bims-proteo Biomed News
on Proteostasis
Issue of 2021‒07‒18
forty-four papers selected by
Eric Chevet

  1. Cell Death Dis. 2021 Jul 13. 12(7): 697
      The tripartite motif-containing protein 21 (TRIM21) plays important roles in autophagy and innate immunity. Here, we found that HECT and RLD domain containing E3 ubiquitin protein ligase 5 (HERC5), as an interferon-stimulated gene 15 (ISG15) E3 ligase, catalyzes the ISGylation of TRIM21 at the Lys260 and Lys279 residues. Moreover, IFN-β also induces TRIM21 ISGylation at multiple lysine residues, thereby enhancing its E3 ligase activity for K63-linkage-specific ubiquitination and resulting in increased levels of TRIM21 and p62 K63-linked ubiquitination. The K63-linked ubiquitination of p62 at Lys7 prevents its self-oligomerization and targeting to the autophagosome. Taken together, our study suggests that the ISGylation of TRIM21 plays a vital role in regulating self-oligomerization and localization of p62 in the autophagy induced by IFN-β.
  2. RNA. 2021 Jul 08. pii: rna.078858.121. [Epub ahead of print]
      Stress granules (SGs) are membraneless organelles composed of mRNAs and RNA binding proteins which undergo assembly in response to stress-induced inactivation of translation initiation. In general, SG recruitment is limited to a subpopulation of a given mRNA species and RNA-seq analyses of purified SGs revealed that signal sequence-encoding (i.e. endoplasmic reticulum (ER)-targeted) transcripts are significantly under-represented, consistent with prior reports that ER localization can protect mRNAs from SG recruitment. Using translational profiling, cell fractionation, and single molecule mRNA imaging, we examined SG biogenesis following activation of the unfolded protein response (UPR) by 1,4-dithiothreitol (DTT) and report that gene-specific subsets of cytosolic and ER-targeted mRNAs can be recruited into SGs. Furthermore, we demonstrate that SGs form in close proximity to or directly associated with the ER membrane. ER-associated SG assembly was also observed during arsenite stress, suggesting broad roles for the ER in SG biogenesis. Recruitment of a given mRNA into SGs required stress-induced translational repression, though translational inhibition was not solely predictive of an mRNA's propensity for SG recruitment. SG formation was prevented by the transcriptional inhibitors actinomycin D or triptolide, suggesting a functional link between gene transcriptional state and SG biogenesis. Collectively these data demonstrate that ER-targeted and cytosolic mRNAs can be recruited into ER-associated SGs and this recruitment is sensitive to transcriptional inhibition. We propose that newly transcribed mRNAs exported under conditions of suppressed translation initiation are primary SG substrates, with the ER serving as the central subcellular site of SG formation.
    Keywords:  endoplasmic reticulum; mRNA; stress granule; translational regulation; unfolded protein response
  3. Int J Biol Macromol. 2021 Jul 06. pii: S0141-8130(21)01466-5. [Epub ahead of print]186 237-243
      The glucose-regulated protein GRP94 is a molecular chaperone that is located in the endoplasmic reticulum (ER). Here, we demonstrate in pull down experiments an interaction between GRP94 and sucrase-isomaltase (SI), the most prominent disaccharidase of the small intestine. GRP94 binds to SI exclusively via its mannose-rich form compatible with an interaction occurring in the ER. We have also examined the interaction GRP94 to a panel of SI mutants that are associated with congenital sucrase-isomaltase deficiency (CSID). These mutants exhibited more efficient binding to GRP94 than wild type SI underlining a specific role of this chaperone in the quality control in the ER. In view of the hypoxic milieu of the intestine, we probed the interaction of GRP94 to SI and its mutants in cell culture under hypoxic conditions and observed a substantial increase in the binding of GRP94 to the SI mutants. The interaction of GRP94 to the major carbohydrate digesting enzyme and regulating its folding as well as retaining SI mutants in the ER points to a potential role of GRP94 in maintenance of intestinal homeostasis by chaperoning and stabilizing SI.
    Keywords:  ER stress; GRP94; Hypoxia; Intestinal enzymes; Molecular chaperones; Protein quality control; Sucrase-isomaltase
  4. Adv Exp Med Biol. 2021 ;1208 17-42
      Autophagosome formation is a regulated membrane remodeling process, which involves the generation of autophagosomal membrane precursors (vesicles), the assembly of the autophagosomal membrane precursors to form the phagophore, and phagophore elongation to complete the autophagosome. The sources of the autophagosomal membrane precursors are endomembrane compartments, such as the endoplasmic reticulum (ER), the ER-Golgi intermediate compartment (ERGIC), ER-exit sites (ERES), and endosomes. In response to stress, these structures are remodeled, to generate the early autophagosomal membrane precursors. The phagophore assembly site (PAS), which mainly localizes on the ER, harbors the site for autophagosomal membrane assembly, elongation, and completion. ATG proteins, membrane remodeling factors, and autophagic membranes follow a precise choreography to complete the overall process. In this chapter, we briefly discuss our current knowledge on the membrane origins of the autophagosome, as well as autophagosomal precursor generation, assembly, and expansion.
    Keywords:  ATG proteins; Autophagosome; Endoplasmic reticulum; Endosome; Membrane remodeling; Microfilament; Mitochondria; Phagophore; Plasma membrane
  5. J Cell Biol. 2021 Aug 02. pii: e202105004. [Epub ahead of print]220(8):
      Tail-anchored (TA) proteins fulfill diverse cellular functions within different organellar membranes. Their characteristic C-terminal transmembrane segment renders TA proteins inherently prone to aggregation and necessitates their posttranslational targeting. The guided entry of TA proteins (GET in yeast)/transmembrane recognition complex (TRC in humans) pathway represents a major route for TA proteins to the endoplasmic reticulum (ER). Here, we review important new insights into the capture of nascent TA proteins at the ribosome by the GET pathway pretargeting complex and the mechanism of their delivery into the ER membrane by the GET receptor insertase. Interestingly, several alternative routes by which TA proteins can be targeted to the ER have emerged, raising intriguing questions about how selectivity is achieved during TA protein capture. Furthermore, mistargeting of TA proteins is a fundamental cellular problem, and we discuss the recently discovered quality control machineries in the ER and outer mitochondrial membrane for displacing mislocalized TA proteins.
  6. J Cell Sci. 2021 Jul 14. pii: jcs.258819. [Epub ahead of print]
      Lipid droplets (LDs) are globular intracellular structures dedicated to the storage of neutral lipids. They are closely associated with the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) and are delineated by a monolayer of phospholipids that is continuous with the cytoplasmic leaflet of the ER membrane. LDs contain a specific set of proteins, but how these proteins are targeted to the LD surface is not fully understood. Here we devised a yeast mating-based microscopic readout to monitor the transfer of LD proteins upon zygote formation. The results of this analysis indicate that ER fusion between mating partners is required for transfer of LD proteins and that this transfer is continuous, bidirectional and affects most LDs simultaneously. These observations suggest that LDs do not fuse upon mating of yeast cells, but that they form a network that is interconnected through the ER membrane. Consistent with this, ER-localized LD proteins rapidly move onto LDs of a mating partner and this protein transfer is affected by seipin, a protein important for proper LD biogenesis and the functional connection of LDs with the ER membrane.
    Keywords:  Endoplasmic reticulum; Lipid droplets; Mating; Membrane fusion; Protein targeting; Saccharomyces cerevisiae; Seipin; Steryl esters; Triacylglycerols
  7. J Mol Biol. 2021 Jul 14. pii: S0022-2836(21)00386-7. [Epub ahead of print] 167157
      The protein quality control (PQC) system maintains protein homeostasis by counteracting the accumulation of misfolded protein conformers. Substrate degradation and refolding activities executed by ATP-dependent proteases and chaperones constitute major strategies of the proteostasis network. Small heat shock proteins represent ATP-independent chaperones that bind to misfolded proteins, preventing their uncontrolled aggregation. sHsps share the conserved α-crystallin domain (ACD) and gain functional specificity through variable and largely disordered N- and C-terminal extensions (NTE, CTE). They form large, polydisperse oligomers through multiple, weak interactions between NTE/CTEs and ACD dimers. Sequence variations of sHsps and the large variability of sHsp oligomers enable sHsps to fulfill diverse tasks in the PQC network. sHsp oligomers represent inactive yet dynamic resting states that are rapidly deoligomerized and activated upon stress conditions, releasing substrate binding sites in NTEs and ACDs Bound substrates are usually isolated in large sHsp/substrate complexes. This sequestration activity of sHsps represents a third strategy of the proteostasis network. Substrate sequestration reduces the burden for other PQC components during immediate and persistent stress conditions. Sequestered substrates can be released and directed towards refolding pathways by ATP-dependent Hsp70/Hsp100 chaperones or sorted for degradation by autophagic pathways. sHsps can also maintain the dynamic state of phase-separated stress granules (SGs), which store mRNA and translation factors, by reducing the accumulation of misfolded proteins inside SGs and preventing unfolding of SG components. This ensures SG disassembly and regain of translational capacity during recovery periods.
    Keywords:  chaperone; protein aggregation; proteostasis; small heat shock protein; stress granule
  8. Hepatology. 2021 Jul 17.
      BACKGROUND AND AIMS: Nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) is the most prevalent chronic liver disease worldwide, but no effective pharmacological therapeutics are available for clinical use. Nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH) is the more severe stage of NAFLD. During this progress, dysregulation of endoplasmic reticulum (ER) related pathways and proteins is one of the predominant hallmarks. Here, we aimed to reveal the role of RNF5, an ER-localized E3 ubiquitin-protein ligase, in NASH and to explore its underlying mechanism.APPROACH AND RESULTS: We firstly inspected the expression level of RNF5 and found that RNF5 was markedly decreased in livers with NASH in multispecies including human. We then introduced adenoviruses for Rnf5 overexpression or knockdown into primary mouse hepatocytes, and found that palmitic acid/oleic acid (PAOA)-induced lipid accumulation and inflammation in hepatocytes were markedly attenuated by Rnf5 overexpression but exacerbated by Rnf5 gene silencing. Hepatocyte-specific Rnf5 knockout significantly exacerbated hepatic steatosis, inflammatory response and fibrosis in mice challenged with diet-induced NASH. Mechanistically, we identified HRD1 as a novel binding partner of RNF5 by systematic interactomics analysis. RNF5 directly bound to HRD1 and promoted its lysine 48 (K48)- and K33-linked ubiquitination and subsequent proteasomal degradation. Furthermore, Hrd1 overexpression significantly exacerbated PAOA-induced lipid accumulation and inflammation, and shRNA-mediated Hrd1 knockdown exerted the opposite effects. Notably, Hrd1 knockdown significantly disminished PAOA-induced lipid deposition and upregulation of related genes resulted from Rnf5 ablation in hepatocytes.
    CONCLUSIONS: These data indicate that RNF5 inhibits NASH progression by targeted degradation HRD1 for ubiquitin- mediated proteasomal pathway. Targeting the RNF5-HRD1 axis may provide new insights in the pathogenesis of NASH, and pave the way for developing novel strategies for NASH prevention and treatment.
    Keywords:  HRD1; NASH; RNF5; endoplasmic reticulum; ubiquitination
  9. Adv Exp Med Biol. 2021 ;1322 339-357
      Posttranslational modifications of targeted substrates alter their cellular fate. Ubiquitin is a highly conserved and ubiquitous covalent modifier protein that tags substrates with a single molecule or with a polyubiquitin chain. Monoubiquitination affects trafficking and signaling patterns of modified proteins. In contrast, polyubiquitination, particularly K48-linked polyubiquitination, targets the protein for degradation by the Ubiquitin-Proteasome System (UPS) resulting in a committed fate through irreversible inactivation of substrate. Given the diversity of cellular functions impacted by ubiquitination, it is no surprise that the wily pathogenic viruses have co-opted the UPS in myriad ways to ensure their survival. In this review, I describe viral exploitation of nondegradative ubiquitin signaling pathways to effect entry, replication, and egress. Additionally, viruses also harness the UPS to degrade antiviral cellular host factors. Finally, I describe how we can exploit the same proteolytic machinery to enable PROTACs (Proteolysis-Targeting Chimeras) to degrade essential viral proteins. Successful implementation of this modality will add to the arsenal of emerging antiviral therapies.
    Keywords:  Antiviral therapeutics; Antivirals; Degraders; PROTACs; Proteasome; Ubiquitin; Ubiquitin ligases
  10. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2021 Jul 20. pii: e2024562118. [Epub ahead of print]118(29):
      Cell survival in response to stress is determined by the coordination of various signaling pathways. The kinase p38α is activated by many stresses, but the intensity and duration of the signal depends on the stimuli. How different p38α-activation dynamics may impact cell life/death decisions is unclear. Here, we show that the p38α-signaling output in response to stress is modulated by the expression levels of the downstream kinase MK2. We demonstrate that p38α forms a complex with MK2 in nonstimulated mammalian cells. Upon pathway activation, p38α phosphorylates MK2, the complex dissociates, and MK2 is degraded. Interestingly, transient p38α activation allows MK2 reexpression, reassembly of the p38α-MK2 complex, and cell survival. In contrast, sustained p38α activation induced by severe stress interferes with p38α-MK2 interaction, resulting in irreversible MK2 loss and cell death. MK2 degradation is mediated by the E3 ubiquitin ligase MDM2, and we identify four lysine residues in MK2 that are directly ubiquitinated by MDM2. Expression of an MK2 mutant that cannot be ubiquitinated by MDM2 enhances the survival of stressed cells. Our results indicate that MK2 reexpression and binding to p38α is critical for cell viability in response to stress and illustrate how particular p38α-activation patterns induced by different signals shape the stress-induced cell fate.
    Keywords:  MDM2; MK2; cell survival; p38; stress
  11. Bioorg Med Chem Lett. 2021 Jul 08. pii: S0960-894X(21)00470-4. [Epub ahead of print] 128243
      A growing number of diseases are linked to the misfolding of integral membrane proteins, and many of these proteins are targeted for ubiquitin-proteasome-dependent degradation. One such substrate is a mutant form of the Cystic Fibrosis Transmembrane Conductance Regulator (F508del-CFTR). Protein folding "correctors" that repair the F508del-CFTR folding defect have entered the clinic, but they are unlikely to protect the entire protein from degradation. To increase the pool of F508del-CFTR protein that is available for correction by existing treatments, we determined a structure-activity relationship to improve the efficacy and reduce the toxicity of an inhibitor of the E1 ubiquitin activating enzyme that facilitates F508del-CFTR maturation. A resulting lead compound lacked measurable toxicity and improved the ability of an FDA-approved corrector to augment F508del-CFTR folding, transport the protein to the plasma membrane, and maintain its activity. These data support a proof-of-concept that modest inhibition of substrate ubiquitination improves the activity of small molecule correctors to treat CF and potentially other protein conformational disorders.
  12. J Cell Biol. 2021 Sep 06. pii: e202007177. [Epub ahead of print]220(9):
      Epithelial cells lining mucosal surfaces distinctively express the inflammatory bowel disease risk gene INAVA. We previously found that INAVA has dual and competing functions: one at lateral membranes where it affects mucosal barrier function and the other in the cytosol where INAVA enhances IL-1β signal transduction and protein ubiquitination and forms puncta. We now find that IL-1β-induced INAVA puncta are biomolecular condensates that rapidly assemble and physiologically resolve. The condensates contain ubiquitin and the E3 ligase βTrCP2, and their formation correlates with amplified ubiquitination, suggesting function in regulation of cellular proteostasis. Accordingly, a small-molecule screen identified ROS inducers, proteasome inhibitors, and inhibitors of the protein folding chaperone HSP90 as potent agonists for INAVA condensate formation. Notably, inhibitors of the p38α and mTOR pathways enhanced resolution of the condensates, and inhibitors of the Rho-ROCK pathway induced INAVA's competing function by recruiting INAVA to newly assembled intercellular junctions in cells where none existed before.
  13. Mol Cell. 2021 Jul 05. pii: S1097-2765(21)00497-4. [Epub ahead of print]
      Cells communicate with their environment via surface proteins and secreted factors. Unconventional protein secretion (UPS) is an evolutionarily conserved process, via which distinct cargo proteins are secreted upon stress. Most UPS types depend upon the Golgi-associated GRASP55 protein. However, its regulation and biological role remain poorly understood. Here, we show that the mechanistic target of rapamycin complex 1 (mTORC1) directly phosphorylates GRASP55 to maintain its Golgi localization, thus revealing a physiological role for mTORC1 at this organelle. Stimuli that inhibit mTORC1 cause GRASP55 dephosphorylation and relocalization to UPS compartments. Through multiple, unbiased, proteomic analyses, we identify numerous cargoes that follow this unconventional secretory route to reshape the cellular secretome and surfactome. Using MMP2 secretion as a proxy for UPS, we provide important insights on its regulation and physiological role. Collectively, our findings reveal the mTORC1-GRASP55 signaling hub as the integration point in stress signaling upstream of UPS and as a key coordinator of the cellular adaptation to stress.
    Keywords:  ECM; GORASP2; GRASP55; Golgi; MMP2; Rapamycin; Tuberous Sclerosis Complex (TSC); cellular stress response; mTORC1; unconventional protein secretion (UPS)
  14. Cell Death Differ. 2021 Jul 13.
      As a core kinase of antiviral immunity, the activity and stability of TANK-binding kinase 1 (TBK1) is tightly controlled by multiple post-translational modifications. Although it has been demonstrated that TBK1 stability can be regulated by ubiquitin-dependent proteasome pathway, it is unclear whether another important protein degradation pathway, autophagosome pathway, can specifically affect TBK1 degradation by cargo receptors. Here we report that E3 ubiquitin ligase NEDD4 functions as a negative regulator of type I interferon (IFN) signaling by targeting TBK1 for degradation at the late stage of viral infection, to prevent the host from excessive immune response. Mechanically NEDD4 catalyzes the K27-linked poly-ubiquitination of TBK1 at K344, which serves as a recognition signal for cargo receptor NDP52-mediated selective autophagic degradation. Taken together, our study reveals the regulatory role of NEDD4 in balancing TBK1-centered type I IFN activation and provides insights into the crosstalk between selective autophagy and antiviral signaling.
  15. Dev Biol. 2021 Jul 12. pii: S0012-1606(21)00171-8. [Epub ahead of print]
      Ire1 is an endoplasmic reticulum (ER) transmembrane RNase that cleaves substrate mRNAs to help cells adapt to ER stress. Because there are cell types with physiological ER stress, loss of Ire1 results in metabolic and developmental defects in diverse organisms. In Drosophila, Ire1 mutants show developmental defects at early larval stages and in pupal eye photoreceptor differentiation. These Drosophila studies relied on a single Ire1 loss of function allele with a Piggybac insertion in the coding sequence. Here, we report that an Ire1 allele with a specific impairment in the RNase domain, H890A, unmasks previously unrecognized Ire1 phenotypes in Drosophila eye pigmentation. Specifically, we found that the adult eye pigmentation is altered, and the pigment granules are compromised in Ire1H890A homozygous mosaic eyes. Furthermore, the Ire1H890A mutant eyes had dramatically reduced Rhodopsin-1 protein levels. Drosophila eye pigment granules are most notably associated with late endosome/lysosomal defects. Our results indicate that the loss of Ire1, which would impair ER homeostasis, also results in altered adult eye pigmentation.
    Keywords:  , Pigment granules; Drosophila; Ire1; RNase; Rhodopsin-1
  16. Microbiol Immunol. 2021 Jul 14.
      Human cytomegalovirus (HCMV) is a globally ubiquitous pathogen and causes congenital infection as well as opportunistic infection in immunocompromised patients. The HCMV UL42 gene encodes a membrane protein that regulates the function of Nedd4 family ubiquitin E3 ligases through its PPxY motif. As HCMV envelope glycoprotein B (gB) also has a PPxY motif at its C-terminal cytoplasmic domain, we examined whether there was any relationship between UL42 protein with gB. Among the Nedd4 family proteins, Nedd4, Nedd4L, and Itch induced the degradation of gB in transiently expressing cells. The degradation of gB by Nedd4 was inhibited by proteasome inhibitor MG132, lysosome inhibitor chloroquine, and the co-expression of UL42 proteins. Among those Nedd4 family proteins, Itch was re-localized by the co-expression of gB to the perinuclear region of the cytoplasm. A co-immunoprecipitation assay demonstrated an interaction between gB and Itch through its PPxY motif. The 150 kDa gB precursor was aberrantly ubiquitinated, and the total amount of gB was quickly decreased in the absence of UL42. Our results indicate that UL42 prevent the degradation of gB by the inhibition of Nedd4 family proteins. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
    Keywords:  HCMV UL42; Human cytomegalovirus; Nedd4 family; glycoprotein B; ubiquitination
  17. J Physiol. 2021 Jul 16.
      Endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress promotes placental dysmorphogenesis and is associated with poor pregnancy outcomes. We show that unfolded protein response signalling pathways located in the ER drive differentiation of mouse trophoblast stem cells into trophoblast subtypes involved in development of the placental labyrinth zone and trophoblast invasion. In a mouse model of chronic ER stress (Eif2s1tm1RjK ), higher ER stress in homozygous blastocysts is accompanied by reduced trophectoderm cell number, developmental delay, and is associated with an increased incidence of early pregnancy loss. Administration of the chemical chaperone, tauroursodeoxycholic acid, to Eif2s1tm1RjK heterozygous females during pregnancy alleviated ER stress in the mutant placenta, restored normal trophoblast populations and reduced the frequency of early pregnancy loss. Our results suggest that alleviation of intrauterine ER stress could provide a potential therapeutic target to improve pregnancy outcome in women with pre-gestational metabolic or gynaecologic conditions. ABSTRACT: Women with pre-gestational health conditions (e.g., obesity, diabetes) or gynaecological problems (e.g., endometriosis) are at increased risk of adverse pregnancy outcomes including miscarriage, preeclampsia and fetal growth restriction. Increasing evidence suggests that unfavourable intrauterine conditions leading to poor implantation and/or defective placentation are a possible causative factor. The endoplasmic reticulum (ER) unfolded protein response (UPRER ) signalling pathways are a convergence point of various physiological stress stimuli that can be triggered by an unfavourable intrauterine environment. Therefore, we explored the impact of ER stress on mouse trophoblast differentiation in vitro, mouse blastocyst formation and early placenta development in the Eif2s1tm1RjK mutant mouse model of chronic ER stress. Chemically-manipulated ER stress or activation of UPRER pathways in a mouse trophoblast stem cell line promoted lineage-specific differentiation. Co-treatment with specific UPRER pathway inhibitors rescued this effect. While the inner cell mass was unaffected, the trophectoderm of homozygous Eif2s1tm1RjK blastocysts exhibited ER stress associated with a reduced cell number. Furthermore, one-third of Eif2s1tmRjK homozygous blastocysts exhibited severe developmental defects. We have previously reported a reduced trophoblast population and premature trophoblast differentiation in Eif2s1tm1RjK homozygous placentas at mid-gestation. Here, we demonstrate that treatment of Eif2s1+/tm1RjK heterozygous pregnant females with the chemical chaperone tauroursodeoxycholic acid alleviated ER stress, restored the trophoblast population, and reduced the frequency of embryonic lethality. Our data suggest that therapeutic targeting of ER stress may improve pregnancy outcome in women with pre-gestational metabolic or gynaecologic conditions. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
    Keywords:  Endoplasmic reticulum stress; Placental development; Pregnancy complications; Trophoblast differentiation
  18. Nucleic Acids Res. 2021 Jul 13. pii: gkab589. [Epub ahead of print]
      In the cell, stalled ribosomes are rescued through ribosome-associated protein quality-control (RQC) pathways. After splitting of the stalled ribosome, a C-terminal polyalanine 'tail' is added to the unfinished polypeptide attached to the tRNA on the 50S ribosomal subunit. In Bacillus subtilis, polyalanine tailing is catalyzed by the NEMF family protein RqcH, in cooperation with RqcP. However, the mechanistic details of this process remain unclear. Here we demonstrate that RqcH is responsible for tRNAAla selection during RQC elongation, whereas RqcP lacks any tRNA specificity. The ribosomal protein uL11 is crucial for RqcH, but not RqcP, recruitment to the 50S subunit, and B. subtilis lacking uL11 are RQC-deficient. Through mutational mapping, we identify critical residues within RqcH and RqcP that are important for interaction with the P-site tRNA and/or the 50S subunit. Additionally, we have reconstituted polyalanine-tailing in vitro and can demonstrate that RqcH and RqcP are necessary and sufficient for processivity in a minimal system. Moreover, the in vitro reconstituted system recapitulates our in vivo findings by reproducing the importance of conserved residues of RqcH and RqcP for functionality. Collectively, our findings provide mechanistic insight into the role of RqcH and RqcP in the bacterial RQC pathway.
  19. Comput Biol Chem. 2021 Jun 24. pii: S1476-9271(21)00101-8. [Epub ahead of print]93 107534
      Proteins, under conditions of cellular stress, typically tend to unfold and form lethal aggregates leading to neurological diseases like Parkinson's and Alzheimer's. A clear understanding of the conditions that favor dis-aggregation and restore the cell to its healthy state after they have been stressed is therefore important in dealing with these diseases. The heat shock response (HSR) mechanism is a signaling network that deals with these undue protein aggregates and aids in the maintenance of homeostasis within a cell. This framework, on its own, is a mathematically well studied mechanism. However, not much is known about how the various intermediate mis-folded protein states of the aggregation process interact with some of the key components of the HSR pathway such as the Heat Shock Protein (HSP), the Heat Shock Transcription Factor (HSF) and the HSP-HSF complex. In this article, using kinetic parameters from the literature, we propose and analyze two mathematical models for HSR that also include explicit reactions for the formation of protein aggregates. Deterministic analysis and stochastic simulations of these models show that the folded proteins and the misfolded aggregates exhibit bistability in a certain region of the parameter space. Further, the models also highlight the role of HSF and the HSF-HSP complex in reducing the time lag of response to stress and in re-folding all the mis-folded proteins back to their native state. These models, therefore, call attention to the significance of studying related pathways such as the HSR and the protein aggregation and re-folding process in conjunction with each other.
    Keywords:  Heat shock response; Mathematical model; Protein aggregation; Sensitivity analysis; Stochastic simulations
  20. Autophagy. 2021 Jul 12. 1-3
      ATG16L1 is a critical mediator of macroautophagy/autophagy required for LC3 lipidation and autophagosome formation. However, ATG16L1 has a C-terminal domain including 7 WD40-type repetitions (WD40 domain, WDD) that is unnecessary for the conventional autophagic pathway. Instead, this domain mediates unconventional activities where LC3 is lipidated in atypical subcellular localizations unrelated to canonical double-membrane autophagosomes. The WDD provides a docking surface for molecules including a specific amino acid motif, thus engaging the LC3 lipidation capabilities of ATG16L1 in single-membrane structures. The physiological implications of such atypical activities are poorly characterized. In a recent report we described the improvement of the WDD-binding motif and the identification of transmembrane molecules that harbor this element in their intracellular region. One of them, IL10RB (interleukin 10 receptor subunit beta), binds the WDD after IL10 activation to facilitate endocytosis, early trafficking and signaling of IL10-IL10R complexes without influencing their degradation rate. These results reveal a novel unconventional role of ATG16L1 in cytokine signaling that does not entail a degradative purpose, thus contributing to catalog the physiological roles played by unconventional activities of the autophagic machinery.
    Keywords:  ATG16L1; IL10R endocytosis and signaling; WD40 domain; cytokine receptor trafficking; cytokine signaling; endocytosis; unconventional autophagy
  21. Nat Commun. 2021 07 12. 12(1): 4258
      The maintenance of constant karyoplasmic ratios suggests that nuclear size has physiological significance. Nuclear size anomalies have been linked to malignant transformation, although the mechanism remains unclear. By expressing dominant-negative TER94 mutants in Drosophila photoreceptors, here we show disruption of VCP (valosin-containing protein, human TER94 ortholog), a ubiquitin-dependent segregase, causes progressive nuclear size increase. Loss of VCP function leads to accumulations of MDC1 (mediator of DNA damage checkpoint protein 1), connecting DNA damage or associated responses to enlarged nuclei. TER94 can interact with MDC1 and decreases MDC1 levels, suggesting that MDC1 is a VCP substrate. Our evidence indicates that MDC1 accumulation stabilizes p53A, leading to TER94K2A-associated nuclear size increase. Together with a previous report that p53A disrupts autophagic flux, we propose that the stabilization of p53A in TER94K2A-expressing cells likely hinders the removal of nuclear content, resulting in aberrant nuclear size increase.
  22. JIMD Rep. 2021 Jul;60(1): 42-55
      MAN1B1-CDG is a multisystem disorder caused by mutations in MAN1B1, encoding the endoplasmic reticulum mannosyl-oligosaccharide alpha-1,2-mannnosidase. A defect leads to dysfunction within the degradation of misfolded glycoproteins. We present two additional patients with MAN1B1-CDG and a resulting defect in endoplasmic reticulum-associated protein degradation. One patient (P2) is carrying the previously undescribed p.E663K mutation. A therapeutic trial in patient 1 (P1) using disulfiram with the rationale to generate an attenuation of translation and thus a balanced, restored ER glycoprotein synthesis failed. No improvement of the transferrin glycosylation profile was seen.
    Keywords:  MAN1B1‐CDG; disulfiram
  23. mBio. 2021 Jul 13. e0033421
      Bacterial and eukaryotic hibernation factors prevent translation by physically blocking the decoding center of ribosomes, a phenomenon called ribosome hibernation that often occurs in response to nutrient deprivation. The human pathogen Staphylococcus aureus lacking the sole hibernation factor HPF undergoes massive ribosome degradation via an unknown pathway. Using genetic and biochemical approaches, we find that inactivating the 3'-to-5' exonuclease RNase R suppresses ribosome degradation in the Δhpf mutant. In vitro cell-free degradation assays confirm that 30S and 70S ribosomes isolated from the Δhpf mutant are extremely susceptible to RNase R, in stark contrast to nucleolytic resistance of the HPF-bound 70S and 100S complexes isolated from the wild type. In the absence of HPF, specific S. aureus 16S rRNA helices are sensitive to nucleolytic cleavage. These RNase hot spots are distinct from that found in the Escherichia coli ribosomes. S. aureus RNase R is associated with ribosomes, but unlike the E. coli counterpart, it is not regulated by general stressors and acetylation. The results not only highlight key differences between the evolutionarily conserved RNase R homologs but also provide direct evidence that HPF preserves ribosome integrity beyond its role in translational avoidance, thereby poising the hibernating ribosomes for rapid resumption of translation. IMPORTANCE Ribosome hibernation is pivotal for the rapid recovery of translation after quiescence in both bacteria and eukaryotes. Ribosome hibernation factors sterically occlude the entry of mRNA and tRNA and are thought to primarily maintain ribosomes in a translation-repressive state, thereby providing a pool of readily recyclable 70S or 80S complexes upon dissociation of the hibernation factors. Ribosomes in Staphylococcus aureus cells lacking the sole hibernation factor HPF are extremely unstable. Here, we show that HPF binding inhibits ribosome degradation by the evolutionarily conserved exoribonuclease RNase R. The data not only uncover a direct protective role of HPF in ribosome stability but also reinforce the versatility of RNase R in RNA processing, decay, and ribosome quality control.
    Keywords:  RNase; Staphylococcus aureus; hibernation; ribosome; stress response
  24. Cell Rep. 2021 Jul 13. pii: S2211-1247(21)00726-9. [Epub ahead of print]36(2): 109350
      Co-translational protein targeting to membranes by the signal recognition particle (SRP) is a universally conserved pathway from bacteria to humans. In mammals, SRP and its receptor (SR) have many additional RNA features and protein components compared to the bacterial system, which were recently shown to play regulatory roles. Due to its complexity, the mammalian SRP targeting process is mechanistically not well understood. In particular, it is not clear how SRP recognizes translating ribosomes with exposed signal sequences and how the GTPase activity of SRP and SR is regulated. Here, we present electron cryo-microscopy structures of SRP and SRP·SR in complex with the translating ribosome. The structures reveal the specific molecular interactions between SRP and the emerging signal sequence and the elements that regulate GTPase activity of SRP·SR. Our results suggest the molecular mechanism of how eukaryote-specific elements regulate the early and late stages of SRP-dependent protein targeting.
    Keywords:  GTPases; co-translational protein targeting; cryoelectron microscopy; endoplasmic reticulum; ribosome nascent chain complex; signal peptide; signal recognition particle; transmembrane domain
  25. Cell Rep. 2021 Jul 13. pii: S2211-1247(21)00774-9. [Epub ahead of print]36(2): 109376
      eIF5-mimic protein (5MP) is a translational regulatory protein that binds the small ribosomal subunit and modulates its activity. 5MP is proposed to reprogram non-AUG translation rates for oncogenes in cancer, but its role in controlling non-AUG initiated synthesis of deleterious repeat-peptide products, such as FMRpolyG observed in fragile-X-associated tremor ataxia syndrome (FXTAS), is unknown. Here, we show that 5MP can suppress both general and repeat-associated non-AUG (RAN) translation by a common mechanism in a manner dependent on its interaction with eIF3. Essentially, 5MP displaces eIF5 through the eIF3c subunit within the preinitiation complex (PIC), thereby increasing the accuracy of initiation. In Drosophila, 5MP/Kra represses neuronal toxicity and enhances the lifespan in an FXTAS disease model. These results implicate 5MP in protecting cells from unwanted byproducts of non-AUG translation in neurodegeneration.
    Keywords:  FXTAS; RAN translation; cancer; eIF5-mimic protein; non-AUG start codon; ribosome; translation initiation
  26. Cell Mol Life Sci. 2021 Jul 10.
      A precondition for efficient proinsulin export from the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) is that proinsulin meets ER quality control folding requirements, including formation of the Cys(B19)-Cys(A20) "interchain" disulfide bond, facilitating formation of the Cys(B7)-Cys(A7) bridge. The third proinsulin disulfide, Cys(A6)-Cys(A11), is not required for anterograde trafficking, i.e., a "lose-A6/A11" mutant [Cys(A6), Cys(A11) both converted to Ser] is well secreted. Nevertheless, an unpaired Cys(A11) can participate in disulfide mispairings, causing ER retention of proinsulin. Among the many missense mutations causing the syndrome of Mutant INS gene-induced Diabetes of Youth (MIDY), all seem to exhibit perturbed proinsulin disulfide bond formation. Here, we have examined a series of seven MIDY mutants [including G(B8)V, Y(B26)C, L(A16)P, H(B5)D, V(B18)A, R(Cpep + 2)C, E(A4)K], six of which are essentially completely blocked in export from the ER in pancreatic β-cells. Three of these mutants, however, must disrupt the Cys(A6)-Cys(A11) pairing to expose a critical unpaired cysteine thiol perturbation of proinsulin folding and ER export, because when introduced into the proinsulin lose-A6/A11 background, these mutants exhibit native-like disulfide bonding and improved trafficking. This maneuver also ameliorates dominant-negative blockade of export of co-expressed wild-type proinsulin. A growing molecular understanding of proinsulin misfolding may permit allele-specific pharmacological targeting for some MIDY mutants.
    Keywords:  Diabetes; Disulfide bonds; Endoplasmic reticulum; Insulin; Protein trafficking
  27. EMBO J. 2021 Jul 16. e108053
      The eukaryotic replisome is rapidly disassembled during DNA replication termination. In metazoa, the cullin-RING ubiquitin ligase CUL-2LRR-1 drives ubiquitylation of the CMG helicase, leading to replisome disassembly by the p97/CDC-48 "unfoldase". Here, we combine in vitro reconstitution with in vivo studies in Caenorhabditis elegans embryos, to show that the replisome-associated TIMELESS-TIPIN complex is required for CUL-2LRR-1 recruitment and efficient CMG helicase ubiquitylation. Aided by TIMELESS-TIPIN, CUL-2LRR-1 directs a suite of ubiquitylation enzymes to ubiquitylate the MCM-7 subunit of CMG. Subsequently, the UBXN-3 adaptor protein directly stimulates the disassembly of ubiquitylated CMG by CDC-48_UFD-1_NPL-4. We show that UBXN-3 is important in vivo for replisome disassembly in the absence of TIMELESS-TIPIN. Correspondingly, co-depletion of UBXN-3 and TIMELESS causes profound synthetic lethality. Since the human orthologue of UBXN-3, FAF1, is a candidate tumour suppressor, these findings suggest that manipulation of CMG disassembly might be applicable to future strategies for treating human cancer.
    Keywords:  CDC-48; CMG helicase; CUL-2LRR-1; DNA replication termination; TIMELESS-TIPIN; UBXN-3
  28. Autophagy. 2021 Jul 12. 1-3
      Atg8-family protein lipidation is the most commonly used marker for monitoring autophagy. During macroautophagy, Atg8-family proteins are specifically conjugated to phosphatidylethanolamine (PE) in forming, double-membrane autophagosomes. A distinct, non-canonical autophagy pathway also operates, characterized by the Conjugation of ATG8s to endolysosomal Single Membranes (CASM). In our new study, we show that CASM is associated with the alternative conjugation of Atg8-family proteins to phosphatidylserine (PS), and PE, in response to various cellular stimuli. We also discover differences in the regulation of conjugation to PE and PS by ATG4s, and altered dynamics between the two species. The identification of alternative Atg8-family protein PS lipidation opens up exciting new questions on the roles, regulation and biology of Atg8-family proteins during non-canonical autophagy.
    Keywords:  ATG4; ATG8; LC3-associated phagocytosis; endolysosome; lipidation; non-canonical autophagy; phosphatidylserine
  29. Protein Sci. 2021 Jul 17.
      Small heat shock proteins (sHSPs) are known to exhibit in vitro chaperone activity by suppressing the aggregation of misfolded proteins. The 12-kDa sHSPs (Hsp12s) subfamily members from Caenorhabditis elegans, including Hsp12.2, Hsp12.3 and Hsp12.6, however, are devoid of such chaperone activity, and their in vivo functions are poorly understood. Here we verified that Hsp12.1, similar to its homologs Hsp12.2, Hsp12.3 and Hsp12.6, hardly exhibited any chaperone activity. Strikingly, we demonstrated that these Hsp12s seem to play crucial physiological roles in C. elegans, for suppressing dauer formation and promoting both longevity and reproduction. A unique sHSP gene from Filarial nematode worm Brugia malayi was identified such that it encodes two products, one as a full-length Hsp12.6 protein and the other one having an N-terminal arm of normal length but lacks the C-terminal extension. This gene may represent an intermediate form in evolution from a common sHSP to a Hsp12. Together, our study offers insights on what biological functions the chaperone-defective sHSPs may exhibit and also implicates an evolutionary scenario for the unique Hsp12s subfamily. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
    Keywords:  Chaperone; Hsp12s; dauer; evolution; longevity; reproduction; small heat shock protein; thermal resistance
  30. Cell Rep. 2021 Jul 13. pii: S2211-1247(21)00759-2. [Epub ahead of print]36(2): 109361
      Mouse embryonic stem cell (ESC) pluripotency is tightly regulated by a complex network composed of extrinsic and intrinsic factors that allow proper organismal development. O-linked β-N-acetylglucosamine (O-GlcNAc) is the sole glycosylation mark found on cytoplasmic and nuclear proteins and plays a pivotal role in regulating fundamental cellular processes; however, its function in ESC pluripotency is still largely unexplored. Here, we identify O-GlcNAcylation of proteasome activator subunit 3 (Psme3) protein as a node of the ESC pluripotency network. Mechanistically, O-GlcNAc modification of serine 111 (S111) of Psme3 promotes degradation of Ddx6, which is essential for processing body (P-body) assembly, resulting in the maintenance of ESC pluripotent state. Conversely, loss of Psme3 S111 O-GlcNAcylation stabilizes Ddx6 and increases P-body levels, culminating in spontaneous exit of ESC from the pluripotent state. Our findings establish O-GlcNAcylation at S111 of Psme3 as a switch that regulates ESC pluripotency via control of P-body homeostasis.
    Keywords:  Ddx6; O-GlcNAc; P-bodies; PA28γ; Psme3; embryonic stem cells; glycosylation; phase separation; pluripotency; proteasome
  31. Nat Struct Mol Biol. 2021 Jul;28(7): 614-625
      p97 processes ubiquitinated substrates and plays a central role in cellular protein homeostasis. Here, we report a series of cryo-EM structures of the substrate-engaged human p97 complex with resolutions ranging from 2.9 to 3.8 Å that captured 'power-stroke'-like motions of both the D1 and D2 ATPase rings of p97. A key feature of these structures is the critical conformational changes of the intersubunit signaling (ISS) motifs, which tighten the binding of nucleotides and neighboring subunits and contribute to the spiral staircase conformation of the D1 and D2 rings. In addition, we determined the cryo-EM structure of human p97 in complex with NMS-873, a potent p97 inhibitor, at a resolution of 2.4 Å. The structures showed that NMS-873 binds at a cryptic groove in the D2 domain and interacts with the ISS motif, preventing its conformational change and thus blocking substrate translocation allosterically.
  32. Biochim Biophys Acta Mol Cell Res. 2021 Jul 07. pii: S0167-4889(21)00150-6. [Epub ahead of print]1868(10): 119096
      Heat shock protein 90 (HSP90) is a highly conserved molecular chaperone that plays a pivotal role in folding, activating and assembling a variety of client proteins. In addition, HSP90 has recently emerged as a crucial regulator of vesicular transport of cellular proteins. In our previous study, we revealed Rab11b negatively regulated osteoclastogenesis by promoting the lysosomal proteolysis of c-fms and RANK surface receptors via the axis of early endosome-late endosome-lysosomes. In this study, using an in vitro model of osteoclasts differentiated from murine macrophage-like RAW-D cells, we revealed that Rab11b interacted with both HSP90 isoforms, HSP90 alpha (HSP90α) and HSP90 beta (HSP90β), suggesting that Rab11b is an HSP90 client. Using at specific blocker for HSP90 ATPase activity, 17-allylamino-demethoxygeldanamycin (17-AAG), we found that the HSP90 ATPase domain is indispensable for maintaining the interaction between HSP90 and Rab11b in osteoclasts. Nonetheless, its ATPase activity is not required for regulating the turnover of endogenous Rab11b. Interestingly, blocking the interaction between HSP90 and Rab11b by either HSP90-targeting small interfering RNA (siHSP90) or 17-AAG abrogated the inhibitory effects of Rab11b on osteoclastogenesis by suppressing the Rab11b-mediated transport of c-fms and RANK surface receptors to lysosomes via the axis of early endosome-late endosome-lysosomes, alleviating the Rab11b-mediated proteolysis of these surface receptors in osteoclasts. Based on our observations, we propose a HSP90/Rab11b-mediated regulatory mechanism for osteoclastogenesis by directly modulating the c-fms and RANK surface receptors in osteoclasts, thereby contributing to the maintenance of bone homeostasis.
    Keywords:  Heat shock protein 90 (HSP90); Osteoclasts; Rab11b; Vesicular transport
  33. Oncogene. 2021 Jul 15.
      Large tumour suppressor (LATS) 1/2, the core kinases of Hippo signalling, are critical for maintaining tissue homeostasis. Here, we investigate the role of SUMOylation in the regulation of LATS activation. High cell density induces the expression of components of the SUMOylation machinery and enhances the SUMOylation and activation of Lats1 but not Lats2, whereas genetic deletion of the SUMOylation E2 ligase, Ubc9, abolishes this Lats1 activation. Moreover, SUMOylation occurs at the K830 (mouse K829) residue to activate LATS1 and depends on the PIAS1/2 E3 ligase. Whereas the K830 deSUMOylation mutation of LATS1 found in the human metastatic prostate cancers eliminates the kinase activity by attenuating the formation of the phospho-MOB1/phospho-LATS1 complex. As a result, the LATS1(K830R) transgene phenocopies Yap transgene to cause the oversized livers in mice, whereas Lats1(K829R) knock-in phenocopies the deletion of Lats1 in causing the reproductive and endocrine defects and ovary tumours in mice. Thus, SUMOylation-mediated LATS1 activation is an integral component of Hippo signalling in the regulation of tissues homeostasis.
  34. iScience. 2021 Jul 23. 24(7): 102707
      Lysosome functions mainly rely on their ability to either degrade substrates or release them into the extracellular space. Lysosomal storage disorders (LSDs) are commonly characterized by a chronic lysosomal accumulation of different substrates, thereby causing lysosomal dysfunctions and secretion defects. However, the early effects of substrate accumulation on lysosomal homeostasis have not been analyzed so far. Here, we describe how the acute accumulation of a single substrate determines a rapid centripetal redistribution of the lysosomes, triggering their expansion and reducing their secretion, by limiting the motility of these organelles toward the plasma membrane. Moreover, we provide evidence that such defects could be explained by a trapping mechanism exerted by the extensive contacts between the enlarged lysosomes and the highly intertwined membrane structures of the endoplasmic reticulum which might represent a crucial biological cue ultimately leading to the clinically relevant secondary defects observed in the LSD experimental models and patients.
    Keywords:  Biochemistry; Biological sciences; Cell biology; Molecular biology
  35. Dev Cell. 2021 Jul 03. pii: S1534-5807(21)00520-7. [Epub ahead of print]
      In ribosomopathies, perturbed expression of ribosome components leads to tissue-specific phenotypes. What accounts for such tissue-selective manifestations as a result of mutations in the ribosome, a ubiquitous cellular machine, has remained a mystery. Combining mouse genetics and in vivo ribosome profiling, we observe limb-patterning phenotypes in ribosomal protein (RP) haploinsufficient embryos, and we uncover selective translational changes of transcripts that controlling limb development. Surprisingly, both loss of p53, which is activated by RP haploinsufficiency, and augmented protein synthesis rescue these phenotypes. These findings are explained by the finding that p53 functions as a master regulator of protein synthesis, at least in part, through transcriptional activation of 4E-BP1. 4E-BP1, a key translational regulator, in turn, facilitates selective changes in the translatome downstream of p53, and this thereby explains how RP haploinsufficiency may elicit specificity to gene expression. These results provide an integrative model to help understand how in vivo tissue-specific phenotypes emerge in ribosomopathies.
    Keywords:  4E-BP1; limb development; nucleolar stress; p53; ribosomal protein haploinsufficiency; ribosome profiling; ribosomopathy; translational control
  36. PLoS Biol. 2021 Jul;19(7): e3001302
      Defects in mitochondrial function activate compensatory responses in the cell. Mitochondrial stress that is caused by unfolded proteins inside the organelle induces a transcriptional response (termed the "mitochondrial unfolded protein response" [UPRmt]) that is mediated by activating transcription factor associated with stress 1 (ATFS-1). The UPRmt increases mitochondrial protein quality control. Mitochondrial dysfunction frequently causes defects in the import of proteins, resulting in the accumulation of mitochondrial proteins outside the organelle. In yeast, cells respond to mistargeted mitochondrial proteins by increasing activity of the proteasome in the cytosol (termed the "unfolded protein response activated by mistargeting of proteins" [UPRam]). The presence and relevance of this response in higher eukaryotes is unclear. Here, we demonstrate that defects in mitochondrial protein import in Caenorhabditis elegans lead to proteasome activation and life span extension. Both proteasome activation and life span prolongation partially depend on ATFS-1, despite its lack of influence on proteasomal gene transcription. Importantly, life span prolongation depends on the fully assembled proteasome. Our data provide a link between mitochondrial dysfunction and proteasomal activity and demonstrate its direct relevance to mechanisms that promote longevity.
  37. EMBO J. 2021 Jul 14. e105658
      The Ebola virus VP30 protein interacts with the viral nucleoprotein and with host protein RBBP6 via PPxPxY motifs that adopt non-canonical orientations, as compared to other proline-rich motifs. An affinity tag-purification mass spectrometry approach identified additional PPxPxY-containing host proteins hnRNP L, hnRNPUL1 and PEG10, as VP30 interactors. hnRNP L and PEG10, like RBBP6, inhibit viral RNA synthesis and EBOV infection, whereas hnRNPUL1 enhances. RBBP6 and hnRNP L modulate VP30 phosphorylation, increase viral transcription, and exert additive effects on viral RNA synthesis. PEG10 has more modest inhibitory effects on EBOV replication. hnRNPUL1 positively affects viral RNA synthesis but in a VP30-independent manner. Binding studies demonstrate variable capacity of the PPxPxY motifs from these proteins to bind VP30, identify PxPPPPxY as an optimal binding motif, and identify the fifth proline and the tyrosine as most critical for interaction. Competition binding and hydrogen-deuterium exchange by mass spectrometry studies demonstrate that each protein binds a similar interface on VP30. VP30 therefore presents a novel proline recognition domain that is targeted by multiple host proteins to modulate viral transcription.
    Keywords:  Ebola virus; RNA viruses; VP30; viral replication; virus-host interactions
  38. Nat Cell Biol. 2021 Jul 12.
      The integral membrane protein ATG9A plays a key role in autophagy. It displays a broad intracellular distribution and is present in numerous compartments, including the plasma membrane (PM). The reasons for the distribution of ATG9A to the PM and its role at the PM are not understood. Here, we show that ATG9A organizes, in concert with IQGAP1, components of the ESCRT system and uncover cooperation between ATG9A, IQGAP1 and ESCRTs in protection from PM damage. ESCRTs and ATG9A phenocopied each other in protection against PM injury. ATG9A knockouts sensitized the PM to permeabilization by a broad spectrum of microbial and endogenous agents, including gasdermin, MLKL and the MLKL-like action of coronavirus ORF3a. Thus, ATG9A engages IQGAP1 and the ESCRT system to maintain PM integrity.
  39. Nucleic Acids Res. 2021 Jul 13. pii: gkab604. [Epub ahead of print]
      Translation of eukaryotic mRNAs begins with binding of their m7G cap to eIF4E, followed by recruitment of other translation initiation factor proteins. We describe capCLIP, a novel method to comprehensively capture and quantify the eIF4E (eukaryotic initiation factor 4E) 'cap-ome' and apply it to examine the biological consequences of eIF4E-cap binding in distinct cellular contexts. First, we use capCLIP to identify the eIF4E cap-omes in human cells with/without the mTORC1 (mechanistic target of rapamycin, complex 1) inhibitor rapamycin, there being an emerging consensus that rapamycin inhibits translation of TOP (terminal oligopyrimidine) mRNAs by displacing eIF4E from their caps. capCLIP reveals that the representation of TOP mRNAs in the cap-ome is indeed systematically reduced by rapamycin, thus validating our new methodology. capCLIP also refines the requirements for a functional TOP sequence. Second, we apply capCLIP to probe the consequences of phosphorylation of eIF4E. We show eIF4E phosphorylation reduces overall eIF4E-mRNA association and, strikingly, causes preferential dissociation of mRNAs with short 5'-UTRs. capCLIP is a valuable new tool to probe the function of eIF4E and of other cap-binding proteins such as eIF4E2/eIF4E3.
  40. Nat Commun. 2021 07 09. 12(1): 4237
      Brain network hubs are both highly connected and highly inter-connected, forming a critical communication backbone for coherent neural dynamics. The mechanisms driving this organization are poorly understood. Using diffusion-weighted magnetic resonance imaging in twins, we identify a major role for genes, showing that they preferentially influence connectivity strength between network hubs of the human connectome. Using transcriptomic atlas data, we show that connected hubs demonstrate tight coupling of transcriptional activity related to metabolic and cytoarchitectonic similarity. Finally, comparing over thirteen generative models of network growth, we show that purely stochastic processes cannot explain the precise wiring patterns of hubs, and that model performance can be improved by incorporating genetic constraints. Our findings indicate that genes play a strong and preferential role in shaping the functionally valuable, metabolically costly connections between connectome hubs.
  41. Nat Commun. 2021 07 13. 12(1): 4284
      The translocase of the outer mitochondrial membrane TOM constitutes the organellar entry gate for nearly all precursor proteins synthesized on cytosolic ribosomes. Thus, TOM presents the ideal target to adjust the mitochondrial proteome upon changing cellular demands. Here, we identify that the import receptor TOM70 is targeted by the kinase DYRK1A and that this modification plays a critical role in the activation of the carrier import pathway. Phosphorylation of TOM70Ser91 by DYRK1A stimulates interaction of TOM70 with the core TOM translocase. This enables transfer of receptor-bound precursors to the translocation pore and initiates their import. Consequently, loss of TOM70Ser91 phosphorylation results in a strong decrease in import capacity of metabolite carriers. Inhibition of DYRK1A impairs mitochondrial structure and function and elicits a protective transcriptional response to maintain a functional import machinery. The DYRK1A-TOM70 axis will enable insights into disease mechanisms caused by dysfunctional DYRK1A, including autism spectrum disorder, microcephaly and Down syndrome.
  42. Elife. 2021 Jul 16. pii: e65417. [Epub ahead of print]10
      Vesicular neurotransmitter transporters (VNTs) mediate the selective uptake and enrichment of small molecule neurotransmitters into synaptic vesicles (SVs) and are therefore a major determinant of the synaptic output of specific neurons. To identify novel VNTs expressed on SVs (thus identifying new neurotransmitters and/or neuromodulators), we conducted localization profiling of 361 solute carrier (SLC) transporters tagging with a fluorescent protein in neurons, which revealed 40 possible candidates through comparison with a known SV marker. We parallelly performed proteomics analysis of immunoisolated SVs and identified 7 transporters in overlap. Ultrastructural analysis confirmed one of the transporters, SLC35D3, localized to SVs. Finally, by combining metabolite profiling with a radiolabeled substrate transport assay, we identified UDP-glucose as the principal substrate for SLC35D3. These results provide new insights into the functional role of SLC transporters in neurotransmission and improve our understanding of the molecular diversity of chemical transmitters.
    Keywords:  human; mouse; neuroscience
  43. ACS Infect Dis. 2021 Jul 14.
      Targeted protein degradation aims to hijack endogenous protein quality control systems to achieve direct knockdown of protein targets. This exciting technology utilizes event-based pharmacology to produce therapeutic outcomes, a feature that distinguishes it from classical occupancy-based inhibitor agents. Early degrader candidates display resilience to mutations while possessing potent nanomolar activity and high target specificity. Paired with the rapid advancement of our knowledge in the factors driving targeted degradation, the expansion of this style of therapeutic agent to a range of disease indications is eagerly awaited. In particular, the area of antibiotic discovery is sorely lacking in novel approaches, with the Antimicrobial Resistance (AMR) crisis looming as the next potential global health calamity. Here, the current advances in targeted protein degradation are highlighted, and potential approaches for designing novel antimicrobial protein degraders are proposed, ranging from adaptations of current strategies to completely novel approaches to targeted protein degradation.
    Keywords:  LYTAC; PROTAC; antibiotics; antimicrobial crisis; bacterial resistance; targeted protein degradation
  44. Am J Cancer Res. 2021 ;11(6): 3227-3239
      Activating transcription factor 4 (ATF4) is a crucial mediator of the integrated stress response and a negative regulator of RET tyrosine kinase receptor in medullary thyroid carcinoma (MTC). However, the impact of genomic abnormalities in the ATF4 locus on MTC pathogenesis and response to tyrosine kinase inhibitor therapy remains unknown. Here, we evaluated ATF4 copy number variation and protein levels, with overall survival and response to TKIs in a clinical cohort of fifty-nine sporadic primary MTC. We assessed the somatic RETM918T mutation by sequencing, ATF4 copy number by a real-time polymerase chain reaction, and ATF4 protein levels using immunohistochemistry. This MTC cohort comprised 45 (76%) stage IV patients with a median follow-up of 100 months (interquartile range: 58-134 months). Somatic RETM918T was present in 23/57 (40%) tumors. Mono-allelic (36%; 21/59) and bi-allelic (5%; 3/59) loss of ATF4 was identified and was associated with low ATF4 protein expression (0-20%). Kaplan-Meier curves highlight low ATF4 protein or ATF4 loss alone had a significant negative impact on median survival compared to high protein expression (P<0.001) or diploid ATF4 (P=0.011), respectively. The combination of somatic RETM918T and low ATF4 protein levels further decreased overall survival. Both allelic loss and protein reduction were associated with worse overall survival (HR=3.79, 4.06 +RETM918T , and HR=10.64, 11.66 +RETM918T , respectively). Additionally, all 4 of the 11 patients treated with TKIs with a progressive disease by RECIST had low tumor ATF4 protein, with the two partial responder's tumors having high ATF4 protein. These findings suggest that ATF4 may predict response to tyrosine kinase inhibitors, serve as a prognostic marker for personalized care, and a therapeutic target in MTC.
    Keywords:  ATF4; RET; loss of heterozygosity; medullary thyroid carcinoma; tyrosine kinase inhibitors