactions in plasma membrane derived vesicles with quantitative imaging Förster resonance energy transfer. (United States)

    Sarabipour, Sarvenaz; Del Piccolo, Nuala; Hristova, Kalina


    Here we describe an experimental tool, termed quantitative imaging Förster resonance energy transfer (QI-FRET), that enables the quantitative characterization of membrane protein interactions. The QI-FRET methodology allows us to acquire binding curves and calculate association constants for complex membrane proteins in the native plasma membrane environment. The method utilizes FRET detection, and thus requires that the proteins of interest are labeled with florescent proteins, either FRET donors or FRET acceptors. Since plasma membranes of cells have complex topologies precluding the acquisition of two-dimensional binding curves, the FRET measurements are performed in plasma membrane derived vesicles that bud off cells as a result of chemical or osmotic stress. The results overviewed here are acquired in vesicles produced with an osmotic vesiculation buffer developed in our laboratory, which does not utilize harsh chemicals. The concentrations of the donor-labeled and the acceptor-labeled proteins are determined, along with the FRET efficiencies, in each vesicle. The experiments utilize transient transfection, such that a wide variety of concentrations is sampled. Then, data from hundreds of vesicles are combined to yield dimerization curves. Here we discuss recent findings about the dimerization of receptor tyrosine kinases (RTKs), membrane proteins that control cell growth and differentiation via lateral dimerization in the plasma membrane. We focus on the dimerization of fibroblast growth factor receptor 3 (FGFR3), a RTK that plays a critically important role in skeletal development. We study the role of different FGFR3 domains in FGFR3 dimerization in the absence of ligand, and we show that FGFR3 extracellular domains inhibit unliganded dimerization, while contacts between the juxtamembrane domains, which connect the transmembrane domains to the kinase domains, stabilize the unliganded FGFR3 dimers. Since FGFR3 has been documented to harbor many pathogenic

  4. Structure-directing star-shaped block copolymers: supramolecular vesicles for the delivery of anticancer drugs. (United States)

    Yang, Chuan; Liu, Shao Qiong; Venkataraman, Shrinivas; Gao, Shu Jun; Ke, Xiyu; Chia, Xin Tian; Hedrick, James L; Yang, Yi Yan


    Amphiphilic polycarbonate/PEG copolymer with a star-like architecture was designed to facilitate a unique supramolecular transformation of micelles to vesicles in aqueous solution for the efficient delivery of anticancer drugs. The star-shaped amphipilic block copolymer was synthesized by initiating the ring-opening polymerization of trimethylene carbonate (TMC) from methyl cholate through a combination of metal-free organo-catalytic living ring-opening polymerization and post-polymerization chain-end derivatization strategies. Subsequently, the self-assembly of the star-like polymer in aqueous solution into nanosized vesicles for anti-cancer drug delivery was studied. DOX was physically encapsulated into vesicles by dialysis and drug loading level was significant (22.5% in weight) for DOX. Importantly, DOX-loaded nanoparticles self-assembled from the star-like copolymer exhibited greater kinetic stability and higher DOX loading capacity than micelles prepared from cholesterol-initiated diblock analogue. The advantageous disparity is believed to be due to the transformation of micelles (diblock copolymer) to vesicles (star-like block copolymer) that possess greater core space for drug loading as well as the ability of such supramolecular structures to encapsulate DOX. DOX-loaded vesicles effectively inhibited the proliferation of 4T1, MDA-MB-231 and BT-474 cells, with IC50 values of 10, 1.5 and 1.0mg/L, respectively. DOX-loaded vesicles injected into 4T1 tumor-bearing mice exhibited enhanced accumulation in tumor tissue due to the enhanced permeation and retention (EPR) effect. Importantly, DOX-loaded vesicles demonstrated greater tumor growth inhibition than free DOX without causing significant body weight loss or cardiotoxicity. The unique ability of the star-like copolymer emanating from the methyl cholate core provided the requisite modification in the block copolymer interfacial curvature to generate vesicles of high loading capacity for DOX with significant

  5. Integrating Protein Engineering and Bioorthogonal Click Conjugation for Extracellular Vesicle Modulation and Intracellular Delivery. (United States)

    Wang, Ming; Altinoglu, Sarah; Takeda, Yuji S; Xu, Qiaobing


    Exosomes are small, cell-secreted vesicles that transfer proteins and genetic information between cells. This intercellular transmission regulates many physiological and pathological processes. Therefore, exosomes have emerged as novel biomarkers for disease diagnosis and as nanocarriers for drug delivery. Here, we report an easy-to-adapt and highly versatile methodology to modulate exosome composition and conjugate exosomes for intracellular delivery. Our strategy combines the metabolic labeling of newly synthesized proteins or glycan/glycoproteins of exosome-secreting cells with active azides and bioorthogonal click conjugation to modify and functionalize the exosomes. The azide-integrated can be conjugated to a variety of small molecules and proteins and can efficiently deliver conjugates into cells. The metabolic engineering of exosomes diversifies the chemistry of exosomes and expands the functions that can be introduced into exosomes, providing novel, powerful tools to study the roles of exosomes in biology and expand the biomedical potential of exosomes.

  6. Immunogenicity of recombinant class 1 protein from Neisseria meningitidis refolded into phospholipid vesicles and detergent. (United States)

    Niebla, O; Alvarez, A; Martín, A; Rodríguez, A; Delgado, M; Falcón, V; Guillén, G


    The possibility of eliciting bactericidal antibodies against a recombinant class 1 protein (P1) from Neisseria meningitidis, joined to the first 45 amino acids of the neisserial LpdA protein (PM82), was examined. P1 was produced in Escherichia coli as intracellular inclusion bodies, from which it was purified and reconstituted by (a) inclusion into phospholipid vesicles and detergent and (b) refolding in 0.1% SDS. When Balb/c mice were immunised, high titres of subtype-specific bactericidal antibodies against P1 were obtained in both cases. These results suggest that in spite of being a denaturing agent, it is possible to use SDS to reconstitute the P1 protein in a conformation that exposes the immunodominat regions.

  7. Structure of synaptophysin: a hexameric MARVEL-domain channel protein. (United States)

    Arthur, Christopher P; Stowell, Michael H B


    Synaptophysin I (SypI) is an archetypal member of the MARVEL-domain family of integral membrane proteins and one of the first synaptic vesicle proteins to be identified and cloned. Most all MARVEL-domain proteins are involved in membrane apposition and vesicle-trafficking events, but their precise role in these processes is unclear. We have purified mammalian SypI and determined its three-dimensional (3D) structure by using electron microscopy and single-particle 3D reconstruction. The hexameric structure resembles an open basket with a large pore and tenuous interactions within the cytosolic domain. The structure suggests a model for Synaptophysin's role in fusion and recycling that is regulated by known interactions with the SNARE machinery. This 3D structure of a MARVEL-domain protein provides a structural foundation for understanding the role of these important proteins in a variety of biological processes.

  8. Vps15p regulates the distribution of cup-shaped organelles containing the major eisosome protein Pil1p to the extracellular fraction required for endocytosis of extracellular vesicles carrying metabolic enzymes. (United States)

    Stein, Kathryn; Winters, Chelsea; Chiang, Hui-Ling


    Exosomes are small vesicles secreted from virtually every cell from bacteria to humans. Saccharomyces cerevisiae is a model system to study trafficking of small vesicles in response to changes in the environment. When yeast cells are grown in low glucose, vesicles carrying gluconeogenic enzymes are present as free vesicles and aggregated clusters in the cytoplasm. These vesicles are also secreted into the periplasm and account for more than 90% of total extracellular organelles, while less than 10% are larger 100-300 nm structures with unknown functions. When glucose is added to glucose-starved cells, secreted vesicles are endocytosed and then targeted to the vacuole. Recent secretomic studies indicated that more than 300 proteins involved in diverse biological functions are secreted during glucose starvation and endocytosed during glucose re-feeding. We hypothesised that extracellular vesicles are internalised using novel mechanisms independent of clathrin-mediated endocytosis. Our results showed that vesicles carrying metabolic enzymes were endocytosed at a fast rate, whereas vesicles carrying the heat shock protein Ssa1p were endocytosed at a slow rate. The PI3K regulator Vps15p is critical for the fast internalisation of extracellular vesicles. VPS15 regulates the distribution of the 100-300 nm organelles that contain the major eisosome protein Pil1p to the extracellular fraction. These Pil1p-containing structures were purified and showed unique cup-shape with their centres deeper than the peripheries. In the absence of VPS15, PIL1 or when PIL1 was mutated, the 100-300 nm structures were not observed in the extracellular fraction and the rapid internalisation of vesicles was impaired. We conclude that VPS15 regulates the distribution of the 100-300 nm Pil1p-containing organelles to the extracellular fraction required for fast endocytosis of vesicles carrying metabolic enzymes. This work provides the first evidence showing that Pil1p displayed unique

  9. Extracellular vesicle-derived protein from Bifidobacterium longum alleviates food allergy through mast cell suppression. (United States)

    Kim, Jung-Hwan; Jeun, Eun-Ji; Hong, Chun-Pyo; Kim, Seong-Hoon; Jang, Min Seong; Lee, Eun-Jung; Moon, Sook Jin; Yun, Chang Ho; Im, Sin-Hyeog; Jeong, Seok-Geun; Park, Beom-Young; Kim, Kyong-Tai; Seoh, Ju-Young; Kim, Yoon-Keun; Oh, Sung-Jong; Ham, Jun-Sang; Yang, Bo-Gie; Jang, Myoung Ho


    The incidence of food allergies has increased dramatically during the last decade. Recently, probiotics have been studied for the prevention and treatment of allergic disease. We examined whether Bifidobacterium longum KACC 91563 and Enterococcus faecalis KACC 91532 have the capacity to suppress food allergies. B longum KACC 91563 and E faecalis KACC 91532 were administered to BALB/c wild-type mice, in which food allergy was induced by using ovalbumin and alum. Food allergy symptoms and various immune responses were assessed. B longum KACC 91563, but not E faecalis KACC 91532, alleviated food allergy symptoms. Extracellular vesicles of B longum KACC 91563 bound specifically to mast cells and induced apoptosis without affecting T-cell immune responses. Furthermore, injection of family 5 extracellular solute-binding protein, a main component of extracellular vesicles, into mice markedly reduced the occurrence of diarrhea in a mouse food allergy model. B longum KACC 91563 induces apoptosis of mast cells specifically and alleviates food allergy symptoms. Accordingly, B longum KACC 91563 and family 5 extracellular solute-binding protein exhibit potential as therapeutic approaches for food allergies. Copyright © 2015 American Academy of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  10. Inhibition of protein kinase C affects on mode of synaptic vesicle exocytosis due to cholesterol depletion

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Petrov, Alexey M., E-mail:; Zakyrjanova, Guzalija F., E-mail:; Yakovleva, Anastasia A., E-mail:; Zefirov, Andrei L., E-mail:


    Highlights: • We examine the involvement of PKC in MCD induced synaptic vesicle exocytosis. • PKC inhibitor does not decrease the effect MCD on MEPP frequency. • PKC inhibitor prevents MCD induced FM1-43 unloading. • PKC activation may switch MCD induced exocytosis from kiss-and-run to a full mode. • Inhibition of phospholipase C does not lead to similar change in exocytosis. - Abstract: Previous studies demonstrated that depletion of membrane cholesterol by 10 mM methyl-beta-cyclodextrin (MCD) results in increased spontaneous exocytosis at both peripheral and central synapses. Here, we investigated the role of protein kinase C in the enhancement of spontaneous exocytosis at frog motor nerve terminals after cholesterol depletion using electrophysiological and optical methods. Inhibition of the protein kinase C by myristoylated peptide and chelerythrine chloride prevented MCD-induced increases in FM1-43 unloading, whereas the frequency of spontaneous postsynaptic events remained enhanced. The increase in FM1-43 unloading still could be observed if sulforhodamine 101 (the water soluble FM1-43 quencher that can pass through the fusion pore) was added to the extracellular solution. This suggests a possibility that exocytosis of synaptic vesicles under these conditions could occur through the kiss-and-run mechanism with the formation of a transient fusion pore. Inhibition of phospholipase C did not lead to similar change in MCD-induced exocytosis.

  11. Vesicle-associated membrane protein 2 mediates trafficking of {alpha}5{beta}1 integrin to the plasma membrane

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hasan, Nazarul [Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, University of Louisville School of Medicine, 319 Abraham Flexner Way, Room 515, Louisville, KY 40202 (United States); Hu, Chuan, E-mail: [Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, University of Louisville School of Medicine, 319 Abraham Flexner Way, Room 515, Louisville, KY 40202 (United States)


    Integrins are major receptors for cell adhesion to the extracellular matrix (ECM). As transmembrane proteins, the levels of integrins at the plasma membrane or the cell surface are ultimately determined by the balance between two vesicle trafficking events: endocytosis of integrins at the plasma membrane and exocytosis of the vesicles that transport integrins. Here, we report that vesicle-associated membrane protein 2 (VAMP2), a SNARE protein that mediates vesicle fusion with the plasma membrane, is involved in the trafficking of {alpha}5{beta}1 integrin. VAMP2 was present on vesicles containing endocytosed {beta}1 integrin. Small interfering RNA (siRNA) silencing of VAMP2 markedly reduced cell surface {alpha}5{beta}1 and inhibited cell adhesion and chemotactic migration to fibronectin, the ECM ligand of {alpha}5{beta}1, without altering cell surface expression of {alpha}2{beta}1 integrin or {alpha}3{beta}1 integrin. By contrast, silencing of VAMP8, another SNARE protein, had no effect on cell surface expression of the integrins or cell adhesion to fibronectin. In addition, VAMP2-mediated trafficking is involved in cell adhesion to collagen but not to laminin. Consistent with disruption of integrin functions in cell proliferation and survival, VAMP2 silencing diminished proliferation and triggered apoptosis. Collectively, these data indicate that VAMP2 mediates the trafficking of {alpha}5{beta}1 integrin to the plasma membrane and VAMP2-dependent integrin trafficking is critical in cell adhesion, migration and survival.

  12. The structure and function of endophilin proteins

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kjaerulff, Ole; Brodin, Lennart; Jung, Anita


    Members of the BAR domain protein superfamily are essential elements of cellular traffic. Endophilins are among the best studied BAR domain proteins. They have a prominent function in synaptic vesicle endocytosis (SVE), receptor trafficking and apoptosis, and in other processes that require...... remodeling of the membrane structure. Here, we discuss the role of endophilins in these processes and summarize novel insights into the molecular aspects of endophilin function. Also, we discuss phosphorylation of endophilins and how this and other mechanisms may contribute to disease....

  13. Urinary extracellular vesicles as reservoirs of altered proteins during the pathogenesis of polycystic kidney disease. (United States)

    Pocsfalvi, Gabriella; Raj, Delfin A A; Fiume, Immacolata; Vilasi, Annalisa; Trepiccione, Francesco; Capasso, Giovambattista


    Recent findings indicate that urinary extracellular vesicles (EVs) might reflect the pathophysiological state of urinary system; and that EVs-induced ciliary signaling is a possible mechanism of intercellular communication within the tract. Here, we aimed to analyze the protein expression of urinary EVs during autosomal dominant polycystic kidney disease (ADPKD). EVs were isolated from pooled urine samples of healthy control and ADPKD patients at two different stages of the disease and under tolvaptan treatment using the double-cushion ultracentrifugation method. Proteins were identified and quantified by iTRAQ and multidimensional protein identification technology (MudPIT)-based quantitative proteomics. Quantitative analyses identified 83 differentially expressed EV proteins. Many of these have apical membrane origin and are involved in signal transduction pathways of primary cilia, Ca(2+) -activated signaling, cell-cycle regulation, and cell differentiation. The reduced AQP-2 and the increased APO-A1 levels observed in all ADPKD-affected groups may reflects the impaired renal concentrating capability of these patients and correlated with estimated glomerular filtration rate decline. The levels of some upregulated proteins involved in Ca(2+) -activated signaling declined upon tolvaptan treatment. The results obtained suggest that the quantitative proteomics of urinary EVs might be useful to monitor proteins difficult to access noninvasively, and thus advance our understanding of urinary tract physiology and pathology. © 2015 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  14. Motor neuron disease-associated mutant vesicle-associated membrane protein-associated protein (VAP) B recruits wild-type VAPs into endoplasmic reticulum-derived tubular aggregates

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Teuling, Eva; Ahmed, Suaad; Haasdijk, Elize; Demmers, Jeroen; Steinmetz, Michel O; Akhmanova, Anna; Jaarsma, Dick; Hoogenraad, Casper C


    The vesicle-associated membrane protein-associated proteins (VAPs) VAPA and VAPB interact with lipid-binding proteins carrying a short motif containing two phenylalanines in an acidic tract (FFAT motif) and targets them to the cytosolic surface of the endoplasmic reticulum (ER). A genetic mutation

  15. Glomerular expression of plasmalemmal vesicle-associated protein-1 in patients with transplant glomerulopathy. (United States)

    Yamamoto, I; Horita, S; Takahashi, T; Tanabe, K; Fuchinoue, S; Teraoka, S; Hattori, M; Yamaguchi, Y


    Transplant glomerulopathy (TG) is a prominent feature of chronic rejection that is characterized by double contours of the glomerular capillaries (GC). In this report, we demonstrate that one of the histopathological features of TG is a phenotypic change of glomerular endothelial cells which is illustrated by increased caveolae formation. To verify the endothelial changes in this disease, we examined the expression of plasmalemmal vesicle-associated protein-1 (PV-1), a glycoprotein associated with plasmalemmal vesicles (caveolae), in the glomeruli of TG patients using pathologische anatomie Leiden-endothelium (PAL-E) antibody. Twenty-six cases of chronic allograft nephropathy (CAN) with TG were examined, compared with 16 cases of CAN without TG, type I MPGN (4 cases), and transplant glomerulitis (8 cases). Overall, 24 of 26 (92.3%), 4 of 16 (25%), 0 of 4, 0 of 8 cases were PAL-E-positive for GC, respectively. Further, the extent of glomerular PAL-E expression was positively correlated with both the grade of TG (rs= 0.72, p = 0.0003) and proteinuria (g/day) (rs= 0.51, p = 0.02). A correlation was not observed between glomerular PAL-E positivity and peritubular capillary C4d deposits (Yetes chi = 0.23, p = 0.89). In summary, the present study demonstrates expression of PV-1 in the GC of TG which is correlated with the grade of TG and proteinuria.

  16. Identification of the antiepileptic racetam binding site in the vesicle synaptic protein 2A by molecular dynamics and docking simulations

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    José eCorrea-Basurto


    Full Text Available Synaptic vesicle protein 2A (SV2A is an integral membrane protein necessary for the proper function of the central nervous system (CNS and is associated to the physiopathology of epilepsy. SV2A is the molecular target of the anti-epileptic drug levetiracetam (LEV and its racetam analogues. The racetam binding site in SV2A and the non-covalent interactions between racetams and SV2A are currently unknown; therefore, an in silico study was performed to explore these issues. Since SV2A has not been structurally characterized with X-ray crystallography or nuclear magnetic resonance, a three-dimensional (3D model was built. The model was refined by performing a molecular dynamics simulation (MDS and the interactions of SV2A with the racetams were determined by docking studies. A reliable 3D model of SV2A was obtained; it reached structural equilibrium during the last 15 ns of the MDS (50 ns with remaining structural motions in the N-terminus and long cytoplasmic loop. The docking studies revealed that hydrophobic interactions and hydrogen bonds participate importantly in ligand recognition within the binding site. Residues T456, S665, W666, D670 and L689 were important for racetam binding within the trans-membrane hydrophilic core of SV2A. Identifying the racetam binding site within SV2A should facilitate the synthesis of suitable radio-ligands to study treatment response and possibly epilepsy progression.

  17. Identification of the antiepileptic racetam binding site in the synaptic vesicle protein 2A by molecular dynamics and docking simulations. (United States)

    Correa-Basurto, José; Cuevas-Hernández, Roberto I; Phillips-Farfán, Bryan V; Martínez-Archundia, Marlet; Romo-Mancillas, Antonio; Ramírez-Salinas, Gema L; Pérez-González, Óscar A; Trujillo-Ferrara, José; Mendoza-Torreblanca, Julieta G


    Synaptic vesicle protein 2A (SV2A) is an integral membrane protein necessary for the proper function of the central nervous system and is associated to the physiopathology of epilepsy. SV2A is the molecular target of the anti-epileptic drug levetiracetam and its racetam analogs. The racetam binding site in SV2A and the non-covalent interactions between racetams and SV2A are currently unknown; therefore, an in silico study was performed to explore these issues. Since SV2A has not been structurally characterized with X-ray crystallography or nuclear magnetic resonance, a three-dimensional (3D) model was built. The model was refined by performing a molecular dynamics simulation (MDS) and the interactions of SV2A with the racetams were determined by docking studies. A reliable 3D model of SV2A was obtained; it reached structural equilibrium during the last 15 ns of the MDS (50 ns) with remaining structural motions in the N-terminus and long cytoplasmic loop. The docking studies revealed that hydrophobic interactions and hydrogen bonds participate importantly in ligand recognition within the binding site. Residues T456, S665, W666, D670 and L689 were important for racetam binding within the trans-membrane hydrophilic core of SV2A. Identifying the racetam binding site within SV2A should facilitate the synthesis of suitable radio-ligands to study treatment response and possibly epilepsy progression.

  18. Proteomics analysis of vesicles isolated from plasma and urine of prostate cancer patients using a multiplex, aptamer-based protein array

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Joanne Louise Welton


    Full Text Available Proteomics analysis of biofluid-derived vesicles holds enormous potential for discovering non-invasive disease markers. Obtaining vesicles of sufficient quality and quantity for profiling studies has, however, been a major problem, as samples are often replete with co-isolated material that can interfere with the identification of genuine low abundance, vesicle components. Here, we used a combination of ultracentrifugation and size-exclusion chromatography to isolate and analyse vesicles of plasma or urine origin. We describe a sample-handling workflow that gives reproducible, quality vesicle isolations sufficient for subsequent protein profiling. Using a semi-quantitative aptamer-based protein array, we identified around 1,000 proteins, of which almost 400 were present at comparable quantities in plasma versus urine vesicles. Significant differences were, however, apparent with elements like HSP90, integrin αVβ5 and Contactin-1 more prevalent in urinary vesicles, while hepatocyte growth factor activator, prostate-specific antigen–antichymotrypsin complex and many others were more abundant in plasma vesicles. This was also applied to a small set of specimens collected from men with metastatic prostate cancer, highlighting several proteins with the potential to indicate treatment refractory disease. The study provides a practical platform for furthering protein profiling of vesicles in prostate cancer, and, hopefully, many other disease scenarios.

  19. Mesoscopic Structure in the Chain-Melting Regime of Anionic Phospholipid Vesicles: DMPG (United States)

    Riske, K. A.; Amaral, L. Q.; Döbereiner, H.-G.; Lamy, M. T.


    In a range of low ionic strength, aqueous dispersions of the anionic phospholipid DMPG (dimyristoylphosphatidylglycerol) have a transparent intermediate phase (IP, between \\documentclass[12pt]{minimal} \\usepackage{amsmath} \\usepackage{wasysym} \\usepackage{amsfonts} \\usepackage{amssymb} \\usepackage{amsbsy} \\usepackage{mathrsfs} \\setlength{\\oddsidemargin}{-69pt} \\begin{document} \\begin{equation*}T_{{\\mathrm{m}}}^{{\\mathrm{on}}}{\\cong}20{^\\circ}{\\mathrm{C}}\\end{equation*}\\end{document} and \\documentclass[12pt]{minimal} \\usepackage{amsmath} \\usepackage{wasysym} \\usepackage{amsfonts} \\usepackage{amssymb} \\usepackage{amsbsy} \\usepackage{mathrsfs} \\setlength{\\oddsidemargin}{-69pt} \\begin{document} \\begin{equation*}T_{{\\mathrm{m}}}^{{\\mathrm{off}}}{\\cong}30{^\\circ}{\\mathrm{C}}\\end{equation*}\\end{document}) between the turbid gel and fluid membrane phases, evidenced in turbidity data. Small angle x-ray scattering results on DMPG dispersions show that, besides the bilayer peak present in all phases, a peak corresponding to a mesoscopic structure at ∼400 Å is detected only in IP. The dependence of this peak position on DMPG concentration suggests a correlation in the bilayer plane, consistent with the stability of vesicles in IP. Moreover, observation of giant DMPG vesicles with phase contrast light microscopy show that vesicles “disappear” upon cooling below \\documentclass[12pt]{minimal} \\usepackage{amsmath} \\usepackage{wasysym} \\usepackage{amsfonts} \\usepackage{amssymb} \\usepackage{amsbsy} \\usepackage{mathrsfs} \\setlength{\\oddsidemargin}{-69pt} \\begin{document} \\begin{equation*}T_{{\\mathrm{m}}}^{{\\mathrm{off}}}\\end{equation*}\\end{document} and “reappear” after reheating. This further proves that although vesicles cannot be visualized in IP, their overall structure is maintained. We propose that the IP in the melting regime corresponds to unilamellar vesicles with perforations, a model which is consistent with all

  20. Acinetobacter baumannii outer membrane vesicles elicit a potent innate immune response via membrane proteins. (United States)

    Jun, So Hyun; Lee, Jung Hwa; Kim, Bo Ra; Kim, Seung Il; Park, Tae In; Lee, Je Chul; Lee, Yoo Chul


    Acinetobacter baumannii is increasingly becoming a major nosocomial pathogen. This opportunistic pathogen secretes outer membrane vesicles (OMVs) that interact with host cells. The aim of this study was to investigate the ability of A. baumannii OMVs to elicit a pro-inflammatory response in vitro and the immunopathology in response to A. baumannii OMVs in vivo. OMVs derived from A. baumannii ATCC 19606(T) induced expression of pro-inflammatory cytokine genes, interleukin (IL)-1β and IL-6, and chemokine genes, IL-8, macrophage inflammatory protein-1α, and monocyte chemoattractant protein-1, in epithelial cells in a dose-dependent manner. Disintegration of OMV membrane with ethylenediaminetetraacetic acid resulted in low expression of pro-inflammatory cytokine genes, as compared with the response to intact OMVs. In addition, proteinase K-treated A. baumannii OMVs did not induce significant increase in expression of pro-inflammatory cytokine genes above the basal level, suggesting that the surface-exposed membrane proteins in intact OMVs are responsible for pro-inflammatory response. Early inflammatory processes, such as vacuolization and detachment of epithelial cells and neutrophilic infiltration, were clearly observed in lungs of mice injected with A. baumannii OMVs. Our data demonstrate that OMVs produced by A. baumannii elicit a potent innate immune response, which may contribute to immunopathology of the infected host.

  1. Serum-free culture alters the quantity and protein composition of neuroblastoma-derived extracellular vesicles

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jinghuan Li


    Full Text Available Extracellular vesicles (EVs play a significant role in cell–cell communication in numerous physiological processes and pathological conditions, and offer promise as novel biomarkers and therapeutic agents for genetic diseases. Many recent studies have described different molecular mechanisms that contribute to EV biogenesis and release from cells. However, little is known about how external stimuli such as cell culture conditions can affect the quantity and content of EVs. While N2a neuroblastoma cells cultured in serum-free (OptiMEM conditions did not result in EVs with significant biophysical or size differences compared with cells cultured in serum-containing (pre-spun conditions, the quantity of isolated EVs was greatly increased. Moreover, the expression levels of certain vesicular proteins (e.g. small GTPases, G-protein complexes, mRNA processing proteins and splicing factors, some of which were previously reported to be involved in EV biogenesis, were found to be differentially expressed in EVs under different culture conditions. These data, therefore, contribute to the understanding of how extracellular factors and intracellular molecular pathways affect the composition and release of EVs.

  2. Vesicle amine transport protein-1 (VAT-1) is upregulated in glioblastomas and promotes migration. (United States)

    Mertsch, S; Becker, M; Lichota, A; Paulus, W; Senner, V


    Diffuse invasion of single-glioma cells is the main obstacle to successful therapy of these tumours. After identifying vesicle amine transport protein-1 (VAT-1) as being upregulated in invasive human gliomas, we study its possible function in glioblastoma cell migration. Based on data obtained from previous oligonucleotide arrays, we investigated expression of VAT-1 in glioblastoma tissue and cell lines on mRNA levels using reverse transcriptase PCR. Furthermore, we examined the amount and localization of VAT-1 protein using immunoblotting and immunohistochemistry. Using small interfering RNA technology we repressed VAT-1 expression in human glioma cell lines and analysed their migration using wound healing and transwell migration assays. Increased VAT-1 mRNA and protein levels were found in glioblastoma tissues and cell lines compared with normal human brain. Small interfering RNA-mediated VAT-1 knockdown led to significantly reduced migration of human glioma cells. VAT-1 is overexpressed in glioblastomas and functionally involved in glioma cell migration, representing a new component involved in glioma invasion

  3. The neurosecretory vesicle protein phogrin functions as a phosphatidylinositol phosphatase to regulate insulin secretion. (United States)

    Caromile, Leslie A; Oganesian, Anush; Coats, Scott A; Seifert, Ronald A; Bowen-Pope, Daniel F


    Phogrin is a transmembrane protein expressed in cells with stimulus-coupled peptide hormone secretion, including pancreatic beta cells, in which it is localized to the membrane of insulin-containing dense-core vesicles. By sequence, phogrin is a member of the family of receptor-like protein-tyrosine phosphatases, but it contains substitutions in conserved catalytic sequences, and no significant enzymatic activity for phogrin has ever been reported. We report here that phogrin is able to dephosphorylate specific inositol phospholipids, including phosphatidylinositol (PI) 3-phosphate and PI 4,5-diphosphate but not PI 3,4,5-trisphosphate. The phosphatidylinositol phosphatase (PIPase) activity of phogrin was measurable but low when evaluated by the ability of a catalytic domain fusion protein to hydrolyze soluble short-chain phosphatidylinositol phospholipids. Unlike most PIPases, which are cytoplasmic proteins that associate with membranes, mature phogrin is a transmembrane protein. When the transmembrane form of phogrin was overexpressed in mammalian cells, it reduced plasma membrane phosphatidylinositol 4,5-disphosphate levels in a dose-dependent manner. When purified and assayed in vitro, the transmembrane form had a specific activity of 142 mol/min/mol, 75-fold more active than the catalytic domain fusion protein and comparable with the specific activities of the other PIPases. The PIPase activity of phogrin depended on the catalytic site cysteine and correlated with effects on glucose-stimulated insulin secretion. We propose that phogrin functions as a phosphatidylinositol phosphatase that contributes to maintaining subcellular differences in levels of PIP that are important for regulating stimulus-coupled exocytosis of insulin.

  4. Prions on the run: How extracellular vesicles serve as delivery vehicles for self-templating protein aggregates. (United States)

    Liu, Shu; Hossinger, André; Göbbels, Sarah; Vorberg, Ina M


    Extracellular vesicles (EVs) are actively secreted, membrane-bound communication vehicles that exchange biomolecules between cells. EVs also serve as dissemination vehicles for pathogens, including prions, proteinaceous infectious agents that cause transmissible spongiform encephalopathies (TSEs) in mammals. Increasing evidence accumulates that diverse protein aggregates associated with common neurodegenerative diseases are packaged into EVs as well. Vesicle-mediated intercellular transmission of protein aggregates can induce aggregation of homotypic proteins in acceptor cells and might thereby contribute to disease progression. Our knowledge of how protein aggregates are sorted into EVs and how these vesicles adhere to and fuse with target cells is limited. Here we review how TSE prions exploit EVs for intercellular transmission and compare this to the transmission behavior of self-templating cytosolic protein aggregates derived from the yeast prion domain Sup 35 NM. Artificial NM prions are non-toxic to mammalian cell cultures and do not cause loss-of-function phenotypes. Importantly, NM particles are also secreted in association with exosomes that horizontally transmit the prion phenotype to naive bystander cells, a process that can be monitored with high accuracy by automated high throughput confocal microscopy. The high abundance of mammalian proteins with amino acid stretches compositionally similar to yeast prion domains makes the NM cell model an attractive model to study self-templating and dissemination properties of proteins with prion-like domains in the mammalian context.

  5. Interaction of insulin with SDS/CTAB catanionic Vesicles

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Tah, Bidisha; Pal, Prabir; Talapatra, G.B., E-mail:


    In the present study, a novel method was used for entrapping the protein, insulin into the catanionic SDS/CTAB vesicle membrane. The anionic SDS and cationic CTAB formed catanionic vesicles at particular concentration (35:65 by volume). In this study, vesicle membrane can be considered as model membrane. The vesicle formation and entrapment efficiency depend on the pH of the aqueous solution. The insulin molecules have attached with the vesicular membrane at pH 7.0. However, at acidic pH, the vesicles were ruptured and the insulin did not entrap into the vesicle membrane, whereas at alkaline pH insulin became fibriller. The scanning electron microscope (SEM), Dynamic light scattering (DLS), and Zeta potential studies established the self-assembled structure formation of insulin and catanionic vesicles. To know the protein confirmations, Circular dichroism (CD) was also employed. The temperature dependent steady state and time resolved emission spectroscopy show that at room temperature (25 °C), apart from the 305 nm tyrosine fluorescence, a new emission peak at 450 nm was observed only in case of insulin-vesicle system, and was assigned as the tyrosine phosphorescence. This phosphorescence peak is the signature of the entrapment of insulin into the vesicle membrane. Highlights: • SDS-CTAB based catanionic vesicle has been fabricated. • Insulin has been successfully immobilized on these vesicles. • Immobilized insulin shows room temperature phosphorescence.

  6. Thermodynamics and Structural Evolution during a Reversible Vesicle-Micelle Transition of a Vitamin-Derived Bolaamphiphile Induced by Sodium Cholate. (United States)

    Tian, Jun-Nan; Ge, Bing-Qiang; Shen, Yun-Feng; He, Yu-Xuan; Chen, Zhong-Xiu


    Interaction of endogenous sodium cholate (SC) with dietary amphiphiles would induce structural evolution of the self-assembled aggregates, which inevitably affects the hydrolysis of fat in the gut. Current work mainly focused on the interaction of bile salts with classical double-layered phospholipid vesicles. In this paper, the thermodynamics and structural evolution during the interaction of SC with novel unilamellar vesicles formed from vitamin-derived zwitterionic bolaamphiphile (DDO) were characterized. It was revealed that an increased temperature and the presence of NaCl resulted in narrowed micelle-vesicle coexistence and enlarged the vesicle region. The coexistence of micelles and vesicles mainly came from the interaction of monomeric SC with DDO vesicles, whereas micellar SC contributed to the total solubilization of DDO vesicles. This research may enrich the thermodynamic mechanism behind the structure transition of the microaggregates formed by amphiphiles in the gut. It will also contribute to the design of food formulation and drug delivery system.

  7. Inhibition of protein kinase C affects on mode of synaptic vesicle exocytosis due to cholesterol depletion. (United States)

    Petrov, Alexey M; Zakyrjanova, Guzalija F; Yakovleva, Anastasia A; Zefirov, Andrei L


    Previous studies demonstrated that depletion of membrane cholesterol by 10mM methyl-beta-cyclodextrin (MCD) results in increased spontaneous exocytosis at both peripheral and central synapses. Here, we investigated the role of protein kinase C in the enhancement of spontaneous exocytosis at frog motor nerve terminals after cholesterol depletion using electrophysiological and optical methods. Inhibition of the protein kinase C by myristoylated peptide and chelerythrine chloride prevented MCD-induced increases in FM1-43 unloading, whereas the frequency of spontaneous postsynaptic events remained enhanced. The increase in FM1-43 unloading still could be observed if sulforhodamine 101 (the water soluble FM1-43 quencher that can pass through the fusion pore) was added to the extracellular solution. This suggests a possibility that exocytosis of synaptic vesicles under these conditions could occur through the kiss-and-run mechanism with the formation of a transient fusion pore. Inhibition of phospholipase C did not lead to similar change in MCD-induced exocytosis. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  8. The transbilayer movement of phosphatidylcholine in vesicles reconstituted with intrinsic proteins from the human erythrocyte membrane

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Gerritsen, W.J.; Henricks, P.A.J.; Kruijff, B. de; Deenen, L.L.M. van


    Vesicles have been prepared from 18 : 1c/18 : 1c-phosphatidylcholine with or without purified glycophorin or partially purified band 3 (obtained by organomercurial gel chromatography). The vesicles have been characterized by freeze-fracture electron microscopy, binding studies to DEAE-cellulose,

  9. Streptococcus mutans Extracellular DNA Is Upregulated during Growth in Biofilms, Actively Released via Membrane Vesicles, and Influenced by Components of the Protein Secretion Machinery (United States)

    Liao, Sumei; Klein, Marlise I.; Heim, Kyle P.; Fan, Yuwei; Bitoun, Jacob P.; Ahn, San-Joon; Burne, Robert A.; Koo, Hyun; Brady, L. Jeannine


    Streptococcus mutans, a major etiological agent of human dental caries, lives primarily on the tooth surface in biofilms. Limited information is available concerning the extracellular DNA (eDNA) as a scaffolding matrix in S. mutans biofilms. This study demonstrates that S. mutans produces eDNA by multiple avenues, including lysis-independent membrane vesicles. Unlike eDNAs from cell lysis that were abundant and mainly concentrated around broken cells or cell debris with floating open ends, eDNAs produced via the lysis-independent pathway appeared scattered but in a structured network under scanning electron microscopy. Compared to eDNA production of planktonic cultures, eDNA production in 5- and 24-h biofilms was increased by >3- and >1.6-fold, respectively. The addition of DNase I to growth medium significantly reduced biofilm formation. In an in vitro adherence assay, added chromosomal DNA alone had a limited effect on S. mutans adherence to saliva-coated hydroxylapatite beads, but in conjunction with glucans synthesized using purified glucosyltransferase B, the adherence was significantly enhanced. Deletion of sortase A, the transpeptidase that covalently couples multiple surface-associated proteins to the cell wall peptidoglycan, significantly reduced eDNA in both planktonic and biofilm cultures. Sortase A deficiency did not have a significant effect on membrane vesicle production; however, the protein profile of the mutant membrane vesicles was significantly altered, including reduction of adhesin P1 and glucan-binding proteins B and C. Relative to the wild type, deficiency of protein secretion and membrane protein insertion machinery components, including Ffh, YidC1, and YidC2, also caused significant reductions in eDNA. PMID:24748612

  10. Large GLUT4 vesicles are stationary while locally and reversibly depleted during transient insulin stimulation of skeletal muscle of living mice: imaging analysis of GLUT4-enhanced green fluorescent protein vesicle dynamics

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lauritzen, Hans P M M; Galbo, Henrik; Brandauer, Josef


    OBJECTIVE: Insulin stimulates glucose transport in skeletal muscle by GLUT4 translocation from intracellular compartments to sarcolemma and t-tubules. We studied in living animals the recruitment of GLUT4 vesicles in more detail than previously done and, for the first time, analyzed the steady......-state recycling and subsequent re-internalization of GLUT4 on an insulin bolus. RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODS: A confocal imaging technique was used in GLUT4-enhanced green fluorescent protein-transfected superficial muscle fibers in living mice. RESULTS: During the first 30 min of insulin stimulation, very few...... superficially or deeply located GLUT4 storage vesicles (>1 microm) moved in toto. Rather, big vesicles were stationary in their original position at sarcolemma or t-tubules and were locally depleted of GLUT4 by budding off of smaller vesicles. Photobleaching experiments revealed that during initial...

  11. Monodisperse structured multi-vesicle microencapsulation using flow-focusing and controlled disturbance. (United States)

    Bocanegra, Rodrigo; Luis Sampedro, José; Gañán-Calvo, Alfonso; Marquez, Manuel


    A method to produce monodisperse structured microcapsules in the diameter range from 10-100 microm is here presented. Flow-focusing is a well known technique whereby a steady capillary micro-jet is generated by the action of a highly accelerated co-flowing stream forced through a small orifice. The micro-jet breaks up owing to capillary instability, giving rise to droplets with a narrow size distribution. In the present study, flow-focusing gives rise not to simple but to compound capillary jets. At break-up, under suitable control parameters, such jets give rise to microcapsules where an outer liquid (shell liquid) surrounds a core liquid integrated by one or more vesicles. Furthermore, under adequate stimulation combining a sinusoidal signal with intermittent pulses, the jet break-up can be controlled. Highly monodisperse microcapsules are produced; fundamental geometric parameters (main diameter, shell thickness or number of cores) are reliably controlled. Rather than using a gas flow to focus the concentric stream of two immiscible liquids, this study has investigated in some detail the evolution of a concentric stream of three immiscible liquids forced through a small orifice. The selection of the surface tension coefficients between the three phases ensures the robust production of a microcapsule structure involving a plurality of vesicles homogeneously distributed in the capsule bulk, the number of cores being a freely chosen parameter. Such composite microcapsules find a broad field of technological applications in the pharmaceutical, food or biotechnology industries.

  12. An extended model of vesicle fusion at the plasma membrane to estimate protein lateral diffusion from TIRF microscopy images. (United States)

    Basset, Antoine; Bouthemy, Patrick; Boulanger, Jérôme; Waharte, François; Salamero, Jean; Kervrann, Charles


    Characterizing membrane dynamics is a key issue to understand cell exchanges with the extra-cellular medium. Total internal reflection fluorescence microscopy (TIRFM) is well suited to focus on the late steps of exocytosis at the plasma membrane. However, it is still a challenging task to quantify (lateral) diffusion and estimate local dynamics of proteins. A new model was introduced to represent the behavior of cargo transmembrane proteins during the vesicle fusion to the plasma membrane at the end of the exocytosis process. Two biophysical parameters, the diffusion coefficient and the release rate parameter, are automatically estimated from TIRFM image sequences, to account for both the lateral diffusion of molecules at the membrane and the continuous release of the proteins from the vesicle to the plasma membrane. Quantitative evaluation on 300 realistic computer-generated image sequences demonstrated the efficiency and accuracy of the method. The application of our method on 16 real TIRFM image sequences additionally revealed differences in the dynamic behavior of Transferrin Receptor (TfR) and Langerin proteins. An automated method has been designed to simultaneously estimate the diffusion coefficient and the release rate for each individual vesicle fusion event at the plasma membrane in TIRFM image sequences. It can be exploited for further deciphering cell membrane dynamics.

  13. Measuring brain synaptic vesicle protein 2A with positron emission tomography and [18F]UCB-H


    Bahri, Mohamed Ali; Plenevaux, Alain; Aerts, Joël; Bastin, Christine; Becker, Guillaume; Mercier, Joël; Valade, Anne; Buchanan, Tim; Mestdagh, Nathalie; Ledoux, Didier; Seret, Alain; Luxen, André; Salmon, Eric


    Introduction: Brain distribution of synaptic vesicle protein 2Awas measured with fluorine-18 UCBH ([18F]UCB-H) and positron emission tomography (PET). Methods: Images of synaptic density were acquired in healthy volunteers (two young participants and two seniors). Input function was measured by arterial blood sampling (arterial input function) and derived from PET images using carotid activity (image-derived input function). Logan graphical analysis was used to estimate regional synaptic v...

  14. Post-fusion structural changes and their roles in exocytosis and endocytosis of dense-core vesicles (United States)

    Chiang, Hsueh-Cheng; Shin, Wonchul; Zhao, Wei-Dong; Hamid, Edaeni; Sheng, Jiansong; Baydyuk, Maryna; Wen, Peter J.; Jin, Albert; Momboisse, Fanny; Wu, Ling-Gang


    Vesicle fusion with the plasma membrane generates an Ω-shaped membrane profile. Its pore is thought to dilate until flattening (full-collapse), followed by classical endocytosis to retrieve vesicles. Alternatively, the pore may close (kiss-and-run), but the triggering mechanisms and its endocytic roles remain poorly understood. Here, using confocal and stimulated emission depletion microscopy imaging of dense-core vesicles, we find that fusion-generated Ω-profiles may enlarge or shrink while maintaining vesicular membrane proteins. Closure of fusion-generated Ω-profiles, which produces various sizes of vesicles, is the dominant mechanism mediating rapid and slow endocytosis within ~1-30 s. Strong calcium influx triggers dynamin-mediated closure. Weak calcium influx does not promote closure, but facilitates the merging of Ω-profiles with the plasma membrane via shrinking rather than full-collapse. These results establish a model, termed Ω-exo-endocytosis, in which the fusion-generated Ω-profile may shrink to merge with the plasma membrane, change in size or change in size then close in response to calcium, which is the main mechanism to retrieve dense-core vesicles.

  15. The Conserved VPS-50 Protein Functions in Dense-Core Vesicle Maturation and Acidification and Controls Animal Behavior. (United States)

    Paquin, Nicolas; Murata, Yasunobu; Froehlich, Allan; Omura, Daniel T; Ailion, Michael; Pender, Corinne L; Constantine-Paton, Martha; Horvitz, H Robert


    The modification of behavior in response to experience is crucial for animals to adapt to environmental changes. Although factors such as neuropeptides and hormones are known to function in the switch between alternative behavioral states, the mechanisms by which these factors transduce, store, retrieve, and integrate environmental signals to regulate behavior are poorly understood. The rate of locomotion of the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans depends on both current and past food availability. Specifically, C. elegans slows its locomotion when it encounters food, and animals in a food-deprived state slow even more than animals in a well-fed state. The slowing responses of well-fed and food-deprived animals in the presence of food represent distinct behavioral states, as they are controlled by different sets of genes, neurotransmitters, and neurons. Here we describe an evolutionarily conserved C. elegans protein, VPS-50, that is required for animals to assume the well-fed behavioral state. Both VPS-50 and its murine homolog mVPS50 are expressed in neurons, are associated with synaptic and dense-core vesicles, and control vesicle acidification and hence synaptic function, likely through regulation of the assembly of the V-ATPase complex. We propose that dense-core vesicle acidification controlled by the evolutionarily conserved protein VPS-50/mVPS50 affects behavioral state by modulating neuropeptide levels and presynaptic neuronal function in both C. elegans and mammals. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  16. Loss-of-function of the ciliopathy protein Cc2d2a disorganizes the vesicle fusion machinery at the periciliary membrane and indirectly affects Rab8-trafficking in zebrafish photoreceptors. (United States)

    Ojeda Naharros, Irene; Gesemann, Matthias; Mateos, José M; Barmettler, Gery; Forbes, Austin; Ziegler, Urs; Neuhauss, Stephan C F; Bachmann-Gagescu, Ruxandra


    Ciliopathies are human disorders caused by dysfunction of primary cilia, ubiquitous organelles involved in transduction of environmental signals such as light sensation in photoreceptors. Concentration of signal detection proteins such as opsins in the ciliary membrane is achieved by RabGTPase-regulated polarized vesicle trafficking and by a selective barrier at the ciliary base, the transition zone (TZ). Dysfunction of the TZ protein CC2D2A causes Joubert/Meckel syndromes in humans and loss of ciliary protein localization in animal models, including opsins in retinal photoreceptors. The link between the TZ and upstream vesicle trafficking has been little explored to date. Moreover, the role of the small GTPase Rab8 in opsin-carrier vesicle (OCV) trafficking has been recently questioned in a mouse model. Using correlative light and electron microscopy and live imaging in zebrafish photoreceptors, we provide the first live characterization of Rab8-mediated trafficking in photoreceptors in vivo. Our results support a possibly redundant role for both Rab8a/b paralogs in OCV trafficking, based on co-localization of Rab8 and opsins in vesicular structures, and joint movement of Rab8-tagged particles with opsin. We further investigate the role of the TZ protein Cc2d2a in Rab8-mediated trafficking using cc2d2a zebrafish mutants and identify a requirement for Cc2d2a in the latest step of OCV trafficking, namely vesicle fusion. Progressive accumulation of opsin-containing vesicles in the apical portion of photoreceptors lacking Cc2d2a is caused by disorganization of the vesicle fusion machinery at the periciliary membrane with mislocalization and loss of the t-SNAREs SNAP25 and Syntaxin3 and of the exocyst component Exoc4. We further observe secondary defects on upstream Rab8-trafficking with cytoplasmic accumulation of Rab8. Taken together, our results support participation of Rab8 in OCV trafficking and identify a novel role for the TZ protein Cc2d2a in fusion of incoming

  17. Structure formation in binary mixtures of surfactants: vesicle opening-up to bicelles and octopus-like micelles (United States)

    Noguchi, Hiroshi

    Micelle formation in binary mixtures of surfactants is studied using a coarse-grained molecular simulation. When a vesicle composed of lipid and detergent types of molecules is ruptured, a disk-shaped micelle, the bicelle, is typically formed. It is found that cup-shaped vesicles and bicelles connected with worm-like micelles are also formed depending on the surfactant ratio and critical micelle concentration. The obtained octopus shape of micelles agree with those observed in the cryo-TEM images reported in [S. Jain and F. S. Bates, Macromol. 37, 1511 (2004).]. Two types of connection structures between the worm-like micelles and the bicelles are revealed.

  18. The Bam complex catalyzes efficient insertion of bacterial outer membrane proteins into membrane vesicles of variable lipid composition. (United States)

    Hussain, Sunyia; Bernstein, Harris D


    Most proteins that reside in the bacterial outer membrane (OM) have a distinctive "β-barrel" architecture, but the assembly of these proteins is poorly understood. The spontaneous assembly of OM proteins (OMPs) into pure lipid vesicles has been studied extensively, but often requires non-physiological conditions and time scales and is strongly influenced by properties of the lipid bilayer including surface charge, thickness, and fluidity. Furthermore, the membrane insertion of OMPs in vivo is catalyzed by a heterooligomer called the β-barrel assembly machinery (Bam) complex. To determine the role of lipids in the assembly of OMPs under more physiological conditions, we exploited an assay in which the Bam complex mediates their insertion into membrane vesicles. After reconstituting the Bam complex into vesicles that contain a variety of different synthetic lipids, we found that two model OMPs, EspP and OmpA, folded efficiently regardless of the lipid composition. Most notably, both proteins folded into membranes composed of a gel phase lipid that mimics the rigid bacterial OM. Interestingly, we found that EspP, OmpA and another model protein (OmpG) folded at significantly different rates and that an α-helix embedded inside the EspP β-barrel accelerates folding. Our results show that the Bam complex largely overcomes effects that lipids exert on OMP assembly and suggest that specific interactions between the Bam complex and an OMP influence its rate of folding. Published under license by The American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Inc.

  19. How pure are your vesicles? (United States)

    Webber, Jason; Clayton, Aled


    We propose a straightforward method to estimate the purity of vesicle preparations by comparing the ratio of nano-vesicle counts to protein concentration, using tools such as the increasingly available NanoSight platform and a colorimetric protein assay such as the BCA-assay. Such an approach is simple enough to apply to every vesicle preparation within a given laboratory, assisting researchers as a routine quality control step. Also, the approach may aid in comparing/standardising vesicle purity across diverse studies, and may be of particular importance in evaluating vesicular biomarkers. We herein propose some criteria to aid in the definition of pure vesicles. PMID:24009896

  20. Extracellular vesicles: structure, function, and potential clinical uses in renal diseases

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    F.T. Borges


    Full Text Available Interest in the role of extracellular vesicles in various diseases including cancer has been increasing. Extracellular vesicles include microvesicles, exosomes, apoptotic bodies, and argosomes, and are classified by size, content, synthesis, and function. Currently, the best characterized are exosomes and microvesicles. Exosomes are small vesicles (40-100 nm involved in intercellular communication regardless of the distance between them. They are found in various biological fluids such as plasma, serum, and breast milk, and are formed from multivesicular bodies through the inward budding of the endosome membrane. Microvesicles are 100-1000 nm vesicles released from the cell by the outward budding of the plasma membrane. The therapeutic potential of extracellular vesicles is very broad, with applications including a route of drug delivery and as biomarkers for diagnosis. Extracellular vesicles extracted from stem cells may be used for treatment of many diseases including kidney diseases. This review highlights mechanisms of synthesis and function, and the potential uses of well-characterized extracellular vesicles, mainly exosomes, with a special focus on renal functions and diseases.

  1. Floating Escherichia coli by expressing cyanobacterial gas vesicle genes (United States)

    Wang, Tianhe; Kang, Li; Li, Jiaheng; Wu, Wenjie; Zhang, Peiran; Gong, Minghao; Lai, Weihong; Zhang, Chunyan; Chang, Lei; Peng, Yong; Yang, Zhongzhou; Li, Lian; Bao, Yingying; Xu, Haowen; Zhang, Xiaohua; Sui, Zhenghong; Yang, Guanpin; Wang, Xianghong


    Gas vesicles are hollow, air-filled polyprotein structures that provide the buoyancy to cells. They are found in a variety of prokaryotes. In this study, we isolated a partial gas vesicle protein gene cluster containing gvpA and gvpC20Ψ from Planktothrix rubescens, and inserted it into an expression vector and expressed it in E. coli. The gas vesicle was developed in bacterial cells, which made bacterial cells to float on medium surface. We also amplified gvpA and gvpC20Ψ separately and synthesized an artificial operon by fusing these two genes with the standardized gene expression controlling elements of E. coli. The artificial operon was expressed in E. coli, forming gas vesicles and floating bacteria cells. Our findings verified that the whole set of genes and the overall structure of gas vesicle gene cluster are not necessary for developing gas vesicles in bacteria cells. Two genes, gvpA and gvpC20Ψ, of the gas vesicle gene cluster are sufficient for synthesizing an artificial operon that can develop gas vesicles in bacteria cells. Our findings provided a wide range of applications including easing the harvest of cultured microalgae and bacteria, as well as enriching and remediating aquatic pollutants by constructing gas vesicles in their cells.

  2. Entamoeba histolytica uses ferritin as an iron source and internalises this protein by means of clathrin-coated vesicles. (United States)

    López-Soto, Fernando; González-Robles, Arturo; Salazar-Villatoro, Lizbeth; León-Sicairos, Nidia; Piña-Vázquez, Carolina; Salazar, Eduardo Pérez; de la Garza, Mireya


    Entamoeba histolytica is a parasitic protozoan that produces dysentery and often reaches the liver, leading to abscess formation. Ferritin is an iron-storage protein that is mainly found in liver and spleen in mammals. The liver contains a plentiful source of iron for amoebae multiplying in that organ, making it a prime target for infection since iron is essential for the growth of this parasite. The aim of this study was to determine whether trophozoites are able to take up ferritin and internalise this protein for their growth in axenic culture. Interaction between the amoebae and ferritin was studied by flow cytometry, confocal laser-scanning microscopy and transmission electron microscopy. Amoebae were viable in iron supplied by ferritin. Trophozoites quickly internalised ferritin via clathrin-coated vesicles, a process that was initiated within the first 2 min of incubation. In 30 min, ferritin was found colocalizing with the LAMP-2 protein at vesicles in the cytosol. The uptake of ferritin was time- temperature- and concentration-dependent, specific and saturated at 46 nM of ferritin. Haemoglobin and holo-transferrin did not compete with ferritin for binding to amoebae. Amoebae cleaved ferritin leading to the production of several different sized fragments. Cysteine proteases of 100, 75 and 50 kDa from amoeba extracts were observed in gels copolymerised with ferritin. For a pathogen such as E. histolytica, the capacity to utilise ferritin as an iron source may well explain its high pathogenic potential in the liver.

  3. Synaptic Vesicle Endocytosis (United States)

    Saheki, Yasunori; De Camilli, Pietro


    Neurons can sustain high rates of synaptic transmission without exhausting their supply of synaptic vesicles. This property relies on a highly efficient local endocytic recycling of synaptic vesicle membranes, which can be reused for hundreds, possibly thousands, of exo-endocytic cycles. Morphological, physiological, molecular, and genetic studies over the last four decades have provided insight into the membrane traffic reactions that govern this recycling and its regulation. These studies have shown that synaptic vesicle endocytosis capitalizes on fundamental and general endocytic mechanisms but also involves neuron-specific adaptations of such mechanisms. Thus, investigations of these processes have advanced not only the field of synaptic transmission but also, more generally, the field of endocytosis. This article summarizes current information on synaptic vesicle endocytosis with an emphasis on the underlying molecular mechanisms and with a special focus on clathrin-mediated endocytosis, the predominant pathway of synaptic vesicle protein internalization. PMID:22763746

  4. Analysis of AKT and ERK1/2 protein kinases in extracellular vesicles isolated from blood of patients with cancer

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Johannes C. van der Mijn


    Full Text Available Background: Extracellular vesicles (EVs are small nanometre-sized vesicles that are circulating in blood. They are released by multiple cells, including tumour cells. We hypothesized that circulating EVs contain protein kinases that may be assessed as biomarkers during treatment with tyrosine kinase inhibitors. Methods: EVs released by U87 glioma cells, H3255 and H1650 non-small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC cells were profiled by tandem mass spectrometry. Total AKT/protein kinase B and extracellular signal regulated kinase 1/2 (ERK1/2 levels as well as their relative phosphorylation were measured by western blot in isogenic U87 cells with or without mutant epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFRvIII and their corresponding EVs. To assess biomarker potential, plasma samples from 24 healthy volunteers and 42 patients with cancer were used. Results: In total, 130 different protein kinases were found to be released in EVs including multiple drug targets, such as mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR, AKT, ERK1/2, AXL and EGFR. Overexpression of EGFRvIII in U87 cells results in increased phosphorylation of EGFR, AKT and ERK1/2 in cells and EVs, whereas a decreased phosphorylation was noted upon treatment with the EGFR inhibitor erlotinib. EV samples derived from patients with cancer contained significantly more protein (p=0.0067 compared to healthy donors. Phosphorylation of AKT and ERK1/2 in plasma EVs from both healthy donors and patients with cancer was relatively low compared to levels in cancer cells. Preliminary analysis of total AKT and ERK1/2 levels in plasma EVs from patients with NSCLC before and after sorafenib/metformin treatment (n=12 shows a significant decrease in AKT levels among patients with a favourable treatment response (p<0.005. Conclusion: Phosphorylation of protein kinases in EVs reflects their phosphorylation in tumour cells. Total AKT protein levels may allow monitoring of kinase inhibitor responses in patients with cancer.

  5. Extracellular Vesicles Isolated from the Brains of rTg4510 Mice Seed Tau Protein Aggregation in a Threshold-dependent Manner. (United States)

    Polanco, Juan Carlos; Scicluna, Benjamin James; Hill, Andrew Francis; Götz, Jürgen


    The microtubule-associated protein tau has a critical role in Alzheimer disease and related tauopathies. There is accumulating evidence that tau aggregates spread and replicate in a prion-like manner, with the uptake of pathological tau seeds causing misfolding and aggregation of monomeric tau in recipient cells. Here we focused on small extracellular vesicles enriched for exosomes that were isolated from the brains of tau transgenic rTg4510 and control mice. We found that these extracellular vesicles contained tau, although the levels were significantly higher in transgenic mice that have a pronounced tau pathology. Tau in the vesicles was differentially phosphorylated, although to a lower degree than in the brain cells from which they were derived. Several phospho-epitopes (AT8, AT100, and AT180) thought to be critical for tau pathology were undetected in extracellular vesicles. Despite this, when assayed with FRET tau biosensor cells, extracellular vesicles derived from transgenic mice were capable of seeding tau aggregation in a threshold-dependent manner. We also observed that the dye used to label extracellular vesicle membranes was still present during nucleation and formation of tau inclusions, suggesting either a role for membranes in the seeding or in the process of degradation. Together, we clearly demonstrate that extracellular vesicles can transmit tau pathology. This indicates a role for extracellular vesicles in the transmission and spreading of tau pathology. The characteristics of tau in extracellular vesicles and the seeding threshold we identified may explain why tau pathology develops very slowly in neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer disease. © 2016 by The American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Inc.

  6. Rupturing Giant Plasma Membrane Vesicles to Form Micron-sized Supported Cell Plasma Membranes with Native Transmembrane Proteins. (United States)

    Chiang, Po-Chieh; Tanady, Kevin; Huang, Ling-Ting; Chao, Ling


    Being able to directly obtain micron-sized cell blebs, giant plasma membrane vesicles (GPMVs), with native membrane proteins and deposit them on a planar support to form supported plasma membranes could allow the membrane proteins to be studied by various surface analytical tools in native-like bilayer environments. However, GPMVs do not easily rupture on conventional supports because of their high protein and cholesterol contents. Here, we demonstrate the possibility of using compression generated by the air-water interface to efficiently rupture GPMVs to form micron-sized supported membranes with native plasma membrane proteins. We demonstrated that not only lipid but also a native transmembrane protein in HeLa cells, Aquaporin 3 (AQP3), is mobile in the supported membrane platform. This convenient method for generating micron-sized supported membrane patches with mobile native transmembrane proteins could not only facilitate the study of membrane proteins by surface analytical tools, but could also enable us to use native membrane proteins for bio-sensing applications.

  7. Class C Vps protein complex regulates vacuolar SNARE pairing and is required for vesicle docking/fusion. (United States)

    Sato, T K; Rehling, P; Peterson, M R; Emr, S D


    In yeast, the Class C Vps protein complex (C-Vps complex), composed of Vps11, Vps16, Vps18, and Vps33, functions in Golgi-to-vacuole protein transport. In this study, we characterized and purified this complex and identified its interaction with the syntaxin homolog Vam3. Vam3 pairs with the SNAP-25 homolog Vam7 and VAMP homolog Vti1 to form SNARE complexes during vesicle docking/fusion with the vacuole. The C-Vps complex does not bind to Vam3-Vti1-Vam7 paired SNARE complexes but instead binds to unpaired Vam3. Antibodies to a component of this complex inhibited in vitro vacuole-to-vacuole fusion. Furthermore, temperature-conditional mutations in the Class C VPS genes destabilized Vam3-Vti1-Vam7 pairing. Therefore, we propose that the C-Vps complex associates with unpaired (activated) Vam3 to mediate the assembly of trans-SNARE complexes during both vesicle docking/fusion and vacuole-to-vacuole fusion.

  8. Measuring brain synaptic vesicle protein 2A with positron emission tomography and [18F]UCB-H. (United States)

    Bahri, Mohamed Ali; Plenevaux, Alain; Aerts, Joël; Bastin, Christine; Becker, Guillaume; Mercier, Joël; Valade, Anne; Buchanan, Tim; Mestdagh, Nathalie; Ledoux, Didier; Seret, Alain; Luxen, André; Salmon, Eric


    Brain distribution of synaptic vesicle protein 2A was measured with fluorine-18 UCB-H ([ 18 F]UCB-H) and positron emission tomography (PET). Images of synaptic density were acquired in healthy volunteers (two young participants and two seniors). Input function was measured by arterial blood sampling (arterial input function) and derived from PET images using carotid activity (image-derived input function). Logan graphical analysis was used to estimate regional synaptic vesicle protein 2A distribution volume. [ 18 F]UCB-H uptake was ubiquitous in cortical and subcortical gray matter. Arterial input function and image-derived input function provided regional distribution volume with a high linear relationship. The cerebral distribution of [ 18 F]UCB-H is similar to that recently observed with carbon-11 UCB-J ([ 11 C]UCB-J). An accurate [ 18 F]UCB-H quantification can be performed without invasive arterial blood sampling when no suitable reference region is available, using dynamic PET carotid activity. Brain synaptic density can be studied in vivo in normal and pathological aging.

  9. Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis mutant vesicle-associated membrane protein-associated protein-B transgenic mice develop TAR-DNA-binding protein-43 pathology.

    LENUS (Irish Health Repository)

    Tudor, E L


    Cytoplasmic ubiquitin-positive inclusions containing TAR-DNA-binding protein-43 (TDP-43) within motor neurons are the hallmark pathology of sporadic amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). TDP-43 is a nuclear protein and the mechanisms by which it becomes mislocalized and aggregated in ALS are not properly understood. A mutation in the vesicle-associated membrane protein-associated protein-B (VAPB) involving a proline to serine substitution at position 56 (VAPBP56S) is the cause of familial ALS type-8. To gain insight into the molecular mechanisms by which VAPBP56S induces disease, we created transgenic mice that express either wild-type VAPB (VAPBwt) or VAPBP56S in the nervous system. Analyses of both sets of mice revealed no overt motor phenotype nor alterations in survival. However, VAPBP56S but not VAPBwt transgenic mice develop cytoplasmic TDP-43 accumulations within spinal cord motor neurons that were first detected at 18 months of age. Our results suggest a link between abnormal VAPBP56S function and TDP-43 mislocalization.

  10. Vesicle-associated Membrane Protein-2 (VAMP2) Mediates cAMP-stimulated Renin Release in Mouse Juxtaglomerular Cells* (United States)

    Mendez, Mariela; Gross, Kenneth W.; Glenn, Sean T.; Garvin, Jeffrey L.; Carretero, Oscar A.


    Renin is essential for blood pressure control. Renin is stored in granules in juxtaglomerular (JG) cells, located in the pole of the renal afferent arterioles. The second messenger cAMP stimulates renin release. However, it is unclear whether fusion and exocytosis of renin-containing granules is involved. In addition, the role of the fusion proteins, SNAREs (soluble N-ethylmaleimide-sensitive factor attachment proteins), in renin release from JG cells has not been studied. The vesicle SNARE proteins VAMP2 (vesicle associated membrane protein 2) and VAMP3 mediate cAMP-stimulated exocytosis in other endocrine cells. Thus, we hypothesized that VAMP2 and/or -3 mediate cAMP-stimulated renin release from JG cells. By fluorescence-activated cell sorting, we isolated JG cells expressing green fluorescent protein and compared the relative abundance of VAMP2/3 in JG cells versus total mouse kidney mRNA by quantitative PCR. We found that VAMP2 and VAMP3 mRNA are expressed and enriched in JG cells. Confocal imaging of primary cultures of JG cells showed that VAMP2 (but not VAMP3) co-localized with renin-containing granules. Cleavage of VAMP2 and VAMP3 with tetanus toxin blocked cAMP-stimulated renin release from JG cells by ∼50% and impaired cAMP-stimulated exocytosis by ∼50%, as monitored with FM1–43. Then we specifically knocked down VAMP2 or VAMP3 by adenoviral-mediated delivery of short hairpin silencing RNA. We found that silencing VAMP2 blocked cAMP-induced renin release by ∼50%. In contrast, silencing VAMP3 had no effect on basal or cAMP-stimulated renin release. We conclude that VAMP2 and VAMP3 are expressed in JG cells, but only VAMP2 is targeted to renin-containing granules and mediates the stimulatory effect of cAMP on renin exocytosis. PMID:21708949

  11. Capsids, Matrices and Vesicles : Structural Insights into the Assembly of Paramyxoviruses


    Liljeroos, Lassi


    Paramyxoviridae constitute a family of pleomorphic, enveloped viruses including several human pathogens. Understanding of the structure and assembly of paramyxoviruses has been hindered by the lack of whole-virion three-dimensional structures. In this work, measles and human respiratory syncytial viruses were studied with three-dimensional electron microscopy and biochemical analysis of recombinant proteins. The analysis revealed significant differences in the structure and assembly of the tw...

  12. Enantioselectivity of vesicle-forming chiral surfactants in capillary electrophoresis. Role of the surfactant headgroup structure. (United States)

    Mohanty, Ashok; Dey, Joykrishna


    Two vesicle-forming single-tailed amino acid derivatized surfactants sodium N-[4-n-dodecyloxybenzoyl]-L-leucinate (SDLL) and sodium N-[4-n-dodecyloxybenzoyl]-L-isoleucinate (SDLIL) have been synthesized and used as pseudo-stationary phase in micellar electrokinetic chromatography to evaluate the role of steric factor of amino acid headgroup and hydrophobic/hydrophilic interactions for enantiomeric separations. The aggregation behavior of the surfactants has been studied in aqueous buffered solution using surface tension and fluorescence probe techniques. Results of these studies have suggested formation of vesicles in aqueous solutions. Microenvironment of the vesicle, which determines the depth of penetration of the analytes into vesicle was determined by fluorescence probe technique using pyrene, N-phenyl-1-naphthylamine (NPN), and 1,6-diphenyl-1,3,5-hexatriene (DPH) as probe molecules. Atropisomeric compounds (+/-)-1,1'-bi-2-naphthol (BOH), (+/-)-1,1'-binaphthyl-2,2'-diamine (BDA), (+/-)-1,1'-binaphthyl-2,2'-diylhydrogen phosphate (BNP) and Tröger's base (TB) and chiral compound benzoin (BZN) has been enantioseparated. The separations were optimized with respect to surfactant concentration, pH, and borate buffer concentration. SDLL was found to provide better resolution for BOH, BNP, and BZN. On the other hand, SDLIL offers better resolution for BDA. The chromatographic results have been discussed in the light of the aggregation behavior of the surfactants and the interaction of the solutes with the vesicles.

  13. A preliminary proteomic characterisation of extracellular vesicles released by the ovine parasitic nematode, Teladorsagia circumcincta. (United States)

    Tzelos, Thomas; Matthews, Jacqueline B; Buck, Amy H; Simbari, Fabio; Frew, David; Inglis, Neil F; McLean, Kevin; Nisbet, Alasdair J; Whitelaw, C Bruce A; Knox, David P; McNeilly, Tom N


    Teladorsagia circumcincta is a major cause of ovine parasitic gastroenteritis in temperate climatic regions. The development of high levels of anthelmintic resistance in this nematode species challenges its future control. Recent research indicates that many parasite species release extracellular vesicles into their environment, many of which have been classified as endocytic in origin, termed exosomes. These vesicles are considered to play important roles in the intercellular communication between parasites and their hosts, and thus represent potentially useful targets for novel control strategies. Here, we demonstrate that exosome-like extracellular vesicles can be isolated from excretory-secretory (ES) products released by T. circumcincta fourth stage larvae (Tci-L4ES). Furthermore, we perform a comparative proteomic analysis of vesicle-enriched and vesicle-free Tci-L4ES. Approximately 73% of the proteins identified in the vesicle-enriched fraction were unique to this fraction, whilst the remaining 27% were present in both vesicle-enriched and vesicle-free fraction. These unique proteins included structural proteins, nuclear proteins, metabolic proteins, proteolytic enzymes and activation-associated secreted proteins. Finally, we demonstrate that molecules present within the vesicles-enriched material are targets of the IgA and IgG response in T. circumcincta infected sheep, and could potentially represent useful targets for future vaccine intervention studies. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  14. WDR8 is a centriolar satellite and centriole-associated protein that promotes ciliary vesicle docking during ciliogenesis. (United States)

    Kurtulmus, Bahtiyar; Wang, Wenbo; Ruppert, Thomas; Neuner, Annett; Cerikan, Berati; Viol, Linda; Dueñas-Sánchez, Rafael; Gruss, Oliver J; Pereira, Gislene


    Ciliogenesis initiates at the mother centriole through a series of events that include membrane docking, displacement of cilia-inhibitory proteins and axoneme elongation. Centriolar proteins, in particular at distal and subdistal appendages, carry out these functions. Recently, cytoplasmic complexes named centriolar satellites have also been shown to promote ciliogenesis. Little is known about the functional and molecular relationship between appendage proteins, satellites and cilia biogenesis. Here, we identified the WD-repeat protein 8 (WDR8, also known as WRAP73) as a satellite and centriolar component. We show that WDR8 interacts with the satellite proteins SSX2IP and PCM1 as well as the centriolar proximal end component Cep135. Cep135 is required for the recruitment of WDR8 to centrioles. Depletion experiments revealed that WDR8 and Cep135 have strongly overlapping functions in ciliogenesis. Both are indispensable for ciliary vesicle docking to the mother centriole and for unlocking the distal end of the mother centriole from the ciliary inhibitory complex CP110-Cep97. Our data thus point to an important function of centriolar proximal end proteins in ciliary membrane biogenesis, and establish WDR8 and Cep135 as two factors that are essential for the initial steps of ciliation. © 2016. Published by The Company of Biologists Ltd.

  15. Candida albicans Modifies the Protein Composition and Size Distribution of THP-1 Macrophage-Derived Extracellular Vesicles. (United States)

    Reales-Calderón, Jose Antonio; Vaz, Catarina; Monteoliva, Lucía; Molero, Gloria; Gil, Concha


    The effectiveness of macrophages in the response to systemic candidiasis is crucial to an effective clearance of the pathogen. The secretion of proteins, mRNAs, noncoding RNAs and lipids through extracellular vesicles (EVs) is one of the mechanisms of communication between immune cells. EVs change their cargo to mediate different responses, and may play a role in the response against infections. Thus we have undertaken the first quantitative proteomic analysis on the protein composition of THP-1 macrophage-derived EVs during the interaction with Candida albicans. This study revealed changes in EVs sizes and in protein composition, and allowed the identification and quantification of 717 proteins. Of them, 133 proteins changed their abundance due to the interaction. The differentially abundant proteins were involved in functions relating to immune response, signaling, or cytoskeletal reorganization. THP-1-derived EVs, both from control and from Candida-infected macrophages, had similar effector functions on other THP-1-differenciated macrophages, activating ERK and p38 kinases, and increasing both the secretion of proinflammatory cytokines and the candidacidal activity; while in THP-1 nondifferenciated monocytes, only EVs from infected macrophages increased significantly the TNF-α secretion. Our findings provide new information on the role of macrophage-derived EVs in response to C. albicans infection and in macrophages communication.

  16. Spontaneous crowding of ribosomes and proteins inside vesicles: a possible mechanism for the origin of cell metabolism. (United States)

    Pereira de Souza, Tereza; Steiniger, Frank; Stano, Pasquale; Fahr, Alfred; Luisi, Pier Luigi


    One of the open questions in the origin of life is the spontaneous formation of primitive cell-like compartments from free molecules in solution and membranes. "Metabolism-first" and "replicator-first" theories claim that early catalytic cycles first evolved in solution, and became encapsulated inside lipid vesicles later on. "Compartment-first" theories suggest that metabolism progressively occurred inside compartments. Both views have some weaknesses: the low probability of co-entrapment of several compounds inside the same compartment, and the need to control nutrient uptake and waste release, respectively. By using lipid vesicles as early-cell models, we show that ribosomes, proteins and lipids spontaneously self-organise into cell-like compartments to achieve high internal concentrations, even when starting from dilute solutions. These findings suggest that the assembly of cell-like compartments, despite its low probability of occurrence, is indeed a physically realistic process. The spontaneous achievement of high local concentration might provide a rational account for the origin of primitive cellular metabolism. Copyright © 2011 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  17. Structural Genomics of Protein Phosphatases

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


    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.

  18. Placental Extracellular Vesicles and Feto-Maternal Communication (United States)

    Tong, M.; Chamley, L.W.


    The human placenta is an anatomically unique structure that extrudes a variety of extracellular vesicles into the maternal blood (including syncytial nuclear aggregates, microvesicles, and nanovesicles). Large quantities of extracellular vesicles are produced by the placenta in both healthy and diseased pregnancies. Since their first description more than 120 years ago, placental extracellular vesicles are only now being recognized as important carriers for proteins, lipids, and nucleic acids, which may play a crucial role in feto-maternal communication. Here, we summarize the current literature on the cargos of placental extracellular vesicles and the known effects of such vesicles on maternal cells/systems, especially those of the maternal immune and vascular systems. PMID:25635060

  19. The Vesicle Priming Factor CAPS Functions as a Homodimer via C2 Domain Interactions to Promote Regulated Vesicle Exocytosis. (United States)

    Petrie, Matt; Esquibel, Joseph; Kabachinski, Greg; Maciuba, Stephanie; Takahashi, Hirohide; Edwardson, J Michael; Martin, Thomas F J


    Neurotransmitters and peptide hormones are secreted by regulated vesicle exocytosis. CAPS (also known as CADPS) is a 145-kDa cytosolic and peripheral membrane protein required for vesicle docking and priming steps that precede Ca 2+ -triggered vesicle exocytosis. CAPS binds phosphatidylinositol 4,5-bisphosphate (PI(4,5)P 2 ) and SNARE proteins and is proposed to promote SNARE protein complex assembly for vesicle docking and priming. We characterized purified soluble CAPS as mainly monomer in equilibrium with small amounts of dimer. However, the active form of CAPS bound to PC12 cell membranes or to liposomes containing PI(4,5)P 2 and Q-SNARE proteins was mainly dimer. CAPS dimer formation required its C2 domain based on mutation or deletion studies. Moreover, C2 domain mutations or deletions resulted in a loss of CAPS function in regulated vesicle exocytosis, indicating that dimerization is essential for CAPS function. Comparison of the CAPS C2 domain to a structurally defined Munc13-1 C2A domain dimer revealed conserved residues involved in CAPS dimerization. We conclude that CAPS functions as a C2 domain-mediated dimer in regulated vesicle exocytosis. The unique tandem C2-PH domain of CAPS may serve as a PI(4,5)P 2 -triggered switch for dimerization. CAPS dimerization may be coupled to oligomeric SNARE complex assembly for vesicle docking and priming. © 2016 by The American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Inc.

  20. Increased liver-specific proteins in circulating extracellular vesicles as potential biomarkers for drug- and alcohol-induced liver injury.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Young-Eun Cho

    Full Text Available Drug- and alcohol-induced liver injury are a leading cause of liver failure and transplantation. Emerging evidence suggests that extracellular vesicles (EVs are a source of biomarkers because they contain unique proteins reflecting the identity and tissue-specific origin of the EV proteins. This study aimed to determine whether potentially hepatotoxic agents, such as acetaminophen (APAP and binge alcohol, can increase the amounts of circulating EVs and evaluate liver-specific EV proteins as potential biomarkers for liver injury. The circulating EVs, isolated from plasma of APAP-exposed, ethanol-fed mice, or alcoholic hepatitis patients versus normal control counterparts, were characterized by proteomics and biochemical methods. Liver specific EV proteins were analyzed by immunoblots and ELISA. The amounts of total and liver-specific proteins in circulating EVs from APAP-treated mice significantly increased in a dose- and time-dependent manner. Proteomic analysis of EVs from APAP-exposed mice revealed that the amounts of liver-specific and/or hepatotoxic proteins were increased compared to those of controls. Additionally, the increased protein amounts in EVs following APAP exposure returned to basal levels when mice were treated with N-acetylcysteine or glutathione. Similar results of increased amounts and liver-specific proteins in circulating EVs were also observed in mice exposed to hepatotoxic doses of thioacetamide or d-galactosamine but not by non-hepatotoxic penicillin or myotoxic bupivacaine. Additionally, binge ethanol exposure significantly elevated liver-specific proteins in circulating EVs from mice and alcoholics with alcoholic hepatitis, compared to control counterparts. These results indicate that circulating EVs in drug- and alcohol-mediated hepatic injury contain liver-specific proteins that could serve as specific biomarkers for hepatotoxicity.

  1. ELKS1 localizes the synaptic vesicle priming protein bMunc13-2 to a specific subset of active zones. (United States)

    Kawabe, Hiroshi; Mitkovski, Miso; Kaeser, Pascal S; Hirrlinger, Johannes; Opazo, Felipe; Nestvogel, Dennis; Kalla, Stefan; Fejtova, Anna; Verrier, Sophie E; Bungers, Simon R; Cooper, Benjamin H; Varoqueaux, Frederique; Wang, Yun; Nehring, Ralf B; Gundelfinger, Eckart D; Rosenmund, Christian; Rizzoli, Silvio O; Südhof, Thomas C; Rhee, Jeong-Seop; Brose, Nils


    Presynaptic active zones (AZs) are unique subcellular structures at neuronal synapses, which contain a network of specific proteins that control synaptic vesicle (SV) tethering, priming, and fusion. Munc13s are core AZ proteins with an essential function in SV priming. In hippocampal neurons, two different Munc13s-Munc13-1 and bMunc13-2-mediate opposite forms of presynaptic short-term plasticity and thus differentially affect neuronal network characteristics. We found that most presynapses of cortical and hippocampal neurons contain only Munc13-1, whereas ∼10% contain both Munc13-1 and bMunc13-2. Whereas the presynaptic recruitment and activation of Munc13-1 depends on Rab3-interacting proteins (RIMs), we demonstrate here that bMunc13-2 is recruited to synapses by the AZ protein ELKS1, but not ELKS2, and that this recruitment determines basal SV priming and short-term plasticity. Thus, synapse-specific interactions of different Munc13 isoforms with ELKS1 or RIMs are key determinants of the molecular and functional heterogeneity of presynaptic AZs. © 2017 Kawabe et al.

  2. The Antitoxin Protein of a Toxin-Antitoxin System fromXylella fastidiosaIs Secreted via Outer Membrane Vesicles. (United States)

    Santiago, André da Silva; Mendes, Juliano S; Dos Santos, Clelton A; de Toledo, Marcelo A S; Beloti, Lilian L; Crucello, Aline; Horta, Maria A C; Favaro, Marianna T de Pinho; Munar, Duber M M; de Souza, Alessandra A; Cotta, Mônica A; de Souza, Anete P


    The Xylella fastidiosa subsp pauca strain 9a5c is a Gram-negative, xylem-limited bacterium that is able to form a biofilm and affects citrus crops in Brazil. Some genes are considered to be involved in biofilm formation, but the specific mechanisms involved in this process remain unknown. This limited understanding of how some bacteria form biofilms is a major barrier to our comprehension of the progression of diseases caused by biofilm-producing bacteria. Several investigations have shown that the toxin-antitoxin (TA) operon is related to biofilm formation. This operon is composed of a toxin with RNAse activity and its cognate antitoxin. Previous reports have indicated that the antitoxin is able to inhibit toxin activity and modulate the expression of the operon as well as other target genes involved in oxidative stress and mobility. In this study, we characterize a toxin-antitoxin system consisting of XfMqsR and XfYgiT, respectively, from X. fastidiosa subsp. pauca strain 9a5c. These proteins display a high similarity to their homologs in X. fastidiosa strain Temecula and a predicted tridimensional structure that is similar to MqsR-YgiT from Escherichia coli . The characterization was performed using in vitro assays such as analytical ultracentrifugation (AUC), size exclusion chromatography, isothermal titration calorimetry, and Western blotting. Using a fluorometric assay to detect RNAses, we demonstrated that XfMqsR is thermostable and can degrade RNA. XfMqsR is inhibited by XfYgiT, which interacts with its own promoter. XfYgiT is known to be localized in the intracellular compartment; however, we provide strong evidence that X. fastidiosa secretes wild-type XfYgiT into the extracellular environment via outer membrane vesicles, as confirmed by Western blotting and specific immunofluorescence labeling visualized by fluorescence microscopy. Taken together, our results characterize the TA system from X. fastidiosa strain 9a5c, and we also discuss the possible

  3. The antitoxin protein of a toxin-antitoxin system from Xylella fastidiosa is secreted via outer membrane vesicles.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    André Santiago


    Full Text Available The Xylella fastidiosa subsp pauca strain 9a5c is a Gram-negative, xylem-limited bacterium that is able to form a biofilm and affects citrus crops in Brazil. Some genes are considered to be involved in biofilm formation, but the specific mechanisms involved in this process remain unknown. This limited understanding of how some bacteria form biofilms is a major barrier to our comprehension of the progression of diseases caused by biofilm-producing bacteria. Several investigations have shown that the toxin-antitoxin (TA operon is related to biofilm formation. This operon is composed of a toxin with RNAse activity and its cognate antitoxin. Previous reports have indicated that the antitoxin is able to inhibit toxin activity and modulate the expression of the operon as well as other target genes involved in oxidative stress and mobility. In this study, we characterize a toxin-antitoxin system consisting of XfMqsR and XfYgiT, respectively, from X. fastidiosa subsp pauca strain 9a5c. These proteins display a high similarity to their homologues in X. fastidiosa strain Temecula and a predicted tridimensional structure that is similar to MqsR-YgiT from Escherichia coli. The characterization was performed using in vitro assays such as analytical ultracentrifugation (AUC, size exclusion chromatography, isothermal titration calorimetry and western blotting. Using a fluorometric assay to detect RNAses, we demonstrated that XfMqsR is thermostable and can degrade RNA. XfMqsR is inhibited by XfYgiT, which interacts with its own promoter. XfYgiT is known to be localized in the intracellular compartment; however, we provide strong evidence that X. fastidiosa secretes wild-type XfYgiT into the extracellular environment via outer membrane vesicles, as confirmed by western blotting and specific immunofluorescence labeling visualized by fluorescence microscopy. Taken together, our results characterize the TA system from X. fastidiosa strain 9a5c, and we also discuss

  4. Label-free quantitative mass spectrometry for analysis of protein antigens in a meningococcal group B outer membrane vesicle vaccine. (United States)

    Dick, Lawrence W; Mehl, John T; Loughney, John W; Mach, Anna; Rustandi, Richard R; Ha, Sha; Zhang, Lan; Przysiecki, Craig T; Dieter, Lance; Hoang, Van M


    The development of a multivalent outer membrane vesicle (OMV) vaccine where each strain contributes multiple key protein antigens presents numerous analytical challenges. One major difficulty is the ability to accurately and specifically quantitate each antigen, especially during early development and process optimization when immunoreagents are limited or unavailable. To overcome this problem, quantitative mass spectrometry methods can be used. In place of traditional mass assays such as enzyme-linked immunosorbent assays (ELISAs), quantitative LC-MS/MS using multiple reaction monitoring (MRM) can be used during early-phase process development to measure key protein components in complex vaccines in the absence of specific immunoreagents. Multiplexed, label-free quantitative mass spectrometry methods using protein extraction by either detergent or 2-phase solvent were developed to quantitate levels of several meningococcal serogroup B protein antigens in an OMV vaccine candidate. Precision was demonstrated to be less than 15% RSD for the 2-phase extraction and less than 10% RSD for the detergent extraction method. Accuracy was 70 to 130% for the method using a 2-phase extraction and 90-110% for detergent extraction. The viability of MS-based protein quantification as a vaccine characterization method was demonstrated and advantages over traditional quantitative methods were evaluated. Implementation of these MS-based quantification methods can help to decrease the development time for complex vaccines and can provide orthogonal confirmation of results from existing antigen quantification techniques.

  5. Structural genomics of human proteins. (United States)

    Osman, Khan Tanjid; Edwards, Aled


    Structural genomics efforts focused on the human proteome have had three aims: to understand the structural and functional variations within protein families; to understand the structural basis of disease and genetic variation; and to determine the structures of human integral membrane proteins. The overarching theme is to advance the understanding of human health and to provide a structural platform to aid in the development of therapeutics. A decade or more of work in this field has identified optimal experimental strategies that can be used to expedite expression and crystallization of human proteins-and we provide some guidance to this end.

  6. Magic Numbers in Protein Structures

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lindgård, Per-Anker; Bohr, Henrik


    A homology measure for protein fold classes has been constructed by locally projecting consecutive secondary structures onto a lattice. Taking into account hydrophobic forces we have found a mechanism for formation of domains containing magic numbers of secondary structures and multipla...... of these domains. We have performed a statistical analysis of available protein structures and found agreement with the predicted preferred abundances. Furthermore, a connection between sequence information and fold classes is established in terms of hinge forces between the structural elements....

  7. A method for analysis of lipid vesicle domain structure from confocal image data

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Husen, Peter Rasmussen; Fidorra, Matthias; Hartel, Steffen


    confocal imaging stacks. The technique involves projection of volumetric image data onto a triangulated surface mesh representation of the membrane, correction of photoselection effects and global motion of the vesicle during image acquisition and segmentation of the surface into domains using histograms....... The analysis allows for investigation of the morphology and size distribution of domains on the surface....

  8. Statistical thermodynamics of association colloids : the equilibrium structure of micelles, vesicles, and bilayer membranes

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Leermakers, F.A.M.


    The aim of the present study was to unravel the general equilibrium physical properties of lipid bilayer membranes. We consider four major questions:
    1. What determines the morphology of the association colloids (micelles, membranes, vesicles) in general?
    2. Do the

  9. Update on protein structure prediction

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hubbard, T; Tramontano, A; Barton, G


    Computational tools for protein structure prediction are of great interest to molecular, structural and theoretical biologists due to a rapidly increasing number of protein sequences with no known structure. In October 1995, a workshop was held at IRBM to predict as much as possible about a number...... of proteins of biological interest using ab initio pre!diction of fold recognition methods. 112 protein sequences were collected via an open invitation for target submissions. 17 were selected for prediction during the workshop and for 11 of these a prediction of some reliability could be made. We believe...

  10. Diffusion of lipids and GPI-anchored proteins in actin-free plasma membrane vesicles measured by STED-FCS

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Schneider, Falk; Waithe, Dominic; Clausen, Mathias P


    Diffusion and interaction dynamics of molecules at the plasma membrane play an important role in cellular signalling, and they are suggested to be strongly associated with the actin cytoskeleton. Here, we utilise super-resolution STED microscopy combined with fluorescence correlation spectroscopy...... (STED-FCS) to access and compare the diffusion characteristics of fluorescent lipid analogues and GPI-anchored proteins (GPI-APs) in the live cell plasma membrane and in actin cytoskeleton-free cell-derived giant plasma membrane vesicles (GPMVs). Hindered diffusion of phospholipids and sphingolipids...... forming immobile clusters, both of which disappear in GPMVs. Our data underline the crucial role of the actin cortex in maintaining hindered diffusion modes of many but not all of the membrane molecules, and highlight a powerful experimental approach to decipher specific influences on molecular plasma...

  11. Detecting internally symmetric protein structures

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Basner Jodi


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Many functional proteins have a symmetric structure. Most of these are multimeric complexes, which are made of non-symmetric monomers arranged in a symmetric manner. However, there are also a large number of proteins that have a symmetric structure in the monomeric state. These internally symmetric proteins are interesting objects from the point of view of their folding, function, and evolution. Most algorithms that detect the internally symmetric proteins depend on finding repeating units of similar structure and do not use the symmetry information. Results We describe a new method, called SymD, for detecting symmetric protein structures. The SymD procedure works by comparing the structure to its own copy after the copy is circularly permuted by all possible number of residues. The procedure is relatively insensitive to symmetry-breaking insertions and deletions and amplifies positive signals from symmetry. It finds 70% to 80% of the TIM barrel fold domains in the ASTRAL 40 domain database and 100% of the beta-propellers as symmetric. More globally, 10% to 15% of the proteins in the ASTRAL 40 domain database may be considered symmetric according to this procedure depending on the precise cutoff value used to measure the degree of perfection of the symmetry. Symmetrical proteins occur in all structural classes and can have a closed, circular structure, a cylindrical barrel-like structure, or an open, helical structure. Conclusions SymD is a sensitive procedure for detecting internally symmetric protein structures. Using this procedure, we estimate that 10% to 15% of the known protein domains may be considered symmetric. We also report an initial, overall view of the types of symmetries and symmetric folds that occur in the protein domain structure universe.

  12. The Structure of the Mouse Serotonin 5-HT3 Receptor in Lipid Vesicles. (United States)

    Kudryashev, Mikhail; Castaño-Díez, Daniel; Deluz, Cédric; Hassaine, Gherici; Grasso, Luigino; Graf-Meyer, Alexandra; Vogel, Horst; Stahlberg, Henning


    The function of membrane proteins is best understood if their structure in the lipid membrane is known. Here, we determined the structure of the mouse serotonin 5-HT3 receptor inserted in lipid bilayers to a resolution of 12 Å without stabilizing antibodies by cryo electron tomography and subtomogram averaging. The reconstruction reveals protein secondary structure elements in the transmembrane region, the extracellular pore, and the transmembrane channel pathway, showing an overall similarity to the available X-ray model of the truncated 5-HT3 receptor determined in the presence of a stabilizing nanobody. Structural analysis of the 5-HT3 receptor embedded in a lipid bilayer allowed the position of the membrane to be determined. Interactions between the densely packed receptors in lipids were visualized, revealing that the interactions were maintained by the short horizontal helices. In combination with methodological improvements, our approach enables the structural analysis of membrane proteins in response to voltage and ligand gating. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  13. Arabinogalactan Proteins Are Involved in Salt-Adaptation and Vesicle Trafficking in Tobacco by-2 Cell Cultures

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Enrique Olmos


    Full Text Available Arabinogalactan proteins (AGPs are a highly diverse family of glycoproteins that are commonly found in most plant species. However, little is known about the physiological and molecular mechanisms of their function. AGPs are involved in different biological processes such as cell differentiation, cell expansion, tissue development and somatic embryogenesis. AGPs are also involved in abiotic stress response such as salinity modulating cell wall expansion. In this study, we describe how salt-adaptation in tobacco BY-2 cell cultures induces important changes in arabinogalactan proteins distribution and contents. Using the immuno-dot blot technique with different anti-AGP antibodies (JIM13, JIM15, and others, we observed that AGPs were highly accumulated in the culture medium of salt-adapted tobacco cells, probably due to the action of phospholipases. We located these AGP epitopes using immunogold labeling in the cytoplasm associated to the endoplasmic reticulum, the golgi apparatus, and vesicles, plasma membrane and tonoplast. Our results show that salt-adaptation induced a significant reduction of the cytoplasm, plasma membrane and tonoplast content of these epitopes. Yariv reagent was added to the control and salt-adapted tobacco cell cultures, leading to cell death induction in control cells but not in salt-adapted cells. Ultrastructural and immunogold labeling revealed that cell death induced by Yariv reagent in control cells was due to the interaction of Yariv reagent with the AGPs linked to the plasma membranes. Finally, we propose a new function of AGPs as a possible sodium carrier through the mechanism of vesicle trafficking from the apoplast to the vacuoles in salt-adapted tobacco BY-2 cells. This mechanism may contribute to sodium homeostasis during salt-adaptation to high saline concentrations.

  14. Extensive surface protein profiles of extracellular vesicles from cancer cells may provide diagnostic signatures from blood samples

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Larissa Belov


    Full Text Available Extracellular vesicles (EV are membranous particles (30–1,000 nm in diameter secreted by cells. Important biological functions have been attributed to 2 subsets of EV, the exosomes (bud from endosomal membranes and the microvesicles (MV; bud from plasma membranes. Since both types of particles contain surface proteins derived from their cell of origin, their detection in blood may enable diagnosis and prognosis of disease. We have used an antibody microarray (DotScan to compare the surface protein profiles of live cancer cells with those of their EV, based on their binding patterns to immobilized antibodies. Initially, EV derived from the cancer cell lines, LIM1215 (colorectal cancer and MEC1 (B-cell chronic lymphocytic leukaemia; CLL, were used for assay optimization. Biotinylated antibodies specific for EpCAM (CD326 and CD19, respectively, were used to detect captured particles by enhanced chemiluminescence. Subsequently, this approach was used to profile CD19+ EV from the plasma of CLL patients. These EV expressed a subset (~40% of the proteins detected on CLL cells from the same patients: moderate or high levels of CD5, CD19, CD31, CD44, CD55, CD62L, CD82, HLA-A,B,C, HLA-DR; low levels of CD21, CD49c, CD63. None of these proteins was detected on EV from the plasma of age- and gender-matched healthy individuals.

  15. Compact Structure Patterns in Proteins. (United States)

    Chitturi, Bhadrachalam; Shi, Shuoyong; Kinch, Lisa N; Grishin, Nick V


    Globular proteins typically fold into tightly packed arrays of regular secondary structures. We developed a model to approximate the compact parallel and antiparallel arrangement of α-helices and β-strands, enumerated all possible topologies formed by up to five secondary structural elements (SSEs), searched for their occurrence in spatial structures of proteins, and documented their frequencies of occurrence in the PDB. The enumeration model grows larger super-secondary structure patterns (SSPs) by combining pairs of smaller patterns, a process that approximates a potential path of protein fold evolution. The most prevalent SSPs are typically present in superfolds such as the Rossmann-like fold, the ferredoxin-like fold, and the Greek key motif, whereas the less frequent SSPs often possess uncommon structure features such as split β-sheets, left-handed connections, and crossing loops. This complete SSP enumeration model, for the first time, allows us to investigate which theoretically possible SSPs are not observed in available protein structures. All SSPs with up to four SSEs occurred in proteins. However, among the SSPs with five SSEs, approximately 20% (218) are absent from existing folds. Of these unobserved SSPs, 80% contain two or more uncommon structure features. To facilitate future efforts in protein structure classification, engineering, and design, we provide the resulting patterns and their frequency of occurrence in proteins at: Copyright © 2016. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  16. An erythrocyte vesicle protein exported by the malaria parasite promotes tubovesicular lipid import from the host cell surface.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pamela A Tamez


    Full Text Available Plasmodium falciparum is the protozoan parasite that causes the most virulent of human malarias. The blood stage parasites export several hundred proteins into their host erythrocyte that underlie modifications linked to major pathologies of the disease and parasite survival in the blood. Unfortunately, most are 'hypothetical' proteins of unknown function, and those that are essential for parasitization of the erythrocyte cannot be 'knocked out'. Here, we combined bioinformatics and genome-wide expression analyses with a new series of transgenic and cellular assays to show for the first time in malaria parasites that microarray read out from a chemical perturbation can have predictive value. We thereby identified and characterized an exported P. falciparum protein resident in a new vesicular compartment induced by the parasite in the erythrocyte. This protein, named Erythrocyte Vesicle Protein 1 (EVP1, shows novel dynamics of distribution in the parasite and intraerythrocytic membranes. Evidence is presented that its expression results in a change in TVN-mediated lipid import at the host membrane and that it is required for intracellular parasite growth, but not invasion. This exported protein appears to be needed for the maintenance of an essential tubovesicular nutrient import pathway induced by the pathogen in the host cell. Our approach may be generalized to the analysis of hundreds of 'hypothetical' P. falciparum proteins to understand their role in parasite entry and/or growth in erythrocytes as well as phenotypic contributions to either antigen export or tubovesicular import. By functionally validating these unknowns, one may identify new targets in host-microbial interactions for prophylaxis against this major human pathogen.

  17. Mutations in the capsid protein of Brome mosaic virus affecting encapsidation eliminate vesicle induction in planta: implications for virus cell-to-cell spread. (United States)

    Bamunusinghe, Devinka; Chaturvedi, Sonali; Seo, Jang-Kyun; Rao, A L N


    Positive-strand RNA viruses are known to rearrange the endomembrane network to make it more conducive for replication, maturation, or egress. Our previous transmission electron microscopic (TEM) analysis showed that ectopic expression of wild-type (wt) capsid protein (CP) of Brome mosaic virus (BMV) has an intrinsic property of modifying the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) to induce vesicles similar to those present in wt BMV infection. In this study, we evaluated the functional significance of CP-mediated vesicle induction to the BMV infection cycle in planta. Consequently, the cytopathologic changes induced by wt CP or its mutants defective in virion assembly due to mutations engineered in either N- or C-proximal domains were comparatively analyzed by TEM in two susceptible (Nicotiana benthamiana and Chenopodium quinoa) and one nonhost (N. clevelandii) plant species. The results showed that in susceptible hosts, CP-mediated ER-derived vesicle induction is contingent on the expression of encapsidation-competent CP. In contrast, unlike in N. benthamiana and C. quinoa, transient expression of wt CP in nonhost N. clevelandii plants eliminated vesicle induction. Additionally, comparative source-to-sink analysis of virus spread in leaves of N. benthamiana and N. clevelandii coexpressing wt BMV and Cucumber mosaic virus (CMV) showed that despite trans-encapsidation, CMV failed to complement the defective cell-to-cell movement of BMV. The significance and relation of CP-mediated vesicle induction to virus cell-to-cell movement are discussed.

  18. Characterization ofTrichuris murissecreted proteins and extracellular vesicles provides new insights into host-parasite communication. (United States)

    Eichenberger, Ramon M; Talukder, Md Hasanuzzaman; Field, Matthew A; Wangchuk, Phurpa; Giacomin, Paul; Loukas, Alex; Sotillo, Javier


    Whipworms are parasitic nematodes that live in the gut of more than 500 million people worldwide. Owing to the difficulty in obtaining parasite material, the mouse whipworm Trichuris muris has been extensively used as a model to study human whipworm infections. These nematodes secrete a multitude of compounds that interact with host tissues where they orchestrate a parasitic existence. Herein we provide the first comprehensive characterization of the excretory/secretory products of T. muris . We identify 148 proteins secreted by T. muris and show for the first time that the mouse whipworm secretes exosome-like extracellular vesicles (EVs) that can interact with host cells. We use an Optiprep® gradient to purify the EVs, highlighting the suitability of this method for purifying EVs secreted by a parasitic nematode. We also characterize the proteomic and genomic content of the EVs, identifying >350 proteins, 56 miRNAs (22 novel) and 475 full-length mRNA transcripts mapping to T. muris gene models. Many of the miRNAs putatively mapped to mouse genes are involved in regulation of inflammation, implying a role in parasite-driven immunomodulation. In addition, for the first time to our knowledge, colonic organoids have been used to demonstrate the internalization of parasite EVs by host cells. Understanding how parasites interact with their host is crucial to develop new control measures. This first characterization of the proteins and EVs secreted by T. muris provides important information on whipworm-host communication and forms the basis for future studies.

  19. Proteome of cell wall-extracts from pathogenic Paracoccidioides brasiliensis: Comparison among morphological phases, isolates, and reported fungal extracellular vesicle proteins

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Larissa V.G. Longo


    Full Text Available We identified non-covalently linked cell wall proteins from Paracoccidioides brasiliensis yeasts and mycelia, with focus on the yeast pathogenic phase, and correlated them with reported fungal extracellular vesicle proteins. We studied isolates Pb3 and Pb18, which evoke distinct patterns of experimental paracoccidioidomycosis and represent two phylogenetic groups. Proteins were extracted mildly with dithiothreitol, trypsinized, and peptides analyzed by liquid chromatography coupled to high-resolution mass spectrometry. Among 132 yeast-exclusive sequences, 92 were Pb18-exclusive. About 80% of total proteins were classified as secretory, mostly showing non-conventional signals. Extracellular vesicular transportation could be involved, since 60% had orthologs reported in fungal extracellular vesicles.

  20. The protein structure initiative structural genomics knowledgebase. (United States)

    Berman, Helen M; Westbrook, John D; Gabanyi, Margaret J; Tao, Wendy; Shah, Raship; Kouranov, Andrei; Schwede, Torsten; Arnold, Konstantin; Kiefer, Florian; Bordoli, Lorenza; Kopp, Jürgen; Podvinec, Michael; Adams, Paul D; Carter, Lester G; Minor, Wladek; Nair, Rajesh; La Baer, Joshua


    The Protein Structure Initiative Structural Genomics Knowledgebase (PSI SGKB, has been created to turn the products of the PSI structural genomics effort into knowledge that can be used by the biological research community to understand living systems and disease. This resource provides central access to structures in the Protein Data Bank (PDB), along with functional annotations, associated homology models, worldwide protein target tracking information, available protocols and the potential to obtain DNA materials for many of the targets. It also offers the ability to search all of the structural and methodological publications and the innovative technologies that were catalyzed by the PSI's high-throughput research efforts. In collaboration with the Nature Publishing Group, the PSI SGKB provides a research library, editorials about new research advances, news and an events calendar to present a broader view of structural biology and structural genomics. By making these resources freely available, the PSI SGKB serves as a bridge to connect the structural biology and the greater biomedical communities.

  1. Expression of the synaptic vesicle proteins VAMPs/synaptobrevins 1 and 2 in non-neural tissues

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ralston, E; Beushausen, S; Ploug, Thorkil


    for Vp/Syb 2 detected a protein in the endoplasmic reticulum-Golgi area of skeletal muscle. Thus Vp/Sybs 1 and 2 are not restricted to the nervous system but appear to be co-expressed with cellubrevin in many different tissues. This redundancy of Vp/Sybs in a single cell may be required to control......The VAMPs/synaptobrevins (Vp/Sybs) are small integral membrane proteins. Two isoforms, Vp/Syb 1 and Vp/Syb 2, are considered to be specific to neural tissue. They are associated with synaptic vesicles and are believed to play an important role in neurotransmitter release. A third isoform......, cellubrevin, has recently been found in non-neural tissues. We now report that the distribution of Vp/Syb 1 and Vp/Syb 2 is wider than previously thought. RNA transcripts for both Vp/Syb 1 and Vp/Syb 2 were found in rat skeletal muscle and in several other rat non-neural tissues, and antibodies specific...

  2. The dense core vesicle protein IA-2, but not IA-2β, is required for active avoidance learning. (United States)

    Carmona, G N; Nishimura, T; Schindler, C W; Panlilio, L V; Notkins, A L


    The islet-antigens IA-2 and IA-2β are major autoantigens in type-1 diabetes and transmembrane proteins in dense core vesicles (DCV). Recently we showed that deletion of both IA-2 and IA-2β alters the secretion of hormones and neurotransmitters and impairs behavior and learning. The present study was designed to evaluate the contribution to learning of each of these genes by using single knockout (SKO) and double knockout (DKO) mice in an active avoidance test. After 5 days of training, wild-type (WT) mice showed 60-70% active avoidance responses, whereas the DKO mice showed only 10-15% active avoidance responses. The degree of active avoidance responses in the IA-2 SKO mice was similar to that of the DKO mice, but in contrast, the IA-2β SKO mice behaved like WT mice showing 60-70% active avoidance responses. Molecular studies revealed a marked decrease in the phosphorylation of the cAMP response element-binding protein (CREB) and Ca(2+)/calmodulin-dependent protein kinase II (CAMKII) in the striatum and hippocampus of the IA-2 SKO and DKO mice, but not in the IA-2β SKO mice. To evaluate the role of CREB and CAMKII in the SKO and DKO mice, GBR-12909, which selectively blocks the dopamine uptake transporter and increases CREB and CAMKII phosphorylation, was administered. GBR-12909 restored the phosphorylation of CREB and CAMKII and increased active avoidance learning in the DKO and IA-2 SKO to near the normal levels found in the WT and IA-2β SKO mice. We conclude that in the absence of the DCV protein IA-2, active avoidance learning is impaired. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  3. Structure Prediction of Membrane Proteins (United States)

    Hu, Xiche

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

  4. Mutations in Plasmalemma Vesicle Associated Protein Result in Sieving Protein-Losing Enteropathy Characterized by Hypoproteinemia, Hypoalbuminemia, and HypertriglyceridemiaSummary

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Abdul Elkadri


    Full Text Available Background & Aims: Severe intestinal diseases observed in very young children are often the result of monogenic defects. We used whole-exome sequencing (WES to examine genetics in a patient with a distinct severe form of protein-losing enteropathy (PLE characterized by hypoproteinemia, hypoalbuminemia, and hypertriglyceridemia. Methods: WES was performed at the Centre for Applied Genomics, Hospital for Sick Children, Toronto, Canada, and exome library preparation was performed with the Ion Torrent AmpliSeq RDY Exome Kit. Functional studies were based on the identified mutation. Results: Using WES we identified a homozygous nonsense mutation (1072C>T; p.Arg358* in the PLVAP (plasmalemma vesicle-associated protein gene in an infant from consanguineous parents who died at 5 months of age of severe PLE. Functional studies determined that the mutated PLVAP mRNA and protein were not expressed in the patient biopsy tissues, presumably secondary to nonsense-mediated mRNA decay. Pathological analysis showed that the loss of PLVAP resulted in disruption of endothelial fenestrated diaphragms. Conclusions: The PLVAP p.Arg358* mutation resulted in the loss of PLVAP expression with subsequent deletion of the diaphragms of endothelial fenestrae, which led to plasma protein extravasation, PLE, and ultimately death. Keywords: Endothelium, Fenestrae, Hypertriglyceridemia, Hypoalbuminemia, Hypoproteinemia, Very Early Onset Inflammatory Bowel Disease, Monogenic Diseases, Protein-Losing Enteropathy, Whole-Exome Sequencing

  5. Structural modification of unilamellar and multilamellar vesicles in the presence of vitamin D (United States)

    Devarajan, A.; Raouf, Y. A.; Rashid, S.; Law, R. L.; Stojanoff, V.; Isakovic, A. F.; Gater, D. L.

    Chronic vitamin D deficiency is increasingly associated with a range of health conditions, such as cardiovascular disease, diabetes and certain cancers. Our report contributes to a mechanistic understanding of these associations. Vitamin D is a lipophilic compound that is synthesized in the skin by the action of UV light on 7-dehydrocholesterol and obtained from dietary sources. We look at how vitamin D could be extracted from either skin membranes or therapeutic liposomes and transported through the body by its associated proteins. A variety of physical techniques (FTIR, DLS, UV-Vis spectroscopy, NMR, XRD) are brought to investigate: (a) the behavior of vitamin D in model membranes, and (b) the effect of vitamin D-associated proteins on membrane structure. Our results include: (1) vitamin D can be incorporated into DOPC membranes up to 40mol% with only minor changes in the dynamics of the lipid acyl chains; (2) liposomes containing larger quantities of vitamin D may have reduced stability over time; (3) the vitamin D binding protein and the vitamin D receptor do associate with and alter the behavior of model membranes, including systems that do not contain vitamin D. We acknowledge the support from KU-KAIST collaborative Grant program, and support from BNL staff.

  6. Protein Structure Refinement by Optimization

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Carlsen, Martin

    million sequences that are known. Determining the protein structure from its sequence of amino acids is therefore a major problem in computational structural biology and is referred to as the protein folding problem. The folding problem is solved using de novo methods or comparative methods depending...... on whether the three-dimensional structure of a homologous sequence is known. Whether or not a protein model can be used for industrial purposes depends on the quality of the predicted structure. A model can be used to design a drug when the quality is high. The overall goal of this project is to assess...... that correlates maximally to a native-decoy distance. The main contribution of this thesis is methods developed for analyzing the performance of metrically trained knowledge-based potentials and for optimizing their performance while making them less dependent on the decoy set used to define them. We focus...

  7. Gene transfer mediated by fusion protein hemagglutinin reconstituted in cationic lipid vesicles

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Schoen, P; Chonn, A; Cullis, PR; Wilschut, J; Scherrer, P

    Hemagglutinin, the membrane fusion protein of influenza virus,is known to mediate a low-pH-dependent fusion reaction between the viral envelope and the limiting membrane of the endosomal cell compartment following cellular uptake of the virus particles by receptor-mediated endocytosis. Here we

  8. Phosphorylation by Dyrk1A of clathrin coated vesicle-associated proteins: identification of the substrate proteins and the effects of phosphorylation.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Noriko Murakami

    Full Text Available Dyrk1A phosphorylated multiple proteins in the clathrin-coated vesicle (CCV preparations obtained from rat brains. Mass spectrometric analysis identified MAP1A, MAP2, AP180, and α- and β-adaptins as the phosphorylated proteins in the CCVs. Each protein was subsequently confirmed by [(32P]-labeling and immunological methods. The Dyrk1A-mediated phosphorylation released the majority of MAP1A and MAP2 and enhanced the release of AP180 and adaptin subunits from the CCVs. Furthermore, Dyrk1A displaced adaptor proteins physically from CCVs in a kinase-concentration dependent manner. The clathrin heavy chain release rate, in contrast, was not affected by Dyrk1A. Surprisingly, the Dyrk1A-mediated phosphorylation of α- and β-adaptins led to dissociation of the AP2 complex, and released only β-adaptin from the CCVs. AP180 was phosphorylated by Dyrk1A also in the membrane-free fractions, but α- and β-adaptins were not. Dyrk1A was detected in the isolated CCVs and was co-localized with clathrin in neurons from mouse brain sections and from primary cultured rat hippocampus. Previously, we proposed that Dyrk1A inhibits the onset of clathrin-mediated endocytosis in neurons by phosphorylating dynamin 1, amphiphysin 1, and synaptojanin 1. Current results suggest that besides the inhibition, Dyrk1A promotes the uncoating process of endocytosed CCVs.

  9. Binding and Fusion of Extracellular Vesicles to the Plasma Membrane of Their Cell Targets. (United States)

    Prada, Ilaria; Meldolesi, Jacopo


    Exosomes and ectosomes, extracellular vesicles of two types generated by all cells at multivesicular bodies and the plasma membrane, respectively, play critical roles in physiology and pathology. A key mechanism of their function, analogous for both types of vesicles, is the fusion of their membrane to the plasma membrane of specific target cells, followed by discharge to the cytoplasm of their luminal cargo containing proteins, RNAs, and DNA. Here we summarize the present knowledge about the interactions, binding and fusions of vesicles with the cell plasma membrane. The sequence initiates with dynamic interactions, during which vesicles roll over the plasma membrane, followed by the binding of specific membrane proteins to their cell receptors. Membrane binding is then converted rapidly into fusion by mechanisms analogous to those of retroviruses. Specifically, proteins of the extracellular vesicle membranes are structurally rearranged, and their hydrophobic sequences insert into the target cell plasma membrane which undergoes lipid reorganization, protein restructuring and membrane dimpling. Single fusions are not the only process of vesicle/cell interactions. Upon intracellular reassembly of their luminal cargoes, vesicles can be regenerated, released and fused horizontally to other target cells. Fusions of extracellular vesicles are relevant also for specific therapy processes, now intensely investigated.

  10. Protein interfacial structure and nanotoxicology (United States)

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


    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.

  11. A novel role for the centrosomal protein, pericentrin, in regulation of insulin secretory vesicle docking in mouse pancreatic beta-cells.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Agata Jurczyk

    Full Text Available The centrosome is important for microtubule organization and cell cycle progression in animal cells. Recently, mutations in the centrosomal protein, pericentrin, have been linked to human microcephalic osteodysplastic primordial dwarfism (MOPD II, a rare genetic disease characterized by severe growth retardation and early onset of type 2 diabetes among other clinical manifestations. While the link between centrosomal and cell cycle defects may account for growth deficiencies, the mechanism linking pericentrin mutations with dysregulated glucose homeostasis and pre-pubertal onset of diabetes is unknown. In this report we observed abundant expression of pericentrin in quiescent pancreatic beta-cells of normal animals which led us to hypothesize that pericentrin may have a critical function in beta-cells distinct from its known role in regulating cell cycle progression. In addition to the typical centrosome localization, pericentrin was also enriched with secretory vesicles in the cytoplasm. Pericentrin overexpression in beta-cells resulted in aggregation of insulin-containing secretory vesicles with cytoplasmic, but not centrosomal, pericentriolar material and an increase in total levels of intracellular insulin. RNAi- mediated silencing of pericentrin in secretory beta-cells caused dysregulated secretory vesicle hypersecretion of insulin into the media. Together, these data suggest that pericentrin may regulate the intracellular distribution and secretion of insulin. Mice transplanted with pericentrin-depleted islets exhibited abnormal fasting hypoglycemia and inability to regulate blood glucose normally during a glucose challenge, which is consistent with our in vitro data. This previously unrecognized function for a centrosomal protein to mediate vesicle docking in secretory endocrine cells emphasizes the adaptability of these scaffolding proteins to regulate diverse cellular processes and identifies a novel target for modulating regulated

  12. How Permissive Are Protein Structures? (United States)

    Hecht, Michael


    How permissive are protein structures? Can folded structures be isolated from combinatorial libraries of de novo amino acid sequences? We have developed an approach that benefits from the diversity of combinatorial methods, while simultaneously incorporating key design features that favor desired structures and properties. Our strategy is based on the premise that the locations of polar and nonpolar residues must be specified explicitly, but their precise identities can be varied extensively. Thus, the strategy uses a "binary code" that specifies only whether a given position is hydrophobic or hydrophilic. Since the precise identity of each polar or nonpolar residue is not specified, the binary code strategy facilitates the design and construction of libraries with enormous combinatorial diversity. Experiments will be presented describing binary code libraries of proteins designed for (i) structure (alpha-helical and beta-sheet); (ii) cofactor binding; (iii) catalytic activity; and (iv) assembly into fibrils resembling the amyloid found in neurodegenerative diseases.

  13. Structural entanglements in protein complexes (United States)

    Zhao, Yani; Chwastyk, Mateusz; Cieplak, Marek


    We consider multi-chain protein native structures and propose a criterion that determines whether two chains in the system are entangled or not. The criterion is based on the behavior observed by pulling at both termini of each chain simultaneously in the two chains. We have identified about 900 entangled systems in the Protein Data Bank and provided a more detailed analysis for several of them. We argue that entanglement enhances the thermodynamic stability of the system but it may have other functions: burying the hydrophobic residues at the interface and increasing the DNA or RNA binding area. We also study the folding and stretching properties of the knotted dimeric proteins MJ0366, YibK, and bacteriophytochrome. These proteins have been studied theoretically in their monomeric versions so far. The dimers are seen to separate on stretching through the tensile mechanism and the characteristic unraveling force depends on the pulling direction.

  14. How Do Rab Proteins Determine Golgi Structure? (United States)

    Liu, Shijie; Storrie, Brian


    Rab proteins, small GTPases, are key regulators of mammalian Golgi apparatus organization. Based on the effect of Rab activation state, Rab proteins fall into two functional classes. In Class1, inactivation induces Golgi ribbon fragmentation and/or redistribution of Golgi enzymes to the ER, while overexpression of wild type or activation has little, if any, effect on Golgi ribbon organization. In Class 2, the reverse is true. We give emphasis to Rab6, the most abundant Golgi-associated Rab protein. Rab6 depletion in HeLa cells causes an increase in Golgi cisternal number, longer, more continuous cisternae, and a pronounced accumulation of vesicles; the effect of Rab6 on Golgi ribbon organization is probably through regulation of vesicle transport. In effector studies, motor proteins and their regulators are found to be key Rab6 effectors. A related Rab, Rab41, affects Golgi ribbon organization in a contrasting manner. The balance between minus- and plus-end directed motor recruitment may well be the major Rab-dependent factor in Golgi ribbon organization. PMID:25708460

  15. Isolation and characterization of urinary extracellular vesicles: implications for biomarker discovery. (United States)

    Merchant, Michael L; Rood, Ilse M; Deegens, Jeroen K J; Klein, Jon B


    Urine is a valuable diagnostic medium and, with the discovery of urinary extracellular vesicles, is viewed as a dynamic bioactive fluid. Extracellular vesicles are lipid-enclosed structures that can be classified into three categories: exosomes, microvesicles (or ectosomes) and apoptotic bodies. This classification is based on the mechanisms by which membrane vesicles are formed: fusion of multivesicular bodies with the plasma membranes (exosomes), budding of vesicles directly from the plasma membrane (microvesicles) or those shed from dying cells (apoptotic bodies). During their formation, urinary extracellular vesicles incorporate various cell-specific components (proteins, lipids and nucleic acids) that can be transferred to target cells. The rigour needed for comparative studies has fueled the search for optimal approaches for their isolation, purification, and characterization. RNA, the newest extracellular vesicle component to be discovered, has received substantial attention as an extracellular vesicle therapeutic, and compelling evidence suggests that ex vivo manipulation of microRNA composition may have uses in the treatment of kidney disorders. The results of these studies are building the case that urinary extracellular vesicles act as mediators of renal pathophysiology. As the field of extracellular vesicle studies is burgeoning, this Review focuses on primary data obtained from studies of human urine rather than on data from studies of laboratory animals or cultured immortalized cells.

  16. Fusion Competent Synaptic Vesicles Persist upon Active Zone Disruption and Loss of Vesicle Docking. (United States)

    Wang, Shan Shan H; Held, Richard G; Wong, Man Yan; Liu, Changliang; Karakhanyan, Aziz; Kaeser, Pascal S


    In a nerve terminal, synaptic vesicle docking and release are restricted to an active zone. The active zone is a protein scaffold that is attached to the presynaptic plasma membrane and opposed to postsynaptic receptors. Here, we generated conditional knockout mice removing the active zone proteins RIM and ELKS, which additionally led to loss of Munc13, Bassoon, Piccolo, and RIM-BP, indicating disassembly of the active zone. We observed a near-complete lack of synaptic vesicle docking and a strong reduction in vesicular release probability and the speed of exocytosis, but total vesicle numbers, SNARE protein levels, and postsynaptic densities remained unaffected. Despite loss of the priming proteins Munc13 and RIM and of docked vesicles, a pool of releasable vesicles remained. Thus, the active zone is necessary for synaptic vesicle docking and to enhance release probability, but releasable vesicles can be localized distant from the presynaptic plasma membrane. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  17. Structure formation of lipid membranes: Membrane self-assembly and vesicle opening-up to octopus-like micelles (United States)

    Noguchi, Hiroshi


    We briefly review our recent studies on self-assembly and vesicle rupture of lipid membranes using coarse-grained molecular simulations. For single component membranes, lipid molecules self-assemble from random gas states to vesicles via disk-shaped clusters. Clusters aggregate into larger clusters, and subsequently the large disks close into vesicles. The size of vesicles are determined by kinetics than by thermodynamics. When a vesicle composed of lipid and detergent types of molecules is ruptured, a disk-shaped micelle called bicelle can be formed. When both surfactants have negligibly low critical micelle concentration, it is found that bicelles connected with worm-like micelles are also formed depending on the surfactant ratio and spontaneous curvature of the membrane monolayer.

  18. Algorithms for Protein Structure Prediction

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Paluszewski, Martin

    ) is more robust than standard Monte Carlo search. In the second approach for reconstruction of C-traces, an exact branch and bound algorithm has been developed [67, 65]. The model is discrete and makes use of secondary structure predictions, HSE, CN and radius of gyration. We show how to compute good lower......The problem of predicting the three-dimensional structure of a protein given its amino acid sequence is one of the most important open problems in bioinformatics. One of the carbon atoms in amino acids is the C-atom and the overall structure of a protein is often represented by a so-called C......-trace. Here we present three different approaches for reconstruction of C-traces from predictable measures. In our first approach [63, 62], the C-trace is positioned on a lattice and a tabu-search algorithm is applied to find minimum energy structures. The energy function is based on half-sphere-exposure (HSE...

  19. FIJI Macro 3D ART VeSElecT: 3D Automated Reconstruction Tool for Vesicle Structures of Electron Tomograms.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kristin Verena Kaltdorf


    Full Text Available Automatic image reconstruction is critical to cope with steadily increasing data from advanced microscopy. We describe here the Fiji macro 3D ART VeSElecT which we developed to study synaptic vesicles in electron tomograms. We apply this tool to quantify vesicle properties (i in embryonic Danio rerio 4 and 8 days past fertilization (dpf and (ii to compare Caenorhabditis elegans N2 neuromuscular junctions (NMJ wild-type and its septin mutant (unc-59(e261. We demonstrate development-specific and mutant-specific changes in synaptic vesicle pools in both models. We confirm the functionality of our macro by applying our 3D ART VeSElecT on zebrafish NMJ showing smaller vesicles in 8 dpf embryos then 4 dpf, which was validated by manual reconstruction of the vesicle pool. Furthermore, we analyze the impact of C. elegans septin mutant unc-59(e261 on vesicle pool formation and vesicle size. Automated vesicle registration and characterization was implemented in Fiji as two macros (registration and measurement. This flexible arrangement allows in particular reducing false positives by an optional manual revision step. Preprocessing and contrast enhancement work on image-stacks of 1nm/pixel in x and y direction. Semi-automated cell selection was integrated. 3D ART VeSElecT removes interfering components, detects vesicles by 3D segmentation and calculates vesicle volume and diameter (spherical approximation, inner/outer diameter. Results are collected in color using the RoiManager plugin including the possibility of manual removal of non-matching confounder vesicles. Detailed evaluation considered performance (detected vesicles and specificity (true vesicles as well as precision and recall. We furthermore show gain in segmentation and morphological filtering compared to learning based methods and a large time gain compared to manual segmentation. 3D ART VeSElecT shows small error rates and its speed gain can be up to 68 times faster in comparison to manual

  20. Immunotherapeutic Potential of Extracellular Vesicles


    Zhang, Bin; Yin, Yijun; Lai, Ruenn Chai; Lim, Sai Kiang


    Extracellular vesicle or EV is a term that encompasses all classes of secreted lipid membrane vesicles. Despite being scientific novelties, EVs are gaining importance as a mediator of important physiological and pathological intercellular activities possibly through the transfer of their cargo of protein and RNA between cells. In particular, exosomes, the currently best characterized EVs have been notable for their in vitro and in vivo immunomodulatory activities. Exosomes are nanometer-sized...

  1. Fractal aspects of calcium binding protein structures

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Isvoran, Adriana [West University of Timisoara, Department of Chemistry, Pestalozzi 16, 300115 Timisoara (Romania)], E-mail:; Pitulice, Laura [West University of Timisoara, Department of Chemistry, Pestalozzi 16, 300115 Timisoara (Romania); Craescu, Constantin T. [INSERM U759/Institute Curie-Recherche, Centre Universitaire Paris-Sud, Batiment 112, 91405 Orsay (France); Chiriac, Adrian [West University of Timisoara, Department of Chemistry, Pestalozzi 16, 300115 Timisoara (Romania)


    The structures of EF-hand calcium binding proteins may be classified into two distinct groups: extended and compact structures. In this paper we studied 20 different structures of calcium binding proteins using the fractal analysis. Nine structures show extended shapes, one is semi-compact and the other 10 have compact shapes. Our study reveals different fractal characteristics for protein backbones belonging to different structural classes and these observations may be correlated to the physicochemical forces governing the protein folding.

  2. Relationship between protein structure and geometrical constrains

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lund, Ole; Hansen, Jan; Brunak, Søren


    We evaluate to what extent the structure of proteins can be deduced from incomplete knowledge of disulfide bridges, surface assignments, secondary structure assignments, and additional distance constraints. A cost function taking such constraints into account was used to obtain protein structures...... using a simple minimization algorithm. For small proteins, the approximate structure could be obtained using one additional distance constraint for each amino acid in the protein. We also studied the effect of using predicted secondary structure and surface assignments. The constraints used...

  3. Relationship between protein structure and geometrical constraints

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lund, Ole; Hansen, Jan; Brunak, Søren


    We evaluate to what extent the structure of proteins can be deduced from incomplete knowledge of disulfide bridges, surface assignments, secondary structure assignments, and additional distance constraints. A cost function taking such constraints into account was used to obtain protein structures...... using a simple minimization algorithm. For small proteins, the approximate structure could be obtained using one additional distance constraint for each amino acid in the protein. We also studied the effect of using predicted secondary structure and surface assignments. The constraints used...

  4. A novel isolation strategy for obtaining crude membrane vesicles from bovine skim milk

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Blans, Kristine; Larsen, Lotte Bach; Wiking, Lars


    Bovine milks content of phospholipid membranes have largely been explored in the cream fraction, and known as the milk fat globule membrane that surrounds fat droplets. In skim milk, the population of phospholipid membranes is reported to constitute membrane vesicles with a soluble content known...... components. Here we present a novel strategy for a short, gentle and non-denaturing isolation of skim milk-derived membrane vesicles. Methods: Untreated fresh bovine milk was defatted to remove milk fat globules. The resulting skim milk was subjected to ultracentrifugation. The resulting ochre...... fraction can be obtained from skim milk by ultracentrifugation. Casein micelle remnants as well as smaller protein components in the crude vesicle fraction can be successfully removed by size chromatography. Electron microscopy of the vesicle isolate reveals circular structures with membrane vesicle...

  5. The origin, function, and diagnostic potential of RNA within extracellular vesicles present in human biological fluids (United States)

    Taylor, Douglas D.; Gercel-Taylor, Cicek


    We have previously demonstrated that tumor cells release membranous structures into their extracellular environment, which are termed exosomes, microvesicles or extracellular vesicles depending on specific characteristics, including size, composition and biogenesis pathway. These cell-derived vesicles can exhibit an array of proteins, lipids and nucleic acids derived from the originating tumor. This review focuses of the transcriptome (RNA) of these extracellular vesicles. Based on current data, these vesicular components play essential roles as conveyers of intercellular communication and mediators of many of the pathological conditions associated with cancer development, progression and therapeutic failures. These extracellular vesicles express components responsible for angiogenesis promotion, stromal remodeling, signal pathway activation through growth factor/receptor transfer, chemoresistance, and genetic exchange. These tumor-derived extracellular vesicles not only to represent a central mediator of the tumor microenvironment, but their presence in the peripheral circulation may serve as a surrogate for tumor biopsies, enabling real-time diagnosis and disease monitoring. PMID:23908664

  6. Structural and Genetic Studies Demonstrate Neurologic Dysfunction in Triosephosphate Isomerase Deficiency Is Associated with Impaired Synaptic Vesicle Dynamics

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Roland, Bartholomew P.; Zeccola, Alison M.; Larsen, Samantha B.; Amrich, Christopher G.; Talsma, Aaron D.; Stuchul, Kimberly A.; Heroux, Annie; Levitan, Edwin S.; VanDemark, Andrew P.; Palladino, Michael J.; Pallanck, Leo J.


    Triosephosphate isomerase (TPI) deficiency is a poorly understood disease characterized by hemolytic anemia, cardiomyopathy, neurologic dysfunction, and early death. TPI deficiency is one of a group of diseases known as glycolytic enzymopathies, but is unique for its severe patient neuropathology and early mortality. The disease is caused by missense mutations and dysfunction in the glycolytic enzyme, TPI. Previous studies have detailed structural and catalytic changes elicited by disease-associated TPI substitutions, and samples of patient erythrocytes have yielded insight into patient hemolytic anemia; however, the neuropathophysiology of this disease remains a mystery. This study combines structural, biochemical, and genetic approaches to demonstrate that perturbations of the TPI dimer interface are sufficient to elicit TPI deficiency neuropathogenesis. The present study demonstrates that neurologic dysfunction resulting from TPI deficiency is characterized by synaptic vesicle dysfunction, and can be attenuated with catalytically inactive TPI. Collectively, our findings are the first to identify, to our knowledge, a functional synaptic defect in TPI deficiency derived from molecular changes in the TPI dimer interface.

  7. Introduction to Protein Structure through Genetic Diseases (United States)

    Schneider, Tanya L.; Linton, Brian R.


    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…

  8. Relationship between protein structure and geometrical constraints.


    Lund, O.; Hansen, J.; Brunak, S.; Bohr, J.


    We evaluate to what extent the structure of proteins can be deduced from incomplete knowledge of disulfide bridges, surface assignments, secondary structure assignments, and additional distance constraints. A cost function taking such constraints into account was used to obtain protein structures using a simple minimization algorithm. For small proteins, the approximate structure could be obtained using one additional distance constraint for each amino acid in the protein. We also studied the...

  9. An Interactive Introduction to Protein Structure (United States)

    Lee, W. Theodore


    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…

  10. Best practice of identification and proteomic analysis of extracellular vesicles in human health and disease. (United States)

    Sódar, Barbara W; Kovács, Árpád; Visnovitz, Tamás; Pállinger, Éva; Vékey, Károly; Pocsfalvi, Gabriella; Turiák, Lilla; Buzás, Edit I


    Extracellular vesicles are emerging sources of biomarkers for modern preventive and precision medicine. Extracellular vesicles in body fluids offer a unique opportunity for integrative biomarker approaches due to their complex biocargo that includes proteins, lipids, nucleic acids and metabolites. Mass spectrometry-based proteomics data suggest that a significant portion of human proteins are sorted into extracellular vesicles and amenable for biomarker discovery schemes. Areas covered: this review focuses on key aspects of isolation, quality control and subsequent analysis of blood plasma- and conditioned medium-derived extracellular vesicle proteins, and summarizes the current state-of-the-art in the field. Furthermore, it provides introduction and guidelines for mass spectrometry-based proteomic analysis of extracellular vesicles. Expert commentary: Comparison of newly developed isolation and purification techniques with classical ultracentrifugation-based approaches are highly recommended. It is also essential to use multiple analytical approaches to characterize the isolated extracellular vesicles prior to characterization of their biocargo. Rigor in data reproducibility, critical data analysis, awareness of potential pitfalls, standardization and benchmarking are required for extracellular vesicle research to fulfil the current expectation that these subcellular structures can become a valid source of next generation biomarkers.

  11. The Ciliopathy Protein CC2D2A Associates with NINL and Functions in RAB8-MICAL3-Regulated Vesicle Trafficking.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ruxandra Bachmann-Gagescu


    Full Text Available Ciliopathies are a group of human disorders caused by dysfunction of primary cilia, ubiquitous microtubule-based organelles involved in transduction of extra-cellular signals to the cell. This function requires the concentration of receptors and channels in the ciliary membrane, which is achieved by complex trafficking mechanisms, in part controlled by the small GTPase RAB8, and by sorting at the transition zone located at the entrance of the ciliary compartment. Mutations in the transition zone gene CC2D2A cause the related Joubert and Meckel syndromes, two typical ciliopathies characterized by central nervous system malformations, and result in loss of ciliary localization of multiple proteins in various models. The precise mechanisms by which CC2D2A and other transition zone proteins control protein entrance into the cilium and how they are linked to vesicular trafficking of incoming cargo remain largely unknown. In this work, we identify the centrosomal protein NINL as a physical interaction partner of CC2D2A. NINL partially co-localizes with CC2D2A at the base of cilia and ninl knockdown in zebrafish leads to photoreceptor outer segment loss, mislocalization of opsins and vesicle accumulation, similar to cc2d2a-/- phenotypes. Moreover, partial ninl knockdown in cc2d2a-/- embryos enhances the retinal phenotype of the mutants, indicating a genetic interaction in vivo, for which an illustration is found in patients from a Joubert Syndrome cohort. Similar to zebrafish cc2d2a mutants, ninl morphants display altered Rab8a localization. Further exploration of the NINL-associated interactome identifies MICAL3, a protein known to interact with Rab8 and to play an important role in vesicle docking and fusion. Together, these data support a model where CC2D2A associates with NINL to provide a docking point for cilia-directed cargo vesicles, suggesting a mechanism by which transition zone proteins can control the protein content of the ciliary

  12. Retention of structure and function of the cat germinal vesicle after air-drying and storage at suprazero temperature. (United States)

    Graves-Herring, Jennifer E; Wildt, David E; Comizzoli, Pierre


    The study explored a novel approach for preserving the maternal genome without the entire oocyte by air-drying the cat germinal vesicle (GV) in the presence of the disaccharide trehalose. Specifically, we examined GV structure and function after desiccation, storage at 4 °C (up to 32 wk), and rehydration including the ability to resume meiosis after injection into a fresh, conspecific cytoplast. In experiment 1, DNA integrity was similar to fresh controls after 1 and 4 wk storage in the presence of trehalose, but was more fragmented at later time points (especially after 32 wk). Nuclear envelope integrity was sustained in >90% of oocytes stored for 0, 4, or 16 wk regardless of protective treatment. In experiment 2, compacted, air-dried GVs were stored for 2 or 4 wk, rehydrated, and injected into fresh cytoplasts. After culture for 24 h in vitro, up to 73% of oocytes reconstructed with desiccated GVs preserved in trehalose resumed meiosis compared to 30% of those dried in the absence of the disaccharide. At each storage time point, trehalose presence during air-drying was advantageous for resumption of meiosis, with >20% of oocytes completing nuclear maturation to metaphase II. This demonstrates a potential for preserving the female genome using the GV alone and for multiple weeks after desiccation. Trehalose enhanced the process by retaining the ability of a dried and rehydrated GV to resume communication with the surrounding cytoplasm of the recipient oocyte to permit reaching metaphase II and likely sustain subsequent embryo development.

  13. Self-assembly, aggregates morphology and ionic liquid crystal of polyoxometalate-based hybrid molecule: From vesicles to layered structure (United States)

    Tan, Chunxia


    Polyoxometalate anions [SiW12O40]4- were encapsulated by four 1, 3-dioctadecylimidazolium cations (labeled as L+) driven by electrostatic interaction to obtain hybrid molecule L4[SiW12O40]. The composition and ingredients of L4[SiW12O40] were confirmed by infrared spectroscopy (IR) and elemental analysis. In mixedsolvent (chloroform/methanol volume of 4:1), the self-assembled aggregates of L4[SiW12O40] appear at multilamllar vesicles under optical microscopy and the micron-size bulky flower-like aggregates in scanning electron microscopy (SEM). However, Transmission electron microscopy (TEM) images and small-angle X-ray diffraction (XRD) of L4[SiW12O40] demonstrate that spherical aggregations in mixed-solvent are densely packed by flakes, which can self-assembly into ordered one dimension layered structure. In addition, L4[SiW12O40] shows typical thermotropic liquid crystal behavior similar to imidazole cations. The ordered self-assembly hybrid molecule materials based on organic-polyoxometalate ionic liquids would be exciting branch of nanostructure functional materials.

  14. Small Changes in the Primary Structure of Transportan 10 Alter the Thermodynamics and Kinetics of its Interaction with Phospholipid Vesicles (United States)


    The kinetics and thermodynamics of binding of transportan 10 (tp10) and four of its variants to phospholipid vesicles, and the kinetics of peptide-induced dye efflux, were compared. Tp10 is a 21-residue, amphipathic, cationic, cell-penetrating peptide similar to helical antimicrobial peptides. The tp10 variants examined include amidated and free peptides, and replacements of tyrosine by tryptophan. Carboxy-terminal amidation or substitution of tryptophan for tyrosine enhance binding and activity. The Gibbs energies of peptide binding to membranes determined experimentally and calculated from the interfacial hydrophobicity scale are in good agreement. The Gibbs energy for insertion into the bilayer core was calculated using hydrophobicity scales of residue transfer from water to octanol and to the membrane/water interface. Peptide-induced efflux becomes faster as the Gibbs energies for binding and insertion of the tp10 variants decrease. If anionic lipids are included, binding and efflux rate increase, as expected because all tp10 variants are cationic and an electrostatic component is added. Whether the most important effect of peptide amidation is the change in charge or an enhancement of helical structure, however, still needs to be established. Nevertheless, it is clear that the changes in efflux rate reflect the differences in the thermodynamics of binding and insertion of the free and amidated peptide groups. PMID:18260641

  15. The Human Pathogen Streptococcus pyogenes Releases Lipoproteins as Lipoprotein-rich Membrane Vesicles. (United States)

    Biagini, Massimiliano; Garibaldi, Manuela; Aprea, Susanna; Pezzicoli, Alfredo; Doro, Francesco; Becherelli, Marco; Taddei, Anna Rita; Tani, Chiara; Tavarini, Simona; Mora, Marirosa; Teti, Giuseppe; D'Oro, Ugo; Nuti, Sandra; Soriani, Marco; Margarit, Immaculada; Rappuoli, Rino; Grandi, Guido; Norais, Nathalie


    Bacterial lipoproteins are attractive vaccine candidates because they represent a major class of cell surface-exposed proteins in many bacteria and are considered as potential pathogen-associated molecular patterns sensed by Toll-like receptors with built-in adjuvanticity. Although Gram-negative lipoproteins have been extensively characterized, little is known about Gram-positive lipoproteins. We isolated from Streptococcus pyogenes a large amount of lipoproteins organized in vesicles. These vesicles were obtained by weakening the bacterial cell wall with a sublethal concentration of penicillin. Lipid and proteomic analysis of the vesicles revealed that they were enriched in phosphatidylglycerol and almost exclusively composed of lipoproteins. In association with lipoproteins, a few hypothetical proteins, penicillin-binding proteins, and several members of the ExPortal, a membrane microdomain responsible for the maturation of secreted proteins, were identified. The typical lipidic moiety was apparently not necessary for lipoprotein insertion in the vesicle bilayer because they were also recovered from the isogenic diacylglyceryl transferase deletion mutant. The vesicles were not able to activate specific Toll-like receptor 2, indicating that lipoproteins organized in these vesicular structures do not act as pathogen-associated molecular patterns. In light of these findings, we propose to name these new structures Lipoprotein-rich Membrane Vesicles. © 2015 by The American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Inc.

  16. Cystinosin, MPDU1, SWEETs and KDELR belong to a well-defined protein family with putative function of cargo receptors involved in vesicle trafficking. (United States)

    Saudek, Vladimir


    Classification of proteins into families based on remote homology often helps prediction of their biological function. Here we describe prediction of protein cargo receptors involved in vesicle formation and protein trafficking. Hidden Markov model profile-to-profile searches in protein databases using endoplasmic reticulum lumen protein retaining receptors (KDEL, Erd2) as query reveal a large and diverse family of proteins with seven transmembrane helices and common topology and, most likely, similar function. Their coding genes exist in all eukaryota and in several prokaryota. Some are responsible for metabolic diseases (cystinosis, congenital disorder of glycosylation), others are candidate genes for genetic disorders (cleft lip and palate, certain forms of cancer) or solute uptake and efflux (SWEETs) and many have not yet been assigned a function. Comparison with the properties of KDEL receptors suggests that the family members could be involved in protein trafficking and serve as cargo receptors. This prediction sheds new light on a range of biologically, medically and agronomically important proteins and could open the way to discovering the function of many genes not yet annotated. Experimental testing is suggested.

  17. Neural Networks for protein Structure Prediction

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bohr, Henrik


    This is a review about neural network applications in bioinformatics. Especially the applications to protein structure prediction, e.g. prediction of secondary structures, prediction of surface structure, fold class recognition and prediction of the 3-dimensional structure of protein backbones...

  18. Sucralose Destabilization of Protein Structure (United States)

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


    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.

  19. Structure-based barcoding of proteins. (United States)

    Metri, Rahul; Jerath, Gaurav; Kailas, Govind; Gacche, Nitin; Pal, Adityabarna; Ramakrishnan, Vibin


    A reduced representation in the format of a barcode has been developed to provide an overview of the topological nature of a given protein structure from 3D coordinate file. The molecular structure of a protein coordinate file from Protein Data Bank is first expressed in terms of an alpha-numero code and further converted to a barcode image. The barcode representation can be used to compare and contrast different proteins based on their structure. The utility of this method has been exemplified by comparing structural barcodes of proteins that belong to same fold family, and across different folds. In addition to this, we have attempted to provide an illustration to (i) the structural changes often seen in a given protein molecule upon interaction with ligands and (ii) Modifications in overall topology of a given protein during evolution. The program is fully downloadable from the website © 2013 The Protein Society.

  20. The Formation of Protein Structure

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bohr, Jakob; Bohr, Henrik; Brunak, Søren


    Dynamically induced curvature owing to long-range excitations along the backbones of protein molecules with non-linear elastic properties may control the folding of proteins.......Dynamically induced curvature owing to long-range excitations along the backbones of protein molecules with non-linear elastic properties may control the folding of proteins....

  1. Single-step isolation of extracellular vesicles by size-exclusion chromatography. (United States)

    Böing, Anita N; van der Pol, Edwin; Grootemaat, Anita E; Coumans, Frank A W; Sturk, Auguste; Nieuwland, Rienk


    Isolation of extracellular vesicles from plasma is a challenge due to the presence of proteins and lipoproteins. Isolation of vesicles using differential centrifugation or density-gradient ultracentrifugation results in co-isolation of contaminants such as protein aggregates and incomplete separation of vesicles from lipoproteins, respectively. To develop a single-step protocol to isolate vesicles from human body fluids. Platelet-free supernatant, derived from platelet concentrates, was loaded on a sepharose CL-2B column to perform size-exclusion chromatography (SEC; n=3). Fractions were collected and analysed by nanoparticle tracking analysis, resistive pulse sensing, flow cytometry and transmission electron microscopy. The concentrations of high-density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL) and protein were measured in each fraction. Fractions 9-12 contained the highest concentrations of particles larger than 70 nm and platelet-derived vesicles (46%±6 and 61%±2 of totals present in all collected fractions, respectively), but less than 5% of HDL and less than 1% of protein (4.8%±1 and 0.65%±0.3, respectively). HDL was present mainly in fractions 18-20 (32%±2 of total), and protein in fractions 19-21 (36%±2 of total). Compared to the starting material, recovery of platelet-derived vesicles was 43%±23 in fractions 9-12, with an 8-fold and 70-fold enrichment compared to HDL and protein. SEC efficiently isolates extracellular vesicles with a diameter larger than 70 nm from platelet-free supernatant of platelet concentrates. Application SEC will improve studies on the dimensional, structural and functional properties of extracellular vesicles.

  2. Single-step isolation of extracellular vesicles by size-exclusion chromatography

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anita N. Böing


    Full Text Available Background: Isolation of extracellular vesicles from plasma is a challenge due to the presence of proteins and lipoproteins. Isolation of vesicles using differential centrifugation or density-gradient ultracentrifugation results in co-isolation of contaminants such as protein aggregates and incomplete separation of vesicles from lipoproteins, respectively. Aim: To develop a single-step protocol to isolate vesicles from human body fluids. Methods: Platelet-free supernatant, derived from platelet concentrates, was loaded on a sepharose CL-2B column to perform size-exclusion chromatography (SEC; n=3. Fractions were collected and analysed by nanoparticle tracking analysis, resistive pulse sensing, flow cytometry and transmission electron microscopy. The concentrations of high-density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL and protein were measured in each fraction. Results: Fractions 9–12 contained the highest concentrations of particles larger than 70 nm and platelet-derived vesicles (46%±6 and 61%±2 of totals present in all collected fractions, respectively, but less than 5% of HDL and less than 1% of protein (4.8%±1 and 0.65%±0.3, respectively. HDL was present mainly in fractions 18–20 (32%±2 of total, and protein in fractions 19–21 (36%±2 of total. Compared to the starting material, recovery of platelet-derived vesicles was 43%±23 in fractions 9–12, with an 8-fold and 70-fold enrichment compared to HDL and protein. Conclusions: SEC efficiently isolates extracellular vesicles with a diameter larger than 70 nm from platelet-free supernatant of platelet concentrates. Application SEC will improve studies on the dimensional, structural and functional properties of extracellular vesicles.

  3. Single-step isolation of extracellular vesicles by size-exclusion chromatography (United States)

    Böing, Anita N.; van der Pol, Edwin; Grootemaat, Anita E.; Coumans, Frank A. W.; Sturk, Auguste; Nieuwland, Rienk


    Background Isolation of extracellular vesicles from plasma is a challenge due to the presence of proteins and lipoproteins. Isolation of vesicles using differential centrifugation or density-gradient ultracentrifugation results in co-isolation of contaminants such as protein aggregates and incomplete separation of vesicles from lipoproteins, respectively. Aim To develop a single-step protocol to isolate vesicles from human body fluids. Methods Platelet-free supernatant, derived from platelet concentrates, was loaded on a sepharose CL-2B column to perform size-exclusion chromatography (SEC; n=3). Fractions were collected and analysed by nanoparticle tracking analysis, resistive pulse sensing, flow cytometry and transmission electron microscopy. The concentrations of high-density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL) and protein were measured in each fraction. Results Fractions 9–12 contained the highest concentrations of particles larger than 70 nm and platelet-derived vesicles (46%±6 and 61%±2 of totals present in all collected fractions, respectively), but less than 5% of HDL and less than 1% of protein (4.8%±1 and 0.65%±0.3, respectively). HDL was present mainly in fractions 18–20 (32%±2 of total), and protein in fractions 19–21 (36%±2 of total). Compared to the starting material, recovery of platelet-derived vesicles was 43%±23 in fractions 9–12, with an 8-fold and 70-fold enrichment compared to HDL and protein. Conclusions SEC efficiently isolates extracellular vesicles with a diameter larger than 70 nm from platelet-free supernatant of platelet concentrates. Application SEC will improve studies on the dimensional, structural and functional properties of extracellular vesicles. PMID:25279113

  4. Gauge symmetries and structure of proteins

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Molochkov Alexander


    Full Text Available We discuss the gauge field theory approach to protein structure study, which allows a natural way to introduce collective degrees of freedom and nonlinear topological structures. Local symmetry of proteins and its breaking in the medium is considered, what allows to derive Abelian Higgs model of protein backbone, correct folding of which is defined by gauge symmetry breaking due hydrophobic forces. Within this model structure of protein backbone is defined by superposition of one-dimensional topological solitons (kinks, what allows to reproduce the three-dimensional structure of the protein backbone with precision up to 1A and to predict its dynamics.

  5. Extracellular Vesicles in Renal Pathophysiology. (United States)

    Pomatto, Margherita A C; Gai, Chiara; Bussolati, Benedetta; Camussi, Giovanni


    Extracellular vesicles are a heterogeneous population of microparticles released by virtually all living cells which have been recently widely investigated in different biological fields. They are typically composed of two primary types (exosomes and microvesicles) and are recently commanding increasing attention as mediators of cellular signaling. Indeed, these vesicles can affect recipient cells by carrying and delivering complex cargos of biomolecules (including proteins, lipids and nucleic acids), protected from enzymatic degradation in the environment. Their importance has been demonstrated in the pathophysiology of several organs, in particular in kidney, where different cell types secrete extracellular vesicles that mediate their communication with downstream urinary tract cells. Over the past few years, evidence has been shown that vesicles participate in kidney development and normal physiology. Moreover, EVs are widely demonstrated to be implicated in cellular signaling during renal regenerative and pathological processes. Although many EV mechanisms are still poorly understood, in particular in kidney, the discovery of their role could help to shed light on renal biological processes which are so far elusive. Lastly, extracellular vesicles secreted by renal cells gather in urine, thus becoming a great resource for disease or recovery markers and a promising non-invasive diagnostic instrument for renal disease. In the present review, we discuss the most recent findings on the role of extracellular vesicles in renal physiopathology and their potential implication in diagnosis and therapy.

  6. Constrained Peptides as Miniature Protein Structures (United States)

    Yin, Hang


    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

  7. Structural basis of cargo membrane protein discrimination by the human COPII coat machinery

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Mancias, Joseph D.; Goldberg, Jonathan (MSKCC)


    Genomic analysis shows that the increased complexity of trafficking pathways in mammalian cells involves an expansion of the number of SNARE, Rab and COP proteins. Thus, the human genome encodes four forms of Sec24, the cargo selection subunit of the COPII vesicular coat, and this is proposed to increase the range of cargo accommodated by human COPII-coated vesicles. In this study, we combined X-ray crystallographic and biochemical analysis with functional assays of cargo packaging into COPII vesicles to establish molecular mechanisms for cargo discrimination by human Sec24 subunits. A conserved IxM packaging signal binds in a surface groove of Sec24c and Sec24d, but the groove is occluded in the Sec24a and Sec24b subunits. Conversely, LxxLE class transport signals and the DxE signal of VSV glycoprotein are selectively bound by Sec24a and Sec24b subunits. A comparative analysis of crystal structures of the four human Sec24 isoforms establishes the structural determinants for discrimination among these transport signals, and provides a framework to understand how an expansion of coat subunits extends the range of cargo proteins packaged into COPII-coated vesicles.

  8. Characterisation of extracellular vesicle-subsets derived from brain endothelial cells and analysis of their protein cargo modulation after TNF exposure. (United States)

    Dozio, Vito; Sanchez, Jean-Charles


    Little is known about the composition and functional differences between extracellular vesicle (EV) subsets, such as microvesicles (MVs) and exosomes (EXOs), nor to what extent their cargo reflects the phenotypic state of the cell of origin. Brain endothelial cells are the constitutive part of the blood-brain barrier (BBB), a selective barrier that maintains brain homeostasis. BBB impairment is associated with several neuroinflammatory diseases with the pro-inflammatory cytokine tumour necrosis factor (TNF) often playing a key role. In the present study, shotgun proteomics and parallel reaction monitoring (PRM)-based targeted mass spectrometry were used to characterise brain endothelial cell-released EVs, and to study how TNF exposure modulated EV protein cargoes. MVs were found to be enriched in mitochondrial and cytoskeletal proteins, whereas EXOs were enriched in adhesion, histone and ribosomal proteins. After stimulation with TNF, several proteins involved in TNF and NF-κB signalling pathways, that were found to be differentially expressed in cells, were also differentially expressed in both MVs and EXOs. Thus, our results revealed some novel proteins as potentially useful candidates for discriminating between MVs and EXOs, together with additional evidence that cells "package" proteins in EVs systematically and according to their phenotypic state.

  9. Urinary extracellular vesicles: biomarkers and beyond

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    M. Salih (Mahdi)


    markdownabstractExtracellular vesicles have been isolated in various body fluids including urine. The cargo of urinary extracellular vesicles (uEVs) is composed of proteins and nucleic acids reflecting the physiological and possibly the pathophysiological state of cells lining the nephron. Because

  10. Structuring high-protein foods

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Purwanti, N.


    Increased protein consumption gives rise to various health benefits. High-protein intake can lead to muscle development, body weight control and suppression of sarcopenia progression. However, increasing the protein content in food products leads to textural changes over time. These changes result

  11. Membrane vesicle protein PagC as a novel biomarker for detecting pathogenic Salmonella in the viable but not culturable state. (United States)

    Xu, Jun; Suita, Kazuasa; Okuno, Katsuya; Takaya, Akiko; Yamamoto, Tomoko; Isogai, Emiko


    The viable but non-culturable (VBNC) state is a remarkable survival mechanism in which cells exist in a physiologically inactive state. Bacteria in the VBNC state do not form colonies, and thus, are difficult to detect using colony-based methods. As a result, VBNC bacteria are potentially virulent and can cause widespread contamination during food production. In the present study, we reported a novel biomarker, the membrane vesicle protein PagC, for the detection of VBNC Salmonella. Salmonella cells were chemically induced into the VBNC state by H2O2 treatment. The bacterial cells retained their shapes but were observed to release numerous membrane vesicles, which were accompanied by a transient PagC overexpression. Immunoblotting was performed to detect PagC in pathogenic strains, including Salmonella Enteritidis and S. Typhimurium, which are harmful and known to cause food-borne gastroenteritis in humans and other animals. Therefore, our findings demonstrated the potential use of PagC as a biomarker for the detection of VBNC Salmonella in food production.

  12. Lipid Vesicles for the Skin Delivery of Diclofenac: Cerosomes vs. Other Lipid Suspensions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anahita Fathi-Azarbayjani


    Full Text Available Purpose: Lipid suspensions as drug carriers, including conventional liposomes, ethosomes, transferosomes, proniosomes, niosomes, PEG-PPG-PEG niosomes and stratum corneum liposomes (cerosomes, were formulated and compared. Methods: Lipid vesicles were formulated and assessed with regards to enhancement of skin permeation of diclofenac and stability profiles of the formulations. Formulation-induced changes of the biophysical structure of excised human skin were monitored using the Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy. Results: The stability profiles of these suspensions over 12 weeks did not show any significant drug leakage from the vesicles of interest (p > 0.05. FTIR observations indicated that the vesicles increased stratum corneum (SC lipid fluidization and altered protein conformation. Skin permeability experiments showed that the free unencapsulated drug in the cerosomal formulations caused significant increase in drug permeation across the skin (p < 0.01. Low skin permeability of drug from the other lipid suspensions could be due to the entrapment of diclofenac within these vesicles which decreased the solubility of the hydrophilic drug in the skin lipids and the partition coefficient of the drug from these vesicles into the SC. Conclusion: Optimal drug entrapment in vesicles or alteration of the skin structure may not necessarily enhance the permeation of hydrophilic drugs across the human skin. These lipid vesicles may be further developed into carriers of both hydrophilic and hydrophobic drugs for topical and transdermal delivery, respectively.

  13. The interface of protein structure, protein biophysics, and molecular evolution (United States)

    Liberles, David A; Teichmann, Sarah A; Bahar, Ivet; Bastolla, Ugo; Bloom, Jesse; Bornberg-Bauer, Erich; Colwell, Lucy J; de Koning, A P Jason; Dokholyan, Nikolay V; Echave, Julian; Elofsson, Arne; Gerloff, Dietlind L; Goldstein, Richard A; Grahnen, Johan A; Holder, Mark T; Lakner, Clemens; Lartillot, Nicholas; Lovell, Simon C; Naylor, Gavin; Perica, Tina; Pollock, David D; Pupko, Tal; Regan, Lynne; Roger, Andrew; Rubinstein, Nimrod; Shakhnovich, Eugene; Sjölander, Kimmen; Sunyaev, Shamil; Teufel, Ashley I; Thorne, Jeffrey L; Thornton, Joseph W; Weinreich, Daniel M; Whelan, Simon


    Abstract The interface of protein structural biology, protein biophysics, molecular evolution, and molecular population genetics forms the foundations for a mechanistic understanding of many aspects of protein biochemistry. Current efforts in interdisciplinary protein modeling are in their infancy and the state-of-the art of such models is described. Beyond the relationship between amino acid substitution and static protein structure, protein function, and corresponding organismal fitness, other considerations are also discussed. More complex mutational processes such as insertion and deletion and domain rearrangements and even circular permutations should be evaluated. The role of intrinsically disordered proteins is still controversial, but may be increasingly important to consider. Protein geometry and protein dynamics as a deviation from static considerations of protein structure are also important. Protein expression level is known to be a major determinant of evolutionary rate and several considerations including selection at the mRNA level and the role of interaction specificity are discussed. Lastly, the relationship between modeling and needed high-throughput experimental data as well as experimental examination of protein evolution using ancestral sequence resurrection and in vitro biochemistry are presented, towards an aim of ultimately generating better models for biological inference and prediction. PMID:22528593

  14. Overall energy conversion efficiency of a photosynthetic vesicle. (United States)

    Sener, Melih; Strumpfer, Johan; Singharoy, Abhishek; Hunter, C Neil; Schulten, Klaus


    The chromatophore of purple bacteria is an intracellular spherical vesicle that exists in numerous copies in the cell and that efficiently converts sunlight into ATP synthesis, operating typically under low light conditions. Building on an atomic-level structural model of a low-light-adapted chromatophore vesicle from Rhodobacter sphaeroides, we investigate the cooperation between more than a hundred protein complexes in the vesicle. The steady-state ATP production rate as a function of incident light intensity is determined after identifying quinol turnover at the cytochrome bc1 complex (cytb⁢c1) as rate limiting and assuming that the quinone/quinol pool of about 900 molecules acts in a quasi-stationary state. For an illumination condition equivalent to 1% of full sunlight, the vesicle exhibits an ATP production rate of 82 ATP molecules/s. The energy conversion efficiency of ATP synthesis at illuminations corresponding to 1%-5% of full sunlight is calculated to be 0.12-0.04, respectively. The vesicle stoichiometry, evolutionarily adapted to the low light intensities in the habitat of purple bacteria, is suboptimal for steady-state ATP turnover for the benefit of protection against over-illumination.

  15. Determining and visualizing flexibility in protein structures. (United States)

    Scott, Walter R P; Straus, Suzana K


    How to compare the structures of an ensemble of protein conformations is a fundamental problem in structural biology. As has been previously observed, the widely used RMSD measure due to Kabsch, in which a rigid-body superposition minimizing the least-squares positional deviations is performed, has its drawbacks when comparing and visualizing a set of flexible protein structures. Here, we develop a method, fleximatch, of protein structure comparison that takes flexibility into account. Based on a distance matrix measure of flexibility, a weighted superposition of distance matrices rather than of atomic coordinates is performed. Subsequently, this allows a consistent determination of (a) a superposition of structures for visualization, (b) a partitioning of the protein structure into rigid molecular components (core atoms), and (c) an atomic mobility measure. The method is suitable for highlighting both particularly flexible and rigid parts of a protein from structures derived from NMR, X-ray diffraction or molecular simulation. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  16. PSAIA – Protein Structure and Interaction Analyzer

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vlahoviček Kristian


    Full Text Available Abstract 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.

  17. Understanding Protein-Protein Interactions Using Local Structural Features

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Planas-Iglesias, Joan; Bonet, Jaume; García-García, Javier


    Protein-protein interactions (PPIs) play a relevant role among the different functions of a cell. Identifying the PPI network of a given organism (interactome) is useful to shed light on the key molecular mechanisms within a biological system. In this work, we show the role of structural features...... (loops and domains) to comprehend the molecular mechanisms of PPIs. A paradox in protein-protein binding is to explain how the unbound proteins of a binary complex recognize each other among a large population within a cell and how they find their best docking interface in a short timescale. We use...... interacting and non-interacting protein pairs to classify the structural features that sustain the binding (or non-binding) behavior. Our study indicates that not only the interacting region but also the rest of the protein surface are important for the interaction fate. The interpretation...

  18. Structural genomics on membrane proteins: mini review. (United States)

    Lundstrom, K


    Structural genomics, structure-based analysis of gene products, has so far mainly concentrated on soluble proteins because of their less demanding requirements for overexpression, purification and crystallisation compared to membrane proteins. This so-called "low-hanging fruit" approach has generated more than 25,000 structures deposited in databases. In contrast, the substantially more complex membrane proteins, in relation to all steps from overexpression to high-resolution structure determination, represent less than 1% of available crystal structures. This is in sharp contrast to the importance of this type of proteins, particularly G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs), as today 60-70% of the current drug targets are based on membrane proteins. The key to improved success with membrane protein structural elucidation is technology development. The most efficient approach constitutes parallel studies on a large number of targets and evaluation of various systems for expression. Next, high throughput format solubilisation and refolding screening methods for a wide range of detergents and additives in numerous concentrations should be established. Today, several networks dealing with structural genomics approaches of membrane proteins have been initiated, among them the Membrane Protein Network (MePNet) programme that deals with the pharmaceutically important mammalian GPCRs. In MePNet, three overexpression systems have been employed for the evaluation of 101 GPCRs, which has generated large quantities of numerous recombinant GPCRs, compatible for structural biology applications.

  19. Structural classification of proteins and structural genomics: new insights into protein folding and evolution. (United States)

    Andreeva, Antonina; Murzin, Alexey G


    During the past decade, the Protein Structure Initiative (PSI) centres have become major contributors of new families, superfamilies and folds to the Structural Classification of Proteins (SCOP) database. The PSI results have increased the diversity of protein structural space and accelerated our understanding of it. This review article surveys a selection of protein structures determined by the Joint Center for Structural Genomics (JCSG). It presents previously undescribed β-sheet architectures such as the double barrel and spiral β-roll and discusses new examples of unusual topologies and peculiar structural features observed in proteins characterized by the JCSG and other Structural Genomics centres.

  20. Pushing synaptic vesicles over the RIM. (United States)

    Kaeser, Pascal S


    In a presynaptic nerve terminal, neurotransmitter release is largely restricted to specialized sites called active zones. Active zones consist of a complex protein network, and they organize fusion of synaptic vesicles with the presynaptic plasma membrane in response to action potentials. Rab3-interacting molecules (RIMs) are central components of active zones. In a recent series of experiments, we have systematically dissected the molecular mechanisms by which RIMs operate in synaptic vesicle release. We found that RIMs execute two critical functions of active zones by virtue of independent protein domains. They tether presyanptic Ca(2+) channels to the active zone, and they activate priming of synaptic vesicles by monomerizing homodimeric, constitutively inactive Munc13. These data indicate that RIMs orchestrate synaptic vesicle release into a coherent process. In conjunction with previous studies, they suggest that RIMs form a molecular platform on which plasticity of synaptic vesicle release can operate.

  1. Structural characterization of proteins using residue environments. (United States)

    Mooney, Sean D; Liang, Mike Hsin-Ping; DeConde, Rob; Altman, Russ B


    A primary challenge for structural genomics is the automated functional characterization of protein structures. We have developed a sequence-independent method called S-BLEST (Structure-Based Local Environment Search Tool) for the annotation of previously uncharacterized protein structures. S-BLEST encodes the local environment of an amino acid as a vector of structural property values. It has been applied to all amino acids in a nonredundant database of protein structures to generate a searchable structural resource. Given a query amino acid from an experimentally determined or modeled structure, S-BLEST quickly identifies similar amino acid environments using a K-nearest neighbor search. In addition, the method gives an estimation of the statistical significance of each result. We validated S-BLEST on X-ray crystal structures from the ASTRAL 40 nonredundant dataset. We then applied it to 86 crystallographically determined proteins in the protein data bank (PDB) with unknown function and with no significant sequence neighbors in the PDB. S-BLEST was able to associate 20 proteins with at least one local structural neighbor and identify the amino acid environments that are most similar between those neighbors. Proteins 2005. 2005 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

  2. Extracellular vesicles and a novel form of communication in the brain

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Manuela eBasso


    Full Text Available In numerous neurodegenerative diseases, the interplay between neurons and glia modulates the outcome and progression of pathology. One particularly intriguing mode of interaction between neurons, astrocytes, microglia, and oligodendrocytes is characterized by the release of extracellular vesicles that transport proteins, lipids, and nucleotides from one cell to another. Notably, several proteins that cause disease, including the prion protein and mutant SOD1, have been detected in glia-derived extracellular vesicles and observed to fuse with neurons and trigger pathology in vitro. Here we review the structural and functional characterization of such extracellular vesicles in neuron-glia interactions. Furthermore, we discuss possible mechanisms of extracellular vesicle biogenesis and release from activated glia and microglia, and their effects on neurons. Given that exosomes, the smallest type of extracellular vesicles, have been reported to recognize specific cellular populations and act as carriers of very specialized cargo, a thorough analysis of these vesicles may aid in their engineering in vitro and targeted delivery in vivo, opening opportunities for therapeutics.

  3. Exocytosis and Endocytosis of Small Vesicles across the Plasma Membrane in Saccharomyces cerevisiae (United States)

    Stein, Kathryn; Chiang, Hui-Ling


    When Saccharomyces cerevisiae is starved of glucose, the gluconeogenic enzymes fructose-1,6-bisphosphatase (FBPase), phosphoenolpyruvate carboxykinase, isocitrate lyase, and malate dehydrogenase, as well as the non-gluconeogenic enzymes glyceraldehyde-3-phosphate dehydrogenase and cyclophilin A, are secreted into the periplasm. In the extracellular fraction, these secreted proteins are associated with small vesicles that account for more than 90% of the total number of extracellular structures observed. When glucose is added to glucose-starved cells, FBPase is internalized and associated with clusters of small vesicles in the cytoplasm. Specifically, the internalization of FBPase results in the decline of FBPase and vesicles in the extracellular fraction and their appearance in the cytoplasm. The clearance of extracellular vesicles and vesicle-associated proteins from the extracellular fraction is dependent on the endocytosis gene END3. This internalization is regulated when cells are transferred from low to high glucose. It is rapidly occurring and is a high capacity process, as clusters of vesicles occupy 10%–20% of the total volume in the cytoplasm in glucose re-fed cells. FBPase internalization also requires the VPS34 gene encoding PI3K. Following internalization, FBPase is delivered to the vacuole for degradation, whereas proteins that are not degraded may be recycled. PMID:25192542

  4. Near-native Protein Structure Simulation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stefka Fidanova


    Full Text Available The protein folding problem is a fundamental problem in computational molecular biology and biochemical physics. The high resolution 3D structure of a protein is the key to the understanding and manipulating of its biochemical and cellular functions. All information necessary to fold a protein to its native structure is contained in its amino-acid sequence. Proteins structure could be calculated from knowledge of its sequence and our understanding of the sequence-structure relationships. Various optimization methods have been applied to formulation of the folding problem. There are two main approaches. The one is based on properties of homologous proteins. Other is based on reduced models of proteins structure like hydrophobic-polar (HP protein model. After that, the folding problem is defined like optimization problem. It is a hard optimization problem and most of the authors apply Monte Carlo or metaheuristic methods to solve it. In this paper other approach will be used. By HP model is explained the structures of proteins conformation observed by biologists and is studied the correspondence between the primary and tertiary structures of the proteins.

  5. A new protein structure representation for efficient protein function prediction. (United States)

    Maghawry, Huda A; Mostafa, Mostafa G M; Gharib, Tarek F


    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.

  6. Alpha complexes in protein structure prediction

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Winter, Pawel; Fonseca, Rasmus


    Reducing the computational effort and increasing the accuracy of potential energy functions is of utmost importance in modeling biological systems, for instance in protein structure prediction, docking or design. Evaluating interactions between nonbonded atoms is the bottleneck of such computations......-complexes and kinetic a-complexes in protein related problems (e.g., protein structure prediction and protein-ligand docking) deserves furhter investigation.)......-complexes from scratch for every configuration encountered during the search for the native structure would make this approach hopelessly slow. However, it is argued that kinetic a-complexes can be used to reduce the computational effort of determining the potential energy when "moving" from one configuration...

  7. Refinement of protein structures in explicit solvent

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Linge, J.P.; Williams, M.A.; Spronk, C.A.E.M.; Bonvin, A.M.J.J.|info:eu-repo/dai/nl/113691238; Nilges, M.


    We present a CPU efficient protocol for refinement of protein structures in a thin layer of explicit solvent and energy parameters with completely revised dihedral angle terms. Our approach is suitable for protein structures determined by theoretical (e.g., homology modeling or threading) or

  8. Validation-driven protein-structure improvement

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Touw, W.G.


    High-quality protein structure models are essential for many Life Science applications, such as protein engineering, molecular dynamics, drug design, and homology modelling. The WHAT_CHECK model validation project and the PDB_REDO model optimisation project have shown that many structure models in

  9. Evaluating protein structures determined by structural genomics consortia. (United States)

    Bhattacharya, Aneerban; Tejero, Roberto; Montelione, Gaetano T


    Structural genomics projects are providing large quantities of new 3D structural data for proteins. To monitor the quality of these data, we have developed the protein structure validation software suite (PSVS), for assessment of protein structures generated by NMR or X-ray crystallographic methods. PSVS is broadly applicable for structure quality assessment in structural biology projects. The software integrates under a single interface analyses from several widely-used structure quality evaluation tools, including PROCHECK (Laskowski et al., J Appl Crystallog 1993;26:283-291), MolProbity (Lovell et al., Proteins 2003;50:437-450), Verify3D (Luthy et al., Nature 1992;356:83-85), ProsaII (Sippl, Proteins 1993;17: 355-362), the PDB validation software, and various structure-validation tools developed in our own laboratory. PSVS provides standard constraint analyses, statistics on goodness-of-fit between structures and experimental data, and knowledge-based structure quality scores in standardized format suitable for database integration. The analysis provides both global and site-specific measures of protein structure quality. Global quality measures are reported as Z scores, based on calibration with a set of high-resolution X-ray crystal structures. PSVS is particularly useful in assessing protein structures determined by NMR methods, but is also valuable for assessing X-ray crystal structures or homology models. Using these tools, we assessed protein structures generated by the Northeast Structural Genomics Consortium and other international structural genomics projects, over a 5-year period. Protein structures produced from structural genomics projects exhibit quality score distributions similar to those of structures produced in traditional structural biology projects during the same time period. However, while some NMR structures have structure quality scores similar to those seen in higher-resolution X-ray crystal structures, the majority of NMR structures

  10. Protein Structure Determination Using Chemical Shifts

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Christensen, Anders Steen

    In this thesis, a protein structure determination using chemical shifts is presented. The method is implemented in the open source PHAISTOS protein simulation framework. The method combines sampling from a generative model with a coarse-grained force field and an energy function that includes...... chemical shifts. The method is benchmarked on folding simulations of five small proteins. In four cases the resulting structures are in excellent agreement with experimental data, the fifth case fail likely due to inaccuracies in the energy function. For the Chymotrypsin Inhibitor protein, a structure...... is determined using only chemical shifts recorded and assigned through automated processes. The CARMSD to the experimental X-ray for this structure is 1.1. Å. Additionally, the method is combined with very sparse NOE-restraints and evolutionary distance restraints and tested on several protein structures >100...

  11. Extracellular Vesicles in Lung Disease. (United States)

    Kubo, Hiroshi


    Accumulating evidence suggests that extracellular vesicles (EVs) play a role in the pathogenesis of lung diseases. These vesicles include exosomes, ectosomes (ie, microparticles, extracellular vesicles, microvesicles, and shedding vesicles), and apoptotic bodies. Exosomes are generated by inward budding of the membrane (endocytosis), subsequent forming of multivesicular bodies, and release by exocytosis. Ectosomes are formed by outward blebbing from the plasma membrane and are then released by proteolytic cleavage from the cell surface. Apoptotic bodies are generated on apoptotic cell shrinkage and death. Extracellular vesicles are released when the cells are activated or undergo apoptosis under inflammatory conditions. The number and types of released EVs are different according to the pathophysiological status of the disease. Therefore, EVs can be novel biomarkers for various lung diseases. EVs contain several molecules, including proteins, mRNA, microRNA, and DNA; they transfer these molecules to distant recipient cells. Circulating EVs modify the targeted cells and influence the microenvironment of the lungs. For this unique capability, EVs are expected to be a new drug delivery system and a novel therapeutic target. Copyright © 2017 American College of Chest Physicians. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  12. Website on Protein Interaction and Protein Structure Related Work (United States)

    Samanta, Manoj; Liang, Shoudan; Biegel, Bryan (Technical Monitor)


    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. Polymeric vesicles: from drug carriers to nanoreactors and artificial organelles. (United States)

    Tanner, Pascal; Baumann, Patric; Enea, Ramona; Onaca, Ozana; Palivan, Cornelia; Meier, Wolfgang


    One strategy in modern medicine is the development of new platforms that combine multifunctional compounds with stable, safe carriers in patient-oriented therapeutic strategies. The simultaneous detection and treatment of pathological events through interactions manipulated at the molecular level offer treatment strategies that can decrease side effects resulting from conventional therapeutic approaches. Several types of nanocarriers have been proposed for biomedical purposes, including inorganic nanoparticles, lipid aggregates, including liposomes, and synthetic polymeric systems, such as vesicles, micelles, or nanotubes. Polymeric vesicles--structures similar to lipid vesicles but created using synthetic block copolymers--represent an excellent candidate for new nanocarriers for medical applications. These structures are more stable than liposomes but retain their low immunogenicity. Significant efforts have been made to improve the size, membrane flexibility, and permeability of polymeric vesicles and to enhance their target specificity. The optimization of these properties will allow researchers to design smart compartments that can co-encapsulate sensitive molecules, such as RNA, enzymes, and proteins, and their membranes allow insertion of membrane proteins rather than simply serving as passive carriers. In this Account, we illustrate the advances that are shifting these molecular systems from simple polymeric carriers to smart-complex protein-polymer assemblies, such as nanoreactors or synthetic organelles. Polymeric vesicles generated by the self-assembly of amphiphilic copolymers (polymersomes) offer the advantage of simultaneous encapsulation of hydrophilic compounds in their aqueous cavities and the insertion of fragile, hydrophobic compounds in their membranes. This strategy has permitted us and others to design and develop new systems such as nanoreactors and artificial organelles in which active compounds are simultaneously protected and allowed to

  14. Optimized null model for protein structure networks. (United States)

    Milenković, Tijana; Filippis, Ioannis; Lappe, Michael; Przulj, Natasa


    Much attention has recently been given to the statistical significance of topological features observed in biological networks. Here, we consider residue interaction graphs (RIGs) as network representations of protein structures with residues as nodes and inter-residue interactions as edges. Degree-preserving randomized models have been widely used for this purpose in biomolecular networks. However, such a single summary statistic of a network may not be detailed enough to capture the complex topological characteristics of protein structures and their network counterparts. Here, we investigate a variety of topological properties of RIGs to find a well fitting network null model for them. The RIGs are derived from a structurally diverse protein data set at various distance cut-offs and for different groups of interacting atoms. We compare the network structure of RIGs to several random graph models. We show that 3-dimensional geometric random graphs, that model spatial relationships between objects, provide the best fit to RIGs. We investigate the relationship between the strength of the fit and various protein structural features. We show that the fit depends on protein size, structural class, and thermostability, but not on quaternary structure. We apply our model to the identification of significantly over-represented structural building blocks, i.e., network motifs, in protein structure networks. As expected, choosing geometric graphs as a null model results in the most specific identification of motifs. Our geometric random graph model may facilitate further graph-based studies of protein conformation space and have important implications for protein structure comparison and prediction. The choice of a well-fitting null model is crucial for finding structural motifs that play an important role in protein folding, stability and function. To our knowledge, this is the first study that addresses the challenge of finding an optimized null model for RIGs, by

  15. Optimized null model for protein structure networks.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tijana Milenković

    Full Text Available Much attention has recently been given to the statistical significance of topological features observed in biological networks. Here, we consider residue interaction graphs (RIGs as network representations of protein structures with residues as nodes and inter-residue interactions as edges. Degree-preserving randomized models have been widely used for this purpose in biomolecular networks. However, such a single summary statistic of a network may not be detailed enough to capture the complex topological characteristics of protein structures and their network counterparts. Here, we investigate a variety of topological properties of RIGs to find a well fitting network null model for them. The RIGs are derived from a structurally diverse protein data set at various distance cut-offs and for different groups of interacting atoms. We compare the network structure of RIGs to several random graph models. We show that 3-dimensional geometric random graphs, that model spatial relationships between objects, provide the best fit to RIGs. We investigate the relationship between the strength of the fit and various protein structural features. We show that the fit depends on protein size, structural class, and thermostability, but not on quaternary structure. We apply our model to the identification of significantly over-represented structural building blocks, i.e., network motifs, in protein structure networks. As expected, choosing geometric graphs as a null model results in the most specific identification of motifs. Our geometric random graph model may facilitate further graph-based studies of protein conformation space and have important implications for protein structure comparison and prediction. The choice of a well-fitting null model is crucial for finding structural motifs that play an important role in protein folding, stability and function. To our knowledge, this is the first study that addresses the challenge of finding an optimized null model

  16. Extension of Helix 12 in Munc18-1 Induces Vesicle Priming

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Munch, Anders S; Kedar, Girish H; van Weering, Jan R T


    Munc18-1 is essential for vesicle fusion and participates in the docking of large dense-core vesicles to the plasma membrane. Recent structural data suggest that conformational changes in the 12th helix of the Munc18-1 domain 3a within the Munc18-1:syntaxin complex result in an additional...... interaction with synaptobrevin-2/VAMP2 (vesicle-associated membrane protein 2), leading to SNARE complex formation. To test this hypothesis in living cells, we examined secretion from Munc18-1-null mouse adrenal chromaffin cells expressing Munc18-1 mutants designed to either perturb the extension of helix 12...... findings support the notion that a conformational transition within the Munc18-1 domain 3a helix 12 leads to opening of a closed Munc18-1:syntaxin complex, followed by productive SNARE complex assembly and vesicle priming. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT: The essential postdocking role of Munc18-1 in vesicular...

  17. Reconstitution of cytochrome c oxidase in phospholipid vesicles containing polyvinylic polymers. (United States)

    Sarti, P; Antonini, G; Malatesta, F; Vallone, B; Villaschi, S; Brunori, M; Hider, R C; Hamed, K


    Cytochrome c oxidase was reconstituted in phospholipid vesicles in the presence of highly hydrophobic poly(vinyl alkanoate) polymers. Electron-microscopy observations demonstrated that polymer interaction with the lipid phase induces vesicles to adopt smaller diameters than those typical of standard proteoliposomes. Functional characterization of these polymer-proteoliposome structures indicates that the reconstitution of the enzyme proceeds efficiently without causing either scrambling of the protein orientation in the membrane or loss of respiratory control. A clear dependence of respiratory control ratio on vesicle size was also demonstrated, which is in agreement with a previous model proposed for control of activity of cytochrome c oxidase vesicles [Brunori, Sarti, Colosimo, Antonini, Malatesta, Jones & Wilson (1985) EMBO J. 4, 2365-2368]. Images Fig. 2. PMID:2539096

  18. A Perspective on Extracellular Vesicles Proteomics

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Livia Rosa-Fernandes


    Full Text Available Increasing attention has been given to secreted extracellular vesicles (EVs in the past decades, especially in the portrayal of their molecular cargo and role as messengers in both homeostasis and pathophysiological conditions. This review presents the state-of-the-art proteomic technologies to identify and quantify EVs proteins along with their PTMs, interacting partners and structural details. The rapid growth of mass spectrometry-based analytical strategies for protein sequencing, PTMs and structural characterization has improved the level of molecular details that can be achieved from limited amount of EVs isolated from different biological sources. Here we will provide a perspective view on the achievements and challenges on EVs proteome characterization using mass spectrometry. A detailed bioinformatics approach will help us to picture the molecular fingerprint of EVs and understand better their pathophysiological function.

  19. A Perspective on Extracellular Vesicles Proteomics. (United States)

    Rosa-Fernandes, Livia; Rocha, Victória Bombarda; Carregari, Victor Corasolla; Urbani, Andrea; Palmisano, Giuseppe


    Increasing attention has been given to secreted extracellular vesicles (EVs) in the past decades, especially in the portrayal of their molecular cargo and role as messengers in both homeostasis and pathophysiological conditions. This review presents the state-of-the-art proteomic technologies to identify and quantify EVs proteins along with their PTMs, interacting partners and structural details. The rapid growth of mass spectrometry-based analytical strategies for protein sequencing, PTMs and structural characterization has improved the level of molecular details that can be achieved from limited amount of EVs isolated from different biological sources. Here we will provide a perspective view on the achievements and challenges on EVs proteome characterization using mass spectrometry. A detailed bioinformatics approach will help us to picture the molecular fingerprint of EVs and understand better their pathophysiological function.

  20. Tooth enamel protein amelogenin binds to ameloblast cell membrane-mimicking vesicles via its N-terminus. (United States)

    Lokappa, Sowmya Bekshe; Chandrababu, Karthik Balakrishna; Moradian-Oldak, Janet


    We have recently reported that the extracellular enamel protein amelogenin has affinity to interact with phospholipids and proposed that such interactions may play key roles in enamel biomineralization as well as reported amelogenin signaling activities. Here, in order to identify the liposome-interacting domains of amelogenin we designed four different amelogenin mutants containing only a single tryptophan at positions 25, 45, 112 and 161. Circular dichroism studies of the mutants confirmed that they are structurally similar to the wild-type amelogenin. Utilizing the intrinsic fluorescence of single tryptophan residue and fluorescence resonance energy transfer [FRET], we analyzed the accessibility and strength of their binding with an ameloblast cell membrane-mimicking model membrane (ACML) and a negatively charged liposome used as a membrane model. We found that amelogenin has membrane-binding ability mainly via its N-terminal, close to residues W25 and W45. Significant blue shift was also observed in the fluorescence of a N-terminal peptide following addition of liposomes. We suggest that, among other mechanisms, enamel malformation in cases of Amelogenesis Imperfecta (AI) with mutations at the N-terminal may be the result of defective amelogenin-cell interactions. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  1. Protein Structure Determination Using Protein Threading and Sparse NMR Data

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Crawford, O.H.; Einstein, J.R.; Xu, D.; Xu, Y.


    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.

  2. Lack of Outer Membrane Protein A Enhances the Release of Outer Membrane Vesicles and Survival of Vibrio cholerae and Suppresses Viability of Acanthamoeba castellanii

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Soni Priya Valeru


    Full Text Available Vibrio cholerae, the causative agent of the diarrhoeal disease cholera, survives in aquatic environments. The bacterium has developed a survival strategy to grow and survive inside Acanthamoeba castellanii. It has been shown that V. cholerae expresses outer membrane proteins as virulence factors playing a role in the adherence to interacted host cells. This study examined the role of outer membrane protein A (OmpA and outer membrane vesicles (OMVs in survival of V. cholerae alone and during its interaction with A. castellanii. The results showed that an OmpA mutant of V. cholerae survived longer than wild-type V. cholerae when cultivated alone. Cocultivation with A. castellanii enhanced the survival of both bacterial strains and OmpA protein exhibited no effect on attachment, engulfment, and survival inside the amoebae. However, cocultivation of the OmpA mutant of V. cholerae decreased the viability of A. castellanii and this bacterial strain released more OMVs than wild-type V. cholerae. Surprisingly, treatment of amoeba cells with OMVs isolated from the OmpA mutant significantly decreased viable counts of the amoeba cells. In conclusion, the results might highlight a regulating rule for OmpA in survival of V. cholerae and OMVs as a potent virulence factor for this bacterium towards eukaryotes in the environment.

  3. Unconventional molecular regulation of synaptic vesicle replenishment in cochlear inner hair cells. (United States)

    Vogl, Christian; Cooper, Benjamin H; Neef, Jakob; Wojcik, Sonja M; Reim, Kerstin; Reisinger, Ellen; Brose, Nils; Rhee, Jeong-Seop; Moser, Tobias; Wichmann, Carolin


    Ribbon synapses of cochlear inner hair cells (IHCs) employ efficient vesicle replenishment to indefatigably encode sound. In neurons, neuroendocrine and immune cells, vesicle replenishment depends on proteins of the mammalian uncoordinated 13 (Munc13, also known as Unc13) and Ca(2+)-dependent activator proteins for secretion (CAPS) families, which prime vesicles for exocytosis. Here, we tested whether Munc13 and CAPS proteins also regulate exocytosis in mouse IHCs by combining immunohistochemistry with auditory systems physiology and IHC patch-clamp recordings of exocytosis in mice lacking Munc13 and CAPS isoforms. Surprisingly, we did not detect Munc13 or CAPS proteins at IHC presynaptic active zones and found normal IHC exocytosis as well as auditory brainstem responses (ABRs) in Munc13 and CAPS deletion mutants. Instead, we show that otoferlin, a C2-domain protein that is crucial for vesicular fusion and replenishment in IHCs, clusters at the plasma membrane of the presynaptic active zone. Electron tomography of otoferlin-deficient IHC synapses revealed a reduction of short tethers holding vesicles at the active zone, which might be a structural correlate of impaired vesicle priming in otoferlin-deficient IHCs. We conclude that IHCs use an unconventional priming machinery that involves otoferlin. © 2015. Published by The Company of Biologists Ltd.

  4. Protein NMR structures refined without NOE data. (United States)

    Ryu, Hyojung; Kim, Tae-Rae; Ahn, SeonJoo; Ji, Sunyoung; Lee, Jinhyuk


    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.

  5. Trafficking of astrocytic vesicles in hippocampal slices

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Potokar, Maja; Kreft, Marko [Laboratory of Neuroendocrinology-Molecular Cell Physiology, Institute of Pathophysiology, Faculty of Medicine, University of Ljubljana, Zaloska 4, 1000 Ljubljana (Slovenia); Celica Biomedical Center, Technology Park 24, 1000 Ljubljana (Slovenia); Lee, So-Young; Takano, Hajime; Haydon, Philip G. [Department of Neuroscience, Room 215, Stemmler Hall, University of Pennsylvania, School of Medicine, Philadelphia, PA 19104 (United States); Zorec, Robert, E-mail: [Laboratory of Neuroendocrinology-Molecular Cell Physiology, Institute of Pathophysiology, Faculty of Medicine, University of Ljubljana, Zaloska 4, 1000 Ljubljana (Slovenia); Celica Biomedical Center, Technology Park 24, 1000 Ljubljana (Slovenia)


    The increasingly appreciated role of astrocytes in neurophysiology dictates a thorough understanding of the mechanisms underlying the communication between astrocytes and neurons. In particular, the uptake and release of signaling substances into/from astrocytes is considered as crucial. The release of different gliotransmitters involves regulated exocytosis, consisting of the fusion between the vesicle and the plasma membranes. After fusion with the plasma membrane vesicles may be retrieved into the cytoplasm and may continue to recycle. To study the mobility implicated in the retrieval of secretory vesicles, these structures have been previously efficiently and specifically labeled in cultured astrocytes, by exposing live cells to primary and secondary antibodies. Since the vesicle labeling and the vesicle mobility properties may be an artifact of cell culture conditions, we here asked whether the retrieving exocytotic vesicles can be labeled in brain tissue slices and whether their mobility differs to that observed in cell cultures. We labeled astrocytic vesicles and recorded their mobility with two-photon microscopy in hippocampal slices from transgenic mice with fluorescently tagged astrocytes (GFP mice) and in wild-type mice with astrocytes labeled by Fluo4 fluorescence indicator. Glutamatergic vesicles and peptidergic granules were labeled by the anti-vesicular glutamate transporter 1 (vGlut1) and anti-atrial natriuretic peptide (ANP) antibodies, respectively. We report that the vesicle mobility parameters (velocity, maximal displacement and track length) recorded in astrocytes from tissue slices are similar to those reported previously in cultured astrocytes.

  6. Membrane protein structure determination in membrana. (United States)

    Ding, Yi; Yao, Yong; Marassi, Francesca M


    The two principal components of biological membranes, the lipid bilayer and the proteins integrated within it, have coevolved for specific functions that mediate the interactions of cells with their environment. Molecular structures can provide very significant insights about protein function. In the case of membrane proteins, the physical and chemical properties of lipids and proteins are highly interdependent; therefore structure determination should include the membrane environment. Considering the membrane alongside the protein eliminates the possibility that crystal contacts or detergent molecules could distort protein structure, dynamics, and function and enables ligand binding studies to be performed in a natural setting. Solid-state NMR spectroscopy is compatible with three-dimensional structure determination of membrane proteins in phospholipid bilayer membranes under physiological conditions and has played an important role in elucidating the physical and chemical properties of biological membranes, providing key information about the structure and dynamics of the phospholipid components. Recently, developments in the recombinant expression of membrane proteins, sample preparation, pulse sequences for high-resolution spectroscopy, radio frequency probes, high-field magnets, and computational methods have enabled a number of membrane protein structures to be determined in lipid bilayer membranes. In this Account, we illustrate solid-state NMR methods with examples from two bacterial outer membrane proteins (OmpX and Ail) that form integral membrane β-barrels. The ability to measure orientation-dependent frequencies in the solid-state NMR spectra of membrane-embedded proteins provides the foundation for a powerful approach to structure determination based primarily on orientation restraints. Orientation restraints are particularly useful for NMR structural studies of membrane proteins because they provide information about both three-dimensional structure

  7. Lessons from making the Structural Classification of Proteins (SCOP) and their implications for protein structure modelling. (United States)

    Andreeva, Antonina


    The Structural Classification of Proteins (SCOP) database has facilitated the development of many tools and algorithms and it has been successfully used in protein structure prediction and large-scale genome annotations. During the development of SCOP, numerous exceptions were found to topological rules, along with complex evolutionary scenarios and peculiarities in proteins including the ability to fold into alternative structures. This article reviews cases of structural variations observed for individual proteins and among groups of homologues, knowledge of which is essential for protein structure modelling. © 2016 The Author(s). published by Portland Press Limited on behalf of the Biochemical Society.

  8. Secondary structure and rigidity in model proteins. (United States)

    Perticaroli, Stefania; Nickels, Jonathan D; Ehlers, Georg; O'Neill, Hugh; Zhang, Qui; Sokolov, Alexei P


    There is tremendous interest in understanding the role that secondary structure plays in the rigidity and dynamics of proteins. In this work we analyze nanomechanical properties of proteins chosen to represent different secondary structures: α-helices (myoglobin and bovine serum albumin), β-barrels (green fluorescent protein), and α + β + loop structures (lysozyme). Our experimental results show that in these model proteins, the β motif is a stiffer structural unit than the α-helix in both dry and hydrated states. This difference appears not only in the rigidity of the protein, but also in the amplitude of fast picosecond fluctuations. Moreover, we show that for these examples the secondary structure correlates with the temperature- and hydration-induced changes in the protein dynamics and rigidity. Analysis also suggests a connection between the length of the secondary structure (α-helices) and the low-frequency vibrational mode, the so-called boson peak. The presented results suggest an intimate connection of dynamics and rigidity with the protein secondary structure.

  9. Melanoma affects the composition of blood cell-derived extracellular vesicles


    Nina Koliha; Ute Heider; Tobias Ozimkowski; Martin Wiemann; Andreas Bosio; Stefan Wild


    Extracellular vesicles are specifically loaded with nucleic acids, lipids, and proteins from their parental cell. Therefore, the constitution of extracellular vesicles reflects the type and status of the originating cell and extracellular vesicles in melanoma patient’s plasma could be indicative for the tumor. Likewise, extracellular vesicles might influence tumor progression by regulating immune responses. We performed a broad protein characterization of extracellular vesicles from plasma of...

  10. Predicting Protein Secondary Structure with Markov Models

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Fischer, Paul; Larsen, Simon; Thomsen, Claus


    we are considering here, is to predict the secondary structure from the primary one. To this end we train a Markov model on training data and then use it to classify parts of unknown protein sequences as sheets, helices or coils. We show how to exploit the directional information contained......The primary structure of a protein is the sequence of its amino acids. The secondary structure describes structural properties of the molecule such as which parts of it form sheets, helices or coils. Spacial and other properties are described by the higher order structures. The classification task...

  11. Supramolecular Langmuir monolayers and multilayered vesicles of self-assembling DNA–lipid surface structures and their further implications in polyelectrolyte-based cell transfections

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Demirsoy, Fatma Funda Kaya [Ankara University, The Central Laboratory of The Institute of Biotechnology (Turkey); Eruygur, Nuraniye [Gazi University, Department of Pharmacognosy, Faculty of Pharmacy (Turkey); Süleymanoğlu, Erhan, E-mail: [Gazi University, Department of Pharmaceutical Chemistry, Faculty of Pharmacy (Turkey)


    The basic interfacial characteristics of DNA–lipid recognitions have been studied. The complex structures of individual unbound DNA molecules and their binary and ternary complexes with zwitterionic lipids and divalent cations were followed by employing lipid monolayers at the air–liquid interfaces, as well as by performing various microscopic, spectroscopic, and thermodynamic measurements with multilayered vesicles. The pressure-area isotherms depicted that Mg{sup 2+}-ions increase the surface pressure of lipid films and thus give rise to electrostatic and hydrophobic lipid–DNA interactions in terms of DNA adsorption, adhesion, and compaction. These features were further approached by using multilamellar vesicles with a mean diameter of 850 nm, where a metal ion-directed nucleic acid compaction and condensation effects were shown. The data obtained show the effectiveness of Langmuir monolayers and lipid multilayers in studying nucleic acid–lipid recognitions. The data provide with further details and support previous reports on mainly structural features of these recognitions. Biomolecular surface recognition events were presented in direct link with spectral and thermodynamic features of lipid vesicle–polynucleotide complex formations. The results serve to build a theoretical model considering the use of neutral lipids in lipoplex designs as a polyelectrolyte alternatives to the currently employed cytotoxic cationic liposomes. The supramolecular structures formed and their possible roles in interfacial electrostatic and hydrophobic mechanisms of endosomal escape in relevant cell transfection assays are particularly emphasized.

  12. Structural symmetry and protein function. (United States)

    Goodsell, D S; Olson, A J


    The majority of soluble and membrane-bound proteins in modern cells are symmetrical oligomeric complexes with two or more subunits. The evolutionary selection of symmetrical oligomeric complexes is driven by functional, genetic, and physicochemical needs. Large proteins are selected for specific morphological functions, such as formation of rings, containers, and filaments, and for cooperative functions, such as allosteric regulation and multivalent binding. Large proteins are also more stable against denaturation and have a reduced surface area exposed to solvent when compared with many individual, smaller proteins. Large proteins are constructed as oligomers for reasons of error control in synthesis, coding efficiency, and regulation of assembly. Symmetrical oligomers are favored because of stability and finite control of assembly. Several functions limit symmetry, such as interaction with DNA or membranes, and directional motion. Symmetry is broken or modified in many forms: quasisymmetry, in which identical subunits adopt similar but different conformations; pleomorphism, in which identical subunits form different complexes; pseudosymmetry, in which different molecules form approximately symmetrical complexes; and symmetry mismatch, in which oligomers of different symmetries interact along their respective symmetry axes. Asymmetry is also observed at several levels. Nearly all complexes show local asymmetry at the level of side chain conformation. Several complexes have reciprocating mechanisms in which the complex is asymmetric, but, over time, all subunits cycle through the same set of conformations. Global asymmetry is only rarely observed. Evolution of oligomeric complexes may favor the formation of dimers over complexes with higher cyclic symmetry, through a mechanism of prepositioned pairs of interacting residues. However, examples have been found for all of the crystallographic point groups, demonstrating that functional need can drive the evolution of

  13. Efficient protein structure search using indexing methods. (United States)

    Kim, Sungchul; Sael, Lee; Yu, Hwanjo


    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.

  14. Alternative methods for characterization of extracellular vesicles

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fatemeh eMomen-Heravi


    Full Text Available Extracellular vesicles are nano-sized vesicles released by all cells in vitro as well as in vivo. Their role has been implicated mainly in cell-cell communication, but also in disease biomarkers and more recently in gene delivery. They represent a snapshot of the cell status at the moment of release and carry bioreactive macromolecules such as nucleic acids, proteins and lipids. A major limitation in this emerging new field is the availability/awareness of techniques to isolate and properly characterize Extracellular vesicles. The lack of gold standards makes comparing different studies very difficult and may potentially hinder some Extracellular vesicles -specific evidence. Characterization of Extracellular vesicles has also recently seen many advances with the use of Nanoparticle Tracking Analysis (NTA, flow cytometry, cryo-EM instruments and proteomic technologies. In this review, we discuss the latest developments in translational technologies involving characterization methods including the facts in their support and the challenges they face.

  15. Extracellular vesicles: new players in cardiovascular diseases. (United States)

    Gaceb, Abderahim; Martinez, Maria Carmen; Andriantsitohaina, Ramaroson


    Extracellular vesicles, particles released by all cell types, represent a new way to convey information between cells such as proteins, second messengers, and genetic information to modify the phenotype and function of the target cells. Recent data suggest that extracellular vesicles play a crucial role in both physiology and pathology, including coagulation, angiogenesis, cell survival, modulation of the immune response, and inflammation. Thus extracellular vesicles participate in the processes of cardiovascular diseases from atherosclerosis, myocardial infarction to heart failure. Consequently, extracellular vesicles can potentially be exploited for therapy, prognosis, and biomarkers for health and disease. This review focuses on the role of extracellular vesicles in the development of cardiovascular diseases, as well as the deleterious and beneficial effects that they may provide in vascular cells and myocardium. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  16. Interaction of Allium sativum leaf agglutinin with midgut brush border membrane vesicles proteins and its stability in Helicoverpa armigera. (United States)

    Upadhyay, Santosh Kumar; Mishra, Manisha; Singh, Harpal; Ranjan, Amol; Chandrashekar, Krishnappa; Verma, Praveen Chandra; Singh, Pradhyumna Kumar; Tuli, Rakesh


    Allium sativum leaf agglutinin (ASAL) binds to several proteins in the midgut of Helicoverpa armigera and causes toxicity. Most of these were glycosylated. Six ASAL-binding proteins were selected for identification. PMF and MS/MS data showed their similarity with midgut aminopeptidase APN2, polycalins and alkaline phosphatase of H. armigera, cadherin-N protein (partial AGAP009726-PA) of Acyrthosiphon pisum, cytochrome P450 (CYP315A1) of Manduca sexta and alkaline phosphatase of Heliothis virescens. Some of the ASAL-binding midgut proteins were similar to the larval receptors responsible for the binding of δ-endotoxin proteins of Bacillus thuringiensis. Galanthus nivalis agglutinin also interacted with most of the ASAL-binding proteins. The ASAL showed resistance to midgut proteases and was detected in the larval hemolymph and excreta. Immunohistochemical staining revealed the presence of ASAL in the body tissue also. Copyright © 2010 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  17. Neutron scattering determination of the binding of prothrombin to lipid vesicles

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Torbet, J.


    Low-angle neutron scattering is used to study the binding of human prothrombin to small single-bilayer vesicles consisting of phosphatidylcholine and phosphatidylserine (1/1 w/w). The radius of gyration of prothrombin indicates that it is an elongated molecule. The vesicles alone were not observed to coalesce, and their molecular weight, outer radius, and average surface area per lipid were respectively (1.6 +/- 0.32) x 10/sup 6/, 114 +/- 4 A, and 110 +/- 18 A/sup 2/. These values were independent of the presence of calcium and were not altered significantly by prothrombin, which binds reversibly to the vesicle outer surface with its long axis projecting approximately radially forming a 90-A thick protein shell. From the titration of the protein-vesicle interaction, the apparent dissociation constant of the binding of prothrombin to these vesicles is estimated to be 0.8 +/- 0.4 At saturation, 57 +/- 7 prothrombin molecules bind, giving 25 +/- 6 lipid residues and an area of 2900 +/- 400 A/sup 2/ per prothrombin molecule on the vesicle outer surface. This area is about twice that calculated from a prolate ellipsoid model for prothrombin. However, it is close to the maximum cross-sectional area of fragment 1, the lipid binding region of prothrombin, which is coin-shaped in the high-resolution X-ray structure. This similarity suggests that prothrombin binding could be sterically limited.

  18. Simultaneous determination of protein structure and dynamics

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lindorff-Larsen, Kresten; Best, Robert B.; DePristo, M. A.


    at the atomic level about the structural and dynamical features of proteins-with the ability of molecular dynamics simulations to explore a wide range of protein conformations. We illustrate the method for human ubiquitin in solution and find that there is considerable conformational heterogeneity throughout......We present a protocol for the experimental determination of ensembles of protein conformations that represent simultaneously the native structure and its associated dynamics. The procedure combines the strengths of nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy-for obtaining experimental information...... the protein structure. The interior atoms of the protein are tightly packed in each individual conformation that contributes to the ensemble but their overall behaviour can be described as having a significant degree of liquid-like character. The protocol is completely general and should lead to significant...

  19. Datamining protein structure databanks for crystallization patterns of proteins. (United States)

    Valafar, Homayoun; Prestegard, James H; Valafar, Faramarz


    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%.

  20. Dynamics of endocytic vesicle creation. (United States)

    Perrais, David; Merrifield, Christien J


    Clathrin-mediated endocytosis is the main path for receptor internalization in metazoans and is essential for controlling cell integrity and signaling. It is driven by a large array of protein and lipid interactions that have been deciphered mainly by biochemical and genetic means. To place these interactions into context, and ultimately build a fully operative model of endocytosis at the molecular level, it is necessary to know the kinetic details of the role of each protein in this process. In this review, we describe the recent efforts made, by using live cell imaging, to define clear steps in the formation of endocytic vesicles and to observe the recruitment of key proteins during membrane invagination, the scission of a newly formed vesicle, and its movement away from the plasma membrane.

  1. Protein structural similarity search by Ramachandran codes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chang Chih-Hung


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Protein structural data has increased exponentially, such that fast and accurate tools are necessary to access structure similarity search. To improve the search speed, several methods have been designed to reduce three-dimensional protein structures to one-dimensional text strings that are then analyzed by traditional sequence alignment methods; however, the accuracy is usually sacrificed and the speed is still unable to match sequence similarity search tools. Here, we aimed to improve the linear encoding methodology and develop efficient search tools that can rapidly retrieve structural homologs from large protein databases. Results We propose a new linear encoding method, SARST (Structural similarity search Aided by Ramachandran Sequential Transformation. SARST transforms protein structures into text strings through a Ramachandran map organized by nearest-neighbor clustering and uses a regenerative approach to produce substitution matrices. Then, classical sequence similarity search methods can be applied to the structural similarity search. Its accuracy is similar to Combinatorial Extension (CE and works over 243,000 times faster, searching 34,000 proteins in 0.34 sec with a 3.2-GHz CPU. SARST provides statistically meaningful expectation values to assess the retrieved information. It has been implemented into a web service and a stand-alone Java program that is able to run on many different platforms. Conclusion As a database search method, SARST can rapidly distinguish high from low similarities and efficiently retrieve homologous structures. It demonstrates that the easily accessible linear encoding methodology has the potential to serve as a foundation for efficient protein structural similarity search tools. These search tools are supposed applicable to automated and high-throughput functional annotations or predictions for the ever increasing number of published protein structures in this post-genomic era.

  2. Proteins with Novel Structure, Function and Dynamics (United States)

    Pohorille, Andrew


    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.

  3. Is protein structure prediction still an enigma?

    African Journals Online (AJOL)



    Dec 29, 2008 ... Proteins are large molecules indispensable for the existence and proper functioning of biological organisms. They perform a wide array of functions including catalysis, structure formation, transport, body defense, etc. Understanding the functions of proteins is a fundamental problem in the discovery of.

  4. PEGylated nanoparticles: protein corona and secondary structure (United States)

    Runa, Sabiha; Hill, Alexandra; Cochran, Victoria L.; Payne, Christine K.


    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.

  5. Extracting knowledge from protein structure geometry

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Røgen, Peter; Koehl, Patrice


    to minima of their free energy surfaces. It is well known however that the situation is more complicated as the current force fields used for molecular simulations fail to recognize native states from misfolded structures. In an attempt to solve this problem, we follow an alternate approach and derive a new......Protein structure prediction techniques proceed in two steps, namely the generation of many structural models for the protein of interest, followed by an evaluation of all these models to identify those that are native-like. In theory, the second step is easy, as native structures correspond...

  6. A 'periodic table' for protein structures. (United States)

    Taylor, William R


    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.

  7. Bayesian segmentation of protein secondary structure. (United States)

    Schmidler, S C; Liu, J S; Brutlag, D L


    We present a novel method for predicting the secondary structure of a protein from its amino acid sequence. Most existing methods predict each position in turn based on a local window of residues, sliding this window along the length of the sequence. In contrast, we develop a probabilistic model of protein sequence/structure relationships in terms of structural segments, and formulate secondary structure prediction as a general Bayesian inference problem. A distinctive feature of our approach is the ability to develop explicit probabilistic models for alpha-helices, beta-strands, and other classes of secondary structure, incorporating experimentally and empirically observed aspects of protein structure such as helical capping signals, side chain correlations, and segment length distributions. Our model is Markovian in the segments, permitting efficient exact calculation of the posterior probability distribution over all possible segmentations of the sequence using dynamic programming. The optimal segmentation is computed and compared to a predictor based on marginal posterior modes, and the latter is shown to provide significant improvement in predictive accuracy. The marginalization procedure provides exact secondary structure probabilities at each sequence position, which are shown to be reliable estimates of prediction uncertainty. We apply this model to a database of 452 nonhomologous structures, achieving accuracies as high as the best currently available methods. We conclude by discussing an extension of this framework to model nonlocal interactions in protein structures, providing a possible direction for future improvements in secondary structure prediction accuracy.

  8. Structural basis for recognition of synaptic vesicle protein 2C by botulinum neurotoxin A

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Benoit, Roger M.; Frey, Daniel; Hilbert, Manuel; Kevenaar, Josta T.; Wieser, Mara M.; Stirnimann, Christian U.; McMillan, David; Ceska, Tom; Lebon, Florence; Jaussi, Rolf; Steinmetz, Michel O.; Schertler, Gebhard F X; Hoogenraad, Casper C.; Capitani, Guido; Kammerer, Richard A.


    Botulinum neurotoxin A (BoNT/A) belongs to the most dangerous class of bioweapons. Despite this, BoNT/A is used to treat a wide range of common medical conditions such as migraines and a variety of ocular motility and movement disorders. BoNT/A is probably best known for its use as an antiwrinkle

  9. Lipid Vesicles for the Skin Delivery of Diclofenac: Cerosomes vs. Other Lipid Suspensions (United States)

    Fathi-Azarbayjani, Anahita; Ng, Kai Xin; Chan, Yew Weng; Chan, Sui Yung


    Purpose: Lipid suspensions as drug carriers, including conventional liposomes, ethosomes, transferosomes, proniosomes, niosomes, PEG-PPG-PEG niosomes and stratum corneum liposomes (cerosomes), were formulated and compared. Methods: Lipid vesicles were formulated and assessed with regards to enhancement of skin permeation of diclofenac and stability profiles of the formulations. Formulation-induced changes of the biophysical structure of excised human skin were monitored using the Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy. Results: The stability profiles of these suspensions over 12 weeks did not show any significant drug leakage from the vesicles of interest (p > 0.05). FTIR observations indicated that the vesicles increased stratum corneum (SC) lipid fluidization and altered protein conformation. Skin permeability experiments showed that the free unencapsulated drug in the cerosomal formulations caused significant increase in drug permeation across the skin (p hydrophilic drug in the skin lipids and the partition coefficient of the drug from these vesicles into the SC. Conclusion: Optimal drug entrapment in vesicles or alteration of the skin structure may not necessarily enhance the permeation of hydrophilic drugs across the human skin. These lipid vesicles may be further developed into carriers of both hydrophilic and hydrophobic drugs for topical and transdermal delivery, respectively. PMID:25789216

  10. Human cancer protein-protein interaction network: a structural perspective.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gozde Kar


    Full Text Available Protein-protein interaction networks provide a global picture of cellular function and biological processes. Some proteins act as hub proteins, highly connected to others, whereas some others have few interactions. The dysfunction of some interactions causes many diseases, including cancer. Proteins interact through their interfaces. Therefore, studying the interface properties of cancer-related proteins will help explain their role in the interaction networks. Similar or overlapping binding sites should be used repeatedly in single interface hub proteins, making them promiscuous. Alternatively, multi-interface hub proteins make use of several distinct binding sites to bind to different partners. We propose a methodology to integrate protein interfaces into cancer interaction networks (ciSPIN, cancer structural protein interface network. The interactions in the human protein interaction network are replaced by interfaces, coming from either known or predicted complexes. We provide a detailed analysis of cancer related human protein-protein interfaces and the topological properties of the cancer network. The results reveal that cancer-related proteins have smaller, more planar, more charged and less hydrophobic binding sites than non-cancer proteins, which may indicate low affinity and high specificity of the cancer-related interactions. We also classified the genes in ciSPIN according to phenotypes. Within phenotypes, for breast cancer, colorectal cancer and leukemia, interface properties were found to be discriminating from non-cancer interfaces with an accuracy of 71%, 67%, 61%, respectively. In addition, cancer-related proteins tend to interact with their partners through distinct interfaces, corresponding mostly to multi-interface hubs, which comprise 56% of cancer-related proteins, and constituting the nodes with higher essentiality in the network (76%. We illustrate the interface related affinity properties of two cancer-related hub

  11. Melanoma affects the composition of blood cell-derived extracellular vesicles

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nina Koliha


    Full Text Available Extracellular vesicles are specifically loaded with nucleic acids, lipids, and proteins from their parental cell. Therefore, the constitution of extracellular vesicles reflects the type and status of the originating cell and extracellular vesicles in melanoma patient’s plasma could be indicative for the tumor. Likewise, extracellular vesicles might influence tumor progression by regulating immune responses. We performed a broad protein characterization of extracellular vesicles from plasma of melanoma patients and healthy donors as well as from T cells, B cells, natural killer cells, monocytes, monocyte-derived dendritic cells and platelets using a multiplex bead-based platform. Using this method, we succeeded in analyzing 58 proteins that were differentially displayed on extracellular vesicles. Hierarchal clustering of protein intensity patterns grouped extracellular vesicles according to their originating cell type. The analysis of extracellular vesicles from stimulated B cells and monocyte-derived dendritic cells revealed the transfer of surface proteins to vesicles depending on the cell status. The protein profiles of plasma vesicles resembled the protein profiles of extracellular vesicles from platelets, antigen presenting cells and natural cells as shown by platelet markers, costimulatory proteins, and a natural killer cell subpopulation marker. In comparison to healthy plasma vesicles, melanoma plasma vesicles showed altered signals for platelet markers indicating a changed vesicle secretion or protein loading of extracellular vesicles by platelets and a lower CD8 signal that might be associated with a diminished activity of natural killer cells or T cells. As we hardly detected melanoma-derived vesicles in patient’s plasma, we concluded that blood cells induced the observed differences. In summary, our results question a direct effect of melanoma cells on the composition of extracellular vesicles in melanoma plasma, but rather argue

  12. Disruption of gene expression rhythms in mice lacking secretory vesicle proteins IA-2 and IA-2β


    Punia, Sohan; Rumery, Kyle K.; Yu, Elizabeth A.; Christopher M Lambert; Notkins, Abner L.; David R Weaver


    Insulinoma-associated protein (IA)-2 and IA-2β are transmembrane proteins involved in neurotransmitter secretion. Mice with targeted disruption of both IA-2 and IA-2β (double-knockout, or DKO mice) have numerous endocrine and physiological disruptions, including disruption of circadian and diurnal rhythms. In the present study, we have assessed the impact of disruption of IA-2 and IA-2β on molecular rhythms in the brain and peripheral oscillators. We used in situ hybridization to assess molec...

  13. Genetically Controlled Fusion, Exocytosis and Fission of Artificial Vesicles

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bönzli, Eva; Hadorn, Maik; De Lucrezia, Davide

    if a special class of viral proteins, termed fusogenic peptides, were added to the external medium. In the present work, we intend to develop genetically controlled fusion, fission and exocytosis of vesicles by the synthesis of peptides within vesicles. First, we enclosed synthesized peptides in vesicles...... to induce in a next step fusion of adjacent vesicles, fission and exocytosis of nested vesicles. Second, we will replace the peptides by an enclosed cell-free expression system to internally synthesize fusion peptides. To control the gene expression, different mechanisms are available, e.g. addition...... fusion, fission and exocytosis....

  14. Extracellular vesicles as emerging intercellular communicasomes. (United States)

    Yoon, Yae Jin; Kim, Oh Youn; Gho, Yong Song


    All living cells release extracellular vesicles having pleiotropic functions in intercellular communication. Mammalian extracellular vesicles, also known as exosomes and microvesicles, are spherical bilayered proteolipids composed of various bioactive molecules, including RNAs, DNAs, proteins, and lipids. Extracellular vesicles directly and indirectly control a diverse range of biological processes by transferring membrane proteins, signaling molecules, mRNAs, and miRNAs, and activating receptors of recipient cells. The active interaction of extracellular vesicles with other cells regulates various physiological and pathological conditions, including cancer, infectious diseases, and neurodegenerative disorders. Recent developments in high-throughput proteomics, transcriptomics, and lipidomics tools have provided ample data on the common and specific components of various types of extracellular vesicles. These studies may contribute to the understanding of the molecular mechanism involved in vesicular cargo sorting and the biogenesis of extracellular vesicles, and, further, to the identification of disease-specific biomarkers. This review focuses on the components, functions, and therapeutic and diagnostic potential of extracellular vesicles under various pathophysiological conditions.

  15. De novo membrane protein structure prediction. (United States)

    Nugent, Timothy


    Recent advances in identifying residue-residue contacts from large multiple sequence alignments have enabled impressive gains to be made in the field of protein structure prediction. In this chapter, we discuss these advances and provide a step-by-step guide to applying the latest tools to the de novo modelling of alpha-helical transmembrane proteins. As a practical example, we demonstrate the process of building an accurate 3D model of a G protein-coupled receptor, correctly orientated in the membrane, using only its primary protein sequence.

  16. A study of the enhanced sensitizing capacity of a contact allergen in lipid vesicle formulations

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Simonsson, Carl; Madsen, Jakob Torp; Graneli, Annette


    The growing focus on nanotechnology and the increased use of nano-sized structures, e.g. vesicles, in topical formulations has led to safety concerns. We have investigated the sensitizing capacity and penetration properties of a fluorescent model compound, rhodamine B isothiocyanate (RBITC), when...... penetration and increased formation of hapten-protein complexes in epidermis when RBITC is delivered in ethosomal formulations....

  17. Vesicles containing ion channels on crystalline surfaces-An FTIR and surface enhanced FTIR spectroscopic study (United States)

    Fischer, W. B.; Unverricht, I.; Kuhne, Ch.; Steiner, G.; Schrattenholz, A.; Maelicke, A.; Salzer, R.


    The kinetics of the adsorption of native vesicles containing the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) is monitored by ATR-FTIR and SEIRA spectroscopy. The membrane vesicles are adsorbed on Ge crystals. Experiments are done with neat Ge and with Ge crystals covered with a thin layer of silver clusters in order to obtain the enhancement effect of infrared adsorption. The nAChR shows β-sheet/turn structures at the interface. These results give evidence for the existence of these structures in the extracellular domains of the receptor. The potential for SEIRA in the investigation of proteins at interfaces and membrane processes is outlined.

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

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Cao, Haibo [Iowa State Univ., Ames, IA (United States)


    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.

  19. On characterization of anisotropic plant protein structures

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Krintiras, G.A.; Göbel, J.; Bouwman, W.G.; Goot, van der A.J.; Stefanidis, G.D.


    In this paper, a set of complementary techniques was used to characterize surface and bulk structures of an anisotropic Soy Protein Isolate (SPI)–vital wheat gluten blend after it was subjected to heat and simple shear flow in a Couette Cell. The structured biopolymer blend can form a basis for a

  20. Kinetic regulation of coated vesicle secretion

    CERN Document Server

    Foret, Lionel


    The secretion of vesicles for intracellular transport often rely on the aggregation of specialized membrane-bound proteins into a coat able to curve cell membranes. The nucleation and growth of a protein coat is a kinetic process that competes with the energy-consuming turnover of coat components between the membrane and the cytosol. We propose a generic kinetic description of coat assembly and the formation of coated vesicles, and discuss its implication to the dynamics of COP vesicles that traffic within the Golgi and with the Endoplasmic Reticulum. We show that stationary coats of fixed area emerge from the competition between coat growth and the recycling of coat components, in a fashion resembling the treadmilling of cytoskeletal filaments. We further show that the turnover of coat components allows for a highly sensitive switching mechanism between a quiescent and a vesicle producing membrane, upon a slowing down of the exchange kinetics. We claim that the existence of this switching behaviour, also tri...

  1. Pinkbar is an epithelial-specific BAR domain protein that generates planar membrane structures

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Pykäläinen, Anette; Boczkowska, Malgorzata; Zhao, Hongxia; Saarikangas, Juha; Rebowski, Grzegorz; Jansen, Maurice; Hakanen, Janne; Koskela, Essi V.; Peränen, Johan; Vihinen, Helena; Jokitalo, Eija; Salminen, Marjo; Ikonen, Elina; Dominguez, Roberto; Lappalainen, Pekka (Helsinki); (Penn)


    Bin/amphipysin/Rvs (BAR)-domain proteins sculpt cellular membranes and have key roles in processes such as endocytosis, cell motility and morphogenesis. BAR domains are divided into three subfamilies: BAR- and F-BAR-domain proteins generate positive membrane curvature and stabilize cellular invaginations, whereas I-BAR-domain proteins induce negative curvature and stabilize protrusions. We show that a previously uncharacterized member of the I-BAR subfamily, Pinkbar, is specifically expressed in intestinal epithelial cells, where it localizes to Rab13-positive vesicles and to the plasma membrane at intercellular junctions. Notably, the BAR domain of Pinkbar does not induce membrane tubulation but promotes the formation of planar membrane sheets. Structural and mutagenesis analyses reveal that the BAR domain of Pinkbar has a relatively flat lipid-binding interface and that it assembles into sheet-like oligomers in crystals and in solution, which may explain its unique membrane-deforming activity.

  2. The Protein Data Bank and structural genomics


    Westbrook, John; Feng, Zukang; Chen, Li; Yang, Huanwang; Berman, Helen M.


    The Protein Data Bank (PDB; continues to be actively involved in various aspects of the informatics of structural genomics projects—developing and maintaining the Target Registration Database (TargetDB), organizing data dictionaries that will define the specification for the exchange and deposition of data with the structural genomics centers and creating software tools to capture data from standard structure determination applications.

  3. The Protein Data Bank and structural genomics. (United States)

    Westbrook, John; Feng, Zukang; Chen, Li; Yang, Huanwang; Berman, Helen M


    The Protein Data Bank (PDB; continues to be actively involved in various aspects of the informatics of structural genomics projects--developing and maintaining the Target Registration Database (TargetDB), organizing data dictionaries that will define the specification for the exchange and deposition of data with the structural genomics centers and creating software tools to capture data from standard structure determination applications.

  4. The human cytomegalovirus US28 protein is located in endocytic vesicles and undergoes constitutive endocytosis and recycling

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Fraile-Ramos, A; Kledal, T N; Pelchen-Matthews, A


    Genes encoding chemokine receptor-like proteins have been found in herpes and poxviruses and implicated in viral pathogenesis. Here we describe the cellular distribution and trafficking of a human cytomegalovirus (HCMV) chemokine receptor encoded by the US28 gene, after transient and stable...

  5. Structure-guided deimmunization of therapeutic proteins. (United States)

    Parker, Andrew S; Choi, Yoonjoo; Griswold, Karl E; Bailey-Kellogg, Chris


    Therapeutic proteins continue to yield revolutionary new treatments for a growing spectrum of human disease, but the development of these powerful drugs requires solving a unique set of challenges. For instance, it is increasingly apparent that mitigating potential anti-therapeutic immune responses, driven by molecular recognition of a therapeutic protein's peptide fragments, may be best accomplished early in the drug development process. One may eliminate immunogenic peptide fragments by mutating the cognate amino acid sequences, but deimmunizing mutations are constrained by the need for a folded, stable, and functional protein structure. These two concerns may be competing, as the mutations that are best at reducing immunogenicity often involve amino acids that are substantially different physicochemically. We develop a novel approach, called EpiSweep, that simultaneously optimizes both concerns. Our algorithm identifies sets of mutations making such Pareto optimal trade-offs between structure and immunogenicity, embodied by a molecular mechanics energy function and a T-cell epitope predictor, respectively. EpiSweep integrates structure-based protein design, sequence-based protein deimmunization, and algorithms for finding the Pareto frontier of a design space. While structure-based protein design is NP-hard, we employ integer programming techniques that are efficient in practice. Furthermore, EpiSweep only invokes the optimizer once per identified Pareto optimal design. We show that EpiSweep designs of regions of the therapeutics erythropoietin and staphylokinase are predicted to outperform previous experimental efforts. We also demonstrate EpiSweep's capacity for deimmunization of the entire proteins, case analyses involving dozens of predicted epitopes, and tens of thousands of unique side-chain interactions. Ultimately, Epi-Sweep is a powerful protein design tool that guides the protein engineer toward the most promising immunotolerant biotherapeutic

  6. Mutations in Synaptojanin Disrupt Synaptic Vesicle Recycling


    Harris, Todd W.; Hartwieg, Erika; Horvitz, H. Robert; Jorgensen, Erik M.


    Synaptojanin is a polyphosphoinositide phosphatase that is found at synapses and binds to proteins implicated in endocytosis. For these reasons, it has been proposed that synaptojanin is involved in the recycling of synaptic vesicles. Here, we demonstrate that the unc-26 gene encodes the Caenorhabditis elegans ortholog of synaptojanin. unc-26 mutants exhibit defects in vesicle trafficking in several tissues, but most defects are found at synaptic termini. Specifically, we observed defects in ...

  7. The MULTICOM toolbox for protein structure prediction

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cheng Jianlin


    Full Text Available Abstract Background As genome sequencing is becoming routine in biomedical research, the total number of protein sequences is increasing exponentially, recently reaching over 108 million. However, only a tiny portion of these proteins (i.e. ~75,000 or Results To meet the need, we have developed a comprehensive MULTICOM toolbox consisting of a set of protein structure and structural feature prediction tools. These tools include secondary structure prediction, solvent accessibility prediction, disorder region prediction, domain boundary prediction, contact map prediction, disulfide bond prediction, beta-sheet topology prediction, fold recognition, multiple template combination and alignment, template-based tertiary structure modeling, protein model quality assessment, and mutation stability prediction. Conclusions These tools have been rigorously tested by many users in the last several years and/or during the last three rounds of the Critical Assessment of Techniques for Protein Structure Prediction (CASP7-9 from 2006 to 2010, achieving state-of-the-art or near performance. In order to facilitate bioinformatics research and technological development in the field, we have made the MULTICOM toolbox freely available as web services and/or software packages for academic use and scientific research. It is available at

  8. Structure of the Yeast Polarity Protein Sro7 Reveals a SNARE Regulatory Mechanism

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hattendorf, D.A.; Andreeva, A.; Gangar, A.; Brennwald, P.J.; Weis, W.I.; /Stanford U., Med. School /North Carolina U.


    Polarized exocytosis requires coordination between the actin cytoskeleton and the exocytic machinery responsible for fusion of secretory vesicles at specific sites on the plasma membrane. Fusion requires formation of a complex between a vesicle-bound R-SNARE and plasma membrane Qa, Qb and Qc SNARE proteins. Proteins in the lethal giant larvae protein family, including lethal giant larvae and tomosyn in metazoans and Sro7 in yeast, interact with Q-SNAREs and are emerging as key regulators of polarized exocytosis. The crystal structure of Sro7 reveals two seven-bladed WD40 {beta}-propellers followed by a 60-residue-long 'tail', which is bound to the surface of the amino-terminal propeller. Deletion of the Sro7 tail enables binding to the Qbc SNARE region of Sec9 and this interaction inhibits SNARE complex assembly. The N-terminal domain of Sec9 provides a second, high-affinity Sro7 interaction that is unaffected by the tail. The results suggest that Sro7 acts as an allosteric regulator of exocytosis through interactions with factors that control the tail. Sequence alignments indicate that lethal giant larvae and tomosyn have a two-{beta}-propeller fold similar to that of Sro7, but only tomosyn appears to retain the regulatory tail.

  9. MiR-21-5p in urinary extracellular vesicles is a novel biomarker of urothelial carcinoma


    Matsuzaki, Kyosuke; Fujita, Kazutoshi; Jingushi, Kentaro; Kawashima, Atsunari; Ujike, Takeshi; Nagahara, Akira; Ueda, Yuko; Tanigawa, Go; Yoshioka, Iwao; Ueda, Koji; Hanayama, Rikinari; Uemura, Motohide; Miyagawa, Yasushi; Tsujikawa, Kazutake; Nonomura, Norio


    Background Extracellular vesicles are lipid bilayer vesicles containing protein, messengerRNA and microRNA. Cancer cell-derived extracellular vesicles may be diagnostic and therapeutic targets. We extracted extracellular vesicles from urine of urothelial carcinoma patients and the control group to identify cancer-specific microRNAs in urinary extracellular vesicles as new biomarkers. Materials and methods microRNA from urinary extracellular vesicles extracted from 6 urothelial carcinoma patie...

  10. Structural deformation upon protein-protein interaction: A structural alphabet approach (United States)

    Martin, Juliette; Regad, Leslie; Lecornet, Hélène; Camproux, Anne-Claude


    Background In a number of protein-protein complexes, the 3D structures of bound and unbound partners significantly differ, supporting the induced fit hypothesis for protein-protein binding. Results In this study, we explore the induced fit modifications on a set of 124 proteins available in both bound and unbound forms, in terms of local structure. The local structure is described thanks to a structural alphabet of 27 structural letters that allows a detailed description of the backbone. Using a control set to distinguish induced fit from experimental error and natural protein flexibility, we show that the fraction of structural letters modified upon binding is significantly greater than in the control set (36% versus 28%). This proportion is even greater in the interface regions (41%). Interface regions preferentially involve coils. Our analysis further reveals that some structural letters in coil are not favored in the interface. We show that certain structural letters in coil are particularly subject to modifications at the interface, and that the severity of structural change also varies. These information are used to derive a structural letter substitution matrix that summarizes the local structural changes observed in our data set. We also illustrate the usefulness of our approach to identify common binding motifs in unrelated proteins. Conclusion Our study provides qualitative information about induced fit. These results could be of help for flexible docking. PMID:18307769

  11. AHNAK enables mammary carcinoma cells to produce extracellular vesicles that increase neighboring fibroblast cell motility. (United States)

    Silva, Thaiomara A; Smuczek, Basílio; Valadão, Iuri C; Dzik, Luciana M; Iglesia, Rebeca P; Cruz, Mário C; Zelanis, André; de Siqueira, Adriane S; Serrano, Solange M T; Goldberg, Gary S; Jaeger, Ruy G; Freitas, Vanessa M


    Extracellular vesicles play important roles in tumor development. Many components of these structures, including microvesicles and exosomes, have been defined. However, mechanisms by which extracellular vesicles affect tumor progression are not fully understood. Here, we investigated vesicular communication between mammary carcinoma cells and neighboring nontransformed mammary fibroblasts. Nonbiased proteomic analysis found that over 1% of the entire proteome is represented in these vesicles, with the neuroblast differentiation associated protein AHNAK and annexin A2 being the most abundant. In particular, AHNAK was found to be the most prominent component of these vesicles based on peptide number, and appeared necessary for their formation. In addition, we report here that carcinoma cells produce vesicles that promote the migration of recipient fibroblasts. These data suggest that AHNAK enables mammary carcinoma cells to produce and release extracellular vesicles that cause disruption of the stroma by surrounding fibroblasts. This paradigm reveals fundamental mechanisms by which vesicular communication between carcinoma cells and stromal cells can promote cancer progression in the tumor microenvironment.

  12. Depression-like behavior induced by nesfatin-1 in rats: involvement of increased immune activation and imbalance of synaptic vesicle proteins

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ge eJinfang


    Full Text Available Depression is a multicausal disorder and has been associated with metabolism regulation and immuno-inflammatory reaction. The anorectic molecule nesfatin-1 has recently been characterized as a potential mood regulator, but its precise effect on depression and the possible mechanisms remain unknown, especially when given peripherally. In the present study, nesfatin-1 was intraperitoneally injected to the rats and the depression-like behavior and activity of the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA axis were evaluated. The plasma concentrations of nesfatin-1, interleukin 6 (IL-6, and C-reactive protein (CRP; and the hypothalamic expression levels of nesfatin-1, synapsinⅠ, and synaptotagminⅠmRNA were evaluated in nesfatin-1 chronically treated rats. The results showed that both acute and chronic administration of nesfatin-1 increased immobility in the forced swimming test (FST, and resulted in the hyperactivity of HPA axis, as indicated by the increase of plasma corticosterone concentration and hypothalamic expression of corticotropin-releasing hormone (CRH mRNA. Moreover, after chronic nesfatin-1 administration, the rats exhibited decreased activity and exploratory behavior in the open field test (OFT and increased mRNA expression of synapsinⅠand synaptotagminⅠin the hypothalamus. Furthermore, chronic administration of nesfatin-1 elevated plasma concentrations of IL-6 and CRP, which were positively correlated with despair behavior, plasma corticosterone level, and the hypothalamic mRNA expression of synapsinⅠ and synaptotagminⅠ. These results indicated that exogenous nesfatin-1 could induce the immune-inflammatory activation,which might be a central hug linking the depression-like behavior and the imbalanced mRNA expression of synaptic vesicle proteins in the hypothalamus.

  13. The Protein Content of Extracellular Vesicles Derived from Expanded Human Umbilical Cord Blood-Derived CD133+and Human Bone Marrow-Derived Mesenchymal Stem Cells Partially Explains Why both Sources are Advantageous for Regenerative Medicine. (United States)

    Angulski, Addeli B B; Capriglione, Luiz G; Batista, Michel; Marcon, Bruna H; Senegaglia, Alexandra C; Stimamiglio, Marco A; Correa, Alejandro


    Adult stem cells have beneficial effects when exposed to damaged tissue due, at least in part, to their paracrine activity, which includes soluble factors and extracellular vesicles (EVs). Given the multiplicity of signals carried by these vesicles through the horizontal transfer of functional molecules, human mesenchymal stem cell (hMSCs) and CD133 + cell-derived EVs have been tested in various disease models and shown to recover damaged tissues. In this study, we profiled the protein content of EVs derived from expanded human CD133 + cells and bone marrow-derived hMSCs with the intention of better understanding the functions performed by these vesicles/cells and delineating the most appropriate use of each EV in future therapeutic procedures. Using LC-MS/MS analysis, we identified 623 proteins for expanded CD133 + -EVs and 797 proteins for hMSCs-EVs. Although the EVs from both origins were qualitatively similar, when protein abundance was considered, hMSCs-EVs and CD133 + -EVs were different. Gene Ontology (GO) enrichment analysis in CD133 + -EVs revealed proteins involved in a variety of angiogenesis-related functions as well proteins related to the cytoskeleton and highly implicated in cell motility and cellular activation. In contrast, when overrepresented proteins in hMSCs-EVs were analyzed, a GO cluster of immune response-related genes involved with immune response-regulating factors acting on phagocytosis and innate immunity was identified. Together our data demonstrate that from the point of view of protein content, expanded CD133 + -EVs and hMSCs-EVs are in part similar but also sufficiently different to reflect the main beneficial paracrine effects widely reported in pre-clinical studies using expanded CD133 + cells and/or hBM-MSCs.

  14. Loading of Vesicles into Soft Amphiphilic Nanotubes using Osmosis. (United States)

    Erne, Petra M; van Bezouwen, Laura S; Štacko, Peter; van Dijken, Derk Jan; Chen, Jiawen; Stuart, Marc C A; Boekema, Egbert J; Feringa, Ben L


    The facile assembly of higher-order nanoarchitectures from simple building blocks is demonstrated by the loading of vesicles into soft amphiphilic nanotubes using osmosis. The nanotubes are constructed from rigid interdigitated bilayers which are capped with vesicles comprising phospholipid-based flexible bilayers. When a hyperosmotic gradient is applied to these vesicle-capped nanotubes, the closed system loses water and the more flexible vesicle bilayer is pulled inwards. This leads to inclusion of vesicles inside the nanotubes without affecting the tube structure, showing controlled reorganization of the self-assembled multicomponent system upon a simple osmotic stimulus. © 2015 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  15. Size distribution and radial density profile of synaptic vesicles by SAXS and light scattering

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Castorph, Simon; Salditt, Tim [Institute for X-ray Physics, Goettingen (Germany); Holt, Matthew; Jahn, Reinhard [Max Plank Institute for Biophysical Chemistry, Goettingen (Germany); Sztucki, Michael [European Synchrotron Radiation Facility, Grenoble (France)


    Synaptic vesicles are small membraneous organelles within the nerve terminal, encapsulating neurotransmitters by a lipid bilayer. The transport of the neurotransmitter, the fusion at the plasma membrane, and the release of the stored neurotransmitters into the synaptic cleft are since long know as essential step in nerve conduction of the chemical synapse. A detailed structural view of these molecular mechanisms is still lacking, not withstanding the enormous progress in the field during recent years. From measurements and quantitative fitting of small angle X-ray scattering curves and dynamic light scattering the averaged structural properties of synaptic vesicles can be determined. We present SAXS measurements and fits revealing the width of the size distribution function and details of the radial scattering length profile of synaptic vesicles from rat brain. Representative values for the inner and outer radius and the size polydispersity as well as the density and width of the outer protein layer are obtained.

  16. Utilization of Protein Crystal Structures in Industry (United States)

    Ishikawa, Kohki

    In industry, protein crystallography is used in mainly two technologies. One is structure-based drug design, and the other is structure-based enzyme engineering. Some successful cases together with recent advances are presented in this article. The cases include the development of an anti-influenza drug, and the introduction of engineered acid phosphatase to the manufacturing process of nucleotides used as umami seasoning.

  17. Structural Changes of Malt Proteins During Boiling

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)


    Full Text Available Changes in the physicochemical properties and structure of proteins derived from two malt varieties (Baudin and Guangmai during wort boiling were investigated by differential scanning calorimetry, SDS-PAGE, two-dimensional electrophoresis, gel filtration chromatography and circular dichroism spectroscopy. The results showed that both protein content and amino acid composition changed only slightly during boiling, and that boiling might cause a gradual unfolding of protein structures, as indicated by the decrease in surface hydrophobicity and free sulfhydryl content and enthalpy value, as well as reduced α-helix contents and markedly increased random coil contents. It was also found that major component of both worts was a boiling-resistant protein with a molecular mass of 40 kDa, and that according to the two-dimensional electrophoresis and SE-HPLC analyses, a small amount of soluble aggregates might be formed via hydrophobic interactions. It was thus concluded that changes of protein structure caused by boiling that might influence beer quality are largely independent of malt variety.

  18. Structural mechanisms of nonplanar hemes in proteins

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Shelnutt, J.A.


    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. Intertwined associations in structures of homooligomeric proteins. (United States)

    Mackinnon, Stephen S; Malevanets, Anatoly; Wodak, Shoshana J


    Intertwined homo-oligomers are complexes comprising identical protein subunits, where small segments or compact protein substructures (domains) are exchanged between the subunits. Using a formal definition of intertwined homo-oligomers, we survey the Protein Data Bank for all such complexes. Results show that intertwining occurs in 13,442 (24%) of all surveyed structures. A majority (∼72%) exchanges one contiguous chain segment of varying length. Another ∼10%, exchange structural domains, and the remaining ∼20% display complex intertwining topologies. Smaller proteins are more often intertwined, and intertwining is dominant in solution homodimers. These findings and analyses of various properties of the major category of intertwined complexes, their interfaces and quaternary context, support the physiological role of intertwining in promoting homooligomer stability. Furthermore, the number of different intertwining modes observed in families of related proteins is limited, and likely specific to the protein fold. These findings yield unique insights into the role of intertwining in homomeric association. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  20. Hemoglobin-vesicle, a cellular artificial oxygen carrier that fulfils the physiological roles of the red blood cell structure. (United States)

    Sakai, Hiromi; Sou, Keitaro; Horinouchi, Hirohisa; Kobayashi, Koichi; Tsuchida, Eishun


    Hb-vesicles (HbV) are artificial O(2) carriers encapsulating concentrated Hb solution (35 g/dL) with a phospholipid bilayer membrane (liposome). The concentration of the HbV suspension is extremely high ([Hb] = 10 g/dL) and it has an O(2) carrying capacity that is comparable to that of blood. HbV is much smaller than RBC (250 vs. 8000 nm), but it recreates the functions of RBCs; (i) the slower rate of O(2) unloading than Hb solution; (ii) colloid osmotic pressure is zero; (iii) the viscosity of a HbV suspension is adjustable to that of blood; (iv) HbV is finally captured by and degraded in RES; (v) co-encapsulation of an allosteric effector to regulate O(2) affinity; (vi) the lipid bilayer membrane prevents direct contact of Hb and vasculature; (vii) NO-binding is retarded to some extent by an intracellular diffusion barrier, and HbV does not induce vasoconstriction. (viii) Both RBC and HbV can be a carrier of not only O(2) but also exogenous CO. However, HbV has limitations such as a shorter functional half-life when compared with RBCs. On the other hand, the advantages of HbV are that it is pathogen-free and blood-type-antigen-free; moreover, it can withstand long-term storage of a few years, none of which can be achieved by the RBC transfusion systems.

  1. The hydration structure of DNA and proteins

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Niimura, Nobuo [Japan Atomic Energy Research Inst., Tokai, Ibaraki (Japan). Tokai Research Establishment


    Water-soluble proteins are surrounded by water molecules, and the water molecules mediate the biological processes: i.e. the protein folding, the enzymatic reaction, the molecular recognition via hydrogen bonds, electrostatic interactions and van der Waals interactions. It is essential to know the structural information such as orientation and dynamical behavior of water molecules including hydrogen atoms in order to characterize these interactions. The neutron analysis can determine the positions of the hydrogen atoms at the medium resolution in the protein crystallography (d{sub min}{approx}2.0 A). Recently we have constructed the high-resolution neutron diffractometer (BIX) dedicated for the biological macromolecules. By using this diffractometer, the high resolution (1.5 or 1.6A) neutron structure analyses of sperm whale myoglobin, a wild-type rubredoxin from Pyrococcus furiosus, and the rubredoxin mutant have been successfully carried out and their hydration structure including hydrogen atoms have been observed. Hydrogen atoms in the water molecule can be clearly identified in two boomerang-shaped water molecules and the forming of the hydrogen bonds between the two water molecules can be recognized well. It has been concluded that hydration structure observed by the high resolution neutron protein crystallography provides where a water molecule locates, and how it binds to the neighbor atoms, and how it behaves. (M.Suetake)

  2. Extracellular vesicles and blood diseases. (United States)

    Nomura, Shosaku


    Extracellular vesicles (EVs) are small membrane vesicles released from many different cell types by the exocytic budding of the plasma membrane in response to cellular activation or apoptosis. EVs disseminate various bioactive effectors originating from the parent cells and transfer functional RNA and protein between cells, enabling them to alter vascular function and induce biological responses involved in vascular homeostasis. Although most EVs in human blood originate from platelets, EVs are also released from leukocytes, erythrocytes, endothelial cells, smooth muscle cells, and cancer cells. EVs were initially thought to be small particles with procoagulant activity; however, they can also evoke cellular responses in the immediate microenvironments and transport microRNAs (miRNA) into target cells. In this review, we summarize the recent literature relevant to EVs, including a growing list of clinical disorders that are associated with elevated EV levels. These studies suggest that EVs play roles in various blood diseases.

  3. Proteomic analysis of extracellular vesicles derived from Mycobacterium tuberculosis. (United States)

    Lee, Jaewook; Kim, Si-Hyun; Choi, Dong-Sic; Lee, Jong Seok; Kim, Dae-Kyum; Go, Gyeongyun; Park, Seon-Min; Kim, Si Hyun; Shin, Jeong Hwan; Chang, Chulhun L; Gho, Yong Song


    The release of extracellular vesicles, also known as outer membrane vesicles, membrane vesicles, exosomes, and microvesicles, is an evolutionarily conserved phenomenon from bacteria to eukaryotes. It has been reported that Mycobacterium tuberculosis releases extracellular vesicles harboring immunologically active molecules, and these extracellular vesicles have been suggested to be applicable in vaccine development and biomarker discovery. However, the comprehensive proteomic analysis has not been performed for M. tuberculosis extracellular vesicles. In this study, we identified a total of 287 vesicular proteins by four LC-MS/MS analyses with high confidence. In addition, we identified several vesicular proteins associated with the virulence of M. tuberculosis. This comprehensive proteome profile will help elucidate the pathogenic mechanism of M. tuberculosis. The data have been deposited to the ProteomeXchange with identifier PXD001160 ( © 2015 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  4. Fragile X mental retardation protein controls synaptic vesicle exocytosis by modulating N-type calcium channel density (United States)

    Ferron, Laurent; Nieto-Rostro, Manuela; Cassidy, John S.; Dolphin, Annette C.


    Fragile X syndrome (FXS), the most common heritable form of mental retardation, is characterized by synaptic dysfunction. Synaptic transmission depends critically on presynaptic calcium entry via voltage-gated calcium (CaV) channels. Here we show that the functional expression of neuronal N-type CaV channels (CaV2.2) is regulated by fragile X mental retardation protein (FMRP). We find that FMRP knockdown in dorsal root ganglion neurons increases CaV channel density in somata and in presynaptic terminals. We then show that FMRP controls CaV2.2 surface expression by targeting the channels to the proteasome for degradation. The interaction between FMRP and CaV2.2 occurs between the carboxy-terminal domain of FMRP and domains of CaV2.2 known to interact with the neurotransmitter release machinery. Finally, we show that FMRP controls synaptic exocytosis via CaV2.2 channels. Our data indicate that FMRP is a potent regulator of presynaptic activity, and its loss is likely to contribute to synaptic dysfunction in FXS.

  5. Soft vesicles in the synthesis of hard materials. (United States)

    Dong, Renhao; Liu, Weimin; Hao, Jingcheng


    Vesicles of surfactants in aqueous solution have received considerable attention because of their use as simple model systems for biological membranes and their applications in various fields including colloids, pharmaceuticals, and materials. Because of their architecture, vesicles could prove useful as "soft" templates for the synthesis of "hard materials". The vesicle phase, however, has been challenging and difficult to work with in the construction of hard materials. In the solution-phase synthesis of various inorganic or macromolecular materials, templating methods provide a powerful strategy to control the size, morphology, and composition of the resulting micro- and nanostructures. In comparison with hard templates, soft templates are generally constructed using amphiphilic molecules, especially surfactants and amphiphilic polymers. These types of compounds offer advantages including the wide variety of available templates, simple fabrication processes under mild conditions, and easy removal of the templates with less damage to the final structures. Researchers have used many ordered molecular aggregates such as vesicles, micelles, liquid crystals, emulsion droplets, and lipid nanotubes as templates or structure-directing agents to control the synthesis or assembly hard micro- and nanomaterials composed from inorganic compounds or polymers. In addition to their range of sizes and morphologies, vesicles present unique structures that can simultaneously supply different microenvironments for the growth and assembly of hard materials: the inner chamber of vesicles, the outer surface of the vesicles, and the space between bilayers. Two main approaches for applying vesicles in the field of hard materials have been explored: (i) in situ synthesis of micro- or nanomaterials within a specific microenvironment by vesicle templating and (ii) the assembly or incorporation of guest materials during the formation of vesicles. This Account provides an in-depth look at

  6. Raman spectroscopy of single extracellular vesicles reveals subpopulations with varying membrane content (Conference Presentation) (United States)

    Smith, Zachary J.; Lee, Changwon; Rojalin, Tatu; Carney, Randy P.; Hazari, Sidhartha; Knudson, Alisha; Lam, Kit S.; Saari, Heikki; Lazaro Ibañez, Elisa; Viitala, Tapani; Laaksonen, Timo; Yliperttula, Marjo; Wachsmann-Hogiu, Sebastian


    Exosomes are small (~100nm) membrane bound vesicles excreted by cells as part of their normal biological processes. These extracellular vesicles are currently an area of intense research, since they were recently found to carry functional mRNA that allows transfer of proteins and other cellular instructions between cells. Exosomes have been implicated in a wide range of diseases, including cancer. Cancer cells are known to have increased exosome production, and may use those exosomes to prepare remote environments for metastasis. Therefore, there is a strong need to develop characterization methods to help understand the structure and function of these vesicles. However, current techniques, such as proteomics and genomics technologies, rely on aggregating a large amount of exosome material and reporting on chemical content that is averaged over many millions of exosomes. Here we report on the use of laser-tweezers Raman spectroscopy (LTRS) to probe individual vesicles, discovering distinct heterogeneity among exosomes both within a cell line, as well as between different cell lines. Through principal components analysis followed by hierarchical clustering, we have identified four "subpopulations" of exosomes shared across seven cell lines. The key chemical differences between these subpopulations, as determined by spectral analysis of the principal component loadings, are primarily related to membrane composition. Specifically, the differences can be ascribed to cholesterol content, cholesterol to phospholipid ratio, and surface protein expression. Thus, we have shown LTRS to be a powerful method to probe the chemical content of single extracellular vesicles.

  7. Structured illumination microscopy using photoswitchable fluorescent proteins (United States)

    Hirvonen, Liisa; Mandula, Ondrej; Wicker, Kai; Heintzmann, Rainer


    In fluorescence microscopy the lateral resolution is limited to about 200 nm because of diffraction. Resolution improvement by a factor of two can be achieved using structured illumination, where a ine grating is projected onto the sample, and the final image is reconstructed from a set of images taken at different grating positions. Further resolution improvement can be achieved by saturating the transitions involved in fluorescence emission. Recently discovered photoswitchable proteins undergo transitions that are saturable at low illumination intensity. Combining this concept with structured illumination, theoretically unlimited resolution can be achieved, where the smallest resolvable distance will be determined by signal-to-noise ratio. This work focuses on the use of the photoswitchable protein Dronpa with structured illumination to achieve nanometre scale resolution in fixed cells.

  8. Predicting protein structure classes from function predictions

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Sommer, I.; Rahnenfuhrer, J.; de Lichtenberg, Ulrik


    We introduce a new approach to using the information contained in sequence-to-function prediction data in order to recognize protein template classes, a critical step in predicting protein structure. The data on which our method is based comprise probabilities of functional categories; for given...... query sequences these probabilities are obtained by a neural net that has previously been trained on a variety of functionally important features. On a training set of sequences we assess the relevance of individual functional categories for identifying a given structural family. Using a combination...... of the most relevant categories, the likelihood of a query sequence to belong to a specific family can be estimated. Results: The performance of the method is evaluated using cross-validation. For a fixed structural family and for every sequence, a score is calculated that measures the evidence for family...

  9. The endocytosis gene END3 is essential for the glucose-induced rapid decline of small vesicles in the extracellular fraction in Saccharomyces cerevisiae. (United States)

    Giardina, Bennett J; Stein, Kathryn; Chiang, Hui-Ling


    Protein secretion is a fundamental process in all living cells. Gluconeogenic enzymes are secreted when Saccharomyces cerevisiae are grown in media containing low glucose. However, when cells are transferred to media containing high glucose, they are internalized. We investigated whether or not gluconeogenic enzymes were associated with extracellular vesicles in glucose-starved cells. We also examined the role that the endocytosis gene END3 plays in the internalization of extracellular proteins/vesicles in response to glucose addition. Transmission electron microscopy was performed to determine the presence of extracellular vesicles in glucose-starved wild-type cells and the dynamics of vesicle transport in cells lacking the END3 gene. Proteomics was used to identify extracellular proteins that associated with these vesicles. Total extracts prepared from glucose-starved cells consisted of about 95% small vesicles (30-50 nm) and 5% large structures (100-300 nm). The addition of glucose caused a rapid decline in small extracellular vesicles in wild-type cells. However, most of the extracellular vesicles were still observed in cells lacking the END3 gene following glucose replenishment. Proteomics was used to identify 72 extracellular proteins that may be associated with these vesicles. Gluconeogenic enzymes fructose-1,6-bisphosphatase, malate dehydrogenase, isocitrate lyase, and phosphoenolpyruvate carboxykinase, as well as non-gluconeogenic enzymes glyceraldehyde-3-phosphate dehydrogenase and cyclophilin A, were distributed in the vesicle-enriched fraction in total extracts prepared from cells grown in low glucose. Distribution of these proteins in the vesicle-enriched fraction required the integrity of the membranes. When glucose was added to glucose-starved wild-type cells, levels of extracellular fructose-1,6-bisphosphatase, malate dehydrogenase, isocitrate lyase, phosphoenolpyruvate carboxykinase, glyceraldehyde-3-phosphate dehydrogenase, and cyclophilin A were

  10. Trends in structural coverage of the protein universe and the impact of the Protein Structure Initiative (United States)

    Khafizov, Kamil; Madrid-Aliste, Carlos; Almo, Steven C.; Fiser, Andras


    The exponential growth of protein sequence data provides an ever-expanding body of unannotated and misannotated proteins. The National Institutes of Health-supported Protein Structure Initiative and related worldwide structural genomics efforts facilitate functional annotation of proteins through structural characterization. Recently there have been profound changes in the taxonomic composition of sequence databases, which are effectively redefining the scope and contribution of these large-scale structure-based efforts. The faster-growing bacterial genomic entries have overtaken the eukaryotic entries over the last 5 y, but also have become more redundant. Despite the enormous increase in the number of sequences, the overall structural coverage of proteins—including proteins for which reliable homology models can be generated—on the residue level has increased from 30% to 40% over the last 10 y. Structural genomics efforts contributed ∼50% of this new structural coverage, despite determining only ∼10% of all new structures. Based on current trends, it is expected that ∼55% structural coverage (the level required for significant functional insight) will be achieved within 15 y, whereas without structural genomics efforts, realizing this goal will take approximately twice as long. PMID:24567391

  11. CD18-mediated adhesion is required for the induction of a proinflammatory phenotype in lung epithelial cells by mononuclear cell-derived extracellular vesicles. (United States)

    Neri, Tommaso; Scalise, Valentina; Passalacqua, Ilaria; Giusti, Ilaria; Lombardi, Stefania; Balia, Cristina; D'Alessandro, Delfo; Berrettini, Stefano; Pedrinelli, Roberto; Paggiaro, Pierluigi; Dolo, Vincenza; Celi, Alessandro


    Extracellular vesicles are submicron vesicles that upregulate the synthesis of proinflammatory mediators by lung epithelial cells. We investigated whether these structures adhere to lung epithelial cells, and whether adhesion is a prerequisite for their proinflammatory activity. Extracellular vesicles were generated by stimulation of normal human mononuclear cells with the calcium ionophore A23187, and labelled with carboxyfluorescein diacetate succinimidyl ester. Adhesion of vesicles to monolayers of immortalized bronchial epithelial (16HBE) and alveolar (A549) cells was analyzed by fluorescence microscopy. The role of candidate adhesion receptors was evaluated with inhibitory monoclonal antibodies and soluble peptides. The synthesis of proinflammatory mediators was assessed by ELISA. Transmission electron microscopy confirmed the generation of closed vesicles with an approximate size range between 50 and 600 nm. Adhesion of extracellular vesicles to epithelial cells was upregulated upon stimulation of the latter with tumor necrosis factor-α. Adhesion was blocked by an anti-CD18 antibody, by peptides containing the sequence RGD and, to a lesser extent, by an antibody to ICAM-1. The same molecules also blocked the upregulation of the synthesis of interleukin-8 and monocyte chemotactic protein-1 induced by extracellular vesicles. CD18-mediated adhesion of extracellular vesicles is a prerequisite for their proinflammatory activity. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  12. Protein Structure and the Sequential Structure of mRNA

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Brunak, Søren; Engelbrecht, Jacob


    protein, The degeneracy of the genetic code allows for a biased selection of codons which may control the translational rate of the ribosome, and may thus in vivo have a catalyzing effect on the folding of the polypeptide chain, A complete search for GenBank nucleotide sequences coding for structural...

  13. Photoinduced structural changes to protein kinase A (United States)

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


    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.

  14. Electronic structure of bacterial surface protein layers (United States)

    Maslyuk, Volodymyr V.; Mertig, Ingrid; Bredow, Thomas; Mertig, Michael; Vyalikh, Denis V.; Molodtsov, Serguei L.


    We report an approach for the calculation of the electronic density of states of the dried two-dimensional crystalline surface protein layer ( S layer) of the bacterium Bacillus sphaericus NCTC 9602. The proposed model is based on the consideration of individual amino acids in the corresponding conformation of the peptide chain which additively contribute to the electronic structure of the entire protein complex. The derived results agree well with the experimental data obtained by means of photoemission (PE), resonant PE, and near-edge x-ray absorption spectroscopy.

  15. Facile preparation of salivary extracellular vesicles for cancer proteomics (United States)

    Sun, Yan; Xia, Zhijun; Shang, Zhi; Sun, Kaibo; Niu, Xiaomin; Qian, Liqiang; Fan, Liu-Yin; Cao, Cheng-Xi; Xiao, Hua


    Extracellular vesicles (EVs) are membrane surrounded structures released by cells, which have been increasingly recognized as mediators of intercellular communication. Recent reports indicate that EVs participate in important biological processes and could serve as potential source for cancer biomarkers. As an attractive EVs source with merit of non-invasiveness, human saliva is a unique medium for clinical diagnostics. Thus, we proposed a facile approach to prepare salivary extracellular vesicles (SEVs). Affinity chromatography column combined with filter system (ACCF) was developed to efficiently remove the high abundant proteins and viscous interferences of saliva. Protein profiling in the SEVs obtained by this strategy was compared with conventional centrifugation method, which demonstrated that about 70% more SEVs proteins could be revealed. To explore its utility for cancer proteomics, we analyzed the proteome of SEVs in lung cancer patients and normal controls. Shotgun proteomic analysis illustrated that 113 and 95 proteins have been identified in cancer group and control group, respectively. Among those 63 proteins that have been consistently discovered only in cancer group, 12 proteins are lung cancer related. Our results demonstrated that SEVs prepared through the developed strategy are valuable samples for proteomics and could serve as a promising liquid biopsy for cancer.

  16. Preparation of large monodisperse vesicles.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ting F Zhu

    Full Text Available Preparation of monodisperse vesicles is important both for research purposes and for practical applications. While the extrusion of vesicles through small pores (approximately 100 nm in diameter results in relatively uniform populations of vesicles, extrusion to larger sizes results in very heterogeneous populations of vesicles. Here we report a simple method for preparing large monodisperse multilamellar vesicles through a combination of extrusion and large-pore dialysis. For example, extrusion of polydisperse vesicles through 5-microm-diameter pores eliminates vesicles larger than 5 microm in diameter. Dialysis of extruded vesicles against 3-microm-pore-size polycarbonate membranes eliminates vesicles smaller than 3 microm in diameter, leaving behind a population of monodisperse vesicles with a mean diameter of approximately 4 microm. The simplicity of this method makes it an effective tool for laboratory vesicle preparation with potential applications in preparing large monodisperse liposomes for drug delivery.

  17. Single-step isolation of extracellular vesicles by size-exclusion chromatography


    Böing, Anita N.; van der Pol, Edwin; Anita E. Grootemaat; Coumans, Frank A. W.; Sturk, Auguste; Nieuwland, Rienk


    Background: Isolation of extracellular vesicles from plasma is a challenge due to the presence of proteins and lipoproteins. Isolation of vesicles using differential centrifugation or density-gradient ultracentrifugation results in co-isolation of contaminants such as protein aggregates and incomplete separation of vesicles from lipoproteins, respectively.Aim: To develop a single-step protocol to isolate vesicles from human body fluids.Methods: Platelet-free supernatant, derived from platelet...

  18. Spatial modeling of vesicle transport and the cytoskeleton: the challenge of hitting the right road.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michael Klann

    Full Text Available The membrane trafficking machinery provides a transport and sorting system for many cellular proteins. We propose a mechanistic agent-based computer simulation to integrate and test the hypothesis of vesicle transport embedded into a detailed model cell. The method tracks both the number and location of the vesicles. Thus both the stochastic properties due to the low numbers and the spatial aspects are preserved. The underlying molecular interactions that control the vesicle actions are included in a multi-scale manner based on the model of Heinrich and Rapoport (2005. By adding motor proteins we can improve the recycling process of SNAREs and model cell polarization. Our model also predicts that coat molecules should have a high turnover at the compartment membranes, while the turnover of motor proteins has to be slow. The modular structure of the underlying model keeps it tractable despite the overall complexity of the vesicle system. We apply our model to receptor-mediated endocytosis and show how a polarized cytoskeleton structure leads to polarized distributions in the plasma membrane both of SNAREs and the Ste2p receptor in yeast. In addition, we can couple signal transduction and membrane trafficking steps in one simulation, which enables analyzing the effect of receptor-mediated endocytosis on signaling.

  19. Hybrid, Nanoscale Phospholipid/Block Copolymer Vesicles

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bo Liedberg


    Full Text Available Hybrid phospholipid/block copolymer vesicles, in which the polymeric membrane is blended with phospholipids, display interesting self-assembly behavior, incorporating the robustness and chemical versatility of polymersomes with the softness and biocompatibility of liposomes. Such structures can be conveniently characterized by preparing giant unilamellar vesicles (GUVs via electroformation. Here, we are interested in exploring the self-assembly and properties of the analogous nanoscale hybrid vesicles (ca. 100 nm in diameter of the same composition prepared by film-hydration and extrusion. We show that the self-assembly and content-release behavior of nanoscale polybutadiene-b-poly(ethylene oxide (PB-PEO/1-palmitoyl-2-oleoyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphatidylcholine (POPC hybrid phospholipid/block copolymer vesicles can be tuned by the mixing ratio of the amphiphiles. In brief, these hybrids may provide alternative tools for drug delivery purposes and molecular imaging/sensing applications and clearly open up new avenues for further investigation.

  20. Immunotherapeutic potential of extracellular vesicles

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bin eZhang


    Full Text Available Extracellular vesicles or EVs is a term that encompasses all classes of secreted lipid membrane vesicles. Despite being scientific novelties, EVs are gaining importance as a mediator of important physiological and pathological intercellular activities possibly through the transfer of their cargo of protein and RNA between cells. In particular, exosomes the currently best characterized EVs have been notable for their in vitro and in vivo immunomodulatory activities. Exosomes are nanometer-sized endosome-derived vesicles secreted by many cell types and their immunomodulatory potential is independent of their cell source. Besides immune cells such as dendritic cells, macrophages and T cells, cancer and stem cells also secrete immunologically active exosomes that could influence both physiological and pathological processes. The immunological activities of exosomes affect both innate and adaptive immunity and include antigen presentation, T cell activation, T cell polarisation to Tregs, immune suppression and anti-inflammation. As such, exosomes carry much immunotherapeutic potential as a therapeutic agent and a therapeutic target.

  1. Fusion of Nonionic Vesicles

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bulut, Sanja; Oskolkova, M. Z.; Schweins, R.


    We present an experimental study of vesicle fusion using light and neutron scattering to monitor fusion events. Vesicles are reproducibly formed with an extrusion procedure using an single amphiphile triethylene glycol mono-n-decyl ether in water. They show long-term stability for temperatures ar...... a barrier to fusion changing from 15 k(B)T at T = 26 degrees C to 10k(H) T at T = 35 degrees C. These results are compatible with the theoretical predictions using the stalk model of vesicle fusion....

  2. Protein Structure By FTIR Self-Deconvolution (United States)

    Byler, D. Michael; Susi, Heino


    Fourier self-deconvolution was applied to the peptide-carbonyl stretching vibration (amide I mode) of more than 20 globular proteins in deuterium oxide solution. This band, which usually exhibits little discernible fine structure, was thereby resolved into three to nine components. The individual components were assigned to protein segments consisting of extended chains, helices, and various turns and bends. The areas of the components were evaluated by Gauss-Newton iterative curve fitting with the assumption of Gaussian band shapes. Quantitative estimations regarding secondary structure were made by calculating the sum of the areas of the components asssociated with a particular conformation as a fraction of the total amide I band area. The results for helix content and for extended chain content are in good agreement with literature values obtained from X-ray data.

  3. RNA in extracellular vesicles. (United States)

    Kim, Kyoung Mi; Abdelmohsen, Kotb; Mustapic, Maja; Kapogiannis, Dimitrios; Gorospe, Myriam


    Cells release a range of membrane-enclosed extracellular vesicles (EVs) into the environment. Among them, exosomes and microvesicles (collectively measuring 40-1000 nm in diameter) carry proteins, signaling lipids, and nucleic acids from donor cells to recipient cells, and thus have been proposed to serve as intercellular mediators of communication. EVs transport cellular materials in many physiologic processes, including differentiation, stem cell homeostasis, immune responses, and neuronal signaling. EVs are also increasingly recognized as having a direct role in pathologies such as cancer and neurodegeneration. Accordingly, EVs have been the focus of intense investigation as biomarkers of disease, prognostic indicators, and even therapeutic tools. Here, we review the classes of RNAs present in EVs, both coding RNAs (messenger RNAs) and noncoding RNAs (long noncoding RNAs, microRNAs, and circular RNAs). The rising attention to EV-resident RNAs as biomarkers stems from the fact that RNAs can be detected at extremely low quantities using a number of methods. To illustrate the interest in EV biology, we discuss EV RNAs in cancer and neurodegeneration, two major age-associated disease processes. WIREs RNA 2017, 8:e1413. doi: 10.1002/wrna.1413 For further resources related to this article, please visit the WIREs website. Published 2017. This article is a U.S. Government work and is in the public domain in the USA.

  4. Protein Structure Prediction with Evolutionary Algorithms

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hart, W.E.; Krasnogor, N.; Pelta, D.A.; Smith, J.


    Evolutionary algorithms have been successfully applied to a variety of molecular structure prediction problems. In this paper we reconsider the design of genetic algorithms that have been applied to a simple protein structure prediction problem. Our analysis considers the impact of several algorithmic factors for this problem: the confirmational representation, the energy formulation and the way in which infeasible conformations are penalized, Further we empirically evaluated the impact of these factors on a small set of polymer sequences. Our analysis leads to specific recommendations for both GAs as well as other heuristic methods for solving PSP on the HP model.

  5. Thermophoretic migration of vesicles depends on mean temperature and head group chemistry (United States)

    Talbot, Emma L.; Kotar, Jurij; Parolini, Lucia; di Michele, Lorenzo; Cicuta, Pietro


    A number of colloidal systems, including polymers, proteins, micelles and hard spheres, have been studied in thermal gradients to observe and characterize their driven motion. Here we show experimentally the thermophoretic behaviour of unilamellar lipid vesicles, finding that mobility depends on the mean local temperature of the suspension and on the structure of the exposed polar lipid head groups. By tuning the temperature, vesicles can be directed towards hot or cold, forming a highly concentrated region. Binary mixtures of vesicles composed of different lipids can be segregated using thermophoresis, according to their head group. Our results demonstrate that thermophoresis enables robust and chemically specific directed motion of liposomes, which can be exploited in driven processes.

  6. Are specialized servers better at predicting protein structures than ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    This research study answers the question that technology is the best for predicting protein structures. Stand-alone software only depend on protein structure prediction algorithms, while web servers consult a number of other sources such as meta servers and protein data banks to produce a protein structure achieved ...

  7. Protein-mediated surface structuring in biomembranes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maggio B.


    Full Text Available The lipids and proteins of biomembranes exhibit highly dissimilar conformations, geometrical shapes, amphipathicity, and thermodynamic properties which constrain their two-dimensional molecular packing, electrostatics, and interaction preferences. This causes inevitable development of large local tensions that frequently relax into phase or compositional immiscibility along lateral and transverse planes of the membrane. On the other hand, these effects constitute the very codes that mediate molecular and structural changes determining and controlling the possibilities for enzymatic activity, apposition and recombination in biomembranes. The presence of proteins constitutes a major perturbing factor for the membrane sculpturing both in terms of its surface topography and dynamics. We will focus on some results from our group within this context and summarize some recent evidence for the active involvement of extrinsic (myelin basic protein, integral (Folch-Lees proteolipid protein and amphitropic (c-Fos and c-Jun proteins, as well as a membrane-active amphitropic phosphohydrolytic enzyme (neutral sphingomyelinase, in the process of lateral segregation and dynamics of phase domains, sculpturing of the surface topography, and the bi-directional modulation of the membrane biochemical reactivity.

  8. Hydrophobic interactions of sucralose with protein structures. (United States)

    Shukla, Nimesh; Pomarico, Enrico; Hecht, Cody J S; Taylor, Erika A; Chergui, Majed; Othon, Christina M


    Sucralose is a commonly employed artificial sweetener that appears to destabilize protein native structures. This is in direct contrast to the bio-preservative nature of its natural counterpart, sucrose, which enhances the stability of biomolecules against environmental stress. We have further explored the molecular interactions of sucralose as compared to sucrose to illuminate the origin of the differences in their bio-preservative efficacy. We show that the mode of interactions of sucralose and sucrose in bulk solution differ subtly through the use of hydration dynamics measurement and computational simulation. Sucralose does not appear to disturb the native state of proteins for moderate concentrations (sucralose appears to differ in its interactions with protein leading to the reduction of native state stability. This difference in interaction appears weak. We explored the difference in the preferential exclusion model using time-resolved spectroscopic techniques and observed that both molecules appear to be effective reducers of bulk hydration dynamics. However, the chlorination of sucralose appears to slightly enhance the hydrophobicity of the molecule, which reduces the preferential exclusion of sucralose from the protein-water interface. The weak interaction of sucralose with hydrophobic pockets on the protein surface differs from the behavior of sucrose. We experimentally followed up upon the extent of this weak interaction using isothermal titration calorimetry (ITC) measurements. We propose this as a possible origin for the difference in their bio-preservative properties. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  9. Extracellular Vesicles in Renal Diseases: More than Novel Biomarkers? (United States)

    Erdbrügger, Uta; Le, Thu H


    Extracellular vesicles from the urine and circulation have gained significant interest as potential diagnostic biomarkers in renal diseases. Urinary extracellular vesicles contain proteins from all sections of the nephron, whereas most studied circulating extracellular vesicles are derived from platelets, immune cells, and the endothelium. In addition to their diagnostic role as markers of kidney and vascular damage, extracellular vesicles may have functional significance in renal health and disease by facilitating communication between cells and protecting against kidney injury and bacterial infection in the urinary tract. However, the current understanding of extracellular vesicles has derived mostly from studies with very small numbers of patients or in vitro data. Moreover, accurate assessment of these vesicles remains a challenge, in part because of a lack of consensus in the methodologies to measure extracellular vesicles and the inability of most techniques to capture the entire size range of these vesicles. However, newer techniques and standardized protocols to improve the detection of extracellular vesicles are in development. A clearer understanding of the composition and biology of extracellular vesicles will provide insights into their pathophysiologic, diagnostic, and therapeutic roles. Copyright © 2016 by the American Society of Nephrology.

  10. PSIbase: a database of Protein Structural Interactome map (PSIMAP). (United States)

    Gong, Sungsam; Yoon, Giseok; Jang, Insoo; Bolser, Dan; Dafas, Panos; Schroeder, Michael; Choi, Hansol; Cho, Yoobok; Han, Kyungsook; Lee, Sunghoon; Choi, Hwanho; Lappe, Michael; Holm, Liisa; Kim, Sangsoo; Oh, Donghoon; Bhak, Jonghwa


    Protein Structural Interactome map (PSIMAP) is a global interaction map that describes domain-domain and protein-protein interaction information for known Protein Data Bank structures. It calculates the Euclidean distance to determine interactions between possible pairs of structural domains in proteins. PSIbase is a database and file server for protein structural interaction information calculated by the PSIMAP algorithm. PSIbase also provides an easy-to-use protein domain assignment module, interaction navigation and visual tools. Users can retrieve possible interaction partners of their proteins of interests if a significant homology assignment is made with their query sequences. and

  11. Human mammospheres secrete hormone-regulated active extracellular vesicles.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Esperanza Gonzalez

    Full Text Available Breast cancer is a leading cause of cancer-associated death worldwide. One of the most important prognostic factors for survival is the early detection of the disease. Recent studies indicate that extracellular vesicles may provide diagnostic information for cancer management. We demonstrate the secretion of extracellular vesicles by primary breast epithelial cells enriched for stem/progenitor cells cultured as mammospheres, in non-adherent conditions. Using a proteomic approach we identified proteins contained in these vesicles whose expression is affected by hormonal changes in the cellular environment. In addition, we showed that these vesicles are capable of promoting changes in expression levels of genes involved in epithelial-mesenchymal transition and stem cell markers. Our findings suggest that secreted extracellular vesicles could represent potential diagnostic and/or prognostic markers for breast cancer and support a role for extracellular vesicles in cancer progression.

  12. Gram-negative and Gram-positive bacterial extracellular vesicles. (United States)

    Kim, Ji Hyun; Lee, Jaewook; Park, Jaesung; Gho, Yong Song


    Like mammalian cells, Gram-negative and Gram-positive bacteria release nano-sized membrane vesicles into the extracellular environment either in a constitutive manner or in a regulated manner. These bacterial extracellular vesicles are spherical bilayered proteolipids enriched with bioactive proteins, lipids, nucleic acids, and virulence factors. Recent progress in this field supports the critical pathophysiological functions of these vesicles in both bacteria-bacteria and bacteria-host interactions. This review provides an overview of the current understanding on Gram-negative and Gram-positive bacterial extracellular vesicles, especially regarding the biogenesis, components, and functions in poly-species communities. We hope that this review will stimulate additional research in this emerging field of bacterial extracellular vesicles and contribute to the development of extracellular vesicle-based diagnostic tools and effective vaccines against pathogenic Gram-negative and Gram-positive bacteria. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  13. Tetrahymena gene encodes a protein that is homologous with the liver-specific F-antigen and associated with membranes of the Golgi apparatus and transport vesicles

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hummel, R; Nørgaard, P; Andreasen, P H


    of the Golgi apparatus and transport vesicles pointing to a role of TF-ag in membrane trafficking. Transcription of the TF-ag gene, as determined by run-on analyses, was only detectable in growing cells, and following transfer to starvation condition pre-existing TF-ag mRNA was rapidly degraded. The abundance...

  14. Protein mechanics: a route from structure to function

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)


    Why do proteins have such varied and complicated structures and how are these structures related to the functions that each protein must perform? Almost 50 years after the first protein structures were solved (Kendrew et al 1958; Perutz 1960), these questions are still very much part of molecular biology. While structures ...

  15. Fluconazole Transport into Candida albicans Secretory Vesicles by the Membrane Proteins Cdr1p, Cdr2p, and Mdr1p ▿ (United States)

    Basso, Luiz R.; Gast, Charles E.; Mao, Yuxin; Wong, Brian


    A major cause of azole resistance in Candida albicans is overexpression of CDR1, CDR2, and/or MDR1, which encode plasma membrane efflux pumps. To analyze the catalytic properties of these pumps, we used ACT1- and GAL1-regulated expression plasmids to overexpress CDR1, CDR2, or MDR1 in a C. albicans cdr1 cdr2 mdr1-null mutant. When the genes of interest were expressed, the resulting transformants were more resistant to multiple azole antifungals, and accumulated less [3H]fluconazole intracellularly, than empty-vector controls. Next, we used a GAL1-regulated dominant negative sec4 allele to cause cytoplasmic accumulation of post-Golgi secretory vesicles (PGVs), and we found that PGVs isolated from CDR1-, CDR2-, or MDR1-overexpressing cells accumulated much more [3H]fluconazole than did PGVs from empty-vector controls. The Kms (expressed in micromolar concentrations) and Vmaxs (expressed in picomoles per milligram of protein per minute), respectively, for [3H]fluconazole transport were 0.8 and 0.91 for Cdr1p, 4.3 and 0.52 for Cdr2p, and 3.5 and 0.59 for Mdr1p. [3H]fluconazole transport by Cdr1p and Cdr2p required ATP and was unaffected by carbonyl cyanide 3-chlorophenylhydrazone (CCCP), whereas [3H]fluconazole transport by Mdr1p did not require ATP and was inhibited by CCCP. [3H]fluconazole uptake by all 3 pumps was inhibited by all other azoles tested, with 50% inhibitory concentrations (IC50s; expressed as proportions of the [3H]fluconazole concentration) of 0.2 to 5.6 for Cdr1p, 0.3 to 3.1 for Cdr2p, and 0.3 to 3.1 for Mdr1p. The methods used in this study may also be useful for studying other plasma membrane transporters in C. albicans and other medically important fungi. PMID:20348384

  16. Cellular phenotype and extracellular vesicles: basic and clinical considerations. (United States)

    Quesenberry, Peter J; Goldberg, Laura R; Aliotta, Jason M; Dooner, Mark S; Pereira, Mandy G; Wen, Sicheng; Camussi, Giovanni


    Early work on platelet and erythrocyte vesicles interpreted the phenomena as a discard of material from cells. Subsequently, vesicles were studied as possible vaccines and, most recently, there has been a focus on the effects of vesicles on cell fate. Recent studies have indicated that extracellular vesicles, previously referred to as microvesicles or exosomes, have the capacity to change the phenotype of neighboring cells. Extensive work has shown that vesicles derived from either the lung or liver can enter bone marrow cells (this is a prerequisite) and alter their fate toward that of the originating liver and lung tissue. Lung vesicles interacted with bone marrow cells result in the bone marrow cells expressing surfactants A-D, Clara cell protein, and aquaporin-5 mRNA. In a similar vein, liver-derived vesicles induce albumin mRNA in target marrow cells. The vesicles contain protein, mRNA, microRNA, and noncoding RNA and variably some DNA. This genetic package is delivered to cells and alters the phenotype. Further studies have shown that initially the altered phenotype is due to the transfer of mRNA and a transcriptional modulator, but long-term epigenetic changes are induced through transfer of a transcriptional factor, and the mRNA is rapidly degraded in the cell. Studies on the capacity of vesicles to restore injured tissue have been quite informative. Mesenchymal stem cell-derived vesicles are able to reverse the injury to the damaged liver and kidney. Other studies have shown that mesenchymal stem cell-derived vesicles can reverse radiation toxicity of bone marrow stem cells. Extracellular vesicles offer an intriguing strategy for treating a number of diseases characterized by tissue injury.

  17. Quaternion maps of global protein structure. (United States)

    Hanson, Andrew J; Thakur, Sidharth


    The geometric structures of proteins are vital to the understanding of biochemical interactions. However, there is much yet to be understood about the spatial arrangements of the chains of amino acids making up any given protein. In particular, while conventional analysis tools like the Ramachandran plot supply some insight into the local relative orientation of pairs of amino acid residues, they provide little information about the global relative orientations of large groups of residues. We apply quaternion maps to families of coordinate frames defined naturally by amino acid residue structures as a way to expose global spatial relationships among residues within proteins. The resulting visualizations enable comparisons of absolute orientations as well as relative orientations, and thus generalize the framework of the Ramachandran plot. There are a variety of possible quaternion frames and visual representation strategies that can be chosen, and very complex quaternion maps can result. Just as Ramachandran plots are useful for addressing particular questions and not others, quaternion tools have characteristic domains of relevance. In particular, quaternion maps show great potential for answering specific questions about global residue alignment in crystallographic data and statistical orientation properties in Nuclear Magnetic Resonance (NMR) data that are very difficult to treat by other methods. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  18. Evidence of Extracellular Vesicles Biogenesis and Release in Mouse Embryonic Stem Cells. (United States)

    Cruz, Lilian; Arevalo Romero, Jenny Andrea; Brandão Prado, Mariana; Santos, Tiago G; Hohmuth Lopes, Marilene


    Extracellular vesicles (EVs) released by mouse embryonic stem cells (mESCs) are considered a source of bioactive molecules that modulate their microenvironment by acting on intercellular communication. Either intracellular endosomal machinery or their derived EVs have been considered a relevant system of signal circuits processing. Herein, we show that these features are found in mESCs. Ultrastructural analysis revealed structures and organelles of the endosomal system such as coated pits and endocytosis-related vesicles, prominent rough endoplasmic reticulum and Golgi apparatus, and multivesicular bodies (MVBs) containing either few or many intraluminal vesicles (ILVs) that could be released as exosomes to extracellular milieu. Besides, budding vesicles shed from the plasma membrane to the extracellular space is suggestive of microvesicle biogenesis in mESCs. mESCs and mouse blastocyst express specific markers of the Endosomal Sorting Complex Required for Transport (ESCRT) system. Ultrastructural analysis and Nanoparticle Tracking Analysis (NTA) of isolated EVs revealed a heterogeneous population of exosomes and microvesicles released by mESCs. These vesicles contain Wnt10b and the Notch ligand Delta-like 4 (DLL4) and also the co-chaperone stress inducible protein 1 (STI1) and its partner Hsp90. Wnt10b and Dll4 colocalize with EVs biogenesis markers in mESCs. Overall, the present study supports the function of the mESCs endocytic network and their EVs as players in stem cell biology.

  19. Hierarchical unilamellar vesicles of controlled compositional heterogeneity.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maik Hadorn

    Full Text Available Eukaryotic life contains hierarchical vesicular architectures (i.e. organelles that are crucial for material production and trafficking, information storage and access, as well as energy production. In order to perform specific tasks, these compartments differ among each other in their membrane composition and their internal cargo and also differ from the cell membrane and the cytosol. Man-made structures that reproduce this nested architecture not only offer a deeper understanding of the functionalities and evolution of organelle-bearing eukaryotic life but also allow the engineering of novel biomimetic technologies. Here, we show the newly developed vesicle-in-water-in-oil emulsion transfer preparation technique to result in giant unilamellar vesicles internally compartmentalized by unilamellar vesicles of different membrane composition and internal cargo, i.e. hierarchical unilamellar vesicles of controlled compositional heterogeneity. The compartmentalized giant unilamellar vesicles were subsequently isolated by a separation step exploiting the heterogeneity of the membrane composition and the encapsulated cargo. Due to the controlled, efficient, and technically straightforward character of the new preparation technique, this study allows the hierarchical fabrication of compartmentalized giant unilamellar vesicles of controlled compositional heterogeneity and will ease the development of eukaryotic cell mimics that resemble their natural templates as well as the fabrication of novel multi-agent drug delivery systems for combination therapies and complex artificial microreactors.

  20. Extracellular vesicles provide a means for tissue crosstalk during exercise

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Whitham, Martin; Parker, Benjamin L; Friedrichsen, Martin


    Exercise stimulates the release of molecules into the circulation, supporting the concept that inter-tissue signaling proteins are important mediators of adaptations to exercise. Recognizing that many circulating proteins are packaged in extracellular vesicles (EVs), we employed quantitative...... vesicles. Pulse-chase and intravital imaging experiments suggested EVs liberated by exercise have a propensity to localize in the liver and can transfer their protein cargo. Moreover, by employing arteriovenous balance studies across the contracting human limb, we identified several novel candidate...

  1. Extracellular vesicles in cardiovascular disease: are they Jedi or Sith? (United States)

    Osteikoetxea, Xabier; Németh, Andrea; Sódar, Barbara W; Vukman, Krisztina V; Buzás, Edit Irén


    In the recent past, extracellular vesicles have become recognized as important players in cell biology and biomedicine. Extracellular vesicles, including exosomes, microvesicles and apoptotic bodies, are phospholipid bilayer-enclosed structures found to be secreted by most if not all cells. Extracellular vesicle secretion represents a universal and highly conserved active cellular function. Importantly, increasing evidence supports that extracellular vesicles may serve as biomarkers and therapeutic targets or tools in human diseases. Cardiovascular disease undoubtedly represents one of the most intensely studied and rapidly growing areas of the extracellular vesicle field. However, in different studies related to cardiovascular disease, extracellular vesicles have been shown to exert diverse and sometimes discordant biological effects. Therefore, it might seem a puzzle whether these vesicles are in fact beneficial or detrimental to cardiovascular health. In this review we provide a general introduction to extracellular vesicles and an overview of their biological roles in cardiovascular diseases. Furthermore, we aim to untangle the various reasons for the observed discrepancy in biological effects of extracellular vesicles in cardiovascular diseases. To this end, we provide several examples that demonstrate that the observed functional diversity is in fact due to inherent differences among various types of extracellular vesicles. © 2016 The Authors. The Journal of Physiology © 2016 The Physiological Society.

  2. General overview on structure prediction of twilight-zone proteins. (United States)

    Khor, Bee Yin; Tye, Gee Jun; Lim, Theam Soon; Choong, Yee Siew


    Protein structure prediction from amino acid sequence has been one of the most challenging aspects in computational structural biology despite significant progress in recent years showed by critical assessment of protein structure prediction (CASP) experiments. When experimentally determined structures are unavailable, the predictive structures may serve as starting points to study a protein. If the target protein consists of homologous region, high-resolution (typically protein (also known as twilight-zone protein, sequence identity with available templates is less than 30%), the protein structure prediction has to be initiated from scratch. Traditionally, twilight-zone proteins can be predicted via threading or ab initio method. Based on the current trend, combination of different methods brings an improved success in the prediction of twilight-zone proteins. In this mini review, the methods, progresses and challenges for the prediction of twilight-zone proteins were discussed.

  3. The puzzle of chloroplast vesicle transport – involvement of GTPases

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sazzad eKarim


    Full Text Available In the cytosol of plant cells vesicle transport occurs via secretory pathways among the endoplasmic reticulum (ER network, Golgi bodies, secretory granules, endosome and plasma membrane. Three systems transfer lipids, proteins and other important molecules through aqueous spaces to membrane-enclosed compartments, via vesicles that bud from donor membranes, being coated and uncoated before tethered and fused with acceptor membranes. In addition, molecular, biochemical and ultrastructural evidence indicates presence of a vesicle transport system in chloroplasts. Little is known about the protein components of this system. However, as chloroplasts harbour the photosynthetic apparatus that ultimately supports most organisms on the planet, close attention to their pathways is warranted. This may also reveal novel diversification and/or distinct solutions to the problems posed by the targeted intra-cellular trafficking of important molecules. To date two homologues to well-known yeast cytosolic vesicle transport proteins, CPSAR1 and CPRabA5e, have been shown to have roles in chloroplast vesicle transport, both being GTPases. Bioinformatic data indicate that several homologues of cytosolic vesicle transport system components are putatively chloroplast-localized and in addition other proteins have been implicated to participate in chloroplast vesicle transport, including vesicle-inducing protein in plastids 1 (VIPP1, thylakoid formation 1 (THF1, snowy cotyledon 2/cotyledon chloroplast biogenesis factor (SCO2/CYO1, curvature thylakoid 1 (CURT1 proteins, and a dynamin like GTPase FZO-like (FZL protein. Several putative potential cargo proteins have also been identified, including building blocks of the photosynthetic apparatus. Here we discuss details of the largely unknown putative chloroplast vesicle transport system, focusing on GTPase-related components.

  4. Synonymous codon usage in different protein secondary structural ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)



    . The relationship between the synonymous codon usage and different protein secondary structural classes were investigated using 401 Homo sapiens proteins extracted from Protein Data Bank (PDB). A simple Chi-square ...

  5. Fundamental Studies of Assembly and Mechanical Properties of Lipid Bilayer Membranes and Unilamellar Vesicles (United States)

    Wang, Xi

    This dissertation work focuses on: (i) obtaining a phospholipid bilayer membrane (LBM)/conducting electrode system with low defect density and optimized rigidity; (ii) investigating vesicle stability and mechanical properties. LBM is a simplified yet representative cell membrane model. LBMs assembled on conductive surfaces can probe protein-LBM interactions activities electrochemically. Sterically stabilized vesicles could be used as cell models or for drug delivery. The main challenges for LBM assembly on gold are vesicles do not spontaneously rupture to form LBMs on gold and the roughness of the gold substrate has considerable influence on molecular film defect density. In this study, 1-palmitoyl-2-oleoyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphocholine (POPC) vesicles were functionalized with 1,2-distearoyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphoethanolamine- N-poly(ethylene glycol)-2000-N-[3-(2-pyridyldithio)propionate] (DSPE-PEG-PDP) to yield stable LBMs on gold without surface modification. A template-stripping method was used to obtain atomically flat and pristine gold surfaces. The critical force to initiate vesicle rupture decreases with increasing DSPE-PEG-PDP concentration, indicating that gold-thiolate bonding between DSPE-PEG-PDP and gold substrates promotes LBM formation. Mechanical properties of LBMs and vesicles were investigated as a function of DSPE-PEG-PDP concentration via Atomic Force Microscopy. The elastic moduli of LBMs were determined with DSPE-PEG-PDP concentration ranging from 0mol% to 24mol% and were found to depend on PEG chain conformation. Incorporating DSPE-PEG-PDP molecules with PEG in mushroom conformation results in a decrease of LBM rigidity, while incorporating PEG in brush conformation leads to LBM stiffening. Contrarily, mechanical properties of functionalized vesicles did not vary significantly by varying DSPE-PEG-PDP concentration. LBM with tunable rigidity by adjusting DSPE-PEG-PDP concentration provides a versatile cell membrane model for studying protein or

  6. Biochemical and morphological characterization of light and heavy sarcoplasmic reticulum vesicles. Volume I

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Campbell, Kevin Peter [Univ. of Rochester, NY (United States)


    Light (30 to 32.5% sucrose) and heavy (38.5 to 42% sucrose) sarcoplasmic reticulum vesicles (LSR, HSR) were isolated from rabbit leg muscle. They were then diluted and washed with sucrose or KCl and referred to as sucrose or KCl washed vesicles. Thin-section electron microscopy of LSR vesicles reveals empty vesicles of various sizes and shapes where as the HSR vesicles appear as rounded vesicles of uniform size filled with electron dense material. The LSR consists of predominantly Ca2+ + Mg2+ ATPase (80 to 90%), a small amount of the high affinity Ca binding protein (5%), and a 5000 dalton proteolipid. The sucrose HSR vesicles contain the Ca2+ + Mg2+ ATPase (50%), Calsequestrin (25%), high affinity Ca binding protein (5%), one extrinsic 34,000 dalton protein (3%), one intrinsic 30,000 dalton protein (3%), a 9000 dalton proteolipid, and a 5000 dalton proteolipid. The sucrose--washed HSR vesicles contain greater than three times the calcium content of the sucrose washed LSR vesicles where as the KCl--washed vesicles contain less than 15 nmoles Ca2+ mg of protein each. The light and heavy sarcoplasmic reticulum vesicles were both able to accumulate calcium in the presence of ATP. Exchange of methanesulfonate for chloride resulted in the release of calcium from both the light and heavy SR vesicles. Sucrose causes a slight inhibition of chloride--induced calcium release from the heavy SR vesicles but it greatly reduces the release of calcium from the light SR vesicles. Sodium dantrolene (20 uM) has no effect on the release of calcium from the light SR vesicles but it inhibits the release of calcium from the heavy SR vesicles. The results indicate that the chloride--induced release of calcium may be acting by two mechanisms, osmotic swelling and depolarization.

  7. Determination of Cell Doubling Times from the Return-on-Investment Time of Photosynthetic Vesicles Based on Atomic Detail Structural Models. (United States)

    Hitchcock, Andrew; Hunter, C Neil; Sener, Melih


    Cell doubling times of the purple bacterium Rhodobacter sphaeroides during photosynthetic growth are determined experimentally and computationally as a function of illumination. For this purpose, energy conversion processes in an intracytoplasmic membrane vesicle, the chromatophore, are described based on an atomic detail structural model. The cell doubling time and its illumination dependence are computed in terms of the return-on-investment (ROI) time of the chromatophore, determined computationally from the ATP production rate, and the mass ratio of chromatophores in the cell, determined experimentally from whole cell absorbance spectra. The ROI time is defined as the time it takes to produce enough ATP to pay for the construction of another chromatophore. The ROI time of the low light-growth chromatophore is 4.5-2.6 h for a typical illumination range of 10-100 μmol photons m -2 s -1 , respectively, with corresponding cell doubling times of 8.2-3.9 h. When energy expenditure is considered as a currency, the benefit-to-cost ratio computed for the chromatophore as an energy harvesting device is 2-8 times greater than for photovoltaic and fossil fuel-based energy solutions and the corresponding ROI times are approximately 3-4 orders of magnitude shorter for the chromatophore than for synthetic systems.

  8. First demonstration of transmissible spongiform encephalopathy-associated prion protein (PrPTSE) in extracellular vesicles from plasma of mice infected with mouse-adapted variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease by in vitro amplification. (United States)

    Saá, Paula; Yakovleva, Oksana; de Castro, Jorge; Vasilyeva, Irina; De Paoli, Silvia H; Simak, Jan; Cervenakova, Larisa


    The development of variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (vCJD) in three recipients of non-leukoreduced red blood cells from asymptomatic donors who subsequently developed the disease has confirmed existing concerns about the possible spread of transmissible spongiform encephalopathies (TSEs) via blood products. In addition, the presence of disease-associated misfolded prion protein (PrP(TSE)), generally associated with infectivity, has been demonstrated in the blood of vCJD patients. However, its origin and distribution in this biological fluid are still unknown. Various studies have identified cellular prion protein (PrP(C)) among the protein cargo in human blood-circulating extracellular vesicles released from endothelial cells and platelets, and exosomes isolated from the conditioned media of TSE-infected cells have caused the disease when injected into experimental mice. In this study, we demonstrate the detection of PrP(TSE) in extracellular vesicles isolated from plasma samples collected during the preclinical and clinical phases of the disease from mice infected with mouse-adapted vCJD and confirm the presence of the exosomal marker Hsp70 in these preparations. © 2014 by The American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Inc.

  9. Towards optimal alignment of protein structure distance matrices

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    I. Wohlers (Inken); F.S. Domingues; G.W. Klau (Gunnar)


    htmlabstractMOTIVATION: Structural alignments of proteins are important for identification of structural similarities, homology detection and functional annotation. The structural alignment problem is well studied and computationally difficult. Many different scoring schemes for structural

  10. Soluble monomers, dimers and HLA-G-expressing extracellular vesicles: the three dimensions of structural complexity to use HLA-G as a clinical biomarker. (United States)

    Nardi, F da Silva; König, L; Wagner, B; Giebel, B; Santos Manvailer, L F; Rebmann, V


    The HLA-G molecule belongs to the family of nonclassical human leukocyte antigen (HLA) class I. At variance to classical HLA class I, HLA-G displays (i) a low number of nucleotide variations within the coding region, (ii) a high structural diversity, (iii) a restricted peptide repertoire, (iv) a limited tissue distribution and (v) strong immune-suppressive properties. The physiological HLA-G surface expression is restricted to the maternal-fetal interface and to immune-privileged adult tissues. Soluble forms of HLA-G (sHLA-G) are detectable in various body fluids. Cellular activation and pathological processes are associated with an aberrant or a neo-expression of HLA-G/sHLA-G. Functionally, HLA-G and its secreted forms are considered to be key players in the induction of short- and long-term tolerance. Thus, its unique expression profile and tolerance-inducing functions render HLA-G/sHLA-G an attractive biomarker to monitor the systemic health/disease status and disease activity/progression for clinical approaches in disease management and treatments. Here, we place emphasis on (i) the current status of the tolerance-inducing functions by HLA-G/sHLA-G, (ii) the current complexity to implement this molecule as a meaningful clinical biomarker regarding the three dimensions of structural diversity (monomers, dimers and HLA-G-expressing extracellular vesicles) with its functional implications, and (iii) novel and future approaches to detect and quantify sHLA-G structures and functions. © 2016 John Wiley & Sons A/S. Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  11. Intracellular transport proteins: classification, structure and function of kinesins

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Agnieszka Chudy


    Full Text Available Correct cell functioning, division and morphogenesis rely on efficient intracellular transport. Apart from dyneins and myosins, kinesins are the main proteins responsible for intracellular movement. Kinesins are a large, diverse group of motor proteins, which based on phylogenetic similarity were classified into fourteen families. Among these families, due to the location of their motor domains, three groups have been characterized: N-, C- and M-kinesin. As molecular motors, kinesins transport various molecules and vesicles mainly towards the microtubule plus end (from the cell body participating in anterograde transport, although there are also kinesins involved in retrograde transport (C-kinesins. Kinesins are also involved in spindle formation, chromosome segregation, and spermatogenesis. Because of their great importance for the correct functioning of cells, mutations in kinesin coding genes may lead to such neurodegenerative diseases as dominant hereditary spastic paraplegia or Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease.

  12. Structure based alignment and clustering of proteins (STRALCP) (United States)

    Zemla, Adam T.; Zhou, Carol E.; Smith, Jason R.; Lam, Marisa W.


    Disclosed are computational methods of clustering a set of protein structures based on local and pair-wise global similarity values. Pair-wise local and global similarity values are generated based on pair-wise structural alignments for each protein in the set of protein structures. Initially, the protein structures are clustered based on pair-wise local similarity values. The protein structures are then clustered based on pair-wise global similarity values. For each given cluster both a representative structure and spans of conserved residues are identified. The representative protein structure is used to assign newly-solved protein structures to a group. The spans are used to characterize conservation and assign a "structural footprint" to the cluster.

  13. NMR Studies of Protein Structure and Dynamics (United States)

    Li, Xiang

    Available from UMI in association with The British Library. Requires signed TDF. This thesis describes applications of 2D homonuclear NMR techniques to the study of protein structure and dynamics in solution. The sequential assignments for the 3G-residue bovine Pancreatic Polypeptide (bPP) are reported. The secondary and tertiary structure of bPP in solution has been determined from experimental NMR data. bPP has a well defined C-terminal alpha-helix and a rather ordered conformation in the N-terminal region. The two segments are joined by a turn which is poorly defined. Both the N- and the C-terminus are highly disordered. The mean solution structure of bPP is remarkably similar to the crystal structure of avian Pancreatic Polypeptide (aPP). The average conformations of most side-chains from the alpha-helix of bPP in solution are closely similar to those of aPP in the crystalline state. A large number of side-chains of bPP, however, show significant conformational averaging in solution. The 89-residue kringle domain of urokinase from both human and recombinant sources has been investigated. Sequential assignments based primarily on the recombinant sample and the determination of secondary structure are presented. Two helices have been identified; one of these corresponds to that reported for t-PA kringle 2, but does not exist in other kringles with known structures. The second helix is thus far unique to the urokinase kringle. Three antiparallel beta-sheets and three tight turns have also been identified. The tertiary fold of the molecule conforms broadly to that found for other kringles. Three regions in the urokinase kringle exhibit high local mobility; one of these, the Pro56-Pro62 segment, forms part of the proposed binding site. The other two mobile regions are the N- and C-termini which are likely to form the interfaces between the kringle and the other two domains (EGF and protease) in urokinase. The differential dynamic behaviours of the kringle and

  14. Quantum chemical studies of protein structure (United States)

    Oldfield, Eric


    Quantum chemical methods now permit the prediction of many spectroscopic observables in proteins and related model systems, in addition to electrostatic properties, which are found to be in excellent accord with those determined from experiment. I discuss the developments over the past decade in these areas, including predictions of nuclear magnetic resonance chemical shifts, chemical shielding tensors, scalar couplings and hyperfine (contact) shifts, the isomer shifts and quadrupole splittings in Mössbauer spectroscopy, molecular energies and conformations, as well as a range of electrostatic properties, such as charge densities, the curvatures, Laplacians and Hessians of the charge density, electrostatic potentials, electric field gradients and electrostatic field effects. The availability of structure/spectroscopic correlations from quantum chemistry provides a basis for using numerous spectroscopic observables in determining aspects of protein structure, in determining electrostatic properties which are not readily accessible from experiment, as well as giving additional confidence in the use of these techniques to investigate questions about chemical bonding and chemical reactions. PMID:16147526

  15. Protein flexibility in the light of structural alphabets

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pierrick eCraveur


    Full Text Available Protein structures are valuable tools to understand protein function. Nonetheless, proteins are often considered as rigid macromolecules while their structures exhibit specific flexibility, which is essential to complete their functions. Analyses of protein structures and dynamics are often performed with a simplified three-state description, i.e. the classical secondary structures. . More precise and complete description of protein backbone conformation can be obtained using libraries of small protein fragments that are able to approximate every part of protein structures. These libraries, called structural alphabets (SAs, have been widely used in structure analysis field, from definition of ligand binding sites to superimposition of protein structures. SAs are also well suited to analyze the dynamics of protein structures.Here, we review innovative approaches that investigate protein flexibility based on SAs description. Coupled to various sources of experimental data (e.g. B-factor and computational methodology (e.g. Molecular Dynamic simulation, SAs turn out to be powerful tools to analyze protein dynamics, e.g. to examine allosteric mechanisms in large set of structures in complexes, to identify order/disorder transition. SAs were also shown to be quite efficient to predict protein flexibility from amino-acid sequence. Finally, in this review, we exemplify the interest of SAs for studying flexibility with different cases of proteins implicated in pathologies and diseases.

  16. Computational Methods for Protein Structure Prediction and Modeling Volume 2: Structure Prediction

    CERN Document Server

    Xu, Ying; Liang, Jie


    Volume 2 of this two-volume sequence focuses on protein structure prediction and includes protein threading, De novo methods, applications to membrane proteins and protein complexes, structure-based drug design, as well as structure prediction as a systems problem. A series of appendices review the biological and chemical basics related to protein structure, computer science for structural informatics, and prerequisite mathematics and statistics.

  17. Structure-based druggability assessment of the mammalian structural proteome with inclusion of light protein flexibility.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kathryn A Loving


    Full Text Available Advances reported over the last few years and the increasing availability of protein crystal structure data have greatly improved structure-based druggability approaches. However, in practice, nearly all druggability estimation methods are applied to protein crystal structures as rigid proteins, with protein flexibility often not directly addressed. The inclusion of protein flexibility is important in correctly identifying the druggability of pockets that would be missed by methods based solely on the rigid crystal structure. These include cryptic pockets and flexible pockets often found at protein-protein interaction interfaces. Here, we apply an approach that uses protein modeling in concert with druggability estimation to account for light protein backbone movement and protein side-chain flexibility in protein binding sites. We assess the advantages and limitations of this approach on widely-used protein druggability sets. Applying the approach to all mammalian protein crystal structures in the PDB results in identification of 69 proteins with potential druggable cryptic pockets.

  18. Structure-based druggability assessment of the mammalian structural proteome with inclusion of light protein flexibility. (United States)

    Loving, Kathryn A; Lin, Andy; Cheng, Alan C


    Advances reported over the last few years and the increasing availability of protein crystal structure data have greatly improved structure-based druggability approaches. However, in practice, nearly all druggability estimation methods are applied to protein crystal structures as rigid proteins, with protein flexibility often not directly addressed. The inclusion of protein flexibility is important in correctly identifying the druggability of pockets that would be missed by methods based solely on the rigid crystal structure. These include cryptic pockets and flexible pockets often found at protein-protein interaction interfaces. Here, we apply an approach that uses protein modeling in concert with druggability estimation to account for light protein backbone movement and protein side-chain flexibility in protein binding sites. We assess the advantages and limitations of this approach on widely-used protein druggability sets. Applying the approach to all mammalian protein crystal structures in the PDB results in identification of 69 proteins with potential druggable cryptic pockets.

  19. Prostasome-like vesicles stimulate acrosome reaction of pig spermatozoa

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marcianò Vito


    Full Text Available Abstract Background The presence of small membranous particles characterizes the male genital fluids of different mammalian species. The influence of semen vesicles, denominated prostasomes, on sperm functional properties has been well documented in humans, but their biological activity is scarcely known in other species. The present work investigated prostasome-like vesicles in pig semen for their ability to interact with spermatozoa and to affect acrosome reaction. Methods Prostasome-like vesicles have been isolated from pig seminal plasma by high-speed centrifugation and Sephadex G-200 gel chromatography. Morphology of purified vesicles has been checked by scanning electron microscopy while their protein pattern has been investigated by SDS-PAGE. Then prostasome- like vesicles have been incubated with pig spermatozoa and their ability to interact with sperm has been tested by the aminopeptidase assay. In addition, the efficiency of vesicles to influence the acrosome reaction has been investigated by assessing the sperm acrosomal status by the PI/FITC-PNA (propidium iodide/fluorescein isothiocyanate-labeled peanut agglutinin stainings. Results Purified vesicles revealed a complex protein pattern with the occurrence of bands in the high, medium and low molecular weight range. However, the two major bands were observed at ~90 kDa and ~60 kDa. A vesicle-mediated transfer of aminopeptidase to sperm cells has been also detected. Furthermore, a significant increase of acrosome reaction extent has been revealed in spermatozoa incubated with prostasome-like vesicles in comparison to control sperm. Conclusion This is the first report demonstrating that pig prostasome-like vesicles are able, in vitro, to interact with spermatozoa and to stimulate the acrosome reaction. These findings lead to hypothesize a transfer of molecules from vesicles to sperm membrane, thus sensitizing male gametes to undergo the acrosome reaction

  20. Searching protein 3-D structures for optimal structure alignment using intelligent algorithms and data structures. (United States)

    Novosád, Tomáš; Snášel, Václav; Abraham, Ajith; Yang, Jack Y


    In this paper, we present a novel algorithm for measuring protein similarity based on their 3-D structure (protein tertiary structure). The algorithm used a suffix tree for discovering common parts of main chains of all proteins appearing in the current research collaboratory for structural bioinformatics protein data bank (PDB). By identifying these common parts, we build a vector model and use some classical information retrieval (IR) algorithms based on the vector model to measure the similarity between proteins--all to all protein similarity. For the calculation of protein similarity, we use term frequency × inverse document frequency ( tf × idf ) term weighing schema and cosine similarity measure. The goal of this paper is to introduce new protein similarity metric based on suffix trees and IR methods. Whole current PDB database was used to demonstrate very good time complexity of the algorithm as well as high precision. We have chosen the structural classification of proteins (SCOP) database for verification of the precision of our algorithm because it is maintained primarily by humans. The next success of this paper would be the ability to determine SCOP categories of proteins not included in the latest version of the SCOP database (v. 1.75) with nearly 100% precision.

  1. Structural determination of intact proteins using mass spectrometry (United States)

    Kruppa, Gary [San Francisco, CA; Schoeniger, Joseph S [Oakland, CA; Young, Malin M [Livermore, CA


    The present invention relates to novel methods of determining the sequence and structure of proteins. Specifically, the present invention allows for the analysis of intact proteins within a mass spectrometer. Therefore, preparatory separations need not be performed prior to introducing a protein sample into the mass spectrometer. Also disclosed herein are new instrumental developments for enhancing the signal from the desired modified proteins, methods for producing controlled protein fragments in the mass spectrometer, eliminating complex microseparations, and protein preparatory chemical steps necessary for cross-linking based protein structure determination.Additionally, the preferred method of the present invention involves the determination of protein structures utilizing a top-down analysis of protein structures to search for covalent modifications. In the preferred method, intact proteins are ionized and fragmented within the mass spectrometer.

  2. Lubrication synergy: Mixture of hyaluronan and dipalmitoylphosphatidylcholine (DPPC) vesicles

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Raj, Akanksha; Wang, Min; Zander, Thomas


    with the outer shell of dipalmitoylphophatidylcholine (DPPC) vesicles in bulk solution. Further, we follow adsorption to silica from mixed hyaluronan/DPPC vesicle solution by Quartz Crystal Microbalance with Dissipation measurements. Atomic Force Microscope imaging visualises the adsorbed layer structure...... and partly removed from between the surfaces under high loads. These layers offer very low friction coefficient (

  3. The freezing process of small lipid vesicles at molecular resolution

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Risselada, H. Jelger; Marrink, Siewert J.


    At present very little is known about the kinetic barriers which a small vesicle will face during the transformation from the liquid-crystalline to the gel phase, and what the structure of frozen vesicles looks like at the molecular level. The formation of gel domains in the strongly curved bilayer

  4. Protein structure prediction using basin-hopping (United States)

    Prentiss, Michael C.; Wales, David J.; Wolynes, Peter G.


    Associative memory Hamiltonian structure prediction potentials are not overly rugged, thereby suggesting their landscapes are like those of actual proteins. In the present contribution we show how basin-hopping global optimization can identify low-lying minima for the corresponding mildly frustrated energy landscapes. For small systems the basin-hopping algorithm succeeds in locating both lower minima and conformations closer to the experimental structure than does molecular dynamics with simulated annealing. For large systems the efficiency of basin-hopping decreases for our initial implementation, where the steps consist of random perturbations to the Cartesian coordinates. We implemented umbrella sampling using basin-hopping to further confirm when the global minima are reached. We have also improved the energy surface by employing bioinformatic techniques for reducing the roughness or variance of the energy surface. Finally, the basin-hopping calculations have guided improvements in the excluded volume of the Hamiltonian, producing better structures. These results suggest a novel and transferable optimization scheme for future energy function development.

  5. Biological properties of extracellular vesicles and their physiological functions

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Yáñez-Mó, María; Siljander, Pia R-M; Andreu, Zoraida; Zavec, Apolonija Bedina; Borràs, Francesc E; Buzas, Edit I; Buzas, Krisztina; Casal, Enriqueta; Cappello, Francesco; Carvalho, Joana; Colás, Eva; Cordeiro-da Silva, Anabela; Fais, Stefano; Falcon-Perez, Juan M; Ghobrial, Irene M; Giebel, Bernd; Gimona, Mario; Graner, Michael; Gursel, Ihsan; Gursel, Mayda; Heegaard, Niels H H; Hendrix, An; Kierulf, Peter; Kokubun, Katsutoshi; Kosanovic, Maja; Kralj-Iglic, Veronika; Krämer-Albers, Eva-Maria; Laitinen, Saara; Lässer, Cecilia; Lener, Thomas; Ligeti, Erzsébet; Linē, Aija; Lipps, Georg; Llorente, Alicia; Lötvall, Jan; Manček-Keber, Mateja; Marcilla, Antonio; Mittelbrunn, Maria; Nazarenko, Irina; Nolte-'t Hoen, Esther N M; Nyman, Tuula A; O'Driscoll, Lorraine; Olivan, Mireia; Oliveira, Carla; Pállinger, Éva; Del Portillo, Hernando A; Reventós, Jaume; Rigau, Marina; Rohde, Eva; Sammar, Marei; Sánchez-Madrid, Francisco; Santarém, N; Schallmoser, Katharina; Ostenfeld, Marie Stampe; Stoorvogel, Willem|info:eu-repo/dai/nl/074352385; Stukelj, Roman; Van der Grein, Susanne G|info:eu-repo/dai/nl/412755211; Vasconcelos, M Helena; Wauben, Marca H M|info:eu-repo/dai/nl/112675735; De Wever, Olivier


    In the past decade, extracellular vesicles (EVs) have been recognized as potent vehicles of intercellular communication, both in prokaryotes and eukaryotes. This is due to their capacity to transfer proteins, lipids and nucleic acids, thereby influencing various physiological and pathological

  6. Compartmentalization and Transport in Synthetic Vesicles

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christine eSchmitt


    Full Text Available Nano-scale vesicles have become a popular tool in life sciences. Besides liposomes that are generated from phospholipids of natural origin, polymersomes fabricated of synthetic block copolymers enjoy increasing popularity, as they represent more versatile membrane building blocks that can be selected based on their specific physicochemical properties, like permeability, stability or chemical reactivity.In this review, we focus on the application of simple and nested artificial vesicles in synthetic biology. First, we provide an introduction into the utilization of multi-compartmented vesosomes as compartmentalized nano-scale bioreactors. In the bottom-up development of protocells from vesicular nano-reactors, the specific exchange of pathway intermediates across compartment boundaries represents a bottleneck for future studies. To date, most compartmented bioreactors rely on unspecific exchange of substrates and products. This is either based on changes in permeability of the coblock polymer shell by physicochemical triggers or by the incorporation of unspecific porin proteins into the vesicle membrane. Since the incorporation of membrane transport proteins into simple and nested artificial vesicles offers the potential for specific exchange of substances between subcompartments, it opens new vistas in the design of protocells. Therefore we devote the main part of the review to summarize the technical advances in the use of phospholipids and block copolymers for the reconstitution of membrane proteins.

  7. Membrane protein structures without crystals, by single particle electron cryomicroscopy. (United States)

    Vinothkumar, Kutti R


    It is an exciting period in membrane protein structural biology with a number of medically important protein structures determined at a rapid pace. However, two major hurdles still remain in the structural biology of membrane proteins. One is the inability to obtain large amounts of protein for crystallization and the other is the failure to get well-diffracting crystals. With single particle electron cryomicroscopy, both these problems can be overcome and high-resolution structures of membrane proteins and other labile protein complexes can be obtained with very little protein and without the need for crystals. In this review, I highlight recent advances in electron microscopy, detectors and software, which have allowed determination of medium to high-resolution structures of membrane proteins and complexes that have been difficult to study by other structural biological techniques. Copyright © 2015 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd.. All rights reserved.

  8. Protein structure similarity from principle component correlation analysis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chou James


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Owing to rapid expansion of protein structure databases in recent years, methods of structure comparison are becoming increasingly effective and important in revealing novel information on functional properties of proteins and their roles in the grand scheme of evolutionary biology. Currently, the structural similarity between two proteins is measured by the root-mean-square-deviation (RMSD in their best-superimposed atomic coordinates. RMSD is the golden rule of measuring structural similarity when the structures are nearly identical; it, however, fails to detect the higher order topological similarities in proteins evolved into different shapes. We propose new algorithms for extracting geometrical invariants of proteins that can be effectively used to identify homologous protein structures or topologies in order to quantify both close and remote structural similarities. Results We measure structural similarity between proteins by correlating the principle components of their secondary structure interaction matrix. In our approach, the Principle Component Correlation (PCC analysis, a symmetric interaction matrix for a protein structure is constructed with relationship parameters between secondary elements that can take the form of distance, orientation, or other relevant structural invariants. When using a distance-based construction in the presence or absence of encoded N to C terminal sense, there are strong correlations between the principle components of interaction matrices of structurally or topologically similar proteins. Conclusion The PCC method is extensively tested for protein structures that belong to the same topological class but are significantly different by RMSD measure. The PCC analysis can also differentiate proteins having similar shapes but different topological arrangements. Additionally, we demonstrate that when using two independently defined interaction matrices, comparison of their maximum

  9. 3-Dimensional Protein Structure of Influenza (United States)


    The loss of productivity due to flu is staggering. Costs range as much as $20 billio a year. High mutation rates of the flu virus have hindered development of new drugs or vaccines. The secret lies in a small molecule which is attached to the host cell's surface. Each flu virus, no matter what strain, must remove this small molecule to escape the host cell to spread infection. Using data from space and earth grown crystals, researchers from the Center of Macromolecular Crystallography (CMC) are desining drugs to bind with this protein's active site. This lock and key fit reduces the spread of flu in the body by blocking its escape route. In collaboration with its corporate partner, the CMC has refined drug structure in preparation for clinical trials. Tested and approved relief is expected to reach drugstores by year 2004.

  10. A readily retrievable pool of synaptic vesicles


    Hua, Y; Sinha, R.; Thiel, C.; Schmidt, R.; Hueve, J.; Martens, H.; Hell, S.; Egner, A.; Klingauf, J.


    Abstract Although clathrin-mediated endocytosis (CME) is thought to be the predominant mechanism of synaptic vesicle (SV) recycling, it seems to be too slow for fast recycling. Therefore, it was suggested that a pre-sorted and pre-assembled pool of SV proteins on the presynaptic membrane might support a first wave of fast CME. In this study we monitored the temporal dynamics of such a 'readily retrievable pool' of SV proteins in rat hippocampal neurons using a novel probe. Applying...

  11. Sampling Realistic Protein Conformations Using Local Structural Bias

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hamelryck, Thomas Wim; Kent, John T.; Krogh, A.


    The prediction of protein structure from sequence remains a major unsolved problem in biology. The most successful protein structure prediction methods make use of a divide-and-conquer strategy to attack the problem: a conformational sampling method generates plausible candidate structures, which...... are subsequently accepted or rejected using an energy function. Conceptually, this often corresponds to separating local structural bias from the long-range interactions that stabilize the compact, native state. However, sampling protein conformations that are compatible with the local structural bias encoded...... for protein structure prediction, determination, simulation, and design....

  12. Direct imaging of RAB27B-enriched secretory vesicle biogenesis in lacrimal acinar cells reveals origins on a nascent vesicle budding site.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lilian Chiang

    Full Text Available This study uses YFP-tagged Rab27b expression in rabbit lacrimal gland acinar cells, which are polarized secretory epithelial cells, to characterize early stages of secretory vesicle trafficking. Here we demonstrate the utility of YFP-Rab27b to delineate new perspectives on the mechanisms of early vesicle biogenesis in lacrimal gland acinar cells, where information is significantly limited. Protocols were developed to deplete the mature YFP-Rab27b-enriched secretory vesicle pool in the subapical region of the cell, and confocal fluorescence microscopy was used to track vesicle replenishment. This analysis revealed a basally-localized organelle, which we termed the "nascent vesicle site," from which nascent vesicles appeared to emerge. Subapical vesicular YFP-Rab27b was co-localized with p150(Glued, a component of the dynactin cofactor of cytoplasmic dynein. Treatment with the microtubule-targeted agent, nocodazole, did not affect release of mature secretory vesicles, although during vesicle repletion it significantly altered nascent YFP-Rab27b-enriched secretory vesicle localization. Instead of moving to the subapical region, these vesicles were trapped at the nascent vesicle site which was adjacent to, if not a sub-compartment of, the trans-Golgi network. Finally, YFP-Rab27b-enriched secretory vesicles which reached the subapical cytoplasm appeared to acquire the actin-based motor protein, Myosin 5C. Our findings show that Rab27b enrichment occurs early in secretory vesicle formation, that secretory vesicles bud from a visually discernable nascent vesicle site, and that transport from the nascent vesicle site to the subapical region requires intact microtubules.

  13. PredictProtein--an open resource for online prediction of protein structural and functional features

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Yachdav, G.; Kloppmann, E.; Kajan, L.; Hecht, M.; Goldberg, T.; Hamp, T.; Honigschmid, P.; Schafferhans, A.; Roos, M.; Bernhofer, M.; Richter, L.; Ashkenazy, H.; Punta, M.; Schlessinger, A.; Bromberg, Y.; Schneider, R.; Vriend, G.; Sander, C.; Ben-Tal, N.; Rost, B.


    PredictProtein is a meta-service for sequence analysis that has been predicting structural and functional features of proteins since 1992. Queried with a protein sequence it returns: multiple sequence alignments, predicted aspects of structure (secondary structure, solvent accessibility,

  14. Protein folding, protein structure and the origin of life: Theoretical methods and solutions of dynamical problems (United States)

    Weaver, D. L.


    Theoretical methods and solutions of the dynamics of protein folding, protein aggregation, protein structure, and the origin of life are discussed. The elements of a dynamic model representing the initial stages of protein folding are presented. The calculation and experimental determination of the model parameters are discussed. The use of computer simulation for modeling protein folding is considered.

  15. Discovery of heterocyclic nonacetamide synaptic vesicle protein 2A (SV2A) ligands with single-digit nanomolar potency: opening avenues towards the first SV2A positron emission tomography (PET) ligands. (United States)

    Mercier, Joël; Archen, Laurence; Bollu, Véronique; Carré, Stéphane; Evrard, Yves; Jnoff, Eric; Kenda, Benoît; Lallemand, Bénédicte; Michel, Philippe; Montel, Florian; Moureau, Florence; Price, Nathalie; Quesnel, Yannick; Sauvage, Xavier; Valade, Anne; Provins, Laurent


    The role of the synaptic vesicle protein 2A (SV2A) protein, target of the antiepileptic drug levetiracetam, is still mostly unknown. Considering its potential to provide in vivo functional insights into the role of SV2A in epileptic patients, the development of an SV2A positron emission tomography (PET) tracer has been undertaken. Using a 3D pharmacophore model based on close analogues of levetiracetam, we report the rationale design of three heterocyclic non-acetamide lead compounds, UCB-A, UCB-H and UCB-J, the first single-digit nanomolar SV2A ligands with suitable properties for development as PET tracers. © 2014 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  16. Introduction to Extracellular Vesicles: Biogenesis, RNA Cargo Selection, Content, Release, and Uptake. (United States)

    Abels, Erik R; Breakefield, Xandra O


    Extracellular vesicles are a heterogeneous group of membrane-limited vesicles loaded with various proteins, lipids, and nucleic acids. Release of extracellular vesicles from its cell of origin occurs either through the outward budding of the plasma membrane or through the inward budding of the endosomal membrane, resulting in the formation of multivesicular bodies, which release vesicles upon fusion with the plasma membrane. The release of vesicles can facilitate intercellular communication by contact with or by internalization of contents, either by fusion with the plasma membrane or by endocytosis into "recipient" cells. Although the interest in extracellular vesicle research is increasing, there are still no real standards in place to separate or classify the different types of vesicles. This review provides an introduction into this expanding and complex field of research focusing on the biogenesis, nucleic acid cargo loading, content, release, and uptake of extracellular vesicles.


    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. V. Oberemko


    Full Text Available This review presents a generalized definition of vesicles as bilayer extracellular organelles of all celular forms of life: not only eu-, but also prokaryotic. The structure and composition of extracellular vesicles, history of research, nomenclature, their impact on life processes in health and disease are discussed. Moreover, vesicles may be useful as clinical instruments for biomarkers, and they are promising as biotechnological drug. However, many questions in this area are still unresolved and need to be addressed in the future. The most interesting from the point of view of practical health care represents a direction to study the effect of exosomes and microvesicles in the development and progression of a particular disease, the possibility of adjusting the pathological process by means of extracellular vesicles of a particular type, acting as an active ingredient. Relevant is the further elucidation of the role and importance of exosomes to the surrounding cells, tissues and organs at the molecular level, the prospects for the use of non-cellular vesicles as biomarkers of disease.


    NARCIS (Netherlands)



    Structural features of plant chitinases and chitin-binding proteins are discussed. Many of these proteins consist of multiple domains,of which the chitin-binding hevein domain is a predominant one. X-ray and NMR structures of representatives of the major classes of these proteins are available now,

  19. Studying Membrane Protein Structure and Function Using Nanodiscs

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Huda, Pie

    The structure and dynamic of membrane proteins can provide valuable information about general functions, diseases and effects of various drugs. Studying membrane proteins are a challenge as an amphiphilic environment is necessary to stabilise the protein in a functionally and structurally relevan...

  20. Nonlinear deterministic structures and the randomness of protein sequences

    CERN Document Server

    Huang Yan Zhao


    To clarify the randomness of protein sequences, we make a detailed analysis of a set of typical protein sequences representing each structural classes by using nonlinear prediction method. No deterministic structures are found in these protein sequences and this implies that they behave as random sequences. We also give an explanation to the controversial results obtained in previous investigations.

  1. A scenario for a genetically controlled fission of artificial vesicles

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bönzli, Eva; Hadorn, Maik; Jørgensen, Mikkel Girke


    Artificial vesicles have been used for decades as model systems of biological cells to investigate scientific questions in simulacra. In recent years, the significance of artificial vesicles further increased because they represent ideal candidates to become the building block of a de novo...... construction of a cell in a bottom-up manner. Numerous efforts to build an artificial cell that bridge the living and non-living world will most presumably represent one of the main goals of science in the 21st century. It was shown that artificial genetic programs and the required cellular machinery can...... be incorporated into vesicles, and therefore allow the synthesis of a large number of proteins (Noireaux et al. 2005). However, vesicle fission remains one of the upcoming challenges in the artificial cell project (Noireaux et al. 2011). So far, vesicle fission is implemented by applying mechanical stress...

  2. ISEV position paper: extracellular vesicle RNA analysis and bioinformatics

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrew F. Hill


    Full Text Available Extracellular vesicles (EVs are the collective term for the various vesicles that are released by cells into the extracellular space. Such vesicles include exosomes and microvesicles, which vary by their size and/or protein and genetic cargo. With the discovery that EVs contain genetic material in the form of RNA (evRNA has come the increased interest in these vesicles for their potential use as sources of disease biomarkers and potential therapeutic agents. Rapid developments in the availability of deep sequencing technologies have enabled the study of EV-related RNA in detail. In October 2012, the International Society for Extracellular Vesicles (ISEV held a workshop on “evRNA analysis and bioinformatics.” Here, we report the conclusions of one of the roundtable discussions where we discussed evRNA analysis technologies and provide some guidelines to researchers in the field to consider when performing such analysis.


    Pupyshev, A B


    The major features of extracellular vesicles secreted by mammalian cells are considered. Cell activation caused by formation of pathology stimulates the secretion acutely. The vesicles (exosomes, microvesicles) are enriched with annexin V, tetraspanin, miRNA. Exosomes are enriched especially by integrins, heat shock proteins. Microvesicles contain elevated amounts of tissue factors, phosphatidylserine, mRNA. The vesicles carry information about the pathological process, and microvesicles contain more proteins characteristic of inflammation and death than exosomes. They are important mediators of inflammation and infection in the body, have different effects on the immune system and the processes of carcinogenesis and neurodegeneration. However, antigenic profiles of extracellular vesicles differ not profoundly in various pathologies and so far they help diagnostics limitedly. The vesicles carry signals of genetic reprogramming of the cells and epigenetic stimulation, connected with both protein factors and mRNA and miRNA. Profiles of miRNA vesicles produced by the various pathological sources are studied actively and are useful as indicators of source and stage of cancer. Some ways of therapeutic use of the vesicles are also considered.

  4. Prediction of protein folding rates from simplified secondary structure alphabet. (United States)

    Huang, Jitao T; Wang, Titi; Huang, Shanran R; Li, Xin


    Protein folding is a very complicated and highly cooperative dynamic process. However, the folding kinetics is likely to depend more on a few key structural features. Here we find that secondary structures can determine folding rates of only large, multi-state folding proteins and fails to predict those for small, two-state proteins. The importance of secondary structures for protein folding is ordered as: extended β strand > α helix > bend > turn > undefined secondary structure>310 helix > isolated β strand > π helix. Only the first three secondary structures, extended β strand, α helix and bend, can achieve a good correlation with folding rates. This suggests that the rate-limiting step of protein folding would depend upon the formation of regular secondary structures and the buckling of chain. The reduced secondary structure alphabet provides a simplified description for the machine learning applications in protein design. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  5. Characterization of extracellular vesicles by IR spectroscopy: Fast and simple classification based on amide and CH stretching vibrations. (United States)

    Mihály, Judith; Deák, Róbert; Szigyártó, Imola Csilla; Bóta, Attila; Beke-Somfai, Tamás; Varga, Zoltán


    Extracellular vesicles isolated by differential centrifugation from Jurkat T-cell line were investigated by attenuated total reflection Fourier-transform infrared spectroscopy (ATR-FTIR). Amide and CH stretching band intensity ratios calculated from IR bands, characteristic of protein and lipid components, proved to be distinctive for the different extracellular vesicle subpopulations. This proposed 'spectroscopic protein-to-lipid ratio', combined with the outlined spectrum-analysis protocol is valid also for low sample concentrations (0.15-0.05mg/ml total protein content) and can carry information about the presence of other non-vesicular formations such as aggregated proteins, lipoproteins and immune complexes. Detailed analysis of IR data reveals compositional changes of extracellular vesicles subpopulations: second derivative spectra suggest changes in protein composition from parent cell towards exosomes favoring proteins with β-turns and unordered motifs at the expense of intermolecular β-sheet structures. The IR-based protein-to-lipid assessment protocol was tested also for red blood cell derived microvesicles for which similar values were obtained. The potential applicability of this technique for fast and efficient characterization of vesicular components is high as the investigated samples require no further preparations and all the different molecular species can be determined in the same sample. The results indicate that ATR-FTIR measurements provide a simple and reproducible method for the screening of extracellular vesicle preparations. It is hoped that this sophisticated technique will have further impact in extracellular vesicle research. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  6. Extracellular vesicles: fundamentals and clinical relevance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wael Nassar


    Full Text Available All types of cells of eukaryotic organisms produce and release small nanovesicles into their extracellular environment. Early studies have described these vesicles as ′garbage bags′ only to remove obsolete cellular molecules. Valadi and colleagues, in 2007, were the first to discover the capability of circulating extracellular vesicles (EVs to horizontally transfer functioning gene information between cells. These extracellular vesicles express components responsible for angiogenesis promotion, stromal remodeling, chemoresistance, genetic exchange, and signaling pathway activation through growth factor/receptor transfer. EVs represent an important mode of intercellular communication by serving as vehicles for transfer between cells of membrane and cytosolic proteins, lipids, signaling proteins, and RNAs. They contribute to physiology and pathology, and they have a myriad of potential clinical applications in health and disease. Moreover, vesicles can pass the blood-brain barrier and may perhaps even be considered as naturally occurring liposomes. These cell-derived EVs not only represent a central mediator of the disease microenvironment, but their presence in the peripheral circulation may serve as a surrogate for disease biopsies, enabling real-time diagnosis and disease monitoring. In this review, we′ll be addressing the characteristics of different types of extracellular EVs, as well as their clinical relevance and potential as diagnostic markers, and also define therapeutic options.

  7. Gaia: automated quality assessment of protein structure models. (United States)

    Kota, Pradeep; Ding, Feng; Ramachandran, Srinivas; Dokholyan, Nikolay V


    Increasing use of structural modeling for understanding structure-function relationships in proteins has led to the need to ensure that the protein models being used are of acceptable quality. Quality of a given protein structure can be assessed by comparing various intrinsic structural properties of the protein to those observed in high-resolution protein structures. In this study, we present tools to compare a given structure to high-resolution crystal structures. We assess packing by calculating the total void volume, the percentage of unsatisfied hydrogen bonds, the number of steric clashes and the scaling of the accessible surface area. We assess covalent geometry by determining bond lengths, angles, dihedrals and rotamers. The statistical parameters for the above measures, obtained from high-resolution crystal structures enable us to provide a quality-score that points to specific areas where a given protein structural model needs improvement. We provide these tools that appraise protein structures in the form of a web server Gaia ( Gaia evaluates the packing and covalent geometry of a given protein structure and provides quantitative comparison of the given structure to high-resolution crystal structures. Supplementary data are available at Bioinformatics online.

  8. Deletion of a single helix from the transmembrane domain causes large changes in membrane insertion properties and secondary structure of the bacterial conjugation protein TrwB. (United States)

    Vecino, Ana Julia; Segura, Rosa de Lima; de la Arada, Igor; de la Cruz, Fernando; Goñi, Félix M; Arrondo, José L; Alkorta, Itziar


    TrwB is an essential protein in the conjugative transfer of plasmid R388. The protein consists of a bulky cytosolic domain containing the catalytic site, and a small transmembrane domain (TMD). Our previous studies support the idea that the TMD plays an essential role in the activity, structure and stability of the protein. We have prepared a mutant, TrwBΔN50 that lacks one of the two α-helices in the TMD. The mutant has been studied both in detergent suspension and reconstituted in lipid vesicles. Deletion of a single helix from the TMD is enough to increase markedly the affinity of TrwB for ATP. The deletion changes the secondary structure of the cytosolic domain, whose infrared spectroscopy (IR) spectra become similar to those of the mutant TrwBΔN70 lacking the whole TMD. Interestingly, when TrwBΔN50 is reconstituted into lipid membranes, the cytosolic domain orients itself towards the vesicle interior, opposite to what happens for wild-type TrwB. In addition, we analyze the secondary structure of the TMD and TMD-lacking mutant TrwBΔN70, and found that the sum IR spectrum of the two protein fragments is different from that of the native protein, indicating the irreversibility of changes caused in TrwB by deletion of the TMD. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  9. SCPC: a method to structurally compare protein complexes. (United States)

    Koike, Ryotaro; Ota, Motonori


    Protein-protein interactions play vital functional roles in various biological phenomena. Physical contacts between proteins have been revealed using experimental approaches that have solved the structures of protein complexes at atomic resolution. To examine the huge number of protein complexes available in the Protein Data Bank, an efficient automated method that compares protein complexes is required. We have developed Structural Comparison of Protein Complexes (SCPC), a novel method to structurally compare protein complexes. SCPC compares the spatial arrangements of subunits in a complex with those in another complex using secondary structure elements. Similar substructures are detected in two protein complexes and the similarity is scored. SCPC was applied to dimers, homo-oligomers and haemoglobins. SCPC properly estimated structural similarities between the dimers examined as well as an existing method, MM-align. Conserved substructures were detected in a homo-tetramer and a homo-hexamer composed of homologous proteins. Classification of quaternary structures of haemoglobins using SCPC was consistent with the conventional classification. The results demonstrate that SCPC is a valuable tool to investigate the structures of protein complexes. SCPC is available at Supplementary data are available at Bioinformatics online.

  10. K-nearest uphill clustering in the protein structure space

    KAUST Repository

    Cui, Xuefeng


    The protein structure classification problem, which is to assign a protein structure to a cluster of similar proteins, is one of the most fundamental problems in the construction and application of the protein structure space. Early manually curated protein structure classifications (e.g., SCOP and CATH) are very successful, but recently suffer the slow updating problem because of the increased throughput of newly solved protein structures. Thus, fully automatic methods to cluster proteins in the protein structure space have been designed and developed. In this study, we observed that the SCOP superfamilies are highly consistent with clustering trees representing hierarchical clustering procedures, but the tree cutting is very challenging and becomes the bottleneck of clustering accuracy. To overcome this challenge, we proposed a novel density-based K-nearest uphill clustering method that effectively eliminates noisy pairwise protein structure similarities and identifies density peaks as cluster centers. Specifically, the density peaks are identified based on K-nearest uphills (i.e., proteins with higher densities) and K-nearest neighbors. To our knowledge, this is the first attempt to apply and develop density-based clustering methods in the protein structure space. Our results show that our density-based clustering method outperforms the state-of-the-art clustering methods previously applied to the problem. Moreover, we observed that computational methods and human experts could produce highly similar clusters at high precision values, while computational methods also suggest to split some large superfamilies into smaller clusters. © 2016 Elsevier B.V.

  11. Structural and Function Prediction of Musa acuminata subsp. Malaccensis Protein

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Anum Munir; Azhar Mehmood; Shumaila Azam


    ... built up. Illustrating the structural and functional privileged insights of these HPs might likewise prompt a superior comprehension of the protein-protein associations or networks in diverse types of life. Bananas (Musa acuminata spp...

  12. TSTMP: target selection for structural genomics of human transmembrane proteins. (United States)

    Varga, Julia; Dobson, László; Reményi, István; Tusnády, Gábor E


    The TSTMP database is designed to help the target selection of human transmembrane proteins for structural genomics projects and structure modeling studies. Currently, there are only 60 known 3D structures among the polytopic human transmembrane proteins and about a further 600 could be modeled using existing structures. Although there are a great number of human transmembrane protein structures left to be determined, surprisingly only a small fraction of these proteins have 'selected' (or above) status according to the current version the TargetDB/TargetTrack database. This figure is even worse regarding those transmembrane proteins that would contribute the most to the structural coverage of the human transmembrane proteome. The database was built by sorting out proteins from the human transmembrane proteome with known structure and searching for suitable model structures for the remaining proteins by combining the results of a state-of-the-art transmembrane specific fold recognition algorithm and a sequence similarity search algorithm. Proteins were searched for homologues among the human transmembrane proteins in order to select targets whose successful structure determination would lead to the best structural coverage of the human transmembrane proteome. The pipeline constructed for creating the TSTMP database guarantees to keep the database up-to-date. The database is available at © The Author(s) 2016. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Nucleic Acids Research.

  13. Rheology and structure of milk protein gels

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Vliet, van T.; Lakemond, C.M.M.; Visschers, R.W.


    Recent studies on gel formation and rheology of milk gels are reviewed. A distinction is made between gels formed by aggregated casein, gels of `pure` whey proteins and gels in which both casein and whey proteins contribute to their properties. For casein' whey protein mixtures, it has been shown

  14. Implementation of a Parallel Protein Structure Alignment Service on Cloud (United States)

    Hung, Che-Lun; Lin, Yaw-Ling


    Protein structure alignment has become an important strategy by which to identify evolutionary relationships between protein sequences. Several alignment tools are currently available for online comparison of protein structures. In this paper, we propose a parallel protein structure alignment service based on the Hadoop distribution framework. This service includes a protein structure alignment algorithm, a refinement algorithm, and a MapReduce programming model. The refinement algorithm refines the result of alignment. To process vast numbers of protein structures in parallel, the alignment and refinement algorithms are implemented using MapReduce. We analyzed and compared the structure alignments produced by different methods using a dataset randomly selected from the PDB database. The experimental results verify that the proposed algorithm refines the resulting alignments more accurately than existing algorithms. Meanwhile, the computational performance of the proposed service is proportional to the number of processors used in our cloud platform. PMID:23671842

  15. Implementation of a Parallel Protein Structure Alignment Service on Cloud

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Che-Lun Hung


    Full Text Available Protein structure alignment has become an important strategy by which to identify evolutionary relationships between protein sequences. Several alignment tools are currently available for online comparison of protein structures. In this paper, we propose a parallel protein structure alignment service based on the Hadoop distribution framework. This service includes a protein structure alignment algorithm, a refinement algorithm, and a MapReduce programming model. The refinement algorithm refines the result of alignment. To process vast numbers of protein structures in parallel, the alignment and refinement algorithms are implemented using MapReduce. We analyzed and compared the structure alignments produced by different methods using a dataset randomly selected from the PDB database. The experimental results verify that the proposed algorithm refines the resulting alignments more accurately than existing algorithms. Meanwhile, the computational performance of the proposed service is proportional to the number of processors used in our cloud platform.

  16. Interaction of a synthetic peptide corresponding to the N-terminus of canine distemper virus fusion protein with phospholipid vesicles: a biophysical study. (United States)

    Aranda, Francisco J; Teruel, José A; Ortiz, Antonio


    The F protein of canine distemper virus (CDV) is a classic type I glycoprotein formed by two polypeptides, F1 and F2. The N-terminal regions of the F1 polypeptides of CDV, measles virus and other paramyxoviruses present moderate to high homology, supporting the existence of a high conservation within these structures, which emphasises its role in viral-host cell membrane fusion. This N-terminal polypeptide is usually termed the fusion peptide. The fusion peptides of most viral fusion-mediating glycoproteins contain a high proportion of hydrophobic amino acids, which facilitates its insertion into target membranes during fusion. In this work we report on the interaction of a 31-residue synthetic peptide (FP31) corresponding to the N terminus of CDV F1 protein with phospholipid membranes composed of various phospholipids, as studied by means of various biophysical techniques. FTIR investigation of FP31 secondary structure in aqueous medium and in membranes resulted in a major proportion of alpha-helical structure which increased upon membrane insertion. Differential scanning calorimetry (DSC) showed that the presence of concentrations of FP31 as low as 0.1 mol%, in mixtures with L-alpha-dimyristoylphosphatidylcholine (DMPC), L-alpha-dipalmitoylphosphatidylcholine (DPPC) and L-alpha-distearoylphosphatidylcholine (DSPC), already affected the thermotropic properties of the gel to liquid-crystalline phase transition. In mixtures with the three lipids, increasing the concentration of peptide made the pretransition to disappear, and lowered and broadened the main transition. This effect was slightly stronger as the acyl chain length of the phospholipid grew larger. In the corresponding partial phase diagrams, no immiscibilities or critical points were observed. FTIR showed that incorporation of 1 mol% of peptide in DPPC shifted the antisymmetric and symmetric CH2 stretching bands to higher values, indicating the existence of an additional disordering of the acyl chain

  17. Using linear algebra for protein structural comparison and classification


    Janaína Gomide; Raquel Melo-Minardi; Marcos Augusto dos Santos; Goran Neshich; Wagner Meira Jr.; Júlio César Lopes; Marcelo Santoro


    In this article, we describe a novel methodology to extract semantic characteristics from protein structures using linear algebra in order to compose structural signature vectors which may be used efficiently to compare and classify protein structures into fold families. These signatures are built from the pattern of hydrophobic intrachain interactions using Singular Value Decomposition (SVD) and Latent Semantic Indexing (LSI) techniques. Considering proteins as documents and contacts as term...

  18. Extracellular Vesicles Mediate Receptor-Independent Transmission of Novel Tick-Borne Bunyavirus (United States)

    Silvas, Jesus A.; Popov, Vsevolod L.; Paulucci-Holthauzen, Adriana


    ABSTRACT Severe fever with thrombocytopenia syndrome (SFTS) virus is a newly recognized member of the genus Phlebovirus in the family Bunyaviridae. The virus was isolated from patients presenting with hemorrhagic manifestations and an initial case fatality rate of 12 to 30% was reported. Due to the recent emergence of this pathogen, there is limited knowledge on the molecular virology of SFTS virus. Recently, we reported that the SFTS virus NSs protein inhibited the activation of the beta interferon (IFN-β) promoter. Furthermore, we also found that SFTS virus NSs relocalizes key components of the IFN response into NSs-induced cytoplasmic structures. Due to the important role these structures play during SFTS virus replication, we conducted live cell imaging studies to gain further insight into the role and trafficking of these cytoplasmic structures during virus infection. We found that some of the SFTS virus NSs-positive cytoplasmic structures were secreted to the extracellular space and endocytosed by neighboring cells. We also found that these secreted structures isolated from NSs-expressing cells and SFTS virus-infected cells were positive for the viral protein NSs and the host protein CD63, a protein associated with extracellular vesicles. Electron microscopy studies also revealed that the isolated CD63-immunoprecipitated extracellular vesicles produced during SFTS virus infection contained virions. The virions harbored within these structures were efficiently delivered to uninfected cells and were able to sustain SFTS virus replication. Altogether, these results suggest that SFTS virus exploits extracellular vesicles to mediate virus receptor-independent transmission to host cells and open the avenue for novel therapeutic strategies against SFTS virus and related pathogens. IMPORTANCE SFTS virus is novel bunyavirus associated with hemorrhagic fever illness. Currently, limited information is available about SFTS virus. In the present study, we demonstrated

  19. RIM1α SUMOylation Is Required for Fast Synaptic Vesicle Exocytosis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fatima Girach


    Full Text Available The rapid, activity-dependent quantal presynaptic release of neurotransmitter is vital for brain function. The complex process of vesicle priming, fusion, and retrieval is very precisely controlled and requires the spatiotemporal coordination of multiple protein-protein interactions. Here, we show that posttranslational modification of the active zone protein Rab3-interacting molecule 1α (RIM1α by the small ubiquitin-like modifier 1 (SUMO-1 functions as a molecular switch to direct these interactions and is essential for fast synaptic vesicle exocytosis. RIM1α SUMOylation at lysine residue K502 facilitates the clustering of CaV2.1 calcium channels and enhances the Ca2+ influx necessary for vesicular release, whereas non-SUMOylated RIM1α participates in the docking/priming of synaptic vesicles and maintenance of active zone structure. These results demonstrate that SUMOylation of RIM1α is a key determinant of rapid, synchronous neurotransmitter release, and the SUMO-mediated “switching” of RIM1α between binding proteins provides insight into the mechanisms underpinning synaptic function and dysfunction.

  20. Extracellular Vesicles in Luminal Fluid of the Ovine Uterus (United States)

    Burns, Gregory; Brooks, Kelsey; Wildung, Mark; Navakanitworakul, Raphatphorn; Christenson, Lane K.; Spencer, Thomas E.


    Microvesicles and exosomes are nanoparticles released from cells and can contain small RNAs, mRNA and proteins that affect cells at distant sites. In sheep, endogenous beta retroviruses (enJSRVs) are expressed in the endometrial epithelia of the uterus and can be transferred to the conceptus trophectoderm. One potential mechanism of enJSRVs transfer from the uterus to the conceptus is via exosomes/microvesicles. Therefore, studies were conducted to evaluate exosomes in the uterine luminal fluid (ULF) of sheep. Exosomes/microvesicles (hereafter referred to as extracellular vesicles) were isolated from the ULF of day 14 cyclic and pregnant ewes using ExoQuick-TC. Transmission electron microscopy and nanoparticle tracking analysis found the isolates contained vesicles that ranged from 50 to 200 nm in diameter. The isolated extracellular vesicles were positive for two common markers of exosomes (CD63 and HSP70) by Western blot analysis. Proteins in the extracellular vesicles were determined by mass spectrometry and Western blot analysis. Extracellular vesicle RNA was analyzed for small RNAs by sequencing and enJSRVs RNA by RT-PCR. The ULF extracellular vesicles contained a large number of small RNAs and miRNAs including 81 conserved mature miRNAs. Cyclic and pregnant ULF extracellular vesicles contained enJSRVs env and gag RNAs that could be delivered to heterologous cells in vitro. These studies support the hypothesis that ULF extracellular vesicles can deliver enJSRVs RNA to the conceptus, which is important as enJSRVs regulate conceptus trophectoderm development. Importantly, these studies support the idea that extracellular vesicles containing select miRNAs, RNAs and proteins are present in the ULF and likely have a biological role in conceptus-endometrial interactions important for the establishment and maintenance of pregnancy. PMID:24614226

  1. Protein Structure and Function Prediction Using I-TASSER. (United States)

    Yang, Jianyi; Zhang, Yang


    I-TASSER is a hierarchical protocol for automated protein structure prediction and structure-based function annotation. Starting from the amino acid sequence of target proteins, I-TASSER first generates full-length atomic structural models from multiple threading alignments and iterative structural assembly simulations followed by atomic-level structure refinement. The biological functions of the protein, including ligand-binding sites, enzyme commission number, and gene ontology terms, are then inferred from known protein function databases based on sequence and structure profile comparisons. I-TASSER is freely available as both an on-line server and a stand-alone package. This unit describes how to use the I-TASSER protocol to generate structure and function prediction and how to interpret the prediction results, as well as alternative approaches for further improving the I-TASSER modeling quality for distant-homologous and multi-domain protein targets. Copyright © 2015 John Wiley & Sons, Inc.

  2. Genetically controlled fusion, exocytosis and fission of artificial vesicles-a roadmap

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bönzli, Eva; Hadorn, Maik; de Lucrezia, Davide


    were shown to fuse if a special class of viral proteins, termed fusogenic peptides, were added to the external medium (Nomura et al. 2004). In the present work, we intend to develop genetically controlled fusion, fission and exocytosis of vesicles by the synthesis of peptides within vesicles. First, we...... enclosed synthesized peptides in vesicles to induce in a next step fusion of adjacent vesicles, fission and exocytosis of nested vesicles. Second, we will replace the peptides by an enclosed cell-free expression system to internally synthesize fusion peptides. To control the gene expression, different...

  3. Proteomic Analysis of Blood Extracellular Vesicles in Cardiovascular Disease by LC-MS/MS Analysis. (United States)

    Baldan-Martin, Montserrat; de la Cuesta, Fernando; Alvarez-Llamas, Gloria; Ruiz-Hurtado, Gema; Ruilope, Luis M; Barderas, Maria G


    Extracellular vesicles are membrane vesicles related to cell communication. These vesicles consist of proteins, RNA, and microRNA and are an interesting and important tool to understand the processes taking place in the secreting cell, especially in diseases in which its release is often enhanced. The used of blood extracellular vesicles in cardiovascular disease as a low invasive, easily accessible source of circulating markers could give us important information related to pathological process even more with the use of proteomic analysis. In this chapter, we describe a protocol to isolate and proteomic analyze extracellular vesicles from blood associated with cardiovascular disease.

  4. Extracellular Vesicles from Ovarian Carcinoma Cells Display Specific Glycosignatures

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Joana Gomes


    Full Text Available Cells release vesicles to the extracellular environment with characteristic nucleic acid, protein, lipid, and glycan composition. Here we have isolated and characterized extracellular vesicles (EVs and total cell membranes (MBs from ovarian carcinoma OVMz cells. EVs were enriched in specific markers, including Tsg101, CD63, CD9, annexin-I, and MBs contained markers of cellular membrane compartments, including calnexin, GRASP65, GS28, LAMP-1, and L1CAM. The glycoprotein galectin-3 binding protein (LGALS3BP was strongly enriched in EVs and it contained sialylated complex N-glycans. Lectin blotting with a panel of lectins showed that EVs had specific glycosignatures relative to MBs. Furthermore, the presence of glycoproteins bearing complex N-glycans with α2,3-linked sialic acid, fucose, bisecting-GlcNAc and LacdiNAc structures, and O-glycans with the T-antigen were detected. The inhibition of N-glycosylation processing from high mannose to complex glycans using kifunensine caused changes in the composition of EVs and induced a decrease of several glycoproteins. In conclusion, the results showed that glycosignatures of EVs were specific and altered glycosylation within the cell affected the composition and/or dynamics of EVs release. Furthermore, the identified glycosignatures of EVs could provide novel biomarkers for ovarian cancer.

  5. Placenta-derived extracellular vesicles: their cargo and possible functions. (United States)

    Familari, Mary; Cronqvist, Tina; Masoumi, Zahra; Hansson, Stefan R


    The literature on extracellular vesicles consists of rapidly expanding and often contradictory information. In this paper we attempt to review what is currently known regarding extracellular vesicles released specifically from human placental syncytiotrophoblast cells with a focus on the common but complex pregnancy-associated syndrome pre-eclampsia, where the level of syncytiotrophoblast extracellular vesicle release is significantly increased. We review common methods for syncytiotrophoblast extracellular vesicle derivation and isolation and we discuss the cargo of syncytiotrophoblast extracellular vesicles including proteins, RNA and lipids and their possible functions. A meta-analysis of available trophoblast-derived extracellular vesicle proteomic datasets revealed only three proteins in common: albumin, fibronectin-1 and plasminogen activator inhibitor-1, suggesting some variability in vesicle cargo, most likely reflecting stage and cell type of origin. We discuss the possible sources of variability that may have led to the low number of common markers, which has led us to speculate that markers and density in common use may not be strict criteria for identifying and isolating placenta-derived exosomes.

  6. A Network of Three Types of Filaments Organizes Synaptic Vesicles for Storage, Mobilization, and Docking. (United States)

    Cole, Andy A; Chen, Xiaobing; Reese, Thomas S


    Synaptic transmission between neurons requires precise management of synaptic vesicles. While individual molecular components of the presynaptic terminal are well known, exactly how the molecules are organized into a molecular machine serving the storage and mobilization of synaptic vesicles to the active zone remains unclear. Here we report three filament types associated with synaptic vesicles in glutamatergic synapses revealed by electron microscope tomography in unstimulated, dissociated rat hippocampal neurons. One filament type, likely corresponding to the SNAREpin complex, extends from the active zone membrane and surrounds docked vesicles. A second filament type contacts all vesicles throughout the active zone and pairs vesicles together. On the third filament type, vesicles attach to side branches extending from the long filament core and form vesicle clusters that are distributed throughout the vesicle cloud and along the active zone membrane. Detailed analysis of presynaptic structure reveals how each of the three filament types interacts with synaptic vesicles, providing a means to traffic reserved and recycled vesicles from the cloud of vesicles into the docking position at the active zone. The formation and release of synaptic vesicles has been extensively investigated. Explanations of the release of synaptic vesicles generally begin with the movement of vesicles from the cloud into the synaptic active zone. However, the presynaptic terminal is filled with filamentous material that would appear to limit vesicular diffusion. Here, we provide a systematic description of three filament types connecting synaptic vesicles. A picture emerges illustrating how the cooperative attachment and release of these three filament types facilitate the movement of vesicles to the active zone to become docked in preparation for release. Copyright © 2016 the authors 0270-6474/16/363222-09$15.00/0.

  7. Protein structural modularity and robustness are associated with evolvability. (United States)

    Rorick, Mary M; Wagner, Günter P


    Theory suggests that biological modularity and robustness allow for maintenance of fitness under mutational change, and when this change is adaptive, for evolvability. Empirical demonstrations that these traits promote evolvability in nature remain scant however. This is in part because modularity, robustness, and evolvability are difficult to define and measure in real biological systems. Here, we address whether structural modularity and/or robustness confer evolvability at the level of proteins by looking for associations between indices of protein structural modularity, structural robustness, and evolvability. We propose a novel index for protein structural modularity: the number of regular secondary structure elements (helices and strands) divided by the number of residues in the structure. We index protein evolvability as the proportion of sites with evidence of being under positive selection multiplied by the average rate of adaptive evolution at these sites, and we measure this as an average over a phylogeny of 25 mammalian species. We use contact density as an index of protein designability, and thus, structural robustness. We find that protein evolvability is positively associated with structural modularity as well as structural robustness and that the effect of structural modularity on evolvability is independent of the structural robustness index. We interpret these associations to be the result of reduced constraints on amino acid substitutions in highly modular and robust protein structures, which results in faster adaptation through natural selection.

  8. New insights in the composition of extracellular vesicles from pancreatic cancer cells: implications for biomarkers and functions. (United States)

    Klein-Scory, Susanne; Tehrani, Mahnaz Moradian; Eilert-Micus, Christina; Adamczyk, Kamila A; Wojtalewicz, Nathalie; Schnölzer, Martina; Hahn, Stephan A; Schmiegel, Wolff; Schwarte-Waldhoff, Irmgard


    Pancreatic cancer development is associated with characteristic alterations like desmoplastic reaction and immune escape which are mediated by the cell-cell communication mechanism and by the microenvironment of the cells. The whole of released components are important determinants in these processes. Especially the extracellular vesicles released by pancreatic cancer cells play a role in cell communication and modulate cell growth and immune responses. Here, we present the proteomic description of affinity purified extracellular vesicles from pancreatic tumour cells, compared to the secretome, defined as the whole of the proteins released by pancreatic cancer cells. The proteomic data provide comprehensive catalogues of hundreds of proteins, and the comparison reveals a special proteomic composition of pancreatic cancer cell derived extracellular vesicles. The functional analysis of the protein composition displayed that membrane proteins, glycoproteins, small GTP binding proteins and a further, heterogeneous group of proteins are enriched in vesicles, whereas proteins derived from proteasomes and ribosomes, as well as metabolic enzymes, are not components of the vesicles. Furthermore proteins playing a role in carcinogenesis and modulators of the extracellular matrix (ECM) or cell-cell interactions are components of affinity purified extracellular vesicles. The data deepen the knowledge of extracellular vesicle composition by hundreds of proteins that have not been previously described as vesicle components released by pancreatic cancer cells. Extracellular vesicles derived from pancreatic cancer cells show common proteins shared with other vesicles as well as cell type specific proteins indicating biomarker candidates and suggesting functional roles in cancer cell stroma interactions.

  9. Extracellular vesicles as new pharmacological targets to treat atherosclerosis. (United States)

    Yin, Min; Loyer, Xavier; Boulanger, Chantal M


    Extracellular vesicles released by most cell types, include apoptotic bodies (ABs), microvesicles (MVs) and exosomes. They play a crucial role in physiology and pathology, contributing to "cell-to-cell" communication by modifying the phenotype and the function of target cells. Thus, extracellular vesicles participate in the key processes of atherosclerosis from endothelial dysfunction, vascular wall inflammation to vascular remodeling. The purpose of this review is to summarize recent findings on extracellular vesicle formation, structure, release and clearance. We focus on the deleterious and beneficial effects of extracellular vesicles in the development of atherosclerosis. The potential role of extracellular vesicles as biomarkers and pharmacological targets, their innate therapeutic capacity, or their use for novel drug delivery devices in atherosclerotic cardiovascular diseases will also be discussed. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  10. Membrane-shed vesicles from the parasite Trichomonas vaginalis: characterization and their association with cell interaction. (United States)

    Nievas, Yesica R; Coceres, Veronica M; Midlej, Victor; de Souza, Wanderley; Benchimol, Marlene; Pereira-Neves, Antonio; Vashisht, Ajay A; Wohlschlegel, James A; Johnson, Patricia J; de Miguel, Natalia


    Trichomonas vaginalis is a common sexually transmitted parasite that colonizes the human urogenital tract, where it remains extracellular and adheres to epithelial cells. Infections range from asymptomatic to highly inflammatory, depending on the host and the parasite strain. Despite the serious consequences associated with trichomoniasis disease, little is known about parasite or host factors involved in attachment of the parasite-to-host epithelial cells. Here, we report the identification of microvesicle-like structures (MVs) released by T. vaginalis. MVs are considered universal transport vehicles for intercellular communication as they can incorporate peptides, proteins, lipids, miRNA, and mRNA, all of which can be transferred to target cells through receptor-ligand interactions, fusion with the cell membrane, and delivery of a functional cargo to the cytoplasm of the target cell. In the present study, we demonstrated that T. vaginalis release MVs from the plasma and the flagellar membranes of the parasite. We performed proteomic profiling of these structures demonstrating that they possess physical characteristics similar to mammalian extracellular vesicles and might be selectively charged with specific protein content. In addition, we demonstrated that viable T. vaginalis parasites release large vesicles (LVs), membrane structures larger than 1 µm that are able to interact with other parasites and with the host cell. Finally, we show that both populations of vesicles present on the surface of T vaginalis are induced in the presence of host cells, consistent with a role in modulating cell interactions.

  11. Measuring Synaptic Vesicle Endocytosis in Cultured Hippocampal Neurons. (United States)

    Villarreal, Seth; Lee, Sung Hoon; Wu, Ling-Gang


    During endocytosis, fused synaptic vesicles are retrieved at nerve terminals, allowing for vesicle recycling and thus the maintenance of synaptic transmission during repetitive nerve firing. Impaired endocytosis in pathological conditions leads to decreases in synaptic strength and brain functions. Here, we describe methods used to measure synaptic vesicle endocytosis at the mammalian hippocampal synapse in neuronal culture. We monitored synaptic vesicle protein endocytosis by fusing a synaptic vesicular membrane protein, including synaptophysin and VAMP2/synaptobrevin, at the vesicular lumenal side, with pHluorin, a pH-sensitive green fluorescent protein that increases its fluorescence intensity as the pH increases. During exocytosis, vesicular lumen pH increases, whereas during endocytosis vesicular lumen pH is re-acidified. Thus, an increase of pHluorin fluorescence intensity indicates fusion, whereas a decrease indicates endocytosis of the labelled synaptic vesicle protein. In addition to using the pHluorin imaging method to record endocytosis, we monitored vesicular membrane endocytosis by electron microscopy (EM) measurements of Horseradish peroxidase (HRP) uptake by vesicles. Finally, we monitored the formation of nerve terminal membrane pits at various times after high potassium-induced depolarization. The time course of HRP uptake and membrane pit formation indicates the time course of endocytosis.

  12. Mating-reactive membrane vesicles from cilia of Paramecium caudatum (United States)


    Membrane vesicles with a high mating reactivity were obtained from cilia of Paramecium caudatum by treatment with a solution containing 2 M urea and 0.1 mM Na2-EDTA. All processes of conjugation were induced in cells of the complementary mating type by approximately 10 mug/ml proteins of the vesicles. Electron microscope observation showed that the membrane vesicles have a diameter of 100-150 nm. Electrophoretic analysis on SDS polyacrylamide gel revealed no significant difference in polypeptide patterns of the particles from the two complementary mating types. PMID:818093

  13. A novel multiplex bead-based platform highlights the diversity of extracellular vesicles


    Wild, Stefan; Koliha, Nina; Wiencek, Yvonne; Heider, Ute; Jüngst, Christian; Kladt, Nikolay; Krauthäuser, Susanne; Ian C. D. Johnston; Bosio, Andreas; Schauss, Astrid


    The surface protein composition of extracellular vesicles (EVs) is related to the originating cell and may play a role in vesicle function. Knowledge of the protein content of individual EVs is still limited because of the technical challenges to analyse small vesicles. Here, we introduce a novel multiplex bead-based platform to investigate up to 39 different surface markers in one sample. The combination of capture antibody beads with fluorescently labelled detection antibodies allows the an...

  14. Vesicle-independent extracellular release of a proinflammatory outer membrane lipoprotein in free-soluble form

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Oscarsson Jan


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Aggregatibacter actinomycetemcomitans is an oral bacterium associated with aggressively progressing periodontitis. Extracellular release of bacterial outer membrane proteins has been suggested to mainly occur via outer membrane vesicles. This study investigated the presence and conservation of peptidoglycan-associated lipoprotein (AaPAL among A. actinomycetemcomitans strains, the immunostimulatory effect of AaPAL, and whether live cells release this structural outer membrane lipoprotein in free-soluble form independent of vesicles. Results The pal locus and its gene product were confirmed in clinical A. actinomycetemcomitans strains by PCR-restriction fragment length polymorphism and immunoblotting. Culturing under different growth conditions revealed no apparent requirement for the AaPAL expression. Inactivation of pal in a wild-type strain (D7S and in its spontaneous laboratory variant (D7SS resulted in pleiotropic cellular effects. In a cell culture insert model (filter pore size 0.02 μm, AaPAL was detected from filtrates when strains D7S and D7SS were incubated in serum or broth in the inserts. Electron microscopy showed that A. actinomycetemcomitans vesicles (0.05–0.2 μm were larger than the filter pores and that there were no vesicles in the filtrates. The filtrates were immunoblot negative for a cytoplasmic marker, cyclic AMP (cAMP receptor protein. An ex vivo model indicated cytokine production from human whole blood stimulated by AaPAL. Conclusion Free-soluble AaPAL can be extracellularly released in a process independent of vesicles.

  15. Commercial cow milk contains physically stable extracellular vesicles expressing immunoregulatory TGF-β. (United States)

    Pieters, Bartijn C H; Arntz, Onno J; Bennink, Miranda B; Broeren, Mathijs G A; van Caam, Arjan P M; Koenders, Marije I; van Lent, Peter L E M; van den Berg, Wim B; de Vries, Marieke; van der Kraan, Peter M; van de Loo, Fons A J


    Extracellular vesicles, including exosomes, have been identified in all biological fluids and rediscovered as an important part of the intercellular communication. Breast milk also contains extracellular vesicles and the proposed biological function is to enhance the antimicrobial defense in newborns. It is, however, unknown whether extracellular vesicles are still present in commercial milk and, more importantly, whether they retained their bioactivity. Here, we characterize the extracellular vesicles present in semi-skimmed cow milk available for consumers and study their effect on T cells. Extracellular vesicles from commercial milk were isolated and characterized. Milk-derived extracellular vesicles contained several immunomodulating miRNAs and membrane protein CD63, characteristics of exosomes. In contrast to RAW 267.4 derived extracellular vesicles the milk-derived extracellular vesicles were extremely stable under degrading conditions, including low pH, boiling and freezing. Milk-derived extracellular vesicles were easily taken up by murine macrophages in vitro. Furthermore, we found that they can facilitate T cell differentiation towards the pathogenic Th17 lineage. Using a (CAGA)12-luc reporter assay we showed that these extracellular vesicles carried bioactive TGF-β, and that anti-TGF-β antibodies blocked Th17 differentiation. Our findings show that commercial milk contains stable extracellular vesicles, including exosomes, and carry immunoregulatory cargo. These data suggest that the extracellular vesicles present in commercial cow milk remains intact in the gastrointestinal tract and exert an immunoregulatory effect.

  16. Visualization of peptide secretory vesicles in living nerve cells. (United States)

    Park, Joshua J; Loh, Y Peng


    Analysis of real-time movements of peptidergic vesicles in live neurons provides insight into molecular mechanism(s) supporting the activity-dependent secretion of neurotrophins and neuropeptides. We examined the effect of overexpression of exogenous peptides comprising of the cytoplasmic tail sequence of vesicular carboxypeptidase E (CPE), proposed to be involved in the mechanism of trafficking of peptidergic secretory vesicles, in live hippocampal neurons. E16 rat hippocampal neurons were transfected with the peptidergic vesicle markers, CPE C-terminally tagged with red or green fluorescent protein, or brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) tagged with green fluorescent protein, and grown on dishes specialized for real-time live cell visualization. Movements of peptidergic vesicles were imaged in a temperature-controlled chamber on a confocal inverted microscope and analyzed with respect to their velocity, displacement distance, and processivity.

  17. Functional transferred DNA within extracellular vesicles

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Cai, Jin [Department of Cardiology, Daping Hospital, The Third Military Medical University, Chongqing 400042 (China); Department of Neurology, Jinling Hospital, Nanjing University School of Medicine, Jiangsu Province (China); Wu, Gengze [Department of Cardiology, Daping Hospital, The Third Military Medical University, Chongqing 400042 (China); Jose, Pedro A. [Division of Nephrology, Department of Medicine and Physiology, University of Maryland, School of Medicine, Baltimore, MD 21201 (United States); Zeng, Chunyu, E-mail: [Department of Cardiology, Daping Hospital, The Third Military Medical University, Chongqing 400042 (China)


    Extracellular vesicles (EVs) are small membrane vesicles including exosomes and shedding vesicles that mediated a cell-to-cell communication. EVs are released from almost all cell types under both physiological and pathological conditions and incorporate nuclear and cytoplasmic molecules for intercellular delivery. Besides protein, mRNA, and microRNA of these molecules, as recent studies show, specific DNA are prominently packaged into EVs. It appears likely that some of exosomes or shedding vesicles, bearing nuclear molecules are released upon bubble-like blebs. Specific interaction of EVs with susceptible recipients performs the uptake of EVs into the target cells, discharging their cargo including nuclear and cytoplasmic macromolecules into the cytosol. These findings expand the nucleic acid content of EVs to include increased levels of specific DNA. Thus, EVs contain a repertoire of genetic information available for horizontal gene transfer and potential use as blood biomarkers for cancer and atherosclerosis. In this review, the focus is on the characteristics, biological functions, and roles in diseases of DNA within EVs. - Highlights: • This review is focused on the DNA within EVs including its characteristics, biological functions, and roles in diseases. • It is clear that DNA within EVs might have important physiological and pathological roles in various diseases. • Knowledge in this area may provides us alternative methods for disease diagnosis or therapy in the future.

  18. PSI-2: structural genomics to cover protein domain family space. (United States)

    Dessailly, Benoît H; Nair, Rajesh; Jaroszewski, Lukasz; Fajardo, J Eduardo; Kouranov, Andrei; Lee, David; Fiser, Andras; Godzik, Adam; Rost, Burkhard; Orengo, Christine


    One major objective of structural genomics efforts, including the NIH-funded Protein Structure Initiative (PSI), has been to increase the structural coverage of protein sequence space. Here, we present the target selection strategy used during the second phase of PSI (PSI-2). This strategy, jointly devised by the bioinformatics groups associated with the PSI-2 large-scale production centers, targets representatives from large, structurally uncharacterized protein domain families, and from structurally uncharacterized subfamilies in very large and diverse families with incomplete structural coverage. These very large families are extremely diverse both structurally and functionally, and are highly overrepresented in known proteomes. On the basis of several metrics, we then discuss to what extent PSI-2, during its first 3 years, has increased the structural coverage of genomes, and contributed structural and functional novelty. Together, the results presented here suggest that PSI-2 is successfully meeting its objectives and provides useful insights into structural and functional space.

  19. A New Hidden Markov Model for Protein Quality Assessment Using Compatibility Between Protein Sequence and Structure. (United States)

    He, Zhiquan; Ma, Wenji; Zhang, Jingfen; Xu, Dong


    Protein structure Quality Assessment (QA) is an essential component in protein structure prediction and analysis. The relationship between protein sequence and structure often serves as a basis for protein structure QA. In this work, we developed a new Hidden Markov Model (HMM) to assess the compatibility of protein sequence and structure for capturing their complex relationship. More specifically, the emission of the HMM consists of protein local structures in angular space, secondary structures, and sequence profiles. This model has two capabilities: (1) encoding local structure of each position by jointly considering sequence and structure information, and (2) assigning a global score to estimate the overall quality of a predicted structure, as well as local scores to assess the quality of specific regions of a structure, which provides useful guidance for targeted structure refinement. We compared the HMM model to state-of-art single structure quality assessment methods OPUSCA, DFIRE, GOAP, and RW in protein structure selection. Computational results showed our new score HMM.Z can achieve better overall selection performance on the benchmark datasets.

  20. Predicting nucleic acid binding interfaces from structural models of proteins (United States)

    Dror, Iris; Shazman, Shula; Mukherjee, Srayanta; Zhang, Yang; Glaser, Fabian; Mandel-Gutfreund, Yael


    The function of DNA- and RNA-binding proteins can be inferred from the characterization and accurate prediction of their binding interfaces. However the main pitfall of various structure-based methods for predicting nucleic acid binding function is that they are all limited to a relatively small number of proteins for which high-resolution three dimensional structures are available. In this study, we developed a pipeline for extracting functional electrostatic patches from surfaces of protein structural models, obtained using the I-TASSER protein structure predictor. The largest positive patches are extracted from the protein surface using the patchfinder algorithm. We show that functional electrostatic patches extracted from an ensemble of structural models highly overlap the patches extracted from high-resolution structures. Furthermore, by testing our pipeline on a set of 55 known nucleic acid binding proteins for which I-TASSER produces high-quality models, we show that the method accurately identifies the nucleic acids binding interface on structural models of proteins. Employing a combined patch approach we show that patches extracted from an ensemble of models better predicts the real nucleic acid binding interfaces compared to patches extracted from independent models. Overall, these results suggest that combining information from a collection of low-resolution structural models could be a valuable approach for functional annotation. We suggest that our method will be further applicable for predicting other functional surfaces of proteins with unknown structure. PMID:22086767

  1. Predicting nucleic acid binding interfaces from structural models of proteins. (United States)

    Dror, Iris; Shazman, Shula; Mukherjee, Srayanta; Zhang, Yang; Glaser, Fabian; Mandel-Gutfreund, Yael


    The function of DNA- and RNA-binding proteins can be inferred from the characterization and accurate prediction of their binding interfaces. However, the main pitfall of various structure-based methods for predicting nucleic acid binding function is that they are all limited to a relatively small number of proteins for which high-resolution three-dimensional structures are available. In this study, we developed a pipeline for extracting functional electrostatic patches from surfaces of protein structural models, obtained using the I-TASSER protein structure predictor. The largest positive patches are extracted from the protein surface using the patchfinder algorithm. We show that functional electrostatic patches extracted from an ensemble of structural models highly overlap the patches extracted from high-resolution structures. Furthermore, by testing our pipeline on a set of 55 known nucleic acid binding proteins for which I-TASSER produces high-quality models, we show that the method accurately identifies the nucleic acids binding interface on structural models of proteins. Employing a combined patch approach we show that patches extracted from an ensemble of models better predicts the real nucleic acid binding interfaces compared with patches extracted from independent models. Overall, these results suggest that combining information from a collection of low-resolution structural models could be a valuable approach for functional annotation. We suggest that our method will be further applicable for predicting other functional surfaces of proteins with unknown structure. Copyright © 2011 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  2. Structural Studies of G Protein-Coupled Receptors. (United States)

    Zhang, Dandan; Zhao, Qiang; Wu, Beili


    G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) constitute the largest and the most physiologically important membrane protein family that recognizes a variety of environmental stimuli, and are drug targets in the treatment of numerous diseases. Recent progress on GPCR structural studies shed light on molecular mechanisms of GPCR ligand recognition, activation and allosteric modulation, as well as structural basis of GPCR dimerization. In this review, we will discuss the structural features of GPCRs and structural insights of different aspects of GPCR biological functions.

  3. Inflammatory Stroke Extracellular Vesicles Induce Macrophage Activation. (United States)

    Couch, Yvonne; Akbar, Naveed; Davis, Simon; Fischer, Roman; Dickens, Alex M; Neuhaus, Ain A; Burgess, Annette I; Rothwell, Peter M; Buchan, Alastair M


    Extracellular vesicles (EVs) are protein-lipid complexes released from cells, as well as actively exocytosed, as part of normal physiology, but also during pathological processes such as those occurring during a stroke. Our aim was to determine the inflammatory potential of stroke EVs. EVs were quantified and analyzed in the sera of patients after an acute stroke (inflammation in immune cells. © 2017 American Heart Association, Inc.

  4. Emerging Methods for Structural Analysis of Protein Aggregation. (United States)

    Khan, Eshan; Mishra, Subodh K; Kumar, Amit


    Protein misfolding and aggregation is a key attribute of different neurodegenerative diseases. Misfolded and aggregated proteins are intrinsically disordered and rule out structure based drug design. The comprehensive characterization of misfolded proteins and associated aggregation pathway is prerequisite to develop therapeutics for neurodegenerative diseases caused due to the protein aggregation. Visible protein aggregates used to be the final stage during aggregation mechanism. The structural analysis of intermediate steps in such protein aggregates will help us to discern the conformational role and subsequently involved pathways. The structural analysis of protein aggregation using various biophysical methods may aid for improved therapeutics for protein misfolding and aggregation related neurodegenerative diseases. In this mini review, we have summarized different spectroscopic methods such as fluorescence spectroscopy, circular dichroism (CD), nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy, Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR), and Raman spectroscopy for structural analysis of protein aggregation. We believe that the understanding of invisible intermediate of misfolded proteins and the key steps involved during protein aggregation mechanisms may advance the therapeutic approaches for targeting neurological diseases that are caused due to misfolded proteins. Copyright© Bentham Science Publishers; For any queries, please email at

  5. Host Proteins Determine MRSA Biofilm Structure and Integrity

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Dreier, Cindy; Nielsen, Astrid; Jørgensen, Nis Pedersen

    Human extracellular matrix (hECM) proteins aids the initial attachment and initiation of an infection, by specific binding to bacterial cell surface proteins. However, the importance of hECM proteins in structure, integrity and antibiotic resilience of a biofilm is unknown. This study aims to det...

  6. Protein folds and families: sequence and structure alignments. (United States)

    Holm, L; Sander, C


    Dali and HSSP are derived databases organizing protein space in the structurally known regions. We use an automatic structure alignment program (Dali) for the classification of all known 3D structures based on all-against-all comparison of 3D structures in the Protein Data Bank. The HSSP database associates 1D sequences with known 3D structures using a position-weighted dynamic programming method for sequence profile alignment (MaxHom). As a result, the HSSP database not only provides aligned sequence families, but also implies secondary and tertiary structures covering 36% of all sequences in Swiss-Prot. The structure classification by Dali and the sequence families in HSSP can be browsed jointly from a web interface providing a rich network of links between neighbours in fold space, between domains and proteins, and between structures and sequences. In particular, this results in a database of explicit multiple alignments of protein families in the twilight zone of sequence similarity. The organization of protein structures and families provides a map of the currently known regions of the protein universe that is useful for the analysis of folding principles, for the evolutionary unification of protein families and for maximizing the information return from experimental structure determination. The databases are available from

  7. TNF-? promotes extracellular vesicle release in mouse astrocytes through glutaminase


    Wang, Kaizhe; Ye, Ling; Lu, Hongfang; Chen, Huili; Zhang, Yanyan; Huang, Yunlong; Zheng, Jialin C.


    Background Extracellular vesicles (EVs) are membrane-contained vesicles shed from cells. EVs contain proteins, lipids, and nucleotides, all of which play important roles in intercellular communication. The release of EVs is known to increase during neuroinflammation. Glutaminase, a mitochondrial enzyme that converts glutamine to glutamate, has been implicated in the biogenesis of EVs. We have previously demonstrated that TNF-? promotes glutaminase expression in neurons. However, the expressio...

  8. DOCK/PIERR: web server for structure prediction of protein-protein complexes. (United States)

    Viswanath, Shruthi; Ravikant, D V S; Elber, Ron


    In protein docking we aim to find the structure of the complex formed when two proteins interact. Protein-protein interactions are crucial for cell function. Here we discuss the usage of DOCK/PIERR. In DOCK/PIERR, a uniformly discrete sampling of orientations of one protein with respect to the other, are scored, followed by clustering, refinement, and reranking of structures. The novelty of this method lies in the scoring functions used. These are obtained by examining hundreds of millions of correctly and incorrectly docked structures, using an algorithm based on mathematical programming, with provable convergence properties.

  9. Current strategies for protein production and purification enabling membrane protein structural biology. (United States)

    Pandey, Aditya; Shin, Kyungsoo; Patterson, Robin E; Liu, Xiang-Qin; Rainey, Jan K


    Membrane proteins are still heavily under-represented in the protein data bank (PDB), owing to multiple bottlenecks. The typical low abundance of membrane proteins in their natural hosts makes it necessary to overexpress these proteins either in heterologous systems or through in vitro translation/cell-free expression. Heterologous expression of proteins, in turn, leads to multiple obstacles, owing to the unpredictability of compatibility of the target protein for expression in a given host. The highly hydrophobic and (or) amphipathic nature of membrane proteins also leads to challenges in producing a homogeneous, stable, and pure sample for structural studies. Circumventing these hurdles has become possible through the introduction of novel protein production protocols; efficient protein isolation and sample preparation methods; and, improvement in hardware and software for structural characterization. Combined, these advances have made the past 10-15 years very exciting and eventful for the field of membrane protein structural biology, with an exponential growth in the number of solved membrane protein structures. In this review, we focus on both the advances and diversity of protein production and purification methods that have allowed this growth in structural knowledge of membrane proteins through X-ray crystallography, nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy, and cryo-electron microscopy (cryo-EM).

  10. Structural footprinting in protein structure comparison: the impact of structural fragments

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wilbur W John


    Full Text Available Abstract Background One approach for speeding-up protein structure comparison is the projection approach, where a protein structure is mapped to a high-dimensional vector and structural similarity is approximated by distance between the corresponding vectors. Structural footprinting methods are projection methods that employ the same general technique to produce the mapping: first select a representative set of structural fragments as models and then map a protein structure to a vector in which each dimension corresponds to a particular model and "counts" the number of times the model appears in the structure. The main difference between any two structural footprinting methods is in the set of models they use; in fact a large number of methods can be generated by varying the type of structural fragments used and the amount of detail in their representation. How do these choices affect the ability of the method to detect various types of structural similarity? Results To answer this question we benchmarked three structural footprinting methods that vary significantly in their selection of models against the CATH database. In the first set of experiments we compared the methods' ability to detect structural similarity characteristic of evolutionarily related structures, i.e., structures within the same CATH superfamily. In the second set of experiments we tested the methods' agreement with the boundaries imposed by classification groups at the Class, Architecture, and Fold levels of the CATH hierarchy. Conclusion In both experiments we found that the method which uses secondary structure information has the best performance on average, but no one method performs consistently the best across all groups at a given classification level. We also found that combining the methods' outputs significantly improves the performance. Moreover, our new techniques to measure and visualize the methods' agreement with the CATH hierarchy, including the

  11. Bayesian inference of protein structure from chemical shift data

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bratholm, Lars Andersen; Christensen, Anders Steen; Hamelryck, Thomas Wim


    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...... 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......, 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....

  12. Tactile Teaching: Exploring Protein Structure/Function Using Physical Models (United States)

    Herman, Tim; Morris, Jennifer; Colton, Shannon; Batiza, Ann; Patrick, Michael; Franzen, Margaret; Goodsell, David S.


    The technology now exists to construct physical models of proteins based on atomic coordinates of solved structures. We review here our recent experiences in using physical models to teach concepts of protein structure and function at both the high school and the undergraduate levels. At the high school level, physical models are used in a…

  13. The contact activation proteins: a structure/function overview

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Meijers, J. C.; McMullen, B. A.; Bouma, B. N.


    In recent years, extensive knowledge has been obtained on the structure/function relationships of blood coagulation proteins. In this overview, we present recent developments on the structure/function relationships of the contact activation proteins: factor XII, high molecular weight kininogen,

  14. Functional differentiation of proteins: implications for structural genomics. (United States)

    Friedberg, Iddo; Godzik, Adam


    Structural genomics is a broad initiative of various centers aiming to provide complete coverage of protein structure space. Because it is not feasible to experimentally determine the structures of all proteins, it is generally agreed that the only viable strategy to achieve such coverage is to carefully select specific proteins (targets), determine their structure experimentally, and then use comparative modeling techniques to model the rest. Here we suggest that structural genomics centers refine the structure-driven approach in target selection by adopting function-based criteria. We suggest targeting functionally divergent superfamilies within a given structural fold so that each function receives a structural characterization. We have developed a method to do so, and an itemized survey of several functionally rich folds shows that they are only partially functionally characterized. We call upon structural genomics centers to consider this approach and upon computational biologists to further develop function-based targeting methods.

  15. Using an alignment of fragment strings for comparing protein structures

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Friedberg, Iddo; Harder, Tim; Kolodny, Rachel


    MOTIVATION: Most methods that are used to compare protein structures use three-dimensional (3D) structural information. At the same time, it has been shown that a 1D string representation of local protein structure retains a degree of structural information. This type of representation can be a p....... The results of this study have immediate applications towards fast structure recognition, and for fold prediction and classification.......MOTIVATION: Most methods that are used to compare protein structures use three-dimensional (3D) structural information. At the same time, it has been shown that a 1D string representation of local protein structure retains a degree of structural information. This type of representation can...... be a powerful tool for protein structure comparison and classification, given the arsenal of sequence comparison tools developed by computational biology. However, in order to do so, there is a need to first understand how much information is contained in various possible 1D representations of protein structure...

  16. CMsearch: simultaneous exploration of protein sequence space and structure space improves not only protein homology detection but also protein structure prediction

    KAUST Repository

    Cui, Xuefeng


    Motivation: Protein homology detection, a fundamental problem in computational biology, is an indispensable step toward predicting protein structures and understanding protein functions. Despite the advances in recent decades on sequence alignment, threading and alignment-free methods, protein homology detection remains a challenging open problem. Recently, network methods that try to find transitive paths in the protein structure space demonstrate the importance of incorporating network information of the structure space. Yet, current methods merge the sequence space and the structure space into a single space, and thus introduce inconsistency in combining different sources of information. Method: We present a novel network-based protein homology detection method, CMsearch, based on cross-modal learning. Instead of exploring a single network built from the mixture of sequence and structure space information, CMsearch builds two separate networks to represent the sequence space and the structure space. It then learns sequence–structure correlation by simultaneously taking sequence information, structure information, sequence space information and structure space information into consideration. Results: We tested CMsearch on two challenging tasks, protein homology detection and protein structure prediction, by querying all 8332 PDB40 proteins. Our results demonstrate that CMsearch is insensitive to the similarity metrics used to define the sequence and the structure spaces. By using HMM–HMM alignment as the sequence similarity metric, CMsearch clearly outperforms state-of-the-art homology detection methods and the CASP-winning template-based protein structure prediction methods.

  17. Elliptical structure of phospholipid bilayer nanodiscs encapsulated by scaffold proteins

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Skar-Gislinge, Nicholas; Simonsen, Jens Bæk; Mortensen, Kell


    Phospholipid bilayers host and support the function of membrane proteins and may be stabilized in disc-like nanostructures, allowing for unprecedented solution studies of the assembly, structure, and function of membrane proteins (Bayburt et al. Nano Lett. 2002, 2, 853-856). Based on small-angle ...... the experimental scattering profile from nanodiscs. The model paves the way for future detailed structural studies of functional membrane proteins encapsulated in nanodiscs....

  18. The toolbox of vesicle sidedness determination

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Meszaros, Peter; Hoekstra, Dick; Kok, Jan Willem


    Vesicles prepared from cellular plasma membranes are widely used in science for different purposes. The outer membrane leaflet differs from the inner membrane leaflet of the vesicle, and during vesicle preparation procedures two types of vesicles will be generated: right-side-out vesicles, of which

  19. The Structural Characterization of Tumor Fusion Genes and Proteins. (United States)

    Wang, Dandan; Li, Daixi; Qin, Guangrong; Zhang, Wen; Ouyang, Jian; Zhang, Menghuan; Xie, Lu


    Chromosomal translocation, which generates fusion proteins in blood tumor or solid tumor, is considered as one of the major causes leading to cancer. Recent studies suggested that the disordered fragments in a fusion protein might contribute to its carcinogenicity. Here, we investigated the sequence feature near the breakpoints in the fusion partner genes, the structure features of breakpoints in fusion proteins, and the posttranslational modification preference in the fusion proteins. Results show that the breakpoints in the fusion partner genes have both sequence preference and structural preference. At the sequence level, nucleotide combination AG is preferred before the breakpoint and GG is preferred at the breakpoint. At the structural level, the breakpoints in the fusion proteins prefer to be located in the disordered regions. Further analysis suggests the phosphorylation sites at serine, threonine, and the methylation sites at arginine are enriched in disordered regions of the fusion proteins. Using EML4-ALK as an example, we further explained how the fusion protein leads to the protein disorder and contributes to its carcinogenicity. The sequence and structural features of the fusion proteins may help the scientific community to predict novel breakpoints in fusion genes and better understand the structure and function of fusion proteins.

  20. Proteomic analysis of cerebrospinal fluid extracellular vesicles: a comprehensive dataset. (United States)

    Chiasserini, Davide; van Weering, Jan R T; Piersma, Sander R; Pham, Thang V; Malekzadeh, Arjan; Teunissen, Charlotte E; de Wit, Heidi; Jiménez, Connie R


    Extracellular vesicles (EVs) are present in human cerebrospinal fluid (CSF), yet little is known about their protein composition. The aim of this study is to provide a comprehensive analysis of the proteome of CSF EVs by electron microscopy and high resolution tandem mass spectrometry (MS/MS) in conjunction with bioinformatics. We report an extensive catalog of 1315 proteins identified in EVs isolated from two different CSF pools by ultracentrifugation, including 230 novel EV proteins. Out of 1315 proteins, 760 were identified in both CSF pools and about 30% of those were also quantitatively enriched in the EV fraction versus the soluble CSF fraction. The proteome of CSF EVs was enriched in exosomal markers such as alix and syntenin-1, heat shock proteins and tetraspanins and contained a high proportion of brain-derived proteins (n=373). Interestingly, several known biomarkers for neurodegenerative diseases such as the amyloid precursor protein, the prion protein and DJ-1 were identified in the EV fractions. Our dataset represents the first comprehensive inventory of the EV proteome in CSF, underscoring the biomarker potential of this organelle. Further comparative studies on CSF EVs isolated from patients diagnosed with neurological disorders are warranted. Data are available via ProteomeXchange with identifier PXD000608. Biological significance In this study we analyzed the protein composition of extracellular vesicles isolated from pooled samples of human cerebrospinal fluid (CSF). CSF is a colorless fluid surrounding the brain and the spinal cord, important for the physiology of the central nervous system, ensuing mechanical protection, regulation of brain blood flow and elimination of byproducts of the brain. Since brain (patho)physiology is reflected in CSF, this biological fluid represents an ideal source of soluble and vesicle-based biomarkers for neurological diseases. Here we confirm the presence of exosome-like extracellular vesicles in CSF, underscoring

  1. The Structural Characterization of Tumor Fusion Genes and Proteins


    Wang, Dandan; Li, Daixi; Qin, Guangrong; Zhang, Wen; Ouyang, Jian; Zhang, Menghuan; Xie, Lu


    Chromosomal translocation, which generates fusion proteins in blood tumor or solid tumor, is considered as one of the major causes leading to cancer. Recent studies suggested that the disordered fragments in a fusion protein might contribute to its carcinogenicity. Here, we investigated the sequence feature near the breakpoints in the fusion partner genes, the structure features of breakpoints in fusion proteins, and the posttranslational modification preference in the fusion proteins. Result...

  2. Structure of Dehydroergosterol Monohydrate and Interaction with Sterol Carrier Protein-2 (United States)

    McIntosh, Avery L.; Atshaves, Barbara P.; Gallegos, Adalberto M.; Storey, Stephen M.; Reibenspies, Joseph H.; Kier, Ann B.; Meyer, Edgar; Schroeder, Friedhelm


    Dehydroergosterol [ergosta-5,7,9(11),22-tetraen-3β-ol] is a naturally-occurring, fluorescent sterol utilized extensively to probe membrane cholesterol distribution, cholesterol-protein interactions, and intracellular cholesterol transport both in vitro and in vivo. In aqueous solutions, the low solubility of dehydroergosterol results in the formation of monohydrate crystals similar to cholesterol. Low temperature x-ray diffraction analysis reveals that dehydroergosterol monohydrate crystallizes in the space group P21 with 4 molecules in the unit cell and monoclinic crystal parameters a = 9.975(1)Å, b = 7.4731(9)Å, c = 34.054(4)Å, and β = 92.970(2)° somewhat similar to ergosterol monohydrate. The molecular arrangement is in a slightly closer packed bilayer structure resembling cholesterol monohydrate. Since dehydroergosterol fluorescence emission undergoes a quantum yield enhancement and red-shift of its maximum wavelength when crystallized, formation or disruption of microcrystals was monitored with high sensitivity using cuvette-based spectroscopy and multi-photon laser scanning imaging microscopy (MPLSM). This manuscript reports on the dynamical effect of sterol carrier protein-2 (SCP-2) interacting between aqueous dispersions of dehydroergosterol monohydrate microcrystal donors and acceptors consisting not only of model membranes but also vesicles derived from plasma membranes isolated by biochemical fractionation and affinity purification from Madin-Darby canine kidney cells. Furthermore, this study provides real-time measurements of the effect of increased SCP-2 levels on the rate of disappearance of dehydroergosterol microcrystals in living cells. PMID:19020914

  3. Proteomic profiling of extracellular vesicles released from vascular smooth muscle cells during initiation of phosphate-induced mineralization. (United States)

    Chaudhary, Sandeep C; Khalid, Sana; Smethurst, Victoria; Monier, Daisy; Mobley, James; Huet, Alexis; Conway, James F; Napierala, Dobrawa


    Elevated serum phosphate is one of the major factors contributing to vascular calcification. Studies suggested that extracellular vesicles released from vascular smooth muscle cells significantly contribute to the initiation and progression of this pathology. Recently, we have demonstrated that elevated phosphate stimulates release of extracellular vesicles from osteogenic cells at the initiation of the mineralization process. Here, we used MOVAS cell line as an in vitro model of vascular calcification to examine whether vascular smooth muscle cells respond to high phosphate levels in a similar way and increase formation of extracellular vesicles. Vesicles residing in extracellular matrix as well as vesicles released to culture medium were evaluated by nanoparticle tracking analyses. In addition, using mass spectrometry and protein profiling, protein composition of extracellular vesicles released by MOVAS cells under standard growth conditions and upon exposure to high phosphate was compared. Significant increase of the number of extracellular vesicles was detected after 72 hours of exposure of cells to high phosphate. Elevated phosphate levels also affected protein composition of extracellular vesicles released from MOVAS cells. Finally, the comparative analyses of proteins in extracellular vesicles isolated from extracellular matrix and from conditioned medium identified significant differences in protein composition in these two groups of extracellular vesicles. In conclusion, results of this study demonstrate that exposure of MOVAS cells to high phosphate levels stimulates the release of extracellular vesicles and changes their protein composition.

  4. Emergent properties of extracellular vesicles: a holistic approach to decode the complexity of intercellular communication networks. (United States)

    Gho, Yong Song; Lee, Changjin


    Shedding of nano-sized bilayered extracellular vesicles and extracellular vesicle-mediated intercellular communication are evolutionarily conserved biological processes. Communication between cells and the environment is an essential process in living organisms and dysregulation of intercellular communication leads to various diseases. Thus, systematic studies on extracellular vesicles, also known as exosomes, microvesicles, and outer membrane vesicles, are critical for a deeper understanding of intercellular communication networks that are crucial for decoding the exact causes of various difficult-to-cure diseases. Recent progress in this emerging field reveals that extracellular vesicles are endogenous carriers of specific subsets of proteins, mRNAs, miRNAs, and other bioactive materials, as well as play diverse pathophysiological roles. However, certain issues regarding diverse subtypes and the complex pathophysiological roles of extracellular vesicles are not yet clearly elucidated. In this review, we first briefly introduce the complexity of extracellular vesicles in terms of their vesicular cargos and protein-protein interaction networks, their diverse subtypes, and multifaceted pathophysiological functions. Then, we introduce the limitation of reductionist approaches in understanding the complexity of extracellular vesicles. We finally suggest that molecular systems biology approaches based on the concept of emergent properties are essential for a comprehensive understanding of the complex pathophysiological functions of heterogeneous extracellular vesicles, either at the single vesicle level or at a systems level as a whole.

  5. Structural genomics plucks high-hanging membrane proteins. (United States)

    Kloppmann, Edda; Punta, Marco; Rost, Burkhard


    Recent years have seen the establishment of structural genomics centers that explicitly target integral membrane proteins. Here, we review the advances in targeting these extremely high-hanging fruits of structural biology in high-throughput mode. We observe that the experimental determination of high-resolution structures of integral membrane proteins is increasingly successful both in terms of getting structures and of covering important protein families, for example, from Pfam. Structural genomics has begun to contribute significantly toward this progress. An important component of this contribution is the set up of robotic pipelines that generate a wealth of experimental data for membrane proteins. We argue that prediction methods for the identification of membrane regions and for the comparison of membrane proteins largely suffice to meet the challenges of target selection for structural genomics of membrane proteins. In contrast, we need better methods to prioritize the most promising members in a family of closely related proteins and to annotate protein function from sequence and structure in absence of homology. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  6. Vesicle fusion with bilayer lipid membrane controlled by electrostatic interaction

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Azusa Oshima


    Full Text Available The fusion of proteoliposomes is a promising approach for incorporating membrane proteins in artificial lipid membranes. In this study, we employed an electrostatic interaction between vesicles and supported bilayer lipid membranes (s-BLMs to control the fusion process. We combined large unilamellar vesicles (LUVs containing anionic lipids, which we used instead of proteoliposomes, and s-BLMs containing cationic lipids to control electrostatic interaction. Anionic LUVs were never adsorbed or ruptured on the SiO2 substrate with a slight negative charge, and selectively fused with cationic s-BLMs. The LUVs can be fused effectively to the target position. Furthermore, as the vesicle fusion proceeds and some of the positive charges are neutralized, the attractive interaction weakens and finally the vesicle fusion saturates. In other words, we can control the number of LUVs fused with s-BLMs by controlling the concentration of the cationic lipids in the s-BLMs. The fluidity of the s-BLMs after vesicle fusion was confirmed to be sufficiently high. This indicates that the LUVs attached to the s-BLMs were almost completely fused, and there were few intermediate state vesicles in the fusion process. We could control the position and amount of vesicle fusion with the s-BLMs by employing an electrostatic interaction.

  7. Tomosyn inhibits synaptic vesicle priming in Caenorhabditis elegans.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elena O Gracheva


    Full Text Available Caenorhabditis elegans TOM-1 is orthologous to vertebrate tomosyn, a cytosolic syntaxin-binding protein implicated in the modulation of both constitutive and regulated exocytosis. To investigate how TOM-1 regulates exocytosis of synaptic vesicles in vivo, we analyzed C. elegans tom-1 mutants. Our electrophysiological analysis indicates that evoked postsynaptic responses at tom-1 mutant synapses are prolonged leading to a two-fold increase in total charge transfer. The enhanced response in tom-1 mutants is not associated with any detectable changes in postsynaptic response kinetics, neuronal outgrowth, or synaptogenesis. However, at the ultrastructural level, we observe a concomitant increase in the number of plasma membrane-contacting vesicles in tom-1 mutant synapses, a phenotype reversed by neuronal expression of TOM-1. Priming defective unc-13 mutants show a dramatic reduction in plasma membrane-contacting vesicles, suggesting these vesicles largely represent the primed vesicle pool at the C. elegans neuromuscular junction. Consistent with this conclusion, hyperosmotic responses in tom-1 mutants are enhanced, indicating the primed vesicle pool is enhanced. Furthermore, the synaptic defects of unc-13 mutants are partially suppressed in tom-1 unc-13 double mutants. These data indicate that in the intact nervous system, TOM-1 negatively regulates synaptic vesicle priming.

  8. Single-step isolation of extracellular vesicles by size-exclusion chromatography

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Böing, Anita N.; van der Pol, Edwin; Grootemaat, Anita E.; Coumans, Frank A. W.; Sturk, Auguste; Nieuwland, Rienk


    Isolation of extracellular vesicles from plasma is a challenge due to the presence of proteins and lipoproteins. Isolation of vesicles using differential centrifugation or density-gradient ultracentrifugation results in co-isolation of contaminants such as protein aggregates and incomplete

  9. Antibody Binding Alters the Characteristics and Contents of Extracellular Vesicles Released by Histoplasma capsulatum. (United States)

    Matos Baltazar, Ludmila; Nakayasu, Ernesto S; Sobreira, Tiago J P; Choi, Hyungwon; Casadevall, Arturo; Nimrichter, Leonardo; Nosanchuk, Joshua D


    Histoplasma capsulatum produces extracellular vesicles containing virulence-associated molecules capable of modulating host machinery, benefiting the pathogen. Treatment of H. capsulatum cells with monoclonal antibodies (MAbs) can change the outcome of infection in mice. We evaluated the sizes, enzymatic contents, and proteomic profiles of the vesicles released by fungal cells treated with either protective MAb 6B7 (IgG1) or nonprotective MAb 7B6 (IgG2b), both of which bind H. capsulatum heat shock protein 60 (Hsp60). Our results showed that treatment with either MAb was associated with changes in size and vesicle loading. MAb treatments reduced vesicle phosphatase and catalase activities compared to those of vesicles from untreated controls. We identified 1,125 proteins in vesicles, and 250 of these manifested differences in abundance relative to that of proteins in vesicles isolated from yeast cells exposed to Hsp60-binding MAbs, indicating that surface binding of fungal cells by MAbs modified protein loading in the vesicles. The abundance of upregulated proteins in vesicles upon MAb 7B6 treatment was 44.8% of the protein quantities in vesicles from fungal cells treated with MAb 6B7. Analysis of orthologous proteins previously identified in vesicles from other fungi showed that different ascomycete fungi have similar proteins in their extracellular milieu, many of which are associated with virulence. Our results demonstrate that antibody binding can modulate fungal cell responses, resulting in differential loading of vesicles, which could alter fungal cell susceptibility to host defenses. This finding provides additional evidence that antibody binding modulates microbial physiology and suggests a new function for specific immunoglobulins through alterations of fungal secretion. IMPORTANCE Diverse fungal species release extracellular vesicles, indicating that this is a common pathway for the delivery of molecules to the extracellular space. However, there has

  10. Continuum secondary structure captures protein flexibility

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Anderson, C.A.F.; Palmer, A.G.; Brunak, Søren


    with different hydrogen bond thresholds. The final continuous assignment for a single NMR model successfully reflected the structural variations observed between all NMR models in the ensemble. The structural variations between NMR models were verified to correlate with thermal motion; these variations were...... captured by the continuous assignments. Because the continuous assignment reproduces the structural variation between many NMR models from one single model, functionally important variation can be extracted from a single X-ray structure. Thus, continuous assignments of secondary structure may affect future...

  11. Exposure to static magnetic fields increases insulin secretion in rat INS-1 cells by activating the transcription of the insulin gene and up-regulating the expression of vesicle-secreted proteins. (United States)

    Mao, Libin; Wang, Huiqin; Ma, Fenghui; Guo, Zhixia; He, Hongpeng; Zhou, Hao; Wang, Nan


    To evaluate the effect of static magnetic fields (SMFs) on insulin secretion and explore the mechanisms underlying exposure to SMF-induced insulin secretion in rat insulinoma INS-1 cells. INS-1 cells were exposed to a 400 mT SMF for 72 h, and the proliferation of INS-1 cells was detected by (3-(4,5-dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-2,5-diphenyltetrazolium bromide (MTT) assay. The secretion of insulin was measured with an enzyme linked immunosorbent assays (ELISA), the expression of genes was detected by real-time PCR, and the expression of proteins was measured by Western blotting. Exposure to an SMF increased the expression and secretion of insulin by INS-1 cells but did not affect cell proliferation. Moreover, SMF exposure up-regulated the expression of several pancreas-specific transcriptional factors. Specifically, the activity of the rat insulin promoter was enhanced in INS-1 cells exposed to an SMF, and the expression levels of synaptosomal-associated protein 25 (SNAP-25) and syntaxin-1A were up-regulated after exposure to an SMF. SMF exposure can promote insulin secretion in rat INS-1 cells by activating the transcription of the insulin gene and up-regulating the expression of vesicle-secreted proteins.

  12. Comparative Study of Extracellular Vesicles from the Urine of Healthy Individuals and Prostate Cancer Patients. (United States)

    Bryzgunova, Olga E; Zaripov, Marat M; Skvortsova, Tatyana E; Lekchnov, Evgeny A; Grigor'eva, Alina E; Zaporozhchenko, Ivan A; Morozkin, Evgeny S; Ryabchikova, Elena I; Yurchenko, Yuri B; Voitsitskiy, Vladimir E; Laktionov, Pavel P


    Recent studies suggest that extracellular vesicles may be the key to timely diagnosis and monitoring of genito-urological malignancies. In this study we investigated the composition and content of extracellular vesicles found in the urine of healthy donors and prostate cancer patients. Urine of 14 PCa patients and 20 healthy volunteers was clarified by low-speed centrifugation and total extracellular vesicles fraction was obtain by high-speed centrifugation. The exosome-enriched fraction was obtained by filtration of total extracellular vesicles through a 0.1 μm pore filter. Transmission electron microscopy showed that cell-free urine in both groups contained vesicles from 20 to 230 nm. Immunogold staining after ultrafiltration demonstrated that 95% and 90% of extracellular vesicles in healthy individuals and cancer patients, respectively, were exosomes. Protein, DNA and RNA concentrations as well as size distribution of extracellular vesicles in both fractions were analyzed. Only 75% of the total protein content of extracellular vesicles was associated with exosomes which amounted to 90-95% of all vesicles. Median DNA concentrations in total extracellular vesicles and exosome-enriched fractions were 18 pg/ml and 2.6 pg/ml urine, correspondingly. Urine extracellular vesicles carried a population of RNA molecules 25 nt to 200 nt in concentration of no more than 290 pg/ml of urine. Additionally, concentrations of miR-19b, miR-25, miR-125b, and miR-205 were quantified by qRT-PCR. MiRNAs were shown to be differently distributed between different fractions of extracellular vesicles. Detection of miR-19b versus miR-16 in total vesicles and exosome-enriched fractions achieved 100%/93% and 95%/79% specificity/sensitivity in distinguishing cancer patients from healthy individuals, respectively, demonstrating the diagnostic value of urine extracellular vesicles.

  13. Structural Aspects of GPCR-G Protein Coupling. (United States)

    Chung, Ka Young


    G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) are membrane receptors; approximately 40% of drugs on the market target GPCRs. A precise understanding of the activation mechanism of GPCRs would facilitate the development of more effective and less toxic drugs. Heterotrimeric G proteins are important molecular switches in GPCR-mediated signal transduction. An agonist-activated receptor interacts with specific sites on G proteins and promotes the release of GDP from the Gα subunit. Because of the important biological role of the GPCR-G protein coupling, conformational changes in the G protein upon receptor coupling have been of great interest. One of the most important questions was the interface between the GPCR and G proteins and the structural mechanism of GPCR-induced G protein activation. A number of biochemical and biophysical studies have been performed since the late 80s to address these questions; there was a significant breakthrough in 2011 when the crystal structure of a GPCR-G protein complex was solved. This review discusses the structural aspects of GPCR-G protein coupling by comparing the results of previous biochemical and biophysical studies to the GPCR-G protein crystal structure.

  14. Computational protein design quantifies structural constraints on amino acid covariation.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Noah Ollikainen

    Full Text Available Amino acid covariation, where the identities of amino acids at different sequence positions are correlated, is a hallmark of naturally occurring proteins. This covariation can arise from multiple factors, including selective pressures for maintaining protein structure, requirements imposed by a specific function, or from phylogenetic sampling bias. Here we employed flexible backbone computational protein design to quantify the extent to which protein structure has constrained amino acid covariation for 40 diverse protein domains. We find significant similarities between the amino acid covariation in alignments of natural protein sequences and sequences optimized for their structures by computational protein design methods. These results indicate that the structural constraints imposed by protein architecture play a dominant role in shaping amino acid covariation and that computational protein design methods can capture these effects. We also find that the similarity between natural and designed covariation is sensitive to the magnitude and mechanism of backbone flexibility used in computational protein design. Our results thus highlight the necessity of including backbone flexibility to correctly model precise details of correlated amino acid changes and give insights into the pressures underlying these correlations.

  15. Using linear algebra for protein structural comparison and classification (United States)


    In this article, we describe a novel methodology to extract semantic characteristics from protein structures using linear algebra in order to compose structural signature vectors which may be used efficiently to compare and classify protein structures into fold families. These signatures are built from the pattern of hydrophobic intrachain interactions using Singular Value Decomposition (SVD) and Latent Semantic Indexing (LSI) techniques. Considering proteins as documents and contacts as terms, we have built a retrieval system which is able to find conserved contacts in samples of myoglobin fold family and to retrieve these proteins among proteins of varied folds with precision of up to 80%. The classifier is a web tool available at our laboratory website. Users can search for similar chains from a specific PDB, view and compare their contact maps and browse their structures using a JMol plug-in. PMID:21637532

  16. Constraining cyclic peptides to mimic protein structure motifs

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hill, Timothy A.; Shepherd, Nicholas E.; Diness, Frederik


    Many proteins exert their biological activities through small exposed surface regions called epitopes that are folded peptides of well-defined three-dimensional structures. Short synthetic peptide sequences corresponding to these bioactive protein surfaces do not form thermodynamically stable...... protein-like structures in water. However, short peptides can be induced to fold into protein-like bioactive conformations (strands, helices, turns) by cyclization, in conjunction with the use of other molecular constraints, that helps to fine-tune three-dimensional structure. Such constrained cyclic...... peptides can have protein-like biological activities and potencies, enabling their uses as biological probes and leads to therapeutics, diagnostics and vaccines. This Review highlights examples of cyclic peptides that mimic three-dimensional structures of strand, turn or helical segments of peptides...

  17. Using linear algebra for protein structural comparison and classification

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Janaína Gomide


    Full Text Available In this article, we describe a novel methodology to extract semantic characteristics from protein structures using linear algebra in order to compose structural signature vectors which may be used efficiently to compare and classify protein structures into fold families. These signatures are built from the pattern of hydrophobic intrachain interactions using Singular Value Decomposition (SVD and Latent Semantic Indexing (LSI techniques. Considering proteins as documents and contacts as terms, we have built a retrieval system which is able to find conserved contacts in samples of myoglobin fold family and to retrieve these proteins among proteins of varied folds with precision of up to 80%. The classifier is a web tool available at our laboratory website. Users can search for similar chains from a specific PDB, view and compare their contact maps and browse their structures using a JMol plug-in.

  18. Using linear algebra for protein structural comparison and classification. (United States)

    Gomide, Janaína; Melo-Minardi, Raquel; Dos Santos, Marcos Augusto; Neshich, Goran; Meira, Wagner; Lopes, Júlio César; Santoro, Marcelo


    In this article, we describe a novel methodology to extract semantic characteristics from protein structures using linear algebra in order to compose structural signature vectors which may be used efficiently to compare and classify protein structures into fold families. These signatures are built from the pattern of hydrophobic intrachain interactions using Singular Value Decomposition (SVD) and Latent Semantic Indexing (LSI) techniques. Considering proteins as documents and contacts as terms, we have built a retrieval system which is able to find conserved contacts in samples of myoglobin fold family and to retrieve these proteins among proteins of varied folds with precision of up to 80%. The classifier is a web tool available at our laboratory website. Users can search for similar chains from a specific PDB, view and compare their contact maps and browse their structures using a JMol plug-in.

  19. α-Synuclein can inhibit SNARE-mediated vesicle fusion through direct interactions with lipid bilayers. (United States)

    DeWitt, David C; Rhoades, Elizabeth


    The native function of α-synuclein is thought to involve regulation of synaptic vesicle trafficking. Recent work has also implicated a role in neurotransmission, possibly through interactions with the proteins involved in synaptic vesicle fusion. Here, we demonstrate that α-synuclein inhibits SNARE-mediated vesicle fusion through binding the membrane, without a direct interaction between α-synuclein and any of the SNARE proteins. This work supports a model in which α-synuclein plays a role in the regulation of vesicle fusion by modulating properties of the lipid bilayer.

  20. Structural and Energetic Characterization of the Ankyrin Repeat Protein Family.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    R Gonzalo Parra


    Full Text Available Ankyrin repeat containing proteins are one of the most abundant solenoid folds. Usually implicated in specific protein-protein interactions, these proteins are readily amenable for design, with promising biotechnological and biomedical applications. Studying repeat protein families presents technical challenges due to the high sequence divergence among the repeating units. We developed and applied a systematic method to consistently identify and annotate the structural repetitions over the members of the complete Ankyrin Repeat Protein Family, with increased sensitivity over previous studies. We statistically characterized the number of repeats, the folding of the repeat-arrays, their structural variations, insertions and deletions. An energetic analysis of the local frustration patterns reveal the basic features underlying fold stability and its relation to the functional binding regions. We found a strong linear correlation between the conservation of the energetic features in the repeat arrays and their sequence variations, and discuss new insights into the organization and function of these ubiquitous proteins.

  1. Integral membrane protein structure determination using pseudocontact shifts. (United States)

    Crick, Duncan J; Wang, Jue X; Graham, Bim; Swarbrick, James D; Mott, Helen R; Nietlispach, Daniel


    Obtaining enough experimental restraints can be a limiting factor in the NMR structure determination of larger proteins. This is particularly the case for large assemblies such as membrane proteins that have been solubilized in a membrane-mimicking environment. Whilst in such cases extensive deuteration strategies are regularly utilised with the aim to improve the spectral quality, these schemes often limit the number of NOEs obtainable, making complementary strategies highly beneficial for successful structure elucidation. Recently, lanthanide-induced pseudocontact shifts (PCSs) have been established as a structural tool for globular proteins. Here, we demonstrate that a PCS-based approach can be successfully applied for the structure determination of integral membrane proteins. Using the 7TM α-helical microbial receptor pSRII, we show that PCS-derived restraints from lanthanide binding tags attached to four different positions of the protein facilitate the backbone structure determination when combined with a limited set of NOEs. In contrast, the same set of NOEs fails to determine the correct 3D fold. The latter situation is frequently encountered in polytopical α-helical membrane proteins and a PCS approach is thus suitable even for this particularly challenging class of membrane proteins. The ease of measuring PCSs makes this an attractive route for structure determination of large membrane proteins in general.

  2. Integral membrane protein structure determination using pseudocontact shifts

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Crick, Duncan J.; Wang, Jue X. [University of Cambridge, Department of Biochemistry (United Kingdom); Graham, Bim; Swarbrick, James D. [Monash University, Monash Institute of Pharmaceutical Sciences (Australia); Mott, Helen R.; Nietlispach, Daniel, E-mail: [University of Cambridge, Department of Biochemistry (United Kingdom)


    Obtaining enough experimental restraints can be a limiting factor in the NMR structure determination of larger proteins. This is particularly the case for large assemblies such as membrane proteins that have been solubilized in a membrane-mimicking environment. Whilst in such cases extensive deuteration strategies are regularly utilised with the aim to improve the spectral quality, these schemes often limit the number of NOEs obtainable, making complementary strategies highly beneficial for successful structure elucidation. Recently, lanthanide-induced pseudocontact shifts (PCSs) have been established as a structural tool for globular proteins. Here, we demonstrate that a PCS-based approach can be successfully applied for the structure determination of integral membrane proteins. Using the 7TM α-helical microbial receptor pSRII, we show that PCS-derived restraints from lanthanide binding tags attached to four different positions of the protein facilitate the backbone structure determination when combined with a limited set of NOEs. In contrast, the same set of NOEs fails to determine the correct 3D fold. The latter situation is frequently encountered in polytopical α-helical membrane proteins and a PCS approach is thus suitable even for this particularly challenging class of membrane proteins. The ease of measuring PCSs makes this an attractive route for structure determination of large membrane proteins in general.

  3. Membrane structure formation induced by two types of banana-shaped proteins (United States)

    Noguchi, Hiroshi; Fournier, Jean-Baptiste

    The assembly of banana-shaped rodlike proteins on membranes, and the associated membrane shape transformations, are investigated by analytical theory and coarse-grained simulations. The membrane-mediated interactions between two banana-shaped inclusions are derived theoretically using a point-like formalism based on fixed anisotropic curvatures, both for zero surface tension and for finite surface tension. On a larger scale, the interactions between assemblies of such rodlike inclusions are determined analytically. Meshless membrane simulations are performed in the presence of a large number of inclusions of two types, corresponding to curved rods of opposite curvatures, both for flat membranes and vesicles. Rods of the same type aggregate into linear assemblies perpendicular to the rod axis, leading to membrane tubulation. However, rods of the other type, those of opposite curvature, are attracted to the lateral sides of these assemblies, and stabilize a straight bump structure that prevents tubulation. When the two types of rods have almost opposite curvatures, the bumps attract one another, forming a stripe structure. Positive surface tension is found to stabilize the stripe formation. The simulation results agree well with the theoretical predictions provided the point-like curvatures of the model are scaled-down to account for the effective flexibility of the simulated rods.

  4. High-Throughput Characterization of Intrinsic Disorder in Proteins from the Protein Structure Initiative (United States)

    Johnson, Derrick E.; Xue, Bin; Sickmeier, Megan D.; Meng, Jingwei; Cortese, Marc S.; Oldfield, Christopher J.; Le Gall, Tanguy; Dunker, A. Keith; Uversky, Vladimir N.


    The identification of intrinsically disordered proteins (IDPs) among the targets that fail to form satisfactory crystal structures in the Protein Structure Initiative represent a key to reducing the costs and time for determining three-dimensional structures of proteins. To help in this endeavor, several Protein Structure Initiative Centers were asked to send samples of both crystallizable proteins and proteins that failed to crystallize. The abundance of intrinsic disorder in these proteins was evaluated via computational analysis using Predictors of Natural Disordered Regions (PONDR®) and the potential cleavage sites and corresponding fragments were determined. Then, the target proteins were analyzed for intrinsic disorder by their resistance to limited proteolysis. The rates of tryptic digestion of sample target proteins were compared to those of lysozyme/myoglobin, apo-myoglobin and α-casein as standards of ordered, partially disordered and completely disordered proteins, respectively. At the next stage, the protein samples were subjected to both far-UV and near-UV circular dichroism (CD) analysis. For most of the samples, a good agreement between CD data, predictions of disorder and the rates of limited tryptic digestion was established. Further experimentation is being performed on a smaller subset of these samples in order to obtain more detailed information on the ordered/disordered nature of the proteins. PMID:22651963

  5. Protein Evolution along Phylogenetic Histories under Structurally Constrained Substitution Models (United States)

    Arenas, Miguel; Dos Santos, Helena G.; Posada, David; Bastolla, Ugo


    Motivation Models of molecular evolution aim at describing the evolutionary processes at the molecular level. However, current models rarely incorporate information from protein structure. Conversely, structure-based models of protein evolution have not been commonly applied to simulate sequence evolution in a phylogenetic framework and they often ignore relevant evolutionary processes such as recombination. A simulation evolutionary framework that integrates substitution models that account for protein structure stability should be able to generate more realistic in silico evolved proteins for a variety of purposes. Results We developed a method to simulate protein evolution that combines models of protein folding stability, such that the fitness depends on the stability of the native state both with respect to unfolding and misfolding, with phylogenetic histories that can be either specified by the user or simulated with the coalescent under complex evolutionary scenarios including recombination, demographics and migration. We have implemented this framework in a computer program called ProteinEvolver. Remarkably, comparing these models with empirical amino acid replacement models, we found that the former produce amino acid distributions closer to distributions observed in real protein families, and proteins that are predicted to be more stable. Therefore, we conclude that evolutionary models that consider protein stability and realistic evolutionary histories constitute a better approximation of the real evolutionary process. Availability ProteinEvolver is written in C, can run in parallel, and is freely available from PMID:24037213

  6. Validation of protein structure models using network similarity score. (United States)

    Ghosh, Sambit; Gadiyaram, Vasundhara; Vishveshwara, Saraswathi


    Accurate structural validation of proteins is of extreme importance in studies like protein structure prediction, analysis of molecular dynamic simulation trajectories and finding subtle changes in very similar structures. The benchmarks for today's structure validation are scoring methods like global distance test-total structure (GDT-TS), TM-score and root mean square deviations (RMSD). However, there is a lack of methods that look at both the protein backbone and side-chain structures at the global connectivity level and provide information about the differences in connectivity. To address this gap, a graph spectral based method (NSS-network similarity score) which has been recently developed to rigorously compare networks in diverse fields, is adopted to compare protein structures both at the backbone and at the side-chain noncovalent connectivity levels. In this study, we validate the performance of NSS by investigating protein structures from X-ray structures, modeling (including CASP models), and molecular dynamics simulations. Further, we systematically identify the local and the global regions of the structures contributing to the difference in NSS, through the components of the score, a feature unique to this spectral based scoring scheme. It is demonstrated that the method can quantify subtle differences in connectivity compared to a reference protein structure and can form a robust basis for protein structure comparison. Additionally, we have also introduced a network-based method to analyze fluctuations in side chain interactions (edge-weights) in an ensemble of structures, which can be an useful tool for the analysis of MD trajectories. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  7. PSPP: a protein structure prediction pipeline for computing clusters.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michael S Lee

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Protein structures are critical for understanding the mechanisms of biological systems and, subsequently, for drug and vaccine design. Unfortunately, protein sequence data exceed structural data by a factor of more than 200 to 1. This gap can be partially filled by using computational protein structure prediction. While structure prediction Web servers are a notable option, they often restrict the number of sequence queries and/or provide a limited set of prediction methodologies. Therefore, we present a standalone protein structure prediction software package suitable for high-throughput structural genomic applications that performs all three classes of prediction methodologies: comparative modeling, fold recognition, and ab initio. This software can be deployed on a user's own high-performance computing cluster. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: The pipeline consists of a Perl core that integrates more than 20 individual software packages and databases, most of which are freely available from other research laboratories. The query protein sequences are first divided into domains either by domain boundary recognition or Bayesian statistics. The structures of the individual domains are then predicted using template-based modeling or ab initio modeling. The predicted models are scored with a statistical potential and an all-atom force field. The top-scoring ab initio models are annotated by structural comparison against the Structural Classification of Proteins (SCOP fold database. Furthermore, secondary structure, solvent accessibility, transmembrane helices, and structural disorder are predicted. The results are generated in text, tab-delimited, and hypertext markup language (HTML formats. So far, the pipeline has been used to study viral and bacterial proteomes. CONCLUSIONS: The standalone pipeline that we introduce here, unlike protein structure prediction Web servers, allows users to devote their own computing assets to process a

  8. Protein contact maps: A binary depiction of protein 3D structures (United States)

    Emerson, Isaac Arnold; Amala, Arumugam


    In recent years, there has been a considerable interest in examining the structure and dynamics of complex networks. Proteins in 3D space may also be considered as complex systems emerged through the interactions of their constituent amino acids. This representation provides a powerful framework to uncover the general organized principle of protein contact network. Here we reviewed protein contact map in terms of protein structure prediction and analyses. In addition, we had also discussed the various computational techniques for the prediction of protein contact maps and the tools to visualize contact maps.

  9. A 9-state hidden Markov model using protein secondary structure information for protein fold recognition. (United States)

    Lee, Sun Young; Lee, Jong Yun; Jung, Kwang Su; Ryu, Keun Ho


    In protein fold recognition, the main disadvantage of hidden Markov models (HMMs) is the employment of large-scale model architectures which require large data sets and high computational resources for training. Also, HMMs must consider sequential information about secondary structures of proteins, to improve prediction performance and reduce model parameters. Therefore, we propose a novel method for protein fold recognition based on a hidden Markov model, called a 9-state HMM. The method can (i) reduce the number of states using secondary structure information about proteins for each fold and (ii) recognize protein folds more accurately than other HMMs.

  10. Preeclampsia and Extracellular Vesicles. (United States)

    Gilani, Sarwat I; Weissgerber, Tracey L; Garovic, Vesna D; Jayachandran, Muthuvel


    Preeclampsia is a hypertensive pregnancy disorder characterized by development of hypertension and proteinuria after 20 weeks of gestation that remains a leading cause of maternal and neonatal morbidity and mortality. While preeclampsia is believed to result from complex interactions between maternal and placental factors, the proximate pathophysiology of this syndrome remains elusive. Cell-to-cell communication is a critical signaling mechanism for feto-placental development in normal pregnancies. One mechanism of cellular communication relates to activated cell-derived sealed membrane vesicles called extracellular vesicles (EVs). The concentrations and contents of EVs in biological fluids depend upon their cells of origin and the stimuli which trigger their production. Research on EVs in preeclampsia has focused on EVs derived from the maternal vasculature (endothelium, vascular smooth muscle) and blood (erythrocytes, leukocytes, and platelets), as well as placental syncytiotrophoblasts. Changes in the concentrations and contents of these EVs may contribute to the pathophysiology of preeclampsia by accentuating the pro-inflammatory and pro-coagulatory states of pregnancy. This review focuses on possible interactions among placental- and maternal-derived EVs and their contents in the initiation and progression of the pathogenesis of preeclampsia. Understanding the contributions of EVs in the pathogenesis of preeclampsia may facilitate their use as diagnostic and prognostic biomarkers.

  11. Fusion proteins as alternate crystallization paths to difficult structure problems (United States)

    Carter, Daniel C.; Rueker, Florian; Ho, Joseph X.; Lim, Kap; Keeling, Kim; Gilliland, Gary; Ji, Xinhua


    The three-dimensional structure of a peptide fusion product with glutathione transferase from Schistosoma japonicum (SjGST) has been solved by crystallographic methods to 2.5 A resolution. Peptides or proteins can be fused to SjGST and expressed in a plasmid for rapid synthesis in Escherichia coli. Fusion proteins created by this commercial method can be purified rapidly by chromatography on immobilized glutathione. The potential utility of using SjGST fusion proteins as alternate paths to the crystallization and structure determination of proteins is demonstrated.

  12. Structural properties of proteins specific to the myelin sheath. (United States)

    Kursula, P


    The myelin sheath is an insulating membrane layer surrounding myelinated axons in vertebrates, which is formed when the plasma membrane of an oligodendrocyte or a Schwann cell wraps itself around the axon. A large fraction of the total protein in this membrane layer is comprised of only a small number of individual proteins, which have certain intriguing structural properties. The myelin proteins are implicated in a number of neurological diseases, including, for example, autoimmune diseases and peripheral neuropathies. In this review, the structural properties of a number of myelin-specific proteins are described.

  13. Exploring Protein Dynamics Space: The Dynasome as the Missing Link between Protein Structure and Function (United States)

    Hensen, Ulf; Meyer, Tim; Haas, Jürgen; Rex, René; Vriend, Gert; Grubmüller, Helmut


    Proteins are usually described and classified according to amino acid sequence, structure or function. Here, we develop a minimally biased scheme to compare and classify proteins according to their internal mobility patterns. This approach is based on the notion that proteins not only fold into recurring structural motifs but might also be carrying out only a limited set of recurring mobility motifs. The complete set of these patterns, which we tentatively call the dynasome, spans a multi-dimensional space with axes, the dynasome descriptors, characterizing different aspects of protein dynamics. The unique dynamic fingerprint of each protein is represented as a vector in the dynasome space. The difference between any two vectors, consequently, gives a reliable measure of the difference between the corresponding protein dynamics. We characterize the properties of the dynasome by comparing the dynamics fingerprints obtained from molecular dynamics simulations of 112 proteins but our approach is, in principle, not restricted to any specific source of data of protein dynamics. We conclude that: 1. the dynasome consists of a continuum of proteins, rather than well separated classes. 2. For the majority of proteins we observe strong correlations between structure and dynamics. 3. Proteins with similar function carry out similar dynamics, which suggests a new method to improve protein function annotation based on protein dynamics. PMID:22606222

  14. Astrocyte VAMP3 vesicles undergo Ca2+-independent cycling and modulate glutamate transporter trafficking (United States)

    Li, Dongdong; Hérault, Karine; Zylbersztejn, Kathleen; Lauterbach, Marcel A; Guillon, Marc; Oheim, Martin; Ropert, Nicole


    Key points Mouse cortical astrocytes express VAMP3 but not VAMP2. VAMP3 vesicles undergo Ca2+-independent exo- and endocytotic cycling at the plasma membrane. VAMP3 vesicle traffic regulates the recycling of plasma membrane glutamate transporters. cAMP modulates VAMP3 vesicle cycling and glutamate uptake. Abstract Previous studies suggest that small synaptic-like vesicles in astrocytes carry vesicle-associated vSNARE proteins, VAMP3 (cellubrevin) and VAMP2 (synaptobrevin 2), both contributing to the Ca2+-regulated exocytosis of gliotransmitters, thereby modulating brain information processing. Here, using cortical astrocytes taken from VAMP2 and VAMP3 knock-out mice, we find that astrocytes express only VAMP3. The morphology and function of VAMP3 vesicles were studied in cultured astrocytes at single vesicle level with stimulated emission depletion (STED) and total internal reflection fluorescence (TIRF) microscopies. We show that VAMP3 antibodies label small diameter (∼80 nm) vesicles and that VAMP3 vesicles undergo Ca2+-independent exo-endocytosis. We also show that this pathway modulates the surface expression of plasma membrane glutamate transporters and the glutamate uptake by astrocytes. Finally, using pharmacological and optogenetic tools, we provide evidence suggesting that the cytosolic cAMP level influences astrocytic VAMP3 vesicle trafficking and glutamate transport. Our results suggest a new role for VAMP3 vesicles in astrocytes. PMID:25864578

  15. Plasma biomarker discovery in preeclampsia using a novel differential isolation technology for circulating extracellular vesicles. (United States)

    Tan, Kok Hian; Tan, Soon Sim; Sze, Siu Kwan; Lee, Wai Kheong Ryan; Ng, Mor Jack; Lim, Sai Kiang


    To circumvent the complex protein milieu of plasma and discover robust predictive biomarkers for preeclampsia (PE), we investigate if phospholipid-binding ligands can reduce the milieu complexity by extracting plasma extracellular vesicles for biomarker discovery. Cholera toxin B chain (CTB) and annexin V (AV) which respectively binds GM1 ganglioside and phosphatidylserine were used to isolate extracellular vesicles from plasma of PE patients and healthy pregnant women. The proteins in the vesicles were identified using enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay, antibody array, and mass spectrometry. CTB and AV were found to bind 2 distinct groups of extracellular vesicles. Antibody array and enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay revealed that PE patients had elevated levels of CD105, interleukin-6, placental growth factor, tissue inhibitor of metallopeptidase 1, and atrial natriuretic peptide in cholera toxin B- but not AV-vesicles, and elevated levels of plasminogen activator inhibitor-1, pro-calcitonin, S100b, tumor growth factor β, vascular endothelial growth factor receptor 1, brain natriuretic peptide, and placental growth factor in both cholera toxin B- and AV-vesicles. CD9 level was elevated in cholera toxin B-vesicles but reduced in AV vesicles of PE patients. Proteome analysis revealed that in cholera toxin B-vesicles, 87 and 222 proteins were present only in PE patients and healthy pregnant women respectively while in AV-vesicles, 104 and 157 proteins were present only in PE and healthy pregnant women, respectively. This study demonstrated for the first time that CTB and AV bind unique extracellular vesicles, and their protein cargo reflects the disease state of the patient. The successful use of these 2 ligands to isolate circulating plasma extracellular vesicles for biomarker discovery in PE represents a novel technology for biomarker discovery that can be applied to other specialties. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  16. Concurrent imaging of synaptic vesicle recycling and calcium dynamics.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Haiyan eLi


    Full Text Available Synaptic transmission involves the calcium-dependent release of neurotransmitter from synaptic vesicles. Genetically encoded optical probes emitting different wavelengths of fluorescent light in response to neuronal activity offer a powerful approach to understand the spatial and temporal relationship of calcium dynamics to the release of neurotransmitter in defined neuronal populations. To simultaneously image synaptic vesicle recycling and changes in cytosolic calcium, we developed a red-shifted reporter of vesicle recycling based on a vesicular glutamate transporter, VGLUT1-mOrange2 (VGLUT1-mOr2, and a presynaptically-localized green calcium indicator, synaptophysin-GCaMP3 (SyGCaMP3 with a large dynamic range. The fluorescence of VGLUT1-mOr2 is quenched by the low pH of synaptic vesicles. Exocytosis upon electrical stimulation exposes the luminal mOr2 to the neutral extracellular pH and relieves fluorescence quenching. Re-acidification of the vesicle upon endocytosis again reduces fluorescence intensity. Changes in fluorescence intensity thus monitor synaptic vesicle exo- and endocytosis, as demonstrated previously for the green VGLUT1-pHluorin. To monitor changes in calcium, we fused the synaptic vesicle protein synaptophysin to the recently improved calcium indicator GCaMP3. SyGCaMP3 is targeted to presynaptic varicosities, and exhibits changes in fluorescence in response to electrical stimulation consistent with changes in calcium concentration. Using real-time imaging of both reporters expressed in the same synapses, we determine the time course of changes in VGLUT1 recycling in relation to changes in presynaptic calcium concentration. Inhibition of P/Q- and N-type calcium channels reduces calcium levels, as well as the rate of synaptic vesicle exocytosis and the fraction of vesicles released.

  17. Expression screening, protein purification and NMR analysis of human protein domains for structural genomics

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Folkers, G.E.|info:eu-repo/dai/nl/162277202; van Buuren, B.N.M.; Kaptein, R.|info:eu-repo/dai/nl/074334603


    Structural genomics, the determination of protein structures on a genome-wide scale, is still in its infancy for eukaryotes due to the number and size of their genes. Low protein expression and solubility of eukaryotic geneproducts are the major bottlenecks in high-throughput (HTP) recombinant

  18. Analysis of the interface variability in NMR structure ensembles of protein-protein complexes

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Calvanese, Luisa; D'Auria, Gabriella; Vangone, Anna; Falcigno, Lucia; Oliva, Romina

    NMR structures consist in ensembles of conformers, all satisfying the experimental restraints, which exhibit a certain degree of structural variability. We analyzed here the interface in NMR ensembles of protein-protein heterodimeric complexes and found it to span a wide range of different

  19. Reconstitution of lipid vesicles associated with HVJ (Sendai virus) sikes. Purification and some properties of vesicles containing nontoxic fragment A of diphtheria toxin (United States)


    A mixture of HVJ (Sendai virus) spike proteins, the nontoxic fragment A of diphtheria toxin, lecithin, and cholesterol was solubilized in sucrose solution containing a nonionic neutral detergent. The liposomal vesicles which formed on removal of the detergent by dialysis were purified by gel filtration and centrifugation on a sucrose gradient. The resulting purified vesicles had hemagglutinating activity, hemolytic activity and, after solubilization, the enzymic activity of fragment A. The vesicles had no cell fusion activity. Electron microscopy showed that both the outside and inside of membranes of the vesicles were associated with the spikes. When the vesicles were freeze- fractured, no large aggregates of particles were seen on either face. Such fragment A-containing lipid vesicles (liposomes) with HVJ spikes bound to mamalian cell membrane and released their fragment A into the cytoplasm causing cell death. Neither fragment A-containing liposomes without spikes nor empty liposomes with spikes were toxic. PMID:217880

  20. Routes and mechanisms of extracellular vesicle uptake

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Laura Ann Mulcahy


    Full Text Available Extracellular vesicles (EVs are small vesicles released by donor cells that can be taken up by recipient cells. Despite their discovery decades ago, it has only recently become apparent that EVs play an important role in cell-to-cell communication. EVs can carry a range of nucleic acids and proteins which can have a significant impact on the phenotype of the recipient. For this phenotypic effect to occur, EVs need to fuse with target cell membranes, either directly with the plasma membrane or with the endosomal membrane after endocytic uptake. EVs are of therapeutic interest because they are deregulated in diseases such as cancer and they could be harnessed to deliver drugs to target cells. It is therefore important to understand the molecular mechanisms by which EVs are taken up into cells. This comprehensive review summarizes current knowledge of EV uptake mechanisms. Cells appear to take up EVs by a variety of endocytic pathways, including clathrin-dependent endocytosis, and clathrin-independent pathways such as caveolin-mediated uptake, macropinocytosis, phagocytosis, and lipid raft–mediated internalization. Indeed, it seems likely that a heterogeneous population of EVs may gain entry into a cell via more than one route. The uptake mechanism used by a given EV may depend on proteins and glycoproteins found on the surface of both the vesicle and the target cell. Further research is needed to understand the precise rules that underpin EV entry into cells.

  1. α-Synuclein binds large unilamellar vesicles as an extended helix† (United States)

    Trexler, Adam J.; Rhoades, Elizabeth


    Interactions between the synaptic protein α-Synuclein and cellular membranes may be relevant both to its native function as well as its role in Parkinson’s disease. We use single molecule Förster resonance energy transfer to probe the structure of α-Synuclein bound to detergent micelles and lipid vesicles. We find evidence that it forms a bent-helix when bound to highly curved detergent micelles, whereas it binds more physiological 100 nm diameter lipid vesicles as an elongated helix. Our results highlight the influence of membrane curvature in determining α-Synuclein conformation, which may be important for both its normal and disease-associated functions. PMID:19220042

  2. SMN requirement for synaptic vesicle, active zone and microtubule postnatal organization in motor nerve terminals.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Laura Torres-Benito

    Full Text Available Low levels of the Survival Motor Neuron (SMN protein produce Spinal Muscular Atrophy (SMA, a severe monogenetic disease in infants characterized by muscle weakness and impaired synaptic transmission. We report here severe structural and functional alterations in the organization of the organelles and the cytoskeleton of motor nerve terminals in a mouse model of SMA. The decrease in SMN levels resulted in the clustering of synaptic vesicles (SVs and Active Zones (AZs, reduction in the size of the readily releasable pool (RRP, and the recycling pool (RP of synaptic vesicles, a decrease in active mitochondria and limiting of neurofilament and microtubule maturation. We propose that SMN is essential for the normal postnatal maturation of motor nerve terminals and that SMN deficiency disrupts the presynaptic organization leading to neurodegeneration.

  3. Sortilin mediates vascular calcification via its recruitment into extracellular vesicles

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Goettsch, Claudia; Hutscheson, JD; Aikawa, M


    Vascular calcification is a common feature of major cardiovascular diseases. Extracellular vesicles participate in the formation of microcalcifications that are implicated in atherosclerotic plaque rupture; however, the mechanisms that regulate formation of calcifying extracellular vesicles remain...... obscure. Here, we have demonstrated that sortilin is a key regulator of smooth muscle cell (SMC) calcification via its recruitment to extracellular vesicles. Sortilin localized to calcifying vessels in human and mouse atheromata and participated in formation of microcalcifications in SMC culture. Sortilin...... regulated the loading of the calcification protein tissue nonspecific alkaline phosphatase (TNAP) into extracellular vesicles, thereby conferring its calcification potential. Furthermore, SMC calcification required Rab11-dependent trafficking and FAM20C/casein kinase 2-dependent C-terminal phosphorylation...

  4. Structural analysis of intermolecular interactions in the kinesin adaptor complex fasciculation and elongation protein zeta 1/ short coiled-coil protein (FEZ1/SCOCO.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marcos Rodrigo Alborghetti

    Full Text Available Cytoskeleton and protein trafficking processes, including vesicle transport to synapses, are key processes in neuronal differentiation and axon outgrowth. The human protein FEZ1 (fasciculation and elongation protein zeta 1 / UNC-76, in C. elegans, SCOCO (short coiled-coil protein / UNC-69 and kinesins (e.g. kinesin heavy chain / UNC116 are involved in these processes. Exploiting the feature of FEZ1 protein as a bivalent adapter of transport mediated by kinesins and FEZ1 protein interaction with SCOCO (proteins involved in the same path of axonal growth, we investigated the structural aspects of intermolecular interactions involved in this complex formation by NMR (Nuclear Magnetic Resonance, cross-linking coupled with mass spectrometry (MS, SAXS (Small Angle X-ray Scattering and molecular modelling. The topology of homodimerization was accessed through NMR (Nuclear Magnetic Resonance studies of the region involved in this process, corresponding to FEZ1 (92-194. Through studies involving the protein in its monomeric configuration (reduced and dimeric state, we propose that homodimerization occurs with FEZ1 chains oriented in an anti-parallel topology. We demonstrate that the interaction interface of FEZ1 and SCOCO defined by MS and computational modelling is in accordance with that previously demonstrated for UNC-76 and UNC-69. SAXS and literature data support a heterotetrameric complex model. These data provide details about the interaction interfaces probably involved in the transport machinery assembly and open perspectives to understand and interfere in this assembly and its involvement in neuronal differentiation and axon outgrowth.

  5. Relationship between Molecular Structure Characteristics of Feed Proteins and Protein In vitro Digestibility and Solubility


    Bai, Mingmei; Qin, Guixin; Sun, Zewei; Long, Guohui


    The nutritional value of feed proteins and their utilization by livestock are related not only to the chemical composition but also to the structure of feed proteins, but few studies thus far have investigated the relationship between the structure of feed proteins and their solubility as well as digestibility in monogastric animals. To address this question we analyzed soybean meal, fish meal, corn distiller’s dried grains with solubles, corn gluten meal, and feather meal by Fourier transfor...

  6. Sup35p in Its Soluble and Prion States Is Packaged inside Extracellular Vesicles. (United States)

    Kabani, Mehdi; Melki, Ronald


    The yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae harbors several prions that constitute powerful models to investigate the mechanisms of epigenetic structural inheritance. [PSI(+)] is undoubtedly the best-known yeast prion and results from the conversion of the translation termination factor Sup35p into self-perpetuating protein aggregates. Structurally different conformers of Sup35p aggregates can lead to [PSI(+)] strains with weak or strong prion phenotypes. Yeast prions are faithfully transmitted from mother to daughter cells during cell division, upon cytoplasmic mixing during mating, or when Sup35p fibrils made in test tubes are introduced into spheroplasts. Virtually all living cells in the three domains of life, Bacteria, Archaea, and Eukarya, secrete small membrane vesicles in the extracellular space. These extracellular vesicles (EV) have gained increasing interest as vehicles for the intercellular transfer of signaling molecules, nucleic acids, and pathogenic factors, as well as prion-like protein aggregates associated with neurodegenerative diseases. To begin to explore the question of whether EV could represent a natural mean for yeast prion transmission from cell to cell, we purified these extracellular vesicles and assessed whether they contained Sup35p. Here, we show that Sup35p is secreted within EV released in the extracellular medium of yeast cultures. We demonstrate that Sup35p within EV isolated from strong and weak [PSI(+)] cells is in an infectious prion conformation. Among the possible implications of our work is the possibility of previously unsuspected EV-mediated horizontal cell-to-cell transfer of fungal prions. Most living cells in the three domains of life, Bacteria, Archaea, and Eukarya, secrete small membrane vesicles in the extracellular space. These extracellular vesicles (EV) were long viewed as "trash cans" by which cells disposed of unwanted macromolecules. EV gained renewed interest as their roles as vehicles for the cell-to-cell transfer of

  7. Simultaneous prediction of protein secondary structure and transmembrane spans. (United States)

    Leman, Julia Koehler; Mueller, Ralf; Karakas, Mert; Woetzel, Nils; Meiler, Jens


    Prediction of transmembrane spans and secondary structure from the protein sequence is generally the first step in the structural characterization of (membrane) proteins. Preference of a stretch of amino acids in a protein to form secondary structure and being placed in the membrane are correlated. Nevertheless, current methods predict either secondary structure or individual transmembrane states. We introduce a method that simultaneously predicts the secondary structure and transmembrane spans from the protein sequence. This approach not only eliminates the necessity to create a consensus prediction from possibly contradicting outputs of several predictors but bears the potential to predict conformational switches, i.e., sequence regions that have a high probability to change for example from a coil conformation in solution to an α-helical transmembrane state. An artificial neural network was trained on databases of 177 membrane proteins and 6048 soluble proteins. The output is a 3 × 3 dimensional probability matrix for each residue in the sequence that combines three secondary structure types (helix, strand, coil) and three environment types (membrane core, interface, solution). The prediction accuracies are 70.3% for nine possible states, 73.2% for three-state secondary structure prediction, and 94.8% for three-state transmembrane span prediction. These accuracies are comparable to state-of-the-art predictors of secondary structure (e.g., Psipred) or transmembrane placement (e.g., OCTOPUS). The method is available as web server and for download at Copyright © 2013 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  8. [Structural biology of post-translational modifications of proteins]. (United States)

    Kato, Koichi


    A majority of proteins encoded in genomes of limited size are post-translationally diversified by covalent modifications such as glycosylation and ubiquitination. Although recent advances in structural proteomics have enabled high-throughput structure determination of proteins, structural analyses of post-translationally modified proteins remain challenging because of the lack of appropriate determination methods. Therefore, we developed methodologies for characterizing the post-translational modifications of proteins from the structural viewpoint, focusing especially on glycosylation and ubiquitination. For instance, we established a systematic method for structural glycomics to address broader issues, including glycosylation profiling and 3D structure analyses of glycoproteins. Our stable-isotope-assisted NMR techniques in conjunction with X-ray crystallographic approach provide valuable information at the atomic level on conformations, dynamics, and interactions of glycoproteins such as antibody and proteins involved in the ubiquitin-proteasome system. These studies provide the structural basis for improved efficacy of therapeutic antibodies on defucosylation of their Fc glycans and mechanistic insights into ubiquitination reactions in glycoprotein-fate determination in cells. These approaches will allow new possibilities for structural studies on post-translationally modified proteins of clinical, pathological, and pharmaceutical interests.

  9. Large cryptic internal sequence repeats in protein structures from ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)


    [Sarani R, Udayaprakash N A, Subashini R, Mridula P, Yamane T and Sekar K 2009 Large cryptic internal sequence repeats in protein structures from Homo sapiens; J. Biosci. 34 103–112]. Keywords. Propensity; structure–function correlation; human genome; structural plasticity; three-dimensional structure; identical and.

  10. Protein dynamics derived from clusters of crystal structures

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van Aalten, D.M.F.; Conn, D.A.; de Groot, B.L.; Berendsen, H.J.C.; Findlay, J.B.C.; Amadei, A


    A method is presented to mathematically extract concerted structural transitions in proteins from collections of crystal structures. The ''essential dynamics'' procedure is used to filter out small-amplitude fluctuations from such a set of structures; the remaining large conformational changes

  11. Docking of secretory vesicles is syntaxin dependent.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Heidi de Wit

    Full Text Available Secretory vesicles dock at the plasma membrane before they undergo fusion. Molecular docking mechanisms are poorly defined but believed to be independent of SNARE proteins. Here, we challenged this hypothesis by acute deletion of the target SNARE, syntaxin, in vertebrate neurons and neuroendocrine cells. Deletion resulted in fusion arrest in both systems. No docking defects were observed in synapses, in line with previous observations. However, a drastic reduction in morphologically docked secretory vesicles was observed in chromaffin cells. Syntaxin-deficient chromaffin cells showed a small reduction in total and plasma membrane staining for the docking factor Munc18-1, which appears insufficient to explain the drastic reduction in docking. The sub-membrane cortical actin network was unaffected by syntaxin deletion. These observations expose a docking role for syntaxin in the neuroendocrine system. Additional layers of regulation may have evolved to make syntaxin redundant for docking in highly specialized systems like synaptic active zones.

  12. Protein sequence and structure relationship ARMA spectral analysis: application to membrane proteins. (United States)

    Sun, S; Parthasarathy, R


    If it is assumed that the primary sequence determines the three-dimensional folded structure of a protein, then the regular folding patterns, such as alpha-helix, beta-sheet, and other ordered patterns in the three-dimensional structure must correspond to the periodic distribution of the physical properties of the amino acids along the primary sequence. An AutoRegressive Moving Average (ARMA) model method of spectral analysis is applied to analyze protein sequences represented by the hydrophobicity of their amino acids. The results for several membrane proteins of known structures indicate that the periodic distribution of hydrophobicity of the primary sequence is closely related to the regular folding patterns in a protein's three-dimensional structure. We also applied the method to the transmembrane regions of acetylcholine receptor alpha subunit and Shaker potassium channel for which no atomic resolution structure is available. This work is an extension of our analysis of globular proteins by a similar method.

  13. Coverage of protein sequence space by current structural genomics targets. (United States)

    O'Toole, Nicholas; Raymond, Stéphane; Cygler, Miroslaw


    By its purest definition the ultimate goal of structural genomics (SG) is the determination of the structures of all proteins encoded by genomes. Most of these will be obtained by homology modeling using the structures of a set of target proteins for experimental determination. Thanks to the open exchange of SG target information, we are able to analyze the sequences of the current target list to evaluate the extent of its coverage of protein sequence space. The presence of homologous sequences currently either in the Protein Data Bank (PDB) or among SG targets has been determined for each of the protein sequences in several organisms. In this way we are able to evaluate the coverage by existing or targeted structural data for the non-membranous parts of entire proteomes. For small bacterial proteomes such as that of H. influenzae almost all proteins have homologous sequences among SG targets or in the PDB. There is significantly lower coverage for more complex organisms, such as C. elegans. We have mapped the SG target list onto the ProtoMap clustering of protein sequences. Clusters occupied by SG targets represent over 150,000 protein sequences, which is approximately 44% of the total protein sequences classified by ProtoMap. The mapping of SG targets also enables an evaluation of the degree of overlap within the target list. An SG target typically occupies a ProtoMap cluster with more than six other homologous targets.

  14. Structure and functions of keratin proteins in simple, stratified, keratinized and cornified epithelia. (United States)

    Bragulla, Hermann H; Homberger, Dominique G


    Historically, the term 'keratin' stood for all of the proteins extracted from skin modifications, such as horns, claws and hooves. Subsequently, it was realized that this keratin is actually a mixture of keratins, keratin filament-associated proteins and other proteins, such as enzymes. Keratins were then defined as certain filament-forming proteins with specific physicochemical properties and extracted from the cornified layer of the epidermis, whereas those filament-forming proteins that were extracted from the living layers of the epidermis were grouped as 'prekeratins' or 'cytokeratins'. Currently, the term 'keratin' covers all intermediate filament-forming proteins with specific physicochemical properties and produced in any vertebrate epithelia. Similarly, the nomenclature of epithelia as cornified, keratinized or non-keratinized is based historically on the notion that only the epidermis of skin modifications such as horns, claws and hooves is cornified, that the non-modified epidermis is a keratinized stratified epithelium, and that all other stratified and non-stratified epithelia are non-keratinized epithelia. At this point in time, the concepts of keratins and of keratinized or cornified epithelia need clarification and revision concerning the structure and function of keratin and keratin filaments in various epithelia of different species, as well as of keratin genes and their modifications, in view of recent research, such as the sequencing of keratin proteins and their genes, cell culture, transfection of epithelial cells, immunohistochemistry and immunoblotting. Recently, new functions of keratins and keratin filaments in cell signaling and intracellular vesicle transport have been discovered. It is currently understood that all stratified epithelia are keratinized and that some of these keratinized stratified epithelia cornify by forming a Stratum corneum. The processes of keratinization and cornification in skin modifications are different

  15. Rapid synaptic vesicle endocytosis in cone photoreceptors of salamander retina (United States)

    Van Hook, Matthew J.; Thoreson, Wallace B.


    Following synaptic vesicle exocytosis, neurons retrieve the fused membrane by a process of endocytosis in order to provide a supply of vesicles for subsequent release and maintain the presynaptic active zone. Rod and cone photoreceptors use a specialized structure called the synaptic ribbon that enables them to sustain high rates of neurotransmitter release. They must also employ mechanisms of synaptic vesicle endocytosis capable of keeping up with release. While much is known about endocytosis at another retinal ribbon synapse, that of the goldfish Mb1 bipolar cell, less is known about endocytosis in photoreceptors. We used capacitance recording techniques to measure vesicle membrane fusion and retrieval in photoreceptors from salamander retinal slices. We found that application of brief depolarizing steps (endocytosis with a time constant ~250 ms. In some cases, the capacitance trace overshot the baseline, indicating excess endocytosis. Calcium had no effect on the time constant, but enhanced excess endocytosis resulting in a faster rate of membrane retrieval. Surprisingly, endocytosis was unaffected by blockers of dynamin, suggesting that cone endocytosis is dynamin-independent. This contrasts with synaptic vesicle endocytosis in rods, which was inhibited by the dynamin inhibitor dynasore and GTPγS introduced through the patch pipette, suggesting that the two photoreceptor types employ distinct pathways for vesicle retrieval. The fast kinetics of synaptic vesicle endocytosis in photoreceptors likely enables these cells to maintain a high rate of transmitter release, allowing them to faithfully signal changes in illumination to second-order neurons. PMID:23238726

  16. Structural and Functional Annotation of Hypothetical Proteins of O139

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Md. Saiful Islam


    Full Text Available In developing countries threat of cholera is a significant health concern whenever water purification and sewage disposal systems are inadequate. Vibrio cholerae is one of the responsible bacteria involved in cholera disease. The complete genome sequence of V. cholerae deciphers the presence of various genes and hypothetical proteins whose function are not yet understood. Hence analyzing and annotating the structure and function of hypothetical proteins is important for understanding the V. cholerae. V. cholerae O139 is the most common and pathogenic bacterial strain among various V. cholerae strains. In this study sequence of six hypothetical proteins of V. cholerae O139 has been annotated from NCBI. Various computational tools and databases have been used to determine domain family, protein-protein interaction, solubility of protein, ligand binding sites etc. The three dimensional structure of two proteins were modeled and their ligand binding sites were identified. We have found domains and families of only one protein. The analysis revealed that these proteins might have antibiotic resistance activity, DNA breaking-rejoining activity, integrase enzyme activity, restriction endonuclease, etc. Structural prediction of these proteins and detection of binding sites from this study would indicate a potential target aiding docking studies for therapeutic designing against cholera.

  17. Structural changes in gluten protein structure after addition of emulsifier. A Raman spectroscopy study (United States)

    Ferrer, Evelina G.; Gómez, Analía V.; Añón, María C.; Puppo, María C.


    Food protein product, gluten protein, was chemically modified by varying levels of sodium stearoyl lactylate (SSL); and the extent of modifications (secondary and tertiary structures) of this protein was analyzed by using Raman spectroscopy. Analysis of the Amide I band showed an increase in its intensity mainly after the addition of the 0.25% of SSL to wheat flour to produced modified gluten protein, pointing the formation of a more ordered structure. Side chain vibrations also confirmed the observed changes.

  18. Protein Structure Classification and Loop Modeling Using Multiple Ramachandran Distributions

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    Seyed Morteza Najibi


    Full Text Available Recently, the study of protein structures using angular representations has attracted much attention among structural biologists. The main challenge is how to efficiently model the continuous conformational space of the protein structures based on the differences and similarities between different Ramachandran plots. Despite the presence of statistic