Munc18-1 binds directly to the neuronal SNARE complex.
ABSTRACT: Both SM proteins (for Sec1/Munc18-like proteins) and SNARE proteins (for soluble NSF-attachment protein receptors) are essential for intracellular membrane fusion, but the general mechanism of coupling between their functions is unclear, in part because diverse SM protein/SNARE binding modes have been described. During synaptic vesicle exocytosis, the SM protein Munc18-1 is known to bind tightly to the SNARE protein syntaxin-1, but only when syntaxin-1 is in a closed conformation that is incompatible with SNARE complex formation. We now show that Munc18-1 also binds tightly to assembled SNARE complexes containing syntaxin-1. The newly discovered Munc18-1/SNARE complex interaction involves contacts of Munc18-1 with the N-terminal H(abc) domain of syntaxin-1 and the four-helical bundle of the assembled SNARE complex. Together with earlier studies, our results suggest that binding of Munc18-1 to closed syntaxin-1 is a specialization that evolved to meet the strict regulatory requirements of neuronal exocytosis, whereas binding of Munc18-1 to assembled SNARE complexes reflects a general function of SM proteins involved in executing membrane fusion.
Project description:Neuronal communication relies on the fusion of neurotransmitter-containing vesicles with the plasma membrane. The soluble N-ethylmaleimide-sensitive fusion protein attachment protein receptor (SNARE) proteins initiate membrane fusion through the formation of the SNARE complex, a process tightly regulated by Sec1/Munc18-1 (SM) proteins. The emerging trend is that SM proteins promote SNARE-mediated membrane fusion by binding to a Syntaxin N-terminal motif. Here we report that mutations in the hydrophobic pocket of Munc18-1 (F115E and E132A), predicted to disrupt the N-terminal Sx1a interaction have a modest effect on binding to Sx1a in its free state, but abolish binding to the SNARE complex. Overexpression of the Munc18-1 mutant in PC12 cells lacking Munc18-1 rescues both neuroexocytosis and the plasma membrane localization of Syntaxin. However, total internal reflection fluorescence microscopy analysis reveals that expression of a Munc18-1 double mutant reduces the rate of vesicle fusion, an effect only detectable at the onset of stimulation. The Munc18-1 hydrophobic pocket is therefore critical for SNARE complex binding. However, mutations abrogating this interaction have a limited impact on Ca(2+)-dependent exocytosis in PC12 cells.
Project description:Sec1/Munc18-family (SM) proteins are required for SNARE-mediated membrane fusion, but their mechanism(s) of action remain controversial. Using single-molecule force spectroscopy, we found that the SM protein Munc18-1 catalyzes step-wise zippering of three synaptic SNAREs (syntaxin, VAMP2, and SNAP-25) into a four-helix bundle. Catalysis requires formation of an intermediate template complex in which Munc18-1 juxtaposes the N-terminal regions of the SNARE motifs of syntaxin and VAMP2, while keeping their C-terminal regions separated. SNAP-25 binds the templated SNAREs to induce full SNARE zippering. Munc18-1 mutations modulate the stability of the template complex in a manner consistent with their effects on membrane fusion, indicating that chaperoned SNARE assembly is essential for exocytosis. Two other SM proteins, Munc18-3 and Vps33, similarly chaperone SNARE assembly via a template complex, suggesting that SM protein mechanism is conserved.
Project description:Sec1Munc18-like (SM) proteins functionally interact with soluble N-ethylmaleimide-sensitive factor attachment protein receptors (SNARE) in membrane fusion, but the mechanisms of these interactions differ. In vertebrates, SM proteins that mediate exocytosis (Munc18-1, 18-2, and 18c) bind to the closed conformation of syntaxins 1-4, which requires the N-terminal H(abc) domains and SNARE motifs of these syntaxins. In contrast, SM proteins that mediate Golgi and endoplasmic reticulum fusion (Sly1 and Vps45) bind only to short N-terminal sequences of syntaxins 5, 16, or 18, independently of their H(abc) domains and SNARE motifs. We now show that Munc18-1, Sly1, and Vps45 interact with cognate syntaxins via similar, autonomously folded N-terminal domains, but the syntaxin 5-binding surface of the Sly1 N-terminal domain is opposite to the syntaxin 1-binding surface of the Munc18-1 N-terminal domain. In transfected cells, the N-terminal domain of Sly1 specifically disrupts the structure of the Golgi complex, supporting the notion that the interaction of Sly1 with syntaxin 5 is essential for fusion. These data, together with previous results, suggest that a relatively small N-terminal domain of SM proteins is dedicated to mechanistically distinct interactions with SNAREs, leaving the remaining large parts of SM proteins free to execute their as yet unknown function as effector domains.
Project description:The membrane fusion necessary for vesicle trafficking is driven by the assembly of heterologous SNARE proteins orchestrated by the binding of Sec1/Munc18 (SM) proteins to specific syntaxin SNARE proteins. However, the precise mode of interaction between SM proteins and SNAREs is debated, as contrasting binding modes have been found for different members of the SM protein family, including the three vertebrate Munc18 isoforms. While different binding modes could be necessary, given their roles in different secretory processes in different tissues, the structural similarity of the three isoforms makes this divergence perplexing. Although the neuronal isoform Munc18a is well-established to bind tightly to both the closed conformation and the N-peptide of syntaxin 1a, thereby inhibiting SNARE complex formation, Munc18b and -c, which have a more widespread distribution, are reported to mainly interact with the N-peptide of their partnering syntaxins and are thought to instead promote SNARE complex formation. We have reinvestigated the interaction between Munc18c and syntaxin 4 (Syx4). Using isothermal titration calorimetry, we found that Munc18c, like Munc18a, binds to both the closed conformation and the N-peptide of Syx4. Furthermore, using a novel kinetic approach, we found that Munc18c, like Munc18a, slows down SNARE complex formation through high-affinity binding to syntaxin. This strongly suggests that secretory Munc18s in general control the accessibility of the bound syntaxin, probably preparing it for SNARE complex assembly.
Project description:Sec1/Munc18 (SM) proteins promote intracellular vesicle fusion by binding to N-ethylmaleimide-sensitive factor attachment protein receptors (SNAREs). A key SNARE-binding mode of SM proteins involves the N-terminal peptide (N-peptide) motif of syntaxin, a SNARE subunit localized to the target membrane. In in vitro membrane fusion assays, inhibition of N-peptide motif binding previously has been shown to abrogate the stimulatory function of Munc18-1, a SM protein involved in synaptic exocytosis in neurons. The physiological role of the N-peptide-binding mode, however, remains unclear. In this work, we addressed this key question using a "clogged" Munc18-1 protein, in which an ectopic copy of the syntaxin N-peptide motif was directly fused to Munc18-1. We found that the ectopic N-peptide motif blocks the N-peptide-binding pocket of Munc18-1, preventing the latter from binding to the native N-peptide motif on syntaxin-1. In a reconstituted system, we observed that clogged Munc18-1 is defective in promoting SNARE zippering. When introduced into induced neuronal cells (iN cells) derived from human pluripotent stem cells, clogged Munc18-1 failed to mediate synaptic exocytosis. As a result, both spontaneous and evoked synaptic transmission was abolished. These genetic findings provide direct evidence for the crucial role of the N-peptide-binding mode of Munc18-1 in synaptic exocytosis. We suggest that clogged SM proteins will also be instrumental in defining the physiological roles of the N-peptide-binding mode in other vesicle-fusion pathways.
Project description:Sec1/Munc18 (SM) family proteins are essential for every vesicle fusion pathway. The best-characterized SM protein is the synaptic factor Munc18-1, but it remains unclear whether its functions represent conserved mechanisms of SM proteins or specialized activities in neurotransmitter release. To address this question, we dissected Munc18c, a functionally distinct SM protein involved in nonsynaptic exocytic pathways. We discovered that Munc18c binds to the trans-SNARE (soluble N-ethylmaleimide-sensitive factor attachment protein receptor) complex and strongly accelerates the fusion rate. Further analysis suggests that Munc18c recognizes both vesicle-rooted SNARE and target membrane-associated SNAREs, and promotes trans-SNARE zippering at the postdocking stage of the fusion reaction. The stimulation of fusion by Munc18c is specific to its cognate SNARE isoforms. Because Munc18-1 regulates fusion in a similar manner, we conclude that one conserved function of SM proteins is to bind their cognate trans-SNARE complexes and accelerate fusion kinetics. Munc18c also binds syntaxin-4 monomer but does not block target membrane-associated SNARE assembly, in agreement with our observation that six- to eightfold increases in Munc18c expression do not inhibit insulin-stimulated glucose uptake in adipocytes. Thus, the inhibitory "closed" syntaxin binding mode demonstrated for Munc18-1 is not conserved in Munc18c. Unexpectedly, we found that Munc18c recognizes the N-terminal region of the vesicle-rooted SNARE, whereas Munc18-1 requires the C-terminal sequences, suggesting that the architecture of the SNARE/SM complex likely differs across fusion pathways. Together, these comparative studies of two distinct SM proteins reveal conserved as well as divergent mechanisms of SM family proteins in intracellular vesicle fusion.
Project description:Fusion of intracellular trafficking vesicles is mediated by the assembly of SNARE proteins into membrane-bridging complexes. SNARE-mediated membrane fusion requires Sec1/Munc18-family (SM) proteins, SNARE chaperones that can function as templates to catalyze SNARE complex assembly. Paradoxically, the SM protein Munc18-1 traps the Qa-SNARE protein syntaxin-1 in an autoinhibited closed conformation. Here we present the structure of a second SM-Qa-SNARE complex, Vps45-Tlg2. Strikingly, Vps45 holds Tlg2 in an open conformation, with its SNARE motif disengaged from its Habc domain and its linker region unfolded. The domain 3a helical hairpin of Vps45 is unfurled, exposing the presumptive R-SNARE binding site to allow template complex formation. Although Tlg2 has a pronounced tendency to form homo-tetramers, Vps45 can rescue Tlg2 tetramers into stoichiometric Vps45-Tlg2 complexes. Our findings demonstrate that SM proteins can engage Qa-SNAREs using at least two different modes, one in which the SNARE is closed and one in which it is open.
Project description:Neuronal exocytosis is mediated by SNARE proteins, which assemble into a highly stable four-helical bundle in a process that is not well understood. Here, electron paramagnetic resonance spectroscopy was used to examine how the t-SNAREs syntaxin and SNAP25 assemble in the presence and absence of the regulatory protein Munc18-1. Syntaxin and SNAP25 form a 2:1 complex, which is structurally heterogeneous and persists in the presence of excess SNAP25. Munc18-1 dissociates this 2:1 complex, but a 1:1 complex is retained where syntaxin is in a closed state. In the absence of an N-terminal fragment of syntaxin, Munc18-1 also stabilizes a 1:1 complex of sytaxin/SNAP25; however, syntaxin now samples an open state. These data demonstrate that the open-closed syntaxin equilibrium is shifted toward the open state when syntaxin and Munc18-1 are associated with SNAP25, and the results indicate that a syntaxin/SNAP25:Munc18-1 complex is a likely starting point for SNARE assembly.
Project description:Attenuated levels of the Sec1/Munc18 (SM) protein Munc18-1 in human islet ?-cells is coincident with type 2 diabetes, although how Munc18-1 facilitates insulin secretion remains enigmatic. Herein, using conventional Munc18-1(+/-) and ?-cell specific Munc18-1(-/-) knock-out mice, we establish that Munc18-1 is required for the first phase of insulin secretion. Conversely, human islets expressing elevated levels of Munc18-1 elicited significant potentiation of only first-phase insulin release. Insulin secretory changes positively correlated with insulin granule number at the plasma membrane: Munc18-1-deficient cells lacked 35% of the normal component of pre-docked insulin secretory granules, whereas cells with elevated levels of Munc18-1 exhibited a ?20% increase in pre-docked granule number. Pre-docked syntaxin 1-based SNARE complexes bound by Munc18-1 were detected in ?-cell lysates but, surprisingly, were reduced by elevation of Munc18-1 levels. Paradoxically, elevated Munc18-1 levels coincided with increased binding of syntaxin 4 to VAMP2 at the plasma membrane. Accordingly, syntaxin 4 was a requisite for Munc18-1 potentiation of insulin release. Munc18c, the cognate SM isoform for syntaxin 4, failed to bind SNARE complexes. Given that Munc18-1 does not pair with syntaxin 4, these data suggest a novel indirect role for Munc18-1 in facilitating syntaxin 4-mediated granule pre-docking to support first-phase insulin exocytosis.
Project description:A critical aspect of haemostasis is the release of clot-forming components from the three intra-platelet stores: dense-core granules, alpha granules and lysosomes. Exocytosis from these granules is mediated by soluble proteins [N-ethylmaleimide-sensitive fusion protein (NSF) and soluble NSF attachment proteins (SNAPs)] and integral membrane proteins [vesicle and target SNAP receptors (v- and t-SNAREs)]. Three Sec1/Munc18 proteins (SM proteins) are present in platelets (Munc18a, Munc18b and Munc18c) and they bind to and potentially regulate specific syntaxin t-SNAREs. In resting platelets, these SM proteins associate with granules and open canalicular system membranes predominantly but not with the plasma membrane. Munc18a binds to syntaxin 2 alone and does not associate with other members of the core SNARE complex. Munc18b associates with a larger complex that contains synaptosome-associated protein of 23 kDa (SNAP-23) and cellubrevin/vesicle-associated membrane protein 3. Munc18c associates with both syntaxins 2 and 4, with synaptosome-associated protein of 23 kDa (SNAP-23) and with a v-SNARE. On stimulation, most of the platelet SM proteins are still found in membrane fractions. Phosphorylation of each Munc18 increases in thrombin-treated cells and phosphorylated Munc18c remains associated with syntaxins 2 and 4, but its affinity for the SNAREs appears to be reduced. To determine the functional role of the platelet SM proteins, we examined the effects of Munc18-based peptides (Munc18a peptide 3 and Munc18c peptide 3). Addition of the peptides to permeabilized platelets inhibits secretion from all three platelet granules. These peptides also inhibit agonist-induced aggregation in saponin-permeabilized platelets. These studies demonstrate a clear role for SM proteins in platelet exocytosis and aggregation and suggest a dominant role for Munc18c in all three granule-release events.