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is a Gram-positive, pathogenic bacterium and a prominent cause of hospital-acquired diarrhea in the United States. The symptoms of infection are caused by the activity of three large toxins known as toxin A (TcdA), toxin B (TcdB), and the transferase toxin (CDT). Reported here is a 3.8-Å cryo-electron microscopy (cryo-EM) structure of CDT, a bipartite toxin comprised of the proteins CDTa and CDTb. We observe a single molecule of CDTa bound to a CDTb heptamer. The formation of the CDT complex relies on the interaction of an N-terminal adaptor and pseudoenzyme domain of CDTa with six subunits of the CDTb heptamer. CDTb is observed in a preinsertion state, a conformation observed in the transition of prepore to β-barrel pore, although we also observe a single bound CDTa in the prepore and β-barrel conformations of CDTb. The binding interaction appears to prime CDTa for translocation as the adaptor subdomain enters the lumen of the preinsertion state channel. These structural observations advance the understanding of how a single protein, CDTb, can mediate the delivery of a large enzyme, CDTa, into the cytosol of mammalian cells.
The Na-K-Cl cotransporter-1 (NKCC1), by mediating the electroneutral transport of Na , K , and Cl plays an important role in cell volume regulation, epithelial transport, and the control of neuronal excitability. Recently, we reported the first known human mutation in SLC12A2, the gene encoding NKCC1. The 17-year old patient suffers from multiorgan failure. Laboratory tests conducted on muscle and liver biopsies of the patient showed abnormal increase in mitochondrial DNA copy number and increased glycogen levels, indicating the possibility that the transporter may play a role in energy metabolism. Here, we show that fibroblasts isolated from the patient demonstrate a significant increase in mitochondrial respiration, compared to fibroblasts isolated from healthy individuals. Similarly, Madin Darby canine kidney (MDCK) cells transfected with enhanced green fluorescent protein (EGFP)-tagged mutant NKCC1 DNA demonstrated increased mitochondrial respiration when compared to MDCK cells expressing EGFP-tagged wild-type (WT) cotransporter. Direct inhibition of the cotransporter through addition of bumetanide did not change the rate of basal respiration, but led to increased maximal mitochondrial respiration. Fibroblasts extracted from NKCC1 and NKCC1 mice also demonstrated a significant elevation in mitochondrial respiration, compared to fibroblasts isolated from their WT littermates. Expression of the mutant protein was associated with an increase in hydrogen peroxide and peroxidase activity and a decrease in messenger RNA transcript levels for protein involved in the unfolded protein response. These data reveal that cells expressing the mutant cotransporter demonstrate increased mitochondrial respiration and behave like they are experiencing a state of starvation.
© 2020 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
Metazoan retromer (VPS26/VPS35/VPS29) associates with sorting nexins on endosomal tubules to sort proteins to the trans-Golgi network or plasma membrane. Mechanisms of metazoan retromer assembly remain undefined. We combine single-particle cryoelectron microscopy with biophysical methods to uncover multiple oligomer structures. 2D class averages reveal mammalian heterotrimers; dimers of trimers; tetramers of trimers; and flat chains. These species are further supported by biophysical solution studies. We provide reconstructions of all species, including key sub-structures (∼5 Å resolution). Local resolution variation suggests that heterotrimers and dimers adopt multiple conformations. Our structures identify a flexible, highly conserved electrostatic dimeric interface formed by VPS35 subunits. We generate structure-based mutants to disrupt this interface in vitro. Equivalent mutations in yeast demonstrate a mild cargo-sorting defect. Our data suggest the metazoan retromer is an adaptable and plastic scaffold that accommodates interactions with different sorting nexins to sort multiple cargoes from endosomes their final destinations.
Copyright © 2020 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Bronchopulmonary dysplasia (BPD) is a leading complication of preterm birth that affects infants born in the saccular stage of lung development at <32 weeks of gestation. Although the mechanisms driving BPD remain uncertain, exposure to hyperoxia is thought to contribute to disease pathogenesis. To determine the effects of hyperoxia on epithelial-mesenchymal interactions and to define the mediators of activated Wnt/β-catenin signaling after hyperoxia injury. Three hyperoxia models were used: A three-dimensional organotypic coculture using primary human lung cells, precision-cut lung slices (PCLS), and a murine hyperoxia model. Comparisons of normoxia- and hyperoxia-exposed samples were made by real-time quantitative PCR, RNA hybridization, quantitative confocal microscopy, and lung morphometry. Examination of an array of Wnt ligands in the three-dimensional organotypic coculture revealed increased mesenchymal expression of . Inhibition of Wnt5A abrogated the BPD transcriptomic phenotype induced by hyperoxia. In the PCLS model, Wnt5A inhibition improved alveolarization following hyperoxia exposure, and treatment with recombinant Wnt5a reproduced features of the BPD phenotype in PCLS cultured in normoxic conditions. Chemical inhibition of NF-κB with BAY11-7082 reduced expression in the PCLS hyperoxia model and mouse hyperoxia model, with improved alveolarization in the PCLS model. Increased mesenchymal Wnt5A during saccular-stage hyperoxia injury contributes to the impaired alveolarization and septal thickening observed in BPD. Precise targeting of Wnt5A may represent a potential therapeutic strategy for the treatment of BPD.
Calcium-mediated signaling through inositol 1,4,5-triphosphate receptors (IPRs) is essential for the regulation of numerous physiological processes, including fertilization, muscle contraction, apoptosis, secretion, and synaptic plasticity. Deregulation of IPRs leads to pathological calcium signaling and is implicated in many common diseases, including cancer and neurodegenerative, autoimmune, and metabolic diseases. Revealing the mechanism of activation and inhibition of this ion channel will be critical to an improved understanding of the biological processes that are controlled by IPRs. Here, we report structural findings of the human type-3 IPR (IPR-3) obtained by cryo-EM (at an overall resolution of 3.8 Å), revealing an unanticipated regulatory mechanism where a loop distantly located in the primary sequence occupies the IP-binding site and competitively inhibits IP binding. We propose that this inhibitory mechanism must differ qualitatively among IPR subtypes because of their diverse loop sequences, potentially serving as a key molecular determinant of subtype-specific calcium signaling in IPRs. In summary, our structural characterization of human IPR-3 provides critical insights into the mechanistic function of IPRs and into subtype-specific regulation of these important calcium-regulatory channels.
© 2020 Azumaya et al.
Human but not mouse islets transplanted into immunodeficient NSG mice effectively accumulate lipid droplets (LDs). Because chronic lipid exposure is associated with islet β-cell dysfunction, we investigated LD accumulation in the intact human and mouse pancreas over a range of ages and states of diabetes. Very few LDs were found in normal human juvenile pancreatic acinar and islet cells, with numbers subsequently increasing throughout adulthood. While accumulation appeared evenly distributed in postjuvenile acinar and islet cells in donors without diabetes, LDs were enriched in islet α- and β-cells from donors with type 2 diabetes (T2D). LDs were also found in the islet β-like cells produced from human embryonic cell-derived β-cell clusters. In contrast, LD accumulation was nearly undetectable in the adult rodent pancreas, even in hyperglycemic and hyperlipidemic models or 1.5-year-old mice. Taken together, there appear to be significant differences in pancreas islet cell lipid handling between species, and the human juvenile and adult cell populations. Moreover, our results suggest that LD enrichment could be impactful to T2D islet cell function.
© 2019 by the American Diabetes Association.
In the brain, AMPA-type glutamate receptors (AMPARs) form complexes with their auxiliary subunits and mediate the majority of fast excitatory neurotransmission. Signals transduced by these complexes are critical for synaptic plasticity, learning, and memory. The two major categories of AMPAR auxiliary subunits are transmembrane AMPAR regulatory proteins (TARPs) and cornichon homologs (CNIHs); these subunits share little homology and play distinct roles in controlling ion channel gating and trafficking of AMPAR. Here, I report high-resolution cryo-electron microscopy structures of AMPAR in complex with CNIH3. Contrary to its predicted membrane topology, CNIH3 lacks an extracellular domain and instead contains four membrane-spanning helices. The protein-protein interaction interface that dictates channel modulation and the lipids surrounding the complex are revealed. These structures provide insights into the molecular mechanism for ion channel modulation and assembly of AMPAR/CNIH3 complexes.
Copyright © 2019 The Authors, some rights reserved; exclusive licensee American Association for the Advancement of Science. No claim to original U.S. Government Works.
Semiconductor quantum dots (QDs) have demonstrated utility in long-term single particle tracking of membrane proteins in live cells in culture. To extend the superior optical properties of QDs to more physiologically relevant cell platforms, such as acute brain slices, we examine the photophysics of compact ligand-conjugated CdSe/CdS QDs using both ensemble and single particle analysis in brain tissue media. We find that symmetric core passivation is critical for both photostability in oxygenated media and for prolonged single particle imaging in brain slices. We then demonstrate the utility of these QDs by imaging single dopamine transporters in acute brain slices, achieving 20 nm localization precision at 10 Hz frame rates. These findings detail design requirements needed for new QD probes in complex living environments, and open the door to physiologically relevant studies that capture the utility of QD probes in acute brain slices.
Influenza virus neuraminidase (NA) is a major target for small-molecule antiviral drugs. Antibodies targeting the NA surface antigen could also inhibit virus entry and egress to provide host protection. However, our understanding of the nature and range of target epitopes is limited because of a lack of human antibody structures with influenza neuraminidase. Here, we describe crystal and cryogenic electron microscopy (cryo-EM) structures of NAs from human-infecting avian H7N9 viruses in complex with five human anti-N9 antibodies, systematically defining several antigenic sites and antibody epitope footprints. These antibodies either fully or partially block the NA active site or bind to epitopes distant from the active site while still showing neuraminidase inhibition. The inhibition of antibodies to NAs was further analyzed by glycan array and solution-based NA activity assays. Together, these structural studies provide insights into protection by anti-NA antibodies and templates for the development of NA-based influenza virus vaccines and therapeutics.
Copyright © 2019 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
New milestones have been reached in the field of cation-Cl cotransporters with the recently released cryo-electron microscopy (EM) structures of the (zebrafish) Na-K-2Cl cotransporter (NKCC1) and the human K-Cl cotransporter (hKCC1). In this review we provide a brief timeline that identifies the multiple breakthroughs in the field of solute carrier 12 transporters that led to the structure resolution of two of its key members. While cation-Cl cotransporters share the overall architecture of carriers belonging to the amino acid-polyamine-organocation (APC) superfamily and some of their substrate binding sites, several new insights are gained from the two individual structures. A first major feature relates to the largest extracellular domain between transmembrane domain (TMD) 5 and TMD6 of KCC1, which stabilizes the dimer and forms a cap that likely participates in extracellular gating. A second feature is the conservation of the K and Cl binding sites in both structures and evidence of an unexpected second Cl coordination site in the KCC1 structure. Structural data are discussed in the context of previously published studies that examined the basic and kinetics properties of these cotransport mechanisms. A third characteristic is the evidence of an extracellular gate formed by conserved salt bridges between charged residues located toward the end of TMD3 and TMD4 in both transporters and the existence of an additional neighboring bridge in the hKCC1 structure. A fourth feature of these newly solved structures relates to the multiple points of contacts between the monomer forming the cotransporter homodimer units. These involve the TMDs, the COOH-terminal domains, and the large extracellular loop for hKCC1.