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In various polymerization processes, the formation of a wide variety of chains, not only in length but also in chemical composition, broadly complicates comprehensive polymer characterization. In this communication, we compare different stationary and mobile phases for the analysis of complex polymer mixtures via size-exclusion chromatography-mass spectrometry (SEC-MS). To the best of our knowledge, we report novel chromatographic effects for the separation of linear and cyclic oligomers for polyesters (PE) and polyurethanes (PUR). A complete separation for the different structures was achieved for both polymer types with a single-solvent system (acetonitrile, ACN) and without extensive optimization. Additionally, cyclic species were found to show an inverse elution profile compared to their linear counterparts, suggesting distinct physical properties between species.
SMARCAL1, a DNA remodeling protein fundamental to genome integrity during replication, is the only gene associated with the developmental disorder Schimke immuno-osseous dysplasia (SIOD). SMARCAL1-deficient cells show collapsed replication forks, S-phase cell cycle arrest, increased chromosomal breaks, hypersensitivity to genotoxic agents, and chromosomal instability. The SMARCAL1 catalytic domain (SMARCAL1(CD)) is composed of an SNF2-type double-stranded DNA motor ATPase fused to a HARP domain of unknown function. The mechanisms by which SMARCAL1 and other DNA translocases repair replication forks are poorly understood, in part because of a lack of structural information on the domains outside of the common ATPase motor. In the present work, we determined the crystal structure of the SMARCAL1 HARP domain and examined its conformation and assembly in solution by small angle X-ray scattering. We report that this domain is conserved with the DNA mismatch and damage recognition domains of MutS/MSH and NER helicase XPB, respectively, as well as with the putative DNA specificity motif of the T4 phage fork regression protein UvsW. Loss of UvsW fork regression activity by deletion of this domain was rescued by its replacement with HARP, establishing the importance of this domain in UvsW and demonstrating a functional complementarity between these structurally homologous domains. Mutation of predicted DNA-binding residues in HARP dramatically reduced fork binding and regression activities of SMARCAL1(CD). Thus, this work has uncovered a conserved substrate recognition domain in DNA repair enzymes that couples ATP-hydrolysis to remodeling of a variety of DNA structures, and provides insight into this domain's role in replication fork stability and genome integrity.
Type IIA topoisomerases control DNA supercoiling and disentangle chromosomes through a complex ATP-dependent strand-passage mechanism. Although a general framework exists for type IIA topoisomerase function, the architecture of the full-length enzyme has remained undefined. Here we present the structure of a fully catalytic Saccharomyces cerevisiae topoisomerase II homodimer complexed with DNA and a nonhydrolyzable ATP analog. The enzyme adopts a domain-swapped configuration wherein the ATPase domain of one protomer sits atop the nucleolytic region of its partner subunit. This organization produces an unexpected interaction between bound DNA and a conformational transducing element in the ATPase domain, which we show is critical for both DNA-stimulated ATP hydrolysis and global topoisomerase activity. Our data indicate that the ATPase domains pivot about each other to ensure unidirectional strand passage and that this state senses bound DNA to promote ATP turnover and enzyme reset.
Ion channels operate in intact tissues as part of large macromolecular complexes that can include cytoskeletal proteins, scaffolding proteins, signaling molecules, and a litany of other molecules. The proteins that make up these complexes can influence the trafficking, localization, and biophysical properties of the channel. TRIP8b (tetratricopetide repeat-containing Rab8b-interacting protein) is a recently discovered accessory subunit of hyperpolarization-activated cyclic nucleotide-gated (HCN) channels that contributes to the substantial dendritic localization of HCN channels in many types of neurons. TRIP8b interacts with the carboxyl-terminal region of HCN channels and regulates their cell-surface expression level and cyclic nucleotide dependence. Here we examine the molecular determinants of TRIP8b binding to HCN2 channels. Using a single-molecule fluorescence bleaching method, we found that TRIP8b and HCN2 form an obligate 4:4 complex in intact channels. Fluorescence-detection size-exclusion chromatography and fluorescence anisotropy allowed us to confirm that two different domains in the carboxyl-terminal portion of TRIP8b--the tetratricopepide repeat region and the TRIP8b conserved region--interact with two different regions of the HCN carboxyl-terminal region: the carboxyl-terminal three amino acids (SNL) and the cyclic nucleotide-binding domain, respectively. And finally, using X-ray crystallography, we determined the atomic structure of the tetratricopepide region of TRIP8b in complex with a peptide of the carboxy-terminus of HCN2. Together, these experiments begin to uncover the mechanism for TRIP8b binding and regulation of HCN channels.
The integrity and propagation of the genome depend upon the fidelity of DNA processing events, such as replication, damage recognition, and repair. Requisite to the numerous biochemical tasks required for DNA processing is the generation and manipulation of single-stranded DNA (ssDNA). As the primary eukaryotic ssDNA-binding protein, Replication Protein A (RPA) protects ssDNA templates from stray nuclease cleavage and untimely reannealment. More importantly, RPA also serves as a platform for organizing access to ssDNA for readout of the genetic code, recognition of aberrations in DNA, and processing by enzymes. We have proposed that RPA's ability to adapt to such a broad spectrum of multiprotein machinery arises in part from its modular organization and interdomain flexibility. While requisite for function, RPA's modular flexibility has presented many challenges to providing a detailed characterization of the dynamic architecture of the full-length protein. To enable the study of RPA's interdomain dynamics and responses to ssDNA binding by biophysical methods including NMR spectroscopy, we have successfully produced recombinant full-length RPA in milligram quantities at natural abundance and enriched with NMR-active isotopes.
Epithelial cells in the proximal tubule of the kidney reclaim and metabolize protein from the glomerular filtrate. Proteinuria, an overabundance of protein in the urine, affects tubular cell function and is a major factor in the progression of chronic kidney disease. By developing experimental systems to study tubular protein handling in a setting that simulates some of the environmental conditions of the kidney tubule in vivo, we can better understand how microenviromental conditions affect cellular protein handling to determine if these conditions are relevant in disease. To this end, we used two in vitro microfluidic models to evaluate albumin handling by renal proximal tubule cells. For the first system, cells were grown in a microfluidic channel and perfused with physiological levels of shear stress to evaluate the effect of mechanical stress on protein uptake. In the second system, a porous membrane was used to separate an apical and basolateral compartment to evaluate the fate of protein following cellular metabolism. Opossum kidney (OK) epithelial cells were exposed to fluorescently labeled albumin, and cellular uptake was determined by measuring the fluorescence of cell lysates. Confocal fluorescence microscopy was used to compare uptake in cells grown under flow and static conditions. Albumin processed by the cells was examined by size exclusion chromatography (SEC) and SDS-PAGE. Results showed that cellular uptake and/or degradation was significantly increased in cells exposed to flow compared to static conditions. This was confirmed by confocal microscopy. Size exclusion chromatography and SDS-PAGE showed that albumin was broken down into small molecular weight fragments and excreted by the cells. No trace of intact albumin was detectable by either SEC or SDS-PAGE. These results indicate that fluid shear stress is an important factor mediating cellular protein handling, and the microfluidic bioreactor provides a novel tool to investigate this process.
Copyright © 2011 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
Methylation of lysine residues in histones has been known to serve a regulatory role in gene expression. Although enzymatic removal of the methyl groups was discovered as early as 1973, the enzymes responsible for their removal were isolated and their mechanism of action was described only recently. The first enzyme to show such activity was LSD1, a flavin-containing enzyme that removes the methyl groups from lysines 4 and 9 of histone 3 with the generation of formaldehyde from the methyl group. This reaction is similar to the previously described demethylation reactions conducted by the enzymes dimethylglycine dehydrogenase and sarcosine dehydrogenase, in which protein-bound tetrahydrofolate serves as an accepter of the formaldehyde that is generated. We now show that nuclear extracts of HeLa cells contain LSD1 that is associated with folate. Using the method of back-scattering interferometry, we have measured the binding of various forms of folate to both full-length LSD1 and a truncated form of LSD1 in free solution. The 6R,S form of the natural pentaglutamate form of tetrahydrofolate bound with the highest affinity (K(d) = 2.8 μM) to full-length LSD1. The fact that folate participates in the enzymatic demethylation of histones provides an opportunity for this micronutrient to play a role in the epigenetic control of gene expression.
An efficient enzymatic synthesis of 6-chloropurine-2'-deoxyriboside from the reaction of 6-chloropurine with 2'-deoxycytidine catalyzed by nucleoside-2'-deoxyribosyltransferase (E.C. 18.104.22.168) followed by chemical conversion into the 5'-dimethoxytrityl 3'-(2-cyanoethyl-N,N-diisopropylamino) phosphoramidite derivative is described. The phosphoramidite derivative was incorporated site-specifically into an oligonucleotide and used for the introduction of a tethered tetramethylrhodamine-cadaverine conjugate. The availability of an efficient route to 6-chloropurine-2'-deoxyriboside 5'-dimethoxytrityl 3'-(2-cyanoethyl-N,N-diisopropylamino)phosphoramidite enables the facile synthesis of oligonucleotides containing a range of functional groups tethered to deoxyadenosine residues.
It is expected that the attendant structural heterogeneity of human high-density lipoprotein (HDL) complexes is a determinant of its varied metabolic functions. To determine the structural heterogeneity of HDL, we determined major apolipoprotein stoichiometry profiles in human HDL. First, HDL was separated into two main populations, with and without apolipoprotein (apo) A-II, LpA-I and LpA-I/A-II, respectively. Each main population was further separated into six individual subfractions using size exclusion chromatography (SEC). Protein proximity profiles (PPPs) of major apolipoproteins in each individual subfraction was determined by optimally cross-linking apolipoproteins within individual particles with bis(sulfosuccinimidyl) suberate (BS(3)), a bifunctional cross-linker, followed by molecular mass determination by MALDI-MS. The PPPs of LpA-I subfractions indicated that the number of apoA-I molecules increased from two to three to four with an increase in the LpA-I particle size. On the other hand, the entire population of LpA-I/A-II demonstrated the presence of only two proximal apoA-I molecules per particle, while the number of apoA-II molecules varied from one dimeric apoA-II to two and then to three. For most of the PPPs described above, an additional population that contained a single molecule of apoC-III in addition to apoA-I and/or apoA-II was detected. Upon composition analyses of individual subpopulations, LpA-I/A-II exhibited comparable proportions for total protein (∼58%), phospholipids (∼21%), total cholesterol (∼16%), triglycerides (∼5%), and free cholesterol (∼4%) across subfractions. LpA-I components, on the other hand, showed significant variability. This novel information about HDL subfractions will form a basis for an improved understanding of particle-specific functions of HDL.
The physiology of glomerular permselectivity remains mechanistically obscure, despite its importance in human disease. Although electrical contributions to glomerular permselectivity have long been considered important, two recent reports demonstrated enhanced glomerular permeability to anionic versus neutral polysaccharides. The interpretation of these observations is complicated by confounding of the effects of chemical modification on charge with effects on size and shape. In this report, neutral and anionic Ficoll are characterized by size-exclusion chromatography with online light scattering and viscometry and filtration through a highly defined anionic filtration membrane. Neutral and carboxymethylated Ficoll are nearly identical in size and conformation, yet carboxymethylated Ficoll is retained by an anionic membrane in excess of neutral Ficoll. This suggests that comparisons between clearances of neutral and carboxymethylated Ficoll may be a sensitive probe of electrostatic interactions independent of size and conformation.