Molecular determinants of the binding of various endogenous modulators to transient receptor potential (TRP) channels are crucial for the understanding of necessary cellular pathways, as well as new paths for rational drug designs. The aim of this study was to characterise interactions between the TRP cation channel subfamily melastatin member 4 (TRPM4) and endogenous intracellular modulators—calcium-binding proteins (calmodulin (CaM) and S100A1) and phosphatidylinositol 4, 5-bisphosphate (PIP2). We have found binding epitopes at the N- and C-termini of TRPM4 shared by CaM, S100A1 and PIP2. The binding affinities of short peptides representing the binding epitopes of N- and C-termini were measured by means of fluorescence anisotropy (FA). The importance of representative basic amino acids and their combinations from both peptides for the binding of endogenous TRPM4 modulators was proved using point alanine-scanning mutagenesis. In silico protein–protein docking of both peptides to CaM and S100A1 and extensive molecular dynamics (MD) simulations enabled the description of key stabilising interactions at the atomic level. Recently solved cryo-Electron Microscopy (EM) structures made it possible to put our findings into the context of the entire TRPM4 channel and to deduce how the binding of these endogenous modulators could allosterically affect the gating of TRPM4. Moreover, both identified binding epitopes seem to be ideally positioned to mediate the involvement of TRPM4 in higher-order hetero-multimeric complexes with important physiological functions.
Transient receptor potential (TRPs) channels are crucial downstream targets of calcium signalling cascades. They can be modulated either by calcium itself and/or by calcium-binding proteins (CBPs). Intracellular messengers usually interact with binding domains present at the most variable TRP regions—N- and C-cytoplasmic termini. Calmodulin (CaM) is a calcium-dependent cytosolic protein serving as a modulator of most transmembrane receptors. Although CaM-binding domains are widespread within intracellular parts of TRPs, no such binding domain has been characterised at the TRP melastatin member—the transient receptor potential melastatin 6 (TRPM6) channel. Another CBP, the S100 calcium-binding protein A1 (S100A1), is also known for its modulatory activities towards receptors. S100A1 commonly shares a CaM-binding domain. Here, we present the first identified CaM and S100A1 binding sites at the N-terminal of TRPM6. We have confirmed the L520-R535 N-terminal TRPM6 domain as a shared binding site for CaM and S100A1 using biophysical and molecular modelling methods. A specific domain of basic amino acid residues (R526/R531/K532/R535) present at this TRPM6 domain has been identified as crucial to maintain non-covalent interactions with the ligands. Our data unambiguously confirm that CaM and S100A1 share the same binding domain at the TRPM6 N-terminus although the ligand-binding mechanism is different.
Transient receptor potential melastatin 7 (TRPM7) represents melastatin TRP channel with two significant functions, cation permeability and kinase activity. TRPM7 is widely expressed among tissues and is therefore involved in a variety of cellular functions representing mainly Mg 2þ homeostasis, cellular Ca 2þ flickering, and the regulation of DNA transcription by a cleaved kinase domain translocated to the nucleus. TRPM7 participates in several important biological processes in the nervous and cardiovascular systems. Together with the necessary function of the TRPM7 in these tissues and its recently analyzed overall structure, this channel requires further studies leading to the development of potential therapeutic targets. Here we present the first study investigating the N-termini of TRPM7 with binding regions for important intracellular modulators calmodulin (CaM) and calcium-binding protein S1 (S100A1) using in vitro and in silico approaches. Molecular simulations of the discovered complexes reveal their potential binding interfaces with common interaction patterns and the important role of basic residues present in the N-terminal binding region of TRPM.
Ameloblastin (Ambn) as an intrinsically disordered protein (IDP) stands for an important role in the formation of enamel—the hardest biomineralized tissue commonly formed in vertebrates. The human ameloblastin (AMBN) is expressed in two isoforms: full-length isoform I (AMBN ISO I) and isoform II (AMBN ISO II), which is about 15 amino acid residues shorter than AMBN ISO I. The significant feature of AMBN—its oligomerization ability—is enabled due to a specific sequence encoded by exon 5 present at the N-terminal part in both known isoforms. In this study, we characterized AMBN ISO I and AMBN ISO II by biochemical and biophysical methods to determine their common features and differences. We confirmed that both AMBN ISO I and AMBN ISO II form oligomers in in vitro conditions. Due to an important role of AMBN in biomineralization, we further addressed the calcium (Ca2+)-binding properties of AMBN ISO I and ISO II. The binding properties of AMBN to Ca2+ may explain the role of AMBN in biomineralization and more generally in Ca2+ homeostasis processes.
Melastatin transient receptor potential
(TRPM) channels belong
to one of the most significant subgroups of the transient receptor
potential (TRP) channel family. Here, we studied the TRPM5 member,
the receptor exposed to calcium-mediated activation, resulting in
taste transduction. It is known that most TRP channels are highly
modulated through interactions with extracellular and intracellular
agents. The binding sites for these ligands are usually located at
the intracellular N- and C-termini of the TRP channels, and they can
demonstrate the character of an intrinsically disordered protein (IDP),
which allows such a region to bind various types of molecules. We
explored the N-termini of TRPM5 and found the intracellular regions
for calcium-binding proteins (CBPs) the calmodulin (CaM) and calcium-binding
protein S1 (S100A1) by in vitro binding assays. Furthermore, molecular
docking and molecular dynamics simulations (MDs) of the discovered
complexes confirmed their known common binding interface patterns
and the uniqueness of the basic residues present in the TRPM binding
regions for CaM/S100A1.
Most of the structural proteins known today are composed of domains that carry their own functions while keeping their structural properties. It is supposed that such domains, when taken out of the context of the whole protein, can retain their original structure and function to a certain extent. Information on the specific functional and structural characteristics of individual domains in a new context of artificial fusion proteins may help to reveal the rules of internal and external domain communication. Moreover, this could also help explain the mechanism of such communication and address how the mutual allosteric effect plays a role in a such multi-domain protein system. The simple model system of the two-domain fusion protein investigated in this work consisted of a wellfolded PDZ3 domain and an artificially designed small protein domain called Tryptophan Cage (TrpCage). Two fusion proteins with swapped domain order were designed to study their structural and functional features as well as their biophysical properties. The proteins composed of PDZ3 and TrpCage, both identical in amino acid sequence but different in composition (PDZ3-TrpCage, TrpCage-PDZ3), were studied using circualr dichroism (CD) spectrometry, analytical ultracentrifugation, and molecular dynamic simulations. The biophysical analysis uncovered different structural and denaturation properties of both studied proteins, revealing their different unfolding pathways and dynamics.
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