Cystic fibrosis-associated mutations at arginine 347 alter the pore architecture of CFTR. Evidence for disruption of a salt bridge. (1/4588)

Arginine 347 in the sixth transmembrane domain of cystic fibrosis transmembrane conductance regulator (CFTR) is a site of four cystic fibrosis-associated mutations. To better understand the function of Arg-347 and to learn how mutations at this site disrupt channel activity, we mutated Arg-347 to Asp, Cys, Glu, His, Leu, or Lys and examined single-channel function. Every Arg-347 mutation examined, except R347K, had a destabilizing effect on the pore, causing the channel to flutter between two conductance states. Chloride flow through the larger conductance state was similar to that of wild-type CFTR, suggesting that the residue at position 347 does not interact directly with permeating anions. We hypothesized that Arg-347 stabilizes the channel through an electrostatic interaction with an anionic residue in another transmembrane domain. To test this, we mutated anionic residues (Asp-924, Asp-993, and Glu-1104) to Arg in the context of either R347E or R347D mutations. Interestingly, the D924R mutation complemented R347D, yielding a channel that behaved like wild-type CFTR. These data suggest that Arg-347 plays an important structural role in CFTR, at least in part by forming a salt bridge with Asp-924; cystic fibrosis-associated mutations disrupt this interaction.  (+info)

Electrostatic interactions during activation of coagulation factor IX via the tissue factor pathway: effect of univalent salts. (2/4588)

Interaction between the Gla-domain of coagulation proteins and negatively charged phospholipid membranes is essential for blood coagulation reactions. The interaction is calcium-dependent and mediated both by electrostatic and hydrophobic forces. This report focuses on the electrostatic component of factor IX activation via the extrinsic pathway. Effective charges during the reaction are measured by ionic titration of activity, according to the Debye-Huckel and Gouy-Chapman models. Rates of activation decrease with ionic strength independently of the type of monovalent salt used to control ionic strength. Moreover, the effect of ionic strength decreases at concentrations of charged phospholipid approaching saturation levels, indicating that membrane charges participate directly in the ionic interaction measured. The effective charge on calcium-bound factor IX during activation on phospholipid membranes is 0.95+/-0.1. Possible sites mediating contacts between the Gla-domain and membranes are selected by geometrical criteria in several metal-bound Gla-domain structures. A pocket with a solvent opening-pore of area 24-38 A2 is found in the Gla-domain of factors IX, VII, and prothrombin. The pocket contains atoms with negative partial charges, including carboxylate oxygens from Gla residues, and has a volume of 57-114 A3, sufficient to accommodate additional calcium atoms. These studies demonstrate that electrostatic forces modify the activity coefficient of factor IX during functional interactions and suggest a conserved pocket motif as the contact site between the calcium-bound Gla-domain and charged membranes.  (+info)

An artificial transmembrane segment directs SecA, SecB, and electrochemical potential-dependent translocation of a long amino-terminal tail. (3/4588)

Many integral membrane proteins contain an amino-terminal segment, often referred to as an N-tail, that is translocated across a membrane. In many cases, translocation of the N-tail is initiated by a cleavable, amino-terminal signal peptide. For N-tail proteins lacking a signal peptide, translocation is initiated by a transmembrane segment that is carboxyl to the translocated segment. The mechanism of membrane translocation of these segments, although poorly understood, has been reported to be independent of the protein secretion machinery. In contrast, here we describe alkaline phosphatase mutants containing artificial transmembrane segments that demonstrate that translocation of a long N-tail across the membrane is dependent upon SecA, SecB, and the electrochemical potential in the absence of a signal peptide. The corresponding mutants containing signal peptides also use the secretion machinery but are less sensitive to inhibition of its components. We present evidence that inhibition of SecA by sodium azide is incomplete even at high concentrations of inhibitor, which suggests why SecA-dependent translocation may not have been detected in other systems. Furthermore, by varying the charge around the transmembrane segment, we find that in the absence of a signal peptide, the orientation of the membrane-bound alkaline phosphatase is dictated by the positive inside rule. However, the presence of a signal peptide is an overriding factor in membrane orientation and renders all mutants in an Nout-Cin orientation.  (+info)

Free energy landscapes of encounter complexes in protein-protein association. (4/4588)

We report the computer generation of a high-density map of the thermodynamic properties of the diffusion-accessible encounter conformations of four receptor-ligand protein pairs, and use it to study the electrostatic and desolvation components of the free energy of association. Encounter complex conformations are generated by sampling the translational/rotational space of the ligand around the receptor, both at 5-A and zero surface-to-surface separations. We find that partial desolvation is always an important effect, and it becomes dominant for complexes in which one of the reactants is neutral or weakly charged. The interaction provides a slowly varying attractive force over a small but significant region of the molecular surface. In complexes with no strong charge complementarity this region surrounds the binding site, and the orientation of the ligand in the encounter conformation with the lowest desolvation free energy is similar to the one observed in the fully formed complex. Complexes with strong opposite charges exhibit two types of behavior. In the first group, represented by barnase/barstar, electrostatics exerts strong orientational steering toward the binding site, and desolvation provides some added adhesion within the local region of low electrostatic energy. In the second group, represented by the complex of kallikrein and pancreatic trypsin inhibitor, the overall stability results from the rather nonspecific electrostatic attraction, whereas the affinity toward the binding region is determined by desolvation interactions.  (+info)

Charge pairing of headgroups in phosphatidylcholine membranes: A molecular dynamics simulation study. (5/4588)

Molecular dynamics simulation of the hydrated dimyristoylphosphatidylcholine (DMPC) bilayer membrane in the liquid-crystalline phase was carried out for 5 ns to study the interaction among DMPC headgroups in the membrane/water interface region. The phosphatidylcholine headgroup contains a positively charged choline group and negatively charged phosphate and carbonyl groups, although it is a neutral molecule as a whole. Our previous study (Pasenkiewicz-Gierula, M., Y. Takaoka, H. Miyagawa, K. Kitamura, and A. Kusumi. 1997. J. Phys. Chem. 101:3677-3691) showed the formation of water cross-bridges between negatively charged groups in which a water molecule is simultaneously hydrogen bonded to two DMPC molecules. Water bridges link 76% of DMPC molecules in the membrane. In the present study we show that relatively stable charge associations (charge pairs) are formed between the positively and negatively charged groups of two DMPC molecules. Charge pairs link 93% of DMPC molecules in the membrane. Water bridges and charge pairs together form an extended network of interactions among DMPC headgroups linking 98% of all membrane phospholipids. The average lifetimes of DMPC-DMPC associations via charge pairs, water bridges and both, are at least 730, 1400, and over 1500 ps, respectively. However, these associations are dynamic states and they break and re-form several times during their lifetime.  (+info)

pH-dependent conformational change of gastric mucin leads to sol-gel transition. (6/4588)

We present dynamic light scattering (DLS) and hydrophobic dye-binding data in an effort to elucidate a molecular mechanism for the ability of gastric mucin to form a gel at low pH, which is crucial to the barrier function of gastric mucus. DLS measurements of dilute mucin solutions were not indicative of intermolecular association, yet there was a steady fall in the measured diffusion coefficient with decreasing pH, suggesting an apparent increase in size. Taken together with the observed rise in depolarized scattering ratio with decreasing pH, these results suggest that gastric mucin undergoes a conformational change from a random coil at pH >/= 4 to an anisotropic, extended conformation at pH < 4. The increased binding of mucin to hydrophobic fluorescent with decreasing pH indicates that the change to an extended conformation is accompanied by exposure of hydrophobic binding sites. In concentrated mucin solutions, the structure factor S(q, t) derived from DLS measurements changed from a stretched exponential decay at pH 7 to a power-law decay at pH 2, which is characteristic of a sol-gel transition. We propose that the conformational change facilitates cross-links among mucin macromolecules through hydrophobic interactions at low pH, which in turn leads to a sol-gel transition when the mucin solution is sufficiently concentrated.  (+info)

Selectivity and permeation in calcium release channel of cardiac muscle: alkali metal ions. (7/4588)

Current was measured from single open channels of the calcium release channel (CRC) of cardiac sarcoplasmic reticulum (over the range +/-180 mV) in pure and mixed solutions (e.g., biionic conditions) of the alkali metal ions Li+, K+, Na+, Rb+, Cs+, ranging in concentration from 25 mM to 2 M. The current-voltage (I-V) relations were analyzed by an extension of the Poisson-Nernst-Planck (PNP) formulation of electrodiffusion, which includes local chemical interaction described by an offset in chemical potential, which likely reflects the difference in dehydration/solvation/rehydration energies in the entry/exit steps of permeation. The theory fits all of the data with few adjustable parameters: the diffusion coefficient of each ion species, the average effective charge distribution on the wall of the pore, and an offset in chemical potential for lithium and sodium ions. In particular, the theory explains the discrepancy between "selectivities" defined by conductance sequence and "selectivities" determined by the permeability ratios (i.e., reversal potentials) in biionic conditions. The extended PNP formulation seems to offer a successful combined treatment of selectivity and permeation. Conductance selectivity in this channel arises mostly from friction: different species of ions have different diffusion coefficients in the channel. Permeability selectivity of an ion is determined by its electrochemical potential gradient and local chemical interaction with the channel. Neither selectivity (in CRC) seems to involve different electrostatic interaction of different ions with the channel protein, even though the ions have widely varying diameters.  (+info)

Adhesion energy of receptor-mediated interaction measured by elastic deformation. (8/4588)

We investigated the role of receptor binding affinity in surface adhesion. A sensitive technique was developed to measure the surface energy of receptor-mediated adhesion. The experimental system involved a functionalized elastic agarose bead resting on a functionalized glass coverslip. Attractive intersurface forces pulled the two surfaces together, deforming the bead to produce an enlarged contact area. The Johnson-Kendall-Roberts (JKR) model was used to relate the surface energy of the interaction to the elasticity of the bead and the area of contact. The surface energies for different combinations of modified surfaces in solution were obtained from reflection interference contrast microscopy (RICM) measurements of the contact area formed by the bead and the coverslip. Studies with surfaces functionalized with ligand-receptor pairs showed that the relationship between surface energy and the association constant of the ligand binding has two regimes. At low binding affinity, surface energy increased linearly with the association constant, while surface energy increased logarithmically with the association constant in the high affinity regime.  (+info)