Efficient digestion and mass spectral analysis of vesicular glutamate transporter 1: a recombinant membrane protein expressed in yeast.
ABSTRACT: Attempts to characterize recombinant integral membrane proteins (IMPs) by mass spectrometry are frequently hindered by several factors including the detergents required for extraction and purification that interferes with analysis, poor solubility, incomplete digestion, and limited identification of the transmembrane domain-spanning peptides. The goal of this study was to examine and develop methods for purification of an IMP that are amenable to downstream digestion of the protein and peptide analysis by mass spectrometry. In this study, we have overexpressed a candidate IMP, the vesicular glutamate transporter 1 (VGLUT1) in Pichia pastoris and examined conditions for the efficient affinity purification, in-solution digestion, and analysis of the protein. Analysis of the intact purified protein without detergent was performed by MALDI-TOF mass spectrometry. The purified IMP was digested with trypsin, and the resulting peptides were identified. A method that utilizes differential solubility and ionization properties of hydrophobic and hydrophilic peptides was developed. Large hydrophobic peptides were only detected in solutions containing 50% formic acid. Ionization of hydrophilic peptides was suppressed in formic acid, but they produced a strong signal in 50% acetonitrile. Eighty-seven percent sequence coverage of the protein was obtained with only one large hydrophobic peptide that remained unidentified. The results demonstrate a simple method to purify and digest a recombinant IMP for analysis by mass spectrometry.
Project description:The complete amino acid sequence of a structural protein, protein 8, isolated from the pharate cuticle of the locust Locusta migratoria was determined. Protein 8 contains 148 amino acid residues and has an Mr of 15,224. By the extensive use of information obtained by plasma-desorption mass spectrometry (p.d.m.s.) it was possible to reduce the need for conventional sequence determination and to improve the reliability of the results. On the basis of the determined Mr of the intact protein all the peptides that constitute the complete sequence could be isolated from a time-course enzymic digestion. The isolated peptides were sequenced by using a combination of Edman degradation and carboxypeptidase digestion monitored by p.d.m.s. The alignment of the peptides was established from the time-course digestion and further verified by a second enzymic digestion. The primary structure of the protein consists of two hydrophilic and two hydrophobic regions. The hydrophobic regions are enriched in alanine, valine and proline and dominated by a repetitive sequence Ala-Ala-Pro-(Ala/Val). The sequence strengthens the view that the cuticle proteins belong to a unique family of structural proteins.
Project description:The identification and quantification of specific phosphorylation sites within a protein by mass spectrometry has proved challenging when measured from peptides after protein digestion because each peptide has a unique ionization efficiency that alters with modification, such as phosphorylation, and because phosphorylation can alter cleavage by trypsin, shifting peptide distribution. In addition, some phosphorylated peptides generated by tryptic digest are small and hydrophilic and, thus, are not retained well on commonly used C18 columns. We have developed a novel C-terminal peptide (2)H-labeling derivatization strategy and a mass balance approach to quantify phosphorylation. We illustrate the application of our method using electrospray ionization liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry by quantifying phosphorylation of troponin I with protein kinase A and protein kinase C. The method also improves the retention and elution of hydrophilic peptides. The method defines phosphorylation without having to measure the phosphorylated peptides directly or being affected by variable miscleavage. Measurement of phosphorylation is shown to be linear (relative standard error <5%) with a detection limit of <10%.
Project description:Cysteine (Cys) oxidation is a crucial post-translational modification (PTM) associated with redox signaling and oxidative stress. As Cys is highly reactive to oxidants it forms a range of post-translational modifications, some that are biologically reversible (e.g. disulfides, Cys sulfenic acid) and others (Cys sulfinic [Cys-SO2H] and sulfonic [Cys-SO3H] acids) that are considered "irreversible." We developed an enrichment method to isolate Cys-SO2H/SO3H-containing peptides from complex tissue lysates that is compatible with tandem mass spectrometry (MS/MS). The acidity of these post-translational modification (pKa Cys-SO3H < 0) creates a unique charge distribution when localized on tryptic peptides at acidic pH that can be utilized for their purification. The method is based on electrostatic repulsion of Cys-SO2H/SO3H-containing peptides from cationic resins (i.e. "negative" selection) followed by "positive" selection using hydrophilic interaction liquid chromatography. Modification of strong cation exchange protocols decreased the complexity of initial flowthrough fractions by allowing for hydrophobic retention of neutral peptides. Coupling of strong cation exchange and hydrophilic interaction liquid chromatography allowed for increased enrichment of Cys-SO2H/SO3H (up to 80%) from other modified peptides. We identified 181 Cys-SO2H/SO3H sites from rat myocardial tissue subjected to physiologically relevant concentrations of H2O2 (<100 ?m) or to ischemia/reperfusion (I/R) injury via Langendorff perfusion. I/R significantly increased Cys-SO2H/SO3H-modified peptides from proteins involved in energy utilization and contractility, as well as those involved in oxidative damage and repair.
Project description:Elevated chromatographic temperatures are well recognized to provide beneficial analytical effects. Previously, we demonstrated that elevated chromatographic temperature enhances the identification of hydrophobic peptides from enriched membrane samples. Here, we quantitatively assess and compare the recovery of peptide analytes from both simple and complex tryptic peptide matrices using selected reaction monitoring (SRM) mass spectrometry. Our study demonstrates that elevated chromatographic temperature results in significant improvements in the magnitude of peptide recovery for both hydrophilic and hydrophobic peptides from both simple and complex peptide matrices. Importantly, the analytical benefits for quantitative measurements in mouse whole brain matrix are highlighted, suggesting broad utility in the proteomic analyses of complex mammalian tissues. Any improvement in peptide recovery from chromatographic separations translates directly to the apparent sensitivity of downstream mass analysis in microcapillary liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry (muLC-MS) based proteomic applications. Therefore, the incorporation of elevated chromatographic temperatures should result in significant improvements in peptide quantification as well as detection and identification.
Project description:Plant transmembrane proteins (TMPs) are essential for normal cellular homeostasis, nutrient exchange, and responses to environmental cues. Commonly used bottom-up proteomic approaches fail to identify a broad coverage of peptide fragments derived from TMPs. Here, we used mass spectrometry (MS) to compare the effectiveness of two solubilization and protein cleavage methods to identify shoot-derived TMPs from the legume <i>Medicago.</i> We compared a urea solubilization, trypsin Lys-C (UR-TLC) cleavage method to a formic acid solubilization, cyanogen bromide and trypsin Lys-C (FA-CTLC) cleavage method. We assessed the effectiveness of these methods by (i) comparing total protein identifications, (ii) determining how many TMPs were identified, and (iii) defining how many peptides incorporate all, or part, of transmembrane domains (TMD) sequences. The results show that the FA-CTLC method identified nine-fold more TMDs, and enriched more hydrophobic TMPs than the UR-TLC method. FA-CTLC identified more TMPs, particularly transporters, whereas UR-TLC preferentially identified TMPs with one TMD, particularly signaling proteins. The results suggest that combining plant membrane purification techniques with both the FA-CTLC and UR-TLC methods will achieve a more complete identification and coverage of TMPs.
Project description:BACKGROUND: MALDI-TOF-MS has become an important analytical tool in the identification of proteins and evaluation of their role in biological processes. A typical protocol consists of sample purification, separation of proteins by 2D-PAGE, enzymatic digestion and identification of proteins by peptide mass fingerprint. Unfortunately, this approach is not appropriate for the identification of membrane or low or high pI proteins. An alternative technique uses 1D-PAGE, which results in a mixture of proteins in each gel band. The direct analysis of the proteolytic digestion of this mixture is often problematic because of poor peptide detection and consequent poor sequence coverage in databases. Sequence coverage can be improved through the combination of several matrices. RESULTS: The aim of this study was to trust the MALDI analysis of complex biological samples, in order to identify proteins that interact with the membrane network of keratinocytes. Peptides obtained from protein trypsin digestions may have either hydrophobic or hydrophilic sections, in which case, the direct analysis of such a mixture by MALDI does not allow desorbing of all peptides. In this work, MALDI/MS experiments were thus performed using four different matrices in concert. The data were analysed with three algorithms in order to test each of them. We observed that the use of at least two matrices in concert leads to a twofold increase of the coverage of each protein. Considering data obtained in this study, we recommend the use of HCCA in concert with the SA matrix in order to obtain a good coverage of hydrophilic proteins, and DHB in concert with the SA matrix to obtain a good coverage of hydrophobic proteins. CONCLUSION: In this work, experiments were performed directly on complex biological samples, in order to see systematic comparison between different matrices for real-life samples and to show a correlation that will be applicable to similar studies. When 1D gel is needed, each band may contain a great number of proteins, each present in small amounts. To improve the proteins coverage, we have performed experiments with some matrices in concert. These experiments enabled reliable identification of proteins, without the use of Nanospray MS/MS experiments.
Project description:Capillary zone electrophoresis (CZE) with an electrokinetically pumped sheath-flow nanospray interface was coupled with a high-resolution Q-Exactive mass spectrometer for the analysis of culture filtrates from Mycobacterium marinum. We confidently identified 22 gene products from the wildtype M. marinum secretome in a single CZE-tandem mass spectrometry (MS/MS) run. A total of 58 proteoforms were observed with post-translational modifications including signal peptide removal, N-terminal methionine excision, and acetylation. The conductivities of aqueous acetic acid and formic acid solutions were measured from 0.1% to 100% concentration (v/v). Acetic acid (70%) provided lower conductivity than 0.25% formic acid and was evaluated as low ionic-strength and a CZE-MS compatible sample buffer with good protein solubility.
Project description:RATIONALE:Biological studies are conducted at ever-increasing rates by relying on proteomic workflows. Although data acquisition by mass spectrometry is highly automated and rapid, sample preparation continues to be the bottleneck of developing high-throughput workflows. Enzymatic protein processing, in particular, involves time-consuming protocols that can extend from one day to another. To address this gap, we developed and evaluated simple, in-solution tryptic enzymatic reactions that unfold within a few minutes, and demonstrate the utility of the methodology for the rapid analysis of proteins originating from cancer cell extracts. METHODS:Tryptic enzymatic reactions were conducted for 7-60?min, and the results were compared with that of a routine approach conducted for 18?h. No other reaction conditions were changed relative to the 18?h procedure. The reaction products were analyzed by nanospray high-performance liquid chromatography/tandem mass spectrometry (nano-HPLC/MS/MS), and the quality of the products was assessed in terms of peptide/protein identifications, sequence coverage, peptide length, missed-cleavage sites, quality of generated ions, and peptide hydrophilic/hydrophobic properties. RESULTS:The results demonstrate that brief, and therefore incomplete, enzymatic processes lead to a large number of peptide fragments that improve protein sequence and proteome coverage, that the tandem mass spectra produced from these peptides are of high quality for reliable protein identifications, and that the physical properties of peptides are prone to supporting the development of alternative multi-dimensional separations and middle-down proteomics analysis strategies. The reproducibility of generating the same peptides within a few minutes of enzymatic digestion was remarkably close to that obtained from 18?h long reactions, and the combined results of short and long reactions increased proteome coverage by ~40%. CONCLUSIONS:We demonstrate that partial enzymatic reactions conducted on short time-scales represent a valuable asset to proteomic studies, and propose their implementation either as simple, cost-effective, stand-alone protocols for substantially streamlining the analysis of biological samples, or as complementary protocols, for improving protein sequence and proteome coverage.
Project description:A simultaneous on-tissue proteolytic digestion and extraction method is described for the in situ analysis of proteins from spatially distinct areas of a tissue section. The digestion occurs on-tissue within a hydrogel network, and peptides extracted from this gel are identified with liquid chromatography tandem MS (LC-MS/MS). The hydrogels are compatible with solubility agents (e.g., chaotropes and detergents) known to improve enzymatic digestion of proteins. Additionally, digestions and extractions are compatible with imaging mass spectrometry (IMS) experiments. As an example application, an initial IMS experiment was conducted to profile lipid species using a traveling wave ion mobility mass spectrometer. On-tissue MS/MS was also performed on the same tissue section to identify lipid ions that showed spatial differences. Subsequently, the section underwent an on-tissue hydrogel digestion to reveal 96 proteins that colocalized to the rat brain cerebellum. Hematoxylin and eosin (H & E) staining was then performed to provide additional histological information about the tissue structure. This technology provides a versatile workflow that can be used to correlate multiple complementary analytical approaches in the analysis of a single tissue section.
Project description:The large-scale extraction and partial purification of endogenous 3',5'-cyclic UMP, 3',5'-cyclic IMP and 3',5'-cyclic dTMP are described. Rat liver, kidney, heart, spleen and lung tissues were subjected to a sequential purification procedure involving freeze-clamping, perchlorate extraction, alumina and Sephadex ion-exchange chromatography and preparative electrophoresis. The samples thus obtained co-chromatographed with authentic cyclic UMP, cyclic IMP and cyclic dTMP on t.l.c. and h.p.l.c. and the u.v. spectra of the extracted samples were identical with those of the standards. Fast atom bombardment of the three cyclic nucleotide standards yielded mass spectra containing a molecular protonated ion in each case; mass-analysed ion kinetic-energy spectrometry ('m.i.k.e.s') of these ions produced a spectrum unique to the parent cyclic nucleotide. The extracted putative cyclic UMP, cyclic IMP and cyclic dTMP each produced a m.i.k.e.s. identical with that obtained with the corresponding cyclic nucleotide standard. Rat liver, heart, kidney, brain, intestine, spleen, testis and lung protein preparations were each found capable of the synthesis of cyclic UMP, cyclic IMP and cyclic dTMP from the corresponding nucleoside triphosphate, of the hydrolysis of these cyclic nucleotides and of their binding, with the exception that cyclic dTMP was not synthesized by the kidney preparation.