Comparative analysis of cystatin superfamily in platyhelminths.
ABSTRACT: The cystatin superfamily is comprised of cysteine proteinase inhibitors and encompasses at least 3 subfamilies: stefins, cystatins and kininogens. In this study, the platyhelminth cystatin superfamily was identified and grouped into stefin and cystatin subfamilies. The conserved domain of stefins (G, QxVxG) was observed in all members of platyhelminth stefins. The three characteristics of cystatins, the cystatin-like domain (G, QxVxG, PW), a signal peptide, and one or two conserved disulfide bonds, were observed in platyhelminths, with the exception of cestodes, which lacked the conserved disulfide bond. However, it is noteworthy that cestode cystatins had two tandem repeated domains, although the second tandem repeated domain did not contain a cystatin-like domain, which has not been previously reported. Tertiary structure analysis of Taenia solium cystatin, one of the cestode cystatins, demonstrated that the N-terminus of T. solium cystatin formed a five turn ?-helix, a five stranded ?-pleated sheet and a hydrophobic edge, similar to the structure of chicken cystatin. Although no conserved disulfide bond was found in T. solium cystatin, the models of T. solium cystatin and chicken cystatin corresponded at the site of the first disulfide bridge of the chicken cystatin. However, the two models were not similar regarding the location of the second disulfide bridge of chicken cystatin. These results showed that T. solium cystatin and chicken cystatin had similarities and differences, suggesting that the biochemistry of T. solium cystatin could be similar to chicken cystatin in its inhibitory function and that it may have further functional roles. The same results were obtained for other cestode cystatins. Phylogenetic analysis showed that cestode cystatins constituted an independent clade and implied that cestode cystatins should be considered to have formed a new clade during evolution.
Project description:The evolutionary aspects of cystatins are greatly underexplored in early-emerging metazoans. Thus, we surveyed the gene organization, protein architecture, and phylogeny of cystatin homologues mined from 110 genomes and the transcriptomes of 58 basal metazoan species, encompassing free-living and parasite taxa of Porifera, Placozoa, Cnidaria (including Myxozoa), and Ctenophora. We found that the cystatin gene repertoire significantly differs among phyla, with stefins present in most of the investigated lineages but with type 2 cystatins missing in several basal metazoan groups. Similar to liver and intestinal flukes, myxozoan parasites possess atypical stefins with chimeric structure that combine motifs of classical stefins and type 2 cystatins. Other early metazoan taxa regardless of lifestyle have only the classical representation of cystatins and lack multi-domain ones. Our comprehensive phylogenetic analyses revealed that stefins and type 2 cystatins clustered into taxonomically defined clades with multiple independent paralogous groups, which probably arose due to gene duplications. The stefin clade split between the subclades of classical stefins and the atypical stefins of myxozoans and flukes. Atypical stefins represent key evolutionary innovations of the two parasite groups for which their origin might have been linked with ancestral gene chimerization, obligate parasitism, life cycle complexity, genome reduction, and host immunity.
Project description:BACKGROUND: The cystatin superfamily comprises cysteine protease inhibitors that play key regulatory roles in protein degradation processes. Although they have been the subject of many studies, little is known about their genesis, evolution and functional diversification. Our aim has been to obtain a comprehensive insight into their origin, distribution, diversity, evolution and classification in Eukaryota, Bacteria and Archaea. RESULTS: We have identified in silico the full complement of the cystatin superfamily in more than 2100 prokaryotic and eukaryotic genomes. The analysis of numerous eukaryotic genomes has provided strong evidence for the emergence of this superfamily in the ancestor of eukaryotes. The progenitor of this superfamily was most probably intracellular and lacked a signal peptide and disulfide bridges, much like the extant Giardia cystatin. A primordial gene duplication produced two ancestral eukaryotic lineages, cystatins and stefins. While stefins remain encoded by a single or a small number of genes throughout the eukaryotes, the cystatins have undergone a more complex and dynamic evolution through numerous gene and domain duplications. In the cystatin superfamily we discovered twenty vertebrate-specific and three angiosperm-specific orthologous families, indicating that functional diversification has occurred only in multicellular eukaryotes. In vertebrate orthologous families, the prevailing trends were loss of the ancestral inhibitory activity and acquisition of novel functions in innate immunity. Bacterial cystatins and stefins may be emergency inhibitors that enable survival of bacteria in the host, defending them from the host's proteolytic activity. CONCLUSION: This study challenges the current view on the classification, origin and evolution of the cystatin superfamily and provides valuable insights into their functional diversification. The findings of this comprehensive study provide guides for future structural and evolutionary studies of the cystatin superfamily as well as of other protease inhibitors and proteases.
Project description:The cystatin family comprises cysteine protease inhibitors distributed in 3 subfamilies (I25A-C). Family members lacking cystatin activity are currently unclassified. Little is known about the evolution of Schistosoma cystatins, their physiological roles, and expression patterns in the parasite life cycle. The present study aimed to identify cystatin homologs in the predicted proteome of three Schistosoma species and other Platyhelminthes. We analyzed the amino acid sequence diversity focused in the identification of protein signatures and to establish evolutionary relationships among Schistosoma and experimentally validated human cystatins. Gene expression patterns were obtained from different developmental stages in Schistosoma mansoni using microarray data. In Schistosoma, only I25A and I25B proteins were identified, reflecting little functional diversification. I25C and unclassified subfamily members were not identified in platyhelminth species here analyzed. The resulting phylogeny placed cystatins in different clades, reflecting their molecular diversity. Our findings suggest that Schistosoma cystatins are very divergent from their human homologs, especially regarding the I25B subfamily. Schistosoma cystatins also differ significantly from other platyhelminth homologs. Finally, transcriptome data publicly available indicated that I25A and I25B genes are constitutively expressed thus could be essential for schistosome life cycle progression. In summary, this study provides insights into the evolution, classification, and functional diversification of cystatins in Schistosoma and other Platyhelminthes, improving our understanding of parasite biology and opening new frontiers in the identification of novel therapeutic targets against helminthiases.
Project description:The cystatin superfamily of cysteine protease inhibitors consists of three major families, including the stefins, cystatins and kininogens. However, the recent identification of several genes that possess sequence similarity with the cystatins but have different gene or protein structures indicates that several new cystatin families or subgroups of families might exist. We previously identified the cystatin-related epididymal spermatogenic (Cres) gene, which is related to the family 2 cystatins but exhibits highly tissue-specific expression in the reproductive tract. In the studies presented here, an analysis of gene structure as well as chromosomal mapping studies suggest that the Cres gene might represent a new subgroup within the family 2 cystatins. Although the Cres gene possesses an additional exon encoding 5' untranslated sequences, its coding exons are similar in size to the three coding exons of the cystatin family 2 genes, and the Cres exon/intron splice junctions occur in identical locations as in the cystatin C gene. Furthermore, chromosomal mapping studies show that the Cres gene co-segregates with the cystatin C gene on mouse chromosome 2. Similar to the cystatin family 2 proteins, the Cres protein possesses the type A and B disulphide loops that are necessary for cystatin folding. Interestingly, Cres protein also possesses half of a type C disulphide loop. Although probably related to the cystatin genes, the Cres gene is distinct in that its promoter contains consensus motifs typical of regulated genes. Finally, reverse transcriptase-mediated PCR studies and the identification of new Cres cDNA clones indicate that the Cres mRNA is alternatively spliced, resulting in two Cres mRNAs that might be involved in the regulation of Cres function.
Project description:Cystatins are a family of cysteine protease inhibitors which are associated with a variety of physiological and pathological processes in vivo. In the present study, the cDNA sequence of a cystatin F homologue called Lm-cystatin F was cloned from the buccal glands of Lampetra morii. Although Lm-cystatin F shares a lower homology with cystatin superfamily members, it is also composed of a signal peptide and three highly conserved motifs, including the G in the N-terminal, QXVXG, as well as the PW in the C-terminal of the sequence. After sequence optimization and recombination, the recombinant protein was expressed as a soluble protein in Escherichia coli with a molecular weight of 19.85 kDa. Through affinity chromatography and mass spectrometry analysis, the purified protein was identified as a recombinant Lm-cystatin F (rLm-cystatin F). Additionally, rLm-cystatin F could inhibit the activity of papain. Based on MTT assay, rLm-cystatin F inhibited the proliferation of human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVECs) dose dependently with an IC50 of 5 μM. In vitro studies show that rLm-cystatin F suppressed the adhesion, migration, invasion, and tube formation of HUVECs, suggesting that rLm-cystatin F possesses anti-angiogenic activity, which provides information on the feeding mechanisms of Lampetra morii and insights into the application of rLm-cystatin F as a potential drug in the future.
Project description:A hybrid linear ion-trap Fourier-transform ion cyclotron resonance mass spectrometer was used for top-down characterization of the abundant human salivary cystatins, including S, S1, S2, SA, SN, C, and D, using collisionally activated dissociation (CAD) after chromatographic purification of the native, disulfide intact proteins. Post-translational modifications and protein sequence polymorphisms arising from single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) were assigned from precursor and product ion masses at a tolerance of 10 ppm, allowing confident identification of individual intact mass tags. Cystatins S, S1, S2, SA, and SN were cleaved of a N-terminal 20 amino acid signal peptide and cystatin C a 26-residue peptide, to yield a generally conserved N-terminus. In contrast, cystatin D isoforms with 24 and 28 amino acid residue N-terminal truncations were found such that their N-termini were not conserved. Cystatin S1 was phosphorylated at Ser3, while S2 was phosphorylated at Ser1 and Ser3, in agreement with previous work. Both cystatin D isoforms carried the polymorphism C46R (SNP: rs1799841). The 14,328 Da isoform of cystatin SN previously assigned with polymorphism P31L due to a SNP (rs2070856) was found only in whole saliva. Parotid secretions contained no detectable cystatins while whole saliva largely mirrored the contents of submandibular/sublingual (SMSL) secretions. With fully characterized cystatin intact mass tags it will now be possible to examine the correlation between the abundance of these molecules and human health and disease.
Project description:Cobra cystatin, a new cysteine-proteinase inhibitor of the cystatin superfamily, was isolated from the venom of the Taiwan cobra (Naja naja atra) by affinity chromatography on S-carboxymethylpapain-Sepharose and reverse-phase chromatography. The venom contained two forms of the inhibitor, one of 11870 Da and the other of 12095 Da, as determined by MS, and pI values of 6.2 and 6.1. Cobra cystatin strongly inhibits cysteine proteinases of the papain family, but not calpain. Papain, cathepsin L, cathepsin B and cathepsin S are inhibited with Ki values of 0.19, 0.1, 2.5 and 1.2 nM respectively. The amino acid sequence of cobra cystatin shows that it is a Type 2 cystatin. The amino acid sequence is 73% identical with that of the cystatin in African-puff-adder (Bitis arietans) venom, with which it shares a unique six-residue insertion in a region opposite the reactive inhibitory site. Cobra cystatin is 25-42% identical with other Type 2 cystatins, the most closely related being the recently described human cystatin M, which also has a similar five-residue insertion starting at position 76 (chicken cystatin numbering). A molecular phylogenetic tree of 16 representative members of Family 2 cystatins was constructed by parsimony analysis; it suggests that snake cystatins, together with Tachypleus tridentatus (Japanese horseshoe crab) cystatin and human cystatin M, form a new subfamily within cystatin Family 2.
Project description:We point out that human low-Mr kininogen contains three cystatin-like sequences, rather than two, as had previously been thought. The protein was purified by affinity chromatography on carboxymethyl-papain-Sepharose, and subjected to limited proteolysis by trypsin and chymotrypsin. Fragments were isolated, and three corresponding to the individual cystatin-like domains were identified. By comparison with the known amino acid sequence of the protein they were numbered 1 to 3 from the N-terminus. Domain 1 was not found to have any inhibitory activity for cysteine proteinases, which is consistent with the absence of residues that are highly conserved in inhibitors of the cystatin superfamily, and have previously been suggested to be essential for activity. Domain 2 was a good inhibitor of chicken calpain, and also papain and cathepsin L. Domain 3 showed negligible inhibition of calpain, but inhibited papain and cathepsin L strongly. The probable arrangement of disulphide bonds in the heavy chain of low-Mr kininogen is deduced from the homology with the cystatins and other evidence contained in the present paper.
Project description:Cystatin superfamily is a large group of evolutionarily related proteins involved in numerous physiological activities through their inhibitory activity towards cysteine proteases. Despite sharing the same cystatin fold, and inhibiting cysteine proteases through the same tripartite edge involving highly conserved N-terminal region, L1 and L2 loop; cystatins differ widely in their inhibitory affinity towards C1 family of cysteine proteases and molecular details of these interactions are still elusive. In this study, inhibitory interactions of human family 1 & 2 cystatins with cathepsin L1 are predicted and their stability and viability are verified through protein docking & comparative molecular dynamics. An overall stabilization effect is observed in all cystatins on complex formation. Complexes are mostly dominated by van der Waals interaction but the relative participation of the conserved regions varied extensively. While van der Waals contacts prevail in L1 and L2 loop, N-terminal segment chiefly acts as electrostatic interaction site. In fact the comparative dynamics study points towards the instrumental role of L1 loop in directing the total interaction profile of the complex either towards electrostatic or van der Waals contacts. The key amino acid residues surfaced via interaction energy, hydrogen bonding and solvent accessible surface area analysis for each cystatin-cathepsin L1 complex influence the mode of binding and thus control the diverse inhibitory affinity of cystatins towards cysteine proteases.
Project description:Inhibition of chicken calpain II by proteins of the cystatin superfamily and alpha 2-macroglobulin was investigated. Human liver cystatins A and B, human cystatin C, chicken cystatin and rat T-kininogen were found not to be inhibitory. Inhibition was, however, observed for bovine and rat kininogens, with Ki (inhibition constant) values of 0.8 nM and 30 nM respectively. alpha 2-Macroglobulin inhibits calpain with an initial rate constant of the order of 3 X 10(4) M-1.S-1. Calpain complexed with alpha 2-macroglobulin showed only limited reactivity towards azocasein, but reacted readily with the peptide substrate Suc-Leu-Tyr-4-methyl-7-coumarylamide and with L-3-carboxy-trans-2,3-epoxypropionyl-leucylamido-(4-guanidin o)butane (E-64). The calpain in the complexes was at least partially protected from loss of activity due to autolysis. The calpain-alpha 2-macroglobulin complexes contained both the calpain subunits.