bims-proteo Biomed News
on Proteostasis
Issue of 2021‒10‒17
twenty-nine papers selected by
Eric Chevet

  1. Methods Mol Biol. 2022 ;2387 163-181
      Mycobacterium ulcerans, the causative agent of Buruli ulcer disease, is unique among human pathogens in its capacity to produce mycolactone, a diffusible macrolide with immunosuppressive and cytotoxic properties. Recent studies have shown that mycolactone operates by inhibiting the host membrane translocation complex (Sec61), with an unprecedented potency compared to previously identified Sec61 blockers. Mycolactone binding to the pore-forming subunit of Sec61 inhibits its capacity to transport nascent secretory and membrane proteins into the endoplasmic reticulum, leading to their cytosolic degradation by the ubiquitin:proteasome system. In T lymphocytes, Sec61 blockade by mycolactone manifests as a sharp decrease in the cell's ability to express homing receptors and release cytokines following activation. Sustained exposure of human cells to mycolactone typically generates proteotoxic stress responses in their cytosol and endoplasmic reticulum (ER), ultimately inducing apoptosis. Here we describe cell-free systems for studying Sec61-mediated protein translocation that allow the impact of mycolactone on the biogenesis of secretory and membrane proteins to be probed. We also describe biological assays of mycolactone-driven inhibition of Sec61 providing rapid and sensitive means to quantitatively assess the presence of the toxin in biological samples.
    Keywords:  Co-translational translocation; Endoplasmic reticulum (ER); Enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA); Flow cytometry; In vitro transcription and translation; Microsomes; Sec61 translocon
  2. Cell Mol Life Sci. 2021 Oct 12.
      Accumulation of misfolded proteins in ER activates the unfolded protein response (UPR), a multifunctional signaling pathway that is important for cell survival. The UPR is regulated by three ER transmembrane sensors, one of which is inositol-requiring protein 1 (IRE1). IRE1 activates a transcription factor, X-box-binding protein 1 (XBP1), by removing a 26-base intron from XBP1 mRNA that generates spliced XBP1 mRNA (XBP1s). To search for XBP1 transcriptional targets, we utilized an XBP1s-inducible human cell line to limit XBP1 expression in a controlled manner. We also verified the identified XBP1-dependent genes with specific silencing of this transcription factor during pharmacological ER stress induction with both an N-linked glycosylation inhibitor (tunicamycin) and a non-competitive inhibitor of the sarco/endoplasmic reticulum Ca2+ ATPase (SERCA) (thapsigargin). We then compared those results to the XBP1s-induced cell line without pharmacological ER stress induction. Using next-generation sequencing followed by bioinformatic analysis of XBP1-binding motifs, we defined an XBP1 regulatory network and identified XBP1 as a repressor of PUMA (a proapoptotic gene) and IRE1 mRNA expression during the UPR. Our results indicate impairing IRE1 activity during ER stress conditions accelerates cell death in ER-stressed cells, whereas elevating XBP1 expression during ER stress using an inducible cell line correlated with a clear prosurvival effect and reduced PUMA protein expression. Although further studies will be required to test the underlying molecular mechanisms involved in the relationship between these genes with XBP1, these studies identify a novel repressive role of XBP1 during the UPR.
    Keywords:  BBC3; ER stress; ERN1; UPR; XBP1s; XBP1u
  3. Autophagy. 2021 Oct 13. 1-3
      Formation of the double-membrane autophagosome requires membrane reorganization of the endomembrane system to generate membrane precursors. The ER-Golgi trafficking system has been shown to provide membranes for phagophore growth. Nonetheless, how the components of the ER-Golgi system are redirected toward autophagosome biogenesis remains unclear. Here, we identify a new type of membrane contact formed between the ER-Golgi intermediate compartment (ERGIC) and the ER-exit sites (ERES) under macroautophagy/autophagy-induction conditions. The ERGIC-ERES contact is established by the TMED9-PREB/SEC12 interaction and regulates the biogenesis of the ERGIC-COPII vesicles, which we found previously act as a membrane template for LC3 lipidation and autophagosome formation.
    Keywords:  Autophagosome; COPII; ERES; ERGIC; SEC12; TMED9; autophagy
  4. Nat Commun. 2021 Oct 13. 12(1): 5991
      The reticulon-3 (RTN3)-driven targeting complex promotes clearance of misfolded prohormones from the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) for lysosomal destruction by ER-phagy. Because RTN3 resides in the cytosolic leaflet of the ER bilayer, the mechanism of selecting misfolded prohormones as ER-phagy cargo on the luminal side of the ER membrane remains unknown. Here we identify the ER transmembrane protein PGRMC1 as an RTN3-binding partner. Via its luminal domain, PGRMC1 captures misfolded prohormones, targeting them for RTN3-dependent ER-phagy. PGRMC1 selects cargos that are smaller than the large size of other reported ER-phagy substrates. Cargos for PGRMC1 include mutant proinsulins that block secretion of wildtype proinsulin through dominant-negative interactions within the ER, causing insulin-deficiency. Chemical perturbation of PGRMC1 partially restores WT insulin storage by preventing ER-phagic degradation of WT and mutant proinsulin. Thus, PGRMC1 acts as a size-selective cargo receptor during RTN3-dependent ER-phagy, and is a potential therapeutic target for diabetes.
  5. STAR Protoc. 2021 Dec 17. 2(4): 100868
      The endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress is defined by the accumulation of unfolded proteins at the ER and perturbation at the ER membrane, known as lipid bilayer stress (LBS). In turn, ER stress triggers the unfolded protein response (UPR) to restore ER homeostasis. Here, we provide a modified protocol based on the synthetic genetic array analysis in Saccharomyces cerevisiae to identify genetic perturbations that induce the UPR by LBS. This method is adaptable to other canonical stress pathways. For complete details on the use and execution of this protocol, please refer to Ho et al. (2020), Jonikas et al. (2009) and Baryshnikova et al. (2010).
    Keywords:  Cell Membrane; Cell-based Assays; Flow Cytometry/Mass Cytometry; Gene Expression; Genetics; High Throughput Screening; Model Organisms; Signal Transduction
  6. J Biol Chem. 2021 Oct 11. pii: S0021-9258(21)01105-4. [Epub ahead of print] 101299
      The Sigma-1 receptor (S1R) is a transmembrane protein with important roles in cellular homeostasis in normal physiology and in disease. Especially in neurodegenerative diseases, S1R activation has been shown to provide neuroprotection by modulating calcium signaling, mitochondrial function and reducing endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress. S1R missense mutations are one of the causes of the neurodegenerative Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis and distal hereditary motor neuronopathies. Although the S1R has been studied intensively, basic aspects remain controversial, such as S1R topology and whether it reaches the plasma membrane. To address these questions, we have undertaken several approaches. C-terminal tagging with a small biotin-acceptor peptide and BirA biotinylation in cells suggested a type II membrane orientation (cytosolic N-terminus). However, N-terminal tagging gave an equal probability for both possible orientations. This might explain conflicting reports in the literature, as tags may affect the protein topology. Therefore, we studied untagged S1R using a protease protection assay and a glycosylation mapping approach, introducing N-glycosylation sites. Both methods provided unambiguous results showing that the S1R is a type II membrane protein with a short cytosolic N-terminal tail. Assessments of glycan processing, surface fluorescence-activated cell sorting, and cell surface biotinylation indicated ER-retention, with insignificant exit to the plasma membrane, in the absence or presence of S1R agonists or of ER stress. These findings may have important implications for S1R-based therapeutic approaches.
    Keywords:  ER stress; Sigma-1 receptor; cell surface; endoplasmic reticulum; membrane topology; neurodegeneration
  7. J Biochem. 2021 Oct 14. pii: mvab108. [Epub ahead of print]
      Complexes of p24 proteins act as cargo receptors for the transport of COPII vesicles from the endoplasmic reticulum. The major cargos of p24 complexes are hydrophilic proteins tethered to the endoplasmic reticulum membrane via a covalently attached glycosylphosphatidylinositol (GPI) or fatty acid. Each p24 complex is known to contain members from all four p24 subfamilies (p24α, p24β, p24γ, and p24δ). However, it remains unclear how the cargo specificities of p24 complexes are influenced by member stoichiometry. Here, we report the subunit compositions of mammalian p24 complexes involved in the transport of GPI-anchored proteins and Wnt1. We show that at least one p24α is required for the formation of p24 complexes, and that a p24 complex consisting of p24α2, p24β1, p24γ2, and p24δ1 is required for the efficient transport of GPI-anchored proteins. On the other hand, a p24 complex containing p24α2, p24α3, p24β1, p24γ, and p24δ1 is involved in the transport of Wnt1. Further, interactions between p24α2 and p24α3 are critical for Wnt1 transport. Thus, p24α and p24γ subfamily members are important for cargo selectivity. Lastly, our data fit with an octamer, rather than a tetramer, model of p24 complexes, where each complex consists of two proteins from each p24 subfamily.
    Keywords:  GPI-anchored proteins; Wnt1; p24 complex; subunit composition; transport
  8. Cancer Lett. 2021 Oct 09. pii: S0304-3835(21)00514-0. [Epub ahead of print]
      Glucose-related protein 78 (GRP78) is a chaperone protein localized primarily in the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) lumen, where it helps in proper protein folding by targeting misfolded proteins and facilitating protein assembly. In stressed cells, GRP78 is translocated to the cell surface (csGRP78) where it binds to various ligands and triggers different intracellular pathways. Thus, csGRP78 expression is associated with cancer, involved in the maintenance and progression of the disease. Extracellular exposition of csGRP78 leads to the production of autoantibodies as observed in patients with prostate or ovarian cancer, in which the ability to target csGRP78 affects the tumor development. Present on the surface of cancer cells and not normal cells in vivo, csGRP78 represents an interesting target for therapeutic antibody strategies. Here we give an overview of the csGRP78 function in the cell and its role in oncogenesis, thereby providing insight into the clinical value of GRP78 monoclonal antibodies for cancer prognosis and treatment.
    Keywords:  Cell-surface GRP78; GRP78 antibodies; Prognosis; Therapy; Tumor development
  9. Life Sci Alliance. 2021 Dec;pii: e202101247. [Epub ahead of print]4(12):
      The intracellular bacterial pathogen Legionella pneumophila (L.p.) secretes ∼330 effector proteins into the host cell to sculpt an ER-derived replicative niche. We previously reported five L.p. effectors that inhibit IRE1, a key sensor of the homeostatic unfolded protein response (UPR) pathway. In this study, we discovered a subset of L.p. toxins that selectively activate the UPR sensor ATF6, resulting in its cleavage, nuclear translocation, and target gene transcription. In a deviation from the conventional model, this L.p-dependent activation of ATF6 does not require its transport to the Golgi or its cleavage by the S1P/S2P proteases. We believe that our findings highlight the unique regulatory control that L.p exerts upon the three UPR sensors and expand the repertoire of bacterial proteins that selectively perturb host homeostatic pathways.
  10. Genome Biol. 2021 Oct 15. 22(1): 292
      BACKGROUND: The endoplasmic reticulum (ER) is a membranous organelle that maintains proteostasis and cellular homeostasis, controlling the fine balance between health and disease. Dysregulation of the ER stress response has been implicated in intestinal inflammation associated with inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), a chronic condition characterized by changes to the mucosa and alteration of the gut microbiota. While the microbiota and microbially derived metabolites have also been implicated in ER stress, examples of this connection remain limited to a few observations from pathogenic bacteria. Furthermore, the mechanisms underlying the effects of bacterial metabolites on ER stress signaling have not been well established.RESULTS: Utilizing an XBP1s-GFP knock-in reporter colorectal epithelial cell line, we screened 399 microbiome-related metabolites for ER stress pathway modulation. We find both ER stress response inducers (acylated dipeptide aldehydes and bisindole methane derivatives) and suppressors (soraphen A) and characterize their activities on ER stress gene transcription and translation. We further demonstrate that these molecules modulate the ER stress pathway through protease inhibition or lipid metabolism interference.
    CONCLUSIONS: Our study identified novel links between classes of gut microbe-derived metabolites and the ER stress response, suggesting the potential for these metabolites to contribute to gut ER homeostasis and providing insight into the molecular mechanisms by which gut microbes impact intestinal epithelial cell homeostasis.
    Keywords:  ER stress; Intestinal epithelial homeostasis; Microbial metabolites; Unfolded protein response
  11. Cell Rep. 2021 10 12. pii: S2211-1247(21)01266-3. [Epub ahead of print]37(2): 109806
      Tactical disruption of protein synthesis is an attractive therapeutic strategy, with the first-in-class eIF4A-targeting compound zotatifin in clinical evaluation for cancer and COVID-19. The full cellular impact and mechanisms of these potent molecules are undefined at a proteomic level. Here, we report mass spectrometry analysis of translational reprogramming by rocaglates, cap-dependent initiation disruptors that include zotatifin. We find effects to be far more complex than simple "translational inhibition" as currently defined. Translatome analysis by TMT-pSILAC (tandem mass tag-pulse stable isotope labeling with amino acids in cell culture mass spectrometry) reveals myriad upregulated proteins that drive hitherto unrecognized cytotoxic mechanisms, including GEF-H1-mediated anti-survival RHOA/JNK activation. Surprisingly, these responses are not replicated by eIF4A silencing, indicating a broader translational adaptation than currently understood. Translation machinery analysis by MATRIX (mass spectrometry analysis of active translation factors using ribosome density fractionation and isotopic labeling experiments) identifies rocaglate-specific dependence on specific translation factors including eEF1ε1 that drive translatome remodeling. Our proteome-level interrogation reveals that the complete cellular response to these historical "translation inhibitors" is mediated by comprehensive translational landscape remodeling.
    Keywords:  DDX17; GEF-H1; JNK; RHOA; eEF1ε1; eIF4A; rocaglate; silvestrol; translation; zotatifin
  12. Trends Cell Biol. 2021 Oct 12. pii: S0962-8924(21)00198-7. [Epub ahead of print]
      The proteostasis network (PN) regulates protein synthesis, folding, and degradation and is critical for the health and function of all cells. The PN has been extensively studied in the context of aging and age-related diseases, and loss of proteostasis is regarded as a major contributor to many age-associated disorders. In contrast to somatic tissues, an important feature of germ cells is their ability to maintain a healthy proteome across generations. Accumulating evidence has now revealed multiple layers of PN regulation that support germ cell function, determine reproductive capacity during aging, and prioritize reproduction at the expense of somatic health. Here, we review recent insights into these different modes of regulation and their implications for reproductive and somatic aging.
    Keywords:  aging; oocyte; proteostasis; reproduction; stress response
  13. J Virol. 2021 Oct 13. JVI0169521
      The replication of coronaviruses, including severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus (SARS-CoV), Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) and the recently emerged severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), is closely associated with the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) of infected cells. The unfolded protein response (UPR), which is mediated by ER stress (ERS), is a typical outcome in coronavirus-infected cells and is closely associated with the characteristics of coronaviruses. However, the interaction between virus-induced ERS and coronavirus replication is poorly understood. Here, we demonstrated that infection with the betacoronavirus porcine hemagglutinating encephalomyelitis virus (PHEV) induced ERS and triggered all three branches of the UPR signaling pathway both in vitro and in vivo. In addition, ERS suppressed PHEV replication in mouse neuro-2a (N2a) cells primarily by activating the protein kinase R-like ER kinase (PERK)-eukaryotic initiation factor 2α (eIF2α) axis of the UPR. Moreover, another eIF2α phosphorylation kinase, IFN-induced double-stranded RNA-dependent protein kinase (PKR), was also activated and acted cooperatively with PERK to decrease PHEV replication. Furthermore, we demonstrated that the PERK/PKR-eIF2α pathways negatively regulated PHEV replication by attenuating global protein translation. Phosphorylated eIF2α also promoted the formation of stress granule (SG), which in turn repressed PHEV replication. In summary, our study presents a vital aspect of the host innate response to invading pathogens and reveals attractive host targets (e.g., PERK, PKR and eIF2α) for antiviral drugs. IMPORTANCE Coronavirus diseases are caused by different coronaviruses of importance in humans and animals, and specific treatments are extremely limited. ERS, which can activate the UPR to modulate viral replication and the host innate response, is a frequent occurrence in coronavirus-infected cells. PHEV, a neurotropic β-coronavirus, causes nerve cell damage, which accounts for the high mortality rates in suckling piglets. However, it remains incompletely understood whether the highly developed ER in nerve cells plays an antiviral role in ERS and how ERS regulates viral proliferation. In this study, we found that PHEV infection induced ERS and activated the UPR both in vitro and in vivo and that the activated PERK/PKR-eIF2α axis inhibited PHEV replication through attenuating global protein translation and promoting SG formation. A better understanding of coronavirus-induced ERS and UPR activation may reveal the pathogenic mechanism of coronavirus and facilitate the development of new treatment strategies for these diseases.
  14. Traffic. 2021 Oct 14.
      Certain cell types must expand their exocytic pathway to guarantee efficiency and fidelity of protein secretion. A spectacular case is offered by decidualizing human endometrial stromal cells (EnSCs). In the midluteal phase of the menstrual cycle, progesterone stimulation induces proliferating EnSCs to differentiate into professional secretors releasing proteins essential for efficient blastocyst implantation. Here we describe the architectural rearrangements of the secretory pathway of a human endometrial stromal cell line (T-HESC). As in primary cells, decidualization entails proliferation arrest and the coordinated expansion of the entire secretory pathway without detectable activation of UPR pathways. Decidualization proceeds also in the absence of ascorbic acid, an essential cofactor for collagen biogenesis, despite also the secretion of some proteins whose folding does not depend on vitamin C is impaired. However, even in these conditions, no overt UPR induction can be detected. Morphometric analyses reveal that the exocytic pathway does not increase relatively to the volume of the cell. Thus, differently from other cell types, abundant production is guaranteed by a coordinated increase of the cell size following arrest of proliferation.
    Keywords:  Golgi complex; decidualization; endoplasmic reticulum; exocytic pathway; progesterone; protein secretion
  15. Mol Cell. 2021 Oct 05. pii: S1097-2765(21)00775-9. [Epub ahead of print]
      Maternal stress can have long-lasting epigenetic effects on offspring. To examine how epigenetic changes are triggered by stress, we examined the effects of activating the universal stress-responsive heat shock transcription factor HSF-1 in the germline of Caenorhabditis elegans. We show that, when activated in germ cells, HSF-1 recruits MET-2, the putative histone 3 lysine 9 (H3K9) methyltransferase responsible for repressive H3K9me2 (H3K9 dimethyl) marks in chromatin, and negatively bookmarks the insulin receptor daf-2 and other HSF-1 target genes. Increased H3K9me2 at these genes persists in adult progeny and shifts their stress response strategy away from inducible chaperone expression as a mechanism to survive stress and instead rely on decreased insulin/insulin growth factor (IGF-1)-like signaling (IIS). Depending on the duration of maternal heat stress exposure, this epigenetic memory is inherited by the next generation. Thus, paradoxically, HSF-1 recruits the germline machinery normally responsible for erasing transcriptional memory but, instead, establishes a heritable epigenetic memory of prior stress exposure.
    Keywords:  C. elegans; H3K9 methyltransferase; HSF1; MET-2; daf-2; epigenetic; heat shock; stress; transcriptional memory; transgenerational
  16. Nat Commun. 2021 Oct 14. 12(1): 5999
      Molecular chaperones contribute to the maintenance of cellular protein homoeostasis through assisting de novo protein folding and preventing amyloid formation. Chaperones of the Hsp70 family can further disaggregate otherwise irreversible aggregate species such as α-synuclein fibrils, which accumulate in Parkinson's disease. However, the mechanisms and kinetics of this key functionality are only partially understood. Here, we combine microfluidic measurements with chemical kinetics to study α-synuclein disaggregation. We show that Hsc70 together with its co-chaperones DnaJB1 and Apg2 can completely reverse α-synuclein aggregation back to its soluble monomeric state. This reaction proceeds through first-order kinetics where monomer units are removed directly from the fibril ends with little contribution from intermediate fibril fragmentation steps. These findings extend our mechanistic understanding of the role of chaperones in the suppression of amyloid proliferation and in aggregate clearance, and inform on possibilities and limitations of this strategy in the development of therapeutics against synucleinopathies.
  17. PLoS One. 2021 ;16(10): e0258315
      The Nedd4 family contains several structurally related but functionally distinct HECT-type ubiquitin ligases. The members of the Nedd4 family are known to recognize substrates through their multiple WW domains, which recognize PY motifs (PPxY, LPxY) or phospho-threonine or phospho-serine residues. To better understand protein interactor recognition mechanisms across the Nedd4 family, we report the development and implementation of a python-based tool, PxYFinder, to identify PY motifs in the primary sequences of previously identified interactors of Nedd4 and related ligases. Using PxYFinder, we find that, on average, half of Nedd4 family interactions are likely PY-motif mediated. Further, we find that PPxY motifs are more prevalent than LPxY motifs and are more likely to occur in proline-rich regions and that PPxY regions are more disordered on average relative to LPxY-containing regions. Informed by consensus sequences for PY motifs across the Nedd4 interactome, we rationally designed a focused peptide library and employed a computational screen, revealing sequence- and biomolecular interaction-dependent determinants of WW-domain/PY-motif interactions. Cumulatively, our efforts provide a new bioinformatic tool and expand our understanding of sequence and structural factors that contribute to PY-motif mediated interactor recognition across the Nedd4 family.
  18. iScience. 2021 Oct 22. 24(10): 103168
      Integrin alpha 2 (ITGA2) promotes cancer metastasis through selective adhesion to ECM proteins; however, the specific contribution of integrin glycosylation remains uncertain. We provide evidence that ITGA2 is a highly glycosylated transmembrane protein expressed in ovarian cancer tissue and cell lines. In-depth glycoproteomics identified predominant N- and O-glycosylation sites harboring substantially divergent ITGA2 glycosylation profiles. Generated putative ITGA2 N-glycosite mutants halted collagen and laminin binding and cells lacking N-glycosylated ITGA2 were marginally adherent to collagen, likely associated with its enhanced proteasome degradation through poly-ubiquitination. Proteomic and enrichment pathway analysis revealed increased cellular apoptosis and collagen organization in non-glycosylated ITGA2 mutant cells. Moreover, we provide evidence that ITGA2-specific sialylation is involved in selective cell-ECM binding. These results highlight the importance of glycans in regulating ITGA2 stability and ligand binding capacity which in turn modulates downstream focal adhesion and promotes cell survival in a collagen environment.
    Keywords:  Cancer; Cell biology; Proteomics
  19. Autophagy. 2021 Oct 13. 1-6
      Nucleophagy, the selective subtype of autophagy that predominantly targets only a selected and (nonessential) portion of the nucleus, and rarely the nucleus in its entirety, for degradation, reinforces the paradigm that nucleophagy recycling is a meticulous and highly delicate process guarded by fail-safe mechanisms. Our goal in this commentary is to encourage autophagy researchers and other scientists to explore nucleophagy blind spots and gain advanced insights into the diverse roles of this process and its selective modality as they pertain to intranuclear quality control and cellular homeostasis. Identifying and deciphering nucleophagic signaling, regulation, molecular mechanism(s) and its mediators, cargo composition and nuclear membrane dynamics under numerous physiological and/or pathological settings will provide important advances in our understanding of this critical type of organelle-selective autophagy.Abbreviations: INM, inner nuclear membrane; LN, late nucleophagy; mRNA, messenger RNA; NE, nuclear envelope; NL, nuclear lamina; NPC(s), nuclear pore complex(es); NVJ(s), nucleus-vacuole junction(s); ONM, outer nuclear membrane; PMN, piecemeal microautophagy of the nucleus; PND, programmed nuclear death; PNuD, programmed nuclear destruction; rDNA/rRNA, ribosomal DNA/RNA.
    Keywords:  Cargo; degradation; homeostasis; macronucleophagy; membrane; micronucleophagy; mode; nucleophagy; nucleus; vacuole
  20. Nucleic Acids Res. 2021 Oct 14. pii: gkab908. [Epub ahead of print]
      The eukaryotic initiation factor 3 (eIF3) complex is involved in every step of translation initiation, but there is limited understanding of its molecular functions. Here, we present a single particle electron cryomicroscopy (cryo-EM) reconstruction of yeast 48S ribosomal preinitiation complex (PIC) in an open conformation conducive to scanning, with core subunit eIF3b bound on the 40S interface near the decoding center in contact with the ternary complex eIF2·GTP·initiator tRNA. eIF3b is relocated together with eIF3i from their solvent interface locations observed in other PIC structures, with eIF3i lacking 40S contacts. Re-processing of micrographs of our previous 48S PIC in a closed state also suggests relocation of the entire eIF3b-3i-3g-3a-Cter module during the course of initiation. Genetic analysis indicates that high fidelity initiation depends on eIF3b interactions at the 40S subunit interface that promote the closed PIC conformation, or facilitate the relocation of eIF3b/eIF3i to the solvent interface, on start codon selection.
  21. Cell Rep. 2021 Oct 12. pii: S2211-1247(21)01283-3. [Epub ahead of print]37(2): 109819
      The AAA+ ATPase VCP regulates the extraction of SUMO and ubiquitin-modified DNA replication factors from chromatin. We have previously described that active DNA synthesis is associated with a SUMO-high/ubiquitin-low environment governed by the deubiquitylase USP7. Here, we unveil a functional cooperation between USP7 and VCP in DNA replication, which is conserved from Caenorhabditis elegans to mammals. The role of VCP in chromatin is defined by its cofactor FAF1, which facilitates the extraction of SUMOylated and ubiquitylated proteins that accumulate after the block of DNA replication in the absence of USP7. The inactivation of USP7 and FAF1 is synthetically lethal both in C. elegans and mammalian cells. In addition, USP7 and VCP inhibitors display synergistic toxicity supporting a functional link between deubiquitylation and extraction of chromatin-bound proteins. Our results suggest that USP7 and VCPFAF1 facilitate DNA replication by controlling the balance of SUMO/Ubiquitin-modified DNA replication factors on chromatin.
    Keywords:  CDC-48; DNA replication; DUB; FAF1; MATH-33; SUMO; UBXN-3; USP7; VCP; ubiquitin
  22. Nat Commun. 2021 Oct 12. 12(1): 5939
      Ubiquitin (Ub) and Ub-like proteins (Ubls) such as NEDD8 are best known for their function as covalent modifiers of other proteins but they are also themselves subject to post-translational modifications including phosphorylation. While functions of phosphorylated Ub (pUb) have been characterized, the consequences of Ubl phosphorylation remain unclear. Here we report that NEDD8 can be phosphorylated at S65 - the same site as Ub - and that S65 phosphorylation affects the structural dynamics of NEDD8 and Ub in a similar manner. While both pUb and phosphorylated NEDD8 (pNEDD8) can allosterically activate the Ub ligase Parkin, they have different protein interactomes that in turn are distinct from those of unmodified Ub and NEDD8. Among the preferential pNEDD8 interactors are HSP70 family members and we show that pNEDD8 stimulates HSP70 ATPase activity more pronouncedly than unmodified NEDD8. Our findings highlight the general importance of Ub/NEDD8 phosphorylation and support the notion that the function of pUb/pNEDD8 does not require their covalent attachment to other proteins.
  23. Oncogene. 2021 Oct 14.
      Aberrant glucose metabolism and elevated O-linked β-N-acetylglucosamine modification (O-GlcNAcylation) are hallmarks of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). Loss of phosphoenolpyruvate carboxykinase 1 (PCK1), the major rate-limiting enzyme of hepatic gluconeogenesis, increases hexosamine biosynthetic pathway (HBP)-mediated protein O-GlcNAcylation in hepatoma cell and promotes cell growth and proliferation. However, whether PCK1 deficiency and hyper O-GlcNAcylation can induce HCC metastasis is largely unknown. Here, gain- and loss-of-function studies demonstrate that PCK1 suppresses HCC metastasis in vitro and in vivo. Specifically, lysine acetyltransferase 5 (KAT5), belonging to the MYST family of histone acetyltransferases (HAT), is highly modified by O-GlcNAcylation in PCK1 knockout hepatoma cells. Mechanistically, PCK1 depletion suppressed KAT5 ubiquitination by increasing its O-GlcNAcylation, thereby stabilizing KAT5. KAT5 O-GlcNAcylation epigenetically activates TWIST1 expression via histone H4 acetylation, and enhances MMP9 and MMP14 expression via c-Myc acetylation, thus promoting epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT) in HCC. In addition, targeting HBP-mediated O-GlcNAcylation of KAT5 inhibits lung metastasis of HCC in hepatospecific Pck1-deletion mice. Collectively, our findings demonstrate that PCK1 depletion increases O-GlcNAcylation of KAT5, epigenetically induces TWIST1 expression and promotes HCC metastasis, and link metabolic enzyme, post-translational modification (PTM) with epigenetic regulation.
  24. Pancreatology. 2021 Oct 05. pii: S1424-3903(21)00576-7. [Epub ahead of print]
      BACKGROUND/OBJECTIVES: Pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC) is characterized by excessive desmoplasia and autophagy-dependent tumorigenic growth. Pancreatic stellate cells (PSCs) as a predominant stromal cell type play a critical role in PDAC biology. We have previously reported that autophagy facilitates PSC activation, however, the mechanism remains unknown. We investigated the mechanism of autophagy in PSC activation.METHODS: We compared gene expression profiles between patient-derived PSCs from pancreatic cancer and chronic pancreatitis using a microarray. The stromal expression of target gene in specimen of PDAC patients (n = 63) was analyzed. The effect of target gene on autophagy and activation of PSCs was investigated by small interfering RNAs transfection, and the relationship between autophagy and ER stress was investigated. We analyzed the growth and fibrosis of xenografted tumor by orthotopic models.
    RESULTS: In analysis of gene expression microarray, endoplasmic reticulum aminopeptidase 2 (ERAP2) upregulated in cancer-associated PSCs was identified as the target gene. High stromal ERAP2 expression is associated with a poor prognosis of PDAC patients. Knockdown of ERAP2 inhibited unfolded protein response mediated autophagy, and led to inactivation of PSCs, thereby attenuating tumor-stromal interactions by inhibiting production of IL-6 and fibronectin. In vivo, the promoting effect of PSCs on xenografted tumor growth and fibrosis was inhibited by ERAP2 knockdown.
    CONCLUSIONS: Our findings demonstrate a novel mechanism of PSCs activation regulated by autophagy. ERAP2 as a promising therapeutic target may provide a novel strategy for the treatment of PDAC.
    Keywords:  Endoplasmic reticulum stress; Stromal remodeling; Tumor-stromal interaction; Tunicamycin
  25. Cell Death Dis. 2021 Oct 14. 12(10): 945
      Breast cancer is the most common cancer in the world. Relapse and metastasis are important factors endangering the life of breast cancer patients, but the mechanism is still unclear. The stabilization of p53 is essential for preventing carcinogenesis, and ubiquitination is one of the main ways to regulate the stability of p53. Tripartite motif-containing 31 (TRIM31) is a new member of the TRIM family and functions as an E3 ubiquitin ligase. It acts as a cancer promoter or suppressor in the malignant processes of multiple cancers. However, the function of TRIM31 in breast cancer progression remains unknown. In this study, we showed that TRIM31 is downregulated in breast cancer tissues and negatively correlated with breast cancer progression. Both gain- and loss-of-function assays indicated that TRIM31 inhibits the proliferation, colony formation, migration, and invasion of breast cancer cells. Further investigation demonstrated that TRIM31 directly interacts with p53, and inducing the K63-linked ubiquitination of p53 via its RING domain, Meanwhile, TRIM31 suppresses the MDM2-mediated K48-linked ubiquitination of p53 through competitive inhibiting the interaction of MDM2 and p53, leading to the p53 stabilization and activation. Knockdown of p53 reversed the inhibitory effects of TRIM31 on the growth and metastasis of breast cancer cells. Moreover, we found that the RING and coiled-coil (C-C) domains of TRIM31 were essential for its tumor suppressor function. Taken together, our findings reveal a novel mechanism by which TRIM31 suppresses breast cancer development through the stabilization and activation of p53 and define a promising therapeutic strategy for restoring TRIM31 to treat breast cancer.
  26. FEBS J. 2021 Oct 12.
      Heat shock proteins maintain protein homeostasis and facilitate the survival of an organism under stress. Archaeal heat shock machinery usually consists of only sHsps, Hsp70, and Hsp60. Moreover, Hsp70 is absent in thermophilic and hyperthermophilic archaea. In the absence of Hsp70, how aggregating protein substrates are transferred to Hsp60 for refolding remains elusive. Here, we investigated the crosstalk in the heat shock response pathway of thermoacidophilic crenarchaeon Sulfolobus acidocaldarius. In the present study, we biophysically and biochemically characterized one of the small heat shock proteins, Hsp14, of Sulfolobus acidocaldarius. Moreover, we investigated its ability to interact with Hsp20 and Hsp60 to facilitate the substrate proteins' folding under stress conditions. Like Hsp20, we demonstrated that the dimer is the active form of Hsp14, and it forms an oligomeric storage form at a higher temperature. More importantly, the dynamics of the Hsp14 oligomer are maintained by rapid subunit exchange between the dimeric states, and the rate of subunit exchange increases with increasing temperature. We also tested the ability of Hsp14 to form hetero-oligomers via subunit exchange with Hsp20. We observed hetero-oligomer formation only at higher temperatures (50-70°C). Furthermore, experiments were performed to investigate the interaction between small heat shock proteins and Hsp60. We demonstrated an enthalpy-driven direct physical interaction between Hsp14 and Hsp60. Our results revealed that Hsp14 could transfer sHsp-captured substrate proteins to Hsp60, which then refolds them back to their active form.
    Keywords:  Aggregation protection; Crenarchaeota; Oligomerization; Protein folding; Small heat shock protein; Subunit exchange; Sulfolobus acidocaldarius; Thermosome
  27. Sci Rep. 2021 Oct 14. 11(1): 20491
      Wolfram syndrome (WS) is an ultra-rare progressive neurodegenerative disorder defined by early-onset diabetes mellitus and optic atrophy. The majority of patients harbour recessive mutations in the WFS1 gene, which encodes for Wolframin, a transmembrane endoplasmic reticulum protein. There is limited availability of human ocular and brain tissues, and there are few animal models for WS that replicate the neuropathology and clinical phenotype seen in this disorder. We, therefore, characterised two wfs1 zebrafish knockout models harbouring nonsense wfs1a and wfs1b mutations. Both homozygous mutant wfs1a-/- and wfs1b-/- embryos showed significant morphological abnormalities in early development. The wfs1b-/- zebrafish exhibited a more pronounced neurodegenerative phenotype with delayed neuronal development, progressive loss of retinal ganglion cells and clear evidence of visual dysfunction on functional testing. At 12 months of age, wfs1b-/- zebrafish had a significantly lower RGC density per 100 μm2 (mean ± standard deviation; 19 ± 1.7) compared with wild-type (WT) zebrafish (25 ± 2.3, p < 0.001). The optokinetic response for wfs1b-/- zebrafish was significantly reduced at 8 and 16 rpm testing speeds at both 4 and 12 months of age compared with WT zebrafish. An upregulation of the unfolded protein response was observed in mutant zebrafish indicative of increased endoplasmic reticulum stress. Mutant wfs1b-/- zebrafish exhibit some of the key features seen in patients with WS, providing a versatile and cost-effective in vivo model that can be used to further investigate the underlying pathophysiology of WS and potential therapeutic interventions.
  28. Curr Top Med Chem. 2021 Oct 14.
      Due to developments in modern chemistry, previously undruggable targets are becoming druggable thanks to selective degradation using the ubiquitin-proteasomal degradation system. PROteolysis TArgeting Chimeras (PROTACs) are heterobifunctional molecules designed specifically to degrade target proteins (protein of interest, POI). They are of significant interest to industry and academia as they are highly specific and can target previously undruggable target proteins from transcription factors to enzymes. More than 15 degraders are expected to be evaluated in clinical trials by the end of 2021. Herein, we describe recent advances in the design and development of PROTAC-mediated degradation of histone deacetylases (HDACs). PROTAC-mediated degradation of HDACs can offer some significant advantages over direct inhibition, such as the use of substoichiometric doses and the potential to disrupt enzyme-independent HDAC function. Herein, we discuss the potential implications of the degradation of HDACs with HDAC knockout studies and the selection of HDAC inhibitors and E3 ligase ligands for the design of the PROTACs. The potential utility of HDAC PROTACs in various disease pathologies from cancer to inflammation to neurodegeneration is driving the interest in this field.
    Keywords:  HDAC; PROTAC; cancer; degrader; histone deacetylase ; multitarget
  29. Mol Cell. 2021 Oct 04. pii: S1097-2765(21)00749-8. [Epub ahead of print]
      Rapid protein degradation enables cells to quickly modulate protein abundance. Dysregulation of short-lived proteins plays essential roles in disease pathogenesis. A focused map of short-lived proteins remains understudied. Cycloheximide, a translational inhibitor, is widely used in targeted studies to measure degradation kinetics for short-lived proteins. Here, we combined cycloheximide chase assays with advanced quantitative proteomics to map short-lived proteins under translational inhibition in four human cell lines. Among 11,747 quantified proteins, we identified 1,017 short-lived proteins (half-lives ≤ 8 h). These short-lived proteins are less abundant, evolutionarily younger, and less thermally stable than other proteins. We quantified 103 proteins with different stabilities among cell lines. We showed that U2OS and HCT116 cells express truncated forms of ATRX and GMDS, respectively, which have lower stability than their full-length counterparts. This study provides a large-scale resource of human short-lived proteins under translational arrest, leading to untapped avenues of protein regulation for therapeutic interventions.
    Keywords:  TMTpro tags; multiplexed quantitative proteomics; protein degradation; protein half-lives; short-lived proteins