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Unraveling protein-protein interactions in clathrin assemblies via atomic force spectroscopy.


ABSTRACT: Atomic force microscopy (AFM), single molecule force spectroscopy (SMFS), and single particle force spectroscopy (SPFS) are used to characterize intermolecular interactions and domain structures of clathrin triskelia and clathrin-coated vesicles (CCVs). The latter are involved in receptor-mediated endocytosis (RME) and other trafficking pathways. Here, we subject individual triskelia, bovine-brain CCVs, and reconstituted clathrin-AP180 coats to AFM-SMFS and AFM-SPFS pulling experiments and apply novel analytics to extract force-extension relations from very large data sets. The spectroscopic fingerprints of these samples differ markedly, providing important new information about the mechanism of CCV uncoating. For individual triskelia, SMFS reveals a series of events associated with heavy chain alpha-helix hairpin unfolding, as well as cooperative unraveling of several hairpin domains. SPFS of clathrin assemblies exposes weaker clathrin-clathrin interactions that are indicative of inter-leg association essential for RME and intracellular trafficking. Clathrin-AP180 coats are energetically easier to unravel than the coats of CCVs, with a non-trivial dependence on force-loading rate.

SUBMITTER: Jin AJ 

PROVIDER: S-EPMC3608793 | BioStudies | 2013-01-01

REPOSITORIES: biostudies

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