bims-proteo Biomed News
on Proteostasis
Issue of 2022‒04‒17
thirty-two papers selected by
Eric Chevet

  1. Elife. 2022 Apr 13. pii: e76171. [Epub ahead of print]11
      In eukaryotic cells, stressors reprogram the cellular proteome by activating the integrated stress response (ISR). In its canonical form, stress-sensing kinases phosphorylate the eukaryotic translation initiation factor eIF2 (eIF2-P), which ultimately leads to reduced levels of ternary complex required for initiation of mRNA translation. Previously we showed that translational control is primarily exerted through a conformational switch in eIF2's nucleotide exchange factor, eIF2B, which shifts from its active A-State conformation to its inhibited I-State conformation upon eIF2-P binding, resulting in reduced nucleotide exchange on eIF2 (Schoof et al. 2021). Here, we show functionally and structurally how a single histidine to aspartate point mutation in eIF2B's β subunit (H160D) mimics the effects of eIF2-P binding by promoting an I-State like conformation, resulting in eIF2-P independent activation of the ISR. These findings corroborate our previously proposed A/I-State model of allosteric ISR regulation.
    Keywords:  biochemistry; chemical biology; human; molecular biophysics; structural biology
  2. Cell Mol Life Sci. 2022 Apr 11. 79(5): 237
      Epitranscriptomic changes in RNA catalyzed by the RNA-editing enzyme ADAR1 play an essential role in the regulation of diverse molecular and cellular processes, both under physiological conditions and in disease states, including cancer. Yet, despite a growing body of evidence pointing to ADAR1 as a potential therapeutic target, the mechanisms regulating its cellular abundance and activity, particularly of its constitutively expressed and ubiquitous form, ADAR1p110, are poorly understood. Here, we report the HECT-type E3 ubiquitin ligase SMURF2 as a pivotal regulator of ADAR1p110. We show that SMURF2, which is primarily known to promote the ubiquitin-mediated degradation of its protein substrates, protects ADAR1p110 from proteolysis and promotes its A-to-I editase activity in human and mouse cells and tissues. ADAR1p110's interactome analysis performed in human cells also showed a positive influence of SMURF2 on the stability and function of ADAR1p110. Mechanistically, we found that SMURF2 directly binds, ubiquitinates and stabilizes ADAR1p110 in an E3 ubiquitin ligase-dependent manner, through ADAR1p110 ubiquitination at lysine-744 (K744). Mutation of this residue to arginine (K744R), which is also associated with several human disorders, including dyschromatosis symmetrica hereditaria (DSH) and some types of cancer, abolished SMURF2-mediated protection of ADAR1p110 from both proteasomal and lysosomal degradation and inactivated ADAR1p110-mediated RNA editing. Our findings reveal a novel mechanism underlying the regulation of ADAR1 in mammalian cells and suggest SMURF2 as a key cellular factor influencing the protein abundance, interactions and functions of ADAR1p110.
    Keywords:  A-to-I RNA editing; ADAR1p110; Interactome; SMURF2; Ubiquitination
  3. Dev Cell. 2022 Apr 07. pii: S1534-5807(22)00206-4. [Epub ahead of print]
      RNA transfer via extracellular vesicles (EVs) influences cell phenotypes; however, lack of information regarding biogenesis of RNA-containing EVs has limited progress in the field. Here, we identify endoplasmic reticulum membrane contact sites (ER MCSs) as platforms for the generation of RNA-containing EVs. We identify a subpopulation of small EVs that is highly enriched in RNA and regulated by the ER MCS linker protein VAP-A. Functionally, VAP-A-regulated EVs are critical for miR-100 transfer between cells and in vivo tumor formation. Lipid analysis of VAP-A-knockdown EVs revealed reductions in the EV biogenesis lipid ceramide. Knockdown of the VAP-A-binding ceramide transfer protein CERT led to similar defects in EV RNA content. Imaging experiments revealed that VAP-A promotes luminal filling of multivesicular bodies (MVBs), CERT localizes to MVBs, and the ceramide-generating enzyme neutral sphingomyelinase 2 colocalizes with VAP-A-positive ER. We propose that ceramide transfer via VAP-A-CERT linkages drives the biogenesis of a select RNA-containing EV population.
    Keywords:  ER membrane contact sites; RNA-binding proteins; VAP-A; ceramide; colon cancer; exosomes; extracellular RNA; extracellular vesicles; miRNA
  4. J Biol Chem. 2022 Apr 07. pii: S0021-9258(22)00339-8. [Epub ahead of print] 101899
      The spinocerebellar ataxias (SCAs) are a class of incurable diseases characterized by degeneration of the cerebellum that results in movement disorder. Recently, a new heritable form of SCA, SCA48, was attributed to dominant mutations in STUB1; however, little is known about how these mutations cause SCA48. STUB1 encodes for the protein C-terminus of Hsc70 Interacting Protein (CHIP), an E3 ubiquitin ligase. CHIP is known to regulate proteostasis by recruiting chaperones via a N-terminal tetratricopeptide repeat (TPR) domain and recruiting E2 ubiquitin-conjugating enzymes via a C-terminal U-box domain. These interactions allow CHIP to mediate the ubiquitination of chaperone-bound, misfolded proteins to promote their degradation via the proteasome. Here we have identified a novel, de novo mutation in STUB1 in a patient with spinocerebellar ataxia type 48 (SCA48) encoding for an A52G point mutation in the TPR domain of CHIP. Utilizing an array of biophysical, biochemical, and cellular assays, we demonstrate that the CHIPA52G point mutant retains E3-ligase activity but has decreased affinity for chaperones. We further show that this mutant decreases cellular fitness in response to certain cellular stressors and induces neurodegeneration in a transgenic Caenorhabditis elegans model of SCA48. Together, our data identify the A52G mutant as a cause of SCA48 and provide molecular insight into how mutations in STUB1 cause SCA48.
    Keywords:  E3 ubiquitin-ligase; ataxia; chaperone; neurodegeneration; neurodegenerative disease
  5. Bioessays. 2022 Apr 13. e2200008
      Selective protein degradation maintains cellular homeostasis, but this process is disrupted in many diseases. Targeted protein degradation (TPD) approaches, built upon existing cellular mechanisms, are promising methods for therapeutically regulating protein levels. Here, we review the diverse palette of tools that are now available for doing so throughout the gene expression pathway and in specific cellular compartments. These include methods for directly removing targeted proteins via the ubiquitin proteasome system with proteolysis targeting chimeras (PROTACs) or dephosphorylation targeting chimeras (DEPTACs). Similar effects can also be achieved through the lysosomal system with autophagy-targeting chimeras (AUTACs), autophagosome tethering compounds (ATTECs), and lysosome targeting chimeras (LYTACs). Other methods act upstream to degrade RNAs (ribonuclease targeting chimeras; RIBOTACs) or transcription factors (transcription factor targeting chimeras; TRAFTACs), offering control throughout the gene expression process. We highlight the evolution and function of these methods and discuss their clinical implications in diverse disease contexts.
    Keywords:  lysosomal degradation; proteasome; targeted protein degradation; ubiquitin
  6. Autophagy. 2022 Apr 10. 1-21
      Selective macroautophagy/autophagy maintains cellular homeostasis through the lysosomal degradation of specific cellular proteins or organelles. The pro-survival effect of selective autophagy has been well-characterized, but the mechanism by which it drives cell death is still poorly understood. Here, we use a quantitative proteomic approach to identify HPCAL1 (hippocalcin like 1) as a novel autophagy receptor for the selective degradation of CDH2 (cadherin 2) during ferroptosis. HPCAL1-dependent CDH2 depletion increases susceptibility to ferroptotic death by reducing membrane tension and favoring lipid peroxidation. Site-directed mutagenesis aided by bioinformatic analyses revealed that the autophagic degradation of CDH2 requires PRKCQ (protein kinase C theta)-mediated HPCAL1 phosphorylation on Thr149, as well as a non-classical LC3-interacting region motif located between amino acids 46-51. An unbiased drug screening campaign involving 4208 small molecule compounds led to the identification of a ferroptosis inhibitor that suppressed HPCAL1 expression. The genetic or pharmacological inhibition of HPCAL1 prevented ferroptosis-induced tumor suppression and pancreatitis in suitable mouse models. These findings provide a framework for understanding how selective autophagy promotes ferroptotic cell death.Abbreviations: ANXA7: annexin A7; ARNTL: aryl hydrocarbon receptor nuclear translocator like; CCK8: cell counting kit-8; CDH2: cadherin 2; CETSAs: cellular thermal shift assays; CPT2: carnitine palmitoyltransferase 2; DAMP, danger/damage-associated molecular pattern; DPPH: 2,2-diphenyl-1-picrylhydrazyl; DFO: deferoxamine; EBNA1BP2: EBNA1 binding protein 2; EIF4G1: eukaryotic translation initiation factor 4 gamma 1; FBL: fibrillarin; FKBP1A: FKBP prolyl isomerase 1A; FTH1: ferritin heavy chain 1; GPX4: glutathione peroxidase 4; GSDMs: gasdermins; HBSS: Hanks' buffered salt solution; HMGB1: high mobility group box 1; HNRNPUL1: heterogeneous nuclear ribonucleoprotein U like 1; HPCAL1: hippocalcin like 1; H1-3/HIST1H1D: H1.3 linker histone, cluster member; IKE: imidazole ketone erastin; KD: knockdown; LDH: lactate dehydrogenase; LIR: LC3-interacting region; MAGOH: mago homolog, exon junction complex subunit; MAP1LC3B: microtubule associated protein 1 light chain 3 beta; MDA: malondialdehyde; MLKL: mixed lineage kinase domain like pseudokinase; MPO: myeloperoxidase; MTOR: mechanistic target of rapamycin kinase; OE: overexpressing; OSTM1: osteoclastogenesis associated transmembrane protein 1; PRKC/PKC: protein kinase C; PRKAR1A: protein kinase cAMP-dependent type I regulatory subunit alpha; PRDX3: peroxiredoxin 3; PTGS2: prostaglandin-endoperoxide synthase 2; ROS: reactive oxygen species; SLC7A11: solute carrier family 7 member 11; SLC40A1: solute carrier family 40 member 1; SPTAN1: spectrin alpha, non-erythrocytic 1; STS: staurosporine; UBE2M: ubiquitin conjugating enzyme E2 M; ZYX: zyxin.
    Keywords:  Autophagy; degradation; ferroptosis; inhibitor; mechanotransduction; pancreas; phosphorylation
  7. Elife. 2022 Apr 11. pii: e74531. [Epub ahead of print]11
      Autophagy receptor (or adaptor) proteins facilitate lysosomal destruction of various organelles in response to cellular stress, including nutrient deprivation. To what extent membrane-resident autophagy receptors also respond to organelle-restricted cues to induce selective autophagy remains poorly understood. We find that latent activation of the yeast pexophagy receptor Atg36 by the casein kinase Hrr25 in rich media is repressed by the ATPase activity of Pex1/6, the catalytic subunits of the exportomer AAA+ transmembrane complex enabling protein import into peroxisomes. Quantitative proteomics of purified Pex3, an obligate Atg36 coreceptor, support a model in which the exportomer tail anchored to the peroxisome membrane represses Atg36 phosphorylation on Pex3 without assistance from additional membrane factors. Indeed, we reconstitute inhibition of Atg36 phosphorylation in vitro using soluble Pex1/6 and define an N-terminal unstructured region of Atg36 that enables regulation by binding to Pex1. Our findings uncover a mechanism by which a compartment-specific AAA+ complex mediating organelle biogenesis and protein quality control staves off induction of selective autophagy.
    Keywords:  Atg36; Hrr25; Pex1/6; S. cerevisiae; cell biology; pexophagy; receptor; selective autophagy
  8. Blood Cancer Discov. 2022 Apr 11. pii: bloodcandisc.BCD-21-0144-E.2021. [Epub ahead of print]
      Approximately 20% of patients with myeloproliferative neoplasms (MPNs) harbor mutations in the gene calreticulin (CALR), with 80% of those mutations classified as either type 1 or type 2. While type 2 CALR mutant proteins retain many of the Ca2+ binding sites present in the wild type protein, type 1 CALR mutant proteins lose these residues. The functional consequences of this differential loss of Ca2+ binding sites remain yet unexplored. Here, we show that the loss of Ca2+ binding residues in the type 1 mutant CALR protein directly impairs its Ca2+ binding ability, which in turn leads to depleted endoplasmic reticulum (ER) Ca2+ and subsequent activation of the IRE1a/XBP1 pathway of the unfolded protein response. Genetic or pharmacological inhibition of IRE1a/XBP1 signaling induces cell death only in type 1 mutant but not type 2 mutant or wild type CALR-expressing cells, and abrogates type 1 mutant CALR-driven MPN disease progression in vivo.
  9. Autophagy. 2022 Apr 11.
      Macroautophagy/autophagy is a cellular and energy homeostatic mechanism that contributes to maintain the number of primordial follicles, germ cell survival, and anti-ovarian aging. However, it remains unknown whether autophagy in granulosa cells affects oocyte maturation. Here, we show a clear tendency of reduced autophagy level in human granulosa cells from women of advanced maternal age, implying a potential negative correlation between autophagy levels and oocyte quality. We therefore established a co-culture system and show that either pharmacological inhibition or genetic ablation of autophagy in granulosa cells negatively affect oocyte quality and fertilization ability. Moreover, our metabolomics analysis indicates that the adverse impact of autophagy impairment on oocyte quality is mediated by downregulated citrate levels, while exogenous supplementation of citrate can significantly restore the oocyte maturation. Mechanistically, we found that ACLY (ATP citrate lyase), which is a crucial enzyme catalyzing the cleavage of citrate, was preferentially associated with K63-linked ubiquitin chains and recognized by the autophagy receptor protein SQSTM1/p62 for selective autophagic degradation. In human follicles, the autophagy level in granulosa cells was downregulated with maternal aging, accompanied by decreased citrate in the follicular fluid, implying a potential correlation between citrate metabolism and oocyte quality. We also show that elevated citrate levels in porcine follicular fluid promote oocyte maturation. Collectively, our data reveal that autophagy in granulosa cells is a beneficial mechanism to maintain a certain degree of citrate by selectively targeting ACLY during oocyte maturation.
    Keywords:  ACLY; SQSTM1/p62; citrate; oocyte maturation; selective autophagy
  10. PLoS Biol. 2022 Apr 13. 20(4): e3001601
      Coat complexes coordinate cargo recognition through cargo adaptors with biogenesis of transport carriers during integral membrane protein trafficking. Here, we combine biochemical, structural, and cellular analyses to establish the mechanistic basis through which SNX27-Retromer, a major endosomal cargo adaptor, couples to the membrane remodeling endosomal SNX-BAR sorting complex for promoting exit 1 (ESCPE-1). In showing that the SNX27 FERM (4.1/ezrin/radixin/moesin) domain directly binds acidic-Asp-Leu-Phe (aDLF) motifs in the SNX1/SNX2 subunits of ESCPE-1, we propose a handover model where SNX27-Retromer captured cargo proteins are transferred into ESCPE-1 transport carriers to promote endosome-to-plasma membrane recycling. By revealing that assembly of the SNX27:Retromer:ESCPE-1 coat evolved in a stepwise manner during early metazoan evolution, likely reflecting the increasing complexity of endosome-to-plasma membrane recycling from the ancestral opisthokont to modern animals, we provide further evidence of the functional diversification of yeast pentameric Retromer in the recycling of hundreds of integral membrane proteins in metazoans.
  11. Cancers (Basel). 2022 Mar 22. pii: 1607. [Epub ahead of print]14(7):
      KAP1 is an essential nuclear factor acting as a scaffold for protein complexes repressing transcription. KAP1 plays fundamental role in normal and cancer cell biology, affecting cell proliferation, DNA damage response, genome integrity maintenance, migration and invasion, as well as anti-viral and immune response. Despite the foregoing, the mechanisms regulating KAP1 cellular abundance are poorly understood. In this study, we identified the E3 ubiquitin ligase SMURF2 as an important regulator of KAP1. We show that SMURF2 directly interacts with KAP1 and ubiquitinates it in vitro and in the cellular environment in a catalytically-dependent manner. Interestingly, while in the examined untransformed cells, SMURF2 mostly exerted a negative impact on KAP1 expression, a phenomenon that was also monitored in certain Smurf2-ablated mouse tissues, in tumor cells SMURF2 stabilized KAP1. This stabilization relied on the unaltered E3 ubiquitin ligase function of SMURF2. Further investigations showed that SMURF2 regulates KAP1 post-translationally, interfering with its proteasomal degradation. The conducted immunohistochemical studies showed that the reciprocal relationship between the expression of SMURF2 and KAP1 also exists in human normal and breast cancer tissues and suggested that this relationship may be disrupted by the carcinogenic process. Finally, through stratifying KAP1 interactome in cells expressing either SMURF2 wild-type or its E3 ligase-dead form, we demonstrate that SMURF2 has a profound impact on KAP1 protein-protein interactions and the associated functions, adding an additional layer in the SMURF2-mediated regulation of KAP1. Cumulatively, these findings uncover SMURF2 as a novel regulator of KAP1, governing its protein expression, interactions, and functions.
    Keywords:  KAP1/TRIM28; SMURF2; cancer; interactome; ubiquitination
  12. EMBO J. 2022 Apr 12. e109390
      Mitophagy removes defective mitochondria via lysosomal elimination. Increased mitophagy coincides with metabolic reprogramming, yet it remains unknown whether mitophagy is a cause or consequence of such state changes. The signalling pathways that integrate with mitophagy to sustain cell and tissue integrity also remain poorly defined. We performed temporal metabolomics on mammalian cells treated with deferiprone, a therapeutic iron chelator that stimulates PINK1/PARKIN-independent mitophagy. Iron depletion profoundly rewired the metabolome, hallmarked by remodelling of lipid metabolism within minutes of treatment. DGAT1-dependent lipid droplet biosynthesis occurred several hours before mitochondrial clearance, with lipid droplets bordering mitochondria upon iron chelation. We demonstrate that DGAT1 inhibition restricts mitophagy in vitro, with impaired lysosomal homeostasis and cell viability. Importantly, genetic depletion of DGAT1 in vivo significantly impaired neuronal mitophagy and locomotor function in Drosophila. Our data define iron depletion as a potent signal that rapidly reshapes metabolism and establishes an unexpected synergy between lipid homeostasis and mitophagy that safeguards cell and tissue integrity.
    Keywords:  DGAT1; iron; lipid droplet; metabolism; mitophagy
  13. EMBO J. 2022 Apr 11. e108898
      The nonsense-mediated mRNA decay (NMD) pathway monitors translation termination in order to degrade transcripts with premature stop codons and regulate thousands of human genes. Here, we show that an alternative mammalian-specific isoform of the core NMD factor UPF1, termed UPF1LL , enables condition-dependent remodeling of NMD specificity. Previous studies indicate that the extension of a conserved regulatory loop in the UPF1LL helicase core confers a decreased propensity to dissociate from RNA upon ATP hydrolysis relative to UPF1SL , the major UPF1 isoform. Using biochemical and transcriptome-wide approaches, we find that UPF1LL can circumvent the protective RNA binding proteins PTBP1 and hnRNP L to preferentially bind and down-regulate transcripts with long 3'UTRs normally shielded from NMD. Unexpectedly, UPF1LL supports induction of NMD on new populations of substrate mRNAs in response to activation of the integrated stress response and impaired translation efficiency. Thus, while canonical NMD is abolished by moderate translational repression, UPF1LL activity is enhanced, offering the possibility to rapidly rewire NMD specificity in response to cellular stress.
    Keywords:  PTBP1; UPF1; hnRNP L; nonsense-mediated mRNA decay; translation termination
  14. Cells. 2022 Apr 06. pii: 1242. [Epub ahead of print]11(7):
      Neuronal growth regulator 1 (NEGR1) is a brain-enriched membrane protein that is involved in neural cell communication and synapse formation. Accumulating evidence indicates that NEGR1 is a generic risk factor for various psychiatric diseases including autism and depression. Endoglycosidase digestion of single NEGR1 mutants revealed that the wild type NEGR1 has six putative N-glycosylation sites partly organized in a Golgi-dependent manner. To understand the role of each putative N-glycan residue, we generated a series of multi-site mutants (2MT-6MT) with additive mutations. Cell surface staining and biotinylation revealed that NEGR1 mutants 1MT to 4MT were localized on the cell surface at different levels, whereas 5MT and 6MT were retained in the endoplasmic reticulum to form highly stable multimer complexes. This indicated 5MT and 6MT are less likely to fold correctly. Furthermore, the removal of two N-terminal sites N75 and N155 was sufficient to completely abrogate membrane targeting. An in vivo binding assay using the soluble NEGR1 protein demonstrated that glycans N286, N294 and N307 on the C-terminal immunoglobulin-like domain play important roles in homophilic interactions. Taken together, these results suggest that the N-glycan moieties of NEGR1 are closely involved in the folding, trafficking, and homodimer formation of NEGR1 protein in a site-specific manner.
    Keywords:  ER; N-glycosylation; membrane targeting; mutagenesis; neural cell adhesion molecule
  15. Nat Cell Biol. 2022 Apr 11.
      Protein degradation is critical to maintaining cellular homeostasis, and perturbation of the ubiquitin proteasome system leads to the accumulation of protein aggregates. These aggregates are either directed towards autophagy for destruction or sequestered into an inclusion, termed the aggresome, at the centrosome. Utilizing high-resolution quantitative analysis, here, we define aggresome assembly at the centrosome in human cells. Centriolar satellites are proteinaceous granules implicated in the trafficking of proteins to the centrosome. During aggresome assembly, satellites were required for the growth of the aggresomal structure from an initial ring of phosphorylated HSP27 deposited around the centrioles. The seeding of this phosphorylated HSP27 ring depended on the centrosomal proteins CP110, CEP97 and CEP290. Owing to limiting amounts of CP110, senescent cells, which are characterized by the accumulation of protein aggregates, were defective in aggresome formation. Furthermore, satellites and CP110-CEP97-CEP290 were required for the aggregation of mutant huntingtin. Together, these data reveal roles for CP110-CEP97-CEP290 and satellites in the control of cellular proteostasis and the aggregation of disease-relevant proteins.
  16. J Biol Chem. 2022 Apr 06. pii: S0021-9258(22)00345-3. [Epub ahead of print] 101905
      The toxic accumulation of misfolded proteins as inclusions, fibrils, or aggregates is a hallmark of many neurodegenerative diseases. However, how molecular chaperones, such as Hsp70 and Hsp90, defend cells against the toxic consequences of protein misfolding remains unclear. The ATP-dependent foldase function of both Hsp70 and Hsp90 actively transitions the toxic misfolded proteins back to their native conformation. By contrast, the ATP-independent holdase function of Hsp70 and Hsp90 prevents the toxic accumulation of misfolded proteins. Foldase and holdase functions can protect against the toxicity associated with protein misfolding, yet we are only beginning to understand the underlying mechanisms and how they modulate neurodegeneration. In his review, we compare recent structural findings regarding the binding of Hsp90 to misfolded and intrinsically disordered proteins, such as tau, α-synuclein, and TDP-43. We propose that Hsp90 and to some extent Hsp70 interact with these proteins through an extended and dynamic interface that span the surface of multiple domains of the chaperone proteins. This contrasts with many other Hsp90-client protein interactions for which only a single bound conformation of Hsp90 is proposed. The dynamic nature of these multi-domain interactions allows polymorphic binding of multiple conformations to vast regions of Hsp90. The holdase functions of Hsp70 and Hsp90 may thus allow neuronal cells to modulate misfolded proteins more energy efficient by reducing the long-term ATP running costs of the chaperone budget. However, it remains unclear whether holdase functions protect cells by preventing aggregate formation or can increase neurotoxicity by inadvertently stabilizing deleterious oligomers.
    Keywords:  Hsp90; TDP-43; alpha-synuclein; intrinsically disordered proteins; molecular chaperones; tau
  17. STAR Protoc. 2022 Jun 17. 3(2): 101274
      Membrane proteins (MPs) are essential in many cellular functions. To maintain proteostasis, MPs are downregulated via ubiquitination and degradation. Here, we describe an optimized protocol to analyze MP degradation using quantitative western blot and flow cytometry-based approaches. We use the degradation of Ypq1, a vacuole membrane lysine transporter, to demonstrate the protocol, which can be adapted for other organelle MPs and thus provide useful tools to study MP regulation in yeast and other model organisms. For complete details on the use and execution of this protocol, please refer to Arines et al. (2021) and Yang et al. (2020).
    Keywords:  Cell Biology; Cell Membrane; Flow Cytometry/Mass Cytometry; High Throughput Screening; Model Organisms; Molecular Biology; Molecular/Chemical Probes; Protein Biochemistry
  18. iScience. 2022 Apr 15. 25(4): 104100
      Pediatric osteosarcomas (OS) exhibit extensive genomic instability that has complicated the identification of new targeted therapies. We found the vast majority of 108 patient tumor samples and patient-derived xenografts (PDXs), which display an unusually dilated endoplasmic reticulum (ER), have reduced expression of four COPII vesicle components that trigger aberrant accumulation of procollagen-I protein within the ER. CRISPR activation technology was used to increase the expression of two of these, SAR1A and SEC24D, to physiological levels. This was sufficient to resolve the dilated ER morphology, restore collagen-I secretion, and enhance secretion of some extracellular matrix (ECM) proteins. However, orthotopic xenograft growth was not adversely affected by restoration of only SAR1A and SEC24D. Our studies reveal the mechanism responsible for the dilated ER that is a hallmark characteristic of OS and identify a highly conserved molecular signature for this genetically unstable tumor. Possible relationships of this phenotype to tumorigenesis are discussed.
    Keywords:  Cancer; Cell biology
  19. Hepatology. 2022 Apr 16.
      BACKGROUND AND AIMS: As a global health threat, nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH) has been confirmed to be a chronic progressive liver disease that is strongly associated with obesity. However, no approved drugs or efficient therapeutic strategies are valid, practically because its complicated pathologic processes is underestimated.APPROACH AND RESULTS: We identified the RING-type E3 ubiquitin transferase-tripartite motif-containing protein 31 (TRIM31), a member of E3 ubiquitin ligases family, as a novel and efficient endogenous inhibitor of transforming growth factor-beta-activated kinase 1 (MAP3K7), and we further confirmed that TRIM31 is an MAP3K7-interacting protein and promotes MAP3K7 degradation by enhancing ubiquitination of K48-linkage in hepatocytes. Hepatocyte-specific Trim31 deletion blocks hepatic metabolism homeostasis, concomitant with glucose metabolic syndrome, lipid accumulation, upregulated inflammation, and dramatically facilitates NASH progression. Inversely, transgenic overexpression, lentivirus or adeno-associated virus-mediated Trim31 gene therapy restrains NASH in three dietary mice models. Mechanistically, in response to metabolic insults, TRIM31 interacts with MAP3K7, and conjugates K48-linked ubiquitination chains to promotes MAP3K7 degradation, thus blocks MAP3K7 abundance and its downstream signaling cascade activation in hepatocytes.
    CONCLUSIONS: TRIM31 may serve as a promising therapeutic target for NASH treatment and associated metabolic disorders.
    Keywords:  E3 ubiquitin ligase; Mitogen-activated protein kinase kinase kinase 7; Nonalcoholic steatohepatitis; Tripartite motif-containing protein 31
  20. Eur J Immunol. 2022 Apr 13.
      The intracellular mechanisms safeguarding dendritic cell (DC) function are of biomedical interest in several immune-related diseases. Type 1 conventional DCs (cDC1s) are prominent targets of immunotherapy typified by constitutive activation of the unfolded protein response (UPR) sensor IRE1. Through its RNase domain, IRE1 regulates key processes in cDC1s including survival, endoplasmic reticulum architecture and function. However, most evidence linking IRE1 RNase with cDC1 biology emerges from mouse studies and it is currently unknown whether human cDC1s also activate the enzyme to preserve cellular homeostasis. In this work, we report that human cDC1s constitutively activate IRE1 RNase in steady-state, which is evidenced by marked expression of IRE1, XBP1s and target genes, and low levels of mRNA substrates of the IRE1 RNase domain. On a functional level, pharmacological inhibition of the IRE1 RNase domain curtailed IL-12 and TNF production by cDC1s upon stimulation with toll-like receptor agonists. Altogether, this work demonstrates that activation of the IRE1/XBP1s axis is a conserved feature of cDC1s across species and suggests that the UPR sensor may also play a relevant role in the biology of the human lineage. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
    Keywords:  DC activation; IRE1; UPR; XBP1s; cDC1s
  21. Nat Commun. 2022 Apr 11. 13(1): 1934
      The MARCH E3 ubiquitin (Ub) ligase MARCH1 regulates trafficking of major histocompatibility complex class II (MHC II) and CD86, molecules of critical importance to immunity. Here we show, using a genome-wide CRISPR knockout screen, that ubiquitin-like protein 3 (UBL3) is a necessary component of ubiquitination-mediated trafficking of these molecules in mice and in humans. Ubl3-deficient mice have elevated MHC II and CD86 expression on the surface of professional and atypical antigen presenting cells. UBL3 also regulates MHC II and CD86 in human dendritic cells (DCs) and macrophages. UBL3 impacts ubiquitination of MARCH1 substrates, a mechanism that requires UBL3 plasma membrane anchoring via prenylation. Loss of UBL3 alters adaptive immunity with impaired development of thymic regulatory T cells, loss of conventional type 1 DCs, increased number of trogocytic marginal zone B cells, and defective in vivo MHC II and MHC I antigen presentation. In summary, we identify UBL3 as a conserved, critical factor in MARCH1-mediated ubiquitination with important roles in immune responses.
  22. J Biol Chem. 2022 Apr 11. pii: S0021-9258(22)00370-2. [Epub ahead of print] 101930
      Immune checkpoint blockade therapy is perhaps the most important development in cancer treatment in recent memory. It is based on decades of investigation into the biology of immune cells and the role of the immune system in controlling cancer growth. While the molecular circuitry that governs the immune system in general - and anti-tumor immunity in particular - is intensely studied, far less attention has been paid to the role of cellular stress in this process. Proteostasis, intimately linked to cell stress responses, refers to the dynamic regulation of the cellular proteome and is maintained through a complex network of systems that govern the synthesis, folding, and degradation of proteins in the cell. Disruption of these systems can result in the loss of protein function, altered protein function, the formation of toxic aggregates, or pathologies associated with cell stress. However, the importance of proteostasis extends beyond its role in maintaining proper protein function; proteostasis governs how tolerant cells may be to mutations in protein coding genes and the overall half-life of proteins. Such gene expression changes may be associated with human diseases including neurodegenerative diseases, metabolic disease, and cancer and manifest at the protein level against the backdrop of the proteostasis network in any given cellular environment. In this review, we focus on the role of proteostasis in regulating immune responses against cancer as well the role of proteostasis in determining immunogenicity of cancer cells.
    Keywords:  Antigen processing; Cancer; Cell stress; Chaperones; Major Histocompatibility Complex; Proteasome; Protein degradation; Protein folding; Proteostasis; T cells
  23. Cell Rep. 2022 Apr 12. pii: S2211-1247(22)00416-8. [Epub ahead of print]39(2): 110664
      Chloroplasts are the site of numerous biochemical reactions including photosynthesis, but they also produce reactive oxygen species (ROS) that negatively affect chloroplast integrity. The chaperone-like CDC48 complex plays critical roles in ubiquitin-dependent protein degradation in yeast and mammals, but its function in plants is largely unknown. Here, we show that defects in CDC48A and its cofactors UFD1 and NPL4 lead to the accumulation of ubiquitinated chloroplast proteins in Arabidopsis thaliana. We reveal that two plastid genome-encoded proteins, RbcL and AtpB, associate with the CDC48 complex. Strikingly, RbcL and AtpB are ubiquitinated and degraded by the 26S proteasome pathway upon ROS stress, and these processes are impaired by defects of the CDC48 complex. Functional analysis demonstrates that the CDC48 complex is required for plant tolerance to ROS. This study reveals a role for the plant CDC48 complex in modulating ubiquitin-dependent degradation of intra-chloroplast proteins in response to oxidative stress.
    Keywords:  CP: Plants; Cdc48; chloroplast; protein degradation; ubiquitination
  24. PLoS Genet. 2022 Apr 14. 18(4): e1010152
      The Cdk5 kinase plays prominent roles in nervous system development, plasticity, behavior and disease. It also has important, non-neuronal functions in cancer, the immune system and insulin secretion. At present, we do not fully understand negative regulatory mechanisms that restrict Cdk5. Here, we use Caenorhabditis elegans to show that CDK-5 is inhibited by the RPM-1/FSN-1 ubiquitin ligase complex. This atypical RING ubiquitin ligase is conserved from C. elegans through mammals. Our finding originated from unbiased, in vivo affinity purification proteomics, which identified CDK-5 as a putative RPM-1 substrate. CRISPR-based, native biochemistry showed that CDK-5 interacts with the RPM-1/FSN-1 ubiquitin ligase complex. A CRISPR engineered RPM-1 substrate 'trap' enriched CDK-5 binding, which was mediated by the FSN-1 substrate recognition module. To test the functional genetic relationship between the RPM-1/FSN-1 ubiquitin ligase complex and CDK-5, we evaluated axon termination in mechanosensory neurons and motor neurons. Our results indicate that RPM-1/FSN-1 ubiquitin ligase activity restricts CDK-5 to control axon termination. Collectively, these proteomic, biochemical and genetic results increase our understanding of mechanisms that restrain Cdk5 in the nervous system.
  25. Autophagy. 2022 Apr 12. 1-3
      LC3 lipidation-mediated selective macroautophagy/autophagy helps eukaryotes to defend against endogenous dangers and foreign invaders. However, LC3 activation mechanisms of selective autophagy are still elusive. We previously determined that the V-ATPase-ATG16L1 axis is critical for LC3 recruitment to bacteria-residing vacuoles, whereas the Salmonella effector SopF directly targets V-ATPase to disrupt ATG16L1 interaction. Here we show that host ARF GTPase binding causes SopF-dependent ADP-ribosylation of the Gln124 site of the ATP6V0C/V0C subunit of V-ATPase. Furthermore, LC3 activation by pH perturbation of endolysosomes and the Golgi apparatus is also abolished by SopF or a ATP6V0CQ124A mutation, illustrating that disruption of the proton gradient in acidic compartments is a universal signal that triggers V-ATPase-ATG16L1-induced LC3 lipidation.
    Keywords:  ARF; ATG16L1; SopF; V-ATPase; VAIL; endomembrane damage; pH disturbance; selective autophagy
  26. Nat Cell Biol. 2022 Apr 11.
      Biomolecular condensates organize biochemistry, yet little is known about how cells control the position and scale of these structures. In cells, condensates often appear as relatively small assemblies that do not coarsen into a single droplet despite their propensity to fuse. Here, we report that ribonucleoprotein condensates of the glutamine-rich protein Whi3 interact with the endoplasmic reticulum, which prompted us to examine how membrane association controls condensate size. Reconstitution revealed that membrane recruitment promotes Whi3 condensation under physiological conditions. These assemblies rapidly arrest, resembling size distributions seen in cells. The temporal ordering of molecular interactions and the slow diffusion of membrane-bound complexes can limit condensate size. Our experiments reveal a trade-off between locally enhanced protein concentration at membranes, which favours condensation, and an accompanying reduction in diffusion, which restricts coarsening. Given that many condensates bind endomembranes, we predict that the biophysical properties of lipid bilayers are key for controlling condensate sizes throughout the cell.
  27. Commun Biol. 2022 Apr 13. 5(1): 356
      Although the impact of genome variation on the thermodynamic properties of function on the protein fold has been studied in vitro, it remains a challenge to assign these relationships across the entire polypeptide sequence in vivo. Using the Gaussian process regression based principle of Spatial CoVariance, we globally assign on a residue-by-residue basis the biological thermodynamic properties that contribute to the functional fold of CFTR in the cell. We demonstrate the existence of a thermodynamically sensitive region of the CFTR fold involving the interface between NBD1 and ICL4 that contributes to its export from endoplasmic reticulum. At the cell surface a new set of residues contribute uniquely to the management of channel function. These results support a general 'quality assurance' view of global protein fold management as an SCV principle describing the differential pre- and post-ER residue interactions contributing to compartmentalization of the energetics of the protein fold for function. Our results set the stage for future analyses of the quality systems managing protein sequence-to-function-to-structure broadly encompassing genome design leading to protein function in complex cellular relationships responsible for diversity and fitness in biology in response to the environment.
  28. Autophagy. 2022 Apr 13. 1-19
      Externalization of the phospholipid cardiolipin (CL) to the outer mitochondrial membrane has been proposed to act as a mitophagy trigger. CL would act as a signal for binding the LC3 macroautophagy/autophagy proteins. As yet, the behavior of the LC3-subfamily members has not been directly compared in a detailed way. In the present contribution, an analysis of LC3A, LC3B and LC3C interaction with CL-containing model membranes, and of their ability to translocate to mitochondria, is described. Binding of LC3A to CL was stronger than that of LC3B; both proteins showed a similar ability to colocalize with mitochondria upon induction of CL externalization in SH-SY5Y cells. Besides, the double silencing of LC3A and LC3B proteins was seen to decrease CCCP-induced mitophagy. Residues 14 and 18 located in the N-terminal region of LC3A were shown to be important for its recognition of damaged mitochondria during rotenone- or CCCP-induced mitophagy. Moreover, the in vitro results suggested a possible role of LC3A, but not of LC3B, in oxidized-CL recognition as a counterweight to excessive apoptosis activation. In the case of LC3C, even if this protein showed a stronger CL binding than LC3B or LC3A, the interaction was less specific, and colocalization of LC3C with mitochondria was not rotenone dependent. These results suggest that, at variance with LC3A, LC3C does not participate in cargo recognition during CL-mediated-mitophagy. The data support the notion that the various LC3-subfamily members might play different roles during autophagy initiation, identifying LC3A as a novel stakeholder in CL-mediated mitophagy. Abbreviations: ACTB/β-actin: actin beta; Atg8: autophagy-related 8; CL: cardiolipin; CCCP: carbonyl cyanide m-chlorophenyl hydrazone; DMSO: dimethyl sulfoxide; DOPE: 1,2-dioleoyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphoethanolamine; DTT: DL-dithiothreitol; FKBP8: FKBP prolyl isomerase 8; GABARAP: GABA type A receptor associated protein; GABARAPL1: GABA type A receptor associated protein like 1; GABARAPL2: GABA type A receptor associated protein like 2; GFP: green fluorescent protein; IMM: inner mitochondrial membrane; LUV/LUVs: large unilamellar vesicle/s; MAP1LC3A/LC3A: microtubule associated protein 1 light chain 3 alpha; MAP1LC3B/LC3B: microtubule associated protein 1 light chain 3 beta; MAP1LC3C/LC3C: microtubule associated protein 1 light chain 3 gamma; NME4/NDPK-D/Nm23-H4: NME/NM23 nucleoside diphosphate kinase 4; O/A: oligomycin A + antimycin A; OMM: outer mitochondrial membrane; PA: phosphatidic acid; PC: phosphatidylcholine; PG: phosphatidylglycerol; PINK1: PTEN induced putative kinase 1; PtdIns4P: phosphatidylinositol-4-phosphate; Rho-PE: lissamine rhodamine phosphatidylethanolamine; SUV/SUVs: small unilamellar vesicle/s.
    Keywords:  Atg8; LC3/GABARAP-protein family; autophagosome; autophagy cargo recognition; lipid oxidation; lipid-protein interaction; membrane curvature; mitochondria; negatively charged phospholipids
  29. Cancer Res. 2022 Apr 11. pii: canres.3155.2021. [Epub ahead of print]
      Mitochondria and endoplasmic reticulum (ER) share structural and functional networks and activate well-orchestrated signaling processes to shape cells' fate and function. While persistent ER stress (ERS) response leads to mitochondrial collapse, moderate ERS promotes mitochondrial function. Strategies to boost anti-tumor T-cell function by targeting ER-mitochondria crosstalk have not yet been exploited. Here, we used carbon monoxide (CO), a short-lived gaseous molecule, to test if engaging moderate ERS conditions can improve mitochondrial and anti-tumor functions in T cells. In melanoma antigen-specific T cells, CO-induced transient activation of ERS sensor protein kinase R-like endoplasmic reticulum kinase (PERK) significantly increased anti-tumor T-cell function. Furthermore, CO-induced PERK activation temporarily halted protein translation and induced protective autophagy, including mitophagy. The use of LC3-GFP enabled differentiation between the cells that prepare themselves to undergo active autophagy (LC3-GFPpos) and those that fail to enter the process (LC3-GFPneg). LC3-GFPpos T cells showed strong anti-tumor potential, whereas LC3-GFPneg cells exhibited a T regulatory-like phenotype, harbored dysfunctional mitochondria, and accumulated abnormal metabolite content. These anomalous ratios of metabolites rendered the cells with a hypermethylated state and distinct epigenetic profile, limiting their anti-tumor activity. Overall, this study shows that ERS-activated autophagy pathways modify the mitochondrial function and epigenetically reprogram T cells towards a superior anti-tumor phenotype to achieve robust tumor control.
  30. J Med Chem. 2022 Apr 12.
      Proteolysis targeting chimeras (PROTACs) are molecules that induce protein degradation via formation of ternary complexes between an E3 ubiquitin ligase and a target protein. The rational design of PROTACs requires accurate knowledge of the native configuration of the PROTAC-induced ternary complex. This study demonstrates that native and non-native ternary complex poses can be distinguished based on the pose occupancy time in MD, where native poses exhibit longer occupancy times at both room and higher temperatures. Candidate poses are generated by MD sampling and pre-ranked by classic MM/GBSA. A specific heating scheme is then applied to accelerate ternary pose departure, with the pose occupancy time and fraction being measured. This scoring identifies the native pose in all systems tested. Its success is partially attributed to the dynamic nature of pose departure analyses, which accounts for entropic effects typically neglected in the faster static scoring methods, while entropy plays a greater role in protein-protein than in protein-ligand systems.
  31. Mol Cancer. 2022 Apr 11. 21(1): 99
      Proteolysis-targeting chimeras (PROTACs) are engineered techniques for targeted protein degradation. A bifunctional PROTAC molecule with two covalently-linked ligands recruits target protein and E3 ubiquitin ligase together to trigger proteasomal degradation of target protein by the ubiquitin-proteasome system. PROTAC has emerged as a promising approach for targeted therapy in various diseases, particularly in cancers. In this review, we introduce the principle and development of PROTAC technology, as well as the advantages of PROTACs over traditional anti-cancer therapies. Moreover, we summarize the application of PROTACs in targeting critical oncoproteins, provide the guidelines for the molecular design of PROTACs and discuss the challenges in the targeted degradation by PROTACs.
    Keywords:  PROTAC; Protein degradation; Targeted cancer therapy; Ubiquitin-proteasome system
  32. Cell Stress Chaperones. 2022 Apr 14.
      In yeast, the Slt2(Mpk1) stress-activated protein kinase directs the activation of two transcription factors, Rlm1 and Swi4/Swi6, in response to cell wall stress. Rlm1 is activated through a phosphorylation by Slt2, whereas the Swi4/Swi6 activation is noncatalytic and triggered by the binding of phosphorylated forms of both Slt2 and a catalytically inactive pseudokinase (Mlp1). Previous studies have delineated a role for the molecular chaperone Hsp90 in the activation of Slt2, but the involvement of Hsp90 in these events of catalytic versus non-catalytic cell integrity signaling has remained elusive. In cells lacking Mlp1, the Hsp90 inhibitor radicicol was found to inhibit the Slt2-mediated catalytic activation of Rlm1, but not the noncatalytic activation of Swi4/Swi6. Mutation of residues in the TEY motif of the Slt2 activation loop strongly impacted both Hsp90 binding and Rlm1-mediated transcription. In contrast, many of these same mutations had only modest effects on Swi4/6 (Slt2-mediated, non-catalytic) transcription, although one that blocked both the Slt2:Hsp90 interaction and Rlm1-mediated transcription (E191G) triggered a hyperactivation of Swi4/6. Taken together, our results cement the importance of the Slt2 activation loop for both the binding of Hsp90 by Slt2 and the catalytic activation of cell integrity signaling.
    Keywords:  Hsp90; MAP kinase; Slt2(Mpk1); Transcription activation; Yeast