bims-proteo Biomed News
on Proteostasis
Issue of 2021‒01‒31
sixty-two papers selected by
Eric Chevet

  1. J Biol Chem. 2021 Jan 22. pii: S0021-9258(21)00095-8. [Epub ahead of print] 100324
      The heat shock response (HSR) is a transcriptional program of organisms to counteract an imbalance in protein homeostasis. It is orchestrated in all eukaryotic cells by heat shock factor 1 (Hsf1). Despite very intensive research, the intricacies of the Hsf1 activation-attenuation cycle remain elusive at a molecular level. Posttranslational modifications belong to one of the key mechanisms proposed to adapt the Hsf1 activity to the needs of individual cells and phosphorylation of Hsf1 at multiple sites has attracted much attention. According to cell biological and proteomics data, Hsf1 is also modified by SUMO (small ubiquitin-like modifier) at several sites. How SUMOylation affects Hsf1 activity at a molecular level is still unclear. Here, we analyzed Hsf1 SUMOylation in vitro with purified components to address questions that could not be answered in cell culture models. In vitro Hsf1 is primarily conjugated at lysine 298 with a single SUMO, though we did detect low level SUMOylation at other sites. Different SUMO E3 ligases such as PIAS4 enhanced the efficiency of in vitro modification, but did not alter SUMO site preferences. We provide evidence that Hsf1 trimerization and phosphorylation at serines 303 and 307 increases SUMOylation efficiency, suggesting that Hsf1 is SUMOylated in its activated state. Hsf1 can be SUMOylated when DNA-bound, and SUMOylation of Hsf1 does neither alter DNA binding affinity nor does it affect Hsc70 and DnaJB1-mediated monomerization of Hsf1 trimers and concomitant dislocation from DNA. We propose that SUMOylation acts at the transcription level of the HSR.
    Keywords:  Heat shock factor protein 1 (HSF1); Protein misfolding; post‐translational modification (PTM); small ubiquitin‐like modifier (SUMO); stress response; transcription regulation
  2. Mol Metab. 2021 Jan 20. pii: S2212-8778(21)00009-0. [Epub ahead of print] 101169
      BACKGROUND: The global rise of metabolic disorders, such as obesity, diabetes type 2 and cardiovascular disease, demands a thorough molecular understanding of the cellular mechanisms that govern health or disease. The endoplasmic reticulum (ER) is a key organelle for cellular function and metabolic adaptation and, therefore, disturbed ER function, "ER stress", is a key feature of metabolic disorders.SCOPE OF REVIEW: As ER stress remains an ill-defined phenomenon, this review provides a general guide to understanding the nature, aetiology and consequences of ER stress in metabolic disorders. We define ER stress by its type of stressor, which is driven by proteotoxicity, lipotoxicity, and/or glucotoxicity. We discuss the implications of ER stress in metabolic disorders by reviewing evidence implicating ER phenotypes and organelle communication, protein quality control, calcium homeostasis, lipid and carbohydrate metabolism, and inflammation as key mechanisms in the development of ER stress and metabolic dysfunction.
    MAJOR CONCLUSIONS: In mammalian biology, ER is a phenotypically and functionally diverse platform for nutrient sensing, which is critical for cell-type specific metabolic control by e.g. hepatocytes, adipocytes, muscle cells, and neurons. In these cells, ER stress is a distinct, transient state of functional imbalance, which is usually resolved by the activation of adaptive programs such as the unfolded protein response (UPR), ER-associated protein degradation (ERAD), or autophagy. However, challenges to proteostasis also impact lipid and glucose metabolism and vice versa. In the ER, both sensing and adaptive measures are integrated and failure of the ER to adapt leads to aberrant metabolism, organelle dysfunction, insulin resistance, and inflammation. In conclusion, the ER is intricately linked to a wide spectrum of cellular functions and is a critical component in maintaining and restoring metabolic health.
    Keywords:  ERAD; NFE2L1; Obesity; UPR; UPS; autophagy; calcium homeostasis; diabetes; endoplasmic reticulum; glucotoxicity; inflammation; lipid metabolism; lipotoxicity; proteostasis; proteotoxicity
  3. Trends Biochem Sci. 2021 Jan 25. pii: S0968-0004(20)30325-X. [Epub ahead of print]
      Lysosomal degradation of endoplasmic reticulum (ER) fragments by autophagy, termed ER-phagy or reticulophagy, occurs under normal as well as stress conditions. The recent discovery of multiple ER-phagy receptors has stimulated studies on the roles of ER-phagy. We discuss how the ER-phagy receptors and the cellular components that work with these receptors mediate two important functions: ER homeostasis and ER quality control. We highlight that ER-phagy plays an important role in alleviating ER expansion induced by ER stress, and acts as an alternative disposal pathway for misfolded proteins. We suggest that the latter function explains the emerging connection between ER-phagy and disease. Additional ER-phagy-associated functions and important unanswered questions are also discussed.
    Keywords:  autophagy receptor; endoplasmic reticulum; human disease; macro-ER-phagy; micro-ER-phagy; proteostasis; reticulophagy
  4. J Biol Chem. 2021 Jan 23. pii: S0021-9258(21)00106-X. [Epub ahead of print] 100335
      Lipid transfer proteins of the Ups1/PRELID1 family facilitate the transport of phospholipids across the intermembrane space of mitochondria in a lipid-specific manner. Heterodimeric complexes of yeast Ups1/Mdm35 or human PRELID1/TRIAP1 shuttle phosphatidic acid (PA) mainly synthesized in the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) to the inner membrane, where it is converted to cardiolipin (CL), the signature phospholipid of mitochondria. Loss of Ups1/PRELID1 proteins impairs the accumulation of CL and broadly affects mitochondrial structure and function. Unexpectedly and unlike yeast cells lacking the cardiolipin synthase Crd1, Ups1 deficient yeast cells exhibit glycolytic growth defects, pointing to functions of Ups1-mediated PA transfer beyond CL synthesis. Here, we show that the disturbed intramitochondrial transport of PA in ups1Δ cells leads to altered unfolded protein response (UPR) and mTORC1 signaling, independent of disturbances in CL synthesis. The impaired flux of PA into mitochondria is associated with the increased synthesis of phosphatidylcholine (PC) and a reduced phosphatidylethanolamine (PE)/PC ratio in the ER of ups1Δ cells which suppresses the UPR. Moreover, we observed inhibition of TORC1 signaling in these cells. Activation of either UPR by ER protein stress or of TORC1 signaling by disruption of its negative regulator, the SEACIT complex, increased cytosolic protein synthesis and restored glycolytic growth of ups1Δ cells. These results demonstrate that PA influx into mitochondria is required to preserve ER membrane homeostasis and that its disturbance is associated with impaired glycolytic growth and cellular stress signaling.
    Keywords:  Mitochondria; PRELID1; TORC1; Ups1; endoplasmic reticulum (ER); lipid transfer; phospholipid; unfolded protein response (UPR); yeast
  5. Elife. 2021 Jan 27. pii: e57720. [Epub ahead of print]10
      Protein modification by SUMO helps orchestrate the elaborate events of meiosis to faithfully produce haploid gametes. To date, only a handful of meiotic SUMO targets have been identified. Here we delineate a multidimensional SUMO-modified meiotic proteome in budding yeast, identifying 2747 conjugation sites in 775 targets, and defining their relative levels and dynamics. Modified sites cluster in disordered regions and only a minority match consensus motifs. Target identities and modification dynamics imply that SUMOylation regulates all levels of chromosome organization and each step of meiotic prophase I. Execution-point analysis confirms these inferences, revealing functions for SUMO in S-phase, the initiation of recombination, chromosome synapsis and crossing over. K15-linked SUMO chains become prominent as chromosomes synapse and recombine, consistent with roles in these processes. SUMO also modifies ubiquitin, forming hybrid oligomers with potential to modulate ubiquitin signaling. We conclude that SUMO plays diverse and unanticipated roles in regulating meiotic chromosome metabolism.
    Keywords:  S. cerevisiae; cell biology; developmental biology
  6. J Cell Biol. 2021 Mar 01. pii: e202004211. [Epub ahead of print]220(3):
      When a ribosome stalls during translation, it runs the risk of collision with a trailing ribosome. Such an encounter leads to the formation of a stable di-ribosome complex, which needs to be resolved by a dedicated machinery. The initial stalling and the subsequent resolution of di-ribosomal complexes requires activity of Makorin and ZNF598 ubiquitin E3 ligases, respectively, through ubiquitylation of the eS10 and uS10 subunits of the ribosome. We have developed a specific small-molecule inhibitor of the deubiquitylase USP9X. Proteomics analysis, following inhibitor treatment of HCT116 cells, confirms previous reports linking USP9X with centrosome-associated protein stability but also reveals a loss of Makorin 2 and ZNF598. We show that USP9X interacts with both these ubiquitin E3 ligases, regulating their abundance through the control of protein stability. In the absence of USP9X or following chemical inhibition of its catalytic activity, levels of Makorins and ZNF598 are diminished, and the ribosomal quality control pathway is impaired.
  7. Autophagy. 2021 Jan 28. 1-15
      Macroautophagy/autophagy plays an important role in the control of viral infections and viruses have evolved multiple strategies to interfere with autophagy to avoid destruction and promote their own replication and spread. Here we report that the deubiquitinase encoded in the N-terminal domain of the Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) large tegument protein, BPLF1, regulates selective autophagy. Mass spectrometry analysis identified several vesicular traffic and autophagy related proteins as BPLF1 interactors and potential substrates, suggesting that the viral protein targets this cellular defense during productive infection. Direct binding of BPLF1 to the autophagy receptor SQSTM1/p62 (sequestosome 1) was confirmed by co-immunoprecipitation of transfected BPLF1 and by in vitro affinity isolation of bacterially expressed proteins. Expression of the catalytically active BPLF1 was associated with decreased SQSTM1/p62 ubiquitination and failure to recruit LC3 to SQSTM1/p62-positive aggregates. Selective autophagy was inhibited as illustrated by the accumulation of large protein aggregates in BPLF1-positive cells co-transfected with an aggregate-prone HTT (huntingtin)-Q109 construct, and by a slower autophagy-dependent clearance of protein aggregates upon transfection of BPLF1 in cells expressing a tetracycline-regulated HTT-Q103. The inhibition of aggregate clearance was restored by overexpression of a SQSTM1/p62[E409A,K420R] mutant that does not require ubiquitination of Lys420 for cargo loading. These findings highlight a previously unrecognized role of the viral deubiquitinase in the regulation of selective autophagy, which may promote infection and the production of infectious virus. Abbreviations: BPLF1, BamH1 fragment left open reading frame-1; EBV, Epstein-Barr virus; GFP, green fluorescent protein; HTT, huntingtin; MAP1LC3/LC3, microtubule associated protein 1 light chain 3; PB1, Phox and Bem1 domain; PE, phosphatidylethanolamine; SQSTM1/p62, sequestosome 1; UBA, ubiquitin-associated domain.
    Keywords:  Autophagy; EBV; SQSTM1/p62; deubiquitinase; large tegument protein
  8. J Biol Chem. 2020 Feb 07. pii: S0021-9258(17)49863-2. [Epub ahead of print]295(6): 1646-1657
      Legionella pneumophila is the causative agent of the lung malady Legionnaires' disease, it modulates host function to create a niche termed the Legionella-containing vacuole (LCV) that permits intracellular L. pneumophila replication. One important aspect of such modulation is the co-option of the host ubiquitin network with a panel of effector proteins. Here, using recombinantly expressed and purified proteins, analytic ultracentrifugation, structural analysis, and computational modeling, along with deubiquitinase (DUB), and bacterial infection assays, we found that the bacterial defective in organelle trafficking/intracellular multiplication effector Ceg23 is a member of the ovarian tumor (OTU) DUB family. We found that Ceg23 displays high specificity toward Lys-63-linked polyubiquitin chains and is localized on the LCV, where it removes ubiquitin moieties from proteins ubiquitinated by the Lys-63-chain type. Analysis of the crystal structure of a Ceg23 variant lacking two putative transmembrane domains at 2.80 Å resolution revealed that despite very limited homology to established members of the OTU family at the primary sequence level, Ceg23 harbors a catalytic motif resembling those associated with typical OTU-type DUBs. ceg23 deletion increased the association of Lys-63-linked polyubiquitin with the bacterial phagosome, indicating that Ceg23 regulates Lys-63-linked ubiquitin signaling on the LCV. In summary, our findings indicate that Ceg23 contributes to the regulation of the association of Lys-63 type polyubiquitin with the Legionella phagosome. Future identification of host substrates targeted by Ceg23 could clarify the roles of these polyubiquitin chains in the intracellular life cycle of L. pneumophila and Ceg23's role in bacterial virulence.
    Keywords:  Legionella pneumophila; bacteria; bacterial pathogenesis; deubiquitylation (deubiquitination); effector protein; ovarian-tumor family deubiquitinases; polyubiquitin chain; structural biology; type IV secretion system
  9. Autophagy. 2021 Jan 26. 1-26
      Macroautophagy/autophagy is an intracellular degradation process that delivers cytosolic materials and/or damaged organelles to lysosomes. De novo synthesis of the autophagosome membrane occurs within a phosphatidylinositol-3-phosphate-rich region of the endoplasmic reticulum, and subsequent expansion is critical for cargo encapsulation. This process is complex, especially in mammals, with many regulatory factors. In this study, by utilizing PRKN (parkin RBR E3 ubiquitin protein ligase)-mediated mitochondria autophagy (mitophagy)-inducing conditions in conjunction with chemical crosslinking and mass spectrometry, we identified human BCAS3 (BCAS3 microtubule associated cell migration factor) and C16orf70 (chromosome 16 open reading frame 70) as novel proteins that associate with the autophagosome formation site during both non-selective and selective autophagy. We demonstrate that BCAS3 and C16orf70 form a complex and that their association with the phagophore assembly site requires both proteins. In silico structural modeling, mutational analyses in cells and in vitro phosphoinositide-binding assays indicate that the WD40 repeat domain in human BCAS3 directly binds phosphatidylinositol-3-phosphate. Furthermore, overexpression of the BCAS3-C16orf70 complex affects the recruitment of several core autophagy proteins to the phagophore assembly site. This study demonstrates regulatory roles for human BCAS3 and C16orf70 in autophagic activity.
    Keywords:  Mitophagy; parkin; phagophore; pink1; starvation; wd40
  10. Autophagy. 2021 Jan 26. 1-3
      Lysosomes play an essential role in quality control mechanisms by functioning as the primary digestive system in mammalian cells. However, the quality control mechanisms governing healthy lysosomes are not fully understood. Using a method to study lysosome membrane turnover, we discovered that LC3-lipidation on the lysosome limiting membrane is involved in invagination and formation of intralumenal vesicles, an activity known as microautophagy. This activity occurs in response to metabolic stress, in the form of glucose starvation, or osmotic stress induced by treatment with lysosomotropic compounds. Cells rendered deficient in the ability to lipidate LC3 through knockout of ATG5 show reduced ability to regulate lysosome size and degradative function in response to stress. These findings demonstrate that cells can adapt to changing metabolic conditions by turning over selective portions of the lysosomal membrane, using a mechanism that involves lysosome-targeted LC3 lipidation and the induction of selective microautophagy.
    Keywords:  ATG5; LC3; autophagy; lysophagy; microautophagy
  11. Plants (Basel). 2021 Jan 27. pii: 246. [Epub ahead of print]10(2):
      Ubiquitin is a 76 amino acid polypeptide common to all eukaryotic organisms. It functions as a post-translationally modifying mark covalently linked to a large cohort of yet poorly defined protein substrates. The resulting ubiquitylated proteins can rapidly change their activities, cellular localization, or turnover through the 26S proteasome if they are no longer needed or are abnormal. Such a selective modification is essential to many signal transduction pathways particularly in those related to stress responses by rapidly enhancing or quenching output. Hence, this modification system, the so-called ubiquitin-26S proteasome system (UPS), has caught the attention in the plant research community over the last two decades for its roles in plant abiotic and biotic stress responses. Through direct or indirect mediation of plant hormones, the UPS selectively degrades key components in stress signaling to either negatively or positively regulate plant response to a given stimulus. As a result, a tightly regulated signaling network has become of much interest over the years. The ever-increasing changes of the global climate require both the development of new crops to cope with rapid changing environment and new knowledge to survey the dynamics of ecosystem. This review examines how the ubiquitin can switch and tune plant stress response and poses potential avenues to further explore this system.
    Keywords:  E3 ligase; ROS; drought; innate immunity; protein degradation; salinity; stress; thermotolerance; ubiquitin
  12. Immunology. 2021 Jan 29.
      Interferon regulatory factor 3 (IRF3) is a critical transcription factor for inducing production of type-I interferons (IFN-I) and regulating host antiviral response. Although IRF3 activation during viral infection has been extensively studied, the inhibitory regulation of IRF3 remains largely unexplored. Here, we revealed that Midline-1 (MID1) is a ubiquitin E3 ligase of IRF3 that plays essential roles in regulating the production of IFN-I. We found that MID1 physically interacts with IRF3 and downregulates IRF3 protein levels. Next, we demonstrated that MID1 can induce K48-linked polyubiquitination of IRF3, thus lowing the protein stability of IRF3. Our further studies identified Lys313 as a major ubiquitin acceptor lysine of IRF3 induced by MID1. Finally, MID1-mediated ubiquitination and degradation of IRF3 restricts IFN-I production and cellular antiviral response. This study uncovers a role of MID1 in regulating innate antiviral immunity, and may provide a potential target for enhancing host antiviral activity.
    Keywords:  IRF3; MID1; antiviral response; innate immunity; interferon; ubiquitination
  13. Int J Mol Sci. 2021 Jan 20. pii: E986. [Epub ahead of print]22(3):
      The large family of deubiquitinating enzymes (DUBs) are involved in the regulation of a plethora of processes carried out inside the cell by protein ubiquitination. Ubiquitination is a basic pathway responsible for the correct protein homeostasis in the cell, which could regulate the fate of proteins through the ubiquitin-proteasome system (UPS). In this review we will focus on recent advances on the molecular mechanisms and specificities found for some types of DUBs enzymes, highlighting illustrative examples in which the regulatory mechanism for DUBs has been understood in depth at the molecular level by structural biology. DUB proteases are responsible for cleavage and regulation of the multiple types of ubiquitin linkages that can be synthesized inside the cell, known as the ubiquitin-code, which are tightly connected to specific substrate functions. We will display some strategies carried out by members of different DUB families to provide specificity on the cleavage of particular ubiquitin linkages. Finally, we will also discuss recent progress made for the development of drug compounds targeting DUB proteases, which are usually correlated to the progress of many pathologies such as cancer and neurodegenerative diseases.
    Keywords:  DUBs; UPS; USPs; deubiquitinating enzymes; proteasome; protein degradation; structural analysis; ubiquitin; ubiquitin-code
  14. J Biol Chem. 2020 Apr 17. pii: S0021-9258(17)48545-0. [Epub ahead of print]295(16): 5216-5228
      The linear ubiquitin assembly complex (LUBAC) is an essential component of the innate and adaptive immune system. Modification of cellular substrates with linear polyubiquitin chains is a key regulatory step in signal transduction that impacts cell death and inflammatory signaling downstream of various innate immunity receptors. Loss-of-function mutations in the LUBAC components HOIP and HOIL-1 yield a systemic autoinflammatory disease in humans, whereas their genetic ablation is embryonically lethal in mice. Deficiency of the LUBAC adaptor protein Sharpin results in a multi-organ inflammatory disease in mice characterized by chronic proliferative dermatitis (cpdm), which is propagated by TNFR1-induced and RIPK1-mediated keratinocyte cell death. We have previously shown that caspase-1 and -11 promoted the dermatitis pathology of cpdm mice and mediated cell death in the skin. Here, we describe a reciprocal regulation of caspase-1 and LUBAC activities in keratinocytes. We show that LUBAC interacted with caspase-1 via HOIP and modified its CARD domain with linear polyubiquitin and that depletion of HOIP or Sharpin resulted in heightened caspase-1 activation and cell death in response to inflammasome activation, unlike what is observed in macrophages. Reciprocally, caspase-1, as well as caspase-8, regulated LUBAC activity by proteolytically processing HOIP at Asp-348 and Asp-387 during the execution of cell death. HOIP processing impeded substrate ubiquitination in the NF-κB pathway and resulted in enhanced apoptosis. These results highlight a regulatory mechanism underlying efficient apoptosis in keratinocytes and provide further evidence of a cross-talk between inflammatory and cell death pathways.
    Keywords:  E3 ubiquitin ligase; apoptosis; caspase 1 (Casp1); cell death; inflammasome; keratinocyte
  15. Nat Commun. 2021 01 25. 12(1): 568
      The endoplasmic reticulum (ER) network consists of tubules with high membrane curvature in cross-section, generated by the reticulons and REEPs. These proteins have two pairs of trans-membrane (TM) segments, followed by an amphipathic helix (APH), but how they induce curvature is poorly understood. Here, we show that REEPs form homodimers by interaction within the membrane. When overexpressed or reconstituted at high concentrations with phospholipids, REEPs cause extreme curvature through their TMs, generating lipoprotein particles instead of vesicles. The APH facilitates curvature generation, as its mutation prevents ER network formation of reconstituted proteoliposomes, and synthetic L- or D-amino acid peptides abolish ER network formation in Xenopus egg extracts. In Schizosaccharomyces japonicus, the APH is required for reticulon's exclusive ER-tubule localization and restricted mobility. Thus, the TMs and APH cooperate to generate high membrane curvature. We propose that the formation of splayed REEP/reticulon dimers is responsible for ER tubule formation.
  16. J Biol Chem. 2020 Feb 07. pii: S0021-9258(17)49845-0. [Epub ahead of print]295(6): 1426-1438
      Stress granules (SGs) are ribonucleoprotein (RNP) assemblies that form in eukaryotic cells as a result of limited translation in response to stress. SGs form during viral infection and are thought to promote the antiviral response because many viruses encode inhibitors of SG assembly. However, the antiviral endoribonuclease RNase L also alters SG formation, whereby only small punctate SG-like bodies that we term RNase L-dependent bodies (RLBs) form during RNase L activation. How RLBs relate to SGs and their mode of biogenesis is unknown. Herein, using immunofluorescence, live-cell imaging, and MS-based analyses, we demonstrate that RLBs represent a unique RNP granule with a protein and RNA composition distinct from that of SGs in response to dsRNA lipofection in human cells. We found that RLBs are also generated independently of SGs and the canonical dsRNA-induced SG biogenesis pathway, because RLBs did not require protein kinase R, phosphorylation of eukaryotic translation initiation factor 2 subunit 1 (eIF2α), the SG assembly G3BP paralogs, or release of mRNAs from ribosomes via translation elongation. Unlike the transient interactions between SGs and P-bodies, RLBs and P-bodies extensively and stably interacted. However, despite both RLBs and P-bodies exhibiting liquid-like properties, they remained distinct condensates. Taken together, these observations reveal that RNase L promotes the formation of a unique RNP complex that may have roles during the RNase L-mediated antiviral response.
    Keywords:  Protein kinase R (PKR); RNA degradation; RNA turnover; Ribonuclease L (RNase L); double-stranded RNA (dsRNA); innate immunity; lipid droplet; processing body (P-body); stress granule
  17. Biol Open. 2021 Jan 25. pii: bio.057992. [Epub ahead of print]
      Auxins are plant growth regulators that influence most aspects of plant development through complex mechanisms. The development of an auxin-inducible degradation (AID) system has enabled rapid, conditional protein depletion in yeast and cultured cells. More recently, the system was successfully adapted to C. elegans to achieve auxin-dependent degradation of targets in all tissues and developmental stages. Whether auxin treatment alone has an impact on nematode physiology is an open question. Here we show that indole-3-acetic acid (IAA), the auxin most commonly used to trigger AID in worms, functions through the conserved IRE-1/XBP-1 branch of the Unfolded Protein Response (UPR) to promote resistance to Endoplasmic Reticulum (ER) stress. Because the UPR not only plays a central role in restoring ER homeostasis, but also promotes lipid biosynthesis and regulates lifespan, we suggest that extreme caution should be exercised when using the AID system to study these and related processes.
    Keywords:  Auxin; ER stress; Tunicamycin; Unfolded Protein Response
  18. Front Plant Sci. 2020 ;11 625033
      Most membrane and secreted proteins are glycosylated on certain asparagine (N) residues in the endoplasmic reticulum (ER), which is crucial for their correct folding and function. Protein folding is a fundamentally inefficient and error-prone process that can be easily interfered by genetic mutations, stochastic cellular events, and environmental stresses. Because misfolded proteins not only lead to functional deficiency but also produce gain-of-function cellular toxicity, eukaryotic organisms have evolved highly conserved ER-mediated protein quality control (ERQC) mechanisms to monitor protein folding, retain and repair incompletely folded or misfolded proteins, or remove terminally misfolded proteins via a unique ER-associated degradation (ERAD) mechanism. A crucial event that terminates futile refolding attempts of a misfolded glycoprotein and diverts it into the ERAD pathway is executed by removal of certain terminal α1,2-mannose (Man) residues of their N-glycans. Earlier studies were centered around an ER-type α1,2-mannosidase that specifically cleaves the terminal α1,2Man residue from the B-branch of the three-branched N-linked Man9GlcNAc2 (GlcNAc for N-acetylglucosamine) glycan, but recent investigations revealed that the signal that marks a terminally misfolded glycoprotein for ERAD is an N-glycan with an exposed α1,6Man residue generated by members of a unique folding-sensitive α1,2-mannosidase family known as ER-degradation enhancing α-mannosidase-like proteins (EDEMs). This review provides a historical recount of major discoveries that led to our current understanding on the role of demannosylating N-glycans in sentencing irreparable misfolded glycoproteins into ERAD. It also discusses conserved and distinct features of the demannosylation processes of the ERAD systems of yeast, mammals, and plants.
    Keywords:  asparagine-linked glycan; endoplasmic reticulum; endoplasmic reticulum-associated degradation; mannosidase; protein disulfide isomerases
  19. J Biol Chem. 2020 Feb 07. pii: S0021-9258(17)49867-X. [Epub ahead of print]295(6): 1694-1703
      Small-molecule inhibitors of translation are critical tools to study the molecular mechanisms of protein synthesis. In this study, we sought to characterize how QL47, a host-targeted, small-molecule antiviral agent, inhibits steady-state viral protein expression. We demonstrate that this small molecule broadly inhibits both viral and host protein synthesis and targets a translation step specific to eukaryotic cells. We show that QL47 inhibits protein neosynthesis initiated by both canonical cap-driven and noncanonical initiation strategies, most likely by targeting an early step in translation elongation. Our findings thus establish QL47 as a new small-molecule inhibitor that can be utilized to probe the eukaryotic translation machinery and that can be further developed as a new therapeutic agent.
    Keywords:  anticancer drug; antiviral agent; inhibition mechanism; small molecule; translation
  20. Biochimie. 2021 Jan 22. pii: S0300-9084(21)00022-5. [Epub ahead of print]
      Suppressor of Cytokine Signaling 1 (SOCS1) functions as a tumor suppressor in hepatocellular carcinoma and many other types of cancers. SOCS1 mediates its functions by inhibiting tyrosine kinases, promoting ubiquitination and proteasomal degradation of signal transducing proteins, and by modulating transcription factors. Here, we studied the impact of SOCS1 on the hepatocyte proteome using Stable Isotopic Labelling of Amino acids in Cell culture (SILAC)-based mass spectrometry on the Hepa1-6 murine HCC cell line stably expressing wildtype SOCS1 or a mutant SOCS1 with impaired SH2 domain. As SOCS1 regulates the hepatocyte growth factor (HGF) receptor, the MET receptor tyrosine kinase (RTK), the SILAC-labelled cells were stimulated or not with HGF. Following mass spectrometry analysis, differentially modulated proteins were identified, quantified and analyzed for pathway enrichment. Of the 3440 proteins identified in Hepa-SOCS1 cells at steady state, 181 proteins were significantly modulated compared to control cells. The SH2 domain mutation and HGF increased the number of differentially modulated proteins. Protein interaction network analysis revealed enrichment of SOCS1-modulated proteins within multiprotein complexes such as ubiquitin conjugating enzymes, proteasome, mRNA spliceosome, mRNA exosome and mitochondrial ribosome. Notably, the expression of UBE2D ubiquitin conjugating enzyme, which is implicated in the control of growth factor receptor tyrosine kinase signaling, was found to be regulated by SOCS1. These findings suggest that SOCS1, induced by cytokines, growth factors and diverse other stimuli, has the potential to dynamically modulate of large macromolecular regulatory complexes to help maintain cellular homeostasis.
    Keywords:  Hepatocyte; MET; SOCS1; UBE2D; Ubiquitination
  21. Front Cell Dev Biol. 2020 ;8 610689
      Protein translocation across membranes is a critical facet of protein biogenesis in compartmentalized cells as proteins synthesized in the cytoplasm often need to traverse across lipid bilayers via proteinaceous channels to reach their final destinations. It is well established that protein biogenesis is tightly linked to various protein quality control processes, which monitor errors in protein folding, modification, and localization. However, little is known about how cells cope with translocation defective polypeptides that clog translocation channels (translocons) during protein translocation. This review summarizes recent studies, which collectively reveal a set of translocon-associated quality control strategies for eliminating polypeptides stuck in protein-conducting channels in the endoplasmic reticulum and mitochondria.
    Keywords:  UFM1; endoplasmic reticulum; protein translocation; ribosome UFMylation; ribosome stalling; ribosome-associated quality control; translocon clogging; translocon-associated quality control
  22. PLoS Negl Trop Dis. 2021 Jan 25. 15(1): e0009072
      Usutu virus (USUV) is an African mosquito-borne flavivirus closely related to West Nile, Japanese encephalitis, Zika, and dengue viruses. USUV emerged in 1996 in Europe, where quickly spread across the continent causing a considerable number of bird deaths and varied neurological disorders in humans, including encephalitis, meningoencephalitis, or facial paralysis, thus warning about USUV as a potential health threat. USUV replication takes place on the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) of infected cells, inducing ER stress and resulting in the activation of stress-related cellular pathways collectively known as the integrated stress response (ISR). The alpha subunit of the eukaryotic initiation factor eIF2 (eIF2α), the core factor in this pathway, is phosphorylated by stress activated kinases: protein kinase R (PKR), PKR-like endoplasmic reticulum kinase (PERK), heme-regulated inhibitor kinase (HRI), and general control non-repressed 2 kinase (GCN2). Its phosphorylation results, among others, in the downstream inhibition of translation with accumulation of discrete foci in the cytoplasm termed stress granules (SGs). Our results indicated that USUV infection evades cellular stress response impairing eIF2α phosphorylation and SGs assembly induced by treatment with the HRI activator ArsNa. This protective effect was related with oxidative stress responses in USUV-infected cells. Overall, these results provide new insights into the complex connections between the stress response and flavivirus infection in order to maintain an adequate cellular environment for viral replication.
  23. Cell Discov. 2021 Jan 26. 7(1): 6
      Ubiquitylation is a critical post-translational modification that controls a wide variety of processes in eukaryotes. Ubiquitin chains of different topologies are specialized for different cellular functions and control the stability, activity, interaction properties, and localization of many different proteins. Recent work has highlighted a role for branched ubiquitin chains in the regulation of cell signaling and protein degradation pathways. Similar to their unbranched counterparts, branched ubiquitin chains are remarkably diverse in terms of their chemical linkages, structures, and the biological information they transmit. In this review, we discuss emerging themes related to the architecture, synthesis, and functions of branched ubiquitin chains. We also describe methodologies that have recently been developed to identify and decode the functions of these branched polymers.
  24. Diabetologia. 2021 Jan 27.
      AIMS/HYPOTHESIS: Levels of the microRNA (miRNA) miR-126-3p are programmed cell-autonomously in visceral adipose tissue of adult offspring born to obese female C57BL/6J mice. The spectrum of miR-126-3p targets and thus the consequences of its dysregulation for adipocyte metabolism are unknown. Therefore, the aim of the current study was to identify novel targets of miR-126-3p in vitro and then establish the outcomes of their dysregulation on adipocyte metabolism in vivo using a well-established maternal obesity mouse model.METHODS: miR-126-3p overexpression in 3T3-L1 pre-adipocytes followed by pulsed stable isotope labelling by amino acids in culture (pSILAC) was performed to identify novel targets of the miRNA. Well-established bioinformatics algorithms and luciferase assays were then employed to confirm those that were direct targets of miR-126-3p. Selected knockdown experiments were performed in vitro to define the consequences of target dysregulation. Quantitative real-time PCR, immunoblotting, histology, euglycaemic-hyperinsulinaemic clamps and glucose tolerance tests were performed to determine the phenotypic and functional outcomes of maternal programmed miR-126-3p levels in offspring adipose tissue.
    RESULTS: The proteomic approach confirmed the identity of known targets of miR-126-3p (including IRS-1) and identified Lunapark, an endoplasmic reticulum (ER) protein, as a novel one. We confirmed by luciferase assay that Lunapark was a direct target of miR-126-3p. Overexpression of miR-126-3p in vitro led to a reduction in Lunapark protein levels and increased Perk (also known as Eif2ak3) mRNA levels and small interference-RNA mediated knockdown of Lunapark led to increased Xbp1, spliced Xbp1, Chop (also known as Ddit3) and Perk mRNA levels and an ER stress transcriptional response in 3T3-L1 pre-adipocytes. Consistent with the results found in vitro, increased miR-126-3p expression in adipose tissue from adult mouse offspring born to obese dams was accompanied by decreased Lunapark and IRS-1 protein levels and increased markers of ER stress. At the whole-body level the animals displayed glucose intolerance.
    CONCLUSIONS/INTERPRETATION: Concurrently targeting IRS-1 and Lunapark, a nutritionally programmed increase in miR-126-3p causes adipose tissue insulin resistance and an ER stress response, both of which may contribute to impaired glucose tolerance. These findings provide a novel mechanism by which obesity during pregnancy leads to increased risk of type 2 diabetes in the offspring and therefore identify miR-126-3p as a potential therapeutic target.
    Keywords:  ER stress; Glucose metabolism; Lunapark; Maternal obesity; Nutritional programming; miR-126-3p
  25. Nat Cell Biol. 2021 Jan 25.
      Ribosomes are multicomponent molecular machines that synthesize all of the proteins of living cells. Most of the genes that encode the protein components of ribosomes are therefore essential. A reduction in gene dosage is often viable albeit deleterious and is associated with human syndromes, which are collectively known as ribosomopathies1-3. The cell biological basis of these pathologies has remained unclear. Here, we model human ribosomopathies in Drosophila and find widespread apoptosis and cellular stress in the resulting animals. This is not caused by insufficient protein synthesis, as reasonably expected. Instead, ribosomal protein deficiency elicits proteotoxic stress, which we suggest is caused by the accumulation of misfolded proteins that overwhelm the protein degradation machinery. We find that dampening the integrated stress response4 or autophagy increases the harm inflicted by ribosomal protein deficiency, suggesting that these activities could be cytoprotective. Inhibition of TOR activity-which decreases ribosomal protein production, slows down protein synthesis and stimulates autophagy5-reduces proteotoxic stress in our ribosomopathy model. Interventions that stimulate autophagy, combined with means of boosting protein quality control, could form the basis of a therapeutic strategy for this class of diseases.
  26. Blood. 2021 Jan 14. pii: blood.2020007452. [Epub ahead of print]
      MYC-driven B-cell lymphomas are addicted to elevated levels of ribosome biogenesis (RiBi), offering the potential for therapeutic intervention. However, it is unclear whether inhibition of RiBi suppresses lymphomagenesis through decreasing translational capacity and/or through p53-activation mediated by the impaired RiBi checkpoint (IRBC). Here we generated Eμ-Myc lymphoma cells expressing inducible shRNAs to either ribosomal protein (RP)L7a or RPL11, the latter an essential component of the IRBC. The loss of either protein reduced RiBi, protein synthesis, and cell proliferation to similar extents. However, only RPL7a depletion induced-p53-mediated apoptosis through the selective proteasomal degradation of anti-apoptotic MCL-1, indicating the critical role of the IRBC in this mechanism. Strikingly, low concentrations of the FDA-approved anti-cancer drug Actinomycin D (ActD) dramatically prolonged the survival of mice harboring Trp53+/+;Eμ-Myc, but not Trp53-/-;Eμ-Myc, lymphomas providing a rationale for treating MYC-driven B-cell lymphomas with ActD. Importantly, the molecular effects of ActD on Eμ-Myc cells were recapitulated in human B-cell lymphoma cell lines, highlighting the potential for ActD as a therapeutic avenue for p53 wild type lymphoma.
  27. Autophagy. 2021 Jan 25. 1-14
      Reticulophagy, the selective autophagy of endoplasmic reticulum (ER) components, is known to operate in eukaryotes from yeast and unicellular algae to animals and plants. Thus far, only ER-stress induced reticulophagy was reported and analyzed in plants. In this study we characterize a reticulophagy pathway in Arabidopsis thaliana that is triggered by dark-induced starvation but not by ER stress. This pathway is defined by the previously reported ATG8-interacting proteins, ATI1 and ATI2. We further identified the ER-localized MSBP1 (Membrane Steroid Binding Protein 1) as an ATI1- and ATI2-interacting protein and an autophagy cargo, and show that ATI1 and ATI2 serve as its cargo receptors. Together, these findings expand our knowledge on plant responses during energy deprivation and highlight the role of this special type of reticulophagy in this process. Abbreviations: AGO1: ARGONAUTE 1; ATI: ATG8-Interacting Protein; BiFC: Bimolecular Fluorescence Complementation; BR: brassinosteroid; conA: concanamycin A; DMSO: dimethyl sulfoxid; DTT: dithiothreitol; ER: endoplasmic reticulum; GFP: green fluorescent protein; MAPR: Membrane-Associated Progesterone Binding Protein; MSBP: Membrane Steroid Binding Protein; SD: standard deviation; SE: standard error; TM: tunicamycin; TOR: target of rapamycin; Y2H: yeast two-hybrid.
    Keywords:   Arabidopsis thaliana ; ER-Phagy; TOR; autophagy; cargo receptor; organelle degradation; reticulophagy
  28. Front Microbiol. 2020 ;11 619430
      Protein homeostasis of bacterial cells is maintained by coordinated processes of protein production, folding, and degradation. Translational efficiency of a given mRNA depends on how often the ribosomes initiate synthesis of a new polypeptide and how quickly they read the coding sequence to produce a full-length protein. The pace of ribosomes along the mRNA is not uniform: periods of rapid synthesis are separated by pauses. Here, we summarize recent evidence on how ribosome pausing affects translational efficiency and protein folding. We discuss the factors that slow down translation elongation and affect the quality of the newly synthesized protein. Ribosome pausing emerges as important factor contributing to the regulatory programs that ensure the quality of the proteome and integrate the cellular and environmental cues into regulatory circuits of the cell.
    Keywords:  cotranslational folding; nascent peptide; prokaryotes; ribosome pausing; tRNA; translation; translation efficiency
  29. Mol Cell Proteomics. 2014 Feb;pii: S1535-9476(20)34643-0. [Epub ahead of print]13(2): 537-550
      Arginine phosphorylation is an emerging protein modification implicated in the general stress response of Gram-positive bacteria. The modification is mediated by the arginine kinase McsB, which phosphorylates and inactivates the heat shock repressor CtsR. In this study, we developed a mass spectrometric approach accounting for the peculiar chemical properties of phosphoarginine. The improved methodology was used to analyze the dynamic changes in the Bacillus subtilis arginine phosphoproteome in response to different stress situations. Quantitative analysis showed that a B. subtilis mutant lacking the YwlE arginine phosphatase accumulated a strikingly large number of arginine phosphorylations (217 sites in 134 proteins), however only a minor fraction of these sites was increasingly modified during heat shock or oxidative stress. The main targets of McsB-mediated arginine phosphorylation comprise central factors of the stress response system including the CtsR and HrcA heat shock repressors, as well as major components of the protein quality control system such as the ClpCP protease and the GroEL chaperonine. These findings highlight the impact of arginine phosphorylation in orchestrating the bacterial stress response.
  30. Int J Mol Sci. 2021 Jan 20. pii: E1013. [Epub ahead of print]22(3):
      Autophagy is a major quality control system for degradation of unwanted or damaged cytoplasmic components to promote cellular homeostasis. Although non-selective bulk degradation of cytoplasm by autophagy plays a role during cellular response to nutrient deprivation, the broad roles of autophagy are primarily mediated by selective clearance of specifically targeted components. Selective autophagy relies on cargo receptors that recognize targeted components and recruit them to autophagosomes through interaction with lapidated autophagy-related protein 8 (ATG8) family proteins anchored in the membrane of the forming autophagosomes. In mammals and yeast, a large collection of selective autophagy receptors have been identified that mediate the selective autophagic degradation of organelles, aggregation-prone misfolded proteins and other unwanted or nonnative proteins. A substantial number of selective autophagy receptors have also been identified and functionally characterized in plants. Some of the autophagy receptors in plants are evolutionarily conserved with homologs in other types of organisms, while a majority of them are plant-specific or plant species-specific. Plant selective autophagy receptors mediate autophagic degradation of not only misfolded, nonactive and otherwise unwanted cellular components but also regulatory and signaling factors and play critical roles in plant responses to a broad spectrum of biotic and abiotic stresses. In this review, we summarize the research on selective autophagy in plants, with an emphasis on the cargo recognition and the biological functions of plant selective autophagy receptors.
    Keywords:  ER-phagy; NBR1; aggrephagy; autophagy; drought tolerance; plants stress responses; plastid recycling; selective autophagy receptors
  31. ACS Med Chem Lett. 2021 Jan 14. 12(1): 74-81
      Repurposing E3 ubiquitin ligases for targeted protein degradation via customized molecular glues or proteolysis-targeting chimeras (PROTACs) is an increasingly important therapeutic modality. Currently, a major limitation in the design of suitable molecular glues and PROTACs is our fragmentary understanding of E3 ligases and their ligand space. We here describe a quantitative assay for the discovery and characterization of E3 ligase ligands that is based on the thermophoretic behavior of a custom reporter ligand. Thereby, it is orthogonal to commonly employed fluorescence-based assays and less affected by the optical properties of test compounds. It can be employed for the high-throughput screening of compound libraries for a given ligase but also for hit validation, which we demonstrate with the identification of unexpected well-binders and non-binders, yielding new insights into the ligand space of cereblon (CRBN).
  32. Nat Commun. 2021 01 27. 12(1): 614
      Infiltrating gliomas are devastating and incurable tumors. Amongst all gliomas, those harboring a mutation in isocitrate dehydrogenase 1 mutation (IDH1mut) acquire a different tumor biology and clinical manifestation from those that are IDH1WT. Understanding the unique metabolic profile reprogrammed by IDH1 mutation has the potential to identify new molecular targets for glioma therapy. Herein, we uncover increased monounsaturated fatty acids (MUFA) and their phospholipids in endoplasmic reticulum (ER), generated by IDH1 mutation, that are responsible for Golgi and ER dilation. We demonstrate a direct link between the IDH1 mutation and this organelle morphology via D-2HG-induced stearyl-CoA desaturase (SCD) overexpression, the rate-limiting enzyme in MUFA biosynthesis. Inhibition of IDH1 mutation or SCD silencing restores ER and Golgi morphology, while D-2HG and oleic acid induces morphological defects in these organelles. Moreover, addition of oleic acid, which tilts the balance towards elevated levels of MUFA, produces IDH1mut-specific cellular apoptosis. Collectively, these results suggest that IDH1mut-induced SCD overexpression can rearrange the distribution of lipids in the organelles of glioma cells, providing new insight into the link between lipid metabolism and organelle morphology in these cells, with potential and unique therapeutic implications.
  33. Elife. 2021 Jan 25. pii: e62640. [Epub ahead of print]10
      TRIM37 is an E3 ubiquitin ligase mutated in Mulibrey nanism, a disease with impaired organ growth and increased tumor formation. TRIM37 depletion from tissue culture cells results in supernumerary foci bearing the centriolar protein Centrin. Here, we characterize these centriolar protein assemblies (Cenpas) to uncover the mechanism of action of TRIM37. We find that an atypical de novo assembly pathway can generate Cenpas that act as microtubule organizing centers (MTOCs), including in Mulibrey patient cells. Correlative light electron microscopy reveals that Cenpas are centriole-related or electron-dense structures with stripes. TRIM37 regulates the stability and solubility of Centrobin, which accumulates in elongated entities resembling the striped electron dense structures upon TRIM37 depletion. Furthermore, Cenpas formation upon TRIM37 depletion requires PLK4, as well as two parallel pathways relying respectively on Centrobin and PLK1. Overall, our work uncovers how TRIM37 prevents Cenpas formation, which would otherwise threaten genome integrity, including in Mulibrey patients.
    Keywords:  cell biology; human
  34. Nat Chem Biol. 2021 Jan 25.
      The adenosine monophosphate (AMP)-activated protein kinase (Ampk) is a central regulator of metabolic pathways, and increasing Ampk activity has been considered to be an attractive therapeutic target. Here, we have identified an orphan ubiquitin E3 ligase subunit protein, Fbxo48, that targets the active, phosphorylated Ampkα (pAmpkα) for polyubiquitylation and proteasomal degradation. We have generated a novel Fbxo48 inhibitory compound, BC1618, whose potency in stimulating Ampk-dependent signaling greatly exceeds 5-aminoimidazole-4-carboxamide-1-β-ribofuranoside (AICAR) or metformin. This compound increases the biological activity of Ampk not by stimulating the activation of Ampk, but rather by preventing activated pAmpkα from Fbxo48-mediated degradation. We demonstrate that, consistent with augmenting Ampk activity, BC1618 promotes mitochondrial fission, facilitates autophagy and improves hepatic insulin sensitivity in high-fat-diet-induced obese mice. Hence, we provide a unique bioactive compound that inhibits pAmpkα disposal. Together, these results define a new pathway regulating Ampk biological activity and demonstrate the potential utility of modulating this pathway for therapeutic benefit.
  35. Nat Chem Biol. 2021 Jan 28.
      Autophagy is an essential cellular process that removes harmful protein species, and autophagy upregulation may be able to protect against neurodegeneration and various pathogens. Here, we have identified the essential protein VCP/p97 (VCP, valosin-containing protein) as a novel regulator of autophagosome biogenesis, where VCP regulates autophagy induction in two ways, both dependent on Beclin-1. Utilizing small-molecule inhibitors of VCP ATPase activity, we show that VCP stabilizes Beclin-1 levels by promoting the deubiquitinase activity of ataxin-3 towards Beclin-1. VCP also regulates the assembly and activity of the Beclin-1-containing phosphatidylinositol-3-kinase (PI3K) complex I, thus regulating the production of PI(3)P, a key signaling lipid responsible for the recruitment of downstream autophagy factors. A decreased level of VCP, or inhibition of its ATPase activity, impairs starvation-induced production of PI(3)P and limits downstream recruitment of WIPI2, ATG16L and LC3, thereby decreasing autophagosome formation, illustrating an important role for VCP in early autophagy initiation.
  36. Diabetes. 2021 Jan 26. pii: db201174. [Epub ahead of print]
      MANF is an endoplasmic reticulum resident protein that plays a crucial role in attenuating ER stress responses. Although MANF is indispensable for the survival and function of mouse beta cells, its precise role in human beta cell development and function is unknown. Herein, we show that lack of MANF in humans results in diabetes due to increased ER stress leading to impaired beta cell function. We identified two patients from different families with childhood diabetes and a neurodevelopmental disorder associated with homozygous loss-of-function mutations in the MANF gene. To study the role of MANF in human beta cell development and function, we knocked out the MANF gene in human embryonic stem cells and differentiated them into pancreatic endocrine cells. Loss of MANF induced mild ER stress and impaired insulin processing capacity of beta cells in vitro Upon implantation to immunocompromised mice, the MANF knockout grafts presented elevated ER stress and functional failure, particularly in diabetic recipients. By describing a new form of monogenic neurodevelopmental diabetes syndrome caused by disturbed ER function, we highlight the importance of adequate ER stress regulation for proper human beta cell function and demonstrate the crucial role of MANF in this process.
  37. Nat Commun. 2021 Jan 29. 12(1): 713
      Despite proteotoxic stress and heat shock being implicated in diverse pathologies, currently no methodology to inflict defined, subcellular thermal damage exists. Here, we present such a single-cell method compatible with laser-scanning microscopes, adopting the plasmon resonance principle. Dose-defined heat causes protein damage in subcellular compartments, rapid heat-shock chaperone recruitment, and ensuing engagement of the ubiquitin-proteasome system, providing unprecedented insights into the spatiotemporal response to thermal damage relevant for degenerative diseases, with broad applicability in biomedicine. Using this versatile method, we discover that HSP70 chaperone and its interactors are recruited to sites of thermally damaged proteins within seconds, and we report here mechanistically important determinants of such HSP70 recruitment. Finally, we demonstrate a so-far unsuspected involvement of p97(VCP) translocase in the processing of heat-damaged proteins. Overall, we report an approach to inflict targeted thermal protein damage and its application to elucidate cellular stress-response pathways that are emerging as promising therapeutic targets.
  38. EMBO J. 2021 Jan 28. e104123
      Upstream open reading frames (uORFs) are known to negatively affect translation of the downstream ORF. The regulatory proteins involved in relieving this inhibition are however poorly characterized. In response to cellular stress, eIF2α phosphorylation leads to an inhibition of global protein synthesis, while translation of specific factors such as CHOP is induced. We analyzed a 105-nt inhibitory uORF in the transcript of human CHOP (huORFchop ) and found that overexpression of the zebrafish or human ENDOU poly(U)-endoribonuclease (Endouc or ENDOU-1, respectively) increases CHOP mRNA translation also in the absence of stress. We also found that Endouc/ENDOU-1 binds and cleaves the huORFchop transcript at position 80G-81U, which induces CHOP translation independently of phosphorylated eIF2α. However, both ENDOU and phospho-eIF2α are nonetheless required for maximal translation of CHOP mRNA. Increased levels of ENDOU shift a huORFchop reporter as well as endogenous CHOP transcripts from the monosome to polysome fraction, indicating an increase in translation. Furthermore, we found that the uncapped truncated huORFchop -69-105-nt transcript contains an internal ribosome entry site (IRES), facilitating translation of the cleaved transcript. Therefore, we propose a model where ENDOU-mediated transcript cleavage positively regulates CHOP translation resulting in increased CHOP protein levels upon stress. Specifically, CHOP transcript cleavage changes the configuration of huORFchop thereby releasing its inhibition and allowing the stalled ribosomes to resume translation of the downstream ORF.
    Keywords:  CHOP; Zebrafish Endouc; human ENDOU-1; translational control; uORF
  39. J Pharmacol Exp Ther. 2021 Jan 29. pii: JPET-AR-2020-000417. [Epub ahead of print]
      We have created a novel glutathione S-transferase Pi 1 (gstp1) knockout (KO) zebrafish model and used it for comparative analyses of redox homeostasis, response to drugs that cause endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress and induce the unfolded protein response (UPR). Under basal conditions, gstp1 KO larvae had higher expression of antioxidant nuclear factor erythroid 2-related factor 2 (Nrf2) accompanied by a more reduced larval environment and a status consistent with reductive stress. Compared to wild type (WT), various UPR markers were decreased in KO larvae, but treatment with drugs that induce ER stress caused greater toxicities and increased expression of Nrf2 and UPR markers in KO; tunicamycin (TuM) and 02-{2,4-dinitro-5-[4-(N-methylamino) benzoyloxy] phenyl} 1-(N,N-dimethylamino) diazen-1-ium-1,2-diolate (PABA/NO) activated IRE1/XBP1 pathways, while thapsigargin (ThG) caused greater activation of PERK/ATF4/CHOP pathways. These results suggest that this teleost model is useful in predicting how GSTP regulates organismal management of oxidative/reductive stress and is a determinant of response to drug-induced ER stress and the UPR. Significance Statement A new zebrafish model has been created to study the importance of Gstp1 in development, redox homeostasis and response to drugs that enact cytotoxicity through ER-stress and induction of the UPR.
    Keywords:  Endoplasmic reticulum stress; Gene editing/CRISPR; Glutathione S-transferase (GST)
  40. Front Cell Dev Biol. 2020 ;8 622215
      Membrane contact sites (MCS) are typically defined as areas of proximity between heterologous or homologous membranes characterized by specific proteins. The study of MCS is considered as an emergent field that shows how crucial organelle interactions are in cell physiology. MCS regulate a myriad of physiological processes such as apoptosis, calcium, and lipid signaling, just to name a few. The membranal interactions between the endoplasmic reticulum (ER)-mitochondria, the ER-plasma membrane, and the vesicular traffic have received special attention in recent years, particularly in cancer research, in which it has been proposed that MCS regulate tumor metabolism and fate, contributing to their progression. However, as the therapeutic or diagnostic potential of MCS has not been fully revisited, in this review, we provide recent information on MCS relevance on calcium and lipid signaling in cancer cells and on its role in tumor progression. We also describe some proteins associated with MCS, like CERT, STIM1, VDAC, and Orai, that impact on cancer progression and that could be a possible diagnostic marker. Overall, these information might contribute to the understanding of the complex biology of cancer cells.
    Keywords:  calcium signaling; cancer progression; lipid signaling; membrane contact sites; metastasis
  41. Cell Biosci. 2021 Jan 29. 11(1): 26
      Colorectal cancer (CRC) is a gastrointestinal malignancy originating from either the colon or the rectum. A growing number of researches prove that the unfolded protein response (UPR) is closely related to the occurrence and progression of colorectal cancer. The UPR has three canonical endoplasmic reticulum (ER) transmembrane protein sensors: inositol requiring kinase 1 (IRE1), pancreatic ER eIF2α kinase (PERK), and activating transcription factor 6 (ATF6). Each of the three pathways is closely associated with CRC development. The three pathways are relatively independent as well as interrelated. Under ER stress, the activated UPR boosts the protein folding capacity to maximize cell adaptation and survival, whereas sustained or excessive ER triggers cell apoptosis conversely. The UPR involves different stages of CRC pathogenesis, promotes or hinders the progression of CRC, and will pave the way for novel therapeutic and diagnostic approaches. Meanwhile, the correlation between different signal branches in UPR and the switch between the adaptation and apoptosis pathways still need to be further investigated in the future.
    Keywords:  Activating transcription factor 6; Colorectal cancer; Inositol requiring kinase 1; Pancreatic ER eIF2α kinase; Unfolded protein response
  42. Nat Cell Biol. 2021 Jan 25.
      Cell competition allows winner cells to eliminate less fit loser cells in tissues. In Minute cell competition, cells with a heterozygous mutation in ribosome genes, such as RpS3+/- cells, are eliminated by wild-type cells. How cells are primed as losers is partially understood and it has been proposed that reduced translation underpins the loser status of ribosome mutant, or Minute, cells. Here, using Drosophila, we show that reduced translation does not cause cell competition. Instead, we identify proteotoxic stress as the underlying cause of the loser status for Minute competition and competition induced by mahjong, an unrelated loser gene. RpS3+/- cells exhibit reduced autophagic and proteasomal flux, accumulate protein aggregates and can be rescued from competition by improving their proteostasis. Conversely, inducing proteotoxic stress is sufficient to turn otherwise wild-type cells into losers. Thus, we propose that tissues may preserve their health through a proteostasis-based mechanism of cell competition and cell selection.
  43. Int J Mol Sci. 2021 Jan 21. pii: 1061. [Epub ahead of print]22(3):
      Misfolded and/or unassembled secretory and membrane proteins in the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) may be retro-translocated into the cytoplasm, where they undergo ER-associated degradation, or ERAD. The mechanisms by which misfolded proteins are recognized and degraded through this pathway have been studied extensively; however, our understanding of the physiological role of ERAD remains limited. This review describes the biosynthesis and quality control of glycosylphosphatidylinositol (GPI)-anchored proteins and briefly summarizes the relevance of ERAD to these processes. While recent studies suggest that ERAD functions as a fail-safe mechanism for the degradation of misfolded GPI-anchored proteins, several pieces of evidence suggest an intimate interaction between ERAD and the biosynthesis of GPI-anchored proteins.
    Keywords:  Ca2+/Mn2+ P-type ATPase; Doa10; ERAD; GPI-anchored protein; Hrd1; Saccharomyces cerevisiae; Ubc6; Ubc7
  44. Oxid Med Cell Longev. 2021 ;2021 8836818
      Sigma-1 receptor (Sig1R), a chaperone in the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) membrane, has been implicated in cardiac hypertrophy; however, its role in cardiac fibroblast activation has not been established. This study investigated the possible association between Sig1R and this activation by subjecting mice to sham, transverse aortic constriction (TAC), and TAC plus fluvoxamine (an agonist of Sig1R) treatments. Cardiac function and fibrosis were evaluated four weeks later by echocardiography and histological staining. In an in vitro study, neonatal rat cardiac fibroblasts were treated with fluvoxamine or NE-100 (an antagonist of Sig1R) in the presence or absence of transforming growth factor beta1 (TGF-β1). Fibrotic markers, ER stress pathways, and autophagy were then investigated by qPCR, western blotting, immunofluorescence, confocal microscopy, and transmission electron microscopy. Fluvoxamine treatment reduced cardiac fibrosis, preserved cardiac function, and attenuated cardiac fibroblast activation. Inhibition of the IRE1/XBP1 pathway, a branch of ER stress, by a specific inhibitor of IRE1 endonuclease activity, attenuated the pathological process. Fluvoxamine stimulation of Sig1R restored autophagic flux in cardiac fibroblasts, indicating that Sig1R appears to play a protective role in the activation of cardiac fibroblasts by inhibiting the IRE1 pathway and restoring autophagic flux. Sig1R may therefore represent a therapeutic target for cardiac fibrosis.
  45. FEBS Lett. 2021 Jan 26.
      A total of 10-20% of plasma membrane proteins are anchored by glycosylphosphatidylinositol (GPI). GPI is attached to proteins by GPI transamidase (GPI-T), which contains five subunits named PIGK, PIGS, PIGT, PIGU, and GPAA1. We previously reported that PIGT localizes near the nucleus in Drosophila. However, localizations of the other four subunits remain unknown. Here, we show that a catalytic subunit of GPI-T, PIGK, mainly localizes to the endoplasmic reticulum (ER), while the other four subunits localize to the nuclear envelope (NE) and ER. The NE/ER localization ratio of PIGS differs between cell types and developmental stages. Our results suggest that GPI-T catalyzes GPI attachment in the ER and the other four subunits may have other unknown functions in the NE.
    Keywords:  Drosophila; GPI transamidase complex; endoplasmic reticulum; enzyme complex; glycosylphosphatidylinositol; nuclear envelope; protein stability; transamidation
  46. Genes (Basel). 2021 Jan 22. pii: 139. [Epub ahead of print]12(2):
      Ca2+ signaling plays a pivotal role in the control of cellular homeostasis and aberrant regulation of Ca2+ fluxes have a strong impact on cellular functioning. As a consequence of this ubiquitous role, Ca2+ signaling dysregulation is involved in the pathophysiology of multiple diseases including cancer. Indeed, multiple studies have highlighted the role of Ca2+ fluxes in all the steps of cancer progression. In particular, the transfer of Ca2+ at the ER-mitochondrial contact sites, also known as mitochondrial associated membranes (MAMs), has been shown to be crucial for cancer cell survival. One of the proteins enriched at this site is the sigma-1 receptor (S1R), a protein that has been described as a Ca2+-sensitive chaperone that exerts a protective function in cells in various ways, including the modulation of Ca2+ signaling. Interestingly, S1R is overexpressed in many types of cancer even though the exact mechanisms by which it promotes cell survival are not fully elucidated. This review summarizes the findings describing the roles of S1R in the control of Ca2+ signaling and its involvement in cancer progression.
    Keywords:  Ca2+ signalling; Sigma-1 receptor; cancer
  47. Front Cell Dev Biol. 2020 ;8 619022
      In the secretory pathway, the transfer of cargo from the ER to the Golgi involves dozens of proteins that localize at specific regions of the ER called ER exit sites (ERES), where cargos are concentrated preceding vesicular transport to the Golgi. Despite many years of research, we are missing crucial details of how this highly dynamic ER-Golgi interface is defined, maintained and functions. Mechanisms allowing secretion of large cargos such as the very abundant collagens are also poorly understood. In this context, Tango1, discovered in the fruit fly Drosophila and widely conserved in animal evolution, has received a lot of attention in recent years. Tango1, an ERES-localized transmembrane protein, is the single fly member of the MIA/cTAGE family, consisting in humans of TANGO1 and at least 14 different related proteins. After its discovery in flies, a specific role of human TANGO1 in mediating secretion of collagens was reported. However, multiple studies in Drosophila have demonstrated that Tango1 is required for secretion of all cargos. At all ERES, through self-interaction and interactions with other proteins, Tango1 aids ERES maintenance and tethering of post-ER membranes. In this review, we discuss discoveries on Drosophila Tango1 and put them in relation with research on human MIA/cTAGE proteins. In doing so, we aim to offer an integrated view of Tango1 function and the nature of ER-Golgi transport from an evolutionary perspective.
    Keywords:  COPII; ER exit site; collagen; extracellular matrix; secretion; traffic
  48. Am J Hum Genet. 2021 Jan 25. pii: S0002-9297(21)00008-2. [Epub ahead of print]
      Focal segmental glomerulosclerosis (FSGS) is the main pathology underlying steroid-resistant nephrotic syndrome (SRNS) and a leading cause of chronic kidney disease. Monogenic forms of pediatric SRNS are predominantly caused by recessive mutations, while the contribution of de novo variants (DNVs) to this trait is poorly understood. Using exome sequencing (ES) in a proband with FSGS/SRNS, developmental delay, and epilepsy, we discovered a nonsense DNV in TRIM8, which encodes the E3 ubiquitin ligase tripartite motif containing 8. To establish whether TRIM8 variants represent a cause of FSGS, we aggregated exome/genome-sequencing data for 2,501 pediatric FSGS/SRNS-affected individuals and 48,556 control subjects, detecting eight heterozygous TRIM8 truncating variants in affected subjects but none in control subjects (p = 3.28 × 10-11). In all six cases with available parental DNA, we demonstrated de novo inheritance (p = 2.21 × 10-15). Reverse phenotyping revealed neurodevelopmental disease in all eight families. We next analyzed ES from 9,067 individuals with epilepsy, yielding three additional families with truncating TRIM8 variants. Clinical review revealed FSGS in all. All TRIM8 variants cause protein truncation clustering within the last exon between residues 390 and 487 of the 551 amino acid protein, indicating a correlation between this syndrome and loss of the TRIM8 C-terminal region. Wild-type TRIM8 overexpressed in immortalized human podocytes and neuronal cells localized to nuclear bodies, while constructs harboring patient-specific variants mislocalized diffusely to the nucleoplasm. Co-localization studies demonstrated that Gemini and Cajal bodies frequently abut a TRIM8 nuclear body. Truncating TRIM8 DNVs cause a neuro-renal syndrome via aberrant TRIM8 localization, implicating nuclear bodies in FSGS and developmental brain disease.
    Keywords:  FSGS; SRNS; TRIM8; epilepsy; genomics; monogenic; nuclear body
  49. Plant Commun. 2021 Jan 11. 2(1): 100091
      The post-translational protein modification known as SUMOylation has conserved roles in the heat stress responses of various species. The functional connection between the global regulation of gene expression and chromatin-associated SUMOylation in plant cells is unknown. Here, we uncovered a genome-wide relationship between chromatin-associated SUMOylation and transcriptional switches in Arabidopsis thaliana grown at room temperature, exposed to heat stress, and exposed to heat stress followed by recovery. The small ubiquitin-like modifier (SUMO)-associated chromatin sites, characterized by whole-genome ChIP-seq, were generally associated with active chromatin markers. In response to heat stress, chromatin-associated SUMO signals increased at promoter-transcriptional start site regions and decreased in gene bodies. RNA-seq analysis supported the role of chromatin-associated SUMOylation in transcriptional activation during rapid responses to high temperature. Changes in SUMO signals on chromatin were associated with the upregulation of heat-responsive genes and the downregulation of growth-related genes. Disruption of the SUMO ligase gene SIZ1 abolished SUMO signals on chromatin and attenuated rapid transcriptional responses to heat stress. The SUMO signal peaks were enriched in DNA elements recognized by distinct groups of transcription factors under different temperature conditions. These observations provide evidence that chromatin-associated SUMOylation regulates the transcriptional switch between development and heat stress response in plant cells.
    Keywords:  SUMOylation; chromatin; development; heat stress; plant cells; transcription
  50. Mol Hum Reprod. 2021 Jan 25. pii: gaab003. [Epub ahead of print]
      Recent studies have uncovered the critical role of aryl hydrocarbon receptor (AHR) in various diseases, including obesity and cancer progression, independent of its previously identified role as a receptor for endocrine-disrupting chemicals (EDCs). We previously demonstrated that endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress, a newly recognized local factor in the follicular microenvironment, is activated in granulosa cells from patients with polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) and a mouse model of the disease. By affecting diverse functions of granulosa cells, ER stress contributes to PCOS pathology. We hypothesized that expression of AHR and activation of its downstream signaling were upregulated by ER stress in granulosa cells, irrespective of the presence of EDCs, thereby promoting PCOS pathogenesis. In this study, we found that AHR, AHR nuclear translocator (ARNT), and AHR target gene cytochrome P450 1B1 (CYP1B1) were upregulated in the granulosa cells of PCOS patients and model mice. We examined CYP1B1 as a representative AHR target gene. AHR and ARNT were upregulated by ER stress in human granulosa-lutein cells (GLCs), resulting in an increase in the expression and activity of CYP1B1. Administration of the AHR antagonist CH223191 to PCOS mice restored estrous cycling and decreased the number of atretic antral follicles, concomitant with downregulation of AHR and CYP1B1 in granulosa cells. Taken together, our findings indicate that AHR activated by ER stress in the follicular microenvironment contributes to PCOS pathology, and that AHR represents a novel therapeutic target for PCOS.
    Keywords:  aryl hydrocarbon receptor; cytochrome P450 1B1; endoplasmic reticulum stress; granulosa cell; polycystic ovary syndrome
  51. J Phys Chem B. 2021 Jan 25.
      Despite many studies on ligand-modulated protein mechanics, a comparative analysis of the role of ligand binding site on any specific protein fold is yet to be made. In this study, we explore the role of ligand binding site on the mechanical properties of β-grasp fold proteins, namely, ubiquitin and small ubiquitin related modifier 1 (SUMO1). The terminal segments directly connected through hydrogen bonds constitute the β-clamp geometry (or mechanical clamp), which confers high mechanical resilience to the β-grasp fold. Here, we study ubiquitin complexed with CUE2-1, a ubiquitin-binding domain (UBD) from yeast endonuclease protein Cue2, using a combination of single-molecule force spectroscopy (SMFS) and steered molecular dynamics (SMD) simulations. Our study reveals that CUE2-1 does not alter the mechanical properties of ubiquitin, despite directly interacting with its β-clamp. To explore the role of ligand binding site, we compare the mechanical properties of the ubiquitin/CUE2-1 complex with that of previously studied SUMO1/S12, another β-grasp protein complex, using SMD simulations. Simulations on the SUMO1/S12 complex corroborate previous experimentally observed enhancement in the mechanical stability of SUMO1, even though S12 binds away from the β-clamp. Differences in ligand binding-induced structural impact at the transition state of the two complexes explain the differences in ligand modulated protein mechanics. Contrary to previous reports, our study demonstrates that direct binding of ligands to the mechanical clamp does not necessarily alter the mechanical stability of β-grasp fold proteins. Rather, binding interactions away from the clamp can reinforce protein stability provided by the β-grasp fold. Our study highlights the importance of binding site and binding modes of ligands in modulating the mechanical stability of β-grasp fold proteins.
  52. Appl Immunohistochem Mol Morphol. 2021 Jan 22.
      Tripartite motif containing 24 (TRIM24) is a multifunctional protein involved in p53 degradation, chromatin binding, and transcriptional modulation of nuclear receptors. Emerging research has revealed that upregulation of TRIM24 in numerous tumor types is linked to poor prognosis, attributing an important role to TRIM24 in tumor biology. In order to better understand the role of TRIM24 in prostate cancer, we analyzed its immunohistochemical expression on a tissue microarray containing >17,000 prostate cancer specimens. TRIM24 immunostaining was detectable in 61% of 15,321 interpretable cancers, including low expression in 46% and high expression in 15% of cases. TRIM24 upregulation was associated with high Gleason grade, advanced pathologic tumor stage, lymph node metastasis, higher preoperative prostate-specific antigen level, increased cell proliferation as well as increased genomic instability, and predicted prognosis independent of clinicopathologic parameters available at the time of the initial biopsy (all P<0.0001). TRIM24 upregulation provides additional prognostic information in prostate cancer, particularly in patients with low Gleason grade tumors who may be eligible for active surveillance strategies, suggesting promising potential for TRIM24 in the routine diagnostic work-up of these patients.
  53. Cell Chem Biol. 2021 Jan 22. pii: S2451-9456(21)00005-2. [Epub ahead of print]
      The translation of functionally active natural products into fully synthetic small-molecule mimetics has remained an important process in medicinal chemistry. We recently discovered that the terpene natural product nimbolide can be utilized as a covalent recruiter of the E3 ubiquitin ligase RNF114 for use in targeted protein degradation-a powerful therapeutic modality within modern-day drug discovery. Using activity-based protein profiling-enabled covalent ligand-screening approaches, here we report the discovery of fully synthetic RNF114-based recruiter molecules that can also be exploited for PROTAC applications, and demonstrate their utility in degrading therapeutically relevant targets, such as BRD4 and BCR-ABL, in cells. The identification of simple and easily manipulated drug-like scaffolds that can mimic the function of a complex natural product is beneficial in further expanding the toolbox of E3 ligase recruiters, an area of great importance in drug discovery and chemical biology.
    Keywords:  PROTAC; RNF114; chemoproteomics; covalent ligand; cysteine; targeted protein degradation
  54. Front Cell Dev Biol. 2020 ;8 618652
      The coat protein complex II (COPII) mediates forward trafficking of protein and lipid cargoes from the endoplasmic reticulum. COPII is an ancient and essential pathway in all eukaryotes and COPII dysfunction underlies a range of human diseases. Despite this broad significance, major aspects of COPII trafficking remain incompletely understood. For example, while the biochemical features of COPII vesicle formation are relatively well characterized, much less is known about how the COPII system dynamically adjusts its activity to changing physiologic cues or stresses. Recently, post-transcriptional mechanisms have emerged as a major mode of COPII regulation. Here, we review the current literature on how post-transcriptional events, and especially post-translational modifications, govern the COPII pathway.
    Keywords:  COPII; autophagy; membrane trafficking; post-translation modification; signaling/signaling pathways
  55. Trends Genet. 2021 Jan 20. pii: S0168-9525(20)30335-8. [Epub ahead of print]
      Complex mechanisms are in place to maintain genome stability. Ubiquitination of chromatin plays a central role in these mechanisms. The ever-growing complexity of the ubiquitin (Ub) code and of chromatin modifications and dynamics challenges our ability to fully understand how histone ubiquitination regulates genome stability. Here we review the current knowledge on specific, low-abundant histone ubiquitination events that are highly regulated within the cellular DNA damage response (DDR), with particular emphasis on the latest discovery of Ub phosphorylation as a novel regulator of the DDR signaling pathway. We discuss players involved and potential implications of histone (phospho)ubiquitination on chromatin structure, and we highlight exciting open questions for future research.
    Keywords:  DDR; DNA damage response; H2AK15ub; RNF8/RNF168/USP51; chromatin modifications; pUbT12; ubiquitin phosphorylation
  56. Ann Transl Med. 2020 Dec;8(24): 1674
      Background: The microRNA-30 family plays a critical role in the pathogenesis of podocyte injury. Cx43 plays an essential role in intercellular communication, which is essential for coordinated kidney function. This study was conducted to explore the function of microRNA-30s/Cx43 in podocyte injury in diabetic nephropathy (DN), both in vivo and in vitro.Methods: SD rats were given streptozotocin (STZ) injections to induce DN. Podocytes were incubated in the medium in the presence or absence of high glucose (HG). The effects of the microRNA-30/Cx43 axis on DN and its underlying mechanisms were investigated by TUNEL assay, PAS, immunohistochemical staining, immunofluorescence staining, Western blot, RT-qPCR, RNA interference, and luciferase reporter assay. Podocytes were transfected with microRNA-30 family mimics, microRNA-30 family inhibitors, Cx43 siRNA, and negative controls to detect the effect of the microRNA-30/Cx43 axis. MicroRNA-30 family mimic AAVs, and microRNA-30 family inhibitor AAVs applied to regulate microRNA-30 family expression in the kidneys of the STZ-induced DN model rats to reveal the underlying mechanisms of the microRNA-30/Cx43 axis in DN.
    Results: MicroRNA-30 family member expression was downregulated in HG-treated podocytes and the glomeruli of STZ-induced DN rats. Luciferase reporter assays confirmed Cx43 is a directed target of microRNA-30s. The overexpression of microRNA-30 family members attenuated the HG-induced podocyte injury and protected against podocyte apoptosis and endoplasmic reticulum stress (ERS) both in vivo and in vitro. Also, silencing Cx43 expression eased podocyte apoptosis, injury, and ERS induced by a HG+microRNA-30 family inhibitor. Double-immunofluorescence staining assays proved the co-localization of caspase12 and Cx43.
    Conclusions: The overexpression of microRNA-30 family members prevents HG-induced podocyte injury and attenuates ERS by modulating Cx43 expression. The microRNA-30/Cx43/ERS axis might be a potential therapeutic target to treat DN.
    Keywords:  Cx43; MicroRNA-30s; diabetic nephrology; endoplasmic reticulum stress (ERS); podocyte
  57. Nucleic Acids Res. 2021 Jan 28. pii: gkab005. [Epub ahead of print]
      Ribosome stalling at tandem CGA codons or poly(A) sequences activates quality controls for nascent polypeptides including ribosome-associated quality control (RQC) and no-go mRNA decay (NGD). In RQC pathway, Hel2-dependent uS10 ubiquitination and the RQC-trigger (RQT) complex are essential for subunit dissociation, and Ltn1-dependent ubiquitination of peptidyl-tRNA in the 60S subunit requires Rqc2. Here, we report that polytryptophan sequences induce Rqc2-independent RQC. More than 11 consecutive tryptophan residues induced RQC in a manner dependent on Hel2-mediated ribosome ubiquitination and the RQT complex. Polytryptophan sequence-mediated RQC was not coupled with CAT-tailing, and Rqc2 was not required for Ltn1-dependent degradation of the arrest products. Eight consecutive tryptophan residues located at the region proximal to the peptidyl transferase center in the ribosome tunnel inhibited CAT-tailing by tandem CGA codons. Polytryptophan sequences also induced Hel2-mediated canonical RQC-coupled NGD and RQC-uncoupled NGD outside the stalled ribosomes. We propose that poly-tryptophan sequences induce Rqc2-independent RQC, suggesting that CAT-tailing in the 60S subunit could be modulated by the polypeptide in the ribosome exit tunnel.
  58. Arch Biochem Biophys. 2021 Jan 21. pii: S0003-9861(21)00023-0. [Epub ahead of print] 108773
      Fatty acids are essential cellular building blocks and a major energy source. Regardless of their metabolic fate, fatty acids first need to be activated by forming a thioester with a coenzyme A group. This reaction is carried out by acyl-CoA synthetases (ACSs), of which ACSL1 (long-chain acyl-CoA synthetase 1) is an important member. Two bacterial homologues of ACSL1 crystal structures have been solved previously. One is a soluble dimeric protein, and the other is a monomeric peripheral membrane protein. The mammalian ACSL1 is a membrane protein with an N-terminal transmembrane helix. To characterize the mammalian ACSL1, we purified the full-length mouse ACSL1 and reconstituted it into lipid nanodiscs. Using enzymatic assays, mutational analysis, and cryo-electron microscopy, we show that mouse ACSL1 is active as a monomer.
    Keywords:  Acyl-CoA synthetase; Electron microscopy; Enzyme kinetics; Fatty acid metabolism; Nanodisc; Structure-function
  59. Cell Signal. 2021 Jan 20. pii: S0898-6568(21)00010-3. [Epub ahead of print] 109922
      The study was conducted to assess the role of eukaryotic initiation factor 2 (eIF2α) in progressive dopaminergic neuronal death employing various interventions (YM08, 4μ8C, AEBSF, salubrinal, ursolic acid) of endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress signaling. The protein level of all the ER stress related signaling factors (GRP78, IRE1α, ATF6, eIF2α, ATF4, XBP-1, GADD153) were estimated after 3 and 7 day of experiment initiation. Findings with single administration of interventions showed that salubrinal exhibited significant protection against rotenone induced adverse alterations in comparison to other interventions. Therefore, further study was expanded with repeat dose of salubrinal. Rotenone administration in rat brain caused the significant biochemical alterations, dose dependent progressive neuronal apoptosis and altered neuronal morphology which was significantly attenuated with salubrinal treatment. In conclusion, findings showed that rotenone administration caused the dose dependent progressive neuronal death including cardinal role of eIF2α, suggesting the potential pharmacological utilization of salubrinal or salubrinal like molecules in therapeutics of Parkinson's diseases.
    Keywords:  Apoptosis; Endoplasmic reticulum stress; Parkinson's disease; Salubrinal; eIF2α
  60. Plant Sci. 2021 Feb;pii: S0168-9452(20)30364-2. [Epub ahead of print]303 110758
      IRE1 is a key factor in the Unfolded Protein Response (UPR) in plants. IRE1 is a single-pass transmembrane protein that has a lumenal domain (LD) and cytoplasmic domain (CD), which perform quite different tasks on different sides of the ER membrane. The LD recognizes the presence of misfolded proteins in the ER lumen. The LDs of IRE1 in different plant species are predicted to fold into β-propeller structures with surfaces for protein-protein interactions. Likewise, the CDs of plant IRE1s have predicted structural interfaces that promote the face-to-face arrangements of IRE1 for transphosphorylation and back-to-back arrangements for RNA splicing. Hence, the structures on the different faces of plant IRE1s have unique features for recognizing problems of protein folding in the ER and transducing that signal to activate the UPR.
    Keywords:  INOSITOL REQUIRING FACTOR 1; Messenger RNA splicing; Regulated IRE1-Dependent RNA Decay; Unfolded protein response; bZIP60
  61. EMBO Mol Med. 2021 Jan 29. e13167
      Severe α1 -antitrypsin deficiency results from the Z allele (Glu342Lys) that causes the accumulation of homopolymers of mutant α1 -antitrypsin within the endoplasmic reticulum of hepatocytes in association with liver disease. We have used a DNA-encoded chemical library to undertake a high-throughput screen to identify small molecules that bind to, and stabilise Z α1 -antitrypsin. The lead compound blocks Z α1 -antitrypsin polymerisation in vitro, reduces intracellular polymerisation and increases the secretion of Z α1 -antitrypsin threefold in an iPSC model of disease. Crystallographic and biophysical analyses demonstrate that GSK716 and related molecules bind to a cryptic binding pocket, negate the local effects of the Z mutation and stabilise the bound state against progression along the polymerisation pathway. Oral dosing of transgenic mice at 100 mg/kg three times a day for 20 days increased the secretion of Z α1 -antitrypsin into the plasma by sevenfold. There was no observable clearance of hepatic inclusions with respect to controls over the same time period. This study provides proof of principle that "mutation ameliorating" small molecules can block the aberrant polymerisation that underlies Z α1 -antitrypsin deficiency.
    Keywords:  emphysema; liver disease; protein misfolding; small molecule corrector; α1-antitrypsin deficiency
  62. J Exp Med. 2021 Mar 01. pii: e20200662. [Epub ahead of print]218(3):
      The hematopoietic system is highly sensitive to perturbations in the translational machinery, of which an emerging level of regulation lies in the epitranscriptomic modification of transfer RNAs (tRNAs). Here, we interrogate the role of tRNA anticodon modifications in hematopoiesis by using mouse models of conditional inactivation of Elp3, the catalytic subunit of Elongator that modifies wobble uridine in specific tRNAs. Loss of Elp3 causes bone marrow failure by inducing death in committing progenitors and compromises the grafting activity of hematopoietic stem cells. Mechanistically, Elp3 deficiency activates a p53-dependent checkpoint in what resembles a misguided amino acid deprivation response that is accompanied by Atf4 overactivation and increased protein synthesis. While deletion of p53 rescues hematopoiesis, loss of Elp3 prompts the development of p53-mutated leukemia/lymphoma, and inactivation of p53 and Elongator cooperatively promotes tumorigenesis. Specific tRNA-modifying enzymes thus condition differentiation and antitumor fate decisions in hematopoietic stem cells and progenitors.